198 – COHERENCE 2
Coherence is a logical sequence of thoughts, consistency, and harmony. God is absolute, perfect, righteous, just, and consistent about his laws, purposes, works, and acts. On the other side, incoherence means to say something and act differently; it is to act in one way certain situations, and another way in others. It is to judge a situation by certain rules, and another by other rules.
Let us read the word of Moses about Jehovah: “For I proclaim the name of Jehovah; ascribe greatness to our God! The Rock! His work is perfect, for all His ways are just; a God of faithfulness and without injustice” (Deut. 32:3-4).
According to what Moses said, Jehovah, the god of the Hebrews, is perfect in all his works. There are passages, though, that make us doubt the perfection and coherence of Jehovah:
- In the Law of Jehovah it is written, “Fathers shall not be put to death for their sons, nor shall sons be put to death for their fathers; everyone shall be put to death for his own sin” (Deut. 24:16). But the prophet Isaiah says differently: “‘Prepare for his sons a place of slaughter because of the iniquity of their fathers. They must not arise and take possession of the earth and fill the face of the world with cities. And I will rise up against them,’ declares Jehovah of hosts” (Is. 14:21-22). The proof that Jehovah kills the sons for the sins of the fathers is David, the beloved of Jehovah. David sinned, committing adultery and homicide. Jehovah, then, pronounced the sentence: “However, because by this deed you have given occasion to the enemies of Jehovah to blaspheme, the child also that is born to you shall surely die” (2 Sam. 12:14-18). In this case, we cannot see coherence in Jehovah.
- The “Holy Scriptures” of the Old Testament have to be infallible, otherwise they cannot be considered “holy.” David affirmed about Jehovah: “Who pardons all your iniquities; who heals all your diseases” (Ps. 103:3). But Jehovah does not forgive and heal “all.” He did not forgive David, for instance. Through Jeremiah, Jehovah says, filled with fury, “‘And I will dash them against each other, both the fathers and the sons together,’ declares Jehovah. ‘I will not show pity nor be sorry nor have compassion that I should not destroy them’” (Jer. 13:14). The prophet Ezekiel is more contusing: “Therefore, I indeed shall deal in wrath. My eye will have no pity nor shall I spare; and though they cry in My ears with a loud voice, yet I shall not listen to them” (Ezek. 8:18). There are many other passages saying that Jehovah does not forgive (Ezek. 5:11-12; Deut. 29:20; 2 Kings 24:3-4, etc). Besides that, against what Psalm 103:3 says, Jehovah does not heal all sicknesses. The prophet Nahum says, “There is no relief for your breakdown, your wound is incurable” (Nah. 3:19). Concerning Israel, Micah declares, “For her wound is incurable” (Mic. 1:1-9). And now the prophet Jeremiah speaks: “Hast Thou completely rejected Judah? Or hast thou loathed Zion? Why hast Thou stricken us so that we are beyond healing?” (Jer. 14:19).Therefore, there is no consistency also here.
- Isaiah said, “Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts; and let him return to Jehovah, and He will have compassion on him; and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon” (Is. 55:7). But Solomon, on the part of Jehovah, spoke differently: “Because I called and you refused; I stretched out my hand, and no one paid attention; and did not want my reproof; I will even laugh at your calamity; I will mock when your dread comes, when your dread comes like a storm, and your calamity comes on like a whirlwind, when distress and anguish com on you. Then they will call on me, but I will not answer; they will seek me diligently, but they shall not find me” (Prov. 1:24-28). Jehovah is inconsistent, for first he said that he would have compassion, and afterwards sends mortal incurable sicknesses (Deut. 28:22,27,60, 61).
- Jehovah forbids his people Israel to marry with strange women: “When Jehovah your God shall bring you into the land where you are entering to possess it, and shall clear away many nations before you, the Hittites and the Girgashites and the Amorites and the Canaanites and the Perizzites and the Hivites and the Jebusites, seven nations greater and stronger than you, and when Jehovah your God shall deliver them before you, and you shall defeat them, then you shall utterly destroy them. You shall make no covenant with them and show no favor to them. Furthermore, you shall not intermarry with them; you shall not give your daughters to their sons, nor shall you take their daughters for your sons” (Deut. 7:1-3). This prohibition is also in Ezek. 34:15-16 and Josh. 23:12-13. At another time Jehovah gives the following inconsistent recommendation, “When you go out to battle against your enemies, and Jehovah your God delivers them into your hands, and you take them away captive, and see among the captives a beautiful woman, and have a desire for her and would take her as a wife for yourself, then you shall bring her home to your house, and she shall shave her head and trim her nails. She shall also remove the clothes of her captivity and shall remain in your house, and mourn her father and mother a full month; and after that you may go into her and be her husband and she shall be your wife. And it shall be, if you are not pleased with her, then you shall let her go wherever she wishes” (Deut. 21:10-14). Therefore, for Jehovah there is no marriage. A man takes a woman, uses her at his will, gets tired of her, and discards her. Besides being inconsistent, this attitude also reveals a great injustice towards this woman.
- We find in the law of Jehovah that if the husband would find any ugly thing in the wife, he could dismiss her, giving her a certificate of divorce. If that woman married another man, she would not be allowed to return to the first husband, because she would have been defiled, then, and this would be an abomination to Jehovah, as Deut. 24:1-4 says. Well, Abram was Sarai’s husband. For fear of the Egyptians, as Sarai was very beautiful, he told her to say to Pharaoh that she was her sister. Pharaoh took her for a wife for a long period of time, enough for Abram to get rich. After that, Jehovah hurt Pharaoh with plagues. Pharaoh, then, returned Sarai to Abram. By the criterion of the law, she had already been defiled, by then. If Jehovah had the intention of hurting Pharaoh, why did he not do it before Sarai was defiled, keeping her for Abram? Jehovah has two measures, or can it be that he allowed the defilement of Sarai with the purpose of making the betrayed Abram rich? Can it be that, before he gave the Law Jehovah thought in a certain way, and after he gave it he began to think differently? There is no consistency here! It happens that, in Genesis 20, we read that Abram followed that same example, using the exact deceitful mechanism with Abimelech, king of Gerar, who planned to take Sarai as wife. This time, though, Jehovah did not allow it, and appeared to Abimilech in a dream, saying, “Behold, you are a dead man because of the woman whom you have taken.” The two different behaviors of Jehovah in these two instances confirm his inconsistency. First, he backed up Abram’s lie to Pharaoh, and then, he did not back up the other similar attitude to king Abimelech. He allowed Pharaoh to defile Sarai, and forbid Abimelech to touch her, after she had already been defiled.
An inconsistent god like this can never be the Father of Jesus. Neither could he be the Son, though people say that Jehovah is Jesus. The fact is, Jesus is not inconsistent, as Jehovah has shown himself to be, so many times. By the way, if Jehovah were Jesus, who would be the Father, to whom Jesus constantly prayed?
By Pastor Olavo Silveira Pereira