Truth in the Text Part VI – Did Giants Really Exist?

If asked to give the name of a Biblical giant, most of us could pull Goliath from our memories, even if never raised in Sunday School singing about David and his five little stones. What about Og? He was a giant. So was Saph. These giants are not so well known. Either are Lahmi  and Ishbi-Benob. But these guys were as real as Goliath, and perhaps even taller.

Were did they come from?  Where did they go? If the Nephilim died out in the Flood of Noah (see part V), where did these giants come from?

I suppose the first question we need to discuss is “Did giants really exist?” The answer is yes. We know they did because God’s Word tells us they did, like the facts surrounding creation and the birth of Jesus and the promises in Paul’s letters. They weren’t the thirty foot monsters of bad movie fame, but there were people groups of greater height and strength than normal.

Let’s look at a few references: Continue reading

Truth in the Text Part V – Who were the Nephilim?

The Nephilim were on the earth in those days, and also afterward, when the sons of God went to the daughters of the human beings, and had children by them. These were the heroes of old, men of renown. (Genesis 6:4, TNIV)

There were giants in the earth in those days: and also after that, when the sons of God came in to the daughters of men, and they bare children to them, the same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown. (KJV)

So who exactly are these ‘sons of God’, daughters of men, and their offspring, the Nephilim, in the time of Noah?

I’ll briefly cover the primary theories, the ones discussed in Biblical circles anyway. There is an alien invasion theory that has a following, too, but I won’t go there in this blog.

I. Fallen Angel View (most popular view)

The ‘sons of God’ are angels that chose to leave heaven, often called ‘fallen angels.’ They bred with human women and the Nephilim were the offspring.

Supported by:

a. Other uses of ‘sons of God’ in the Bible refer to heavenly beings (Job 1;6, 2:1, 38:7, Ps 82:6, 29:1, 89:6)

b. Angels are able to leave heaven and sin. Some are ‘in chains’ because of their sin in Noah’s day. Their sin seems to be associated with sexual misconduct. (I Peter 3:18-20; 2 Peter 2:4-10, Jude 6).

c. The word nephilim is related to the Hebrew verb ‘to fall.’

d. The Nephilim are described as ‘mighty men, men of renown.’ The word is translated as ‘giants’ in the King James Bible. The half angel, half human idea lends itself to this idea.

Continue reading

Truth in the Text Part IV – How Old are the Dinosaurs?

I promise I’ll write more about dinosaurs soon. For now, let’s talk about how ages are established for their bones. How do we estimate a triceratops skeleton at 68 million years old?

If you remember from Part III, Carbon-14 (C14) dating is only good for dating samples up to about 50,000 years. Dinosaurs are believed to have died out millions of years ago, so routine sampling for Carbon makes no sense to many scientists. After 50,000 -100,000 years, all the Carbon originally in the animal is gone.

These men and women aren’t trying to hide anything by not assessing the C14 levels. Based on their assumptions about the age of the earth (see Truth in the Text Part I), their research methods are sound. They will use a Parent-daughter isotope that decays much slower, allowing ages to be assessed beyond 50,000 years. The Uranium/Potassium isotope is the one of choice, assessing ages into the millions of years. Unfortunately, there isn’t any in the dinosaur bones.

Q: So how do scientists estimate when dinosaurs roamed the earth? Continue reading

Truth in the Text Part III – Just How are Rocks and Bones Dated?


How do we reconcile a 6,000 year old earth with all the data showing ancient bones, fossils and rocks at far older ages? I can’t say I ever really questioned it in years past, just assumed God created the earth in an already mature state. Adam, for example, was formed as an adult, and the trees in Eden were mature and fruit bearing. Why not rocks with inherent age? What is that to God?

Lately I’ve been looking into the research, however, and discovering some interesting perspectives. It’s good to question, to search for answers. God’s Word is truth, bottom line, but He doesn’t ask us to believe in a vacuum.

Scientific research relies on assumptions. It has to. There have to be parameters from which to begin hypothesizing. Gravity, for example. Any research on rockets has to assume gravity will continue to fight flight in a predictable and measurable manner. The developer of a new medication has to assume certain chemicals will continue to behave as they have in the past, raising blood pressure, inhibiting infections, etc. These assumptions are based on experimentation that can be observed and reproduced.

When it comes to estimating the age of something formed in the past, assumptions are essential. No one has a time machine. No one can go back and watch it actually occur. This is where the contradictions lie between scientists who believe the earth is billions of years old and those who believe it’s around 6,000 years old.  The actual testing isn’t so much a question as are the assumptions the results are based on. Continue reading