A response to 5.4

Who's will is stronger?

Mr. Al-Kadhi tells us that : "In Deuteronomy we read that Moses was not to disturb the children of Ammon nor attempt to take their land:"

Deuteronomy 2:17-19

17 the LORD said to me,
18 "Today you are to pass by the region of Moab at Ar.
19 When you come to the Ammonites, do not harass them or provoke them to war, for I will not give you possession of any land belonging to the Ammonites. I have given it as a possession to the descendants of Lot."

Deuteronomy 2:37

37 But in accordance with the command of the LORD our God, you did not encroach on any of the land of the Ammonites, neither the land along the course of the Jabbok nor that around the towns in the hills.

"Yet Joshua tells of how Moses gave the land of Ammon to Gad as an inheritance:"

Joshua 13:24-28

24 This is what Moses had given to the tribe of Gad, clan by clan:
25 The territory of Jazer, all the towns of Gilead and half the Ammonite country as far as Aroer, near Rabbah;
26 and from Heshbon to Ramath Mizpah and Betonim, and from Mahanaim to the territory of Debir;
27 and in the valley, Beth Haram, Beth Nimrah, Succoth and Zaphon with the rest of the realm of Sihon king of Heshbon (the east side of the Jordan, the territory up to the end of the Sea of Kinnereth).
28 These towns and their villages were the inheritance of the Gadites, clan by clan.

Mr. Al-Kadhi concludes: "God himself vowed to not give Moses (pbuh) even the smallest portion of the land of Ammon, yet Moses is now claimed to have taken it anyway (against God's will?) and given half of it to GC.E. [??.?, sic., a slip of Al-Kadhi's pen, maybe ...] Was this a slip of a scribe's pen? Is it a difference in "spelling"? Centuries of tampering with the word of God has left its mark."

Does this "prove" tampering with God's word or is this another case of Mr. Al-Kadhi's wishful thinking? When we carefully study the Biblical account of ancient history, we find that the Israelites obeyed God's word and did not disturb the Ammonites.

The Ammonites are indeed the descendants of Lot and his younger daughter through their son Ben-Ammi, whose name means "son of my people" (Genesis 19:38). In Deuteronomy 2:17-19 and 2:37, God told the Israelites not to distress the children of Ammon or meddle with them. The Ammonites, were related to the Moabites (both descend from Lot and his two daughter) and the territory of the Ammonites was directly north from that of Moab. The Ammonites took their territory from several small Canaanite tribes, the largest of which was the Zamzummins (whose name indicates that they were a band of giants), and the aboriginal Avims.

The region was invaded by the Amorites who took much of the territory controlled by the Ammonites. Joshua 12:2 tells us that "Sihon king of the Amorites, who reigned in Heshbon. He ruled from Aroer on the rim of the Arnon Gorge--from the middle of the gorge--to the Jabbok River, which is the border of the Ammonites. This included half of Gilead." The territory of the Ammonites was now greatly compressed, but, they still possessed the mountainous region beyond the Jabbok River (Joshua 11:2).

While the Israelites were wandering in the wilderness, they sent messengers to the Amorite King Sihon requesting permission to pass through his kingdom. Sihon not only refused, he attacked the Israelites and lost. The Israelites took his lands and stopped their march at the fortified borders of, what remained of, the Ammonite kingdom - obeying God's orders (Numbers 21:21-24 and Deuteronomy 2:32-34).

By the time went get to Joshua 13:25, the Ammonites had already lost a great amount of their territory to the Amorites who were, in turn, defeated by the Israelites. The Israelites were still under God's order not to disturb or meddle with the Ammonites and they continued to obey God's orders. Once again, please remember that the territory that Moses gave to the tribe of Gad was taken from the Amorites, who earlier (Joshua 12:2), took it from the Ammonites.

The portion allotted to the tribe of Gad was to the east of the Jordan, and was made up of half of Gilead (an area controlled by the Amorites, until they were defeated by the Israelites, and not the Ammonites (Joshua 12:2). Gilead was a region of great beauty and fertility (Deuteronomy 3:12). The territory given to the Gad was bounded on the east by the Arabian desert, on the west by the Jordan (Joshua 13:27), and on the north by the Jabbok River, the border of the Ammonites (Joshua 12:2). The land given to the Gad also included the whole of the Jordan valley as far north as to the Sea of Galilee, where it narrowed almost to a point.

Incidentally, after the tribe of Gad was carried into captivity, at the same time as the other tribes of the northern kingdom, by the Assyrian King Tiglath-Pileser (1 Chronicles 5:26) and during the time of Jeremiah (49:1), the cities of the Gad were re-inhabited by the Ammonites. In the end, the Israelites obeyed the will of God.

The Rebuttal to "What Did Jesus Really Say?"
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