EJ&T: Sex
Every Jot and Tittle: All the commandments in the Bible

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Introduction

  1. Commandments about the Commandments
  2. Commandments about God
  3. Other Gods and Beliefs
  4. Holy Things and Holy Days
  5. Priests, Levites, Nazarites, and Prophets
  6. Business, Law, and Government
  7. Slavery, War, and Genocide
  8. Crime and Punishment
  9. Sex, Homosexuality, and Circumcision
  10. Marriage, Divorce, Children, and Human Life
  11. Women
  12. Animals, Agriculture, and the Environment
  13. Animal Sacrifice
  14. Health, Diet, Alcohol, Clothing, and Personal Hygiene
  15. Jesus's Commandments
  16. Just for Christians
  17. Good Rules
  18. Fortune Cookie Commandments

Maimonides's List
-248 Positive Mitzvot
-365 Negative Mitvot

List of all the commandments in the order of their occurrence in the Bible

SAB Book

Drunk With Blood

Strange Flesh: The Bible and Homosexuality

SAB iPhone App

Every Jot and Tittle: All the commandments in the Bible



Chapter 9: Sex, Homosexuality, and Circumcision

The Bible's first commandment is to have sex and make babies. Just don't try to separate the two, as Onan did when he "spilled his seed on the ground." (God killed him for it.)

Semen, it seems, is very dirty to God. Whenever it comes out of a man it makes him unclean. Any clothing or skin that it touches is also unclean, as is any woman that may have been involved. The Bible even says that there should be a special place for men to go to cleanse themselves after they have wet dreams.

There are nine commandments about men with "running issues" out of their flesh. Such a man is unlcean, even when his issue stops. Any bed, chair, or saddle that he used is also unclean. Whoever touches the unclean bed becomes unclean. Whoever sits on anything that he sat on is unclean. And, of course, if you touch his flesh, or he touches you before he has washed his hands, or he spits on you, you become unclean. Any clay pots that he has touched must be broken, and any wooden bowls must be washed. When he finally cleansed of his issue, he must wait seven days and then wash his clothes and take a bath. On the eighth day he must bring two doves or two pigeons to a priest who will kill one for a sin offering and one for a burnt offering.

There are nineteen commandments about people whose nakedness you should not uncover, and another four about people (and animals) that you shouldn't lie carnally with. Commandments about lust and coveting are also covered, along with a few about homosexuality.

Male circumcision is God's "everlasting covenant." Even Jesus was circumcised when he was eight days old (Luke 2:21). But the Bible is inconsistent on the topic, with a clear difference between the Old and New Testaments. Three commandments in the Hebrew Scriptures require male circumcision; three in the New Testament imply that it is no longer necessary.


Procreation
Semen
Running issues from a man's flesh
Uncovering the nakedness of relatives and acquaintances
People you shouldn't have sex with
Lust and Coveting
Homosexuality
Circumcision

Procreation

(Numbered P and N links are to the positive and negative commandments on Maimonides's list.)

  1. Be fruitful and multiply.
  2. Be fruitful, and multiply. Genesis 1:28, 9:1, 9:7, 35:11
    This command is given repeatedly by God, and although it may have been meant only for the particular people that God was talking to at the time (Adam and Eve, Noah and his shipmates, and Jacob), many Bible believers consider it a direct command to all humankind. So, for the sake of completeness, I'll include it on the list.
    Maimonides
    P212: Be fruitful and multiply - Gen 1:28

    Semen

  3. Don't spill your seed on the ground.
  4. And Er, Judah's firstborn, was wicked in the sight of the Lord; and the Lord slew him. And Judah said unto Onan, Go in unto thy brother's wife, and marry her, and raise up seed to thy brother. And Onan knew that the seed should not be his; and it came to pass, when he went in unto his brother's wife, that he spilled it on the ground, lest that he should give seed to his brother. And the thing which he did displeased the Lord: wherefore he slew him also. Genesis 38:7-10

  5. Whenever a "man's seed of copulation go out from him," he must wash in water and be unclean until evening.
  6. And if any man's seed of copulation go out from him, then he shall wash all his flesh in water, and be unclean until the even. Leviticus 15:16
    Maimonides
    P105: Semen - Lev 15:16
    P109: Immersing in a ritual bath - Lev 15:16

  7. Any clothing or skin that has come into contact with semen must be washed in water. They are unclean until the evening.
  8. And every garment, and every skin, whereon is the seed of copulation, shall be washed with water, and be unclean until the even. Leviticus 15:17

  9. If a woman is with a man when his seed of copulation goes out from him, she must take a bath and be unclean until the evening.
  10. The woman also with whom man shall lie with seed of copulation, they shall both bathe themselves in water, and be unclean until the even. Leviticus 15:18

  11. If you have a wet dream, go to the special wet dream place and wash with water in the evening before returning to camp.
  12. If there be among you any man, that is not clean by reason of uncleanness that chanceth him by night, then shall he go abroad out of the camp, he shall not come within the camp: But it shall be, when evening cometh on, he shall wash himself with water: and when the sun is down, he shall come into the camp again. Thou shalt have a place also without the camp, whither thou shalt go forth abroad. Deuteronomy 23:10-12
    Maimonides
    N78: An unclean person may not enter the camp of Levites - Dt 23:11

    Running issues from a man's flesh

  13. A man with a running issue out of his flesh is unclean, whether it drips or not.
  14. And the LORD spake unto Moses and to Aaron, saying, Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, When any man hath a running issue out of his flesh, because of his issue he is unclean. And this shall be his uncleanness in his issue: whether his flesh run with his issue, or his flesh be stopped from his issue, it is his uncleanness. Leviticus 15:1-3
    Maimonides
    P104: The zav (abnormal seminal discharge from the penis) - Lev 15:2

  15. Whatever he touches is also unclean.
  16. Every bed, whereon he lieth that hath the issue, is unclean: and every thing, whereon he sitteth, shall be unclean. Leviticus 15:4

    And what saddle soever he rideth upon that hath the issue shall be unclean. Leviticus 15:9

  17. If you touch his bed, you must wash your clothes, take a bath, and be unclean until the evening.
  18. And whosoever toucheth his bed shall wash his clothes, and bathe himself in water, and be unclean until the even. Leviticus 15:5

  19. If you sit on anything upon which he sat, you must wash your clothes, take a bath, and be unclean until the evening.
  20. And he that sitteth on any thing whereon he sat that hath the issue shall wash his clothes, and bathe himself in water, and be unclean until the even. Leviticus 15:6

    And whosoever toucheth any thing that was under him shall be unclean until the even. Leviticus 15:10

  21. If you touch his flesh, you must wash your clothes, take a bath, and be unclean until the evening.
  22. And he that toucheth the flesh of him that hath the issue shall wash his clothes, and bathe himself in water, and be unclean until the even. Leviticus 15:7

  23. If he spits on you, then you must wash your clothes, take a bath, and be unclean until the evening.
  24. And if he that hath the issue spit upon him that is clean; then he shall wash his clothes, and bathe himself in water, and be unclean until the even. Leviticus 15:8

  25. If he touches you and he hasn't washed his hands, then you must wash your clothes, take a bath, and be unclean until the evening.
  26. And whomsoever he toucheth that hath the issue, and hath not rinsed his hands in water, he shall wash his clothes, and bathe himself in water, and be unclean until the even. Leviticus 15:11

  27. If he touches a clay pot, it must be broken. If he touches a wood pot, it must be washed.
  28. And the vessel of earth, that he toucheth which hath the issue, shall be broken: and every vessel of wood shall be rinsed in water. Leviticus 15:12

  29. When the man with the running issue out of his flesh is cleansed of his issue, he must wait seven days and then wash his clothes and take a bath.
  30. On the eighth day he must bring two doves or two pigeons to a priest who will kill one for a sin offering and one for a burnt offering. (See Animal Sacrifices for the details.)
    And when he that hath an issue is cleansed of his issue; then he shall number to himself seven days for his cleansing, and wash his clothes, and bathe his flesh in running water, and shall be clean. Leviticus 15:13

    People whose nakedness you must not uncover

  31. Don't uncover the nakedness of any of your near relatives.
  32. None of you shall approach to any that is near of kin to him, to uncover their nakedness: I am the LORD. Leviticus 18:6
    Maimonides
    N353: Don't be intimate with a kinswoman - Lev 18:6
    Punishment: Whipping

  33. Don't uncover the nakedness of your father.
  34. The nakedness of thy father ... shalt thou not uncover. Leviticus 18:7a
    Maimonides
    N351: A man may not lie carnally with his father - Lev 18:7
    Punishment: Death by stoning

  35. Don't uncover the nakedness of your mother.
  36. The nakedness of thy mother, shalt thou not uncover: she is thy mother; thou shalt not uncover her nakedness. Leviticus 18:7b
    Maimonides
    N330: Don't have intercourse with your mother - Lev 18:7
    Punishment: Death

  37. Don't uncover the nakedness of your father's wife.
  38. (The nakedness of your father's wife is your father's nakedness. It would be discovering your father's skirt.)
    The nakedness of thy father's wife shalt thou not uncover: it is thy father's nakedness. Leviticus 18:8

    A man shall not take his father's wife, nor discover his father's skirt. Deuteronomy 22:30

    Cursed be he that lieth with his father's wife; because he uncovereth his father's skirt. And all the people shall say, Amen. Deuteronomy 27:20

    Maimonides
    N331: Don't have intercourse with your father's wife - Lev 18:8
    Punishment: Death

  39. Don't uncover the nakedness of your sister, the daughter of your father.
  40. (Or you both will be cut off.)
    The nakedness of thy sister, the daughter of thy father ... whether she be born at home, or born abroad, even their nakedness thou shalt not uncover. Leviticus 18:9a

    Cursed be he that lieth with his sister, the daughter of his father.... And all the people shall say, Amen. Deuteronomy 27:22

    Maimonides
    N332: Don't have intercourse with your sister - Lev 18:9
    Punishment: Death

  41. Don't uncover the nakedness of your sister, the daughter of your mother.
  42. The nakedness of thy sister, the ... daughter of thy mother, whether she be born at home, or born abroad, even their nakedness thou shalt not uncover. Leviticus 18:9b

    Cursed be he that lieth with his sister ... the daughter of his mother. And all the people shall say, Amen. Deuteronomy 27:22

    Maimonides
    N332: Don't have intercourse with your sister - Lev 18:9
    Punishment: Death

  43. Don't uncover the nakedness of your granddaughter, the daughter of your son.
  44. (That would be uncovering your own nakedness.)
    The nakedness of thy son's daughter ... thou shalt not uncover: for [her nakedness] is thine own nakedness. Leviticus 18:10a
    Maimonides
    N334: Don't have intercourse with your son's daughter

  45. Don't uncover the nakedness of your granddaughter, the daughter of your daughter.
  46. (That would be uncovering your own nakedness.)
    The nakedness of ... thy daughter's daughter thous shalt not uncover: [her nakedness] is thine own nakedness. Leviticus 18:10b
    Maimonides
    N335: Don't have intercourse with your daughter's daughter - Lev 18:10

  47. Don't uncover the nakedness of your father's wife's daughter.
  48. The nakedness of thy father's wife's daughter, begotten of thy father, she is thy sister, thou shalt not uncover her nakedness. Leviticus 18:11
    Maimonides
    N333: Don't have intercourse with the daughter of your father's wife if she be your sister - Lev 18:11
    Punishment: Death

  49. Don't uncover the nakendess of your father's sister.
  50. Thou shalt not uncover the nakedness of thy father's sister: she is thy father's near kinswoman. Leviticus 18:12

    And thou shalt not uncover the nakedness of ... thy father's sister: for he uncovereth his near kin: they shall bear their iniquity. Leviticus 20:19

    Maimonides
    N340: Don't have intercourse with your father's sister - Lev 18:12
    Punishment: Death

  51. Don't uncover the nakedness of your mother's sister.
  52. Thou shalt not uncover the nakedness of thy mother's sister: for she is thy mother's near kinswoman. Leviticus 18:13

    And thou shalt not uncover the nakedness of thy mother's sister ... for he uncovereth his near kin: they shall bear their iniquity. Leviticus 20:20

    Maimonides
    N341: Don't have intercourse with your mother's sister - Lev 18:13
    Punishment: Death

  53. Don't uncover the nakedness of your father's brother.
  54. Thou shalt not uncover the nakedness of thy father's brother. Leviticus 18:14a
    Maimonides
    N352: A man may not lie carnally with his father's brother - Lev 18:14
    Punishment: Death

  55. Don't uncover the nakedness of your father's brother's wife.
  56. Thou shalt not approach to his [your father's brother's] wife: she is thine aunt. Leviticus 18:14b
    Maimonides
    N342: Don't have intercourse with the wife of your father's brother - Lev 18:14
    Punishment: Death

  57. Don't uncover the nakedness of your son's wife.
  58. Thou shalt not uncover the nakedness of thy daughter in law: she is thy son's wife; thou shalt not uncover her nakedness. Leviticus 18:15
    Maimonides
    N343: Don't have intercourse with your son's wife - Lev 18:15
    Punishment: Death by stoning

  59. Don't uncover the nakedness of your brother's wife.
  60. Thou shalt not uncover the nakedness of thy brother's wife: it is thy brother's nakedness. Leviticus 18:16
    Maimonides
    N344: Don't have intercourse with your brother's wife - Lev 18:16
    Punishment: Death

  61. Don't uncover the nakedness of a woman and her daughter.
  62. (Or all three of you will be burned to death.)
    Thou shalt not uncover the nakedness of a woman and her daughter ... to uncover her nakedness; for they are her near kinswomen: it is wickedness. Leviticus 18:17a
    Maimonides
    N337: Don't have intercourse with a woman and her daughter - Lev 18:17
    Punishment: Death by burning

  63. Don't uncover the nakedness of a woman and her granddaughter (her son's daughter).
  64. Thou shalt not uncover the nakedness of a woman and ... her son's daughter ... for they are her near kinswomen: it is wickedness. Leviticus 18:17b
    Maimonides
    N338: Don't have intercourse with a woman and her son's daughter - Lev 18:17
    Punishment: Death by burning

  65. Don't uncover the nakedness of a woman and her granddaughter (her daughter's daughter).
  66. Thou shalt not uncover the nakedness of a woman and ... her daughter's daughter, to uncover her nakedness; for they are her near kinswomen: it is wickedness. Leviticus 18:17c
    Maimonides
    N339: Don't have intercourse with a woman and her daughter's daughter - Lev 18:17
    Punishment: Death by burning

    People and things you shouldn't have sex with

  67. Don't have sex with your neighbor's wife.
  68. Thou shalt not lie carnally with thy neighbour's wife, to defile thyself with her. Leviticus 18:20
    Maimonides
    N347: Don't have intercourse with another man's wife - Ex 20:13, Lev 18:20
    Punishment: Death by stoning, burning, or strangling -- depending on the circumstances

  69. Don't have sex with animals.
  70. (It is confusion.)
    Neither shalt thou lie with any beast to defile thyself therewith: neither shall any woman stand before a beast to lie down thereto: it is confusion. Leviticus 18:23

    Cursed be he that lieth with any manner of beast. And all the people shall say, Amen. Deuteronomy 27:21

    Maimonides
    N348: Men may not lie with beasts - Lev 18:23
    N349: Women may not lie with beasts - Lev 18:23
    Punishment: Death by stoning

  71. If a man has sex with another man's concubine, scourge the concubine and kill a goat for the man's trespass offering.
  72. Whosoever lieth carnally with a woman, that is a bondmaid, betrothed to an husband, and not at all redeemed, nor freedom given her; she shall be scourged; they shall not be put to death, because she was not free. And he shall bring his trespass offering unto the LORD, unto the door of the tabernacle of the congregation, even a ram for a trespass offering. And the priest shall make an atonement for him with the ram of the trespass offering before the LORD for his sin which he hath done: and the sin which he hath done shall be forgiven him. Leviticus 19:20-22

  73. Don't have sex with your uncle's wife.
  74. (If you do, you have uncovered your uncle's nakedness and you and the concubine will die childless.)
    If a man shall lie with his uncle's wife, he hath uncovered his uncle's nakedness: they shall bear their sin; they shall die childless. Leviticus 20:20

    Fornication, Lust, and Coveting

  75. Don't covet your neighbor's wife.
  76. Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's wife. Exodus 20:17

    Neither shalt thou desire thy neighbour's wife. Deuteronomy 5:21

  77. Don't fornicate.
  78. Abstain ... from fornication. Acts 15:20

    It seemed good to the Holy Ghost, and to us ... that ye abstain ... from fornication. Acts 15:29-30

    As touching the Gentiles which believe, we have written and concluded that they observe no such thing, save only that they keep themselves from ... fornication. Acts 21:25

    Flee fornication. 1 Corinthians 1:18

    Neither let us commit fornication, as some of them committed, and fell in one day three and twenty thousand. 1 Corinthians 10:8

    But fornication ... let it not be once named among you. Ephesians 5:3

    Fornication ... For which things' sake the wrath of God cometh on the children of disobedience. Colossians 3:5-6

    For ye know what commandments we gave you by the Lord Jesus. For this is the will of God, even your sanctification, that ye should abstain from fornication. 1 Thessalonians 4:2-3

  79. Don't walk in chambering and wantonness.
  80. Let us walk ... not in chambering and wantonness. Romans 13:13

  81. Don't try to satisfy your lusts.
  82. Make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof. Romans 13:14

    Flee also youthful lusts. 2 Timothy 2:22

    Abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul. 1 Peter 2:11

  83. Don't have evil concupiscence.
  84. ...evil concupiscence ... For which things' sake the wrath of God cometh on the children of disobedience. Colossians 3:5-6

  85. Know how to possess your vessel in sanctification and honor.
  86. For ye know what commandments we gave you by the Lord Jesus. For this is the will of God, even your sanctification ... That every one of you should know how to possess his vessel in sanctification and honour; Not in the lust of concupiscence, even as the Gentiles which know not God. 1 Thessalonians 4:2-5

    Homosexuality

  87. If you are a man, don't have sex with another man. It is abomination.
  88. (Or you will be killed.)
    Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination. Leviticus 18:22
    Maimonides
    N350: A male may not lie carnally with a male - Lev 18:22
    Punishment: Death by stoning

  89. Don't allow any sodomites to live in your community.
  90. There shall be no ... sodomite of the sons of Israel. Deuteronomy 23:17

  91. Don't bring the price of a dog into the house of the Lord.
  92. (Some interpret "dog" as male homosexual.)
    Thou shalt not bring the hire of a whore, or the price of a dog, into the house of the LORD thy God for any vow: for even both these are abomination unto the LORD thy God. Deuteronomy 23:18
    Maimonides
    N100: Don't offer on the altar the hire of a harlot or the price of a dog" - Dt 23:19
    N355: Don't have intercourse without marriage - Dt 23:18
    (Maimonides interpreted Dt 23:18 as forbidding pre-marital sex.)
    Punishment: Whipping

    Circumcision

  93. Circumcise the flesh of your foreskin.
  94. This is my covenant, which ye shall keep, between me and you and thy seed after thee; Every man child among you shall be circumcised. Genesis 17:10

    Ye shall circumcise the flesh of your foreskin. Genesis 17:11

    My covenant shall be in your flesh for an everlasting covenant. Genesis 17:13

    Maimonides
    P215: The law of circumcison - Gen 17:10

  95. Circumcise boys eight days after their birth.
  96. He that is eight days old shall be circumcised among you, every man child in your generations. Genesis 17:12

    And in the eighth day the flesh of his foreskin shall be circumcised. Leviticus 12:3

    Maimonides
    P215: The law of circumcision - Gen 17:10
    Penalty for failing to be circumcised: Death
    (One of two positve commandments with the death penalty - the other is failing to kill the paschal lamb P55.)

  97. Circumcise your male slaves.
  98. He that is bought with thy money, must needs be circumcised. Genesis 17:13

  99. If you are circumcised, don't become uncircumcised.
  100. (It's pretty hard to undo, isn't it?)
    Is any man called being circumcised? let him not become uncircumcised. 1 Corinthians 7:18

  101. If you are uncircumcised, don't get circumcised.
  102. (If you do, you'll have to obey the law.)
    Is any called in uncircumcision? let him not be circumcised. 1 Corinthians 7:18

    If ye be circumcised, Christ shall profit you nothing. For I testify again to every man that is circumcised, that he is a debtor to do the whole law. Christ is become of no effect unto you. Galatians 5:2-4

  103. Beware of circumcision.
  104. Beware of the concision [circumcision]. Philiippians 3:2

See Also:

Crime and Punishement
Cut off any uncircumcised male.
If a man has sex with another man, they have committed an abomination. Kill them both.

Women
Don't approach a menstruating woman to uncover her nakedness.
If a man has sex with a menstruating woman, he is unclean for seven days.


Chapter 10: Marriage, Divorce, Children, Human Life