Enoch leaves this world in an unusual way. He is taken without experiencing Death…
21 When Enoch had lived 65 years, he fathered a son named Methuselah.
22 After Methuselah was born, Enoch lived in a close relationship with God for 300 more years; he also had other sons and daughters.
23 He lived to be 365 years old, 24 but Enoch had such a close and intimate relationship with God that one day he just vanished—God took him.
Two comments on verse 24 are pertinent.
First, Enoch’s release from death was due to his faith.
Second, before his translation to heaven he had lived a life pleasing to God.
In an age of corruption Enoch stood out as a man of righteousness.
He showed his faith by his walk with God.
Faith in a God he could not see controlled Enoch’s life.
Sometime during his life Enoch must have received a promise from God that he would go to heaven without dying.
Up to that time everyone had died—sooner or later.
There was no record of anyone ever having been taken away without dying.
But God promised and Enoch believed.
It was the most sane, rational thing that Enoch could do; what is more reasonable than that the creature should believe his Creator?
And so it happened! Enoch walked with the invisible God for three hundred years (Gen. 5:21–24) and then he walked into eternity.
Before he was taken he had this testimony, that he pleased God. The life of faith always pleases God.
Believing that God exists is only the beginning; even the demons believe that much (James 2:19-20).
God will not settle for mere acknowledgment of His existence. He wants your faith to lead to a personal, dynamic relationship.
The great church leader Augustine was among the first to ponder the relationship of faith to reason.
He concluded, “I believe in order to understand”—meaning that true understanding follows commitment to God.
We cannot hope to understand God by human reason alone.
Almost 900 years after Augustine, the great theologian Thomas Aquinas wrote that reason, while marred by sin, can know God through arguments and proofs.
God has given us minds, and they should be developed and used.
To ignore intellectual growth is to live a stunted and naive life.
God wants our trust and faith, even while we ponder and wonder about so many matters that are mysterious to us.
God has spoken to us—to our minds, hearts, and wills—in the person of Jesus Christ.
We do not believe in a void, nor leap into the dark.
Faith is reasonable, though reason alone cannot explain the whole of it.
Use your mind to think through your faith, but leave room for the unexplainable works of God.
With that said, the Bible also tells us, in Proverbs 3:5, to trust the LORD with all your heart and not to lean on your own understanding.
In other words, we must trust the LORD completely in every choice we make.
We should not omit careful thinking or belittle our God-given ability to reason, but we should not trust our own ideas to the exclusion of all others.
We must not be wise in our own eyes (see Prov 3:7). We should listen to and accept correction from God’s Word and wise counselors.
Bring your decisions to God in prayer, use the Bible as your guide, and then follow God’s leading.
He will direct your paths by both guiding and protecting you.
Monday, July 11
Daily Verse and Comment
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.
Nearly fifty times in the New Testament, walking is used as a metaphor to describe how we live our daily lives.
These numerous references signify just how important this concept is to God.
For instance, Paul exhorts us to make our walk a worthy one (Colossians 1:10), one accomplished by faith and not sight (II Corinthians 5:7).
Enoch walked with God for 300 years (Genesis 5:22, 24).
For three centuries, Enoch included God in every aspect of his life. In other words, wherever Enoch was, God was.
In life, they were inseparable partners.
We can please God as Enoch did by following his example.
How do we include God in every aspect of our lives as Enoch did in such an exemplary way?
How do we ensure that God is wherever we are?
Striving to pray always accomplishes both. It is a major element in walking with God.
How do we compare to Enoch’s example?
Can God say of us what He says about Enoch, that He is a partner in every aspect of our lives?
Rather than running from God as a Laodicean would, Enoch wanted God to be present and involved in his life.
He willingly and without fear subjected himself to God’s minute evaluation and examination because of their intimate relationship developed through time and contact.
Enoch’s walk with God is an example of a life lived with true dedication, and it can be the same for us.
Praying always clearly demonstrates the true intent of the heart and our true dedication to God.
The first Great Commandment is to “love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind” (Matthew 22:36-38).
Because it is first, we will probably be evaluated on it most thoroughly.
Praying always demonstrates our desire to comply with it.
— Pat Higgins
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