The first few chapters of Genesis are filled with all kinds of fascinating accounts. When it comes to the interpretation of these accounts, Bible scholars differ on what exactly some passages may mean. Fortunately these puzzling passages don’t detract from the main meaning of the passage, the book, the testament it is found in, or the Bible. Since the Bible don’t say much to clarify these passages, I have to assume that a detailed understanding of these passages is not that important.
Genesis 6 talks about ‘sons of God’, ‘daughters of men’, and ‘Nephilim’. The NETBible explains it as follows: “The Hebrew phrase translated “sons of God” (בְנֵי־הָאֱלֹהִים, bÿne-ha’elohim) occurs only here (Gen 6:2, 4) and in Job 1:6; 2:1; 38:7. There are three major interpretations of the phrase here. (1) In the Book of Job the phrase clearly refers to angelic beings. In Gen 6 the “sons of God” are distinct from “humankind,” suggesting they were not human. This is consistent with the use of the phrase in Job. Since the passage speaks of these beings cohabiting with women, they must have taken physical form or possessed the bodies of men. An early Jewish tradition preserved in 1 En. 6-7 elaborates on this angelic revolt and even names the ringleaders. (2) Not all scholars accept the angelic interpretation of the “sons of God,” however. Some argue that the “sons of God” were members of Seth’s line, traced back to God through Adam in Gen 5, while the “daughters of humankind” were descendants of Cain. But, as noted above, the text distinguishes the “sons of God” from humankind (which would include the Sethites as well as the Cainites) and suggests that the “daughters of humankind” are human women in general, not just Cainites. (3) Others identify the “sons of God” as powerful tyrants, perhaps demon-possessed, who viewed themselves as divine and, following the example of Lamech (see Gen 4:19), practiced polygamy. But usage of the phrase “sons of God” in Job militates against this view. For literature on the subject see G. J. Wenham, Genesis (WBC), 1:135.” Fascinating, eh?
Again we read of a man, Noah, who ‘walked with God’ (compare Enoch in Genesis 5), which stood in stark contrast with the rest of humankind at this point in the universe’s history: “God saw how corrupt the earth had become, for all the people on earth had corrupted their ways“. As mentioned in a previous posting, the direct translation of ‘walked with God’ is ‘to rub shoulders with’, which can be translated to ‘live in close proximity to’ or ‘maintain cordial relations with’. As a result of his relationship with God, he and his family will be saved from God’s judgment on the evilness of humankind. Let us pray that the Lord will raise up (and protect) Godly husbands that can give their families the spiritual guidance they need to be right with God.
I think it is not too much of a stretch to say that because Noah ‘walked with God’, it wasn’t hard for him to follow God’s instructions, as strange as they might have sounded. How often we complain that we cannot hear the voice of God. Might it just be that we are not ‘walking with God’ as we should be, and that that is the reason we are not hearing Him?
Another component of ‘walking with God’ is being obedient to Him, recognizing that since He is God, He knows what is best. We read in the text that “Noah did everything just as God commanded him“. Are we willing to be that humble? Western thought encourages individualism to such a strong degree, that it interferes with our ability to humbly obey our Creator . . .