Sometimes the Bible talks about things we don’t understand. That’s to say, we’re still trying to determine precisely what it means. Consider this verse from Genesis.

The sons of God saw that the daughters of humans were beautiful, and they married any of them they chose.

Genesis 6:2 (NIV)

Who were the sons of God? Who were the daughters of humans?

There are several views on this.

  1. The sons of God were fallen angels, and the daughters of the humans were human.
  2. The sons of God were powerful human rulers (sons), and the daughters were still human.
  3. The sons of God would be those born to Seth, called the Sethites, while the daughters of humans were the daughters of Cain: the Cainites.

In the Old Testament, in Hebrew, the phrase “sons of God” refers to angels (cf. Job 1:6, 2:1, and 38:7). However, in the New Testament, the term “sons of God” refers to Christians who follow the Lord. As evidenced by these verses.

But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name.

John 1:12 (KJV)

For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.

Romans 8:14 (KJV)

If we consider the book of Job, the only other place in the Old Testament where the expression “the sons of God” appears, we could say Genesis 6:2 refers to angels. Genesis 6:4 also indicates that the sons of God might not have been humans.

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.

Genesis 6:4 (NIV)

The Nephilim were the offspring between the “sons of God” and the “daughters of humans.” The term “Nephilim” means “giant.” The reference to this offspring being “the heroes of old and men of renown” indicates that the “sons of God” weren’t human but angels. Fallen angels, to be exact since the question arises as to how this offspring could be any “better” than “normal” humans.

Some think that the sons of God couldn’t be angels because of Matthew 22:30.

At the resurrection people will neither marry nor be given in marriage; they will be like the angels in heaven.

Matthew 22:30 (NIV)

This verse indicates the angels in heaven are sexless since they don’t marry. There’s more conjecture out there as to angels and sex, but frankly, when we focus on questions like “Who were the sons of God?” we’re missing out on the point behind the Scripture. The point behind Genesis 6:1-4 is found in Genesis 6:5-8.

The Lord saw how great the wickedness of the human race had become on the earth, and that every inclination of the thoughts of the human heart was only evil all the time. The Lord regretted that he had made human beings on the earth, and his heart was deeply troubled. So the Lord said, “I will wipe from the face of the earth the human race I have created—and with them the animals, the birds and the creatures that move along the ground—for I regret that I have made them.” But Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord.

Genesis 6:5-8 (NIV)

The Lord found the world wicked, destroying every living thing except Noah and his family. That’s the point of Genesis 6:1-4. While it might be interesting to consider who the sons of God were, I’m reminded of what Paul said to Timothy about false teachers teaching false doctrine.

Don’t let them waste their time in endless discussion of myths and spiritual pedigrees. These things only lead to meaningless speculations, which don’t help people live a life of faith in God.

1 Timothy 1:4 NLT

Therefore, I apply this verse to the question about the sons of God in Genesis. Speculating on such ideas does nothing to help people lead a life of faith in God.

Do you know God? God knows you, and he loves you. He sees you as significant because you are. No one is insignificant to Him. He’s with you today, and he wants you to know him. Jesus died for your sins and mine so we could be free of guilt, freed from death, and live eternally with him. Eternal salvation is just a prayer away.

Pray this prayer with me to accept the gift of salvation:

Lord Jesus, forgive me for all my sins. I repent from my ways. Wash me in your blood and cleanse me from all unrighteousness. I believe that you died on the cross, were buried, and on the third day, God the Father raised you from the dead. Right now, Lord Jesus, I open the door to my heart and receive you into my heart as my Lord and personal Savior. Amen.

If you prayed that prayer, then congratulations! You are on the first step of a brand new life. Allow me to be the first to welcome you to my family, the family of God. There are abundant resources available online for new Christians. You can visit here for more information on what to do next. You can also leave me a comment, and I’ll do my best to help you on the next step of this incredible journey.