Why I Can’t Agree With the Bible: Exodus: Part 2

I left off last time before Moses got to Egypt. This time I will discuss Moses’s time in Egypt and the Israelites escape.
Moses and Aaron go to Pharaoh initially to ask him to allow the Israelites to go into the woods to hold a festival. Why would Pharaoh need to let the Israelites go just so they can hold a festival? It seems odd that Moses would ask for their freedom. Why not just ask to take the slaves for a few days to hold a festival?
Moses is told beforehand that his request will be denied. God says that he will harden Pharaoh’s heart. Since God hardens Pharaoh’s heart, does that meant that God is responsible for the Israelites being made to work harder and getting beaten? After all, if God didn’t harden Pharaoh’s heart, then they may have been released. Why does God need to prove that he has a mighty hand by making Moses’s task harder?
At one point, the story stops and there is a genealogy given, then the story continues. What is the point of the genealogy in the middle of the Moses story?
At one point God says that Moses is like god in Pharaoh’s heart, but that doesn’t seem to be true at all. And why does God want Moses to be viewed as a god? Doesn’t that make him jealous?
Moses seems to have a competition with the Pharaoh’s priests. How did Pharaoh’s priests manage to turn their staffs into snakes? Did God turn them into snakes? Or did the Egyptian gods exist to turn the sticks into snakes? Or was it simply because the Egyptian priest’s were magicians and were able to do the tricks themselves? Doesn’t that suggest that God isn’t really more powerful than a human mage? What’s the point of sending Moses to Pharaoh when Pharaoh can’t change his mind? Why is God willing to prevent Pharaoh from exercising his freewill? This whole story seems to be immoral and contradictory. It seems to go against much of what is taught in church.
The way the Egyptians are portrayed seems to defy history. The Egyptians had their own gods, so why did they refer to the Israelite God as “God”? Pharaoh uses phrases that don’t make sense. He wouldn’t say “the lord your God,” because he wouldn’t consider that god his lord, or even a lord. He also says “I have sinned.” Unless the Egyptian religion believes in sins and they believe that going against another group’s god constitutes a sin, Pharaoh would not consider himself to have sinned. The Bible writes about the Egyptians as if the Egyptians share the beliefs of the Israelites, but we know that this isn’t true.
God goes out of the way to destroy the land of Egypt. He says that he spares the Israelites stuff, but they’re slaves. Can’t the Egyptians just take the things from them? Doesn’t ruing the land of Egypt also hurt the Israelites?
At one point, Pharaoh tells Moses that the Israelites can have their festival within the city. But Moses says no. Why would the Israelite sacrifices grotesque the Egyptians? Why would the Egyptians stone the Israelites for doing something that Pharaoh said they could?
There is more lying on the part of the people who are supposed to be God’s chosen. Why are Moses and Aaron asking for the Israelites to be free to perform sacrifices when they really want to free the Egyptians to take them to a new home? And why does God tell them to say this? How can anyone tell children that lying is wrong when they ae teaching these stories to children which clearly offer examples of cases where lying is perfectly acceptable?
When the gnats attack, we are told that the Israelite land is untouched. If the Israelites are slaves, why do they have their own land?
At one point, Moses tells Pharaoh that he knows that Pharaoh doesn’t fear God. How does Moses know that Pharaoh doesn’t fear God? Doesn’t Pharaoh wonder why he can’t let the Israelites go? If I were in Pharaoh’s position, I’d be afraid.
Throughout the entire story it seems like God is fighting himself. He’s forcing Pharaoh’s hand and then punishing Pharaoh for the actions that Pharaoh had no choice in performing. He’s basically playing chess against himself.
God later says that he has made the Egyptians like the Israelites. Why would the Egyptians like the Israelites after all the problems that they have caused?
The bit about the Passover is also confusing. Why does God care so much about how the Israelites eat the lambs? Why does he care so much about the yeast? These are such minor details. Shouldn’t they be irrelevant?
At one point we are told how long the Israelites were in Egypt. Why did God allow the Israelites to stay in Egypt for 430 years? How much of that were they slaves for? Why does it take God so long to make good on his promise to Abraham? These all seem like important details to the overall story, but they are barely even mentioned.
While the Israelites are escaping, it says that God kept vigil. This is more evidence that this God is not omniscient or omnipresent.
The Passover meal can only be eaten by the Israelites and those non-Israelites who have circumcised their male household. This is made very clear. But Christians celebrate Passover, and they have no rule about circumcision. Why is this allowed?
So the Israelites are supposed to sacrifice the first born males of their livestock to represent how God freed them from Egypt with his mighty hand despite Pharaoh’s stubbornness. But Pharaoh was only stubborn because God made him stubborn. The Israelites are supposed to consider their own first born sons as “for God,” as sacrifices that don’t have to be sacrificed, because God killed the first born males of Egypt. And God killed the first borns of Egypt because of Pharaoh’s stubbornness. But Pharaoh was only stubborn because God made him stubborn. So what are the Israelites actually celebrating? An unnecessary event?
When the Israelites are finally allowed to escape, Moses makes sure that Joseph’s bones are taken with the Israelites. How could there be any bones for Moses to take? Joseph was buried over 300 years ago. Was he mummified?
Why are we only learning about an angle travelling with the Israelites while God is parting the Red sea? Isn’t that worth mentioning? None of the angles up to this point have been named. Where do their names come from?
Why would the Israelites put their trust in someone they fear? Why does God want to be feared?
The Israelites sing “Who among the gods is like you lord?” So there are other gods.
Mariam is a prophet? Why don’t we learn more about her then? Aren’t the prophets kind of important to the religion?
Why does God still have to test the Israelites? Why does he still not know if they’ll follow his instructions?
A lot of these questions only matter if you take this story as based on a real event. But many of the questions also have to do with morality. Why follow a story as a moral guide if it’s not moral?

One response to “Why I Can’t Agree With the Bible: Exodus: Part 2

  • magdahe

    “Why does God need to prove that he has a mighty hand by making Moses’s task harder?” Because the God of the Bible is an abusive monster with a fragile ego. What other explanation could there be?


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