13: Foundational Frameworks Part 13 (Sept. 3, 2017)

FOUNDATIONAL FRAMEWORK. PART 13

Foundational Truths: The Bible is God’s self-revelation.
God is the Eternal, Sovereign Creator; all that He creates is good.
Man is a responsible agent, held to a moral standard.
Sin originates within a person, separating us from God.

Review: Man’s God-given directive was to “rule” (have dominion) over all of God’s creation (Gen 1:28). Mankind misused this responsibility, deciding to “rule” on a matter apart from God’s command (Gen 3:1-7). This choice resulted in a forfeiture of rulership, allowing for Satan to assume a ruling capacity in the world (Matt 4:8-9; John 12:31; 14:30; 16:11; 2 Cor 4:4; Eph 2:2). The “offspring” of Eve that would “bruise” Satan’s head is an immediate threat to his rulership. Therefore, Satan seeks to pollute the gene pool in order to thwart the promise of YHWH.

The entire narrative of human history is about the coming reign of the Kingdom of God, with Jesus Christ as its rightful king, to restore and reclaim what is rightfully His. This is the theme of Scripture.

Genesis 6:1-4. The multiplication of men is from the genealogy of Genesis 5 (“sons and daughters”). The “sons of God” are angels and not the sons of Seth’s line. 

Some deny this strange union because of verses like Matt 22:30 and Mark 12:25, stating that angels do not “marry,” but the context shows the time that Jesus is speaking about is the “resurrection” of men and that men will not marry after that time, but will be like the angels “in heaven.” Those angels that have stayed true to YHWH do not marry. Those who have rebelled, as seen in Gen 6:1-4, are awaiting judgment (2 Peter 2:4; Jude 6).

The pronouncement of YHWH in 6:3 gives the human race 120 years before He brings about judgment. Verses 4 & 5 give the supernatural and natural reasons for the coming judgment, respectively. This 120 years gives ample time to repent.

Moses notes that the Nephilim were on the Earth before and after the Flood. How is this possible considering only 8 people would be delivered from the coming judgment?
The word “Nephilim” means “fallen ones,” and are the result of the sexual union between fallen angels and human women. The KJV records them as “giants,” which is from the Septuagint. The idea (in Greek thought) is that the Nephilim were Titans, being half man and half god. Being men of “renown” means that they were an offspring with a reputation, one that merited judgment. 

How could such copulation take place? It is nothing out of the ordinary to understand that fallen angels can inhabit human beings. Because we are not really exposed to such a concept until Ezekiel and Daniel, it may seem foreign early on. However, the Bible is clear that demonic influence is behind much of the world’s powers and that sexual perversion is often linked to the demonic.

Their presence after the Flood may be in similarities, meaning that it was not the same race as the Nephilim before the Flood, but giants who were deemed Nephilim because it is the closest thing that could draw association. Otherwise, we must conclude that Satan sought to pollute the gene pool at another juncture after the Flood. (For more on the Nephilim, post-Flood, see Num 13:33; Deut 1:28; 2:10-11, 21; 9:2; Josh 11:21-22; 14:12, 15).

Genesis 6:5-9. Moses writes of the spiritual condition of humanity in those days. Living according to one’s conscience had failed. Everyone desired evil at their core (See also 6:11-12). V. 6 shows YHWH’s personal sorrow over mankind’s choice to sin continually. The notion that YHWH is “sorry” should not lead us to think that He is regretting His act of creation, but has regret over the choices of mankind. This word is translated as “repent” or “regret” in some versions. Some find this troubling because of verses like Num 23:19; 1 Sam 15:29; and Psa 110:4. However, the context of each passage will clear up any misconceptions, showing YHWH as making a pronouncement that He will not change His mind about. Here, He is “grieved” over man’s sin (also v.7).

In verse 7, YHWH pronounces a judgment. He cannot hide sin, nor disregard it. Sin must be brought to justice. 

Noah is different from the rest of the world. He “found favor” in God’s sight, meaning that God had grace on Noah. We learn that Noah “walked with God” much like Enoch did. This is shocking because it is Noah’s conduct that sets him apart and it is Noah’s conduct that causes him to “find favor” with YHWH (See also Ezekiel 14:12-20).

Immediately, we may object to this notion, but we must remember that they are operating in the Dispensation of Conscience where each man is to govern his life according to good or evil. The world was choosing evil and was meriting destruction. Noah was choosing to abide by his conscience and the Lord looked favorably (graciously) upon him. This situation has nothing to do with “heaven and hell” issues. We are talking about the physical loss of life as a result of rejecting divine truth from a gracious Creator. 

Some believe that the declaration that Noah was “righteous” and “blameless” (6:9) does not just speak to his conduct and actions, but also to the fact that his gene pool had not been polluted by the heinous evil that was taking place.

Genesis 6:10-17. YHWH provides 2 of 3 “divine assessments” regarding the condition of the Earth in v. 11-12 (The other being 6:5). YHWH tells Noah of the judgment to come and calls him to build a barge, as the dimensions would entail. God decrees that everything must die due to the rampant perpetuation of sin. With Noah, only one way is provided for salvation (escape, deliverance, rescue).

Genesis 6:18-22. Here we have the 1st mention of the word “covenant.” When we hear or see “covenant,” always think “contract.” YHWH is going to make a contract with Noah (Gen 9:8-17). YHWH tells him to gather food for himself and that two of every kind of animal will inhabit the ark with him, being male and female.

Noah believes YHWH. He does all that YHWH tells him to do.

Q: Where would we be in this account? Going into the ark or going into destruction?

Q: Do we sin too easily? Do we rarely struggle against temptation, choosing instead to fall into it? 

The Lord is looking to be gracious to His children, as He was to Noah for his faithfulness. 

The Dispensation of Conscience

1. Responsibility- Man is to live according to his conscience, now that he knows good and evil (Gen 3:22).
2. Failure- “every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually” (Gen 6:5b, also v. 11-12).
3. Judgment- YHWH will bring a worldwide flood to destroy everything (Gen 6:13, 17).
4. Grace- YHWH spares Noah and His sons, as well as two of every kind of animal (Gen 6:18-20).