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Why is the method of testing chastity different in Deuteronomy 22:13–21 than in Numbers 5?

Moses in Numbers said that chastity be tested by drinking bitter water and seeing if the woman’s stomach would swell (see Numbers 5:13-22). But, he said Deuteronomy 22 provides the blood-stained sheet from the wedding night as evidence of virginity (cf. Dt 22:14-17). 

Deuteronomy 22:13 - 30

ESV - 13 If any man takes a wife and goes in to her and then hates her 14 And accuses her of misconduct and brings a bad name upon her, saying, 'I took this woman, and when I came near her, I did not find in her evidence of virginity.

Clarify Share Report Asked January 22 2022 Mini Anonymous

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Mini Tim Maas Retired Quality Assurance Specialist with the U.S. Army
To me, the blood-stained sheet in Deuteronomy is a "one-time" proof caused by an event that will not occur again (that is, bleeding caused by the penetration of the hymen of a virgin female during initial intercourse) to show that the woman was a virgin at the time of marriage (although modern science does not regard such bleeding (or the lack thereof) as a reliable indicator of whether or not the woman has had prior intercourse), whereas the procedure outlined in Numbers is a more generalized method designed to detect infidelity in a woman of whatever age or marital history.

January 23 2022 0 responses Vote Up Share Report


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