|Volume 21 Number 2 February 2019||
Ernest S. Underwood
Matthew 1:21 states, “And she will bring forth a Son, and you shall call His name JESUS, for He will save His people from their sins.” His name is Jesus, and He has quite a story.
One of His twelve closest companions denied Him. Another betrayed Him to His enemies. Yet another refused to believe in His resurrection and doubted until he could see with his own eyes.
After His church was established, one congregation lost the love it had at the beginning. Another congregation claimed to be alive, but it was dead. Another congregation made Him so sick, He wanted to throw up.
Yet, millions have followed Him through persecution and death. His name is beyond all others and none other can save. His name is Jesus. He is the Christ. He loves you, and He died to save you. Isn’t it a shame that some seem to be so ashamed of Him that they call their religious bodies after someone or something else? It was He who said, “Upon this rock I will build my church.” It was He who also said, “He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned.”
Do you believe in Him? Have you been baptized for the forgiveness of your sins? Are you a member of His church, or are you a member of some manmade denomination?
Enoch Walked with God
Some things hinder our walk with God. For instance, too many business cares can hinder our walk with God. It is right and necessary for people to be engaged in the business activities of life. People cannot care for their own without being involved in business affairs (1 Timothy 5:8). However, it is entirely possible for a person to become so engrossed in the business life that he forgets God. A person can rob God of the time and worship that so rightly belongs to Him.
Too many social engagements hinder many Christians in their walk with God. Time that should be spent in soul winning or personal work is hindered because of “other” personal commitments. These are things that ordinarily would be fine to engage—except when they interfere with one’s walk with God.
Worldly pleasures also sometimes keep us from walking with God. Vacationing, golfing, fishing, sports, etc. are fine unto themselves, but in excess, they can interfere with a Christian’s walk with God. Jesus took time for Himself, but He did the will of the Father and walked with Him first.
“Two cannot walk together, except they have agreed” (Amos 3:3). When an individual spends too much time and money on worldly pleasures, he is not in agreement with God. A person cannot walk with God while not in agreement with Him.
Fleshly lusts and passions remove one from fellowship and communion with God. People do not generally take this step first. Usually, they become involved with social life and worldly pleasures through which they drift away from God. Later, they may give way to the baser lusts and pleasures of the flesh (Galatians 5:1-21).
We can learn valuable lessons from the account of Enoch. Enoch did not change his associations in his translation from earth to heaven. He only changed his place of association. He walked with God and lived for God in this life, and then, when he was translated, he still lived with God.
Enoch did not make a change in his activities when translated. Here, he served God, and when translated, Enoch continued to serve God. If some people were translated to Heaven, would they have to make an immediate change in their associations and the type of activities in which they engaged? If there would be too great a change to be made for us, can we conclude that we are not ready for Heaven?
From Jude’s statement about Enoch, we learn that Enoch was not in harmony with the majority in his day. He bore a message of condemnation for the people of his generation. Usually, those who walk with God are out of harmony with the generation in which they live.
Is our walk like Enoch’s walk, in agreement and harmony with God? If it is not, you can make that change today. Non-Christians can obey the Gospel by believing that Jesus Christ is the Son of God—our Savior (John 8:24) and being baptized (immersed in water, Romans 6:3-5; Colossians 2:12) to be saved (Mark 16:16) or to receive he remission of sins (Acts 2:38). Erring Christians can receive forgiveness for their sins through repentance and prayer (Acts 8:22; 1 John 1:9).
The decision is yours. You must make one now!