Why are Christian people advised to stay away from The Book of Enoch? It’s because Enoch contradicts with Bible and Christianity or Christian salvation. The Book of Enoch is a pseudo apocryphal Jewish text from the third century B.C. However, the text is not uniform and was written various times by different contributors.
The older sections of the text, mainly in the Book of the Watchers, are estimated to date from about 300 to 200 B.C. So, Enoch is apocryphal, but remember that apocryphal doesn’t always mean evil or false. It involves a category of religious texts that may be thought of as instructive or insightful for religious wisdom yet are not considered inspired or authentic.
Why stay away from The Book of Enoch?
The Book of Enoch is quoted in the Book of Job, the Book of Jude, along with another apocryphal work, the assumption of Moses. It’s apocryphal, meaning God does not inspire it. That doesn’t mean there’s no truth in it. Of course, there are truths in it.
It’s a highly respected book read by many of the church fathers. So you have some interesting tidbits of information that will be true. It’s an excellent book to help give you a historical context for the coming of Christ and the New Testament. But why the book of Enoch was removed from the Bible? Let’s know the reasons!
1. The Book of Enoch was not among the Hebrew scriptures or LXX
The Book of Enoch was not included in the LXX or Hebrew scriptures, Septuagint, and the Greek version of the Old Testament used by Egyptian Jews. Additionally, classical rabbinic literature is characterized by near silence concerning the Book of Enoch. Early Christians based their Old Testament canon on the list found in the Septuagint in a way taking it for granted. They were busier with arguing what would be canonical in the New Testament.
So the simplest explanation why Enoch was not included in their canon is that it was not in the Septuagint. Also noteworthy is that the Septuagint bears more similarity to the Dead Sea Scrolls and texts at Qumran than it does to them as heretic text. Interestingly, the Qumran community is a benchmark of religious and ideological development that would lead to other apocalyptic cults such as that of John the Baptist and Jesus.
2. The Book of Enoch draws heavily from Zoroastrianism and the Sibylline Oracles
The text shows it has adopted the Persian-influenced idea of Satan Angra Minu, which is post 500 B.C. Enoch says there are multiple Satans. See Enoch 65. One of the most prominent and obvious things about Enoch is its emphasis on archangels.
This concept traces to Zoroastrianism and is mentioned no earlier than the time of Daniel. It’s also obvious that Enoch, particularly the Book of Parables, was heavily influenced by the sibling Oracles, a collection of poetic revelations written by Greek prophets, which are no older than the second century B.C.
3. Enoch is a forgery and pseudepigraphal
The text of Enoch claims to be from the perspective of and written by Enoch’s seventh generation of Adam. It is doubtful since the book is filled with many anachronisms that would be inappropriate for the time of or before Noah. So don’t forget that the Book of Enoch claims to have been written by none other than Enoch, the antediluvian son of Jared.
In terms of texts being more or less obvious about their lack of authenticity, Enoch lands on the side of being more obvious about their inauthentic nature. However, many of the New Testament writings are themselves forgeries. It was more difficult in late antiquity for people to prove such a thing, especially compared to today’s advanced methods. It makes identifying pseudo epigraphs and forgeries much easier and more accurate.
This irony was lost on the church leaders and early church fathers. But they almost unanimously agreed that the Book of Enoch was apocryphal. It was undeniable about its problematic nature, conspicuously pseudo-apocryphal. In retrospect, it doesn’t require modern methods to see this. The text is aware of the Deuteronomy source and the books of the Kings, which date earliest to the sixth century B.C. The priestly source is also referenced as Azazel as punishment copies (Leviticus 16). Therefore, the Book of Enoch writer is aware of, and post dates the Torah.
4. Church Fathers had a different explanation
In the early church, there was a trendy way to explain. The Great Flood, which differed greatly from the Book of Enoch, was simpler and used the Bible on its terms. As recounted by Augustine and Jerome, the tradition agreed with the rabbinic position of rejecting the angelic interpretations of Genesis six through six. Here is the gist of the interpretation.
Instead, the Sons of God were interpreted as being holy. Men who were descendants of Seth and Nephilim are interpreted to mean great men, not literally giants. They were descendants of the righteous seed of Adam and of the godly culture that Adam gave rise to, which Seth continued. Whereas the daughters of men are the descendants of Cain, the culture described in Genesis five and the sin in question is the intermarriage between the Godly Seth Knights and the ungodly K Knights. K Knights, the people of Cain not to be confused with Canaanites, the people of Canaan, the sons of God, in this case, are tempted and attracted by the women of the K Night Civilization.
The Seth Knights intermarry with the K Knights and thereby fall into the sin and idolatry customary to the canine culture. The only pious and obedient society of men has been corrupted. God then decides to wipe out humanity and start over. For more information on this, see the City of God, Chapter 23 by Saint Augustine.
5. Book of Enoch gives archangels the role of Jesus
Another issue with the Book of Enoch is that it claims that archangels make humanity righteous, cleansed, sin, and give eternal life rather than Jesus. Enoch chapter 10:20-21 states,
And cleanse thou the Earth from all oppression and all unrighteousness, and from all sin, and from all godlessness: and all the uncleanness that is wrought upon the earth 21 destroy from off the Earth. And all the children of men shall become righteous, and all nations 22 shall offer adoration and shall praise Me, and all shall worship Me. And the Earth shall be cleansed from all defilement, and from all sin, and from all punishment, and from all torment, and I will never again send (them) upon it from generation to generation and forever.Enoch 10:20-21
Enoch chapter 40: 9-10 states,
This first is Michael, the merciful and long-suffering: and the second, who is set over all the diseases and all the wounds of the children of men is Raphael: and the third, who is set over all the powers, is Gabriel: and the fourth, who is set over the repentance unto hope of those who inherit eternal life, is named Phanuel.’ 10 And these are the four angels of the Lord of Spirits and the four voices I heard in those days.Enoch 40:9-10
According to Christianity, Jesus does all of this as the mediator for man, not the archangels.
6. Enoch contradicts Christian salvation
The Book of Enoch also claims that God requires the blood of many righteous people, despite Christians believing the blood of Jesus was enough. Enoch, 47:4 states,
And the hearts of the holy were filled with joy. Because the number of the righteous had been offered, And the prayer of the righteous had been heard, And the blood of the righteous been required before the Lord of Spirits.Enoch 47:4
However, in Christianity, the only blood required is that of Jesus. No other righteousness has the sanctity, and the efficacy of salvation, nor the power to sacramental regenerate the spirit. Most importantly, Enoch’s views on salvation kept it out of the canon. According to Enoch, Salvation comes from reading the book and paying attention to Heavenly Secrets and no others.
Enoch presents a God so distant and aloof that he requires his angels to inform him of events on Earth, as this sort of narrative might be expected. The book says very little about the central theme of Christian scriptures, how the loving and perfect God can heal sinful humans, view them with graces, and regenerate their souls as righteousness overall. Enoch lacks the touches of Judaism mixed with Platonism that Christianity exhibits, something that wouldn’t occur until the innovations of Philo, upon whose work Christianity relies.
7. Enoch various other Christian beliefs
The Book of Enoch also repeatedly ascribes the transmission of sin from Azazel, whereas the New Testament ascribes sin as having passed from Adam.
Enoch Chapter 10:8 states,
And the whole earth has been corrupted 9 through the works that were taught by Azazel: to him ascribe all sin.Enoch 10:8
Strikingly Enoch 70 and 71 claim that Enoch ascended into heaven and that Enoch is the son of man. Also, Enoch 45 and 51 claim that he sits on God’s throne.
The Book of Enoch most definitely bears the mark of being influenced by the religious zeitgeist in Second Temple Judaism, and it grew to become an influencer of that zeitgeist. Consequently, Enoch shares the same threads of evolution in religious ideology. Yet it exhibits enough disparity and incongruity with Christianity that it was not generally deemed scripturally canonical. It’s too immature and finds itself at the older stage in ideological development.
See where the New Testament differs from Enochian literature. The following New Testament verses can be used to demonstrate how the text contradicts Christian beliefs.
- John Chapter 1:29.
- John Chapter 3:13.
- John Chapter 14:6.
- Hebrews Chapter 10: 10-22.
- Romans Chapter 5:12-14.
- John Chapter 2:1-2.
- Romans Chapter 5:21.
Learn more: 10 Facts About The Book Of Enoch