Another snippet from The Bible Delusion.
God Goes Dark.
Where did the Israelite God go? The final books of the Old Testament all start with each prophet declaring that God spoke directly to him:
Zephaniah 1:1. “The word of the Lord which came unto Zephaniah the son of Cushi…”
Haggai 1:1. “In the second year of Darius the king, in the sixth month, in the first day of the month, came the word of the Lord by Haggai the prophet…”
Zechariah 1:1. In the eighth month, in the second year of Darius, came the word of the Lord unto Zechariah, the son of Berechiah, the son of Iddo the prophet, saying, The Lord hath been sore displeased with your fathers.” As ever, God is still very unhappy; there is nothing new here.
Malachi 1:1. “The burden of the word of the Lord to Israel by Malachi.”
Incidentally, Malachi’s message is to the priests. “And now, O ye priests, this commandment is for you. If ye will not hear, and if ye will not lay it to heart, to give glory unto my name, saith the Lord of hosts, I will even send a curse upon you, and I will curse your blessings: yea, I have cursed them already, because ye do not lay it to heart. Behold, I will corrupt your seed, and spread dung upon your faces…” (2-3).
Can you imagine a real God actually saying that if they won’t give glory to him, he will spread dung on their faces? Think about it – very carefully. The measure of this God has been well established throughout the OT. He has never said or done anything actually nice. I really had hoped there would at least be something of merit – but no, there is absolutely nothing.
After thirty-nine books, covering thousands of years, suddenly and without warning, God goes dark. We hear no more from him at all after 397 BCE.
A number of the High Priests at Jerusalem are known. For example, John (373 BCE); Onias (321 BCE); Simon (217 BCE); Jason (175 BCE); Hyrcanus (136 BCE); yet God didn’t say anything to any of them – or anyone else for that matter. The next we hear about God is from followers of Jesus, who wrote about him and God long after Jesus lived – not one of whom ever knew or even met Jesus.
After thousands of years of berating the Israelites with constant threats and recriminations, often killing thousands of them off and constantly sending them into captivity, in 397 BCE their God seemed to forget the Jews and leave them to their own devices. God went dark and he hasn’t spoken to the Jews since.
What happened to the God of the Jews?