THE CO DUCT A D E D OF E OCH. BY J.
Gen. v. 24. And Enoch walked with Gody and he was not for God took him.
i HE account of men before the flood presents a melancholy picture of human nature. There was indeed a pious Seth, in whose day men be? gan to call upon the name of the Lord ; but they were soon corrupted by the female descendants of Cain, who are called the daughters qfmcn There was also a pious Enoch, who walked with God, and he was not ifor God took Jiini. Let us consider, first, the conduct of Enoch 5 and, secondly, his end.
|2j8 Enoch's conduct and end, I. The conduct of enoch. Enoch walked with God in the way of pure andundefiled religion; which implies friendship, |)urity, and obedience. Can two walk together except they he agreed? Amos iii. 3. We avoid the company of men whom we do not esteem. We carefully shun pur enemies ; but we love to walk with friends. Friendship implies mutual love; and there is a
mutual love between God and good men. We love him, because he first loved its. 1 John iv. 19, Enoch enjoyed friendship with God, through the promised Deliverer'^ for a throne of grace was &et up for guilty man, when God said to the serpent, I will put enmity hetiveen thee and the woman, and hetiveen thy seed and her seed; it shall ^ruise thy head, and thou shall bruise his keeh Gen. iii. 15. Friendship with God, through Jesus Christ, is one of the greatest blessings that man can enjoy. It is productive of substantial happiness, ai)d everlasting honour. But, how amazing it is that themost high God should stoop so low as to make a worm his friend! What ho* uour this confers upon tlie creatures! What abundant cause have the friends of God to unite in blessing and praising his holy name ! O be .careful to preserve friendship with God, and
Enoch's conduct and end. ¦ t^f then yoTi may say with David, / will not be nfraid of ten thousand of the people, that have set themselves against nieroundabout!Vs2L\. iii.6. Walking with God implies pm'ity. God is perfectly holy ; and he cannot walk with the unholy. This is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth, 1 John i. 5, 6. Sinners are said to be afar off from God^ but saints are brought nigh. Deeply impres* «ed with this subject, David said, Thou art not a God that hath pleasure in wickedness : neiihef shall evil dwell with thee. Psal. v. 4. Evil can iro more abide in the presence of God, than
darkness can abide in the presence of the sun ; so that it is extremely absurd to think of walk-iug with God in a state of impurity. Ik must be allowed, however, that evil may remain in some good men, who walk with God ; but it is not predominant. Evil in them is under the control of grace, and they may be called holyi because holinessis the predominant principle in their Jiearts. They direct all to God. They love him at all. times, and honour him in all things. Evil is their grief and burden, and they earnestly seek a/w// conformity to the image of God.
i28 Enoch's conduct a^j-d end. To walk with God implies obedience. Enoch had this testimony that he pleaded God. The holiness of his heart produced holiness in his life. He walked with God in the discharge of every duty which God required. Thus Hezekiah walked in health and strength, and when sickness came, he besought the Lord to remember it: / beseech thee O Lord, remember novi how I have walked before thee in truth, and with a perfect heart;, and have done that zvhich was good in thy sight. Isa. xxxviii. 3. The riiari who walks with God, makes no ostentatious shew of piety, but is found serving the Lord zvitk all humility of mind. Acts xx. 19. He is re^ signed to the divine will, and is contented in e\ery situation. Devotion both private and public is delightful to him. He walks in all the ordinances of religion^ honouring, and enjoying the means of grace. He retreats from the world, and all its frantic ways ; and mixes with men only upon necessary occasions. When these occasions are over, he quickly returns lo his God, and cleaves to him with full pur-
pose of heart. He owns the authority of Godj Walks \n imitation of Godj and enjoys God lis his portion. Let Us persevere in this holy 'Vialking, both in prosperity and in adversity^ in honour and in disgrace, in life and in death;
Enoch's conduct and end. 129 Wiiere he goes let us humbly follow, as the Israelites followed the cloud and pillar of fire in the wilderness ; and we may rest assured that God will guide us to the promised land. God walks with us, to direct our stops, to defend us in danger, and to comfort us in distress. While he is near we are safe. 1 have set the Lord alwai/s before me : because he is at mil right hand 1 shall not be moved. Psal. xvi. 8. We often repent of having walked with unholy men ; but we shall never repent of having walked with God. The more closely We walk with God in the paths of holiness, the more delightful are his ways; but the man who walks merely in the paths of outward and formal obedience, is a stranger to those joys which accompany the life and power of religion. II. The end of enoch. The end of Enoch is expressed in two particulars : He ivas not ; for God took him. Enoch Avas not any longer an inhabitant of this lower world ; he had left it to return no more. He left his relations, his friends, and his enemies. His pious friends might seek him for counsel and encouragement, as the sons of
130 Enoch's conduct and end. the prophets sought Elijah, upon the mountains of Israel ; hut he was not. His enemies might seek hhn with envious and malicious designs, against his person and character; but he was not. vSoon it will be said of us, ihet/ are not. Death is a final departure out of this world ; and in a short time we must all depart! The apostle Paul longed to depart, and to be with Christ ; and when death drew near, he said, The time of my departure is at hand. 2 Tim. iv. 6. At death our earthly connections are broken, our business is ended, and our race is run. Happy will it be if we arrive at the mark, and gain the prize! Enoch had been a fine example to his family, to the church, and to the world ; but he was not. How soon we lose examples of piety \ Let us imitate and highly prize them for their works' sake ! Enoch was a prophet: but prophets must die. Your fathers, where are they : and the prophets do they live for ever ? Zech. i . 5t. Prize faithful ministers. You will not have them long; they will soon depart out of your bight, and you will hear their voice no more. God took Enoch out of a world of snares, temptations, and afflictions. When a good man dies all these are left behind. The world
Enoch's conduct ajjd end. 131 probably had used him ill ; but God took him out of the reach of ill usage. He had fought and conquered, and God took him to a state of peace and glory. He had walked with God
on earth, and God took him to live with him in heaven. Heaven is a place where all good men meet after death. God takes them to behold his glory, to sing his praise, and to enjoy his perfections. What a glorious assembly! Enoch was made fit for that place, and God took him to reside there for ever ! When wicked men die, devils take them. They are children of the devil, and he is suffered to take his own. Good men are children of God, and they are taken to dwell with their heavenly Father. Heaven is their home, and they will reside there when the system of nature is destroyed, and when the visible heavens and earth have passed away. O may we be found there when we are lost amongst men ! Ood took Enoch out of the world by ^ translation. By faith Enoch was translated that he should not see death ; and he was not found, because God had translated him. Heb. xi. 5. The circumstances of his translation are not recorded. Job Orton says, "This was probably done in a public manner, on some solemn occas2
132 Enoch's conduct and end, sion ; by which God testified his regard to his singular piety, and comforted the hearts of good and pious men with the hope|g|[ future happiness, when those great cakimities, of "which he prophesied, should come." He was taken up, body and soul, without seeing death. o doubt a great change passed upon his body to make it fit for the heavenly world ; for flesh mid blood, in its present state, cannot inherit the kingdom of God. 1 Cor. xv. 50. It was an
easy matter for God, whose power is unlimited, to translate Enoch, and to change his natural body to a spiritual body. The same power will be employed at the last day, in raising the dead and making the bodies of the saints meet for the heavenly inheritance. O let us admire and adore the Lord God omnipotent ! We cannot expect a translation without seeing deatli ; but, if we walk with God, we may expect a deliverance from this present world, and an abundant entrance into the holiest place. Death will find us out ; but he with whom we walk will not forsake us in that awful hour. Every pious man may say with the Psalmist^ Though I uaJk through the valley ojthe shadoy) of death, 1 ivillfear no evil : for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me. Psal. xxiii. 4.
E OCHS CO DUCT A D E D. 133 God requires us to walk with him ; and that which is a duty, is a glorious privilege! Let us now begin to walk with God; and though the way be narrow, let us cheerfully go forward, without tuining either to the right hand or to the left. The journey will soon end; the reward will soon be given. In the mean time God will uphold and ble*s us in the way. Every new day will lead us to new enjoyments; and the nearer we approach the heavenly country, the more glorious prospects will open to our view. All the glorified human spirits in heaven, have walked with God on earth. Let us follow their bright example, that we may overtake them in the skies. Wicked men may hold us in contempt; but God, our father and our friend, will
cheer us with his love. Hold out a little longer, and thine eyes shall see the King in his beauty: they shall behold the land that is very far off. Isa. xxxiii. 17. Amen.
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