The sons of God in Genesis 6:1-4

Doedens, Jacob Johannes Theodoor (2013) The sons of God in Genesis 6:1-4. Doctoral thesis.

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Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral thesis)
Titel: The sons of God in Genesis 6:1-4
Samenvatting (EN): The Sons of God in Genesis 6:1–4 studies the meaning and function of the narrative in Genesis 6:1–4 about the ‘sons of God’ who beget offspring with the ‘daughters of men’. In the exegesis of this passage, the expression ‘sons of God’ constitutes the axis around which the whole story turns: is the narrative referring to heavenly beings or to earthly beings, who, for one reason or another, can be qualified as ‘sons of God’? These two main lines of exegesis split into four approaches: the so called ‘angels-interpretation’, the ‘mighty ones-interpretation’, the ‘Sethites-interpretation’, and the ‘divine beings-interpretation’. The study concludes that there is insufficient grounds to argue in favour of approaches which consider the ‘sons of God’ to be human beings, be it potentates or Sethites. The angels-interpretation appears to be a too specific solution. The best solution is the exegesis which explains the expression ‘sons of God’ as referring to heavenly beings not otherwise specified, a wording that might refer to ‘other gods’, as well. This interpretation presents the theological difficulty that it appears to be in conflict with a mainstream of monotheism in the Old Testament, which does not accept other gods next to YHWH. Comparison with other texts within the Old Testament results in the observation that the ‘sons of God’ in almost all other occurrences function as a ‘contrasting device’ to emphasise the uncomparable greatness of YHWH. Read in such a way, Genesis 6:1–4 offers a narrative which uses contemporary motives in a polemic sense. In accordance with a part of the history of exegesis of this passage, it is suggested that Genesis 6:1–4 alludes to the origin of idolatry, which is depicted as an illegitimate means to make a connection between heaven and earth.
ISBN: 9789630876230
Number of Pages: 442
Theologische Universiteit: Theologische Universiteit Kampen
Trefwoorden (NL): Genesis;, exegese
Trefwoorden (EN): Genesis; exegesis
Date Deposited: 17 Jun 2015 08:41
Last Modified: 06 Jan 2016 13:18
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