MOST FIERCEST BOOKS IN THE BIBLE
Daniel is by far the most difficult and bizarre Book of the Bible to translate. The first chapter is in Hebrew. The second through the seventh are in Aramaic
One of the most famous of Daniel’s stories recounts how the king demands that Daniel’s three friends bow down and worship a 90 foot high gold idol. The three men refuse, explaining that this would infuriate their God, and they are afraid of him, not of Nebuchadnezzar. The king immediately has them thrown into a fiery furnace, heated seven times hotter than any other furnace in human history to that point. But when the king looks in, he does not see them burning. He sees four men walking around unharmed, “and the form of the fourth is like the Son of God.” This is considered by some to be one of the few appearances Jesus makes in the Old Testament.
Daniel becomes the envy of all the other wisemen, who trick the king, Darius I, father of Xerxes who fought the Spartans at Thermopylae, into throwing Daniel into a den of lions, for the crime of praying to another God besides those of Babylon. God shuts the mouths of the lions that they are not hungry, and Daniel is saved.
The Book becomes very strange and scarier: Belshazzar, the last king of Babylon, offends God by throwing a lavish party for thousands, during which everyone drinks from the holy cups stolen from Solomon’s Temple, in Jerusalem. An eerie, dismembered hand appears out of nowhere and writes Aramaic words on the wall in full view of everyone. No one can read them but Daniel, who translates ominously, “God has numbered the days of thy kingdom and finished it. Thou art weighed in the balances and found wanting. Thy kingdom is divided and given to the Medes and the Persians.” Belshazzar is murdered in his sleep that night, and Darius the Mede takes over Babylon.
But the scariest part by far begins with Chapter 7: Daniel dreams of four beasts, a lion, a bear, a leopard, and something horrible with iron teeth. These are four kingdoms that will rise in the future. Thousands of theologians and historians have attempted to decipher these, but what we can be sure of is that they appear to concern the End Times. God judges everyone who ever lived, and everyone goes to Heaven or Hell. The beasts are destroyed in fire, and the book ends with a cryptic warning that the end of the world is coming, when something evil shall make the whole world desolate for 1,290 days, before God destroys that evil.
Written by Moses himself, according to tradition, this book consists largely of God’s Law to the Israelites as they are about to enter the Promised Land. Before that, Moses has led the Israelites for 40 years through the Sinai, Saudi and Jordanian deserts, which is God’s punishment for their wickedness. Upon entering the inhabited lands to the south and west of Canaan
Moses leads his people into battle against no less than 60 cities of one kingdom, Bashan, led by Og. This is after Moses and company defeat Sihon of Heshbon. God evidently overrides free will, itself, in this passage, as well as others throughout the Bible: “But Sihon king of Heshbon refused to let us pass through. For the LORD your God had made his spirit stubborn and his heart obstinate in order to give him into your hands, as he has now done.”
Then the Israelites reach Mount Sinai, and God gives Moses the Ten Commandments, which Moses relays to the people. The people have degenerated into sin by building and worshiping a golden calf. Moses is none too pleased. He holds up the Tablets, and dashes them to pieces at the foot of the mountain, then orders those who desire to do the will of the Lord to come to him.
All those of the tribe of Levi do so, and he orders them to take up swords and go through the whole body of people murdering about three thousand. Then Moses burns and grinds the calf into dust, scatters it on a body of water, and forces the Israelites to drink it. He does this to punish and protect them, since the Lord is intent on destroying every single one of them for their impudent offences. Moses prays to him for mercy, which he gives out of respect for Moses and love for his people. God wants discipline above all, and that is the most common defense for his vehemently destructive acts throughout the Bible.
is the only Book of the Bible the events of which have transpired, which depicts God actually destroying every single living organism on the entire planet: plants, animals, humans, everything, except for Noah and his family.
The Bible states quite frankly that God is sorry he has made man. “And it repented the Lord that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart.” He loves Noah, who is blameless, and so he spares him and his family, and 7 pairs of every clean animal and bird, 1 pair of every unclean animal, and every creeping thing. Noah is 600 years old when the Great Flood begins.
The common idea that they were all in the ark for 40 days and 40 nights is not true. That’s just how long it rains. He actually stays in the ark with his family and all the animals for 1 year, 1 month and 27 days. That’s how long the water lasted above every thing. Absolutely every single living thing on the planet is drowned, except for the fishes
Even God Himself feels bad at having done this, and when it is all over, he swears to Noah and his descendants that he will never again wipe out all life on Earth for man’s sake, “for man’s heart is evil from his youth,” which is to say, we can’t help it. His Covenant with Noah is the rainbow. God will never again curse the ground and destroy every living thing. With water.
This is also the Book most violently opposed to homosexuality, when God utterly incinerates Sodom and Gomorrah by fire and brimstone out of Heaven. The detonation is so severe that Lot’s wife turns to see and is seared to death into a pillar of salt. Some scholars have suggested that God’s fire and brimstone created a conflagration of the nature and intensity of a hydrogen bomb explosion, but without the radiation.
was Moses’s chief captain, and when Moses dies at the end of Deuteronomy, the Israelites have just entered Canaan, the Promised Land. He appoints Joshua as the new leader, and Joshua famously declares, “As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.”
The Lord orders the Israelites to wipe out all those before them, and Joshua tells his men, “Whoever rebels against your word and does not obey your words, whatever you may command them, will be put to death.”
What happens next is nearly non-stop violence: 24 chapters of pitched battles, sieges and the policy of total war. Every single man, woman, child and animal that the Israelites encounter is slaughtered without hesitation, in every city, town, village and hut.
There are only a very few exceptions, the first being Rahab the prostitute and her family. Rahab has heard who the Lord is, and fears him, so she helps the Israelite spies and tells them about Jericho’s defenses.
With the Ark before them, the Israelites raze Jericho to the ground, charge in and annihilate every single living thing, even the cattle, except Rahab and her family, who convert to Judaism.
Joshua leads the Israelites to yet another victory, and then God Himself sends a mighty storm of hailstones onto the fleeing Amorites and obliterates them. The five kings hide in a cave in terror, but Joshua’s men find them, and ridicule them. Joshua then has them impaled on stakes for public scorn, and then they are discarded back in their cave. In all, 31 kingdoms are deposed and slaughtered. The last is Hazor: after the Israelites roust them,
Joshua is on direct orders from God to have them pursued so furiously as to cut their horses’ hindlegs so they can no longer run away, and burn their chariots. The inhabitants of the city of Hazor are murdered to the last man, woman, child, and animal, and the city is burned to the ground.