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January 19, 2012

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That is one of the most common yet poor arguments offered by pro-gay theologians. Pro-legalized abortionists use the same tactic.

Here's my standard short-version response to them: Arguing from silence is a logical fallacy, Jesus is God and God inspired all scripture, He supported the Old Testament law to the last letter, the "red letters" weren't silent on these topics in the sense that they reiterated what marriage and murder were, He emphasized many other important issues that these liberal theologians completely ignore (Hell, his divinity, his exclusivity, etc.), He was equally "silent" on issues that these folks treat as having the utmost importance (capital punishment, war, welfare, universal health care, etc.), He didn't specifically mention child abuse and other obvious sins though that wouldn't justify them, and abortion and homosexual behavior simply weren't hot topics for 1st century Jews.

Other than that, they have a terrific argument.

Jesus never said homosexuality was good or true. Jesus never said marriage was between anything other than a man and woman. If we are going with what Jesus didn't say lets start there.

Ah, can you please say that again?

Jesus never said anything about Homosexuality? No. But look a little more carefully. He made clear that there was one legitimate outlet for sexual desires. Marriage.

I don't mean to be a stickler, but I think the Levitical passage prohibiting Homosexual Behavior is found in Leviticus 18:22 not 18:20...just in case people were to read that and think, "that doesn't say anything about homosexual behavior"

To address the post, Christ called and set apart and gave authority for His apostles to speak in His name, as His representatives on earth, and several have spoken on the evils of homosexual behavior. For example:
bring them out unto us, that we may know them, Gen. 19:5
Thou shalt not lie with mankind … it is abomination, Lev. 18:22 (Lev. 20:13).
There shall be no … sodomite of the sons of Israel, Deut. 23:17
declare their sin as Sodom, Isa. 3:9 (2 Ne. 13:9).
men … burned in their lust one toward another, Rom. 1:27
nor abusers of themselves with mankind, 1 Cor. 6:9
them that defile themselves with mankind, 1 Tim. 1:10
as Sodom and Gomorrha … going after strange flesh, Jude 1:7
doth declare their sin to be even as Sodom, 2 Ne. 13:9
See also Gen. 13:13; Gen. 18:20; Isa. 3:9; Ezek. 16:50; 2 Tim. 3:3; 2 Pet. 2:10; 2 Ne. 9:40.

"Whether by [His] voice, or by the voice of [His] servants, it is the same."

"it’s clear what Jesus would have said about homosexuality if asked. Jesus was an observant Jew who, like all Jews living under the Old Covenant, was bound by the Mosaic Law."

No force in the world could compel me to get into a public debate on homosexuality as such. Nobody gets out of that mud pit smelling like a rose.

That said, the quote here is dynamite of the worst sort. It's not only dangerous to imagine that we can speak for God (and by your syllogism regarding Jesus and God, that is precisely what we'd be doing), but obviously problematic in context.

Consider what Jesus said about divorce--that Mosaic law allowed it because our hearts were hard, but he forbade it save under very particular circumstances (ones which would annul the marriage, in effect). He likewise didn't exactly support Mosaic law when they brought before him the woman caught in adultery.

If Jesus were just a mouthpiece for Moses, then why have an Incarnation?

Again, this isn't a point just about homosexuality--I agree on the bottom line point that pretty much the *only* kind of sexuality that Jesus endorses is in the context of a committed, God-centered marriage.

Anything else may range from Hell-worthy abomination to "permitted, but not beneficial" as Paul put it. I may be able to 'get away with' a certain amount of carnality with my girlfriend, for example, but that certainly doesn't make it something that God smiles upon.

That God lets certain things slide beneath his contempt is not a sigil of his approval, though. It's a corollary function of his love and justice. We're so faulty, so broken, that it would frankly be unfair to smite us every time we couldn't accomplish what truly pleases the Creator.

All this is true, and even if you held on to an atheist or homosexual long enough to listen to all that, he still will respond with "but Jesus never said anything about homosexuality".

So skip all that and say: You have hear Jesus say that He did not come to abolish the Law or the Prophets but to fulfill them, and the Law states that it is abomination for man to have sex with man. You know it's not natural, think back to your first time, it was very painful, and it did not feel good right.

Now, hit em with the Gospel, and make sure it's the Gospel that glorifies Jesus Christ.

DC Evangelist,

From what I hear, quite a few married women who were virgins on their honeymoon said that the first time was "very painful" and "didn't feel good." Doesn't mean it was or wasn't proper. Just means they weren't much good at it yet.

Not to mention the hypothetical anti-Christian's obvious response is "So how would *you* know what it's like having gay sex for the first time?"

Best of luck trying to completely rewire someone's core cognitive matrix in a single conversation.

He also never said anything about bestiality or identity theft.

I don't remember anything about using communion wine to distribute the cure to a genetically engineered plague released to bring on the apocolypse.

I'm sure that it wouldn't buy many points.

Did anyone ask?

My understanding, and it is from a lay reader and not a professional scholar, is male-male homosexuality in the Greek world was mostly adult-boy, and thus it was seen as much of a power relationship. If you were not the dominant (man) then you were submissive ( boy), and the I have heard that much of the issues stated were in regards to the extreme power difference that society assumed to exist in this relationship and the suggestion that such of a submission to another man was seen as quite undignified.

However, not being a scholar, I stand to be corrected.

Arthur,

You're about half-right. The most well-known form of male-male homosexuality was indeed pederasty, and it had an interesting cultural niche, especially amongst the educated and elite classes. Socrates was alleged (albeit mostly apocryphally) to have disdained the practice, but that's possibly because later scholars found him such a virtuous pagan that they wanted him to be better than his degenerate brethren. Or maybe he really was, who knows?

The extreme power difference you're talking about, though, was more of a Roman issue. There, the dominant male was considered not to lose any of what we might call his 'macho', whereas the other fellow was effeminized and diminished by his role. Then again, *everything* in Rome was about dominance and submission.

But being atop or on bottom of the pecking order, if you'll pardon the term, wouldn't have any bearing on Christian though, I don't imagine. The real hiccup in the ancient world was that they recognized homosexuality as being a vice. It was a bit degenerate or unwholesome (even to a culture that pretty much embraced such things) somewhat like we'd see smoking or drunkenness; a socially distasteful sensual pleasure which was not conducive to virtue, or constructive in any meaningful way.

Now, some of the Greeks prized these relationships. The Spartans, say, famously thought that male lovers would fight harder to impress one another. Not to mention, on a practical note, if your soldiers were shacking up with one another, it kept you from having to bring along so many 'camp followers'. Sparta always had a thing for efficiency, even if it was at the cost of decency (see also: infant exposure).

Suffice to say, the ancient world had a much more nuanced outlook on homosexuality than most non-academics of today, and a much more pragmatic one than you'll see in the ivory tower.

I would like to recommend for your consideration "The Bible and Homosexual Practice: Texts and Hermeneutics By Dr. Robert Gagnon".
You can find one of the video's that He has done here. http://vimeo.com/2126309
There are three that I have found and I think that all three are based on His book. Blessing's

The only man ever taken to heaven without dying (Enoch) has never had his writings in the cannonization of the bible, why because man choose what is included. I bet almost 85 Percent of sunday goers have never heard of that man as well. Why because the men that selected what books were to be put in the bible did not include all writings and accounts. Do the research I bet you can find other writings about Homosexuals there

Guy,

You make quite a number of assertions without providing any evidence or reasons other than more assertions. Below are a just couple of questions that come to mind. I'd be curious as to your thoughts.

1. What were Enoch's writings?
2. Why should they have been included in the OT?
3. What is your understanding of the criteria for inclusion (or exclusion) into the OT?
4. Are you suggesting that a different criteria should be used? If so, why would your criteria be better?

Thanks.


Yeah, Guy.

Please respond. I wanna hear this one.

The Book of Enoch?

Wasn't that like the The DaVinci Code of it's day?

I started reading it. I think you can find some YouTube videos that will read it to you.

Beware of the Watchers ( or the Anunnaki).

Wasn't the Book of Enoch in Vampire: the Masquerade? Or is that the Book of Nod? Something to do with the Curse of Caine making him the first vampire, and some kinda city of the undead, and all those Assyrian god-kings really being the undead.

Also, little brainteaser for the heck of it. If only books written by men who were taken directly into heaven are infallible (I'm inferring that's what you mean as your criterion for being God-chosen), then how do we know Enoch was taken directly into Heaven? Did he mail a copy of his book back from beyond the Pearly Gates?

Joseph,

Thanks for that link, BTW. I found the video interesting and informative.

Thank you for a great article! Jesus asked for us to love our neighbors as we love ourselves. Perhaps, that is where the hurt begins and where the healing could "end". Many of us do not love ourselves, not even a little bit. There are certain filters and experiences that many have had that cloud what true unconditional love really is. Just take Jesus' outlook. Why did He really "come here for" in the first place. He loves us so much, He takes us as we are, yet He loves us even more, not to leave us the same... no matter what "condition" we are in when He finds us. Homosexual or Heterosexual. Drug Addict or Alcoholic. Thief or Murderer. Adulterer or Fornicator. Lier or Prostitute. I love Jesus and I believe His heart is for you to give Him yours first. Then, as you do this, He will show you the way. No one else, male-friend, or female-friend, is more qualified to do so. He died so you could know.

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