Summary: Distinguishing marks of those who are Adam’s line
Islington Baptist Church March 4, 2001
Sermon text: Genesis 5-6:8
What can we learn from a “boring” genealogy
For the most part the Bible’s genealogies are viewed by Christians to be something of a nuisance, something to be quickly brushed over. In essence, the Bible’s genealogies are widely viewed as “Boring”.
A strange irony is that we find our own personal family history’s to be “exciting” and worthy of great study and contemplation. People spend countless hours researching their family histories—they research on line, they go to libraries, they write letters, they interview grandma about the past, they will even journey half way across the continent to meet some long lost cousin so that they can find out more about their history.
When we study up on our family backgrounds its all about finding our roots and our place in our families. When we study up on our family’s history it gives us a sense of understanding regarding who we are and what shaped us to be the kind of people that we are today. When we study our family histories their stands out for us notable examples of people whom it would be good to be like, also, their stands out for us notable people whose examples and footsteps we should not follow in.
When I was in Seminary one of my assignments was to do a genogram. A genogram is a kind of genealogy except the goal is to analyze the relationships and patterns that are found in your family. It’s amazing what you learn about yourself when you study your family history in depth; you discover who the black sheep of the family have been, you discover hidden family secrets, you discover the unwritten rules of how your family works, you discover that generation after generation certain patterns emerge: whether it be a certain kind of cancer, mental illness, alcoholism, etc.
What’s my point: Given the fact that there is much to learn from our immediate family histories, there is also much for us to learn from the family histories that the Bible lists.
Today we are going to study Genesis 5-6:8 which details for us Adam’s family history
The goal of today’s study is for us to note the distinguishing marks of Adam’s line/family tree. But note this, we are of Adam’s line, we are the descendants of Adam, and so as we discover the distinguishing marks of Adam’s line, we will at the same time be learning about ourselves.
Distinguishing marks of Adam’s line and by extension us
I. Made in the image of God
This is what makes us special and distinguishes us from the animals.
Note: When we talk about being made in God’s image we are not talking about a physical likeness.
When we speak of being made in the image of God we are speaking of how we are in some way like God.
How is it then, that we are like God?
-when a person exercises patience that examples a trait that God us
-when a person creates/ makes/ invents something, they are in a small way doing God did on a large scale
-when we exercise “dominion” over some facet of this world, we are in a small way doing what God does on a large scale
-we are like God in that we are moral beings. Our capacity to choose good from evil. The key difference between us and God here is that as a moral being he does not and cannot do what is evil—we on the other hand….
Even though Adam was a sinner and had rebelled against God, he and his descendants—being us, still bear God’s image. In spite of every persons sinfulness we still reflect and example something of the person of God to others- yet not perfectly and definitely not as God intended.
When a person comes to Jesus in faith and repentance they become a new person and the Holy Spirit’s day by day work is this: to conform us to the image of Christ who perfectly reflected the person and image of God on this earth.
II. Another distinguishing trait of Adam’s line is this: All of his descendants are mortal: they all died (save one exception: Enoch)
8 times in our text we are faced with these words “And then he died”
We tend to get fixated on the great ages of the men of our text but note this: every last one of them, excluding one notable exception, died.
What is it that distinguishes Adam’s line and by extension us? Death. Death is a constant for all of us
Why is it that death is common experience? Sin.
God is true to his word: He told Adam: Eat of the forbidden fruit and you will die. As the scriptures say “The wages of sin is death”