Did Enoch know About the Flood?
Ellen White wrote:
God communed with Enoch through angels and gave him divine instruction. He made known to him that he would not always bear with man in his rebellion that his purpose was to destroy the sinful race by bringing a flood of waters upon the earth.
Through holy angels God revealed to Enoch His purpose to destroy the world by a flood, and He also opened more fully to him the plan of redemption.(Italics added)
The point of contention here is concerning a statement by Victor Houteff which appears to be contrary to the references above.
Jude proves that Enoch was a messenger of God, and yet that he warned his generation of the destruction of the world by the second advent of Christ when, in fact, the flood was the event which was to and subsequently did destroy the world of Enoch's time! Enoch simply was not shown the truth of the flood.Therefore, he preached the destruction then in the terms of the coming of the Lord.”
Don't Judge Too Quickly
As you are aware, it is easy to make someone apparently contradict themselves or someone else if statements are stripped of there context. This is done by politicians in practically every campaign.A candidate's previous voting record or statements are used against him years later and without due reverence to the circumstances. The same is true here with the Rod and Sister White’s statement.
This should not be a surprise to us and we should be very careful to understand everything in its proper context no matter how contradictory it appears at first glance. After all, the same thing occurs with the Bible and the Spirit of Prophecy. Although there are tens of examples that could be used, let us look briefly at just a few.
We all know that Moses in Leviticus 11 and Deuteronomy 14 lists clean and unclean foods—foods that can and can not be eaten. Yet Paul apparently contradicts this and writes:
Whatsoever is set before you, eat, asking no question for conscience sake.” 1 Corinthians 10:27. “For every creature of God is good, and nothing to be refused, if it be received with thanksgiving.” 1 Timothy 4:4.
How about Ellen White? Did she write statements that could be interpreted as contradicting plain facts? There are many, but we have space for just one.
I saw that Old Jerusalem never would be built up.” When this statement was written, Jerusalem was not a developed metropolis. But, it is built up today. This statement is used by Ellen White’s opponents to try and show that she was a false prophet. Of course, we know that she was indeed a true messenger of God, yet we cannot deny that this makes her appear spurious. We have confidence in her writings as inspired because we have studied most or all of her works and can understand the real context of her statements. We have the clear “weight of evidence” that she was a genuine messenger of God. Therefore, it is disingenuous to reject a message just because one finds apparent contradictions and there are hundreds of other pieces of evidence that show that he or she is indeed a chosen vessel of God. In other words, we must always take the “weight of evidence” to determine the veracity of someone’s message and not use apparent contradictions to overthrow the clear facts.
When looking at the Rod’s message, we need to conduct a fair investigation of the statements in question. In short, we will see once we study the context of both statements, that Victor Houteff (through the publications of the Rod’s message) was not denying that Enoch knew about the flood, but was pointing out that Enoch was not given the prophetic application (or “truth”) of the flood in the context of Jude 14,15, which speaks of the coming of the Lord in judgement. Ellen White, in other words, was speaking in a general sense, while the Rod was speaking in a specific prophetic context.
He Had to Have Known
Even a cursory study of the Rod’s message would show that Houteff thoroughly studied and quoted from Ellen White’s writings. In fact, he quoted from the very books referenced above. He drew statements from Spiritual Gifts and twice from the Patriarchs and Prophets, just three pages away from Ellen White’s statement. The truth is, someone like Victor Houteff who read and quoted extensively from her writings and particularly these two popular books, would know that Enoch knew of the coming of the great flood. It’s almost impossible not to!
The “Truth” of the Flood
So the concern about his so-called contradictory statement, could not be saying that Enoch did not know about the coming of the flood, but that he did not have the knowledge of the prophetic application—“truth”—of the flood as it relates to the prophecy of Jude 14,15. Notice that the author of the Rod did not say that Enoch did not know about the flood or was not told about the coming of the flood, but that he was not given the “truth” of the flood.
We must remember that Jude 14,15, is the context of the Rod’s statement. “And Enoch also, the seventh from Adam, prophesied of these, saying, Behold the Lord cometh with ten thousands of his saints. To execute judgement upon all, and to convince all that are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have ungodly committed and of all their hard speeches which ungodly sinners have spoken against him.”
Now let us look at the Rod’s statement again.
“Jude proves that Enoch was a messenger of God, and yet that he warned his generation of the destruction of the world by the second advent of Christ when, in fact, the flood was the event which was to and subsequently did destroy the world of Enoch’s time. Enoch simply was not shown the truth of the flood. Therefore, he preached the destruction then in terms of the coming of the Lord..”
In other words, the prophecy of the coming of the Lord, was interpreted by Enoch as the Lord’s coming in the context of a flood., but did not have the real understanding of the flood to realize that it was something else. He did not realize that the destruction of the flood and the Lord’s coming are not related. In this sense he did not have the “truth of the flood.”
This is crystalized in the last sentence of the quotation. He wrote: “Therefore, he preached the destruction [the flood] then in the terms of the coming of the Lord.”
. Put another way, like any one else of his day would have, he drew the conclusion that the coming destructive work of the flood was the fulfillment of what he had been shown about the coming of the Lord.
. So it is in that way that his message had relevance to the people of his time. It is in this sense that Enoch did not have the “truth of the flood.” This phenomenon occurred with a number of God’s messengers. Much of what they wrote had a future fulfillment, yet they and those around them received light for their time. Houteff was simply referring to this phenomenon.
One may not agree with the terminology he used or how he expressed it, but it clearly shows what he meant. But, friends, there are countless statements in the Bible and the Spirit of Prophecy that must be read in its context in order to understand its meaning—and its meaning does not contradict the Spirit of Prophecy.
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