The Nephilim were on the earth in those days (and also after this) when the sons of God were having sexual relations with the daughters of humankind, who gave birth to their children. They were the mighty heroes of old, the famous men.[Genesis 6:4 — NET Bible]
While the Biblical record may not provide a comprehensive description of the ancient, antediluvian world, it is far from silent on the subject. Genesis clearly distinguishes the pre-flood world as a unique age when the sons of God (i.e. heavenly beings) procreated with human wives and produced hybrid offspring who built advanced civilizations on the earth.
Nearly every ancient civilization and extra-biblical tradition refer to this era as the “golden age,” when the “gods” came down and lived among men and their offspring ruled the earth as giant kings and heroes before the great cataclysm destroyed them all. Greek legends perhaps provide the most familiar accounts of the golden age when Zeus and Poseidon cohabited with human wives producing men of great renown. Whether the Egyptians, Babylonians, Norse, Romans, or Native Americans, the pagan traditions hearken back to this golden age with longing, as a time of great abundance, progress, peace, prosperity, ingenuity and longevity.
Ironically, the Hebrew account of the pre-flood world is fundamentally different from the pagan mythos. Instead of being portrayed as peaceful progenitors and saviors of mankind, these ancient gods and their hybrid kings of the antediluvian age were not benevolent rulers but rather wicked tyrants who defiantly opposed the Most High God and declared war on Him and His Son. They proliferated evil through brazen idolatry, gross immorality, insatiable violence, and utter corruption of all flesh. God knew man’s days were numbered — and if God had not cut those days short, no flesh would have survived.
This incursion of the rebellious sons of God and the dispersion of their Nephilim offspring on the earth pushed the human race to the brink of extinction — which precisely is why God preserved Noah and prepared the ark. Man and beast alike were on the path to ultimate ruin until God intervened to save mankind and by extension the promised seed of the woman — the One from Adam’s race destined once and for all to crush the head of the enemy.
The Nephilim hybrids were far superior to the sons of Adam in intellect, size, strength, knowledge, and technology, creating a ruling class of mighty ones who subjugated and oppressed mankind. These giant kings of great renown inherited the genetic signature from their celestial fathers, which made them beyond human. Yet by receiving the X chromosome from their mortal mothers, they were human enough to qualify as “men” and therefore legally and rightfully lay claim to the dominion of the earth.
The flood was universal in scope and incomprehensible in devastation. The target of the flood was not mankind. Quite the contrary. As the rightful inheritors and rulers of the earth, man was saved through the flood and given authority to begin again.
The flood had to be catastrophic and complete to utterly wash the earth of the seed of the Serpent — the Nephilim. No longer bearing the image of God. A hybrid race corrupted in the image of the fallen sons of God. So as God judged the hybrid kings on the earth in the flood, He also judged the rebel sons of God by locking them away in the hollow depths of the abyss and handing Jesus the keys.
These fallen sons are eternally cut off from God’s family and expelled from His kingdom for their treasonous transgression against the Most High.
Dismantling the Theological Taboo about Angels
And Jesus said to them, “The sons of this age marry and are given in marriage, 35but those who are considered worthy to attain to that age and to the resurrection from the dead neither marry nor are given in marriage, 36for they cannot die anymore, because they are equal to angels and are sons of God, being sons of the resurrection.[Luke 20:34-35]
I readily admit that many acclaimed scholars and theologians reject, ignore, or even scoff at this interpretation of Genesis 6 altogether, primarily on the faulty presupposition that “angels” cannot marry nor are they given in marriage. Furthermore, many simply cannot stomach the thought of angelic beings having sex with human women, as if it is theological taboo. One reason so many struggle to embrace the full extent of human and angelic interaction is because they have exchanged the Biblical description of the divine sons of God for fanciful and fantastic depictions of “angels” as wing-feathered females flying along with their fat, naked, baby cherubs. The Bible reveals no such thing.
Whenever the Scriptures describe an angel (messenger) — aka one of the divine sons of God — they invariably appear human in form and always are depicted as men — “sons” — never as women. What if the sons of men are much more akin to the heavenly sons of God than we ever expected? Angels are depicted as having physicality, being able to eat and drink and wield weapons and wage war and interact with the material world. Angels align with humans both anatomically and corporeally. Angels certainly are supremely capable beings with enhanced DNA and therefore possess their own genetic signature — their own kind (race).
Just because we are unable to perceive and understand the spiritual realm, doesn’t mean that it is non-physical. There seems to be no physical limitation keeping angels from procreating with human women. When Jesus made the statement that angels do not marry (Matthew 22:29-30, Luke 20:34-36), He was referring to the fixed boundaries between heaven and earth. It’s not that angelic beings are incapable of sexual reproduction, it is that they are forbidden from it, which explains in part why the sons of God envied mankind and lusted for their wives. They wanted what they could not have.
God established a created order and made a divine decree from His throne that man is only to reproduce after his own kind. It is not lawful for heavenly beings to intermarry with mankind. The rebellious sons of God violated this law with cross-species hybridization. It was a corruption of God’s image, an abomination and offense to God of the highest degree. One deserving swift and resolute judgment.
What I am proposing is not taboo. It is certainly not heretical. It is not interpretive license. It is not poor exegesis. It is soundly Biblical and theologically viable in every sense of the word.
But just because something in the Scriptures makes us feel uncomfortable is not grounds to reject it. We often fear what we don’t understand. Yet we must always allow the Scripture simply to say what it says and mean what it means.
The Antediluvian Angels Who Sexually Sinned
For those who are not ready to accept the Biblical view of the ancient, antediluvian world — specifically pertaining to the unprecedented procreation between the sons of God and the daughters of men — it is not a matter of dispute from the testimony of Scripture. I find it untenable to argue against this view using the Scriptures.
For sake of time, I will refer to some key passages from the Apostles, who clearly operated in and interpreted Scripture through an ancient Hebrew Genesis 6 paradigm.
Peter acknowledges that there are rebellious spirits (fallen angels) who presently are being held in chains of judgment for their transgression when “God’s patience waited in the days of Noah.” Notice that it is Christ — the firstborn Son of God — who has been given all authority over the angels and all the rulers and princes in the heavenly realm.
For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive in the Spirit, 19in which he went and proclaimed to the spirits in prison, 20because they formerly did not obey, when God’s patience waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was being prepared, in which a few, that is, eight persons, were brought safely through water.
21Baptism, which corresponds to this, now saves you, not as a removal of dirt from the body but as an appeal to God for a good conscience, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, 22who has gone into heaven and is at the right hand of God, with angels, authorities, and powers having been subjected to him.[1 Peter 3:18-22]
Peter again mentions the ancient angelic defection in the pre-flood world and connects their motivation as defiling lust and despising authority.
For if God did not spare angels when they sinned, but cast them into hell [tartarus] and committed them to chains of gloomy darkness to be kept until the judgment;5if he did not spare the ancient world, but preserved Noah, a herald of righteousness, with seven others, when he brought a flood upon the world of the ungodly; 6if by turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah to ashes he condemned them to extinction, making them an example of what is going to happen to the ungodly; 7and if he rescued righteous Lot, greatly distressed by the sensual conduct of the wicked 8(for as that righteous man lived among them day after day, he was tormenting his righteous soul over their lawless deeds that he saw and heard); 9then the Lord knows how to rescue the godly from trials, and to keep the unrighteous under punishment until the day of judgment, 10and especially those who indulge in the lust of defiling passion and despise authority. Bold and willful, they do not tremble as they blaspheme the glorious ones,11whereas angels, though greater in might and power, do not pronounce a blasphemous judgment against them before the Lord.[2 Peter 2:4-11]
Once again, Peter is referring to the sons of God who sinned by taking human wives in the days before the flood — indulging in the lust of defiling passion and despising the authority of God. The only possible candidate in Scripture that qualifies is the Genesis 6 narrative.
Jude confirms this on the testimony of multiple witnesses.
You also know that the angels who did not keep within their proper domain but abandoned their own place of residence, he has kept in eternal chains in utter darkness, locked up for the judgment of the great Day. 7So also Sodom and Gomorrah and the neighboring towns, since they indulged in sexual immorality and pursued unnatural desire in a way similar to these angels, are now displayed as an example by suffering the punishment of eternal fire. 8Yet these men, as a result of their dreams, defile the flesh, reject authority, and insult the glorious ones.[Jude 1:6-8]
Jude echoes Peter by reminding us of the forbidden sin of the watcher angels who did not keep their proper domain in heaven but rather intruded upon the earth to indulge in sexual immorality — namely by pursuing unnatural desire with the human race and perverting God’s created order.
The gravity of this transgression led to the destruction of every living thing on the planet through the flood and the immediate incarceration of the rebellious sons of God who had conspired to corrupt and conquer the earth.
Finally, the testimony of Enoch gives further details of the rebellion of the watchers.
Thou see what Azazel hath done, who hath taught all unrighteousness on earth and revealed the eternal secrets which were in heaven, which men were striving to learn; and Samlazaz, to whom Thou hast given authority to bear rule over his associates. 6 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. And the women have borne giants, and the whole earth has thereby been filled with blood and unrighteousness.
And again the Lord said to Raphael, “Bind Azazel hand and foot, and cast him into the darkness: and make an opening in the desert, which is in Dudael, and cast him therein. And place upon him rough and jagged rocks, and cover him with darkness, and let him abide there for ever, and cover his face that he may not see light. And on the day of the great judgement he shall be cast into the fire.[1 Enoch 4:5-6, 10]
Now that we have a better understanding of the seed war that has been raging since the beginning of creation, we can look toward the Seed of the woman — the son of Abraham, son of David — the Son of Adam, the Son of God. And we can look forward to the future culmination this ancient war with the revealing of Antichrist, the coming hybrid age, the battle of armageddon and the coming of the Son of Man to once and for all save the earth!
Also, many of the themes in this post have been gleaned from Timothy Alberino’s new book, Birthright.