Enoch’s Roles and Titles in Early Enochic Booklets

Andrei Orlov
Kelly Chair in Theology and Professor of Judaism and Christianity in Antiquity at Marquette University. View Entries

Enoch’s Roles and Titles in Early Enochic Booklets

Tracing the evolution of the traditions linked to the roles and titles of the seventh antediluvian hero leads us to investigate these notions in the Enochic traditions, where one encounters a set of conceptual developments similar to the Mesopotamian one examined in the first chapter. In the early Enochic lore, reflected in the composition that has survived entirely only in its Ethiopic translation and is known to scholars as 1 (Ethiopic) Enoch, the seventh antediluvian patriarch is depicted in several roles that reveal striking similarities to those of Enmeduranki. Just like his Mesopotamian counterpart, the patriarch is skilled in the art of divination, being able to receive and interpret mantic dreams. He is depicted as an elevated figure who is initiated into the heavenly secrets by celestial beings, including the angels and God himself. He then brings this celestial knowledge back to earth and, similar to the king Enmeduranki, shares it with the people and with his son.

This investigation of the patriarch’s roles and titles as they appear in the early Enochic writings does not aim to give an exhaustive treatment of these concepts but rather is intended to serve as a sketch that will briefly outline major developments pertaining to the offices and the appellations of the main hero of the Enochic writings. It is impossible within the limited scope of the investigation to trace all the evidence pertaining to the patriarch’s roles and titles in early Second Temple materials. A thorough treatment of this evidence would require at least a monograph for each Enochic role or title. The task of this investigation is more modest as it concentrates only on some of the evidence pertaining to the major offices and appellations.

In this section of the investigation of early Enochic traditions, I will deliberately avoid any in-depth treatment of Enoch’s roles and titles found in 2 (Slavonic) Enoch. Although some details pertaining to this apocalypse will be occasionally mentioned, a systematic treatment of the roles and titles of the patriarch in the Slavonic apocalypse will be offered in a separate section of the study.

Several words must be said about the exposition of the Enochic roles and titles. One of the difficulties of such a presentation is that some roles of the patriarch have a composite nature, often encompassing several functions that can be linked to his other roles. For example, Enoch’s role as a mediator is closely tied to his other roles as a scribe, an expert in secrets, a witness of the divine judgment, etc. Because of the composite nature of some Enochic roles, it is sometimes very difficult to delineate strictly their boundaries, as some of their functions can be interchangeable. The situation is even more complicated with the titles. The exact title used often depends on the perspectives of various subjects and parties in the texts represented by divine, angelic, and human agents who have different perceptions of the patriarch’s offices and activities and, as a consequence, name them differently. Some of Enoch’s titles also have a composite nature since one appellation can often include references to the patriarch’s several qualities or roles. The descriptions of such complexities pertaining to the roles and titles always involve repetitive explanations. Wherever possible I will try to avoid tautologies, but it should be recognized that repetitions are inevitable in view of the highly complicated nature of the phenomena under investigation.

Enoch as the Diviner

1 Enoch 1 introduces the seventh antediluvian patriarch in a role that appears to be quite different from his roles described in the Genesis story. 1 Enoch 1:1–3a reads:

The words of the blessing of Enoch according to which he blessed the chosen and righteous who must be present on the day of distress (which is appointed) for the removal of all the wicked and impious. And Enoch answered and said: (there was) a righteous man whose eyes were opened by the Lord, and he saw a holy vision in the heavens which the angels showed to me. And I heard everything from them, and I understood what I saw, but not for this generation, but for a distant generation which will come. Concerning the chosen I spoke, and uttered a parable concerning them.…1

Evaluating this account, James VanderKam observes that Enoch’s description here appears to reveal him in a new role as a mantic seer and a diviner, “a Jewish version of the Mesopotamian diviner-king Enmeduranki.”2 In entertaining this possibility VanderKam draws attention to the feature, previously noted also by other commentators, that 1 Enoch 1 uses some phrases borrowed from the Balaam stories in Num 22–24. In VanderKam’s opinion, in Num 22–24 Balaam “is unmistakably depicted as a diviner who hails from the northern Euphrates region,”3 and the narratives of these chapters of Numbers employ standard mantic terms.4 VanderKam further proposes that 1 Enoch 1:3a introduces Enoch as a diviner-seer in the mold of Balaam,5 since both of these figures (Balaam and Enoch) “belong in mantic contexts, both speak under divine inspiration in such circumstances, and both pronounce future blessings upon the people of God and curses on their enemies.”6

The important feature of Enoch in his office as a diviner, which denotes similarity to the practitioners of the  guild, is his connection to the practice of inducing and interpreting mantic dreams.7 Although the members of the  guild were mainly involved in such divinatory techniques as extispicy, lecanomancy, ornithomancy (reading messages from the gods in the blemishes and unusual colorations of bird’s skins)8 and libanomancy (reading omens from configurations of rising smoke), some scholars suggest that it is possible that a  practitioner “was expected to know at least some of the literature of oneiromancy, though this seems not to have been a field of divination with which he was very closely associated.”9 Haldar observes that in the  divinatory rituals mantic dreams were often interpreted through the omens associated with hepatoscopy and other divinatory techniques.10 Moreover, in his opinion, “the  priests did not only interpret dreams; they also received revelation in them.”11

VanderKam’s research shows that the practice of oneiromancy, widespread in Mesopotamian traditions, constituted the basis for the subsequent Enochic developments. He points to a significant detail often found in the Mesopotamian materials where the standard omen series for dreams was called after one of the gods of dreams, who normally was invoked in the first line of the text. This  was considered a son of Šamaš, the solar deity. Another Mesopotamian mythological character, the dream goddess Mamu, also was closely associated with Šamaš, regarded as his daughter.12 If one keeps in mind that Enmeduranki, the prototype of Enoch, was a servant of the god Šamaš, it appears to be significant, at least for understanding Enoch’s background in oneiromancy, that in the Mesopotamian traditions the dream divinities belonged to the family of Šamaš and this deity “himself retained direct control of dreams as a means of communication between gods and men.”13

One cannot fail to notice that 1 Enoch’s materials constantly refer to the oneiromantic activities of the patriarch. When Enoch describes one of his dream experiences in the Book of the Watchers (1 Enoch 13:7–9a), this description vividly recalls the model often attested in similar cases of oneiromantic practices. The text reads: “And I went and sat down by the waters of Dan in Dan which is south-west of Hermon; and I read out the record of their petition until I fell asleep. And behold a dream () came to me, and vision fell upon me, and I saw a vision of wrath….”14

David Suter observes that what one can say about Enoch in 1 Enoch 13 (and this applies to Daniel and Ezekiel also) is that the narrative has a seer or a prophet engage in the ritual for an incubation oracle by sleeping at a sacred spring. So one has a pseudepigraphic character (at least for Enoch and Daniel) depicted as engaging in an actual ritual.15

Suter’s reference to Daniel, another sage involved in oneiromantic rituals, is significant for understanding the nature and origins of Enoch’s mantic practices. As with Enoch’s situation which draws on the prototype(s) of Mesopotamian diviners, Daniel’s Sitz im Leben also seems to entail these connections. John Collins stresses that the court legends in Daniel 1–6 also have Mesopotamian settings. In these legends Daniel is trained as a Babylonian sage and even appears to be depicted as a member of a guild.16 Despite this affiliation, Daniel’s way of handling mantic dreams is different from known Mesopotamian counterparts, in which these rituals coincide with other divinatory techniques, such as auspicy or lecanomancy.17 In this relation Collins observes that Daniel, like Enoch,

too outdoes the Chaldeans at their own task of interpreting dreams and mysterious writings, but he does so by the power of the God of Israel. Daniel, like Enoch, endorses the dream as a medium of revelation but does not resort to the divinatory techniques of the . In each of these cases, the Jewish prophet or wise man is in competition with his Babylonian counterparts and accepts some of their presuppositions but also maintains a distinctive identity. The competitive aspect is not so explicit in the case of Enoch but is implied by the comparison with Enmeduranki.18

In conclusion to the analysis of the oneiromantic ritual from Chapter 13, it should be noted that in 1 Enoch 13:7–9 the terms “dream” and “vision” seem to be used interchangeably.19 VanderKam notes that “Enoch, whom tradition associated with mantic traits, here obtains knowledge about the future through one of the most popular of divinatory media.”20

Other parts of 1 Enoch also attest to the patriarch’s visions as mantic dreams. Thus, when in 1 Enoch 83 and 85, the seventh antediluvian patriarch describes his revelations, the text makes explicit that these visions are received in dreams.21 These passages also point to the fact that Enoch’s oneiromantic experiences occurred throughout his lifetime, possibly even from his early days, which the seer spent in the house of his grandfather Malalel.

It is not surprising that other Enochic traditions associated with the Book of Jubilees and the Book of Giants highlight dreams as important media for the patriarch’s revelations. Thus, Jub 4:19 alludes to a vision that Enoch received in sleep-dream in which he saw all the history of humankind until its eschatological consummation: “While he [Enoch] slept he saw in a vision what has happened and what will occur – how things will happen for mankind during their history until the day of judgment.”22

Another feature of Enoch’s oneiromantic activities is that the patriarch not only routinely received dreams himself, but as with the Mesopotamian practitioners, was involved in the ritual of interpreting the dreams for others. John Collins points to an important tradition attested in the Book of Giants which also seems to affirm this practice. In this text the rebellious group of the Watchers and Giants seeks the services of Enoch, “the scribe of distinction,” asking him to interpret a troubling dream received by a giant, a son of their leader. Collins observes that this “role of dream interpreter provides an interesting association of Enoch with Daniel, and may also be taken to reflect the actual practice of a class of sages in the ancient Near East.”23

Finally, the oneiromantic practices of Daniel resemble those routinely performed by Enoch in that both diviners record their dreams immediately upon receiving them. This custom appears to follow a typical Near Eastern oneiromantic rule according to which a diviner usually first records a dream and only then discerns its meaning. In Mesopotamian oneiromantic circles, the dreams/visions were often written down before their interpretation. A classic example of this oneiromantic practice can be found in Dan 7:1, where a visionary, after having a dream vision, proceeds with its exposition only after writing it down. The same oneiromantic practice can be observed in the early Enochic traditions, where Enoch habitually writes down the revelations received from angelic and divine agents. The references to the celestial and terrestrial tablets in Mesopotamian and Enochic lore might also implicitly connect these media of revelation(s) with the aforementioned mantic practices of recording the dream visions.

Enoch as the Primeval Sage

Scholars have observed that it is possible that “the oldest feature connected to Enoch is that of the primeval sage.”24 This role of the patriarch as a sage preoccupied with primeval knowledge and wisdom often has been considered by students of Enochic traditions to be principally responsible for shaping the patriarch’s legendary profile.

Enochic materials often name wisdom as one of the features of the patriarch’s teaching. Thus, for example, 1 Enoch 82:2–3 refers to the knowledge that Enoch transmitted to his son Methuselah as “wisdom”:

I have given wisdom () to you [Methuselah] and to your children, and to those who will be your children, that they may give (it) to their children for all the generations for ever – this wisdom () (which is) beyond their thoughts. And those who understand it will not sleep, but will incline their ears that they may learn this wisdom (), and it will be better for those who eat (from it) than good food.25

Although the attachment of the predicate “wisdom” to the teaching or personality of other elevated patriarchs and prophets is not an uncommon feature in Jewish pseudepigrapha and can be found even in the Enochic materials (for example, 2 Enoch 30:12 describes the prelapsarian Adam as a possessor of the divine wisdom), the claim that this wisdom has an everlasting nature is rare.

It is therefore notable that the passage specifically stresses that the wisdom of the patriarch has perennial value and must be transmitted for the future generations, and even “for all the generations for ever.” This eternal quality of the wisdom conveyed by the seventh antediluvian hero to humans is also stressed in the Cairo Genizah manuscript of Sir 44:16 which defines Enoch as the sign of knowledge for all generations (rwdw rwdl t(d tw)).26

Among other early Enochic materials, Jubilees also refers to the wisdom of the patriarch. Thus, Jub 4:17 mentions that “he [Enoch] was the first of mankind who were born on the earth who learned (the art of) writing, instruction, and wisdom () ….”27 This text seems to stress too the omniscience of the patriarch’s wisdom and understanding, referring to Enoch as the one who saw and understood everything.28

Besides the references to the patriarch’s role as a person endowed with eternal wisdom, some of the Enochic materials seem also to disclose his distinctive title as the wisest person among humans. One such bit of textual evidence can be found in 1 Enoch 92:1, where he is called the wisest person29 (in the Aramaic)30 or the writer of wisdom for future generations (Ethiopic):31 “Enoch, skilled scribe and wisest of men, and the chosen of the sons of men and judge of all the earth….”32

Besides the patriarch’s title of wise man, this passage also tells its readers about the composite nature of the designation. The appellation “wisest of men” accompanies here three other titles, pointing to the complex nature of the patriarch’s role as the wisest person among humans; this role appears to be interconnected with his other roles or maybe even construed through these designations. In this regard it should be noted that while several early investigations of the Enochic traditions sought to single out Enoch’s title as a sage as his most important designation and demarcate this function from his other roles and titles, they often paid little attention to the significance of other celestial and terrestrial titles and roles of the seventh antediluvian hero which helped shape his role as a sage in various Enochic materials.33

It must therefore be stressed that although Enoch’s role as a sage appears to be important, this function represents a composite office which necessarily includes some of his other roles – for example, an expert in secrets, a mediator, or a diviner – which unfold the various facets of Enoch’s acquisition, handling and transmission of wisdom. This research, therefore, will try to explicate the specific functions of Enoch as a sage through the exposition of his activities in various other offices, such as a scribe, an expert in the secrets, a mediator, among others.

Enoch as the Expert in Secrets

Helge Kvanvig observes that the seventh patriarch’s role as a sage cannot be separated from his expertise in celestial mysteries since “in Jewish tradition Enoch is primarily portrayed as a primeval sage, the ultimate revealer of divine secrets.”34

The patriarch’s prowess in the heavenly secrets is deeply embedded in the fabric of the Enochic myth and is set against the expertise in the celestial knowledge that the fallen Watchers once possessed.35 John Collins observes that “most significantly, Enoch is implicitly cast as a revealer of mysteries. The Watchers are angels who descend to reveal a worthless mystery.36 Enoch is a human being who ascends to get true revelation.”37

The traditions about the patriarch’s expertise in esoteric knowledge are attested in a variety of Enochic materials. In the Astronomical Book the possession and revelation of cosmological and astronomical secrets becomes a major function of the elevated Enoch. The origin of this role in Enochic traditions can be traced to 1 Enoch 72:1, 74:2, and 80:1, which depict the patriarch as a recipient of angelic revelations, including the celestial knowledge of astronomical, meteorological, and calendarical lore. He remains in this capacity in the majority of the materials associated with the early Enochic circle. In 1 Enoch 41:1 Enoch is portrayed as the one who “saw all secrets of heaven.”38

Jub 4:17 also attests to this peculiar role of the seventh patriarch. A large portion of 2 Enoch is devoted to Enoch’s initiation into the treasures of meteorological, calendarical, and astronomical lore during his celestial tour. The Slavonic apocalypse differs from the earlier materials in that it places special emphasis on the secrecy of cosmological revelations, thus demonstrating intriguing similarities with the later rabbinic developments with their stress on the secrecy of ty#)rb h#(m. Later Merkabah developments also underscore the role of Enoch as the “Knower of Secrets.” Thus, according to Synopse §14 (3 Enoch 11:2), Enoch-Metatron is able to behold “deep secrets and wonderful mysteries.”39 Martin Cohen, in his analysis of the Shiur Qomah materials, observes that this tradition depicts Metatron as “the revealer of the most recondite secrets about Godhead.”40

Several remarks should be made about the sources of Enoch’s knowledge. J. Collins’s research points to the passage in the Apocalypse of Weeks (1 Enoch 93:2) that succinctly summarizes the possible means by which the patriarch acquires the esoteric information.41 In this text Enoch informs us that he received it according to that which appeared to him in the heavenly vision, and which he knew from the words of the holy angels and understood from the tablets of heaven.42 The mention of these three sources underscores the fact that the revelations to the patriarch were given on various levels and through various means of mystical perception: seeing (a vision), hearing (oral instructions of angelus interpres) and reading (the heavenly tablets).

It is curious that the terminology pertaining to secrets began to play an increasingly significant role in the later stages of the development of the Enochic tradition. While in the earliest Enochic booklets, such as the Astronomical Book and the Book of the Watchers, the terminology pertaining to secrets and mysteries is barely discernible, it looms large in the later Enochic materials such as the Book of the Similitudes,43 2 Enoch and finally the Merkabah developments. This growing importance of terminology pertaining to secrets can be illustrated by 2 Enoch. While various manuscripts of 2 Enoch are known under different titles, most of them include the word “secrets.”44 In some of these titles the term is connected with Enoch’s books – “The Secret Books of Enoch.” In other titles, “secrets” are linked either to God (“The Book[s] [called] the Secrets of God, a revelation to Enoch”) or to Enoch himself (“The Book of the Secrets of Enoch”). This consistency in the use of the term “secrets,” in spite of its varied attribution to different subjects, indicates that the authors or the transmitters of the text viewed the motif of secrets as a central theme of the apocalypse. The Enochic notion of the secrets and its significance in 2 Enoch and Hekhalot writings will be the subject of particular investigation in a following chapter.

Finally, one must note that Enoch’s role as one who was initiated into the highest secrets of the universe might be implicitly reflected in his name. While several etymologies for the patriarch’s name have been proposed, many scholars suggest that the patriarch’s name might be related to the Hebrew root , in the sense “to train up,” “to dedicate,” or “to initiate” (Deut 20:5; 1 Kings 8:63; 2 Chron 7:5).45

Enoch as the Scribe

This section on the unique scribal functions of the seventh antediluvian patriarch begins with the passage found in 2 Enoch 22, which provides a graphic picture of the patriarch’s initiation into scribal activities. This initiation takes place near the Throne of Glory when the Lord himself commands the archangel Vereveil to give a pen to Enoch so that he can write the mysteries explained to him by the angels. This tradition about the scribal functions of the patriarch reflected in the Slavonic apocalypse was already documented in the earliest Enochic literature.46 The Book of Giants fragments label Enoch a distinguished scribe.47 In Jub 4:17, he is attested as the one who “learned (the art of) writing, instruction, and wisdom and who wrote down in a book the signs of the sky….”48 In the Merkabah tradition, Enoch/Metatron is also depicted as a scribe who has a seat (later a throne) in the heavenly realm.49 The theme of Enoch-Metatron’s scribal functions became a prominent motif in the later rabbinic traditions where, according to b. . 15a, the privilege of sitting beside God was accorded to Metatron alone by virtue of his character as a scribe, for he was granted permission as a scribe to sit and write down the merits of Israel. Targum Pseudo-Jonathan on Gen 5:24 describes Metatron as the Great Scribe ()br )rps).50

The important aspect of the early portrayals of Enoch as a scribe is that they depict him in the capacity of both celestial and terrestrial scribe, as the one who not only records messages from his heavenly guides, but also composes petitions at the request of the creatures from the lower realms, for example, the fallen Watchers/Giants who ask him for mediation. The celestial and terrestrial sides of Enoch’s duties as a scribe reveal the composite nature of this important role. Indeed the patriarch’s scribal office can be seen as a mixture of various activities which the Near Eastern scribe was expected to perform.51 Besides writing, this occupation also presupposes the ability to understand various scripts and languages, since scribal duties required proficiency in copying, i.e., duplicating written materials.52 One will see later the significance of this dimension of Enoch’s scribal activities during his encounters with the celestial tablets from which he often reads and which he also occasionally copies. Another facet of the patriarch’s scribal duties linked to his involvement in the Watchers/Giants’ situation highlights how his scribal duties resemble the functions of the legal scribe whose activities necessarily include settling disputes and writing petitions.53 J. Collins remarks that “Enoch is apparently modeled on the familiar figure of the scribe, whose skill in writing gives him importance not only in communication but also in legal proceedings.”54

Another detail which shows the composite nature of the patriarch’s scribal role is that this office cannot be separated from his initiation into the celestial lore. In early Enochic traditions these two functions appear to be conjoined. The motif of initiation into the secrets as the beginning of scribal activities occupies a substantial role in the Astronomical Book of 1 Enoch, the oldest Enochic material. 55 The same feature is discernible in the Enmeduranki material, where the initiation of the practitioner is combined with the motif of the transference to him of a tablet and a stylus.

James VanderKam observes that the Astronomical Book not only expands several traits of the patriarch that are briefly mentioned in Genesis 5, but also assigns an entirely new role56 to him, that of a writer57 of angelic discourses.58 VanderKam points out that the beginning of this new activity can be traced to one of the important testimonies in the Astronomical Book that reveals Enoch in his new celestial office. In 1 Enoch 74:259 the patriarch is depicted as the one who writes down the instructions of the angel Uriel regarding the secrets of the heavenly luminaries and their movements: “And Uriel, the holy angel who is the leader of them all, showed me everything, and I wrote down their positions as he showed (them) to me; and I wrote down their months, as they are, and the appearance of their light until fifteen days have been completed.”60

It can hardly be a coincidence that the text here names the angel Uriel as the one who initiates Enoch into the scribal activities; this angel is often depicted in the Enochic lore as a scribe himself.61

Later in the Astronomical Book (1 Enoch 81:6), Uriel advises the patriarch to write down the knowledge received in the celestial realm, so that Enoch can share it with his children during his upcoming visitation of the earth. The patriarch’s records made in heaven thus seem to play an important role in the transmission of the celestial secrets to humans in general and in particular to the patriarch’s son Methuselah, who, like Enmeduranki’s son in the Mesopotamian materials, occupies a special place in the mediating activities of the seventh antediluvian hero. One encounters this motif again in 1 Enoch 82:1, when Enoch assures his son Methuselah that he wrote a book for him.

It is puzzling that despite these numerous references to the patriarch’s scribal activities, the Astronomical Book does not overtly label Enoch as a scribe. This title with different variations, however, appears in other early Enochic books, including the Book of the Watchers, the Epistle of Enoch, and the Book of Giants. In these writings the patriarch’s scribal duties are surrounded by several titles and honorifics, including “scribe,” “scribe of righteousness,” “scribe of distinction,” and “the most skilled scribe.”

Scribe of Righteousness

The origin of the scribal titles in Enochic traditions can be traced to the Book of the Watchers, in which Enoch possesses several such titles. Although in 1 Enoch 12:3 the patriarch modestly refers to himself as a scribe, in 1 Enoch 12:4 and 15:11 he is defined by others by the honorific “scribe of righteousness,” which according to Milik can be related to the Aramaic term )+#wq rps.62 One must note that in early Enochic materials the patriarch’s scribal honorifics never appear as Enoch’s self-designation, but always come from the mouth of various clients who benefit from the fruits of his scribal expertise. It is therefore natural that the occurrences of the title “scribe of righteousness” are located in the narrative devoted to Enoch’s mission to the Watchers group.

In 1 Enoch 12:3–4 Enoch is asked by the faithful Watchers of the heaven to go to their rebellious brethren in order to announce God’s upcoming punishment for the iniquities they committed on earth. The faithful angels address63 the patriarch as “scribe of righteousness”: “And I Enoch was blessing the Great Lord and the King of Eternity, and behold the Watchers called to me, Enoch the scribe (), and said to me: ‘Enoch, scribe of righteousness, 64 () go, inform the Watchers of heaven….’”65

Chapter 13 of 1 Enoch portrays the patriarch as one who delivers the message of the upcoming judgment for Asael and other Watchers. The terrified Watchers solicit the patriarch’s help in writing a petition to God, asking for forgiveness. With Enoch’s help the petition is prepared, and during its reading the patriarch falls into a mantic dream in which he sees a vision of wrath. 1 Enoch 14 subsequently emphasizes that the Watchers’ petition will not be granted and that they will be “bound in the earth for all the days of eternity.”66 Enoch then travels to the throne of God where the Deity himself addresses him as “righteous man” and “scribe of righteousness,” telling the patriarch the truth about the sins of the rebellious angelic group: “And he answered me and said to me with his voice: Hear! Do not be afraid, Enoch, (you) righteous man and scribe of righteousness….”(1 Enoch 15:11).67

It is significant that the title “scribe of righteousness” appears in the narrative dealing with the group of fallen angelic beings and a righteous human destined to play the role of their mediator before God. It is quite possible that the title reflects not only the role of the elevated Enoch as an expert in writing, but his other roles, such as a righteous person, an expert in the “secrets of righteousness,” and a witness of the divine judgment.68 Christine Schams observes that the title “scribe of righteousness” suggests that “Enoch was not regarded as a mere professional writer.”69 In her opinion the title might be used “in conjunction with other attributes of the person. Most likely, Enoch’s expertise in writing and reading and his reputation as a righteous man, that is his teaching and knowledge of righteousness and God’s righteous judgment, were combined in his composite title of ‘scribe of righteousness.’”70

The composite nature of the epithet “scribe of righteousness” can be further illuminated through the reference to the Testament of Abraham (recension B) in which Enoch’s title as “scribe of righteousness” is combined with his role as a witness of the divine judgment. Testament of Abraham 11:2–4 reads:

And Michael said to Abraham, “Do you see the judge? This is Abel, who first bore witness, and God brought him here to judge. And the one who produces (the evidence) is the teacher of heaven and earth and the scribe of righteousness, Enoch. For the Lord sent them here in order that they might record the sins and the righteous deeds of each person. (B 11:2–4).71

It is intriguing that the Testament of Abraham also brings the scribal title into connection with Enoch’s role as the teacher of heaven and earth, which emphasizes the validity of the patriarch’s teaching not only for the citizens of earth but also for the inhabitants of heaven, i.e. angels.

It should be noted that in previous studies scholars tried to illuminate the etymology of the title “scribe of righteousness” by the reference to Enoch’s righteousness. Thus, Józef Milik connects the title with Enoch’s designation as a righteous man. He observes that the epithet “the scribe of righteousness” might underline Enoch’s moral rectitude in a way consonant with the patriarch’s designation as “the righteous man” in 1 Enoch 1:2.72 George Nickelsburg also points to the possible connection of the title “scribe of righteousness” with numerous analogies in Jewish writings from the Greco-Roman period which employ appellations for righteous individuals. He highlights possible links to the Teacher of Righteousness from the Qumran writings including 1QpHab 1:13 and CD 6:11.73

Scribe of Distinction

Qumran Enochic fragments of the Book of Giants (4Q203 8:4 and 4Q530 2:14) attest to another of the patriarch’s honorifics, “the scribe of distinction,” or “the distinguished scribe,” )#rp rps.74 Despite the extremely fragmentary character of the extant Qumran materials associated with the Book of Giants, the context of the original story can be partially restored with the help of portions of this book extant in the fragments of the Manichaean Book of Giants75 and in the later Jewish account known as the Midrash of Shemhazai and Azael.76

One of the fragments (4Q203 8:3–4) in which the title “scribe of distinction” occurs possibly refers to a situation in which a written material (a tablet or a letter) must be delivered to one of the leaders of the rebellious group, Shemihazah, and his companions: “Copy of the seco[n]d tablet of [the] le[tter…] by the hand of Enoch, the distinguished scribe ()#rp rps) […] and holy (one), to Shemihazah and to all [his] com[panions…].”77 Despite its fragmentary nature, the passage unambiguously connects Enoch with his scribal title, demonstrating that the context of the appellation is linked with his role as an envoy to the Watchers. Here again, as in the case of the previous title “scribe of righteousness,” the scribal honorific is not presented as Enoch’s self-definition, nor is it fashioned as an address. The title is rather given as a description, although the context of the narrative or the identity of its possible narrator is difficult to establish.

The second fragment in which the identical designation occurs is from another section of the Book of Giants in which the giant Ahya, son of Shemihazah, sees a symbolic dream, the meaning of which the Watchers cannot understand. They decide to approach Enoch and ask the patriarch to interpret the dream: “[…] The Giants could [not] find (someone) to explain to the[m] [the dream … to Enoch,] the scribe of distinction ()#rp rpsl), and he will interpret the dream for us” (4Q530 2:13–14).78

The important feature found in the passage is that Enoch’s designation as “distinguished scribe” is combined with the patriarch’s expertise in the interpretation of mantic dreams. This detail points to the fact that the honorific “distinguished scribe” also, as the previously analyzed cognomen “scribe of righteousness,” represents a composite title. Besides Enoch’s writing skills, this title most likely also expresses his mastery as a mantic diviner who is able to record and interpret mantic dreams. It might further allude to his expertise in legal matters. Milik suggests that this title might qualify Enoch as a professional, distinguished copyist who writes distinctly, clearly, and perhaps also as a redactor of laws which have the force of the judge’s decisions.79

It is possible that the epithets of the patriarch as the righteous scribe and the scribe of distinction are related to his scribal designations by creatures of the upper and lower realms. It was demonstrated above that Enoch is often addressed as the scribe of righteousness by angels and the Deity in the celestial realm. In the Testament of Abraham the same designation comes again from the mouth of an angel in the heavenly realm. In contrast to these addresses, the title “scribe of distinction” appears to be connected with Enoch’s designation(s) in the terrestrial realm. This title may be linked to Enoch’s earthly scribal duties and his distinguished reputation among his earthly clients, including the Watchers/Giants group who are able to discern his “distinction” from other scribes. Such differentiation is less appropriate in the upper realm where the scribal function(s) are usually performed solely by Enoch, and only occasionally by other angels.

Most Skilled Scribe?

Other evidence of a possible scribal honorific of the patriarch comes from 1 Enoch 92:1. This poorly preserved evidence is reliably attested only in the Ethiopic language, since no Greek version of this passage is available, and the Qumran materials pertaining to this passage (4Q212 2:22–24) survived in an extremely fragmentary form which contain only the context surrounding this term. Although Milik argues that the missing title might represent the already known appellation of Enoch as )#rp rps,, which also occurs in two Qumran fragments of the Book of Giants, not all scholars agree with this position. Matthew Black draws80 attention to the expressions found in an older recension81 of the Ethiopic text82 that possibly witnesses to a new title of the patriarch, “skilled scribe” or “scribe of all skill”; this title can be related to the expression ryhm rps, attested in the Bible with reference to Ezra.83 Christine Schams observes that “in much the same way as in Ezra 7:6, it remains unclear from 1 Enoch 92:1 whether the attribute ‘skilled scribe’ refers to Enoch’s dexterity as scribe, his wisdom, or both.”84

One must not forget that the great bulk of information about Enoch’s scribal roles and honorifics found in Enochic literature may implicitly point to the social profile of the authors of these writings. John Collins notes that the description of Enoch as “scribe of righteousness” suggests that the author and his circle may have been scribes too.85 He observes that although we know little about the authors of the Enochic writings, the books of Enoch “often speak of a class of the ‘righteous and chosen’ and Enoch, the righteous scribe, must be considered their prototype.”86 He further suggests that it is possible that these people “were, or at least included in their number, scribes who were familiar with a wide range of ancient lore and who wrote books in the name of Enoch.”87

Enoch as the Mediator

The patriarch’s mediatorial functions loom large in Enochic lore and constitute another highly complex and multifaceted role of this character. Early Enochic sources indicate that this role appears to be more complicated than the similar mediatorial duties of Enmeduranki attested in the tablet from Nineveh.

In contrast to the king of Sippar, whose mediation involves the task of bringing celestial knowledge to humans, the seventh antediluvian patriarch is portrayed as the one who not only dispatches knowledge from the celestial to the terrestrial realm but also conveys messages received in the lower realms to God and other celestial beings. 88

Of prime importance is that this two-way communication involves specific media of knowledge represented respectively by the heavenly tablets and Enoch’s petitions and testimonies written on behalf of fallen creatures. The patriarch’s mediating duties comprise a whole range of topographical and chronological dimensions. His functions as mediator are not confined to a particular realm or a particular petitioner, since his clients include a range of divine, angelic, human, and composite creatures. In the Book of the Watchers faithful angels of heaven ask him to assist their brethren in the lower realm. In this text he mediates on behalf of the rebellious group which includes the fallen Watchers and the Giants. In 2 Enoch the elders of the earth ask him for intercession. In the Genesis Apocryphon his son Methuselah is successful in obtaining through him special knowledge about the puzzling situation of Lamech.

Enoch’s mediating activities also are not limited by specific chronological boundaries. He mediates in the generation of the Flood, but he is also expected to be a mediator and the witness of the divine judgment in the eschatological period. The shorter recension of 2 Enoch 36:3 stresses the long-lasting scope of the patriarch’s mediating activities when it mentions the Lord’s invitation to Enoch to become his celestial scribe and witness of the divine judgment forever.

The range of the patriarch’s mediating activities is also very broad. He mediates knowledge, sharing the esoteric information which he received from various angelic and divine agents with humans. He mediates as intercessor, helping various creatures to record and deliver their petitions to the Creator. He also mediates judgment by recording the sins of humans and writing testimonies.

It is apparent that Enoch’s role as mediator interacts with a wide range of other roles and functions: he mediates through his scribal role when he writes petitions and testimonies and copies tablets. He mediates as a diviner who receives and interprets dreams and visions which serve as important mediums between the upper and lower realms. He mediates through the office of expert in the secrets, transmitting celestial wisdom to human beings. The aforementioned range of Enoch’s mediating activities demonstrates the highly complex nature of this office. Although it is extremely difficult to offer a comprehensive rationale that can effectively schematize all facets of this role, some general comments can be made.

One notices that Enoch’s mediating activities can be divided into two major categories: his mediation of knowledge and his mediation of divine judgment. Both spheres seem to represent important centers of the patriarch’s mediating activities.

Although mediation of divine judgment cannot be completely separated from Enoch’s mediation of knowledge since the former necessarily includes knowledge of the upcoming judgment that the patriarch possesses and sometimes shares with others, it is useful to confine Enoch’s mediation of divine judgment to a separate category. Indeed, this category appears to be more complex than his mediation of knowledge and can be viewed as encompassing two major activities taking place in two temporal loci.

First, a few words must be said about the temporal loci of Enoch’s mediating activities in reference to divine judgment. It appears that the patriarch is predestined to mediate judgment in two significant temporal loci. One of them is the historical locus associated with the generation of the Flood; in this locale Enoch acts as an intercessor and a writer of testimonies to the Watchers, Giants and humans. The second locus is eschatological and involves Enoch’s future role as witness of the divine judgment at the end of time.89 These two loci might be seen as the boundaries that demarcate the period covered by Enoch’s prominent role as God’s assistant in divine judgment. Indeed, in the time between the generation of the Flood and the upcoming final judgment, Enoch does not completely abandon his role as the witness of the divine judgment, since early Enochic traditions often depict him as the one who meticulously collects knowledge about the sins and righteous deeds of God’s creatures; this knowledge will be used at the time of the final arbitration.

The seventh antediluvian patriarch’s mediation of the divine judgment includes two roles that exhibit his unique position as the middleman between humans and God: the role of the intercessor and the role of a herald of the judgment. In his role as the intercessor, the seventh antediluvian hero acts as a special envoy from creatures to their Creator, bringing petitions and pleas to God. In his role as the herald of judgment the patriarch behaves as a messenger from the Creator warning the creatures of lower realms about future punishment.

The role of envoy to both parties, divine and human, becomes possible not only through the patriarch’s knowledge of the “secrets of the divine judgment” but also through his understanding of the secrets of the human heart. The later Hekhalot materials specifically stress Enoch-Metatron’s expertise in the mysteries not only of the Creator but also of the creatures. In Synopse §14 (3 Enoch 11) Enoch-Metatron conveys to R. Ishmael that “before a man thinks in secrets, I see his thought; before he acts, I see his act. There is nothing in heaven above or deep within the earth concealed from me.”90

In view of the multifaceted nature of the Enochic mediation, the further investigation of this role will be divided into three sections. The first section will deal with Enoch’s mediation of knowledge; this mediation is mainly represented by his transmission of sacred knowledge to people of earth in general and to his son in particular. The second section will deal with the historical locus of his mediation of judgment, and in particular with his dealings with the Watchers/Giants. Finally, the third section will deal with the patriarch’s role as the eschatological witness of the divine judgment and the writer of testimonies to the sinners of the earth.

Mediation of Knowledge

It has been previously noted that the patriarch’s roles as the expert in secrets and the scribe are interconnected in the early Enochic booklets. One of the significant links that unifies these two roles is the special knowledge that Enoch receives from angels and then must write down. The function of mediating knowledge is also what connects these two roles with the patriarch’s role as mediator. This tripartite cluster in which the seventh antediluvian patriarch acts simultaneously as a scribe, an expert in secrets, and a mediator is prominent in the Enochic materials and can be found already in the Astronomical Book (1 Enoch 82:1) where Enoch is depicted as a transmitter of special knowledge to his son Methuselah: “And now, my son Methuselah, all these things I recount to you and write down for you; I have revealed everything to you and have given you books about all these things. Keep, my son Methuselah, the books from the hand of your father, that you may pass (them) on to the generations of eternity.”91

In the passage from the Astronomical Book, as in the previously analyzed text about Enmeduranki,92 three roles of the seventh antediluvian hero, namely, his expertise in the secrets, his scribal activities and his role as a mediator, are tied together through the reference to the tablet dispatched to the hero, which serves as an important unifying symbol for this cluster of his roles.93 There is little doubt that Enoch’s writings in themselves represent the mediatorial tools, the media that are able to bridge the vertical and horizontal boundaries: the frontier lines between celestial and earthly realms, as well as the line of catastrophic demarcation between antediluvian and postdiluvian generations. The motif of Enoch’s writings as a mediatorial device for bridging the flood catastrophe is recurrent in Enochic traditions. Enoch’s writings serve the purpose of preserving knowledge in light of the impending flood. In 2 Enoch 33 God reveals to Enoch that the main function of his writings is the dissemination of knowledge and its preservation from the impending catastrophe:

And give them the books in your handwriting, and they will read them and they will acknowledge me as the Creator of everything…. And let them distribute the books in your handwritings, children to children and family to family and kinfolk to kinfolk…. So I have commanded my angels, Ariukh and Pariukh, whom I have appointed to the earth as their guardians, and I commanded the seasons, so they might preserve them [books] so they might not perish in the future flood which I shall create in your generation.94

Here again the three aforementioned roles of the patriarch are observable: Enoch’s scribal activities, his mediatorial role, and his role as an expert in secrets. The last role is hinted at through the reference to the guardian angels of Enoch’s writing.

Despite the apparent esoteric character of the knowledge conveyed by the angels and God to the seventh antediluvian patriarch, the dissemination of this information remains one of the major functions of Enoch-Metatron in various Enochic materials. They depict him as the one who shares astronomical, meteorological, calendarical, and eschatological knowledge with his sons and others during his short visit to the earth. He also delivers knowledge about the future destruction to the Watchers/Giants. In the Merkabah tradition, Enoch-Metatron is also responsible for transmitting the highest secrets to the Princes under him, as well as to humankind.

A significant aspect of this Enochic role is that this transmission of knowledge from celestial to earthly agents is executed not only through the written medium of the celestial books or the tablets, but also orally. In 1 Enoch 82:1 the patriarch says that for his son’s sake, he will recount and write down the things that he learned himself. Commenting on this passage, James VanderKam observes that “there is no mistaking the fact that Enoch relayed Uriel’s revelations to Methuselah both orally and in writings.”95

The event of oral instruction leads us to another Enochic role, teacher or instructor, which becomes a prominent theme later in the Merkabah tradition.96 Here Enoch-Metatron is portrayed as the Prince of Torah (Sar Torah) whose function is to instruct the visionaries in the secrets of the Torah and to educate the souls of the deceased infants in the wisdom of the Scriptures.97 This aspect of oral instruction plays a significant role already in 2 Enoch. Despite the explicit references to the Enochic books, a large body of the text is devoted to the extended oral instructions of Enoch to his sons, including Methuselah and the people of the earth.

Later Hekhalot materials refer to the adjuration of the Prince of Torah, who sometimes is identified in these texts with Metatron. One must not however forget that already in some early Enochic traditions as in the later Merkabah developments, the oral transmission of celestial knowledge can be initiated not simply by the elevated Enoch or some other angelic agent but also upon the request of humans. Here one can possibly see the beginning of the adjuration pattern prominent in later Jewish mysticism in general and in Hekhalot literature in particular. Thus, in some early Enochic texts, Methuselah is often depicted not only as a passive recipient of the traditions passed on to him by his elevated father but also, in a manner similar to the later Merkabah visionaries who invoke the Sar Torah, as someone who can actively initiate the quest for special knowledge from his heavenly patron. This motif is evident in 1 Enoch 106 and the Genesis Apocryphon, where Methuselah approaches Enoch in order to obtain knowledge about Lamech’s puzzling situation. According to these narratives, when Methuselah learned about Lamech’s suspicions, he decided to ask advice from Enoch. The Genesis Apocryphon reads: “he (Methuselah) left for the higher level, to Parvaim, and there he met Enoch, [his father…].”98 The active role of Methuselah is highlighted by the motif of his travel to “the higher level,” Parvaim, where he encounters Enoch. Genesis Apocryphon further tells us that “he (Methuselah) said to Enoch, his father: O my father and lord, to whom I have co[me…] […] I say to you: Do not be annoyed with me because I came here to […] you […] fear (?) before you […].”99 This ability of Methuselah to initiate the request for urgently needed information might also be reflected in the testimony preserved by Pseudo-Eupolemus, which attests to a tradition according to which “Methuselah … learned all things through the help of the angels of God, and thus we gained our knowledge.”100

A related motif is found in 2 Enoch 38, which depicts Enoch’s transition to earth after his transformation near the throne of Glory. The passage specifically mentions Methuselah as the one who was anticipating Enoch’s arrival, “mounting strict guard”101 at his bed. Although 2 Enoch 38 does not contain any explicit references to adjurational practices, this motif of awaiting the descent of the angel coupled with the reference to the ascetic practice of “mounting strict guard,” is provocative and can be compared to the later Hekhalot Sar Torah accounts with their emphasis on ascetic preparations for the adjuration of the Sar Torah.

Mediation of the Divine Judgment: Enoch’s Intercession for the Watchers

It has been previously mentioned that Enoch’s mediation of the divine judgment is connected with two important chronological points: the generation of the Flood, when he was appointed by God as a special envoy to the rebellious group of the Watchers, and the eschatological locus, where he is predestined to become the witness of the divine judgment at the end of times.102 This section of the investigation will deal with Enoch’s functions as a mediating force between God and the fallen Watchers/Giants, both as an intercessor and as a witness of judgment.

In various Enochic materials, the patriarch is pictured as a special messenger of the Deity to the Watchers/Giants – a messenger with a unique, long-lasting mission to this rebellious group, both on earth and in other realms. The Book of the Watchers depicts him as the intercessor for the fallen angels. His mission entails not only compassion for the fallen creatures but also the message of condemnation of their sins. According to Jub 4:22, Enoch “testified to the Watchers who had sinned with the daughters of men…. Enoch testified against all of them.”103 In the Book of Giants Enoch delivers the written sermon, reprimanding the Watchers/Giants’ sinful behavior and warning them about the upcoming punishment.104 Enoch’s mediating efforts are not limited solely to the fallen Watchers, but also include their faithful counterparts in heaven, who remained untouched by sin. 2 Enoch 18 portrays Enoch’s preaching to the Watchers of heaven during his celestial tour; he encourages them and suggests that they start the liturgy before the face of the Lord.105

Enoch’s role as the envoy to angels tells us something new about his position. VanderKam observes that “in 1 Enoch 12–16 the patriarch assumes a status far higher than he had enjoyed in earlier descriptions of him. In the Astronomical Book he relayed to his son and posterity the scientific information that Uriel had divulged to him, but here he becomes a mediating envoy between the Lord and the angels on whose behalf he intercedes.”106

This observation points to a significant difference in two mediating events. In the Astronomical Book the patriarch serves as a liaison between his angelic guide who entrusted him with celestial knowledge and the creatures of flesh and blood whom he must enlighten about the angelic secrets. In the Book of the Watchers Enoch’s status as mediator is much higher because he serves as an intermediary between the fallen angels and God. In this capacity as a middleman between the angelic group and the Deity, his status as intercessor is even higher than that of angels, since their sins (or the sins of their associates, as in the case of the faithful Watchers of heaven) place them now below the elevated humanity of the patriarch. The patriarch’s role as intercessor thus poses a paradox, resisting the traditional understanding of the intercession in which an angelic being must assume the role of intercessor on behalf of the creatures of flesh and blood. In 1 Enoch 15:2 God himself points to the paradox of Enoch’s role: “And go, say to the Watchers of heaven who sent you to petition on their behalf: ‘You ought to petition on behalf of men, not men on behalf of you.’”107

VanderKam observes that “Enoch becomes an official mediator for the angels because their crimes had made them too ashamed to approach their former heavenly home again.”108 The important aspect here is that the Watchers are not only ashamed to approach the Deity, they also seem to have lost their ability to serve effectively as mediators even on their own behalf. It is interesting to note that the text implies that under current conditions even the faithful Watchers of heaven are not able to serve as mediators between God and their former colleagues in the lower realm. Thus, 1 Enoch 12:3–13:1 implies the superiority of Enoch as a mediator even over the angels of heaven. The text depicts the faithful Watchers of heaven asking the patriarch to serve as an intermediary between God and their fallen brethren:

And I Enoch was blessing the Great Lord and the King of Eternity, and behold the Watchers called to me, Enoch the scribe, and said to me: “Enoch, scribe of righteousness, go inform the Watchers of heaven who left the high heaven and the holy place, and have corrupted themselves with the women ….”109

VanderKam observes that in Chapters 12–16 of 1 Enoch, “Enoch plays an intriguing and suggestive role: though he is a human being, he serves as an intermediary between angelic groups. He brings to the evil Watchers, who sinned with women and thereby unleashed all manner of evil on the earth, the announcement that they will have no peace.…”110 In 1 Enoch 13:3–4 one can hear a similar request for mediation by the patriarch from the fallen Watchers who, trembling before Enoch, ask him to write a petition from them to the Lord of heaven: “Then I went and spoke to them all together, and they were all afraid; fear and trembling seized them. And they asked me to write out for them the record of a petition that they might receive forgiveness, and to take the record of their petition up to the Lord in heaven.”111

Chapters 12–16 of 1 Enoch depict the patriarch repeatedly crossing the boundaries between celestial and terrestrial worlds on behalf of his clients in the lower and upper realms. Observing Enoch’s voyages, VanderKam notes that “Enoch, like the sinful angels, was one who crossed boundaries, but he, unlike them, retained the ability to retrace his steps. The angels, once they had committed themselves to the life of flesh and blood, lost the ability to return.”112

One must note that in the mediating encounters with the Watchers’ group the patriarch uses the medium of the written word. The fragments of the Book of Giants testify to the multifaceted nature of these activities. Here again the scribal role of the patriarch is closely connected with his office as mediator. Collins recognizes the connection between both duties, noting that “Enoch … is introduced initially in the role of scribe, and his function is one of intermediary between the angels in heaven and their fallen brethren on earth.”113

Mediation of the Divine Judgment: Enoch as Eschatological Witness

Chapter 36 of the short recension of 2 Enoch depicts the Lord appointing the elevated patriarch to several newly-acquired celestial offices, including those of the expert in secrets, the heavenly scribe, and the servant of the divine Face: “and you will be in front of my face from now and forever. And you will be seeing my secrets, and you will be scribe for my servants … and you will be for me a witness of the judgment of the great age.”114

The significant feature of this description is that, besides the three roles previously explored in the investigation, it contains a reference to Enoch’s office as a “witness of the divine judgment.” This eschatological role of the patriarch will later occupy a prominent part in early Jewish mysticism, where Metatron is named as )twdhs)d hbr )r#, “a great angel (prince) of testimony.” In the Merkabah tradition he appears also as the heavenly advocate defending Israel in the celestial court.

It is possible that Enoch’s role as a witness of the divine judgment has Mesopotamian roots. Alfred Haldar’s research demonstrates that in some Mesopotamian texts a  practitioner was considered an assistant to the “lords of decision,” Šamaš and Adad, the deities responsible for judgment. According to one Mesopotamian text, “the  shall seat himself before Šamaš and Adad on the tribunal and then judge a judgment of right and righteousness. Šamaš and Adad, the great gods, the Lords of vision, the Lords of decision, appear before him in order to decide a decision (and) answer him with a faithful yea.”115

In early Enochic materials the patriarch’s roles as a witness and the author of a testimony occur often. Their significance is effectively summarized in the Book of Jubilees,116 where a relatively short account of Enoch’s activities is literally saturated with the motifs and themes pertaining to his position as a witness of the divine judgment. According to Jub 4:19,117

He saw in a vision what has happened and what will occur – how things will happen for humankind during their history until the day of judgment. He saw everything and understood. He wrote a testimony for himself and placed it upon the earth against all mankind and for their history.118

As with Enoch’s mediation in knowledge, which was carried out through distinctive written materials (tablets/books and petitions), the mediation of divine judgment again is executed through the written medium: Enoch’s testimony, depicted as a writing placed on the earth. This latter feature may indicate that this written evidence, just like some of Enoch’s other records, also bridged the boundaries between the heavenly and earthly realms.119 One must note that Enoch’s role as the witness of the divine judgment is rooted in his extraordinary personal situation: he was able to become a righteous person in the generation prominent for its iniquities. This is why according to the Greek text of Ben Sira 44:16, Enoch is predestined to serve as the “sign of repentance for the generations.” This unique destiny also makes him the witness of the divine judgment at the time of the final condemnation. Jub 4:23–24 attests to this peculiar role of the patriarch:

He was taken from human society, and we led him into the Garden of Eden for (his) greatness and honor. Now he is there writing down the judgment and condemnation of the world and all the wickedness of mankind. Because of him the flood water did not come on any of the land of Eden because he was placed there as a sign and to testify against all people in order to tell all the deeds of history until the day of judgment.120

It has been already mentioned that Enoch’s role as witness of the divine judgment appears to have two loci: historical and eschatological. He was able to testify in a temporal locus which was situated in the antediluvian generation: “he testified to the Watchers who had sinned with the daughters of men because these had begun to mix with earthly women so that they became defiled. Enoch testified against all of them.”121 He also will testify against sinners of all generations in the final day of judgment at the end of the times. 122

A passage found in one of the recensions of the Testament of Abraham seems to allude to this eschatological role of the seventh patriarch; Enoch is depicted as witness of the divine judgment,123 helping Abel, who is the eschatological judge:

And Michael said to Abraham, “Do you see the judge? This is Abel, who first bore witness, and God brought him here to judge. And the one who produces (the evidence) is the teacher of heaven and earth and the scribe of righteousness, Enoch. For the Lord sent them here in order that they might record the sins and the righteous deeds of each person.” And Abraham said, “And how can Enoch bear the weight of the souls, since he has not seen death? Or how can he give the sentence of all the souls?” And Michael said, “If he were to give sentence concerning them, it would not be accepted. But it is not Enoch’s business to give sentence; rather the Lord is the one who gives sentence, and it is this one’s (Enoch’s) task only to write. For Enoch prayed to the Lord saying, ‘Lord, I do not want to give the sentence of the souls, lest I become oppressive to someone.’ And the Lord said to Enoch, ‘I shall command you to write the sins of a soul that makes atonement, and it will enter into life. And if the soul has not made atonement and repented, you will find its sins (already) written, and it will be cast into punishment.’” (B 11:2–10).124

At the conclusion of this section, another detail connected with Enoch’s role as witness of the divine judgment must be mentioned. It appears that this prominent role includes the duty of visiting places connected with the scenes of the current and the eschatological judgments. In a variety of Enochic traditions, the patriarch is depicted as a seer led by his angelic guides to the places of the execution of the divine judgment, as well as to the terrifying places where various sinful creatures await their final trial(s).125 He must travel to the frontiers of the abyss, where in the fiery cosmic prisons, angelic hosts are punished for their iniquities. On these journeys Enoch often sees both preliminary and final places of the punishment of the fallen angels. One of the passages found in 1 Enoch 21:1–8 might give a hint of the emotions that Enoch is predestined to experience in his encounter with the places of the divine judgment:

And I saw a terrible thing – neither the high heaven, nor the (firmly) founded earth, but a desert place, prepared and terrible. And there I saw seven stars of heaven bound on it together like great mountains, and burning like fire.…And from there I went to another place, more terrible than this, and I saw a terrible thing: (there was) a great fire there which burned and blazed, and the place had a cleft (reaching) to the abyss, full of great pillars of fire which were made to fall; neither its extent nor its size could I see, nor could I see its source. Then I said: “How terrible this place (is), and (how) painful to look at!”126

Enoch as the Heavenly Priest

Enmeduranki’s priestly office, which is only implicitly hinted at in the text from Nineveh, finds its possible Enochic counterpart in the priestly role of the seventh patriarch. In contrast to Enmeduranki’s appointments in the earthly sanctuary Ebabbara, the Enochic tradition shifts emphasis from the earthly to the celestial locale in depicting the seventh antediluvian hero, not in his terrestrial priestly role, but in the role associated with the heavenly temple. This role is attested with varying degrees of clarity by early Enochic traditions found in the Book of the Watchers, the Book of Dreams and the Book of Jubilees. Enoch’s affiliations with the priestly office in the aforementioned texts can be seen as the gradual evolution from the implicit hints of his heavenly priesthood in the early materials to a more overt recognition and description of his celestial sacerdotal function in the later ones. While later Enochic traditions attested in the Book of Jubilees unambiguously point to Enoch’s priestly role, referring to his incense sacrifice in the celestial sanctuary, the earlier associations of the patriarch with the heavenly Temple hinted at in the Book of the Watchers take the form of rather enigmatic depictions. A certain amount of exegetical work is therefore required to discern the proper meaning of these initial associations of the patriarch with the celestial sanctuary.

Martha Himmelfarb’s research helps us better understand Enoch’s possible connections with the celestial sanctuary in the Book of the Watchers, which depicts the ascension of the seventh antediluvian patriarch to the Throne of Glory as a visitation of the heavenly Temple.127 1 Enoch 14:9–18 reads:

And I proceeded until I came near to a wall () which was built of hailstones, and a tongue of fire surrounded it, and it began to make me afraid. And I went into the tongue of fire and came near to a large house () which was built of hailstones, and the wall of that house (was) like a mosaic (made) of hailstones, and its floor (was) snow. Its roof (was) like the path of the stars and flashes of lightning, and among them (were) fiery Cherubim, and their heaven (was like) water. And (there was) a fire burning around its wall, and its door was ablaze with fire. And I went into that house, and (it was) hot as fire and cold as snow, and there was neither pleasure nor life in it. Fear covered me and trembling, I fell on my face. And I saw in the vision, and behold, another house, which was larger than the former, and all its doors (were) open before me, and (it was) built of a tongue of fire. And in everything it so excelled in glory and splendor and size that I am unable to describe to you its glory and its size. And its floor (was) fire, and above (were) lightning and the path of the stars, and its roof also (was) a burning fire. And I looked and I saw in it a high throne, and its appearance (was) like ice and its surrounds like the shining sun and the sound of Cherubim.128

Commenting on this passage, Himmelfarb draws the readers’ attention to the description of the celestial edifices which Enoch encounters in his approach to the Throne. She notes that the Ethiopic text reports that, in order to reach God’s Throne, the patriarch passes through three celestial constructions: a wall, an outer house, and an inner house. The Greek version of this narrative mentions a house instead of a wall. Himmelfarb observes that “more clearly in the Greek, but also in the Ethiopic this arrangement echoes the structure of the earthly temple with its vestibule (Mlw)), sanctuary (lkyh), and the Holy of Holies (rybd).”129

God’s throne is located in the innermost chamber of this heavenly structure and is represented by a throne of cherubim (14:18). It can be seen as a heavenly counterpart to the cherubim found in the Holy of Holies in the Jerusalem temple. In drawing parallels between the descriptions of the heavenly Temple in the Book of the Watchers and the features of the earthly sanctuary, Himmelfarb observes that the fiery cherubim which Enoch sees on the ceiling of the first house (Ethiopic) or middle house (Greek) of the heavenly structure represent not the cherubim of the divine throne, but images that recall the figures on the hangings on the wall of the tabernacle mentioned in Exod 26:1, 31; 36:8, 35 or possibly the figures which, according to 1 Kings 6:29, 2 Chr 3:7 and Ezek 41:15–26, were engraved on the walls of the earthly temple.130

Several comments must be made about the early traditions and sources that may lie behind the descriptions of the upper sanctuary in 1 Enoch 14. Scholars observe that the idea of heaven as a temple was not invented by the author of the Book of the Watchers; the concept of the heavenly temple as a celestial counterpart of the earthly sanctuary was widespread in the ancient Near East131 and appears in a number of biblical sources.132 Students of Jewish priestly traditions have observed that the existence of such a conception of the heavenly sanctuary appears to become increasingly important in times of religious crises, when the earthly sanctuaries were either destroyed or defiled by improper rituals or priestly successions.133

Returning to the analysis of 1 Enoch 14, one must examine the motif of the servants of the heavenly sanctuary depicted in that text. Himmelfarb argues that the priests of the heavenly temple in the Book of the Watchers appear to be represented by angels,134 since the author of the text depicts them as the ones who are “standing before God’s throne in the heavenly temple.”135 In her opinion, such identification can also be implicitly supported by the motif of intercession, which represents “a central priestly task.” Himmelfarb also points to the possibility that in the Book of the Watchers the patriarch himself in the course of his ascent become a priest,136 similarly to the angels.137 In this perspective the angelic status of patriarch and his priestly role138 are viewed as mutually interconnected. Himmelfarb stresses that “the author of the Book of the Watchers claims angelic status for Enoch through his service in the heavenly temple” since “the ascent shows him passing through the outer court of the temple and the sanctuary to the door of the Holy of Holies, where God addresses him with his own mouth.”139

George Nickelsburg’s earlier research on the temple symbolism in 1 Enoch 14 provides important additional details relevant to this discussion. Nickelsburg argues that Enoch’s active involvement in the vision of the Lord’s throne, when he passes through the chambers of the celestial sanctuary, might indicate that the author(s) of the Book of the Watchers perceived him as a servant associated with the activities in these chambers. Nickelsburg points to the fact that Enoch’s vision of the Throne in the Book of the Watchers is “qualitatively different from that described in the biblical throne visions” because of the new active role of its visionary.140 This new, active participation of Enoch in the vision puts 1 Enoch 14 closer to later Merkabah accounts which are different from biblical visions. Nickelsburg stresses that in the biblical throne visions, the seer is passive or, at best, his participation is reactional. But in the Merkabah accounts, Enoch appears to be actively involved in his vision.141 In Nickelsburg’s view, the verbal forms of the narrative (“I drew near the wall,” “I went into that house”) serve as further indications of the active participation of the seer in the visionary reality of the heavenly Throne/Temple.142

Biblical visions are not completely forgotten by Enochic authors and provide an important exegetical framework for 1 Enoch 14. Comparing the Enochic vision with Ezekiel’s account of the temple, Nickelsburg suggests that the Enochic narrative also represents a vision of the temple but, in this case, the heavenly one. He argues that “the similarities to Ezek 40–48, together with other evidence, indicate that Enoch is describing his ascent to the heavenly temple and his progress through its temenos to the door of the Holy of Holies, where the chariot throne of God is set.”143 The possibility that the author of 1 Enoch 14 was trying to describe Enoch’s celestial trip as a tour through the heavenly temple can be supported, in Nickelsburg’s judgment, by three significant details:

a. the “house” (14:10) of the Deity is by definition a temple;

b. both 12:4 and 15:3 speak about the eternal sanctuary;

c. the language about the fallen Watchers and the angels approaching God indicates that some of the angels are understood to be priests. 144

The traditions about the seventh patriarch’s heavenly priesthood are not confined solely to the materials found in the Book of the Watchers, since they are attested in other materials associated with the Ethiopic Enoch, including the Animal Apocalypse. If in the Book of the Watchers, Enoch’s associations with the heavenly temple are clothed in ambiguous imagery, his portrait in the Animal Apocalypse does not leave any serious doubts that some of the early Enochic traditions understood the patriarch to be intimately connected with the heavenly sanctuary.

Chapter 87, verses 3 and 4 of 1 Enoch portrays the patriarch taken by three angels from the earth and raised to a high tower, where he is expected to remain until he will see the judgment prepared for the Watchers and their earthly families:

And those three who came out last took hold of me by my hand, and raised me from the generations of the earth, and lifted me on to a high place, and showed me a tower () high above the earth, and all the hills were lower. And one said to me: “Remain here until you have seen everything which is coming upon these elephants and camels and asses, and upon the stars, and upon all the bulls.”145

VanderKam notes a significant detail in this description, namely, Enoch’s association with a tower. He observes that this term146 is reserved in the Animal Apocalypse for a temple.147 The association of the patriarch with the tower is long-lasting, and apparently he must have spent a considerable amount of time there, since the text does not say anything about Enoch’s return to the earth again until the time of judgment, so the patriarch is depicted as present in the heavenly sanctuary for most of the Animal Apocalypse.148

Although the traditions about Enoch’s associations with the heavenly Temple in the Book of the Watchers and in the Animal Apocalypse do not refer openly to his performance of priestly duties, the account attested in the Book of Jubilees explicitly makes this reference. Jubilees 4:23 depicts Enoch as taken from human society and placed in Eden149 “for (his) greatness and honor.”150 Jubilees then defines the Garden as a sanctuary151 and Enoch as one who is offering an incense sacrifice on the mountain of incense: “He burned the evening incense of the sanctuary which is acceptable before the Lord on the mountain of incense.”152 James VanderKam suggests that here Enoch is depicted as one who “performs the rites of a priest in the temple.”153 He further observes that Enoch’s priestly duties154 represent a new element155 in “Enoch’s expanding portfolio.”156

Alexander stresses the significance of Enoch’s priestly role for the subsequent Jewish developments,157 noting that “Enoch in Jubilees in the second century B.C.E. is a high priest. Almost a thousand years later he retains this role in the Heikhaloth texts, though in a rather different setting.”158 Indeed in the later rabbinic and Hekhalot sources, Metatron is often associated with the priestly office.159 One such source is a fragment from the Cairo Genizah in which he is directly named as the high priest:

I adjure you [Metatron], more beloved and dear than all heavenly beings, [Faithful servant] of the God of Israel, the High Priest, chief of [the priest]s, you who poss[ess seven]ty names; and whose name [is like your Master’s] … Great Prince, who is appointed over the great princes, who is the head of all the camps.160

In one further note, I must comment on particular details surrounding the depiction of Enoch’s priestly duties in early Enochic lore. The Book of the Watchers does not refer to any liturgical or sacrificial rituals of the patriarch; on the other hand, Jubilees depicts the patriarch offering incense to God. The absence of reference to any animal sacrificial or liturgical practice in Enoch’s sacerdotal duties might indicate that his office may have been understood by early Enochic traditions from the divinatory angle, that is as the office of oracle-priest, practiced also by the Mesopotamian diviners who, similarly to Enoch’s preoccupation with incense, widely used the ritual of libanomancy, or “smoke divination,” a “practice of throwing cedar shavings onto a censer in order to observe the patterns and direction of the smoke.”161

Enoch’s Titles in the Similitudes

It has been mentioned that the Book of the Similitudes endows the seventh antediluvian patriarch with several roles and titles previously unknown in the early Enochic lore. The analysis of these roles and titles is important for this investigation of the evolution from Enoch to Metatron since in the Similitudes, for the first time in the Enochic tradition, the patriarch is depicted as a preexistent enthroned figure whose mission is to become an eschatological leader in the time when the wicked of this world will be punished. The reference to this highly elevated office recalls the future profile of the supreme angel Metatron known in some rabbinic and Hekhalot accounts. The relevance of the roles and titles found in the Similitudes as possible formative patterns for the future roles and titles of Metatron will be discussed in the later sections of this study. For now, the purpose of this investigation is to introduce and briefly describe these titles.

The enigmatic figure of the eschatological leader, possibly associated with Enoch, is designated in the Similitudes by four titles: righteous one (), anointed one (), chosen one (), and son of man ().162 These designations occur with various degrees of frequency in the Ethiopic text; while the first two titles are used rather sparingly, the other two designations are quite widespread and appear many times in the Similitudes.

Righteous One”

Although the expression “righteous one” occurs at least four times in the Ethiopic text of the Similitudes, not all of these references are equally valuable for the ongoing investigation of Enoch’s titles. VanderKam suggests that one of these occurrences is “text-critically doubtful,” and two of them do not constitute an individual title but rather represent collective designations. He is confident, however, that the single case in which “righteous one” is used as an individual title of the eschatological leader is 1 Enoch 53:6.163

1 Enoch 53 describes the upcoming destruction of the wicked, including the kings and the powerful of this world, by the hands of the angels of punishment. In 1 Enoch 53:6–7 an eschatological figure of great significance appears; the text applies two titles, “righteous one” and “chosen one” to this figure:

And after this the Righteous () and Chosen One () will cause the house of his congregation to appear; from then on, in the name of the Lord of Spirits, they will not be hindered. And before him these mountains will not be (firm) like the earth, and the hills will be like a spring of water; and the righteous will have rest from the ill-treatment of the sinners.164

The title “chosen one” will be examined in a later section. First I direct my attention to “righteous one.”

It is significant for this investigation of the provenance of the Enochic titles that this title appears to be rooted in biblical traditions. Scholars have suggested that the possible provenance of the title “righteous one” might be Isa 53:11.165 In this text the epithet “the righteous one” is applied to the servant of the Lord: “the righteous one, my servant, shall make many righteous, and he shall bear their iniquities.” VanderKam points out that in the Similitudes the title “righteous one” is never used alone in application to an eschatological figure; it is found only in conjunction with another title, “chosen one.”166 This conjunction serves as a significant clue that in the Similitudes all four titles of the elevated messianic character are closely interconnected.

Anointed One”

Another title associated with the elevated hero of the Similitudes is “anointed one.” This title occurs twice in Chapters 48 and 52 of the book.167 In 1 Enoch 48:10 the title is introduced in the eschatological context in which the wicked of this world represented by rulers of the earth will fall down before the son of man but “there will be no one who will take them with his hands and raise them” because they “denied the Lord of Spirits and his Messiah (“anointed one”).”168 Scholars have observed that the author of this passage appears to be relying on biblical terminology, more precisely, on the expressions from Ps 2:2 that refer to rulers and kings of the earth taking “counsel together, against the Lord and his anointed.”169 Here again, as in the case of “righteous one,” the author(s) of the Similitudes prefers to seek the background of the hero’s titles not in Mesopotamian but in biblical sources.

The second occurrence of the same title appears in 1 Enoch 52. The patriarch, carried off by a whirlwind, beholds the secrets of heaven, which include several mountains associated with particular metals: “a mountain of iron, and a mountain of copper, and a mountain of silver, and a mountain of gold, and a mountain of soft metal, and a mountain of lead.”170 Enoch is further instructed by his angelus interpres that these mountains are predestined to “serve the authority of his Messiah (‘anointed one’).”

Chosen One”

This title is used many times in the Similitudes, designating again, as in the case of the previous two designations, an eschatological character.171 The description of the “chosen one” in the Similitudes paints a picture of a highly elevated celestial being. This being apparently has his own throne in the celestial realm since one of the passages, found in 1 Enoch 45:3–4, depicts the chosen one as the one who has been installed on the throne of glory:

On that day the Chosen One () will sit on the throne of glory, and will choose their works, and their resting-places will be without number; and their spirits within them will grow strong when they see my Chosen one () and those who appeal to my holy and glorious name. And on that day I will cause my Chosen One () to dwell among them, and I will transform heaven and make it an eternal blessing and light.172

The significant detail in this description is that the “chosen one” was set on his throne of glory by the Lord of Spirits (61:8).173 From this elevated seat he will then judge Asael and the angels associated with this rebellious leader (55:4).174

As in the case of the previous two, this title appears to rely on imagery drawn from biblical materials. Scholars point to the possible roots of the title “chosen one” in Isa 41:8, 9; 42:1; 43:10, where this designation is applied to the servant of the Lord.175

Son of Man”

This title is formulated in the Similitudes with three different Ethiopic expressions.176 It appears multiple times and can be found in 1 Enoch 46:2, 3, 4; 48:2; 62:5, 7, 9, 14; 63:11; 69:26, 27, 29 [twice]; 70:1; 71:14; 71:17. The profile of the “son of man” as an elevated celestial being recalls the figure of the “chosen one” analyzed in the previous section.177 As with the “chosen one,” “son of man” is a character associated with the celestial secrets who also has a throne of glory (62:5; 69:27, 29) from which he will judge sinners.

Scholars have observed that some features of the “son of man” traditions in the Similitudes recall details found in Daniel 7, where one can find a messianic figure designated as “one like a son of man.”178 The parallels with the Daniel “son of man” can be illustrated by reference to 1 Enoch 46:1–4, where the title is introduced and then repeated several times:

And there I saw one who had a head of days, and his head (was) white like wool; and with him (there was) another, whose face had the appearance of a man, and his face (was) full of grace, like one of the holy angels. And I asked one of the holy angels who went with me, and showed me all the secrets, about that Son of Man (), who he was, and whence he was, (and) why he went with the Head of Days. And he answered me and said to me: “This is the Son of Man () who has righteousness, and with whom righteousness dwells; he will reveal all the treasures of that which is secret, for the Lord of Spirits has chosen him, and through uprightness his lot has surpassed all before the Lord of Spirits for ever. And this Son of Man () whom you have seen will rouse the kings and the powerful from their resting-places, and the strong from their thrones, and will loose the reins of the strong, and will break the teeth of the sinners.179

In this passage, an enigmatic character appears whose designation as “the head of days” recalls the Daniel figure of the “ancient of days.”

The significant feature of the son of man’s profile in the Similitudes is that the text understands this character as preexistent, even possibly a divine being who received his name before the time of creation. One sees this in 1 Enoch 48:2–7:

And at that hour that Son of Man () was named in the presence of the Lord of Spirits, and his name (was named) before the Head of Days. Even before the sun and the constellations were created, before the stars of heaven were made, his name was named before the Lord of Spirits. He will be a staff to the righteous and the holy, that they may lean on him and not fall, and he (will be) the light of the nations, and he will be the hope of those who grieve in their hearts. All those who dwell upon the dry ground will fall down and worship before him, and they will bless, and praise, and celebrate with psalms the name of the Lord of Spirits. And because of this he was chosen and hidden before him before the world was created, and forever.180

One can see that, as with the previous titles from the Similitudes, biblical traditions play a pivotal role in inspiring the author(s) of this book in their portrayal of the “son of man.” For such inspiration, they go not only to the prominent account found in the Book of Daniel but also to other biblical materials. VanderKam observes that the reference to the fact that the “son of man” was in God’s mind before the creation recalls the passage from Isa 49:1. In this text the servant of the Lord defines himself in similar terms, saying that “the Lord called me before I was born, while I was in my mother’s womb he named me.”181 VanderKam argues that “there is no mistaking the author’s appeal to the servant of the Lord in 2 Isaiah, in which he is to be a light to the nations (42:6; 49:6).”182

Interdependence of the Four Titles and Their Identification with Enoch in the Similitudes

An important feature in the four titles is that they seem to be used interchangeably in the Similitudes and appear to be referring to one composite figure. George Nickelsburg notes that “the identification of these figures with one another is understandable; for all their differences, their characteristics and functions can be seen to be compatible and complementary.”183 Indeed, as was already shown in this present investigation, the combination of the titles “righteous one” and the “chosen one” in 1 Enoch 53:6–7 indicates that they were used here for the same protagonist. The same interchangeability is observable in the titles “son of man” and “chosen one.” Here, however, the equivalency is established not through the combination of the titles but through their separation. Scholars previously observed that the titles “son of man” and “chosen one,” the two most widely used titles in the Similitudes, always occur in separate sections of the text, and never together.184 Morna Hooker’s research demonstrates that, while Chapters 38–45 use the title “chosen one,” Chapters 46–48 operate with “son of man.” This pattern continues further as the material from 1 Enoch 49–62:1 applies the title “chosen one,” while 1 Enoch 62:1–71 chooses to use “son of man.”185 The separation of these two titles appears to indicate that the author(s) or editor(s) of the Similitudes perceived them to be interchangeable.

A large group of scholars believe that all four eschatological titles found in the Similitudes refer to one individual, namely the patriarch Enoch himself, who in 1 Enoch 71 is identified186 with the “son of man.”187 The crucial issue for the possible identification of the four titles with the seventh antediluvian patriarch is the status of Chapters 70–71.188 Some scholars believe that these chapters might represent later interpolation(s) and do not belong to the original text of the Book of the Similitudes;189 they note that these two chapters do not appropriately correspond with the tripartite structure of the Similitudes. The content of these chapters also raises some critical questions. First, 1 Enoch 70–71 exhibits repetitiveness that might indicate the attempt to expand the original material. Second, for a long time students of the Enochic traditions were puzzled by the fact that the son of man, who in the previous chapters of the Similitudes has been distinguished from Enoch, suddenly becomes identified in 1 Enoch 71 with the patriarch. This identification seems to contradict the rest of the text since it appears impossible for a seer to fail to recognize himself in the vision. John Collins points to the uniqueness of such a misidentification in the Jewish apocalyptic literature, where a visionary would scarcely fail to recognize himself in such an auto-vision.190 Moreover, in view of the preexistent nature of the son of man in 1 Enoch 48:2–7, it is difficult to reconcile this character with the figure of the seventh patriarch who was born from human parents in the antediluvian era.

Several explanations have been proposed to resolve this puzzling situation. Scholars have observed191 that the Similitudes seems to entertain the idea of the heavenly twin (counterpart) of a visionary when they identify Enoch with the son of man.192 James VanderKam suggests that the puzzle of the Similitudes can be explained by the Jewish belief, attested in several ancient Jewish texts, that a creature of flesh and blood could have a heavenly double or counterpart. As an example, VanderKam points to Jacob traditions in which the patriarch’s “features are engraved on high.”193 He stresses that this theme of the visionary’s ignorance of his higher angelic identity is observable in other Jewish pseudepigrapha, including the Prayer of Joseph.

In the light of the Jewish traditions about the heavenly counterpart of the visionary, VanderKam’s hypothesis appears to be plausible, and it is possible that in the Similitudes the seventh antediluvian patriarch was indeed identified with the son of man and the other titles pertaining to this figure.

In the conclusion of this section, several observations can be offered in connection with Enochic titles attested in the Similitudes. First, one cannot fail to recognize that in contrast to other designations of Enoch found in the early Enochic materials, the titles from the Book of Similitudes exhibit strong roots and connections with the motifs and themes found in the Bible, particularly in the Book of Isaiah, Psalm 2, and the Book of Daniel. Scholars have therefore proposed that these titles might be shaped by familiar biblical characters, such as the Servant of the Lord found in Deutero-Isaiah and the Son of Man found in Daniel 7. Such explicit reliance on known biblical characters demonstrates a striking contrast to the provenance of other titles of Enoch not found in the Similitudes (like the scribe, the expert in secrets, and the priest). It seems that these do not have explicit biblical roots but are rather based on independent Mesopotamian traditions.194

Second, the peculiar feature of the titles found in the Similitudes is that they can be found only in this part of the Ethiopic Enoch. Other booklets of this Enochic composition, such as the Astronomical Book, the Book of the Watchers, the Book of Dreams, and the Epistle of Enoch, do not refer to these titles of the patriarch. It is also curious that other early Enochic materials, including the Genesis Apocryphon, Jubilees, Book of Giants, and 2 Enoch, do not provide any references either to these titles or to the features associated with them. For example, early Enochic booklets are silent about Enoch’s enthronement on the seat of glory. This absence of allusions and cross-references with other Enochic writings appears to be quite puzzling and unusual since the information about other titles not found in the Similitudes, such as the scribe, the expert in the secrets, the priest, are typically employed as sets of recurring motifs supported by various texts, including the various booklets of 1 Enoch, Jubilees, the Genesis Apocryphon, the Book of Giants and 2 Enoch. It is also baffling that the later rabbinic and Hekhalot materials are silent about the Enochic titles found in the Book of the Similitudes. James Davila’s research points to the fact that the titles found in the Similitudes, like messiah, son of man and righteous one, are dropped almost entirely195 in the Merkabah tradition.196 This issue will constitute a special topic of the discussion in the following sections. Finally, another puzzling characteristic of the Similitudes’ titles must be mentioned. In the ambiguous identification of Enoch with the “son of man” depicted in 1 Enoch 71, one finds a unique way of introducing this Enochic title which never occurs in the case of Enoch’s other titles. In early Enochic booklets each designation is usually introduced through the gradual unfolding of the patriarch’s activities pertaining to the particular title. In contrast, the Book of the Similitudes refuses to depict in any way Enoch’s participation in various offices which stand behind the Similitudian titles. Nothing is said about the patriarch’s messianic mission or his role in judging the mighty ones of the world. Enoch is rather depicted as a mere beholder of these deeds, which the text unambiguously associates with one or another eschatological figure. He is only named as a “son of man,” who in no way attempts to execute the offices pertaining to this and other titles.

1 Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 2.57–58.

2 VanderKam, Enoch and the Growth of an Apocalyptic Tradition, 116. For the criticism of VanderKam’s position, see: A. Bedenbender, “Jewish Apocalypticism: A Child of Mantic Wisdom?” Henoch 24 (2002) 189–196, esp. 193. See also: M. A. Knibb, “Enoch Literature and Wisdom Literature,” Henoch 24 (2002) 197–203.

3 Balaam’s connections with the world of divination, and specifically with the practices of the Babylonian diviner gild of the barutim, were explored in several studies. See S. Daiches, “Balaam – a Babylonian Baru: The Episode of Num 22, 2–4, 24 and Some Babylonian Parallels,” in Hilprecht Anniversary Volume: Studies in Assyriology and Archeology (Leipzig: Hinrichs, 1909) 60–70; R. Largement, “Les oracles de Bileam et la mantique suméro-akkadienne,” École des langues orientales anciennes de l’Institut catholique de Paris: Mémorial du cinquantenaire 1914–64 (Travaux de l’Institut catholique de Paris 10; Paris: Bloud et Gay, 1964) 37–50; M. S. Moore, The Balaam Traditions: Their Character and Development (SBLDS 113; Atlanta: Scholars, 1990).

4 VanderKam, Enoch and the Growth of an Apocalyptic Tradition, 116–17.

5 VanderKam observes that “it seems odd that a Jewish writer would present his hero in language dripping with reminders of the diviner who tried to curse Israel, but the author did just that, and he did so at the most visible place in his book. He may have recognized that Enoch’s associations with divinatory subjects (such as astronomy/astrology) brought him into the same sphere as Balaam, however differently the two carried out their functions.” VanderKam, Enoch: A Man for All Generations, 27.

6 VanderKam, Enoch and the Growth of an Apocalyptic Tradition, 118.

7 It is noteworthy that the culture of oneiromantic divination transcends the literary–historical boundaries of the Mesopotamian texts and the Hebrew Bible, representing an influential office of revelation in the pseudepigrapha and even in rabbinic writings. Indeed, in the Babylonian Talmud famous Tannaitic authorities sometimes appear as mantic oneirocritics: For example in b. Ber. 55b the following oneiromantic account can be found: “A certain woman came to Rabbi Eliezer and said to him: ‘I saw in a dream that the granary of my house came open in a crack.’ He answered; ‘You will conceive a son.’ She went away, and that is what happened. She dreamed again the same dream and told it to Rabbi Eliezer who gave the same interpretation, and that is what happened. She dreamed the same dream a third time and looked for Rabbi Eliezer. Not finding him, she said to his disciples: ‘I saw in a dream that the granary of my house came open in a crack.’ They answered her: ‘You will bury your husband.’ And that is what happened. Rabbi Eliezer, surprised by the lamentations, inquired what had gone wrong? His disciples told him what had happened. He cried out, ‘Wretched fools! You have killed that man. Is it not written: ‘As he interpreted to us, so it was?’ And Rabbi Yohannan concludes: ‘Every dream becomes valid only by its interpretation.’”

8 Moore, The Balaam Traditions: Their Character and Development, 43.

9 VanderKam, Enoch and the Growth of an Apocalyptic Tradition, 61; Moore, The Balaam Traditions: Their Character and Development, 44.

10 Haldar mentions the archeological discovery of the tablet in the form of liver, found at Mari, where the following text was inscribed: “in his dream I have seen ….” He also directs his attention to the fact that in Mesopotamian materials some dreams could be explained “in the cup of the seer.” Haldar, Associations of Cult Prophets, 7.

11 Haldar, Associations of Cult Prophets, 7.

12 VanderKam, Enoch and the Growth of an Apocalyptic Tradition, 60.

13 VanderKam, Enoch and the Growth of an Apocalyptic Tradition, 60.

14 Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 1.45; 2.94.

15 On the practice of incubation in Greco-Roman world, see: J. S. Hanson, “Dreams and Visions in the Graeco-Roman World and Early Christianity,” ANRW II/23.2 (1980) 1395–1427.

16 Collins, Seers, Sybils and Sages in Hellenistic-Roman Judaism, 46.

17 See A. Bedenbender, “Jewish Apocalypticism: A Child of Mantic Wisdom?” Henoch 24 (2002) 189–196, esp. 191–3.

18 Collins, Seers, Sybils and Sages in Hellenistic-Roman Judaism, 46.

19 Martin Hengel observes that Enoch “receives his wisdom through dreams (13.8; 14.1; 85.1) and visions (1.2; 37.1; 83.1f.; 93.1f.) – the two can hardly be separated….” M. Hengel, Judaism and Hellenism (2 vols.; Philadelphia: Fortress, 1974) 1.204.

20 VanderKam, Enoch and the Growth of an Apocalyptic Tradition, 134.

21 “I had lain down in the house of my grandfather Malalel, (when) I saw in a vision (how) heaven was thrown down and removed.…” “And again I looked with my eyes as I was sleeping, and I saw heaven above….” Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 2.192 and 196.

22 J. C. VanderKam, The Book of Jubilees (2 vols.; CSCO 510–11, Scriptores Aethiopici 87–88; Leuven: Peeters, 1989) 2.26–27.

23 Collins, “The Sage in Apocalyptic and Pseudepigraphic Literature,” 345.

24 Kvanvig, Roots of Apocalyptic, 149. Martin Hengel observes that in 1 Enoch “Enoch appears as the prototype of the pious wise man of the primal period…. A whole series of features of the Babylonian wise men of the primal period were transferred to his figure, which probably derives from the Babylonian primal king Enmeduranki.” Hengel, Judaism and Hellenism, 1. 204

25 Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 1.271; 2.187–88.

26 Cairo Genizah MS B Ben Sira 44:16.

27 VanderKam, Jubilees, 1.24; 2.25–26.

28 VanderKam, Jubilees, 2.27. The same motif of the omniscience of Enoch’s expertise is repeated in 2 Enoch 40.

29 Józef Milik first proposed that this expression might designate one of Enoch’s titles which he rendered as “wiser than all men.” Milik, The Books of Enoch, 262; Black, 1 Enoch, 283.

30 )#wn) Myk[xw] – [and the wis]est of men. (4Q212 2:23). García Martínez and Tigchelaar (eds.), The Dead Sea Scrolls Study Edition, 1.442–43.

31 VanderKam, Enoch: A Man for All Generations, 113.

32 Black, 1 Enoch, 84.

33 Thus, for example, Herman Ludin Jansen differentiates between the heavenly and terrestrial profiles of the seventh antediluvian patriarch and argues that in his terrestrial or earthly profile Enoch is portrayed in the roles of a sage and a prophet. Ludin Jansen, Die Henochgestalt, 13.

34 Kvanvig, Roots of Apocalyptic, 27.

35 Pierre Grelot observes that “Enoch is the originator of prophecy understood as revelation of divine secrets.” Grelot, “La légende d’Hénoch dans les apocryphes et dans la Bible: Origine et signification,” 15.

36 1 Enoch 16:3 “You were in heaven, but (its) secrets had not yet been revealed to you and a worthless mystery you knew.” Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 2.102–103. On the motif of the Watchers’ illicit instruction see: A. Y. Reed, What the Fallen Angels Taught: The Motif of Illicit Angelic Instruction and the Reception-History of 1 Enoch in Judaism and Christianity (Ph.D. Dissertation, Princeton University, 2002).

37 Collins, Seers, Sybils and Sages in Hellenistic-Roman Judaism, 49. In the same vein Christopher Rowland observes that “there does appear to be a contrast between the Watchers and Enoch. One of the great sins of Asael is that he has ‘revealed the eternal secrets which were in heaven, which men were striving to learn’ (1 Enoch 9.6). This charge seems a strange one in an apocalypse which sets out to do precisely that for which the angels were condemned. Indeed, in Jub 4:18ff. Enoch’s fame is based on the fact that he introduced many secrets, including astronomy (cf. 1 Enoch’s 8.3), which the angels are also said to have done. One can only assume that the major difference between Enoch and the angels is the fact that man receives the heavenly mysteries by means of revelation, whereas the angels are guilty of exposing the heavenly mysteries to man without God’s permission. Enoch reveals exactly what he is told to reveal, and, as a result, God only allows man to know sufficient for man’s well-being. The angels, however, usurp God’s right to reveal his mysteries and indulge in a profligate disclosure of the secrets of God.” C. Rowland, The Open Heaven: A Study of Apocalyptic in Judaism and Early Christianity (New York: Crossroad, 1982) 93–94.

38 Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 2.128.

39 P. Alexander “3 (Hebrew Apocalypse of) Enoch,” The Old Testament Pseudepigrapha (ed. J.H. Charlesworth; New York: Doubleday, 1985 [1983]) 1.264; Schäfer et al., Synopse, 8–9.

40 Cohen, Liturgy and Theurgy, 127.

41 Collins, “The Sage in Apocalyptic and Pseudepigraphic Literature,” 345.

42 Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 2.223.

43 See 1 Enoch 71:1–4: “And it came to pass after this that my spirit was carried off, and it went up into the heavens…. And the angel Michael, one of the archangels, took hold of me by my right hand, and raised me, and led me out to all the secrets of mercy and the secrets of righteousness. And he showed me all the secrets of the ends of heaven and all the storehouses of all the stars and the lights, from where they come out before the holy ones.” Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 2.165–6. See also 1 Enoch 40:2: “I looked, and on the four sides of the Lord of Spirits I saw four figures different from those who were standing; and … the angel who went with me … showed me all the secret things.” Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 2.127. Cf. 1 Enoch 41:1–3: “And after this I saw all the secrets of heaven, and how the kingdom is divided, and how the deeds of men are weighed in the balance…. And there my eyes saw the secrets of the flashes of lightning and of the thunder, and secrets of the winds, how they are distributed in order to blow over the earth, and the secrets of the clouds and of the dew.” Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 2.128–9. See also 1 Enoch 46:2: “And I asked one of the holy angels who went with me, and showed me all the secrets, about that Son of Man, who he was, and whence he was, (and) why he went with the Head of Days.” Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 2.131–2. Cf. 1 Enoch 68:1: “And after this my great-grandfather Enoch gave me the explanation of all the secrets in a book.” Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 2.158.

44 .

45 VanderKam, Enoch: A Man for All Generations, 11. On the etymology of Enoch’s name, see also Grelot, “La légende d’Hénoch,” 186; Kvanvig, Roots of Apocalyptic, 41–43.

46 In 1 Enoch 74:2, Enoch writes the instructions of the angel Uriel regarding the secrets of the heavenly bodies and their movements. Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 2.173. William Adler draws the reader’s attention to an interesting passage from M. Glycas which refers to Uriel’s instruction to Seth in a manner similar to Uriel’s revelation of the calendarical and astronomical secrets to Enoch in the Astronomical Book of 1 Enoch. “It is said that the angel stationed among the stars, that is the divine Uriel, descended to Seth and then to Enoch and taught them the distinctions between hours, months, seasons, and years.” W. Adler, Time Immemorial: Archaic History and Its Sources in Christian Chronography from Julius Africanus to George Syncellus (Dumbarton Oaks Studies 26; Washington: Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection, 1989) 105. For the Greek text, see Michaelis Glycae Annales (ed. I. Bekker; CSHB; Bonn: Weber, 1836) 228.

47 4Q203 8: “Copy of the seco[n]d tablet of [the] le[tter…] by the hand of Enoch, the distinguished scribe….” García Martínez and Tigchelaar (eds.), The Dead Sea Scrolls Study Edition, 1.411.

48 VanderKam, The Book of Jubilees, 2.25–6.

49 This tradition can be seen already in 2 Enoch 23:4–6, which depicts the angel Vereveil (Uriel) commanding Enoch to sit down: “‘You sit down; write everything….’ And Enoch said, ‘And I sat down for a second period of 30 days and 30 nights, and I wrote accurately.’” F. Andersen, “2 (Slavonic Apocalypse of) Enoch,” The Old Testament Pseudepigrapha (2 vols.; ed. J. H. Charlesworth; New York: Doubleday, 1985 [1983]) 1.141.

50 Targum Pseudo-Jonathan: Genesis (tr. M. Maher, M.S.C.; The Aramaic Bible 1B; Collegeville: The Liturgical Press, 1992) 36.

51 On the scribes and the scribal culture in Mesopotamian and Jewish environments, see M. Bar-Ilan, “Writing in Ancient Israel and Early Judaism: Scribes and Books in the Late Second Commonwealth and Rabbinic Period,” in: Mikra: Text, Translation, Reading and Interpretation of the Hebrew Bible in Ancient Judaism in Early Christianity (eds. M. J. Mulder and H. Sysling; CRINT 2.1; Philadelphia: Fortress, 1989) 21–38; J. Blenkinsopp, “The Sage, the Scribe, and Scribalism in the Chronicler’s Work,” in: The Sage in Israel and the Ancient Near East, 307–315; J. J. Collins, “The Sage in Apocalyptic and Pseudepigraphic Literature,” in: The Sage in Israel and the Ancient Near East, 343–354; P. R. Davies, Scribes and Schools: The Canonization of the Hebrew Scriptures (Louisville: Westminster, 1998) 74-88; L. R. Mack-Fisher, “The Scribe (and Sage) in the Royal Court at Ugarit,” in: The Sage in Israel and the Ancient Near East, 109–115; D. E. Orton, The Understanding Scribe: Matthew and the Apocalyptic Ideal (JSNTSup 25; Sheffield: JSOT Press, 1989); A. Saldarini, Pharisees, Scribes and Sadducees (Edinburgh: T&T. Clark, 1989); C. Schams, Jewish Scribes in the Second-Temple Period (JSOTSup 291; Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press, 1998); E. E. Urbach, The Halakha, Its Sources and Development (Yad La-Talmud; Jerusalem: Massada, 1960).

52 This aspect of the scribe as a translator looms large in 2 Enoch 23:2, where Vereveil (Uriel) teaches the elevated patriarch “every kind of language” (the longer recension) and, specifically, “the Hebrew language” (the shorter recension). See Andersen, “2 Enoch,” 140–41.

53 Kvanvig draws attention to the similar role of Ezra, whose title “scribe of the law” indicates the conflation of scribal and legal duties. Kvanvig, Roots of Apocalyptic, 101.

54 Collins, “The Sage in Apocalyptic and Pseudepigraphic Literature,” 344.

55 Both R. H. Charles and M. Black argue that the possible biblical parallel to Enoch’s role as the Scribe could be the passage from Ezekiel 9, which depicts a man clad in white linen with an ink-horn by his side. Charles, The Book of Enoch, 28; Black, 1 Enoch, 143.

56 In 1 Enoch 89:62 the scribal function is assigned to Michael.

57 A number of scholars traced the role of Enoch as a celestial scribe back to the Mesopotamian lore about the scribe Nabu. See: H. Gunkel, “Der Schreiberengel Nabû im A. T. und in Judentum,” ARW 1 (1989) 294–300; Zimmern, Die Keilinschriften und das Alte Testament, 400–6; Charles, The Book of Enoch, 28; Black, 1 Enoch, 143. VanderKam criticizes this parallel pointing out that “nothing that is said in either of the compositions [the Astronomical Book and the Book of the Watchers] about his [Enoch] writing corresponds in distinctive ways with the traditions about Nabu, the scribe of the gods.” VanderKam, Enoch and the Growth of an Apocalyptic Tradition, 133.

58 VanderKam, Enoch and the Growth of an Apocalyptic Tradition, 104.

59 See also 1 Enoch 82:1: “And now, my son Methuselah, all these things I recount to you and write down for you; I have revealed everything to you and have given you books from the hand of your father, that you may pass (them) on to the generations of eternity.” Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 2.187.

60 Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 2.173.

61 For example, in 2 Enoch, Vereveil (Uriel) is depicted as a scribe. The exchange in the roles between Enoch and Uriel is intriguing and goes both ways. H. Kvanvig observes that in Pseudo-Eupolemus “Enoch was placed into the same position as Uriel in the Astronomical Book.” Kvanvig, 239.

62 Milik, The Books of Enoch, 191. George Nickelsburg proposes that the title can be related to the Aramaic )+#wq yd rps. G. W. E. Nickelsburg, 1 Enoch I: A Commentary on the Book of 1 Enoch, Chapters 1–36; 81–108 (Hermeneia; Minneapolis: Fortress, 2001) 65.

63 It is significant that Enoch’s scribal titles are used by various parties in the Enochic materials. He is recognized with these titles by various subjects including the Watchers (12:4) and God himself (15:1), who like to address the patriarch by referring to his scribal office. In 12:3 the scribal office also becomes the patriarch’s self-definition: “me, Enoch the scribe.”

64 In Codex Panopolitanus Enoch is designated as grammateu_j th~j dikaiosu&nhj.

65 Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 1.41; 2.92.

66 Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 2.96.

67 Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 2.100.

68 Schams’ idea that here we deal with one of the composite titles which include several roles of the main character appears to be plausible.

69 C. Schams, Jewish Scribes in the Second-Temple Period (JSOTSup 291; Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press, 1998) 94.

70 Schams, Jewish Scribes in the Second-Temple Period, 94.

71 E. P. Sanders, “Testament of Abraham,” The Old Testament Pseudepigrapha (ed. J.H. Charlesworth; New York: Doubleday, 1985 [1983]) 1.900.

72 Milik, The Books of Enoch, 262.

73 Nickelsburg, 1 Enoch 1, 65.

74 Milik, The Books of Enoch, 260–62 and 305; F. García Martínez and E. J. C. Tigchelaar (eds.), The Dead Sea Scrolls Study Edition, 1.410–411; 2.1062–63. John Reeves translates the title as “the scribe set apart,” a rendering which underlines Enoch’s separation from human society. Reeves, Jewish Lore, 77. Loren Stuckenbruck highlights another aspect of the title, namely its possible connection with r#p. He argues that in view of this connection, the honorific can be translated as “the scribe of interpretation.” Stuckenbruck, The Book of Giants, 117–18.

75 W. B. Henning, “The Book of the Giants,” BSOAS 11 (1943–46) 52–74; P. O. Skjærvø, “Iranian Epic and the Manichean Book of Giants. Irano-Manichaica III,” Acta Orientalia Academiae Scientiarum Hungaricae XLVIII (1–2) (1995) 187–223; W. Sundermann, “Ein weiteres Fragment aus Manis Gigantenbuch,” Hommages et opera minora 9: Orientalia J. Duchesne-Guillemin emerito oblata (Acta Iranica, 23/Second Series 9; Leiden: Brill, 1984) 491–505.

76 This study uses the Hebrew texts and the English translation of the Midrash published in Milik, The Books of Enoch, 321–328.

77 F. García Martínez and E. J. C. Tigchelaar (eds.), The Dead Sea Scrolls Study Edition, 1.410–411.

78 F. García Martínez and E. J. C. Tigchelaar (eds.), The Dead Sea Scrolls Study Edition, 2.1062–63.

79 Milik, The Books of Enoch, 262.

80 See Black, 1 Enoch, 283. Although some scholars do not support Black’s position, discussion of his hypothesis is useful since it is related to the current ongoing discussion of the titles.

81 On the Ethiopic manuscript traditions of 1 Enoch see Black, 1 Enoch, 2–3; E. J. C. Tigchelaar, Prophets of Old and the Day of the End (OTS 35; Leiden: Brill, 1996) 144–5.

82 M. Black’s translation of 1 Enoch 92 renders the context of the usage of the title as follows: “[Epistle of Enoch which] he wrote and gave to his son Methuselah. Enoch, skilled scribe and wisest of men, and the chosen of the sons of men and judge of all the earth, to all my children and to later generations, to all dwellers on earth who observe uprightness and peace.” Black, 1 Enoch, 84. In Knibb’s translation, which relies on Rylands Eth. MS 23, this passage has the following form: “Written by Enoch the scribe – this complete wisdom teaching, praised by all men and a judge of the whole earth – for all my sons who dwell upon the earth and for the last generations who will practice uprightness and peace.” Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 2.222.

83 Ezra 7:6; Ps 45(44):2.

84 Schams, Jewish Scribes in the Second-Temple Period, 95.

85 Collins, Seers, Sybils and Sages in Hellenistic-Roman Judaism, 49.

86 Collins, “The Sage in Apocalyptic and Pseudepigraphic Literature,” 346.

87 Collins, “The Sage in Apocalyptic and Pseudepigraphic Literature,” 346; idem, Seers, Sybils and Sages in Hellenistic-Roman Judaism, 49.

88 Ludin Jansen notes that Enoch serves as a mediator between God and the world. Ludin Jansen, Die Henochgestalt, 13. This present study will demonstrate that this Enochic role lays the foundation for the future role of Metatron as the Prince of the World.

89 2 Enoch 36:3 (the longer recension): “you will be for me a witness of the judgment of the great age.” Andersen, “2 Enoch,” 161.

90 Alexander, “3 Enoch,” 264.

91 Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 2.187.

92 Collins’ research highlights the importance of Enmeduranki’s mediating functions for the development of Enoch’s role as a mediator. He points out that in the Mesopotamian tradition Enmeduranki, who receives the tablet and the instructions about the divinatory knowledge in the assembly of the gods, later transmits this knowledge to the  guild. Collins observes that “Enoch too is taken into the heavenly council and shown the tablets of heaven. While the Jewish text does not pick up the Babylonian methods of divination, Enoch corresponds to Enmeduranki insofar as he is a primeval archetypal mediator of revelation.” Collins, “The Sage in Apocalyptic and Pseudepigraphic Literature,” 346.

93 Compare with the Enmeduranki tradition: “The learned savant, who guards the secrets of the great gods, will bind his son whom he loves with an oath before Šamaš and Adad by tablet and stylus and will instruct him.”

94 Andersen, “2 Enoch,” 156.

95 VanderKam, Enoch and the Growth of an Apocalyptic Tradition, 104.

96 On Metatron’s role as a teacher in rabbinic literature, see Cohen, Liturgy and Theurgy, 126ff.

97 See also Enoch’s designation as the “teacher of heaven and earth” in the Testament of Abraham 11.

98 F. García Martínez and E. J. C. Tigchelaar (eds.), The Dead Sea Scrolls Study Edition, 1.31. The similar tradition in 1 Enoch 106:8 reads, “And when Methuselah heard the words of his son, he came to me [Enoch] at the ends of the earth, for he had heard that I was there.” Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 2.245.

99 F. García Martínez and E. J. C. Tigchelaar (eds.), The Dead Sea Scrolls Study Edition, 1.31.

100 C. Holladay, Fragments from Hellenistic Jewish Authors (Chico, Calif.: Scholar Press, 1983) I.175.

101 Andersen, “2 Enoch,” 162.

102 Martin Hengel stresses the multifaceted nature of the patriarch’s duties in the economy of the divine judgment. Hengel, Judaism and Hellenism, 1. 204.

103 VanderKam, The Book of Jubilees, 2.27–28.

104 See 4Q203 8.

105 Andersen, “2 Enoch,” 130–33.

106 VanderKam, Enoch and the Growth of an Apocalyptic Tradition, 131.

107 Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 2.100.

108 VanderKam, Enoch and the Growth of an Apocalyptic Tradition, 132.

109 Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 2.92.

110 VanderKam, Enoch: A Man for All Generations, 28.

111 Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 2.93.

112 VanderKam, Enoch: A Man for All Generations, 44.

113 Collins, “The Sage in Apocalyptic and Pseudepigraphic Literature,” 344.

114 Andersen, “2 Enoch,” 161.

115 Haldar, Associations of Cult Prophets, 3.

116 See also 4Q227 2 (Pseudo-Jubilees): “[ … E]noch after taught him [ ] six jubilees of years [the ea]rth among the sons of mankind. And he testified against all of them. [ ] and also against the Watchers. And he wrote all the [ ] sky and the path of their host and the [mon]ths [s]o that the ri[ghteous] should not err.” VanderKam, Enoch: A Man for All Generations, 128.

117 For a through analysis of this role in the Book of Jubilees, see Nickelsburg, 1 Enoch 1, 75–76.

118 VanderKam, Jubilees, 2.26–27.

119 In 4Q530 2 the information about Enoch’s roles as the scribe of distinction and a dream interpreter is found in the scene of the divine judgment in which “[book]s were opened and the sentence was proclaimed. And the sentence [… in a book] was [wri]tten, and recorded in an inscription […] for all the living and the flesh and upon….” F. García Martínez and E. J. C. Tigchelaar (eds.), The Dead Sea Scrolls Study Edition, 2.1065.

120 VanderKam, Jubilees, 2.28.

121 Jub 4:22. VanderKam, Jubilees, 2.27–28.

122 In the Similitudes Enoch appears to be identified with the messianic figure enthroned in heaven to whom all judgment is deferred. It is suggestive that in one of the Ethiopic witneses of 1 Enoch 92:1, the patriarch is labeled as “the praiseworthy judge of all the earth.”, The Books of Enoch, 263. Black observes that “the epithet ‘judge’ as applied to Enoch would anticipate the role of the Son of Man at 69.27.” Black, 1 Enoch, 283.

123 VanderKam defines Enoch’s role in the Testament of Abraham as “the prosecuting attorney.” VanderKam, Enoch: A Man for All Generations, 157.

124 Sanders, “Testament of Abraham,”1.900.

125 On cosmological space as a place for punishment see P. M. Venter, “Die funksie van ruimte in die reisverhale in 1 Henog 12–36,” Hervormde Teologiese Studies 56 (2000) 38–62.

126 Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 2.107–8.

127 M. Himmelfarb, “The Temple and the Garden of Eden in Ezekiel, the Book of the Watchers, and the Wisdom of ben Sira,” in: Sacred Places and Profane Spaces: Essays in the Geographics of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam (eds. J. Scott and P. Simpson–Housley; New York: Greenwood Press, 1991) 63–78; idem, “Apocalyptic Ascent and the Heavenly Temple,” in: Society of Biblical Literature 1987 Seminar Papers (SBLSP 26; Atlanta, GA: Scholars Press, 1987) 210–217. Martha Himmelfarb’s research draws on the previous publications of Johann Maier and George Nickelsburg. See: J. Maier, “Das Gefährdungsmotiv bei der Himmelsreise in der jüdischen Apocalyptik und ‘Gnosis,’” Kairos 5(1) 1963 18–40, esp. 23; idem, Vom Kultus zur Gnosis, 127–8; G. W. E. Nickelsburg, “Enoch, Levi, and Peter: Recipients of Revelation in Upper Galilee,” JBL 100 (1981) 575–600, esp. 576–82. See also Kvanvig, Roots of Apocalyptic, 101–102; Halperin, The Faces of the Chariot, 81.

128 Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 1.50–52; 2.98–99.

129 Himmelfarb, “Apocalyptic Ascent and the Heavenly Temple,” 210.

130 Himmelfarb, “Apocalyptic Ascent and the Heavenly Temple,” 211.

131 R. J. Clifford, The Cosmic Mountain in Canaan and the Old Testament (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1972) 177–80.

132 Himmelfarb, “The Temple and the Garden of Eden,” 68.

133 For an extensive discussion of this subject, see Gemeinde ohne Tempel/Community without Temple: Zur Substituierung und Transformation des Jerusalemer Tempels und seines Kults im Alten Testament, antiken Judentum und frühen Christentum (eds. B. Ego et al.; WUNT 118; Tübingen: Mohr/Siebeck, 1999); R. Elior, “From Earthly Temple to Heavenly Shrines: Prayer and Sacred Song in the Hekhalot Literature and Its Relation to Temple Traditions,” JSQ 4 (1997) 217–67; idem, “The Priestly Nature of the Mystical Heritage in Heykalot Literature,” in: Expérience et écriture mystiques dans les religions du livre: Actes d’un colloque international tenu par le Centre d’études juives Université de Paris IV-Sorbonne 1994 (eds. R. B. Fenton and R. Goetschel; EJM 22; Leiden: Brill, 2000) 41–54.

134 David Suter’s and George Nickelsburg’s earlier research pointed to the possibility that the fall of the Watchers in the Book of the Watchers can be interpreted as a typological reference to the exogamy of priests who, similar to the fallen angels, violated the boundaries of the cultic purity by marrying non-Israelite women. For the detailed discussion of the subject, see D. Suter, “Fallen Angel, Fallen Priest: The Problem of Family Purity in 1 Enoch,” HUCA 50 (1979) 115–35. Nickelsburg, “Enoch, Levi, and Peter: Recipients of Revelation in Upper Galilee.” See also C. N. T. Fletcher-Louis, All the Glory of Adam: Liturgical Anthropology in the Dead Sea Scrolls (STDJ 42; Leiden: Brill, 2002) 22.

135 Himmelfarb, “Apocalyptic Ascent,” 211.

136 David Halperin’s research also stresses the “apocalyptic” priestly function of Enoch in the Book of the Watchers. He observes that “Daniel and Enoch share an image, perhaps drawn from the hymnic tradition of merkabah exegesis (think of the Angelic liturgy), of God surrounded by multitudes of angels. But, in the Holy of Holies, God sits alone….The angels, barred from the inner house, are the priests of Enoch’s heavenly Temple. The high priest must be Enoch himself, who appears in the celestial Holy of Holies to procure forgiveness for holy beings.” Halperin, Faces of the Chariot, 81–2.

137 Himmelfarb, “Apocalyptic Ascent,” 213.

138 Enoch’s sacerdotal duties in the Book of the Watchers also involve his intercession and transmission of the judgment against Asael. Crispin Fletcher-Louis observes that “Enoch’s intercession and transmission of the judgment against Asael is thoroughly priestly and related closely to that of the high priest on the Day of Atonement whose ministry involves the sending of a scapegoat into the wilderness to Azazel (Lev 16).” Fletcher-Louis, All the Glory of Adam, 40.

139 Himmelfarb, “Apocalyptic Ascent,” 212.

140 G. W. E. Nickelsburg, “Enoch, Levi, and Peter: Recipients of Revelation in Upper Galilee,” JBL 100 (1981) 575–600, esp. 579.

141 Nickelsburg, “Enoch, Levi, and Peter: Recipients of Revelation in Upper Galilee,” 580.

142 Fletcher-Louis stresses that the language of Enoch’s approach (“to draw near”) is cultic. Fletcher-Louis, All the Glory of Adam, 23.

143 Nickelsburg, “Enoch, Levi, and Peter: Recipients of Revelation in Upper Galilee,” 580.

144 Nickelsburg, “Enoch, Levi, and Peter: Recipients of Revelation in Upper Galilee,” 580–81.

145 Knibb. The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 1.294; 2.198.

146 1 Enoch 89:50: “And that house became large and broad, and for those sheep a high tower was built on that house for the Lord of the sheep; and that house was low, but the tower was raised up and high; and the Lord of the sheep stood on that tower, and they spread a full table before him.” Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 208; 1 Enoch 89:73: “And they began again to build, as before, and they raised up that tower, and it was called the high tower; and they began again to place a table before the tower, but all the bread on it (was) unclean and was not pure.” Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 2.211.

147 VanderKam, Enoch: A Man for All Generations, 117.

148 VanderKam, Enoch: A Man for All Generations, 117.

149 For Enoch’s place in the heavenly Paradise, see: Testament of Benjamin 10:6, Apocalypse of Paul 20, Clementine Recognitions 1:52, Acts of Pilate 25, and the Ascension of Isaiah 9:6. C. Rowland, “Enoch,” in: Dictionary of Deities and Demons in the Bible (eds. K. van der Toorn et al; Leiden: Brill, 1999) 302.

150 VanderKam, The Book of Jubilees, 2.28.

151 VanderKam argues that there are other indications that in the Book of Jubilees Eden was understood as a sanctuary. As an example, he points to Jub 3:9–14, which “derives the law from Lev 11 regarding when women who have given birth may enter the sanctuary from the two times when Adam and Eve, respectively, went into the garden.” VanderKam, Enoch: A Man for All Generation, 117.

152 VanderKam, The Book of Jubilees, 2.28.

153 VanderKam, Enoch: A Man for All Generations, 117.

154 Fletcher-Louis notes that in Jubilees 4:7, “the patriarch’s observation of the heavens and their order so that the sons of man might know the (appointed) times of the year according to their order, with respect to each of their months…is knowledge of a thoroughly priestly and cultic nature.” Fletcher-Louis, All the Glory of Adam, 24.

155 Scholars point to the possible polemical nature of the patriarch’s priestly role. Gabriele Boccaccini observes that “Enochians completely ignore the Mosaic torah and the Jerusalem Temple, that is, the two tenets of the order of the universe.” In his opinion, “the attribution to Enoch of priestly characteristics suggests the existence of a pure predeluvian, and pre-fall, priesthood and disrupts the foundation of the Zadokite priesthood, which claimed its origin in Aaron at the time of the exodus, in an age that, for the Enochians, was already corrupted after the angelic sin and the flood.” G. Boccaccini, Beyond the Essene Hypothesis: The Parting of the Ways between Qumran and Enochic Judaism (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1998) 74.

156 VanderKam, Enoch: A Man for All Generations, 117.

157 Enoch’s role as a priest is also attested in several Christian sources, including Apostolic Constitutions 8:5, the Cave of Treasures, and the Book of Rolls. C. Rowland, “Enoch,” in: Dictionary of Deities and Demons in the Bible (eds. K. van der Toorn et al; Leiden: Brill, 1999) 302.

158 Alexander, From Son of Adam, 107

159 A passage from Sefer Hekhalot reads: “Metatron is the Prince over all princes, and stands before him who is exalted above all gods. He goes beneath the throne of glory, where he has a great heavenly tabernacle of light, and brings out the deafening fire, and puts it in the ears of the holy creatures, so that they should not hear the sound of the utterance that issues from the mouth of the Almighty.” Alexander, “3 Enoch,” 303.

160 L. H. Schiffman and M. D. Swartz, Hebrew and Aramaic Incantation Texts from the Cairo Genizah (Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press, 1992) 145.

161 Moore, The Balaam Traditions: Their Character and Development, 43.

162 J. VanderKam, “Righteous One, Messiah, Chosen One, and Son of Man in 1 Enoch 37–71,” in: The Messiah: Developments in Earliest Judaism and Christianity. The First Princeton Symposium on Judaism and Christian Origins (eds. J. H. Charlesworth et al.; Minneapolis: Fortress, 1992) 169–70. My presentation of the titles from the Book of the Similitudes is based on the positions reflected in James VanderKam’s article. See also M. Black, “The Strange Visions of Enoch,” Bible Review 3 (1987) 20–23; idem, “The Messianism of the Parables of Enoch: Their Date and Contribution to Christological Origins,” in: The Messiah: Developments in Earliest Judaism and Christianity (ed. J. Charlesworth et al.; Minneapolis: Fortress, 1992) 145–68; J. Davila, “Of Methodology, Monotheism and Metatron,” The Jewish Roots of Christological Monotheism. Papers from the St. Andrews Conference on the Historical Origins of the Worship of Jesus (eds. C. C. Newman, J. R. Davila, G. S. Lewis; JSJSup 63; Leiden: Brill, 1999) 9–12.

163 VanderKam, “Righteous One, Messiah, Chosen One, and Son of Man in 1 Enoch 37–71,” 170–171.

164 Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 1.146; 2.138.

165 VanderKam, Enoch: A Man for All Generations, 136.

166 VanderKam, “Righteous One, Messiah, Chosen One, and Son of Man in 1 Enoch 37–71,” 170.

167 Scholars have previously questioned whether these designations belong to the original layer of the texts. See especially E. Sjöberg, Der Menschensohn im äthiopischen Henochbuch (Skrifter Utgivna av kungl. Humanistiska Vetenskapssamfundet I Lund 41; Lund, 1946) 140–41; J. Theisohn, Der auserwählte Richter (SUNT 12; Göttingen, 1975) 55–56.

168 Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 2.134.

169 VanderKam, “Righteous One, Messiah, Chosen One, and Son of Man in 1 Enoch 37–71,” 170. James Davila observes that “the language of the passage echoes Psalm 2:2 and thus evokes the messianic traditions drawn in the Second Temple period out of the royal psalms, despite the anachronism of associating ideas with the antediluvian patriarch Enoch.” Davila, “Of Methodology, Monotheism and Metatron,” 10.

170 Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 2.136.

171 The title occurs in 1 Enoch 40:5; 45:3, 4; 49:2, 4; 51:3, 5; 52:6, 9; 53:6; 55:4; 61:5, 8, 10; 62:1.

172 Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 1.126–27; 2.131.

173 Larry Hurtado notes that the “chosen one” seems “to act as judge on God’s behalf (‘in the name of the Lord of Spirits,’ e.g., 1 Enoch 55:4) and in this capacity sits upon a throne that is closely linked with God: ‘On that day the Chosen One will sit on the throne of Glory’ (45:3; see also 51:3; 55:4; 61:8; 62:2,3,5–6; 70:27). The meaning of this is not that the figure rivals God or becomes a second god but rather that he is seen as performing the eschatological functions associated with God and is therefore God’s chief agent, linked with God’s work to a specially intense degree.” Hurtado, One God, One Lord, 53.

174 The passage found in 1 Enoch 51:3 again stresses the motif of the throne in connection with this title: “And in those days the Chosen One will sit on his throne, and all the secrets of wisdom will flow out from the counsel of his mouth, for the Lord of Spirits has appointed him and glorified him.” Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 135–6.

175 Suter, Tradition and Composition, 26–27; VanderKam, Enoch: A Man for All Generations, 138.

176 VanderKam, Enoch: A Man for All Generations, 135.

177 David Suter notes the interplay of the traditions about the chosen one and the son of man in chapter 62 of the Similitudes. He observes that this “chapter begins with the Elect one being seated on the throne of his glory by the Lord of Spirits to judge the kings and mighty of the earth; however, in the midst of the passage, at 1 En. 62:5, the poet changes from ‘the Elect One’ to ‘that Son of Man.’” Suter, Tradition and Composition, 26.

178 Suter observes that “in the parables of Enoch, ‘that Son of Man’ appears largely in the context of an exegetical tradition based on Dan. 7:9–14 and derives his judicial function from ‘the Elect one’ as this tradition is used to amplify the latter title.” Suter, Tradition and Composition, 26

179 Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 1.128–9; 2.131–2.

180 Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 1.134; 2.133–34.

181 VanderKam, Enoch: A Man for All Generations, 139.

182 VanderKam, Enoch: A Man for All Generations, 139.

183 G. Nickelsburg, “Son of Man,” ABD 6.138.

184 M. D. Hooker, The Son of Man in Mark (London: S.P.C.K., 1967) 34–37; Theisohn, Der auserwählte Richter, 47–49; VanderKam, “Righteous One, Messiah, Chosen One, and Son of Man in 1 Enoch 37–71,” 175.

185 Morna Hooker observes that “two sources can be distinguished, one speaking of the ‘Son of Man’ and the other of the “Elect One,” and in spite of the fact that scholars have mostly followed them in regarding the material in its present form as a mosaic, discussion of the figure of the ‘Son of Man’ has not generally drawn any distinction between these two titles, but has regarded passages referring to the ‘Elect One’ and those which speak of the ‘Son of Man’ as descriptive of the same figure.” Hooker, The Son of Man in Mark, 34.

186 Scholars previously observed the significance of this identification for future Metatron developments. Alan Segal points out that “this is an extraordinarily important event, as it underlines the importance of mystic transformation between the adept and the angelic vice-regent of God.” A. Segal, “The Risen Christ and the Angelic Mediator Figures in Light of Qumran,” in: Jesus and the Dead Sea Scrolls (ed. J. Charlesworth; New York: Doubleday, 1992) 305.

187 VanderKam, Enoch: A Man for All Generations, 140; G. Nickelsburg, “Son of Man,” ABD 6.138.

188 James VanderKam stresses that “the status of chs. 70–71 is … absolutely crucial to one’s understanding of the phrase ‘son of man’ and eventually of all the other epithets.” VanderKam, “Righteous One, Messiah, Chosen One, and Son of Man in 1 Enoch 37–71,” 177.

189 George Nickelsburg observes that “the text is probably an addition to an earlier form of the Book of Parables, but an addition with important parallels.” G. Nickelsburg, “Son of Man,” ABD 6.140.

190 J. Collins, “Heavenly Representative: The ‘Son of Man’ in the Similitudes of Enoch,’ in: Ideal Figures in Ancient Judaism (eds. G.W.E. Nickelsburg and J.J. Collins; SCS 12; Chico, Calif.: Scholars, 1980) 122–24, esp. 122.

191 See J. VanderKam, “Righteous One, Messiah, Chosen One, and Son of Man in 1 Enoch 37–71,” 182–3; M. Knibb, “Messianism in the Pseudepigrapha in the Light of the Scrolls,” DSD 2 (1995) 177–80; Fossum, The Image of the Invisible God, 144–5; C. H. T. Fletcher-Louis, Luke-Acts: Angels, Christology and Soteriology (WUNT 2/94; Tübingen: Mohr/Siebeck, 1997) 151.

192 It is important to note that in the Similitudes, the son of man is depicted as seated on the throne of glory. See 1 Enoch 62:5, 1 Enoch 69:29. Jarl Fossum observes that “in the ‘Similitudes’ the ‘Elect One’ or ‘Son of Man’ who is identified as the patriarch Enoch, is enthroned upon the ‘throne of glory.’ If ‘glory’ does not qualify the throne but its occupant, Enoch is actually identified with the Glory of God.” Fossum further concludes that “…the ‘Similitudes of Enoch’ present an early parallel to the targumic description of Jacob being seated upon the ‘throne of glory.’” Fossum, The Image of the Invisible God, 145.

193 VanderKam, “Righteous One, Messiah, Chosen One, and Son of Man in 1 Enoch 37–71,” 182–3.

194 One must add that the later Hekhalot titles and offices of Enoch-Metatron also appear to maintain a certain independence from the imagery of the exalted figures found in the Bible. Peter Schäfer observes that “the Hekhalot literature appears to be basically independent of the Bible. To formulate it even more sharply: it appears to be autonomous.” Schäfer, “The Aim and Purpose of Early Jewish Mysticism. Gershom Scholem Reconsidered,” 14.

195 David Suter argues that Enoch-Metatron’s identification with “an elect one” (rwxb) in Synopse §9 (3 Enoch 6:3) might be related to his title in the Similitudes. He observes that “while it does not have the messianic sense that it does in the Parables of Enoch, there is a remote possibility of a connection between its use in the Parables as the major messianic title and in 3 En. 6:3. Greenfield does not specifically relate the identification of Enoch as the Son of Man in the Parables to Enoch/Metatron in 3 Enoch, but he may have had it in mind.” Suter, Tradition and Composition, 16. H. Odeberg observes that “many of the features of the Elect One and the Son of Man in 1 Enoch are transferred to Metatron in 3 Enoch. The differences are, however, greater than the resemblances.” Odeberg, 3 Enoch, 1.47. On the connections between the Similitudes and 3 Enoch, see also M. Black, “Eschatology of the Similitudes of Enoch,” JTS (1952) 1–10, esp. 6–7.

196 J. R. Davila, “Melchizedek, The ‘Youth,’ and Jesus,” in: The Dead Sea Scrolls as Background to Postbiblical Judaism and Early Christianity: Papers from an International Conference at St. Andrews in 2001 (ed. J. R. Davila; STDJ 46; Leiden: Brill, 2003) 264. James Davila observes that “in 3 Enoch – which has a close relationship of some sort with the Similitudes, whether literary, oral, or both – Enoch’s role changes once again. His titles in the Similitudes – Son of Man, Messiah, Righteous One, Chosen – are dropped almost entirely (only the last is applied to him once).” Davila, “Melchizedek, The ‘Youth,’ and Jesus,” 264.

Andrei Orlov
Kelly Chair in Theology and Professor of Judaism and Christianity in Antiquity at Marquette University.