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View Diary: Why do so many folks here use the term "Old Testament" as code for barbarism? (265 comments)

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  •  I agree. (1+ / 0-)
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    However, with regard to the specific male sex act forbidden in the OT, does it not refer to fertility cult practices by the other various tribes surrounding the Hebrews at the time (the cross dressing as well). Didn't it have to do with idolatry as opposed to something immoral about male homosexuality?

    •  It does, (0+ / 0-)

      or rather that's a common interpretation that the ban was put in place to keep people from idolatry and (male) prostitution. But the plain language just says that the sex act is forbidden.

    •  We don't know (2+ / 0-)
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      librarisingnsf, CroneWit

      Many scholars think so, but since the text doesn't say we can't be sure.

      What we do know is that the modern understanding of male homosexuality was not present in the mind of the writers of the books.  People were not aware even of the concept of sexual orientation then.  The most visible forms of homosexuality in those days were either the cult practices you allude to or the Greek customs where even heterosexuals of the nobility would take young boys as quasi-slaves and have sex with them.

      Accordingly, the more liberal branches of Judaism don't forbid gay sex or gay partnerships.

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