Podcast: Rebellious Angels in Jude 6
Jude’s overall context is dealing with false teachers in the church. These false teachers “pervert the grace of God into sensuality.” The teachers will get what they deserve on Judgement Day for their sexual immorality just, as the angels will be judged for their immorality.
Genesis 6 also references angels participating in sexual immorality and further corrupting humanity.
What Did the Jews of That Time Believe About Genesis 6?
There is a book in the Apocrypha called 1 Enoch. This book is mythical and not inspired by God, but it gives some valuable insight into what is happening.
Jude quotes Enoch as the Jews understood it—as angels corrupting humanity and God punishing those angels for their rebellion. In this context, Jude would answer, “What happened to the sons of God who mated with the daughters of men?” The answer is that, “they are kept in chains and in gloomy darkness.”
The more naturalistic view of Genesis 6 is to view the sons of God as good and morally upright people, and they mate with the daughters of men, who are evil. In this view, there is no “angel” component.
Why Did Jude Quote and Use the Book of Enoch?
The mythical expansion in Enoch of the accurate account of Genesis 6 tends to go way beyond what Moses intended when he wrote Genesis. Nothing in Jude alludes to the fact that he believed the entire book of Jude, hook, line, and sinker. Instead, Moses pulls from Enoch as an example of what happens to disobedient people.
Brittany Proffitt lives in Dallas, TX, holds a BA in Religion, and is a student at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary.