Why didn't God also reveal himself to the Canaanites just as he did to Moses in the burning bush?

by deegee 34 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • deegee

    Why didn't God also reveal himself to the Canaanites just as he did to Moses in the burning bush so that the massacre/genocide of the Canaanites could have been avoided?

    Why didn't God also invite the native Palestinians into his covenant, giving them the same laws he gave the Israelites, and establish an egalitarian society where people of all races could live together in harmony?

    Instead, he ordered his people to invade and slaughter the natives, killing them to the last man, woman and child, specifically instructing them to show no mercy to anyone under any circumstances. What followed was a series of terrible, bloody battles in which tens of thousands of people died violently. Finally, God pronounced his campaign of genocide a success (Joshua 11:15).

  • Dis-Member

    Because apparently they were not fully human.. but inbred monsters.

    From Wikipedia:

    Anak is a figure in the Hebrew Bible in the conquest of Canaan by the Israelites who, according to the Book of Numbers, was a forefather of the Anakim (Heb. Anakim) who have been considered "strong and tall," they were also said to have been a mixed race of giant people, descendants of the Nephilim (Numbers 13:33). The use of the word "nephilim" in this verse describes a crossbreed of God's sons and the daughters of man, as cited in (Genesis 6:1-2) and (Genesis 6:4). The text states that Anak was a Rephaite (Deuteronomy 2:11) and a son of Arba (Joshua 15:13). Etymologically, Anak means long neck.

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  • jws

    Because Jehovah was one of many gods in the ancient Semitic religion. And each god had a nation. Jehovah's was Israel. His brothers ruled other nations.

    So it was probably a pissing match between Jehovah and his brothers.

  • Fisherman


    Jewish tradition holds that God offered His Law to all of the Nations first and they rejected it and lastly to Israel - and they ran with it.


    Why didn't God also reveal himself to the Canaanites just as he did to Moses in the burning bush?

    He could have changed it up a bit..

    Maybe come back as a Burning Oil Barrel..


    "Thou Shalt Have..

    No Other Gods Before Me!"..

    Image result for burning garbage can

  • David_Jay
    Why didn't God also reveal himself to the Canaanites just as he did to Moses in the burning bush so that the massacre/genocide of the Canaanites could have been avoided?

    If you're reading the Bible as the Jehovah's Witnesses tell you, this is how you interpret the story. If you're a human being who knows they can just check history and, guess what, ask the Jews what really happened, you get a different view. (Oddly enough, people rarely ask Jewish people and Jewish scholars about their take on things. It's as if the story of the Jews can only be truly interpreted by Gentile Christians, and all you hear from Jews is tantamount to rubbish--especially for those who subscribe to the literalist Bible formula like JWs).

    The Hebrew Scriptures contain the liturgical narratives of the Exodus of the Jews from Egypt. A Jewish liturgical reading is designed to give you an overly dramatized version and reflection of history, purposefully taking liberty with the facts (and sometimes even the text itself) in order to present a moral lesson. They are assigned to be read in public worship on a certain day of the year, often to highlight a certain holy day or event that occurs on the annual Jewish calendar.

    As such, what you are reading isn't detailed with facts. It's detailed with the kind of things you expect to find in Aesop's fables or even the parables of Jesus. You aren't supposed to read these things literally like the Governing Body in its ignorance tells people to. This isn't the way it really happened in history.

    As most Jews and Jewish study Bibles (including most Catholic and Protestant ones) will tell you, these narratives are not about the genocide of the Canaanites, but of the assimilation of these people with the Hebrews. Several groups of peoples, including the Hebrews, were apparently among the slaves that left Egypt (some historians theorize there were three waves to the Exodus, with the Hebrews leaving in the final one). These slaves apparently became one group, adopted one God to lead them all (possibly the God that Jethro, the priest of Midian worshipped, of whom Moses learned about while living with and working for him), and they brought their religion into the Fertile Crescent and the peoples who lived there.

    The stories of the Jews "conquering" these heathens and their false deities are mostly just that, stories. They are narrative devices that explain in a religious way what happened when the Hebrew entered their Promised Land. As DNA, archeological evidence, and even non-Biblical Jewish history will prove, we Jews actually merged and intermarried with these people. The result is that all us became the nation of Israel, under the one God concept from the regions of Sinai (likely the same God-concept Abraham also adopted when traveling in this area so many generations before).

    The stories that 'every man, woman, and child' of these heathens and their idol religions were 'destroyed' are more fiction than history. It's a liturgical way of saying: "The people of Canaan became like us, adopted our God, and therefore all traces of the previous world was wiped away by the merging process." Because in a sense the reality is that the monotheistic God "conquered" the land, and the previous religion of the people and the adherents of these false gods gradually disappeared, it got dramatized into the liturgy as you are reading it.

    Liturgy changes the story according to the precise need of the story and the worship setting. For instance, if you go to a Passover Seder, you will note that Jews read the Exodus story during the meal from a book called the Haggadah and not from the book of Exodus. In the Haggadah the Exodus story reads a bit differently from that in Exodus, and Moses is not even mentioned! In the Haggadah it is God who does all the wonderful things, and Moses is nowhere to be found.

    History is different from liturgy. And so is doctrine. Our doctrine, which shaped the book of Exodus and the Haggadah, comes from the oral transmission that later got written down in the Mishnah. The Witnesses are having you read the "parable" version of our stories, where as the theology is in a different book. If you read Jesus' parables as history and fact, you will miss the point of the moral lessons these illustrations provide, correct? Where do you think Jesus, a Jew, got this trait of teaching in parables? It's a Jewish thing. The Hebrew Scriptures are filled with it, including this narrative.

    This is not to say that the Jews never had an army and may or may not have committed atrocities in the name of God. But it should help you see that you need to let go of everything you have ever learned from the Witnesses about Scripture before coming to your conclusions. It's your choice to keep looking at the Bible the way Jehovah's Witnesses told you to, or the way a fair and critical approach offers.You may not get complete answers either way, but a rational and critical approach will at least give you far more evidence to consider.

  • deegee

    Thanks for your comment David_Jay.

    It is certainly an interesting Jewish perspective.

    I don't mean to be offensive, but am wondering, given your explanation above, why has there been this ongoing land grab in the "Promised Land" since 1948 and attendant/associated death of the native Palestinians if the "Promised Land" story is just a parable or liturgy, which should not be taken literally as you claim?

    It seems to me that God needs to remind the Jewish people that they should not be taking the "Promised Land" story literally given that it's all just parable and liturgy as you have stated, so that the land grab and associated deaths will cease and some measure of peace returned to the Middle East.


  • schnell

    I seriously came here for David_Jay's comment, and to recommend The Bible Unearthed if you haven't read it.

    But yeah. Even in the JW or Christian fundamentalist understanding of the Hebrew scriptures, you raise great questions about God's character. Keep doing that.

  • Crazyguy

    Because it was a made up story and no exodus from Egypt happen like what is written in the Bible and the Israelites didn't invade Palistine and kill and conquer a bunch of people it was just the authors delusional story.

  • OnTheWayOut

    I like Crazyguy's short version. But to add a thought to David_Jay's comments- there was a time when Jews assumed the stories were literal. But as time went by, as more was shown to be just stories, there came to be thoughts that these stories were allegories, fables.

    They still mostly believe that much of it is literal.

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