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.


caposkia
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pauljohntheskeptic wrote:If

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

If you persist with this line of thought you discredit even having free will and create a scenario whereby the whole thing enfolding upon the Earth is a play written by the god. So it comes down to why even bother having any of the Amalekites be born if all that's going to happen is they will be killed. One angle believers take on this is it is an example to others. So the god suppresses free will by eliminating one group so another can practice it.

this line of thought does not discredit having free will.  If you have a child and they are put into a particular situation, you as a parent... an attentive parent through their lives that is, would more or less know the choice your child will make.  Why?  is it because you have them on puppet strings and you're making the choice for them?  Of course not, you just happen to be a good parent who knows your child very well.  God in this case would be the best parent there is, knowing his children so well, he knows exactly what they're going to do in a given situation.  

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

I think I answered how I got to this country more or less. My great grandparents emigrated from Germany in 1866 on one side while my grandparents on the other side emigrated from the German  Black Sea colonies in Russia in 1898.

...and what made them choose that path?

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

My great grandfather's brothers stayed in Germany in 1866. Several of their sons fought for Germany in WW1. Some of their sons fought in WW2. One was a SS Panzer Colonel who died on the Russian front. My uncles fought in WW2 for the US. Both were in the Pacific. My father was also German and fought in WW2 for the US. He was sent to Europe.

I was never judged for the actions of my German relatives, though in some cases German immigrants were held in suspicion. In WW2, Japanese Americans were incarcerated illegally just because they were descendants, so in this case they were held in suspicion for the current actions of a country at war with the US not the past actions of their ancestors.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Bad example with Saddam's sons, they were both fairly corrupt and vicious, see the HBO mini-series "House of Saddam".

perfect example then.  the point is, Saddam was the problem.  We knew his sons were corrupt and that if we took Saddam down, they'd only take his place and continue his legacy.  Same in this Bible story.  There are not a lot of details about this particular generation in this story, but by context and other situations like this, we can logically conclude this generation was "corrupt" in the same manner.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

I'm not one that considers the Iraq invasion to have been justified. That's another argument, and not something I really care to discuss.

I'm not justifying any of it either.  I'm just pulling out an example of a situation where an unrelated generation was taken down despite the immediate problem.  I would agree with you in not considering the Iraq invasion justified.  

We definitely don't need to go there.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

I have never been held accountable for the sack of Rome by the Lutherans in the 1500s. If your family lived in Italy probably some of my relatives killed, tortured or raped your relatives.

My family from my mothers side is actually from italy, it is likely what you say is true.  But again, are you suggesting you'd continue in their footsteps therefore justifying punishment on you?  I would assume not and from what i can tell, the problem is no longer, therefore no further consequences are needed.  

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

What I'm saying is you are responsible for your own actions and the actions that you support. If I didn't support or aide my relative robbing a bank 100 years before I was born why should I be held accountable for it?

the point is you wouldn't.... are you suggesting this whole generation did not support their ancestors actions?  What evidences do we have of what they did or did not support and how do we know they wouldn't have continued the legacy?

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

As the leaders I did not support ordered an invasion I did not support, I'd argue against taking responsibility for what Bush did, though I would accept responsibility for not doing enough to stop the warmongers in the Bush administration.

...and as far as the rest of the world is concerned then, you are responsible...  just as much as I would be.  Though in the world today, unlike the cultures of this time, we have a lot more individuality and are not completely responsible for the actions of everyone in our culture or race.  therefore you could likely get away with an explanation of how you aren't responsible for the invasion.. at least not directly.

 

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

In the case of NAZI Germany, I agree with the Soviet General who told his troops that the only innocent in Germany were the unborn. Though I may be related by blood, I considered all of those who lived at the time in Germany to be responsible for the situation. Many received their just due for their part, many did not. Not all of them deserved death, but many escaped justice. Turning a blind eye to what Hitler and the NAZIs did was complicity unless they fought against it as resistance fighters.

Unless you can show the Amalekites 200 years after the encounter with 100 escapees did something similar, I will continue to argue it was evil and unjust if it was a real genocide. As I think it was no more than a village of very few, as the Amalekites still show up in later OT scripture, I think it was only exaggerated propaganda anyway.

...and likewise, unless you can show that they were not going to continue in that legacy, I will continue to argue that it was understood that they were corrupt and were going to continue and that the punishment was justified.  This might have to be categorized in the unknown.  

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Your point is? The US was established to be far more fair than your god?

no, that the laws written only a few hundred years ago that we abide by today are nothing like the laws that were in place before that time for thousands of years.  Relevant to this particular culture, their laws were nothing like ours either.  Also, what we consider justified today is nothing like what was understood to be justified during that time, nor is what we consider justified today isn't what anyone living under rulership of a king would consider justified.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Yes, as the Amalekites didn't have a copy of the Hebrew scrolls. Maybe they had no idea some of their ancestors set upon a 100 escapees out of Egypt.

Maybe... but in the context of history and scripture, its' likely they did.

The problem with the Amalekites is it was over 200 years according to the stories.

not suggesting anything, but is it possible the numbers were exaggerated?  Could it be viewed generally as a long period of time passed instead?

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

We have established only a few may have escaped from Egypt and entered Canaan. The Amalekites attacking the 100 or so Hebrews may have been justified in their action as the Hebrews supposedly came from Egypt and had no homes in Canaan at the time.

In regard to Saddam and Iraq, I don't think we were justified to invade Iraq, another argument, but once we did, we needed to end it ASAP.

as i said I agree with you that it wasn't justified either, justification of the invasion aside, the goal of the mission was to dethrone Saddam, was it justified with that objective then to kill his sons?

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Saddam's sons were corrupt, murderers, who were just as nasty as he was. They were actively doing violence during their father's reign so we didn't need to wait for their turn in power, they already had committed enough crime against their fellow countrymen. Not that it was our job to bring freedom to them, if so we have a lot more countries to invade still.

but maybe they were only doing it by obeying their father.  Once he's done, they might have been able to be rehabilitated right?  

I'm just playing devils advocate.  the difference here is we know exactly who they were, what they have done and what they likely would do.  We don't have nearly as much information on this population and therefore at best can't conclude justification based only on what we know of them.  

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

 First off, no memo was published by the 100 or so escapees out of the supposed Exodus.

Next, in the time we are discussing there were no more than 4500 in Judah in sparse settlements.

The Jews then did not go door to door teaching Torah in foreign lands. This means the Amalekites had no idea what was in the yet to be distributed Bible by the Jewish Publication Society.

but by word of mouth nations knew of the wrath of the God of the people.  There's also no evidences even in scripture where the details are present of God destroying a people:

1.  without appropriate warning

2.  without knowledge of this God's work.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Again, the victims had no Hebrew scrolls, they may have heard or not that the tribal king Saul was en route to devastate their village(s). It is somewhat similar to the Sumerian gods killing man for making too much noise. Did those gods warn the people to shut up? And it wasn't just them talking it was them living. What I see in Saul's genocide is it was propaganda, developed later and probably never even occurred beyond the destruction of a village.

Just because my God is justified in his actions doesn't mean all gods are justified in their actions.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

I think at this point I'd need someone like  Lazurus Long* being in the army of the Amalekites to still be around to tell you what really happened or didn't.

*Lazarus Long was a Robert Heinlein character who lived forever and didn't die, supposedly born though before WW1

most on here would prefer a first hand account

 

 

 


caposkia
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pauljohntheskeptic wrote:1

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

1 Samuel part 8 - Cont’d

Chapter 18 David in Saul’s Employ

This chapter begins with a discussion of the friendship of David and Jonathan. It is almost described as too close. I guess they had the BFF thing then as well.

Saul gave David various missions to do and whatever the task he was always successful. He was given a position in the army with a high rank. After David’s return from the slaughter of the Philistine (singular meaning one? Perhaps Goliath?) the women were all excited singing and dancing and saying, “Saul has slain his thousands but David has slain ten of thousands”. This made Saul very angry and suspicious of David, for what more could he gain but the kingdom. Saul from then on kept a close eye on David.

Comments-
The relationship between David and Saul began to deteriorate when the public’s admiration of David becomes overly enthusiastic. As of the beginning of this chapter the only person we have heard that  David killed was but one, not 10s of thousands though David could have been sneaking out and committing serial murders at night.


The next day, the evil spirit from the god came to Saul very forcefully. Saul was raving throughout his house. David was playing his lyre to soothe Saul but he had a spear in his hands and threw it at David. David dodged the spear twice. Saul was afraid of David as the god was with him and had left Saul except of course the evil spirit of the god. Since Saul was afraid of him he of course promoted him to the captain over a thousand men in the hope he’d die in battle I would guess. David was successful in all he did further adding to Saul’s apprehension of him, though all the people of the land loved him.

Comments –
The god continues to harass Saul with his evil to the point Saul attempts to kill David. The god exhibits the qualities of a trickster such as Loki, though causing problems for man is not a new thing to him.

In v17 Saul offers his oldest daughter Merab to David in marriage, something that was promised in the previous chapter for killing Goliath, perhaps another legend. Anyway, all David has to do is serve Saul and kill Philistines. Saul figures they will eventually kill David for him. Saul ignores his offer to David and gives his daughter in marriage to Adriel of Meholah instead. His other daughter Michal was in love with David which pleased Saul as he still had a means to control David he thought. Saul informs him that the only price for his daughter is the foreskins of 100 Philistines, which he hoped would cause David’s death. David and his men went out and he killed 200 Philistines which he counted out to Saul on his return. Thus Saul gave his daughter Michal to David as a wife and continued to fear David as the god was with him.

Comments –

More narrative in the legendary manner, typical of ancients describing events with much detail even when it is unsupported. Stories such as this also involve Greek heroes in similar fashion. All it does is show the god has abandoned Saul, except of course his evil spirit and now supports David, at least in the opinion of the ancient bard who wrote this story.

Chapter 19 – Saul’s attempts to kill David

This chapter begins with Saul ordering his son Jonathan and all his servants to kill David. As Jonathan was David’s BFF he first warned David about his father and told him he’d talk to his father. Jonathan tells Saul David has done nothing but serve Saul and the people and should not be killed,  He asked him why would you wrong an innocent man. Saul takes an oath to the god as follows, “As surely as the LORD lives, David will not be put to death.”

Comments –
Saul apparently has a jealous rage from the evil spirit of the god. The oath he took was of course worthless, as the god does not live either because he is imaginary, my view or because he was incorporeal or out side of dimensional reality.

Once more David is in Saul’s house when the evil spirit of the god descends upon him. Saul again has his spear handy and attempted to stick David with it. David correctly flees the scene. Saul sent messengers to watch David’s house and kill him in the morning. David’s wife warned him if he didn’t leave that night he’d be dead in the morning. Michal set up a dummy in the bed to appear to be David. When the killers came in to slay him that’s what they found. David fled to Samuel at Ramah and informed him of all that Saul had done.


Saul learns that Samuel and David went to Naioth and dispatches assassins to kill him. Instead, the men end up prophesying with Samuel and other unnamed prophets. When Saul learns his attempt on David’s life once again has failed, he goes to Naioth himself. Saul is also affected by the spirit of the god and prophesies as well, stripping himself naked in the processLe.

Comments-
The god continues to insert his evil spirit into Saul over-riding free will. Saul as mentioned ignored his oath and attempts to kill David anyway. This is simply all more unsupportable narrative and legendary as other bard originated stories of supposed heroes of the ancients.

be it that this focus is on a particular relationship, those details will be hard to support or debunk.  they were known to be powerful men in the lands as far as in battle.  Legends may have helped in the manner.   The point of the story seems to be the relationship and why it started to have problems and not so much was was going on otherwise.  


pauljohntheskeptic
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caposkia

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

I'm attempting to identify the parts which smack of legends and storytelling. I did give Saul at least the level of legend not complete fiction, that in itself is a lot. You agree the numbers are exaggerated, why would not other parts be as well? My take is the story was enhanced to make it more appealing and not just in the numbers but in the purported actions of the characters. The problem is after years of alteration, how can one tell what was the original story.

I agree that numbers are exaggerated because with the historical research and understanding of the populations and capabilities of the times, we can logically conclude that these numbers are inaccurate.  Why wouldn't other parts of the story be exaggerated as well?  Well, they very well could be... but we have no logical reasoning through research, history and understanding of the populations and cultures of the times to assume they are.  

The concern for many when discovering details in the Bible not to be 100% is exactly what you're asking.  "How can one tell what was the original story." and more commonly, how can we tell what's true or not.  

Through the research and history, it is known of these cultures to be very careful as far as important details of a true event.  Numbers are exaggerated to add emphasis and grab interest.  Places and names might be changed due to the persons current understanding of what is around them, but what actually happened is the point of the whole story and the ancient peoples were very careful not to skew that information as discovered with any like "storytelling' that has been proven to be true.

You know by now that I'm not just talking about the minor details, such as the Moon was in the 1st Quarter or a character wore a linen robe. The points I usually bring up are substantial in some way to the stories that are told. Sometimes the exaggerated claims cause the story to be completely suspect as in the invasion of Canaan by Joshua. As you say, I do question how or what is true and what was the real story. I do not accept these stories or many others from other cultures when they have unrealistic events. What parts if any of the stories of Jason and Hercules are real? Can you tell from their texts? If so please detail for me as I can't. The same holds true for these stories as well as far as I'm concerned.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

I'm judging the character god described in the writing just as I would any character in a book. The action here was genocide, in the same way as it was for Stalin, Hitler or any other character or person. In the time period, genocide was fairly unique in this part of the world, as captives were taken or a ruler was placed over those conquered. I'm a fan of Dexter both on Showtime and Jeff Lindsay's books. Dexter kills other serial killers and is presented as more or less a hero in both. Dexter is both a hero and he is evil in that he kills without a fair trial.

I see how you'd be questioning the character of God... but scripture makes it clear that even non-followers of God during that time were aware of God's expectations and regulations.  Also, to question his character to the degree you have as far as the punishment being just, would suggest then that you want to get into the detail of spiritual ramifications for our actions and how severe they might be.  I don't believe there are answers here.  Just an understanding that there are spiritual consequences for our actions.

I'm not questioning the character described as god as much as I'm questioning the other characters. The god mentioned has to be actually shown to be in the real world and not like the other gods of other cultures that have only stories to support they existed at all. So, the morality I question is that of the characters in the story not the god, since this god seems to me to be yet another man created deity.

Scripture does suggest other cultures knew of the god of the Jews, yet it is the propaganda book of the Jews so of course it would say that to justify the actions the people took.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

 

The idea of a giant in the story was likely to make David appear just that much more heroic and legendary.

...and there could be exaggerations in place... but it doesn't make the story any less true or the events any less real.  It's likely that he was still a larger person due to the detail involved in describing his size and not just power.

Just saying, it's a good bard's tale. Giants, monsters, and heroism make an engrossing tale.

And of course, either way does not make it anymore true or anymore real either. You choose to see it as a true story and I choose to consider it a bard's tale due to many factors from the start of the Jewish/Hebrew legends.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

 

It just shows that this story was altered over time with errors, errors indicate story-telling and legends. Jerusalem did actually exist and the ruling city was Hebron which also existed, so to me it was an error in story telling. In the case of the colonists, no city existed so I don't see your analogy to be the same.

the point was they debated in what would be considered a prime location.  

these differences again don't suggest truth or myth.

David taking the head of Goliath to a city not held by the Jews at the time still to me is a problem, which I'm willing to write off as bard's altering the story to liven it up or such. None of which helps validate it or make it true or not. Really, the story could have basis or could by like the Jason stories where no one today can ever tell what happened or not.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Considering it true until proven not true even though it has errors and character glorification like other legends is not looking at it objectively. Instead, one can minimally suspend judgement. There are other ancient texts which have a lot of historical support, the Sumerians existed, they had cities, they had temples, so why not conclude their god stories are real. That's what you suggest in regard to the god of the Hebrews so why not for them as well?

You're trying to look at this story by itself.  I'm taking this story in context with the Bible as a whole.  We have agreed on evidences suggesting the validity of other stories and more yet to come i'm sure.  The fact that many stories of the Bible have been proven to have happened through history, archeology, etc... or likely in fact, maybe not so proven, would then suggest that we can safely assume this story is just as valid until something else suggests otherwise.  I'm not just looking at this story as true until proven otherwise, I'm looking at it as true in context with what we already know to be true.  

As far as Sumererians, sure the people existed.  In context of scripture, other gods were real, but not superior.  By definition, any being superior to their following is god.  Therefore, any fallen angel or human for that matter could be god and those stories could be true to their following.  The question then would be does this mean that all gods have to be real or no gods can be real?  Of course not.  Each story must be held up to the same scrutiny and historical evidences.

If I take this story while considering the Bible as a whole, I'd straight out dismiss it as a myth or fiction. The content so far has not moved me away from the position that it is legends and myths, it has moved me closer to viewing it as no different than any other culture that looked for explanations or the basic questions of life.

It's interesting you mention how fallen angels resemble the gods of other cultures or just angels in general as they seem to have developed the wings from older beliefs of Sumerian and Assyrian origins.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

The point of the story is to glorify David with heroic acts, much like the stories of Jason.

I don't agree that Israel was ever united as one country, I think these stories were written down after Israel was conquered by Assyria, again see Finkelstein and the above link.

I simply don't like calling the kingdom at this time Israel when I don't think it was which was my point in not using Israel for the name of Saul's kingdom. I wasn't trying to change the focus at all, the focus was on the heroic stories of David and Saul's failing in the god's service. All of which I suggest is done in a manner of story-telling or legends.

so you'd agree the focus was David and not the country.  history was not the strength of the ancient peoples, they only added what they were told.  i'm sure somewhere in there, the writer was told this was a united situation... wishful thinking?  maybe... but then again, either way it doesn't change the validity of the story from what i can see.  the focus and the point still remains.

The focus of these stories was the heroic development of the character David. Was he real? Who knows, can't tell from anything. Was Jason real? Was Hercules? Should people accept the Greek stories as real or true based on what we have read about these characters? Probably not. So with the same scanty type of stories the same must be held for this story.

How can one have any clue of the validity of any of these ancient stories? Are David stories to be held as real while Jason stories are to be held in a state of suspense? If so, why?

Convince me that David was more real than Jason.

 

____________________________________________________________
"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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caposkia

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

I look at impossibilities in the Bible, the Qu'ran, the Sumerian texts, Hindu Vedas as unlikely or explanations by unknowing, uninformed, or misunderstood. I could give you the example of the WW2 island in the Pacific where planes and technology had never been observed by the islanders. They created an entire cult based on John Frum an American called the cargo cult - see - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tanna_%28island%29 and see - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cargo_cult

I collected coins as a hobby for over 20 years and quit about 15 years ago. I look at every single coin and piece of paper money. I find on average 1 or 2 per week worth something more than face value.

So, though I have not thrown away what I know of all religions, I don't accept the conclusions made by believers, priests and shamans. As you have seen, I know what you know but I consider it far differently than you. Religious beliefs to me show the creativity of man in attempting to understand that which has insufficient information. Sometimes you just have to file it as unknown until either more is known or it's shown to be erroneously based in unwarranted creativity.

 

I do file something that has insufficient information in the unknown.  For the sake of this forum, i push toward the content being true as much as you push toward it not being true.  We both know we stand on opposite sides as far as that conclusion, but i can agree unknown due to lack of information for the sake of this forum as well.  The problem is, most of our conversation from hereon out will be categorized in the unknown.  I figure the some vs. none in evidences would suggest one side vs. another.  Some evidences of a crime would outweigh the none for evidences of a person not being involved and they would likely be convicted.  I hold the Bible to the same degree.  Of course off topic I have other reasons beyond history and physical evidences to accept this as well, but that's irrelevant to this forum.  


I understand. There will be a few events and people we will both agree happened here and there.

I also understand that you have your reasons beyond evidence for your position, which at some point we will eventaully discuss but not here in this forum.

____________________________________________________________
"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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caposkia

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

If you persist with this line of thought you discredit even having free will and create a scenario whereby the whole thing enfolding upon the Earth is a play written by the god. So it comes down to why even bother having any of the Amalekites be born if all that's going to happen is they will be killed. One angle believers take on this is it is an example to others. So the god suppresses free will by eliminating one group so another can practice it.

this line of thought does not discredit having free will.  If you have a child and they are put into a particular situation, you as a parent... an attentive parent through their lives that is, would more or less know the choice your child will make.  Why?  is it because you have them on puppet strings and you're making the choice for them?  Of course not, you just happen to be a good parent who knows your child very well.  God in this case would be the best parent there is, knowing his children so well, he knows exactly what they're going to do in a given situation. 

Then the god would have also shown himself to the Amalekites in a similar way as he did the Jews. There is nothing that indicates he went around the world doing for other cultures as he did for his chosen people the Jews is there? The parent would not show favoritism if he was fair to only 1 child but would help all of his children. Where does the god of the Jews do this for the Amalekites?

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

I think I answered how I got to this country more or less. My great grandparents emigrated from Germany in 1866 on one side while my grandparents on the other side emigrated from the German  Black Sea colonies in Russia in 1898.

...and what made them choose that path?

The ones from Germany had heard what a great place the USA was.

The ones in Russia were escaping the Tsar's draft as Catherine the Great had promised not to draft them.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

My great grandfather's brothers stayed in Germany in 1866. Several of their sons fought for Germany in WW1. Some of their sons fought in WW2. One was a SS Panzer Colonel who died on the Russian front. My uncles fought in WW2 for the US. Both were in the Pacific. My father was also German and fought in WW2 for the US. He was sent to Europe.

I was never judged for the actions of my German relatives, though in some cases German immigrants were held in suspicion. In WW2, Japanese Americans were incarcerated illegally just because they were descendants, so in this case they were held in suspicion for the current actions of a country at war with the US not the past actions of their ancestors.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Bad example with Saddam's sons, they were both fairly corrupt and vicious, see the HBO mini-series "House of Saddam".

perfect example then.  the point is, Saddam was the problem.  We knew his sons were corrupt and that if we took Saddam down, they'd only take his place and continue his legacy.  Same in this Bible story.  There are not a lot of details about this particular generation in this story, but by context and other situations like this, we can logically conclude this generation was "corrupt" in the same manner.

Saddam was the largest part of the problem just like Hitler was, though Goring, Himmler, and Goebbels were also a large part of the problem. So too were Saddam's son's actively involved like Himmler and Goebbels. It's not a generational thing here but a group of evil men taking advantage of others.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

I'm not one that considers the Iraq invasion to have been justified. That's another argument, and not something I really care to discuss.

I'm not justifying any of it either.  I'm just pulling out an example of a situation where an unrelated generation was taken down despite the immediate problem.  I would agree with you in not considering the Iraq invasion justified.  

We definitely don't need to go there.

OK.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

I have never been held accountable for the sack of Rome by the Lutherans in the 1500s. If your family lived in Italy probably some of my relatives killed, tortured or raped your relatives.

My family from my mothers side is actually from italy, it is likely what you say is true.  But again, are you suggesting you'd continue in their footsteps therefore justifying punishment on you?  I would assume not and from what i can tell, the problem is no longer, therefore no further consequences are needed. 

No, I'd never pillage in the name of Protestants. The problem in regard to the Amalekites is nothing is discussed on what if anything they were doing at the time of Saul's genocide of them. It looks to be a land grab to me.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

What I'm saying is you are responsible for your own actions and the actions that you support. If I didn't support or aide my relative robbing a bank 100 years before I was born why should I be held accountable for it?

the point is you wouldn't.... are you suggesting this whole generation did not support their ancestors actions?  What evidences do we have of what they did or did not support and how do we know they wouldn't have continued the legacy?

Guilty until proven innocent then is what you suggest here?

There is nothing in this text that suggests what if anything the current generation of Amalekites were doing besides living on land that Saul wanted and the god of the Jews through a prophet told them to take.

Still looks like a land grab.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

As the leaders I did not support ordered an invasion I did not support, I'd argue against taking responsibility for what Bush did, though I would accept responsibility for not doing enough to stop the warmongers in the Bush administration.

...and as far as the rest of the world is concerned then, you are responsible...  just as much as I would be.  Though in the world today, unlike the cultures of this time, we have a lot more individuality and are not completely responsible for the actions of everyone in our culture or race.  therefore you could likely get away with an explanation of how you aren't responsible for the invasion.. at least not directly.

Exactly.

They would be free to hang Bush for atrocities and I'd agree if I was ever on a jury deciding his fate.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

In the case of NAZI Germany, I agree with the Soviet General who told his troops that the only innocent in Germany were the unborn. Though I may be related by blood, I considered all of those who lived at the time in Germany to be responsible for the situation. Many received their just due for their part, many did not. Not all of them deserved death, but many escaped justice. Turning a blind eye to what Hitler and the NAZIs did was complicity unless they fought against it as resistance fighters.

Unless you can show the Amalekites 200 years after the encounter with 100 escapees did something similar, I will continue to argue it was evil and unjust if it was a real genocide. As I think it was no more than a village of very few, as the Amalekites still show up in later OT scripture, I think it was only exaggerated propaganda anyway.

...and likewise, unless you can show that they were not going to continue in that legacy, I will continue to argue that it was understood that they were corrupt and were going to continue and that the punishment was justified.  This might have to be categorized in the unknown. 

Guilty until proved innocent again?

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Your point is? The US was established to be far more fair than your god?

no, that the laws written only a few hundred years ago that we abide by today are nothing like the laws that were in place before that time for thousands of years.  Relevant to this particular culture, their laws were nothing like ours either.  Also, what we consider justified today is nothing like what was understood to be justified during that time, nor is what we consider justified today isn't what anyone living under rulership of a king would consider justified.

Maybe true, but one would hope that man learned from his past errors of history. Though it appears like in BSG, this has all happened before and will happen again, seems to be that we all don't seem to learn from history.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Yes, as the Amalekites didn't have a copy of the Hebrew scrolls. Maybe they had no idea some of their ancestors set upon a 100 escapees out of Egypt.

Maybe... but in the context of history and scripture, its' likely they did.

This is an unwarranted assumption on your part. The god ordered Saul to kill them so they must have been guilty.

Though, maybe not, maybe it was a land grab.

caposkia wrote:

PJTS wrote:

The problem with the Amalekites is it was over 200 years according to the stories.

not suggesting anything, but is it possible the numbers were exaggerated?  Could it be viewed generally as a long period of time passed instead?

200 years is a fairly long time. Probably the relationship between these cultures was not very good for whatever reason. If it was just indicated that Saul invaded and killed them all for the land and the valuables I'd see it as in context of the times.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

We have established only a few may have escaped from Egypt and entered Canaan. The Amalekites attacking the 100 or so Hebrews may have been justified in their action as the Hebrews supposedly came from Egypt and had no homes in Canaan at the time.

In regard to Saddam and Iraq, I don't think we were justified to invade Iraq, another argument, but once we did, we needed to end it ASAP.

as i said I agree with you that it wasn't justified either, justification of the invasion aside, the goal of the mission was to dethrone Saddam, was it justified with that objective then to kill his sons?

See my above comments on Saddam's sons.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Saddam's sons were corrupt, murderers, who were just as nasty as he was. They were actively doing violence during their father's reign so we didn't need to wait for their turn in power, they already had committed enough crime against their fellow countrymen. Not that it was our job to bring freedom to them, if so we have a lot more countries to invade still.

but maybe they were only doing it by obeying their father.  Once he's done, they might have been able to be rehabilitated right?  

I'm just playing devils advocate.  the difference here is we know exactly who they were, what they have done and what they likely would do.  We don't have nearly as much information on this population and therefore at best can't conclude justification based only on what we know of them. 

Not from the propaganda I've seen (US News media). See also the HBO Miniseries I mentioned.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

 First off, no memo was published by the 100 or so escapees out of the supposed Exodus.

Next, in the time we are discussing there were no more than 4500 in Judah in sparse settlements.

The Jews then did not go door to door teaching Torah in foreign lands. This means the Amalekites had no idea what was in the yet to be distributed Bible by the Jewish Publication Society.

but by word of mouth nations knew of the wrath of the God of the people.  There's also no evidences even in scripture where the details are present of God destroying a people:

1.  without appropriate warning

2.  without knowledge of this God's work.

In scripture that's the propaganda.

In reality there is nothing to show if this was true.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Again, the victims had no Hebrew scrolls, they may have heard or not that the tribal king Saul was en route to devastate their village(s). It is somewhat similar to the Sumerian gods killing man for making too much noise. Did those gods warn the people to shut up? And it wasn't just them talking it was them living. What I see in Saul's genocide is it was propaganda, developed later and probably never even occurred beyond the destruction of a village.

Just because my God is justified in his actions doesn't mean all gods are justified in their actions.

Why not? They could be the same group of gods or aliens.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

I think at this point I'd need someone like  Lazurus Long* being in the army of the Amalekites to still be around to tell you what really happened or didn't.

*Lazarus Long was a Robert Heinlein character who lived forever and didn't die, supposedly born though before WW1

most on here would prefer a first hand account

1st hand accounts by a living person that can prove it. 1st hand accounts by long ago dead people can be faked or altered.

____________________________________________________________
"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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caposkia

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

1 Samuel part 8 - Cont’d

Chapter 18 David in Saul’s Employhis daughter Michal to David as a wife and continued to fear David as the god was with him.

  ~ rip ~~


Chapter 19 – Saul’s attempts to kill David

  ~  rip  ~

be it that this focus is on a particular relationship, those details will be hard to support or debunk.  they were known to be powerful men in the lands as far as in battle.  Legends may have helped in the manner.   The point of the story seems to be the relationship and why it started to have problems and not so much was was going on otherwise.  

I agree that these chapters are the relationship between the hero of the story David, and the more or less evil character Saul. This is all part of the overall tale of the legendary David. David, was likely a real person based on how much the OT defends him and his actions. Though I'd never want to meet him as your life expectancy would be vastly decreased as people all around him end up dead, usually thanks to him. More to come on this after he becomes the king.

 

 

____________________________________________________________
"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 wrote:You

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

You know by now that I'm not just talking about the minor details, such as the Moon was in the 1st Quarter or a character wore a linen robe. The points I usually bring up are substantial in some way to the stories that are told. Sometimes the exaggerated claims cause the story to be completely suspect as in the invasion of Canaan by Joshua. As you say, I do question how or what is true and what was the real story. I do not accept these stories or many others from other cultures when they have unrealistic events. What parts if any of the stories of Jason and Hercules are real? Can you tell from their texts? If so please detail for me as I can't. The same holds true for these stories as well as far as I'm concerned. 

I know you bring up more important information in question.  However, usually your focus is names or numbers... as to which we've both agreed that they can be skewed and not change the validity of the story.  

As far as you asking me what parts of Jason and Hercules are real.  As I said before, a lot of thought and research has gone into understanding the stories of the Bible.  If you threw a story in front of me and asked me to tell you what's true in it, I'd have to use my own understanding of what makes sense and pull out any history I might know off the top of my head... the result.  I'd be giving you an answer with a lot of opinion involved.  Instead, i'd need to sit down with each story and pull the whole thing apart... parsing words and phrases that may be difficult to translate and looking into the writers culture and personality to understand why it was written like it was.  I'd also have to compare statements in the story with history to see where it seems to steer away from the truth.  From there I'd need to recheck my parsing and research to make sure I didn't misunderstand the text before I conclude that a part or the whole story is not true.  

It takes years... decades, to thoroughly analyze a historical document.  it's not as cut and dry as you seem to suggest

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

 

I'm not questioning the character described as god as much as I'm questioning the other characters. The god mentioned has to be actually shown to be in the real world and not like the other gods of other cultures that have only stories to support they existed at all. So, the morality I question is that of the characters in the story not the god, since this god seems to me to be yet another man created deity.

Scripture does suggest other cultures knew of the god of the Jews, yet it is the propaganda book of the Jews so of course it would say that to justify the actions the people took.

Other cultures have stories that are very congruent with the stories of the bible... names and numbers might be different, but the Bible doesn't deny that God was known by many names.  does that mean Ba'al was also the god of the Bible... no, there are clear differences... This is where personality is looked at more than names.  Does that mean that the God of the Bible wasn't mistaken to be another god by other cultures.. of course not.  People throughout history have always made conclusions before having enough information to do so.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Just saying, it's a good bard's tale. Giants, monsters, and heroism make an engrossing tale.

And of course, either way does not make it anymore true or anymore real either. You choose to see it as a true story and I choose to consider it a bard's tale due to many factors from the start of the Jewish/Hebrew legends.

Just a thought from this statement.  In my experience talking to non-believers, they always revert to a comparison of stories of known fiction.  Where do these common mythical stories of Giants, Monsters, and heroism come from... everything had a beginning... they had to start somewhere...   I believe understanding the origin helps us better understand the story in question.  If you're going to question the Bible and compare it to those common fictional characters, we'd need to from here go back to where those fictional characters came from.  There's always a source or reasoning to such creations.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

 

David taking the head of Goliath to a city not held by the Jews at the time still to me is a problem, which I'm willing to write off as bard's altering the story to liven it up or such. None of which helps validate it or make it true or not. Really, the story could have basis or could by like the Jason stories where no one today can ever tell what happened or not.

I can see that.  There's not a lot written historically about this book.  The reason is because there's not a lot of information.  Therefore we have to take the Bible as a whole again and consider what has been validated as congruent with history... which much of what we covered generally is congruent.  many of the stories esp. NT are valdated in history to have at least happened... as far as the metaphysical aspect of it... that's beyond history other than the congruency of claims in history

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

If I take this story while considering the Bible as a whole, I'd straight out dismiss it as a myth or fiction. The content so far has not moved me away from the position that it is legends and myths, it has moved me closer to viewing it as no different than any other culture that looked for explanations or the basic questions of life.

It's interesting you mention how fallen angels resemble the gods of other cultures or just angels in general as they seem to have developed the wings from older beliefs of Sumerian and Assyrian origins.

how does changed numbers or names convince you more that these stories are fictional?  These discrepancies are congruent with other historical documents of the time that are known to be true.  

Seems to be a lot of detail irrelevant to explaining basic questions to life in these stories.  Quite a waste of time if that's its intention.  

The Bible makes it understood that fallen angels are demons.  Where did Sumerian and Assyrian cultures get the wing idea?

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

The focus of these stories was the heroic development of the character David. Was he real? Who knows, can't tell from anything. Was Jason real? Was Hercules? Should people accept the Greek stories as real or true based on what we have read about these characters? Probably not. So with the same scanty type of stories the same must be held for this story.

The same scrutiny is held against these stories.  however, scholars have found reason when taking the Bible as a whole to accept at least the validity of the happenings, even on a smaller scale.  As I've said, there's little evidence that these particular stories happened in history. A little more for other stories..  There is nothing in history to suggest they didn't happen.  This is why by history alone, I'd have to assume them plausible until otherwise shown.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

How can one have any clue of the validity of any of these ancient stories? Are David stories to be held as real while Jason stories are to be held in a state of suspense? If so, why?

Convince me that David was more real than Jason.

I'd have to look into it a bit... does Jason have a written family tree like David?

 


caposkia
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pauljohntheskeptic wrote:I

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

I understand. There will be a few events and people we will both agree happened here and there.

I also understand that you have your reasons beyond evidence for your position, which at some point we will eventaully discuss but not here in this forum.

Just to be clear... it's not reasons beyond "evidence", rather other reasons beyond history.  This forum was not to convince each other of the truth, but to just discuss scriptures in congruency with history.  At least that was my understanding.  


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pauljohntheskeptic

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Then the god would have also shown himself to the Amalekites in a similar way as he did the Jews. There is nothing that indicates he went around the world doing for other cultures as he did for his chosen people the Jews is there? The parent would not show favoritism if he was fair to only 1 child but would help all of his children. Where does the god of the Jews do this for the Amalekites?

It is generally understood that all the other cultures have the same family tree from the beginning.  Geneology supports this.  

Good parents don't show favoritism, but for a child that has left home and does not acknowledge his parents, the parents won't be there for them naturally.  It's likely that if they hold a life long grudge or even just forget, the children of the child would never know the parents.    It's a similar idea here.  The other cultures, that God has not treated like his chosen are not so because they don't acknowledge him as their god.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

The ones from Germany had heard what a great place the USA was.

The ones in Russia were escaping the Tsar's draft as Catherine the Great had promised not to draft them.

So in order for you to say that you do not reap the consequences of your ancestors, you'd have to admit then that if the ones from Germany chose to stay in Germany and the ones in Russia didn't escape, your life would still be the same and you'd still be living where you are now and have the same life you do now.  

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

 

Saddam was the largest part of the problem just like Hitler was, though Goring, Himmler, and Goebbels were also a large part of the problem. So too were Saddam's son's actively involved like Himmler and Goebbels. It's not a generational thing here but a group of evil men taking advantage of others.

the point is they are different generations and the sons were not the problem at the moment regardless of what we knew about them.  We know even less of these generational cultures and they could have been just as much of a problem.  If anything is ever detailed about a population about to be destroyed in scripture, there's has always been a current reason why.  The promises of destruction from generations past are put in place I understand because God knows by their actions, the generations to follow will still be a problem... and all evidences scriptural or otherwise have shown this to be true.

 

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

No, I'd never pillage in the name of Protestants. The problem in regard to the Amalekites is nothing is discussed on what if anything they were doing at the time of Saul's genocide of them. It looks to be a land grab to me.

There is a lack of information for this situation, which is why i have to look at other similar annihilations.  Others have been detailed to be a current problem... any explanation has been consistent to detail such... therefore in context with the whole Bible, I can't find justification to assume this population wasn't a current problem despite the promises made of destruction.  

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Guilty until proven innocent then is what you suggest here?

only if we are the judges today with the evidence we have.  Back then when this invasion happened, we don't know what they were like or what kind of information was known about them... therefore by the context of scripture and the reasoning described behind other invasions like this, it's reasonable to conclude that they too were a current problem as well as a past problem.  

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

There is nothing in this text that suggests what if anything the current generation of Amalekites were doing besides living on land that Saul wanted and the god of the Jews through a prophet told them to take.

Still looks like a land grab.

lets remember this started by an assumption on your part that there was no excuse for the invasion.  Due to lack of evidences of the situation, neither can conclude anything by this story alone.  context would suggest they were a current problem and for this invasion to be nothing more than a land grab would be inconsistent with the personality of God and his followers.  

 

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Guilty until proved innocent again?

You're making a verdict.  I'm not.   This was not our doing.  We're looking back and trying to see if the actions were justified.  By context they were.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Maybe true, but one would hope that man learned from his past errors of history. Though it appears like in BSG, this has all happened before and will happen again, seems to be that we all don't seem to learn from history.

that seems to be general knowledge.  I think if we learned from history, more than half the worlds problems wouldn't be problems anymore.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

This is an unwarranted assumption on your part. The god ordered Saul to kill them so they must have been guilty.

How is referencing to context assuming?

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

1.  without appropriate warning

so then centuries old warnings have an expiration date of course.  It is generally known that if you kill someone you're going to jail... what you didn't know is that the death penalty is legal in the state you killed that person... however, you had no appropriate warning of this.. therefore is it justified for you to say they can't sentence you to death?

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

2.  without knowledge of this God's work.

context would suggest this is not true.... unless you have historical reasoning suggesting this.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Why not? They could be the same group of gods or aliens.

purpose or reason.  Any explanation of Gods actions can be deduced as justified logically.  Atheists argue the not so well explained but don't support it as unjustified in any way. 

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

1st hand accounts by a living person that can prove it. 1st hand accounts by long ago dead people can be faked or altered.

Therefore in history, nothing can really be proven, only agreed upon.  


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caposkia

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

You know by now that I'm not just talking about the minor details, such as the Moon was in the 1st Quarter or a character wore a linen robe. The points I usually bring up are substantial in some way to the stories that are told. Sometimes the exaggerated claims cause the story to be completely suspect as in the invasion of Canaan by Joshua. As you say, I do question how or what is true and what was the real story. I do not accept these stories or many others from other cultures when they have unrealistic events. What parts if any of the stories of Jason and Hercules are real? Can you tell from their texts? If so please detail for me as I can't. The same holds true for these stories as well as far as I'm concerned. 

I know you bring up more important information in question.  However, usually your focus is names or numbers... as to which we've both agreed that they can be skewed and not change the validity of the story.  

As far as you asking me what parts of Jason and Hercules are real.  As I said before, a lot of thought and research has gone into understanding the stories of the Bible.  If you threw a story in front of me and asked me to tell you what's true in it, I'd have to use my own understanding of what makes sense and pull out any history I might know off the top of my head... the result.  I'd be giving you an answer with a lot of opinion involved.  Instead, i'd need to sit down with each story and pull the whole thing apart... parsing words and phrases that may be difficult to translate and looking into the writers culture and personality to understand why it was written like it was.  I'd also have to compare statements in the story with history to see where it seems to steer away from the truth.  From there I'd need to recheck my parsing and research to make sure I didn't misunderstand the text before I conclude that a part or the whole story is not true.  

It takes years... decades, to thoroughly analyze a historical document.  it's not as cut and dry as you seem to suggest.

I agree a lot of thought has gone into the research and study of the stories in the Bible. This is also true for the Greek stories, the Sumerian, and the Egyptian where possible.

However, the myths and stories have not been taken seriously until recent times. Nearly all scientists and people prior to the 20th century did not believe in meteorites for example . Thomas Jefferson did not consider it possible for stones to fall from the sky. Yet they do so don't they. A lack of science caused this error.

See this link from an author on the subject: http://www.eridu.co.uk/Author/atlantis/greek.html

When one considers all of these stories, myths, and legends including those in the OT, there really may be a physical cause behind some of them. That the people didn't understand the cause and so attributed it to a god is due to lack of science and knowledge. This is understandable. It however is not a reason to suddenly conclude Enki or Yahweh were real gods.

So yes I know it takes years to study ancient texts, and most are dismissive of what they find because their understanding of the ancients is lacking and the way the ancients conveyed their information was perhaps altered by their own wonderment of the events. If they didn't understand what they saw or experienced just how are we going to understans what they are trying to describe? When they didn't get it, it was Ra, Enki, Zeus or Yahweh that caused it.

So, how can we really tell what happened? We may never know for sure.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

 

I'm not questioning the character described as god as much as I'm questioning the other characters. The god mentioned has to be actually shown to be in the real world and not like the other gods of other cultures that have only stories to support they existed at all. So, the morality I question is that of the characters in the story not the god, since this god seems to me to be yet another man created deity.

Scripture does suggest other cultures knew of the god of the Jews, yet it is the propaganda book of the Jews so of course it would say that to justify the actions the people took.

 

Other cultures have stories that are very congruent with the stories of the bible... names and numbers might be different, but the Bible doesn't deny that God was known by many names.  does that mean Ba'al was also the god of the Bible... no, there are clear differences... This is where personality is looked at more than names.  Does that mean that the God of the Bible wasn't mistaken to be another god by other cultures.. of course not.  People throughout history have always made conclusions before having enough information to do so.

The Bible does in fact include stories that come from Sumer, as in Tiamat found in the Psalms aka the twisty serpent. This story is also found in Canaanite stories. There were many gods named Ba'al and one from Canaan that had the same attributes as Yahweh, with the same consort as well. This is related to the Ugaritic gods, I can get more info for you when I find time. There are other stories from the much older civilzations such as Sumer that also have found their way into the OT. More on this as we encounter them.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Just saying, it's a good bard's tale. Giants, monsters, and heroism make an engrossing tale.

And of course, either way does not make it anymore true or anymore real either. You choose to see it as a true story and I choose to consider it a bard's tale due to many factors from the start of the Jewish/Hebrew legends.

Just a thought from this statement.  In my experience talking to non-believers, they always revert to a comparison of stories of known fiction.  Where do these common mythical stories of Giants, Monsters, and heroism come from... everything had a beginning... they had to start somewhere...   I believe understanding the origin helps us better understand the story in question.  If you're going to question the Bible and compare it to those common fictional characters, we'd need to from here go back to where those fictional characters came from.  There's always a source or reasoning to such creations.

What stories of "known fiction" have I mentioned? Are the Greek stories fiction? Are the stories of Sumer? How do you know? I do not dismiss that Jason, Hercules and the others from the possibility of once having been real persons at some point. They may have been, but the stories have been so distorted over time one can't tell what actually happened. In the same way, that's what I've been trying to get across to you in regard to  the OT stories. And you have seen and agreed to many places for at least the numbers, events, and more. My point is, why is the magic or unrealistic events in the OT to be considered real, and those of the others are from common fictional characters and are not real. Perhaps all are distorted and not true. As these things don't seem to occur in our world, it seems very likely that the ancients misunderstood, and then we misunderstood what they were saying as well.

 

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

 

David taking the head of Goliath to a city not held by the Jews at the time still to me is a problem, which I'm willing to write off as bard's altering the story to liven it up or such. None of which helps validate it or make it true or not. Really, the story could have basis or could by like the Jason stories where no one today can ever tell what happened or not.

I can see that.  There's not a lot written historically about this book.  The reason is because there's not a lot of information.  Therefore we have to take the Bible as a whole again and consider what has been validated as congruent with history... which much of what we covered generally is congruent.  many of the stories esp. NT are valdated in history to have at least happened... as far as the metaphysical aspect of it... that's beyond history other than the congruency of claims in history.

OK then. The information in 1 Samuel was presented as if it occurred. Did it? Who can tell, I can't anymore than any other ancient story. The problem for me is the storyline has major flaws in it. Like I said, I write that off to the storytellers deviating it as they told it.

We'll get to the NT someday, probably after we both have retired, if we can afford Internet service then.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

If I take this story while considering the Bible as a whole, I'd straight out dismiss it as a myth or fiction. The content so far has not moved me away from the position that it is legends and myths, it has moved me closer to viewing it as no different than any other culture that looked for explanations or the basic questions of life.

It's interesting you mention how fallen angels resemble the gods of other cultures or just angels in general as they seem to have developed the wings from older beliefs of Sumerian and Assyrian origins.

how does changed numbers or names convince you more that these stories are fictional?  These discrepancies are congruent with other historical documents of the time that are known to be true.  

Seems to be a lot of detail irrelevant to explaining basic questions to life in these stories.  Quite a waste of time if that's its intention.  

The Bible makes it understood that fallen angels are demons.  Where did Sumerian and Assyrian cultures get the wing idea?

You take a concession that a small group of a few hundred "could have" come from Egypt and make that into just changed numbers. There could also have been no one that came from Egypt at all as well.

There have been included with these stories things attributed to the god, manna, water from rocks, plaques in Egypt, the Red Sea, the stories of Jacob, Abraham, Sodom,  the supposed flood, all of which have marginal basis. So no, it's not just the numbers of the Hebrews being claimed in the millions or hundreds of thousands when there "may have been" a few hundred. It's all of it.

Angels developed wings after the Jews were captives in Babylon. See the artifacts of the Babylonians and Assyrians. Do a Google search on Assyrian, Babylonian artifacts with wings, also try searching on just images too.

This link has a few, you can find more elsewhere - http://www.crystalinks.com/sumergods.html

There was a program on Discovery Channel about this some time last year in regard to how angels developed wings. I think the same program showed the halo developed from Mithra for Jesus and the saints.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

The focus of these stories was the heroic development of the character David. Was he real? Who knows, can't tell from anything. Was Jason real? Was Hercules? Should people accept the Greek stories as real or true based on what we have read about these characters? Probably not. So with the same scanty type of stories the same must be held for this story.

The same scrutiny is held against these stories.  however, scholars have found reason when taking the Bible as a whole to accept at least the validity of the happenings, even on a smaller scale.  As I've said, there's little evidence that these particular stories happened in history. A little more for other stories..  There is nothing in history to suggest they didn't happen.  This is why by history alone, I'd have to assume them plausible until otherwise shown.

As you have said, all things have a beginning, so too for the Greeks, the Canaanites and the Sumerians as with the Hebrews. Perhaps all of these stories as well as the OT have some kind of basis in reality. Man's propensity to attribute to a god what he did not understand is a valid explanation for much of what does not make sense to us today, as well as the very different cultures of the past and their lack of knowledge in conveying what they thought happened.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

How can one have any clue of the validity of any of these ancient stories? Are David stories to be held as real while Jason stories are to be held in a state of suspense? If so, why?

Convince me that David was more real than Jason.

I'd have to look into it a bit... does Jason have a written family tree like David?

There are names mentioned, see wiki - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jason

 

 

 

____________________________________________________________
"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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caposkia

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

I understand. There will be a few events and people we will both agree happened here and there.

I also understand that you have your reasons beyond evidence for your position, which at some point we will eventaully discuss but not here in this forum.

Just to be clear... it's not reasons beyond "evidence", rather other reasons beyond history.  This forum was not to convince each other of the truth, but to just discuss scriptures in congruency with history.  At least that was my understanding.  

The truth is what the truth is. We will probably never know what really happened but man will always continue to research, test and investigate.

The point of this forum was to examine the OT and see what if anything supports it with history and archealogy if available. My intent was to see if it was possible to determine what is myth, legend, parable or real.

Convincing the other of what is the truth is not a goal nor is it likely in any event.

 

____________________________________________________________
"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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caposkia

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Then the god would have also shown himself to the Amalekites in a similar way as he did the Jews. There is nothing that indicates he went around the world doing for other cultures as he did for his chosen people the Jews is there? The parent would not show favoritism if he was fair to only 1 child but would help all of his children. Where does the god of the Jews do this for the Amalekites?

It is generally understood that all the other cultures have the same family tree from the beginning.  Geneology supports this.  

Good parents don't show favoritism, but for a child that has left home and does not acknowledge his parents, the parents won't be there for them naturally.  It's likely that if they hold a life long grudge or even just forget, the children of the child would never know the parents.    It's a similar idea here.  The other cultures, that God has not treated like his chosen are not so because they don't acknowledge him as their god.

It is generally accepted that all people are descended from Africa based on DNA.

As the god of the Jews was a regional god, not known universally world wide I would tend to disagree that he was ever known to them. In the far older civilizations far different stories are told, read the link in the OP at ETCSL or Google the Sumerian gods. The clay tablets of the Sumerians seem to disagree that the god of the Jews was ever known to them and their writings pre-date any date you can choose for the Hebrews. This is also true for the Egyptians.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

The ones from Germany had heard what a great place the USA was.

The ones in Russia were escaping the Tsar's draft as Catherine the Great had promised not to draft them.

So in order for you to say that you do not reap the consequences of your ancestors, you'd have to admit then that if the ones from Germany chose to stay in Germany and the ones in Russia didn't escape, your life would still be the same and you'd still be living where you are now and have the same life you do now. 

No, I wouldn't exist.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

 

Saddam was the largest part of the problem just like Hitler was, though Goring, Himmler, and Goebbels were also a large part of the problem. So too were Saddam's son's actively involved like Himmler and Goebbels. It's not a generational thing here but a group of evil men taking advantage of others.

the point is they are different generations and the sons were not the problem at the moment regardless of what we knew about them.  We know even less of these generational cultures and they could have been just as much of a problem.  If anything is ever detailed about a population about to be destroyed in scripture, there's has always been a current reason why.  The promises of destruction from generations past are put in place I understand because God knows by their actions, the generations to follow will still be a problem... and all evidences scriptural or otherwise have shown this to be true.

In that case, he should have killed Romulus and Remus. The Romans pretty much eradicated the Jews in the 1st and 2nd century.

 

 

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

No, I'd never pillage in the name of Protestants. The problem in regard to the Amalekites is nothing is discussed on what if anything they were doing at the time of Saul's genocide of them. It looks to be a land grab to me.

There is a lack of information for this situation, which is why i have to look at other similar annihilations.  Others have been detailed to be a current problem... any explanation has been consistent to detail such... therefore in context with the whole Bible, I can't find justification to assume this population wasn't a current problem despite the promises made of destruction. 

I understand your position and do not concur. There aren't even stories of these people raiding the Jews. The Sea People aka the Philistines yes. If any group of the time period deserved a genocide based on the OT they did. However, no genocide of the Philistines occur.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Guilty until proven innocent then is what you suggest here?

only if we are the judges today with the evidence we have.  Back then when this invasion happened, we don't know what they were like or what kind of information was known about them... therefore by the context of scripture and the reasoning described behind other invasions like this, it's reasonable to conclude that they too were a current problem as well as a past problem. 

What you are doing is using the supposed evidence found elsewhere for other people to decide the Amalekites must have been guilty.

I don't agree that anything indicates the supposed genocide was more than a land grab. As these people are eventually mentioned again, the genocide was less than 100% anyway.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

There is nothing in this text that suggests what if anything the current generation of Amalekites were doing besides living on land that Saul wanted and the god of the Jews through a prophet told them to take.

Still looks like a land grab.

lets remember this started by an assumption on your part that there was no excuse for the invasion.  Due to lack of evidences of the situation, neither can conclude anything by this story alone.  context would suggest they were a current problem and for this invasion to be nothing more than a land grab would be inconsistent with the personality of God and his followers. 

We don't want to get into how inconsistent Yahweh is shown in the OT or we will be in for a major distraction.

Simply, I do not agree with your position. As I mentioned, why not the Philistines.

The OT itself does not mention raids, wars, or conflicts. It does drag up the raid from 100s of years earlier. If there was a current issue why not mention it? It wasn't. Therefore I conclude it was a revenge story indicating the god would punish those who wronged him or his people to many generations. Probably only propaganda in any event.

 

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Guilty until proved innocent again?

You're making a verdict.  I'm not.   This was not our doing.  We're looking back and trying to see if the actions were justified.  By context they were.

Not really. Show me some burned villages in context. Some attacks, something.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Maybe true, but one would hope that man learned from his past errors of history. Though it appears like in BSG, this has all happened before and will happen again, seems to be that we all don't seem to learn from history.

that seems to be general knowledge.  I think if we learned from history, more than half the worlds problems wouldn't be problems anymore.

Probably, but many people see history as boring and consider the ancients as stupid. Not so really.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

This is an unwarranted assumption on your part. The god ordered Saul to kill them so they must have been guilty.

How is referencing to context assuming?

You are assuming it is true based on only the propaganda texts of the Jews, I'm assuming its distorted and has issues.

What if anything really happened? Who knows?

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

1.  without appropriate warning

so then centuries old warnings have an expiration date of course.  It is generally known that if you kill someone you're going to jail... what you didn't know is that the death penalty is legal in the state you killed that person... however, you had no appropriate warning of this.. therefore is it justified for you to say they can't sentence you to death?

We'd have to establish the propaganda spewed by the Jews made it to other nations and was somehow documented. What we have is a claim that the Jews committed genocide but we don't have the bodies for proof. Nor do we have any other nation mentioning the Jews killed off these particular people either.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

2.  without knowledge of this God's work.

context would suggest this is not true.... unless you have historical reasoning suggesting this.

The context is from the propaganda of the Jewish religion. There is no other support.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Why not? They could be the same group of gods or aliens.

purpose or reason.  Any explanation of Gods actions can be deduced as justified logically.  Atheists argue the not so well explained but don't support it as unjustified in any way.

I'm not sure how this related to what I said.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

1st hand accounts by a living person that can prove it. 1st hand accounts by long ago dead people can be faked or altered.

Therefore in history, nothing can really be proven, only agreed upon.  

Multiple sources do help people agree on what may have occurred. Here we have a 1 sided account.

I'll try to go on into the next chapter this weekend.

We will have to disagree on the genocide as discussed as I consider it to not be likely, especially considering how small the kingdom that a king at the time when Saul supposedly ruled really was. See Finkelstein for that.

I could give you Saul invaded a village and killed 40 or 50 people as a possibility, more than that, probably not.

 

____________________________________________________________
"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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1 Samuel cont'd Chap 20 & 21

1 Samuel 20

The story begins with David fleeing from Naioth soon after he encounters Jonathan. He has no idea what it is he has done to make Saul wish him dead. He asks Jonathan at length about this. Jonathan told him his father did nothing without his knowledge. David told him perhaps his father did not tell him because he knew of their affection for one another. Jonathan asked him what he wanted him to do. They come up with a plan to see if Saul really wanted him dead.

David does not go to the king's table on the new moon, his seat is left empty but Saul says nothing. The following day he again is not there but Saul asks where he is. Jonathan tells Saul the story that David is with his brethren giving sacrifice. Saul informs Jonathan he knows that he is close with David and that isn't true. He tells Jonathan if David lives then he would never be king so he must die.

Jonathan leaves the table and goes out into the field shooting arrows such that the lad with him had to retrieve them from beyond him. This was a message to David that Saul wanted him dead. After the lad leaves David came out of the fields and Jonathan and David wept, kissed and departed one another so the David would be safe.

A detailed story which may be real or may not be. There is no way to tell.

Chapter 21

 David flees to Nob to Ahimelech the priest who is afraid of him. The priest asked him why he was alone. David replied he was on the king's business which no other man should know. David notices the priest has 5 loaves of bread and asked for them. It is the holy bread called the showbread however and the priest informs David of this. David told him it would be OK as the vessels of the young men were holy when they departed. The priest gave him the bread.

One of the servants of Saul was also there that day, who was delayed by the god. He was Doeg the Edomite who was the chief of the herdmen of Saul's. David asked the priest if there was a sword or spear there. The priest told him the sword of Goliath that David had taken was there. David told the priest to give him the sword and he then fled because of his fear of Saul. David goes to Achish and the king of Gath. When David gets to Gath he pretends he is mad as they recognized him as a great warrior and he was afraid. The king questioned don't I have enough madmen already that I need to bring him into my house.

The incident of the showbread is later used by Jesus in the NT in a discussion when he was questioned about his disciples working on the Sabbath by picking corn. It is the Jewish justification that some laws can be suspended in order to save or sustain life.

Again, a detailed story that may be factual or may be fictional, who can tell.

 

____________________________________________________________
"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:

However, the myths and stories have not been taken seriously until recent times. Nearly all scientists and people prior to the 20th century did not believe in meteorites for example . Thomas Jefferson did not consider it possible for stones to fall from the sky. Yet they do so don't they. A lack of science caused this error.

right, and without an understanding of why rocks would fall from the sky or how that's possible, your state of mind would be that it isn't possible because no one could throw a rock hard enough to get it to fly around in space.  it's all about your state of mind.  The state of mind today is focused on what we can see and touch, therefore, it's not possible to have anything exist that can't be observed in the same manner.  (that's the mindset)

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

See this link from an author on the subject: http://www.eridu.co.uk/Author/atlantis/greek.html

yea, there's  a reason why they teach cataclysms in seminaries... at least good, non-bias ones.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

When one considers all of these stories, myths, and legends including those in the OT, there really may be a physical cause behind some of them. That the people didn't understand the cause and so attributed it to a god is due to lack of science and knowledge. This is understandable. It however is not a reason to suddenly conclude Enki or Yahweh were real gods.

no, based just on the history, you shouldn't conclude such.  it's not enough information.  As i expressed to you a long while back, there are many reasons why i believe, History being a part of it, but there are many other categories.  combining the information from all of them leaves me with no other conclusion.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

So yes I know it takes years to study ancient texts, and most are dismissive of what they find because their understanding of the ancients is lacking and the way the ancients conveyed their information was perhaps altered by their own wonderment of the events. If they didn't understand what they saw or experienced just how are we going to understans what they are trying to describe? When they didn't get it, it was Ra, Enki, Zeus or Yahweh that caused it.

So, how can we really tell what happened? We may never know for sure.

from that perspective alone and with the understanding that history is completely reliant on the 'word' of another person who may have misunderstood what they were conveying, no history can be guaranteed.  We can have a good perspective on what likely happened, but no one can say definitely except for the eye witnesses.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

 

The Bible does in fact include stories that come from Sumer, as in Tiamat found in the Psalms aka the twisty serpent. This story is also found in Canaanite stories. There were many gods named Ba'al and one from Canaan that had the same attributes as Yahweh, with the same consort as well. This is related to the Ugaritic gods, I can get more info for you when I find time. There are other stories from the much older civilzations such as Sumer that also have found their way into the OT. More on this as we encounter them.

sounds good

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

What stories of "known fiction" have I mentioned?

i think it was just a general reference to particular fictional characters as described.  I didn't intend to put words in your mouth.  sorry for the confusion.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Are the Greek stories fiction? Are the stories of Sumer? How do you know? I do not dismiss that Jason, Hercules and the others from the possibility of once having been real persons at some point. They may have been, but the stories have been so distorted over time one can't tell what actually happened. In the same way, that's what I've been trying to get across to you in regard to  the OT stories. And you have seen and agreed to many places for at least the numbers, events, and more. My point is, why is the magic or unrealistic events in the OT to be considered real, and those of the others are from common fictional characters and are not real. Perhaps all are distorted and not true. As these things don't seem to occur in our world, it seems very likely that the ancients misunderstood, and then we misunderstood what they were saying as well.

I see what you're saying and i understand your perspective... and from solely a historical perspective without other angles to look at, I'd have to categorize these stories among the rest of ancient history due to the reasons detailed. 

A few differences using historical congruency is the progression of translation of the Biblical stories in comparison to other stories translated over the same extended time period.  E.g.  manuscripts of the Bible over 1000 years has been compared and were noted to be almost identical, whereas most other ancient scripts when compared through 1000 years of handing down and translating haven't typically been as carefully translated.   Another thing with the Bible is The Bible itself was compiled much much later than the stories are dated and therefore the Bible is written and detailed by many many different authors, most of which never met each other let alone lived close together to compare notes, where typical historical myths seem to indicate an individual author or only a specific location in time.

Due to that information, i would still consider the reliability of these stories to be better than those of individual sources from a specific period of time.    

 

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

OK then. The information in 1 Samuel was presented as if it occurred. Did it? Who can tell, I can't anymore than any other ancient story. The problem for me is the storyline has major flaws in it. Like I said, I write that off to the storytellers deviating it as they told it.

the problem is, it's difficult on either side to conclude validity or not based on the "major flaws" you are referencing to.  Those major flaws are congruent with stories of that time due to lack of education and sources.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

You take a concession that a small group of a few hundred "could have" come from Egypt and make that into just changed numbers. There could also have been no one that came from Egypt at all as well.

There have been included with these stories things attributed to the god, manna, water from rocks, plaques in Egypt, the Red Sea, the stories of Jacob, Abraham, Sodom,  the supposed flood, all of which have marginal basis. So no, it's not just the numbers of the Hebrews being claimed in the millions or hundreds of thousands when there "may have been" a few hundred. It's all of it.

Angels developed wings after the Jews were captives in Babylon. See the artifacts of the Babylonians and Assyrians. Do a Google search on Assyrian, Babylonian artifacts with wings, also try searching on just images too.

This link has a few, you can find more elsewhere - http://www.crystalinks.com/sumergods.html

There was a program on Discovery Channel about this some time last year in regard to how angels developed wings. I think the same program showed the halo developed from Mithra for Jesus and the saints.

I'm not sure if that link explains their origin, but does give a good history.  Thanks for the good links btw.  I'll have to look into the discovery program.  

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

There are names mentioned, see wiki - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jason

sounds like they both could be real.  Part of what supports David is the detailed geneology.  I have to admit, i haven't found the time to look into it yet.  


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pauljohntheskeptic wrote:It

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

It is generally accepted that all people are descended from Africa based on DNA.

Eastern, north eastern to be exact.  yup

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

As the god of the Jews was a regional god, not known universally world wide I would tend to disagree that he was ever known to them. In the far older civilizations far different stories are told, read the link in the OP at ETCSL or Google the Sumerian gods. The clay tablets of the Sumerians seem to disagree that the god of the Jews was ever known to them and their writings pre-date any date you can choose for the Hebrews. This is also true for the Egyptians.

As far as our history can trace, He is a regional God... but then again, no one has been able to trace history back to a specific origin, only assumption that it started in the general area that happens to be the same location that DNA suggests humanity started.  All we know is that YHWH is the god of the Jews and therefore we look at the Jews and their location to suggest that this god is regional.  Consider for a moment that before there were Jews, gods still existed and it is understood that this particular god was followed.  I guess we'd have to ask where the "Jewish" focus came from, understandably Israel, but from what exactly.  

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

No, I wouldn't exist.

I rest my case.  The choices of your ancestors determined what happens to you.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Saddam was the largest part of the problem just like Hitler was, though Goring, Himmler, and Goebbels were also a large part of the problem. So too were Saddam's son's actively involved like Himmler and Goebbels. It's not a generational thing here but a group of evil men taking advantage of others.

ok, but then why kill them?  Why not capture them and try them just like we did with their father?

instead of going back and forth with this, my point is we still did ourselves what we're complaining about in the Bible.  It seems to me that if he happened to have grandchildren that were adults, they would have been targets too.  Of course we can speculate, but all in all, the family was going to follow in their parents footsteps and that was understood.  

Due to lack of evidence, we can make assumptions either way about the bible stories, but It's my understanding due to the context of other situations that were detailed better that this particular generation had similar plans.  It's a deduction from context and that's as far as we can go unless we can find some other source that has more details than we are aware of at this point.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

In that case, he should have killed Romulus and Remus. The Romans pretty much eradicated the Jews in the 1st and 2nd century.

That was after Christ right?  That would make a difference.  That's a whole discussion we'll get to at our retirement when we start the NT and discuss how the NT and OT tie together.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

I understand your position and do not concur. There aren't even stories of these people raiding the Jews. The Sea People aka the Philistines yes. If any group of the time period deserved a genocide based on the OT they did. However, no genocide of the Philistines occur.

i'm referring to the annihilations of people groups that didn't use the hand of the followers, but only God's actions directly.  We can speculate too who may have deserved annihilation and who may not have in the context, but we would have to consider a perspective that we don't know, which is the point that God would know them as well as we'd know our own children.  Understanding the intentions of the Biblical God, there would have been a reason for one and not the other.

My understanding of detailing an annihilation in the Bible at all is to express the wrath of God to those who read it and understand how powerful this God really is.  For followers, the details of why are comprehended as there was a good reason for it... like why we destroyed Saddam's children.  Can we back that up empirically?  Not any more than you could back up a land grab, but due to the context and of course the personal relationship that believers claim to have with this God, they know how he works and understand those actions would have been justified and we'd see so if we had all the details.

Seems to me as if it's just wasting time to continue debating the justification of the annihilation.  Due to lack of evidence on either side, we could never come to a sound conclusion it seems based solely on the focus of this forum.  

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

We don't want to get into how inconsistent Yahweh is shown in the OT or we will be in for a major distraction.

agreed, it's a whole other discussion for another time... on our death beds after we finish this forum Eye-wink

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Not really. Show me some burned villages in context. Some attacks, something.

Would Sodom and Gomorrah apply here, or not because it wasn't an invasion.  

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

You are assuming it is true based on only the propaganda texts of the Jews, I'm assuming its distorted and has issues.

Granted, but i am basing it on supported context of the source.  Your support for a landgrab... can we say that's anything more than an assumption as well?

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

We'd have to establish the propaganda spewed by the Jews made it to other nations and was somehow documented. What we have is a claim that the Jews committed genocide but we don't have the bodies for proof. Nor do we have any other nation mentioning the Jews killed off these particular people either.

The Jews were very well known by surrounding communities and the God they followed was understood to be known just as much as the Jews were aware of the gods the other cultures were following.  

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Multiple sources do help people agree on what may have occurred. Here we have a 1 sided account.

with many separate unrelated authors.  Just because the books have been compiled centuries later doesn't actually make it 1 side.  Granted the writers were believers, but then again, those believers just like others didn't write much if anything about other followings.  Why would any others do the same?  Especially if it makes their own god look inferior. 

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

I'll try to go on into the next chapter this weekend.

sounds good... we need to move on.  There's not enough information here to dwell on it.


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pauljohntheskeptic wrote:1

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

1 Samuel 20

The story begins with David fleeing from Naioth soon after he encounters Jonathan. He has no idea what it is he has done to make Saul wish him dead. He asks Jonathan at length about this. Jonathan told him his father did nothing without his knowledge. David told him perhaps his father did not tell him because he knew of their affection for one another. Jonathan asked him what he wanted him to do. They come up with a plan to see if Saul really wanted him dead.

David does not go to the king's table on the new moon, his seat is left empty but Saul says nothing. The following day he again is not there but Saul asks where he is. Jonathan tells Saul the story that David is with his brethren giving sacrifice. Saul informs Jonathan he knows that he is close with David and that isn't true. He tells Jonathan if David lives then he would never be king so he must die.

Jonathan leaves the table and goes out into the field shooting arrows such that the lad with him had to retrieve them from beyond him. This was a message to David that Saul wanted him dead. After the lad leaves David came out of the fields and Jonathan and David wept, kissed and departed one another so the David would be safe.

A detailed story which may be real or may not be. There is no way to tell.

Chapter 21

 David flees to Nob to Ahimelech the priest who is afraid of him. The priest asked him why he was alone. David replied he was on the king's business which no other man should know. David notices the priest has 5 loaves of bread and asked for them. It is the holy bread called the showbread however and the priest informs David of this. David told him it would be OK as the vessels of the young men were holy when they departed. The priest gave him the bread.

One of the servants of Saul was also there that day, who was delayed by the god. He was Doeg the Edomite who was the chief of the herdmen of Saul's. David asked the priest if there was a sword or spear there. The priest told him the sword of Goliath that David had taken was there. David told the priest to give him the sword and he then fled because of his fear of Saul. David goes to Achish and the king of Gath. When David gets to Gath he pretends he is mad as they recognized him as a great warrior and he was afraid. The king questioned don't I have enough madmen already that I need to bring him into my house.

The incident of the showbread is later used by Jesus in the NT in a discussion when he was questioned about his disciples working on the Sabbath by picking corn. It is the Jewish justification that some laws can be suspended in order to save or sustain life.

Again, a detailed story that may be factual or may be fictional, who can tell.

 

Simply put.  It is hard to tell.  It's why I keep referencing to context.   These stories are included because they fill in gaps in a timeline.  There were historians and theologists among other who have come to a conclusion that these stories are credible enough to put in the compilation.  


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caposkia

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

However, the myths and stories have not been taken seriously until recent times. Nearly all scientists and people prior to the 20th century did not believe in meteorites for example . Thomas Jefferson did not consider it possible for stones to fall from the sky. Yet they do so don't they. A lack of science caused this error.

right, and without an understanding of why rocks would fall from the sky or how that's possible, your state of mind would be that it isn't possible because no one could throw a rock hard enough to get it to fly around in space.  it's all about your state of mind.  The state of mind today is focused on what we can see and touch, therefore, it's not possible to have anything exist that can't be observed in the same manner.  (that's the mindset)

Which is why I'm a skeptic. Perhaps explanations will come someday why the ancients all were so astounded by the world attributing things to gods, magic and Sci-Fi beyond just being ignorant of Science. Or perhaps it was because of their lack of knowledge. Until something indicates otherwise, I'll stay with science and patiently wait for more information rather than taking the approach of the ancients and attribute the unknown to a god.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

See this link from an author on the subject: http://www.eridu.co.uk/Author/atlantis/greek.html

yea, there's  a reason why they teach cataclysms in seminaries... at least good, non-bias ones.

All things have explanations, even myths and legends. What they are is very difficult to grasp thousands of years later.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

When one considers all of these stories, myths, and legends including those in the OT, there really may be a physical cause behind some of them. That the people didn't understand the cause and so attributed it to a god is due to lack of science and knowledge. This is understandable. It however is not a reason to suddenly conclude Enki or Yahweh were real gods.

no, based just on the history, you shouldn't conclude such.  it's not enough information.  As i expressed to you a long while back, there are many reasons why i believe, History being a part of it, but there are many other categories.  combining the information from all of them leaves me with no other conclusion.

Which is our difference. All my reasons including history leads me to conclude the god beliefs are not true as propagated and the real explanation could be either lack of knowledge or something else entirely not related to a god.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

So yes I know it takes years to study ancient texts, and most are dismissive of what they find because their understanding of the ancients is lacking and the way the ancients conveyed their information was perhaps altered by their own wonderment of the events. If they didn't understand what they saw or experienced just how are we going to understans what they are trying to describe? When they didn't get it, it was Ra, Enki, Zeus or Yahweh that caused it.

So, how can we really tell what happened? We may never know for sure.

 

 

from that perspective alone and with the understanding that history is completely reliant on the 'word' of another person who may have misunderstood what they were conveying, no history can be guaranteed.  We can have a good perspective on what likely happened, but no one can say definitely except for the eye witnesses.

Sometimes we just have to wait and see. Perhaps longer than our own lives. Was there a shooter on the grassy knoll? Did the AirForce capture a UFO in 1947?

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

 

The Bible does in fact include stories that come from Sumer, as in Tiamat found in the Psalms aka the twisty serpent. This story is also found in Canaanite stories. There were many gods named Ba'al and one from Canaan that had the same attributes as Yahweh, with the same consort as well. This is related to the Ugaritic gods, I can get more info for you when I find time. There are other stories from the much older civilzations such as Sumer that also have found their way into the OT. More on this as we encounter them.

sounds good

OK.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

What stories of "known fiction" have I mentioned?

i think it was just a general reference to particular fictional characters as described.  I didn't intend to put words in your mouth.  sorry for the confusion.

OK

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Are the Greek stories fiction? Are the stories of Sumer? How do you know? I do not dismiss that Jason, Hercules and the others from the possibility of once having been real persons at some point. They may have been, but the stories have been so distorted over time one can't tell what actually happened. In the same way, that's what I've been trying to get across to you in regard to  the OT stories. And you have seen and agreed to many places for at least the numbers, events, and more. My point is, why is the magic or unrealistic events in the OT to be considered real, and those of the others are from common fictional characters and are not real. Perhaps all are distorted and not true. As these things don't seem to occur in our world, it seems very likely that the ancients misunderstood, and then we misunderstood what they were saying as well.

I see what you're saying and i understand your perspective... and from solely a historical perspective without other angles to look at, I'd have to categorize these stories among the rest of ancient history due to the reasons detailed. 

A few differences using historical congruency is the progression of translation of the Biblical stories in comparison to other stories translated over the same extended time period.  E.g.  manuscripts of the Bible over 1000 years has been compared and were noted to be almost identical, whereas most other ancient scripts when compared through 1000 years of handing down and translating haven't typically been as carefully translated.   Another thing with the Bible is The Bible itself was compiled much much later than the stories are dated and therefore the Bible is written and detailed by many many different authors, most of which never met each other let alone lived close together to compare notes, where typical historical myths seem to indicate an individual author or only a specific location in time.

Due to that information, i would still consider the reliability of these stories to be better than those of individual sources from a specific period of time.   

Actually the people who copied the Greek and Roman secular manuscripts were the same monks who copied the scriptures. Did they do a good job on both?

However, in the case of Sumerian clay tablets we have the originals, not copies. Our problems are related to understanding the syntax and meanings of 3000 or so BCE from their perspective. The same is true for Greek, Latin manuscripts and scriptures. Are we really looking at these in the way the people did in 600 BCE? Perhaps we have misunderstanding in many ways of everything.

Time will tell. Or not.

 

 

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

OK then. The information in 1 Samuel was presented as if it occurred. Did it? Who can tell, I can't anymore than any other ancient story. The problem for me is the storyline has major flaws in it. Like I said, I write that off to the storytellers deviating it as they told it.

the problem is, it's difficult on either side to conclude validity or not based on the "major flaws" you are referencing to.  Those major flaws are congruent with stories of that time due to lack of education and sources.

That's my point. Is it another legendary hero story as with other ancients, seems to be doesn't it.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

You take a concession that a small group of a few hundred "could have" come from Egypt and make that into just changed numbers. There could also have been no one that came from Egypt at all as well.

There have been included with these stories things attributed to the god, manna, water from rocks, plaques in Egypt, the Red Sea, the stories of Jacob, Abraham, Sodom,  the supposed flood, all of which have marginal basis. So no, it's not just the numbers of the Hebrews being claimed in the millions or hundreds of thousands when there "may have been" a few hundred. It's all of it.

Angels developed wings after the Jews were captives in Babylon. See the artifacts of the Babylonians and Assyrians. Do a Google search on Assyrian, Babylonian artifacts with wings, also try searching on just images too.

This link has a few, you can find more elsewhere - http://www.crystalinks.com/sumergods.html

There was a program on Discovery Channel about this some time last year in regard to how angels developed wings. I think the same program showed the halo developed from Mithra for Jesus and the saints.

I'm not sure if that link explains their origin, but does give a good history.  Thanks for the good links btw.  I'll have to look into the discovery program. 

you're welcome.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

There are names mentioned, see wiki - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jason

sounds like they both could be real.  Part of what supports David is the detailed geneology.  I have to admit, i haven't found the time to look into it yet.  

OK

 

 

____________________________________________________________
"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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caposkia

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

It is generally accepted that all people are descended from Africa based on DNA.

Eastern, north eastern to be exact.  yup.

OK then.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

As the god of the Jews was a regional god, not known universally world wide I would tend to disagree that he was ever known to them. In the far older civilizations far different stories are told, read the link in the OP at ETCSL or Google the Sumerian gods. The clay tablets of the Sumerians seem to disagree that the god of the Jews was ever known to them and their writings pre-date any date you can choose for the Hebrews. This is also true for the Egyptians.

As far as our history can trace, He is a regional God... but then again, no one has been able to trace history back to a specific origin, only assumption that it started in the general area that happens to be the same location that DNA suggests humanity started.  All we know is that YHWH is the god of the Jews and therefore we look at the Jews and their location to suggest that this god is regional.  Consider for a moment that before there were Jews, gods still existed and it is understood that this particular god was followed.  I guess we'd have to ask where the "Jewish" focus came from, understandably Israel, but from what exactly. 

As I mentioned before Yahweh was a Canaanite god as was El and is discussed as possibly being El's son in Canaanite myths. Sometimes Yahweh and Ba'al may be confused or be the same god. Gods of thunder, etc.. they have the same consort in some cases.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

No, I wouldn't exist.

I rest my case.  The choices of your ancestors determined what happens to you.

What if your mother decided to go out with the guy across the street and not the guy she met at the bar, who she eventually married.

What if you turned on the wrong road and didn't notice the bridge was out as you crossed it at 70 mph?

What if you were in the WTC having brunch on 9-11-01?

What if . . . ?

See the point?

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Saddam was the largest part of the problem just like Hitler was, though Goring, Himmler, and Goebbels were also a large part of the problem. So too were Saddam's son's actively involved like Himmler and Goebbels. It's not a generational thing here but a group of evil men taking advantage of others.

ok, but then why kill them?  Why not capture them and try them just like we did with their father?

instead of going back and forth with this, my point is we still did ourselves what we're complaining about in the Bible.  It seems to me that if he happened to have grandchildren that were adults, they would have been targets too.  Of course we can speculate, but all in all, the family was going to follow in their parents footsteps and that was understood.  

Due to lack of evidence, we can make assumptions either way about the bible stories, but It's my understanding due to the context of other situations that were detailed better that this particular generation had similar plans.  It's a deduction from context and that's as far as we can go unless we can find some other source that has more details than we are aware of at this point.

Perhaps Saddam and his family are a bad choice to discuss.

His sons decided to fight it out and not be taken - see - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Uday_Hussein

"Acting on a tip from an unidentified Iraqi, the blocking element from the 101st Airborne Division provided security while the Task Force 20 operators attempted to apprehend the inhabitants of the house. After U.S. troops hotwired Uday's Lamborghini[citation needed], he revealed himself, upon which a gunfight ensued."

In the case of Osama bin Laden's family, siblings, nephews and others they have not been killed or prosecuted have they?

see - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bin_Laden_family

So it's not as black and white as you suggest is it?

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

In that case, he should have killed Romulus and Remus. The Romans pretty much eradicated the Jews in the 1st and 2nd century.

That was after Christ right?  That would make a difference.  That's a whole discussion we'll get to at our retirement when we start the NT and discuss how the NT and OT tie together.

Romulus and Remus are the legendary founders of Rome, many many 100s of years before Jesus.

Rome as it developed also had many of those corners we discussed. Go right or left. Kill Julius Caesar or not. Stay a republic or allow a dictator.

You're right, we may not live to see the end of this discussion.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

I understand your position and do not concur. There aren't even stories of these people raiding the Jews. The Sea People aka the Philistines yes. If any group of the time period deserved a genocide based on the OT they did. However, no genocide of the Philistines occur.

i'm referring to the annihilations of people groups that didn't use the hand of the followers, but only God's actions directly.  We can speculate too who may have deserved annihilation and who may not have in the context, but we would have to consider a perspective that we don't know, which is the point that God would know them as well as we'd know our own children.  Understanding the intentions of the Biblical God, there would have been a reason for one and not the other.

My understanding of detailing an annihilation in the Bible at all is to express the wrath of God to those who read it and understand how powerful this God really is.  For followers, the details of why are comprehended as there was a good reason for it... like why we destroyed Saddam's children.  Can we back that up empirically?  Not any more than you could back up a land grab, but due to the context and of course the personal relationship that believers claim to have with this God, they know how he works and understand those actions would have been justified and we'd see so if we had all the details.

Seems to me as if it's just wasting time to continue debating the justification of the annihilation.  Due to lack of evidence on either side, we could never come to a sound conclusion it seems based solely on the focus of this forum. 

I agree the point of showing mass murder and genocide was a form of propaganda, whether it really happened or not does not matter. I don't think it did, if so it was nothing more than a village or 2.

Unlike many others I don't use the claimed OT genocide as indicative of the god's murderous ways, I see it as propaganda by the Jews and priests. See what will happen to you if you oppose the people of the god Yahweh, he will kill your descendants and erase your people from the world.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

We don't want to get into how inconsistent Yahweh is shown in the OT or we will be in for a major distraction.

agreed, it's a whole other discussion for another time... on our death beds after we finish this forum Eye-wink

Exactly.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Not really. Show me some burned villages in context. Some attacks, something.

Would Sodom and Gomorrah apply here, or not because it wasn't an invasion. 

1000 years or more too early, and no proof on them yet either. We already talked about them earlier.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

You are assuming it is true based on only the propaganda texts of the Jews, I'm assuming its distorted and has issues.

Granted, but i am basing it on supported context of the source.  Your support for a landgrab... can we say that's anything more than an assumption as well?

I'm reading the landgrab in context as later on there are still living Amelkites mentioned in the OT. It just reads like one with the typical ancient explanation of the god says to kill them all, similar to other cultures and even modern times when the German people were the exalted master race and did landgrabs.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

We'd have to establish the propaganda spewed by the Jews made it to other nations and was somehow documented. What we have is a claim that the Jews committed genocide but we don't have the bodies for proof. Nor do we have any other nation mentioning the Jews killed off these particular people either.

The Jews were very well known by surrounding communities and the God they followed was understood to be known just as much as the Jews were aware of the gods the other cultures were following. 

And still no bodies or ruins.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Multiple sources do help people agree on what may have occurred. Here we have a 1 sided account.

with many separate unrelated authors.  Just because the books have been compiled centuries later doesn't actually make it 1 side.  Granted the writers were believers, but then again, those believers just like others didn't write much if anything about other followings.  Why would any others do the same?  Especially if it makes their own god look inferior.

Still 1 sided in that the books support the propaganda of the priests and the beliefs. In some of the interactions with other nations we will get a chance to compare different cultures propaganda, as with Damascus, the Assyrians, the Egyptians and others once the 2 nations of Israel and Judah  pop out into the ancient world.

 

 

____________________________________________________________
"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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caposkia

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

1 Samuel 20

The story begins with David fleeing from Naioth soon after he encounters Jonathan. He has no idea what it is he has done to make Saul wish him dead. He asks Jonathan at length about this. Jonathan told him his father did nothing without his knowledge. David told him perhaps his father did not tell him because he knew of their affection for one another. Jonathan asked him what he wanted him to do. They come up with a plan to see if Saul really wanted him dead.

David does not go to the king's table on the new moon, his seat is left empty but Saul says nothing. The following day he again is not there but Saul asks where he is. Jonathan tells Saul the story that David is with his brethren giving sacrifice. Saul informs Jonathan he knows that he is close with David and that isn't true. He tells Jonathan if David lives then he would never be king so he must die.

Jonathan leaves the table and goes out into the field shooting arrows such that the lad with him had to retrieve them from beyond him. This was a message to David that Saul wanted him dead. After the lad leaves David came out of the fields and Jonathan and David wept, kissed and departed one another so the David would be safe.

A detailed story which may be real or may not be. There is no way to tell.

Chapter 21

 David flees to Nob to Ahimelech the priest who is afraid of him. The priest asked him why he was alone. David replied he was on the king's business which no other man should know. David notices the priest has 5 loaves of bread and asked for them. It is the holy bread called the showbread however and the priest informs David of this. David told him it would be OK as the vessels of the young men were holy when they departed. The priest gave him the bread.

One of the servants of Saul was also there that day, who was delayed by the god. He was Doeg the Edomite who was the chief of the herdmen of Saul's. David asked the priest if there was a sword or spear there. The priest told him the sword of Goliath that David had taken was there. David told the priest to give him the sword and he then fled because of his fear of Saul. David goes to Achish and the king of Gath. When David gets to Gath he pretends he is mad as they recognized him as a great warrior and he was afraid. The king questioned don't I have enough madmen already that I need to bring him into my house.

The incident of the showbread is later used by Jesus in the NT in a discussion when he was questioned about his disciples working on the Sabbath by picking corn. It is the Jewish justification that some laws can be suspended in order to save or sustain life.

Again, a detailed story that may be factual or may be fictional, who can tell.

 

Simply put.  It is hard to tell.  It's why I keep referencing to context.   These stories are included because they fill in gaps in a timeline.  There were historians and theologists among other who have come to a conclusion that these stories are credible enough to put in the compilation.  

If you read all of the Greek legends in regard to Hercules, Jason, Achilles or others in context you arrive at the same point as with the Jews OT stories in regard to David. Can't really tell what was going on.

Fiction or based in reality somehow?

Can't tell what was the original intention.

 

 

____________________________________________________________
"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:

Actually the people who copied the Greek and Roman secular manuscripts were the same monks who copied the scriptures. Did they do a good job on both?

It is well known by historians that the scriptures were well guarded scrolls.  The Bible acknowledges that specific scribes were hired to record and translate in Jeremiah 8:8.  The link below seems to describe well how careful translations and recordings of the scrolls were handled.  due to this information, it is understood that they did a good job and where they didn't it was corrected.  

http://www.kenscustom.com/bible/authen.html

Though the author is Christian himself, he tends to take a neutral approach to this particular page.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

However, in the case of Sumerian clay tablets we have the originals, not copies. Our problems are related to understanding the syntax and meanings of 3000 or so BCE from their perspective. The same is true for Greek, Latin manuscripts and scriptures. Are we really looking at these in the way the people did in 600 BCE? Perhaps we have misunderstanding in many ways of everything.

Time will tell. Or not.

Likely.  the Dead Sea Scrolls shed some light on what we were misunderstanding and those errors have since been corrected.   Time I'm sure will reveal more.

 

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

OK then. The information in 1 Samuel was presented as if it occurred. Did it? Who can tell, I can't anymore than any other ancient story. The problem for me is the storyline has major flaws in it. Like I said, I write that off to the storytellers deviating it as they told it.

deviation of a happening and a complete fabrication are completely different... So far the major flaws you have presented have not changed the point of the story.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

the problem is, it's difficult on either side to conclude validity or not based on the "major flaws" you are referencing to.  Those major flaws are congruent with stories of that time due to lack of education and sources.

That's my point. Is it another legendary hero story as with other ancients, seems to be doesn't it.

as long as you apply that logic to all of history from that time.  My point was in reference to all of history from that time and back.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

You take a concession that a small group of a few hundred "could have" come from Egypt and make that into just changed numbers. There could also have been no one that came from Egypt at all as well.

nah, Geneologies in general don't support that angle.  

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

There have been included with these stories things attributed to the god, manna, water from rocks, plaques in Egypt, the Red Sea, the stories of Jacob, Abraham, Sodom,  the supposed flood, all of which have marginal basis. So no, it's not just the numbers of the Hebrews being claimed in the millions or hundreds of thousands when there "may have been" a few hundred. It's all of it.

Ok, you're taking into consideration the events that took place as well.  A flood is supported in other cultures along with other Biblical claims.  Some of the other ones like water coming from a rock or manna from the sky would be like trying to prove whether Joe Smith from 700 B.C. greeted his neighbor every morning or if he missed a few mornings.    If the God of the Bible is real, all of that likely occurred.  Therefore the focus comes back to God.  Other events have a possible scientific or geological explanation like water from a rock or the parting of the Reed Sea and even Sodom, not to discredit a hand of God taking place, but to suggest the happenings could have occurred logically.  

The stories of individuals are always confined to the cultures of the individuals unless they had major impact on other cultures or religions.  

By history alone, not taking any other avenue into consideration for reasoning, sure, i can see why this all would be hard to accept... Taking away the perspective of the writer and looking at how any of it could be possible with exception of some random extremes.. the only one so far i have no explanation for is manna from the sky.

The fact that they have even marginal basis in history should suggest to you that they're worth looking into further.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:


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pauljohntheskeptic

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Actually the people who copied the Greek and Roman secular manuscripts were the same monks who copied the scriptures. Did they do a good job on both?

It is well known by historians that the scriptures were well guarded scrolls.  The Bible acknowledges that specific scribes were hired to record and translate in Jeremiah 8:8.  The link below seems to describe well how careful translations and recordings of the scrolls were handled.  due to this information, it is understood that they did a good job and where they didn't it was corrected.  

http://www.kenscustom.com/bible/authen.html

Though the author is Christian himself, he tends to take a neutral approach to this particular page.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

However, in the case of Sumerian clay tablets we have the originals, not copies. Our problems are related to understanding the syntax and meanings of 3000 or so BCE from their perspective. The same is true for Greek, Latin manuscripts and scriptures. Are we really looking at these in the way the people did in 600 BCE? Perhaps we have misunderstanding in many ways of everything.

Time will tell. Or not.

Likely.  the Dead Sea Scrolls shed some light on what we were misunderstanding and those errors have since been corrected.   Time I'm sure will reveal more.

 

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

OK then. The information in 1 Samuel was presented as if it occurred. Did it? Who can tell, I can't anymore than any other ancient story. The problem for me is the storyline has major flaws in it. Like I said, I write that off to the storytellers deviating it as they told it.

deviation of a happening and a complete fabrication are completely different... So far the major flaws you have presented have not changed the point of the story.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

the problem is, it's difficult on either side to conclude validity or not based on the "major flaws" you are referencing to.  Those major flaws are congruent with stories of that time due to lack of education and sources.

That's my point. Is it another legendary hero story as with other ancients, seems to be doesn't it.

as long as you apply that logic to all of history from that time.  My point was in reference to all of history from that time and back.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

You take a concession that a small group of a few hundred "could have" come from Egypt and make that into just changed numbers. There could also have been no one that came from Egypt at all as well.

nah, Geneologies in general don't support that angle.  

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

There have been included with these stories things attributed to the god, manna, water from rocks, plaques in Egypt, the Red Sea, the stories of Jacob, Abraham, Sodom,  the supposed flood, all of which have marginal basis. So no, it's not just the numbers of the Hebrews being claimed in the millions or hundreds of thousands when there "may have been" a few hundred. It's all of it.

Ok, you're taking into consideration the events that took place as well.  A flood is supported in other cultures along with other Biblical claims.  Some of the other ones like water coming from a rock or manna from the sky would be like trying to prove whether Joe Smith from 700 B.C. greeted his neighbor every morning or if he missed a few mornings.    If the God of the Bible is real, all of that likely occurred.  Therefore the focus comes back to God.  Other events have a possible scientific or geological explanation like water from a rock or the parting of the Reed Sea and even Sodom, not to discredit a hand of God taking place, but to suggest the happenings could have occurred logically.  

The stories of individuals are always confined to the cultures of the individuals unless they had major impact on other cultures or religions.  

By history alone, not taking any other avenue into consideration for reasoning, sure, i can see why this all would be hard to accept... Taking away the perspective of the writer and looking at how any of it could be possible with exception of some random extremes.. the only one so far i have no explanation for is manna from the sky.

The fact that they have even marginal basis in history should suggest to you that they're worth looking into further.

 


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pauljohntheskeptic wrote:As

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

As I mentioned before Yahweh was a Canaanite god as was El and is discussed as possibly being El's son in Canaanite myths. Sometimes Yahweh and Ba'al may be confused or be the same god. Gods of thunder, etc.. they have the same consort in some cases.

I'm not disputing that, but reaching even further back, who was the Canaanite God before Yahweh?  And where did the Yahweh idea come from?  The God of the Bible is understood to be the God of humanity... of every culture.  There are historical strings that suggest the first belief of Asian cultures way back before the history we're more familiar with was this same God as well.  It begs the question again what started it all.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

I rest my case.  The choices of your ancestors determined what happens to you.

What if your mother decided to go out with the guy across the street and not the guy she met at the bar, who she eventually married.

What if you turned on the wrong road and didn't notice the bridge was out as you crossed it at 70 mph?

What if you were in the WTC having brunch on 9-11-01?

What if . . . ?

See the point?

absolutely, the choices of our ancestors have determined what happens to us.  

This further confirms my perspective.  I had a brief discussion in my never ending forum about how choices have caused what we know today bad and good.  The basis of the discussion was why sicknesses/deformities, etc...  Science explains them as malfunctions in DNA.  Speculation only determines why.  Due to some of the speculation, it can be plausibly concluded due to the "butterfly effect" that minimal choices made over 1000's and 1000's of years can cause sicknesses and deformities in certain DNA strands.  Due to the needed process of 1000's of years it is not empirically proven through science, but it is theoretically accepted.  It's not choices our ancestors may have known were bad at the time, but it caused a chain reaction that eventually lead to... well you name the ailment.  

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

His sons decided to fight it out and not be taken - see - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Uday_Hussein

I'm referencing to the intital attack, which was undestood to be on a building that likely held Saddams sons... 

this may not be the best choice of topic angle.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

"Acting on a tip from an unidentified Iraqi, the blocking element from the 101st Airborne Division provided security while the Task Force 20 operators attempted to apprehend the inhabitants of the house. After U.S. troops hotwired Uday's Lamborghini[citation needed], he revealed himself, upon which a gunfight ensued."

In the case of Osama bin Laden's family, siblings, nephews and others they have not been killed or prosecuted have they?

Do we have access to them to do so?

Also, it is clear that his family has completely disowned him and that was made publicly clear... though i wonder if it would have been so publicly mentioned before the Saddam incident... who knows.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

So it's not as black and white as you suggest is it?

i'm not suggesting it's black and white.  Due to the discussion that has prevailed from mentioning a modern day incident, it should show that it's obviously not black and white and therefore for us to speculate on a situation so far back in history with the same mind of justification is near impossible.

 

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

In that case, he should have killed Romulus and Remus. The Romans pretty much eradicated the Jews in the 1st and 2nd century.......

Romulus and Remus are the legendary founders of Rome, many many 100s of years before Jesus.

Maybe, but then again, there must be a reason why he didn't if in fact he exists.  Again, it would be speculation only as to why he didn't.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Would Sodom and Gomorrah apply here, or not because it wasn't an invasion. 

1000 years or more too early, and no proof on them yet either. We already talked about them earlier.

there are geological events in the areas that are understood to be locations of Sodom and Gomorrah.  No proof, but likely scenarios through geology and through that, reasoning for no proof of them existing... or being known yet.

its beyond our conversation

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

I'm reading the landgrab in context as later on there are still living Amelkites mentioned in the OT. It just reads like one with the typical ancient explanation of the god says to kill them all, similar to other cultures and even modern times when the German people were the exalted master race and did landgrabs.

ok.  

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

And still no bodies or ruins.

Geologists reason this.  Beyond that, we have to consider the millions of bodies and many many ruins in history that are accepted as historical fact that have yet to be found.  

Am I right to say then that nothing happened that is beyond our current knowledge?

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Still 1 sided in that the books support the propaganda of the priests and the beliefs. In some of the interactions with other nations we will get a chance to compare different cultures propaganda, as with Damascus, the Assyrians, the Egyptians and others once the 2 nations of Israel and Judah  pop out into the ancient world.

 

With that reasoning, everything that supports anything is 1 sided... anything opposing anything is 1 sided.  

they pop out according to what is written, not by other standards.  The genealogies are detailed enough now to give better reasoning to the existence of many unknown cultures.


pauljohntheskeptic
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caposkia

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Actually the people who copied the Greek and Roman secular manuscripts were the same monks who copied the scriptures. Did they do a good job on both?

It is well known by historians that the scriptures were well guarded scrolls.  The Bible acknowledges that specific scribes were hired to record and translate in Jeremiah 8:8.  The link below seems to describe well how careful translations and recordings of the scrolls were handled.  due to this information, it is understood that they did a good job and where they didn't it was corrected.  

http://www.kenscustom.com/bible/authen.html

Though the author is Christian himself, he tends to take a neutral approach to this particular page.

My question really related to the period when the Church aka RCC through it's monks were preserving ancient writing. As indicated in Bart Ehrman's book, Misquoting Jesus, perhaps not so completely perfect. I was also asking how accurate these monks were in preserving the secular documents. Did they do just as good a job on those?

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

However, in the case of Sumerian clay tablets we have the originals, not copies. Our problems are related to understanding the syntax and meanings of 3000 or so BCE from their perspective. The same is true for Greek, Latin manuscripts and scriptures. Are we really looking at these in the way the people did in 600 BCE? Perhaps we have misunderstanding in many ways of everything.

Time will tell. Or not.

Likely.  the Dead Sea Scrolls shed some light on what we were misunderstanding and those errors have since been corrected.   Time I'm sure will reveal more.

Always does. The thing I tell most of the believers that jump to conclusions with insufficient evidence is to wait and see, more will be known later. In your case you already know this.

 

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

OK then. The information in 1 Samuel was presented as if it occurred. Did it? Who can tell, I can't anymore than any other ancient story. The problem for me is the storyline has major flaws in it. Like I said, I write that off to the storytellers deviating it as they told it.

deviation of a happening and a complete fabrication are completely different... So far the major flaws you have presented have not changed the point of the story.

We see the point of the story (stories) very differently though.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

caposkia wrote:

the problem is, it's difficult on either side to conclude validity or not based on the "major flaws" you are referencing to.  Those major flaws are congruent with stories of that time due to lack of education and sources.

That's my point. Is it another legendary hero story as with other ancients, seems to be doesn't it.

as long as you apply that logic to all of history from that time.  My point was in reference to all of history from that time and back.

One wonders just how much is legend and how much was real in many accounts of all history. As with today, leaders and supposed heroes had agendas. Many had their own versions of publicists or propaganda agents. This is true especially in regard to kings and conquerors.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

You take a concession that a small group of a few hundred "could have" come from Egypt and make that into just changed numbers. There could also have been no one that came from Egypt at all as well.

nah, Geneologies in general don't support that angle. 

See the Sumerian Kings lists that go hundreds of thousands of years. Are genealogies and kings list always supportable. Obviously not or we are missing something very important, which is always possible.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

There have been included with these stories things attributed to the god, manna, water from rocks, plaques in Egypt, the Red Sea, the stories of Jacob, Abraham, Sodom,  the supposed flood, all of which have marginal basis. So no, it's not just the numbers of the Hebrews being claimed in the millions or hundreds of thousands when there "may have been" a few hundred. It's all of it.

Ok, you're taking into consideration the events that took place as well.  A flood is supported in other cultures along with other Biblical claims.  Some of the other ones like water coming from a rock or manna from the sky would be like trying to prove whether Joe Smith from 700 B.C. greeted his neighbor every morning or if he missed a few mornings.    If the God of the Bible is real, all of that likely occurred.  Therefore the focus comes back to God.  Other events have a possible scientific or geological explanation like water from a rock or the parting of the Reed Sea and even Sodom, not to discredit a hand of God taking place, but to suggest the happenings could have occurred logically.  

The stories of individuals are always confined to the cultures of the individuals unless they had major impact on other cultures or religions.  

By history alone, not taking any other avenue into consideration for reasoning, sure, i can see why this all would be hard to accept... Taking away the perspective of the writer and looking at how any of it could be possible with exception of some random extremes.. the only one so far i have no explanation for is manna from the sky.

The fact that they have even marginal basis in history should suggest to you that they're worth looking into further.

We talked about the Flood before. I think the Hebrew version is a modified one from Sumer. If Abram came from Ur or Sumer he and/or his family would know the legends of Sumer. Even if Abe is not a real person, many others migrated from Mesopotamia (Sumer or Iraq) and brought their stories, gods and legends along.

Stories can be legends or misunderstood events regardless or not if there is an administrator for our spiral arm in this galaxy or as you say god. I disagree that if such an administrator exists that the legends are true. Ancient man was mystified by many things and the stories and legends from all over the world show that if you don't understand it, it must be some sort of god who caused it. Just something to think about.

 

 

 

____________________________________________________________
"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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caposkia

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

As I mentioned before Yahweh was a Canaanite god as was El and is discussed as possibly being El's son in Canaanite myths. Sometimes Yahweh and Ba'al may be confused or be the same god. Gods of thunder, etc.. they have the same consort in some cases.

I'm not disputing that, but reaching even further back, who was the Canaanite God before Yahweh?  And where did the Yahweh idea come from?  The God of the Bible is understood to be the God of humanity... of every culture.  There are historical strings that suggest the first belief of Asian cultures way back before the history we're more familiar with was this same God as well.  It begs the question again what started it all.

I think I gave you some links a while back on the study of ancient god beliefs in the Middle East, Mesopotamia, Palestine and Eqypt. I have some books on the subject as well. Let me know if you need them again. When you refer to Asiatic cultures, do you mean China, India or Japan. Those who lived in Palestine, Iraq and Iran were called Asiatics by the Egyptians.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

caposkia wrote:

 

I rest my case.  The choices of your ancestors determined what happens to you.

What if your mother decided to go out with the guy across the street and not the guy she met at the bar, who she eventually married.

What if you turned on the wrong road and didn't notice the bridge was out as you crossed it at 70 mph?

What if you were in the WTC having brunch on 9-11-01?

What if . . . ?

See the point?

absolutely, the choices of our ancestors have determined what happens to us.  

This further confirms my perspective.  I had a brief discussion in my never ending forum about how choices have caused what we know today bad and good.  The basis of the discussion was why sicknesses/deformities, etc...  Science explains them as malfunctions in DNA.  Speculation only determines why.  Due to some of the speculation, it can be plausibly concluded due to the "butterfly effect" that minimal choices made over 1000's and 1000's of years can cause sicknesses and deformities in certain DNA strands.  Due to the needed process of 1000's of years it is not empirically proven through science, but it is theoretically accepted.  It's not choices our ancestors may have known were bad at the time, but it caused a chain reaction that eventually lead to... well you name the ailment. 

If you look again at what I said, many of the choices are yours to make. Go right or left. Take a job or not.

Granted you are you because your parents met. What happens later on is on you.

Your line of reasoning also applies to the consequences of actions done in the past, by religions of all persuasions.

1-What if Pope Urban II did not call a crusade? Would Christians and Muslims be at each others throats.

2-What if Pope not so Innocent III had not persecuted the Cathars. What if he had not called the 4th Crusade that went against Byzantine Constantinople?

The 1st Crusade created hatred that still lasts to this day. The supposed representative of Jesus on Earth called a war basically to save the Holyland of the god. In the process the death count was extremely high. Antagonism generated towards Christians just from Ma'arat Al Numan is still remembered by Muslims today. Christians are the god's agents? Not as far as the Muslims in Palestine are concerned who know about the real story of how vile the Christians were.

If the views of the Cathars had survived and the Church had not imposed god in their way on Europe, what would be different?

If the 4th Crusade had not weakened the Byzantines, would Turkey be Muslim today?

What if the Catholics had settled all of America using the Latin Vulgate as a Bible not the KJV. What would the US be like?

What if the Spanish had not killed millions in America just because they believed in  a different kind of god and had something worth stealing?

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

His sons decided to fight it out and not be taken - see - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Uday_Hussein

I'm referencing to the intital attack, which was understood to be on a building that likely held Saddams sons... 

this may not be the best choice of topic angle.

I don't think it's a very good example at all.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

"Acting on a tip from an unidentified Iraqi, the blocking element from the 101st Airborne Division provided security while the Task Force 20 operators attempted to apprehend the inhabitants of the house. After U.S. troops hotwired Uday's Lamborghini[citation needed], he revealed himself, upon which a gunfight ensued."

In the case of Osama bin Laden's family, siblings, nephews and others they have not been killed or prosecuted have they?

Do we have access to them to do so?

Also, it is clear that his family has completely disowned him and that was made publicly clear... though i wonder if it would have been so publicly mentioned before the Saddam incident... who knows.

Yes the bin Laden family is very large and some live in the USA. Many disowned him early on even before the 1st attack at WTC.

caposkia wrote:

 

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

So it's not as black and white as you suggest is it?

i'm not suggesting it's black and white.  Due to the discussion that has prevailed from mentioning a modern day incident, it should show that it's obviously not black and white and therefore for us to speculate on a situation so far back in history with the same mind of justification is near impossible.

But you concluded from "context" that the Amalekites got justice from your god for their previous actions of their ancestors. So you hold the people to be guilty, therefore black and white.

My view is at best it was propaganda if true at all. The Saul adventure should be held as skeptical at best in many ways.

Normally most atheists will beat you up over this incident as the god ordering genocide. I don't as it's pretty obvious to me that it is propaganda and/or extreme exaggeration at best.

 

 

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

In that case, he should have killed Romulus and Remus. The Romans pretty much eradicated the Jews in the 1st and 2ND century.......

Romulus and Remus are the legendary founders of Rome, many many 100s of years before Jesus.

Maybe, but then again, there must be a reason why he didn't if in fact he exists.  Again, it would be speculation only as to why he didn't.

Apparently your god needed the Romans to kill Jesus.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

caposkia wrote:

Would Sodom and Gomorrah apply here, or not because it wasn't an invasion. 

1000 years or more too early, and no proof on them yet either. We already talked about them earlier.

there are geological events in the areas that are understood to be locations of Sodom and Gomorrah.  No proof, but likely scenarios through geology and through that, reasoning for no proof of them existing... or being known yet.

its beyond our conversation

I've seen a program on Discovery Channel or Science Channel where a comet came in and landed in the Alps. The resulting explosion in this scenario blew pieces back to Sodom and destroyed it. The incoming comet or asteroid was observed by a Sumerian or Assyrian astronomer who recorded it on a clay tablet which was found by archaeologists.

No god required.

There is supposedly a clay tablet with a financial transaction between Sodom or Gomorrah and another Akkadian city dated prior to 2200 BCE. Forget now where I read that.

 

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

And still no bodies or ruins.

Geologists reason this.  Beyond that, we have to consider the millions of bodies and many many ruins in history that are accepted as historical fact that have yet to be found.  

Am I right to say then that nothing happened that is beyond our current knowledge?

Much happened that is beyond our current knowledge. Wait and see, more will be known. We might not be here when it occurs though.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Still 1 sided in that the books support the propaganda of the priests and the beliefs. In some of the interactions with other nations we will get a chance to compare different cultures propaganda, as with Damascus, the Assyrians, the Egyptians and others once the 2 nations of Israel and Judah  pop out into the ancient world.

 

With that reasoning, everything that supports anything is 1 sided... anything opposing anything is 1 sided.  

they pop out according to what is written, not by other standards.  The genealogies are detailed enough now to give better reasoning to the existence of many unknown cultures.

Now you get it. Why simply accept a story from anyone in the past as true, just because it is in context. Accounts from other cultures add to perspective, they are very important to consider. Believers normally do not wish to bring in the relationships and perspectives of any other culture that sees the events in a different way. In many cases we will never know what really happened, though unreasonable magical stories should be held in a skeptical view.

Israel and Judah are very obviously countries after the time of Solomon. Other cultures do discuss them from there on. Israel is the dominating country and Judah is the wanna be.

 

 

____________________________________________________________
"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.


redneF
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caposkia wrote: It is well

caposkia wrote:
It is well known by historians that the scriptures were well guarded scrolls.  

That's irrelevant, to whether or not the stories themselves are pure fabrications, or equivocations.

caposkia wrote:
The Bible acknowledges that specific scribes were hired to record and translate in Jeremiah 8:8.  The link below seems to describe well how careful translations and recordings of the scrolls were handled.  due to this information, it is understood that they did a good job and where they didn't it was corrected.  

Oh, the storybook itself claims that it's not just a storybook?

That's irrelevant, to whether or not the stories themselves are pure fabrications, or equivocations.

caposkia wrote:
Though the author is Christian himself, he tends to take a neutral approach to this particular page.

Doesn't matter if he was a double jointed Jew in a wheelchair that chain smokes cigars, and who also happens to be a vegetarian.

That's irrelevant, to whether or not the stories themselves are pure fabrications, or equivocations.

 

You're just wasting bandwidth with these irrelevant details...

I keep asking myself " Are they just playin' stupid, or are they just plain stupid?..."

"To explain the unknown by the known is a logical procedure; to explain the known by the unknown is a form of theological lunacy" : David Brooks

" Only on the subject of God can smart people still imagine that they reap the fruits of human intelligence even as they plow them under." : Sam Harris


redneF
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caposkia wrote:The God of

caposkia wrote:

The God of the Bible is understood to be the God of humanity... of every culture.  

No.

False.

Patently false.

You are lying.

Bold faced lying, about what you believe is accurate.

 

You have completed undermined yourself as an honest person, in any discussion that defends your position.

 

 

I keep asking myself " Are they just playin' stupid, or are they just plain stupid?..."

"To explain the unknown by the known is a logical procedure; to explain the known by the unknown is a form of theological lunacy" : David Brooks

" Only on the subject of God can smart people still imagine that they reap the fruits of human intelligence even as they plow them under." : Sam Harris


pauljohntheskeptic
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redneF wrote:caposkia wrote:

redneF wrote:

caposkia wrote:
It is well known by historians that the scriptures were well guarded scrolls.  

That's irrelevant, to whether or not the stories themselves are pure fabrications, or equivocations.

I have so mentioned that to him. Just because a story is preserved does not make it true. As the Sumerian stories are far older  that must make Enki the Lord of the Earth based on preserved texts. Very ancient god, vivid descriptions, actual preserved texts from 5,000 years ago, clearly Enki must be one of the real true gods.

 

redneF wrote:

caposkia wrote:
The Bible acknowledges that specific scribes were hired to record and translate in Jeremiah 8:8.  The link below seems to describe well how careful translations and recordings of the scrolls were handled.  due to this information, it is understood that they did a good job and where they didn't it was corrected.  

Oh, the storybook itself claims that it's not just a storybook?

That's irrelevant, to whether or not the stories themselves are pure fabrications, or equivocations.

All god stories of all cultures make such claims.

I usually present the Sumerian stories when faced with the book proves itself's claim.

redneF wrote:

caposkia wrote:
Though the author is Christian himself, he tends to take a neutral approach to this particular page.

Doesn't matter if he was a double jointed Jew in a wheelchair that chain smokes cigars, and who also happens to be a vegetarian.

That's irrelevant, to whether or not the stories themselves are pure fabrications, or equivocations.

True, what is the real question is: are these stories myths and legends like all others? In my opinion they are just like all the others differing only in the name of the god claimed to explain all that which ignorance of the time could not.

 

I see you are doing a one on one debate with Cap.

 

Have Fun.

 

 

____________________________________________________________
"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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1 Samuel 22

1 Samuel cot'd

Chapter 22

After David's attempt to gain asylum at Gath didn't work out he went to the cave of Adullam. His family heard he was there and joined him as did about 400 fighters, men not jet planes. He went to see the king of Moab and asked if his parents could stay there and be kept safe. After a while the prophet Gad told David to leave Moab and go back to Judah.

Meanwhile Saul like other crazy dictators/kings continued with his obsession in regard to David. He learned that David and his men had been discovered while he was sitting under a tree, spear in hand. He rants to those around him in regard to David, as in will David shower you with bribes and goodies as I do? Doeg the Edomite, who was with Saul’s officials said he saw one of  the priests of Nob give David food and Goliath's sword. Saul then sent for the priest and all the men of his family as well. When they arrive, Saul asked why they were conspiring against him with David. Ahimelek told Saul, who is like David who is your most trusted servant. Saul is further inflamed and orders him killed as well as all of his family. Saul's servants refuse to do so. He then ordered Doeg the Edomite to do it. The Edomite turned and then  killed eighty-five men of the Ahimelek family and put the town/village of Nob to the sword as well killing women, children and livestock as well as infants.

One of the sons of Ahimelek called Abiathar, escaped and joined David. David told Abiathar, you should stay with me and not be afraid. Saul who wants to kill you is also trying to kill me as well. He told him he'd be safe with him.

Once again this is a storyteller's account with no actual verification it actually occurred anymore than the Greek account of the Golden fleece or Medusa.

 

 

____________________________________________________________
"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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1 Samuel 23 and 24

1 Samuel Cont'd

Chapter 23

The storytelling continues, as in all good myths, folk legends and fairy tales:

David learns the Philistines had besieged and have looted the town/village of Keilah he asked of the god should I go there? The god told him to go. His men OTOH weren't very much interested in going out to bail out their fellow countrymen telling David, they were afraid as is, we'd be even more so against the Philistines. David once more asked of the god should he go save Keilah from the Philistines. Once more the god told him to go as the god promised to give the Philistines into David's hand. So David and his men went to Keilah and dispatched the Philistines saving the town.

Saul learns that David had gone to the aid of Keilah and plans to go there and besiege the town as he'll be trapped in a walled town. Saul puts forth the call to his forces to go attack David. Meanwhile David has found out about Saul's plan to attack him in Keilah and so asked the god will Saul come? Will the people of the town give us up to Saul. The god indicated that such would be the case. David turned tail and ran.  After Saul learns David left the town he didn't go there. David and his men keep moving from place to place so as not to be caught by Saul.

David was hiding at Horesh in the Desert of Ziph, and hears Saul was searching there. Jonathan comes to meet him and made a covenant with him as he understands David will be king and he'd be his 2nd. Meanwhile, the Ziphites went  to Saul and told him that David was hiding at Horesh, on the hill of Hakilah. He asked them to recon and get more information such that he could come against David.They were hiding in the Desert of Maon, in the Arabahand Saul learns of this. Saul begins his pursuit only to have to curtail it as the Philistines are raiding the land in a major way so Saul calls of his planned attack on David to meet the Philistines. David and his men then go to the strongholds of En Gedi.

Once again, storytelling at its best, no verification with as much validity as the story of Prometheus.

In other parts of the Bible it is said that no one directly talks with the god, so one wonders about these conversations David has.

Chapter 24

After Saul returns from fighting with the Philistines he is told David is in the Desert of En Gedi. Saul gathers 3,000 young men to go pursue him. On the way, Saul needs to go to the bathroom and stops in cave to relieve himself. David and his men are hidden in the back. David takes a knife and cuts off part of Saul's robe unseen. After Saul leaves the cave David calls to him and told him he could have killed him as the Lord had delivered Saul into his hands but he did not. He told him that Saul is the Lord's anointed and therefore he'd not harm him. He tells him the god would judge both their actions. He showed Saul the piece of robe he had cut off to prove he could have easily killed him. Saul is then remorseful and David swears an oath to him that he would never harm Saul's descendants. After, David and his men remain in the strongholds.

More storytelling without substantiation .

 

 

____________________________________________________________
"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 wrote:My

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

My question really related to the period when the Church aka RCC through it's monks were preserving ancient writing. As indicated in Bart Ehrman's book, Misquoting Jesus, perhaps not so completely perfect. I was also asking how accurate these monks were in preserving the secular documents. Did they do just as good a job on those?

we can question the integrity of the translators without substance and get nowhere.  It's my understanding that it was their job to copy, transcribe, translate etc. texts.  Just as much as you'd trust a skilled translator to accurately translate an unknown language to you into words you could understand, so they were trusted as well.  Yes, they could have made mistakes, but they were so careful about their translations (which is one reason why they were trusted) that they would double and triple check and in retranslations, if errors were found, they'd fix them leaving very little room for any errors let alone major errors that could change the gist or context of the story.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Always does. The thing I tell most of the believers that jump to conclusions with insufficient evidence is to wait and see, more will be known later. In your case you already know this.

Right.  it goes both ways

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

OK then. The information in 1 Samuel was presented as if it occurred. Did it? Who can tell, I can't anymore than any other ancient story. The problem for me is the storyline has major flaws in it. Like I said, I write that off to the storytellers deviating it as they told it.

Some of the OT stories were handed down verbally years before being written down, therefore the validity of some of those stories is of course in question... but they're included in the Bible due to timeline congruency which fits in with stories that are better known to have happened.  This is why I take the whole book of the Bible in context. Up to this point, these stories paint a geneology timeline.  Some stories are more likely to have happened than others based solely on what we can find historically, but congruent timelines from one story to the next suggest the less known stories are likely.  

As far as 1 Sam is concerned... I'm not 100% sure where this book lies.  It seems to lean on the story telling side, but due to congruency in the timeline with other stories, the only reason to doubt it is lack of historical content.  

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

One wonders just how much is legend and how much was real in many accounts of all history. As with today, leaders and supposed heroes had agendas. Many had their own versions of publicists or propaganda agents. This is true especially in regard to kings and conquerors.

sure, all of history could be in question and due to lack of support for most of history, ti all could be logically categorized as fictional... so where do we draw the line really and how do we determine that?

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

See the Sumerian Kings lists that go hundreds of thousands of years. Are genealogies and kings list always supportable. Obviously not or we are missing something very important, which is always possible.

I don't know a lot about genealogies, but I do know there's a way to decipher between genealogies you can consider legit and ones you can't...  I'm not sure exactly, but I think it has to do with tracing your steps from the present back... when there's a gap in the genealogy timeline, then it gets difficult to find your path again, but you look for congruencies in what you know with what you're looking for.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

We talked about the Flood before. I think the Hebrew version is a modified one from Sumer. If Abram came from Ur or Sumer he and/or his family would know the legends of Sumer. Even if Abe is not a real person, many others migrated from Mesopotamia (Sumer or Iraq) and brought their stories, gods and legends along.

Stories can be legends or misunderstood events regardless or not if there is an administrator for our spiral arm in this galaxy or as you say god. I disagree that if such an administrator exists that the legends are true. Ancient man was mystified by many things and the stories and legends from all over the world show that if you don't understand it, it must be some sort of god who caused it. Just something to think about.

 

The "I don't understand it so God did it" is a very historical state of mind with lack of knowledge of the sciences, archeology etc.  Today there are a lot of well educated people who still accept a God and will say that this God is working in their lives today.  The difference with believing history and believing in God is that God is still present in our lives and we know it.  

As far as the flood... there are many cultures you can blame the flood story on... the funny thing is, there are many cultures you can blame the flood story on...  There are a lot of cultures that have a flood story that you couldn't blame the flood story on because they would have had no way of getting their stories to the Bible writers int he appropriate timeframe.  There are cultures all over the world that have a flood story... The question is where did it start, or does geology support the point that there really was a major worldwide flood during a certain period of time... 


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pauljohntheskeptic wrote:I

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

I think I gave you some links a while back on the study of ancient god beliefs in the Middle East, Mesopotamia, Palestine and Eqypt. I have some books on the subject as well. Let me know if you need them again. When you refer to Asiatic cultures, do you mean China, India or Japan. Those who lived in Palestine, Iraq and Iran were called Asiatics by the Egyptians.

I'm sorry, send me those links again.  It's been kind of hectic lately... they may have slipped my mind if I never commented on them.
I was referring to China, India, Japan.  The far east cultures.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

If you look again at what I said, many of the choices are yours to make. Go right or left. Take a job or not.

Granted you are you because your parents met. What happens later on is on you.

Your line of reasoning also applies to the consequences of actions done in the past, by religions of all persuasions.

1-What if Pope Urban II did not call a crusade? Would Christians and Muslims be at each others throats.

2-What if Pope not so Innocent III had not persecuted the Cathars. What if he had not called the 4th Crusade that went against Byzantine Constantinople?

The 1st Crusade created hatred that still lasts to this day. The supposed representative of Jesus on Earth called a war basically to save the Holyland of the god. In the process the death count was extremely high. Antagonism generated towards Christians just from Ma'arat Al Numan is still remembered by Muslims today. Christians are the god's agents? Not as far as the Muslims in Palestine are concerned who know about the real story of how vile the Christians were.

If the views of the Cathars had survived and the Church had not imposed god in their way on Europe, what would be different?

If the 4th Crusade had not weakened the Byzantines, would Turkey be Muslim today?

What if the Catholics had settled all of America using the Latin Vulgate as a Bible not the KJV. What would the US be like?

What if the Spanish had not killed millions in America just because they believed in  a different kind of god and had something worth stealing?

right, see.  Any number of possibilities could be and we could spend the rest of our lives speculating what could have been.  The idea is everything that happened in history no matter how small has affected what kind of world we live in today.  

God would be aware of all those possibilities and would make the best choice for the current population as well as far future populations.  Therefore, we can speculate how just or unjust his actions were in a certain situation... The truth is, the possibilities of what could happen if those actions didn't happen are beyond our comprehension and there are a number of possibilities per person that might not have ultimately been affected by what happened.  Due to the personality of God painted by scripture, it is understood by believers that God made the best possible choice.  

The butterfly effect is quite the mind job.  

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

But you concluded from "context" that the Amalekites got justice from your god for their previous actions of their ancestors. So you hold the people to be guilty, therefore black and white.

My view is at best it was propaganda if true at all. The Saul adventure should be held as skeptical at best in many ways.

Normally most atheists will beat you up over this incident as the god ordering genocide. I don't as it's pretty obvious to me that it is propaganda and/or extreme exaggeration at best.

exaggeration likely.  I believe the attack happened, a complete annihilation is not supported from what I can tell.. but it would have been enough to prevent future movements from the culture against the entity.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Apparently your god needed the Romans to kill Jesus.

God didn't 'need' anyone to kill Jesus.  He knew what would happen if Jesus came down and all God had to do was send Jesus.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

I've seen a program on Discovery Channel or Science Channel where a comet came in and landed in the Alps. The resulting explosion in this scenario blew pieces back to Sodom and destroyed it. The incoming comet or asteroid was observed by a Sumerian or Assyrian astronomer who recorded it on a clay tablet which was found by archaeologists.

No god required.

There is supposedly a clay tablet with a financial transaction between Sodom or Gomorrah and another Akkadian city dated prior to 2200 BCE. Forget now where I read that.

I have never claimed that God was "required" for anything.  Just because he isn't "required" for an event to happen doesn't mean he didn't cause it to happen, nor does it mean he doesn't exist.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Much happened that is beyond our current knowledge. Wait and see, more will be known. We might not be here when it occurs though.

is it logical to conclude then that some of that information beyond our current knowledge could be further support for Biblical stories? Granted it's speculation, but it's just as likely as not right?

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Now you get it. Why simply accept a story from anyone in the past as true, just because it is in context. Accounts from other cultures add to perspective, they are very important to consider. Believers normally do not wish to bring in the relationships and perspectives of any other culture that sees the events in a different way. In many cases we will never know what really happened, though unreasonable magical stories should be held in a skeptical view.

Israel and Judah are very obviously countries after the time of Solomon. Other cultures do discuss them from there on. Israel is the dominating country and Judah is the wanna be.

 

 

I've always understood that.  i do accept stories from other cultures... just because they might have magic or "god stories" in them doesn't mean they didn't happen, even if it opposes the belief of my God.   To believe in the Christian God is to believe in the existence of other spiritual beings who try to be gods or were gods as well as people.  The only reason why you'd dismiss stories that have miracles in them is because you can't prove or disprove their happenings, but becasue it's not something you believe could happen, you decide it couldn't.

side note:  i feel like our progress through the Bible has slowed a bit.


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redneF wrote:caposkia wrote:

redneF wrote:

caposkia wrote:
It is well known by historians that the scriptures were well guarded scrolls.  

That's irrelevant, to whether or not the stories themselves are pure fabrications, or equivocations.

it's relevant when considering the possibility of then being changed.

redneF wrote:

caposkia wrote:
The Bible acknowledges that specific scribes were hired to record and translate in Jeremiah 8:8.  The link below seems to describe well how careful translations and recordings of the scrolls were handled.  due to this information, it is understood that they did a good job and where they didn't it was corrected.  

Oh, the storybook itself claims that it's not just a storybook?

uh... no..  The story book claims that there were outside sources translating the writings within the story book...

redneF wrote:

That's irrelevant, to whether or not the stories themselves are pure fabrications, or equivocations.

probably because that's not what's being discussed right at this moment.  What's being discussed is whether they'd been changed or misinterpreted.

caposkia wrote:
Though the author is Christian himself, he tends to take a neutral approach to this particular page.

Doesn't matter if he was a double jointed Jew in a wheelchair that chain smokes cigars, and who also happens to be a vegetarian.

That's irrelevant, to whether or not the stories themselves are pure fabrications, or equivocations.

I'd be impressed if a wheelchair was referenced be it that they were not known of... might support prophesy a bit more huh.

redneF wrote:

 

You're just wasting bandwidth with these irrelevant details...

aren't you doing the same?  Are you saying the Op isn't smart enough to point that out on his own if indeed this was the case?


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redneF wrote:caposkia

redneF wrote:

caposkia wrote:

The God of the Bible is understood to be the God of humanity... of every culture.  

No.

False.

Patently false.

You are lying.

Bold faced lying, about what you believe is accurate.

 

You have completed undermined yourself as an honest person, in any discussion that defends your position.

 

 

How does one lie about something like that?  It would be easily refutable if it was a lie.  Look it up Sherlock.  


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pauljohntheskeptic wrote:I

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

I have so mentioned that to him. Just because a story is preserved does not make it true. As the Sumerian stories are far older  that must make Enki the Lord of the Earth based on preserved texts. Very ancient god, vivid descriptions, actual preserved texts from 5,000 years ago, clearly Enki must be one of the real true gods.

It's not like I don't accept that.  Here's the problem with your state of mind.  It seem that because I believe in the Christian God, no other god could have possibly existed... my question is if the Christian God is real, why couldn't other gods exist?  There's a reason why the Bible needs to decipher that our God is the "God of god's and Lord of lords."  For me to deny other gods existing is to deny the scriptures themselves.  

The difference in terminology here might get confusing.  It's understood that YHWH is "the one True God"  to call him the True God doesn't mean that all other gods are non-existent, only that they aren't either thee God or aren't even a god.  There is the true God then we believe every other god is a false god.  not that they don't exist, but that they are not really who they claim to be.  of course every other belief is going to claim teh same thing about their God so this is where a debate of the religions gets started. 

q wrote:

True, what is the real question is: are these stories myths and legends like all others? In my opinion they are just like all the others differing only in the name of the god claimed to explain all that which ignorance of the time could not.

 

I see you are doing a one on one debate with Cap.

 

Have Fun.

usually congruent unrelated stories in history further support its validity... why is it different when it comes to stories of gods?

 

 


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pauljohntheskeptic wrote:1

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

1 Samuel cot'd

Chapter 22

After David's attempt to gain asylum at Gath didn't work out he went to the cave of Adullam. His family heard he was there and joined him as did about 400 fighters, men not jet planes. He went to see the king of Moab and asked if his parents could stay there and be kept safe. After a while the prophet Gad told David to leave Moab and go back to Judah.

Meanwhile Saul like other crazy dictators/kings continued with his obsession in regard to David. He learned that David and his men had been discovered while he was sitting under a tree, spear in hand. He rants to those around him in regard to David, as in will David shower you with bribes and goodies as I do? Doeg the Edomite, who was with Saul’s officials said he saw one of  the priests of Nob give David food and Goliath's sword. Saul then sent for the priest and all the men of his family as well. When they arrive, Saul asked why they were conspiring against him with David. Ahimelek told Saul, who is like David who is your most trusted servant. Saul is further inflamed and orders him killed as well as all of his family. Saul's servants refuse to do so. He then ordered Doeg the Edomite to do it. The Edomite turned and then  killed eighty-five men of the Ahimelek family and put the town/village of Nob to the sword as well killing women, children and livestock as well as infants.

One of the sons of Ahimelek called Abiathar, escaped and joined David. David told Abiathar, you should stay with me and not be afraid. Saul who wants to kill you is also trying to kill me as well. He told him he'd be safe with him.

Once again this is a storyteller's account with no actual verification it actually occurred anymore than the Greek account of the Golden fleece or Medusa.

nothing much to add here.. it's just filling in a timeline.  Adding to all the angles of scripture.  

the next several chapters could fall under the same category all the way up to Samuel's death and beyond... though discussion is going to be quite difficult when it comes to Ch. 28 if we just settle that these are just stories and hold no congruency in history.   I still believe they're all plausible until otherwise shown.  There's no reason to settle that something is not possible until it's shown to be not possible.  

Reasoning?  if you give up on an idea because it's impossible, the idea will never be realized if it is possible.  

 

 


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pauljohntheskeptic wrote:In

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

In other parts of the Bible it is said that no one directly talks with the god, so one wonders about these conversations David has.

?

Are you confusing NT with OT claims?  After Jesus all conversation is to God through the Spirit and By Jesus we can be with God, but there are many examples of persons talking directly with God in the OT including Abraham and Moses whom we've already covered.


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caposkia

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

My question really related to the period when the Church aka RCC through it's monks were preserving ancient writing. As indicated in Bart Ehrman's book, Misquoting Jesus, perhaps not so completely perfect. I was also asking how accurate these monks were in preserving the secular documents. Did they do just as good a job on those?

we can question the integrity of the translators without substance and get nowhere.  It's my understanding that it was their job to copy, transcribe, translate etc. texts.  Just as much as you'd trust a skilled translator to accurately translate an unknown language to you into words you could understand, so they were trusted as well.  Yes, they could have made mistakes, but they were so careful about their translations (which is one reason why they were trusted) that they would double and triple check and in retranslations, if errors were found, they'd fix them leaving very little room for any errors let alone major errors that could change the gist or context of the story.

In your spare time you should pick up Bart Ehrman's book I mentioned which goes into how errors were made in the copying process. You can probably get a deal on one at a local Borders near you that is closing.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Always does. The thing I tell most of the believers that jump to conclusions with insufficient evidence is to wait and see, more will be known later. In your case you already know this.

Right.  it goes both ways

Exactly, I have no problem in waiting to see what develops.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

OK then. The information in 1 Samuel was presented as if it occurred. Did it? Who can tell, I can't anymore than any other ancient story. The problem for me is the storyline has major flaws in it. Like I said, I write that off to the storytellers deviating it as they told it.

Some of the OT stories were handed down verbally years before being written down, therefore the validity of some of those stories is of course in question... but they're included in the Bible due to timeline congruency which fits in with stories that are better known to have happened.  This is why I take the whole book of the Bible in context. Up to this point, these stories paint a geneology timeline.  Some stories are more likely to have happened than others based solely on what we can find historically, but congruent timelines from one story to the next suggest the less known stories are likely.  

As far as 1 Sam is concerned... I'm not 100% sure where this book lies.  It seems to lean on the story telling side, but due to congruency in the timeline with other stories, the only reason to doubt it is lack of historical content. 

OK then, you still see it as a continuation of the timeline to fill in the time period. I see it as an unsupported story which may or may not have basis in the real world.

No artifacts, no support from other sources, no interface with other nations, nothing to suggest to me it is more than storytelling so far.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

One wonders just how much is legend and how much was real in many accounts of all history. As with today, leaders and supposed heroes had agendas. Many had their own versions of publicists or propaganda agents. This is true especially in regard to kings and conquerors.

sure, all of history could be in question and due to lack of support for most of history, ti all could be logically categorized as fictional... so where do we draw the line really and how do we determine that?

It helps to have concurrent support from other nations, cultures, writers, archealogy, or artifacts. Where there are none, it's difficult to accept the stories as historical especially when the story has some sort of religious agenda.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

See the Sumerian Kings lists that go hundreds of thousands of years. Are genealogies and kings list always supportable. Obviously not or we are missing something very important, which is always possible.

I don't know a lot about genealogies, but I do know there's a way to decipher between genealogies you can consider legit and ones you can't...  I'm not sure exactly, but I think it has to do with tracing your steps from the present back... when there's a gap in the genealogy timeline, then it gets difficult to find your path again, but you look for congruencies in what you know with what you're looking for.

In the case of vanished civilizations it is very difficult to go from the present backwards as there will always be a gap.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

We talked about the Flood before. I think the Hebrew version is a modified one from Sumer. If Abram came from Ur or Sumer he and/or his family would know the legends of Sumer. Even if Abe is not a real person, many others migrated from Mesopotamia (Sumer or Iraq) and brought their stories, gods and legends along.

Stories can be legends or misunderstood events regardless or not if there is an administrator for our spiral arm in this galaxy or as you say god. I disagree that if such an administrator exists that the legends are true. Ancient man was mystified by many things and the stories and legends from all over the world show that if you don't understand it, it must be some sort of god who caused it. Just something to think about.

 

The "I don't understand it so God did it" is a very historical state of mind with lack of knowledge of the sciences, archeology etc.  Today there are a lot of well educated people who still accept a God and will say that this God is working in their lives today.  The difference with believing history and believing in God is that God is still present in our lives and we know it.  

As far as the flood... there are many cultures you can blame the flood story on... the funny thing is, there are many cultures you can blame the flood story on...  There are a lot of cultures that have a flood story that you couldn't blame the flood story on because they would have had no way of getting their stories to the Bible writers int he appropriate timeframe.  There are cultures all over the world that have a flood story... The question is where did it start, or does geology support the point that there really was a major worldwide flood during a certain period of time... 

We don't need to get into why do educated people accept a god today, that's outside the scope of this thread.

Floods are described here and there around the world because floods happen all the time, still do. In ancient times no satellites, no weather channel, no warning.

The flood described in Sumer is prior to 3500 BCE. It is a local or regional event, hurricane most likely going up the Persian Gulf and destroying their known world, read it at ETCSL. The bible flood is supposedly after that. Archealogy and geology however do not support the Genesis flood. The city of Jericho for example has indications of habitation that dates to about 7,000 BCE, the civilizations in Sumer date back to the 4th and 5th millenium BCE.

 

____________________________________________________________
"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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caposkia

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

I think I gave you some links a while back on the study of ancient god beliefs in the Middle East, Mesopotamia, Palestine and Egypt. I have some books on the subject as well. Let me know if you need them again. When you refer to Asiatic cultures, do you mean China, India or Japan. Those who lived in Palestine, Iraq and Iran were called Asiatics by the Egyptians.

I'm sorry, send me those links again.  It's been kind of hectic lately... they may have slipped my mind if I never commented on them.
I was referring to China, India, Japan.  The far east cultures.

OK, I will when I'm at my own computer, at work right now.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

If you look again at what I said, many of the choices are yours to make. Go right or left. Take a job or not.

Granted you are you because your parents met. What happens later on is on you.

Your line of reasoning also applies to the consequences of actions done in the past, by religions of all persuasions.

1-What if Pope Urban II did not call a crusade? Would Christians and Muslims be at each others throats.

2-What if Pope not so Innocent III had not persecuted the Cathars. What if he had not called the 4th Crusade that went against Byzantine Constantinople?

The 1st Crusade created hatred that still lasts to this day. The supposed representative of Jesus on Earth called a war basically to save the Holyland of the god. In the process the death count was extremely high. Antagonism generated towards Christians just from Ma'arat Al Numan is still remembered by Muslims today. Christians are the god's agents? Not as far as the Muslims in Palestine are concerned who know about the real story of how vile the Christians were.

If the views of the Cathars had survived and the Church had not imposed god in their way on Europe, what would be different?

If the 4th Crusade had not weakened the Byzantines, would Turkey be Muslim today?

What if the Catholics had settled all of America using the Latin Vulgate as a Bible not the KJV. What would the US be like?

What if the Spanish had not killed millions in America just because they believed in  a different kind of god and had something worth stealing?

right, see.  Any number of possibilities could be and we could spend the rest of our lives speculating what could have been.  The idea is everything that happened in history no matter how small has affected what kind of world we live in today.  

God would be aware of all those possibilities and would make the best choice for the current population as well as far future populations.  Therefore, we can speculate how just or unjust his actions were in a certain situation... The truth is, the possibilities of what could happen if those actions didn't happen are beyond our comprehension and there are a number of possibilities per person that might not have ultimately been affected by what happened.  Due to the personality of God painted by scripture, it is understood by believers that God made the best possible choice.  

The butterfly effect is quite the mind job.

How true, all that was or has been has through natural selection evolved to make the world we live in.

This part of the discussion is not going to get us anywhere and is too opinionated. I will try too stay with the theme of the thread and avoid distractions involving your asserted ideas of what your god may or may not have for capabilities. This is not the theme in this thread.

 

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

But you concluded from "context" that the Amalekites got justice from your god for their previous actions of their ancestors. So you hold the people to be guilty, therefore black and white.

My view is at best it was propaganda if true at all. The Saul adventure should be held as skeptical at best in many ways.

Normally most atheists will beat you up over this incident as the god ordering genocide. I don't as it's pretty obvious to me that it is propaganda and/or extreme exaggeration at best.

exaggeration likely.  I believe the attack happened, a complete annihilation is not supported from what I can tell.. but it would have been enough to prevent future movements from the culture against the entity.

OK, we both agree the massacre described of the Amalekites was exaggerated, perhaps for differing reasons.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Apparently your god needed the Romans to kill Jesus.

God didn't 'need' anyone to kill Jesus.  He knew what would happen if Jesus came down and all God had to do was send Jesus.

Again I have allowed myself to go in a direction that is not intended for this thread, I will henceforth call you on these distractions and not develop side issues or we will not get very far with our discussion.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

I've seen a program on Discovery Channel or Science Channel where a comet came in and landed in the Alps. The resulting explosion in this scenario blew pieces back to Sodom and destroyed it. The incoming comet or asteroid was observed by a Sumerian or Assyrian astronomer who recorded it on a clay tablet which was found by archaeologists.

No god required.

There is supposedly a clay tablet with a financial transaction between Sodom or Gomorrah and another Akkadian city dated prior to 2200 BCE. Forget now where I read that.

I have never claimed that God was "required" for anything.  Just because he isn't "required" for an event to happen doesn't mean he didn't cause it to happen, nor does it mean he doesn't exist.

I do understand your view that your god uses that which is available. My point here was added reference material for you to pursue if you choose and I went further than the thread's intent.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Much happened that is beyond our current knowledge. Wait and see, more will be known. We might not be here when it occurs though.

is it logical to conclude then that some of that information beyond our current knowledge could be further support for Biblical stories? Granted it's speculation, but it's just as likely as not right?

I have no idea, that's why wait and see.

We could all be descendants from a crashed space ship,

or colonies established long ago and the home planet went boom.

And this is just as likely as not too right?

See the point here?

 

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Now you get it. Why simply accept a story from anyone in the past as true, just because it is in context. Accounts from other cultures add to perspective, they are very important to consider. Believers normally do not wish to bring in the relationships and perspectives of any other culture that sees the events in a different way. In many cases we will never know what really happened, though unreasonable magical stories should be held in a skeptical view.

Israel and Judah are very obviously countries after the time of Solomon. Other cultures do discuss them from there on. Israel is the dominating country and Judah is the wanna be.

 

 

I've always understood that.  i do accept stories from other cultures... just because they might have magic or "god stories" in them doesn't mean they didn't happen, even if it opposes the belief of my God.   To believe in the Christian God is to believe in the existence of other spiritual beings who try to be gods or were gods as well as people.  The only reason why you'd dismiss stories that have miracles in them is because you can't prove or disprove their happenings, but because it's not something you believe could happen, you decide it couldn't.

I agree, when a story has claimed magic or miracles I tend to see it as not real. It goes against my scientific background and technical training.

caposkia wrote:

side note:  i feel like our progress through the Bible has slowed a bit.

I will attempt to keep us on track and not argue the reality or not of the god ideas from here on. We both know our positions on these issues and short of your god landing his starship at the UN Building's parking lot nothing is likely to change it. Though if it was a spaceship, that might affect your position as well.

 

____________________________________________________________
"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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caposkia

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

I have so mentioned that to him. Just because a story is preserved does not make it true. As the Sumerian stories are far older  that must make Enki the Lord of the Earth based on preserved texts. Very ancient god, vivid descriptions, actual preserved texts from 5,000 years ago, clearly Enki must be one of the real true gods.

It's not like I don't accept that.  Here's the problem with your state of mind.  It seem that because I believe in the Christian God, no other god could have possibly existed... my question is if the Christian God is real, why couldn't other gods exist?  There's a reason why the Bible needs to decipher that our God is the "God of god's and Lord of lords."  For me to deny other gods existing is to deny the scriptures themselves.  

The difference in terminology here might get confusing.  It's understood that YHWH is "the one True God"  to call him the True God doesn't mean that all other gods are non-existent, only that they aren't either thee God or aren't even a god.  There is the true God then we believe every other god is a false god.  not that they don't exist, but that they are not really who they claim to be.  of course every other belief is going to claim teh same thing about their God so this is where a debate of the religions gets started.

Cap, it's not like I singled out just the Christian god here as not being a per se god, I don't consider any of them to be.

I don't consider any of the supposed gods to be capable of magical events as described in any ancient story from any culture. If the supposed entity was possibly real something else accounted for the events described that fits within our reality or the Universe. That none of these gods is around today is indicative of the origins. Perhaps misunderstandings and ignorance account for it, perhaps language issues. Who can tell, but I don't buy into any god zapped, flew or did anything as described in any culture unless it involved something reproducible in our reality.

 

caposkia wrote:

PJTS wrote:

True, what is the real question is: are these stories myths and legends like all others? In my opinion they are just like all the others differing only in the name of the god claimed to explain all that which ignorance of the time could not.

 

usually congruent unrelated stories in history further support its validity... why is it different when it comes to stories of gods?

  

First of they are not congruent. The Hindu vedas discuss a war of the gods using what sounds like technology being used. Do Yahweh stories have anything congruent to this?

Yahweh stories don't have the multiple god stories involving all the goddesses other than the supposed goddess Asherah who is Yahweh's consort in Canaanite lore.

If you think there are stories that are congruent please suggest some examples of a god story from another culture versus the Yahweh version.

Gods involve magic and fantasy with events that are unrealistic in our observed experiences, at least in my observed experiences.

I have never seen a man walk through a blast furnace at a steel mill and live.

I have never seen a god ejaculate  to a point that the land overflows with water and then becomes a  river.

I have never seen a dead person who is decaying come back to life.

I have never seen a person who could only be killed by shooting him in the ankle.

 

 

 

 

____________________________________________________________
"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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caposkia

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

1 Samuel cot'd

Chapter 22

After David's attempt to gain asylum at Gath didn't work out he went to the cave of Adullam. His family heard he was there and joined him as did about 400 fighters, men not jet planes. He went to see the king of Moab and asked if his parents could stay there and be kept safe. After a while the prophet Gad told David to leave Moab and go back to Judah.

Meanwhile Saul like other crazy dictators/kings continued with his obsession in regard to David. He learned that David and his men had been discovered while he was sitting under a tree, spear in hand. He rants to those around him in regard to David, as in will David shower you with bribes and goodies as I do? Doeg the Edomite, who was with Saul’s officials said he saw one of  the priests of Nob give David food and Goliath's sword. Saul then sent for the priest and all the men of his family as well. When they arrive, Saul asked why they were conspiring against him with David. Ahimelek told Saul, who is like David who is your most trusted servant. Saul is further inflamed and orders him killed as well as all of his family. Saul's servants refuse to do so. He then ordered Doeg the Edomite to do it. The Edomite turned and then  killed eighty-five men of the Ahimelek family and put the town/village of Nob to the sword as well killing women, children and livestock as well as infants.

One of the sons of Ahimelek called Abiathar, escaped and joined David. David told Abiathar, you should stay with me and not be afraid. Saul who wants to kill you is also trying to kill me as well. He told him he'd be safe with him.

Once again this is a storyteller's account with no actual verification it actually occurred anymore than the Greek account of the Golden fleece or Medusa.

nothing much to add here.. it's just filling in a timeline.  Adding to all the angles of scripture.  

the next several chapters could fall under the same category all the way up to Samuel's death and beyond... though discussion is going to be quite difficult when it comes to Ch. 28 if we just settle that these are just stories and hold no congruency in history.   I still believe they're all plausible until otherwise shown.  There's no reason to settle that something is not possible until it's shown to be not possible.  

Reasoning?  if you give up on an idea because it's impossible, the idea will never be realized if it is possible.  

 It is a story which could have taken place in Peru, Japan or anywhere. As a story in itself it doesn't much do anything. Is any part true and based in reality? This does come after many chapters of stories with issues that relate to dates, numbers, lack of historical proof, at odds with the history of Palestine as espressed by many other cultures. This area was dominated by Egypt for centuries including some of the time period we have discussed. The David stories come at a time when the Sea Peoples, in this case the Philistines had located in the area. It is a dark period in many cases for history. Whether these stories happened or not is unlikely to ever be known.

Ideas that are impossible may only be so because we don't understand the technology involved.

It may be that the transporter and warp speed can be done.

I will attempt to expediate our journey from here on and refrain from distractions. I will make every effort to keep us both on track from now on.

 

____________________________________________________________
"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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caposkia

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

In other parts of the Bible it is said that no one directly talks with the god, so one wonders about these conversations David has.

?

Are you confusing NT with OT claims?  After Jesus all conversation is to God through the Spirit and By Jesus we can be with God, but there are many examples of persons talking directly with God in the OT including Abraham and Moses whom we've already covered.

The word I used here was directly.

The instances were very few, Adam and Eve, Moses, and Elijah. The other instances were supposedly the god talking through angels, dreams, visions, symbolic actions, supposed miraculous signs, and whispers (Samuel).

And for 500 years he spoke to no one or through no one from the end of the prophets until the alleged messiah Jesus showed up, according to Christian teaching.

And today, the RCC teaches as do most religions he speaks to no one at all.

This is once more a direction unintended I will attempt to refrain from comments like I made above so you won't need to expand upon them.

 

____________________________________________________________
"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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1 Samuel 25 to 28

1 Samuel cot'd

1 Samuel 25

This chapter begins by stating Samuel died. All of Israel assembled and mourned for him. He was buried in Ramah his hometown. Since everyone dies, I'm sure he did too. That must have been quite a crowd of 500 or 600 people.

Then as with poorly written news articles of today it goes off on a tangent, "David moved down into the Desert of Paran." It has a point to go this way, but one would think the writer should have finished his Samuel story with more than one line.

This chapter is basically how David ends up with his 2nd or 3rd wife, not sure of how many by now. The story is told how David sent men to get food for his troops. These troops had been in the area of land owned by Nabal who had a wife named Abigail. Supposedly they had guarded the area and had not stolen anything from him. His men went nicely and asked for handouts. They were turned down. When they return to David he is pissed and assembles his men to kill all the males on Nabal's land. Abigail hears of this and orders up a delivery of bread, wine, roasted grain, 5 ready to cook sheep, raisins, and figs on her delivery donkeys. She meets David's war party en route and tells him her hubby is a fool and please to forgive. He does. About 10 days later Nabal drops dead and David adds Abigail to his developing harem.

Clearly a story telling version. Since David is depicted as very warlike and likes to have new women in his harem, probably has a some sort of basis.

1 Samuel 26

This chapter begins with the Ziphites informing Saul David was hiding on the hill of Hakilah. So he assembles what must be the entire population of his country, 3000 men, (based on Finkelstein's assessment of the area) and goes after him. David sent out scouts and determined Saul was in fact there. David and one of his men sneak into Saul's camp at night and locate him with his spear in the ground asleep. David's assassin accomplice wants to do him in but not so David, he can't lay hands on the god's anointed one. Instead he adds another case of theft to the long list of his criminal activities by stealing Saul's spear and a water jug. The following day, David yells out to Abner that he does a poor job of guarding the king since his spear and water jug were stolen while everyone slept. Saul hears David's voice and answers him. David asks Saul once again why he is pursuing him as he has done him no wrong. Saul realizes once again that he could have been murdered decides to back off again. He apologizes again for his attempts to kill David and returns home.

Clearly story telling, you have the life of the dude who is putting out contracts on your life in your hands and you don't eliminate him. This episode is designed to show that David follows the way of the god and respects his decisions. David's actions in other places will certainly put his morals at question, though it was another time and might made right, though the supposed laws of the Jews suggest something else.

1 Samuel 27

David understands that Saul is likely psycho or has a bi-polar disorder leaves for the land of the Philistines as Saul won't pursue him there. He takes his 600 men and their families and moves in at Gath, a Philistine city ruled by Achish son of Maok who was king. David takes his 2 wives, not the 3rd who still is in Saul's kingdom (Saul's daughter). Time passes. Saul learns David is in Gath and decides to leave it alone for now. 

Since David was basically a killer similar in character to Dillinger, he took  his men  and raided the Geshurites, the Girzites and the Amalekites. Please note the Amalekites still exist, so Saul did not commit complete genocide earlier. He raided their camps and "killed them all" leaving no witnesses. Achish was told David was raiding in Judah. The criminals in the 20's and 30's at least didn't kill women or children, here it indicates David did so. The king figured David would be loyal to him since David had lied about who he was raiding and murdering.

More story telling that establishes what a great human being David was.

1 Samuel 28

Once again warfare breaks out between Saul and the Philistines. Achish asked David if he was going to fight with him against them. David indicated the king would get his chance to see David in action soon. Achish made David his bodyguard.

Meanwhile, Saul is skittish and terror stricken wanting information on  his chances of success. Since Samuel was worm food he had no access to learn what the god had planned for him. None of the other prophets would talk with him and the god had made it clear he was not going to answer him, as he had been disowned by the god. Saul had also kicked out all of the witches, fortune tellers, psychics, mediums and what have you earlier. He has his servants locate a woman that is a medium so he can contact the very dead Samuel.

Saul goes in disguise to see the woman who at first resists and then complies. She manages to bring forth the ghost of the dead prophet and realizes that the man disguised is Saul. The ghost of prophets past (Samuel) rips Saul a new one for disturbing him. Samuel informs Saul the Philistines would defeat him, kill his sons, and he'd be joining Samuel as worm food.

This episode is a ghost story with a medium. I see it as story telling. I don't buy into palmistry, psychics, mediums or ghosts.

 

 

____________________________________________________________
"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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1 Samuel 29-31

1 Samuel Cot'd

1 Samuel 29

Whatever plan David had was not to be as the other Philistine commanders did not trust David to be in their rear ranks. Achish attempted to reason with them but in the end David is sent home and the Philistines head out to meet Saul at Jezreel.

Achish made several comments I find inappropriate:

1- "As surely as the LORD lives..." v 6 - NIV

2- "...as an angel of God" v 9 NIV

Perhaps another translation. Nope, just checked JPS same thing.

I was under the impression Philistines worshiped Dagon  - see http://ancienthistory.about.com/od/godsmyth/a/Dagon.htm

Apparently. So I don't get this unless it is just recognizing David's belief system.

1 Samuel 30

When David and his men reached Ziklag they found it had been attacked and burned. All of their families had been captured including 2/3 of David's harem. The culprits were those same Amalekites Saul supposedly had murdered off (except of course the king and all that was good). David calls for Abiathar the priest and inquires of the god should they pursue the raiders. The god informs him to do so and he will be successful.

As they were pursuing them 200 of his men were too exhausted to go on, so David continued on  with 400. They find an Egyptian slave in a field that belonged to one of the Amalekites who was left behind who was exhausted and starving. David pressed him for info and was told he could take them to the raiders as long as he was released to freedom. They were located dispersed over the countryside, partying out with the booty they had stolen from the Philistines. He attacked them and fought until dusk killing all except 400 that escaped on camels. Everything was recovered including David's harem.

When they returned to the 200 men who couldn't keep up discussions about dividing the booty followed. They of course had all the booty including that which was stolen from the Philistines. David decided all would share equally. In addition he sent out bribes of booty to the elders of Judah who were his friends. He sent booty to Bethel, Ramoth Negev, Jattir, Aroer, Siphmoth, Eshtemoa, Rakal, Jerahmeelites, the Kenites,  Hormah, Bor Ashan, Athak  and Hebron and to all in other places where he and his men had been.

Another great episode from the bards of Judah.

1 Samuel 31

Meanwhile as we switch scenes back to the battle between Saul and the Philistines, many Israelites were killed on Mount Gilboa. All of Saul's sons  Jonathan, Abinadab and Malki-Shua were killed in the battle. Saul was wounded in an archery attack. Knowing he was going to die he wanted his armour bearer to do him in, he refused, so Saul committed hari kari. Seeing his master had done himself in, he did the same. In addition the text indicates that all of Saul's men died on that day as well.

So, who told the tale? The slaves, or women?

When the Israelites in the towns near the Jordan heard what happened they are fled. The Philistines then came in and took their towns. The Philistine victors found the bodies of Saul and his sons, cut off his head, took off his armour and took it to the house of Ashtaroth (possible a temple), put his body and his sons on the wall at Beth-shan. The people in Jabesh Gilead heard what had occurred organized a party of men and went to Beth Shan recovering the bodies and took them  to Jabesh where they were burned and buried.

Sounds like the outcome of a battle you lose. The losers are decimated, beheaded, disrespected, and paraded about. Everyone dies, the winners seize the booty and celebrate.

But is any of it based in the real world?

Who can know.

This is the final chapter of 1 Samuel.

More to come in the ongoing bards tales in regard to David in 2 Samuel.

 

____________________________________________________________
"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 wrote:In

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

In your spare time you should pick up Bart Ehrman's book I mentioned which goes into how errors were made in the copying process. You can probably get a deal on one at a local Borders near you that is closing.

I'll have to look for it.  I did a quick online search for his books... some red flags went up right way when description claims "irrefutable evidence".  If it was so irrefutable, then it would be as historically significant as the Dead Sea Scrolls that changed a lot of perceptions of certain Bible stories.  

It seems the idea might be related to "The Synoptic Problem" which indicates a theory that the Gospels used 2 significant sources, the book of Mark being 1 and the other being an unknown source to compile their books.  There is controversy over those theories generally due to the fact that Matthew claims to be an eye-witness account.  Either way, the synoptic problem in no way suggests or even eludes to evidence that there were mistranslations or translational errors, only that the books we read are taken from another source.  Due to the fact that there is an unknown source in this instance, it is impossible for us to conclude anything as far as inaccuracies at this point for the gospels.  

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

OK then, you still see it as a continuation of the timeline to fill in the time period. I see it as an unsupported story which may or may not have basis in the real world.

No artifacts, no support from other sources, no interface with other nations, nothing to suggest to me it is more than storytelling so far.

we've pointed out likelihoods in other stories for happening in the real world.  Taking this into context, there's no reason to doubt this story other than lack of evidences supporting it in history because there's nothing that causes us to believe it didn't happen and it is a smooth transition from the other stories.  

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

It helps to have concurrent support from other nations, cultures, writers, archealogy, or artifacts. Where there are none, it's difficult to accept the stories as historical especially when the story has some sort of religious agenda.

many atheists compare other stories to the bible and claim that because they're similar, they must be made up.  My angle is that they are different interpretations of the same event that actually happened... e.g. the creation story according to the Mayans is eerily similar to Genesis with a few extra details and more steps.  Native American cultures have unique accounts of the flood ironically taking place around the same time the flood of Noah supposedly happened.  

My point?  there is concurrent historical support from other cultures.  There is an archealogical Bible that brings to light all the archeology that supports the Bible stories.   So due to the Bible having some support from other sources as you listed above, why is it so hard to accept?

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

In the case of vanished civilizations it is very difficult to go from the present backwards as there will always be a gap.

exactly

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

We don't need to get into why do educated people accept a god today, that's outside the scope of this thread.

yea, a bit, unless we're talking about historians of course Eye-wink

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Floods are described here and there around the world because floods happen all the time, still do. In ancient times no satellites, no weather channel, no warning.

The flood described in Sumer is prior to 3500 BCE. It is a local or regional event, hurricane most likely going up the Persian Gulf and destroying their known world, read it at ETCSL. The bible flood is supposedly after that. Archealogy and geology however do not support the Genesis flood. The city of Jericho for example has indications of habitation that dates to about 7,000 BCE, the civilizations in Sumer date back to the 4th and 5th millenium BCE.

 

really... see now I saw a national Geographic source claiming geology does support a major flood... this specifically in the area that Noah is theorized to have been in, not necessarily world wide.  Do you have links to sources that are claiming there is no support... or at least detail the events of that time filling in that timeline where the flood should have been Biblically?  

We've already detailed theories and research on the flood... don't need to go back there but i am curious... 


caposkia
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pauljohntheskeptic wrote:OK,

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

OK, I will when I'm at my own computer, at work right now.......................

I will attempt to keep us on track and not argue the reality or not of the god ideas from here on. We both know our positions on these issues and short of your god landing his starship at the UN Building's parking lot nothing is likely to change it. Though if it was a spaceship, that might affect your position as well.

 

yea, i will too.  Our goal is a walkthrough and we're definitely getting sidetracked.  I know you and i could theorize about many aspects and it's fun, but of course I have other forums for that.  

I enjoy talking to you about this stuff because you actually make me think and I appreciate how much you apply resource and support to your conclusions.  i want to keep focused and continue walking through scripture.  


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pauljohntheskeptic wrote:If

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

If you think there are stories that are congruent please suggest some examples of a god story from another culture versus the Yahweh version.

though different characteristics... compare the Mayan stories of their god... actually gods I'm pretty sure.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Gods involve magic and fantasy with events that are unrealistic in our observed experiences, at least in my observed experiences.

I have never seen a man walk through a blast furnace at a steel mill and live.

there are witnesses of a missionary walking through a active battle ground and surviving.  Both sides ceased fire for their passing.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

I have never seen a dead person who is decaying come back to life.

someone was poisoned because of his preaching of the word to his tribe and survived.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

I have never seen a person who could only be killed by shooting him in the ankle.

ya ever heard of a staff infection?  There's a reason why they used to cut the legs off of wounded soldiers.

back to the focus of this forum

 

 

 

 


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caposkia

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

If you think there are stories that are congruent please suggest some examples of a god story from another culture versus the Yahweh version.

though different characteristics... compare the Mayan stories of their god... actually gods I'm pretty sure.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Gods involve magic and fantasy with events that are unrealistic in our observed experiences, at least in my observed experiences.

I have never seen a man walk through a blast furnace at a steel mill and live.

there are witnesses of a missionary walking through a active battle ground and surviving.  Both sides ceased fire for their passing.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

I have never seen a dead person who is decaying come back to life.

someone was poisoned because of his preaching of the word to his tribe and survived.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

I have never seen a person who could only be killed by shooting him in the ankle.

ya ever heard of a staff infection?  There's a reason why they used to cut the legs off of wounded soldiers.

back to the focus of this forum

 

 

 

 

 

1. If they have different characteristics - the stories aren't congruent (are they?).

2. If both sides ceased fire the battlefield was not active.

2b. "a missionary"? Sounds like a dubious story.

3. No proof of God there - could just be a tolerance to the poison (or it could be coincidence).

3b. See 2b and replace "a missionary" with "someone". Anonymous stories are hard to verify.

4. The bullet didn't kil the guy. the staph infection did.

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
— George Carlin


pauljohntheskeptic
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Some short comments

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

If you think there are stories that are congruent please suggest some examples of a god story from another culture versus the Yahweh version.

though different characteristics... compare the Mayan stories of their god... actually gods I'm pretty sure.

While I'm bored at work tomorrow I'll search it.

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

Gods involve magic and fantasy with events that are unrealistic in our observed experiences, at least in my observed experiences.

I have never seen a man walk through a blast furnace at a steel mill and live.

there are witnesses of a missionary walking through a active battle ground and surviving.  Both sides ceased fire for their passing.

I was obviously referring to Daniel.

Why both sides stop firing could be respect for the religious man. When was this?

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

I have never seen a dead person who is decaying come back to life.

someone was poisoned because of his preaching of the word to his tribe and survived.

Was his body already decaying? Here I referred to Lazarus.

 

caposkia wrote:

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

I have never seen a person who could only be killed by shooting him in the ankle.

ya ever heard of a staff infection?  There's a reason why they used to cut the legs off of wounded soldiers.

back to the focus of this forum

Here I meant Achilles who supposedly could be run through the heart, and live. The only spot according to the legend was his ankle. A staph infection would not have killed him unless the arrow pierced his ankle.

Note, it's not just the OT legends I question.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

____________________________________________________________
"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:

This episode is a ghost story with a medium. I see it as story telling. I don't buy into palmistry, psychics, mediums or ghosts.

 

 

It is interesting to point out a means of sorcery in the Bible... that of which many Christians would deny as real or possible as well.  It's also forbidden practice by the God of the bible and therefore interesting in and of itself that such practice was mentioned of such a highly regarded person.  

We don't need to tangent too much on this, but I find it interesting if in fact it all is just story telling.  Another reason why i have a hard time doubting the stories of the Bible are because many things written within these stories if anything would have hurt their integrity during those times, not helped...


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pauljohntheskeptic wrote:1

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

1 Samuel Cot'd

1 Samuel 29

Whatever plan David had was not to be as the other Philistine commanders did not trust David to be in their rear ranks. Achish attempted to reason with them but in the end David is sent home and the Philistines head out to meet Saul at Jezreel.

Achish made several comments I find inappropriate:

1- "As surely as the LORD lives..." v 6 - NIV

2- "...as an angel of God" v 9 NIV

Perhaps another translation. Nope, just checked JPS same thing.

I was under the impression Philistines worshiped Dagon  - see http://ancienthistory.about.com/od/godsmyth/a/Dagon.htm

Apparently. So I don't get this unless it is just recognizing David's belief system.

The story really is about David.  Samuel was originally referred to as 1 Kings before the Apocrypha was taken out.  

There were many belief systems within the cultures during that time.  It is likely the Philistines worshiped many different gods within that culture.  It's likely they jumped from god to god frequently as well.

pauljohntheskeptic wrote:

But is any of it based in the real world?

Who can know.

This is the final chapter of 1 Samuel.

More to come in the ongoing bards tales in regard to David in 2 Samuel.

 

Due to lack of history during this time, we could only assume if referencing solely to what we'd consider today to be outside sources.  I say this because if the Bible was never compiled, all the stories would be viewed as separate and outside sources of each other.