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There are 68 comments on The Bible’s Contradictions About Sex

  1. Ms Knust’s perspective is interesting as well as telling, yet I think mistaken. I write this anonymously because, frankly, what I’m going to write is going to piss some people off.

    1. To spot contradictions in the spiritual matters of the Bible (in this case, its ethics) is to cut at the very heart of Scriptures. It implies errancy in its core, a man-made fabrication, and a moral bankruptcy. Ms Knust, I believe, has ultimately shown the Bible to be a grandiose lie and her American Baptist vestment is not befitting a woman so intelligent. Her cafeteria Christianity (in which she picks and chooses what parts she likes) should be traded for total Secular Humanism — she can call her version Sexual Humanism.

    2. Her calls to a Reformation inheritance is a tad off. Following Luther’s “every man has a Pope in his belly,” mainstream Protestants have affirmed the ease of the Bible’s singular interpretation. (Also a reason why a lot of blood was spilt between fighting Protestant sects). By asserting multiple interpretations based on a delineated and phallocentric text she is really more in line with 19th cent. German Protestant textual critics and with the 20th cent. Atheism of Derrida.

    1. You have Christian ideas and are partly right but I can’t imagine Christ using the term “pissed off”. Doesn’t the scripture say that we are to be Christ like?

      1. I believe it’s in Ephesians 4:5 it says let no on wholesome words come out of your mouth that means whatever Society you live in whatever time line is supposed to be mild-mannered and not no no slang of modern society that is getting worse by the minute you say it very nice ma’am but believe me you’re a Baptist you don’t even believe in the whole Bible I’m not mad at you I’m just if you don’t believe the whole Bible you don’t believe I am has named it and God has named it in the Lord those are terms set aside for Satan and Satan worship but today we use December 25th if you don’t know what that day is God’s not going to be mad at you for that I know what that date is I know why it’s are just like Valentine’s Day is incest a check it out don’t believe me but the church don’t wake up and fear God like it says fear God means that you love him and respect him enough not to use unwholesome words not to be looking at girls rear ends and boobs and I have a problem with us and I probably always will but I know it’s wrong I’ve had homosexual tendencies my whole life I have never gave in to it because I know that’s wrong and I’ll talk to some gay people and trying to Enlighten them that God’s not mad at anybody who is deceived like I was deceived and drug addiction I was deceived and alcoholism anyway you get the point maybe

    2. I am not anonymous. I am not afraid to “p I s s people off” as you seem to be. You are wrong and hide behind your anonymity. Enough said.

    3. Waht Mahatma Ghandi mentioned about Christianity is now making sense to me. He had mentioned ” Christ, I respect and like. It’s the Christians that I don’t like”. After reading your paragraphs which desperately tries to sound intelligent and noble while trying to make the bold writer naive or foolish, the statement about Christ and Christianity then made sense to me.
      Your narrow and fixed judgement not only appalls but also disgusts me. You’re the same bunch who call themselves Taliban, Al Queda, ISIS just with a little variation.

    4. How can anyone say that the Bible condones gay marriage when it says that a single instance of a man having relations with a man is a crime worthy of death? Be sure that neither fornicators, nor adulterers, nor sodomites will inherit the Kingdom of God.

      1. But that was said in the Old Testamnet, before Christ came to die for us. Doesn’t that change now. The rules of the Old Testament with the New one?

  2. The author is lost, but has the right to her views.
    Either the Bible is inerrant or the whole thing should be thrown out as non inspired.
    Jesus claimed to be Lord God Messiah. He was slain on a cross for this.
    He is either…( A LIAR) He lied about who He claimed to be
    A LUNATIC He was self deceived and just thought He is God
    THE LORD whom He claimed to be
    Each person has to make their own determination and choice.
    If He is God and He is the truth, God does not lie…
    Jesus quoted the Bible as the reference to His authenticity AND WHO HE IS!
    At the end the Bible says . Every knee will bow and every tongue confess’
    that Jesus Christ is Lord….
    For those who are not FILLED with THE HOLY SPIRIT I can understand not believing what it says. .but once you have a true relationship with Christ
    it all becomes clearer.
    Jesus said I am the way the truth the life ( eternal) no one comes to the Father except ( thru or by ) me.

  3. This is complete non-sense. Why does BU Today continually represent the tyranny of the minority? This paper is so blatantly trying to push a liberal agenda that it makes me sick. Although I personally may support some of the progressive policies she supports, her teaching is completely contradictory and is an attempt to water down/relativize the Bible’s teachings. The overwhelming number of great thinkers in history, and most current phsicists today, who were in fact men and women of faith, would argue that the interpretation offered here is entirely inaccurate.

    1. Why are you so afraid of “liberal” views. I was taught a version of the Bible that was literally handed down for generations, no questions asked. When I read the Bible, I find things, “liberal” things, that do not square with what I have been taught.

      I do not read it to find differences, I just read it. I am not a Biblical scholar, I do not know Hebrew meanings of words, I do not know the history of things like the excellent preacher at our church does.

      But still, when I read, I find these “liberal” things in the Bible, areas, I guess God brings me to,things he wants me to know.

      So, tell me, why are you so afraid of me. Evanee

  4. no surprise it appears in Huffington Post. anyone can take the Bible, people’s spoken words, and even written words out of context to make an argument sound valid. Just one more example of watering down philosophies that eliminate the need for convictions and repentance.

  5. I went to a Catholic high school where my friends were by far more accepting of gays than were my public school friends. I think Christianity has a tremendous gift to bring to society but too often people focus on the those who are spreading ignorance and hatred through Christianity, and I think that hatred and blaming of Christians that comes from anti-Christians isolates those would-be Christians who would otherwise think objectively about the Bible and eventually present more open Christian views to the other Christians. Thank you to Stephen and Jennifer for this article.

  6. I am very confused by Ms. Knust’s stance. If Biblical passages can be used to both support and oppose different arguments/viewpoints, never really reaching a firm conclusion, then what exactly does it mean to be a Christian? Jesus clearly says that He is the way, the truth and the life. He also says that he is the only way to God. Would someone who calls himself or herself a Christian and affirms this statement only be “presuming what God had to say” on this issue? Is she saying that the Bible can only be interpreted according to a person’s personal stance and has no concrete conclusions?

    1. No, she is saying…well, she’s saying EXACTLY WHAT SHE SAID. The Bible is the source for many of our most deeply held moral values. But the Bible is not and can not be twisted into being the source for every, tiny question we ever have about life, ever. The Bible cannot be something it is not: that being a numbered rulebook, using totally unemotional text devoid of leaving at least some areas of life open to interpretation.

  7. Dismissing Paul’s exhortation to the Ephesians on the grounds of the slavery issue is not a fair treatment of the text and is allowing our current cultural context to cloud a faithful exegesis of the original texts. For the purpose of this discussion it is a side issue (though of course slavery is never a minor issue and as she points out, the Bible clearly supports an anti-slavery message). Also, to use the story of Ruth as an endorsement of pre-marital sex is also a misuse of the text. This is a narrative passage, not an epistle or expository passage, where not every detail is meant as authoritative teaching. It is like using the story of David and Bathsheba as an endorsement of extra-marital affairs.

    It was a great question to end with and an interesting response. “By claiming that we can be certain about matters that we only partially understand, we are placing ourselves in the role of God.” Is not Prof. Knust arguing with the same certainty that she is criticizing others for having? I feel like she hasn’t properly checked her own cultural context and theological leanings before interpretation.

    1. >It is like using the story of David and Bathsheba as an endorsement of extra-marital affairs.

      If we’re going to talk about “cultural context” it is just as important to note that the context of the stories themselves go to great lengths to tell you whether the action was “endorsed”. The whole point of that story is that David was punished and had to repent for his actions under great suffering, of course it wasn’t an endorsement, he of course even had to murder to hide it.

      In Ruth’s story, Ruth, Naomi, and Boaz, all of whom are propped up as people with good and loyal character all DO endorse and/or praise this action that Ruth takes.

      Similarly to something like the story of Lot’s daughters, it’s very obvious that the daughters sleep with Lot because they have no other alternative, and they actively have to deceive and hide the truth from their father. It is facetious to say that all of these actions are portrayed in the same way with equal “endorsement.”

  8. The problem is that if you’re incapable of thinking for yourself then you can read the bible multiple times a year and still not understand what it means. One commenter above state a promotion of a “liberal” agenda but the actual quote of Jesus in the bible would lead one with an understanding of the meaning of words that Jesus was perhaps the most liberal of all those who believed in him.

    I believe the American obsession with sex derives from the fact our puritanical culture has made it (and nudity) forbidden thereby making it even more appealing. If people could just accept that it’s a natural wonderful thing and leave it at that then the appeal wouldn’t be so strong. People are born with sexual urges, to attempt to eliminate it is an exercise in futility.

    Also there are many passages in the bible that mention homosexuality (see David) but those parts are conveniently ignored by the hard core, rigid Christian community. Thankfully many Christian religions aren’t so close minded.

  9. To suggest that the bible permits premarital sex while taking the text out of context shows the level of self-deception that has permeated the christian church today. Here’s the bible text in different translations:

    Amplified: “But when he lies down, notice the place where he lies; then go and uncover his feet and lie down. And he will tell you what to do.”

    KJV: “And it shall be, when he lieth down, that thou shalt mark the place where he shall lie, and thou shalt go in, and uncover his feet, and lay thee down; and he will tell thee what thou shalt do.”

    NIV: “When he lies down, note the place where he is lying. Then go and uncover his feet and lie down. He will tell you what to do.”

    Message: “When you see him slipping off to sleep, watch where he lies down and then go there. Lie at his feet to let him know that you are available to him for marriage. Then wait and see what he says. He’ll tell you what to do.”

    I could list more but there is clearly no way a sound mind would interpret “uncovering his feet” as anything related to sex. Knurst tactfully leaves out the fact that “They do marry and together they produce Obed”. Why would Boaz go through the pain of obtaining permission to marry Ruth if he didnt think it necessary to be married before sex (aka producing Obed).

    I wonder what Knurst thinks about Paul’s view on Fornication (aka pre-marital sex) in 1 corinthians 6:18 “Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body”?
    1 Corinthians 7:2 “Nevertheless, to avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife, and let every woman have her own husband”

    1. I agree with and applaud this article. I talk to Jesus all the time and this is what the Holy Spirit has shown me as well. Love your neighbor and be kind. Most fail to be consistent in these things. Also have charity help the needy! Without judgement! These are the things Jesus repeats over and over and over clearly emphasizing their importance over other details, yet most fail at these and focus on one upping each other by becoming judges of each other using the letter of the old law. Attempting to dig the splinter out of our brothers eye while disregarding the log in our own. Jesus spoke in parables and said some will not understand.
      Even his disciples whos words have been elevated by men as if they are the word of God when they were only men, yet people put their teachings of limited human understanding upon equal footing with the words of Christ himself. The Bible is both a historical document that has already been corrupted by man yet it is also the living word of God. It requires the Holy Spirit to understand the meaning. Ms. Knurst, I think your views are a refreshing ray of light in an oppressive darkness where men seek to gain their own righteousness by condemning others. Thank you!

  10. Or maybe feet just means feet. Talk about using texts for your own purposes.

    Also, as a scholar she should know that the actions of the Old Testament individuals were not prescriptive of how we should live our lives. They demonstrated a larger perspective of God’s relationship with humanity. In this case, the story is really about Ruth, a foreigner, being accepted into the Israelite people. Boaz, upon finding her at his feet, says “The LORD bless you, my daughter,” and the very next day makes arrangements to marry her. As Knust says, God in his mercy incorporates Ruth into the genealogy of Jesus.

    I am quite certain that most of the readers of this article can see through this sensationalist ‘scholarship’, so I do not feel the need to belabor my point.

  11. Ah… the good book, Full of terrible, terrible deeds done at the command of God, moral laws that we wouldn’t wipe our behinds with in today’s society (go pick up Leviticus or Deutoronomy and have yourself a good laugh), and of course THIS is divine inspiration. Law fit for eternity.

    Whenever someone slaps me over the head with the bible as the source of “absolute morality” I kindly remind the speaker that the church has been consistently hundreds of years behind culture when it comes to moral issues. Proudly leading the way into bondage- welcome to religion.

  12. Ah… the good book, Full of terrible, terrible deeds done at the command of God, moral laws that we wouldn’t wipe our behinds with in today’s society (go pick up Leviticus or Deutoronomy and have yourself a good laugh), and of course THIS is divine inspiration. Law fit for eternity.

    Whenever someone slaps me over the head with the bible as the source of “absolute morality” I kindly remind the speaker that most churches are consistently hundreds of years BEHIND culture when it comes to moral issues. Proudly leading the way into bondage. Welcome to religion.

  13. The Bible was not sent by fax from Heaven. It was a book of interpretations by many of Christ’s followers, only a few of which actually got into the actual Bible itself. This was decided by the Council of Nicaea (hence the Nicaean Creed) which when they were finally done was signed off on by the pagan Emperor Constantine who one his deathbed was baptized Christian for the sake of unifying Rome under one religion (obviously Christianity) as per being a pragmatist. Essentially the council picked and chose what parts of the Bible they wanted, and even then all of these parts that both made it in and were considered/thrown out were all written by mortal men…they weren’t there when God was talking to Christ or Moses or anyone else, they interpreted. — Moreover, that one page in the old testament book of Leviticus that damns everything and everyone (especially homosexuals based on ONE line) is what I point to as being not only b/s (another person’s interpretation) and also to all the people that point the finger at “cafeteria Christians” you are as well because you are most certainly NOT following everything on the Bible’s pages, on even Leviticus’ pages alone. — The Bible CAN be a moral guiding light in times of one’s OWN spiritual dismay, but does not work to base a country’s laws off of. We are ALL God’s creations, genetically created the way he meant us to be, sexual creatures both gay and hetero. Separations by race, gender, or sexual orientation are false human constructs…we are all human and creations of God. These endless fights are pointless. Thank you.

    1. I have read your comment and I must say, though I am baptised, I agree with pretty much everything you have said here. I have had pretty much the same idea as you for a number of years now. Even if the Bible was inspired or ordered by God, it was still written by the imperfect hand of man, understood and interpreted by the limited mind of man. It was also then edited and translated thousands of times by said imperfect man. The version of the Bible we see today, and there are thousands of them, in thousands of languages and thousands of editions, all came about in a process where details become misinterpreted or lost due to cultural differences, either between existing cultures or between the same culture but one which has changed over time, information lost in translation, transcription errors (especially early copies of the Bible that were all painstakingly copied by hand by monks under candlelight), and of course, deliberate editing for the purposes of the editor. In the end, it is not God I don’t trust, it is man. I use it as a guide only, and try to refrain myself from acting only out of compassion, exhibiting altruism, and do no harm. I may not always be successful, but the point is to try and never let up. Having opened that up, is pre-marital sex such a big taboo? Well, it’s up to the individual. Can you accept the idea? Are you doing more harm than good in engaging or withholding sex? If you find out after that you have made a mistake in deciding, how do you manage it? That’s what points to your morality, not by following rules.

    2. Constantine and the Council of Nicea did not decide the canon. There is no evidence to support the myth. Numerous patristic writings indicate that the canon was decided gradually from the first through the fourth and even fifth centuries.

  14. Her interpretations are incredibly lacking in holistic understanding for a supposed “scholar.” The Bible is NOT an ‘everything is relative’ book! She takes little defense of her own interpretations, and aims to apply everything in a contemporary politically-correct stance. Albeit, there is no “sola scriptura” mentioned in the Bible–that is to say, the Bible alone is the sole rule of authority–individuals like her can be very dangerous in confusing people with little understanding of scripture or historical context. This is why the Catholic Church has governing scholars, theologians, and apologists who have debunked these things centuries ago. Her misguided interpretations are nothing new, and she is definitely no renegade of theological debates. She may be a benevolent person and a good student, but wouldn’t last long among renowned scholars in a debate. To hold that there is no “true” interpretation is essentially a way of playing the middle ground. If there is day, then there is also night. We see opposites around us everyday. Our choices to blur them allow a vacuum filled with “progressive” lifestyles. These fit everyone’s “grey” area, no one is truly accountable, and it’s always the “backward” ancient Church’s fault for not going with the status-quo. Furthermore, it’s NOT the place of any one of us to judge another being or faith, but there most certainly was a “true” and intended message within the minds of gospel authors at the time of writing. Seeing multiple applications of a message is different and distinct from the “truth” of the intended story/verse/parable. There are most definitely academics (religious and non-religious) out there who have a significant understanding of linguistics, history, and philosophy in which they are able to understand the intended interpretation of biblical text. Certainly they debate these very understandings amongst one another, but someone is actually correct–in line with the proper context, understanding, and intentions of the authors. However, the faith and choice to follow this message is an entirely different debate. After all, living in the gray is much easier isn’t it? One could argue that right reason suggests a person need not be a scholar to gain insight from reading the Bible. One could be moved from within to better themselves, their lives, and even enrich the lives of others as a direct result. However, their proper understanding of such texts, the authority to teach and provide apologetics–closest to the “truest” interpretation–should always be viewed with careful scrutiny. There is reading a scripture, there is understanding the intended message, and, finally, the choice to incorporate and live by such intentions. The moral or ethical imperative is that we must also search responsibly for this “truth,” otherwise we live our lives according to the truths of others. Once a legitimate and rational intellectual connection is made, with due diligence to accurate history and reason, then the question becomes a matter of whether or not we will incorporate such evidence into our lives? That’s the true difficulty. It takes time, effort, and a mature introspection to bring us to that point. Immediate dismissal of legitimacy to one path or faith because of historical human mistakes (e.g. wars, persecutions, etc.), does not necessarily mean the foundational theology of said faith are somehow unsound. This may have been more the failure of human decisions, at any point in time, to live according to such principles. To dismiss such a faith or institution, should one feel is a true path, would be a dyer error and injustice to oneself. An error, nonetheless, based on the actions or failures of humans, and their failures to justly live out their own recognized “truth.” The important thing is to search and find out for ourselves. At the end of the day academics, intellect, and history will only bring you so far, and that’s where the act of faith decides if we live by a recognized truth, or take little pieces of everything and make it up as we go along (e.g. contemporary methods).

  15. All these comments are so black and white. Why do you need the Bible to be either right or wrong? Why does it have to either provide you with an answer or be thrown out? Can’t it just be complex?

  16. “the pagan Emperor Constantine who one his deathbed was baptized Christian for the sake of unifying Rome under one religion”

    He clearly was uniting the Empire under Christianity looong before his death (see his letter to Bishop Eusebius). His delayed baptism is more easily explained by pointing to the theology of the time: that a grievous sin post-“illumination” would be unforgivable.

    “Moreover, that one page in the old testament book of Leviticus that damns everything and everyone (especially homosexuals based on ONE line) is what I point to as being not only b/s”

    Let’s be honest here. There is plenty in both testaments that screams anti-homosexuality and speaks to the Bible’s moral corruption. The gymnastics people perform to make the Bible say what the want is impressive — and a waste of time. It’s just a bunch of uninspired nonsense from a semi-mountainous tribe’s bronze-age homophobic drivel. All the moral platitudes of the Bible are conquered by a single writing of Mills, James, Adams, or even Auden.

    “The Bible CAN be a moral guiding light in times of one’s OWN spiritual dismay, but does not work to base a country’s laws off of.”

    On this we agree, to the extent that the Bible can be read like poetry or myth. But to read the Bible “religiously” is a dangerous practice that engenders hate, prejudice, and ignorance. In other words, read the Bible as a doubter, not as a Christian. But why stop at the Bible? Why not turn to Thor and Humpty-Dumpty for guidance as well? Geez, they still pray to Tengri out in Mongolia.

  17. I will limit my words to only a few. First it is evident that Jennifer Knust has taken scripture and twisted it into her own understanding. It’s very unfortunate that these articles are published as it serves both to confuse new believers AND give argument to nay-sayers of the Bible. Nothing she said surprises me, why? Well first off she is an ordained pastor, the Bible clearly says in 1 Tim. 2: 12-14 that women are not to be in authority over men, which includes teaching the gospel or becoming an Elder. It is clear that Ms. Knust has is not submitting to the word of God but rather making the word of God submit to her.

    1. ‘Women are not to be in authority over men, including teaching the gospel’ – so I guess the entire women’s rights movement is a curse of Satan? These type of dogmatic statements and out of touch stances that reflect outdated cultural values repel people from wanting to associate with the Christian movement and give a bad taste to the name of Christianity.

  18. Description vs. Prescription

    – King David committed adultery: this biblical narrative does not mean Scripture prescribes David’s actions.

  19. I thought love God with all your heart mind and soul came before love your neighbor as yourself. This lady seems confused. And as far as this translates to sex, if you and your spouse save yourself for marriage, you and your spouse feels more loved after marriage occurs it is more special. This interpret anything you’d like out of the Bible may work well for her. But I consider it near fact that if you abstain and finally have sex with your wife or husband, they will feel more special than if you have sex however you want and then with your spouse.

      1. It is cute to think we can truely love as Christ does. As humans, we do our best (i hope). However,in the abscence of perfection,there are many things we can do to show love and curate love. flowers, letters, gifts,etc..waiting is simply another gift and it reaps a blessing. I feel we hold waiting for sex on a pedestal because it fits our cultural agenda. I waited and i feel blessed everyday in my marriage. However, I also feel that as flawed humans, we over preach waiting as an end all be all. of course, I am flawed so, what do i know.

  20. Bravo Ms. Knutson! These poor old dillusional boys. Give themselves reasons to be right based on a magic book written in a time when they had no in door plumbing! Ha! I can imagine their bulging red neck veins busting out right now! I think they are all living in their own hell. Poor old dillusional boys……

  21. yeah. no repentance, no feelings, no morals, no evil, no goodness. and what about the devil is he another misinterpretation in the bible? or just a manmade figure. WE ARE ALL GONNA DIE ONE DAY, LIFE IS SHORT INDEED.

  22. For those of you who are saying that she does not have a total understanding and has not done research this is NOT her book. The book goes into greater detail.

  23. Look all you people. Stop being such harsh judges. There is nowhere in the bible at all that discriminates pre martial sex. And I have read all the Scriptures so I’m not going to list them. Do your own research. However, it basically states that immoral sex is wrong. If you plan to marry your partner, and you do, then see was never immoral. If you have sex with your partner before marriage, the bible says do the right thing and marry them to make it right. Prove me wrong

  24. The link below leads to absolutely the most detailed answer you will ever read that the idea of PRE-MARITAL SEX as a sin does NOT exist in the Bible. There are not even rules that require a ceremony, a minister nor a written agreement to establish marriage, certainly not a requirement for any government to issue a license. Pastors and Preachers will NEVER teach this to you, because it would cause the congregation to divide and their salary to stop. It would cause loan payments to the bank for the church building to go into default.

    It’s too long to post here- the blog will not allow it. But I guarantee if you read it, you will be set free from FALSE GUILT caused by COUNTERFEIT SIN.

    Please read here:

  25. The Bible = GOD inspired GOD breathed it IS the WORD of GOD.
    The words that are contained therein are His when we as TRUE Christians stand firm on the Truth (that is NOT relative , TRUTH IS TRUTH) then we are not telling you “our opinion, our conviction, our belief on the subject ” we are sharing Gods Word that is sharper then any two edged sword. When people are confronted with it they have options to hear, heed and believe or they can deny truth and carry on or they can like in this particular article take what you have learned through the Bible and twist it into a good book that has many interpretations and warp it in to describing a FALSE IDOL god that better suits you and feels better to you and there is a reason it will feel better and it’s because you are not held accountable to the ONE TRUE GOD that says HE is the way the only way. We as TRUE Christans are not perfect by ANY MEANS but the difference is that we have came to knowledge through Christ redemption on the Cross that we are the Most Wretched of sinners and with out our savior we would still be Lost and without any hope, TRUE Christians need to remind ourselves that we are the cheifest of sinners we need to not look down at the Fornicaters, idoliture, the homosexual, the hypocrite the thief the whoever we come in contact with with love and concern for their soul we are here to bring the good news of the Gospel so that they may be saved all we can do is share the TRUTH of Gods word then the rest is up to them and God who reigns on high.

    1. Before you take on the role of the Almighty, kindly READ UP on the creation/compilation of this Bible that you so hold dear. Did God write all those words and sent them down from heaven? … How then did the Bible come into our possession? … Who gave it to us? … Did God throw down the Bible from heaven?
      When you growup being taught that the world is flat … if you are an unthinking and blind-loyalty child, you will believe the world to be flat … and die protecting your belief.
      As such … you are no different to the ISIS, etc etc

  26. She is mostly write, the Bible is not so clear cut in many texts, for instance the command in the old testament that thou shalt not wear what the opposite gender wears is taking literally by many Christians even wearing dresses to church. The same Christians will then attack folks who disagree with this as being “liberal”, “new age”.

    However even conservative jewish scholars have written that this verse especially since the translation of “wear it” can mean “bear it” refers to weapons being worn, there is numerous evidence from the tradition of women wearing weapons like men to please the greek gods to yael killing sisera with a different weapon, also pertained means belonging to or property. Also the word “skirt” is translated as being worn by men such as Saul, don’t take your father’s skirt, bonnetts are dresses, and breeches.

    This is a bit of a different topic, but conservative christians take things literally and dismiss arguments as being too liberal, furthermore the Bible is unclear on abortion, why would God Kill david’s child, perhaps he killed it when he was unborn with a fetal defect or perhaps God didn’t kill it, it was a result of a genetic defect. The Catholic Church is predominant with the obsession of abortion and somehow that has spilled into over to the non-catholics and then used by conservatives vs. the non “conservative” christians.

  27. When I desire to understand the intent and spiritual meaning of Scripture, I have no need to consult a theologian, I need only consult the Holy Spirit who guided the writers. On the other hand, if I desire to ascertain the historical-cultural context of a passage of Scripture, it is then that I may need to consult a theologian. I think it is important to know the difference between the fundamental spiritual intent of a passage versus the historical-cultural context in which a passage was written.

  28. A really important and presently relevant discussion and point of view. Many thanks. We do need to revisit biblical interpretation. All the churches should be engaging too. So many current social and moral tragedies are a direct result of the biblical misinterpretation of human sexual relations. I am a Catholic, who is appalled by my own Church. So I am coming to discussions like this for clarity. Thank you Ms Knust.

  29. What is the “sin” or “crime” of wanting to play the role of God? We, humans, live in a world where “everyone” actually plays the role of God in all domains of life. That is exactly what presidents of nations, politicians, doctors, teachers, professors, priests, pastors, etc., etc. do. Why is the scandal for that? After all, “The Kingdom of God is Within You.” I love your way of thinking, Jennifer Knust. Thank you for your thoughts!

  30. It’s obvious the author s biased, I’ll informed, and has not read the entire text. Many things she stated are conjecture not fact. 2 Timothy 3:16 should be read before saying the authors shaped the Word. T also says anyone who takes away or adds to the scriptures will be punished. Be careful when you say scriptures have been massaged into what man wants.

  31. I dont usually comment on these things and i stumbled across this post, but I will pray for you all.
    The bible is gods inspired word its what god said and it is a rule book, the bible says the foundation of wisdom is the fear of the lord. In the cause of gay marriage genesis 1 says plainly god made adam and eve, not adam and steve so that alone shows how god wants marriage one man and one woman. In the case of divorce the new testament jesus says god hates divorce. Like i said i will pray for christlike lovingkindness, also keep reading and studying gods word i pray you learn the truth

  32. I admire this author and am inspired to read her book. I think she’s right and I’ve been saying similar things although not so eloquently for a while. People play God and quote parts of the bible useful for their point and often do so in soft condescending tones that can be maddening and closed minded.

    Questioning the bible seems to be a frightening prospect for many, perhaps because their faith is built upon rigid rules they daren’t challenge.

    The Bible is a useful historical record that tells us something of God. It is dangerous to rely on it word for word and take it literally without considering the context and testing it.

    I completely agree the the love thy neighbour principal makes sense even if Jesus had not been the one to say it. What I find frightening is people’s interpretations of biblical text which they impart with such authority that vulnerable people take their opinions as gospel itself, even though it so often resembles little likeness to the text.

    I totally agree that people need to own their own take on the bible and the way they chose to wield it, sometimes like a weapon to maintain a sense of superiority over others.

    Never before have I appreciated that the Bible does not speak on abortion. I agree it does not specifically speak on pre marital sex and that people make the leap from words like ‘fornication’ (notably used alongside ‘orgy’ and seemingly less severe sins such as ‘jealousy’) and ‘impurity’.

    How many of us Christian women are screwed up about sex believing ourselves to be impure and shameful for even being sexual beings?

    Mary managed to get pregnant without suffering the indignity of sex (sarcasm intended) and so there seems to be this impossible standard on women who aren’t allowed to enjoy sex because that would be shameful and embarassing but also, aren’t allowed to reject their husbands sexual advances, as apparently they don’t have authority over their own bodies.

    The church is crying out for some healthy, balanced perspective on sex for women in particular who so often are confused and emotionally hurt by the accusations that get levelled at them (for being a temptress – notwithstanding this being advocated in Ruth – , for engaging in immoral pre marital sex, for declining their husbands and damaging their fragile egos).

    I welcome an honest, open and accurate reflection on the biblical text in relation to sex without embellishment by self professed wise male authority figures who frankly have no idea how it feels to be a judged Christian woman.

    I also enjoyed this interpretation of Ruth and recently had a debate with my Dad about Ruth. I saw the book as being about a woman seducing a man in return for financial security – almost as though she was prostituting herself for the benefit of her and her mother in law. I felt, from a feminist perspective, disappointed that Ruth is always praised in church as being a story showing God bestowing his blessing on her, when my reading of it is that Ruth’s mother in law set her up for her financial gain, suggesting that Ruth rely on her sexual prowess for their survival. Her mother in law also seemed to have to little agency over her own land. Ruth behaved in a way which might be frowned upon in modern Christian circles.

    My Dad, on the other hand, had a very romantic interpretation of Ruth. He said that she had a soft spot for Boaz and was not seducing him so much as lying in wait for him to awaken and give him a hint of her desire to marry him. He considered it a subtle sign of her intent for Boaz to accept or reject. (I considered this exceedingly niave and suggested that if I were to lie close to a sleeping man and surprise him by my being there in the morning, there would be nothing subtle about it!). He thinks that Boaz in turn had a soft spot for Ruth and was a perfect gentleman before marriage. I was not, until today, aware that the Hebrew for feet is sometimes genitals! Enlightening stuff.

    1. If the the Bible is not truth for you and only a book of myths and fairytales maybe you should walk away and find a different book. I’m not trying to be be mean or condescending but to a lot of people its a whole lot more its the very word of GOD not the invention of man.

    2. Oh My Gosh!!!! What’s dangerous is you saying we shouldn’t rely on the bible word for word. That’s as far as I got! Good grief. Inspired??!! God should inspire you, not the flesh and bones surrounding our souls. Those souls, every soul on this entire planet, in the entire world, they do live on, after this physical body is dead, our souls-still seeing, hearing, feeling, tasting-will go to one of 2 places. The Lord let’s you choose which path you take. I choose heaven. I choose Jesus. Once you’re standing before God, during you’re time of judgement, it’s too late to change your mind then. I pray for you also that the Lord show Himself to you and that you ask him to forgive you before it’s too late.

  33. “By claiming that we can be certain about matters that we only partially understand, we are placing ourselves in the role of God. From a Christian perspective anyway, this is a serious sin. Certainty is not granted to us.”

    Oh, please. Firstly, Jesus didn’t write a book. Neither He or the apostles or the first Christians had “The Bible”. Jesus founded a CHURCH and Peter was the first head of it: Matthew 16:18: “And I say also unto thee, that thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.”

    For centuries, “authority” for Christians came from the CHURCH as well as from Scripture, from the teachings of the fathers and councils, and from traditions and customs that were deemed sacred over time. I agree that the Bible was never meant to be THE one and only source of truth for Christians, but to assert that we really don’t know “God’s will” – that there is no overarching authority in regards to moral matters – that these things are left open to interpretation – flies in the face of what Christ founded and suggests that He and His Holy Spirit are not with us; that we’re on our own.

  34. Someone quoted this Scripture as evidence against homosexuality. In reality it appears as evidence against any rational thought and assumes is learned behavior. No straight man has ever, ONCE, abandoned their natural relations for unnatural ones. It’s too easy to point out how ignorant writers of the bronze age were.

    Romans 1:27 “In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another.”

  35. She is disrespecting the Authority of the Bible!

    She is turning the Bible into a secular book written by men uninspired by GOD!

    WE MUST read and believe that the Bible is what it says itis orour destination is not good!

    Please rejoice in the LORD FOR HE IS GOOD!

  36. To me she is right why because if u read bible well and understood it then u will encounter with many contradictions and u all believe me that there is no way of almighty God or Jesus Christ contradicted them self, that is why she said bible doesn’t have a conclusion do to continued change it getting from generation to generations. And if u are to read bible of difference churches u will also observe a different interpretation on various verses, that is why she said so.

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