Tag Archives: sons of God

Matthew 24 and the Days of Noah Once Again

I recently added this to my FAQ, but I thought I’d post it here as well.

Do you think Matthew 24:37-38 is a prophecy about the return of nephilim or has anything to do with Genesis 6:1-4?

The short answer to both is no. (I also don’t think it has anything to do with UFOs or aliens). Back around the year 2000 or so I suspected that was the case, but I know better now. It’s not a text-driven argument or position. I blogged about this (and Dan 2:43 as well) back in 2015. There are several problems with the idea, but I’ll summarize my thoughts here.

There are several reasons why Matt 24:37-38 does not connect back to Gen 6:1-4. The sons of God are mentioned nowhere in Matt 24. There isn’t a whiff of divine-human transgression. Their presence is assumed on the basis of the phrase “marrying and giving in marriage,” but that’s actually where the idea breaks down. If Matthew wanted readers to think about Genesis 6:1-4 in these comments, he’d use the Greek terms in the Septuagint of LXX for what the sons of God and mortal women were doing. Matthew doesn’t do that even once. The LXX reads ἔλαβον ἑαυτοῖς γυναῖκας ἀπὸ πασῶν, ὧν ἐξελέξαντο (lit: “they took for themselves women from all which they chose”). Matthew doesn’t use any of these terms. Matthew’s Greek for “marrying and giving in marriage” is γαμοῦντες καὶ γαμίζοντες (lit: “marrying and giving in marriage”). Even if you can’t read Greek you can look at the words and know they aren’t the same as Gen 6 LXX.The other significant problem is that saying Matthew 24:37-38 is about a repeat of Genesis 6:1-4 requires you to ignore parts of what Matthew describes — or deliberately not see the disconnections with Genesis 6:1-4. Here is the full list of what Matthew says will be going on when Jesus returns that was going on in the days of Noah:

– eating and drinking
– marrying and giving in marriage
– not watching / being unaware

Only one of those (conceivably — but incorrectly) could be associated with Gen 6:1-4 — the “marrying and giving in marriage.” The others have no association whatsoever with the supernaturalist aspects of Gen 6:1-4. So why impose the supernaturalist character of Gen 6 onto what Matthew says? It’s an arbitrary decision, and one made incoherent and unsustainable by the lack of any connection to the LXX of Gen 6:1-4. When biblical writers want their readers to cross-reference an OT passage with what they are saying, they create connections. Matthew doesn’t do that even once.

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Reversing Hermon Logos Bible Software Edition Now Available for Pre-Order

Well, it was just a few days ago that my latest book, Reversing Hermon: Enoch, the Watchers, and the Forgotten Mission of Jesus Christ, became available on Kindle. Now the book is available for pre-order for Logos Bible Software users. Make it part of your biblical studies data mine!

Enjoy!

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The Origin of Sin in Irenaeus and Jewish Pseudepigrapha (Enoch, Jubilees, Etc.)

Readers of this blog know that several people who’ve commented in the past about my views on Romans 5:12 have thought that plain reading of the text out of step with traditional Christianity. Below is an article (not publicly accessible) that shows that Irenaeus wrote several things that are consistent with my take (humans are sinners estranged from God because of their own guilt, not Adam’s) and which are in step with the 2nd Temple Jewish view of how evil/sin proliferated throughout the human race due to the sin of the Watchers (“sons of God”) in Gen 6:1-4.

D. R. Schultz, “The Origin of Sin in Irenaeus and Jewish Pseudepigraphical Literature,” Vigiliae Christianae, Vol. 32: 3 (Sep., 1978), pp. 161-190

In a nutshell, the view of all this that’s consistent with the biblical text taken in its own context is that sin began in Eden (the first divine and human rebellions), which estranged humanity from God because all humans were then cut off from the divine presence and would invariably and inevitably sin. However, the worldwide depravity known to Christian theology  occurs in the wake of the sin of the Watchers (which has a “causative” effect in the sense that 2nd Temple material views the sin of the Watchers, by example and by design, as a catalyst to human rebellion on a grand scale). The proliferation of sin and a human’s individual guilt before God is not laid at the feet of Adam.

I would point out that, in the stream of orthodox Christian theology, Irenaeus was obviously no heretic.

Though the article by Schultz is not publicly accessible, the PhD dissertation he wrote upon which that journal article is based is:

D. R. Schultz, “The Origin of Sin in Irenaeus and Jewish Pseudepigraphical Literature,” PhD thesis, McMaster University, 1972 (216 pp)

*Note: the link will ask you to save the file named “full text” — just save it and then open and rename it.  It’s all there and web-accessible.

Here are some screen shots of the shorter article (click on them for emlarged viewing):

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The Ancient Near Eastern Context for Genesis 6:1-4

Hat tip to Terry the Censor for finding the Amar Annus article to which I alluded on the Conspirinormal podcast:

Amar Annus, “On the Origin of Watchers: A Comparative Study of the Antediluvian Wisdom in Mesopotamian and Jewish Traditions,” Journal for the Study of the Pseudepigrapha vol. 19:4 (2010): 277-320.

As I noted in the comments:

This article deals a death blow to any non-supernatural (or non-mythic as some prefer) interpretation in the sense that, if you care about interpreting the Bible in context, no human interpretation of the sons of God can work. It violates every point of context. Annus’ article is the most current study on the Mesopotamian apkallu. It supersedes ALL preceding work on this subject. That means your standard academic commentaries that all pastors are using are hopelessly out of date and mis-informed. Anyone commenting on Gen 6:1-4 hereafter will have to account for this article or else be academically inept.

Read it and be amazed. This is what comparative analysis is supposed to look like. The Sethite view was incoherent before. Now it’s become the position for ostriches.

This is the sort of material that I interact with in The Unseen Realm. I’m trying to take serious, up-to-date scholarship on the weird passages of the Bible and the supernatural worldview of its writers and make it decipherable to non-specialists — while synthesizing it all. Everyone says their new book is different and revelatory. In this case, the claim is real. Those of you who’ve read the first draft way back know I’m not kidding. You’ll never read your Bible the same way again.

 

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