Some maintain that Jude quotes from the apocryphal book of Enoch. Often, this is put forward as a statement of fact in order to move forward to the much “larger” discussions regarding the meaning of extra-Biblical quotes, their place in Scripture, and the question of their inspiration.
The book of Enoch is part of what’s known as the Apocrypha which is a collection of ancient writings providing commentary on Biblical events – some even credited as being authored by Bible characters. There is also a subset called the “Biblical apocrypha” — apocryphal writings still included in some denomination’s Bibles today, even if under a “special” designation.
These works, including the book of Enoch, are generally considered to be uninspired. So did Jude quote from the book of Enoch in his New Testament letter?
The word’s origin is the Medieval Latin adjective apocryphus, “secret, or non-canonical”, from the Greek adjective ἀπόκρυφος (apokryphos), “obscure”, from the verb ἀποκρύπτειν (apokryptein), “to hide away”.
HowScriptureanswers "Did Jude quote from the book of Enoch?"
Jude did not quote the book of Enoch1, but rather attributes the quote to Enoch, a specific individual we know that lived before Noah2.
What Jude does do is he amplifies Enoch, the man. We know he was righteous all his days2,3, but now we know he was also a prophet of God (or spokesman for God, or speaking God’s literal words). As so many other New Testament/inspired writers do, Jude applies and defines a prophet’s prophecy in the context of the New Testament gospel message. A divine and inspired interpretation of a prophetic saying. In other words, no guesswork is required by us!
The fact that this prophesy isn’t recorded elsewhere in Scripture isn’t relevant (or without precedent – John 7:38). But rather, just as a true prophet would speak, these words are completely consistent with other statements about God’s judgement on false teachers.
Now Enoch, the seventh in descent beginning with Adam, even prophesied of them, saying, “Look! The Lord is coming with thousands and thousands of his holy ones, to execute judgment on all and to convict all the ungodly of all their deeds of ungodliness that they have committed in such an ungodly way, and of all the harsh things that ungodly sinners have spoken against him.”
Enoch, the seventh generation from Adam, prophesied about them saying, “Look! The Lord is coming with thousands and thousands of his holy ones, to execute judgment on all and to convict all the ungodly of all their deeds of ungodliness that they have committed in such an ungodly way, and of all the harsh things that ungodly sinners have spoken against him.”
Jude is writing a brief, but stern letter of warning “to those who are called” (vs 1) to “contend for the faith” (vs 3) and remaining obedient. He also warns about false teachers (vs 4), but continues to give several examples from the Old Testament of those that did not remain faithful (for various reasons) and were condemned as a result.
It is these false teachers and generally those “following their own sinful desires” (vs 16) that Jude says Enoch was prophesying about in his statement of judgment for their “deeds of ungodliness” (vs 15).
How does it apply here?
Jude makes no reference to a “book of Enoch” but rather a specific individual, known in Scripture.
When Enoch had lived 65 years, he fathered Methuselah. Enoch walked with God after he fathered Methuselah 300 years and had other sons and daughters. Thus all the days of Enoch were 365 years. Enoch walked with God, and he was not, for God took him.
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