Saturday, November 28, 2009

84: More Rape & Judges: In Review

Judges 19-21
Pounding on the door, they shouted to the old man who owned the house, "Bring out the man who came to your house so we can have sex with him." - Judges 19:22

Ok, I'm going to furiously type this, I got started a little late today.

A man (a random Levite) takes a concubine. They have some family drama (she cheats on him) and they repeatedly spend the night at their father's house. Finally they leave (after a lot of boring verses), and go to Gibeah (a Benjamite city). This turns out to be a replay of Sodom. The men of Gibeah see the Levite and his concubine go into an old man's house. The men surround the old man's house and demand that he give them the Levite so they can have sex with him. The old man says that there is a perfectly good concubine to rape (he also offers his own daughter).

The men say no, so the old man throws the other man's concubine outside. The rapists change their mind and decide they are interested in the concubine. They rape her and abuse her throughout the night. The men inside go to sleep.

When they wake up in the morning they find her on the doorstep and tell her to get up. She's dead. Instead of burying his dead partner, the man chops her into 12 pieces and sends her to all of the tribes of Israel. He chops her up? Why would he do that?

The Israelites apparently don't appreciate dismembered pieces of a corpse being sent to them and go to war with the Benjamites. Many a paragraph is spent describing the armies of Israel that are sent against the Benjamites. I'll spare you the details.

God finally returns (we haven't seen him in awhile) and gives permission for the Israelites to destroy the Benjamites. I wonder how God decided between the corrupt Israelites and the corrupt Benjamites. The Israelites defeat the Benjamites, of course with God's assistance.

The Israelites, after beating the Benjamites, pledge not to give any Benjamites wives. I guess the Benjamites don't have any women. The next day they build an altar to God and one of the Israeli cities doesn't send a representative to worship. Israel gathers an army and kills everyone in the city except for the virgins and gives those virgins to the Benjamites for wives. Problem solved? Not quite. Not all of the Benjamites have wives.

The Israelites tell the Benjamites to hide in the vineyards while the women of Shiloh come to entertain them. The Benjamites then kidnap the women and keep them for wives. Great solution.

Judges: In Review
As I said in the beginning, the entire premise of Judges is that the Israelites are naughty, and God sends someone to save them. God fails to save them (from himself) to varying degrees throughout judges. But, of course, it's the people who fail, because God can't.

Why does God even need to send anyone to save Israel. Why can't he do it himself? I can hear the Christians shouting "he can't revoke free will". But what difference does it make if he unfairly gives an advantage to a "judge" or just comes down and does whatever he wants to do himself? Is there any difference for free will?

Want to make a quick $15,000? Just go hand write a bible. Ok, so that might not be quick.

Reportedly, over 31,000 different people contributed to the writing of this NIV bible. They then proceeded to sell it on Ebay. Of course.

Ok, enough said. Must publish.

(via The Christian Post)

1 comment:

  1. “God fails to save them (from Himself) ???”

    “I would encourage everyone to read along, if they are able, to make sure I'm not "reading it wrong" or something of that sort.”—Bible365, Day 1

    “By foolproof composition I mean that the Bible is difficult to read, easy to under read and over read and even misread, but virtually impossible to, so to speak, counter read. Here as elsewhere of course, ignorance, willfulness, preconception, tendentiousness—all amply manifested throughout history, in the religious and other approaches—may perform wonders of distortion.” -Meir Sternberg, The Poetics of Biblical Narrative, p. 50

    Judges even among liberal Biblical scholars (who believe that Deut – 2 Kings was written by one individual) carries forward the themes of the Deuteronomic Covenant. What God said would happen among his people does begin to transpire. He promised His people blessing as they wholeheartedly seek Him and remain faithful to the covenant. He promised them discipline as His people strayed from the covenant. By the end of the book of Judges His people are in a very sad state—spiritually and morally bankrupt. Everybody is doing that which is right in their own eyes. The progressive deterioration is clearly evident. Yet, God’s faithfulness to his promises from Deuteronomy clearly shines out. Furthermore, his compassionate going beyond the covenant and patiently raising up deliverer after deliverer to rescue his people is also evident (Even when His people turn over their deliverer to the “enemy” --Judges 15:12, What future parallel does this foreshadow?).

    Which leads to the next book Ruth ….



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