Who Were the Nephilim?
Genesis 6:4, which describes the time before Noah and the Great Flood, is one of the strangest verses in the Bible. It says:
There were giants in the earth in those days, and also after that, when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bore children to them; the same became mighty men that were of old, the men of renown.
Giants? Sons of God? Daughters of men? Did we read that right? What is going on here? The Bible does not offer details, but the Book of Enoch – which at one time was considered part of the Bible – provides plenty.
According to Enoch, God appointed angels known as Watchers to oversee mankind. The Watchers were supposed to be benevolent, but instead a large group of Watchers lusted after human women and impregnated them. The offspring of these angel/human unions were hideous giants, also referred to as Nephilim, who laid waste to human beings and to each other. These abominations were the impetus behind God’s bringing on the Great Flood.
Were the Watchers the “sons of God” to which the Bible refers? Some say “sons of God” simply means the descendants of Adam and Eve’s “good” son Seth. But Reverend Stephen Robinson, who researched and authored a detailed exegetical analysis of Genesis 6:1-10 in 2004, concluded that the “sons of God” refers to angels who assumed human form as written about extensively in the Book of Enoch.
And the Nephilim? You would think the Great Flood would have killed them off. However, the Bible contains later references to giants – Goliath, for example, and the inhabitants of Canaan before the Hebrews arrived – and history also tells of encounters with races having larger-than-normal stature.
Ancient Aliens enthusiasts have a completely different take on all this. They say Genesis 6 refers to extraterrestrial visitors who interbred with human beings.
All well and good for an interesting conversation. But talk of angels, giants, and extraterrestrials is meaningless without hard archaeological evidence. (No, those photos on the Internet of recently unearthed giant skeletons are not evidence – they are doctored, every one of them.) We have not yet found authentic Nephilim remains... or have we?
Biblical researcher John Denton claims archaeological evidence of the Nephilim has been staring us in the face all along. He believes Neanderthal man and the Nephilim may have been one and the same. Neanderthals lived at the same time as modern man. They were hideous giants of sorts, having larger bones, muscles, and facial features. It may surprise you that they also had larger brains. As Denton might ask – what do you get when you cross an angel with a beautiful woman? A Neanderthal!
Researchers like L. A. Marzulli and Brien Foerster have studied 2,000-year-old elongated skulls found in Paracas, Peru and observed that their facial features are larger than those of normal human skulls. Further, and more surprisingly, DNA tests performed on the skulls (as well as samples of red or blonde hair on some skulls) reveal links to the Middle East and Europe, and no links at all to the Americas. Marzulli believes these findings support his long-standing hypothesis that the Paracas people were Nephilim who fled their native lands and somehow made their way to South America.
One thing is for certain – history, science, nature, and the Bible are filled with mystery. We do not have all the answers, but we must continue to ask questions.