Saturday, April 11, 2009

Sorry, God ... you wanted how many?

And in the spirit of mocking Easter mercilessly, we bring you the adventures of Noah, who was instructed to ... hang on, what was he instructed to do? (All emphasis tail-waggingly added.)

Genesis 6:19-20: "And of every living thing of all flesh you shall bring two of every sort into the ark, to keep them alive with you; they shall be male and female. Of the birds after their kind, of animals after their kind, and of every creeping thing of the earth after its kind, two of every kind will come to you to keep them alive."

Sorry, Lord, I didn't catch that ... come again:

Genesis 7:2-3: "You shall take with you seven each of every clean animal, a male and his female; two each of animals that are unclean, a male and his female; also seven each of birds of the air, male and female, to keep the species alive on the face of all the earth."

You know, if I was going to devote my life to a particular religion, I think I'd go for one whose Omniscient Deity could tell the difference between two and seven. I'm kind of picky that way.


The Artful Nudger said...

Well, while you're at it:

2 Chronicles 4:2:
Also he made a molten sea of ten cubits from brim to brim, round in compass, and five cubits the height thereof; and a line of thirty cubits did compass it round about.

Also, Leviticus 11:6, 11:10, and 11:19:
And the hare, because he cheweth the cud, but divideth not the hoof; he is unclean unto you.
And all that have not fins and scales in the seas, and in the rivers, of all that move in the waters, and of any living thing which is in the waters, they shall be an abomination unto you.
And the stork, the heron after her kind, and the lapwing, and the bat.

So, to sum up, the inerrant Word of God says that pi is exactly three, rabbits chew their cud, good Christians don't eat shellfish (or have no problem with homosexuality - it's one or the other), and bats are fowl.


Frank Frink said...

If you squint just the right way two and seven look an awful lot alike.

Either that or God was a touch nearsighted but kept refusing to visit the great dispensing optician in the sky.

Luna said...

And that's why some of us are smart enough not to take it all literally. :)

Know what Jesus's last words were before he was crucified?

Nobody touch my Easter chocolate! I'll be back in three days!


Kelseigh said...

You want real fun, take a look at some of the theories the creatards come up with to explain how the flood happened. Hilarious stuff.

Chimera said...

Not being able to tell the difference between two and seven is the reason the fundie pinhead zealots always think they've got a majority.

toujoursdan said...

Of course, almost no mainline Jews and Christians take it literally. Neither did the original writers evidently since they were no doubt aware that two versions of this story were circulating and when this is written down for the first time took both versions and spliced them next to each other in a process called redaction.

The Genesis 6 version comes from the "Yahwist" source: so-called because it referred to God as YHWH, written around 950BC. The Genesis 7 version comes from the "Priestly" source dated from 500BC and written during the Babylonian exile and after the Mosaic law had been developed. (This is why Genesis 7 makes a distinction between clean and unclean animals, though literally, Moses wouldn't have known what a clean and unclean animal is since God hadn't given the Israelites the Ten Commandments and rest of the Mosaic Law yet.) Both versions of the story were written into the book of Genesis around 400BC.

Whether it really happened or not is as irrelevant to mainline Christians and Jews as whether there was a real town, boy or wolf in the story of the "Boy Who Cried Wolf". The value of that story doesn't come from whether it happened or not, but from the moral, which is to not give false alarms because people may ignore a true one.

In this case, the Jews took a Sumerian flood myth (perhaps, based on a real flood that caused the Black or Mediterranean Sea or flooding from the Tigris and Euphrates River) and used it to convey that their god Yahweh is in ultimate control of the entire world, over life and death itself and that humanity's "evil" matters to Yahweh. This was a revolutionary concept for the time given that the surrounding religions were polytheistic and had several different gods who each controlled the weather, water, sun or crops only, and were generally a-moral. Whether it happened or not wouldn't be as important to ancient people as what truth that the story conveyed. That is why the original writers of Genesis could take both versions of the story and splice them together and millions of people over the millenia could read both versions of the story, note the contradiction in the detail and decide that the story still had value and conveyed a valid truth.

(Do neo-atheists or fundamentalists who discover this ever ask what the ancient people who redacted this story were thinking when they put both of them together in a way that was obviously contradictory? Do they ever take the next logical step and wonder why didn't it matter to them? Or do they just conveniently assume that all ancient people are really stupid, superstitious and brainwashed and not dig any deeper?)

psa said...

toujours i'm not sure what you mean by neo-atheist but convenient or not, these are fictional tales that serve to draft a basic set of common myths and mores for a particular social subset. there are endless speculations about the authors and editors of the so called good book. i tend to go with the notion that they were a bunch of mushroom eating loons but hey, that's just me, i got your transubstantiation right here bucko.

in any case, a lot of modern folk are really stupid, brainwashed and superstitious as well. so what's your point? you going to share the light of your wisdom or sit there in your festive co-opted pagan party bonnet and pick your nose in mock superiority? don't forget, the cargo cults also had value to the followers. value doesn't equal truth. mind you the cargo cults never caused the maniacal bloodshed and slaughter that the shadow of zombie lad managed to inspire.

Renee said...

Hmm... God is clearly pre-Enlightenment.