Of Numbers and Epitaph

Of numbers in an epitaph… Epitaph is a phrase or statement written in memory of a person who has died, especially as an inscription on a tombstone.

It’s been said it’s not the years in your life but the life in your years. In the account of Genesis 4 & 5. There are many names listed in these passages; and each one had a number attached to his name. How long he lived. It was recorded how old each was when he first became a father, the name of the first born, then how long he lived to have other sons and daughters. The last fact being, how old he was when he died.

Of all the names listed, Methuselah had the highest at 969 and guess who had the lowest at 365? Enoch. In Genesis 5, 4 short verses recorded the life of Enoch. These are the facts of his life:

21 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.

Interesting facts about Enoch:
1) He had the shortest days but he was the father of one who lived the longest.
2) He was one of two youngest father at 65 – the other one was Mahalalel.
3) He was the only one described with walking faithfully with God. and how old was he? He was already 65 years old.
4) He was the only one whose biography did not end with ‘Then he died.’ It ended with “He was no more.”
5) And his was the only end with an explanation. He was no more ‘because’ God took him away.

Where did the others go? How did they die? Didn’t God also take them away?

More observations with corresponding questions to ponder:
1) Enoch walked with God 300 years. He started when he became a father.
Q1: He was 65 when he started walking with God. How old does one have to be before starting to walk faithfully with God?

2) Two times in his whole biography of 4 verses, Enoch was described as walking faithfully with God.
Q2: If a very short biography of 4 sentences were to describe my life, would there be any faithfully walking with God in them? How faithful?

3) At 365 years when others lived at least twice as much, Enoch lived the shortest.
Q3: Is life just a number? How long is long? How short is short?

4) To be no more, that was Enoch’s end. No more on earth.
Q4: To be no more sounds like something hanging in the air? It is perhaps disappearing into thin air? Let me think – do I prefer ‘to die’ or ‘to be no more’?

5) Because – this word is a very big word for life and living. Because God took him away.
Q5: When I am no more, what would be the reason? Is it because God’s purpose for my life has been done? Is there still something hanging in the air?

Final Question: In this moment of my being, I am Marlene – still existing. Just existing? What am I doing? What is the reason? Who is the reason? When I am no more, would it be ‘because God took me away?’ Because I walked faithfully with Him?

Today is a new day. Let me start today – walk faithfully with God. So help me God.


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