Genocide in the Old Testament

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Level: BasicNumber of Lessons: 5Avg. Length: 14 Min.Time Required: 3 Hours MinimumCEUs: .3Course Code: OT015
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Have you or those you know ever struggled with your view of the God of the Old Testament? Is He a God of tender mercy and peace? Or is He a vengeful God of wrath and destruction? In this course, Dr. Richard Hess from Denver Seminary provides an in-depth exploration of the seemingly most violent parts of the Old Testament through analysis of biblical texts and historical artifacts. Discover what these pieces of Old Testament history reveal to us about God’s true nature.

The class was developed in collaboration with Denver Seminary faculty.


  • Discuss why the God of the Old Testament is not a God of destruction but one of mercy and salvation.
  • Explain what the story of the flood in Genesis reveals about God’s true nature.
  • Explain how the story of Joseph provides a context for the conquest of Canaan.
  • Discuss, in detail, the conquests of Jericho and Ai and what we know about these cities and the people who lived there.
  • Explain the nature of the major battles fought in Canaan.
  • Address the issue of noncombatants in the Canaanite cities destroyed by Joshua’s army.
Richard Hess, PhD
  • Hebrew Union College, PhD
  • Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, MDiv and ThM
  • Wheaton College, BA

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