King David

Bill Rea cctr114 at it.canterbury.ac.nz
Sun Dec 17 19:20:41 EST 2000


Harold wrote:-

>Perhaps I am being picky, but Judges 5:29-30 does not speak of rape but
>rather of dividing the spoil. Since other laws concern taking wives of war
>captives, that may be in part what was involved. Since further Scriptures
>speak of making servants of war captives, a man might take two women, one
>as a wife and the other as a household servant. So it is not necessary to
>interpret the passage of rape, even if that was a practice in the ancient
>(and modern) world of war.

My interpretation hinges on the word usually translated as "maiden"
or something equally as sweet. In Alter's book "The Art of Biblical
Poetry" he suggests that the word could be "an earthy term". I looked
at it a few years ago and was inclined to agree with him. But as you
say, it's in the context of dividing spoil. Even if word means nothing more
than a woman, in the passage the women of the victors (or so they think)
speak approvingly of the practice. In western society not only is 
this disapproved of, but having more than one wife is illegal in
numerous countries.

Bill Rea, Information Technology Dept., Canterbury  University  \_ 
E-Mail b dot rea at it dot canterbury dot ac dot nz             </   New 
Phone   64-3-364-2331, Fax     64-3-364-2332                   /)  Zealand 
Unix Systems Administrator                                    (/' 




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