A nonbeliever's SECOND reading of the Bible

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

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

The Semitic fertility god Dagon.  Public Domain.

Bad luck follows those who house the Ark of the Covenant (Chapter 5) - A series of unfortunate events followed the captors of the Israelites' Ark of the Covenant, first to the city of Ashdod. 

First, the Philistines lay the Ark next to a statue of Dagon, the Philistine fertility god.  The next morning, Dagon was facedown on the ground.  Thinking it was a coincidence, they set Dagon upright again and the next morning the statue was fallen again, only this time with its head and hands removed. 

Later, Yahweh (the Israelite god) became angry of the Philistines, "destroyed" many of them, and then smote the rest of them with hemorrhoids!!! 

The people of Ashdod then suggest that the statue be moved to the nearby city of Gath, and upon hearing this the people of Gath say, "Hell no, we don't want hemorrhoids!" 

This is a funny story, albeit a little disturbing.  Why would Yahweh be so upset about the Ark being in Philistine hands?  These days, He's always portrayed as being all powerful (and all-knowing), yet He seems unable to do much more than regional punishments.  On top of that, His punishments seem odd and unjust.  If a god is angry that some people stole the Ark that represents His covenant to some other Bronze Age tribe, why doesn't He just kill those responsible? Why kill and cause hemorrhoids to people who had absolutely nothing to do with it?  

More importantly, how did this happen in the first place?  We're talking about the Almighty, right?  I guess not yet.  Yahweh isn't Almighty yet.  That comes much later.

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