Summary: Exposition of Hebrews 11 regarding three things we can learn from Enoch.
Text: Heb 11:5, Title: Into Thin Air, Date/Place: NRBC, 11/27/11, PM
A. Opening illustration: the spike that Kait and I saw on Thurs morning vanishing into thin air
B. Background to passage: these are examples in Hebrews of heroes of God who overcame their suffering by faith clinging to God.
C. Main thought: Three things we can learn from Enoch
A. Walked by Faith (Gen 5:21-24)
1. Twice in these four verses that comprise everything we know about Enoch from the OT, he is said that he continually walked with God. Not only God, but “the” God; this probably evidencing the fact that idolatry was rampant along with all sorts of other forms of immorality and depravity. So he was walking with God when most others were not. There were surely times when he was sick, times when disaster came, times when people where mean, times when life was unfair, times when he was too busy, times when he just didn’t feel like it, times when he woke up late, times when it was hard… This walk was by faith. This was a walk in holiness, for one cannot walk with God without holiness. This was a walk of a man in tune with God’s will.
3. Illustration: describe in depth how it might be to walk with someone all the time who was absolutely wonderful, tell about the All American Muslim guy who converted, and was having to reject alcohol at the tailgate party, but when it came to fasting, he threw in the towel, Nathan’s commitment at 19 not to watch movies, Luther said that he had so much going that he could not get it all done if he didn’t spend at least three hours a day in prayer,
4. The thing that is hard for us is consistency. This man walked with God for 300 years. He walked with God so well that God took him home with Him instead of letting him experience death. It is easy to walk in righteousness when lots of others are around you, but the proof comes when lots of others are not, when it’s difficult. If you want to have a close communion with God, you must practice, work toward, and seek holiness. Are there sins that you tolerate about yourself currently? Are there things that dull your spiritual hunger pangs? Do you look like, smell like, act like the world? How is your communion with God? Intercession is good, supplication is good, but how about fellowship? Do you have uninterrupted time with Him. Bottom line is that if we don’t, it is because we deem other things more important. Do you feel as those He holds your hand as you walk?
B. Preached the Truth (Jude 14-15)
1. Jude tells us that he was a prophet, a proclaimer of truth. The message that we know he preached was two-fold: 1) the Lord is coming with 10K of his holy ones and 2) when He comes, he will judge the ungodly. Notice how many times this word is used. This wouldn’t have been a popular message then anymore than it is now. But regardless of its popularity, Enoch preached it.
3. Illustration: “What are we waiting for”
4. Each one of us has a responsibility to share the good news. But the good news starts out with the gripping reality that we are all sinners and in danger of the wrath of God upon His appearing. Seriously, how many people do you think that you have shared the gospel with? How many lost people do you know? How many of your lost friends must perish without having you tell them? It is your responsibility to share the gospel of Jesus. Have you done it today? This week? This month? Our covenant says that we will, our bible tells us to. Isn’t His word enough? And don’t short-circuit the gospel by jumping right to “He’s got a wonderful plan for your life.” Don’t miss the bad news. The good news doesn’t sound so good without the bad.
C. Pleased the Lord (Heb 11:5)
1. Hebrews tells us that he walked with God so close that God took him. It says that he didn’t taste death. Now Adam had died 57 years earlier, and Abel had died, but other than that, Enoch was the next to “die,” although we know he didn’t. Wonder what heaven would have been like with only three people there? Anyway, the writer tells us that this was the testimony obtained by Enoch that he pleased God. It means that God took delight in Him because of their close communion. And this was God’s blessing on Enoch: the loss of 600 years on earth.