I read the following statement this morning and decided it was worthy to inspire a “Quote of the Month” post.
If I come across equally insightful (short) quotes in coming months, I’ll make “Quote of the Month” an ongoing feature of this blog.
We can’t approach scripture in the manner that one approaches a contract they wish to get out of, looking for loopholes.
Quote from chaya1957
Sadly many people do approach scripture in the way described in that quote.
5 thoughts on “QUOTE OF THE MONTH (April 2014)”
I’m enjoying reading what has been posted there, as well as what is linked to from there. Following a bouncing ball, so to speak, here is one line I have gone down so far: http://skipmoen.com/2014/04/23/truth-justice-and-the-american-way/ [That, combined with the fact that love is, in Judaism, called the heart of the law (in part, because of wording that appears approximately halfway through it), is a good beginning for understanding.] Now, to follow up on what Chaya has said and ProclaimLiberty has commented, I have a couple other lines of thought, in a similar vein, to consider: rape and abortion (and marriage as pertains to these).
In the Bible, if an unmarried female (including someone we would refer to as a girl) is raped, it is assumed that the rapist is responsible to marry her. [This is also the case for a man if the situation is not rape, but sexual interaction.] There is an out for the woman/female, though; her father can refuse the marriage. If she were in the vicinity of people who could hear her, as the crisis ensued, call out — people who then, presumably, would save her from the situation — that would not be something they would have to weigh the value of. Instead, the rapist would be put to death. [Of course, he would be put to death anyway if the woman was married (as I suppose would she if no one helped her). Incidentally, things can go wrong very quickly; even if the female called out, she very well may have significant life consequences.]
In the Bible, if a man is jealous, and suspicious of a wife of his, he can effectively ask God to curse her. This would involve her withering physically (not in terms of her dying) and, were she pregnant, the pregnancy ending. He doesn’t just “get” what he asks for, but there is a prescribed process. And if she had done something unclean in this regard, then the result would be that for which he ostensibly aimed. [Theoretically, that is. The Jews I have discussed this with (in some coursework) think that a pregnancy was never actually aborted in this way.] This was to be entered into in the Temple in Jerusalem. Now, I can only imagine what happened in the minds of real live people if a woman was pregnant, and not by her husband, and God didn’t “say” she’d been bad.
I have more to say about this, but will have to do it later. How would we apply these today?
I remember the first time I saw someone read that latter respective section, in a fellowship meeting [in a congregation against abortion], about a jealous husband. I had read it before, myself; as I had read many things church people don’t read. But this group of people (a Messianic synagogue) was reading the whole Bible through, yearly. It was clear people were wondering what in the world they had just come across. Was this done (with the Temple floor dust) instead of putting an adulterous wife to death? There wasn’t much said that day about it. That is not where I discussed it with others.
It seems to me it would be instead if there were not witnesses, such that are required for a death sentence. Yet, it could be “instead” in only a sense, for reasons ranging from a man simply feeling angry and accusatory (when nothing has been observed at all and there’s no other cause for jealousy) to a man thinking his wife shouldn’t have gotten off free (because, if no one helps a wife or fiance but it happened in the wilderness/countryside and not the city, she gets the benefit of a doubt and is not put to death — it is assumed no one could hear her “when” she called out). I don’t think it’d be instead of heeding proper witnesses [of both people].
We can think of other scenarios, from a woman being pregnant when her husband has been away for a year to a fiance being pregnant when her husband-to-be knows he hasn’t consummated the matter with her. In those cases, it would fit to go through the scenario in the Temple. Jesus’s father, Joseph, could have done this (theoretically). Obviously, the Bible does NOT address every possibility. What about a gang rape? We would have to apply thinking and heart skills. I hope we can also “grow up” as Paul suggested, and for instance not let a father make his daughter marry a rapist. Somehow, I used to think the Bible put any rapist to death. I think that’s appropriate. (So do my sons.) But that’s not happening.
There was a case in Turkey two or three or so years ago. A woman had been forced several times into unwanted sex with someone who broke into her home while her husband was away. He threatened to hurt or kill her children if she didn’t shut up completely and comply. She ended up pregnant. She wanted an abortion (which is generally not allowed there). People gossiped about her for being pregnant. She didn’t know what her husband would do, but she indicated he was a typical self-absorbed male who wouldn’t care much about her or be understanding; like the rest of the culture except he’d have greater authority to do more than talk against her. Anyway, she killed the rapist, cut off his head. I didn’t see any more on what happened.
I think the reason I thought any (proven — because of witnesses) rapist was put to death was because of wording about a rape being like a murder. But, unless I’m just not coming across another location where it is addressed differently, the reference to being like a murder seems to simply be because a betrothed or married woman would have been put to death. So the similarity is to being falsely accused (endangered for punishment and falsely attributed guilt). The consequence for accusing someone and not proving it (on basically any subject, but not that deal where the husband is jealous) is to get the punishment the other person would have gotten due to your accusation (or endangerment for sentencing). Hmm. Yeah, that’s quite archaic (or anomalous or something) to have no punishment for rape itself. [Maybe it does have something to do specifically with the people/culture the law was given to? I mean, there are some totally callous or way sicko people in other cultures at least.]
Yeah, yeah. There’s a punishment, but it’s potentially more a punishment for her. He can’t ever divorce her.
In the Bible, if a man is jealous, and suspicious of a wife of his, he can effectively ask God to curse her. This would involve her withering physically (not in terms of her dying) and, were she pregnant, the pregnancy ending. He doesn’t just “get” what he asks for, but there is a prescribed process. And if she had done something unclean in this regard, then the result would be that for which he ostensibly aimed. [Theoretically, that is. The Jews I have discussed this with (in some coursework) think that a pregnancy was never actually aborted in this way.] This was to be entered into in the Temple in Jerusalem.
This is the place where I participated in open discussion.
I believe that although people have gone to church for centuries to supposedly heed the warning not to forsake the “assembling together” (and new believers are told to find a church), identifying with “church” (at first to gain reprieve from being among the lower communities in the culture of Rome and to opportunistically reject the Jewish brothers and sisters) has in fact been the very definition of “forsaking” assembling TOGETHER.