Friday, May 21, 2010

God is angry with Israel - again

I am now through Jeremiah in the Bible.  Jeremiah is a prophet, hearing the words of God directly and sending them on to the people.  Like Isaiah he is heartily focused on the evil the nations of Judah and Israel have done in worshipping things that are not God and how brutally God is going to crush them for their iniquity.  I must say that some of the most incredible things I have found in the Bible are found here - particularly painting God as a penis, someone who will rape mankind, and God enforcing cannibalism.

God sends Jeremiah to get a loincloth and wear it.  Then he orders Jeremiah to bury the loincloth near the river and many days later he orders Jeremiah to go and recover it.  Jeremiah notes that now the loincloth is good for nothing, and God agrees that this is the lesson.

"For as the loincloth clings to one's loins, so I made the whole house of Israel and the whole house of Judah cling to me, says the Lord"  Jeremiah 13:11

The lesson, apparently, is that God is a penis, the two nations of Jews are a loincloth, and God will ruin those nations just as Jeremiah ruined the loincloth by burying it for many days.  The imagery is certainly eye catching, but it is hard to deny how utterly bizarre and inexplicable this choice of metaphors is.

The second incredible example in this section is:

"And if you say in your heart, "Why have these things come upon me?" it is for the greatness of your iniquity that your skirts are lifted up, and you are violated."  Jeremiah 13:22

Note here God isn't talking about women in particular, but referring to the rape of an entire society as God smashes it.  I certainly didn't expect 'God will rape your civilization' as an idea the Bible would support.

"And I will make them eat the flesh of their sons and the flesh of their daughters, and all shall eat the flesh of their neighbours in the siege, and in the distress with which their enemies and those who seek their life afflict them."  Jeremiah 19:9

Now God is controlling people's minds to force them to commit cannibalism when their city is besieged; when the enemies summoned by God surround the Jews and leave them with no hope.  Wow.

The theme of 'Worship God or he will destroy you' started in Genesis and continues on.  The first sections of the Old Testament sprinkle that around on top of stories and legends but the last few hundred pages seem to be filled with nothing else - it would seem that they ran out of new things to say and so filled a huge chunk of space with endless threats.

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