Today’s reading illustrates another common teaching tool God employs in Scripture: pattern and repetition. In Gen 5, we read over and over again: so and so lived x number of years, and begot so and so. Afterwards he lived y number of years, begot other sons and daughters, so that all his days were z number of years, then he died. Over and over again.
But then we arrive at Gen 5:22, and we read something different:
After he begot Methuselah, Enoch walked with God three hundred years, and had sons and daughters. So all the days of Enoch were three hundred and sixty- five years. And Enoch walked with God; and he was not, for God took him. Gen 5:22-24
And then the previously established pattern resumes. These few verses stand out to us simply because they say something different in a long line of repetition without variation. That is God’s purpose in establishing a pattern, and then breaking that pattern – the break draws our attention!
Enoch walked with God and at the end of his life, he did not die like everyone else.
As we keep reading, we find one other person the Scripture says walked with God – Noah (Gen 6:9). Then God reveals His plan to destroy all flesh in which is the breath of life, except for Noah and his household.
If we think about all we have read from the beginning of Genesis, we can see a recurring pattern:
Walking with God = life
Disobedience to God = sin = death
I think God is trying to tell us something!
For further study: Some very important words in these two chapters are “walk with,” “grace,” and “covenant,” introduced for the first time in Scripture (first uses provide definitions). What do they really mean? Try going to the Blue Letter Bible and looking these up in the Hebrew. Another tool I love is Webster’s Dictionary. When I looked up “with” in Webster’s, I discovered it is used to indicate a participant in an action. Enoch and Noah walked with God. They participated in His action. God did not walk with Enoch or Noah. “Walking with” does not mean God gets on board with us. It means we get on board with God. That is a big difference!
Finding Messiah: Jesus told us, that if we believed Moses, we would believe Him, because Moses wrote about Him (Joh 5:46). Torah is not only filled with Messiah, but revealing Messiah is the goal of Torah! Whenever we read in Torah of life preserved from certain death, we are reading about Messiah! Jesus is our Ark that preserves us from the judgment of God which is coming. In Him, we find grace in the eyes of God.
For further reading:
Did people like Adam and Noah really live over 900 years?
Are there gaps in the Genesis genealogies?
The genealogy to Noah reveals the gospel
Grace – Hebrew word study
Answers about Noah’s Ark