Genesis 6:1-4 gives the account of the origin of giants in the earth. The giants (Nephilim) were the result of an unintended union between the sons of God and the daughters of men. The Bible does not explicitly state the identity of these sons of God. Some have speculatively attempted to explain that these sons of God were the godly human descendants from the line of Seth (Adam’s son) who married the daughters from the ungodly line of Cain. However, this speculation has no Scriptural confirmation, and even falls short scientifically. Scientifically, to produce a giant, we need the giant gene. When God created man, he was made upright (perfect) (Ecclesiastes 7:29) meaning that there was no mutation. So mutation should have come about after the sin of man and while gigantism is a potential result of a mutation, this should be most evident in the ungodly line of Cain and not of Seth who were godly (Genesis 4:26). So the sons of God, could not be the sons of Seth.
The Scripture does speak of the identity of the sons of God. In the Biblical book of Job, the “sons of God” phrase is used to refer to angelic beings (Job 1:6; Job 2:1; Job 38:7), which makes us understand that the sons of God were fallen angels. These fallen angels saw that the daughters of men were beautiful and married whomever they chose and had children. These children are described as giants or Nephilim; men who were mighty and renowned.
Even though this identity is Scriptural, the identity of the sons of God as the fallen angels has also come under question. First, how could angelic spirit beings have physical and sexual intimacy with human flesh? One explanation to answer this question, is that these fallen angels possessed men who mated with the women they took as wives. However, this is purely conjecture, while not impossible. A more plausible explanation supported by the Scripture is that God created his angels, with the ability to take human form with physical attributes including sexual capabilities. The Bible gives the account of Abraham entertaining angels with a physical meal which they ate (Genesis 18:7), an angel of the Lord wrestling with Jacob physically (Genesis 32:22-32); the people of Sodom and Gomorrah wanted to have vile sexual relations with the angels who had come to their city (Genesis 19). So the most plausible explanation is that these fallen angels manifested themselves in physical human form and had unintended sexual union with women. This is unintended because God intended man and woman to multiply (Genesis 1:28), not angels and women to multiply. Second, the scripture states that angels do not marry (Matthew 22:30), then how could the sons of God be (fallen) angels?. While the Scripture says that angels do not marry, it does speaks of the angels in heaven not the ones who had fallen. Angels like men were created for God’s purposes, but just as man fell, disobeying God and choosing his own way over God’s, so did the angels fall (Revelation 12:4) and can disobey and choose their own ways against God. Finally, one could ask , why is it that we do not have giants today, as in the olden days, for there are certainly fallen angels (demons) that we see manifested in possessions, even today? To answer this question, we need to go to the Biblical book of Jude, which states in Jude 1:6 that God has reserved the fallen angels, who kept not their first estate, but who left their habitation (of the heavens to dwell with women on earth), bound in everlasting chains under darkness, until his judgment. Interestingly, Jude records about these angels, right before he speaks of the evil people of the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah who went after strange flesh (Jude 1:7). To these fallen angels, women were strange flesh and yet they willfully chose to not live within the authority that God had given them.
Points to ponder:
Giants came about by the unholy union of the heavenly sons of God with the earthly daughters of men whom they saw were beautiful. With the unholy origin of giants, God says, that his Spirit can no longer put up with man for a long time and restricts the normal lifespan of man to a 120 years, in contrast to what man lived before such union. What are some of the beautiful things of the earth that attract us? What are some of the giants we create by unholy affection and intimacy to such earthly things? Remember, any giant we create is only to be short-lived with a finite lifespan, so let us as children (sons and daughters) of God set the Most High God our habitation (Psalm 92:9) and not be conformed to the patterns of this world (Romans 12:1). In other words, let us seek to have no more earthly giants!
Genesis 6:1-4 (KJV)
1 And it came to pass, when men began to multiply on the face of the earth, and daughters were born unto them,
2 That the sons of God saw the daughters of men that they were fair; and they took them wives of all which they chose.
3 And the Lord said, My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also is flesh: yet his days shall be an hundred and twenty years.
4 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.
Jude 1:6-8 (KJV)
6 And the angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day.
7 Even as Sodom and Gomorrha, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.
8 Likewise also these filthy dreamers defile the flesh, despise dominion, and speak evil of dignities.