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By Paul Copan

Prime apologetics author with a confirmed song checklist tackles the main tough outdated testomony passages and issues, aiding readers to reconcile the God of righteousness with the God of affection.

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Moab’s king Mesha (840/830 BC) bragged that the Northern state of “Israel has totally perished for always,” which used to be over a century untimely. The Assyrians devastated Israel in 722 BC. • The Assyrian ruler Sennacherib (701–681 BC) used comparable hyperbole: “The squaddies of Hirimme, risky enemies, I minimize with the sword; and never one escaped. ” You get the assumption. Let’s now go back to the outdated testomony textual content to press this aspect extra. It’s real that Joshua 9–12 makes use of the common old close to japanese literary units for struggle. yet on the book’s finish, Joshua matter-of-factly assumes the ongoing life of Canaanite peoples which may pose a chance to Israel. He warns Israel opposed to idolatry and getting entangled of their methods: “For should you ever return and adhere to the remainder of those countries, those which stay between you, and intermarry with them, so you go along with them and so they with you, comprehend with walk in the park that the Lord your God won't proceed to force those countries out from sooner than you” (Josh. 23:12–13). prior in Deuteronomy 7:2–5, we discover an identical pressure. at the one hand, God tells Israel that they need to “defeat” and “utterly wreck [haram]” the Canaanites (v. 2)—a holy consecration to destruction. nevertheless, he instantly is going directly to say within the very subsequent verses: additionally, you shall no longer intermarry with them; you shall no longer provide your daughters to their sons, nor shall you are taking their daughters to your sons. For they're going to flip your sons clear of following Me to serve different gods; then the anger of the Lord may be kindled opposed to you and he'll quick ruin you. yet hence you shall do to them: you shall tear down their altars, and destroy their sacred pillars, and hew down their Asherim [figures of Asherah, who was once the Canaanite goddess of sexuality/sensuality], and burn their graven photos with fireplace. (vv. 3–5) If the Canaanites have been to be thoroughly obliterated, why this dialogue approximately intermarriage or treaties? the ultimate verse emphasizes that the last word factor was once spiritual: Israel was once to smash altars, pictures, and sacred pillars. In different phrases, destroying Canaanite faith used to be extra very important than destroying Canaanite humans. 6 This aspect was once made prior in Exodus 34:12–13: “Watch your self that you simply make no covenant with the population of the land into that you are going, or it's going to turn into a snare on your midst. yet relatively, you're to rip down their altars and destroy their sacred pillars and curb their Asherim. ” In Deuteronomy 12:2–3, we learn an analogous emphasis on destroying Canaanite faith: You shall completely spoil the entire areas the place the international locations whom you shall dispossess serve their gods, at the excessive mountains and at the hills and less than each eco-friendly tree. You shall tear down their altars and ruin their sacred pillars and burn their Asherim with fireplace, and also you shall scale down the engraved pictures in their gods and obliterate their identify from that position. As Gary Millar writes, the fear of this destruction (herem) was once “to see Israel verified in a land purged of Canaanite idolatry as painlessly as attainable.

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