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Terrie

College Professor Calls Christmas Story Creepy and Predatory

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Terrie

A local prof got himself on Fox News' hate list by calling God impregnating Mary "grossly predatory." He points out that God has a history of doing terrible things to those who tell Him no, so any consent she gave would be in question.

http://www.citypages.com/news/minnesota-state-university-prof-virgin-birth-of-jesus-was-grossly-predatory/502200381

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CTRLZero

Yes, a lot of the biblical stories can give me a rather squicky feeling when examined too closely.  Imagine the chaos inflicted on the brains steeped on Fox news when confronted with another side to the story. 

🧠:mindblowing:

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singsingsing

Well, I mean... I totally get the argument. I was a Christian for many years, I've read the entire Bible, and I tend to agree with the assessment many atheists have of the character of God in the Bible often being vindictive, cruel, abusive, and so on.

The thing is, he's God. Supposing this entity exists, he can do anything he wants to all of us all the time and any consent we might give would of course always be in question because he's an all-powerful, all-knowing, timeless being who created the entire universe, including us. Doesn't matter if what he's asking us to do seems good or bad, or if we really want to do it. God (in theory) could ask you to do something that you're absolutely thrilled about, and your consent would still be 'in question' because we're not talking about two humans, or even a human and a relatively more powerful being, we're talking about a human and the omnipotent creator of reality itself.

If the story were about God commanding someone else to impregnate Mary and Mary giving her consent because 'God said so', then I think we could talk about issues with consent (and there are plenty of stories like that in the Bible). I just don't think an argument like this works when one of the 'people' involved is literally God.

Edited by singsingsing
typo
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Black Aliss
52 minutes ago, Terrie said:

A local prof got himself on Fox News' hate list by calling God impregnating Mary "grossly predatory." He points out that God has a history of doing terrible things to those who tell Him no, so any consent she gave would be in question.

http://www.citypages.com/news/minnesota-state-university-prof-virgin-birth-of-jesus-was-grossly-predatory/502200381

And to make matters worse, the prof (who, I am guessing, had his tongue firmly in his cheek when he wrote that tweet) wrapped it up with the ever-incendiary "Happy Holidays". Poor Tucker Carlson. How he has managed to avoid a brain aneurysm all these years is nothing short of a miracle.

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JermajestyDuggar

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve read islamaphobes talking about Mohammad and Aisha’s relationship being “perverted and predatory.” Yet those same people are probably hopping mad over this guy’s tweet. 

It seems like a lot of religious stories can be pretty weird. But IMO, it’s usually a reflection of the times. 

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Terrie

I actually think it raises some questions that are worth pondering, about how we skip over things like Mary's age when we talk about the story. 

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Mrs. Bean

I’m going to be the devil’s advocate and point out that the same argument can be made against other religious texts and teachings, not just the Christian bible.

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Soulhuntress
16 hours ago, Terrie said:

I actually think it raises some questions that are worth pondering, about how we skip over things like Mary's age when we talk about the story. 

Back in the day and up until the last century (for most of us) underaged girls were married off starting at the age of 12 (this was considered somewhat progressive BCE).  BCE = Before Common Era. ;) It is horrifying for us but most religions had to set a minimum age.  Marie Antoinette was 15 when she was married.  This was a time when reaching 50 was a very long lifespan.

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Terrie
2 hours ago, Soulhuntress said:

Back in the day and up until the last century (for most of us) underaged girls were married off starting at the age of 12 (this was considered somewhat progressive BCE).  BCE = Before Common Era. ;) It is horrifying for us but most religions had to set a minimum age.  Marie Antoinette was 15 when she was married.  This was a time when reaching 50 was a very long lifespan.

Not actually true. Average life span was dragged down by the fact that ~30% of people died prior to age 15. If you made it to adulthood, you had a decent chance of reaching your 60s.

Most women were married early to mid 20s. Marriage required a certain amount of money and/or value from both parties, and the average young person did not have the money or skills to bring into a marriage.  Exact age would vary by time and place and how hard it was to establish the needed skills for a household, but it would be unusual for anything sooner than late teens to be the average age. Additionally, menses would have been later, and iin many cultures, that was a marker for being old enough for marriage. Even then, in an agricultual society, people weren't stupid. They knew younger girls would be less likely to survive preganacy and birth.  

Marie Antoinette is a classic exmple of the exception because she was married off to end hostilities between France and the Habsburg Empire. In those cases, all the normal rules went out the window. Which just goes to show, rich people have always considered themselves outside the rules. 

Sorry, my history nerd just slipped the leash there.

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gustava
23 minutes ago, Terrie said:

Not actually true. Average life span was dragged down by the fact that ~30% of people died prior to age 15. If you made it to adulthood, you had a decent chance of reaching your 60s.

Most women were married early to mid 20s. Marriage required a certain amount of money and/or value from both parties, and the average young person did not have the money or skills to bring into a marriage.  Exact age would vary by time and place and how hard it was to establish the needed skills for a household, but it would be unusual for anything sooner than late teens to be the average age. Additionally, menses would have been later, and iin many cultures, that was a marker for being old enough for marriage. Even then, in an agricultual society, people weren't stupid. They knew younger girls would be less likely to survive preganacy and birth.  

Marie Antoinette is a classic exmple of the exception because she was married off to end hostilities between France and the Habsburg Empire. In those cases, all the normal rules went out the window. Which just goes to show, rich people have always considered themselves outside the rules. 

Sorry, my history nerd just slipped the leash there.

Would you provide some links to data for Biblical times?  Not questioning your history lesson.  Just want to poke around.

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Terrie
25 minutes ago, gustava said:

Would you provide some links to data for Biblical times?  Not questioning your history lesson.  Just want to poke around.

I was talking more trends through history, than specifically "Biblical" times (which is a very long and varied time if you're talking alll the Bible).  So no data sources that are Bible-specific. Sorry.

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Lisafer

Well, if you take the Bible literally, impregnating a woman without consent probably wouldn't even be the worst thing God did...

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Soulhuntress
6 hours ago, gustava said:

Would you provide some links to data for Biblical times?  Not questioning your history lesson.  Just want to poke around.

https://www.bustle.com/articles/114490-the-average-age-women-got-their-first-period-throughout-history.  The Bustle article is interesting.  12 - 14 with adequate nutrition.

Medieval lifespans per the BBC   And Rome had a super high infant mortality rate.  Thanks @Terrie for the information and the chance to research a bit more.   

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tabitha2

I understand One of the apocryphal books  states she was 17. That’s very reasonable for the time. 

It is indeed a myth People married at 12 as a norm. For one In most cases a boy was still a penniless powerless apprentice at that age so what sane parent would sanction that?  

In royal circles Very young children and infants were married by proxy or the girl was sent to be raised by her future spouses family  but they were not actually married for several years. The instances when a grown man had to marry a child for dynastic purposes  the man usually  had a mistress and he treated his little bride like daughter or sister. Or just ignored her. 

 

http://www.theroyalforums.com/forums/f164/the-youngest-royal-brides-in-history-17081.html

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Lurky
6 hours ago, tabitha2 said:

It is indeed a myth People married at 12 as a norm. For one In most cases a boy was still a penniless powerless apprentice at that age so what sane parent would sanction that?  

Don't give the Andersons ideas (I know, I know a) a proper apprenticeship is out of the question for them, and b) "sane".)

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nastyhobbitses

I mean, I don't think he's wrong, but...religion's fuckin' weird, man. In general the Judeo-Christian God is just the definition of Chaotic Neutral:

"Hey Abraham stab your kid to death. LOLJK"

"Hey Abraham I know I just told you to stab your kid to death but I didn't actually want you to but would you mind cutting part of your dick off to show how much you love me?"

Jews in Egypt: Hey can we not be slaves? God: *shows up like 100 years late with Starbucks*

"Know what would really spice up your aimless wandering in the Sinai Desert? Me micromanaging how tall you can build your tents and what meat you are allowed to eat"

"Know what concerns me the most about you continuing to wander aimlessly in the Sinai Desert? Homosexuality."

"Hmm, how can I make the beings I CREATED AND GAVE FREE WILL stop sinning so much? Oooh, I know! I'll divinely rape a 14-year-old girl, make her and her husband raise the kid, and then I'll let that kid get tortured to death by the Romans!"

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Lisafer
3 hours ago, nastyhobbitses said:

I mean, I don't think he's wrong, but...religion's fuckin' weird, man. In general the Judeo-Christian God is just the definition of Chaotic Neutral:

"Hey Abraham stab your kid to death. LOLJK"

"Hey Abraham I know I just told you to stab your kid to death but I didn't actually want you to but would you mind cutting part of your dick off to show how much you love me?"

Jews in Egypt: Hey can we not be slaves? God: *shows up like 100 years late with Starbucks*

"Know what would really spice up your aimless wandering in the Sinai Desert? Me micromanaging how tall you can build your tents and what meat you are allowed to eat"

"Know what concerns me the most about you continuing to wander aimlessly in the Sinai Desert? Homosexuality."

"Hmm, how can I make the beings I CREATED AND GAVE FREE WILL stop sinning so much? Oooh, I know! I'll divinely rape a 14-year-old girl, make her and her husband raise the kid, and then I'll let that kid get tortured to death by the Romans!"

Also God: "The humans I created aren't acting how I want them to...I know! I'll kill off everybody on the face of the earth except the 8 people who met my standards."

"Kill every man, woman, and child in the land I've chosen for you. Don't worry, it's totes cool because they didn't worship me. Oh, and you can keep the virgins and rape them as a bonus gift."

Edited by Lisafer
typo

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smittykins

Or "I'm going to tell them they can eat from any tree in this garden, except ONE.  That'll totes not make it more appealing."

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nolongerIFBx
On 12/10/2018 at 1:30 PM, Terrie said:

A local prof got himself on Fox News' hate list by calling God impregnating Mary "grossly predatory." He points out that God has a history of doing terrible things to those who tell Him no, so any consent she gave would be in question.

http://www.citypages.com/news/minnesota-state-university-prof-virgin-birth-of-jesus-was-grossly-predatory/502200381

Well, being God, he knew that Mary would be willing eons before she was even an egg and sperm. Even then, He did give her a warning, didn't just spring this on her, and she gave consent (even if we want to say that her consent would be in question). The birth of a Savior was part of their culture and beliefs. Probably every woman wanted to be the one who would birth the Messiah. It wasn't convenient and she and her fiance did suffer because of it but I can't see it as "grossly predatory."

Luke 1:28 The angel went to her and said, “Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you.”

29 Mary was greatly troubled at his words and wondered what kind of greeting this might be. 30 But the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary; you have found favor with God. 31 You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you are to call him Jesus. 32 He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, 33 and he will reign over Jacob’s descendants forever; his kingdom will never end.”

34 “How will this be,” Mary asked the angel, “since I am a virgin?”

35 The angel answered, “The Holy Spirit will come on you, and the power of the Most Highs will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God. 36 Even Elizabeth your relative is going to have a child in her old age, and she who was said to be unable to conceive is in her sixth month. 37 For no word from God will ever fail.”

38 “I am the Lord’s servant,” Mary answered. “May your word to me be fulfilled.” Then the angel left her.

. . . .

48 for He has been mindful

of the humble state of his servant.

From now on all generations will call me blessed,

49 for the Mighty One has done great things for me—

(this doesn't sound like Mary thought she was a victim!)

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Terrie
1 minute ago, nolongerIFBx said:

The birth of a Savior was part of their culture and beliefs. Probably every woman wanted to be the one who would birth the Messiah

Why did I just feel every Jewish person I know collectively cringe? 

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nolongerIFBx
2 hours ago, Terrie said:

Why did I just feel every Jewish person I know collectively cringe? 

I don't get it- the foretelling of a Messiah was a part of their culture. Mary's song addresses how she was honored to be the one chosen to carry Him so she was aware that some woman would be blessed/exalted to get to do so. How would that make a Jewish person cringe?

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Terrie
1 hour ago, nolongerIFBx said:

I don't get it- the foretelling of a Messiah was a part of their culture [....] How would that make a Jewish person cringe?

For starters, you just used the past tence in relation to talking about Jewish people who are alive, well and still Jewish. Second, the concept of a messiah in Judism is very different from the modern Christian concept. You're taking a story that was written down by Chrisitans a good hundred years after the supposed events to determine Jewish views. Judism isn't "Christianity pre-Jesus." If you want to talk about what the Gospels say about Mary, go ahead. But do not project it onto an entire people. The whole thing smacks of Ann Coulter's comments on Christians being "perfected Jews."

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tabitha2

Not for nothing but If you think about it according to the Doctrine Mary was the vessel specifically created for the role...she was the Immaculate Conception born conceived without any human sin and purer than  Angels to carry His son. Refusal was never an option.Makes one wonder if she ever fit in, was considered the ultimate goody goody and a bore by the others. Then God gave her mission and she was fulfilled. 

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smittykins

I could be wrong(feel free to correct me if I am), but I think it's only Catholics who believe that Mary was conceived without sin.  I've heard fundagelical types say that "Mary was a sinner who needed a Saviour, just like the rest of us."

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formergothardite
19 minutes ago, smittykins said:

I've heard fundagelical types say that "Mary was a sinner who needed a Saviour, just like the rest of us."

I was always taught that Mary was a human just like everyone else and that was part of what made the story so amazing is that God chose a regular person to be the mother of Jesus. 

"Deity impregnates teen girl. Her fiance agrees to pretend like he knocked her up to save her from social shame." Sounds like some sort of crazy tabloid headline. 

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