If it’s alright with you, I’ll be submitting. When/ If you respond let me know, it makes it easier for me to keep up with. I going to reuse parts of an answer that someone asked me.
I understand the need for submission. This is likely longer than the character limit for questions in an ask box allows. Will let you know.
What version are you using? The most accurate ,in English, to the original text is ESV and ASV. Also I apologize when you get this it’s gonna take a while.
Honestly, I wasn’t referring to any specific version, just the overall story of Noah’s ark that I’ve grown to know through my Rabbi, the Jewish teachings I was brought up with as a child, and possibly some other stories. Haha yes, it like will take awhile, but no need to apologize.
As you read this, keep in mind, I am not a biblical scholar in the slightest. I can give you some suggestions for books, if you want, but I’m not a biblical scholar.
That’s quite alright. Neither am I.
I didn’t include the verses to save time, because I don’t have a lot, and It takes forever to go through my bible, and through my notes, and referring to my books, but if you want I’ll give any information about my sources, verses, etc. I just want to give this to you in a timely fashion.
That’s also alright, I understand.
As a general answer to most of this We have to ask ourselves What crime is so great that a good portion of a population of a city were targeted and subjected for destruction?
There is none. I honestly don’t understand why God needs to punish them when he could instead educate them to try to save these people.
Well God told Moses that the nations that the Hebrew were replacing were wicked. How “wicked”? The Bible tells us that they were burning their own sons and daughters in sacrifices to their gods. So we see that these people were not really innocent. For these reasons (and others), God ordered the destruction of the peoples whom the Israelites dispossessed.
The next question is probably surely there must have been other innocents in those cities who were destroyed with the wicked!? There actually is an example of a time when God was asked if He would destroy the innocent along with the wicked. Prior to destroying Sodom and Gomorrah, Abraham asked God if He would destroy the righteous along with the wicked. God replied that He would spare the entire city for 50 righteous people. Abraham kept reducing the possible number of righteous people, asking God if He would destroy the entire city along with those number of righteous people. God’s reply in each case was that He would not destroy the righteous along with the wicked. The lowest number Abraham asked about was ten righteous people, more than likely however the answer would likely be the same with as few as one righteous individual. God sent two angels to warn the four righteous people in Sodom to flee before He destroyed the city.
So in this example God saves only four out of fifty people, is that what you’re saying? Yet the rest of the innocent are killed.
It is quite interesting to me that these details are usually left out of atheistic sites, and other atheist that I talk to complaining about the “evil” perpetrated by God. In fact, God saved certain people from being killed in cities such as Jericho.
Well sure, we do not need to focus on the good that God has done. If a God exists, we expect him to be good. It is the many evil acts that quite disturb us.
Now addressing the Pharaoh, because this might come up, He’s not a paragon. He oversaw the continued oppression ,of 400 years, of slavery and he also ordered the deaths of all male baby Israelites in Egypt. So I personally wonder if God’s killing all the first born sons was a way to show the Pharaoh the error of his ways, but I have no evidence to support that, and I’ve tried to find it…really hard.
Moving on, later God warned the Pharaoh several times with lesser plagues to let his people go, and he did not listen. So God make it harder for him to increasingly be ignored. If he killed the Pharaoh, then the next Pharaoh, would have taken over, and done the same actions, and etc, The soldiers, and servants of the Pharaoh would have still been there, etc, etc. It’s like if the President is assassinated , There is a chain of command, and there is still police, and an army. I’m actually surprised God did not destroy Egypt altogether, but I think God has respect for other cultures, or maybe a plan for them because God very often sends people to Egypt, Rome, and other non Christians states for training, advice and sanctuary before and after these events
I find it somewhat disturbing that you are surprised that God did not destroy the land of Egypt. Surely if one believes that God is so good, it would be much more surprising to know that God did destroy a land.
I know the next question is probably going to be why God, hardened his heart. God was not making Pharaoh do evil, but allowing him to do more evil, often the hardening of heart is referred to denying god in the Bible, so he allows himself to be denied even more by Pharaoh’s actions and thoughts. (I’ll explain more of this if you want) so he can make him meet his own demise. or check out this book When Critics Ask (©1992 Victor Books), Geisler and Howe
The fact still remains that God prolonged suffering, which I find inexcusable.
Honestly, I don’t have many problems with the story of the Jews being slaves in Egypt and then let free, other than that the blood that was needed on the doors of only the Jews despite God supposedly being omniscient, except for its legitimacy. Meaning, I doubt this really happened. However if it did, I see nothing morally wrong with this specific story other than the hardening of Pharaoh’s heart.
Meanwhile, there is still the example of the story of Noah’s ark that I had originally brought up as an example of violence in the Bible that you did not address, but instead discussed an entirely different story to back your point. In the story, God killed many innocent people (more than just the 50-4 that he killed in your previous example), for surely, not everyone on the entire planet was committing whatever crime God thinks is punishable by death. So many in fact, that everyone except Noah and his wife were drowned. To me, this seems unnecessarily and exceedingly violent.
I was told by my Rabbi that these people had only committed minor sins, but that these sins became so commonplace that the people eventually failed to recognize them as sins. Thus God felt the need to destroy them all because they could not distinguish between good and evil. Again, I fail to see why God could not have simply educated them on the evil of their ways instead of punishing them all, let alone drowning them all. Also there is no Mosaic law at this point, so I don’t see how the people could have known any better.
I not only see many problems, that I now clarified on, with the story of Noah’s Ark from the Old Testament, but also the quote I had referenced from the New Testament about Jesus which you also have not yet addressed. The quote, in case you can’t find it again, was Matthew 10:32-39.
I also have a few more examples, if you care to address them, of violence in the Old/New Testament, such as God’s request for Abraham to sacrifice his son, God being rather cruel to Job, a rape victim being forced into marrying her rapist, the fact that Hell exists and an all-powerful or at least quite powerful and benevolent God doing nothing about this, and the permission to own slaves even with specific rules on how to mark them. Those are just a few off the top of my head.
Actually, there is quite the list of violent acts in the Bible. And, in case you make this point, one cannot simply add a separate list of the good God had done to justify the bad He had done. If God is aware of evil and chooses not to fix it, He himself is evil. If God is unaware of all these evil acts, he is impotent and not worthy of any praise.
If I may also add, violence is not the only problem I have with the Bible. The texts also include several incorrect facts (false claims about insects, the value of pi, and the age of the earth), advocate against knowledge (the story of adam and eve where God cautioned them against eating the fruit from the tree of knowledge), maintain the idea that women are inferior and should be treated as such (1 Timothy 2:12 and 1 Corinthians 14:34), are hateful towards any other opposing views (Matthew 10:32-33), create shameful guilt for thousands of people even today because they say non-procreational sex is a sin (Genesis 38:9) and that women must remain virgins until marriage (Hebrews 13:4 and Deuteronomy 22:13-21), and, worst of all, are not at all backed by any evidence!