Friday, November 8, 2013

The Bible Is Not X Rated Porn

Over at Religious News Service Jana Riess , who appears to have new book out , has a post up called The X-Rated Bible .

I have to admit I sort of am tired of this theme for several reasons when I see it .

First OMG there is sex in the Bible is something that has been written on a billion times and rarely nothing new under the sun is talked about.

Second there is often a attitude that Christians would be shocked if they knew about this and also indicates that many folks think a good many Christians are extreme prudes.

Last but not least there is little attempt to engage how Christian and Jewish tradition have engaged these texts in order to educate the reader.

Now to be fair I am not sure this is what Hana Riess is doing. This seems to be perhaps a more what should the  "Guardians of the First Amendment " ( Amazon etc ) be doing  as to books that talk about how to impregnate your daughter in a positive way. I get that argument and respect it.

However I think she is wrong when she says " But here’s the bottom line: The Bible would never pass these retailers’ litmus tests for objectionable content "

First I am not sure that is an accurate portrayal of the " litmus test " these folks are talking about . Now I do indeed find parts of  the question interesting . What is the line between books that glorify incest and some of the writing we see in Ann Rice books for instance like The Witching Hour ? Are we just left  with the famous  " I know when we see it " line  as to obscenity .

However the Bible is not Porn. It is  not Hustler , it is not Penthouse letters supposing that even exists now in the internet porn age  , it is  not even an Ann Rice book  , and it is not even really the  titillating Sports Illustrated  Swimsuit edition .

As one person in the comments said in part : " there’s a point you’ve missed here – yes, these events took place in the Bible (ancient Judaism was brutal at times) but they were not described in glowing pornographic detail for readers to get sexual “pleasure” from. That’s the difference...."

Exactly.

 Again I think she is trying to make a different argument here perhaps as to First Amendment values ( or maybe she is just trying to promote her book and who can blame her for that  ) . For instance I respect , like , and get the usefulness of an reductio ad absurdum arguement even though many of our nation's young elites don't get it. See Justice Scalia trying to explain this principle  to the kids at Princeton.


 However I do wish people would be a tad more careful in using caricatures of Scripture often used by the scoffers or at least be more explicit in what they are doing .

3 comments:

SJ Reidhead said...

I think the problem is her column doesn't make sense, is poorly written, and well - just plain old incoherent. What's her point, other than promoting a book?

SJR
The Pink Flamingo

The Underground Pewster said...

Typical Bible bashing. We need to bash the present day evils in light of the revelation of how God has dealt with us in spite of all the historical ones.

There are times I think NBC Nightly News and the advertisements shown during that time slot should be X-rated.

I guess the Bible is just an easier target.

James H said...

SJR

I suspect that was the main intention lol