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What events in the Bible mean to me

Posted by hyperfocus on November 17, 2011, at 23:44:35

I have never looked at the Bible as a book dictating opinions on or proscribing action towards any race or country or religion. Most of the people who read the Bible today are not descended from the ancient peoples whose beliefs and history it records. I didn't start reading the Bible because I trace my ancestry back to the ancient Israelites. I see in the Old Testament people and events and stories containing powerful archetypes and universal themes on good vs. evil; words of wisdom and comfort and inspiration and hope that endure for thousands of years in all parts of the world.

I don't think that narratives like Exodus are pejorative against Egyptians or any peoples that were in opposition to God's people. The idea of a righteous people freed from their oppression by their God and Him crushing a vastly superior military force on their behalf, is a powerful one that resonates within people in all places and all times and will never disappear. The condemnation of the followers of Ba'al or Moloch - those who 'carry their god in their hand' or make meaningless horrible sacrifices of children to call down blessings and make atonement for their evil deeds - resonates with many people today as so much of what is important in the world is so trivial. It is not the peoples themselves who call down judgement and condemnation and destruction by God. It is their actions that leads to their fate. I don't think it makes sense for descendants of the ancient Egyptians or Babylonians or Philistines or Ammomites or Moabites or Caananites to claim that the Old Testament is not historically true and defames these peoples.

This how I look at the New Testament as well. You can debate the historicity of the events of the NT including the relationship of Jesus to the Jews of that time as related by the Gospels, just as you can debate the historicity of Moses delivering the Israelites from the oppression of Egypt, or of Noah and The Ark and The Great Flood, or whether any person
named Moses or Noah actually existed. The Gospels and later NT writings are not to me a commentary on or a condemnation of Judaism. The idea that the person who offers salvation to his people and is despised and condemned and made to suffer a horrible death by them is just one idea out of many in the NT I find compelling. This concept of making atonement through sacrifice is a major theme of both books of the Bible and is found in many book of the OT. I don't think it makes sense to contend that events in the New Testament defame Jews, just as it does not make sense to contend that the Old Testament defames ancient peoples who opposed Israel.

If anyone one can elaborate why this reasoning is wrong I'd appreciate it.

C-PTSD: social phobia, major depression, dissociation.
Currently: 450mg amitriptyline single dose at night.
Also: Allegra, 1000mg Vitamin C.
Slowly improving.




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