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Moses is regarded as the hero who saved Israel from slavery in Egypt and led it across the desert to the Promised Land.


In fact Israel was better off in Egypt for all that happened was a perilous journey for decades in which God tyrannised them through Moses.  Many of them were murdered at God's command.  A bloody priesthood that reveled in animal sacrifice was set up. And many of the men were forced by their religion to become killing machines who participated in genocide.  And the myth of the Promised Land still causes great danger and suffering today.  The love of neighbour commandment was not treated as a core one but was put amid so much evil blooddrinking laws that its presence meant nothing.


Moses, according to tradition wrote the first five books of the Bible.  Scholars today almost universally deny that he did.  However extremist Christians argue that there is no direct evidence that Moses did not write the books.  They want to believe Jesus who called the books the books of Moses.  Some fundamentalists think that even if Moses did not pen the books, men through divine inspiration wrote them as he would have done so the books can still be called the Books of Moses.


A prophet is a person who is authorised by God to speak on God's behalf and who is inspired by God.  To obey the words of the prophet is to obey God.  The reason for a prophet is to avoid having men tell you about God.  Instead God uses the prophet to speak to you.  With the prophet, there is strictly speaking, no human intermediary.  It implies that you should read the works of the Prophets and never listen to what others say about their teachings.  For example, Catholics should read the Bible for themselves and not have priests telling them what is in it.  That is really using human intermediaries.


Numbers 12:16-8 states that only Moses sees God face to face (has a real relationship with God like man to man) and thus other prophets have to depend on dreams and unclear revelations. God has revealed himself properly to Moses only despite the existence of other prophets.  Thus to dismiss Moses is to deny the divine inspiration of the Bible.


Moses is the chief figure in the Old Testament and through him the Law of God was given to the world.  Moses once committed murder and tried to get away with it which is hardly a favourable credential for one who claims to reveal the will of God.  There is no evidence that he repented this.  Pharaoh wanted to kill Moses and Moses hid near Midian but returned to Pharaoh to plead for the liberation of Israel which was enslaved.  Pharaoh would have killed him if he had really gone to him.  Miracles through Moses become daily occurrences which makes the whole thing more dubious. 


Moses claimed to be the supreme prophet and he condemned anybody to death who claimed to be a prophet and made a mistake in their revelations.  Actually, the murdered prophets were better than he was for he never gave any prophecies which was worse.  A man who claims to be a prophet should be able to forecast the future to show his message is true.  A prophet who can’t prophesy and who sentences those who do but make one mistake to death is an evil tyrant not to mention murderer.  And what use are the miracles as evidence when they were recorded after his death and we don’t even know what to make of the writers?  The Law of Moses is shockingly barbaric and commands the brutal murder by stoning of any Israelite who commits adultery or who is caught adoring idols.  Jesus said that the Law was perfect and not one word of it would pass away for it is right meaning that he was no more a prophet than Moses was.  One was as unkind as the other. 


Aaron was a religious fraud who created the cult of the golden calf and yet he was made the High Priest.  What does that say about Moses and his big fan Jesus Christ?


The wandering of Israel in a tiny desert through getting lost for forty years is incredible. 


Voltaire suggested that since the Bible says there was one book of the Law in the time of Ezra, that Ezra wrote and invented the Law and passed his book off as long lost Torah which he pretended to have happened upon.  The Egyptians did not use papyrus until so Moses would indeed have had to write upon stone tablets.  And Ezra’s volume was not stone tablets so it was a fake.  There was no wood in the desert and when the people of Israel had to eat quails provided by God they had not many cattle or sheep to get skins to write on.


The tabernacle described in the Law and which it says Moses had made could not have been made in the desert with all that gold and precious cloth.  The world population was small in those days so it is impossible for Israel to have left Egypt with 600,000 warriors.  And with the firstborn of Egypt dead Egypt could have been taken over by Israel.  Voltaire said that Moses did not write the Law at all because Leviticus says a man should not marry his sister-in-law and Deuteronomy says he should if his brother died without a family so that he could raise up children for his brother.  Christians say Deuteronomy is only giving an exception and is not contradicting.  What kind of God writes laws and then has afterthoughts?  Why make babies for somebody else?  God wants babies yes but why should he care whose name they are under?  Babies should be made not for brothers but for themselves and made in love. 


I add that it is madness to believe that Israel’s God killed the firstborn of Egypt to get Israel freed and then that Pharaoh pursued Israel with his armies after freeing it to enslave it again.  The man would have been deposed for even suggesting they do such a thing. 




The story of Moses in the Bible is dubious.  This book cannot be the word of God.




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When Critics Ask, Norman Geisler and Thomas Howe, Victor Books, Illinois ,1992

Which Version Now?  Bob Sheehan, Carey Publications, 5 Fairford Close, Haywards Heath, Sussex RH16 3EF 

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