Genesis 5:21-24, Hebrews 11:2, Jude 1:14
Summary: Enoch is mentioned in only a handful of verses, yet his influence as a man of God made an impact in his time and the times to come.
The Bible tells of men and women who were used by God as judges, warriors, kings, statesmen, prophets, and preachers. The Bible does not hold back on showing us that they were also susceptible to a range of faults, failures, and sins that caused some, like Samson and David, to live with the consequences of their rash, foolish, and often tragic actions.
As closely as Moses walked with God, he was forbidden by God to enter the Promised Land with the children of Israel because of his temper and disobedience. There were kings who started out well, like Solomon, who built the Temple and led the people in prayers of thanksgiving to God on the day when it was completed and consecrated. In later years, Solomon did not walk with God and started to worship the false gods his numerous wives had brought into Israel. As a result, the kingdom was torn in two, and a succession of both godly and deviant rulers eventually brought down both kingdoms; the nation went into exile under a succession of empires.
The lives of these noted leaders and warriors varied with their times and ages. Some had a long, fruitful life, while some came and went like the wind, making little if any impact on the history of Israel. However, this does not negate or minimize in any way the value and purpose that each life has in the course of history, no matter how long they lived. Your own life is a gift from God, and you are here at this exact time for a reason. What you do with it is going to make a difference for good or bad.
In our journey through the opening chapters of the book of Genesis, we come to a list of names. These names represent real people who lived real lives, yet Scripture gives us little more than the fact that they bore sons and daughters and died, having lived for hundreds of years. The first twenty verses of Genesis 5 are devoted to recording these names and little else. Then our attention is drawn to one particular name, that of Enoch, the father of Methuselah who would live 969 years, and with his death would come God’s judgment upon the world by means of the flood. The verse that stands out in the midst of this list of names is the one that says Enoch “walked with God.”
At the end of Genesis 4 and the birth of Seth, we read that men “began to call on the name of the Lord.” This shows that the wickedness of men was beginning to infiltrate minds and hearts to deter from the guidance and direction of God in order to pursue their own particular interests and the sinful ideas that hardened their hearts toward God. Humanity was starting to sow the seeds of their coming destruction. Yet, God always has His remnant followers who are faithful to Him and will not allow sin to draw them away from His will and direction. This is the legacy of Enoch.
At some point in his life, the growing evil in the world became a source of grief and revulsion to him. He called on the name of the Lord and, in turn, received the blessings of salvation and fellowship. Enoch saw God as a Friend who would always be with him, and God used Enoch in the role of a prophet, warning both his and future generations of the coming of the Lord to this world with His saints to exact judgment and vengeance on His enemies.
There is a “Book of Enoch” that has a collection of teachings on fallen angels and other topics dealing with the last days and the judgments of God, yet God saw fit to not have it as part of the canon of Scripture. God’s Sovereign use of Enoch was for him to give a warning to wicked men that a day of judgment was at hand, that sin would not be tolerated, and that all people need to repent and turn to God for salvation.
The Bible says that Enoch “walked with God, and then was not, for God took him.” Of all the people listed in the Scriptures, only Enoch and the prophet Elijah were given the privilege of entering heaven without dying. Some Bible prophecy teachers believe that Enoch and Elijah will be the two witnesses described in Revelation 11.
Enoch’s departure into heaven is considered by many Bible prophecy teachers to be an example of the promised “Rapture” of Christ’s true church taught in 1 Thessalonians 4 and 1 Corinthians 15. Enoch’s life consists of a handful of verses yet shows what someone can do for the glory of God in a brief span of time.
God is ready to use you for His grace and glory. Be certain that you have an authentic walk with Him, spend time with Him in prayer, read His Word, and then prepare yourself for what He has in store for your life.