He Always Does

4 The Nephilim were on the earth in those days—and also afterward—when the sons of God went to the daughters of humans and had children by them. They were the heroes of old, men of renown. Genesis 6:4

While this passage is a mystery to many, I will not dwell on the details as smarter minds than mine have studied it and been stumped. R.C. Sproul Jr. thus summarized it, and it makes sense:

When we consider the context of this text we can better understand what Moses is explaining. In previous chapters we are given a glimpse of two competing lines, the godly line of Seth and the wicked line of Cain. Having established the antithesis in the garden, after affirming that there would be a constant struggle between the seed of the woman and the seed of the serpent we are given snapshot pictures of each of these armies. We see Seth’s line about the business of exercising dominion, in submission to the Lord. We see Cain’s line dishonoring the law of God and making names for themselves. But the future is not mere co-existence between the two lines. The drama builds toward the great crisis of Noah’s flood right here in chapter 6. The great change, what creates the great downward spiral of humanity on the earth is that the two lines come together as one. That is, the godly line of Seth, the sons of God, seeing how attractive are the daughters of men, the wicked line of Cain, decide to take them as wives. The end result, however, isn’t mere dilution. It’s not that the now joined line becomes morally lukewarm, but that evil spreads, grows, deepens. This shouldn’t surprise as for as Chuck Swindoll reminds us, if you drop a white glove in the mud, the mud doesn’t get all glovey.

So, in summary, the passage as I understand it, is akin to being unequally yoked as stated in the New Testament. They were marrying of a different faith altogether. The evil in the world continued to spread as a result of the union between Seth’s lineage and his brother Cain’s lineage.

The bad news is, it only gets worse from here.

The good news, however, is that God will have a plan for it all. He always does.

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What’s Your Something?

6 When human beings began to increase in number on the earth and daughters were born to them, 2 the sons of God saw that the daughters of humans were beautiful, and they married any of them they chose. 3 Then the Lord said, “My Spirit will not contend with humans forever, for they are mortal; their days will be a hundred and twenty years.” Genesis 6:1-3

Originally men and women were living 900 years or more. That was too much time for them to cause trouble, and trouble was what they caused. The problem now was the men were taking – and probably not asking – whomever they wanted and however many they wanted. There was little to no restraint. So God had to cut short their lives to 120 years. Still, it was probably 40 years too many. Mankind wasn’t 3000 years old and God was saying he wouldn’t contend with us forever.

That’s what happens when you get bored with life. You lose your focus and meaning for life. You find things that satisfy your carnal nature. You don’t have purpose.

But I think this speaks to a bigger point: purpose. Without purpose in life, we drift and fade away. We all need something greater than us to focus on, a project, a passion, a ministry. That “something” is different with each of us because we have different gifts and likes.

What’s your “something”?

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The Epitaph

21 When Enoch had lived 65 years, he became the father of Methuselah. 22 After he became the father of Methuselah, Enoch walked faithfully with God 300 years and had other sons and daughters. 23 Altogether, Enoch lived a total of 365 years. 24 Enoch walked faithfully with God; then he was no more, because God took him away. Genesis 5:21-24

I’d like to circle back to Enoch if I may. Enoch is one of two men in the Bible who did not die; Elijah was the other. What was it about these men that they were give extra special treatment? They never experienced death and yet they are in heaven. Enoch walked faithfully with God. That was his claim to fame, which is not a bad claim I might add. That would be an awesome epitaph on your tombstone, wouldn’t it? But he didn’t die. Instead, God recorded it in the eternal Word of God for everyone to read, not just a few hundred people in a lifetime walking past a graveyard who may not even notice the tombstone.

I can’t seem to pinpoint anything about those two men, apart from them being men of God, that distinguishes them, but does there need to be a reason or two for that? Not really because God is sovereign and can do whatever He wants whenever he wants.

I guess the bottom line is to live in such a way that you are living your epitaph, whatever that may be.

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And Then He Died…

3 When Adam had lived 130 years, he had a son in his own likeness, in his own image; and he named him Seth. 4 After Seth was born, Adam lived 800 years and had other sons and daughters. 5 Altogether, Adam lived a total of 930 years, and then he died.

6 When Seth had lived 105 years, he became the father of Enosh. 7 After he became the father of Enosh, Seth lived 807 years and had other sons and daughters. 8 Altogether, Seth lived a total of 912 years, and then he died.

9 When Enosh had lived 90 years, he became the father of Kenan. 10 After he became the father of Kenan, Enosh lived 815 years and had other sons and daughters. 11 Altogether, Enosh lived a total of 905 years, and then he died.

12 When Kenan had lived 70 years, he became the father of Mahalalel. 13 After he became the father of Mahalalel, Kenan lived 840 years and had other sons and daughters. 14 Altogether, Kenan lived a total of 910 years, and then he died.

15 When Mahalalel had lived 65 years, he became the father of Jared. 16 After he became the father of Jared, Mahalalel lived 830 years and had other sons and daughters. 17 Altogether, Mahalalel lived a total of 895 years, and then he died.

18 When Jared had lived 162 years, he became the father of Enoch. 19 After he became the father of Enoch, Jared lived 800 years and had other sons and daughters. 20 Altogether, Jared lived a total of 962 years, and then he died.

21 When Enoch had lived 65 years, he became the father of Methuselah. 22 After he became the father of Methuselah, Enoch walked faithfully with God 300 years and had other sons and daughters. 23 Altogether, Enoch lived a total of 365 years. 24 Enoch walked faithfully with God; then he was no more, because God took him away.

25 When Methuselah had lived 187 years, he became the father of Lamech. 26 After he became the father of Lamech, Methuselah lived 782 years and had other sons and daughters. 27 Altogether, Methuselah lived a total of 969 years, and then he died.

28 When Lamech had lived 182 years, he had a son. 29 He named him Noah and said, “He will comfort us in the labor and painful toil of our hands caused by the ground the Lord has cursed.” 30 After Noah was born, Lamech lived 595 years and had other sons and daughters. 31 Altogether, Lamech lived a total of 777 years, and then he died.

32 After Noah was 500 years old, he became the father of Shem, Ham and Japheth. Genesis 5:3-32

Back then people lived much longer lives than we do now. But one thing that each of these verses says is, “and then he died.” Why is that significant? It’s a direct and poignant contradiction to the lie that the Serpent told Eve before she ate fruit from the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil. “You will not surely die.” And yet they all died, except for Enoch who was taken up.

What are we to learn from all this? First, God’s word is true. When he makes a pronouncement, it’s for a reason. Secondly, the serpent is a liar, always has been, always will be. The lies he uses are often subtle and half-truths. Lastly, there are a lot of unnamed men and women in the Bible. All the sons and daughters that went unlisted here are known to God. You are known to God. I am known to God. The things you do and the things I do are known to God. Likewise, what we don’t do but know we should do are also known to God.

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God’s Design

2 He created them male and female and blessed them. And he named them “Mankind” when they were created. Genesis 5:2

Once again, God reiterated the plan for marriage: one man and one woman. With their union they would be able to procreate or as was the verbiage in Genesis 1:28 to multiply. Thousands of years later we find ourselves at the tail end of the sexual revolution where anything goes. That certainly wasn’t by God’s design nor was it His intention. Unfortunately we’re also reaping the harvest of those sins: disease, dissatisfaction with normal relations, and a militant opposition to the truth.

Where is this all going and what are we to do about it? I’m afraid that unless the Lord intervenes, it doesn’t look pretty for this society. Still, we are to pray for those who are more easily influenced by its teaching: the little ones. The societal norms we’re leaving them are opposed to the truth. They need to be protected from much of their teaching in the classroom, in their music, and on TV. Admittedly, it is an uphill battle, but we do have a God who wants desperately to draw others to Himself.

Do what we can but leave the worrying in God’s hands. It’s best that way.

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A Day of Thanks

This is the written account of Adam’s family line.

When God created mankind, he made them in the likeness of God. Genesis 5:1

This verse is repeated from Genesis 1:27. It reminds us early on that we are products and creations of God. We are not self-made. We didn’t get here on our own, we didn’t become who we are on our own, and we certainly won’t make it to heaven on our own.

Today is a day of thanksgiving to God, thanks for creating us, thanks for this life, thanks for the many many blessings we experience every day.

Take the time also to thank someone meaningful in your life today.

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The First Narcissist

23 Lamech said to his wives,

“Adah and Zillah, listen to me;
wives of Lamech, hear my words.
I have killed a man for wounding me,
a young man for injuring me.
24 If Cain is avenged seven times,
then Lamech seventy-seven times.” Genesis 4:23-24

Lamech would be considered the first narcissist in recorded history. He brags about killing a man. There was a reason God put a mark on Cain, but Lamech believes he’s worse than Cain. Either that or he just wanted to be treated differently.

You cannot get ahead in life by boasting about egregious sin. You see the conceit in parades and with Hollywood starlets. They think their sin will go unpunished because they don’t believe they’ll ever be called to account. Those who have gone before them know the truth. They too will soon know the truth firsthand.

So, while it looks like the “good guys” have their backs up against the wall, not to worry. The Lord sees it all. They won’t be smiling and boasting on the day of judgment. They want a world without God, they’ll soon get it, but it won’t be to their liking in the least.

Cheer up, Brothers and Sisters, your redemption draws nigh.

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An Undeserving Legacy

20 Adah gave birth to Jabal; he was the father of those who live in tents and raise livestock. 21 His brother’s name was Jubal; he was the father of all who play stringed instruments and pipes. 22 Zillah also had a son, Tubal-Cain, who forged all kinds of tools out of bronze and iron. Tubal-Cain’s sister was Naamah. Genesis 4:20-22

Many years have passed since Eve gave birth to Cain. Already knowledge is being passed down, and people are beginning to become more and more creative. After all, not everyone can be gardeners or shepherds. So we see a musician, a blacksmith, and a migrant farmers from this Lamech’s family. All very different skills using very different materials. Early on we see God blessing people who should not be blessed.

Fast forward a few thousand years and see how society and ideas have evolved. Even within families, the kids have different tastes and desires for education and training. Some are happy to be in the same job for 40 years or more. Others are born leaders and rise to the top fast. Some are curious, while others have never left the county they grew up in.

Thank the Lord for the diverse world we live in. As God blessed the first generations of humans, they passed some of their traits on to hundreds of generations later.

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Lamech

18 To Enoch was born Irad, and Irad was the father of Mehujael, and Mehujael was the father of Methushael, and Methushael was the father of Lamech.

19 Lamech married two women, one named Adah and the other Zillah. Genesis 4:18-19

Here we see Lamech departing from the norm by marrying two women. At least it’s the first recorded instance of it. By him having two wives, we can already tell he marches to a different drummer, something we’ll continue to see a bit later. Doing things differently isn’t wrong if it stays within God’s moral code.

You could make a case that all of the Old Testament prophets did things a bit differently than the people around them, but generally they were speaking on behalf of God so their moral code was directly in line with His. How they proclaimed their message was always different, but the message was the same.

Lamech probably figured out that two wives were more than he could handle. It was never God’s intention for man to marry more than one woman, and vice versa. God put certain rules in place to protect us from unnecessary pain and grief. Monogamy with the opposite sex is one such rule. When we stray from that Godly norm, we risk hurting ourselves, others, and society as a whole.

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