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Why Did God Order His People To Destroy Other Nations?
The Atheist Manifesto and The God Delusion state God is a vindictive ethnic-cleanser of innocents to satisfy his blood-lust. Yet, history and scripture show that these nations were not innocent. God's judgement on the nations was also purposeful, not wanton bloodlust: God was making the promised land pure for Israel, warned to steer from the wicked ways of the nations. God's destruction of nations wasn’t ethnic cleansing, but justice in destroying wickedness and creating a pure land for his chosen people, Israel.
There is nothing and no one like God. He is holy, and his ways are perfect, right, and true. He is the author of the cosmic moral reality. He is the definition of true. He asks his people to not be stiff-necked and to not follow the ways of the nations. The conflicts were proof that God grants victory over enemies, if his people obey. God demands his people to follow his instruction so they can receive blessing. Whenever there is disobedience, even amongst the people of God, there is destruction. This was the perfect order and justice of a good and holy God. Anything that might tempt Israel to disobedience and destruction had to be destroyed so that he could dwell with his people. Yet, eventually Israel did spiral into disobedience and so they were exiled and did not reap the blessings of the true rest God promised.
God has always desired to be near to us and to bring justice. He gave time for the nations to repent, and those that were destroyed had completely hardened their hearts. Today, we look to Jesus who covers us in his blood, saves us, and is our refuge. One day, he too will return with the warhorse, in judgement.
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24 Oct 2016
Luke is the Lead Pastor of City on a Hill Melbourne West. He joined City on a Hill in its early days, serving as the Community Pastor in Melbourne, before being asked to lead his own church plant. Having grown up in Melbourne's western suburbs, he has a deep knowledge of and passion for the area, and a great desire to see the gospel bring transformation. A gifted communicator, he loves the work of pastoring a church, opening God's word each week and seeing the Spirit work. Luke graduated with a BA (Hons) from Melbourne University, has a Grad Dip in Divinity from Ridley College, and is close to completing a Masters of Ministry. He is an ordained Anglican minister in the Diocese of Melbourne and an active member of the Acts 29.
10 Oct 2016
Simon Angus is an Economist at Monash University, and in his spare time serves the City on a Hill Movement as the Strategy & Analysis Pastor, and Many Rooms Ltd as a Board Director. Simon is married to Susan and has 3 kids. He loves complexity and systems thinking, trail running and dreaming about the next Lego build.
Simon has qualifications in industrial chemistry, political philosophy and economics from the University of New South Wales and in Theology from Moore College.