The Sons of God and Daughters of Men
Some have identified the “sons of God” in Genesis 6:2 as fallen angelic beings who left their natural habitation to live on earth with human women. The theory goes on to claim that the giants of Genesis 6:4 are the hybrid offspring of this unnatural union. This theory cannot be true for several reasons:
- In the creation account, the Bible is very clear in pointing out that all of the animal life was created after (according to) its own kind. This wording is not incidental but makes an important point. One species of animal cannot mate with another. It is an impossibility. While there may be variations of kinds within a certain species, such as different breeds of dogs or cattle or cats, still a dog is a dog, a cow is a cow, and a cat is a cat. Even within similar kinds of animals, there are found species that cannot crossbreed. For instance, starlings do not breed with crows but both are birds, lions do not breed with house cats, etc. This is the most powerful argument there is against the theory of evolution. Science can only prove what the Bible has taught from the beginning; reproduction of life is only after its own kind.
Can we say then, that mankind, who was a special creation of God, has an unnatural ability to breed and reproduce with any being outside of the human race? Especially a spiritual being? As we have no Scriptural basis for doing so, we cannot. To do so is to violate Scripture, for it is clearly stated that “male and female He created them”.
- When the Lord Jesus was questioned about whose wife the woman who married seven brothers would be in the resurrection (see Matt. 22:23-33), He explained some facts to them. First, He pointed out that they did not understand the Scripture nor the power of God, “For in the resurrection they neither marry nor are given in marriage but are like the angels of God in heaven” (Matt. 22:30). This tells us that angels were not created for the purpose of reproduction as mankind was. The angel theory of the sons of God in Genesis 6:2 sometimes claims that there is a difference because Christ was talking about good angels here and the sons of God in Genesis are fallen angels. While it is true that there is a difference between good angels and fallen angels (demons), we must remember that the fallen angels were once good angels in heaven with God. Their fall may have changed them into demons but how could it change them into something close enough to a human being to produce children with a human woman? Only men can have children by women, not angels, whether they are holy or evil.
- The Bible gives us a genealogy of Adam from Seth. Until the time of Noah, we read of men begetting children but there is not one word about angels at all. Concerning His judgment, because of the evil that had become so widespread, the Bible says that “the Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great on the earth” and that He was sorry “that He made man on the earth” (see Gen. 6:5-7). Not one word of an angel of any kind is found here, so how can we add angels when the Scriptures do not mention them and the context points to the sons of God as being men (see Gen. 4:25-26).
In verses 1-2 of chapter six, we find the term sons of God that is in question here. In verse 3 “the Lord said ‘My Spirit will not strive with man forever, for he is indeed flesh’”. Only by a theory can we change the meaning to angels, who are spiritual in nature, when the Bible consistently mentions man in the context.
- The “sons of God are angels” theory is based on a wrong premise. It says that only those beings that have been especially created, such as angels and Adam, are ever referred to as “sons of God.” But, this is not accurate as the Hebrew word translated God in Genesis 6:2 is Elohim which is normally used in reference to the Almighty Creator, but in some cases it is also used in reference to human leaders. In Exodus 21:6 it is translated “judges”, meaning men who acted in God’s name. Psalm 82:1 gives us God standing in the congregation of the mighty to judge among the gods (elohim or mighty ones). Verse 6 reads “I said ‘you are gods (elohim or mighty ones) and all of you are children (sons) of the Most High God.’” These verses refer to the rulers of Israel and are a plea to them to quit showing partiality to the wicked and to defend the helpless. These are rulers of Israel, God’s representatives, who will be judged for their dereliction of duty. So then, the term “sons of God” is in fact used in reference to men in the Old Testament. Of course, in the New Testament we can find many instances where believers are called the sons or children of God.
The sons of God in Genesis 6:2 were men, who called upon the name of the Lord (believers), but took for themselves unbelieving wives (daughters of men). Their children, being influenced by their unbelieving mothers did not call on the name of the Lord, but they did became mighty leaders on the earth. Tribal chiefs and city kings ruled as tyrants with much violence and wickedness, which spread throughout the earth. Because of their long life span before the flood, those with established power would have had a great and continuing influence on society at large. So God brought the flood to destroy man from the face of the earth. Because of the powerful influence that ungodly women have on the home and society, Israel was commanded not to intermarry with the heathen nations around them. In this vein, they were particularly told not to let their sons marry the daughters of the pagan nations because they would turn their hearts away from following the Lord to serve their false gods, which would result in bringing judgment on the nation (see Ex. 34:14-16; Deut. 7:3-4; Josh. 23:12; Judg. 3:5-8; I Kin. 11:1-11; 16:30-33; etc.). As the historical experiences of Israel are recorded in Scripture for us to learn from (I Cor. 10:11; see vvs 1-14), the Church today should take heed not to be unequally yoked with the world which walks after the “god of this world” who is also called “the prince of the power of the air” and “the devil,” and “Satan, which deceiveth the whole world” (see II Cor. 4:3-4; Eph. 2:1-2; Rev. 12:9).