The Argument Room With whysoserious?

Previously, commenter whysoserious? made his appearance in the post “A Tired Old Argument” with this comment.   I made a short response and turned my complete response into a post all it’s own, “The Necropsy Continues“.   In that post as well as the comment section we went back and forth.  Commenter whysoserious? made his final argument in the comments of “Black Knighting Churchian Marriage“.

It was a fascinating argument.  Quite to my surprise (well, perhaps not), whysoserious? staked out an interesting position on marriage:

Marriage is merely a long term, tightly regulated form of prostitution which provides more resources to either party.

Whysoserious? initially argued in opposition to me with a technical argument over the meaning of the Greek word kollao by shifting focus to the Greek word for prostitute, “porne“.  He claimed that kollao didn’t mean sex within the context of 1st Corinthians 6:15-16, it meant marriage, because porne didn’t mean prostitute, it meant something else.  In his words:

Since porne can be used to describe general promiscuity or cult prostitution, this passage warns Christians that they should not be married to a promiscuous woman or cult prostitute.

Consider his argument: Paul was not forbidding sex with prostitutes, he was forbidding Christians from marrying prostitutes.  The only prohibition in Scripture that forbids sex with prostitutes is in 1st Corinthians 6:15-16 and his argument removes this prohibition, so in effect whysoserious? was claiming it was perfectly acceptable for a Christian man to have sex with prostitutes as long as he didn’t marry them.

It appeared that whysoserious? had not anticipated this when he made his argument and privately I predicted to some associates that it left him with a choice:  he either reversed course on the meaning of kollao or he would attack Genesis 2:24 and my money was on attacking Genesis 2:24 as the authority on marriage.  Why?  Because women rule the modern church and given a choice, “sex with an eligible virgin is marriage” would win out over “my husband can legitimately have sex with whores” every single time.  As predicted, whysoserious? attacked the authority of Genesis 2:24.

The reader of the Bible is assumed to know what marriage is, just like he’s assumed to know what a man is, or a king, or a nation. These words, though integral to understanding the Bible, are left to the reader’s cultural knowledge of the ancient Near East.  Genesis 2:24 is NOT a law or a definition; it is the conclusion to a story that explains why a man cleaves to his wife, and they become one flesh.

Twaddle.  Scripture defines these terms, they are not “left to the reader’s cultural knowledge of the ancient Near East”.  Consider the root of the word “culture” is cult, which presumes a common system of belief.

  • MarriageGenesis 2:24.  The grant of authority for initiating marriage and the procedure for initiating marriage.
  • King: 1st Samuel 8.  A man who will rule over the people, followed by a long explanation of what the king will do in ruling over them.
  • Nation: Genesis 10:5.  A people who according to their families (generally related), share a common land and a common tongue.

Keep in mind the overriding goal of whysoserious? is preserving doctrinal continuity of the lies established by the early church.   The unbiblical “requirement” of a commitment ceremony (wedding) neatly avoids the nasty problem (created by churchian lies) of the adultery epidemic caused by claiming that marriage is begun with a commitment ceremony, not sex.  This is the key point and the entire churchian facade stands or falls on this point.

Regardless of what he claims, whysoserious? capitulated on the meaning of dabaq in Genesis 2:24 and kollao in 1st Corinthians 6:16 with his attack on Genesis 2:24 as the authority for marriage.

It also meant he had to have a replacement authority and he chose Ezekiel 16:8.

Ezekiel 16:8 demonstrates that an oath viewed as a necessary component of marriage. It doesn’t establish a requirement, it just demonstrates a preexisting one which elucidates the nature of marriage.

Notice that whysoserious? is claiming a preexisting requirement that does not actually exist.  He claims we don’t have a definition of marriage, we simply understand it in a manner of cultural understanding.

More twaddle.

When the Pharisees asked Jesus if a man could divorce his wife for any reason at all, they were asking about the meaning of the word “indecency” (ervah) as used in Deuteronomy 24:1.

When a man takes a wife and marries her, and it happens that she finds no favor in his eyes because he has found some indecency in her, and he writes her a certificate of divorce and puts it in her hand and sends her out from his house

In order to divorce a wife there first has to be a marriage that makes the woman a wife, so  Jesus quoted the authority on marriage, Genesis 2:24.

For this reason a man shall leave his father and his mother, and be joined to his wife; and they shall become one flesh.

Notice that Jesus did not cite Ezekiel 16:8 as the authority on marriage, rather, Genesis 2:24.  The Apostle Paul quoted part of that passage in 1st Corinthians 6:16 and in Ephesians 5:31 he quoted the entire verse as the authority on marriage.  Nowhere in Scripture is Ezekiel 16:8 quoted as an authority on marriage.  Nowhere in the New Testament is Ezekiel 16:8 referenced or quoted.

That was where the previous discussion ended.  Whysoserious? has now come back with another argument.

 

 

Hi Toad,

Hope all has been well with you these past few months. I’ve followed your recent posts, and have appreciated your flexibility in accepting a new perspective on the issue of sex and marriage. Our previous discussion, while convincing neither of us of anything, brought some nuances of interpretation to light, and has helped me in my own study. If you’d humor me, I’d like to do something similar here, hopefully giving us both a chance to sharpen our arguments for mutual benefit.

Despite your best efforts, I still am of the opinion that sex with an eligible woman is not sufficient to initiate marriage. You and I agree that sex unifies a man and a woman as one flesh, and that genetic transfer and other physiological effects of semen are significant in this process. This is supported by Pauline discussions of the flesh (sarx, I think) as the physicality of the body – the part of us that goes to dust as we decompose. Incidentally, this brings us to the main subject I’d like to discuss: death.

We know that a marriage ends when the husband dies (Rom. 7:1-3). However, a widow still exhibits all the genetic and physiological markers of being one flesh with the deceased. How then can a widow remarry? For she would be one flesh with both her “husbands,” dead and living – adulterating them inside her! If a woman becomes a man’s flesh, and he dies, his flesh still “lives” in her. Her flesh is his flesh, permanently, regardless of his status. Thus, a remarried widow is one flesh with two distinct men, and yet is married to only one of them. And, there is nothing immoral about her. Therefore, the proposition, “A man and a woman are married if and only if they have legitimate one-flesh/sexual relations” is false.

To summarize: marriage => sex => one flesh =>! marriage

Of course, we must check our work, investigating if this is consistent with the rest of the Bible.

Genesis 2:5-24 provides an etiology for sexuality that ends with, “Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.” This, for our purposes, reduces to, “Men have sex with their wives, and they become one flesh.” It says nothing about the results of men sleeping with non-wives, or, for that matter, about dogs playing poker. That is left to be discovered by the reader. So far, so good.

Matthew 19:4-6 provides more insight, this time in the context of divorce. We are told, ‘He answered, “Have you not read that he who created them from the beginning made them male and female, and said, ‘Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’? So they are no longer two but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let not man separate.’ Paraphrased, “God created male and female, and said when a man takes a wife they become one flesh. So don’t split up what God made.” Again, the domain of this statement is restricted to married one-flesh couples, without notice to unmarried ones. Here, however, a problem does arise: if unity of flesh is permanent, how can a married pair be separated?

The only answer is that Christ is not speaking of breaking the natural, fleshly unity of married sexual partners, but rather of a rupture of their marriage as a separate entity entirely. But that’s not all: if death ends marriage, and we’re not to separate what “God has joined together,” are married people exempt from judicial execution? Of course not. Going back to how Paul presents marriage as a legal matter in Romans 7, we see Jesus’s injunction is best interpreted as a reminder that God created marriage as an institution of unity for which his rules, and his rules alone, apply. It is clear that “one flesh” and marriage exist as two distinct creations – the former natural and the latter covenantal.

My explanation fits well with the rest of Scripture. Samson and Rahab can get good marks in the Bible despite their sexual escapades since they aren’t violating any marriage contract. Paul, in 1 Corinthians 6, which I wrote much about last time, condemns the use of cult prostitutes because it would be shameful to make one’s own Christian temple service a false god. And so on, and so on.

(This is not to say that promiscuity is good; clearly, being one flesh with a lot of different people can have negative consequences for mind, spirit, and body. But that doesn’t mean such behavior is morally repugnant, just reckless and unhealthy.)

What do you think? As always, thanks for reading.

Miscellany:
> I’ve been meaning to ask for a while, but how does the Bible define sex? I’ve made some interesting progress on this question myself, and I’d love to hear your perspective.
> If you haven’t, I’d highly recommend looking up sexual euphemisms in the Bible, then reading Ruth 3. Apparently there’s some innuendo that isn’t present in a typical study.
> I still don’t get why you don’t see Ezekiel 16:8 as a useful portrait of marriage. Even though the passage is metaphorical, metaphors derive their meaning from their correspondence to reality. To say we can’t learn about marriage from it is to say we can’t learn about a building from a photograph.

 

I suppose I must give you credit for trying.

appreciated your flexibility in accepting a new perspective on the issue of sex and marriage

This characterization is not correct.  I came to the conclusion, based on the relevant text, that becoming “one flesh” was not a one-shot act but a continuous process that occurs every time sex happens.  In the same way that a man automatically gives his commitment to marriage with the act of intercourse and thus renews his commitment to the marriage with every subsequent act, becoming one flesh is an ongoing process in much the same way that sanctification is an ongoing process for a Christian.

Our previous discussion, while convincing neither of us of anything

Speak for yourself.   I’m convinced you attacked my exegesis in order to defend a position, rather than as part of a focus on truth.  You proved that when you changed your position repeatedly and finally capitulated by attacking Genesis 2:24 as the authority on marriage.

I still am of the opinion that sex with an eligible woman is not sufficient to initiate marriage.

You misstate my position. Sex with an eligible virgin initiates marriage. An eligible non-virgin such as a widow or divorced woman must consent to the marriage first before the sex will initiate the marriage. I have made this point repeatedly.

We know that a marriage ends when the husband dies (Rom. 7:1-3). However, a widow still exhibits all the genetic and physiological markers of being one flesh with the deceased. How then can a widow remarry? For she would be one flesh with both her “husbands,” dead and living – adulterating them inside her!

Absurd. If a man marries a widow he already knows he is getting used goods, so your point is ridiculous. How can she remarry? Because it is not forbidden as adultery or anything else and if a man is not forbidden to marry her, he may ( c.f. Leviticus 21:13-15).  Based on that absurdity, you claim:

the proposition, “A man and a woman are married if and only if they have legitimate one-flesh/sexual relations” is false.

Non sequitur.  The proposition that “A man and an eligible virgin are married when they have sexual relations” is true.  While your argument indicates becoming one flesh does not consist solely of the mixing of DNA and the microbiome, you do not explain what a “legitimate” one-flesh/sexual relation is.  When it comes to sex, it’s either lawful or unlawful.  Moral or immoral, in other words.  Legitimate?  You imply that a third party other than God decides what legitimate or illegitimate is.

To summarize: marriage => sex => one flesh =>! marriage

This is the key point you are still arguing from last time and it’s still incorrect.  You are still claiming that first is a commitment ceremony, then sex, which creates one flesh and that is what makes one married.  Omitting the ceremony means there is no marriage.   This is an argument completely unsupported by Scripture.

There is no requirement for a ceremony, unless you want to call the act of penetration a ceremony. The virgin has no agency and her consent/commitment is not required. The commitment of the man is automatic with the act of penetration.  Therefore, sexual intercourse with an eligible virgin is to marry her.

Genesis 2:5-24 provides an etiology for sexuality

False characterization and completely incorrect. You are trying to support your ridiculous assertion from our last go-round that Genesis 2:24 is merely a story and the model for marriage is Ezekiel 16:8. As pointed out above, which one did Christ quote as the authority for marriage?

This, for our purposes, reduces to, “Men have sex with their wives, and they become one flesh.”

This is a lie. It is not for “OUR” purposes, but rather for your own and you intentionally misstate it. When men have sex with an eligible virgin, the virgin becomes his wife and they become one flesh. You are still attempting to make the back-handed claim that a ceremony is necessary to make the woman a “wife” before the sex occurs.

The most interesting part of this is you are no longer arguing that “dabaq” means something other than sex, rather, you’re trying to claim Ezekiel 16 as your authority for marriage in order to get support for a commitment ceremony.   You say that a photo gives information about the building, but when the blueprint is available one uses the blueprint as the primary source for how the building was constructed and looks at the photo for help in visualizing the finished product.

It seems, however, that I need to address Ezekiel 16.

The prelude to verse 8 of Ezekiel 16 describes the child that was born and without cutting the cord (which means she was still attached to the placenta), the child was not washed (she was bloody) or clothed, but thrown into a field to die. God passed her by in this condition and said “Live!” and she lived.

She grew tall, and still naked, it was apparent she had reached the time for love because her breasts had formed and she had pubic hair. When God passed by again, He saw that she was ready for love. After all those years, was she still covered with blood from her birth? No, but she was naked.

God’s next act was to spread His skirt over her and cover her nakedness, a euphemism for sex. Yes, I get the reference to Ruth 3, but I’m not sure you studied Ruth’s story.

Ruth was a widow (not a virgin) who had no heir.  It wasn’t just the redemption of the land at issue, there was also the near kinsman obligation of the Levirate marriage.  While she obviously offered her body to him when she told him she was a near relative and he should spread his skirt over her, Boaz wasn’t eligible to marry her until after the closer relative refused and and allowed Boaz to redeem her.  He made that point to her and from the text I don’t see them having sex that night, although I doubt if he’d have pursued the matter of redeeming/marrying her if she hadn’t crawled into bed with him first.  In addition, Boaz was an older man of great wealth.  Given the adherence to the command to be fruitful and multiply, he would certainly have already had a wife.  Which would make the Levirate marriage attractive to him from the standpoint of family dynamics.  Sometimes God commands that a man take another wife.  His attentiveness toward her during the harvest indicates he was probably attracted to her.  His comments to her indicate he had already learned who she was and her story.

Back to Ezekiel though. With the sex, they are married. If this were in keeping with your narrative you would need to see God swearing an oath first, which would establish that they were husband and wife, but we don’t see that.  From your previous comments you admit that Ezekiel 16:8 does not have the oath as a requirement.  Instead, you claim it illustrates a preexisting requirement that you cannot cite based on an amorphous “knowledge” of ancient near-East practices.

In addition, your version of marital requirements based on Ezekiel raise lots of questions.

  • Is a marriage automatically a covenant?
  • If it’s a covenant, does that mean God is a party to the marriage, or is this a lesser covenant between two people?
  • How can there be a covenant between two people when one of them does not want to be married to the other? (Exodus 21:7-10; Deuteronomy 22:28-29; Deuteronomy 21:10-14 examples of women sold, raped and captured into marriage against their will).
  • If the covenant includes God as one of the parties to the marriage, is such a covenant marriage formed with every marriage, including a marriage to widows and legitimately divorced women, or is it only formed when the blood of the virgin is shed?
  • Is God’s involvement bifurcated, where God is a party to the virgin marriage covenant, but not a party to the “lesser” covenant marriage in which the woman was not a virgin?

I find that because Christ cited Genesis 2:24 as the authority on marriage, whatever authority Ezekiel 16:8 might have is decidedly inferior and the fact that nowhere else in Scripture is Ezekiel 16 cited as having anything to do with marriage means it has no authority. Oaths, celebrations, betrothal periods and all manner of other pomp and circumstance are all strictly voluntary. In the event an agreement to do such things is made, they are mandatory due to the requirements of Numbers 30:2. But these voluntary acts are not required to initiate a marriage in the absence of such agreements.

God chose to swear an oath in Ezekiel 16:8 but He was not required to. The fun part is when you do a careful search for all the covenants in which God identifies the covenant as a covenant. Where God says He made a covenant with someone. What do these covenants have in common, these agreements to which God is a party? The shedding of blood. And… look at that. Virgins come with a hymen as standard equipment, designed to bleed after being torn in the first instance of sexual intercourse.

And, of course, the only mention of a covenant marriage in Scripture between men and women is in Malachi 2, which was instructions to the priests. The context of that mention of the wife of his youth, his wife by covenant, was a direct reference to Leviticus 21, where the priests were commanded to take only a virgin for a wife, not a widow, a divorced woman or a woman profaned by harlotry. In other words, the implication is the covenant was the result of shed blood that came from marrying a virgin.

So, it’s not surprising that we find in verse 9 that immediately afterward God bathed her with water and washed off the blood. Where did the blood come from? It wasn’t from her birth so many years ago, it was from her ruptured hymen, the blood that initiated the covenant which God sealed with his oath.

 

if unity of flesh is permanent, how can a married pair be separated?

If they could not be separated, why was Jesus saying not to do it? The fact He did means they can be separated. To what end? Brokenness.

 

The only answer is that Christ is not speaking of breaking the natural, fleshly unity of married sexual partners, but rather of a rupture of their marriage as a separate entity entirely.

More non-sequitur. Your answer fails on the brokenness of your supporting argument before we get to examining it on its face.

 

It is clear that “one flesh” and marriage exist as two distinct creations – the former natural and the latter covenantal.

Twaddle.  If marriage was bifurcated into two distinct creations (as you claim) then getting caught raping an eligible virgin would not make her married because neither the man or woman voiced commitment. Even more preposterous is the idea that a “ceremony” would be held that would make them married.  Suppose they refuse to commit?  Would they be coerced into voicing commitment?  The technical term for that is fraud.

If you can concede that the man automatically makes a commitment to marriage with the act of penetration and admit the virgin’s consent and commitment is not required, you will be at the point of understanding that the “commitment ceremony” is the act of sexual intercourse.

Further, if marriage was bifurcated as you say, then it would be possible to “marry” someone you’d never met simply by making a commitment to them.

Somewhere off in the weeds, as indicated earlier, is this concept of a “covenental” marriage.  It’s mentioned exactly one time in Malachi 2:14.   Why is there no mention of a marriage covenant anywhere else in Scripture?  Leviticus 21:13-15 requires the priests to marry only a virgin and they are forbidden to marry a widow, a divorced woman or a woman profaned by harlotry.  Malachi 2:13-16 was instruction to the priests as well and references Leviticus 21:15 with the reference to Godly offspring.

 

In Conclusion

Jesus quoted Genesis 2:24 as the authority on marriage.  The Apostle Paul quoted Genesis 2:24 as the authority on marriage.  No-one cites Ezekiel 16:8 for anything.

The word kollao, as used in 1st Corinthians 6:16 means sex because the word porne means prostitute.  Which means that the word dabaq means sex in Genesis 2:24, which means the eligible virgin is married when she has sex.

We don’t know what a covenant marriage is or who it applies to or anything else, we can only make educated guesses.

 

This Argument Is Now Closed

12 Responses to The Argument Room With whysoserious?

  1. whysoserious? says:

    Saw this post just last night, and here are my thoughts.

    Before we get to the good stuff, I’d like to explain my reasons for being here. I’m the sort of person who enjoys examining other people’s conceptions of the Bible. Specifically, Christian sexuality has been an interest of mine ever since I started questioning the standard churchian line a couple years ago. Toad, you make rigorous arguments – and for the most part I would agree with them – except, for the life of me, something about them doesn’t “feel right” with the metaphysics surrounding volition, sex, and marriage. Maybe that’s a bad reason for questioning something. So, when you question my intentions, or say I’m here to promote ideology not truth, please be aware I’m just trying to identify and articulate a flaw I sense in this interpretation. Disrespect me for following “muh feels” – I don’t care – but don’t lie and say I care nothing of truth. Yes, I change my mind, because I realize I don’t have all the answers. If I did, do you think I’d be here?

    A few words on my prior arguments. I’ll justify everything later – this is merely to establish where I am today.

    Marriage is merely a long term, tightly regulated form of prostitution which provides more resources to either party. – Me
    I was a little brash in my rhetoric here. Marriage is, first and foremost, a form of contract between a man and a woman. Due to unique properties of this contract, marriage also has particular spiritual significance.

    Since porne can be used to describe general promiscuity or cult prostitution, this passage warns Christians that they should not be married to a promiscuous woman or cult prostitute. – Me
    In the past months, I’ve realized porne in this context should refer exclusively to cult prostitutes. Furthermore, in response to recent thoughts on “one flesh,” I’m leaning towards kollao as sex, not marriage.

    Genesis 2:24 is NOT a law or a definition; it is the conclusion to a story that explains why a man cleaves to his wife, and they become one flesh. – Me
    Still right here. “Cleaves” may be equivalently rendered as “has sex with,” or as a more vulgar transitive verb. While the term “marriage” may not be defined explicitly in the Bible, a suitable characterization may be found.

    Ezekiel 16:8 demonstrates that an oath viewed as a necessary component of marriage. It doesn’t establish a requirement, it just demonstrates a preexisting one which elucidates the nature of marriage. – Me
    My point is that “marriage” as such is never explicitly defined in the Bible. Very few words are actually defined in the Bible. This should be a shock to very few, since the good Book is not a dictionary. It’s an anthology of divinely-inspired historical documents written by specific authors, to specific audiences, at specific times, in specific cultures. Thankfully, it contains enough information for careful readers to piece together what was meant.

    Keep in mind the overriding goal of whysoserious? is preserving doctrinal continuity of the lies established by the early church. The unbiblical “requirement” of a commitment ceremony (wedding) neatly avoids the nasty problem (created by churchian lies) of the adultery epidemic caused by claiming that marriage is begun with a commitment ceremony, not sex. – Toad
    You’re wrong. I’m completely against the idea of “ceremony” (e.g. funny hats & stuff) being necessary for marriage. A man and a woman (and perhaps her father) can come to an agreement without ecclesiastical fanfare. That said, even though it’s unnecessary, ceremony can be spiritually informative, and shouldn’t be dismissed out-of-hand.

    That wraps up the summary. Now on to argumentation!

    —————————————————————————————————————————
    Our esteemed host Toad is an intelligent and analytical man, but, as is often the case with intelligent and analytical thinkers, he possesses a tendency to see rules that don’t actually exist. He’s done a wonderful job at creating a sprawling, self-consistent ideology from these rules, which makes his errors difficult to refute. The problem is consistency doesn’t matter if you’re consistently wrong. (ha)

    So, Toad, I’m going to identify the flaws in your 21 Points of Biblical Sexual Morality. Laugh all you want, and get comfortable, ‘cause this’ll be a long one. I’ll follow up with a response tailored to your rebuttal to my OF post, using ideas introduced in this as a framework.

    1. The act of marriage is sexual intercourse and to have sex with an eligible virgin is to marry her (Genesis 2:24).
    This a fantastic specimen of eisegesis. From what I see, this point is most concisely dealt with in your “Twenty-Four Words” post. Your recurring fault is parsing “and shall cleave to his wife” as “and, in cleaving to a woman, make her his wife.” In general, this being-becoming distinction seems to be a struggle for you. In this clause, the woman is not becoming his wife – she is his wife. There is absolutely nothing in this verse to suggest that the woman wasn’t the man’s wife before the cleaving. Furthermore, an “eligible virgin” is nowhere to be seen. Genesis 2:24 is as concerned about them as it is about pineapples – they’re both mentioned exactly the same number of times. If you don’t see that, you can’t read.

    To justify your hallucinations, you turn to Matthew 19, and claim Christ cited this as a definitional authority on marriage. Christ says, “So they are no longer two, but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together let no man separate.” What does this mean? If a someone kills a married man in self defense, does he sin? Marriage ends upon death (Rom. 7), so the killer would be separating man and wife. Is Jesus saying that’s a no-no? Of course not. Being partial to witty replies, he reminds the Pharisees that God intended man and wife to be unified, and that man shouldn’t usurp Him. Effectively, Christ shifts the argument from legalism to teleology. Is he using this as a definition of marriage? NO! He’s recalling an essential quality of marriage to stump some rabbis.

    2. The Law of Marriage states that when an eligible virgin has sex, she is married. The Law of Vows states the father has the authority to forbid any vow or agreement his daughter makes in the day he hears of it.

    You support this by misreading Exodus 22 and drawing parallels to Numbers 30. Again, you flub the being-becoming distinction. We read “he must pay a dowry for her to be his wife.” In your zeal, you drop “to be” as the artifact of some stupid translator. But – wait a minute – how is lə·’iš·šāh used in the Old Testament? Check it out. The near-universal usage pertains to becoming – becoming a woman in Genesis 2:22, and becoming a wife pretty much everywhere else. Maybe the translator wasn’t wrong (in this case) after all! The dowry is paid for the woman to become his wife.

    Numbers 30:5 is only accidental to this discussion. Basically, as you know, fathers had authority over their families, so any oath taken by a daughter was contingent upon paternal consent. Fathers could annul their daughters’ elopements and force reimbursement for dowries. You make a hasty leap to say Exodus 22:17 is a special case of Numbers 30:5. They have similar constructions since they both serve to preserve patriarchal authority over human property.

    Your excuse is that the Deut. 22 passages concerning rape don’t include the paternal “get out of marriage free” card. Suppose the father cannot annul or otherwise refuse the marriage required by the Law. Then what’s to prevent a (freshly ex-)virgin from claiming her lover raped her to get out of her father’s authority? This creates a loophole that defeats a self-evident purpose of Ex. 22. Therefore, it is only reasonable to assume that Deut. 22 has an implicit allowance for paternal oversight. (Interestingly enough, when Ammon raped Tamar, David was furious and sent her to live with her brother Absalom. Doesn’t look like he was forced to give her to her rapist…)

    3. The consent and/or commitment of an eligible virgin to her marriage is not necessary or required for her to be married (Exodus 21:7-10; Exodus 22:16; Deuteronomy 21:10-14; Deuteronomy 22:28-29).
    Mostly true. Patriarchal figures can give women in marriage regardless of their opinions. However, your analysis of Deut. 22 is wrong, as shown above.

    4. The lack of an eligible virgin’s requirement to provide consent to a marriage means she may be raped into marriage (Deuteronomy 22:28-29). Because the eligible non-virgin must consent to marriage, she cannot be raped into marriage against her will.
    The term “eligible non-virgin” is a rarity in the Bible, so I don’t have much to say. Ruth and Tamar (Gen.) definitely qualify, Rahab may or may not. An interesting corner case is the fatherless/isolated virgin. She isn’t under anyone’s authority – not even her own. Weird predicament. The simplest way to resolve this is for consent to be dependant on authority, not virginity.

    5. With the act of penetration, the man gives his consent and makes his commitment to marry the woman he is having sex with, every single time (Genesis 2:24). With every act of sexual intercourse, the man renews his commitment to his wife.
    Again, there is no textual reason to believe Gen. 2:24 pertains to a woman becoming a man’s wife. Sure, with each act of sexual intercourse, they do become OF to a greater degree. But can you really make a commitment to do what you’ve already done? Sounds like an artifact of an improperly constructed ideology.

    6. Reinforcing point #5, there is no prohibition anywhere in Scripture forbidding a man from having sex with an eligible woman, regardless of his marital status.
    Right, but this doesn’t mean they are married. Nothing in the Bible suggests it would. In your desperation to find a bright, shining command, you’ve tortured Gen. 2:24 into something that it most certainly is not.

    7. There is no requirement anywhere in Scripture for a betrothal period, a celebration or public ceremony of any kind, nor does marriage require the permission of any third party such as the church or state, because the authority to marry was granted to the man in the Law of Marriage (Genesis 2:24). If the woman is in her youth and living in her father’s house, he has authority to forbid the marriage if he chooses to.
    Yep, even if she’s raped and the law compels a marriage.

    8. The only way a man and woman can have “premarital sex” is if they are engaged to be married and have sex during the engagement period. While there is no requirement in Scripture for an engagement period, if they take such a vow it must be kept.
    No and yes. As was shown before, there is no justification for the “virginal sex => marriage” notion.

    17. While male homosexuality was an offense for men and bestiality was an offense for both men and women, homosexual contact between women was not prohibited except for cases of incest within a polygynous marriaage. The incest statutes contain two prohibitions on a man marrying sisters, or marrying a mother-daughter or grandmother-granddaughter. Those regulations presume sexual contact between wives in a polygynous marriage (Leviticus 18:17-18).
    I’d argue that the whole marrying sisters thing is phrased to prevent rivalry between sisters, or at least uncovering their nakedness together. Notice how Leah and Rachel didn’t share the same quarters as Jacob. No big deal though.

    19. The only prohibition against using the services of a prostitute is in 1st Corinthians 6:15-16, which only forbids Christian men from using prostitutes.
    If you want to understand what someone is saying, it helps to know why they’re saying it. Paul is telling the church that Christian freedom is not a license for certain behaviors. There is an obvious correlation between 1 Cor. 6:12 and 1 Cor. 10:23. The former discusses prostitutes and defiling oneself, the latter meat sacrificed to idols and defiling others’ consciences. Essentially, 1 Cor. 6 warns Christians against sexual immorality since it causes the members of Christ to be one with a prostitute.

    This raises a few important questions:
    > If a Christian woman were to be a prostitute, as you say is permissible, are not Christ’s members still those of a prostitute? She is one with Christ, is she not?
    > If a man married to a prostitute converts to Christianity, and she desires to stay with him, can he have sex with her? (Presumably, he ought to as is his husbandly duty.)

    The second point implies there must be more going on here. The degradation of Christ only occurs when having sex with prostitute in the act of prostitution, if Paul’s words are to be universally true. The only condemned type of prostitution is cult prostitution, which, combined with the reputation of Corinth, make it likely the author is speaking of this particular type.

    9-16, 18, 20-21
    Fine by me. Haven’t looked much into divorce though, but you seem about right.

    —————————————————————————————————————————
    On to the response:
    “This characterization is not correct.”
    I misinterpreted you to say that the OF bond was the marriage bond. My error.
    Legitimate? You imply that a third party other than God decides what legitimate or illegitimate is.
    No- I just wanted to find a shorter way of saying “any non-adulterous/immoral sex, and any proper subset thereof, including that which you think leads to marriage.”

    You are still claiming that first is a commitment ceremony, then sex, which creates one flesh and that is what makes one married…. This is an argument completely unsupported by Scripture.
    In which case our ideas have something in common. No matter how hard you squint, you cannot make Genesis 2:24 read as anything other than what it is. It says NOTHING of the initialization of a marriage. It merely says that a man leaves his parents, has sex with his wife, and the happy couple becomes one flesh. See any “and the virgin becomes his wife” in there? No? That’s because she is already his wife. In the New Testament, Jesus reminds the Pharisees that God designed man and wife to be unified, and that they shouldn’t try to go against God’s plan by divorcing them.

    As pointed out above, which one did Christ quote as the authority for marriage?
    He went to the one that dealt with unity of man and wife, and God’s intention. He wouldn’t discuss marital vows with people who already knew about them, and were asking for an excuse to break them.

    It is not for “OUR” purposes, but rather for your own and you intentionally misstate it. When men have sex with an eligible virgin, the virgin becomes his wife and they become one flesh. You are still attempting to make the back-handed claim that a ceremony is necessary to make the woman a “wife” before the sex occurs.
    “Ceremony” isn’t the right word. “Contract” is much closer, and, yes, sex may be a part of that contract. We’ll get to this later.

    You say that a photo gives information about the building, but when the blueprint is available one uses the blueprint as the primary source for how the building was constructed and looks at the photo for help in visualizing the finished product.
    And if there is no blueprint, we look at the photo. Honestly, Gen. 2:24 makes a bad blueprint. Does it contain information on the status of the woman? No. Does it outline the duties of marriage? No. Does it even mention marriage? No, but it does mention married people and sex. I guess you think that’s close enough. I hope you aren’t a civil engineer. You might try to build a bridge from IKEA furniture instructions.

    With the sex, they are married. If this were in keeping with your narrative you would need to see God swearing an oath first, which would establish that they were husband and wife, but we don’t see that.
    No, you misunderstand, this fits my narrative to the letter. Man meets girl. Man has sex with girl and makes an oath to her. Man is married to girl. The sex/vow order doesn’t matter. You couldn’t get a more perfect image of what I’m talking about.

    From your previous comments you admit that Ezekiel 16:8 does not have the oath as a requirement. Instead, you claim it illustrates a preexisting requirement that you cannot cite based on an amorphous “knowledge” of ancient near-East practices.
    Just like you can’t cite one passage that contains all your marital theories, so too must I work from bits and pieces to reconstruct biblical marriage. When I refer to that “knowledge,” I’m speaking to the wealth of cultural data in the Scripture alongside other relevant historical information we must sift through in order to understand the simplest words.

    >Is a marriage automatically a covenant?
    By which I mean a type of contract, sure.
    >If it’s a covenant, does that mean God is a party to the marriage, or is this a lesser covenant between two people?
    Let’s go with lesser. God is involved insofar as we are one with his Son.
    >How can there be a covenant between two people when one of them does not want to be married to the other?
    Life’s not fair or “consensual.” Do you think Isaac had a choice to be circumcised? Back in ye olden times, there were authorities higher than feelings. Compulsion to marry was either at the behest of the state with consent of the father, the behest of the father himself, or as a part of property fixation after war. Yes it offends our modern sensibilities on coercion/fraud/extortion/equality/etc, but modern sensibilities don’t matter here.
    >If the covenant includes God as one of the parties to the marriage, is such a covenant marriage formed with every marriage, including a marriage to widows and legitimately divorced women, or is it only formed when the blood of the virgin is shed?
    No blood required, but blood is suggestive of the God/Israel arrangement. I’m not opposed to the idea.
    > Is God’s involvement bifurcated, where God is a party to the virgin marriage covenant, but not a party to the “lesser” covenant marriage in which the woman was not a virgin?
    I honestly don’t care. The point is that, in isolation, a physical act is not sufficient to initialize marriage. Intent matters, especially communicated intent. People might, on occasion, be compelled to act with certain intent due to legal concerns. It is absurd to suppose someone could get married by accident. Your attempts to concoct justifications for this nonsense would be amusing if they weren’t so painful to read. Next you’ll be telling me that I’ve signed some sort of “invisible contract” by virtue of living in civilized society.

    I find that because Christ cited Genesis 2:24 as the authority on marriage, whatever authority Ezekiel 16:8 might have is decidedly inferior and the fact that nowhere else in Scripture is Ezekiel 16 cited as having anything to do with marriage means it has no authority.
    Check your articles. Christ cited Genesis 2:24 as an authority on marriage. I didn’t catch him saying it was the only authority.

    What do these covenants have in common, these agreements to which God is a party? The shedding of blood. And… look at that. Virgins come with a hymen as standard equipment, designed to bleed after being torn in the first instance of sexual intercourse.
    That’s a bad argument, and you know it. The mere shedding of blood is not sufficient to form a covenant. Otherwise I might be in a compromising relationship with some roadkill.

    It wasn’t from her birth so many years ago, it was from her ruptured hymen, the blood that initiated the covenant which God sealed with his oath.
    WHAT? He has sex with a woman and seals the covenant with an oath? You’re beginning to sound like me. Visit a doctor, soon. I’m worried for you.

    If marriage was bifurcated into two distinct creations (as you claim) then getting caught raping an eligible virgin would not make her married because neither the man or woman voiced commitment.
    Which is why Deut. 22:28 says she “shall be” married, not “she is.” As I wrote before, this passage allows a loophole in Exo. 22 unless paternal oversight still applies. The marriage is induced by the state.

    If you can concede…
    NEVER! Haha. The idea that, throughout all the world, throughout all of time, a man was expected to know that by taking a girl’s virginity he actually married her is preposterous. Next you’ll be telling me that, were I to get my ears pierced, I’d be the lifelong slave to whoever did that terrible deed. It’s silly.

    Further, if marriage was bifurcated as you say, then it would be possible to “marry” someone you’d never met simply by making a commitment to them.
    What part of vow + SEX = marriage do you not understand?

    In Conclusion

    Jesus quoted Genesis 2:24 as an authority on marriage, not “the” authority on marriage. The Apostle Paul quoted Genesis 2:24 as an authority on marriage, not “the” authority on marriage. No-one cites Ezekiel 16:8 for anything, except those who want an anecdotal picture of what marriage may have looked like in some cases.

    The word kollao, as used in 1st Corinthians 6:16 means sex because the word porne means prostitute. Which means that the word dabaq means sex in Genesis 2:24, which means a man and a wife have sex and become one flesh. [Seriously, “eligible virgin” doesn’t even appear anywhere near Genesis 2. Maybe I should check out the New Artisanal Toad Version.] Nothing more, nothing less.

    We don’t know what a covenant marriage is or who it applies to or anything else, we can only make educated guesses. But at least we know it exists, which can’t be said for the illusive “eligible virgin” in Genesis 2:24.

    • A picture says a thousand words. This is what Genesis 2:24 actually says:

      Then we have the more “traditional” marriage outlook, which is also in keeping with what the Bible says.

      You are claiming that sex alone is insufficient to initiate a marriage. You base this claim on Ezekiel 16:8, and you likewise claim

      My point is that “marriage” as such is never explicitly defined in the Bible. Very few words are actually defined in the Bible.

      This is ridiculous given that Jesus cited Genesis 2:24, not Ezekiel 16:8. The subject was divorce, the text under discussion was Deuteronomy 24:1 (which I quoted) and Jesus responded with Genesis 2:24. That, sir, whether you like it or not, is the defining grant of authority for marriage. On one hand you claim you’re opposed to ceremonies and don’t see the need, on the other hand you claim sex alone is insufficient. So, on the timeline below, please explain what (other than the act of sexual intercourse) is required for all people of all time to create a marriage.

      Keep in mind that adultery is a crime for all time and we know that adulterers will not enter the kingdom of heaven. In order to have the crime of adultery you must have a married woman, so whether a woman is married or not becomes critical to the commission of the crime of adultery.

      What is required for all people for all time to establish a marriage, with a definite point at which the two are definitely married? That is the question that must be answered. Please support your answer with Scripture.

    • whysoserious? says:

      Screw sleep. Here’s a quick and dirty response.
      You’ve misrepresented Genesis 2:24 in your picture. Let me help.
      1) Genesis 2:24 is a description of a phenomenon. Therefore, it doesn’t have “requirements.” Jesus and Paul referenced this passage since it elucidates some aspects of marriage. They never say Genesis 2:24 describes the entirety of marriage, or that it’s the “Law of Marriage” (TM); they do use it to teach others that God designed marriage as an institute of unity between man and wife. You, on the other hand, somehow take this to mean it is a definition of marriage – a clear error in reading comprehension if ever I saw one.
      2) The parenthetical note below “SEX” should read “(with his wife),” since Genesis 2:24 explicitly lists the man’s wife, not some random “eligible virgin.” You try to dodge this in your next graphic with a most disingenuous redefinition of words, but that’s later.
      3) It’s reassuring you remembered that the man and his wife “become one flesh.” With your record, I’d expect you’d substitute “become husband and wife,” or whatever’s convenient for your ideology. Keep in mind that flesh refers to physical body, nothing more. When God makes two into one flesh, it’s a physical event. He’s not melding souls or pronouncing some metaphysical/spiritual union – that’s outside the usage of the word “flesh.” In fact, I dare say what I’m describing is one of those “Easter Rabbit” myths you’re still falling for. Check me if I’m wrong.

      Let’s take a look at the “traditional” marriage outlook.
      1) A betrothal is different from legal marriage. Betrothals exist to ensure a woman isn’t pregnant with someone else’s kid before the wedding day. Keep a careful eye on the girl for a few months, and she’ll show if she’s stepped out of line. Since a betrothal contract can be happily terminated (or else what’s the damn point?) it is very different from marriage. To say a betrothed woman is a man’s (unmarried) wife is plain stupid. Betrothal is the conditional agreement to marry. The actual consent to marry is something else.
      2) What happens if a man has sex before leaving his parent’s house? Does it “not count” toward marriage, since he did things out of order? Just asking.

      [On Ezekiel, Genesis, and Matthew]
      “That, sir, whether you like it or not, is the defining grant of authority for marriage.”
      No one’s arguing Genesis 2:24 lacks authority on marriage. The question is whether or not it is the exhaustive authority on marriage. Hint: It’s not. Otherwise, the passages in Exodus, Leviticus, and Deuteronomy regarding marriage would be redundant and unnecessary. Christ said that ‘man should not live on bread alone’ – is Deut. 8:3 the one and only divine authority on godly eating habits?

      “…whether a woman is married or not becomes critical to the commission of the crime of adultery.”
      This is an enormous hole in your model of marriage. There is no way for a man to tell whether he is committing “mortal sin.” In which case, celibacy is the only morally safe choice for men. If that were so, I do believe Paul would have made a note about it in one of his letters.

      “What is required for all people for all time to establish a marriage, with a definite point at which the two are definitely married?”
      This requires some background. If you’re familiar with this type of anthropology, you’ll pick up the gist quickly enough.
      Man is a social animal, one which does not exist in isolation. So long as there is man, he shall arrange himself with companions around some cult and culture. The biomechanical realities of sexual dimorphism induces sex-based roles – male as provider/protector, female as reproductive resource. A necessary condition of such an arrangement is the establishment of legitimacy of offspring – who’s whose Daddy? The only sustainable solution to this is an institution that restricts a woman’s sexual availability to one man. This is marriage. The permanence of marriage serves to protect individuals with falling SMV and provide children with a stable home environment. Interruptions of this practice always result in dysgenic/generally bad effects – as we can see today, or with prima nocta, or whatever. But what of the tribes who don’t have this arrangement? Answer: Read Romans. They should know better. Marriage is a natural human relation (like friendship), and adultery is an unnatural, immoral (but all too common) violation of that relationship.
      The married are married when they are married, just like friends are friends when they are friends, or men are men when they are men. It’s a natural fact. Since this is rather tautological, we can analyze marriage into a lifetime sexual commitment. If there is no commitment, there is no marriage; if there is no sex, there is no marriage – for sex is the point of marriage.
      “But this isn’t Scripture,” you wail. No, it is. This is a clear and immediate result from the Pauline conception of man, and, if you look a little deeper, the idea that Love is the fulfillment of the Law. It’s beautiful, really, if you can see it.

  2. “If marriage was bifurcated into two distinct creations (as you claim) then getting caught raping an eligible virgin would not make her married because neither the man or woman voiced commitment.

    Which is why Deut. 22:28 says she “shall be” married, not “she is.” As I wrote before, this passage allows a loophole in Exo. 22 unless paternal oversight still applies. The marriage is induced by the state.

    Despite all the voluminous arguments, the judgment of Deuteronomy 22:28-29 is the linchpin of the issue. Sex really does make them married and whysoserious? has finally admitted this.

    “The marriage is induced enforced by the state.”

    The marriage (existing, current marriage) is enforced by the state. The marriage was induced (inflicted, if you will) with the act of the man jamming his penis in her vagina. The state cannot induce the marriage, it enforces the marriage that already exists. By enforcing the marriage the point is made that nothing else must be done because they are married. As whysoserious? finally admits, the judgment of Deuteronomy 22:28-29 has the marriage being enforced because the sex was all it took to make them married. No vows (any vow made through coercion is fraudulent) are or will be necessary, the sex was all it took.

    Having already heard from whysoserious? the opinion that marriage is a long-term form of prostitution, we eagerly await his judgment that marriage is also a specific form of long-term punishment designed to inflict pain on men.

    On to his febrile rantings about lə·’iš·šāh

    You support this by misreading Exodus 22 and drawing parallels to Numbers 30. Again, you flub the being-becoming distinction. We read “he must pay a dowry for her to be his wife.” In your zeal, you drop “to be” as the artifact of some stupid translator. But – wait a minute – how is lə·’iš·šāh used in the Old Testament? Check it out. The near-universal usage pertains to becoming – becoming a woman in Genesis 2:22, and becoming a wife pretty much everywhere else. Maybe the translator wasn’t wrong (in this case) after all! The dowry is paid for the woman to become his wife.

    The term “lə·’iš·šāh” is a noun. How is it used in the Hebrew? As a noun. Your claim of a “near universal usage” as a verb that communicates the idea of “becoming” is pure fantasy because nouns do not “become”, they are. Now, if you want to make a technical argument about the lambedh prefix, keep in mind that it also indicates possession rather than the simple dative “to” or “for” inflection. Which is why, of the 53 instances of the use of lə·’iš·šāh, they are preceded by a verb when there is an action needed to the noun.

    One expects that a commenter who can so blithely toss around comments that indicate the possible vulgarity of some transitive verbs would understand the distinction between nouns and verbs. One would also expect them to understand that a verb can add action to a noun, but in the absence of a verb the noun simply exists as a person, place or a thing. And in the case of the specific noun in question (lə·’iš·šāh), the lambedh prefix is reflexive between the possessive and dative inflection based in large part on whether the noun is preceded by a verb. In the case of Exodus 22:16, there is no verb and the lambedh prefix of lə·’iš·šāh is possessive in inflection, not dative. Which means the word refers to “his wife” and not “becoming his wife”.

    For the record, I don’t like having to descend into the depths of grammar like this because most don’t have the background to understand it. It’s easier to stick to the fact that there is no verb to translate as “to be” in the original text and adding “to be” dramatically changes the meaning of the text that’s actually there, rather than clarifying the meaning inherent in the original text.

    • whysoserious? says:

      “…whysoserious? has finally admitted this. ‘The marriage is induced enforced by the state.’”
      Read what I write not what you think. “Induced” signifies the emergence of the marriage. Upon further reflection, I should say the marriage is induced by society, and enforced by the state, at least insofar as the state differs from society. (Once upon a time they weren’t as divorced from one another as they are today.) I never admitted marriage was preexisting. Keep dreaming.

      I do still maintain that marriage is very much like prostitution, as they are both species of mutually beneficial intersexual social agreements of a particularly intimate nature. Not sure why you think I’d say it’s a punishment.

      The Deut. 22 passage has the state/society establish a marriage between the man and woman. As I showed earlier, this is contingent on the father’s approval of the union. Marriage is a social phenomenon.

      As far as the noun/verb matter goes: if I understand you correctly, you’re saying the dative and possessive forms of the noun in question share the same phonological marker, and, since there is no adjacent verb, we may infer that it is inflected for the possessive (=his wife). That’s great, but what about ignoring the preposition(?) lōw? Sadly, I do not know enough of the grammar and syntax to fully understand this verse. The Septuagint (used by the Eastern Orthodox churches and quoted in the NT) is a little more clearly in my favor, but it’s still Greek to me. [Your point about ‘to be’ not being in the passage is invalid, as it presupposes the alignment of ancient Hebrew and modern English grammar and syntax.]

      Stepping out of the weeds, it is worthwhile to observe that, in any event, the father may refuse to give his daughter to the young man. This alone is sufficient to show that the woman is not married, as she is still under her father’s authority. If she were married, and her father annulled the marriage (as you say) – then we would expect to see the same verbage (“and on the day he hears…”) we see in Numbers 30. But we don’t. Time isn’t a restricting factor – she never even is said to have made an oath, just been “seduced”- so Num. 30 has no apparent relation to Ex. 22. Even if she ran away with the guy, so that she was no longer bodily in her father’s house, her father still has to give her to him, implying she was always in her father’s possession. Your Num. 30 interpretation is shoehorned in here without justification. [It looks like you speak to that next post. Will continue there.]

  3. The Rejoinder To Point One

    1. The act of marriage is sexual intercourse and to have sex with an eligible virgin is to marry her (Genesis 2:24).

    This a fantastic specimen of eisegesis. From what I see, this point is most concisely dealt with in your “Twenty-Four Words” post. Your recurring fault is parsing “and shall cleave to his wife” as “and, in cleaving to a woman, make her his wife.” In general, this being-becoming distinction seems to be a struggle for you. In this clause, the woman is not becoming his wife – she is his wife. There is absolutely nothing in this verse to suggest that the woman wasn’t the man’s wife before the cleaving. Furthermore, an “eligible virgin” is nowhere to be seen. Genesis 2:24 is as concerned about them as it is about pineapples – they’re both mentioned exactly the same number of times. If you don’t see that, you can’t read.

    He has sex with the virgin, she is his wife. She becomes his wife with the act of penetration.

    “There is absolutely nothing in this verse to suggest that the woman wasn’t the man’s wife before the cleaving.

    This is what we call grasping at straws and you make the point, because by the same token, there is nothing in the text to suggest the woman was his wife before the cleaving. Which means all we are left with is what is in the text, “dabaq”. It was the act of cleaving that made her his wife. Thank you for helping us narrow this down so that (once again) we can agree that it was the act of sex that made her his wife.

    “Furthermore, an “eligible virgin” is nowhere to be seen.

    It really is amazing that you have this issue where at some points you can’t see the forest for the trees, then in another area you can’t see the trees for the forest, but the way it works depends on how well it supports your attack on my argument.

    The idea of an eligible virgin implies that a woman can be an ineligible virgin, which was not the case with Genesis 2:24. Eve was a virgin and eligible to marry Adam and the text does not need to explain that explicitly. That was not the case later and in Exodus 22:16-17, in both cases the woman was identified as a “virgin not betrothed”. In Deuteronomy 22:23, the woman is specifically identified as a virgin who is betrothed. In Deuteronomy 22:28-29, we again have a woman identified as a “virgin not betrothed”.

    A fascinating focus on the betrothal status of the virgin.

    We notice that in the incest statutes there are a number of relationships in which the woman could be a virgin, but the relationship is forbidden, (an aunt, sister, daughter or granddaughter). The relationship is forbidden so having sex with said woman will not create a marriage. Therefore, that virgin is ineligible but that isn’t worth mentioning because it’s forbidden.

    Numbers 30:2-5 indicates the father can forbid his daughter to a man by forbidding her marriage to him, thus she is not eligible to marry him and if he has sex with her it will not create a marriage. The act of betrothing a woman creates a situation in which the father (or brother) of the woman is forbidding every other man from marrying her except for her betrothed. Thus, the judgments given reflected the fact that once the vows of betrothal were made, the virgin in question could not get out of it by having sex voluntarily or involuntarily.

    In the case of the virgin betrothed who voluntarily has sex or is raped after becoming betrothed, we have Deuteronomy 22:23-27 which explains the judgment and penalties.

    If the virgin were not subject to betrothal vows and she agreed to sex (marriage), her father could forbid that agreement in the day he heard of it and in doing so annul the marriage that resulted. However, if she was raped (and there were witnesses to that fact) then because she made no agreement to have sex (be married) that her father could forbid, she was married to the man who had sex with her.

    The only three passages that speak to the formation of marriage for free women are Genesis 2:24, Exodus 22:16-17 and Deuteronomy 22:28-29 and two of them are specific to mention the virgin not betrothed. Since it is far easier and understandable to say “eligible virgin” than it is to say “a virgin who is not betrothed and not a close relative, with whom it is forbidden to have a sexual relationship”; I choose to use the term “eligible virgin”.

    In fact, it’s easier to say “virgin” but one gets tired of anklebiters who then want to bring up the cases of incest or the betrothed virgin. Better to simply say “eligible virgin” than to say “virgin” and leave her particular status in question.

    “To justify your hallucinations, you turn to Matthew 19, and claim Christ cited this as a definitional authority on marriage. Christ says, “So they are no longer two, but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together let no man separate.” “

    That right there is what we call deliberate intellectual dishonesty.

    You deliberately ignore that He quoted Genesis 2:24, and the part you quoted in rebuttal was His response to the Pharisees on the issue of divorce, AFTER quoting Genesis 2:24 as the authority on marriage. Yes, as a matter of fact, Jesus did cite and quote Genesis 2:24 as the definitional authority on marriage, which was (in His words) “from the beginning…”

    • whysoserious? says:

      “there is nothing in the text to suggest the woman was his wife before the cleaving.”
      This may just be in English, but, typically, when you act on an X to make it a Y, you don’t say you act on Y. In this case, the man cleaves to his wife. Not his “eligible virgin,” his wife. Which makes me think that the cleaving happens after she became his wife. Could just be an English language thing, though. Even if it were “man cleaves to the woman who becomes his wife” – this is not to say that the cleaving itself makes her his wife. We’re told he leaves his parents, has sex with a woman who at some point was/is/will be his wife, and they become one flesh. We’re not told that the cleaving makes her his wife – that’s your invention.

      The idea of an eligible virgin implies that a woman can be an ineligible virgin, which was not the case with Genesis 2:24. Eve was a virgin and eligible to marry Adam and the text does not need to explain that explicitly.
      So, all of a sudden Genesis 2:24 is context dependent. I thought I heard someone saying it was the be-all-end-all divine command/definition of marriage, everything we’d ever need to know and all of that. Hmm. Must have been somewhere else. As for Exodus and Deuteronomy 22, you’re right that their context requires discussion of virginal eligibility. Forcing those words onto Gen. 2:24 is unwarranted. Gen 2:24 is a discussion of why men leave their parents, have sex, and are united as one flesh with their wives. If you’re interested in the God-intended relationship between man and wife, it’s a great resource. But its usefulness to Jesus and others does not imply it contains guidelines on the initialization of marriage. Your expectation that it would is, frankly, bizarre.

      Big quote, b/c important:
      That right there is what we call deliberate intellectual dishonesty.
      You deliberately ignore that He quoted Genesis 2:24, and the part you quoted in rebuttal was His response to the Pharisees on the issue of divorce, AFTER quoting Genesis 2:24 as the authority on marriage. Yes, as a matter of fact, Jesus did cite and quote Genesis 2:24 as the definitional authority on marriage, which was (in His words) “from the beginning…”

      Dude, I was just omitting the restatement of Gen. 2:24 for brevity. No need to get fussy. A definitional authority is one which states what something is. Genesis 2:24 never says what marriage is. It describes phenomena related to marriage, but it doesn’t say, “This is what marriage is: a man marries a woman if and only if he does x,y,z.” It says, “men have always done x,y,z with their wives/women, with result w.” Christ then makes a statement about how result w relates to divorce, and overrules whatever Moses said. See? No definition -> not a definitional authority. It is a very important authority but that doesn’t make it a definitional one.

      I would greatly appreciate answers to these questions:
      In your mind, what is marriage? What about sex with an eligible virgin “causes” marriage? How is the ability to consent metaphysically related to virginity?

      Well… and here I said I wasn’t going to respond until next week. I’ll regret this tomorrow, to be sure.

  4. whysoserious? says:

    I’m quite busy this week; expect a response sometime after next Monday.

    • Not a problem, I’ll continue to go point by point in response to your arguments. I am curious though. Do you have minions to help you?

      • whysoserious? says:

        No, but after learning you talk to your “associates” about me, I might decide to invest. Do you know of any good minion contracting services?

        • Alas, I currently have no minions in this area. In your case my “associates” are my students.

          Most of the men who would be considered my associates (peers) are teachers/instructors of one flavor or another, generally in the area of martial arts and military training. For the most part they view my study of Biblical sexual morality in the same way a typical grunt views a civilian’s obsession with fly fishing. It’s interesting for the first 30 seconds, but if you wanted fish, why not just use a grenade?

          As a rule one only gets minions in military formations or in university settings. The trick is to be in a position in which you hold their future in the palm of your hand with the ability to make their life living hell or reward them greatly depending on their performance. For this reason interns in a corporate setting typically make very poor minions.

          Prostitutes, OTOH, make wonderful minions if one knows a friendly madam or pimp who can help motivate them. Motivation typically involves money so one should reserve the use of such minions for special occasions involving nudity and inflicting extreme embarrassment upon your intended victim.

          If you were the area psychopath that trained young idiots in preparation for winning a place in the special forces, you’d find those young men to be ideal minions. Make whatever idiocy you desired to accomplish a part of their training, with an emphasis on the 11th Commandment: thou shall not get caught. That, of course, requires you have the pre-existing condition of being a psychopath who has previously gone through Ranger School, the Q-course or BUDS and gained a thorough understanding of applied sadism.

          Intellectual minions are very difficult to come by and time and time again I’ve witnessed professors assuming their graduate students were in possession of intelligence, common sense and the ability to use initiative. A cute, experienced, intelligent and teachable whore is worth a dozen TA’s or RA’s any day of the week. They take to applied hegelian dialectic like a duck to water.

          The problem with good minions is they must be properly trained and very few have the requisite combination of narcissism, sociopathy and Machiavellianism necessary to train minions correctly. Such individuals are generally only found in military units or in religious groups like the Jesuits and certain radical Islamic sects.

          An often overlooked source of minions is the large pool of older women who are completely ignored by most of society, particularly the ones who were used to receiving a lot of male attention when they were young. While somewhat low-energy, they can be very effective because they are all but invisible due to their lack of sexual appeal.

          Currently I’m doing feasibility studies on whether multiple wives might be capable of functioning as suitable minions in addition to their other duties.

      • whysoserious? says:

        Good to know. I’ll need to consider whether or not the soulcrushing/self-harm of psychopathy outweighs the utility and Machiavellian delight of minions.

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