It’s not always easy evaluating content. Assessing quality (over quantity) can be time-consuming. Leaning heavily on my own thinking/understanding or (fleeting) emotions about various matters can be disastrous. It’s tricky, at times, deciphering information for accuracy/top-quality.
Rash-dash decisions…dangerous & deadly, eh?
Appreciated this wise counsel:) which i am/have been “endeavoring” to personally apply…
Reports that contain half-truths or incomplete information are another challenge to reaching accurate conclusions. A story that is only 10 percent true is 100 percent misleading.
Obtaining the facts and evaluating them accurately present a challenge today because of the abundance of low-quality information, reports filled with half-truths, and our own imperfection. What will help us with this challenging task? We must know and apply Bible principles. One such principle is that it is foolish and humiliating to reply to a matter before hearing the facts. (Prov. 18:13) Another Bible principle reminds us not to accept every word without question. (Prov. 14:15) And finally, no matter how much experience we have in Christian living, we must be careful not to lean on our own understanding. (Prov. 3:5, 6) Bible principles will safeguard us if we are certain to use facts from reliable sources to draw good conclusions and to make wise decisions. [excerpted: Do You Have the Facts? w 8/2018]
Does poor-quality content lead to poor-quality choices? Sure thing!;)
Christendom’s Clergy (including the Puppet/Pope) sing such a silly song…(of denial of ACCOUNTABILITY)!! They have utterly failed to teach the TRUTH. People are suffering as a result of eating lies. The spiritually (aka ethically/morally) confused/bankrupt/impoverished state of so-called Christian societies…is Christendom’s leaders’ and (duped by their duplicity) followers’ rotten fruit —millions massacred:( and millions(?) molested!!
🙁 — of their no labors.
For centuries the clergy of Christendom had failed to impart the knowledge of Jehovah, replacing it with man-made traditions and unscriptural doctrines. [excerpted: Righteousness Sprouts in Zion, Isaiah’s Prophecy II; Chp 22, pp 321-334]
Come on People, Don’t Forget now…a history reminder needed?
Guenter Lewy writes: “Had German Catholicism from the start adhered to a policy of resolute opposition to the Nazi regime, world history might well have taken a different course. Even if this struggle had ultimately failed to defeat Hitler and prevent all of his many crimes, it would in this view have raised the moral prestige of the Church immeasurably. The human cost of such resistance would undeniably have been great, but these sacrifices would have been made for the greatest of all causes. With the home front unreliable, Hitler might not have dared going to war and literally millions of lives would have been saved…When thousands of German anti-Nazis were tortured to death in Hitler’s concentration camps, when the Polish intelligentsia was slaughtered, when hundreds of thousands of Russians died as a result of being treated as Slavic Untermenschen [subhumans], and when 6,000,000 human beings were murdered for being ‘non-Aryan,’ Catholic Church officials in Germany bolstered the regime perpetrating these crimes. The Pope in Rome, the spiritual head and supreme moral teacher of the Roman Catholic Church, remained silent.” ~ The Catholic Church and Nazi Germany pages 320, 341.
“Pope Pius XI remarked to the German envoys how pleased he was that “the German Government now had at its head a man uncompromisingly opposed to Communism,” and on July 20, 1933, at an elaborate ceremony in the Vatican, Cardinal Pacelli (who was soon to become Pope Pius XII) signed the concordat.”
One historian writes: “The Concordat [with the Vatican] was a great victory for Hitler. It gave him the first moral support he had received from the outer world, and this from the most exalted source.” During the celebrations at the Vatican, Pacelli conferred on von Papen the high papal decoration of the Grand Cross of the Order of Pius. Winston Churchill, in his book The Gathering Storm,published in 1948, tells how von Papen further used “his reputation as a good Catholic” to gain church support for the Nazi takeover of Austria. In 1938, in honor of Hitler’s birthday, Cardinal Innitzer ordered that all Austrian churches fly the swastika flag, ring their bells, and pray for the Nazi dictator.”
I WILL NEVER SUPPORT (A) RELIGION(S) THAT HELPED (PUT) HITLER (IN POWER) (period)!!!
One who was “a master of crowd psychology as well as a brilliant orator” was Adolf Hitler. Like many demagogues of the past, says Dick Geary in Hitler and Nazism, Hitler believed that ‘the masses were swayed not by their brains but by their emotions.’ He played on this human weakness by cleverly exploiting the age-old technique of directing people’s hatred against a common enemy—as when he “turned the fears and resentments of Germans against the Jews,” says Purcell. Hitler vilified the Jews, saying, ‘The Jew is the corrupter of the German nation.’
What is horrifying about this whole era is that millions of seemingly decent people were easily incited to mass murder. “How could the people of a supposedly civilised country not simply tolerate but become implicated in the horrific barbarism of the Nazi state?” asks Geary. And it was not just a “civilised” country but also supposedly a Christian country! They were drawn into this because they preferred the philosophies and schemes of men to the teachings of Jesus Christ. And how many sincere, idealistic men and women have been led into horrific atrocities since then!
“What experience and history teach is this,” says German philosopher Georg Hegel, “that nations and governments have never learned anything from history or acted upon any lessons they might have drawn from it.” [excerpted article: The Nations are Still Not Learning]
Can i detect/see/understand the abusive-emotional-control (churches/religions have/hold sway on/over people) emerge/correlate (at times)…i.e., birth, baptism, marriage, divorce, death…holiday(s)…pocketbook…future: hellfire or heaven??!
I am NOT going to let the Big Bad Wolf huff and puff and blow down my house/my spirituality…cause it’s made of brick beliefs (foundation Biblical Truth)!!🙂
[…] Two vicious world wars have been fought involving so-called Christian nations. Down to the present, Christendom’s form of religion has proved powerless to stop ethnic cleansing and intertribal slaughter among her own members. (2 Timothy 3:5) Although Jesus taught his followers to trust in God’s Kingdom, the nations of Christendom continue to rely for security on military arsenals and political alliances. (Matthew 6:10) Indeed, most of the world’s major arms producers are found in the nations of Christendom! Yes, when Christendom trusts in human efforts and institutions for a secure future, she too is trusting in “unreality.” [excerpted: Isaiah’s Prophecy II p 302]
Yanking weeds? Yep!…for healthy spiritual garden growth…a necessary!:) Check out these eye-opening excerpts from article: Is Religion at the Root of Mankind’s Problems? W 04
According to the Bible, there is a very simple answer. Posing as “an angel of light,” Satan the Devil has misled millions into following his teachings rather than God’s. (2 Corinthians 11:14) The apostle John showed that Satan’s influence is so extensive that “the whole world is lying in the power of the wicked one.” (1 John 5:19) John knew that Satan was “misleading the entire inhabited earth.”—Revelation 12:9.
What have been the consequences of this? Satan has promoted religious systems that on the surface appear to be holy. They have “a façade of ‘religion,’” but their true condition is exposed by the evil fruitage they produce. (2 Timothy 3:5, J. B. Phillips; Matthew 7:15-20) Instead of helping to solve mankind’s problems, religion actually becomes part of the problem.
Do not quickly dismiss that idea as being farfetched or unreasonable. Remember, the very nature of deception is that the one being deceived is unaware of it. The apostle Paul gave an example of this when he wrote: “The things which the nations sacrifice they sacrifice to demons, and not to God.” (1 Corinthians 10:20) Those people would likely have been shocked to think that they were worshiping demons. They thought that they were worshiping a good god, or gods, of some kind. Yet, in reality they had been deceived by “wicked spirit forces in the heavenly places,” who support Satan in his efforts to mislead mankind.—Ephesians 6:12.
“What I teach,” said Jesus Christ, “is not mine, but belongs to him that sent me.” (John 7:16) Yes, what he taught was from Almighty God. So Jesus’ teachings had a powerful, uplifting effect on those who listened to him. They did not ‘numb the human conscience or fill the human brain with escapist fantasies.’ On the contrary, Jesus’ teachings set people free from religious error and human philosophies produced by a world that was “in darkness mentally” because of the Devil’s deception.—Ephesians 4:18; Matthew 15:14; John 8:31, 32.
True Christians were identified, not by a mere profession of piety, but by a faith that reflected the beautiful qualities produced by God’s holy spirit. (Galatians 5:22, 23; James 1:22; 2:26) Outstanding among these qualities—and the identifying mark of genuine Christianity—is the sublime quality of love.—John 13:34, 35.
Note this crucial point, however: Neither Jesus nor his apostles expected the Christian congregation to continue in the form in which it was originally established. They knew that apostasy would develop and that the true religion would be overshadowed for a time.
True Religion Hidden for a Time
In an illustration about wheat and weeds, Jesus foretold that true religion would be virtually obscured for a time. Read the account for yourself at Matthew 13:24-30, 36-43. Jesus sowed a field with wheat, “the fine seed,” which pictured his faithful disciples who would make up the original Christian congregation. He warned that “an enemy,” Satan the Devil, would in time oversow the wheat field with “weeds”—people who professed to follow Jesus Christ but who in fact rejected his teachings.
Very soon after the death of Jesus’ apostles, individuals appeared who proved to be “weeds,” favoring twisted human teachings over “the very word of Jehovah.” (Jeremiah 8:8, 9; Acts 20:29, 30) As a consequence, a perverted, counterfeit Christianity appeared on the world stage. It was dominated by what the Bible calls “the lawless one”—a corrupt clergy class that was itself steeped in “every unrighteous deception.” (2 Thessalonians 2:6-10) Jesus foretold that this situation would change “in the conclusion of the system of things.” The wheatlike Christians would be collected together in unity and “the weeds” would eventually be destroyed.
It is this counterfeit Christianity that bears responsibility for the “centuries of unredeemed barbarism” and spiritual darkness that enveloped Christendom in the centuries that followed. Foreseeing this and all the other depraved and violent acts done since then in the name of religion, the apostle Peter rightly predicted that “on account of these [professed Christians] the way of the truth [would] be spoken of abusively.”—2 Peter 2:1, 2.
“A Theology of Rage and Hatred”
It certainly is not just Christendom that has given religion a poor reputation. Think of the fundamentalist versions of “militant piety,” for example, that former nun Karen Armstrong says have been spawned by “every major religious tradition.” According to Armstrong, one crucial test of any religion is that it should lead to “practical compassion.” What has been the record of fundamentalist religions in this regard? “Fundamentalist faith,” she writes, “be it Jewish, Christian, or Muslim, fails this crucial test if it becomes a theology of rage and hatred.” (The Battle for God—Fundamentalism in Judaism, Christianity and Islam) But is it only the “fundamentalist” brand of religion that has failed this test and become “a theology of rage and hatred”? History shows otherwise.
Satan has, in fact, built up a world empire of falsereligion, identified by rage, hatred, and almost endless bloodshed. The Bible calls this empire “Babylon the Great, the mother . . . of the disgusting things of the earth,” and it is pictured as a prostitute who rides on the back of a beastlike political system. It is noteworthy that she is held accountable for “the blood . . . of all those who have been slaughtered on the earth.”—Revelation 17:4-6; 18:24.
Not Everyone Has Been Deceived
History proves, however, that not everyone has been deceived. Even in the darkest of times, notes Melvyn Bragg, “many fine souls did good when most around them were evil.” Genuine Christians continued to “worship [God] with spirit and truth.” (John 4:21-24) They stood apart from a worldwide religious system that had prostituted itself as “a reinforcer of military power.” They refused to be drawn into a working relationship of Church and State that history reveals as “more a pact made by Satan than any Jesus of Nazareth.”—Two Thousand Years—The Second Millennium: From Medieval Christendom to Global Christianity.
In more recent times, Jehovah’s Witnesses have been noted for their influence for good. To keep free from any taint of false religion, they have based their beliefs and actions solely on God’s inspired Word, the Bible. (2 Timothy 3:16, 17) And like first-century Christians, they have followed Jesus’ command to be “no part of the world.” (John 15:17-19;17:14-16) In Nazi Germany, for example, they refused to compromise Christian principles and therefore were not acceptable according to Nazi ideology. Hitler hated them for it. Says one school textbook: “Jehovah’s Witnesses . . . followed the teaching of the Bible not to take up weapons in any cause. So they refused to serve in the army or to have anything to do with the Nazis. In retaliation, the SS imprisoned whole families of Jehovah’s Witnesses.” (Germany—1918-45) Indeed, hundreds of Jehovah’s Witnesses in Germany died as a result of the Nazi persecution.
Of course, other courageous individuals of various religions suffered for their beliefs. But Jehovah’s Witnesses did this as a united religious body. By far the majority held firm to the fundamental Scriptural principle: “Obey God as ruler rather than men.”—Acts 5:29; Mark 12:17.
The Root of the Problem
So it is only partly true that religion lies at the root of all of mankind’s problems. False religion does. Yet, God intends to remove all false religion very soon now. (Revelation 17:16, 17; 18:21) His command to anyone who loves justice and righteousness is: “Get out of her [that is, Babylon the Great, the world empire of false religion], my people, if you do not want to share with her in her sins, and if you do not want to receive part of her plagues. For her sins have massed together clear up to heaven, and God has called her acts of injustice to mind.” (Revelation 18:4, 5) Yes, God himself is deeply offended by religion that ‘encourages strife, numbs the human conscience, fills the brain with escapist fantasies, and causes people to be narrow-minded, superstitious, and full of hatred and fear’!
Genuine? or counterfeit?…(that is the question!)
Building spirituality with Bricks? or sticks?
(A time to) draw(ing) straws? Conditional Probability?
Am i teachable?!…thinking this is an important question for self-reflection.
What does it mean to be “teachable” ? Hmmm, hoping this post is a “teachable” moment of/in time:)
a : capable of being taught b : apt and willing to learn 2 : favorable to teaching
(Merriam-Webster On-line definition)
May be? some of us have come across a kid or person who was very eager and enthusiastic to learn. Then, on the flip side, perhaps, we can recall another who is/was balking/unwilling to cooperate whatsoever in the process of learning something new. You grasp what i mean?…If some of us are like sponges, then are some of us like “Patrick”? -lol:)
Duh! joanie, the teachable inherit…’Bikini Bottom’?;)… ‘a.naw’ (nah)!…”Earth”…please, notice these “Hebrew” scriptures:)…my highlights…
“But the meek will possess the earth, And they will find exquisite delight in the abundance of peace.” (Psalm 37:11)
“The meek will rejoice greatly in Jehovah, And the poor among men will be joyful in the Holy One of Israel.”
“He will guide the meek in what is right,*(Lit., “in judgment.”) And he will teach the meek ones his way. (Psalm 25:9)
8 Let go of anger and abandon rage;
Do not become upset and turn to doing evil. *(Or possibly, “Do not become upset, for it can only lead to harm.”)
9 For evil men will be done away with,
But those hoping in Jehovah will possess the earth.
10 Just a little while longer, and the wicked will be no more;
You will look at where they were,
And they will not be there. (Psalm 37:8-10)
i LOVE this…please check it out further readings on Meekness🙂
A mildness of temper, without haughtiness or vanity. The mental disposition that enables one to endure injury with patience and without irritation, resentment, or vindictive retaliation. It is a close companion of and seldom found separate from such other virtues as humility, lowliness of mind, and gentleness. (See HUMILITY; MILDNESS.) The Hebrew word translated “meek” (ʽa·nawʹ) comes from the root ʽa·nahʹ, which means “afflict, humble, humiliate.” [excerpted: Insight on Scriptures, Vol. 2, p. 364]
Meekness is NOT a weakness, but a strength…it is not a mock humility; the quality is steel-like…
False humility can actually result in developing haughtiness in the individual, for he may tend to think he is righteous on his own merit; or he may feel that he is accomplishing his ends, not realizing that he cannot deceive Jehovah. If haughtiness develops, he will in time be humbled in a way that he will not enjoy. He will be brought low, and it may be to his own destruction.—Pr 18:12; 29:23. [excerpted: “humility,” Insight Vol. 1]
Jesus Christ’s Humility. Jesus Christ, when on earth, set the greatest example of a humble servant of God. On the evening before his death, Jesus girded himself with a towel and washed and dried the feet of each of his 12 apostles, a service customarily performed by menials and slaves. (Joh 13:2-5, 12-17) He had told his disciples: “Whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted.” (Mt 23:12; Lu 14:11) The apostle Peter, present that night, remembered Jesus’ fine example in living up to his words. He later admonished fellow believers: “All of you gird yourselves with lowliness of mind toward one another . . . Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time.”—1Pe 5:5, 6.
Two other Hebrew verbs involving “humility” are ka·naʽʹ (literally, subdue [oneself]) and sha·phelʹ (literally, be or become low). In the Christian Greek Scriptures the word ta·pei·no·phro·syʹne is translated “humility” and “lowliness of mind.” It is drawn from the words ta·pei·noʹo, “make low,” and phren, “the mind.”
A person can achieve a state of humility by reasoning on his relationship to God and to his fellowmen, as outlined in the Bible, and then practicing the principles learned. A Hebrew word, hith·rap·pesʹ, translated “humble yourself,” means, literally, “stamp yourself down.” It well expresses the action described by the wise writer of Proverbs: “My son, if you have gone surety for your fellowman, . . . if you have been ensnared by the sayings of your mouth, . . . you have come into the palm of your fellowman: Go humble yourself [stamp yourself down] and storm your fellowman with importunities. . . . Deliver yourself.” (Pr 6:1-5) In other words, throw away your pride, acknowledge your mistake, set matters straight, and seek forgiveness. Jesus admonished that a person humble himself before God like a child and that, instead of trying to be prominent, he minister to or serve his brothers.—Mt 18:4; 23:12.
Or, a person may learn humility by being brought low, humbled by experience. Jehovah told Israel that he humbled them by causing them to walk 40 years in the wilderness in order to put them to the test so as to know what was in their heart and to make them know that “not by bread alone does man live but by every expression of Jehovah’s mouth does man live.” (De 8:2, 3) Many of the Israelites no doubt profited from this severe experience and gained humility from it. (Compare Le 26:41;2Ch 7:14; 12:6, 7.) If a person or a nation refuses to become humble or to accept humbling discipline, such will suffer humiliation in due time.—Pr 15:32, 33; Isa 2:11;5:15. [excerpted readings: “humility,” Insight Vol. 1]
“noun form pra·yʹtes “
A New Testament Wordbook, by William Barclay, says of the adjective pra·ysʹ: “In classical Greek this is a lovely word. Of things it means ‘gentle’. It is used, for instance, of a gentle breeze or a gentle voice. Of persons it means ‘mild’ or ‘gracious’. . . . There is gentleness in praus but behind the gentleness there is the strength of steel . . . It is not a spineless gentleness, a sentimental fondness, a passive quietism.” (London, 1956, pp. 103, 104) Vine’s Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words states that the noun form pra·yʹtes “consists not in a person’s ‘outward behaviour only; nor yet in his relations to his fellow-men; as little in his mere natural disposition. Rather it is an in wrought grace of the soul; and the exercises of it are first and chiefly towards God. It is that temper of spirit in which we accept His dealings with us as good, and therefore without disputing or resisting; it is closely linked with the word tapeinophrosunē [humility], and follows directly upon it.’”—1981, Vol. 3, pp. 55, 56.
The word pra·ysʹ is variously translated in Bible versions “meek,” “mild,” “mild-tempered,” and “gentle.” (KJ, AS, NW, NE) However, as expressed in Barclay’s work quoted in the foregoing, pra·ysʹ goes somewhat deeper than gentleness and, when used of persons, means mild, gracious. [excerpted: Mildness, Insight Vol. 2]
Manifesting Meekness, Gentleness, Graciousness, yet NOT a spineless, stupid creature!! 🙂
(to be meek is to be teachable (which implies a continuous state))
Just discovered this new (well, new to me) little kids’ show…(while sitting at Dentist’s office/waiting area this morning w/daughter)…have always loved the Muppets as kid and adult..”Kermie” is my favorite… and Miss Piggie 2nd. Ironically, am much more into Muppets than my kids..um, teens;) and probably will ever be. (Yes, she/me is an oddly odd older one and Note to self, get over the basic alliteration, bones, already!)
Fun waiting at the dentist today..fun, jokey small talk with assistant and Doc… don’t know what our dentist quite thinks… me asking IF he dreams of teeth and whether he played dentist or with play-dough teeth as a little boy.
Just trying to keep it light and fun… and laughey before the dreaded needle… was today’s “missing” laughing gas..which they do not utilize at this location… this causes my daughter to incrementally, face and be exposed to her strong dislike/at one time intense fear/hatred of needles.
Okay, this is Joanie’s show n tell time… aka intriguing answers to Bible questions obscure or otherwise encountered through the years… (my daughter informs me today that other cultures don’t have small talk and that my friendliness would be considered RUDE!! She’s correct… oh god, another know-it-all teen??… just joking, she’s not like that (too) much… You can reason and converse with her about deep stuff and she actually listens!!:))
Enough small ramblings… and Yes, obviously, by 49 I have matured and don’t regularly feed my mind on “Muppets”..and have accepted since childhood they are not real creatures..Duh, though they teach lessons. But some lessons/tough topics require adults communicating directly to their kids. What happens to kids IF we parents abdicate our teaching role or neglect it…
Following the incident regarding Noah’s drunkenness, Canaan came under Noah’s prophetic curse foretelling that Canaan would become the slave of both Shem and Japheth. (Ge 9:20-27) Since the record mentions only that “Ham the father of Canaan saw his father’s nakedness and went telling it to his two brothers outside,” the question arises as to why Canaan rather than Ham became the object of the curse. Commenting on Genesis 9:24, which states that when Noah awoke from his wine he “got to know what his youngest son had done to him,” a footnote in Rotherham’s translation says: “Undoubtedly Canaan, and not Ham: Shem and Japheth, for their piety, are blessed; Canaan, for some unnamed baseness, is cursed; Ham, for his neglect, is neglected.” Similarly, a Jewish publication, The Pentateuch and Haftorahs, suggests that the brief narrative “refers to some abominable deed in which Canaan seems to have been implicated.” (Edited by J. H. Hertz, London, 1972, p. 34) And, after noting that the Hebrew word translated “son” in verse 24 may mean “grandson,” this source states: “The reference is evidently to Canaan.” The Soncino Chumash also points out that some believe Canaan “indulged a perverted lust upon [Noah],” and that the expression “youngest son” refers to Canaan, who was the youngest son of Ham.—Edited by A. Cohen, London, 1956, p. 47.
The prophetic element of the curse must also be considered. There is no evidence to indicate that Canaan himself became the slave of Shem or Japheth during his lifetime. But, God’s foreknowledge was at work, and since the curse expressed by Noah was divinely inspired, and since God’s disfavor is not expressed without just cause, it is likely that Canaan had already manifested a definitely corrupt trait, perhaps of a lustful nature, and that God foresaw the bad results in which this characteristic would eventually culminate among Canaan’s descendants. In the earlier case of Cain, Jehovah had noted a wrong heart attitude and had warned Cain of the danger of being overcome by sin (Ge 4:3-7); God also had discerned the unreformable bent toward wickedness on the part of the majority of the pre-Flood population, making their destruction warranted. (Ge 6:5) The most obvious evidence of the justness of the curse placed on Canaan is thus seen in the later history of his descendants, for they built up a particularly sordid record of immorality and depravity, as both Biblical and secular history testify. The curse on Canaan saw its fulfillment some eight centuries after its pronouncement, when Canaan’s descendants were subjugated by the Semitic Israelites, later coming under the domination of the Japhetic powers of Medo-Persia, Greece, and Rome. [reference: “Canaan” Insight Vol. 1]
further excerpted past readings…”Canaan” Insight Vol. 1
The justness of God’s prophetic curse on Canaan found full confirmation in the conditions that had developed in Canaan by the time of the Israelite conquest. Jehovah had allowed 400 years from Abraham’s time for the ‘error of the Amorites to come to completion.’ (Ge 15:16) The fact that Esau’s Hittite wives were “a source of bitterness of spirit to Isaac and Rebekah” to the extent that Rebekah had ‘come to abhor her life because of them’ is certainly an indication of the badness already manifest among the Canaanites. (Ge 26:34, 35; 27:46) During the centuries that followed, the land of Canaan became saturated with detestable practices of idolatry, immorality, and bloodshed. The Canaanite religion was extraordinarily base and degraded, their “sacred poles” evidently being phallic symbols, and many of the rites at their “high places” involving gross sexual excesses and depravity. (Ex 23:24; 34:12, 13; Nu 33:52; De 7:5) Incest, sodomy, and bestiality were part of ‘the way of the land of Canaan’ that made the land unclean and for which error it was due to “vomit its inhabitants out.” (Le 18:2-25) Magic, spellbinding, spiritism, and sacrifice of their children by fire were also among the Canaanites’ detestable practices.—De 18:9-12.
Baal was the most prominent of the deities worshiped by the Canaanites. (Jg 2:12, 13; compare Jg 6:25-32; 1Ki 16:30-32.) The Canaanite goddesses Ashtoreth (Jg 2:13; 10:6; 1Sa 7:3, 4), Asherah, and Anath are presented in an Egyptian text as both mother-goddesses and as sacred prostitutes who, paradoxically, remain ever-virgin (literally, “the great goddesses who conceive but do not bear”). Their worship apparently was invariably involved with the services of temple prostitutes. These goddesses symbolized the quality not only of sexual lust but also of sadistic violence and warfare. Thus, the goddess Anath is depicted in the Baal Epic from Ugarit as effecting a general slaughter of men and then decorating herself with suspended heads and attaching men’s hands to her girdle while she joyfully wades in their blood. The figurines of the goddess Ashtoreth that have been discovered in Palestine are of a nude woman with rudely exaggerated sex organs. Of their phallic worship, archaeologist W. F. Albright observes that: “At its worst, . . . the erotic aspect of their cult must have sunk to extremely sordid depths of social degradation.”—Archaeology and the Religion of Israel, 1968, pp. 76, 77;[…].
Added to their other degrading practices was that of child sacrifice. According to Merrill F. Unger: “Excavations in Palestine have uncovered piles of ashes and remains of infant skeletons in cemeteries around heathen altars, pointing to the widespread practice of this cruel abomination.” (Archaeology and the Old Testament, 1964, p. 279) Halley’s Bible Handbook (1964, p. 161) says: “Canaanites worshipped, by immoral indulgence, as a religious rite, in the presence of their gods; and then, by murdering their first-born children, as a sacrifice to these same gods. It seems that, in large measure, the land of Canaan had become a sort of Sodom and Gomorrah on a national scale. . . . Did a civilization of such abominable filth and brutality have any right longer to exist? . . . Archaeologists who dig in the ruins of Canaanite cities wonder that God did not destroy them sooner than he did.”—PICTURE, Vol. 1, p. 739.
Ham was the father of four sons, Cush, Mizraim, Put, and Canaan. (Ge 10:6; 1Ch 1:8) The Ethiopians, Egyptians, some Arabian and African tribes, and the Canaanites descended from these sons. While it is claimed that some of the Hamitic tribes and nations listed in Genesis chapter 10 spoke a Semitic language, this does not weigh against their being of Hamitic descent or their having originally spoken a Hamitic tongue. Many peoples adopted the language of their conquerors, of other peoples with whom they associated, or of the land to which they migrated.
Ham married before the Flood. Along with his wife, his father and mother, and his two brothers and their wives, he survived the Flood. (Ge 6:18; 7:13; 8:15, 16, 18; 1Pe 3:19, 20) Ham’s sons were born after the Flood.
Sometime later he became involved in an incident that brought a curse on his son Canaan. Noah had become intoxicated with wine and had uncovered himself in his tent. Ham saw his father’s nakedness, and instead of showing the proper respect for Noah, the family head and the servant and prophet whom God had made an instrument in the preservation of the human race, Ham told his two brothers of his discovery. Shem and Japheth exhibited the proper respect by walking backwards with a mantle to cover Noah so that they would not bring reproach by looking on their father’s nakedness. Noah, on awakening, uttered a curse, not on Ham, but on Ham’s son Canaan. In the accompanying blessing of Shem, which included a blessing for Japheth, Ham was passed over and ignored; only Canaan was mentioned as cursed and was prophetically foretold to become a slave to Shem and Japheth.—Ge 9:20-27.
It is possible that Canaan himself had been involved directly in the incident and that his father Ham had failed to correct him. Or Noah, speaking prophetically by inspiration, foresaw that the bad tendency in Ham, perhaps already manifest in his son Canaan, would be inherited by Canaan’s offspring. The curse was partly fulfilled when the Semitic Israelites subjugated the Canaanites. Those who were not destroyed (for example, the Gibeonites [Jos 9]) were made slaves to Israel. Centuries later, the curse was further fulfilled when descendants of Ham’s son Canaan came under the domination of the Japhetic world powers of Medo-Persia, Greece, and Rome.
Some persons have incorrectly held that the black race and enslavement of members of that race resulted from the curse pronounced upon Canaan. On the contrary, the descendants of Canaan, the cursed one, were not of the black race. The black race descended from Cush and possibly from Put, other sons of Ham who were not involved in the incident or the curse. [excerpted: “Ham” Insight on Scriptures, Vol. 1]
4. Did not the Canaanites’ destruction conflict with God’s love? On the surface, God’s exterminating the Canaanites might seem inconsistent with his love. (1 John 4:8) However, that love becomes quite apparent when we take a closer look.
God knew long beforehand that Canaan’s inhabitants were headed in the wrong direction. Yet, instead of immediately wiping them out, he patiently allowed 400 years to pass until their error had “come to completion.”—Genesis 15:16.
When the sin of the Canaanites reached the point where all hope of improvement was gone, Jehovah brought their end. Even so, he did not blindly execute all Canaanites. Why? Because not all were beyond reform. Those willing to change, such as Rahab and the Gibeonites, were shown mercy.—Joshua 9:3-11, 16-27; Hebrews 11:31.
5. How could a God of love destroy any humans? That question is understandable, for the destruction of human life is not pleasant to contemplate. Really, though, it was God’s love that impelled him to take such drastic measures against the wicked. To illustrate: When a patient develops gangrene, doctors often have little choice but to amputate the infected limb. Few would enjoy performing such a procedure, but a good doctor knows that the alternative—the spread of infection—is worse. Because he cares, he carries out this unpleasant task for the good of his patient.
Similarly, Jehovah did not enjoy destroying the Canaanites. He himself says: “I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked.” (Ezekiel 33:11, Darby) At the same time, he purposed for the nation of Israel to produce the Messiah, the one who would open the way to salvation for all those exercising faith. (John 3:16) Thus, God simply could not allow Israel to become infected by the disgusting practices of the Canaanites. He therefore ordered the Canaanites to be cut off, or evicted, from the land. In so doing, God demonstrated outstanding love—love that moved him to perform an unpleasant task for the benefit of his faithful worshippers.
Value for Us
Does the record of the Canaanites’ destruction have value for us today? Yes, for Romans 15:4 states: “All the things that were written aforetime were written for our instruction, that through our endurance and through the comfort from the Scriptures we might have hope.” How does what happened in Canaan instruct us and give us hope?
These accounts teach us much. For example, God mercifully spared Rahab and the Gibeonites when they turned to him in faith. This reminds us that anyone who truly wants to please God can do so, regardless of his background or past sins.—Acts 17:30.
Accounts of the destruction in Canaan also give us hope by providing us with a preview of what God will do in the near future. They assure us that he will not allow evil to snuff out good completely. Rather, the Bible affirms that he will soon act to destroy all wicked ones, whereas he will deliver those who love him into a righteous new world. (2 Peter 2:9; Revelation 21:3, 4) At that time, these comforting words will be fulfilled: “Hope in Jehovah and keep his way, and he will exalt you to take possession of the earth. When the wicked ones are cut off, you will see it.”—Psalm 37:34. [Why Did God Wage War Against the Canaanites? w 2010]
Tough readings? Who of us enJOY needles, painful dental work or going to the dentist generally speaking?! (NOT ME!)…or the thought of gangrene or amputation??…or destruction/death of any people, fellow-fragile-life??…but truly LOVING/HONEST/COURAGEOUS Docs…don’t keep uncomfortable/difficult diagnoses or treatments from patients!!…IF they are “legit” docs!!..they tell the hard TRUTH (put their own opinions/discomfort/feelings aside)…even when/IF patient is terminally ill and they do HOPEFULLY talk openly about pain management…etc.
And You don’t have to be a brilliant/caring doctor to recognize the wisdom…or necessary life-lessons taught by negative outcomes…results/patterns popping up in history or modern-story…unhealthy pathways/behaviors…leading to much suffering, misery, and death!:(
Anyway Reader🙂 please keep choosing real Life, real Love…and “real” Freedom…aka LIVING TRUTH…and not cowardly/arrogantly running away from it! Not all aspects of Truth are pleasant, eh? (or easily digestible;)
Muppets can be fun (distraction?) pain management, huh? Laughter is good medicine…helps with the spiritual mind-food!:) Popcorn…fun snack.