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Jesus, the biologist

Oh, joy…yet another bible-walloping lackwit claiming that god hates gay marriage…and this time he claims to have a biological justification.


“You only have 15 percent of the middle who are hypocrites, who think, Jesus is cool, but I don’t agree with how he defined marriage,” Klingenschmitt said. “When Jesus talks about one flesh, he’s really being a scientist, he’s being a biologist. Because he realizes and he’s articulating simple biology, that when a sperm and an egg form together, they match in a zygote and a new DNA is formed and it becomes one new human flesh.”

“[W]e’re not reading our biology textbooks,” the former chaplain added.

“Which were written by Jesus, as you say,” Pakman pointed out. “Jesus was a biologist.”

“Well, he defined marriage between one man and one women, becoming one zygote, becoming one flesh,” Klingenschmitt insisted. “And that’s the only way in the next 100 years that humans are going to be able to procreate. If you get two men together and they mate, they’re not going to have a baby. If you get three women and a dog together, and they all mate together, they’re not going to have a baby.”

Wait, wait there. I can read Matthew 19 just as well as Satan can, and that’s where he claims Jesus is discussing biology. Here’s the relevant passage:

And he answered and said unto them, Have ye not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female,

And said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh?

Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.

Jesus is talking about the man and woman becoming “one flesh”, not sperm and egg. He also doesn’t mention zygote even once.

He’s not describing fertilization at all. That’s the plot of The Human Centipede!

Comments

  1. hexidecima says

    poor Christians, what they forget is that their god supposedly hates *all* marriage and marriage is considered only a poor substitute to remaining a virgin/eunuch. As always, Christians take the easy way out, not even trying to remain a virgin or whacking their genitalia off.

  2. says

    Thanks to Netflix streaming, I laughed very hard at the reference to The Human Centipede.

    But, of course, that passage has nothing at all to do with procreation. It has to do with divorce. Jesus says no divorce. Ever. Period. Except, of course, if she’s sleeping around — then it’s totes OK as per Jesus. Him sleeping around? Nope. No divorce for you, little lady. Suck it up and procreate some more.

  3. jamessweet says

    Wait, didn’t Klingenschmitt already get in trouble a couple of times for wearing his uniform for things like this? Or am I misremembering?

  4. Rev. BigDumbChimp says

    Klingenschmitt makes frequent appearances in the biggest dumbfuck of the day parade. As Eamon Knight says, Ed has taken him down numerous times.

  5. says

    Again, to Christianists, marriage is only ever about what happens in bed, and whether what goes on there is a concerted attempt to manufacture more human beings. Things like “love” and “companionship” are irrelevancies at best. So again the question becomes: infertile straight couples…elderly ones? Deny them marriage rights too?

    DJ, you want another example of atheist “winning”? How about defeating idiocy like this?

  6. thumper1990 says

    *Headdesk*

    The twain becoming one flesh is quite clearly a metaphor for consummating the marriage. At least, I always assumed so, given the context. Especially given the next sentence, and the fact that historically a couple was not considered married until the marriage was consummated.

    I read that passage as saying: ” A man will leave his father and mother to be married; and once the marriage is consummated, they are married and may never be divorced”.

    Not exactly making the point he thinks it is, is it?

  7. Amphiox says

    It’s also a logical category error. Even if the passage could be interpreted as praise for one type of union it doesn’t say anything about the preclusion of other types of unions.

  8. chem says

    Wow near the end he starts talking about “the gay species” and how they “recruit” young people to be gay. I’m not sure if everyone remembers “the gays” coming to your door and asking you to sign up but I sure don’t.

    I’m almost positive the only reason there’s gay people today is because straight people had babies

  9. carbonbasedlifeform says

    poor Christians, what they forget is that their god supposedly hates *all* marriage and marriage is considered only a poor substitute to remaining a virgin/eunuch.

    As a response to a Christian unjustly slamming gays, you go just as far in misrepresenting Christians.

    I’m no fan of Christianity, but you should at least state their actual beliefs, not a caricature of them.

  10. grumpyoldfart says

    I’ll bet the fundie Christians listening to that broadcast are now telling all their friends that the bible is the greatest biology text book ever written – and Klingenschmitt is patting himself on the back and saying, “See, it does pay to tell lies for Jesus.”

  11. nightshadequeen says

    Carbon life form:

    http://skepticsannotatedbible.com/1cor/7.html#1

    7:1 Now concerning the things whereof ye wrote unto me: It is good for a man not to touch a woman.
    7:2 Nevertheless, to avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife, and let every woman have her own husband.
    7:3 Let the husband render unto the wife due benevolence: and likewise also the wife unto the husband.
    7:4 The wife hath not power of her own body, but the husband: and likewise also the husband hath not power of his own body, but the wife.
    7:5 Defraud ye not one the other, except it be with consent for a time, that ye may give yourselves to fasting and prayer; and come together again, that Satan tempt you not for your incontinency.
    7:6 But I speak this by permission, and not of commandment.
    7:7 For I would that all men were even as I myself. But every man hath his proper gift of God, one after this manner, and another after that.
    7:8 I say therefore to the unmarried and widows, It is good for them if they abide even as I.
    7:9 But if they cannot contain, let them marry: for it is better to marry than to burn.

  12. qwerty says

    4. Jamessweet – No, you are remembering correctly. He got in trouble because he wore his uniform at political events which is against military regulations. He isn’t a chaplain anymore because he has been kicked out. Don’t know why David Pakman recognizes him as such.

    In my opinion, he is just another right-wing anti-gay crackpot.

  13. says

    I do wish he’d expand on the first part of the Babble quote where. “Have ye not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female…” One of each, if I’m not mistaken. Well, one from dirt and lint and whatever was laying around, the other from the rib of the first one. Then there was a whole lot of cleaving going on, apparently, but I’ve always been curious about their male offspring leaving their father and mother and cleaving with… who exactly? Or what?

  14. carbonbasedlifeform says

    First, I would not quote from the Skeptic’s Annotated Bible, which might seem to be just a bit biased. Next, even the bit that you quoted does NOT say “god supposedly hates *all* marriage”, and don’t pretend it does.

    Second, as Paul makes it quite clear in 1 Corinthians, he is giving his opinion that not being married is better than being married. I suggest that you read the entire chapter. You are, as I said, giving a caricature of Christian belief, not the actual belief.

    There are Christian writers you might have cited — Jerome, the man who wrote the Latin Vulgate translation of the Bible, directly compared a woman’s vagina to a sewer, and said that the only good thing about marriage was that it produced virgins. Or you might have cited Augustine of Hippo, who wrote that sexual intercourse, even between a husband and wife, without the express intention of procreation, was sinful. But that bit from Paul does not actually say what you would like it to say.

  15. Thomathy, Gay Where it Counts says

    If you get three women and a dog together, […]

    I don’t even …

    I’d like to crack a joke about this asshole’s porn habits, but there are several reasons in that one phrase alone that prevent me from getting past that one phrase. There’s nothing funny there at all; on every level that is a vile and disgusting mind at work. I don’t even want to begin listing all that’s awful in that phrase. What the fuck is wrong with him? What the fuck is wrong with people like him?

    Ugh!

  16. says

    So, how does he respond to the fact that Jesus got his facts wrong about the mustard seed being the smallest? The usual defense is to say that the bible is not a science textbook, but that undermines his first point.

  17. vaiyt says

    The way he talks about it, makes it sound like marriage is a breeding program, like we do with cattle and dogs.

  18. patterson says

    “One flesh”. Do they not know how creepy that sounds? Would make for a great Dr Who monster though, something like the abzorbaloff meets the Borg.

  19. optimalcynic says

    chem @10:

    I’m not sure if everyone remembers “the gays” coming to your door and asking you to sign up but I sure don’t.

    If you haven’t been visited, can I get your address? I’m short on my homosexual recruitment target this month.

  20. fastlane says

    Klingenshit is always good for a chuckle. He did get in trouble for doing something like this in uniform. I’m pretty sure he has since been discharged from the military. I don’t recall the details, but I think the Navy let him get out without a ‘dishonorable’, but I could be wrong.

  21. says

    What makes the whole “one flesh” thing disturbing for me is the quotes I’ve seen where it was used to condone marital rape.

  22. robro says

    carbonbased

    “I would not quote from the Skeptic’s Annotated Bible, which might seem to be just a bit biased” — Why not? Is it any more biased than any of the other versions? If there is an unbiased version, please point me in that direction.

    “You are, as I said, giving a caricature of Christian belief, not the actual belief.” — I’m hard pressed to know what the “actual belief” of Christianity is. There are many Christianities, particularly when you look back in time. Which one are you thinking of? As I recall the passage from First Corinthians* and some others from the Pauline letters seem to be addressing the fact that some early Christians were abandoning their families (i.e. divorce), among other bizarre things, to prepare for the end because they believed god hated anything “of the flesh,” including marriage and sex. Vestiges of such Gnostic anti-physical beliefs do still lurk in some of the sects. You may note that some of the sects don’t allow their priests to marry because to be truly pure you must be celibate.

    * Of course, it’s no more clear what “Paul” said than what god hates (god still hasn’t spoken) but even First Corinthians acknowledges a second writer. Paul is as much a fictional character as Jesus, and yet another messiah in the rather long list of them recorded in the Bibles.

  23. aziraphale says

    Carbonbasedlifeform:

    The text in the Skeptic’s Annotated Bible is the King James version, unaltered. I don’t think that can be accused of bias. It was the version read in every church I ever attended.

  24. says

    robro: I think we do have evidence of a “real” Paul. However, many of the writings attributed to him in the bible are not actually his work.

    I have no idea about this particular passage, however. Richard Carrier would know. Or Robert Price. Or dozens of others.

    But I think it’s a stretch to say Paul was fictional. Frankly, without Paul I don’t think Christianity would be anything other than a tiny splinter Jewish sect, following all the laws and commandments, but waiting for the messiah to return. They would be a deadly bore at parties.

    In any event, I certainly agree with you that Jesus is fictional. Just how fictional is a subject of endless fascination for me. I waffle between “completely mythical” and “a composite character based on several to dozens of Messianic Jews of the era, later heavily mythologized by the Hellenes”.

    But I do love the book of “Mark” (another mythical character, FWIW). Jesus the Demon Hunter. Joss Whedon must have gotten some of his ideas for Buffy the Vampire Slayer from “Mark”.

  25. Azuma Hazuki says

    As far as Paul goes, I am fairly sure consensus says there was such a person. He made a complete bollocks out of what Jesus (or “Jesus” for the mythicists; I am not among that number!) actually said, and ironically that is good proof that there was such a person. To err is human and all that.

    So far as “recruiting” goes, i know for certain in at least my own case it didn’t happen that way. When you know you’re gay before you know what gay is, when you realize that you feel about your female classmates the way boys are supposed to and don’t know why, well…no recruitment necessary. Or prior abuse; my sister is straight as an arrow, and she was not only abused but actually raped.

    About a year ago on FB I saw someone’s post which said “Homophobia is the fear from a man that another man will treat them the way they treat women.” This may be at the base of a lot of this lovely gay-hating culture we’re seeing.

  26. Usernames are smart says

    I think we do have evidence of a “real” Paul.Kevin #33

    Sounds good; please post the link or the peer-reviewed journal reference and I’ll take a gander.

    Frankly, without Paul I don’t think Christianity would be anything other than a tiny splinter Jewish sect ~.

    You’re thinking about Emperor Constantine, who saved the backwards social outcast Jewish sect from obscurity and propelled it into a mainstream state religion (source: Erhman. Bart D. “Misquoting Jesus”. HarperCollins. 2005. 74-75).

  27. carlie says

    I supervised the creation of hundreds of zygotes today. Then I aborted them all.

    Nothing sacred about it.

  28. gregpeterson says

    With Jesus himself not being the product of the union of a sperm and an egg (I assume–does anyone maintain that God the Father used SPERM to impregnate Mary? although come to think of it, what else COULD he use? Heh heh…I said “come”), what kind of monster/chimera/mutant-freak does that make JESUS using this biology lesson? Jesus the Biology Teacher is himself not the product of the biology he’s teaching about? I mean, at some point you just have to stop yourself and say, Gawd, this might all just happen to be pure bullshit. Ya think?

  29. widestance says

    This is why I come to Pharyngula almost daily: because I learn such interesting things. For instance, before I read this article, I thought the reason for my wife’s infertility was scarred Fallopian tubes. But now I have seen the light: Jesus hates us!

    Now we can skip that fertility doc appointment in an hour and just pray harder. Thank you, random homophobic street preacher.

  30. Thomathy, Gay Where it Counts says

    or “Jesus” for the mythicists; I am not among that number!

    It’s interesting that you mention your surety that there is consensus that such as person as Paul exists, but emphatically state that you’re not a Jesus mythicist when there certainly is no consensus that such a person as Jesus existed. In fact, it’s absolutely certain that the Jesus of the Bible did not exist. People who come back to life from the dead and perform miracles as attributed to Jesus are not real.

    If you’re not a mythicist, then what is your position? It’s not enough to merely state that you’re not a mythicist. Do you believe in the existence of a Biblical Jesus? I might presume not and, in that case, I simply can’t imagine what alternative there is except that the Jesus of the Bible is mythical.

    And by mythical, the Jesus of the Bible could be anything from entirely constructed from mythological archetypes or an amalgam of more-or-less contemporary (to the time of Jesus) messianic figures (with awesome and impossible feats fictionalised). Since there is a paucity (nay, an absence) of contemporary evidence for a Biblical Jesus and considering further that the Jesus as described in the Bible is an impossible being, some clarification of your position is warranted.

  31. Azuma Hazuki says

    Thomathy:

    It’s Bayesian =P And yes, I’m fully aware that one’s priors are simply a reflection of already-existing knowledge flavored by biases.

    Basically, because I know there was a small flood (a plague?) of people like Jesus from ~100BC to ~100AD (that is, doomsaying, apocalyptic prophets with aspirations to messiahhood), I think it’s likely there was another one named Yeshua bar Yousef. I separate Jesus/Yeshua (Joshua!) from Christ; I am most definitely a “Christ mythicist” as are all non-Christians.

    The “historical Jesus” people purport to know is likely an amalgamation of several people, but I do believe there was one person at the core; that is, that over time stories of other people, several of whom were named Yeshua, got added to the person. In effect I believe there were two layers of mythmaking, one done on Yeshua proper and another done to elevate composite-Jesus to Godhood.

  32. Thomathy, Gay Where it Counts says

    An interesting but (as yet) unevidenced belief. Thanks, for the clarification!

  33. Azuma Hazuki says

    Well…I’m not an expert on this. It’s almost purely guesswork. But at least it’s not unreasonable, and it doesn’t conflict with any known facts so far as I know. Whether Yeshua himself existed or not is almost moot, isn’t it?

    Besides, people believe in a historical Sakyamuni Buddha, but wasn’t it almost 500 years between when he supposedly lived and when the texts about him were written?

  34. Thomathy, Gay Where it Counts says

    Yeah, I hear that. The issue of historicity hinges on contemporary evidence. In the absence of that evidence and in the presence of other evidence (usually negative), the null hypothesis is reasonably that the person wasn’t real (was mythical).

    However, in the case of the historicity of Jesus, there’s ample contemporary evidence for the existence of other ‘characters’ from the Bible (like Pontius Pilate), but literally none for anyone who could be Jesus. The juxtaposition of there being so much evidence for other historical contemporaries of the Jesus character and none for that Jesus character, not to mention the fact that the Bible is largely fictionalised, is enough to suppose as an initial premise that no historical Jesus existed.

    And you’re right that it probably is a moot point, since the only thing that survives is the Biblical character and we can outright discount the existence of anyone like that. Still, it is extremely problematic academically and a very clear boundary crossing of Christian thought into the legitimate study of history to suppose that Jesus existed in the absence of any evidence and to try, as historians and scholars have done (and do), to grasp at any possible piece of evidence to fit their forgone conclusion about the existence of Jesus. It wouldn’t be so bad if so many people weren’t highly motivated by their faith to confirm their forgone conclusion, but unless you’re a Christian there really isn’t a reason to even suspect that Jesus ever existed.

    I don’t know enough about the Buddha to know if there is contemporary evidence for his existence, but proving his historicity involves the same requirements, namely contemporary evidence. Even then, it’s not like we can ever know for sure, but it is certainly an issue of bias and misplaced motivation to go into some study with a forgone conclusion. I think you’ll appreciate why that’s extremely problematic to the study of something without me having to spell it out for you.

  35. kemist, Dark Lord of the Sith says

    With Jesus himself not being the product of the union of a sperm and an egg (I assume–does anyone maintain that God the Father used SPERM to impregnate Mary? although come to think of it, what else COULD he use? Heh heh…I said “come”), what kind of monster/chimera/mutant-freak does that make JESUS using this biology lesson?

    That would be the product of two fused ova from the same woman.

    So, if such a baby were to be born it’d be:

    1- Female
    2- Homozygous for a high proportion of its genes, with all the widespread problems this causes for any lethal and/or severely debilitating recessive, as well as HLAs.

    This was a question I always had at the back of my mind when I still believed as a teenager: where the fuck does Jesus’ Y chromosome came from ? If it came from god, does that mean god has DNA ? What would that look like ?

    And yes, I’ve always been this terminally geeky, to the annoyance of a good many people around me, including the priest who was supposed to supervise our confirmation ceremony.

  36. Azuma Hazuki says

    Kemist:

    Stop THINKING. That’s a sin you know. God did it how God did it because God did it.

  37. jefers says

    Milton did the whole ‘one flesh’ bit much better than Jesus and he didn’t even have to pretend to be a biologist:

    I with thee have fixt my Lot,
    Certain to undergoe like doom, if Death
    Consort with thee, Death is to mee as Life;
    So forcible within my heart I feel
    The Bond of Nature draw me to my owne,
    My own in thee, for what thou art is mine;
    Our State cannot be severd, we are one,
    One Flesh; to loose thee were to loose my self.

  38. Gregory Greenwood says

    Chem @ 10;

    I’m not sure if everyone remembers “the gays” coming to your door and asking you to sign up but I sure don’t.

    I bet they would would be much less annoying than Jehovah’s Witnesses…

  39. says

    “a sperm and an egg form together, they match in a zygote and a new DNA is formed and it becomes one new human flesh.”

    From what I understood, is it not possible to go to twins and beyond after this point? Also the lower bound is obviously zero. I tried to get the clowns at Catholic Fundamentalism to nail down for me exactly when their “soul” came into the picture in the beginning and left at the end. Apparently they had not considered the alternative possibilities.

  40. CJO says

    You’re thinking about Emperor Constantine, who saved the backwards social outcast Jewish sect from obscurity and propelled it into a mainstream state religion

    You’ve skipped the entire 2nd and 3rd centuries. Think about it: why would the Emperor, ruler of the known world, want anything to do with a “backwards social outcast Jewish sect”? By the late 3rd century, Christianity was anything but obscure. Cerainly Constantine’s boosterism was a pivotal development, but it did not “save” the church, which could not have functioned as a state religion if it were not already attracting adherents among the rich and powerful.

    As regards the historicity of Paul, someone wrote a substantial portion of what are regarded as the 7 genuine epistles, so to that extent there must have been a “historical Paul.” What is in doubt is the extent to which that person’s life and career answers to either the one alluded to by passages in the letters or the legendary one narrated in Acts. I tend to side with the idea that “Paul” is a cipher, a concocted identity used to tame or rehabilitate the author of writings that had either become anonymous or were actually written by a known figure of dubious legacy.

  41. Gregory Greenwood says

    Bronze Dog @ 30;

    What makes the whole “one flesh” thing disturbing for me is the quotes I’ve seen where it was used to condone marital rape.

    I have run into this too. There are plenty of fundamentalist arsehats who are champing at the bit to use that passage to try to roll back the (relatively recent) criminalisation of marital rape on the basis that the legal system has no authority to deny a husband his supposedly ‘god given’ right to his wife’s body on the basis that, since they are ‘one flesh’, it is not solely her body anymore.

    Somehow I doubt that they would be quite so happy were the logical implications of that idea going two ways to be explored. Does it mean that the wife has the right to decide that the shared marital flesh should have a vesectomy? Or some pectoral implants? Or perhaps a tattoo saying “property of *insert wife’s name*” across the face of the part of the shared marital flesh that has a ‘Y’ chromosome?

    Ah – how foolish of me. I keep forgetting that, in the world according to xians, only men are deserving of all these rights of bodily autonomy. Living sex toys Women need not apply. *retch*

  42. WhiteHatLurker says

    @aziraphale

    The text in the Skeptic’s Annotated Bible is the King James version, unaltered. I don’t think that can be accused of bias.

    I would disagree, but I see the overall point you’re making.

    @kemist …

    where the fuck does Jesus’ Y chromosome came from ?

    Um, Joseph?

  43. changerofbits says

    kemist, if it wasn’t obvious where that Y chromosome came from, it’s easy. Mary was a chimera, with one testis and one ova.

  44. kemist, Dark Lord of the Sith says

    Um, Joseph?

    But then what’s the point of the whole virgin birth thing ?

    I was a catlicker, and this thing was just as much part of what you had to believe as Jesus’ resurrection.

    kemist, if it wasn’t obvious where that Y chromosome came from, it’s easy. Mary was a chimera, with one testis and one ova.

    So I guess that’s what this “holy ghost” was.

    A really weird teratoma.

  45. blf says

    As others have pointed out, Gordon Klingenschmitt is a nutter frequently mocked over at Ed’s blog. Here is a summary of Klingenschmitt from the Encyclopedia of American Loons:

    Gordon Klingenschmitt is a former navy chaplain (removed by the Pentagon, but refuses to admit to having being thrown out), occasional columnist for WorldNetDaily, and vehemently insane. He is fanatically anti-gay and a fan of imprecatory prayer. He applied it, for instance, against Mikey Weinstein, leader of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation, and Barry Lynn of Americans United for Separation of Church and State. The tone is fascinatingly old Testament: “Let their days be few, and replace them with Godly people. Plunder their fields, and seize their assets. Cut off their descendants, and remember their sins, in Jesus’ name. Amen” …. Charming fellow, in other words.

    Klingenschmitt is in fact a champion of religious freedom, but only if it is understood his way — i.e. as observing God’s first commandment. I am not sure he is a liar for Jesus as much as an ignorant moron and willful misunderstander for Jesus. He is, unsurprisingly, also a DeMar style revisionist and theocrat.

    Diagnosis: Batshit crazy raging fundamentalist and nutjob (and Liar for Jesus). Probably too insane to be any real danger, but one never knows.

  46. says

    gregpeterson:

    what kind of monster/chimera/mutant-freak does that make JESUS

    The “H” in Jesus H Christ is short for “haploid”

  47. carbonbasedlifeform says

    As I recall the passage from First Corinthians* and some others from the Pauline letters seem to be addressing the fact that some early Christians were abandoning their families (i.e. divorce), among other bizarre things, to prepare for the end because they believed god hated anything “of the flesh,” including marriage and sex.

    Yeah, and in 1 Corinthians 7, Paul is saying that they shouldn’t do it. Saying that “Paul” is the author of the books attributed to him is, if nothing else, a convenience.

    My point stands. Attack Christianity, certainly. But do not attack a caricature of it, since that just makes you look silly. To say to just about any Christian “God hates all marriage” will get you dismissed with derision, and rightly so.

  48. greg1466 says

    Just the standard right wing false equating of marriage and procreation. And again, what is it with hard core xians and beastiality?

  49. fastlane says

    greg1466:

    And again, what is it with hard core xians and beastiality?

    I appreciate that this may be an interesting sociological question, but I for one, don’t want to fucking know!