The Bible Unmasked
by Joseph Lewis
The Bible Unmasked
Table of Contents
The Rape of Tamar by Her Brother Amnon.
The love of brother and sister is one of the sweetest and most appealing of life's relationships. When this love is enhanced by the brother's chivalric attitude towards his sister, and he not only loves her tenderly, but seeks to act as her guardian and protector, we have a family relationship, the very embodiment of which "is a consummation devoutly to be wished."
When you see a brother anxious about the welfare of his sister, you can very confidently conclude that they are members of a family with the very highest ideals and principles. The love of brother and sister is one of those human ties which we remember with so much tenderness and mention with so much pride. Were this affection between brother and sister instilled in us in our childhood, there would be no need for fearful moments in later years regarding our children's development. Their characters will reflect their training. They will become not only an honor to their parents, but a credit to the community which is fortunate enough to have them as citizens. The finest impulses of life spring from this brotherly and sisterly devotion.
And how many men, remembering their sisters, are deterred from committing some misdeed towards another man's sister? And how many times have you heard a man say to another who boasts of his conquests, "Would you want that to happen to your sister?" Morality's cornerstone is shaped within the circle of the family. Learn the attitude of one towards the other and you have the key to that family's moral worth. Morality's most perfect instrument in measuring the calibre of a man is in determining his attitude towards the weaker sex. To instill this cherished relationship into the minds of our children should be our deep concern.
If it is by example and illustration that moral lessons are best inculcated; then it naturally follows that the books we instruct our children to read should contain stories which impress such examples upon their mind.
There are in circulation many books with such stories and examples, but the ministers of the church do not seem to be particularly interested in them. They are over-officious in their demand that the Bible be read in our public schools and its examples be impressed upon the minds of our children. So, as a means of enlightenment, we will relate the next story which follows in the Bible so that you may judge for yourself its value in uplifting morally the character of our people. It is needless to mention that your sensibilities will be shocked by what is to follow, unless the previous chapters of the Bible have revealed a sufficient amount of appalling stories to make you callous to anything that might still be related.
Remember, the story to follow comes from a book sanctified as the Holy Scriptures, and I wonder how many can read it without a feeling of repulsion and contempt for the book from which it is taken? How many will understand the mockery of such a name as "Holy Scriptures" upon the covers of the Bible? For its full significance, I quote the story without interruption.
Samuel 2, Chapter 13, Verses 1-14.
|And it came to pass after this, that Absalom the son of David had a fair sister, whose name was Tamar; and Amnon the son of David loved her.
2. And Amnon was so vexed, that he fell sick for his sister Tamar; for she was a virgin; and Amnon thought it hard for him to do any thing to her.
3. But Amnon had a friend, whose name was Jonadab, the son of Shimeah David's brother: and Jonadab was a very subtile man.
4. And he said unto him, Why art thou, being the king's son, lean from day to day? wilt thou not tell me? And Amnon said unto him, I love Tamar my brother Absalom's sister.
5. And Jonadab said unto him, Lay thee down on thy bed, and make thyself sick: and when thy father cometh to see thee, say unto him, I pray thee, let my sister Tamar come, and give me meat, and dress the meat in my sight, that I may see it, and eat it at her hand.
6. So Amnon lay down, and made himself sick: and when the king was come to see him, Amnon said unto the king, I pray thee, let Tamar my sister come, and make me a couple of cakes in my sight, that I may eat at her hand.
7. Then David sent home to Tamar, saying, Go now to thy brother Amnon's house, and dress him meat.
8. So Tamar went to her brother Amnon's house; and he was laid down. And she took flour, and kneaded it, and made cakes in his sight, and did bake the cakes.
9. And she took a pan, and poured them out before him; but he refused to eat. And Amnon said, Have out all men from me. And they went out every man from him.
10. And Amnon said unto Tamar, Bring the meat into the chamber, that I may eat of thine hand. And Tamar took the cakes which she had made, and brought them into the chamber to Amnon her brother.
11. And when she had brought them unto him to eat, he took hold of her and said unto her, Come lie with me, my sister.
12. And she answered him, Nay, my brother, do not force me; for no such thing ought to be done in Israel: do not thou this folly.
13. And I, whither shall I cause my shame to go? and as for thee, thou shalt be as one of the fools in Israel. Now therefore, I pray thee, speak unto the king; for he will not withhold me from thee.
14. Howbeit he would not hearken unto her voice: but, being stronger than she, forced her, and lay with her.
The pleadings of his fair sister were of no avail. "Nay, my brother, do not force me," she cried; but, evidently bearing in mind the example set by his father David, Amnon, "being stronger than she, forced her, and lay with her."
Wouldn't this story be ten thousand times better if it depicted an altogether different scene -- a scene where a brother seeks, even to the sacrificing of his life, the protection of his sister?
So much for this foul deed. Amnon is well suited to be associated with the other Biblical men, and is truly a worthy son of his infamous father. His so-called "love" for his sister was not real love, but a brutal and lustful desire.
Samuel 2, Chapter 13, Verses 15-17.
|15. Then Amnon hated her exceedingly; so that the hatred wherewith he hated her was greater than the love wherewith he had loved her. And Amnon said unto her, Arise, be gone.
16. And she said unto him, There is no cause: this evil in sending me away is greater than the other that thou didst unto me. But he would not hearken unto her.
17. Then he called his servant that ministered unto him, and said, Put now this woman out from me, and bolt the door after her.
He could not have treated the commonest woman with more brutality than he did his own sister, whom he should have protected against harm at all costs.
Samuel 2, Chapter 13, Verses 18-19.
|18. And she had a garment of divers colours upon her: for with such robes were the king's daughters that were virgins apparelled. Then his servant brought her out, and bolted the door after her.
19. And Tamar put ashes on her head, and rent her garment of divers colours that was on her, and laid her hand on her head, and went on crying.
What happens to poor Tamar the story does not tell at this particular time.
Samuel 2, Chapter 13, Verse 20.
|20. And Absalom her brother said unto her, Hath Amnon thy brother been with thee? but hold now thy peace, my sister: he is thy brother; regard not this thing. So Tamar remained desolate in her brother Absalom's house.|
The story continues, and Absalom, after a period of two years, finally avenges the rape of his sister, by murdering Amnon.
Just think, this story of rape and incest, is quoted from the book that our children are taught to read in Sunday Schools; the book they are taught to hold in deep reverence, and respect above everything else in life; a book that they are forced to kiss if it happens to fall to the floor -- the kiss implying the love and holiness with which they regard it -- a book which has made mental slaves of them, and which must be worshipped with an undivided devotion. Even to question the authority of this book is the sacrilege of sacrilege.
Oh! the horror of it! It seems unbelievable that such a story, where a brother cunningly entices his sister into his room, under the pretext of being ill, and while she is engaged in preparing his food, orders all attendants to leave, and then ravishes her, could be found anywhere within the reach of children; and yet ignorant parents and stupid preachers, even to the extent of punishment, force the reading of this book upon children!!
Before passing on to the next story, let me ask this question: Is the Bible the book to which we should look for that sublime example of family relationship we all should try to emulate?
Answer that question in the sincerity of your own mind?
The Story of Ruth.
"It's love that makes the world go 'round," and those stories which depict love in its best and holiest sense, are ever dear to the heart of man. Surely it would appear certain that the sweetest story of love would be found in the book represented as being of "divine inspiration" and containing the highest sentiments of love. You would expect it to detail love in its most cherished and hallowed way and to be ever a guide and inspiration for the children of the earth to follow.
Whenever we speak of love -- that precious bond between man and woman -- we quite naturally think of the immortal production, "Romeo and Juliet." But it may be enlightening to some to learn that "Romeo and Juliet" is not to be found in the Bible. This wonderful classic of love's emotion is the product of a human being by the name of William Shakespeare. We might well boast of the Bible and its value were it to contain this precious document of love.
But the love story of the Bible is found in The Book of Ruth, and let us hope it contains the philosophy, the inspiration, the humanity and the love of one for the other, found in that love story of Shakespeare.
It is by example and inspiration, more than by any other means, that we advance intellectually and morally. It is example which inspires us to emulate the great forward steps that have been made in the ethical and moral life of the human race. For that reason examples are of the utmost importance in elevating the moral life of man.
It is "setting the good example" to the child, which prompts him, above everything else, to develop moral character. How often is it the bad example that is responsible for the warping of the child's moral fibre? If it is the example that is so influential in determining the moral development of our children, it therefore becomes our solemn duty to see that only the best of examples are put before our children for their guidance.
It is our duty as parents, if we are concerned at all with the happiness of our children and the welfare of our community, to see that the pernicious and the degrading influences are avoided and those tender emotions that make for love, and honor, and integrity are implanted into the very depths of their hearts. The Bible contains "love stories"; but these stories are such that I do not think you would consider them the ideal ones that your daughter should follow.
Were your daughter to follow the action of Ruth in the attainment of what she desired, what would be your opinion of her? And if you object to the behavior of Ruth, what right have you to insist that your child read the Bible for inspiration and example? And if the Bible's narrative is such that it deserves your condemnation, of what spineless material are you made that you are not prompted to protest against the dissemination of the Bible's immoralities and degrading influences? If the Bible admonished our young women to avoid the actions of Ruth in the attainment of what she desired, then we could, with pride, point to its moral. But it does nothing of the kind. It is just another one of the Bible's samples of prostitution and sexual debauchery.
Although the entire Book of Ruth is quite short, I do not think it necessary to quote it in its entirety. The story relates how a famine covered the land and how a man and his wife and two sons journeyed to another country to escape starvation; while there, the two sons married two daughters of that land. In a short time all the male members of the family died, leaving the mother and her two daughters-in-law without male companionship and support. And from here we begin our story.
I quote The Book of Ruth, Chapter 1, Verses 1-13.
|Now it came to pass in the days when the judges ruled, that there was a famine in the land. And a certain man of Beth-lehem-judah went to sojourn in the country of Moab, he, and his wife, and his two sons.
2. And the name of the man was Elimelech, and the name of his wife Naomi, and the name of his two sons Mahlon and Chilion, Ephrathites of Beth-lehem-judah. And they came into the country of Moab, and continued there.
3. And Elimelech Naomi's husband died; and she was left, and her two sons.
4. And they took them wives of the women of Moab; the name of the one was Orpah, and the name of the other Ruth: and they dwelt there about ten years.
5. And Mahlon and Chilion died also both of them; and the woman was left of her two sons and her husband.
6. Then she arose with her daughters in law, that she might return from the country of Moab: for she had heard in the country of Moab how that the Lord had visited his people in giving them bread.
7. Wherefore she went forth out of the place where she was, and her two daughters in law with her; and they went on the way to return unto the land of Judah.
8. And Naomi said unto her two daughters in law, Go, return each to her mother's house: the Lord deal kindly with you, as ye have dealt with the dead, and with me.
9 The Lord grant you that ye may find rest, each of you in the house of her husband. Then she kissed them; and they lifted up their voice, and wept.
10. And they said unto her, Surely we will return with thee unto thy people.
11. And Naomi said, Turn again, my daughters: why will ye go with me? are there yet any more sons in my womb, that they may be your husbands?
12. Turn again, my daughters, go your way; for I am too old to have a husband. If I should say, I have hope, if I should have a husband also to night, and should also bear sons;
13. Would ye tarry for them till they were grown? would ye stay for them from having husbands? nay, my daughters: for it grieveth me much for your sakes that the hand of the Lord is gone out against me.
It was certainly nice for the two daughters-in-law to cling to their mother-in-law in this crisis, but let me repeat, as an edifying thought, the words of the mother when she says, "Turn again my daughters, why will you go with me? Are there yet any more sons in my womb, that they may be your husbands?" This is not the only edifying thought expressed in the narrative and we quote again, "Turn again, my daughters, go your way; for I am too old to have a husband. If I should say, I have hope, if I should have a husband also to-night, and should also bear sons." I am inclined to think that if there were any men around Orpah and Ruth would have wanted them, since marriage was what Naomi so anxiously desired for them. How foolish it would have been for them to wait for the birth and growth of Naomi's child, "if she should have a husband also to-night, and should also bear sons"?
Aside from_ what the narrative implies and aside from the delicacy with which it is expressed, no one can gainsay that the above quotations do not make for a sensible sex education for our young.
The Book of Ruth, Chapter 1, Verses 14-19.
|14. And they lifted up their voice, and wept again: and Orpah kissed her mother in law; but Ruth clave unto her.
15. And she said, Behold, thy sister in law is gone back unto her people, and unto her gods: return thou after thy sister in law.
16. And Ruth said, Entreat me not to leave thee, or to return from following after thee: for whither thou goest, I will go; and where thou lodgest, I will lodge: thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God.
17. Where thou diest, will I die, and there will I be buried: the Lord do so to me, and more also, if aught but death part thee and me.
18. When she saw that she was steadfastly minded to go with her, then she left speaking unto her.
19. So they two went until they came to Beth-lehem. And it came to pass, when they were come to Beth-lehem, that all the city was moved about them, and they said, Is this Naomi?
Because of Ruth's loyalty, Naomi, her mother-in-law, was constantly on the look-out for her welfare and particularly anxious to secure a husband for her. It is Naomi's actions in this matter which bring us to the heart of the story. It is what she makes Ruth do that so concerns us.
The Book of Ruth, Chapter 3, Verses 1-4.
|Then Naomi her mother in law said unto her, My daughter, shall I not seek rest for thee, that it may be well with thee?
2. And now is not Boaz of our kindred, with whose maidens thou wast? Behold, he winnoweth barley to night in the threshingfloor.
3. Wash thyself therefore, and anoint thee, and put thy raiment upon thee, and get thee down to the floor: but make not thyself known unto the man, until he shall have done eating and drinking.
4. And it shall be, when he lieth down. that thou shalt mark the place where he shall lie, and thou shalt go in, and uncover his feet, and lay thee down; and he will tell thee what thou shalt do.
This is certainly a pleasing situation. "And it shall be, when he lieth down, that thou shalt mark the place where he shall lie, and thou shalt go in, and uncover his feet, and lay thee down; and he will tell thee what to do." "He will tell thee what to do" is just enough, were our taste for the lascivious, to arouse our curiosity for more details. Ruth was well aware what was to take place, as she assented to the instructions in the verse following.
The Book of Ruth, Chapter 3, Verses 5-6.
|5. And she said unto her, All that thou sayest unto me I will do.
6. And she went down unto the floor, and did according to all that her mother in law bade her.
That Ruth followed the instructions of her mother-in-law to the letter, is revealed in the next verse, and we inquisitively await her action especially since we are told that when she "uncover his feet, and lay thee down, he will tell thee what to do."
The Book of Ruth, Chapter 3, Verse 7.
|7. And when Boaz had eaten and drunk, and his heart was merry, he went to lie down at the end of the heap of corn: and she came softly, and uncovered his feet, and laid her down.|
What a situation! After eating and drinking to your heart's content, to lie down for a sweet slumber and have a delightful and willing young lady to uncover your feet, lie down next to you, and be your bed-fellow until --
The Book of Ruth, Chapter 3, Verse 8.
|8. And it came to pass at midnight, that the man was afraid, and turned himself: and, behold, a woman lay at his feet.|
Now put yourself in Boaz's position for a moment, and would you not have been "afraid" to find in the very dead of night, a lovely young lady lying next to you, wholly unannounced and unexpected?
The Book of Ruth, Chapter 3, Verse 9.
|9. And he said, Who art thou? And she answered, I am Ruth thine handmaid spread therefore thy skirt over thine handmaid: for thou art a near kinsman.|
"Who art thou?" Boaz nervously, but very rightly, asks. And it is very fortunate he had that much presence of mind, and Ruth answered coyly and with all the appeal of the feminine instinct, "I am Ruth, thy handmaid: therefore spread thy skirt over thy handmaid," which was certainly an encouraging sign on her part. They wore loose apparel in those days and when she said to Boaz, "spread thy skirt over thy handmaid," there was much significance attached to that suggestion.
The Book of Ruth, Chapter 3, Verses 10-11.
|10. And he said, Blessed be thou of the Lord, my daughter: for thou hast shewed more kindness in the latter end than at the beginning, inasmuch as thou followedst not young men, whether poor or rich.
11. And now, my daughter, fear not; I will do to thee all that thou requirest: for all the city of my people doth know that thou art a virtuous woman.
No wonder Boaz blessed the Lord for her, and did unto her all that she requirest. But I doubt very much whether all the people considered her a virtuous woman after this little lark. People are rather suspicious of young girls who spend the night with a man.
I wonder what Boaz meant when he said, "for thou hast shown more kindness in the latter end than at the beginning?" Could it have been that Ruth at first repulsed his attentions and later willingly submitted to him?
The Book of Ruth, Chapter 3, Verses 12-13.
|12. And now it is true that I am thy near kinsman: howbeit there is a kinsman nearer than I.
13. Tarry this night, and it shall be in the morning, that if he will perform unto thee the part of a kinsman, well; let him do the kinsman's part: but if he will not do the part of a kinsman to thee, then will I do the part of a kinsman to thee, as the Lord liveth: lie down until the morning.
If you think Boaz meant anything but the purest of Platonic relationship when he told Ruth at midnight, mind you, to "lie down until the morning," and that, as the Lord liveth, he would do the kinsman part to her, you are assured of this truth from the following.
The Book of Ruth, Chapter 3, Verse 14.
|14. And she lay at his feet until the morning: and she rose up before one could know another. And he said, Let it not be known that a woman came into the floor.|
There is somewhat of a slight contradiction in the verse above. Certainly if it were midnight when Boaz discovered Ruth, and she lay there with him until morning, there was plenty of time for one to "know another." The translators, evidently realizing the suggestion contained in this verse, inserted the phrase, "she rose up before one could know another," to circumvent the thought that would naturally arise at such a situation. The situation and inference, however, are only too plain. His very significant remark, "Let it not be known that a woman came into the floor," needs no comment.
The Book of Ruth, Chapter 3, Verses 15-16.
|15. Also he said, Bring the vail that thou hast upon thee, and hold it. And when she held it, he measured six measures of barley, and laid it on her: and she went into the city.
16. And when she came to her mother in law, she said, Who art thou, my daughter? And she told her all that the man had done to her.
Enough has been quoted from this narrative to classify it as being too suggestive for cultural reading, especially to growing youth. "And she told her all that the man had done to her," is sufficient unto itself to brand it with the mark of the lascivious. That Ruth was fully compensated for "all that the man had done to her," is amplified in the following.
The Book of Ruth, Chapter 3, Verses 17-18.
|17. And she said, These six measures of barley gave he me; for he said to me, Go not empty unto thy mother in law.
18. Then said she, Sit still, my daughter, until thou know how the matter will fall: for the man will not be in rest, until he have finished the thing this day.
What Naomi meant when she told Ruth to "sit still, my daughter, until thou know how the matter will fall," admits of your own interpretation and I will not give mine. Of one thing I am sure, and that is this: If your daughter, or any man's daughter chose Ruth's method of securing a husband, what would be your thoughts about the matter? Would you consider it elevating? Would you consider it respectable? Would you sanction it as being the proper course of courtship? Or would you more properly condemn it as being abhorrent to our moral sensibilities? If you read this story in any other book than the Bible, would you not condemn it as being suggestive and vulgar? Haven't stories with less "color" than this one been judged obscene? If we are to look to the Bible for our source of knowledge and our guidance through life, is this story of Ruth conducive to such an end?
Now, honor bright, let us be fair and honest with each other. Wouldn't it have made a glorious difference; wouldn't an immeasurable benefit have resulted, had the story of Ruth imparted to the marriageable girl or prospective bride the essential knowledge so vital to her welfare and happiness in the marital state? Knowledge of the proper sex relation; knowledge of maternal care; yes, knowledge of Birth Control; not instead to suggest that she lay on the floor, next to a man all night as an advertisement for her charms and physical credentials of her marriageability?
And to cap the climax, marriage ceremonies are solemnized by the bride and groom, placing their hands, in the holy bonds of matrimony, upon the covers of the Bible, as a benediction of God to their sacred union!
King Solomon and His Songs.
Before quoting the erotic utterances from the Songs of Solomon, it may be permissible to make mention of an incident in the life of Solomon which possesses a rather unique angle and which gives an interesting index to his conduct. You remember when Abishag, the young and beautiful virgin, was ministering to David to give him "heat" that he might "know her," Bath-sheba, his wife, approached him, and in pleading tones, begged David, that Solomon, her child, might inherit the throne of Israel. She made this plea because word had just been brought to her by Nathan, the prophet, that another and elder son, Adonijah, by another wife, had set up a throne and proclaimed himself King of Israel. David granted her request, if you remember. and upon his death, Solomon ascended the throne of Israel.
Being denied the right to the cherished kingship, Adonijah wanted the next best thing that David possessed, and we begin our narrative by quoting Kings 1, Chapter 2, Verses 12-14.
|12. Then sat Solomon upon the throne of David his father; and his kingdom was established greatly.
13. And Adonijah the son of Haggith came to Bath-sheba the mother of Solomon. And she said, Comest thou peaceably? And he said, Peaceably.
14. He said moreover, I have somewhat to say unto thee. And she said, Say on.
Adonijah has evidently buried his disappointment at not being able to reign over Israel and shows his manhood by coming to Bath-sheba and proclaiming peace. This is a very encouraging sign, for, several thousand were generally killed when such a situation arose among these blood-thirsty savages. "Comest thou peaceably?" asks Bath-sheba, and Adonijah replies, "Peaceably." But -- and this forms the basis of a significant incident -- "I have somewhat to say unto thee," and Bath-sheba, with all the refinement and dignity of a King's mother, answers, "Say on."
Kings 1, Chapter 2, Verses 15-17.
|15. And he said, Thou knowest that the kingdom was mine, and that all Israel set their faces on me, that I should reign: howbeit the kingdom is turned about, and is become my brother's: for it was his from the Lord.
16. And now I ask one petition of thee, deny me not. And she said unto him, Say on.
17. And he said, Speak, I pray thee, unto Solomon the king, (for he will not say thee nay,) that he give me Abishag the Shunammite to wife.
After all, it was a very small price to ask in exchange for the giving up of a kingdom; a kingdom with sufficient power to secure for yourself any woman that you desired. But aside from that, is not the situation one of high spiritual value? Is it not conducive to moral elevation to ask as your wife a young lady who but recently had lain in the bosom of your father for the purpose of giving him "heat"? As for Abishag, she no doubt was anxious, after the heroic endeavor to have David "know her," to secure as a husband a younger and more virile man. Bath-sheba sees the justice of Adonijah's petition, and possibly remembering with a bit of jealousy the scene of David and Abishag agrees to speak to Solomon in behalf of Adonijah in his quest for the beautiful virgin. As Solomon's reign is noted for its wisdom, let us note carefully with what wisdom he executes his first official act.
Kings 1, Chapter 2, Verses 18-20.
|18. And Bath-sheba said, Well; I will speak for thee unto the king.
19. Bath-sheba therefore went unto king Solomon, to speak unto him for Adonijah. And the king rose up to meet her, and bowed himself unto her, and sat down on his throne, and caused a seat to be set for the king's mother; and she sat on his right hand.
20. Then she said, I desire one small petition of thee; I pray thee, say me not nay. And the king said unto her, Ask on, my mother; for I will not say thee nay.
After all, it was a very small matter, when we take into consideration that Solomon was to possess seven hundred wives and three hundred concubines. And then there is another thought to be taken into consideration. What would Solomon do with Abishag? Would this wise man (wisest who ever lived according to the Jews) want her for himself after she had lain in his father's bosom? Or was the beauty of Abishag so captivating that it overshadowed this objection?
For the answer to Bath-sheba's request of Adonijah's desire, we must continue with the Biblical narrative; but remember Solomon's assurance to his mother when she asks for the granting of this "one small petition," he answers, "I will not say thee nay."
Kings 1, Chapter 2, Verses 21-22.
|21. And she said, Let Abishag the Shunammite be given to Adonijah thy brother to wife.
22. And king Solomon answered and said unto his mother, And why dost thou ask Abishag the Shunammite for Adonijah? ask for him the kingdom also; for he is mine elder brother; even for him, and for Abiathar the priest, and for Joab the son of Zeruiah.
What! did Solomon consider the beauty of this Shunammite maid equal to the possession of his kingdom? "Why, Mother dear, why don't you ask me for the entire kingdom"? whispered Solomon with a slight curl upon his lips. Solomon not only inherited his father's kingdom, but also had a desire to possess this beautiful virgin. For Adonijah's insolence for even making such a request, read the judgment this "wise" man of Israel inflicts upon him.
Kings 1, Chapter 2, Verses 23-25.
|23. Then king Solomon sware by the Lord, saying, God do so to me and more also, if Adonijah have not spoken this word against his own life.
24. Now therefore, as the Lord liveth, which hath established me, and set me on the throne of David my father, and who hath made me a house, as he promised, Adonijah shall be put to death this day.
25. And King Solomon sent by the hand of Benaiah the son of Jehoiada; and he fell upon him that he died.
So much for this little episode. It is indeed a very difficult thing to make continual comment upon the atrocities of these Biblical characters, and so I will let the matter rest with your judgment. My only comment is this: Perhaps while in the caress of this beautiful young woman, Solomon was inspired to write the lovely songs from which I will quote a few extracts. The Bible from which the following verses are taken, has as a caption at the beginning of the chapter:
|"The Church and Christ Congratulate One Another."|
If the "Church" is a woman and "Christ" a man, well might they.
I quote The Songs of Solomon, Chapter 1, Verse 13.
|13. A bundle of myrrh is my well beloved unto me; he shall lie all night betwixt my breasts.|
I must again confess my lack of spiritual understanding to imagine that this verse represents a "loving" meeting between the Son of God and his church on earth.
It is my opinion, and there is abundant evidence to prove it true, that the early fathers of the church, realizing the eroticism of the Songs of Solomon, falsely captioned the verses to detract from their passionate suggestions. For what hypocrisy it is to say that these songs represent Christ and his church, when they were written long before Christ was born and before the Christian church came into existence. It is pure hypocrisy to so caption these passionate love songs.
The Songs of Solomon, Chapter 3, Verses 1-2. The caption above this song is:
|"The Church's Fight and Victory In Temptation."|
What is your opinion of it?
|By night on my bed, I sought him whom my soul loveth: I sought him, but I found him not.
2. I will rise now, and go about the city in the streets, and in the broad ways I will seek him whom my soul loveth: I sought him, but I found him not.
For wonderful prophetic knowledge we must bow in reverence to the Bible. Who would dream that, after 2,000 years, this verse would be just as applicable as it was when first written? Were the "broad ways" of Biblical times the same as our own Broadway?
The Songs of Solomon, Chapter 3, Verses 3-4.
|3. The watchmen that go about the city found me: to whom I said, Saw ye him whom my soul loveth?
4. It was but a little that I passed from them, but I found him whom my soul loveth: I held him, and would not let him go, until I had brought him into my mother's house, and into the chamber of her that conceived me.
Remember that at the beginning of this song I quoted the caption which appears in the Bible, that this song was "The Church's Fight and Victory in Temptation," and can you tell me how any sane person can interpret the following words to mean what this caption is supposed to infer? "I found him whom my soul loveth; I held him, and would not let him go, until I brought him into my mothers house, and into the chamber of her that conceived me." If the "church" was fighting temptation, I am of the conviction that in this instance, she yielded to it. What do you think of such a "victory"?
The next song of Solomon's is captioned
|"Christ Setteth Forth the Graces of the Church."|
and I want you to read carefully what follows in order to note how perfectly and minutely the description fits the title.
The Songs of Solomon, Chapter 4, Verses 1-2.
|Behold, thou art fair, my love; behold, thou art fair; thou hast doves' eyes within thy locks: thy hair is as a flock of goats, that appear from mount Gilead.
2. Thy teeth are like a flock of sheep that are even shorn, which came up from the washing; whereof every one bear twins, and none is barren among them.
If you have never seen the "teeth" of the church you can very easily get a glimpse of them by reading "The Conflict of Science and Religion" by Professor John W. Draper.
The Songs of Solomon, Chapter 4, Verses 3-5.
|3. Thy lips are like a thread of scarlet, and thy speech is comely: thy temples are like a piece of a pomegranate within thy locks.
4. Thy neck is like the tower of David builded for an armoury, whereon there hang a thousand bucklers, all shields of mighty men.
5. Thy two breasts are like two young roes that are twins, which feed among the lilies.
Did you ever see anything on a church or a part of a church that looked like the breasts of a woman? You haven't, neither have I; nor does this description refer to a building. This song gives such a perfect "outline" and "form" of a "church" that I will quote it entire.
The Songs of Solomon, Chapter 4, Verses 6-9.
|6. Until the day break, and the shadows flee away, I will get me to the mountain of myrrh, and to the hill of frankincense.
7. Thou art all fair, my love, there is no spot in thee.
8. Come with me from Lebanon, my spouse, with me from Lebanon: look from the top of Amana, from the top of Shenir and Hermon, from the lions' dens, from the mountains of the leopards.
9 Thou hast ravished my heart, my sister, my spouse; thou hast ravished my heart with one of thine eyes, with one chain of thy neck.
Let me repeat the expression, I am sure we have all heard, but never in reference to a building. "Thou hast ravished my heart, my sister; thou hast ravished my heart with one of thine eyes, with one chain of thy neck."
The Songs of Solomon, Chapter 4, Verse 10.
|10. How fair is thy love, my sister, my spouse! how much better is thy love than wine! and the smell of thine ointments than all spices!|
We have also heard that before and it was never uttered to a church.
The Songs of Solomon, Chapter 4, Verses 11-12.
|11. Thy lips, O my spouse, drop as the honeycomb: honey and milk are under thy tongue; and the smell of thy garments is like the smell of Lebanon.
12. A garden inclosed is my sister, my spouse; a spring shut up, a fountain sealed.
Certainly the church was never deserving of such a tribute. And now to conclude this choice erotic song.
The Songs of Solomon, Chapter 4, Verses 13-16.
|13. Thy plants are an orchard of pomegranates, with pleasant fruits; camphire, with spikenard,
14. Spikenard and saffron; calamus and cinnamon, with all trees of frankincense; myrrh and aloes, with all the chief spices:
15. A fountain of gardens, a well of living waters, and streams from Lebanon.
16. Awake. O north wind; and come, thou south; blow upon my garden, that the spices thereof may flow out. Let my beloved come into his garden, and eat his pleasant fruits.
If in this song "Christ Setteth Forth the Graces of the Church" I would like to hear what he has to say about the graces of the female form.
Mothers usually sing their children to sleep with a sweet lullaby. To those devoutly religious mothers, who hold the Bible so tenderly and preciously, and revere it as the inspired word of God, and who are so anxious to have their children acquainted with the Bible and receive religious instruction, I question if even they would sing the following delicate verses from the Songs of Solomon, which are found in Chapter 5, and are captioned,
|"The Church Having a Taste of Christ's Love is Sick of Love."|
Can you imagine the audacity of the church itself saying it is "sick of Christ's love"?
The Songs of Solomon, Chapter 5, Verse 1.
|I am come into my garden, my sister, my spouse: I have gathered my myrrh with my spice; I have eaten my honeycomb with my honey; I have drunk my wine with my milk: eat, O friends; drink, yea, drink abundantly, O beloved.|
Eating and drinking abundantly have always been associated with the lustful and have never to my knowledge been symbolical of the church. Praying and fasting have been church functions. But to continue, and reveal the reason why the church became sick of Christ's love.
The Songs of Solomon, Chapter 5, Verses 2-4.
|2. I sleep, but my heart waketh: it is the voice of my beloved that knocketh, saying, Open to me, my sister, my love, my dove, my undefiled: for my head is filled with dew, and my locks with the drops of the night.
3. I have put off my coat; how shall I put it on? I have washed my feet; how shall I defile them?
4. My beloved put in his hand by the hole of the door, - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -.
Take your Bible in hand and finish this song for yourself. If you are particularly keen for literature of this kind, note well these verses taken at random.
The Songs of Solomon, Chapter 7, Verses 1-3.
By the way these are a "further description of the Church's graces."
|How beautiful are thy feet with shoes, O prince's daughter! the joints of thy thighs are like jewels, the work of the hands of a cunning workman.
2. Thy navel is like a round goblet, which wanteth not liquor: thy belly is like a heap of wheat set about with lilies.
3. Thy two breasts are like two young roes that are twins.
Evidently the songster was greatly enthused over the woman's breasts, for he again says:
The Songs of Solomon, Chapter 7, Verses 7-8.
|7. This thy stature is like to a palm tree, and thy breasts to clusters of grapes.
8. I said, I will go up to the palm tree, I will take hold of the boughs thereof: now also thy breasts shall be as clusters of the vine, and the smell of thy nose like apples.
One final quotation from the last chapter of Solomon's Songs and we will pass on to the next of the Bible's narratives.
The Songs of Solomon, Chapter 8, Verse 8, suggests this question:
|8. We have a little sister, and she hath no breasts: what shall we do for our sister in the day when she shall be spoken for?|
The Songs of Solomon, Chapter 8, Verse 14.
|14. Make haste, my beloved, and be thou like to a roe or to a young hart upon the mountains of spices.|
The above verse is interpreted by the learned Christians as being "The Church prayeth for Christ's coming," and this in spite of the fact, in a few verses back, she was sick of his love.
Only recently I heard a professor of literature in one of our largest universities say that the Songs of Solomon were valuable pieces of erotic poetry, but should never be in a volume within the reach of a child. He said they should be read only by mature minds in appreciation of their style of expression.
I do not wish to go into a lengthy discussion of these erotic songs, but I do wish to mention the fact that the English translation of them has been greatly modified. It is stated upon the most reliable authority that, in the original language, the Songs of Solomon are absolutely unmentionable. To classify these songs as being the love of Christ for his Church is one of the boldest pieces of insolence and mendacity in the hypocritical career of the Church.
Are the people so credulous as to believe that these erotic utterances were inspired by God?
The Book of Esther.
I had every intention of dissecting this story in the same manner as I have revealed the other items in the Bible, but the lewd suggestions and immoralities of this story are only a side issue to its main import. Compared with the stories already related, the story of Esther is a mildly sugar-coated narrative. But it contains a scene and a method of which no reader of the Bible should be ignorant and I will for the sake of exposure make mention of it.
It deals with a King who demands that his queenly wife enter the chambers of his drunken revelry, presumably wearing only her crown, to display her beautiful body before the eyes of his bawdy guests, for the Bible very plainly says, "she was very fair to look upon." When Queen Vashti refused to obey the command of King Ahasuerus to degrade herself, and was dismissed because she upheld her womanly honor, it took the King nearly three years, by his personally tested method, to find a woman to replace her in the Royal household. The details of King Ahasuerus's method of replacing the Queen beggars my prosaic pen, so I will let the Bible describe it for you.
I quote The Book of Esther, Chapter 2, Verses 12-13.
|12. Now when every maid's turn was come to go in to king Ahasuerus, after that she had been twelve months, according to the manner of the women, (for so were the days of their purifications accomplished, to wit, six months with oil of myrrh, and six months with sweet odours, and with other things for the purifying of the women,)
13. Then thus came every maiden unto the king; whatsoever she desired was given her to go with her out of the house of the women unto the king's house.
Mind you, for twelve months these maidens were being prepared in the Royal Beauty Parlor to favor the King. For six months they were anointed with oil of myrrh and for six months with "other sweet odours." Each and every one, after such treatment, must have presented a "dish" truly "fit to set before a King." This most "luscious" dish was "served" each evening to the King's taste.
The Book of Esther, Chapter 2, Verse 14.
|14. In the evening she went, and on the morrow she returned into the second house of the women, to the custody of Shaashgaz, the king's chamberlain, which kept the concubines: she came in unto the king no more, except the king delighted in her, and that she were called by name.|
"In the evening she went in and on the morrow she returned," is sufficient unto itself. Your imagination is not required for further elucidation. You are not asked to visualize what took place each night in the King's palace. "She came in unto the King no more, except the King delighted in her, and that she was called by name." This merely means that some of the girls were so captivating the King required a "second testing" in order to determine their acceptability. The closeness of the contest must have been thrilling to all concerned.
This testing method employed by King Ahasuerus by which a virgin entered his chambers in the evening and went not out until the morning, in order that he might select the most desirable one, consumed a period of nearly three years, and if the performance continued night after night, which no doubt it did, and the Bible leads one to believe it did, more than 1,000 girls were sacrificed upon the altar of lust.
But now for the triumph of the Jewess Esther.
The Book of Esther, Chapter 2, Verses 15-17.
|15. Now when the turn of Esther, the daughter of Abihail the uncle of Mordecai, who had taken her for his daughter, was come to go in unto the king, she required nothing but what Hegai the king's chamberlain, the keeper of the women, appointed. And Esther obtained favour in the sight of all them that looked upon her.
16. So Esther was taken unto king Ahasuerus into his house royal in the tenth month, which is the month Tebeth, in the seventh year of his reign.
17. And the king loved Esther above all the women, and she obtained grace and favour in his sight more than all the virgins; so that he set the royal crown upon her head, and made her queen instead of Vashti.
But before passing this story let me express this thought. This story of Esther once again reveals the complete reversal of what the Bible is supposed to teach. Instead of Queen Vashti being pictured as the Ideal of Womanhood, Esther, who prostituted herself, is set forth as the pattern and example for the world. Instead of the narration disclosing the true qualities that a woman should possess as Queen, the Bible details the most revolting method whereby a woman is selected for her lustful attractiveness. Not intelligence, companionability, sympathetic understanding, womanliness and love, but the choice bedfellow that she would make is the successful qualification for acceptance as wife and queen.
As I stated before, the real intent of this story does not belong technically within the scope of my subject, but the immoral performance of making more than 1,000 young girls submit to the embrace of a man that he may select the most satisfying one was too degrading an act not to call to your attention in unmasking the Bible.
The story itself, with its hideous vindictiveness, you are urged to read entire. Then you will be able to grasp more fully the real import of the story.
I now come to the end of the Old Testament and were I to insert as part of this book all the filthy sayings and lewd suggestions of this part of the Bible I fear I would never finish my task until I had copied almost word for word all that the Old Testament contains. But if what it contains, as already quoted in the preceding pages of this book, is convincing to you that the Old Testament is a benefit to civilization, then you are in perfect accord with William Jennings Bryan's statement "that the Jews have given to the Christian world its greatest heritage."
And yet, peculiar as it may seem, in exchange for this priceless heritage, the Christians have "given" to the Jews a series of persecutions unequaled in the annals of human warfare. This I suppose is the quality of the Brotherhood of Man that naturally manifests itself after a complete conversion to the Bible's precepts. History proves this contention to be true; do not the different Christian sects "love" one another to the point of slaughter and extermination? Does not the church itself grow "sick of love" according to the Bible annotators?
If you do not agree with William Jennings Bryan about what he believed the Bible has done for the human race, then possibly you are in accord with me when I maintain that the Old Testament is one of the most immoral books in circulation.
Notes for File 1; File 2; File 4; File 5; File 6; File 7