Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Giants In the Land

“These ‘giants’ were the men of old, of renown, Genesis [6:1-4] says, and some have speculated whether the ancient myths that surround certain ‘supermen,’ for example, Hercules, the Titans, or the Gilgamesh epic may not, in fact, have some basis in this evil union. I think this is reasonable. It would explain quite a bit.”
This isn't simply a demonstration of Dyer's low view of Scripture, it demonstrates his ignorance of Scripture and the Fathers.

The Fathers will construe this (as have some Protestant commenters) as a reference to demons breeding with humans, resulting in "giants." I've read some in the modern era who would even use this as a prooftext for Neanderthals.

1. The Fathers make this connection because they are connected to Greek mythology. They were often ignorant of the OT itself. So, they are reading their Greek background into the text. This should be obvious to anybody that knows anything about the Fathers, regardless of one's rule of faith.

2. The key to understanding this narrative is, in fact, the text of Numbers 25. Indeed, we could say it's the text running from Numbers 13 to 25.

Note the flow of that text. The sons of God (Israel's men) intermarry with the sons of men (the Moabites). The result is apostasy. God destroys that generation in Israel.

In the text of Genesis
, the sons of God (Seth) intermarry with the sons of men (Cain). The result is apostasy. God destroys all but Noah and his family.

The Nephilim are in Genesis 6. Guess what?! They also appear in Numbers, chapter 13. Anak's line must be a genealogical line traceable through Noah to the days of the intermarriage between the Sethites and Cainites. Either that or there were demons intermarrying with mankind in the land of Canaan, but the Bible is remarkably silent on that.

This really isn't too hard to decipher if you bother to read the text.

And if there is, indeed, a connection with respect to the word "angel," then what would that be?

"Angel" also means "messenger"in Greek. Here's the text:

5Though you already know all this, I want to remind you that the Lord delivered his people out of Egypt, but later destroyed those who did not believe. 6And the angels who did not keep their positions of authority but abandoned their own home—these he has kept in darkness, bound with everlasting chains for judgment on the great Day. 7In a similar way, Sodom and Gomorrah and the surrounding towns gave themselves up to sexual immorality and perversion. They serve as an example of those who suffer the punishment of eternal fire.

Let's work through this:

1. God delivered his people out of Egypt. He later destroyed those who did not believe.

Comment: Numbers 25 is "the" definitive example of this for that generation. Chapter 26 picks up with the census of the 2nd generation.

2. And the messengers who did not keep their positions of authority but abandoned their own home....

That first generation consisted of "messengers" who wandered in the wilderness, led by God and carrying His tabernacle and the Ark of the Covenant, with Moses, their greatest prophet ever until Jesus and witnessing miracles continually. Yet, they were frightened by the presence of the Nephilm (Numbers 13) and consequently rejected entrance into their own home - the land of Canaan. They thereby did not keep their authority and abandoned their own home.

What was their end? They were rejected as apostates and thereby bound in chains in darkness unitl the Last Judgment - which is the fate of every apostate. This is the same generation that the writer of Hebrews uses as an example of apostasy too. Clearly, there is a special place reserved in the minds of these writers for this generation.

Sodom and Gommorah fell into sexual immorality - the same sin as the sin in Genesis 6;the same sin as Numbers 25. And Lot fell into that sin too, for where does Dyer think his daughters came from?

Here's an interesting fact, Lot's two daughters committed incest with him,getting him drunk. Lo and behold who was one of his children?

So both of Lot's daughters became pregnant by their father. 37 The older daughter had a son, and she named him Moab ; he is the father of the Moabites of today. (Genesis 19)
And with whom did the sons of God cavort and thereby finally apostatize?

While Israel was staying in Shittim, the men began to indulge in sexual immorality with Moabite women, 2 who invited them to the sacrifices to their gods. (Numbers 25)
Indeed, the whole narrative from Numbers 21 is about the interaction of Israel and Moab, leading up the end first generation in Israel, the first generation that God rejected utterly with just a few allowed to continue.

Jude even tells us this:

They have taken the way of Cain; they have rushed for profit into Balaam's error; they have been destroyed in Korah's rebellion.
Jude is clearly using the book of Numbers here. Balaam's error is in the text from Numbers I cited. Korah's rebellion (Numbers 16) follows the first exploration of Canaan in Numbers 13, where Israel is frightened by "the Nephilim."

Cain's line is the sons of men in Genesis 6, for the Flood narrative tells us how that line ended. Noah is connected by the covenant of grace to the line of Seth, not the line of Cain. So, the narrative of the Flood tells us about the end of the line of Cain. That in turn tells us something about those to whom Noah preached in his day, the spirits "in prison" to whom Christ preached through Noah, whom Peter mentioned. Namely, that's who they are - the apostates of that day, all of whom the Bible considers to be of the way of Cain, not the way of Seth; whereas Noah is considered of the way of Seth, since God preserves him and his family. These spirits in prison, therefore, aren't demons; these are human beings.

So,the key to understanding Genesis 6:1-4 and the text surrounding Jude 6 is what? The Book of Numbers, the story of the Wilderness Generation's gradual descent into apostasy, which ends with Chapter 25.

It's also worth noting who and what Korah and his sons were:

Now Korah the son of Izhar, the son of Kohath, the son of Levi, with Dathan and Abiram, the sons of Eliab, and On the son of Peleth, sons of Reuben, took action,

2and they rose up before Moses, together with some of the sons of Israel, two hundred and fifty leaders of the congregation, chosen in the assembly, men of renown.
We might note:

They and their rabble are called men of renown - like the Nephilim were considered. So, specifically, the "messengers/angels" who abdicated their authority are whom? Well, if Dyer could be bothered to actually read his Bible, that term is an allusion to the rebellion of Korah, for, they were priests, men of authority in the nation of Israel - messengers and ministers of God. They, in their rebellion, abdicate that authority.

Once again, all Dyer has to do is buckle down and read the text to make these connections. One doesn't need a commentary to figure any of this out. But because the Bible is, in his view, so utterly inscrutable he needs Holy Tradition to do the work for him, he can't be bothered. Indeed, this text seems to summarize Dyer's view of the Bible quite well:

But the men who had gone up with him said, "We can't attack those people; they are stronger than we are." 32 And they spread among the Israelites a bad report about the land they had explored. They said, "The land we explored devours those living in it. All the people we saw there are of great size. 33 We saw the Nephilim there (the descendants of Anak come from the Nephilim). We seemed like grasshoppers in our own eyes, and we looked the same to them."

1 That night all the people of the community raised their voices and wept aloud. 2 All the Israelites grumbled against Moses and Aaron, and the whole assembly said to them, "If only we had died in Egypt! Or in this desert! 3 Why is the LORD bringing us to this land only to let us fall by the sword? Our wives and children will be taken as plunder. Wouldn't it be better for us to go back to Egypt?" 4 And they said to each other, "We should choose a leader and go back to Egypt."
Apostates and Unbelievers have a way, at times, of alluding to and abusing texts that they think will substantiate their positions, when, in reality, they serve to inculpate them. I submit that Mr. Dyer has proven this for us in his comments on Jude. Not only does Jude evidently refer to him generally, his attitude to the Bible appears reflective of the reaction of the 10 spies in Canaan. He's frightened by the Nephilim, that giant, called "the Bible," so he runs to Holy Mother Church and Holy Tradition to subdue it for him - but in so doing he acts like the people and the sons of Korah, the very ones about whom Jude warns his readers. Savor the irony.


  1. Sorry, Lvka, you don't get to post here anymore.

    Bye bye!

    1. The text says nothing, not a word about the fall of angels.

    2. The text says nothing, not a word about monks.

    3. The text says nothing, not a word about the Eastern Orthodox Church.

    4. Discussions about "lowering into the material realm" are remarkably Neo-Platonic and Gnostic. Nice to see where your true loyalities lie. That's a real timesaver.

    When you have an actual exegetical argument, I'll be glad to let it pass. Until you do, don't bother trying.

  2. To say that the text doesn't say anything about Angels is curious, since a simple Scripture-search for the phrase "sons of God" will retrieve very many places (verses) reffering to the Holy Angels.

    To say that Angels don't have anything in common with monks is also interesting, given Jesus' own words in Matthew 22:30 and Mark 12:25.

  3. The first of your two comments was deleted because it has nothing to do with exegeting this text.

    To say that the text doesn't say anything about Angels is curious, since a simple Scripture-search for the phrase "sons of God" will retrieve very many places (verses) reffering to the Holy Angels.

    We have only one letter from Jude. So, if you think that "sons of God" refers to angels in Jude, you'll need to provide an exegetical argument for it from Jude.

    To say that Angels don't have anything in common with monks is also interesting, given Jesus' own words in Matthew 22:30 and Mark 12:25.

    Matt 22:30 refers to marriage and being given in marriage in the Resurrection. It says nothing about monks. Care to make any more obviously false statements?

    I'll give you one more chance before permabanning you.

  4. There are three refferences in the Book of Job:

    Job 1:6
     ¶Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan came also among them.

    Job 2:1
     ¶Again there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan came also among them to present himself before the LORD.

    Job 38:7
     When the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy?

    And one in Daniel:

    Daniel 3:25
     He answered and said, Lo, I see four men loose, walking in the midst of the fire, and they have no hurt; and the form of the fourth is like the Son of God.

    And the two Gospel-passages imply that the Holy Angels do not marry. Thus, my simple comparison between them and monks and all that chose to preserve their virginity, as the Lord advices us in Matthew 19:10-12 and as St. Paul advises us, both by word, in 1 Corinthians 7:26, 29; as well as by deed, in 1 Corinthians 9:4-6.

  5. As for Jude, given his famous 1 Enoch 1:9 quote from Jude 1:14-15, as well as his overall insistance on angelic beings: Jude 1:6, 9, it's only reasonable to interpret his words having in our minds the same view of the interpretation of the Genesis passage that he himself had in his mind whilst writing down these very things: namely that of 1 Enoch.