Saturday, November 21, 2015

409,000 Giants Died in the Flood Per the Book of Baruch

There are two versions of the Book of Baruch that mention the death of giants.  One says over 104,000 Giants died in the flood (Slavonic Version) and the other version says 409,000 Giants died in the flood (Greek Version).

And the angel said to me, "Rightly you ask me.  When God made the Flood upon the earth, he drowned every firstling, and he destroyed 104 thousand giants, and the water rose above the highest mountains 20 cubits above the mountains, and the water entered into the garden, bringing out one shoot from the vine as God withdrew the waters.

And there was dry land, and Noah went out from the ark and found the vine lying on the ground, and did not recognize it having only heard about it and its form.

He thought to himself, saying, "this is truly the vine which Satanael planted in the middle of the garden, by which he deceived Eve and Adam; because of this God cursed it and its seed.  So if I plant it, then will God not be angry with me?'

And I Baruch said, "Behold, lord, you have shown me great and wondrous things.  Now show me all, for the Lord's sake.:

And the angel said tome, "Come, let us go through"...with the angel from that place, a journey of about 185 days.

And he showed me a plain and a serpent who appeared to be stone.  And he showed me Hades, and its appearance was gloomy and unclean.

And I said, "What is this dragon and this monster around it?"

And the angel said,"This dragon is the one which eats the bodies of those who pass through their lives badly, and he is nourished by them.

And this is Hades which is like him, in that also he drinks about one cubit form the sea, and nothing is diminished from it (i.e. the sea)."

Baruch said, "And how is that?" and the angel said, "Listen, the Lord God made 360 rivers, the primary ones of them being the Alphias, the Aburos, and the Gerikos, and because of these the sea is not diminished."

And I said, "I pray to you , show me which is the tree which caused Adam to stray,"  And the angel said, "It is the vine which the angel Samael planted by which the Lord god became angered, and he cursed him and his plantling.  For this reason he did not permit Adam to touch it.  And because of this the devil became envious and tricked him by means of his vine.

And I Baruch said, "And since the vine became the cause of such evil and was cursed by God and (was) the destruction of the first formed, how is it now of such great use?"

And the angel said, "Rightly you ask; when God caused the Flood over the earth and destroyed all flesh and 409,000 giants," and the water rose over the heights 15 cubits, the water entered paradise and killed ever flower, but it removed the sprig of the vine completely and brought it outside."

And when the earth appeared from the water and Noah left the ark, he started to plant (some) of the discovered plants.

He also found the sprig, and talking it, he considered in his mind what it was.  And I came and told him about it.

And he said, 'Should I plant it, or what (should I do with it)?  Since Adam was destroyed by means of it," will I also encounter the anger of God through this?'

And while saying these things, he prayed for God to reveal to him what he should do with this.
And he knelt down on (his) knees and fasted 40days.  Praying and crying , he said, 'Lord, if I plant this, what will happen?'And the Lord sent the angel Sarasael:  he declared to him, 'Rise, Noah, and plant the vine, and alter its name, and change it for the better.

"But beware, Baruach:  The tree still possesses its evil.

Those who drink wine in excess do all evil:  Brother does not show mercy to brother, nor father to son, nor son to father.  And from the evil of wine, comes forth murder and adultery, fornication and cursing, as much evil as exists, because of wine"
- James H. Charlesworth, The Old Testament Pseudepigrapha Volume 1, Pages 666 – 668.


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