Cherry Picking: The Fallacy of an Inconsistent Hermeneutic

Man tattoos Lev. 18:22 to his arm.

Man tattoos Lev. 18:22 to his arm.

A 2009 story ran in the Advocate (later picked up by other outlets) of a man named Marcel Gelmi who SO homophobic, and SO ready to use a passage from the Bible to defend his hatred of homosexuality, that he (I kid you not) TATTOOED LEVITICUS 18:22 ON HIS ARM in a highly visible area to remind all who look his direction that:

You shall not lie with a male as with a woman; it is an abomination. Leviticus 18:22

Furthermore, Gelmi is a friend of a suspect in a brutal hate crime in Queens, N.Y. He insists that the assault was, in fact, not a hate crime, but that the openly gay victim deserved what he calls a “beat down” explaining:

“I mean, I don’t want no man blowing me a kiss either. I mean, things happen,” he said. “I’ve been beat up like that too, but you don’t see me on the news and my family crying and this and that. Wounds heal.”

So, he tattooed the NRSV text of Lev. 18:22 on his arm, thereby justifying his stance on homosexuality.

However, this act of TATTOOING a particular verse to one’s arm (or on one’s mind and constantly repeating it like a mantra in debates) demonstrates perfectly one of the problems I have with the opponents of same-sex marriage (beyond the fundamentalist/literal reading of Iron Age social religious regulations and insisting that they become the modern law of a secular government supposedly separate from the rules of any specific religion like the Christian equivalent of Islamic Sharia law).

The problem is with “cherry picking,” or more specifically, the inconsistent use of a biblical hermeneutic (way of reading the Bible) to promote one particular verse in the Bible over, and at times, to the complete neglect, of another verse. (Of course, you can do this if you concede that the Bible contains numerous errors, is not infallible, and was written by a number of different people over a great period of time and was later edited and redacted by a host of anonymous others, and therefore some verses are more applicable and relevant than others. BUT since there is a very high correlation between people arguing against same-sex marriage and a belief in biblical inerrancy, that the Bible is the inspired and infallible “Word of God,” and that “All scripture is inspired by God and is useful for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness,” (2 Tim. 3:16) and therefore every command is apodictic and applicable for all time, I’m guessing many will succumb to the temptation of cherry picking.)

One argument I make consistently to those who would seek to use the Bible to suppress the civil rights of modern Americans is, “Choose a hermeneutic and stick to it. However you choose to read the Bible and interpret this verse, use that same interpretative hermeneutic to interpret all of its verses.” Put simply, you can’t read one verse in the Bible and say, “This is binding for all time,” and then read the very next verse in the same chapter of the same book and declare, “Well, that was just part of that particular cultural context. We don’t need to obey that command today.”

Choose a hermeneutic and stick to it.

(Again, we’re not talking about mixing genres here, where one verse is obviously poetry and the other verse is a list of apodictic legal commands. I’m speaking of two verses in the same literary genre and context.)

For instance, if you’re going to argue that “Wives, be subject to your husbands, as is fitting in the Lord.” (Col. 3:18) is still binding, as it is a command from the inspired apostle pseudo-Paul, then you probably should be prepared to defend the command that appears only a few verses later that says, “Slaves, obey your earthly masters in everything, not only while being watched and in order to please them, but wholeheartedly, fearing the Lord.” (Col 3:22) That is, it’s very difficult to argue that one verse is still binding and the other is not, and still maintain any semblance of credibility.

If you use one hermeneutic (e.g., “This is absolutely binding apodictic law for all time because that is the way God made it”) to interpret one verse, and use a completely different hermeneutic to interpret the very next verse (e.g., “Well, this is obviously terrible and was simply a part of the ancient context and therefore we don’t need to follow the teachings of this verse”), then you betray the glaring inconsistency of the way in which you read the Bible. You pick and choose (cherry pick) the verses you feel should still be binding upon modern civil society, while dismissing the verses you don’t agree with as dated and oppressive.

The point is that the Bible didn’t stop saying “Slaves, obey your masters” during the Civil War. It’s always been there. We simply learned to “read around” that verse. Most have learned and agreed to read the verse calling slaves to obey their masters as a product of an oppressive cultural context that endorsed slavery. But, here’s the good news: we changed! While the Bible still says “Slaves, obey your masters,” we took it upon ourselves to agree that slavery is evil (despite the fact that God himself gives instructions on how to make a slave in Exod. 21:2 and Exod 21:7) and to fundamentally ignore the verses that dictate how we should make slaves and that slaves should continue to obey their masters. We moved away from a literalist “God said it, that settles it” mentality and moved toward a progressive reading of the text that concedes that portions of the Bible may have captured some less than ideal elements of the ancient world, such as slavery or the victimless act of two consensual adults loving one another.

Because if you’re going to claim that there should be a law against same-sex marriage because God explicitly prohibited it a couple of thousand years ago, then it’s probably not a good idea to TATTOO a prohibition onto your arm that is only a few verses before this one:

You shall not make any gashes in your flesh for the dead or tattoo any marks upon you: I am the LORD. (Lev. 19:28)

I know of no New Testament command countermanding or otherwise “trumping” this law against tattoos. And yet, this particular tattooed “cherry picker” violates one outright command so that he can advertise his endorsement of another.

This individual is SO consumed with hate for homosexuals, that he violates the latter command against tattoos to express his disgust of the violation of the former.

Sheer and utter hypocrisy.

But that’s what we’ve come to expect from many who want to use the Bible to legislate against the single issue of same-sex marriage, while they completely ignore commands against other equally “abominable” practices, and do not seek to legislate against them.

And THAT is cherry picking and the fallacy of an inconsistent hermeneutic.

51 Responses

  1. About “slaves, obey your masters”, I have noticed that modern scholars sometimes talk about slaves in the Ancient World undermining the system by doing a bad job, or stealing from their masters. The suggestion is that this is a good thing because slavery is wrong and therefore rebellion is just. Yes, slavery is wrong, but surely within such a system, doing the best job you can and trying to live harmoniously within your household under the direction of your master would actually be ethically the correct way to behave. Do we really want Paul to be telling slaves to lie and steal from their masters (as was not uncommon)? Just a thought.

  2. What I always find interesting is that so-called “literalists” are not being literal at all but are relying on dated Baconian methods for scientific reasoning. That is to say, we only trust observable phenomenon in the way we interpret the world. Thus, if I can’t observe it in the text, it must not be true, but if it is in the text, then it must be true. Then they will go about gashing any post-Bacon scientific method that accurately predicts outcomes of how observable phenomenon interact. Then they will hop in their cars and drive off as if their own faulty understanding of science was what made that car run. The logic is exactly the same with everything. Some that *is* so *must* be so – unless of course it’s inconvenient. Case in point beyond the fool in this essay – Liberty University welcoming and endorsing a Mormon whose theology denounces that Jesus was fully God among other things. Gotta love how heresy and hypocrisy are so excusable in the hollow emotionalism of what we call “evangelicalism” when it supports the socialized power of the group. Idolatry at its finest.

  3. I would argue that your premise that the NT condones slavery is wrong. It simply recognises the reality of the times, and says if you find yourself in this situation, this is how you should react. Similar to the render unto Ceaser type of guidance. Servitude and humility were taught as positive traits in the image of Christ. Just because it never outright condemns slavery, doesn’t mean it necessarily condones it.

    Now that tattoo thing, I take comfort in that it’s in the HB and not the NT…

  4. Jordan, no the NT never mentions tattoos. While some will argue that 1 Corinthians 6:19 which says,

    “What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you…”

    argues against it, there is no compelling argument for the prohibition against tattoos ever being lifted. To the contrary, you do have Jesus saying,

    “If you wish to enter into life, keep the commandments.” Matt. 19:17


  5. Jordan, to this:

    “simply recognises the reality of the times”

    If that is a default position to the hermeneutic you may be employing, why should I have any gumption to change a social situation as it exists? Should Rosa Parks walked her butt back to the bus where she and other knew she “belonged” as the reality of her times dictated? SHould she have rendered unto Caesar gross dehumanization of her very person? Was the Gospel fueled civil rights movement in the US breaking Jesus’ teaching by riding buses during the Freedom Rides and entering places they should not have gone? Should people not seek to change any part of their reality because Jesus is asking us to be passive? Passivity is not what is meant by rendering something unto Caesar. If this were the case the Temple wall would not have been torn and the ground would not have shaken. Nor would Jesus have overturned tables to purify the Temple in the first place. It’s important not to interpret Jesus’ reinterpretation of the Law as for us to be passive.

  6. Drew,

    I think you’re misinterpreting pacifism. Civil disobedience is a strong component of it to empower change. That is exactly what Rosa Parks and Martin Luther King employed to make a difference.

  7. There is no difference between this tattoo and a swastika. They both convey the same meaning; the absolute supreme authority of the aryan heterosexual.

  8. I think this really falls under the banner of using the Wholly Babble to justify your own particular pathological predilection. We may call it “Inconsistent Hermeneutics”, but it’s just another way that people with a pathological or psychotic agenda can hide behind the respect given to religious books generally. Ditto with jihadists, creationists, wife beaters, shari’a enforcers, etc, etc, etc. For the most part, people who hide behind religious dicta like this need psychiatric help, not argument or discussion.

    And the apologists make me ashamed to be part of the same species.

    To switch trains of thought : Rather than “God said it…that settles it”, I’d like to see something like :

    An unknown person pretending to be someone they weren’t wrote it,
    For thousands of years, groups of unknown male misogynists redacted it,
    That settles it!

    Peace out. :=)

  9. […] a recent blog post, Dr. Robert Cargill, took his turn in throwing a young and admittedly zealous young man under the bus for tattooing his […]

  10. Although I disagree with Dallas Theological’s S. Daniel Owen, he has taken the time to write a thoughtful response to my essay. Do give it a read.

    Many of his critiques don’t address hermeneutic per se (like the definitions of civil rights and hate crimes, and the lack of a cited statistical study directly addressing the correlation b/t inerrancy/infallibility and an opposition to same sex marriage, although I do believe this correlation is solid based upon numbers of those opposing SSM and believing in inerrancy).

    One point addressing hermeneutic (Pt. III): I don’t believe that Matt. 19:17’s “If you wish to enter into life, keep the commandments.” should be interpreted “Keep only those commandments that I or my followers have explicitly of generally mentioned or repeated.” The NT is pretty clear on the commands it countermands, and the rest are assumed to remain in force.


  11. The post of S. Daniel Owen compares gay people to thiefs, drug addicts, racists, and whoremongers. This clearly rises to the level of hate speech. If we are ever to have a just society, this type of rhetoric must be eliminated. Not by forcible silencing, but by taking away the economic incentive and allowing it to die a natural death. Churches that preach bigotry should not be tax exempt. If these Legalist sects had to pay taxes, I bet they would tone down their hate speech in a heartbeat.

  12. Susan,

    The issue of being tax exempt is a fair one. I personally don’t disagree with you about tax exemption. If the state no longer feels this break is in the best interest of society as a whole the it should be revoked. But to revoke it because they won’t change their view point in something seems a bit extreme.

    I do want to say, though, that I think you underestimate me as a person. I was not making an equal comparison between “people” but between practices that are not deemed ‘right’ from the perspective of the god found in the Bible. Surely you could understand that? Your comment makes it appear as if I am a bigot for having an opinion opposite of yours. I made it clear I oppose neither homosexuality or civil unions being allowed by the government. So, please, be fair in your representation of the opposing view. Even though I am not sure what I said that you disagree with except I trust in a god and you don’t.


  13. I love the way everything is “hate speech” when it doesn’t match up with ones own particular beliefs. It’s kind of become cliche, like playing the race card when someone doesn’t have the evidence to support their case.

  14. I trust in the true God who is Good. You, S. Daniel Owen, trust in the bigotry of mortal men who have done immense harm to innocent people for no reason whatsoever. I do not underestimate you as a person; you lack compassion and empathy and THAT is what makes us human. Unquestioning faith in a dogmatic world view has led to holocaust and burning times. Why must this lesson must be learned over and over and over again when the outcome is always the same? The lives that bear the brunt of your forgetfulness are the young, the weak and the innocent. I don’t know who it is that you are worshiping, but it is not God.

  15. […] + "//"; document.getElementById("fb-root").appendChild(e); }()); Bob Cargill says it, and it needs saying. He reacts to this picture that has been making the rounds:However, […]

  16. Susan,

    How do you know so much about me? How am I guilty of trusting in bigotry of mortal men? How do you know I have unquestioning faith? Do you know someone who has bore the brunt of my forgetfulness?

    I wonder if you have asked any of the people whom I helped and still help stay clean from drugs? How about my SpEd students whom I teach? How about the prisoners that I visit? Have they told you I lack compassion and empathy? I only offer these little windows into my life because as far as I understand bigotry it has to do with holding an opinion about something or someone in spite of facts to the contrary.

    Obviously, I have areas in which I can mature in both intellectually and morally but how do you know these areas? If you can’t answer these questions then it is obvious that you are the bigot since you assume your opinions are fact in face of facts to the contrary.

    Bitterness never results in obtaining the goal that it truly seeks and that is a true lesson from history.


  17. Susan,

    How do you know I lack compassion? How do you know I lack empathy? How do you know that I have an unquestioning faith? Do you know anything about me?

    Unless you can answer your claims clearly you are the bigot.

  18. Dr. Cargill,

    So, how does a possible interpretation of Matthew’s Gospel in which Jesus is speaking to people who are Torah observant (and have been since birth at least nominally) override an explicit hermeneutical move? My question is because you said that this is a fallacy and it is exactly what the so-called Jerusalem Council did. Wouldn’t this “fallacious hermeneutic” at least be valid because it is given as THE hermeneutic for Gentiles? I mean you did call the young man (and implicitly those who come to the same conclusion) “hypocrites.” I cannot see how this is true since it is the way the NT explicitly claims Gentiles should use the Torah.


  19. S. Daniel Owens,
    I only know you from the hate speech that you spew and that is as much as I want to know. Call that bitterness or anything else that pleases you. I will never be silent and have battling this bigotry for many years. Do you realize that these gay people you throw on the trash heap are human beings? They have mothers with hopes and dreams for their children the same as your mother. I can’t imagine the pain that they must feel on a daily basis. You obviously have no compassion for them or you would keep your “opinions” to yourself.

  20. Ok, so in other words you are just making things up and saying them about people. I have friends who are homosexual and they are on no such trash heap. You are unfair and slanderous but that is ok with you because real life is not a place you live in it is something you imagine.

  21. How do these gay “friends” of yours feel about being compared to thiefs, drug addicts, racists, and whoremongers?

  22. Susan,

    Considering that I am a former theif, drug addict, whoremonger, etc. I believe they feel fine. We never have conversation where I compare them because I don’t do that. My statement clearly indicated that I accepted them. If you pay close attention to the acts I described they are not all “wrong” from a non-christian perspective. What is wrong with sleeping around or participating in prostitution? Nothing. Except from the perspective of the Christian ethic.

    You still haven’t substantiated your slanderous attack on me…I guess that is ok though.

  23. Slanderous? Who is speaking? And why invoke legal accusations of slander?

  24. I, S. Daniel Owens, am speaking. The word slander doesn’t have to carry the connotation of the courtroom. Susan has said many false things about me and I want to know why she believes it is ok.

    I am having trouble with worpress so I sometimes have to log in through Facebook and this last time it didn’t use either wordpress or Facebook. I am not sure why.

  25. What a load of crap! (Am I allowed to say that?) Christians do not have a corner on the ethics market. Secular people can respect themselves without having a patriarchal religious corporation telling them how to behave. My mother taught me the difference between right and wrong. If I was mean to someone she would ask me how I would feel if somebody did that to me. She would make me think about it. She taught me how to empathize.

    S. Daniel Owens, you become upset when it is suggested you are lacking compassion. How do you think gay people feel when you compare them to thieves, drug addicts, racists and whoremongers? I repeat; you lack the ability to empathize.

  26. Perhaps you are confusing slander with libel?
    (And no, it is neither slander or libel. )

  27. The New Oxford Dictionary gives the following usage for the term slander

    a false and malicious spoken statement.

    So, here again it is not I who I am confused it you who refuse to participate in the basic communicative process of inference. But thanks for speaking down to me I never realized you were so tall.

  28. S. Daniel,

    Please don’t play the martyr, and no, I’m not talking down to you. I’m simply correcting your repeated mistake. We are writing, not speaking.

    But, based upon your selectively erroneous misreading of the New Oxford, I’m gaining a better understanding of your selective hermeneutic. ;-)


  29. Why is it you will not respond to my questions about hermeneutics but you correct me on two very similar words after someone has maliciously said untrue things about me? I clearly said I support the civil unions of homosexuals so how is it I am such a terrible person?

    I make very clear and accurate statements regarding ‘cherry picking’ being the ‘official’ way the Gentiles should use the Torah and I get ignored? All these years I esteemed you as being a much better person than this and I know I am not wrong about. So please defeat my argument, say you don’t care but don’t treat me in a way that is inconsistent with what you expect from others.

  30. Susan,

    I never said Christians have any market cornered. They have a perspective (or, perspectives). I never ever said that Christians should get to tell anyone anything — except of course those who are Christians. That is not hard to understand.

    I don’t know how every ‘gay’ person feels neither do you. I have not kept anyone from anything. I don’t think all gay people go to “hell” or anything. Stop making this conversation about something it is not about. It is not about me. It is about calling a young man a hypocrit for cherry picking. Unfortunately, this cherry picking is prescribed for Gentile believers.

    I am sure you will always think me a bigot and I really wish I could do something to change your mind but if the fact that I am not a bigot is not enough to change your mind then I would be a fool to even try.

  31. Because I’m on a plane on vacation :)
    I just thought I’d step in and quickly and correct your slander/libel claim.

    I’ll respond to the more substantial criticisms at a later date.

    Play nice everyone.

  32. S. Daniel Owen, we are clearly not communicating. Just apologize to the entire LGBT community for grouping them with thieves, drug addicts, racists and whoremongers and we will call it a draw. Also, never do it again.

  33. Susan,

    Ok, I apologize for being a Christian and knowing something about it. If the offends you to bad. But really, if anyone genuinely took my comments to mean what you accuse me of I am deeply sorry. I did not mean to communicate what you say I meant and I have tried to say that numerous times. I merely meant to communicate that they should be treated with acceptance like everyone else. You must know, I work a drug rehab and am constantly in communication with people who have been to prison for numerous things and yes, many of them are homosexual. I think that all people are equal but I also believe that god has a plan for the earth. I get that you disagree but for anyone else who reads what I have said I am sincerely desirous for them to hear my words in a way that is consistent with the thought I had in my mind and not the one you have in yours.

    Susan I really do hope you understand that I am not who you say that I am.

    Thank you,

  34. What is the thought you had in your mind? We have read your semantic parsing and legalistic innuendo but are waiting to hear your bottom line. My distrust of your motives is on red alert with this statement; “I think that all people are equal but I also believe that god has a plan for the earth.” What does this mean in Christian Legal-speak? Even though you think I know nothing about it, a few things have filtered down that scares the !#%* out of me. The plan that you think is from God is really in your own mind. Your hermeneutic gymnastics is impressive but really it’s just another addiction.

    In other words – game on.

  35. susan, i like you. carry on. :)

  36. Why, thank you but I think I ran off poor Daniel. I really don’t like to hurt feelings but the days of that type of inflammatory rhetoric are numbered. In my small community we have a teenage suicide problem mostly of adolescent boys. These religious anti-gay statements are attacks on their self-esteem. “Christian” legalism gives the bully permission to denigrate anyone that is meek. As a mother, the pain of any child hurts me and sometimes I just see red.

  37. Susan-I’m a little late to this one but if you’re still following…as a christian and mother of a 21 year old lesbian, I hope you don’t think that Daniel is an accurate representation of all of us. He certainly doesn’t speak for me or any christians that I know.

  38. Wow,

    No one ran me off, I was attending to 1) the funeral of my wife’s cousin who died in a car wreck 2) the funeral of her aunt who died of cancer 3) my daughter who is continuing to suffer from a very terrible affliction (insomnia).


    You didn’t hurt my feeling, I am a grown up and can handle people calling me names. I’ll be ok. My rhetoric is not inflammatory you (and others) took offense. I have a view — Christianity has ethical standards — and you don’t like it. Ok. The “plan” that I am referring to is to bring the whole creation into the life that Jesus lived i.e., a disposition full of trust toward God. Again, I get that you a super psyched about the day when people have that hope will be banished from the earth but hey, that is you hate to live with not mine. I have clearly stated I am for the rights of the LBGT community. Period. My comparison was meant for people within the Church who are oppressing these basic human rights, this oppression is by no means supported by the Scriptures.

    Its like you missed first through third grade or have forgotten that communication is fundamentally an act of inference. I understand that you missed the significance of the four ethical lifestyles that I used as a comparison. Cool. But I repeatedly tried to clarify that it was not a comparison of people but of lifestyle. You have insisted on claiming I must have meant something else because I am a bigot. Well, if you say so it must be true.

    I believe homophobia is a fundamental denial of the hope that is found in Christ. Just because you do not share this hope or understand it a different way does not give you the right to say whatever you want. I go to a very fundamentalist seminary where people insist that people must “believe” like they do or they are “out” this is exactly what you are doing.

    My post was attempting to show 1) that I am in support of the LGBT rights in society and 2) it is not hypocritical to have a hermeneutic that ‘cherry picks.’ I didn’t say I’m going to go get a tattoo myself!

    I am aware of the teenage suicide problem as I work with children. The reason for suicide is not that people disagree with them but that people hate and mistreat them. I don’t do any of that. I am not anti-gay. But of course, facts mean nothing to you, only satisfying you hate is important.


    I doubt very seriously you don’t know any Christians who take a stand on ethical issues. All you are doing is contributing to the immature act that is taking place in this interaction.

  39. Natalie, I have a good friend from school who is an ordained minister. She performs marriages for same-sex couples. Her focus is on the loving spirit of Jesus and does not get hung up on archaic legalisms.

  40. Daniel, I am very glad to hear your feelings were not hurt and sorry to hear of your misfortunes. However, every paragraph you write only confirms my original conclusion. It is true I was not indoctrinated at an early age (first – third grade) and so must translate your fundamentalist vernacular into secular English. You want to absolve yourself of the bigot label by separating the deed from the person. This exegesis was developed only in the last 15 years as a response to the gay rights movement. If it were not for the LGBT community asserting their rights as human beings, your sect would still be ruining lives with impunity.
    The reason for teenage suicide is because children are unable to do the hermeneutic gymnastics you have mastered. They cannot separate the deed from the person. In their immature minds, if you do bad you are bad.

    In some ways, your Jim Crow version of gay bigotry is worse than the Westboro Christian Church. At least we can see Fred Phelps coming from a mile away and marshall our forces. Your brand is insidious. We are caught unawares after being lulled into a false sense of security because you associate yourselves with Jesus.

  41. 1-3 grade is where children formally learn to read and write, I am a first grade special Ed teacher. Anyway, I can see you have your mind made up so there it is.


  42. Daniel, You know what you’re right, I do know Christians who, take a stand on “ethical issues”, as you put it.

  43. Daniel, Your mind needs to change. My advise is to leave your church If they make you think like them. I bet your family would sleep better. This dysfunctional exegesis is causing the problems you work so hard to prevent. When Matthew Shepard was found barely alive hanging on a fence there was a paradigm shift. His mother’s anguish caused the rest of us to look at ourselves. Before Matthew Shepard there was Emmitt Till. The same paradigm shift occurred because his mother made us share in her horror. Multiply these mother’s by 100,000 and you will get a sense of how much grief this archaic legalism has caused humanity. You claim you are a part of the body of Jesus. Apparently, he died for nothing because you still don’t get it. Mary, mother of Jesus was with her son throughout and WATCHED as he was tortured and died. A paradigm shift of immense proportions occurred because of Mary’s anguish. When are we going to finally get it? The fruit of this exegesis is rotten.

  44. susan burnes,
    marcel gelmi is hardly aryan. at least be accurate in your judgment.

    cargill, read the slaves obey your master quote honestly for what it says; be obedient, show the humility of Christ. it does not say: go out and enslave people and make them obey you, as you seem to extrapolate. clearly the Bible does not endorse homosexuality anywhere, you show an extreme amount of bitterness on this subject and it does not resonate as anything from the Lord. whether someone tattooes something stupid on their arm or not hardly has any relevance on this question, it just sounds like you’re grasping.

  45. hank,

    you stated:

    it does not say: go out and enslave people and make them obey you, as you seem to extrapolate.

    now read leviticus 25:44-46.

    “However, you may purchase male or female slaves from among the foreigners who live among you. You may also purchase the children of such resident foreigners, including those who have been born in your land. You may treat them as your property, passing them on to your children as a permanent inheritance. You may treat your slaves like this, but the people of Israel, your relatives, must never be treated this way.”

    then read exodus 21:2-6.

    “If you buy a Hebrew slave, he is to serve for only six years. Set him free in the seventh year, and he will owe you nothing for his freedom. If he was single when he became your slave and then married afterward, only he will go free in the seventh year. But if he was married before he became a slave, then his wife will be freed with him. If his master gave him a wife while he was a slave, and they had sons or daughters, then the man will be free in the seventh year, but his wife and children will still belong to his master. But the slave may plainly declare, ‘I love my master, my wife, and my children. I would rather not go free.’ If he does this, his master must present him before God. Then his master must take him to the door and publicly pierce his ear with an awl. After that, the slave will belong to his master forever.”

    then answer this question: are leviticus and exodus in the bible?



  46. I think Hank is confusing aryan with nordic.

  47. I am truly baffled by Christian Hank’s comment. I hope someone will please explain to me the Christian view of how gay people came to be. If they are not God’s creation, where did they come from? If they are God’s creation, they deserve a seat at the covenant table. Excluding them is causing great pain and suffering. Apparently, Christian Hank does not think justice “resonates” with the Lord. Why are gay people not deserving of God’s mercy?

  48. […] seeking to suppress the rights of others with whom them happen to disagree. I’ve discussed “cherry picking” and the fallacy of an inconsistent hermeneutic before. It repeatedly seems that fundamentalist Christians will ignore clear “biblical […]

  49. […] and you’ll see acted out what I’ve been arguing here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here for years […]

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