Adam, Seth, Enosh, Kenan, Mahalalel, Jared, Enoch, Methuselah, Lamech, Noah. (1 Chronicles 1:1–3 NIV).
This list of names does not make an interesting reading to many. So they skip reading this portion of the Scriptures. This disinterest is also because people are not aware why it was written: This book was written to the Jewish people who returned from exile and 70 years of captivity in Babylon. Their nation was gone; their temple also had been destroyed. Jerusalem was in ruins. Therefore this book was written to encourage a people who had lost hope in the future of their nation. It is in that light that this book has to be read. It was to remind these people that God was still working in their lives that this book begins by reminding them of their past from the time of Adam.
This list reminds you too of many things. Adam reminds you of origins. You are also part of this list if it is traced out to you; since all of us came from Adam.
Then, Seth reminds you of continuity of likeness. After Cain had killed his brother Abel, another son was born to Adam who was named Seth. It is written that “he had a son in his own likeness, in his own image.” This reminds us of the spiritual principle that God is longing to see His children bear the image and likeness of His beloved Son, Jesus.
Enosh, Seth’s son reminds us of God being remembered by people. It was during his time that men began to call on the name of the Lord. It reminds us of God’s eternal desire that we call upon Him and worship Him.
Later, Enoch reminds us to walk with God. His family life did not prevent him from walking with God. He prophesied about the Second Coming of Jesus Christ too (see Jude 14). In a sense he experienced it as he was taken away by God. It reminds us to look forward to the glorious appearing of Jesus Christ.
Then, Methuselah. He was the man who lived longest on the earth, 969 years. Yet he too died. It reminds us that we do not have a permanent home here on earth. But if we trust Jesus, we have eternal life.
Then there is Noah. He reminds us of the ark. There is safety only inside the ark which is a picture of Jesus. If you hide in Him; the flood of judgment will not destroy you!
As you continue to read the list of names in this book, remember that throughout your past history spanning many generations up to Adam; God had been working. Therefore, even when the future looks unpromising, remember your God who was at work in your past generations and is at work in your life today. You also have a future in Him!