Thursday, April 29, 2010

236: We'll Do Everything You Say... Except That

Jeremiah 42-45
"Then they said to Jeremiah, 'May the LORD be a true and faithful witness against us if we do not act in accordance with everything the LORD your God sends you to tell us.' " ... "When Jeremiah finished telling the people all the words of the LORD their God—everything the LORD had sent him to tell them- Azariah son of Hoshaiah and Johanan son of Kareah and all the arrogant men said to Jeremiah, 'You are lying! The LORD our God has not sent you to say, 'You must not go to Egypt to settle there.' ' " - Jeremiah 42:5 & Jeremiah 43:1-2

Chapter 42 starts with Jeremiah leading the few who remain of Judah. They all say that they will follow him and do whatever he says (i.e. whatever Jeremiah "hears" from God). Ten days later, Jeremiah hears from God. God tells the remnant of Judah not to go to Egypt or they will all fall by the sword. Apparently this remnant of Judah gets no alternate suggestion of where they should settle. In the desert?

In the very next chapter, the once loyal Israelites turn against Jeremiah. They tell him that he's lying about God telling them not to settle in Egypt. What happened to following everything Jeremiah says? I guess that only applies when what Jeremiah says agrees with what they were already thinking. This whole fiasco ends with the officers of the old Israelite army leading the entirety of the remainder of Judah into Egypt. Jeremiah must be very unconvincing.

The rest of the chapter tells the story of God, once again, forcing Jeremiah to do weird stuff to make his point. Of course, to the outside observer this just looks like Jeremiah doing weird stuff (what I'm trying to say is that Jeremiah is probably a total nut job). God tells Jeremiah to find some large stones and bury them outside of Pharaoh's palace. He says that where these stones are buried is where Nebuchadnezzar will set up his tent. Man, the Israelites just can't get away from those damn Babylonians. Why didn't God just say "Babylon is going to take over Egypt"? Jeremiah really didn't need to act that one out.

In chapter 44 God continues his rant about those nasty Israelites who settled in Egypt. I'm not quite sure what God has against Egypt. Unless he's still holding a grudge about that whole Pharaoh thing (which was really God's fault if we're being honest). The remnant of Israel has also gone back to worshiping/offering sacrifices to other gods. God goes on to say how he's going to kill off the remnant of Israel so that their number is very few. I thought their numbers were already very few! That is the connotation of the word "remnant".

Chapter 25 is short and weird. God tells the scribe of Jeremiah that he is going to bring great disaster on all people. However, God says that he will spare Jeremiah's scribe. Why? What did the scribe do to receive this salvation? The bible never says.

*News*
I think I've shown a video from this guy before. The sheer mass of biblical contradiction this video shows amazes me.



You mean, the bible's not inerrant?

1 comment:

  1. "Apparently this remnant of Judah gets no alternate suggestion of where they should settle."

    They were told to stay in Judah.

    Once again, we see the conflict between God's omniscience and free will. God gives people choices, warns them of the consequences that they will suffer if they disobey, and then punishes them when they fail to do his bidding. But at the same time, he would know in advance that they aren't going to listen to him, so why bother? If he really wants them to act a certain way, he would know beforehand what would be necessary to convince them. Unless he really doesn't want them to obey him and he's just giving himself an excuse to inflict more pain on them. That would be in keeping with his character, as demonstrated in, e.g., Exodus.

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