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also known as: Henok, Chenok or Chanokh

Meaning: initiated; dedication; commencement—probably signifying a new manner of life

This was the name of a pre-Flood city and two biblical men (one a righteous son of Jared, the other of Cain), both of the pre-Flood world…

  1. the oldest son of Cain (Genesis 4:17)—Scripture notes that he was the father of Irad (possibly meaning: “Townsman”) and grandfather of Mehujael.

  2. the city of Enoch (Genesis 4:17)—It was built by Cain, east of Eden in the land of Nod. Cain named it after his oldest son Enoch (above). This is the first “city” mentioned in Scripture. Nothing else is known about it.

    He built a city, in token of a fixed separation from the church of God, to which he had no thoughts of ever returning. This city was to be the headquarters of the apostasy. … He undertook this building, to divert his thoughts from the consideration of his own misery, and to drown the clamours of a guilty conscience with the noise of axes and hammers. Thus many baffle their convictions by thrusting themselves into a hurry of worldly business (Matthew Henry, Commentary on the Whole Bible).

    Cain went out from the presence of the Lord, and we never find that he came into it again, to his comfort. The land Cain dwelt in was called the land of Nod, which means, ‘shaking,’ or ‘trembling,’ and so shows the restlessness and uneasiness of his own spirit, or ‘the land of a vagabond:’ they that depart from God cannot find rest any where else. Those on Earth who looked for the heavenly city, chose to dwell in tabernacles or tents; but Cain, as not minding that city, built one on Earth. Thus all who are cursed of God seek their settlement and satisfaction here below (Matthew Henry, Concise Commentary).

  3. a righteous man who was apparently taken directly to Heaven, without dying

    The son of Jared, and father of Methuselah (Genesis 5:21; Luke 3:37). His father was one hundred and sixty-two years old when he was born. After the birth of Methuselah, Enoch “walked with God three hundred years” (Genesis 5:22-24), when he was translated without tasting death. His whole life on Earth was three hundred and sixty-five years. He was the “seventh from Adam” (Jude 1:14), as distinguished from the son of Cain, the third from Adam. He is spoken of in the catalogue of Old Testament worthies in the Epistle to the Hebrews (11:5). When he was translated, only Adam, so far as recorded, had as yet died a natural death, and Noah was not yet born. Mention is made of Enoch’s prophesying only in Jude 1:14 (Matthew G. Easton).

    The only other biblical example of a person being taken to heaven without apparently dying is Elijah, the Tishbite, who was taken up by God in a chariot with horses of fire, amidst “a whirlwind into heaven.”