As I have already stated in other posts dealing with Satan and his angel followers waging war with God, anyone would have to be a special brand of stupid to think they could win against, let alone throw down with an omnipotent creator.
This is just one of the many contradictions in the conventional Christian narrative:1) Resistance against Yahweh is not just futile, it is ridiculous.
2) There is resistance against Yahweh, waged by beings who have direct knowledge of his power (the Devil, his demons, the angelic defectors of Genesis 6).
Remember, in the context of the Christian narrative, these rebel angels have far superior knowledge of Yahweh, his power, nature, etc. to that of any humans--direct experience of living under his rule in Heaven. All believers have is the ability to read about Yahweh in a book, and maybe get a warm, fuzzy "feeling in their hearts." We can also add a third premise:3) This resistance has been successful for several thousand years at least.
Add to this the "fact" that only one third of the angels joined "Satan's" rebellion, i.e., Yahweh's angelic armies outnumber "Satan's" two to one. Yahweh's side still
hasn't won the "spiritual warfare" that's been going on for 2,000 years after Jesus supposedly triumphed on the Cross? Yahweh is clearly no Sun Tzu. The Bible actually contains abundant evidence that Yahweh, if he existed, would be far from omnipotent and invincible.
First of all, if you look at the passages that believers use to justify claims of Yahweh's supposed omnimax powers, you'll notice that they're always paeans of flowery, hyperbolic praise rather than straightforward philosophical/theological/scientific descriptions of Yahweh's nature. They're in the genre of the flattery a courtier offers when he's pressing his forehead to the floor before the throne of an Iron Age god-king. The passages that are putatively in Yahweh's own words are classic Mighty Oz braggadocio; again, not expressed in the form of philosophical/theological/scientific argumentation. Taken together, they're what we'd now refer to as advertizing copy. "Our God is so super big and powerful he can totally
beat up your gods!"
Yet, when we look at the narrative
passages that show Yahweh in action, we see a completely different picture. Since all of the books in the Bible were written by self-proclaimed servants and spokesmen for Yahweh, we can operate on the premise that the narrative passages will not be biased against Yahweh and portray him as any weaker than he "really is." So let's begin:The Tree of Life:
In Genesis 3, Yahweh drives Adam and Eve out of the Garden of Eden with a magic flaming sword in order to prevent them from partaking of the fruit of the Tree of Life. If they had done so, they would have completed the ascent to divinity that they'd begun with the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge. Yahweh's actions show that he would not have been able to reverse the effect, any more than he was able to reverse the effect of the Tree of Knowledge. He almost
suffered total defeat right from the start!The Tower of Babel:
The Tower of Babel story in Genesis 11 makes it clear that Yahweh fears human science and technology. While he demonstrates considerable power in his ability to confound human language, it also shows a major lack of foresight: his "Plan" for salvation is, after all, centered on the idea of humans spreading his "Word" around. The panoply of different human languages has proven to be such a roadblock that only a handful of scholars can actually read his "Word" in the languages it was originally written in.Beaten by a Moabite God:
Elisha said to the king of Israel, “What have I to do with you? Go to your father’s prophets or to your mother’s.” But the king of Israel said to him, “No; it is the Lord who has summoned us, three kings, only to be handed over to Moab.” Elisha said, “As the Lord of hosts lives, whom I serve, were it not that I have regard for King Jehoshaphat of Judah, I would give you neither a look nor a glance. But get me a musician.” And then, while the musician was playing, the power of the Lord came on him. And he said, “Thus says the Lord, ‘I will make this wadi full of pools.’ For thus says the Lord, ‘You shall see neither wind nor rain, but the wadi shall be filled with water, so that you shall drink, you, your cattle, and your animals.’ This is only a trifle in the sight of the Lord, for he will also hand Moab over to you. You shall conquer every fortified city and every choice city; every good tree you shall fell, all springs of water you shall stop up, and every good piece of land you shall ruin with stones.” The next day, about the time of the morning offering, suddenly water began to flow from the direction of Edom, until the country was filled with water.
When all the Moabites heard that the kings had come up to fight against them, all who were able to put on armor, from the youngest to the oldest, were called out and were drawn up at the frontier. When they rose early in the morning, and the sun shone upon the water, the Moabites saw the water opposite them as red as blood. They said, “This is blood; the kings must have fought together, and killed one another. Now then, Moab, to the spoil!” But when they came to the camp of Israel, the Israelites rose up and attacked the Moabites, who fled before them; as they entered Moab they continued the attack. The cities they overturned, and on every good piece of land everyone threw a stone, until it was covered; every spring of water they stopped up, and every good tree they felled. Only at Kir-hareseth did the stone walls remain, until the slingers surrounded and attacked it. When the king of Moab saw that the battle was going against him, he took with him seven hundred swordsmen to break through, opposite the king of Edom; but they could not. Then he took his firstborn son who was to succeed him, and offered him as a burnt offering on the wall. And great wrath came upon Israel, so they withdrew from him and returned to their own land.
--2 Kings 3:13-27 (bold emphasis added)
Here we see that Yahweh lent his aid to the kings attacking Moab, promising them complete triumph. And for awhile he was able to deliver, but when the Moabite king sacrificed his firstborn son to his
god, that god's "great wrath" came upon the Israelite alliance, and they were driven off in defeat. "Yeah, but Yahweh still kicked butt until that last battle!" Sure, the same way Assyria mastodon-stomped the cities of Judah until only Jerusalem was left, before Yahweh finally rescued King Hezekiah. If you're going to count that as a win for Yahweh, consistency requires that you do the same for the Moabite god in the above passage.Defeat by the "Prince of Tyre" and the Gods and Goddesses of Egypt:
In Ezekiel 28, Yahweh proclaims through the prophet that he will destroy Tyre through the agency of King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon. But in the 29th chapter, Yahweh admits failure and promises Egypt as a consolation prize:
Mortal, King Nebuchadrezzar of Babylon made his army labor hard against Tyre; every head was made bald and every shoulder was rubbed bare; yet neither he nor his army got anything from Tyre to pay for the labor that he had expended against it. Therefore thus says the Lord God: I will give the land of Egypt to King Nebuchadrezzar of Babylon; and he shall carry off its wealth and despoil it and plunder it; and it shall be the wages for his army. I have given him the land of Egypt as his payment for which he labored, because they worked for me, says the Lord God.
The preceding verses in that chapter promise that Yahweh would dry up the Nile and its channels, render it uninhabited even by animals for 40 years, etc., and that Egypt would never again "exalt itself over the nations" (i.e., be an imperial power). Apparently nobody mentioned that to the Ptolemies. Nebuchadnezzar never conquered Egypt either, so I guess he went home without his salary.Pitched Battle Against the "Prince of Persia:"
In the 10th chapter of Daniel, we are told that the spiritual "Prince of Persia" was able to successfully interdict Yahweh's message traffic for 24 days, before Yahweh finally sent reinforcements (the Archangel Michael, "Prince of Israel") to fight him so that the angelic messenger could get through, and even then the battle still raged. In a military context, this sort of thing would not be possible unless the "Prince of Persia" was a peer competitor to Yahweh and his angelic forces. Otherwise the "Prince of Persia" would not be able to prevail in a pitched battle for nearly a month; he would have to resort to guerrilla tactics instead.Principalities and Powers in Heavenly Places:
For our struggle is not against enemies of blood and flesh, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers of this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.
Although I am the very least of all the saints, this grace was given to me to bring to the Gentiles the news of the boundless riches of Christ, and to make everyone see what is the plan of the mystery hidden for ages in God who created all things; so that through the church the wisdom of God in its rich variety might now be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly places.
In these two passages, we see that centuries after the "spiritual warfare" portrayed in the Book of Daniel, battles--and efforts to persuade other spiritual forces of Yahweh's legitimacy--continue. Revelation of Failure:
Then I saw heaven opened, and there was a white horse! Its rider is called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he judges and makes war. His eyes are like a flame of fire, and on his head are many diadems; and he has a name inscribed that no one knows but himself. He is clothed in a robe dipped in blood, and his name is called The Word of God. And the armies of heaven, wearing fine linen, white and pure, were following him on white horses. From his mouth comes a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations, and he will rule them with a rod of iron; he will tread the wine press of the fury of the wrath of God the Almighty. On his robe and on his thigh he has a name inscribed, “King of kings and Lord of lords.”
Then I saw an angel standing in the sun, and with a loud voice he called to all the birds that fly in midheaven, “Come, gather for the great supper of God, to eat the flesh of kings, the flesh of captains, the flesh of the mighty, the flesh of horses and their riders—flesh of all, both free and slave, both small and great.” Then I saw the beast and the kings of the earth with their armies gathered to make war against the rider on the horse and against his army.
Here it is prophesied that Jesus will return with a massed cavalry force to engage the massed cavalry of the "kings of the Earth." Modern vehicles and firepower have rendered these tactics obsolete, and there is a distinct shortage of "kings of the Earth" these days. So, either this prophecy is a failure and Yahweh has lost the Battle of Armageddon by failing to arrange for it to take place, or he will have to wait and hope for civilization to collapse to horses-and-swords again. Taking into account that Jesus claimed that he would return in the lifetime of his contemporaries (e.g. the high priest Caiaphas, "some now standing here" "this generation shall not pass"), the former is the more probable interpretation.
So: if we were to discover that Yahweh actually existed, we would have good reason to think it possible not only to fight him, but to win
. Yahweh's best threat is his putative ability to get his hands on our "souls" when we die and torture them. However, since we have Biblical warrant for the existence of rival spiritual forces (i.e. other deities) who are able to go toe-to-toe with Yahweh and hold their own or win, we would have the option of choosing a patron deity or pantheon with an afterlife we prefer to Yahweh's and joining their