Who was Nimrod?

Nimrod had a monumental role in world developments after the Flood. However, his name is listed in the Bible only four times. Of those four, only three are direct references.

The first reference to this man is in Genesis 10:8-9: “And Cush begat Nimrod: he began to be a mighty one in the earth. He was a mighty hunter before the Lord: wherefore it is said, Even as Nimrod the mighty hunter before the Lord.” The King James Version of the Bible does not properly reflect the actual context of this scripture. It is vital to fully understand Nimrod’s nature in order to fully comprehend these verses.

The word “before” in verse 9 actually should be translated “in defiance of.” Even his name—Nimrod—denotes “one who rebels” or “let us rebel.” Nimrod was a hunter, “a mighty one in the earth,” a hero of the people. With his skills of hunting and war, he protected the people against wild animals, thus causing people to turn to him for protection instead of God.

The Jerusalem Targum (a Hebrew translation into the Aramaic language, which was used in Christ’s day), states, “He [Nimrod] was powerful in hunting and wickedness before the Lord, for he was a hunter of the sons of men, and he said unto them, ‘Depart from the judgment of the Lord, and adhere to the judgment of Nimrod!’ therefore it is said: ‘As Nimrod [is] the strong one, strong in hunting, and in wickedness before the Lord.’”

Though we do not endorse every statement, you can read more about Nimrod by referencing an article titled “Nimrod,” in A Dictionary of the Bible, by James Hastings. You can also read more concerning Nimrod in our booklet The True Origin of Christmas.

Nimrod is also listed in a genealogy found in I Chronicles 1:10. His name also appears in Micah 5:6.

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