Wednesday, June 13, 2007

The Bible and Underaged Sex:

I'm not sure if I should give this crank any more attention than he's already gotten from Positive Liberty and Dispatches from the Culture Wars. However, I will note, with irony, that this "Christian Libertarian Theocrat" apparently doesn't even know the Bible as he reads things into it that aren't there.

Mr. Craig seems to enjoy "grouping" homosexuality, bestiality, and pedophilia together in an effort to show that he'd treat all three of these behaviors, explicitly condemned in the Bible, equally (that is, he'd decriminalize all of them).

Jason is intelligent enough to realize that I believe child molestation, besitality, and homosexuality are grossly sinful (the Bible calls them an "abomination") and should never be allowed to occur on this planet.


I spent quite some time describing these efforts in my post to Jason, with links to other sources, which made clear, I think, that I want to eliminate child molestation, bestiality, and homosexuality, but not by passively waiting for "the government"....


When our society departs from Christian teachings regarding homosexuality, bestiality and "intergenerational sex," we lose the possibility of sustaining a free market economy and the rule of law.

The problem is nowhere does the Bible forbid pedophilia as it explicitly does with homosexuality and bestiality. Indeed, according to Ancient Jewish tradition men become adults -- hence "marriageable" and ready for sex -- at 13 and girls at 12.

Indeed, Mr. Craig fondly notes that cross-culturally (Ancient Greece, Rome, etc.) homosexuality often involved pederasty. But most of that pederasty involved boys no younger than 12 of 13, the very age the "Judeo-Christian" tradition set for consent until modern post-1960s sexual morality started to demand age for consent more uniformly rise closer to 18.

(I should also note that cross-culturally, much homosexual pederasty is committed by heterosexual men -- indeed, men who get married, sire families, and flourish in heterosexual relationships. And a boy at the age of 13 is physically about the closet substitute for a woman there is other than a convincing transvestite. Hence they are straight men using teenage boys as substitutes for women. This isn't common in Western culture anymore, but was the dominant form in Ancient Greece where a huge percentage of the male citizen class engaged in such behaviors but still married and raised families. And this also aptly describes most of the homosexual pederasty that currently takes place in Arab cultures, where because of polygamy and sequestration of women, heterosexual males abuse teenage boys for sexual release because no women are available.)

The following from Mark E. Pietrzyk shows that almost every behavior featured on the notorious Dateline NBC's To Catch a Predator series is biblically justified, at least in the age sense (not in the sense that they promote fornication).

An honest examination of the historical record indicates that Biblical law and the Judeo-Christian tradition, far from condemning pedophilia, often condoned sexual relations between adults and children. The contemporary social and legal taboo against sex with children developed only gradually over the centuries, and did not become firmly established until the late nineteenth/early twentieth centuries. The very concepts of age of consent and statutory rape did not derive from Biblical orthodoxy and ancient tradition, but rather evolved out of the same modernist conceptions of individual rights and equality which underlie the contemporary struggle for gay rights. Thus, if the slippery slope argument has any validity at all, it more aptly applies to contemporary proponents of Biblical orthodoxy and “traditional family values” than to proponents of gay rights.


More detailed information on the sexual ethics of ancient Judaism can be found in the Talmud. The Talmud is the record of oral law and commentaries which supplements the written law of Scripture; in Jewish tradition, the oral law is part of the divine revelation received by Moses on Mount Sinai.

According to the Talmud, the recommended age for marriage is sometime after twelve for females, and thirteen for males. Marriage below these ages was generally frowned upon.

Strangely (and previously unbeknownst to me), the Talmud outright endorses pedophilia:

However, a father was allowed to betroth his daughter to another man at an earlier age, and sexual intercourse was regarded as a valid means of sealing a betrothal. The age limit for betrothal through sexual intercourse was shockingly low. According to the Talmud, “A girl of the age of three years and one day may be betrothed by intercourse.”42

This age limit was apparently chosen because, according to Rabbinical discussion, the features of virginity in the young female (the hymen, which breaks and bleeds the first time after intercourse) did not finish developing until the age of three years and one day. Intercourse with a female younger than this was like “putting a finger in the eye,”43 that is, as putting a finger in the eye causes it to tear and tear again, intercourse with a female younger than three causes the hymen to initially bleed but then to grow back again, restoring the sign of virginity. Thus intercourse with a female younger than three years and one day was not a crime; it was simply invalid as a means of sealing betrothal by ending her virgin status, since the signs of virginity would eventually reappear. According to the Talmud, “When a grown-up man has intercourse with a little girl it is nothing, for when a girl is less than [three years], it is as if one puts the finger into the eye.”44

Of course, none of this is meant to endorse these biblically justified practices of underaged sex, but rather to show that as a book of comprehensive morality, the Bible is woefully inadequate.

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