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Bible study 14 Nephilim

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  1. The religion of the Nephilim

The religion of the Nephilim

1 Samuel 17:43b And the Philistines cursed David by his gods.

The Nephilim were the inventors of pagan religions in the OT. Although Joshua nearly eradicated the Nephilim, their spiritual practices lived on among their human subjects in the land of Canaan.When the Israelites conquered the land, a new challenge awaited them:resisting the pagan religions.Therefore, in his final words recorded in the Bible, Joshua spoke the following:

Joshua 24:14 Now therefore, fear the LORD, serve him in sincerity and faithfulness; put away the gods which your fathers served beyond the river and in Egypt, and serve the LORD.
15 But if it is evil in your eyes to serve the LORD, choose for yourself today whom you will serve: either the gods that your fathers who lived across the river served, or the gods of the Amorites, whose land you inhabit. But as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD!

The Israelites had seen all that God had done, all the miracles. Everything He had given them, because He loved them. All they had to do was continue to put their trust in God and serve no other gods. (Each time we see in the Bible that the false religions were in the centers of the Nephilim).

After Joshua's death, the Israelites stopped having CHEREM (ban) over the Canaanites and that was the first step to their spiritual pollution.

Judges 1:24 When the watchmen saw a man coming out of the city, they said to him, Surely let us see the entrance to the city, and we will show you mercy.
25. When he had shown them the entrance to the city, they struck it with the sharpness of the sword. But they let the man and all his family go.
26. Thereupon the man went to the land of the Hittites, built a city there, and gave it the name Luz. This is its name to this day.
27. Manasseh did not drive out the inhabitants of Beth-Sean and its towns, nor those of Taänach and its towns, the inhabitants of Dor and its towns, the inhabitants of Jibleam and its towns, and the inhabitants of Megiddo and its towns; the Canaanites wanted to remain in this land.
28. However, as Israel grew stronger, it happened that it imposed lordship on the Canaanites, but it did not drive them out completely.
29. Nor did Ephraim drive out the Canaanites who lived in Gezer, but the Canaanites continued to live in the midst of them in Gezer.
30. Zebulon did not drive out the inhabitants of Kitron or the inhabitants of Nahalol. The Canaanites continued to dwell in the midst of them and were forced into gentlemanly service.

And so the Israelites left Canaanites alive everywhere and failed to eradicate them entirely. These small sins would eventually lead to catastrophe.

The Israelites rebelled and worshipped Astharot, the god of the post-flood giants....

Judges 2:10 and also all that generation was united with its fathers, there arose after them another generation, which knew not the LORD, nor the deeds that He had done for Israel.
11. Then the Israelites did what was evil in the sight of the LORD and they served the Baals.
12. They left the LORD, the God of their fathers, Who had led them out of the land of Egypt, and went after other gods, gods of the nations that dwelt around them. They bowed down to them and provoked the LORD to wrath.
13. For they left the LORD and served Baal and Astartes.

Not Baal, but Astarte (Astharot) was the first pagan god mentioned in the Bible (Gen 14:5). Astarte was the god of the Moon and of Venus.  In Ephesus this god was called Artemis. People started worshipping heavenly bodies while Deut 4:19 strictly forbade it:

Deuteronomium 4:19 Wees ervoor op uw hoede dat u uw ogen niet opslaat naar de hemel, en de zon, de maan en de sterren ziet, heel het leger aan de hemel, en u laat verleiden om u voor hen neer te buigen en hen te dienen. De HEERE, uw God, heeft hen aan al de volken onder de hele hemel toebedeeld,

Deuteronomy 4:19 Be careful that you do not lift up your eyes to heaven, and see the sun, the moon, and the stars, all the army in the sky, and be tempted to bow down to them and serve them. The LORD your God has assigned them to all the nations under the whole heaven,

King Og had even named a city after Astarte in the days of Abraham and now the spiritual threat had become as great as the genetic threat.
So people started looking to the heavens and Nimrod had probably heard from his grandfather Cham about the superiority and technical/military ingenuity of the pre-flood giants. The Nephilim were the children of fallen angels who, after all, came from heaven. Therefore, they looked up to heaven and worshiped their ancestors that way.

The spiritual corruption only increased and soaked the entire promised land. At the time of David, the Philistines put Saul to death and brought his armor to the temple of....Astaroth.(Sam 31:10).

God repeatedly warned the Israelites about these idolatries in the land of Canaan:

Deuteronomy 18:9 When you come into the land that the LORD your God is giving you, you must not learn to act according to the abominations of those nations.
10. Among you shall not be found anyone who makes his son or his daughter go through the fire, who practices divination, who interprets clouds or does divination, who is a sorcerer,
11. who performs incantations, who consults a necromancer or a soothsayer, or who consults the dead.
12. For everyone who does such things is an abomination to the LORD. And because of these abominations the LORD your God is driving these nations out of their possession from before your eyes.
13. Sincerely you must be toward the LORD your God.
14. For these nations, whom you will drive out of their possessions, listen to cloud-thinkers and soothsayers. But the LORD your God has not allowed you to do so.

In the Bible, angels are often compared to stars.  Thus ancestor worship was found among the Nephilim who, like the post-flood giants, wanted to communicate with their ancestors, the fallen angels.
The idolatry took such forms that it threatened the entire nation of Israel and with it the Messianic bloodline!

Choose therefore this day whom ye will serve....

Judges 3:1 Now these are the nations which the LORD allowed to remain to test Israel by them, that is, all the Israelites who did not know of all the wars with Canaan,
2. only that the younger generations of the Israelites might know of it, to teach them the war, only them who knew not of it before:
3. five princes of the Philistines, and all the Canaanites, the Sidonians, and the Hevites, who dwelt in the mountain country of Lebanon, from Mount Baal-Hermon down to Lebo-Hamath.
4 . They were there to test Israel by them, that they might know whether they would listen to the commandments of the LORD, which He had commanded their fathers through the service of Moses.

It was to test the Israelites, who were from after Joshua's time. God used the remnants of the Nephilim to enable the Israelites to choose. However, they failed hopelessly:

Judges 3:5 Now when the Israelites dwelt in the midst of the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Amorites, the Ferezites, the Hevites, and the Jebusites,
6. they took their daughters for wives, and gave their own daughters to their sons. And they served their gods.
7. And the Israelites did what was evil in the sight of the LORD, and they forgot the LORD their God, and served the Baals and the consecrated posts.

The Tamarisk (shrub)... a pagan corruption of the Garden of Eden

Abraham planted a Tamarisk in honor of God. The Nephilim used the bush to place their idols in it, indicating that they longed to return to the Garden of Eden. And so shrubs (consecrated posts) became a tragic image of the Garden of Eden.
In Deut 16: 21 God forbade to use it:

Deuteronomy 16:21 You shall not place at the altar of the LORD your God, which you shall make for yourself, a consecrated pole of any kind of tree.

At the time of the Judges, Israel lapsed into extensive worship of false gods. Gideon, for example, was condemned to death because he knocked down a consecrated pole.

The worship of the Lord of the heavenly places....

Here was something the Israelites also indulged in: the worship of the sun, moon, and stars. Angels are often associated with heavenly bodies (Isaiah 14 and Revelation) and this is typically something of the Nephilim. There is a connection between invisible angels and the stars we see at night. The Bible calls them both "lord of the heavenly places" (superior of the sky...)

(When Satan was cast out of heaven (Isaiah 14, Revelation 12) he ended up in the 2nd heaven. The 1st heaven is our atmosphere, the 2nd heaven is outside the atmosphere and is our starry sky, the 3rd heaven is the dwelling place of God. Initially, God dwelt there with all His angels but after the fall of Satan, the latter with 1/3 of the angels was cast out of there.
Satan has been cast out of the 3rd heaven and is now invisible in the 2nd heaven. That is why he is called ruler of the air or lord of the heavenly places).

The Nephilim tried to undermine God's authority by going to worship the stars.Israel embraced this religion and Amos warned them about it just before they went into exile:

Amos 5:7 Woe to them who turn justice into wormwood,
who make righteousness lie on the earth.
8. He Who made the Seven Star and the Orion,
Who turns the shadow of death into morning light,
Who makes the day dark as the night,
Who pours out the waters of the sea calls over the surface of the earth:LORD is His Name!
26. You have carried around Sikkut, your king,
and Kewan, your images,
the stars, your gods, which you have made to yourselves!
(KJV: But you have borne the tabernacle of your Moloch and Chiun your images, the star of your god, which you made to yourselves.)
27. Therefore I will lead you into exile,
beyond Damascus, says the LORD;
God of hosts is His Name.

Stephen also refers to it just before his death:

Acts 7:42 And God turned away and gave them up to serve the army of heaven, as it is written in the book of the prophets: Did you also offer victims and sacrifices to Me, house of Israel, during the forty years in the wilderness? (celestial army here is "lord of the heavenly places"). 

The Nephilim worshipped their ancestors...

The pre-flood giants and their post-flood descendants worshipped their ancestors, the fallen angels. Hence the worship of the stars (horoscope).

Israel's desire for a king led to spiritual disaster

1 Samuel 8:5 They said to him, Behold, you have grown old, and your sons do not go in your ways. Therefore appoint a king over us to give us guidance, like all the nations.6. Then they said: Give us a king to give us guidance, this word was evil in the sight of Samuel. And Samuel prayed to the LORD.7. But the LORD said to Samuel, Give ear to the voice of the people in all that they say to you; for they have not rejected you, but ME they have rejected, that I should not be King over them.

"You will be like God" Satan said to Eve. Here we see that man wanted to save himself by being a god himself and disobeying God himself.
In the same mindset was the call for a king (after all, all the countries around had a pagan king). A human king who ruled over all people. The Assyrian king was the first to be named (a Nephilim!), then Nimrod after the flood. He showed that not only can you have military power over people, but also spiritual power.

God's plan for an earthly government was not a human king (or angel) over the nations. He Himself ruled over Israel! The judges (judges) were appointed to keep God's law and to lead the people. Judges were not kings, for God was their king. See Gideon in Judges 8:

Judges 8:22 Then the men of Israel said to Gideon, Rule over us, both you and your son and your grandson, for you have delivered us from the hand of Midian.
23. But Gideon said to them, I will not rule over you, nor will my son rule over you: the LORD will rule over you.

How soon will mankind move on to human solutions and forget that God redeems them (Climate religion today?).
Their desire for a king was the result of influence by the lands around them among which lived Canaanites descended from the Nephilim.
And with this the people were spiritually defiled.

Although Samuel warned them, this choice had a disastrous consequence for Israel.
Saul was the first to rebel against God and consult a witch. That had never happened before!Solomon , the 3rd king, was defiled by marriages. He married 700 wives and 300 concubines from many nations, even the Nephilim (Hittites). Not only did he ignore God's commandment of monogamy, but the women brought their idols and he allowed them to be worshipped.
Jeroboam made golden calves as gods and did even worse....:

2 Koningen 17:9 De Israëlieten hadden dingen bedacht die niet juist zijn tegenover de HEERE, hun God; zij hadden in al hun steden offerhoogten voor zich gebouwd, van de wachttoren af tot de versterkte steden toe.
10. Zij hadden gewijde stenen en gewijde palen voor zich opgericht, op elke hoge heuvel en onder elke bladerrijke boom.
11. Zij hadden daar, op alle offerhoogten, reukoffers gebracht, zoals de heidenvolken die de HEERE had weggevoerd, van vóór hun ogen. Zij hadden slechte dingen gedaan om de HEERE tot toorn te verwekken.

18. De HEERE was zeer toornig op Israël, zodat Hij hen wegdeed van Zijn aangezicht. Er bleef niets over dan alleen de stam van Juda.

After all, in the tribe of Judah the Messianic bloodline would continue.

All the kings came from bad to worse, sometimes there was an exception. The last king Manasseh, did everything God had forbidden. Manasseh sacrificed his children to Moloch and Chiun and even brought an idol into the temple (both Nephilim practices) and thus Satan had achieved to take his place in the temple of God (will also take place later in the end of the 7 years of tribulation).

The valley of Ben-Hinnom (gehenna = realm of the dead = hell), the connection between the Nephilim and the child sacrifices.
2 Chronicles 33:6 It was he who made his sons go through the fire in the valley of Ben-Hinnom, he interpreted clouds, did divination, did sorcery, and appointed conjurers and soothsayers. He did very much only in the sight of the LORD, to provoke Him to wrath.
Joshua 18:16 Then the border runs down to the edge of the mountain that is opposite the valley Ben-Hinnom, which is in (north of) the valley of the Refaites. Then it runs down through the Valley of Hinnom, toward the south side of the ridge of the Jebusites, and continues down to the spring of Rogel.
2 Chronicles 28:1 Achaz was twenty years old when he became king, and he reigned sixteen years in Jerusalem; he did not do what was right in the sight of the LORD like his father David,
2. but he went in the ways of the kings of Israel. Moreover, he made cast images for the Baals.
3. It was he who made incense offerings go up in smoke in the valley of Ben-Hinnom. He burned his sons in the fire, according to the abominations of the heathen nations whom the LORD had driven out from before the eyes of the Israelites.
The valley of Hinnom was not, as is often described, southwest of Jerusalem, but on the east side, between the Mount of Olives and Jerusalem (Jeremiah 19:1-2). Kidron was not a separate valley, but the east side of the Hinnom valley. The east side of the temple was the main entrance and it was precisely there that the center of rebellion against God was. Just as in Genesis where Adam and Eve had to leave paradise on the east side.Here they sacrificed their children to the fallen angels!!
Satan's plan to spiritually defile Israel had succeeded

The Hinnom valley was the site of the specific child sacrifice. It was a place where the fire was always burning. Jesus refers to this valley 3 times, for which he uses the Greek word ge-ennah. He calls it "hell"!
Jesus sees the Nephilim's place of sacrifice as hell.....

In the end, the whole people were consumed with occult practices because of the satanic influence of the Nephilim. They became as bad as the Canaanite peoples who had to be exterminated.

God distanced Himself from the people:

Ezekiel 16:1 The word of the LORD came to me:
2. Son of man, let Jerusalem know its abominations,
3. and say, Thus saith the Lord LORD to Jerusalem, Your origin and your birth are from the land of the Canaanites. Your father was that Amorite and your mother a Hethite. (spiritually a Nephilim and physically a Nephilim).
4. As for your birth, on the day you were born, your umbilical cord was not cut, you were not washed clean with water, nor were you rubbed with salt, much less wrapped in cloths.

Intimate marriage was set as an example between God and Israel who had been destroyed by adultery as in Genesis 6 Satan defiled the marriage.

The spiritual corruption of the people of Israel was satan's most powerful tool to disrupt the bloodline of the Messiah. The people were largely lost, but a remnant always remained. Out of that remnant, the Messiah was born......!