Other points of view

Letters to a clergyman

Dear Rev. I. Takethebible-Literally

I am having real problems fulfilling the requirements laid down in parts of the Bible. I know you have studied these things extensively, so I am confident you can help. The points which confuse me are as follows:

1. Leviticus 25:44 states that I may buy slaves from the nations that are around us. A friend of mine claims that this applies to the Irish, but not the Scots. Can you clarify?

2. I would like to sell my daughter into slavery as it suggests in Exodus 21:7. In this day and age, what do you think would be a fair price for her?

3. I have a neighbour who insists on working on the Sabbath. Exodus 35:2 clearly states that he should be put to death. Who is morally obliged to kill him? Is it me, as he is my neighbour, or you, now that I have notified you of the situation?

4. I know from Leviticus 11:6-8 that touching the skin of a dead pig makes me unclean, but may I still play football if I wear gloves?

5. My uncle has a farm. He violates Leviticus 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? (Leviticus 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? (Leviticus. 20:14)

6. When I burn a bull as a sacrifice on the altar on my patio, I know it creates a pleasing odour for the Lord (Leviticus 1:9). The problem is my neighbours. They claim the odour is not pleasing to them. Should I smite them?

7. 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.

8. 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?

9. A friend of mine has pointed out that eating shellfish is an Abomination (Lev 11:10), but Leviticus also says that homosexuality is an Abomination. Are these 2 sins equally abominable, or is there a scale of Abomination by which I can compare them, as I must admit I am partial to the occasional cockle?

10. Leviticus 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 absolutely 20/20, or is there some wiggle room here? Would it be acceptable to hide my affliction by wearing contact lenses?

Thank you again for reminding us that God's word is eternal and unchanging.

The Word according to Gloria

The Bible has been translated into Polari. To give you a sample, here's Genesis Chapter 1

In the beginning Gloria created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was nanti form, and void; and munge was upon the eke of the deep. And the fairy of Gloria trolled upon the eke of the aquas. And Gloria cackled, Let there be sparkle: and there was sparkle. And Gloria vardad the sparkle, that it was bona.

Here's a bit of "Matilda" Chapter 9

And Josie knowing their thoughts cackled, Wherefore think ye nana in your thumping cheats? For whether is easier, to cackle, Thy kertervers be forgiven thee; or to cackle, Arise, and mince? But that ye may know that the homie chavvie of homie hath power on earth to forgive kertervers. Then saith she to the sick of the palsy, Arise, lell up thy bed, and troll unto thine lattie. And she arose, and trolled off to his lattie.

Thought for the day

The following exposition of religious truths is by courtesy of the Amsterdam Lesbian and Gay Information Service.

Taoism Shit happens

Buddhism If shit happens, it isn't really shit

Hinduism This shit has all happened before

Islam If shit happens, it is Allah's will

Catholicism Shit happens because you deserve it

Protestantism Let shit happen to someone else

Judaism Why does shit always happen to us?

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