Saturday, September 1, 2012

Jonathan and David and Solomon and the Shulamite

The Hebrew Bible affirms the love between David and Jonathan in 2Samuel1v26 just as it does the love between Solomon and his Shulamite bride in Songs.

As the writer of Songs7v6 says his beloved is "delightful," or "pleasant" (נָּעַמְתְּ - na‘amt), David declares that Jonathan is just as so to him (נָעַמְתָּ - na‘ahmta). However, David expands the intensity of the word with the qualifier: "exceedingly" or "very" (מְאֹד - meh’oth).

As Solomon extols the Shulamite as his "love" (אַהֲבָה - ’ahavah) in Songs7v6, so David lauds "thy love" (אַהֲבָֽתְךָ - ’ahavatekha) when speaking to Jonathan in eulogy. Again, David qualifies the intensity of that love as even "surpassing the love of women" (מֵאַהֲבַת נָשִֽׁים - mé’ahavat nashim). Interestingly, the word "נָשִֽׁים - nashim" is more often translated "wives" than it is "women." The phrase noting the relationship between David and Jonathan can also be legitimately translated as, "thy love to me was wonderful, passing the love of wives" - notable, considering David was polygamous.

David calls Jonathan, "brother" (אָחִי - ’achi) and the writer of Songs4v10 refers to his beloved as, "sister" (אֲחֹתִי - ’achoti). In this type of Semitic literary convention, the allusion to one's darling within the context of sibling relationship in both verses negates neither the quality of affection nor the real amatory experience connoted between the parties involved. Incidentally, in Songs8:1, the Shulamite also uses "brother" (כְּאָח - ke’ach) in referencing her beloved.
© 1 September 2012, ez duz it - the accidental theologian

Sunday, August 28, 2011

1Timothy 1:10 Neither Alludes to Leviticus 20:13 nor Condemns Homosexuality.


Jews reject the Septuagint (LXX), the Greek translation of the original Hebrew Scriptures, as their authoritative Scriptural text; we see it merely as an uninspired translation.

Referring to 1 Timothy 1:10, you contend ἀρσενοκοιτης, was coined from ἄρσενος κοίτην in Leviticus 20:13 (LXX). Actually, ἀρσενοκοιτης is non-existent; the authentic word is “ἀρσενοκοίταις.” Leviticus 20:13 threatens capital punishment upon a nondescript subject: “whoever” (ὃς) - “if he is bedded with” (κοιμηθῇ μετὰ) “a man” (ἄρσενος) as “he would bed a woman” (κοίτην γυναικός). Following grammatical convention, the nominal complement of the verb, “κοίτην,” is properly a woman: “γυναικός,” not a man: “ἄρσενος” as you suggest.

Closer examination shows the passage condemns filial incest, not homosexuality.

The Hebrew text of Leviticus 20:13 specifically condemns “a man,” or “אִישׁ” who commits incest with his “male offspring,” or “זָכָר” Hebrew scholar, Wilhelm Gesenius notes that “זָכָר,” is “a male, as being he through whom the memorial of parents is continued.” a sense which is lost in the LXX and English translations.

Each of the following verses speaks to “זָכָר” as referencing male progeny while employing variant forms of “ἄρσην” in the LXX - thus validating Gesenius’ claim:

Genesis 17:10, 12, 14; Exodus 12:48; 13:12, 15; Leviticus 6:18; 12:2, 7; 18:22; 20:13; Numbers 1:2, 20; 3:15, 39, 40; Numbers 26:62; Joshua 17:2; Every verse in Ezra 8:3-14 mentions “sons of” various chiefs in the Babylonian exodus; Isaiah 66:7 and Jeremiah 20:15.

1Timothy 1:10 neither alludes to Leviticus 20:13 nor condemns homosexuality.

--ez duz it ©2011

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Genesis 19 Condemns Sexual Brutality Within a Military Context, not Homosexuality

Genesis 19 doesn’t condemn homosexuality, but rape committed within a military context.
What occurred in Genesis 14-18?
The Jordan Valley city-states constantly warred for control of regional resources, setting the stage for Genesis 19.

What key strategy was used to attack ancient cities?
The book of Joshua and others recount scouts entering enemy towns to survey strategic weaknesses for the purpose of facilitating military assaults.

What was Lot’s error?
Lot was a foreigner residing in Sodom. He failed to allow the town elders to scrutinize his out-of-town visitors. Lot’s actions exposed the entire community to possible capture or military annihilation.

Who assaulted whom? Why?
“ALL the people, from every quarter” of the town of Sodom, men and women, young and old, demanded to “know” Lot’s visitors. They wanted to sexually brutalize these potentially threatening visitors. Why? Rape is a violent assertion of power designed to bring shame on Lot and deal with his unexamined interlopers.

Would this happen today?
Sure. Confronted with suspected foreign threats, male and female American soldiers attached electrodes to Iraqi prisoners’ genitals, stacked them unclad like cordwood forcing them to wear waste-soiled undergarments over their heads. Also, five New York police officers used a broomstick to rape Haitian-born Abner Louima.

Were the offenders homosexual?
No! The residents of Sodom, the American soldiers and police officers who sexually assaulted their prisoners were motivated by unbridled rage, fear and a desire to humiliate perceived foreign enemies by sexually brutalizing them.

--ez duz it © 9 August 2011

Friday, July 29, 2011

Genesis 2:23-24 and Matthew 19:3-10: Spousal Complementarity - Not a Prohibition of Same-Sex Civil Marriage

Hi, JPaulNorton--

Errant, heterosexist interpretations of Scripture have been used far too long by christianists to unjustly repress Gay people.

The Genesis creation accounts aren’t about invalidating the love of same-sex couples, or affirming a doctrine of complementary bio-plumbing as a criterion for civil marriage.

The only time they note that something was “not good” was man’s solitude. As a corrective, Genesis 2:18 reads: “And the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.”

In Hebrew, “help meet,” or “עֵזֶר כְּנֶגְדּ,” speaks to the suitability of spouses to complement their mates’ unique needs. Though I’ve a keen appreciation for, and close friendships with, women…having been Gay my entire life, it’s impossible that a female spouse could meet my unique needs.

This idea coincides with Romans 1:27 which speaks of “men, leaving the natural use of the woman.” This verse addresses heterosexual Christian men seeking extramarital gratification because the “natural affection” (verse 31) for their spouses grew cold. The verb for “left,” “ἀφέντες,” (verse 27) is in the active voice, indicating the agent’s participatory involvement in performing the verb. Having never been attracted to women, it’s logically impossible for me to have “left their use.” I cannot “leave” a place I’ve never been.

Your “leave and cleave” quip referencing Genesis 2:23-24, or Matthew 19:3-10, is an Adamic interjection, not a divine command or a legally restricting condition limiting civil marriage to heterosexuals.

--ez duz it © 29 July 2011

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Romans 1:18-32 Really IS About Married Heterosexual Christians...


Romans 1:18-32 is about adultery, not homosexuality. It doesn't condemn Gay people but straight (v27) married Christians (v21) who let the natural affection (ἀστόργους, v31) for their spouses grow cold.

The women (v26, Matt19:4) exchanged intimacy with their men for erstwhile gratification. The men (v27, Matt19:4) followed suit, meeting their needs apart from their women. Spouses broke their marital covenants (ἀσυνθέτους, v31) by coveting (πλεονεξίᾳ, v29) illicit sexual relations (πορνείᾳ, v29).

Deception (δόλου, v29) of oneself, spouse and others characterize people trapped in loveless marriages: pretending no elephant’s in the room; boasting (ἀλαζόνας, v30) to others how great the sex is – when there is none, at least with one’s spouse; devising (ἐφευρετὰς κακῶν, v30) trysts, lying about one’s whereabouts. They clear exchanged Biblical teaching about marital fidelity for a lie (v25).

Virulent anti-Gay heterosexual Christian politicians and preachers seeking man-on-man (ἄρσενες ἐν ἄρσεσιν, v27) action come to mind: Former Alabama Attorney General, Troy King; Former Florida House member and former Florida chairman of John McCain’s presidential campaign, Bob Allen; Former Senator Larry Craig; Former Spokane, Washington Mayor, Jim West; Former Washington State Representative, Richard Curtis; Reverend Paul Barnes; Reverend Roy Clements; Reverend Ted Haggard…ad nauseam. Apparently, they preferred satisfying their smoldering longings (ἐξεκαύθησαν ἐν τῇ ὀρέξει, v27) on the down low, rather than with their wives.

Teach your children the truth about Romans 1:18-32...indeed It’s about spousal infidelity, not Gay people.

--ez duz it © 28 July 2011

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Genesis 2:4-25 Does Not Preclude LGBT People From Marrying

Hi, Jason Bowen--

You wrongly manipulate Scripture to condemn Gay people and deny us the right to civilly marry the person we love. Your objections erroneously presume Genesis 2 insists on biological complementarity and production of offspring as marital prerequisites.

The only time the Biblical creation accounts note that something was “not good” was man’s solitude. As a corrective, Genesis 2:18 reads: “And the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.”

The Hebrew expression “help meet” “עֵזֶר כְּנֶגְדּ” speaks to the suitability of spouses to complement their mates’ unique needs. Being a Gay male the entirety of my life, it’s impossible that a female spouse could meet my unique needs.

This aligns perfectly with Romans 1:27 which talks of “men, leaving the natural use of the woman.” This passage addresses heterosexual Christian men who sought gratification “on the down low” outside their marriages because the “natural affection” with their spouses grew cold. However, because the verb for “left” – “ἀφέντες” – in Romans 1:27 is in the active, not passive, voice it’s logically impossible for Gay people to have “left their use.” One cannot “leave” a place where one’s never been!

The production of children isn’t part of the Genesis 2:4-25 creation narrative. Furthermore, “עַל־כֵּן,” translated “wherefore” or “for this cause,” indicates a thematic transition and isn’t legally constricting – a notion that’s in perfect agreement with Matthew 19:3-10.

-ez duz it © 20 July 2011

Romans 1: Straight, Married Christian "Natural Affection" Grown Cold - NOT Gay people

Hi, Jane Bond--

Romans 1:17-32 is about Christian (v 21) couples trapped in loveless marriages and who pursue gratification outside their relationships, not Gay people or our committed love.

What’s “unnatural” is not to love one’s spouse. Nonetheless Paul addresses this theme regularly.

He orders Christian spouses not to hold out on each another’s physical needs in 1Corinthians 7:3-4. It’s ironic, since he permits Christians to marry only as a way of controlling their lusts (verses 1-2). He’s compelled to command Christian couples to love each other in Ephesians 5:22, 25 and 28. While spouses should have “natural affection” for each other, clearly didn’t have it in 2Timothy 3:3. St. Paul says repeatedly that heterosexual Christian couples have intimacy problems!

Christian wives were turned off by their husbands in Romans 1:26. Since they were largely confined to the home, extramural adulterous liaisons were generally not an option. They seem to have taken their satisfaction literally into their own hands.

Because men could move more freely, unsatisfied husbands could seek outlet at bathhouses, brothels or temples. The verb “ἐξεκαύθησαν” implies the glowing cinders of a dying fire, not flames of passion in v27. Also, “among one another” is a legitimate translation of “εἰς ἀλλήλους.”

Romans 1 speaks to married heterosexual Christians, preachers, politicians and “family advocates” who’ve lost their “natural affection” for their spouses, not Gay people and our committed love.

--ez duz it © 20 July 2011