The Book of Enoch was read and revered across the spectrum of Second Temple Judaism–those forms of Judaism that thrived in the Intertestamental period (ca. 500 B.C. to 100 A. D.). The book is more properly referred to as 1 Enoch in order to distinguish it from other books that bore the name Enoch which were composed later than this period (e.g., 2 Enoch, 3 Enoch). Though 1 Enoch was and is not considered canonical Scripture by the majority of Jewish and Christian authorities in antiquity, the book had a very wide readership, including the authors of New Testament books. This fact is well known to scholars who work in the original languages of both the New Testament and 1 Enoch. The content of 1 Enoch can be found in a number of passages in the New Testament as well as certain of its theological conceptions. Though the scholarly literature on 1 Enoch is plentiful, no commentary for the interested lay person exists–until now.
A Companion to the Book of Enoch: A Reader’s Commentary, Volume 1: The Book of the Watchers (1 Enoch 1-36) was written to fill this void and help students of the Bible understand and appreciate this important and influential ancient book. This reader’s commentary; does not require original language facility on the part of its user. Rather, the purpose of a Reader’s Commentary is to help readers of 1 Enoch comprehend what the book’s content with greater insight and clarity. Consequently, this Reader’s Commentary on 1 Enoch is not written for scholars. Anyone who has decided to devote the time to reading 1 Enoch, perhaps for the first time, will find this resource eminently useful. A Companion to the Book of Enoch: A Reader’s Commentary is based on the translation of 1 Enoch by R. H. Charles (1917). Important original language insights and differences in manuscripts of 1 Enoch are noted and explained as are theological concepts.