(Warning: Contains horrific scenes of violence, abuse, murder, and rape. Keep away from children!)
Excessive violence, sexually explicit scenes, and sexual abuse are often given as reasons for banning books. Alice Walker’s The Color Purple is frequently banned for sexual abuse, and Alex Gino’s George is banned for homosexuality. Schools and libraries ban books to protect young minds from exposure to such horrors. Violence is also considered a good reason for banning books from schools and libraries.
In past years, I’ve marked Banned Books Week by arguing that books should not be banned. Well, I’ve had a change of heart. Let’s by all means protect our innocent young ones from bad influences!
Not only have I come around, I’ve selected the next book we need to ban. It’s far worse than anything on current lists. In fact, it has a great deal more rape, incest, sodomy, murder, kidnapping, blood, and gore than any banned books. I can’t think why it’s been overlooked by those who are so eager to protect our young ones.
Yes, it’s high time we banned The Bible.
Here are some of the things that make The Bible my top candidate for banning:
Talks about sex and intoxication a lot:
May her breasts satisfy you always, may you ever be intoxicated with her love - Proverbs 5
They become one flesh - Genesis 2:24
I said, “I will climb the palm tree; I will take hold of its fruit.” - Song of Songs 7:8
Talks often about men having sex with men, for instance:
“Men who have sex with men” - Corinthians 9: 9
Tells people to have sex after prayer:
Do not deprive one another, except perhaps by agreement for a limited time, that you may devote yourselves to prayer; but then come together again, so that Satan may not tempt you because of your lack of self-control. - Corinthians 7:5
Is fixated on murder:
“Cain spoke to Abel his brother. And when they were in the field, Cain rose up against his brother Abel and killed him.”
At least thirty named characters are murdered, including Abel, Abner, Absalom, and Adonijah, and that’s not even all the A names. Belshazzar is murdered. So is King Eglon. At the other end of the alphabet, two Uriahs die by murder and so does Zechariah.
Allows Kings to abuse their power in order to sleep with women they fancy:
One evening David got up from his bed and walked around on the roof of the palace. From the roof, he saw a woman bathing. The woman was very beautiful, and David sent someone to find out about her. The man said, “She is Bathsheba, the daughter of Eliam and the wife of Uriah the Hittite.” Then David sent messengers to get her. She came to him, and he slept with her. 2 Samuel 11: 1-4
Treats women as chattel:
And when the princes of Pharaoh saw her, they praised her to Pharaoh. And the woman was taken into Pharaoh’s house. (Genesis 12:16 And for her sake he dealt well with Abram (Abram being her husband, although he’d told her to ‘Say you are my sister, that it may go well with me because of you’ (Genesis 12: 13). “The woman’ in this story has a name, Sarai, and she was Abram’s wife.
Includes instances of incest:
Besides, she is indeed my sister, the daughter of my father though not the daughter of my mother, and she became my wife. (Genesis 20:12, in which Abraham marries his sister Sarah)
Condones terror as an acceptable strategy:
He took a pair of oxen, cut them into pieces, and sent them by messengers throughout the land of Israel, proclaiming, "This is what will be done to the oxen of anyone who does not march behind Saul and Samuel." Then the terror of the LORD fell upon the people, and they turned out as one man. - 1 Samuel 11:7
Allows mass murder of innocents “with the edge of the sword”:
So the assembly sent twelve thousand fighting men with instructions to go to Jabesh Gilead and put to the sword those living there, including the women and children. Judges 21:10 (New International Version) In the English Standard Version the instructions are even more specific: “Go and strike the inhabitants of Jabesh-Gilead with the edge of the sword; also the women and the little ones.”
Encourages killing of families in order to kidnap and rape their virgin daughters:
Judges 21 is not just about wholesale slaughter, it’s about taking the young women from the city of Jabesh Gilead as sex slaves while slaughtering everyone else: “You shall utterly destroy every male and every woman who has known a man intimately.” And then they captured 400 young women, raped them, and forced them to bear their children.
Depicts numerous graphic scenes of rape and sexual abuse:
Now Dinah the daughter of Leah, whom she had borne to Jacob, went out to see the women of the land. And when Shechem the son of Hamor the Hivite, the prince of the land, saw her, he seized her and lay with her and humiliated her. Genesis 34: 1-2
Then Amnon said to Tamar, “Bring the food into the chamber, that I may eat from your hand.” And Tamar took the cakes she had made and brought them into the chamber to Amnon her brother. 11 But when she brought them near him to eat, he took hold of her and said to her, “Come, lie with me, my sister.” She answered him, “No, my brother, do not violate1 me…But he would not listen to her, and being stronger than she, he violated her and lay with her. (Samuel 13: 12-14)
In another example, Lot first offers up his daughters for gang rape (the gang has gathered outside his house): “Now pray, I have two daughters who have never known a man, pray, let me bring them out to you, and you may deal with them as you like it.” (Genesis 19: 8)
As if that wasn’t enough, then the daughters sleep with their own father a few lines later: “Our father is old and there is no man to lie with us as is the way all over the earth” (Genesis 19: 31). But I suspect this to be not the actual story but the male perpetrator’s version of what happened. Lot says his daughters got him drunk and seduced him without his knowledge and that’s how he got them both pregnant…? Whatever was going on in Lot’s house, it’s certainly the stuff of book bans.
Thematically features homosexual gang rape:
While we’re on the subject of Lot, the reason a gang of men was outside his house that night was because they wanted to sodomize his two male guests. However these guests (unlike others in the past) were angels, so Lot felt it necessary to protect them.
This theme of a gang outside the house wanting to sodomize a male guest is repeated in another Bible story where the man of the house protects his male guest by offering his daughter along with the guest’s concubine: Look, here is my virgin daughter, and his concubine. I will bring them out to you now, and you can use them and do to them whatever you wish. (Judges 19).
The story then elaborates upon the fate of the concubine: When her master got up in the morning and opened the door of the house and stepped out to continue on his way, there lay his concubine, fallen in the doorway of the house, with her hands on the threshold. 28 He said to her, “Get up; let’s go.” But there was no answer. Then the man put her on his donkey and set out for home. When he reached home, he took a knife and cut up his concubine, limb by limb, into twelve parts and sent them into all the areas of Israel.
Oh yes, we definitely have to ban this one.
Alex Hiam is a fully vaccinated parent, teacher, and children’s book author. His books Silent Lee and the Adventure of the Side Door Key and Silent Lee and the Oxford Adventure are available now on Amazon and Kindle.