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Nephilim - Real?|
Q. Who were the Nephilim? My local bookstore has lots of books about UFOs and the Nephilim. So I was shocked to hear my pastor mention the Nephilim. Where are they found in the Bible? Are they still around today?
This is one of the darkest, most sinister subjects in the Bible. Although there are numerous books on the subject, especially in the New Age section of bookstores, we suggest that believers stick with books or articles written by serious scholars and committed men of God. Note, too, there are striking differences of opinion on this subject.
The foundational biblical texts regarding the Nephilim are these:
Genesis 6:1-2 - Now it came about, when men began to multiply on the face of the land, and daughters were born to them, that the sons of God saw that the daughters of men were beautiful. And they took wives for themselves, whomever they chose. (NASB)
Genesis 6:4 - The Nephilim were 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. (NASB)
The question is: who were the sons of God mentioned in Genesis 6:1-2? If you take the Bible literally (or very seriously as we do) and listen to early Rabbinic thought, the translators of the Septuagint and early church fathers, then it appears that the B'nai Elohim (sons of God) must have had children with the human race of women. From this interbreeding possibly came half human, half "alien" (or half angelic) creatures called the Nephilim.
In other words, this more literal interpretation means that these beings were the result of genetic tampering. Subsequently, they were mostly destroyed in the flood during Noah's time.
(We know this is difficult to hear. A serious student may wish to investigate the alternate Sethite view as well. See References).
Perfect in his Generations
Genesis reveals that Noah was "perfect in his generations" (Genesis 6:9, NKJV, KJV) - alluding to his unblemished bloodline. His may have been the only family left on earth who was not tainted by intermarrying among the Nephilim. (You may find differing allusions from other translations).
Post Flood Appearance
After the flood, however, these creatures began to appear again. Given that Noah's family were the only humans that survived the flood, the implications are that spiritual or demonic forces are involved.
Their tribes were called the Rephaim, the Emim, the Horim, Zamsummin, and the Anakin. (The Anakites are found in Deut. 1:26-28 and 2:10-11). They were all giants. Og's kingdom, the king of Bashan, was a land of the giants found in Deuteronomy 2:10-12, and 3:11. Note that Og's bed was made of iron and was over thirteen feet long and six feet wide!
Genesis 14:5-6 mentions a group of five kings around the Dead Sea who fought three warrior groups known as the Rephaites, the Zuzites (or Zamzummites), and the Emites. The Rephaites were Rapha's descendants (Rapha means "giant" in Hebrew). The name Zuzite means "roving creatures," and Emite means "terrible ones."
When Moses sent spies to Canaan they came back with frightening reports of giants in the land. Even their crops and produce were freakish - possibly the result of genetic tampering as well. The spies brought back a cluster of grapes so large that two men had to carry them on a pole. Unusual pomegranates and figs are also mentioned in Numbers 13:23-24.
Joshua 14:15 mentions that Caleb is given Hebron. Hebron was formerly known as Kiriath Arba because Arba, the greatest of the Anakites, founded it.
1 Samuel 17 & 2 Samuel 21:15-22 mentions the defeat of Goliath and his four brothers who were Rapha's descendants from King David's time.
Bible teacher Jack Kelley points out,
"In our attention to Israel's conquest of the Promised Land, it's easy to overlook the fact that God gave the descendants of Esau and Lot (Moab and Ammon) land grants as well. Theirs were on the Eastern side of the Jordan River Valley in today's Jordan. As it was with Israel, their goal was to rid the lands they'd been given of the nephilim who dwelt there. In addition, He had the Capthorites (Philistines) wipe out the branch called the Avites (perverters) in Gaza (Deut. 2:2-23)." (www.gracethrufaith.com. "Hercules and the Nephilim")
In addition to these biblical references, other legends and extra biblical sources - including references from the Book of Enoch - mention that these giants were ravenous or constantly hungry. Because of this they became cannibals who hungered after human flesh. Ugh! If they were real were they even human? Did they have souls?
We all remember the story of Jack and the Beanstalk whose giant grunted, "Fe-Fi-Fo-Fum, I smell the blood of an Englishman..." That was just a child's fable although it is possible that some fables may be traced back centuries to real occurrences. Nevertheless, it is true that many humans were sacrificed worldwide in horrid and brutal rituals taking place in temples and pyramids.
Surprisingly, there are records of giants and brutal sacrifices in the Far East, Egypt, Britain, and Central and South America among other places. How much of it is myth or fact-based is unknown. But, as Missler says, this seems to have been a gene-pool problem for God and mankind.
Because of their allegiance to Satan or an evil being, folklore suggests that the giants were psychic and gifted at mind control, mind reading, fortune telling ("remote viewing"), healing, and levitation. They may have had something to do with the gigantic pyramids found worldwide. No wonder God warns us to stay away from such things (Deuteronomy 18).
Furthermore, no wonder God wanted all these tribes and their women and children and even their beasts destroyed, too! If there is even an element of truth in this they were dangerous, genetic freaks.
1 Samuel 17:4 tells us that Goliath, the giant human whom David killed, measured over nine feet tall. He wore a bronze helmet and a coat of mail that weighed 125 pounds. His spear weighed fifteen pounds! 2 Samuel 21:15-22 describes the battles against these Philistine giants.
Oddly today, popular UFO cults claim that aliens abduct human women and implant fetuses in their wombs who are half alien and half human. Perhaps this is another attempt at genetic manipulation by alien creatures such as those mentioned in Genesis 6. Who knows?
Is there any biblical proof for the idea of last-days genetic tampering or Nephilim on earth? Surprisingly, yes...a little. The KJV version of Daniel 2:43 says,
And whereas thou sawest iron mixed with miry clay, they shall mingle themselves with the seed of men. But, they shall not cleave one to another, even as iron is not mixed with clay.
Missler asks just who or what is mingling themselves with men's seed? Are they other than human? Does this passage suggest there is something else besides the "mingling" of sperm and eggs which could produce offspring? Could this be a form of future genetic tampering?
We just don't know for sure. But, it is fascinating to hear or read the conjectures and speculations of those who study the subject, isn't it.
Archer, Gleason. 1982. "Does 'sons of God' in Genesis 6:2 refer to angels?" p. 79. From Encyclopedia of Bible Difficulties. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan. (Sethite viewpoint).
Heiser, Michael S. (Ph.D in Hebrew Bible & Semitic Languages; Editor, Logos Bible Software). The Divine Council: www.michaelsheiser.com.
Missler, Chuck. 1997. Alien encounters: The secret behind the UFO phenomenon. Coeur d'Alene, ID: Koinonia House.
---1997. Mischievous angels or Sethites? Available from: www.khouse.org/articles/1997/110/print/
---2003. Return of the nephilim. (tape-set). Coeur d'Alene, ID: Koinonia House.
Sproul, R.C. Forbidden marriages. Available from Reformed Bible Studies at Ligonier.org. www.ligonier.org/learn/devotionals/forbidden-marriages/ (Sethite viewpoint).
Author Valorie Mays Emilio holds an MA in history from UCLA focusing upon Christian origins, and a V.O.M. Certificate in Persecuted Church Ministries from Oklahoma Wesleyan University.
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