Monday, August 3, 2009

Walking with God

Enoch walked with God; and he was not, for God took him. (Genesis 5:24)
The author of Hebrews comments on this unusual primeval event:
By faith Enoch was taken away so that he did not see death, “and was not found because God had taken him”; for before he was taken, he had this testimony, that he pleased God. (Hebrews 11:5)
The Greek word for “taken,” used in all three instances in this verse, means to transfer, transport, or translate. In other words, Enoch walked with God and ended up very differently than when He began. He was not just changed as to his spiritual condition, he even experienced a change in his physical state. God, who is Spirit, created the material universe, so physical reality is essentially a manifestation of the spiritual realm.

The Septuagint, an early translation of the Hebrew Scriptures into Greek, uses in Genesis 5:24 the Greek verb for “pleased” in place of the Hebrew word for “walked.” It signifies that Enoch did not merely happen to be accompanying God in this journey, but he actually pleased God in doing so — he was a delight to Him.

God had wanted to walk with Adam in this way. He came walking in the Garden in the “cool of the day,” looking for him (Genesis 3:8-9). But of course, Adam had already disconnected from God by his rebellion. It is significant that the “hall of fame of faith” in Hebrews 11 does not begin with, “By faith Adam …” Adam acted as he did precisely because he did not believe God.

But that is what pleases God — faith! As Hebrews goes on to say, “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 diligently seek Him” (Hebrews 11:6). Faith is believing that God is, and that He rewards those who seek Him out. That pleases God, which is exactly what Enoch did. He walked with God in faith — and it changed his entire existence.

There is a way of walking in this world that can transport you into a higher reality, a new realm of living, a delightful fellowship with God. It is the way of faith — believing God.