What does it look like to “walk with God?”

Genesis is the book of beginnings. Specifically, the book is about the beginning of the human race. In Genesis we learn

  • God alone is the creator of the universe
  • God created man to be in relationship with Him
  • Man broke that relationship by disobeying the command of God
  • We then see that God is a God of judgment
  • God made provided a means to repair that relationship


God defined some rules for Adam and Eve. They broke those rules and sinned against God. The result was separation from God, i.e. spiritual death. But they also received physical death as a penalty for their sin.

No natural deaths are recorded before Gen 5:1 (the only recorded death was that of Abel). But in chapter 5 we are certainly drawn to the statement “and he died” (Gen 5:5, 8, 11, 14, 17, 20, 27, 31).

In spite of human achievements the curse of death reigned in human history. God used physical death to teach us about spiritual death. Death is all about separation: Physical death is separation of the soul from the body; Spiritual death is separation of the person from God.

The story of man is telling. Man was created in the image of God. He had the ability to relate directly to God. But man sinned. Their relationship with God had been broken. We see an interesting event in Gen 3:8. Adam and Eve were in the garden

And they heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden. 

This is the first introduction of the concept of “walking” in Genesis. Notice: God is walking by Himself…in the garden. Sin causes man to hide from God, i.e. not to walk with Him. MAN IS SPIRITUALLY DEAD. But God wants mankind to walk with Him.

“Walking” is used in Genesis to describe the relationship of three men regarding their relationship with God. Genesis tells us that Enoch, Noah, and Abraham “walked” with God.

Enoch Pleased God

We don’t learn much about Enoch. We do see that he fathered Methuselah after he had “walked” with God for 300-years. At the young age (for that time) of 365 years, “he was not, for God took him.” Some have likened this to the first rapture. He simply vanished. In the middle of all the death of chapter 5, Enoch “walked” with God and then God snatched him away. We learn more about Enoch in the New Testament:

  • He was in the hall of faith (Heb 11:5).
  • We see that Enoch was a man of faith and he was taken away so that he did not see death.
  • Before he was taken he had a testimony
  • He pleased God

Noah Found Grace

But Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord. This is the genealogy of Noah. Noah was a just man, perfect in his generations. Noah walked with God. (Gen 6:8-9)

Noah was also in the Hall of Faith. Heb 11:7 says, “By faith Noah, being divinely warned of things not yet seen, moved with godly fear, prepared an ark for the saving of his household, by which he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness which is according to faith.”

From this, we see that he found grace in the eyes of the Lord: That means his habit of life had already been set so that he captured God’s attention—but how?

  • He was a just man
  • He was perfect in his generations
  • He was moved with Godly fear
  • He obeyed God and saved his household—and not only his household but he saved the future of mankind
  • Thus, he was heir of the righteous according to faith

Abraham Counted as Righteous

The story of Abraham is the central consideration of Genesis. God saw something special in Abraham and he called him out of his pagan life to go to the land that God will show him (Gen 12:1-3).

Now the Lord had said to Abram: “Get out of your country, From your family And from your father’s house, To a land that I will show you. I will make you a great nation; I will bless you And make your name great; And you shall be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, And I will curse him who curses you; And in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.” 

Abraham (75-years-old) has many issues in his life to overcome, but in the end he proved to be faithful to God. Gen 17:1 reports, “When Abram was ninety-nine years old, the Lord appeared to Abram and said to him, “I am Almighty God; walk before Me and be blameless.” Abraham also recognized his walk with God, “But he said to me, ‘The Lord, before whom I walk…” (Gen 24:40).

As with Enoch and Noah, Abraham was also in the Hall of Faith (Heb 11:8, 17). The characteristics of special interest in Abraham and his walk with God include:

  • He obeyed God by faith
    • He went out, not knowing where he was going
    • He was willing to offer up Isaac, his only son—His son of promise
  • He believed God and that was counted as righteousness (Rom 4:3; Gal 3:6)

These three men, walked with God

  1. Enoch—Walked with God and overcame death
  2. Noah—Walked with God and found grace in the eyes of the Lord
  3. Abraham—Walked with God and his faith was counted as righteous

Walking with God

So what does it mean to walk with God? Walking with God is used of one’s continued course of action and life; i.e., the habitual habit and manner of life. Walking with God is a continuous act of being in relationship with God.


Walking with God involves faith in Him: But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him. (Heb 11:6).

  1. Walking with God requires faith in Him, faith in the reality of His existence, and faith in the reality of His responsiveness to one’s faith.
  2. Walking with God inspires believers to look to God’s future rewards based on their present faith.
  3. Walking with God pleases Him
    1. Our goal must be to please God
    2. Therefore, walking with God involves living by faith and this brings God’s favor.
    3. He is pleased with believers when they believe Him, i.e. when they walk by faith.
    4. To please the Lord and to walk with Him are inseparable factors.
  4. Walking with God is not legalistic adherence to the law.
    1. Living each day by faith—regardless of the circumstances—must be our continual goal.
    2. Faith is necessary for both salvation and sanctification. But this is not done through legalism.
    3. Our focus should be on Jesus Christ; only that focus can build confidence and trust in Him.
  5. Walking with God overcomes death and brings life
    1. Walking with God is the way to life—the way to victory over the problems for today and tomorrow.
    2. The reign of death will come to an end and the faithful will reign in life through Jesus Christ—Rom 5:21says, so that as sin reigned in death, even so grace might reign through righteousness to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. 

Today, we can only walk with God through Jesus Christ. Jesus is the life (John 14:6)—I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. What does this mean? Life, spiritual life, is only available to us through Jesus the Christ.

Our faith must be placed in God, the Creator of the universe, and in His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord in whom we have forgiveness of sin and life everlasting. God must be the object of our faith…faith cannot be based in us and our good works.

Four principles reveal the degree to which we are “walking with God”

  1. Walking with God involves faith in Him
  2. Walking with God pleases Him
  3. Walking with God is not legalistic adherence to the law
  4. Walking with God overcomes death and brings life

How big is the object of your faith? How well are you walking with God? 

Don’t let Him walk alone in the garden and don’t think you can hide behind the trees to avoid Him. He sees the real you.

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