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pk9021
Dec 25th 2008, 11:33 PM
Hi, all.

I grew up in a Unitarian Universalist church, so I never really had a specific set of beliefs about my religion. I've been reading a lot about Christianity, lately. If the Bible really is true, that'd be quite awesome, but from reading it I am getting very mixed signals and am half the time disgusted :(

Can anyone provide a coherent explanation to these quotes please!!??


"When the Lord your God brings you into the land you are entering to possess and drives out before you may nations...then you must destroy them totally. Make no treaty with them and show them no mercy." Deuteronomy 7:1-2, NIV.

"...do not leave alive anything that breaths. Completely destroy them...as the Lord your God has commanded you..." Deuteronomy 20:16, NIV.

These quotes seem to approve of brutally and without mercy exterminating a group of people.

When a man sells his daughter as a slave, she will not be freed at the end of six years as the men are. If she does not please the man who bought her, he may allow her to be bought back again. But he is not allowed to sell her to foreigners, since he is the one who broke the contract with her. And if the slave girl's owner arranges for her to marry his son, he may no longer treat her as a slave girl, but he must treat her as his daughter. If he himself marries her and then takes another wife, he may not reduce her food or clothing or fail to sleep with her as his wife. If he fails in any of these three ways, she may leave as a free woman without making any payment. (Exodus 21:7-11 NLT)

"....or fail to sleep with her as his wife," being the key phrase as "her" refers to the sold daughter for sexual purposes. This just seems gross and disgusting.

When a man strikes his male or female slave with a rod so hard that the slave dies under his hand, he shall be punished. If, however, the slave survives for a day or two, he is not to be punished, since the slave is his own property. (Exodus 21:20-21 NAB)

This one advocates murdering slaves as long as it is not immediate....

Slaves, obey your earthly masters with deep respect and fear. Serve them sincerely as you would serve Christ. (Ephesians 6:5 NLT)

advocating slavery again....


"Behold, I will cast her into a bed, and them that commit adultery with her into great tribulation, except they repent of their deeds. And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I am he which searcheth the reins and hearts: and I will give unto every one of you according to your works." (Revelation 2:22-23)

This one says that if a woman commits adultery, then he will kill her children, which are completely innocent of the act.




So yeah, as a seeker of Christ I really ask for some well-thought-out answers, please! It is very troubling to me.

Thank you all very much!

Alaska
Dec 26th 2008, 12:37 AM
There is a major difference between the Old and New testaments.
Numerous laws from the OT were there to deal with situations that already existed from a cultural standpoint.
Jesus had not come yet and in their unregenerated human condition some of the OT was there to regulate things so, like it or not, it was the choosing the better of the two evils in many situations.
To destroy all in the heavily spiritually infected pagan societies was better than allowing them to live and assuredly in time corrupt Israel and be pulled away from the true God by the Pagan practices.
Even after destroying many of these cultures the remaining few still succeeded sometimes in polluting the people of God in the OT.
Yes some of the OT catered to what was deemed by many to be acceptable, but which in reality of the revelation provided by in the NT is totally not acceptable.
The NT reference was not at all a condoning of slavery. Christians lived in a society that had slavery as a rooted foundational aspect of that society.
Like we obey traffic laws because driving is part of our culture so it was wise to cooperate with the norms as opposed to being executed or sold to another master that was even worse.

The reference in Rev. refers to spiritual adultery which would include idolatry. His promise to kill is similar to the NT promise that idolaters shall not inherit the kingdom of God. Her children would relate to those who are also evil doers and idolaters, not literal children. That is symbolic.

You should only stay in the gospels for now in seeking the Lord.
The milk of the word in the gospels gives you a feel for the two covenants, the OT that has been replaced by the NT.
You will get confused by reading the OT right now without the basic knowledge that believers in Jesus are not under that system that has been done away with in a certain sense because of Jesus' sacrifice.

John 1:
17 For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.

Joe King
Dec 26th 2008, 02:55 AM
In the Old Testament there was no Jesus to intercede. It was direct contact with God. He is harsh because he can not tolerate evil, or else he wouldn't be God. They were looking to a future savior who would free them. We have our savior who died for us, freeing all believers. We are now under grace.

mcgyver
Dec 26th 2008, 06:16 AM
Hi, all.

I grew up in a Unitarian Universalist church, so I never really had a specific set of beliefs about my religion. I've been reading a lot about Christianity, lately. If the Bible really is true, that'd be quite awesome, but from reading it I am getting very mixed signals and am half the time disgusted :(

Can anyone provide a coherent explanation to these quotes please!!??

Hi, and welcome!!!

You've asked some good questions, and I'll try to answer them as best as I can given the limits of a message board. :P


"When the Lord your God brings you into the land you are entering to possess and drives out before you may nations...then you must destroy them totally. Make no treaty with them and show them no mercy." Deuteronomy 7:1-2, NIV.

"...do not leave alive anything that breaths. Completely destroy them...as the Lord your God has commanded you..." Deuteronomy 20:16, NIV.

These quotes seem to approve of brutally and without mercy exterminating a group of people.You're right...and it wasn't just approving...God was commanding them to do this very thing.

Now, there are some theological implications as to why this was so; but I won't get into them here (perhaps later), as they are subject to debate and would probably do more to confuse than to enlighten. :P

However, even though from our perspective this seems exceedingly harsh; in context of the culture of the time it makes perfect sense...for God was trying to protect His people in a couple of ways...Most importantly:

God knew that the Israelites (being people) would be more than just a little bit inclined to leave the worship of Him, and embrace the idolatry of the people in the land...Which would result in absolute disaster. If you read Exodus, the thing that jumps out is that even after all the supernatural miracles wrought on behalf of the Israelites...they kept wanting to worship idols. In fact, if you remember, while Moses was on the mountain...the Israelites were throwing a party around a golden Calf...having declared the Calf to be "god".

The history of the kindom of Israel bears that out: Because they did not "wipe out" the people in the lands they were given; they became increasingly apostate to the point that they ended up in Babylonian captivity, and suffered greatly through out their history because they turned their backs on God to embrace the idols and practices of the land...Under a series of "evil" kings who threw themselves into wholesale idolatry, indeed disaster came upon the nation.


When a man sells his daughter as a slave, she will not be freed at the end of six years as the men are. If she does not please the man who bought her, he may allow her to be bought back again. But he is not allowed to sell her to foreigners, since he is the one who broke the contract with her. And if the slave girl's owner arranges for her to marry his son, he may no longer treat her as a slave girl, but he must treat her as his daughter. If he himself marries her and then takes another wife, he may not reduce her food or clothing or fail to sleep with her as his wife. If he fails in any of these three ways, she may leave as a free woman without making any payment. (Exodus 21:7-11 NLT)

"....or fail to sleep with her as his wife," being the key phrase as "her" refers to the sold daughter for sexual purposes. This just seems gross and disgusting.No,This does not speak of selling ones daughter into slavery for the purpose of sex, but rather protects the woman. To wit: If the owner has intimate relations with her, he must marry her. Keep in mind that the culture of the time (universally through out that region, not just the Israelites) declared that women were property...period. In actuality, the Jewish women were treated a whole lot better than the gentile women...because of God's laws concerning their treatment.

When a man strikes his male or female slave with a rod so hard that the slave dies under his hand, he shall be punished. If, however, the slave survives for a day or two, he is not to be punished, since the slave is his own property. (Exodus 21:20-21 NAB)

This one advocates murdering slaves as long as it is not immediate....Once again this does not condone murder of a slave at all. In fact, the idea that a slave owner should or would be punished for the death of his slave was unique to Israel. In the rest of the world this wasn't the case...if one beat his slave to death...so what? After all the slave was his property, was he not? That was simply the way it was.

The key to understanding OT slavery is really quite simple: God is not so much condoning slavery as He was regulating the practice to make it "humane". Slavery was a cultural norm for all peoples, and God knew that His people couldn't (weren't ready to) give up the practice.

In fact if you read through Leviticus and Deuteronomy, you'll find that God's command to His people was that slaves would be well treated (by standards of the time)...real earth shattering stuff!!!

Slaves, obey your earthly masters with deep respect and fear. Serve them sincerely as you would serve Christ. (Ephesians 6:5 NLT)

advocating slavery again....Not at all.When this letter was written, slaves outnumbered Romans by about a five to one margin in the empire. One of Rome's biggest fears was another slave uprising in the manner of Spartacus some centuries earlier. If Paul had told slaves to resist or revolt in opposition to Roman law...Then Rome would have ruthlessly quelled any such uprising and Paul and the Churches would have been accused of sedition against the empire.

In fact, when Rome finally put down the slave revolt led by Spartacus, history records that the Appian way was lined with crosses on both sides all the way to the gates of Rome herself, bearing the bodies of those who had revolted.

In fact, Christianity was singularly responsible for the downfall of slavery world wide; and it started when Paul wrote to Philemon and told him to receive the run-away slave-turned-Christian Onesimus as a brother, and no longer as a slave.


"Behold, I will cast her into a bed, and them that commit adultery with her into great tribulation, except they repent of their deeds. And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I am he which searcheth the reins and hearts: and I will give unto every one of you according to your works." (Revelation 2:22-23)

This one says that if a woman commits adultery, then he will kill her children, which are completely innocent of the act.Has nothing to do with either women/children/physical adultery. This is prophetic language, using an analogy to give a picture as to what is going to happen quite soon.

Go back to the OT once again, and you will see where God likened His people who had gone after foreign gods as "adulterers" and the foreign gods themselves as a "harlot".

Here, he speaks of those who reject Jesus Christ and instead go after the pleasures of the world during the time of tribulation...i.e. those who "commit adultery" with "the great harlot"...

That's all the time I have right now...and I hope that it helped some. If you'd like...take one concern at a time and we can discuss it...works out a bit better that way.

unkerns
Dec 27th 2008, 03:28 AM
Hi, all.

I grew up in a Unitarian Universalist church, so I never really had a specific set of beliefs about my religion. I've been reading a lot about Christianity, lately. If the Bible really is true, that'd be quite awesome, but from reading it I am getting very mixed signals and am half the time disgusted :(

Can anyone provide a coherent explanation to these quotes please!!??


"When the Lord your God brings you into the land you are entering to possess and drives out before you may nations...then you must destroy them totally. Make no treaty with them and show them no mercy." Deuteronomy 7:1-2, NIV.

"...do not leave alive anything that breaths. Completely destroy them...as the Lord your God has commanded you..." Deuteronomy 20:16, NIV.

These quotes seem to approve of brutally and without mercy exterminating a group of people.

When a man sells his daughter as a slave, she will not be freed at the end of six years as the men are. If she does not please the man who bought her, he may allow her to be bought back again. But he is not allowed to sell her to foreigners, since he is the one who broke the contract with her. And if the slave girl's owner arranges for her to marry his son, he may no longer treat her as a slave girl, but he must treat her as his daughter. If he himself marries her and then takes another wife, he may not reduce her food or clothing or fail to sleep with her as his wife. If he fails in any of these three ways, she may leave as a free woman without making any payment. (Exodus 21:7-11 NLT)

"....or fail to sleep with her as his wife," being the key phrase as "her" refers to the sold daughter for sexual purposes. This just seems gross and disgusting.

When a man strikes his male or female slave with a rod so hard that the slave dies under his hand, he shall be punished. If, however, the slave survives for a day or two, he is not to be punished, since the slave is his own property. (Exodus 21:20-21 NAB)

This one advocates murdering slaves as long as it is not immediate....

Slaves, obey your earthly masters with deep respect and fear. Serve them sincerely as you would serve Christ. (Ephesians 6:5 NLT)

advocating slavery again....


"Behold, I will cast her into a bed, and them that commit adultery with her into great tribulation, except they repent of their deeds. And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I am he which searcheth the reins and hearts: and I will give unto every one of you according to your works." (Revelation 2:22-23)

This one says that if a woman commits adultery, then he will kill her children, which are completely innocent of the act.




So yeah, as a seeker of Christ I really ask for some well-thought-out answers, please! It is very troubling to me.

Thank you all very much!

1 - The Lord already knew the nations that the Israelites would encounter, to begin the custom was first for them to ask a peaceful solution hence the reason you always see them say may we just pass through and get things for our travels? The next things is that these nations were sacrificing their children to fire, having sex with all sorts of different women and men and family and children, worshiping idols, not to mention some were already attacking Israelites going for the weak and sick, now if they did engage battle those that were innocent would generally flee mostly women and children leaving only those most stubborn.

2 - Slavery was acceptable during those time, but with the israelites they were to be well treated

3 - I havent researched this one so I cant answer it

4 - This is the book of Revelation it is an apocolyptic book, so part of it is literal while part of it is symbolic, This who refers back to a woman in Kings who was a very horrible woman and so this scripture could stand for those that are pure evil, and then again it could mean something else. This book Is impossible for us to interpret.