You don't think mass genocide, human sacrifice, slavery, infanticide, and rape are barbaric or evil? What could be more barbaric than those? I won't assume you have read the whole bible but many of us here (including myself) have and find those "reasons" quite wrong and irrational. Have you read the passages in 1 Samuel 15 where God supposedly commands the slaying of women and children, or Psalm 127 where God supposedly says, "Blessed is he who dashes the little babies against the stone"? In Exodus 21 God allegedly sanctions slavery (owning people as property) and in Judges 11 God condones human sacrifice. Can you think of any situation where this would be morally OK? It would seem to me that if a sacrifice is required for wrong doing then God himself needs a sacrifice for his wrong doing. I do realize this will likely get us into discussing the Euthyphro Dilemma but that's OK.
A lot of those things were because the nations refused to worship the true God. They were all worshiping false gods and disobeying God. God gave them chance after chance after chance to repent but they did not do it. They knew the punishment was coming and they didn't care.
Any reasonable parent would stick to the punishment if their children broke the rules. Otherwise, the children will do whatever they want and that's not good. When you warn your child of what happens if they disobey, and they disobey you, you have to do what's necessary and punish them. This is why a judge doesn't say to a murderer in court, "Oh you murdered someone? No big deal. Go free." The judge must stick to the punishment.
If God is evil for enacting punishment, then judges are evil for sending people to prison. The people knew the risk they were taking, disobeyed the law anyway, and have to deal with the consequences. Don't blame the cops or judge.
If Jesus was God, and was the ultimate sacrifice, why didn't he stay dead? A real "sacrifice" would require a loss, don't you think? But in this story, God didn't lose himself did he? Can God lose anything? He didn't really even die b/c his real self was (supposedly) immaterial and lived on (isn't he supposed to be eternal?). Of course, I personally don't think any of this took place at all but I think it's important to think critically about these doctrines - especially when there is so much at stake. Don't you?
many generations of people lived in these cities and were not punished for their failure to believe in god. Then following millenia after millenia of business as usual, god sends jews in to sack your city and smash your babies on rocks.
People don't believe in god for many reasons, but one reason would be his apparent invisibility and the random nature of his punishment.
God is the example of bad parenting. Here is a god like conversation between a father and his children in the real world:
He tells Great Grandma that he is going to enforce the homework rule.
Grandma tells Billy, Sue, Joe and Elizabeth dad wants you to do your homework.
the next morning Grandma asks if they have done their homework. They yes but they have not done it. Sue gets a pimple however, because she is cute the teacher lets her make it up in class, Joe steals homework from some nerd gets an A, Sue Gets an F and dad knows they are all lying so he burns Elizabeth slowly to death by rigging her lamp to ignite her room on fire..
20 generations later in a house of people from the line of Joe "the bully", the kids don't believe in homework either so Great X20 Grandpa burns down their house with a 5 year old who did not do his coloring project, as well as the infant twins and the wife.
People wittness the fire, and learn
A) do your homework?
B) Tragedy strikes at random
C) I don't know?
A family journal is found telling the story of Great X21 Grandma's experience regarding homework and the lying and decides the fire was caused by Great X20 grand dad homework rule?