söndag 20 november 2016

Catholic vs Protestant Morality, a Challenge to JPHolding

11-17-2016, 02:23 PM I posted this on a board not viewed on Theologyweb unless you log in:

Does God's Law (Both Testaments) forbid deliberate infertile sex + interest on money?

I would answer, yes it does.

Or rather, as I am Catholic, above is polite and I am by canon law bound to that answer.

Now, for the arguments.

JPHolding had a very GOOD pair of videos on why Christians do have to avoid homosexual so called marriage but don't have to avoid shrimp sandwiches.

In it he said (I don't recall on which) sth about the landlord having certain principles and tastes which could be evident from contracts, and could be used to supplement a newer and shorter lease contract. Only fault of video was saying that the older contract can still be signed.

BUT, I am not here (on this thread) to debate that fault, I am here to use that excellent point.

The "landlord" being of course allegory for the one true God who was exacting certain things from signatories of an older covenant and is now exacting at least partly other things, in detail, but essentially same thing from signatories of the newer one.

Now, deliberately making the sex act (meaning here an act which if done will procure sexual pleasure and in man ejaculation) unfertile can be done in a few ways. I am here supposing all parties agree that killing of fetus after conception is murder, so we only need to discuss what happens up to it.

  • Barrier.
  • Chemistry.
  • Interrupting sex act.
  • Chosing partner of same sex.
  • Chosing partner of different, bestial, kind.
  • Doing it yourself.

The first two are not mentioned as such.

This is where the advocates of contraception get their argument, and essentially it is a sola scriptura (and therefore heretical) argument about Christian morality. Though most adherents of sola scriptura have not made it and not agreed with it, up to 1930 Lambeth Conference.

But the argument that JPHolding made about the two testaments is not quite in as great detail fleshed out in scripture. So, perhaps at least longstanding Christians or those of Jewish descent should skip shrimp sandwich after all?

Or worship on Sabbath, extending it only to Sunday morning?

Or, sola scriptura requiring each forbidden thing to be forbidden in a chapter and verse in Bible perhaps does not apply?

As Holding actually argued.

ALL of the other methods are mentioned and ALL of them in very negative terms. Of these three, two and a half are directly mentioned in Old Testament:

  • Interrupting sex act.
  • Chosing partner of same sex.
  • Chosing partner of different, bestial, kind.

The mid one is only mentioned about masculine homosexuality in Old Testament.

In St Paul we come to a verse which also condemns the feminine homosexuality, directly.

AND one, will check if same, which forbids doing it yourself.

No, different ones. First word in 1 Cor 6:10 means those who do it solo. And it is Romans 1, verses 26 and 27, which mention lesbianism before sodomy.

There is another one.

Doing it during infertile period. It is explicitly mentioned in Old Law, and St Thomas argues that if that does not hold under mortal sin in New Law, that is because girls can sometimes get pregnant while menstruating. Obviously, that implies St Thomas was living in a society where a girl marrying and begetting before her periods become really periodic, more like 12-13 than 18-20, perhaps, and St Thomas argues "it is not a mortal sin, since the period does not totally prevent the conception of children, but a venial one, since children so produced are often damaged".

He was probably thinking of babies born to 12 year old mothers who had been giving premature birth and thus given birth to babies who were weak after only 8 or 7 months, or sth. Reinterpreted in light of later gynaecology, this would imply a girl marrying very young is a venial rather than a mortal sin, considering the risks.

So, doing it during menstruation in order to avoid children might have been one of the things God detested Canaanites for.

That leaves virtually no, not even the unmentioned barrier and chemistry methods, untouched by God's wrath. And makes J. P. Holdings argument for an alternative reading about Onan very improbable, even apart from being un-Catholic.

For J. P. Holding, but NOT for me, there is another text too.

KJV 1 Cor 7:1 has "in this present concern", where my DR has "Now concerning the thing whereof you wrote to me:". And perhaps KJV is more literal to the Greek actual wording.

Holding takes (took?) "present concern" as meaning a starvation. I think this unlikely, since nowhere else in 1 or 2 Cor does St Paul directly refer to any, but let's suppose so.

The following part is important:

"It is good for a man not to touch a woman."

If Christian spouses had been allowed to use the barrier method (and yes, it existed, even if it might have been more expensive than chemicals), why would there be any economic danger in touching a woman? After all, the argument is, in Holding, though not to us Catholics, there are more mouths to feed and so it is risky during a starvation.

Well, if Christian spouses are free to use the barrier method, and Corinth was certainly not a place where it was unknown! then that would take care of it. A couple without children leaves cheaper than the two separately. So, in a starvation, if couples are free to use contraception, why not extol couples instead of discouraging them?

There are two answers to that one, one being that the "present concern" was simply a question about marriage and celibacy asked by the Corinthians (who know Jews were usually supposed to be married, but who had seen St Paul unmarried).

That one J. P. Holding unfortunately rejects, but this leaves him with the other answer, namely that Christian spouses are supposed to make children (or to try, or not to try not to) when embracing each other.

Same video also brought to my mind the question of usury. Did a google on DRBO, first four hits:

1 Leviticus 25:36
Take not usury of him nor more than thou gavest: fear thy God, that thy brother may live with thee.
2 Leviticus 25:37
Thou shalt not give him thy money upon usury, nor exact of him any increase of fruits.
3 Deuteronomy 23:19
Thou shalt not lend to thy brother money to usury, nor corn, nor any other thing:
4 Deuteronomy 23:20
But to the stranger. To thy brother thou shalt lend that which he wanteth, without usury: that the Lord thy God may bless thee in all thy works in the land, which thou shalt go in to possess.

First of all, is stranger anyone outside family, anyone outside alliance, or rather enemies, conversely is brother your family members, or do conational otherwise strangers also qualify, or do even not conationals qualify?

For first passage (the four hits are just two passages), the previous verse is:

[35] If thy brother be impoverished, and weak of hand, and thou receive him as a stranger and sojourner, and he live with thee,

Sounds a bit further off than just close family, right?

For second passage we have this:

[7] Thou shalt not abhor the Edomite, because he is thy brother: nor the Egyptian, because thou wast a stranger in his land.

In other words, yes, the prohibition against taking interest (that is how usury is defined in first passage) extends even beyond the national boundaries of Israelites.

How about the New Testament?

Three hits are given.

First two are inverted as per verses, putting them right way:

  • "2") Luke 6:34
    And if you lend to them of whom you hope to receive, what thanks are to you? for sinners also lend to sinners, for to receive as much.

  • "1") Luke 6:35
    But love ye your enemies: do good, and lend, hoping for nothing thereby: and your reward shall be great, and you shall be the sons of the Highest; for he is kind to the unthankful, and to the evil.

  • 3) Luke 11:5
    And he said to them: Which of you shall have a friend, and shall go to him at midnight, and shall say to him: Friend, lend me three loaves,

Did you get it? "for sinners also lend to sinners, for to receive as much" - hoping to recover the capital but taking no usury is not very righteous. The really righteous thing to do is to not even hope to recover the capital.

That obviously means not making moneylending your main business.

I included third hit, because here it is about lending loaves. In Deuteronomy, besides money is mentioned corn. This means that the principle also extends to consumable goods.

Corn is consumed whether you sow it or bake it. Loaves are consumed if you eat them.

The person borrowing three loaves was not expected to give back three and a half loaves or three loaves and one donut. To the Bible, this is the principle valid for money too.

So far not answered by J. P. Holding, though one of his supporters gave adverse reviews on my value on marital market, and he chimed in with that one. That is about three days he shirks debate./HGL

Arguments received in return so far (but not from Holding) include strawmen like:

What about infertile couples?

When infertility is known, abstinence is recommended, but sex in such a case is not "deliberately infertile sex" since the infertility is not by human deliberation, but by an act of God (or Providence) and can be removed by such (at least by Miracle, or by diagnosis being mistaken).

What about inflation?

Updating nominal account is NOT charging interest on real value, if strictly just an updating of it.

Also, real points:

Real Point
"thy brother" means kinsman.

Not so, see context for one OT prooftext.

Real Point
Banks charge interest and invest in stockholding.

Stockholding is different, since you take a risk of losing value if company loses value.
Real Point
Banks charge interest and invest in stockholding.

[Point not fully given yet:]
Real Point
Banks charge interest and invest in stockholding.

That bank takes interest makes it comparable to thief, you are therefore accepting stolen goods by accepting interest from bank. You should give back, not to bank but to those it took interest from, or the poor, or the Church.