Why the Villain of Eden was a Snake?


#1

Fantastic video analyzing this very question by a scholar. I also realized it puts down any atheistic objections such as “why did God allow a snake in Eden?” What do you think about this?


(George Brooks) #2

@Korvexius

The Persians are the one ancient people that considered killing a snake as a good deed.
As well as a fixation on angels and avoiding impurities.


(RiderOnTheClouds) #3

Are you seriously suggesting that earlier Ancient peoples didn’t consider the serpent to be a symbol of chaos?

Lotan- Ugarit

Apep- Egypt

Iluyanka- Anatolia

Typhon- Greece

Vritra- India

Just a few examples.


#4

It appears as though some considered sneaks good, some considered snakes bad. Generally Israelite culture considered them good, but the serpentine divine being of Genesis is why we view them negatively today.


(RiderOnTheClouds) #5

Michael Heiser is one of the greatest biblical scholars of our day. When I discovered his scholarship as a non-believer, it caused me to start to view the Bible in a different way. I find his works on Genesis 6 to be fascinating.


#6

His work is no doubt incredibly illuminating. He has helped us understand the Bible. That is a feat of incomparable significance. Now if YEC’s would stop building museums based off of bad exegesis. Someone should send Ken Ham a copy of Heiser’s books.


#7

Some snakes are good eat’n! Tastes like chicken but with a lot of fine bones.


(George Brooks) #8

@Reggie_O_Donoghue, all you are doing is picking examples of dreaded snakes with bad personalities. This does not provide a balanced view of the snake in the ancient world. For example, Nergal was a “solar” deity that lit the underworld. And he was the god of disease. But this does not mean solar gods were hated by the ancient world.

More Balance:

Only the Persians had a literal tradition that killing a snake was always a good thing. Presumably, the monotheism of Zoroastrianism contributed to a rather narrow view of what was good and bad. The Persians had 7 “angels” that served as divine assistants to the great and good God.

Compared to the Persians, virtually all the other ANE cultures had a more balanced respect for snakes/serpents. the Egyptians put a snake on the very crown of Egypt!

Greeks had a tradition of allowing an unescorted wagon with snakes to choose temple sites; and the Greek perspective of divine snakes heavily influenced Roman art.

The Sumerians/Assyrians/Babylonians had a great serpent God that represented Wisdom, Fertility and Immortality.


(George Brooks) #9

It would not be too much of a stretch to imagine the “snake/tree” scene of Genesis to be based on the Sumerian view of Ningishzida – “The Tree of Good” … the literal emodiment of a snake representing the roots of a tree and ancient vines of grapes - - all at the same time.


(RiderOnTheClouds) #10

But why would the serpent of all animals be chosen as a symbol of chaos in so many religions?


(George Brooks) #11

@Reggie_O_Donoghue,

I don’t know. I’m sure there is someone with a theory.

But I’ve clearly defended my general thesis:

  1. Why would the Egyptians put a god of chaos on their crown, if they hated the God of chaos… if that was all snakes stood for?

  2. Why would Moses put a god of chaos on a pole?

  3. Why would the Greeks see them as propitious?

  4. Why would the Sumerians consider them symbols of Immortality and Wisdom?

There are lots and lots of questions, @Reggie_O_Donoghue.

But the only question that’s really relevant here is why was the Serpent chosen to represent an affinity with Human Sin in the Book of Geneiss?

If you look at the curse applied to snakes, it is very consistent with the Persian practice of killing all snakes. No other ANE culture pursued an animus against snakes to that extent.


#12

It wouldn’t be inconceivable at all, although I don’t know enough about that to make a judgement.


(George Brooks) #13

@Korvexius

Are you trying to save money on electrons? Can you write a sentence long enough that we know what you are commenting upon? What wouldn’t be inconceivable?

And if you don’t know enough to make a judgment, then how can you say it wouldn’t be inconceivable?


(Phil) #14

They serve fried rattlesnake at a “rattlesnake roundup” nearby. My dad once took a bite, and said while at first it tastes like chicken, the more you chew it, the more it tastes like snake.:slight_smile:


#15

Looks like you misunderstood what I wrote.


(George Brooks) #16

Ahhh… nice. Another “sentence-oid”. If it was a real sentence, it would have
advanced the discussion.

Don’t know what post you mean (because you didn’t put quotes around it).
And you don’t attempt to re-state what you think I misunderstood.

So, I’m guessing you are abandoning the topic, because this makes at least
two posts that you could have explained yourself, but have declined to do so.


#17

I simply said I don’t know whether or not to judge your claim is true. I never said it was false. You took it as a challenge for some reason.


(George Brooks) #18

I am inclined to think I am being challenged when someone says something along the lines of: “the opposite is quite likely to be true, even though I’m in no position to actually claim that it is anything more than idle speculation since I don’t even have enough facts to make an educated guess”.

I guess we are done then …


#19

I also never said the opposite is probably true. Hopefully that clears things up.


(system) #20

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