It may seem harsh until you consider what the Caanenites were capable of, think of ISIS for example. They are not a bunch of fun fellows to be around and neither were the people of Caanen. They were savage and barbaric, for example, when the people of Philistia captured their enemies it often did not mean just death but torture, or what about the Ammonites and their god Molek?
Well, before you feel too sorry for this sad bunch of people just consider that they commonly practiced child sacrifice by fire.
Leviticus 20:1-2 The Lord said to Moses, “Say to the Israelites: ‘Any Israelite or any foreigner residing in Israel who sacrifices any of his children to Molek is to be put to death. The members of the community are to stone him.
If they did not wipe them out, then later on they would do the same things- which they did infact.
1 Kings 11:5-6 He followed Ashtoreth the goddess of the Sidonians, and Molek the detestable god of the Ammonites. So Solomon did evil in the eyes of the Lord; he did not follow the Lord completely, as David his father had done.
Fast forward again,
Isaiah 57:9 You went to Molek with olive oil and increased your perfumes. You sent your ambassadors far away; you descended to the very realm of the dead!
Jeremiah 32:35 They built high places for Baal in the Valley of Ben Hinnom to sacrifice their sons and daughters to Molek, though I never commanded—nor did it enter my mind—that they should do such a detestable thing and so make Judah sin.
As God already warned before way back in the book of Numbers –
Numbers 33:55-56 “‘But if you do not drive out the inhabitants of the land, those you allow to remain will become barbs in your eyes and thorns in your sides. They will give you trouble in the land where you will live. And then I will do to you what I plan to do to them.’”
So next time someone says God commanded genocide in the Old Testament, throw this at them.
God is has not commanded people to kill anyone today like then infact Jesus says, “Love your enemies” not kill them, however if anyone wants to bring up ancient Jewish history to disprove God’s goodness or existence then do your research before you bring up stuff long long ago to justify your stance for the 21st Century. It might clear things up fairly nicely.