Genesis 6: 4
The Nephilim were on the earth in those days- and also afterward (Cp. Numbers 13: 33a)- when the sons of God went to the daughters of men and had children by them. They were the heroes of old, men of renown.
NOTE: Heroes would seem to indicate valor, bravery and honor and not depravity, wickedness or ungodliness. This could very well explain the mythologies, magical pantheons and demi-gods of civilizations across the planet, though in some corrupted form or another.
Genesis 14: 5
In the fourteenth year, Kedorlaomer and the kings allied with him went out and defeated the Rephaites in Ashteroth Karnaim, the Zuzites in Ham [Egypt], the Emites in Shaveh Kiriathaim, and the “Horites” in the hill country of Seir, as far as Paran near the desert.
Numbers 13: 22a, 32b-33a
They went up through the Negev and came to Hebron; where Ahiman, Sheshai and Talmai, the descendants of Anak lived. They said, “The land we explored devours those living in it. All the people we saw there are of great size. We saw the Nephilim there (the descendants of Anak come from the Nephilim).”
Joshua 11: 21-22
At that time Joshua went and destroyed the Anakites from the hill country; from Hebron, Debir and Anab, from all the hill country of Judah and from all the hill country of Israel. Joshua totally destroyed them and their towns. No Anakites were left in Israelite territory; only in Gaza, Gath and Ashdod did any survive.
Judges 1: 10
After that, the men of Judah went down to fight against the Canaanites living in the hill country, the Negev and the western foothills. They advanced against the Canaanites living in Hebron (formerly called Kriath Arba) and defeated Sheshai, Ahiman and Talmai (Cp. Joshua 15: 14).
Deuteronomy 2: 10
(The Emites used to live there- a people strong and numerous, and as tall as the Anakites. Like the Anakites, they too were considered Rephaites but the Moabites called them Emites. (That too was considered a land of the Rephaites, who used to live there; but the Ammonites called them Zamzummites. They were a people strong and numerous, and as tall as the Anakites).
NOTE: So far we have the Anakites (descended from the Nephilim, then Rephaites (called “Emites” by the Moabites), and lastly, Rephaites who were also called “Zamzummites” by the Ammonites.
Deuteronomy 3: 10, 13b
(Only Og king of Bashan was left of the remnant of the Rephaites. His bed was made of iron and was more than thirty feet long and six feet wide. It is still in Rabbah of the Ammonites. The whole region of Argob in Bashan used to be known as a land of the Rephaites).
Deuteronomy 9: 1-2
Hear, O Israel. You are now about to cross the Jordan to go in and dispossess nations greater and stronger than you, with large cities that has walls up to the sky. The people are strong and tall- Anakites!
2 Samuel 21: 15-16, 18-22
Once again there was a battle between the Philistines and Israel. David went down with his men to fight against the Philistines, and he became exhausted. And Ishbi-Benob, one of the descendants of Rapha (“Rephaites”), whose bronze spearhead weighed three hundred shekels (7.5 lbs.), and was armed with a new sword, said he would kill David. In the course of time, there was another battle with the Philistines, at Gob. At that time Sibbecai the Hushathite killed Saph, one of the descendants of Rapha (“Rephaites”). In another battle with the Philistines at Gob, Elhanan son of Jaare-Oregim the Bethlehemite killed Goliath the Gittite, who had a spear with a shaft like a weaver’s rod. In still another battle, which took place at Gath, there was a huge man with six fingers on each hand and six toes on each foot- twenty-four in all. He was also descended from Rapha. When he taunted Israel, Jonathan son of Shimei, David’s brother, killed him. These four were descendants of Rapha in Gath, and they all fell at the hands of David and his men.
NOTE: Elhanan son of Jair (Jaare-Oregim the Bethlehemite) didn’t kill Goliath but rather his brother Lahmi (Cp. 1 Chronicles 20: 5).
COMMENTARY: There are many scoffers who think of giants as some kind of “tall tales” (no pun intended) and fabrications spun of an overactive, imaginative mind that has no more basis in reality than bedtimes stories told to little children with visions of fairies, elves, leprechauns, and magical pixie dust. Yet, for these rational thinkers it is easier to accept Area 51 conspiracies regarding classified U.S. intelligence reports of contact with aliens from outer space than the plausible biblical mention of a group of beings that were first mentioned as present in the antediluvian period [days of Noah], millennia ago. Apparently they were not destroyed by the ‘Great Deluge’ or at least not all of them, and they seemed to settle down in certain areas within the land of Canaan. Either the “Nephilim” are the offspring of copulation between ones called the “sons of God” and human females (‘daughters of men’) or they were already on Earth when this kind of thing started happening. It is possible that the root “naphal” (to fall) depicts this group; hence Nephilim means “fallen ones.” The “sons of God” are another group of celestial beings are either their progenitors or competitors in some way.
The narrative in Genesis 6 doesn’t really give the reader any significant trail of bread crumbs to follow. Just like in any mythical account there is always the battle between the forces of good and evil and it may very well be the case here. The Nephilim are never involved in any fighting but rather others like the sons of Anak (‘Anakites’), the Rephaites, Zamzummites, or Emites. Perhaps the goal of Nephilim is to introduce some kind of non-human genetic strain into human DNA, a kind of eugenics experiment to duplicate the ‘genesis’ creation after their own kind and image; just as Elohim created man in his own image and likeness. This could also explain why the Israelites were told to annihilate the inhabitants of various Canaanite tribes because of the contamination from the Anakites (first order of the Nephilim). The wickedness of these other nations (Cp. Deuteronomy chapter 9) had more to do with idolatry (worshipping other gods) than anything else because that theme is the most frequently occurring in the Old Testament canon (TANAKH). Greek mythology depicts the battle of the Titans against Zeus and his family so perhaps Nephilim battle Elohim, if not directly, then through the Israelites on one side and the other gigantic races who inhabited and perhaps comingled their seed among the indigenous Canaanite inhabitants, on the opposing side. Be that as it may, there doesn’t appear to be any further mention of them, or rather their mutated offspring since the times of King David.
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May 28, 2013