May Rapiu, King of Eternity, drink wine, yea, may he drink, the powerful and noble [god], the god enthroned in Athtarat [Ashtaroth], the god who rules in Edrei.[i]We mentioned this entity earlier. At the time of the conquest, the Canaanites believed a god named Rapi’u, the singular form of Rephaim, ruled the underworld from exactly the same two cities in Bashan that were the center of Og’s kingdom. The text cited above appears to be a ritual inviting a number of deities, including the war-goddess Anat and plague-god Resheph, to a feast at which Rapi’u asks Baal to “transmit the powers of the Rapaʾūma [Rephaim] to the living king.”[ii] There’s more. The home city of Rapi’u, Ashtaroth, identifies the King of Eternity with a mysterious god whose career we traced in a previous chapter:
Mother Šapšu, take a message To Milku in ʿAṯtartu [Ashtaroth]: “My incantation for serpent bite, For the scaly serpent’s poison.”[iii]Mother Šapšu was the sun-goddess in Ugarit. In this ritual, she was asked to carry a message to a god of the underworld ruling in Ashtaroth—Milku, which was another form of the name Molech. ARTICLE CONTINUES BELOW VIDEOS
WATCH PARTS 1 – 4 OF THE NEW “GODS OF WAR” INTERVIEWS!In short, Bashan was the entrance to the Amorite underworld. Og was its king, the last of the remnant of the living Rephaim. But Og had the power of the dead Rephaim on his side, or so he thought, and that’s why he had to go. To be sure his readers knew just how evil Og was, Moses gave us the dimensions of Og’s bed: Nine cubits by four cubits, or about thirteen and one-half feet by six. So, Og was a giant, right? Not necessarily. Yes, the Rephaim had a reputation, and there are definite connections between the Rephaim and the pre-Flood Nephilim giants. But that connection may be mostly spiritual—as in occultic and demonic. That’s the point Moses was making in Deuteronomy. As I wrote in The Great Inception:
Every year at the first new moon after the spring equinox, Babylon held a new year festival called the akitu. It was a twelve-day celebration of the cycle of regeneration, the beginning of a new planting season, and it included a commemoration of Marduk’s victory over Tiamat. The entire celebration, from Yahweh’s perspective, was a long ritual for “new gods that had come recently”[iv] involving all manner of licentious behavior.The highlight of the festival was the Divine Union or Sacred Marriage, where Marduk and his consort, Sarpanit, retired to the cult bed inside the Etemenanki, the House of the Foundation of Heaven and Earth, the great ziggurat of Babylon. Although scholars still debate whether the Sacred Marriage was actually performed by the king and a priestess, it didn’t matter to Yahweh. The idea that a bountiful harvest in the coming year depended on celebrating Marduk’s sacred roll in the sack was abhorrent. Now, here’s the key point: Guess how big Marduk’s bed was?
“…nine cubits [its long] side, four cubits [its] front, the bed; the throne in front of the bed.”[v]Nine cubits by four cubits. Precisely the same dimensions as the bed of Og. That is why Moses included that curious detail! It wasn’t a reference to Og’s height; Moses was making sure his readers understood that the Amorite king Og, like the Amorite kings of Babylon, was carrying on pre-flood occult traditions brought to earth by the Watchers.[vi] If all that mumbo-jumbo about an underworld god ruling Bashan had been invented by the priests of the Amorites, then God might have ignored Og. From a military or economic perspective, Bashan, which roughly covered the modern Golan Heights, wasn’t exactly Babylon, Egypt, or Assyria. There was no strategic benefit to picking that fight. The goal was Canaan, west of the Jordan. Fighting Og meant marching a couple million people with flocks and herds to the north end of the Jordan valley, fighting a battle, and then turning around and marching back south to cross the river near Jericho. Why do it, if Og was nothing more than a local warlord? Why give the Amorites west of the Jordan more time to prepare their defenses? The Bible doesn’t say so specifically, but in the context of what the Amorite neighbors of Israel believed about Bashan, the gods who lived there, and the spiritual power of the Rephaim, it seems clear that this was more than just a fight for control of some real estate. This was war in the spirit realm. Just as Yahweh humiliated Baal at the Red Sea forty years earlier, the Battle of Edrei against Og of Bashan was a clear message to the “warriors of Baal,” the Rephaim. And their allies in Canaan were next.
[i] KTU 1.108:1–3. Translation by Wyatt, N. (2002). Religious Texts from Ugarit (2nd ed.) (London; New York: Sheffield Academic Press), p. 395. [ii] Pardee, D., & Lewis, T. J. (2002). Ritual and Cult at Ugarit (Vol. 10). (Atlanta, GA: Society of Biblical Literature), p. 193. [iii] RS 24:244:40–41. Translation by Pardee and Lewis, op. cit., p. 177. Ugaritic text RS 24:251:42′ likewise places the god Milku in Ashtaroth. [iv] Deuteronomy 32:17. [v] Veijola, T. (2003).. “King Og’s Iron Bed (Deut 3:11): Once Again,” Studies in the Hebrew Bible, Qumran, and the Septuagint (ed. Peter W. Flint et al.; VTSup 101; Leiden/Boston: Brill), p. 63. [vi] Gilbert, D. (2017). “The Great Inception Part 7: Iniquity of the Amorites—Babylon, Og, and the Angels Who Sinned.” The Great Inception. http://www.thegreatinception.com/long-war/the-great-inception-part-7-iniquity-of-the-amorites-babylon-og-and-the-angels-who-sinned/, retrieved 2/26/18.