Tobias


#1

Did Tobias marry his sister? I know they had a lot of strange laws in the Jewish teachings. Things considered non sinful like incest - maybe that was noahide - and now it's taught it's wrong. God does not change but man does. What's a sin at one time is one later. Are we given so much for awhile and later as we need it taught something else?


#2

[quote="billcu1, post:1, topic:312801"]
Did Tobias marry his sister? I know they had a lot of strange laws in the Jewish teachings. Things considered non sinful like incest - maybe that was noahide - and now it's taught it's wrong. God does not change but man does. What's a sin at one time is one later. Are we given so much for awhile and later as we need it taught something else?

[/quote]

What would leave you to believe that Tobias married his sister? Do you have a particular passage or verse of Scripture you were wondering about?


#3

[quote="Fidelis, post:2, topic:312801"]
What would leave you to believe that Tobias married his sister? Do you have a particular passage or verse of Scripture you were wondering about?

[/quote]

Yes forgive me I've never read the book. But what I read was Tobias and if I remember right his sister got down on their hands and knees at their beds and prayed then got back in bed? This had something to do with marriage.


#4

didn't know this book even existed

The Book of Tobit:3:17 And Raphael was sent to heal the two of them: to scale away the white films of Tobit's eyes; to give Sarah the daughter of Raguel in marriage to Tobias the son of Tobit, and to bind Asmodeus the evil demon, because Tobias was entitled to possess her.

i think you are not "remembering right"


#5

[quote="Aloysium, post:4, topic:312801"]
The Book of Tobit:3:17 And Raphael was sent to heal the two of them: to scale away the white films of Tobit's eyes; to give Sarah the daughter of Raguel in marriage to Tobias the son of Tobit, and to bind Asmodeus the evil demon, because Tobias was entitled to possess her.

[/quote]

The New American Bible footnote on the above verse notes the following:

[3:17] It fell to Tobiah’s lot: according to the patriarchal custom of marriage within the family group. Tobiah was Sarah’s closest eligible relative (6:12). Cf. 4:12–13; Gn 24:4; 28:2; Ru 3:9–12; 4:1–12.

Later, in Chapter 6, we find:

11Raphael said to the young man, “Brother Tobiah!” He answered, “Here I am!” Raphael continued, “Tonight we must stay in the house of Raguel, who is a relative of yours. He has a beautiful daughter named Sarah, 12 but no other son or daughter apart from Sarah. Since you are Sarah’s closest relative, you more than any other have the right to marry her. **Moreover, her father’s estate is rightfully yours to inherit. The girl is wise, courageous, and very beautiful; and her father is a good man who loves her dearly.” 13 He continued: “You have the right to marry her. So listen to me, brother. Tonight I will speak to her father about the girl so that we may take her as your bride. When we return from Rages, we will have the wedding feast for her. I know that Raguel cannot keep her from you or promise her to another man; he would incur the death penalty as decreed in the Book of Moses. For he knows that you, more than anyone else, have the right to marry his daughter.** Now listen to me, brother; we will speak about this girl tonight, so that we may arrange her engagement to you. Then when we return from Rages, we will take her and bring her back with us to your house.”

The confusion may stem from the formula for the wedding formula used in Chapter 7, when Raguel says:

"...She is yours as decreed by the Book of Moses. It has been decided in heaven that she be given to you! Take your kinswoman; from now on you are her brother, and she is your sister. She is given to you today and here ever after. May the Lord of heaven prosper you both tonight, son, and grant you mercy and peace.”


#6

[quote="Fidelis, post:5, topic:312801"]
The New American Bible footnote on the above verse notes the following:
Later, in Chapter 6, we find:

The confusion may stem from the formula for the wedding formula used in Chapter 7, when Raguel says:

[/quote]

What I read was one of these men and his wife getting down for prayer that night. Saying a prayer and returning to bed. Since I am not familiar with this book I can't cite chapter and verse.


#7

[quote="billcu1, post:6, topic:312801"]
What I read was one of these men and his wife getting down for prayer that night. Saying a prayer and returning to bed. Since I am not familiar with this book I can't cite chapter and verse.

[/quote]

From Chapter 8:

4 When the door was shut and the two were alone, Tobias got up from the bed and said, "Sister, get up, and let us pray that the Lord may have mercy upon us." 5 And Tobias began to pray, "Blessed art thou, O God of our fathers, and blessed by thy holy and glorious name for ever. Let the heavens and all thy creatures bless thee. 6 Thou madest Adam and gavest him Eve his wife as a helper and support. From them the race of mankind has sprung. Thou didst say, 'It is not good that the man should be alone; let us make a helper for him like himself.' 7 And now, O Lord, I am not taking this sister of mine because of lust, but with sincerity. Grant that I may find mercy and may grow old together with her."

Of course, Tobias calls his new wife "sister" in the context mentioned above--not because they were literally brother and sister from the same parents. The NAB translates the word "sister" here as "kinswoman".

(Tobit, Chapter 8, NABRE)

That's why it's good to use more that one translation of the Bible for reference; it helps to clear up things like this.


#8

[quote="Fidelis, post:7, topic:312801"]
From Chapter 8:
Of course, Tobias calls his new wife "sister" in the context mentioned above--not because they were literally brother and sister from the same parents. The NAB translates the word "sister" here as "kinswoman".

(Tobit, Chapter 8, NABRE)

That's why it's good to use more that one translation of the Bible for reference; it helps to clear up things like this.

[/quote]

THat's it! ok I misread sister here.


#9

[quote="billcu1, post:1, topic:312801"]
Did Tobias marry his sister? I know they had a lot of strange laws in the Jewish teachings. Things considered non sinful like incest - maybe that was noahide - and now it's taught it's wrong. God does not change but man does. What's a sin at one time is one later. Are we given so much for awhile and later as we need it taught something else?

[/quote]

As others said, no.

(Greek II, 6:10-18)

And when he went into Media and already drew near to Ecbatana, Raphael said to the young man, “Brother Tobias.” And he said to him, “Here I am.” Then he said to him, “This night we must stay in the home of Ragouelos. Now the man is your relative, and he has a (beautiful) daughter whose name is Sarra. And he has no male son or daughter except Sarra alone, and you are closer to her than all other men, to have her as an inheritance. Also the girl is sensible and brave and very beautiful, and her father is noble.” And he said, “It is right for you to take her. So listen to me, brother, and I shall speak to the father about the girl this night so that we may take her to be your bride. And, when we return from Rhaga, we shall celebrate her wedding feast. And I know that Ragouel cannot keep her from you or promise her to another; he would be liable to death according to the decree of the book of Moyses. And he knows that the inheritance is yours by right to take his daughter before any other man. So now listen to me, brother, and shall speak this night concerning the girl and have her engaged to you. And, when we return from Rhaga, we shall take her and bring her back with us to your house.”

Then in reply Tobias said to Raphael, “Brother Azarias, I have heard that she already has been given to seven husbands, and they died in their bridal chamber. On the night when they went in toward her, they would die. And I heard people say that a demon kills them. And now I am afraid – for it does not harm her, but anyone who desires to approach her it kills; I am my father’s only son – that I may die and bring my father’s and my mother’s life, because of me, to their grave with sorrow. And they have no other son, that he may bury them.”

But he said to him, “Do you not remember your father’s commandments, that he commanded you to take a wife from your father’s house? So now listen to me, brother, and do not worry about the demon, and take her. And I know that this night a wife will be given to you. Now when you go into the bridal chamber, take some of the fish’s liver and heart, and put them on the embers of the incense, and the smell will go forth. Then the demon will smell it and flee and will never be seen around her any more. And when you are about to be with her, get up first, both of you, and pray, and beseech the Lord of heaven that mercy and safety may be upon you. So do not be afraid, for she was set apart for you from of old. And you will save her, and she will go with you. And I suppose that you will have children by her, and they will be as brothers to you. Do not worry!” Now when Tobias heard the words of Raphael, and that she was his kinswoman of the lineage of his father’s house, he loved her very much, and his heart clung to her.

(Greek II, 7:1-11)

Now when they entered into Ecbatana, he said to him, “Brother Azarias, lead me straight to Ragouel our brother.” So he led him into the house of Ragouelos, and they found him sitting beside the door of the courtyard. And they greeted him first, and he said to them, “Many joyful greetings, brothers, and welcome in good health!” Then he led them into his house. And he said to Edna his wife, “How much this young man resembles Tobis my kinsman!” Then Edna asked them and said to them, “Where are you from, brothers?” And they said to her, “We belong to the children of Nephthaleim, who were taken captive in Nineue.” So she said to them, “Do you know Tobis our kinsman?” And they said to her, “We do know him.” Then she said to them, “Is he in good health?” And they said to her, “He is in good health and alive.” And Tobias said, “He is my father!” Then Ragouel jumped up and kissed him and wept. And he spoke and said to him, “Blessings on you, my child, son of a noble and good father! O most miserable of calamities that a righteous man who also gives alms has becomes blind!” Then he fell on the neck of Tobias his kinsman and wept. Also Edna his wife wept for him, and Sarra their daughter likewise wept. Then he slaughtered a ram from the flock and welcomed them very warmly.
Now when they had bathed and washed themselves and had reclined to have dinner, Tobias said to Raphael, “Brother Azarias, speak to Ragouel that he give to me Sarra my kinswoman.” But Ragouel heard the word and said to the lad, “Eat, and drink, and be merry this night. For there is no man who has the right to take Sarra my daughter except you, brother. Likewise I myself do not have the authority to give her to any other man except you, because you are my nearest relative. But let me explain the truth more fully, my child. I have given her to seven men of our kinsmen, and all died on the night when they went in toward her. So now, my child, eat, and drink, and the Lord will do something with you both.” Then Tobias said, “I will neither eat nor drink until you settle the things that pertain to me.” So Ragouel said to him, “I will do it. Indeed, she is given to you according to the decree of the book of Moyses, and from heaven it has been decreed that she be given to you. Take your kinswoman; from now on you are her brother, and she is your sister. She has been given to you from today and forever. And may the Lord of heaven prosper you both this night, my child, and grant you mercy and peace.”


#10

(Continued)

(Greek I, 6:10-18)

Now as they approached Rhagai, the angel said to the young man, “Brother, today we stay with Ragouel. Now he is your relative, and he has an only daughter named is Sarra. I shall speak up for her, that she be given to you as wife, because her inheritance falls to you; also you are the only one of her kindred. And the girl is beautiful and sensible. So now listen to me, brother, and I shall speak to her father. And when we return from Rhaga, we shall celebrate the wedding feast. For I know that Ragouel cannot give her to another man, according to the law of Moyses, or else he would be liable to death, because it is right for you to receive the inheritance before any other man.”

Then the young man said to the angel, “Brother Azarias, I have heard that the girl has been given to seven husbands and akk died in the bridal chamber. And now I am the only one my father has, and I fear that I may go in and die as did those before me, for a demon loves her, and he harms no one except those who approach her. So now I fear that I may die and bring my father’s and my mother’s life, because of me, to their grave with sorrow. And they have no other son who will bury them.”

But the angel said to him, “Do you not remember the words with which your father commanded you, to take a wife from your among your people? So now listen to me, brother, for she will become your wife. Also do not worry about the demon, for this night she will be given to you as wife. Now when you go into the bridal chamber, you shall take embers of incense and lay upon them some of the fish’s heart and liver, and you shall make smoke. Then the demon will smell it and flee and will never again come back. Now when you come near her, rise up, both of you, and cry out to the merciful God, and he will save you and have mercy. Do not be afraid, for she has been prepared for you from of old. And you will save her, and she will go with you, and I suppose that you will have children by her.” Now when Tobias heard these things, he loved her, and his spirit clung to her intensely.

(Greek I, 7:1-11)

And they went into Ecbatana and arrived at the house of Ragouel. Sarra then met them and greeted them, and they her. And she brought them into the house. Then Ragouel said to Edna his wife, “How much this young man resembles Tobit my cousin!” And Ragouel asked them, “Where are you from, brothers?” And they said to him, “We belong to the children of Nephthaleim, who are captives in Nineue.” So he said to them, “Do you know Tobit our kinsman?” And they said, “We do know him.” Then he said to them, “Is he in good health?” And they said, “He is both alive and in good health.” Then Ragouel jumped up and kissed him and wept. And he blessed him and said to him, “Son of that noble and good man!” And hearing that Tobit had lost his eyes, he grieved and wept. Also Edna his wife and Sarra his daughter wept, and they welcomed them very warmly. Then they killed a ram of the flock, and they set out large servings of food.

Tobias then said to Raphael, “Brother Azarias, speak of those things which you talked about on the journey, and let the matter be settled.” So he communicated the word to Ragouel. And Ragouel said to Tobias, “Eat, and drink, and be merry, for it is your right to take my child. But let me explain the truth to you. I have given my child to seven husbands, and when they came in in toward her, they died during the night. But for now be merry.” Then Tobias said, “I will taste nothing here until you stand firm and are confirmed in my regard.” So Ragouel said, “Take her from now on, according to the decree. And you are her brother, and she is yours. Now may the merciful God prosper you both with the best.”


#11

(4Q197, fr, 4 + 4Q196, fr, 14 i, ii; 6:12-18 [6:13-18])

And when they entered Media and he was already ne[aring Ecbatana, Raphael said to the young] man, T[o]biah, my brother. And he said to him, Here am I. And he said to him, In the house [of Raguel we shall stay. And the man is from the house of our father. And he has a beautiful daughter ... **[And] he has [no other (children) except Sarah a]l[one]. And you are re[lat]ed to her ... [And this young girl] **II [wise, stron]g and very beautiful, and her father loves [her]** ... her father. And a just decision has been made concerning you to m[arry her] ... You will speak about this young girl tonight. You will retain her and take her to be your wif[e ... And {when we return from [Rages]} (4Q196), [we shall make for her] a wedding-feast. And I know that Raguel cannot refuse her to you for he knows ... and to marry his daughter than any (other) ma[n. For h]e kno[ws] that if he were to give her to [another] man [this would be against the law in the Book] of Moses. And not [let us speak about] this [young] gir[l] tonight and let us retain her [for you ... Then Tobiah replied and said to Rapha]el, Azariah my brother, I have heard ... (that she had seven husbands who all died) when they went in to her. ... And now I am [af]raid of this demon who {loves her ... the demon kills them} (4Q196)
...(bring) my [fath]er and my mother [to the grave ... They have] no other son [to bury them.] {[Do you not remember the com]mands of your father} (4Q196) who commanded you ... {[And no]w listen to me, my brother. Do not (be afraid of) this [de]mon and marry (her) {tonight ... [t]ake from the heart [of the fish] ... the demon [will sme]ll it and will [flee]} (4Q196)
... (When you go in) [to be wi]th her, ri[se up] ... [And do n]ot be afraid [for] she has been allotted to you and for you ... you will save [her. And] I suppose that you will have [children by her ... **And when] Tobiah [h]eard the words of Raphae[l that she was h]is sister and of [the house of his father's family] he fell in love with her [gr]eatly and his heart (was much attached) to her.

I should note that there are also instances where the elder Tobit calls his wife "sister":

(Greek II, 5:17b-6:1)

Then he (Tobith) called his son and said to him, “My child, prepare the things for the journey, and go out with your brother. And may God in heaven bring you safely there and restore you back to me in good health, and may his angel journey along with you in safety, my child.” And he went out to go on his journey, and he kissed his father and mother. Then Tobith said to him, “Go in good health.”
But his mother wept and said to Tobith, “Why is it that you have sent my child away? Is he not the rod of our hand as he goes in and goes out before us? Do not add silver to silver, but let it be a ransom for our child. For as it has been given to us to live by the Lord, that is enough.” And he said to her, “Do not worry; our child will go in good health and come back to us in good health. And your eyes will see him on the day when he comes back to you in good health. Do not worry! Do not fear for them, my sister. For a good angel will accompany him, and his journey will be successful, and he will come back in good health.” So she stopped weeping.

(Greek I, 5:17b-6:1)

Then he (Tobit) said to Tobias, “Get ready for the journey, and may you be successful.” So his son prepared the things for the journey. And his father said to him, “Go with the man, and God who dwells in heaven will make your journey successful, and may his angel go along with you.” So they went out to go away, and the young man’s dog with them.
But Hanna his mother wept and said to Tobit, “Why have you sent away our child? Is he not the rod of our hand as he goes in and goes out before us? Do not add silver to silver, but let it be a ransom for our child. For as it has been given to us to live by the Lord, that is enough for us.” And he said to her, “Do not worry, my sister; he will come back in good health, and your eyes will see him. For a good angel will go along with him; so his journey will be successful, and he will return in good health.” So she stopped weeping.]]

(Greek II, 10:1-7)

Now day by day Tobith was counting the days on which Tobias would need for going and for coming back. And when the days had been completed and his son did not appear, he said, “Perhaps he has been detained there? Or perhaps Gabael has died, and no one is giving him the silver?” And he began to grieve. Then Hanna his wife said, “My child has perished and is no longer among the living.” And she began to weep and mourn for her son, and she said, “Woe to me, my child, the light of my eyes, that I let you go!” But Tobith said to her, “Be quiet, and do not worry, my sister; he is in good health. And they probably had a distraction there. **Also the man who went with him is trustworthy and is one of our kindred. **Do not grieve for him, my sister; he will soon be here.” Then she said to him, “Be quiet; away from me! And stop deceiving me! My child has perished.” And she would rush out every day and watch the road on which her son had gone, and she would not believe anyone. And when the sun had set she would go in and mourn and weep the whole night and get no sleep.


#12

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