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Bulls of Bashan

February 10, 2007

Why Bashan?Psalms 22:12 Many bulls have compassed me: strong bulls of Bashan have beset me round.
Psalms 22:13 They gaped upon me with their mouths, as a ravening and a roaring lion.

From the context of the chapter you may gather that David was talking about Jesus.

Psalms 22:16 For dogs have compassed me: the assembly of the wicked have inclosed me: they pierced my hands and my feet.
Psalms 22:17 I may tell all my bones: they look and stare upon me.
Psalms 22:18 They part my garments among them, and cast lots upon my vesture.

Bashan is an actual place east of the Jordan River near the Sea of Galilee. Now I don’t think a bunch of actual bulls imported from Bashan were surrounded around Jesus at the crucifixion. It makes more sense that these Bulls of Bashan relate to something spiritual.

Bashan as a place inhabited by the Rephaim or sometimes translated giants.

Deuteronomy 3:11 For only Og king of Bashan remained of the remnant of giants; behold, his bedstead was a bedstead of iron; is it not in Rabbath of the children of Ammon? nine cubits was the length thereof, and four cubits the breadth of it, after the cubit of a man.

That word giants is rephaim and is translated rephaim or giants in the Old Testament in other places in the King James Version. The last of the Rephaim, the King of Bashan had an iron bed almost 13 feet long and about 5 and half feet wide.

In Deuteronomy 3:13 “with all Bashan, which was called the land of giants.” Again that word giants is Rephaim. This was in the time of Joshua (Deuteronomy 3:21).

The fact that these Rephaim inhabited the land may have something to do with the evil association with the bulls of Bashan.

H7497
רפה רפא râphâ’ râphâh raw-faw’, raw-faw’
From H7495 in the sense of invigorating; a giant: – giant, Rapha, Rephaim (-s). See also H1051.

H7496
רפא râphâ’ raw-faw’
From H7495 in the sense of H7503; properly lax, that is, (figuratively) a ghost (as dead; in plural only): – dead, deceased.

If you do a word search for Rephaim you will find behind it a Hebrew word that Strong’s divides into different definition even though the Hebrew word is the same. If you do a search for that Hebrew word you won’t find every place where it appears. The breaking up of a single Hebrew word into different definitions may be inaccurate with the original meaning of the text.

Below I highlight where this word for Rephaim appears which Strong’s would associate with the H7496 definition but is the same word for Rephaim.

Isaiah 26:13 O LORD our God, other lords beside thee have had dominion over us: but by thee only will we make mention of thy name. 26:14 they are dead, they shall not live; they are deceased, they shall not rise: therefore hast thou visited and destroyed them, and made all their memory to perish.

Deceased = Rephaim

Job 26:5 Dead things are formed from under the waters, and the inhabitants thereof.

Dead = Rephaim

Psalms 88:10 Wilt thou shew wonders to the dead? shall the dead arise and praise thee? Selah.

The first use of the word dead is the Hebrew word H4191 muth which is used 790 times and is clearly used to describe death. Where as the word dead I highlighted is Rephaim or raw-faw’ H7496.

Proverbs 9:18 But he knoweth not that the dead are there; and that her guests are in the depths of hell.

Dead = Rephaim

So back to the original verse

Psalms 22:12 Many bulls have compassed me: strong bulls of Bashan have beset me round.

When Jesus Christ was on the cross the bulls of Bashan could very well be talking about the Rephaim Deuteronomy 3:13 states that Bashan is the Land of the Rephaim. There are likely many things that happened that day that people did not see and no one understands.

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44 Comments
  1. kathy permalink

    Very interesting and helpful. I appreciate your insight.

  2. Great post – very thought provoking.

  3. James permalink

    Yes, you are correct. These Rephaim go back to the Nephilim and we will see Niphilim again on the earth (Nephilim = transgenic entities). This is why Ezekiel 39.18 characterizes the future “princes of the earth” who will be slain at Armegeddon as “bulls . . . of Bashan.” In my opinion, the Antichrist will be a transgenic (i.e., a new type of nephilim).

    • What is a “transgenic” and from what source(s) are referring? Thanks

      • transgenic = Nephilim: human+angel hybrids and animal+Nephilim hybrids

        See KJV Genesis Chapter 6; Jude 6,7; 1 Peter 3:19,20; 2 Peter 2:4-5

    • Interesting comment about the Antichrist.. I too have been thinking along the line of cloning, hybrid, transgenic – Since Lucifer wants to mimic God in perverse ways, I think he will want to be the satanic “man+god” not merely a supernatural possession of a man.

      • Daniel permalink

        Rev.13:18 tells us about the number of the beast, it is the number of a man 666, so could the beast/man be a hybrid?

  4. Very interesting the Spirit is leading me to study this theemes. I believe there’s something to be learn in this for thir times… Blessings

  5. Ezra permalink

    Yes Nephilim in Genesis 6 who presumably reproduced with the daughters of man, having fallen from heaven for them. I had a reason for believing the Rephaim were the hybrid offspring but I forget now it’s been a few years since I looked at this subject.

  6. Large bulls of Bashan represent demonic forces, most likely

  7. what gods did these bulls of bashan worship?

    • A “bull” is often a term for a King or Leader. His edicts are often called “bulls” as well: hence the modern term “bulletin” or in resistance/defiance to a pronouncement people may say “BS” (bull-s_ _ _ _).

      The “bulls of bashan” where the giants of Bashan (angel+human hybids): When they died they became what we commonly call demons (since the “rephaim” can’t die [Dead Nephilim]).

      The “bulls of bashan” and other “giants” were often worshiped “as gods”, rather than do the worshiping.

  8. On Oct.31/10 , during intense prayer regarding a betrayal from family members, I heard the Holy Spirit say, “The Bulls of Bashan have surrounded me.” I am researching the meaning as applicable to me. From the info. I believe God is warning me of Satan’s onslaught (which is normal) and that He will …Arise, Oh Lord and let your enemies be scattered. And let those who hate you flee before you. Could the Bulls of Bashan be those who are driven by greed and covetousness to rob the poor and needy inorder to be like fat cows, or those who never have enough? Interesting Website.

  9. Thanks for posting. I have been tormented in my bed for over a week and couldn’t get a breakthrough. Last night I sat at our kitchen table and asked the Lord what it was so I could get rid of this thing. He gave me Psalm 22. I read about the bulls of Bashan and Holy Spirit said to bind them. I did that and decreed that no evil comes near my dwelling in Jesus’ name.

    It worked. I slept well, with no more torment, or itching, or poking. PTL!

  10. Thanks. I bound the “bulls of bashan” and decreed that no evil comes near my dwelling place. Went back to bed and slept very well with no more poking, prodding or itchiness. Praise The Lord!

    Bless you!

    Brenda Gale

  11. Russ R. permalink

    Thanks for the comments on the “Bulls of Bashan.” Charles Spurgeon
    used the term in his great poem Immanuel (below). Blessings in Christ,
    Russ R.

    “Immanuel”
    by Charles Spurgeon

    When once I mourned a load of sin;
    When conscience felt a wound within,
    When all my works were thrown away;
    When on my knees I knelt to pray,
    Then, blistful hour, remembered well,
    I learned Thy love, Immanuel.

    When storms of sorrow toss my soul;
    When waves of care around me roll;
    When comforts sink, when joys shall flee;
    When hopeless griefs shall gape for me,
    One word the tempest’s rage shall quell —
    That word, Thy name, Immanuel.

    When for the truth I suffer shame,
    When foes pour scandal on my name;
    When cruel taunts and jeers abound;
    When ‘Bulls of Bashan’ gird me round,
    Secure within Thy tower I’ll dwell —
    That tower, Thy grace, Immanuel.

    When hell enraged lifts up her roar,
    When Satan stops my path before;
    When fiends rejoice and wait my end,
    When legioned hosts their arrows send,
    Fear not my soul, but hurl at hell,
    Thy battle cry, Immanuel.

    When down the hill of life I go;
    When o’er my feet death’s waters flow;
    When in the deep’ning flood I sink;
    When friends stand weeping on the brink,
    I’ll mingle with my last farewell,
    Thy lovely name, Immanuel.

    When tears are banished from mine eye;
    When fairer words than these are nigh;
    When heaven shall fill my ravished sight;
    When I shall bathe in sweet delight,
    One joy all joys shall far excel,
    To see Thy face, Immanuel.

  12. They could be demonic spirits (dead giant’s spirits roaming earth until judgement, King Og; a giant, lived there in Bashan) that are tormenting Christ on the cross.

  13. I recently wrote a poem called “Bulls of Bashan” It’s posted on my blog, but here as well:

    Bulls of Bashan
    it is a room, filled with china,
    surrounded by ancient doors.

    it is treacherous, and without cause,
    but the bulls of Bashan have entered.

    it is a green pasture, filled with cotton
    surrounded by quiet shores.

    it is a dried mouth, and a sticky tongue
    but the bulls of Bashan have entered.

    it is majestic, filled with splendor
    surrounded by bitter wormwood.

    it is insults, it is shaking heads,
    where the bulls of Bashan have stood.

    but there is no down to death.
    there is no hold on hell.
    you do not remember the cruel years.
    you will drink up from the well.
    for your youthful fountain is blessed.
    and the bulls of Bashan retreat.
    and while lying in green pastures,
    the future is smelling sweet.

  14. Fbrett permalink

    1) the 10th legion was in isreal when Jesus was cruxified.
    2) they had a bull on their shield. There were only two legions that because of bravery that were allowed to have a symbol other than an eagle on their shield.
    Ref ceasars legion by collins
    Very likely…
    3) Jesus looking down from the cross would have seen ‘strong bulls’ surrounding him.
    Perhaps…
    4) if they came to judea from syria they would have passed thru badhan.

    Seems to me, anyone at the cruxifiction would have known exactly what the pslam said.
    4) if

  15. john mark permalink

    In genesis 6 it talk of the sons God seeing the daughters of men and desiring them. The most common interpretation of the sons of God in this verse is fallen angels. The children of the sons of God and the women were gaints men of renown. If the giants were the sons of fallen angels they would be very wicked. It is very possible the spirits of the those deceased gaints we’re there at the cross taunting Jesus.

    • If the sons of God were fallen angels, and angels are neuter gender and can not reproduce, how could they have reproduced with earthly women?

      • There are numerous speculations that range from sexual reproduction to genetic manipulation.

        My observation is that Angels always appear in the Bible as masculine (not neuter gender), and that God said mankind is made just a little lower than the angels (“kind” [generally referring to the flesh or nature of the creature]).

  16. Mark Job permalink

    I think there was so much more going on at the time of the crucifixion, and only Jesus could see into the spiritual realm around him. I’m sure many of those who were there observing must have been quite baffled by Him quoting the scriptures – especially psalm 22. It’s hard to imagine demonic spirits taunting the Living God ! Let’s just sit back and consider this for a moment. There’s so much going on in our world for which we do not perceive. Imagine if we could see what Jesus sees ? Wow ! Could we even handle that ?

  17. steve permalink

    Interesting; would this have happened: Before Jesus called out; “My God, My God, why have you forsaken me? Or after he called this out?

    1. Before saying this; “My God, My God, why have you forsaken me” Jesus would have still been free from the sins of the world

    2. But when He (Jesus) is saying; “My God, My God, why have you forsaken me” would have been when the sins of the world were laided on him. And I believe this is when the spiritual attack happened; Psalm 22:12 what you have mentioned above?

    3. This is the only time He called or referred to the “Father” as “My God” before this He always referred to (God) as the “Father”

    4. At that moment He would have fallen into darkess as did Adam?

    5. Psalm 22:12

    Grace and peace to u all

    • when all these was happening was when Jesus cried out.
      because when darkness fell on the land, Jesus knew God had turned away from him, then the demon appeared and laughed at him. That is when Jesus cried out.

      Link Psalms 22 and Gospel Crucifixion together

  18. good post!
    in fact I like how you made a post about this.

    because I never came across this, it was recent I was searching for what Bulls of Bashan means when I read Psalm 22.

    First of all, a guy made a testimony of him going to heaven, he saw a glimpse life of Jesus and said demons surrounded him while on the cross. I used to think about this that “what if demons were around Jesus when he was on the cross?”. Because it was obvious, when there was darkness in the land, that was when the demons rose up without fear, as they associate with darkness.
    And the guy said it, and I sort of knew it. This is something people do not talk about or perceive.

    Now reading Psalm 22 and I came across this, and it proved what that man’s testimony was saying was true. Demons did surround Jesus while on the cross.

    In fact you are talking about Rephaim which I’ve never seen before in the bible until now. All i knew was Nephilim which were the result of Fallen angels sleeping with women and women gave birth to Nephilim/Giants.
    In fact, one thing I was thinking off that is so baffling!
    Father cleansed the world completely with the flood during Noah’s time. Yet the giants survived, how? David fought with Goliath, in fact during David’s war regime, him and his strong warriors fought other giants including Goalith’s brother.
    King Og was probably the last of the Bashan clan, because it wouldn’t make sense if he was the last of all giants.

    Jesus said dogs surround me, which is referring to the Romans.
    The demons are the Roaring lions, because reading many books of Psalms mentions enemies like lions, and that would refer to the demon.

    I don’t believe the bulls are the giants, they are probably fallen angels, who spent with women after the Noah’s flooding and gave birth to other giant clans.

    • My theory is that Noah’s Daughter-in-laws where tainted by the giant’s genealogy (since ALL flesh was corrupted, except Noah [and probably Noah's wife, who was a daughter of Enoch]).

      Normal Genetics of Shem, Ham, and Japheth could then produce the 4 following possible offspring:

      Nephilim Female Chromosome (Xx) + Normal Male Chromosome (xy)

      Xx = Nephilim Female
      Xy = Nephilim Male
      xx = Normal Female
      xy = Normal Male

      In fact, my thinking is that Canaan was born on the Ark and was “not quite right” in his appearance due to genetic problems. Which may be one reason why Noah later cursed Canaan for his father’s sin.

      We can see many Nephilim in Hams lineage and some in Japheth’s lineage.

  19. Bulls of Bashan? ok picture this, you are being executed and the dudes in the front seat, so to speak are passing the dutchie vony left hand side, eyes red like a bull, aroma is messing with your pain Vs short life span thinking so you let out a cry ” dudes common man this is BULL shit!” B……o…….B Bob man its code for stoners. Bob quietly responds, while each points to one another referring blame ” sorry man no disrespect ” snubbing refer out with thumb and pointy finger.

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  22. Bob permalink

    Michael says that transgenic = Nephilim: human+angel hybrids and animal+Nephilim hybrids and uses these scriptures to support the assertion: See KJV Genesis Chapter 6; Jude 6,7; 1 Peter 3:19,20; 2 Peter 2:4-5.

    Chapter 6 of Genesis does not make clear that angels actually mated with humans. The term “sons of God” can also be applied to “godly men”. And that godly men decided it was OK to marry ungodly women (daughters of men).

    Jude verse 6 certainly refers to angels who left their heavenly domain but it does not specify that they left it to “father” children with humans.

    1 Peter 3:19-20 points out that Jesus witnessed to the spirits in prison (those who perished in the flood perhaps?–verse 20) I don’t see the connection to hybrids here.

    2 Peter 2:4-5 Peter talks about God not sparing the angels who sinned but again, there is no clarity on what that sin was in particular. So the assumption that Nephilim were offspring of angels and earthly women is loosely supported by one line of scripture (Genesis 6:2) and what “sons of God” actually means in that verse..

    • Mark Job permalink

      Wrong ! The Hebrew word used for Sons of God is “B’ne ha Elohim,” which refers to Angels and NOT to men. Therefore, the “Sons of God,” can NOT also be applied to men.

      • Bob permalink

        Mark I understand completely that this one verse can be taken as referring to angels. At the same time the Hebrew word “b’ne” means “a son, as the builder of a family name-a literal or figurative relationship including grandson, subject, nation, quality or condition”. Some have ascribed the term “sons of God” to refer to angels as well. If taken in this context wouldn;t this infer then that God made angels to be his sons, and to carry on the family name? Of course they couldn’t do that because Jesus Himself said that marriage will not exist in heaven and those who are saved will be “like the angels” inferring that angels in Heaven do not procreate. So this is up for debate in my opinion. Over the centuries there have been three basic views on who the sons of God are (1) angels (the oldest held belief) (2) royalty (also very old) (3) pious men from the line of Seth.

        I’m not trying to be argumentative, just fostering debate.

        • Mark Job permalink

          Hi Bob:
          I don’t see “any” ambeguity in the Hebrew language for this verse. Clearly, the Hebrew here is B’ne ha Elohim,” thus it can only mean angels of God, or that which is a direct creation of God, such as Adam, who was created by God’s own command. The Hebrew language does not ascribe the term Sons here, so I don’t know where you are getting that from, since it goes directly against the original Hebrew the Book of Genesis was written in. (??)

  23. Bob permalink

    Mark, I tried to leave an additional note the other day but evidently it didn;t take. My point in that misplaced post was that after spending much more time studying this topic than I have in the past, the most likely representation of who the sons of God are is that they are angels. (as you argue) I know that it is Chuck Missler’s assertion that the flood occured, not just because mankind was over the edge in sinfullness, but that Noah’s bloodline had not been tainted by the Nephilim. I’m not on board with Missler’s UFO link to the return of the Nephilim but I agree in theory that it’s possible that the Nephilim will play a part in the future. James’ assertion, in his post above, that the antichrist will be a transgenic is fun to discuss but not necessarily based on anything that I have found scripturally. And in the end, none of it has any effect on my or your salvation.

    • Mark Job permalink

      Hi Bob:
      OK. Understood :) The Big Lie will be that space friends have returned to save our world and restore mankind, but they won’t be aliens – No, they will be from another demension, and they will be demonic spirit beings masquarading as space friends ! The clay that won’t mix in the book of Daniel is an actual reference to the Return of the Nephilim. Remember “The Miory Clay,” reference in the book of Daniel ? Guess what ?

  24. Brad permalink

    The psalm is a prophetic first person description from Jesus dying on the cross. The equation in this website, of the bulls of Bashan with death and demons, also fits with circumstances of Jesus death. Jesus, through David, described what he saw as he was dying (though Jesus would not even be born in the flesh for hundreds of years). The psalm then describes the great congregation and how Jesus will lead it. He will praise God and speak about God – His Father.

  25. Could the bulls also represent the Pharisees who wanted to impale Jesus and were stubborn like Og:

    If the bull gores a male or female slave, the owner must pay thirty shekels of silver to the master of the slave, and the bull must be stoned. Exodus 21:32

    “What are you willing to give me if I hand him over to you?” So they counted out for him thirty silver coins. Matthew 26:15

    Many bulls surround me; strong bulls of Bashan encircle me … Dogs have surrounded me; a band of evil men has encircled me, they have pierced my hands and my feet.
    Psalms 22:12,16

    My thought:

    Bulls = Pharisees
    Lions = Satan and his demons
    Dogs = Gentile soldiers

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  28. brenda tate permalink

    JESUS DID GO TO HELL AND FACE SATAN AND DEMONS, HE COULD NOT TAKE THIEF TO HEAVEN YET, BC PARADISE WAS WHERE JESUS HAD TO LEAVE HIM. THEN JESUS WENT ON TO HADES BC HE HAD NOT RISEN YET. PEOPLE ARE REALLY LETTING SATAN MESS W THEIR HEADS. JESUS HAD TO PASS THROU PARADISE TO DROP THIEF OFF AND THEN FINISH W SATAN. Easy to understand. Bulls of bashan are in hell where all giants went. Stop trying to make it a lie.THINK ON THESE THINGS. Man lies JESUS DOES NOT, THE TRUTH REALLY HURTS ALL LIARS. THANK U BRENDA TATE. AMEN – SO BE IT

    • brenda tate permalink

      TO MANY PEOPLE THAT DON’T BELIEVE IN GO ANYWAY ARE SAYING JESUS NEVER WENT TO HADES, HELL. JESUS DOES NOT LIE. LET THEM DIE FOR 5 MINS THEN SEE WHERE THEY GO. THANK U. BT

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