As we begin Genesis 5, we see the first instance of a critical phrase throughout Genesis: “the written account of.” Other translations have it as “the generations of” (Genesis 5:1). The Hebrew word this phrase is translated from is “toledot.” There are other repeated words and phrases that stand out, as well. In case anyone looks this up in your Bible and finds different wording, I am using the NIV.
- Lived- 26
- Became the father of- 14
- When ____ had lived- 9
- Lived a total of- 9
- Had other sons and daughters- 9
- And then he died- 8
- God- 5
- Adam- 4
Also worthy of note are the words “image” or “likeness,” which are synonymous. Those words are used three times in Genesis 5. “When God created mankind, he made them in the likeness of God” (Genesis 5:1). When Adam had lived 130 years, he had a son in his own likeness, in his own image; and he named him Seth” (Genesis 5:3). God created male and female in his image (Genesis 5:2). After that, all people are made in their parents’ likeness, which makes us all created in God’s image as that is passed down. From this part of our study, we can see that the main subject or theme from Genesis 5 is Adam’s genealogy down to Noah.
Genesis 5:4 tells us that Adam had other sons and daughters. Still, it only tells us details about Adam’s family line through Seth. The following list does not include Seth’s other children, whose names are not mentioned in the biblical text.
- Seth (not Rollins)
- Kenan (not from Kenan & Kel)
- Jared (not the weirdo Subway guy)
- Enoch (the first Rapture- Genesis 5:24)
- Methuselah (the oldest person ever recorded at 969 years (Genesis 5:27)
- Lamech (different from the one in Genesis 4)
- Shem, Ham, and Japheth
When we look at the genealogies given concerning Jesus Christ’s birth in Luke 3:36–38, we see the same names from Genesis 5: Shem, Noah, Lamech, Methuselah, Enoch, Jared, Mahalalel, Kenan, Enosh, Seth, and Adam. So we have all the same names as in Genesis 5, just in reverse, with the inclusion of Adam being called “the son of God.” That is noteworthy because Jesus is called the Son of God 39 times in the New Testament. He is also called the “last Adam.” “The first man Adam became a living being; the last Adam [Jesus], a life-giving spirit (1 Corinthians 15:45).
Earlier, I made a reference to Enoch in association with the first Rapture. After Enoch became Methuselah’s father, he began walking with God. He continued to do so faithfully for 300 years while having other sons and daughters. Then at the age of 365, 987 years after creation, Enoch was no more because God took him away (Genesis 5:18–24). I also find it interesting that the Bible indicates that Enoch began his walk with God after he started having children at age 65.
Now let’s look at Genesis 5:18–24, Hebrews 11:5–6, and Jude's book. We learn that Enoch’s father was Jared. Like all pre-Flood families, Enoch had lots of brothers and sisters. That is not hard to believe, considering that Jared continued to produce children for another 800 years after Enoch was born. Enoch’s father, Jared, lived a total of 962 years. I already talked about what else Genesis 5:18–24 says about Enoch. But Hebrews 11:5–6 fills in some of the details left out in Genesis 5:18–24. Some may presume that I am reading into the text when Enoch experienced the first Rapture. Thinking that the wording may just be a reference to natural death, I refer you to Hebrews 11:5. There, it says, “By faith, Enoch was taken from this life, so that he did not experience death.” Then Hebrews 11:5 quotes Genesis 5:24. Hebrews 11:5 goes on to explain that before Enoch was taken, he was commended as one who pleased God. Verse 6 concludes this thought with one of the most famous verses in the entire Bible for Christians. “And without faith, it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.” That verse is not usually read in connection with Enoch, but that shows us something compelling. God will take Christians to Heaven in a future event called the Rapture before a final seven-year period of judgment before the return of Christ to set up his earthly kingdom. Here we see that a genuine convert to Christ is one who walks faithfully with God because it is impossible to please God without faith. Jude’s book was written to urge the church to “contend for the faith that was once for all entrusted to God’s holy people.” Jude wrote to warn that ungodly people had slipped in among God’s holy people, who perverted the grace of our God into a license for immorality. They also denied Jesus Christ as our only Sovereign and Lord (Jude 3–4). Jude warns us today of future judgment the same way Noah warned of the judgment before the Flood in his day. “Enoch, the seventh from Adam, prophesied about them: ‘See, the Lord is coming with thousands upon thousands of his holy ones to judge everyone, and to convict all of them of all the ungodly acts they have committed in their ungodliness, and of all the defiant words ungodly sinners have spoken against him.’ These people are grumblers and faultfinders; they follow their own evil desires; they boast about themselves and flatter others for their own advantage” (Jude 14–16).
There is one more fascinating thing I would like to note before I close. I first heard this from Chuck Missler, the founder of the Koinonia House. He studied all the name meanings that the Bible lists from Adam to Noah. When you put that list together in order, here is how it reads: “Man appointed mortal sorrow; the blessed God shall come down, teaching his death shall bring the despairing rest (or comfort).” We first see the plan of redemption through Jesus Christ in Genesis 3:14–15. Now we see it here in Genesis 5 hidden in plain sight, stretched out over an approximately 1,600 year time period, in the names of the people listed in the genealogy of the very one their names prophesy about. God is amazing, and so is the book he gave us!