Friday, March 30, 2012

Old Testament Evil

The Bible: Evidence That God Is Evil?

Judaism - Christianity - Islam

What is the common denominator?

The Hebrew Bible/Old Testament/Torah

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Volcanic Eruption off Coast of Saudi Arabia

Well things certainly are hotting up aren't they? The number of people who have laughed at me on forums for saying Saudi is volcanic and the number of people who have refused to believe any volcanoes in Saudi could be active, recent or even's a wonder I've carried on with this theory. My volcano! I'm not getting paid for all this either!

So, here you active volcano in Saudi/Yemen waters....also showing how the Hebrew imaginery god can create land....he is the creator after all. Water cooled lava islands. The Red Sea is lined with volcanoes and those volcanoes will erupt whenever there is drift of the continents and as stated in an earlier post, this can happen suddenly. Imagine the shock and awe that sight would have on ancient nomads. Enough to inspire a religion.


This three part video is about the Santorini eruption that happened around the time of the Exodus from Egypt and is likely the cause of the ten plagues. Its aftermath was so devastating it brought to an end a Chinese dynasty. Contrary to the video, the island inhabitants had many months warning that something happened and the reason there were no bodies found is likely due to everyone being able to escape to nearby islands.

This video shows very nicely what a waste of time it is to hold out hope your god will save you.

Red Sea Rifting

I got mocked by many on a forum a while ago for saying continental drift, or its effects, could occur suddenly rather than very gradually. Well, it seems I was right after all.
For the past 30 million years the Arabian tectonic plate has been moving away from the African (Nubian) plate at the Red Sea. But the rift, in which Earth's crust is being stretched and thinned, is not happening smoothly. Most of the time the plates are stuck together. But in September of last year they split apart along a 37-mile (60-kilometer) section in Afar, Ethiopia (Ethiopia map), near the southern end of the Red Sea. Read more here.

"The event was a vivid expression of the unimaginable amount of stored energy the Earth releases from time to time to split apart continents,"

Hail in the Bible

Hail in the Bible, I believe, was not hail at all but small balls of white sulphur thrown out of volcanoes. I believe it was called hail because it looked like hail. It was a puzzling sight to the ancient Hebrews...

''There was hail and fire flaming amid the hail'' [Va'eira 9:24]

The Midrash states that the Plague of Hail was a miracle within a miracle: the hail did not extinguish the fire and the fire did not melt the hail.  Rather, both elements joined forces in smiting the Egyptians.........So it was with the Plague of Hail. Hail and fire cannot co-exist because the nature of fire is to melt hail and the nature of hail is to extinguish fire. But in this instance, Hashem made peace between them and together they struck at the Egyptians. Read all here.
As stated in an earlier post, I also discovered there is a place named Hail that does have volcanoes that throw out small white balls of sulphur, or at least used to. That place is in North-western Saudi Arabia.

In Hail there are some mountains and one of them, AsSamra, is a tourist attaction that has a gas powered fire on its summit.

Human occupation in Hail goes back to prehistoric times as indicated by the numerous stone artifacts and rock drawings. Large numbers of Thamudic inscriptions can be seen in the mountains. Hail has a complex history of trade, travel, conflict and occupation - traces of which are left all over the countryside. Historically, Hail maintained cultural relations with the Assyrian, Babylonian and Levantine cultures. Assyrian and Babylonian incursions into Northern Arabia passed through Hail. Hail also acted as a trade center connecting four main roads leading to Jawf, Buraydah, Al-Najaf and Jarha.....There are numerous different types of relics. Read more of this very interesting piece here.

There is a connection somewhere here. A place in NW Saudi Arabia is named Hail, it has volcanoes that produce small white sulphar balls, it is steeped in ancient nomadic history, its original ancient landguage Thamudic (which sounds suspiciously like Talmudic and is also written right to left) also covered the Sinai and the ancient Hebrews in Egypt during the ten plagues thought balls of white sulphar thrown down in a storm due to a volcanic eruption was hail.

Did the ancient Hebrews leave Egypt during the Santorini eruption, make their way around the Sinai (leaving rock inscriptions in Thamudic), wander around the NW Arabian desert, find the volcanoes in Hail, and name the place Hail?

Hail is also a Hebrew name....see here.

This discovery means that sulphar balls landed on the Egyptians during the ten plagues. Not ice hail but sulphar. This is evidence of something I had been thinking about for some time. The Santorini eruption, due to being so immense, set off a chain of volcanic events in the Gulf of Suez Rift. It's either that or the sulphar balls were carried in the wind and clouds from Santorini. Well, it's possible as it was a powerful eruption...14 000 times more powerful than the Hiroshima bomb.

You can see other posts on hail in the Bible here and here.

Yahweh the Storm God?

One of the biggest arguments I get against the theory the ancient Hebrews worshipped an imaginery volcano god is that Yahweh is often assumed to be a storm god due to all the lightening, clouds, rain and darkness. Well, all those things can be produced very impressively by volcanoes. In fact, lightening displays can be more impressive on top of a volcano than in the open sky due to the ash clouds.

This article explains how volcanoes can produce massive electrical storms.

It is also worth noting for future research that there is a place called Ha'il where there are volcanoes that throw out balls of white sulphur that could look like hail, and the that could be where the word 'hail' came from. That place is in Saudi Arabia and this is one of its volcanoes.

Jordan Maxwell - Yahweh

'We know that western religion is based on a far older Bible, the Bible of the Old Testament. Even further back, if you go back into the most ancient history of the world, especially in the Middle East, you will see that the volcano was one of the many things that was worshiped. The volcano was very important because it represented life and creation, and it had a sexual connotation...That's why today in most men's rooms, and hotels, and restaurants there will always be a triangle on the door. Triangle being the pyramid, or pyramid, coming from pyra, meaning fire, and mid, meaning middle. The fire of sexual generation is in the middle of the human body, that is why the volcano always represented sex, or the coming of life and the fire of life that brings new life to the world. So the volcano was a very important symbol to the ancient peoples of the world.

The volcano, like any other impressive or fearful aspect of nature, had become an object of worship for human beings from the time of the earliest stone age. Yet the original Yahweh, which was one of the gods of the Old Testament, seems to have begun as a volcano god. Mount Sinai, where Moses encountered him, was the seat of the Middianite god, and in the Middianite's earliest homeland he was identified with the local Moon god "Sin," which is where we get the name for the mountain in the Middle East, Sinai, or Sinai. It comes from the old Moon god Sin, after whom the mountain was named.

The Bible describes the appearance of Yahweh as a pillar of cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night, as found in Exodus 13: 21-22.The word volcano comes from the Latin volcano god Vulcan, or Vulcanus, derived from the old Cretan deity Velchanos. Now here we have the pillar of cloud by day, and the pillar of fire by night, and the Israelites in the desert with their representation of God. In Job 38 we find that thunder, in Hebrew, is considered the voice of God. Thunder, in Hebrew, is called voices, or the voice of God. In other references on Job 38 it talks about the storm. It says that the storm and clouds are in God's tent, which gather as the thunder, as the voice of Yahweh. The voice of Yahweh is roaring, they descend and God shoots his arrows of lightning. So we're talking about the God of the Old Testament with his thunder and his arrows of lightning. In Hebrew, this reference states that "God thunders wonderfully with his voice." So now we see that thunder and lightning are connected to the old volcano god, the god of the volcano.

It is said that at Mount Sinai Jehovah performed signs, the mountain smoked and trembled all over, and many now heard the proof that what Moses had made known in God's name was actually the word of God. The Israelites were at Mount Sinai, which is always pictured time and again, in many biblical texts, as a volcano. Jehovah led the sons of Israel to the mountain named Sinai, and there he gave them his law. The mountain at Sinai where the Israelites encountered Yahweh was actually a volcano.

On the cover of the Jewish Torah we often see pictured the benediction symbol. This is the rabbinical benediction symbol that's the blessing symbol with which the rabbis bless the congregation. The high priest of Israel often raised his hands in the priestly blessing for Yahweh, the volcano god, or Vulcan. So we see that this is a priestly blessing in the Hebrew. And today the rabbi always gives the priestly blessing for Yahweh at the synagogue. This also explains why Mr. Spock from "Star Trek" gives the exact same "priestly blessing," and that's why Mr. Spock is called a Vulcan. That was the whole idea of the Vulcan, coming from Vulcanus, or the old Cretan deity which was later to be found in the Old Testament under the name of Yahweh.'

Jordan Maxwell.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Hosea 10:14

This is a revealing translation of Hosea 10:14.

NIV  the roar of battle will rise against your people, so that all your fortresses will be devastated-- as Shalman devastated Beth Arbel on the day of battle, when mothers were dashed to the ground with their children.

The Message  But the volcano of war will erupt among your people. All your defense posts will be leveled As viciously as king Shalman leveled the town of Beth-arba, When mothers and their babies were smashed on the rocks.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Volcanoes in Egypt

I've been thinking for a while now that perhaps the pyramids of Egypt represented volcanoes. 'The Most High', 'The Rock', etc. A brief search into volcanoes in Egypt would suggest there aren't any, however Egypt does have volcanic fields. The African Rift ensures East Africa has plenty of volcanic activity. It is very hard to find information though and even when you do find it it is misleading or incomplete.

For example, this article says the hills in the Black Desert are 'volcano shaped' and the area is covered with 'black stones' when the truth is that the hills are not hills but volcanoes and the black stones strewn everywhere were shot out of the volcanoes as Yahweh shot out his fiery darts. Would Egypt get as many tourists if the pyramids were known to represent volcanoes?

Black Desert, Egypt

The man who, as a child, drew this picture now finds it amusing stating, 'Apparently I thought the pyramids were some sort of man-made representation of a volcano.' I think a lot of the world's puzzles could be explained away if the adult experts were replaced with children who not only have simple and unbaised minds able to see the truth through the deception but also have magical thinking, which is useful when trying to empathise with those in the past who also had magical thinking. You either have to have it or have had it in order to understand it.

Another reason why I suspect the Egyptian pyramids were based on volcanoes is because the Mayans also built pyramids and they also lived in a volcanic area.

In general, Sheets said, volcanism was an integral part of ancient Maya life. Some of the temples in the highland Maya cities, for example, mimic sacred volcanoes.

"The temple buildings have doorways in the tops, where they burned incense, and the rising smoke was used to carry various messages to ancestor spirits and the deities," Sheets explained.

Volcanic eruptions also fit into the Maya worldview that life is full of phenomena that can be either hazards or opportunities, and that human behavior can tip the balance, Sheets said. For the Maya, a smoking volcano wasn't always a harbinger of doom. Humans could turn its ash into a benefit, such as fertilizer or additives to strengthen pottery clay. The Maya could also stall the eruption altogether—or so they thought.

"They did bloodletting rituals, respected the deities, fed the spirits of their ancestors, and so on" to try to control volcanoes, Sheets said.

Study leader Tankersley emphasizes that the unpredictable mountains, too, were at the crux of Maya culture.

"They built temples in the shapes of volcanoes, and their ceremonies replicate volcanic events," he said."To the Maya, volcanoes were part of life—an essential part of their life."

It all sounds very familiar to the animal sacrifice and blood letting of the ancient Hebews at the foot of Mount Sinai, all in the hope of appeasing the volcano god Yahweh.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Christianity Exposed: Angry Magician in a Mountain

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Psalm 18

 2 The LORD is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; (Rock as in great big volcano)  
my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge,
   my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.
 3 I called to the LORD, who is worthy of praise,
   and I have been saved from my enemies.
4 The cords of death entangled me;
   the torrents of destruction overwhelmed me.
5 The cords of the grave coiled around me;
   the snares of death confronted me.
 6 In my distress I called to the LORD;
   I cried to my God for help.
From his temple he heard my voice; (Volcanic temple)  
my cry came before him, into his ears.
7 The earth trembled and quaked,
   and the foundations of the mountains shook;
   they trembled because he was angry. (No, they trembled because a volcano was blowing its top)

8 Smoke rose from his nostrils; 
   consuming fire came from his mouth,
   burning coals blazed out of it.
He parted the heavens and came down;
   dark clouds were under his feet.
10 He mounted the cherubim and flew;
   he soared on the wings of the wind.
11 He made darkness his covering, his canopy around him—
   the dark rain clouds of the sky.
12 Out of the brightness of his presence
clouds advanced,
   with hailstones and bolts of lightning.
13 The LORD thundered from heaven;
   the voice of the Most High resounded.

14 He shot his arrows and scattered the enemy,
   with great bolts of lightning he routed them.

15 The valleys of the sea were exposed
   and the foundations of the earth laid bare
at your rebuke, LORD,
   at the blast of breath from your nostrils.
blah blah blah waffle waffle waffle.....
Good Lord! Whoever wrote that load of eulogising must have been on something.

Temples of Judaism

The original temples of the ancient Hebrews were, I believe, 'Holy Hills'....volcanoes.

Pslam 11:4 'The LORD is in his holy temple, the LORD'S throne is in heaven: his eyes behold, his eyelids test, the children of men.'

Psalm 18:6 'In my distress I called upon the LORD, and cried unto my God: he heard my voice out of his temple, and my cry came before him, even into his ears.'

Micah 1:2 'Hear, O peoples, all of you, listen, O earth and all who are in it, that the Sovereign LORD may witness against you, the Lord from his holy temple.'

Habakkuk 2:20 'But the LORD is in his holy temple; let all the earth be silent before him.'

Revelation 11:19 Then God’s temple in heaven was opened, and within his temple was seen the ark of his covenant. And there came flashes of lightning, rumblings, peals of thunder, an earthquake and a severe hailstorm.

Jonah 2 NIV

 1 From inside the fish Jonah prayed to the LORD his God. 2 He said:
   “In my distress I called to the LORD,
   and he answered me.
From deep in the realm of the dead I called for help,
   and you listened to my cry.
3 You hurled me into the depths,
   into the very heart of the seas,
   and the currents swirled about me;
all your waves and breakers
   swept over me.
4 I said, ‘I have been banished
   from your sight;
yet I will look again
   toward your holy temple.’
5 The engulfing waters threatened me,
   the deep surrounded me;
   seaweed was wrapped around my head.
6 To the roots of the mountains I sank down;
   the earth beneath barred me in forever.
But you, LORD my God,
   brought my life up from the pit.
 7 “When my life was ebbing away,
   I remembered you, LORD,
and my prayer rose to you,
   to your holy temple.
 8 “Those who cling to worthless idols
   turn away from God’s love for them.
9 But I, with shouts of grateful praise,
   will sacrifice to you.
What I have vowed I will make good.
   I will say, ‘Salvation comes from the LORD.’”

Jonah, of course, was not talking about a temple made of bricks and mortar nor of a tabernacle tent. He was talking about Yahweh's natural temple.....a volcano. The temples of Judaism were volcanoes. When the volcanoes ceased to erupt, or when the Hebrews moved away from them, temples were man made constructions but, until then, they were volcanoes.

Please also see how pyramids represent volcanoes and additional verses that reveal where the  Hebrews believed their god lived in a Holy Hill (volcano temple).

As the ancient Hebrews either mostly or partly originated from Mesopotamia, the fertile land adjacent to the volcano Mount Ararat, manmade temples can be found. The manmade temples were built to entice the mountain gods of fire (volcano gods) down in the hope they would set up residence in one.

Mesopotamian temples
The temple of Mesopotamia derived from the cult of gods and deities in Mesopotamian religion. It spanned several civilizations; from Sumerian, Akkadian, Assyrian, and Babylonian. The most common temple architecture of Mesopotamia is the structure of sun-baked bricks called Ziggurat, having the form of a terraced step pyramid with flat upper terrace where shrine or temple stood.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Abraham in Mecca?

Narrated Anas bin Malik:The Mountain of Uhud came in sight of Allah's Apostle who then said, "This is a mountain that loves us and is loved by us. O Allah! Abraham made Mecca a sanctuary and I make the area between its (Medina's) two mountains a sanctuary." Koran - Bukhari: Book 9: 433

Abraham made Mecca a sanctuary?

Mountain that loves and is loved?

Friday, March 9, 2012

Yahweh the Volcano God

Yahweh the volcano are some quotes on the subject....

Jacob Dunn has been published in the Journal for the Study of the Old Testament: A God of Volcanoes: Did Yahwism Take Root in Volcanic Ashes?

Exerts from paper abstract: "This study combines the southern geographical placement of Yahweh's sacred mountain in Midian with biblical descriptions of the theophany at Sinai-Horeb—descriptions which have prompted scholars to interpret the events at the ‘mountain of God’ as volcanic in nature. this study next advances an interdisciplinary approach and a new reformulation of the Midianite–Kenite hypothesis, combining geography, geology, and volcanology with the textual element that deals with ancient Midian and the Sinai-Horeb tradition. Finally, this study seeks to offer a scientific analysis of the texts, both poetic and narrative, which seem to indicate Sinai-Horeb was a volcanic mountain and pilgrimage site in northwest Saudi Arabia."

In the NIV Achaeological Study Bible, Mount Sinai is said to be a volcano.

On page 96 of The Urantia Book Yahweh is said to be just one of hundreds of nature gods but with a volcano as its deity.

In 'Moses and Monotheism' by Sigmund Freud, Yahweh is said to be a volcano god.

In 'Mount Sinai a Volcano' by Charles beke, Mount Sinai is said to be a volcano.

In 'The Invention of God' by Bill Lauritzen,  the role of volcanoes is highlighted in the establishment of 'god'.

In 'Mythology's Last Gods', William R.Harwood describes Yahweh as a volcano god.

In 'The Christ Conspiracy', Acharya S describes Yahweh as a volcano god.

In 'The Woman's Encyclopedia of Myths and Secrets by Barbara Walker, Yahweh is said to have been a volcano god.

In 'The Masks of God Volume 3 Occidental Mythology' by Joseph Campell, Yahweh is described as an Arabian volcano god.

In 'The Jews: Story of a People' by Howard Fast, Yahweh was described as a volcano.

In 'Mass Psychology', Sigmund Freud says Yahwey was a volcano god.

In 'Atheism in Christianity' by Ernst Block, Yahweh was said to be a volcano god.

In 'The Oxford Companion to the Bible' by M.Coogan and B.Metzger, Yahweh is described as a volcano god.

In 'Psychoanalysis and Religios Experience' by W.W.Meissner, Yahweh is described as a volcano god.

In 'All About Adam and Eve' by Robert Gillooly, Yahweh is described as a volcano god.

In 'The Genesis of Misconception' by Paul John, Yahweh is described as a volcano god.

In 'The Autobiography of God' by William Harwood, Yahweh is described as an extinct volcano god.

In 'Adieu to God' by Michael Power, Yahweh is described as originating from a volcano god.

In 'Freud and Moses' by Emauel Rice, Yahweh is described as a volcano god.

In 'Moses the Egyptian' by Jan Assman, Yahweh is described as a volcanic demon.

In 'Eschatology in the old Testament' by Donald E. Gowan, Yahweh is described as a volcano or storm god.

In 'Water for a thirsty land' by H.Gunkel and K.C.Hanson, Yahweh is described as a volcanic deity.

In 'The Divine Invasion' by Philip Dick, Yahweh is described as probably a volcanic deity.

From here...If we are to take the biblical description of the natural phenomena accompanying said procedure seriously, one has to presume the mountain to have been a volcanoHistory: Fiction or Science? Chronology 1  By Anatoly Fomenko


The Egyptian Moses was murdered and his religion was abandoned, but he had an Egyptian retinue with him, the original Levites. A fair number of them survived the massacre and the putting down of the Aton worship. The Levites became the elite of the Jewish people. The Jewish people emerged out of the confluence of the Jewish tribe which had come from Egypt under the leadership of Moses and the other tribes which had never been in Egypt. The latter had adopted in the desert the cult of the volcano god and their leaders was a Midianite priest, ;et us say Jethro. The decisive event was a compromise. The Levites adopt the volcano god but insist on circumcision as a price, circumcision being an Egyptian institution. Everything else was abandoned except circumcision. What happens later on can be said in a few words. The story of the Exodus from Egypt was rewritten from a volcanistic point of view, just as the sun god became overlaid by the volcano god. And Moses is overlaid by the Midianite priest, the original worshiper of the volcano god. We know nothing, however, about this other Moses. He is entirely obscured by the first, the Egyptian Moses. The only opening might be the clues provided by the contradictions to be found in the bible's charaterisation of Moses. 'He is often enough described as masterful, hot-tempered, even violent, and yet it is also said of him that he was the most patient and meek of all men'. Jewish Philosophy and the Crisis of Modernity by Leo Strauss.

'[The Hebrew God] was, through and through, a mythic-level production: a geocentric, egocentric, anthropocentric local volcano god...' READ MORE

'Jahve [i.e. Yahweh] was certainly a volcano-god.' READ MORE

'It is very clear from descriptions in the Hebrew Bible, that Yahweh, the god of the ancient Hebrews is a raging volcano god.' READ MORE

'The title "Jealous/Zealous" is also appropriate for a god represented by a volcano, as was Yahweh by the smoky and fiery Mt. Sinai.' READ MORE

'Yahweh was the god of the southern Palestinian tribes, who associated this concept of deity with Mount Horeb, the Sinai volcano. Yahweh was merely one of the hundreds and thousands of nature gods which held the attention and claimed the worship of the Semitic tribes and peoples.' READ MORE

'Yahweh was originally a volcano god, a god of thunder, lightning, and earthquakes who often manifested himself in fire (viz. the burning bush).' READ MORE

'Several generations later, the Jews came under a new religion devoted to the worship of Yahweh, a blood thirsty and demonic volcano God.' READ MORE

Quote from article......In Exodus, it states that the Israelites, while under the guidance of Moses, had many gods, many of which they represented by gold and silver idols. It was not until Moses and the Israelites had their encounter with a dynamic, smoke covered and potentially retributional, mountain, that they adopted its local god as their own God, Yahweh. He was too good to be true - a god with a thunderous voice, of trumpets and fiery tantrums that proved him far more powerful than all of their other gods put together. But most importantly, a thunderous cloud covered the mountain - a feature that Moses' god had possessed throughout Exodus.

As Salibi points out in Secrets of the Bible People, it doesn't take much imagination to realise that Yahweh's mountain home was in fact a volcano, summit engulfed in smoke. Later we find Yahweh as a 'devouring fire' on top of the mountain, and some weeks later, after Moses had returned from his second stint on the mountain, he warns his people that whoever touches the mountain it shall stone to death, be it beast or man. Three days later we find the mountain quaking. There were thunder and lightning. The mountain was all in smoke. Yahweh had descended on it in fire, and smoke rose as the smoke of a furnace. A better description of a volcano is hard to imagine.

For the conventional biblical scholar, the major shortcoming of these passages is that Palestine, the conventional setting for all of these events is, and was not, a volcanic area! Salibi, on the other hand, is handed Mount Elohim ['mountain of the gods'; which the bible mentions in relation to Moses, and is located in volcanically active area of Yemen] on a plate, as the home of Yahweh. A river having essentially the name of Sinai still exists in the vicinity, not far from a ridge (possibly biblical Mt. Sinai) where the Israelites watched the 'fireworks'.

When the Israelites headed back into what is now western Arabia, such an omnipotent god - the undisputed creator of the entire world - was too good to leave behind. Moses therefore 'persuaded' him to leave his volcanic home and join them, which he did, deposing the original pantheon of Israelite gods [making them the first monotheists in recorded history] and travelled with them in unheard-of luxury, as described in Exodus 25-31. To this day, Jews, Christians and Muslims still worship Yahweh, even though He has been an invisible God since being divorced from His once mighty volcano.


The tribe of the Levites, with whom Moses was associated, was another matter altogether. They worshiped a thundering, fierce god, whose location was either Mount Horeb, or Mount Sinai. Very likely the two mountains are one and the same -- there is no proof either way. Was this god the same Yahweh, the God of Abraham? Very possibly. If not, the two entities, Yahweh of Abraham and the warrior god of the Levites were combined into one impressive entity that Moses, very likely a full-blooded Levite himself, had adopted as his own God. That is proven by the fact that later, only the Levites acted as priests toYahweh in the various Temples.

The Israelites had to physically leave 
Egypt to worship Yahweh. They could not, under any circumstances, worship Him in Egypt, because they could not even see him there. Exodus is very specific as to what they had to see: "They took their journey from Succoth and encamped at Etham, in the edge of the wilderness. The Lord Yahweh went before them by day in a pillar of a cloud, to lead them the way; and by night in a pillar of fire, to give them light; to go by day and night (Exodus )." This is a clear and simple description of an active volcano- - smoke by day, fire by night.

Then, to fully prove this assumption, they gathered around this mountain, and were told that they were never to climb or touch it, on danger of death. "Take heed to yourselves, that ye go not up into the mount, or touch the border of it: whosoever touchesth the mount shall be surely put to death (Exodus 
)." The mountain must have been dangerously hot to the touch. The passage continues: "And mount Sinai was altogether on a smoke, because the Lord Yahweh descended upon it in fire: and the smoke thereof ascended as the smoke of a furnace, and the whole mount quaked greatly." Another clear description of an active volcano. And at this emotionally impressive location Moses gave the Israelites a Code of Law, and reforged a covenant which was to become the basis for the development of monotheism.

Time passed. Judges, kings and prophets presided over the Israelites. Yahweh continued side by side with the other gods. The first attempt to create pure monotheism, one God without an image, was conceived by the prophet Isaiah. Philosophically inclined, Isaiah was extremely advanced in his views about monotheism, well ahead of his time. His vision could not tolerate other gods next to the one, universal God.

Two other prophets continued to develop the concept. Habakkuk claimed that Yahweh was a righteous, loving God, not the fierce volcano God of fire and war, and the God of all men. There was no war between Yahweh and other gods, because no other gods could exist.

What happened in the seventy years of the Babylonian diaspora shaped the change in Yahweh. Until then, the Israelites, like all other nations, believed that each god had a locality. A god belonged to a country, a city, a mountain, a river. He or she dwelled in a temple built in this special location. Any captive, merchant, immigrant, or traveling physician worshiped in the town or village where he now lived, because his former gods were simply out of touch.

The Israelites, who were treated quite well in 
Babylon, were invited to worship any Babylonian god they wished, as was the custom. But the Israelites could not do that. Perhaps if the peasants, and other simple people were driven to Babylon they would have willingly changed -- but not the Levites. They simply could not give up their connection to the God they so loved, were so connected to, identified themselves with. It was unthinkable.

Instead, an equally unthinkable, unprecedented religious revolution took place. The Jews transformed God. They made him omnipresent, liberated Him from His location, and made him a universal God. They no longer really needed a temple, though eventually a new temple would be built, as a national symbol. Instead, they built synagogues, where people could congregate and pray together to a God that was omniscient, omnipresent, had no location, no shape or form, and no rivals. As a result, the Jews had to accept the fact that He must be the God of every other person on Earth. The Jews were still God's chosen people -- but only chosen to spread His word and suffer for the sake of the rest of the nations so that the world can be redeemed, an honor and a burden given to them by God. With such immense presence, He also had to mature psychologically. Obviously, he was no longer a warrior God, a fierce volcano God, fighting for his chosen people. The vision of Isaiah, Habakkuk and Jeremiah took the final stride toward a merciful, righteous God, whose love permeated the entire universe.

Babylon, the Jews put together all their lore and laws and codes into a book -- The Torah, knitting together all the preexisting narratives. An incredibly significant point of that book is that the word Elohim, which once meant the "other gods" became one of Yahweh's many titles. In other words, any other divinity was nothing but an aspect of this unseen presence of Yahweh. The transformation was complete.

Yahweh the volcano god.


S. B. Segall on Mt. Sinai in Understanding the Exodus: And Other Mysteries of Jewish History:
When Moses went up the mountain he expected to see God. When he came down from the mountain he told the Israelites that no one could see God's face and live, but that by shielding himself behind a rock and looking through a crack in the rock he cold see the dazzling light of the Lord's presence (Exodus, Chapter 33). Moses wanted to stand at the rim of the volcano to see God, but the heat from the red-hot rock and swirling ash would have killed him. The closest he could get to seeing inside the volcano was to see the light from the volcano while he was shielded by a boulder.

What Moses saw on the mountain matched what he thought God would be--a spirit without form; a pure source of energy radiating heat and light; a being so powerful that no one could face him directly and remain alive. When Moses saw the light radiating from the volcano, he truly believed that he had seen God.
The description of Mount Sinai given in the Bible is an unambiguous description of a volcano. Not recognizing this almost requires a mental block. The pillar of cloud and fire leading the Israelites to Mount Sinai is easily understood in terms of the column of hot ash rising from the top of the volcano. Thunder and lightning accompanying a volcanic eruption is a phenomenon that anyone who has witnessed a volcano would be able to confirm. The burning bush is consistent with what one might expect to observe in the vicinity of a volcano in the gas rich Arabian Peninsula. Moses' description of God is also consistent with an attempt to try to see into the top of a volcano. It is incredible, with such an accurate description of Mount Sinai, that a non-volcanic mountain in the Sinai Desert is generally identified as the location of the biblical Mount Sinai, even though the Book of Deuteronomy describes a route to Mount Sinai that is not at all consistent with that choice.

One we have identified a physical phenomenon described in the Bible, it is possible to begin to distinguish fact from embellishment. The description of a pillar of cloud and fire separating the Israelites and Egyptians at the Red Sea is clearly fiction as well as descriptions of the pillar of cloud and fire appearing in any situation not directly connected with Mount Sinai. To claim that fact and fiction are so intertwined that it is impossible to distinguish one from the other is nonsense in this case. To claim that the eruption of Mount Sinai never happened and that it is the invention of a person with no knowledge of volcanic eruptions is equally untenable.

Knowing that the whole region was volcanically and seismically active during this period of history makes it possible to understand other supposed miracles. There is, however, no evidence that the scribes writing down these stories in their final form had any inkling that these types of physical phenomena could occur naturally or that they had ever experienced anything remotely similar to these phenomena.
pages 87-96

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Academic papers covering related subjects.....

  • Thomas Mann, “The Pillar of Cloud in the Reed Sea Narrative,” JBL 90 (1971)
  • G. Hort, "Musil, Madian and the Mountain of the Law" in Jewish Studies: Essays in Honour of the Very Reverend Dr. Gustav Sicher, Chief Rabbi of Prague (Prague, 1955)
  • Foster, Ritner and Foster, "Texts, Storms, and the Thera Eruption," JNES 55 (1996)
  • K. Polinger Foster, “Volcanic Landscapes in Lugal-e” in L. Milano et al., eds., Landscapes: Territories, Frontiers, and Horizons in the Ancient Near East, Proceedings of the XLIV Rencontre Assyriologique, vol. III (Padua, 1999), pp. 23-29.
  • the volume Cultural Responses to the Volcanic Landscape: the Mediterranean and Beyond (esp. papers like "Volcanic Echoes in Ancient Near Eastern Texts")
  • Barbara Sivertsen, The Parting of the Sea: How Volcanoes, Earthquakes, and Plagues Shaped the Story of Exodus (Princeton Univ. Press 2009)
  • P. D. Miller, Jr., “Fire in the Mythology of Canaan and Israel,” CBQ 27 (1965), 256-61