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punk
Nov 4th 2007, 11:57 PM
We've had a couple of rows regarding Joshua and the extermination of the Canaanites.

Basically God ordered Joshua to exterminate them, and Joshua did. One reading is that this makes God evil for ordering evil, another that whatever God orders must be good. There are probably more.

But here is the issue I want to look at here:

God is almighty. This means that if He wanted the Canaanites removed from the Holy Land prior to the Hebrews moving in, He was perfectly capable of doing it Himself. Hey, He could have made sure the Land lay empty until the Hebrews needed it if He wanted to.

So why order Joshua and the Hebrews to commit such attrocities?

Certainly it wasn't the only way to get the end result.

RSiscoe
Nov 5th 2007, 12:30 AM
So why order Joshua and the Hebrews to commit such attrocities?

Certainly it wasn't the only way to get the end result.

I'll give my opinion. I believe that the battles in the Old Testament signify the spiritual battles that we must face. The seven canaanite nations that God told the Israelites to destroy represent the seven capital sins that we must overcome. There are many parallels that can be drawn between the Old Testament battles and the spiritual battles that we have to face. For example, when God commanded Israel to kill the women and children, this has a spiritual parallel. "Women" represent the occaisions of sin, or the things that lead us to sin. In order to overcome sin, we must be willing to avoid even those things that lead us to sin, which is signified by "women"; the "children" represent small sins, or faults, which we must do battle with and overcome.

Just as God could have destroyed the seven canaanite nations by himself, and without any effort on the part of the Israelites, so too could He destroy all of our sinful tendencies and/or vices without any effort on our part... but that is not usually the way it happenes. We must fight in order to gain the victory, just as the Israelites had to do.

The battles in the Old Testament signify this spiritual "fight", and teach us what we must do to gain the victory. Paul said he "chastises his body daily to bring it under subjection" lest, after he has preached to others, he himself should be a castaway (1 Cor 9:27). God will help us, but he requires that we do our part by destroying the "nations" that rise up against us.

So, although that may not answer your question directly, I believe the battles in the Old Testament are there to serve as a parallel to the spiritual battles that we must endure.

I read a book years ago called Sin Revisited by Solange Strong Hertz, which draws the parallel between the battles found in the Old Testament and the spiritual battles that we face. She shows how each one of the seven chananite nations represents one of the seven capital sins; and how each of the seven nations have characteristic similar to the seven capital sins. Thus, the battles in the Old Testament show us in a physical way what we must do spiritually in order to overcome our enemies (the seven capital sins).

It was a fascinating book.

punk
Nov 5th 2007, 12:36 AM
I'll give my opinion. I believe that the battles in the Old Testament signify the spiritual battles that we must face. The seven canaanite nations that God told the Israelites to destroy represent the seven capital sins that we must overcome. There are many parallels that can be drawn between the Old Testament battles and the spiritual battles that we have to face. For example, when God commanded Israel to kill the women and children, this has a spiritual parallel. "Women" represent the occaisions of sin, or the things that lead us to sin. In order to overcome sin, we must be willing to avoid even those things that lead us to sin, which is signified by "women"; the "children" represent small sins, or faults, which we must do battle with and overcome.

Just as God could have destroyed the seven canaanite nations by himself, and without any effort on the part of the Israelites, so too could He destroy all of our sinful tendencies and/or vices without any effort on our part... but that is not usually the way it happenes. We must fight in order to gain the victory, just as the Israelites had to do.

The battles in the Old Testament signify this spiritual "fight", and teach us what we must do to gain the victory. Paul said he "chastises his body daily to bring it under subjection" lest, after he has preached to others, he himself should be a castaway (1 Cor 9:27). God will help us, but he requires that we do our part by destroying the "nations" that rise up against us.

So, although that may not answer your question directly, I believe the battles in the Old Testament are there to serve as a parallel to the spiritual battles that we must endure.

I read a book years ago called Sin Revisited by Solange Strong Hertz, which draws the parallel between the battles found in the Old Testament and the spiritual battles that we face. She shows how each one of the seven chananite nations represents one of the seven capital sins; and how each of the seven nations have characteristic similar to the seven capital sins. Thus, the battles in the Old Testament show us in a physical way what we must do spiritually in order to overcome our enemies (the seven capital sins).

It was a fascinating book.

One thing that strikes me about your approach is that it doesn't require that the battles be even historical. The could be entirely fictional and serve their purpose as an allegory for later readers to use in confronting sin.

In essence they would be parables.

RSiscoe
Nov 5th 2007, 12:43 AM
One thing that strikes me about your approach is that it doesn't require that the battles be even historical. The could be entirely fictional and serve their purpose as an allegory for later readers to use in confronting sin.

In essence they would be parables.

No, not at all. I firmly believe they were historical events. Many things in the Old Testament parallel, or prefigure, what is to happen in the New, but this does not mean the events did not truly happen. The one does not exclude the other. They are most certainly true historical events, but they also signified other things. For example, the lamb that was sacrificed as Passover prefigured "the true Lamb of God" who was sacrificed as Passover. By saying an event in the Old Testament prefigured, or even signified, some thing else does not mean the first event did not truly take place. Rather, I think it shows the depth of the holy Scriptures.

punk
Nov 5th 2007, 12:47 AM
No, not at all. I firmly believe they were historical events. Many things in the Old Testament parallel, or prefigure, what is to happen in the New, but this does not mean they events did not truly happen. The one does not exclude the other. They are most certainly true historical events, but they also signified other things. I think this shows the depth of the holy Scriptures.

Then I'm confused...

Are you saying that God set certain historical events into motion so that later readers of the text could then read the historical events as allegory?

It seems to me that if the text is ultimately read as allegory it no longer matters if the events actually happened.

RSiscoe
Nov 5th 2007, 01:20 AM
Then I'm confused...

Are you saying that God set certain historical events into motion so that later readers of the text could then read the historical events as allegory?

Yes, that is what I think. Like I said a the end of the last post, I think this shows the depth of the Scriptures. There is more to them than what appears on the surface. Not that this makes the surface meaning untrue; it is just that there is more to the scripture than the literal meaning. From the earliest years, Christians have discerned a fourfold level of interpretation to the scriptures, known as The Four senses of Scripture. These four senses, or four levels of interpretation, correspond to the three theological virtues of faith, hope, and charity, as well as our "reason". Our reason sees the surface or literal meaning. Everyone with the use of reason can discern this level. Faith shows us the allegorical sense of the scriptures; hope the "anagogical" or prophetic sense, while charity sees moral sense.

The four senses have also been compared to the body, soul and spirit, with the spirit being divided into the allegorical and anagogical (prophetic).

Origin: “For as man consists of body, and soul, and spirit, so in the same way does Scripture, which has been arranged to be given by God for the salvation of men.”

If you notice, St. Paul constantly interpreted the Old Testament according to the "allegorical sense". You will see this in 1 Cor 10, for example, as well as all throughout the book of Hebrews.

I'm sure we have all noticed these four levels without really thinking about it. This happens, for example, when we understand something on a deeper level than the surface meaning.


It seems to me that if the text is ultimately read as allegory it no longer matters if the events actually happened.

There is no need for an either or. What is contained in the Old Testament (in the Word of God, no less) is both historic, and can also signify other things.

I think some people have fallen into the error of reading only the allegorical level, for example, and then disregarding or even rejecting the literal sense. This is certainly an error, but it does not mean that there cannot exist more than one level of meaning simultaneously. The Bible is literally true, while at the same time signifying other things.

punk
Nov 5th 2007, 01:23 AM
What then of the Canaanite people now set up to be slaughtered so later generations can understand their own conflict with sin better?

Brother Mark
Nov 5th 2007, 01:26 AM
Well, in God's own words...

Gen 15:12-21

12 Now when the sun was going down, a deep sleep fell upon Abram; and behold, terror and great darkness fell upon him. 13 And God said to Abram, "Know for certain that your descendants will be strangers in a land that is not theirs, where they will be enslaved and oppressed four hundred years. 14 But I will also judge the nation whom they will serve; and afterward they will come out with many possessions. 15 And as for you, you shall go to your fathers in peace; you shall be buried at a good old age. 16 Then in the fourth generation they shall return here, for the iniquity of the Amorite is not yet complete." 17 And it came about when the sun had set, that it was very dark, and behold, there appeared a smoking oven and a flaming torch which passed between these pieces. 18 On that day the LORD made a covenant with Abram, saying,

"To your descendants I have given this land,
From the river of Egypt as far as the great river, the river Euphrates:

19 the Kenite and the Kenizzite and the Kadmonite 20 and the Hittite and the Perizzite and the Rephaim 21 and the Amorite and the Canaanite and the Girga****e and the Jebusite. "
NASB

God was waiting until the Amorite got so evil, that he would be moved to judge them. Then he used Joshua as a means of judging them.

He did the same thing with Israel and Babylon.

God is good and from the abundance of his heart, his mouth speaks.

punk
Nov 5th 2007, 01:30 AM
Well, in God's own words...

Gen 15:12-21

12 Now when the sun was going down, a deep sleep fell upon Abram; and behold, terror and great darkness fell upon him. 13 And God said to Abram, "Know for certain that your descendants will be strangers in a land that is not theirs, where they will be enslaved and oppressed four hundred years. 14 But I will also judge the nation whom they will serve; and afterward they will come out with many possessions. 15 And as for you, you shall go to your fathers in peace; you shall be buried at a good old age. 16 Then in the fourth generation they shall return here, for the iniquity of the Amorite is not yet complete." 17 And it came about when the sun had set, that it was very dark, and behold, there appeared a smoking oven and a flaming torch which passed between these pieces. 18 On that day the LORD made a covenant with Abram, saying,

"To your descendants I have given this land,
From the river of Egypt as far as the great river, the river Euphrates:

19 the Kenite and the Kenizzite and the Kadmonite 20 and the Hittite and the Perizzite and the Rephaim 21 and the Amorite and the Canaanite and the Girga****e and the Jebusite. "
NASB

God was waiting until the Amorite got so evil, that he would be moved to judge them. Then he used Joshua as a means of judging them.

He did the same thing with Israel and Babylon.

God is good and from the abundance of his heart, his mouth speaks.

Well the question was:

Why couldn't God judge them personally?

Why does He have Joshua do it for Him?

The point is God isn't so inept that He needs someone to do it for Him, He could perfectly do whatever judging was needed personally.

Brother Mark
Nov 5th 2007, 01:39 AM
Well the question was:

Why couldn't God judge them personally?

Why does He have Joshua do it for Him?

The point is God isn't so inept that He needs someone to do it for Him, He could perfectly do whatever judging was needed personally.

Well, here's the answer to that question. Not sure you will like it...

Ps 115:3
3 But our God is in the heavens;
He does whatever He pleases .
NASB


He can do it any way he pleases. One reason he used Joshua was hinted at in scripture... as an example to us. God was going to judge them and destroy them as Sodom and Gom. But to teach us how to do battle, he used Joshua. Now, our enemies are not flesh and blood. So the book of Joshua can be used to understand spiritual war fare now.

Call it anything you wish, but scripture never one time says what Joshua did was sin. Here's an interesting verse in Joshua.

Josh 5:13-15

13 Now it came about when Joshua was by Jericho, that he lifted up his eyes and looked, and behold, a man was standing opposite him with his sword drawn in his hand, and Joshua went to him and said to him, "Are you for us or for our adversaries?" 14 And he said, "No, rather I indeed come now as captain of the host of the LORD." And Joshua fell on his face to the earth, and bowed down, and said to him, "What has my lord to say to his servant?" 15 And the captain of the LORD'S host said to Joshua, "Remove your sandals from your feet, for the place where you are standing is holy." And Joshua did so.
NASB

God sent his heavenly soldiers to fight with Joshua. God fought for them and all scripture leads credence to what Joshua did. Never one time did God ever chastise Joshua for what he did.

Now, we do have an example where Saul disobeyed God for not doing as Joshua did and he was chastised severely.

punk
Nov 5th 2007, 01:47 AM
Well, here's the answer to that question. Not sure you will like it...

Ps 115:3
3 But our God is in the heavens;
He does whatever He pleases .
NASB


He can do it any way he pleases. One reason he used Joshua was hinted at in scripture... as an example to us. God was going to judge them and destroy them as Sodom and Gom. But to teach us how to do battle, he used Joshua. Now, our enemies are not flesh and blood. So the book of Joshua can be used to understand spiritual war fare now.

Call it anything you wish, but scripture never one time says what Joshua did was sin. Here's an interesting verse in Joshua.

Josh 5:13-15

13 Now it came about when Joshua was by Jericho, that he lifted up his eyes and looked, and behold, a man was standing opposite him with his sword drawn in his hand, and Joshua went to him and said to him, "Are you for us or for our adversaries?" 14 And he said, "No, rather I indeed come now as captain of the host of the LORD." And Joshua fell on his face to the earth, and bowed down, and said to him, "What has my lord to say to his servant?" 15 And the captain of the LORD'S host said to Joshua, "Remove your sandals from your feet, for the place where you are standing is holy." And Joshua did so.
NASB

God sent his heavenly soldiers to fight with Joshua. God fought for them and all scripture leads credence to what Joshua did. Never one time did God ever chastise Joshua for what he did.

Now, we do have an example where Saul disobeyed God for not doing as Joshua did and he was chastised severely.

Let us bear in mind that Saul wasn't chastised for being merciful, he was chastised for killing everyone except the king, and not destroying the livestock (as ordered) but keeping it to get rich.

The disobedience didn't arise out of any noble motives.

But this isn't about Saul. This is about Joshua.

The point at hand is that it was totally unnecessary to make the Hebrews a band of murderers.

Did they need to know how to fight?

Arguably, no, since God was also in a position to protect them.

Heck with God on your side you can live without any weapons in cities without walls and God will take care of you.

Any assumption that the Hebrews needed to learn how to fight is odd, since that assumes that God is unabled to protect them.

This is essentially the same reason why I find the need to justify militarism (being soldiers and so on) within Christianity to be odd (in fact it looks distinctly like a lack of faith).

If God is behind you, what arms do you need? You only need to know how to fight wars if you think you cannot count on God to protect you.

Slug, this is your cue...

RSiscoe
Nov 5th 2007, 01:50 AM
What then of the Canaanite people now set up to be slaughtered so later generations can understand their own conflict with sin better?

I don't think that is the reason they were slaughtered. It just so happens that their slaughtering serves as a parallel.

My guess as to why God commanded these people to be slaughtered is similar to the reason He rained down fire on Sodom and Gomorah, and destroyed the world by the flood. I think these people were totally currupt. It's been a while, but I have read about some of the corrupt practices of those people: they practiced child sacrifice, and many other barbarities. God is just, and I think He destroyed them because they were corrupt and deserved to be destroyed.

It just so happens that the battles in which they were destroyed parallel the spiritual battles that we face. Maybe this is an example of God turning a negative into a positive. In His justice he destroys them, while at the same time giving us an example of how we must fight our spiritual battles.

punk
Nov 5th 2007, 01:52 AM
I don't think that is the reason they were slaughtered. It just so happens that their slaughtering serves as a parallel.

My guess as to why God commanded these people to be slaughtered is similar to the reason He rained down fire on Sodom and Gomorah, and destroyed the world by the flood. I think these people were totally currupt. It's been a while, but I have read about some of the corrupt practices of them: they practiced child sacrifice, and many other barbarities. God is just, and I think He destroyed them because they were corrupt and deserved to be destroyed.

It just so happens that the battles in which they were destroyed parallel the spiritual battles that we face.

So, if they had chosen to live more righteously we would have been deprived of these allegories about how to combat sin, and God would have had to find somewhere else to settle the Hebrews?

RSiscoe
Nov 5th 2007, 02:01 AM
So, if they had chosen to live more righteously we would have been deprived of these allegories about how to combat sin, and God would have had to find somewhere else to settle the Hebrews?

I doubt it. If the Canaanites lived righteously, God would have probably found another way to have them leave the land He promised to the children of Israel, or possibly never allowed the Canaanites to live there in the first place.

What I think for sure is that if the Canaanites were good and holy people who were trying their best to serve God, He would not have told the Israelites to kill them.

Brother Mark
Nov 5th 2007, 02:08 AM
Let us bear in mind that Saul wasn't chastised for being merciful, he was chastised for killing everyone except the king, and not destroying the livestock (as ordered) but keeping it to get rich.

Well, the scripture says he kept it to offer sacrifice. But it doesn't matter. He was chastised because he KEPT it regardless of motive. He should have destroyed everyone. The Prophet Samuel killed Agag himself.


The disobedience didn't arise out of any noble motives.

Disobedience rarely does.


But this isn't about Saul. This is about Joshua.

The point at hand is that it was totally unnecessary to make the Hebrews a band of murderers.

Did they need to know how to fight?

Well, according to God, he not only wanted them to fight, but he left some of the enemy in the land so that the children might learn to war.

Judg 3:1-2
3:1 Now these are the nations which the LORD left, to test Israel by them (that is, all who had not experienced any of the wars of Canaan; 2 only in order that the generations of the sons of Israel might be taught war , those who had not experienced it formerly).
NASB


Arguably, no, since God was also in a position to protect them.

Heck with God on your side you can live without any weapons in cities without walls and God will take care of you.

Slice it any way you want. God wanted Israel to go to war against those that occupied Canaan. When they came upon someone He did not want them to fight, he told them not to do it. Here's an example.

Deut 2:9-10
9 Then the LORD said to me, 'Do not harass Moab , nor provoke them to war , for I will not give you any of their land as a possession, because I have given Ar to the sons of Lot as a possession.
NASB

God was quite capable of telling Joshua to stop at any point. But he didn't. He not only told them to go into battle, but as the scripture I showed earlier indicated, he actually led them into battle.


Any assumption that the Hebrews needed to learn how to fight is odd, since that assumes that God is unabled to protect them.

Except scripture says that God protected them through war. Not with chariots and horses, but war. Why? To teach us about spiritual warfare later.


This is essentially the same reason why I find the need to justify militarism (being soldiers and so on) within Christianity to be odd (in fact it looks distinctly like a lack of faith).

If God is behind you, what arms do you need? You only need to know how to fight wars if you think you cannot count on God to protect you.

Slug, this is your cue...

Scripture clearly teaches that Joshua was sent to war by God. God even saw to it that some were left so that the sons of Israel could learn to war.

punk
Nov 5th 2007, 02:13 AM
Except scripture says that God protected them through war. Not with chariots and horses, but war. Why? To teach us about spiritual warfare later.

Aha! So you are basically in agreement with RSiscoe.

Brother Mark
Nov 5th 2007, 02:15 AM
Aha! So you are basically in agreement with RSiscoe.

Aha! I am in agreement with the word. Gonna address the rest of the points? Like God wanted the sons to learn warfare? It's there. Right in scripture.

RSiscoe
Nov 5th 2007, 02:19 AM
Aha! So you are basically in agreement with RSiscoe.

Hey, should I be offended at that comment?

punk
Nov 5th 2007, 05:53 PM
Aha! I am in agreement with the word. Gonna address the rest of the points? Like God wanted the sons to learn warfare? It's there. Right in scripture.

The root question is still there:

If God is almighty (and thus can do whatever he wants), why would his children ever need to learn warfare?

It would seem to make sense that if we need to know how to fight, then that can only mean we cannot rely on God to help us.

Why can't we rely on God?

punk
Nov 5th 2007, 05:55 PM
Hey, should I be offended at that comment?

I just wanted to bring out that you two happened to agree where I think the heart of the issue lies.

:lol:

Brother Mark
Nov 5th 2007, 05:57 PM
The root question is still there:

If God is almighty (and thus can do whatever he wants), why would his children ever need to learn warfare?

It would seem to make sense that if we need to know how to fight, then that can only mean we cannot rely on God to help us.

Why can't we rely on God?

Already gave you a verse where God wanted Israel to learn warfare. Depending on God? Yes. The question presumes an answer that war is wrong. But that is not an absolute. War can be just, Joshua and Saul both were part of just wars.

I can quote the verse again if you like. Relying on God sometimes requires going to war.

punk
Nov 5th 2007, 06:43 PM
Already gave you a verse where God wanted Israel to learn warfare. Depending on God? Yes. The question presumes an answer that war is wrong. But that is not an absolute. War can be just, Joshua and Saul both were part of just wars.

I can quote the verse again if you like. Relying on God sometimes requires going to war.

That's good, and if you read the OP again you will note that I was simply asking for people's thoughts on the matter.

If your opinion is that there isn't anything terribly wrong with mass-murder, and that God ordering people to engage in mass-murder isn't terribly different from God ordering people to give to the poor, that's fine.

If mass-murder can be good in the same way feeding the hungry is, then we've learned something about what "good" is.

Brother Mark
Nov 5th 2007, 07:07 PM
That's good, and if you read the OP again you will note that I was simply asking for people's thoughts on the matter.

If your opinion is that there isn't anything terribly wrong with mass-murder, and that God ordering people to engage in mass-murder isn't terribly different from God ordering people to give to the poor, that's fine.

If mass-murder can be good in the same way feeding the hungry is, then we've learned something about what "good" is.

Oh, I never condoned mass murder. Scripture makes a distinction between murder and killing. David, a man after God's own heart, went to war often at the word of God. There's a difference between killing and murder.

No matter how you slice it, it's hard to get away from what scripture actually teaches about war. It's there, to the chagrin of many of my passifist friends.

punk
Nov 5th 2007, 07:17 PM
Oh, I never condoned mass murder. Scripture makes a distinction between murder and killing. David, a man after God's own heart, went to war often at the word of God. There's a difference between killing and murder.

No matter how you slice it, it's hard to get away from what scripture actually teaches about war. It's there, to the chagrin of many of my passifist friends.

It is nice that for a given action, choosing one word to name it makes it bad, but using a different word makes it good.

People will just have to come up with another word for "adultery" for that act, maybe "sladapo", where we understand that it is bad if it is "adultery" but perfectly justifiable if it is "sladapo".

:lol:

Brother Mark
Nov 5th 2007, 07:22 PM
It is nice that for a given action, choosing one word to name it makes it bad, but using a different word makes it good.

People will just have to come up with another word for "adultery" for that act, maybe "sladapo", where we understand that it is bad if it is "adultery" but perfectly justifiable if it is "sladapo".

:lol:

Show me from scripture where killing someone in battle, by God's order, is considered murder.

Don't you agree that when we define the words instead of allowing scripture to do so, that we are in danger of creating our own doctrine? Scripture makes deliniation between killing and murder. Shouldn't we?

But again, why not use the word to back up your position, instead of using good sound bites?

watchinginawe
Nov 5th 2007, 07:27 PM
If mass-murder can be good in the same way feeding the hungry is, then we've learned something about what "good" is.In the spirit of the OP,
God is almighty. This means that if He wanted the Canaanites removed from the Holy Land prior to the Hebrews moving in, He was perfectly capable of doing it Himself. Hey, He could have made sure the Land lay empty until the Hebrews needed it if He wanted to.
Why not let God feed the hungry? What have we to add to the process when God can just transport food straight to the digestive system of the hungry, or in the least provide manna daily. Why does doing God's will in the area of feeding the hungry make one "good"? Why is man involved?

RSiscoe
Nov 5th 2007, 07:28 PM
It is nice that for a given action, choosing one word to name it makes it bad, but using a different word makes it good.

People will just have to come up with another word for "adultery" for that act, maybe "sladapo", where we understand that it is bad if it is "adultery" but perfectly justifiable if it is "sladapo".

:lol:

Well, let's think about it. Adultery, which is having sexual relations with another person's spouse (or with someone other than our own spouse), is forbidded, while at the same time sexual relations with our own spouse is permitted... and even encouraged.

Here we have an example of the exact same physical act being both forbidden and allowed.

Sexual relations with one's spouse could be compared to killing in war (don't take that comparrison too literally :lol:), while adultery could be compared to murder. Circumstances change the morality of certain acts - not all acts, but certain act - and taking the life of another is one of them.

Friend of I AM
Nov 5th 2007, 07:31 PM
We've had a couple of rows regarding Joshua and the extermination of the Canaanites.

Basically God ordered Joshua to exterminate them, and Joshua did. One reading is that this makes God evil for ordering evil, another that whatever God orders must be good. There are probably more.

But here is the issue I want to look at here:

God is almighty. This means that if He wanted the Canaanites removed from the Holy Land prior to the Hebrews moving in, He was perfectly capable of doing it Himself. Hey, He could have made sure the Land lay empty until the Hebrews needed it if He wanted to.

So why order Joshua and the Hebrews to commit such attrocities?

Certainly it wasn't the only way to get the end result.

I didn't finish reading every post in this thread, so forgive me if someone has already mentioned this - but the Cannanites apparently had Nephilim blood within them. God was trying to get rid of the remnants of the Nephilim by telling the Israelites to exterminate them. He didn't want to do another flood thing - where he had to purge most of the filth from the earth in order to allow the coming of the son of man(Christ) to save mankind.

punk
Nov 5th 2007, 07:31 PM
Well, let's think about it. Adultery, which is having sexual relations with another person's spouse (or with someone other than our own spouse), is forbidded, while at the same time sexual relations with our own spouse is permitted... and even encouraged.

Here we have an example of the exact same physical act being both forbidden and allowed.

Sexual relations with one's spouse could be compared to killing in war, while adultery could be compared to murder. Circumstances change the morality of certain acts - not all acts, but certain act - and taking the life of another is one of them.

That argument might work if you were saying that it isn't okay to kill your countrymen, but it is okay to kill everyone else (which would be a closer analogy).

RSiscoe
Nov 5th 2007, 07:34 PM
It is nice that for a given action, choosing one word to name it makes it bad, but using a different word makes it good.

People will just have to come up with another word for "adultery" for that act, maybe "sladapo", where we understand that it is bad if it is "adultery" but perfectly justifiable if it is "sladapo".

:lol:

Well, let's think about it. Adultery, which is sexual relatios with another person's spouse (or with someone other than our own spouse), is forbidded, while at the same time sexual relations with oue spouse is permitted... and even encouraged.

Here we have an example of the exact same physical act being both forbidden and allowed.

Sexual relations with one's spouse could be compared to killing in war (don't take that too literally :lol:), while adultery could be compared to murder. Circumstances change the morality of certain acts - not all acts, but certain act - and taking the life of another is one of them.

So, using your example, having relations with someone other than your spouse would be called adultery, while having relations with your spouse would be called "sladapo".

punk
Nov 5th 2007, 07:43 PM
I didn't finish reading every post in this thread, so forgive me if someone has already mentioned this - but the Cannanites apparently had Nephilim blood within them. God was trying to get rid of the remnants of the Nephilim by telling the Israelites to exterminate them. He didn't want to do another flood thing - where he had to purge most of the filth from the earth in order to allow the coming of the son of man(Christ) to save mankind.

Well the question was:

Why couldn't God take care of them Himself? (He's almighty after all)

drutland
Nov 7th 2007, 03:45 AM
The book of Enoch tells the story of the watchers that came to earth and took wives of the daughters of men. These guys apparently had knowledge of how to make physical bodies. they where able to inject a demonic strain of dna into humans. Noah was "perfect" in his generation, i.e. pure human dna. Unfortunatley one of his daughter in laws carried some recessive nephilim genetic material because we see the giant population spring up again, in where of all places?" The promised land of course. They knew where the messiah was gonna be born so that is where they went in hopes of infecting the line of the pormised one.
I know a lot of this is speculation, but hey, fact is stranger than fiction. I can see where this might have been the case. So how does this tie in to your question. Well, go back to where the warders learn this craft, it says they don't make themselves bodies but they are able to have sex that yeild GIANT offspring. They don't really enter the physical plane but they impact it in a huge way. That seems to me how God works in our time. He doesn't pop in solve our porblems and then pop back up to heaven. He does his work through men. those who love him and even those who don't. It's kinda like the physical plane and spiritual plane don't touch and God doesn't cross that line personally. Well not since the accension but you get the idea.
Dave

Teke
Nov 7th 2007, 09:10 PM
We've had a couple of rows regarding Joshua and the extermination of the Canaanites.

Basically God ordered Joshua to exterminate them, and Joshua did. One reading is that this makes God evil for ordering evil, another that whatever God orders must be good. There are probably more.

But here is the issue I want to look at here:

God is almighty. This means that if He wanted the Canaanites removed from the Holy Land prior to the Hebrews moving in, He was perfectly capable of doing it Himself. Hey, He could have made sure the Land lay empty until the Hebrews needed it if He wanted to.

So why order Joshua and the Hebrews to commit such attrocities?

Certainly it wasn't the only way to get the end result.

Probably this was God's way of getting them ready to live in the land. All the "men of war" were dead by this time (least scripture says the ones from Egypt were). Joshua and the rest of the younger men had never learned about war.
I can't recall the exact scripture right now, that says they had never learned about war, but it's in there. ;)

Practically speaking, war was something they needed to know about, as it was something they would be faced with in life. Isaiah prophecies that one day men will not need to learn war anymore.

And your right, God could also do it Himself any way He liked as well. As at times some of those peoples were just plain afraid of Israel ie. God caused their hearts to melt within them because of Israel.
God is establishing a new nation, so He is getting attention for Israel in the land He's establishing them in.

So you could say they had a lot of learning experiences, war being one of them. God's power being another ie. walls of Jericho falling etc.

Likely some knew the rules of war and passed them on. As war was perfectly acceptable in the time and place. There were just certain rules, like you couldn't destroy all of the people of a land or you couldn't learn necessary things about the land itself. Like what it produced or not, and without economy the land would come to lay in waste and be taken over by beasts, such as happened with Samaria and the lions.
All the historical wars followed these same rules.

Brother Mark
Nov 7th 2007, 09:16 PM
Probably this was God's way of getting them ready to live in the land. All the "men of war" were dead by this time (least scripture says the ones from Egypt were). Joshua and the rest of the younger men had never learned about war.
I can't recall the exact scripture right now, that says they had never learned about war, but it's in there. ;)

Well, there is a scripture about that when they first came out of Egypt. That is why God led them away from Canaan to begin with. They did not know how to fight.

Ex 13:17

17 Now it came about when Pharaoh had let the people go, that God did not lead them by the way of the land of the Philistines, even though it was near; for God said, "Lest the people change their minds when they see war, and they return to Egypt."
NASB



Practically speaking, war was something they needed to know about, as it was something they would be faced with in life. Isaiah prophecies that one day men will not need to learn war anymore.

And your right, God could also do it Himself any way He liked as well. As at times some of those peoples were just plain afraid of Israel ie. God caused their hearts to melt within them because of Israel.
God is establishing a new nation, so He is getting attention for Israel in the land He's establishing them in.

So you could say they had a lot of learning experiences, war being one of them. God's power being another ie. walls of Jericho falling etc.


Agreed.


Likely some knew the rules of war and passed them on. As war was perfectly acceptable in the time and place. There were just certain rules, like you couldn't destroy all of the people of a land or you couldn't learn necessary things about the land itself. Like what it produced or not, and without economy the land would come to lay in waste and be taken over by beasts, such as happened with Samaria and the lions.
All the historical wars followed these same rules.


Also, as for Canaan, they were told to dispossess the Canaanites and other ites from the land. That is a different command that what Saul was given.

Teke
Nov 7th 2007, 09:29 PM
Well, there is a scripture about that when they first came out of Egypt. That is why God led them away from Canaan to begin with. They did not know how to fight.

Ex 13:17

17 Now it came about when Pharaoh had let the people go, that God did not lead them by the way of the land of the Philistines, even though it was near; for God said, "Lest the people change their minds when they see war, and they return to Egypt."
NASB

No, that is not it. I've posted it before, I just can't recall how it was worded. It wasn't "see war", it was more "learn war".

Ah, I found it. But it's not related to Joshua's time. It's Judges.

Jdg 3:1 Now these [are] the nations which the LORD left, to prove Israel by them, [even] as many [of Israel] as had not known all the wars of Canaan;

Jdg 3:2 Only that the generations of the children of Israel might know, to teach them war, at the least such as before knew nothing thereof;

That "before knew nothing thereof" is what threw me off. :D
I knew it was related to their learning.

Here is the ones on the "men of war" being dead.

Deu 2:16 So it came to pass, when all the men of war were consumed and dead from among the people,

Jos 5:4 And this [is] the cause why Joshua did circumcise: All the people that came out of Egypt, [that were] males, [even] all the men of war, died in the wilderness by the way, after they came out of Egypt.

Brother Mark
Nov 7th 2007, 09:36 PM
No, that is not it. I've posted it before, I just can't recall how it was worded. It wasn't "see war", it was more "learn war".

Ah, I found it. But it's not related to Joshua's time. It's Judges.

Jdg 3:1 Now these [are] the nations which the LORD left, to prove Israel by them, [even] as many [of Israel] as had not known all the wars of Canaan;

Jdg 3:2 Only that the generations of the children of Israel might know, to teach them war, at the least such as before knew nothing thereof;

That "before knew nothing thereof" is what threw me off. :D
I knew it was related to their learning.

Here is the ones on the "men of war" being dead.

Deu 2:16 So it came to pass, when all the men of war were consumed and dead from among the people,

Jos 5:4 And this [is] the cause why Joshua did circumcise: All the people that came out of Egypt, [that were] males, [even] all the men of war, died in the wilderness by the way, after they came out of Egypt.

Right! This was after the land was conquered. God wanted some left so that those in the land, would learn how to fight.

punk
Nov 8th 2007, 06:26 PM
The tacit assumption is still that God cannot or will not protect the people from threats in the future.

I mean if God is going to protect you, you don't need to learn war.

Why would God leave it to the people to kill to protect themselves, when God could take care of the problem Himself?

Teke
Nov 8th 2007, 07:36 PM
Perhaps the answer is in the psychology of war and its effect on the human spirit.

punk
Nov 8th 2007, 07:55 PM
If we assume that war and the preparation for war is good for the human spirit, then it would seem to follow that:

1. Christians should be pushing for mandatory military service for everyone

2. Christians should be pushing for more wars so that humanity can benefit from the spiritual goods nurtured by war

In that case not only is pacifism wrong, but militarism for militarism's sake would be a virture.

...

In this case it would appear that the Knights Templar rather than Francis of Assisi got Christianity right.

Teke
Nov 8th 2007, 10:04 PM
Pro 16:25 There is a way that seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof [are] the ways of death.

Seems the "right" is in the mind of man.

nzyr
Nov 9th 2007, 09:51 AM
No matter how you slice it, it's hard to get away from what scripture actually teaches about war. It's there, to the chagrin of many of my passifist friends.But Israel was a theocracy. Does God tell nations today to go to war?

nzyr
Nov 9th 2007, 10:09 AM
So why order Joshua and the Hebrews to commit such attrocities?

They weren't atrocities. What the Canaanites were doing were atrocities. They wouldn't repent. They did all kinds of bad things. They tried to keep the Israelites out of the land for one thing. They were a threat to God's people. They were a threat to God's plan for the world. God ordered them to be destroyed. And God is perfect. So it was right.

nzyr
Nov 9th 2007, 10:19 AM
The point at hand is that it was totally unnecessary to make the Hebrews a band of murderers.


They weren't murderers. I guess you could say that they were the instruments of God's judgement on the Canaanites. The Canaanites did all kinds of terrible things. Including child sacrifice.

OldChurchGuy
Nov 14th 2007, 04:53 AM
We've had a couple of rows regarding Joshua and the extermination of the Canaanites.

Basically God ordered Joshua to exterminate them, and Joshua did. One reading is that this makes God evil for ordering evil, another that whatever God orders must be good. There are probably more.

But here is the issue I want to look at here:

God is almighty. This means that if He wanted the Canaanites removed from the Holy Land prior to the Hebrews moving in, He was perfectly capable of doing it Himself. Hey, He could have made sure the Land lay empty until the Hebrews needed it if He wanted to.

So why order Joshua and the Hebrews to commit such attrocities?

Certainly it wasn't the only way to get the end result.
Much depends on how one wants to interpret the book of Joshua. If one wants to take it literally, then (it seems to me anyway) one is obligated to somehow excuse Joshua's actions while also distancing ourselves from the idea such an action is acceptable in this day and time.

Alternately, it is my understanding there is no hard archaelogical evidence that Joshua and his army did the acts recorded in the book of Joshua. It appears Caanan at the time of Joshua was under Egyptian control. So far, archaeology has not turned up anything to verify the book of Joshua (search, for example, the Armana Letters on the internet).

The lack of archaeological evidence does not disprove the book of Joshua, but it does seem odd that there no evidence has appeared to verify the writings.

For example, the battle of Jericho was thought to have been proven by an archaeologist with the last name of Garstang (as I recall). His findings and interpretations seemed to indicate that the fall of Jericho as recorded in Joshua was accurate. Then, in the 1950s a British archaeologist named Kathleen Kenyon concluded Gargstang was wrong in his conclusions. She concluded that Jericho was probably an abandoned city by the time of Joshua. She wrote a book about it called "Digging up Jericho". To the best of my knowledge, this book and her findings have not been refuted.

If the story of Joshua is not backed up by archaeology, does that mean the stories are false? Not necessarily, but it does seem strange that there is no evidence outside the book of Joshua.

So what is an alternative idea? Glad you asked. :)

There is a theory that the book of Joshua is a collection of recollections and stories handed down through the generations which were intended to justify Israel's taking over of the land. What better excuse than to say that God ordered it? Who can disprove the idea? The theory goes that the stories were developed to reinforce the idea that God with with the Israelites.

Understand, this alternative idea cannot be proven. Just wanted you to be aware of it.

As always,

OldChurchGuy

Teke
Nov 14th 2007, 06:13 PM
Much depends on how one wants to interpret the book of Joshua. If one wants to take it literally, then (it seems to me anyway) one is obligated to somehow excuse Joshua's actions while also distancing ourselves from the idea such an action is acceptable in this day and time.

Alternately, it is my understanding there is no hard archaelogical evidence that Joshua and his army did the acts recorded in the book of Joshua. It appears Caanan at the time of Joshua was under Egyptian control. So far, archaeology has not turned up anything to verify the book of Joshua (search, for example, the Armana Letters on the internet).

The lack of archaeological evidence does not disprove the book of Joshua, but it does seem odd that there no evidence has appeared to verify the writings.

For example, the battle of Jericho was thought to have been proven by an archaeologist with the last name of Garstang (as I recall). His findings and interpretations seemed to indicate that the fall of Jericho as recorded in Joshua was accurate. Then, in the 1950s a British archaeologist named Kathleen Kenyon concluded Gargstang was wrong in his conclusions. She concluded that Jericho was probably an abandoned city by the time of Joshua. She wrote a book about it called "Digging up Jericho". To the best of my knowledge, this book and her findings have not been refuted.

If the story of Joshua is not backed up by archaeology, does that mean the stories are false? Not necessarily, but it does seem strange that there is no evidence outside the book of Joshua.

So what is an alternative idea? Glad you asked. :)

There is a theory that the book of Joshua is a collection of recollections and stories handed down through the generations which were intended to justify Israel's taking over of the land. What better excuse than to say that God ordered it? Who can disprove the idea? The theory goes that the stories were developed to reinforce the idea that God with with the Israelites.

Understand, this alternative idea cannot be proven. Just wanted you to be aware of it.

As always,

OldChurchGuy

Hey OldChurchGuy, I agree with your theory of Israel justifying themselves. And I believe that the scriptures prove this out. I left my last post with only a scripture because I believe it is in how one sees this in their own mind, whether a thing be right or wrong.

When we read of blessed Stephen in Acts giving his defense before the priests. Stephen glows with the radiance of divine energy (Acts 6:15) as he speaks the truth to them. He first lays out a proper context to answer his accusers. That very context lays out the deception and unfaithfulness of Israel to God in all they did.

Stephen shows great wisdom of scripture in what he puts forth. As he shows in the telling of Israels wickedness and how God dealt with them because of it, which was to further and further disperse them in the land. Acts 7:40 shows their unwillingness to believe in God, as verses 42 and 43 declare what they did (in also worshiping other gods, Moloch and Remphan) and God's response (carry them "away beyond Babylon", in Amos the prophet says "Damascus").

Does the holy Stephen lie, if so why kill him as they did. Saul (later Paul) is present for this hearing and speaks not a word, if he had they could not have stoned Stephen (according to their law). But Israel doesn't want to hear such things as they are meant to be by God. The stubborn persist in their eminence (ex. see the Jewish poster Fenris in the Contro forum here, as he posts furthering such ideals as the eminence of Israel).

Perhaps Israel thought one of their gods gave them that land and the whole world, but it was not our God, because our God doesn't fail. ;)

As an overview, Joshua is about Israels settlement in the land under Joshua and the priests, Judges is Israels failure in that. Samuel is about Israels settlement in the land under Samuel and kings, and Kings is Israels failure in that.

Here (http://elvis.rowan.edu/~kilroy/CHRISTIA/library/jericho.html) is some more info on Jericho and archeology to ponder.

I agree that interpretation matters, and I agree with Punk that one person can make a difference depending on their response. Scripture does not say otherwise. :)

I'll probably be accused of bashing Israel. We're all entitled to our own opinions. And I just finished in the non instrument thread, in a similar vein, of showing Israel was wrong, according to their prophets, that they would not hear. ie. Amos who says in ch 6, "The Lord God hath sworn by Himself, saith the Lord the God of Hosts, "I abhor the excellence of Jacob....

Teke
Nov 21st 2007, 06:47 PM
I thought of another person, to add to this thread, from scripture, who's words made a difference and stopped the killing of others. The woman Abagail in 1 Sam. 25, spoke to David and stopped his anger to go and kill people by reminding him that God was able to take care of those people Himself. Abagail's husband Nabal died, but not by Davids hand.;)

Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called the children of God. :saint:

Brother Mark
Nov 21st 2007, 06:49 PM
I thought of another person, to add to this thread, from scripture, who's words made a difference and stopped the killing of others. The woman Abagail in 1 Sam. 25, spoke to David and stopped his anger to go and kill people by reminding him that God was able to take care of those people Himself. Abagail's husband Nabal died, but not by Davids hand.;)

Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called the children of God. :saint:

Excellent example! Nor did David have governmental authority to deal with Nabal.

nzyr
Nov 23rd 2007, 05:32 AM
Much depends on how one wants to interpret the book of Joshua. If one wants to take it literally, then (it seems to me anyway) one is obligated to somehow excuse Joshua's actions while also distancing ourselves from the idea such an action is acceptable in this day and time.

Joshua only did what God told him to do. He did nothing wrong in obeying God.