Hebrew Voices #17 – Enoch Walking with Angels (Rebroadcast)

In this episode of Hebrew Voices, Enoch Walking with Angels, Nehemia Gordon meets with Dr. Miryam Brand to discuss 1 Enoch, which is part of the Jewish "Pseudepigrapha" from the Second Temple period. Gordon and Brand discuss how Enoch’s marginal (albeit fascinating) mention in the Tanakh has resulted in a body of literature and lore about his life and its unusual “end.”

We learn how different time periods (particularly the Second Temple period) have grappled with the statement that “Enoch was not, for Elohim took him.” Regarding the translations of “Elohim” and “son of man,” Brand offers both rabbinical and academic interpretations: God, judges, or angels -- and mere mortal or messiah? We learn the Qumran connection to four of the five books that were combined to form 1 Enoch and the possible implications for the one book not found there. In closing, Brand and Gordon discuss the veracity of the Enoch stories—and in what sense it matters whether they are “true” or not.

I look forward to reading your comments!

Download Enoch Walking with Angels

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Related Posts:
The Origin of Sin
Nephilim and Demons in the Book of Enoch
The Lost Book of Jasher
The Book of Jasher Exposed
Hebrew Voices Episodes
Support Team Studies
Nehemia Gordon's Teachings on the Name of God

Show Notes:

Dr. Miryam Brand holds a Ph.D. in Bible and Second Temple Literature from New York University and an M.A. in Bible and Biblical Interpretation from Matan and Haifa University. Her book on the portrayal of sin in the Second Temple period (Evil Within and Without: The Source of Sin and Its Nature as Portrayed in Second Temple Literature) was published in 2013 and her commentary on the Book of Enoch was published as part of Outside the Bible in 2013. She has taught at Brown University, New York University, and Stern College and has spoken at Hebrew University, Cambridge University, and the University of Kiel. She is currently an Associate Fellow at the Albright Institute of Archaeological Research.

Dr. Brand's Website

Outside the Bible: Ancient Jewish Writings Related to Scripture

1 Enoch (online)

"Some events do take place but are not true; other are--although they never occurred." Elie Wiesel, Legends of Our Time, page viii

"In literature... certain things are true though they didn't happen, while others are not, even if they did." Quoted in: Frederick L. Downing, Elie Wiesel: A Religious Biography, page 121

[45] And when the forty days were ended, the Most High spoke to me, saying, "Make public the twenty-four books that you wrote first and let the worthy and the unworthy read them; [46] but keep the seventy that were written last, in order to give them to the wise among your people. [47] For in them is the spring of understanding, the fountain of wisdom, and the river of knowledge." (4 Ezra 14:45-47)

Josephus, Against Apion 1.38-42 [1:8]

Verses Mentioned:

  • Laura Lee says:

    When people say God was just an idea to base good stories on, I wonder why they bother with the stories. When their entire lives are centered around that kind of explanation of all things, I feel awful for them, but really, let’s get to reality at some point. would really like to get a look at the Aramaic fragments, if they show online anywhere? Thanks, no offense intended.

  • Birhanu Alemayehu says:

    The book of Enoch origin is here in Ethiopia. By the way the Ethiopian Orthodox church have her own bible which is already included book of Enoch. But the others christian fellows they didn’t accept or not included in their bible book of Enoch. I don’t know why they not included.If any who know about this reason please, can mention an idea.

    • Rion Clark says:

      The book of Enoch has Jubilee date errors with history in Gen. Other types of errors if you believe Gen.(Brashyt) is correct. There are other bits of information that is not in the bible. That appear to be truth. Just need to be careful. This is my opinion I do not trust any religion of myself. Until proven by the tanach. Even then I will listen to others knowing men error also there is always more to learn.

  • Mario Greco says:

    I really enjoyed this podcast about the true source of the book of Enoch.

    So what about the book of Jasher.
    We see two scriptures in the Bible stating the book of Jasher:

    [Jos 10:13 NKJV] So the sun stood still, And the moon stopped, Till the people had revenge Upon their enemies. [Is] this not written in the Book of Jasher? So the sun stood still in the midst of heaven, and did not hasten to go [down] for about a whole day.

    [2Sa 1:18 NKJV] and he told [them] to teach the children of Judah [the Song of] the Bow; indeed [it is] written in the Book of Jasher:

    Is there truly a book of Jasher where there is only some verses or chapters that are authentic and the rest has been tampered just like the book of Enoch?

    I have not read the book of Jasher yet, however, I was told that there was a story in the book of Jasher of Abraham speaking with Ishmael about his tent peg meaning his wife. I guess that’s the way someone try to explain to me.

    What is the book of Jasher?

  • I’ve learned Elohim are Heaven’s armies (the “Hosts”) where Yehovah is kind of Captain or Admiral (“Yehovah Tzevaot”) and His angels are His troopers and servants. Sounds like Star Wars! 😉 The “original one” ha ha! This topic reminds me of another Hebrew Voices regarding the UFO Jews in Israel. In some way I admire Raelian Jews because they are open minded and know how to use solemn thinking / imagination and they don’t try to put God in a box. They may have some New Age / UFO thinking in their theology and I don’t agree on everything with them. But they are correct about Yehovah being one of the Elohim together with the angels. This is clear concept in the Scriptures. Except Yehovah is not 25,000 years old being from another galaxy or some sort but eternal Creator. God the Father who summoned the Light in the beginning.

    Shabbat Shalom in the Father of Lights!

  • Karen says:

    I watched a video that said El means God and Elohem means God’s plural is this true?

    • El and Elohim are unrelated words. The singular of Elohim is Eloah. The plural of El is Elim. All four words appear in the Tanakh:
      El (mighty one/ god) > Elim (mighty ones/ gods)
      Eloah (judge/ god) > Elohim (judges/ gods/ Great God)

  • Andreas Büchler says:

    The Christian Bible counts 70 books, if one counts the book of psalms as 5. But in most versions, there is no separation between the psalms, and so it counts 66. You should know, if the psalms count as 1, or as 5 books. Thanks for this great article, and Shabbath Shalom.

  • Ludek Brown says:

    Thank you Nehemia for covering this topic! I loved this podcast! It goes along with my current interest in the Apocrypha and Pseudocrypha books. I’d love to hear a podcast on the topic of: How did Judaism choose Tanach’s 24 books? Were they chosen by GOD’s prophet or were they chosen by Jewish “wise” men?

    Also I’d love to hear a podcast covering other books. Especially: Book of Jubilees, Book of Jasher, Book of Adam and Eve 1 & 2, Book of Sirach, and Testaments of the Patriarchs!! BTW, here is a helpful link to MP3s if anyone wants to listen to the audiobooks: http://www.scriptural-truth.com/mp3free.html

    Ludek from Czech Republic

  • LaVcaM says:

    These false books are actually called “Hypotheses” Just as most Biblical teachers/scholars would use parables. Yeshua also used parables when speaking to the multitudes and those who had the inclination to comprehend and glean truth were enlightened.
    Due 4:29 “But from there you will seek the LORD your God, and you will find Him if you seek Him with all your heart and with all your soul.

    Also, I believe the term ‘walked with G-D’ refers to seeking Him with our whole being and obeying His Laws/Statutes with gladness (i.e. pure in spirit).
    Gen 5:24 And Enoch walked with God; and he was not, for God took him.
    Gen 6:9 This is the genealogy of Noah. Noah was a just man, perfect in his generations. Noah walked with God.

    Enoch was Noah’s gg-Grandfather.
    If you follow the time-line from Gen 5:21 – 7:6, you will see that Enoch walked the earth at the beginning of Noah’s life. Maybe YHWH ‘took’ Enoch to save him out of the violence and sin that ran rampart during the time that ‘men’s hearts were evil continually’, We have a loving and merciful G-D that only wants the best for us. Even tho Methuselah and Lamech were also on the earth, they were not mentioned as ‘walking with G-D’ doesn’t mean they weren’t worthy, they may not have been as pure in spirit as Enoch. I have to do more research about their years.

    Correct me if I’m wrong but this is what I have learned from reading this story. Am I on the right track? I pray that G-D will give me understanding and wisdom every time I read anything having to do with our faith.

    Thank you Nehemia and Dr Brand for your wisdom and teaching on this subject. May YHWH continue to bless your ministries.

    • clarkrion says:

      The points you brought up seem to me to be answered Brashyt chapter 1. First the Nephilim. 1:23 The 5th “DAY” ended year 5001 after Gen.1:1. Yes I am using 1000 years per “DAY” used in chapter 1. Why 1st No coal was ever found in earth that did not contain H14 which has about a 3700 year half-life. So all plants used to form all the coal reserves on earth are under 50,000 years old. Though others use different time frames, from 24 hours to billions of years. In this matter it is just a time frame so it doesn’t matter if it is exact.
      Next Chewah (Eve) was formed from the side of Adam, after he was “took” to the Garden. This move occurred after Adam was formed, garden planted, trees grew producing good fruit.
      Then he named the animals & found no helper suited to him. Then Adam received the breath of life. So we need to continue a time line for perspective whether the time is perfect would still not matter.
      I believe Adam to be 17 when the Garden was planted. 5 years later Adam was moved to the garden so the fruit trees were complete (tav). Adam was 22 when he moved and was given the breath of life (Abba’s Spirit). Then Eve was formed.
      Using Adam’s seed not Elohim seed. Adam would have known what death was. Or the statement in that “DAY” you will die would not exist. Going back in time.
      Note: Gen.1:26 Let “US” (plural) make man in “OUR” (plural) image, according to “OUR” (plural) likeness and let “THEM” (plural) rule over all the earth. Next Gen.1:27. He (singular) Elohim (plural) formed him male & female (plural). He formed them (plural).
      Gen.1:28-30 Then Elohim barak them (plural) told what food was for eating their positions “hero’s, judges, renowned & hosts of the earth. Including being over all other life on earth.
      Then after all this Gen.1:31 The 6th DAY ends year 6001. Note: All was very good (tav complete self sufficient).
      So the Nephilim were men & women without a bellybutton. As it is written.

      • LaVcaM says:

        2Pe 3:8 “But, beloved, do not forget this one thing, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.”
        [This passage implies that time is irrelevant to G-D.]

        Gen 1:2 The earth was without form, and void; and darkness was on the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.
        [Abba is Aleph and Tav. His Spirit was/is/forever shall be.]

        [To follow ‘a 1000yrs is as a Day’ timeline is folly and limits G-D, putting Him in a box.
        When He said “Let there be…”, it happened as He spoke.
        He did not ‘Rest on the Sabbath’ 1000yrs. That would imply that from the beginning, He was not ‘walking’ in the Garden with Adam & Eve (Gen 3:8a), or ‘walking’ with Enoch (Gen 5:24) or Noah (Gen 6:9).]

        Gen 18:1 Then the LORD appeared to him by the terebinth trees of Mamre, as he was sitting in the tent door in the heat of the day.
        [G-D also APPEARED to Abraham, meaning Abraham ‘WALKED’ with G-D.]

        In my spirit, I cannot put G-D in a box, for to do so would eliminate HIS power and diety. So forgive me if I do not agree with your timeline of 1000yr Day. It is incomprehensible to me.


  • mike melum says:

    This encouraged me to look into the book that was off limits.

  • D says:

    Dr. Brand states that during the second temple period, the understanding of Genesis 5:22, 24 seemed to be that Enoch walked with angels. This is an interesting thought. I think the Infancy Gospels allude to Mary, the mother of Yehoshua, regularly conversing with angels as a young child and also to Elisabeth, Yochanan’s mother, being ministered to by angels during the time that she fled to preserve Yochanan’s life. That said, my NASB text notes on these verses state, “The original Hebrew adds the definite article before ‘God’ in both instances (vv. 22,24).” If the definite article is present, wouldn’t Enoch walking with GOD be the more correct understanding?

  • Quite interesting that I just learned from another Jewish source that Ethiopian Jews still have Enoch in their Tanach. Enoch is classified being part of the “revelation literature” in the Scriptures such as Nevim (the Prophets) and Sefer Kizayon (the Book of Revelation).

    • clarkrion says:

      Thanks for your knowledge told.

    • clarkrion says:

      I have question. When you both were speaking about Hanok being “took” and what this meant. In Brashyt 2:15 Adam was “took” to the garden. He was alive. Are the spellings the same in the pictographic as Brashyt 5:24 for “took”? I have problems with the square script. The meaning seems to be lost in translation of square script compared to pictographic seeds (letters). A picture is a thousand words. Though this would seem to increase the difficulty the seed (letter) only grows one type of plant.
      Shalom Rion

      • Hi Clark, I think you are confusing Hebrew with Chinese. In Hebrew, the letters were originally objects that represented sounds, not ideas. For example, the paleo-Hebrew Bet is a “house” and therefore represents the B sound. However, words containing the letter Bet may have nothing to do with a “house”. Also letters (ot) have nothing to do with seed (zera).

        • Sharon Hedy says:

          I don’t see why anyone should be surprised that Enoch walked with Elohim (physically or in spirit and truth).
          Abraham made meals and eat with Elohim many generations after.
          I have to admit that the phrase “and he was not” about Enoch has tickled my thoughts though and would be glad for an explanation as to the meaning ……

        • clarkrion says:

          Thank you so much for answering my question. I am trying to teach myself Hebrew. It is still all Greek to me. However my question was is the word “took” spelled the same way in both scriptures in Gen. 5:24 & Gen. 2:15? Could you also tell what letters were used in Hebrew? Thanks As A thoughtful suggestion
          could you change your donation so I can donate and pay my membership at the same time & same place? Thank you again I didn’t know the Chinese language of pictographs represented Ideas. Perhaps that is where Hanok was “took”? LOL

        • clarkrion says:

          I agree that B is not only a house.
          B is both male & female.
          Male is the control of the door.
          Female in control of the living area.
          B is also the #2.
          B is the foundation.
          B is the summit.
          B means in.
          The first 70 languages were pictures?
          A picture is worth a 1000 words?
          Did not the house of host start Gen?
          (ox) ayin tav nothing to do with seed?
          Does tav & covenant have connection?
          Does tav & mark have a connection?
          The book of Ruth has 12 aleph tav?
          Only after redeemed does Ruth (at)?
          The forth word is not defined in English aleph tav. thank you always
          learn something from you are the best.

  • Wanda says:

    Once again excellent discussion Nehemia and Dr Brand. And thank you for the links Nehemia:) they too are very good…

    Shabbat Shalom

  • William Blank says:

    Anyone familiar with the scriptures will perceive that the book of Enoch is not inspired. Just because Peter and Jude quote one or two sentences from it doesn’t constitute an endorsement of it. Paul quoted Greek works. Enoch contradicts a number of scriptures and has a ludicrous perception of reality. For example, it says that the angels built Noah’s ark(67:2) and the sun and moon are the same size(72:37 and 78:3). It says the year only has 364 days(82:6) and that one month has 28 days(78:9) which didn’t come into being until the Julian calendar. The book is obviously a fraud. Also, it is full of astrology. Finally, anyone who believes the 106th chapter is seriously deficient in the ability of discriminating the truth since it is more ridiculous than some of the passages in the epic of Gilgamesh.

    • Simone Piletto says:

      The whole truth belongs to the lord and its concepts are there for those who seek the truth,now how your intelligence perceives it is another matter,but regardless of what is or isn’t inspired,enochs story in general is relevant to the genesis/noah narrative,so while these particular details are mysterious,they’re still valid in the bigger picture when viewed in the context of which the story is told.

  • The book of Enoch is fascinating because it gives revelation of end time events in heavens and on the earth. It sounds similar to the book of Revlations in the New Testiment. I have read through the book of Enoch a few times but I’ve always been told the texts has been changed and misinterpreted. So I wasn’t sure what to think regarding the validity. However, I always felt there might be some hidden mysteries or gold nuggets.

    I enjoyed learning from both of your zeal and passion for Elohim’s word along with everyone contributing their special piece of the puzzle. It is amazing to learn about individuals who have pursued ancient manuscripts of the books of Enoch through travels, and new discoveries found in Ethiopia. Really looking forward to the iPod series.

    Thank you very much Nehemia and Dr. Brand. Wow! You both have a very impressive list of credentials! I am hoping some of your wisdom and knowledge might rub off;)


  • Vicki says:

    All I can say is your messages and Hebrew Voices are timely . Reading through the Tanakh I hit Enoch . Never heard of book of Enoch except in a JPS footnote . Did a quick Wikipedia search . I use that source as a jumping off point , a quick overview . Looked at Jude and saw the reference . I just put that train of information aside and thought ,” Well that is for later ,” and keep reading Tanakh.
    Then a week later here you are . Thank you both Nehemia and Dr . Brand .