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 13: 1 Chronicles

1Chron:10:13: So Saul died for his transgression which he committed against the LORD, even against the word of the LORD, which he kept not, and also for asking counsel of one that had a familiar spirit, to enquire of it;
1Chron:10:14: And enquired not of the LORD: therefore he slew him, and turned the kingdom unto David the son of Jesse.

Actually, Saul had inquired of the Lord, according to the Biblical book of First Samuel. It was only after the Lord refused to answer him that he sought the counsel of a witch:

1Sam:28:6: And when Saul enquired of the LORD, the LORD answered him not, neither by dreams nor by Urim, nor by prophets.
1Sam:28:7: Then said Saul unto his servants, Seek me a woman that hath a familiar spirit, that I may go to her, and enquire of her. And his servants said to him, Behold, there is a woman that hath a familiar spirit at Endor.

1Chron:11:3: Therefore came all the elders of Israel to the king to Hebron; and David made a covenant with them in Hebron before the LORD; and they anointed David king over Israel, according to the word of the LORD by Samuel.

According to the book of Samuel, the above is not true. All of the elders of Israel did not come to Hebron for David's anointing. Instead, Samuel went to David's hometown of Bethlehem and anointed him in the presence of the elders of that town:

1Sam:16:4: And Samuel did that which the LORD spake, and came to Bethlehem. And the elders of the town trembled at his coming, and said, Comest thou peaceably?1Sam:16:13: Then Samuel took the horn of oil, and anointed him in the midst of his brethren: and the Spirit of the LORD came upon David from that day forward. So Samuel rose up, and went to Ramah.

1Chron:11:4: And David and all Israel went to Jerusalem, which is Jebus; where the Jebusites were, the inhabitants of the land.

Did "all Israel" really accompany David to Jerusalem? Even the elderly, the women, and the children? Based on the census David took, there would have been about 3 million Israelites at that time. Millions of Israelites all traveling to one city at the same time would be a huge logistical nightmare: how would they all be supplied with food and shelter along the way? How would waste be disposed of? Where would they all go once they got there? How could the lepers and menstruating women accompany them when the law stipulated that they must be separated from the general population? Who would look after their cattle in their absence? Why wouldn't their enemies occupy all of the abandoned cities of Israel? These are just a few of the problems which spring to mind and make the above verse seem very unlikely to be true. 2 Sam. 5:6 tells us that it was only "the king and his men" that "went to Jerusalem."

1Chron:13:9: And when they came unto the threshingfloor of Chidon, Uzza put forth his hand to hold the ark; for the oxen stumbled.1Chron:13:10: And the anger of the LORD was kindled against Uzza, and he smote him, because he put his hand to the ark: and there he died before God.

Uzza's intentions were good: he was trying to steady the ark to keep it from falling when the oxen stumbled. God evidently wanted to make it clear that he didn't need any help from a mere mortal man, and so he killed Uzza! We hear a lot about God being "forgiving", but here we see God being unforgiving, and punishing good intentions!

The Almighty evidently had no problem with oxen helping him to transport his precious ark from one place to another: it was just people whose help he couldn't abide!

1Chron:14:13: And the Philistines yet again spread themselves abroad in the valley.
1Chron:14:14: Therefore David enquired again of God; and God said unto him, Go not up after them; turn away from them, and come upon them over against the mulberry trees.
1Chron:14:15: And it shall be, when thou shalt hear a sound of going in the tops of the mulberry trees, that then thou shalt go out to battle: for God is gone forth before thee to smite the host of the Philistines.

Why had God created Philistines? All he seemed to want to do with them was kill them. God went out before David to "smite the host of the Philistines". Here is an instance of God acting as a mass murderer. What a "loving heavenly father" is this God!

1Chron:15:11: And David called for Zadok and Abiathar the priests, and for the Levites, for Uriel, Asaiah, and Joel, Shemaiah, and Eliel, and Amminadab,
1Chron:15:12: And said unto them, Ye are the chief of the fathers of the Levites: sanctify yourselves, both ye and your brethren, that ye may bring up the ark of the LORD God of Israel unto the place that I have prepared for it.
1Chron:15:13: For because ye did it not at the first, the LORD our God made a breach upon us, for that we sought him not after the due order.

According to 1 Chron. 13:11-14, David was the one who made the decision not to bring the ark to Jerusalem:

1Chron:13:11: And David was displeased, because the LORD had made a breach upon Uzza: wherefore that place is called Perez-uzza to this day.1Chron:13:12: And David was afraid of God that day, saying, How shall I bring the ark of God home to me?
1Chron:13:13: So David brought not the ark home to himself to the city of David, but carried it aside into the house of Obed-edom the Gittite.
1Chron:13:14: And the ark of God remained with the family of Obed-edom in his house three months. And the LORD blessed the house of Obed-edom, and all that he had.

Yet he passed the blame onto the priests and the Levites, saying "because ye did it not at the first, the LORD our God made a breach upon us". So now we know from the Bible's example of right conduct how to pass responsibility for our own actions onto others.

1Chron:16:14: He is the LORD our God; his judgments are in all the earth.1Chron:16:15: Be ye mindful always of his covenant; the word which he commanded to a thousand generations;
1Chron:16:16: Even of the covenant which he made with Abraham, and of his oath unto Isaac;
1Chron:16:17: And hath confirmed the same to Jacob for a law, and to Israel for an everlasting covenant,
1Chron:16:18: Saying, Unto thee will I give the land of Canaan, the lot of your inheritance;
1Chron:16:19: When ye were but few, even a few, and strangers in it.
1Chron:16:20: And when they went from nation to nation, and from one kingdom to another people;
1Chron:16:21: He suffered no man to do them wrong: yea, he reproved kings for their sakes,
1Chron:16:22: Saying, Touch not mine anointed, and do my prophets no harm.

If it is true that God allowed no man to do wrong to the Israelites as they conquered Canaan, then all of the following Biblical accounts must be false:

Josh:7:5: And the men of Ai smote of them about thirty and six men: for they chased them from before the gate even unto Shebarim, and smote them in the going down: wherefore the hearts of the people melted, and became as water.

Josh:11:19: There was not a city that made peace with the children of Israel, save the Hivites the inhabitants of Gibeon: all other they took in battle.Josh:11:20: For it was of the LORD to harden their hearts, that they should come against Israel in battle, that he might destroy them utterly, and that they might have no favour, but that he might destroy them, as the LORD commanded Moses.

Judg:2:14: And the anger of the LORD was hot against Israel, and he delivered them into the hands of spoilers that spoiled them, and he sold them into the hands of their enemies round about, so that they could not any longer stand before their enemies.
Judg:2:15: Whithersoever they went out, the hand of the LORD was against them for evil, as the LORD had said, and as the LORD had sworn unto them: and they were greatly distressed.

1Chron:16:30: Fear before him, all the earth: the world also shall be stable, that it be not moved.

The Earth is in constant motion as it orbits the sun, revolves around its axis, tilts with the changing seasons, and moves as part of the Milky Way galaxy which is constantly expanding. It also moves in the sense of shifting tectonic plates and earthquakes which occur daily. I would be hard pressed to dream up a statement more contrary to reality than "the world also shall be stable, that it be not moved."

1Chron:18:4: And David took from him a thousand chariots, and seven thousand horsemen, and twenty thousand footmen: David also houghed all the chariot horses, but reserved of them an hundred chariots.


"Houghed" means "hamstrung", and is so translated in more recent versions of the Bible. To hamstring a horse means to cut the large tendon of the back leg, therby crippling the animal. So David committed animal abuse on thousands of horses. Another great moral example for us.

1Chron:20:3: And he brought out the people that were in it, and cut them with saws, and with harrows of iron, and with axes. Even so dealt David with all the cities of the children of Ammon. And David and all the people returned to Jerusalem.

It's bad enough that David killed thousands of people, but to kill them with saws and axes is unspeakably cruel. No matter how evil a criminal on death-row might be, our society chooses what it believes to be the most humane method of execution possible. But here, in the "word of God" we have David -- a "hero of the Bible" -- setting a very different example. If we are serious about using the Bible as our guide for moral living, then we should forget about lethal injections and start sharpening our saws and axes!

1Chron:21:1: And Satan stood up against Israel, and provoked David to number Israel.

This incident was instigated by God, not Satan, according to Second Samuel:

2Sam:24:1: And again the anger of the LORD was kindled against Israel, and he moved David against them to say, Go, number Israel and Judah.

There are several other contradictions in these two accounts: please see the reference to this in the chapter on 2 Samuel for details.

1Chron:21:7: And God was displeased with this thing; therefore he smote Israel.
1Chron:21:8: And David said unto God, I have sinned greatly, because I have done this thing: but now, I beseech thee, do away the iniquity of thy servant; for I have done very foolishly.

1Chron:21:14: So the LORD sent pestilence upon Israel: and there fell of Israel seventy thousand men.
1Chron:21:15: And God sent an angel unto Jerusalem to destroy it: and as he was destroying, the LORD beheld, and he repented him of the evil, and said to the angel that destroyed, It is enough, stay now thine hand. And the angel of the LORD stood by the threshingfloor of Ornan the Jebusite.
1Chron:21:16: And David lifted up his eyes, and saw the angel of the LORD stand between the earth and the heaven, having a drawn sword in his hand stretched out over Jerusalem. Then David and the elders of Israel, who were clothed in sackcloth, fell upon their faces.
1Chron:21:17: And David said unto God, Is it not I that commanded the people to be numbered? even I it is that have sinned and done evil indeed; but as for these sheep, what have they done? let thine hand, I pray thee, O LORD my God, be on me, and on my father's house; but not on thy people, that they should be plagued.

David had numbered Israel in the past (as had Moses). In those cases the census-taking was not considered a sin. There is no law in all the Bible against taking a census. But for some reason (if we are to believe this account) God decided this particular census was a sin, and he decided to kill 70,000 innocent men for it.

Even David could see that it was unjust of God to kill 70,000 men for a sin David alone had committed.

There are two more contradictions in this story.

First of all, this relates a sin David committed. A sin that God considered so horrendous that he felt justified in killing 70,000 men. Yet, we are elsewhere told in the Bible that David always walked in the ways of the Lord and never did anything wrong (other than coveting Uriah's wife and ordering his murder so he could have her) :

1Kgs:15:5: Because David did that which was right in the eyes of the LORD, and turned not aside from any thing that he commanded him all the days of his life, save only in the matter of Uriah the Hittite.

Secondly, it relates that God "repented him of the evil". Not only does this state that God intended evil (hardly the behavior one would expect from a "God of love"), but that he repented: something the Bible says is quite impossible:

Num:23:19: God is not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good?

1Chron:22:8: But the word of the LORD came to me, saying, Thou hast shed blood abundantly, and hast made great wars: thou shalt not build an house unto my name, because thou hast shed much blood upon the earth in my sight.
1Chron:22:9: Behold, a son shall be born to thee, who shall be a man of rest; and I will give him rest from all his enemies round about: for his name shall be Solomon, and I will give peace and quietness unto Israel in his days.
1Chron:22:10: He shall build an house for my name; and he shall be my son, and I will be his father; and I will establish throne of his kingdom over Israel for ever.

God rejected David's offer to build him a house because David had shed so much blood in wars. But God had commanded David to engage in those wars, had commended David's participation in them, and had even fought with David against his enemies! It seems rather strange that God would object to David becoming a home-builder because of those God-sanctioned and God-assisted killings.

In any case, God promised that David's son Solomon would have peace and quiet, and would be a "man of rest". Solomon would then be an acceptable person to build God's house. But as we have seen, David's son Solomon was anything but a man of peace. His first actions upon taking the throne were cold-blooded murders. He even had a man killed right upon God's sacred altar:

1Kgs:2:24: Now therefore, as the LORD liveth, which hath established me, and set me on the throne of David my father, and who hath made me an house, as he promised, Adonijah shall be put to death this day.
1Kgs:2:25: And king Solomon sent by the hand of Benaiah the son of Jehoiada; and he fell upon him that he died.

1Kgs:2:29: And it was told king Solomon that Joab was fled unto the tabernacle of the LORD; and, behold, he is by the altar. Then Solomon sent Benaiah the son of Jehoiada, saying, Go, fall upon him.

1Kgs:2:34: So Benaiah the son of Jehoiada went up, and fell upon him, and slew him: and he was buried in his own house in the wilderness.

We also are told in the Bible that, far from giving Solomon "rest from all his enemies round about," God actually "stirred up" enemies against him:

1Kgs:11:14: And the LORD stirred up an adversary unto Solomon, Hadad the Edomite: he was of the king's seed in Edom.

1Kgs:11:23: And God stirred him up another adversary, Rezon the son of Eliadah, which fled from his lord Hadadezer king of Zobah: 1Kgs:11:24: And he gathered men unto him, and became captain over a band, when David slew them of Zobah: and they went to Damascus, and dwelt therein, and reigned in Damascus.
1Kgs:11:25: And he was an adversary to Israel all the days of Solomon, beside the mischief that Hadad did: and he abhorred Israel, and reigned over Syria.
1Kgs:11:26: And Jeroboam the son of Nebat, an Ephrathite of Zereda, Solomon's servant, whose mother's name was Zeruah, a widow woman, even he lifted up his hand against the king.

1Chron:29:20: And David said to all the congregation, Now bless the LORD your God. And all the congregation blessed the LORD God of their fathers, and bowed down their heads, and worshipped the LORD, and the king.

What does it mean to bless God? Normally, a blessing is given to a person with the words: "God bless you". I take this to mean that the person offering the blessing is stating their wish that God will do something nice for the person they are addressing (as if the ultimate source of all goodness wouldn't do something nice unless prompted). Often this is abbreviated simply: "bless you" (particularly -- for superstitious reasons -- after a person sneezes!) In such cases, "God" may be implied.

In any case it doesn't seem to make sense to bless God: the almighty ruler of the universe! Nothing bad could ever happen to God, so wishing something "nice" to happen to him seems pointless. And if God is the source of "every good and perfect gift" then we would be asking that he do something nice for himself (in essence saying "God bless God"). While this might make sense to say to an overworked human being, it seems misguided and presumptuous to say to the ultimate being.

Notice that this verse also says that the congregation bowed their heads and "worshipped the LORD, and the king." The Bible repeatedly states how jealous God is and how upset he gets when anything is worshipped other than himself. The Mosaic Law explicitly forbade bowing down and worshipping anything other than God. Bowing down and worshipping King David certainly broke this law. Why then did this act of idolatry go unpunished? Why did it pass by without comment by the writer as if nothing wrong had been done?

1Chron:29:24: And all the princes, and the mighty men, and all the sons likewise of king David, submitted themselves unto Solomon the king.

According to 2 Kings 2:13-25, all of David's sons did not "submit themselves unto Solomon". Solomon had his brother Adonijah killed when he evidently suspected him of trying to stake a claim to the throne by marrying David's former "nurse" Abishag:

1Kgs:2:15: And he said, Thou knowest that the kingdom was mine, and that all Israel set their faces on me, that I should reign: howbeit the kingdom is turned about, and is become my brother's: for it was his from the LORD.
1Kgs:2:16: And now I ask one petition of thee, deny me not. And she said unto him, Say on.
1Kgs:2:17: And he said, Speak, I pray thee, unto Solomon the king, (for he will not say thee nay,) that he give me Abishag the Shunammite to wife.

1Kgs:2:23: Then king Solomon sware by the LORD, saying, God do so to me, and more also, if Adonijah have not spoken this word against his own life.
1Kgs:2:24: Now therefore, as the LORD liveth, which hath established me, and set me on the throne of David my father, and who hath made me an house, as he promised, Adonijah shall be put to death this day.
1Kgs:2:25: And king Solomon sent by the hand of Benaiah the son of Jehoiada; and he fell upon him that he died.

So David's son Adonijah never did "submit himself unto Solomon the king".

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