God is into War
March 25, 2012
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March 25, 2012
|Parting the Sea
Exodus 12:43 to 19:3
12:43 Yahweh said to Moses “When you have the feast of hard biscuits, don’t let strangers or foreigners eat any. If you buy a male slave, first separate him from the tip of his winky, then he can have a biscuit.” Yahweh went on and on about the details regarding the hard biscuits and how this yearly ritual would remind the Israelites of the time they left Egypt for the desert. He also demanded that all firstborn male animals belonged to him, except for donkeys which taste yucky. They were to be switched out for something delicious like a lamb. If this all proved to be too impractical they were to break the animal’s neck. Firstborn critters were to be burnt on a big rock slab for Yahweh’s personal enjoyment.
Yahweh promised the Israelites he would quick-deed them the Canaanite’s land after they did a little ethnic cleansing for him. The shortest route to Canaan was straight through Philistinia but Yahweh had them take the long way around instead, for fear of starting a war they couldn’t win even with his help. They wandered off zigzagging through the desert, following Yahweh’s lead out to the very edge of nowhere, dragging Joseph’s four-century-old corpse along with them. Yahweh came down and personally led the procession in the form of a big floating fireball at night and a dark smokey patch of cloudiness during the day.
14:1 Yahweh told Moses “Bring them over by the sea because I am going to make the Egyptians come so I can bully them some more.” Like many times before, Yahweh controlled the Egyptian Pharaoh’s mind and made him mobilize his army and come chasing after the tribes. When the tribes saw the Egyptians coming they were frightened but Moses said “Don’t worry, God will beat their ass just like always.” Yahweh said “OK y’all quit your whining and watch this. Moses, wave your big stick around in the air and I will make the water move out of your way so you can walk across. When I’m through here Pharaoh and his army will totally respect me, which I totally deserve by the way.” Moses waved his stick and the sea magically split in half, leaving a nice dry trail across the sea floor and a huge wall of water on either side. The Israelites crossed through the canyon of water while Yahweh held the Egyptians at bay on the bank with fits of smoke and fireworks. When the Egyptian army was finally allowed to follow across, Yahweh waited until they were part way through the canyon and crashed the water down onto them and drowned them all.
The Israelites watched as the dead bodies of men and horses drifted ashore and became very terrified of Yahweh’s dire methods and raw brutality. Moses calmed them down by leading them in a delightful little song which goes like this:
15:21 They sang the wonderful song over and over and danced the days away until they ran out of clean drinking water. Moses led them to some poison water. Yahweh showed Moses a special tree nearby that would neutralize the poison.
Out of the blue Yahweh made up a new rule, or more like a threat, extortion really. He said “If you act according to my terms, obey my every wish, and will carry out my exact orders, I won’t kill you with the deadly diseases that I’ll soon be creating special for killing Egyptians.”
16:1 Moving on, the journey took them from the edge of nowhere clear over to the middle of nowhere and the tribes began to say “Why doesn’t God just kill us up front instead of starving us to death slowly out here on this stinking desert?” So Yahweh made them some sort of oily food-like product and dropped it down to them from somewhere up in the sky. He appeared as a big cloud above them and said “I can hear you twerps down there murmuring about me. So here, only gather and take home as much of this greasy gunk as you need for one day. This is a test.” The next morning little round globules of goo appeared on the ground and the people said “What the…?” So they named the stuff “What the…?” which in Hebrew is pronounced “Manna.”
Moses said “Ok everybody, take a couple of pounds of the weird slime to your tent but eat all you take, God says don’t let it sit overnight.” Some people tried keeping it overnight but in the morning it smelled rancid and was full of worms. Moses became very irate over people experimenting with the product’s shelf life because as soon as the day warmed up the stuff melted and oozed right off the shelf.
Yahweh said “Once a week you must have a special day because I said so. Gather up twice as much manna on Friday so you can sleep in on Saturday and lay around all day doing nothing.” On Saturday the leftover balls of paste smelled ok and had no worms. Some people went out on Saturday morning to see if any fresh stuff had fallen during the night but there wasn’t any. Yahweh didn’t like that they were out checking for fresh manna on a Saturday and said to Moses “How long are you idiots going to keep breaking my rules? Now everyone stay in your damn tents all day on Saturday!” So the people limited their activites on Yahweh’s sabbath and decided that the spongy crap was reasonably edible. Yahweh told Moses, who told Aaron, to put a couple of pounds of the sky poo in a special pot and keep it forever as a token of these times.
The people began to die of thirst again and restlessly started giving Moses a bad time about it. Moses cried to Yahweh who said “Ok ok, hit that big rock over there with your stick.” Moses hit the rock and water came gushing out like a broken faucet.
17:8 In the ongoing quest for home ownership the tribes went on the offensive. The Amalekites had the audacity to defend themselves against the encroachment so Moses said to Joshua, “Draft and train us a real army. We’ll make serious war on the Amalekites and I’ll stand up on the hill overlooking the battle with my magic stick.” Joshua commanded the battle in the valley with the troops while Moses waved his big staff around on the hill. When his arms got too tired the battle started going against them so Aaron and a guy named Hur helped him keep it up. Joshua’s ragtag tribal army carried the day and Yahweh shouted “Yeehaw, Moses write this down, I am going to beat down those Amalekites so bad that no one will remember what an Amalekite is!” Yahweh was so excited he swore to make war on Amalekites forever.
18:6 Jethro, father-in-law of Moses, showed up and said “I’m so happy for you guys, you’re doing so well and you finally left Egypt.” Naturally they burnt an animal for Yahweh and threw a family reunion party. Jethro observed that Moses spent all of his time acting as arbitrator over petty tribal disputes so he said “Moses my boy, you have got to learn how to delegate authority.” So Moses appointed a few lieutenants.
19:3 Moses went to Yahweh’s special mountain one day and as usual Yahweh spoke directly to him. “If you obey each and every one of my orders carefully, I will like you more than other nationalities or ethnic groups. I own the Earth and you are my very favorite cultural subgroup in the whole middle eastern region. In three days I am going to appear here on this mountain as a great big cloud and I want your people to all come see me so tell them to take a bath and wear clean clothes. Tell them not to come to the mountain until they hear a long trumpet blast. If they dare come too soon or even touch the border around the mountain too soon, I swear I will kill them dead on the spot. I will even kill any animals that touch my mountain!”
Moses relayed the demands to the tribes and they did their laundry. In three days they heard a trumpet so loud it hurt their ears and scared them. They hurried to the base of the mountain which was covered with fire and smoke. Moses went up a little further and Yahweh said “Tell them not to come any closer trying to get a better look or I will kill them, I mean it.” Moses went back down and explained this to the desert nomads and then went to see Yahweh up close and personal and to hear what Yahweh had in mind that was so important as to merit such drama.
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