Religion & Spirituality:Christianity
Book of Enoch - RH Charles
Book of Enoch by RH Charles (Audio). The Book of Enoch written prior to 300 BC, it is an ancient Jewish religious work, ascribed by tradition to Enoch, the great-grandfather of Noah, although modern scholars estimate the older sections (mainly in the Book of the Watchers) to date from about 300 BC, and the latest part (Book of Parables) probably to the first century BC
Background on the Book of Enoch (wikipedia extract).
Judaism: Although evidently widely knownduring the development of the Hebrew Bible canon,1 Enoch was excluded from both the formal canon of the Tanakh andthe typical canon of the Septuagint and therefore, also from the writings knowntoday as the Deuterocanon.One possible reasonfor Jewish rejection of the book might be the textual nature of several earlysections of the book that make use of material from the Torah; for example,1 En 1 is a midrash of Deuteronomy 33.The content, particularly detailed descriptions of fallen angels,would also be a reason for rejection from the Hebrew canon at thisperiod – as illustrated by the comments of Trypho the Jew when debatingwith Justin Martyr on this subject. Trypho:"The utterances of God are holy, but your expositions are merecontrivances, as is plain from what has been explained by you; nay, evenblasphemies, for you assert that angels sinned and revolted from God."(Dialogue 79)
Christianity: By the 4th century, the Book of Enochwas mostly excluded from Christian canons, and it is now regarded as scripture byonly the Ethiopian Orthodox Church and the Eritrean Orthodox Church.
References in the New Testament: Enoch is referred to as a historicalperson and prophet, and quoted, in Jude 1:14–15:
And Enoch also, theseventh from Adam, prophesied of these, saying, Behold, the Lord cometh withten thousands of his saints, To execute judgment upon all, and to convict all thatare ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have ungodlycommitted, and of all their hard speeches which ungodly sinners have spokenagainst him.
Compare this with Enoch 1:9,translated from the Ethiopic (found also in Qumran scroll 4Q204=4QEnochc ar, col I16–18).
And behold! Hecometh with ten thousands of His Saints To execute judgment upon all, And todestroy all the ungodly: And to convict all flesh Of all the works of theirungodliness which they have ungodly committed, And of all the hard things whichungodly sinners have spoken against Him.
Compare this also with what may bethe original source of 1 En 1:9 in Deuteronomy 33:2:
The Lord came fromSinai and dawned from Seir upon us; he shone forth from Mount Paran; he camefrom the ten thousands of Saints, with flaming fire at his right hand.
Under the heading of canonicity, itis not enough to merely demonstrate that something is quoted. Instead, it isnecessary to demonstrate the nature of the quotation. In the case of theJude 14 quotation of 1 Enoch 1:9, it would be difficult to argue that Judedoes not quote Enoch as an historical prophet since he cites Enoch by name.However, there remains a question as to whether the author of Jude attributedthe quotation believing the source to be the historical Enoch before the floodor a midrash ofDeut 33:2–3. The Greek text might seem unusual in stating that "Enochthe Seventh from Adam" prophesied "to" (dative case)not "of" (genitive case) the men, however, this might indicate theGreek meaning “against them” - the dative τούτοις as a dativus incommodi(dative of disadvantage).
Peter H. Davids points to Dead SeaScrolls evidence but leaves it open as to whether Jude viewed 1 Enoch ascanon, deuterocanon, or otherwise: "Did Jude, then, consider thisscripture to be like Genesis or Isaiah? Certainly he did consider it authoritative,a true word from God. We cannot tell whether he ranked it alongside otherprophetic books such as Isaiah and Jeremiah. What we do know is, first, thatother Jewish groups, most notably those living in Qumran near the Dead Sea,also used and valued 1 Enoch, but we do not find it grouped with thescriptural scrolls."
The attribution "Enoch theSeventh from Adam" is apparently itself a section heading taken from1 Enoch (1 En 60:8, Jude 1:14a) and not from Genesis
Reception: The Book of Enoch was considered asscripture in the Epistle of Barnabas (16:4) and by many ofthe early Church Fathers, such as Athenagoras, Clement of Alexandria, Irenaeus and Tertullian, who wrotec. 200 that the Book of Enoch had been rejected by the Jews because itcontained prophecies pertaining to Christ. However,later Fathers denied the canonicity of the book, and some even considered theEpistle of Jude uncanonical because it refers to an "apocryphal"work.
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