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Same Sex Marriage as Christian Rite

2009-12-16 00:14:21.484643+00 by Dan Lyke 5 comments

[ related topics: Religion Erotic Sexual Culture Sociology Marriage ]

comments in descending chronological order (reverse):

#Comment Re: made: 2009-12-17 17:58:43.978141+00 by: Dan Lyke

I remember a particularly clueless English teacher deliberately trying to make the case that Romeo and Juliet hadn't had sex because "they didn't do those sorts of things back then".

Trying to look to historical portrayals of relationships and either trying to desexualize them or, as is the case with this article, sexualize them, often tells us more about the commenters than than historical fact.

Which, I think, ties in strongly to Mark's statements. And regarding "making love" having different meanings, the phrase "free love" meant roughly the same thing in the 1870s as it did in the 1970s.

#Comment Re: made: 2009-12-17 00:29:36.428155+00 by: Mark A. Hershberger

Ad fontes! The title "Office of Same-Sex Union" sounds anachronistic to me. And I'm not sure that people kissing each other really means much -- We kiss the dead during funerals, we kiss every person in the church during Forgiveness vespers and those around us during the passing of the peace. Conflating kissing or the phrase "sleeping together" with sex just seems prudish to me.

Even using "Lovers" to mean "people who have sex" seems anachronistic. In the early 20th century people talked about "making love" when they talked about romantic (but not sexual) activities.

The one bit that I find intriguing from the article (and this subject has been around for a couple of years) is the reference to "erastai” -- a term I remember from my freshmen literature classes in college.

Which is why I say ad fontes -- I'd much rather look at the source material and draw my own conclusions than rely on these somewhat tenuous assertions.

#Comment Re: made: 2009-12-17 00:09:14.289226+00 by: Mark A. Hershberger

Let's not stop there, m! Abraham got his servant girl pregnant, Lot's line was carried out via his daughters and Isaac had two wives. Pretty much none of that would be lawful now.

Well, Abraham could probably still get his servant pregnant without serious legal repercussions -- as long as he paid child support -- but he was evidently not even willing to do that.

Seriously, though, Mosaic law did say that it was the living brother's responsibility to provide for his sister-in-law by impregnating her so she would have children to care for her in her old age. This was evidently still in effect during Jesus time since (Matt 22) Jews who denied the resurrection of the dead tried to use this law to create an absurd situation from a sequence of dead brothers.

Later in the NT, though, Paul makes it clear that he considers someone who marries his (still-living?) brother's wife to be committing incest. This is based on Lev. 20:21, another part of the Mosaic law.

It seems clear that if the charges of incest are restricted to cases where blood relative is still living, then they're in line with the Mosaic law.

Not that any of that means much. No state will excuse killing your children just because they're disobedient, but the Mosaic law allows it. Anyone who considers the Bible a legal text is gonna find themselves in a bind pretty quickly.

#Comment Re: made: 2009-12-16 16:19:00.930651+00 by: petronius

It seems to me that one of Henry VIII's arguments for why his first marriage should be anulled was that since Catherine of Aragon's first husband was Henry's late brother Arthur, it was incestuous. Also, in Hamlet the melancholy Dane considers his mother's marriage to his uncle "damned, incestuous". Obviously opinions have changed over this topic over the years.

#Comment Re: made: 2009-12-16 15:34:28.656612+00 by: m

Such inconsistencies are not limited to homosexuality. Onan was killed for refusing to impregnate his dead brothers wife. Yet in some US states sex between in-laws was viewed as incest. Marriage between same, following divorce or death of the spouses, was forbidden. Don't know if such laws are still on the books.