Strachan: Divine Judgment

“The conquest of the promised land is righteous and God-ordained. In the Old and New Testaments, the Scripture never encourages or asks us to apologize for the exercise of divine judgment against sin and sinners. The Christian, then, is not on his heels with regard to the Canaanite conquest or other such texts; the Christian, in fact, must never accept the lie that a God who judges evil is a God we cannot worship. The text presents the opposite view: we cannot worship a God who does not oppose and overcome evil.

Surely, the matters in question are beyond the facile workings of the creaturely mind, as all the things of God are; we boggle at the reality of divine judgment, and we feel tremendous sorrow when we hear of image-bearers who choose self-destruction—and eternal torment—over the good paths of God’s righteousness. We read of the wicked nations and people groups of the Old Testament, and we shake our heads at their choice of antiwisdom over divine truth. As we do so, we confess freely that whatever God does is right. This confession, however, does not scrub away our horror at what sinful humanity perpetually chooses to do instead of obeying God.”

-Owen Strachan, Reenchanting Humanity: A Theology of Mankind, 223.

The Canaanites, for example, practiced the following and sought to entice Israelites to do the same (with amen tragic success in the old covenant eta): incestuous marriages between brothers and sisters, homosexuality, bestiality (in Egypt women cohabitated with goats), and child sacrifice.

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