‘Protagonists’ in the Bible – David

 

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David is said to be the ancestor of Jesus Christ himself, which is kind of difficult considering that Jesus is God and God existed forever.

God get’s pissed because the king of Israel, Saul, refuses to wipe out the Amalekites, which the loving and moral God commanded him to do, and instead of forgiving him like he’s supposed to, he sets about replacing him.

God chose somebody to replace Saul, and sent Samuel, one of his minions, to go and anoint him.

Now instead of just smiting Saul and getting it over with, God decides to do some of his classic manipulation, and torments Saul with an ‘evil spirit’ that he must’ve borrowed from Satan, and it only went away when David played the lyre.

Then comes the classic David and Goliath moment, where David somehow manages to kill a giant with a little sling. To thank him, Saul plots to kill David, because he’s getting worried. After all, God did promise to replace him, and this new guy seemed to be quite popular.

God could have just prevented this from happening, but decides to watch and leave it up to chance. Luckily, David is warned by one of Saul’s sons, and when the king tries to stab him, he flees.

Saul sends men to David’s house, and again somebody has to pick up the slack for God and warn David again! Once more David escapes, and flees to another city.

God’s still not done having his fun, so makes Saul walk around naked, prophesying. It must have looked like the king was having a mental breakdown.

David moves from city to city, as Saul tries to hunt him down. David and his men hide in a cave in the desert, and when Saul and his three thousand men show up they plan to ambush the king when he goes into the cave to pee. Real classy.

But David instead decides to spare him, just cutting up his robe for good measure. Saul returns the favor – the sparing part, that is, and all is well again.

David then spends many, many chapters going from place to place, wiping out the odd army here and there. God really is taking his time replacing Saul.

David completes God’s orders and wipes out the Amalekites, and Saul commits suicide.

David is anointed king – finally – and he goes to war with the houses of Saul. David wins, of course, and goes on to capture Jerusalem and defeat the Philistines, all very quickly.

God the decides to do some complaining, and bugs David to build him an actual altar for once, because so far nobody had gotten around to it.

Several more peoples and tribes are wiped out, but David, not learning from Saul’s example, sins against God. He seduces one of his commander’s wives, and kills her husband. This pisses God off, and people begin plotting against him, forcing him to flee from his kingdom.

one of David’s sons, Absalom, leads the charge against him, and in a comical fashion gets stuck in a tree during the battle of the wood of Ephriam. Absalom is killed and David is undisputed king once more, at least until another rebellion arrives.

David’s oldest son declares himself king when David is old and on his deathbed, but David tells him to piss off and chooses somebody else instead. The subsequent revolt led by his son is destroyed, and David dies.

What have we learnt about David? He’s a real leader, who will do exactly as he’s told! God made sure he had a real puppet who would carry out his orders of mass murder. David is also guilty of adultery, but God didn’t really seem to care about it that much in the long run.

Image courtesy of Salvatore Vuono at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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The New Bible – Exodus 14

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The Israelites are off trying to make it to the Holy Land, but God’s not ready to let them leave yet – he’s just got a little more messing about with the Egyptians to do.

  1. God told Moses to make camp near the sea, to trick the Pharaoh into thinking that they were lost.

2. “I will harden the Pharaoh’s heart again, and he will come after you, probably as revenge for the whole plaguing and killing thousands of people thing that we did,” God explained, “But this will be a great excuse to show off my powers again.”

3. When the Israelites set up camp, word reached the Pharaoh, and, totally not just doing what God made him, the Pharaoh ordered his army to get ready for battle. Finally, this book is getting interesting!

4. Apparently, the Pharaoh hated the Egyptians SO much, that he sent his entire army after them!

5. The Israelites saw the army, and complained to Moses, clearly not aware that there was an all-powerful God stalking them. “Were all the cemeteries full? Is that why you and God led us out here to die?” They asked Moses.

6. “Shut up, you ungrateful bastards. Stand and face them, and watch as God leads us to victory!” Moses exclaimed. Nothing happened.

7. “Um, actually Moses,” God said, “You’re supposed to turn around and run away. Off you go. Hurry now.”

8. Moses and the Israelites ran away, towards the sea, with the Pharaoh’s men chasing them.

9. God must have run out of mana or something, because he didn’t part the sea immediately. He just made some fancy smokescreen between the two armies, and they set up camp for the night.

10. “Um, Pharaoh, there’s a big cloud in our way” a soldier complained.

11. “Can’t you just walk through it?” The Pharaoh asked, raising an eyebrow.

12. “But, but, it’s a cloud” The soldier replied.

13. So the Egyptian army waited all night, and God helped Moses and the Israelites cross the sea, holding the water back for them.

14. When the Israelites were all safely across it was morning, and the Egyptians had seen what had happened. They charged off, not even thinking about the fact that the being who was holding the water back was a psychopathic mass-murderer.

15. But God had personally tampered with the Egyptians’ chariots, and they were too slow. “Oops” God said, letting the sea flow back and cover the pass.

16. Every single Egyptian was killed, and all so God could show off how powerful he was. The Israelites repaid God for his act of mass-murder by singing him a song, but that’s for the next chapter!

The New Bible homepage can be found here.

Image courtesy of vectorolie at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

‘Protagonists’ in the Bible – Joshua

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After Moses died, Joshua was tasked with leading the Israelites into the Holy Land, and we learn that either God is really bad at picking people to help, or he just likes following maniacs.

God spoke to Joshua, and told him to lead the Israelites to the Holy Land, which was already inhabited by other people, but God won’t let that simple fact get in the way of his promise, so he orders the Israelites to kill everybody! Just like any moral, benevolent being is supposed to do!

Joshua sent out some spies, and led his people across Jordan, where God recycled one of his magic tricks by parting the water of the Jordan so that everybody could cross.

While God could have been doing so many other, more useful things, he decided that his time was best spent telling Joshua how to divide people up into groups to do different tasks. And of course, he didn’t let anybody forget about the circumcision deal he made with Abraham.

After that whole ordeal was over, God told Joshua to go on a marching parade around the city of Jericho. Joshua led his men around the city seven times – God’s favorite, magical number – and the walls of the city fell down. Those must’ve been some really shoddy walls.

As the moral, chosen people, the Israelites proceeded to murder everyone and burn the city to the ground. Get used to this – it’s a reoccurring trait of the Israelites.

Now, despite the fact that God was helping them, and if the Bible is true, that should have been blatantly obvious, the Israelites still broke one of God’s many covenants, so he sent 3000 of them to be killed by the Amorites.

Joshua stoned the guy who had broken God’s covenant, and all was well again. God helped the Israelites destroy another city, resulting in another mass-murder.

Some of the tribes wised up to this, so the Gibeonites pretended to have come from a distant land, and made a treaty with the Israelites. When Joshua found out about their trick, and that they were living close by, he was angry. But Joshua couldn’t kill them, because apparently God had chosen that day to suddenly be moral, and, while it was okay to kill and steal, breaking promises was just too evil.

So instead Joshua sentenced the Gibeonites to be slaves for the rest of their lives.

The Gibeonites were attacked by the Amorites, and Joshua went up to save them. Whilst this happened, God started by throwing rocks at them, and then proceeded to make the earth stop spinning. How this did not wipe out everything on the planet, nobody knows.

After Joshua brutally murdered the five Amorite kings, he led his army and killed everybody in several cities across the south.

The people of the land were getting tired of this, so they got together and formed an army that was ‘more numerous than the grains of sand on the seashore. Well, the total amount of sand on earth is estimated to be about 7.5*10^18, so about seven quintillion, five hundred quadrillion, or 7,500,000,000,000,000,000. Even if you subtract the sand in the deserts, and even the sand on the bottom of the ocean, and JUST use the sand on the shores, that’s still way more than possible.

Of course, despite all this, Joshua won, and killed everyone.

A few more people were casually wiped out, and then everyone took a break from the fighting.

Land was divided up between everyone over many, many chapters, and that’s about it for the book of Joshua. Joshua the person dies, and he is buried next to Joseph.

What have we learnt about Joshua? He’s a tyrant who likes committing mass murder. The Bible has such moral protagonists!

Image courtesy of Salvatore Vuono at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

The New Bible – Exodus 13

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The Israelites had just left Egypt, but their journey was only just beginning.

  1. “Commemorate this day, Israelites, because today is the day that God brought you out of Egypt. God is finally going to keep his promise to Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, and Joseph… too bad they’re all dead.” Moses said.

2. “Anyway,” Moses continued, “If you didn’t hear my speech, I told you all that God hates yeast for some reason, and none of you must eat anything that contains it.

3. You must give the Lord every firstborn animal of yours, because God likes the smell of burning flesh.”

4. “Isn’t this God of ours a little weird?” One of Moses’ people asked, “Of course not! Oh, yea, God also says you must redeem a lamb for every donkey, otherwise you must break it’s neck. Not weird in the slightest” Moses replied.

5. God didn’t tell the Israelites to follow the road, because he thought if they encountered enemies they would turn around and run back to Egypt, despite how horrible it apparently was. So God led the Israelites towards the Red Sea.

6. Moses remembered the Israelites oath to Joseph, and he was better at keeping promises than God, so he carried Joseph’s bones with him, to be taken to the Holy Land.

7. Instead of teleporting the Israelites to the Holy Land, God made them walk, because it would make a more interesting story.

8. God was with Moses, and he led his people towards the sea. Luckily the Israelites had an active volcano to head towards, because nobody had any idea where they were going.

9. You would have thought that God would give the Egyptians a break after the various plagues that they had been through, but no, God had one final idea for how he could show off to everybody.

The New Bible homepage can be found here.

Image courtesy of vectorolie at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

‘Protagonists’ in the Bible – Joseph

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Joseph managed to make quite a life for himself after being sold into slavery by his brothers for being an annoying little prick. During his life he managed to go from prisoner to the overseer of Egypt, and he got up to quite a lot of interesting things.

Joseph was the last child born to Jacob, and Jacob made it very clear to everybody that Joseph was his favorite. This was bad news for Joseph, because all of his brothers were jealous of him – and he had a lot of brothers.

Somehow, Joseph managed to make things even worse. He claimed that he had a couple of dreams, and in those dreams he was shown to rule over all of his brothers. Joseph was pretty stupid not to see how this would anger his brothers even more, and, after first plotting to kill him, they decided to sell him into slavery instead, because they were just so moral.

In an example of Biblical love, they sold Joseph to some passing travelers, and he eventually found himself in Egypt. Whilst God was busy putting people to death for all kinds of silly reasons, and Judah was being tricked by his family, Joseph became a servant for the captain of the guard. Talk about luck!

God apparently blessed Joseph, and made him succeed in everything he did, but stayed strangely quiet whilst Joseph was thrown in prison for a crime he did not commit. But Joseph kept his spirits high, and soon became the overseer of the prisons.

It was in those prisons that Joseph met the Pharaoh’s Cupbearer and baker, who were in the prison for some reason. They both had dreams one night, and t was then that Joseph found his calling – interpreting dreams. I.E listening to people’s ramblings and then making up a meaning for them.

He told the Cupbearer that he would be freed, and the baker that he would be brutally executed – you don’t even need to tell people what they want to hear to do this job! Who knows what made this random prisoner trustworthy or truthful, but people seemed to believe him.

Joseph’s predictions came true, and Joseph made the Cupbearer promise to tell the Pharaoh about him, but of course he forgot, didn’t he?

The Pharaoh had a couple of rather disturbing dreams two years later, and somehow, nobody in Egypt could ‘interpret’ them for him. I don’t know why anybody couldn’t just make up stories and guess what the dreams meant, but oh well.

It was then Joseph let the Pharaoh know about God’s plan: to give all of Egypt seven years of plentiful food, and then seven years of famine. God didn’t really have a reason to do it, he must’ve just been bored.

Despite having no experience and only doing one thing for the Pharaoh, Joseph was placed in charge of all of Egypt, and took food from the farmers to put in storehouses, which he later sold back to them.

After the seven years the famine struck, and soon enough the Egyptians had no money left, so Joseph started accepting payments in livestock, then in land, and then in slaves. Finally, when Joseph and the Pharaoh owned absolutely everything in the land, they gave away the food for free – but all the farmers had to give some of their food to the Pharaoh for the rest of their lives.

In a movie-style evil scheme, Joseph had taken over all of Egypt. Whilst celebrating, some of his brothers showed up to collect some food. Joseph seized this opportunity to get back at them – kind of.

Joseph messed with them, hiding silver in their sacks, and even one of his cups, then accused them of being spies. Somehow, to ‘prove’ that they weren’t spies, Joseph’s brothers were kept in prison, while one of them went and fetched the rest of his siblings.

His brothers talked together and were sure that they were being punished for selling Joseph all those years ago, and they were unaware that Joseph could understand them – he was using an interpreter, because in those years he had somehow completely forgotten how to speak the language that he was raised with.

Eventually the game was up, and Joseph revealed himself to his brothers. He forgave them, and made all of them move down to Egypt. He gave them land – but if I know the Bible, it probably had belonged to somebody else first.

Joseph spent the rest of his days living in Egypt, and, like his father, picked one of his sons as his favorite.

So, what did we learn about Joseph? He’s not a murderer, or a psychopath, which is a surprise. He did, however, partake in and execute a plan which allowed him to take over all of Egypt. He would make a great supervillain!

Image Courtesy of Salvatore Vuono at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

God’s ‘unconditional’ love

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As explained by many preachers, God’s love is absolute and unconditional. But according to the Bible, God’s a little unhinged, and plenty of things can make him hate your guts. Here’s just a few of them:

God hates you if:

  • You’re not circumcised

As part of a covenant with God, all members of Abraham’s family must be circumcised. How does this affect you? Well, according to the Bible, Abraham’s descendants were supposed to be as numerous as the stars in Heaven, or the dust on the earth. That’s a lot of descendants, and you may well be one of them.

What’s the punishment? Well, Moses’ son wasn’t circumcised, and God went off to kill him.

  • You’re deformed

God hates people with deformities and disabilities, and he makes it quite clear. If somebody’s testicles are damaged, not even their children of the tenth generation are allowed in church. Oh, yeah, God also hates the left-handed.

  • You work on the sabbath

It’s one of the Ten Commandments, so obviously God doesn’t like it, but it really stands out because God himself said to Moses to kill anybody who breaks this commandment. Kind of harsh, really.

  • You are circumcised

Yep, you think you’re obeying the will of God and then BAM! a massive contradiction. In Galatians, God says to Paul that anybody who has been circumcised is bound to follow the law, and that means you have been alienated from Christ, making you fall from grace even more.

  • You cover or uncover your head

Depending on what your gender is, God has rules for whether you’re supposed to cover your head during prayer and worship or not (1 Corinthians 11.) God hates men if they cover their heads, and, like Islam, God hates women if their heads are uncovered.

  • You wear gold, or clothes made from multiple materials

You need to live a modest life – save the riches for the church leaders, of course!

  • You consult psychics

Don’t you DARE speak to false prophets, God really hates that!

  • You eat weird animals

Leviticus 11:28-30 states that you can’t eat a number of little animals, including snails. Sorry France.

  • You play football

God hates pigs so much that he orders people to never touch them, so no football for you!

And these are just a few of the things that can earn you an eternity in Hell. God’s a pretty hard to please character, isn’t he?

An even bigger list of things that can send you to Hell, including talking to strange people and hanging from trees, can be found here.

The New Bible – Exodus 11 & 12

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God is almost finished showing off his power to the Pharaoh, and decides to kill hundreds of thousands of innocent people.

  1. God said to Moses, “I will plague the Egyptians once more for good measure, and then your people will be freed.”

2. “You’d better not make him change his mind again” Moses replied, shaking his fist. “Don’t worry about it, The Pharaoh’s gonna be so angry he’ll not just free you, but he’ll chase you out of Egypt and try to kill you!” God replied happily.

3. “I’m not sure I like the sound of that…” Moses said. “Relax, I’ve got it all figured out” God reassured him. But if God’s other promises were anything to go by, Moses had good reason to be worried.

4. “Now, here’s what I’m gonna do,” God explained, “At midnight, I will go through Egypt, and I will kill every single firstborn Egyptian in the land, including their animals, who are already dead from that other plague I did earlier.”

5. God had made his decision, and there was no stopping him. So that night he became a psychopathic mass-murderer, and wrecked havoc on the Egyptians. But no Israelite died, because God was smart enough to tell them apart.

6. But just before all that happened, Moses gave one of his soon-to-be-many speeches. “People, I know you had your doubts, but God’s going to finally come through for us! Prepare your stuff, soon we will be free!” Moses said, “Take a load of baby animals: We shall slaughter them all in the middle of the night, and smear their blood all over the walls of the Egyptians’ houses! Not sick in the slightest, I know! Then we will eat bread, but it can’t have yeast – God’ll kill us if we use yeast, he hates it!”

7. “You have to eat it in a specific way with special eating clothes, and burn all leftovers!” Moses said. By the time he was done with his speech it was morning, and the Pharaoh came up to him.

8. “Get out of my kingdom! Go and worship your sick God in the wilderness, just get out!” The Pharaoh ordered. The Egyptians wanted the Israelites to leave too.

9. “Get out, go away before more of us die!” They said. But Moses didn’t know when to stop pushing his luck. He left, but first he asked for a ton of stuff, including gold, silver and clothes – because they can’t go wandering about the wilderness naked, now can they?

10. So the 600,000+ Israelites all left Egypt, and set up camp somewhere, happy that they were finally free. Egypt must’ve felt pretty empty…

The New Bible homepage can be found here.

Image courtesy of vectorolie at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

 

‘Protagonists’ in the Bible – Satan

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Yes, I know that Satan is not usually considered a Biblical protagonist, but he’s done a couple of things worthy of admiration, and in reality he didn’t actually kill many people. So I’ll count him as a protagonist anyway.

Even though Jesus takes it upon himself several times to bad-mouth Satan, in reality he’s actually a pretty mild character, and he’s the one who gave us knowledge, which is something that God is (surprise, surprise) opposed to.

Satan started off as an angel, a perfect being created by God, just like the others. But the perfect being, God, created an imperfect being, and soon kicked him out of Heaven. God banished Satan to earth, which is kind of ridiculous considering that’s one place he doesn’t want evil to be. To quote the Thinking Atheist, ‘that’s like letting rabid dogs loose in a nursery.’

So after a perfect being created an imperfect being with full knowledge of what was going to happen, Satan ‘tricked’ Adam and Eve into eating from the tree of knowledge, which stopped them from being mindless servants of a mentally unstable deity. Unfortunately Satan wasn’t given a medal, or even a pat on the back. God instead wrote a giant hit-piece about him, desperately trying to make himself look like the good-guy.

Despite the Bible’s attempts to make Satan look evil, he only ever killed a handful of people – Job’s sons and daughters. But even then it was part of a bet with God! So really those deaths should be added onto God’s list with the millions of others.

In the Bible, Satan is credited with creating all things evil, and is responsible for everything bad in the world, but that claim doesn’t really stand up to scrutiny. For starters, if God has a divine plan, doesn’t that mean it’s God’s fault when evil happens? And doesn’t Isaiah 45:7 say that God is responsible for evil?

“I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the Lord do all these things.”

So really, isn’t Satan just a tool used by God to push his own agenda?

Satan does apparently live in Hell, which, according to Jesus, is a pretty nasty place. But then again, Jesus also promised to come back to earth within the lifetimes of his disciples, and he’s about 2000 years late. Can we trust anything Jesus says?

Image Courtesy of Salvatore Vuono at FreeDigitalPhotos.net