By Michael Prior
The biblical declare of the divine promise of land is integrally associated with a divine mandate to exterminate the indigenous humans. The narrative has supported nearly all Western colonizing firms (e.g. in Latin the United States, South Africa, Palestine), leading to the soreness of hundreds of thousands of individuals, and lack of appreciate for the Bible. in accordance with smooth secular criteria of human and political rights, what the biblical narrative demands are war-crimes and crimes opposed to humanity. during this provocative and compelling learn, earlier protests on the forget of the ethical query in traditional bible study, and makes an attempt to rescue the Bible from being a blunt software within the oppression of individuals.
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Additional info for The Bible and Colonialism: A Moral Critique
1-2). But the inhabitants of Gibeon, due to their cunning and deceit, were, in virtue of a treaty, to be spared the conditions of the ban (herem). They were destined to become 'hewers of wood and drawers of water for all the congregation' (Josh. 21, 23, 27). The elders complained at this lapse in fidelity to the mandate to destroy all the inhabitants of the land (Josh. 24). The next two chapters give details of the shift in the theatre of marauding. Chapter 10 describes the campaign in the south, and ch.
Ostensibly, this was to facilitate the work of evangelization, but in reality it was aimed at ensuring that the whites could have their land. 2 Harrison traces present day inequality to the primordial injustice of the European invasion (1993: 108). Millions of Indians died in warfare, and of disease and overwork, so that the colonists were obliged to bring slaves from Africa to make up for the shortfall of labour. While there was some debate about the morality of making Indians slaves, there was no debate, legal or theological, about the propriety of doing so for black Africans.
However, neither in Jeremiah nor Ezekiel is there specific reference to the land having been conquered by Joshua and the Judges. 4 Moreover, there are no clear allusions to the conquest and settlement traditions in Isaiah 40-55 or in the post-exilic prophets. It is remarkable that, with the exception of their importance within the deuteronomistic traditions, the conquest and settlement traditions occupy such an insignificant place within the Bible (see Bartlett 1990: 55). 5 Let us consider now how the biblical texts at face value have been exploited in favour of colonial enterprises.