Old Time Radio at OTRCat!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

The Aardvark has been blessed with a number of things in his life...the Dread Dormomoo, the other denizens of Chez 'Vark, friends, a business which is tottering along reasonably well, a lovely church family where he is loved AND tolerated, and an IQ somewhere in the genius stratum. No, I am not bragging, as will become evident (obvious from my inability to maintain the third-person pose). If nothing else, I serve as the poster child of high-IQ non-exceptionalism. My mind is like a Formula One racer being used solely to go to the market and back. IQ represents potential, and not much else. Vox Day's touted (and much-maligned) Mensa-approved cyber-intelligence has much the same stiff bloody lard between his ears as I, the major difference being training. He has been well-trained in the use of his biological Calculation Engine.

Your Aardvark has, alas, not been.

As a child, he was often admonished by his paternal grandmother that "God has given you a wonderful mind. It is a sin not to use it." His first-grade teacher got a mini Real School Desk to keep next to her desk, to more easily keep him fed with work to keep him occupied and thus less-disruptive. Lesson learned: If you are smart, you get to do more work. Your Aardvark even did reading aloud for the THIRD GRADERS to show 'em how it is done. (Imagine how his popularity skyrocketed amongst the other kiddies!) Even skipped the second grade - Vox and John Taylor Gatto can detail precisely how much that is worth. By sixth grade he was a confirmed under-achiever; blowing off homework was normative, even de rigueur . It was only his rescue by Christ that got him on a righteous road of nominal intellectual rigor, but the damage was done. By college, he blew off attendance in some classes, and aced them (c'mon...philosophy?) The predations of Late-Great-Planet-Earthism (now Left-Behindodoxy) took their toll, and I dropped out of college, did not finish my Environmental Studies major, so the Earth was not saved through his efforts, because, hey, you don't polish brass on a sinking ship.

So, your Humble could possibly qualify to hand out cards like Wile E. Coyote's (if not quite) if native ability were the measure. Training is the key, however: how to reason, how to think , logic.

All that said, the point of this screed is not to be a paean to himself's smarts, rather the opposite.... On Christmas Eve, Loen and Riatsila ran across this atheistic YouTube tour-de-force: Why god won't heal amputees.

This Dawkins and Harris approved video is part of an Evangelistic Atheist effort to dissuade nominal believers from their folly by Embarrassing Them For Their Putative Beliefs, primarily by showing How Loathsome Is the Bible, and What A Jerk God Is, and You Are a Delusional Nutcase for Believing.

Some people won't believe in God until pasta flies.

I have no desire to go point-by-point on his entire sales-pitch, for that is what it is: a series of points, questions and answers to lead the viewer ineluctably to the conclusion that There Is No God, and I Need Therapy For Having Believed In One. Generally, the author's arguments consist of claiming that historical exegetical Biblical answers to his shaming questions are mere Excuse-Making for the putative Almighty. I work for a living, and have no time for the task. I have my own answers which satisfy me, but his format and program make it clear that he is interested merely in axe-grinding rather than truth-seeking. The one point which does interest me is this:

Chapter 13: Why Does God Love Slavery?

All of us know that slavery is abhorrent. Slavery involves the loss of free will and the subjugation of one person to another. Slavery is a form of imprisonment. Slavery turns human beings into a type of livestock that can be bought and sold as the property of another person. As described by Frederick Douglass above, slavery is often accompanied by remarkable brutality. No human being would want to be enslaved. This is what makes the concept of slavery so repugnant.

Now that you have a clear image of slavery in your head, here is an important question: How would you imagine that God feels about slavery?

As the all-loving creator of the universe and of each human soul, you would expect God to be violently opposed to the enslavement of human beings. Our all-knowing God would certainly despise slavery in the same way that any normal person does. What other position could a perfect God take?

It is surprising, therefore, to discover that the Bible tells a different story. If we read the Bible, we find instead a God who embraces slavery wholeheartedly. The Bible is so supportive of slavery, in fact, that it was frequently used as a justification for American slavery prior to the Civil War.

We ALL know that slavery is BAD, and are universally repelled by it, but God really LIKES it! We are morally superior to God!

Stupid, stupid God.

This whinge is as fallacious as any I have read, which of course surprises me, since he would have no anti-God bias, a priori . To state that God embraces slavery, that He condones it, is like saying that the US Government condones cigarette smoking because they regulate and tax its sale. No industry has been more publicly reviled by Washington than the tobacco, so much so that the Givemint has cut its own throat, tax-wise.

Likewise slavery, vis a vis God. The historic church understanding is that we live in a bent, a fallen world, made so by mankind's rebellion. Thus the world is filled with bent, fallen activity, which God seeks to regulate by Laws, establishing His will, while also maintaining man's free will. People will fornicate; God regulates sexual practice covenentally for man's ultimate good. Some still choose to fornicate.

Rebel mankind enslaves one another. God provides behavioral guidelines to make the practice more humane. Some choose to abuse their slaves anyway. If they were in covenant with God, there were punitive actions to be taken against the slave-holders.

There is an important distinction between chattel slavery (A civil relationship in which one person has absolute power over the life, fortune, and liberty of another), and indentured servitude (a person who signs and is bound by indentures to work for another for a specified time especially in return for payment of travel expenses and maintenance). God regulates both, establishing what is and is not allowable in the master/slave arrangement.

First off, an admission: the Bible does not prohibit slavery. Let not the wrath of liberals fall upon my head. Sorry, it doesn't, which makes me wonder at the modern allergy to the subject. Few movements have been more set in fiction than the popular abolitionist movement which fueled the War Between the States. Uncle Tom's Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe presented theatrical caricatures of slave AND slaveholder, which drummed up popular support for war. Perhaps more ire should be leveled at the black Islamists who sold (and still do) their fellows than currently is. Contrariwise, New Testament Christian doctrine (first century and beyond) did more to eliminate slavery than anything else. The day-to-day living out of the faith renders it uncomfortable for me to call "slave", whom I also call "brother". The Letter that Paul wrote to Philemon lays down the groundwork for that change.

No, the Bible regulates the practice of slavery, establishes ground rules for treating a slave or an indentured servant and preventing their abuse. A cursory reading of the applicable passages will reveal a message 180 degrees from the one claimed by the YouTube Evangelistic Atheist.

Lev 19:20 And whoever lies with a woman with semen, and she is a slave-girl, betrothed to a husband and not at all redeemed, nor freedom given her, there shall be an inquest. They shall not be put to death, because she was not free.

Levitical law prescribed death to the fornicator or adulterer. In the case of intercourse with a slave-girl, there shall be an investigation, the parties shall not receive the death penalty, because she was not free. This protected the slave.

Please take time to read the passages quoted here.

Deu 15:12 If your brother, a Hebrew man or a Hebrew woman, is sold to you and serves you six years, then in the seventh year you shall let him go free from you.
Deu 15:13 And when you send him out free from you, you shall not let him go away empty.
Deu 15:14 You shall richly bestow on him from your flock, and from your grain floor, and from your winepress; with what Jehovah your God has blessed you, you shall give to him.
Deu 15:15 And you shall remember that you were a slave in the land of Egypt, and Jehovah your God redeemed you. Therefore I command you this thing today.
Deu 15:16 And if he says to you, I will not go away from you, because he loves you and your house, because it has been good for him with you;
Deu 15:17 then you shall take an awl and put it through his ear to the door, and he shall be your servant forever. And also to your slave-girl you shall do so.
Deu 15:18 It shall not seem hard to you when you send him away from you free, for he has been worth a double hired servant in serving you six years. And Jehovah your God shall bless you in all that you do.

This is written in the context of the seventh-year release (or Sabbath year). All loans were to be forgiven, including indenture contracts. Please note: "And when you send him out free from you, you shall not let him go away empty." This proviso insures the indentured servant a fresh start, a chance at not having to resort to that situation again. If, however, the indentured servant loves his master, and is loath to leave, he may then sign on for life, by his own choice.

Deu 16:10 And you shall keep the Feast of Weeks to Jehovah your God with a measure of a free-will offering of your hand, which you shall give according as Jehovah your God has blessed you.
Deu 16:11 And you shall rejoice before Jehovah your God, you, and your son, and your daughter, and your male servant, and your slave girl, and the Levite inside your gates, and the stranger, and the fatherless, and the widow, those among you, in the place which Jehovah your God has chosen to place His name there.
Deu 16:12 And you shall remember that you were a slave in Egypt. And you shall be careful to do these statutes.
Deu 16:13 You shall keep the Feast of Tabernacles seven days after you have gathered in your grain floor and your wine press.
Deu 16:14 And you shall rejoice in your feast, you, and your son, and your daughter, and your male slave, and your slave-girl, and the Levite, the stranger, and the fatherless, and the widow inside your gates.
Deu 16:15 Seven days you shall keep a solemn feast to Jehovah your God in the place which Jehovah shall choose. Because Jehovah your God shall bless you in all your increase, and in all the works of your hands, therefore you shall surely rejoice.

Even slaves were included as part of the feasts of the covenant community.

Deu 21:10 When you go forth to war against your enemies, and Jehovah your God has delivered them into your hands and you have taken them captive,
Deu 21:11 and see among the captives a beautiful woman, and have a desire to her, that you would take her for your wife,
Deu 21:12 then you shall bring her home to your house. And she shall shave her head and dress her nails.
Deu 21:13 And she shall put off the clothing of her captivity, and shall remain in your house, and shall sorrow for her father and her mother a full month. And after that you shall go in to her and be her husband, and she shall be your wife.
Deu 21:14 And it shall be, if you have no delight in her, then you shall let her go where she will. But you shall not sell her at all for silver, you shall not make a slave of her, because you have humbled her.

This regulates the treatment of women taken as spoils of war. The idea is abhorrent to modern sensibilities, but the point here is that the victor is not given carte blanche to do as he wills. He is to grant her a time of adjustment, and then take her as wife. He may not thereafter sell her as a slave.

Deu 24:7 If a man is found stealing a person of his brothers, the sons of Israel, and makes a slave of him, or sells him, then that thief shall die. And you shall put evil away from among you.

Kidnapping for slavery was punishable by death.

Deu 24:14 You shall not oppress a hired servant who is poor and needy, of your brothers, or of your strangers that are in your land within your gates.
Deu 24:15 At his day you shall give him his hire, neither shall the sun go down on it. For he is poor and sets his heart on it; lest he cry against you to Jehovah, and it shall be sin to you.

Clearly God had NO interest whatever in the welfare of the hireling, whether Israelite or no.

1Sa 8:10 And Samuel told all the Words of Jehovah to the people who asked a king of him.
1Sa 8:11 And he said, This will be the privilege of the king who shall reign over you. He shall take your sons and appoint them for himself, for his chariots, and his horsemen. And they shall run before his chariots.
1Sa 8:12 And he will appoint commanders over thousands, and commanders over fifties, and some to plow his ground and reap his harvest, and make his weapons of war and weapons for his chariots.
1Sa 8:13 And he will take your daughters to be perfumers and cooks and bakers.
1Sa 8:14 And he will take your fields and your vineyards and your olive-yards, the best, and give them to his servants.
1Sa 8:15 And he will take the tenth of your seed and of your vineyards, and give it to his eunuchs and to his servants.
1Sa 8:16 And he will take your male slaves and your slave girls, and your finest young men, and your asses, and put them to his work.
1Sa 8:17 He will take the tenth of your sheep, and you shall be his servants.
1Sa 8:18 And you shall cry out in that day because of your king whom you have chosen for yourselves, and Jehovah will not answer you in that day.

God is showing here that slavery is not a thing to be desired, yet He recognises the thing exists, and that the government's propensity for taxation, conscription and slave-taking is a bad thing, not to be borne.


There is much more, but should I go through it all, this will never be published, because of my time constraints. A simple Old Testament concordance search for "slave" will show that the video atheist is utterly canted and incorrect in his opinions about the Biblical topics of slavery and indentured servitude, that the God of the Old Testament limits slavery, and mitigates the abuses and harm which are potentials in the master/slave relationship through regulating what may-or-may-not be done to a slave.

This is me being shocked .


Galt-in-Da-Box said...

First of all, the Union did not go to war against the Confederacy over slavery. That was the propaganda, but Lincoln stated in no uncertain terms the war was "to preserve the Union" hence the name.
Second, if TWBTS was all about abolishing slavery, it failed to do so, and that miserably. Today most American slaves are white and their masters are black, hispanic and coming soon, Muslim. The indentured servitude contract has been replaced with a white-guilt, "social justice" one and any of the uppity, impudent slaves that object to it are instantly branded "racist".
But that's okay; it would appear from the rest of your discourse that you are in full agreement with said arrangement.
Many, MANY thanks for including Mr. Gatto's insights, and exposing atheist propaganda along the way, though the atheists assertions about God loving slavery are as facetious as the rest of his anti-God screed.

The Aardvark said...

OOOOOOOO-KAY! Let's see... I said
"Few movements have been more set in fiction than the popular abolitionist movement which fueled the War Between the States."

Yes I should have said "Few wars have been more set in fiction", but I was dealing with MYTHS, the propaganda behind the war, including the Simon Legree image of slaveholders, which DID stir up northern pro-war support, whether it was the real reason for the War of Northern Aggression or not. It played PRECISELY the same way as the stories of Saddam's and Uday's brutality did for the Irag war, inflaming the emotions and shutting down the thought processes of the "sheeple", so that they are reduced to flag-waving yes-men.

Ted: "Second, if TWBTS was all about abolishing slavery, it failed to do so, and that miserably."

No Ted, it did succeed; it abolished the only slavery that is important. The current "slavery" of European-Americans is just and wholly deserved. Don't you LISTEN to your betters?
(sarcasm off)

You are mixing apples and ten-penny nails. What I am dealing with isn't really slavery at all, it is this guy twisting Scripture to say what it DOES NOT say. He says: God loves slavery because there is no 11th Commandment saying "Thou shalt not have slaves." The Scripture shows that God regulated Man's fallen behavior to make slave-holding a more humane situation. The topic has NOTHING to do your white slave-non-white slaveholder rant.

Ted: "But that's okay; it would appear from the rest of your discourse that you are in full agreement with said arrangement."

Wrong-o, Mary Lou...The fact that you can somehow Ouija out THAT idea from what I wrote tells me that Gatto is right. HOW did you get that? I'm only talking about what the Scripture says on slavery, as opposed to the foolishness that Atheist-boy spewed. You are correct in saying "the atheist's assertions about God loving slavery are as facetious as the rest of his anti-God screed.". THAT is precisely my point, though I might say "lie-filled" rather than facetious.

That's just insulting, Ted. I am as chapped about current "social justice" bushwah as you, and am looking for some way to fix it. Apparently, the Gospel is the most potent change-agent, and that takes time, and a concerted effort by believers who have been taught by the Robertsons and Falwells that we can vote in the Kingdom of God by the ballot box, rather than by making disciples of the nations. Just like abortion: the way to end abortion is to teach people that killing your babies is a BAD thing.

Gotta teach people that doing things Jesus' way is far more effective than doing it some guy's way.

Happy New Year!

Galt-in-Da-Box said...

Clill out, man...just pullin' your chain.
You want to run across some first class ass-hats, just go on FaceBook & mention ANYTHING about God, the Bible or religion, especially in the context of one of those polls!
A fellow that did not know what he was dealing with about got barbecued yesterday morning for it...Sad!
One of the many reasons I'm "blowin' that popsickle stand".

The Aardvark said...

OK...I'm so used to snark on the net I figured "Oh, well, a new way to start the day.". Shoot, man, I hadn't even had my coffee yet!!

Happy safe, and prosperous New Year!

Cunning Dove said...

One reason that the Atheists can get away with this "intellectual lightweight" argument is that few modern christians understand the very things which you have written here. If they understood & read the word, rather than trying to "help" God get more recruits for his team, they would not fall for this kind of sloppy reasoning.

MacLaren said...

Ooo ooo! We're in the same IQ Non-exceptionalism Club!

No wonder we hit it off so quickly as friends.

Additionally, please post more videos of panties.

MacLaren said...
This comment has been removed by the author.