re: did Moses disobey God in Deuteronomy 20?
- --- In email@example.com, "Robert M.
Bowman, Jr." <faithhasitsreasons@...> wrote:
>your original claim
> Your most recent post made no attempt to salvage
> that Moses had disobeyed God by allowing theMidianite virgins to live.
> Instead, you attempted to argue that the Pentateuchpresents God acting
> in contradictory or inconsistent ways.First, I was trying to show that, IF YOU ASSUME GOD IS
CONSISTENT, then the places where God acts
inconsistent should be attributed to human error, and
in the case of Moses, his own error of disobedience to
the full extermination order in Deuteronomy 20.
You then fail to appreciate your own belief that what
God said in Deuteronomy 20 comes from his unchanging
holy nature. Or maybe you think God isn't as mad at
idoloters as long as they stay far away from Israel?
Amorites who sacrifice kids on one side of the Jordan
river are no less offensive to God's moral
sensibilities than Amorites on the other side, are
> Unless you have something new to add on thissubject, I am declaring
> this particular discussion closed.If you are looking for new material to add to this
> In Christ's service,
> Rob Bowman
debate, I've got plenty.
Since I'm trying to build a case that Moses disobeyed
God by not killing everybody in a detestable nation,
let's start with whether Joshua's choice to spare
Rahab the harlot in the detestable city of Jericho
constitutes a disobedience to the order for full
extermination of corrupted people God gave Moses in
Perhaps if you can admit that Joshua's reason for
sparing Rahab was due solely to her helping them win
the battle against Jericho, and not because Joshua
felt she and the members of her household had more of
a chance of reforming her detestable ways than any
small child he massacred in Jericho, then you might
find Moses' sparing of Midianite virgins for reasons
stated nowhere in scripture to make his disobedience
toward God in that matter a viable possibility.
From Joshua 7:
speaking of how extensively Joshua destroyed Jericho:
21 And they utterly destroyed everything in the city,
both man and woman, young and old, and ox and sheep
and donkey, with the edge of the sword.
Why did Joshua find it necessary to kill everybody?
Probably because that's exactly what God wished to
happen to the cites of the nations he was giving them
for an inheritance, spoken of in Deuteronomy 20,
right? Jericho is one of the cities in the promised
land full of detestable people that pose a threat of
corrupting the new Israelite residents, right?
Again from Joshua 7:
25 However, Rahab the harlot and her father's
household and all she had, Joshua spared; and she has
lived in the midst of Israel to this day, for she hid
the messengers whom Joshua sent to spy out Jericho.
Why did Joshua spare one of these detestable people in
this detestable city? Because she helped Israel
succeed in attacking Jericho, no other reason is
Yet God was very specific about full extermination in
15 "Thus you shall do to all the cities that are very
far from you, which are not of the cities of these
16 "Only in the cities of these peoples that the LORD
your God is giving you as an inheritance, you shall
not leave alive anything that breathes.
17 "But you shall utterly destroy them, the Hittite
and the Amorite, the Canaanite and the Perizzite, the
Hivite and the Jebusite, as the LORD your God has
Jericho was a city among the nations in the land God
was giving them as an inheritance.
Their detestable ways can be confirmed not just from
Deuteronomy 20's broad-brushing claim, but from
Joshua's choice to kill everybody in that city.
Confirmation is found in modern scholarship, which
agrees that the people of Jericho in the days of
Joshua were your basic regular typical Canannites,
thus preeminently qualified for full extermination by
the exact words of Deuteronomy 20.
As such, his choice to spare even a single person in
any city of the nations in the land god was giving
them as an inheritance, constitutes a violation of
God's specific "leave nothing alive that breathes"
command concerning these exact cities.
When God says "leave nothing alive that breathes", we
probably should suggests exceptions to his rules,
> But your argument for this claimtreat all perverse
> is without substance, since you assume that God must
> peoples in the same way in order for him to beconsistent. That is a
> _non sequitur_, and therefore your argument fails.First, you have't explained why it's a non sequitur,
when it is far from obvious that it is. If a doctor
can completely excise cancers from two people, but
only does this for one person, choosing to remove only
half the cancer from the other, when in fact they are
the same type of cancer, I charge him with being
inconsistent. Is this a non-sequiter too?
Second, you have not adequately addressed the problem
of WHY Israel would completely exterminate SOME
"detestable" tribes and not others. If God wished to
kill every last Amorite in the promised land, because
they might entice Israel to mimic their ways, God
obviously isn't going to feel any better about the
same detestable Amorites outside the promised land.
Cancer is cancer is cancer. You don't just choose to
remove some of it, when you can remove all of it.
Otherwise you are inconsistent.
Third, you argued in part that the tribes in the
promised land needed full extermination because Israel
would start living there. Well Israel also lived in
various encampments near detestable peoples on their
way to the promised land. Will you split hairs and
argue that the question of whether to completely
exterminate a perverse people depends on exactly how
long Israel plans on being their next-door neighbors?
How long must Israel decide to camp, before it becomes
necessary to completely exterminate other tribes that
might corrupt them? 3 days? Several years? Again,
the mere fact that Israel was on the move and not
ultimately settled before they hit the promised land
doesn't suddenly mean God thinks the detestable sins
of the Amorites (or whoever) deserve less punishment.
Fourth, if you are so sure that these peoples engaged
in beastility, child sacrifice, etc, then God would be
just as angry at such nations for those violations of
his moral will whether they were 2000 miles or 2000
feet away from Israel. Their proximity to Israel is a
non-issue when God thinks their their ways violate His
absolute moral law, right?
Fifth, surely you realize that the inconsistency of
the Israelites applying their own laws in specific
situations is noted by scholars, not just internet
surfers? Yet you talk at me as if my position is
completely ridiculous. I'll accept that if you'll
just clarify that you also think anything that doesn't
support conservative evangelical Christian viewpoints
is thus "ridiculous".
Fussy? Opinionated? Impossible to please? Perfect. Join Yahoo!'s user panel and lay it on us. http://surveylink.yahoo.com/gmrs/yahoo_panel_invite.asp?a=7
You're manufacturing problems that don't exist. Obviously, the
author of the Book of Joshua saw no contradiction between the
general command to kill all the people and livestock in Jericho and
the exception to allow Rahab and her family to survive. He reports
both in the same immediate context. I don't see a contradiction here
either. You are turning a general policy into an inflexible one that
does not allow exceptions--and there's no good reason to do that
except to create an artificial basis for criticizing the account.
Rahab was spared because she showed faith in the LORD God by
acknowledging that he was the true God and by offering aid to the
Please, don't bother continuing along these lines. I doubt anyone
here takes this sort of hypercritical analysis seriously. I sure
In Christ's service,