Exodus 22 Wasn't it a case of rape?
“If a man seduces a virgin who is not engaged to anyone and has sex
with her, he must pay the customary bride price and marry her. 17But
if her father refuses to let him marry her, the man must still pay him
an amount equal to the bride price of a virgin.
Deuteronomy 22:28-29 (NASB)
28 “If a man finds a girl who is a virgin, who is not engaged, and
seizes her and lies with her and they are discovered, 29 then the man
who lay with her shall give to the girl’s father fifty shekels of
silver, and she shall become his wife because he has violated her; he
cannot divorce her all his days.
How was this different from rape?
It is a case of rape whether it is by seduction or seizure, the end result was the same. The serpent seduced Eve by its cunning, Adam was not, yet they both sinned. The same Law penalty applied for Exodus 22:16-17 (seduction) and Deuteronomy 22:28-29 (seizure)
Exodus 22:16-17 and Deuteronomy 22:28-29 show that it is premarital fornication, they had to get married and there was no divorce option in such cases. Since there was no longer a divorce option available, this probably would cause a man or a woman to resist in the temptation of sharing in fornication.
A man or woman may feel that she/he is beautiful/handsome and so I will have a good time even though she/he is not the type I want to marry. In this way, the Law deterred immorality by causing any would-be offender to weigh the long-term consequences of fornication of having to stay with the other party throughout his life.
The Law also lessened the problem of illegitimacy. God decreed:
Deuteronomy 23:2 (NASB)
2 No one of illegitimate birth shall enter the assembly of the Lord;
none of his descendants, even to the tenth generation, shall enter the
assembly of the Lord.
Hence if a man who seduced a virgin had to marry her, their fornication would not result in an illegitimate offspring among the Israelites.
If a man seduced an unengaged virgin, he had to take her as his wife; even if the father flatly refused to give her to him, he had to pay her father the purchase price for virgins (50 shekels -approx USD 120 ) the usual bride-price, because her diminished value as a bride would now have to be compensated for. This is so because not many Israelites would want to marry her.