[b-hebrew] xrm and the Canaanites' VIP treatment

Bill Rea bsr15 at cantsl.it.canterbury.ac.nz
Wed Jan 16 15:44:47 EST 2008

I wrote:-

>> In the Bible the seduction of a married woman is a more serious
>> crime than the rape of a virgin. Most modern westerners would hold
>> the opposite view, me included.

And Karl asked:-

>Could you please remind me of the verses that you are looking at? The
>only verses that I can think of are found in Deuteronomy 22 where
>"rape" is not mentioned. Rape always carried the death sentence.

Here's the stuff about the virgin. KJV translation:-

28: If a man find a damsel that is a virgin, which is not betrothed, and
lay hold on her, and lie with her, and they be found;
29: Then the man that lay with her shall give unto the damsel's father
fifty shekels of silver, and she shall be his wife; because he hath
humbled her, he may not put her away all his days.

Ok, it doesn't say rape. It says he lays hold of her and lies with her.
In most people's books, mine included, that sounds like forceful sex,
a.k.a. rape.

>All societies share common norms of ethical behavior. Stealing,
>murdering, lying, the coveting of what belongs to others, are all
>recognized as wrong. Even in sexually "liberated" societies, there is
>an implicit recognition that cheating on one's lover is wrong. Some
>try to justify their actions, but even the action of trying to justify
>themselves is an admission that they recognize that what they do is
>wrong. In that, ancient societies are no different from modern ones.

This looks like a case of moving the goal posts after the goal had
been scored. You asked for, and I quote:-

> Yitzhak wrote:-
> >> People are not different, but they have different cultural values,
> >> and our cultural sense
> >> of right or wrong is different from the values during Biblical times.
> >>
> And Karl asked:-
> >Oh? How are they different? Can you give any specific examples?

I gave you an example. Read it. Its offensive to most modern people. A
woman gets raped and the rapist has to marry her with no chance of
divorce. Who's that punishment for? Here if you did what's in those verses
you could been facing time in the slammer if your lawyer doesn't defame
and slander the victim sufficiently well to convince the jury she was a
slut. I doubt you could even find on New Zealand's statute books a law
which forbids a man to seduce a married woman. Morally its still wrong,
but not legally. The laws in the Torah aren't there to look pretty. They
were living law codes which were actually used. They are, in some cases,
quite different to our views of right and wrong.

Bill Rea, ICT Services, University of Canterbury \_
E-Mail bill.rea at canterbury.ac.nz                </   New
Phone 64-3-364-2331, Fax  64-3-364-2332        /)  Zealand
Unix Systems Administrator                    (/'

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