The “Serpent Seed” Heresy

Study No. 190

It has recently come to the attention of the authors that there is a belief generally called “the serpent seed” doctrine which is being promulgated by various groups around the country, and which has even taken root among individuals who were assumed to be staunch, well-grounded members of God’s Church. Perhaps this doctrine is attractive to some since it offers its adherents a soothing basis for justifying attitudes of racial hatred. Whatever the reason for people adopting this doctrine, it is a dangerous heresy about which Christians need to be forewarned.

Briefly stated, the “serpent seed” doctrine revolves around an interpretation of Genesis 3:15 which states that there are races of mankind on earth which are directly descended from Satan himself. This doctrine maintains that Satan (the “serpent”) cohabited with mother Eve and engendered a race of men, which are not descended from the direct union of Adam and Eve. It also maintains that this “serpent seed” race is yet present on the earth, and the Blacks and/or the Jews are generally alleged to be the products of this Satanic union with Eve. There are variations on this belief, at least one of which is that the serpent seed race now on earth descended from men of a pre-Adamic race; that they came from the “Satanic” world which preceded the Adamic age, and are not descended from Adam at all. Another is that Cain was the son of Satan and Eve, not the son of Adam and Eve (this variation is utterly ridiculous since Genesis 4:1 states “Adam knew his wife; and she conceived, and bare Cain”).

If these doctrines were true, it would justify racial hatred toward the Blacks, Jews or any other race which one wished to ascribe to Satan’s origination. However, these ideas are not true, and are easily proven false by Biblical scriptures.

Let us first examine who is glorified by the adherents of the “serpent seed” doctrine. Even though the believers of this doctrine may not realize it, they are actually exalting Satan to God-rank by attributing to him the power of a creator or lifegiver. The Bible states clearly and emphatically that Jesus Christ made all things. John 1:3 states: “All things were made by Him; and without Him was not anything made that was made.” Hebrews 1:10-11 also reserves to God alone the role of creator and lifegiver. Satan himself, personified as the King of Tyre, is referred to in Ezekiel 28:12-16 as an “anointed cherub that covereth” (apparently he had wings) who was “in Eden the garden of God.” Verses 13 and 16 refer to Satan as having been created by God at a finite point in the ancient past. Satan is one of many millions of angels which were created by God. Christ tells us in Matthew 22:30 that the angels in heaven “neither marry nor are given in marriage.” Angels were created out of spirit essence, and do not have fleshly bodies. As such they do not reproduce themselves, and have no physical sperm in their bodies with which to engender a child via a human woman. The truth is that the serpent seed doctrine gives Satan exactly what he wants. Satan “blew his stack” when he found out God was going to make man in the image of God. Ever since, Satan has been angry and has promulgated a variety of “doctrines of demons” which reverse the truth of God. The serpent seed doctrine is perhaps the most vile of his deceptive doctrines since it relegates various races of men to the status of animals rather than recognizes all men as being made in the image of God.

Also, since there is an immutable principle given in Genesis 1 that all forms of life reproduce “after their kind,” any seed of Satan would bear Satan’s hereditary traits. Since Satan is referred to as “a serpent,” a “dragon,” and a “covering cherub,” any progeny of his would bear reptilian features. When was the last time you saw a Black or Jew (the groups usually alleged to be “serpent seed”) with scales or wings? See how absurd the serpent seed idea is when it is examined critically?

The Bible also states in I Corinthians 15:45, “The first man Adam was made a living soul.” If we accept God’s word as our source of truth, we can easily see that Adam is called “the first man.” That excludes the possibility of serpent seed men existing prior to Adam. Since Genesis 3:20 also states Eve “was the mother of all living,” there is no room in the Biblical accounts for some men to have been survivors of the pre-Adamic era either, as any such beings would not have come via Eve’s lineage. Genesis 1:26-27 clearly states that God decided to make man “in His own image” and this applies to both males and females. In discussing the tongue, James 3:9 states: “therewith we bless God, even the Father; and therewith we curse men, which are made after the similitude of God.” The Bible is most consistent in including all men as being made in God’s image.

Those who teach or believe the serpent seed doctrine ought to take sober warning from God’s word in Mark 3:28-29. This passage states that all blasphemies will be forgiven except blasphemy against the Holy Spirit. To declare that the work of God’s Holy Spirit is the work of Satan is perilously close to (if it is not indeed) blasphemy against the Holy Spirit. Since Genesis 1:26-27, I Corinthians 15:45, and James 3:9 all attribute all men to be created by God in God’s image, to teach or believe that some men are created or engendered by Satan is blasphemous, heretical and tantamount to calling God a liar. Let all Christians be warned against this heresy which actually glorifies Satan to a kind of co-creator with God powers to give life and recreate in his own image. Ezekiel 28 states Satan is a created being, and as such, he can do nothing which God did not create within him to do. Since Matthew 22:30 shows angelic beings are not made to live in any kind of marital union, there is no basis for any belief that Satan or any other angel can mate with a human woman and produce a child.

There is additional strong evidence why no “serpent seed” doctrine need be taken seriously in today’s era. Let us assume, merely for the sake of discussion, that the serpent seed teachers were able to overcome all the Biblical evidence so far listed against them, and some serpent seed race of men were present on earth after Adam and Eve and up to the time of the flood. Since the Bible unquestionably teaches the reality of a worldwide flood during the days of Noah, any such theoretical serpent seed people simply died in the flood, and have no descendants on earth today. While this is simple when you take God at His word, the serpent seeders generally try to maintain the flood was only regional in nature; therefore, permitting serpent seed people to live into the modern era. Again, let us examine God’s word to see the clear teachings of the Bible on this subject.

Genesis 6:7 states: “I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast, and the creeping thing, and the fowls of the air; for it repenteth me that I have made them.” It is pretty final for God to state He will destroy man and beast from the face of the earth, but the evidence gets even stronger so no serpent seed teacher can gainsay it.

Use the brain which God has given you. If the flood was merely a regional phenomenon, there would have been no need for Noah to build a huge Ark, nor would there have been a need to place the animals in a huge vessel to preserve them. God could simply have told Noah to relocate to a different part of the earth, and animal life on earth would have faced no threat of extinction.

The Bible states in Genesis 7:19 that: “the waters prevailed exceedingly upon the earth; and all the high hills, that were under the whole heaven, were covered.” Verse 20 adds: “the mountains were covered.” Verses 21-23 are so explicit on this subject that they will be quoted in their entirety. This passage reads as follows.

“And all flesh died that moved upon the face of the earth, both of fowl, and of cattle, and of beast, and of every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth, and every man: All in whose nostrils was the breath of life, of all that was in the dry land, died. And every living substance was destroyed which was upon the face of the ground, both man, and cattle, and the creeping things, and the fowl of the heaven; and they were destroyed from the earth: and Noah only remained alive, and they that were with him in the ark.”

Could anything be clearer? There is absolutely no Biblical basis for a regional flood. We can only assume that those who still maintain the serpent seed doctrine, in spite of massive Biblical evidence to the contrary, are determined to call God a liar and refuse to believe his word. This kind of attitude should not surprise us since God foretold in II Timothy 4:3 that:

“the time will come when they will not accept sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; and they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables (or fiction).”

The desire to hate another race is the “lust” which causes some to depart from sound Biblical doctrine, and listen to the serpent seed fiction. Those who follow the serpent seed fiction are taking a giant step away from God, make no mistake about it.

What then does Genesis 3:15 mean when it refers to “thy seed and her seed” when talking to the serpent. Since the Bible cannot contradict itself, the answer is easily seen in John 8:31-59 where Jesus had a discourse with “Jews which believed on Him.” These Jews basically could not see their need for a saviour since they were “Abraham’s seed.” Jesus even acknowledges in verse 37: “I know that you are Abraham’s seed,” and repeats his conviction that these Jews were Abraham’s seed in verse 56. Yet Jesus also tells these Jews in verse 44 that: “ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do.” Serpent seed teachers sometimes seize on verse 44 to try to show that Jews are a “serpent seed race” because Christ said: “you are of your father the devil.” They lift this verse woefully out of context as verses 37 and 56 show Christ acknowledged these Jews were from the physical lineage of Abraham (obviously, no serpent seed lineage here).

The apparent contradiction is resolved as follows. Jesus, when referring to the physical lineage of these people, acknowledges that their physical parentage is of Abraham. When speaking of their deeds and attitudes (lusts, murders, and lies as mentioned in verse 44), Jesus refers to them as being of “your father the devil.” Clearly, Jesus was referring to their spiritual condition (their attitudes, their unconverted hearts, etc.) when referring to them as being of Satan, and their physical condition when referring to them as Abraham’s progeny. The point which Jesus Christ was trying to make was that simply being a physical descendent of Abraham is not enough to qualify a person for salvation. One must also become converted and have a life characterized by the works of obedience and faith which Abraham’s life manifested. By this above illustration, all persons on earth who sin are acting like “their father the devil.” Genesis 3:15 merely foretells that there will be a conflict between the converted and the unconverted, not one between men fathered by God and men fathered by Satan!

Who then is the physical seed of the serpent? Genesis 3:14 tells us. The serpent was “cursed above all cattle, and above every beast (creature or animal) of the field” and was told upon thy belly thou shalt go, and dust shalt thou eat all the days of thy life.” The serpent’s seed would then have to bear the hereditary traits of the serpent. Are there any animals today known as serpents who slither on their bellies in the dust all their lives? Yes, we call them snakes, and each time you meet a garter snake in your lawn or see pythons, boas and rattlers at zoos, you have met the serpent seed of Genesis 3:15.

There is another point to consider when evaluating the whole subject of racial prejudice and the serpent seed doctrine which is generally overlooked. The Bible teaches in I Corinthians 6:3 that Christians shall eventually judge even angels when we inherit the salvation God has prepared for us. The Book of Revelation shows to us that while man is made in God’s image, many angelic creatures are not made in God’s image. Revelation 4:6-8 tells us of heavenly beings which are “full of eyes before and behind,” and whose appearances are “like a lion, and a calf, and like a flying eagle.” Indeed, it is quite possible there are angels (like Satan) who look serpentine as the animals’ have been patterned after the angels even as man is patterned after God. Verse 7 speaks of a heavenly creature who “had a face as a man,” but verse 8 mentions this being had “six wings” (as did the other heavenly beings which John stated had the appearances of animals). Obviously, Christians must be freed of every tendency toward racial prejudice in order to ever have fellowship and even rule over creatures with likenesses such as these. If we humans were now granted full awareness of the invisible creatures of the spiritual kingdom, many people would die of heart failure thinking they were in some kind of science fiction world.

The Bible does teach the principle of guardian angels (see Matthew 18:10), but it does not promise us these angels are in the image of God like we are. How do guardian angels (and God the Father and Jesus Christ) feel when they see Christians hating their fellow human beings which vary from themselves only in skin pigmentation, and a few minor physical characteristics? How can such people ever be placed in a position to judge angels with much different appearances if they cannot tolerate fellow human beings with only insignificant differences in appearance? If humans with racial bigotry problems were placed in a situation like the Apostle John where they were forced to see and talk with heavenly beings who had eyes in all directions, faces like animals and multiple wings, they would likely come out of such a vision and embrace the first person they saw of a different race and say: “Boy am I glad to see you, you’re like me!”

The real purpose of the Satan-inspired serpent seed doctrine is to deceive men and fill potential sons of God with racial hatred in order to disqualify them from membership in the coming Kingdom of God where they will have regular fellowship with many forms of beings. The serpent seed idea also worships Satan as it exalts him to a co-creator status with God (Isaiah 14:14 states one of Satan’s sins was wanting to “be like the most High”).

If someone ever begins to promulgate the serpent seed doctrine to you, don’t listen to their Satanic lie. Remind them that Genesis 1:27 says: “God created man in His own image, in the image of God created He him: male and female created He them”! Don’t let anyone ever tell you otherwise!

— written by Robert Hoops and Steven Collins. Copyright 1986 by Steven M. Collins and Robert W. Hoops. Reprinted by permission.