In our study of Genesis chapter five, we look at the good fruit that was from Adam's family tree. We will see a list of ten of his descendants and we are reminded that the number ten is associated with the earthly completion of the divine order (God's plan). We will see God's plan for man unfold in the names of Adam's family line.
This is the written account of Adam's line. When God created man, he made him in the likeness of God. He created them male and female and blessed them. And when they were created, he called them 'man'
The name Adam means "man" and we see that his family tree begins with the fact that he was created in God's image. It is important to understand that God created us to be in a world without sin and to know nothing but goodness. They were blessed (without fear) because they did not know that evil even existed until the fall.
When Adam had lived 130 years, he had a son in his own likeness, in his own image; and he named him Seth. After Seth was born, Adam lived 800 years and had other sons and daughters. Altogether, Adam lived 930 years, and then he died.
Adam was created in the image of God but, as we see here, Seth was created in the image of his dad. This image had been tainted by sin and so, through Adam, all men would be born with sin and its effects. The name Seth means "appointed" as he was chosen to be the blessed line of Adam. In chapter 4, we saw that he was appointed to replace Abel the son that God showed favor and was murdered by his brother.
When Seth had lived 105 years, he became the father of Enosh. And after he became the father of Enosh, Seth lived 807 years and had other sons and daughters. Altogether, Seth lived 912 years, and then he died.
Seth had a son named Enosh and his name comes from the Hebrew root word of anash which means "mortal". We are reminded that God had told Adam that he would die if he ate of the fruit (Genesis 2:16). This was passed on throughout mankind.
When Enosh had lived 90 years, he became the father of Kenan. And after he became the father of Kenan, Enosh lived 815 years and had other sons and daughters. Altogether, Enosh lived 905 years, and then he died.
Kenan whose name means "sorrow" was the next in the family tree. We see that the number of years that each generation lives is going down. This is another effect of sin in the world.
When Kenan had lived 70 years, he became the father of Mahalalel. And after he became the father of Mahalalel, Kenan lived 840 years and had other sons and daughters. Altogether, Kenan lived 910 years, and then he died.
The name Mahalalel comes from two root words. Mahalal means "blessed" or "praise" while el is a name for God.
When Mahalalel had lived 65 years, he became the father of Jared. And after he became the father of Jared, Mahalalel lived 830 years and had other sons and daughters. Altogether, Mahalalel lived 895 years, and then he died.
The name Jared comes from the root word yaradh which means "shall come down". This would be an odd name for a child unless it was inspired by God.
When Jared had lived 162 years, he became the father of Enoch. And after he became the father of Enoch, Jared lived 800 years and had other sons and daughters. Altogether, Jared lived 962 years, and then he died.
The name Enoch means "teaching" and he was the first of what was to be four generations of preachers sharing the Word of God.
When Enoch had lived 65 years, he became the father of Methuselah. And after he became the father of Methuselah, Enoch walked with God 300 years and had other sons and daughters. Altogether, Enoch lived 365 years. Enoch walked with God; then he was no more, because God took him away.
The name Methuselah is from the words muth meaning "death" and shalach meaning "to bring" or "to send forth". We see, here, that Enoch did not just live and die as the others were described but that he "walked with God" and then was taken by God to be with Him. He was immediately translated (changed) to his heavenly body and this is a picture of the coming rapture of the church (see 1 Thess. 4:17). He taught us, by his example, that there is a difference between just living for self and putting God first.
When Methuselah had lived 187 years, he became the father of Lamech. And after he became the father of Lamech, Methuselah lived 782 years and had other sons and daughters. Altogether, Methuselah lived 969 years, and then he died.
The name Lamech means "lament" or "despairing". It is interesting to note that Cain also had a relative by this name who, as we saw in chapter 4, completely turned his back on the will of God.
When Lamech had lived 182 years, he had a son. He named him Noah and said, 'He will comfort us in the labor and painful toil of our hands caused by the ground the Lord has cursed.' After Noah was born, Lamech lived 595 years and had other sons and daughters. Altogether, Lamech lived 777 years, and then he died.
The name "Noah" comes from the root "nacham" which means "to bring relief" or "comfort". Lamech did not understand that the comfort that Noah would bring was not relief from working the soil but a cleansing of the earth and redemption from sin through a Jewish Messiah.
After Noah was 500 years old, he became the father of Shem, Ham, and Japheth.
Through these sons, the world would again be populated and God would have a chosen people. In this family tree, we see the promise that Lamech saw in Noah. When all of the meanings of the names are put into order, we get a message from God that goes something like this: Man was appointed to die and this brought sorrow to the Father but praise God because He shall come down teaching the way to send forth death in sorrow and bring life to His people. This reminds us of the fact that God had a plan for our salvation and it has always been the same. That plan is belief in Jesus Christ as His Son and our Savior.