Job – Chapter 41: More From God

After a long delay with no word from God, we finally hear from Him starting in Job Chapter 39.  God spoke in Chapter 39 and 40, but had no explanation for his actions against Job.  Instead, God rails against Job for having the nerve to ask questions.  God argues that no one is God but God Himself and therefore Job should obey and remain quiet.  Okay, but that doesn’t justify the killing of Job’s children.  Let’s find out what God has to say in Chapter 41.

“Can you pull in the leviathan with a fishhook or tie down his tongue with a rope?” – Job 41:1

The Bible makes it clear the Loch Ness Monster is real!!!  LOL!  Okay, maybe not.  This verse is supposed to show that man can’t take down large animals, only God can.  However, it didn’t take man long to hunt down whale and elephant, so I’d have to answer God’s initial questions in this chapter with a resounding yes.

“Will he keep begging for mercy?  Will he speak to you in gentle with words?” – Job 41:3

Uh…no.  It’s an animal and animals can’t speak in the tongue of humans despite what many Christians believe about a talking donkey in the New Testament.

“Will traders barter for him?  Will they divide him up among the merchants?” – Job 41:6

Yes, that is exactly what happens today and happened centuries ago with large animals on Earth.  They were hunted down and divided up among merchants.  What sort of nonsense is God speaking here?

“Who then is able to stand against me?” – Job 41:10

If God is describing Himself as the mightiest sea creature, then man can easily stand up to God.  We stand up to mighty animals today and have in the past with minimal difficulties.  Sure, there were/are humans killed now and then hunting mighty animals, but the animals are always the ones to lose the fight.  God isn’t exactly describing Himself as the mightiest of all in this chapter.  God continues describing Himself against a mighty animal.  With each successive verse the response remains “So what?!?!?”  Calling yourself mighty doesn’t justify the horrible actions you committed against Job and his innocent children.

God goes on for several more verses, but has nothing different to add to the conversation.  Even my study Bible has little to say on this chapter compared to the vast amount it has to say on other chapters.  Basically this chapter boils down to God ranting about how great and mighty He is while missing the entire point of Job’s questions.  Not only is this God NOT mighty, He’s also a bit dim witted.

Coming Soon:  Job – Chapter 42:  Conclusion

Job – Chapter 40: God Continues

Job Chapter 39 brought us God asking Job a number of rhetorical questions regarding wild animals.  God completely ignored the real issue of Job’s suffering at the hands of the same God!  God continues speaking in Chapter 40, but we also hear from Job.

“Will the one who contends with the Almighty correct Him?  Let him who accuses God answer Him!” – Job 40:2

Okay, I will.  You kill my children for no reason and punish me for no reason, damn straight I’m going to contend with you!  Job responds by saying:

“I am unworthy—how can I reply to you?” – Job 40:4

Oh Job, don’t do this to yourself.  Stand up to God.  He is the one to blame, not you.  God then returns to speaking.

“Would you discredit my justice?  Would you condemn me to justify yourself?” – Job 40:8

When that justice includes killing innocent children, yes, it should be discredited!  Job is not trying to justify himself.  He simply wants a justification for God’s actions on him.

“Unleash the fury of your wrath, look at every proud man and bring him low, look at every proud man and humble him, crush the wicked where they stand.” – Job 40:11-12

God says this after telling Job that if he has “an arm like God’s” then do the actions of God.  God constantly says how wicked men are.  Message to God, but these are YOUR creations.  If they are wicked, they are wicked because of YOU!

God then talks about creating a behemoth, although the name of this animal is not stated.  In referring to the behemoth, God says:

“He ranks first among the works of God, yet his Maker can approach him with his sword.” – Job 40:19

The Bible just diminished the power of God.  God is supposed to be the creator of all.  We learned in Genesis that God created man in HIS image.  Yet God creates a behemoth that He ranks above man?  God creates a being that He ranks above HIS own image?  Who’s more powerful and more important here?  Is it God, or is it the behemoth?  This verse places the behemoth above God.

That concludes Chapter 40.  I’m still less than impressed with God’s words in Job.  God has no interest in responding to the true question Job is asking.  Instead God goes on a rant about how the behemoth is ranked higher than man in God’s eyes.  Interesting.

Coming Soon:  Job – Chapter 41:  More From God

Others Discuss Job

I’ve been working through the book of Job for the last 2 months and I found it an interesting coincidence that a well-known religious ‘pundit’, Bryan Fischer, recently had a few things to say about Job.  I caught this on The Friendly Atheist Blog.

Bryan Fischer Claims Job, Far from Being a Biblical Hero, Should Have Done More to Defend God’s Wrath

As you can likely guess from the blog title, Fischer and I disagree on this issue.  According to Fischer, despite the great harm God caused Job, Job didn’t do enough defending of God’s actions.  Huh?  God killed Job’s children, servants, and livestock.  On top of that, God covered Job’s body in painful sores and then completely ignored Job’s questions for 36 chapters!  Yet Job is the one who is wrong in the eyes of God.  Wow.  Simply wow!

I guess Job should have thanked God for killing his children.  He should have thanked God for covering his body in sores.  He should have thanked God for ignoring him.  The moral of the story according to the religious?  Whenever something bad happens to you, don’t ask questions, just thank God for the ‘wonders’ He is bestowing on you.

Job – Chapter 39: God Continues

God finally speaks in Chapter 38, but has little to say other than blaming Job for his questions.  God provides no answers and babbles about how He created everything and therefore Job has no right to question Him.  More evidence of being a horrible parent.  God continues speaking in Chapter 39, so let’s see if He has anything different to say.

“Do you know when the mountain goats give birth?  Do you watch when the doe bears her fawn?” – Job 39:1

Any farmer with livestock, and probably Job as well, can tell you they are often part of the birthing process, especially if there are problems during the birth.  I’ve personally seen cows give birth, goats give birth, and cats give birth.  So the answer to God’s first two questions in this chapter is a definite YES!

“Do you count the months till they bear?  Do you know the time they give birth?” – Job 39:2

For anyone worried about the health of the animal, yes, I do!  God goes on for another 28 verses, discussing wild animals and the domestic horse.  God asks Job a bunch of rhetorical questions such as:

“Does the hawk take flight by your wisdom and spread his wings toward the south?” – Job 39:26

At this point I can only assume that God is trying to confuse Job as much as possible so Job doesn’t ask any more questions.  All of these questions and comments are a deflection on the part of God from the real problem.  The real problem is the killing of Jobs loved ones and pain caused to Job.  God doesn’t want to address that apparently, so He chastises Job for having the nerve to ask an important question.

God isn’t done talking yet as there are still three chapters left in Job, but as this point, His return to the conversation has been a huge disappointment.

Coming Soon:  Job – Chapter 40:  God Continues Talking

Psalm 137:8-9

This week’s crazy Bible verse comes from the book of Psalm.

“O Daughter of Babylon, doomed to destruction, happy is he who repays you for what you have done to us—he who seizes your infants and dashes them against the rocks.” – Psalm 137:8-9

These two verses are not referring to a specific person, but to the overall evil of Babylon.  Okay, but the people repaying Babylon are happy to bash infants against rocks?  My study Bible says the following regarding the “your infants” part.

“War was cruel then as now; women and children were not spared.”

Yes, no one is denying that.  No war spares the innocent, but why does the Bible say that those bashing babies against rocks are happy?  Why are infants being smashed against rocks?  Why is God ordering this?  This is further evidence of the evil nature of God.  In addition, it further pushes the point of punishing innocent children, in this case, babies.  Why does God insist on punishing children/babies for the crime of their parents?

It’s amazing how many verses exist in the Bible such as these.  The Bible has a few pages of useful information (which can easily be gained outside of a religious setting) scattered between pages and pages of utter nonsense!  There is no justification for verses such as these and any attempt to do so is to live a life in complete ignorance of what is right in front of you!

Job – Chapter 38: The Lord Speaks

To recap Job Chapter 37, Elihu was speaking, passing along his so called wisdom to Job and Job’s three friends.  Elihu finished speaking and now, the moment we’ve all been waiting for, the Lord is about to speak in Chapter 38.  This is the Lord’s first speaking appearance in the book of Job since Chapter 2.  Will God reveal His wisdom to us?  Will God have a good, reasonable explanation for the harm He caused Job?  We’re about to find out!

“Who is this that darkens my counsel with words without knowledge?” – Job 38:2

Um…you are THE Lord.  The knower of all.  The creator of all.  Don’t you already know?

“Brace yourself like a man; I will question you, and you shall answer me.” – Job 38:3

LOL!  Job has already braced himself like a man.  He is willing to accept responsibility for his actions if only he knew what they were.  God doesn’t seem interested in answering Job’s questions.  Instead, God is going to ask the questions.

“Where were you when I laid the Earth’s foundation?  Tell me, if you understand.” – Job 38:4

When it concerns the killing of Job’s innocent children, this question is irrelevant.  Job not being there at the moment of creation is no justification for God’s actions against Job’s children.  God goes on telling Job all about the different aspects of creation, asking each time, where were you?  Were you there?  No, Job wasn’t there.  Job won’t say this, but here is my response to God:  “No, I wasn’t there, however, I was there when you brutally murdered my children because you were tricked by Satan.  What say you?”

Most of God’s comments to Job are jackass comments such as:

“Surely you know, for you were already born!  You have lived so many years!” – Job 38:21

Again, Job is not questioning the stars or the Earth or the weather.  Job simply wants to know why he is being punished.  He wants to know why his children, servants, and livestock were killed.  Basically God responds with “I did a bunch of stuff before you were born.  Therefore, I command you to shut up.”  Such a kind, loving God.  Some of what God says makes no sense and is in direct contradiction of known science.

“Can you bind the beautiful Pleiades? Can you loose the cords of Orion?” – Job 38:31

The Pleiades is a young star cluster whose stars are bound by gravity.  I supposed one can argue God created gravity, but aside from that, God didn’t bind the Pleiades.  The laws of physics did.

“Do you send lightning bolts on their way?” – Job 38:35

Actually yes.  If one runs around in a storm with a metal rod, the chances of getting struck by a lightning bolt are greatly increased.  So yes, a man can send a lightning bolt on its way.  A lightning bolt is simply a discharge of built up charge in the cloud and the ground.  Using a metal rod (lightning rod) increases the chance of a discharge.  Simple physics that God apparently never learned.

“Who has the wisdom to count the clouds?” – Job 38:37

Uh…a 3 year old!  Anyone who can count has the wisdom to count clouds.  I realize knowledge such as counting is against the will of God for He wants His creations to be dumb for fear of them realizing the truth (there is no God), but seriously, to mock Job for being able to count?  That’s a dick move and a dumb one at that.  Look back to the Tower of Babel story for God’s views on man gaining too much wisdom and knowledge.

To sum up Chapter 38, God has very little to offer.  He simply says in many different ways “I am awesome, I created everything, you are a dumb man, therefore, shut up.”  I really expected more from God.  Maybe we’ll get more in the last couple of chapters of Job, but given what we’ve read thus far, I’m not holding my breath.  God completely ignores the point of Job’s pleading.  He answers Job with a non-answer, using a fallacy to deflect Job’s questions.  God lacks basic science knowledge, which is remarkable given that God supposedly created science!

Coming Soon:  Job – Chapter 39 – God Continues

Free Inquiry

If you’re looking for an excellent publication on Atheism, Agnosticism, Humanism, etc., then I encourage you to check out Free Inquiry, a bi-monthly (6 issues/year) publication by the Council for Secular Humanism which is part of the Center for Inquiry (CFI).

Free Inquiry

I first subscribed to Free Inquiry about 18 months ago when I first came out to myself as an atheist.  It was the perfect publication for me at the time and remains to be so today.  The publication has several op-eds each issue by prominent Atheists such as Greta Christina, Ophelia Benson, Ronald Lindsey, etc.  In addition, there are several feature articles, along with book reviews in each issue.  Throughout 2014, there were several “Why I Am Not A…” articles.  These included subjects such as “Why I Am Not a Christian”, “Why I Am Not a Catholic”, “Why I Am Not a Jehovah’s Witness”, etc.  Although these were limited to 2014, they were a great way to expose me to others who had left religion.

As with any publication, there’s a fee to subscribe to Free Inquiry.  That fee is $25 for the first year if you are a new subscriber and $35/year after that.  However, you get a discount of $21 if you subscribe for 3 years ($84 vs. $105 for 3 single year subscriptions).  I started with the introductory offer year and then re-subscribed for 3 years to take advantage of the discount.

Magazines aren’t for everyone, but if you’re looking for great articles on Atheism, etc., Free Inquiry is the publication (among others) for you.  I have no regrets and look forward to each and every issue!

Disclaimer:  The CFI did not pay me to say any of this, but it would be cool if they did.  🙂

Job – Chapter 37: Elihu Finishes

In Chapter 36 Elihu spoke to us about the wonders of God in complete contradiction to God’s attack on Job.  Elihu ends his conversation in Chapter 37.  He begins with several verses stating how wonderful and marvelous God is.  He goes on to say that all aspects of weather (rain, snow, wind, etc.) are the direct cause of God.

“At His direction they swirl around over the face of the whole Earth to do whatever He commands them.” – Job 37:12

If we are to believe Elihu, God directly commands all weather.  Thus tornadoes, floods, hurricanes, typhoons, etc. are the direct result of God.  All of the deaths and destruction caused by these events are the direct result of God’s actions.  God choses to kill thousands of people each year through weather events.  What a loving God the Bible describes.  After a few more words on not being able to understand weather, Elihu says:

“Tell us what we should say to Him; we cannot draw up our case because of darkness.” – Job 37:19

People in Job’s time did not understand weather, so it makes sense at that time to think a God commanded weather.  However, we know the cause of weather events today, proving the ‘God of the Gaps’ argument has been and will continue to be chipped away to nothing.

“The Almighty is beyond our reach and exalted in power; in His justice and great righteousness, He does not oppress.” – Job 37:23

God’s justice and great righteousness?  He does not oppress?  Has God been just and righteous to Job?  Has God been just and righteous to Job’s children and servants?  Hardly.  This is NOT a just and righteous God and the book of Job proves that.

Thus ends Elihu’s speech to Job and his three friends.  Up next?  God!  God returns to speak for the first time since Job Chapter 2.  Get your popcorn ready because this is going to be good!

Coming Soon:  Job – Chapter 38:  The Lord Speaks

Job – Chapter 36: Elihu Is Not Done Yet

In Job Chapter 35 Elihu tells us Job is wicked and therefore God won’t answer his pleas.  Elihu is still not done speaking, so let’s see what he has to say in Chapter 36.

“Bear with me a little longer and I will show you that there is more to be said in God’s behalf.” – Job 36:2

Excuse me if I remain skeptical, but Elihu is now on his fifth chapter and has said nothing more than “Job is wicked, God is great, and God works in mysterious ways.”

“Be assured that my words are not false; one perfect in knowledge is with you.” – Job 36:4

Elihu is now describing himself as perfect in knowledge.  Yet I thought only God was perfect?  Man is always imperfect?  This is a very odd verse that is supposed to justify Elihu’s comments, but to me, it just adds more questions to Elihu’s validity.

“God is mighty, but does not despise men; He is mighty, and firm in His purpose.” – Job 36:5

God doesn’t despise men?  Really?!?!?  Has Elihu paid any attention to Job’s plight?  The death of Job’s livestock, servants, and children?  The painful sores all over Job’s body?  If that’s not God despising Job, I don’t know what is.

“But if men are bound in chains, held fast by cords of affliction, He tells them what they have done—that they have sinned arrogantly.” – Job 36:8-9

Elihu is drunk or really has paid no attention to Job’s condition.  Job is the one bound by chains and held fast by cords of affliction.  Yet God has said not one word to Job, in direct contradiction to Elihu’s supposed perfect knowledge.

“If they obey and serve Him, they will spend the rest of their days in prosperity and their years in contentment.  But if they do not listen, they will perish by the sword and die without knowledge.” – Job 36:11-12

This is more of the “good things happen to good people, bad things happen to bad people argument.”  If you are suffering of some disease, for example, and you give yourself to God, you will live happily ever after.  If not, you will die a horrible death.  What if you do give your life to God and still die horribly?  I guess you didn’t give enough of yourself over to God.  God is never at fault.  If things don’t work out perfectly, you are the one at fault.  God is perfect.  Man sucks.  It’s the perfect excuse Christians use to explain away bad things in life.

“The godless in heart harbor resentment; even when He fetters them, they do not cry for help.  They die in their youth, among male prostitutes of the shrines.” – Job 36:13-14

I guess I’m fated to die among male prostitutes!  LOL!

“God is exalted in His power.  Who is a teacher like Him?” – Job 36:22

I’m going to start by looking at anyone who hasn’t killed an innocent child.  In my view, that’s the only criteria needed to be a better teacher than God.

“Who has prescribed His ways for Him, or said to Him, ‘You have done wrong?’” – Job 36:23

Um…me, and everyone else who thinks murdering innocent children is wrong.

“How great is God—beyond our understanding!  The number of His years is past finding out.” – Job 36:26

Again, if God exists and we don’t understand Him, He must work in mysterious ways.  An ounce of critical thinking reveals the nonsense in that argument.

“Who can understand how He spreads out the clouds, how He thunders from his pavilion?” – Job 36:29

Meteorologists, for starters.  Anyone with basic science knowledge can tell you how and why it rains/thunders.  God isn’t needed to explain that.

“See how He scatters his lightning about Him, bathing the depths of the sea.  This is the way He governs the nations and provides food in abundance.”  – Job 36:30-31

Yes, God governs with fear as any good…er…horrible parent does.  🙂

To conclude this chapter, Elihu tells us several things about God that are in direct contradiction to the obviously clear plight of Job.  Elihu then asks several questions that are all easily answerable with a tiny bit of critical thinking.  Elihu has one more chapter in him before God finally speaks!  Yes, at long last, God is about to speak!!!

Coming Soon:  Job – Chapter 37:  Elihu Finishes

Deuteronomy 25:11-12

This week’s crazy Bible verse(s) is Deuteronomy 25:11-12.  If you’re not sitting down, you’ll probably want to sit down for this one.  🙂

“If two men are fighting and the wife of one of them comes to rescue her husband from his assailant, and she reaches out and seizes his private parts, you shall cut off her hand.  Show her no pity.” – Deuteronomy 25:11-12

If you deny my claim that this is in the Bible, go ahead and check it out for yourself.  It’s really there!  I’m not even sure I know what to say at this point.  When, in the history of mankind, have two men been fighting when the wife of one grabs her husband’s dick…in the middle of a fight!!!  Yet somehow the authors of the Bible, supposedly speaking the direct word of God, felt this was very necessary to include as a rule in the Bible.

Read these two verses again and think about them for a second.  This is in the Bible.  This is in the book that too many people say should replace the U.S. Constitution as ultimate law.  This is in the book that people use as a morality guide.  This is in the book that Christians insist should be read in public schools and at public government meetings.

Wow!  On top of that, if the woman grabs her husband’s dick in the middle of a fight, as weird as that already is, God commands her hand to be cut off.  Her…hand…to…be…cut…off!!!  That’s how serious of an offense God takes in-fight dick grabbing.  🙂

Church as a kid would have been much more interesting had verses like this been discussed.  Heck, I might even return to being a regular church goer if we are able to discuss this stuff!