THE MEN OF GOD BEFORE THE FLOOD
TEXT – Genesis 5:1-8, 19-32
INTRO. – God has had his men in every age. God will not leave this world without a witness to himself. Here in Genesis 5 we see the history of those who loved God from Adam to the flood. The flood came when the godly line of Seth found here in Genesis 5 began to mix with the ungodly line of Cain found in Genesis 4:16-24. The cause of the flood is given in Geneis 6:1-3. God’s people, the salt of the earth who were the moral and spiritual preservative against sin, began to mix with the world and lost their power and purpose. God says “as it was in the days of Noah so shall it be in the days of the coming of the Son of Man” so we will see this mixing repeated in the last days.
As God’s people begin to allow the world to set their standards of what is right and wrong, dress, habits, and morals rather than allow the Word of God to set them we step a little closer to the same conditions that brought the flood.
Thank God that there are still a few people who love and serve Him. Genesis 5 lists the names of ten men from Adam to the flood who got right with God and lived for him during those dark days. The men list in Genesis 5 were godly for several reasons.
1. They are separated from those listed in Genesis 4 where we find the godless line of Cain.
2. The names of these ten men have godly meanings.
3. Five of these men are mentioned with a bit of detail and all said of them says they were godly.
LET US LOOK BRIEFLY AT FIVE OF THESE MEN AND SEE THE MESSAGE THAT GOD HAS FOR US.
I. ADAM — WHEN I THINK OF ADAM I THINK OF DEATH – Genesis 5:1-2
I Corinthians 15:22 says,” … in Adam all die”. Genesis 5 is one of the saddest chapters in the Bible. It is like walking through a cemetery and reading the names on the tombstones. Death is the end of the sad story of sin. God told Adam that in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die. Adam ate and Adam died. His family died. We are by birth and by nature children of Adam. Seth was born in the image and likeness of his father Adam and Adam died (5:5), and Seth died (5:8), and we will die.
This chapter teaches me the great truth that no matter how long you live you are going to die. This chapter also teaches the truth that no matter how long you live. you will be in eternity a lot longer than you were here in time. Notice verses 5,8,11,14,27. Here we find people who lived many years and yet they died. The oldest lived almost a thousand years and yet he has been in eternity for at least five thousand years and will be there forever.
The one sin of Adam (they both had the same name according to Genesis 5:2 until Adam the man called Adam the female Eve) led to the deaths of all these others. See James 1:15. When I think of Adam I think of death.
II. SETH — WHEN I THINK OF SETH I THINK OF THE INFLUENCE
OF A GODLY MAN – Genesis 5:3-7
Genesis 4:26 shows the influence of Seth upon his son. We often fail to realize the influence of a man upon his family for God or against God. We see a genealogy here that is like a iron chain with one link influencing the next. One break would have affected the whole chain. Because of the godliness of Seth he influenced his descendants who influenced their descendants. If Seth had become like Cain his brother, there would not have been men like Enoch and Noah years later.
ILL.- I had the privilege to pastor a rural church that was over 120 years old. This church was unique in that it had several generations of families attending. I was surprised to realize that families where the parents were faithful to all the services of the church had an influence over the years on their children’s families and their grandchildren’s families to do likewise. Families who attended only Sunday morning services or were irregular in their attendance seemed to reproduce these habits in the families of their children and grandchildren. There were exceptions to the rule but they were few. When I think of Seth I think of the influence of a man upon his family.
III. METHUSELAH — WHEN I THINK OF METHUSELAH I THINK OF
THE MERCY OF GOD – Genesis 5:21,22,27
When I think of Methuselah I am reminded of the mercy of God. Did you ever wonder why God allowed him to live to be the oldest man who ever lived? If you get a pencil and paper and do some figuring you will find from this chapter and others that Adam lived until Methuselah was 243 years old. Noah lived until Abraham was 53 years old. You will find that Methuselah lived until the 600th year of Noah.
The name “Methuselah” means “when he dies it shall be sent”. It was in the 600 year of Noah states Genesis 7:11 that the flood came. God said in effect that as long as this man lives I’ll spare the world but when he dies judgment will be sent. Every year that Methuselah lived show the mercy and patience of God. See I Peter 3:20 and II Peter 3:9
But one day this man died and judgment came. See Genesis 7:11. God allowed Methuselah to live to be the oldest man who ever lived so as to show his mercy and long-suffering. If the mercy of God only lasted the 1656 years from the birth of Adam until the flood and there has been over 4000 years since the flood, this world is long overdue for judgment. Hebrews 1:2 speaks of “these last days”! We had better watch the heavens and live pure lives for the Second Coming is certainly near.
IV. ENOCH — WHEN I THINK OF ENOCH I THINK OF A LIVING A
HOLY LIFE – Genesis 5: 21 – 24
Genesis 5:21-22 tells us that Enoch was converted at the age of 65 when his son Methuselah was born and he walked with God after his conversion for 300 years.
I believe he was brought to God by the prophecy that God had placed on the name of his son. He never knew how long his son would live but he knew when his son died judgment was coming and so he got right with God while there was time.
A birth brought Enoch to the Lord.
A death brought Isaiah to the Lord. See Isaiah 6:1
Enoch walked with God for 300 years. Only two people are said to have walked with God. One was Enoch and the other was Noah. See Genesis 5:22,24 and Genesis 6:9 Both lived before the flood.
Genesis 17:1 speaks of walking before God. Abraham did this.
Deut. 13:14 speaks of walking after God.
Col. 2:6 speaks of walking in God.
But Enoch walked with God.
Some people claim they just cannot live for God in this age. Enoch walked with God before the day of Pentecost, before the day of the church, before the day of the Bible, before the day of gospel music and he did it for 300 years. If he could walk with God for 300 years under such circumstances, surely you and I can walk with God for 20 to 50 years today with all we have.
What does it mean to walk with God?
It is a walk of faith – See Hebrews 11:6
It is a walk of being pleasing to God – See Hebrews 11:6
It was a walk of steadfastness.
It was a walk of agreement – See Amos 3:3
Enoch walked with God and was not for God took him.
Before the flood God raptured Enoch.
Before the Captivity God raptured Elijah.
Before the Great Tribulation God will rapture the Church.
Heb. 11:5 adds something that Genesis 5 does not. Hebrews 11:5 adds that “he was not found”. This tells me that somebody missed him. Let each of us live so as to be missed. If you died would you be missed? By whom? I knew a man who regularly prayed for me three to four hours at a time. When he died I missed him.
Robert Murray McCheyne used to say live so as to be missed and when he died at the age of 29 all of Scotland mourned his passing.
Live a life so holy and when you die you will be missed. Missed by the people of God. Missed by the world. Missed by the Enemy.
V. NOAH — WHEN I THINK OF NOAH I THINK OF THE SAFETY FOUND
IN CHRIST – Genesis 5:28-29 and Genesis 6:1,2,5,8-9
Noah built the only way through the wrath of God at the
flood. Jesus is the only way through the wrath of God for the lost who face a Christless eternity.
The Ark is a type or picture of Christ.
The ark was a God planned salvation.
The ark was an adequate salvation.
The ark was a free salvation.
The ark was the only salvation
Jesus’ coming was a God planned Salvation. See John 3:16
Jesus is an adequate Salvation. See Hebrews 7:25
Jesus offers a free Salvation. See Revelation 22:17
Jesus is the only way of Salvation. See Acts 4:12
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