Joshua 16: Why The Canaanites Were (Almost) Wiped Out

The Canaanites were supposed to be destroyed, right? Like, all of them, gone. Isn’t that what God said? If so, why have I read the following two passages in the last two chapters:  But the people of Judah could not drive out the Jebusites, the inhabitants of Jerusalem; so the Jebusites live with the people of … Continue reading

Deuteronomy 23: Why Some Laws Are Worth Keeping

Reading through Deuteronomy can make you react in all kinds of fun ways. In chapter 23, you stumble across this law: “No one whose testicles are crushed or whose penis is cut off shall be admitted to the assembly of the Lord.” and think WHAAAA?! But then you keep reading and you find “With your utensils … Continue reading

Deuteronomy 20: Join The Army!

I'm going to Army, Mother!

Welcome, recruits! This is your first day of boot camp for the Army of Israel!

I need you to listen and listen good, because I am only going to say this stuff once. There are several things that you need to know before we begin our training.

The first thing that you must always remember is that we don’t need you. 

This Army’s strength does not lie in its numbers or in the ferocity of its warriors. And given the looks of all of you, I’m glad about that!

This army is strong because the LORD fights for it. Plain and simple. God is the best soldier we have. So you can rid yourself of any delusions of grandeur. You will never be as good a fighter as he is. It’s as simple as that.

You will never part a sea and destroy Egypt’s army as you bring it back together. Never.

We don’t need you. 

And to prove it, I’m going to let a few of you go.

You are not being cut. And it is not because I don’t think you can handle it. We just don’t need you.

Do any of you have houses that have not been dedicated? You should go home and dedicate them. Otherwise someone else might do it.

Do any of you have vineyards? Have you tasted the fruit of those vineyards yet? No? Go home and eat those grapes, soldier! You don’t want someone else getting your first fruits!

Are any of you engaged? Go home and marry that girl! I know that you don’t want someone else marrying her!

Seriously. Go. Enjoy your life.

All you who are still here, I have one question for you: Are you afraid?

If so, you also may go. We don’t need you. This country has had its share of scared people making the rest of the people scarred. So if you are afraid of this battle, you may go.

Cities Far and Near

We are marching to a town that is far away. Our first course of action will not be to attack. So put your swords away! We will come to them and offer peace. If they accept, they will become our slaves, in which case all of our laws of slavery will apply. Remember them?

If they do not accept our peace, you may unsheathe your swords and only kill the men. Leave everyone else. They will come with us when we conquer them.

However, to the cities and peoples who are near to us, we must now show the same mercy. They are to be destroyed. All of them. Every single one.

Do I make myself clear? Yes? Good.

Welcome to the Army.

Deuteronomy 15: Why Your Attitude Matters

Does it surprise anyone else that God would create a system he knows can be abused? That he would create laws that are dependent not only on peoples’ obedience, but aligning their internal value system to reflect the spirit of those laws? It surprises me. Maybe it has been there the whole time and I … Continue reading

Numbers 31: The Cursers Get Cursed

Remember that incident with Midian a little ways back? Well, let’s say that some guys from Israel engaged in some inappropriate hanky-panky with some women from Midian resulting in some rather unfortunate idolatry which resulted in a plague that killed 24,000 people. And do you remember how during that time there were a lot of … Continue reading