September 20, 2015 [Genesis 10:1-32]

September 20, 2015
[Genesis 10:1-32]
“God’s Love For the Nations”
Pastor Kenny Lee

I think this is one of the first times that I'm kind of glad that I am not reading the text, but preaching from the text. At least I can pick and choose what I read, right? Anyways, great job Kathy. Oh by the way you know we had Mr and Mrs Fink get married in our church. The one who started it off was Pastor Brendon of course and his wife, and then Mr. and Mrs. Fink got married recently. How long has it been? Four months? Four months, great. And then you know we recently had the engagement of Brian and Kathy, which we are really excited about. So congratulations to them.

Back to Genesis… (wonderful things happening). What’s going on in Genesis? Up to this point, what’s going on? What is God doing in Genesis? What is God doing in this book here? Well first and foremost, what I wanted to say is this, is that: We’re going backwards, we’re jumping ahead as it were, let me explain. Chronologically, we’re jumping ahead. What I mean by that is in our Western world we are so bound by time, time is so important, but not scripture. Scripture is more concerned with theological thought, not science, not scientific truth, scientific method, but theological truth. So in other words, God is at the center and man is not.  And so because of that what you’ll notice is that actually [chapter] 11 actually goes before [chapter] 10. Remember the Tower of Babel has already taken place and this is a result of it. This was during the time of Peleg, that it’s kind of hinted there. In verse 25, “To Eber were born two sons: the name of the one was Peleg, for in his days the earth was divided, and his brother's name was Joktan.” So why is that? What happened in the preceding verse, in the preceding chapter what happened? God gives a blessing. God gives blessing to Ham, Japheth, and Shem that they are to be fruitful and multiply. God also brings curses, God through Noah brings curses and blessings on the son, and then after the chapters of scripture says that Noah lived 350 years after the flood, lived a good life, lived up to 950 years and died. And what are the results of that? So what’s going on in the next generation? And we see that God’s word is faithful, that God’s word is true. Noah’s sons have many children. How many nations are there? Anyone count? You don’t have to. The pastor has done it for you already, actually I cheated I looked at somebody else’s reference because they’ve already done it, no need to reinvent the wheel. So how many nations are there? Seventy. Now are there actually seventy? No. Are there more? Probably. But you know the way Moses wrote Genesis, he doesn’t haven’t the convenience of punctuations, exclamation points, question marks, parenthesis, they don’t have a chiseled highlighter, they don’t have anything like that. So they have to do all these techniques, one of the techniques is numbers. There are seventy nations. There’s something interesting about the number seventy, it’s a number of perfection. There’s 7, there’s 10, there’s 3, right? But we are going to concentrate on the 7 and the 10. There’s seventy nations. There is something significant about that. What should it remind you of? Another book that Moses wrote, Exodus. Guess how many people went into Egypt. You guessed it, seventy! There must be significant about that, what could it be?

First of all, what we noticed, what I noticed, is that there’s unity. Why is there unity? Well its one family! Everyone dies on the world and there’s one family. And we’re always striving for unity, right? This whole world is trying to find unity. Unity in diversity, that’s where we get our word university. We’re trying to find union in diversity; we’re trying to find unity. Well we have union here. The world started as one. They stayed as one, but there was a problem. You know how I said that actually the Tower of Babel story came before all this. And that was the problem, there was unity and then unity starts growing and people started growing and people started getting new ideas. They started building a city and started depending on technology; they’re depending on all these things. Why? To be God like. Not to fall under God, but to be like-God. And that was a problem. We try to defy God. Even in our unity, what we try to do is defy God. We try to be self-sufficient; we try to think that we are enough.

That’s the problem with our world these days. But the problem is a little bit further because we notice that there’s diversity. Of course there’s diversity. Look at our room; we’re a diverse bunch of people. Not only diverse in our culture, in race, in gender, but also in generations. What we strive for in this world is unity, same thing in this world, same thing in Noah’s world, in his son’s world. We have the genealogies, we have Japheth and Japheth had all these people, had all these kids Gomer, Magog, Madai, you know, and what they did is they settled in very different regions, Russia, Indonesia, Asia. They say that the Asians may be part of the Japheth. Asia minor in that area, they spread their own. Another thing you notice is that, the way scripture is written is this. First you notice is that it’s Japheth, you know why? Japheth is like the least important, theologically speaking, of course everyone in the world is important. But Japheth is the least theologically important, then comes Ham, then comes Shem. And so what is God trying to do? What God’s trying to do right now is thus far we’ve been seeing the world, God’s been showing us on a global scale of what’s going on. Adam and Eve the first human and then what we see is Noah and the flood, a global devastation. Now what God is doing is God is looking through a microscope and narrowing things down. What God does is God shows how the nations are being filled. Somehow narrowing everything down and eventually what will happen is we’ll get down to one family. That one family will become a nation; from that nation will have a child. And you notice that when you read through scripture that is the pattern of scripture, that’s the way, it goes. So the way I sectioned these things off is: Number one, we started as one, we started with unity. See we have to realize that we started from one family. This whole world started with one family. But that one family became diverse, became dis-unity. And then what we’ll see is God has a plan for true unity.

See what we don’t understand in this world is we think somehow we started differently, somehow humanity started differently. The thing is when we look at scripture, humanity started as one. Noah and Noah had three sons. We are trying to be so different. We look at each other, we point at each other, and especially in this world, in our world, especially in America, the melting point. We point at each other; we look at each other. Even Sundays, on any given Sunday, it’s the most divided day of the week. The Korean church, the Asian church, there’s the White church, Black church, there’s the Chinese church, there’s all these other churches, I mean which is okay, because they speak their language, so having different tribes, different tongues that’s a good thing. But the thing is what we do is we tend to point at each other and think that we are better than each other. Somehow putting each other somewhat different, pointing at stereotypes and just pointing at each other and thinking that we are better than each other. But what we don’t realize is that theologically we come from one that we come from Noah’s sons. From there we see sons of Japheth, sons of Japheth goes furthest away, and then from there comes the nations of Russia, Indonesia, Asia, and Asia minor and all of that.

After that we have people that are closer, sons of Ham. Nothing is changed; humanity hasn’t changed at all. We read in verse 8 “Cush fathered Nimrod; he was the first on earth to be a mighty man. 9He was a mighty hunter before the Lord. Therefore it is said, ‘Like Nimrod a mighty hunter before the Lord.’” You know that sounds pretty good, “He was a mighty hunter before the Lord.” He was the Gibor of the day; he was a mighty man. But we’ve got to read really into that right now, what does that mean to be a mighty hunter? You know hunting wild game and everything; after all after the flood we could eat meat now. But what does that mean being a mighty hunter before the Lord? He was a mighty man; the mighty man is a good thing. But he was a mighty hunter. The depiction is that Nimrod, remember Nimrod’s grandfather is Ham, and what we know about Ham is that he did not respect his father, Noah. So what would his son be like? He was a mighty hunter. See what that means is, the depiction is that he was not just merely a hunter of animals, but he’s actually a hunter of people. He was a tyrant. He did this in the very sight of the Lord. He would go and terrorize and imperialize and dominate other nations. And he did that before the Lord.

Why would a person like Nimrod do that? Do you remember the curse of Ham? That Ham would be a servant, servant to his brothers. So what Nimrod does is he tries to go against God’s curse, tries to dominate people, but what we realize that later down in history, do the sons of Canaan become servants? Yes. You can’t escape God’s word. No matter how hard you try, you cannot go against God’s word.

So right now what is Israel doing? As Moses is writing, penning this Genesis, what are they doing right now? What they’re doing is as a nation they are going up to Canaan. Why is he going up to Canaan? Because God wants to show them a promise land. And what God is doing is God is showing how because of generational sin, because of sin and all of that stuff, that God’s word is coming true. You see that people, nations have their own territory, they are somehow afraid of one another and they are kind of attacking one another. But its okay, there’s hope.
You know a lot of time we look at our genealogy, we look at our father, we look at our mother and we somehow think, “I’m doomed, look at me, I don’t have any hope. My father abused me, my father left me, my mom and dad are always fighting. I have a bad genealogy, I have a bad pedigree, I wasn’t born with a silver spoon in my mouth” and we somehow think that we are doomed. But the fact of the matter is when I see Israel, when I see sons of Shem there’s hope. Why? Because of what God is doing, we see God is the one when he dispersed the nation, dispersed the people and gave them different languages, there were seventy. That God was in on all of that, that God was orchestrating all of that. And what God is orchestrating is “Yes we are the sons of Japheth, who is theologically least important, whose all the way out there. We’re not even the sons of Ham, we’re not especially the sons of Shem.” But what God does is he shows us that he has a plan because of the fact that he loves all of the nations. God loves the whole world and what God is showing us through this tribe of Shem. Because of Israel there is a plan. Just like when God allowed seventy Israelites to go into Egypt, out of Egypt will come a nation of Israel. God has a plan. What is that plan? God’s plan is eventually to use this tribe, this nation to bring blessings upon the world, to bring hope to for your family, for my family. See what would happen is this that what God would do through this nation; the hope of one child would come, that child being the only Son of God.

But you know what’s interesting is this. We look at Ham’s family, from Ham’s family founded the Canaanites, the Egyptians, people from Sidon, Assyria, Ninevah, all these heinous, evil cities, but does God have hope for them? Yes, in fact when we see the genealogy of Jesus, the one and only child of God. Who is in that genealogy? Number one Rahab, a Canaanite prostitute. Who else is in the genealogy of Jesus? None other than Ruth, who is from Sidon. What God does is God has hope; he gives hope to families, nations, to the world. So does God bring hope to your family? Yes, of course. Is there hope for whatever situations that you are in? Yes. And what God does is this: God sends his one and only Son and what the Bible is doing is bringing us onto a journey. A journey to show that he has the nation, you and I, the whole world in mind. And God brings his one and only Son out of this nation and actually this nation doesn’t even want him, this nation says “I want no part of him, what he should do is he should die.” The Romans didn’t want anything to do with him. The Israelites, his own people, didn’t want anything to do with him, and what he did was he died on the cross.

So why would he do something like that? You see there’s a problem that we have. The problem is that even in our unity, like what I said, even in our unity, what we try to do is we try to become like God. We try to be self-sufficient. In our diversity, we become judgmental, we think that we’re better than everyone or we think that we’re lower than everyone. In other words, our sin leads us to death, our sin leads us to depression, our sin leads us into judgment, which will also lead us to death. In other words, our sin, the payment of sin, the wages of sin is death. What God says is “I don’t want that.” And because of that, what I’ll develop is I’ll develop a plan for the world. And I will work through this one nation and out of this nation my Son will come. And when my Son comes he will die for all. Because after all he’s the only one that could actually die for our sin, no one else can. Well you can, but you’ll just die. So what God does is he has a plan to bring forth a sacrifice, a perfect sacrifice, an innocent sacrifice so that when we submit under his authority, when we have a relationship with him that we will have eternal life and there true unity will happen that is God’s love

September 13, 2015 [Genesis 9:1-29]

September 13, 2015
[Genesis 9:1-29]
"Noah in the Modern World"
Pastor Kenny Lee

Television and Scripture...
A lot of the times, we're going through the book of Genesis, and to be honest, we can't really recognize this world. The world seems so foreign: people living 900+ years, animals really friendly and coming up to you.. it's a very different world, right up to the flood, that is. After the flood, the world becomes a little more familiar: the age of man starts going down, animals know their place, and they start fearing man. Things start making sense for us a little bit. But right before this point, we're just like "How can people live 900+ years? How can animals be so friendly? They seem like they can almost communicate. How is that?" So different... So different than the way God created this world and the way it is now. That got me to think.. I wonder what Noah would think if Noah was able to transport in time here.. and how did I come up with that idea? Noah in the modern world. Just imagine if Noah just came here. The way I came up with that title is this: long time ago, one of the last TV show episodes before I went on this "I'm not gonna watch TV rant", my wife and I watched a TV show called "Heroes". I know that now, there's a "Heroes Reborn", so the younger generation could watch this thing called"Heroes". "Heroes" is about regular people who have mutated powers. Is it like "X Men"? Yea, but it almost seems real, you know. But the show became weird because the storyline became too weird and I stopped watching it. Anyways, theres this one character, his name is Hiro, he's Japanese, and he had this unique ability to stop time or to transport himself somewhere. He's able to go "snap" and transport somewhere... we know how space and time are very related. Later on, he realizes that he can snap his fingers, bend time and travel back in time. With my mind, I was really bored.. and what does someone who's studying do when they're really bored? That's right. watch Youtube. So I would be looking around, and lo and behold, "Heroes Reborn". I remember that show "Hero"! I remember Hiro too!

Noah in Our World?
Wouldn't it be cool, wouldn't it be really awesome if somehow, Noah could somehow come into our world? I wonder what he would say. He's a person who experienced a unique thing.. he has a unique skillset. He knows what the wrath of God is like. He knows what the world is like just before condemnation and judgement came. he has a very unique skillset, does he not? One that very few people have. And after he experienced all that, I wonder what he would say.. I think one of the first things he would say is, "The world still exists.. Wow! God keeps his word!" He would look at the vast earth and be like, "Wow there are a lot of people, wow there are a lot of people with very different colors than me, there are people with lighter skin, darker skin, and lots of them. wow. God keeps His word. "And God blessed Noah and his sons and said be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth" (Genesis 9:1). Wow. God's blessing is truly a blessing. God keeps His word. I think that's the first thing he would realize. He would look at the world and be shocked that the world existed this long. The second thing that I think he would realize is fear. You see, what happens right after "be fruitful and multiply" the earth that God gives a bless to man, just like did in the beginning, right? But then in verse 2, this is what it says "The fear of you and the dread of you shall be upon every beast of the earth and upon every bird of heaven, upon everything that creeps on the ground and all the fish of the sea" (Genesis 9:2). It almost seems like up to this point, animals were not afraid of people.

The Fear of Man
You know it's really funny that a long time ago, I used to have a shitzu. Don't ask me what a guy like me was doing with a shitzu, but yet, I had a shitzu. It's a small, little dog, but we had that dog when it was a puppy. I should have a rottweiler, right? But no, I had a shitzu. Well, it's my wife's dog,.. she made me get it. I don't know why I'm being so defensive about it right now, thats not the point. The point is this: my dog would walk around in the yard and there would be some rabbits. Those rabbits had no fear of my dog. Those rabbits would come up to my dog, Pepper, and actually Pepper would be afraid of those rabbits and start running to me. For me, I would just step out and those rabbits would disappear. I would see some videos as well where dogs are romping around and deer are playing around with the dogs. You ever see those videos? You get bored and you want to see cute things, you see deer prancing and dogs running around. Somehow, they are not afraid of the dog. But then my child comes out, or I come out and the deer run away and the dog returns to the owner. There's something about man.. isn't that weird? A buffalo or a lion could chill out with a rhinoceros, but a man comes along and all the animals disappear. You don't think thats weird? Of course you don't. we were born into it. It doesn't seem weird, thats natural, yeah. Why are all animals afraid of us? Why? thats because that's what God ordained. But also, its a natural progression of sin. Sin. Noah would look at this and be like "I remember the day when animals were afraid of me. It was a sad day, and this is what it has become." And I think there would be a sign of familiarity, but a sadness that Noah would have. But I think Noah would notice other things as well.

Similarities in the Past and the Present
I think that Noah would start looking at the people and how they interact with one another, do some Google searching on the plight of the world, and he would recognize that people, not only are animals are afraid of people, but the fact that people are afraid of one another. That people fear one another, that people are judgmental of one another. Along with seeing how God keeps His word, Noah would see, "Wow, this world reminds me of my old world." People are a lot better dressed, a lot of different colors.. they have purple yellow, red.. they look nice, they're maybe better groomed, have better technology, but there's something similar, there's something familiar about the way people are treating one another. The way they're afraid, the way they manipulate, the way they use, the way they abuse, the way that people don't think... And I think he would say something along these lines, "The world reminds me of my world, just before the flood. Murders, wars, rumors of wars, earthquakes.. This world reminds me of my world: there's something similar about it."And up to that point, I think Noah would be kind of depressed and sad and maybe call me or somebody else and say, "Hey Kenny, Pastor Brendon, it's too urban out here for me... You want to go to someplace where there's not too many buildings?" "Noah, you mean camping?" "Yea, lets do that thing: lets go camping." And being an avid Bear Grylls fan, I pack up my Bear Grylls knife and all that stuff, and we embark, maybe to Shenandoah and we travel to Shenandoah and we sit down and start talking to Noah and Noah is extremely sad. Why? Because he sees the plight of the this world and this world hasn't improved at all. In fact, the world is almost to a point where his world was just before the flood, before God's judgment. 

God's Covenant with Noah 
And Noah tells us a sad story, and of course, us, people in the modern world, get sad along with him. But then after, I would say, "Alright, this is depressing enough. Noah, let's go for a walk. Hey, Pastor Brendon, you want to go for a walk?" "Uh, sure." And then we would go for a walk. And as we go for a walk, we see a nice waterfall. The waterfall is there and the sun is hitting it and there's a mist and Noah looks, and all of a sudden, a rainbow. It's a quarter of a rainbow, but if you move a bit, you could see the full rainbow. You could finagle a full rainbow, but you do see an rainbow, and all of a sudden, Noah gets all happy. "Noah, what are you happy about? You just told us the most depressing thing, that the world is just like your world before God's judgment." "Yeah, but dear brothers, don't you see the rainbow? Don't you see the rainbow?" "Yeah, I see the rainbow a lot. Some people see double rainbows and get freaked out." "No. Can I tell you what God said to me? I'll never forget it. God said to me and my sons and He said, " "Behold, I establish my covenant with you and your offsprings after you, and with every living creature that is with you, the birds, the livestock, and every beast of the earth with you, as many as came out of the ark; it is for every beast of the earth. I establish my covenant with you, that never again, shall all flesh be cut off by the waters of the flood, and never again shall there be a flood to destroy the earth." And God said, "This is my sign of the covenant that I made between me and you and every living creature that is with you, for all future generations: I have set my bow in the cloud, and it shall be a sign of the covenant between me and the earth" (Genesis 9:9-13). And God says, "When I bring clouds over the earth and the bow is seen in the clouds, I will remember my covenant that is between me and you and every living creature of all flesh. And the waters shall never again become a flood to destroy all flesh" (Genesis 9:14-15). 

God's Judgment Upon Himself
"Isn't that great?! Do you see that?!" "Okay, Noah, I don't really get what you're saying." "The problem with your world and my world is the fact that we need to be judged, because we treat each other so badly. There are people that take advantage of one another.. They're really mean, judgmental, they keep themselves apart, are really afraid of one another... And they do whatever they like.. there're no standards, and just like your world, just like my world, if we leave it alone, we will end up destroying ourselves and ultimately, we need to be judged. But you see, God has set His bow, and you guys call it a rainbow, but when God told me, it was a bow and arrow... and the fact that the bow and arrow is no longer pointed at the earth, what does that mean?" You see, the covenant made between Noah and God is this, God will not judge the earth anymore the way He did. So how do we take care of the problem of sin?  What God will do, is God points the bow at Himself, and says, "If I don't keep my end of the bargain, then I will die. The real important thing is this: even if you don't keep your end of the bargain, in other words, if you guys screw up, if you're sinful, when you're sinful, its okay because God said he would take on that arrow. So what does God do? If Noah was in our world, he would say, "So tell me what the Bible says about the one that I was waiting for? The one that I was waiting for when I was making that sacrifice, that God is going to make the sacrifice? Tell me about him!"And you know what I would tell him, I would say "Jesus Christ, God's only son, came into this world to die for people like you and I, that if we believe and have a relationship with Him, that we will be free from the clutches of sin and death, so that we have eternal life in Jesus and God. That's it. That's the rainbow." See, upon that, Noah would be fully satisfied. The hope is not in this world... Let me tell you a little different way so that it may hit home with you. I said this is in a bible study, so let me say this. 

How God Loves His People
If you guys were to have a terminal illness like cancer.. just say you have a brain tumor and you're in stage 4 and you're about to die... You don't think your mother, you don't think your daddy would go pleading to the doctor and say "Is there any way you could save my baby? Is there any way you could save my beloved?" The doctor would say, "There is one experimental treatment." "What is it??" "The problem is, we need a host and we need that tumor to go into another person." Don't you think, for most or all of your parents, all of the people that love you, don't you think that it won't even be something to think about? You know most of your moms and dads would say? They would gladly gladly say , "ME. I'll do it. I'll die. For my baby, I will die. For my beloved, put that cancer into me." It will be their joy, and you know what I mean. They're not happy about it, but they will be more than happy to take your place and put that tumor inside their head. Do they ask for anything in return? No. They just want you to live a wonderful, free life. They don't want anything in return. We have a brain tumor in our heads: it's called sin, which is guaranteed to lead us into death. And what God does, what God says, is, "I'll take it. I'll take it for my beloved" and that's exactly what God does. That's exactly what the rainbow symbolizes, that God will take that tumor that's inside your head and put it into His so that you can live. And what He wants in return is for you to be free, so that you could live a free life and have an intimate relationship with Him. That's the Gospel, you know? And you didn't work at it, it's not because you're pretty or because you're extra ugly, or anything like that... or you're smart or you're sharp as a cucumber.. It's not anything like that... It's because God loves you. That's it. 

No Rhyme or Reason to God's Perfect Love
Heaven forbid, if my wife comes up to me and says, "Oh, honey, why do you love me?" "Oh, because you're pretty bangin', you're all that, you know? You have a quick wit and you make a lot of money, so I love you." And the she would say "What if I got into an accident and I get a scar and I don't look the way I do? Then, would you still love me?" "Yea... I mean, you still cook really well.." "What if I somehow, physically, I can't cook well? How about then?" Then you start digging yourself into a hole and you're done, you see? Gentlemen, never get into that mess, alright? You know what you say? "God says, I love you, so I love you!" "I love you because I love you!" And that's it, right? And that's what God says. God says "Israel, you know why I love you? It ain't because you're the biggest of nations. In fact, you're the smallest. It's not because you listen well.. actually, you don't listen well at all. Israel, you know why I love you? You're mine, and I just love you. And that's what your mommy and daddy would say too. "Mom, dad, do you love me?" "Yes, of course I love you!" "Why?" "Because you're my son, you're my daughter! Of course I love you!" "But I get straight F's..." "Yea, I know.. but I still love you!" "I don't listen to a word you say.." "I KNOW, but I still love you!" There's no rhyme or reason except for the fact you're His, you see? Don't you want to experience that kind of perfect love? I pray that as a church, we may experience that kind of love.   

August 30, 2015 [Genesis 7:1-24]

August 30, 2015
[Genesis 7:1-24]
“God’s Preparation for Us”
Pastor Brendon Wu

I wanted to share that when I was a kid, there was something that I really wanted to do. I wanted to be the fastest person on earth. And I really thought I could because in my neighborhood, I was faster than all the other boys and all the other girls. And one time, I was talking to my dad about “The Trinity” (Harvard, Stanford, Yale). And I said “You know, Dad, maybe I can run my way into Harvard, earn my way into Stanford and Yale and everything” and he told me to not try that and just focus on my studies. And being someone who just followed my own feelings and nature, I worked very hard to run, run, run, run and middle school came and when it was time to try out, it was awful. There were all these other kids who lived outside Westbrook and they were fast. They were lanky. They were muscular. They were many things that this Chinese boy was not. And so I think God definitely prepares us in our lives for many different things. And the bible is full of people that prepare for a very long time to do something. And they end up doing it for reasons that end up glorifying god. Not just the simple thoughts of a Chinese boy who wanted to run really fast.
We see that in the Book of Genesis with Noah. And we see that in other places too. And I want to share a few of these examples because I think they’re amazing. I got so excited last night because we’re studying the Book of Esther in couple’s bible study and in the Book of Esther, it says that Esther took a whole year to prepare for her meeting with the Persian King Ahasuerus.  And when it said it took a whole year for her to get ready, I didn’t say this in bible study but I thought “Hallelujah, my woman doesn’t take anywhere near that long”. And for all the men in the house, one or two hours we can bear. That’s better than a year. There’s more.  In the book of 1 Samuel, it says that King David, before he was a king, was a shepherd boy all his life, defending his beloved sheep against lions and bears.  And he did that all his life, it wasn’t just once in a while, like the full moon. But lions and bears were a common thing and he defended his sheep. Honestly, if a lion was trying to kill Kazui, I think I would become a prayer warrior, a husky warrior and let the husky do the battle. Do you see me? I learned from Genesis that a man’s life is worth more than an animal, I’m just being biblical!  Of course, if a lion was after my wife, I would kill him with my bare hands!  

In Book of Genesis, later on, we see Joseph, he was one of the youngest of 12, I believe. He was sold into slavery by his brothers (talk about hyungs/brothers that are not being nice). Then after that, he was falsely accused by his boss’ wife of having an affair with her. He was forgotten and left behind by his friends in jail after he rescued them, and somehow by God’s grace ended up as the Egyptian Pharaoh’s second-in-command right hand man. Like his vice president. Wow, it ended up really well. Did all these lives have a purpose in the end? A purpose that has something to do with God, and not just themselves. And the answer is yes. Esther didn’t just win the Miss Persia pageantry contest and became queen, but she was used by God. And God used her in a way that actually wasn’t that pleasant. She had to risk her life and ask the king for a personal favor. And at the time, a woman was literally risking her life and putting her life at someone’s feet for doing that. David later on became king, from shepherd to king, and we all know the famous David and Goliath story. He took a sling shot, maybe from 5 Below or something we know it was just a sling shot and he killed Goliath with that. But for those of us at Wednesday bible study, we are being humbled by seeing that David had many trials after that. He fought the temptation of adultery and failed. He killed a dear friend of his, he was betrayed by other friends, his son made many attempts to kill him. And yet, God used him. And also, with Joseph.

God's Preparation 
The question for us is God’s preparation for us. Do you see how God is preparing your life for something glorious? Something for Him? Because whether we believe in God or not, something we can agree on is we don’t want to look back and think “man, I wasted so many of my years on that”. Some of us probably felt that way when we applied for a job or school and got rejected. “Oh my goodness, I pulled 37 all-nighters. I was the Michael Jordan of all-nighters and I was rejected?” We don’t want to look back and think that we wasted our lives. I bet Noah’s experience during this time is very close to that. Something we know from scripture is that during this time, man was so corrupt and sinful. And as PK mentioned last week, even Noah himself was the same way. But because of God’s amazing grace, He decided to redeem Noah and consider him to be a righteous person. And that was only because of what Jesus would ultimately do. That Jesus would ultimately die for Noah’s past, present, and future sins and our sins too. But we see that in Genesis it’s not just that simple. God wasn’t just like “Hey, I saved you!” and happily ever after. Like a David and Goliath kind of thing. But there were trials and hard things that Noah had to do. And so in this way, when we look at Noah’s life, his life is similar and different to our life in a lot of ways.

Blind Faith
How it ends in Genesis 6 is Noah does everything God commanded him to do. There wasn’t one thing that God commanded him to do and he didn’t do. And not only that but when God first time Noah to build an ark because a flood is coming, people say that he was told probably around 500 years old. We know when the flood came, he was about 600 years old so we know it was about a 100 year time frame but Noah was faithfully and consistently following God’s word the whole time. So what’s more impressive? Taking a girl out on the most impressive date of her life and giving her perfect flowers? Or at least the right flowers. Taking her out to the perfect Nicholas Sparks movie, horrible choice, don’t do that. I did that once by accident because I didn’t know Nicholas directed that one. But being the most amazing gentleman and really winning the heart of the girl for a day. Or is it more impressive that a man would give up and sacrifice everything he has to consistently and faithfully love a person for 100 years, everyday. And not without fail, but even with failure to continue to do that. And as I starting to look at Noah, I realized that’s the kind of man that God was crafting Noah to be. And Noah did just that. He clung to God’s word and followed it everyday.
Something that God commanded Noah to do was build an ark out of gopher wood. And I don’t know, if I was Noah at the time I would’ve thought “shouldn’t I make it out of different substance? Like steel, iron, or just something stronger than gopher wood. Or adamantium? That’s what Wolverine was made out of, it’s like indestructible steel.  Or vibranium? That’s what Captain America’s shield is made out of.” Of course there wasn’t a captain America back then but something like that. Or even thinking about this ark. Maybe I would want to modify it like make it a little different. Make it into a convertible. “Oh the flood’s coming, let me float through this flood with the top down. People would be like ‘woohoo’” Something like that. But we see that with Noah, he just did everything that God commanded in him. He didn’t add to it/subtract from it. He did exactly as God said and did it for 100 years. The reason that I’m emphasizing that so much, is that in between those 100 years it doesn’t seem that God really gives Noah any physical or visible sign that a flood is coming. The only thing that Noah can trust upon is God’s word. And I think that’s amazing because the way we normally trust in a relationship or in our life is that we want to see some kind of proof. If we apply to a job, we want to hear from an employer that they’re at least thinking about it. We applied for school, we want to at least hear that they at least received our application and will be in touch with us after 90 days. But how about 100 years of nothing visible? And during those 100 years that Noah is getting up and waking every single day, his family must’ve doubted him many times thinking will the flood really come? That he’s throwing his life away and their lives away. Not only that, but it says that Noah was living during a time that men were very corrupt and very violent. And so if we think about men making fun of Noah, it probably wasn’t only that but to the extent that men wanted to take Noah and his family’s life and just ridiculing him. But one thing that scripture tells us from Hebrews 11:7 is that “by faith Noah, being warned by God concerning events as yet unseen, in reverent fear constructed an ark for the saving of his household. By this he condemned the world and became an heir of the righteousness that comes by faith”. So it was by just pure faith that Noah did all this. And the first thing that really stood out to me from that was that from chapter 6 verse 22 is that Noah did all of this and all God commanded him to do. And in Chapter 7 verse 5 Noah did all that he Lord had commanded him. So Noah was trusting and only banking upon God’s word. So if he hadn’t thought that God was good and God wasn’t loving, he was done. He was finished. But he trusted so much in God’s word and that was the only thing that led to God’s salvation.

Is God’s word like that for us? Is it enough? Is it more than enough? That we can go through 100 years of our family members ridiculing us, doubting us. Is it enough for us? And I think that when we look at it, not only did Noah trust in God’s word and live and eventually die based upon it, but the very son of God did that too, Jesus. And I think it’s amazing to think about how Jesus Christ was going to the cross, after being betrayed by his friends and people who were close to him. Going to the cross and dying, being nailed to a piece of wood. This is the creator, after all, being nailed to a piece of wood. It’s not like Jesus was thinking “this is nothing because eventually God is going to raise me up.” Jesus knew that because of scripture on a certain level, but on another level it took more than just knowing mentally in his head what scripture said. But in his heart, he had to know and trust God and submit and surrender everything to Him. So he had to perfectly and whole heartedly surrender to God.

Our Own Ark
So the question for us is what’s more important to us? Is it God’s thoughts? Is it His words and His feelings? Or is it our words and our feelings? No matter how much Noah could’ve thought otherwise, by God’s grace, Noah clung onto God’s word and only through that he was saved. Which shows us that only by clinging onto God’s thoughts and God’s word, we can be saved through Jesus. And I think this is just an amazing truth for us because Noah followed God every day. There were probably some days that were better than others and he was seeing the ark being built and said “wow we’ve finished 4 square cubits. That’s better than 0 because I’ve never built an ark before. Have you ever built an ark before, Shem? No, you didn’t, because I fathered you. So I know about you. Ham, what kind of name is that? It’s a great name, but you never built an ark either!” And as he started to see the ark getting constructed, he started seeing God’s word become true. And so what that means for us, is that a lot of times we don’t know where God’s word is taking us. But as we follow it every single day, we start to see bits and pieces of it just starting to come true and get fulfilled. “God, I don’t know what to do with my life. My instinct just says just get married to this person because I’m lonely but Your word says that You are enough. And I don’t know how for so many years feeling like I’m in a desert or in a drought, eventually it comes to a point where it comes to where you think “wow if I married this person, it could’ve gone here and there and somewhere that doesn’t have anything to do with Jesus. But trusting in God’s word, little by little, God, thank you that this where it led to me right now. That it’s led me to a church that loves you and follows your word and cares about it.” And I think when we see different things like that, that’s God’s miracles that he shows us, even before the greatest miracle has happened. And Noah for 100 years, he was trusting in that and seeing the ark get slowly built and God’s goodness. That’s one way that Noah’s life is very similar to ours. God called Noah to follow him in everything. He calls us to follow him in everything.

A second way that we’re similar and not different from Noah is how God prepares our life. Did God say to Noah “go into the ark. You are such an awesome guy. Your charity has paid off. Good job on paying off all your student loans. You have never gotten a speeding ticket…on the ocean. Because they didn’t have cars back then. You’ve been good to your wife. Kind of. Relatively. You’re such a good guy so just go into the ark.” But what God says to Noah is “go into the ark. You and all your household, because I’ve seen that you are righteous before me in this generation” and one thing that PK was really highlighting last week and that’s a big point is that Noah himself wasn’t that righteous. And we know because later on, after he gets rescued and everything, the guy gets kind of drunk and does some dumb stuff. Those are stories you don’t want to have, it’s an indicator that we’re not very righteous. And so he knows that he’s not very righteous and in addition to that, every person was wicked on earth in God’s eyes. But God saw him as righteous and yet could accept him and bring him onto the ark. You know, I could see God at least bringing the zebras on. Beautiful zebras, if I could tame one I would own one as a pet. Save a lot of gas. I don’t even know if you can own those creatures. And even lions, beautiful mane, wow that hair. Different creatures like dolphins, eagles, cheetahs. Those animals didn’t sin against God. When the cheetah was running, he wasn’t breaking any speed limits. He was just running for the glory of God. But it was man. It was man (x5) and woman who did awful and treacherous things against God and His people. God, how could you let Noah onto the ark? And what it says is that God saw him as righteous. And God told him to bring not only two of each animal, but seven pairs of all clean animals. The males and its mate. Seven pairs of the birds of the heavens. So what it is, is that God accepted Noah onto the ark because of the fact that he saw him as righteous and because of the sacrifice that was made for him. And after the whole flood and everything we see that one of the first things that Noah does is he sacrifices these clean animals and makes an offering to God. And God is pleased by the aroma of these things and therefore has a relationship with Noah.

Sealing the Deal
But there’s no way that animal can die for human being. It just doesn’t make any sense. If a human being’s life is worth more than an animals. So if that’s the case, logically and realistically, there has to be something or someone that is worth more than us. And what that is, is Jesus. Jesus’ blood. Jesus’ life. Is worth so much more than ours. It seems like Noah did everything that God commanded of him, for an entire century. But that still didn’t make Noah sinless. It still didn’t make him perfect. There’s still sin and he did other things that he shouldn’t have done. But there’s one person who has done everything that God wants and never broken any of God’s laws. That person is Jesus Christ, God’s son. And it’s Jesus who eventually comes down from heaven to earth to where we are to undergo the greatest flood. The flood of God’s judgement for us on the cross. Not just going through that for 100 years, not for a little bit of time but for eternity. And I think the thing that’s extremely amazing is that if we think about it logically, there’s no way that Noah and seven other people could’ve constructed this perfect ark, that just the right amount of air would come in and not enough water would come in to sink it. It’s a miracle. Personally for me, I’m so used to “oh yeah, they built an ark. Man is awesome, have you seen the Empire State Building?” You know, things like that. But, they built the ark. And the fact that this ark preserved them and saved them is all by God’s grace. And in verse 16, after Noah and his family and every animal had come in, it says that God shut the door. I think that’s such a weird verse. I would just assume that the door is closed. You know, if the door’s open, lots of water comes in and you’re dead. Door closed, good. But I think what scripture’s really highlighting is that God himself had to shut the door. Noah couldn’t shut the door himself with his family, after working out and growing stronger for the entire year. He couldn’t just ask his wife to help him lift this huge door after lifting weights and going to Ms. Sol’s kettle bell class for a whole 100 years. They couldn’t. But it’s so significant that God himself shut the door to show that only He can accomplish salvation and seal the deal, so to speak.

Just thinking about that, how amazing is it that in our lives, we can see that God alone is the one who accomplishes salvation in our lives? Because of Jesus, God promises us something better than the ark. God promises us the Holy Spirit, that God himself would be with us. And it takes a lot of trust and a lot of faith. Noah had to give up everything to trust that God would provide for him and protect him. And I think that a lot of times, we as a church are so used to protecting ourselves and providing for ourselves. And I think a lot of times we think that we accomplished those things. And that takes away from trusting that it’s God’s word that saves us. But if God loves Noah so much that He did this, and if God loves us so much that He sacrificed His own son on the cross, how much should we trust God? With not just part of our lives, but all of it. So in terms of applying that truth, I was thinking that God wasn’t just faithful to Noah during this time, but forever. And if God is giving us His Holy Spirit to seal it within us and never give it away, that means that God loves us for eternity. And if God loves us for an eternity, can we as a church love God one day at a time?

God never expects us to follow Him perfectly or obey everything in huge radical ways but He calls us to trust in Him one day at a time, one bit at a time. And as we do that we get to see the ark, God’s plan for our life. And that’s the miracle that we get to share together as a church. And it’s all because of Jesus, who is righteous but died for us, that we get to see God’s miracle and His love for us. 

August 23, 2015 [Genesis 6:1-22]

August 23, 2015
Genesis 6:1-22
“Hope for a Hopeless World”
Pastor Kenny Lee

If I was at the retreat and if just one time I did something, maybe I tripped, maybe I ate a snack, my accident could have been avoided. We are in linear time. If a minute thing happened, this accident that I was in could have been avoided. Think about it. All that to say, there is a purpose and design to everything that God does. Yes, it is of our own free will, but at the same time there is a purpose and design to these things. It is not just a mere coincidence. There is a reason why you are here. There is a reason why we are all here. I want you to know that. I want you to know that you are here because of the fact that God wanted you to be here. When you listen to these words and hear actively, that is your spiritual act of worship you are giving right now.

Last week we talked about hope, how in this world hope is a rare commodity. Yet, hope is something that we need to survive- to make it. For example, there are some people who take the MCATs, the LSATS, and the Boards. I talk to them and as they are going through the studies, there are times where they look hopeful and there are times when they look hopeless. I’m sure you know how that feels. It doesn’t feel too good when you’re hopeless. When do you feel hopeless? You take the exam and you got equivalent to a D. They come up to me and say, “Pastor Kenny, I don’t think I’m called to be a student anymore. Because I got what’s equivalent to a D.” You look all glum and hope is just gone. This week we are going to talk about this world. Where is the hope in this world? Not just merely in our lives, but in this world.

The first thing I want you to know is that God is good. That’s a prerequisite. It’s a presupposition; you pre-assume that God is good no matter how this world may go. I was saying, these days as the world goes, the world is getting worse. So we assume that God is not good. Because sin entered this world, does God say the world is going to get better or that the world is going to be without sin? No, all the more sin will grow greater and greater. In other words, the world will get progressively worse. As the world gets worse, the more God’s word will become true. That’s why when you see this world it is full of deception, lies, and suffering. You know that if you live past the age of three months. When babies get out of the womb, the first thing they do is cry. The first time you come out, you know it is much better back in the belly. What we have to know is that God is good.

The last two weeks we saw the line of Cain and the line of Adam. Cain killed Abel. Cain was banned and left to wonder. He wandered, settled in a place, got married, and had children. Cain started a city, in fact He named the city after his son. It seems like all is lost. What about Adam and Eve? They are left with no children now. Not only that, it seems like sin is winning. In the latter chapter of Genesis 4, God gives Adam and Eve another child, Seth. When Seth’s lineage started having children they began to call upon the name of the Lord. Last week, we saw the genealogy of everything. We left it at that. In this chapter, we notice that man began to multiply, both the line of Seth and Cain had many children. You know what begins to happen? The two camps begin to notice each other. The line of Seth, who calls upon the name of the Lord, begin to notice the sons of man, the line of Cain. They start hanging out with one another. The sons of Seth notice the daughters of Cain. They then marry one another. 2The sons of God saw that the daughters of man were attractive. And they took as their wives any they chose.” This is the start of something not so nice. Can you imagine living all these years, 900 years? As people get progressively older, they get set in their ways. We have a term for that, “You can’t teach old dogs new tricks.” I even feel like that.  What I’m hoping is that it’s God word grounding me in. Just imagine if you lived 900 years how set you’d be in your ways. We all know life doesn’t just stand still. Life is always changing. God sees the people he created and he sees the sinfulness of their hearts. It’s growing bigger and bigger. His people are treating each other badly. Even us, it’s a dog-eat-dog world out there. Just imagine if we lived 900 years, that’s exactly the setting of this day. So God says in verse three, “My Spirit shall not abide in man forever, for he is flesh: his days shall be 120 years.” In other words, God shortened the lifespan of man. That is an act of mercy. Can you imagine the atrocities that person would achieve if you lived that many years? God saw the world. “5The Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intention of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.” God is looking at all of us and seeing this.

Then it says, “8But Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord.” It goes on to explain how righteous Noah was. When we read this we are tempted to think that Noah being faithful and righteous is amazing. That’s not the amazing part. What we know is that Noah wasn’t righteous. He was not perfect. There was an indictment that God gives- the wickedness of man was great and every intention of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. Noah is a man. That’s an indictment for every man and every woman. The amazing thing is, not Noah’s righteousness, but that God finds favor in Noah. How can God find favor on anybody? The answer is God is not only good, but he is merciful. If God was only good, that means he’s just, which means he would have to wipe out everybody. Yet, not only is He good, but he is full of mercy. God sees the heart of man and knows you and me to the ‘t’. He knows how evil we are, every intention of who we are is evil.

We see that Noah finds favor in the eyes of the Lord. What made him so different? One of things is that Noah walked with God. 9These are the generations of Noah. Noah was a righteous man, blameless in his generation. Noah walked with God.” Where did we hear that? We heard that from his great-great grandfather Enoch, who also walked with the Lord. There is a similarity in the fact that Enoch, his grandfather, walked with the Lord.  Noah now walks with the Lord. There’s the key, the walking with the Lord. “Okay that’s great Pastor Kenny, God does love Noah. God does show favor upon Noah, but how about me?” After all that’s why you’re here right? I’ll get to that. God has a plan to wipe away the whole world. “Oh, that’s not fair.” Remember, we went through that. If God was only good, then he would have to wipe away all of us. God is merciful so he finds favor in Noah. My argument is that God shows favor to you and me. When God is making this plan, when he is about to wipe away humanity because of the fact that they were so evil to one another and it’s continually growing, his act of mercy is to wipe them clean. How does that work? You ever have a beta fish? Pastor Brendon had one. It died in about two days. The beta fish is always left alone. Don’t you just want to put it with another beta fish and say, “Hey, you two, you guys are lonely aren’t you?” If you don’t know anything about beta fishes they are vicious. If you keep them together they will fight each other until the death. If you were a nice kid you’d put them all in one fish bowl, until next thing you know there is one left. The merciful thing was to separate them. You tell a kid that he will think it’s unfair. Listen. In a world that is torturing one another and treating each other really wrong, the merciful thing was for God to destroy the earth. In God’s plan of bringing judgment on the world, he had mercy upon Noah. If all of humanity is decimated and there’s only one family that is there, you know who else is there? You and me. We are there. God puts us in his plan. You know who else is there? Our beloved Jesus.

Through the line of Noah, eventually comes Abraham, Jesse, Israel, King David, Solomon, and eventually Jesus Christ himself. He is the hope for a hopeless world. Is God good? Yes, he is good. He is so good that he needs to judge evil, which I and all humanity are apart of, but God is merciful. So God sends His one and only Son for you and me. When we believe and have a relationship, we have an opportunity to walk with God along side of him. Sound familiar? Like with Enoch, Noah, and Abraham.  You have an opportunity to walk with God. You have an opportunity to introduce God to other people, to show them the plan that God had man- the hope for a hopeless world. My Lord, God loves you. My Lord, Jesus Christ loves you. Jesus Christ, the Son of God, literally died for you. In other words, you know that God is about to set a plan where he is about to judge the world through a flood? When Jesus Christ died on the cross he took all the flood unto himself so that you and I may live. If you believe in that, if you have faith in that, and if you would practice by walking with Lord, having a relationship by being a faithful friend. God doesn’t just leave it up to your will. He sends the Holy Spirit unto the people who believe. He doesn’t just send the Holy Spirit, but he sends people who have the Holy Spirit, i.e. pastors, leaders, friends,  and family, to keep you accountable so you can all walk together. Have you ever tried to do a marathon all by yourself? It stinks. Not that I ever did it, but I did walk it once. I walked with nine other guys and we finished it. If I were to do it all by myself, I wouldn’t have been able to do it. God provided friends and we walked and held each other accountable. We finished it. Be part of the group. Know and have the eyes to see whom God is providing. God is providing so much and we are just so blind to see. Open your eyes. You don’t have to be insecure. God’s plan alone is the hope for the hopeless world. We find that plan in Scripture. Let’s learn that plan together.

August 16, 2015 [Genesis 4:25 - Genesis 5]

I don’t have Facebook, my wife doesn’t check her Facebook too much, apparently. During the middle of service, I kept on getting these emails and texts and it happened to be from Steve Kim, Pastor Steve, my good friend that spoke last week. He said, “Hey South Africa..., (they either call me South Africa or Kenya, because he once heard my mom say, “Kenny-ya” so they called me Kenya, or as you heard last week, “Crazy Kenny.” He said, “Hey, South Africa, what’s wrong with you? Your not checking your mail, your wife is not checking her mail? I wrote a letter to your church.” Well, I just got it. It’s hot off the press!

Letter from Pastor Steve
Greetings form the Lord Jesus Christ. It was truly wonderful meeting, you last Lord’s day. Thank you for the honor of bringing God’s word as well as welcoming me and my family. Many of you ask of Pastor Kenny’s stories of Boston days. As fun, memorable, and crazy as those days were, it appears to me, the best “Kenny” stories are being made now with his loving family as well as the loving family of God, CCC. I’ve met many pastors in my day, Pastor Kenny and Dami  are one of the most dedicated, sacrificial servants of God. So you’re blessed to have them, CCC. Likewise, CCC has to be one of the most joyful and vibrant churches i’ve seen in a very very long time. We throughly enjoy our times there, our kids who don’t like visiting churches, wishes they could go back. So Pastors’ Kenny and Brendon are also blessed to have such a supportive body in Christ. I’m sure that a loose soccer victory will come sooner rather than later. May Christ be honored, treasured, proclaimed and witnessed as you continually grow together. Ephesians 3:20-21 “Now to him who is able to do things far more abundantly than we could ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to him be the glory and to the church for all generations, forever and ever. His Best, Pastor Steve.

Where is the hope?
Hope. hope is a wonderful thing. there are lots of things you can do when you have hope, there are lots of things you can’t do when you’re hopeless. There was a french woman that wanted to swim across the English Channel. All the boats were there, and it was foggy. She’s swimming and swimming and she reached a point where she couldn’t go on. As her body was aching, she started giving up. She couldn’t do it. She was pretty close, but she’d given up hope. She couldn’t do it. A year passes ,she tried again. She swam and kept swimming and she, again got to a point where she was really tired. She felt like her body couldn’t take it anymore. As her body was deteriorating, her coach was paddling alongside her, in a boat. He said, “I see it, It’s straight ahead, that’s it. I see it, I see the land." She kept swimming and she completed it. What was the difference? The difference was hope, there was the end of the line, it was just a little bit away. “  Hope. We all need hope in our days. If you live life more than just a couple of months, actually, you don’t often get your own way. A lot of times in life, we tend to lose hope. "Is there an end to this thing? What is life for?" You see, for the Christian , the world is not as it seems. we don’t merely look at the world, we see the world through the lens of God. So what does God see? In the last chapter of Genesis , we saw Cain, where the older brother killed the younger brother out of a sense of jealousy and a sense of entitlement. When you sin, you naturally go away from God. That’s how we’re designed. The more we settle with sin, the more and more we fall away from God. That’s exactly what happened to Cain. He became a wanderer, and he left God. He built a city, he settled, and he named it after his image, his son. We see a continual growing of that. Cain’s family, to survive without God, became technologically sound. They played the lyre, knew how to bend metal, made trumpets. You see that in our day in age, Christian artists vs. secular artists, For example, Keith Green, you don’t know him. But, Frank Sinatra, he’s great! We know the popular Hip hop, and R & B artists, because that is all that they have to their legacy. We see that, we live in a godless society. We expose ourselves in magazines, and we all want to look like that. We want to look like Giselle, or professional athletes. We like beauty and brains, power and influence. As Christians, we look at that say, “Where is the hope?” Where is God in all these things?” As we read the end of chapter 4 that is where we are right now. There is a little section that says, “And Adam knew his wife again, and she bore a son and called his name Seth, for she said, “God has appointed for me another offspring instead of Abel, for Cain killed him.” To Seth also a son was born, and he called his name Enosh. At that time people began to call upon the name of the Lord.” (v. 1-3) There’s hope. There’s hope. We see that.

There’s a problem, it’s death.
In Chapter 5 we begin with a brand new genealogy. "This is the book of the generations of Adam. When God created man, he made him in the likeness of God. Male and female he created them, and he blessed them and named them Man when they were created. When Adam had lived 130 years, he fathered a son in his own likeness, after his image, and named him Seth." Cain is not apart of it. Because the bible is concerned of one thing, the lineage of God, where Jesus Christ will come. That’s what the bible is concerned about. People might say, “If the bible is so perfect, why was creation written in that way?” because that’s not the purpose of the bible. We see that it is not perfect. There is even a problem when we see the genealogy here, we see a pattern, starting in verse 4, "The days of Adam after he fathered Seth were 800 years; and he had other sons and daughters. Thus all the days that Adam lived were 930 years, and he died. When Seth had lived 105 years, he fathered Enosh. Seth lived after he fathered Enosh 807 years and had other sons and daughters. Thus all the days of Seth were 912 years, and he died.When Enosh had lived 90 years, he fathered Kenan. Enosh lived after he fathered Kenan 815 years and had other sons and daughters. Thus all the days of Enosh were 905 years, and he died. When Kenan had lived 70 years, he fathered Mahalalel. Kenan lived after he fathered Mahalalel 840 years and had other sons and daughters. Thus all the days of Kenan were 910 years, and he died.” and he died, and he died, and he died and he died. We are presented with a problem, death. Death comes to all, just like chapter four, the world seemed hopeless because Cain killed Abel, but there was  little bit of hope. There was Seth and a little remnant started calling upon the name of the Lord. Even in that lineage there is a problem, death. we may ask, "Lord, how can there be death even among your people?” There's a problem, that problem is death.

God finds a way
We make movies about these. Fountain of Youth. Or movies where there are donor bodies to live longer, or some sort of technology to save us. We see that, because humanity longs for that, movies are from our deepest desire. Who wouldn’t like having power, like having blades come out of you, made out of Adamantium, this fictional metal that’s indestructible. Who wouldn’t want to be the Hulk? These heroes cheat death. But death is a reality and life is short. The bible knows that. The bible is  saying, yes, the bad ones die, but also the good ones die. Death comes to all.There’s a huge problem, but as we go on, there’s a little blip on the screen. We say, "What’s going on? There’s glimmer of hope. We got life here!" In verses 21-24“ When Enoch had lived 65 years, he fathered Methuselah. Enoch walked with God after he fathered Methuselah 300 years and had other sons and daughters. Thus all the days of Enoch were 365 years. Enoch walked with God, and he was not, for God took him.” He ceased to exist, God took him. God figured out a way to defeat death, somehow. You don’t understand the theological ramifications. God is all powerful, if God says it, he has to do it. He is perfect and whatever he utters is perfect and if whatever he utters is perfect, it has to utter into eternity. Truth, rings into eternity, and what is truth? God’s word is truth. How can Enoch walk with God? How can God coexist with a sinner like Enoch? I don’t know. You ever think about that? I don’t know. But somehow God was able to do it. God was able to take a sinful man to heaven. There’s hope.

the True Noah
We see that life goes on, somehow life goes on. In verse 25 to the end, "When Methuselah had lived 187 years, he fathered Lamech. Methuselah lived after he fathered Lamech 782 years and had other sons and daughters. Thus all the days of Methuselah were 969 years, and he died.  We concentrate on this person, Lamech, "When Lamech had lived 182 years, he fathered a son and called his name Noah, saying, “Out of the ground that the Lord has cursed, this one shall bring us relief from our work and from the painful toil of our hands.” Lamech lived after he fathered Noah 595 years and had other sons and daughters. Thus all the days of Lamech were 777 years, and he died. After Noah was 500 years old, Noah fathered Shem, Ham, and Japheth.” Noah means rest.  Lamech must have been a hard worker, and to raise his family. He ’s looking at the amount of work he is doing, and it's’ just not paying off. The world is hard. So as his child comes into this world, his hope for this child is that he can give us rest. Rest from this toil. We know the Noah story, Noah does bring rest to this world, through flood and judgement, that wipes everybody. But death is still a problem. It’s alright there’s hope. Through Noah and through his descendants would come the true Noah, Jesus Christ, God’s son. He makes a way for you and I. Just like for Enoch, he made a way for us to walk with God.

You see brothers and sisters, Jesus Christ is the Son of the living God. Jesus Christ, is God incarnate. God saw the problems of our world, the problems of you and I. "Death, Death, and Death". What God says is ,”No more,” I‘m going to send my one and beloved son, and bring hope to a hopeless and dying world." He died and went to hell, and completely died. Dead as can be. To replace our death. God wants you to walk with him. Be his friend. When you have a good friend, it’s hard to hide from him. A friend has a full access to your life. Jesus wants to full access to your life. Jesus provides other friends, servants. Pastors, teachers, each other. As you get closer to Christ, as you walk with Christ you will walk with “Christ buddies” they are called “christians” and the "church.” So that you may overcome death, because Jesus demolished death on the cross, so that you can walk with Christ into heaven. Just like Enoch. Brothers and sisters, beloved CCC, Believe. Trust. Obey. Listen to what God’s says.