We’ll be covering a lot of people today that I am sure everyone has heard of before. Before I get going this will be a great time to introduce you to one of the resources I have mentioned under the RESOURCES page (click on resources here). You can also click the blue button at with the same name at the top of the page. The specific resource you may want when you have time is the BlueLetterBible . It ONLY comes in the KJV translation but is still quite helpful. If you have questions about how to use it contact me and I will be glad to share what I know (just keep in mind I am still learning too) :-).
We are going to be taking a look at some of the names in our reading today and what they mean. The BlueLetterBible is a great resource to discover what specific words in the bible mean. I had never heard of it before last year and was so impressed with what I learned. It makes me want to learn Hebrew (seriously)!! Isn’t this exciting!!! In your spare time or prayer time, when the Lord brings me to mind please pray that I will remain faithful with great anticipation for each day to see what new things the Lord will teach me that I can share. <><
Ok.. enough about the resource and on to today’s reading.
I am learning that the names of people and places in the Bible mean something special. Their meanings can help us understand the person or place a little better. Here are a few meaning I discovered. Eve means Life. Adam means man. Cain means possession (my teacher last year (Trish) said that Cain meant God’s possession since it said with the help of the Lord in the scripture). Abel means breath or vapor, which makes sense if you think about his short life. The Land of NOD is the Land of Wandering (where Cain went). Noah means rest or comfort which makes a lot of sense considering he was the one chosen to build the ark … a rest, a comfort from the flood. Enoch means dedicated. Did you notice that Cain’s son was named Enoch? And then the son of Jared was named Enoch. The son of Jared is the one that totally ROCKS!! Did you catch this in Genesis 5:21-23 (NIV)??
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.
Enoch was so dedicated to the Lord that he walked faithfully with God and then he was no more… he DID NOT DIE… GOD TOOK HIM AWAY 🙂 Now that is what I call dedicated!! And did you know that Methuselah is the oldest living person EVER? He lived to be 969!!
The Lord took Enoch away before the Flood was to come, now there’s an example of awesome protection!! There are 2 people ever in history to be taken up to heaven by the Lord without dying…do you know the other?? (answer at bottom)
In reading the bible in the past I never quite understood why God didn’t like what Cain brought him and liked what Abel brought. Last year I noticed that the scripture states that Cain brought HIM some of the fruits of the soil. BUT Abel brought God his best “fat portions of some of his first born” animals. God encourages Cain to give his best (offering Cain a second chance) but Cain does nothing. God tells him “sin is crouching at your door but you must rule over it”. Cain does not heed the warning. He grows angry and kills Abel. Although God sends Cain wandering because he does not want to obey what God asks, God STILL loved him and did two things that I found interesting. First, God told Cain that he would mark him so NO one could kill him (which was something Cain was concerned about) AND Cain gets married, has a family, a community, a job, and has a son. This is a powerful message for me. We are all sinners, just like Cain. We make our choices and each of our choices has consequences, some are life long. However, the choices and consequences do NOT mean that God does not love us. The wrong choices also do not mean that the Lord will not bless us. THIS is the very reason he sent Jesus … so we would have an ever present help in our time of trouble… so he could redeem each of us .. so we could have a personal relationship with HIM for all eternity.
I also found this scripture today as a cross reference to Cain and Abel in Hebrews 11:4 (NIV)
By faith Abel brought God a better offering than Cain did. By faith he was commended as righteous, when God spoke well of his offerings. And by faith Abel still speaks, even though he is dead.
As well as 1 John 3:12 (NIV)
Do not be like Cain, who belonged to the evil one and murdered his brother. And why did he murder him? Because his own actions were evil and his brother’s were righteous.
We all have “sin crouching at our door” and must make choices each day, most likely if you are like me multiple times each day to choose if sin is going to rule over us. It is humbling to admit that I am no different than Cain and I could have been the one who did the wrong thing but I thank God for Jesus who loves me with a love deeper than I can even begin to understand.
People who are not Christians will not like us, not because of our actions, but because of theirs!! I think this is what happened between Cain and Able. Cain was not a happy camper when he saw God’s favor and pleasure on Able because of Able’s actions. Did Cain see the second chance or just become angrier at God’s correction?
And Noah, can you imagine being told to build an ark in the DESERT…. no rain in sight… and then to gather his family, food, and all the animals. But then the rains came and the ark was a place of protection, security, and comfort .. (although I can ONLY IMAGINE the smells that had to be on board.. wee doggies!!!) The Lord SHUT HIM IN THE ARK!! The Lord protected him (see Gen 7:16) Can you also being the people on the OUTSIDE of the ark when God shut the doors???
But here is the good news… JESUS is our ark. The flood has so many meanings to it. Yet the biggest thing for me is we have a story of REDEMPTION with Noah just as we have a story of redemption with Jesus!! Redemption is a theme that runs through each page of this book. See…. the idea of Jesus and redemption is showing up right here in Genesis!! I don’t know about you guys… but I am ON the ARK….JESUS is my ark and HE will save me from eternal death. Thank God!!
Elijah is the ONLY other person in the Bible who God took away and he did not die.
Sharing HIS love
Let me hear from you if you are doing the study…. what do you think, what are you learning, what verses stood out most to you so far?