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    The Heretic's Bible - Genesis 20: Abraham pimps his wife, again

    Abraham the wandering Jew moved south again to the Negev, where he frequently visited the city of Gerar in the land of the Philistines.

    Commentary: The Great Rabbi Ezekiel Bezekiel has written, "The Torah does not say why Abraham visited Gerar, but doubtless it was for a holy purpose known to God." Holy purpose my hairy Hebrew hiney. Read on, friends, read on.

    In Gerar, Abraham told everyone that his wife Sarah was sister. Abimelekh, the king of the Philistines, took a fancy to Sarah, even though she was well past 100 years old, and took her to his palace.

    Commentary: Ah ha! Abraham, you sly donkey. Readers may recall that in chapter 12, Abraham pulled the same scam on the Pharaoh of Egypt, who richly compensated him for his "sister's" services.

    That night, God came to Abimelekh in a dream and informed him that he would die for sleeping with a married woman.

    Commentary: Once again, Abraham defrauds a rich guy, and God shakes down the victim. Quite a racket they've got going.

    Abimelekh, who hadn't touched Sarah, protested, "O Lord, will You even kill an innocent nation? Didn't [her husband] tell me that she was his sister?"

    Commentary: Abimelekh seems to have concluded that God would not only kill him but all his people too, a reasonable supposition given God's track record.

    God replied in the dream, "I also realize that you have done this with an innocent heart. That is why I prevented you from sinning against Me, not giving you an opportunity to touch her. Now return the man's wife, for he is a prophet."

    Commentary: All hail Abraham, the Prophet Pimp of Palestine. A wise man once said, "When pimps be prophets, then ho's be holy virgins." OK, I just made that up, but I think that it has a nice ring.

    Before taking leave of Abimelekh's dream, God added, "But if you do not return [her], you can be sure that you will die - you and all that is yours."

    Commentary: Yep, Abimelekh had God pegged.

    In the morning, Abimelekh summoned Abraham, and said, "How could you do this to us? What terrible thing did I do to you that you brought such great guilt upon me and my people? The thing you did to me is simply not done!"

    Commentary: Well, actually, it was done in chapter 12. And it will be done again in chapter 26--Abraham's son will pull the exact same stunt with the EXACT SAME GUY. But hold your horses,* that's a story for another chapter. Back to our tale.

    Abraham replied to Abimelekh, "I realized that the one thing missing here is the fear of God. I could be killed because of my wife. In any case, she really is my sister. She is the daughter of my father, but not the daughter of my mother. I asked her to do me a favor. Wherever we came, she was to say that I was her brother."

    Commentary: Speaks for itself, really.

    Abimelekh was apparently impressed by this explanation because he gave Abraham sheep, cattle, male and female slaves, and 1000 pieces of silver.

    Commentary: All in a days work for a sister-schtupping, wife-pimping con-man.

    Abraham then prayed to God on Abimelekh's behalf, and God healed Abimelekh and his wife and slave girls so that they could have children. Because, by the way, God had previously sealed their wombs during the whole prostitution shakedown.

    Commentary: No disrespect to God's inimitable storytelling skills, but if I were His editor, I would have told Him to put the bit about the wombs earlier in the chapter instead of tacking it on at the end. On second thought, I would have just cut it entirely. The whole story took less than a day, so there wasn't even enough time for anyone to realize that her womb had been sealed. And besides, God was going to kill them all, so who cares about the stupid wombs. Of course, God would never hire a poor latriner like me as an editor. He'd choose a sage like the Great Rabbi Ezekiel Bezekiel, who has written, "Blessed be Abraham, Father of the Jews, who showed the Philistines the path to righteousness." See, how could I hope to compete with such sagacity?

    * Hold your horses. Low Aramaic slang, literally "grab your goat by the scrotum."

    The Heretic's Bible is a translation of a recently discovered commentary by a notorious first century heretic, Joseph the Latriner. The commentary is presented in italics with footnotes by the translator.

    Previous: Genesis 19 - No rear entry
    Next: Genesis 21: Isaac gets born; Ishmael gets booted


    >>>A wise man once said... OK, I just made that up, but I think that it has a nice ring.

    So it was said by a wise man after all.  I just knew it.


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