RAPE AND SEXUAL ABUSE

Dinah was defiled is today’s main Scripture portion from Genesis 34:2. And when Shechem the son of Hamor the Hivite, prince of the country, saw her, he took her, and lay with her, and defiled her. This is the rape of Dinah, Jacob’s only daughter.  When Dinah goes out to see the women in the town of Shechem, the son of Hamor the Hivite also named Shechem takes her by force and lays with her; afterwards, he wishes to marry her. Interestingly, the Hebrew meaning of the name Hamor is donkey, a herd animal renowned for its strength, intelligence, keen sense of curiosity, and stubbornness, which arises from an instinct for self-preservation.  Shechem turns to his father Hamor for help in securing Dinah’s hand in marriage covenant. The Hebrew in this passage of Scripture may hint Dinah is responsible for her actions, though not her misfortune. In Hebrew, a male youth is called a na’ar נער and a female youth is a na’arah נערה. In describing Dinah’s adventure to see the daughters of the land, the Torah calls her a na’ar and not a na’arah. True, it is only the difference of one letter, but this letter is the letter hey (ה), which can be used as an abbreviation for the name of God, and it is the suffix that generally makes words feminine in Hebrew, which is a gender-based language. “His heart was drawn to Dinah daughter of Jacob; he loved the young woman [han-na-‘ă-rā, הַֽנַּעֲרָ֔] and spoke tenderly to her.” in Genesis 34:3. If someone is not aware of how precise and exacting Torah scribes are, one might think this a simple typo a technical error. Knowing preciseness with which Torah scholars transcribe each Torah scroll, one would know removal of the letter hey was not a mistake, but deliberate act. It perhaps suggests Dinah’s solo jaunt into the city was made without awareness of her vulnerability. Dinah was going to visit women of the land not the men.  As the sister of 12 brothers, the longing for female company her own age could be considered quite natural.  She may have felt safe there, as well, since her family lived in the area in peace, having bought the land they dwell on from the sons of Hamor. We do not know the exact circumstances. Dinah went out with the confidence of a young naive woman not conscious of the predator dangers of entering the city alone as a young woman. Even today women need to recognize their vulnerabilities and walk in wisdom, not putting themselves in situations where purity or sanctity of mind, soul, and/or body could be endangered.  Of course, parents, both spiritual and legal, have a responsibility to teach, warn, and advise their children about these realities.Young girls and women lack knowledge without brain cortex fully formed to understand risk consequences. The idea and modern teaching says “women can do everything men can do and better, no way suggests women should sit around at home, either. Whatever her reasoning was, Dinah bears some responsibility for venturing out alone, while Shechem carries the full responsibility for his criminal and violent act toward a defenceless woman. The whole town paid a hefty price as all the men were killed by Diana’s brothers. They achieved this feat by asking them to be circumcised to qualify to marry Dinah. While nursing fresh wounds, they pounced on them in revenge killings so punished them for defiling Dinah. In Genesis 39:6-23 Joseph escaped from Potiphar’s Wife’s attempted rape. He escaped out of his cloak, leaving it in her hand and runs out of the house. She lied and told her husband the Hebrew tried to rape her, using her powerful position she was believe. So innocent Joseph who feared God refused to sin against God yet punished instead for 13 years. Dinah’s brother Joseph, almost suffered the same fate, seduced in attempted rape by Potipher’s wife, shows the case of relying on confession testimony of perpetrator for verdict is unreliable for justice. The innocent survivor is punished by society while perpetrator seems to go Scotch free but God will deal with them on judgement day. In Another case in point is Amnon, David’s oldest son in 2 Samuel 13:1-22-39, the first in line for the throne. Amnon was Tamar’s half-brother. Amnon son of David fell in love with Tamar, a virgin and beautiful sister of Absalom son of David. Amnon longed for Tamar so much that he became lovesick.It was even more difficult for him because she was a virgin meaning that she was available for marriage, but not to Amnon because marriage between half-brother and half-sister was forbidden. Amnon became so infatuated and obsessed by Tamar’s lovely beauty. Amnon’s friend Jonadab the son of Shimeah, David’s brother advised him to fake sickness and invite Tamar to cook for him. So alone with Tamar because David commanded it, it gave part of the responsibility to David. He refused to eat, Amnon showed by this everything he told David was a lie. He continued the deception so forced himself upon Tamar in the bedroom. This plan worked as Amnon isolated her and asked all siblings to give them privacy. This was a terrible mistake to leave those two on their own because Ammon’s motives towards his sister was evil. He forced himself upon his sister and raped her. Immediately after, Amnon hated her worse than he loved her so destroyed Tamar’s reputation and damaged her reputation. Amnon rejects Tamar then Amnon hated her exceedingly, so that the hatred with which he hated her was greater than the love with which he had loved her. And Amnon said to her, “Arise, be gone!” evil of sending Tamar away is worse than rape as nobody will have her in those days.

What Amnon did to Tamar was wrong, but he could still somewhat redeem the situation by either marrying her or paying her bride price in accordance with Exodus 22:16-17 and Deuteronomy 22:28-29.The payment was meant to compensate for the fact Tamar was less likely to be married because she was no longer a virgin. Her privileged position as a princess dressed in a robe of many colours extending all the way down to the wrists and ankles. Her garment of virginity soiled, he called his servants to put ‘this woman out and bolt the door behind her.’ Tamar deserved better treatment as an Israelite, a relative and as a sister. Tamar deserved better treatment as a princess. Despite all this, Amnon spitefully treated Tamar as this woman. In verse 19-20 Tamar mourns and Absalom comforts her. Then Tamar put ashes on her head, and tore her robe of many colours that was on her, and laid her hand on her head and went away crying bitterly. Absalom her brother said to her, “Has Amnon your brother been with you? hold your peace, my sister. He is your brother; do not take this thing to heart.” So Tamar remained desolate in her brother Absalom’s house. So Tamar exposed Amnon and put ashes on her head, and tore her robe: Tamar correctly treated this as a calamity so did not hide the truth of the terrible crime committed against her. She did not give place to the voice of shame saying, this was your fault. David did not punish Amnon’s lust despite pleas from Tamar’s mother and brother. Amnon refused to marry her so she was disgraced permanently and never married. Her God sent gift to marry was never accomplished because considered ‘damaged good’ in such a community. Coerced non-consensual unwilling participants in sexual unions with benevolent,sex is considered wrong inside and outside contractual agreement in marriage that condone rape of a spouse. In such cases, the punishments for rape is not compassion or trauma to the woman herself but for honour, tribal purity sense that a useful woman is damaged goods. A rapist can be forced, essentially to buy his victim. By contrast, a woman who voluntarily gives up purity may be killed because she transformed herself from family asset to liability. Coerced sex is considered wrong inside and outside contractual agreements of spouse in marriage. Some think as David wronged Bathsheba so Amnon wronged Tamar, “like father like son.” However, 2 wrongs do not make things right so rape and sexual abuse is not justified under any circumstances of revenge because all vengeance belongs to God. Trauma pain lasts all life long so destroys marital intimacy as violated person lives nightmares forever. Consequently, Absalom planned revenge years later inviting siblings to family get together party. He gave secret instruction to his servants to kill Ammon only during the party so caused family confusion for years.In modern society liberal views present sexual intimacy often sold with cars and material things as the source of pleasure in a relationship. So diminishes and devalues romance and the original choice and the proper use of sexual intimacy. So has porn and on-line website and perverse adult sites and revenge wars dehumanize sex with terrible consequences and rejection of survivors in some communities. Accepting rape pregnancy and falling in love with resulting child is unmitigated good of God the heavenly Father Jehovah Jireh Who Provides and supplies all needs. Therefore, seeing all pregnancy as God-intended and all childbirth as a blessing from a loving heavenly father helps to make this possible. Hagar and Ishmael provided for by God after sexual abuse of Abraham condoned by Sarah so prosper richly to date from Genesis 16:1-16 to Genesis 21:14-21. It is often assumed or expected as long as one exercises the right to fulfil the flesh, one is free to find someone to consent. The problem is the targeted person may not be keen or interested as much as the pursuer desperately seeking relieve. The survivor deals with rape and sexual abuse consequences for life. While perpetrators may not even remember the sexual abuse or rape because they treat people as sex objects. They manipulate, beat, kick, pull hair, grope, hurt, blackmail with guilt survivors who lives with pain, injury, broken bones,from violent abuses and remain affected for life. It is important and necessary not to trivialize sexual abuse, promiscuity and immorality deeply entrenched generationally. In the emotion of Lot’s family was a sacred invasion of sacred body Temple of God. No wonder the heathen Sodom and Gomorrah promiscuity lifestyle impacted Genesis 19:31-38 father daughter incest near the town of Tzo’ar is that the first born daughter Moab said to the younger daughter Ben-Ammi Ammon, Our father is old, and there is not a man in the earth to come in unto us after the manner of all the earth. Come, let us make our father drink wine, and we will lie with him, that we may preserve seed of our father. And they made their father drink wine that night: and the first born went in, and lay with her father; and he perceived not when she lay down, nor when she arose. And it came to pass on the morrow, that the first born said unto the younger, Behold, I lay last night with my father: let us make him drink wine this night also; and go thou in, and lie with him, that we may preserve seed of our Father. And they made their father drink wine that night also: and the younger arose, and lay with him; and he perceived not when she lay down, nor when she arose. Thus were both the daughters of Lot with child by their father. And the first born had a son, and called his name Moab the same is the father of the Moabites unto this day. And the younger, had son and called his name Benammi: the same is the father of the children of Ammon unto this day. Lot willingly drank and, when he was drunk, he lost what little control and common sense he had in Genesis 19:30–38, and this is the final step in Lot’s backsliding. The lesson can we learn from this is, when a person has too much to drink, he does not make good choices and loses control of his morals and operates out of the sinful, carnal nature. As a result of the incest, two children were born, and those two children are the fathers of two nations that have been at odds with and the source of much suffering to Israel down through history. Lot as a father offered his daughters to be gang raped in Genesis 19:1-11 so influenced their inhibitions on sexual boundaries. So schools must educate children from 5 years onwards of the priceless nature of their body. Emphasize nobody is allowed to touch and violate them secretly by concealed groomed gifts or special secrets. Not to be lured to partake rituals to indulge perverts in disguise lusting with ‘affection.’ Remember a child is not born with knowledge of sex so must taught to protect their body from 3 years to wash and clean themselves. To chaperon them with reliable trustworthy adults to avoid isolation and being taken advantage of by perverts. Parents accompany your children to parties and supervise them for their own good. Do not be manipulated into thinking it is a preserved environment for children only to condone perverts lurking around. Support children daily to ensure they do their homework and stay ahead in learning at school or home. Read to them to input reading skills and bedtime stories at night. Encourage sports to enable character forming life skills. Have a fruitful career solution to listen to your spouse to better balance work and family life. Booster your eternal family which lasts forever as all other things pass away. Your career must never interfere with Godly family life. Alcohol and drugs remove inhibitions so children must be made aware of their own body value early. Above, teach children early self-control, fear of God to resist like Joseph sexual motions not to act on own without Godly meaningful, loving, genuine, caring spouse is lust. It causes more harm, pain, hurts, sorrows and life time generational consequences. By the Grace of God, Christ Jesus forgives and washes all sins as red as scarlet as white as snow so repent and ask God for peace and inner healing from abuse. Forgive pervert and yourself because you do not want to be a neighbour to the pervert in hell. With God all things are possible as many testimonies exist including Joyce Meyer’s testimony among others encourage people to heal thrive in Jesus Name.

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