Deuteronomy – Chapter 23: Exclusion From the Assembly

Deuteronomy 22 was filled with some insane crazy misogyny.  I’m still frustrated from reading it.  Let’s move on to Deuteronomy 23.

“No one who has been emasculated by crushing or cutting may enter the assembly of the Lord.” – Deuteronomy 23:1

Yeah, if you’re not a manly man you are cut off from entering the assembly of the Lord.  Go grow a pair before you come back!

“No one born of a forbidden marriage nor any of their descendants may enter the assembly of the Lord, not even in the tenth generation.” – Deuteronomy 23:2

Let’s ignore the meaning of a forbidden marriage and focus on the punishment.  The descendants out to the tenth generation are not allowed to enter the assembly of the Lord.  This is punishing the great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-grandchildren for a ‘crime’ they didn’t commit.  Of course, being forbidden from the assembly of the Lord is a reward in my eyes.

“If one of your men is unclean because of a nocturnal emission, he is to go outside the camp and stay there.” – Deuteronomy 23:10

Wet dreams are icky.  Get the hell out of camp!

“As part of your equipment have something to dig with, and when you relieve yourself, dig a hole and cover up your excrement.” – Deuteronomy 23:13

Phew!  Fortunately God sent down this command otherwise we’d all be shitting in the town square and not covering it.  🙂

“If you enter your neighbor’s vineyard, you may eat all the grapes you want, but do not put any in your basket. If you enter your neighbor’s grainfield, you may pick kernels with your hands, but you must not put a sickle to their standing grain.” – Deuteronomy 23:24

Does the neighbor know this?  In today’s gun-horny society I can easily imagine this going the wrong way!

Deuteronomy 23 was light on misogyny but heavy on punishing the descendants for the crime of their ancestors.  That’s a fair and just god for you.  We also learned that it’s important to bury your shit.  And by shit, I mean your literal shit.  Since the Bible is supposedly the word of God, we must assume the Israelites were shitting everywhere before this command came down.  LOL!

Coming Soon:  Deuteronomy – Chapter 24:  Miscellaneous Laws

Deuteronomy – Chapter 22: Marriage Violations

In the last chapter we learned about stoning your children, breaking a heifer’s neck, and shaving your slave’s head and making her your wife.  Wow!  Deuteronomy 22 has a tough act to follow.  Don’t rule it out, however, as part of this chapter is titled “Marriage Violations”.  I smell me some misogyny!

“If you see your fellow Israelite’s ox or sheep straying, do not ignore it but be sure to take it back to its owner. If they do not live near you or if you do not know who owns it, take it home with you and keep it until they come looking for it. Then give it back. Do the same if you find their donkey or cloak or anything else they have lost. Do not ignore it.” – Deuteronomy 22:1-3

This makes sense.  Every once in a while the authors of the Bible write something that isn’t insane.

“A woman must not wear men’s clothing, nor a man wear women’s clothing, for the Lord your God detests anyone who does this.” – Deuteronomy 22:5

Really?  God has nothing better to do than worry about what clothes someone wears?  Murder, rape, and destruction fill the land, but God demands people not wear clothes of the other gender (as if clothes are gender specific anyway).

“Do not wear clothes of wool and linen woven together.” – Deuteronomy 22:11

God is very concerned about your clothing.  He may let you go hungry but don’t fear, for he’ll be there to punish you if you wear the wrong clothing.

“If a man takes a wife and, after sleeping with her, dislikes her and slanders her and gives her a bad name, saying, ‘I married this woman, but when I approached her, I did not find proof of her virginity,’ then the young woman’s father and mother shall bring to the town elders at the gate proof that she was a virgin.” – Deuteronomy 22:13-15

There’s so much wrong with the science here, but let me ignore that.  If a man doesn’t like the sex, he can accuse the woman of not being a virgin and demand that proof be made.  Was the man a virgin?  Why is it always the women’s virginity that is important in the Bible?

“Then her parents shall display the cloth before the elders of the town, and the elders shall take the man and punish him.” – Deuteronomy 22:17-18

A cloth is proof of virginity?  WTF???

“She shall continue to be his wife; he must not divorce her as long as he lives” – Deuteronomy 22:19

The woman was “taken” to be a wife and forced to prove her virginity (as if virginity matters).  Yet now she is forced to be this man’s wife for the rest of her life.  She is forced against her will to have sex with this man.  That’s rape…rape approved by God.

“If, however, the charge is true and no proof of the young woman’s virginity can be found, she shall be brought to the door of her father’s house and there the men of her town shall stone her to death.” – Deuteronomy 22:20-21

Holy shit!!!  The woman is but to death for not being a virgin!  What about the man?  Why is he not put to death for not being a virgin?  Misogyny at its finest.

“If a man is found sleeping with another man’s wife, both the man who slept with her and the woman must die.” – Deuteronomy 22:22

Well, at least the man is punished too.

“If a man happens to meet in a town a virgin pledged to be married and he sleeps with her, you shall take both of them to the gate of that town and stone them to death—the young woman because she was in a town and did not scream for help, and the man because he violated another man’s wife.” – Deuteronomy 22:23-24

Sigh.  So if the man rapes a virgin and covers her mouth so her screams cannot be heard, she is also put to death for not doing a better job of screaming for help.  Jesus fucking christ.

“But if out in the country a man happens to meet a young woman pledged to be married and rapes her, only the man who has done this shall die. Do nothing to the woman; she has committed no sin deserving death.” – Deuteronomy 22:25-26

This is the first instance in the Bible that I remember in which the man is punished for rape without the woman being punished too.  I’m against the death penalty, so I don’t agree with the death of the man, but do agree he should be punished.  But notice how this only applies in the country.  If the woman is raped in town and can’t scream, death to her!!!

“If a man happens to meet a virgin who is not pledged to be married and rapes her and they are discovered, he shall pay her father fifty shekels of silver. He must marry the young woman, for he has violated her. He can never divorce her as long as he lives.” – Deuteronomy 22:28-29

There’s a catch to Deuteronomy 22:25-26.  It only applies if the woman was pledged to be married.  If she wasn’t pledged to be married and is raped, she MUST marry the man who raped her.  What the fuck?  Seriously?  Please excuse me for a few minutes while I bang my head on the wall.

“A man is not to marry his father’s wife; he must not dishonor his father’s bed.” – Deuteronomy 22:30

Yeah, okay, I wouldn’t want to marry my mom either.  But what if your father’s wife is your step-mother?  Why can’t you marry her?  Men are allowed multiple wives.  Why are women not allowed multiple husbands?  Oh yeah, misogyny.

A few things make sense in this chapter but most of it is filled with crazy misogyny.  A woman who is raped is found not-guilty if she was raped in the country and already pledged to be married.  However, if she was raped in town, she is guilty.  If the woman is raped anywhere and not pledged to be married, she must marry the man who raped her.  Yes, that is actually in the bible as a command from God.  Un-fucking-believable.

Coming Soon:  Deuteronomy – Chapter 23:  Exclusion From the Assembly

Proverbs 30:17

The last three crazy Bible verse Tuesdays have dealt with talking animals (two donkeys (okay, really one donkey discussed in the OT and again in NT) and one snake).  Today I switch topics from talking animals to killing children.

“The eye that mocks a father, that scorns an aged mother, will be pecked out by the ravens of the valley, will be eaten by the vultures.” – Proverbs 30:17

The Christian apologist will say that the Bible is not really telling us to kill children who mock and/or disobey their parents.  The apologist will say this is a metaphor to stress the importance of honoring mothers and fathers.  Maybe this is true IF this were the only verse in the Bible suggesting children should be killed for disobeying their parents.  Unfortunately there are MANY verses in the Bible commanding the death of children.  This is one of them.  I’m not sure what’s better, death by stoning death or death by vultures?  Hmmmm.

Deuteronomy – Chapter 21: Atonement for an Unsolved Murder

It’s the start of a new week so it’s time to dig further into the book of Deuteronomy.  So far it’s been filled with death and destruction with much bloodshed.  I expect we’ll see more of that in the coming chapters.  Let’s find out.

“If someone is found slain, lying in a field in the land the Lord your God is giving you to possess, and it is not known who the killer was, your elders and judges shall go out and measure the distance from the body to the neighboring towns. Then the elders of the town nearest the body shall take a heifer that has never been worked and has never worn a yoke and lead it down to a valley that has not been plowed or planted and where there is a flowing stream. There in the valley they are to break the heifer’s neck.” – Deuteronomy 21:1-4

What…the…fuck?!?!?  Break a heifer’s neck?  I’m not a crime detective, but I’d start with searching for evidence and interviewing the townspeople before breaking a heifer’s neck!!!

“Then all the elders of the town nearest the body shall wash their hands over the heifer whose neck was broken in the valley, and they shall declare: ‘Our hands did not shed this blood, nor did our eyes see it done. Accept this atonement for your people Israel, whom you have redeemed, Lord, and do not hold your people guilty of the blood of an innocent person.’” – Deuteronomy 21:6-8

An all-knowing god needs the Israelites to wash their hands over a dead heifer to know they are innocent of the crime?  Are you freaking kidding me??!!

“…if you notice among the captives a beautiful woman and are attracted to her, you may take her as your wife. Bring her into your home and have her shave her head, trim her nails and put aside the clothes she was wearing when captured. After she has lived in your house and mourned her father and mother for a full month, then you may go to her and be her husband and she shall be your wife. If you are not pleased with her, let her go wherever she wishes. You must not sell her or treat her as a slave, since you have dishonored her.” – Deuteronomy 21:11-14

More misogyny!  God says it’s okay to take a slave as a wife without her permission.  And then when you are done with her you are allowed to toss her out the door.  What love God has for his creations!

“If a man has two wives…” – Deuteronomy 21:15

Let’s stop right here.  To all of the conservative bible-thumping Republicans pushing “family values”, shut the fuck up.

“If someone has a stubborn and rebellious son who does not obey his father and mother and will not listen to them when they discipline him, his father and mother shall take hold of him and bring him to the elders at the gate of his town. They shall say to the elders, ‘This son of ours is stubborn and rebellious. He will not obey us. He is a glutton and a drunkard.’ Then all the men of his town are to stone him to death. You must purge the evil from among you. All Israel will hear of it and be afraid.” – Deuteronomy 21:18-21

Wow!  A son who does not obey his father is to be stoned to death.  Here’s where we know (as if we didn’t already) that the Bible is all bullshit.  If this law was ever followed, all of humanity would have ended.  EVERY son disobeys his father at times.  That is part of childhood.  If we stoned every son who disobeyed his father we’d end up stoning all sons!!!

“If someone guilty of a capital offense is put to death and their body is exposed on a pole, you must not leave the body hanging on the pole overnight.” – Deuteronomy 21:22-23

This is messed up, but compared to the first twenty-one verses it seems tame.

That does it for Deuteronomy 21.  It was one messed up chapter.  Stone your son to death?  Break a heifer’s neck?  Shave a slaves head and take her as a wife before tossing her out?  Yikes!!!

Coming Soon:  Deuteronomy – Chapter 22:  Marriage Violations

Thank God I’m Atheist – Podcast

On this wonderful Sunday (wonderful because I’m doing something other than wasting my time in church) I want to share with you a fantastic podcast I listen to on a regular podcast.  It’s the “Thank God I’m Atheist” podcast and is produced by two former Mormons still living in the Salt Lake City, Utah area.

Thanks God I’m Atheist

These guys share several religion related news stories each week and are hilarious!  They’ll toss around the f-bomb from time to time so it is explicit, but not nearly as explicit as say the Cognitive Dissonance podcast or The Scathing Atheist Podcast.  These guys are a bit lighter in their conversations and like to throw humor into their discussions of news stories.

I encourage you to check it out if you’re not already listening to it.  It’s great podcast!

Deuteronomy – Chapter 20: Going to War

The take away from the last chapter in Deuteronomy is that God commanded the Israelites to show no pity on anyone.  What a great moral, right?  Sigh.  Today’s chapter is titled Going to War, which is interested since the Israelites have been doing nothing but warring for quite some time.

“When you go to war against your enemies and see horses and chariots and an army greater than yours, do not be afraid of them, because the Lord your God, who brought you up out of Egypt, will be with you.” – Deuteronomy 20:1

Of course he will.  He loves spilling blood!

“Has anyone built a new house and not yet begun to live in it? Let him go home, or he may die in battle and someone else may begin to live in it.” – Deuteronomy 20:5

The biblical version of draft dodging.  🙂

“When you march up to attack a city, make its people an offer of peace. If they accept and open their gates, all the people in it shall be subject to forced labor and shall work for you.” – Deuteronomy 20:10-11

WTF?!?!  Those are the terms of peace???  We are attacking you for no reason other than God telling us.  You offer peace.  We offer your lives in exchange for you being our slaves.  What…the…fuck?!?!?!

“As for the women, the children, the livestock and everything else in the city, you may take these as plunder for yourselves.” – Deuteronomy 20:14

Save the women and children so we may rape them!

“However, in the cities of the nations the Lord your God is giving you as an inheritance, do not leave alive anything that breathes.” – Deuteronomy 20:16

Children and babies put to death, all in the name of God.

“When you lay siege to a city for a long time, fighting against it to capture it, do not destroy its trees by putting an ax to them, because you can eat their fruit. Do not cut them down. Are the trees people, that you should besiege them?” – Deuteronomy 20:19

Yeah!  There’s no need for us to act like savages.  It’s one thing to murder everyone, but cut down a fruit tree?  That’s savagery!

LOL!  This was an interesting chapter on the rules of war.  God is not a very good negotiator if he’s really looking for peace.  We know, of course, he’s not looking for peace, so I’m not sure why he even has the Israelites ask for it.  Nonetheless, it was funny to read.

Coming Soon:  Deuteronomy – Chapter 21:  Atonement for an Unsolved Murder

Deuteronomy – Chapter 19: Cities of Refuge

Today’s chapter in Deuteronomy is titled Cities of Refuge.  Sounds like a great name for an action movie!

“When the Lord your God has destroyed the nations whose land he is giving you, and when you have driven them out and settled in their towns and houses, then set aside for yourselves three cities in the land the Lord your God is giving you to possess.” – Deuteronomy 19:1-2

In other words, as soon as you’re done murdering and raping in my name, I’m going to give you three more cities!!!

“This is the rule concerning anyone who kills a person and flees there for safety—anyone who kills a neighbor unintentionally, without malice aforethought.” – Deuteronomy 19:4

Yeah, okay, that’s fine.  Although if the people are allowed to live, shouldn’t the Israelites be told to not kill them?  Wouldn’t that be simpler than building three new cities?

“For instance, a man may go into the forest with his neighbor to cut wood, and as he swings his ax to fell a tree, the head may fly off and hit his neighbor and kill him.” – Deuteronomy 19:5

LOL!  The bible gets quite specific in its possibilities of accidents that might lead to murder.

“Do this so that innocent blood will not be shed in your land, which the Lord your God is giving you as your inheritance, and so that you will not be guilty of bloodshed.” – Deuteronomy 19:10

Excuse me but now God is concerned with shedding innocent blood?!?!  Now?!?!  He just commanded the Israelites to rape, murder, and pillage.  Children and babies were killed!  God commanded the shedding of innocent blood, but all is okay because now he has decided shedding innocent blood is bad.  OMG!!!

“One witness is not enough to convict anyone accused of any crime or offense they may have committed. A matter must be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses.” – Deuteronomy 19:15

This was stated a couple of chapters ago.  I had problems with it then and still do now.  In the absence of credible evidence, it is not right nor just to convict a person of a crime from witnesses alone.

“Show no pity: life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot.” – Deuteronomy 19:21

This verse sums up the problem with the bible.  God simply does not care about the people.  There is no compassion.  There is no caring.  There is no understanding at all.  A god who demands his people to show no pity for others is not a god I choose to worship.  Give me Satan any day before this god.

Coming Soon:  Deuteronomy – Chapter 20:  Going to War

2 Peter 2:16

It’s Crazy Bible Verse Tuesday!  Two weeks ago we took a look at a talking snake.  Last week we took a look at a talking donkey.  This week we look at the same talking donkey, but now discussed in the New Testament..  LOL!

“But he was rebuked for his wrongdoing by a donkey—an animal without speech—who spoke with a human voice and restrained the prophet’s madness.” – 2 Peter 2:16

In case you thought talking animals are mentioned only in the Old Testament, here’s a talking donkey discussed in the New Testament.  A talking donkey!!!  Sorry, but as I said last week, donkeys cannot talk.  It is physically impossible for donkeys to speak.

If someone today told you his/her donkey spoke real words, you’d call them crazy and demand evidence.  Not the case with the bible.  No evidence needed.  If it’s written down in the bible, it must be the word of God.  We are told we MUST believe in it.  Nope.  Not me.  I live in a world of logic, reason, and reality.  I love the world I live in and I will never give it up for the absurd evidence-lacking world of talking animals in the bible.

Update:  I made a mistake in the original posting of this.  I stated this was a second talking donkey in the Bible.  It’s not.  It’s referring to the talking donkey in the Old Testament.  I’ve updated the text above to reflect this.  My apologies.  

Deuteronomy – Chapter 18: Offerings for Priests and Levites

The previous chapter of the bible had a bit of misogyny as well as some weird rules allowing only two witnesses to condemn a possibly innocent person to death.  Can Deuteronomy 18 top that?  Let’s find out.

“The Levitical priests—indeed, the whole tribe of Levi—are to have no allotment or inheritance with Israel. They shall live on the food offerings presented to the Lord, for that is their inheritance.” – Deuteronomy 18:1

And this is why I have no problem with the tithing back during the time of Moses.  This is a socialistic law that looks out for the benefit of all in society.

“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

Um…wait a second.  God doesn’t want others to sacrifice their son or daughter?  Then why the hell did he command Abraham to sacrifice his son Isaac?  Hypocrite!

“Anyone who does these things is detestable to the Lord…” – Deuteronomy 18:12

This means that God himself is detestable to himself.  God has done the very things that he has claimed he detests.  Sigh.

“The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among you, from your fellow Israelites. You must listen to him.” – Deuteronomy 18:15

I’m guessing God will provide no evidence this prophet is a real prophet.  In other words, God will choose to NOT reveal himself to the people once again.

“But a prophet who presumes to speak in my name anything I have not commanded, or a prophet who speaks in the name of other gods, is to be put to death.” – Deuteronomy 18:20

Exactly how are the Israelites supposed to know the difference between a true and false prophet if God doesn’t reveal himself?

“You may say to yourselves, ‘How can we know when a message has not been spoken by the Lord?’ If what a prophet proclaims in the name of the Lord does not take place or come true, that is a message the Lord has not spoken. That prophet has spoken presumptuously, so do not be alarmed.” – Deuteronomy 18:21-22

ROFL!  As if it were that easy.  What evidence will the Israelites have to determine this?  None since God will not provide any.

Most of Deuteronomy 18 focuses on not sacrificing children or following false prophets.  God himself ordered the sacrifice of at least one child, Isaac, in the bible, not to mention the ‘sacrifice’ of tens to hundreds of thousands of non-Israelites.  God ordered the murder and destruction of towns in the way of the Israelites.  Yet God is now saying to no longer sacrifice children.  ROFL!

Coming Soon:  Deuteronomy – Chapter 19:  Cities of Refuge

Deuteronomy – Chapter 17: Law Courts

We’re chugging along through Deuteronomy.  Today’s chapter, Chapter 17, takes a look at law courts.

“Do not sacrifice to the Lord your God an ox or a sheep that has any defect or flaw in it, for that would be detestable to him.” – Deuteronomy 17:1

God only likes those things that are perfect!  One tiny blemish and you will displease him in your sacrifice.  Your heart may be in it, but if that sheep has a tiny patch of hair missing, don’t you dare sacrifice it for fear of pissing off God.

“If it is true and it has been proved that this detestable thing has been done in Israel, take the man or woman who has done this evil deed to your city gate and stone that person to death.” – Deuteronomy 17:4-5

Doing evil in the eyes of the Lord is punishable by stoning to death.  What is evil?  As we’ve seen it could be anything as bad as murder to as slight as sacrificing an animal with a slight defect.  Regardless, the punishment is death.

“On the testimony of two or three witnesses a person is to be put to death, but no one is to be put to death on the testimony of only one witness.” – Deuteronomy 17:6

Two witnesses is all it takes for you to be put to death.  Physical evidence required?  Nope.  Just two people who don’t like you, speaking against you, and you can be put to death for doing something you may not have done.

“If cases come before your courts that are too difficult for you to judge—whether bloodshed, lawsuits or assaults—take them to the place the Lord your God will choose.  Go to the Levitical priests and to the judge who is in office at that time. Inquire of them and they will give you the verdict.” – Deuteronomy 17:8-9

The priests are in charge of judging the most heinous accusations?  Seriously?  I’m sure that will end well.  Priests are perfect right?  It’s not as if we see priests today raping little boys.

“Anyone who shows contempt for the judge or for the priest who stands ministering there to the Lord your God is to be put to death.” – Deuteronomy 17:12

Disagree with the priests?  Death to you!!!  The next several verses discuss choosing a king to reside over each land the Israelites occupy.

“He must not take many wives, or his heart will be led astray.” – Deuteronomy 17:17

How dare those sneaky women trick a man!  If a king isn’t able to rule perfectly, it must be the woman’s fault!  More misogyny.

“It is to be with him, and he is to read it all the days of his life so that he may learn to revere the Lord his God and follow carefully all the words of this law and these decrees and not consider himself better than his fellow Israelites and turn from the law to the right or to the left.” – Deuteronomy 17:19-20

Here is something I agree with and a bit of sense coming from God.  God is correct in declaring that a king should not consider himself better than his fellow people.  The king is one of the people, not above the people.  The same goes for all leaders in today’s world.

That concludes Deuteronomy 17.  It’s a pretty scary world to live in if it only takes the word of two others and no evidence to condemn you to death.  Yikes!  We also learn that women can corrupt their manly kings.  Is a man really a rightful king if he blames his wife for his wrongdoings?  In the bible, yes.  Women are always to blame.  With that I will leave you.  J

Coming Soon:  Deuteronomy – Chapter 18:  Offerings for Priests and Levites