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HUMAN SACRIFICES ACCEPTED BY GOD - Bible and Human Sacrifice

 
The thought of slaughtering a willing or unwilling victim on an altar to appease or please God or the gods or the Devil horrifies most people.
 
Many manifestations of paganism did it in the past. Devil-worshippers are accused of it today.
 
Christianity, Judaism and Islam denounce and prohibit human sacrifice. But yet they can permit a less obvious kind of it or teach doctrines that command it.
 
Christianity claims that Christ sacrificed himself on the cross for the world. The Epistle to the Hebrews calls him the High Priest because of that.
 
So, here we have a religion that says that human sacrifice is wrong even though it is the very abomination that it is based on.
 
Christians say that nobody else has the right to sacrifice themselves like Jesus did. First, because God commanded Jesus alone to die for the world. Second, because Jesus alone could die to save the world.
 
God would not have commanded Jesus unless Jesus alone had the power to save. The first reason depends on the second reason and vice-versa. But any person with a clear conscience could be the saviour. If God loves the person he loves the person infinitely for God is infinitely perfect in goodness. Therefore, a person can offer an infinite price to God by offering her or his life. I am sure I exist but I am not so sure that Jesus did or that he really was the saviour if he did. Therefore, I should make my peace with God and kill myself in order to ensure that the world is saved. So, to believe Christianity that a sinless human sacrifice was required calls each person to suicide or the sacrificing of your own life.
 
And the sacrifice does not need to be sinless at all for a sinner is still infinitely valuable.
 
The Christian Church commands its victims to decide to die when offered a choice between sinning against the faith or denying it and death. This is telling them to offer themselves as human sacrifices for it is better to insincerely deny the faith than to die. To die is to deny the faith in a deeper way because then you cannot do anything to help it.
 
Judaism follows the Law of Moses which is in the first five books of the unholy Bible. These books endorse the torture and murder of apostates from God’s religion, homosexuals and kidnappers to name but a few categories. These killings are senseless therefore the killings are really about human sacrifice. Unnecessary killing in the name of God is really human sacrifice no matter if it is called execution or not.
 
Pope John Paul II now forbids capital punishment though tradition and the Bible command it. Catholics say that he is not saying capital punishment is wrong full stop but only that it is not necessary today and the Bible regulations are only meant to be carried out if the Church runs the state which it does not. The capital laws of the Bible were never necessary and God could not object to Christians using the state to kill people their God wants dead like heretics, homosexuals and adulterers. For him to object now, would be the same as saying he was wrong to go so far. If killing those people was right then, then it is always right. The pope is both condoning the crime of capital punishment and saying he does not – another crime. The Catholic view that capital punishment was encouraged by God to protect the state and its members is misleading because the Bible laws could have done that without commanding the killing of those people and also because the Bible says these killings are punishment. Now could they be punishment if you need them to protect others? That would not be punishment but self-defence. The laws of the Bible had nothing to do with protecting but about showing the people who was boss, God and about God getting his own back on those who ignored his law.
 
In Genesis 22, human sacrifice is declared not to be intrinsically immoral in the sight of God. God tells Abraham to take his son, Isaac, up Mount Moriah and offer him up as a burnt offering. A burnt offering is killed first and then cooked and often eaten in a communion rite. Abraham obeyed God and when he had drawn out his knife to kill the boy, God’s messenger came to tell him not to do it for God had not been serious. So God had lied in telling Abraham that he wanted Abraham to kill the boy. But at the same time his command shows that he approves of human sacrifice for Genesis regards God as good and therefore unable to command immorality.
 
Leviticus 27:27-29 was thought to command human sacrifice.
 
Verse 27 talks about redeeming, buying things back.
 
Verse 28 says that nothing devoted to God by the owner, be it man or beast or field, can be brought back.
 
Verse 29 says that no one who is doomed to death can be ransomed or saved but must be put to death. The Amplified Bible puts notes in brackets to cover up what this really says. It would have us believe that the verse is about people doomed to death because they have committed a capital crime and is saying that you cannot save a person from it by money in justice.
 
The verse afterwards says that all that is offered to God is holy.
 
I believe that Leviticus is really permitting human sacrifice here and does not intend the meaning alleged by the Amplified Bible and the believers.
 
The context, the verse before and after, does not mention the death-penalty but what is offered to God as a sacrifice, not necessarily a dead sacrifice. Sacrifices can be alive when offered and then killed as blood sacrifices. And it is certain that the Law sees death as the only suitable fate for such offerings. The Law makes a difference between the death penalty and sacrifice because the first is only for those who have been wicked to punish them while sacrifice is overtly religious .
 
The context is about holy sacrifices and criminals could hardly be one of these for not all of them repent.
 
The sacrifices will be slaves, children and wives who were thought to be a man’s property.
 
Ransom means to buy back. How can you buy back a capital criminal for he has not been sold?
Jesus told the apostles that he gave them a new commandment to love one another as he loved them (John 13:34-36). This is different then from the Old Testament commandment, “Love your neighbour as yourself” for it was an old commandment. Jesus accepted the Old Testament command so it seems that he meant we have to love one another enough to die for one another. The preceding sentence has Jesus saying he will only be around a little while so that was probably what he had in mind. The line after also says that Jesus will sacrifice himself to death and Peter says he will sacrifice himself too. The Law also commanded people to die for others say in war. So why does Jesus say it’s a new commandment? Could it be that the gospel is obliquely saying that Jesus wants people to die UNNECESSARILY for others? That is the only explanation. If the apostles committed suicide by getting themselves martyred then we cannot rely on them at all. Jesus said that the whole world would know they are his disciples by their love and obedience to the new commandment. But the apostles lived obscure lives and died deaths that are masked in legend. This prophecy proved false. It was only in the second century that stories of this remarkable suicidal fanatical love of the apostles appeared which tell us plenty about when this ludicrous gospel was written.

Islam commands unnecessary killing. It wants adulterers and murderers put to death which is the same as asking that they be sacrificed. God will not be pleased by the victims but he will be pleased by the act of killing them so a person does not necessarily have to be wonderful to be a real offering to God.
 
No true disciple of the Devil would kill anybody as a human sacrifice. We would all be tempted to murder and suicide if they were the ultimate crimes. The Devil runs Hell yet he wants us to live to do his will on earth which we cannot do if we are dead. We can do more evil on earth than in hell. The doctrine that Satan has a hunger for human sacrifice is a religious calumny. The holy are the most likely to cause loss of life.
 
In seventeen century France, the evil hunchbacked priest, Abbe de Guibourg seems to have slaughtered babies in the house of the witch, La Voisin, during Black Masses. Eventually, the pair were exposed in the famous affair of the poisons. Madame de Montespan, the mistress of Louis XIV, was implicated.
 
The Devil would have preferred the elements in religion that causes suffering to those silly mercenary charades of religion.

The requirement of Christians that people die for the faith shows a preference of belief over people. People are sacrificed for belief. Martyrs cannot be understood as anything else but human sacrifices to God. Catholicism makes martyrs and heroes of those who die for it. A religion that calls on people to die for its doctrines is a murderer actually and potentially if it is a manmade religion.

The book, Hard Sayings of the Bible, is an up to date Christian volume that states pointedly that as God owns the life he gives us then he has the right to allow or command or force human sacrifice to be offered to him.  This is in the context of how God asked Abraham to murder his son Isaac as a human sacrifice and burn the body on an altar.

 

The notion that there is an all-powerful all-good God implies that when he makes harmful viruses and bacteria he has a reason for it that justifies it. This is saying that God has a purpose for human suffering. In other words, God sacrifices people for his purpose. Believers cannot object to human sacrifice on principle. Their belief raises the question, "What if God commands me to kill for him and to offer human sacrifices?" Even if he wouldn't, you would have to agree to do it if he did.

 

The pagans sometimes practiced human sacrifice. But the notion of there being many gods and spirits, does not necessarily imply that human sacrifice could be demanded. The gods and spirits unlike God are not all-powerful. Thus we see that belief in God is worse than the pagan system for suggesting that hypothetically, if God requires that people be murdered then he must be obeyed.

 

God in Leviticus 18:21 says that giving any of your children in sacrifice to Molech is profaning the name of your God. It is thought by some that he is saying that Molech is a name for God for it simply means king.  Others think it only condemns sacrificing babies to this god who is indeed a pagan God.  The problem was not the sacrifices but who the sacrifices were made to.
 
Deuteronomy 13:12-16 says that if a town worships another god then all who live in the town must be put to death and the livestock and all! And all must be piled up and even its riches and possessions. Then the whole lot has to be turned into a "whole burnt offering to the Lord your God". Moses is said to have spoken to God face to face unlike anybody else so Moses was in a position to tell us what God wanted if that is true.
 
The Old Testament, the Book that Jesus Christ made his CV, is an evil book. Yet Jesus said it was the word of God.
 
The destruction of pagan cities and towns by Joshua at God's behest is written about at times in a ritualised way. Before Shechem was destroyed, a ceremony of blessing and cursing took place. The language of devoting those towns to destruction tells us one thing. It is more than genocide that is going on. The people were being slaughtered in battle as a sacrifice. Please read the material in True Reason: Christian Responses to the Challenge of Atheism, edited by Tom Gilson and Sean McDowell. One point made in the book is how Joshua deploys a "highly ritualised character" in some of the conquests described eg with the destruction of Jericho. The word herem appears which means "devoted to destruction". The book concludes, "Joshua itself appears to be full of ritualistic, stylised, formulaic language." It does not admit that the killings were meant to be offerings to God.
 
The book argues that when Joshua speaks of completely killing nations it did not mean that Joshua targeted civilians though some of them would have died as part of the collateral damage when fighting the armies. The only grounds the book has for saying that is that some of the nations that were said to be completely annihilated are mentioned later in the Bible as still existing. But that is not evidence that civilians were not targeted. It is evidence that as thorough as Joshua was there is no such thing as completely wiping out a people. No battleaxe says that when he wipes out a nation means that he really thinks he got them all. It is a general statement not a literal one. The Bible merely asks us to use commonsense. The liquidation statements are said to be rhetoric. They are not. Rhetoric would mean that Joshua may have ruined their political structure and use exaggerated language: "I wiped them all out". That does not make sense. If the author of Joshua was sensible he would not write like that for in a warring world it would encourage more violence through bad example. To rhetorically say that if you dispossess a nation of its land that you have committed genocide against it shows that you wish it was real genocide. The book admits to only thinking that the genocide statements are rhetorical and literary. It is speculation and what right have we to take Joshua's side by pretending that he did not really butcher like Stalin? What about the people who died?
 
The Bible at Deuteronomy 7:2 and 20:16-17 demands that Israel must kill everybody that breathes among the Canaanites. True Reason: Christian Responses to the Challenge of Atheism says that since other texts demand that they be driven out that the genocide rule was not meant literally. But the two are compatible.
 
Christians resort to imagining the author of any Bible book would not contradict himself. That is nonsense and considering how hard it was to write and navigate through scrolls in those days it would be expected.
 
What about God's command that every man of Midian must be killed in Numbers 31. Did Moses add in the command sinfully and on his own authority to kill women and children as well as True Reason: Christian Responses to the Challenge of Atheism alleges? But God in Deuteronomy said not to kill people who were not fighting!
 
Exodus 22:29 tells us that God commanded the Hebrews to give him their first fruits and first-born animals and also their first-born sons. Robin Lane Fox thinks that the first-born sons were not to be offered as child-sacrifices to God but just given to God in the sense of being given to the priests for serving them (page 57, The Unauthorized Version). It is hard to believe that God would be that concerned for the priests who had wives and children and people looking after them. If he was, clearly then, the Old Testament system benefited the priests at the expense of the people which shows that it was a greedy scam to get walking all over the people in the name of God. If a religion existed like that today we would all know that it was just a racket for money and power.

Why the firstborn? The firstborn was regarded as the most important child culturally and legally and religiously. Now this has no relevance to the needs of the priests. They wouldn’t care what kind of child they were given. God cares.  This supports the idea that God means child-sacrifice. The first-born was given to the priests as a slave or to be offered as a human sacrifice – more probably the latter.
 
I disagree with Lane Fox for the context is about sacrifice for animals were offered and fruits were offered in sacrifice so it must be the same for the babies. Moreover, the Law condemns sacrifices of children made to pagan gods but never the killing of firstborn male infants for God. Ezekiel 20:26 is thought to refer to this law but it says that God gave the Jews bad laws because they defiled his Sabbaths and even told them to pass their children through the fire – burn them to death as a sacrifice. But the Law never commanded burning babies to death and it says its laws are good and intended by God and it was later that the Jews began to desecrate Sabbaths. The bad laws were given by God through the false prophets. Ezekiel has the Jews of his own time in mind not the ones who received the Law. The law then in Exodus still stands.

Abraham was praised in Genesis 22 for being willing to murder his son Isaac as a human sacrifice. God commanded him to do it. In fairness, he was stopped by an angel just as he was about to slay Isaac but that is not the point. The point is that God praises unconditional obedience and the willingness to kill if God commands you or if you THINK God commands you. The fact remains that the text still says that God commanding human sacrifice is not fine but holy and virtuous and its holy to be willing to do it for him.  If God comes first and has the right to take life it is not very far wrong if you kill for him because you wrongly think he wants you to. Condemnations of child sacrifice only talk about it in the context of making offerings to other gods. There is nothing stopping us from assuming that human sacrifice to God was acceptable. It is said that Genesis 22 is not as bad as it appears for Abraham sensed God would save Isaac from death or if he killed him God would resurrect him. There is no hint of either of these in the text. There is nothing in Genesis that indicates the possibility of resurrection. And how could Abraham sense that God would save Isaac from sacrifice after telling him to sacrifice him? The text is about glorifying obedience to God. Abraham is praised for being willing to kill his son at God's behest even if it meant God contradicting his own promise to make a great nation of Isaac. Abraham was praised for unthinking obedience.
 
The story says Abraham lied to people so that he could take his son up Moriah to sacrifice him to God. Not only have we a story praising God for commanding murder and a man praised for obeying God, but it is a man who was prone to lying. If I were a liar, I would not like to be sure that revelations from God really were from God especially ones that command me to kill. It is an insult to be expected to trust the account which supposedly came from Abraham.
 
Page 166 of Why I Became an Atheist (John Loftus, Prometheus Books, New York, 2008) reveals that the archaeological evidence and the testimony of history is that the worshippers of God in Israel were performing child sacrifice. The Bible needs to be read in the light of the kind of society that produced it. And that was a child-sacrificing one! So it must be read as advocating child sacrifice.
 
God did not need to command Israel to murder adulterers or gay people by stoning them. Surely God ordering you to kill unnecessarily must want the bloodshed for blood pleases him. The early Mormons argued that these rules fit the rule of love your neighbour. They said they were about loving your neighbour enough to kill him so that his blood would atone for his sins. Some Christians say that Jesus alone atones but it is polite to offer your own blood nevertheless. It shows you would atone if you could. It shows you are not dumping it all on Jesus so that you can get away with it. It is like somebody gratuitously paying a fine for you and you giving them money in return.

 

The book of Hebrews praises Abraham and a man called Jephthah.  The latter killed and dismembered his daughter as a human sacrifice for God.  Hebrews actually commends Jephthah as a good man.  Christians like to say the original story never actually says God agreed with what Jephthah did.  But it is obvious they have the author of Hebrews against them for the author knew only of the gruesome Bible story of him.

 

The thought that all creatures already belong to God so killing them to make sacrifice to him makes no sense is a popular one.  It sadly has not stopped man-made religion's love of sacrifice.  Even Jesus has been seen as a self-immolated sacrifice for sins.