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Old Jun 14, '12, 6:02 pm
smith500 smith500 is offline
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Join Date: October 19, 2005
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Default Theology of the Body and Covenantal Theology

Iíd appreciate comments on my thoughts on love making being covenantal as it relates to the Theology of the Body. Did God design the body to embody covenant making?

Catholics have the Biblical view of Malachi 2:14 that marriage is a covenant and frequently call the marital act a covenantal act. JP II in his Theology of the Body calls the marital act a complete gift of self.

Covenantal acts in the Bible had elements of deep sleep, verbal oath, a blood oath, a postive sign of the oath and a self-curse of death for breaking the covenant.

According to Scott Hahn, a ritual enactment of death by excruciating and humiliating means is a common form of oath recorded in the ancient near-east documents. Genesis 15 has self-curse ritual enactment with Abraham cutting animals in half with the person doing that bearing the punishment of what was done to those animals if the oath is broken. Genesis 15 also has Abraham being in a deep sleep before the self-curse ritual.

Hahn also has made the argument that Adam sinned by not protecting Eve from the serpent which he argues was a threat to the mortal life of Adam. Eve failed Godís command to tend to the Garden by not willing to lay down his live to protect Eve. In contrast, Christ was willing to lay down his life for us and the New Testament says husbands should love their wives the way the Christ loved the church.

In joining the two stories of the creation of man, a covenantal ceremony is created. God casts a deep sleep over Adam before creating Eve. Then in the image of God they unite and become one flesh.

Hahn has also called the dubbing of a knight a covenantal ceremony. He does not go into detail, but knights typically slept before the ceremony. An oath was given to protect the kingdom. The knight gave his sword to the crown and the King or Queen raised the sword over the knight, but gently tapped the knight on the shoulder. This can be interpreted as a self-curse ritual if the knight breaks the oath as king or queen could easily strike a mortal blow upon the knight during the ceremony.

The ritual or raising the sword can also be interpreted as a sign the knight was giving the complete gift of self to the crown, willing to lay down his life. The sword is a sign of the knightís power and manliness which he as honed to perfection and given to the crown. A great celebration of feasting would follow.

My question is weather God designed the body and the marital act to have the elements of covenant.

A verbal oath is given at a marriage ceremony.
Sex frequently involves sleeping together.
There is the sign of a positive oath of the two bodies becoming one.
The breaking of the hymen involves the spilling of blood (cutting a covenant).
A ritual of self-curse is made by allowing oneself to become completely vulnerable.
A great celebration of feasting (love-making) ensues.

Regarding ritual self-curse, the husband and wife put themselves in complete physical vulnerability. During love making, the husband freely gives himself and the wife can easily kill the husband through excruciating and humiliating means by squeezing and pulling his testicles. (The wife also freely gives herself in positions of complete vulnerability.) This can interpreted that allowing the touching of genitals is a ritual enactment of a self curse for breaking the marital vows.

The touching of genitals can also be a sign that the husband gives the complete gift of self willing to lay down his life for his wife as Christ laid down his life for the church. The testicles provide the strength of the man that he gives completely to his wife just as a knight gives his sword to the crown.

The touch of genitals was also an oath of caring for the progeny of the man as Abraham had his servant swear to find a suitable spouse for Isaac as he placed his hand under Abrahamís thigh.

Did God design the body to have covenantal signs similar to the covenant making of the Bible and/or knighthood dubbing ceremonies?
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Old Jun 14, '12, 8:39 pm
healonzo's Avatar
healonzo healonzo is offline
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Default Re: Theology of the Body and Covenantal Theology

Check this out...
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Old Jun 14, '12, 10:29 pm
smith500 smith500 is offline
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Default Re: Theology of the Body and Covenantal Theology

Thanks, healonzo.

I've previosly read what you linked and other things that call the marital act a covenantal act.

I haven't read anything that links the biblical covenant accounts of covenants including blood oath and self-curse to the marital act implicit in our bodies.

I think linking the marital act as analagous to a knight pledging himself to serving his princess has a romantic element that is attractive while at the same time stressing the seriousness of the covenantal commitment. We need something positive to sell teens on chastity. I'm not saying Kippley is wrong, but his tone is a turn off.
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