Are children of incest still banned from the community of the Lord?

Deuteronomy 23:3 reads, according to the New American Bible for Catholics, “No child of an incestuous union may be admitted into the community of the Lord, nor any descendant of his even to the tenth generation.”

I am fairly confident that this passage does not reflect the teachings of the Church today. How can this be reconciled with scriptural inerrancy?

Dear Bill,

Quite simply, we are no longer bound by the prescriptions of the Old Law. Jesus fulfilled the Old Law. The reason for the ban in Deuteronomy had to do with the practices of the Canaanite religions. The Israelites were to remain distant from such people and their pagan ways.

Fr. Vincent Serpa, O.P.

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