- Religion and Philosophy
Yahweh is Evil - Cannibalism
Reader Discretion is Advised
Across cultures there are a few behaviors that human beings view as almost universally abhorrent or evil. Cannibalism, the act of eating human flesh, is considered one of those beliefs as it tends to exist only in remote and isolated cultures. Cannibalism is also one of the accusations that was leveled at other cultures or groups to dehumanize them and make them seem even more deserving of destruction.
Even in cultures where such behavior is considered acceptable there are usually strict cultural boundaries.
To most of us the idea of cannibalism is grotesque and vile or at the very least off-putting in the extreme. So it may some as a surprise to some that there are numerous instances in the Bible where cannibalism is part of Yahweh's plan. In this hub I'm going to talk about those instances and how they paint us a clear picture of just how evil Yahweh is.
The Curse of Disobedience
Compared to the way New Testament authors portray God the God spoken of in the Old Testament keeps his followers on a much shorter leash often lapsing into anger and on several occasions having to be talked out of slaughtering people by Moses. Disobedience to the commandments of the Lord was to be dealt with severely and in Deuteronomy 28 God lays out some of the horrible punishments he's willing to engage in.
After a laundry list of horrible things, including having their women raped, their children sold off as slaves and their towns sacked God manages to make himself out to be even more despicable by including this lovely passage.
A Merciful God?
Yes God will make sure to beat into submission the disobedient to the point that they must devour the flesh of their own children to survive and even the gentlest and kindest among them will not escape this fate. This, of course, after God has promised to send horrible diseases, famine, and all manner of other misfortune and horror down on the disobedient.
Does this sound like a merciful God who wants to set his people back on the straight and narrow? What sins could the children of Israel have possibly committed to deserve such torture? I hesitate to even term such evil as a punishment since under these consequences so many would die and others would suffer for the rest of their lives (boils that never heal). Rather than a God of mercy or goodness this sounds like one of the most evil beings ever conceived of, this sounds like the sort of demonic entity someone would cry out to be rescued FROM.
Sadly however this is not the only time in the Bible that God's “righteous” fury involves having family members forced to devour their own loved ones.
The Sights you see will drive you Mad
They Shall Eat the Flesh of their Sons and Daughters
In Jeremiah 19 Yahweh is at it again sending a prophet to deliver another dire warning of what is to come. Yahweh sends his prophet to the Valley of Ben Hinnom because here they have built altars to Baal a false (rival) storm god. Apparently the prophets of Baal have been sacrificing children as burnt offerings to Baal to earn his blessing. So you might expect a God of mercy, goodness, and righteousness to plan to rescue the children from this hellhole where they are in danger of human sacrifice and to punish the wicked men who were sacrificing them... Yahweh's actual plan, however, is to slaughter everyone in the valley so that it is renamed the Valley of Slaughter.
Cruel and Unusual
God's not upset about the human sacrifice bit, as I have shown in a previous hub that in certain contexts Yahweh does accept human sacrifices. What God is upset about is that the smell of those burnt children are wafting into the nostrils of a rival deity, a false god that his people should be above worshiping. This is why the lives of the children don't mean anything to God and, in one of the single most cruel and sadistic events in the Bible God turns around and takes children destined to be brutalized on the altar of Baal and decides to have them eaten by their own parents instead.
Stretching the Truth
Can God lie?
Perhaps Christians could argue that God is stretching the truth in his anger, that he would never actually do any of these things and is actually deceiving those who would disobey by giving them a warning they would actually heed. But of course this is the same God who they say cannot lie, which means that he is willing that all of these horrible things come to pass. Supernatural curses and evils visited upon people because they offended God. This is why so many atheists rally against the Bible, it contains horrific morals that most cultures moved beyond CENTURIES ago and to go back to the Bible is to drag moral progress backward.
Detour into the Body of Christ
Communion. No discussion of cannibalism in the Bible would be complete without at least going over this bizarre ritual. Supposedly passed on to the disciples during the Last Supper Jesus instructs them to break off a piece of bread and take some wine and think of them as his flesh and his blood.
Around the world millions and millions of Christians engage in this strange ritual of taking in some of the saviors flesh and blood.
An act of mock cannibalism that certain devout Catholics actually believed was REAL cannibalism. Transubstantiation is the miracle through which the bread, that's the little wafer that passes for unleavened bread in most churches, and the wine (or grape juice for some churches) actually transform into the blood and body of Christ as you eat them.
And yet Christianity is totally considered normal and not at all a cult by our society, despite this bizarre act of superstition.
I can recall taking Communion once a month at the Pentecostal church I attended as a kid where we ate a small tasteless wafer with a cross printed on it and drank a miniature cup of grape juice while soft hymns played in the background. The Pastor would lead us in cleansing our hearts and then read out the passage where the Eucharist is explained.
Only when I escaped and was outside of the cult did it suddenly occurred to me that I had pretended to eat the flesh and drink the blood of a 2000 year old Jewish prophet in an attempt to grow closer to his immortal spirit in some immaterial heavenly realm.
Christianity is truly a death cult, remembering the brutal ritual sacrifice of their savior by pretending to eat him... though Communion isn't really evil it is exceedingly strange and obviously superstitious.
Yahweh will leave Ben Hinnom a smoldering crater of bones and desolation for turning way from him to worship a rival of his – does that sound like a God full of wisdom, love, moral goodness to you? Or does it sound like a God that ancient HUMAN BEINGS, with ancient morals that were far more barbaric than our own, made up? To those of us outside the cult of Christianity the answer is obvious.
If the answer doesn't seem obvious to you perhaps you need to ask yourself why? Why do you think God's actions, up to and including forcing people to devour the flesh of their children, are okay? What is the justification? Could God do the same today and would you be okay with being the one to spread the warning? Are punishments like plague, famine, subjugation, and being forced into cannibalism just and righteous punishments?
The cruelty and evil of the Biblical God is painfully obvious to those with empathy who take the time to read the Bible and who are not blinded by indoctrination or cult-mentality. The Biblical God is inconsistent because he was conceived of and written about by flawed human authors. God is an invention of man and that is why at times he reflects man's better nature, of forgiveness, love and mercy and other times he reflects the cruelty of man, our pettiness, our ignorance and our most potent forms of evil.
Other Evidence that Yahweh is Evil
- Yahweh is Evil
The deity the Bible depicts is morally repugnant and arguably one of the most evil characters ever described.
- Yahweh is Evil - Slavery
A hub about the evils of the Biblical God focusing on scriptures in which the God of the Bible condones slavery.
- Yahweh is Evil - Human Sacrifice Edition
A series about the Bible and the evil God it depicts. Evidence that Yahweh accepts human sacrifices.