We've all heard the basic story of Noah as recounted in Genesis. But if you look outside of the bible, you find a whole lot more about him, from reputable sources like the Dead Sea Scrolls and the Book of Enoch.
Let me begin with this infamous quote from Genesis:
Genesis 6:4 There were giants in the earth in those days; and also after that, when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bare children to them, the same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown.
The Hebrew for 'giants' there is Nephilim
, a plural, whose root Naphal
means "to fall". This is where the term 'fallen angels' comes from. These beings were not from here, and came here in direct opposition to the will of God as the book of Jude in the New Testament reminds us:
Jude 1:6 And the angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day.
Long story short, the Book of Enoch describes how a group of "sons of God", or angels, decided, against God's will, to come down to earth and play, taking human wives who bore them children who turned out to become giants, but also doing much, much worse. Their superior technical knowledge enabled them to create genetic hybrids of all kinds—bizarre creatures like Centaurs, cyclops, half-man, half horse, and dozens more. With callous disregard for the natural order, they had their fun in our gene pool and completely ruined any chance of a good world, as described in this verse in Genesis.
Genesis 6:12 And God looked upon the earth, and, behold, it was corrupt; for all flesh had corrupted their way upon the earth.
Notice it says "all flesh" not just humans. This seems to fit the Enoch narrative well—the earth was filled with corrupted genes. It was because of this that God brought the flood, to wipe everything out and start over with Noah.
Genesis 6:9 These are the generations of Noah: Noah was a just man and perfect in his generations, and Noah walked with God.
The term perfect in his generations
, in light of the above facts, seems to mean that Noah was genetically pure, i.e. not a hybrid created by the fallen angels. He was also a just man who walked with God. It makes sense to start over with a good, normal human, right?
But here's the twist: Noah was not
an ordinary human.
Dead Sea Scrolls - Book of Noah 6:1-6 And after some days my son Methuselah took a wife for his son Lamech, and she became pregnant by him and bore a son. And his body was white as snow and red as the blooming of a rose, and the hair of his head and his long locks were white as wool, and his eyes beautiful. And when he opened his eyes, he lighted up the whole house like the sun, and the whole house was very bright. And thereupon he arose in the hands of the midwife, opened his mouth, and conversed with the Lord of righteousness. And his father Lamech was afraid of him and fled, and came to his father Methuselah. And he said unto him: I have begotten a strange son, diverse from and unlike man, and resembling the sons of the God of heaven; and his nature is different and he is not like us, and his eyes are as the rays of the sun, and his countenance is glorious. And it seems to me that he is not sprung from me but from the angels, and I fear that in his days a wonder may be wrought on the earth.
And just the other day, I learned this additional detail: Noah was born circumcised:
The Legends of the Jews When the Lord said to Adam, "Cursed is the ground for thy sake," he asked, "For how long a time?" and the answer made by God was, "Until a man child shall be born whose conformation is such that the rite of circumcision need not be practiced upon him." This was fulfilled in Noah, he was circumcised from his mother's womb.
So although he was reportedly genetically perfect, he was not at all like a normal human being. Which leads me to conclude that our overseers made some genetic adjustments resulting in what we might call Human Being 2.0. Like Jesus, it would appear his true father was not of this world, which Lamech suspected. And Methuselah seemed to know something about Noah that Lamech did not know, saying Noah is indeed his child and was destined to change the world. And so he did.
By the way, the hebrew name Noah means comfort and peaceful. I'm thinking he was so named because he presided over the end of the former chaotic world in which men were in constant fear of the giants and monstrosities created by the fallen angels. Perhaps this is why, when the LORD spoke to Moses after the flood, he promised him that the animals of the earth would all fear man, not the other way around:
Genesis 9:1-2 And God blessed Noah and his sons, and said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth. And the fear of you and the dread of you shall be upon every beast of the earth, and upon every fowl of the air, upon all that moveth upon the earth, and upon all the fishes of the sea; into your hand are they delivered.