Uncensored Bible: The Bawdy and Naughty Bits of the Good Book


We all know the story of how Eve was created from Adam's rib. But what if, perhaps, "rib" was a mistranslation and the body part she was really created from was Adam's penis bone? This would explain why human males don't have such a bone, unlike other male mammals. That's only one of many surprising and fun biblical twists readers will encounter in The Uncensored Bible. Here readers will learn that King David swore like a sailor, mandrakes were the biblical equivalent of Viagra®, Cain was depressed, and Joseph's ...

See more details below
Paperback (Reprint)
BN.com price
(Save 8%)$13.99 List Price
Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (19) from $1.99   
  • New (8) from $5.68   
  • Used (11) from $1.99   
The Uncensored Bible

Available on NOOK devices and apps  
  • NOOK Devices
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 NOOK 7.0
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 NOOK 10.1
  • NOOK HD Tablet
  • NOOK HD+ Tablet
  • NOOK eReaders
  • NOOK Color
  • NOOK Tablet
  • Tablet/Phone
  • NOOK for Windows 8 Tablet
  • NOOK for iOS
  • NOOK for Android
  • NOOK Kids for iPad
  • PC/Mac
  • NOOK for Windows 8
  • NOOK for PC
  • NOOK for Mac
  • NOOK for Web

Want a NOOK? Explore Now

NOOK Book (eBook)
BN.com price


We all know the story of how Eve was created from Adam's rib. But what if, perhaps, "rib" was a mistranslation and the body part she was really created from was Adam's penis bone? This would explain why human males don't have such a bone, unlike other male mammals. That's only one of many surprising and fun biblical twists readers will encounter in The Uncensored Bible. Here readers will learn that King David swore like a sailor, mandrakes were the biblical equivalent of Viagra®, Cain was depressed, and Joseph's "coat of many colors" might have actually been a dress (which may explain why his brothers picked on him).

Authors Kaltner, McKenzie, and Kilpatrick bring some of the most outrageous speculations about the scriptures to light—all based on legitimate scholarship—revealing a stranger, bawdier side of the Good Book. The Uncensored Bible is a shocking, hilarious, and thought-provoking collection of the most recent, compelling, and racy interpretations of the Bible from the newest voices of Bible scholarship.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Time Magazine
God’s Word on Sex.
Publishers Weekly

In this unexpectedly delightful (if juvenile) little book, two Bible professors and a journalist unpack some of the more outrageous interpretations of the Hebrew Bible, focusing on juicy tales of sex, dysfunctional families and body parts. What if Eve was not made from Adam's rib bone but, as one biblical scholar has suggested, his penis bone? (Don't laugh this theory away until you've read the chapter.) Despite taking on serious questions of biblical interpretation and Hebrew translations, the authors maintain a tongue-in-cheek demeanor as they address questions like "Did Abraham pimp Sarah?" "Did Ruth and Boaz have a roll in the hay on the threshing floor?" and "Was Joseph a cross-dresser?" (Answers: yes, maybe, and probably not.) One chapter proposes that the assassin Ehud (Judges 3) escaped King Eglon's rooftop after murdering him by slipping down through Eglon's latrine. Some of the authors' conclusions are a stretch, but it's always in good fun. This is perfect bathroom reading, and PWmeans that in the best possible way. (June)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Jonathan L. Reed
“Based on the best contemporary scholarship of the Bible—but funny as hell! The Uncensored Bible finally reveals what your Sunday School teacher was afraid to tell you or did not know.”
Religion News Service
[The Uncensored Bible] makes for some interesting (not to mention steamy) reading. Euphemism, puns and sarcasm abound.
God’s Word on Sex.
USA Today
Good-natured ribbing of the Good Book . . .scholars give scripture a ‘bawdy’ spin”
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780061238857
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 6/23/2009
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 224
  • Sales rank: 613,734
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 7.30 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

John Kaltner is an associate professor of religious studies at Rhodes College, where he teaches courses on the Bible, Islam, and Arabic. He is the author of several books, including Ishmael Instructs Isaac: An Introduction to the Qur'an for Bible Readers and The Old Testament: Its Background, Growth, and Content, which he co-wrote with Steven L. McKenzie. He lives in Memphis, Tennessee.

Steven L. McKenzie is professor of Hebrew Bible and Old Testament at Rhodes College. He is a co-leader of the Middle East Travel Seminar, which tours Syria, Jordan, the Sinai, Israel, and Greece each spring. He has written and edited many books, including King David: A Biography and How to Read the Bible. He lives in Memphis, Tennessee.

Joel Kilpatrick is an award-winning reporter and creator of LarkNews.com, the world's leading Christian satire website, which received the 2005 Gospel Music Association's Grady Nutt Humor Award. His work has been featured in Time, the Washington Post, the Dallas Morning News, and on CBS Radio. He lives with his wife and family in the Los Angeles area.

Read More Show Less

Read an Excerpt

The Uncensored Bible
The Bawdy and Naughty Bits of the Good Book

Chapter One

Which "Bone" Was Eve Made From?

As famous as some Hollywood couples are, nobody can approach the fame of Adam and Eve, Earth's original celebrity couple. Almost everybody knows about Adam and Eve, even if they know nothing else about the Bible.

But a lot of people, Bible readers included, don't know that Eve's origins may have been quite different from what many of us learned in Sunday school. In fact, the true explanation for where Eve came from may be as scandalous as a tabloid headline ("Eve's Shocking Past!"). We'll get to that, but first, let's have a look at the traditional story most people know.

The biblical account of creation is told in the second chapter of the Book of Genesis, which describes how God made the earth and heavens and then planted an idyllic, tree-filled nature park—the Garden of Eden. This Garden apparently was the "it" place on planet Earth. Adam and Eve would hang out there, as would an assortment of amazing creatures, including a talking snake. God would even drop by in the evenings to liven up the party. In fact, Adam and Eve had a pretty good deal overall. They owned an entire planet (and paid no property taxes on it). The only requirements God placed on them were to (1) have sex and (2) hold down fairly easy gardening and animal husbandry jobs. They blew it, of course, but that's another story.

Let's go back a little further, to Adam's origins. God created the Garden of Eden, then formed the first man, Adam, from the ground, as a potter would form a vessel out of clay, and placed him in the Gardento take care of it. But at some point God appears to have decided that having one human being around, and nobody with whom that human could share his silly little observations, was a recipe for loneliness and depression. "It is not good for the man to be alone," God said, according to Genesis, so God took some mud, as he had done with Adam, and created other dirt creatures to be the man's companions. But these newbies were animals, not humans. God organized them into a pet parade, brought them before Adam, and invited him to name them. But as entertaining as this exotic animal collection no doubt was, none of the creatures suited Adam's need for a soul mate, a colleague, or even a drinking buddy. He was stuck with his loneliness problem, and no MySpace, eHarmony, or Prozac to turn to. He had a dog (and a lion, and a giraffe . . .), but he still didn't have a best friend.

So God administered the world's first anesthesia and put Adam into a deep sleep so God could perform surgery. While Adam was under, God removed one of his ribs, as the traditional story goes. From that rib, God then made the first woman, Eve, and brought her to the man. Adam's response upon seeing her, according to the Bible, was, "Bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh," which can also be translated from the Hebrew as, "Va-va-va-voom!" He called her "Wo-man," a play on words, because she was taken from man and was a lot like him except in some key, very attractive regards. The story adds a postscript, explaining that this is the reason why a man leaves his parents and is united with his wife so that they become one flesh. Keep that postscript and that word "flesh" in mind. They will help us to see what this passage really might be saying.

Problems with the Traditional Interpretation

The traditional version of the story is accurate to the text except for one important detail. Though for centuries the term "Adam's rib" has been used in sermons, commentaries, and film titles (see "Spencer Tracy and Katharine Hepburn, films of"), the original Genesis story does not necessarily mention a rib. The Hebrew word for the body part that God takes from Adam is tsela. But this word never means "rib" anywhere else in the Bible. It usually means "side," as in the side of a hill1 or the side of a structure like the ark of the covenant,2 the tabernacle,3 or an altar.4 In architecture, it refers to a side room or cell.5 It is also used for the planks or boards in a building wall6 and for rafters or ceiling beams.7 The common idea in all these different meanings seems to be that of a tangent or branch extending out from a central structure or body. Given this basic sense, Adam's tsela would seem to refer to a "limb" or "appendage"—something that jutted out from his body.

So where did the "Adam's rib" interpretation come from? The answer is the Septuagint. The Septua-what? The Septuagint (sep-too-a-jent) is the name of the Greek translation of the Hebrew Bible that was done in the third century bce. The Septuagint translated the Hebrew word tsela with the Greek word pleura, which means "side" or "rib." (It's the word from which we get "pleurisy," an inflammation in the lining of the lung. Isn't that pleasant?)

Another problem with the traditional translation of tsela as "rib" is that it doesn't serve the etiological agenda of the Genesis passage. Yes, we just used the word "etiological." We're not smarter than you, we just hang around words like this for a living because we're college professors. An etiology is simply a story that explains the origin of something. It may explain a biological fact, a geological formation, a social custom, or the like. The story of Adam and Eve is full of etiologies. The very name "Adam" means "man/human," and "Eve" means "life." The story explains where humans came from. It also explains such things as why snakes crawl, why people wear clothes, and why women have labor pains. The reference to a man leaving his parents to join with his wife is an etiology for marriage.

The Uncensored Bible
The Bawdy and Naughty Bits of the Good Book
. Copyright © by John Kaltner. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star


4 Star


3 Star


2 Star


1 Star


Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation


  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted May 12, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:


    An excellent read that will keep you smiling or your mouth hanging open. The authors sound like two roommates who bounce ideas off each other and write in a style that best gets the ideas across and keeps the reader engaged with the book. The book itself is absolutely hilarious. Some of the points made are completely valid and gives the reader something to think about. Many different professional viewpoints are provided from various academics and biblical scholars and the authors do an excellent job of examining both sides of a claim. As soon as I read this book, I gave it to a friend of mine whose father is a pastor, she absolutely loved it. People of all faiths will enjoy this book. Personally, my two favorite stories in this are What Rib Was Eve Created From?, and What Eglon Was Doing When He Died. Read it and pass it along.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)