Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Of Whores and Dogs

 

Is this title Clickbait? That would be a neat historical twist:

You shall not bring the wages of a harlot or the price of a dog to the house of the LORD your God for any vowed offering, for both of these are an abomination to the LORD your God. (Deut. 23:18)

How odd a commandment this is! Money is money – why cannot the proceeds from these particular sources be brought to serve G-d? A dog and a whore… what could they possibly have in common that makes them uniquely unsuitable for a holy task?

Joseph Cox has a genius answer: the word for “offering” is the same word as “to come close” – the purpose of any offering is to build a relationship with the divine. Offerings are meant to build holiness. They are meant to further a relationship with G-d Himself.

Our closest (non-divine) relationships in this world are supposed to be with our spouse and our children.

Here’s the punchline: a prostitute is a proxy for a real marriage. Prostitution is purely physical, transactional, and devoid of spiritualism. It is animalistic and divorced from true intimacy. So proceeds from prostitution cannot be used to build a relationship with G-d.

And dogs, as anyone in America knows, are proxies for real children. People invest their own spiritual energies in their dogs – but the dogs cannot grow and carry on our legacy as children can. As beloved as they are, dogs are mere stand-ins for the real thing. And so the value of a dog, too, cannot be used to build a holy relationship with the divine.

 

 

 

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  1. Boss Mongo Member

    I was ready to take umbrage at the title and the first paragraph. I got no truck with whores, but I’m a German Shepherd guy. I pay as much for my dogs as I do for my kids’ college education. So bringing the price of one of them to worship as an offering is quite a chunk of change. But, now, I get it. While my GSDs have never been proxies for my kids, anyone who thinks one is a stand-in for the other is a fool. Still, I do so love my GSDs.

    • #1
    • December 19, 2019, at 6:18 PM PST
    • 21 likes
  2. KentForrester Moderator

    Boss Mongo (View Comment):

    I was ready to take umbrage at the title and the first paragraph. I got no truck with whores, but I’m a German Shepherd guy. I pay as much for my dogs as I do for my kids’ college education. So bringing the price of one of them to worship as an offering is quite a chunk of change. But, now, I get it. While my GSDs have never been proxies for my kids, anyone who thinks one is a stand-in for the other is a fool. Still, I do so love my GSDs.

    Great photo, Boss. Those Rin Tin Tins look like they would eat Bob the dog.

    • #2
    • December 19, 2019, at 6:58 PM PST
    • 13 likes
  3. David Foster Member
    David Foster Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Clever argument, but…were dogs commonly used as pets (“companion animals”) in Biblical times? If not, the logic doesn’t really work.

    • #3
    • December 19, 2019, at 7:41 PM PST
    • 5 likes
  4. Boss Mongo Member

    KentForrester (View Comment):

    Boss Mongo (View Comment):

    I was ready to take umbrage at the title and the first paragraph. I got no truck with whores, but I’m a German Shepherd guy. I pay as much for my dogs as I do for my kids’ college education. So bringing the price of one of them to worship as an offering is quite a chunk of change. But, now, I get it. While my GSDs have never been proxies for my kids, anyone who thinks one is a stand-in for the other is a fool. Still, I do so love my GSDs.

    Great photo, Boss. Those Rin Tin Tins look like they would eat Bob the dog.

    Nah. They’d just sniff his butt and then play. Probably.

    • #4
    • December 19, 2019, at 7:46 PM PST
    • 8 likes
  5. Aaron Miller Member
    Aaron Miller Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    I suspect “the price of a dog” refers to gambling — aka, dog fighting. 

    In any case, the general principle is that we don’t honor the Lord by offering him the fruits of disobedience. We cannot sin in business and entertainment, living without orientation to Him, and respect Him on the weekends. Either we are His people or we are not. A life of holiness is a tall order.

    • #5
    • December 19, 2019, at 7:59 PM PST
    • 8 likes
  6. Kay of MT Member

    Boss, if you want to give one of them away, I’d like to have the one on your left. Looks like he would make a good service dog, just so you’d know.

    • #6
    • December 19, 2019, at 8:06 PM PST
    • 3 likes
  7. Kay of MT Member

    While I was raising my children I had dogs. They were guardian of my girls, and one even took a bullet for them.

    • #7
    • December 19, 2019, at 8:12 PM PST
    • 9 likes
  8. iWe Reagan
    iWe Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    David Foster (View Comment):

    Clever argument, but…were dogs commonly used as pets (“companion animals”) in Biblical times? If not, the logic doesn’t really work.

    We raised puppies well before we raised kittens or chickens; before we herded cows, goats, pigs, and sheep;

    There’s even scientific evidence supporting the bond between humans and dogs. When people look into each other’s eyes, we bond emotionally and release a hormone called oxytocin. A study led by Nagasawa found that when dogs and people gaze into each other’s eyes, the same hormone is released in both the humans and the dogs.

    In ancient Greece, dogs were kept as co-therapists in healing temples for their perceived ability to cure illness. This can be seen as the precursor of our modern practice of using therapy dogs to help people with a wide range of conditions.

    Pet ownership by the ruling or noble classes has a long history, dating back at least as far as ancient Egyptian times. Murals from this era depict pharaohs keeping companion animals. Many generations of Chinese emperors kept dogs that, as puppies, were often suckled by human wet nurses, and as adults were tended to by their own servants. Greek and Roman nobility were also avid pet keepers.

    I think this all supports the logic.

    • #8
    • December 20, 2019, at 5:18 AM PST
    • 5 likes
  9. PHenry Member

    iWe: the price of a dog

    Something doesn’t ring true. The price of a dog, given as tithe, would be the money made by selling a dog. You wouldn’t ( or shouldn’t) sell your child, so the idea of the dog as a child replacement doesn’t really work… Unless the point is that

    iWe: dogs. . . are proxies for real children.

    in that if you sell a dog that you love as you would a child, don’t bring that money to tithe, any more than if you sold a child.

    • #9
    • December 20, 2019, at 5:45 AM PST
    • 1 like
  10. Stad Thatcher

    Now for a little pet diversity:

    • #10
    • December 20, 2019, at 5:55 AM PST
    • 3 likes
  11. PHenry Member

    Stad (View Comment):

    Now for a little pet diversity:

    Are you saying that cats are whores too? ;)

    • #11
    • December 20, 2019, at 5:58 AM PST
    • 5 likes
  12. Stad Thatcher

    PHenry (View Comment):

    Stad (View Comment):

    Now for a little pet diversity:

    Are you saying that cats are whores too? ;)

    Well, since the “W-word” has not been expulsed by Max . . .

    One of my friends refers to cats as “hand whores” because they almost always love being petted.

     

    • #12
    • December 20, 2019, at 9:05 AM PST
    • 2 likes
  13. Misthiocracy got drunk and Member
    Misthiocracy got drunk and Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    This rule strikes me as unfair to dog breeders, and is yet another reason why Christ’s sacrifice was necessary.

    • #13
    • December 20, 2019, at 11:01 AM PST
    • 2 likes
  14. Misthiocracy got drunk and Member
    Misthiocracy got drunk and Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    iWe (View Comment):

    David Foster (View Comment):

    Clever argument, but…were dogs commonly used as pets (“companion animals”) in Biblical times? If not, the logic doesn’t really work.

    We raised puppies well before we raised kittens or chickens; before we herded cows, goats, pigs, and sheep;

    There’s even scientific evidence supporting the bond between humans and dogs. When people look into each other’s eyes, we bond emotionally and release a hormone called oxytocin. A study led by Nagasawa found that when dogs and people gaze into each other’s eyes, the same hormone is released in both the humans and the dogs.

    In ancient Greece, dogs were kept as co-therapists in healing temples for their perceived ability to cure illness. This can be seen as the precursor of our modern practice of using therapy dogs to help people with a wide range of conditions.

    Pet ownership by the ruling or noble classes has a long history, dating back at least as far as ancient Egyptian times. Murals from this era depict pharaohs keeping companion animals. Many generations of Chinese emperors kept dogs that, as puppies, were often suckled by human wet nurses, and as adults were tended to by their own servants. Greek and Roman nobility were also avid pet keepers.

    I think this all supports the logic.

    Hmm, this might explain the ancient Israelites’ antipathy towards canines. If all the cultures that oppressed and/or conquered the Israelites were really into dogs, then it makes some sense that the Israelites might start to associate dogs with bad mojo.

    • #14
    • December 20, 2019, at 11:04 AM PST
    • 1 like
  15. WillowSpring Member
    WillowSpring Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Boss Mongo (View Comment):
    Still, I do so love my GSDs.

    I’ve always felt that as I get older, I want a dog that I don’t need to lean over to pet. Yours seem to fit that rule. Here is “Willow”, the first of our 3 DeerHounds (and Mrs Spring) at a dog show. Deerhounds are the ultimate “leaner dog” they come up and lean on you to get their head scratched.

     

    • #15
    • December 20, 2019, at 3:37 PM PST
    • 3 likes
  16. Al French of Damascus Moderator

    Kay of MT (View Comment):

    While I was raising my children I had dogs. They were guardian of my girls, and one even took a bullet for them.

    There has to be a story in that.

    • #16
    • December 20, 2019, at 9:04 PM PST
    • 4 likes
  17. Kay of MT Member

    Al French, poor excuse for a p… (View Comment):

    Kay of MT (View Comment):

    While I was raising my children I had dogs. They were guardian of my girls, and one even took a bullet for them.

    There has to be a story in that.

    Yes, my younger daughter had a show pony, they won all the blue ribbons and trophys at the county fairs and horse shows. Somebody apparently tried to steal the pony while the girls were in school and I was at work. The lady next door claimed she heard the dogs barking up a storm, with Bonnie growling and snarling. Lady, the small dog, rand to the neighbor’s house and slammed up against her front door, just as the woman closed and locked it. Then there was a gun fired.

    The neighbor did not look out a window to see what was going on, nor did she call the sheriff regarding the dogs and gunshot, nor did she call me at work. We lived in a wooded area, and when the girls got home from school, on a school bus, Bonnie drug her way out of the forest and lay on the steps going into our house, she was covered in blood.

    The older girl was afraid to go into our house as Bonnie was guarding the steps, so went next door, to use the phone, and the damn b… wouldn’t let her in. She had to go across the street to find a phone to use to call me at work.

    It took me about 15 min to get home, without worrying about the speed limits, and got Bonnie to the vet, Lady was still on the neighbor’s porch curled up against the door, terrified. Our Vet Doc Tim Strong now living in Clear Lake CA, was able to do the surgery and save Bonnie. He gave Lady a shot to calm her down, and threatened to give me one if I didn’t calm down. You cannot imagine the absolute rage I was in. That woman did nothing, leaving my girls to walk into a possible deadly situation.

    The pony had not been taken, nor hurt, but I am sure that if someone was in our house, Bonnie would have given her life to protect the girls.

    • #17
    • December 21, 2019, at 4:46 PM PST
    • 6 likes
  18. Kay of MT Member

    BTW, Bonnie was a mix of Airedale and Collie. I wanted to sue the neighbor, but the sheriff told me she was under no obligation to call anybody. This was about 1974.

    • #18
    • December 21, 2019, at 4:55 PM PST
    • 3 likes
  19. Percival Thatcher
    Percival Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Kay of MT (View Comment):

    BTW, Bonnie was a mix of Airedale and Collie. I wanted to sue the neighbor, but the sheriff told me she was under no obligation to call anybody. This was about 1974.

    It is rotten behavior, no mistake, but probably not actionable.

    • #19
    • December 22, 2019, at 6:23 PM PST
    • 2 likes