Chick-fil-A Biblical Family of the Day

Chick-fil-A president Dan Cathy: “We support biblical families.”

Today’s Chick-fil-A Biblical Family Rule of the Day: Pastor’s kids (Leviticus 21:9).

When the daughter of a priest profanes herself through prostitution, she profanes her father; she shall be burned to death.

  • vsm

    Fred, would you mind doing something about this Winston Blake character in the Jephthah’s daughter and Women in the margins threads? All he does is spam racist tirades and Youtube links I don’t feel like opening. Several posters, myself included, have been flagging his posts, but it doesn’t seem to have any effect.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Ann-Unemori/100001112760232 Ann Unemori

    This sounds like the plot for the latest late-night horror flick.

  • Vermic

    This was the alternate ending to Footloose.

  • christopher_y

    Should this be interpreted as: “If the daughter of a priest engages in ritual sex in the temple, like those darned Canaanites and Babylonians, she shall be regarded as having gone over to the enemy and dealt with accordingly”? 

    Not that that makes it any better – worse if anything, but I’m having trouble with why the authors of Leviticus should be particularly worried about the possibility of priests’ daughters asking passing sailors if they’d like a nice time.

  • Jim Roberts

    My old Biblical studies teacher* said that every time you see the word “prostitution,” you should assume that the writer intends to say “ritual prostitution, plus whatever other kinds you can think of.”

    * No, really, he was in his 80s.

  • ReverendRef

     Not that this is any better, but . . .

    This chapter in Leviticus (21) is concerned with the behavior of priests, and is a subset of the Holiness Codes (17-26).  Priests were to be held to a higher standard than the general population.  There were strict standards for both behavior and physical appearance — no going near or touching dead bodies, no shaving, marry only a virgin (so none of this ‘if a man’s brother dies childless’ stuff), no physical blemishes, etc. — all because the priest had been exalted above other men and anointed with oil.

    This higher standard extended out to his family.  A position of honor required everyone connected to the priest to behave similarly. 

    Chrysostom said, “Even the daughters of priests . . . incur a far more severe penalty than do others for the same sins, because of their fathers’ dignity.”

    He was saying that the general offense for prostitution is punishable by death.  But whereas a prostitute of “ordinary people” was to be (probably) stoned, the daughter of a priest was to receive a greater punishment because of her status as a priest’s daughter; thereby “proving that God demands much more punishment of the ruler than of the subjects.”

    1) Know that I am in the office on my day off playing on the internet instead of working on the article that needs to be finished.

    2) Because of Number 1, I am not being as thorough as I want to be.  The closest I could find to Chrysostom’s argument was over in Deuteronomy 22 where a woman claiming to be a virgin at marriage was found not to be.  I suppose you could extrapolate that she had prostituted herself, but not sure if that’s where Chrysostom was pulling his argument from.

    3) In no way am I making the argument that burning your daughter is acceptable.  Just pointing out that the punishment is so specified because of her position.

  • Lori

    I’m having trouble with why the authors of Leviticus should be
    particularly worried about the possibility of priests’ daughters asking
    passing sailors if they’d like a nice time.  

    I imagine it’s a combination of the fact that ritual purity for priests was a BFD and a policy of collective family guilt, see for example: the story of the guy whose entire family was executed because he stole some money & a robe. 

    In that sense, setting the girl on fire is rather mild since the only person being killed is the one who actually committed the offense.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    This emphasis on banning ritual prostitution makes me wonder if Harry Potter fanfiction writers who might call themselves Christian know their Bible has things to say about it when they write about Harry et al incorporating sexual components in to magical rituals.

  • Vermic

    “like those darned Canaanites and Babylonians”

    This feels like a recurring theme throughout these books, like the Israelites defined their society by looking at what the tribe next door was doing and saying “That’s an abomination, we’re not doing that,” then repeating the process until they had a complete legal and moral code.  Human sacrifice?  Multiple gods?  Temple prostitution?  Graven images?  Our neighbors engage in these practices, therefore our god forbids them.

    And of course there are plenty of folks today who define their tribal boundaries primarily by the things they are against.  I wonder how different our world would look if the early Israelites had been just a little more broad-minded.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Ann-Unemori/100001112760232 Ann Unemori

    Now I’m starting to wonder about PKs, Preacher’s Kids, and how they’re held to standards angels couldn’t pass, and what happens when they finally snap and run amok, which many of them do.

  • vsm

     I’d imagine that when you’ve reached the point where you’re writing about Harry Potter doing sex magic, you probably aren’t all that concerned about every single thing forbidden somewhere in the Bible.

  • EllieMurasaki

    I never got the appeal of sex magic anyway. Magic to enhance sex, sure, I can see how it would be useful to have a way to reduce friction that’s less gloppy than lube, or a vibrator that never runs out of battery, or so forth so on. But sex magic, presumably the goal is something distinct from the sex. If you’re doing sex right, your mind’s not on that goal, which (with the possible exception of if it’s maybe-baby sex where the goal is baby) surely means the magic won’t work.

    Also once sex magic is put forth as a possibility, the sexual history of the participant(s) is generally brought into play. Usually by requiring a participant who has no sexual history, but however it plays out is skeevy and no.

  • http://dpolicar.livejournal.com/ Dave

     > I never got the appeal of sex magic anyway.

    For some people, a lot of the appeal of magic is not just the end result, but in the way the process itself engages them on every level. Achieving the same end result via a purely intellectual process, for example, would not be as satisfying.

    For some people, a lot of the appeal of sex is similarly in how completely they become engaged in the process.

    Were I in the intersection of those sets, I imagine I’d find sex magic a very natural extension of that.

  • EllieMurasaki

    …huh. Hadn’t thought of that.

    Let me clarify, then: never got the appeal of sex magic as I have always seen it employed.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    True. :P

    I don’t normally read fanfics like that because as EllieMurasaki points out, there is sexual history that can enter in, and it opens up all kinds of problematic interpretations.

    On top of that there’s a branch of fanfics that involve, shall we say, “Dark Revels” (usually to point up that Severus Snape would never engage in them like EVAR). Make what you will of that, ’cause I ain’t gonna read any to describe ‘em in more detail.

  • Shantastic

    I agree with you about the skeeviness of sex magic, but I have to admit that trope is a guilty pleasure. I don’t think I’d be comfortable writing stories with those elements, but I read the heck out of them. Mostly because I like to imagine the awkward conversations around the dinner table afterwords.

    “So, Harry, what did you do today?”

    “Well, Mrs. Weasley, I, er… engaged in a ritual that would save the wizarding world from dark forces.”

    “Oh? What sort of ritual?”

    “Well… um… it involved nakedness. And Ginny. And Ron. And Dobby.”

    “What? Excuse me?”

    “I swear, it was the only way to prevent the coming apocalypse.”

    “Are you sure? I don’t think you worked hard enough to look for alternatives.”

    “Well… we… there was a time crunch, you see. And it had to be all of us because, um… because… Come on, Ron, Ginny, help me out.”

  • Vermic

    “the coming apocalypse”

    You win an internet for this bit of wordplay, and I don’t even care if it was intentional or not.

  • Shantastic

    It totally wasn’t intentional, but thanks for making me look smarter! :P

  • vsm

    Sex magic in fiction seems to usually be an excuse to shoe-horn in a sex scene between characters who normally wouldn’t be having one*, which is indeed creepy. I can sort of appreciate sex magic when it’s done by the bad guys. It’s probably not very progressive of me (sex is bad, magic is bad, people who engage in both are double bad), but something like the ending to Polanski’s (Yeah…) Ninth Gate works really well on me.

    *If you ever find yourself considering playing a Type-Moon
    game, do not under any circumstances install the sex scenes. I still have nightmares about the mollusk similes.

  • ReverendRef

     Well, this PK became a P.  I didn’t exactly run amok, but there were times . . .

    I’ve tried to keep those standards and expectations away from Kid Ref.  She’s a good kid, and for that I’m thankful.  She is also very much her own person, and for that I’m also thankful.

    I’ll have to ask her in about ten years how she thought I did.

  • http://omorka.blogspot.com/ Omorka

    Yup, that’s it in a nutshell.

  • Anton_Mates

    Should this be interpreted as: “If the daughter of a priest engages in
    ritual sex in the temple, like those darned Canaanites and Babylonians,
    she shall be regarded as having gone over to the enemy and dealt with
    accordingly”?

    Modern scholars are pretty doubtful about the whole ritual prostitution thing (I can rustle up some citations if you’d like them).  Not that ritual sex didn’t happen sometime somewhere in the Middle East, but there’s not much evidence for any sort of large-scale official priestess-shagging.  The reports of it in Babylon and Corinth are from Herodotus and Strabo, and are probably a mixture of fiction-with-a-message and tall tales of the “you know what those Paris girls do” sort.  The main source for the Phoenician reports is Eusebius, a Christian writer of the 4th century, who was neither a first-hand observer nor the world’s most  unbiased commentator on pagan practices.  There’s zero evidence of Israelites ever engaging in it, AFAIK.

    What probably did happen was:
    a) priests’ daughters or female temple functionaries engaging in prostitution (or being pimped out by their fathers, if unmarried) for the same economic reasons as anyone else, and
    b) women promising an offering to the Temple as part of a prayer or religious vow, then turning to prostitution to pay for it.  (Even if they had wealthy husbands or fathers, one can imagine a woman making vows that she didn’t necessarily want those men to know about, in which case she’d need money from another source.)

    Not that that makes it any better – worse if anything, but I’m having
    trouble with why the authors of Leviticus should be particularly worried
    about the possibility of priests’ daughters asking passing sailors if
    they’d like a nice time.

    Well, it appears that prostitution was generally legal for unmarried women, as it was in Greece and Rome.  So if priests’ daughters were to be held to a “higher” standard, there probably needed to be a specific rule written about it.

  • christopher_y

    Now I’m starting to wonder about PKs, Preacher’s Kids, and how they’re held to standards angels couldn’t pass, and what happens when they finally snap and run amok, which many of them do.

    The only one who could ever reach me
    Was the son of a preacher man
    The only boy who could ever teach me
    Was the son of a preacher man
    Yes he was, he was, ooh, he was.

  • Carstonio

    I would have assumed that sex magic was about aphrodisiacs.

  • EllieMurasaki

    That too, I suppose. Which is also ripe for misuse. I mean, if Alice and Barbara are mutually desirous of sex at this time but Alice finds she’s not in the mood, bring on the aphrodisiacs (see also Viagra), but if the aphrodisiac is being used to induce a sex-desirous state in someone who does not want sex at this time and/or with this person, or someone who has expressed no opinion on the matter…

  • MaryKaye

    No practical experience with this kind of magic, but for magic in general it’s desirable if your intent and the means you are using to reach it are unified.  I imagine this applies doubly to sex magic.  So it shouldn’t be a distraction, if done right.  One would be striving for a state of mind in which one’s sexual passions and one’s magical intentions were pointing in the same direction.  Historically I think fertility-magic is the common application:  a very basic form is having sex in the ploughed fields.  If you can have sex to make a baby without it being a killer distraction, having sex to make the fields fertile isn’t much different.

    Wiccans who do sex magic are often doing it to unite themselves with the passion of the God and Goddess, which again seems like it wouldn’t have to be a distraction.  (And theologically requires, for most conceptions of those deities, that both parties are enthusiastically willing.)

  • Carstonio

    Dumb question – wouldn’t “desirous of sex” and “in the mood” be the same thing? Viagra alleviates a purely biomechanical issue.

  • EllieMurasaki

    Going off my own personal experience with a clitoris-and-vagina package, no. It is not infrequent that I decide I want an orgasm tonight, pull up one of my favorite pieces of porny fanfic, start going at it, realize several minutes later that nothing’s happening, and give up in disgust. I don’t know if that’s the same sort of thing for which penis-equipped people get Viagra, though. Or if what I describe is a thing that happens to anyone but me at all. It doesn’t seem like it would be, but.

  • Griz85

    I hate these gotcha verse games. They don’t contribute to meaningful discussion.


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