Genesis 6:1-8 Now it came to
pass, when men began to multiply on the face of the earth, and daughters were
born to them,
2 That the sons of God saw the daughters of men, that they were beautiful; and they took wives for themselves of all whom they chose.
3 And the Lord said, My Spirit shall not strive with man forever, for he is indeed flesh; yet his days shall be one hundred and twenty years.
4 There were giants on the earth in those days, and also afterward, when the sons of God came in to the daughters of men and they bore children to them. Those were the mighty men who were of old, men of renown.
5 Then the Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.
6 And the Lord was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and He was grieved in His heart.
7 So the Lord said, I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth, both man and beast, creeping thing and birds of the air, for I am sorry that I have made them.
8 But Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord.
This has been one of the most difficult passages of Scripture in the Bible for theologians. They have always been divided in their opinions of how it should be interpreted: who are the sons of God that went in to the daughters of men, and who are the giants that were produced through their union?
Some have identified the “sons of God” as the Sethites of Genesis 4:25-26, which says that Seth was appointed by God in Abel’s stead. In time, Seth had a son named Enosh and it was then that men began to call upon the name of the Lord. Thus, the Sethites were considered a godly line that became the “sons of God” in chapter six.
Others were of the opinion that the “sons of God” were fallen angels that left their first estate (Jude 6). A third popular opinion was that the “sons of God” were dynastic rulers who established royal harems and practiced indiscriminate rape. All of these theological opinions are without any real basis of validity. The reason theologians have had such difficulty with this passage is because they were locked-in to the history and had no understanding of the mystery. God is not very interested in giving us history. He uses it mostly to cloak the mystery He wants to reveal to His saints. The word “mystery” scares some Christians. So let’s look at a few passages of Scripture concerning the mystery of God. Then we will come back and look for the mystery in Genesis chapter six.
Luke 8:9-10 Then His
disciples asked Him, saying, What does this parable mean?
10 And He said, To you it has been given to know the mysteries of the Kingdom of God, but to the rest it is given in parables, that seeing they may not see, and hearing they may not understand.
It is the will of God for the disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ to know the mysteries of the Kingdom of God. To others it is not His will. Christians who are not disciples of the Lord cannot know the mysteries of His Kingdom. That is why theologians have various opinions of Genesis chapter six. They are not disciples and cannot know the mysteries of the Scriptures – seeing they cannot see and hearing they cannot hear.
Romans 16:25-26 Now to Him
who is able to establish you according to my Gospel and the preaching of Jesus
Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery kept secret since the world
26 But now made manifest, and by the prophetic Scriptures made known to all nations, according to the commandment of the everlasting God, for obedience to the faith.
The revealing of the mystery has been held in check since the world began but is now being made manifest. It is being revealed through the prophetic Scriptures. Too many people don’t understand what the word “prophetic” means. They think it is predictive, that prophecy merely reveals what is to take place in the future. That is an old order concept. The term “prophetic Scriptures” means that the Scriptures are the channel through which the mystery is revealed in the present. Genesis chapter six is a prophetic Scripture; that is, the mystery of God is revealed through it. In fact, all Scripture is prophetic. However, when you only view them historically, whether past or future, the mystery is hidden from you.
I Corinthians 4:1 Let a man so consider us, as servants of Christ and stewards of the mysteries of God.
The Apostle Paul was a steward of the mysteries of God. I’m only going to make one comment on this verse. You can become a steward of the mysteries, too. That doesn’t mean you have to be an apostle. Remember Luke 8:10? It is given for disciples to know the mysteries of the Kingdom of God.
Colossians 1:25-27 I became a
minister according to the stewardship from God which was given to me for you,
to fulfill the Word of God,
26 The mystery which has been hidden from ages and from generations, but now has been revealed to His saints.
27 To them God willed to make known what are the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles: which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.
There are other Scriptures concerning the mysteries of God, too. Get out your Strong’s Concordance, look them up, read them, and meditate on them. It will increase your faith and bring change to your life.
Notice what Paul said about the mystery being “hidden from ages and from generations.” Ages and generations are on a time line – the mystery is hidden from “time line theologians.” Now, what does Paul say the mystery is? The mystery is Christ in you, the hope of glory. Whatever Scripture you go to the mystery of “Christ in you” is hidden in it. That is what you look for! What about our story in Genesis chapter six that describes the wickedness of man, the sons of God going in to the daughters of men producing giants, and God destroying man with a great flood? What is the mystery there? The mystery is “Christ in you, the hope of glory!” If you want to find it, brush away the history. The mystery is hidden under it.
We need to look at a few earlier verses of Scripture before we begin studying Genesis chapter six. They will help us see beyond the surface information.
Genesis 1:1 In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.
The Hebrew word for “God” here is Elohim. It is a plural word that is also used for false gods. Sometimes it is translated “mighty ones” as in Psalm 29:1. It becomes necessary to understand why a plural word is used for God and how we are to know when it refers to Him and when it refers to false gods. God is one, not many! Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one. Mark 12:29. God is one, but He manifests Himself in many ways, and every time He reveals Himself in a particular way He gives Himself a new name. The name He gives Himself reveals a particular relationship we can have with Him. There must also be a way that we can understand whether the word Elohim is referring to God or gods when it is not clearly understood from the context. There is a way; however, you will probably have to use a Hebrew Lexicon to always see the difference. When Elohim refers to God it is always connected to a singular verb. When it refers to false gods it is always connected to a plural verb. In Genesis 1:1 God (Elohim) is plural connected to the singular verb “saw”. We can easily see that Elohim is referring to God here from the context. However, it is not always that clear, which is the case in Genesis chapter six, and that is why we are studying the word Elohim.
Genesis 2:8-9 And the Lord
God planted a garden eastward in Eden,
and there He put the man whom He had formed.
9 And out of the ground the Lord God made every tree grow that is pleasant to the sight and good for food. The tree of life was also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.
These preliminary passages of Scripture are important to understanding the mystery of Genesis chapter six. So be patient and work with me. The Hebrew word for “garden” is gan, which means “a garden enclosed” - thus, a protected place of fruitfulness. Ezekiel 28:13 calls Eden the garden of God. The Garden of Eden is not a geographical place on earth. It is a spiritual place, meaning it is descriptive of the relationship that man had with God before the fall. Man was free in his relationship with God. Verse 25 says that he was naked and not ashamed. He had no walls up to God; his whole life was open and bare before Him. After the fall it was not so. When he partook of the knowledge of good and evil his nature changed. He hid himself from the presence of God and was ashamed of his nakedness.
In Genesis 3:17 there is no article before the word Adam. Therefore, that is the first place where the word adam is used as a name. In every place prior to that verse it is “the adam.” The term “the adam” refers to the nature of man. “The adam” before the fall was a nature described as the “garden of God”. After partaking of the knowledge of good and evil the nature of “the adam” was corrupt and evil. Man’s Garden of Eden relationship with God was ended. So we see that the account of Adam and Eve is not so much about two individuals as it is about the nature of man being corrupted because he partook of the knowledge of evil.
Genesis 6:1 Now it came to pass, when men began to multiply on the face of the earth, and daughters were born to them.
The Hebrew word for “men” here is adam. The word adam was the name given to the first man. It is also used at times in the sense of “mankind.” However, we find that in this verse it is not “when adam began to multiply,” but “when the adam” began to multiply. We understand, then, that this verse is not speaking of Adam the individual, but what Adam became – his nature. He partook of the tree of knowledge of good and evil and his nature changed. The adam refers to the fallen nature. Thus, everything produced from that point on carried the fallen nature. The fallen nature began to multiply on the face of the earth – not in the sense of mankind multiplying but that his fallen nature became greater and greater.
Have you ever wondered why it says that “daughters were born to them” rather than sons were born to them? What is the significance of the female gender being used here? All through Scripture women are used to depict God’s people. The Church is described as a woman, the bride of Christ. Also the false church is described as a woman, the harlot. When God’s people are unfaithful and worship something other than god, it is said that they commit adultery.
Genesis 4:26 says that when Enosh was born men began to call on the name of the Lord. Man, though, was in a fallen state. So calling on the name of the Lord does not mean that men were now holy but that they were now religious. Religion begun by man is a tree of knowledge of good and evil. The daughters born of “the adam” speaks mystically of religious groups spawned by the corrupt nature of man.
Genesis 6:2 That the sons of God saw the daughters of men, that they were beautiful; and they took wives for themselves of all whom they chose.
The term “sons of God” here has tripped up many readers of Scripture. It is what has divided many theologians in their interpretations of this chapter. The Hebrew word for “God” here is Elohim and it is connected to a plural verb, which means the “sons” here are not sons of God but sons of the corrupted nature of man. We also understand that in the Scriptures the term “son” or “sons” does not carry the exact same meaning that it does in Western culture. In our culture any male child is a son at birth. Not so in the East. Scripturally, a son is one who has taken on the nature of his father and is mature in that nature. He is of full stature. Man was fallen because he partook of the fruit of the tree of good and evil. The evil in man matured until it was fully developed, becoming sons and these sons became one with religious movements, the daughters of men.
Genesis 6:3 And the Lord said, My Spirit shall not strive with man forever, for he is indeed flesh; yet his days shall be one hundred and twenty years.
The Hebrew word for “strive” is duwn, which means “to rule or to judge.” Man is indeed flesh, meaning there is a constant downward pull in man. That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. John 3:6. The fleshly mind is enmity against God (Romans 8:7). Left to himself man will continually become more and more evil, which is the picture we have in Genesis chapter six. Notice the change in number from “they” to “he”. In verse 2 the sons of God are spoken of as “they” but in verse 3 they are referred to as “he”. They are many people of the same spirit, of the same nature – the fallen nature of man is the same in everyone. Unless God steps in man will continually go from bad to worse.
Genesis 6:4 There were giants on the earth in those days, and also afterward, when the sons of gods came in to the daughters of men and they bore children to them. Those were the mighty men who were of old, men of renown.
The Hebrew word for “giants” here is Nephilim, which means “fallen ones”. The fallen nature in its union with religion produces “the mighty men who were of old, men of renown.”
Genesis 6:5-6 Then the Lord
saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intent of
the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.
6 And the Lord was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and He was grieved in His heart.
The Lord saw that the “wickedness of the adam was great in the earth.” Human nature had progressed downwardly until every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. In New Testament language: There is none righteous, no, not one; there is none who understands; there is none who seeks after God. They have all turned aside; they have together become unprofitable; there is none who does good, no, not one. Their throat is an open tomb; with their tongues they have practiced deceit; the poison of asps is under their lips; whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness. Their feet are swift to shed blood; destruction and misery are in their ways; and the way of peace they have not known. There is no fear of God before their eyes. Romans 3:10-18.
Paul tells how this great wickedness of the adam works through the “daughters of men” (religious movements) in these last days. But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come; for men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness (religious) but denying its power. And from such people turn away! II Timothy 3:1-5.
Genesis 6:7-9 So the Lord said, I will destroy man whom I
have created from the face of the earth, both man and beast, creeping thing and
birds of the air, for I am sorry that I have made them.
8 But Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord.
9 This is the genealogy of Noah. Noah was a just man, perfect in his generations. Noah walked with God.
The name “Noah” means “rest”. His father named him Noah saying, This one will comfort us concerning our work and the toil of our hands, because of the ground which the Lord has cursed (Genesis 5:29). Noah, then, is a type of Christ who said, Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest (Matthew 11:28).
We remember the story of the birth of Jacob and Esau. When Rebekah conceived the children struggled in her womb and she enquired of the Lord. And the Lord said, “Two nations are in your womb, two peoples shall be separated from your body; one people shall be stronger than the other” (Genesis 25:21-23). Jacob and Esau represent our adamic nature, the result of man partaking of the tree of knowledge of good and evil. The evil of our nature is stronger; thus, the gravitational pull of our flesh. This is illustrated in our Genesis six account. Men (the adam) had multiplied on the earth until every imagination of his heart was only evil continually. Noah represents that part in us that desires to walk with God, and if something wasn’t done to wipe out the wicked, even Noah would become corrupt. It becomes very necessary, then, for God to eradicate in some way the adamic nature within us. Thank God He has forgiven us and we are Christians, but the adam within stills wars against us (Galatians 5:17). Have you progressed spiritually enough to become aware of the wickedness of your flesh nature? Isaiah had been a prophet for quite some time before he became aware that he was undone and had unclean lips the same as the people did (Isaiah 6:5).
Now, let’s go back to Genesis 6:7-8. Do you see why God had to destroy the adam? It was to save Noah! He was going to destroy the adam because Noah had found grace in his sight. And in the same way the Noah in us will be saved by the destruction of our adam nature. It is most interesting that the Hebrew word translated “destroy” literally means “to wipe out by washing”. The Body of Christ will be sanctified and cleansed with the washing of water by the Word (Ephesians 5:26).
“DuBose, are you saying that there wasn’t a real Noah and a real flood in that day?” No, I’m not saying that at all. Do you remember me saying at the beginning of this message that God cloaks the mystery in history, and the mystery is Christ in us, the hope of glory? In order for Christ to come forth in us, for Him to rule and reign in us, there has to be an emptying out of self. The adam that is a result of man partaking of the tree of knowledge of good and evil is in us. We are that tree and it must be rooted out. As long as the adam is in us we cannot bear good fruit. Listen to John the Baptist. Even now the axe is laid to the root of the trees. Therefore every tree which does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Matthew 3:10.
Genesis 7:18-20 The waters
prevailed and greatly increased on the earth, and the ark moved about on the
surface of the waters.
19 And the waters prevailed
exceedingly on the earth, and all the high hills under the whole heaven were
20 The waters prevailed fifteen cubits upward, and the mountains were covered.
All the mountains and hills were covered. That means that every high and exalted thing in your adamic nature will be washed and brought under the Lordship of Jesus Christ. Every other lord of your life will be brought down.
Genesis 8:15-16 Then God
spoke to Noah, saying,
16 Go out of the ark, you and your wife, and your sons and your sons’ wives with you.
Genesis 9:1 So God blessed Noah and his sons, and said to them: Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth.
After you have been washed by the flood of God, after you have been delivered from the tree of knowledge of good and evil, then God will bless you and say, “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth!”
Copyright © 2005 by Henry DuBose