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If ever the life of man deserved to be computed by years, it was certainly the lives of men such as these. And all the days that Adam lived were nine hundred and thirty years; and he died. And all the days of Jared were nine hundred sixty and two years; and he died. And all the days of Methu selah were nine hundred sixty and nine years; and he died. Such was the lengthened age of three of the oldest individuals of the human race; and yet, long as were their lives, five times longer already have they slept in their graves; and how much longer they may have to rest ere the heavens be no more, no man nor angel can declare. If a man live many years, and rejoice in them all, yet let him remember the days of darkness, for they shall be many. Jared was the father of the singular person mentioned in my text, and Methuselah, the oldest man that ever lived, was his son; so that he was placed between the two oldest individuals of the human race. He was, nevertheless, the most singular of the three; for though he lived only as many years as there are days in the year, yet he obtained what was better than life. He never dropt the mantle of mortality; but was translated to heaven without tasting of death. And Enoch walked with God and he was not, says Moses; for God took him.
These words contain chiefly two things,-First, The singu lar manner in which Enoch spent his life, he walked with God; Secondly, The signal reward by grace conferred upen him, he was not; for God took him. After attempting shortly to illustrate these, we shall attend to the consequences deducible from the translation of Enoch; and, Lastly, Endeavour to incite you to follow his example, that you may finally meet with him.
First, We are to endeavour to illustrate briefly the particu lar manner in which Enoch spent his life,—he walked with God. This is a singular mode of expression, or it was an uncommon way in which Enoch spent his three hundred and sixty-five years. Of how few could it now be said of the inha bitants of Campsie, or of the county of Dumbarton, or the county of Lanark, of the kingdom of Great Britain,-the first in the now known world,-that they walked with God. It would be reckoned strange phraseology, were it even said of any minister of Jesus Christ, that he walked with God. Strange though it would now seem in modern ears, yet true it was, that Enoch walked with God. To prove its correctness, nearly the same thing is affirmed of his great-grandson, Noah. These are the generations of Noah: Noah was a just man, and perfect in his generations; and Noah walked with
God. Though the account given us of Noah corresponds in one particular with that given us of Enoch, yet the latter may, in technical language, be said to be the concrete,—the former the abstract. All that is said of Enoch is, that he walked with God; whereas, in addition to this, in the case of Noah, it is said he was just and perfect. It is not thereby meant to be conveyed, that he was more perfect than Enoch; for it is said of Job, that he was a perfect and an upright man. The single expression employed to describe the character of Enoch, groups, we conceive, every thing affirmed of every other saint. Though is declared concerning Enoch, that he walked with God, it is not, therefore, to be understood, that he walked with him as one man walks with another. This would be a very incorrect notion with respect to Him who was, and is, and is to come; whom no man hath seen, or can see, and live. Nor is it literally to be understood, perhaps even for a single time, of His eternal Son, who often appeared to the patriarchs, and who accompanied Abraham toward Sodom, and heard and listened to the earnest and repeated intercessions of the father of the faithful for that devoted city. What is said of Zacharias and Elizabeth, in, perhaps, a lower degree, that they were both righteous before God, walking in all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord blameless, will serve to explain this singular language. Enoch walked in the law of the Lord, or according to the law of the Lord, which is a transcript of His will. Coming unto God, he believed that He is, and that He is the rewarder of them that diligently seek Him. He believed in His divine perfections and attributes: -1. His Self-Existence; 2. Absolute Independence; 3. His Sovereignty; 4. Unsuccessive Eternity, or Immortality; 5. Immensity, or Infinity; 6. Omnipresence; 7. Omnipotence, Infinite Power, or Almightiness; 8. Omniscience; 9. Incorporeality, Spirituality, Immateriality, or Absolute Simplicity; 10. Incomprehensibility, or Unsearchableness; 11. Immutability, or Unchangeableness; 12. Benevolence, or Goodness; 13. Justice; 14. Truth, or Faithfulness; 15. Holiness, or Spotless Purity; 16. Wisdom; 17. Mercy; 18. Love; and all His other perfections, natural and moral, communicable and incommunicable; and he might, by the Holy Spirit, know more than we can enumerate. We do not affirm, that either Enoch, or any of the saints, even in New Testament times, when the day has broken, and the shadows flown away, when life and immortality are brought to light by the Gospel, see distinctly all these, far less all the divine perfections and attributes; but we do affirm, most positively, that Enoch, and
every one sanctified in Christ Jesus, who strives to be perfect, believes that their Father in heaven is perfect. Enoch believed all the leading and essential doctrines of Christianity; for in embryo it was as old as the first promise of redemption. He felt himself to be a sinner. He believed that he could only be justified freely by grace, as declared by Paul, (Rom. iii. 24-26.) He rested on the seed of the woman as the Saviour from sin and death. He depended on the Holy Spirit as his regenerator and sanctifier. Before his translation, he had this testimony, that he pleased God. But without faith it is impossible to please Him; for he that cometh to God acceptably, in every country, and every age, must believe that He is, and that He is the rewarder of them that diligently seek Him. He believed in a future state, and that the Messiah was to be the judge of the quick and of the dead. The apostle Jude informs us, that Enoch, the seventh from Adam, prophesied, saying, Behold, the Lord cometh with ten thousand of his saints, to execute judgment upon all, and to convince all that are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have ungodly committed, and of all their hard speeches which ungodly sinners have spoken against Him. How similar this to the language of the Apocalypse,Behold, He cometh with clouds, and every eye shall see Him, and they also which pierced Him; and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of Him. We do not pretend to say how Enoch received all his knowledge, nor even how much he had; but it is certain, that like every child, he was taught of God, though not by His written Word, yet surely by His Holy Spirit. There can be no doubt, that Adam, who was his contemporary for three hundred years, would teach him many of the mysteries of creation, providence, and redemption. With eyes, perhaps, suffused with tears, he would tell this docile, ingenuous, and amiable youth, how fair and fragrant everything was in the earthly Paradise. What a glorious sight he beheid when he was called into existence, and the heavens were shining in all their glory, and the earth smiling in all her beauty. How the trees were laden with every fruit, fair to the sight, fragrant to the smell, and delicious to the taste; how his ears were ravished with the harmony of the birds, and the melody of the spheres. What pleasure thrilled through every nerve when the Creator brought him a partner, and joined, in indissoluble union with him, her who excelled every other creature in beauty and affection, and who was bone of his bone, and flesh of his flesh. How he instinctively knew the natures, and correctly gave names to every creature. How the wolf dwelt
with the lamb, and the leopard lay down with the kid; and the calf and the young lion fed harmoniously together. How every animal frolicked round man as his friend, and paid instinctively subjection to him as his lord. He would narrate to him how the sun did not smite by day, nor the moon by night; how the air was so nicely tempered, that there was neither excessive heat nor piercing cold; that there were no snow-capped mountains, no ice-bound poles, nothing like Terra del Fuego; that there were no earthquakes, nor tornadoes, nor water-spouts; but the rain distilling, gently as the dew; that there were no storms, nor tempests; but the wind gently whispering through the fragrant and verdant foliage of Eden. He would inform him, that there were then no doubts, nor fears, nor griefs, nor sorrows, nor diseases, nor deaths. He would, with rapture, tell his listening pupil, what sweet converse he had with the ever-blessed Jehovah and His dearly beloved Son. How he rejoiced to hear His voice walking in the garden in the cool of the day; but with infinitely intenser anguish than he can feel who has, by prodigality and sensuality, squandered his paternal inheritance, and is become a fugitive and a vagabond in the earth, would his heart throb with anguish, and the tears roll down his furrowed cheeks, when he told him of that fatal act by which he and his fair consort were expelled from these delightful abodes. The good old father would communicate to him, with pleasure, all the experience of more than six hundred years. How would their Sabbaths roll gently on while He repeated and explained to him the first declaration of the Covenant of Redemption. He would declare to him how he and bis helpmeet, when called, came tremblingly forth from the trees of the garden in which they had hid themselves,how their bosoms heaved, and their knees smote upon each other, when they heard the primeval curse pronounced upon the serpent, how their hearts revived, and their countenances brightened, when they heard the promise of a deliverer from sin and death announced,-and how they bore, with patience and resignation, the curse denounced against them, because they had sinned. Much had the Father of mankind, by this time, experienced of the good and the evil, the joys and the griefs, the hopes and the fears of human life; and not knowing the day of his death, he would be extremely solicitous, that the generations to come, might learn and know the Lord's doings, and the operations of His hands. Instructed by this experienced teacher, and, above all, by the Teacher sent from God, this young scholar would grow in grace, and in the knowledge of Jesus Christ. Having it recommended, and
seeing it exemplified, he would love God with all his heart, and soul, and strength, and mind, and his neighbour as himself. Acquainted with God, and reconciled to Him by the death of His Son, to be accomplished in due time, he would walk with Him in all the ways of holy obedience. Though every head of a family was prophet, and priest, and king therein, for there was, as yet, no order of priesthood,-yet Enoch was a preacher of righteousness, even of that righteousness which is by faith. He was a public teacher, and, therefore, he who taught a man should not steal, being born of God, would not steal; and he who taught a man should not commit adultery, would not commit adultery. He shewed his faith by his works, and did not cry, Lord, Lord, without doing the things he had commanded. He was a consistent, active believer. He was possessed of that charity which suffereth long and is kind, which envieth not, which vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil, rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth; beareth all things, believ eth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things. He spoke evil of no man, he wronged no man; he walked uprightly, and wrought righteousness, and spoke the truth in his heart. He did not backbite with his tongue, nor do evil to his neighbour, nor take up a reproach against his neighbour. Whatsoever he would that others should do unto him, he did so likewise unto them. He loved his enemies, he blessed them that cursed him, he did good to them that hated him, and prayed for them that despitefully used him and persecuted him. He feared God and kept his commandments. He did justly, loved mercy, and walked humbly with God.
Do not imagine, that we are sitting as judges on the com parative attainments of believers, whether under the Adamic, Noahic, Abrahamic, the Mosaic, or Christian dispensations. It is not our business to compare the grace of saints, or the glory of the redeemed. We do not assert, that his faith exceedeth that of Abraham, the friend of God; or that he exceeded Isaac and Jacob in that in which they excelled; or that his temperance was superior to that of the persecuted Joseph; or that he was meeker than Moses, or more patient than Job, or felt more for the preservation and extension of true religion than Eli; or that his heart was more in accordance with God's than David's, his wisdom greater than Solomon's, his fortitude greater than Daniel's, or his labours in, and travels for the cause of Christ than Paul's, or his love than John's, or that he excelled any of the saints in that grace which was most