Because certain people groups and nations had devolved to the level of animal depravity, incestuous relationships, inbreeding, cannibalism, human sacrifices, all without remorse and in total disregard to the Law of G-d; they produced nothing but hardened generational resistance to love, mercy, kindness, and the simple desire to do good; they insured their own ultimate destruction.
Why would a G-d of love and mercy allow them to ‘fester’; to continue in their evil and evil deeds? G-d will allow only so much depravity to exist before the ‘stench’ of it can no longer be tolerated and its destruction is the only answer.
What it boils down to is the condition of the human heart, and the simple recognition of the difference between right and wrong, good and evil. When the difference between the two becomes clouded, blurred, and eventually disappears within a given society, the society disappears. The G-d of Yisra’el extends His great protective hand over those people groups and Nations that show the slightest indication of a desire for ‘good’ within them. When that desire for good is gone, when the only desire is evil and more of it, eventual destruction will come.
Every day, G-d gives each of us the freedom to choose who and/or what we will choose to follow. With every decision we make, out of the countless decisions made every day by each of us, we have the G-d given freedom to make whatever choice we will. We have all been created with that basic freedom, and it matters not what country we live in, what government we live under, whether we are the captor or the prisoner; we all have the same freedom of choice. When we consciously and continuously choose to make decisions based on our evil inclinations, our hearts become hardened to the good, and we eventually become evil. Generation after generation of evil individuals producing offspring who desire only evil will eventually infect the very core of their society producing evil peoples, countries, and nations.
This was the condition of Sodom and Gomorrah at the time of Abraham. Abraham plead with G-d that they would be spared destruction if at least ten righteous people could be found living within their gates (Genesis 18:32). Well, as we know both cities were destroyed; men, women, and children. Those nations destroyed by G-d in the Tanakh began with individuals who had the freedom to make their own choices. Those choices led to the depravity that brought on the total destruction of their people, a destruction required to stop the madness.
So, as in The Bible, and especially in the Tanakh (what Christians call The Old Testament), we see the consequence of evil, but we can also see the blessings of goodness and mercy upon those who chose to be obedient. Rabbi Sha’ul (Paul) taught in the New Testament that all those things as related to us in the teachings of the Tanakh were given as examples that we might learn from them. Our G-d does not give us an impossible task, just to watch us fail.
The Commandments and Laws as found in His Torah (first five books of the Tanakh) can be kept if we so desire. The meaning of the Hebrew word Torah is teaching or instruction. Choosing to follow the instruction of Torah will equip and educate us so that we can make the correct decisions and choices that lead to freedom, blessing, and prosperity. Or, we can decide to follow our own laws, making our own choices based on the faulty teachings and philosophy of man, which in turn leads to the false security of material goods, and eventual death of the individual soul, a people, and a nation. it is a choice that we cannot escape and it begins with each of us right now.
The Patriarch Yehoshua (Joshua) put it this way,
“And if it seems evil in your eyes to serve YHVH, choose for yourselves this day whom you are going to serve, whether the mighty ones which your fathers served that were beyond the River, or the mighty ones of the Amorites, in whose land you dwell. But I and my house, we serve YHVH.” Yehoshua 24:15 (TS 2009)