Skip to comments.Hatred, Bigotry and Truth in the Homosexuality and Same Sex Marriage Debate
Posted on 02/13/2013 4:00:29 AM PST by rhema
The Bibles teaching on human sexuality is clear: The only kind of sexual intimacy Scripture countenances exists between one man and one woman, within marriage. This teaching is restrictive, limiting, narrow. It also possesses the singular advantage of being accurate, in the sense of being a faithful representation of what the Bible says.
One need not agree with the Bible to acknowledge its clear teaching. Regarding efforts to diminish the Bibles teachings about homosexuality, specifically, former Benedictine monk Luke Timothy Johnson, now of Emory University, writes, I have little patience with efforts to make Scripture say something other than what it says, through appeals to linguistic or cultural subtleties. The exegetical situation is straightforward: we know what the text says.
The text says that heterosexual fornication and adultery, and homosexual intimacy, are sins against God and those who bear His image. Agree or disagree youre free to make that decision. But have the intellectual honesty not to engage in the almost comical expositional gymnastics required to make the Bible say something it doesnt.
Having read the above, many Americans will be dumbfounded: You mean there are people whose allegiance to an anachronistic collection of ancient writings which articulate an archaic moral code actually drives their thinking and behavior today?
Yes. Many intelligent, well-educated, independent-minded people have come to the conclusion that the 66 books of the Old and New Testaments uniquely reveal the mind, the will, and the plan of God for humankind. That their meaning is adequately clear to have propositional authority. That their teachings are not subject to reinterpretation contingent on popular culture or personal whim.
Is everything in the Bible easy to grasp or accept? No. Were it, the Scriptures themselves would not so candidly acknowledge the realities of doubt and unbelief. But the labor with which one comes to and sustains his faith produces good fruit, since yeah, here goes the Fundamentalist again the Bible is true.
This is important to understand for two reasons: First, Evangelical Protestants, faithful Catholics and orthodox Jews dont pick and choose their moral standards. We accept them, based on our belief in the divine inspiration of our written texts, and how we see them vindicated in human experience.
Second, our acceptance of these tenets is not merely intellectual. I affirm that the street outside my office is paved with black asphalt: This is the recognition of an obvious external reality, but one that does not animate my convictions about the purpose of life or the means by which I should live it. Unlike mere intellectual assent, since we believe our moral standards are issued by a God with Whom we have a relationship and to Whom we owe our core allegiance, we cannot keep them neatly confined to the space within our crania. In other words, we are obligated by our Creator not just to acknowledge the correctness of what He has said but to live accordingly. That means we reject homosexual behavior as morally acceptable. It means we also reject the numerous heterosexual sins, as well, including sexual infidelity to a spouse and intercourse before marriage. We also affirm that marriage is a covenant between one man and one woman, for life and that this definition is unchanging.
I know of no conservatives who wish to disrupt homosexual homes. We dont want to be invasive any more than we want to be coerced ourselves. But we reject the redefinition of marriage on theological grounds, as well as on a surfeit of sociological data showing that children benefit most by being raised by a mother and a father.
This is not bigotry. It is not hatred. It is not homophobia. It is, to quote one of my pastors, theophobia. We fear God, and thus we submit to what we believe is His revealed will. No one is requiring any homosexual to do anything. Catholics, Protestants and Jews who believe biblical morality is absolute and final are being asked to treat homosexuality as morally neutral behavior. Yet we do not believe it is, and thus cannot countenance its widespread social or legal acceptance any more than we accept heterosexual cohabitation.
No one is demanding that any homosexual become a heterosexual, or that homosexuals be in any way harmed, demeaned, or persecuted. To the contrary, true Christians should and do show the love of Christ to every image-bearer of God, whether that person is homosexual or heterosexual.
We simply believe that sexual intimacy is reserved by God for heterosexual, monogamous marriage. Thats inconvenient and difficult for many of us, heterosexual and homosexual. Its also what we believe the Word of God says. Therefore, for us it is determinative of not just belief but also practice. Coercion and repression are the signs of fascism. No one, in any sphere, is either coercing or repressing homosexual men and women. Rather, homosexual activists seek to shut-down those who believe their behavior is immoral. Raise a moral concern about homosexuality and immediately accusations of bigotry and hatred are showered upon you. The outraged viciousness of the response is commensurate with the intensity of ones allegiance to full cultural and legal affirmation of homosexuality. Since traditional believers wont change on this point, efforts are made to bully us into silence or reserve our beliefs for our homes and the four walls of our houses of worship. We are called names, are threatened in late-night phone calls, or, in the case of my colleagues and I at the Family Research Council, we become the intended targets of a would-be assassins bullets, as last summers shooting at our building demonstrates.
Persons of biblical faith who believe the Bible says what it means and look to it as the source of truth, not just comfort have no alternative but to stand with Scripture. For this, we are accused of a lack of love. Nonsense: There can be nothing more unloving, or more cowardly, than ignoring a train as it is about to strike someone on its tracks. If we warn against the consequences of sexual sin, whether heterosexual or homosexual, we do so not with self-righteous condemnation but sincere concern for those wrestling with such sins.
The homosexual left insists that everyone endorse same-sex relationships as morally and legally valid. We will not. They want to redefine marriage. We refuse. The want homosexuality to be affirmed universally as morally good or at least morally neutral. We cannot. They want full and affirming integration into every social institution, whether it be the military or the Boy scouts or, for that matter, churches of all kinds. We cannot support it.
This is not hate. Its moral conviction. It will not change.
Here we stand. We can do no other. God help us. Amen.
Bravo! Well said Sir!
What difference does it make???
20. Then the LORD said, "The outcry against Sodom and Gomorrah is so great and their sin so grievous
21. that I will go down and see if what they have done is as bad as the outcry that has reached me. If not, I will know."
4. Before they had gone to bed, all the men from every part of the city of Sodom--both young and old--surrounded the house.
5. They called to Lot, "Where are the men who came to you tonight? Bring them out to us so that we can have sex with them."
6. Lot went outside to meet them and shut the door behind him
7. and said, "No, my friends. Don't do this wicked thing.
Isaiah 3:9 The look on their faces testifies against them; they parade their sin like Sodom; they do not hide it. Woe to them! They have brought disaster upon themselves.
2 Peter 2:13b Their idea of pleasure is to carouse in broad daylight. They are blots and blemishes, reveling in their pleasures while they feast with you.
49. "`Now this was the sin of your sister Sodom: She and her daughters were arrogant, overfed and unconcerned; they did not help the poor and needy.
50. They were haughty and did detestable things before me. Therefore I did away with them as you have seen.
1. But there were also false prophets among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you. They will secretly introduce destructive heresies, even denying the sovereign Lord who bought them--bringing swift destruction on themselves.
2. Many will follow their shameful ways and will bring the way of truth into disrepute.
3. In their greed these teachers will exploit you with stories they have made up. Their condemnation has long been hanging over them, and their destruction has not been sleeping.
4. For if God did not spare angels when they sinned, but sent them to hell, putting them into gloomy dungeons to be held for judgment;
5. if he did not spare the ancient world when he brought the flood on its ungodly people, but protected Noah, a preacher of righteousness, and seven others;
6. if he condemned the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah by burning them to ashes, and made them an example of what is going to happen to the ungodly;
7. and if he rescued Lot, a righteous man, who was distressed by the filthy lives of lawless men
8. (for that righteous man, living among them day after day, was tormented in his righteous soul by the lawless deeds he saw and heard)--
9. if this is so, then the Lord knows how to rescue godly men from trials and to hold the unrighteous for the day of judgment, while continuing their punishment.
10. This is especially true of those who follow the corrupt desire of the sinful nature and despise authority. Bold and arrogant, these men are not afraid to slander celestial beings;
11. yet even angels, although they are stronger and more powerful, do not bring slanderous accusations against such beings in the presence of the Lord.
12. But these men blaspheme in matters they do not understand. They are like brute beasts, creatures of instinct, born only to be caught and destroyed, and like beasts they too will perish.
13. They will be paid back with harm for the harm they have done. Their idea of pleasure is to carouse in broad daylight. They are blots and blemishes, reveling in their pleasures while they feast with you.
But there IS hope!!!
1 Corinthians 6:9-11
9. Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived:
Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders
10. nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.
11. And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.
If you could NOT change, you would be in most pitiful shape...
Well, you haven't been around much. I'm weary of these endless paeans to political correctness qualifying otherwise-good analysis.
Luke Timothy Johnson is one of the teachers working for the Teaching Company in their Great Courses program. He teaches a series on Christianity that you can get on CD or DVD that is exceptional.
BTW, Luke Timothy Johnson believes that great gains and leadership in the Christian Church in the future will come from third world countries. Great course.
Excellent. Should be printed in every newspaper & a mandatory read for all!
Future Bill Whittle youtube material ping?
Yes, very well said. You should expect to see death threats in the near future by some of the more tolerant, enlightened citizens.
Funny you mention Whittle, I quote him in the final chapter of the book - and he does great work, though I’ve not seen any that stress the social issues.
Well said. Amen and amen!
men. God is good. Amen