Welcome to my first ever guest blog from Karl Wiggins, one of the most interesting author’s you’ll ever meet.
He is a prolific writer of comedy and I love him, because humour is my favourite genre and Karl makes me laugh…and laugh…and laugh.
The guys day jobs are a wonder in themselves. They include; Hod carrier, hotel waiter, kitchen porter in France, waiter on a cruise ship, bouncer, dosser, market stall on Venice Beach California, cab driver in South-Central L.A. (home of the infamous Bloods & Crips), cab driver in England (both of which are the subject of his book ‘Cab Driver,’ which can be found on Amazon Kindle). He spent five years on the road in America, working with a travelling sales crew, North in the summer, South in the winter, and 1000 other jobs. He’s also worked in construction management for the past 15 years.
Now before I go any further I want to make it clear that Karl’s views are Karl’s views and I don’t necessarily share them. I think it’s fair to point out that this blog is not for the faint hearted or the easily offended. It appears to take a light hearted swipe at many aspects of the Bible, and, as with Karl’s books, is likely to polarise views. Look away now if this does not sit comfortably with you.
So off you go, Karl. Entertain whoever is left…
The Trouble With The Bible, a blog from Karl Wiggins
Yo Christians, help me out here. I’m aware that orthodox, conservative Christians oppose same-sex marriage, and (correct me if I’m wrong) I think that’s because of the words of Leviticus 18:22 “You shall not lie with a male as with a woman; it is an abomination,” and I think it’s Romans 1:27 “Men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error.” So I get that. Even David Cameron has stated that he wouldn’t attempt to redefine marriage
And, as I understand it, marriage in the bible is only discussed as between a male and a female. Genesis 2:24 “Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.” Corinthians 7:2 “But because of the temptation to sexual immorality, each man should have his own wife and each woman her own husband.” Ephesians 5:23-24 “ For the husband is the head of the wife even as is the head of the church, his body, and is himself its Saviour. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit in everything to their husbands.”
Wow! How about that? I’ve just called Sue in to show her what I’ve found; “Wives should submit in everything to their husbands.”
Actually that didn’t go down very well at all. In fact, she was none too impressed.
Anyway, the church opposes same-sex marriage. I mean, God made a woman out of Adam’s rib, didn’t he? Not another bloke!
Having said that though, I’m still trying to get my head around it all. You might as well oppose interracial marriages as well. I know you’re not supposed to plough with an ox and a donkey yoked together, but what about interracial marriage? What does the bible say about that? Well Leviticus 19:19 “Keep my decrees. Do not mate different kinds of animals. Do not plant your field with two kinds of seed. Do not wear clothing woven of two kinds of material.” Hmmm, getting close there. Is this a biblical metaphor for marriage between people of other nations or are they just rabbiting on about agriculture?
But what about Ezra 10:2 “We have been unfaithful to our God by marrying foreign women from the peoples around us.” And this goes on. It seems there were a stack of people who had sinned by marrying foreign women including descendants of priests, rock musicians, bouncers and who knows who else? Ezra 10:44 “All these had married foreign women, and some of them had children by these wives.”
So this is where I need some help. If I’m to be a good Christian I also need advice concerning other elements of God’s law;
Leviticus 6:3-6 says that if I find something which is lost and lieth concerning it then I’ve got to offer a ram without blemish to the priest. Well, when I was about 17 or 18 I was walking past one of those Afro-Caribbean Nightclubs in Wembley with my mate, Tony. The club mainly catered to patrons from nearby Chalkhill Estate, where Tony lived.
Outside the club on the pavement were two suitcases. Just sitting there. Tony and I were a bit pissed and thought to ourselves, “Bloody hell! It’s got to be money from a bank robbery or something.” This is absolutely true. So we had one of the cases away, believing it to be stuffed with banknotes. We ducked down an alley and opened it, convinced we’d be set up for life. I guess we really were pissed because all it contained was some geezer’s clothes. He’d probably just got off the boat from Trinidad or Tobago and had aimed himself in the direction of Wembley, poor bastard. Now he’s lost half his clothes.
Anyway that was a long time ago and although the suitcase wasn’t exactly lost I did find it. And although I didn’t exactly lieth about it I thought I’d better make amends. So I drove out to the country and found a herd of sheep. I’d read up on it and learned that buck goats acquire a unique and strong odour when they’re rutting, although rams don’t, but that wasn’t really much help because by the time I got there no one was doing any rutting at all. However, there was one of them with horns and a dark face, so I figured he’d do. He put up a bit of a struggle but I managed to get him in the back of the car and drove around until I came to a church. I told the vicar about finding the suitcase full of clothes outside the Afro-Caribbean club in Wembley and said I’d brought along this ram to make amends. He told me to fuck off!
So now what am I supposed to do with it? I’ve stuck it in the back garden for the time being but Sue’s getting well pissed off with it. It keeps chewing all the clean washing.
Anyway, you can see I’m making an effort to be a good Christian.
Now, I’m having a little trouble with this one. Leviticus 11:1-6 “And the LORD spake unto Moses and to Aaron, saying unto them, Speak unto the children of Israel, saying, These are the beasts which ye shall eat among all the beasts that are on the earth. Whatsoever parteth the hoof, and is clovenfooted, and cheweth the cud, among the beasts, that shall ye eat. Nevertheless these shall ye not eat of them that chew the cud, or of them that divide the hoof: as the camel, because he cheweth the cud, but divideth not the hoof; he is unclean unto you. And the coney, because he cheweth the cud, but divideth not the hoof; he is unclean unto you. And the hare, because he cheweth the cud, but divideth not the hoof; he is unclean unto you. And the swine, though he divide the hoof, and be clovenfooted, yet he cheweth not the cud; he is unclean to you. Of their flesh shall ye not eat, and their carcase shall ye not touch; they are unclean to you.”
Can you see my problem here? It just goes on and on and on for another 41 verses, talking about fowls that creepeth and locusts and camel toes and vultures and ravens and none of it makes any sense to me whatsoever. What’s a coney by the way? And if I order a lamb donor kebab does a lamb parteth the hoof or cheweth the cud? And supposing they’ve stuck horsemeat in there? Help me out here?
Now Leviticus 18 says that if anyone has sex with their uncle’s wife they’re to be cut off from their people. Well, there’s this bloke down the pub who shagged his aunty. He said she was gagging for it. He was a bit pissed, she was a bit pissed and one thing led to another, you know how it is. But we’ve now got to cut him off from all his people. Which people? His family? Or everyone in England?
Now Leviticus 19:20 says “If a man lies sexually with a woman who is a slave, assigned to another man and not yet ransomed or given her freedom, a distinction shall be made. They shall not be put to death, because she was not free.” Okay, now this bloke down the pub, same bloke actually, went over to Germany to see Arsenal play Bayern Munich and while he was there went with this prostitute in the Frankfurter Ring who he later suspected might have been a victim of sex slave trafficking. We’re not supposed to put him to death, I get that. But what kind of punishment does the bible say we can give him?
Revelations 20:15 says that anyone whose name is not found written in the book of life is to be cast into a lake of fire. This bloke down the pub, I don’t think his name is likely to be written in any book of life, do you? But do we really have to cast him into a lake of fire? Can’t we just flick matches at him in the pub or burn him with cigarettes. Won’t that do?
You see, as I understand it, there are a lot of people I’ve got to burn with fire. Back to Leviticus, “If a man takes a wife and her mother, it is wickedness: they shall be burnt with fire, both he and they.” You see this bloke down the pub, different bloke actually but one of his mates all the same, says he quite fancies his mother-in-law. Well if he ‘takes’ her, we’ve got to burn him as well, yeah? But you see, I’m wondering if there’s any leeway in this. I do have a day job, you know, and if this keeps up I’m simply going to be too busy going around burning people.
I’m also troubled by Leviticus 19:27 (and I swear this is the last time I’ll mention the book of the Levites) because it tells me I’m not to round off the side growth of my head. And I guess I’m okay with that because I haven’t got any side growth, but what really concerns me is Leviticus 19:28 “Do not mark your skin with tattoos.” I’ve got four tattoos, so I’m in a bit of a spot here, aren’t I? Does that mean my name has been stricken out of the book of life?
I’m also told that I’m not to go around spreading slander, which I do all the time on Facebook. But I don’t know what punishment I’m to expect for this. Could I perhaps rend my clothes and fall on my face? They’re doing that all the time in the bible. That’d do, wouldn’t it?
In Deuteronomy 13 I read that if someone tries to get me to go and join another religion then my hand shall be the first against him to put him to death. Okay, I don’t mind that so much but afterwards we’ve got to get all the people to stone him to death until he dies. I was thinking this might be best done at half time at a football match. You know, sometimes they have penalty shoot-outs between kids from different schools, well why not get everyone in the crowd to stone this bloke to death one week instead of penalty shootouts? That’d work, wouldn’t it?
I tell you what; most kids football matches take place on a Sunday. So instead of going to church, why don’t we get one of these blokes who’s tried to get us to join another religion – a Jehovah’s Witness or someone – and stone him to death at the half-way line? We could chuck him in one of the goals until the end of the match.
In fact, the more I read I can see there’s a lot of people I’ve got to stone to death. Numbers 15:32-36 says that if a bloke picks up sticks on a Sabbath day, I’ve got to stone him to death. To be truthful, I don’t really know anyone who picks up sticks, on a Sabbath or otherwise, so could I just stone the bloke who collects all the trolleys at Tesco’s? Would he do instead?
Deuteronomy 22:13-21 if a woman’s not a virgin on her wedding night I’ve got to stone her to death also. Well, I hate to admit it, but No-Knickers Nicky who I used to sell Timeshare with wasn’t a virgin on her wedding night, I can assure you of that! So she’s another one!
Witches and Wizards have also got to be stoned to death as well. What’s that bloke’s name who played Harry Potter? I’ll put him on my list. Bastard!
Now Deuteronomy 13:12-16 “If you hear someone in one of your cities, which the Lord your God gives you to dwell in, saying, ‘Corrupt men have gone out from among you and enticed the inhabitants of their city, saying, “Let us go and serve other gods”’—which you have not known— then you shall inquire, search out, and ask diligently. And if it is indeed true and certain that such an abomination was committed among you, you shall surely strike the inhabitants of that city with the edge of the sword, utterly destroying it, all that is in it and its livestock—with the edge of the sword. And you shall gather all it’s plunder into the middle of the street, and completely burn with fire the city and all its plunder, for the Lord your God. It shall be a heap forever.”
That’s a bit of a tall order, isn’t it? Even for someone who’s pretty keen, like me? I’m willing to give it a go but say Watford’s playing away at Derby and as I get off the train I hear that someone’s been saying, “Let us go and serve other Gods.” Bloody hell! I’ve got to strike all the inhabitants of Derby with the edge of my sword, utterly destroy the city and all it’s livestock, gather all the plunder in the middle of the street and completely burn the whole city. Do you think I could watch the game first?
Here’s another one I’m puzzling over. Deuteronomy 20:13-18 “If any man take a wife, and go in unto her, and hate her and give occasions of speech against her then the damsel’s father shallsay unto the elders, “I gave my daughter unto this man to wife, and he hateth her,” then the elders of that city shall take that man and chastise him.” What man? The bloke who hateth his wife or her father? I’m asking this because there’s a bloke at work, Ryan, who hateth his wife (although apparently when they first got married he did go it unto her) and I don’t know whether to chastise him or his father-in-law.
Ryan also tends to curse and blaspheme a lot, so I think it’s probably best if I chastise him. What do you think?
Deuteronomy 21:18-21 “If you have a stubborn and rebellious son, who is a glutton and a drunkard, then you and the other men in your neighbourhood shall stone him with stones that he dies.” Blimey! They’ll be no teenagers left in my area! Do you think it would be a good idea if I went around smiting them all straight away?
Deuteronomy 25:11-12 “If two men fight and the wife of one grabs the ‘secrets’ of the other, then thou shalt cut off her hand and thine eye shall not pity her.” Now wait a minute here, let me get this straight. Two blokes are having a row in the pub car-park. One of the wives steams out of the pub, jumps on the other bloke and grabs his ‘secrets,’ and we’re supposed to cut her hand off.
And besides that, who’s going to do it? Not me, I’m telling you. I’m up for smiting people and throwing them in lakes of fire and burning cities and stoning people to death and whatever else it takes to be a good Christian, but if this bird’s waded into the fight by grabbing the other fellow’s ‘secrets’ then I’m going nowhere near her! Can’t we get a more experienced Christian to do that?
And then you’ve got the problem of the poor bloke who’s had his nuts grabbed hold of by his enemy’s wife. Deuteronomy 1 “A man whose testicles are crushed or whose penis is cut off may never join the assembly of the Lord.” So not only has he had his bollocks squeezed, but he’s never allowed to go to church again!
Actually, I think there are a lot of people who aren’t allowed in church. They’re all mentioned in Leviticus 21:18-20 and include a hunchback, a dwarf, someone with an eye defect (I wear glasses to read) and again, anyone with damaged testicles. Hmmm, I can see the church doesn’t like people who’ve had their gonads grabbed.
Just a couple more queries then I’m done for now. I know I promised not to mention Leviticus again, but this is the book that’s giving me the most problems. Leviticus 25:44 says “You may acquire male and female slaves from the pagan nations that are around you.” I’ve just had an argument about this with Sue. She’s telling me not to be so bloody stupid, but why can’t I acquire a slave from Scotland? They’re a pagan nation, aren’t they? I wouldn’t want to own any Welsh slaves, I mean, you wouldn’t would you? What would the neighbours think?
Sue’s also giving me another problem. You see I’ve been offering up burnt offerings to the Lord. I’m pretty sure I’ve been doing it correctly as in Leviticus 1:8-10. I’ve been arranging the head and the suet over the wood, I’ve been washing the legs and entrails with water and I’ve been offering “up in smoke all of it,” as the aroma is pleasing to the Lord. The trouble is the aroma’s not pleasing to Sue, and she keeps going on and on about it. She was the same when I was brewing my own beer, and had to boil the hops in the bath.
Leviticus 15:19-22 is giving me some difficulty too. “When a woman has a discharge, if her discharge in her body is blood, she shall continue in her menstrual impurity for seven days; and whoever touches her shall be unclean,” “Whoever touches any thing on which she sits shall wash his clothes and bathe in water and be unclean until evening.” My problem here is that I don’t really know if a woman’s in her period of menstrual impurity or not? The only way is to ask them, but if I note a lady giving her seat up on the train home at night, and I want to jump in there, they seem to take offence at me asking if they’re menstrually impure! I’ve tried explaining that I’m not allowed to touch anything on which she’s sat but it hasn’t gone down too well.
The last thing that’s troubling me is although same-sex marriage is obviously an abomination so are haughty Eyes (Proverbs 6:16), sexual immorality, jealousy, drunkenness, orgies (Galatians 5:19-21 – I know, I couldn’t believe it myself, surely not orgies), your wife putting on your jumper if she’s cold (Deuteronomy 22:5), lying with an animal (Leviticus 18:23), arrogance (Proverbs 16:5), turning your ear away from hearing the law (Proverbs 28:9), scoffing (Proverbs 24:9 – although I don’t know whether that’s scoffing at rival football supporters or scoffing your sandwiches down at lunchtime), lighting joss-sticks (Isaiah 1:13), uncovering the nakedness of your father (Leviticus 18:6), lying sexually with your neighbour’s wife (Leviticus 18:20), uncovering a woman’s nakedness while her sister is still alive (Leviticus 18:18 – I’m having a little difficulty with this one), pursuing unnatural desire (Jude 1:7-8 – do you think that include MILFs? I mean, I’m only asking), writing the name ‘Mystery’ on a prostitute’s forehead (Revelations 17:5) and eating shellfish (Leviticus 11:10).
My question is that all of these are abominations, they’re all vile and detestable, but are they all as bad as each other? Is there a kind of ‘Hierarchy of Abomination’? Is eating shellfish and scoffing at rival football supporters as bad as, say, lighting joss sticks? Obviously same-sex marriage is at the top of the ‘Abomination Hierarchy’ but what else is up there with it? Your wife wearing your jumper if it’s cold? Uncovering your father’s nakedness? Having haughty eyes? Surely not pursuing unnatural desires towards MILFs?
It’s not as easy as it seems, being a Christian, is it? But I’m doing the best I can. I’m rending my clothes and falling on my face, I’m smiting every same-sex couple I can find, I’m preparing burnt offerings by killing them on the north side of the barbeque (our garden is North-facing, you see), washing the intestines and sprinkling blood all over the lawn, but I just can’t get past the last two obstacles; 1) my tattoos and 2) the fact that I’m third generation bastard. Deuteronomy 23:2 “A bastard shall not enter into the congregation of the LORD; even to his tenth generation.” And that includes me.
I need some help here!
Wow, I think we all do, Karl. Many thanks for enlightening us on a myriad of topics from the Bible, none of which will ever be viewed quite the same again.