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Genesis 6:2

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Who are the sons of men

Who are the sons of men

Ancient texts and mythological stories often talk of gods or semi-gods mating with humans either by force or persuasion. it is possible that this story is a refutation of these myths in order to set the record straight that these “sons of god” are merely humans and deserve the cataclysmic flood to follow.
three historical views:
angels
human judges or rulers
descendants of Seth
Angels: God is taken as a nown. meaning there is a contrast between those of the heavenly realm and those of the earthly realm (daughters of men)
this is the oldest opinion known
was the opinion of early christian writers and is talked about in 1 Enoch 6-11 (apochrapha)
1 Peter 3:19–20 NASB95
in which also He went and made proclamation to the spirits now in prison, who once were disobedient, when the patience of God kept waiting in the days of Noah, during the construction of the ark, in which a few, that is, eight persons, were brought safely through the water.
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2 Peter 2:4 NASB95
For if God did not spare angels when they sinned, but cast them into hell and committed them to pits of darkness, reserved for judgment;
Jude 6 NASB95
And angels who did not keep their own domain, but abandoned their proper abode, He has kept in eternal bonds under darkness for the judgment of the great day,
Problems:
6:1-8 talks about humanity
there is no mention of a heavenly group to this point
Human judges or rulers
elohim (God) has a broader meaning, sometimes used for judges in the OT
Psalm 82:1 NASB95
God takes His stand in His own congregation; He judges in the midst of the rulers.
ps
Psalm 82:6–7 NASB95
I said, “You are gods, And all of you are sons of the Most High. “Nevertheless you will die like men And fall like any one of the princes.”
ps 82
Here the mortality of the judges is stressed in spite of their lofty assignment. in this case the Nephilim are not their children but rather were their contemporaries
this refers to the line of Cain. 6:1-8 describes how this emerging Caninite kingship achieved its evil endeavors and God’s judgment.
Problem: there is no evidence for a group of kings being referred to as “sons of god”. Chapters 4 and 5 contrast the two lines of descent from Adam, the Canites and Sethites. relates how the two lines intermarry, resulting in a community of uprecedented wickedness.
Godly men
Augustine and the reformers interpreted the “sons of God” as a reference to godly men, that is the righteous lineage of Seth.
What was God’s response
Who are the Nephilim
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Numbers 13:33 NASB95
“There also we saw the Nephilim (the sons of Anak are part of the Nephilim); and we became like grasshoppers in our own sight, and so we were in their sight.”
here this may be figurative as the spies were scared
refers to a class of people = the Fallen Ones
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