Storytellers: Enoch

Storytellers: Enoch

Welcome:
Dialing the wrong phone number can be awkward, embarrassing, and sometimes downright frustrating. When a young man forgot to notify his grandmother of a change in his cell phone number before Thanksgiving, however, the result was touching. Wanda Dench texted a number that had originally been her grandson's, inviting him over for a Thanksgiving meal. Instead of her grandson, the text went to 17 year-old Jamal Hinton. The two figured out the mistake quickly, but Hinton asked if it was possible to "still get a plate." In grandmotherly fashion, Dench responded, "Of course you can. That's what grandmas do." The story went viral online, perhaps as a hint of joy during such a bitter election season. When asked about the encounter after Thanksgiving, the young man said, "I'm thankful for all the nice people in the world. I never met her … and she welcomed me into her house, so that shows me how great of a person she is."




Introduction:
Over the next several weeks, we are starting a new series called Storytellers.  it is a character study.  We will be looking through both Old and New Testaments to see how God used common people to share the story of redemption and grace.  Each person that we will look at is unique.  Their story is their own and is exclusive to them.  It is unlike any other story.  Their stories are exciting.  They are special.  Some of the stories, like the one we are looking at today are so unusual that it is simply unbelievable.  However, I believe that God’s Word is true and the stories in it are also true.  I also want us to know this morning that these stories are essential to the story of Jesus.  You see, each person, each character is telling a unique story that eventually points to the person of Jesus.  You see, their story is ultimately Jesus’ story.  It is all about Jesus.  

Friends, these are not supernatural beings we are talking about this morning.  These are humans made of flesh and blood.  They are just like you and me.  I say that to help you understand that you have a story today.  Your story is exclusive, exciting and essential.  Your story, if you let it, can point others to Jesus.  

That’s right, by the end of this series, I hope that you will understand how your story can reveal to your friends and co-workers the reality of Jesus’ life, death and resurrection.  

Your Story Is Exclusive, Exciting and Essential! 

Point:
Before we move on to the story, I want to address a common misconception in modern day Christianity.  The misconception is this, telling my story, my Jesus story is not elemental or fundamental to Christian living.  

Let’s be honest, be really honest with ourselves this morning.  It is my opinion that more than 80% of the people in this room did not share a shred of verbal Christian witness with anyone this year.  

Lifeway Christian Resources recently conducted a study.  This is what it says.  

The study conducted by LifeWay Research found 80 percent of those who attend church one or more times a month, believe they have a personal responsibility to share their faith, but 61 percent have not told another person about how to become a Christian in the previous six months.

We have, as Christians, made evangelism safe and unoffensive.  We say things like “i’ll pray for you” and count that as evangelism.  

We say things like “let me invite you to church” and call that evangelism.  

Friends, evangelism is really simple. It is sharing the story of how Jesus has impacted and transformed your life.  It is sharing your exclusive, exciting and essential story.  

“Telling your story is not just elemental to Christian living, it is the ESSENCE of Christian living.”

Let me say that again.

“Telling your story is not just elemental to Christian living, it is the ESSENCE of Christian living.”

A Common Misconception, “Telling My Story Is Not Elemental To Christian Living”.

Point:
So, over the next few weeks we will look at Scripture that backs up this thought of sharing our Jesus story as fundamental to the Christian walk.  Today, I want you to open your Bibles to Genesis 5:22-24.

Genesis 5:22-24 ESV
22 Enoch walked with God after he fathered Methuselah 300 years and had other sons and daughters. 23 Thus all the days of Enoch were 365 years. 24 Enoch walked with God, and he was not, for God took him.

Enoch Was A Storyteller! Let’s Examine Enoch’s…

I. Relationship vs. 24
Genesis 5:24 ESV
Enoch walked with God, and he was not, for God took him.

Point:
So, just who is this Enoch character.  First, the name “Enoch” is mentioned 4 times in Scripture.  The name is mentioned in both the Old and New Testaments.  The first time we hear the name Enoch, it is attached to Cain.  That’s right, the same Cain that murdered his own brother Abel.  Cain, after he was kicked out of the family took for himself a wife and they had a son.  They named him Enoch.  We don’t know much about this Enoch but we do know that his grandson was Lamech.  Lamech was a blood thirsty man whose entire life was set on fire by murder and revenge.  Let’s just say that at the time, Enoch was not who you would want to name your son after.  The son of Cain and the grandfather of Lamech.  

The Enoch we are talking about this morning is a different Enoch but of the same family tree.  The Enoch being discussed did not come from Cain’s side of the tree, but Cain’s third brother Seth.  

Genesis 4:25-26 ESV
25 And Adam knew his wife again, and she bore a son and called his name Seth, for she said, “God has appointed for me another offspring instead of Abel, for Cain killed him.” 26 To Seth also a son was born, and he called his name Enosh. At that time people began to call upon the name of the Lord.

Enoch, the Enoch of Seth’s tree, is the great-great-great-great grandson of Adam. Still, how would you like that to be your family tree.  Your great grandfather four times removed is the one responsible for sending humanity down the spiraling pit of sin and separation from God.  It is your family that committed the first murder.  You carry the same name is the first child of Cain and grandfather of the evil Lamech.  

That’s quite a story.  

Yet Enoch was different.  Different than his family and certainly different than the first Enoch we discover in Scripture.  Genesis tells us that this Enoch walked with God.  

That word “walked” is a Hebrew word.  It is הָלַך it is transliterated as halak and is pronounced haw-lak.  There are literally dozens of meanings for this word.  However, in this case the word means “went along continually”.  

Enoch went along continually with God.  There was never a minute that Enoch did not desire the presence of God.  Continually, day and night, the guy could not get enough of God.  

Enoch’s relationship with God helped him overcome his troubled and sad past.  Enoch knew that with God, his story could be transformed.  

Enoch had the sort of relationship with God that most of us want yet never have.  

Enoch’s Relationship Was…

Timeless

Point:
Enoch, according to Scripture wanted nothing more than to be with God.  There was no time that Enoch would not give God. There was nothing that could dissuade him from following God and walking with Him daily.  Enoch was hungry for God.  

Quote:
In The Dangerous Duty of Delight, pastor and theologian John Piper puts it this way: "God has...filled the human heart with longing. But we know not what we long for until we see the breathtaking God. This is the cause of universal restlessness. Hence the famous prayer of Saint Augustine: 'You made us for Yourself and our hearts find no peace till they rest in You.'"

Enoch had peace in his heart because he daily longed for God and God met his need daily. 

Enoch’s Relationship Was…

Transparent

Point:
Enoch walked with God.  That’s what Scripture says.  Walking with God is a deeply intimate experience.  God knows us, everything about us.  There is nothing that we can hide from Him.  Nothing that we can shield from His view.  Enoch walking with God meant that he came to God completely open and transparent.  Because of his humility, Enoch had a deeply intimate relationship with God. 

Enoch’s Relationship Was…

Transcendant 

Enoch’s walk was so good, so deep, so intimate that Scripture tells us that while he was walking with God that he was no more and that God simply “took him”.  

Hebrews 11:5 state this about our friend Enoch.  

Hebrews 11:5 ESV
By faith Enoch was taken up so that he should not see death, and he was not found, because God had taken him.

What does this mean?  It means that one day Enoch went for a walk with God and just kept walking.  His walk was so good that he skipped right over death and just kept on walking with God. 

Now that’s a story!  

The beauty of the Scripture in Hebrews is that there is no temporal agent attached to it.  Meaning that Enoch is still walking with God.  Talk about losing track of time.  Have you ever been there before?  You have so enjoyed spending time with someone that you did not want it to end?  Well that’s exactly what happened to Enoch and God.  They so enjoyed each other that they have continued the conversation and intimacy forever and ever and ever.  

I imagine that Enoch’s heart, if it could would have echoed the thought of the Psalmist.  

Psalm 63:1 ESV
O God, You are my God; I shall seek You earnestly; My soul thirsts for You, my flesh yearns for You, In a dry and weary land where there is no water.

Enoch Was A Storyteller! Let’s Examine Enoch’s…

I. Relationship vs. 24
II. Recognition Hebrews 11:5 ESV
Hebrews 11:5 ESV
By faith Enoch was taken up so that he should not see death, and he was not found, because God had taken him. Now before he was taken he was commended as having pleased God.

Illustration:
I was not a very good student.  I struggled throughout high school and parts of college.  Part of it was just plain old lazy.  Part of it was I was not a very good planner and organizer.  Part of it was that I have ADD.  I had a hard time paying attention and focusing.  All of these things pressed in together makes a perfect storm for bad grades.  

I remember taking Geometry my freshman year of high school.  I walked in the class already knowing that I was going to struggle.  The teacher, on the first day, gave out a list of expectations and goals that she was planning on meeting.  Immediately I felt overwhelmed and I had not even done a lick of homework.  I knew that I could not measure up to the standards that she had placed on the class.  Even worse, there were kids that seemed so confident in what she was asking.  

I stayed after class, which was a rare thing for me to do.  I needed help.  You see, I almost flunked my freshman year of high school and I needed to at a minimum get a D in the class to pass my freshman year.  I remember sitting on the other side of the desk from my teacher and I started to cry.  I guess that she felt bad for me.  

She looked at me and said “Stuart, Ill tell you what, I will start you not at a 0 for the class, I will start you with a 100 A+”.  I had an A in the class right then and there.  I didn’t do anything to earn it.  I certainly didn’t deserve it.  She just gave me an A out of the good grace of her heart.  You know what, with the pressure off and with her help, I kept that A.  It was the only A that I made that year.  

Point:
You see, Enoch lived with no pressure.  Enoch pleased God by trusting God.  Enoch was commended by God because he let God do all the heavy lifting.  He did not try to earn his salvation.  He did not try to impress God with his works.  He just relaxed and trusted God to meet His needs.  

Point:
I love how Hebrews reads.  Enoch was walking with God.  He didn’t die.  He went with God to be with him.  But…before he went on to be with God, he was recognized as one who pleased God.  

It is like God suddenly stopped and gave Enoch a tip of the cap.  

It sounds a lot like this piece of Scripture doesn’t it.  

Matthew 25:21 ESV
"The master was full of praise. 'Well done, my good and faithful servant. You have been faithful in handling this small amount, so now I will give you many more responsibilities. Let's celebrate together!'

Enoch Was A Storyteller! Let’s Examine Enoch’s…

I. Relationship vs. 24
II. Recognition
III. Routines Jude 1:14-15 ESV
Jude 1:14-15 ESV
“It was also about these that Enoch, the seventh from Adam, prophesied, saying, “Behold, the Lord comes with ten thousands of his holy ones, 15 to execute judgment on all and to convict all the ungodly of all their deeds of ungodliness that they have committed in such an ungodly way, and of all the harsh things that ungodly sinners have spoken against him.”

Point:
So we have pretty much covered Enoch the person.  The guy loved God.  He was a good guy.  He didn’t die and God enjoyed spending time with Him.  Enoch’s faith was so transcendent that he just skipped death altogether.  Pretty cool.  

Yet, Enoch was a Storyteller.  How do I know this?

Jude 1:14-15 ESV
“It was also about these that Enoch, the seventh from Adam, prophesied, saying, “Behold, the Lord comes with ten thousands of his holy ones, 15 to execute judgment on all and to convict all the ungodly of all their deeds of ungodliness that they have committed in such an ungodly way, and of all the harsh things that ungodly sinners have spoken against him.”

Today we don’t have enough time to read all the way through Jude.  However, as I am talking take a ganger through chapter one. Jude is warning God’s people against false teachers.  There are a lot of things said.  Yet, Jude reminds us that Enoch lived in a depraved generation of people.  He lived in the midst of wicked sinners in need of transformation.  

So, did Enoch sit idly by?

Did Enoch not want to offend anyone by telling them about God?

Was Enoch satisfied with praying for people and trusting that his good life would be a good enough witness to his peers?

Nope!  Enoch started telling a story.  He began to prophesy.  He stood for God, warned of coming judgement and hoped that the godless would become godly and the sinner would be saved.  What a brave guy.  Enoch walked with God but apparently it was not always sunshine and rainbows.  

The guy was unafraid and unashamed of what God was doing in his life.  He told his story and hoped that he might be used by God to transform lives around him.  

Enoch Routinely…

A. Prophesied (Spoke God’s Truth Boldly)

B. Prayed (Walked With God()

C. Praised (Worshipped God)

D. Pleased (Made God Proud)

Enoch was the first, the original story teller.  God did some marvelous things in his life and he bravely and confidently stood for Him.  Friends, you are a story teller as well.  To be an evangelist, all you have to know is your story and how God has transformed your life.  That’s it.  Be Enoch!  Follow his example.  Walk with God today.

Romans 10:14-15 ESV
“14 How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? 15 And how are they to preach unless they are sent? As it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!”


Tell Your Story Today!  

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