[b-hebrew] "Sodomite" in 2 Kings 23.7

George F. Somsel gfsomsel at juno.com
Tue Jul 13 15:37:28 EDT 2004

On Tue, 13 Jul 2004 14:47:23 -0500 "Dora Smith" <villandra at austin.rr.com>
> What is meant by "sodomite" (or word translated thereas) in the 
> following
> passage on Josiah's eviction of Baal from the LORDs temple in
> Jerusalem?
> "And he brake down the houses of the sodomites, that
> were by the house of the LORD, where the women wove
> hangings for the grove." (2 Kings 23.7).
> One thing it does not appear to mean is homosexuality.   It is a 
> place where
> women wore hangings for the grove - where Yahweh's wife Asherah was
> worshipped.
> But it clearly also is not a reference to a failure to show 
> hospitality to
> strangers, as appears to be the case in other Old Testmament 
> references to
> the term sodomite.
> St. Paul seems to have thought that homosexuality was closely tied 
> to the
> practice of idolatry - is this a clue to what was actually going on 
> in the
> minds of the authors of Kings?

There is only one occurance of QD$ in the f. pl. in the OT -- Hos. 4.14,
but this indicates that it did have a fem. form as well.  The text here
is somewhat obscure in that )oR:GoWT $fM BfT.iYM doesn't seem to make
much sense.  Of interest here is Is 59.5 where the verb )fRaG is used in
the context W:QW.R"Y (aC.fByY$ Ye)e:RoGW. "they weave spider webs." 
which BDB understand as hatching intrigue.  Whether this passage has any
relation to that usage is not immediately evident.  Generally, though QD$
and QD$H are taken to be sacred prostitutes.  That other activities would
occur in their domicile is not inconceivable.  Both the weaving of
"houses" and the sacred prostitution would have been seen as relating to
the cultus of foreign gods. 


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