Friday, November 06, 2009

Adultery In the Bible

In Deuteronomy chapter 22 the Bible spells out very clear punishments for adulterers.

There is a problem with that.

Deuteronomy 17:6

You need at least two direct eye witnesses to an event before you can put someone to death.

Typically this means the couple who committed adultery had to do it in front of witnesses before they can be stoned to death.

Some argue that people can confess or witness their own crimes.

This is actually arguable in the Hebrew. Essentially the language states that the witness and the accused are different individuals.

So, unless you and someone else actually catch two people committing adultery and you are both willing to testify against them in front of the congregation there can be no Godly punishment.

There is no other punishment for "perceived" adultery. I have not found a passage that allows punishment of a woman for having a child out of wed lock. The child cannot enter into the Temple in Jerusalem, but, I can't find any other punishment.

There are a lot of "suggestive" ideas in the Bible and a lot of commands.

The most important commands in my opinion are:

You are forgiven as you forgive.

So if you don't forgive people, if you demand they be punished for what you believe they have done wrong then you must be punished for what others believe you have done wrong even if you do not believe you have done anything wrong.

Love others as you love yourself.

Not better than yourself. Not worse than yourself. Treat others the way you treat yourself. Feed them as you feed yourself. Clothe them as you clothe yourself. Love them as you love yourself.

Love the Lord your God with all your heart

Don't add your own ideas to the Lord God's commands because when you do your prove that you love yourself more than God.


authorphilipkledzik said...

Thank you for the reminder of the two greatest commandments. Love the Lord your God with all your heart soul mind and strength and like it Love your neighbor as yourself.
Along with regular Bible stories, we've been teaching those to our three children and how those are shown (loving God and others).
Thank you for taking the job of reminding me of them.
Author Philip Kledzik
"Painted Rooms"
"An Issue of the Heart"

John D. Ayer said...

Thanks Philip!

It is amazing to me how sinful people (like us) can twist the commandments of a loving God into something that gives sinners the right to hurt others.