If the Bible Was Written by God, He Wrote Some Strange Stories.

Suppose, during Old Testament times, a young writer went to an experienced one and asked, “Master, how can I get my writing into the Bible?”  The older man would have said, “Look kid, first you set the stage by having your characters get themselves into a terrible and dangerous mess.  Then, have your god sweep in and save them. Write that way and you’re in.”

The mythelogical march of the Jews out of Eygpt is a good example.  They walk to the beach and are trapped, the Eygption army is about to slaughter them.  God opens the sea, they escape and the entire Eygption army is drownd.

Then, all 600,000 troops are in the desert, plus with women and children, with nothing to eat.  It’s God again, he rains down loaves of bread everyday so they are fine.

It didn’t matter to the writer that things didn’t add up.  The clan of Jacob had entered Egypt only four generations earlier.  There were 70 people in the clan.  In just four generations, these 70 had multiplied into the Bible’s 600,000 troops plus women and children, about two million people.

And, there was a problem with the entire Eygption army being destroyed.  Egypt would have been quickly conquered by it neighbors had that actually happened.  Instead, Eygpt conquered other nations itself in the years that followed.

There is no hint in written records of those times nor archeological remains of the story about Moses leading the Jews out of Egypt.  What does remain are tall tales, obviously written by humans.

Avatar of Jon Lindgren

About Jon Lindgren

I am a former President of the Red River Freethinkers in Fargo, ND, a retired NDSU economics professor and was Mayor of Fargo for 16 years.
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32 Responses to If the Bible Was Written by God, He Wrote Some Strange Stories.

  1. entech says:

    Jon, you keep writing these things, please note that this sought of thing is only a problem if you take it seriously.

    • Avatar of Jon Lindgren Jon Lindgren says:

      entech 1:44 “..please note that this sort of thing is only a problem if you take it seriously.”

      There is always a dilemma. Does one write about the parts that are totally impossible to have ever happened, or, about the ones that both totally impossible to have ever happened and so patently ridiculous they should never have been included?

  2. justaguywhobelieves says:

    Your claim of being a freethinker somehow does not match your usage of words such as “impossible” and “patently ridiculous”. Impossibility is a relative term, not an absolute one. Your words betray your small and closed mind. “It is a capital mistake to theorize before one has data. Insensibly one begins to twist facts to suit theories, instead of theories to suit facts.” The universe and all of creation simply and silently bear witness to the undeniable fact that ONLY an omnipotent being could have created it. There is no other deduction to be made. May you someday find the peace of God, His son Jesus, and the communion of the Holy Spirit.

    • Avatar of Jon Lindgren Jon Lindgren says:

      justaguy 4:14 Thanks for the first-time post.

      “..your usage of words such as ‘impossible’ and ‘patently ridiculous.”

      I happen to find the virgin birth and walking on water impossible. Stoning children to death for disrespecting parents is patently ridiculous. Being a Freethinker does not mean one accepts as reasonable things that are impossible and patently ridiculous.

    • entech says:

      What a very strange and contradictory post.
      “Patently ridiculous” could well have overtones of opinion as well as fact, however, to state that “Impossibility is a relative term, not an absolute one.” is most definitely “Patently ridiculous”.

      I am sure that Jon would never say anything so categorical but, say, he did make the statement:
      “There is no God”, or, “The existence of God is impossible”, how is that a relative statement, any reply can only be a contradiction, whether it be yes there is or it is possible that there is.

      Small and closed mind, I think you should try a little introspection on that one in light of your statement, ONLY an omnipotent being could have created it. There is no other deduction to be made.

      In the middle of that you say something about twisting facts to suit theories, a perfect description of so called “creation science”. Real science develops theories to suit the facts and if the theories cannot produce tests consistent with the facts, the theories are wrong.

    • Wolfy32 says:

      This is pretty closed minded too…:

      “There is no other deduction to be made.”

  3. Wanna B Sure says:

    Jon; Your biggest problem seems to be with the math. Much has been said and speculated on the numbers. I rather doubt such large numbers were involved. Large numbers and hyperbole do tend to blow things out of proportion on both sides. Look today at the politicians. Look at the numbers defining the economy, The Affordable Care Act, the ratios of any number of polls. An objective conclusion is difficult if not impossible to come to. Just puff up the numbers. To do this is a common practice in military maneuvers, to “spook out” the adversary. Look at what happened to Custer when his numbers were off in the other direction. Add to this the philosophical value of numbers, and it’s multipliers, discussion is difficult. You are still assuming the “Red Sea”, not the more probable “Reed Sea”, making your speculation an absolute in spite of other possibilities, and tribes are not nations. Some of the Norse sagas would have you believe there was more than was there. “Ten thousand Swedes crept through the weeds, pursued by one Norwegian”. Tell that one long enough, and someone is bound to believe it.

    • Wanna B Sure says:

      According to “Ancient Hebrew Research Center”, the timelines of the participants is questionable as to when to start to count. One possibility points to not more than 7,000 at the time of the Exodus. One should be cautious when one makes absolutes using speculation.

    • entech says:

      I don’t know too much about Norse mythology, although there were a lot of “tourists” to Britain in past millennia. However I do think the comparison is apt, most likely neither event is accurate or even historical.

    • Avatar of Jon Lindgren Jon Lindgren says:

      Wanna 1:45 “Jon…I rather doubt such large numbers were involved..Look today at the politicans..”

      Politicians, except the Republicans presidential candidates last time, do not claim their numbers came from God.

      “You are still assuming the ‘Red Sea’”, not the more probable, ‘Reed Sea’…”

      I was assuming the Reed Sea. From what I’ve read, it could not possibly have been the Red Sea.

      • Wanna B Sure says:

        Jon; your 2nd paragraph is not relevant, and is out of context. Studies show that the “reed sea” may have been passable at times. Still speculative.

        • Avatar of Jon Lindgren Jon Lindgren says:

          Wanna 1:09 “..the Reed Sea might have been passable at times.”

          So, would that mean God did not part the sea as the Bible says?

          • Wanna B Sure says:

            “Passable at times” would have been provided?

          • Wanna B Sure says:

            It’s reeds, not kelp.

          • Avatar of Jon Lindgren Jon Lindgren says:

            Wanna 2:00 “It’s reeds, not kelp.

            Nearly all the OT stories had the same pattern, the characters get into a pickle, God saves them. So, if the “Reed Sea” was merely reeds that the Jews could just wade through, we need to have a way for God to rescue the Jews from the evil Egyption army.

            Here is a way to do it. “The Jews passed through the reeds God had placed there wearing sandals. The Egyption army attacked them with chariots. The reeds tickled the chariot horses’ bellies so much the horses fell over in fits of laughter, drowning both the horses and warriers. Moses fell on his knees thanking God.”

          • Wanna B Sure says:

            “The book of Jon” Chpt. 1. Just wait until Ehrman gets done with you.

  4. justaguywhobelieves says:

    Nothing exploded and formed everything. Poster child for patently ridiculous. Where is the science. Science tells us to distill down probabilities to arrive at the most likely answer. “Nothing” cannot explode, it’s not a valid hypothesis, so where do you go from there?

    • Avatar of realist realist says:

      You have an imperfect and shallow understanding of the big bang theory. A physics course would clear much of this up for you. Your incapability to understand does not overrule the ability of others to do so. If you do not understand gravity, for example, it still makes you crash into the ground if you step off a cliff. Lack of understanding doesn’t disqualify the truth.

      • Wolfy32 says:

        “If you do not understand gravity, for example, it still makes you crash into the ground if you step off a cliff. Lack of understanding doesn’t disqualify the truth.”

        Very well said!!! There’s things way beyond our understanding in the universe, that does not make them “supernatural”, It means that our piddly human minds can’t understand them, so we fill in the blanks with God made the universe do that.

        I read an article that humans have this innate need to be able to explain everything, everything must have a reason, a cause, that it is incredibly difficult for the human brain to accept there might not be a reason. Why do humans grow old and then get dementia and forget everything in life? Do we try to explain it by saying God made her get dementia at the age of 94?

        Do we say That all the kids that die of some form of Cancer, that’s what God wanted… God wanted the priests to molest children, he made them that way?

        There’s thing unexplainable in our back yards, yet, we don’t default to God made me do that as an answer. However, we apply the same logic to the universe.. God made the universe do that, he made the sun do that..

        Really? So, God created us with free will, but, in the meantime makes us suffer for it.

        What if things happen, without explanation, without reason, without purpose, children get cancer, elderly get debilitating diseases that destroy who they are /were.

        Adults get sick and die at times. People get in car accidents, things happen in life. Not everything is explainable or has a reason. My house burned down this past spring, no one knows why, how, or what caused it. I don’t make something up that’s “God made it burn down, or lit a match and burned my house down.” Displacing myself and 4 other families.

        It’s interesting that here we don’t go about saying God made the trade centers burn down, or made the planes crash into them. But, God made the universe explode….

        Is that even neccessary to know? We’ve gotten by this long without knowing what caused the universe or what caused life to exist, what does it matter now whether we know or not?

  5. justaguywhobelieves says:

    Your patronizing attitude does not cause physics to behave in different ways just because you want it to be so. “Nothing” cannot explode, it cannot release energy, it cannot assume other properties. Why? Because it is nothing. My apparent imperfect and shallow understanding is very clear on what “nothing” is. Or, is not, rather. Any preposterous theory is suitable for those who wish not to believe in a supreme being. I would suggest that it is you who would do well to brush up on physics, and delve into a proper scientific definition of “nothing”.

    • Avatar of realist realist says:

      It’s not just me. The Big Bang Theory is accepted by scientists world-wide. I don’t profess to being an expert, but I don’t have to be an expert. Plenty of others smarter than me have done that already. Your insistence of your own definitions is doomed when it comes to physics. Google black holes–it’s going to blow you away.

      • StanB says:

        Big Bang theory first proposed by a Catholic priest.

        • entech says:

          LeMaitre, the man who made Einstein change his name. On of many greats,from Galileo who came up with the idea of experimenting and testing instead of just thinking about it to the Vatican Observatory today. I don’t agree with the theology but the contribution to science is huge.

    • Wolfy32 says:

      Scientists have proven that dark matter exists. It’s possibly what makes up the fabric of Space. There wasn’t just nothing. Possibly ever… There’s been something, be it dark matter, or something else. The problem is we can’t wrap our heads around it. There’s numerous dimensions provable in math that exist, but we are physically incapable of seeing them.

      How do we know there was nothing? Some physicists theorize that there’s a different take on the big bang. that multiple universes existed and have existed for a long time. And two universes collided on a massive epic scale we can’t understand and that collision created our universe…

      Sadly, the religious elite try to come off as thinking they have an explanation for everything, much simpler than not knowing what is out there…

      What if the supreme God Christians believe in actually is an evil manipulator, at war with another supreme being, and they’re losing the cosmic battle and something in the human genome is their last ditch effort at winning. Or they need massive numbers of slave labor and everything is just a ruse to have replacement slave volunteers?

      That’s as possible as anything else.

  6. justaguywhobelieves says:

    “There’s been something . . .”

    Where did it come from? Those who believe in the fallacy of Big Bang are merely grasping at straws. The question begs to be answered – where did it come from? Just because a whole bunch of people who are assumed to be smart believe in something doesn’t make it a fact, nor does it even make it scientifically sound.

    Whether it is a single sub-atomic particle that contains the mass of the universe, or dark matter, or black holes. Whatever you come up with as the starting point, it must be asked, where did it come from. This is very basic science, people, to which not even the most brilliant and learned physicist is able to presently answer.

    The (so-called) popular scientific community has merely added millions and billions of years and ambiguous anomalous events to try and explain an invalid equation.

    Believe in the bovine doo-doo if you will, it is your prerogative, and I shall believe what I believe. I doubt there is much in the way of heated debate that could change either of our minds. I’ve had the debate with some of the most brilliant minds on the planet, and in the end, they could not provide me with an answer to their conundrum. Continue to use bullying and intimidation to assert your “truth”, because it’s all you’ve got to stand on. Good day.

    • Wolfy32 says:

      You’re making an assumption though. A premise, that is neither provable nor disprovable… And you’re same logic, invalidates the existence of the christian God… Here’s why, it’s also a simple logic.

      By your premise, there was nothing. period. Then there’s an assumption there was a time when their was no God either, since everything must come from something, is a universal truth, then where did God come from?

      The condundrum, is that humans have (possibly a false) assumption that everything comes from something since we came from something (in our case an egg and a sperm…) However, if we accept that God did not come from anything, but, has always existed as a premise. Then, could not the same premise be used to state, there’s always been something, that maybe time doesn’t even exist in parts of the universe, and that there’s always been something…. If there’s always been a god then it would be just as valid to start parts (outside or inside) the universe also always just was.

      I can’t prove whether there was just nothing, or whether there was always something in existence. Nor can I prove that if something has always just been was a God, or a particle generator of some type that exists outside of space and time. I can’t prove any of it… Nor can you… And the bible doesn’t tell us what’s at the edges of our universe or what particles exist in the universe. So, we can’t begin to understand whether “Everything is created from something” is a universal truth or not… And does that universal truth apply to a God as well?

  7. entech says:

    Wolfy, Realist why do we even bother with guys like justaguy, he already knows the truth:
    One Wednesday afternoon God decided a universe was a good idea.
    He decided it was boring with just some rocks and water and so populated it with all the flora and fauna and finally to “crown” it all, the epitome, made to dominate it all – MAN, and as an afterthought woman.

    This raises a question or two in my puny mind:
    What was he doing on Tuesday, why pick Wednesday. If this was the beginning of everything including time why am I even talking about days of the week.
    In the beginning the heaven and earth were created, need to be generous and assume heaven and other means all the material of the universe.
    So if creation was the beginning of the universe and everything was created, necessitating a creator, and, as nothing can be created from nothing we are left with the regression of who created what, when, in what sequence. I guess the conundrum even older than the chicken and the egg, what came first the creator or the creation :?:

    Bit simplistic to reduce it to “If god created everything who created god”, don’t mean to be demeaning using the lower case “g” but until we resolve the next simple question it must be so, if we grant that there is a creator as a necessity for anything to exist, how do we demonstrate that the creator is your God.

    My friend Michael accuses me of being a scoffer, under most circumstances he is wrong but lately I have had scofferdom thrust upon me.

  8. H.P.D. says:

    Greetings Everyone

    Wolfy and Realist

    Glad to see you defending the non believers, good work, good practice. I saw we have a Science fiction writer as a guest today (amateur that is unless, unless he got his Ph.D. by mail order)
    Now Entec you know these boys will not listen to you, remember they are still in the sand lot ( common sense eludes them) they will pick a fight with anybody they please. Almost got caught up on one of those fights yesterday myself. Jesus Junkie Josh. I see has not checked in, must be sleeping off his Meth binge or the Imam’s men must have already taken him. I need to catch a plane while I can.

    Later H.P.D

    Realist the name of the book is “The dumbing down of America”. I think you can down load a copy of the book for free. Just google it (its in pdf form) the writer has a new one coming out shortly

  9. justaguywhobelieves says:

    Your facetious remarks were totally expected, I am not disappointed. Belief (unbelief is also a belief) is rarely influenced by evidence, even though it surround a man. It is not unsurprising that a bunch of prairie rednecks with Captain Crunch PhD’s subvert and pervert true science into a pseudo science stew of deception. Carry on gentlemen, but please, do remain calm.

    • Josiah says:

      “unbelief is also a belief”

      Just like how not collecting stamps is a hobby, ‘Off’ is a TV channel, and bald is a hair color. ;)

      But you were right about belief rarely being influenced by evidence, and you are providing an excellent example of that.

      “It is not unsurprising that a bunch of prairie rednecks with Captain Crunch PhD’s subvert and pervert true science into a pseudo science stew of deception.”

      Personally, I do find it unsurprising (but I don’t usually refer to “creation scientists” in quite those terms and I don’t think you should, either).

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