I loved this book by Jack Miles and read it twice.
Dennis Prager, however, was not a fan.
Numbers 14: 11-12 says: “The LORD said to Moses, “How long will these people treat me with contempt? How long will they refuse to believe in me, in spite of all the miraculous signs I have performed among them? 12 I will strike them down with a plague and destroy them, but I will make you into a nation greater and stronger than they.”
In his 2001 lecture on Numbers 14:17 – 15:31, Dennis Prager says: I differ with those who say this is typical Old Testament primitive understanding of God. It is the sophisticate’s notion that God matures as you go through the Old Testament. I don’t buy that.
These things bothers those with PhDs. They believe that God should’ve spoken in a more sophisticated way: I hear the complaints of the Israelites but I understand the psychological impotence that makes them this way. I understand the mentality that slavery develops.
This would be regarded by those who think that God grows up as very mature.
God’s reaction is for a primitive people. If God had responded in that PhD way, they wouldn’t have learned anything. A super-sophisticated parent raises a neurotic child. It is the Jews who are primitive, not God.
God can’t give a 21st century response to 1200 BCE people. This is it. This is direct. This is how they learn.