Series: Faith of Our Fathers!
Lesson: June 23-29, 2021
AIM: After studying this lesson, believers should know and realize that “daily walking close to Thee” is not just a song to be sung but a life to be lived!
Point to Ponder: What is faith?
“Faith is bringing future things near.” – Arthur Pink
Hebrews 11:1 (NLT) 1Faith shows the reality of what we hope for; it is the evidence of things we cannot see.
Hebrews 11:1 (NIV) 1Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.
Hebrews 11:1(KJV)1Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.
In Hebrews chapter 11, we see that faith is. . .
- seeing the invisible as though it were visible and living that way.
- Faith is the reality before the reality.
- It is the firm grasp on unseen fact.
What we will see in this lesson is that living a life of faith is deeper than simply living to see and believing to get the things that we want. The writer of Hebrews wants us to know more and dive deeper. We usually start and stop at verse one in Hebrew 11. The problem is that 11:1 continues what was begun in chapter 10:38 and goes to 11:6.
Hebrews 10:38-11:6 (NCV)
38 The person who is right with me will live by trusting in me. But if he turns back with fear, I will not be pleased with him. (Habakkuk 2:3-4)
39 But we are not those who turn back and are lost. We are people who have faith and are saved.
Hebrews 11:1-6 (NCV)
1 Faith means being sure of the things we hope for and knowing that something is real even if we do not see it.
2 Faith is the reason we remember great people who lived in the past.
3 It is by faith we understand that the whole world was made by God’s command so what we see was made by something that cannot be seen.
4 It was by faith that Abel offered God a better sacrifice than Cain did. God said he was pleased with the gifts Abel offered and called Abel a good man because of his faith. Abel died, but through his faith he is still speaking.
5 It was by faith that Enoch was taken to heaven so he would not die. He could not be found, because God had taken him away. Before he was taken, the Scripture says that he was a man who truly pleased God.
6 Without faith no one can please God. Anyone who comes to God must believe that he is real and that he rewards those who truly want to find him.
The description of faith consists of three actions, or effects of faith, set down in these verses.
- The first effect is that faith makes things which are not (but only are hoped for), to subsist and to be present with the believer: verse 1.
- The second effect is that faith makes a believer approved of God: verse 2.
- The third effect is that faith makes a man understand and believe things incredible to sense and reason: verse 3.
In Romans 10:17 we read “Faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the Word of God.” Faith must have a foundation to rest upon, and that foundation must be the Word of Him that cannot lie. God speaks, and the heart receives and acts upon what He says.
- From Abel we learned how to get right with God by way of a blood sacrifice.
- In Enoch we find out how to stay right with God, which we call walking with God.
A. What’s in a name?
- Names told you about that person. It was a testimony for them, and the Jews took name choosing very important.
1. Elijah “Yahweh is God”
2. Elisha “God Saves”
3. Amos “To Carry”
4. Hosea “Salvation” or “Yahweh Saves”
5. Isaiah “Jehovah is Helper” or “Salvation is of the Lord”
6. Enoch “Dedication.” He was dedicated to walking with God.
B. Who is Enoch?
Enoch is first mentioned briefly in the Bible in the book of Genesis in chapter 5 verses 18-24. His first appearance is in verse 18 and by verse 24 he is quickly removed, never to be heard from again; his only other references in the Bible after his departure in Genesis is in the New Testament. The Gospel of Luke 3:37 refer to his belonging to the genealogy of Jesus; in Hebrews 11:5-6 we hear of his faith, and in the book of Jude 14-16 we are given a prophecy concerning the second coming of Christ. But in this lesson, we want to focus on his walk with God and what we can learn from this patriarch of the faith so that we too may walk with God and have that testimony that we pleased Him.
Enoch, the father of Methuselah, lived in the period prior to the Flood. Look at how Genesis 6:5 describes the human race during this period!
Genesis 6:5 (MSG)5God saw that human evil was out of control. People thought evil, imagined evil—evil, evil, evil from morning to night.
Earth was no longer the paradise and place of fellowship God intended. By the time of the Flood only Noah and his family still worshipped God. However, Enoch did not give into the pressures of his culture and try to live a “politically correct” life. Instead, by faith Enoch walked with God.
Genesis 5:18-24 (NLT)
18 When Jared was 162 years old, he became the father of Enoch. 19 After the birth of Enoch, Jared lived another 800 years, and he had other sons and daughters. 20 Jared lived 962 years, and then he died. 21 When Enoch was 65 years old, he became the father of Methuselah. 22 After the birth of Methuselah, Enoch lived in close fellowship with God for another 300 years, and he had other sons and daughters. 23 Enoch lived 365 years, 24 walking in close fellowship with God. Then one day he disappeared, because God took him.
Hebrews 11:5-6 (GNT)
5 It was faith that kept Enoch from dying. Instead, he was taken up to God, and nobody could find him, because God had taken him up. The scripture says that before Enoch was taken up, he had pleased God.6 No one can please God without faith, for whoever comes to God must have faith that God exists and rewards those who seek him.
- Enoch’s Persuasion about God
- God doesn’t want us to have religion; He wants us to have a relationship with Him.
- Enoch had a relationship with God! His walking with Him proves it!
Amos 3:3 (NKJV) 3Can two walk together, unless they are agreed?
- Enoch’s faith was such that he was commended as one who pleased God.
Point to Ponder: What kind of faith pleases God?
Point to Ponder: How does a believer live by faith? What does it mean to live by faith?
- It means to do four things – consistently.
- The believer is to commit his life and his problems to God – all day long – throughout all his waking hours.
- He is to take the experiences and the problems of his day and commit them to God once-for-all!
- God does not like a whining, whimpering child begging and begging for strength when all he is doing is wallowing around in self-pity.
- The believer is to deny self.
- The believer is to act as though he has made a commitment to God. Because he has made a commitment, he is to act like it!!
- Then while the believer is doing what he ought to be doing, he is to be asking God for His grace and strength. He is to be acknowledging God in all His ways throughout the whole day.
- Enoch consistently walked with God 300 years!
- Walking with God is a process –
- to “walk with God” implies a life surrendered to God,
- a life controlled by God,
- a life lived for God.
- It is a voluntary act- it is a surrender of the will. As you walk:
- Learn to hear the voice of God.
- Learn to Obey the voice of God.
- Learn to walk by faith.
- Enoch’s Meditation on God
- To earnestly walk with God, we need to meditate on Him and His Word.
- How do you meditate on God’s Word? If you know how to worry, you know how to meditate.
- When you worry, you take a negative thought and think about it over and over and over.
- When you meditate, take a scripture and think about it over and over, with the purpose of applying it to your life.
- Meditating is essential for walking with God.
- In Joshua we receive a promise if we continually mediate on God’s word and do everything written in it.
Joshua 1:8 (NCV) 8Always remember what is written in the Book of the Teachings. Study it day and night to be sure to obey everything that is written there. If you do this, you will be wise and successful in everything.
- Walking with God requires meditating on and obeying God’s word.
- According to Isaiah what prevents us from walking with God?
Isaiah 59:2 (NIV) 2But your iniquities have separated you from your God; your sins have hidden his face from you, so that he will not hear.
- What is iniquity?
- What is sin?
- Is there is any lack of fairness in dealing with people or unconfessed sin in your life? If so, you cannot walk with God.
- In Ephesians 4:31 we find a list of the most common sins that prevent Christians from walking with God. What are they?
Ephesians 4:31 (NIV) 31 Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice.
- What is bitterness?
- What is rage?
- What is anger?
- What is brawling?
- What is slander?
- What is malice?
- Conspicuously omitted from the list are sins like. . .
- sexual immorality
- But those are not the sins that usually prevent us from walking with God; it is the more subtle and sophisticated ones.
- However, to walk with God we must not only get rid of these sins, but we must replace them with. . .
Ephesians 4:32 (NIV) 32Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.
- What is kindness?
- What is compassionate?
- What is forgiveness?
- Enoch’s Proclamation for God
- Not only did Enoch go against the grain of his culture, but he also proclaimed God’s truth to it.
- Though not mentioned anywhere else in the Bible, in Jude we find out that Enoch preached God’s Word as it was revealed to him.
Jude 14-15 (NIV) 14Enoch, the seventh from Adam, prophesied about them: “See, the Lord is coming with thousands upon thousands of his holy ones 15to judge everyone, and to convict all of them of all the ungodly acts they have committed in their ungodliness, and of all the defiant words ungodly sinners have spoken against him.”
- Enoch’s Translation by God
- God was so pleased with Enoch that He did not wait until Enoch died for him to come to heaven. Therefore, Enoch was taken from this life, so that he did not experience death; he could not be found, because God had taken him away (Hebrews 11:5a). Genesis 5:24b describes it like this: then he was no more, because God took him away.
- After 300 years of walking with God, in an instant God just took him. As the KJV translates Hebrews 11:5a. . .Enoch was translated that he should not see death.
- The Bible does not say how God took him.
- Only one other person in the Bible is described as being translated into God’s presence without having to die.
2 Kings 2:11 (NCV)11As they were walking and talking, a chariot and horses of fire appeared and separated Elijah from Elisha. Then Elijah went up to heaven in a whirlwind.
- In Genesis 5:1-24, we see the words for everyone. . . and then he died!
- Upon the millions and millions of people born into the world, all have died but Enoch did not. The Bible just says, “God took him.”
- God may have taken Enoch like He translated Elijah. Or Enoch’s translation may have been like the translation of believers when Christ returns:
1 Thessalonians 4:17 (NCV) 17After that, we who are still alive will be gathered up with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And we will be with the Lord forever.
- How God took Enoch is not important; that’s why God does not tell us.
- The important thing is not how or when he went but where he went!
- The same is true of you and me.
- It is not really important when you die, where you die, or how you die. The only important thing is where you go when you die.
- If you, like Enoch, believe God is, that He will reward you for seeking Him through Jesus Christ, and you walk with God, then one day, may be sooner than you think, you will go to be with God and find that God is pleased with you!
- Are you ready?
PRAYER PRINCIPLE: Ask God to keep you focused for your perpetual walk with Him.
SOCIAL JUSTICE PRINCIPLE: Encourage others on their journey so that they will be ready to live a life with God.
EVANGELISM PRINCIPLE: Share with others that Christ the best example of obedience and sacrifice; be prepared to share how his life changed yours.
STEWARDSHIP PRINCIPLE: It is important to be a giver; remain diligent in doing so.
DISCIPLESHIP PRINCIPLE: Although you may feel unworthy to God’s call; ready yourself by continually prepping through your obedience, Bible study, prayer and fasting.