Were the Nephilim sterile? Did they have offspring?

by AuldSoul 42 Replies latest watchtower bible

  • AuldSoul
    *** it-2 p. 492 Nephilim ***
    Increased Wickedness. “The mighty ones who were of old, the men of fame” that were produced by these marriages, were not men of fame with God, for they did not survive the Flood, as did Noah and his family. They were “Nephilim,” bullies, tyrants, who no doubt helped to make conditions worse. Their angelic fathers, knowing the construction of the human body and being able to materialize, were not creating life, but lived in these human bodies and, cohabiting with women, brought forth children. Their children, “mighty ones,” were therefore unauthorized hybrids. Apparently the Nephilim did not, in turn, have children.

    This is what the WTS says, what does the Bible say?

    Numbers 13:30-33—Then Ca´leb tried to still the people toward Moses and went on to say: “Let us go up directly, and we are bound to take possession of it, because we can surely prevail over it.” 31 But the men who went up with him said: “We are not able to go up against the people, because they are stronger than we are.” 32 And they kept on bringing forth to the sons of Israel a bad report of the land that they had spied out, saying: “The land, which we passed through to spy it out, is a land that eats up its inhabitants; and all the people whom we saw in the midst of it are men of extraordinary size. 33 And there we saw the Neph´i·lim, the sons of A´nak, who are from the Neph´i·lim; so that we became in our own eyes like grasshoppers, and the same way we became in their eyes.”

    Now, the WTS says this was not a literal usage. However, the term Nephilim was used twice. In fact, (1) a specific tribe is mentioned, "the sons of Anak" and (2) the ancestry of this tribe is attributed to the Nephilim. It was apparently a fact with which the people were fairly familiar as no one needed to explain it on any other occasion. Also, the account recorded in Deuteronomy found it unecessary to repeat the term Nephilim, on the occasion of their going up across the Jordan.

    Deuteronomy 9:1-3—“Hear, O Israel, you are today crossing the Jordan to go in and dispossess nations greater and mightier than you, cities great and fortified to the heavens, 2 a people great and tall, the sons of An´a·kim, about whom you yourself have known and you yourself have heard it said, ‘Who can make a firm stand before the sons of A´nak?’ 3 And you well know today that Jehovah your God is crossing before you. A consuming fire he is. He will annihilate them, and he himself will subdue them before you; and you must dispossess them and destroy them speedily, just as Jehovah has spoken to you.

    But, here these sons of Anakim are referred to as a people "about whom you yourself have known." There was good reason why a nation of people so large would be well known, and why their ancestry would be public knowledge—even reaching into the ears of the slaves of Pharoah. And certainly they would have been well known to the vast mixed company of Egyptians who left with the Israelites.

    Why does the WTS say, "Apparently the Nephilim did not, in turn, have children?" The Bible nowhere makes that statement, but as we can see it clearly states the contrary. The sons of Anak are declared as being "from the Nephilim." As far as I know, there is only one way that can occur.

    An interesting research project involves tracing out Gath, Anak, Ashdod, and Rephaim. Reading every instance of these in the Bible, I am now convinced that the Nephilim were sires of children and that Goliath is their most famed descendant.

    Of course, that would mean the Hebrew word used in the flood account for "whole inhabited earth" was mistranslated and only meant "region" or "land" or "city" and that the destruction described was on a smaller scale than that related to us today. Either that, or these Nephilim were extremely gifted swimmers and could tread water for quite a few days. Otherwise, the Anakim could not have existed as descendants of the Nephilim. Neither could the Rephaim, who were related to the Anakim.


  • IP_SEC

    The society (and other fundie groups) say the flood was needed to destroy the non human hybrid bloodline of the nefilim. The messiah would have to be a pure son of adam to make the ransom valid. If the nefilim were sterile why worry about the blood line? In time they would die, not having perpetuated the hybrid genes.

  • greendawn

    Auld Soul I suspect there is a mix up somewhere according to the Bible the Nephilim whoever they were did not go in the ark so they couldn't have survived, Biblically the whole earth or the inhabited part of it got flooded.

    Having the Nephilim after the flood doesn't fit in unless the word means giants and can be applied to any unusually tall races. In which case we have the pre flood giants and the post flood ones being totally unrelated.

    Mainstream religions don't believe that angels have sexual desires being immaterial, and that they came to earth to pick up women.

  • IP_SEC

    Also if I remember correctly, most religions equate the nefilim (those who fell) with the fallen angels. Not some hybrid human/angel race.

  • Hellrider

    I think IP is right. From what I remember, the (rebellious) angels came to earth and took on giant bodies, and porked all the ladies. Cause ladies like big guys. When the flood came, the rebellious angels just left their huge gigantic bodies, and went back into the sky, while their women and kids were left to die in the flood, while these bad-guy angels were heard yelling from the sky "screw you bitch,not a penny of child support from me, now swim, woman!". Jehoba didn`t like this, so he kicked them down into hell. I have never heard that before though, that the flood was because the giants kids (were the kids also big?) had to be killed off. I didn`t think the whole earth had to be flooded for the giant-kids to die. They must have been really tall.

  • Honesty

    Were the Nephilim sterile? Not according to Scripture

    Did they have offspring? According to Scripture, yes.

    Num 13:33 (HCSB) We even saw the Nephilim there.” (The offspring of Anak were descended from the Nephilim. ) “To ourselves we seemed like grasshoppers, and we must have seemed the same to them.”

    Various views as to the origin and identity of the Nephilim abound:

    Genisis 6:4. There were giants in the earth
    nephilim, from naphal, "he fell." Those who had apostatized or fallen from the true religion. The Septuagint translate the original word by ???a?te?, which literally signifies earth-born, and which we, following them, term giants, without having any reference to the meaning of the word, which we generally conceive to signify persons of enormous stature. But the word when properly understood makes a very just distinction between the sons of men and the sons of God; those were the nephilim, the fallen earth-born men, with the animal and devilish mind. These were the sons of God, who were born from above; children of the kingdom, because children of God. Hence we may suppose originated the different appellatives given to sinners and saints; the former were termed ???a?te?, earth-born, and the latter, a????, i.e. saints, persons not of the earth, or separated from the earth. Adam Clarke Commentary

    Easton's Bible Dictionary

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    Additional Resources
    • International Standard Bible Encyclopedia
    » Nephilim
    Hebrew - Nephilim
    Nephilim -

    (Genesis 6:4; Numbers 13:33, RSV), giants, the Hebrew word left untranslated by the Revisers, the name of one of the Canaanitish tribes. The Revisers have, however, translated the Hebrew gibborim, in Genesis 6:4, "mighty men."

    The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia

    Sons of God

    Some commentators hold that by "sons of God" is to be understood the pious race descended from Seth, and by "daughters of men" the daughters of worldly men. These commentators connect the passage with Genesis 4:25, where the race of Seth is characterized as the worshippers of Yahweh and is designated as a whole, a seed (compare Deuteronomy 14:1; 32:5; Hosea 1:10 (Hebrew 2:1)). They consider the restricted meaning they put upon "men" as warranted by the contrast (compare Jeremiah 32:20; Isaiah 43:4), and that as the term "daughters" expresses actual descent, it is natural to understand "sons" in a similar sense. The phrase "took wives," they contend also, supports the ethical view, being always used to signify real and lasting marriages, and cannot, therefore, be applied to the higher spirits in their unholy desire after flesh. On this view Genesis 6:1-4 are an introduction to the reason for the Flood, the great wickedness of man upon the earth (6:5). It is held that nothing is said in 6:4 of a race of giants springing from the union of angels with human wives (see paragraph 2, below), and that the violence which is mentioned along with the corruption of the world (6:11) refers to the sin of the giants.

    (2) Most scholars now reject this view and interpret "sons of God" as referring to supernatural beings in accordance with the meaning of the expression in the other passages. They hold that Deuteronomy 14:1, etc., cannot be regarded as supporting the ethical interpretation of the phrase in a historical narrative. The reference to Jeremiah 32:20, etc., too, is considered irrelevant, the contrast in these passages being between Israel and other nations, not, as here, between men and God. Nor can a narrower signification (daughters of worldly men) be attached to "men" in Genesis 6:2 than to "men" in 6:1, where the reference is to the human race in general. This passage (Genesis 6:1-4), therefore, which is the only one of its kind, is considered to be out of its place and to have been inserted here by the compiler as an introduction to the story of the Flood (6:5-8). The intention of the original writer, however, was to account for the rise of the giant race of antiquity by the union of demigods with human wives. This interpretation accords with Enoch chapters 6-7, etc., and with Jude 1:6, where the unnatural sin of the men of Sodom who went after "strange flesh" is compared with that of the angels (compare 2 Peter 2:4). (See Havernick, Introduction to the Pentateuch; Hengstenberg on the Pentateuch, I, 325; Oehler, Old Testament Theology, I, 196; Schultz, Old Testament Theology, I, 114; Commentary on Genesis by Delitzsch, Dillmann, and Driver.)


  • blondie

    Comments from others on the Nephilim. As a JW, I found it hard to explain this, very similar to trying to prove Jesus is Michael the archangel.





  • Narkissos
  • AuldSoul

    So, why the post-flood reference in Numbers to the sons of Anak who were from the Nephilim? Something is missing when people just try to explain Goliath away, and his kinfolk in Gath who were reknowned for extraordinary size. Why specify (in Joshua) that the Anakim were wiped out except for those in Gath and Ashdod?

    He is described as being 9' 6" tall. His copper coat is weighed in at 126 lbs., the blade of his spear weighed 15 lbs. Apparently, his height was matched by build instead of being disproportionate.

    Compare this to the world's tallest man (8' 11.1"): http://www.altonweb.com/history/wadlow/

    Why describe yet another champion of the Rephaim, also of extraordinary size, who had 24 digits, an extra digit on each extremity?

    These people, the Anakim, were famous. Their descendants were enormous. The Anakim were described in the Scriptures as being "from the Nephilim." The Anakim were later referred to as eterminated except for those remaining in Gath and Ashdod. The Anakim were tied to the Rephaim as relatives. Goliath was from the Rephaim, of Gath. Goliath was a giant, larger than the largest known human.

    So, greendawn, which is mistakenly understood? The Genesis account that came down through stories and has another plausible translation for the word rendered "whole earth", or the account in Joshua that is given as a first-person observer narrative?

    As an aside, whether the word Nephilim is understood as the angels who sired offspring or as the offspring themselves—the point remains their offspring reportedly survived to Joshua's day. Can someone explain how that happened without the hybrid children having offspring?


  • Narkissos


    In the thread I linked to in my previous post, Leolaia convincingly demonstrates that the key to this enigma is that the ancient Nephilim / Rephaim traditions didn't take into account the Flood "break," which came as a later addition into the "great history" of the remote past.

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