Second Sunday Of Lent: Learning To Walk With God
Enoch is a lesser-known character of Scripture, but Genesis 5 says that he “walked with God,” and Hebrews 11 tells us “he pleased God.”
Those two phrases about Enoch, “walked with God” and “he pleased God” meshes well with the words of Paul given in the first verse in our epistle reading for today.
“Finally, then, brothers, we ask and urge you in the Lord Jesus, that as you received from us how you ought to walk and to please God, just as you are doing, that you do so more and more.”
What does a life of walking with God look like?
Enoch was a champion of faith. “By faith Enoch was taken away so that he did not see death, ‘and was not found, because God had taken him’; for before he was taken he had this testimony, that he pleased God” (Hebrews 11:5).
Is that your testimony, that you please God? “But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him” (Hebrews 11:6). As a Christian, you are meant to enjoy a life of intimate fellowship with God.
We find Enoch’s story in Genesis 5, which reads like an obituary. “All the days of Seth were nine hundred and twelve years, and he died….the days of Cainan were nine hundred and ten years; and he died….the days of Jared were nine hundred and sixty-two years; and he died.” (See Genesis 5:6-18.) Its the circle of life. They lived.....they had children....and then they died!
But one name stands out like a white rose in this desert of death: “So all the days of Enoch were three hundred and sixty-five years. And Enoch walked with God, and was seen no more: because God took him.” (Genesis 5:23-24). Genesis 5 doesn’t say that Enoch died. He was taken straight to Heaven.
So what characterizes Enoch’s life of walking with God?
First, Walking with God Is a Life of Faith
Enoch pleased God by walking with Him. He walked with God by believing Him. Where did Enoch get his faith? From the Word of God. “So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God” (Romans 10:17). You will never have faith apart from the Word of God. Faith is not guessing at what Gods Word is; faith is learning His Will through His Word and believing Him.
Some Christians think the phrase “word of God” in Scripture always refers to the Bible. Often it does, but often it doesn’t. In many places it refers to Jesus, to oral prophecy, or to the oral preaching and teaching.
Did you know that Enoch was a prophet? “Now Enoch, the seventh from Adam, prophesied about these men also, saying, “Behold, the Lord comes with ten thousands of His saints…” (Jude 1:14). Only seven generations from Adam, he prophesied of Christ’s second coming.
Who taught Enoch? How did Enoch become a prophet? We can see from Enoch an example of the Word of God being not only the contents of the Bible, but the oral teachings of the Word of God handed down.
Adam had walked in Eden with God. Imagine how God uploaded to Adam all these glorious truths! When Enoch was born, Adam was 622 years of age (just in the prime of life). Adam and Enoch walked together for 308 years. Imagine Enoch asking Adam, “What was it like when you and God walked through the Garden?”
Question: do you want to walk with God? Would you like for God to be more real to you than the person sitting next to you? It is possible.
Walking with God Is a Life of Fellowship
You step in by faith, but you walk on in fellowship. The Apostle Paul wrote, “I know whom I have believed” (2 Timothy 1:12b). Not, I know in whom I believe. Paul didn’t want a preposition between himself and Christ. You may know about somebody without knowing somebody, but you are to know Christ intimately.
“Can two walk together, unless they are agreed” (Amos 3:3)?
“He has shown you, O man, what is good; and what does the LORD require of you but to do justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God” (Micah 6:8)?
If God only wanted service, He would use angels. Of course, we should serve God, but that is not why He created us. He created you in His image so that He could have fellowship with you.
Is Christ real to you when you are driving? Doing dishes, working at your desk, sitting at school? Faith is not something we put on when we come to church. How wonderful it is when people who have been walking with God come to church and do corporately what they have been doing individually all week long.
Enoch walked with God for 300 years. That’s 109,500 days—good, bad, rain, drought, war, peace, opposition. Enoch’s walk was constant and faithful. And he did not do it in a monastery. Genesis 5 says he had a family. Doubtless, he had a job, a home. Enoch walked with God during the days of Noah—when violence, vice, and wickedness were so rampant that God decided to destroy the world with a flood. In a day of demonic force, Enoch walked with God.
It is hard for anybody to walk with God if he does it in his own strength. God is releasing His power and grace into you to walk the Christian life day by day. You could not be faithful if it were not for the Lord in you.
Walking with God Is a Life of Fruitfulness
Do you want your life to count for God? Walking with God is a life of fruitfulness.
Why was Enoch so fruitful? He had a crisis in life, after which he began to walk with God. What was his crisis? He became a father. “After he begot Methuselah, Enoch walked with God three hundred years…” (Genesis 5:22a).
Bible names had special meanings. Methuselah means “when he is gone, it will be sent.” The Bible says in Amos 3:7, “Surely the Lord GOD does nothing, unless He reveals His secret to His servants the prophets.” Remember: Enoch was a prophet. When Methuselah was born, God told Enoch, “I am going to destroy the world with a flood. When this baby boy is dead, it will be sent.”
Methuselah lived 969 years, longer than anyone else in history. Why? The New Testament tells us: “The Lord delayeth not his promise, as some imagine, but dealeth patiently for your sake, not willing that any should perish, but that all should return to repentance.” (2 Peter 3:9). God waited 969 years because of His Divine Mercy. Why doesn’t Jesus come in our day? Because God is waiting for more people to be saved.
Jesus said, “And fear ye not them that kill the body, and are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him that can destroy both soul and body in hell.” (Matthew 10:28). “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom…” (Psalm 111:10a). One of the marks of the last days is a people who have “no fear of God before their eyes.” (Romans 3:18.)
God Almighty is a God of judgment. He is a God of infinite, matchless, unfathomable, indescribably glorious love—but He is also a God of wrath. If you say He is a God of love and don’t say that He is a God of wrath, that is only half the truth. If you try to make half the truth become all of the truth, it becomes an untruth.
God said to Enoch, “When Methuselah is gone, judgment will be sent.”
Enoch said, “Then I had better walk with God.”
Today, you too know that judgment is coming, and you had better walk with God. What are you doing for Heaven’s sake? How are you living in this day, this age? Is Jesus real to you?
Maybe you are attempting a balancing act of trying to please God and man.
“For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please man? If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant of Christ.” (Galatians 1:10)
No one can ultimately serve both God and man. And God knows whom we really serve, whose pleasure we crave the most.
“...we speak, not to please man, but to please God who tests our hearts.”
(1 Thessalonians 2:4)
We make idols of others when we fear men and what they will think.
Jesus put his finger on the ancient fear of man when he confronted the proud people-pleasers of his day: “How can you believe, when you receive glory from one another and do not seek the glory that comes from the only God?” (John 5:44). People-pleasing had blinded them to Jesus. Unchecked, it will cover our eyes as well. “They loved the glory that comes from man,” John 12:43 tells us, “more than the glory that comes from God.” That preference is the essence and danger of people-pleasing.
Are you walking to please God? Is their an idol in your life that hinders your walk with Him?