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Old 10-04-2011, 09:56 PM
 
Location: Toronto, ON
2,333 posts, read 2,443,929 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thomas R. View Post
Yes yes and Ubar didn't exist either.

NOVA Online/Lost City of Arabia/Zarins Interview

I'm not saying for certain Sodom and Gomorrah existed but "that sounds stupid to me" is not proof of anything. Lots of things that really happened sound stupid. Maybe there is some basis to the story and maybe some cities like S&G were destroyed somehow. Or maybe it's all allegory. I don't know for certain and neither do you.

To some of us Sodom and Gomorah is a post Noah rapture (revelations); woops, did Noah happen after Abraham? Noah is post Abraham ambition for the tower of Babel. Again I misfit the history of violence.


Why not? The giant building was built in perfect testimony to the Clock, the perfect clock. SIn was either way, and you're screwed if you worry about it.

Last edited by tgnostic; 10-04-2011 at 10:08 PM.. Reason: punctuation and spelling
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Old 10-04-2011, 10:30 PM
 
Location: Toronto, ON
2,333 posts, read 2,443,929 times
Reputation: 258
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vinylly View Post
For not doing to us what he did to Sodom and Gomorrah?

http://www.usccb.org/bible/genesis/genesis19.htm
God makes the excuse of a chosen people for a chosen truth of His message being for mankind. But God is such a choice above God; just like the Star of Arthur C. Clarke; God had a choice for the values of His own freedom which is just as well a stupid fatality. Is anyone in a position to Judge.
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Old 10-04-2011, 10:46 PM
 
Location: Victoria, BC.
30,038 posts, read 30,695,423 times
Reputation: 12214
Quote:
Originally Posted by Thomas R. View Post
Yes yes and Ubar didn't exist either.

NOVA Online/Lost City of Arabia/Zarins Interview

I'm not saying for certain Sodom and Gomorrah existed but "that sounds stupid to me" is not proof of anything. Lots of things that really happened sound stupid. Maybe there is some basis to the story and maybe some cities like S&G were destroyed somehow. Or maybe it's all allegory. I don't know for certain and neither do you.
Well I'm pretty darned certain that nobody was ever transformed into salt.
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Old 10-05-2011, 09:08 AM
 
Location: Ontario, Canada
2,705 posts, read 2,507,792 times
Reputation: 833
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vinylly View Post
For not doing to us what he did to Sodom and Gomorrah?

http://www.usccb.org/bible/genesis/genesis19.htm
God does not answer to anyone.
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Old 10-05-2011, 09:09 AM
 
Location: Ontario, Canada
2,705 posts, read 2,507,792 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tgnostic View Post
God makes the excuse of a chosen people for a chosen truth of His message being for mankind. But God is such a choice above God; just like the Star of Arthur C. Clarke; God had a choice for the values of His own freedom which is just as well a stupid fatality. Is anyone in a position to Judge.
No one is in a position to judge God. Remember what He said to Job?
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Old 10-05-2011, 06:00 PM
 
3,488 posts, read 3,152,200 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Theophane View Post
No one is in a position to judge God. Remember what He said to Job?
The worst reply in history?

In the end - it was Job's friends (and their blind defense of God from curious mortals with questions) who were chastised. Job was shown and declared to be in the right.

" After Yahweh had spoken these words to Job, Yahweh said to Eliphaz the Tamanite, 'My anger burns against you and your two friends; for you have not spoken truth of me, as did Job, my servant. So, now, take yourselves seven bullocks and seven rams, and go to Job, my servant, and make a burnt offering for yourselves, and Job, my servant, will pray for you, for I will accept him, so that I may not do anything rash to you; for you have not told truth of me, as did Job, my servant.'" (Job 42:7-9; AB, Pope)

Job had every right to question God, and did so.
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Old 10-06-2011, 10:43 AM
Status: "Even better than okay" (set 14 days ago)
 
Location: Coastal New Jersey
51,360 posts, read 50,609,566 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sanspeur View Post
Well I'm pretty darned certain that nobody was ever transformed into salt.
Look at my post a few above with the pics of the pillars of salt. I saw a pretty good documentary on Sodom and Gomorrah and the biblical story last year.

One of the scholars interviewed said it isn't hard to look at those salt formations and imagine one of them being a person, and when you've go the ruins of ancient cities nearby, coming up with a story of "guess what happened to the people who used to live THERE?" wasn't hard, especially in the long winter nights before electric light and television.

Whether you believe the story to be literal or not (I do not, personally), it's still a story of faith, obedience, and persistence. If you don't believe in God, then you can just take it as an imaginative tale.

And a favorite saying that I picked up in a novel years ago--in the same vein as "Is the Pope Catholic?--is "Would a deer lick Lot's wife?"
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Old 10-06-2011, 11:32 AM
 
3,488 posts, read 3,152,200 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mightyqueen801 View Post
....One of the scholars interviewed said it isn't hard to look at those salt formations and imagine one of them being a person, and when you've go the ruins of ancient cities nearby, coming up with a story of "guess what happened to the people who used to live THERE?" wasn't hard, especially in the long winter nights before electric light and television.

Whether you believe the story to be literal or not (I do not, personally), it's still a story of faith, obedience, and persistence. If you don't believe in God, then you can just take it as an imaginative tale.

And a favorite saying that I picked up in a novel years ago--in the same vein as "Is the Pope Catholic?--is "Would a deer lick Lot's wife?"
That's a funny book title!

It's a great example of what can be called an etiological tale, like Rudyard Kipling's Just So Stories.
Why are there pillars of salt there?
Why does a snake have no limbs?
Why do we have to work for a living?
Why does bearing children involve pain?

There's several different kinds of etiological explanations throughout mankind's literature, including the Bible:

Some explain physical aspects of the world (the snake, childbirth, etc).
Some explain names or titles (the use of the word adam for humanity, Yahweh's explanation of his name in Exodus, why the sons of Lot's daughters are called what they are, etc).
Some explain political or social relationships (again - Lot's daughters and their son's names, the Amalekites, the curse on Canaan, etc).
Some explain religious or cultic practices (passover, the sabbath, dietary restrictions).
Some explain geographical features and names (Lot's wife and the pillar of salt, the various sites where the patriarchs encountered God or Yahweh, etc).

Etiological stories are one of the most fascinating parts of the Bible, in my opinion.
Robert Alter, in his translation and commentary on the Torah, comments on the Pillar of Salt story:
As has often been observed, this tale looks doubly archaic, incorporating both an etiological story about a gynemorphic rock formation in the Dead Sea region and an old mythic motif (as in the story of Orpheus and Euridyce) of a taboo against looking back in fleeing from a place of doom...
(TFBOM, Alter; p. 95)
I would add that the folkloric beliefs on the danger of mortals seeing God might also be a possibility here. Speiser (Genesis, AB, p. 143) agrees and notes "Had the sun risen an instant sooner, Lot might have shared the fate of his wife; for God's mysterious workings must not be looked at by man." He extends the danger of seeing God, however, to even his actions.

I'm not sure I would follow the traditional explanation: that Lot's wife is punished simply for disobeying the orders given to the fleeing family: there's probably much more behind the story than first meets the eye, and I've noted some aspects of it above. It must be remembered that we are trying to understand a very old document that was written for a specific people at a specific time, and that we don't share the same cultural background and experiences - so we must sometimes delve much deeper than is traditionally done. Aspects of a story that would have immediately jumped to the mind of an ancient listener must be teased out by modern interpreters - and we are not always succesful at the task. But it sure is fun trying!!
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Old 10-06-2011, 12:36 PM
 
Location: Metromess
11,798 posts, read 21,363,010 times
Reputation: 5054
Everyone is in a position to judge both Bible stories and the alleged existence of a god. The Sodom and Gomorrah and Job tales are both virtually impossible to take literally. Even if taken figuratively, the lessons appear to be only that the OT God is likely to inflict draconian pusihments and to be exceedingly cruel even to those who profess belief in order to test the limits of their faith. Thanks but no thanks.
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Old 10-06-2011, 02:16 PM
Status: "Even better than okay" (set 14 days ago)
 
Location: Coastal New Jersey
51,360 posts, read 50,609,566 times
Reputation: 60285
Quote:
Originally Posted by catman View Post
Everyone is in a position to judge both Bible stories and the alleged existence of a god. The Sodom and Gomorrah and Job tales are both virtually impossible to take literally. Even if taken figuratively, the lessons appear to be only that the OT God is likely to inflict draconian pusihments and to be exceedingly cruel even to those who profess belief in order to test the limits of their faith. Thanks but no thanks.
My priest recently commented/addressed in his sermon that day's reading from Job. First he made it clear that the book of Job is not to be taken literally, and his take is that the story is meant to demonstrate that bad things happen to good people.

I don't really think it has a heck of a lot to do with God, although God's supposedly merrily going along with tormenting poor Job. Maybe the author had some bad luck and was p.o.'d at God and his creative writing was his passive-aggressive way to express that. My priest didn't say that part. I just made it up.
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