The term Nephilim is a greatly debated title used in Genesis, and other books of the Bible. Not only is the origin of the Nephilim debated, but also their physical attributes and nature. In Genesis, the Nephilim are contemporary to the author, and so it appears that there is an assumption that the reader will understand who, or what, the phrase is referring to. Given this, let’s examine some of the possible origins, and thus nature of, the Nephilim.
When reading Genesis 5, we are presented with the genealogical record of patriarchs leading from Adam to Noah. Most of the names have very little information regarding them, but one thing that does stand out is the substantial ages that are associated with each person. Methuselah is especially noticeable, as he lived for 969 years before his death. This chapter of Genesis has spawned quite a few questions, and many of them still remain unanswered today. Perhaps, if we break down the way that we approach this chapter, we might be able to glean some additional information.
The Garden of Eden is such an unique story in Genesis as it portrays the fall of mankind into sin or rebellion against God. What I find most fascinating is the common interpretation of the story, that Adam an Eve were first ignorant of good and evil. It is assumed that they lacked the ability to distinguish between bad and good. However, this distinction requires reason and intelligence in order to be performed. Understanding the story in this way presumes God created Adam in an animalistic state and his sin was actually rewarded by elevating him to a full human state. This actually goes against the idea that all of mankind started with Adam, who was created directly by, and in the image of God. When we throw in the commonly portrayed talking snake there is quite a bit to unpack in this story.
Yom is the Hebrew word for day, and is used as such throughout the Bible. In most cases, there is no question of the meaning of the word due to the surrounding context. However, when it comes to the creation of the universe, or anything really, we don't have any context at all unless we know two things; the thing that is being created, and the process that is being used to create it. These are two things that we really do not have an understanding of when we look at the book of Genesis. We do not know what the universe is, and we most definitely do not know, with complete certainty, the process by which it was created.
What if we could create living beings that are programmable, self-healing, and organic? Would we do it? What would we program them to do? Perform medical procedures and deliver medications? Examine and sterilize food sources? We may just find the answer to that sooner than we think. A team of scientists at the University of Vermont have already created these creatures using stem cells from frogs. What I would like to explore today is whether or not this technology, despite its potential positive applications, is ethical. To put it more plainly, is it ethical to create living beings and deny them free will?
When reading Genesis 11, the most unquestionable takeaway is that God miraculously changed the languages of the people so that they could no longer communicate and that prior to this there was only a single language used. In almost every interpretation of this story, at least the ones which I have read, this is the case. Personally, I would like to question this for a moment.
Can Panpsychism align with Christianity? Panpsychism revolves around the idea that each particle in the universe is inherently conscious at some level. This idea has recently been embraced in the scientific community as a means of explanation for the origin of consciousness. Is this a philosophical and theological concept that Christians need to grapple with?
Does the Bible attempt to explain the origin of striped animals in the story of Jacob? I must admit, I had never heard this claim before and found myself a bit perplexed. The claim is that Jacob caused the first speckled and striped sheep and goats to appear by laying out branches of various trees in front of his flocks. Since the Bible is claiming that this is the origin of striped animals, the Bible must be lying. This is obviously not what Genesis is stating, but we will get to that in a moment. Read the claim for yourself below.
This is something that is very controversial among Christians in particular. Scientifically, it is generally accepted that there has never been a global flood. Does this mean that there was no global flood? Of course not, it simply means that the existing physical evidence, as interpreted by the majority of scientists, indicates that there has not been one. This is something that could easily change with time. Some new evidence may be discovered which changes everything, but until then Christians will need to be able to defend the idea of a Genesis flood without scientific confirmation.
If God loves us, why are people starving in the world? This question is commonly posed as a rebuttal to the idea that God is good and loves us. I must admit that this is tough question at first. It certainly seems to contradict the idea of an all-powerful, loving God. However, I think that, as with most moral objections to God, this is a classic case of projection. Let’s break it down and take a look at this question from a few different perspectives.