And he named him Noah, saying, "May this one comfort us in the labor and toil of our hands caused by the ground that the LORD has cursed."
1 Corinthians 15:50). Yet a link between life here and life above. Enoch translated (Hebrews 11:5). The living man passed into the presence of God. How, we need not care to know. But we know why. He "walked with God." Who would not covet this? Yet it may be ours. What then was that life? Of its outward form we know nothing. But same expression (Genesis 6:9) tells us that Noah's was such. Also Abraham's, "the friend of God" (Genesis 17:1); and St. Paul's (Philippians 1:21); and St. John (1 John 1:3) claims "fellowship with the Father" not for himself only (cf. John 14:23).
I. ESSENTIAL FEATURES OF A WALK WITH GOD. Not a life of austerity or of contemplation, removed from interests or cares of world. Noah's was not; nor Abraham's. Nor a life without fault. Elijah was "of like passions as we are;" and David; and St. John declares, 1 John 1:8-10.
1. It is a life of faith, i.e. a life in which the word of God is a real power. Mark in Hebrews 11. how faith worked in different circumstances. To walk with God is to trust him as a child trusts; from belief of his fatherhood, and that he is true. With texts before us such as John 3:16; 1 John 1:9; 1 John 2:2, why are any not rejoicing? Or with such as John 4:10; Luke 11:13, why are any not asking and receiving to the full? God puts no hindrance (Revelation 3:20). But
(1) too often men do not care. To walk with God is of less importance than to be admired of men.
(2) If they do care, they often will not take God's way. The simple message (2 Corinthians 5:20; 1 John 5:11) seems too simple. They look for feelings, instead of setting God's message before them and grasping it.
2. To walk with God implies desire and effort for the good of men. In an ungodly world Enoch proclaimed the coming judgment (Jude 1:14; cf. Acts 24:25). Spiritual selfishness often a snare to those who have escaped the snare of the world. It is not the mind of Christ. It springs from weakness of faith. Knowing the gift so dearly purchased, so freely offered to all, our calling is to persuade men. Not necessarily as teachers (James 1:19), but by intercession and by loving influence.
III. ENOCH WAS TRANSLATED. But apostles and saints died. Yet think not that their walk with God was less blessed. Hear our Lord's words (John 11:26), and St. Paul (2 Timothy 1:10). Hear the apostle's desire (Philippians 1:23). Enoch walked with God on earth, and the communion was carried on above. Is not this our Savior's promise? (John 14:21-23; John 17:24). Death is not the putting off that which is corruptible; it is separation from the Lord. Assured that we are his forever, we may say, "O death, where is thy sting?" - M.
This same shall comfort us concerning our work and toil of our hands.I. THE HARDNESS AND DIFFICULTY OF LIFE. These words are the words of parents. Lamech, "the powerful," is not ashamed to confess that he needs comfort; and when this child comes to him he accepts him as a Divine gift, as a commissioned, competent, and thrice-welcome messenger of comfort from God.
II. THE COMFORT THAT COMES INTO THE WORLD WITH CHILDREN. These words of Lamech are the permanent inscription in the horoscope which parents everywhere and always see over the cradle of the latest born. There is a bright prophecy of God concerning the future in this invincible hopefulness of the parental heart.
III. THE SECURITY WE HAVE FOR THIS IN THE GREAT PACT OF OUR REDEMPTION. Our Noah has been born; the Rest-giver, strong Burden bearer, all-pitying and all-suffering Saviour. Noah was a preacher of righteousness, but Jesus Christ brings and gives righteousness, instilling it into every believing heart.
(A. Raleigh, D. D.)
I. When our Lord appeared among men the world was in almost as sad and hopeless a condition as when Lamech looked around him. Among the Gentiles there was ignorance, darkness, and false imaginations; among the chosen people there Was hardness and impenitence. Christ comforted His disciples after His resurrection by raising up the temple of their wrecked faith, as He raised again the temple of His own body. He comforted them with the assurance that their faith was not in vain, that He had the keys of death and hell, and was able to succour to the uttermost those who trusted in Him.
II. The risen Christ comforted also the fathers of the ancient covenant. Moses and Elias appeared unto Him on Tabor, speaking with Him of the things concerning His passion. The ancient patriarchs could not enter into heaven till the gates were opened by the cross of Christ, and the handwriting that was against all sinners was taken away.
III. The resurrection of Christ is a joy and comfort to us also —
1. Because in Him a way of safety was opened to the world.
2. Because He will repay a hundredfold all that is done for him.
(S. Baring Gould, M. A.)
Homilist.I. THE DEEPER MEANING OF THE GENEALOGICAL LISTS OF SCRIPTURE. They serve to tell us not only —
1. Of the physical interdependence of the race, awakening thus our attention to the great problem of heredity; but
2. Of the moral variety of the race, bringing us face to face with human free will; and
3. Of the great glory of the race. There are names, like mountain peaks, of spiritual grandeur; they find their apex in the Name which is above every name.
II. THE MERCIFUL DEALING OF GOD WITH A SINFUL WORLD. Samples of God's education of man by —
3. Manifold discipline.
III. THE TRANSCENDENT SUPERIORITY OF OUR PRIVILEGES. In the advent of Jesus Christ —
1. We find no disappointment;
2. We have profound satisfaction.
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