Through the Ark
Genesis 5:32 – And Noah was five hundred years old: and Noah begat Shem, Ham, and Japheth.
If you are familiar with societal and familial structure in the days of Noah, you realize it was strongly patriarchal. Communities, towns, or what the Bible calls cities of those times were often established by and governed by the largest or oldest established family. Cities had kings who ruled the city and a territory around the city. The eldest male in a broad family setting would be considered the patriarch, and would carry great influence. With that in mind, consider the following.
Methuselah, who lived to be 969 years old, was 187 years old when his son, Lamech, was born. Lamech was 182 years old when Noah was born, making Methuselah 369 years old. Noah was 600 years old when the flood came (Genesis 7:6). Lamech died before the flood, and before his father, Methuselah, died. During all the years Methuselah lived as the oldest male member of his entire family clan, he was the patriarch. As the grandfather of Noah, he was Noah’s patriarch. Now one more point needs to be made. In the year that Methuselah died, the flood came. While the Scriptures do not plainly declare it to be so, I believe that as Noah’s patriarch, Methuselah would have known about the ark being built, and I also believe that he would certainly have walked about in the construction site, if not in the ark itself while he was still alive. You see, in the same year that Methuselah died, two other things happened. Methuselah’s death made Noah the patriarch of the clan, and the flood waters came upon the earth. What I am saying should be clear. Methuselah was an influence in the life of Noah during the entire duration of his work in building the ark. Now let’s consider this yet further.
Enoch was the father of Methuselah. Methuselah had grown up and lived under Enoch’s influence for 300 years. Based on Biblical text, a few things should be quite obvious. Since God never changes, one of the great contributing factors of Methuselah’s great age was that he honored his parents. Methuselah surely learned from Enoch what it meant to walk with God. One of the elements of honoring one’s father is to carry forth his heritage. It would then seem that Methuselah was a man of wisdom and godly counsel, and as patriarch to Noah, stood in a place of strategic influence. So, here is my query for today. Does it not seem to be a wise thing to do to walk with men of wisdom, maturity, and understanding, to hear their voice, and to heed their input for your life? I wonder about the life of Noah and the influence Methuselah had on his grandson over a period of 600 years as his patriarch. Take a walk with the right people.
Manna for Today – Psalm 1:1-6; 1 John 1:7-9; Genesis 5:1-32