Gender Bias in the Bible

Exposing the missing feminine voice in the masculine landscape of Scripture

 

Introduction

The approach I am taking in this book is the argument from bias. Starting with the question of what is it that makes something biased? Well, first off there must be an innate inequality and injustice that is built into the doctrine, which is exactly what we have in the Bible starting with the book of Genesis and continuing throughout the entire text. In my argument I assert that the Bible is irreparably flawed because of its inherent gender bias, which is all the proof that is needed to invalidate its god as authentic. With the many examples I give it will become abundantly clear that the biased nature of the Bible is wholly in keeping with societal and cultural norms of the time periods in which it was written.  When one looks back through the recorded history of civilization and across cultural boundaries a clear theme of the male domination of women becomes apparent. Comparing this to the fact that all the major religions that oppress women are patriarchal and have been started by men,  it stands to reason that the gods of those religions are also created by men. When an overarching system decrees worth and value by gender, questions must be asked of that framework’s validity. I think most people have an innate sense of what is just and fair and what is not if they stop for a moment and think about it, the problem lies in what we are taught by the society we live in. If one is raised in a culture of male  domination it seems normal for women to be denied opportunities and advantages that men are privileged to. This is why many cultures past and present overlook the blatant bias that is rampant in the biblical text.

Violence against women is an everyday occurrence, it is estimated that one out of three women will experience some form of violence in their lifetimes. This violence is inflicted upon them by men who operate under a mentality of male superiority. The mindset is propagated culturally through religion and patriarchal domination by aggressive domineering men. Generation after generation men forcibly impose their biased ways of thinking upon their children who many times blindly accept and never question gender inequality. This culture of male violence and gender bias remains strong in our modern western society that is predominately Christian. I think a good share of the blame lies in our long history of patriarchal rule with its deep roots firmly planted in the dominant patriarchal religion of Christianity. A good definition of patriarchy is given by Allan Johnson in his book The Gender Knot, “A society is patriarchal to the degree that it promotes male privilege by being male dominated, male identified and male centered. It is also organized around an obsession with control and involves as one of its aspects the oppression of women.”

The correlation between patriarchy and violence against women is an historical fact, also by the very nature of such societies that are male centered and male dominated women are denied equal human rights. The fundamental flaw in the idea of biblical male hierarchy being the superior god ordained order is that societies structured on male dominance always begets oppression of women and forced subservience. The promotion of patriarchy by religious fundamentalists who claim that male leadership of the family and society is the optimal structure is in grievous error. It is a known fact that the most pervasive human rights violations are perpetrated by men against women and this arises out of societies ruled by men…this of course begs the question as to why an all knowing god (if one exists) would set up such a hierarchy to begin with, knowing that the oppression of half the population would be the outcome. Those who do not speak out against injustice, wherever it is found are in compliance with it.

While every culture and society has its share of bias and violence my purpose in writing a book let on the subject is to expose the nature of the biblical god, Yahweh by walking through the male landscape of the Bible. After being a Christian for nearly thirty years I will show why I no longer believe the Bible can be the “Word of God”, based on the fact that Scripture is arbitrarily biased toward the male and missing the feminine voice. It will become clear to the reader that no gender-neutral god who is purported to be the creator of the universe, could inspire the authorship of a book so obviously unbalanced and biased against women. The first of these problems arise with god being referred to as masculine, because the idea of masculine must be defined relative to a feminine counterpart. So, where is his feminine complement? Something can only be viewed as masculine if it is in contrast to something feminine, which is why a true god must be gender neutral. But, the biblical authors coming from a patriarchal society saw god through their own masculine eyes and mapped their egos onto him; consequently the language they wrote in was masculine and the god they portrayed was male.

The Bible is a book describing doctrines of what I call a cult of masculinity, every page within its covers exposes the male landscape that dominates Christian and Jewish history. This cult of masculinity forms the mindset that males are placed at the top of the hierarchal order by their god with females at the bottom being in subjugation to them. Over, and over again the same bias is exposed; women are never allowed to walk in their full integrity and potential, instead they are relegated to a set status of childbearing and subservience which they can never rise above. The perspective and viewpoint of half the population is missing from the pages of Scripture – the feminine voice – imagine how this has reflected on human thinking? To only be exposed to a masculine point of view with gender being the number one factor in determining human rights and morals is very skewed and biased, but it is exactly what we see in the Bible. Does it not seem odd and very convenient that all the laws and commands pertaining to women contained in the Bible are only given to men who then relay the message to their feminine counterparts? Why would Yahweh not directly speak to the women that these laws are given to? Is it because men wish to dominate and control women? Just more evidence pointing toward the authorship of the Bible being that of primitive men who patterned their deity after their own male egos and developed a religion in keeping with the structure of the patriarchal societies they lived in.

Do you realize that the Bible itself never claims Yahweh as its author; it is the men who penned its pages that declare the words written to be from a divine male source. It is the male ego that takes the shape of god. There is only one place in the New Testament where a man, the apostle Paul states that all doctrines within the Bible (Old Testament) are god given and to be use for teaching and instruction, but nary is a word spoken about which books are to be included in this tome of god’s laws. We are told to have faith in a particular god and believe merely because men say so. None of the men in this biblical cult of masculinity have proved their trustworthiness to us, so why should we believe them. Men with a masculine bias have made declarations that the god of the Bible is true and should be trusted, yet he has not been proven to be trustworthy or his words true, especially for women. Are we to accept on blind faith that men are to rule over women, simply because words in an ancient book written by men say so? I should think not. If the cards were flipped how would men feel if women published a book claiming to have received revelation from a female deity, who declared all men to submit to women?

Prior to the worship of a single male god beginning with Abraham, many gods and goddesses were worshiped, and often times the act of creation was shared between male and female deities. All this changed with the emergence of monotheism and the Hebrew religion, now the act of creation and birth came from a sole male deity without the need of a natural feminine complement found throughout life, this in turn elevated the position of male above that of female. A new convention took shape in the creation story “birth from the male”, whereas before, life came forth from the female, now the male god speaks life from his words, and brings forth woman from the man…setting the male in the superior position.

The reasons given in the Bible for its lopsided view of women’s rights lack any kind of justification, beginning in Genesis with the supposed transgression of Eve. The biblical account tells us that because Eve acted upon her desire for knowledge, and ate of the forbidden fruit offered her by the snake, the female gender was to be forever cursed with the punishment of being ruled over by the male, even though many places in Scripture including Proverbs, speaks of knowledge as something to be desired. From that point on, and continuing through the entire Bible one finds an arbitrary bias against women for no reason other than gender. This type of gender bias was common in patriarchal cultures of that time period and throughout history, so its reflection in the Bible is no surprise.

In the following pages I will set forth my case of male bias based solely upon verses presented in the Bible. As one reads through these verses it will become obvious that male hands are all over Scripture, giving us an account of its god as seen through masculine eyes. Over, and over again you will see that the rules set forth as being given from “God” are based solely on gender and are strikingly similar to the customs and traditions prevalent in male dominated societies at the time. This male bent towards the unequal treatment of women and viewing them as property is not the only bias one finds in the pages of Scripture; god’s very description is portrayed as a masculine warrior named Yahweh, who is given all the standard male attributes…even down to his title as “Father”.

This leads to an evaluation of the difference in the type of love a father gives versus the type of love a mother gives. Fatherly love is generally based on “conditional” love that must be deserved, and can be lost if one does not do what is expected. In the nature of fatherly love lies the fact that obedience becomes the main virtue and disobedience the main sin…its punishment is the withdrawal of fatherly love. Its principle is “I love you because you fulfill my expectations” it says, “You did wrong and you must change your ways if you want me to like you”. This conditional love is the type of love one finds in the masculine god Yahweh, who is portrayed as divine Father. This is in contrast to a mother’s love which begins as “unconditional”, because from birth the child can do nothing to earn love; he is loved simply because he is. In presenting god as father the unconditional side of love is all but missing from Scripture, leaving those who read its pages lacking in the motherly perspective and giving an unbalanced framework from which to view human relations.

 

The Cult of Masculinity and the Feminine Voice

You will now begin a journey through the male landscape of the Bible, what you will find missing from this masculine landscape is the feminine voice that tempers and balances the aggressive, dominating nature of primitive men whose warrior mentality colors much of biblical history. The cult of masculinity prevalent in most patriarchal societies focuses on the male ego, so the actions of men is what we see dominating the pages of Scripture. The desires of the male were of utmost importance, so to assure those desires got fulfilled women were subjugated and laws made and enforced to assure their compliance.

 

Chapter 1

The Male Mindset

 

Once a person opens their eyes it becomes totally obvious that the perspective from which the Bible was written is male…what is missing is the feminine voice. Everything that is penned in it is done so from a masculine point of view, right down to the way women are described and treated. The words of Scripture are composed as a man would write when speaking of and describing the actions of women from a masculine perspective, when it should be composed in a totally neutral way if it were truly from a god who is neither male nor female. As you will see it is the masculine ego that has shaped and formed the image of Yahweh. The Bible is centered on and revolves around the male, from its foundational words to the conquering Christ of Revelation…declaring all that is Bible is male.

Six anti-woman claims that the Bible promotes:

 

  1. Women are considered the property of the man.
  2. Women are ruled over by men solely based on their gender.
  3. Women do not share equal rights with men.
  4. Women are considered of less value than men.
  5. Progeny is claimed to be carried through the loins of the male.
  6. The Biblegod is exclusively portrayed with “male” attributes.

 

Being born female at any point in history has always been an extreme disadvantage, but especially so during biblical times when the Hebrew god declared woman to be created from man and for man, endowing her with the status of “Property”. This title was forever engraved in stone in the 10th Commandment, where a man’s wife is numbered second among the possessions of ones neighbor that should not be coveted.

Exodus 20:17 Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s house (PROPERTY), thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s wife (PROPERTY), nor his manservant (PROPERTY), nor his maidservant (PROPERTY), nor his ox (PROPERTY), nor his ass (PROPERTY), nor any thing (PROPERTY) that is thy neighbour’s.

 A common theme that runs through most of the worlds’ major religions devised by men is the MISTREATMENT, and INEQUALITY of women. What one finds is endless squabbling between men and their gods about things like how many wives a man can have, if he can divorce his wife, who’s property a woman is and how much she is worth, what rights does she have concerning inheritance, is a woman impure longer after she has a female baby than after she has a male baby, if a man claims a woman is not a virgin what punishments are inflicted upon her, or if he accuses her of adultery because he is jealous what must she suffer? Sometimes a man can have a pagan wife (Ruth was a Moabite), other times he cannot, sometimes it is okay to keep the pagan virgin women, other times they must all be killed. Should women cover only their heads, or their entire faces, can they cut their hair or speak in church, or must she be silent, will a woman be saved by childbirth, or not, must a woman submit to a man as her head, or not? Bottom line: does a woman have any rights aside from those given her by a man? The list could go on and on, but I think my point has been made…it looks man made.

The one thing above all else that should reveal the Bible as being entirely of human construction is its viewpoint on women and that it is totally centered on the male. No creator of the magnitude and intelligence it would take to form the heaven and earth, with all of its fine tuning would stoop to such pettiness, and perversion, as to create a species called the human animal  that must obey a set of such blatantly skewed and gender biased laws and rules (that no one can, or should keep),as those portrayed in the Bible…where half the population is kept from realizing their full potential in perpetuity. The irony is that the Bible like many other religious texts creates the very problems it sets out to solve.

We have recorded history as an example of how men have felt about women down through the ages…the Bible just exemplifies and reinforces those feelings, and attributes them to a god. Men have always used their physical strength and power to promote their superiority and suppress those who are weaker, but those who adhere to the Bible justify it by declaring god made the laws!  The same holds true for many of the other major religions of the world and their various laws. The male mindset has remained fairly consistent throughout history, men show their prowess and potency by their sexuality and how many women they can dominate; whereas women are considered to be whores and defiled if they show their sexuality. The double standards are everywhere one looks, inside and outside of religion, which is why it is so obvious to see how the Bible reflects the mindset of men worldwide.

In many places in the Old Testament women are considered the property of the man, and are little more than sex slaves at the beck and call of their male masters, all of this is condoned by the god of man’s making. A woman did not even have control over her own body to say if she wished to marry or not, or bear children or not. This is by no means exclusive to the Bible, ancient and modern cultures alike are riddled with such examples, but the sad thing being is that in the majority of the cases the reason for the inequality is attributed to a teaching of a particular religion’s god or gods.

The huge gaping wound created by the Old Testament’s promotion of the abuse of women has only become a festering, infected sore, with the advent of the New Testament and continues to ooze its infection into modern times.  As my vision becomes clearer, and clearer, I see there is absolutely no way a book such as the Bible that shares a common theme of abuse, and inequality of women with most of the worlds major religions, can ever again hold any credence as being the word of god… that is not to say that the Bible in and of itself is not a wonderful treasure of ancient literature that reflects the human experience of “God”. But the very fact that the Bible diminishes a woman place to the status of property should in and of itself be a clue to its man made nature. The only way any system can truly prosper is if it is based on equality which the Bible most certainly does not.

If one looks closely at the layout of many passages in the Bible it quickly becomes evident how strongly the male mindset of the time period it was written in is mapped onto its pages. The one passage I want to focus on in this section comes from the book of Zechariah. We read in this prophecy that when the day of the Lord comes he will gather the nations against Jerusalem and in so doing will allow the women of the city to be raped, half the city to be taken captive, and the rest of the people to be cut off from the city. The prophecy then goes on to say after Yahweh causes this invasion to take place, he then goes to fight against the very nations he used to punish his people with in the first place.

Zech 14:1-2 Behold, the day of the LORD cometh, and thy spoil shall be divided in the midst of thee. For I will gather all nations against Jerusalem to battle; and the city shall be taken, and the houses rifled, and the women ravished; and half of the city shall go forth into captivity, and the residue of the people shall not be cut off from the city. Then shall the LORD go forth, and fight against those nations, as when he fought in the day of battle.

The first observation I would like to take note of is the raping of the women of the city, this act of violence is specifically targeted against women and is something that happens quite frequently (even in modern times) in the “wars of men” to prove their masculinity and to dominate women. So, why is it that we see Yahweh acting in ways that exactly match the ways of men? If Yahweh is so concerned with punishing his people for their transgressions, why is it that he allows the women to be singled out for extra punishment that is specifically based on their gender? It seems pretty obvious that this passage was written from a totally male mindset, recounting what actually goes on when men go to battle of their own accord, but one would not expect the creator of the universe to act in the same manner. The raping of women by government forces in war is something that we still see happening today in many countries, the U.N. has called sexual violence in war “history’s oldest and least condemned crime”,  so it is definitely ingrained in the mindset of the cult of masculinity that the Bible so clearly reveals. Let us not be fooled that the male mindset of  domination that created the biblical god was any different two or three thousand years ago then it is today, which is why it is so readily accepted by many patriarchal societies.

The second observation is concerning the notion of the Lord gathering all the nations and using them to as a tool to battle against Jerusalem, only to turn around when the battle is finished and go forth to fight against the very nations he used to begin with…seems more like something devised in the minds of men then coming from the divine source of all creation. Just one more reason to take a second look at a book that is espoused by many to be the “Word of God”, but looks more and more man made all the time.

 

Integrity:

Another manifestation of bias in the Bible is its integrity. For something to have integrity it must show a unity of structure, a framework of coherent intent that binds the whole together; biblical morality has neither. From its first pages, a patriarchal order is established that is unbalance and biased; therefore unity is lacking at the most basic, fundamental level. What seems to start out as an integral whole in the first chapter of Genesis – with male and female made in god’s image – quickly erodes away. Beginning in chapter two, rules are set up based on obedience instead of morality and decrees are meted out which are neither moral, nor just. The ultimate judge of what is moral is found in the flourishing and well being of the individual, and the community, both of which are not consistently found in biblical decrees. When the well being of a person is compromised because of unjust treatment and bias, the integrity of the whole begins to disintegrate resulting in a loss of unity. This can be seen clearly in the decrees and commands of the biblical god, beginning with the curses of Adam and Eve.

 Gen.3:16-17 Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee. And unto Adam he said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life;

 Purposely cursing humanity with sorrow and pain does not cause flourishing and well being, thus moral integrity is sorely lacking in the biblical narrative of god’s interaction with the first humans. Well being of an individual or community is always the optimal state of existence and its lack is the driving force behind progressing forward to balance the inequity. Sickness and disease continually push humans forward to find cures; hardship and struggle elicit ideas to lessen burdens, all with the goal of well being in mind. Flourishing is the intent of life and anything with moral integrity contributes to that end. Sadly this is not found in the curses and decrees of Genesis where the biblical god chooses to arbitrarily inflict pain, sorrow and hardship upon humanity for the sin of disobedience. There is nothing even remotely close to moral integrity in the edict of grievous labor, and suffering placed upon the first couple, which seems to be a common theme throughout the discourse of the Bible. The woman especially suffers under these curses, explicitly showing the biased nature of the biblical god.

A false connection between the biblical god and moral integrity has been unwittingly propagated by Christians for centuries, because of misguided and erroneous teachings. The immoral statutes of Genesis are only the tip of a very large iceberg which hides under the banner proclaiming “God is Love”. It is only through opening ones eyes and viewing the Bible from an objective perspective can the truth be clearly seen. Another good example of the lack of ethical behavior is found in Exodus.

 Exo.20:5 Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me;

Exo. 34:7 Keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, and that will by no means clear the guilty; visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children, and upon the children’s children, unto the third and to the fourth generation.

 According to the biblical standard of morality it is perfectly acceptable for punishment to be inflicted by Yahweh upon children, grandchildren, great grandchildren and great, great, grandchildren for the sins of their father. How anyone could think that this kind of action promotes the well being of a people is beyond me? Yet, this is what is found throughout the biblical text, revealing that moral integrity is sorely lacking. The flourishing of human well being is the quintessential definition and sign of moral integrity; it is the true test of knowing whether or not an action is beneficial to an individual causing them to thrive. It is obvious from many passages in Scripture that domination and oppression are elevated biblical concepts and ones attributed to and sanctioned by its god, as is exemplified in the verse below.

 Psalm 144:1-2 Blessed be the Lord my strength, which teacheth my hands to war, and my fingers to fight: My goodness, and my fortress; my high tower, and my deliverer; my shield, and he in whom I trust; who subdueth my people under me.

 Teaching people to go to war, and fight while subduing others under their rule is not something that promotes the flourishing and well being of humanity as a whole. Yet, this is exactly what the Bible is full of; its pages are literally overflowing with one battle after another, most directed by Yahweh for the purposes of conquering, subduing and killing people. During many of these battles little concern is given for the human rights of the conquered, especially the women who are often times taken as “war booty” to be “sex slaves” for the men, all of which is explicitly condoned and sanctioned by Yahweh. Anything that takes away from the well being of an individual and denies their human rights is immoral and this is especially evident in the treatment of women as property.

 Judge 21:11-12 And this is the thing that ye shall do, Ye shall utterly destroy every male, and every woman that hath lain by man. And they found among the inhabitants of Jabesh-Gilead four hundred young virgins, that had known no man by lying with any male: and they brought them unto the camp to Shiloh, which is in the land of Canaan.

Deuteronomy 21:10-12 When thou goest forth to war against thine enemies, and the LORD thy God hath delivered them into thine hands, and thou hast taken them captive, And seest among the captives a beautiful woman, and hast a desire unto her, that thou wouldest have her to thy wife; Then thou shalt bring her home to thine house;

Num.31:1 And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying…17) Now therefore kill every male among the little ones, and kill every woman that hath known man by lying with him. But all the women children, that have not known a man by lying with him, keep alive for yourselves.

 These examples that I have given are by no means rare, in fact quite the contrary is true, they are more plentiful than the verses that speak of god’s love, which in and of itself shows a complete lack of integrity in the area of biblical morality. The accusation of “cherry picking” is many times used as an attack on those who point out questionable passages, but the mere presence of these immoral verses should tell the reader something about the author’s moral and ethical standards. If one were to take upon themselves a project of great magnitude, which would include copying only those passages in the Bible that truly reflect 21st century morals on human rights, I would dare say it would be a scant book indeed. Much of the Old Testament would be removed and a good portion of the New. For anything to have moral integrity, it MUST promote wholeness and the ultimate well being of the individual and the human community at large, which is not true of much of the Bible. That is why any religious text, purported to be given by a god MUST pass this test of moral integrity, otherwise it should remain classified among the works of men. Below is one example of many from the Bible that would NOT pass the test for moral integrity, as it does not promote the well being or flourishing of the human community.

 Deut.6:10-11 And it shall be, when the LORD thy God shall have brought thee into the land which he sware unto thy fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, to give thee great and goodly cities, which thou buildedst not, And houses full of all good things, which thou filledst not, and wells digged, which thou diggedst not, vineyards and olive trees, which thou plantedst not; when thou shalt have eaten and be full;

Deut 7:2-3 And when the LORD thy God shall deliver them before thee; thou shalt smite them, and utterly destroy them; thou shalt make no covenant with them, nor shew mercy unto them: Neither shalt thou make marriages with them; thy daughter thou shalt not give unto his son, nor his daughter shalt thou take unto thy son.

The lack of ethical, gender and moral integrity in the Bible is obvious from just the sampling of verses that I have presented, because they all have one thing in common – an absence of concern for the well being and flourishing of the human community – this disqualifies and thus invalidates much of the Bible, showing it cannot be used as an ethical judge or moral guide.

 

The Value of Well Being

Anything that helps to alleviate suffering in this world, no matter how small is considered a good thing; whatever unnecessarily adds to suffering is considered bad. This is the value of well-being. As can be clearly seen from examples in the Bible, unnecessary suffering caused by a tyrannical deity that demands worship and praise at the expense of well being, and metes out punishment when it is not received, does nothing to promote human flourishing or alleviate suffering. What good parent ever causes their children to suffer needlessly, or inflicts cruel punishment upon them because they do not praise or honor them, yet this is what the Bible teaches as acceptable, with its deity being portrayed as a father who instructs his children in this manner. The parenting lessons one learns from biblical instruction are at best unjust and unfair with rules being meted out according to ones gender or status.  A good example is that of David being excused of the crime of murder because of his status as king, and Bathsheba being punished by having her firstborn son stricken with sickness and dying because of David’s sin. If a high value is not placed on human well-being and fairness, moral integrity begins to decline.

Morality based on religious edicts is what allows people to treat others in a way that compromises their well-being and integrity, because the responsibility lies at the feet of the deity who decreed the edicts. Merely because a religious book contains a deity who commands a certain set of values that believers feel must be obeyed no matter how biased the decree, is a skewed reason to accept it as valid. The full meaning of the term human rights is explicitly contained within itself…namely the rights of humans. At the most fundamental level all people are humans and have ownership of their own being with its intrinsic value. The well-being of each individual shares a commonality requiring only a basic understanding of what it means to be human. In order to survive one ought to feed and take care of their body this is the only way one can continue to flourish.

It’s always good to take care of children and it is never good to cause them harm, yet this is exactly what one sees in the Bible. Any book that corrupts one’s thinking to such a degree as to make them believe a just punishment for a crime could involve the well being of a child being purposely compromised, should be classified as immoral literature. It is unconscionable to think that there could be any justice in afflicting a child with sickness and making them suffer in agony for days on end till they die. The consequences of such an action does nothing to promote the flourishing or well being, there is no value in the purposeful suffering and death of an innocent child.

 2Sam.12:13-17 And David said unto Nathan, I have sinned against the LORD. And Nathan said unto David, The LORD also hath put away thy sin; thou shalt not die. Howbeit, because by this deed thou hast given great occasion to the enemies of the LORD to blaspheme, the child also that is born unto thee shall surely die. And Nathan departed unto his house. And the LORD struck the child that Uriah’s wife bare unto David, and it was very sick. David therefore besought God for the child; and David fasted, and went in, and lay all night upon the earth. And the elders of his house arose, and went to him, to raise him up from the earth: but he would not, neither did he eat bread with them. And it came to pass on the seventh day, that the child died

  A common test for the existence of objective morality is the argument that “it is always wrong to torture a child for fun”…there is no sane person on the planet who would say otherwise, yet what we see in the above biblical verses is exactly that. On every count the above verses fail to promote the well being of the child and actively encourage its demise. The sickness that the child is purposely afflicted with for the sins of his father causes him to suffer for seven days till he ultimately dies because of it…this is on par with torturing a child for fun, with fun being the suffering which is arbitrarily desired by the afflicter, which in this case is Yahweh. What is so incredibly disturbing about passages like these is the fact that they are attributed to the deity who billions of people hold to be the merciful, moral law giver…this jealous god who says that the sins of the father shall be passed onto the children.

 Exo.20:5 Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me;

  Should not any intelligent, reasonable person begin to question the validity of their faith when they are compelled to justify an immoral act based solely on the whim of a deity? The first step is to acknowledge the corruptive influence of believing a text that goes against our innate moral intuitions and realizing it is destructive to coherent thought? To be put in a position of having to justify a universally held immoral action, decreed by a deity only serves to diminish the integrity of the individual doing the justifying and is not conducive to well being.  My hope is that people will open their minds to the idea of letting their judgments be based on the value of the well-being of sentient life, not on the teachings of an archaic religious text written by men who shaped and formed their god to fit with their primitive mindset still in its infancy.

 

 

Chapter 2

The Foundations of Sexism

 

The foundation for all the doctrines in the New Testament are built upon the roots of Judaism contained in the Old Testament. The manner of thought and the ideas that Jesus and Paul expressed were taken directly from the scrolls of the Torah and the Prophets, so if we want to truly understand the mindset behind what is written in the New Testament part of the Bible we must look to the Old. If we take the Bible as having historical value, then we see at a certain point in its history when the patriarchs entered the picture that the belief in a pantheon of gods gave way to the one god Yahweh…it was then that a giant step was taken in mans progress of understanding the oneness of the cosmos. Prior to this time peoples understanding of the cosmos was composed of a pantheon of created gods who were constantly warring with one another and with people, creating factions and shattering the unity of the whole. Then the concept of one god emerged who had no beginning, and no piers…the creation of the heavens and earth were solely attributed to him. Now, people could begin to think about God as one divine being – a united whole – instead of many divided fighting gods vying for power. With this new found god-unity the Hebrews could focus on a common purpose for mankind, that of serving one god who himself had no beginning and who was responsible for all that existed, the purpose of their lives and of governing the cosmos.

This understanding of the oneness of the cosmos came at a great cost…in perceiving the unity of one masculine god, the feminine goddess was stripped away leaving the whole impoverished and without balance. The cosmic dance of spirit/male and body/female was lost when goddess/matter was deemed fleshly and sinful, and god/spirit became masculine and holy. Little by little everything associated with the feminine was degraded and made impure, while the masculine was exalted and made holy.  The mother/goddess was no longer needed to bring forth life because the father/god could create life with his mere words, and the sensual qualities of the woman became something to be suppressed and hidden. With no goddess to balance the god, the whole became less then the half…for without the feminine, the anima in the male had no voice, or expression.

From the very beginnings of Judeo Christian history, everything and anything to do with the feminine/goddess began to be eroded away and destroyed. Starting with the story of Adam and Eve, it is clear to see where the loss of the sacred feminine started. Woman was made as an after thought from the man, when Adam could not find a mate from amongst all the animals. Then it was the woman who enticed the man to eat of the forbidden fruit of wisdom (ironically when Solomon asked for wisdom from Yahweh he was given it in great abundance), thus bringing down the curse upon herself and all mankind. The sensual feminine body was deemed bad, because it enticed the male to leave the worship of his masculine god (that was missing the goddess), causing him to go running after the sexual pleasure found in the woman. Creation yearns for balance, male/female, spirit/body, earth/heaven…duality yearns for marriage to become one. When the part cannot become united with the whole one feels cut off and separate from their origins, thus causing imbalance and lack of growth. It is time to give balance and harmony to our Christian roots by acknowledging its impoverished condition, caused by its patriarchal imbalance due to being stripped of the sacred feminine.

The whole of the earth has suffered because of this male/female imbalance. The biblical idea of a male warrior god which was brought forth from the minds of Bronze Age men, written by their hands, implementing rules favoring male dominance, and the suppression of the feminine has indeed exacerbated the imbalance of male/female to a large degree. This imbalance has greatly tipped the scales toward the more aggressive masculine qualities being manifested culturally, without the tempering affects of the feminine qualities of nurturing and comforting. This is why when one looks back through patriarchal history, the abundance of wars and aggressive dominance color the landscape.

Only by incorporating the sacred feminine (the missing half) into our worldview can we ever hope to return to a balanced condition and raise the consciousness level of humanity. As it stands now Christianity is frozen in the 1st century, because the Bible has locked the understanding of “God” to that which was received by the male apostles of the 1st century and the prophets before that. Without the freedom to go beyond a rigid perspective of “God” promoted by those who penned the Scriptures, Christians will be forever trapped in a cage made by those who at one point were enlightened for the time period in which they lived, but have since in many ways become archaic. Our minds need to be free to grow and expand with the wisdom that has been denied those locked in bondage to dogma; only with the restoration of the missing half of the sacred feminine can humanity walk in wholeness.

The mentality of Bronze Age men was one of viewing women as property, and this is precisely what one sees reflected in the pages of Scripture. Starting from the Bible’s very first pages the idea of male ruler-ship over women, promoted as a decree from its god Yahweh is obvious. This very same law of male authority is carried over into the New Testament and quoted by the Apostle Paul, where he tells women they are to be in submission to man, because Eve was the one first deceived by the serpent and in the transgression.

As the story goes, Yahweh planted a tree in the center of the paradisiacal garden and forbade Adam to eat from its fruit lest he die. Things were not so grand in this utopian garden at first, because of all the animals in the Garden (which Adam was told to name), Adam was the only one without a mate. To solve this problem, Yahweh decided to snatch one of Adams ribs while he was sleeping and form from it a woman whom he named Eve.  After that things go from bad to worse for the woman, not only does she get the whole human race convicted of sin, but she gets cursed with male ruler-ship.

  Gen.2:22 And the rib, which the LORD God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man.

 Gen.3:13 And the LORD God said unto the woman, What is this that thou hast done? And the woman said, The serpent beguiled me, and I did eat.

 One of the worst aspects of the faith that the Bible teaches is in promoting the idea that one group of people (men) have the god given right to deny the other group (women) the same freedom of human equality that they enjoy. To be able to live up to ones full potential as a human is a right that all people should share regardless of gender, or race. We all share this planet equally, and all should partake in its abundance, the male gender has not been given exclusive rights to ruler-ship over the female gender as biblical teaching promotes. Unfortunately, for the believer the baggage that the Bible carries with it can never be discarded, because it is built into its patriarchal structure, which begins with a sole male god as creator. Biblical doctrines originating in Genesis place the male as the leader, with ruler-ship over the female given as a foundational decree, declaring that “Woman was made for the man”; this doctrine is then reiterated in the New Testament.

Gen.3:16 Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee.

1Cor.11:9 Neither was the man created for the woman; but the woman for the man.

1Cor.11:3 But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God.

These teachings are fundamental to the biblical story, beginning with the original transgression (caused by Eve) which according to the Bible introduced sin into the human picture. Usually the more fundamental branches of Christianity adhere more strongly to the biblical teaching of the subjugation of women, which in many cases leads to women being denied their equal human rights. It’s quite ironic that it took laws specifically created by humans in our modern age, to give back to women what was taken from them by biblical rules supposedly from god.

In the New Testament the apostle Paul’s interpretation of the Garden story is used to justify the second class status of women, declaring that woman was the cause of the fall of humankind and that this was the reason she was placed under the headship of the man. There is no amount of justification that can erase what is clearly stated in Scripture, it remains forever locked into its pages.

1Tim.2:11-14 Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection. But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence. For Adam was first formed, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression.

It’s time to wake up and see the Bible for what it is…a book written by men, about a male god who decrees that women are to be denied equal human rights, because the first woman Eve (a myth created by men) was responsible for humankind’s fall into sin. And for that original transgression, all women are to be placed in subjugation to men and stripped of their equality. The Bible is a book about authority, obedience and ruler-ship…simple as that. The masculine warrior god Yahweh, rules over men and demands obedience while the men rule over the women with the authority given them by Yahweh (the god they created) and demand subjugation…that is the order of the kingdom of god, given us in the Bible with its main focus on…AUTHORITY, OBEDIENCE and RULER-SHIP.

In the story of the Garden, Adam and Eve’s innocence as to the knowing of “Good and Evil” is established by the fact that Yahweh forbid them to eat of the fruit of “the tree of the knowledge of good and evil” lest they die. Every other desire they had was supposedly granted fulfillment if they wished, there would have been no guilt for enjoying any pleasure imaginable within their framework of desire. Obviously one of the desires innate within Eve was for wisdom – knowledge – that is why the serpent could tempt her with the “fruit of knowledge”. The forbidden tree manifested all the innate desires already present within her such as “good for food”, “pleasant to the eyes”, and “wisdom”, which immediately evokes the question: Why would Yahweh place a desire for wisdom in Eve, if it was something innately bad?

Why create humans with a desire for something that will ultimately cause their demise?

Gen.3:4-6 And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die: For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil. And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.

The woman’s eyes were not yet “opened” when the serpent tempted her, but she still saw that the tree was desirable to make her wise, which again seems to imply that the desire for wisdom was innate within her…otherwise it would not have been there. Eve could not have known what wisdom was unless the knowledge of it was already present within her, and she could not have known “good” unless she also knew its counterpart “bad”. Yahweh himself introduced the first couple to the idea of “good” saying that every tree in the Garden was good for food…he even told Adam that it was not good (bad) for man to be alone, so the concepts of good and bad were not foreign to them, which is why it seems odd that Yahweh would forbid the knowledge of good and evil when they already were aware of its presence. This of course exposes once again that the stories contained in the Bible are no more than ideas from primitive male minds trying to make sense of the world around them by positing a god who gives them answers.

Another point to note concerning wisdom is that according to the Bible wisdom is something to be desired. It was the one quality that King Solomon asked for so he could discern between good and bad. Solomon requested this of God and it was granted him in abundance. This is of course is directly contradictory to the Garden story, where the woman’s desire for wisdom was what caused the fall of mankind into sin, which shows another example of the male bias inherent in Scripture…what is good for the male is not necessarily good for the female.

Gen.3:5 For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.

1Kings 3:9-12 Give therefore thy servant an understanding heart to judge thy people, that I may discern between good and bad: for who is able to judge this thy so great a people? And the speech pleased the Lord, that Solomon had asked this thing. And God said unto him, Because thou hast asked this thing, and hast not asked for thyself long life; neither hast asked riches for thyself, nor hast asked the life of thine enemies; but hast asked for thyself understanding to discern judgment; Behold, I have done according to thy words: lo, I have given thee a wise and an understanding heart; so that there was none like thee before thee, neither after thee shall any arise like unto thee.

Before leaving this chapter I would like to bring the readers attention to one last set of verses found in Genesis. This enigmatic passage brings to light not only more male bias, but also the mythological origins of the Bible. A common theme in many ancient myths is the idea of the gods mingling with mortal man…here we see that the focus is on the females as the mortals who produced the offspring that brought forth wickedness in abundance to earth. What we have is heavenly male divine beings mingling with earthly females to produce mighty men who imagined and carried out great wickedness, consequently Yahweh devises a plan to destroy the humans he has created.

Gen.6:1-4 And it came to pass, when men began to multiply on the face of the earth, and daughters were born unto them, That the sons of God saw the daughters of men that they were fair; and they took them wives of all which they chose. And the LORD said, My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also is flesh: yet his days shall be an hundred and twenty years. There were giants in the earth in those days; and also after that, when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bare children to them, the same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown. And GOD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.

 

Chapter 3

Women Considered Property of Men

 

In the Law of Moses, given by Yahweh a man may give his wife a bill of divorce if he is dissatisfied with her, but the same is NOT true if a wife finds dissatisfaction with her husband, she is bound to her husband for life since she is his property. The woman was purchased by the man from the woman’s father who owned her in the first place. There was no voice given to a woman who suffered abuse at the hands of her husband, because she had no say over her own life or body. This once again typifies the treatment of women in most patriarchal societies showing that the authors of the Bible and their god were no different. The nature of man perfectly matches the nature of god which can be seen in the Old Testament and carried over into the New Testament by the apostle Paul.

Deut. 24:1-2 When a man hath taken a wife, and married her, and it come to pass that she find no favour in his eyes, because he hath found some uncleanness in her: then let him write her a bill of divorcement, and give it in her hand, and send her out of his house. And when she is departed out of his house, she may go and be another man’s wife.

Rom.7:2 For the woman which hath an husband is bound by the law to her husband so long as he liveth; but if the husband be dead, she is loosed from the law of her husband.

1Cor.7:39 The wife is bound by the law as long as her husband liveth; but if her husband be dead, she is at liberty to be married to whom she will; only in the Lord.

Once again, as I have pointed out there is a double standard prevalent throughout the entire Bible with issues pertaining to women.

  1. Men could choose their wives/ women were sold to men for wives.
  2. Men could have multiple wives and concubines/ women could have one husband.
  3. Men could divorce their wives at will/ women were bound to their husbands for as long as their husbands lived.
  4. Men could marry virgins they raped/ women were sold to their abusers.

In the Bible women were considered property, which gave the man the right to buy and sell them at will. This once again confirms the fact that the “God-given” hierarchical order of the Bible is one of inequality, and bias creating a system that favors one gender over the other, thus establishing an imbalance found nowhere else in the natural animal-kingdom. The only place in all of the animal-kingdom that male suppression and oppression of the female is found is in the human species where the male dominates and subjugates the female, keeping her from realizing her full potential. The Bible actually establishes this domination of women as a “god-given” rule of the hierarchical order of the Hebrew society, proving the innate inequality, imbalance, and bias of that system.

The Bible says that its god anointed David to be king over Israel by delivering King Saul into his hands, in doing so he also gave unto David, Saul’s house and his wives. Apparently, David was not satisfied with the Lords gifts and desired the beautiful wife of Uriah who was a captain in David’s army. David sent Uriah out into the front lines assuring his death, and then took his wife Bathsheba and committed adultery with her. Well, this did not set well with Yahweh, so as punishment the Lord told David he was going to take the wives of Saul that he had previously given him and give them to his neighbor to rape.

2Sam.12:7-11 And Nathan said to David, Thou art the man. Thus saith the LORD God of Israel, I anointed thee king over Israel, and I delivered thee out of the hand of Saul; And I gave thee thy master’s house, and thy master’s wives into thy bosom, and gave thee the house of Israel and of Judah; and if that had been too little, I would moreover have given unto thee such and such things. Wherefore hast thou despised the commandment of the LORD, to do evil in his sight? thou hast killed Uriah the Hittite with the sword, and hast taken his wife to be thy wife, and hast slain him with the sword of the children of Ammon. Now therefore the sword shall never depart from thine house; because thou hast despised me, and hast taken the wife of Uriah the Hittite to be thy wife. Thus saith the LORD, Behold, I will raise up evil against thee out of thine own house, and I will take thy wives before thine eyes, and give them unto thy neighbour, and he shall lie with thy wives in the sight of this sun.

Talk about women being used as property, this passage takes the cake, those poor women were passed around like party treats. Not only did Yahweh consider Saul’s wives as “war booty” to be given to David, but then the same wives were used a second time by giving them to David’s neighbor to rape as punishment for his sins…yikes!

If that is not bad enough the revelation of just who David’s neighbor was will stun you…it was none other than his very own son Absalom!

2 Sam.16:21-22 And Ahithophel said unto Absalom, Go in unto thy father’s concubines, which he hath left to keep the house; and all Israel shall hear that thou art abhorred of thy father: then shall the hands of all that are with thee be strong. So they spread Absalom a tent upon the top of the house; and Absalom went in unto his father’s concubines in the sight of all Israel.

So, not only does Yahweh cause Absalom to break the seventh commandment by committing adultery, but he also causes him to break the law of sleeping with your fathers wife, not to mention rape…triple yikes!

Lev.18:8 The nakedness of thy father’s wife shalt thou not uncover: it is thy father’s nakedness.

Not only does this story exemplify the use of women as property and pawns to be used at will, but it also reiterates the extreme male-bias of the Bible and the fact that its god is indeed a respecter of persons. Not only was David exonerated from receiving the death penalty for causing the death of Uriah, and committing adultery, but his first born son by Bathsheba bore the punishment in his place by being stricken with a sickness and dying after seven days of suffering. This truly reveals the vengeful and immoral nature of god, which only exemplifies his human qualities.

2Sam.12:13-17 And David said unto Nathan, I have sinned against the LORD. And Nathan said unto David, The LORD also hath put away thy sin; thou shalt not die. Howbeit, because by this deed thou hast given great occasion to the enemies of the LORD to blaspheme, the child also that is born unto thee shall surely die. And Nathan departed unto his house. And the LORD struck the child that Uriah’s wife bare unto David, and it was very sick. David therefore besought God for the child; and David fasted, and went in, and lay all night upon the earth. And the elders of his house arose, and went to him, to raise him up from the earth: but he would not, neither did he eat bread with them. And it came to pass on the seventh day, that the child died

This striking down of David’s son is not only immoral, but violates the commandment given by god that says the sins of the father shall not be passed down upon the son.

Ezek.18:20 The soul that sinneth, it shall die. The son shall not bear the iniquity of the father, neither shall the father bear the iniquity of the son: the righteousness of the righteous shall be upon him, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon him.

 

Judah and Tamar

The story of Judah and Tamar is another example of the extreme male bias contained in the Bible. After Judah’s son is slain by God for spilling his seed on the ground, his wife Tamar is promised by Judah according to the law to marry his other son Shelah when he comes of age. So, Tamar goes to reside in her father in-laws (Judah’s) house until she can be wed. In the process of time Judah’s wife dies, so he goes up to a friend’s house to stay and be comforted. Meanwhile Tamar sees that Judah’s son Shelah is grown and she is not given to him to wed as promised, so she takes matters into her own hands; sheds her widow’s garments and goes to find Judah. On her journey to find Judah she sits herself by the road wrapped in a veil near the place where she knows Judah to be and waits for him. In time Judah walks by, but he does not recognize her because of her veil; taking her for a harlot he requests to come in unto her.  She concedes under the conditions that he promises her a goat which he pledges he will by giving her his ring, bracelet and staff in earnest; then he goes into her and she conceives…Tamar leaves and again puts on her widows garments. A short while later Judah tries to find the harlot to make good on the goat he promised to give her, but she is nowhere to be found. Three months down road word gets back to Judah that the harlot he is looking for is none other than Tamar his daughter in-law and she is with child by her whoredom. In his fury, Judah demands that she be burnt for her crime of harlotry! When Tamar is brought before Judah he demands to know whose child she is carrying…she brings forth the items that were pledged, a ring, bracelet and staff. She then asks Judah to discern who these items belong to? Immediately Judah recognizes the ring, bracelet and staff as his own, thus he repents to her and says that she is more righteous than him, because he did not keep his promise to her in the marriage of his son Shelah.

Gen.38:11-26 Then said Judah to Tamar his daughter in law, Remain a widow at thy father’s house, till Shelah my son be grown: for he said, Lest peradventure he die also, as his brethren did. And Tamar went and dwelt in her father’s house. And in process of time the daughter of Shuah Judah’s wife died; and Judah was comforted, and went up unto his sheepshearers to Timnath, he and his friend Hirah the Adullamite. And it was told Tamar, saying, Behold thy father in law goeth up to Timnath to shear his sheep. And she put her widow’s garments off from her, and covered her with a vail, and wrapped herself, and sat in an open place, which is by the way to Timnath; for she saw that Shelah was grown, and she was not given unto him to wife. When Judah saw her, he thought her to be an harlot; because she had covered her face. And he turned unto her by the way, and said, Go to, I pray thee, let me come in unto thee; (for he knew not that she was his daughter in law.) And she said, What wilt thou give me, that thou mayest come in unto me? And he said, I will send thee a kid from the flock. And she said, Wilt thou give me a pledge, till thou send it? And he said, What pledge shall I give thee? And she said, Thy signet, and thy bracelets, and thy staff that is in thine hand. And he gave it her, and came in unto her, and she conceived by him. And she arose, and went away, and laid by her vail from her, and put on the garments of her widowhood. And Judah sent the kid by the hand of his friend the Adullamite, to receive his pledge from the woman’s hand: but he found her not. Then he asked the men of that place, saying, Where is the harlot, that was openly by the way side? And they said, There was no harlot in this place. And he returned to Judah, and said, I cannot find her; and also the men of the place said, that there was no harlot in this place. And Judah said, Let her take it to her, lest we be shamed: behold, I sent this kid, and thou hast not found her. And it came to pass about three months after, that it was told Judah, saying, Tamar thy daughter in law hath played the harlot; and also, behold, she is with child by whoredom. And Judah said, Bring her forth, and let her be burnt.When she was brought forth, she sent to her father in law, saying, By the man, whose these are, am I with child: and she said, Discern, I pray thee, whose are these, the signet, and bracelets, and staff. And Judah acknowledged them, and said, She hath been more righteous than I; because that I gave her not to Shelah my son. And he knew her again no more.

The important point I would like to focus on in this story is the double standard we see throughout Scripture, what is a capital offense for a woman doesn’t even warrant a reprimand from God for a man. Over, and over again women are treated as nothing more than a mans property, and this is promoted as the will of Yahweh. If one views the Bible as a compilation of the ideas of men then it’s not so surprising to find male bias as a prominent theme, but if it is held to be the word of god problems become plentiful, because then the reader is given no choice but to conclude that the Biblegod intentionally planned for women to be abused by men and treated unequally. An all knowing god would have absolutely known the outcome of his decrees and would have had complete power to manipulate them in anyway whatsoever he chose, that is why it is inconceivable to believe that the god portrayed in the pages of the Bible is anything other than the fabrication of men who patterned him after themselves.

It is incomprehensible to imagine that a deity capable of creating the universe would involve himself in arbitrary and petty matters such as is found in the Bible. The untold suffering that has been caused by the skewed male bias of the Bible, imposed on women as being the authoritative divine word of god must be confronted and exposed. For far to long women have suffered in silence believing what that have been told by men, instead of using their own intelligence and realizing how illogical it would be for a truly loving god to give a male based book directed at and completely focused on men, to women. The supposed god who created both male and female would know that the women he made are not the same as men and thus should have a book that is female based and directed at and focused on women. If it talks like a male, and thinks like a male it probably is a male. Another thing to keep in mind when thinking about an omnipotent divine being, is realizing that he knows the consequences that every decree and edict will cause. A good case of a single biblical verse being the cause of tremendous suffering and death is found in Exodus.

Exo. 22:18 Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live.

This solitary verse, consisting of eight words in English, was the cause of the deaths and torture of hundreds of thousands (perhaps millions) of women at the hands of men when they were accused of being witches. A true, all knowing, loving god would have never allowed such a verse to remain in a book containing his laws knowing full well the immense, needless suffering it would cause.


Chapter 4

Sex Slaves and Concubines

 

No matter what ones take on the Bible is, whether it be the inspired Word of God, or an historical account of men’s ideas about god, an undeniable fact remains that the Bible promotes sexual violence against women and the trafficking of women for sex. I have listed a handful of verses below to show the extreme abuse that women have endured at the hands of men, condoned and promoted in the pages of the Bible, without a single reprimand recorded against such barbarism. In each of the passages I have listed, men have inflicted sexual violence against women and in each of the cases there is not so much as one word of condemnation written against their horrendous deeds…in fact quite the opposite is true – there are laws written in the Bible to accommodate such behavior!

It is time women and men alike raise their voices denouncing this sexual violence targeted specifically at the female gender. These passages that I have listed are just a few amongst the many contained in the Old Testament part of the Bible, and for the most part are ignored by faithful believers, but what does that say about peoples moral values? The Old Testament contains the whole of the biblical writings of Judaism, and over half of the Christian Bible that Jesus said not one “jot” or “tittle” would pass away from. How can it be that all one hears is silence from the religious communities that hold these texts to be God’s moral laws? This is an issue that needs to be dealt with and it’s time the voices of those who care about human rights be heard. Sexual violence in never okay, even when it’s promoted in a book considered by millions to be the word of god…it’s always WRONG, Wrong, wrong!

 

The Daughters of Righteous Lot

The account listed below is found in the book of Genesis, it perfectly depicts the status of women as property. The first story takes place in the infamous city of Sodom where Lot, the nephew of Abraham is residing. Lot is entertaining two “messengers” in his home; the men of the city begin to bang on his door demanding that he send out the “messengers”, so that they can sodomize them. Lot pleads with them not to harm the “messengers” that are abiding under his roof, so he offers instead for these wild men to take his two daughters and do with them as they see right. If you have not already fallen off your seat I don’t understand why not. Can any human being with a conscience imagine offering ones own daughters to wild men to be raped in lieu of giving them the men they asked for? And to make matters worse, Lot was not reprimanded by God for his egregious actions, in fact he was lauded as a righteous and godly man by the apostle Peter in the New Testament, but we already know the reason for that…women were considered no more than a mans property, whereas the value of a man was not that of property, but rather of his honor… apparently their god, Yahweh felt the same way.

Gen.19:4-8 But before they lay down, the men of the city, even the men of Sodom, compassed the house round, both old and young, all the people from every quarter: And they called unto Lot, and said unto him, Where are the men which came in to thee this night? Bring them out unto us, that we may know them. And Lot went out at the door unto them, and shut the door after him, And said, I pray you, brethren, do not so wickedly. Behold now, I have two daughters which have not known man; let me, I pray you, bring them out unto you, and do ye to them as is good in your eyes: only unto these men do nothing; for therefore came they under the shadow of my roof.

Another blatant act of Yahweh treating women as being expendable property happens a little later on in the story where we find that Lot’s wife being turned into a pillar of salt for looking back on the burning city of Sodom…a slight overkill wouldn’t you say, especially when Lot was not even given a slap on the wrist for offering his daughters to be raped…ah, but then Lot’s wife was just a woman. Even Jesus speaks disparagingly of Lots wife in Luke 17, where he admonishes the people to “remember Lot’s wife” when they think about what happened at Sodom, but nary a word is mentioned about the atrocious behavior of Lot when he offered his daughters up to be raped. To make matters worse in the epistle of Peter, Lot is called righteous not once, not twice, but three times in the space of three verses along with the term “godly” being inserted.  It seems the standards of righteousness and godliness for biblical writers was far different than what would be considered righteous in today’s society.

Gen.19:26 But his wife looked back from behind him, and she became a pillar of salt.

Luke 17: 31-32 In that day, he which shall be upon the housetop, and his stuff in the house, let him not come down to take it away: and he that is in the field, let him likewise not return back. Remember Lot’s wife.

2Peter 2:6-9 And turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrha into ashes condemned them with an overthrow, making them an example unto those that after should live ungodly; And delivered just Lot, vexed with the filthy conversation of the wicked: (For that righteous man dwelling among them, in seeing and hearing, vexed his righteous soul from day to day with their unlawful deeds;) The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations, and to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to be punished:

Lastly we read that Lot committed incest with his daughters, so if there is any question left concerning Lot’s unrighteous behavior it should be settled once and for all.

Gen.19:36 Thus were both the daughters of Lot with child by their father.

All it would have taken was for someone like Jesus, Paul, or Peter to stand up for women’s equality by condemning the atrocious behavior of Lot, instead of calling him righteous. Because men dominate most societies historically, and are the perpetrators of violence against women, it is incumbent upon them to stand up for human rights and condemn those who abuse them.

 

Take my Concubine

Throughout the Old Testament men were allowed under the law to have as many wives and concubines as they desired, the most famous case being that of King Solomon who had seven hundred wives and three hundred concubines by the biblical account. Of course most men could not afford to have so many wives and concubines, but nonetheless it was still legal for them to do so.

1King 11:3 And he had seven hundred wives, princesses, and three hundred concubines: and his wives turned away his heart.

I consider the following account of abuse to be the most horrendous in the entire Bible, and if it doesn’t make you scream at the top of your lungs MALE BIAS, I fear there is no hope anything will.

This story begins with a man who has taken a male guest into his house. Shortly thereafter a group of men begin banging on his door demanding the householder send out his male guest so that they may sodomize him. The householder pleads with the men to not abuse his male guest, but instead to take either his daughter or his concubine and do with them as they see fit instead. Where this case differs from the previous one in Sodom is that the master of the house actually does give his concubine over to the men who repeatedly rape and abuse the woman all night long till morning when they finally let her go. This poor woman barely has enough strength to crawl up to the door of her master’s house where she dies on his steps. Her master then proceeds to cut his dead concubine into twelve pieces and sends her body parts to all the coasts of Israel.

Judges 19:22-29 Now as they were making their hearts merry, behold, the men of the city, certain sons of Belial, beset the house round about, and beat at the door, and spake to the master of the house, the old man, saying, Bring forth the man that came into thine house, that we may know him. And the man, the master of the house, went out unto them, and said unto them, Nay, my brethren, nay, I pray you, do not so wickedly; seeing that this man is come into mine house, do not this folly. Behold, here is my daughter a maiden, and his concubine; them I will bring out now, and humble ye them, and do with them what seemeth good unto you: but unto this man do not so vile a thing. But the men would not hearken to him: so the man took his concubine, and brought her forth unto them; and they knew her, and abused her all the night until the morning: and when the day began to spring, they let her go. Then came the woman in the dawning of the day, and fell down at the door of the man’s house where her lord was, till it was light. And her lord rose up in the morning, and opened the doors of the house, and went out to go his way: and, behold, the woman his concubine was fallen down at the door of the house, and her hands were upon the threshold. And he said unto her, Up, and let us be going. But none answered. Then the man took her up upon an ass, and the man rose up, and gat him unto his place. And when he was come into his house, he took a knife, and laid hold on his concubine, and divided her, together with her bones, into twelve pieces, and sent her into all the coasts of Israel.

This story is so despicable, horrendous, and revolting it should make anyone who reads it want to puke, but do we read one word of rebuke for the actions of the householder? NO! And why not? Because women were considered property and a man could do with them as he wished…this idea is in keeping with the laws given by the biblical god Yahweh. According to the god presented in the Bible, a man’s worth was of a much greater value then that of a woman. That is why we see in the two cases where men had the choice of either giving over their male guests to be sodomized or giving over their women, the choice is always to give the woman, because handing over the man would have been dishonorable.

 

Keep Whom you Desire

Once again the ring of male bias sounds loud and clear, this time in the fifth book of the Torah. As I have shown with clarity over and over again the male mindset that is attributed to the masculine warrior god, Yahweh…such is the case again with the verses below. When the Hebrew’s are directed by Yahweh to go to war against their enemies, he will deliver into their hands captives, and if the soldiers desire any of the beautiful virgin women they are instructed by Yahweh to take those women for themselves.  Of course first there are some rules these lustful soldiers must abide by and that is making the captive woman shave her head and trim her fingernails, also he must allow her to “bewail” her mother and father (whom the soldiers have killed) for a full month…only then can he go in and “humble” her (the Hebrew word is anah, which means to force himself upon her). Now, if after he has raped her, he finds no “delight” in her he may rid himself of her, with one restriction…he is not allowed to sell her for profit.

Deuteronomy 21:10-14 When thou goest forth to war against thine enemies, and the LORD thy God hath delivered them into thine hands, and thou hast taken them captive, And seest among the captives a beautiful woman, and hast a desire unto her, that thou wouldest have her to thy wife; Then thou shalt bring her home to thine house; and she shall shave her head, and pare her nails; And she shall put the raiment of her captivity from off her, and shall remain in thine house, and bewail her father and her mother a full month: and after that thou shalt go in unto her, and be her husband, and she shall be thy wife. And it shall be, if thou have no delight in her, then thou shalt let her go whither she will; but thou shalt not sell her at all for money, thou shalt not make merchandise of her, because thou hast humbled her.

First off, what business is it of Yahweh to be involved in the sex trade of women and catering to the wanton lusts of men who are willing to slaughter mothers and fathers in order to take their virgin daughters? It is one of the most disgusting things I can think of, but it is very telling of where these ideas actually came from. Men naturally lust after beautiful women and it is common knowledge that especially during times of war, soldiers capture and rape women; many times with little or no consequences. It is a far different thing though when the raping of women is actually initiated and sanctioned by the deity who is claimed to be the creator of the universe! Which of course directly reveals that this god of the Bible, named Yahweh is a construct created from the minds of men and whose actions are directly in keeping with the lustful desires of men. Whether it be attacking other tribes to take their women, or their property it ultimately comes down to common traits that are displayed in the aggressive warrior mentality of men. To think that Christians of today see no problem in their god allowing women to be auctioned off like livestock to men who lust after them, it is one of the most degrading actions I can think of…certainly not something I would want my children taught in Sunday school. What we need to remember is that the Old Testament was the collection of scrolls that Jesus referred to as the Law of Moses and the Prophets which he held to be inspired words of his father god.

 

Daughters of Shiloh

I hope I am not beginning to sound like a broken record, but here we go again with Yahweh commanding the Hebrew’s to slaughter all the men and women in a city called Jabesh-Gilead, EXCEPT the virgins for the sole purpose of furnishing the men with wives. In this case the ONLY reason for utterly destroying the inhabitants of Jabesh-Gilead was because the Benjamites needed wives. The reason the Benjamites needed wives is because all of their tribe had been killed by the other Hebrew tribes in a previous conflict, except for 600 men who hid in the mountains, thus escaping death. Also, earlier in the story the Bible tells us that all the tribes of Israel had sworn to not give of their daughters to the tribe of Benjamin for wives because they had cut off the tribe of Benjamin, so the only tribal members who had not sworn the oath were the inhabitants of Jabesh-Gilead…and guess what? They got chosen to be the ones to furnish the Benjamites with wives at the expense of their own lives.

But, a problem arises when only 400 virgins are captured at the slaughter of Jabesh-Gilead, and the Benjamites needed 600 women for wives, so then they were commanded to go kidnap 200 more virgins from Shiloh; all of this of course was under direct command from Yahweh. I’m not sure why at first it’s said that they can only take wives from Jabesh-Gilead because they had not sworn an oath, but then when they didn’t have enough it was okay to take virgins from another place called Shiloh? I guess it’s just another biblical inconsistency.

Judge 21:10-12 And the congregation sent thither twelve thousand men of the valiantest, and commanded them, saying, Go and smite the inhabitants of Jabeshgilead with the edge of the sword, with the women and the children. And this is the thing that ye shall do, Ye shall utterly destroy every male, and every woman that hath lain by man. And they found among the inhabitants of Jabesh-Gilead four hundred young virgins, that had known no man by lying with any male: and they brought them unto the camp to Shiloh, which is in the land of Canaan…..14) And Benjamin came again at that time; and they gave them wives which they had saved alive of the women of Jabesh-Gilead: and yet so they sufficed them not….20) Therefore they commanded the children of Benjamin, saying, Go and lie in wait in the vineyards; And see, and, behold, if the daughters of Shiloh come out to dance in dances, then come ye out of the vineyards, and catch (chataph) you every man his wife of the daughters of Shiloh, and go to the land of Benjamin.

This story is a perfect example of how men in biblical times saw nothing wrong with taking the women they wanted, because women were considered property! No mention is ever made of women’s rights, only the fact that if men wanted women they were free to take them by any means necessary (with Yahweh’s approval) which included killing off whole cities to take their virgin women. If nothing else, these stories show the Bible to be a perfect reflection of how men viewed women in ancient cultures, including of course the teachings of Paul in the New Testament, which sadly continues in many fundamentalist churches into modern times.

 

Keep the Virgins Alive for Yourselves

The verses below highlight the fact that the Israelites under “God’s” command, were doing exactly what their pagan neighbors did. When a battle was fought and war “booty” was taken, the virgin women were counted as part of that “booty” to be divided up amongst the men along with the livestock. This horrendous behavior can be compared to modern day sex trafficking only worse because not only were the girls taken as sex slaves but their families were slaughtered in the process.

Numbers 31:15-18 And Moses said unto them, Have ye saved all the women alive? Behold, these caused the children of Israel, through the counsel of Balaam, to commit trespass against the LORD in the matter of Peor, and there was a plague among the congregation of the LORD. Now therefore kill every male among the little ones, and kill every woman that hath known man by lying with him. But all the women children, that have not known a man by lying with him, keep alive for yourselves.

Numbers 31:30-31 & 35 And of the children of Israel’s half, thou shalt take one portion of fifty, of the persons, of the cattle, of the asses, and of the flocks, of all manner of beasts, and give them unto the Levites, which keep the charge of the tabernacle of the LORD. And Moses and Eleazar the priest did as the LORD commanded Moses…..And thirty and two thousand persons in all, of women that had not known man by lying with him.

Does anyone not see the picture these verses are painting? The supposed hierarchical order given to the Hebrews by their warrior god, Yahweh is no different from any of the other patriarchal societies – perhaps worse. So, what makes a Christian today believe that this god of the Bible who bases his hierarchical order solely on gender is valid, and not the mythical imaginings of ancient minds? Why is it that the horrendous immoral actions found throughout the Old Testament to a large degree are overlooked while its god whom Jesus endorsed still remains viable?

As hard as I try I can come to no solid reason as to why sexual violence against women is not condemned in Scripture except that those who wrote the Bible did not view those deeds as human rights violations, but then what does that say about biblical morality? At the very least one would think that the many explicit sexual violations against women contained in the Bible should be exposed as examples of man’s wickedness instead of promoted as commands from Yahweh. So, the question remains unanswered as to why the sexual violation of women in the Bible is not condemned? Biblical morality is either right or wrong; it doesn’t change with the times. If it is immoral today to sexually violate a woman, then it was immoral three thousand years ago to sexually violate a woman. Women are humans and have rights over their own bodies just like men do, they are not the property of men as the Bible promotes. It’s time to speak up and condemn human rights violations wherever they are found, even in the “Word of God”!

 

Male Bias of Slavery

Gender bias is rampant in all areas of male/female relationships in the Bible; it even spills over into the differences in the treatment of male and female Hebrew slaves. If a male Hebrew slave is purchased, the slave owner is required by law to release the slave in the seventh year after purchase. If the slaves master has given him a wife and he has children by that wife then when he is set free his wife and children must remain behind because they are the property of the slave holder. Apparently the female Hebrew slave is not granted the same rights of freedom in the seventh year as her male husband is. Once again, showing clear evidence of bias based solely on gender.

Exo.21:2-4 If thou buy an Hebrew servant, six years he shall serve: and in the seventh he shall go out free for nothing. If he came in by himself, he shall go out by himself: if he were married, then his wife shall go out with him. If his master have given him a wife, and she have born him sons or daughters; the wife and her children shall be her master’s, and he shall go out by himself.

Daughters Sold to be Concubines

In Hebrew society, which was governed by the laws given by their god Yahweh, a father was allowed to sell his daughter to a master be his slave/concubine. According to the law if the daughter that was sold as a slave/concubine did not please her master, he was required to let her be redeemed. The master was not allowed to sell her, because he has sexually used her, thus making her undesirable for any other man, which shows that the only value a woman had was her virginity. If the master has given the woman he bought to his son for a wife, then he was required to treat her as he would a daughter-in-law, lastly if he takes another woman to wife he is still obligated to treat his slave/concubine equally. The master must follow these rules or he is required to let his slave/concubine go free, because her worth has been diminished.

Exo.21:7-11 And if a man sell his daughter to be a maidservant, she shall not go out as the menservants do. If she please not her master, who hath betrothed her to himself, then shall he let her be redeemed: to sell her unto a strange nation he shall have no power, seeing he hath dealt deceitfully with her. And if he have betrothed her unto his son, he shall deal with her after the manner of daughters. If he take him another wife; her food, her raiment, and her duty of marriage, shall he not diminish. And if he do not these three unto her, then shall she go out free without money.

Yet again the male bias of the Hebrew god Yahweh is blatantly obvious. Fathers were allowed under the law given by Yahweh to sell their daughters to become the sex slaves of a master; whereas the same was not the case for sons. A male could sell himself into servitude, but was not considered the property of the father as a female was. This was permitted because women were considered to be owned by either their fathers or husbands under the laws given by the god of the Bible. The only time a woman was ever considered free was if she was discarded by a man who had “humbled” her, or she was widowed. A woman’s value lay in her sexual purity, her virginity; whereas a man’s value lay in his attributes such as being a good warrior, or a good hunter, a man was free to choose a wife or concubine, a woman was not.

A parent’s job is to raise and teach their children until they reach an age when they are mature enough and can take care of themselves. Never should parents control decisions on when their children marry or have offspring (this is something that should only be decided when the child is old enough to make their own choices), but this is exactly what the Bible teaches as being the will of Yahweh. Because a daughter is considered the property of her father he is the one who determines whom he will sell his daughter to, thus also making the choice of when she will have children since contraceptives were not an option. The desires and will of the female child did not exist in biblical times. The idea of making money off your children is a disgusting thought to the modern mind, so why would a god approve of such actions let alone promote them? Having a “bride price” is a primitive custom (many backward countries still practice those archaic traditions) which keeps men in control of women; the reason this tradition is supported and promoted in the Bible is because men are the ones who created the Bible-god. Child marriage is a violation of a child’s human rights and also poses a higher risk for pregnancy complications since a young girl’s body is not fully developed. The question that one must ask, is it ever a better decision for a girl to be married off and have children then to wait and make her own choice at maturity? Apparently the biblical god thinks so. Girls between the ages of 15 and 19 have a far higher rate of maternal mortality and child mortality, or having complications that lead to serious health problems, this in and of itself is enough to condemn the idea of child marriage. A decision like marriage and having children should always be made by the individual involved at a time when they are mature enough to make such decisions and never should they be made by another.

Chapter 5

Bias Based on Gender

To make the statement that the god of the Bible is a just and righteous god, it must be shown that he is not biased, but perfect in all his judgments. This is the premise by which I can disprove the “Just” nature of the Biblegod. To disprove a theory one needs only to find a single observation that disagrees with the predictions of the theory, and in this case I have found many more than one.

I have shown how the god described within the pages of the Bible is not only unjust, but also biased. If my argument is valid then the Biblegod cannot be a true creator god because he is not perfect in all his ways. My proof begins with the biblical description of the equality of the male and female who were created by its god. Not only are the male and female created equally in the image of God, but they are also created equally in the manner of flesh and bone.

Gen.1:27 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.

Gen.2:23 And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.

If male and female are created spiritually, and fleshly equal, then any judgment they receive should be based on individual merit and not gender. Yet, over and over again throughout the pages of the Bible it is noted that judgments are meted out based solely on gender. I would like to present a specific case from the book of Leviticus. In reading through the listed verses it immediately becomes apparent that the sole fact of gender is what determines the length of time for uncleanness and purification after childbirth, and this was a specific command from God. The passage in Leviticus deals with childbirth and how many days a woman is unclean after giving birth to a male child, and a female child. When a male child is born the woman is considered unclean for 7 days, and then another 33 days for purification is required, BUT when a woman bears a female child she is unclean for double the time (14 days), then another doubled time (66 days) is added for purification on top of the first. And all because one baby is a male and one is a female, now if that is not bias based solely on gender I don’t know what is!

Lev.12:1-5 And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, Speak unto the children of Israel, saying, If a woman have conceived seed, and born a man child: then she shall be unclean seven days (7 days); according to the days of the separation for her infirmity shall she be unclean. And in the eighth day the flesh of his foreskin shall be circumcised. And she shall then continue in the blood of her purifying three and thirty days (33 days); she shall touch no hallowed thing, nor come into the sanctuary, until the days of her purifying be fulfilled. But if she bear a maid child, then she shall be unclean two weeks (14 days), as in her separation: and she shall continue in the blood of her purifying threescore and six days (66 days).

Everyone knows that there is absolutely NO difference in giving birth to a male child verses giving birth to a female child. If because of religious traditions a woman is in need of purification after giving birth to a child, the same exact method would be applicable regardless of the gender of her baby. In the Levitical verses not only is the mother unclean twice as long after giving birth to a female child, but also must undergo a purification period that is twice as long. This is clearly a case of bias based solely on gender. In the New Testament gospel of Luke, Mary the mother of Jesus had to go through her purification according to the Law and because Jesus was a male her time would have been a total of forty days instead of eighty if she had a daughter. Also, because Jesus was a male and Mary’s firstborn he would have been automatically considered holy under the law of the Lord.

Luke 2:22-23 And when the days of her purification according to the law of Moses were accomplished, they brought him to Jerusalem, to present him to the Lord; (As it is written in the law of the Lord, Every male that openeth the womb shall be called holy to the Lord;)

Num.3:13 Because all the firstborn are mine; for on the day that I smote all the firstborn in the land of Egypt I hallowed (holy) unto me all the firstborn (males) in Israel, both man and beast: mine shall they be: I am the LORD.

Without the need to list any more verses (of which there are many) our requirement has been met in finding a single observation that disagrees with the theory of the “Unbiased Nature of God”, thus showing that the God of the Bible is unjust, and therefore not perfect. This directly leads to my conclusion that the god described in the Bible is made up from the minds of men who are indeed biased.

  1. The Biblegod is said to be just and perfect.
  2. The Biblegod is biased.
  3. Therefore the Biblegod is not perfect.

An important question that must be asked is,  if both male and female Homo sapiens are human, how can gender determine human rights? Yet, this is what one sees over and over again in the Bible, where gender determines a person’s human rights.

One of the most common forms of bias found throughout the Bible is that of the importance of virginity applying only to the female. The verses below lay out the procedure that is followed if a man takes a wife who is not a virgin … she is to be stoned to death on the doorsteps of her fathers house. This act of stoning a woman to death because she is not a virgin does not apply to men, which is in and of itself an extreme form of bias. For every woman that loses her virginity there is a man who has lost his, but in patriarchal religions a man’s virginity is of no consequence.

Deut.22:13-21 If any man take a wife, and go in unto her, and hate her, And give occasions of speech against her, and bring up an evil name upon her, and say, I took this woman, and when I came to her, I found her not a maid: Then shall the father of the damsel, and her mother, take and bring forth the tokens of the damsel’s virginity unto the elders of the city in the gate: And the damsel’s father shall say unto the elders, I gave my daughter unto this man to wife, and he hateth her; And, lo, he hath given occasions of speech against her, saying, I found not thy daughter a maid; and yet these are the tokens of my daughter’s virginity. And they shall spread the cloth before the elders of the city. And the elders of that city shall take that man and chastise him; And they shall amerce him in an hundred shekels of silver, and give them unto the father of the damsel, because he hath brought up an evil name upon a virgin of Israel: and she shall be his wife; he may not put her away all his days. But if this thing be true, and the tokens of virginity be not found for the damsel: Then they shall bring out the damsel to the door of her father’s house, and the men of her city shall stone her with stones that she die: because she hath wrought folly in Israel, to play the whore in her father’s house: so shalt thou put evil away from among you.

Jealousy

Continuing on with the theme of Male Bias in the Bible, I’ll now turn to the book of Numbers. Scripture states that the Lord told Moses that if a man becomes jealous, because he thinks his wife might be having an adulterous affair, but has no evidence or witnesses to support his suspicions “only that the spirit of jealousy has come upon him”.  The man is then instructed to take his wife to the priest who goes through an elaborate ritual of scraping dirt off the floor of the Tabernacle in front of the altar, and mixing it with “holy water” forcing the woman to drink it. If the woman becomes ill she is assumed guilty and cursed, whereas if she does not become ill she is free.

Let me first point out there is NO equivalent law pertaining to a woman if she becomes jealous and thinks her husband is having an adulterous affair. Why? The answer to that should be more than clear by now…because a woman is considered a man’s property.

Num. 5:11-19 And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, If any man’s wife go aside, and commit a trespass against him, And a man lie with her carnally, and it be hid from the eyes of her husband, and be kept close, and she be defiled, and there be no witness against her, neither she be taken with the manner; And the spirit of jealousy come upon him, and he be jealous of his wife, and she be defiled: or if the spirit of jealousy come upon him, and he be jealous of his wife, and she be not defiled: Then shall the man bring his wife unto the priest, and he shall bring her offering for her, the tenth part of an ephah of barley meal; he shall pour no oil upon it, nor put frankincense thereon; for it is an offering of jealousy, an offering of memorial, bringing iniquity to remembrance. And the priest shall bring her near, and set her before the LORD: And the priest shall take holy water in an earthen vessel; and of the dust that is in the floor of the tabernacle the priest shall take, and put it into the water: And the priest shall set the woman before the LORD, and uncover the woman’s head, and put the offering of memorial in her hands, which is the jealousy offering: and the priest shall have in his hand the bitter water that causeth the curse: And the priest shall charge her by an oath, and say unto the woman, If no man have lain with thee, and if thou hast not gone aside to uncleanness with another instead of thy husband, be thou free from this bitter water that causeth the curse: …..27) And when he hath made her to drink the water, then it shall come to pass, that, if she be defiled, and have done trespass against her husband, that the water that causeth the curse shall enter into her, and become bitter, and her belly shall swell, and her thigh shall rot: and the woman shall be a curse among her people.

Secondly, for one moment try and imagine dirt that is scraped off a blood soaked floor that is used daily for killing sacrificial animals. There were probably enough germs in that filthy soil to kill a herd of elephants! Why would a god who created the universe ever come up with such a barbaric ritual to expose infidelity, and only applying to the male? Especially when it hinges solely on a man’s jealousy and doesn’t even apply to a male’s infidelity and besides that men could have as many women as they wanted. It’s very telling to see how big a role jealousy and revenge play in the male mindset and then to see that perfectly reflected in the two greatest attributes of god, which are jealousy and revenge.

If for no other reason these abominations should wake us up to some of the horrendously unjust, biased laws contained in the Bible, and cause us to be more discerning and careful when we speak as if every word of Scripture is coming from God…even when the Bible says “the Lord spoke”. It’s time to take off the blinders and face reality; otherwise our progress to search out truth will be blocked.

Unequal Punishment

 Here is another prime example of sexism in the Bible where we see the severity of punishment being determined by gender instead of by the offense that was committed. In Exodus a case is described where in the process of men fighting a pregnant wife of one of the men happens to get hurt so as to lose her child, the man is punished with a monetary fine. Compare that with Deuteronomy where we read that when two men are fighting and a woman grabs one of the men by his testicles, her punishment is to have her hand cut off. Comparing the two examples, “a woman getting hurt and losing her baby, versus a woman grabbing a man’s testicles,” the punishments seem to vary radically depending on gender, making a clear case for sexism in the Bible.

Exo.21:22 If men strive, and hurt a woman with child, so that her fruit depart from her, and yet no mischief follow: he shall be surely punished, according as the woman’s husband will lay upon him; and he shall pay as the judges determine.

Deut.25:11-12 When men strive together one with another and the wife of the one draweth near for to deliver her husband out of the hand of him that smiteth him, and putteth forth her hand, and taketh him by the secrets: Then thou shalt cut off her hand, thine eye shall not pity her.

 

Jephthah’s Daughter

This is the story of Jephthah’s daughter. After the spirit of the Lord came upon Jephthah he vowed a vow unto Lord, which was that if the Lord would deliver the Ammonites into his hands then he would offer a burnt offering unto the Lord. The offering that he chose to give the Lord would be the first person that came forth out of the door of his house to meet him on his victorious return. As you might guess, the Bible records that the Lord did indeed deliver the Ammonites into Jephthah’s hands, and the first person to run to greet him on his return was his only daughter. So, in order to keep his vow to the Lord, Jephthah gave his only daughter as a burnt offering. As you might have already guessed, I have a few problems with this story!

Judges 11:29-39 Then the Spirit of the LORD came upon Jephthah, and he passed over Gilead, and Manasseh, and passed over Mizpeh of Gilead, and from Mizpeh of Gilead he passed over unto the children of Ammon. And Jephthah vowed a vow unto the LORD, and said, If thou shalt without fail deliver the children of Ammon into mine hands, Then it shall be, that whatsoever cometh forth of the doors of my house to meet me, when I return in peace from the children of Ammon, shall surely be the LORD’S, and I will offer it up for a burnt offering. So Jephthah passed over unto the children of Ammon to fight against them; and the LORD delivered them into his hands. And he smote them from Aroer, even till thou come to Minnith, even twenty cities, and unto the plain of the vineyards, with a very great slaughter. Thus the children of Ammon were subdued before the children of Israel. And Jephthah came to Mizpeh unto his house, and, behold, his daughter came out to meet him with timbrels and with dances: and she was his only child; beside her he had neither son nor daughter. And it came to pass, when he saw her, that he rent his clothes, and said, Alas, my daughter! thou hast brought me very low, and thou art one of them that trouble me: for I have opened my mouth unto the LORD, and I cannot go back. And she said unto him, My father, if thou hast opened thy mouth unto the LORD, do to me according to that which hath proceeded out of thy mouth; forasmuch as the LORD hath taken vengeance for thee of thine enemies, even of the children of Ammon. And she said unto her father, Let this thing be done for me: let me alone two months, that I may go up and down upon the mountains, and bewail my virginity, I and my fellows. And he said, Go. And he sent her away for two months: and she went with her companions, and bewailed her virginity upon the mountains. And it came to pass at the end of two months, that she returned unto her father, who did with her according to his vow which he had vowed: and she knew no man.

First off, why in the world would anyone think that a deity held to be the creator of the universe would ever consider accepting a vow such as the one given by Jephthah? By the very nature of his vow a human life from his household would be taken. Can anyone imagine what kind of outrage would ensue if one of our leaders offered to give his daughter, or any other human life as a sacrifice if his enemies were delivered to him? Are we really supposed to believe that it is somehow acceptable for a being held by many to be the author of our morality to not only allow such a vow to be made, but also allow the maker of the vow to follow through with the moral abomination of offering the life of his daughter as a burnt sacrifice. Mind you, this is the same deity (Yahweh) that gave a death sentence to any Israelite or pagan who offered their children up to Molech.

Lev.20:2 Again, thou shalt say to the children of Israel, Whosoever he be of the children of Israel, or of the strangers that sojourn in Israel, that giveth any of his seed unto Molech; he shall surely be put to death: the people of the land shall stone him with stones.

My understanding fails me when I realize that moral abominations such as the sacrifice of Jephthah’s daughter exist side by side in the Bible with the Ten Commandments, considered by many as the greatest moral code ever received, and these are believed to be given by the one true god. It’s bad enough that fallible men make such egregious vows, but to believe that the deity millions hold to be the creator of everything in the universe could somehow approve of and allow to be carried out is beyond anything any rational thinking person should accept. It is easy to recall a similar story of attempted sacrifice of a male child named Isaac, the difference being god intervened and saved his life. This biblical story is just one more example as to why it is impossible for me to believe that Yahweh is anything more than a god made up in the minds of irrational Bronze Age men, who constructed him after the form of a male warrior.

 

Male Animals Preferred

Another interesting addition to the male bias theme is the rules on the gender of animals to be sacrificed. Many of the offerings that the Hebrews had to offer the Lord required that the animals sacrificed be male. Now, what difference might you ask is there between a male animal and a female as far as god would be concerned? The answer could be that most animal sacrifices were given as some form of trespass offering to cover various sins of the people and since a firstborn male was considered holy unto the Lord he could be used for purification of those sins; whereas a female could not.

Num.3:13 Because all the firstborn are mine; for on the day that I smote all the firstborn in the land of Egypt I hallowed (holy) unto me all the firstborn (males) in Israel, both man and beast: mine shall they be: I am the LORD.

Exo.12:15 Your lamb shall be without blemish, a male of the first year: ye shall take it out from the sheep, or from the goats:

Exo.34:19 All that openeth the matrix is mine; and every firstling among thy cattle, whether ox or sheep, that is male.

Lev.1:3 If his offering be a burnt sacrifice of the herd, let him offer a male without blemish: he shall offer it of his own voluntary will at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation before the LORD.

Lev.1:10 And if his offering be of the flocks, namely, of the sheep, or of the goats, for a burnt sacrifice; he shall bring it a male without blemish.

Lev.4:23 Or if his sin, wherein he hath sinned, come to his knowledge; he shall bring his offering, a kid of the goats, a male without blemish:

Lev.22:19 Ye shall offer at your own will a male without blemish, of the beeves, of the sheep, or of the goats.

Luke 2:23 (As it is written in the law of the Lord, Every male that openeth the womb shall be called holy to the Lord😉

 This is just another very strong pointer that reveals once again the male bias so prevalent in Scripture. The male mindset was so obsessed with their own gender that even the animals were given a superior position if they were male.


Chapter 6

Progeny: In the loins of a man

 

Have you ever noticed how it is always women who are barren in Scripture, not once in the entire Bible is infertility ever attributed to the male? It’s a proven fact that up to fifty percent of infertility is attributed to the male, so if Yahweh created humans then he was well aware of this fact, yet why is it in the Bible that infertility is always laid at the feet of the woman? Even if primitive man believed that all infertility was because a woman was barren it does not mean Yahweh should have agreed with them and supported the idea. Yahweh could have easily informed ignorant humans on the nature of reproduction, instead he led men to believe that they were the carriers of little Homunculus (sperm containing a complete individual human) in their loins, which directly led to the belief that women were only the soil which grew the Homunculus.

Gen.15: 3-4 And Abram said, Behold, to me thou hast given no seed: and, lo, one born in my house is mine heir. And, behold, the word of the LORD came unto him, saying, This shall not be thine heir; but he that shall come forth out of thine own bowels shall be thine heir.

 Gen.46:26 All the souls that came with Jacob into Egypt, which came out of his loins, besides Jacob’s sons’ wives, all the souls were threescore and six;

 Exo.1:5 And all the souls that came out of the loins of Jacob were seventy souls: for Joseph was in Egypt already.

2Chron.6:9 Notwithstanding thou shalt not build the house; but thy son which shall come forth out of thy loins, he shall build the house for my name.

Heb.7:5 And verily they that are of the sons of Levi, who receive the office of the priesthood, have a commandment to take tithes of the people according to the law, that is, of their brethren, though they come out of the loins of Abraham:

Heb.7:9-10 And as I may so say, Levi also, who receiveth tithes, paid tithes in Abraham. For he was yet in the loins of his father, when Melchisedec met him.

According to the Bible it is Yahweh who causes women to be barren, and it is Yahweh who opens their wombs when he so desires to show his power. It seems that Yahweh is solely the cause of a woman’s infertility and it never has anything to do with the man. When Yahweh decides to open a woman’s womb she gets pregnant with the Homunculus from the man, otherwise she remains barren.

Gen. 11:30 But Sarai was barren; she had no child.

Gen.21:1-2 And the LORD visited Sarah as he had said, and the LORD did unto Sarah as he had spoken. For Sarah conceived, and bare Abraham a son in his old age, at the set time of which God had spoken to him.

Gen.20:18 For the LORD had fast closed up all the wombs of the house of Abimelech, because of Sarah Abraham’s wife.

Gen. 25:21 And Isaac intreated the LORD for his wife, because she was barren: and the LORD was intreated of him, and Rebekah his wife conceived.

Gen.29:31 And when the LORD saw that Leah was hated, he opened her womb: but Rachel was barren.

Gen.30:22 And God remembered Rachel, and God hearkened to her, and opened her womb.

1Sam.1:5 But unto Hannah he gave a worthy portion; for he loved Hannah: but the LORD had shut up her womb. And her adversary also provoked her sore, for to make her fret, because the LORD had shut up her womb…11 And she vowed a vow, and said, O LORD of hosts, if thou wilt indeed look on the affliction of thine handmaid, and remember me, and not forget thine handmaid, but wilt give unto thine handmaid a man child, then I will give him unto the LORD all the days of his life, and there shall no razor come upon his head.

Judges 13:2-3 And there was a certain man of Zorah, of the family of the Danites, whose name was Manoah; and his wife was barren, and bare not. And the angel of the LORD appeared unto the woman, and said unto her, Behold now, thou art barren, and bearest not: but thou shalt conceive, and bear a son.

Isaiah 66:9 Shall I bring to the birth, and not cause to bring forth? saith the LORD: shall I cause to bring forth, and shut the womb? saith thy God.

Luke 1:7 & 36 And they had no child, because that Elisabeth was barren, and they both were now well stricken in years…And, behold, thy cousin Elisabeth, she hath also conceived a son in her old age: and this is the sixth month with her, who was called barren.

Another interesting fact noted in Scripture is the occurrence of abortions carried out by Yahweh. It seems that the Biblegod had no problem with causing women to miscarry, or the outright killing of an unborn fetus.

Hosea 9:14-16 Give them, O LORD: what wilt thou give? give them a miscarrying womb and dry breasts…Ephraim is smitten, their root is dried up, they shall bear no fruit: yea, though they bring forth, yet will I slay even the beloved fruit of their womb.

Exo.21:22 If men strive, and hurt a woman with child, so that her fruit depart from her, and yet no mischief follow: he shall be surely punished, according as the woman’s husband will lay upon him; and he shall pay as the judges determine.

All in all it is very evident from the verses that I have listed that the primitive knowledge of men is what influenced the information on reproduction that we find in the Bible, which is just another pointer showing that it was men who penned the words of Scripture according to their limited understanding of the time period in which they lived.

The Birth of Sons

 

Another extremely obvious example of biblical male bias is the almost exclusive listings and occurrences of male births. In Genesis 4, Eve gives birth to three sons, Cain, Able, and Seth; Genesis 5, continues with a long list of male descendants from Adam, ending with Noah begetting sons and daughters. The only children of Noah that are named are his three sons, Shem, Ham, and Japheth (whose wives remain nameless), and they were Noah’s only children to enter the Ark with him. The next stop in our male journey is the listing of the sons of Shem, Ham and Japheth in Genesis 10; the list mentions five sons of Japheth, four sons of Ham, and five sons of Shem, it then goes on to list their grandsons. So far in the story there is a plethora of male offspring being listed, but no females – which begs the question – where did Noah’s great grandsons find wives in a world where all life had just been destroyed by the Flood?

Now, the omission of female offspring is understandable, if one views biblical history as being written by males, but not so realistic given the god inspired view most Christians hold to. The Bible tells us that god created male and female to be fruitful and multiply, and we know that females carry half of the DNA, so if Scripture is truly god inspired why does it only focus on the birth of sons leaving half the population excluded? The mother of Jesus was Mary, yet her genealogy in not listed because according to Jewish law only the father’s bloodline counted.  That is why Joseph who according to the Bible was only the stepfather of Jesus and not of his true bloodline gets mentioned in both Matthew and Luke. Since Jesus had no earthly father how are we to know his true lineage?

Continuing on with the biblical record of male births, the next in line is Terah, the father of Abraham who is in the lineage of Noah’s son, Shem. Terah had three sons, Abram, Nahor, and Lot. Abraham married Sarah who was barren, until God blessed her with a son called Isaac at ninety years of age. Abraham also had another son by his maid-servant Hagar. Abrahams only son by Sarah, Isaac marries Rebecca who is barren until midlife when God blesses her with twin sons, Jacob, and Esau. Of the two sons of Isaac, Jacob ends up fathering twelve sons and one daughter from his two wives and two concubines. The one daughter, Dinah, born of Leah is unique; it is the one and only time in the entire Bible where the birth of a named daughter is recorded.

 Gen. 30:21 And afterwards she bare a daughter, and called her name Dinah.

So far in the biblical narrative there has been an abundance of male offspring begotten, which is understandable given the importance of patriarchy in the genealogical record, the part that is unbelievable is that all the dominant figures in the lineage of Adam always happen to have sons, how convenient is that given it is only the male offspring that are of any importance. If one views the Bible from the standpoint of being an historical document composed by male authors, the bias in favor of the male is expected, though the paucity of the female gender somewhat discredits its historical value. It is only when Scripture is held to be the inspired word of god that its incredulity becomes apparent. The simple laws of reproduction  tells us that the chances of giving birth to male offspring is equal to that of female offspring, consequently the Bible reveals it is neither neutral nor objective, but has a male agenda which is seen throughout its pages by defining from its inception the superior status of male offspring. After critiquing the evidence of males being disproportionally represented and favored, one has no choice but to conclude that either the Bible was written by men who believed women to be inferior and not worthy of mention, or it was inspired by a misogynistic god who created the female with an inherent lesser value than the male. Speaking from the perspective of a woman who knows her intellect to be equivalent to that of a man, I choose to believe the Bible was written by men who lived in a culture of male dominance and hegemony; hence the god they created would reflect their male mindset.

Another interesting thought to contemplate and question to ask of the Biblegod, is why does an all knowing god allow evil people like Hitler to be born, when he knows that they will do nothing but perpetrate tremendous suffering upon humanity? We know from the Bible that its god has no problem with withholding conception and shutting up a woman’s womb for his own purposes.

Gen.30:2 And Jacob’s anger was kindled against Rachel: and he said, Am I in God’s stead, who hath withheld from thee the fruit of the womb?

1Sam.1:5 But unto Hannah he gave a worthy portion; for he loved Hannah: but the LORD had shut up her womb.

We also know from the Bible that god knows the thoughts and intents of a person before they are formed in the womb.

Jer. 1:5 Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations.

In Hosea we read that god has no problem with causing a woman to miscarry or slaying the child after it is born.

Hosea 9:14 Give them, O LORD: what wilt thou give? Give them a miscarrying womb and dry breasts…16) Ephraim is smitten, their root is dried up, they shall bear no fruit: yea, though they bring forth, yet will I slay even the beloved fruit of their womb.

Another verse that exemplifies god’s willingness to kill babies is the account of David and Bathsheba. Here we read that god specifically slays David’s firstborn son, because of David’s sin. Not only does god kill David’s son, but he first struck him down with a sickness and allowed him to suffer for seven days before he died, no matter how much David begged and pleaded for him to be saved.

2Sam.12:13-17  And David said unto Nathan, I have sinned against the LORD. And Nathan said unto David, The LORD also hath put away thy sin; thou shalt not die. Howbeit, because by this deed thou hast given great occasion to the enemies of the LORD to blaspheme, the child also that is born unto thee shall surely die. And Nathan departed unto his house. And the LORD struck the child that Uriah’s wife bare unto David, and it was very sick. David therefore besought God for the child; and David fasted, and went in, and lay all night upon the earth. And the elders of his house arose, and went to him, to raise him up from the earth: but he would not, neither did he eat bread with them. And it came to pass on the seventh day, that the child died

Last, but not least we know from scripture that god hates babies while they are still in the womb based on his foreknowledge. The apostle Paul tells us in Romans that god hated Esau while he was still in the womb, before the child could do good or evil, based solely on his knowing of how the child would turn out.

Romans 9:10-13 And not only this; but when Rebecca also had conceived by one, even by our father Isaac; (For the children being not yet born, neither having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works, but of him that calleth;) It was said unto her, The elder shall serve the younger. As it is written, Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated.

From all these verses that I have presented, it is clear to see that the god of the Bible is quite willing to close up a woman’s womb, cause a woman to miscarry a child, slay an infant after birth, or hate a baby before it is born. If all these things are true of god, then one would think he would have no problem in causing a woman to miscarry a child, if he knew that the baby would turn out to be an evil person like Hitler who was responsible for the deaths of more than six million people. We know however from all the evidence presented that the Bible was written by men and not inspired by god.

An Insurmountable Problem

 

As a closing note to this chapter an insurmountable problem comes to mind and must be overcome if one is to hold to the idea that the cosmos was designed by an intelligent god and that is the problem of suffering. This is not just suffering caused by those who wish to impose evil on others, but suffering at the hands of natural causes like diseases, mutations, and climatic conditions. If one chooses to hide under the banner of a creator then one must concede the fact that all the suffering we see in the world was and is intentionally allowed.

 

Chapter 7

The Value of a Female

 

Women’s bodies are not a commodity as many patriarchal societies believe, and no man has a right to violate the integrity of her body in any way. Throughout history the value of a woman has been placed upon her sexual purity and it is when men violate her integrity that she becomes devalued. There is no such devaluation for a man, because it is men who have set the standard of a woman’s worth and it is men who created the division of inequality between the genders. This idea of a woman’s value and worth being placed upon her sexual purity is one of histories greatest tragedies that have been promoted by most sacred texts including the Bible. A man’s worth is placed upon his achievements in life; in biblical times it was accomplishments such as being a good warrior, hunter, priest or ruler that set the standard for a man’s value. The same did not hold true for women, the sole attribute that made her valuable was her virginity, if that was gone her worth fell considerably. Most religions of the world are predominately patriarchal and are the standard bearers that have equated the idea of a woman’s purity with her sexuality; this standard generally doesn’t apply to men. In the Bible the term virgin is used almost exclusively to mean a female who has not had sexual intercourse; the term is not used in reference to men because a man’s purity is not based on whether or not he has had sexual intercourse. A woman is defiled if she has intercourse outside of marriage and is labeled with terms like whore and harlot; whereas men who visit prostitutes have no such derogative label placed upon them. In the area of sexual purity there is no equivalence between men and women even though it is the man who causes the woman to be defiled.

The fixation on a woman’s virginity is an age old tradition that didn’t start with the biblical authors and continues on until today in many backward developing countries. Girls are often married off as young as 10 years old to assure sexual purity, thus labeling her only worth as that of a virgin. Boys are trained in a vocation, whereas girls are only expected to please a man and bear offspring. This male mindset of the female value being only that of sexual purity was mapped directly onto the male god Yahweh, thus the deity took on the standard of men which is very telling of his origins.

The Bible also promotes the idea of property status for women because it places a monetary value on them, with fathers selling their daughters and men purchasing wives…it’s all about the exchange of currency for female flesh. The Bible clearly reinforces this practice of division between male and female in all areas of life which reveals its human origins. What starts out in the second chapter of Genesis with male and female being as “one flesh” quickly devolves into the woman being ruled over by the man and becoming his possession, thus setting clear lines of division between the genders and making certain natural functions of a woman’s body considered unclean and shameful. Even in the New Testament Jesus makes it clear to his audience that the best condition for man is to be unmarried (separated from the woman), as does the apostle Paul who confirms the sentiment that it is best not to touch a woman and is only good to marry if one cannot contain their sexual desires, but the better way is to remain unmarried as he is. This does nothing but exacerbate the already existing division between male and female, which is also contrary to the idea of unity put forth in Genesis 2.

Matt.19:10-12 His disciples say unto him, If the case of the man be so with his wife, it is not good to marry. But he said unto them, All men cannot receive this saying, save they to whom it is given. For there are some eunuchs, which were so born from their mother’s womb: and there are some eunuchs, which were made eunuchs of men: and there be eunuchs, which have made themselves eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven’s sake. He that is able to receive it, let him receive it.

1 Cor.7:1-2Now concerning the things whereof ye wrote unto me: It is good for a man not to touch a woman. Nevertheless, to avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife, and let every woman have her own husband. 8-9 I say therefore to the unmarried and widows, It is good for them if they abide even as I. But if they cannot contain, let them marry: for it is better to marry than to burn.

Even though the idea of division of the genders did not originate in the Bible, its teaching clearly reinforces the male viewpoint of different standards of value for men and women. A woman’s value is judged on what she is worth to a man, thus robbing her of her own identity and integral value; whereas a man’s value is judged solely on the standard of men and his integrity remains intact. If anyone has any doubt as to the origins of male centered biblical thought, it can quickly be put to rest; every patriarchal society in the history of humankind is structured on a male dominated order. Patriarchal systems were well underway before the Hebrews became a people worshiping one god and have continued on through history until today. This being the case it is easy to see the progression of male domination of women being incorporated into the male mindset that dressed the god of the Bible in his masculine garments. The erroneous idea that the Bible teaches unity is held by most Christians who are unaware that just beneath the seemingly peaceful, unified surface lies a tempest of division. Not only is there division amongst the genders, but division amongst races is also rampant. The only respite from this overflowing abundance of division is the unity of salvation found in Christ, which applies to the male and female of all races on earth; meaning that every human on the planet can be saved according to the Bible if they believe that Jesus is the son of god. Oddly enough one book, Galatians contains the only verse in the Bible that specifically includes male and female as part of the universality of salvation.

Gal.3:28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.

These verses of unification with god through salvation have nothing to do with the lack of fleshly equality amongst genders, which is reinforced by all the New Testament writers. Rules, laws and obedience are the hallmarks of Scripture, which masquerade under the guise of freedom espoused by Jesus and his apostles. Instead of punishment for violent behavior against women, suppression is supported and condoned by biblical teachings. There can be no true freedom when one is subjugated to the rule of another because of their gender, neither is there any freedom when one is threatened with hell if you don’t conform to a specific set of doctrines. It’s time for women to rise up and demand their equal place alongside men, and fathers to begin teaching their sons to view women as their equals. Sadly though, this can never be gleaned from the pages of the Bible.

Because the primary value a woman had was her virginity once that was taken from her she was essentially worthless, so if her husband chose to discard her she may have to turn to prostitution in order to support herself. There are many verses throughout the Old Testament that exemplify the fact that the value of women is based on how she pleases a man sexually. What’s very important to keep in mind is that this view of woman as property was prevalent throughout all the patriarchal cultures of that time period, with that being the case it seems odd indeed that Yahweh needed to double down and reinforce that idea through giving more gender biased laws…proving once again the male bias of the Bible.

Rape Sanctioned

In the section of the Law of Moses found below, both the ownership of women and gender-bias is exposed. Under the Law, given by the god of the Bible, we read of a case pertaining to a man finding a virgin woman who is not engaged, and raping her (The Hebrew word used is “taphas”, which means “to take hold of, or seize”).  The punishment for this crime of rape, is that the accused man is required to pay the woman’s father fifty shekels and marry her because he has “humbled” her (anah: to afflict, browbeat, or oppress)…also; he is never allowed to divorce her. But, that doesn’t mean he can’t marry other women. So, not only is the poor woman forced to marry her rapist, but she must also be bound to him for life, since a woman was not allowed to divorce her husband under the Mosaic Law (only men could divorce their wives). The father profits by getting recompensed for his damaged goods (his humbled daughter) and the rapist profits by gaining a life-long sex-slave…all at the expense of the woman.

Deut.22:28-29 If a man find a damsel that is a virgin, which is not betrothed, and lay hold (taphas) on her, and lie with her, and they be found; Then the man that lay with her shall give unto the damsel’s father fifty shekels of silver, and she shall be his wife; because he hath humbled her (anah), he may not put her away all his days.

This verse is not only horrific in nature, but epitomizes the value of a women being solely based on her sexual purity. No concern is given for the woman’s feelings, or what manner of man she is being forced to marry. Nothing is said concerning the actions of the man and no reprimand is mentioned. The entire focus is placed on the devaluation of the woman’s sexual worth clearly showing the mentality behind this law on rape, given to men by Yahweh. One must ask; does paying off the father and marrying the victim lessen the violation? I should think not! As is a common biblical theme in the area of women’s rights; the abuser is rewarded while the victim is punished.

Stone Her

In the same chapter of Deuteronomy, another aspect of a man’s sexual displeasure of a woman who he thinks is not a virgin on their wedding night is dealt with. If the woman’s parents are able to prove to the man that their daughter is indeed a virgin, then the man is required to pay her family one hundred shekels of silver because he has disparaged the family name…showing a tight link between a woman’s virginity and her monetary value. On the other hand if the woman’s family is unable to supply the “tokens of virginity” proving to the man that she is a virgin, then the woman is to be stoned to death. Of course there is no similar requirement for the man to be able to prove his virginity, but then who ever said the Bible was fair or not biased against women. Men can go to prostitutes whenever they wish with no charges brought against them, so their virginity is a mute point. I am continually quite stunned when I think of how utterly biased the Bible is toward the male and it seems to go relatively unnoticed amongst Christians for the most part. Many modern Christian men seem to have no problem with the idea of male headship and female subjugation because it is decreed by the god of the Bible, and it suits their desire for control.

Deut.22:13-21 If any man take a wife, and go in unto her, and hate her, And give occasions of speech against her, and bring up an evil name upon her, and say, I took this woman, and when I came to her, I found her not a maid: Then shall the father of the damsel, and her mother, take and bring forth the tokens of the damsel’s virginity unto the elders of the city in the gate: And the damsel’s father shall say unto the elders, I gave my daughter unto this man to wife, and he hateth her; And, lo, he hath given occasions of speech against her, saying, I found not thy daughter a maid; and yet these are the tokens of my daughter’s virginity. And they shall spread the cloth before the elders of the city. And the elders of that city shall take that man and chastise him; And they shall amerce him in an hundred shekels of silver, and give them unto the father of the damsel, because he hath brought up an evil name upon a virgin of Israel: and she shall be his wife; he may not put her away all his days. But if this thing be true, and the tokens of virginity be not found for the damsel: Then they shall bring out the damsel to the door of her father’s house, and the men of her city shall stone her with stones that she die: because she hath wrought folly in Israel, to play the whore in her father’s house: so shalt thou put evil away from among you.

These are prime examples of the mindset of patriarchal societies where women were treated as property…and the authors of the Bible were no different then any other peoples of their time period, which is expressed very clearly in their writings. Women were considered the property of the man: first of the father and then of the husband. This was the norm for most cultures of the world at that time and in parts of the world today, which is an exact reflection of how the authors of the Bible created their “God” to view women, thus incorporating it into their law. The idea of placing a monetary value on women only reinforces her status as property. Men receive money for females; whether it is a father selling his daughter as a slave, or a man purchasing a woman for a wife it all has to do with the exchanging of currency for human flesh. As I have said: “Men created the biblical god in their own image” the only thing that changed from other cultures of the time period was having one god make all the laws instead of many.

 

Half the Value of a Man

Not only were women considered property in the Bible, but their monetary value was half that of a man under the law of Yahweh. When a vow was made to the Lord, the person who made the vow was estimated at a certain monetary worth according to their age and gender. If the vow was made by a man his value in the eyes of the Lord was up to twice that of a woman, clearly denoting that a female was inferior to the male according to Yahweh. This declaration is recorded in Leviticus as coming directly from the Lord and given to Moses as one of the laws of Yahweh, proving once again the overwhelming male bias of the Bible.

Lev.27:1-7 And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, When a man shall make a singular vow, the persons shall be for the LORD by thy estimation. And thy estimation shall be of the male from twenty years old even unto sixty years old, even thy estimation shall be fifty shekels of silver, after the shekel of the sanctuary. And if it be a female, then thy estimation shall be thirty shekels. And if it be from five years old even unto twenty years old, then thy estimation shall be of the male twenty shekels, and for the female ten shekels. And if it be from a month old even unto five years old, then thy estimation shall be of the male five shekels of silver, and for the female thy estimation shall be three shekels of silver. And if it be from sixty years old and above; if it be a male, then thy estimation shall be fifteen shekels, and for the female ten shekels.

 

1. 20– 60 year old male = 50 shekels
2. 20-60 year old female = 30 shekels
3. 5-20 year old male = 20 shekels
4. 5-20 year old female = 10 shekels
5. 1 month -5 year old male =5 shekels of silver
6. 1 month-5 year old female = 3 shekels of silver
7.60 years and above male =15 shekels
8. 60 years and above female = 10 shekels

 

 

Chapter 8

The Old and New United in Bias

 

Turning to the New Testament we find that according to the Apostle Paul in his letter to Timothy, the reason the woman was put under the authority of the man, is because Eve was deceived by the Snake, and therefore she was the one who transgressed. For that reason, and that reason alone, all women from “The Garden of Eden” till now bear that curse in their femininity. Meaning, that woman are placed in subjugation under the man solely because of gender…not because of lack of intellect, not because of lack of ability, not for any reason other than the sole fact of being female! Paul also confirms this subjugation of women, showing that being under obedience to a man is a part of the law and even going so far as to say it is a shame for women to speak in church.

1 Tim. 2:11-14 Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection. But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence. For Adam was first formed, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression. Notwithstanding she shall be saved in childbearing, if they continue in faith and charity and holiness with sobriety.

1Cor.14:34-35 Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience, as also saith the law. And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the church.

Would any person ever dream of punishing every male or female on the planet, because an individual man or woman committed a crime? Of course not! But, that is exactly what the god of the Bible is portrayed as doing. The ONLY reason ever given throughout the entire Bible for the hierarchical order of male headship is the one I just cited (Eve’s transgression), and that is the lame excuse Christian men have used for centuries to keep women from sharing equal rights with them. It truly is a shameful thing.

One of the ironies of the biblical account of creation which states that Adam was formed first then the woman was formed from the rib of the man, is the reality that men actually come from woman and are literally flesh and bone of the woman. Every human on the planet begins from a single egg cell that is part of the body of their mother, that original cell divides to become every cell in the body of the child, hence her offspring is literally one with her body and nourished by her blood. The biblical idea of woman coming from man is just a pathetic attempt to once again rob the woman of her equal standing with man by stripping her of recognition in creating life.

Of course the bias continues big time in the New Testament, despite the fact that the teachings of Jesus are for the most part extremely egalitarian, though he fails miserably to condemn any of the gender biased laws contained in the Old Testament, so by default he is condoning them. The apostle Paul is the culprit for most of the bias against women in the New Testament, but the apostle Peter, also plays a significant part even though only two books are attributed to him, versus fourteen epistles for Paul.

According to Paul a woman is nothing without the man, for she is his glory, and came from the man and was created for the man. The man is to be the head over the woman in the same manner as a male god is the head of Christ and a male Christ is the head of the Church. With teachings like these built into the foundation of Christianity is it any wonder that women have had to struggle so hard (and are still struggling) to get an equal standing with men.

1Cor.11:3-10 But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God….But every woman that prayeth or prophesieth with her head uncovered dishonoureth her head: for that is even all one as if she were shaven. For if the woman be not covered, let her also be shorn: but if it be a shame for a woman to be shorn or shaven, let her be covered. For a man indeed ought not to cover his head, forasmuch as he is the image and glory of God: but the woman is the glory of the man. For the man is not of the woman; but the woman of the man. Neither was the man created for the woman; but the woman for the man.For this cause ought the woman to have power on her head because of the angels.

But, only the tip of the proverbial iceberg has been touched. The egregious bias continues in 1Timothy, where Paul sets forth the standard for proper conduct of the woman that is solely based on gender…no such standard is set forth for men. A woman who is widowed can only be taken in by the Church IF she has been the wife of one man, and IF she has lodged strangers, and washed the feet of the saints, IF she has relieved the afflicted and has diligently followed every good work. Then Paul goes into a tirade against young widows, refusing them support from the Church, commanding they marry and bear children, otherwise they will become idle, wandering from house to house, tattlers, busybodies, and ultimately turning to Satan. Wow, what a load of male chauvinism and misogyny – funny thing again – the same standard does not apply to men.

1Tim.5:9- Let not a widow be taken into the number under threescore years old, having been the wife of one man, Well reported of for good works; if she have brought up children, if she have lodged strangers, if she have washed the saints’ feet, if she have relieved the afflicted, if she have diligently followed every good work. But the younger widows refuse: for when they have begun to wax wanton against Christ, they will marry; Having damnation, because they have cast off their first faith. And withal they learn to be idle, wandering about from house to house; and not only idle, but tattlers also and busybodies, speaking things which they ought not. I will therefore that the younger women marry, bear children, guide the house, give none occasion to the adversary to speak reproachfully. For some are already turned aside after Satan.

It is very apparent that the teachings of Paul concerning women directly paralleled many of the traditions practiced by the surrounding cultures, once again pointing to the fact that the words of Paul were not “God-given”, but rather a direct reflection of the patriarchal customs and traditions of his time.

 

In Subjection to her Husband

The Apostle Peter seems to share the same understanding of a woman’s place being under the authority of a man, as Paul…which is in keeping with their Jewish upbringing. Even though both men supposedly were following the teachings of Jesus (who never spoke for or against man’s headship over a woman, even though he did keep Jewish law which was biased against women) they chose to incorporate the customs of their patriarchal society into their rendition of the teachings of Jesus.

Peter clearly states that a woman is to be in subjection to her husband; bringing up the account of Sarah’s subservience to Abraham, calling him lord. One of the reasons that Peter states is that through a woman’s fearful conduct and behavior in being submissive she will win her husband over, but is that really the best way to influence others? Isn’t that just reinforcing the idea of men ruling over women? If both sexes are truly equal, why does the male need to rule over the female based solely on the fact of gender? Men and women can each fulfill the roles they have the expertise for, or are best suited for without one party ruling over the other. It is ridiculous to compare the equality of men and women with parents ruling over children as many Christian men do! Children need to be taught and guided to grow into maturity, but that is not the case with mature men and women who are both equal in intellect, capability to care for oneself, and raise children. If a woman can raise a child to maturity, why would she need a man to be in headship over her? The obvious answer: she doesn’t!

1Peter 3:1-7 Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives; While they behold your chaste conversation (conduct, behavior) coupled with fear (phobos: fear, terror, dread). Whose adorning let it not be that outward adorning of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel; But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price. For after this manner in the old time the holy women also, who trusted in God, adorned themselves, being in subjection unto their own husbands: Even as Sara obeyed Abraham, calling him lord: whose daughters ye are, as long as ye do well, and are not afraid with any amazement. Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge (intelligence), giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker (asthenes: weak, sick, feeble, impotent) vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered.

Peter goes on to say that men should dwell with their wives through intelligence… reasoning that because they are weaker (mentally and physically) it is needful that men have the position of ruler-ship over them. What is so grievous about the idea of a hierarchical order based on strength, is that it reinforces a flawed concept of authority. Instead of a man using his strength and more aggression nature to protect his family from enemies, it is turned against the ones who supposedly need the protecting, thus the man turns from a protector into a dominator. This very idea is reinforced over, and over again throughout the Bible, starting in Genesis when man is given flat-out ruler-ship over the woman and ending in the New Testament book of Revelation with the idea of men being defiled by women.

Rev.14:14 These are they which were not defiled with women; for they are virgins. These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth. These were redeemed from among men, being the firstfruits unto God and to the Lamb.

When we compare the Partnership model with the Dominator model, we can see where the Partnership model wins hands-down…drawing on the strengths of both sexes to benefit the whole, thus instead of one gender ruling over the other, both work together to achieve a common goal, which is quite the opposite of the arbitrary reason for male headship that the Bible promotes.

The fundamental doctrine of the New Testament is the hierarchical order of: God the father, over Jesus the husband, over the Church as the bride. Its sub-category is the make-up of the Church, which includes the headship of the male/husband, and the subordination of the woman/wife.

Eph 5:23 For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body.

Col 3:18 Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as it is fit in the Lord.

Titus 2:4-5 That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.

This is in keeping with all the patriarchal societies existing since ancient times where male ruler-ship was based solely on the fact of the aggression of the man…NOT because a woman needed to have a ruler over her. So, to say that this hierarchical order is ordained by the creator god, is like saying that by the way “God” naturally ordered life a female needs to be ruled over by a male, yet if this is the case why do we not see this structure in the rest of the animal kingdom?

When one blows away all the fundamentalist noise of the Bible being the revelation of the one true god, we can see what’s left is an ordered structure built solely from the patriarchal system of rule, created from the mind of the aggressively natured male and patterned after his ego. The fact of the matter is that a woman does not need a man to rule over her any more than a man would need a woman to rule over him. Both sexes are perfectly capable of taking care of themselves…the only time a problem arises is when human males turn on the females of their species in aggression. That is when men should protect the woman from other men, NOT turn on the woman and try to dominate and control her…they’ve got it backwards. The man and woman are supposed to work together in partnership for the betterment of the whole. No good comes from domination and the well-being of both is compromised.

So, exactly how is this biblical hierarchical system of order where the male is put in the position of ruling over the women supposed to benefit the woman? The typical results that one sees in these dominator systems is where the man keeps the woman from fulfilling her full potential, like:

  1. Not allowing women to hold positions of leadership over men.
  2. Not allowing a woman to speak in Church.
  3. Not allowing women to live up to their full potential.
  4. Not allowing women to be educated.

All we find are restrictions of what a woman cannot do, that a man is allowed to do; whereas men are allowed to do many things that a woman is not allowed to do merely because she is female. This system of patriarchy imposed upon humanity by the Bible has a clear record of failure when viewed throughout history. To believe a flawed structure like patriarchy that is male focused and centered would be promoted by a creator god is beyond credulous and only adds to the many reasons why the Bible should be rejected as the word of god.

 

Why didn’t Jesus stand up for women’s rights?

Throughout the Gospels it is written that Jesus speaks out against the way religious leaders were interpreting many of the Old Testament laws that were given to the Jews through Moses by their god Yahweh.  So, why didn’t he also speak out against the inequality of women that was also written in the law? For example, when the Jews sought to stone the woman caught in adultery they were carrying out the law given to Moses by Yahweh; instead of rebuking those who were carrying out the law, Jesus should have condemned the law itself and rebuked his father who gave it. Jesus could have said: “This woman is of equal value to a man, so where is the man?” If Jesus would have set a precedent by speaking up and declaring that women are of equal value to men and deserve equal human rights, he could have changed the course of history with respect to women. Never in all of his words recorded in Scripture did Jesus ever resend one law with respect to women, nor did he ever condemn one atrocity against women commanded by Yahweh, whom he called his father. Under the Law of Moses a man could condemn a woman to a death by stoning if she could not prove her virginity upon marriage, was any such law written for men…of course not…did Jesus ever mention that? No. Also why would any compassionate being give such a barbaric law as stoning to begin with, those types of laws clearly come from the minds of cruel men?

For all the magnificent words spoken by Jesus about his love for humanity, he failed miserably when it came to promoting equal human rights for women. Because of his negligence in regards to women’s rights, the apostle Paul also refused to speak up for equality of women, and instead reaffirmed the secondary position of women being in subjugation to men and considered property…this in turn has led to the continued discrimination against women in the Christian church up until today. Just imagine what could have been accomplished by a few positive words on the equality of women spoken by Jesus? Many thousands of lives would have been saved during the witch hunts and it wouldn’t have taken two thousand years for women to gain equal rights (with no thanks given to the authors of the Bible). Not only was the status of women as property upheld by Jesus, but also the legitimacy of slavery was endorsed by him as well, which leads to the inevitable conclusion that the god Jesus called his father did not believe in human equality and by default Jesus himself also condoned the status of women as property. Jesus also never spoke out against the segregation in the temple where women were denied access beyond the area called the ‘Court of the Women” begging the question as to why the supposed god given plans for the temple included areas of segregation between men and women in the first place. Whether or not Jesus could have changed the arrangement of the temple, should not have stopped him from speaking out against the extreme bias that women were subject to … it didn’t stop him in other areas.

 

The Two Shall Become One:

Matt.19:3-12 The Pharisees also came unto him, tempting him, and saying unto him, Is it lawful for a man to put away his wife for every cause? And he answered and said unto them, Have ye not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female, And said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh? Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder. They say unto him, Why did Moses then command to give a writing of divorcement, and to put her away? He saith unto them, Moses because of the hardness of your hearts suffered you to put away your wives: but from the beginning it was not so. And I say unto you, Whosoever shall put away his wife, except it be for fornication, and shall marry another, committeth adultery: and whoso marrieth her which is put away doth commit adultery. His disciples say unto him, If the case of the man be so with his wife, it is not good to marry. But he said unto them, All men cannot receive this saying, save they to whom it is given. For there are some eunuchs, which were so born from their mother’s womb: and there are some eunuchs, which were made eunuchs of men: and there be eunuchs, which have made themselves eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven’s sake. He that is able to receive it, let him receive it.

A careful reading of the above discourse by Jesus on the unity of marriage will disclose a theme that is not only out of character with Jewish thought in the Old Testament, but also contrary to the actions of the God inspired patriarchs. Starting with Abraham who took Hagar as his second wife it becomes a common occurrence throughout the Old Testament for men to have multiple wives, which is totally at odds with the idea of becoming one flesh, as presented in Genesis and reiterated by Jesus. Also the phrase “the twain shall become one” only occurs once in the entire Old Testament. Polygamy is never frowned upon by Yahweh, but rather encouraged as in the case of Jacob with his four wives from whom the twelve tribes of Israel were born…conflicting greatly with the idea of one man, one woman equals one flesh. Anyone who is familiar with Scripture knows the account of Yahweh giving the wives of King Saul to David (2Sam.12:7-11) and then giving those same wives of David to his son Absalom to rape as punishment for David’s sins (2Sam.16:21-22), clearly showing Yahweh had no problem with multiple wives, adultery, or rape.

Another out of character theme touched upon by Jesus is the answer given to the query of the disciples “If the case of the man be so with his wife, it is not good to marry” to which Jesus responded “He that is able to receive it, let him receive it.” Implying that the best way for man is to be a eunuch for the kingdom of heaven, which again is contrary to the proclamation in Genesis 1 “Be fruitful and multiply”. Nowhere throughout the Old Testament is celibacy encouraged, even the priests were expected to marry, albeit within their own tribe. So, where did this idea of celibacy, and monogamy which was also promoted by Paul, enter into the biblical picture?

This passage in Matthew also conflates the idea of God creating male and female (chapter 1) with the reason that a man leaves his father and mother is to cleave to his wife (chapter 2). First off, the idea of God creating male and female in his image comes from Genesis 1:27 and says nothing of man and woman being joined together as one flesh in marriage which doesn’t occur until Genesis 2:24. Why Jesus conflated the two concepts and spoke of them as being one idea when it directly conflicts with the explicit biblical approval of polygamy I don’t know. Obviously,  it was news to the Pharisees who queried Jesus on the matter. Another well know fact is the incongruity of the two biblical stories of creation in Genesis 1 and 2 which I’m Jesus was well aware of, yet he spoke as if both accounts were valid.

Another matter that comes to mind is that of divorce, in the same passage Jesus says that Moses allowed divorce because of the hardness of mans heart. The reality of the matter is that in Deuteronomy it says that God gave Moses all the laws including the one on divorce, so if one is to believe the Bible it wasn’t Moses who allowed divorce it was God who gave Moses that law. If that is the case then the claim by Jesus which says not one “jot” or “tittle” shall be changed from the law is also false, because Jesus changed the law on divorce from that of being acceptable to that of causing one to commit adultery. Did Yahweh whom Jesus claimed was his father, change his mind from that of permitting and encouraging multiple wives and divorce, to forbidding it lest you be called an adulterer? Just another point in my long list of reasons showing why the god of the bible cannot be who he is claimed to be, but rather a construct of the minds of men.

Speaking of adultery, the famous verses in the New Testament concerning the woman caught in the very act come to mind. While it’s all fine and dandy that Jesus forgave the woman who was brought before him, has anyone ever considered that in order for her to be caught in the act of adultery there had to also be a man? So, where was her partner in crime? Nary is a word spoken as to the whereabouts of the man this woman was caught in adultery with.

John 8:3-6 And the scribes and Pharisees brought unto him a woman taken in adultery; and when they had set her in the midst, They say unto him, Master, this woman was taken in adultery, in the very act. Now Moses in the law commanded us, that such should be stoned: but what sayest thou? This they said, tempting him, that they might have to accuse him. But Jesus stooped down, and with his finger wrote on the ground, as though he heard them not. So when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her.

If Jesus truly was concerned about equality for women, he would have exposed the gender bias of accusing only the woman. Of all the sermons that I have heard preached on these passages in John, I do not ever recall hearing anyone mention the fact that only the woman stood condemned. This type of bias is quite common once one begins to look for it.

 

Chapter 9

Morality and Conditional Love

 

When most people think of the Bible they think in terms of it being a moral guidebook, but is it really? The Bible does not teach morality per say, it teaches obedience. Starting with its first book, the Bible declares the most important law is obedience, and shows that it was solely because of disobedience that Adam and Eve were banished from their garden paradise, cursed by Yahweh, and the cause of mankind’s sin. No lesson of morality is contained in this story, or taught in either their disobedience or the curses that were decreed upon them, just the actions of a vengeful god and his demand for obedience. Adam was told by Yahweh that death would be the outcome of eating from the Tree, yet death did not happen…rather curses were decreed upon them from an angry god for their disobedience. Eve was cursed for desiring to be wise, because she didn’t obey Yahweh’s command, yet Solomon was praised for desiring to be wise and given abundant wisdom…the only difference was gender and obedience.

Gen.3:6 And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.

1King 4:29 And God gave Solomon wisdom and understanding exceeding much, and largeness of heart, even as the sand that is on the sea shore.

Throughout the Bible obedience is taught as the number one virtue to gain right-standing with God, which in most cases has nothing to do with morality. Even the Ten Commandments which are viewed as ten moral laws, for the most part have nothing to do with morality. Only three of the Ten Commandments have anything to do with morality…murder, stealing, and adultery.

1Sam. 15:22 And Samuel said, Hath the LORD as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams.

Jer.7:23 But this thing commanded I them, saying, Obey my voice, and I will be your God, and ye shall be my people: and walk ye in all the ways that I have commanded you, that it may be well unto you.

Even in the New Testament we find that obedience is held in highest regard and used as the standard to gain God’s love. The obedience Jesus learned through his suffering is the reason Paul gives for our righteousness, if we obey his words. Adam and Eve’s disobedience on the other hand is the reason for our sin.

Rom. 5:19 For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous.

Heb. 5:8-9 Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered; And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him;

The theme of God loving his creation based solely on obedience is one that I think has been largely overlooked in favor of focusing on the unconditional aspect of salvation. The problem is that the gift of salvation is not really unconditional, because in order to participate in the benefits of salvation one must obey the command of belief, without the belief factor no salvation is acquired.

John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

When something is truly given unconditionally – like how we love our children – it doesn’t matter if they believe certain things about us as parents, we still love them. The above verse poses a very important question in this regard, which is…if God loved the whole world why did he not spread the knowledge of himself equally to all humans, instead of to just one particular group of people? When truths are discovered in science about the world and how it functions they don’t just pertain to one race of people, they apply to all. The same should hold true for God if he does exist…there would be no reason for his presence to remain a secret, or a mystery revealed only to a select few, who then are responsible for spreading it abroad. The reality of God’s existence shouldn’t depend on the validity of ancient texts, or the mindsets of primitive people, yet this is exactly what has happened with religious doctrines that convince the believer that special or magical qualities are acquired only through belief in them.

Exo.19:5 Now therefore, if ye will obey my voice indeed, and keep my covenant, then ye shall be a peculiar treasure unto me above all people: for all the earth is mine:

 Our moral intuitions seem to be hardwired into our brains and developed through our culture, which is why there is a continual cognitive dissonance between many of the seemingly immoral passages we read about in the Bible and our own internal sense of what is moral. I know for me it was an ongoing struggle to try and resolve the gross immoralities found in the Bible with my innate values of right and wrong. Another point of importance is the ever-changing value of biblical laws, while always giving merit to obedience no matter what the command.

2Cor. 10:6 And having in a readiness to revenge all disobedience, when your obedience is fulfilled.

The trap the faithful become locked into is that of obedience to authority, which supersedes the content of the orders in favor of obedience. The New Testament promotes the idea of strict obedience to those in authority, no matter what the nature of that authority. Slaves are to obey their masters in all things, women are to obey their husbands, and children their parents because obedience is the ultimate measure by which we are judged. One is not taught to be guided by moral intuitions, but solely by the rules that are meted out from those in positions of authority that have been arbitrarily given to them by their god. It is not because they earned their positions through merit, but for reasons such as being born male. A father must be given honor by his children no matter how abusive he is, merely because he is their father.

Col.3:18 Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as it is fit in the Lord…20 Children, obey your parents in all things: for this is well pleasing unto the Lord…22 Servants, obey in all things your masters according to the flesh; not with eyeservice, as menpleasers; but in singleness of heart, fearing God:

In all areas of life biblical rules give the utmost value and importance to obedience, which is why throughout history the Church has been able to inflict so much damage upon people, especially women. It matters not the nature of the rules they decree, only that they are obeyed.  The Bible declares that God will take vengeance upon those who do not obey the Gospel (the good news of Jesus) and will punish them with everlasting destruction…this is the message that is reiterated over and over again in the New Testament – obedience trumps everything!

2Thess.1:8-10 In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ: Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power; When he shall come to be glorified in his saints, and to be admired in all them that believe (because our testimony among you was believed) in that day.

1Pet.4:17 For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God?

The conclusion that must be drawn from the opening question, “Is the Bible a Moral Guidebook?” is that one is indeed hard pressed to find much related to morality within the pages of the Bible. Obedience is the key focus, and all benefits come from being obedient, while on the other hand moral commands are occasionally found as bi-products of the many laws and rules given by Yahweh. So, what it really comes down to is either being obedient to Yahweh’s commands, or following your own innate sense of morality…and let me tell you there will be many times that the two will conflict, because what your conscience tells you is right will go against what the Bible tells you is right.

The Bible would be better classified as a “military handbook” instead of a moral guidebook, because what it teaches is obedience to orders without questioning the morality of those orders. The mindset of the men who authored the Bible was that of military leaders where obedience to authority was of prime importance. All the sacrifices and all the killing of pagans was only about obedience, it had nothing to do with morality. In fact many times it was quite the contrary, much of the killing and raping of women that God commanded was horribly immoral, yet the Hebrew’s were told to OBEY!

Conditional Love:

 

The differences in motherly love versus fatherly love become quit clear if one digs into the nature of each. A mother’s love for her baby begins as one of an unconditional nature; she must love her offspring regardless, because without that unconditional love her offspring cannot survive. This unconditional love continues all through the childhood years, and more often than not a mother’s love remains unconditional for a lifetime. Motherly love is unconditional, it is the love given to a child with no expectations; it is not earned, and requires no work. Nothing is done to deserve this love; it is given merely because the child exists. The child is loved because he is, “I am loved because I am”…one finds this unconditional kind of love sorely lacking in the pages of Scripture.

Fatherly love on the other hand is many times based on a “conditional” love that must be deserved, it can be lost if one does not do what is expected. In the nature of fatherly love lies the fact that obedience becomes the main virtue and disobedience the main sin…its punishment the withdrawal of fatherly love. Since this love is conditional the child can do something to earn it, acquire it, or work for it. Its principle is “I love you because you fulfill my expectations” it says, “You did wrong and you must change your ways if you want me to like you.” The child is loved because he has earned it. This conditional love is the type of love one finds in the male god Yahweh, who is portrayed as, and called Father in Scripture. Jesus says of his father in John 12:26If any man serve me, let him follow me; and where I am, there shall also my servant be: if any man serve me, him will my Father honour”, showing the conditional aspect of earning God’s love.

Throughout the Bible one finds that God’s love is based on the condition of obedience, starting in the Garden of Eden and ending with the Salvation story. The earning of love through obedience is very clear in the story of Adam and Eve and their punishment is the withdrawal of god’s presence and banishment from the garden. Most who are familiar with Christian theology readily accept the principle of conditional love as applied in the Garden story; it is only when applied in the New Testament that the waters get a bit murky. Most Christians who think of God’s love in the New Testament do so in terms of it being unconditional, by quoting verses like John 3:16For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” which on the surface seems to be unconditional in the sense that God’s love applies to everyone, but…does it really? Upon closer inspection the answer is in the negative. The subtle condition that is smuggled in without notice is that of belief. Only those who “believe” in God are granted everlasting life, so the condition of receiving his love is belief in him…otherwise you will be punished with denial of eternal life. Anytime a requirement is given, the term unconditional cannot be legitimately used, because a condition must be met before the offer will be given. Another verse that reveals the type of conditional love that God has is in John 10:17Therefore doth my Father love me, because I lay down my life, that I might take it again.” Here Jesus reveals the conditions of why his father loves him; it is because he was obedient in laying down his life, which leads me to another point…

John 12:25 He that loveth his life shall lose it; and he that hateth his life in this world shall keep it unto life eternal.

One can only love another to the extent that one loves themselves, never can it be more. This holds true for loving God, one can only love God to the extent that they love themselves, so if a person cannot love his own life and retain eternal life how could one possibly love God? One can only love God if one can love themselves. Even the greatest commandment of loving God seems to be explicitly saying that one must love God with everything they have in themselves, and then love their neighbor as themselves, so ultimately you “love” your neighbor and God with the same self-love.

Mark 12:33 And to love him with all the heart, and with all the understanding, and with all the soul, and with all the strength, and to love his neighbour as himself, is more than all whole burnt offerings and sacrifices.

We are taught from the Bible to love God unconditionally and with everything we have, yet we find throughout the pages of Scripture that God loves us in return only conditionally. Does that not seem odd? Maybe it’s time to re-think some of the things we’ve been taught about the quality of the Biblegod’s love to get a clearer picture of his true nature. What if we compared the nature of God’s love to how a mother loves her baby, I think you would be surprised to find that the type of love God expresses in the Bible is not the unconditional love of a mother, but rather it is a conditional type of love most commonly found in fatherly love, which once again is totally in keeping with his masculine portrayal by the male minds that created him.

 

 

Killing of the innocent

 

This section is being devoted to the killing of the innocent. I have gathered together a good number of verses that speak of the direct slaughter of infants and children recorded in the Bible as being ordered by Yahweh. The first question that arises is how can a god be considered moral that purposely targets children to be tortured and killed? This is a question that many faithful Christians have struggled with. One of the common conclusions that people arrive at is the trite adage of “God’s ways are higher than ours” which in my opinion is an obscene justification for horrendous immoral behavior. My list begins with the story of Flood in which Yahweh is said to have flooded the earth and destroyed all life except for Noah, his family and the animals on the ark. Supposedly this mass destruction is done because Yahweh is disappointed in the continual wickedness of humans. I’ll close this chapter with a short list of some of the most horrific verses that deal with Yahweh slaughtering the innocent.

Gen.6:17 And, behold, I, even I, do bring a flood of waters upon the earth, to destroy all flesh, wherein is the breath of life, from under heaven; and every thing that is in the earth shall die.

Num.31:17 Now therefore kill every male among the little ones, and kill every woman that hath known man by lying with him. But all the women children, that have not known a man by lying with him, keep alive for yourselves.

Josh 6:20-21 So the people shouted when the priests blew with the trumpets: and it came to pass, when the people heard the sound of the trumpet, and the people shouted with a great shout, that the wall fell down flat, so that the people went up into the city, every man straight before him, and they took the city. And they utterly destroyed all that was in the city, both man and woman, young and old, and ox, and sheep, and ass, with the edge of the sword.

1 Samuel 15:3 Go, now, attack Amalek, and deal with him and all that he has under the ban. Do not spare him, but kill men and women, children and infants, oxen and sheep, camels and asses.

Psalm 137:9 Happy shall he be, that taketh and dasheth thy little ones against the stones.

Isa.13:13,16-18 Therefore I will shake the heavens, and the earth shall remove out of her place, in the wrath of the LORD of hosts, and in the day of his fierce anger…Their children also shall be dashed to pieces before their eyes; their houses shall be spoiled, and their wives ravished. Behold, I (the Lord) will stir up the Medes against them, which shall not regard silver; and as for gold, they shall not delight in it.Their bows also shall dash the young men to pieces; and they shall have no pity on the fruit of the womb; their eye shall not spare children.

Isa.14:21 Prepare slaughter for his children for the iniquity of their fathers; that they do not rise, nor possess the land, nor fill the face of the world with cities.

Jer.13:12&14 Therefore thou shalt speak unto them this word; Thus saith the LORD God of Israel,…And I will dash them one against another, even the fathers and the sons together, saith the LORD: I will not pity, nor spare, nor have mercy, but destroy them.

Hosea 13:16 Samaria shall become desolate; for she hath rebelled against her God: they shall fall by the sword: their infants shall be dashed in pieces, and their women with child shall be ripped up.

Nah.3:5 Behold, I am against thee, saith the LORD of hosts; and I will discover thy skirts upon thy face, and I will shew the nations thy nakedness, and the kingdoms thy shame…10) Yet was she carried away, she went into captivity: her young children also were dashed in pieces at the top of all the streets: and they cast lots for her honourable men, and all her great men were bound in chains.

Exo.10:1 And the LORD said unto Moses, Go in unto Pharaoh: for I have hardened his heart, and the heart of his servants, that I might shew these my signs before him:…11:5 And all the firstborn in the land of Egypt shall die, from the firstborn of Pharaoh that sitteth upon his throne, even unto the firstborn of the maidservant that is behind the mill; and all the firstborn of beasts…12:29-30 And it came to pass, that at midnight the LORD smote all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, from the firstborn of Pharaoh that sat on his throne unto the firstborn of the captive that was in the dungeon; and all the firstborn of cattle. And Pharaoh rose up in the night, he, and all his servants, and all the Egyptians; and there was a great cry in Egypt; for there was not a house where there was not one dead.

 


Chapter 10

Some Final Words on Bias

Many more examples of male bias could be shown, but I think the idea has been presented with crystal clarity. The Bible is a book written from the minds of men who mapped their male egos onto a deity, they were part of a society that was structured on patriarchy and domination. It was part of their culture to view women as inferior, thus the image of “God” they created would be a superior masculine god, whose rules would be structured on the system of male dominance and female inferiority. The hierarchical order that the Bible displays is exactly what one would expect if the assumption is made from the onset that it was written by men promoting a cult of masculinity. It is only when one assumes that that the Bible was written from men who received inspiration from the one true god that a multitude of conflicting problems arise. Sadly, what biblical teachings have done is to sanction and reinforce man’s natural inclination to control and dominate women. The masculine mindset that says control of a woman’s body is to be put in the hands of men is what we find promoted in the Bible…this needs to be condemned in the strongest language. Every individual is the sole owner of their own body, no deity or person has the right to give that ownership to another individual as are common in the laws given in the Bible. Women and girls are put under the ownership and ruler-ship of men, and have no freewill in determining the use of their own bodies; this is a most egregious abuse of human freedom imaginable and should be soundly condemned. According to biblical standards because women were considered the property of men even the choice of whether or not to have children was determined by the man.

The creator god of the Bible is portrayed as the omnipotent designer of the whole cosmos, which was quite different from the polytheistic belief that was prevalent at the time of the biblical narrative. This concept of one god being the creator of all and having no beginning was a novel idea for the people of that time. The norm was that of a pantheon of gods who were always vying for power, warring with each other, and creating new gods, or parts of the cosmos from a defeated god. When the archetypal idea of one god arose in the minds of the early Hebrews they needed a system to base this concept on. Of course, the first thing is to draw from those customs and beliefs they came out of, and since there was only one god its gender needed to be male, whereas in the pantheon of gods there were male gods and female goddesses. This male god of the Hebrews would then order his creation the way a male perceives the proper system to be structured, thus we have the male hierarchical order of the Bible. Consequently, only men received direct instructions from their god on what the composition of his laws were to be…so, it is no wondered they are skewed towards male dominance.

With all these examples of male bias given the verdict is clear and precise…from its inception the Bible was formed and created from the minds of ancient man, depicting a god whom they created in their male image and after their likeness. My whole premise is grounded on facts that the Bible reveals in a very lucid way. There is no need for speculation or presumptions; the biblical authors are not trying to hide their intent, but rather they promote this inequality as being the true hierarchical order of the cosmos. This of course does not mean that the Bible does not contain wisdom, and truth…which I most certainly think it does, rather it declares the Bible to be amazing work of ancient literature, thus freeing the mind to explore its ideas…instead of trapping the unsuspecting soul in a prison that stifles the imagination.

For far too long women have meekly accepted the male oriented Bible as a given without questioning its foundation, its time to open your eyes and see it for what it is instead of blindly following in the path of men who see no problem with a male biased Bible because they are men. It’s time for the Christian community to recognize that women’s rights are human rights and the Bible is an egregious offender of them!

 

Religion and Violence

Religion is not the only scourge that has propagated violence against women, but it is one of the major players. Violence against women within the parameters of male based religions has flourished throughout history and will only end when those doctrines are either completely overhauled or dumped in the dustbin of history. The first step in attaining equal human rights for women is recognition of the problem, which is what I hope this book in some small way has helped to accomplished. Thomas Paine, who wrote The Age of Reason said: “I moreover believe, that any system of religion that has anything in it that shocks the mind of a child, cannot be a true system.” If this saying has any validity it condemns much of the Bible as being a false system of belief. Jesus himself said that anyone who offends a child would be better off with a millstone hung about his neck, yet the Old and New Testaments are full of offensive actions commanded by Yahweh that would shock even the most hardened of adults let alone a child.

Luke 17:2 It were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he cast into the sea, than that he should offend one of these little ones.

The type of patriarchal society that the teachings of the Bible has shaped is one where men think that it is the natural order for them to be the rulers over women and that violence is an acceptable means by which to impose their authority. From cover to cover the Bible is filled with barbaric laws that deny equal human rights to half the population merely because they are female. A cult of masculinity has been developed by men who used their idea of a male deity as supreme law giver who decreed bias as the norm. Throughout the centuries this masculine mindset has been continually reinforced by the religious teachings that support gender bias.

Concluding Syllogism:

1.  The Bible is biased toward the male.
2.  If God inspired the Bible.
3.  Then God is biased toward the male.

Or:

  1. A true god must be just.
  2. The Biblegod is biased.
  3. Therefore the Biblegod is not a true god.

So, if the Bible is biased toward the male, and the god who inspired the Bible is biased toward the male, then the only conclusion I can come to is that the Bible was written by men, and if the Bible was written by men with a male bias why should I believe their description of god to be valid? If I as a mere human can show more compassion, equality and justice than the Biblegod, how does that reflect on his nature?

As I have shown, over and over again the Biblegod not only sanctions sexism, but also ordains it…leading to the inevitable conclusion that the god of the Bible is sexist and therefore a false god constructed in the minds of men and patterned after the male ego.

 

The Shame of Man

In the recorded history of humankind there has never been a society where men or boys were denied an education simply because of their gender, but women throughout history in patriarchal societies have not fared so well, continually struggling to gain human rights denied them by men. Women do not try and take human rights away from others as men have done to them, so why the disparity? It seems like the more power men gain the more they try and rob women of their human rights. Something is deeply wrong with men who think that they should own and control women’s bodies. It is truly a great shame upon the intelligence of men who continue to view the female gender as being inferior to their own. Some of the biggest offenders that have reinforced this erroneous thinking have been those in various religions. The founder of the Christian faith, the apostle Paul is a good example of how readily men follow these unethical and gender biased teachings without using their intelligence to condemn them. No man would ever be elected to any office today in a democratic country that held to the subjugation of women as taught by Paul in the New Testament. It is only fundamentalist religious groups that still adhere to the primitive male idea of dominating and controlling women. Those who hold to the idea of biblical authority are by default accepting all the bias and blatant sexism that the Bible promotes and supports. Jesus, Paul and all the other apostles and church leaders uncritically endorsed the laws of the Old Testament and taught compliance with the god spoken of in its pages…what does this tell us about them? What becomes very obvious is the intelligence level of men like Jesus and Paul, because for anyone to endorse the subjugation of women and deny them equal human rights reveals a serious lack of critical thinking. The mindset that is imported by default when one adheres to biblical teaching is evident in men who believe that ruler-ship over women is their god given right and that the Bible gives them the authority to rape women by saying god ordained it.

 

Here is a sample list showing how some of the leading church fathers of times past have interpreted what the Bible says about women. It is shameful indeed.

Anti woman quotes by Church Fathers

 

Martin Luther  ~ “If women become tired or even die, that does not matter. Let them die in childbirth–that is why they are here.”

Martin Luther  ~ “The word and works of God is quite clear, that women were made either to be wives or prostitutes.”

 

Martin Luther  ~ “God created Adam master and lord of living creatures, but Eve spoilt all, when she persuaded him to set himself above God’s will.’Tis you women, with your tricks and artifices, that lead men into error.”

 

Martin Luther ~ “Men have broad and large chests, and small narrow hips, and more understanding than women, who have but small and narrow breasts, and broad hips, to the end they should remain at home, sit still, keep house, and bear and bring up children.”

 

Martin Luther  ~”No gown worse becomes a woman than the desire to be wise.”

 

Saint Augustine of Hippo, Church Father, Bishop of Hippo Regius, 354 – 430 What is the difference whether it is in a wife or a mother; it is still Eve the temptress that we must beware of in any woman… I fail to see what use woman can be to man, if one excludes the function of bearing children.”

Augustine (354-430): “Woman was merely man’s helpmate, a function which pertains to her alone. She is not the image of God but as far as man is concerned, he is by himself the image of God.”

Thomas Aquinas, Saint, Doctor of the Church, 13th century ~ As regards the individual nature, woman is defective and misbegotten, for the active force in the male seed tends to the production of a perfect likeness in the masculine sex; while the production of woman comes from a defect in the active force or from some material indisposition, or even from some external influence.

St. Albertus Magnus, Dominican theologian and Doctor of the Church, 13th century Woman is a misbegotten man and has a faulty and defective nature in comparison to his. Therefore she is unsure in herself. What she cannot get, she seeks to obtain through lying and diabolical deceptions. And so, to put it briefly, one must be on one’s guard with every woman, as if she were a poisonous snake and the horned devil. … Thus in evil and perverse doings woman is cleverer, that is, slyer, than man. Her feelings drive woman toward every evil, just as reason impels man toward all good.

Tertullian, 2nd-3rd century Churchfather ~

In pain shall you bring forth children, woman, and you shall turn to your husband and he shall rule over you. And do you not know that you are Eve? God’s sentence hangs still over all your sex and His punishment weighs down upon you. You are the devil’s gateway; you are she who first violated the forbidden tree and broke the law of God. It was you who coaxed your way around him whom the devil had not the force to attack. With what ease you shattered that image of God: Man! Because of the death you merited, even the Son of God had to die… Woman, you are the gate to hell.

Tertullian (160?-220?): “Woman is a temple built over a sewer, the gateway to the devil. Woman, you are the devil’s doorway. You led astray one whom the devil would not dare attack directly. It was your fault that the Son of God had to die; you should always go in mourning and rags.”

Clement of Alexandria (150?-215?): “Every woman should be filled with shame by the thought that she is a woman.”

Clement of Alexandria excludes…intercourse with a…pregnant, barren, or menopausal wife and for that matter, with one’s wife ‘in the morning,’ ‘in the daytime,’ or ‘after dinner.’ Clement warns, indeed, that ‘not even at night, although in darkness, is it fitting to carry on immodestly or indecently, but with modesty, so that whatever happens, happens in the light of reason…’ for even that union ‘which is legitimate is still dangerous, except in so far as it is engaged in procreation of children. ”

John Wesley (1703-91): “Wife: Be content to be insignificant. What loss would it be to God or man had you never been born.”

Jerome (345?-420): “If it is good for a man not to touch a woman, then it is bad for him to touch one, for bad, and bad only, is the opposite of good.”

John Chrysostom (349-407): “Amongst all the savage beasts none is found so harmful as woman.”

John Calvin (1509-64): “Thus the woman, who had perversely exceeded her proper bounds, is forced back to her own position. She had, indeed, previously been subject to her husband, but that was a liberal and gentle subjection; now, however, she is cast into servitude.”

 

Seriously now, could any rationally thinking person actually believe the things that these men are saying to be true? Sadly, and much to mans shame many men do. I will say though it can’t all be blamed on religion, I believe the desire to dominate, control and blame women must already be present in the mindset of men that uncritically accept the sexist teachings of these religions. After all it was men who patterned the biblical god Yahweh and every other god after their own male egos. Any man who for one moment stops and uses his brain to think can come to no other conclusion than the fact that intellectually the genders are equal. The obvious fear that men must have who hold to gender bias, and those wishing to control women is a deep seated inferiority complex; thinking that by keeping women in subjugation they will appear superior. Do they not know that half the genes they carry in their bodies come from their mothers? Or do they think that somehow their superiority is contained in the Y-chromosome? Or maybe the problem is that they don’t think rationally and allow their male hormones to dictate their thinking. In every intellectual field of endeavor women have proved themselves to be equal to men. So, any man who still holds to the idea that men are intellectually superior, and have an innate god given authority to rule over women are sadly mistaken and a shame to their gender.

 

Wake up Women

As long as a woman regards the Bible as the charter of her rights, she will be the slave of man. The Bible was not written by a woman. Within its leaves there is nothing but humiliation and shame for her.   ~ Robert Ingersoll

For far too long women have settled for second best when it comes to rights afforded them in the Bible, because they have been deceived by men. The same lame reasoning and tired excuses are used over and over again, such as “The Bible gives women more rights than they had in other cultures of the same time period”, or “God’s natural order is for men to be the leaders”. These and countless other worn out justifications used by men to deny women their equal human rights, need to be rejected and exposed for what they are…constructions made from the minds of men who want to control women. It’s time for the women of the world to know that they are indeed entitled to the same human rights as men and to stand up for those rights, regardless of what an ancient book like the Bible says. The first place to start is by taking a second look at the masculine nature of the biblical god.

One of the worst aspects of the faith that the Bible teaches is in promoting the idea that one group of people (men) have the god given right to deny the other group (women) the same freedom of human rights that they enjoy. To be able to live up to ones full potential as a human is a right that all people should share regardless of gender, or race. We all share this planet equally, and all should partake in its abundance, the male gender has not been given exclusive rights to ruler-ship over the female gender as biblical teaching promotes. Unfortunately, for the believer the baggage that the Bible carries with it can never be discarded, because it is built into its patriarchal structure, which begins with a sole male god as creator.

So, women, it’s time to wake up and see the Bible for what it is…a book written by men, about a male god who decrees that women are to be denied equal human rights because the first woman Eve was responsible for humankind’s fall into sin, and for that original transgression all women are to be placed in subjugation to men and stripped of their equality. The Bible is a book about authority, obedience and ruler-ship…simple as that. The masculine warrior god Yahweh, rules over men and demands obedience while the men rule over the women with the authority given them by Yahweh and demand subjugation…that is the order of the kingdom of god and that is what the Bible is all about…AUTHORITY and RULER-SHIP.

There is not one place on earth where women have gained equal rights with men through religion, in fact quite the opposite has taken place. For as long as civilizations have existed and men have invented religions, human freedoms have been taken away because a supposed deity has decreed it so. Usually it is women and children who fare the worst in these patriarchal religions and never do they fare better. Why is it that in every male dominated culture women must fight for equal human rights? Isn’t it long past time for humanity to wake up and realize what religious indoctrination has and is doing to us? Only when the genders are treated with equal human rights because that is the right and moral thing to do will humanity truly rise to its potential.

All in all the Bible is a wasteland when it comes to women, grief, sorrow and the burdens of man are heaped upon her shoulders with nary a drop of moisture to sooth her thirty lips. The cry of the biblical woman is why was I born for such a painful life of struggle and toil? Has this god called Yahweh no mercy or care for the sorrow of womankind, is his hatred so great because of some ill perceived injustice that woman is cursed forever? It appears so…

The Bible breeds a mentality of gender bias and promotes violence as being the solution to most of humanities problems. The great irony that cannot be overlooked is that most of the biblical solutions for human wickedness are for problems it has created. The biblical writers have invented the idea of sin and in so doing the need for salvation to appease an angry god who wants to punish human disobedience with eternal torment in hell. All these ideas are made up from the minds of primitive men who want to control and deceptively gets “snuck” into human thought under the guise of divine decrees.

In order for a society to function in a balanced and egalitarian manner women must be allowed to participate fully in all areas of its operation, this is something that the Bible is sorely lacking in. Under biblical laws and decrees held to be given from Yahweh women are restricted from participating in, having any decision making authority, or representation whatsoever in many basic areas of life. Until people realize how detrimental to harmonious living the gender bias of the Bible is humanity as a whole will continue to suffer under its oppression.

Men who are raised in a culture where women are viewed as beings with lesser rights because of their gender create a societal mentality where the victim becomes the accused. Fathers propagate this cult of masculinity onto their son’s generation after generation by not instructing there sons on the sanctity of personal ownership of every individuals own body…and then wonder why men violate women. While the Bible is far from being the only culprit of male biased thinking, it remains at the top of the heap because of its privileged place as “God’s Word” in our modern society. This allows for its male biased values to saturate the thinking of people without their explicit knowledge of what’s going on.

I would like to leave my readers with a challenge: if you can, take the Bible and read it through as if it were an unknown book picked up off a library self…take note of what impressions you get from it and if you would ever consider it to be words from a deity that you could live by if you had not already been told so.

We humans do not ask to be born into this life and the best any human can do is to make this life as pleasant and good as possible for ourselves and others and anything that adds to our burdens should be avoided. This is not the case with the doctrines of most religions; their teachings only add to our hardships…especially those of women. All religions have come out of patriarchal societies, including Christianity and all patriarchal religions discriminate against women to one degree or another. A sure sign of a religion and its god being man made is if it lessens or compounds the struggles of life. True compassion and empathy serve to heighten the well-being of conscious life that should be the test of what give life its purpose and meaning. Denying equal human rights to women never promotes well-being, so the fundamental flaw that lies at the heart of all societies and religions that are patriarchal is their bias toward the male at the expense of the female. By its very nature the patriarchal mindset devalues women and restricts their full potential from being realized.

Oppressed in the Name of Religion

It is well known that women are oppressed worldwide and discriminated against for the sole reason of being female…in the majority of those cases the basis for that oppression is religion. Most religions throughout history have emerged out of patriarchal societies, having their origins in the imaginings of the male mind that seeks domination. This includes the three major religions of today…Judaism, Christianity and Islam which directly trace their genesis to the authors of the Old Testament scriptures called the Torah, or the five books of Moses, named after its supposed author. One of the commonalities that these religions share is their overt oppression, discrimination and subjugation of women, supposedly commanded by their male god. The degrees of oppression and subjugation vary, but they all share one common theme…their bias against women that traces back to the Garden story of Adam and Eve…where it says the woman was deceived first. Each patriarchal society that adopted and followed these beliefs subsequently imposed their own interpretations onto it. Why does religion have such an abysmal record when it comes to growth in the areas of human knowledge and  liberty of thought?  The Dark Ages is a good example of a period in history that was caused by religious doctrines and dogmas suffocating the ideas of creative thought.  Anytime a segment of society stifles and suppresses the pursuit of its thinkers to expand and reach for new horizons everyone ends up suffering.  A good definition of patriarchy is given by Allan Johnson in his book The Gender Knot, “A society is patriarchal to the degree that it promotes male privilege by being male dominated, male identified and male centered. It is also organized around an obsession with control and involves as one of its aspects the oppression of women.”

Modern, liberal forms of Christianity have slowly lost much of their bias and oppression toward women, but the idea of submission of women still remains strong in the fundamentalist branches. This is to be expected because the fundamentalists adhere more closely to the teachings found in the Bible. Unless women are comfortable with the idea of a religion whose male god created females as inferior and set up a system of hierarchical rule by men (patriarchy), thus putting them in a position to be oppressed by men, the validity of the Christian religion should be questioned. The tenets of the Christian faith do accurately state that women are to be in submission to men by decree of its god, so one cannot legitimately object to it while claiming to be a faithful fundamentalist Christian. If you are a Christian woman and a Christian man tells you according to the Bible you are forbidden from teaching a man and you are to be in submission to men, he is correct according to those teachings. This is where critical thinking should enter the picture. Does it seem plausible that a creator god would be male and as such only speak his revelations only to men, even those concerning women? And of those revelations given to men we see that many cause men to oppress women and deny them equal rights which only are only benefiting to men.

The deist, who began to prominently diverge from the theist during the Enlightenment period, in many ways has the advantage over the theist by not being chained to a particular religion, or god; rather they are free to use their minds to think critically in an open manner, not fettered by dogma and doctrine. Theistic religions oppress the masses by imposing upon them rigorous disciplines that burden the body with rituals, thus consuming one’s waking moments with fears of not making the mark, they are in a sense man made inventions for control. The misery of religion dulls the imagination and teaches that blind faith is a virtue, but in reality it is wrapped in suffering and pain. When a mind is constrained by doctrines and dogmas it becomes suffocated and stifled and what was free becomes oppressed…this is the plight of the theist whose god is but a set of propositions that must be obeyed. Once eyes are opened and senses cleared from theistic belief life becomes the artist’s pallet on which to paint deliverance from the oppression of religion. The deist and the free thinker is unfettered to draw from her innermost desires and passions without restrictions or restraint. Theists bring division instead of unity because each clan and tribe has their own particular god with their own particular decrees in which punishment is the control method and meted out if not obeyed.

Most theistic religions like Judaism, Christianity and Islam are patriarchal and develop a “priestcraft” or ruling body that is exclusively men who are the receivers and teachers of the divine decrees, thus keeping the laity at their mercy, especially women. The Bible contains a history of humanities childhood with all the bullying and selfishness of immature minds. Now that humanity has matured why are so many still beholden to follow an immature message given from civilizations infancy? Children are notorious for their merciless cruelty because they lack the full self-awareness that comes with maturity; this seems to be the oppressive manner in which the biblical god is portrayed in much of Old Testament history. In the New Testament, god begins to emerge into adulthood and manifests far different characteristics than what is portrayed in the Old Testament…this is a beginning, but sadly Christianity is now stuck in the first century with all its archaic patriarchal chauvinism against women.

Religions lock morality levels to a past time in humanities infancy instead of allowing moral values to evolve to higher levels as our human race matures. Higher intelligence levels lead to the manifestation of higher morals in society and as our understanding of the world around us rises so does the way we view our fellow man. It is religious doctrines and dogmas that compel otherwise good people who care deeply to deny others their human rights and do harmful acts to them simply because they are taught that god requires it of them. The sacred texts of Judaism, Christianity and Islam all endorse discriminatory systems like patriarchy, misogyny, slavery, xenophobia, and homophobia that human rights movements have battled against over the centuries…this should tell us something about the oppression of religion. When one looks back through the recorded history of civilization and across cultural boundaries a clear theme of the male domination of women becomes apparent. Comparing that to the fact that all the major religions that oppress women have been started by men it stands to reason that the gods of those religions are also created by men and should be abandoned.

Enlightenment begins with the freedom to think and use one’s mind to its full potential, only then can humanity rise above the encumbrances that weigh them down. Religion by nature oppresses the capacity for free thought in lieu of doctrines that structure mans thinking into strict methods which serve only to burden ones being with propositions that cannot possibly be realized. If on the other hand people are free to follow their integrity in pursuit of happiness and well-being, the good for all humans will be manifest in this life instead of some mythological afterlife that has no bearing on anything in this world. When people are allowed to embrace their humanity letting it unfold to express their true feelings…then the world can be healed and half of its population will stop hurting the other half in the name of religion.

 

7 Responses to “The Book”

  • Marc:

    Rose, you really should have this bound into a PDF or published as an e-Book.

    This is a terrific piece of research.

  • Cathy:

    I want every woman on the planet to have access to this book.
    It can break the chains of bondage for many women.
    Thank-you.

  • Rose:

    Thank you Cathy for stopping by to comment. Feel free to share this book as far and wide as you like … :-) My desire is to open as many eyes as possible to the horrific human rights abuses and gender bondage found in the Bible.

  • Katie:

    Thank you so much for writing this. I have been trying for a long time to put into words what felt wrong to me with the religion I was taught. I have struggled to love a book and a god that are unlovable to me, because I was told they are supposed to be good and lovable. I knew for a long time that I was trying to rationalize things and defend things that were difficult to rationalize or defend. I knew in the book and in the church I was noticing patterns, morally objectionable things, and logical fallacies that I would not accept or let slide in any other facet or context in my life.
    I struggled with these feelings and thoughts, but they went around in a circle. I was thinking that it looked like people wrote this to suit their own purposes but then the question was, is there a loving and just deity who tried to get the word out, but people changed it to suit their own purposes, or is there not one at all? If so, how on earth am I supposed to know what this deity wants or what is good to this deity if I can’t trust anything written by people to not be biased and bent to suit their own purposes? So it has to come from me. That’s a scary thought at first when you thought you had a guidebook your entire life. But you are right, there is little regarding actual morality in that book.
    This book you wrote broke the pattern of circular thoughts and allowed me to come to a conclusion: the contents of the bible are not something I can rationalize or defend. This did not come from a loving or just deity. Maybe there is one, but if so, this did not come from that source. I will simply try my best to do the things that bring me and others feelings of well-being, love, and peace.

    • Rose:

      Hi Katie, I am so thankful that my book has helped you to see the bondage that has entrapped so many of us. It was such a relief for me when the spell was finally broken, because I no longer had to try and justify or rationalize the horrendous moral atrocities contained in the Bible. If there is some sort of higher power it most certainly isn’t anything like the god portrayed in Scripture and I’m sure it would have no problem making itself known to us.

      The most any of us can do is treat ourselves and others with kindness,compassion and equality and do our best to make this world a friendlier place to live, which is certainly NOT what the Bible teaches.

      Best wishes to you on your journey in search of truth,
      Rose

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