Blargh, it feels like Numbers is never going to end. NEVAR!
Chapter 31- God tells the Israelites to go to war with the Midianites. They kill all the men, take the women and children hostages, and plunder the livestock and valuables. Moses is displeased about the hostages, and has them kill all the male children and all women who aren’t virgins. God has the people purify themselves, and give part of the booty to Him as a sacrifice. Supposedly, not a single Israelite died in battle.
So, as I was reading along, I was starting to get indignant about the women being taken captive. I know what happens to women prisoners of war, stereotypically speaking, and I was mad that God’s people were on board for wholesale rape. Buuut, no worries I guess; they all get murdered at Moses’s command. Except the virgins. They’ll be tasty sexual snacks for the Israelites later.
Sorry folks, humor is my defense mechanism. If I stop for too long to think about how this garbage comes from a fucking holy book, and I’m supposedly the immoral person for being an atheist…
Seriously. Verse 18, “But keep alive for yourselves all the young girls who have not known a man intimately.” I’m pissed right now.
Also, we’re supposed to believe that 12 thousand Israelites went into battle, managed to kill all the men, children and non-virginal women, and not so much as a single solitary one was killed?? I may have been born recently, but it wasn’t yesterday.
Chapter 32-The tribes of Reuben and Gad want to stay with their livestock in the land they just conquered, instead of entering the promised land. Moses reminds them how brutally God dealt with the last people who questioned His plans. They offer to help the rest of the Israelites claim their promised land before they settle back in this place. Moses says okay, but warns them that God will be mad if they don’t keep their promise. They begin to build towns in the land they have claimed.
I had been working under the assumption that all the natives were being killed because they were in the promised land and had to be removed before the Israelites could move in. Now it has become clear that we haven’t even made it to the promised land yet. All this war and death is just a bonus; people are dying in places that God didn’t even plan to give to the Israelites.
Seriously, the Bible has gross morals. Stealing land is bad enough, but killing a whole bunch of extra people along the way for funsies is even worse.