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Sunday, 14 December 2014

Animal Sacrifices in The Apocalypse of Abraham

The Apocalypse of Abraham, a book rejected by orthodox Jewry, has the early followers sacrificing animals to demons and performing meal offerings to them. The animals were heifers and calves.

Abraham helped his father burning animals sacrifices to the gods of his father, Terah.

In the Apocalypse of Abraham we find the following:

On the day when I planed the gods of my father3 Terah and the gods of Nahor his brother,4 when I was searching as to who the Mighty God in truth is—I, Abraham, at the time when it fell to my lot, when I fulfilled the services (the sacrifices5) of my father Terah to his gods of wood and stone, gold and silver, brass and iron;6 having entered into their temple for service, I found the god whose name was Merumath7 (which was) hewn out of stone, fallen forward at the feet of the iron god Nahon.

Services (sacrifices) can also mean the altar for sacrifices (Bonwetsch). They built an altar for animal sacrifices offered up to idols. Abraham became convinced he was serving false gods began to seek after the true God.

God commanded Abraham to offer an animal sacrifice before he allowed him to witness the mysteries of God. This was not done for blood atonement which is a later doctrine added by Judaism and carried on within Christianity.

Continuing The Apocalypse of Abraham::

Then a voice came to me speaking twice: “Abraham, Abraham!” And I said: “Here am I!” And He said: “Behold, it is I; fear not, for I am before the worlds, and a mighty God who hath created the light of the world. I am a shield over thee, and I am thy helper. Go, take me a young heifer of three years old, and a she-goat of three years old, and a ram of three years old, and a turtledove and a pigeon, and bring me a pure sacrifice. And in this sacrifice I will lay before thee the ages (to come), and make known to thee what is reserved, and thou shalt see great things which thou hast not seen (hitherto); because thou hast loved to search me out, and I have named thee my Friend. But abstain from every form of food that proceedeth out of the fire, and from the drinking of wine, and from anointing (thyself) with oil, forty days,” and then set forth for me the sacrifice which I have commanded thee, in the place which I will shew thee, on a high mountain, and there I will shew thee the ages which have been created and established, 11made and renewed, by my Word, and I will make known to thee what shall come to pass in them on those who have done evil and (practised) righteousness in thegeneration of men.

Abraham obeyed God by sacrificing "(animals)—the young heifer, and the she-goat, and the ram, and the turtle-dove,". Abraham knew the difference between clean and unclean animals. He must have been instructed prior to this event on God's laws.

While Abraham was waiting for the evening sacrifice, " And there flew an unclean bird down upon the carcasses, and I drove it away. And the unclean bird spake to me, and said: “What doest thou, Abraham, upon the holy Heights, where no man eateth or drinketh, neither is there upon them (any) food of man, but these1 consume everything with fire, and (will) burn thee up. 2Forsake the man, who is with thee, and flee; for if thou ascendest to the Heights they will make an end of thee.2 And it came to pass, when I saw the bird speak, I said to the angel: “What is this, my lord?” And he said: “This is ungodliness,3 this is Azazel.”

Azazel did not want Abraham to ascend into the heavens to discover God's mysteries. Abraham went up to heaven on the right wing of a pigeon.

Human Sacrifice Foreseen

Abraham sees that human sacrifice would be used. These are also described in black magic books. Crowley writes about it, and also the Satanic Bible has a chapter on human sacrifice. The Bible mentions it in the book of Jeremiah and many other prophets talks about the blood sacrifices which would take place.

From the Apocalypse of Abraham:

I saw there the likeness of the idol of jealousy, having the likeness of woodwork such as my father was wont to make, and its statue was of glittering bronze; and before it a man, and he worshipped it; and in front of him an altar, and upon it a boy slain in the presence of the idol. But I said to Him: “What is this idol, or what is the altar, or who are they that are sacrificed, or who is the sacrificer? Or what is the Temple which I see that is beautiful in art, and its beauty (being like) the glory that lieth beneath Thy throne?”

God answered Abraham calling this Temple cult, offering, "murderous sacrifices, of which are a witness to me of the final judgement, even at the beginning of creation.” Abraham would see what the prophets later wrote about.

Meal Offerings to the Gods

We learn Terah "worshipped the gods, and offered sacrifices before them, calves, and heifers, and performed everything well -pleasing to the Devil." Not only were they offering animals to demons, meal offerings were also given to the gods.

From The Apocalypse of Abraham:

One day a woman brought a meal-offering for the idols, and as they would not eat he exclaimed: A mouth have they but speak not, eyes have they but see not, ears but hear not, hands but handle not. May their makers be like them, and all who trust in them (Ps . cxv. 5-8); and he broke them in pieces, and burned them. Abraham was thereupon brought before Nimrod, who said: “Knowest thou not that I am god, and ruler of the world? Why hast thou destroyed my images?” Abraham replied: “If thou art god and ruler of the world, why dost thou not cause the sun to rise in the west and set in the east? If thou art god and ruler of the world, tell me all that I have now at heart, and what I shall do in the future?” Nimrod was dumbfounded, and Abraham continued: “Thou art the son of Cush, a mortal man. Thou couldst not save thy father from death, nor wilt thou thyself escape it.”

Throughout the Apocalypse of Abraham we do not get any specific instructions about blood sacrifices for make atonement for sin. God instructed animal sacrifices for "purification" purposes so that Abraham could ascend into the Seven heavens. This gospel cannot be used to justify the blood atonement doctrine. The book of Jeremiah reveals that animal sacrifices for blood atonement is a later addition. The time would come when human sacrifice would take place to appease the gods. The ancient prophets talked about this and rightly condemned such heathen practices. Blood atonement would be written into our culture through Judaism and later carried on by the Christian church.

The Holy Quran denies blood atonement for sins. It is for this reason we also reject it. Animal sacrifices are mentioned in the Holy Quran. They are mentioned in Surah 22. This is the Hajj chapter. This is a pilgrimage made to the Kaba which believers are expected to do in their life time.

Animal Sacrifice in Islam

Animals are sacrificed during the hajj but these were to be food for the pilgrims. We learn this in Surah 22:36, "... eat thereof, and feed the poor who does not ask and the beggar who asks". The sacrifices are purely for food. God makes this plain in the following surah:

"It is neither their meat nor their blood that reaches God, but it is piety from you that reaches Him" (Surah 22:37)

The blood of animals does not reach God. Their blood is not an atonement. The sacrifices of animals are used for food purposes giving thanks to the Creator who sustains us.

Similar injunctions are in the Torah where God commands people to sacrifice animals and eat them in the place where God chooses to place his name (Deuteronomy 12). Males were to appear at the place where God choses three times a year (Deut 16:16). The tithe was to be used as food during at the place God chooses (Deut 14:22-29). People were to "eat there before the Lord" (Deut 14:26). The pilgrim festivals of Israel also involved animal sacrifices where the animals were to be food for the pilgrims. The tithe was used to provide the income to help observe the festival.

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