Child Sacrifice And a Very Nasty God...Very Nasty!

We’ve been discussing child sacrifice here, and at the risk of being accused that I’m changing topics, let me show exactly what kind of God Christians are trying to defend.

We left off discussing Micah 6:6-8, where the divinely inspired prophet wrote these words:
With what shall I come before the Lord, and bow down before God on high. Should I come before him with burnt offerings, with calves a year old? Does the Lord want a thousand rams, with myriads of rivers of fat? Should I give by oldest son as a sin offering, the fruit of my belly as a sin offering for my soul? He has showed you, O man, what is good. And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.
What Micah was doing is trying to find the very best ways to please God, so he mentioned what he considered the best things. And it says he considered sacrificing a child along with the other sacrifices God demanded in order to please him. The fact that God tells Micah he only wants justice and mercy does not undercut that Micah believed child sacrifice was acceptable to God, for it’s listed among other types of sacrifices that ARE pleasing to God. Nor does it undercut that God demanded child sacrifices (Exodus 22:29; Ezekiel 20: 25-26). God certainly didn’t condemn Jepthah, and he even requested it of Abraham with no condemnation against the practice. God didn't even chastise Micah for suggesting such a thing, which is what any perfectly good God would do. I would say so to Micah, and I’m not a perfectly good God!

It just appears to me that many Christians take a caviler approach to the extremely nasty God they claim to worship, when he's supposed to be perfected love itself.

Christian, how do you reconcile that view you have of your perfectly loving and reasonable God with the following passage, where it only seems to condemn child sacrifice to "other" gods:

From Jeremiah 19:

"You shall say, ‘Hear the word of the Lord, O kings of Judah and inhabitants of Jerusalem. Thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, Behold, I am bringing such evil upon this place that the ears of every one who hears of it will tingle. 4 Because the people have forsaken me, and have profaned this place by burning incense in it to other gods whom neither they nor their fathers nor the kings of Judah have known; and because they have filled this place with the blood of innocents, 5 and have built the high places of Baal to burn their sons in the fire as burnt offerings to Baal, which I did not command or decree, nor did it come into my mind; 6 therefore, behold, days are coming, says the Lord, when this place shall no more be called Topheth, or the valley of the son of Hinnom, but the valley of Slaughter. 7 And in this place I will make void the plans of Judah and Jerusalem, and will cause their people to fall by the sword before their enemies, and by the hand of those who seek their life. I will give their dead bodies for food to the birds of the air and to the beasts of the earth. 8 And I will make this city a horror, a thing to be hissed at; every one who passes by it will be horrified and will hiss because of all its disasters. 9 And I will make them eat the flesh of their sons and their daughters, and every one shall eat the flesh of his neighbor in the siege and in the distress, with which their enemies and those who seek their life afflict them.’
Christian, how do you reconcile the God of reason, the God of perfect love, with the ways he dealt with people who worship other gods? This is some very nasty stuff here. He will make them eat the flesh of their children and neighbors! And how do you reconcile the number of lives lost as a result of God's actions with the number of children sacrificed? Let's see, a few children are being killed, so I'll slaughter them all!?!? As a result of God’s actions many more children will die and/or be fatherless, and/or be eaten. It does not make any sense at all. What difference does it make to God whether people sacrifice their children or they eat them? In either case innocent children are still being killed!

Besides, there are much better ways to handle such things, out of love. Merely send them a prophet who can do great miracles in their midst and let him tell them this is plainly forbidden. Better yet, why not just make one of the ten commandments: "Thou shalt not sacrifice or kill any man woman or child to me," and say it as often as needed without also allowing the conflicting messages and lack of condemnation for such practices elsewhere in the Bible, like asking Abraham to do it and not also condemn such a practice, or like letting Jepthah do it without sending a prophet to him to tell him it’s forbidden?

The God we're talking about is based upon the reflections and musings of an ancient superstitious barbaric people, plain and simple.

This is the best and simplest explanation for what we find in the Bible.

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