Has God Always Been Loving?

From Has God Always Been Loving? by Greg Boyd

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13 comments

May 22, 2017

Hi. Love all the sermons. Just a question. I totally get where Greg is coming from in that it seems that God doesn’t want the slaughter of his children. But what if something more was going on in the land of Caanan? We see that nephilim are mentioned prior to the Flood and afterwards. And we see these Giants showing up in the Caananite tribes. If Adam and Eve caused the Fall, which produced internal sin to be present in man, these Fallen angels produced depravity into the human race by teaching man things they never should have been taught, and introducing their own children into the human gene pool. There are numerous accounts in the intertestamental period and the Book of Enoch to suggest that this was a huge issue. God destroyed the world because of their fallen offspring. But after the Flood, we see their presence again. Chuck Missler suggests they infected bloodlines with the mix of divine and human blood mixed, and if they are left to procreate, Christ would not be able to be born to man alone. Bit of a problem. So… if as Greg suggests, God just wanted to ‘move them on’ and not wipe them out…. where would that leave us i wonder? maybe the threat was so real, that they did indeed need to be eliminated? Maybe the Isrealties ‘thought’ God meant every woman and child, whereas maybe God just said… wipe out giant people…who knows. i know this sounds crazy, but if all those tribes were infected by nephilim blood ( and we see they were)….. how does this fit with what Greg is saying?

May 23, 2017

Michael S. Heiser preaches the same as Tracy Grant mentioned above. Nephilim infected the world with illicit behavior. They needed to be eliminated. Could they be the “vessels of wrath prepared beforehand for destruction”? Romans 9

May 24, 2017

I love the concept but respectfully disagree. Sorry. What about God “taking over the land” by a deluge of water – men, women, and children (but spare the animals)? God alone slaughtered everyone but Noah’s family. After that, God alone punished all of Egypt with torturous plagues and finally killed all of their firstborn. Either he’s a moral monster or something else is going on. Nephilim, Rephaim, Anakim….hybrids were taking the land and God’s people. Hebrews tells us that Jesus did not die to help the (fallen) angels. Maybe God’s love is beyond us and we don’t have to defend him or his methods?

May 24, 2017

Jesus told the crowds to love their enemies, which were the Romans. There’s no indication that he encouraged them to love the Pharisees, who were God’s enemies. Jews who were not really Jews, but a brood of vipers who were facing the wrath to come (70 AD) – the wicked generation that was guilty of the blood of all the prophets from Abel to Zechariah. The guilty ones who “trampled underfoot the blood of Christ when they continued to offer sacrifices after the resurrected Messiah.

Or am I missing something?

May 24, 2017

God alone condemned Sodom and Gomorrah – men, women, children, livestock.

And if God could enlighten Elisha to throw a feast for his enemies, he could’ve done the same with earlier prophets, could he not?

May 27, 2017

I wish someone could answer these questions….. they are legitimate questions, and i don’t know if Greg ever sees this, but it would be nice if someone who has a handle on what he talks about could answer.

May 28, 2017

Hi Tracy,

This may not provide all the answers that you are looking for, but it should set you on a path that could lead to some satisfaction.

Firstly, Molly is right in pointing in the direction of (Dr) Mike Heiser. He is the Scholar in Residence at Faithlife/Logos and is well qualified academically both in ancient languages and the history of the “Bible Lands”. He is also in a position of having access to a wide range of historical and archaeological documents and essentially only deals with peer reviewed materials. The reason I am commenting this way is that whoever is providing answers to your questions, you are seeking a level of trust that you are not being led up the garden path…which, at times, can happen. Additionally, when I first came across Mike, his name was associated with aliens, UFOs and Roswell and you have to scratch your head and say, what is going on here? But if you do get involved in listening or watching any of these talks (Youtube), you will begin to understand where he is coming from…and I don’t mean the lunatic sci-fi fringe.

With this introduction, I will let Greg indirectly answer some of your questions and finish with a follow-up on Mike.

Back in 2008, Greg did a review on Mike’s book then titled, “The Myth That Is True” that had some involvement with Greg’s Reknew website. The blog title is, “Boyd and Heiser Dialogue On The Nephilim Question”, and is found here,

http://reknew.org/2008/06/boyd-and-heiser-dialogue-on-the-nephilim-question/

There is a further follow-up here (“Heiser Clarifies Misunderstandings in My Review”),

http://reknew.org/2008/06/heiser-clarifies-misunderstandings-in-my-review/

And also,

http://reknew.org/2008/06/yahwehs-war-against-the-nephilim/

So there you have possible answers to a large ‘chunk’ of what may be swirling around in your mind. The point here is that Mike’s book was not published until May 2015 under the new title “The Unseen Realm – Recovering the supernatural worldview of the Bible”, (now listed in Greg’s Reknew ‘library’) that has been edited to cover and explain some of the objections (not only those raised by Greg) and includes newer material. There is also a ‘lighter’ edition called, “Supernatural: What the Bible Teaches About the Unseen World – and Why It Matters”. Both of these books are also available as Audible books.

I must admit that after reading these books, it can’t help but change your reading/understanding of the OT. Not in the sense of a radical rethink, but a more a reframe and fuller understanding of the OT…and its implications for the NT.

Mike has also just had published (a follow-up book, March 2017) “Reversing Hermon: Enoch, the Watchers, and the Forgotten Mission of Jesus Christ” that may also take your interest (Mike’s website is http://www.drmsh.com).

While there is much more that could be said, hopefully the above may help clarify some of your issues and, possibly, how this relates to Greg’s message.

May 28, 2017

@Tracy and Molly. The teachings of Missler and others are moot because of Ephesians 6:12

12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.

May 28, 2017

When I asked the Lord how these violent acts in the OT fit with His loving character, He told me several things. First, that the children who died went to be with Him for eternity, because they were still innocent. Secondly, He allowed these things as object lessons to the world of what the horrors of hell are like, so perchance some may repent and come to God. And third, He lovingly removed “peoples whose sinful times were full” because if He had let them remain on the earth they would have eventually infected the whole world with their evil, and the Lord would have had to destroy everyone. All of this shows His deep love for mankind.

May 30, 2017

Hi Tracy,

I received a response to your comment, from Greg:


Tracy,

I considered the Nephilim theory a while back but, for too many reasons to go into, I finally decided it wasn’t plausible. Among other things,

·This isn’t the reason given in the text for why Yahweh allegedly wanted to wipe them out
·The hyprid Nephilim were killed in the flood and there is no account of fallen angels co-habitating with women
·The two mentions of Nephilim in the conquest narrative only apply to two groups within Canaan,. Not to all Canaanites. And,
·It’s more likely than not. After Genesis 6, the term Nephilim came to mean “very tall.”

That’s my take anyway.

Bless you,
GB

June 3, 2017

Thanks guys for answering. Appreciate it. And Peter I have both Unseen Realms and Reversing Hermon so very familiar with the work of Heiser. Greg and Mike are my two favourite authors atm, and i listen regularly to Greg on the Blog. I really appreciate Greg’s passion and insight. Please thank him for responding Amanda. :)

June 5, 2017

Thanks Tracy, I tend to agree with your comments in the sense that, just as Greg (with WHC) provides great teaching, so also does Mike with his weekly podcast (TheNakedBible)…spoilt for choice!

June 10, 2017

Thank you Amanda C. and Greg; i for one am grateful that our comments here do not fall on deaf ears!

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Video Information

The underlying theme behind our 'Glimpses of Truth' series is the idea that before we had the full revelation of God in Jesus, people only caught glimpses of him. He showed himself, but like the sun on a cloudy day, people's view was obscured by their culture, so what they saw was not the full revelation but one marred by their own expectations and fallenness. But despite this, there were still a few instances in the Old Testament where we can see glimpses of the Christ-like God that we know.