By faith Enoch was translated that he should not see death; and was not found, because God had translated him…
Did you ever witness the transit of a planet across the disc of the sun? Ah! but the transit of a soul from truth to truth, by what glass shall we notice that? By what glass shall we tell how the mind marches in its orb — how the spirit advances in its sphere? By what chronology shall we estimate the translation of the soul? But here we have that wonderful fact in the history of man — the history of a soul's translation. On this world God will never allow His children to be found longer than they can be useful, either for His glory or their own growth. Even on earth, amidst all the blunders of our most imperfect sociology, what the man is after his translation, is, in more sensible circles, to be inferred from what he was before. There is a young man in my chapel who, to-morrow, will vacate an old inferior seat, held for many years at his desk, and mount to that envied and coveted place — first in the office; second only to that confidential post in the second room. Yesterday, in the office of the principal of the firm, his vigilance, his conscientiousness, his disposition, were all subjects of praise; and before this translation he has had this testimony — that he has pleased his employer. Among the long dun wolds of Kent there was great and unusual merry-making, on the farm of Henry Gibbons, this Christmas; for, although he was leaving his farm of one hundred and fifty acres, he was going to one of five hundred acres. To him, six months since, said his landlord, "Henry, you know at Christmas the farm of Beechy Hollow will be vacant, and I love that farm. I was born and brought up there, and I must have somebody there I can trust. Now, that farm you shall have, for I can trust you." Thus in all the translations that are exemplary on earth, and which are removed from the influences of corruption and error, in every state of the advance the progressive spirit has this testimony — that he has pleased before his translation. What right have we to expect a higher rank before we have filled our present duty? You covet more. You have, I assure you, as much honour as you can bear. You have as many duties as you can fulfil. Believe me, there is an exact relation between your power of profitable possession and your power of expenditure. "He had this testimony, that he pleased God." It was the testimony of faith. "By faith Enoch was translated." In the scale of greatness, by which we rise to please God, the first place is assigned to faith, because it interprets the life; amidst abounding iniquity and hardness of heart, he yielded himself to God, to God's pleasure and will. "He pleased God." He walked with God. By this sublime phrase, I believe something more is intended than we can understand. Amidst the sublime scenes of those primeval woods and vales, what secret communings he held! There were then few illustrious progenitors: kings, statesmen, seers, and poets — he could not walk with those; he could only walk with God, With him now, the simple, poor man, to whom the Bible unfolds its treasures and prayer its armoury, and meditation its sacred refectory, and paradise its distant gleaming palace — with him may this man compare. Like Enoch, he walks alone with God in his simplicity and holy dignity. "He pleased God" — he was a preacher of righteousness, and part of his sermon has come down even to our own age. Very dreadful are the words of a man who comes from intimate fellowship with Divine holiness, to pour his pathos and his pity and his indignation over a lost world. Like Jonathan Edwards, a soul — a pity — a heart of holiness — a hermit existence — and a speech of fire. And then God took him — after three hundred and sixty-five years had been given to him, God took him; to show to the ungodly world that he was not limited to the ordinary operations of the laws of Nature, and to proclaim to the race of giants, the children of Cain, His authentication of His servant's life — He translated him.
(E. P. Hood.)
Parallel VersesKJV: By faith Enoch was translated that he should not see death; and was not found, because God had translated him: for before his translation he had this testimony, that he pleased God.
WEB: By faith, Enoch was taken away, so that he wouldn't see death, and he was not found, because God translated him. For he has had testimony given to him that before his translation he had been well pleasing to God.