Does God Approve of Rape? (Dark Passages)

by Jimmy Akin

in +Religion, Apologetics, Bible, Moral Theology

What difference would it make whether a rape happened in a city or in the country?

A charge made by some atheists is that the Bible supports rape and that the God of the Bible is therefore a moral monster.

There are a number of passages they appeal to, attempting to document this claim, but do they really support the charge that is being made?

Let’s look at the matter . . .


What Does God Think of Rape?

(NOTE: This post is part of a series on the “dark passages” of the Bible. Click here to see all of the posts in the series.)

The claim that God has a favorable attitude toward rape is implausible on its face.

In all of the Bible passages that are cited to show this, the people involved are either married or unmarried. To rape a married woman would be forcible adultery, and to rape an unmarried woman would be forcible fornication.

As everyone knows, both adultery and fornication are strictly forbidden in the Bible. Doing either one forcibly would just make matters worse.

And, in fact, adultery carried the death penalty in the Old Testament:

Deuteronomy 22

[22] “If a man is found lying with the wife of another man, both of them shall die, the man who lay with the woman, and the woman; so you shall purge the evil from Israel.”

We’ll deal with the subject of the Old Testament’s harsh legal penalties–including the death penalty–in another post, but for now let’s look at a couple of the passages that are being cited as evidence that “God approves of rape” . . .


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