"Enoch walked with God: and he was not; for God took him."—Gen_5:24.
Scripture biography is highly interesting and instructive. Always faithful and impartial. Designed for our spiritual advantage—that we may imitate the excellencies of God's people, and avoid their errors. Generally concise: the pious and useful career of distinguished individuals often presented to our notice in a single paragraph. This applies, especially, to the subject under consideration. Enoch's history and character are summed up in a few verses; yet his name will be fragrant to the church of God to the end of time.
Notice, I. Enoch's piety. "He walked with God." And, II. His Distinguished Removal. "He was not; for God took him."
I. Enoch's Piety.
"He walked with God."
Human life is often represented as a course or way; and the practices of men are spoken of, as walking in these ways. We read of the way of sinners—of the scorner—of fools—of transgressors, &c. Also, the way of the upright—the ways of wisdom, &c. Also, of walking in connection with God. Sometimes, walking before God; as in Abraham; Gen_17:1. Walk ing in God's sight; Isa_2:5. In reference to Enoch (and the same is said of Noah) "Walking with God." This walking with God includes,
1. A true knowledge of God.
Of his character and laws, of his will concerning us, &c. "This is life eternal, to know thee, the true God." All sound religion is based on knowledge. We can not rightly worship, serve, and love an unknown God; Pro_1:7; Pro_15:14; 2Co_5:6. It includes,
2. Reconciliation to God.
"Can two walk together, except they be agreed?" Amo_3:3. It includes the cessation of all hostility on the part of the sinner, and that he becomes of one mind with Jehovah, In Jesus, alone, can this be effected. He is the only meeting-place, in that gift God expresses his love to man; and in coming to him, and exercising faith upon him, the soul evinces love and confidence towards God. It includes,
3. Cheerful obedience to the commands of God.
Obedience is the true test of a right heart—the only sound knowledge, and the only evidence, of living faith. "Hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments;" 1Jn_2:3. It includes,
4. Devotional intercourse with God.
In meditation—prayer—praise. Psa_42:2; Psa_84:2. It includes,
5. Assimilation to the holy image of God.
Constant intercourse will elevate the soul to the divine likeness. This is clearly expressed; 2Co_3:18 It includes,
6. Advancement in all the things of God.
"He walked." Went onwards; left the things which were behind, and pressed towards those which were before. His knowledge became clearer, faith stronger, hope brighter, love warmer, obedience more complete, character more and more spiritual, &c.
Walking with God is associated with, (1) True dignity. (2) Real pleasure. (3) Permanent security. And, (4) Eternal advantages.
II. His distinguished Removal.
"He was not: for God took him."
The Apostle, in his Epistle to the Hebrews, fully illustrates this part of the subject; for he says, "God translated him, that he should not see death." Heb_11:5, &c.
1. "He was not."
That is, no more among men.
(1) He was not allowed to remain in a troublesome and ungodly world.
(2) He was not subjected to the, otherwise, universal stroke of mortality. Exempted from disease, death, and corruption.
2. "God took him."
(1) In a peculiar way. Body and soul unseparated. No doubt some change equivalent to death; but without its pain and degradation; and without the body seeing corruption.
(2) God took him to himself; to his own immediate presence, "where is fulness of joy," &c.
(3) God took him; and thus signalized and honored distinguished piety. He had chosen God, believed in his name, obeyed his will, lived in close and cheerful communion with him, &c. Now, he is taken into closer fellowship with God; where the intercourse may be full, constant, uninterrupted, and eternal.
Learn, 1. The nature of true piety. To walk with God. 2. The reward of true piety. Interested in God's gracious care; and ultimately raised to his own divine presence. "Beloved, now are we the sons of God," &c. 3. Removal of Enoch. Might be intended to teach the immortality of the soul, the resurrection of one body and the final glorification of both, in the heavenly world.