Divine genocides and Biblical inerrancy

The moral problem of Genocide within the Bible

The presence of apparently genocidal texts within the Bible (where God allegedly ordered soldiers not to spare children) is arguably one of the strongest challenges faced by Conservative Evangelicals who believe that the writers of the Bible never made any mistake with respect to everything they wanted to convey.

Difficult moral issues: the genocide of the Canaanites.  On the picture, shouting bearded men are fighting and swinging their swords.
Moral problem for Biblical inerrantists: the genocide of the Canaanites.

I already went into the problem while responding to an email from an atheist.

Peter Enns besides his book: the Bible tells me so: why defending Scripture has made us unable to read it.
Progressive Evangelical theologian Peter Enns.

Recently, progressive Evangelical theologian Peter Enns started out critically examining a new Conservative Evangelical book (“Did God Really Command Genocide?: Coming to Terms with the Justice of God” by Paul Copan and Matt Flannagan) aiming at alleviating the moral tensions caused by the problematic texts.

Book available on Amazon: Did God Really Command Genocide?: Coming to Terms with the Justice of God
Copan and Flannagan:
Did God Really Command Genocide?: Coming to Terms with the Justice of God.

Here is my response to his post which is really worth reading.

Conservative Evangelical apologetics defending Biblical inerrancy

I once interviewed Matt Flannagan himself about his views on the conquest of Canaan.

Matt Flannagan with a neutral facial expression.
Evangelical apologist Matt Flannagan.

I must say I largely prefer his approach to that of William Lane Craig who defends the killing of babies by untrained soldiers as perfectly moral (while he is passionately opposed to such an act if it is committed against a yet unborn child by a trained physician).
To his credit, Craig does recognize it is an option for Christians disagreeing with him on that to reject Biblical inerrancy. This is a point almost no Conservative Evangelical grants.
Here, I can only mention Randal Rauser’s excellent criticism of his arguments.

In a sense, this is a real pity. Craig is an extremely brilliant man. While I don’t think he’s ultimately successful in proving Christianity, I think he is by no means inferior to sophisticated defenders of atheism out there.

He’s also a kind person and tend to be a very agreeable and respectful conversation partner.

William Lane Craig with a nice suit and a charming smile.
William Lane Craig, leading Evangelical apologist.

So it is truly disappointing he holds such indefensible views owing to his belief in Biblical inerrancy.
He gives anti-theists powerful rhetorical ammunitions for refusing to take seriously anything he has to say.

When the Bible is at odds with facts from the external world, Conservative apologetics fall into two categories:
– fundamentalism: denying the facts and clinging to the literal interpretation of Scripture (as typically Young Earth Creationists do)
– concordism: accepting the reliability of the external facts and trying to find an interpretation of the Bible matching them (as typically progressive creationists do).

With respect to this specific question, Craig has chosen a fundamentalist approach.
The apologetic strategy of Copan and Flanaggan is more in line with our basic moral intuitions and as such they can be regarded as concordists.

I generally think that concordists are successful for SOME moral difficulties found within Scripture whereby they offer a plausible alternative interpretation no longer strongly offensive to our fundamental ethical intuitions.

Atrocities in the text and some very implausible assumptions

But there are countless other “Biblical difficulties” and oftentimes I cannot help but think that their interpretation of the text is far-fetched and certainly not in accordance with what the original authors meant.

While reading Deuteronomy 20 explicating the difference between war inside and outside Canaan:

“When you draw near to a town to fight against it, offer it terms of peace. If it accepts your terms of peace and surrenders to you, then all the people in it shall serve you at forced labour. If it does not submit to you peacefully, but makes war against you, then you shall besiege it; and when the LORD your God gives it into your hand, you shall put all its males to the sword. You may, however, take as your booty the women, the children, livestock, and everything else in the town, all its spoil. You may enjoy the spoil of your enemies, which the LORD your God has given you. Thus you shall treat all the towns that are very far from you, which are not towns of the nations here.
(first part).

“But as for the towns of these peoples that the LORD your God is giving you as an inheritance, you must not let anything that breathes remain alive. You shall annihilate them—the Hittites and the Amorites, the Canaanites and the Perizzites, the Hivites and the Jebusites—just as the LORD your God has commanded, so that they may not teach you to do all the abhorrent things that they do for their gods, and you thus sin against the LORD your God.”
(Second part)

Deuteronomy 20: mighty Isrealite riders are ready for genocidal assaults.
Atrocities in Deuteronomy 20?

it seems extremely likely that the Biblical author wanted to convey the idea of literal killings in both cases

Or consider the war against the Midianate:

“Moses said to them, “Have you allowed all the women to live? These women here, on Balaam’s advice, made the Israelites act treacherously against the LORD in the affair of Peor, so that the plague came among the congregation of the LORD. Now therefore, kill every male among the little ones, and kill every woman who has known a man by sleeping with him. But all the young girls who have not known a man by sleeping with him, keep alive for yourselves.”

Women are being seized by men against their will.
(Virgin) women as war booty.

It is very plausible (if not almost certain) that Mose (according to the authors of the book of Numbers) wanted his men to kill male infants, married women and widows while taking virgin girls as war booty .

It seems extraordinarily hard to avoid the conclusion that the Biblical authors attributed barbaric commands to God.

Conservative Evangelicals having troubles

Coupled with all examples of scientific and historical inaccuracies in the Bible, it appears that the Chicago Statement of inerrancy (the Biblical writers never erred in what they wanted to convey) can only be salvaged by resorting to a flurry of extremely unlikely ad-hoc hypotheses and distortions of the text.

This is why I think that the Conservative Evangelical faith has an incredibly shaky foundation which can be all too easily shattered once one begins to honestly read and examine the Biblical texts.

Among all these seeds of doubt, the description of God as an immoral being seems to be the main factor leading young Evangelicals to give up Christianity altogether, as an email to which I responded illustrates.

Antitheism as a legitimate child of religious fundamentalism

As a consequence, we get plenty of angry anti-theists who view the Bible as an entirely wicked book which should be burnt.

They have kept a fundamentalist mindset in so far as they think that:

1) the Bible should be judged in every respect according to modern criteria (thereby disregarding the strong influence of history and culture on moral beliefs)
2) the Bible is always entirely consistent in relation to its moral message.
Thus, if we can show that in one book soldiers are ordered to slaughter children, we must conclude that the WHOLE Bible endorses and advocates infanticides.

Over 90% of those who identify themselves as "Christian" admit they have never read the entire Bible...which ironically is the way you become an atheist.
How fundamentalism produces antitheism.

Far from protecting the Church, Conservative Evangelicalism is causing a mass desertion which could be avoided.

Progressive Christianity means embracing uncertainty.

On a personal level, the results of historical-critical scholarship have led me to give up the concept of a divine Canon set apart and more inspired than other books outside of it.

Frankly speaking, there is no meaningful way in which we could say that the imprecatory psalms (where a man prays for the atrocious death of the children of his enemy) is more inspired that sermons of Martin Luther King or books of C.S. Lewis (who by the way recognized the existence of errors within the Bible).

If one reads the Bible as a collection of book reporting the experiences and thoughts of people concerning God (i.e. in the same way one reads other Christians and Jewish books including apocryphal books in the Bible), many moral problems disappear completely.

I can even find moral beauty in many texts which fall short of perfection.

Of course, Evangelicals find my approach terribly unsettling because they’ve been raised to think that a Bible free of mistakes is the only way we have for knowing how God truly is .

There is no easy answer I can give them. I think that by definition, God has to be morally perfect and therefore higher than the most noble person who has ever lived under the sun.
For me, being a Christian means hoping in a God who revealed his ultimate face through the life, death and resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth.

I find Hans Küng’s book “Christianity”  (which I originally read in German) excellent and think that he did a very good job showing that ultimate worldview commitments (including the contrast between hope and despair, nihilism and meaning, atheism and theism, Christianity and non-Christian religions) involve choices which go far beyond what is warranted by the evidence and rational considerations.

Hans Küng. Christianity: essence, history and future.
Hans Küng: Apologist for progressive Christianity.

So I view faith as existential hope in the face of uncertainty and think that religious fundamentalists and Conservatives should come to terms with the fact that our ambiguous world hasn’t anything better to offer.

Do lower classes vote against their own interests?

I recently stumbled across a thought-provoking picture I want to comment on.

Why poor and middle class Republicans vote against their own interest.   "If you can convince the lowest white man he's better than the best colored man, he won't notice you're picking his pocket.  Hell, give him someone to look down on and he'll empty his pockets for you."  Lyndon Johnson.
Poor Republicans voting against their interests?

I have mixed feelings here.

The landscape of racism has changed

On the one hand, I think that one cannot apply this quote straightforwardly to modern America (let alone to the modern Western world as a whole).

Luckily, horrendous discriminations against black people sanctioned by the law belong to the past. The large majority of modern-day Republicans believe in racial equality and the racist demagogy Johnson rightly decried isn’t very likely to be found nowadays.

There is no denial that black people are still suffering from revolting injustices, such as the consequences of the war on drug. But politicians demeaning them for getting white votes have obviously become much rarer.

In the modern Western World (at least in France and to a much more limited extent in Germany) one can clearly see the existence of an anti-white racism I have partially documented here.

There is a dangerous imbalance here: while racism against blacks and Arabs is (rightly!) as severely combated as it must be, anti-white racism is almost always swept under the carpet. This situation is one of the reasons why the fascist party “Front National” is progressively becoming the first political power of France. This can only foster a vicious circle of hatred.

This is why I consider it absolutely necessary to take all racisms seriously and combat them in the same manner.

The fact that white slave holders have committed atrocities during the course of history gives no justification whatsoever for bullying a young white boy in a schoolyard just because he appears to have the same skin color.

Many Western liberals (I prefer to call them Slaves of Political Correctness (SPC)  ) are upholding the myth that white males can only be oppressors and never be oppressed by other groups.

This refusal to face reality promotes extremism and creates an explosive situation which has already taken a dramatic shape in France.

Even if this makes me extremely unpopular, I must urge my fellow progressives to become real impartial enemies of injustice wherever it is found.

Poverty in America and political manipulation

10 things you should know about poverty in America.   1) 15.1 percent of population 2) Increase of 20% since 1962 3) Economic growth doesn't fix poverty. 4) American in deep poverty.
Poverty in America

On the other hand, I think that Johnson is completely right that the lower classes (and actually even the middle classes) are manipulated in Western democracies, especially America.

It is obvious that  the lack of social protection and unconditional access to healthcare goes against their interest.

As I pointed out in my last post, the idea that an invisible hand automatically takes care of everything is a wicked myth.

Self-interest + competition = invisible hand
The Invisible hand at work.

At most, such a process can only ensure the survival of wild capitalism which solely blesses a small wealthy minority.

Poor people who are voting for proponents of unlimited capitalism compound their misery in one of the worst ways one could imagine.

As a Christian, it sickens me to see the Christian Right misusing religion for upholding revolting inequalities.

In that respect, they fulfill Karl Marx’s verdict that religion is the “opium of the folk”.

Fortunately, it does not need to be.

At Patheos progressive Christian, Fred Clark did a great job debunking one of their favorite verses used for arguing against a charitable and compassionate State.

If we are sincerely concerned about justice, love and the suffering of innocents, we ought to reject political and economical structures leading to inhumanity.

I think there is overwhelming evidence that a society where the fight against poverty is limited to personal private donations is a fiery hell for the needy.

We need judicial laws instead of anarchy because we cannot count on all or  even most people freely choosing to avoid evil.

Likewise, we need laws protecting the poor instead of economical anarchy because we cannot expect a sufficient number of wealthy people to make donations large enough for meeting the needs of all of those suffering from poverty.

While I myself reject the concept of inherited sinful nature taught by Western Christianity, I think that the second point should be obvious to anyone believing that every human being is wicked from his birth on.

Austerity or how to screw both the economy and the poor

 

 

While discussing with (economically) right-wing people, some of them confess to me that free-market capitalism without any State intervention can be quite detrimental to the life standards of the lower classes.

I commented on a tragic consequence of this which happened in Britain not long ago.

But they then go on saying that the alternative (the State stepping in to protect the welfare of people) is practically impossible because it allegedly leads to a collapse or a significant weakening of the economy. And this in turn would naturally also have dire repercussions on these poor people.

They then argue that laissez-faire capitalism is the best system for allowing mankind to flourish because any stronger regulations inevitably undermine the financial health of the country.

In spite of their natural selfishness and rapacity, business people are led by an invisible hand and thus without intending it, advance the interest of the society
Adam Smith: self-interest takes care of everything.

So according to this doctrine, an “invisible hand” emerging out of the actions of numerous selfish agents ends up producing the most optimal world given human nature.

Self-interest + competition = invisible hand
The Invisible hand at work.

That sounds really great (albeit saddening) in theory.

But how does that work out in practice?

British Chancellor of Exchequer George Osborne provides us with a nice counter-example.

We're going to continue to squeeze public spending well into the future, with cut after cut, even if we do meet our deficit.  Austerity for ever!
Austerity according to Osborne (or his detractors).

Comparisons with his more interventionist predecessors don’t look too flattering.

George Osborne has created more debt in four years than every single government in history combined...So why do so many people still rate the Tories as the most economically trustworthy party?
Osborne overcoming the debt?

I personally strongly doubt that Wild Capitalism (the economy takes care of everything) prevails because it is the best system for us all.

I think that it dominates our world because it creates the best conditions for a SMALL wealthy minority which holds humanity in its grip through oligarchical structures and an efficient manipulation of public opinion.

In a previous post, I have laid out the bases of Christian socialism. Regardless of your own worldview, if you sincerely care for justice and alleviating human suffering, I think you should start thinking more critically on the moral virtues of a world driven by the callous forces of stock market.

The fact that former communist dictatorships have atrociously failed  gives us absolutely no reason to think that people would not be much better off with a moderate Capitalism where the State intervenes to protect the well-being of defenseless people whenever they are threatened by the impersonal forces of trade.

Thematic list of ALL posts on this blog (regularly updated)

My other blog on Unidentified Aerial Phenomena (UAP)

On pseudo-skepticism, Foo-Fighters, and St. Elmo’s fire

On my parallel blog dealing with unidentified aerial phenomena (UAP), I have begun investigating Foo-Fighters, which were puzzling objects flying around military planes during World War II.

https://i1.wp.com/www.classifiedufo.com/uploads/6/9/7/5/6975848/6332552.jpg

(Photo only used as an illustration).

I have examined a potential explanation known as “St. Elmo’s fire”.

https://i1.wp.com/www.pilotenbilder.de/photos/data/media/61/Elmsfeuer.jpg

I ended up debunking a pseudo-skeptic there.

I think that Christians interested in the investigation of miracles or paranormal events might be interested in taking a look at my post.

Thematic list of ALL posts on this blog (regularly updated)

My other blog on Unidentified Aerial Phenomena (UAP)

Are miracles improbable natural events?

Deutsche Version: Sind Wunder unwahrscheinliche Naturereignisse?

Stefan Hartmann is one of the most prominent scholars who deal with the philosophy of probability.

In an interview for the university of Munich, he went into a well-known faith story of the Old Testament in order to illustrate some concepts in a provoking way.

*****

 Interviewer: let us start at the very beginning in the Old Testament. In the Book of Genesis, God reveals to hundred-years old Abraham that he’d become father. Why shall Abraham believe this?

 
Hartmann: if we get a new information and wonder how we should integrate it into our belief system, we start out analysing it according to different criteria.
Three of them are especially important: the initial plausibility of the new information, the coherence of the new information and the reliability of the information source.
These factors often point towards the same direction, but sometimes there are tensions. Like in this example.
We have to do with a highly reliable source, namely God who always says the Truth.
However, the information itself is very implausible, hundred-years old people don’t get children. And it is incoherent: becoming a father at the age of hundred doesn’t match our belief system.
Now we have to weigh out all these considerations and come to a decision about whether or not we should take this information in to our belief system. When God speaks, we are left with no choice but to do that. But if anyone else were to come up with this information, we’d presumably not do it, because the missing coherence and the lacking plausibility would be overwhelming.
The problem for epistemology consists of how to weigh out these three factors against each other.

*****

It must be clearly emphasised that neither the interviewer nor Hartmann believe in the historicity of this story between God and Abraham. It is only used as an illustration for epistemological (i.e. knowledge-related) problems.

As a progressive Christian, I consider that this written tradition has shown up rather late so that its historical foundations are uncertain.

Still, from the standpoint of the philosophy of religion it represents a vital text and lies at the very core of the “leap of faith” of Danish philosopher Søren Kierkegaard.

For that reason, I want to go into Hartmann’s interpretation for I believe that it illustrates a widespread misunderstanding among modern intellectuals.

I am concerned with the following sentence I underscored:

However, the information itself is very implausible, hundred-years old people don’t get children. And it is incoherent: becoming a father at the age of hundred doesn’t match our belief system.

According to Hartmann’s explanation, it looks like as if the Lord had told to Abraham: “Soon you’ll get a kid in a wholly natural way.”

And in that case I can figure out why there would be a logical conflict.

But this isn’t what we find in the original narrative:

Background knowledge: hundred years old people don’t get children in a natural way.

New information:a mighty supernatural being promised to Abraham that he would become father through a miracle.

Put that way, there is no longer any obvious logical tension.

The “father of faith” can only conclude out of his prior experience (and that of countless other people) that such an event would be extremely unlikely under purely natural circumstances.

This doesn’t say anything about God’s abilities to bring about the promised son in another way.

Interestingly enough, one could say the same thing about advanced aliens who would make the same assertion.

The utter natural implausibility of such a birth is absolutely no argument against the possibility that superior creatures might be able to perform it.

Did ancient people believe in miracles because they didn’t understand well natural processes?

A closely related misconception consists of thinking that religious people from the past believed in miracles because their knowledge of the laws of Nature was extremely limited.

As C.S. Lewis pointed out, it is misleading to say that the first Christians believed in the virgin birth of Jesus because they didn’t know how pregnancy works.

On the contrary, they were very well aware of these states of affairs and viewed this event as God’s intervention for that very reason.

Saint Joseph would not have come to the thought of repudiating his fiancée if he hadn’t known that a pregnancy without prior sexual intercourses goes against the laws of nature.

Although professor Hartmann is doubtlessly an extremely intelligent person, I think he missed the main point.

Are we open to the existence of a God whose actions do not always correspond to the regular patterns of nature? And whose preferences might not always been understood by human reason?

 

But as progressive Evangelical theologian Randal Rauser argued, I think that the true epistemological and moral conflict only begins when God demands Abraham many years later to sacrifice his son, which overthrows very deep moral intuitions.

Like the earlier German philosopher Immanual Kant, Rauser strongly doubts that such a command is compatible with God’s perfection.

Sind Wunder unwahrscheinliche Naturereignisse?

English version: Are miracles improbable natural events?

Stefan Hartmann ist einer der herausragendsten Wissenschaftstheoretiker, die sich mit der Wahrscheinlichkeitsphilosophie beschäftigen.

In einem Interview für die Universität von München ist er auf eine hoch bekannte Glaubensgeschichte im alten Testament eingegangen, um eine provokante Illustration mancher Konzepte zu liefern.

*****

Beginnen wir ganz am Anfang, mit dem Alten Testament. Im 1. Buch Mose offenbart Gott dem schon hundertjährigen Abraham, dass er noch Vater werde. Warum soll Abraham das glauben?
Hartmann: Wenn wir neue Informationen bekommen und uns fragen, ob wir diese in
unser Glaubenssystem einbauen wollen, analysieren wir sie zuerst einmal nach verschiedenen Kriterien. Drei davon sind
besonders wichtig: die anfängliche Plausibilität der neuen Information, die Kohärenz
der neuen Information und die Zuverlässigkeit der Informationsquelle.
Oft zeigen diese Faktoren in die gleiche Richtung, manchmal gibt’s Spannungen – wie in dem Beispiel:
Wir haben es mit einer höchst zuverlässigen Quelle zu tun, mit Gott, der immer die Wahrheit sagt. Die Information aber selbst ist sehr unplausibel, Hundertjährige bekommen keine Kinder. Und sie ist sehr inkohärent: Es
passt nicht in unser sonstiges Glaubenssystem, dass ein Hundertjähriger Vater wird.
Diese Überlegungen gilt es abzuwägen und zu einem Schluss zu kommen, ob wir eine
neue Information in unser Glaubenssystem aufnehmen. Wenn Gott spricht, haben wir
keine andere Wahl, als es zu tun. Käme aber irgendein anderer mit dieser Information,
täten wir es vermutlich nicht, weil die fehlende Kohärenz und die mangelnde Plausibilität durchschlagen.
Das Problem für die Erkenntnistheorie besteht darin, die drei Faktoren zu gewichten.

*****

Es muss klar betont werden, dass keiner der Gesprächsteilnehmer an die Historizität dieser Geschichte zwischen Gott und Abraham glaubt. Vielmehr soll sie der Verdeutlichung von epistemologischen (wissensbezogenen) Problemen dienen.

Als progressiver Christ gehe ich selber davon aus, dass die Überlieferung ziemlich spät entstanden ist, sodass ihre historischen Grundlagen unsicher sind.

Dennoch stellt sie für die Religionsphilosophie einen Ankertext dar und liegt dem berühmten “Glaubenssprung” des dänischen Philosophen Søren Kierkegaard zugrunde.

Aus diesem Grund will ich selber auf Hartmanns Interpretation eingehen, denn ich glaube, dass sie weit verbreitete Missverständnisse unter modernen Intellektuellen deutlich macht.

Es geht nämlich um die von mir unterstrichenen Sätze:

“Die Information aber selbst ist sehr unplausibel, Hundertjährige bekommen keine Kinder. Und sie ist sehr inkohärent: Es
passt nicht in unser sonstiges Glaubenssystem, dass ein Hundertjähriger Vater wird.”

Gemäss Hartmanns Erläuterung sieht es so aus, als ob der Herr dem Abraham gesagt hätte “Bald wirst du auf völlig natürliche Weise durch Zufall ein Kind kriegen”. Und in diesem Fall kann ich mir wohl vorstellen, dass der von Hartmann erläuterte logische Konflikt vorliegen würde.

Aber in der ursprünglichen Erzählung sieht es tatsächlich anders aus:

Hintergrundwissen: Hundertjährige bekommen keine Kinder auf natürliche Weise.

Neue Information: Ein mächtiges übernatürliches Wesen verspricht dem Abraham, dass er ein Kind durch ein Wunder bekommen würde.

So dargestellt bestehen keine offensichtlichen logischen Spannungen mehr.

Aus seiner bisherigen Erfahrung (und der von zahllosen anderen Menschen) kann der “Vater des Glaubens” nur schliessen, dass ein solches Ereignis unter rein natürlichen Umständen äusserst unwahrscheinlich wäre.

Dies sagt aber gar nichts aus über Gottes Fähigkeiten, den ersehnten Sohn durch einen anderen Weg herbeizubringen.

Interessanterweise könnte man genau dasselbe über fortschrittliche Ausserirdischen sagen, die den selben Anspruch erheben würden. Die extreme natürliche Unplausibilität einer solchen Geburt ist gar kein Argument gegen die Möglichkeit, dass überlegene Kreaturen wohl im Stande sein könnten, dies zu vollbringen.

Glaubten Menschen der Antike an Wunder, weil sie die Naturprozesse nicht gut begriffen?

Eine eng damit zusammenhängende Fehlauffassung besteht darin, zu denken, dass wenn andere religiöse Menschen aus der Vergangenheit an Wunder glaubten, sie es nur deshalb taten, weil ihr Wissen über die Naturgesetze extrem unvollständig war.

Wie C.S. Lewis darauf hinwies, ist es irreführend, zu behaupten, dass die ersten Christen an die jungfräuliche Geburt von Jesus glaubten, weil sie gar nicht wussten, wie Schwangerschaft eigentlich fungiert.

Ganz im Gegenteil waren sie sich dieser Sachverhalte sehr wohl bewusst und genau deswegen legten sie  das Geschehnis als Gottes Eingriff aus. Sankt Joseph wäre nicht auf die Idee gekommen, sich von seiner Verlobte zu trennen, wenn es ihm nicht ganz klar gewesen wäre, dass eine Schwangerschaft ohne vorangegangen Geschlechtsverkehr den Gesetzen der Natur zuwider läuft.

Obwohl er zweifelsohne ein äusserst intelligenter Mensch ist, hat meiner Meinung nach Professor Hartmann die Kernproblematik verpasst.

Sind wir für die Existenz eines Gottes offen, dessen Handlungen den statistischen Regelmässigkeiten der natürlichen Ordnung nicht immer entsprechen? Und dessen Vorzüge nicht unbedingt durch unsere menschliche Vernunft nachvollziehbar sind?

Aber wie progressiver evangelikaler Theologe Randal Rauser argumentiert hat glaube ich, dass der wahre epistemologische und moralische Konflikt erst anfängt, wenn Abraham von Gott Jahre später dazu aufgefordert wird, seinen Sohn zu opfern, was tief verwurzelte moralische Intuitionen über Bord wirft.

Wie der frühere deutsche Philosoph Immanuel Kant bezweifelt Rauser sehr, dass ein solcher Befehl mit Gottes Vollkommenheit in Einklang gebracht werden kann.