|Enoch was translated that he should not see death. Elijah went up by
a whirlwind into heaven. Yet the Bible reveals they are not in heaven today! WHERE
ARE THEY? Here's the astounding truth.
Where Is Enoch?
ENOCH was "translated." Where did he go? Was he
immediately taken to heaven? NO! Because Jesus Himself said: "No
man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of
man" (John 3:13). Here are Jesus own words that no man, except
Himself, had ascended into heaven!
And how did He know? Why, He came from there!
Then where is Enoch? Lets see what the Bible says.
Enoch Walked with God
At the age of 65 Enoch had a son named Methuselah.
"And Enoch walked with God after he begat Methuselah three hundred years,
and he begat sons and daughters" (Genesis 5:22).
Here was a man that PLEASED God, a man that WALKED
Enoch had to have faith, for in Hebrews 11:6 the Apostle said, "But
without faith it is impossible to PLEASE Him: for he that cometh
to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek
Him." So Enoch walked with God. He obeyed God, and followed Him in His paths
No one can walk with God unless he is in agreement with the will
of God and doing it. Amos the prophet said: "Can two walk together, except
they be agreed?" (Amos 3:3.) So in his generation Enoch was the only
recorded person who followed the ways of Godeven though it possibly took him
sixty-five years to learn to walk with God!
But how long did Enoch walk with God? The Scripture says that he
"walked with God after he begat Methuselah three hundred years." So
Enoch followed Gods ways for three hundred years. Notice that Moses did not
record that Enoch is still walking with God. The Scripture says that Enoch WALKED
with God for three hundred years and not one year more! Then Enoch is not still
walking with God! Why?
Because "all the days of Enoch were three hundred sixty-five
years" (Gen. 5:23). All the days of Enoch were three hundred and sixty-five
years. Not just part of his days, but all his days! If Enoch did not
dieif he was changed to immortalityand thus continued to walk with
God, then his days would have been more than three hundred and sixty-five years.
But the Bible plainly says that ALL his days were just that many, and no
This expression "all his days" is used in the same fifth chapter of
Genesis about a dozen times and always it means that the person lived for that length of
time ONLY "and he died." So Enoch lived NO MORE
than three hundred and sixty-five years because "all his days were three
hundred and sixty-five years." As he lived only for this length of time THEN
HE MUST HAVE DIED!
But what about his translation? Does that mean he didnt die?
Thats what most people carelessly assume without proof
What Really Happened at Enochs Translation!
Remember, Moses didnt write that Enoch did
not die. Rather Moses wrote that "Enoch walked with God: and he was not; for
God took him" (Gen. 5:24). Paul records the same event by saying that he "was
not found, because God had translated him" (Heb. 11:5).
Thus the Scripture records that Enoch was not found because God took
him, or "translated" him. THE BIBLE DOES NOT SAY THAT ENOCH WENT TO
HEAVEN when he was translated. Instead it says he was not found.
Certainly Enoch was "translated," but what does the word
Strange as it may seem, nowhere in all the Bible does "translate"
mean to make immortal!
The original Greek word for "translate" is metatithemi.
According to Strongs Concordance it signifies: transfer, transport, exchange,
The same Greek word is rendered "carried over" in Acts 7:16. Here
we read that after Jacob DIED his body was "carried
over"transported, TRANSLATEDto Sychem WHERE HE
WAS BURIED! Thats what your Bible says! Jacob was transported or TRANSLATED
to the place of burial!
That is why Moses said that God TOOK Enoch. God
removedtranslatedhim so that he was not found. God took Enoch and
In Deuteronomy 34:6 we read also how God took Moses from the people after
which he died and was buried by God. "But no man knoweth his sepulcher unto this
day." God removed MosesGod translated himand he was not found
So Enoch was not made immortal after all! He was taken away and was not
found. ALL his days were three hundred and sixty-five! Thats as
long as Enoch lived.
Notice another proof that "translate" does not mean to make
immortal. It is found in Col. 1:13: the Father "hath delivered us from the power of
darkness, and hath TRANSLATED us into the kingdom of His dear Son."
Here the Bible says that Christians are already translatedbut Christians
still die! We are not immortal bodies, but mortal flesh and blood. Although we were once
part of the darkness of this world, now we are TRANSLATED, removed
from darkness into the light of the kingdom of God.
Didnt Receive the Promise
Enoch is included by Paul (in Hebrews 11) among the
fathers who obtained a good report through faith; but "ALL these, having obtained a
good report through faith, received not the promise" (Heb. 11:39). What
promise? The "hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, promised
before the world began (Titus 1:2).
So Enoch therefore is one of "ALL THESE" who have not
yet obtained the promise of eternal life and inheritance. Enoch and all the worthies
of old will receive the promise of eternal life at the return of Christ, the same
time Christians obtain it (Heb. 11:40). That is yet future!
Since Enoch has not yet inherited eternal life he must be dead! This is
exactly what Paul writes in Heb. 11:13! Paul says Enoch DIED! Notice it!
"These ALL died in faith, not having received what was
promised: Who were these "ALL"?
Paul tells us: Abel, ENOCH, Noah, and the patriarchs and
their wives. Hebrews 11:1-12 lists those who had faith and Enoch is included among them.
Then in verse 13 Paul proved that they had not inherited the promises by saying:
"These ALL [including Enoch] died in faith?
But what about Pauls saying that Enoch "should not see
Which Death Did Enoch Escape?
Enoch lived only three hundred sixty-five years. Then what
could Paul possibly have meant by saying: "By faith Enoch was translated that he
should not see death; and was not found because God had translated him?" This
verse nowhere says that Enoch did not die. Rather, it says that Enoch "should
not see death." But what does it mean?
Remember, there is more than one death mentioned in the Bible. There
is a first death, and there is a second death (Rev. 20:6). Which
death did Paul mean?
The first death is appointed unto men (Heb. 9:27). That
death cannot be humanly evaded. It is inevitable. That death Enoch died, as we have
But Paul was not writing about that death. The phrase "should
not see" is in the conditional tense of the verb, having reference to a
future event. It is not in the past tense, that he "did not see" deathbut
that he "should not see death." So this death that Enoch escaped by being
translated is one that he can escape in the future ON CERTAIN CONDITIONS!
Did Jesus ever speak of a death that might be escaped? He certainly
did! In John 8:51 Jesus said, "Verily, verily, I say unto you, If a man keep my
sayings, he shall never see death"shall never see that is,
sufferthe second death! And again in John 11:26, "Whoso liveth and believeth in
me shall never die"or "shall not die forever."
This death is one that can be escaped on condition that men keep the
sayings of Jesus and believe Him. This death is not the first death, because
Christians who keep Jesus sayings die this first death. Then the death which Enoch should
escape must be the second death which will NEVER TOUCH THOSE WHO ARE IN
THE FIRST RESURRECTION (Rev. 20:6). And Enoch will be in the first
resurrection because he met the conditions!
Enoch had faith. He believed God and walked with God, obeying Him. In keeping
the sayings of God, Enoch kept the sayings of Jesus too; because Jesus did not speak of
Himself, but spoke what the Father commanded Him (John 14:10).
Thus Enoch met the conditions so that he should not see death.
The second death shall never touch Enoch, because of his faith and obedience.
Now we can understand Hebrews 11:5: "By faith Enoch was
translated that he should not see death; and was not found, because God had translated
him; for before his translation he had this testimony, that he pleased God."
This verse plainly mentions two translations.
Examining this verse fact by fact, we notice that Enoch had faith
and was translated. This translationremoval, transferencewas on
condition of FAITH. NOW what translation mentioned in the Bible is
on condition of faith? Why, the one we read about in Colossians 1:13. The Father
"hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into
the kingdom of His dear Son."
This is a FIGURATIVE translationa FIGURATIVE
removal or transference from the spiritual darkness of this world to the light of
the family or kingdom of God and Christ. In verse 10 Paul shows that to abide in this
kingdom we must "walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing." This is
exactly what Enoch did. He walked with God, and pleased God.
Then Enoch, the same as Christians, was delivered from the power of sin and
darkness in which he had been living for sixty-five years. He was removed
(translated) from the ways of the world and lived three hundred years according to
Gods ways so that he might inherit eternal life at Christs return, and should
not suffer the second death.
By faith Enoch was separatedremoved or translatedfrom
the world, the same as Christians who are not to be a part of the world, although
living in the world.
Not only was Enoch FIGURATIVELY taken from the society of
his day, but he was also LITERALLY removedtranslatedso that
he was not found.
God took him physically away from the people, just as He later
took Moses. And God buried each so well that neither has ever been found since! Enoch had
completed this present normal life. "All his days were three hundred sixty-five
years." This was the second translationa literal removal at death.
God gave Enoch this sign of physical removal as a type for all those who
should later follow Enochs example of faith. He was taken physically from the people
just as Christians are to be spiritually removed from the ways of the world. The
physical translation or carrying away of Enoch was also a sign to him from God that his
faith had been accepted.
Like every true saint, Enoch is awaiting the hope of the resurrection and the
return of Christ (Jude 14, 15).
Did Elijah Go To Heaven?
You have been told that Elijah went to heaven. Yet over 900
years after Elijah was taken up by a whirlwind Jesus Himself said. "NO MAN
ascended up to heaven, but He that came down from heaven, even the Son of man!" (John
Is this a Bible contradiction? Did Elijah really ascend to the heaven where
Gods throne iseven though Jesus said he didnt?
If Elijah is not in heaven today, then where did Elijah go?
There are three heavens mentioned in the Bible, not
just one! And if, as Jesus said, no man, which included Elijah, had ever
ascended to the heaven where He came from, then the heaven into which Elijah was taken was
a different heaven!
Which one was it?
The third heaven is the heaven of Gods throne, where Jesus is today.
Jesus, being the High Priest of God, is the only one who has the right to be in that
heaven with the Father.
Notice why! Hebrews 8:1-5 explains that the original earthly tabernacle under
the Old Covenant, with its most holy place, or compartment, was the type of the throne of
God in heaven. Only the high priesttype of Christ as High Priest
nowwas allowed to enter!
The second heaven represents the expanse of this great universethe
space where we find the sun, moon, stars, comets and planets. How often do we find the
Psalmist admiring the "heavens, the work of Thy fingers, the moon, and the
stars, which Thou has ordained" (Psalm 8:3; Genesis 1:15-17).
Beside the heaven of the stars, we find that the atmosphere, the air that
surrounds this world, is also called heaven. Birds fly "in the midst of
heaven" certainly not Gods throne in heavenfor we read in
Genesis 1:20 of "fowl that may fly above the earth in the open firmament of
heaven." In blessing Jacob, Isaac said; "God give thee of the dew of
heaven: and Moses joyed that the "heavens shall drop down dew" (see Gen.
27:28 and Deut. 33:28).
This first heaven, from which dew comes, means the atmosphere, where
the clouds and the wind roam. Everyone of us is right now breathing the air of heaven!
Since Elijah could not have gone to the heaven of Gods throne, then to
which heaven did he go?for the Scripture reads: "and Elijah went up by a whirlwind
into heaven" (II Kings 2:1, 11).
The answer ought already be quite obvious! Elijah "went up by a whirlwind
into heaven"not to the heaven of Gods throne, but into this earths
atmosphere, the first heaven.
There could be no whirlwind in any other place but in the atmosphere
surrounding this earthin the first heaven, in which the birds fly. You
certainly have seen the great lifting power of a whirlwind, havent you?
Why Taken Up?
What was the reason for this unusual act of God? Why did He
take Elijah up into the atmosphere? Was it to make him immortal? No! The Scripture
says no word about that! The ancient prophetsincluding Elijahdid not
receive any promise of immortality prior to or apart from us. Notice it in Hebrews 11:13
and 39: "These all, having obtained a good report through faith, received
not the promise!" And we shall not receive it until Christ returns (Heb. 11:40).
So Elijah was not to be made immortalfor that would give him
pre-eminence above Jesus. But what does the Bible reveal as the reason for his
removal? II Kings 2:3 and 5 has the answer.
Notice now what the sons of the prophets said to Elisha: "Knowest thou
that the Lord will take away thy master from thy head today?" Or as the
Smith and Goodspeed translation has it, "Do you know that today the Lord is about to
take away your master from being your leader?" Christ is the head of the
Church today as Elijah was the head or leader of the sons or disciples of the prophets in
that day. God had sent Elijah as His prophet to wicked king Ahab and to his son
Ahaziah. Now God wanted Elisha to direct His work, as Ahaziah the king had died (II Kings
1-18) and a new king was ruling.
So what did God do?
He could not allow Elijah to be among the people with Elisha directing the
work now. That would have been the same as disqualifying him! God never takes an
office from a man when that man has been performing his duty well, the only thing God
could do would have been to remove Elijah so that another would fulfill the
This God did do. When he was taken up, Elijahs mantle dropped from him
and Elisha picked it up. See II Kings 2:12-15.
And what did the "mantle" mean?
In Clarkes Commentary we note that it was "worn by prophets
and priests as the simple insignia of their office." (Vol. 2, page 484.)
The purpose of God in removing Elijah was to replace him with another man who
would occupy Elijahs office in Israel for another fifty years. This work had to
start under a new king, for Ahaziah had just died. And Elijah was already aging. So as not
to disqualify Elijah in the sight of the people, God took him away from the sons of the
prophets and the people, allowing the mantle which signified the office of Elijah to drop
into the hands of Elisha. Thus God preserved the name and office of His prophet.
How Taken Up?
Having crossed Jordan near Jericho, Elijah was taken
up by a whirlwind in what appeared to be a chariot and horses of fire. The violent motion
of the wind pulled the mantle off the prophet as he was seen to ascend into the sky. You
probably remember reading the promise of Elijah that Elisha would have a double portion of
the Spirit of God if he would be allowed by God to see Elijah taken up (II Kings 2:9). All
this meant that Elisha was to be the leader, the new head of the sons of the prophets.
Having ascended into the air, Elijah was borne away out of the sight of the
new leaderbeyond the horizon. But
Where Did Elijah Go?
This has been the perplexing problem to so many!
He did not ascend to the throne of God. Jesus said so! Yet he
couldnt remain in the air forever.
And God did not say that Elijah was to die at that time. If he were, Elisha
could have assumed his new office without the removal of Elijah, for we know that Elisha
died in office after fulfilling his duty (II Kings 13:14).
The sons of the prophets who knew that their master was to be removed also
that Elijah was not to die then. That is why they were fearful that the Spirit of
God might have allowed him to drop "upon some mountain, or into some valley" (II
Kings 2:16). Elisha knew that God would preserve Elijah from falling, but at their
insistence he permitted men to go in search for himto no avail.
Elijah was gone!
And where to? Certainly the whirlwind used by God could not take him beyond
the earths atmosphere. Neither does the Bible account leave Elijah in the air!
The Answer Unfolds
Let us notice the next few years and see what further events
the Scripture records. The new king of Israel was another son of Ahab, Jehoram, or Joram
as he is sometimes called. The beginning of his reign marked the year of the removal of
Elijah (II Kings 1:18 and 3:1). During this kings reign Elisha was the recognized
prophet of God (II Kings 3:11). In the fifth year of Joram king of Israel, the son of the
king of Judah began to reign along with his father in Judah (II Kings 8:16). His name also
was Jehoram. The first thing he did to establish his kingdom rule was to put his relatives
to the sword lest they should claim the throne from him (11 Chronicles 2 1:4). For nearly
six years he followed the ways of the nations about him and did evil in Gods sight.
Almost ten years had now expired since Elijah was taken
from the people. But what do you think was about to happen?
A Letter Comes from Elijah!
Yes, after this wicked rule by the Jewish king, God
chose Elijah to write a letter and have it sent to the king!
The contents of the letter are found in II Chronicles 21:12-15. In part it
reads: "Because thou hast not walked in the ways of. . . thy father . - .
but hast walked in the way of the kings of Israel.. . and also hast slain
thy brethren of thy fathers house, which were better than thyself. . . thou
shalt have great sickness by disease."
From the wording of the letter, it is clear that Elijah wrote it after
these events had occurred, for he speaks of them as past events, and of the
disease as future. Two years after the king became diseased the king
diedhaving reigned only eight short years (II Chronicles 21:18-20).
This proves that the letter was written about ten years after Elijah had
been taken to another location by the whirlwind.
God used Elijah to convey the message because he was the prophet of God in
days of the present kings fatherand the son was not going in the ways of his
obedient father, Jehosophat.
The letter he had others deliver was recognized as hisproving that he
was known to be alive someplace. Just how much longer he lived, the Bible does not reveal.
But in that "it is appointed unto men once to die"Elijah must
have died somewhat later. See Hebrews 9:27. All human beings born of Adam, and that
includes Elijah, must diefor we read: "In Adam ALL DIE" (I
Corinthians 15:22). Elijah was a man "subject to like passions as we
are" (James 5:17)...subject to human nature and death! The prophet, being mortal
flesh as we are, could not have lived much beyond his seventy years.
To suppose that God gave him the power of an endless life of nearly three
thousand years already is to read into the Bible what is not there! He was
mortal, subject to death, and after being lifted into the atmospheric heavens, spent the
remaining years of his separate life at some little-known location on the earth, living as
every human being, before he naturally died.
Was Elijah on the Mount?
The only remaining texts that puzzle people are those
relative to the appearance of Moses and Elijah on the Mount of Transfiguration with Jesus.
The record of the event is found in Matthew 17:1-9; Mark 9:2-10; Luke 9:28-36.
Leaving the mountain, Jesus told his disciples: "Tell the vision
to no man (Mat. 17:9)." A vision is not a material reality but a
supernatural picture observed by the eyes.
Moses died, and was buried (Deut. 34:5-6). Both he and Elijah were still dead
in their graves, but in vision both they and Jesus were seen in the glory of the
resurrectionan event to which Moses and Elijah have not yet attained (Heb. 11:39). The
vision was granted the disciples after Jesus had spoken of the glory of immortality
in the coming kingdom.
How plain the Bible is! Elijah is dead in the dust of the earth awaiting the
resurrection of the just. Elijah, some years after being removed in the whirlwind, went to
the grave, but will rise again to live forevermore!