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God vs.Science

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Sun Jan 08, 2012 10:50 am
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inkwell says...



Thanks for the link. Nothing real new from skimming. Good source for discussion on catholic theology though.
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kimmybee says...



inkwell: What I was trying to point out to you is that because persons say they are Christians (e.g. Westboro Baptist church) doesn't make them one. The whole point is of the faith is that you are 'Christ-like'. So if they express hate on someone because that person has a sense of 'morality' but doesn't believe in God then they are not very Christ-like! They usually use the Bible to support what they believe and usually it is their own 'edition' of the Bible. Also, if you read the entire chapter from a scripture where they got that one verse, you get an entirely different message!
So I find it hard to believe that Christians (and I won't even say 'real Christians' since you either are or aren't) would be like that. The main idea is that you show love to everyone irrespective of who they are/ have chosen to be. The Faith has aversions to different ways of life, but is centered on tolerance and respect for individuals. If you have had any personal experience with biblical stories, what about the one where and adulterer was brought to Christ (this being a major taboo in the faith) to be stoned to death and he said, 'Let he who has not sin cast the first stone'?
The idea is that everyone is imperfect (any belief or atheism can attest to that) and so we have no right to judge another neither is given unto anyone to make that person 'pay' for their 'sins'. Hope I was clearer this time.
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Sun Jan 08, 2012 8:39 pm
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Cole says...



Amen Kimmybee : )
My heart holds all secrets; my heart tells no lies.

~Hosea 6:3~
ונדעה נרדפה לדעת את יהוה כשחר נכון מצאו ויבוא כגשם לנו כמלקוש יורה ארץ׃




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Sun Jan 08, 2012 9:12 pm
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Cole says...



Skwmusic:

There is a difference between reading the Bible and studying it, mind you.

Firstly, the first passage you have listed is wrong. You also skipped over very important details in the passage, too, which I would consider taking it completely out of context:

"In case a man finds a girl, a virgin who has not been engaged, and he actually seizes her and lies down with her, and they have been found out, the man who lay down with her must also give the girl's father fifty silver shekels, and she will become his wife due to the fact that he humiliated her. He will not be allowed to divorce her all his days." --Deuteronomy 22:28-29.

If a corrupt man felt at liberty to have sexual relations with a virgin, she would be the primary loser. Besides the possibility that she might have an illegitimate child, her value as a bride would be destroyed, for many Israelites would not want to marry her once she was no longer a virgin. What, though, would discourage a man from taking liberties from a virgin? God's holy, righteous, and good Law would. (Romans 7:12)

The Mosaic Law had a provision allowing a man to divorce his wife for certain reasons. (Deuteronomy 22:13-19; 24:1; Matthew 19:7-8.) But what we read at Exodus 22:16-17 and Deuteronomy 22:28-29 shows that the option of divorce disappeared after premarital fornication.

This, then, might cause a man (or a virgin woman) to resist the temptation to share in fornication. A man could not say, "She is pretty and exciting, so I'll have a good time with her even though she is not the sort I'd like to marry." Rather, this law would deter immorality by causing any would-be offender to weigh the long-term consequences of fornication--having to stay with the other party throughout his life. It would be a punishment for the man, but would save the girl who was raped from a life of destitution.

This Law also lessened the problem illegitimate offspring, which was a big offense to the Israelites. So if a man who seduced a virgin had to marry her, their fornication would not result in an illegitimate offspring among the Israelites, thus protecting the child.

Granted, Christians live in a social setting that is different from that of the ancient Israelites. We are not under the decrees of the Mosaic Law, including this Law requiring the marriage of two persons who engaged in such fornication. Nonetheless, we cannot feel that engaging in premarital fornication is an insignificant thing. Christians should give serious thought to long-term consequences, even as this Law moved the Israelites to do so. This is a very important passage.


You also got the number of the passage of your second point wrong, too.

"Whoever sacrifices to any god other than the Lord will be doomed." --Exodus 22:20. This passage is honestly no different from the Commandment: "Do not worship false idols and false gods." This describes a sin no different from the sin of blasphemy.

Especially in the days of Abraham and Moses, the number of worshipers of false gods was incredible among the Hebrews. It even continued up through the time of Elijah, Christ, and Paul. For example, awhile back historians and archeologist discovered a Hebrew temple erected in honor of Inanna, the Sumerian goddess of lust, sexual love, and war. (The Jewish society was so outraged by it that they destroyed the temple's ruins.)

The Canaanite religion was also popular (even during the time of Christ). Pagans would kill their children as sacrifices to these gods-- Baal, Anat, Resheph, Shamayim, Lotan, and others--an act that was detested by God.

You tell me what is worse; pagans who sacrificed their own children to their gods, or a Biblical Law that justified the punishment of those people.


The passage number for your third example is wrong, as well.

"You should not let a witch live." --Exodus 22:18. This is also very similar to this passage: "Let no one be found among you who sacrifices their son or daughter in the fire, who practices divination or sorcery, interprets omens, engages in witchcraft, or casts spells, or who is a medium or spiritist or who consults the dead." (Deuteronomy 18:10-11)

Back in the time of Moses and the rising of the established Jewish church, witches and sorceress practiced the Canaanite faith I mentioned above (or another pagan faith), which involved sacrificing children to pagan gods. I think I made my point above: Which is worse; people sacrificing their children to gods, or a Law that punishes those people.

* * *

As for believing in these Laws, I have to say that I do. The morality of these Laws has not changed over time at all. I mentioned in my last post that secular morality changes, but not religious morality.

I believe it is sinful to practice witchcraft, to worship other gods, as well to commit fornication. However, because I follow the law of Christ, I observe these Laws differently, I treat them differently. All of these are still sins, in fact, Christ even said that He did not come to abolish the Law of Moses. (Matthew 5:17) But Christ has shown us how to respond to the sin in a different way. We no longer stone people, burn people (or we shouldn't. A lot of very Un-Christ-like people have done blasphemous things in the name of God, such as the Crusades, the witch hunts, etc.) Christ taught us a new way to react to sin, but the sins are still the same; Christ has merely taught us to respond to those sins differently. The morality, however, is unchanged.

As for your point here:
Your religion alone is divided into hundreds of sects each disputing things in the bible like gay marriage, Jesus's divinity, proselytizing, love, and many more.
The only reason there is any dispute over these doctrines is because people refuse to trust in Scripture and live by it. People refuse to believe in aspects of the Bible due to justification of their own sins, misunderstanding the text, or to keep their lives comfortable.

I live (or attempt to live) by the Law that Christ has established in the Gospels. His Law is clear, is superior, is infallible, and is unchanging no matter what age i live in. Period. I bet nearly any fellow Christian of mine would agree with that.
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~Hosea 6:3~
ונדעה נרדפה לדעת את יהוה כשחר נכון מצאו ויבוא כגשם לנו כמלקוש יורה ארץ׃




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Sun Jan 08, 2012 11:20 pm
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Kit says...



Back in the time of Moses and the rising of the established Jewish church, witches and sorceress practiced the Canaanite faith I mentioned above (or another pagan faith), which involved sacrificing children to pagan gods. I think I made my point above: Which is worse; people sacrificing their children to gods, or a Law that punishes those people.


Yeah, it's true, a religion that makes people sacrifice their kids must truly be evil, clearly that is not something within the Judeo-Christian tradition during that time.

Then God said, "Take your son, your only son, Isaac, whom you love, and go to the region of Moriah. Sacrifice him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains I will tell you about."


Okay, okay, that's a cheap shot, everyone knows God was playing chicken and I mean, he stopped Abraham from actually killing the little boy at the last second, so it doesn't really count. And that was really early on, and like one time...

“If you give the Ammonites into my hands, 31 whatever comes out of the door of my house to meet me when I return in triumph from the Ammonites will be the LORD’s, and I will sacrifice it as a burnt offering.”

32 Then Jephthah went over to fight the Ammonites, and the LORD gave them into his hands. 33 He devastated twenty towns from Aroer to the vicinity of Minnith, as far as Abel Keramim. Thus Israel subdued Ammon.

34 When Jephthah returned to his home in Mizpah, who should come out to meet him but his daughter, dancing to the sound of timbrels! She was an only child. Except for her he had neither son nor daughter. 35 When he saw her, he tore his clothes and cried, “Oh no, my daughter! You have brought me down and I am devastated. I have made a vow to the LORD that I cannot break.”


Oh...huh...okay. Two times. And with the burnt sacrifice again, that's somewhat of a theme. But I mean, obviously God didn't let Jephthah actually go through with it, he was just testing his honour and obedience and things, he couldn't possibly have gone through with-

After the two months, she returned to her father, and he did to her as he had vowed. And she was a virgin.


Right, maybe he did go through with it. But that's like one guy, and hey, for what it's worth, she got to keep her virginity.

24Behold, here is my daughter a maiden, and his concubine; them I will bring out now, and humble ye them, and do with them what seemeth good unto you: but unto this man do not so vile a thing.

25But the men would not hearken to him: so the man took his concubine, and brought her forth unto them; and they knew her, and abused her all the night until the morning: and when the day began to spring, they let her go.

26Then came the woman in the dawning of the day, and fell down at the door of the man's house where her lord was, till it was light.

27And her lord rose up in the morning, and opened the doors of the house, and went out to go his way: and, behold, the woman his concubine was fallen down at the door of the house, and her hands were upon the threshold.

28And he said unto her, Up, and let us be going. But none answered. Then the man took her up upon an ass, and the man rose up, and gat him unto his place.

29And when he was come into his house, he took a knife, and laid hold on his concubine, and divided her, together with her bones, into twelve pieces, and sent her into all the coasts of Israel.


Okay. Yes. Right. I don't know what to think about that.

But I mean, these were extenuating circumstances, right? It's not like it was actually written into law anywhere in the Bible that you should brutally murder your children...

18If a man have a stubborn and rebellious son, which will not obey the voice of his father, or the voice of his mother, and that, when they have chastened him, will not hearken unto them:

19Then shall his father and his mother lay hold on him, and bring him out unto the elders of his city, and unto the gate of his place;

20And they shall say unto the elders of his city, This our son is stubborn and rebellious, he will not obey our voice; he is a glutton, and a drunkard.

21And all the men of his city shall stone him with stones, that he die: so shalt thou put evil away from among you; and all Israel shall hear, and fear.


...aside from... that one. You know, Bible, you aren't doing me any favours here.

And if a man sell his daughter to be a maidservant, she shall not go out as the menservants do.


ARGGGHHHHH!

As I've said, I'm a Christian, but in terms of the burning to death of hundreds of thousands, some records say millions of women, Christians were very much in the wrong on that one. Many of them were just midwives who were good at their jobs, and burning them set back Western medicine by God knows how much, killing many more. And in terms of sacrificing kids, I'm afraid we don't have the most stellar record there, either. Come to think of it, God even sent his kid to be sacrificed, and that's God.

And the 'seizes and lies down with her' verse? Really? You're going to defend that? Women are still being stoned to death for being sexually assaulted. One was 13, and was stoned to death in 2008, legally, in front of more than a thousand people at a football stadium. They are using the same verses to justify what they do as you do, we are all the children of Abraham, as the saying goes. How on earth is it a punishment to make a rapist permanently marry his victim? He can legally assault her and she has no escape, somehow the stoning doesn't seem so heinous. There is a lot of good in the Bible, don't get me wrong, but it doesn't so much give women the short end of the stick as it does beat them over the head with it.
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Mon Jan 09, 2012 1:52 am
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Cole says...



Kit, I can't tell if you're being entirely sarcastic or not...

I think you're assuming that I'm using that verse to support rape or inequality of women, which I am not. I don't think you totally understand what that was all about.

But first, let me talk about what you've been saying about sacrificing children. God condemns human sacrifice, most gravely He despises the act of killing children. Jews were not known to sacrifice children, for Moses' Law condemns it. Someone who practiced this would have been put to death.

With the story of Abraham being asked to sacrifice Isaac (or any similar biblical story), God never intended for the child to die, but rather He was simply testing the faith and obedience of His servants (Abraham, for example). He was humbling them.

Also, about the death of Christ, it was God in the form of the Son who died for the sins of the world, for the sacrifice and ransom. It's really a bit different from sacrificing actual children.

Now back to the other issue; in that time period, if a woman did not marry, she would be forced to live in poverty, and would probably have to become a prostitute or gypsy to make a living. She would not be able to marry if she was not a virgin, for nearly all Israelite men detested an "impure woman" even if it wasn't her own doing.

This Law was protecting the woman, by forcing the man who had raped her to marry her, to take responsibility of her so she would not have to suffer in poverty. Because he defiled her and probably destroyed all chances of her getting married, it was only right that he be forced to take care of her, he would be obligated to provide for her since he had ruined her life.

It was also protecting the possible child if the woman became pregnant. For all children born outside of the sanctity of marriage, they were branded as impure by the Israelites. By forcing the woman and man to become married, it saved the child from being abandoned by society as a bastard child.

It was the best of a very bad situation.

Also, know that there were laws protecting wives from their husbands. The Law recognized marriage as being a holy covenant between a man and a woman, so though the scenario you describe of the rapist being able to continuously abuse his wife might have been possible, if he had been found out, he would have been punished for betrayal and defiling the covenant of marriage. God speaks out against a man acting treacherously towards his wife (beating her, abusing her) multiple times throughout the Old and New Testament.

As for the Bible being derogatory toward women, that may be true. Unfortunately that was the social norm back then. However, though the Bible might be degrading women, God is not. Look at all the women in the Bible whose lives portray God's beauty and love: Queen Esther, Ruth, Naomi, Rahab, Hagar, Sarah, Mary (the mother of Jesus), Mary Magdalene, Martha, Abigail, Deborah, Hannah. Though there may be aspects of the Bible that are very insulting towards women, deep down I think God has used the Bible to show the importance of women in His plan. He has used it to show their strength, their worth, their ability, and their glory.

Also, did you know that Jesus is considered among historians to be one of the biggest women's rights advocates of His day? It wasn't necessarily what He said about women, but how He treated them, how He cherished them.

Mary of Magdala is considered to be one of the greatest disciples of Christ in the early church: some think He even favored her over the twelve disciples. She also was with Him during His entire trial and crucifixion and was the first to witness His resurrection. It's a pretty big deal that the news of His resurrection came from a woman--that would be really unheard of back then, for a woman to be so outspoken about something so controversial. It would have actually been extremely dangerous.

As for the modern issues we see of women being stoned, degraded, and hurt, know that I am devastated. Because of Christ, we should not be dealing with people in that manner any more. Christ taught all of us better than that.
My heart holds all secrets; my heart tells no lies.

~Hosea 6:3~
ונדעה נרדפה לדעת את יהוה כשחר נכון מצאו ויבוא כגשם לנו כמלקוש יורה ארץ׃




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Mon Jan 09, 2012 2:17 am
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skwmusic says...



I believe it is sinful to practice witchcraft


.......

That's it.

That's my argument against you Hayden.

Understand?
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Pigeon says...



Hayden, I understand your point with women having to marry their rapists; how that may have been the best option at the time, and I also understand that Abraham was being tested when he almost sacrificed Isaac. Would you be able to address the other passages which Kit sited though? I'm just interested to see wht you have to say about them. Also, I think part of what Kit was saying is that skwmusic has a point when he says that God appears to condone heinous acts in the Bible, so refuting what Kit said in full would be in your best interest if you are denying that claim.
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skwmusic says...



Anyways let's write a real argument! Well that was a real argument but....actually I was going to post something much more offensive but I decided not to out of the good will of my heart.

You do provide a somewhat acceptable justification for the law, but as far as I remember, isn't it the bible that says that premarital sex defiles the individuals? I don't think that was really a societal thing before the bible, but I'm not a historian so maybe I'm wrong. I still think that if you have to write a sick law like that you have to be dealing with people who are just pure evil. Like people who enjoy torturing people by carving pumpkins into people with hot spoons. And honestly even under these circumstances, isn't there an incentive to rape there? I mean the rapist can just rape that girl all he wants now and since he lives in a patriarchal society (say what you want about the bible but the fact that the world back then was male dominated is undeniable) no one's gonna do anything about it.

As for believing in these Laws, I have to say that I do.


Let's take this scenario. Someone is stalking a famous celebrity like Taylor Swift or someone. He rapes her. Now Taylor has to marry that rapist and she can never divorce her. Do you think Taylor feels grateful? Now let's take a few more blocks out of the Jenga tower. Let's say she gets pregnant! Now she has to keep that reminder of what has happened to her for 9 MONTHS. And not only that, this man will probably continue raping Taylor and she can never file for a divorce.

The reason people do not interpret the bible literally anymore, is so stuff like the above scenario with Taylor Swift doesn't happen.

Now you do make another post specifying that this was during times where people
"I'm not concerned about all hell breaking loose, but that a PART of hell will break loose... it'll be much harder to detect." -George Carlin




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Mon Jan 09, 2012 2:48 am
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Pigeon says...



skwmusic, Hayden was quite clear about the literal interpretation of the laws no longer applying, only the morals they represent. Be careful not to put words on people's mouths.
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Aet Lindling says...



kimmybee wrote:inkwell: What I was trying to point out to you is that because persons say they are Christians (e.g. Westboro Baptist church) doesn't make them one.

Hey there, guys! Doesn't look like anyone's pointed this out, but what's happening here is the No True Scotsman fallacy.

Basically, this is when people arbitrarily change the definition of a group to exclude unsavory individuals who would otherwise be a part of the group.

Westboro Baptists are absolutely Christians, just as much as you are. They believe in and accept Jesus Christ as their savior, and follow the Bible as their belief system. Of course, it would be much nicer if the term "Christian" didn't apply to a group you view as so hateful such as the Westboro Baptist Church, but either way, they are Christians. Simply because they overlook some of the rules does not make them any less of a Christian than you, who I am sure has overlooked Matthew 5:21-48 and others like it.

Just like I, as an atheist, would like to say that David Roland Waters (to save you the trouble of looking him up, he was a murderer) was not an atheist, since he was a horrible person and it reflects badly on me, he still fits the definition and so he is an atheist.

Here's the original coining of the term, to give you a little better understanding:
Antony Flew, in Thinking About Thinking wrote:Imagine Hamish McDonald, a Scotsman, sitting down with his Glasgow Morning Herald and seeing an article about how the "Brighton Sex Maniac Strikes Again." Hamish is shocked and declares that "No Scotsman would do such a thing." The next day he sits down to read his Glasgow Morning Herald again and this time finds an article about an Aberdeen man whose brutal actions make the Brighton sex maniac seem almost gentlemanly. This fact shows that Hamish was wrong in his opinion but is he going to admit this? Not likely. This time he says, "No true Scotsman would do such a thing."


Might dig into this actual debate at another time, but that fallacy caught my eye and I thought I'd highlight it. (edit: it seems I took part early on, but the debate's changed considerably since then)
12-18-12 7:43 PM
AmelieoftheValley: ...Aet and Bog sometimes sound like a comedy duo.
12-18-12 7:43 PM
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RIP Bog 2008-2013. If only we could comede once more...

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Confictura says...



This story is, as some have said, simple propaganda.
There are millions of variations of twists out there, some claiming that the student was einstein or some other extremely influential person in history.

The problem with pitting Religion and Science against each other is that Science is based on observation and empirical evidence/fact. While Religion is based on (blind) faith and belief. You can't cite evidence to someone who doesn't care about the evidence, just as you can't make someone believe something against their will.

The very nature of God is a paradox.
"Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able?
Then he is not omnipotent.
Is he able, but not willing?
Then he is malevolent.
Is he both able, and willing?
Then whence cometh evil?
Is he neither able nor willing?
Then why call him God?"

You can't explain God. It's impossible for the world to be in the state that it's in if he is Benevolent, Omnipotent, and Omniscient.
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Mon Jan 09, 2012 11:33 pm
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Cole says...



Skwmusic, Hayden was quite clear about the literal interpretation of the laws no longer applying, only the morals they represent. Be careful not to put words on people's mouths.


Thank you Pigeon ; )

And, yes, I am willing to address all the passages Kit mentioned. But, be patient, it might take me a day or two to finish writing the explanations. (One of my explanations is already six pages long on Word for ONE PASSAGE!) So it may take awhile. : )
My heart holds all secrets; my heart tells no lies.

~Hosea 6:3~
ונדעה נרדפה לדעת את יהוה כשחר נכון מצאו ויבוא כגשם לנו כמלקוש יורה ארץ׃




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Tue Jan 10, 2012 12:59 am
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Cole says...



Kit, a major, major problem with you throwing in these passages is that you do not know the history behind them. Be careful about context, too.

For your first passage that I did not yet address, the passage about Jephthah, he did not kill his daughter! I will explain. (Sorry for the length)

Judges 11:29-40--

Then the Spirit of the Lord came on Jephthah. He crossed Gilead and Manasseh, passed through Mizpah of Gilead, and from there he advanced against the Ammonites. And Jephthah made a vow to the Lord: "If you give the Ammonites into my hands, whatever comes out of the door of my house to meet me when I return in triumph from the Ammonites will be the Lord's, and I will sacrifice it as a burnt offering."

Then Jephthah went over to fight the Ammonites, and the Lord gave them into his hands. He devastated twenty towns from Aroer to the vicinity of Minnith, as far as Abel Keramim. Thus Israel subdued Ammon.

When Jephthah returned to his home in Mizpah, who should come out to meet him but his daughter, dancing to the sound of timbrels! She was an only child. Except for her he had neither son nor daughter. When he saw her, he tore his clothes and cried, "Oh no, my daughter! You have brought me down and I am devastated. I have made a vow to the Lord that I cannot break."

"My father," she replied, "you have given your word to the Lord. Do to me just as you promised, now that the Lord has avenged you of your enemies, the Ammonites. But grant me this one request," she said. "Give me two months to roam the hills and weep with my friends, because I will never marry."

"You may go," he said. And he let her go for two months. She and her friends went into the hills and wept because she would never marry. After the two months, she returned to her father, and he did to her as he had vowed. And she was a virgin.

From this comes the Israelite tradition that each year the young women of Israel go out for four days to commemorate the daughter of Jephthah the Gileadite.


* * *
Here is the summary of Judges 11, from verse 1 to verse 40.

Jephthah, the son of Gilead, was a great captain. The Israelites, against whom God was irritated, being forced to go to war with the Ammonites assembled themselves together to force Jephthah to come to their aid, and chose him for their captain against the Ammonites. He accepted the command on conditions that, if God should give him the victory, they would acknowledge him for their prince.

He marched against the Ammonites, and being eager to ensure the success of the war, he made a vow to the Lord to offer in sacrifice or (the important word here is "or") as a burnt-offering the first thing that should come out of the house to meet him at his return from victory.

He then fought with and defeated the Ammonites; returning victorious to his house, his only daughter was the first to meet him. Jephthah was struck with terror at the sight of her, and tearing his garments, he exclaimed, "Oh no, my daughter! You have brought me down and I am devastated. I have made a vow to the Lord that I cannot break."

His daughter understanding the declaration of his vow, urged him to accomplish what he had vowed to the Lord, which to her would be agreeable, seeing the Lord had avenged him of his and his country's enemies. However, both Jepthah and his daughter were dismayed with the idea of her becoming a virgin, because this vow prevented a legacy for the two of them.

Jephthah could not deny her this request. She accordingly went, and at the end of two months returned, and put herself into the hands of her father, who did with her according to his vow. Jephthah's daughter was not killed, but her virginity was consecrated to God, and she was separated from all connection with the world. This indeed seems to be implied in the scriptural account, "And she was a virgin." (Judges 11:39) The passage never says she died, but ends with her being a virgin.

* * *

When Jephthah went forth to battle against the Ammonites, he vowed to the Lord and said: "If you give the Ammonites into my hands, whatever comes out of the door of my house to meet me when I return in triumph from the Ammonites will be the Lord's, and I will sacrifice it as a burnt offering."

In Hebrew, the use of conjunctions, (either, or, and) (justified by the Hebrew idiom thus, "He that cursed his father AND his mother" [Exodus 21:17]) are necessarily rendered disjunctive (separating two subjects), "His father OR his mother" by the Septuagint, Vulgate, Chaldee, and English, confirmed by Matthew 15:4. The lack of connecting particles in this example makes it necessary that this particular conjunction should be understood as disjunctive. This basically means that the vow consisted of two separate parts that did not apply to one another:

"If you give the Ammonites into my hands, whatever comes out of the door of my house to meet me when I return in triumph from the Ammonites will be the Lord's, and [in Hebrew, this conjunction would most likely be disjunctive] I will sacrifice it as a burnt offering."

Leviticus 27:1-5 is where the Lord prescribes the price at which either males or females, who had been vowed to the Lord, might be redeemed from the vow. This also is an argument that the daughter of Jephthah was not sacrificed; as the father had it in his power, at a very moderate price, to have redeemed her: and surely the blood of his daughter must have been of more value in his sight than thirty shekels of silver.
This was a wise regulation to remedy rash vows. But if the vow was accompanied with devotement, it was irredeemable, as in the following case. (Leviticus 27:28)

This law therefore applied to Jephthah's case, who had devoted his daughter to the Lord, or opened his mouth to the Lord, and therefore could not go back, as he declared in his grief at seeing his daughter and only child coming to meet him with dances: she was, therefore necessarily devoted, but with her own consent to perpetual virginity in the service of the tabernacle (Judges 11:36, 37).

This instance appears to be decisive of the nature of her devotement. Her father's extreme grief on the occasion (Judges 11:35) and her demand of a "vacation" for two months to grieve her virginity (Judges 11:38), are both perfectly natural. Having no other offspring, he could only look forward to the extinction of his name and family; and a state of celibacy was no ordinary sacrifice on her part, who, though she generously gave up, could only regret the loss of becoming a mother in Israel, a high honor.

Jephthah did with her according to what he vowed, and thus he gave her up to God and she remained a virgin all her life (Judges 11:34-39).

Verse 35:

Jephthah was greatly distressed to think that his daughter, who was his only child, should be, in consequence of his vow, prevented from continuing his family in Israel; for it is evident that he had no other child, for besides her, he had neither son nor daughter (Judges 11:34). He might, therefore, well be grieved that his family was to become extinct in Israel. (Jews honored ancestry, family, and descendants, so knowing he would not longer live on through his children would have been unbearable)

Verse 36:

The daughter was obedient. A woman to have no offspring was considered to be in a state of the utmost degradation among the Hebrews; but she did not care about becoming celibate because she had seen that her father was in safety, and her country delivered.

Verse 37:

Notice that his daughter grieved not her death (which would have been the chief cause of lamentation if that had been vowed) but her virginity. She was to live and die without being married and having children, which Jewish women very much regretted. It is plain, from the language of the sacred writer, that she was devoted to God in such a way as required her to remain unmarried and childless.

Verse 39:

It appears evident that Jephthah's daughter was not sacrificed to God, but consecrated to him in a state of perpetual virginity; those dedicated or consecrated to God would live in a state of unchangeable celibacy. Therefore, she continued a virgin all the days of her life.

Verse 40:

This verse says, "From this comes the Israelite tradition that each year the young women of Israel go out for four days to commemorate the daughter of Jephthah the Gileadite." This verse also gives evidence that the daughter of Jephthah was not killed: nor does it appear that the tradition referred to here lasted after the death of Jephthah's daughter.

Other considerations why Jephthah could not possibly have sacrificed his daughter; the sacrifice of children was an abomination to the Lord, of which in numberless passages he expresses his detestation, and it was prohibited by an express law, under pain of death, as a defilement of God's sanctuary, and a profanation of His holy name (Leviticus 20:2-3). Such a sacrifice unto the Lord would be an abomination.

No father, merely by his own authority, could put an offending, much less an innocent, child to death upon any account, without the sentence of the magistrate (Deuteronomy 21:18-21) and the consent of the people.

The Mischna, or traditional law of the Jews, is against it; verse 212, "If a Jew should devote his son or daughter, his man or maid servant, who are Hebrews, the devotement would be void, because no man can devote what is not his own, or whose life he has not the absolute disposal of."

Jephthah's vow unto the Lord in Hebrew is "vehayah layhovah, vehaalithihu olah"; the translation of which, according to the most accurate Hebrew scholars, is this: "I will consecrate it to the Lord, or I will offer it for a burnt-offering;" that is, "If it be a thing fit for a burnt-offering, it shall be made one; if fit for the service of God, it shall be consecrated to him."

That conditions of this kind must have been implied in the vow, is evident enough; to have been made without them, it would have been the vow of a heathen or a madman.Iif his neighbor or friend's wife, son, or daughter had been returning from a visit to his family, his vow gave him no right over them. Besides, human sacrifices were ever an abomination to the Lord; and this was one of the grand reasons why God drove out the Canaanites, because they offered their sons and daughters to their gods in the fire.

Hebrews 11:32 lists Jephthah among the men of faith. That Jephthah was a deeply pious man, appears in the whole of his conduct; and that he was well acquainted with the Law of Moses, which prohibited all such sacrifices.

It is really astonishing that the general stream of people should take it for granted that Jephthah murdered his daughter! This is why it is important to know the history behind Scripture.

(I will address your other passages in separate posts, Kit)
My heart holds all secrets; my heart tells no lies.

~Hosea 6:3~
ונדעה נרדפה לדעת את יהוה כשחר נכון מצאו ויבוא כגשם לנו כמלקוש יורה ארץ׃




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Tue Jan 10, 2012 1:55 am
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kimmybee says...



HaydenSmith: Amen to you too! That was a good read, glad to persons defending the faith and not letting so-called Christians choke it. Blessings.
"Simplicity provides a fine line between eloquence and plain"