By faith Enoch was translated - It is said, in Genesis 5:24, that Enoch walked with God, and he was not, for God took him. Here the apostle explains what God's taking him means, by saying that he was translated that he should not see death; from which we learn that he did not die, and that God took him to a state of blessedness without obliging him to pass through death. See his history explained at large in the above place, in Genesis 5:22-24.
By faith Enoch was translated - The account of Enoch is found in Genesis 5:21-24. It is very brief, and is this, that “Enoch walked with God, and was not, for God took him.” There is no particular mention of his “faith,” and the apostle attributes this to him, as in the case of Abel, either because it was involved in the very nature of piety, or because the fact was communicated to him by direct revelation. In the account in Genesis, there is nothing inconsistent with the belief that Enoch was characterized by eminent faith, but it is rather implied in the expression, “he walked with God.” Compare 2 Corinthians 5:7. It may also be implied in what is said by the apostle Jude Jude 1:14-15, that “he prophesied, saying, Behold the Lord cometh with ten thousand of his saints,” etc. From this it would appear that he was a preacher: that he predicted the coming of the Lord to judgment, and that he lived in the firm belief of what was to occur in future times. Moses does not say expressly that Enoch was translated. He says “he was not, for God took him.” The expression “he was not,” means he was no more among people; or he was removed from the earth. “This” language would be applicable to any method by which he was removed, whether by dying, or by being translated. A similar expression respecting Romulus occurs in Livy (i. 16), Nec deinde in terris Romulus fuit. The translation of the Septuagint on this part of the verse in Genesis is, οὐχ εὑρίσκετο ouch heurisketo- “was not found;” that is, he disappeared. The authority for what the apostle says here, that he “was translated,” is found in the other phrase in Genesis, “God took him.” The reasons which led to the statement that he was transported without seeing death, or that show that this is a fair conclusion from the words in Genesis, are such, as these:
(1) There is no mention made of his death, and in this respect the account of Enoch stands by itself. It is, except in this case, the uniform custom of Moses to mention the age and the death of the individuals whose biography he records, and in many cases this is about all that is said of them. But in regard to Enoch there is this remarkable exception that no record is made of his death - showing that there was something unusual in the manner of his removal from the world.
(2) the Hebrew word used by Moses, found in such a connection, is one which would rather suggest the idea that he had been taken in some extraordinary manner from the world. That word - לקח laaqach- means “to take” - with the idea of taking “to oneself.” Thus, Genesis 8:20, “Noah took of all beasts and offered a burnt-offering.” Thus, it is often used in the sense of “taking a wife” - that is, to oneself Genesis 4:19; Genesis 6:2; Genesis 12:19; Genesis 19:14; and then it is used in the sense of “taking away;” Genesis 14:12; Genesis 27:35; Job 1:21; Job 12:20; Psalm 31:13; Jeremiah 15:15. The word, therefore, would naturally suggest the idea that he had been taken by God to himself, or had been removed in an extraordinary manner from the earth. This is confirmed by the fact that the word is not used anywhere in the Scriptures to denote a “removal by death,” and that in the only other instance in which it (לקח laaqach) is used in relation to a removal from this world, it occurs in the statement respecting the translation of Elijah. “And the sons of the prophets that were at Bethel, came forth to Elisha, and said to him, Knowest thou that the Lord “will take away” (לקח laaqach) thy master from thy head today?” 2 Kings 2:3, 2 Kings 2:5; compare Hebrews 11:11. This transaction, where there could be no doubt about the “manner” of the removal, shows in what sense the word is used in Genesis.
(3) it was so understood by the translators of the Septuagint. The apostle has used the same word in this place which is employed by the Seventy in Genesis 5:24 - μετατίθημι metatithēmiThis word means to transpose, to put in another place; and then to transport, transfer, translate; Acts 7:16; Hebrews 7:12. It properly expresses the removal to another place, and is the very word which would he used on the supposition that one was taken to heaven without dying.
(4) this interpretation of the passage in Genesis by Paul is in accordance with the uniform interpretation of the Jews. In the Targum of Onkelos it is evidently supposed that Enoch was transported without dying. In that Targum the passage in Genesis 5:24 is rendered, “And Enoch walked in the fear of the Lord, and was not, for the Lord did not put him to death” - לּה lo‘- ‹amiyt yityeh YahwehSo also in Ecclesiasticus or the Son of Sirach (49:14), “But upon the earth was no man created like Enoch; for he was taken from the earth.” These opinions of the Jews and of the early translators, are of value only as showing that the interpretation which Paul has put upon Genesis 5:2 is the natural interpretation. It is such as occurs to separate writers, without collusion, and thus shows that this is the meaning most naturally suggested by the passage.
That he should not see death - That is, that he should not experience death, or be made personally acquainted with it. The word “taste” often occurs in the same sense. Hebrews 2:9, “that he should taste death for every man;” compare Matthew 16:28; Mark 9:1; Luke 9:27.
And was not found - Genesis 5:24, “And he was not.” That is, he was not in the land of the living. Paul retains the word used in the Septuagint.
He had this testimony, that he pleased God - Implied in the declaration in Genesis 5:22, that he “walked with God.” This denotes a state of friendship between God and him, and of course implies that his conduct was pleasing to God. The apostle appeals here to the sense of the account in Genesis, but does not retain the very “words.” The meaning here is not that the testimony respecting Enoch was actually “given” before his translation, but that the testimony relates to his having “pleased God” before he was removed. “Stuart.” In regard to this instructive fragment of history, and to the reasons why Enoch was thus removed, we may make the following remarks:
(1) The age in which he lived was undoubtedly one of great wickedness. Enoch is selected as the only one of that generation signalized by eminent piety, and he appears to have spent his life in publicly reproving a sinful generation, and in warning them of the approaching judgment; Jude 1:14-15. The wickedness which ultimately led to the universal deluge seems already to have commenced in the earth, and Enoch, like Noah, his great-grandson, was raised up as a preacher of righteousness to reprove a sinful generation.
(2) it is not improbable that the great truths of religion in that age were extensively denied, and probably among other things the future state, the resurrection, the belief that man would exist in another world, and that it was maintained that death was the end of being - was an eternal sleep. If so, nothing could be better adapted to correct the prevailing evils than the removal of an eminent man, without dying, from the world. His departure would thus confirm the instructions of his life, and his removal, like the death of saints often now, would serve to make an impression which his living instructions would not.
(3) his removal is, in itself, a very important and instructive fact in history. It has occurred in no other instance except that of Elijah; nor has any other living man been transported to heaven except the Lord Jesus. That fact was instructive in a great many respects:
(a) It showed that there was a future state - another world.
(b) It showed that the “body” might exist in that future state - though doubtless so changed as to adapt it to the condition of things there.
(c) It prepared the world to credit the account of the ascension of the Redeemer. If Enoch and Elijah were removed thus without dying, there was no intrinsic improbability that the Lord Jesus would be removed after having died and risen again.
(d) It furnishes a demonstration of the doctrine that the saints will exist hereafter, which meets all the arguments of the sceptic and the infidel. One single “fact” overturns all the mere “speculations” of philosophy, and renders nugatory all the objections of the sceptic. The infidel argues against the truth of the resurrection and of the future state from the “difficulties” attending the doctrine. A single case of one who has been raised up from the dead, or who has been removed to heaven, annihilates all such arguments - for how can supposed difficulties destroy a well-authenticated “fact?”
(e) It is an encouragement to piety. It shows that God regards his friends; that their fidelity and holy living please him; and that “in the midst of eminent wickedness and a scoffing world it is possible so to live as to please God.” The conduct of this holy man, therefore, is an encouragement to us to do our duty though we stand alone; and to defend the truth though all who live with us upon the earth deny and deride it.
(4) the removal of Enoch shows that the same thing would be “possible” in the case of every saint. God could do it in other cases, as well as in his, with equal ease. That his friends, therefore, are suffered to remain on the earth; that they linger on in enfeebled health, or are crushed by calamity, or are stricken down by the pestilence as others are, is not because God “could” not remove them as Enoch was without dying, but because there is some important “reason” why they should remain and linger, and suffer, and die. Among those reasons may be such as the following:
(a) The regular operation of the laws of nature as now constituted, require it. Vegetables die; the inhabitants of the deep die; the fowls that fly in the air, and the beasts that roam over hills and plains die; and man, by his sins, is brought under the operation of this great universal law. It would be “possible” indeed for God to save his people from this law, but it would require the interposition of continued “miracles,” and it is better to have the laws of nature regularly operating, than to have them constantly set aside by divine interposition.
(b) The power of religion is now better illustrated in the way in which the saints are actually removed from the earth, than it would be if they were all transported. Its power is now seen in its enabling us to overcome the dread of death, and in its supporting us in the pains and sorrows of the departing hour. It is a good thing to discipline the soul so that it will not fear to die; it shows how superior religion is to all the forms of philosophy, that it enables the believer to look calmly forward to his own certain approaching death It is an important matter to keep this up from age to age, and to show to each generation that religion can overcome the natural apprehension of the most fearful calamity which befalls a creature - death: and can make man calm in the prospect of lying beneath the clods of the valley, cold, dark, alone, to moulder back to his native dust.
(c) The death of the Christian does good. It preaches to the living. The calm resignation; the peace; the triumph of the dying believer, is a constant admonition to a thoughtless and wicked world. The deathbed of the Christian proclaims the mercy of God from generation to generation, and there is not a dying saint who may not, and who probably does not do great good in the closing hours of his earthly being.
(d) It may be added that the present arrangement falls in with the general laws of religion that we are to be influenced by faith, not by sight. If all Christians were removed like Enoch, it would be an argument for the truth of religion addressed constantly to the senses. But this is not the way in which the evidence of the truth of religion is proposed to man. It is submitted to his understanding, his conscience, his heart; and in this there is of design a broad distinction between religion and other things. Men act in other matters under the influence of the senses; it is designed that in religion they shall act under the influence of higher and nobler considerations, and that they shall be influenced not solely by a reference to what is passing before their eyes, but to the things which are not seen.
There are so many who endure privation and pursue at considerable sacrifice a course which promises advantages in the future. They forego present comfort for a future inducement as an equivalent, but here Jesus presents eternal life as the reward of obedience, and if paltry things of earthly gain will be sacrificed for some future good, how much more should ease, pleasure, and present worldly advantages be sacrificed for the incomparable riches and glory of the future immortal life. Let not the sorcery of earthly enchantments steal the affections from God and harden the heart to eternal interest. Look at the things that are unseen. Enshrine Jesus in the heart. Love Him with your whole soul.—Letter 15a, November 15, 1871, to Edson and Emma White. Edson was 22 and Emma was 23. TDG 328.5Read in context »
Be ambitious, for the Master's glory, to cultivate every grace of character. In every phase of your character building you are to please God. This you may do; for Enoch pleased Him though living in a degenerate age. And there are Enochs in this our day. COL 332.1
Stand like Daniel, that faithful statesman, a man whom no temptation could corrupt. Do not disappoint Him who so loved you that He gave His own life to cancel your sins. He says, “Without Me ye can do nothing.” John 15:5. Remember this. If you have made mistakes, you certainly gain a victory if you see these mistakes and regard them as beacons of warning. Thus you turn defeat into victory, disappointing the enemy and honoring your Redeemer. COL 332.2
A character formed according to the divine likeness is the only treasure that we can take from this world to the next. Those who are under the instruction of Christ in this world will take every divine attainment with them to the heavenly mansions. And in heaven we are continually to improve. How important, then, is the development of character in this life. COL 332.3
The heavenly intelligences will work with the human agent who seeks with determined faith that perfection of character which will reach out to perfection in action. To everyone engaged in this work Christ says, I am at your right hand to help you. COL 332.4Read in context »
A few in every generation from Adam resisted his every artifice and stood forth as noble representatives of what it was in the power of man to do and to be, while Christ should co-operate with human efforts, to help man in overcoming the power of Satan. Enoch and Elijah are the correct representatives of what the race might be through faith in our Lord Jesus Christ. Satan was greatly disturbed because these noble, holy men were untainted amid the moral pollution surrounding them, perfecting righteous characters, and accounted worthy for translation to heaven. As they had stood forth in moral power, in noble uprightness, overcoming Satan's temptations, he could not bring them under the dominion of death. He triumphed that he had power to overcome Moses with his temptations, and that he could mar his illustrious character and lead him to the sin of taking to himself glory before the people which belonged to God. Con 26.1Read in context »
“Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God, and saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel.” Mark 1:14, 15. DA 231.1
The Messiah's coming had been first announced in Judea. In the temple at Jerusalem the birth of the forerunner had been foretold to Zacharias as he ministered before the altar. On the hills of Bethlehem the angels had proclaimed the birth of Jesus. To Jerusalem the magi had come in search of Him. In the temple Simeon and Anna had testified to His divinity. “Jerusalem, and all Judea” had listened to the preaching of John the Baptist; and the deputation from the Sanhedrin, with the multitude, had heard his testimony concerning Jesus. In Judea, Christ had received His first disciples. Here much of His early ministry had been spent. The flashing forth of His divinity in the cleansing of the temple, His miracles of healing, and the lessons of divine truth that fell from His lips, all proclaimed that which after the healing at Bethesda He had declared before the Sanhedrin,—His Sonship to the Eternal. DA 231.2Read in context »
His prayer is heard. While He is bowed in lowliness upon the stony ground, suddenly the heavens open, the golden gates of the city of God are thrown wide, and holy radiance descends upon the mount, enshrouding the Saviour's form. Divinity from within flashes through humanity, and meets the glory coming from above. Arising from His prostrate position, Christ stands in godlike majesty. The soul agony is gone. His countenance now shines “as the sun,” and His garments are “white as the light.” DA 421.1
The disciples, awaking, behold the flood of glory that illuminates the mount. In fear and amazement they gaze upon the radiant form of their Master. As they become able to endure the wondrous light, they see that Jesus is not alone. Beside Him are two heavenly beings, in close converse with Him. They are Moses, who upon Sinai had talked with God; and Elijah, to whom the high privilege was given—granted to but one other of the sons of Adam—never to come under the power of death. DA 421.2
Upon Mount Pisgah fifteen centuries before, Moses had stood gazing upon the Land of Promise. But because of his sin at Meribah, it was not for him to enter there. Not for him was the joy of leading the host of Israel into the inheritance of their fathers. His agonized entreaty, “I pray Thee, let me go over, and see the good land that is beyond Jordan, that goodly mountain, and Lebanon” (Deuteronomy 3:25), was refused. The hope that for forty years had lighted up the darkness of the desert wanderings must be denied. A wilderness grave was the goal of those years of toil and heart-burdening care. But He who is “able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think” (Ephesians 3:20), had in this measure answered His servant's prayer. Moses passed under the dominion of death, but he was not to remain in the tomb. Christ Himself called him forth to life. Satan the tempter had claimed the body of Moses because of his sin; but Christ the Saviour brought him forth from the grave. Jude 9. DA 421.3
Moses upon the mount of transfiguration was a witness to Christ's victory over sin and death. He represented those who shall come forth from the grave at the resurrection of the just. Elijah, who had been translated to heaven without seeing death, represented those who will be living upon the earth at Christ's second coming, and who will be “changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump;” when “this mortal must put on immortality,” and “this corruptible must put on incorruption.” 1 Corinthians 15:51-53. Jesus was clothed with the light of heaven, as He will appear when He shall come “the second time without sin unto salvation.” For He will come “in the glory of His Father with the holy angels.” Hebrews 9:28; Mark 8:38. The Saviour's promise to the disciples was now fulfilled. Upon the mount the future kingdom of glory was represented in miniature,—Christ the King, Moses a representative of the risen saints, and Elijah of the translated ones. DA 421.4Read in context »
In the study of the Bible the student should be led to see the power of God's word. In the creation, “He spake, and it was done; He commanded, and it stood fast.” He “calleth those things which be not as though they were” (Psalm 33:9; Romans 4:17); for when He calls them, they are. Ed 254.1
How often those who trusted the word of God, though in themselves utterly helpless, have withstood the power of the whole world—Enoch, pure in heart, holy in life, holding fast his faith in the triumph of righteousness against a corrupt and scoffing generation; Noah and his household against the men of his time, men of the greatest physical and mental strength and the most debased in morals; the children of Israel at the Red Sea, a helpless, terrified multitude of slaves, against the mightiest army of the mightiest nation on the globe; David, a shepherd lad, having God's promise of the throne, against Saul, the established monarch, bent on holding fast his power; Shadrach and his companions in the fire, and Nebuchadnezzar on the throne; Daniel among the lions, his enemies in the high places of the kingdom; Jesus on the cross, and the Jewish priests and rulers forcing even the Roman governor to work their will; Paul in chains led to a criminal's death, Nero the despot of a world empire. Ed 254.2
Such examples are not found in the Bible only. They abound in every record of human progress. The Vaudois and the Huguenots, Wycliffe and Huss, Jerome and Luther, Tyndale and Knox, Zinzendorf and Wesley, with multitudes of others, have witnessed to the power of God's word against human power and policy in support of evil. These are the world's true nobility. This is its royal line. In this line the youth of today are called to take their places. Ed 254.3Read in context »
I wish I could impress upon every worker in God's cause, the great need of continual, earnest prayer. They cannot be constantly upon their knees, but they can be uplifting their hearts to God. This is the way that Enoch walked with God.—The Review and Herald, November 10, 1885. Ev 681.1
Fence the Soul—There will be women who will become tempters, and who will do their best to attract and win the attention of men to themselves. First, they will seek to win their sympathy, next their affection, and then to induce them to break God's holy law. Those who have dishonored their minds and affections by placing them where God's Word forbids, will not scruple to dishonor God by various species of idolatry. God will leave them to their vile affections. It is necessary to guard the thoughts; to fence the soul about with the injunctions of God's Word; and to be very careful in every thought, word, and action not to be betrayed into sin.—The Review and Herald, May 17, 1887. Ev 681.2
Guarding the Safeguards—Our great adversary has agents that are constantly hunting for an opportunity to destroy souls, as a lion hunts his prey.... One safeguard removed from conscience, the indulgence of one evil habit, a single neglect of the high claims of duty, may be the beginning of a course of deception that will pass you into the ranks of those who are serving Satan, while you are all the time professing to love God and His cause. A moment of thoughtlessness, a single misstep, may turn the whole current of your lives in the wrong direction. And you may never know what caused your ruin until the sentence is pronounced, “Depart from Me, ye that work iniquity.”—Testimonies For The Church 5:397, 398 (1885). Ev 681.3Read in context »
The experience of Enoch and of John the Baptist represents what ours should be. Far more than we do, we need to study the lives of these men,—he who was translated to heaven without seeing death; and he who, before Christ's first advent, was called to prepare the way of the Lord, to make His paths straight. GW 51.1Read in context »
“Ye know,” Christ said, “that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great ones exercise authority over them. Not so shall it be among you: but whosoever would become great among you shall be your minister.” Matthew 20:25, 26, A.R.V. MH 478.1
Of all the gifts that heaven can bestow upon men, fellowship with Christ in His sufferings is the most weighty trust and the highest honor. Not Enoch, who was translated to heaven, not Elijah, who ascended in a chariot of fire, was greater or more honored than John the Baptist, who perished alone in the dungeon. “Unto you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on Him, but also to suffer for His sake.” Philippians 1:29. MH 478.2Read in context »
It is difficult to exercise living faith when we are in darkness and discouragement. But this of all others is the very time when we should exercise faith. “But,” says one, “I do not feel at such times like praying in faith.” Well, then, will you allow Satan to gain the victory, simply because you do not feel like resisting him? When he sees that you have the greatest need of divine aid, he will try the hardest to beat you back from God. If he can keep you away from the Source of strength, he knows that you will walk in darkness and sin. There is no sin greater than unbelief. And when there is unbelief in the heart, there is danger that it will be expressed. The lips should be kept in as with bit and bridle, lest by giving expression to this unbelief you not only exert an injurious influence over others, but place yourselves upon the enemy's ground. ML 14.2
If we believe in God, we are armed with the righteousness of Christ; we have taken hold of His strength.... We want to talk with our Saviour as though He were right by our side.... ML 14.3
It is our privilege to carry with us the credentials of our faith,—love, joy, and peace. When we do this, we shall be able to present the mighty arguments of the cross of Christ. When we learn to walk by faith and not by feeling, we shall have help from God just when we need it, and His peace will come into our hearts. It was this simple life of obedience and trust that Enoch lived. If we learn this lesson of simple trust, ours may be the testimony that he received, that he pleased God. ML 14.4
If we commit the keeping of our souls to God in the exercise of living faith, His promises will not fail us; for they have no limit but our faith. ML 14.5Read in context »
We must have a close and intimate connection with heaven, if we bear the grace of godliness. Jesus must be a guest in our homes, a member of our households, if we reflect His image and show that we are sons and daughters of the Most High. Religion is a beautiful thing in the home. If the Lord abides with us, we shall feel that we are members of Christ's family in heaven. We shall realize that angels are watching us, and our manners will be gentle and forbearing. We shall be fitting up for an entrance into the courts of heaven by cultivating courtesy and godliness.... ML 98.2
Enoch walked with God. He honored God in every affair of life. In his home and in his business he inquired, “Will this be acceptable to the Lord?” And by remembering God and following His counsel, he was transformed in character, and became a godly man, whose ways pleased the Lord. We are exhorted to add to godliness, brotherly kindness. O how much we need to take this step, to add this quality to our characters! ... We should have that love for others that Christ has had for us. A man is estimated at his true value by the Lord of heaven. If he is unkind in his earthly home, he is unfit for the heavenly home. If he will have his own way, no matter whom it grieves, he would not be content in heaven, unless he could rule there. The love of Christ must control our hearts.... Seek God with a broken and contrite spirit, and you will be melted with compassion toward your brethren. You will be prepared to add to brotherly kindness, charity, or love.... ML 98.3
It will bring heaven nearer to us. We may have the sweet peace and consolation of God in doing this work. These steps will take us into the atmosphere of heaven. ML 98.4Read in context »
To comprehend and enjoy God is the highest exercise of the powers of man. This may be attained only when our affections are sanctified and ennobled by the grace of Christ.... In Christ was the brightness of His Father's glory, the express image of His person. Said our Saviour, “He that hath seen me, hath seen the Father.” John 14:9. In Christ is the life of the soul. In the outgoings of our hearts to Him, in our earnest, affectionate yearnings for His excellence, in our eager searching into His glory, we find life. In communion with Him we eat the bread of life. OHC 61.2
When we allow objects of minor importance to absorb our attention, to the forgetfulness of Christ, turning away from Him to accept other companionship, we set our feet in a path which leads away from God and from heaven. Christ must be the central object of our affections, and then we shall live in Him, then we shall have His spirit.... OHC 61.3
What constitutes the brightness of heaven? In what will consist the happiness of the redeemed? Christ is all in all. They will gaze with rapture unutterable upon the Lamb of God. They will pour out their songs of grateful praise and adoration to Him whom they loved and worshiped here. That song they learned and began to sing on earth. They learned to put their trust in Jesus while they were forming characters for heaven. Their hearts were attuned to His will here. Their joy in Christ will be proportioned to the love and trust which they learned to repose in Him here. OHC 61.4
God must be ever in our thoughts. We must hold converse with Him while we walk by the way, and while our hands are engaged in labor. In all the purposes and pursuits of life we must inquire, What will the Lord have me to do? How shall I please Him who has given His life a ransom for me? Thus may we walk with God, as did Enoch of old; and ours may be the testimony which he received, that he pleased God. OHC 61.5Read in context »
Enoch's life and character, which were so holy that he was translated to heaven without seeing death, represent what the lives and characters of all must be, if, like Enoch, they are to be translated when Christ shall come. His life was what the life of every individual may be if he closely connects with God. We should remember that Enoch was surrounded with influences so depraved that God brought a flood of waters on the world to destroy its inhabitants for their corruption.... OHC 278.2Read in context »
The wickedness of men had reached such a height that destruction was pronounced against them. As year after year passed on, deeper and deeper grew the tide of human guilt, darker and darker gathered the clouds of divine judgment. Yet Enoch, the witness of faith, held on his way, warning, pleading, entreating, striving to turn back the tide of guilt and to stay the bolts of vengeance. Though his warnings were disregarded by a sinful, pleasure-loving people, he had the testimony that God approved, and he continued to battle faithfully against the prevailing evil, until God removed him from a world of sin to the pure joys of heaven. PP 87.1
The men of that generation had mocked the folly of him who sought not to gather gold or silver or to build up possessions here. But Enoch's heart was upon eternal treasures. He had looked upon the celestial city. He had seen the King in His glory in the midst of Zion. His mind, his heart, his conversation, were in heaven. The greater the existing iniquity, the more earnest was his longing for the home of God. While still on earth, he dwelt, by faith, in the realms of light. PP 87.2
“Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.” Matthew 5:8. For three hundred years Enoch had been seeking purity of soul, that he might be in harmony with Heaven. For three centuries he had walked with God. Day by day he had longed for a closer union; nearer and nearer had grown the communion, until God took him to Himself. He had stood at the threshold of the eternal world, only a step between him and the land of the blest; and now the portals opened, the walk with God, so long pursued on earth, continued, and he passed through the gates of the Holy City—the first from among men to enter there. PP 87.3Read in context »
Enoch was a marked character, and many look upon his life as something far above what the generality of mortals can ever reach. But Enoch's life and character, which were so holy that he was translated to heaven without seeing death, represent the lives and characters of all who will be translated when Christ comes. His life was what the life of every individual may be if he will live near to God. We should remember that Enoch was surrounded by unholy influences. The society around him was so depraved that God brought a flood of waters on the world to destroy its inhabitants for their corruption. RC 307.3Read in context »
Character Perfected by Enoch and Elijah—1874—Some few in every generation from Adam resisted his every artifice and stood forth as noble representatives of what it was in the power of man to do and to be—Christ working with human efforts, helping man in overcoming the power of Satan. Enoch and Elijah are the correct representatives of what the race might be through faith in Jesus Christ if they chose to be. Satan was greatly disturbed because these noble, holy men stood untainted amid the moral pollution surrounding them, perfected righteous characters, and were accounted worthy for translation to heaven. As they had stood forth in moral power in noble uprightness, overcoming Satan's temptations, he could not bring them under the dominion of death. He triumphed that he had power to overcome Moses with his temptations, and that he could mar his illustrious character and lead him to the sin of taking glory to himself before the people which belonged to God.—The Review and Herald, March 3, 1874. 3SM 146.5Read in context »
Cain Filled With Doubt and Madness—Satan is the parent of unbelief, murmuring, and rebellion. He filled Cain with doubt and with madness against his innocent brother and against God, because his sacrifice was refused and Abel's accepted. And he slew his brother in his insane madness (The Review and Herald, March 3, 1874). 1BC 1087.1
15. Mark of Cain—God has given to every man his work; and if any one turns from the work that God has given him, to do the work of Satan, to defile his own body or lead another into sin, that man's work is cursed, and the brand of Cain is placed upon him. The ruin of his victim will cry unto God, as did the blood of Abel (The Review and Herald, March 6, 1894). 1BC 1087.2
Any man, be he minister or layman, who seeks to compel or control the reason of any other man, becomes an agent of Satan, to do his work, and in the sight of the heavenly universe he bears the mark of Cain (Manuscript 29, 1911). 1BC 1087.3
25. Seth More Noble in Stature Than Cain or Abel—Seth was of more noble stature than Cain or Abel, and resembled Adam more than any of his other sons. The descendants of Seth had separated themselves from the wicked descendants of Cain. They cherished the knowledge of God's will, while the ungodly race of Cain had no respect for God and His sacred commandments (Spiritual Gifts 3:60). 1BC 1087.4Read in context »
9. Linking One's Self With Holy Spirit Means Success—The success of the ministry of Elijah was not due to any inherited qualities he possessed, but to the submission of himself to the Holy Spirit, which was given to him as it will be given to all who exercise living faith in God. In his imperfection man has the privilege of linking himself up with God through Jesus Christ (Manuscript 148, 1899). 2BC 1037.1
9, 15. Power United With Tender Compassion—Elisha received a double portion of the spirit that had rested on Elijah. In him the power of Elijah's spirit was united with the gentleness, mercy, and tender compassion of the Spirit of Christ (Letter 93, 1902). 2BC 1037.2
11-15 (Zechariah 4:6). Deviation Disqualifies for Service—Henceforth Elisha stood in the place of Elijah. He was called to the position of highest honor because he had been faithful over a few things. The question arose in his mind, Am I qualified for such a position? But he would not allow his mind to question. The greatest qualification for any man in a position of trust is to obey implicitly the Word of the Lord. Elisha might exercise his reasoning ability on every other subject but the one that would admit of no reasoning. He was to obey the Word of the Lord at all times and in all places. Elisha had put his hand to the plow, and he would not look back. He revealed his determination and firm reliance upon God. 2BC 1037.3
This lesson is for us to study carefully. We are in no case to swerve from our allegiance. No duties that God presents before us should cause us to work at cross-purposes with Him. The Word of God is to be our counselor. It is only those who render perfect and thorough obedience to God that He will choose. Those who follow the Lord are to be firm and straightforward in obeying His directions. Any deviation to follow human devising or planning disqualifies them for being trustworthy. Even if they have to walk as did Enoch,—with God alone,—his children must separate from those who do not obey Him, who show that they are not in vital connection with Him. The Lord God is a Host; and all who are in His service will realize the meaning of His words to Zerubbabel, “Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, saith the Lord of hosts” (The Youth's Instructor, April 28, 1898). 2BC 1037.4
15. Lessons from Elijah and Elisha—The history of Elijah and Elisha needs to be brought out in clear lines, that our people may understand the importance of the work of reform to be carried on in this age. Oh, that our people might have the assurance that their feet are standing on the sure foundation! 2BC 1037.5
The lessons to be learned from the life work of Elijah and Elisha mean much to all who are striving to plant the feet of men and women on the eternal Rock. The workers must humble their own hearts if they would understand God's purposes for them; they must themselves strive in the truest sense if they would influence others to enter the strait gate. The presentation of the truth must be made with grace and with power to those who stand in need of light and uplifting (Letter 30, 1912). 2BC 1037.6Read in context »
We are to obey the laws of His kingdom, making ourselves all that it is possible for us to be. Earnestly we are to cultivate the highest powers of our being, remembering that we are God's property, God's building. We are required to improve every day. Even in this world of sin and sorrow, we may, by earnest, persevering effort, rise to the highest spiritual efficiency.... We are to please God. This we may do; for Enoch pleased God, though living in a degenerate age. And there are Enochs in this our day. SD 314.2
The human house, God's building, His temple, requires close, vigilant, watchful guardianship. With David we can exclaim, “I am fearfully and wonderfully made.” God's workmanship is to be preserved, that it may be revealed to the heavenly universe and to the apostate race that men and women are temples of the living God. SD 314.3
The perfection of character which God requires is the fitting up of the whole being as a temple for the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. The Lord requires the service of the entire human machinery. He desires men and women to be all that He has made it possible for them to be. It is not enough for certain parts of the machinery to be used. All parts must be brought into action, or the service is deficient.... SD 314.4
The physical life is to be carefully educated, cultivated, and developed, that through men and women the divine nature may be revealed in its fullness. God expects men to use the intellect He has given them. He expects them to use every reasoning power for Him. They are to give the conscience the place of supremacy that has been assigned it. The mental and physical powers, with the affections, are to be so cultivated that they can reach the highest efficiency.7Manuscript 130, 1899. SD 314.5Read in context »
Enoch was a holy man. He served God with singleness of heart. He realized the corruptions of the human family, and separated himself from the descendants of Cain, and reproved them for their great wickedness. There were those upon the earth who acknowledged God, who feared and worshiped him. Yet righteous Enoch was so distressed with the increasing wickedness of the ungodly, that he would not daily associate with them, fearing that he should be affected by their infidelity, and that his thoughts might not ever regard God with that holy reverence which was due his exalted character. His soul was vexed as he daily witnessed their trampling upon the authority of God. He chose to be separate from them, and spent much of his time in solitude, which he devoted to reflection and prayer. He waited before God, and prayed to know his will more perfectly, that he might perform it. God communed with Enoch through his angels, and gave him divine instruction. He made known to him that he would not always bear with man in his rebellion—that his purpose was to destroy the sinful race by bringing a flood of waters upon the earth. 3SG 54.1Read in context »
Enoch faithfully rehearsed to the people all that God had revealed to him by the Spirit of prophecy. Some believed his words and turned from their wickedness to fear and worship God. SR 59.1Read in context »
The power of Christ, the crucified Saviour, to give eternal life, should be presented to the people. We should show them that the Old Testament is as verily the gospel in types and shadows as the New Testament is in its unfolding power. The New Testament does not present a new religion; the Old Testament does not present a religion to be superseded by the New. The New Testament is only the advancement and unfolding of the Old. Abel was a believer in Christ, and was as verily saved by His power as was Peter or Paul. Enoch was a representative of Christ as surely as was the beloved disciple John. Enoch walked with God, and he was not, for God took him. To him was committed the message of the second coming of Christ. “And Enoch also, the seventh from Adam, prophesied of these, saying, Behold, the Lord cometh with ten thousands of His saints, to execute judgment upon all.” Jude 1:14, 15. The message preached by Enoch and his translation to heaven were a convincing argument to all who lived in his time. These things were an argument that Methuselah and Noah could use with power to show that the righteous could be translated. 6T 392.1
That God who walked with Enoch was our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. He was the light of the world then just as He is now. Those who lived then were not without teachers to instruct them in the path of life; for Noah and Enoch were Christians. The gospel is given in precept in Leviticus. Implicit obedience is required now, as then. How essential it is that we understand the importance of this word! 6T 392.2
The question is asked: What is the cause of the dearth in the church? The answer is: We allow our minds to be drawn away from the word. If the word of God were eaten as the food for the soul, if it were treated with respect and deference, there would be no necessity for the many and repeated testimonies that are borne. The simple declarations of Scripture would be received and acted upon. 6T 392.3Read in context »
The knowledge of God that works transformation of character is our great need. If we fulfill His purpose, there must be in our lives a revelation of God that shall correspond to the teaching of His word. 8T 329.1
The experience of Enoch and of John the Baptist represents what ours should be. Far more than we do, we need to study the lives of these men—he who was translated to heaven without seeing death, and he who, before Christ's first advent, was called to prepare the way of the Lord, to make His paths straight. 8T 329.2Read in context »
“Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.” Matthew 5:8. For three hundred years Enoch had been seeking purity of heart, that he might be in harmony with heaven. For three centuries he had walked with God. Day by day he had longed for a closer union; nearer and nearer had grown the communion, until God took him to Himself. He had stood at the threshold of the eternal world, only a step between him and the land of the blest; and now the portals opened, the walk with God, so long pursued on earth, continued, and he passed through the gates of the holy city, the first from among men to enter there. 8T 331.1
“By faith Enoch was translated that he should not see death; ...for before his translation he had this testimony, that he pleased God.” Hebrews 11:5. 8T 331.2
To such communion God is calling us. As was Enoch's must be their holiness of character who shall be redeemed from among men at the Lord's second coming. 8T 331.3Read in context »
“Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God” (Matthew 5:8). How would they see God?—in the way that Enoch saw Him. They had the privilege of walking and talking with God. By faith Enoch lived in the presence of God three hundred years. By faith he saw the faith of Jesus. He was taken into special favor with Him. The priests and rulers needed just such an experience as Enoch had. They needed a continual sense of the presence of God. O what riches of grace the Lord longed to bestow upon the favored people of God. It is represented in the call to the supper prepared for them, “All things are ready: come” (chap. 22:4).—Manuscript 96, September 23, 1897, “The Jew's Rejection of Christ.” TDG 275.4Read in context »
Enoch not only meditated and prayed, and put on the armor of watchfulness, but he came forth from his pleadings with God to plead with his fellow men. He did not mask the truth to find favor with unbelievers, thus neglecting their souls. This close connection with God gave him courage to work the works of God. Enoch walked with God and “had the testimony that his ways pleased God.” This is the privilege of every believer today. It is man dwelling with God, and God taking up His abode with man. “I in them, and thou in me,” says Jesus. To walk with God and have the witness that their ways please Him is an experience not to be confined to Enoch, to Elijah, to patriarchs, to prophets, to apostles, and to martyrs. It is not only the privilege but the duty of every follower of Christ to have Jesus enshrined in the heart, to carry Him with them in their lives; and they will indeed be fruit-bearing trees.—Manuscript 43, August 2, 1900, “The Prophet Enoch.” UL 228.4Read in context »