I received an email recently from someone wanting to know about giants. She wanted to know if I believed if “all of the giant stories” are real or not. She then asked me to elaborate so I’m posting my response to her here.
Dear Sarah thank you for your recent email regarding “giants.” In your email you mention the “mighty men of old,” the “Anakim,” and the “Philistines.” These references are from the Old Testament of the Bible. The “mighty men of old” are alleged to be the offspring of fallen angels and human women. Nimrod was one of these “mighty men of old” and I don’t find anything indicating that he was a giant nor any taller than other men of his time. Nimrod was the King of Shinar (Mesopotamia) and a grandson of Noah. The biblical text says that he was a “mighty hunter” as well. He is also named as the builder of the famed Tower of Babel. Researchers have tried to connect Nimrod with a historical king found in the archaeological and historical records and there are varying opinions as to just who he was. Some scholars think he was Sargon the Great while others think Nimrod is purely a mythical figure. Others believe he may have been the historical Naram-Sin who was the grandson of King Sargon of Akkad as postulated by researchers Yigal Levin in 2002. Myth or historical figure? That is the first question I must ask when it comes to Nimrod. Whether he was or was not I find nothing to indicate he was a giant as I said but he could have well been one of the “mighty men of old” because legend has it that he was an angel-human hybrid.
Regarding the Anakim the biblical text describes them as having been a race of giants descended from Anak. They are said to have lived in the southern part of Canaan (the southern Levant) near Hebron. Their Hebrew name “Anaqim” means “strength, stature.” The Israelites identified them with the Nephilim giants and when Joshua drove them from the land some found refuge in Philistine cities such as Gaza. This, biblical scholars believe, led to interbreeding between the Anakim and Philistines that produced the alleged Philistine giants one of which was the famous Goliath whom David supposedly slayed with a slingshot of the battlefield. The Anakim are described as “strong and tall” and of mixed race of giant people. Question is how tall were they?
What must be kept in mind is that ancient people were not normally as tall as we are today so a person standing 4 or 5 feet tall would certainly think a person standing 6 ft 4 in. tall would be a “giant.” I don’t find anything historically or archaeologically to indicate the Anakim or the Philistines were “giants” other than they seem to have been people who were taller than the average person of the time. To bring this down to a personal level, I stand 6 feet tall and when I’ve encountered people standing 7 feet tall or taller I consider them “giants” and I describe them to others as “giants.” So the term “giant” is relative in my opinion. Continue Reading