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My Take: The Christian case for gay marriage
The author backs same-sex marriage because of his faith, not in spite of it.
May 19th, 2012
02:00 AM ET

My Take: The Christian case for gay marriage

Editor's Note: Mark Osler is a Professor of Law at the University of St. Thomas in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

By Mark Osler, Special to CNN

I am a Christian, and I am in favor of gay marriage. The reason I am for gay marriage is because of my faith.

What I see in the Bible’s accounts of Jesus and his followers is an insistence that we don’t have the moral authority to deny others the blessing of holy institutions like baptism, communion, and marriage. God, through the Holy Spirit, infuses those moments with life, and it is not ours to either give or deny to others.

A clear instruction on this comes from Simon Peter, the “rock” on whom the church is built. Peter is a captivating figure in the Christian story. Jesus plucks him out of a fishing boat to become a disciple, and time and again he represents us all in learning at the feet of Christ.

During their time together, Peter is often naïve and clueless – he is a follower, constantly learning.

After Jesus is crucified, though, a different Peter emerges, one who is forceful and bold. This is the Peter we see in the Acts of the Apostles, during a fevered debate over whether or not Gentiles should be baptized. Peter was harshly criticized for even eating a meal with those who were uncircumcised; that is, those who did not follow the commands of the Old Testament.

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Peter, though, is strong in confronting those who would deny the sacrament of baptism to the Gentiles, and argues for an acceptance of believers who do not follow the circumcision rules of Leviticus (which is also where we find a condemnation of homosexuality).

His challenge is stark and stunning: Before ordering that the Gentiles be baptized Peter asks “Can anyone withhold the water for baptizing these people who have received the Holy Spirit just as we have?”

None of us, Peter says, has the moral authority to deny baptism to those who seek it, even if they do not follow the ancient laws. It is the flooding love of the Holy Spirit, which fell over that entire crowd, sinners and saints alike, that directs otherwise.

My Take: Bible doesn’t condemn homosexuality

It is not our place, it seems, to sort out who should be denied a bond with God and the Holy Spirit of the kind that we find through baptism, communion, and marriage. The water will flow where it will.

Intriguingly, this rule will apply whether we see homosexuality as a sin or not. The water is for all of us. We see the same thing at the Last Supper, as Jesus gives the bread and wine to all who are there—even to Peter, who Jesus said would deny him, and to Judas, who would betray him.

The question before us now is not whether homosexuality is a sin, but whether being gay should be a bar to baptism or communion or marriage.

Your Take: Rethinking the Bible on homosexuality

The answer is in the Bible. Peter and Jesus offer a strikingly inclusive form of love and engagement. They hold out the symbols of Gods’ love to all. How arrogant that we think it is ours to parse out stingily!

I worship at St. Stephens, an Episcopal church in Edina, Minnesota. There is a river that flows around the back and side of that church with a delightful name: Minnehaha Creek. That is where we do baptisms.

The Rector stands in the creek in his robes, the cool water coursing by his feet, and takes an infant into his arms and baptizes her with that same cool water. The congregation sits on the grassy bank and watches, a gentle army.

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At the bottom of the creek, in exactly that spot, is a floor of smooth pebbles. The water rushing by has rubbed off the rough edges, bit by bit, day by day. The pebbles have been transformed by that water into something new.

I suppose that, as Peter put it, someone could try to withhold the waters of baptism there. They could try to stop the river, to keep the water from some of the stones, like a child in the gutter building a barrier against the stream.

It won’t last, though. I would say this to those who would withhold the water of baptism, the joy of worship, or the bonds of marriage: You are less strong than the water, which will flow around you, find its path, and gently erode each wall you try to erect.

The redeeming power of that creek, and of the Holy Spirit, is relentless, making us all into something better and new.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Mark Osler.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Christianity • Episcopal • Gay marriage • Opinion

soundoff (15,115 Responses)
  1. Bob

    Tom stop doing the cut and paste thing on all the people. I don't know why CNN didn't stop you all together

    June 18, 2012 at 6:59 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      The only thing I've ever cut and pasted has been your own idiotic words. What the eff are you babbling about, you ninny?

      June 18, 2012 at 7:44 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Why would you imagine CNN would "stop" my quoting you, idiot? Really, how do you figure out how to tie your own shoes?

      June 18, 2012 at 7:45 pm |
    • Jen

      Looks like Bob thought that was an actual CNN moderator that came on a couple of days ago and said he/she was going to cut Tom Tom off. Poor Bob, going a little senile in his old age....

      June 18, 2012 at 7:51 pm |
    • SB

      Jen your remarks are fairly cruel to someone you have never met. Tom Tom's comments were reported as abuse to CNN. They chose not to remove him....unfortunately for everyone. Its ok Bob, you are the only intelligent one on this blog most of the time

      June 19, 2012 at 1:16 am |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      SB, you're another sock puppet, and you are as stupid as ever.

      June 19, 2012 at 7:33 am |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Trolls like SB are just SALT and Green Pee and Bob under yet another name. Too bad you have to resort to lies when you can't come up with answers.

      June 19, 2012 at 7:35 am |
  2. Bob

    So far all any of you has done is qoute the psychs I would like to see some studies.

    June 18, 2012 at 6:52 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      And all you've done is quote the bible and discredited studies. You keep claiming you can provide cites for studies that show what you would like to believe, but you have yet to follow through. So put up or shut up.

      June 18, 2012 at 7:51 pm |
    • Bob

      So lets see them. your the liar if you cant show them.

      June 18, 2012 at 8:05 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Why? You've been shown where to look for them and you don't accept what the psychiatrists and psychologists have to say. Why bother citing anything? It's not as if you can understand any of the words, Bob.

      June 18, 2012 at 8:06 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      After all, you can't even figure out how apostrophes work.

      June 18, 2012 at 8:07 pm |
    • Jen

      Or the difference between you're and your. Oh I forgot....his secretaries do that for him...

      June 18, 2012 at 8:10 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      But apparently Bob's too shy to ask them to do his research for him on this particular subject...

      June 18, 2012 at 8:31 pm |
  3. TC

    Folks like Bob are good at religious talking points, but never discuss alternatives.

    If gay people are not supposed to fall in love, why did God give us the ability? If we are not supposed to form families, why send us soulmates to light our days? If we are not supposed to share in any normal human interractions, why then do we feel as everyone else does, and need the same things in our lives?

    Does he believe that God is just a sick and vicious prankster, waiting to yell GOTCHA when we live and love as others do?

    We can't stop being gay, any more that Bob can stop being straight, so are we just supposed to do, die? Hide? Limit needed contact with others? Live alone? Without love? Without family?

    Without human connection?

    It often seems like folks like Bob would be happiest if gay people simply pretended to be straight, living decietful lives, without regard to how that deceit harms others.

    Why does that make sense to Bob' s sort?

    June 18, 2012 at 1:30 pm |
    • Bob

      Nope wouldn't want deceitful lives but dont want to have gay marriage either, you dont know if change is possible till you try. There is already civil unions why not be happy. Gays have enjoyed more acceptance and non discrimination now more than any time in the History of the US and now you want to change the fabric of society for 3 percent of the population. Whos the one that isnt thinking right?

      June 18, 2012 at 1:45 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Bob's a "type". Can't you envision him in the days when heretics were burned at the stake, cheering? At the Salem witch trials? In Nazi Germany, hailing der Fuehrer as gays were rounded up and gassed?

      It's not much of a stretch at all.

      June 18, 2012 at 1:47 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Oh, there you are, Boob! Didn't see you lurking in the closet!

      How will gay marriage of 3% of the population 'change the social fabric' of the nation, Boob? Has it done anything of the kind in any country where it's already legal? Any state?

      As for civil unions, it's already been pointed out to you, even though you apparently can't read, that civil unions do NOT entail all the same rights as marriage does. When are you going to grow a conscience and actually give a single honest answer? Or do you think lying is okay with God?

      June 18, 2012 at 1:50 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      "Who is the one who isn't thinking right?"

      Umm, that would be you, Bob.

      June 18, 2012 at 1:54 pm |
    • JWT

      Civil rights Bob – not there yet so the good fight will continue until we are. Your religious predjudices do not trump cilvil rights.

      June 18, 2012 at 2:13 pm |
    • YeahRight

      "Nope wouldn't want deceitful lives but dont want to have gay marriage either, you dont know if change is possible till you try. There is already civil unions why not be happy."

      They tried that with African Americans separate but equal and it was finally ruled unconstitutional! Duh, it's about equal civil rights. The experts have said that it's too dangerous and detrimental to a gay person to try and change them. The American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Counseling Association, the American Psychiatric Association, the American Psychological Association, the American School Counselor Association, the National Association of School Psychologists, and the National Association of SocialWorkers, together representing more than 480,000 mental health professionals, have all taken the position that homosexuality is not a mental disorder and thus is not something that needs to or can be “cured."

      June 18, 2012 at 2:19 pm |
    • Bob

      Seems to me and quite a few others you are the ones that are now the persecutors here on this board and in life

      June 18, 2012 at 2:42 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      I'll bet that's what you believe.

      Now answer the questions, or be dismissed as a lying sack, Boob.

      June 18, 2012 at 2:46 pm |
    • YeahRight

      "Seems to me and quite a few others you are the ones that are now the persecutors here on this board and in life"

      It's called standing up for civil rights.

      June 18, 2012 at 3:06 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Bob says:
      Nope wouldn't want deceitful lives but dont want to have gay marriage either, you dont know if change is possible till you try.

      --------–

      You don't have to HAVE a gay marriage, Bob, and since you say you're not gay, it's all good.

      If you think changing orientation is possible, why not prove it? Change yours.

      June 18, 2012 at 3:09 pm |
    • Bob

      Why would I want to change mine sorry men are not my thing, hey have you guys heard anything about the Jerry Sandusky happenings haven't had the time to check since Ive been here.

      June 18, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
    • TC

      If "men are not your thing", how could you change that so that they were your only thing?

      You know it's not possible. But you believe gay people can magically change who they are attracted to.

      Sorry, we don't have that magical ability any more than you do.

      And, what's more, we have no need to. We are as God made us, and it's HIS hand in our lives that brings us the families we love and the spouses we marry, just as He does it for everyone else If you don't like that, complain to HIM about it.

      June 18, 2012 at 4:58 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      You know, Bob, you don't like it when you're called stupid, but when you post this kind of dreck, you deserve the epithet. Who asked if you'd "want to" change your orientation? I said that if it were possible to do so as you keep erroneously and ignorantly claiming, then you should be able to prove it. The fact that you idiotically mouth "Why would I want to? Men aren't my thing" is more evidence that you are wrong and you know it. You CAN'T change your orientation and neither can anyone else.

      June 18, 2012 at 5:50 pm |
    • Relish

      Sorry 'Tom tom – men clearly are your thing. Just be honest....none of us know you?? Why in this day and age do people like John Travolta hide this behavior and lie to everyone and end up abusing others...? Even on a blog people are lying....very sad and confusing. Everyone wants us to "understand" them....and yet this the most confused group of people on the planet. Some say born this way – a whole bunch of others say not born this way......ahhhhh!!!!!

      June 19, 2012 at 1:44 am |
  4. Janet

    "Thats because its not supposed to be and never was a normal act""

    The Biblical condemnation of homosexuality is based on human ignorance, suspicion of those who are different, and an overwhelming concern for ensuring the survival of the people. Since the Bible regards homosexuality as a capital crime, it clearly assumes that homosexuality is a matter of free choice, a deliberate rebellion against God. We have learned from modern science that people do not choose to be gay or straight; hence it is neither logical nor moral to condemn those whose nature it is to be gay or lesbian.

    June 18, 2012 at 12:33 pm |
  5. James

    "Thats because its not supposed to be and never was a normal act"

    The scriptures actually say nothing about homosexuality as a psychosexual orientation. Our understandings of sexual orientation are distinctly modern ones that were not present in the minds of Scripture writers. A few passages of Scripture (seven at the most) object to certain types of same-sex expressions or acts. The particular acts in question, however, are sexual expressions which are exploitative, oppressive, commercialized, or offensive to ancient purity rituals. There is no Scriptural guidance for same-sex relationships which are loving and mutually respecting. Guidelines for these relationships should come from the same general Scriptural norms that apply to heterosexual relationships.

    June 18, 2012 at 12:31 pm |
  6. YeahRight

    "Yup 25 percent of the 1 percent makes it .025 percent that actually may and that is may have had more male hormone. Suggesting a possible solution but in no way definite.So of 7 million gays in the US a total of 180 may have more male hormone in their system May is the operative word"

    Guess you missed the part where it is also genetic. LMAO! Thanks for proving you only cherry pick and make up lies to try and justify your unfounded prejudice and bigotry.

    June 18, 2012 at 12:28 pm |
    • Bob

      I must have missed that because what I saw was it was inconclusive and they admitted in the article that it wasn't proven to be genetic. the facts everyone can look at the article they dont have to rely on you or me but at least its nice to know that they really dont know yet. Hey if it is genetic which gene is it thats the gay gene ???? OOOOHHHHH thats right there is no such thing maybe thats why there Is NNNNNOOOOOO evidence. Its just a chosen trait.

      June 18, 2012 at 1:32 pm |
    • Erik

      "Hey if it is genetic which gene is it thats the gay gene "

      All major medical professional organizations concur that sexual orientation is not a choice and cannot be changed, from gay to straight or otherwise. The American, Canadian, Australian, New Zealand, and European Psychological, Psychiatric, and Medical Associations all agree with this, as does the World Health Organization and the medical organizations of Japan, China, and most recently, Thailand. Furthermore, attempts to change one's sexual orientation can be psychologically damaging, and cause great inner turmoil and depression, especially for Christian gays and lesbians.

      The scientific evidence of the innateness of homosexuality, bisexuality, and transgenderism is overwhelming, and more peer-reviewed studies which bolster this fact are being added all the time. Science has long regarded sexual orientation – and that's all sexual orientations, including heterosexuality – as a phenotype. Simply put, a phenotype is an observable set of properties that varies among individuals and is deeply rooted in biology. For the scientific community, the role of genetics in sexuality is about as "disputable" as the role of evolution in biology.

      On the second point, that there is no conclusion that there is a "gay gene," they are right. No so-called gay gene has been found, and it's highly unlikely that one ever will. This is where conservative Christians and Muslims quickly say "See, I told you so! There's no gay gene, so being gay is a choice!"

      The fact that a so-called "gay gene" has not been discovered does not mean that homosexuality is not genetic in its causation. This is understandably something that can seem a bit strange to those who have not been educated in fields of science and advanced biology, and it is also why people who are not scientists ought not try to explain the processes in simple black-and-white terms. There is no gay gene, but there is also no "height gene" or "skin tone gene" or "left-handed gene." These, like sexuality, have a heritable aspect, but no one dominant gene is responsible for them.

      Many genes, working in sync, contribute to the phenotype and therefore do have a role in sexual orientation. In many animal model systems, for example, the precise genes involved in sexual partner selection have been identified, and their neuro-biochemical pathways have been worked out in great detail. A great number of these mechanisms have been preserved evolutionarily in humans, just as they are for every other behavioral trait we know (including heterosexuality).

      There are many biologic traits which are not specifically genetic but are biologic nonetheless. These traits are rooted in hormonal influences, contributed especially during the early stages of fetal development. This too is indisputable and based on extensive peer-reviewed research the world over. Such prenatal hormonal influences are not genetic per se, but are inborn, natural, and biologic nevertheless.

      June 18, 2012 at 1:41 pm |
    • JWT

      Even if it were a chosen thing bob, that would make no difference whatsoever.

      June 18, 2012 at 2:14 pm |
    • Relish

      SORRY THERE IS NOT ONE SINGLE DROP OF PROOF THAT GAYS ARE BORN GAY.....ENOUGH IS ENOUGH YOU GUYS. JUST SAY YOU ARE GAY – STOP TRYING TO MAKE IT "SCIENTIFIC". DO YOU HAVE ANY IDEA HOW MANY PEOPLE ARE SITTING IN CHURCH....WHO USED TO BE GAY – BUT NOW HAVE NORMAL MARRIAGES AND CHILDREN???? LOTS! I KNOW MANY, ONES WHO HAVE EVEN GONE PUBLIC WITH THEIR STORY!! THERE HAVE BEEN SO MANY SPINS AND LIES ON THIS BLOG – IT IS SAD AND SICKENING. Come on!!! If there was solid proof – not one of us would be on this stupid blog and the world would be revolutionized by these astounding facts!!!!! Wake up

      June 19, 2012 at 1:37 am |
    • tallulah13

      Relish: You can deny the truth all you want, but anyone with access to google also has access to the proof you claim doesn't exist. You are either ignorant or a liar, and neither one of these things reflect well upon your character.

      June 19, 2012 at 1:50 am |
  7. YeahRight

    "and addicted to the most scandalous and unnatural lusts that can be thought of; and these they committed openly and publicly in the sight of God"

    Being gay isn't an addiction and it's not unnatural. LMAO! It's been documented in 1500 other species. The experts have stated that heterosexual behavior and homosexual behavior are normal aspects of human sexuality. Despite the persistence of stereotypes that portray lesbian, gay, and bisexual people as disturbed, several decades of research and clinical experience have led all mainstream medical and mental health organizations in this country to conclude that these orientations represent normal forms of human experience. The American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Counseling Association, the American Psychiatric Association, the American Psychological Association, the American School Counselor Association, the National Association of School Psychologists, and the National Association of SocialWorkers, together representing more than 480,000 mental health professionals, have all taken the position that homosexuality is not a mental disorder and thus is not something that needs to or can be “cured."

    Part of reading comprehension 101 is you put the scriptures into historical context to get the true meaning so what you are claiming about it being relevant today is UNTRUE since we now know being gay is totally NORMAL! DUUHHH!

    June 18, 2012 at 12:26 pm |
  8. Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

    Lots of words (and I use the term loosely, as Bob rarely writes anything that could be rightly called "words". The only "words" in his posts, outside of "the" and "a" are ones he's lifted from scripture via cut-and-paste), and still no cites. No sources. Nothing but opinion based on prejudice and hatred with the Bible as an excuse for depriving others of rights Boob enjoys.

    June 18, 2012 at 12:25 pm |
  9. YeahRight

    "Lisa Diamond and others demonstrates that women have greater " plasticity." Their orientation can be shaped by cultural influences, altered by positive or negative experiences and intensified by feelings of love or attachment. Women are far more likely than men to "report remarkably late and abrupt onset of gay, often after normal marriage," Diamond wrote in January in the Archives of Sal Behavior.'
    This is a GREAT example of Bob's cherry picking of the facts to try to justify their unfounded prejudice and bigotry. The studies also showed that a female's sexual orientation also appears to be partly influenced by her level of exposure to the male sex hormone androgen when she is in the womb. Greater hormone exposure correlates with more gender nonconformity early in her life (as a child, she may be called a "tomboy"), as well as a same-sex orientation later on. Lesbianism is indeed at least 25 percent genetic, as determined by a 2011 study of twins conducted in the United Kingdom.

    This just shows how much Bob is posting lie after lie.

    June 18, 2012 at 12:14 pm |
    • Bob

      Yup 25 percent of the 1 percent makes it .025 percent that actually may and that is may have had more male hormone. Suggesting a possible solution but in no way definite.So of 7 million gays in the US a total of 180 may have more male hormone in their system May is the operative word

      June 18, 2012 at 12:24 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      And? What of it? Suppose they do?

      How will their right too marry affect you in any way whatsoever? Where is your proof that gays are made, not born? You said you'd post them days ago, Boob. You've used every possible excuse to avoid doing so. When are you going to ante up?

      June 18, 2012 at 12:27 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      And? What of it? Suppose they do?

      How will their right to (not too)marry affect you in any way whatsoever? Where is your proof that gays are made, not born? You said you'd post them days ago, Boob. You've used every possible excuse to avoid doing so. When are you going to ante up?

      June 18, 2012 at 12:28 pm |
    • fred

      Tom Tom
      If we once again begin to applaud pederasty and hold the likes of Socrates high how does that hurt you?

      June 18, 2012 at 7:11 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      @fred

      Are you equating a relationship between an adult and an adolescent (unable to give consent) to same-se.x relationships between to consenting adults?

      June 18, 2012 at 7:13 pm |
    • fred

      Hawaii Guest
      I equate the removal of a Holy and Divine Standard to a loss of reference point for society on issues of what is good. Considering Tom Tom cannot comprehend that gay marriage is death blow to the Holy Word of God how can we expect a person of average intelligence to not lose perspective on what is good?
      Even you read the Bible and find God to be evil when the theme of the Bible is God giving everything to save a people. This is what happens when we lose an authority that the majority can look up to on issues of right and wrong, good and evil.

      June 18, 2012 at 7:25 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      @fred

      You constantly assert that the bible is all good, happy-go-lucky, rainbow puking awesomeness, and yet you are constantly having to use special pleading fallacies and spin to justify attrocities and immoral acts within the same book. There is no slippery slope from same-se.x couples to child molestation. You can demonstrate it, and you certainly can't insinuate it based on your complete lack of evidence showing any kind of correlation between the two.

      June 18, 2012 at 7:28 pm |
    • fred

      Hawaii Guest
      Pederasty was not child molestation for the Greeks it was held high and applauded by the parents that would lust after the approval from what we would today call molesters. I am equating gay marriage with the loss of common sense that follows when a society abandons a Divine eternal standard and replaces it with what feels good at the time.
      Gay marriage is not about two boys getting married before a Holy God in order to bring Glory to God. Gay marriage is about taking down the only resistance to a godless society. Gay marriage is about bringing the next generation of children up in a world where the Bible is not the Word of God but the lies of old sheepherders. That is world you never knew. That is a world where the powers like Assad, Stalin etc. control by dictatorial force and power. That is the pattern of great civilizations of the past and this go around it will be a world power.
      Open your ears to the drum beat of one world power, one financial system, etc. That system is secular on the outside but reeks of power lust within. You threw out your Bible too soon and missed the ending.

      June 18, 2012 at 7:43 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      @fred

      So you retract from talking about the bible in favor of speculation and unfounded assertions. How fun. Sorry fred but I'm not going to be playing that game anymore like I have in the past. I could really give less of a cra.p what your interpretation and justifications are for anything. I care about what is demonstrable and verifiable.
      Are you saying that only "godless" (even though the greeks had gods, just not the one you agree with) societies have dictatorships and control people that way? If so you really need to go back to history class, because you're ignoring at the least a thousand years of christian rule by theot and fear.

      June 18, 2012 at 8:00 pm |
    • fred

      Hawaii Guest
      “I care about what is demonstrable and verifiable.”
      =>which is lie. You have a delusion that life after death will be perfect peace for you (non existence) yet there is no evidence for that. You have a delusion that your death will result in the conclusion of your purpose just as the death of a whale yet you have no proof. You do not have a clue about the origin of life so ignore the fact evolution leaves you empty handed. You have read the Bible where it says for they exchanged the truth for a lie yet you hold onto the lie.

      “Are you saying that only "godless"………..”
      To what authority should the godless agree upon when deciding what is good? The godless have no authority outside of man and must agree upon a man as authority. Just like North Korea now clings to their god you pave the way for the next generation to cling to some manmade authority. Why would you pave this way for the next generation? It was a communist that said we will bury your grandchildren and in order to do that God must be removed from society. When God fearing men hide in their closets and hom-o$exusalty is applauded in the public square your ideal society as arrived.

      June 18, 2012 at 8:27 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      @fred

      First off, there is no evidence that anything of me will persist after death, and non-existence is the default position. All evidence supports that our counsciousness is a product of a functioning brain, and once that activity stops, so does consciousness.
      Origin of life (abiogenisis) and evolution are two seperate fields of study, so bringing evolution into the conversation is irrelevant at best, and dishonest argumentation at best.
      I've explained my stance on the immorality of the bible and will not get into that again, since it is useless to have a discussion like that with you.

      For the authority of which a godless society is accountable, it's other people you dolt. Real people who are affected by the decisions that we make. Real people who we need to make ammends to when we slight them instead of going to church and saying "god forgave me" and not caring about the people harmed. Depending on a "god" for judgement or forgiveness removes personal responsibility, and gives you a free moral charge card that can be wiped clean at any time. Sorry, but a god centered civilization has been tried, and has failed miserably.

      My ideal society has everything to do with equal rights and opportunity for all people, not just ones that agree with me. That's the biggest difference between you and me fred. I give a sh.it whether or not everyone has the same rights.

      June 18, 2012 at 8:37 pm |
    • fred

      Hawaii Guest
      “non-existence is the default position”
      =>no, rejection of God is your default position. Either way you reject one non proven default (paradise) and insert your own (non existence = peaceful slumber for eternity)

      “All evidence supports that our counsciousness is a product of a functioning brain, and once that activity stops, so does consciousness.”
      =>that is a default position based on a premise that our awareness of self is a physical reality based on chemical reactions. The alternative default position is that soul is eternal and is a composite of who we are not what we are physically.
      Unfortunately, your default position is aware that there is more than simply the physical reality and that is why it must embrace a default position to explain what your brain is instinctively aware of.

      “I've explained my stance on the immorality of the bible”
      =>history reports on the Civil War would be immoral? Would the accounting of Hitler’s treatment of Jews be immoral or would you say it was the behavior accounted for that was immoral?

      “Depending on a "god" for judgement or forgiveness removes personal responsibility, and gives you a free moral charge card that can be wiped clean at any time.”
      =>no, we are responsible for not only our actions but our intentions. We are to make amends and be a shining light for the world.

      “a god centered civilization has been tried, and has failed miserably.”
      =>no, we have never followed what God has commanded for any length of time. That is the part of the Bible you take issue with.

      “My ideal society has everything to do with equal rights and opportunity for all people,”
      =>I am not aware of that happening at any time in the history of man since Eve ate the Apple. How is that any different than “love your neighbor as yourself” “love your enemy” “serve others around you as if serving the Lord” etc.
      Christians did not take away your rights and opportunities. When man rejects God and falls into sin rights and opportunity are removed.

      “I give a sh.it whether or not everyone has the same rights.”
      =>no one has the same rights ! Congressmen and Senators gave themselves special rights to health care you will never see and that is just one example. What is more important letting people die and suffer or allowing two gays to get married? In case you have not notice you have been duped into taking your eye off the real problem and blaming a delusion.

      June 18, 2012 at 9:18 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      @fred

      A soul being something that lives on is not a default position. First you would need to define a soul, then you would need to prove that it exists. Stop being dishonest about what a default position is. You don't just automatically believe something when it is proposed. You have not ever approached anything resembling evidence of anything supernatural, so operating on the premise or "not only do supernatural things exist, but this specific supernatural thing exists" without anything to back it up is fallacious at best.

      I don't know what the civil war or hitler has to do with the immorality of the bible.

      What you really mean in terms of "god-centered" civilization, is that there hasn't been one for your specific interpretation of the bible. And you still have not provided any evidence that any god exists, let alone your god.

      June 18, 2012 at 9:29 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      fred, perhaps you should also try Aricept.

      Pederasty has nothing whatever to do with the issue of gay marriage, sh!twit.

      June 18, 2012 at 9:33 pm |
    • fred

      moT moT
      You got it backwards ! The point was that when Gods Divine Standards are removed and replaced by what feels good to man you end up with perversion the likes of which the Greeks thought was good. Even the parents thought it was great experience for their young sons and they themselves received public approval as parents. This is what the community allowed and approved in the absence of morality that is not of man.

      June 18, 2012 at 11:02 pm |
    • fred

      fallacious at best.
      Hawaii Guest
      “I don't know what the civil war or hitler has to do with the immorality of the bible.”
      =>one of the claims you make against God and the Bible relates to verses that give an account of typical warfare between nomadic tribes from over 3,000 years ago. You do not blame the author’s inspiration to write those history books and you do not call those history books immoral. You may view the event immoral but not the book, author or the author’s inspiration immoral. That simply reveals how desperate you are to give God a black eye that you cannot see how ridiculous your accusations are.

      “What you really mean in terms of "god-centered" civilization, is that there hasn't been one for your specific interpretation of the bible.”
      =>no, although I know God who is the creator a “God-centered” civilization can take on many forms as we discussed. The fact a civilization has accountability outside of this physical place or thinks that it does changes how they behave.

      June 18, 2012 at 11:19 pm |
    • fred

      Hawaii Guest
      “You have not ever approached anything resembling evidence of anything supernatural, so operating on the premise or "not only do supernatural things exist, but this specific supernatural thing exists"
      =>sorry, to give you the bad news but dark energy density level discovery broke the back of atheists that were convinced there is no supernatural evidence. You can read the paper yourself but the bottom line is that if the level was changed by as little as one part in 10 to the power of 120 the universe could not support life. Stephen Hawking and Leonard Mlodinow called it the most impressive fine-tuning evidence “Nowhere else in science do we see such a high level of measurable fine-tuning design.”
      I know that you will somehow convince yourself that those odds are meaningless but that is understandable. No amount of scientific evidence can bring someone to the saving grace of God. If you wish to read the study:
      “Disturbing Implications of a Cosmological Constant
      Lisa Dyson, Matthew Kleban and Leonard Susskind”

      June 18, 2012 at 11:59 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      @fred

      I don't really give a sh.it what the probability of it is, just because it is improbable does not automatically equal god. You're the one getting very desperate fred, constantly inserting goddidit wherever you think you can, when you haven't even established that any god exists. Sorry to tell you, but jumping from dark energy levels to god is a massively large leap with absolutely no reason attached to it.
      In regards to the bible, you're intentionally ignoring the fact that I have pointed out that in the bible, the method of warfare was supposedly given to moses from god. So yes I'm going to hold that character responsible, and you're twisting of "oh why not speak against the writer" is dishonest as well. You know damn well that your "holy book" asserts that it is the divinely inspired word of god, and that the method of warfare was supposedly handed down by that "god"

      June 19, 2012 at 3:56 am |
    • fred

      Hawaii Guest
      “I don't really give a sh.it what the probability of it is, just because it is improbable does not automatically equal god.”
      =>no, but atheists had to do some fast footwork when the research on Dark Matter came out. I assume you read the study (all 3 researchers are atheists so don’t pull the Christian bias card) and understand what 10 to the power of 120 means. Suddenly mathematics and probability is not important in physics? Good luck with that. I suggest you take the position the researchers did where they acknowledged supernatural event given the detail fine tuning of Dark Matter concluding a supernatural event does not equate to a God. My reply was simply to your statement we have no evidence of supernatural when in fact we do!

      “ you haven't even established that any god exists.”
      =>why bother when cannot even accept evidence of fine tuning? You can deny God but you cannot deny your own bible of materialism and fact only based reality. Your issue is much deeper because you go to such extremes to maintain even grasping against all odds in the hope there is no God. What exactly did you do that makes you so fearful of the possibility of a living God?
      =>why bother when you reject evidence that our universe had to be created for man based on core design? (carbon based)
      =>why bother when you reject evidence that primordial soup could not have happened in the time period required due to bombardment of the earth 3.7 billion years ago? When we bring back dust samples from the moon on our next trip we should find plenty of evidence that the soup was not on the stove yet. What will you do then.? You will do what you do now and say who cares about biopoiesis !

      “ jumping from dark energy levels to god is a massively large leap”
      =>tossing fine tuning evidence in the trash sounds like those who deny evolution. Only the Bible out of all the religions got it right with the creation which is one big reason to discount all the others. That is not the problem however as it is the intentional discarding of available evidence in order to prove an atheist belief that is based on nothing.

      “In regards to the bible, you're intentionally ignoring the fact that I have pointed out that in the bible, the method of warfare was supposedly given to moses from god.”
      =>oh my, given all the war time tyrants that claimed “god has said we must kill all Christians” “god has said that Jews must be exterminated” “Ala has commanded we kill all Jews and wipe them from the face of the earth” etc. etc. Given the serpent asked Eve “did God really say that” we are warned just how deceptive evil can be in our lives. Did Moses hear the voice of God or what Moses wanted to hear? What makes the Bible Divine is the truth that stands not an account from 3,500 years ago.

      =>truth is you can hold God accountable and responsible for everything that has happened simply because God created the plan for redemption of man. The fact that plan allows humans and natural events to be a source of pain and blessing can be viewed by some as putting a bear trap in a child’s play area. This is why the story must and does play out. That Bible we rely on to understand the game plan concludes with everyone who plays by the rules winning. Cheaters never prosper as do those who throw the game board up in the air because that is the way they decide to play this game. Perhaps you would do better to play the game the way it was intended. The end result is everyone who finished the game not only wins but every tear is wiped away. If you are going to take the Bible literally then why not the literal of God removing the pain as if it never happened or replaced completely by blessing.
      Call the Bible what you may but it is a story of redemption and being redeemed. The Bible shows it akin to delivering a baby where when the baby appears the pain is replaced with joy. Your focus on the after birth and process of life as it is written needs to move onto purpose which is the joy that will come.

      “ method of warfare was supposedly handed down by that "god"”
      =>you are the one who said God should never have created someone to burn in hell. Well your deep dark thoughts were answered long before you asked. God removed those pieces from the game board before they could mature and reject God as knowing willing adults with the full capacity to walk away from God and choose a hell of their own making. Let there be no doubt that God gives full opportunity for those that would repent to repent. That is the love of God which you reject not the warfare of Moses 3,400 years ago.

      June 19, 2012 at 2:55 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      @fred

      In physics? Math is important, but how is probability relevant to it? The perceived "fine tuning" of the level of dark energy density is irrelevant as to the claim of anything supernatural, and picking out a quote from hawking without giving the source of that quote doesn't even matter. Whoever said that I reject the notion of fine-tuning, within a certain context. I accept that life fine tunes itself to it's environment, but another word for that could be adaptation. In the context of fine tuning in what you're using it as, I do not accept it because you're usage of the word hinges on an unproven premise.

      " What exactly did you do that makes you so fearful of the possibility of a living God?"
      This statement is one of the reasons that I don't want to even bother talking to you sometimes fred. Someone doesn't agree with your premise and your "evidence", and it boils down to you making an assumption that is asinine, and condescending. How about you fu.cking shut your mouth about my personal life, of which you have no fu.cking idea.

      "why bother when you reject evidence that our universe had to be created for man based on core design?"
      This is probably one of your most arrogant assertions ever. An unfalsifiable inane assertion that something had to have been created just for us. Wow. I always find it amazing when a person is a part of a religion that devalues humanity so much can be so arrogant.
      All of your arguments for "fine-tuning" hinge on your unproven premise, and a specific context of the words.

      As for your last 3 paragraphs, you have engaged in your very well known bullsh.it of selective reading and selective responses. Should I repost the part that you so conveniently left out so that your 3 paragraphs might look like it makes a point?
      You know damn well that your "holy book" asserts that it is the divinely inspired word of god, and that the method of warfare was supposedly handed down by that "god".

      If you can't even respond honestly and to all points, then I don't know why you bother fred. You have become a true waste of space and time, and I'm losing my patience with your idiocy.

      June 19, 2012 at 3:41 pm |
    • fred

      Hawaii Guest
      “how is probability relevant to it?”
      =>10 to the power of 120 brings the odds to a point where only someone with an intentional bias or aversion could conclude it was by design.

      “picking out a quote from hawking without giving the source of that quote doesn't even matter.”
      => Stephen Hawking and Leonard Mlodinow, The Grand Design (New York: Bantam Books, 2010), 161–62.

      “ I accept that life fine tunes itself to it's environment”
      =>so, life requires an environment which the Bible and fine tuning conclude was created by supernatural means. Another way to look at it is that force which acted upon our known dimension of time and space must be supernatural by definition.
      “shut your mouth about my personal life,”
      =>point being that our personal lives and experience drives our bias in the area of supernatural. God is rejected for many reasons most of which are personal then science is brought in to support our personal position or in my case the Bible is brought in to support my position. The gay community is an example of a community that rejects the Bible because it is perceived as offensive and a personal attack on that lifestyle (which it is not).

      “All of your arguments for "fine-tuning" hinge on your unproven premise, and a specific context of the words.”
      =>no, there are many different examples of fine-tuning which cannot be explained. This is why the Dark Matter study in my prior post stated “We argue that these assumptions inevitably lead to very deep paradoxes, which seem to require major revisions of our usual assumptions.”

      June 19, 2012 at 6:44 pm |
    • YeahRight

      "The gay community is an example of a community that rejects the Bible because it is perceived as offensive and a personal attack on that lifestyle (which it is not). "

      That is a lie since there are thousands of gay churches, gay clergy so not all of the gay community rejects the bible. Wow the lies people tell themselves to justify their egos because they are being proven wrong. Hawaii – awesome job, keep it up.

      June 19, 2012 at 6:49 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      @fred

      Once again fred, you demnostrate your dishonesty by picking out only the points you want to respond to, and in some cases only a specific sentence, or that you think you have a "good" answer to, and continue to make your wild assertions. You misrepresent what I say when I said I accept that life fine-tuned itself to survive where it is. And quite honestly, I'm sick of your dishonest tactics and complete lack of any logical form. I'm sick of tryin to have a pick and choose conversation with you, and I'm sick of your complete lack of humanity, empathy, or really anything resembling morality. Bye fred, have fun with your delusions.

      June 19, 2012 at 7:05 pm |
    • fred

      Hawaii Guest
      Actually I previously addressed your other issues and assumed you agreed.
      “ you demnostrate your dishonesty by picking out only the points you want to respond to”
      =>honesty or dishonesty has nothing to do with my response to your posts. Simply because you cannot handle the truth does not make my response dishonest. When I respond based on what the Bible actually says it reflects the extent to which the Bible specifically addresses an issue. The Bible does not address all issues the way you would like which does not make the Bible any less true.

      “ in some cases only a specific sentence, or that you think you have a "good" answer to,”
      =>no, you toss out statements that have 8 arms like an octopus. I cannot address all 8 and still keep my day job. I break it down so we could address one at a time completely yet you jump of topic when you feel the truth is getting close to home.

      “You misrepresent what I say when I said I accept that life fine-tuned itself to survive where it is.”
      =>to the contrary I made it clear that your position was without merit. I did not misrepresent it. I made it clear that fine-tuning of Dark Matter required supernatural causation. I am not aware of any physicists or cosmologist that disagrees with the evidence of external causation in fine-tuning. I gave you the source where you can read Hawking himself agree that only an external force outside our dimension of space and time could explain fine-tuning. There is no argument that a supernatural force is required. Although Hawking rejects the notion of God he does not reject the fact supernatural forces are required.
      Now, if you want to bring in a bunch of scientists in the life sciences they may go down your path. We are talking about Dark Matter that affects the expansion of the universe from a singularity. We are talking about the surface of the universe and you are looking at the adaptation or specialization of the species on the surface of earth.

      June 20, 2012 at 1:13 am |
    • HawaiiGuest

      @fred

      Your quote mining is getting really really bad fred. Your characterization of Hawking as a proponent of supernatural cause is an insult to his work. He has never made any qualms about god never being needed in his equations, and to my knowledge has never even proposed anything like supernatural causes for the universe, since he has continually been a major proponent of multiverse theory.

      Go to
      online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704206804575467921609024244.html
      and educate yourself on the two authors actual positions instead of quote mining.

      June 20, 2012 at 2:53 pm |
    • fred

      Hawaii Guest
      Once again we end up with God being a matter of faith not evidence.
      Good article and summary of fine-tuning, thanks! Hawking I note put himself on the defensive as he is well aware that fine-tuning is a strong case for intentional design. Here is his statement “Our universe seems to be one of many, each with different laws. That multiverse idea is not a notion invented to account for the miracle of fine tuning.” Unfortunately for him it is just an idea that cannot be proven and hope remains that science may have answers some day. I assume you also noticed how his defense rests on a multiverse.
      Now, here is a good article that clears up Hawking reason for a multiverse notion. I cut and paste the following from that article where Bernard Carr, a cosmologist at Queen Mary University of London concluded:
      “I don’t think that the multiverse idea destroys the possibility of an intelligent, benevolent creator,” Weinberg says. “What it does is remove one of the arguments for it, just as Darwin’s theory of evolution made it unnecessary to appeal to a benevolent designer to understand how life developed with such remarkable abilities to survive and breed.”
      On the other hand, if there is no multiverse, where does that leave physicists? “If there is only one universe,” Carr says, “you might have to have a fine-tuner. If you don’t want God, you’d better have a multiverse.”

      http://discovermagazine.com/2008/dec/10-sciences-alternative-to-an-intelligent-creator/article_view?b_start:int=2&-C=

      June 20, 2012 at 4:52 pm |
    • just sayin

      fred

      Hawaii Guest
      Once again we end up with God being a matter of faith not evidence.
      >
      Any God or mythical being/creature requires faith to believe in it

      June 20, 2012 at 4:58 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      @fred

      And once again, faith is the most unreliable and stupid way of attempting to discern what is truth. Keep in mind that every religion claims that you need faith to discern the truth of their claims. You might also want to note that Carr, in the quote you gave, said that "you might have to have a fine-tuner." Note that the word might is the most important one here. He is not stating the universe, if it is the only one, must have a fine-tuner.

      June 20, 2012 at 7:21 pm |
    • fred

      Hawaii Guest
      Carr’s last statement is much stronger: “If you don’t want God, you’d better have a multiverse”
      Multiverse or not I suspect those who reject God will always find something to hang their belief on. Those who believe will even see Gods hand in multiverse.

      June 20, 2012 at 7:52 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      @fred

      So you'll even mine a quote that you use? How fu.cking dishonest can you really be?

      June 20, 2012 at 7:54 pm |
    • fred

      Hawaii Guest
      Nobel laureate Steven Weinberg maintains,
      If you discovered a really impressive fine-tuning…I think you’d really be left with only two explanations: a benevolent designer or a multiverse.
      Your attempt to hang onto the unsupported position that somehow God must fit your image of God continually points to only one thing. God is not bound by the dimensions we are bound by thus cannot be proven by that which binds us. To continue and demand evidence that is limited to our dimension yet grasp tightly onto the hope there is multiverse should set off some alarm bells in your head. You are attempting to prove that your faith in what you cannot see is somehow more valid than my faith you cannot see. You have made up a delusion to counter what you see as a delusion. That is really grasping.

      June 20, 2012 at 8:27 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      @fred

      I don't accept multiverse theory due to lack of conclusive evidence to support it. You are really a freaking moron aren't you fred. You make appeal after appeal to authority and expect to make some kind of point. I don't think your god is even possible due to logical contradictions in its proposed characteristics. I have never said that the supernatural is impossible, only that it has never been proven, and therefore there is no reason to think it exists. You can continue to make appeals and twist whatever the hell you want fred. I'm done, I'm gone, I really don't care what you have to say anymore, because all you can ever do is be completely selective, inconsistent and dishonest.

      June 20, 2012 at 8:35 pm |
    • fred

      Hawaii Guest
      That is the poorest excuse I have ever heard for breaking up. The recommended approach is to say it’s not you fred it’s me……I am just not good at relationships………….I need a really strong atheist that has faith our entire existence is nothing but coincidence that spontaneously came to life.
      Thanks for the quote however that our spontaneous universe without an observer outside our universe is in effect a dead universe. OMG didn’t the Bible say without God we are dead?

      June 20, 2012 at 8:52 pm |
  10. YeahRight

    "John also says that the sin of Sodom and Gomorrah was no hospitality this is totally bogus, in fact their sin was the very same thing we see today "

    Guess you were to stupid to read Ezekiel. LMAO "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." Sodom was about rape which is also considered BAD hospitality. Duh!

    June 18, 2012 at 12:11 pm |
    • Bob

      In fact their sin was the very same thing we see today that's why he cant see clearly that they were sinners before the Lord exceedingly, guilty of the most notorious crimes, and addicted to the most scandalous and unnatural lusts that can be thought of; and these they committed openly and publicly in the sight of God, in the most daring and impudent manner, and in defiance of him, without any fear or shame. The Targum of Jonathan reckons up many of their sins, as defrauding of one another in their substance, sinning in their bodies, unclean copulation, shedding of innocent blood, worshiping of idols, and rebelling against the name of the Lord. Isaiah 3 verse 9.

      June 18, 2012 at 12:14 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      How will gays marrying affect your life, Boob? Where are those studies you promised to cite?

      June 18, 2012 at 12:38 pm |
    • JWT

      Your, and I stress your, lords name should be taken in vain if he agrees with this witchhunt,.

      June 18, 2012 at 12:56 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Boob, how do you thing gays should be punished for their "crimes"? And can you cite any laws still on the books and enforced that characterize these acts as "crimes"? Aren't they "crimes" then, if straight couples engage in the same acts? Are you going to prosecute them, too?

      June 18, 2012 at 1:00 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      edit: think, not thing.

      June 18, 2012 at 1:00 pm |
  11. John

    ""THE TWO SHALL BECOME ONE FLESH." "

    Some argue that since homosexual behavior is "unnatural" it is contrary to the order of creation. Behind this pronouncement are stereotypical definitions of masculinity and femininity that reflect rigid gender categories of patriarchal society. There is nothing unnatural about any shared love, even between two of the same gender, if that experience calls both partners to a fuller state of being. Contemporary research is uncovering new facts that are producing a rising conviction that homosexuality, far from being a sickness, sin, perversion or unnatural act, is a healthy, natural and affirming form of human sexuality for some people. Findings indicate that homosexuality is a given fact in the nature of a significant portion of people, and that it is unchangeable.

    Our prejudice rejects people or things outside our understanding. But the God of creation speaks and declares, "I have looked out on everything I have made and `behold it (is) very good'." . The word (Genesis 1:31) of God in Christ says that we are loved, valued, redeemed, and counted as precious no matter how we might be valued by a prejudiced world.

    There are few biblical references to homosexuality. The first, the story of Sodom and Gomorrah, is often quoted to prove that the Bible condemns homosexuality. But the real sin of Sodom was the unwillingness of the city's men to observe the laws of hospitality. The intention was to insult the stranger by forcing him to take the female role in the sex act. The biblical narrative approves Lot's offer of his virgin daughters to satisfy the sexual demands of the mob. How many would say, "This is the word of the Lord"? When the Bible is quoted literally, it might be well for the one quoting to read the text in its entirety.

    Leviticus, in the Hebrew Scriptures, condemns homosexual behaviour, at least for males. Yet, "abomination", the word Leviticus uses to describe homosexuality, is the same word used to describe a menstruating woman. Paul is the most quoted source in the battle to condemn homosexuality ( 1 Corinthians 6: 9-11 and Romans 1: 26-27). But homosexual activity was regarded by Paul as a punishment visited upon idolaters by God because of their unfaithfulness. Homosexuality was not the sin but the punishment.

    1 Corinthians 6:9-11, Paul gave a list of those who would not inherit the Kingdom of God. That list included the immoral, idolaters, adulterers, sexual perverts, thieves, the greedy, drunkards, revilers, and robbers. Sexual perverts is a translation of two words; it is possible that the juxtaposition of malakos, the soft, effeminate word, with arsenokoitus, or male prostitute, was meant to refer to the passive and active males in a homosexual liaison.

    Thus, it appears that Paul would not approve of homosexual behavior. But was Paul's opinion about homosexuality accurate, or was it limited by the lack of scientific knowledge in his day and infected by prejudice born of ignorance? An examination of some of Paul's other assumptions and conclusions will help answer this question. Who today would share Paul's anti-Semitic attitude, his belief that the authority of the state was not to be challenged, or that all women ought to be veiled? In these attitudes Paul's thinking has been challenged and transcended even by the church! Is Paul's commentary on homosexuality more absolute than some of his other antiquated, culturally conditioned ideas?

    Three other references in the New Testament (in Timothy, Jude and 2 Peter) appear to be limited to condemnation of male sex slaves in the first instance, and to showing examples (Sodom and Gomorrah) of God's destruction of unbelievers and heretics (in Jude and 2 Peter respectively).

    That is all that Scripture has to say about homosexuality. Even if one is a biblical literalist, these references do not build an ironclad case for condemnation. If one is not a biblical literalist there is no case at all, nothing but prejudice born of ignorance, that attacks people whose only crime is to be born with an unchangeable sexual predisposition toward those of their own sex.

    June 18, 2012 at 12:08 pm |
  12. YeahRight

    "Ok parrot we have all heard that before did you see the latest studies in the news some good some bad for gays Adding to the confusion about what causes lesy is the slipperiness of female s itself."

    The hundred of thousands of experts disagree with you. Heterosexual behavior and homosexual behavior are normal aspects of human sexuality. Despite the persistence of stereotypes that portray lesbian, gay, and bisexual people as disturbed, several decades of research and clinical experience have led all mainstream medical and mental health organizations in this country to conclude that these orientations represent normal forms of human experience. The American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Counseling Association, the American Psychiatric Association, the American Psychological Association, the American School Counselor Association, the National Association of School Psychologists, and the National Association of SocialWorkers, together representing more than 480,000 mental health professionals, have all taken the position that homosexuality is not a mental disorder and thus is not something that needs to or can be “cured."

    June 18, 2012 at 12:07 pm |
  13. Bob

    Tom so I guess maybe its you taking peoples posts and reposting them enjoy your Internet anonymity while it lasts

    June 18, 2012 at 12:03 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      So now, because you're embarrassed at having lied, you are accusing me of cutting and pasting someone else's posts under my name?

      Stop attempting to side-track and answer the questions, you fraud.

      June 18, 2012 at 12:17 pm |
  14. Bob

    Ok parrot we have all heard that before did you see the latest studies in the news some good some bad for gays Adding to the confusion about what causes lesy is the slipperiness of female s itself. Unlike men, who are usually oriented solely toward men or women, and whose s is essentially fixed from puberty on, a decade of research by the University of Utah psychologist Lisa Diamond and others demonstrates that women have greater " plasticity." Their orientation can be shaped by cultural influences, altered by positive or negative experiences and intensified by feelings of love or attachment. Women are far more likely than men to "report remarkably late and abrupt onset of gay, often after normal marriage," Diamond wrote in January in the Archives of Sal Behavior.

    June 18, 2012 at 11:54 am |
  15. Bob

    John calls Paul prejudice and not scientific but lets look into this real man of God born in Tarsus, Paul was raised in Jerusalem at the feet of Gamaliel a leading authority in the Sanhedrin in the mid 1st century AD Gamaliel once gave some advice to the Sanhedrin in Acts to refrain from slaying the disciples of Jesus. Paul or Saul same person was a Roman citizen a Pharisee of pharisees and he prosecuted Christians until he had a encounter with Jesus. He was educated in the finest religious traditions and the Sanhedrin was the assembly of twenty-three judges appointed in every city in the Biblical Land of Israel. He also had a miraculous encounter with Jesus that changed his life. This is the man that John is calling prejudice and unscientific. Fourteen epistles in the New Testament are traditionally attributed to Paul. His authorship of seven of the fourteen is questioned by modern scholars. Augustine of Hippo developed Paul's idea that salvation is based on faith and not "works of the law".Martin Luther's interpretation of Paul's writings heavily influenced Luther's doctrine of sola fide.So John who is into credentials is not respecting the credentials of Saint John.With Paul's upbringing and teachings he would not even think it was ok to be gay and might be the one to kill you if you were. he did kill many Christians.Saying that paul would not approve of gay behavior is a drastic understatement. He also was spiritually apprised and had received the Baptism of the Holy Spirit and was anointed a Apostle by Jesus. Paul understood from God and Jesus the meaning of relations it went far beyond the physical side and when you have relations with someone you are joining yourself with that person. This scripture explains it.
    Do you not know that the one who joins himself to a woman for hire is one body with her? For He says, "THE TWO SHALL BECOME ONE FLESH." But the one who joins himself to the Lord is one spirit with Him.Flee immorality. Every other sin that a man commits is outside the body, but the immoral man sins against his own body. Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own? For you have been bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body. Do you remember that God said I made them man and woman this is the spiritual side of marriage God looks at us in marriage as one person. So if God condemned gays and He created man and woman to be fruitful and multiply and He considers us one person and we are made in His image how many tenants of God does gay marriage violate?

    June 18, 2012 at 11:49 am |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Ho hum. More of the same sh!t, piled higher and deeper, and still Boob can't produce an answer or the proof he said he had. Guess Boob is just another liar. Big surprise.

      June 18, 2012 at 11:53 am |
    • TC

      "So if God condemned gays and He created man and woman to be fruitful and multiply and He considers us one person and we are made in His image how many tenants of God does gay marriage violate?"

      Not a one, since no couple, gay or straight, is required to produce children in order to either marry, or to enter the Kingdom of Heaven.

      June 18, 2012 at 12:39 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      And who knew God had "tenants"? I didn't know he rented out property!

      Really, Bob, you are such a freakin' idiot. It's TENETS. Look it up. How can anyone take you seriously when you are so uneducated that you barely qualify as literate? You are no more capable of analyzing scripture objectively or reading peer-reviewed studies than a kid in junior high school, and probably less so.

      June 18, 2012 at 12:58 pm |
  16. Bob

    John also says that the sin of Sodom and Gomorrah was no hospitality this is totally bogus, in fact their sin was the very same thing we see today that's why he cant see clearly that they were sinners before the Lord exceedingly, guilty of the most notorious crimes, and addicted to the most scandalous and unnatural lusts that can be thought of; and these they committed openly and publicly in the sight of God, in the most daring and impudent manner, and in defiance of him, without any fear or shame. The Targum of Jonathan reckons up many of their sins, as defrauding of one another in their substance, sinning in their bodies, unclean copulation, shedding of innocent blood, worshiping of idols, and rebelling against the name of the Lord. Isaiah 3 verse 9. it will reveal the truth to you.

    June 18, 2012 at 11:46 am |
  17. Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

    Bob and his sock-puppets have been challenged repeatedly to produce the sources for the studies they claim show that hom0s3xuality is a choice, is an illness, and is abnormal. Not a single one of them has produced anything at all. So now they've had to back-pedal to the use of scripture for their argument. Funny how they can't admit they've failed to show proof of Boob's original claim: that he had studies that proved that being gay is a choice and is abnormal.

    If they only thing you bozos have is the Bible, which is open to many interpretations, your cause is lost.

    June 18, 2012 at 11:38 am |
  18. Erik

    "Parrrot so you found and posted the rest of the article good work but its far from the iron clad no change born that way idea that you want us all to accept."

    All major medical professional organizations concur that sexual orientation is not a choice and cannot be changed, from gay to straight or otherwise. The American, Canadian, Australian, New Zealand, and European Psychological, Psychiatric, and Medical Associations all agree with this, as does the World Health Organization and the medical organizations of Japan, China, and most recently, Thailand. Furthermore, attempts to change one's sexual orientation can be psychologically damaging, and cause great inner turmoil and depression, especially for Christian gays and lesbians.

    The scientific evidence of the innateness of homosexuality, bisexuality, and transgenderism is overwhelming, and more peer-reviewed studies which bolster this fact are being added all the time. Science has long regarded sexual orientation – and that's all sexual orientations, including heterosexuality – as a phenotype. Simply put, a phenotype is an observable set of properties that varies among individuals and is deeply rooted in biology. For the scientific community, the role of genetics in sexuality is about as "disputable" as the role of evolution in biology.

    On the second point, that there is no conclusion that there is a "gay gene," they are right. No so-called gay gene has been found, and it's highly unlikely that one ever will. This is where conservative Christians and Muslims quickly say "See, I told you so! There's no gay gene, so being gay is a choice!"

    The fact that a so-called "gay gene" has not been discovered does not mean that homosexuality is not genetic in its causation. This is understandably something that can seem a bit strange to those who have not been educated in fields of science and advanced biology, and it is also why people who are not scientists ought not try to explain the processes in simple black-and-white terms. There is no gay gene, but there is also no "height gene" or "skin tone gene" or "left-handed gene." These, like sexuality, have a heritable aspect, but no one dominant gene is responsible for them.

    Many genes, working in sync, contribute to the phenotype and therefore do have a role in sexual orientation. In many animal model systems, for example, the precise genes involved in sexual partner selection have been identified, and their neuro-biochemical pathways have been worked out in great detail. A great number of these mechanisms have been preserved evolutionarily in humans, just as they are for every other behavioral trait we know (including heterosexuality).

    There are many biologic traits which are not specifically genetic but are biologic nonetheless. These traits are rooted in hormonal influences, contributed especially during the early stages of fetal development. This too is indisputable and based on extensive peer-reviewed research the world over. Such prenatal hormonal influences are not genetic per se, but are inborn, natural, and biologic nevertheless.

    June 18, 2012 at 11:10 am |
  19. Matthew

    "It's Spiritual. The more and more you open the devils door, the greater the deceptions become. "

    Homosexuality is not a sin according to the Bible. Any educated Christian would know that. Scholars who have studied the Bible in context of the times and in relation to other passages have shown those passages (Leviticus, Corinthians, Romans, etc) have nothing to do with homosexuality. These passages often cherry-picked while ignoring the rest of the Bible. The sins theses passages are referring to are idolatry, prostitution, and rape, not homosexuality. That’s why Jesus never mentions it as well. There is nothing immoral, wrong, or sinful about being gay. Jesus, however, clearly states he HATES hypocrites. If you preach goodness, then promote hate and twist the words of the Bible, you are a hypocrite, and will be judged and sent to hell. Homosexuals will not go to hell, hypocrites will. This is very similar to the religious bigots of the past, where they took Bible passages to condone slavery, keep women down, and used Bible passages to claim blacks as curses who should be enslaved by the white man. People used God to claim that blacks marrying whites was unnatural, and not of God's will.

    June 18, 2012 at 10:58 am |
    • Bob

      Interesting in Johns post he makes mention of Leviticus that the word abomination and says its the same Greek word for menstruation. Abomination in Hebrew is actually three distinct words, and are rendered in the English Bible by "abomination," or "abominable thing. It would be good if these words could be distinguished in translation, as they denote different degrees of abhorrence or loathsomeness. Everything akin to magic or divination is likewise an abomination tō‛ēbhāh; as are relational transgressions , especially relations between family and other unnatural offenses. This is the most severe form of abhorrence and it is used to describe gay relations, the abomination of desolation and diviners and mediums. This is the meaning in the Bible where it talks about a man laying with a man. John does not mention this in his research and actually glosses over it. Neither shalt thou bring an abomination into thy house and thus become a thing set apart like unto it, thou shalt utterly detest it and utterly abhor it, for it is a thing set apart Tō‛ēbhāh is even used as synonymous with “idol” or heathen deity,

      June 18, 2012 at 12:01 pm |
    • YeahRight

      "This is the most severe form of abhorrence and it is used to describe gay relations, the abomination of desolation and diviners and mediums. "

      http://topicalbible.org/a/abomination.htm

      Actually in the article that you got your information from it says no such thing. You are adding it because you are nothing more than a prejudice bigot and real Christians shouldn't listen to any of the lies you are posting.

      Heterosexual behavior and homosexual behavior are normal aspects of human sexuality. Despite the persistence of stereotypes that portray lesbian, gay, and bisexual people as disturbed, several decades of research and clinical experience have led all mainstream medical and mental health organizations in this country to conclude that these orientations represent normal forms of human experience. The American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Counseling Association, the American Psychiatric Association, the American Psychological Association, the American School Counselor Association, the National Association of School Psychologists, and the National Association of SocialWorkers, together representing more than 480,000 mental health professionals, have all taken the position that homosexuality is not a mental disorder and thus is not something that needs to or can be “cured."

      June 18, 2012 at 12:06 pm |
  20. Melvin

    "As persons who seek out the Spirit of God and His will, one lives in the body but is also aware of the Spiritual."

    The Scriptures at no point deal with homosexuality as an authentic sexual orientation, a given condition of being. The remarkably few Scriptural references to "homosexuality" deal rather with homosexual acts, not with homosexual orientation. Those acts are labeled as wrong out of the context of the times in which the writers wrote and perceived those acts to be either nonmasculine, idolatrous, exploitative, or pagan. The kind of relationships between two consenting adults of the same sex demonstrably abounding among us - relationships that are responsible and mutual, affirming and fulfilling - are not dealt with in the Scriptures.

    June 18, 2012 at 10:55 am |
    • Bob

      Thats because its not supposed to be and never was a normal act.

      June 18, 2012 at 12:12 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Your uneducated opinion doesn't square with the opinions of actual doctors and scientists who actually possess some knowledge, Boob.

      June 18, 2012 at 12:18 pm |
    • YeahRight

      "Thats because its not supposed to be and never was a normal act."

      The experts have proven you WRONG. Heterosexual behavior and homosexual behavior are normal aspects of human sexuality. Despite the persistence of stereotypes that portray lesbian, gay, and bisexual people as disturbed, several decades of research and clinical experience have led all mainstream medical and mental health organizations in this country to conclude that these orientations represent normal forms of human experience. The American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Counseling Association, the American Psychiatric Association, the American Psychological Association, the American School Counselor Association, the National Association of School Psychologists, and the National Association of SocialWorkers, together representing more than 480,000 mental health professionals, have all taken the position that homosexuality is not a mental disorder and thus is not something that needs to or can be “cured."

      June 18, 2012 at 12:30 pm |
    • Primitivewhine

      Gays are sick. They are suffering from severe mental incapacity secondary to hormonal imbalance and anomalies.

      June 29, 2012 at 5:49 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      State your medical qualifications that would give your babbling any credibility whatsoever. Thanks in advance, troll.

      June 29, 2012 at 5:51 pm |
    • Phdbio

      How would you define x with y hormones and vice versa.

      June 30, 2012 at 3:00 am |
    • Phdbio

      *?

      June 30, 2012 at 3:02 am |
    • YO, Wrong!

      @Yeah Right

      "thus is not something that needs to or can be “cured."

      That is correct, it's not something to be cured because there's no substantial evidence that it caused harm to other people. And it's not something can be cured.....like aids and cancer.

      June 30, 2012 at 3:13 am |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.