Post by charliedale on Jul 9, 2014 11:10:26 GMT -5
Hey, Pastor Mike!
In Jude 14-15, Jude quotes a document that is attributed to Enoch that is thought by many scholars to have not been written by him, but Jude 14 says, "Enoch, the seventh from Adam, prophesied, saying...."
Is Jude wrong?
Are those scholars who say Enoch didn't write this wrong?
Post by Mike Miller on Jul 16, 2014 10:34:45 GMT -5
To begin with, let me explain that Jude references both 1 Enoch and the Testament of Moses. Those two works are non-biblical writings from Jewish tradition that most Christians today would not be familiar with.
So, did Jude's use of those writings mean that he thought they were equivalent to the Bible? Not likely, but many times biblical writers referenced other works or concepts (i.e., John's use of logos) to make their points. They could have done so in order to explain or counter errant beliefs (such as with Paul in Acts 17), or they could have simply borrowed factual information to further enhance their teachings. The latter is what Jude seems to have done. While all of 1 Enoch and the Testament of Moses were not accurate, that does not mean they did not contain some truth (just like a fictional work today can be based on actual events or contain true material). In fact, much of Jude is considered to be midrash, which is a form of Jewish instruction that was prevalent in Jude's day. To put it simply, midrash is an expansion or commentary on biblical truths or themes. In other words, a teacher would incorporate knowledge from other areas/sources in order to expound upon a biblical text or idea for the purpose of giving the fullest sense of meaning. It is really a form of biblical exegesis common in rabbinical tradition. While those other writings were not in themselves Scripture, the book of Jude is, so the truths he used from those writings are canonical only as they are used by Jude.
So, what about Jude's identifying Enoch as "the seventh from Adam?" Well, 1 Enoch was attributed to this very Enoch (Adam—Seth—Enosh—Kenan—Mahalalel—Jared—Enoch, which is the Semitic way of counting generations, with Adam being the first). While the authorship of 1 Enoch is unknown, whether Enoch actually wrote it is not necessarily relevant to this discussion. Jude's identification of Enoch as the seventh from Adam is simply his stating where his reference is from. In other words, it is from the book attributed to that very Enoch. We do the same kind of thing when we say Moses wrote Deuteronomy. While I do hold to Mosaic origination of the pentateuch, most agree that Moses probably didn't write the account of his own death at the end of Deuteronomy. However, we still attribute Deuteronomy to Moses without making that distinction. It is one of the books of Moses. So, whether Enoch himself wrote 1 Enoch doesn't matter, because all Jude did was identify his source, which was the book attributed to Enoch, "the seventh from Adam."
Post by charliedale on Jul 22, 2014 10:06:02 GMT -5
The idea of something saying: "Enoch prophesied saying" and then quoting something that Enoch didn't say is a little hard for me. But I think you're saying that it was an acceptable way of referencing 1 Enoch. I'm sure Jude would not have said, "As the pseudographical work entitled 1 Enoch says..." That's putting my own culture into his. But as an inerrantist, it troubles me to read what seems to have been an error on the part of Jude. But if Jude and his audience all understood what he meant by that, I guess it would be understandable.
The other option seems to be that the quote was genuinely from Enoch that survived the thousands of years and then was included into 1 Enoch (even if much of the rest of 1 Enoch was not factual). Then Jude would be correct in saying, "Enoch prophesied saying...." That doesn't seem very likely though.