Enoch, a Man Who Walked with God -- By: Timothy J. Cole

Journal: Bibliotheca Sacra
Volume: BSAC 148:591 (Jul 1991)
Article: Enoch, a Man Who Walked with God
Author: Timothy J. Cole


Enoch, a Man Who Walked with God

Timothy J. Cole

Senior Pastor, Grace Bible Church
St. Petersburg, Florida

The account of Enoch, the seventh from Adam, is placed in the third section of Genesis1 and is announced by the major structural word of the book תּוֹלְדוֹת, generally expressed as “these are the generations of….” However, as Woudstra has demonstrated,2 the תּוֹלְדוֹת structure announces the historical development from the ancestor mentioned and should be understood as, “this is what became of (persons name),” or “this is what happened to the line of (persons name).” Genesis 5:1 would then read, “This is the book of what became of the family tree of Adam.”

What did become of Adam’s family tree? Whatever happened to the human race? Did God’s promise of death (2:16–17) come true? Whatever became of the curse (3:19)? Would man, due to his rebellion, die after all? Before 5:1 no one had died (though Abel was murdered by his brother and Lamech killed a man for wounding him and a boy for striking him, 4:23).

The theme of chapter 5 is the end of life. “No reader of Genesis 5…fails to be impressed by the recurrent phrase ‘And he died,’ which baldly and emphatically concludes the entry for each of these antediluvians. The whole movement of the regular form of these notices is toward death.”3 In other words the answer to the

questions, Whatever happened to Adam’s family tree? or Whatever happened to the human race? is that they all died. Did God’s promise of death (“in the day that you eat from it you shall surely die,” 2:17) ever come true? Yes, Adam’s line died successively. Whatever became of the curse? “The answer is that, in spite of human achievements (the achievements of chapter 4), the curse of death reigned as king from Adam’s time on through the generations.”4

The account of Enoch, then, the one who walked with God, is placed in the midst of the reign of death. This theme of death...

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