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Deuteronomy 23:17

17 No Israelite man or woman is to become a shrine prostitute.

Read Deuteronomy 23:17 Using Other Translations

There shall be no whore of the daughters of Israel, nor a sodomite of the sons of Israel.
"None of the daughters of Israel shall be a cult prostitute, and none of the sons of Israel shall be a cult prostitute.
“No Israelite, whether man or woman, may become a temple prostitute.

What does Deuteronomy 23:17 mean?

John Gill's Exposition of the Bible
Deuteronomy 23:17

There shall be no whore of the daughters of Israel
The word for "whore" is "kedeshah", which properly signifies an "holy" one; and here, by an antiphrasis, an unholy, an impure person, one that is defiled by man; (See Gill on Genesis 38:18). Jarchi interprets the word, one that makes herself common, that is sanctified, or set apart; that is, one that separates herself for such service, and prostitutes herself to everyone that passes by: but some understand this not of common harlots in the streets, but of sacred whores, or such as were consecrated to Heathen deities, as such there were to Venus. Strabo F24 tells us that the temple of Venus at Corinth was so rich, that more than a thousand of those sacred harlots were kept, whom men and women had devoted to that goddess; and so a multitude of the same sort were at Comana, which he calls little Corinth F25; now these of all harlots being the most abominable are forbidden to be among the daughters of Israel:

nor a sodomite of the sons of Israel:
by the same rule that "kedeshah" is rendered "a whore" in the preceding clause, "kadesh" should be rendered "an whoremonger" here, as in the Septuagint and Vulgate Latin versions; though Aben Ezra interprets it passively, one that is lain with, and Jarchi one that is prepared to lie with a male, that prostitutes his body in this unnatural way; and it looks as if there were such sort of persons sacred to idols, since we read of the houses of the sodomites, which were by, or rather in the house of the Lord, ( 2 Kings 23:7 ) .


FOOTNOTES:

F24 Geograph. l. 8. p. 261.
F25 lb. l. 12. p. 385.
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