“Enoch walked with God, and he was not, for God took him.”
(Gen 5:24 ESV)
The scripture does not tell us much about Enoch. He performed no miracles, led no armies to victory, and wrote no books of the Bible. Yet, the writer of Hebrews wrote that by faith he was taken up into the presence of God and that he had pleased God.
What an incredible statement this is! Of all those early men who lived over 900 years, Enoch made it to only 365 (Gen 5:23). His earthly days ended early—not because he was killed or struck down for wickedness, but because God was delighted in him. And God’s pleasure with him was such that he was ushered straight into his presence. What immense satisfaction God must have had in this man for him to have done such a remarkable thing! In the genealogy of Genesis 5, every other individual has the years of their life listed and then a note that “he died.” But Enoch alone has the unique privilege of being the only individual in that list to have be “taken” by God.
We must never think that righteous living by faith in this world goes unnoticed by the Lord. As the world around him descended into greater and greater sin, Enoch lived by faith in the God who had made all things. Enoch’s life was not characterized by scattered acts of righteousness here and there, but rather of one living so well before the Lord that it is written of him, “he walked with God.” How comforting to our hearts to know that God looks at his children with pleasure when they live according to his rules! And when our days are complete, it will be the Father’s good pleasure to welcome his good and faithful servants into the joy—the JOY, not indifference—of their Master.
No one longs to run into the arms of one who is indifferent towards them. But there is no joy that is comparable to running into our great Father’s loving arms. The ultimate joy of the Christian is to be able to walk with God in the cool of his garden, to see his face, to speak with him, and to enjoy the richness of fellowship and his presence for all eternity. Nothing else in this world is as sweet. If Jesus Christ should delay his coming, we will not walk the road of Enoch, but the road of Adam and pass through death’s waters. But because of Jesus Christ, we have no need to fear death. Death has lost its sting and we are victors because of our Lord’s work on the cross!
So then, let us take our eyes off what is temporal and lift our gaze to heaven, knowing that our Father watches us with keen interest even as we run now. And when our lives are complete and the Lord calls us home, may our lives too be summarized just like Enoch’s. “He walked with God and was not, for God took him.” And let us say as the Psalmist said, “As for me, I shall behold your face in righteousness; when I awake, I shall be satisfied with your likeness.” (Ps 17:15).
– Pastor Sam Chua