"At that time I beheld the Ancient of Days,while he sat upon the throne of his glory, while the book of the living was opened in his presence, and while all the powers which were above the heavens stood around and before him." Book of Enoch 47:3 (Ethiopic, Artisan pub)
Since it's English translation in the 1800's from texts found in Ethiopia in 1768, The Book of Enoch (known today as 1st Enoch) has made quite a stir in academic circles. 1 Enoch has been authenticated as existing and in wide use before the church age (most scholars now date it at 200 BC). Multiple copies were discovered in 1948 in the Dead Sea Scrolls. This of course has caused many to wonder why it is not included in modern Bibles...
"Thou has seen what Azazyel has done, how he has taught every species of iniquity upon the earth... Samyaza also has taught sorcery... They have gone together to the daughters of men, have lain with them... The women likewise have brought forth giants..." Enoch 9:5-8
Particular to this site, parts of The Book of Enoch tell the story of wicked angels who abducted and mated with human women, resulting in the hybrid race known throughout secular and Biblical history as the Nephilim (giants, KJV).
While this account encompasses only the first four verses of Genesis 6 (but see also Genesis 3:15, 2 Peter 2:4-6, Jude 6-7), Enoch 1 relates this story in great detail. It lists the names of 18 "prefect" angels - of 200 - who committed this sin. According to the text, these angels also taught mankind the "making of swords and knives, shields and breastplates (metallurgy); ... magical medicine, dividing of roots (medicinal and hallucinogenic use); incantations, astrology, the seeing of the stars, the course of the moon, as well as the deception of man."
By Noah's time, "The earth also was corrupt (wasting - KJV notation) before God, and the earth was filled with violence... all flesh had corrupted his way upon the earth." Gen 6:10-11. Afraid of the consequences, these angels appeal to Enoch to intercede with God on their behalf; God instead uses Enoch to deliver a message of judgment against them. Aside from the "taking of wives," God states that he would not forgive them for teaching mankind magical arts and warlike ways. As summarized by Pastor Chris Ward:
"According to the Book of Enoch (Not a Canonical Text), God judged the angels for producing the Nephilim. God decreed that the fallen angels (Watchers) were to be cast into Tartarus. The Nephilim were also judged and it was determined that their bodies were to return to the earth in peace but their souls were doomed to wander the earth forever (as) wandering spirits..." (Visit Pastor Chris'sEnoch pagewhich reprints this dialogue between God and Enoch, and The Origin of Demonsfor more.)
The increasing acceptance and popularization of this important book among theologians helps cast light on the extra-terrestrial hypothesis (ETH) in general. Enoch is an ancient writing which states that angels (not true space aliens, as stated by many UFO cults, and popular modern authors Erich Von Daniken and Zechariah Sitchin) visited ancient Earth and polluted mankind's DNA. While this case can easily be made solely from the canonized Bible (see Relevant Bible Verses), Enoch is yet another witness against these bad interpretations of Earth's predelulvian era (i.e., before the flood of Genesis 6). The fact that they also gave mankind technology which supposedly "advanced our race" (but which we actually used to destroy each other, and to incur God's judgment), lends itself to a more sinister understanding of today's UFO phenomenon...
Genesis 6 / Book of Enoch
Today / Any episode of the X-Files
Supernatural Beings identified as angels Supernatural Beings identified as ET'sTook as wives "any whom they chose"Abduction Phenomenon Hybrid Race of NephilimMissing Fetuses, Hybrids, Cloning Introduced Destructive Technology: Weapons of Warfare / Psychotropic Drugs / Astrology & Sorcery Hitler's Foo Fighters / Roswell Crash / "Back-engineering" of Stealth Bombers, etc / Occult Arts, New Age DoctrinesWorshipped as Gods (Annanuki) / Nephilim hybrids were "heroes of old, men of renown..." Gen 6:4 - the factual basis for Greco-Roman deitiesZechariah Sitchin / UFO Cults / Immunity for Abduction Crimes / Called "Spirit Guides, Ascended Masters and/or "Space Brothers""And the Lord said, "I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the Earth ... but Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord." Genesis 6:7-8
"As it was in the days of Noah, so shall it be at the coming of the Son of Man..." Jesus Christ, Matthew 24:37
What other evidences for Enoch's authenticity (as a sacred text) are there? Why isn't it in the Bible today? Jesus said that angels can't have sex, proving this book's falsehood...
The idea that Jesus said that angels cannot have sex is a very common objection to The Book of Enoch and the angelic understanding of Genesis 6 in general. However it is also a very common misinterpretation of what he actually said. Go Hereto read what he said (Matt 22:30), and to study this topic. Beyond that misunderstanding, there is no doubt today that The Book of Enoch was one of the most widely accepted and revered books of Jewish culture and doctrine in the century leading up to Jesus' birth.
It is usually noted first that New Testament author Jude directly quotes from 1 Enoch - "Behold he comes with ten thousands of his saints to execute judgment ..." (1 Enoch 2, Jude 14-15). Additionally, "the citations of Enoch by the Testaments of the Twelve Patriarchs... show that at the close of the second century B.C., and during the first century B.C., this book was regarded in certain circles as inspired" (1).
Aside from Jude, Peter and Paul's affirmationsof the angelic/hybrid interpretation, recognition of 1 Enoch "... is given amply in the Epistle of Barnabus, and in the third century by Clement and Irenaeus" (1). The Catholic Church's Origen - known as "the father of theology" - affirmed both the Book of Enoch and the fact that angels could and did co-habitate with the daughters of men. He even warned against possible angelic and/or Nephilim infiltration of the church itself. Oddly, while thousands of his writings are still considered by them as "sacred," this very issue got him labeled as a heretic when the faulty Sons of Seth"doctrine" was conceived! (2)
Additionally, the Coptic Orthodox Churches of Egypt (est'd appx 50-100 A.D.) still include Enoch as canonized text in the Ethiopic Old Testament (2). This fact alone should carry great weight for Western Christians when honestly studying the "case" for Enoch. Given their 1900+ year history, the fact that they were never "ruled" by Rome's theology, and that they currently number over 10 million - this is a VERY significant portion of The Body of Christ that has historically esteemed 1 Enoch as inspired doctrine.
Some today (who do not seem to believe in the inspiration of scripture) claim that most major themes of the New Testament were in fact "borrowed" from 1 Enoch. "It appears that Christianity later adopted some of its ideas and philosophies from this book, including the Final Judgment, the concept of demons, the Resurrection, and the coming of a Messiah and Messianic Kingdom" (3). No doubt, these themes are major parts of 1 Enoch, and appear there as complete theologies a full 200 years before any other NT writings.
Christian author Stephen Quayle writes, "Several centuries before and after the appearance of Jesus in Jerusalem, this book had become well known to the Jewish community, having a profound impact upon Jewish thought. The Book of Enoch gave the Jews their solar calendar, and also appears to have instilled the idea that the coming Messiah would be someone who had pre-existed as God (4)." Translator RH Charles also stated that "the influence of 1 Enoch on the New Testament has been greater than all of the other apocryphal and pseudepigraphical books put together" (3). The conclusions aresomewhat inescapable given Enoch's dating and wide acceptance between 200 B.C. and 200 A.D. - either Christian authors, and especially the Nicene Council, did plagiarize their theology directly from Enoch, or the original version of Enoch was also inspired.
James H Charlesworth, director of Dead Sea Studies at Yale University, says in The Old Testament Pseudepigrapha & The New Testament(Trinity Press International), "I have no doubt that the Enoch groups deemed the Book of Enoch as fully inspired as any biblical book. I am also convinced that the group of Jews behind the Temple Scroll, which is surely pre-Qumranic, would have judged it to be quintessential Torah -- that is, equal to, and perhaps better than, Deuteronomy....Then we should perceive the Pseudepigrapha as they were apparently judged to be: God's revelation to humans(2 & 5)."
But perhaps the most telling argument for 1 Enoch's "inspiration" may well be that the Jewish understanding of the term "Son of Man" as a Messianic title comes - not truly from our Old Testament canon - but from the Book of Enoch! Ever wonder why Jesus refers to himself in the gospels as the "Son of Man" rather than the Son of God? (2) Of over 100 uses of the phrase "son of man" in the OT, it refers almost always to "normal" men (93 times specifically of Ezekiel, and certainly not as Messiah!), but is used only one time in the entire OT, in one of Daniel's heavenly visions, to refer to divinity. Despite the Old Testament's frequent lack of divine application of the phrase, 1 Enoch records several trips to heaven, using the title "Son of Man" unceasingly to refer to the pre-incarnate Christ. Of particular Messianic significance, Enoch describes the following scene (2):
The angels "glorify with all their power of praise; and He sustains them in all that act of thanksgiving while they laud, glorify and exalt the name of the Lord of Spirits forever and ever... Great was their joy. They blessed, glorified and exalted because the name of the Son of Man was revealed to them (1 Enoch 68:35-38)." Both His disciples, and especially the Sanhedrein knew what Jesus was claiming - 84 times in the gospels! - when referring to Himself as the "Son of Man." This claim was considered an obvious blasphemy to the Pharisees & Saducees, but it is eternal life to all who confess that Jesus of Nazareth was, and is, the Son of Man, The Messiah, God in the flesh, The Holy One of Israel, God's Christ - the Lord of All to whom every knee shall bow (Philippians 2:8-10).
Using "normal rules" of scriptural interpretation, we are never to draw firm doctrine from only one passage of scripture. Right? Daniel's single use of "Son of Man" (in a "night vision" at that - Dan 7:13), would not be sufficient to claim that the phrase is indeed Messianic, especially given the other 107 times it is not used in that way. 1 Enoch is the missing "second witness" needed (according to all other rules of interpretation) to understand the phrase's double meaning as an enduring Messianic title. It has been argued ever since Enoch's first English translation, that by using this title so familiar to the Jews, Jesus was actually affirming the truth of this book, that the prophet was taken on many trips to heaven before his "final" translation, and that HE WAS THE ONE whom Enoch saw there - the pre-existent Son of Man, whom Enoch prophesied would judge the souls of all men.
Interestingly, Daniel is ALSO the only OT use of the term "watcher" to ever refer to angels (Daniel 4:13, 17, 23 KJV). Strong's Concordance defines a watcher as a "guardian angel" (Strong's 5894). "The distinguishing character of the Watcher (opposed to other angels in the canon) appears to be that it spends much time among men, overseeing what they are doing. It is also interesting to note that both times one of these angels appeared to Daniel, he took pains to note that it was "an holy one," suggesting that some Watchers are not aligned with God while others are (4)." Found nowhere else in the OT canon but the book of Daniel, "watcher" is patently Enoch's term for these angels. Likewise, Daniel alone used Enoch's term "Son of Man" to refer to the pre-incarnate Christ, adding further intrigue to the case for 1 Enoch's inspiration, and an overall understanding of it's doctrinal acceptance among both Old and New Testament writers.
What we lose out on today by not examining 1 Enoch - even if only for its historical significance - is that it is actually more splendid than ANY OTHER book in our canon in its exultation of Christ as King! It also gives clear, stern and oft-repeated warnings to the unsaved of swift destruction at the Coming of The Lord, but is also full of amazing promises of future glory for the elect! We are of course wise to stay clear of dangerous heresy, but... ask yourself if the below sounds like false doctrine? Keep in mind, this was written at least 200 years before Christ walked the earth, and perhaps before Noah's birth:
Then shall the kings, the princes, and all who possess the earth, glorify Him who has dominion over all things, Him who was concealed; for from eternity the Son of Man was concealed, whom the Most High preserved in the presence of His power and revealed to the elect.
He shall sow the congregation of the saints, and of the elect; and all the elect shall stand before Him in that day. All the kings, the princes, the exalted, and those who rule over the earth shall fall down on their faces before Him, and shall worship Him. They shall fix their hopes on this Son of Man...
Then the sword of the Lord of Spirits shall be drunk from them (the lost); but the saints and the elect shall be safe in that day; nor the face of the sinners and the ungodly shall they thence-forth behold. The Lord of Spirits shall remain over them; And with this Son of Man shall they dwell, eat, lie down, and rise up for ever and ever...
Literally Translated from the Ethiopic by Richard Laurence LL.D. Archbishop of Cashel Late Professor of Hebrew in the University of Oxford
"For more than a century, scholars and church officials debated as to whether or not certain gospels, epistles and apocalypses should be included. For instance, it was long debated which to include in the canon, the Book of Revelation, or the Book of Enoch..." Liberty Magazine - December 7, 1935 (1)
OK! OK! So why is it not in the Bible?
Uncertain as well as multiple authorship, and several slightly varying texts are among the main reasons cited for Enoch not "making it" into the generally recognized canon. In truth, the spiritual agenda(s) of the early Roman Church is most likely the ultimate reason however, and we will examine this agenda here as well. Let's begin with the first two though, before moving to the more incredulous, but quite valid "conspiracy theories."
"The Book of Enoch, like the book of Daniel, was originally written in Aramaic, and partly in Hebrew (1)." While there may have been Hebrew translations during the centuries B.C. (which early church leaders may or may not have had access to), today only the Ethiopic manuscripts exist, as well as some incomplete Greek and Latin translations, plus one Aramaic fragment from the Dead Sea Scrolls. By the time of Jesus' birth, "average" Jews were reading mainly the Greek Septuagint translation of their own Torah (completed 200 B.C.), as a result of their years of foreign captivity and then-current Roman occupation. To coin the vernacular, they had been assimilated. So unless an authentic Aramaic version appears miraculously today, there will never be any completely indisputable way to argue for a modern "canonization" of 1 Enoch, as the originals are lost, probably forever.
The honest problem facing the infant Roman Church of 390 A.D., when first assembling today's Bible, was that the existing copies of 1 Enoch varied, albeit in minor ways. "Unlike the (rest of the) Bible which was carefully copied and checked for errors by Jewish and Christian scribes throughout its history, The Book of Enoch is available in a number of ancient manuscripts that differ slightly from one another... and many errors have crept in... There is no way of knowing which versions are (exactly faithful to) the original and which are the errors. While this doesn't change its stories in any substantial manner, it does make it impossible to anchor beliefs or arguments on any given section... (4)."
Even to those who will rightfully argue that Enoch was unjustly banned, this alone IS a legitimate reason to exclude it from the holy writ. When faced with the task of declaring what is and what is not the "inspired, infallible Word of God," erring on the side of caution and certainty must be the case every time! (Only those who do not believe in the divine inspiration, and modern integrity, of scripture will be dissatisfied with this reasoning. That topic is too far off the subject for this writing, but please at least read this before writing me nasty notes. Also, here's a great site with a history of the English Bible from 500 B.C. to present, for those interested.) So, while 1 Enoch is almost beyond doubt an "inspired" text, the translated copies available (presumably) in 390 A.D., and especially those we have today, could not with any certainty also be classified as "infallible."
Another less important but quite "legitimate" issue is that 1 Enoch is actually a collection of at least four different "books," possibly written by various authors over many centuries, and possibly not by the true Enoch of Genesis 5.
The Artisan Publishers' introduction to The Book of Enoch says "there can be no shadow of doubt" that there is a diversity of authorship and perhaps even time periods represented across the span of 1 Enoch, but that there is also "nonetheless, uniformity." They attribute this to the very possible idea that as God raised up prophets (after Malachi...?), they published under the safety of a revered pseudonym, to avoid persecution and possible death at the hands of the religious powers-that-were, who wanted no "fresh words" from God (1). This could well be the case, but would make the book(s) of Enoch no less inspired of God if true. However, only the NT Book of Hebrews (written centuries closer to the Bible's assembly, with multiple matching manuscripts) has been accepted as canon with such uncertain authorship - without even a good solid guess agreed upon, that is.
Since "the real" Enoch of Genesis 5 was transported to heaven - permanently - it would be no stretch to imagine that it was also a normal experience during his lifetime. After all, the Bible says he walked with God for 300 years! (Genesis 5:22) The first 36 chapters (detailing the watchers' fall) are sometimes only reluctantly attributed to Enoch (given their pre-deluvian history), but there are varying theories regarding the rest of the book(s). For much of the 1800's, it was argued that the remaining chapters were actually the work of an early Christian scribe, but these claims were decisively put to rest with the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls, as were JT Milik's claims that chapters 37-71 were Christian. Charlesworth says "The consensus communis is unparalleled in almost any other area of research; no specialist now argues that I Enoch 37-71 is (written by a first-century) Christian and (that it) postdates the first century... (2) and (5)." With this in mind, we must again face up to the very real dilemma of stating that that either the entire New Testament was "drawn" in a natural, secular way from 1 Enoch - with no supernatural inspiration - or that 1 Enoch and The New Testament are both from God.
It is also considered that possibly a single author assembled older prophets' inspired works around 200 B.C. and simply added Enoch's name to them all, to ensure widespread acceptance - "Hardly a practice that inspires confidence in the text (4)." But in reality, it is no secret academically that certain canonized OT books, as well as Mark's gospel, may have been originally written by another - or even multiple - inspired author(s) and later were also assembled under the inspiration of God by a single author, who put either his own, or the original author's name, to the work. For example, most agree that Moses actually wrote Job's story from other existing texts (or that he knew him personally), before he even wrote Genesis. Most of the Major Prohets and historical books contain clear breaks in the time period, and were finally assembled many years later - as the author "was carried along by the Holy Spirit (1 Peter 2:21)." Christians need to get over the idea that "inspiration" means the writer went into some mystical trance, while God "possessed them" and wrote the Bible. Inspiration simply means they were obedient to God's leading, and wrote what He said OR supernaturally revealed to them, or even that he guided their research, helping them discern truth from error, for the purpose of writing "an orderly account (Luke 1:3)." Here, Luke states that his gospel was an extended research project!
In that vein, I.D.E. Thomas has recently suggested one other possibility perhaps not considered in academic circles before the 1986 publication of The Omega Conspiracy. "Thomas suggests that the compiler may have written his book from texts originally written by Enoch himself. In such a case it would make perfect sense for the compiler to attach Enoch's name to the book for which he had provided the material (4) and (6)."
Even with all of this said, there is still no "clean" explanation for Enoch's 1000-year disappearance from even popular literature though. Despite the above reasons for not canonizing the book, it is painfully apparent that the church did in fact supress The Book of Enoch. Only in studying both the goals and motives - positive and negative - of the Roman Church do the truest reason for Enoch's "fall from grace" become apparent.
(But despite the arguments presented here, please note that I have no intention of bashing the early Roman Catholic Church. Always remember, they have done the world an incredible service by assembling and preserving God's Word for the 1600+ years yet to follow. To make a distinction, the greatest sins and travesties they often stand accused - and guilty of - were not the work or intent of the earliest Church fathers, but of the corrupt political system that grew up in the centuries after the Roman system's formation. "It was not until hundreds of years later (5th - 7th centuries), that the first vestiges of this church government rose where there was a Roman bishop as the head of the Church, making it an official Roman Church functioning similar to today's." (7))
Realistically however, there was also a "point" to the canon. The goal and even eternal function in assembling the earliest Bibles was NOT merely sorting out what was inspired of God and what was not. They also had the specific intent of promoting and preserving a solid doctrinal foundation for all believers in Christ. Like Paul, they had to passionately argue against Gnosticism - "the doctrine of salvation by knowledge (8)," or the idea that gaining "superior" and/or "hidden" knowledge ensures one some higher spiritual position - opposed to a simple obedient faith in Christ.
Arguing for 1 Enoch's "proper place" today, one (seemingly) Gnostic apologist states "Enoch had found and experienced God face-to-face, something which Gnostics strive for. The Church opposed Gnostics... Experiencing God was taboo... Putting a stamp of approval on such a wild tale (Enoch) would have too many people believing that they could experience God for themselves, instead of going into a church and being told what to believe... Those who experienced visions or personal insights became dangerous to the church. They could lead people astray by supporting independent thought and actions (3)." It's quite difficult to seriously consider this argument however, in light of the fact that a more common criticism of Catholocism is that they "worship," or at least perhaps TOO highly esteem, those who have had profound mystical experiences with God! For that matter, the Bible is NOTHING BUT a collection of "those who experienced visions or personal insights." It would quite a thin book if all such stories were left out!
The truth is that Gnostics "strive(d) for" experiencing God without knowing and submitting to Christ or His Body, the church. Even today, the wish to "experience God face-to-face" without Christ's mediation (1 Timothy 2:5) is not just an honest effort to avoid false religion (of which there is much), but to not submit to any spiritual authority at all - whether it be God's Church, God's Word or even God's Christ! It should always be kept in perspective that "the church" was not Rome's, or even man's idea. Jesus said "I will build my church, and the gates of hell will not prevail against it (Mt 16:18)." The early church rightly opposed Gnosticism, but beginning with Paul's letters, not with the Roman Church. Many who passionately promote (or just reprint and sell) 1 Enoch today do so not with the intention of promoting a deeper faith in God's inspired Word, but more with the intent of undermining the Bible's authority - and especially the church's. 1 Enoch's clear historical integrity but "lack of inclusion in the Bible" is often used to "springboard" arguments for other "favorite" heretical books, left out for all the right reasons. Modern Gnostics are often fond of several other "gospels" (such as Thomas and Mary, both of which have statements and theologies that clearly contradict the more reliable works by John, Matthew, et al, proving they were NOT inspired by God). In short (oops - too late for that!), the typical Gnostic and New Age arguments have nothing to do with why The Book of Enoch was not included in the Bible, or not preserved with other ancient works. (The true "reasons why" are actually more sinister...)
The forming church also had to publicly refute and stand against (from within!) the heresy of modalism, which in part suggests that Jesus Christ is a created being - eternal nonetheless, but inferior in substance to God the Father. The Council of Nicea was expressly interested in making sure that the doctrine of the Triune Godhead was clearly expressed by the canon, and especially that it would not be misunderstood by those who would read the Scriptures. Another "motive" was to refute "Pneumatomachians - who accepted the deity of Christ but said the Holy Spirit was an impersonal force... And so it was, and we are indebted today to a 4th century Luther that stood up to define the nature of Christ and God against a flood of falsehood(8)."
To be honest, in reading Enoch there seems to be in the multitude of heavenly trips a physical distinction sometimes made between The Father and the Pre-Incarnate Son. The phrases "Lord of Spirits" , "Ancient of Days," and "Son of Man" are used so often (perhaps interchangeably, perhaps not) that even a careful reading sometimes infers the (doctrinally acceptable - 1 Cor 15:24) separation of the eternal Godhead. On earth, "... all the fullness of the deity" was present in Jesus Christ, "the image of the invisible God." But 1 Enoch can at minimum cause confusion to the understanding of the Godhead - hard enough to grasp even today - in a way that other authors (Moses, Isaiah, Ezekiel, Paul and John) do not when speaking of their face-to-face encounters with God. (Did any gnostics still in the audience catch that phrase?) Even without the conflicting manuscripts or possible multiple authors coming into play (which careful examination of the rest of canon shows could have been worked out actually, if they so chose), I sincerely believe that if there was a legimate, excusable motive for not including Enoch in the Bible, this was it.
This does not excuse why we had to wait 1000 years to re-discover this book however.
So finally, with the general integrity of the Holy Scriptures, and the legitimate reasons the early Roman Catholic Church may have rejected 1 Enoch covered respectfully (and in a way palatable for modern Christian academics), let's critically examine the real reasons behind the indisputable censure of 1 Enoch. There are many texts that - while not included as canon - have nonetheless retained their "postion of honor" and even reverence among the (Western) historical Christian church. Among these are the Apocrypha (still included of course in modern Catholic Bibles - and, just FYI, even included in the original King James Bible), as well as The 12 Patriarchs, and writings too numerous to name by various "Church Fathers." All of these have remained in a relatively high-profile position throughout church history, more or less available for both scholars and laymen to draw from when studying the ancient origins of the Christian faith. Not so with Enoch.
Yes, ANY of the above are certainly "good enough" reasons to have disqualified Enoch from canonization. But only assuming you wanted to in the first place ...
With all of the evidence in, we have to own the fact that 1 Enoch was not merely "rejected for canonization." It was buried. Flat out suppressed. It was quite intentionally lost to history, with all copies destroyed or left to rot 10 stories deep under the Vatican. Enoch was not merely "left out of the Bible." It was dropped like a bad habit.
Okay, only for those who have come the distance, now let's talk dirt...
Point blank, Origen was right. Enoch was suppressed and labeled as heresy specifically to hide the truth of the fallen angels' past, present and future activity on earth.
Forget Roswell. Forget the X-Files. The most successful, enduring and damaging cover-up of "The Truth" about our planet's frequent visitors - has come from within The Church.