OT Stories - Myths,Legends, Parables, or Real

pauljohntheskeptic
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OT Stories - Myths,Legends, Parables, or Real

In discussions with Caposkia on his thread regarding his recommended book (New Atheist Crusaders) we have mutually agreed to open a discussion on the OT discussing reality versus myth for stories in the OT. My position is that the OT is largely myths and legends with little basis in reality. There may be stories that may be considered literature as Rook has suggested though it still incorporates myths and legends as well in my opinion. The intent is to examine major stories and discuss the mythical components versus the interpretations by Christians and Jews that these events were real. Caposkia has indicated in many of his posts that he agrees that some of the stories are reality based and in those areas I'm interested in understanding his reasoning or any other believer for acceptance versus others where he does not consider them to be. It may be there are a few where we may find agreement as to a story being a myth or it being real though my inclination is little more is reality based other than kingdoms existed in Palestine that were called Israel and Judah and they interacted with other nations in some fashion.

Since the basis of Christian beliefs started with creation and the fall of man we'll begin there and attempt to progress through Genesis in some sort of logical order sort of like Sunday School for those of you that went. I’m not particularly concerned about each little bit of belief in these stories but I’m more interested in the mythology aspects. We could for pages argue over original sin or free will but that isn’t even necessary in my opinion as the text discredits itself with blatant assertions and impossibilities. Instead consider for example Eve is created in one version from Adam’s rib which can be directly compared to the Sumerian goddess of the rib called Nin-ti which Ninhursag gave birth to heal the god Enki. Other comparisons can be made to the Sumerian paradise called Dilmun to the Garden of Eden as well. These stories predate the OT by thousands of years and tell the tale of the ancient Annuna gods that supposedly created the world. Visit www-etcsl.orient.ox.ac.uk/# for more information and some of the translated stories, click on corpus content by number or category.

In order for salvation through Christ from our supposed sins against the God the events of Genesis must have occurred in some fashion. If the Genesis stories are largely mythical or they are simply a parable then this basis is poorly founded and weakens the entire structure of Christian belief. Caposkia claims I error at square one because I don't acknowledge a spiritual world. I suggest that he and other followers error by accepting that which there is no detectable basis. This is done by interpreting parables and myths by the ancients to be more than inadequate understanding by unknowing people that looked for an answer to why things were in the world they observed.

In Genesis 1 is the supposed creation of the world by God. In this account illogical explanations start immediately with the description of the Earth being without form and darkness was upon it. Light is then created and explained as day and night. Next God molded his creation into better detail by creating Heaven above meaning the sky and waters on the earth. He then caused dry land to appear calling it the Earth and the waters the Seas. On this same day he created vegetation with the requirement that it bring forth after its kind by duplication through seeds. The following day he created the heavenly bodies to divide day from night and to be signs for seasons and for years. He made the great light to rule the day and the lesser light the night as well as all the stars. On the 5th day he created all the life in the seas and air with the requirement they reproduce after their own kind. The 6th day he created all the land animals including man both male and female. The gods in this case made man after their image as male and female in their own likeness. He commanded them to multiply and replenish the earth.

Problems start with this account immediately. The Earth according to science is leftover material from the forming of our star, the Sun. This material would have been a glowing mass of molten material. The land in any event would emerge first before water could exist as a liquid upon it due to the extreme heat.  Light would already exist in the form of the Sun which according to current science is not as old as other stars in our galaxy not to mention in the Universe. The account mentions that day and night were made but this is not so except for a local event on the planet. An object not on the Earth would have no such condition or a different form of night and day. The account further errors in claiming the Sun, Moon, and stars were all formed following the creation of the Earth. In theories of planet formulation the star is formed first and planets afterwords. In the case of the moon multiple theories occur though not one where it zapped into the Universe suddenly. The statement that the heavenly bodies were created for signs and seasons is more evidence of a legend. The other planets and stars are purposeful in ways that aid in life existing or continuing to do so on Earth. Jupiter for example is a great big vacuum cleaner sucking into its gravitational field all sorts of debris that could eradicate life on Earth. Is this then a design by the god or just part of the situation that helped to allow life to progress as it did on the Earth? The observation of specific planets or stars in specific areas of the sky is just that, an observation no more and not placed there by a god to indicate the change of seasons.

One can also see some similarity between Genesis 1 and the Egyptian creation myth Ra and the serpent, see http://ccat.sas.upenn.edu/~humm/Resources/StudTxts/raSerpnt.html . In this myth Ra is the first on the scene and he creates all the creatures himself doing so before he made the wind or the rain. Ra does not create man but the gods he created gave birth to the people of Egypt who multiplied and flourished.

Some Jewish sects as well as Catholic belief allow for evolution to have been the method for creation of life on Earth. This however is in contradiction to Genesis in that all vegetation and animals were to reproduce only after their own kind. If this is so, then evolution is not compatible with the creation story. Simply put the life could not alter and produce different versions not after its kind. Since obvious examples exist for variation in species such as evolution even as simple as fish in caves without eyes or color versus those that are in streams outside there is obvious adaption thus discrediting this part of Genesis as myth.

The creation of man in Genesis 1 also suggests multiple gods as man was created in their likeness male and female thus following Canaanite gods such as Yahweh and his Asherah or Ba'al and Athirat that may be a reflection of an older tradition from either Egypt or Sumer. Genesis 2 on the other hand has a slightly different version from a variant I'll discuss in a later post.

I consider Genesis 1 to be a myth, legend or a parable based on all the problems discussed with basis in ancient stories from Sumer and Egypt. I leave it to Caposkia and other believers to indicate where they accept parts of Genesis 1 as reality and to indicate their reasoning if they do so.

____________________________________________________________
"I guess it's time to ask if you live under high voltage power transmission lines which have been shown to cause stimulation of the fantasy centers of the brain due to electromagnetic waves?" - Me

"God is omnipotent, omniscient, omnibenevolent, - it says so right here on the label. If you have a mind capable of believing all three of these divine attributes simultaneously, I have a wonderful bargain for you. No checks please. Cash and in small bills." - Robert A Heinlein.


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Jesus H. Christ..........exist?

Vastet wrote:
Actually a good number of historians do not agree there was ever a jesus, and that number increases every year as it becomes more socially acceptable to say so. There is absolutely no contemporary evidence for jesus. He is the single most mythological figure of today that is accepted as being a real person, but there's no proof he existed at all. The earliest writings mentioning him were written decades after he died. In time, the trend will become the opposite of what it is now, and the majority of historians will doubt he existed. Beyond that, I don't recommend attempting to debate him. All his posts over the years suggest to me that he's a gnostic atheist. A discussion between the two of you would be roughly equivalent to two walls talking to each other. Might be amusing to watch for a little while, but it would quickly degenerate and became quite boring.[/quote}

 

 

                         I totally agree with Vastet on this point.   Jesus Christ,  or Joshua Massiah, or Jesu Cristo, or Jesus Christus;   What ever translation comes to you  the answer is the SAME!!!!!!! IT  IS  a  title: a Rank: NOT a name.    It means simply   "gods annointed savior".   There were meny MYSTIC cults existing throughtout the Levant {Northern Turkey south to Egypt and east to Damascus}  Since gods name was sacrosanct,  the cults used only the rank/title to worship their "born  anew" savior.   The jesus charactor we know today  IS  a consoladation of meny personalities; over half are fictional.

 

 

               

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VEGETARIAN: Ancient Hindu word for "lousy hunter"

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pauljohntheskeptic
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He cuts my lawn every week

Vastet wrote:
Actually a good number of historians do not agree there was ever a jesus, and that number increases every year as it becomes more socially acceptable to say so. There is absolutely no contemporary evidence for jesus. He is the single most mythological figure of today that is accepted as being a real person, but there's no proof he existed at all. The earliest writings mentioning him were written decades after he died. In time, the trend will become the opposite of what it is now, and the majority of historians will doubt he existed. Beyond that, I don't recommend attempting to debate him. All his posts over the years suggest to me that he's a gnostic atheist. A discussion between the two of you would be roughly equivalent to two walls talking to each other. Might be amusing to watch for a little while, but it would quickly degenerate and became quite boring.

I just saw him on Wednesday, he arrived along with Juan and Pablo. He runs the large mower. Don't think he has a green card.

Other than that, I recommend Bart Ehrman's book - "Did Jesus exist?" History does indicate there were many named Jesus in the 1st century CE. It could be that one or more of them were the models for the storytelling. 

However, I'm not interested in the NT storytales right now, if the OT is storytales, then the NT is founded on quicksand. 

 

 

____________________________________________________________
"I guess it's time to ask if you live under high voltage power transmission lines which have been shown to cause stimulation of the fantasy centers of the brain due to electromagnetic waves?" - Me

"God is omnipotent, omniscient, omnibenevolent, - it says so right here on the label. If you have a mind capable of believing all three of these divine attributes simultaneously, I have a wonderful bargain for you. No checks please. Cash and in small bills." - Robert A Heinlein.


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pauljohntheskeptic

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Vastet wrote:
Actually a good number of historians do not agree there was ever a jesus, and that number increases every year as it becomes more socially acceptable to say so. There is absolutely no contemporary evidence for jesus. He is the single most mythological figure of today that is accepted as being a real person, but there's no proof he existed at all. The earliest writings mentioning him were written decades after he died. In time, the trend will become the opposite of what it is now, and the majority of historians will doubt he existed. Beyond that, I don't recommend attempting to debate him. All his posts over the years suggest to me that he's a gnostic atheist. A discussion between the two of you would be roughly equivalent to two walls talking to each other. Might be amusing to watch for a little while, but it would quickly degenerate and became quite boring.

I just saw him on Wednesday, he arrived along with Juan and Pablo. He runs the large mower. Don't think he has a green card.

Other than that, I recommend Bart Ehrman's book - "Did Jesus exist?" History does indicate there were many named Jesus in the 1st century CE. It could be that one or more of them were the models for the storytelling. 

However, I'm not interested in the NT storytales right now, if the OT is storytales, then the NT is founded on quicksand. 

 

 

yea, as I said, we welcome input based on where this thread is at in the walkthrough of the Bible history.  Those of you who want to discuss the history of Jesus with me know where else you can find me... or let me know of a new thread you started on the subject and I'll gladly join.


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Apologies, I felt I had to

Apologies, I felt I had to say something when you responded to jesusneverexisted. As I said, I don't see such a discussion going anywhere. I think it would have a negative impact on the interesting discussion currently underway. But it's up to you who you speak with, so ignore me.

Proud Canadian, Enlightened Atheist, Gaming God.


pauljohntheskeptic
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 Been very busy and haven't

 Been very busy and haven't been on for a long time. Sorry about that. Too many things to do this Summer. I was pretty worn out after tax season and have been taking it easy.

I will get back to this later. My 2 Grandkids have taken up a lot of time this year, they go back to school soon and I'll try to get motivated again.

 

PJTS

____________________________________________________________
"I guess it's time to ask if you live under high voltage power transmission lines which have been shown to cause stimulation of the fantasy centers of the brain due to electromagnetic waves?" - Me

"God is omnipotent, omniscient, omnibenevolent, - it says so right here on the label. If you have a mind capable of believing all three of these divine attributes simultaneously, I have a wonderful bargain for you. No checks please. Cash and in small bills." - Robert A Heinlein.


caposkia
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pauljohntheskeptic

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

 Been very busy and haven't been on for a long time. Sorry about that. Too many things to do this Summer. I was pretty worn out after tax season and have been taking it easy.

I will get back to this later. My 2 Grandkids have taken up a lot of time this year, they go back to school soon and I'll try to get motivated again.

 

PJTS

I understand. My summer has been quite busy here as well.. in a way, i'm kind of glad this hadn't continued quite yet... the time required to appropriately respond to this thread just isn't available right now... do take your time, I understand. enjoy the time with your grandkids, nothing is more important.


pauljohntheskeptic
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caposkia

caposkia wrote:
pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

 Been very busy and haven't been on for a long time. Sorry about that. Too many things to do this Summer. I was pretty worn out after tax season and have been taking it easy.

I will get back to this later. My 2 Grandkids have taken up a lot of time this year, they go back to school soon and I'll try to get motivated again.

 

PJTS

I understand. My summer has been quite busy here as well.. in a way, i'm kind of glad this hadn't continued quite yet... the time required to appropriately respond to this thread just isn't available right now... do take your time, I understand. enjoy the time with your grandkids, nothing is more important.

Probably be at least another month before I continue, maybe 2. I agree, that a lot of thought and consideration goes into posts for this thread which is why I haven't been posting off hand remarks.

 

 

____________________________________________________________
"I guess it's time to ask if you live under high voltage power transmission lines which have been shown to cause stimulation of the fantasy centers of the brain due to electromagnetic waves?" - Me

"God is omnipotent, omniscient, omnibenevolent, - it says so right here on the label. If you have a mind capable of believing all three of these divine attributes simultaneously, I have a wonderful bargain for you. No checks please. Cash and in small bills." - Robert A Heinlein.


pauljohntheskeptic
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No Time

 After 6 months I still have no time to do this thread, or really spend much time on the forum.

My priorities have changed and I won't have much time to do the research needed to do what is required for the analysis and commentary that meets the standards I expect from myself.

So, I intend to suspend this effort for now.

I imagine by late Summer I may have more time, though I thought that last year and I didn't, so for now I will only drop by the forum here and there.

I'm still a supporter of this site and will contine to be as long as it exists.

Thanks to all of you for all of the discussions over the years, I also noticed I've been a member for just over 7 years now. Wow! Time does fly.

 

PJTS

____________________________________________________________
"I guess it's time to ask if you live under high voltage power transmission lines which have been shown to cause stimulation of the fantasy centers of the brain due to electromagnetic waves?" - Me

"God is omnipotent, omniscient, omnibenevolent, - it says so right here on the label. If you have a mind capable of believing all three of these divine attributes simultaneously, I have a wonderful bargain for you. No checks please. Cash and in small bills." - Robert A Heinlein.


caposkia
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pauljohntheskeptic

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

 After 6 months I still have no time to do this thread, or really spend much time on the forum.

My priorities have changed and I won't have much time to do the research needed to do what is required for the analysis and commentary that meets the standards I expect from myself.

So, I intend to suspend this effort for now.

I imagine by late Summer I may have more time, though I thought that last year and I didn't, so for now I will only drop by the forum here and there.

I'm still a supporter of this site and will contine to be as long as it exists.

Thanks to all of you for all of the discussions over the years, I also noticed I've been a member for just over 7 years now. Wow! Time does fly.

 

PJTS

that's fine pjts, I think I would have had trouble doing the appropriate research for this thread as well.  I've had no time just as you.  Maybe some year we'll both settle down and pick it up again.  For now, good luck on your endevors.  You're one of the smart people.  keep it up.  take care.


pauljohntheskeptic
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caposkia

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

 After 6 months I still have no time to do this thread, or really spend much time on the forum.

My priorities have changed and I won't have much time to do the research needed to do what is required for the analysis and commentary that meets the standards I expect from myself.

So, I intend to suspend this effort for now.

I imagine by late Summer I may have more time, though I thought that last year and I didn't, so for now I will only drop by the forum here and there.

I'm still a supporter of this site and will contine to be as long as it exists.

Thanks to all of you for all of the discussions over the years, I also noticed I've been a member for just over 7 years now. Wow! Time does fly.

 

PJTS

that's fine pjts, I think I would have had trouble doing the appropriate research for this thread as well.  I've had no time just as you.  Maybe some year we'll both settle down and pick it up again.  For now, good luck on your endevors.  You're one of the smart people.  keep it up.  take care.

Thanks Cap, I'll still be around will take on shorter issues for now. Some day we'll have to meet for that beer.

PJTS

____________________________________________________________
"I guess it's time to ask if you live under high voltage power transmission lines which have been shown to cause stimulation of the fantasy centers of the brain due to electromagnetic waves?" - Me

"God is omnipotent, omniscient, omnibenevolent, - it says so right here on the label. If you have a mind capable of believing all three of these divine attributes simultaneously, I have a wonderful bargain for you. No checks please. Cash and in small bills." - Robert A Heinlein.


pauljohntheskeptic
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Long time since I posted

 Its been nearly a year since I posted to RRS. Too much to do, too little time.

I will try to continue this thread with Caposkia if he would like. I started it almost 7 years ago.

Or it can just end here.

PJTS

____________________________________________________________
"I guess it's time to ask if you live under high voltage power transmission lines which have been shown to cause stimulation of the fantasy centers of the brain due to electromagnetic waves?" - Me

"God is omnipotent, omniscient, omnibenevolent, - it says so right here on the label. If you have a mind capable of believing all three of these divine attributes simultaneously, I have a wonderful bargain for you. No checks please. Cash and in small bills." - Robert A Heinlein.