On her radio show sometime prior to 2004, Dr Laura Schlesinger said that, as an observant Orthodox Jew, homosexuality is an abomination according to Leviticus 18:22, and cannot be condoned under any circumstance. The following response is an open letter to Dr. Laura, penned by a US resident, which was posted on the Internet. It’s funny, as well as informative:
Dear Dr. Laura:
Thank you for doing so much to educate people regarding God’s Law.
I have learned a great deal from your show, and try to share that knowledge with as many people as I can. When someone tries to defend the homosexual lifestyle, for example, I simply remind them that Leviticus 18:22 clearly states it to be an abomination. … End of debate. I do need some advice from you, however, regarding some other elements of God’s Law and how to follow them.
- When I burn a bull on the altar as a sacrifice, I know it creates a pleasing odour for the Lord – Lev.1:9. The problem is my neighbours. They claim the odour is not pleasing to them. Should I smite them?
- I would like to sell my daughter into slavery, as sanctioned in Exodus 21:7. In this day and age, what do you think would be a fair price for her?
- I know that I am allowed no contact with a woman while she is in her period of menstrual uncleanliness – Lev.15: 19-24. The problem is how do I tell? I have tried asking, but most women take offence.
- Lev. 25:44 states that I may indeed possess slaves, both male and female, provided they are purchased from neighbouring nations. A friend of mine claims that this applies to Mexicans, but not Canadians. Can you clarify? Why can’t I own Canadians?
- I have a neighbour who insists on working on the Sabbath. Exodus 35:2. The passage clearly states he should be put to death. Am I morally obligated to kill him myself?
- A friend of mine feels that even though eating shellfish is an abomination – Lev. 11:10, it is a lesser abomination than homosexuality. I don’t agree. Can you settle this? Are there ‘degrees’ of abomination?
- Lev. 21:20 states that I may not approach the altar of God if I have a defect in my sight. I have to admit that I wear reading glasses. Does my vision have to be 20/20, or is there some wiggle room here?
- Most of my male friends get their hair trimmed, including the hair around their temples, even though this is expressly forbidden by Lev.19:27. How should they die?
- I know from Lev. 11:6-8 that touching the skin of a dead pig makes me unclean, but may I still play football if I wear gloves?
- My uncle has a farm. He violates Lev. 19:19 by planting two different crops in the same field, as does his wife by wearing garments made of two different kinds of thread (cotton/polyester blend). He also tends to curse and blaspheme a lot. Is it really necessary that we go to all the trouble of getting the whole town together to stone them? – Lev.24:10-16. Couldn’t we just burn them to death at a private family affair like we do with people who sleep with their in-laws? (Lev. 20:14)
I know you have studied these things extensively and thus enjoy considerable expertise in such matters, so I am confident you can help. Thank you again for reminding us that God’s word is eternal and unchanging.
Your adoring fan,
The King James Version quotes:
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Lev 18:22[KJV] Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination.
Lev 1:9[KJV] But its inwards and its legs shall he wash in water: and the priest shall burn all on the altar, to be a burnt sacrifice, an offering made by fire, of a sweet savour unto the LORD.
Exodus 21:7 [KJV] And if a man sell his daughter to be a maidservant, she shall not go out as the menservants do. [NIV] If a man sells his daughter as a servant, she is not to go free as menservants do.
Lev 15:19-24[KJV] And if a woman have an issue, and her issue in her flesh be blood, she shall be put apart seven days: and whosoever toucheth her shall be unclean until the evening. 20: And every thing that she lieth upon in her separation shall be unclean: every thing also that she sitteth upon shall be unclean. 21: And whosoever toucheth her bed shall wash his clothes, and bathe himself in water, and be unclean until the even. 22: And whosoever toucheth any thing that she sat upon shall wash his clothes, and bathe himself in water, and be unclean until the evening. 23: And if it be on her bed, or on anything whereon she sitteth, when he toucheth it, he shall be unclean until the evening. 24: And if any man lie with her at all, and her flowers be upon him, he shall be unclean seven days; and all the bed whereon he lieth shall be unclean.
Lev 25:44[KJV] Both thy bondmen, and thy bondmaids, which thou shalt have, shall be of the heathen that are round about you; of them shall ye buy bondmen and bondmaids. [NIV] Your male and female slaves are to come from the nations around you; from them you may buy slaves.
Exodus 35:2 [KJV] Six days shall work be done, but on the seventh day there shall be to you an holy day, a sabbath of rest to the LORD: whosoever doeth work therein shall be put to death. [NIV] For six days, work is to be done, but the seventh day shall be your holy day, a Sabbath of rest to the LORD. Whoever does any work on it must be put to death.
Lev 11:10 [KJV] And all that have not fins and scales in the seas, and in the rivers, of all that move in the waters, and of any living thing which is in the waters, they shall be an abomination unto you.
Lev 21:17 – 20 [KJV] Whosoever…hath any blemish, let him not approach to offer the bread of his God. 19: For whatsoever man he is that hath a blemish…, he shall not approach: a blind man, or a lame, or he who hath a flat nose, or anything superfluous, 20: Or crookbacked, or a dwarf, or hath a blemish in his eye, or be scurvy, or scabbed, or hath his stones broken damaged testicles].
Lev 19:27 [KJV] Ye shall not round the corners of your heads, neither shalt thou mar the corners of thy beard. [NIV] Do not cut the hair at the sides of your head or clip off the edges of your beard.
Lev 11:6-8 [KJV] And the hare, because he cheweth the cud, but divideth not the hoof; he is unclean unto you. 7: And the swine, though he divide the hoof, and be cloven-footed, yet he cheweth not the cud; he is unclean to you. 8: Of their flesh shall ye not eat, and their carcass shall ye not touch; they are unclean to you. [NIV] The rabbit, though it chews the cud, does not have
a split hoof; it is unclean for you. 7: And the pig, though it has a split hoof completely divied, does not chew the cud; it is unclean for you. 8: You must not eat their meat or touch their carcases; they are unclean for you.
Lev 19:19[KJV] Ye shall keep my statutes. Thou shalt not let thy cattle gender with a diverse kind: thou shalt not sow thy field with mingled seed: neither shall a garment mingled of linen and woollen come upon thee.
Lev 24:10-16 [KJV] And the son of an Israelitish woman, whose father was an Egyptian, went out among the children of Israel. And this son of the Israelitish woman and a man of Israel strove together in the camp; 11: And the Israelitish woman’s son blasphemed the name of the Lord, and cursed. And they brought him unto Moses: (and his mother’s name was Shelomith, the daughter of Dibri, of the tribe of Dan:) 12: And they put him in ward, [prison] that the mind of the LORD might be shown them. 13: And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, 14: Bring forth him that hath cursed without the camp; and let all that heard him lay their hands upon his head, and let all the congregation stone him. 15: And thou shalt speak unto the children of Israel, saying, Whosoever curseth his God shall bear his sin. 16: And he that blasphemeth the name of the LORD, he shall surely be put to death, and all the congregation shall certainly stone him: as well the stranger, as he that is born in the land, when he blasphemeth the name of the Lord, shall be put to death.
Lev 20:14 [KJV] And if a man take a wife and her mother, it is wickedness: they shall be burnt with fire, both he and they; that there be no wickedness among you.