A nonbeliever's SECOND reading of the Bible

A nonbeliever's SECOND reading of the Bible
Hunc tu caveto.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Samson slays a Philistine with the jawbone of an ass.

Samson the Superhero (Judges 15) - Imagine if, after being married, your spouse's father suddenly thought that you didn't love his child enough, and instead GIVES them to another person.  What would you do? Of course, you'd probably be angry, but there is a litany of possible things that you could do.  You could reason with him.  You could find the person who now owns your husband/wife and get them back.  There's all sorts of options.

In fact, Samson illustrates this by doing the least expected thing.  He catches 300 foxes, ties them up by their tail, and lights them on fire in the Philistines' cornfield.

The Philistines, puzzled, figure out it's Samson and that he did it because of the weird dispute between him and his father-in-law, over Samson's wife.  What do the Philistines do?  In response, perhaps just as unreasonable as Samson, they light afire both Samson's wife and father-in-law.
Samson gets into such a rage he slaughters a bunch of Philistines, presumably the ones responsible, and then retreats to some rock or a hill.  Then 3,000 men from Judah come to bind him and bring him to the Philistines, so the Philistines won't attack Judah.

When they transport Samson to the Philistines, the Philistines begin to shout at Samson angrily.  Then "the spirit of the Lord comes upon Samson", who grabs a nearby donkey jawbone, and proceeds to slay a thousand men.   I'm starting to think that when "the spirit of the Lord comes upon someone", that's just an Old Testament euphemism for getting into a rage.

Anyways, after the bloodfest, God is happy with Samson's behavior and rewards him with water, found in the hollow of the jawbone.  I'd be thirsty too after killing 1,000 men with a jawbone!!!  

Perhaps the scariest part of this story is that today, perhaps 3,000 years later, people still believe this story is literally true only because it can be found in the Bible.

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