“Space gods made me, this I know,
For the Bible tells me so. . . .”[1]

Prior to the publication of Barry H. Downing’s The Bible and Flying Saucers in 1968, Morris K. Jessup put forth a similar thesis in an attempt to reconcile the Bible, science, and belief in extraterrestrials: The biblical writers misunderstood unusual and seemingly supernatural phenomena and believed that a God was at work when in reality it was extraterrestrial space aliens. In 1956, Jessup wrote the following in UFO and the Bible: “The skeptic—honest, dishonest, or self-deluded—will wonder why we appear to be blaspheming Christianity and the Good Book. The answer is, bluntly, we are doing no such thing! What we are doing is to rationalize and substantiate the Bible in the light of modern science, common sense, and a host of bewildering and unexplained events of UFO nature.”[2] Jessup believed that “There are rational explanations. Nothing is supernatural, for nothing that exists can be outside nature, and this includes God, Who Is Nature. Our difficulty, and that of the clergy, has been in trying to ‘explain’ paranormal occurrences by means of non-existent causes.[3] It is the purpose of this brief book to show that: (1) There is a causal common denominator for many of the Biblical wonders; and, (2) That this common cause is related to the phenomena of the UFO, both directly and indirectly.”[4]

Science fiction writers who have an anti-Christian agenda have picked up on the thesis of aliens as clandestine gods and projected their worldview on television and film. In “Who Mourns for Adonis?” of the Star Trek TV series,[5] science fiction writer Gene Roddenberry (1921–1991) proposed the concept that gods were actually superior alien beings that had visited earth in long ages past. Traveling through space, the Enterprise is captured by a mysterious force field that appears as a gigantic human hand. Kirk leads an expedition to the planet’s surface where his expeditionary crew encounters what seems to be the Greek god Apollo who uses force to compel “his subjects” to worship him as a divine being. It turns out that he’s no god at all but an alien with superior technical and scientific power.[6] He was able to fool the primitives on earth centuries ago, but as earthlings got more scientifically sophisticated, these alien superior beings no longer could convince them into believing they were gods. They departed Earth to find more primitive species to fool.

Consider the Twilight Zone episode “To Serve Man” (March 2,1962). Seemingly beneficent aliens arrive in spaceships and make their science and medicine available to the scientists of Earth. The people of Earth let their guard down when they find a book left by the aliens with the title To Serve Man. Many believe the aliens mean them no harm and decide to travel to the home planet of the good aliens for an intergalactic vacation. Even one of the early skeptics believes the aliens have nothing but the best interests of Earth in mind until one of the cryptographers learns that To Serve Man is the title of a cookbook: How to cook and serve man as a meal! Consider Rod Serling’s introduction to the episode: “Respectfully submitted for your perusal—a Kanamit. Height: a little over nine feet. Weight: in the neighborhood of three hundred and fifty pounds. Origin: unknown. Motives? Therein hangs the tale, for in just a moment we’re going to ask you to shake hands, figuratively, with a Christopher Columbus from another galaxy and another time. This is the Twilight Zone.” Malevolent aliens who are giants!

These writers—fiction and non-fiction alike—believe the Bible is filled with real stories of alien visitation.The parting of the Red Sea was accomplished by aliens in a cylinder-shaped UFO hovering over the waters. “I personally find the suggestion that the parting of the Red Sea,” Downing writes, “was deliberately caused by intelligent beings in some sort of space vehicle to be the most persuasive explanation available at the present time.”[7] Something similar is depicted in the 1986 Star Trek movie Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home. Downing claims that the two men who appear to Abraham before going to Sodom (Gen. 18:1–2) were alien visitors. Clouds play a big role in the works of Bible UFO enthusiasts.[8] The Mount of Transfiguration (Matt. 17:1–13) and the ascension (Acts 1:9–11) were alien visitations. Jesus, an alien Himself, entered the mother ship after it was cloaked in clouds. Jesus actually stepped into a spaceship when He appeared to be taken up into heaven. Then there are the spaceships in Ezekiel 1. This was first proposed by Erich Von Däniken in his Chariots of the Gods and developed more fully by the initially skeptical Josef F. Blumrich, an engineer with NASA in The Spaceships of Ezekiel (1973).

What does this have to do with the Nephilim of Genesis 6? Von Däniken proposed that the “giants in the earth”—the “mighty men of old”—that the Bible mentions in Genesis 6:4, Numbers 13:33, and Deuteronomy 3:11 (by implication) were actually aliens masquerading as humans. Von Däniken asks: “Were they the wrongly programmed products of mutations? Were they direct descendants of gigantic cosmonauts from another world?”[9]


[1] John Allan, The Gospel According to Science Fiction: An Esoteric Religion of the Future? (Milford, MI: Quill Publications/Mott Media, 1976), 42. [2] Morris K. Jessup, UFO and the Bible (New York: Citadel Press, 1956), 9. Emphasis in the original.
[3] Gods or a god.
[4] Jessup, UFO and the Bible, 10. [5] Episode 33 (1967).
[6] R.L. Dione, God Drives a Flying Saucer (New York: Bantam, [1969] 1973).
[7] Barry H. Downing, The Bible and Flying Saucers: An Inquiry into Some Possibilities (Philadelphia, J. P. Lippincott, 1968), 9. See http://ufosbible.homestead.com/UFOpt2.html for an artist’s conception of Downing’s alien imges.
[8] http://www.ufoarea.com/main_strange_clouds.html
[9] Erich Von Daniken, Gods from Outer Space: Return to the Stars or Evidence of the Impossible? (New York: G. P. Putnam’s Sons, 1968), 45.