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Fetuses, as we see in Exodus —25, where the unborn are assigned only financial value, are out of luck. This may be why it appears that it was infants rather than older children who were sacrificed.

Bad attitude scriptures

We also see in the Bible disagreements between Israelites over the personhood of children. The fact that so many Biblical texts discuss child sacrifice tells us that some Israelites thought this practice was necessary or at least advantageous. This seems a particularly apt conclusion when these texts are read alongside archaeological and other evidence from elsewhere in the ancient world showing that child sacrifice really was practiced in certain locales.

However, the fact that so many Biblical texts decry child sacrifice also tells us that many Israelites thought this practice was unacceptable. One can see in this disparity a disagreement over the personhood of children, or perhaps of infants in particular. A final point is that status in Israelite society was not attached to particular ages as is the case in our society.

No, Israelite personhood was based on social role and physical maturity, not chronological age. It was also mutable and in some cases highly ambiguous to us as modern readers. Despite the desire of students of the Bible to find certitude within its pages, the Biblical corpus refuses to satisfy us on this score.

More vexing, still, since the clearest statements on the status of children are some of the most troubling, the certitude offered is not always helpful. Press, ; it discusses the personhood of children in much greater detail, as well as the personhood of other groups in ancient Israel, ancient West Asia, and contemporary America. Misogyny in the Bible by Hershel Shanks. About this article and in regards to the story of 2 Kings 3, many Christian commentators appear to agree with the author; however, I do not.


In this case it is the king of MOAB that sacrifices his eldest son who was to rule after him to his heathen god, Chemesh. After unsuccessfully doing his best to win against Israel, he then offers his son as a burnt offering on the wall to the god of Moab, Chemosh according to archeological records , to whom that horrific and evil ritual was performed.

This is an appalling claim. For this reason, they had no further reason to stick around, as they had already done what they came to do see verses 24 — 26!

The disaster for Moab had already happened. Thus, there was no need for the 3 kings to stick around any longer. Her conclusion would seem to imply that she did not actually read or understand the story. Alas, he failed here too. It was following this that he sacrificed his son. Then when the king of Moab could not break through, he took his eldest son that should have reigned in his stead and offered him as a burnt offering.

In other words the king knew he was done.

source link There was no disaster to avert. The disaster had already occurred. And there was great indignation against Israel: and they departed from him, and returned to their own land. What it does say next is that two things happened. They were really angry at Israel. They were the ones rebelling after King Ahab died. They departed from him and returned to their own land. Yes, they may have been appalled at what that evil king did to his son, but that is not stated in the story.

How they the 3 kings actually felt about it, it does not say. But to attribute the timing of their leaving to the sacrifice of the son, as what averted disaster is too far of a reach In my opinion. That would be giving Chemesh the glory, when it is the Lord God Almighty who gets the glory. Chemosh or the King of Moab was not the winner here. The author seems determined to get to her preferred conclusion by any means except proper scholarship.

This piece is quite limited and amateurish. There is a huge body of commentary and interpretations that the author has totally ignored. Just because it was written one way does not excuse slovenliness in researching how the various statements were actually carried out and how that changed over time and generations.

For good measure, toss in child sacrifice too, and brush aside foreign origins as insignificant. This is what passes as scholarship today? The article talks about visiting the sins of the fathers on the children for several generations. I heard a story today about a family where the parents have sinned and 3 of their 4 children live miserable lives because they followed their parents in their sin.

This is the natural consequence—that children act like their parents and teach their children also to disobey God. I read several of the Bible verses about child sacrifice. They all stated that the people were not following God and followed the idolatrous habits of the their neighbors.

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God told what people would do to themselves if they forsook Him and lived a sinful life. They continued in their sin by eating their own children to save their own lives. God has given us the freedom to follow Him or to sin against Him.

Even when he is old he will not depart from it”

We are responsible for the results of that choice. There are very complicated circumstances which would be known to all people back then, and which were so difficult that it was never carried out, but served as a warning. The entire story if Abraham and Sarah is about their longing for children. That is why only unblemished perfect animals could be sacrificed. Sacrifice does not correlate with low value. God punished King David by taking the life of his infant son with Bathsheba. God controls the end of all life; It is hardly immoral that infants, children and innocent are included.

Weak logic here unless you assume children are exempt from divine power for some reason. You confuse liking the outcome with morality. Overall, this does not help the credibility of your publication. First born males of any age were killed and not just humans but cattle as well. You need to pay closer attention to who made that statement as the author is clearly stated: Yahweh God , not any Israelite — Moses simply transcribed the Voice spoken from Sinai. The family of Achan as a whole was killed because they all knew the sin of their father and helped cover it up when he was burying the forbidden treasures from Jericho under his tent.

Elsewhere you will see that Korah was killed for his rebellion against Moses. Moses noted that God spared the children of Korah. These children were righteous before God and their descendents can be seen praising God in other parts of Scripture. The child will not share the guilt of the parent, nor will the parent share the guilt of the child.

The righteousness of the righteous will be credited to them, and the wickedness of the wicked will be charged against them. Wrong tendencies, perverted appetites, and the base morals, as well as physical disease and degeneracy, are transmitted from father to son, to the 3rd and 4th generation. A wicked king will beget a wicked king and several generations will pass until one follows the Lord.

Professor, why did you choose your field of study when it is readily apparent that you do not see Scripture as being inspired but rather no different than any other ancient text?

What makes a children’s Bible good?

I was under the impression that all the first born of any age were killed in Egypt and not just the children. If that is correct, it seems that the basis of the discussion is kind of mute. Also, I would think that there is a distinction between God taking lives plague and humans taking lives abortion. In the Bible all lives ultimately belong to God who created them. If God took a life back, he alone had that right, it is irrelevant whether child or adult. He has taken either at various times.

This has nothing to do with thinking that children were not persons. On the other hand, the whole corpus of scripture, both Old and New Testament history, compels us to conclude that personhood exists within the context of the community, i. It was because they were persons that their sacrifice was thought to benefit the whole community. The idea that personhood is a developing process is relatively new. Personhood had to be legislatively stripped from Blacks and Native Americans; and misled abortion advocates today have done the same with the unborn infant to accommodate their selfish whims.

I read some of the reference scripture and immediately felt that this writer is playing fast and loose with scripture. Perhaps she is playing the devils advocate for a purpose. I continued thru some of her references only to see carelessly selected phrases with which most thoughtful readers would have no problem.

Perhaps if you had corrected your students you could have had a discussion on what is actually in the Hebrew Bible, rather than one built on a common misconception. And then, the idea of national responsibility does not just spring up our of nowhere in Exodus. We see it in the expulsion from Eden, the cursing of the ground, the Flood, the dispersion from Shinar, the decrees against the descendants of Kenaan, the plague against Pharaoh and his house, Sedom and Amora, etc.

There is a push-pull relationship in the Scriptures betw individual identity and corporate identity. A future post on the Unlocking the Bible blog will discuss Hebrews 11 and how God can use sinful people to accomplish His purposes. Kevin Halloran is a blogger and coffee aficionado. Follow Kevin on Twitter or visit his blog. But what exactly is it? Where does it come from?

What does it do? Definitions of this word often associate the Expressing sorrow over both realities before the Call Follow Unlocking the Bible. Unlocking the Bible P.