You’ll eat your kids: tweeting Isaiah through Ezekiel

Previously in Tweeting my way through the Bible: Genesis and Exodus, Leviticus through Deuteronomy, Joshua through Psalms, Proverbs through Song of Songs.

You may want to skip this post. Seriously. I’ve read the Bible cover to cover twice before, but reading these books as carefully as was required by “Tweeting my way through the Bible” project was one of the most depressing things I’ve ever done. Among other things, Jeremiah and Ezekiel both use viciously misogynistic metaphors to denounce following other gods, and all four books describe people eating their family members as a side-effect of God’s punishments. That’s something we’ve seen before in Leviticus and Deuteronomy, but four books in a row… eck.

The worst part is is that I pretty quickly got to the point where I was flat-out ignoring most of the bad stuff, because it had totally ceased to be surprising. What you see below is the worst of the worst, rather than all of it. On the plus side, whenever I’m feeling down I can just read Jeremiah and think to myself, “Well, at least the god of the Old Testament isn’t real.”

  • Isaiah 3:16-17 “The Lord said: Because the daughters of Zion are haughty and walk with outstretched necks, glancing wantonly with their…
  • …eyes, mincing along as they go, tinkling with their feet, the Lord will afflict with scabs the heads of the daughters of Zion, and the…
  • …Lord will lay bare their secret parts.
  • Isaiah 9:17: God didn’t have compassion for the orphans and widows, because they were all godless evildoers.
  • Isaiah 9:19-20: Because of God’s wrath, “the people became like fuel for the fire,” and they ate their own family members.
  • Isaiah 13:15: “Whoever is found will be thrust through, and whoever is caught will fall by the sword.”
  • Isaiah 13:16: “Their infants will be dashed in pieces before their eyes; their houses will be plundered and their wives raped.”
  • Isaiah 13:18: “Their bows will slaughter the young men; they will have no mercy on the fruit of the womb; their eyes will not pity children”
  • Isaiah 14:21 “Prepare slaughter for his sons because of the guilt of their fathers”
  • Isaiah 19:17 “And the land of Judah will bring terror to the Egyptians; everyone to whom Judah is mentioned will be terrified”
  • Isaiah 20:3 “My servant Isaiah has walked naked and barefoot for three years as a sign and a portent against Egypt and Ethiopia.”
  • Isaiah 45:1 The Persian emperor Cyrus is referred to as God’s messiah (Hebrew for “anointed one”)
  • Isaiah 45:7 “I form the light and create darkness, I bring prosperity and create disaster; I, the Lord, do all these things.”
  • Isaiah 49:26: “I will feed those who oppress you with their own flesh; and they shall be drunk with their own blood, as with sweet wine”
  • Isaiah 63:6: God will trample people in anger and their blood will stain his clothes.
  • Jeremiah 2:20: God says, “You said, ‘I will not serve you’ and played the whore on every hill and under every tree.”
  • Jeremiah 2:23-24: God says you are a donky in heat. “Any males that pursue her need not tire themselves; at mating time they will find her.”
  • Jeremiah 2:25 God says you said, “I have loved strangers, and after them will I go.” Those damn strangers.
  • In my Bible tweets, I try to avoid explicitly making fun, but the misogyny of some books of the Bible, such as Jeremiah, is hard to ignore.
  • Jeremiah 2:33 “How skilled you are at pursuing love! Even the worst of women can learn from your ways.”
  • Holy misogyny Batman. I remember Ezekiel being bad, forgot Jeremiah was similar.
  • Jeremiah 3:1 God says you’ve been a whore with a lot of lovers, and asks, “would you return to me now?”
  • Jeremiah 3:3: You have the look of a prostitute. You refuse to be ashamed.
  • Jeremiah 3:6 God says Israel acted like a whore on every hill and under every tree.
  • Jeremiah 3:8: God says he divorced Israel. And her sister Judah was a whore too.
  • Jeremiah 3:9: Israel’s immorality mattered so little to her that she committed adultery with stone and wood. Yay sex toys!
  • Jeremiah really needed to get laid.
  • Ezekiel too, but I’m getting ahead of myself.
  • Jeremiah 3:13: God says to acknowledge your gild–you’ve rebelled against him & “scattered your favors” to foreign gods under every tree.
  • Jeremiah 4:6: God says, “I will bring evil from the north, and a great destruction.”
  • Jeremiah 6:11 God is full of wrath, and will poor it out on children, young men, and married couples.
  • Jeremiah 6:12 “Their houses will be turned over to others, together with their fields and their wives.”
  • Jeremiah 6:19 “I will bring evil upon this people, because they have not listened to my words, nor to my law, but rejected it.”
  • Jeremiah 7:18: God sez “They make cakes for the queen of heaven, and pour out drink as an offering to other gods. This provokes me to anger”
  • Jeremiah 8:10: “Therefore I will give their wives to others…”
  • Jeremiah 12:17: “But if any nation will not listen, then I will utterly pluck it up and destroy it, says the LORD.”
  • Jeremiah 13:26: God says, “I myself will lift up your skirts over your face.”
  • Jeremiah 14:11-12: God says: Don’t pray for these people. I won’t hear their cry. I’ll consume them by the sword, famine, and pestilence.
  • Jeremiah 16:1-4: God told me not to get married and have kids, b/c sons and daughters born here, and their moms and dads, will die horribly.
  • Jeremiah 16:11: God will do this because people worshiped other gods.
  • The idea that love is the central message of the Bible is about as plausible as claiming love was the central message of Osama bin Laden.
  • Your holy book is bad and you should feel bad.
  • Jeremiah 18:21 “Therefore deliver up their children to famine; give them over to the power of the sword, let their wives become childless…
  • Jeremiah 18:21 (cont): …and widowed. May their men meet death by pestilence, their youths be slain by the sword in battle.”
  • Jeremiah 19:4,7: God says: because they have burned incense for other gods, I will make them die by the sword & animals will eat their flesh
  • Jeremiah 19:9: God also says: I will make them eat the flesh of their sons and their daughters, and their neighbors during the siege.
  • Jeremiah 29:17-19: God says, “behold, I will send the sword, famine, and pestilence upon them, because they have not listened to my words.”
  • I want to write a fantasy series with a Religion Of Evil that can’t stop talking about how merciful their deity is. #Bible #Quran
  • Typical scene: followers list things they have been commanded to do to the god’s enemies, then intone, in unison, “Great is His mercy.”
  • Jeremiah 34:22: God says He will make Babylonians burn the city and make the cities of Judah a desolation without an inhabitant.
  • Jeremiah 42:10-17: God says: stay where you are. If you go to Egypt seeking food & safety, I will bring evil upon you.
  • Jeremiah 42:18: God says: if you go to Egypt, I’ll do to you what I did to Jerusalem. You’ll become “a horror, a curse, and a taunt.”
  • Jeremiah 44: God will use the sword, famine, and pestilence to punish the Jews of Egypt for burning incense to other gods.
  • Jeremiah 46:10: “For this is… a day of vengeance… and the sword shall devour, and it shall be satiate and made drunk with their blood.”
  • Jeremiah 48:8: “The destroyer shall come upon every city… the valley shall perish, the plain shall be destroyed, as the LORD has spoken.”
  • Jeremiah 48:10 “Cursed is he who does the work of the LORD with slackness; and cursed is he who keeps back his sword from bloodshed.”
  • Jeremiah 49:2: God sez: “Rabbah of the Ammonites… shall be a desolate heap, and her daughters shall be burned with fire”
  • Lamentations 2:20 “Look, O LORD, and see! Who have you done this to? Should women eat their offspring, the children of their tender care?”
  • Lam 2:21 “In the streets lie the young and the old; my maidens and my young men have fallen by the sword” (because God killed them in anger)
  • Lam 4:4 “The tongue of the nursling cleaves to the roof of its mouth for thirst; the children beg for food, but no one gives to them.”
  • Lam 4:9 “Happier were the victims of the sword than the victims of hunger, who pined away, stricken by want of the fruits of the field.”
  • Unexpected effect of tweeting my way through the Bible: becoming numb to the horrible stuff in it. Will be glad when this is over.
  • Lam 4:10 “Compassionate women have boiled their own children; they became their food in the destruction of the daughter of my people.”
  • The God of the Old Testament had a strange obsession with forcing people to eat their own kids.
  • Lam 4:11 “The LORD gave full vent to his wrath, he poured out his hot anger; and he kindled a fire in Zion, which consumed its foundations.”
  • Lam 4:21 “You shall become drunk and strip yourself bare.”
  • Oh joy, I have to tweet my way through Ezekiel next.
  • A bit of context for the Bible’s horrors: http://www.asimovs.com/_issue_0708/ref.shtml 
  • The description of the creatures in Ezekiel 1 is somewhat hard to follow, but this seems to be the idea.
  • Ezek 5:9-10 “And because of all your abominations, I will do to you what I have never yet done… parents shall eat their children.”
  • Ezek 6:5 God says: “I will lay the dead carcasses of the children of Israel before their idols.”
  • Ezek 8:14-15: Women were sitting weeping for Tammuz. Then God said to me, “See that? You will see still greater abominations than that.”
  • Ezek 9:4-6: A plan to kill everyone in a city, young & old, unless they “sigh and groan over all the abominations that are committed in it.”
  • Ezek 9:7 God says, “Defile the house, and fill the courts with the slain. Go!”
  • Ezek 13:10 “They lead my people astray saying “Peace” when there is no peace, and when a flimsy wall is built they cover it with whitewash.”
  • Ezek 16:1-14: God imagines Jerusalem to a beautiful woman, and tells her about how nice he was to her.
  • Ezek 16:15 “But you trusted in your beauty, and played the whore because of your fame, and lavished your whorings on any passer-by.”
  • Ezek 16:16 “You took some of your garments, and made for yourself colorful shrines, and on them played the whore.”
  • Ezek 16:17 God says: You took the gold and silver I gave you, “and made for yourself male images, and with them played the whore.”
  • Ezek 16:25 “At the head of every street you built your lofty place and prostituted your beauty, offering yourself to every passer-by.”
  • Ezek 16:26 “You played the whore with the Egyptians, your lustful neighbors, multiplying your whoring, to provoke me to anger.”
  • Ezek 16:28 “You played the whore with the Assyrians, because you were insatiable.”
  • Ezek 16:29 “You multiplied your whoring with Chaldea, the land of merchants; and even with this you were not satisfied.”
  • Ezek 16:33 “Gifts are given to all whores; but you gave gifts to all your lovers, bribing them to come to you from all around.”
  • Memo to Ezekiel: if a woman pays men to have sex with her, she’s not the prostitute.
  • Ezek 16:34 “No one solicited you to play the whore; and you gave payment, while no payment was given to you; you were different.”
  • Ezekiel keeps using that word, I do not think it means what he thinks it means.
  • (Though I admit it’s possible the Hebrew word meant something different.)
  • Ezek 16:37 God says: I will gather all your lovers together, and “uncover your nakedness to them.”
  • Okay… I’m going to have to tweet through this misogynistic garbage in Ezekiel really slowly, I can’t stomach it all at once.
  • Is Ezekiel 16:37 saying, “You act slutty, you gonna get raped?” Serious question.
  • Ezek 16:39: God, to Jerusalem, who he’s been calling a whore: “I will deliver you into their hands… they shall strip you of your…
  • Ezek 16:39 (con’t) …clothes and take your beautiful objects and leave you naked and bare.”
  • Ezek 16:40 “They shall bring up a mob against you, and they shall stone you and cut you to pieces with their swords.”
  • Ezek 16:41 “They shall burn your houses and execute judgments on you in the sight of many women.”
  • Ezek 16:49 “This was the guilt of your sister Sodom: she had pride, excess of food, and prosperous ease, but did not aid the poor and needy”
  • Ezek 20:21-22: God was going to “pour out his wrath” on the Jews, but he decided not to to avoid “profaning his name” among other nations.
  • Ezek 20:25 “I gave them statutes that were not good and ordinances by which they could not live.”
  • Ezek 20:26 “I defiled them… in their offering up all their firstborn, so that I might horrify them, & that they might know I am the Lord.”
  • Ezek 23:1-2: God starts telling us about two sisters.
  • Ezek 23:3: “They played the whore in Egypt in their youth; their breasts were caressed there, and their virgin bosoms were fondled.”
  • Ezek 23:4-5 Oholah (the older sister) “played the whore while she was mine; she lusted after her lovers the Assyrians.”
  • Ezek 23:9-10: God delivers Oholah into the hands of the Assyrians, who “uncover her nakedness,” seize her children, and kill her.
  • Ezekiel 23: Now returning to the tale of the whore sisters.
  • Ezek 23:11 “Her sister Oholibah saw this, yet she was more corrupt than her sister in her lusting and in her whorings.”
  • Ezek 23:13-16: She saw pictures of Babylonians, and lusted after them, and sent them messages.
  • Ezek 23:17 “And the Babylonians came, and they defiled her with their lust; and then she turned from them in disgust.”
  • Ezek 23:18 “When she carried on her whorings so openly and flaunted her nakedness, I turned in disgust from her.”
  • Ezek 23:19: Yet she increased her whorings, remembering the days of her youth, when she played the whore in the land of Egypt.
  • Ezek 23:20 “and lusted after her paramours there, whose members were like those of donkeys, and whose emission was like that of stallions.”
  • Ezek 23:25: What God will do to the 2nd whore sister: make her lovers cut off her nose and ears, and take her children from her.
  • Ezek 23 make also imply the 2nd sister will be raped too, it’s not clear.
  • Ezek 23:34: God tells the second sister she will tear out her own breasts.
  • I just reread all my tweets from Isaiah through Ezekiel. Makes me want to curl up in a ball and cry.
  • I mean, four Biblical books in a row with references to God making people eat their own family members? Christ.
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