Numbers 5:11-31

Trigger warning: Abortion

Those of you who are familiar with my debating rhetoric probably know that I am partial to these verses. While Exodus 21 (pre-Happy Meal translations) and certain lines referencing the breath of life have their merits, nothing quite sums up the Biblical point of view, for me, than a ritual for which the intention was to destroy a fetus.

The text of Numbers 5:11-31 goes on at some length, repeating its contents about three times, but the key part is this:

Then the priest shall put the woman under oath and say to her, “If no other man has had sexual relations with you and you have not gone astray and become impure while married to your husband, may this bitter water that brings a curse not harm you. But if you have gone astray while married to your husband and you have made yourself impure by having sexual relations with a man other than your husband”— here the priest is to put the woman under this curse—“may the Lord cause you to become a curse among your people when he makes your womb miscarry and your abdomen swell. May this water that brings a curse enter your body so that your abdomen swells or your womb miscarries.”

This is one of several reasons why I do not believe the Bible upholds a right to life from conception onward.

Rather than go on at length about my pro-choice position (I feel little I have to say would be new to anyone), I’d like to signal boost someone else instead.

Trigger warning for abortion and rape discussion.

Defeating the Dragons: Ordeal of the Bitter Waters

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