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God's Anger

Discussion in 'Abrahamic Religions DIR' started by Tranquil Servant, Feb 21, 2019.

  1. Tranquil Servant

    Tranquil Servant Was M.I.A for a while

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    Hi guys...recently I posted a thread asking you guys if you think God feels or has emotion Does God feel? and I was surprised to see that some ppl believe God doesn't get angry. I don't understand why because the bible has many verses about God's anger....
    Exodus 22:24
    My anger will be aroused, and I will kill you with the sword; your wives will become widows and your children fatherless.
    Leviticus 26:28
    then in my anger I will be hostile toward you, and I myself will punish you for your sins seven times
    Numbers 25:4
    The Lord said to Moses, “Take all the leaders of these people, kill them and expose them in broad daylight before the Lord, so that the Lord’s fierce anger may turn away from Israel.”
    2 Kings 22:13
    “Go and inquire of the Lord for me and for the people and for all Judah about what is written in this book that has been found. Great is the Lord’s anger that burns against us because those who have gone before us have not obeyed the words of this book; they have not acted in accordance with all that is written there concerning us.”

    These are just a very few of God expressing his anger (or one of his prophets describing his anger) so I wanna know what do guys think?
     
  2. shunyadragon

    shunyadragon Well-Known Member
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    This is an anthropomorphic view of God from the human perspective.
     
  3. Windwalker

    Windwalker Integralist
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    I know I was one of them. :) I'll be happy to answer why, since it is really a question to me as well, isn't it?

    It would take me awhile to try to explain, but I'll say in a nutshell is because I have and do experience God. And there is nothing in God that is fearful. It's not possible to exist, as the nature of God is pure, and absolute Love. There is nor can possibly be any darkness in God.

    That's first. Then there is the fact that as you learn more and more about religion, and spiritual seeking in humans, and the history of culture and the Bible, the origins, the technicalities of it, and so forth, you see that, while the Bible speaks deep spiritual truths, it is however very colorized by the humans of the culture and time and way of perceiving the world and God would have spoken about him. The mindsets with which they saw God, would reflect their own minds and cultures of the day.

    One does not have to believe the Bible is the literal dictation of God, to find spiritual, and Divine Truth within its pages. Those that tell you it has too, can't quite yet see beyond the book to the Spirit which inspired it through the voices of human beings who imagined thunder in the night sky was God about to unleash a war from heaven against the earth.

    Please ask me more questions if you're curious. It's not necessary in my view that you have to think as I do about God, but I think it's good to come to understand for anyone that God cannot be placed into a box of our beliefs, and not see that God is bigger than that and exists as bright as the noon day sun in others outside our boxes for God. :)
     
  4. Earthling

    Earthling David Henson
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    I think you did a good job of answering your own question. God obviously has feelings, such as anger.
     
  5. Tranquil Servant

    Tranquil Servant Was M.I.A for a while

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    Oooh yeah Windwalker I remember now but I don't think you were the only one....hmmm
    [​IMG] Idk...I can't remember and I'm too tired to look back in the thread but I know I've definitely heard other ppl say that God is love and that he doesn't get angry. I've actually been hearing this all my life. Anyway, I appreciate your explanation and I do agree with the fact that when the scriptures were written, the the mindset, perception, ways of speaking, culture and more, strongly influenced the way the scriptures were written. However, if God was never angry, then why did he Flood and destroy the world (mankind and whatever other beasts) once already (Noah's ark) and why did he destroy Sodom and Gomorrah and why did he send some of his earlier prophets and messengers to fight or destroy.... do the actions not match the language being used? Do you believe these things actually happened?
     
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  6. Windwalker

    Windwalker Integralist
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    Good. :) There are lots of things we hear others say in life that we don't get until some other point later in life. It's amazing how many things the wisdom of my father was trying to tell me about such things when I was younger, that only much later do I understand the basis for it. Life experience has a lot to do with that. But when were younger, we think how we see things, is the reality of things.

    How humans have perceived God, what they imagine about God and project onto God from their own psyches has and does continue to evolve historically into today and beyond into tomorrow. Our understandings of God evolves along with us.

    You can see that in our own lives. When we were a child, how we held the image of God in our minds, what God was to us, is not the same thing God is seen and understood in later in life. All of it is about God, but God to us becomes much "larger" the more developed we become. And this holds true into adulthood for many, though not all. Many settle on a certain image and that's where they stay. Others may keep going.

    As I said, in our historical childhood, we as humans would project onto God our own interior landscapes, such as a fears, our guilt, our shame, our angers, and so forth. Because we feel shame and guilt, we assume that "mom and dad" are going to be mad and punish us, from the mind of a child imagining the future response to getting caught.

    So for example, let's say you were someone living some 2500 years ago and your knowledge of the world and why things happen was very limited, like a child's understanding of life is very small at that stage of life for them. Some major catastrophic event happens that you can't control of understand. The mind of a child, and this is well-known in psychology, will think it's because of something they did wrong. Mom and dad getting divorced is their fault, somehow.

    Now imagine you are living your life in your community, and some invading foreign power comes and sweeps away your friends and family, and hauls them off into another land away from your home. They then destroy your church you went to your whole life, and your house, and then they raze your city to the ground and you are left sitting in the ashes mourning the loss. In your grief and fear and anger you cry out, "Oh Lord, why have you punished us? What sin have we done to bring this upon ourselves?" You then bargain with God, "If we turn from our sins, you will restore us?" This then gives you some hope, and you reach out to others who remain in the ashes with you and you proclaim to them that God has made a promise to you, "If my people which are called by name shall turn from their wicked ways, I will restore unto them their land". Etc. This is of course the underlying conditions behind the book of Lamentations, in the Bible.

    So real historical events are interepretted as acts of God, projecting the author's own imaginations upon God as all-powerful and fearful. There are other reasons for some of the stories as well, such as stories to convey greater truths than the actual contents of the story. These can be understood as parables. They many never have happened, such as the parable of the Good Samaritan, yet they contain a certain truth that is greater than the "facts" of the story. The "facts" miss the point of the story actually. This is the nature of mythology. The truth is greater than the facts. It doesn't matter if Noah's flood is not a real historical event (and it is not). That's not the point of the story.

    People who get stuck on literalism end up not hearing the important parts. I have a really good essay I found years ago that I refer to all the time to help others understand the nature of symbolism and mythology in religion as a vehicle for truth. Literalism kills that in too many ways. I'll let you read the brief essay for yourself, but I'll share one quote from it here.

    The early ethnologist R. R. Marett is noted for his dictum that “religion is not so much thought out as danced out.” But even when thought out, religion is focused in the verbal equivalent of the dance: myth, symbol and metaphor. To insist on assigning to it a literal, one-dimensional meaning is to shrink and stifle and distort the significance. In the words of E. H. W. Meyer- stein, “Myth is my tongue, which means not that I cheat, but stagger in a light too great to bear.” Religious expression trembles with a sense of inexpressible mystery, a mystery which nevertheless addresses us in the totality of our being.

    The literal imagination is univocal. Words mean one thing, and one thing only. They don’t bristle with meanings and possibilities; they are bald, clean-shaven. Literal clarity and simplicity, to be sure, offer a kind of security in a world (or Bible) where otherwise issues seem incorrigibly complex, ambiguous and muddy. But it is a false security, a temporary bastion, maintained by dogmatism and misguided loyalty. Literalism pays a high price for the hope of having firm and unbreakable handles attached to reality. The result is to move in the opposite direction from religious symbolism, emptying symbols of their amplitude of meaning and power, reducing the cosmic dance to a calibrated discussion.​

    From here: Biblical Literalism: Constricting the Cosmic Dance – Religion Online

    Let me know what you think. I'm more than happy to help shed some more light of my way of understanding these things.
     
  7. IndigoChild5559

    IndigoChild5559 Loving God and my neighbor as myself.

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    They are called anthropomorphizations, times when we speak of God AS THOUGH he were human, even though he is not. Other examples are when we speak of God having an arm or a face.
     
  8. Remté

    Remté Active Member

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    I'm sure there can't be positive emotions without negative ones.
     
  9. danieldemol

    danieldemol Well-Known Member
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    I tend to imagine God is capable of righteous anger, like when God sows division in the hearts of drug dealers so that they turn on each other.

    The chief difference between me and a fundamentalist in this regard would probably be that a fundamentalist may see God’s punishments as permanent vengeance, whereas I would see them as intended to reform the souls of the recipients of divine justice.

    Thanks for asking a challenging question :)
     
    #9 danieldemol, Mar 1, 2019
    Last edited: Mar 1, 2019
  10. sooda

    sooda Well-Known Member

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    So attributing human characteristics to God. I find that weird, but the message in Genesis is that man is created in God's image... one would expect him to be emotional.
     
  11. shunyadragon

    shunyadragon Well-Known Member
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    Creation in the image of God image would not translate to God being emotional, particularly in the negative sense. All of our physical existence is Created in God's attributes, and that does not equate to God being physical.

    Negative attributes such as anger, jealousy, selfishness, and materialism are negative attributes in opposition to God's attributes of Justice, unselfish love, compassion, knowledge, and detachment are the attributes of God.

    This is in line with the belief that evil in and of itself does not exist, and it is the absence of the attributes of God.
     
  12. sooda

    sooda Well-Known Member

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    I get what you are saying, but scripture often speaks of God's wrath, God's vengeance, God's anger, God's jealousy.. What is a body supposed to think?
     
  13. sooda

    sooda Well-Known Member

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    Something to consider.. The ancient gods of the Egyptians, Greeks and Romans all had violent human emotions.. including lust, vengeance, anger etc.. is it so unusual that the ancient Hebrews used language like this:

    Exodus 22:24
    My anger will be aroused, and I will kill you with the sword; your wives will become widows and your children fatherless.
    Leviticus 26:28
    then in my anger I will be hostile toward you, and I myself will punish you for your sins seven times
    Numbers 25:4
    The Lord said to Moses, “Take all the leaders of these people, kill them and expose them in broad daylight before the Lord, so that the Lord’s fierce anger may turn away from Israel.”
     
  14. shunyadragon

    shunyadragon Well-Known Member
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    This is the problem with the ancient anthropomorphic view of God that dominated ancient religions. This reflects the fallible human view of God found in ancient scriptures.
     
  15. sooda

    sooda Well-Known Member

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    LOLOL Maybe I've seen too many marble statues.. like The rape of Persephone... or Apollo and Daphne.[​IMG]


    You do know exactly what I'm talking about.
     
  16. shunyadragon

    shunyadragon Well-Known Member
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    Not sure I know the point you are making other than indeed humans create Gods in their own image.

    LOLOL - a little humor maybe?
     
  17. sooda

    sooda Well-Known Member

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    Yes, I think we do.. and yes I intended to make you laugh.
     
  18. IndigoChild5559

    IndigoChild5559 Loving God and my neighbor as myself.

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    I think when we speak of God having emotions we are anthropomorphizing him -- God is not like a man. But we have to talk about God in ways that we can understand. God does discipline us, so we speak about God being angry at our sinning

    I think about God being Avinu, Our Father. He loves us and wants the best of us, as any Father would. Therefore he sets reasonable boundaries, and consequences when we break those boundaries. His objective is to mould us into better people, to help us become all that we can be. Thus his discipline isn't done out of vengeance and anger so much as they are done with the objective of improving us. Whether we respond positively or not is up to us.

    Of course, he is also Malkenu, our King. If after all his loving discipline we persist in our sins, he is after all a God of justice as well.
     
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