Deu 20:10 When thou comest nigh unto a city to fight against it, then proclaim peace unto it. Deu 20:11 And it shall be, if it make thee answer of peace, and open unto thee, then it shall be, that all the people that is found therein shall be tributaries unto thee, and they shall serve thee. Deu 20:12 And if it will make no peace with thee, but will make war against thee, then thou shalt besiege it: Deu 20:13 And when the LORD thy God hath delivered it into thine hands, thou shalt smite every male thereof with the edge of the sword: Deu 20:14 But the women, and the little ones, and the cattle, and all that is in the city, even all the spoil thereof, shalt thou take unto thyself; and thou shalt eat the spoil of thine enemies, which the LORD thy God hath given thee. I don't understand this. How likely is it that people in a city simply surrender to strangers which come along and demand everything? Nobody would do this. The Israelites also wouldn't have done this, why does God demand this from other people? These people are also humans, didn't God love them, too? And why did God tell them to take the women and the children and the cattle? I bet the women didn't want this, this means that God basically allowed to Israelites to rape the foreign women. Somehow this seems so barbarian to me, I don't understand why God seems so different in the old testament. Such verses repel many people and I also don't find them very appealing but they are in the bible. How do we deal with them? I find those passages really scary and they don't even fit to how I imagine God. When you think of Jesus you don't think of such things. Why is there such a huge difference between the old testament and the new testament? The bible says God is the same but if he is the same why did he act so differently? Where is the mercy in the old testament for example? I feel like in the old testament everybody was directly stoned to death if he sinned but in the new testament suddenly everything is honkey dorey and you can sin and simply ask for forgiveness and everything is fine again. Where does this huge shift come from? If you cannot deal with such scary old testament passages is it better to simply ignore them and to not read them or is this also not a solution? I really don't know what to reply to somebody who quotes these scary verses because I also find them scary and don't really know what to say about them, I mean I cannot really "justify" them because I don't understand why God did this. Does this not also affect your picture which you have of God? On the one hand we tend to imagine God as loving and forgiving and like a loving father but when you read such verses then suddenly everything is distorted and I become scared of God as if I didn't really know how he really is as if God is erratic and you can never really know how he is. What if you die and think everything is fine and God awaits you with arms wide open and then you suddenly face a totally angry God? This is scary.