What can a God possibly want? It appears the Yahweh of the Old Testament wants to have people worship Him. Obey Him. Sacrifice things to Him. In order to achieve this, He created a Covenant with Abraham that He would favor Abraham’s descendants, so long as they did everything He demanded. He had apparently already created a system that guaranteed eternal punishment for those who failed to follow Him, as incentive for obeying Him. And He created a system that, by the time of the New Testament, allows for a total of 144,000 people to go to Heaven, and the other 100 billion or whatever to go to Hell for eternity.
Almost everyone would go to Hell, because they would be born in a state of “sin” – they would be born already out of favor with God. How can He set people up to fail, and then send billions of them to hell for eternity for failing to meet His requirements? Edward FitzGerald, in his version of the Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam, asks
O Thou, who didst with pitfall and with gin (“gin” means “trap”)
Beset the road I was to wander in,
Thou wilt not with Predestination round
Enmesh me, and impute my Fall to sin?
Yahweh is a God of Terror and Chaos
Followers of this God say it has nothing to do with Predestination. He gives everyone freedom of choice, to follow Him or not. The only problem is, He created the whole system that in His omnipotence He could have made any way He wanted, and in His omniscience He knew damn well that tens of billions would go to Hell for eternity.
Not only that, He triggered it by setting a trap for Adam and Eve, and then punishing all their descendants forever for falling into the trap.
Is this loving? No. Is it even rational? No. It is beyond cruel, it is insane.
If there is a God of the Old Testament, He is merely a manifestation of the Chaos of the Universe, and is without direction or morality.
As for believers in the God, are they rational? How can they call this God by such names as “the beneficent”, “the all-loving”, “the merciful”? How can they love Him? How can they respect Him as a God who looks after and cares for all His creatures, when thousands of children die every day from starvation and preventable diseases?
Grow up, believers! Outgrow your prayers and worship of the irrational Old Gods of Chaos, and turn to the joyful task of discovering the Universe and improving human existence.