Posted by: davidbowerkingwood | April 28, 2014

The Mysterious Nephilim, by David Bower

The Nephilim of the Old Testament, a Little Background

In Genesis 6 we are introduced to a class of humanoid men called the Nephilim; in verse 4 we read, “The Nephilim were on the earth in those days—and also afterward—when the sons of God went to the daughters of humans and had children by them. They were the heroes of old, men of renown.”

The exact nature of the Nephilim has been debated for a long time and I’m under no illusion that this one article will finally settle the matter; it is an expression of what I believe to be the most likely explanation of the limited information that has been provided in the Bible.

If you keep in mind there were 1,656 years between the creation of Adam and the flood, I believe it is reasonable to conclude that the afterward, referenced in verse 4, was part of that time before the flood, not after the flood. A reference to heroes of old could well mean the time a thousand years before the flood.

I have addressed the subject of the identity of the “sons of God” in other articles and will not open that discussion again here. I will simply conclude that they were a limited number of the fallen angels who had followed Satan at the time of the angelic rebellion in heaven. The Nephilim were the children of these angelic fathers and human mothers and had DNA of both the fallen angels and human women. They had a corrupted DNA and were part of a Satanic effort to thwart God’s plan for a human kinsman redeemer who would defeat Satan.

This was a major attack on God’s plan for mankind’s redemption and had to be dealt with in a manner that would put the matter to rest once and for all. This, of course, was accomplished by the flood which killed the entire human population of the earth except for eight people, Noah and his family.

It has been estimated by some statisticians that the earth’s population was close to 9 billion people at the time of the flood so one can see from that number the severity of God’s judgment on humanity and the earth.

Nephilim After the Flood?

If the purpose of the flood was to eliminate corrupted DNA then how could it be that there were Nephilim after the flood; did some of them survive that judgment or did they come from some other source perhaps? While there are a number of popular theories, let us examine the Bible’s revelation on that subject and see if we can find an explanation.

First, what does the Bible say about Nephilim after the flood? As we examine the Old Testament we discover that there is only one reference to the Nephilim after the flood and that is found in Number 13:31-33 where it is written, “31 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.”

An important consideration on the use of the word Nephilim is its context; this was used as part of a “bad report” given to try and frighten the Israelites into not going into the land. As I understand it there is no justification from the Hebrew to think the Nephilim were anything but normal sized men.

Were the Nephilim Giants?

It was not until the creation of a Greek translation of the Old Testament from the Hebrew, the Septuagint that the term gigantes, giants, appeared in verse 4. Since the Septuagint was the basis for the Latin translation called the Vulgate, it is to be expected that this concept would be carried forward into the Latin translation. There is no real justification in the Hebrew word, gibbowr, for such a translation. The Hebrew word used signifies they were strong men, brave men, mighty men from the transliterated root word gibbowr.

In most translations, the Hebrew word is translated, heroes, mighty men, mighty heroes, and powerful men, by way of example, not giants. I believe it safe to say the people of great size were descendents of Noah and his family and did not contain the least particle of corrupted DNA.

I do not believe the use of this word in this context is sufficient evidence to say God failed in His efforts to eliminate the corrupted DNA; after all, these words were part of a bad report. I would, on the other hand, say all of the corrupted DNA was destroyed by the flood and the fallen angels who did this were confined to the Abyss where they remain to this day. I have a high degree of confidence that God will accomplish whatever He sets out to do.

By way of conclusion then, I believe the flood wiped out every last bit of corrupted DNA and that the fallen angels who had fathered the Nephilim were, and still are, confined to the Abyss. The giants encountered in the land were simply big descendents of Noah and his family.

There are volumes of speculation on the flood, the sons of god, and the Nephilim; you can enter any of those in a search engine and come up with a large number of articles.



  1. another fascinating post…. I enjoy all of your posts, and print them out so I can read them over and over …. I know my daughter Kirsten (Park) really misses her church there in Kingwood…. Thank you for your writings……. 


    • Virginia,

      Thank you for your encouraging comments, I appreciate your taking the time.



  2. Thank you David. I always look forward to your posts.



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