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


It’s been a while since I worked on this series. I’ll try to get back to doing it more regularly, but, since I’m back in school, no promises. So here is the rest of 2 Kings.
Where I left off, Jezebel was to be eaten by dogs. This seems to be a terrible punishment. Why would Yahweh choose something so gruesome? Jehu is then made king. He marches to conquer Ahab’s land and kill Ahab’s family. Jehu orders the messengers that are sent to him to ask if he is there peacefully (of course he’s not. The Bible isn’t exactly a book of peace) to join him, they do. Why would they be so willing to Join him? Jehu asks how there can be peace with all the witchcraft. What does witchcraft have to do with peace?
Jehu makes sure God’s prophecy about Ahab and Jezebel comes true. Jehu knew about the prophecy ahead of time and worked things out to happen as God said it would. That prophecy can’t really be said to be an accurate prophecy: we can’t say for sure whether it came true because God said it would or because Jehu made sure it would (provided it actually happened).
Jezebel puts on makeup to challenge Jehu. Why? She shouted at him out a window. Jehu says that she’s only to be buried because she is a kings daughter. So her only value as a person is based on who her father was. How incredibly sexist. Part of Ahab’s prophecy included the slaughter of his relatives, so 70 princes were slaughtered. Why did these princes deserve to be slaughtered? What had they done? Jehu is said to have killed all of Ahab’s family. Why all of them? What good did that do anyone? Why did they deserve to die?
Jehu then claims to be holding a sacrifice for Baal, but it is a trick to draw in Baal’s followers. He has them all killed. Were these all Israelites who were supposedly betraying God? Because I can kind of see Israelites wanting retribution from Israelites that they viewed as traitors. However, killing people seems like a terrible waste. And today we would call this a hate crime. Especially if they had never worshiped Yahweh. The place where they were killed was turned into a latrine. Lovely. I guess respect for others wasn’t something practiced in the ancient Middle East…
Jehu apparently didn’t turn away from the sins of Jeroboam. Is this still a useful claim? Did the peopleat this time even remember what Jeroboam’s crime was? He had been dead for quite a few generations already!
Jehoash was 7 when he became king. He did what was right in the eye of the Lord. What does that actually mean? Jehoash demanded that the temple be repaired, but the priests didn’t do so for many years. He finally had to force them to repair the temple.
The sins of Jeroboam continued. Whatever this means.
More people killing each other. Lovely.
Ahaziah is made king at 16.
Everybody seems to do evil in the eyes of God. One must wonder why he bothers with humans if he thinks everything we do is evil. God apparently afflicted Ahaziah with lepracy. Why?
Zachariah becomes king of Israel.
Shallum ruled for 1 month. He apparently led a cult of some sort. Why is he even mentioned? He didn’t do anything but lead a cult. And nothing is said of this cult. It’s just kind of mentioned.
Menahem took the throne. He attacked Tirzah and ripped open all the pregnant women. Sounds like a great guy…Why the pregnant women? What’s with all the murdering of innocent pregnant women?
The rulers of Judah live a lot longer than the rulers of Israel. I think that may be more a result of author bias that reality.
Menahem paid off the Assyrians to get them out of Israel. Ahaz, a later king, took apart the entrance to the temple to appease the Assyrians. So I guess they’re trying appeasement at this point. Why anybody ever expects this to work I’ll never know. The Israelite people were then taken to Assyria. While in Assyria, God sent lions to kill the people because they weren’t worshiping him. The Assyrian king had to teach the people how to worship their own god. How did they forget so easily and why did the Assyrian king know how to worship Yahweh? And why did God send lions? Why didn’t he just, you know, remind the people?
Hezekiah became king and took apart all the idols and defied the Assyrians. Hezekiah gave the gold from the temple to the Assyrians. Why? And, if the Israelites had been moved, how did he have access to the temple? Why hadn’t the Assyrians already sacked it?
The Israelites pray to God saying that the idols of the other nations were not gods but stone and wood. They say that only Yahweh is God. This is different than the types of things they said about those idols earlier. Before they spoke about them as if they had actual power. Now they speak in terms of Yahweh being the only god.
An angel killed 185,000 Assyrians because they were going to attack the Israelites.
Manasseh made the people do evil. How did he do this? And why? What was the evil?
God is angry because the people worship other gods. The king doesn’t suffer for it because he tore his clothes in God’s presence. The people had been worshiping other gods for many generations. Why is Yahweh only angry now? And what does tearing his clothes have to do with the worshiping of other gods?
The king (Josiah) got rid of the priests who worshiped gods other than Yahweh. Shouldn’t this make Yahweh happy and unwilling to kill his followers? Why didn’t any of the earlier kings do this?
The people were then attacked by the Babylonians. The bronze was removed from the temple to be taken to Babylon. The other precious metal was taken too. How is there even still a temple to loot?
The Babylonians put Gedaliah in charge of the Israelites.
This concludes 2 Kings. I was going to post another Mere Christianity review, but I think I’ll do that tomorrow.

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3 responses to “Why I Can’t Agree With the Bible: 2 Kings: Part 2

  • Paddastoel

    This is a thought-provoking series.

    The main reason why infants and / or pregnant women were killed was to extinguish a particular line.

    The aim was to kill the baby boys so they won’t be able to take revenge / be a threat later on. This practice occurs a lot in nature as well when lions kill the cubs of their predecessor in order to further their own line’s chances, especially in times of limited resources. As abominable as we may think it is, it is very practical as well.

    The other reason may relate to God’s commandments that men go forth and multiply, but this is a bit sketchier.

    Like

  • christineh90

    The Old Testament was to show that people cannot be righteous and good without Jesus.
    The Bible is full of types and shadows, and showing that mankind is lost with God.
    God seemed very violent in the Old Testament, because He demands perfection from us. But no one is perfect, except for God. which is the point of sending Jesus, His son.

    Like

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