In a radioscape dominated by the really moronic, talk jock Dr. Laura Schlesinger may be stand-out stupid. And we wouldn't ordinarily care, since looking for intelligent conversation on the radio is, in itself, evidence that you're stupid. And we're not. We've got a master's degree.
But we've always been intrigued by Schlesinger's Bible-based views on homosexuality. Biblical law—as anyone with a master's degree will tell you—is immensely complex, contradictory and, well, occasionally irrelevant. The single passage proscribing homosexuality, for example, appears alongside a host of really weird laws which, if followed, would make life around the world pretty much what you see in the Balkans and parts of Alabama.
Nevertheless, Dr. Laura has famously said that her own opposition to homosexuality is firmly grounded in biblical law. She isn't unusual in that sense; she just has a bigger megaphone. So we loved this letter now circulating anonymously on the Web.
Dear Dr. Laura:
Thank you for doing so much to educate people regarding God's Law. I have learned a great deal from you, and I try to share that knowledge with as many people as I can. When someone tries to defend the homosexual lifestyle, for example, I simply remind him that Leviticus 18:22 clearly states it is an abomination. End of debate.
I do need some advice from you, however, regarding some other biblical laws and how to best follow them.
(a) When I burn a bull on the altar as a sacrifice, I know it creates a pleasing odor for the Lord (Leviticus 1:9). The problem is my neighbors. They claim the odor is not pleasing to them. How should I deal with this?
(b) I would like to sell my daughter into slavery, as it suggests in Exodus 21:7. In this day and age, what do you think would be a fair price for her?
(c) I know that I am allowed no contact with a woman while she is in her period of menstrual uncleanliness (Leviticus 15:19-24). The problem is: How do I tell? I have tried asking, but most women take offense.
(d) Leviticus 25:44 states that I may buy slaves from the nations that are around us. A friend of mine claims that this applies to Mexicans but not Canadians. Can you clarify?
(e) I have a neighbor who insists on working on the Sabbath. Exodus 35:2 clearly states he should be put to death. I've called the police, but they are unable to help. Am I morally obligated to kill him myself?
(f) My boss invited me to a lunch meeting where alcohol will be served, but Leviticus 10:9 says I'll die if I go. Will I die even if I don't actually drink?
(g) A friend of mine feels that even though eating shellfish is an abomination (Leviticus 10:10), it is a lesser abomination than homosexuality. I don't agree. Can you settle this?
I know you have studied these things extensively, so I am confident you can help. Thank you again for reminding us that God's word is eternal and unchanging.