By Terry Loving
New American Standard Bible (©1995)
“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.”
(A relationship with God and eternal life is offered to “whoever” – male and female)
I received an email from someone named “J” – and I promised to reply to their inquiry. With their permission, my reply is this post, for there are many – especially women – who may feel the same way “J” does. Below is the unedited email:
“Comment: the woman in India has died, i read last night. she was gang raped. it is modern day Judges 19. where does God say He loves women, where does God say He hates the sin of a guy using God given strength to over power & beat & rape a woman to death like in Judges 19. He didn’t give women strength , He made them a target for pain & suffering. i need to know where He says its wrong to hurt women.”
First of all, YES! – God loves women! His only begotten Son died for male and female – everyone. Also, God has given women more strength and courage than we utilize for our own sakes. Sorry, I do not agree with, “He made them a target for pain & suffering.” I understand your anger over the rape and death of that precious Indian woman. The whole world should be outraged. However, God did not rape or murder her – those who were influenced by evil – harbor evil within their hearts – take pleasure in doing evil took her innocence and her life.
New American Standard Bible (©1995)
“You are of your father the devil, and you want to do the desires of your father. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth because there is no truth in him. Whenever he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own nature, for he is a liar and the father of lies.”
Although a horrible rape resulted in death in Judges 19 as well, I find that many people do not dig deeper into the story to find the ultimate truth. When tragedy strikes, too often we blame God for the happening, and quickly assume – in the case of Judges 19 for instance – that God favors men, and does not place a premium on women. Please understand that everything that man did in the Bible was not always justified in the sight of God, nor was everything permitted by God. Too often, assumptions are made to justify the doings of man. There are many examples in the Bible where men made decisions they erroneously believed would bring them favor with God, but ultimately – God was displeased.
“Behold, I have found only this, that God made men upright, but they have sought out many devices.” (devices = schemes, follow their own downward path, seek many alternatives, sought many inventions, looked for many ways [to avoid being decent]) – http://bible.cc/ecclesiastes/7-29.htm
The Levites spoken of in Judges 19 and Judges 17: 7-13 were viewed as men close to God, for they served in the Temple of God.
“Originally, firstborn sons were designated to be the holy tribe, the ones who would serve in the Tabernacle and the Temples, and be the spiritual leaders of our nation; G-d having “acquired” them when He spared them during the Plague of the Firstborn in Egypt. When the Tribe of Levi proved their mettle during the debacle of the Golden Calf, G-d removed the privilege of priesthood from the firstborns and instead sanctified the entire tribe of Levi.
Moses blessed the tribe of Levi, saying, “They shall teach Your ordinances to Jacob, and Your Torah to Israel.” Aside for their Temple duties, the tribe served as the rabbis and teachers of their Israelite brethren.” 1
“Michah” in Judges 17: 7-13
“17:7-13 Micah thought it was a sign of God’s favour to him and his images, that a Levite should come to his door. Thus those who please themselves with their own delusions, if Providence unexpectedly bring any thing to their hands that further them in their evil way, are apt from thence to think that God is pleased with them.”
Jewish custom places a high premium on hospitality.
In Rabbinical Literature:
“Among the ethical teachings of the Rabbis, the duties of hospitality occupy a very prominent position. Some regard hospitality more highly than the reception given to the Shekinah (Divine Presence); others make it superior to visiting the house of study; others, again, consider it as one of the six meritorious deeds whose reward is like a tree, the fruit of which man enjoys in this world, while the trunk remains for his enjoyment in the world to come (Shab. 127a). Special emphasis was laid upon the hospitality due to a scholar, so that it was said that one who shows hospitality to a student of the Law is regarded as if he had offered the daily sacrifice (Ber. 10b, 63b, Ḳid. 76b; Gen. R. lviii. 12).”
The old man in Judges 19 perhaps felt that he had two situations to defend, a Levite and one to whom he extended the hand of hospitality. In this case, it isn’t God Himself who is making the distinction, but man. Rather than suffer perceived consequences for allowing a son of the priesthood line and his guest be overtaken by evil men, the owner addressed the crowd in this manner:
“23The owner of the house went outside and said to them, “No, my friends, don’t be so vile. Since this man is my guest, don’t do this disgraceful thing. 24Look, here is my virgin daughter, and his concubine. I will bring them out to you now, and you can use them and do to them whatever you wish. But to this man, don’t do such a disgraceful thing.”
Again, this wasn’t a decision made by God, but by the man of the house and the Levite.
In the same way, Lot offered his daughter’s instead of the two angels:
“1The two angels arrived at Sodom in the evening, and Lot was sitting in the gateway of the city. When he saw them, he got up to meet them and bowed down with his face to the ground. 2“My lords,” he said, “please turn aside to your servant’s house. You can wash your feet and spend the night and then go on your way early in the morning.”
Lot also made the decision to offer up his daughter’s to evil men desiring to have sex with the angels.
“Here is my daughter, a maiden – Such a proposal was made by Lot to the men of Sodom, Genesis 19:8, but nothing can excuse either. That the rights of hospitality were sacred in the East, and most highly regarded we know; and that a man would defend, at the expense of his life, the stranger whom he had admitted under his roof, is true; but how a father could make such a proposal relative to his virgin daughter, must remain among those things which are incomprehensible.”
...”let me, I pray you, bring them out unto you, and do ye to them as is good in your eyes; this was a very great evil in Lot to make such an offer of his daughters; it was contrary to parental love and affection, an exposing the chastity of his daughters, which should have been his care to preserve; nor had he a power to dispose of them in such a manner: and though fornication is a lesser evil than sodomy, yet all evil is to be avoided, and even it is not to be done that good may come: nothing can be said to excuse this good man, but the hurry of spirit, and confusion of mind that he was in, not knowing what to say or do to prevent the base designs of those men; that he might be pretty certain they would not accept of his offer, their lust burning more after men than women; that this showed his great regard to the laws of hospitality, that he had rather sacrifice his daughters to their brutal lusts, than give up the men that were in his house to them; and that he might hope that this would soften their minds, and put them off of any further attempt; but after all it must be condemned as a dangerous and imprudent action:…”
Neither of these situations suggests that God Himself commanded the old man, the Levite, or Lot make such sacrifices. But one thing should be noted in both scenarios, the perpetrators were eventually destroyed. The rape and murder of the concubine in Judges 19 triggered a civil war. The rapists were of the tribe of Benjamin, and the elders refused to give them up to justice when commanded by the other Jewish tribes.
Prior to the general assembly of the tribes of Israel, the husband of the concubine cut her body into twelve pieces, representing the twelve tribes of Israel – and sent them each a visual impact of the horror that had taken place.:
“29When he reached home, he took a knife and cut up his concubine, limb by limb, into twelve parts and sent them into all the areas of Israel. 30Everyone who saw it said, “Such a thing has never been seen or done, not since the day the Israelites came up out of Egypt. Think about it! Consider it! Tell us what to do!”
In those days, Israel had no king, or magistrates to consider and punish this crime. Therefore, it was up to the people to decide what punishment the men of Gibeah should face – the death penalty was decided. The tribes of Benjamin refused to deliver up the malefactors of Gibeah to justice. The tribe of Benjamin took a stand against the united force of all Israel, fought against justice, and consequently against the just God Himself.
In Judges Chapter 20, you can read about the civil war which the rape and murder spurred. The Israelites obtained over the Benjamites in the third engagement. The first two times they went to battle they did not consult God, but assumed that their cause was righteous enough that God was automatically on their side – they depended upon themselves too much – assumption can be defeating.
After the war, there was a remnant of Benjamites, 600 men who took shelter in the rock of Rimmon for four months. The perpetrators were killed in the battle, and God gave the victory to the tribes that fought for justice and punishment of the evil men who raped and murdered to satisfy their evil lusts.
“In a similar way, Sodom and Gomorrah and the surrounding towns gave themselves up to sexual immorality and perversion. They serve as an example of those who suffer the punishment of eternal fire.”
When we do not “rightly divide” the Word of God, we often blame God unjustly. On the surface, the rape of the concubine may seem that God favors men over women, but this is not true. Not only did God stand for justice, He loved this woman enough to avenge the wrong she suffered. How many civil wars in our modern living were fought over rape, domestic violence, and injustice period? Today, we have the judicial system that Israel did not have; therefore, we have access to justice and retribution through our laws. Most importantly, God is a God of justice – He will avenge all wrong.
“where does God say He loves women, where does God say He hates the sin of a guy using God given strength to over power & beat & rape a woman to death like in Judges 19.”
I believe I have shown through this example how much this woman was loved, and how justice was served.
“He didn’t give women strength , He made them a target for pain & suffering. i need to know where He says its wrong to hurt women.”
We live in a fallen world, and we should not blame evil doings on God. Too often we get angry with God when a loved one dies, or is taken from us tragically. Humans want it all – free will, a God hands-off policy, and a Divine puppet. We do not want God telling us what to do, and yet, we want Him to be there when something happens to visually and instantly satisfy our need for justice and revenge. One woman stated to me a while ago, “God has some explaining to do!” She was barren and angry that God did not see fit to bless her womb. News flash, God does not owe us any explanation at all:
Isaiah 45:9 “Woe to him who quarrels with his Maker, to him who is but a potsherd among the potsherds on the ground. Does the clay say to the potter, ‘What are you making?’ Does your work say, ‘He has no hands’?
Romans 9:20 “But who are you, O man, to talk back to God? “Shall what is formed say to him who formed it, ‘Why did you make me like this?’”
Isaiah 64:8 “Yet, O LORD, you are our Father. We are the clay, you are the potter; we are all the work of your hand.”
“He made them a target for pain & suffering. i need to know where He says its wrong to hurt women.”
Throughout the Bible you can read where God hates injustice and wrongdoing. To say that God made women “a target for pain & suffering” is unjust. It is Satan who hates women, and all mankind. Our world is experiencing spiritual warfare like no other time in history, and yet – God gets the blame for all the bad things done in this world. We fail to acknowledge that evil exists and the fact that humanity has a spiritual enemy:
“The great dragon was hurled down–that ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, who leads the whole world astray. He was hurled to the earth, and his angels with him.”
New American Standard Bible (©1995)
“For this reason, rejoice, O heavens and you who dwell in them. Woe to the earth and the sea, because the devil has come down to you, having great wrath, knowing that he has only a short time.”
New American Standard Bible (©1995)
“Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.”
Job 1:7 “The LORD said to Satan, “Where have you come from?” Satan answered the LORD, “From roaming through the earth and going back and forth in it.”
“Your adversary the devil – This is the reason why ye should be sober and vigilant; ye have an ever active, implacable, subtle enemy to contend with. He walketh about – he has access to you everywhere; he knows your feelings and your propensities, and informs himself of all your circumstances; only God can know more and do more than he, therefore your care must be cast upon God.” Clarke’s Commentary on the Bible
As a roaring lion – Satan tempts under three forms:
1. The subtle serpent; to beguile our senses, pervert our judgment, and enchant our imagination.
2. As an angel of light; to deceive us with false views of spiritual things, refinements in religion, and presumption on the providence and grace of God.
3. As a roaring lion; to bear us down, and destroy us by violent opposition, persecution, and death. Thus he was acting towards the followers of God at Pontus, etc., who were now suffering a grievous persecution.
Satan is an enemy to mankind in general, but more especially to the seed of the woman, to Christ personal, and to Christ mystical, to all the elect of God:
The devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour. He goeth about as the lion, seeking for prey. The lion while hunting only roars when it springs. So the devil is stealthy and does not give warning of his approach.
Evil is not of God!
Question: Does God love women?
“Answer: This is an interesting question, but it certainly has a Scriptural answer. First let me remind you that it says in Genesis: “So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.” (Genesis 1:27) In other words it takes both the attributes of the woman and the man to see what God is like, since both are half of the picture (image) of God.” (Read more)
“I believe one reason Jesus may have appeared to the women first after He had arisen from the dead is because He loved them, but also because of their courage under fire that the male disciples did not show when He died on the cross. All the rest of the males had run away except for John. Mary, Jesus’ mother, and other women were at the cross when Jesus died.” (Read more)
“Who did Jesus stop to talk to on His way to Golgotha, was it not the women?” (Read more)
“Why else would these women have been so loyal to Jesus except that He had had a godly love for them! Who is Jesus? He is God in the flesh, what He was like is exactly what God the Father is like! Does He love women? certainly He does!” (Read more)
God loves wives so much that He stops listening to the prayers of their husbands if they mistreat their wives – that’s HUGE!
New American Standard Bible (©1995)
“You husbands in the same way, live with your wives in an understanding way, as with someone weaker, since she is a woman; and show her honor as a fellow heir of the grace of life, so that your prayers will not be hindered.”
In conclusion “J”, please read posts from this site and you will find many scriptures that speak to God’s displeasure of mistreating women, and one another period.
It is my hope that you have been enlightened, and that the Holy Spirit will touch your heart with truth. It is man that twisted the scriptures to paint our God and Savior as members of the earthly “good ole boys network.” That is the work of Satan.
Thank you for allowing me under the direction of the Holy Spirit to answer your inquiry. May God bless you with His everlasting Peace.
Peace be unto you.
“God does not make bad things happen, but religion most certainly can. Since the first words were written in the Bible, men have twisted it to justify their own beliefs, prejudices, and even their own dark desires. That truth is proven even more so in this film.” (Review quote)
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