Viewing the King James Version. Click to switch to 1611 King James Version of Genesis 6:5.
- King James Bible "Authorized Version", Cambridge Edition
View Wesley's Notes for Genesis 6:5
6:5 And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth - Abundance of sin was committed in all places, by all sorts of people: and those sins in their own nature most gross and heinous, and provoking: and committed daringly, with a defiance of heaven. And that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually - A sad sight, and very offensive to God's holy eye. This was the bitter root, the corrupt spring: all the violence and oppression, all the luxury and wantonness that was in the world, proceeded from the corruption of nature; lust conceives them, #Jas 1:15|, see Mt 15:19. The heart was evil, deceitful and desperately wicked; the principles were corrupt, and the habits and dispositions evil. The thoughts of the heart were so. Thought is sometimes taken for the settled judgment, and that was biased and misled; sometimes for the workings of the fancy, and those were always either vain or vile. The imagination of the thought of the heart was so, that is, their designs and devices were wicked. They did not do evil only through carelessness, but deliberately and designedly, contriving how to do mischief. 'Twas bad indeed, for it was only evil, continually evil, and every imagination was so. There was no good to be found among them, no not at any time: the stream of sin was full and strong, and constant; and God saw it. Here is God's resentment of man's wickedness. He did not see it as an unconcerned spectator, but as one injured and affronted by it; he saw it as a tender father sees the folly and stubbornness of a rebellious and disobedient child, which not only angers but grieves him, and makes him wish he had been written childless.
RAY MCKENDRY's comment on 2012-08-25 00:18:00:
I think Gen 6:5 is a text that comes from before the fall and before the promises made to Noah and mankind by God regarding Him not destroying the earth via a general flood again. (Gen 9:11) Gen 6:5 is a difficult verse to interpret because of its context which includes "sons of God" and "giants on the earth" (NKJV). Why does this make any difference? Simply because Bible critics have always thought it falls into the realms of "myth." As they say Gen Ch.1-11 do!
I do not believe it's myth; not even technically myth (muthos). But that does mean I understand what the "sons of God" were or why there were giants or what significance the giants were to salvation, man's character, or God's intention in creation.
However, verse 5 tells us that God was finished with mankind and this gives us the explanation why. Man was corrupt to the extent that God was sorrowful and wanted to start again! It seems amazing but He did restart mankind via the flood scenario which was universal. Only 8 people survived the flood and they were far from perfect for they still contained within themselves the seeds of sin and proved this soon after the flood was over. (Gen 9:21 Noah got drunk and naked and later the people built the Tower of Babel which God stopped and scattered the people. Gen 11:1-9.)
The doctrine of human depravity is clearly displayed here. It is clear that we have sinned and because we thus display that we all have a sinful nature, we need a sacrifice to appease God whose holy anger burns against us. This sacrifice was revelaed later in the Bible as Jesus Christ. Thank God for His indescribable gift! We all need Him as our Saviour and we need to repent and put our trust in Him.
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