Saturday, March 26, 2016

Did Abraham sacrifice Ishmael or Isaac?

On the right hand column of my blog I have listed my 10 top popular posts. Unfortunately the list somehow does not reflect the true stats, that of the posts most read. Currently Deceitful Durian of Discord is listed as the most read post.

Hagar and Ishmael expelled because Sarah was jealous

It should be Why 'God' loved Isaac more than Ishmael which has many thousands of hits more than the one above.

I tried refreshing the blog including republishing Why 'God' loved Isaac more than Ishmael to make it appear correctly as No 1, but alas all my efforts failed to work.

[Even this post should be No 4 but as can be seen, does not even appear among the top 10]

I'm going to take a leaf out of someone's book (or tactics) wakakaka and blame the Illuminati for suppressing its appearance as my 2nd most read post, because the post is uncomplimentary to Israel's so-called greatest 'hero', David, who in reality was an evil murderous treasonous and adulterous villain. Wakakaka.

Incidentally, on the topic of Ishmael and Isaac, Muslims believe that Abraham sacrificed Ishmael rather than Isaac to the Hebrew god. Though the Bible (Genesis 22:2) mentioned Isaac's name as follows:

And it came to pass after these things, that God did tempt Abraham, and said unto him, Abraham: and he said, Behold, here I am. 
And he said, Take now thy son, thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and get thee into the land of Moriah; and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of.

... we need to remember the Bible was written by Judeans (Israelites), and not Muslims, so naturally the Judeans wanted the singular honour to be that of Isaac rather than the son of a slave in Abraham's household.

But note the words thine only son which in itself betrayed the truth, because Ishmael could be such an 'only son', whereas Isaac was yet to be born.

Once Isaac was born, Abraham had two sons where there was no more 'only son'.

Abraham with his two sons, Ishmael & Isaac 

The three Abraham religions do not dispute that Ishmael was born before Isaac, so Isaac could NOT be Abraham's 'only son'. But Ishmael was!

However the Judeo-Christian argument has been that Ishmael was the son of Hagar, a slave and a concubine who was not a free woman nor loved, and therefore could not be considered as Abraham's son, let alone 'only son'.

Thus, based on their flimsy partisan beliefs, they ruled out Ishmael as Abraham's 'only son'.

more importantly, note how the Judeans (from the line of Jacob and then Judah) marginalised Esau and his descendants in a Ketuanan Israelite move, turning Edomites (descendants of Esau) from Jews into Arabs even though Esau and Jacob were twins of same parents, Isaac and Rebecca

In my post Why 'God' loved Isaac more than Ishmael I wrote that:

The Hebrew Bible (Tanakh) was written by various people but mainly by (though not all) Davidic supporters (obviously of the House of Judah). ‘Davidic’ supporters mean supporters of King David
, the most evil and treacherous man in the entire bible, and who was of the House of Judah [...]

David was also guilty of many other crimes including consorting treasonably with Israel’s enemies, the Philistines, against Israel.
In the way that the New Testament would not have been written if there was no Yehoshua ben Yusof (guess who he was?), the Tanakh would not have thus been written if there was no David.

David's supporters wrote the Tanakh principally to exonerate his many crimes, themselves knowing of his many crimes and sins. Fortunately for posterity they weren't the only writers of the Tanakh, hence through the writings of those who weren't his supporters, we catch glimpses of his evil as well as the treachery of his cheating ancestor, Jacob who was subsequently known as Israel in the Old Testament.


With such biased authorship, needless to say, we would have Judean (Israelite) disparagement against Ishmael's mom (slave, concubine) and thus his pedigree within the Abraham household, that he wasn't Abraham's 'son' whereas Isaac was.

And if anyone wants to argue that Hagar was not a wife but only a concubine, please read Genesis 16:2-3 which states:

And Sarai said unto Abram, Behold now, the Lord hath restrained me from bearing: I pray thee, go in unto my maid; it may be that I may obtain children by her. And Abram hearkened to the voice of Sarai. 
And Sarai Abram's wife took Hagar her maid the Egyptian, after Abram had dwelt ten years in the land of Canaan, and gave her to her husband Abram to be his wife.

Indeed Hagar was the wife of Abraham (or at that time Abram while Sarah was then Sarai), and therefore Ishmael was the son of Abraham.

sorry Hagar baby, you have to go 'coz Sarah is green-eyed but worse is yet to come when her descendants would with invincible bias write of your son as not being my son contrary to Hebrew laws - it'd be their ketuanan bull

The Judeo-Christian tradition has been very biased, even ironically unto ignoring Hebraic laws. which tells us in Deuteronomy 21:15-17, that::

If a man has two wives, and he loves one but not the other, and both bear him sons but the firstborn is the son of the wife he does not love, when he wills his property to his sons, he must not give the rights of the firstborn to the son of the wife he loves in preference to his actual firstborn, the son of the wife he does not love.
He must acknowledge the son of his unloved wife as the firstborn by giving him a double share of all he has. That son is the first sign of his father’s strength. The right of the firstborn belongs to him.

So, hasn't 
Deuteronomy 21:15-17, a Hebrew law (not an Islamic one), been very very clear about the very legitimate status of Ishmael in the eyes of God as compared to Isaac's?

Now, it could well be that was how Abraham treated Ishmael, in accordance with Hebraic laws, but leave it to those prejudiced Israelite authors who wrote bout Isaac being Abraham's 'only son' some 1300 years after Abraham passed away, effectively to change Ishmael status and to confer upon Isaac the honour of being Abraham's sacrifice to their Hebrew god.

As I explained in
 Why 'God' loved Isaac more than Ishmael we have biblical commentators who would even say the idea of firstborn in the Bible (as per Deuteronomy 21:15-17) is often a position of pre-eminence, not necessarily meaning 'first out of the womb'. Wakakaka, what utter ass-shit.

see if you believe the above Christian crap where the descendants of Ishmael even in trusting in good deeds would be in bondage to sin and rejected by (presumably the Christian) god

Thus, by Judean (Israelite) 'creative' biblical composition, David enjoyed the position of firstborn, even though he was the youngest of Jesse's eight sons. By David's deliberately 'created' eminent birth, he was 'conferred' a status which then deemed him fit to be King of Israel - all conveniently written by David's men (not God, wakakaka).

But you know, regardless of whether it was Ishmael or Isaac who was sacrificed by Abraham, the boy was killed.

There was no angel interceding at the very last minute a la the US 7th Calvary to save the human sacrifice. Biblical scholars believe Abraham sembileh his son. And if the son was the 'only son' then it would have been Ishmael. But on the other hand it could well be Isaac.

Richard Elliott Friedman, a biblical scholar and the Ann & Jay Davis Professor of Jewish Studies at the University of Georgia was one of at least two (Jewish) biblical authors who told us what had likely happened to Isaac or Ishmael. The other biblical scholar has been Tzemah Yoreh.

Putting aside for a moment the argument whether it was Ishmael or Isaac who was the human sacrifice, Friedman wrote his seven reasons why he believes Abraham killed his son at the sacrificial altar, as follows:

sorry son, all Hebrew first born automatically belongs to YHWH and He wants you now

1. In the original sources that come to make up the Torah, Gen 22 is attributed to an author from the Northern Kingdom, nicknamed “E” because he refers to God as Elohim, in contrast to “J” who refers to God as Jehovah, or Yahweh in contemporary use. 

In Gen 22:1-10, God is called Elohim, but suddenly an “angel of Yahweh” appears to save Isaac.

2. Gen 22:11-15, when Isaac is rescued by the Angel of Yahweh, also discusses how Abraham names the site after Yahweh in his honor.

3. In 22:16, “he” (is this the angel or Elohim?) praises Abraham because “you did this thing and didn't withhold your son.” 

What?!? This seems to describe a moment after which Isaac had been killed. It could refer, of course, to Abraham’s willingness, but it could also mean that he did it.

4. The story concludes with Abraham returning home, without any mention of Isaac.

Tzemah Yoreh confirmed the above oddity of 2 (Abraham and son) going out but only one returning.

5. In all of the other writings attributed to “E,” Isaac never again shows up. In fact, the traditions about Isaac even in the other texts are pretty meagre compared to Abraham, Jacob, and Joseph.

6. Exodus 24, also from E, presents the story of a revelation at Mount Horeb which has multiple parallels with Gen 22, except that none are found in v. 11-15.

7. There are some midrashic stories that say that Isaac was sacrificed. I personally consider this to be pretty weak evidence since the editing of the Torah took place long before midrashim start showing up on this story, but it nevertheless represents the idea that at least for some, the idea of God actually asking that Abraham sacrificed Isaac was not out of the question.

Tzemah Yoreh added:

In verse 12, after staying Abraham’s knife-wielding hand in mid-air, the angel of God tells the father of monotheism, “I now know you fear God because you have not withheld your son, your only son, from me.”

That phrase, “have not withheld your son,” “could indicate Abraham was merely willing to sacrifice his son, or that he actually did so.”

One hint that it may have been the latter is contained in the names for God used in the story. The Biblical text calls the God who instructs Abraham to sacrifice his son “Elohim”. Only when the “angel of God” leaps to Isaac’s rescue does God’s name suddenly change to the four-letter YHWH, a name Jews traditionally do not speak out loud.

Elohim commands the sacrifice; YHWH stops it. But it is once again Elohim who approves of Abraham for having “not withheld your son from me.”

These sorts of variations, rampant throughout the Bible, have led scholars to conclude that different names for God are used by different storylines and editors.

Indeed, Isaac is never again mentioned in an Elohim storyline. In fact, if you only read the parts of Isaac’s life that use the name Elohim, you don’t have to be a Bible scholar to see the story as one in which Isaac is killed in the sacrifice and disappears completely from the Biblical story.

Not that the YHWH portions make much of an effort to bring him back to life either. Yes, Isaac seems to fade after the sacrifice, with his life story told in just one chapter, compared to more than a dozen chapters for both Abraham and Jacob.

So based on Friedman's and Yoreh's analyses, the author of J changed the biblical narration by inserting a J tale to show that an angel saved Isaac (or Ishmael) at the very last minute. The aim of the redaction was to reflect subsequent (1300 years later) Judean rejection of child sacrifice.

whoa there buddy, I'm the US "J" 7th Cavalry

Why is there a leitmotiv in the bible surrounding Abraham and Sarah, of the man and wife pretending to be brother and sister, of a Pharaoh or King taking (or attempting to take) the wife, of God then intervening to return the wife to the husband, and of the husband profiting greatly from the separation? The leitmotiv may be discerned in:
  • Abraham and the Pharaoh (Genesis 12:11-20)
  • Abraham and Abimelech of Gerar (Genesis 20:2-18) – Sarah was even older by then, around 90.
  • Isaac and Abimelech of Gerar (Genesis 26: 7-16) – we aren't too sure whether this was the same Abimelech for it was then more than 50 years later, but the King had a chief captain of the army named Phichol (Genesis 26:26) as was in the case of the earlier or Abraham’s Abimelech (Genesis 21:22).
If it was the same Abimelech, then it would suggest that Abraham and Isaac could well be the same person.

Read the last sentence above, which says it would suggest that Abraham and Isaac could well be the same person.

When Abraham sacrificed Isaac (or Ishmael) as a human offering to his Hebrew god, the above observed leitmotiv serves the story gnam gnam, in which Abraham (rather than a dead Isaac/Ishmael) was the father (and not grandfather) of Jacob. Thus the leitmotiv pointed to an Abraham experience rather than that of both Abraham and Isaac.

If we read the Old Testament we would discover that the Hebrew god liked human sacrifice, preferably burnt in a ceremony called olah, with the most notorious being Jephthat sacrificing his daughter to YHWH (Judges 11:29-40) and the most numerous being either all the first born of Egypt (Exodus 12:29) or those burnt by King Josiah - And he slew all the priests of the high places that were there upon the altars, and burned men's bones upon them, and returned to Jerusalem - (2 Kings 23:20).

We return to the question: was it Ishmael or Isaac that Abraham sembileh? Think about it. 

A wee after-note digression here - Some scholars believe Saul's seven sons were similarly given as sacrificial offerings by their arch-foe King David (usurper of Saul's throne) to the Gibeonites (2 Samuel 21:1-14), though they admitted the biblical phraseology is less explicit but other indications, however, point in the same direction (of human sacrificial offerings).

But whichever, it was still essentially a David's evil act of ‘charm ch’ow tnooi keen’* which means chop/rid the grass, break/eliminate the roots. 

* (斩草不除根,春风吹又生 or in pinyin: zhǎn cǎo bù chú gēn, chūn fēng chuī yòu shēng)

The Chinese maxim literally translates into ‘cut the grass by severing its roots’, advising that to rid the grass forever, so that they’ll sprout no more; one must destroy the roots.

Thus, the saying as applicable to the biblical David's case means destroying the House of Saul totally and thoroughly by eliminating the Saulide family's potential for comeback, in other words, a genocidal intent in the elimination of all members of Saul's family to prevent future vendetta.


  1. Absolutely irrelevance !
    Chinese are never happier with their very own YU HUANG DA DI !

  2. “We return to the question: was it Ishmael or Isaac that Abraham sembileh?”

    Abraham’s son Isaac was born 14 years after Ishmael was born. Ishmael was born when Abraham was 86 years old. Isaac was born when Abraham was 100 years old.

    The 'sembelih' or sacrifice was done at Bukit Marwah in Mekah. Abraham left Ishmael and her mother (Hajar) in what is today Hijr Ishmael - a place where Abraham constructed a shelter for Ishmael. It is now the crescent part of the Kaabah in Mekah where the Muslims circumambulate/circumnavigate when they are in Mekah.

    There was no life at Mekah at that time – hot, dry and barren. Abraham left Ismael and Hajar there and went back to live with his first wife Sarah in Palestine.

    God then sent Angel Gabriel to take care of Ishmael and Hajar and it was during this time that the water from zamzam started to gush until today.

    Abraham came back to see Ishmael in Mekah, and had a dream the he should ‘sembelih’ Ishmael.

    “But you know, regardless of whether it was Ishmael or Isaac who was sacrificed by Abraham, the boy was killed.”

    NO. Ishmael was not killed. Abraham’s knife became blunted and Abraham cannot ‘sembelih’ Ishmael even though Abraham tried to ‘sembelih’ Ishmael again and again.
    Then, Allah sent down a ‘wahyu’ to Abraham to replace Ishmael with a goat. Abraham then ‘sembelih’ the goat.

    This incidence became what it is today Hari Raya Korban or Hari Raya Haji or Hari Raya Aidil Adha. (I will be celebrating this raya soon on 5 October).

    It was after this event that Abraham received another ‘wahyu’ from God that his wife Sarah would give him a son Isaac who would have a son Jacob and who would have a son Joseph. Yesus (Jesus) came from this line, while Muhammad was a descendant of Ishmael.

    To Isaac HE gives Christianity: To Ishmael HE gives Islam. God loves Isaac more or Ishmael more?

    - hasan

  3. KT gia, what's yr intention of continuing yr favourite past time of bashing Israel (indirectly) by trying hard to correct cerita donggeng from these Abrahamic faiths?

    No matter, what arguments, u & those religious scholars put forward, it seems that ALL these 'learned' sotongs r theorizing based on heresays!

    Hello there, u guys got nothing better to do? Or r u been paid to do these?

    One of the PRIME reason that the world is now full of hatred & wars, is bcoz religious blur-sotongs, out there, r been fed lies upon lies, to prove that their devoted faith is the ONLY TRUTH. All others believes r blasphemy, & pagan & kaffirs r deserved to go to hell!

    This is purely a perpetual one-up show!

    & yet, as a self-proclaimed atheist, yr continuous indulgent in this Abrahamic propagation is puzzling.

    Unless yr hidden goal is just like what u hinted - '..most read post.'!

    Er.. readership earns Adsense income, just like what Ms Muppet is trying hard to garner? No?

    But KT should has more gaya, so, what's the take for u - to promote atheism, indirectly replacing an Almighty Being with a NON-entity?

    Aint they the same - worshiping of something that cant be defined?

    Perhaps, this is the sign of going bonga after taking too much red herring sushi!

    1. Adsense? mana kt ada? wakakaka

    2. Got u, sucker!

      After yr wakakaking do read that next paragraph about yr gaya.

      Ei-yah....U r indeed one hell of a vainglorious seeker just like yr sifu. Unlike his glass-minted, yr pride & ego seem to be iron-clapped.

      Or could it be more correctly to say that underneath that wakakaking, is a silent sob?

      BTW, can move on to 'dissect' that latest piece of bull, by yr sifu, about his mis-interpretation of 'appreciating the Chinese resolve'?

      U would get most hits to boost yr ego as a lot of our responses have been 'binned' by him just like that famous Bermuda triangle when commenting on his blog.

      Cant or not? Game?

    3. I blog for fun (and to practice my writing skills), and not for hits or revenue wakakaka, tho' admittedly 'hits' do indicate both my writing skills and post presentation

      aiyoyo, how did I turn out to be a "silent sob"? whatever that means, wakakaka


    Female warriors scare the hell out of ISIS.

    One of the great motivators for the Jihadis is that if they are Shaheed (martyred) in combat, they get a get a straight ticket to Paradise.
    There awaits a bevy of Perfect Houris to serve their every need and want.

    As with everything in life, Terms and Conditions apply.

    If they are killed by a woman , the whole deal is invalid. They just die and go to Hell, like everybody else........

    The Peshmerga have deployed female snipers, dealing death unseen from afar.
    And now the UAE with female jet pilots.....

    These women scare the hell out of the Jihadis...

  5. Do you think that the Abrahamic faiths/religions have the rather regrettable traits of tribalism, insularity, divisiveness/exclusiveness (meaning rejection of those not of their faith), intolerance, and aloofness towards other people outside of their belief system?

    This is to say, it is somewhat akin to President Bush's doctrine of "Either you are with us or you are against us". Thus, quite possibly they regard those not from their religion as aliens, outsiders, unworthy of associating with, and inferior; and any interaction and friendship can only be on a superficial level.

    1. Doctrine of "Either you are with us or you are against us".

      It is Bush who said those words… not the scriptures. Hence, it is the people who make religion difficult as a result of their many doctrines… not Abraham, or Isaac, or Jacob, or Joseph, or Jesus, or Ishmael, or Muhammad or God.

      - hasan

    2. @ Hasan,
      I quite like what you say -- very sensible and observant.

    3. Much obliged, Anon.

      - hasan

  6. Here's the Alternate Bible or Alternate Koran.

    A bloodthirsty God turned one of Abraham's sons into a cow, and he was forced to Slaughter or "Sembelih" one of his sons to appease the vengeful God.

    Now which son was it ?

    Obviously I'm not a believer of one of the Abrahamaic religions.

    1. I can guarantee you it was neither Isaac nor Ishmael. Alternate to the Bible or Quran? Is it from the Hinduism scriptures? :-)

      - hasan

  7. To be really honest, as an outsider, I find it very difficult to respect any one of the Abrahamaic religions.

    1. It is normal. Most of us do not like what the mosque or church teaches.

      - hasan

  8. "Our situation is this: most of the people in this world believe that the Creator of the universe has written a book. We have the misfortune of having many such books on hand, each making an exclusive claim as to its infallibility. People tend to organize themselves into factions according to which of these incompatible claims they accept—rather than on the basis of language, skin color, location of birth, or any other criterion of tribalism. Each of these texts urges its readers to adopt a variety of beliefs and practices, some of which are benign, many of which are not. All are in perverse agreement on one point of fundamental importance, however: “respect” for other faiths, or for the views of unbelievers, is not an attitude that God endorses. While all faiths have been touched, here and there, by the spirit of ecumenicalism, the central tenet of every religious tradition is that all others are mere repositories of error or, at best, dangerously incomplete. Intolerance is thus intrinsic to every creed. Once a person believes—really believes—that certain ideas can lead to eternal happiness, or to its antithesis, he cannot tolerate the possibility that the people he loves might be led astray by the blandishments of unbelievers. Certainty about the next life is simply incompatible with tolerance in this one.".....Excerpt from The End of All Faiths

    1. Thanks for sharing this here. There are some good points here.

  9. Ktemoc, As a Penang lang, I just like this article on the falsification of the Bible by the Hebrews. Indeed, the sending away of Hagar and Ishmael appears to be false. From the narrative, it would seem that Abraham and Isaac ceased contact with Hagar and Ishmael from the day those two were sent away. But in Genesis 25:9, "Isaac and Ishmael buried him in the cave of Machpelah near Mamre". Also in Genesis 21:15, "When the water in the skin was gone, she put the boy under one of the bushes" Come on, the boy was 14 years old and probably as tall as his mother. (Your pictures show him as half the size of his mother!) No way he would be so helpless that the mother would put him like a baby under the bushes.And no way Abraham would give them just a bit of water when sending them off. No less a person than GOD himself accused the Hebrews of falsifying His words. (Jeremiah 8:8 "How can you say 'We are wise, for we have the law of the Lord, when actually the lying pen of the scribes has handled it falsely' "

    1. as I mentioned in my previous post on same topic there's a lot of "creative" redaction in the old testament by the Judah-ites (followers of David) to make David look good when he was in reality a most evil man

  10. So many books claiming to be The Ultimate Truth.
    Its stands to logic that no more than one, maybe none at all can be True.

    Which one to believer , huh ?

    My own pet theory - we are still awating the Final Revelation.

  11. Yesterday was the birthday of Jesus.

    BTW, for quite a long time Muhammad/Muslims were facing Baitul-Maqdis in Jerusalem when they were praying, until Muhammad received a 'wahyu' from God to change the direction of their prayers to face Baitul-Haram in Mekah.

    - hasan