Genesis 6:4 Did Angels Marry Human Women?

By COGwriter

Some have wondered if angels marry, based on Genesis 6, and then created giants. Some are convinced of this. Is this possible? What does the Bible teach?

The biblical record reveals that angels are created spirits:

7 And of the angels He says: "Who makes His angels spirits ... (Hebrews 1:7)

14 Are they not all ministering spirits sent forth to minister for those who will inherit salvation? (Hebrews 1:14).

They are not mortal flesh like humans. A related video is also available: Did Angels Marry Women and Produce Giants?

What Did Jesus Say?

It is recorded in three parts of the Bible that Jesus said that angels do not marry.

34 Jesus answered and said to them, "The sons of this age marry and are given in marriage. 35 But those who are counted worthy to attain that age, and the resurrection from the dead, neither marry nor are given in marriage; 36 nor can they die anymore, for they are equal to the angels and are sons of God, being sons of the resurrection. (Luke 20:34-36)

Notice that Jesus said that after the resurrection, humans will be like the angels and will not marry. Matthew and Mark wrote the same thing:

29 Jesus answered and said to them, "You are mistaken, not knowing the Scriptures nor the power of God. 30 For in the resurrection they neither marry nor are given in marriage, but are like angels of God in heaven. (Matthew 22:29-30)

24 Jesus answered and said to them, "Are you not therefore mistaken, because you do not know the Scriptures nor the power of God? 25 For when they rise from the dead, they neither marry nor are given in marriage, but are like angels in heaven. (Mark 12:24-25)

Angels are created spirits and do not reproduce by sexual intercourse or any other means.

Genesis 6 Teaches About Humans

With this understanding, let's read the first four verses of 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, 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. (Genesis 6:1-2)

Who were these “sons of God”? Obviously they were male human beings. Adam was a son of God by creation:

38 ... Adam, the son of God. (Luke 3:38)

And all of Adam’s male descendants are sons of God in that sense. Since these “sons of God” married women, they can­not be angels — notice the context of 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." (Genesis 6:3)

Here again the sons of God are called men. They are limited to 120 years of age. This is not the case of angels who have been around for at least thousands, if not billions, of years.

Now, with that in mind, let's read the next verse, Genesis 6:4:

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. (Genesis 6:4)

Now were those 'men of renown,' those 'giants,' were they the offspring of a mating between angels and human women?

This is the verse that trips many up.

Some claim that the "sons of God" here were angels.

Yet, if these were good angels, they would not commit this sin, and if they were evil angels they would not be called the "sons of God."

Why sin?

Well, according to Jesus angels do not marry and Genesis 6:2 says the "sons of God" took wives. These sons somehow married the women in order for them to become wives.

Now since Jesus clearly stated that angels do not marry, this would have made it impossible for these women to have been wives of angels.

If it were possible that the angels were fornicating with humans, then they were sinning against God's law, and thus they were practicing evil.

Giants and Other Translations of Genesis 6:4

Notice also that Genesis 6 doesn't say those of renown were the same ones as those giants. Now people just read carelessly over that, and assume that those mighty men were the giants.

The passage, however doesn't say that.

It says, also, in addition to the giants, these children were born that became mighty men. So these are different people altogether. They are not the nephilim, not at all.

Notice that giants were there and also afterwards. Here are a couple of other translations:

New International Version
The Nephilim were on the earth in those days--and also afterward--when the sons of God went to the daughters of humans and had children by them. They were the heroes of old, men of renown.

New American Standard Bible
The Nephilim were 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.

JPS Tanakh 1917
The Nephilim were 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 were the mighty men that were of old, the men of renown.

So, there were giants on the earth, and afterwards, while there will STILL giants, mighty men of renown were also born.

The Bible clearly shows that people like Goliath and his brother Lahmi were physically giants (1 Samuel 17:4; 2 Samuel 21:19)--and there is no scriptural indication that this giantism came from angelic beings.

Sons of God in Genesis 6 was NOT a reference to angels.

Consider also Jesus' words as well as something the Apostle Paul wrote:

6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. (John 3:6)

39 All flesh is not the same flesh, but there is one kind of flesh of men, another flesh of animals, another of fish, and another of birds. 40 There are also celestial bodies and terrestrial bodies; but the glory of the celestial is one, and the glory of the terrestrial is another. (1 Corinthians 15:39-40)

Humans are flesh, and they reproduce in the flesh. Angels are spirit, they are not flesh, nor can they produce children. According to Genesis, reproduction is according to one's 'kind' (cf. Genesis 1:11-28).

Angels and humans are not the same kind and do not reproduce.

Furthermore, the context of Genesis 6 makes it clear that God is talking about human beings, not angels. Because the sons of God sinned, God said:

7 "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. (Genesis 6:7-8)

Notice that God said because of sin He would destroy humans and other flesh— not angels. Angels are spirits and could not be destroyed by something physical. Notice that Noah, not angelic spirit beings, found grace in the eyes of God. Genesis 6 is talking about physical beings.

Consider also what happened with the flood:

17 Now the flood was on the earth forty days. The waters increased and lifted up the ark, and it rose high above the earth. 18 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 covered. 20 The waters prevailed fifteen cubits upward, and the mountains were covered. 21 And all flesh died that moved on the earth: birds and cattle and beasts and every creeping thing that creeps on the earth, and every man. 22 All in whose nostrils was the breath of the spirit of life, all that was on the dry land, died. 23 So He destroyed all living things which were on the face of the ground: both man and cattle, creeping thing and bird of the air. They were destroyed from the earth. Only Noah and those who were with him in the ark remained alive. (Genesis 7:17-23)

With the outpouring of the flood all flesh died including every human except Noah and those with him (Genesis 7:21-23). Again, nothing about the fate of angels.

What About Jude?

After I finished a draft of this article, I saw a Protestant program where some 'expert' (Timothy Alberino) being interviewed by the host (Gary Stearman) claimed, "Transhumans led to the flood in the first place" (Tim Alberino: True Legends, Part 2 Prophecy Watchers. Church Channel, original air date March 8, 2016). And then said that since scientists are working on that now, this is some of what Jesus meant when He said in the end it would be like "in the days of Noah" (Luke 17:26).

In addition to citing Genesis 6:4, the two Protestant leaders on the program cited Jude 6 and concluded that this meant that this was a reference to angels breeding with humans. But that is NOT what Jude wrote.

6 And the angels who did not keep their proper domain, but left their own abode, He has reserved in everlasting chains under darkness for the judgment of the great day (Jude 6).

2 Peter 2:4 called these "angels who sinned."

Now think about this. Since the Bible says that angels do not marry and those in Genesis 6 married, Jude's writing could not possibly be another reference to angels breeding with humans. Jude only wrote that fallen angels left their abode. Well, the Bible shows that a third of the angels followed Satan:

3 And another sign appeared in heaven: behold, a great, fiery red dragon having seven heads and ten horns, and seven diadems on his heads. 4 His tail drew a third of the stars of heaven and threw them to the earth. (Revelation 12:3-4)

Those that were induced to follow Satan lost the abode that God originally gave them. The "sin" being discussed in Jude 6 was following Satan. The Pulpit Commentary on Jude states:

Verse 6. - The second instance of Divine judgment is taken from the angelic world. The copula connects it closely with the former, and gives it some emphasis: "angels, too," i.e., angels not less than the people selected by God to be a people for himself, have been examples of the terrible law of Divine retribution. The particular class of angels are defined as those who kept not their first estate; or better, their own principality. The idea conveyed by the term here is that of lordship rather than beginning. It is the term which is held by most commentators to be used as a title of angels in such passages as Colossians 1:16; Ephesians 1:21; Ephesians 3:10; Ephesians 6:12, etc., where mention is made of "principalities." In the present passage Tyndale, Cranmer, the Genevan and our Authorized Version agree in rendering it "first estate." But the Rhemish gives "principality," and Wickliffe has "princehood." Those seem right, therefore, who take the reference to be to the Jewish idea of a peculiar dignity or lordship held by the angels in creation. The sin alleged as the reason for the penalty which the writer recalls to the minds of his readers is that they failed to keep this lordship, and left their proper habitation; by which latter clause a descent to a different sphere of being is intended. The penalty itself is this - that God hath kept them in everlasting chains (or, bonds, with the Revised Version) under darkness unto the judgment of the great day.

Jude 6 says nothing about angels interbreeding with humans.

The Book of Enoch

The idea that the sin of the angels had to do with women comes from a non-biblical source per the Meyer's NT Commentary on Jude 6 (and it also mentioned 2 Peter 2:4):

according to the Book of Enoch 12:4,[18] is meant their forsaking of heaven, and their descent to earth in order to go after the daughters of men (Meyer's NT Commentary).

I have read the 'Book of Enoch,' and while some parts of the first chapter of it are accurate, much of the book is something that someone other than Enoch made up.

Here is some of what the Book of Enoch claims:

Chapter VI

1. And it came to pass when the children of men had multiplied that in those days were born unto them beautiful and comely daughters. 2. And the angels, the children of the heaven, saw and lusted after them, and said to one another: 'Come, let us choose us wives from among the children of men and beget us children.' 3. And Semjâzâ, who was their leader, said unto them: 'I fear ye will not indeed agree to do this deed, and I alone shall have to pay the penalty of a great sin.' 4. And they all answered him and said: 'Let us all swear an oath, and all bind ourselves by mutual imprecations not to abandon this plan but to do this thing.'

Chapter VII

1. And all the others together with them took unto themselves wives, and each chose for himself one, and they began to go in unto them and to defile themselves with them, and they taught them charms and enchantments, and the cutting of roots, and made them acquainted with plants. 2. And they became pregnant, and they bare great giants, whose height was three thousand ells: 3. Who consumed all the acquisitions of men. And when men could no longer sustain them, 4. the giants turned against them and devoured mankind. 5. And they began to sin against birds, and beasts, and reptiles, and fish, and to devour one another's flesh, and drink the blood. 6. Then the earth laid accusation against the lawless ones.

Now an 'ell' is a length of 45 inches or 1.14 meters. So, according to the Book of Enoch, these giants were about 11,000 feet tall or a little over 3 kilometers. This is absurd.

Here is another translation of the height of the giants that supposedly came from angels breeding with human females:

7:12 Whose stature was each three hundred cubits. These devoured all which the labor of men produced; until it became impossible to feed them;

With a cubit about 1.5 feet, this would make those giants 450 feet tall. This is also absurd.

Let me state that Enoch was NOT on the earth by the time of the flood according to the Bible (Genesis 5:24) and did NOT write much of what is attributed to him. While there can be value in ancient non-biblical writings, doctrine should be based on them when they are in conflict with the Bible.

Notice something else from the Book of Enoch which conflicts with scripture:

Chapter XL

9. And he said to me: 'This first is Michael, the merciful and long-suffering: and the second, who is set over all the diseases and all the wounds of the children of men, is Raphael: and the third, who is set over all the powers, is Gabriel: and the fourth, who is set over the repentance unto hope of those who inherit eternal life, is named Phanuel.' And these are the four angels of the Lord of Spirits and the four voices I heard in those days.

While the Bible does mention Michael and Gabriel, it does NOT teach that there is an angel named Phanuel over repentance. The alleged Book of Enoch also has other flaws.

Angels did not marry human females.

Now, scholars believe that the 'Book of Enoch' was finalized between the 4th and 1st century B.C., which is thousands of years after Enoch of the Bible died. Hence, that should also set off warnings.

There was also something from Alexandria, Egypt called the Excerpta Latina Barbaria that misquotes Genesis:

First of all it depends on the Alexandian text of the Bible. Quoting Genesis 6:2, the Excerpta speaks of "the angels of God seeing the daughters of men" (1.1.2), and while both the Septuagint and Vulgate have "the sons of God" in this verse, the Alexandrian text, like the Excerpta, speaks of the "angels of God." (Garstad B. Apocalyse Pseudo Methodius. Harvard University Press, London, 2012, p. xx)

So, there were a couple of corrupted sources that basically seem to have gotten many to think that angels married human females.

What About Job?

Some believe that since angels are referred to as the "sons of God" in Job, that this means that Genesis 6:4 is a reference to angels.

There are three passages in Job that use the expression "sons of God." Let's look at the first two:

6 Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan also came among them. 7 And the Lord said to Satan, "From where do you come?" (Job 1:6-7)

1 Again there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan came also among them to present himself before the Lord. 2 And the Lord said to Satan, "From where do you come?" (Job 2:1-2)

Notice that in both instances, the Bible distinguishes Satan from the "sons of God."

And the last one in Job is:

4 "Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth?
Tell Me, if you have understanding.
5 Who determined its measurements?
Surely you know!
Or who stretched the line upon it?
6 To what were its foundations fastened?
Or who laid its cornerstone,
7 When the morning stars sang together,
And all the sons of God shouted for joy? (Job 38:4-7)

Notice that the "sons of God" were happy with what God was doing. This would not include angels that would have possibly been fallen then.

What About Genesis 3?

Some have another view. Some believe that angels can reproduce because of the following:

14 So the Lord God said to the serpent:

“Because you have done this,
You are cursed more than all cattle,
And more than every beast of the field;
On your belly you shall go,
And you shall eat dust
All the days of your life.
15 And I will put enmity
Between you and the woman,
And between your seed and her Seed;
He shall bruise your head,
And you shall bruise His heel.” (Genesis 3:14-15)

Now let's consider this.

If angels reproduced, was God destroying their seed in the flood as that killed all males other than Noah's sons.

If that were the case, Satan would not have any seed.

Yet, notice that the devil still has offspring and his seed is spiritual:

42 Jesus said to them, “If God were your Father, you would love Me, for I proceeded forth and came from God; nor have I come of Myself, but He sent Me. 43 Why do you not understand My speech? Because you are not able to listen to My word. 44 You are of your father the devil, and the desires of your father you want to do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it. (John 8:42-44)

Jesus was speaking to the Jews (John 8:31). These were not the physical children of angels.

And the Jews who turned against Him caused Him to be bruised as prophesied in Isaiah 53:5 by the Romans (John 19:1). Angels were NOT prophesied to have physical children in Genesis 3:15, Satan was prophesied to have spiritual children, and he does, including most Gentiles.

So, since Jesus plainly taught that angels do not marry and that which is born of the flesh is flesh and spirit is spirit, angels have not produced physical human offspring. The context of Genesis 6 also confirms this was a discussion about human beings, not angels.

Believe the Bible over improper traditions and legends that are incompatible with it.

A related video is also available: Did Angels Marry Women and Produce Giants?

An item of possibly related interest may be Questions and Answers from Genesis.

Back to home page

Thiel B. Genesis 6:4 Did Angels Marry Human Women? http://www.cogwriter.com/angels-marry-women.htm COGwriter (c) 2016 0407