Enoch & the Nephilim
Part I

 

About the Book of Enoch


In the year 1773, after a period of almost total obscurity lasting 1500 years, the Scottish explorer, James Bruce, discovered in what is now Ethiopia, The Book of Enoch.


He writes:

"Amongst the articles I consigned to the library at Paris was a very beautiful and magnificent copy of the prophecies of Enoch, in large Quarto; another is amongst the books of scripture that I brought home, standing immediately before the book of Job, which is itís proper place in the Abyssinian Cannon: and a third copy I presented to the Bodleian Library at Oxford, by the hands of Dr. Douglass, the Bishop of Carlisle."

It rested there, forgotten, until 1821 when Laurence issued his first translation of which there were many additions, culminating in the revised edition of 1883, compiled from notes in his estate.

As a former professor of Hebrew at Oxford, Laurenceís familiarity with Kabbalah and the Zohar (as shown in the introductions of earlier editions) gave him unique qualifications that were especially useful in translating a work of this type.

At present there are three versions of Enoch (not to be confused with the tabloid clones "Keys of Enoch" or "Secrets of Enoch" which are presently circulating amongst New Age groups). The first being the Ethiopian found by James Bruce in Abyssinia in 1773, and culminating in the present translation of this volume. The second is called the Book of the Secrets of Enoch, or Slavonian Enoch. It was discovered in the Belgrade public library by Prof. Sokolov in 1886, and trans- lated by Morfill and Charles in 1896. The third is (of necessity) called Enoch III, or the Hebrew Enoch, translated by Hugo Odeberg in 1922. Each has some variations that will help understanding, and one can hardly escape the conclusion that this book may be far older than anyone suspects.

Further correlations can be found in: "Hypostasis of the Archons" translated by Roger Bullard, 1970, from one of the Nag Hammadi gnostic codexes. In it are striking parallels with Enoch. The creation of giants or failures is again met with in the Mandaean Codex Nazaraeus, or Ginza rabba, which can be found in "Gnosis: Itís Character and Testimony" by Roger Haardt, translated by J.F. Hendry, 1971. And of course, Blavatskyís "The Secret Doctrine" has been in print continuously since 1888.

Although the Book of Enoch was apparently at one time recognized as a valid piece of Hebrew (i.e. Judeo-Christian) belief systems and although it was directly quoted from in the new testament epistle of Jude, the Council of Nicene voted to exclude it from "canonized" scripture in 325 AD.

Lyman Abbott notes:

"Reverting to the second century of Christianity, we find Irenaeus and Clement of Alexandria citing the Book of Enoch without questioning itís sacred character. Thus, Irenaeus, assigning to the Book of Enoch an authenticity analogous to that of Mosaic literature, affirms that Enoch, although a man, filled the office of Godís messenger to the angels. Tertullian, who flourished at the close of the first and at the beginning of the second century, whilst admitting that the íScripture of Enochí is not received by some because it is not included in the Hebrew Canon, speaks of the author as íthe most ancient prophet, Enoch,í and of the book as the divinely inspired autograph of that immortal patriarch..."

After reading Enoch, I was left with the impression that it was either an extremely precise historical document (one vision of many cows succinctly traces the development of Israel and Judah through a few centuries) with fascinating astronomical data added to the mix which had to have been written after the fact, or, if written when it was said to have been, it was without a doubt the most profoundly accurate prophetic work extant. In either case, Enoch should not be taken lightly.

Some may find Thomasí work to be too flavored with fundamentalism for their particular taste but I personally found it to be some exceptionally well-researched stuff. I make no apologies for it and challenge you, the reader, to lay aside any predispositions and consider the work on itís own merits.

 

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