“Now the earth was corrupt in God’s sight, and the earth was filled with violence. 12And God saw the earth, and behold, it was corrupt, for all flesh had corrupted their way on the earth. 13And God said to Noah, “I have determined to make an end of all flesh,c for the earth is filled with violence through them. Behold, I will destroy them with the earth.” (Genesis 6:11-13)
Whatever was happening in Noah’s day was so corrupt and so irreversibly infected with evil that God determined every living thing must die. Only Noah and his family were found to be blameless and pure on the earth. That means that every other living thing with the breath of life in its lungs had been corrupted to its core. What could possibly have caused all flesh on the earth to be utterly ruined at its core?
Although we could attribute this complete corruption of all flesh as merely the natural effects of man’s rebellion and wickedness on earth, does the Bible point to something more defiled that caused the genetic degradation of all biological life and the total permeation of evil? Is there anything in the Biblical text that suggests that Noah was more than just spiritually pure in God’s sight, but also that he and his family were somehow the only people left on earth who were “genetically” undefiled?
It makes one wonder how utterly depraved the earth must have been for God literally to wash it clean and start over with just 8 people. The harshness of God’s judgment during the flood was unusual and unique. Was there no hope for the pre-flood world? Was there no chance for redemption? Perhaps mankind had somehow become so spiritually and genetically defiled before the flood that he no longer resembled the image of God?
Our knowledge of the antediluvian world basically is limited to what we read in the first 9 chapters of Genesis and a few other references in Scripture. Although we can piece together a general picture of the pre-flood world using the Scriptures, there are obviously some missing puzzle pieces that prevent us from seeing the fine details. Fortunately, some of these details can be found in extra Biblical sources that were widely read and circulated in what is known as 2nd Temple Jewish literature. These books, such as 1 Enoch and Jubilees, were highly respected and valued by the community of faith, even though they traditionally have not been recognized as canonical. Some scholars completely reject such Apocryphal works as completely useless to the church, while others consider them quite useful for establishing a historical and theological context for 2nd Temple Judaism and the early church.
The book of Enoch is especially interesting for several reasons. First, we know that practically all 1st Century Jews — including the Apostles and Jesus — would have studied and been very familiar with the book of Enoch. Secondly, the book of Enoch is quoted and included in the Bible by Jude (see Jude 14-15). Again, I am not saying that Enoch is inspired Scripture, but I am saying that many of these extra Biblical books can be of great historical and theological value. Thirdly, the book of Enoch provides a behind the scenes perspective into the pre-flood world of Noah’s day, especially concerning the rebellious angelic incursion in Genesis 6. Let’s take a look at some of these details.
The Book of Enoch proper is divided into several subsections, such as the book of Noah and other parables. Although the book is attributed to Enoch – the 7th from Adam – the historical authorship is unknown. Despite the mystery surrounding the book, I believe Enoch preserves unique and reliable insight of the Genesis 6 narrative.
According to Enoch, the sons of God — called the Watchers (Daniel 4:17) — conspired together to abandon their proper domain in heaven and transgress the God of heaven by taking human wives and producing offspring with them — the giants. These Watchers, 200 in number, descended upon Mt. Hermon and commenced to corrupting the earth in every way imaginable. Enoch explains how these Watchers not only corrupted human flesh by cross breeding but also indicates how they corrupted all plant and animal life in a similar way. It is not difficult to believe that these intellectually superior, angelic beings had the knowledge and advanced technology to set the human race on a crash course of destruction. In other words, the Watchers introduced forbidden knowledge and demonic practices to mankind that would effectively accelerate their own death and destruction.
Consider one passage from the Book of Enoch 9:6-9
“Thou seest what Azâzêl hath done, who hath taught all unrighteousness on earth and revealed the eternal secrets which were (preserved) in heaven, which men were striving to learn: 7. And Semjâzâ, to whom Thou hast given authority to bear rule over his associates. 8. And they have gone to the daughters of men upon the earth, and have slept with the women, and have defiled themselves, and revealed to them all kinds of sins. 9. And the women have borne giants, and the whole earth has thereby been filled with blood and unrighteousness.
In Chapter 8 of Enoch, this very same Azâzêl, one of the Watchers, introduced new technology and metallurgy to mankind to build weapons of war, while the other Watchers taught men and women forbidden occult knowledge, divination, astrology, sorcery, blood sacrifice, and all forms of witchcraft, leading men to the worship of demons (Enoch 19).
The Genesis 6 angelic incursion was an all-out demonic assault against mankind with the intention of destroying the entire human race and establishing the kingdom of darkness on earth. The primary motivation of this rebellion, however, is connected to the greater gospel story, involving enmity between the seed of the woman and the seed of Satan (Genesis 3:15). Satan and his fallen ones were ultimately attempting to wipe the seed of the woman from the face of the earth to eliminate any and every possibility for the birth of the future Messiah – Jesus Christ.
This is why Noah and his family were so vital, not just to the survival of mankind, but ultimately for the eternal salvation of mankind that would be made possible through the coming Messiah. It was about preserving the pure seed — the uncorrupted genetic traits found in Noah and his family — which eventually would be passed down through Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Judah, David and eventually to Jesus Himself. God’s plan of redemption was never to be thwarted, as God has proven time and time again.
In light of this, there are some very disturbing machinations of men that have begun to materialize in our day that seem all too familiar to what was happening in Noah’s day. With the completion of the human genome project in 2003, geneticists have regained the ability to analyze, manipulate, and enhance human and animal genes since it first happened in the days of Noah. Although scientists have insisted that the primary application of mapping the human genome is for the benefit of mankind and to provide medical breakthroughs that will save millions of lives, others clearly have different motives.
News stories are appearing daily around the world revealing the nefarious motivations behind genetic manipulations and biogenetic engineering. Here are only a few that come to mind most recently. The first link involving U.S. Department of Health and Human Services using aborted baby body parts to make “humanized mice,” (with our tax payer dollars no less).
The second story below details how scientists in China have already successfully accomplished gene editing to create the first “designer babies.” And these applications are the ones we are only allowed to see. Who really knows how far the limits have been pushed in the private sector or within top secret government programs?
Finally, it has been well documented that the U.S. military has invested millions of dollars in the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, or D.A.R.P.A., which specializes in advance weaponry, and more recently biogenetic engineering. Many believe the inevitable application of this technology will be the creation of the “super soldiers,” who will be both genetically and robotically enhanced to excel on the battle field.
For the first time in the modern era, we are living in a generation with the technological capabilities and scientific knowledge that potentially could lead to the corruption of all flesh once again, as it was in the days of Noah.