Identity of the “Sons of God” Genesis 6:12

Article ID: DS510 | By: CRI Statement

ITEMS

THEORY NO. 1

THEORY NO. 2

THEORY NO. 3

Sons of God

Fallen angels

Godly line of Seth

Dynastic rulers

Daughters of men

Mortals

Line of Cain

Commoners

Sin

Marriage between supernatural and mortal

Marriage of holy to unholy


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Polygamy

Supporters

Philo, Josephus, Justin, Ambrose, Apocrypha (Enoch), Delitzsch, Driver, Cassuto, H. Morris, von Rad, Speiser

Leupold, Stigers

Aramaic targums, Rashi, Ramban, Jacob

Evidence

1. The term “sons of God” refers only to angels. (Job 1; 38:7; Ps. 29:1; 89:7)2. Jude 6-7 perhaps refers to this incident.3. It is the clear reading of the text.4. The Septuagint in Job 1 reads “angels of God.”5. Christ says angels do not marry; doesn’t say “cannot.”

1. The concept of a holy line is seemingly established.2. Hebrew indicates continuity from the previous chapter.3. The sin here becomes a common theme throughout the Pentateuch.

1. Magistrates or rulers often referred to as gods (Exod. 21:6; 22:8,9, 28; Ps. 82:1, 6)2. Kings sometimes called Sons of deities.

Problems

1. Lends mythological tone.2. Angels were not previously mentioned.3. Why is man punished by the Flood for the wickedness of angels?4. New Testament support is questionable.

1. The term “sons of God” never means this elsewhere.2. No evidence that the lines are kept totally separate. The theory does not account for Adam and Eve’s other children.3. God has not yet begun working through one line.4. The term for “men” is general. It would need further classification to be understood otherwise.5. In Noah’s time he alone was holy.

1. Kingship is not expressed in any way.2. Scripture never considers king to be sons of deity (possible exception: Ps. 2:6-7).3. Needs the connection of v. 4, but the “mighty men” are the Nephilim, not the children of the union.

From: Chronological Charts of the Old Testament, by John Walton (Zondervan)