To the skeptic, the Bible doesn’t make much sense and is full of discrepancies brought by man. However, for the believer, once you get beyond a surface level of knowledge concerning the Bible, you soon see how everything is intricately pieced together and that God’s fingerprints are indeed riddled all over it. A not too often talked about concept within the Bible would be concerning DNA and a “pure” human gene pool. Again, to those who either aren’t familiar with the Bible or are and haven’t looked deeply into what it says, this idea might be a first for you, but the Bible does in fact talk about genetic manipulation and the consequences of it. Let’s take a deeper look into what I’m talking about specifically using Noah and the Flood as a basis for this.
Noah and the Flood
One of the more well known stories in the Bible is the story of Noah and the flood. To summarize, after God created the world and Adam and Eve rebelled against God, we skip to a time where the earth is heavily populated. However, God makes it clear that those dwelling on the earth just have continuous evil in their hearts and the earth is filled with violence. Due to this, God decides to wipe out the earth BUT he chooses one family to save out of it. This is Noah’s family. He instructs Noah to build a large boat for his family and 2 of every kind of animal. After Noah and the animals are safe within the ark, God floods the world killing every living being on it. Once this ends, he instructs Noah and his family to repopulate the earth to start over again (Genesis 6 – Genesis 9:19).
From someone outside looking in, this is a story of an angry God that decides to commit genocide on a worldwide scale simply because people are being “bad” or are committing sins and he doesnt like that. This may seem like a conflicting aspect to the Bible for non-Christians because you’re told that God is love and he loves humanity which is displayed very well in the New Testament but in the Old Testament we have an angry God that only likes a select group of people. On the surface this looks like a huge contradiction to who the God of the Bible is. Although this is a fair assumption when one looks at this story it isn’t the correct one because it’s only looking at this story on a surface level.
An important key to truly piecing together why this flood happened is DNA or a “pure” human gene pool. Many people that use the flood story as an argument against the notion of an all loving God don’t understand what the Bible is actually saying and for the most part don’t really care to. The cause for the flood truly starts at the garden of Eden but I’ll go into that later. For now I want to focus on the cause for the evil and violence the earth experiences at this time and who’s behind it. Genesis 6:1-2 says, “Now it came to pass, when men began to multiply on the face of the earth, and daughters were born to them, that the sons of God saw the daughters of men, that they were beautiful; and they took wives for themselves of all whom they chose”. This passage tells us that the “sons of God” (known as “bene ha elohim” in Hebrew) decided to have a lot of wives due to their beauty. The most important part here being who are the sons of God?
The Sons of God
When reading this story multiple times we tend to believe we know everything and skim it a bit to either read through it or get to the better details. This terminology here is used for the angelic host of heaven and not human beings residing on earth. It’s used in three other places in the Old Testament as well, specifically in the book of Job,
- “Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan also came among them”, (Job 1:6).
- “Again there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan came also among them to present himself before the Lord” (Job 2:1).
In the first 2 passages, we are getting a look into the supernatural realm, specifically heaven. This is a drastic change in setting from what we’re first introduced to in Job 1:1-5 where we get a description of a man named Job and his possessions and family. In Job 1:12-13, the setting changes again back to earth to see the outcome of what happened in the supernatural realm. This change in setting occurs again in Job 2:6-7. There are only a handful of times in the Bible where we, the readers, are given the opportunity to see the cause of what we see here on earth, that being disease, death, hate, lack, etc. The Bible makes it clear that life is a constant struggle between the forces of good and evil in the supernatural realm, and it’s the supernatural realm that effects what we see in the natural, “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places” (Ephesians 6:12). The third passage in Job is,
- “Where wast thou when I laid the foundations of the earth? declare, if thou hast understanding. Who hath laid the measures thereof, if thou knowest? or who hath stretched the line upon it? Whereupon are the foundations thereof fastened? or who laid the corner stone thereof; When the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy?” (Job 38:4-7).
In this passage from the book of Job, God is questioning Job if he has knowledge and understanding of the creation process and how God created things. He asks Job where was he when the foundations of the earth were fastened and when the corner stone was laid and the “sons of God” shouted for joy at witnessing these acts of creation. From these verses, the Bible clearly shows us that these “sons of God” are not human as they existed before even the creation of the earth and Genesis makes it clear that the earth was created after heaven and humans also were at the end of the creation process (Genesis 1).
This idea that angels came to earth and by the acts they committed, rebelled against God is also supported in other places in the Bible,
- “And the angels who did not keep their proper domain, but left their own abode, He has reserved in everlasting chains under darkness for the judgment of the great day; as Sodom and Gomorrah, and the cities around them in a similar manner to these, having given themselves over to sexual immorality and gone after strange flesh, are set forth as an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire”, (Jude 1:6-7)
- “For if God did not spare the angels who sinned, but cast them down to hell and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved for judgment; and did not spare the ancient world, but saved Noah, one of eight people, a preacher of righteousness, bringing in the flood on the world of the ungodly…”, (II Peter 2:4-5)
These 2 separate passages states that the angels, at some point in time in the distant past, left their original home (heaven) and due to their actions of sexual immorality and going after “strange flesh” are now being chained waiting for judgement. This idea that the angels did in fact commit sexual sins of some kind is supported by the fact that Jude ties in the angels that left their “proper abode” to Sodom and Gomorrah and to their sexual sins which they’re known for stating “as Sodom and Gomorrah, and the cities around them in a similar manner to these. II Peter also makes it clear that these angels sinned against God, a sin not stated in this passage but is later expanded upon in Jude using Sodom and Gomorrah as a reference to piece it together. If this wasn’t the case, the link between these verses wouldn’t make sense as we wouldnt know why the angels left their original home and what they did to warrant the punishment they recieved.
So when we say these “sons of God” are indeed angels that came to earth for the sake of having wives, why does that matter? Let’s take a look at the next passage to see what this brings, “There were giants on the earth in those days, and also afterward, when the sons of God came in to the daughters of men and they bore children to them. Those were the mighty men who were of old, men of renown”, (Genesis 6:4). Here we see that the “sons of God” not only took as many wives as they wanted but they also reproduced with them. The outcome of angels reproducing with human women are human/angel hybrids known as “nephilim”, Hebrew for “the fallen ones” or also called giants. I also want to note that my purpose here isn’t to make an argument for or against the existence of giants but to see what the Bible truly says about the flood story. Whether you believe giants truly existed or not isn’t the point here but to the characters within the Bible they were a very real threat. Below are some examples of specific descriptions of giants in the old testament even beyond the Genesis account of them,
- “And Ishbibenob, which was of the sons of the giant, the weight of whose spear weighed three hundred shekels of brass in weight, he being girded with a new sword, thought to have slain David…And it came to pass after this, that there was again a battle with the Philistines at Gob: then Sibbechai the Hushathite slew Saph, which was of the sons of the giant. And there was again a battle in Gob with the Philistines, where Elhanan the son of Jaareoregim, a Bethlehemite, slew the brother of Goliath the Gittite, the staff of whose spear was like a weaver’s beam. And there was yet a battle in Gath, where was a man of great stature, that had on every hand six fingers, and on every foot six toes, four and twenty in number; and he also was born to the giant…These four were born to the giant in Gath, and fell by the hand of David, and by the hand of his servants” (2 Samuel 21:16, 18-20, 22).
“And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying, Send thou men, that they may search the land of Canaan, which I give unto the children of Israel: of every tribe of their fathers shall ye send a man, every one a ruler among them…So they went up, and searched the land from the wilderness of Zin unto Rehob, as men come to Hamath…And they told him, and said, We came unto the land whither thou sentest us, and surely it floweth with milk and honey; and this is the fruit of it. Nevertheless the people be strong that dwell in the land, and the cities are walled, and very great: and moreover we saw the children of Anak there…And they brought up an evil report of the land which they had searched unto the children of Israel, saying, The land, through which we have gone to search it, is a land that eateth up the inhabitants thereof; and all the people that we saw in it are men of a great stature. And there we saw the giants, the sons of Anak, which come of the giants: and we were in our own sight as grasshoppers, and so we were in their sight.” (Numbers 13:1–2; 21; 27–28; 32–33).
- “That also was accounted a land of giants: giants dwelt therein in old time; and the Ammonites call them Zamzummims; A people great, and many, and tall, as the Anakims…” (Deuteronomy 2:20-21).
- “And the Hittites, and the Perizzites, and the Rephaims…” (Genesis 15:20).
Those are only a couple passages where giants are talked about in detail; their height and figure, weight and size of weapons used by the giants, and even the various tribes (Zamzummims, Anakims, Rephaims) of giants are mentioned as well as the land they resided in.
In part 2 of this study, Genesis 6: The “sons of God” (Part 2), we’ll be looking into the early church history behind the viewpoint of fallen angels coming to earth to mingle with mankind and discover that many early church fathers shared the same belief on Genesis 6.