Cruelty and Violence
Science and History
- Caleb offers to give his daughter to anyone who conquers the city of Debir. Caleb's nephew wins the contest and
is given his cousin for a prize. 1:12-13
- "Have they not divided the prey; to every man a damsel or two?" 5:30
- Gideon had 70 sons (no one knows how many daughters) "for he had many
- After being hit in the head with a millstone thrown by a woman, a soldier orders his armor bearer to kill him
so that no one would say that a woman had killed him. 9:53-54
- When "the spirit of the Lord" comes upon Jephthah, he makes a deal with God: If God will help him kill the
Ammonites, then he (Jephthah) will offer to God as a burnt offering whatever comes out of his house to greet him.
God keeps his end of the deal by providing Jephthah with "a very great slaughter." But when Jephthah returns, his
nameless daughter comes out to greet him (who'd he expect, his wife?). Well, a deal's a deal, so he delivers her to
God as a burnt offering -- after letting her spend a couple of months going up and down on the mountains bewailing
her virginity. 11:29-39
- Manoah's nameless wife, like so many biblical women, is barren. But an angel fixes that, and Samson is
born. 13:2-3, 6, 9
- "Samson ... saw a woman ... of the daughters of the Philistines ... And Samson said unto his father ...
Get her for me; for she pleaseth me well." 14:1-3
- After ripping up the lion, Samson went to visit the Philistine woman that he fell in lust with earlier. "And she pleased Samson well."
- "If ye had not plowed with my heifer"
Samson called his wife a heifer and accuses the Philistines of having sex with her.
- "But Samson's wife was given to his companion, whom he had used as his friend." 14:20
- Samson's father-in-law gave Samson's wife away to a friend, since he thought Samson "hated" her. He suggests
that Samson take his younger daughter instead, saying the younger one's prettier anyway. 15:2
- After taking in a traveling Levite, the host offers his virgin daughter and his guest's concubine to a mob of
perverts (who want to have sex with his guest). The mob refuses the daughter, but accepts the concubine and they
"abuse her all night." The next morning she crawls back to the doorstep and dies. The Levite puts her dead body on an
ass and takes her home. Then he chops her body up into twelve pieces and sends them to each of the twelve tribes of
- After the Israelites heard the Levite's story (about chopping up his dead concubine and sending her body parts to each
tribe of Israel) they vowed not to "give" their daughters to the Benjamites. So now they had a problem: they just finished
killing all the Benjamite women and children (Jg 20:48) so there were no women for the surviving Benjamite men to marry.
[There were 600 Benjamite men that survived the war with the Israelites. (Jg 20:47)]
- To find wives for the Benjamites (they were unwilling to use their own daughters), the other tribes attacked
and killed all occupants of a city except for the young virgins. These virgins were then given to the Benjamites for
- Here's what the Israelites decide to do. They will go and kill everyone in Jabeshgilead except for the virgin
women and give them to the 600 surviving Benjamites. 21:11
- So the Israelites killed all the non-virgin women and children in Jabeshgilead, bringing back 400 virgin women
to give to the Benjamites. But they were still 200 short. Damn! 21:12-14
- Then the elders of the congregation said, How shall we do for wives for them that remain, seeing the women are
destroyed out of Benjamin?" 21:16
- "We may not give them wives of our daughters: for the children of Israel have sworn, saying, Cursed be he that
giveth a wife to Benjamin." 21:18
- So they come up with another brilliant plan. Have the Benjamites hide in the bushes and then catch the daughters
of Shiloh when they come out to dance. So that's what they did and everyone lived happily ever after. 21:19-23