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Rebuttal to Sam Shamoun’s article

A Series of Answers to Common Questions

By

Sami Zaatari

 

http://answering-islam.org/Shamoun/ot_and_rape.htm

By the end of this article you will see for your self of what a bad job Shamoun has done in this article. By far this is the worst article I have read, and the worst explanation or response he has ever given, and the worst article I have ever read by a Christian. Rather than solve the problem, Shamoun causes yet another problem as you will see by the end of the article.

 

He wrote:

Some Muslims claim that the following passage from the Holy Bible condones rape:

 

"If a man happens to meet a virgin who is not pledged to be married and rapes her and they are discovered, he shall pay the girl's father fifty shekels of silver. He must marry the girl, for he has violated her. He can never divorce her as long as he lives." Deuteronomy 22:28-29 NIV

 

At first glance this passage does seem to condone rape. That is, until one takes a careful look at the context as well as the original languages. We must remember that the Holy Bible was not written in English. The OT was written in Hebrew, with parts of it written in Aramaic. The NT was written in Koine or common Greek. This means that if we want to know whether an English translation has faithfully and accurately translated the inspired author's intended meaning we must turn to the original language of the sacred text. Once this is done, it will become quite apparent that the Holy Bible does not sanction rape at all.

In the first place, the word which the NIV translates as rape comes from two Hebrew words, taphas and shakab. Here are the meanings listed by the Brown-Driver-Briggs Hebrew Lexicon in reference to these two words:

taphas -

# 08610
1) to catch, handle, lay hold, take hold of, seize, wield

a) (Qal)

1) to lay hold of, seize, arrest, catch
2) to grasp (in order to) wield, wield, use skilfully

b) (Niphal) to be seized, be arrested, be caught, be taken, captured
c) (Piel) to catch, grasp (with the hands)


AV - take 27, taken 12, handle 8, hold 8, catch 4, surprised 2, misc 4; 65
(Source: Blue Letter Bible <http://www.blueletterbible.org/>)

 

Here is one example of how this word is used:

 

"The priests did not ask, ‘Where is the LORD?’ Those who deal (taphas) with the law did not know me; the leaders rebelled against me. The prophets prophesied by Baal, following worthless idols." Jeremiah 2:8


shakab -

# 07901
1) to lie down

a) (Qal)

1) to lie, lie down, lie on
2) to lodge
3) to lie (of sexual relations)
4) to lie down (in death)
5) to rest, relax (fig)

b) (Niphal) to be lain with (sexually)
c) (Pual) to be lain with (sexually)
d) (Hiphil) to make to lie down
e) (Hophal) to be laid


AV - lie 106, sleep 48, lie down 43, rest 3, lien 2, misc 10; 212
(Source: Blue Letter Bible http://www.blueletterbible.org/)

 

 

My Response:

 

Thank you for the vocabulary lesson.

 

He wrote:

As Brown-Driver-Briggs demonstrates, the word can be used in relation to sexual intercourse as well as for other things. The following examples help demonstrate that shakab does not necessarily imply a forced sexual act:

 

"And the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, ‘Speak to the children of Israel, and say to them: ‘If any man's wife goes astray and behaves unfaithfully toward him, and a man lies (shakab) with her carnally, and it is hidden from the eyes of her husband, and it is concealed that she has defiled herself, and there was no witness against her, nor was she caught-" Numbers 5:11-13 NKJV

 

Here, the word shakab refers to a voluntary sexual act between two consenting parties, in this case to a woman who voluntarily chooses to commit adultery. It is clear that the woman in question wasn't forced into having sex. Again:

 

"If a man lies with a woman so that there is a seminal emission, they shall both bathe in water and be unclean until evening." Leviticus 15:18

 

My Response:

That is all nice. The damage is yet to come.

 

 

He wrote:

These examples clearly demonstrate that these terms do not in and of themselves necessarily imply that rape is in view. This is reflected in the way Deuteronomy 22 has been translated by the following translations:

If a man find a damsel that is a virgin, which is not betrothed, and lay hold on her, and lie with her, and they be found; KJV

If a man find a damsel that is a virgin, who is not espoused, and taking her, lie with her, and the matter come to judgment: DOUAY-RHEIMS

If a man shall find a damsel [that is] a virgin, who is not betrothed, and lay hold on her, and lie with her, and they be found; WEBSTER BIBLE

If a man find a lady who is a virgin, who is not pledged to be married, and lay hold on her, and lie with her, and they be found; WORLD ENGLISH BIBLE

When a man findeth a damsel, a virgin who is not betrothed, and hath caught her, and lain with her, and they have been found, YLT

When a man findeth a damsel that is a virgin who is not betrothed, and layeth hold of her and lieth with her, and they are found, ROTHERHAM

If a man find a damsel that is a virgin, that is not betrothed, and lay hold on her, and lie with her, and they be found; JPS 1917 OT

"If a man find a damsel who is a virgin who is not betrothed, and lay hold on her and lie with her, and they be found, THIRD MILLENNIUM

If a man find a damsel, a virgin, who is not betrothed, and lay hold on her, and lie with her, and they be found, DARBY

If a man find a damsel that is a virgin, that is not betrothed, and lay hold on her, and lie with her, and they be found; AMV

If a man meets a virgin who is not betrothed, and seizes her and lies with her, and they are found, RSV

If a man meets a virgin who is not engaged, and seizes her and lies with her, and they are caught in the act, NRSV

If a man finds a girl who is a virgin, who is not engaged, and seizes her and lies with her and they are discovered, NASB

If a man meets a virgin who is not betrothed, and seizes her and lies with her, and they are found, ESV

If a man finds a girl who is a virgin, who is not betrothed, and he seizes her and lies with her and they are found, AMPLIFIED

Suppose a woman isn't engaged to be married, and a man talks her into sleeping with him. If they are caught, CEV

 

My Response:

Now every single translation he has shown, except the last one show that the verse does in fact imply rape. Let us quote:

If a man find a damsel that is a virgin, which is not betrothed, and lay hold on her, and lie with her, and they be found; KJV

And lay hold on her. Now tell me how does he lay hold on her? Does he do it softy and gently? Of course not, this verse does show rape. LAY HOLD ON HER, the verse does not show her being okay with it, when some one comes and lay holds on you. That is a forceful action taking place, not a simple normal common thing which does not involve force or aggression. Definitely in the context it shows lay hold on her in a forceful manner. A man finding a VIRGIN WHO IS A LADY and LAYS HOLD ON HER and then LIES with her. The text and does indeed show forceful action.

If a man find a damsel that is a virgin, who is not espoused, and taking her, lie with her, and the matter come to judgment: DOUAY-RHEIMS

If a man shall find a damsel [that is] a virgin, who is not betrothed, and lay hold on her, and lie with her, and they be found; WEBSTER BIBLE

If a man find a lady who is a virgin, who is not pledged to be married, and lay hold on her, and lie with her, and they be found; WORLD ENGLISH BIBLE

This is the same thing, LAY HOLD ON HER.

When a man findeth a damsel, a virgin who is not betrothed, and hath caught her, and lain with her, and they have been found, YLT

This verse explicitly shows rape and forceful action by the man. He CATCHES her, CAUGHT her, and then lays with her. That is definitely rape, a man catching or caught a woman and then having sex with her. The text shows rape.

When a man findeth a damsel that is a virgin who is not betrothed, and layeth hold of her and lieth with her, and they are found, ROTHERHAM

If a man find a damsel that is a virgin, that is not betrothed, and lay hold on her, and lie with her, and they be found; JPS 1917 OT

"If a man find a damsel who is a virgin who is not betrothed, and lay hold on her and lie with her, and they be found, THIRD MILLENNIUM

If a man find a damsel, a virgin, who is not betrothed, and lay hold on her, and lie with her, and they be found, DARBY

If a man find a damsel that is a virgin, that is not betrothed, and lay hold on her, and lie with her, and they be found; AMV

This is the same as the KJB and the other Bible's which say lay hold on her, the text shows rape.

If a man meets a virgin who is not betrothed, and seizes her and lies with her, and they are found, RSV

If a man meets a virgin who is not engaged, and seizes her and lies with her, and they are caught in the act, NRSV

If a man finds a girl who is a virgin, who is not engaged, and seizes her and lies with her and they are discovered, NASB

If a man meets a virgin who is not betrothed, and seizes her and lies with her, and they are found, ESV

If a man finds a girl who is a virgin, who is not betrothed, and he seizes her and lies with her and they are found, AMPLIFIED

This translation also shows rape taking place. A man SEIZING a woman, what does that mean? That is definitely rape, a man seizing a women and then laying with her without a doubt is rape, or by seize Christians would like us to think it means just a man carrying her and both of them laughing and having a good time. The translations are for all to see, the text shows rape, there is no way around it. So thank you for all the translations, they still show rape. The damage has yet to be done.

 

He wrote:

Now someone may want to argue that the preceding examples do not combine the two words together as is the case with Deuteronomy 22. Hence, the use of the word taphas in conjunction with shakab in Deuteronomy implies that the sexual act was forced upon the maiden without her consent. A careful reading of both the passage itself, as well as its surrounding context, dispels such a notion. We quote the passage again, yet this time adding the surrounding context for further clarification:

 

"But if a man finds a betrothed young woman in the countryside, and the man forces (chazaq) her and lies with her, then only the man who lay with her shall die. But you shall do nothing to the young woman; there is in the young woman no sin deserving of death, for just as when a man rises against his neighbor and kills him, even so is this matter. For he found her in the countryside, and the betrothed young woman CRIED OUT, but there was no one to save her. If a man finds a young woman who is a virgin, who is not betrothed, and he seizes her and lies with her, and THEY ARE found out, then the man who lay with her shall give to the young woman's father fifty shekels of silver, and she shall be his wife because he has humbled her; he shall not be permitted to divorce her all his days." Deuteronomy 22:25-29 NKJV

 

Although vv. 25-27 refers to a woman that is betrothed, the point is still clear. By screaming, the woman indicates that she is being forced to have sex without her consent. Hence, when the woman does not scream this indicates that she willfully chose to engage in the sexual act with the man. This is further seen from vv. 28-29 where both the man and the woman are held accountable, i.e. "and THEY ARE found out." This is unlike the woman of vv. 25-27 who is said to be not guilty.

 

My Response:

Now let me just expose Shamoun very badly, not only has he failed to show what he is saying is true as I will show. He has also managed to insult every female rape victim out there. I will first expose him on how he insulted every female rape victim, quoting what Shamoun said:

By screaming, the woman indicates that she is being forced to have sex without her consent. Hence, when the woman does not scream this indicates that she willfully chose to engage in the sexual act with the man.

Shamoun has shown his ignorance and has shown how unintelligent he is. So tell me Shamoun, if a woman is being raped does she have to scream? Did it not occur to you that several rape victims were UN-ABLE to scream? That they were threatened with death if they would do so, and that even those who do try to scream and have screamed are forcefully silenced. The attacker often covers the victim’s mouth so they cannot SCREAM or make noise. They do this by either force with their hands, or they cover it with duct-tape or some other material. So Shamoun tell me, if a woman is being raped and does not scream because she is unable to does this mean she is enjoying it and willingly taking part in sexual intercourse? Shamoun has insulted every female rape victim by such a silly comment. But believe it or not, that is not the final damage he has done in his article, more to come. So that stupid point is soundly de-bunked, just because she does not scream does not mean she is not being raped, and if the Bible thinks like that, then the Bible is tremendously mistaken.


Secondly let me show that the context does in-fact show rape:

But if a man finds a betrothed young woman in the countryside, and the man forces (chazaq) her and lies with her, then only the man who lay with her shall die. But you shall do nothing to the young woman; there is in the young woman no sin deserving of death

The passages before verse 28 and 29 is talking about a YOUNG WOMEN who is not a VIRGIN

for just as when a man rises against his neighbor and kills him, even so is this matter. For he found her in the countryside, and the betrothed young woman CRIED OUT, but there was no one to save her.

The verses are talking about a YOUNG WOMEN, the next verses are talking about a young VIRGIN WOMEN, big difference!

 

If a man finds a young woman who is a virgin, who is not betrothed, and he seizes her and lies with her, and THEY ARE found out, then the man who lay with her shall give to the young woman's father fifty shekels of silver, and she shall be his wife because he has humbled her; he shall not be permitted to divorce her all his days.

So you can see it for yourself. There is a huge difference between the previous verses and verses we are dealing with, the verses before 28 and 29 are talking about a YOUNG WOMAN who is raped. The next passages are talking about a YOUNG VIRGIN WOMAN. So that is what Shamoun missed. So it is clear, in the case of a YOUNG WOMEN, the man who rapes her shall die. However so in the case of a young VIRGIN WOMEN, the man will have to marry her and pay her father 50 shekels of silver, so it is all clear for everyone.

Secondly note, in the case of the YOUNG WOMEN, it is when they are NOT FOUND and she is screaming, in the case of a YOUNG VIRGIN WOMAN it is when she is FOUND and NOT SCREAMING showing more difference to the way they deal with different types of rape. In the case of the young women when she is being raped and screaming and no one sees it happening, and they find out later, the man is put to death. In the case of the young virgin women, when she is being raped and is not screaming, meaning she is being forced in some physical way which is why she is not screaming, and some one finds them, then the rapist has to marry her. Now here is where Shamoun does the damage, Shamoun is trying to show that verses 28-29 show the virgin is willingly taking part in sexual intercourse, however so here is the problem.

Problem one is that then this would mean this is having sex without being married, a grave sin, secondly it shows the Bible condones sex before marriage because they were CAUGHT and nothing happened to them, but instead they got married to each other and got away with it! That is what Shamoun believes and is trying to show, so basically Shamoun's argument shows the Bible allows sex before marriage and the people who commit it don’t get in trouble for it but get away with it! Thank you for exposing your self, but however so, that lame argument does not work either, because Shamoun has not paid attention to the verses he posted. Here is proof that those verses are not about wilful sexual intercourse by both parties, take note:

But if a man finds a betrothed young woman in the countryside, and the man forces (chazaq) her and lies with her, then only the man who lay with her shall die. But you shall do nothing to the young woman; there is in the young woman no sin deserving of death, for just as when a man rises against his neighbor and kills him, even so is this matter. For he found her in the countryside, and the betrothed young woman CRIED OUT, but there was no one to save her

Now here we see the verses saying the women shall not die, but only the man, why? Because if you have sexual intercourse before marriage the penalty is death, however so the verses is clearing the women up of any wrong-doing because she did not WILLINGLY take part but was rather forced to, so there fore she shall not be put to death for such a sin. However so here is why Shamoun's cheap argument does not work, let us quote the next passages:

If a man finds a young woman who is a virgin, who is not betrothed, and he seizes her and lies with her, and THEY ARE found out, then the man who lay with her shall give to the young woman's father fifty shekels of silver, and she shall be his wife because he has humbled her; he shall not be permitted to divorce her all his days

AND THEY ARE FOUND OUT. Shamoun is trying to make an argument that both parties are willingly taking part in such an act, however the reason this does not work is because both of them were CAUGHT IN THE ACT, therefore if that is the case then BOTH OF THEM WOULD BE PUT TO DEATH for such a grave sin. However so, why weren’t they put to death if they were both taking part in sexual intercourse in which they BOTH agreed to? The preceding verses(26-27) show that the young lady should not be killed for such a crime because she is innocent and did not commit no sin in taking part in sexual intercourse, meaning she did not wilfully have sex but was forced, so therefore she was not killed meaning that if she DID TAKE PART IN SEX ON HER OWN ACCORD then she would have indeed been killed. Shamoun is saying verse 28 is showing the women was willingly taking part in the act, then there fore she should have been killed along with the man for taking part in the sin! However they were not killed! Meaning it was not a one night stand and that she was indeed raped! AMEEN, the proof is there for all to see!

So not only does Shamoun cheap argument fail very badly, we see that the rape victim has to marry the rapist if she happens to be a VIRGIN. If the victim is not a virgin then the rapist gets killed! What absurd laws, the virgin has to marry the rapist, while the non virgin does not, very bad laws indeed. So Shamoun not only showed he believes the Bible allows sexual intercourse before marriage which it does not as I showed from the text. He COMPLETLY failed to show the OT does not allow the rapist to get away with it, very nice work indeed by Shamoun. The facts are clear for all to see, the lovely context which Shamoun refers to is his ultimate downfall.

 

He wrote:

Also notice that in v. 25 a different word is used when signifying rape, namely chazaq. If the inspired author wanted to imply that the woman in vv. 28-29 was being raped, he could have used this same word chazaq; especially since this is the word he uses in the preceding verses to refer to an actual rape incident. The fact that he didn't use it should further caution us from reading rape into vv. 28-29.

 

My Response:

The facts speak for themselves; all can see it for themselves. The text and context shows rape, I completely crushed you this time.

 

He wrote:

Also notice that in v. 25 a different word is used when signifying rape, namely chazaq. If the inspired author wanted to imply that the woman in vv. 28-29 was being raped, he could have used this same word chazaq; especially since this is the word he uses in the preceding verses to refer to an actual rape incident. The fact that he didn't use it should further caution us from reading rape into vv. 28-29.

This is supported by other OT passages. In the places where rape is mentioned none of them use the word taphas. The words chazaq and anah are used:

 

"Now Dinah the daughter of Leah, whom she had borne to Jacob, went out to see the women of the land. And when Shechem the son of Hamor the Hivite, the prince of the land, saw her, he seized (laqach) her and lay (shakab) with her and humiliated (anah) her. And his soul was drawn to Dinah the daughter of Jacob. He loved the young woman and spoke tenderly to her. So Shechem spoke to his father Hamor, saying, ‘Get me this girl for my wife.’ Now Jacob heard that he had defiled his daughter Dinah. But his sons were with his livestock in the field, so Jacob held his peace until they came. And Hamor the father of Shechem went out to Jacob to speak with him. The sons of Jacob had come in from the field as soon as they heard of it, and the men were indignant and very angry, because he had done an outrageous thing (n’balah) in Israel by lying with Jacob's daughter, for such a thing must not be done." Genesis 34:1-7 ESV

And:

"Then Amnon said to Tamar, ‘Bring the food into the chamber, that I may eat from your hand.’ And Tamar took the cakes she had made and brought them into the chamber to Amnon her brother. But when she brought them near him to eat, he took hold of her and said to her, ‘Come, lie with me, my sister.’ She answered him, ‘No, my brother, do not violate (anah) me, for such a thing is not done in Israel; do not do this outrageous thing (n’balah). As for me, where could I carry my shame? And as for you, you would be as one of the outrageous fools in Israel. Now therefore, please speak to the king, for he will not withhold me from you.’ But he would not listen to her, and being stronger (chazaq) than she, he violated (anah) her and lay (shakab) with her. Then Amnon hated her with very great hatred, so that the hatred with which he hated her was greater than the love with which he had loved her. And Amnon said to her, ‘Get up! Go!’ But she said to him, ‘No, my brother, for this wrong in sending me away is greater than the other that you did to me.’ But he would not listen to her. He called the young man who served him and said, "Put this woman out of my presence and bolt the door after her.’ Now she was wearing a long robe with sleeves, for thus were the virgin daughters of the king dressed. So his servant put her out and bolted the door after her. And Tamar put ashes on her head and tore the long robe that she wore. And she laid her hand on her head and went away, crying aloud as she went. And her brother Absalom said to her, ‘Has Amnon your brother been with you? Now hold your peace, my sister. He is your brother; do not take this to heart.’ So Tamar lived, a desolate woman, in her brother Absalom's house. When King David heard of all these things, he was very angry. But Absalom spoke to Amnon neither good nor bad, for Absalom hated Amnon, because he had violated (anah) his sister Tamar ... But Jonadab the son of Shimeah, David's brother, said, ‘Let not my lord suppose that they have killed all the young men the king's sons, for Amnon alone is dead. For by the command of Absalom this has been determined from the day he violated (anah) his sister Tamar.’" 2 Samuel 13:10-22, 32 ESV

 

Notice that neither passage uses the word taphas, providing additional support that this word in of itself doesn’t necessarily imply the use of force. It also demonstrates our point that if the inspired author had rape in view he could have simply used chazaq, or even laqach, since these are the very words he used elsewhere to indicate that a rape had occurred.

 

My Response:

Nothing of importance.

 

 

He wrote:

The final line of evidence demonstrating that Deuteronomy 22:28 does not condone rape comes from Exodus:

 

"If a man entices (pathah) a virgin who is not betrothed, and lies (shakab) with her, he shall surely pay the bride-price for her to be his wife. If her father utterly refuses to give her to him, he shall pay money according to the bride-price of virgins." Exodus 22:16-17

 

Note that in this passage the word pathah is used in place of taphas. Brown-Driver-Briggs Hebrew Lexicon defines pathah as:

# 06601
1) to be spacious, be open, be wide

a) (Qal) to be spacious or open or wide
b) (Hiphil) to make spacious, make open

2) to be simple, entice, deceive, persuade

a) (Qal)

1) to be open-minded, be simple, be naive
2) to be enticed, be deceived

b) (Niphal) to be deceived, be gullible
c) (Piel)

1) to persuade, seduce
2) to deceive

d) (Pual)

1) to be persuaded
2) to be deceived


AV - entice 10, deceive 8, persuade 4, flatter 2, allure 1, enlarge 1, silly one 1, silly 1; 28
(Source: Blue Letter Bible <http://www.blueletterbible.org/>)

 

As can be seen, the word can mean entice, persuade, deceive etc. The following passage uses the word in a slightly similar fashion to that of Exodus, namely how God will allure or draw Israel back to his love:

 

"‘Therefore I am now going to allure (pathath) her; I will lead her into the desert and speak tenderly to her. There I will give her back her vineyards, and will make the Valley of Achor a door of hope. There she will sing as in the days of her youth, as in the day she came up out of Egypt. In that day,’ declares the LORD, ‘you will call me "my husband"; you will no longer call me "my master." I will remove the names of the Baals from her lips; no longer will their names be invoked. In that day I will make a covenant for them with the beasts of the field and the birds of the air and the creatures that move along the ground. Bow and sword and battle I will abolish from the land, so that all may lie down in safety. I will betroth you to me forever; I will betroth you in righteousness and justice, in love and compassion. I will betroth you in faithfulness, and you will acknowledge the LORD.’" Hosea 2:14-20

 

It is clear from the context that Exodus is referring to a man persuading or enticing a woman into having sex. Hence, this passage lends support to the fact that the woman in Deuteronomy 22:28-29 consented to the sexual act, and wasn't forced into having sex. In other words, there was no rape involved between the man and the woman.

This concludes our exegesis of Deuteronomy 22:28-29. We prayerfully hope that by the grace of our risen Lord and eternal Savior Jesus Christ, this short paper will be of great help to those Christians who have been confronted by Muslims with the accusation that the Holy Bible condones the raping of women. Hopefully, both Christians and Muslims will see that the Holy Bible nowhere condones rape.

In the service of our great and eternal triune God forever and ever. Amen. Come Lord Jesus, come. We will always love you, risen Lord of eternal Glory.

 

My Response:

So in fact you have shown that your Bible allows for sex before marriage. Although Shamoun's cheap argument of the situation being a one night stand is a complete joke which I literally crushed, it is still bad enough that Shamoun believes in it meaning he believes his Bible allows for sex before marriage. However so the fact is that the Bible has differing laws on rape, if the victim is not a virgin, the rapist gets killed. If the victim is a virgin then she has to marry the rapist.

Keep doing such services for your triune God, it only helps us Muslims prove our case against the bible better. Well that is the end of the rebuttal, Shamoun has hurt himself bad.

In service of ALLAH the true God, forever we serve you, and indeed Jesus the son of Mary was just a messenger.

AMEEN

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rebuttals, and exposing the lies of the Answering Islam team section.

Rebuttals to Sam Shamoun's Articles section.

Sami Zaatari's Rebuttals section.


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