Monthly Archives: April 2013

Man charged in brother’s death; ‘Honor killing’; Slaying allegedly tied to insult made 23 years ago

Source: WikiIslam

Name of Victim:  Isa M. Mehri

Age:  60

Date of Incidence:  Oct. 26, 2009

Location: USA

Method of killing or religious violence:  Beaten with a pipe then strangled to death with a rope

Perpetrator:  Brother

Reason for Violence:  Made an insulting remark about his brother’s wife

Read More:  Man charged in brother’s death; ‘Honor killing’; Slaying allegedly tied to insult made 23 years ago

According to the Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office, Mahdi M. Matin, 61, was engaged to be married 23 years ago when his younger brother, Isa M. Mehri, 60, said “something to Matin that was very offensive and which caused him not to marry the woman,” according to a document of probable cause filed in the case.

Matin had been “tortured” ever since by what his brother said, according to the document. Matin was at his brother’s home in the 19100 block of 18th Avenue West in Lynnwood on Oct. 26 when the younger brother apparently repeated the insult, the document alleges.

“This made Matin mad and he went out in the rear yard of the residence and retrieved a pipe,” according to the document of probable cause.

With the pipe in hand, Matin asked his brother to repeat the “offensive remark,” police said. Mehri repeated the remark and Matin struck him on the head, the document alleges.

Matin told police his brother then threatened to shoot him and turned in the direction of his bedroom, so Matin hit his brother on the head again and dragged him into the backyard. Matin then strangled Mehri with a rope, the document alleges.

Matin, who followed his brother to the U.S. from Afghanistan in 1985, covered Mehri’s body with a tarp and left to spend the night at a hotel, the document said.

He returned the next day, Oct. 27, to wash the body and clean the blood from the house, according to the document.

He contemplated telling his sister but didn’t want her to see the blood, according to the document. So he left and spent another night at the hotel, where he thought about killing himself, according to the court document.

Last Wednesday morning, he called police to report what he described as an “honor killing,” according to the document.

 

Coon Rapids man accused of killing stepdaughter in Michigan for leaving home, not following Islam

Source: WikiIslam

Name of Victim:   Jessica Mokdad

Age: 20

Date of Incidence:  April 30, 2011

Location: USA

Method of killing or religious violence:  Shot to death

 Perpetrator: Stepfather

Reason for Violence:  Left her home and was not following Islam

Read More: A Twin Cities man is accused of killing his 20-year-old stepdaughter in Michigan because she left home and wasn’t following Islam, police said Tuesday.

Rahim Alfetlawi, 45, of Coon Rapids, was being held without bond Tuesday in the Macomb County Jail after being charged with first-degree murder in the death of Jessica Mokdad on Saturday at her grandmother’s home in the Detroit suburb of Warren.
. . .
Torey said Alfetlawi told police the gun discharged accidentally when he pulled it out, but police believe he intentionally shot Mokdad in the head.

Torey said Mokdad had left her mother and stepfather to live with her father near Flint in Grand Blanc because she did not like their rules.

“He’s a strict Muslim, she was more Americanized,” Torey said.

 

‘Honor beating’ connected to entire family, parents and sibling arrested

Source: WikiIslam

Name of Victim:  Aiya Farhan

Age: 19

Date of Incidence:  February, 2012

Location: USA

Method of killing or religious violence:  Beaten & tied to a bed

 Perpetrator: Family

Reason for Violence: Talking to a boy.

Read More:  PD: ‘Honor beating’ now connected to entire family, parents and sibling arrested

An Iraqi mother accused of beating her 19-year-old daughter for talking to a boy is back behind bars, along with her husband and another daughter.

Phoenix police told ABC15 that the victim claims her parents and her younger sister beat her, and then tied her to a bed in their home.

The mother, Yursa Farhan, who sat down with ABC15 on Saturday, admitted to hitting her daughter, Aiya, who lied to her and used foul language, but denies ever beating her as police allege.

“She was talking to a boy and our culture says no boyfriends,” Farhan said. “We have to respect our culture.”

Farhan was released from jail last week, but was re-arrested on Wednesday.

Investigators said Fahan also burned Aiya with a hot spoon as punishment back in November because the teenager refused to marry a 38-year-old man.

Farhan’s husband, Mohammed Altameemi, and their 18-year-old daughter, Tabarak Altameemi, were arrested in connection with the most recent incident.

Aiya defended her mother on Saturday to ABC15 saying that she understood why her mother hit her, and said that she agreed with her discipline.

PD: ‘Honor beating’ now connected to entire family, parents and sibling arrested
Adam Slinger & Angie Holdsworth, ABC15, February 16, 2012

17 Year Old Burned and Abused By Parents

Source: WikiIslam

Name of Victim: Not released (female)

Age: 17

Date of Incidence: March 20, 2013

Location: USA

Method of killing or religious violence: Burned, verbally & mentally abused

Perpetrator: Mother, father

Reason for Violence: Refused to marry her cousin and talking to a boy online

Read More: Child Abuse Charges for Hollywood Mother Who Burned Teen Daughter Over Arranged Marriage: Cops

A South Florida mother who used a knife to burn her teen daughter after the girl resisted her parents’ wishes to marry her cousin in an arranged marriage is facing child abuse charges, Hollywood Police said Tuesday.

Sahar Thabit, 35, was arrested Friday and is facing three counts of child abuse on her 17-year-old daughter, according to a Hollywood Police arrest affidavit.

According to the affidavit, the abuse began in early January when Thabit used a stove to heat up the metal on the knife and burn her daughter’s arm three times, twice on her left forearm and once on her upper right arm.
. . .
The burns caused permanent disfigurement, the report noted.

A friend of the girl reported the abuse to a school administrator, who later called police, the affidavit said.

According to the friend, the teen said her parents became upset because she didn’t want to marry her cousin, but wanted to marry a boy in Yemen she had met on the Internet, the affidavit said.

The daughter later told police that she had been talking to the boy in Yemen through the Internet, even though it’s not allowed in the family’s religion.

The girl’s friend also said the parents verbally and mentally abused their daughter calling her a whore and slut, the affidavit said. The friend also said the girl had attempted suicide over the incident, the affidavit said.

When the victim’s father was questioned by detectives, he claimed she had been burned by a stove until it was pointed out that the burns were in three different areas, the affidavit said. The father then asked for an attorney, the affidavit said.

The girl’s grandfather gave the same explanation Tuesday, saying, “She burned herself in the stove.”

After interviewing witnesses and the victim, police determined Thabit had placed the knife on her daughter’s arms, the affidavit said.

Detectives weren’t able to interview Thabit because she only speaks Arabic, the affidavit said. She was arrested and later released on bond, and it’s unknown whether she has an attorney.

The girl’s father told NBC 6 over the phone that the family is going through difficult times with the allegations and said he had no comment.

Lenore Walker, a psychology professor at Nova Southeastern University, said the alleged abuse in the case is similar to an honor killing.

”The rationale is that you’re shaming your family by getting involved with a boy or a man who is unacceptable for whatever reason. In this particular case, it’s because she was promised to another man and so she talked on the Internet, not even face to face,” Walker said.

Offenders in the Church: Who they are and how do they operate?

The following video is a ‘must see’ for all pastors, church leaders and congregants of all denominations. You can visit GRACE on Facebook or visit their website.

What is GRACE?

GRACE is a non-profit organization made up of highly trained and experienced multi-disciplinary professionals who seek to educate and empower the Christian community to identify, confront and respond to the sin of child abuse.

[vimeo http://www.vimeo.com/58304996 w=500&h=281]

Offenders in the Church: Who are they and how do they operate? from GRACE on Vimeo.

THE OUTLINE FOR THIS VIDEO:

The Prevalence of Child Abuse in the United States

  • Child sexual abuse is 75x more common than pediatric cancer.
  • One child molester per square mile in the United States– Dept. of Justice
  • 38% of all girls and between 9%-16% of boys will be sexually abused by their 18th birthday. (With 75 million children in the United states, this translates to almost 15 million children who will be sexually victimized over the next 18 years!!)
  • 40% of children between 10-17 have been sexually solicited online.

The Prevalence of Child Abuse inside the American Church

  • Child abuse allegations against American churches average 70 per week. (Christian Ministry Resources. ** This number could be much higher due to under-reporting.)
  • 1% of surveyed churches reported abuse allegations annually!
  • Volunteers are more likely than paid staff to be abusers.

– 42% were volunteers
– 25% were paid staff
– 25% were other children

The ability of the Christian community to prevent child abuse has been hindered by inadequate information and training. The Church must learn to:

– Prevent Abuse
– Recognize Abuse
– Report Abuse
– Respond to Abuse

Those who harm children are often attracted to the Church environment.

“I considered church people easy to fool. . . they have a trust that comes from being Christians. They tend to be better folks all around and seem to want to believe in the good that exists in people. I think they want to believe in people. And because of that, you can easily convince, with or without convincing words.”

— Imprisoned Predator

Prevention Begins with Education on Child Sexual Abuse: General Observations

  • Abuse is seldom isolated. The average child molester victimizes between 50 and 150 children before being caught.

“I created my first victim when I was 13, a female victim. Sally was 6 and I was 13, I created my first male victim when I was 15, and I have been victimizing male children virtually nonstop until my incarceration.

Question:  How old are you now?
Answer: I am 33 now, and I have been incarcerated for three years.
Question:  How many total victims did you have?
Answer:  I have eleven male rape victims, one female rape victim, and I have approximately 1250 male molestation victims, and I say approximately because I really don’t know.

— Predator”

The “Double Life”

“I lived a double life . . . I would do kind and generous things for people. I would give families money that did not have any money and that was not from the church treasury. It was from my own bank accounts. I would support them in all the ways I could. Talk to them and encourage them. I would go to nursing homes and talk and pray with the elderly. I would do community service projects including picking up garbage and mowing lawns for elderly and handicapped people. . . go grocery shopping for them.”

— Imprisoned pedophile of admittedly over 95 victims and the youngest deacon in his church.

“I want to describe a child molester I know very well. This man was raised by devout Christian parents and as a child he rarely missed church. Even after he became an adult, he was faithful as a church member. he was a straight A student in high school and college. he as been married and has a child of his own. He coached little league baseball and was a choir director at his church. He never used illegal drugs and never had a drink of alcohol. He was considered the clean cut, all American boy. Everyone seemed to like him and he often volunteered in numerous civic community functions. He had a well-paying career and was considered “well to do” in society. But from the age of 13 years old, this boy sexually molested little boys. He never victimized a stranger. . . all of his victims were “friends”. . . I know this child molester very well because he is me!”

— Convicted child molester

Do we know any persons like these??? The fact is that a child abuser cannot be detected by his/her looks, his/her lifestyle, or his/her status in the community or church.

LIKEABILITY VERSUS TRUSTWORTHINESS

Impact of Likeability

  • Victims Protect Them (the abuser)
  • Parents Refuse to Believe (the Victim)
  • Authorities Discount (the victim’s story)
  • Communities Support Them (the abuser)
  • Juries Acquit Them (the abuser)

“Niceness is a decision. . . not a character trait” — DeBecker, 1997

Predators often prey on trusting and vulnerable young people.

Question: At church, you did not molest all the children. . . how would you choose?

Answer: First of all, you start the grooming process from day one. . . the children you are interested in. . . You find a child you might be attracted to. . . for me, it might be nobody fat.  It had to be a you know, nice-looking child. You maybe look at a kid that doesn’t have a father image at home. You know, you start deducting. . . this kid may not have a father, or a father that cares about him. . . say you have a group of 25 kids, you might find 9 that are appealing. . . then you start looking at their family backgrounds. . . then you find out which ones are most accessible. Then eventually, you get it down to the one you think is the easiest target, and that’s the one you choose to abuse.

– Imprisoned Pedophile

Predators will prey on children who few people will believe if they were to disclose the abuse.

“Persons who may be compulsive pedophiles, for instance, may obey the law in other ways, may be responsible in their work, may have concern for other persons.” – Berlin, quoted in Knopp, 1984, p.9

We must be vigilant in protecting ALL the children in our churches.

Child molesters are very professional at what they do, and they do a good job at it.

— Convicted child molester

Child Sexual Abuse within the Church – The 5 Exploitations

Exploitation of “Religious Cover”

  • “Religious Cover” is the outward demonstration of religious practices or doctrine that covers over more sinister intentions and behaviors.
  • Used to gain access and trust of children and their families (eg. youth workers, pastors, teachers, and coaches.)
  • Hard core offenders maintaining significant involvement with religious institutions “had more sexual offense convictions, more victims, and younger victims.” Eshurys & Smallbone, Religious Affiliations Among Adult Sexual Offenders (2006)

Exploitation of FAITH ISSUES

Issues of faith are often distorted & manipulated to coerce victims in submitting to abuse and to be quiet about it:

  • Defining “sin” to justify (Ex. This is the expression of God ordained love.)
  • Defining “sin” to silence. (Ex. You should be ashamed of your sin.)
  • Distancing from God. (Ex. Because of your sin, God doesn’t care about you, but I do.)

Can you think of others?

The victim’s own analysis of religious doctrine may result in confusion and silence.

Seven year old: “Am I still a virgin in God’s eyes?” “God is going to punish me for this secret sin.”

Exploitation of Power:

  • Submission to authority. From the earliest age, children are taught to “respect and obey their elders.”
  • Authoritarian Leadership – Faith leaders often distort their role & authority by claiming to speak for God.

– no accountability
– Unresponsive to concerns raised regarding abuse.
– Adults are valued more than children.
– Victims are seen as “sinful” and trouble-makers and are often ostracized.

These environments are ripe for abuse.

Exploitation of NEEDS:

Churches are always in need.

  • How many churches can you think of that are not in need of volunteers to help out with our children and young people? i.e. . . Nursery, youth group.
  • Child molesters will always use this need to their advantage in gaining access to our children.
  • Example: Predator moves into an area of need (choir director).

Church pews are filled with people in need.

Needy children and/or adults are magnets for those who sexually victimize children.

Exploitation of TRUST:

Christians usually foster a very trusting environment.

  • “Church Family”
  • Mission Field where the children referred to every adult as “Uncle” or “Aunt.”
  • Dropping off child in the nursery.
  • Can you think of other examples??

Children are taught to trust God. Clergy and adults should be “trusted” since they are “God’s representatives on earth.”

Eddie [pastor] always said that God had chosen me for something special. I guess I really wanted to believe that. Doesn’t every kid want to think they’re special? Besides, who was I to question a man of God? It wasn’t my place. My role was to be submissive.

– C. Brown (sexually molested by her pastor)

An Open Letter to Linda Hyles Murphrey

From the Author:

This open letter to Linda Hyles Murphrey was written by Jo McGuire and signed by those survivors of religious abuse that felt the need to support and thank Linda for her efforts in setting things right, by revealing the truth about her Father, Jack Hyles. Many of these victims are part of the Do Right Hyles Group on Facebook and understand that Linda has taken a very brave stand against religious abuse.  They have kindly asked me to share this letter with everyone.  If you would like to show Linda your support too, simply leave her a comment at the end of the letter.

Linda Hyles Murphrey currently has her own website, http://www.lindamurphrey.com, where she helps victims of spiritual and emotional abuse heal from their trauma. Linda is also currently writing her memoirs and is putting a chapter a month about her story on her website. Please purchase your copies as she writes them. They are excellent and very helpful to those who have been abused in any manner in an abusive church or religion.

Linda Murphrey  will also be a guest on Stacy Harp’s radio show on Active Christian Media this Thursday, April 25 at 12 pm PST, 2 pm CST. Topic will be “Healing from Religious Abuse.” You can join Linda here:   http://www.blogtalkradio.com/acmedia
THE LETTER TO LINDA MURPHREY

Dearest Linda:

You so graciously wrote an open letter that offered an apology to those of us who suffered beneath the weight of the massive First Baptist Church of Hammond and its impact upon our lives. Through sheer courage that is unthinkable, you have taken a stand for truth and offered hope to thousands who have yearned for acknowledgement of the abuses and crimes against them. You have cracked open the sealed vault containing lies, shame, deceit, false guilt and condemnation … allowing the voices that were bound in silence to break free and join your truth as an ever growing tidal wave of freedom, healing and peace. Grateful does not begin to describe how we feel. Inspired, overwhelmed, validated, fearless, freed, victorious, awakened, empowered, renewed ….. these are just a few of the emotions that resonate within our hearts as we hear your truth.

In this, you have taken enormous risk upon yourself and experienced the harsh realities of those still blinded who lash out at you to protect their own misguided illusions out of fear.  Many of us speak our truth in the comfortable anonymity of our homes, behind our keyboards, in a virtual world, but you stand publicly exposed as a target for those who need to protect their Jericho, as it were. The panic of feeling the walls come down around the fortress of their man made religion causes the fierce attack to land on your shoulders and here is where we, the Survivors, write an open letter to you:

For every small-minded person that lashes out at you, hundreds more stand shoulder to shoulder with you, Linda. We grow daily in numbers and in strength of spirit to rise up and say, “No more!” While there is yet work to be done and generations of false teaching to be undone, we are willing to do the work it takes to get healthy, to stand strong and to right the wrongs of the past. In doing so, we support you and surround you in love. You are on no pedestal; we appreciate and value you too much to revisit the former ways. We are simply partners in this journey, each sharing a common path, lighting the way for thousands more to follow as they slip free of the bonds that enslave them to fear.

And … we want to apologize to you for those who have hurt you so deeply and senselessly. We pour out our heartfelt regret and express our sorrow for the scars and wounds you bear in your tender heart. You did not deserve to be set apart, isolated, pointed at and criticized or attacked. You deserved better and on behalf of any of those who could have made that happen for you, whether they are our grandparents, fathers and mothers, brothers and sisters, or we ourselves, you were failed by those who should have protected you, cherished you, valued you, embraced you, and should have called you Beloved.

Survivors of this cult are a wounded people. While some have learned to walk in love and breathe grace, we still include a great many who know no other way but to destructively point out the differences in others as threats. For so long, this is all we have known, a culture of creating levels of holiness, measured by degrees of rules and standard keeping. Therefore as former hostages, we can be divisive, tediously insensitive and sadly, even hateful. We are infected with it. However, we will persist in growing up and learning new ways of being. We will deprogram from the intolerance and the need-to-be-right and we will increase in our ability to love radically. We will do the work to get healthy emotionally, mentally and spiritually. And some day, Linda, we will have – not many voices – but one resounding, over-powering drum beat that rejoices in our beautiful individuality and more importantly the loving God who made us each as we are and delights in us as His precious Children. With that identity, with that power … we will create change that can only come from the goodness within us, rather than the dark blots of our past.

Though it may feel like this story has gone on for too long, we are creating new chapters daily and living a new beginning … together.

Thank you, Linda, for that moment in time when you decided walk away and break free, and for that moment in time when you decided to be brave and to speak. For all the moments in-between.

And for every moment after.

May our moments of courage reflect yours.

Survivors & Supporters

Jo McGuire (Author)

Sarah Antonovich

Rhonda Stahlman Bell

Sarah Hammer Bennett

Mark Bewley

Nancy Bicknell

Amy Cortes

Cindy Dutton

Cindy Everett

Linda M. Fossen

Emily Paradis Garate

Voyle Glover

Laura Grant

Katy Hardy

Joanne Loveless Hargraves

Michelle Fishback Hendrickson

Evelyn Huckaby

Cheryl Tripam Huddleston

Georgia Graham Ivey
Matthew Ivey

Carolyn Gail McPherson Johnson

Wynette Kniesz

Frank LaFerriere

Jeremy Lape

Colleen Gentry Maxey

Cynthia McClaskey

Phyllis Moffit

Amy Moran

Jared and Jennifer Munson

Rebecca Norlin

Julie Peiter Oliver

Frank Owens

My husband and I read your first chapter together and it was such an encouragement to us.

–Nancy Bicknell

Dear Linda, it is such an honor to stand with you survivor to survivor. Like you, I suffered in silence for decades and what a glorious day it was when I finally shattered my silence. I know the courage that it took and the fear that you had to overcome to speak your truth. Please don’t be discouraged by those who try to discredit you. There is an army of us who believe you and stand with you. Together, we survivors will tear down the walls that have protected our abusers and kept us living in terror and fear. I am proud of you and am cheering you on all the way!

–Linda M. Fossen

I remember realizing that my jaw was agape while I was watching your TED talk. Waves of realization washed over me as I saw Jack Hyles’ daughter in pants and heard her speak of my childhood as a cult experience.

I recalled being so proud of my membership in your Blue Denim and Lace singing group, when I was in Jr. High, and wondering why you always seemed rather sullen. No wonder!

So, dear Linda, thank you for your apology, but your effort in speaking the truth has resulted in the freeing of so many spiritual prisoners and that more than evens the scale. Thank you and God bless you.

–Emily Paradis Garate

I am very pleased that you have bared your very soul, Linda!      – Carolyn Gail McPherson Johnson

Hugs!     –Amy Moran

Many will remember the book written by Linda’s dad entitled Mercy and Truth. Linda, you epitomize true mercy and truth in your letter and I’m proud of you.                       –Carla Robertson

I have the highest respect and admiration for you! You are a strong lady and an inspiration to many!                                                                                                                –Julie Smith Sherman

Linda, words fail to describe the depth and breadth of meaning and validation I have found in your TEDx talk, your open letter, and your book. Thank you for grasping your twenty seconds of courage. Thank you for your willingness to stand up and speak out. Thank you for valuing and validating me and countless other survivors through your brave actions and words. You will never fully know the magnitude of strength and courage your words have fostered and will continue to nurture for decades to come. You are truly a lifeline of hope, help, and healing to me and so many others. I thank you, I applaud you, and I stand with you.                           –Sherri Munger-Tyler Y

I love you, Linda Murphrey. You are a breath of fresh air. A lovely flower that blossomed out of fertile manure.                                                                                                           -Monica Weimer

Thank you for your courage, support, and help in healing, Linda. I was in a JH-worshiping church and am so thankful to be free from twelve years of the closest thing to hell I’ll ever experience. I love your book, your empathy, and your openness to the cult influence and the hope for healing.

–Amy Whitford Y

Sex Bias Influences Translators – Part 3 – The Conclusion of the Matter!

Sex Bias Influences Translators – Part 3

gender bias(See: Part 1 and Part 2 here.)

Understanding the “subtil” changes in translation regarding women, is of the utmost importance for women everywhere. In order to truly understand the scriptures and God’s will for women, we MUST endeavor to learn the TRUTH. If we do not, we will forever be ‘second-class’ citizens of the world. This was never God’s plan for us. This is why I have been covering this topic on sex bias and how it influenced the translators. This is why I spend all my time revealing the corruptions in translation of scripture on this blog through the words of known historians and scholars.  The countless articles I have written here, expose the LIES in translation that have affected every aspect of life for women across the globe.  Scholars the world over have known, for centuries, the changes in translation affecting women. But “religious” MEN have made sure to keep the many scholars and their findings, silenced.  Women and men everywhere need to open their eyes to the fact that women of the world, as a result of mistranslation, have been relegated to a state of servitude that has brought about the abuse of women worldwide throughout history. This said, let’s look at some more mistranslations that have been used as weapons against women everywhere.

Words in the Hebrew language are more difficult to set forth, to those that do not understand the language, because of the great variety of uses to which a word can be put. The same form may do duty as a noun, verb, and adjective, an adverb and even a preposition. For instance, the Hebrew word cha-yil, which occurs 242 times in the Old Testament, is translated:

  • “army” and “war” 58 times;
  • “host” and “forces” 43 times;
  • “might” or “power” 16 times;
  • “goods,” “riches,” “substance” and “wealth” in all, 31 times;
  • “band of soldiers,” “band of men,” “company” and “train” once each;
  • “activity” once;
  • “valour” 28 times;
  • “strength” 11 times.

The above are all noun forms. However, the word is often translated as an adjective or adverb too. It is translated:

  • “valiant” and “valiantly” 35 times;
  • “strong” 6 times;
  • “able” 4 times;’
  • “worthily” once and “worthy” once.

These are the complete lists of the various renderings of this word except for four instances in which the word is used in describing a woman. Please review the lists above and get the usage of the word clearly in your mind before proceeding further.

Now, let’s look at the last four of the remaining instances of this word as relating to women:

Ruth, the Moabitess, was a woman of courage and decision of character. In her loyalty to her dead husband’s mother, she refused to turn back and re-marry in her own land, but forsook her country and kindred to accompany her mother-in-law to a (to her) foreign land, and undertook there, to keep them both from starvation by the labor of her hands. Boaz, who afterwards married her, said to her: “All the city of my people doth know that thou art a woman of cha-yil,” (Ruth 3:11). Now considering the girl’s courage and devotion, how should this word have been translated? You have a list of meanings before you, and are quite competent to form an opinion. How would “thou art an able woman” or “thou art a woman of courage” do? The Septuagint Greek says, “Thou art a woman of power” (dunamis).

But it almost looks as though our English translators took no care, as to the precise language here. The circumstances, when Boaz spoke the words, were peculiar, but not improper in Israel; but man was praising a woman, and “of course” here is a reference to her reputation for chastity, and so it is translated, “thou art a virtuous woman.” But glance over the various meanings given to this word elsewhere. Not once has it reference to any other moral characteristic than that of strength or force. What courage this foreign girl had shown in supporting her mother-in-law!

Now for the next mistranslation of this word, because it relates to woman. The last chapter of Proverbs describes an ideal woman for a wife. The description is a mother’s to her son. It is quite different from the average man’s ideal of woman at her best. But the Bible describes her, in the language of Lemuel’s mother, as a woman whose “price is far above rubies.” Her are some of her striking characteristics:

  • “She is like the merchants’ ships, she bringeth her food from afar.”
  • “She considereth a field and buyeth it.”
  • “She girdeth her loins with strength, and strengtheneth her arms.”
  • “Strength and honour are her clothing.”

Surely this must be a “strong-minded” woman who is praised here!

Three times over, the “strength” of this woman of Proverbs is referred to. Each line of the description speaks of efficiency. She is praised in turn for the general goodness and trustworthiness, energy, efficiency, enterprise, far-sightedness, early-rising, business capacity, gardening, muscular strength, weaving, benevolence, fore-thought, embroidery work, elegant clothes for herself, tailoring for her husband, honor, wisdom, kindness, piety. But, as it happens, no definite reference is made to her purity, or to her faithfulness to her husband in the marriage relation.

Now what one word would best sum up such a character? The precise original expression is the same as in the verse we have quoted from Ruth,– “A woman of cha-yil.” We must suppose that the translators hastily concluded that they knew, without looking closely at the original, what sort of woman a mother ought to recommend to her son for a wife, and so they translated: “Who can find a virtuous woman?” That represents the undoubted sentiments of the translators; but it does not represent the teaching of the original text. “Virtue” is of priceless value to woman, to be sure; but her duty to her husband is not her ONLY duty; all her life cannot be summed up in that ONE moral quality.

“But,” someone will reply, “virtue is often used in the sense of a summing up of all moral characteristics.” That may be; but it would not be so understood by the common folk, in this connection, and the Bible is supposed to be translated for them. The vast majority, reading this verse, would suppose the word “virtue” to refer to the woman’s chastity. The Septuagint translates here (“Tell it not in Gath, publish it not in Askelon,” lest the study of the sacred tongues be prohibited to woman!), “A masculine woman. . . more valuable is she than very costly stones.”

And finally, the description of this ideal woman is summed up in the 29th verse, in the words: “Many daughters have done cha-yil, but thou excellest them all.” “Worthily,” “valiantly,” are the only translations that we have in any other part of the Bible for this word, when used as an adverb. But after the same careless manner, the word is here translated “virtuously.” We suppose there was an instinctive distaste for showing that the Bible praised, in the inspired words of a woman writer, a “strong” woman, for doing “valiantly.”

Now for the fourth instance of the mistranslation of this word: Proverbs 12:4 reads, in the original, “A woman of cha-yil is a crown to her husband,” and there is no doubt that she is here again praised for her strength of character. But the English reads, “A virtuous woman is a crown to her husband.” Doubtless such a woman is a crown to her husband, but women prefer to know what the Bible says, rather than to be merely reminded of a favorite axiom among men. Here again, the Septuagint translates, “masculine.”

“But,” and objector will say ” ‘virtuous’ comes from the Latin word vir, which means ‘man,’ and why is it not the proper word to use here,–in the sense of ‘manly,’ strong?'” Because “virtue,” while it has this literal sense, is not used to describe “manliness” in English, but “morality” in general, among men: and when used of a woman, it is understood to refer to morality of one sort, more particularly, which happens not to be referred to in these extended descriptions in the quotations from Proverbs. If the translator had thought that this word “virtue,” or the word “virtuously” were likely to be understood in their literal sense by women,–“manly” and “manfully,” who can believe that he would ever have employed those words here?

Virtue is a quality of great importance to women, and had they been more clearly taught from pulpit, and by a more careful translation of such passages as we have been considering the obligation laid upon them in the Bible, to be strong, in body, mind and spirit; if these theologians themselves had learned this from the Bible, women would have been far better equipped to guard their virtue,–since the ruin of girls is usually due to weak character and general unfitness to cope with the world. To sum up: This Hebrew word, cha-yil, used over 200 times in the Hebrew Bible, signifies “force,” “strength,” “ability.” But in every instance where it relates to women, AND NOWHERE ELSE, it is translated “virtue,”–i.e., chastity.

— Katherine Bushnell, 1923

I sincerely hope that these lessons on sex bias open the eyes of those women and men that have been taught from the pulpits of America and abroad, to the FACT that MEN have changed scripture to write women out of autonomy, equality, honor, strength and dignity. These minor changes may not seem huge until one realizes the POSITION these changes relegate woman to in society and religion. It takes away their independence and freedom to be business minded, independent, and strong.  These changes have taken place not just in the Old Testament, but the New Testament as well, and I will continue to expose them.  In every society that is male-dominated, the changes made, relegate women to “servitude” to men.  This is not biblical. This is not ethical. This is not morally right. Women have been done the greatest injustices and no one seems to care enough to fix all the mistranslations regarding women. There are more mistranslations, but I think that one can get the picture here regarding the “subtil” work of men, in translation of scripture, to keep women in subjection to them.

Sex Bias Influences Translators – Part 2

gender bias

Scriptural changes that instigate abuse, inequality and, keep Women out of Government

In part one of Sex Bias Influences Translators, I gave everyone two examples in scripture of how men changed the meaning of scripture based on mens “preconceptions” and “self interests.” I showed how the story of the exposure of Sarah, at Abraham’s request, in Abimelech’s harem was turned around to show Sarah being “reproved” when in fact, she was not; thus leading men to believe, based on the way men worded the changes, that men had the permission to humiliate and abuse their wives. The second example was Leviticus 19:20. The change that was made here by men, gave them the power to abuse their female slave without recourse; and, took away the human rights, honor and dignity of the slave in the process. Both of these changes were done to give men power and control over women; something God did not authorize.

Now, I would like to cover “the wisdom of women.” In scripture, Cha-kam, “wise”, occurs about 130 times in the Hebrew Bible. It is invariably translated “wise” except in the following places: in 2 Sam 13:3 “subtil;” and in 10 instances “cunning,” when used of skilful workmen, 1 Chron. 22:15; 2 Chron. 2:7 (twice); 13 and 14 (twice); Isaiah 3:3; 40:20; Jer. 10:9. But in Jer. 9:17, we read in our English, “Thus saith the Lord of hosts, Consider ye, and call for the mourning women, that they may come; and send for cunning women that they may come, and let them make haste, and take up a wailing for us,” etc. The reference is to the low moral tone prevailing at Jerusalem, which threatened the overthrow of the city. Now here, surely, there is no reference to skilful workmanship on the part of women, and moreover the A.V. leaves out the rather important article “the”.  Here “the wise women” are called upon by Jehovah to show their interest and concern in matters of State,–the moral corruptness of the city; and “the wise women” are further instructed to teach their daughters to be concerned about such matters,–verse 20. Huldah (2Kgs. 22:14), admittedly the wisest prophet of the times, may have been still living at this very time (Bushnell, 1923).

Another case of prejudice in translation is Isaiah 3:12. The word translated “children” in this verse is a plural masculine participle of the verb “to glean,” “abuse,” “practice.” It is translated “glean” in Lev. 19:10, Deut. 24:21, Judg. 20:45, and Jer. 6:9. The word has no translation such as “children” anywhere else in the Bible, and it occurs 21 times. Another word altogether is used for “children,” and “child,” in verses 4 and 5 of this same chapter; the sense seems to have been fixed by the supposed context, to correspond with “women.” As to the word translated “women:” Two words, without the rabbinical vowel “points,” are exactly alike. One is pronounced nosh-im and the other na-shim. In appearance the only difference is a slight mark under the first letter of the Hebrew word na-shim. The first word means “exactors;” the one with the vowel mark under the first letter means “women.” The entire decision, therefore, as to whether the words mean one or the other depends upon OPTION. Those who pointed the word, evidently thought the nation could sink no lower than to pass under women rulers, and then translated the other word “children” to match it. Commentators frequently call attention to the alternate reading. See Adam Clarke on the passage. The Septuagint translates: “As for my people, tax-gatherers (praktores) glean them, and exactors (apaitountes) rule over them. (Bushnell, 1923)

There seems little in the context to support the translation “children” and “women.” But study the context as regards the other reading. After complaining of the “gleaners” (that is tax-gatherers) and “extortioners,” they are threatened in the following language: “The Lord standeth up to plead and standeth up to judge the people. The Lord will enter into judgment with the elders of His people, and the princes (“rulers,” masculine, not feminine gender), thereof for ye have eaten up the vineyard (the conduct of extortionate tax-gatherers), and the spoil of the poor is in your houses. What mean ye that ye crush (R.V.) my people, and grind the faces of the poor?” Because of this context, we believe that OPTION took the wrong turn when it decided to translate this verse as it stands in our English version; and that this translation would have had a strong showing up of its sophistries, had educated women been on the last Revision Committee (Bushnell, 1923).

These instances are trivial, when taken one by one. However, there are many straws floating in one direction that prove that the current runs strongly against women in every area of translation that involves women in passages of scripture. These passages have been translated in such a way that men believe that it is a “shame” for women to rule in government! It is sex bias, plain and simple, and was done to keep women on an unequal level to men for their own self-interests.

I will stop here for brevity, once again, and pick back up with this topic in my next article. Before we can proceed to exhibit other places in the Old Testament in which an unusual meaning has been placed on a word (that would not have been put upon the same word had it not specially related to women), we must cover some Hebrew language understanding and then delve into some more sex bias in translation.

Sex Bias Influences Translators – Part 1

equalitySex Bias Influences Translators AND has Led to Inequality for Women

For the past year and a half, I have been giving historical, biblical and scholarly input regarding errors in translation of scripture. I have been exposing lies of the “religious system” being taught as truth. This was the main reason I wrote my book, Religion’s Cell: Doctrines of the Church that Lead to Bondage and Abuse.  I wanted to expose these huge lies that have caused women so much harm.  These many “lies” have been the weapons used to subjugate and degrade women the world over.  The many articles that I have written, quoting experts in Hebrew and Greek, are fraught with a “theme.”  This theme is that men have written women out of places of honor, dignity, respect and equality in the original texts of scripture. As a result, women have been, and still are, the most abused race of people in human history. At the hands of men, who have interwoven these biases against women into civil laws in some countries, women are sexually exploited, sexually mutilated, abused, burned, psychologically abused, beaten and degraded just because they are women. It is time for these injustices to end and women to be given their equality and honor and dignity back.

Throughout history, men have leaned toward the strong side of preconception or self-interest in interpreting scripture.  Should anyone be surprised at this?  As a result of this, women have always borne the brunt of the abuses that stem from these “preconceptions” and “self-interests.”  Male Theology has been the “foundation” for many of the world’s governments.  Unfortunately, this theology is fraught with opinion and preconceptions and interpretations done by MEN and MEN ALONE. No class or sex should have an exclusive right to set forth the meaning of the original text of scripture.

“It is notorious that the Samaritan Hebrew text, even has been manipulated to a considerable extent to suit Samaritan prejudices, so that the manuscript must be corrected by comparison with others before it can be trusted on points that involve Samaritan interests. The Alexandrian, or Septuagint version, shows traces of an attempt to meet the prejudices of Egyptians (Bushnell, 1923).” Is it any wonder that all versions throughout history, made by men, should reveal the fact that, on the women question, they all travel more or less in a circle, in accordance with sex bias, hindering the freedom and progress of women around the world? Most “religious” men, through “self-interest” believe that women serve God best as their own undeveloped subordinate, heaping upon them undeserved and criminal treatments.

By way of example, let me bring to light two cases of sex bias.  In Genesis, chapter 20, we read the story of the exposure of Sarah, at Abraham’s request, in Abimelech’s harem(?). When the king discovers that Sarah was a married woman (through the reproof of God), he sends for Abraham, reproves him, and then pays a thousand pieces of silver to him for the injury done to her good name. The version King James 1611 (A.V.), and the version of 1884, construe the language spoken by the King on this occasion quite differently!

  • A.V. — “He is to thee a covering of the eyes, unto all that are with thee,”
  • R.V. — “It is to thee for a covering of the eyes, to all that are with thee,”
  • A.V. — “and with all other: thus she was reproved,”
  • R.V. — “and in respect of all thou art righted,”

Abimelech did this so that all would understand that the wrong was his, not Sarah’s; and she would be righted before all and ashamed before none, and would not need to cover her eyes (face) for shame. So the R.V. indicates; but the A.V. makes the blame fall upon Sarah, who is “reproved.” Abraham, was no “covering to her eyes,”– he was the primal cause of her shame and humiliation!

Another passage is Leviticus 19:20. This passage is about wrong relations with a female slave who is “not at all redeemed, nor freedom given her.” The A.V. states: “She shall be scourged. . . and he shall bring his offering.” The R.V. says: “They shall be punished . . . and he shall bring,”— etc. But the literal sense is, “There shall be inquisition . . . and he shall bring.” That is, there shall be rigid inquiry made, and when it is ascertained that she is not in a state of freedom at all, then only he shall bring the offering.

“Luther once said: “No gown worse becomes a woman than to be wise.” Luther only held the prevailing views of his day regarding women. Such men could not perceive when Scripture expressed a different thought on the subject. Prov. 14:1 says, in Hebrew, “The wisdom of woman buildeth her house,” but not being able to appreciate the advantages of female education, men rendered it: “Every wise woman buildeth her house,” that is, the woman who devotes herself to housewifely duties is pronounced “wise.” But this is not the thought; rather, wisdom itself, in woman, will build her own (not her husband’s) house,–elevate her to a place of honour. Every time there has been an opportunity for the use of OPTION in translation, use has been made of that option, by this or that man of learning, to build up one sex and to depreciate the other, and so the result, through the ages, has been cumulative. (Bushnell, 1923)”

For the sake of brevity, I will stop here. Later, though, I will bring more examples to the surface on this issue. It is time for these lies of the religious system to be exposed  for what they are — weapons for men to use against women in order to keep them on an un-equal level than them. This inequality has permeated all societies around the globe and it is time for this to change.

HollyJane (Stewart) Belle’s Story of Child Rape and Incest

My name is HollyJane (Stewart) Belle. I am tired of being silent, so here is my story..

Holly —  Daddy’s Little “Bawl Baby”.

My Dad is the Wood County Surveyor in West Virginia. His name is Scott Franklin Stewart. He is very well known in his community as being a very upright man of God, who is very active in his Independent Fundamental Baptist Church. When I was growing up, he was the leader of the junior church, my Sunday School teacher, and always walked with his head held high above everyone elses. Yes, he is a very prideful man. Above all else, he strived to be better, and have a better family than everyone else. He gave Mom and us 3 girls such strict rules to live by every day, that even the preacher’s kids seemed ‘worldly’ by comparison. He was the greatest man of God at church and no one can deny that! But at home, it was a far different story. Dad was a tyrant, who I nicknamed ‘Hitler’, and us 4 girls were the Jews in the ‘concentration camp.’  That was our home. One of my best friends from our church school told me that she thought we had the perfect family. I thought, ‘that’s what Dad wants everyone to believe, so I guess he’s got his wish.’ I didn’t say it though.

I was so afraid of everybody and everything…. so many thoughts going through my head every day, all day long.. just wanting it to stop, but they wouldn’t! Every day at our church school, then again when we started to homeschool, if I got stuck on a problem, all those thoughts would tumble forward! Those horrible, nightmarish thoughts, the ones I was trying so hard to forget! I was just sitting there, in 3rd grade, at my desk, trying so hard to finish my math, and solve the problems correctly, but, those thoughts.. The rememberance of the night before!! When my Daddy came in my room in the middle of the night!! Yes, he touched me, and made me touch him. He made me put his penis inside me. Inside my 9 year old body. “Rose, I’m going to go read my bible and pray. I’ll be back after awhile,” I would hear him tell Mama in the middle of the night. Every Saturday night, Wednesday night, and the night before Easter, Christmas Eve, and every Thursday night, (he went door to door selling Jesus to people on Thursday nights). Just like clockwork, I knew that in a few moments, daddy would show up at my door, with a washcloth in one hand, and his KJV Bible in the other hand, then whisper in Kelly and Julie’s room at them, to see if they were awake, and then he’d saunter into my room, asking if he could ‘pray’ with me for a while.

This is Dad’s version of praying with me, there, in the middle of the night, knowing I needed sleep, but never caring.. HIS needs must be met! So, he would sit and read his bible aloud to me for what seemed like an eternity. This is what Dad told me God was like – “He is a jealous God, Holly, just like your daddy is over you girls”. God wants what is best for you, Holly, just like I want what is best for you. Our heavenly Father loves the world, and the things of the world, do you believe that, Holly?” “Yes, daddy”. “Our Heavenly Father wants and craves his children for himself, Holly. Just like I do for you. “How come you never kiss me on the mouth anymore, Holly? I always loved it when you kissed me on my mouth.” How could this happen to a little girl… No wonder I hate the night… Everything bad happens at night. While he would read his Bible out loud to me, I’d fall asleep, then awake with my hand around his penis… I awoke all the time doing bad things to my dad. He raped me in my own bed, while he was praying to “Almighty God” and spanking me with his penis, telling me it was because I was such a bawl baby. In the middle of the night, my dad would come into my pink decorated bedroom, take all my stuffed animals out of my bed, wake me up, and rape me. He’d beat me with his penis, yelling to his god, “Ohhh God!!! OOOOHHH God!!!! Holly, quit bawling like a bawl baby!!!! I’ll give you something to bawl about! Ohhhh God!!!!” He just kept raping me, putting his penis inside my ‘little kitty’ as he called it. He’d use the washcloth to clean himself up afterwards, but left me to lay in the filth for the rest of the night. So many nights I slept with wetness covering my nightgown. He told me that when I hit puberty, I’d have to start shaving my ‘little kitty’. When I shaved it for the first time at age 17, my dad was the first man to notice. It wasn’t my husband, or a boyfriend, it was my dad. I felt so ashamed.

He raped me every Sunday night. I think he thought he’d been so spiritual all day Sunday, and had felt the very hand of God in his own voice while preaching to the teens, that he felt he should be rewarded. I was in 6th grade when he taught my class. He didn’t even read his bible as he was preaching. He wanted to show off to the class that he could recite the whole book of something or other, (I remember which books, but if he someday reads this, he’ll want the whole world to know what books he could recite, and have pride in it). He told me he could recite them without missing a single word. He actually humbled himself when he spoke like this to me, and said, if he missed one word, he really felt bad. But he was committed. He acted so humble, and yet still so arrogant at the same time somehow, always thinking he was the best thing God had ever made. If God would make such a creature as my dad….. and then I think I’M a mistake?? He must have felt so good about himself after not missing any of the scriptures he quoted, and when he didn’t miss a chord in the song he played for the offeratory with his guitar, and when he thought his voice was the greatest as he led the choir and the congregationals, if all this came together without a hitch, that night, he would come into my room…. We attended church regularly on Wednesday evenings as well, so he’d ‘visit’ me that night also. On Thursdays, he’d go ‘soul-winning’, selling Jesus to blocks and blocks of people, always taking me with him, then coming to my room that night. Saturday nights he’d come in again, and I wondered if he thought I was his good luck charm. I sure didn’t feel like it. All those nights with my dad, I thought he was praying, so I kept my eyes shut. But I cried the whole time. He’d ask me, “Are you going to bawl this time, Holly?” I tried to sound sure of myself, and told him no. So then he would start smacking me with that horrible, long, uncircumsised thing of his. When I was 7, we carpooled with with some 16 year old boys, and I remember wanting to sit on their laps and touch them like my dad made me touch him. I wanted to play with them like my daddy made me play with him. I hated it, doing that to my dad, but I remember thinking these boys were different. While my mom would be busy in the kitchen, and dad would be in the living room, sitting in his rocking chair, and have me get on his lap, made me unzip his fly, and I would willingly put my hand inside. I’m so sorry!!! I wish I had known better, but, when you’re a little girl, you want to hide in all the little compartments of your parent’s clothing… at least I did. I didn’t know what I was doing.

Until I came out about this, and Mom told me it wasn’t my fault, that it was that man’s fault, I thought I had done this horrible deed, this awful sin, that even GOD couldn’t forgive me. If I had just told someone sooner, maybe I wouldn’t hate myself so much for sinning so badly. All my life, this is what came with my days… every day when I would wake up, the whole day long, I would just be trying ever so hard to forget what happened the night before. I cried a lot… because I couldn’t communicate very well. I didn’t get my way a lot, or I didn’t know what I really wanted, and my mind was always racing, and rhyming. Horrible rhymes. I think in my little girl mind, I thought rhyming would make the memories go away, but it just got worse. The reason behind all of this, is because I was constantly trying to forget what had happened to me, and just always trying so hard to find something to be happy about, and thought if I could just find something that could make me so happy that I could forget what happened to me the night before, everything would be okay! I always found something to be happy about, until Dad came home. Mom has told me recently that I didn’t cry all the time. If I didn’t cry all the time, then why do I remember crying all the time? I had such fun with Mom, Kelly and Julie every single day! But, I always knew that one day they would all be grownups and leave me. I didn’t want Mom to ever have to be alone with that horrible man, so I decided I would never get married! I told myself that all men are like my dad anyway, so who wants that? I tried to get Julie to let me be her maid, so I could always be with her, she told me I could, but I always knew in the back of my mind she’d get married and leave me. Kelly was a no brainer. She wanted to get married, I tried to get her to let me be her maid, she thought I was kidding. I still wish we were all together, but I love my nieces and nephews and Kelly and her husband, so it’s all worked out… and Julie is living with us now! And even though life was hard when we didn’t have our family living around us, it wasn’t all that bad. Mom and I were together, and we had each other. If it hadn’t been for Julie and Kelly moving away, I probably wouldn’t have gotten the help I needed.. I may have just killed myself, not thinking anyone needed me… So, it’s probably worked out for the good. I was diagnosed in August of 2002 with Schizophrenia, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Major Depression, Paranoia, and a big, long list of other psychological problems. None of my parents, grandparents, great-grandparents, or immediate family have been diagnosed with these disorders. My therapist, who knows me well and has been working with me for 11 years now, has told me that I’m not a typical schizophrenic, that there is hope that I will get better one day. As a side note, one of the last times I spoke with my dad, (after I’d been diagnosed) he told me that if I lived with him, and went soul-winning with him every day, it would heal me of these problems. When I was smaller, he would tell me that I was his best friend, and that I was the only person he could really talk to. I didn’t feel like I could tell Mom, Kelly, or Julie, because he told me over and over that if I told them about him and me, Mom would divorce him, and that divorce is a sin of the devil, and it would be my fault.

I’m not proud of what was done to me, but I tell this because I’m tired of keeping quiet about something that was not my fault. I’m tired of ‘covering’ for a man who did unspeakable things to his own daughter, all while advertising himself as a godly, holy, Christlike man in all the churches he’s attended over the last 30 years.