Can the Bible be God's Word?
You are reading Can the Bible be God's Word? by Steve McRoberts
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Chapter 2: Exodus

Ex:1:8: Now there arose up a new king over Egypt, which knew not Joseph.
Ex:1:9: And he said unto his people, Behold, the people of the children of Israel are more and mightier than we:
Ex:1:15: And the king of Egypt spake to the Hebrew midwives, of which the name of the one was Shiphrah, and the name of the other Puah:
Ex:1:16: And he said, When ye do the office of a midwife to the Hebrew women, and see them upon the stools; if it be a son, then ye shall kill him: but if it be a daughter, then she shall live.

If the Israelites were more numerous than the Egyptians, it seems likely that there would have been far more than just two Hebrew midwives.

The Pharaoh’s plan of population control via infanticide was certainly flawed. Throughout history this abominable practice has always been perpetrated against female infants, never male infants. A moment’s thought will reveal why this is. It only takes one male to impregnate a multitude of females, whereas a female can only be impregnated once a year. Even if Pharaoh had succeeded in killing off every male infant of the Israelites, any adult male could impregnate the surviving females (and given the Israelites’ penchant for incest, this was quite likely to occur). Only one male infant would have to slip through the cracks every 50 years or so to keep the population increasing. So, female infanticide (though reprehensible in practice) is a much more efficient method of population control than male infanticide. The Egyptians were no dummies, so it is highly unlikely that this story is true. It is more likely that the writer of Exodus needed some subterfuge to explain how an Egyptian by the name of Moses became their leader, but was really an Israelite.

Ex:1:22: And Pharaoh charged all his people, saying, Every son that is born ye shall cast into the river, and every daughter ye shall save alive.

Why would the Pharaoh tell his own people to kill their baby boys?

Ex:2:5: And the daughter of Pharaoh came down to wash herself at the river; and her maidens walked along by the river's side; and when she saw the ark among the flags, she sent her maid to fetch it.

Since (according to Exodus) this river would have been teeming with the bodies of putrefying Hebrew babies, it would probably be the last place on earth a princess would choose to bathe in.

Ex:2:10: And the child grew, and she brought him unto Pharaoh's daughter, and he became her son. And she called his name Moses: and she said, Because I drew him out of the water.

We are told that the daughter of Pharaoh named him Moses because in Hebrew it means 'drawn out'. But what would an Egyptian princess be doing with a knowledge of Hebrew etymology?

Mose was a common Egyptian name, which simply meant 'son'. This 'mose' was tacked onto the end of a name much as we today tack on 'son' in many surnames today such as Anderson, Robertson, etc. An example of this is the pharaoh Ramose (commonly called 'Ramses'), meaning son of the god Ra. Doubtless Moses also had an Egyptian deity as the first part of his name, though it was later dropped for obvious reasons.

Ex:2:11: And it came to pass in those days, when Moses was grown, that he went out unto his brethren, and looked on their burdens: and he spied an Egyptian smiting an Hebrew, one of his brethren.
Ex:2:12: And he looked this way and that way, and when he saw that there was no man, he slew the Egyptian, and hid him in the sand.

Smiting a slave is certainly an evil thing to do. But nowhere does the Bible condemn slavery, and in fact it instructs slaves to endure whatever treatment their "masters" mete out to them (1 Tim. 6:1; 1 Peter 2:18,19). So, if we say that this man got what he deserved for smiting his slave, then we are contradicting the teaching of the Bible. Although I disagree with the Bible and think that it is wrong for one man to smite another (slave or not), I don’t think that two wrongs make a right. Moses was wrong to kill this man, and he proved himself a murderer. This action was hardly one that would lead us to describe him as the "meekest of men"! (Num. 12:3)

Ex:2:15: Now when Pharaoh heard this thing, he sought to slay Moses. But Moses fled from the face of Pharaoh, and dwelt in the land of Midian: and he sat down by a well.

Having read this much of Moses’ story for ourselves, let us now compare the summary of it given in a much later book of the Bible:

Heb:11:24: By faith Moses, when he was come to years, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh's daughter;
Heb:11:25: Choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season;
Heb:11:26: Esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt: for he had respect unto the recompence of the reward.
Heb:11:27: By faith he forsook Egypt, not fearing the wrath of the king: for he endured, as seeing him who is invisible.

First of all, there is nothing in Exodus to indicate that Moses repudiated his Egyptian upbringing or that he went to work as a brick-maker side by side with his blood relatives. The way the account in Exodus is written, one is led to believe that Moses was brought up as an Egyptian and was not a slave at the time he committed murder.

The book of Hebrews also errs in stating that Moses chose to suffer with the Israelites because of "esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt". Moses had never heard of any "Christ".

Finally, the writer of Hebrews claims that Moses fled Egypt due to his faith in God rather than his fear of the king. In contrast to this statement, Exodus plainly tells us that Pharaoh sought to kill Moses and "Moses fled from the face of Pharaoh". So Moses wasn’t so much fleeing Egypt as he was fleeing a wrathful Pharaoh. If Moses had such great faith in God (as the book of Hebrews claims), then why would he have fled? Wouldn’t he have had faith that God would protect him? Since God later told him to go back and face Pharaoh, it cannot be argued that Moses was faithfully acting on God’s wishes by fleeing Pharaoh.

Ex:2:18: And when they came to Reuel their father, he said, How is it that ye are come so soon to day?
Ex:2:19: And they said, An Egyptian delivered us out of the hand of the shepherds, and also drew water enough for us, and watered the flock.
Ex:2:20: And he said unto his daughters, And where is he? why is it that ye have left the man? call him, that he may eat bread.
Ex:2:21: And Moses was content to dwell with the man: and he gave Moses Zipporah his daughter.

Here, Moses is plainly called an Egyptian. If he had formerly cast his lot in with the Hebrew slaves, it’s doubtful that his appearance would’ve given the impression that he was an Egyptian.

Reuel became Moses’ father-in-law. However, although we never read of Moses taking another wife, we are elsewhere told that his father-in-law is someone else:

Ex:3:1: Now Moses kept the flock of Jethro his father in law, the priest of Midian: and he led the flock to the backside of the desert, and came to the mountain of God, even to Horeb.

Num:10:29: And Moses said unto Hobab, the son of Raguel the Midianite, Moses' father in law, We are journeying unto the place of which the LORD said, I will give it you: come thou with us, and we will do thee good: for the LORD hath spoken good concerning Israel.

So, was Moses’ father-in-law Reuel, Jethro, Hobab, or Raguel?

Ex:4:6: And the LORD said furthermore unto him, Put now thine hand into thy bosom. And he put his hand into his bosom: and when he took it out, behold, his hand was leprous as snow.
Ex:4:7: And he said, Put thine hand into thy bosom again. And he put his hand into his bosom again; and plucked it out of his bosom, and, behold, it was turned again as his other flesh.

If it is this easy for God to instantly cure leprosy, he must not care very much about lepers whom he watches suffer.

Ex:4:8: And it shall come to pass, if they will not believe thee, neither hearken to the voice of the first sign, that they will believe the voice of the latter sign.
Ex:4:9: And it shall come to pass, if they will not believe also these two signs, neither hearken unto thy voice, that thou shalt take of the water of the river, and pour it upon the dry land: and the water which thou takest out of the river shall become blood upon the dry land.

The God who "knows all" first stated emphatically that if they did not believe the first sign, they would believe the second sign. But then he contradicted himself by saying that maybe they wouldn't believe the second sign, and so he provided a third sign to cover this contingency!

Ex:4:24: And it came to pass by the way in the inn, that the LORD met him, and sought to kill him.
Ex:4:25: Then Zipporah took a sharp stone, and cut off the foreskin of her son, and cast it at his feet, and said, Surely a bloody husband art thou to me.
Ex:4:26: So he let him go: then she said, A bloody husband thou art, because of the circumcision.

After commissioning Moses to appear before Pharaoh with the demand of releasing the Israelites, God attempted to kill Moses on his way to Egypt! Why? Why would God have wasted so much breath outlining in redundant detail exactly what Moses was to do, and then, as Moses started out on his assignment, attempt to kill him?

If God attempted to kill Moses, why wouldn’t God have succeeded? Is there something more powerful than God which can thwart his intentions?

In this case, Moses’ wife performed a crude circumcision on their son, and threw the foreskin at Moses’ feet, calling him a "bloody husband". For some reason, this bizarre, barbaric action appeased the deity and he "let go" of Moses!

If the greatest force in the universe grabbed hold of you and "sought to kill" you, do you think you’d stand a chance? Don’t you think death would be as instantaneous as the leprosy Moses contracted at God’s command? But here we see the creator of the universe physically struggling with a mere mortal man, and failing to accomplish his objective! This reminds me of the time God wrestled with Jacob – and lost! According to the Bible, God is a weakling!

Most people would be hard pressed to come up with a more inane story than this one about how God’s attempt to kill his own messenger was foiled by a woman cutting off a piece of her son’s penis and flinging it at the feet of the wrestlers.

Ex:5:22: And Moses returned unto the LORD, and said, Lord, wherefore hast thou so evil entreated this people? why is it that thou hast sent me?
Ex:5:23: For since I came to Pharaoh to speak in thy name, he hath done evil to this people; neither hast thou delivered thy people at all.

Ex:6:1: Then the LORD said unto Moses, Now shalt thou see what I will do to Pharaoh: for with a strong hand shall he let them go, and with a strong hand shall he drive them out of his land.

Even Moses was able to see that God’s actions made no sense, and were counterproductive. But God explained the reason why he had not delivered his people: he wanted to show off his great power! God’s attitude might be summed up in these words: "Suffer some more, my people, because showing off my greatness is more important to me than relieving your misery." What vanity!

Ex:6:2: And God spake unto Moses, and said unto him, I am the LORD:
Ex:6:3: And I appeared unto Abraham, unto Isaac, and unto Jacob, by the name of God Almighty, but by my name JEHOVAH was I not known to them.

It is a well-known fact that the word here translated as "JEHOVAH" appears many times before this in the Bible. In the King James Version, every time you see the word "LORD" in all capitals, it is the same word as here translated "JEHOVAH". This means that the Bible represents Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob as having known the name Jehovah (in contradiction to the verse above which claims they did not). But since we are relying on the King James Version as translated, I offer the following verse in evidence:

Gen:22:14: And Abraham called the name of that place Jehovah-jireh: as it is said to this day, In the mount of the LORD it shall be seen.

Why would Abraham call the place Jehovah-jireh unless he knew that Jehovah was God’s name?

The standard explanation of this is to say that, ‘yes, they knew the name Jehovah, but they didn’t know how powerful Jehovah was, so they didn’t really know him.’ But Exodus 6:3 doesn’t say anything of the sort, it says "by my name JEHOVAH was I not known to them." (Emphasis added.)

Ex:6:20: And Amram took him Jochebed his father's sister to wife; and she bare him Aaron and Moses: and the years of the life of Amram were an hundred and thirty and seven years.

Here we learn that Moses and Aaron were the product of inbreeding; their father Amram had sex with his own aunt (his father’s sister)! Such a union is condemned under the Mosaic Law:

Lev:20:19: And thou shalt not uncover the nakedness of thy mother's sister, nor of thy father's sister: for he uncovereth his near kin: they shall bear their iniquity.

Ex:7:3: And I will harden Pharaoh's heart, and multiply my signs and my wonders in the land of Egypt.
Ex:7:4: But Pharaoh shall not hearken unto you, that I may lay my hand upon Egypt, and bring forth mine armies, and my people the children of Israel, out of the land of Egypt by great judgments.
Ex:7:5: And the Egyptians shall know that I am the LORD, when I stretch forth mine hand upon Egypt, and bring out the children of Israel from among them.

God stated that he would purposely "harden Pharaoh’s heart" so that Pharaoh would not listen to Moses and Aaron. Note that God was pulling all the strings here. It was just a puppet show put on for his own amusement. He ordered Moses and Aaron to deliver a message, and at the same time he made the recipient of the message unresponsive. Why did he do this? "That I may lay my hand upon Egypt". So the God of justice made Pharaoh disobey him in order to justify punishing the Egyptians (who had nothing to do with Pharaoh’s actions).

In contradiction to this, the Bible elsewhere tells us that God does not tempt anyone to sin, but rather sin comes from the individual’s own will:

Jms:1:13: Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man:
Jms:1:14: But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.

Ex:7:20: And Moses and Aaron did so, as the LORD commanded; and he lifted up the rod, and smote the waters that were in the river, in the sight of Pharaoh, and in the sight of his servants; and all the waters that were in the river were turned to blood.
Ex:7:21: And the fish that was in the river died; and the river stank, and the Egyptians could not drink of the water of the river; and there was blood throughout all the land of Egypt.
Ex:7:22: And the magicians of Egypt did so with their enchantments: and Pharaoh's heart was hardened, neither did he hearken unto them; as the LORD had said.

So the first victims of God’s insane vanity were (as usual) non-human animals.

But if Moses and Aaron had turned all of the water into blood, how could the Egyptian magicians do the same thing? There would have been no water for them to turn to blood; it had already all turned to blood!

Ex:8:6: And Aaron stretched out his hand over the waters of Egypt; and the frogs came up, and covered the land of Egypt.
Ex:8:7: And the magicians did so with their enchantments, and brought up frogs upon the land of Egypt.

Since the frogs that Aaron magically produced "covered the land of Egypt", how could they determine that the Egyptian magicians did the same thing? How did they tell Aaron’s frogs from the magician’s frogs?

Why did the magicians act in such a way as to harm their own homeland by imitating Aaron’s damaging magic? Why didn’t they just make Aaron and his rod disappear -- permanently?

Ex:9:12: And the LORD hardened the heart of Pharaoh, and he hearkened not unto them; as the LORD had spoken unto Moses.

Ex:9:14: For I will at this time send all my plagues upon thine heart, and upon thy servants, and upon thy people; that thou mayest know that there is none like me in all the earth.
Ex:9:15: For now I will stretch out my hand, that I may smite thee and thy people with pestilence; and thou shalt be cut off from the earth.
Ex:9:16: And in very deed for this cause have I raised thee up, for to shew in thee my power; and that my name may be declared throughout all the earth.

If there was any doubt about why God had killed all the fish, frogs, flies, and cattle, it is here stated plainly. God even "raised Pharaoh up" for the purpose of showing off his power. Instead of performing all these miracles which took so many innocent lives, God could’ve simply "softened Pharaoh’s heart" to let the Israelites peacefully leave Egypt.

Ex:9:19: Send therefore now, and gather thy cattle, and all that thou hast in the field; for upon every man and beast which shall be found in the field, and shall not be brought home, the hail shall come down upon them, and they shall die.
Ex:9:20: He that feared the word of the LORD among the servants of Pharaoh made his servants and his cattle flee into the houses:
Ex:9:21: And he that regarded not the word of the LORD left his servants and his cattle in the field.

But how could these Egyptians have cattle when all of the Egyptians’ cattle had been previously killed by God:

Ex:9:3: Behold, the hand of the LORD is upon thy cattle which is in the field, upon the horses, upon the asses, upon the camels, upon the oxen, and upon the sheep: there shall be a very grievous murrain.

Ex:9:6: And the LORD did that thing on the morrow, and all the cattle of Egypt died: but of the cattle of the children of Israel died not one.

Ex:10:1: And the LORD said unto Moses, Go in unto Pharaoh: for I have hardened his heart, and the heart of his servants, that I might shew these my signs before him:
Ex:10:2: And that thou mayest tell in the ears of thy son, and of thy son's son, what things I have wrought in Egypt, and my signs which I have done among them; that ye may know how that I am the LORD.

Once again we are told that the reason for all of this calamity was not some character flaw of the Pharaoh: it stemmed from God’s own vanity!

Ex:10:20: But the LORD hardened Pharaoh's heart, so that he would not let the children of Israel go.

There can be no doubt, after these constant repetitions, that God deliberately visited all this death and destruction on the innocent when it all could’ve been avoided if only God were not so vain (or if he could’ve had enough imagination to conceive of a way to show-off without resorting to mass murder and destruction).

Ex:10:21: And the LORD said unto Moses, Stretch out thine hand toward heaven, that there may be darkness over the land of Egypt, even darkness which may be felt.

Darkness is the absence of light. It cannot be "felt".

Ex:10:27: But the LORD hardened Pharaoh's heart, and he would not let them go.

Ex:11:1: And the LORD said unto Moses, Yet will I bring one plague more upon Pharaoh, and upon Egypt; afterwards he will let you go hence: when he shall let you go, he shall surely thrust you out hence altogether.

Ex:11:4: And Moses said, Thus saith the LORD, About midnight will I go out into the midst of Egypt:
Ex:11:5: And all the firstborn in the land of Egypt shall die, from the firstborn of Pharaoh that sitteth upon his throne, even unto the firstborn of the maidservant that is behind the mill; and all the firstborn of beasts.

Ex:11:9: And the LORD said unto Moses, Pharaoh shall not hearken unto you; that my wonders may be multiplied in the land of Egypt.
Ex:11:10: And Moses and Aaron did all these wonders before Pharaoh: and the LORD hardened Pharaoh's heart, so that he would not let the children of Israel go out of his land.

God was making a big show of asking Pharaoh to let the Israelites go, but at the same time, he was making Pharaoh disobey his request. Pharaoh had no choice in the matter; God had hardened his heart. So who is guilty for the deaths of all the firstborn of man and beast? Who is a mass murderer? According to Exodus, the answer to these questions is unequivocal: the God of the Bible!

Ex:12:5: Your lamb shall be without blemish, a male of the first year: ye shall take it out from the sheep, or from the goats:
Ex:12:6: And ye shall keep it up until the fourteenth day of the same month: and the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill it in the evening.
Ex:12:7: And they shall take of the blood, and strike it on the two side posts and on the upper door post of the houses, wherein they shall eat it.

Ex:12:12: For I will pass through the land of Egypt this night, and will smite all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both man and beast; and against all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgment: I am the LORD.
Ex:12:13: And the blood shall be to you for a token upon the houses where ye are: and when I see the blood, I will pass over you, and the plague shall not be upon you to destroy you, when I smite the land of Egypt.

Not content with murdering all of the firstborn Egyptians and their animals, God had the Israelites slaughter baby animals as well. Why? So that their blood could be smeared on their door posts. Why? So that God would know not to kill the firstborn inhabitants of the house! God is evidently clever enough to look at a person and know if they were the firstborn of their parents, but he can’t tell an Egyptian from an Israelite!

Ex:12:29: And it came to pass, that at midnight the LORD smote all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, from the firstborn of Pharaoh that sat on his throne unto the firstborn of the captive that was in the dungeon; and all the firstborn of cattle.
Ex:12:30: And Pharaoh rose up in the night, he, and all his servants, and all the Egyptians; and there was a great cry in Egypt; for there was not a house where there was not one dead.

So, in order to show off his power, God committed mass murder.  He killed thousands of innocent people. If God hadn’t purposely "hardened Pharaoh's heart" on numerous occasions, the Israelites would’ve left Egypt long before this, without any bloodshed. What is your personal opinion of someone who deliberately manipulates events in order to have an excuse to commit mass murder, and then brags about it? Is this someone you would want as a friend? Is it someone you would heap praises upon, or fall down on your knees before and worship?

Since God had already killed "all" of the Egyptians’ cattle back in chapter 9 (verse 6), it is difficult to imagine how God was able to kill the firstborn Egyptian cattle again here.

Ex:13:11: And it shall be when the LORD shall bring thee into the land of the Canaanites, as he sware unto thee and to thy fathers, and shall give it thee,
Ex:13:12: That thou shalt set apart unto the LORD all that openeth the matrix, and every firstling that cometh of a beast which thou hast; the males shall be the LORD's.
Ex:13:13: And every firstling of an ass thou shalt redeem with a lamb; and if thou wilt not redeem it, then thou shalt break his neck: and all the firstborn of man among thy children shalt thou redeem.
Ex:13:14: And it shall be when thy son asketh thee in time to come, saying, What is this? that thou shalt say unto him, By strength of hand the LORD brought us out from Egypt, from the house of bondage:
Ex:13:15: And it came to pass, when Pharaoh would hardly let us go, that the LORD slew all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both the firstborn of man, and the firstborn of beast: therefore I sacrifice to the LORD all that openeth the matrix, being males; but all the firstborn of my children I redeem.

God was evidently so proud of murdering the firstborn that he decided to commemorate the event forever with more killing! He instructed his people to automatically kill all the firstborn male offspring of their cattle, and to kill another animal whenever a woman gave birth to her first son. Do the words "cruel", "barbaric", and "wasteful" come to mind?

Ex:14:8: And the LORD hardened the heart of Pharaoh king of Egypt, and he pursued after the children of Israel: and the children of Israel went out with an high hand.
Ex:14:9: But the Egyptians pursued after them, all the horses and chariots of Pharaoh, and his horsemen, and his army, and overtook them encamping by the sea, beside Pi-hahiroth, before Baal-zephon.

God still hadn’t grown tired of this game! Pharaoh had let the Israelites go, and they were on their way to the "promised land", but God decided to make Pharaoh pursue them so that he could show off some more! This demonstrates a level of conceit that is almost inconceivable!

Since all the Egyptian’s horses had been previously killed by God (Ex. 9:3,6), how could it be that Pharaoh and his men pursued the Israelites on horses and horse-pulled chariots?

Ex:14:17: And I, behold, I will harden the hearts of the Egyptians, and they shall follow them: and I will get me honour upon Pharaoh, and upon all his host, upon his chariots, and upon his horsemen.
Ex:14:18: And the Egyptians shall know that I am the LORD, when I have gotten me honour upon Pharaoh, upon his chariots, and upon his horsemen.

It seems that even the dumb loyalty of Pharaoh’s soldiers was not enough to make them continue in their foolish pursuit of the Israelites. But, lest their freewill interfere with God’s grand show, God the puppet-master took control and hardened all of their hearts!

Ex:17:8: Then came Amalek, and fought with Israel in Rephidim.Ex:17:9: And Moses said unto Joshua, Choose us out men, and go out, fight with Amalek: to morrow I will stand on the top of the hill with the rod of God in mine hand.
Ex:17:10: So Joshua did as Moses had said to him, and fought with Amalek: and Moses, Aaron, and Hur went up to the top of the hill.
Ex:17:11: And it came to pass, when Moses held up his hand, that Israel prevailed: and when he let down his hand, Amalek prevailed.
Ex:17:12: But Moses' hands were heavy; and they took a stone, and put it under him, and he sat thereon; and Aaron and Hur stayed up his hands, the one on the one side, and the other on the other side; and his hands were steady until the going down of the sun.
Ex:17:13: And Joshua discomfited Amalek and his people with the edge of the sword.

After killing countless Egyptians and their animals, the Israelites started killing the native inhabitants of the land they were trespassing on. These people naturally fought to protect their homeland from this invading horde. All of this killing could’ve been avoided if God hadn’t decided to create seven years of famine some 400 years previously (Gen. 41:25-30). Then the Israelites would’ve stayed in Canaan and would’ve peacefully established themselves there as natives. Was God’s plan, which caused so much suffering and senseless deaths better than this simple idea? Why did God cause those 7 years of famine in the first place? Was it all just to show off? The Bible doesn’t provide any better answer than God’s egotism.

Ex:19:13: There shall not an hand touch it, but he shall surely be stoned, or shot through; whether it be beast or man, it shall not live: when the trumpet soundeth long, they shall come up to the mount.

Death to anyone who touches a mountain, whether it be a man or a beast. Seems a bit harsh to me.

Ex:19:21: And the LORD said unto Moses, Go down, charge the people, lest they break through unto the LORD to gaze, and many of them perish.
Ex:19:22: And let the priests also, which come near to the LORD, sanctify themselves, lest the LORD break forth upon them.
Ex:19:23: And Moses said unto the LORD, The people cannot come up to mount Sinai: for thou chargedst us, saying, Set bounds about the mount, and sanctify it.
Ex:19:24: And the LORD said unto him, Away, get thee down, and thou shalt come up, thou, and Aaron with thee: but let not the priests and the people break through to come up unto the LORD, lest he break forth upon them.

Is God forgetful and hard of hearing? Moses reminded him that he had already given strict orders to the people not to come near the mountain, so it was hardly necessary for Moses to go all the way back down and retell them what they already knew. But God acted as if he didn't hear Moses, and ordered him to go on the redundant mission.

When Moses returned, God issued more commandments. Some of these are very basic ethical laws that had been well known for countless ages before Moses was born. Some of them, though, are slightly odd:

Ex:20:4: Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth:

In order to follow God's law, you had better not use a camera, or take up drawing, painting, or sculpting; such activities would clearly violate this commandment! But we will soon see God himself ordering his people to break this very commandment.

Ex:20:5: Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me;

I vividly recall my youth as a member of the Roman Catholic religion. We were instructed to kneel before statues (images of people who were once on the earth and are now believed to be in heaven) and we would bow our heads before them and pray to them. This was in clear violation of this commandment, and yet we thought we were following the Bible!

Here God boasted of one of his major personality flaws: his jealousy. He went on to announce his perverted view of justice: to punish the children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren for their ancestor’s hatred of God! If any human judge believed that this was "justice", he would be immediately disbarred. This also contradicts what the Bible later reported God as saying:

Ezek:18:20: The soul that sinneth, it shall die. The son shall not bear the iniquity of the father, neither shall the father bear the iniquity of the son: the righteousness of the righteous shall be upon him, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon him.

So, if we believe that Exodus accurately recorded what God said to Moses, then we cannot believe that Ezekiel accurately recorded what God said, and vice versa. In no sense can we believe that both accounts are true since they flatly contradict each other.

Ex:20:13: Thou shalt not kill.

Already at this point in the Bible, God had ordered this law broken many times. We will see this many times more.

Ex:20:17: Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that is thy neighbour's.

Once again women are viewed as material possessions. One is not to covet one’s neighbor’s house, slaves, ox, ass, wife, or anything else that belongs to one’s neighbor! I guess that means that it would be all right for a woman to covet her neighbor’s husband, since a husband was not considered the property of the wife!

Ex:20:24: An altar of earth thou shalt make unto me, and shalt sacrifice thereon thy burnt offerings, and thy peace offerings, thy sheep, and thine oxen: in all places where I record my name I will come unto thee, and I will bless thee.

Why would a "God of love" want people to kill innocent animals in the name of "peace"?

Ex:20:26: Neither shalt thou go up by steps unto mine altar, that thy nakedness be not discovered thereon.

Evidently the Israelites weren’t in the habit of wearing underwear, so anyone standing at the bottom of the steps leading up to the altar would get quite a view of the genitals of the person ascending the steps. Luckily God had the foresight to command that his altars not be built with steps lest people see what he was evidently so ashamed of having created.

Ex:21:2: If thou buy an Hebrew servant, six years he shall serve: and in the seventh he shall go out free for nothing.Ex:21:3: If he came in by himself, he shall go out by himself: if he were married, then his wife shall go out with him.

Ex:21:4: If his master have given him a wife, and she have born him sons or daughters; the wife and her children shall be her master's, and he shall go out by himself.
Ex:21:5: And if the servant shall plainly say, I love my master, my wife, and my children; I will not go out free:
Ex:21:6: Then his master shall bring him unto the judges; he shall also bring him to the door, or unto the door post; and his master shall bore his ear through with an aul; and he shall serve him for ever.

It’s revealing that God was more concerned with someone seeing someone else’s genitals than he was with issues of freedom and slavery. Here he accepted the idea that one person could buy and own another person. Although Hebrew slaves got off after six years of service, men had to leave behind their wives and children (if acquired during the six years of slavery) as the property of their "master"! The only other option was to be mutilated and give up one’s freedom forever! Was that "Divine Justice" at work?

Ex:21:7: And if a man sell his daughter to be a maidservant, she shall not go out as the menservants do.

Here, God approved of men selling their daughters! If that weren’t bad enough, the following verses reveal what sort of "duties" the sold daughter would be expected to perform:

Ex:21:8: If she please not her master, who hath betrothed her to himself, then shall he let her be redeemed: to sell her unto a strange nation he shall have no power, seeing he hath dealt deceitfully with her.
Ex:21:9: And if he have betrothed her unto his son, he shall deal with her after the manner of daughters.
Ex:21:10: If he take him another wife; her food, her raiment, and her duty of marriage, shall he not diminish.
Ex:21:11: And if he do not these three unto her, then shall she go out free without money.

The sold daughter is described as "betrothed" to the owner or his son, and as having the "duty of marriage". We have already seen ample evidence in the Bible that when it refers to "marriage" it often simply means having sex. So there is little doubt about the type of arrangement we’re dealing with here. Men were selling their daughters as sex slaves to men. When the men grew tired of these women, they were to simply dismiss them without giving them anything for having ruined their lives. Can anyone honestly say that such a "Divine Law" reveals a God of love and justice? Under this law, women were treated as property, much as buying and selling a horse or a cow. Is this the kind of attitude we want to teach our children?

Ex:21:12: He that smiteth a man, so that he die, shall be surely put to death.
Ex:21:13: And if a man lie not in wait, but God deliver him into his hand; then I will appoint thee a place whither he shall flee.

People often quote the "eye for an eye… a life for a life" passage from the Bible, but they overlook the above passage. Here, God said that only a murder committed by someone who "lies in wait" for his victim should be punished by death. If you were to kill someone who walked right up to you in the street, then God would appoint a place for you to flee and be safe from retribution! In such a case, God takes credit for having "delivered" your victim into your hand!

Ex:21:20: And if a man smite his servant, or his maid, with a rod, and he die under his hand; he shall be surely punished.
Ex:21:21: Notwithstanding, if he continue a day or two, he shall not be punished: for he is his money.

God does not state what the "punishment" would be for killing one’s own slave. Since he didn’t hesitate to mention the death penalty for other crimes, its absence in this case is conspicuous. In any event, it is morally revealing that God thought it was just fine for someone to beat their slaves to the point of death as long as they didn’t die within a day or two of the beating. In such cases there was to be no punishment of the perpetrator since the slave was "his money". Today, when I read such perversions of justice, I am amazed that anyone has ever thought them to be a "perfect law" displaying "Divine Justice"!

Ex:22:16: And if a man entice a maid that is not betrothed, and lie with her, he shall surely endow her to be his wife.Ex:22:17: If her father utterly refuse to give her unto him, he shall pay money according to the dowry of virgins.

Here’s some more "Divine Justice": if a man were to rape an unmarried woman, she would be forced to marry him, unless her father refused, in which case the rapist would simply pay his victim’s father some money, and that would be the end of the matter. When you consider that God’s Law demanded the death penalty for letting an ox run loose, this lack of punishment for a rapist seems incongruous (until you take into account the Bible’s low opinion of women).

Ex:22:18: Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live.

Why? Was God afraid of witches? Did he think they had some supernatural powers that could compete with his? A valid philosophy of life does not need to resort to killing those with a differing viewpoint.

This verse has caused countless deaths of innocent people. It served as the justification for burning them to death!

Ex:22:28: Thou shalt not revile the gods, nor curse the ruler of thy people.

It doesn’t make any sense for God to say "thou shalt not revile the gods" unless God believed in the existence of other gods. This contradicts the following:

Isa:44:6: Thus saith the LORD the King of Israel, and his redeemer the LORD of hosts; I am the first, and I am the last; and beside me there is no God.

If there are no gods besides the God of the Bible, then it makes no sense to say "do not revile the gods". In any event, the Bible does indeed show God’s prophets reviling the gods with evident support in this activity from God:

1Kgs:18:27: And it came to pass at noon, that Elijah mocked them, and said, Cry aloud: for he is a god; either he is talking, or he is pursuing, or he is in a journey, or peradventure he sleepeth, and must be awaked.

After Elijah reviled the god Baal, the God of the Bible sent down fire from heaven at Elijah’s command to show his support of Elijah. This action is inconsistent with the God who said "thou shalt not revile the gods".

Ex:23:8: And thou shalt take no gift: for the gift blindeth the wise, and perverteth the words of the righteous.

One of the biggest holy days of Christianity ("Christmas") centers around gift-giving (and receiving). But this verse of God’s Law rules out all receiving of gifts.

Ex:23:10: And six years thou shalt sow thy land, and shalt gather in the fruits thereof:
Ex:23:11: But the seventh year thou shalt let it rest and lie still; that the poor of thy people may eat: and what they leave the beasts of the field shall eat. In like manner thou shalt deal with thy vineyard, and with thy oliveyard.

It seems God tried to take the poor into consideration in his perfect law: they got to eat once every seven years!

Ex:24:10: And they saw the God of Israel: and there was under his feet as it were a paved work of a sapphire stone, and as it were the body of heaven in his clearness.

This says that they saw God. But this is not possible according to the following:

Jn:1:18: No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him.

If this is true, then Exodus 24:10 is a lie. If Exodus 24:10 is true, then John 1:18 is a lie. They cannot both be true. If they are both the Bible, then the Bible cannot be true.

Ex:25:18: And thou shalt make two cherubims of gold, of beaten work shalt thou make them, in the two ends of the mercy seat.

Here, God commanded Moses to break the second commandment:

Ex:20:4: Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth:

Doesn’t it seem inconsistent to order someone never to do a certain action, and then order them to do that very action?

After going on and on and on about the minutest details of the tabernacle and its altar, God goes on to describe to what great and holy purpose these things will be put:

Ex:29:10: And thou shalt cause a bullock to be brought before the tabernacle of the congregation: and Aaron and his sons shall put their hands upon the head of the bullock.
Ex:29:11: And thou shalt kill the bullock before the LORD, by the door of the tabernacle of the congregation.
Ex:29:12: And thou shalt take of the blood of the bullock, and put it upon the horns of the altar with thy finger, and pour all the blood beside the bottom of the altar.
Ex:29:13: And thou shalt take all the fat that covereth the inwards, and the caul that is above the liver, and the two kidneys, and the fat that is upon them, and burn them upon the altar.
Ex:29:14: But the flesh of the bullock, and his skin, and his dung, shalt thou burn with fire without the camp: it is a sin offering.
Ex:29:15: Thou shalt also take one ram; and Aaron and his sons shall put their hands upon the head of the ram.
Ex:29:16: And thou shalt slay the ram, and thou shalt take his blood, and sprinkle it round about upon the altar.
Ex:29:17: And thou shalt cut the ram in pieces, and wash the inwards of him, and his legs, and put them unto his pieces, and unto his head.
Ex:29:18: And thou shalt burn the whole ram upon the altar: it is a burnt offering unto the LORD: it is a sweet savour, an offering made by fire unto the LORD.
Ex:29:19: And thou shalt take the other ram; and Aaron and his sons shall put their hands upon the head of the ram.
Ex:29:20: Then shalt thou kill the ram, and take of his blood, and put it upon the tip of the right ear of Aaron, and upon the tip of the right ear of his sons, and upon the thumb of their right hand, and upon the great toe of their right foot, and sprinkle the blood upon the altar round about.
Ex:29:21: And thou shalt take of the blood that is upon the altar, and of the anointing oil, and sprinkle it upon Aaron, and upon his garments, and upon his sons, and upon the garments of his sons with him: and he shall be hallowed, and his garments, and his sons, and his sons' garments with him.

Ex:29:35: And thus shalt thou do unto Aaron, and to his sons, according to all things which I have commanded thee: seven days shalt thou consecrate them.
Ex:29:36: And thou shalt offer every day a bullock for a sin offering for atonement: and thou shalt cleanse the altar, when thou hast made an atonement for it, and thou shalt anoint it, to sanctify it.
Ex:29:37: Seven days thou shalt make an atonement for the altar, and sanctify it; and it shall be an altar most holy: whatsoever toucheth the altar shall be holy.
Ex:29:38: Now this is that which thou shalt offer upon the altar; two lambs of the first year day by day continually.
Ex:29:39: The one lamb thou shalt offer in the morning; and the other lamb thou shalt offer at even:
Ex:29:40: And with the one lamb a tenth deal of flour mingled with the fourth part of an hin of beaten oil; and the fourth part of an hin of wine for a drink offering.
Ex:29:41: And the other lamb thou shalt offer at even, and shalt do thereto according to the meat offering of the morning, and according to the drink offering thereof, for a sweet savour, an offering made by fire unto the LORD.
Ex:29:42: This shall be a continual burnt offering throughout your generations at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation before the LORD: where I will meet you, to speak there unto thee.

Animals would be killed there, and their blood would be splattered all over the holy men and their garments! Every day at least 2 baby animals would be senselessly killed for God’s enjoyment of the "sweet savor". Somehow this would atone for any sin committed by an Israelite! What sort of a twisted mind could come up with such heartless, idiotic nonsense?

Ex:30:12: When thou takest the sum of the children of Israel after their number, then shall they give every man a ransom for his soul unto the LORD, when thou numberest them; that there be no plague among them, when thou numberest them.
Ex:30:13: This they shall give, every one that passeth among them that are numbered, half a shekel after the shekel of the sanctuary: (a shekel is twenty gerahs:) an half shekel shall be the offering of the LORD.
Ex:30:14: Every one that passeth among them that are numbered, from twenty years old and above, shall give an offering unto the LORD.
Ex:30:15: The rich shall not give more, and the poor shall not give less than half a shekel, when they give an offering unto the LORD, to make an atonement for your souls.

God threatened his chosen people with "plagues" if they didn’t pay him half a shekel each. I believe this is called "extortion". Protestants rightly protested against the Catholic Church selling indulgences, but the Catholics certainly have a precedent here in the Bible; God himself sold "atonement for the soul" to his chosen people, and threatened to punish anyone who didn’t pay up!

Ex:30:21: So they shall wash their hands and their feet, that they die not: and it shall be a statute for ever to them, even to him and to his seed throughout their generations.

Here God threatened to kill any priest who failed to wash properly!

Ex:32:9: And the LORD said unto Moses, I have seen this people, and, behold, it is a stiffnecked people:
Ex:32:10: Now therefore let me alone, that my wrath may wax hot against them, and that I may consume them: and I will make of thee a great nation.
Ex:32:11: And Moses besought the LORD his God, and said, LORD, why doth thy wrath wax hot against thy people, which thou hast brought forth out of the land of Egypt with great power, and with a mighty hand?

Ex:32:13: Remember Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, thy servants, to whom thou swarest by thine own self, and saidst unto them, I will multiply your seed as the stars of heaven, and all this land that I have spoken of will I give unto your seed, and they shall inherit it for ever.
Ex:32:14: And the LORD repented of the evil which he thought to do unto his people.

God decided to "consume" the Israelites. Moses had to remind him of the promises he made to their forefathers (as if God was forgetful). Then two more impossible things happened: "The LORD repented of the evil which he thought to do unto his people." How could the "all good" God propose to do evil? And how could a perfect God change his mind and repent?

When Moses came back down from the mountain, he found that Aaron had made a graven image and told the Israelites that the image was the god that led them out of Egypt. Moses asked Aaron what horrible thing the Israelites had done to him to make him break the commandment. Aaron’s reply was basically: ‘they asked me.’

Instead of punishing Aaron for making the graven image (which Aaron certainly could’ve refused to do), Moses ordered mass murder:

Ex:32:27: And he said unto them, Thus saith the LORD God of Israel, Put every man his sword by his side, and go in and out from gate to gate throughout the camp, and slay every man his brother, and every man his companion, and every man his neighbour.
Ex:32:28: And the children of Levi did according to the word of Moses: and there fell of the people that day about three thousand men.

But God let Aaron continue in his powerful role as God’s spokesman. Once again those who were the most guilty went unpunished while the less guilty were massacred.

Ex:32:31: And Moses returned unto the LORD, and said, Oh, this people have sinned a great sin, and have made them gods of gold.
Ex:32:32: Yet now, if thou wilt forgive their sin--; and if not, blot me, I pray thee, out of thy book which thou hast written.
Ex:32:33: And the LORD said unto Moses, Whosoever hath sinned against me, him will I blot out of my book.

God refused Moses’ request: he would not forgive the sinners, but blotted their names out of his book. That means Aaron’s name would have been blotted out.

Ex:34:1: And the LORD said unto Moses, Hew thee two tables of stone like unto the first: and I will write upon these tables the words that were in the first tables, which thou brakest.

What, exactly, were the "words that were in the first tables"? Most Christians believe that the "Ten Commandments", refer to the first ten of the commandments given back in chapter 20. But this is a mistake! As I will now prove, those commandments are not what the Bible refers to as the "Ten Commandments", and are not what was written down on the stone tablets! As we’ll see, the "Ten Commandments" of the Bible are very different from the first ten commandments in chapter 20.

First, let us note that after receiving the first ten commandments of chapter 20, Moses received many more commandments from God (including the command to kill witches (Ex. 22:18) and the rules about the selling of daughters (Ex. 21:7)). Chapter divisions were not included in the original manuscripts of the Bible, and so there is only this artificial break between the first 10 commandments and those that follow. There is nothing to indicate or imply that the first 10 of these commandments were of greater force or somehow more special than the commandments which followed.

Next, let us note that when Moses first received these commandments, nothing was written down, and no stone tablets were involved in any way. After receiving these commandments, Moses came down from the mountain and verbally recited them to the Israelites. Afterwards, Moses himself wrote down "all the words of the Lord" (which would’ve been considerably more commandments than ten):

Ex:24:3: And Moses came and told the people all the words of the LORD, and all the judgments: and all the people answered with one voice, and said, All the words which the LORD hath said will we do.
Ex:24:4: And Moses wrote all the words of the LORD, and rose up early in the morning, and builded an altar under the hill, and twelve pillars, according to the twelve tribes of Israel.

In a later verse, what Moses wrote is referred to as a "book" (Ex. 24:7). Stone tablets are not mentioned until later, when God asked Moses to climb up the mountain yet again:

Ex:24:12: And the LORD said unto Moses, Come up to me into the mount, and be there: and I will give thee tables of stone, and a law, and commandments which I have written; that thou mayest teach them.

But when Moses went up the mountain again, God went into the detailed description of the tabernacle, the killing of animals, and the Sabbath. Nowhere in this section is there anything (other than the mention of the Sabbath) resembling those first ten commandments of chapter 20. Then we read:

Ex:31:18: And he gave unto Moses, when he had made an end of communing with him upon mount Sinai, two tables of testimony, tables of stone, written with the finger of God.

Ex:32:15: And Moses turned, and went down from the mount, and the two tables of the testimony were in his hand: the tables were written on both their sides; on the one side and on the other were they written.
Ex:32:16: And the tables were the work of God, and the writing was the writing of God, graven upon the tables.

Ex:32:19: And it came to pass, as soon as he came nigh unto the camp, that he saw the calf, and the dancing: and Moses' anger waxed hot, and he cast the tables out of his hands, and brake them beneath the mount.

We are not told what God wrote on these tablets of stone. All we know is that Moses broke them. Fortunately, we can deduce what was written on those original tablets of stone because God promised to write on the new tablets "the words that were in the first tables" which Moses broke (Ex. 34:1).

Ex:34:4: And he hewed two tables of stone like unto the first; and Moses rose up early in the morning, and went up unto mount Sinai, as the LORD had commanded him, and took in his hand the two tables of stone.

Ex:34:10: And he said, Behold, I make a covenant: before all thy people I will do marvels, such as have not been done in all the earth, nor in any nation: and all the people among which thou art shall see the work of the LORD: for it is a terrible thing that I will do with thee.
Ex:34:11: Observe thou that which I command thee this day: behold, I drive out before thee the Amorite, and the Canaanite, and the Hittite, and the Perizzite, and the Hivite, and the Jebusite.
Ex:34:12: Take heed to thyself, lest thou make a covenant with the inhabitants of the land whither thou goest, lest it be for a snare in the midst of thee
Ex:34:13: But ye shall destroy their altars, break their images, and cut down their groves:
Ex:34:14: For thou shalt worship no other god: for the LORD, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God:
Ex:34:15: Lest thou make a covenant with the inhabitants of the land, and they go a whoring after their gods, and do sacrifice unto their gods, and one call thee, and thou eat of his sacrifice;
Ex:34:16: And thou take of their daughters unto thy sons, and their daughters go a whoring after their gods, and make thy sons go a whoring after their gods.
Ex:34:17: Thou shalt make thee no molten gods.
Ex:34:18: The feast of unleavened bread shalt thou keep. Seven days thou shalt eat unleavened bread, as I commanded thee, in the time of the month Abib: for in the month Abib thou camest out from Egypt.
Ex:34:19: All that openeth the matrix is mine; and every firstling among thy cattle, whether ox or sheep, that is male.
Ex:34:20: But the firstling of an ass thou shalt redeem with a lamb: and if thou redeem him not, then shalt thou break his neck. All the firstborn of thy sons thou shalt redeem. And none shall appear before me empty.
Ex:34:21: Six days thou shalt work, but on the seventh day thou shalt rest: in earing time and in harvest thou shalt rest.
Ex:34:22: And thou shalt observe the feast of weeks, of the firstfruits of wheat harvest, and the feast of ingathering at the year's end.
Ex:34:23: Thrice in the year shall all your men children appear before the Lord GOD, the God of Israel.
Ex:34:24: For I will cast out the nations before thee, and enlarge thy borders: neither shall any man desire thy land, when thou shalt go up to appear before the LORD thy God thrice in the year.
Ex:34:25: Thou shalt not offer the blood of my sacrifice with leaven; neither shall the sacrifice of the feast of the passover be left unto the morning.
Ex:34:26: The first of the firstfruits of thy land thou shalt bring unto the house of the LORD thy God. Thou shalt not seethe a kid in his mother's milk.
Ex:34:27: And the LORD said unto Moses, Write thou these words: for after the tenor of these words I have made a covenant with thee and with Israel.
Ex:34:28: And he was there with the LORD forty days and forty nights; he did neither eat bread, nor drink water. And he wrote upon the tables the words of the covenant, the ten commandments.

These, then, are the "ten commandments" according to the Bible. If we look at them in summary we can clearly see how they differ from what people have mistaken for the "ten commandments":


 Thou shalt not worship any other god.


 Thou shalt not make molten gods.


 Thou shalt keep the feast of unleavened bread.


 Thou shalt kill firstborn male animals.


 Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy.


 Thou shalt observe the feast of weeks, wheat-harvest, and ingathering.


 Thou shalt have all thy males appear before the Lord three times a year.


 Thou shalt not offer leaven with the blood sacrifice or have Passover leftovers.


 Thou shalt bring the firstfruits of thy land unto the Lord.


 Thou shalt not cook a baby animal in its mother's milk.

There are only 3 commandments here which match any of the first 10 commandments of chapter 20.

As can be seen, these commandments are more concerned with ritualistic attempts to appease a fussy deity than they are with formulating a moral code.

The fourth commandment (to kill firstborn male animals) is in direct contradiction to God’s previous commandment:

Ex:20:13: Thou shalt not kill.

The tenth commandment is particularly interesting. If the Almighty wanted to encapsulate all of the moral duties of humankind into 10 succinct commandments, why would he use up one of them to tell us not to cook a baby animal in its mother’s milk? What was so terrible about that?

It turns out our ancestors were a superstitious lot. They didn’t have the benefit of centuries of building upon scientific knowledge that we have today. When they sought the reason for why things occurred, they looked to "sympathetic magic".

Sympathetic magic is the belief that there are mysterious connections between things, so that if you do something to one thing you will magically affect something else that it is somehow connected to.

Voodoo is a prime example of sympathetic magic. The believer in Voodoo thinks that if you make a doll and give it any kind of connection to a human being (such as wrapping a strand of their hair around the doll), then whatever you do to the doll (such as sticking needles into it) will also happen to the human.

A baby animal would have a strong magical connection to its mother. But the connection wasn’t so strong that killing the baby animal would kill the mother. But milk from the mother would also have a strong magical connection to the mother, and if you added this to the equation (by boiling the calf in its mother’s milk) you would certainly be courting disaster with your cattle.

So, one of the Bible’s "ten commandments" (which some people erroneously claim are the basis of all modern day laws!) is nothing but primitive sympathetic magic!

The first tablets (which Moses broke) were written directly by "the finger of God" (Ex. 31:18). God promised that he himself would also write the replacement set (Ex. 34:1). Yet, in the end, God orders Moses to write on the stone tablets, and God doesn’t write on them after all (Ex. 34:27,28).

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