Monday, October 7, 2013

Ten Great Insults: Bible Style

     If you watch TV today, you might have noticed that many characters have gotten a little lax when it comes to insults. With the plethora of vulgar language now in vogue, it's as if the art of insults has been degrading to two or three choice (and very overused) phrases.

     Would that we could go back to Bible times, when insults were wide and varied! So if you're tired of the same old vulgarities, here are the top ten biblical insults I've found in the pages of my own Word of God. I was going to use the King James version, but seeing as how some of the verses had to deal with donkeys, well, I didn't want to really offend anybody...

10) You are a flat cake not turned over (Hosea 7:8). It's uniqueness as an insult notwithstanding, you're probably not going to convey the original intent of this verse to a modern-day audience. Perhaps the contemporary equivalent would translate better as "You're a Subway sandwich with the bread over-toasted."

9) A quarrelsome wife is like the constant dripping of a leaky roof (Proverbs 19:13). Its biting intent perhaps overshadowed by its overuse, this insult still definitely manages to convey the annoying tendencies of a nagging wife. Spouses ... be warned!

8) Brood of vipers! (various NT verses) Again, this insult isn't quite as effective anymore, simply because we've all heard it so often. But if anyone has a significant fear of snakes, I imagine you can still see its charming impact (no pun intended). 

7) Their tongue is an open grave (Romans 3:13). I've heard some biting insults about bad breath, but none quite like this.

 6) You son of a perverse and rebellious woman! (1 Samuel 20:30) Spoken in a fit of anger by King Saul to his own son, Jonathan, this insult is a little more creative than its (very overused) contemporary counterpart. (And it would get by television censors to boot!)
5) My little finger is thicker than my father's waist (1 Kings 12:10). Speaking of censorship, the NIV tones down their translation quite a bit. The King James says, my little finger is thicker than my father's loins. In other words, Rehoboam is saying that his pinky is "thicker" than his father's ... um ... maybe we should just stick with waist...
4) Go castrate yourself. Ok, this isn't a direct biblical quote. The exact translation is "As for those agitators, I wish they would go the whole way and emasculate themselves!" (Galatians 5:12). Let's hope for these "agitators'" sake that Paul never got his wish.

3) You were unlike a prostitute, because you scorned payment (Ezekiel 16:38). Not the kind of comment I'm guessing you want to hear spoken to your mother or sister.

2)  There she lusted after her lovers, whose genitals were like those of donkeys and whose emission was like that of horses (Ezekiel 23:20). No. Commentary. Needed.

1) You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of the bones of the dead and everything unclean (Matthew 23:17). It shouldn't be surprising that the award for best insult goes to Jesus himself. Let's just hope none of us hear him say those words about ourselves!


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  1. Regarding 2: *gag, gag* Did you HAVE to include it? Wouldn't one, or several, of the various psalms and proverbs implying how stupid some things are have been sufficient? How about the fat, complacent cows verse? Or the numerous times Jesus said "go learn what this means" to a Pharisee? Or even passage-based insults, like "you daughters of Lot" or " Siserical chauvinist" or "Hamanly bigot"?