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Why was Onan killed by God? What was his wickedness?


Genesis 38:9 - 10

ESV - 9 But Onan knew that the offspring would not be his. So whenever he went in to his brother's wife he would waste the semen on the ground, so as not to give offspring to his brother. 10 And what he did was wicked in the sight of the Lord, and he put him to death also.

Clarify Share Report Asked November 09 2019 Mini Titch Mawoz

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Mini Tim Maas Retired Quality Assurance Specialist with the U.S. Army
Onan's sin was his refusal to consummate his relationship with the widow of his older brother, Er, whom God had slain because of his wickedness. 

Onan did this because he knew that a child that he conceived with Er's widow would legally be regarded as his late brother's, and he was unwilling to conceive children that would not be legally his.

(Because the Bible says that Onan's refusal to consummate the relationship with his brother's widow took the form of Onan spilling his "seed" (that is, his semen/sperm) on the ground, some people have regarded this as a Biblical condemnation of masturbation, and masturbation has sometimes been referred to as "onanism". However, masturbation is an autoerotic act that does not involve another person, and thus does not conform to the description of the sin that Onan committed.)

(Although the requirement for a man's widow to marry her late husband's brother was not formally codified until the giving of the Law (Deuteronomy 25:5), it was apparently an established custom in the days of the patriarchs, as indicated by Judah instructing Onan to marry his brother's widow (Genesis 38:8).)

November 09 2019 0 responses Vote Up Share Report

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