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Discussion Forum : Scriptures and Doctrine : Women as Booty of War - OT

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lovedove88
Member



Joined: 2007/4/23
Posts: 7
Harlem

 Re: Women as Booty of War - OT

I have also ran into a similar problem with the OT text Hosea while in seminary. While in my small OT class discussion groups which was almost entirely female an many of the women had an issue with some of tha language used to show how Isreal was going to be punished for being unfaithful to God. Since Isreal was being reimaged as Hosea's unfaithful wife the language is hurtful to many women because so many women have been abused. How do we use and recouncile these text some of my classmates refuse to use them in ministry but I don't want to totally reject any of God's word. Here is some of the text that were problematic for the women:

"Therefore I will take away my grain when it ripens, and my new wine when it is ready.
I will take back my wool and my linen,
intended to cover her nakedness. So now I will expose her lewdness before the eyes of her lovers;
no one will take her out of my hands. I will stop all her celebrations: her yearly festivals, her New Moons, her Sabbath days—all her appointed feasts.I will ruin her vines and her fig trees,which she said were her pay from her lovers;I will make them a thicket,and wild animals will devour them. I will punish her for the days she burned incense to the Baals; she decked herself with rings and jewelry,and went after her lovers,but me she forgot,"declares the LORD."Therefore I am now going to allure her;
I will lead her into the desert and speak tenderly to her.There I will give her back her vineyards,and will make the Valley of Achor [a] a door of hope.There she will sing [b] as in the days of her youth,as in the day she came up out of Egypt.


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Onleilove

 2007/5/8 0:33Profile
RobertW
Member



Joined: 2004/2/12
Posts: 4636
Independence, Missouri

 Re:

God has used marriage as a picture of our relationship to Him. This is a committed relationship the bonds and vows of which are not to be broken. To break the marriage vow in the OT was the death penalty (Deut 22). An evil and adulterous generation does not understand this. They can commit adultery and wipe their mouth and say they have done no wickedness (Proverbs 30:20). But in the Old Testament it was not so. Both fornication and adultery could get you stoned. Why? Because you are taking the love that belongs to the one and giving it to another. Once the bond exists the relationship between the man and wife is utterly exclusive. Tyndale called adultery 'breaking wedlock'. And this is the picture we have in Hosea 2. To break wedlock or commit fornication is to commit whoredom and those who participate are called whores and whoremongers. This is strong language in any generation. Consider this passage from the New Testament:

Marriage is honourable in all, and the bed undefiled: but whoremongers and adulterers God will judge. (Hebrews 13)

Now take this to the level of our relationship with God. When one takes the love that belongs to God and gives it to another this is Idolatry. It is apostacy for a believer that is supposed to be committed exclusively to God. Hebrews 6 offers severe warnings of the most dreadful sort against such behavior. The use of terms such as whoring and whoremonger, etc. are intended to level upon the perpetrators the enormity of their crimes. A thief is a thief. A killer is a killer. A liar is a liar. A whoremonger is a whoremonger. Ravenhill once said that if we started using Biblical terms to describe these behaviors folk might think twice.

What do prople prefer? She had an affair? Use a euphamism to knock the edge off the crime? Suddenly a liar is a fibber with a lofty imagination? Nay verily! Hosea and other like passages are powerful pictures of God's position on man's behavior. It is colorful and loud. It is marvelous expression of how He feels about things. When we read Hosea- we get the message.




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Robert Wurtz II

 2007/5/8 8:48Profile
lovedove88
Member



Joined: 2007/4/23
Posts: 7
Harlem

 Re: Hosea

I understand and agree with alot of what you are saying but my classmates and I are concerned for women who have been raped or abused and who when reading this passage think God condones rap or abuse of women. No one was talking about adultry which still would not justify a woman being raped or abused but just how imagery like this may make some abused women think God condones their abuse or how some sick men could use this passage to justify rape or abuse of women.

I understand what the metaphor in Hosea means in reference to our relationship with God but I also have never been raped or abused for a woman who has experienced these things it may be hard for them to get what the passage is saying about their personal relationship with God because they are reminded of the pain of their abuse.


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Onleilove

 2007/5/8 13:20Profile
PassingThru
Member



Joined: 2005/5/7
Posts: 175


 Re:

Quote:
Part of the explanation of many of these laws is God restraining men rather than remaking them.



God's heart for marriage is also shown in the Old Testament :-

[color=000099]
Mal 2:14 Yet ye say, Wherefore? Because the LORD hath been witness between thee and the wife of thy youth, against whom thou hast dealt treacherously: yet is she thy companion, and the wife of thy covenant.
Mal 2:15 And did not he make one? Yet had he the residue of the spirit. And wherefore one? That he might seek a godly seed. Therefore take heed to your spirit, and let none deal treacherously against the wife of his youth.
Mal 2:16 [b]For the LORD, the God of Israel, saith that he hateth putting away[/b]: for one covereth violence with his garment, saith the LORD of hosts: therefore take heed to your spirit, that ye deal not treacherously.
[/color]

The passage also re-enforces the "two shall become one" principle. In the cases where Israelites were instructed to put away their foreign wives, it may be that the spiritual condition of the foreign wives in question meant having 'oneness' made it impossible to have 'oneness' with God :-

[color=000099]
1Co 6:15 Know ye not that your bodies are the members of Christ? shall I then take the members of Christ, and make them the members of a harlot? God forbid.
1Co 6:16 What? know ye not that he which is joined to a harlot is one body? for two, saith he, shall be one flesh.
[/color]

It's interesting that the genealogy in Matthew Ch.1 only notes the mothers when the marriage had an 'abnormal' original : Thamar, Rachab, Ruth and Bathsheba.

PassingThru

 2007/5/8 14:28Profile
PassingThru
Member



Joined: 2005/5/7
Posts: 175


 Re:

Quote:
...but just how imagery like this may make some abused women think God condones their abuse or how some sick men could use this passage to justify rape or abuse of women.



It may be wise to avoid it if dealing with people that aren't going to understand it, however I would be careful with the idea of avoiding passages of scripture on a permanent basis:

[color=000099]
2Ti 3:16 [b]All[/b] Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:
2Ti 3:17 That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.
[/color]

Surely any magazine rack in petrol stations and supermarkets or nearly any television program is going to provoke more pain to someone that has suffered abuse than this vivid imagery for the severeness of sin, especially since they are produced in a pro-abuse spirit ?

PassingThru

 2007/5/8 14:51Profile
RobertW
Member



Joined: 2004/2/12
Posts: 4636
Independence, Missouri

 Re:

Quote:
I understand and agree with alot of what you are saying but my classmates and I are concerned for women who have been raped or abused and who when reading this passage think God condones rap or abuse of women. No one was talking about adultry which still would not justify a woman being raped or abused but just how imagery like this may make some abused women think God condones their abuse or how some sick men could use this passage to justify rape or abuse of women.



I think it would be a stretch to use the passages in this way. The reality is that these women should be outraged at things that distort men's perception of women such as pornography and the secular media. If I were in such a class I would certainly point that out. The are also laws in the Old Testament that deal with rape and that carried the death penalty also. So I think the important thing is to emphasize the fact that God does not condone any sinful behavior and calls what it is what it is. If someone extrapolated some statement from God's word and conjered some excuse to rape or abuse then there were laws to deal with them. the problem is not with the laws or its language- but with the people who would mishandle it. I would focus on that fact rather than even remotely implying God was somehow at fault for wording things as He did. ;-)


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Robert Wurtz II

 2007/5/8 14:59Profile
RobertW
Member



Joined: 2004/2/12
Posts: 4636
Independence, Missouri

 Re:

Quote:
Surely any magazine rack in petrol stations and supermarkets or nearly any television program is going to provoke more pain to someone that has suffered abuse than this vivid imagery for the severeness of sin, especially since they are produced in a pro-abuse spirit ?



And the enemy is a master at making [u]God[/u] out to be the 'bad-guy'. People do not rape and abuse because of God's word- but in spite of it.


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Robert Wurtz II

 2007/5/8 15:02Profile
RobertW
Member



Joined: 2004/2/12
Posts: 4636
Independence, Missouri

 Re:

I will take back my wool and my linen,
intended to cover her nakedness. So now I will expose her lewdness before the eyes of her lovers; no one will take her out of my hands.

Here I think it is important specifically to look at what God meant by this in the passages before and after. I think it would be a great error to read into this passage the behavior of men who abuse with a God who loves His people. When I read what God is saying- it is that He is going to stop funding their harlotry with His goodness. They had been attributing God's goodness to their lovers. But that was going to stop. And when it stopped; who would deliver them? When God dried up the earth for 3.5 years- who can deliver? It is because of God's mercy that we are not consumed. If He shut down His goodness right now- who would deliver us? Who has the power to deliver when God withholds His provision? God does not owe us anything. What we have from Him is His goodness. If He but lifted His hand (the hedge as it were) our enemies would over take us. When God liftes the hedge- who can deliver?


_________________
Robert Wurtz II

 2007/5/8 15:15Profile









 Re:

PassingThu said

Quote:
It may be wise to avoid it if dealing with people that aren't going to understand it, however I would be careful with the idea of avoiding passages of scripture on a permanent basis



I worked at a University last year, and whenever anyone found out I was recently converted, scripture like these (but these ones are mine) were thrown at me like darts:

"Why were women were treated like booty of war?" (DEUT 21:14)

"Why isn't a man who lost his goodies (genitals), and fatherless bastards, acceptable in the congregation of the LORD?"(DEUT 23:1)

"Why can't a man ever have sex with his wife after she was raped?" (DEUT 24:4)

"Why is a woman 'untouchable' or 'unlovable' if she's had another man, but a man can have more than one wife - and multiple concubines - why is she abominable and he clean?" (DEUT 21:15)

"If a man marries a woman who's hymen is not in tact - even if it's because she rode horseback or fences, or whatever... ought she really to be stoned?" (DEUT 22:21)

"If a woman's raped in the city, but is petrified with fear and doesn't cry out... ought she to be stoned?" (DEUT 22:24)

Can someone please explain to me how a merciful God wrote this law and not man?

 2007/5/8 16:59









 Re:

RobertW said

Quote:
I think it would be a stretch to use the passages in this way... The are also laws in the Old Testament that deal with rape and that carried the death penalty also.



Those same laws sentenced the rape victim to death as well... because she didn't "cry out".

Just imagine how many children and women were threatened, coerced, or forced into sex with a dagger to the throat - and they were stoned for "not crying out".

Quote:
I think it would be a stretch to use the passages in this way. The reality is that these women should be outraged at things that distort men's perception of women such as pornography and the secular media. If I were in such a class I would certainly point that out. The are also laws in the Old Testament that deal with rape and that carried the death penalty also. So I think the important thing is to emphasize the fact that God does not condone any sinful behavior and calls what it is what it is. If someone extrapolated some statement from God's word and conjered some excuse to rape or abuse then there were laws to deal with them. the problem is not with the laws or its language- but with the people who would mishandle it. I would focus on that fact rather than even remotely implying God was somehow at fault for wording things as He did.



Anglicans and Catholics used the verses on slavery (even from the NT) to condone slave ownership. I see where you're going.

Quote:
"The problem is not with the laws or its language- but with the people who would mishandle it"



Well, to put the Law in perspective, all of the millions of children, teenagers, and women that have been forced into internet pornography, if they were Jews, and were reassimilated by the Jews, ought to be stoned - along with their manhandlers.

I'm not sure if I've mishandled or misinterpreted the Law. But I'm getting worried about the implications.

 2007/5/8 17:24





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