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The Reubenites and Gadites asked permission to live across the river from the Promised Land, and in Numbers 32:10-12, Godís anger grows and he swears an oath to all the Israelites (an act condemned as evil by Jesus). His oath is that, any Israelite who came out of Egypt, and is 20 years or older, will not be allowed to enter the Promised Land, except for Caleb and Joshua. At this point, Iím sure the Israelites are questioning the senility of their deity because he just made this exact same oath several chapters ago when the Israelites were too afraid to invade the Promised Land, remember?

This is the equivalent of a parent telling a child that, because of their naughty behavior, they wonít get a bike for their birthday, and then a week later, telling them that, because of their naughty behavior, they -REALLY- wonít get a bike for their birthday! Which makes you wonder, the first time God said it, was it just a hollow threat? Does he really mean it this time, or is it just as hallow? And a word from nannies everywhere, inconsistent punishment is bad parenting!

Also, while Caleb and Joshua were excluded before because they were willing to fight (actually Joshua wasnít the first time, but he wised up the second time around), there is no mention of them doing anything special regarding this whole fiasco, so why are they still honored? For that matter, why is God cursing all the other Israelites for the crimes of just the Reubenites and Gadites? Why does God keep punishing innocent people? What kind of sadistic jerk are we dealing with?



Arashikou writes:


Given all the other times the Bible has repeated something and the two accounts DON'T agree, I'm actually kind of impressed that this time the repetition was actually consistent. Particularly since, at some point, they had to patch in the "uh, except Joshua and Caleb!" bit to both. I guess the editor was on his game that day.


Oh the irony!