I don’t know about you, but when I read something familiar, I tend to scan it or overview it. So, when I began reading the book of Genesis again at the first of the year, I asked God to open my heart and mind to new truths. I wanted to dive deep into the well-known stories hoping they wouldn’t sound like Charlie Brown’s teacher in my head.
God has answered my prayer. It’s been good stuff. Last week I came across something that completely blew my mind!
In chapter five, the listing of Adam’s descendants began. I took a breath and began to read the names. Bear with me as I give you the short version:
From Genesis 5:
When Adam had lived 130 years, he had a son…and he named him Seth.
When Seth had lived 105 years, he became the father of Enosh.
When Enosh had lived 90 years, he became the father of Kenan.When Kenan had lived 70 years, he became the father of Mahalalel.
When Mahalalel had lived 65 years, he became the father of Jared.
When Jared had lived 162 years, he became the father of Enoch.
When Enoch had lived 65 years, he became the father of Methuselah.
When Methuselah had lived 187 years, he became the father of Lamech.
28-29. When Lamech had lived 182 years, he had a son. He named him Noah.
After Noah was 500 years old, he became the father of Shem, Ham and Japheth.
Did you see it? For generation after generation, the oldest any of the men had ever been when they became a father was 187 years old. That was Methuselah. Until … Noah. Verse 32 doesn’t say he was already a father at 500, but AFTER he was 500.
Genesis 6:9 reveals that “Noah was a righteous man, blameless among the people of his time, and he walked faithfully with God.” That’s significant. Though he hadn’t had children — boys to carry on the family name — he still walked faithfully with God in spite of the world being corrupt all around him. Though he was soooo much older (by 313 years!) than all the other men of his family had been when they became fathers, he still trusted in God. Had he wondered about his worth? Had he pondered his purpose? Had he prayed for a family?
The saga of Noah began hundreds of years BEFORE the ark! I had pictured him suddenly trusting God when he was given the titanic responsibility of building a ship, but that faith and trust had sprouted centuries earlier. He had trusted God with his life, walking with him in difficult times when he didn’t know the outcome. During perilous days when the world was evil, he lived as a light in the dark.
What a story! What an example! Before the blueprint for the ark was announced, before the first animal arrived, God knew He could count on NOAH because Noah knew HE could count on God! Mind. Blown.
During COVID season, my beloved and I are taking vitamins D, B, C and Zinc but we also need a regular dose of GW. That’s God’s Word. It’s crucial for daily life!
Dawn Reed is a newspaper columnist and pastor’s wife in Prestonsburg. Reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.