Enoch, Hebrews and How Messiah Defeated Satan
James Scott Trimm
The Book of Enoch recounts how a group of fallen angels took the form of human flesh, and copulated with human women. This account plays an important part in understanding the work of Messiah and His redemption of mankind. In the Book of Hebrews we read:
5 For unto the angels has he not put in subjection the world to come, whereof we speak.
6 But one in a certain place testified, saying, What is man, that you are mindful of him? or the son of man, that you visitest him?
7 You made him a little lower than the angels; you crowned him with glory and honour, and did set him over the works of your hands: (Psalm 8:5-7 (4-6))
8 You have put all things in subjection under his feet. For in that he put all in subjection under him, he left nothing that is not put under him. But now we see not yet all things put under him.
9 But we see Yeshua, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of Elohim should taste death for every man.
10 For it became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings.
11 For both he that sanctifies and they who are sanctified are all of one: for which cause he is not ashamed to call them brothers,
12 Saying, I will declare your name unto my brothers, in the midst of the assembly will I sing praise unto you.
13 And again, I will put my trust in him. And again, Behold I and the children which Elohim has given me.
14 Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil;
15 And deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage.
16 For verily he took not on him the nature of angels; but he took on him the seed of Abraham.
17 Wherefore in all things it behoved him to be made like unto his brothers, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to Elohim, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people.
18 For in that he himself has suffered being tempted, he is able to save them that are tempted.
Why does Hebrews use the odd language "one in a certain place testified"? Who is the speaker of the phrase?
To understand this process we must understand the real meaning of these verses of Psalm 8 and how they connect with the fall of angels in the Book of Enoch. psalm 8 reads:
5 (8:4) What is man, that You are mindful of him: and the son of man, that You think of
6 (8:5) Yet You have made him but little lower than the elohim, and have crowned
him with glory and honor.
7 (8:6) You have made him to have dominion over the works of Your hands; You have
put all things under His feet:
(Psalm 8:5-7 (4-6))
It is worthy of note that where the Hebrew of the Masoretic Text has “little lower than elohim” in verse 6, both the Aramaic Peshitta and Greek versions have “little lower than angels” in this verse, and it is interpreted to mean “angels” in Hebrews 2:6-9.
According to the Talmud, Midrash Rabba and Zohar, the phrase “What is man, that You are mindful of him” (Ps. 8:5) was actually spoken by a group of angels who were challenging Elohim:
Rab Judah said in Rab's name: When the Holy One, blessed be He, wished to create man, He [first] created a company of ministering angels and said to them: Is it your desire that we make a man in our image? They answered: Sovereign of the Universe, what will be his deeds? Such and such will be his deeds, He replied. Thereupon they exclaimed: Sovereign of the Universe, What is man that thou art mindful of him, and the son of man that thou thinkest of him? (Ps. 8:5) Thereupon He stretched out His little finger among them and consumed them with fire. The same thing happened with a second company. The third company said to Him: Sovereign of the Universe, what did it avail the former [angels] that they spoke to Thee [as they did]? the whole world is Thine, and whatsoever that Thou wishest to do therein, do it. When He came to the men of the Age of the flood and of the division [of tongues] whose deeds were corrupt, they said to Him: Lord of the Universe, did not the first [company of angels] speak aright? Even to old age I am the same, and even to hoar hairs will I carry,(Is. 46:4) He retorted.
Why is it stated ’for your pride’? It alludes to the idols on which they pride themselves, saying, Where are their gods, the rock in whom they trusted (Deut. 32:37). Another interpretation of ’for your pride’: on account of the Ministering Angels who are proud of themselves and say, ’What is man, that Thou art mindful of him, etc.? ' (Ps. 8:5)
(Lam. Rabbah Prologue XXV)
What, then, was Adam's wisdom? You find that when the Holy One, blessed be He, wished to create Adam, He took counsel with the ministering angels and said to them, ‘Let us make man’ (Gen. 1:26). They spoke before Him, ‘Lord of the universe, what is man, that Thou art mindful of him? (Ps. 8:5).’ He replied to them, ‘The man whom I desire to create will have wisdom exceeding yours.’
(Eccl. Rabbah VII:33)
The Zohar gives even more detail:
“Of the Nefilim it is said: “and the sons of God saw the daughters of men that they were fair” (Gen. 6:1f). These form a second category of the Nefilim, already mentioned above, in this way: When God thought of making man, He said: “Let us make man in our image, etc.” i.e. He intended to make him head over the celestial beings, who were to be his deputies, like Joseph over the governors of Egypt (Gen. 41:41). The angels thereupon began to malign him and say, “What is man that You should remember him (Ps. 8:5(4)), seeing that he will assuredly sin before You.” Said God to them, “If you were on earth like him, you would sin worse.” And so it was. For “when the sons of God saw the daughters of man”, they fell in love with them, and God cast them down from heaven. These were Uzza and Azael; from them the “mixed multitude” derive their souls, and therefore they also are called nefilim, because they fell into fornication with fair women.”
...Uzza and Azael actually opposed it [the creation of man]. For when the Shekinah said to God “Let us make man”, they said, “What is man that thou shouldst know him? Why desirest thou to create man, who, as thou knowest, will sin before thee through his wife, who is the darkness to his light, light being male and darkness female?” The Shekinah answered them: “You yourselves shall commit the very crime of which you accuse him”; and so it is written, “and the sons of God saw the daughters of man that they were comely”, and they went astray after them and were degraded by the Shekinah from their holy estate.’ Said the colleagues: ‘Rabbi, after all, Uzza and Azael were not wrong, because man was really destined to sin through woman.’ He replied, ‘What the Shekinah said was this: “You have spoken worse of man than all the rest of the heavenly host. If you were more virtuous than man, you would have a right to accuse him. But whereas he will sin with one woman, you will sin with many women, as it is written, ‘and the sons of God saw the daughters of man’- not a daughter, but daughters; and further, if man sinned, he was ready to repent and to return to his Master and repair his wrong.” ‘
They therefore went to R. Simeon and laid the matter before him. In reply he cited to them the verse: “What is man that thou art mindful of him, and the son of man that thou visitest him?” (Ps. 8:5). ‘The exposition of this verse’, he said, ‘is that it was uttered by those in charge of the world at the time when God expressed His intention of creating man. He called together various companies of heavenly angels and stationed them before Him. He said to them: I desire to create man. They exclaimed, “Man abideth not in honour”, etc. (Ps. 44: 13). God thereupon put forth His finger and burnt them. He then set other groups before Him, and said: I desire to create man. They exclaimed, ”What is man that thou shouldst remember him?” What is the character of this man, they asked. He replied: Man will be in our image, and his wisdom will be superior to yours. When He had created man and he sinned and obtained a pardon, Uzza and Azael approached Him and said: We can plead justification against Thee, since the man whom Thou hast made has sinned against Thee. He said to them: Had you been with them you would have sinned equally, and He cast them down from their high estate in heaven.
Compare to Gen. 6:1-2 “And it came to pass, when men began to multiply on the face of the earth, and daughters were born unto them... they were fair.” (Gen. 6:1-2) In the Rabbinic literature Shemikhazah and Azazel are called "Uzza and Azael". According to the tradition found in the Zohar above, when YHWH was creating man, He intended him to be head over all celestial beings. Certain angels (being lead by Uzza and Azael) maligned YHWH saying "what is man that you should remember him" (Ps. 8:5(4)). saying that man would sin through his wife. YHWH responded by saying that if they were on earth like man they would sin worse than man, sinning thru many women, not just one. YHWH then cast them down to earth. (Zohar 1:23a, 25b; 2:207b-208a)
At this point we should point out that according to the Book of Enoch Gadreel/Azazel went as the Serpent
6 And the third was named Gadreel:
he it is who showed the children of men all the blows of death, and he led astray Eve, and showed [the weapons of death to the sons of men] the shield and the coat of mail, and the sword for battle, and all the weapons of death to the children of men.
7 And from his hand they have proceeded against those who dwell on the earth from that day and for evermore.
Gadreel appears to be a title for Asa’el/Azazel of whom he Book of Enoch says:
1 And Asa’el taught men to make swords of iron, and knives, and shields, and breastplates of brass, and made known to them the metals that are excavated from the earth and the art of working gold and concerning silver, and bracelets, and ornaments, and concerning antimony, and eye shadow, and all kinds of costly stones, and all colouring tinctures.
2 And there arose much godlessness, and being wicked, and they were led astray, and became corrupt in all their ways.
And here Enoch tells us that Azazel was one and the same with the Serpent in the garden of Eden. (The Hebrew may have been גדראל (Gederel) “mason of El” or “wall of El”)
Azazel had entered the garden and tempted Eve to as to prove his point that man should not be head over all celestial beings and would sin thru his wife.
YHWH responded by casting the rebel angels to the earth to be tested themselves. We read in the Torah:
1 And it came to pass, when men began to multiply on the face of the earth, and
daughters were born unto them,
2 That the sons of Elohim saw the daughters of men, that they were fair. And they took
them wives, whomsoever they chose.
3 And YHWH said: My Spirit shall not abide in man forever. For that he also is flesh;
therefore shall his days be a hundred and twenty years.
4 The N’filim were on the earth in those days and also after that, when the sons of
Elohim came in unto the daughters of men, and they bore children to them. The same
were the mighty men that were of old--the men of renown.
5 And YHWH saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every
imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil; continually.
6 And it repented YHWH that He had made man on the earth, and it grieved Him at His
7 And YHWH said: I will blot out man whom I have created from the face of the earth:
both man, and beast, and creeping thing, and fowl of the air, for it repents Me that I have
(Gen. 6:1-7 HRV)
Who were these “sons of Elohim”? The Book of Enoch tells us that these “sons of Elohim” were “angels” who had “left their first estate”
and especially those who walk according to the flesh in the lust of uncleanness and despise authority. They are presumptuous, self-willed; they are not afraid to speak evil of dignitaries,
(2Peter 2:2-10 HRV)
And the angels who did not keep their first estate, but left their own habitation, he has reserved in everlasting chains under darkness for the judgment of the great day;
as S’dom and ‘Amora and the cities around them in a similar manner to these, having given themselves over to sexual immorality and gone after strange flesh, are set forth as an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.
Likewise also these dreamers defile the flesh, reject authority, and speak evil of rulers.
(Jude 1:6-8 HRV)
1 And it came to pass when the children of men had multiplied that in those days were born unto them beautiful and comely daughters.
2 And the angels, the children of the heaven, saw and lusted after them, and said to one another: 'Come, let us choose us wives from among the children of men and beget us children.'
3 And Shemikhazah, who was their leader, said unto them: 'I fear you will not indeed agree to do this deed, and I alone shall have to pay the penalty of a great sin.'
4 And they all answered him and said: 'Let us all swear an oath, and all bind ourselves by imprecations not to abandon this plan but to do this thing.'
5 Then they all swore together and bound themselves by imprecations upon it.
6 And they were in all two hundred; who descended in the days of Yared on the summit of Mount Hermon, and they called it Mount Hermon, because they had sworn and bound themselves by imprecations upon it.
(1Enoch 6:1-6 – James Trimm Translation)
The Book of Enoch tells us that these fallen angels became subjects of “Satan”:
And Mikha’el, and Gavri’el, and Rafa’el, and P’nuel shall take hold of them on that great day, and cast them on that day into the burning furnace, that YHWH Tzva’ot may take vengeance on them for their unrighteousness in becoming subject to Satan and leading astray those who dwell on the earth.'
So Azzazel and his followers objected to Elohim's love for man, complaining that man would sin with woman. Azzazel then took the form of the Serpent and tempted Eve thus setting Adam up to sin through her. YHWH responded by casting HaSatan and His followers to Earth, to demonstrate that given flesh and blood, they would sin with women as well.
Hebrews tells us that Messiah defeated HaSatan/Azzazel and redeemed mankind, by Himself taking on flesh and blood himself and Himself overcoming the very temptations of the flesh which Azzazel and his fallen angel followers had failed to overcome.
This is why Hebrews continues (Hebrews 8-10) with Yom Kippur imagery. In the Yom Kippur ceremony the High Priest casts lots upon two goats, one which is appointed “for YHWH” and the other “for Az’azel”. As we read in the Torah:
7 And he shall take the two goats, and set them before YHWH at the door of the tent of meeting.
8 And Aharon shall cast lots upon the two goats: one lot for YHWH, and the other lot for az’azel.
9 And Aharon shall present the goat upon which the lot fell for YHWH, and offer him
for a sin-offering.
10 But the goat on which the lot fell for az’azel, shall be set alive before YHWH, to
make atonement over him, to send him away for az’azel into the wilderness.
(Lev. 16:7-10 HRV)
The first of these goats represents the first coming of Messiah and is a sin-offering (representing the death of the Messiah). Then the High Priest (representing the resurrected Messiah) enters the Holy of Holies (representing the Heavenly Holy of Holies) and sprinkles the blood even times on the alter (representing the opening of the seven seals). Then the High Priest returns from the Holy of Holies (representing the return of the Messiah) and then we read:
21 And Aharon shall lay both his hands upon the head of the live goat, and confess over him all the iniquities of the children of Yisra’el, and all their transgressions; even all their sins. And he shall put them upon the head of the goat, and shall send him away by the hand of an appointed man, into the wilderness.
22 And the goat shall bear upon him all their iniquities unto a land which is cut off: and he shall let go the goat in the wilderness.
(Lev. 16:21-22 HRV)
For more on Azzazal and Yom Kippur see my recent blog on this topic by clicking HERE
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