The book of Deuteronomy in the 22nd chapter of the 5th verse, “The woman shall not wear that which pertaineth unto a man, neither shall a man put on a woman’s garment: for all that do so are abomination unto the LORD thy God”, is the scripture that readily comes to mind to caution Christian females, especially, in the mode of acceptable dressing. The first thing I do in the proper catechizing of Deuteronomy 22:5 is to ask what the meanings of the salient words mean in this verse. Almost every time I carry out this simple test a score of 2 out of 8 is the outcome. Christians, please, study the Bible! Without further ado let us go into another settlement of scriptural controversy.
The first key word is ‘woman’. ‘Woman’ has three Hebrew interpretations which are: (1) na‛ărah (nah-ar-aw’): is a feminine of [na‛ar (nah’-ar) (concretely) a boy (as active), from the age of infancy to adolescence; by implication a servant)], meaning: ‘a girl (from infancy to adolescence): – damsel, maid’. Na’arah is a girl child or servant. (2) neqebah (nek-ay-baw’) female (from the sexual form). This neqebah is what we fondly call ‘figure 8’ to describe a beautifully shaped feminine. (3) ‘ishshah (ish-shaw’): ‘woman, wife, female’. Ishshah is the only one among the three that translates ‘wife’ and its first use is found in Genesis 2:22 & 23, when Adam made the first woman his wife. Interestingly, the woman in Deuteronomy 22:5 is ishshah. If God meant this taboo for the feminine gender Moses would have used neqebah. So, why only the wife? We will get there soon.
The next word is ‘wear’ which in Hebrew is hayah (haw-yaw), meaning: ‘to exist, be, become, come to pass (always emphatic, and not a mere copula or auxiliary)’. The word ‘wear’, according to scripture, in this verse speaks of ‘a state of being’. The third test I always put forth is ‘pertaineth’ which actually includes two preceding words making it ‘that which pertaineth’ which is one Hebrew word: kelıy (kel-ee’): ‘something prepared, that is, any apparatus (as an implement, utensil, dress, vessel or weapon)’. Pertaineth, I am yet to read from any Bible Commentary to mean ‘a tool’! Most Bible commentary regard it as a military wear, which does not fit, contextually. The fourth is ‘man’: geber (gheh’-ber) ‘man, strong man, warrior (emphasizing strength or ability to fight); generally, a person’. The only two Hebrew words among all the sixteen interpretations of ‘man’ that mean husband are iysh and ba’al. The ‘man’, therefore, is unconnected to the ishshah as the definition proves. Let us progress to the fifth, ‘man’, which is the same as geber above. ‘Put on’, the seventh, is labash (law-bash’): ‘to dress, wear, clothe, put on clothing, be clothed’. ‘Wear’, contextually is not quite the same as ‘put on’. ‘Garment’, which is the eighth, is an interesting: śimlah (sim-law’): ‘a dress, especially a mantle’ ‘[Perhaps by permutation for the feminine of [semel (seh’-mel) to resemble; a likeness] (through the idea of a cover assuming the shape of the object beneath)’.
Rihanna & Shakira in a lesbian show of love.
As we have seen in the definitions of the key words, the woman has a marital status (the Bible has ‘the’, a definite article, attached to the woman to indicate that this is a particular woman) unlike the man as a geber, whose gender is likely to be of bachelorhood (it has an indefinite article, ‘a’ – signifying that he can be any person). What the woman covers herself with is not the issue in this context. What she is found in is a means of communication, a tool. She becomes a man to actively perform the duty of a man (which, in this case, is an abominable act before the God of Israel). As a wife she is licenced to have sex unlike the geber who does not have the marital status of an iysh. The only way her toga will assume an abominable existence is when she sleeps with another man, who is not her husband. But the tool the ishshah is wielding here is that of a man – a valiant one – and the only way she can accomplish this feat is by having sex with a fellow gender! Sodomy had been introduced into this world many centuries earlier and God hated to see it in the camp of His people, just as the abhorrence of it made HIM annihilate the entire population of two nations. This is the only reason a change of outlook, garment wise, will ever draw God’s ire. What a lesbian or homosexual has to do, in the wandering Israelites camp, is just to change into the clothing of an opposite sex and the message is so crystal clear – they know where to meet.
Garment, simlah, comes from a word, semel which is indicative of semblance. Simlah is a garment which presupposes that what is inside the garment is what should be expected. It is a way of calling out, “fun time” to those of the same disposition. When a man wears a traditionally known female clothe he signals to his gay male friends. When clothing becomes a code of immorality it, definitely, should anger God because of His continual presence there with them. It is not the mere donning of an opposite sex’s clothe, it is rather the evil spirit behind it all, the very existence of an assumption, propelled by demonic influence, that is why. Whatever man engages himself in without being energized by the Spirit of God is indirectly a service to the one of perdition, doomed for hell. (To be concluded….)