4/11/2014 | Share this article: View CommentsBy Carl S. ~
The biblical Abraham is used as an example of virtue and its reward in three Abrahamic religions. Have you read the whole story of Abraham‘s test, in detail? Sure, children are taught he is to be emulated as an example of obedience to his god; indeed, he is, according to the text, exceedingly rewarded beyond his expectations. I looked into the story, in my Bible, as written in Genesis, ch.22. It begins:
God tested Abraham. He said to him, “Abraham!” And he said, “Here I am.” He said, “Take your son, your ONLY son, Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah (they call the land, Moriah) and offer him there as a BURNT OFFERING on one of the mountains that I shall show you. (Sometimes it’s hard to ﬁgure out who is talking, or if ol’ A-ham is hearing his own voice.)
So Abraham rose early in the morning. saddled his ass, and took two of his young men with him, and his son Isaac. He cut the wood for the burnt offering and set out and went to the place in the distance that God had shown him. On the THIRD DAY, Abraham looked up and saw the place far away.
Then Abraham said to his young men, “Stay here with the donkey; the boy and I will go over there, we will worship, and then WE WILL COME BACK TO YOU.”
Abraham took the wood of the burnt offering, and laid it on his son Isaac, and he himself carried the FIRE and the knife. So the two of them walked on together.
Isaac said to his father Abraham, ”Father!” And he said, “Here I am my son.” He said, “The fire and the wood are here, but where is the lamb for the burnt offering?” Abraham said. “GOD HIMSELF WILL PROVIDE THE LAMB FOR A BURNT OFFERING, MY SON.” So the two of them walked on together.
Is he (Abraham) any different from someone beholden to and fearful of the Mafia godfather? When they came to the place that God had shown him, Abraham built an altar there and laid the wood in order. He bound his son Isaac (No questions, Isaac?) and laid him on the altar, on top of the wood. Then Abraham reached out his hand and took the knife TO KILL HIS SON...
And he was prepared to burn the body!
Let’s consider the morality of this Abraham. He lies to his servants, obviously, to his wife, and to the son he is about to kill. He is determined to do the deed the invisible voice tells him to do. Is he any different from someone beholden to and fearful of the Mafia godfather? Is he trading in his own son‘s life for favors he can't refuse? And if you think about it, it‘s unlikely a man would kill his own son or daughter willingly this way. (A brother or double-crossing buddy, maybe.)
The God-father told someone else (according to the book these religions invoke ) to build an ark and watch his friends and neighbors drown, including their children, livestock and pets; without warning them, of course - can't have a rush to come aboard, can we? Of course, Noah, the “just” man, gets stinking drunk. But who wouldn't, under the circumstances. Even the lord says that he won’t drown everyone ever again, because, after all, ALL humans are by nature corrupt. Of course, Noah and kin are included. In other words, “I saved you, but you're just as bad as the others.” Oy vay!
There are many examples throughout religious history of lying, cheating, and especially killing for the God-father. The scriptures are full of them. This prep-for-killing time isn't the first time Abraham lies. For quite a while he passed off his wife as his sister! Amazing, for role models, how the lord picks so many bad ones!