Genealogies in the Bible.

Abrahamic religion, you know, the one with the cross...

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Re: Genealogies in the Bible.

#41  Postby Zwaarddijk » Jun 16, 2011 7:34 am

Lion IRC wrote:
Gerontology: mechanisms of aging. Look it up. We do not die of old age. How many free radicals do you think Methuselah had going on in his body? You think they had heaps of pesticides and herbicides in the food chain back then? Mobile phones, microwave ovens, mortgage distress? crime rates out of control? post modernist depression? uncertainty principles and chaos theories and not even one day a week to stop and rest and maybe pray/meditate?

Uhm, why wouldn't, say Methuselah be worried about crime rates out of control? Read your Bible and you'll notice it was so bad back then, even God himself worried, and decided to (almost) put an end to it!

Free radicals are not a modern invention (and in fact are necessary for lots of biological processes ...), most people never need to bother with chaos theory and uncertainty principles, ... microwave ovens don't leak radiation (the microwaves, in fact, can be pretty accurately pinpointed, and you could make a hole in the top of it with the circumference of an average *cup*, and if you've calculated correctly, no waves will leak even then!), nor does the electromagnetic waves leave any unhealthy traces per se in the foods... so much bullshit you're spouting to make it seem like the world is degenerating - murder is quite probably at an all time low (or at least not far from it) right now!
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Re: Genealogies in the Bible.

#42  Postby Sankari » Jun 16, 2011 7:53 am

Agrippina wrote:And people are thrilled to call the cheater a folk hero?


Why not? The cheater/trickster character is a folk hero in many (most?) myths and legends. It's a classic archetype. In any case, Jacob gets his comeuppance in a neat little twist when he starts working for Laban and finds himself tricked several times by his unscrupulous boss. It's a nice bit of poetic justice which leads to a permanent character change. So there's a moral dimension to the tale as well.

Animavore wrote:And how cutting off foreskin makes a 'covenant' with God and why Abraham didn't even question. "Abraham, you may lop the end of your penis off and those of your household and your children and all generations hence to create a covenant with me. Sort of like a friendship bracelet. I really small and fleshy friendship bracelet."
"Ok, God. No problem. I love you. Bye-bye :teef: "


Ritual circumcision already existed as a rite of passage among the cultures of the ANE. The Jews simply added new significance by adopting it as a covenant ritual. The foreskin was probably regarded as an irrelevant and unnecessary piece of flesh, rather like the appendix.

Deuteronomy 10:16 implies that circumcision represented the removal of obstructions to spiritual growth. Bear in mind that this was an era in which people actually believed that major organs were the primary source of thoughts and emotions. Except the brain, ironically.
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Re: Genealogies in the Bible.

#43  Postby Agrippina » Jun 16, 2011 8:12 am

Sankari wrote:
Agrippina wrote:And people are thrilled to call the cheater a folk hero?


Why not? The cheater/trickster character is a folk hero in many (most?) myths and legends. It's a classic archetype. In any case, Jacob gets his comeuppance in a neat little twist when he starts working for Laban and finds himself tricked several times by his unscrupulous boss. It's a nice bit of poetic justice which leads to a permanent character change. So there's a moral dimension to the tale as well.

Good point.
Although I do think if we're going to preach morality and hold up the observance of honesty laws blah blah to believers, we'd want the people we use as examples to be exemplary people, not people who sell their sister/wives for wealth, or who send their women to face danger while they cringe in the background when they have to face the brother who they cheated out of his inheritance and who, in my opinion, is a far honourable person than the one who did the stealing.

But the poetic justice is good.

Animavore wrote:And how cutting off foreskin makes a 'covenant' with God and why Abraham didn't even question. "Abraham, you may lop the end of your penis off and those of your household and your children and all generations hence to create a covenant with me. Sort of like a friendship bracelet. I really small and fleshy friendship bracelet."
"Ok, God. No problem. I love you. Bye-bye :teef: "


Ritual circumcision already existed as a rite of passage among the cultures of the ANE. The Jews simply added new significance by adopting it as a covenant ritual. The foreskin was probably regarded as an irrelevant and unnecessary piece of flesh, rather like the appendix.

Deuteronomy 10:16 implies that circumcision represented the removal of obstructions to spiritual growth. Bear in mind that this was an era in which people actually believed that major organs were the primary source of thoughts and emotions. Except the brain, ironically.[/quote]

True.
And besides the Egyptians were circumcising long before the jews were, so Moses would have already been circumcised and known about it before the big hullabaloo when he gets his son circumcised because of burning bushes ordering him to do it.

On the Methuselah age thing,let's put it into perspective.
Imagine some old codger who was there when William invaded England, now being around to watch the present family of rulers. This is what Lion wants us to believe, that it's possible that someone actually lived for almost 1000 years. Sheesh could you just think of how that pile of rotting flesh stank. :yuk: :yuk:
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Re: Genealogies in the Bible.

#44  Postby Animavore » Jun 16, 2011 8:17 am

@ Sankari

Yeah. That's true. We still talk about things 'coming from the heart' for that reason.
Anyway, it's just more examples of the chopping (pardon the pun) and changing the Jews were up to as their religion evolved.

I'm reading Karen Armstrong's A History of God along side this. It's quite an eye-opener.
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Re: Genealogies in the Bible.

#45  Postby quisquose » Jun 16, 2011 8:25 am

Richard Herring on the genealogy of Matthew 1.

One of the funniest things ever ... genius.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VFm_BAGKWs4[/youtube]

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Re: Genealogies in the Bible.

#46  Postby Sankari » Jun 16, 2011 9:51 am

Agrippina wrote:Good point.
Although I do think if we're going to preach morality and hold up the observance of honesty laws blah blah to believers, we'd want the people we use as examples to be exemplary people, not people who sell their sister/wives for wealth, or who send their women to face danger while they cringe in the background when they have to face the brother who they cheated out of his inheritance and who, in my opinion, is a far honourable person than the one who did the stealing.

But the poetic justice is good.


I don't think the Jews were expected to view Jacob as a pillar of virtue. Unlike most legendary characters of the era, he is presented as a regular person with many flaws and few redeeming features, who gradually matures over time. This is a very realistic portrayal, and I find it rather refreshing.
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Re: Genealogies in the Bible.

#47  Postby rJD » Jun 16, 2011 10:16 am

Just going back to the original oral delivery of these texts, I wonder how they sounded? Other ancient works have similar sections of recitation (I'm thinking particularly of the shiplists in Homer), so perhaps they had a musical or hypnotic quality, quite aside from any content?
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Re: Genealogies in the Bible.

#48  Postby Animavore » Jun 16, 2011 10:41 am

Jacob certainly matures and has many foibles of his own. Though the story of Joseph going to Eygpt and divining dreams for the Eygptian Pharoh and being made a ruler is a bit of a tall tale.
The book reads like a HBO series, or even more appropriately like that old Michael J Fox film, The Secret to My Success, all the little creeping around and shady goings on.
It's a very human book. It seems superfluous to claim divine inspiration. In fact, God only appears to prompt the story along for most of it. Mostly telling people that it's no longer safe here and it's time to leave :eh:
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Re: Genealogies in the Bible.

#49  Postby Sankari » Jun 16, 2011 10:59 am

Animavore wrote:In fact, God only appears to prompt the story along for most of it. Mostly telling people that it's no longer safe here and it's time to leave :eh:


:D

I imagine God as a frustrated stage manager, standing in the wings and berating the actors:

"Pssst! OK dude, you're off. Good work out there. What? No, I meant the stage. Get off it. This is NOT a curtain call, you're supposed to be leaving. Look I'm not going to argue, I'm simply telling you to get off the stage. OH FOR CRYING OUT LOUD, IT'S A SCENE CHANGE AND 30,000 AMALEKITES WILL BE HERE IN 5 MINUTES, NOW JUST GET OFF THE STAGE, YOU HALFWIT! Honestly, why do I have to work with these AMATEURS...?"

:lol:
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Re: Genealogies in the Bible.

#50  Postby Animavore » Jun 16, 2011 11:18 am

It didn't help that they kept standing on people's toes every where they went. God must've been at his wit's end.
'Abraham! Wake up!'
'What is it Lord?'
'Those feckin' eejit sons of yours just slaughtered a whole city.'
' :picard: '
'C'mon. Get out of here before their country men find out.'

Anyway. Exodus next. If I see another genealogy I'll scream.
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Re: Genealogies in the Bible.

#51  Postby Sankari » Jun 16, 2011 11:34 am

Animavore wrote:Anyway. Exodus next. If I see another genealogy I'll scream.


You'll get a break for a while. Exodus is a Biblical remake of Cecil B. DeMille's The Ten Commandments.

Or is it the other way around... :ask:
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Re: Genealogies in the Bible.

#52  Postby Agrippina » Jun 16, 2011 1:23 pm

Another problem I have with the whole thing and the terrible things that happen to them, how come the omni-everything God didn't tell them to watch out. You'd think he'd have known about us, in advance. He could've said to them, "write it all down properly in a way that those stupid 21st century people will understand, and BTW, there will be really good beer, one day!"
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Re: Genealogies in the Bible.

#53  Postby Animavore » Jun 16, 2011 1:40 pm

But they're only problems if you believe in this deity.
If it's just a book written by evolved apes living in a demon haunted world trying to make sense of things it makes sense that they would write something like this.

They thought babies were caused by god "opening the womb".
Rainbows were a sign.
There was something in dreams to interpret.
etc...

Asking why god didn't do this or say that is moot. The only questions I'm asking are more like, What do they mean by this? What's the story behind that? Who is this written for? etc...
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Re: Genealogies in the Bible.

#54  Postby Agrippina » Jun 16, 2011 1:44 pm

I started out with the attitude of "a load of nonsense" and then after a few pages, I started asking the same questions, and then couldn't avoid reading more and finding out more. We'll have some interesting discussions in about a month from now.
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Re: Genealogies in the Bible.

#55  Postby rJD » Jun 16, 2011 1:51 pm

Animavore wrote:But they're only problems if you believe in this deity.

& also, the deity as currently followed, since the Hebrew notion of their god changed over time. The god portrayed in Genesis is not the same figure portrayed in Daniel. The OT is a collection of books, not really an integrated work at all.
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Re: Genealogies in the Bible.

#56  Postby Sankari » Jun 16, 2011 2:20 pm

Animavore wrote:The only questions I'm asking are more like, What do they mean by this? What's the story behind that? Who is this written for? etc...


Agrippina wrote:I started out with the attitude of "a load of nonsense" and then after a few pages, I started asking the same questions, and then couldn't avoid reading more and finding out more. We'll have some interesting discussions in about a month from now.


This is where Biblical studies actually become relevant, and surprisingly helpful. I wouldn't touch the usual fundamentalist rubbish, but you can find some excellent material in the works of professional theologians.

I've been impressed by An Old Testament Theology: An Exegetical, Canonical, and Thematic Approach (Waltke, B. K. & Yu, C. 2007, Zondervan: Grand Rapids, Michigan). Waltke's discussion of the Genesis creation myth and its relation to contemporary accounts is particularly good.
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Re: Genealogies in the Bible.

#57  Postby NamelessFaceless » Jun 16, 2011 2:43 pm

Sankari wrote:
Animavore wrote:In fact, God only appears to prompt the story along for most of it. Mostly telling people that it's no longer safe here and it's time to leave :eh:


:D

I imagine God as a frustrated stage manager, standing in the wings and berating the actors:

"Pssst! OK dude, you're off. Good work out there. What? No, I meant the stage. Get off it. This is NOT a curtain call, you're supposed to be leaving. Look I'm not going to argue, I'm simply telling you to get off the stage. OH FOR CRYING OUT LOUD, IT'S A SCENE CHANGE AND 30,000 AMALEKITES WILL BE HERE IN 5 MINUTES, NOW JUST GET OFF THE STAGE, YOU HALFWIT! Honestly, why do I have to work with these AMATEURS...?"

:lol:


:lol: In Exodus he actually starts threatening to kill those "stiff-necked people."

Exodus 32:9-10:
32:9 And the LORD said unto Moses, I have seen this people, and, behold, it is a stiffnecked people:
32:10 Now therefore let me alone, that my wrath may wax hot against them, and that I may consume them: and I will make of thee a great nation.
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Re: Genealogies in the Bible.

#58  Postby Sankari » Jun 16, 2011 3:29 pm

Makes sense; a stiff neck is easier to cut. Moral of the story: keep your head down, and God won't notice you.

:angel:
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Re: Genealogies in the Bible.

#59  Postby Fortigurn » Jun 16, 2011 3:39 pm

magikrooster wrote:There may be other reasons too for a society like the hebrews. Consider if you were a levite (or another line that laid claim to the priesthood). You and your kin had special access to god, as priests. Quite a powerful thing to have.


They didn't have special access to God. They had no more access to God than anyone else did. They did have to fetch and carry a lot though.

Agrippina wrote:True, I'd forgotten about that, definite advantages to being of the clan of the people who get a free ride.


They didn't get a free ride, and they had work to do for other people.

Animavore wrote:If it's just a book written by evolved apes living in a demon haunted world trying to make sense of things it makes sense that they would write something like this.


But the Hebrews didn't live in a demon haunted world; their neighbours did, but they had no concept of supernatural evil beings.

Animavore wrote:They thought babies were caused by god "opening the womb".


No, they thought God could make people barren or bear; significant difference there.
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Re: Genealogies in the Bible.

#60  Postby rJD » Jun 16, 2011 3:45 pm

Fortigurn wrote:They didn't have special access to God. They had no more access to God than anyone else did.

Leaving aside the point that, as an atheist I agree that they didn't have access to god since he doesn't actually exist, they certainly did believe they had special access to god because they controlled the temple. There was a strict hierarchy about who was allowed to approach which elements of the temple, based on supposed ritual cleanliness.
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