Three religious scholars (Hector Avalos, Robert R. Cargill and Kenneth Atkinson) got together and discovered something wonderful.
When haters tell us that the Bible says marriage is for a man and woman, that's a lie. Well, I knew that, but anyway these scholars wrote an editorial that points out how the Bible doesn't define marriage between a man and a woman.
The joint editorial was written by Hector Avalos, Robert R. Cargill and Kenneth Atkinson and published in the Des Moines Register on Sunday. The men teach at Iowa State University, University of Iowa and University of Northern Iowa, respectively.
"The debate about marriage equality often centers, however discretely, on an appeal to the Bible," the authors wrote. "Unfortunately, such appeals often reflect a lack of biblical literacy on the part of those who use that complex collection of texts as an authority to enact modern social policy."
The Bible's definition of marriage can be confusing and contradictory, noted the scholars. They stated in their column that a primary example of this is the religious book's stance on polygamy, a practice that was embraced by prominent biblical figures Abraham and David. Furthermore, Avalos, Cargill and Atkinson point out that various Bible passages mention not only traditional monogamy, but also self-induced castration and celibacy, as well as the practice of wedding rape victims to their rapists.
This info will be met with plenty of push back, but it will start a fascinating conversation.