Abraham and Isaac
The first and last thing required of a
genius is the love of truth
Abraham's dutiful willingness to sacrifice his son Isaac, secured his reputation as the first of the Jewish patriarchs. He was just about to put the knife to his son when an angel of the lord stopped him.
Christian apologists paint this as an act of God's benevolence. That whitewash completely reverses the definition of benevolence. What kind of a benevolent God would tell a father to kill his son? How benevolent could God be, if Abraham was too terrorized to complain? Even if Abraham felt no fear or guilt for what he was to do, this was a cruel test to see how far he would go.
God told Abraham to take his son Isaac to the land of Moriah and offer him as a burnt offering.
1"Abraham!" "Here am I."
2 "Take your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering upon one of the mountains of which I shall tell you." (Gen. 22:1-2)
So Abraham cut the wood for the offering and took two men to accompany him and Isaac close to the place of sacrifice.
4 (Gen. 22:3-4)
He and Isaac went the rest of the way alone.
He gave the wood to Isaac to carry and readied himself with fire and a knife.
When Isaac cried out to his father, where is the lamb for the burnt offering? Abraham replied God will provide the lamb.
8 (Gen. 22:7-8)
Then he built an altar, bound Isaac, laid him on the altar, and covered him with wood. He was ready to slay his son with the knife.
10 (Gen. 22:9-10)
But an angel told him to stop. God was satisfied that his fear was strong enough to sacrifice his only son.
"Here am I."
12 "Do not lay your hand on the lad or do anything to him; for now I know that you fear God, seeing you have not withheld your son, your only son, from me." (Gen. 22:11-12)
Newer revisions give God a softer tone by exchanging 'fear' for something like 'trust.' For example:
12"Don't kill your son or hurt him in any way. Now I can see that you trust God and that you have not kept your son, your only son, from me." (Gen. 22:12, New Century Version)
Strong's dictionary confirms that the original Hebrew word is yare, meaning fear or afraid.
So Abraham sacrificed a ram instead.
14 (Gen. 22:13-14)
The significance of the ram sacrifice has to do with the Zodiac age of the Ram, from about 2339 BCE to 179 BCE. Abraham's original name was Abram. This looks suspiciously fictional.
1"Go from your country and your kindred and your father's house to the land that I will show you. (Gen. 12:1)
As a reward for his obedience, God blessed him and his descendants.
16 "By myself I have sworn, says the LORD, because you have done this, and have not withheld your son, your only son,
17I will indeed bless you, and I will multiply your descendants as the stars of heaven and as the sand which is on the seashore. And your descendants shall possess the gate of their enemies,
18and by your descendants shall all the nations of the earth bless themselves, because you have obeyed my voice." (Gen. 22:15-18)
1. The land of Moriah, where Jacob built his altar, turns out to be where Jerusalem would eventually be. This was the Bible's perverted way of hallowing the city of Jerusalem.
2. Apologists will argue that this story shows that God would not sanction human sacrifice; he was only testing Abraham's faith. But according to the angel, God was testing his fear. Abraham did not act out of benign faith; he acted in self defense out of perceived terror. He didn't even protest. The ethics of sacrifice had nothing to do with this story. It was about the relationship between fear and obedience.
3. A man who truly has the fear of God in him will not be constrained from committing violent acts against others as long as he believes he is acting in accordance with God's will. The idea of revelation frees believers from conscientiously holding themselves accountable for crimes they would not otherwise commit.
4. Abraham would not have attempted to kill his son without protest if he had any moral convictions to violate. This is the example set by the first Jewish Patriarch and those to follow.
5. To the degree one conforms to Church morals, such a person at times has to sacrifice his own self interests to the Church's as if they are superior. On the contrary, because the Church is the agent insisting on these sacrifices, the Church is the beneficial selfish party. It's like someone calling you selfish if you don't give him money.