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  • The Bible- one of the world's oldest books and the best selling book in all of human

  • history.

  • It's served as the inspiration for some of humanity's greatest moments, and plenty of

  • its darkest.

  • Often misunderstood, and continuously judged and misquoted by people who've never even

  • cracked open its pages, the Bible is both a source of inspiration and consternation

  • for billions, and its legacy stretches back nearly two thousand years.

  • But no matter on which side of the presumption that the Bible is the word of God himself

  • you stand, either way you have to admit that it contains some outright weird stories.

  • -Half-human, half-angels-

  • The Nephilim have been one of the oldest mysteries of the Bible, with them first being mentioned

  • in the Book of Genesis.

  • Typically entire segments of the Bible which seem to make no sense to a modern reader make

  • a lot more sense when read in the ancient greek, hebrew, or aramaic- the three languages

  • the various books of the bible were written in.

  • In the case of the nephilim though, the ancient languages that first mention these beings

  • of great power offers no clues, as to this day nobody is quite sure what the word used

  • to describe the nephilim really meant other than 'to fall'.

  • The nephilim are first described in Genesis 6:1-6, which takes place after Adam and Eve

  • get an eviction notice from the Garden of Eve for unlawful fruit eating, and after Cain

  • kills Abel out of a fit of jealousy.

  • By now the earth has been populated by humans, and a mysterious group called thesons

  • of God”, took notice of the beauty of human women, taking them as wives and interbreeding

  • with them.

  • Their offspring would result in the nephilim, who were described as mighty men of renown,

  • indicating that whatever they were, a significant number of them must have risen to prominence

  • as great leaders.

  • Shortly after though God judges the world evil, and decides to hit the reset button

  • with the aid of Noah, who would ensure not all mankind was wiped out.

  • One great big flood and Russel Crowe film later, and humanity would start again.

  • Eventually the ancient jews would be enslaved by the egyptians and earn their freedom from

  • a very hard-headed pharaoh with the aid of God, fleeing for a promised land that god

  • had set aside for them.

  • As they neared the border though Moses dispatched some spies to scope out the land, and these

  • spies returned telling of the great people who inhabited the land- once more mentioning

  • the nephilim.

  • Biblical scholars continue to argue about what exactly the nephilim were, with many

  • believing they were simply the descendants of one of Cain's children.

  • However, if one is to take the bible literally then all of these descendants were wiped out

  • in a flood- and yet the nephilim once more appear in the promised land.

  • If all humans save Noah's family were wiped out in the flood, then perhaps Noah- or one

  • of his family members- was a nephilim themselves, or these were truly the children of fallen

  • angels and mortal women, the angels having avoided the destruction of the flood.

  • As most christians don't take the bible literally, many consider the nephilim to simply be prominent

  • and powerful figures in history, given nearly mystical attributes of greatness by their

  • contemporaries.

  • -Make fun of a prophet, get eaten by bears-

  • Elisha was one of the most important prophets of the Old Testament, succeeding his mentor,

  • Elijah whom he got to watch get spirited away to heaven right before his eyes.

  • That was probably a rather encouraging sight for the young prophet, because at the time

  • Israel was a land of paganism and debauchery.

  • God's people had turned their back on the god of their ancestors and taken up the worship

  • of the pagan gods of the people who lived around them, and to make matters worse Israel's

  • ancient political leaders often took a dim view on Elisha, or Elijah's, prophetic activity.

  • Shortly after Elisha took on his mentor's job, he headed for the city of Bethel.

  • As he approached the city, a bunch of youths came out of the city and made fun of Elisha

  • and his apparently bald head.

  • Elisha turned around and cursed them, and immediately God sent two female bears to eat

  • the impudent children.

  • As people who have often been around misbehaving, obnoxious children, we gotta say that it's

  • hard for us to be mad about this particular bible story.

  • Then he went up from there to Bethel; and as he was going up the road, some youths came

  • from the city and mocked him, and said to him, “Go up, you baldhead!

  • Go up, you baldhead!”

  • So he turned around and looked at them, and pronounced a curse on them in the name of

  • the LORD.

  • And two female bears came out of the woods and mauled forty-two of the youths.

  • But what really happened here?

  • Did God really murder a bunch of kids via bear?

  • Not quite.

  • In ancient hebrew the word for youths, as used in the scripture, was translated as young

  • men in a pretty broad sense.

  • It was used for Joseph in Genesis when he was a whopping 39 years old, and for Absalom

  • as an adult of unknown age, as well as Solomon at age 20.

  • From 39 to 20 years old, that's quite a broad range for this particular adjective.

  • Now Elisha had just recently returned from watching his mentor, Elijah, get beamed up

  • to heaven Star Trek style, and though Elisha was the only witness to it happening, Elijah

  • was a well known prophet and had told many people that he was soon to be beamed up.

  • Thus when Elisha approached Bethel, a city extremely hostile to his religious views,

  • it wouldn't have been uncommon knowledge that Elijah had been claiming he would be hoovered

  • up to heaven.

  • Lastly, we get to Elisha's bald head.

  • As Elisha lived fifty years after beginning his ministry, he was clearly not an old man

  • at the time.

  • His baldness was likely a result of bad genetics.

  • With some proper perspective, we get an entirely different interpretation of what actually

  • happened in this weird biblical tale.

  • Elisha, who was suffering from male pattern baldness at a young age, was on his way to

  • preach in a city that was a stronghold for pagan worship.

  • When men who could have been as old as 39 years old saw him coming, they rushed out

  • to intercept him, jeering and taunting him and his faith.

  • They made fun of both his mentor and close friend, Elijah, telling him togo up!”,

  • go up!”, as in go up into the sky and to heaven as Elijah had claimed he would do

  • and Elisha himself had told people he had seen happen.

  • Lastly, they called him a baldhead because, well, people are kind of dicks no matter the

  • century they live in.

  • God then sends bears to maul the group surrounding Elisha, but did God really kill a bunch of

  • iron age hecklers?

  • Well again, not quite.

  • The scripture states that forty two of them were attacked by bears, indicating that this

  • was a rather large crowd- and if only 42 were actually mauled then the real crowd was likely

  • much bigger.

  • Now we get a very different, and very scary picture for Elisha- traveling alone and suddenly

  • mobbed by a crowd taunting him.

  • What is also important is that the verse doesn't actually state that the bears killed anyone,

  • simply that they were mauled, and the ancient hebrew word indicates far less serious injuries

  • than we might associate with the term today.

  • So with some perspective we see a different story: Elisha, traveling alone, was mobbed

  • by villagers and God rescued him by sending bears to scare and threaten them.

  • Still a bit of a weird story though.

  • -God's chosen assassin-

  • It's a tale as old as.. well, the Bible.

  • Israel receives the blessings of god, and inevitably as the years go by and the people

  • enjoy the good life, they forget about god and start acting up.

  • Then a foreign invader occupies the land until the ancient jews turn back to god, only for

  • them to forget about god and get invaded again.

  • Modern biblical scholars point to the ancient jew's constant rebellion as the natural state

  • of man, and God's equally constant willingness to forgive them and restore their freedom

  • as his natural state of love and forgiveness.

  • Think what you will of the bible, this is an eerily accurate representation of life

  • for anyone who has kids.

  • During one of these occupations brought on by Israel turning away from God, the Jews

  • are occupied by the king of Moab, a neighboring country.

  • Rather than completely conquering the land though, Eglon, king of Moab, instead forced

  • Israel to pay annual tribute in the form of money and other valuables.

  • This was a popular tactic of ancient powers, as it was far simpler, and less expensive,

  • to simply bully your neighbors into becoming vassals than to militarily conquer them completely.

  • After 18 years of oppression by the Moabites, God chose Ehud to once more set his people

  • free.

  • Thus Ehud decided to kick off his rebellion by cutting the head directly off the snake.

  • Now Ehud made himself a dagger and fastened it under his clothes on his right thigh.

  • So he brought the tribute to Eglon king of Moab.

  • (Now Eglon was a very fat man.)

  • And when he had finished presenting the tribute, he sent away the people who had carried the

  • tribute.

  • But he himself turned back from the stone images that were at Gilgal, and said, “I

  • have a secret message for you, O king.”

  • He said, “Keep silence!”

  • And all who attended him went out from him.

  • And Ehud came to him.

  • Then Ehud said, “I have a message from God for you.”

  • So he arose from his seat.

  • Then Ehud reached with his left hand, took the dagger from his right thigh, and thrust

  • it into his belly.

  • Even the hilt went in after the blade, and the fat closed over the blade, for he did

  • not draw the dagger out of his belly; and his entrails came out.

  • Now in this episode we've talked about how important it is to frame weird bible stories

  • in the original language used, but this story is pretty much exactly what it sounds like,

  • and just as bad-ass.

  • Ehud snuck a dagger about a foot long under his tunic like some ancient assassin, and

  • then told the Moabite king that he had a secret message for him.

  • King Eglon, who was extremely obese, sent away his attendants, and in a move that was

  • likely meant to humiliate Ehud, he gave the Jewish assassin a private audience- right

  • outside of his toilet.

  • Yep, you heard that right, Eglon took an audience with Ehud to hear his message in what the

  • bible very politely describes as hiscool private chamber”.

  • Ehud, undeterred- or un-de-turd, get it?- then delivered the most bad-ass line in literature

  • until Liam Neeson's speech to his daughter's kidnappers in Taken's film script.

  • The assassin whips out his secret dagger and says, “I have a message from God for you.”,

  • then stabs the startled king so deep in his fat gut he can't pull the blade free.

  • As far as messages go, that one was definitely... to the point.

  • Ok, we'll stop now.

  • After delivering God's stab-a-gram, Ehud flees from the palace, and King Eglon's servants

  • who still believe he is on the toilet are so ashamed to interrupt him, that they let

  • him sit there for a few hours.

  • Finally, one of them figures that something weird is up, and risks royal embarrassment

  • to find his dear king stabbed to death on the john, sort of like a more violent version

  • of an ancient Elvis.

  • After assassinating the oppressive king, Ehud goes on to lead Israel to victory against

  • an army of 10,000 Moabites, securing peace for another 80 years.

  • After that eighty year peace though, you guessed it, the people fell away from God and once

  • more got invaded.

  • Some people believe the Bible is a literal account of history, and those people really

  • shouldn't because the earth is definitely older than 7,000 years and no, dinosaur bones

  • aren't a trick by Satan to confuse you.

  • Most Christians simply believe that the Bible is instead divinely inspired, and some elements

  • are historically accurate, while others are oral tradition of the ancient believers who

  • crafted the various books of this holy text.

  • Non Believers might look at the Bible as more of the latter, a sort of Christian book of

  • fables meant to inspire good behavior.

  • Whatever stance you take, what is undeniable is that the Bible is definitely full of some

  • weird stories.

  • Want to learn about some more weirdness?

  • Then check out our weird video: Weird Japanese School Rules.

  • Or perhaps you'd rather check out this other video instead.

  • Either way, go ahead and click one now and keep the watch party going!

The Bible- one of the world's oldest books and the best selling book in all of human

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聖書の中の最も奇妙な物語 (Most Weird Stories in the Bible)

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    Summer に公開 2021 年 01 月 14 日
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