Re: Lev. 18:18, 22 (LXX)

On Thu, 8 Sep 1994, Gregory Jordan (ENG) wrote:

> On Wed, 7 Sep 1994 Dvdmoore@aol.com wrote:
> > 	In an earlier post, I recommended a perusal of the Hebrew underlying
> > instances of the translation "wife."  I said then that you will find that
> > when 'ishshah has the meaning "wife," either the context clearly so
> > indicates, or the use of the article and/or some pronoun points to the
> > husband-wife relationship.  In the case of Lev. 18:18, the context is what
> > shows that GUNH (and its underlying Hebrew) is to be understood as "wife."
> >  The context does not so indicate in Lev. 18:22.  And with neither article
> > nor pronoun to show a husband-wife relationship in Lev. 18:22, GUNH (and its
> > underlying Hebrew) should be most naturally understood in a general sense
> > (i.e. "woman").  Make no mistake, the semantic range of both GUNH and
> > 'ishshah include both "wife" and "woman."  The coice between these two
> > meanings is a matter of exegesis and depends entirely the kinds of indicators
> > I have mentioned.
> I *have* perused the Hebrew use of issha, and I can only conclude that 
> your criteria for an acceptable context are not the same as mine.  I 
> assume you support the traditional interpretation, something like "you 
> will not lie with a man as with a woman" and interpreted as being a 
> general prohibition against homosexual behavior.  Well, if this is so 
> [assuming, for the sake of argument, what I reject], then you must see 
> that homosexual behavior, illicit, is being contrasted to relations with 
> a woman, licit.  Now you have insisted that issha/gune is *not* to be 
> interpreted as wife, so you are saying that homosexuality is being shown 
> to be evil as CONTRASTED with adultery or fornication between a man and a 
> woman, that is, sex between a man and a woman who, as you say, are NOT 
> married.  Do you see the problem with that?

If I am following Greg's argument correctly, then he obviously sees a 
problem I don't.  Homosexuality in this passage is contrasted with 
relations with a woman.  The issue is not whether they are 
married; that issue is taken up elsewhere in the text.  The issue is 
simply one of the sex of the partner.  It seems perfectly logical (to me, 
anyway) that the writer would prohibit all same-sex relations, and then 
be more specific in dealing with licit and illicit opposite-sex relations.

John L. Moody			Palm Beach Atlantic College

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