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What Does the Bible Say about Laying with Dogs?

What Does the Bible Say about Laying with Dogs?

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As a Christian dog owner, how far should your intimacy with your pet go?

Is it okay for your affection to include sexual relations or bestiality?

This is an important question as bestiality is spreading and Christian values are under constant assault.

The Kinsey Reports, for instance, states that 5-8% of people engage in bestiality with the figures being even higher in rural areas at 40- 50%.

Although widely considered to be a perversion in most cultures and illegal in many places, bestiality is increasingly embraced especially through the internet.

For most of these illicit relations, the animal partner that is chosen for intercourse is the dog. 

Old Testament Laws Forbidding Sex with Dogs  

There are 4 instances in the bible that condemns sex with animals. The verses don’t mention dogs in particular but cover all animals in general. 

  • Exodus 22:19 prescribes the death penalty by stating “Whoever lies with an animal shall be put to death.” 
  • Leviticus 18:23 describes bestiality as a perversion which is an act that is unnatural or goes against nature: “And you shall not lie with any animal and so make yourself unclean with it, neither shall any woman give herself to an animal to lie with it: it is a perversion.”
  • Leviticus 20:15-16 goes further to state the fate of the animal that is involved in bestiality.  “If a man lies with an animal, he shall surely be put to death, and you shall kill the animal. If a woman approaches any animal and lies with it, you shall kill the woman and the animal; they shall surely be put to death; their blood is upon them.”

Even though the animal is not the perpetrator, it suffers the penalty which reflects the seriousness of the crime and the fact that both the perpetrator and the animal become unclean. 

  • Deuteronomy 27:21 adds a curse to the offense: “Cursed be anyone who lies with any kind of animal.”

There are no recorded episodes in the Old Testament of bestiality or an actual offender.

Perhaps the act was so rare or totally absent reflecting the extent to which it was held as a taboo. 

What Did Other Cultures Say About Laying with Dogs?

It’s interesting to contrast the Bible’s bestiality laws with those of other contemporary and neighboring cultures.  

So far the only record that has been found is a collection of Hittite laws, said to date from 1650 to 1500 BCE.

Hittites are mentioned in the Bible as adversaries with whom Israel frequently clashed in battle.

Regarded as heathen by the Israelites, they were an Indo-European people living in Anatolia or what is now Central Turkey. 

The relevant Hittite laws on bestiality are four, which have been numbered 87, 188, 199, and 200a.

Unlike Israel’s bestiality laws, Hittite laws single out rules for specific animals which differ.

They permit sex with some animals while outlawing others.

For example, sex with cows, sheep, pigs, and dogs was an offense that was punished with death.

Sex with horses or mules however was not an offense. 

What does the New Testament Say?

Bible Verses about Dogs in Heaven

Given that the New Testament phases out many Old Testament rules (e.g. circumcisions, animal sacrifices, etc.), does it also relax laws on bestiality?

There is no mention of bestiality in the New Testament.

However, it strongly admonishes sexual immorality or any sex that lies outside marriage. 

For example, the Apostle Paul states in 1 Corinthians 6:18-19:

“Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin[e] a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body. 19 Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God?”

Given this emphatic statement in sexual relations, it’s clear that bestiality or sex with dogs is not condoned in the New Testament.

Adam and the Animals 

When God brought all his newly created animals to Adam for naming, he uses the event to establish which animals are compatible as sexual partners to human beings.

Out of all the animals he had named, Adam could not find any that was suitable as a mate.

This prompted God to create a woman, another human, who became acceptable to him. 

Final Verdict

We live in a hyper-sexed age where moral relativism runs rampant and no absolutes are applied to sexual relations.

Societal changes are pushing the boundaries so that sex with dogs or other animals is a troubling trend.

For dog owners, the best antidote is the cautionary words of the Bible. 

Other Posts You May Enjoy:

Is It A Sin To Own A Dog?

Bible Verses about Dogs in Heaven

Did Jesus Have a Dog?

Is it a Sin to Kill a Dog?

Why did God Make Dogs’ Lives So Short?

What is the Power of the Dog in the Bible?