Nazarene Space

Enoch as a Type of the Messiah
James Scott Trimm

Enoch’s translation to heaven is a type of the ascension of Messiah.

And Chanoch walked with Elohim and he was not,
for Elohim took him.
(Gen. 5:24)

This prefigured Messiah's ascension as recorded by Mark:

And Yeshua our Adon, after commanding His talmidim, went up to heaven and sat on
the right side of Eloah.
(Mk. 16:19)

Enoch’s ascension is a type of Messiah’s ascension, because Enoch is a type of the Messiah.

Enoch as a Type of the Son of Man

The Book of Enoch contains a great deal of material which gives us more detailed information about the prophecy of the Ancient of Days and the Son of Man.  

The parallels with Yeshua are very clear in Chapters 48 and 69 where he is called “His Messiah” (“His Anointed”)

1 And in that place I saw the fountain of righteousness
Which was inexhaustible:
And around it were many fountains of wisdom:
And all the thirsty drank of them,
And were filled with wisdom,
And their dwellings were with the righteous and set-apart and chosen.
2 And at that hour that Son of Man was named In the presence of YHWH Tzva’ot,
And his name before the Ancient of Days.  
3 Yea, before the sun and the signs were created,
Before the stars of the heaven were made,
His name was named before YHWH Tzva’ot.
4 He shall be a staff to the righteous whereon to stay themselves and not fall,
And he shall be the light of the Gentiles,  
And the hope of those who are troubled of heart.
5 All who dwell on earth shall fall down and worship before him,
And will praise and bless and celebrate with song YHWH Tzva’ot.
6 And for this reason has he been chosen and hidden  before Him,
Before the creation of the world and for evermore.  
7 And the wisdom  of YHWH Tzva’ot has revealed him to the set-apart and righteous;
For he has preserved the lot of the righteous,
Because they have hated and despised this world of unrighteousness,
And have hated all its works and ways in the name of YHWH Tzva’ot:
For in his name they are saved,  
And according to his good pleasure has it been in regard to their life.
8 In these days downcast in countenance shall the kings of the earth have become,
And the strong who possess the land because of the works of their hands,
For on the day of their anguish and affliction they shall not (be able to) save themselves.
9 And I will give them over into the hands of My chosen:
As straw in the fire so shall they burn before the face of the set-apart:
As lead in the water shall they sink before the face of the righteous,
And no trace of them shall any more be found.
10 And on the day of their affliction there shall be rest on the earth,
And before them they shall fall and not rise again:
And there shall be no one to take them with his hands and raise them:
For they have denied YHWH Tzva’ot and His Anointed.
The name of YHWH Tzva’ot be blessed.
(1Enoch 48)

26 And there was great joy among them,
And they blessed and glorified and extolled
Because the name of that Son of Man had been revealed unto them.
27 And he sat on the throne of his glory,
And the sum of judgment was given unto the Son of Man,
And he caused the sinners to pass away and be destroyed from off the face of the earth,
And those who have led the world astray.
28 With chains shall they be bound?
And in their assemblage-place of destruction shall they be imprisoned,
And all their works vanish from the face of the earth.
29 And from henceforth there shall be nothing corruptible;
For that Son of Man has appeared,
And has seated himself on the throne of his glory,
And all evil shall pass away before his face,
And the word of that Son of Man shall go forth
And be strong before YHWH Tzva’ot.
(1Enoch 69:26-29)

Then in Chapter 70 Enoch ascends (more on this symbolism later):

1 And it came to pass after this that his name during his lifetime was raised aloft to that Son of Man and to YHWH Tzva’ot from among those who dwell on the earth.
2 And he was raised aloft on the chariots of the spirit and his name vanished among them.  
3 And from that day I was no longer numbered among them: and he set me between the two winds, between the North and the West, where the angels took the cords to measure for me the place for the chosen and righteous.
4 And there I saw the first fathers and the righteous who from the beginning dwell in that place.

Throughout this portion of the Book of Enoch (the Book of Parables) Enoch himself is called a “son of man”:

And he answered and said unto me:
This is the son of Man who has righteousness,
With whom dwelled righteousness,
And who revealed all the treasures of that which is hidden,
Because YHWH Tzva’ot has chosen him,
And whose lot has the pre-eminence before YHWH Tzva’ot in uprightness for ever.
(1Enoch 46:3)

And he said to me: ' You son of man,
herein you do seek to know what is hidden.'
(1Enoch 60:10)

And he (i.e. the angel) came to me and greeted me with His voice, and said unto me’
This is the Son of Man who is born unto righteousness,
And righteousness abides over him,
And the righteousness of the Ancient of Days forsakes him not.'
(1Enoch 71:14)

1Enoch 46:3 and 71:14 have created some translation dispute. This portion of Enoch only survives to us in Ethiopic. In my own version above, I followed that of R. H. Charles who translates the Ethiopic phrase in question (walda be’si as) “This son of man” while Matthew Black and E. Isaac translate it as “You, son of man” in 71:14 they all translate “This son of man” in 46:3.

At any rate, the ambiguity points to a symbolism by which Enoch is a type of the Son of Man.

Enoch as a Type of Metatron

According to the Zohar, the Middle Pillar of the Three Pillars of the Godhead is also known as the “Son of Yah”:

Better is a neighbor that is near, than a brother far off.
This neighbor is the Middle Pillar in the godhead,
which is the Son of Yah.
(Zohar 2:115)

And the Middle Pillar is also known as “Metatron”:

The Middle Pillar [of the godhead] is Metatron,
Who has accomplished peace above,
According to the glorious state there.
(Zohar 3:227)

Yet there is also another tradition in some of the Pseudepigraphic literature (such as 3rd Enoch) and some later Rabbinic literature) that Metatron is actually the ascended Enoch.  This confusion occurs, not because Enoch is the “Son of Yah” or the Middle Pillar of the Godhead, but because Enoch is a type of the “Son of Yah” and “Middle Pillar.”

In 1st Enoch Chapter 14 Enoch comes before the figure on the throne and comes near to the “Holy Word”. The set-ting is that Enoch has been attempting to intercede for the fallen angels. Enoch passes through the worlds and comes before the throne and before the Word. Enoch is then given a message of judgment to take back to the fallen angels (1 Enoch 13-15).

The “Word” (Memra) is Metatron and it was this Word (Metatron) who gave Enoch a message to take back to the fallen angels.

In a much later Rabbinic document the Midrash of Shemichazah and Aza’el we read:

Forthwith Metatron sent a messenger to Shemichaza and said to him: “The Holy One is about to destroy His world and bring upon it a flood.
(Midrash of Shemichazah and Aza’el)

This parallels 1 Enoch 13-15 exactly, only Enoch has simply become “a messenger” for Metatron, his name (Enoch) has been dropped. (Shemichazah and Aza’el were the leaders of the Fallen angels [1 Enoch 6; 10]).

Enoch as Mediator

One way in which Enoch is a type of the Messiah is that he served as a mediator between heaven and earth. The angels send Enoch with a message for the fallen angels (1Enoch 12:4-6).  Then the fallen angels ask him to intercede on their behalf (1Enoch 13:4-7) and then Enoch is given a message of judgment for the fallen angels (1Enoch 13:8f)

This is symbolic of Messiah who is a mediator between Elohim and man:

For there is one Elohim, and one mediator between Elohim and men, the man Messiah Yeshua.
(1Tim. 2:5)

Enoch as a Symbol of Transformation

Philo of Alexandria interprets Enoch as an allegory symbolizing the way to for man to transform an earthly life to one of walking with YHWH.  He points out that Enoch’s name (חנך) may be interpreted “gracious” (more literally “Your grace”).  Philo writes:

(17) That which is placed in the next rank after hope is repentance for errors committed, and improvement; in reference to which principle Moses mentions next in order to Enos, the man who changed from a worse system of life to a better, who is called among the Hebrews Enoch, but as the Greeks would say, "gracious," of whom the following statement is made, "that Enoch pleased God, and was not found, because God transported Him." (Gen. 5:24.) (18) For transportation shows a change and alteration: and such a change is for the better, because it takes place through the providence of God; for every thing that is with God is in very case honourable and advantageous, since that which is destitute of any divine superintendence is useless and unprofitable. (19) And the expression, “he was not Found,” is very appropriately employed of him whose place was changed, either from the fact of his ancient blameable life being wiped out and effaced, and being no longer found, just as if it had never existed at all, or else because he whose place has been changed, and who is enrolled in a better class; is naturally difficult to be discovered. For wickedness is a very multiform and extensive thing, on which account it is known to many persons; but virtue is rare, so that it is not comprehended even by a few.
(Philo; On Abraham 17-19)

So Enoch points the way to the transformed life through the grace of YHWH.  As paul writes:

But if the Messiah [is] in you, the body is dead because of sin, but the spirit is alive
because of righteousness.
(Rom. 8:10)

And with the Messiah I was crucified, and therefore I do not live, but Messiah lives in
me. And this that now I live in the flesh, by the trust of the Son of Eloah I live: who
loved us and gave His nefesh for our sakes.
(Gal. 4:20)

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