Book of Giants


The Book of Giants is an apocryphal Jewish book which expands the Urzeit to Endzeit ('primeval creation' to 'end of time') narrative of the Hebrew Bible and, by its multifaceted elaborations on divine decrees of warning and doom, ties the ancient prophet Enoch (ḥanôk) closer to his generally recognized 'storyline' (as collectively put forth in various Enochic traditions) than does even the story's principal treatise of 1 Enoch. Together with 1 Enoch's Book of Watchers, as Enochian scholar James C. VanderKam maintains, "it stands as an attempt to explain how it was that wickedness had become so widespread and muscular before the flood; in so doing, it also supplies the reason why God was more than justified in sending that flood." The Giants discovery at Qumran dates the text's creation to before the 2nd century BC.The Book of Giants is an antediluvian (pre-Flood) narrative that was received primarily in Manichaean literature and known at Turfan. However, the earliest known traditions for the book originate in Aramaic copies of a Book of Giants among the Dead Sea Scrolls. References to the Giants mythology are found in: Genesis 6:1-4, the books of Enoch (Ethiopic, Slavonic, Hebrew, Greek), Jubilees, Genesis Apocryphon, 2 and 3 Baruch (Slavonic), the Damascus Document, and visions in Daniel 7:9-14. This book tells of the background and fate of these ante-deluvial giants and their fathers, the Watchers (called grigori in the Slavonic 2 Enoch), the 'sons of God' or 'holy ones' (Daniel 4:13, 17) who rebelled against heaven when — in forbidden violation of the strict "boundaries of creation" — they commingled, in their lust, with the 'daughters of men.'Their even more corrupt offspring, the giants, were variously called thereafter nephilim, gibborim, or rephaim, being the earthly half-breed races that fought against God and his righteous followers whose numbers diminished as the world was overwhelmed with corruption and evil; the Manichaean fragments give these wicked ones the general name demons (Greek Enoch calls them bastards). Though the terms for the Watchers and their offspring are often confused in their various translations and iterations, collectively these rebellious races are referred to as the "fallen angels" in the apocryphal sources, as also in the biblical narratives that reference them.
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