Today we begin Genesis Chapter 5.
For the Complete Jewish Bible, click here.
For the King James version, click here.
If you ever wondered what’s up with all the genealogies listed in the Bible, I gave you the answer in my last post.
In the Bible, blood lines are everything.
These genealogies will stand as an objective and enduring testimony to God’s faithfulness to preserve His chosen nation Israel. And the great news is that you too can become one with Israel through faith in the Messiah.
In the last post, I pointed out that Cain (the one who killed his brother Abel) will be the forerunner of the wicked line of Satan while Seth will be the ancestral forerunner of the people of God.
So Genesis Chapter 5 is the genealogy of Seth and his descendants.
It is from this holy line that Noah of Noah’s ark fame will emerge.
Note that Noah’s father is named Lamech.
However, this is NOT the same wicked Lamech mentioned in Genesis chapter 4.
Lamech was likely a typical name for that era, just as Bill and George are typical names in our day.
In the Bible, when you see the same name come up repeatedly two or three times, do NOT immediately assume that it is the same person we are talking about.
Another interesting feature that stands out as we read this list is that folks lived quite a long time back then. As unlikely as it may seem to be, there is nothing symbolic or metaphorical about the ages listed. Those are real ages.
At the close of this chapter, two important things are revealed to us.
First, we are introduced to Noah, who will be commissioned by God to build the ark.
Second, we are introduced to Noah’s three sons, Shem, Japheth and Ham from whom the whole human race will emerge.
However, again, keep in mind that these were NOT Noah’s only sons. At the time, he was 500 years old and had already given birth to quite a number of children. It was only these three sons who were especially chosen by God to be saved from the flood to come.
Soon we will be discussing the great flood that God sent to destroy every human being and every creature that dwells on the land.
There is an interesting historical fact that I would like to point out.
The great flood will effectively put an end to Cain’s race.
However, through Noah and his offspring, Seth’s line will live on.
What this teaches us is that any man or nation that chooses to go against God will eventually be cut off.
No matter how many grand accomplishments any one individual or nation achieves, in the end their surefire destruction is guaranteed.
Look at what the God of Israel did to Egypt.
Look at what happened to the Roman Empire.
In closing, I leave you with this insightful quote from Mark Twain testifying to the eternal nature of the Jewish people.
“If the statistics are right, the Jews constitute but one quarter of one percent of the human race. It suggests a nebulous puff of star dust lost in the blaze of the Milky Way. Properly, the Jew ought hardly to be heard of, but he is heard of, has always been heard of. He is as prominent on the planet as any other people, and his importance is extravagantly out of proportion to the smallness of his bulk.
His contributions to the world’s list of great names in literature, science, art, music, finance, medicine and abstruse learning are also very out of proportion to the weakness of his numbers. He has made a marvelous fight in this world in all ages; and has done it with his hands tied behind him. He could be vain of himself and be excused for it. The Egyptians, the Babylonians and the Persians rose, filled the planet with sound and splendor, then faded to dream-stuff and passed away; the Greeks and Romans followed and made a vast noise, and they were gone; other people have sprung up and held their torch high for a time but it burned out, and they sit in twilight now, and have vanished.
The Jew saw them all, survived them all, and is now what he always was, exhibiting no decadence, no infirmities, of age, no weakening of his parts, no slowing of his energies, no dulling of his alert but aggressive mind. All things are mortal but the Jew; all other forces pass, but he remains. What is the secret of his immortality?”
–Mark Twain, September 1897