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Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

[NSFW!] Do non-Christ following people make peace with the admonishment in the Bible against using sex as a weapon?

Asked by Hypocrisy_Central (20230 points ) November 11th, 2012

[NSFW!] Now I know many do not believe in the Bible or it’s validity, however, do these same people find a way to agree and believe in the admonishment in the Bible that tells husbands and wives that it is a sin to withhold sex from each other unless during a time of prayer and fasting; which means even if you are mad at the other or have a disagreement you can say “I am too tired”, or “I have a headache”? The Bible admonishes husbands and wives to have sex and have it frequently; this is not me, it is God who said it, and I am sure many AGREE with that much of His word. If you do not follow Christ would you reject that with the rest of the Bible or that you can live with and be happy to do so?

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26 Answers

marinelife's avatar

I think to withhold sex or use it as a weapon is wrong irrespective of what the bible says on the subject.

I am sure that the concept predates the bible.

Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

Of course it did, but it did not predate God just because he did not inspire the prophets to write the Bible yet…...just sayin’

elbanditoroso's avatar

The bible has nothing to do with it.

Husband / wife is nothing more than a contractual partnership, dating back thousands of years, and well predating the bible. The man hunts and provides, and the woman nurtures the young, prepares the food, keeps the household, and – yes – provides connubial companionship to the husband.

That is basic anthropology – not just for humans, but for many other species.

And it will pre-dates the bible.

If anything, the bible tried to codify what is basic human nature.

Shippy's avatar

Well then it becomes rape really. I don’t think the Bible condones that? I hope most people don’t either.

JenniferP's avatar

It does say that but husbands and wives should show understanding toward their mate if they don’t feel inclined for some reason as long as they aren’t always coming up with excuses. The both need to compromise and adjust themselves to each others needs.

Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

@Shippy Well then it becomes rape really. I don’t think the Bible condones that? I don’t know what Bible you are reading but you better toss that on. To submit to your spouse for sex when they want it is not rape. The Word said that husbands and wives should submit to one another, not TAKE or force one another.

@elbanditoroso The bible has nothing to do with it For this question it has everything to do with it. If you do not believe the Bible has anything to do with it, the question is irrelevant and you believe what you want how you want to believe it.

Husband / wife is nothing more than a contractual partnership, dating back thousands of years, and well predating the bible.[sic] If one wants to see it as a contractual relationship or not it would still be against God notice the big ‘G’, like Bible has a big ‘B’, and the Word of God is more powerful then self-evident truths written by the forefathers that was basically useless until they penned it on parchment. The tenets of the Word existed from the beginning same as the oil in the ground was always oil in the ground. Just because no one discovered it in Biblical times don’t mean oil came into existence the moment an oil rig found it.

That is basic anthropology – not just for humans, but for many other species. So that I am not presumptuous please elucidate; what exactly do you mean, or how you see it?

BhacSsylan's avatar

This entire questions seems predicated on a false dichotomy, that people have to either follow Christ, or reject absolutely everything in the bible. That’s deeply silly. As the saying goes, “even a stopped clock is right twice a day”. It’s absolutely possible to believe Christianity is wrong, and yet that the bible has some useful stuff in it in terms of philosophy (and as @marinelife and @elbanditoroso have mentioned, the bible authors have cribbed from many other sources).

So, in general answer, I think that using sex as a weapon is a terrible idea, be it admonished in the bible or not. The fact that it’s in the bible has no particular bearing on it. Now, from the details, i think this: “it is a sin to withhold sex from each other unless during a time of prayer and fasting” is also a terrible idea. Sex is great, and should be a source of great pleasure (married or not, may I add), but there are also many reasons, far beyond ‘prayer and fasting’, that one may refuse sex, and those should be honored (again, married or not). This is where it gets into rape, as @Shippy mentioned. To tell someone that they are not allowed to refuse sex is to condone rape. And indeed marital rape was condoned (specifically, not considered rape, because ‘marriage implies universal consent’), using these types of arguments, for a very, very long time. Even in the US marital rape was not universally outlawed until 1993.

Unbroken's avatar

Yikes, marital rape does exist. It can start when there is some sort of unequal balance in need. One person seems to have a higher sex drive then another, so they are constantly asking another to submit instead of finding ways for that person to feel comfortable and secure enough to blossom.

By the way, that quote is from the Old Testament is it not? If I remember correctly the New Testament and Jesus’s sacrifice symbolized a change in religion a transformation, making the prior stuff a history lesson.
Personal note: thanks for reminding me how twisted Christainty is.

glacial's avatar

I’m confused – you are asking only the people who don’t believe the bible is truth – but then expect “it is god who said it” to hold any meaning for us? No, that doesn’t hold any meaning for us. It doesn’t make us want to do any particular thing more than we already would.

So, you’ll end up with responses that differ for each individual. If we think it’s right, we think it’s right. If we think it’s wrong, we think it’s wrong. God or the bible have nothing to do with it. And your statement “the Word of God is more powerful then self-evident truths” (written by whomever you please) is absolute nonsense to someone who doesn’t believe in a god in the first place. How can you imagine it would be otherwise?

Personally, I think some degree of give and take is required when one partner wants to have sex and the other doesn’t. If they are a couple, then presumably each party wants the other to be happy, and will make some sacrifices for that person. There shouldn’t be a winner or a loser here. But truthfully – do you care about our opinions about this specific sexual matter? Or do you just want us to tell you that we’re not interested in what your book says, so that you can rail against us?

tacres's avatar

Not stating either way to which belief I hold to be true or not….. I have perfected the art of sleeping through sex. If I’m not feeling the mood…. well why ruin his good time.
Sorry I am not not trying to be flippant just wanted to lighten the mood ( No pun intended)

BhacSsylan's avatar

@rosehips sources are a little… conflicted on that. Since Matthew says “Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or tittle shall nowise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.” (Matt 5:18), while Luke says ” The law and the prophets were until John: since that time the kingdom of God is preached, and every man presseth into it.” (Luke 16:16) and Romans states “For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace.” (Romans 6:14), and there are more sources for either interpretation. For the most part, it depends on the sect of Christianity as to which of the two ideas one holds. More liberal sects choose the later, while more conservative ones choose the former.

Also, @glacial “There shouldn’t be a winner or a loser here.” Well, one would hope there would be two winners. Just saying >.>

Unbroken's avatar

Haha. @tacres. It is getting thick in here.
@glacial thank you for your eloquent point making.
I was seeing red, too many lectures/seminars/sermons about subjugation, one day I will stop taking the bait, but not today. : P
Rationally: Though there is some validity to the statement it is very misguiding as a principal. As like most effective propaganda 70% truth, the rest spin and a gross oversimplification.

ragingloli's avatar

Sex is not a right, it is a privilege. Nothing wrong with withholding it.

Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

@BhacSsylan This entire questions seems predicated on a false dichotomy, that people have to either follow Christ, or reject absolutely everything in the bible. That’s deeply silly. I would not say deeply silly if you truly believe the purpose and veracity of the Bible. It is not an encyclopedia where the information came from independent sources. If you do not believe God is the author no matter which prophet ghost wrote it, then you do have to reject it all. If I showed you a photo and said it was of a lost tomb of some Sho-Gun recently found in China, if someone told you the photo was a fake, more than 30% was Photoshopped, how would you know which part was real, and from where, and what part was Photoshopped? Unless you recognized part of the photo as being an actual tomb somewhere, you’d have to reject the photo as a fake.

Now, from the details, i think this: “it is a sin to withhold sex from each other unless during a time of prayer and fasting” is also a terrible idea. Sex is great, and should be a source of great pleasure (married or not, may I add), but there are also many reasons, far beyond ‘prayer and fasting’, that one may refuse sex, and those should be honored (again, married or not). Of course you will, because you do not believe, if you did then you would understand why this is a good idea to do when fasting and prayer because you would know what fasting and payer was about.

This is where it gets into rape, as @Shippy mentioned. To tell someone that they are not allowed to refuse sex is to condone rape. Which miss the battleship by more than five miles. A parent can tell their child not to share whatever with other kids that doesn’t make their child stingy or the parent wrong for doing so; if there is a good reason for it. The child need not know why the parent told them, they just have to believe and have faith in the parent’s decision. Having the person who created you tell you not to abstain from your spouse is a little different from another mere man telling you if you abstain their will be negative consequence brought on by them.

@glacial I’m confused – you are asking only the people who don’t believe the bible is truth – but then expect “it is god who said it” to hold any meaning for us? I am NOT asking people who do not believe if the Bible is true, I know they don’t and until they believe cannot believe it is true any more than a pig on a hog farm realizes he will be bacon and ham before his natural life cycle expires.

And your statement “the Word of God is more powerful then self-evident truths” (written by whomever you please) is absolute nonsense to someone who doesn’t believe in a god in the first place. How can you imagine it would be otherwise? Exactly, the same as it would be for someone who doesn’t believe to try and make the case of what morality is or isn’t based solely off when the Bible was written. It all comes down to if a secular person can get themselves to at lease not flatly reject this one tenet because they can procure a benefit they want from it.

BhacSsylan's avatar

@Hypocrisy_Central ” I would not say deeply silly if you truly believe the purpose and veracity of the Bible. It is not an encyclopedia where the information came from independent sources. If you do not believe God is the author no matter which prophet ghost wrote it, then you do have to reject it all. If I showed you a photo and said it was of a lost tomb of some Sho-Gun recently found in China, if someone told you the photo was a fake, more than 30% was Photoshopped, how would you know which part was real, and from where, and what part was Photoshopped? Unless you recognized part of the photo as being an actual tomb somewhere, you’d have to reject the photo as a fake.”

Simply put, this is ludicrously false. I can believe the book is false, and yet believe it has facets that are usable in philosophy, by using my own reason and judgement. Quite simple. I can think a work of fiction has value, and that’s simply all I am doing. Do you believe that no work of fiction has any value? Must a given work be absolutely true for us to learn anything from it?

And I’d say, while a fake, that there’s still probably artistic value in said photo. And chances are, given reason, good judgement, and various image editing software tricks, you could, given time, determine which parts are fake and which are real.

“if you did then you would understand why this is a good idea to do when fasting and prayer because you would know what fasting and payer was about.”

I find it fascinating that you completely ignore my actual point, which was for times outside of fasting and praying.

And by fascinating I mean completely predicable.

“Which miss the battleship by more than five miles”

It doesn’t, you just think that god is outside of morality, and thus can command any sort of atrocity and it be fine. I reject this out of hand as barbaric. That’s that pesky reason and judgement again.

Also, a parent telling their child they have to submit? Still condoning rape. Now it’s just creepy as well.

bolwerk's avatar

I don’t know how rejecting the idea that the Bible contains literal and infallible truth from the lips of God Almighty turns into rejecting every single concept in the Bible. What do you do about the ones that contradict each other anyway? If you’re going to have marriage as an institution, I have a hard time seeing how you can say one partner imposing permanent chastity isn’t grounds for either letting the other partner have sex with others, and some couples do just that for various reasons, or divorce. There isn’t any reason I can see why those options shouldn’t be on the table, and there is no reason one partner can’t withhold sex occasionally.

But then, I really don’t see how you can turn such an admonishment into an edict under a Christian regime. I can see how Judaism can do it, and indeed some observant Jews act on that admonishment. Jesus certainly never commented on this directly in the Gospels, and I’m not aware of any particular rigidity on the subject from any other parts of the New Testament canon. Where subjects like this do come up, Jesus and St. Paul both seem to segue toward moderation.

@elbanditoroso: basic human nature is probably more somewhere between serial monogamy and polygyny/polyandry. I think the prevalence of breakups, divorce, and cheating alone should demonstrate at least that much.

Unbroken's avatar

Tiger got to hunt, bird got to fly; Man got to sit and wonder why, why, why? Tiger got to sleep, bird got to land; Man got to tell himself he understands.

BTW I’m with BhacsSylvan. Thanks for the clarification on the scriptures as well.

Curious though at OP. Seems a strange way to bear witness, or to try to convince someone any one for multiple reasons.

glacial's avatar

@Hypocrisy_Central Well, I will quite happily ignore your question (especially if you’re going to be so… charming… about our differences). But you are the person who asked for the opinions of “non-christ following people”. Perhaps you should flag your question, and re-word it so that it is addressed to people you actually want to hear from.

Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

@BhacSsylan I am not going to knock down each point of what you said with sound logic, it would take too long and go no where anyhow. Logically it is like this, if 5 years from now some engineer invents a sentient robot and wrote a book saying how he did it, why, and what the automaton can do, if you believed him a fraud or a fake you can’t say you believe chapter 5 when he is the author of the whole book; even if chapter 5 was actually written by his spouse. If you don’t believe the Bible is the Word of God, then you have to take it as a fake written by men.

@bolwerk I don’t know how rejecting the idea that the Bible contains literal and infallible truth from the lips of God Almighty turns into rejecting every single concept in the Bible. I am not saying that all concepts are bad from a logical or even emotional standpoint, but if you do not believe that God is the author of the Bible you would have to believe that those concepts were manufactured by mere earthly men, therefore, gutting the Bible of any real power or validity.

@glacial Well, I will quite happily ignore your question (especially if you’re going to be so… charming… about our differences). I am charming about your differences; I could open up the Lamb of Judah but I haven’t. I am listening to what is being said and it seem as though many are tap dancing around d the actual question like Gregory Hines. You don’t have to tell me how you feel the Book, the Word of God, is not real; I pretty much know that and what I am going to get.I guess I should have watered it down (being pleasant and not phasing it in ways I could have) to “The part of the Bible that says it is sinful for a spouse to withhold sex because of anger, disagreements, etc, if you will benefit from it would you ignore the fact God said it?”

glacial's avatar

@Hypocrisy_Central If it is something I already feel, then I don’t care who else has said it, or whether they said it before, after, or concurrently with it being my opinion. Similarly, I have no issue with taking advice from anyone of any faith. Are you trying to ask if we would choose a position in opposition to a biblical one just because it is biblical? Personally, no, I wouldn’t. I am still trying to figure out exactly what it is you are getting at – all I know is that your question and subsequent posts sound derisive and condescending.

Symbeline's avatar

Well, The bible says that it’s wrong to kill. I accept that, and I never needed it to tell me that. That said, using sex as a weapon sucks, and if The Bible really does say that one should have all the sex they want even if their partner isn’t up to it, all the more why I wouldn’t agree with a lot of what it says. But I don’t really understand what you’re trying to ask. :/ Do you mean that as a non believer, if I can somehow agree or disagree with something that The Bible says?

bolwerk's avatar

@Hypocrisy_Central: ”those concepts were manufactured by mere earthly men, therefore, gutting the Bible of any real power or validity” – what is so surprising about this? Most literate people probably do not take the Bible literally. It doesn’t mean the Bible no “power or validity,” but reading into it requires acknowledging it as a less-than-reliable source for history.

BhacSsylan's avatar

@Hypocrisy_Central “Logically it is like this, if 5 years from now some engineer invents a sentient robot and wrote a book saying how he did it, why, and what the automaton can do, if you believed him a fraud or a fake you can’t say you believe chapter 5 when he is the author of the whole book; even if chapter 5 was actually written by his spouse. If you don’t believe the Bible is the Word of God, then you have to take it as a fake written by men.”

You can make up all the wacky examples you’d like, you’d still be wrong. Because he’s a fraud doesn’t a) mean that the entire book is worthless (and if i rationally believe that section was written by someone else, that’s a good reason to maybe pay it heed) and b) doesn’t mean I must reject everything in it because he wrote it, which is what you seem to be trying to say. Just because he’s a fake doesn’t mean everything he did was a lie. And we have ways of finding what is right and what is wrong, through reason and judgement and, in this case, empirical tests of what he claims. That’s the genetic fallacy. Just because something was produced by flawed human beings (as all human products are) does not rob it of all worth.

And I find it hilarious you’re using that line against a scientist. My entire field is build around the idea of finding truth, many times requiring picking the facts out from lies. And before you try and respond that science is worthless, try doing it without the internet.

And since you can’t refute all of my points (what with them being right and all), how about you answer just a single question, which you ignored above:

Does no work of fiction have any value?

Shippy's avatar

@Hypocrisy_Central can’t answer you, your question is too confusing and a mix of ideas even my brain can’t fathom.

Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

@BhacSsylan Does no work of fiction have any value? Any work of fiction can have value but that doesn’t give it any more veracity than it has. When everyone knows it is fiction then you can glean what positive concept you want out of it. Even if the fiction includes real existing locations the story involving them is not real and has no affect on the real location. No one in the real would ever believe the fiction applied to the Golden Gate Bridge, Niagara Falls, etc. If it is a work or writing that is considered true, expounding true situations as well as concepts, if part is fake but you do not no unequivocally which part is, then it all becomes suspect.

BhacSsylan's avatar

You know what, I agree with that. The thing is, that in no way contradicts anything else I’ve said. A suspect account can still be true on some aspects, and it’s up to a shrewd investigator to determine what is true and what is false. Again, we need our reason and judgement to determine this. This is very true in, say, the case of history, where good historians often have to wade through large amounts of imperfect first-person accounts (and fraudulent accounts) and glean the truth from them. Just because most of these accounts are wrong in some aspect doesn’t mean that history as a whole is wrong. Just imperfect. Like humanity.

And yes, finding a falsehood in a work purporting to be true does throw the whole thing in a suspicious light! But that doesn’t mean that we must implicitly reject the entire thing, it only makes it suspicious. It means instead of taking it all on face value, me must look at each part and determine, using reason and judgement, whether or not it rings true. There’s no shortcut for us, no “aha, God said it, I need not think about it”, we must work for our understanding.

And I’d not have it any other way.

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