Tag Archives: obsolete customs

American Christians, You Don’t Believe Or Practice What The Bible Says About Marriage

It’s absurd that Americans still quote the Bible at weddings and believe marriage is holy because the Bible says so. America’s beliefs and laws regarding marriage are so starkly different from the authors of the Bible, they’re irreconcilable.

 

In America, marriage usually works like this:

Two people of any gender, who are over the age of 18, pick someone freely, get to know them, have sex, fall in love, and move in together. One person then asks the other to marry them, and they go to a courthouse where they pay for a marriage certificate, pay someone with marriage-granting credentials to preside over a ceremony where vows are exchanged, and then both parties’ assets become legally tied to each other. If the marriage is heterosexual, the woman will usually replace her last name with her husband’s last name, though she’s under no obligation to. They can get divorced for any reason, but they have to apply for a divorce license and jump through so much legal red tape they have to hire a lawyer to manage all the paperwork until they finally stand in front of a judge who legally terminates their marriage and often sets new laws for one or both parties to follow such as child visitation schedules, child support, alimony, etc. Courts tend to rule in favor of women more than men.

 

Marriage: Betting someone half your shit that you'll love them forever.

 

In ancient Jewish culture and the Torah, marriage works like this:

Any woman who has sex before marriage is stoned to death. Depending on the circumstances, any man who has sex before marriage will either be stoned to death or he’ll have to pay the girl’s father a bunch of shekels of silver. If a man rapes an unwed virgin, he has to buy her for fifty shekels of silver and may never divorce her.

There’s no legal age of consent. When a man wants to marry a girl or woman, he goes to her father and asks if he will sell his daughter to him. They agree on a price, and the groom pays the father. There is a ceremony, after which the husband takes his wife to his home and has sex with her. If she is a virgin, her hymen will bleed when it’s broken. After consummating the marriage, the husband will bring the bloody bed sheet out of the house for the community to see, and they’ll parade it through the streets in celebration. If it’s found that the bride is not a virgin, she’ll be brought in front of her father’s house and stoned to death by the community. Then the bride’s father will have to return the groom’s money and pay him more shekels of silver to make amends for selling a used product that was advertised as new.

Men are allowed to buy multiple wives, and they can own female slaves who aren’t their wives and have sex with them legally if their wife is barren. When the baby is born, the mother lays under the slave as she gives birth so that the wife is giving birth symbolically. If you’re the king of the theocracy God intended to rule the world, you can own as many wives and sex slaves as the nation’s taxes will pay for… as long as your wives and slaves are of Jewish descent.

Also, if a man has sex with a woman who is on her period, then they both have to be exiled. If anyone has sex with an animal or a member of the same sex, they’re to be put to death.

There are a few circumstances where divorce is legal, like adultery. Though, it’s not really divorce since the adulterer will be stoned to death. But if a woman manages to leave her husband, she probably won’t be able to remarry since she’s no longer a virgin, and since she’s a second-class citizen with almost no rights, this pretty much leaves her with only two career paths: forager or slave.

Deuteronomy 22: 13-29

Leviticus 20:13

Leviticus 20:18

1 Kings 11:1-3

 

"Biblical marriage: Buying a virgin sex slave from her father for a few shekels of silver."

 

So when Americans say marriage is holy because the Bible says so, they prove two things: One, they don’t know what the Bible says about marriage. Two, their moral code is an un-researched, unconsidered assimilation of pop culture, which is ignorant but still better than Biblical dogma.

American Christians can try to justify their apostasy by saying Jesus made the Torah obsolete, but just because he forgave us for breaking the law, doesn’t mean he abolished the law. The only two things Jesus changed about marriage are that you shouldn’t kill adulterers anymore, and the only justification for divorce is adultery. He and his followers did, however, reconfirm that slavery is still the natural order of life.

John 8: 1-7

Matthew 19: 3-8

Matthew 5: 17-19

Dozens of passages from the Old and New Testament that condone slavery

American Christians only follow the rules in the Bible that coincide with their modern beliefs. They ignore and excuse the rest. The fact that they believe in customs and laws that contradict the Bible proves they don’t believe in the Bible.

Not only is it possible to use common sense and secular reasoning to create moral rules outside of divine intervention, but Americans have been doing it all along. That’s how our modern customs and culture evolved from the primitive barbarism of Jewish theocracy, and the world is better since Jews and Christians stopped obeying the Bible. The less they pretend to, the better the world gets. Imagine how much better life would be if they just dropped the whole charade altogether and let us all be free to do whatever works best for us.

 

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Traditional Christian Values Are Neither Christian or Traditional

When modern American conservatives use the term “traditional family values” they’re not referring to “the way everyone here has always done things.” They mean “the way we do things right now.” And when they say “we” they mean “white, upper middle-class American Christians.”.

I don’t think it’s fair to everyone else for them to use the word “traditional,” because it only refers to the traditions of one group of people living in one country. It’s ignorant to demand all the people in the most diverse country in the world to follow “traditional” values… especially when you want them to follow your traditions instead of their own. Secondly, this one sliver of one country’s population has 3,000 years of traditions spanning several continents. And the traditions of that one culture has been changing for 3,000 years. So which stage of that cultural development should we stick with? Let’s analyze the history to figure out which time period they’re getting their traditions from.

In early middle eastern culture, when you got a wife you would have to pay the father a “bride price.” In some parts of Turkey, this is still required. I’m sure there are other places too. In modern times the concept of the bride price has been defended by saying it’s a gift to the parents or it proves you can provide for the wife. But you’re giving money to a person and getting a wife in return. That’s called buying. The people who wrote the Torah got their wives through paying a bride price. So the husband owned the wife, and he owned slaves too. He was allowed to beat both of them, and he was obligated to kill his wife if she was unfaithful. And he could kill his child if he/she was disobedient. Here’s an excerpt from Exodus 21:7-11:

“If a man sells his daughter as a servant, she is not to go free as menservants do. If she does not please the master who has selected her for himself, he must let her be redeemed. He has no right to sell her to foreigners because he has broken faith with her. If he selects her for his son, he must grant her the rights of a daughter. If he marries another woman, he must not deprive the first one of her food, clothing and marital rights. If he does not provide her with these three things, she is to go free, without any payment of money.”

 

Chart of Bible verses revearing marriage practices considered unethical today, including: Genesis 2:24, Genesis 38:6-10, Deuteronomy 22: 28-29, Numbers 31:1-18, Deuteronomy 21: 11-14, and Exodus 21:4

 

When Republicans refer to a “traditional” family, this is the earliest stage of that traditions. So technically speaking, values that stray from this model are liberal and heretical.

Fast forward a thousand years past Jesus’s death and observe Europe. Bride prices were largely replaced with dowries, which was a gift to the husband’s family. The dowry served two purposes. One, since women didn’t work they were a financial burden. The dowry offset the cost of keeping a woman. It also bribed men into marrying women since it was shameful to be unmarried. Still, love was rarely a reason to get married. It mainly about money and networking. Husbands were still the head of the household and could beat their wives and children. Wives were housewives. Even if they wanted to get a job they had very limited rights to work since the Bible established them as second-class citizens. The wedding ring came from Egypt a few hundred years after Jesus died, but they were made out of hemp at first, later became iron, later became gold. Rubies were the gem of choice for a while. Oddly, in 1 Timothy chapter 2, it says Christian women shouldn’t wear gold or pears but wedding rings are now gold. The Quakers don’t wear gold rings though because they follow the Bible better than most people. England outlawed slavery within its borders in 1102 A.D. but didn’t make slave trade illegal until 1802. So slaves were still a part of the family well after Jesus died, which isn’t surprising because Jesus gave slavery his blessing by saying to treat your slaves well.

If you’re of Italian descent your pre-Christan era ancestors had another interesting Tradition. In a Roman household when a child was born the husband picked up the child to signify that he would accept it and allow it to live. If he didn’t pick it up the baby was killed or left to die. Romans also had slaves in the house. If your ancestors are from a Nordic country then in your ancestor’s traditional family they stole their wives from villages they pillaged.

Fast forward to the early years of the United States. Nothing much has changed. You could still own slaves, but you could only beat your wife with a rod as thick as your thumb. You could still beat your children, but you wouldn’t want to hurt them too bad, because they were put to work before the age of ten, and that was expected. Your elders lived with you until they died. Women were still second-class citizens and couldn’t vote, which was really the least of their problems as they were expected to be subservient to their husbands, which everyone believed was justified because not only did the book of Genesis say women were flawed but early Americans believed that science proved that since women had smaller brains they were biologically inferior to men. Women were expected to be barefoot in the kitchen and pregnant. Children were not allowed to question their parents no matter how idiotic their parents were.

And here we are today. If you’re a conservative American Christian, your great, great, great grandparents and every generation of your family before them, would view your beliefs about family as insanely liberal and a disgrace to God. Your great, great, great grandchildren and every generation after them, will look back at your generation and view your values as archaic and ridiculous as you view your great, great, great grandparents’ values.

Regardless of how funny and ironic that is, it’s beside the point. The point is that the conservative American concept of a traditional family is a figment of the imagination. It only reflects the traditions of one sliver of the American population, and it doesn’t even accurately reflect the traditions of that culture, at least, not if you go back more than half a lifetime.

 

If you enjoyed this post, you’ll also like these:

 

Agnosticism 
Atheism
Secular Living
Islam
The Bible is mythology
Christianity is Harmful to Society
Preaching, witnessing and arguing with Christians
Christian Culture
My Tweets About Religion

 


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