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Let Us Now Speak of Biblical Giants and Watchers.
The bible tells us the story of Noah and the flood. It tells us first that the daughters of man looked good to some of the sons of god, and that they went down and mated with them.
Genesis 6: “And it came to pass, when men began to multiply on the face of the earth, and daughters were born unto them, That the sons of God saw the daughters of men that they were fair; and they took them wives of all which they chose. And the LORD said, My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also is flesh: yet his days shall be a hundred and twenty years. “
There were giants in the earth in those days; and also after that, when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bare children to them, the same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown.
And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.
It then seems to incidentally tell us that there were giants living on earth at the time, and afterword as well. Then it tells us the humans and sons of god had children together who became famous or influential people. God then says he sees all kinds of evil going on in the world, repents making mankind and sends a flood.
But there is another writer who tells us why god was angry, and does it in great detail. This writer was Enoch. Enoch was the great grandfather of Noah, and it is said that he was transported to heaven where he learned the future and heaven’s secrets. Enoch tells us the same story as the bible in its own way:
“And it came to pass when the children of men had multiplied that in those days were born unto them beautiful and comely daughters. 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.' And Semjaza, 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.' 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.' Then sware they all together and bound themselves by mutual imprecations upon it. And they were in all two hundred; who descended in the days of Jared on the summit of Mount Hermon, and they called it Mount Hermon, because they had sworn and bound themselves by mutual imprecations upon it. And these are the names of their leaders: Samlazaz, their leader, Araklba, Rameel, Kokablel, Tamlel, Ramlel, Danel, Ezeqeel, Baraqijal, 8 Asael, Armaros, Batarel, Ananel, Zaq1el, Samsapeel, Satarel, Turel, Jomjael, Sariel. These are their chiefs of tens.”
Enoch tells us who these people are. And notice he calls them angels and not sons of god. This is an English translation of an Ethiopian translation or iteration of an old oral story. It was written around 300 BCE, which is three hundred years after the Jews chose their probable official works. It wasn’t included in 90BCE either when the Jewish Torah was official. It is called an apocryphal work, meaning of dubious authorship and content. The Christians did not adopt it either, except for a sect in Ethiopia where the text was found. We only have one other ancient copy written in Greek around 100 AD, and it is only fragments.
But Christians have been using it and hearing stories about it for centuries, and it has filtered in to some fundamentalist thinking in the US in particular. The watchers are of great interest to them as well as a race of giants. The imagination runs wild with it all for a lot of people. Some even equate the story with a great conspiracy. And some have even suggested the texts prove UFOs.
So I’ve done a lot of research on it all for some time now, just to see what all the fuss was about. I found out some interesting things.
let’s see what else Enoch has to say.
“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. And they became pregnant, and they bare great giants, whose height was three thousand ells: Who consumed all the acquisitions of men. And when men could no longer sustain them, the giants turned against them and devoured mankind. And they began to sin against birds, and beasts, and reptiles, and fish, and to devour one another's flesh, and drink the blood. Then the earth laid accusation against the lawless ones.”
The bible mentions giants, but here Enoch tells us the giants are the sons and presumably daughters of man and angel. Enoch goes on to tell us that these angels teach the daughters of man to paint their faces, pick roots for charms and medicines. But their giant children begin to lay waste to the earth and have sex with animals as well as drinking blood.
But the amazing thing is the height of these people: “three thousand ells” That’s literally impossible. From my research on Hebrew measurement, an ell is about the same as a cubit: 18 inches. It is measured from the elbow to the wrist. 3000 ell would make these men 4500 feet tall. Talk about a tall tale.
However, most of the modern myths are about people who were from ten to thirty five feet tall. The bible even tells us about this in Deuteronomy 3:11
“For only Og king of Bashan remained of the remnant of giants; behold his bedstead was a bedstead of iron; is it not in Rabbath of the children of Ammon? nine cubits was the length thereof, and four cubits the breadth of it, after the cubit of a man.”
This would mean that unless Og just liked a lot of room, he was probably as much as 11 to 12 feet tall. Sure is better than 4500. But was it true? He could have been 8 or 9 feet tall and liked a lot of room, or Hebrews of the time could have been smaller than the average person now. Perhaps the cubit in those days was only 15 or 16 inches average. That would have still made that bed 11.25 feet long.
The Hebrews tell us they were told to kill a lot of giants along their way to the promised land: Numbers 13: 33
“And there we saw the giants, the sons of Anak, which come of the giants: and we were in our own sight as grasshoppers, and so we were in their sight.”
Deuteronomy 2 10The Emims dwelt therein in times past, a people great, and many, and tall, as the Anakims;
11Which also were accounted giants, as the Anakims; but the Moabites called them Emims.
Emims means “dreaded ones,” And Anakim means “the long necked ones” in Hebrew.
So the children of the angels and man were still around after the flood? How is that possible? Yet god keeps telling the Jews to kill every last one of them, man woman and child. And somehow they do regardless of the fact that these people are supposed to be giants.
So while some like Enoch tell us the flood was primarily to get rid of the Nephilim (fallen ones) and their descendants, others tell a different story. The book of Jubilees is a text that goes along with Enoch. It tells us that god allowed some of the Nephilim to come back after the flood so they could test the new human race through idolatry, the occult, and other sins until the final Judgment. So we have our answer.
Well not so fast. The other side of this comes from the Quran and Pope Clementine of the 3rd century. Both claim that the “fallen ones” are sons of Seth, the third son of Adam and Eve. They rebelled against god by coming down off a mountain to mate with the daughters of Cain. Even the Ethiopian Orthodox Church that uses Enoch as part of their official books tells us the fallen ones were the sons of Seth. The sons of Seth had lived on the mountain away from the Canaanites. They were loved by god and considered his sons. Hence the reference to the sons of god. The word Nephilim means fallen ones. That does not automatically mean fallen angels. Judaism itself says the Hebrew word Elohiym, which is translated as meaning god, actually means: power or powerful one. The words that were translated to English as sons of god are actually used to mean sons of nobles, sons of rulers, or sons of judges, depending on the Hebrew text the phrase appears in.
Ethiopian Orthodox Church and the Jews will tell you that angels do not mate. It is impossible because they are spirits. But Enoch tells us that they can, but god did not make mates for them because they lived in heaven and had all the pleasures of heaven for eternity, so did not need sex. He made mates for mankind because they were not immortal and he wanted to give them woman and children to give them as much happiness as he could. However, once the angels came to earth they couldn’t stop having sex ,and seemed to like it here better than heaven.
The Watchers are an interesting idea. In fact, Enoch tells us they are certain class of angel. The word translated as Watcher in Hebrew means: to be awake. They are sentinels of heaven according to the Jews. Enoch calls them the Grigori. He tells us that 200 of them were sent to earth to watch mankind.
In the real sense of the word they were satans. The word in Hebrew means accuser, not evil one. They were accusers working for god. Like spys, they were to watch mankind and report back to god when we sinned. But all two hundred ended up doing the sinning, and were all imprisoned in the dark forever.
But then The Book of Jubilees tells us some were set free again to tempt us until the final judgement. After all, only their children were mortal. They were angels and couldn’t be drowned by a flood. So it appears that when they came back they mated with woman again to create another race of giants which the Jews then had to wipe out themselves. Why not? They had nothing left to lose.
The Watchers themselves are the focus of many modern conspiracy theories about a race of demon men who want to rule the earth. The illuminate who want to corrupt mankind so we all go to hell.
They cite the fact many gods of Sumer and Babylon are depicted as giants. However common wisdom is that this was done to show the subject’s importance in the picture. Pre-renascence and early renascence art does the same thing with depictions of a religious nature. Kings of Egypt made gigantic statues of themselves to show how great they were. It didn’t mean they actually were giants.
The average human male is 5.6 to 6 feet tall. A person 7 or 8 feet tall seems monstrously large. There are a lot of pictures Fundamentalists put on the web to show that there are giants of ten feet tall. But none of them have proven to be more than slightly over 8 feet.
There are tribes in Africa were many of the men are 7 feet tall. One of the pictures on a lot of these sites is of Anna Swann. She was born in 1846 in Mill Brook, Nova Scotia. When she was 5 years old she was already 4 foot 8 inches. By 22 she was 7 foot 6 inches tall. Not 10. But in the picture on this page you can see how really big she looks compared to a contemporary woman of average height.
I also included Chang Woo Gow who traveled the world as the Chinese Giant in the mid 1800s. He looks really gigantic. He was 7 feet 9 inches. They were healthy people. These days a lot of basketball players are well over 7 feet. It isn’t hard to see that a race of people close to slightly above 7 feet tall compared to a race of people just over 5 feet tall would seem like a massive difference if you were contemplating the fact that you would soon be in battle with them .
So let’s look at the most famous giant from David and Goliath from 1 Samuel. Goliath seems to grow with the ages. First century writer Josephus tells us he was 4 cubits and a span. That would make him 6 foot 9 inches. Not even a full 7 feet. The Septuagint manuscripts tell us the same thing. When we found the dead sea scrolls, which give us the oldest record of 1 Samuel it tells us the same thing: 6 foot 9. But read today’s manuscript of 1 Samuel and he becomes 6 cubits and a span, or ten feet tall. What a difference.
King James, 1 Samuel 17:4 “And there went out a champion out of the camp of the Philistines, named Goliath, of Gath, whose height was six cubits and a span.”
Septuagint, Kings 1 Chapter 17:4 And there went forth a mighty man out of the army of the Philistines, Goliath, by name, out of Geth, his height was four cubits and a span.
Who are we to believe? I’ll go with the people who wrote the early versions. Human nature embellishes these kinds of stories. Every time someone tells you about the big fish that got away it becomes bigger with each telling. So let’s say Goliath was just under 7 feet tall. He’s not the giant we were led to believe he was. We can probably say the same for the rest of the giants in the bible.
It is also funny that neither the Babylonian texts nor the Sumerian texts tell of giants, and yet they lived in the same region. I think their silence on the subject speaks volumes.
The last version of Genesis 6 I want to show you is an English translation from the Hebrew bible where the authors have tried not to interpret the words, but rather give it to us in its raw form. This differs a bit from even other Hebrew to English translations:
“1 And it came to pass that the human began to increase in number upon the face of the ground and caused to bring forth daughters for them, 2 and the sons of the “Elohiym [Powers]” saw the daughters of the human that they were functional and took for them the women from which they chose, 3 and “YHWH [He exists]” said my wind will not moderate in the human to a distant time whereas he is flesh and his days will exist a hundred and ten years, 4 the “Nephilim [Fallen ones]” existed in the land in the days of them and also afterward, when the sons of the “Elohiym [Powers]” come to the daughters of the human and they brought forth to them, they are the courageous ones which are from a distant time, men of the title,”
Notice anything odd? No giants. King James and others translated Nephilim as meaning giants. It means the fallen ones. The Hebrews make it easy for us. The sons of god which appeared in the King James version are gone too. These are the sons of powers. YHWH means he exists. They would have said sons of He exists if that’s what they meant. But they say sons of powers.
We get a completely different story here. It tells us the fallen ones existed in the land at that time and also after that time. Then it tells us that the sons of powers produced children with the daughters of men who became the courageous ones from a distant time, who were men of title.
So what does this do for the sons of Seth? After all, Seth was the third son of Adam and Eve. At first glance it looks like we are into a twilight zone. Who could have been the men from a distant time who were men of title before the sons of Seth? No one was around before Adam.
But I think we have to look at it another way. It looks like it could be a scribe’s note. He is implying that he is writing this at a future time, and the children born to the sons of title and daughters of man are the men people in his time think of as the courageous ones or heroes of the distance past. Men who held titles.
We are not told here that the sons of the fallen ones went to the daughters of man, but rather they existed on the earth when the sons of powers went to the daughters of man. Do we have one thought going in these passages or several stories running concurrently? Are the fallen ones the target of the flood? No.
“5 and “YHWH [He exists]” saw that the dysfunctions of the human in the land was abundant and all of the thought of inventions of his heart was only dysfunctional all of the day, 6 and “YHWH [He exists]” was comforted given that he made the human in the land and he distressed himself to his heart, 7 and “YHWH [He exists]” said, I will wipe away the human which I fattened from upon the face of the ground, from the human as well as the beast as well as the treader and also the flyer of the sky given that I was comforted given that I made them,”
He is clearly after the humans. It’s like the author or scribe is setting the scene. There came a time when there were a lot of humans on earth. The fallen ones already existed, and continued to exist after those days. It was the time when the sons of men of title came down the mountain to take wives from the ordinary population. God told them it wasn’t a really good idea because they were not immortal and weren’t going to be around long anyway. Then he takes a good look at the state of the human race and decides that it has become corrupt and he makes plans to drown them all, though he is heartbroken about it.
Could the sons of Seth be the sons of men of title? Apparently they lived well up in the mountains, and they rebelled against their traditions and parents, and mated with Canaanites. If so who were the fallen ones? And how could they have become the courageous ones which are from a distant time, men of the title?
But there is but one family that survives; Noah’s family and his sons. Could this mean that Noah was a son of the mix of Seth’s clan and a Canaanite woman? Does the scribe mean that through Noah the line of that mix became the kings and nobility of the world after the flood? Where else would they come from?
In any case, no Hebrew translation mentions giants.
Enoch has spawned a couple of interesting theories. One is that of aliens. Chariots of the Gods was written in 1968 by Erich von Däniken. While most of his claims about ancient artefacts depicting aliens have been proven false, his book made people think and it became the springboard for science fiction writers. One idea is that aliens came to earth and genetically engineered us, and then actually mated with human woman once they have seen what they had done, creating an even more advanced hominoid race than had existed before they came. This assumes they didn’t have any of their own woman with them and were probably here for years. It has even been postulated that the burning bush could be an alien speaker system. Fire can be used to transmit sound like a speaker. The aliens might have had a technology that could mimic that.
So perhaps the bible is telling us that the leader of these aliens, who we think of as god, wasn’t happy with them and punished them? Perhaps the fact that he stopped talking to people like Moses is due to the mission ending ? Perhaps he thought giving this primitive society a religion would help unify and strengthen it, as well give Moses authority for bringing changes to his culture?
The other most common conspiracy theory is a variation on the idea that the watchers are actually the people in power. That they have always been the kings of the world, that globalization is their idea so they can rule as one and destroy all opposition. Then, of course, destroy mankind and the world and send us all to hell.
Young earth creationists love Enoch because they think giants in the past somehow destroys the notion of evolution. But of course that is nonsense. Even if they could prove that there were a race of giants on the earth it might alter evolution theory, but certainly wouldn’t hurt it let alone prove it false. Creationists also seem to have no problem falsifying evidence. A picture was circulated a few years back of a skeleton found that was 36 feet tall. Turns out it was an entry in a Photoshop contest.
Amazing what one can do with Photoshop and other picture editors these days. You really can’t trust photos anymore.
So are aliens or angels, evil and good, watching over us or still checking in with god? Or are they plotting to overthrow the world and destroy us? Were there really giants over ten feet tall roaming the earth 8 thousand years ago?
You can decide yourself. But I doubt all three. Humans have more than enough imagination to account for such stories. But reading the ancient literature is always fun and educational.