Covenant Words
Covenant Words

Episode · 7 years ago

The Sons of God: Reborn (Genesis 6:1-8)

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

Rev. Christopher Chelpka

Please give your attention now to God's holy and inspired word. When man began to multiply on the face of the land and daughters were born to them, the sons of God saw that the daughters of man were attractive and they took as their wives any they chose. Then Jehovah said, my spirit shall not and bide abide in man forever, for he is flesh. His days shall be one hundred twenty years. The nephelim were on the earth in those days and also afterward, when the sons of God came in to the daughters of man and they bore children to them. These were the mighty men who were of old, the men of renown. Jehovah saw the wickedness of man was great in the earth and that every intention of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually, and Jehovah was sorry that he had made man on the earth and it grieved him to his heart. So Jehovah said, I will blot out man, whom I have created from the face of the land, man and animals and creeping things and birds of the heavens, for I am sorry that I have made them. But Noah found favor in the eyes of Jehovah, you may be seated. These verses of Genesis six one through eight provide something of a transition between the genealogies that we've we've went through in chapter five and the flood that is coming upon the earth in chapters six and following. They provide this transition, reminding us that, even though God has been a persevering man, giving to him and many blessings, I'm providing the continuance of life and food and protection, a measure of justice. I'm various kinds of goods on the earth. Man has despised these things and in his sin, I'm gone after evil ways and therefore brought God to the pole point where he says he will judge, I'm not just man, but but all the...

...earth, and will condemn it. This begins in verse in Chapter Six, Verse One, we read that when man began to multiply the face of the land and daughters were born to them, and then it describes something that happened. It sets in other words, the great sins that are described here in six on, both in a certain kind of specific way and also in a general way. It describes them in this context of man's continuing life is happening. A mankind is flourishing, multiplying on the face of the earth. But something has happened and the esv Study Bible, I believe, describes this very nicely summarizes it. It says something good in God's creation here, in these verses, something good and God's creation is used in disobedience and sinful rebellion against God with tragic consequences. That's what we see here and in these verses. Something good in God's creation is used in disobedience and sinful rebellion against God with tragic consequences. And only Noah stands apart from this sin, that sin described in those first verses, in verses one through four, but then generally and in a broad and even complete way in verse five, every intention, of the thoughts of the heart of mankind was only evil. Continually shows the great depravity of man after the fall. It wasn't just a one time thing or a simple mistake or something like that happened. That happens in verses one through four, but the act that is connected there is connected with a heart that is desperately wicked and corrupt. So what happened what is described here when it says the sons of God saw that the daughters of man were attractive and they took as their wives any of they choose. I'm very briefly. There have been very there have been different ways of interpreting this. Perhaps you've heard I'm one of these. One way that it has been interpreted is to say that the sons of God are fallen angels, fallen angels that then have sexual relations with a mankind. This is an ancient interpretation, but it's but it fails for a number of reasons. First of all, there's no other indication in scripture of any kind of similar action of angels mixing with humans in this way. A second reason not to believe this is that in Markswe hundred and twenty five, we have a verse that would seem to even exclude the possibility, based on a non sexual nature of angels. Another reason to not believe this...

...interpretation is that God judges humanity in the flood and not angels, and this is very specific when it says in verse three that in connection with this, Jehovah said, my spirit shall not abide in man forever, for he is flesh. So the judgments is coming very specifically on flesh, on man, not spiritual creatures. Another interpretation which has been very popular is that the sons of God are the sethites and the daughters of man are the Canaanites. This makes a certain amount of sense because from the beginning of or after the fall, humanity has been divided in these kind of two lines, the Kingdom of God and the Kingdom of Man. And here we have perhaps this interpretation would say see a kind of mixing. But though it fits the context, it doesn't really fit the words that we have, at least in a very clear way in chapter six in because if you look at verse one, it speaks about man in a general way. It says when man began to multiply on the face of on the face of the land and daughters were born to them. Well then, and verses to it's it doesn't make sense to take something that to general man multiplying and now attach it specifically to the sons of God and daughters specifically attached to one group of people, the the Canaanites. In fact it's it's the sethites who are said to have daughters. Cane doesn't. When Canes Genealogy has given. Daughters aren't really mentioned, though certainly he had them. It's not where the text emphasizes. The third interpretation that I'm that I believe and I think most clearly fixed the text, is that the sons of God here don't describe the sethis or fallen angels, but men who were regal and kingly and powerful, who then used their stature, used their authority, to build Harems, basically for themselves. Powerful men, men of renown, as the text says, people that had a certain measure of glory and power and then used this in a way that was sinful. If it sounds weird to call men the sons of God, well remember that Adam himself was a son of God. He was made in his image and in his likeness. We secre this number of times in these first chapters of Genesis. But then, very specifically, he's it's talked about that in terms of this father son relationship in genesis five. If you look at the beginning there, it says when God created man, he made him in the likeness of God.

Then, if you look at verse three, it says when Adam had lived a hundred and thirty years, he fathered a son in his own likeness, after his image. So you see in the way that Adam had a son, he is described as being a Godson. In Josea one hundred and ten, we see that the children of Israel are described broadly as the sons of God. Those who are not his people will be called the sons of God or the children of God. Other places in the Bible refer this and a specifically to kings in particular, gain this title. So in Second Samuel Fourteen, God promises to David That gaved son will be God's son. Psalm eighty two six says you are God's speaking to kings, it says you are God's sons of the most high, all of you. Nevertheless, you shall die like men and fall as one man. Oh princes. Why would kings be described as sons of God? It's because kings or noble men, act in a way that is in sort of, in a sense, the they exemplify or amplify the image of God that is in all of us. Let me explain by asking this question. What does it mean to be a son of God? What does it mean to be made in the image and likeness of God? How would you answer that question? What does it mean that you are made in the image and likeness of God? What means that we have something of our father in us, we share in his likeness, in his image. It means that it's not just something we have, but it's something that we are, and the Bible explains this in various ways. So, for example, in Genesis one hundred and thirteen, it says that we were made very good. Means that there is this moral quality to us at in being made in God's image, and this would make sense that God, in bearing forth sons in the way that he did, would that they would be very good. Why? Because God is good. Ecclesiastic seven nineteen says that got in God created man, He made him upright. Ephesians for twenty four reminds us that when we when Christ brings us back into the image of God or restores that in us, he restores righteousness and holiness in us. So, you see it, when God made us, he gave us a particular constitution. He we were made in a particular way, very good, upright, righteous, holy. The Bible also says that, being made in the image of God, we have this intellectual capacity for knowing God, Our world and ourselves in him. We are also said to share in his attributes,...

...knowledge, righteousness, holiness, but also goodness, love, truthfulness, power mercy. But all these things together, these ways that make us up, the way that we are, then imply a certain kind of action. Right. Birds Fly because they are birds. They do a certain action because they are a certain being. Likewise, mankind, when made in the image of God, is called to do a particular thing, to act as God acts. Now, of course, not as God's but as sons of God. There's those that share and a measures as created beings. So what does the Bible say? Well, God says in Genesis One, let them rule. He created man, male and female, and his image. He made them after him, and he says let them rule. They are have to have dominion, as God has had dominion, God has worked and rested, and they, likewise are to work and rest, even as God has been fruitful and multiplied in the works of creation. They are to be fruitful and multiply, and they are to do so in a community of love, a union between one man and one woman. All of these kinds of actions and the kind of love and justice and peace that God is and that man has been made to be. They are then to demonstrate to one another so that man is not just a single individual, but also a society, not just an individual who is knowledgeable and righteous and holiness, but a community, a society that is this way as well. This is how God made us, to to live after him and therefore to to shine forth his glory in the way that he made us. When an artist makes a beautiful painting, it reflects well on the artist, right, you say, oh well, that's a van go right, or that's a Rembrandt. It's not just a painting, but it reflects something of the artist himself or herself, and it glorifies the one who made it. We are like that as well as those who are made in the image and likeness of God. We are called to reflect back that glory, God's glory, is to redound to him, to return to him in this way. This is our constitution and it is our calling. Is the way that we are and it is what we are supposed to do. It's what makes us human beings, it's what makes human society, and this is what it means to be a son of God. Now, as I conclude, this point and in answering this question, what does it mean to be a son of God? Let me make explicit what I hope is implicit, and that's that women are, of course included in this title. When we talk about sons of God, we are not simply talking about men...

...or boys. It includes women because, remember, when God created man, He created them in his image and likeness, male and female. He created them that Jose a one hundred and ten verse I described earlier, when it talks about the sons of God, is talking not just about the males of Israel and particular, but all of Israel. So why translate it son? Why Talk About Sons of God? Well, it's because we are called not to think in terms of a gender, necessarily, but in terms of a status. Sons often have been, and certainly in the context that scripture was written, those who had a certain duty and honor and inheritance that was given to them in a way that daughters are not. Sons belong to a family and a family line, in a way that daughters could be separated from them. So in couldn't. So in in giving women the title of Son, the Bible is saying that the things that are normally due to sons are also due to women as well. Take Romans Eight, for example. All turn there and read a few verses to you. In Romans Eight, verse fourteen, we read for all who are led by the spirit of God are sons of God. Right. This certainly doesn't exclude women, because women are led by the spirit. We see examples of that in scripture, phoebe and Lydia and many others that are explicitly said that the spirit of God dwelled in them, lived in them, changed them open to their hearts, and we know that lit that God also tells us that it is not a male or an only that dwells in Christ and that are unified in him, but male and female. So this is without question that this those who are led by the spirit of God, which includes women, are the sons of God. So again, why speak in this terms? Because we want to be thinking in terms of this legal status, in terms of belonging to this family, of being brought in and receiving a particular and legal kind of inheritance. So that's eight fourteen. If you read on in verses fifteen through seventeen, you hear this, for you did not receive a spirit of slavery, to fall back into fear, but you receive the spirit of adoption as sons by whom we cry AH, a father, the spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God and if children, then heirs, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we...

...may also be glorified in him. And then verse twenty three. And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have who have the first fruits of the spirit grown inwardly, as we eagerly, as we wait eagerly for the adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. So what the Bible is doing in referring to sons of God, not in every place, but in most places and in particular places like this, are reminding us that it's all that all who have the spirit of God, both men and women, have a right to these kind of legal benefits that come from being in Christ, adoption, inheritances, being heirs of God in Christ. So, women, this is a good news for you, because it means that the Bible, in saying these kinds of things, reminds you of your great dignity that you have in being made of the image of God. It reminds you that what the world so often denies you, so often has denied you, you have abundantly in Jesus Christ, inheritances and riches and glories that will last forever and ever. This also means that, as women and as men, we all have the responsibility to bear forth this image, to be the kind of people that God has called us to be, in our respective genders, but in society as a whole, we are called to be the sons of God, to be those who are made after his image and called to do the things he has called us to do. But from the beginning we have gone against this nature and against God's law. This, of course, began when Adam and Eve sinned and when against the very calling that God had called upon them, the very nature that they had been made into. We see this with Eve, for example, when she sees the fruit, saw that it was attractive and good and she took it. Isn't this the exact same set of circumstances described here in chapter six of Genesis that these these noble men, these great kings, these sons of God, saw that the daughters of men were attractive, they saw something that was good, that they desired, and they took it. It's the same kind of actions that Eve took. She she saw it, she wanted it, she perceived that this was good in her sight and she took it. And this is how it's always been, to not act according to God's man at commands, but according to sins desire. Even Adams rebellion was, in a broad a rebellion that brought judgment and...

...death and set in place this pattern that has continued and continues even to today, when people see call something desirable and attractive that is not and takes it as their own. And God has granted these men who go and they see these women and take them into their households, take them as their wives, take them as what something that doesn't belong to them, just as eve did and Adam did when they took the fruit that there was not theirs. God grants judgment. God Grants Judgment On them, He bestows judgment, he sentences them, just as Adam and Eve were sentenced to death for their sin of taking what did not belong to them, of going against God's commands. This sin continues and continues and multiplied in the world to such a place that it was so spread and so bad that God was grieved to his heart, grieve to his heart sorry that he made man and set his face to judge the world. This is something that goes on in each of us but, as I said earlier, it's on display and amplified in kings, because all of the ruling and dominion and and things that we are called to exercise in general as sons of God are on particular display in a king, because here you have one who is not only called to this in a general kind of way, but in an amplified kind of way, ruling in an obvious way and in a in a big way over mankind. God, in other words, has given to these men authority and Power and greatness, a certain measure of honor and glory, even beyond third of their general glory they have as people made in the image of God. And what do they do with it? What does man choose to do with the glory and in and and Power and honor that God bestows upon him? They go after their own desires. They lust after more power, they add to their corruption. This is a warning to all those who find themselves in positions of power. Your Authority that is given to you does not belong to you to act as a God. You are called to act as a son of God. Of course, the same is true for all of us in any position of authority that we have, mothers, fathers, teachers, bosses, employers, mentors, and on and on and on. The larger catechism, question one hundred and twenty nine puts particularly sets forth in a specific way the duties of superiors, of those that God has granted authority to. How are they to treat those who are under...

...them? Well, they are to love, pray and bless for them. Pray for and bless them. They are to instruct, counsel and Admonish Superiors. Those in authority are to teach those who are under them to do well and to avoid evil, to protect and to provide with all this with a view to the glory of God in general and a glory of God shown specifically in their office. Is that what we see happening here in Genesis chapter six? Is that what we see happening in our own society and honestly, even in our own hearts? Are The those who are in authority acting in this way. Know, what are they doing? They're going out and grabbing what they think they want. They see women and grab them for their own and bring them and collect them into their into their homes, into their harems. When those empower bell against God's calling, they would be right to remember that God is their superior and God always does what is right. He doesn't ignore or smile and laugh at these kind of these sort of sinful the sinful actions, but he brings judgment. God doesn't, as a superior, go according to sinful pleasures, but according to justice and what is right. So when they neglect their duties seeking their own glory and ease and profit and pleasure, when they command and force people into unlawful things, encourage what is evil, dissuade what is good, leave them to danger and lead them to sin, they shame themselves and they take the glory of God that is supposed to shine in them and in their office and they cover it up with the excrement of their own sin. They defile themselves and they cause others to sin. They may be mighty, they may be men of renowned, they may be even called the sons of God, and yet they are mighty and they act in a way that is unto their death. We have to remember this when we think about how we exercise our own image, how we live as those made in the image of God. We remember this as we either exercise rule or live under the rule of other people. Above both superiors and inferiors, is God who is judge overall. Satan will encourage us to forget this, and he often has. Even some of the greatest and holiest people in scripture have fallen into these same sins that are mentioned here in Genesis six, David King Day, he saw a woman who was attractive and he took what did not...

...belong to him. Abraham did the same thing in desiring offspring Sarah, encouraging him a desiring offspring rather than according to God's Word and promises in his own way, and takes women to himself that did not belong to him. Solomon did the same thing and brought down the entire a kingdom of God as a result of it. Those who are in authority are right to remember these examples are to be cautious and careful about the sins that are in their own hearts, to not take what belong does not belong to them, to not use their power to oppress others and harm but there's also a message, of course, to inferiors. Satan will tempt you to think that, when, when you are put in a position like this, that life is hopeless and unfair, to despair of unrighteousness of all, to the spare of righteousness and to live as one who is dead, to give up hope on God, to give up hope on justice, and he will encourage you to respond and turn, to say, well, if you are oppressed, then the way out of it is to be an oppressor, to turn and to exercise what authority you can muster and you authority you can gain over other people. To these are the lies of Satan. But they are lies, aren't they? God, who represents himself to US, who tells us who he is in Genesistis, reminds us that these kings who act in this way, this perverse and despicable way, against the calling God has placed on them, that God sees, that God knows, the God judges, that God does not rule like men often rule. God judges and rules are recording to knowledge and righteousness and holiness, even when men do not and, as we will see in the coming chapters, God will judge great and terrible judgments, the destruction, as he will, as he says they're at the end of those first verses of chapter six, he says I will blot out man, whom I have created from the face of the earth, man and animals and creeping things and birds of the heavens, for I am sorry that I have made this judgment that comes and we will consider in the coming chapters as a judgment that's promised, not only here in the beginning years of the world, but also at the end. It is but a foretaste of the coming judgment, the last judgment that God promises to bring on all those who do not do as God has called them to do. But this judgment that we see in the flood,...

...a judgment that we see at the end of the world. We also see and the Cross of Christ, this judgment, the judgment where God pours out his wrath upon his son, upon the one who came to do what Adam failed to do. This is where we, as Christians, find and see our judgment, a judgment so that we are able to stand on the last day. This is important to remember because as we examine the sins of our own heart, the lusts of a flesh, the desires of our eyes, the pride of life, when we examine our own hearts and we see that we also defile the image that we were made, that we bring shame to the glory of God. When God's judgment is poured out on Jesus, for you, it is a reminder that God has made things right where you have made things wrong. It humbles us, doesn't it? But it also brings us great hope because it reminds us that, as I just said, where God where we have failed, God has succeeded, that where we have lost the things that God has made us to be, he has given them back to us and given them back to us in abundance and even eternal glory. Let me remind you that Jesus came to do what Adam failed to do, to bear the image of God. The scriptures explicitly say this, that he is the image of God, the he bears the radiance of his glory. Jesus was this as the second Adam, reminding remember that promise I mentioned earlier, to David's son and second Samuel Fourteen. This is a promise that is fulfilled in Jesus Christ, that this son of David, this man, this offspring of him and Eve, would be a son of God, not only is as a king in an earthly sense, but as a King over the heavens and the earth. He would be the son of Adam, he would be the son of David. David I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever. He would also be that great son of Abraham that was promised Josea one hundred and ten that I've mentioned. The net says that the number of the children of Israel shall be like the sand and the sea, which cannot be measured or numbered. Paul quotes this very verse in Romans Hundred and Twenty six to show that this is fulfilled in Christ, who brings in both Jews and gentiles into sonship and inheritance. Glacians three twenty nine tells us that this promise, this fruitful multiplying that is promised to Abraham, is happens in Christ.

Glaciers three twenty nine. If then, you are Christ's then you are Abraham's offspring. You See, when we are in Christ, we are God's sons. As I read earlier in Romans Ey. We receive that inheritance. We become fellow heirs with Jesus and are given everything that Jesus was given, the glory that he was given, the reigning and rule that he was given, the resurrection that Jesus was given, a life glorified. One more verse, Second Corinthians, for six, one of my favorite verses, for God, who said let light shine out of the darkness, has shown in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. The God who spoke in Genesis and said let there be light not only in the world but in the image of man, has now shone forth a second time, has shown forth his glory, the light of the knowledge of the glory of God, in the face of Jesus Christ. What does this mean then? It means that we, all of you who bear the image of God, which is to say all of you, every single one of you. All of you, therefore have the hope of forgiveness, hope of forgiveness and the hope of justice when we believe in Jesus Christ. To the oppressor, who has oppressed and who has exercised his or her rule in ways that sin against God, Sin Against the ways and the holiness that he has made us in. God promises in Jesus forgiveness. He promises that his sins, our sins are, are poured out on him so that we can be forgiven through his work and not our own. And to the oppressed who endures and calls out to God and says, where is my hope, where is my salvation? Again, God promises that in Jesus Christ there is hope that justice will happen. The here is one who reigns and sees and on the last day, will come to judge all the earth. Well, we, of course, each and every one of us, are both kings who oppress and ones who are oppressed by kings. We are those who both rule unjustly and endure the unjust rule of others. So we have double reasons, many reasons, a multitude of reasons, to turn to Jesus Christ, to see the glory of God, not in ourselves, which has been covered up by our sins, but to see the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. And so I say to you this morning I proclaim to you this morning and even warned to you this morning. Do not...

...delay. When God shows you his glory and tells you of his glory in The Sun that has come and promise you, is you, a glory that is eternal and restored and everything right and glorified in him, then do not wait, do not remain in your sins, do not remain walking according to the lusts of your flesh, because judgment comes to those who see and take according to the evils of their hearts, just as it came to noah and Noah's generation, it will come one day to the whole earth and all will be judged. But to those who do see the glory of God in the face of Jesus and take him by faith, they will not be judged on the last day but instead receive the glorious inheritance that is promised to the sons of God. And so there lies before you two ways you may take and you may see the evil desires of your heart and receive eternal condemnation for it, or you can see the glory of God and the face of Jesus Christ and receive by faith all that God gives to you and him and receive the internal eternal promises and that great inheritance that comes through him. Choose the latter. Put Your faith in Jesus Christ, because there you find forgiveness and justice and Hope Eternal. Let us pray and ask that God would grant us this faith.

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