The Cost of Mis-Reading VI Insisting on the Inconsistent or Why Are We Compelled to Mis-read?

We all have a tendency to see in the Bible text what is in ourselves.  If we have a prejudice for or against the text, we will find reasons for our preference in the text.  Some readers find errors and contradictions in the Bible.  Others find truth and consistency in the Bible.  Whatever we find, […]

The Cost of Mis-Reading V Marrying the Rapist? Deuteronomy 22:28-29

I have seen three recent references to this text and the outrage of the Bible’s requirement of having a woman marry her rapist.  This would be an outrage if it were the case.  Thankfully it is not.  This is case however, not only of poor reading, but also of irresponsible translation. In order to understand […]

The Cost of Mis-Reading IV The Very Worst Scenario

I have been posting these notes from my studies in the Torah in preparation of addressing an issue so horrible I hate to even speak of it. However since the issue has come up in the news and on my newsfeed twice in one month I feel like I should say something. In a news-piece […]

The Cost of Mis-Reading Part III Does the Bible Prescribe the Public Humiliation of Women by their Husbands?

Deuteronomy 22:13-21 A New Bride Accused This text is often described in terms of what should be done in the case of a woman who is married and found not to be a virgin.  In fact, it is about what to do when a private matter is dealt with in a public and inappropriate way. […]

The Cost of Mis-Reading Part II Is a Woman “Defiled” by Marriage?

The Case of Divorce, Remarriage, Divorce and Returning to the First Husband Deuteronomy 24:1-4 Deuteronomy 24 since it is often used as the definitive case regarding divorce.  Ironically, it is in the section regarding theft, and it is about a very particular circumstance: A man takes a wife and marries her.She finds no favor in […]

The Cost of Mis-Reading Part I Reclaiming the Bible’s Terminology

The cost of mis-interpreting the Bible has been largely borne by women. Women’s voices have been under-represented in many of the loudest conversations about the sections of Scriptures that impact them most. This has further left women out of the conversation, as their very right to speak has been called into question. This is not […]

What About Daughters?

“Teach your sons” in Deuteronomy 6:7 (Reposted from my previous blog) Deuteronomy 6 is the beginning of a sixth chapter exposition of the command, “you shall have no other Gods before Me.”  The major idea of the chapter is that learning, remembering, reflecting, and acting upon Torah will keep the community’s heart firmly planted and […]

Pride and Prejudice and the Laws of Inheritance

It amazes me both how much Torah has shaped Western culture and how much misinterpretation of Torah has shaped Western culture. A recent reading of Jane Austen got me thinking about the fact that even in the last century English women could not inherit land, and the kind of desperation that caused. I don’t know […]