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  #1  
Old 03-07-2006, 12:00 PM
Sampiro Sampiro is offline
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Do angels have a gender (also, Hebrew gender questions)

Are angels as described in the Bible (specifically the OT) male or neuter, or does it vary? What's the source for this also, please.

Also, does Hebrew have gender specific articles (like der/die/das in German or el/la in Spanish) or is it gender neutral like English?

Thanks for any info.
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  #2  
Old 03-07-2006, 12:05 PM
JustAnotherGeek JustAnotherGeek is offline
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IANA Biblical Scholar, but IIRC, all angels are male. I cannot recall any female "angels." Depending on how far back you go in Judaic history, there are some female dieties, I believe.

Everything I've learned about ancient hebrew religion comes from this book. I highly recommend the author (but the book is quite ... thick and it's a tough read.)

Oh, and I got nothin' on the articles.
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  #3  
Old 03-07-2006, 12:18 PM
gigi gigi is offline
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The angels are a different order of being and so don't have a gender. They may appear as men (e.g., Gabriel to Mary) but gender is meaningless.

Contrary to many people's, and Hollywood's, assumption, angels are not some manifestation of dead humans, so again gender doesn't apply.
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  #4  
Old 03-07-2006, 12:20 PM
toadspittle toadspittle is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gigi
The angels are a different order of being and so don't have a gender. They may appear as men (e.g., Gabriel to Mary) but gender is meaningless.

Contrary to many people's, and Hollywood's, assumption, angels are not some manifestation of dead humans, so again gender doesn't apply.
I don't think that follows at all--since God clearly has a gender in the Bible--male.
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  #5  
Old 03-07-2006, 12:22 PM
Lord Ashtar Lord Ashtar is offline
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Gabriel is the only angel who is specified as being female.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gabriel_(archangel)
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  #6  
Old 03-07-2006, 12:24 PM
Lord Ashtar Lord Ashtar is offline
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Okay, so that link doesn't show what I thought it would. I'll find a better cite.
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  #7  
Old 03-07-2006, 12:31 PM
Tevildo Tevildo is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sampiro
Are angels as described in the Bible (specifically the OT) male or neuter, or does it vary? What's the source for this also, please.

Also, does Hebrew have gender specific articles (like der/die/das in German or el/la in Spanish) or is it gender neutral like English?

Thanks for any info.
I'm afraid someone else will have to confirm the gender of the Hebrew words in question.

The "Sons of God" of Genesis 6:1-4 and the angels that judged Sodom in Genesis 19:1-22 are undoubtedly male. The angel that wrestled with Jacob in Genesis 32:24-40 is described as "a man", and I think we can take this fairly literally. The angel that appeared to Manoah and his wife in Judges 13:2-23 (predicting the birth of Samson) is described as "a man of God", and "he" and "him" are used as pronouns for most other OT angels (Numbers 22:31, Judges 6:13, Daniel 4:13, etc), including those angels that are explicitly named (Gabriel, Michael and Raphael). As far as I know, there are no references to female angels.

That being said, there's nothing in the Bible that definitely says _all_ angels are male. We have Matthew 22:30, but I don't really think it settles the issue one way or another:
Quote:
For in the resurrection they neither marry, nor are given in marriage, but are as the angels of God in heaven.
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  #8  
Old 03-07-2006, 12:40 PM
enigmatic enigmatic is offline
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Not that it's in any way helpful in terms of actual theology, but it was the ruling of my teacher on this matter that led me to vigorously decline the part of the angel Gabriel in my school nativity (in favour of Augustus Ceaser), age 9.

She was of the opinion that Angels are not one gender or the other, but both at the same time.
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Old 03-07-2006, 12:43 PM
toadspittle toadspittle is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lord Ashtar
Gabriel is the only angel who is specified as being female.
??
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  #10  
Old 03-07-2006, 01:19 PM
chappachula chappachula is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sampiro
Also, does Hebrew have gender specific articles (like der/die/das in German or el/la in Spanish) or is it gender neutral like English?
Hebrew is -- like most languages (other than English)-- saturated with gender. Every noun is either masculine or feminine, and the adjectives and verbs change their last letters to match the nouns.
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  #11  
Old 03-07-2006, 01:26 PM
Skammer Skammer is offline
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I can't answer the language question, but theologically, Chrisitanity (and I presume Judaism) assert that sex is meaningless when referring to spiritual beings - God, or angels. Sex is a characteristic of a physical body. Although angels may appear to take human form (such as the 'man' who wrestled with Jacob), maleness or femaleness is not an inherent part of their being.

God and angels may be referred to using male pronouns, but that was not understood to mean that they are equipped with penises.
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  #12  
Old 03-07-2006, 02:12 PM
toadspittle toadspittle is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skammer
I can't answer the language question, but theologically, Chrisitanity (and I presume Judaism) assert that sex is meaningless when referring to spiritual beings - God, or angels. Sex is a characteristic of a physical body. Although angels may appear to take human form (such as the 'man' who wrestled with Jacob), maleness or femaleness is not an inherent part of their being.

God and angels may be referred to using male pronouns, but that was not understood to mean that they are equipped with penises.
Cite, please.

Also, note that your implication that God has no physical body would seem to be at odds with the idea of the resurrected Jesus having a very definite physical body--something sects of Christianity have fought vigorously over.
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Old 03-07-2006, 02:22 PM
Skammer Skammer is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by toadspittle
Cite, please.

Also, note that your implication that God has no physical body would seem to be at odds with the idea of the resurrected Jesus having a very definite physical body--something sects of Christianity have fought vigorously over.
I'll find a cite, but I wasn't referring to Jesus. The person of Jesus is both fully God and fully human - but he is male by virtue of his humanity, not his divinity. He's sort of a special case.
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  #14  
Old 03-07-2006, 02:33 PM
Captain Amazing Captain Amazing is offline
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In Jewish thought, angels are manifestations of divine thought...the messengers of God. They therefore manifest themselves however God wants them to manifest, whether as men (or women, hypothetically), as fire in a bush, as a pillar of fire and clouds, as lightning. There are three mentioned by name in the bible...Michael, Gabriel, and Satan, none of whom are given any gender, and then others in later, post biblical books (Uriel, Raphael, Peniel, Metatron)
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  #15  
Old 03-07-2006, 02:36 PM
Skammer Skammer is offline
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While I look for something more authoritative, here is what one priest has to say:
Quote:
Q. Are angels male or female? What do you say about angels? J. K., Spokane, Wash.

A. The author of "Angel Talk" should answer this one! Angels are created Pure Spirits who have a higher intellect and will than man. They have no bodies and therefore cannot be male or female.
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  #16  
Old 03-07-2006, 02:57 PM
Sampiro Sampiro is offline
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I'll admit that one reason I was wondering about this is the Sodom story and how it's used to justify homophobia ('man on man rape=gay' [if it was rape rather than literally "knowing them" the mob was demanding). If angels have no definite gender, why would the mob's desire to rape them be considered homosexual?

To me, even as a kid it always made more sense that the mob literally wanted to "know them" as in "Who are these people? Bring 'em out here and let us talk to them". Angels clearly have something that sets them apart in appearance from humans- one of the most common things they say in the Bible is "don't be afraid" and everybody who sees one knows instantly that they're not a human. To paranoid fortified community dwellers, the presence of "not exactly human" entities (brought in by a non-native no less) would seem to warrant a "let us get to know these people" more than a "ooh yeah! bring the ball gags... that's what I'm talkin' about!" reaction.)

I may be completely wrong.
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  #17  
Old 03-07-2006, 03:11 PM
Alessan Alessan is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chappachula
Hebrew is -- like most languages (other than English)-- saturated with gender. Every noun is either masculine or feminine, and the adjectives and verbs change their last letters to match the nouns.
True, but the definite article (Hebrew has no indefinite article) is gender-neutral.
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  #18  
Old 03-07-2006, 03:27 PM
Cunctator Cunctator is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lord Ashtar
Gabriel is the only angel who is specified as being female.
I've only ever seen Gabriel portrayed as male. That's the position of the Catholic Encyclopaedia.

As for the sex of angels, I'd agree with what gigi said.
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  #19  
Old 03-07-2006, 04:16 PM
Ludovic Ludovic is offline
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Angels don't make love: angels ARE love.
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  #20  
Old 03-07-2006, 04:50 PM
Captain Amazing Captain Amazing is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sampiro
I'll admit that one reason I was wondering about this is the Sodom story and how it's used to justify homophobia ('man on man rape=gay' [if it was rape rather than literally "knowing them" the mob was demanding). If angels have no definite gender, why would the mob's desire to rape them be considered homosexual?
Well, in the Sodom story, whether the angels actually had a gender really isn't relevant to that. It's clear in the story that they took the form of men, and that the people of Sodom thought they were men.
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  #21  
Old 03-07-2006, 05:02 PM
Sampiro Sampiro is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ludovic
Angels don't make love: angels ARE love.
That is literally the world's oldest pickup line, dating back to a fruit tree in Mesopotamia ca. 4004 BCE.
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  #22  
Old 03-08-2006, 12:47 AM
Sampiro Sampiro is offline
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When Greek gods came down to associate with mortals or cruise chicks, they usually took another guise (swans, bulls, husbands, etc.). Semele (mother of Dionysos) was actually killed/incinertated when she looked upon Zeus in his true form.

Angels and G_d also take guises in the Bible. I wonder what the connection is.
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  #23  
Old 03-08-2006, 01:45 AM
dtilque dtilque is online now
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I think a quote from Gustav Davidson's A Dictionary of Angels is apropos here:

Quote:
Female Angels -- in Jewish occult lore, female angels are rare (the Shekinah is one). In gnostic lore there is, pre-eminently, Pistis Sophia ("faith, knowledge"), a great female aeon or archon, or angel. In Arabic legend, female angels are not uncommon and were often the objects of worship or veneration; they were called benad hasche, that is, daughters of God.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain Amazing
There are three mentioned by name in the bible...Michael, Gabriel, and Satan, none of whom are given any gender, and then others in later, post biblical books (Uriel, Raphael, Peniel, Metatron)
That depends on whose bible you're talking about. The Book of Tobit (or Tobias) is canonical in the Catholic and Orthodox bibles and Raphael plays an important role in that.
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  #24  
Old 03-08-2006, 02:21 AM
psychonaut psychonaut is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gigi
The angels are a different order of being and so don't have a gender.
That's a non sequitur. Animals and plants are also different orders of being, yet most of them have gender.
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Old 03-08-2006, 04:25 AM
Malacandra Malacandra is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sampiro
I'll admit that one reason I was wondering about this is the Sodom story and how it's used to justify homophobia ('man on man rape=gay' [if it was rape rather than literally "knowing them" the mob was demanding). If angels have no definite gender, why would the mob's desire to rape them be considered homosexual?

To me, even as a kid it always made more sense that the mob literally wanted to "know them" as in "Who are these people? Bring 'em out here and let us talk to them". Angels clearly have something that sets them apart in appearance from humans- one of the most common things they say in the Bible is "don't be afraid" and everybody who sees one knows instantly that they're not a human. To paranoid fortified community dwellers, the presence of "not exactly human" entities (brought in by a non-native no less) would seem to warrant a "let us get to know these people" more than a "ooh yeah! bring the ball gags... that's what I'm talkin' about!" reaction.)

I may be completely wrong.
You may be completely right. But isn't it only the King James bible that uses "know" as a euphemism for "have sex with", and isn't an answer available by consulting another version - preferably derived from the source texts and not the AV - in which there isn't this ambiguity? Or indeed by going to the source?

(I'm more of the "Sodom was indeed full of depraved homosexual rapists, but that was only a symptom of what a hellhole it was; it was rotten to the core, and that's what got it the fire-and-brimstone cure" school of thought, myself)

Ball gags? Nah, more fun to hear the little piggies squeal...
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  #26  
Old 03-08-2006, 06:17 AM
Tevildo Tevildo is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Malacandra
You may be completely right. But isn't it only the King James bible that uses "know" as a euphemism for "have sex with", and isn't an answer available by consulting another version - preferably derived from the source texts and not the AV - in which there isn't this ambiguity? Or indeed by going to the source?
The word used in Hebrew is Ya,da´, and "know" is a literal translation of it. It almost certainly is a euphemism in this passage, as it is in Genesis 4:1 - "And Adam knew Eve his wife, and she concieved", Genesis 4:25 - " And Adam knew his wife again; and she bare a son, and called his name Seth", etc. For a very close parallel:

Judges 19:25 :
Quote:
But the men would not hearken to him: so the man took his concubine, and brought her forth unto them; and they knew her, and abused her all the night until the morning: and when the day began to spring, they let her go.
In the light of the above, I would agree with your interpretation of Genesis 19.

A digression. The KJV is generally a better resource for literal translations than most modern versions, certainly far better than the NIV. However, it doesn't use the most reliable source texts, and some of its English vocabulary is rather archaic these days.
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  #27  
Old 03-08-2006, 06:59 AM
Captain Amazing Captain Amazing is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dtilque
That depends on whose bible you're talking about. The Book of Tobit (or Tobias) is canonical in the Catholic and Orthodox bibles and Raphael plays an important role in that.
Right, which is why I specified "in Judaism". I can't tell you about other religions' holy books.
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  #28  
Old 03-08-2006, 08:19 AM
gigi gigi is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by psychonaut
That's a non sequitur. Animals and plants are also different orders of being, yet most of them have gender.
OK, angels are a different order of being from anything created on the earth. They aren't similar to humans, plants or animals, and are not related to dead humans at all.
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  #29  
Old 03-08-2006, 08:40 AM
smiling bandit smiling bandit is offline
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OK, people, as far as actual fact goes, we don't know anything about Angel's sex. Maybe they do have male and female. Maybe they have other things. We don't know nor is it relevant, since they probably don't feel much urge to "know" (*wink*) each other.

Of course, it might be amusing if they had other kinds of sexual characteristics... Couldn't you see al the male angels standing around Heaven's alleyway drinking beer and sayin' "Yep."? Couldn't you see all the female angels sitting chatting all day at 7,000 words per second? Couldn't you see both groups launching the biggest flame ever on Smiling Bandit? *Ducks flamefest he unleashed*
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  #30  
Old 03-08-2006, 03:47 PM
Elendil's Heir Elendil's Heir is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skammer
I'll find a cite, but I wasn't referring to Jesus. The person of Jesus is both fully God and fully human - but he is male by virtue of his humanity, not his divinity. He's sort of a special case.
...and we have a WINNER in the Straight Dope "Understatement of the Year" contest!
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  #31  
Old 03-08-2006, 05:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by enigmatic
She was of the opinion that Angels are not one gender or the other, but both at the same time.
Then it's safe to tell an angel, "Go f___ yourself?"
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  #32  
Old 03-08-2006, 05:24 PM
Johanna Johanna is offline
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In Arabic the word for angel is malak in the singular, which is grammatically masculine. However, the singular form of this word isn't used much in the Qur’an. It does use the plural form of the word very frequently: mala’ikah, which is feminine.

This Arabic feminine plural was borrowed into Swahili as a singular noun meaning 'angel', used in love songs for women, as in the hit song "Nakupenda Malaika" (I love you, angel), recorded by Miriam Makeba, that was so popular all over Africa in the 1960s.
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  #33  
Old 03-08-2006, 10:32 PM
cwthree cwthree is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tevildo
The word used in Hebrew is Ya,da´, and "know" is a literal translation of it. It almost certainly is a euphemism in this passage, as it is in Genesis 4:1 - "And Adam knew Eve his wife, and she concieved", Genesis 4:25 - " And Adam knew his wife again; and she bare a son, and called his name Seth", etc. .
Cite? I see no reason that it shouldn't be read as "know who they are." We're given no other context to suggest that the crowd was there to rape the visitors. Lot's offer of his daughters suggests that he though he might appeal to the men's lust in order to distract them from what he presumed to be their murderous inclinations.
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  #34  
Old 03-09-2006, 12:51 AM
Tevildo Tevildo is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cwthree
Cite? I see no reason that it shouldn't be read as "know who they are." We're given no other context to suggest that the crowd was there to rape the visitors. Lot's offer of his daughters suggests that he though he might appeal to the men's lust in order to distract them from what he presumed to be their murderous inclinations.
Well, we can't _prove_ that it's a euphemism in Genesis 19 - it _might_ be meant literally, although I personally think it's unlikely.

Do you agree that it's a euphemism for sex in Genesis 4:25, quoted above? And let's look at the whole passage from Judges: Judges 19:22-26.
Quote:
Now as they were making their hearts merry, behold, the men of the city, certain sons of Belial, beset the house round about, and beat at the door, and spake to the master of the house, the old man, saying, Bring forth the man that came into thine house, that we may know him. And the man, the master of the house, went out unto them, and said unto them, Nay, my brethren, nay, I pray you, do not so wickedly; seeing that this man is come into mine house, do not this folly. Behold, here is my daughter a maiden, and his concubine; them I will bring out now, and humble ye them, and do with them what seemeth good unto you: but unto this man do not so vile a thing. But the men would not hearken to him: so the man took his concubine, and brought her forth unto them; and they knew her, and abused her all the night until the morning: and when the day began to spring, they let her go. Then came the woman in the dawning of the day, and fell down at the door of the man's house where her lord was, till it was light.
"Know" is both what the "sons of Belial" wanted to do to the man, and what they actually did to the concubine. It _might_ not be sex, but it's (a) a "vile thing" that is (b) described as "abuse". I find it difficult to imagine anything else it might be; it certainly isn't just "making the acquaintance of", which would be the literal meaning of the word.
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  #35  
Old 03-09-2006, 01:48 AM
Sampiro Sampiro is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tevildo
Well, we can't _prove_ that it's a euphemism in Genesis 19 - it _might_ be meant literally, although I personally think it's unlikely.

Do you agree that it's a euphemism for sex in Genesis 4:25, quoted above? And let's look at the whole passage from Judges: Judges 19:22-26.

"Know" is both what the "sons of Belial" wanted to do to the man, and what they actually did to the concubine.
No, they didn't know the concubine. They abused, humbled and [did] what seemeth good to the concubine. It is not possible that the vile thing they wanted to do to the man was perhaps beat and rob and harass him, but they decided gang raping his concubine was fun enough and still a good way of teaching the man a lesson (that being "don't come here")? (In either case, for the way he treats his concubine afterwards the Levite in that section is quite possibly the most despicable character in the entire OT not to be specifically stated as in league with the devil, and that's saying something.)
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  #36  
Old 03-09-2006, 02:19 AM
Tevildo Tevildo is offline
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Originally Posted by Sampiro
No, they didn't "know" the concubine. They abused, humbled and [did] what seemeth good to the concubine.
Well, strictly speaking, the old man (the host) invited them to "humble" and "do what seemed good to them" to both the concubine and the Levite's daughter, and what they actually did was "know" and "abuse" the concubine.
Quote:
It is not possible that the vile thing they wanted to do to the man was perhaps beat and rob and harass him, but they decided gang raping his concubine was fun enough and still a good way of teaching the man a lesson (that being "don't come here")?
I assume you mean "Is it not possible?"? Yes, I agree. Nothing explicit is said - I think we can be confident that violence is involved, and I would still suggest that it may have had a sexual component, but I accept that we can't say for certain that the mob's initial motivation was sexual.
Quote:
In either case, for the way he treats his concubine afterwards the Levite in that section is quite possibly the most despicable character in the entire OT not to be specifically stated as in league with the devil, and that's saying something.
Very true. The Levite's description of the incident in Judges 20:5 isn't exactly a model of accuracy:
Quote:
And the men of Gibeah rose against me, and beset the house round about upon me by night, and thought to have slain me: and my concubine have they forced, that she is dead.
However, I accept it's valid to make the point that he claims to have been in fear of his life, rather than his - virtue, for want of a better word.

Reading between the lines, it looks as though the whole thing was designed to provoke a war between Israel and Gibeah; nobody really comes out of it with much credit, but human nature is unfortunately like that.

On the primary issue, I'll retreat to Genesis 4:25 and 1 Samuel 1:19. I don't think there's a way of interpreting "know" as anything other than a euphemism for sex in those passages.
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  #37  
Old 03-09-2006, 05:40 AM
Malacandra Malacandra is offline
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And from Matthew 1:
[24] Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife:
[25] And knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name JESUS.

--which you'll struggle to parse as "did not make the acquaintance of".
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  #38  
Old 03-09-2006, 05:50 AM
Tevildo Tevildo is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Malacandra
And from Matthew 1:
[24] Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife:
[25] And knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name JESUS.

--which you'll struggle to parse as "did not make the acquaintance of".
Indeed. And, just to clarify, "know" is also a literal translation of the Greek ἐγίνωσκεν in this passage.
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  #39  
Old 03-09-2006, 06:58 AM
DocCathode DocCathode is offline
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Originally Posted by toadspittle
I don't think that follows at all--since God clearly has a gender in the Bible--male.
Except that when reading the OT in the original Hebrew some of the names of G-d are female, and some are plural.
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  #40  
Old 03-09-2006, 07:06 AM
Malacandra Malacandra is offline
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Originally Posted by Tevildo
Indeed. And, just to clarify, "know" is also a literal translation of the Greek ἐγίνωσκεν in this passage.
Dude. When do we inaugurate the mutual admiration society?
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  #41  
Old 03-09-2006, 07:34 AM
Gymnopithys Gymnopithys is offline
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I read once that, in Arab traditions, angels are male homosexual beings...
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  #42  
Old 03-09-2006, 07:49 AM
Doctor Jackson Doctor Jackson is offline
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And I read once that there are angels in the outfield. So?

I don't think you'll find any direct Biblical reference to the gender(s) of angels except in their incarnate state. Christian tradition predominately describes angels as spiritual beings with no physical body, but with the ability to manifest themselves to us in any form God chooses.
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  #43  
Old 03-09-2006, 08:00 AM
Malacandra Malacandra is offline
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Originally Posted by Gymnopithys
I read once that, in Arab traditions, angels are male homosexual beings...
I thought that was just Philip Pullman?
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  #44  
Old 03-09-2006, 09:23 AM
spingears spingears is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sampiro
Are angels as described in the Bible (specifically the OT) male or neuter, or does it vary? What's the source for this also, please.
Jesus said; " Ye do err, not knowing the scriptures, nor the power of God.

For in the resurrection they neither marry, nor are given in marriage, but are as the angels of God in heaven. Matthew 22:29-30

IOW the angels are sexless or neuter beings.
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  #45  
Old 03-09-2006, 09:32 AM
DocCathode DocCathode is offline
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The Apocryphal Book Of Enoch, and the traditions that led to its creation, state that angels are male.

There are two lines in Genesis "The Nephilim were in the earth in those days." and "The sons of heaven abandoned their duties and fell for the daughters of men."

Those two lines led to a tradition that G-d had set a group of angels called the Watchers or the Grigori to observe, guard and instruct humanity. The Watchers left their posts, quit serving G-d, and had a bunch of sex with human women. The offspring of these unions were Nephilim, who had great powers and were giants.

OTOH

Nephilim is used that one time and never again. This makes it very hard to know what the heck it means.

"The sons of heaven" could refer to angels, but it could also refer to human scholars and priests. Leaders neglecting their duties to G-d and their people in order to satisfy their own desires is a running theme in the OT.
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  #46  
Old 03-09-2006, 09:44 AM
Sampiro Sampiro is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Malacandra
And from Matthew 1:
[24] Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife:
[25] And knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name JESUS.

--which you'll struggle to parse as "did not make the acquaintance of".
So later in Matthew when Jesus says

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jesus
All things are delivered unto me of my Father: and no man knoweth the Son, but the Father; neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son
is he saying "don't screw with me?" or what?
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  #47  
Old 03-09-2006, 09:46 AM
Tevildo Tevildo is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spingears
Jesus said; " Ye do err, not knowing the scriptures, nor the power of God.

For in the resurrection they neither marry, nor are given in marriage, but are as the angels of God in heaven. Matthew 22:29-30

IOW the angels are sexless or neuter beings.
That's not how Milton interprets it.
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  #48  
Old 03-09-2006, 09:57 AM
Tevildo Tevildo is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sampiro
is he saying "don't screw with me?" or what?
Euphemism

Most uses of "know" in the Bible are literal. Some are undoubtedly euphemistic. Some may be debatable, although I personally think it's obvious which side of the line each example falls.

Another Biblical euphemism for sex is "go in to". For five points - which of these is euphemistic?

1 Chron 7:23
Quote:
And when he went in to his wife, she conceived, and bare a son, and he called his name Beriah, because it went evil with his house.
2 Chron 29:18
Quote:
Then they went in to Hezekiah the king, and said, We have cleansed all the house of the LORD, and the altar of burnt offering, with all the vessels thereof, and the shewbread table, with all the vessels thereof.
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  #49  
Old 03-09-2006, 02:15 PM
Elendil's Heir Elendil's Heir is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AskNott
Then it's safe to tell an angel, "Go f___ yourself?"
Well, maybe it's anatomically possible. But I wouldn't say it's safe.
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  #50  
Old 03-10-2006, 12:15 PM
Sampiro Sampiro is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tevildo
Euphemism

Most uses of "know" in the Bible are literal. Some are undoubtedly euphemistic. Some may be debatable, although I personally think it's obvious which side of the line each example falls.

Another Biblical euphemism for sex is "go in to". For five points - which of these is euphemistic?

1 Chron 7:23
2 Chron 29:18

Would you agree that in those instances the use of "go into" is clear, but in the case of "let us know them" and Sodom, it is less so? I don't argue that know/yadda is used ephemistically, but personally (especially in light of what G_d himself said the sin of Sodom was, I think that the literal meaning ("we want to know these strange looking men that a relative stranger has brought into our gated city [and thus potentially pose a major threat to our safety") may have more validity than "we want to have sex with these strange looking men that etc etc.".
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