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[THIS new fragment of early literature came to light through certain manuscripts which were recently found in Russia and Servia and so far as is yet known has been preserved only in Slavonic. Little is known of its origin except that in its present form it was written somewhere about the beginning of the Christian era. Its final editor was a Greek and the place of its composition Egypt. Its value lies in the unquestioned influence which it has exerted on the writers of the New Testament. Some of the dark passages of the latter being all but inexplicable without its aid. Although the very knowledge that such a book ever existed was lost for probably 1200 years, it nevertheless was much used by both Christian and heretic in the early centuries and forms a most valuable document in any study of the forms of early Christianity. The writing appeals to the reader who thrills to lend wings to his thoughts and fly to mystical realms. Here is a strange dramatization of eternity--with views on Creation, Anthropology, and Ethics. As the world was made in six days, so its history would be accomplished in 6,000 years (or 6,000,000 years), and this would be followed by 1,000 years of rest (possibly when the balance of conflicting moral forces has been struck and human life has reached the ideal state). At its close would begin the 8th Eternal Day, when time should be no more.]

(William Wake and Solomon Caesar Malan version)

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THERE was a wise man, a great artificer, and the Lord conceived love for him and received him, that he should behold the uppermost dwellings and be an eye-witness of the wise and great and inconceivable and immutable realm of God Almighty, of the very wonderful and glorious and bright and many-eyed station of the Lord's servants, and of the inaccessible throne of the Lord, and of the degrees and manifestations of the incorporeal hosts, and of the ineffable ministration of the multitude of the elements, and of the various apparition and inexpressible singing of the host of Cherubim, and of the boundless light.
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At that time, he said, when my 165th year was completed, I begat my son Mathusal.
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After this too I lived two hundred years and completed of all the years of my life three hundred and sixty-five years.
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On the first day of the first month I was in my house alone and was resting on my couch and slept.
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And when I was asleep, great distress came up into my heart, and I was weeping with my eyes in sleep, and I could not understand what this distress was, or what would happen to me.
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And there appeared to me two men, exceeding big, so that I never saw such on earth; their faces were shining like the sun, their eyes too were like a burning light, and from their lips was fire coming forth with clothing and singing of various kinds in appearance purple, their wings were brighter than gold, their hands whiter than snow.
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They were standing at the head of my couch and began to call me by my name.
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And I arose from my sleep and saw clearly those two men standing in front of me.
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And I saluted them and was seized with fear and the appearance of my face was changed from terror, and those men said to me:
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'Have courage, Enoch, do mot fear; the eternal God sent us to thee, and lo! thou shalt to-day ascend with us into heaven, and thou shalt tell thy sons and all thy household all that they shall do without thee on earth in thy house, and let no one seek thee till the Lord return thee to them.
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And I made haste to obey them and went out from my house, and made to the doors, as it was ordered me, and summoned my sons Mathusal and Regim and Gaidad and made known to them all the marvels those men had told me.

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Chapter 1

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