Does the equivalent of bene ha elohim (בְנֵי־הָֽאֱלֹהִים֙) in Gen. 6:2,4; Job 2:1 ever refer to Believers in the NT? When we are born of the Spirit, do we become bene ha elohim, a new creation?

  • Hi afk, welcome. Have a look here. Search for the term "bene ha'elohim" and I think that reading might be handy for you. – Tiago Martins Peres 李大仁 Dec 19 '20 at 0:35
  • Maybe you’re thinking of holy ones and saints, they have equivalency in the OT and NT. – Nihil Sine Deo Dec 19 '20 at 3:48

There are only a few instances that the text draws on this equivalency through the Greek of the LXX and the Greek of the NT but that doesn’t make them true equivalents


“υιοι του θεου” Genesis 6:4


The first being Adam who was not born but created just like all the other sons of God (with the exception of the Angel of the Lord who took on a heavenly body, He being God and a spirit, all heavenly hosts/angels have heavenly bodies).

υιος Luke 3:23 ... του θεου  Luke 3:38


τεκνα θεου John 1:12, Philippians 2:15, 1 John 3:1,2

Yet here it’s not son or sons but child of God.

υιοι θεου Romans 8:14,19

This is probably the closest to the OT

The sons of God however were immortal, we know this because some of them lost their immortality when they were punished for abrogating their responsibilities as per

I have said, Ye are gods; and all of you are children of the most High. But ye shall die like men, and fall like one of the princes. Psalm 82:6,7

This is future tense, they will die, men are already mortals, to punish a man with mortality when they are already mortal is not a punishment.

The sons of God met in the air to attend the divine council which in Biblical cosmology is the second heaven above the clouds

For who in the sky can be compared unto the LORD? who among the sons of the mighty can be likened unto the LORD? Psalm 89:6

The sons of God, some of them were endowed with the responsibility of being intermediaries between men and The God of Heaven at Babel. This was at a time when Israel was not even born and Abraham was not even chose

“When the Most High gave to the nations their inheritance, when he divided mankind, he fixed the borders of the peoples according to the number of the sons of God.” ‭‭Deuteronomy‬ ‭32:8‬ ‭

In some sense the nations will be ruled by believers

“The one who conquers and who keeps my works until the end, to him I will give authority over the nations, and he will rule them with a rod of iron, as when earthen pots are broken in pieces, even as I myself have received authority from my Father.” ‭‭Revelation‬ ‭2:26-27‬ ‭

There isn’t a one for one equivalency between the sons of God of the OT and references in the NT. In some sense humans will replace those who have been punished and damned to hell but humans did not start off as sons of God only Adam did.

  • A very good overview, +1. Couple of things, - Adam was a son of God - until he ‘fell’. Believers have this relationship restored, so the term sons of God as it relates to believers is equivalent to the O.T. usage. And, your use of mortality as a synonym for death - Death ‘biblically’ always means separation. So the term ‘die like men’ means that the sons of God (psalm 82) will be eternally separated.(from God). – Dave Dec 21 '20 at 17:23
  • Appreciate the feed back. I’ll dwell on it for sure – Nihil Sine Deo Dec 21 '20 at 17:44

The phrase, υἱοί Θεοῦ ("sons of God") occurs just seven times in the NT as follows:

  1. Matt 5:9 - Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called sons of God.
  2. Luke 20:36 - In fact, they can no longer die, because they are like the angels. And since they are sons of the resurrection, they are sons of God.
  3. Rom 8:14 - For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God
  4. Rom 8:19 - The creation waits in eager expectation for the revelation of the sons of God.
  5. Rom 9:26 - and, “It will happen that in the very place where it was said to them, ‘You are not My people,’ they will be called ‘sons of the living God.’ ” (Quoting Hosea 1:10)
  6. Gal 3:26 - For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.
  7. Gal 4:6 - And because you are sons, God sent the Spirit of His Son into our hearts, crying out, “Abba, Father!” [This one does not have the exact phrase but it is close in meaning.]

In all these NT cases, these refer to redeemed, saved, believing humans.

  • That is true but contextually this is only through adoption. Rom8:15,23, 9:4, Gal4:5 Eph1:5. No believer including Israeli/Hebrew/Jew Rom9:4 start off as sons of God, it’s all by adoption/transfer into. But agree with you the term does appear in the NT even if (at a minimum I) don’t find the two, to be direct equivalents, the former heavenly hosts, the later humans awaiting a heavenly body. Thank you and 1+ for the list. – Nihil Sine Deo Dec 19 '20 at 14:21

In the Old Testament (Tanakh) בְנֵי־הָֽאֱלֹהִים֙ occurs in Gen. 6:2,4; Job 2:1. However, it is disputed who they are in Gen. 6, and they are angelic beings in Job 2:1. In Job 38:7 בְּנֵ֥י אֱלֹהִֽים occurs without the article; maybe also angelic beings. The Septuagint (LXX) translates Gen. 6:2,4 as οἱ υἱοὶ τοῦ θεοῦ, Job 2:1 as οἱ ἄγγελοι τοῦ θεοῦ, and Job 38:7 as ἄγγελοί μου.

The related language in the New Testament denotes different people from the Old Testament usage. The usage all denotes Christians except in Rom. 9:26 denotes Israel. The Bible Society in Israel uses בְּנֵי–הָאֱלֹהִים to translate τὰ τέκνα τοῦ θεοῦ in John 11:52. The phrase τὰ τέκνα τοῦ θεοῦ in 1 John 3:10; 5:2 is translated with יַלְדֵי הָאֱלֹהִים. John 1:12; Rom. 8:16; Phil. 2:15; 1 John 3;2 has τέκνα θεοῦ without the articles and is translated בָּנִים לֵאלֹהִים (John 1:12; Phil. 2:15), שֶׁבָּנִים לֵאלֹהִים (Rom. 8:16), יַלְדֵי אֱלֹהִים (1 John 3:2). The phrase υἱοὶ θεοῦ occurs in Mat. 5:9; Rom. 8:14; 9:26; Gal 3:26 and are translated בְּנֵי אֱלֹהִים (Matt. 5:9; Gal. 3:26), בָּנִים הֵם לֵאלֹהִים. (Rom. 8:14), בְּנֵי אֵל–חָי (Rom. 9:26),

Thus, the Greek phrases equivalent to בְנֵי־הָֽאֱלֹהִים֙ do mean believers in the New Testament. However, the usage in the Old Testament has no relationship to the usage in the New Testament.

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