- Sermon Notes
Walking Closer with God
ILLUS – Signs You Might be in a Texas Country Church
1.Have you ever noticed that people can get caught up in the strangest things and somehow think it’s “Christian” or that they’re “having church”?
2.Why do I ask such a question? Because I believe there’s longing in our hearts for what’s authentic. But what does “authentic” look like?
3.The standard for Christian faith and practice is and must be the Bible. So, what does the Bible say about having an authentic relationship with God?
4.Tonight, we’re going to look at a person who had an authentic relationship with God. The writer of Hebrews said this man was one “of whom the world was not worthy”. (Hebrews 11:38)
5.As we look at his life, I believe we will discover principles for what it means to truly walk closer with God.
1.When it comes to genealogies, many just skip to the next chapter. Yet, biblical genealogies are filled with wonderful treasures just waiting to be discovered.
2.For instance, in verse 1 we are taken back to the first two chapters in Genesis, when God created Adam and Eve.
3.Then in verse 3, Adam’s son, Seth, is described as being made in the “image” or “likeness” of Adam.
4.But it’s not until we read fifth verse that we realize the innocence of Genesis 1 and 2 is gone, for in that verse we are reminded of Adam’s fall when we see the words “Adam died” at the age of 930.
5.Why did the Bible record Adam’s death? Because God always keeps His Word.
a.God judged the first couple for eating the forbidden fruit which resulted in Adam’s death; a judgment that all of creation still endures.
b.Yet there is hope for God promised a Rescuer who would defeat sin, death, and Satan in Genesis 3:15.
6.In Genesis 5, there is a clear the pattern of life followed by death which is unbroken until we read verse 21. Here we are told of a man who lived and did not die because “he walked with God”. His name was Enoch.
I. Do Life with God
A. Doing life with God is a choice
1.Enoch lived in dark, corrupt times.
a.God was forgotten.
b.Life was not valued so murder and immorality were the norm.
c.The world had a one-track mind; to satisfy self and gratify one’s ego at any cost.
d.It was a world that was willfully rushing towards judgment.
Genesis 6:5-6, Then the Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great on the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. And the Lord was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and He was grieved in His heart.
2.But it appears that something changed for Enoch
around the time of his son’s birth.
a.For the first 65 years of life, Enoch just walked.
APPL – Many people live their lives this way. They get up, fight through day, and then go to bed. Repeat.b.After his son’s birth, Enoch “walked with God”.
3.Something had stirred within Enoch.
a.Maybe it was holding his son for the first time and realizing he was raising a son in a wicked world. He wanted to give him more than what the world had to offer.
b.Maybe it was talking with Adam, who would have been 687 years old at Methuselah’s birth.
c.But I believe the name of Enoch’s son provides a clue about the change in Enoch.
- “Methuselah” has been taken to mean one of two things.
- The first meaning is, “When he is dead it shall be sent”.
- The second meaning is, “Man of the dart” or “spear, javelin, arrow”.
- Both appear to relate to a coming judgment.
- Methuselah lived 969 years, longer than any other person mentioned in the Bible.
- When one calculates the year of his death, it matches the year when Noah’s flood began. “When he is dead it shall be sent.”
- A dart or arrow was used as an instrument of death or judgment.
- Remember, after the flood God promised Noah that He would never flood the earth again.
- God gave Noah a sign, the rainbow which signified the bow and arrow were pointed away from the earth; a symbol of peace between God and man.
- So, “In the day of Methuselah’s death, the arrow shall be sent”.
- Please note, the length of Methuselah’s life was a sign of God’s grace, an opportunity for people to repent.
- Yet, the day of his death was a divine message that judgment day had come.
4.The message was not lost on Enoch for he made a choice that changed his life forever.
a.Some choose to live for themselves.
ILLUS – Two hikers were walking through the woods when they were suddenly confronted by a bear…
b.But Enoch chose to do life with the Lord, to stay close to his God so that he may be blessed and raise his children to do the same.
Philippians 1:21, For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain.
B.Doing life with God is personal
1.Enoch “walked with God”.
a.This phrase is used three times in the Bible.
b.It was said of Enoch twice in four verses,
emphasizing the uniqueness of Enoch’s life.
c.Was Enoch successful in passing on his faith to his children? The answer is “Yes” for the third reference for “walking with God” is linked to his great-grandson, Noah. (Genesis 6:9)
2.Walking with God means…
a.Enoch was living a life reminiscent of life before the Fall, “walking in the cool of the day” with God.(Genesis 3:8)
b.Enoch invited God into his life, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.
Psalm 23, The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside quiet waters. He restores my soul; He guides me in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake.
Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil; for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; You have anointed my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely goodness and loving kindness will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.
3.“Walking with God” means complete devotion to God.
a.The name “Enoch” means “dedicated” or “initiated”.
b.Enoch “dedicated” himself to the highest honor
offered to man, to know and walk with God.
ILLUS – The media fawns over the rich, powerful, and famous.
Philippians 3:8, More than that, I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish in order that I may gain Christ.
c.It was a relationship that lasted for 300 years on this earth before God said, “Come home!”
ILLUS – While pastoring a Calvary Chapel in East Dallas, Texas a dear brother continually reminded me that the Christian faith is about a relationship with God, not man-made programs or the latest fades.
Romans 8:15, For you have not received a spirit of slavery leading to fear again, but you have received a spirit of adoption as sons by which we cry out, “Abba! Father!”
1 John 3:1, See how great a love the Father has bestowed upon us, that we should be called children of God; and such we are.
II.Walking Closer with God Pleases God
ILLUS – What do you get that special someone for Christmas?
A.Faith in God pleases God
1.You cannot have a true relationship with someone unless there is trust.
a.A relationship will never go deeper than the level of trust one has in his or her heart.
b.After the Fall, man’s trust in God was broken
because Adam and Eve believed the enemy’s lie.
Genesis 3:4-5, And the serpent said to the woman, “You surely shall not die! For God knows that in the day you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”
c.But Enoch went against the tide of public opinion and trusted God! So, God told the world that He was pleased with Enoch!
Hebrews 11:5, By faith Enoch was taken up so that he should not see death; and he was not found because God took him up; for he obtained the witness that before he was taken up he was pleasing to God.
2.Only faith pleases God.
Hebrews 11:6, And without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him.
a.If we live by anything other than faith in God, it is sin.
Romans 14:23, …whatever is not from faith is sin.
b.We must believe He is.
c.We must believe that God rewards faith.
d.What was Enoch’s reward?
- Enoch was the first to be raptured. No death.
- Enoch had a testimony that God was pleased with him.
- Enoch knew and lived with the God of all creation.
APPL – Now we are getting at the real purpose of life, to live with God and hear Him say one day, “You did life right because we did life together!”
B.God wants to start walking with you
ILLUS – I love making memories with my kids
APPL – If I love spending time with my kids, imagine how much our Good Father loves doing life with us.
1.But the relationship was broken after the Fall.
Genesis 3:8-9, And they heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden. Then the Lord God called to the man, and said to him, “Where are you?”
2.God has been reaching out to us ever since.
a.God wanted to walk with Israel.
Leviticus 26:3, 12, If you walk in My statutes and keep My commandments so as to carry them out, … I will also walk among you and be your God, and you shall be My people.
b.God sent His Son, Jesus Christ so that we may walk with God.
John 3:16, For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life.
c.Now, God invites the Church to walk with Him.
1 John 1:5-7, This is the message we have heard from Him and announce to you, that God is Light, and in Him there is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with Him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth; but if we walk in the Light as He Himself is in the Light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin.
Do you want to walk closer with God like Enoch did?
Tonight, will you accept God’s invitation to do life with Him?
Revelation 3:20, Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come into him, and will dine with him, and he with Me.
Genesis 5:21-24 NASB
21 Enoch lived sixty-five years, and became the father of Methuselah. 22 Then Enoch walked with God three hundred years after he became the father of Methuselah, and he had other sons and daughters. 23 So all the days of Enoch were three hundred and sixty-five years. 24 Enoch walked with God; and he was not, for God took him.