Posts Tagged ‘genesis’

The Moral Lessons of Genesis

April 24, 2013 2 comments

by Noah Lugeons

I don’t say it often, but it turns out that those Christians are right.  As an atheist, I’ve had this whole morality thing ass-backwards from the start.  Luckily I’m reading their divinely-inspired ethical guide, though, so I’ll be able to correct my misguided notions.  up until now, I’ve seen “morality” as a communal effort to decrease suffering while increasing happiness, but it turns out that none of that really matters.  From what I’ve gathered in the first book of the bible, the keys to being a good person can be summed up with the following moral edicts:

  1. Don’t cover your nakedness.
  2. Cover your nakedness.
  3. Don’t see your dad’s cock, even if it’s by accident.
  4. God loves a deceitful liar.  Just ask Abraham and Jacob.
  5. Ass-raping angels = bad.  Offering your daughters to mobs of angry rapists = good.
  6. If you meet God, throw down some Brazilian Ju-Jitsu on his ass.
  7. God made your penis wrong.
  8. When your brothers sell you into slavery and fake your death, you should probably forgive them.
  9. God promised earth to the Jews.
  10. Traditional marriage = A man, his wives and their maids.

I’m sure there will be moral messages that are every bit as surprising as we go forward, so I’ll try to keep all my godless brothers and sisters up to date.  On second thought, just my godless brothers.  I’m pretty sure I’ll learn later that teaching things to women-folk is immoral, too.


Live Blogging the Bible, Genesis 47

April 23, 2013 1 comment

by Noah Lugeons

Genesis starts slow and it’s a pretty brutal read, but as it turns out, the third act is pretty good.  It settles down into a cohesive narrative, things that are introduced to the story have relevance later, characters have depth and story arc and for a while there God bows out of things and stops being a dick.  In fact, as I was polishing off the end of Genesis, I actually found myself quite drawn to Joseph.  I thought I’d finally found a moral character in the Bible that I could get behind.  And then I reached chapter 47.

For those who don’t know the story (it’s the Technocolor Dreamcoat one), Joseph is one of Jacob’s (Israel’s) sons and he’s daddy’s favorite.  So his other 11 brothers (dad was a hound) did what any group of sociopathic jealous siblings would do.  They took him to the middle of nowhere, stuck him in a pit and waied for some Egyptians to come by so they could sell him into slavery.  They tell dad he was eaten by wolves or bears or something and they carry on with their lives.

Joseph makes the most of slavery but refuses to bone his master’s wife, which lands him in jail for a few years where his powers of dream-interpretation eventually catch the attention of Pharaoh, whose been having some pretty wacky sleepy-time romps of late.  So he brings Joseph out of prison and tells him about his dream, which Joey interprets as God warning him about a coming famine.

Pharaoh is so impressed that he basically makes Joseph king of everybody but him.  Joseph sets out to store a shitload of grain for the coming famine and sure enough, a few years later the famine settles in and thanks to Joey’s powers of precognition, Egypt is the only kingdom with any food.

Along the way he forgives his brothers, sends for his dad and hooks them up with the best grazing land in Egypt.  Seems like a pretty upstanding dude up to this point.  But then in chapter 47 he convinces all the Egyptians to sell themselves as slaves because otherwise they’ll starve.

It’s this surprisingly morbid aside in an otherwise uplifting story, but as the years of famine pile up, the peasants run out of money and can’t afford to buy food from Joseph anymore.  So he convinces them to give him all their livestock and gives them enough grain to survive the year.  Then they come back the next year with no money, no more food and no livestock, so he convinces them to give them all their land for another year’s worth of food.  Then, of course, they come back the next year with no money, no food, no livestock and nowhere to freaking live, so he convinces them to sell themselves into slavery in exchange for another year’s worth of food.

Ultimately it’s clearly a story meant to justify an excessive tax laid upon the people of Egypt, but it really takes you out of this otherwise heart-warming tale of forgiveness and foresight.  So far I’d say Joseph is the most moral central character in the bible, but if I can say that about somebody who locks up all the food and then demands you sell him your freewill if  you want some, this book is clearly unfit as a moral guide.

Live Blogging the Bible, Genesis 12:12-20

April 19, 2013 Leave a comment

by Noah Lugeons

So this Abram (cum Abraham) is a morally dubious motherfucker, which is clear pretty early on.  When we meet the guy, he’s almost immediately whoring his wife off to the Pharaoh.  A famine falls upon the land and he has to have this uncomfortable conversation with his wife:

“Hey baby, I know you’re smoking hot and anybody who sees you is gonna want to fuck you, even if they have to kill me to do it.”

“Well, thanks… kind of,” Sarai says back.

“Now, we could not go to Egypt, for sure, and if we don’t nobody will kill me to fuck you,” he added.

“Yes,” Sarai said hopefully, “let’s do that.”

But Abram had other plans, you see.  “Well, yeah, we could.  But I bet there’s another way to go about this where we get donkeys and shit.”

“Do you get killed?” she asked hopefully.


“Do I get fucked?” she asked, equally hopefully.

“Well, yeah.”

He then proceeds to whore her off to the Pharaoh for some sheep, oxen, male donkeys, male and female slaves, female donkeys and camels.  Note that they don’t specify the genders on the sheep, oxen or camels, but they make sure to tell you that Abraham got enough donkeys to make more.

And what does god do about the whole “pretend-my-wife-is-my-sister-so-I-can-whore-her-off-for-livestock” charade?  He punishes the poor Pharaoh who gave up donkeys of multiple genders for a barren, married prostitute.

This is a really fucked up book.

Live Blogging the Bible, Genesis 4:24

April 18, 2013 Leave a comment

by Noah Lugeons

So I’m reading the bible for this Holy Babble segment we’re doing on the show and I figured as I was reading I’d toss a few of my random thoughts out.  These’ll probably be short posts where I reflect on something that I probably won’t have time to mention on the show.

My first such reflection comes in the 4th chapter of Genesis.  We’re right in the middle of a “who-fucked-who” list (of which Genesis seems to have plenty) and suddenly my boy Lamech shows up out of nowhere with bloody hands and a crazed look in his eye.  This homicidal polygamist gathers his wives together and says:

Adah and Zillah (his wives, banging chicks from A-Z, this boy was), hear my voice (what the hell else would they hear?);

You wives of Lamech, listen to what I say: (the Bible likes to repeat itself)

I have killed a man for wounding me, a young man for striking me.

If Cain is avenged sevenfold, truly Lamech seventy-seven fold”

And then we’re back to fuck-lists.  This just pops up out of nowhere and as near as I can tell, it’s not setting up something else.  So basically Lamech just shows up in the middle of the bible to tell everybody what a bad ass he is.  I can’t help but think of him in the room while the scribes were writing it going, “Put in a part where I’m a badass.  At least ten times… no eleven times more badass than Cain!”

So that was weird.  Anyway, back to bible study.

God’s brother Mikey

by Noah Lugeons

Not many people know the story of Mikey. The less ambitious of the two brothers, Mikey was gifted with the same omnipotence as Jehovah but found himself less inclined to direct it in any meaningful way.

On the first day, Mikey was playing a video game. His omniscience had already seen all the video game consoles that the future had to offer and despite the vastly superior graphics of later systems, he still preferred the old school gameplay of the Nintendo Entertainment System. At the time that God interrupted, he was playing Ghosts and Goblins, a game that required omnipotence to beat.

“What the fuck is that?!” Mikey asked, shielding his eyes as the door swung open.

“I call it light,” Jehovah said excitedly, “I’ve got a whole plan… heavens, seas, animals… it’s gonna be crazy.”

Mikey reluctantly paused his game and followed his brother outside. A pair of sunglasses (the first pair, to be exact) phenomenized in his hands and he donned them as he glanced up at God’s creation.  “Whatever,” he said dismissively, “I’m going to bed.”

On the following morning, Mikey awoke violently as water splashed onto his face. “Now what?!” he grumbled as he stormed outside through knee-deep liquid. “What the fuck are you doing?” he called out as he swung open the door.

“I call it water. Don’t worry,” God said with a passive wave, “I’m going to create solid ground next.”

“Well can you hurry the hell up? It’s kinda hard to sleep with all this churning and rolling.”

“Yeah, I should be done with the ground tomorrow sometime.”

“Tomorrow! Why tomorrow?”

God waved his arms in a sweeping gesture, as though to convey the enormity of the project at hand. “I promise… I’ll get to it as soon as I can. I’m still separating all these seas.”

Mikey rolled his eyes and a canoe (the first canoe, to be exact) phenomenized before him as he made his way back to his bed. He tried creating a stable platform on which to sleep, but it churned with the waters and he was ripped back to consciousness each time a splash of the cold liquid splattered onto his skin. He tried a few more constructs before eventually settling on a large enclosed space that would roll comfortably amongst the new waves.

He slept through the day and awoke on the following morning with his enclosed structure blissfully beached on steady ground. He stretched and a cup of coffee appeared in his throat. He considered seeing how Jehovah was doing, but he almost feared whatever monstrosity might await him outside so he remained inside his boat and played a few games of Mario Kart. Later he phenomenized a pizza and a bong and before he knew it, he was asleep again.

On the fourth day he finally came forth from his protective encapsulation. He stepped on to the upper deck of his refuge and glanced down. “Yo, Joey!” he said, calling to his brother.

“My name’s Jehovah,” he muttered.

“Digging that big orange ball of flame… it’s nice. I’d have put it a little higher up, but hey, that’s just me.”

“It actually rises and falls back over on that side. It moves kind of slow. I’m trying to get it to exactly 24 hours but it’s a pain in the ass.”

“How close are you?”

“I’m within a minute.”

Mikey shrugged. “Close enough.”

That was often Mikey’s solution to a conundrum, but God decided that in this instance he was probably right. “I like your ark,” he remarked as he took in his brother’s improvised shelter. “I’ll have to keep that in mind.”

“Loving what you did with the sky, little bro,” he said as he climbed down from his perch. By the time he reached the sandy shores a beer had appeared in his hand. “Little white patches floating by… nice touch.”

“Clouds, I call ’em. You should see it at night. I did stars and everything.”

“Nice,” he said as he cracked open the beer. “So what are you planning with this whole thing?”

God smiled and Mikey could tell by his expression that his brother had been dying to lay the plan out since this whole thing started. It had taken a few days for Mikey to take the bait and he could tell immediately he was in for a long story. He phenomenized a chair and sat back as he drank.

“Well… I still gotta finish the moon, but then the next couple days I’m working on animals.”

“What the fuck are animals?”

“Little living, sentient things that’ll eat each other and compete for limited resources. It’ll be fun to watch.”

Mikey wrinkled his nose. “Sounds like a pain in the ass. Are you gonna take care of all those things? You know… take ’em for walks and stuff?”

“Nope. They’re on their own in a cruel world, bro. But hold on, I haven’t told you the…”

“Wait… a cruel world? Why would you create a cruel world?”

“Cruelty will act as a lesson about the vastness of my power. I’ll creating suffering so that they can enjoy bounty in its absence.”

“That doesn’t make a lick of sense.”

“No… it does. See, you can’t have good without evil.”

“Yes you can,” Mikey said, finishing the last swallow from his beer, “You’re omnipotent, remember? You can have anything you want.”

“Anyway, don’t worry about it. That’s not even the best part. I haven’t told you about ‘man’ yet.”

Mikey caused his sunglasses to reappear just so that he could slide them down his nose and glance skeptically from behind them. “What are mans?”


“Okay, what are mens?”

“No, man, but when you pluralize it, you say ‘men’.”

“See, that doesn’t make any sense either.”

“I work in mysterious ways, Mikey.”

“Whatever… fine. So what are ‘men’?” he asked, forcing an overly sarcastic emphasis onto the word.

“Okay… this is so cool… They’ll be like little versions of us. My own image and everything. And I’ll give them free will and I’ll stick them in a garden paradise…”

“Well that’s nice of you…” Mikey started, but Jehovah wasn’t finished and simply spoke over him.

“… but I’ll put a tree in there with really delicious fruit on it and I’ll tell them not to eat it and when they do… and you know they will… anyway, when they do, I’ll curse them for all of eternity.”

Mikey offered only a glacial blink.

“And then I’ll fuck with ’em for a few centuries and totally remove myself from their world. And if they don’t believe I exist after that, I’ll condemn them to spend eternity burning in a fiery pit.”

“What’s a fiery pit?”

“It’s something I’m going to create just to be a miserable ass place to spend eternity in.”

A long moment passed as Mikey tried to absorb all this information. Several times he started to speak and then realized he lacked sufficient words to express his disbelief. He looked into his brother’s eyes and saw the hint of madness he’d always suspected was there.

Finally, he responded with a single syllable, the only syllable that seemed remotely appropriate under the circumstances: “Why?”

“Because I want them to see how awesome I am,” he answered with a straight face. “They’ll love me or they’ll burn in hell in an unending orgy of tragic pain for all of time. It’ll be great!

“Dude… you’ve lost your fucking mind. I’m sorry to just lay it out there like that, but you’re fucking crazy. That’s the weirdest shit I’ve ever heard. Seriously… I should create mental asylums just so I could lock you in one.”

“Go ahead. See if you ever figure out how the tides work, dick.”

God turned his back on his brother and Mikey retreated to his ark to play some more video games. It would be centuries before he came out again and by then, his brother had so irrevocably fucked up his experiment that he’d simply given up on it and moved on to a new project.

Mikey shrugged and went back inside to play some Gears of War.

Thus ends the gospel of Mikey.