Tuesday, October 27, 2009

52: Skewered

Numbers 23-25
Balaam has the Moabites build him altars and make sacrifices. He then speaks to God, who refuses to curse Israel. The Moabites, in their infinite wisdom, decide they weren't in the right location for God to curse the Israelites. Twice they relocate and build altars, and twice God says no. Balaam then tells the Moabites that they will be destroyed by the Israelis.

In Numbers 25 Israeli men start having sex with Moabite women. God, of course, goes with his first instinct when something goes wrong and tells Moses to kill everyone. One of these Israeli men actually brings one of the women home. Oh no! I think we know how this is going to end. Aaron's son leaves the assembly, gets a spear, and returns to skewer the Israelite man and the woman at the same time. Because of this God stops the killing and blesses Aaron's son. So God doesn't just stay silent on this one. He approves of skewering two people if they are from the wrong country.

Unfortunately this only stops the killing of the Israelis, the Moses is told to continue killing the Midianites.


  1. Are moabites and midianites the same thing? Because you use them interchangably...

  2. There was some confusion in this post (it's actually a confusing section). The Moabites are the first to sleep with the Israelites. This makes God send a plague to the Israelites. Then the Israeli man brings a Midianite woman home. Killing her (and her Israeli boyfriend) causes the plague to stop (that was originally caused by the Moabites). Then Israel is commanded to kill the Midianites. I think that's right this time.

    To answer your question, they are not the same (but they seem to worship the same gods).



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