So….what do you all know about Baal? Did you ever wonder what all the fuss was about him?
I did some quick fact checking, and found out some very interesting, and quite frankly, sick stuff. Let me just put it this way; it’s no wonder God became so angry every time the Jews bowed to Baal. Here is a little history of the mythical character.
The great Baal was of Canaan. He was the son of El, the high god of Canaan. But what set Baal apart from every other false god was one fact. The myth of Baal is that he died, and was resurrected. Now, who does that sound like?
It gets worse. Baal had a great rivalry, or conflict, with Mot, the god of “death”. When he announced that he would no longer acknowledge Mot, he went too far. Apparently. Mot plotted against Baal, and lured him to his abode to taste his fare, “mud”. Baal was terrified, but was unable to avoid the summons of Mot, and seemingly perished.
Baal’s wife, Anat, however, assaulted Mot, and somehow, as I read it, must have convinced El, or Mot, to bring Baal back from the dead.
Baal, then, is a false forerunner of Christ, which would fit, since we know that among Satan’s greatest (or worst) acts are counterfeit gods and religions.
Baal was worshipped by the Canaanites, as previously mentioned, as well as the ancient Phoenicians, and the Israelites, as far back as the fourteenth century BC. He was predominantly known as the god of fertility, and emerged as the god of rain during later times. There is an interesting story here developing, if you care to go back into the Bible, and see that God shut up the rains during Elijah’s time for three years. Interesting, don’t you think, considering that Baal was the god of rain?
Baal has also been called Beelzebub. We know who we thought that was, don’t we?
Check out 1 Kings 18:20-46, which is the story of the great battle between God and Baal in ancient Israel, on Mount Carmel. See what God did to the prophets of Baal, and how he upheld His servant, Elijah.
Now, back to what I mentioned earlier about Israel angering God. One of the most obvious reasons would have to be what Baal represented, which was a false god whose worshippers claimed rose from the dead. Look at the battle between God and Baal on Mount Carmel again, and see why God dealt so strongly with His own people, especially with Baal’s prophets. What an amazing picture of how God handled the idea of another god being able to resurrect himself, or a being that was thought to be as powerful as the Almighty and Only God.
And it wasn’t just Baal’s resurrection that angered God. It was what Baal demanded of his worshippers. At times, his priests would worship him by dancing around his idol, working themselves into a frenzy, often cutting themselves with blades, and even going to the point of placing an infant into the arms of Baal, and lighting that infant on fire. But, it didn’t stop there. The prophets of Baal would then proceed to fornicate, literally to have sex to the sounds of the screaming, dying infant.
I am humbled tonight, by the love of God for such as us. After doing just a quick research on Baal, and finding what I did, I am amazed that God did not destroy the world then and there.
God’s people, the Israelites, joined in this. Does that not just blow your mind? And see how He made a fool of Baal, and of Baal’s prophets? I don’t know about you, but I am truly shaken from this study. Shaken to the core of my faith.
We MUST know a merciful God. How else can one explain His long suffering of Israel, and of us? How else, even without the appearance of Christ, do you explain that people still walk this earth?
Here is just a final piece of trivia for you. Guess who got rid of Baal in Israel? No, it wasn’t Jesus, nor was it John the Baptist.
It was the party of the Pharisees, who removed every evil idol from the land of Israel. Now doesn’t that just blow your mind completely?
May we all remember the reasons God had for wrath, and remain thankful that He chose to show mercy instead.