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.
"Leviticus 20 vs. 13"
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.
"it reads in Leviticus 20 vs. 13, that this is an abomination, and forbidden by death, and this sounds pretty condemning to myself, and others who read this book, it is not accepted."
Christians don't follow Leviticus anymore, it's part of the Holiness Code, a ritual manual for Israel's priests.. So are you going to condemn all the others sins listed in that particular scriptures that aren't relevant today? Duh!
jwt, again you are in euphoria, and your own world, it does not include others obviously, nor consequences, and especially not equality, and peace of righteousness for all, just whatever one wants to do, causing mayhem, and perversion, as I said you stay proud of that pride of yours, oh, and denial.
Lorraine you are as clueless as it is possible to be. You know nothing about me except I refuse to believe in your drivel.
You're the one in denial all you are doing is spreading hatred and bigotry which is why our society can become screwed up with uneducated fools like 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."
Social science has shown that the concerns often raised about children of lesbian and gay parents—concerns that are generally grounded in prejudice against and stereotypes about gay people—are unfounded. Overall, the research indicates that the children of lesbian and gay parents do not differ from the children of heterosexual parents in their development, adjustment, or overall well-being.
I tried to answer, but they won't let it post folks, I guess drama is favored here, and not truth.
"HESE ARE THE TIMES FOLKS SO ACCEPT THE GAYS, JUST AS ALL THE REST OF WHAT IS GOING TO BE IN A WORLD OF CORRUPTION, AND IN DIFFERENCE, POVERTY, IMPOSED POVERTY, WARS, HATE, AND GREED"
Wow seriously you are trying to blame all that on gays? They makeup a very small percentage of the population moron. If you want to blame someone look in the mirror hypocrite, religion is the biggest culprit in killing people in history, it's corrupt, it shields pedophiles, it takes billions of dollars from their brainwashed followers. You have no idea what the true facts are hiding behind your religion to try and justify your hate is shameful!
Susan, no I did not blame the gays silly, I blamed sin, perversion, and wrong doing over the generations, and hate, and corruption of peace. For if you think that what we live in today is a civilization then you are shameful, or gravely in denial. And I have no religion, for they are all pagan, and idolatry, and are not of YHWH the Creator of life. His is the spirituality of all life, the connection of righteousness, and peace, of life, not for only some, but all people of the world, with no in difference. If His law of life had been taught properly, this world would know what a true civilization is, and the wicked, and selfish, would be no more.
Another person – my god – or whatever the heck it is – is the only way. How sad for you to be so blind. The vast majority of the world is composed of good people and no god was needed to make them that way/
JWT, what you are is selfish, pompous, and very puffed up with pride. This is not all about you, this is about people, all people, 'all nations' and the suffering of in difference, imposed poverty, and greed, and the misleading of idolatry of all religions, which are false in the sight of YHWH. Let your arrogance be your guide, you wear it well, as a great cover up, that is.
That log in your eye is huge what a hypocrite.
Why don't you answer the questions I posed, Lorraine?
Talk about arrogance! You're a prime example.
Of xourse I have pride I have pride in who I am. Everyone should. Your version of god is a flake – it's for damn sure not my god, never was and never will be, if fact the fewer people that believe in your god the better a place the world will be.
"WHAT ELSE DID YOU EXPECT TO HAPPEN FROM DOING WRONG, AND NOT THE LAW OF RIGHTEOUSNESS?"
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.
Matthew, excuse me, regardless of this so called proof, it reads in Leviticus 20 vs. 13, that this is an abomination, and forbidden by death, and this sounds pretty condemning to myself, and others who read this book, it is not accepted. But as I said, to no surprise, this being gay is now a reality, from over many generations of wrong doings of sins, and should be expected, it's all good' along with other pleasurable things as greed, selfishness, etc. that we do today, and calling it good, but it is wrong as said, or prophesied it would be in Malachi 3 vs. 14,,15. Doing whatever we please, and this the gays are the results of that, from vast perversion,and incest as are other things of sin,imposed poverty, and as in hate, and in difference, greed, etc. As also prophesied in Jeremiah 50 vs.37,38, the mingled people, will become as women, and are made about their idols of religion today. Handed down traits of iniquity is the 'sign of the times', for instance as an example: my son does not like condiments on his sandwiches, and neither does his dad, they, and his dad's other sons, and daughters by a previous marriage like their sandwiches plain.
Alright Lorraine...talk about cherry picking passages.
If you read all of liviticus, practically anyone who ever had se.x should be put to death.
I don't understand how anyone could live their life trying to live up to a set of rules created by a bunch of ignorant jewish power hungry herders.
Good luck with that.
Maybe you'll have the guts to join us in this century
CONTINUED...THESE ARE THE TIMES FOLKS SO ACCEPT THE GAYS, JUST AS ALL THE REST OF WHAT IS GOING TO BE IN A WORLD OF CORRUPTION, AND IN DIFFERENCE, POVERTY, IMPOSED POVERTY, WARS, HATE, AND GREED, INJUSTICE, ETC. WHAT ELSE DID YOU EXPECT TO HAPPEN FROM DOING WRONG, AND NOT THE LAW OF RIGHTEOUSNESS?
This is the time to accept Jesus balls deep in us and fill us with his salty love.
In other words life continues as it has for that few thousand years. Your version of righteousness is something I cannot fathom wanting to attain. Shiver.
Really, jwt. Lorraine's a friggin' twit who thinks posting in caps makes her seem more credible.
I was trying to be polite. I have a child with schizophrenia and sometimes have to be quite umm accepting of some strange things.
"is the truth that is to come"
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.
"This is a gift of faith that if you believe in Jesus and profess it with your mouth you will be saved. We by the blood of Jesus are cleansed from all sin so we are able to be forgiven."
Your Jesus can't change a person's sexual orientation that's the point because they deserve to have the same loving long-term committed relationships that straight people have including marriage. When a gay couple is married before their god, they do not sin. Duh! 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."
yeahright, where does it say that confessing in the name of jc is written by YHWH in the book of remembrance, given to us by YHWH in Malachi 3v16, the so called OT? There is nothing old about the OT, it is a juxtapose of what the future will hold. And I can see where YHWH states over, and over that He is alone, Isaiah 44 vs.24, and Isaiah 45 vs. 5-7, and there is none with Him, do not equal, or compare anyone to Him in Isaiah 40 vs. 18-26, YHWH magnifies Himself. Then in Isaiah 40 vs.10-14, He, YHWH tell us of the servant who will rule for YHWH, and how He taught Him. So therefore, all praise goes to YHWH. To confirm, YHWH tells us in Isaiah 43 who He is, He is the only redeemer, and savior, and no one can deliver us from out of His hands, none, vs. 13, and He states in Isaiah 49 vs. 26, and Isaiah 60 vs.16 of His being our only redeemer. In Isaiah 44 vs. 22 our sins are forgotten, we are asked only to retun to YHWH, and His law of life. So, what is this idol, image, that many keep putting over YHWH? The servant from the seed of David will be multiplied greatly in numbers upon the throne, as taught to us by YHWH through in Jeremiah 23vs. 1-8, and Jeremiah 33 vs. 14-21 many, not just one servant will rule for ever over the new kingdom, and they are the arm, and branch of YHWH. For it will all be called YHWH(The Lord) Our Righteousness is the truth that is to come. And as it says in Jeremiah 50 vs. 36-38, the mingled people will become as women, and will be mad upon their idols, as described in the days of Babylon, and now it is juxtaposed to this time of the United States, the world of today is how this book works, it tells the present, past, and future people, this is why much of it is 'prophesied' duh..for us to know what is to come, or what has come to pass. As is in Isaiah 13, and then compare it to Isaiah 47 about the 'daughter' of Babylon, which is definitely talking about the U.S. today. This is not about the old Babylon anymore people wake up, this is now prophesying for the latter days of today's generation as in Daniel chapters, 2-7-11 of these governments, and idol religions. Also prophesied by Moses that will come in Deut. 32 vs. 17, of the strange gods of the future generations, and the curses we have endure until this day from doing these idols in Deut 4 vs. 23-26, which were forbidden TO US ALL, ISAIAH 56, by YHWH.
Sorry Lorraine teh drivel of your personal view of your personal god puts me to sleep. Fortunately I am not cursed at all.
Lorraine seriously get some professional help for your delusional mind. If you actually thing what you wrote makes any sense than you are one seriously messed up person. Your cult has not place in our society.
This one goes out to all you fundamentalist Christians out there. Selah! I may be too narrow addressing this to just the fundamentalists. Many traditional Christians also fit the bill. Really, it’s anyone who believes that homosexuality is a sin, and that somehow God, infinite and eternal creator and sustainer of the very Universe, is ‘against’ a tiny human behavior that harms no one. In other words, uneducated and ridiculous people everywhere.
Officially, the majority of Christian churches say that homosexual behavior is a sin, thus proving that the theologians behind those churches don’t understand their own Bible. There are a whole bunch of goofball laws written down in the Old Testament that everyone ignores. Why is being bigoted toward homosexuals the one people latch onto?
The various Christian brands go through the Old Testament, picking and choosing the parts they consider cool. No one accepts the whole thing. No one. I mean, when was the last time a cheating spouse was actually put to death in keeping with the commandments of the Bible?
Using the Old Testament to determine if something is a sin is simply a matter of human and not godly opinion. It’s meaningless and certainly not ‘the word of God’. His teachings aren’t some basket of fruit for you to pick over. You either have to accept the old law in its entirety and start killing lots and lots of people or reject it in its entirety. Hand-picking the stuff you like is bogus, especially when you only pick the stuff that seems to legitimize your meanness to other people.
So the Old Testament is out.
Before we all start playing REM’s “Losing My Religion,” consider this denying someone the right to marry is not Christian, and certainly not American.
The people who are opposed to gay marriage, and by extension, gayness itself have no excuse. They are bigots and bigots alone. They can’t use their special book to justify their hate, even according to the special book itself. They have no one to thank but themselves. They take the Lord’s name in vain and feel righteous about it
Yes, they take the Lord’s name in vain. Most people believe incorrectly that this commandment is about cussing, but it’s not. It’s about using God for yourself, for your own vain (personal) ends. They hold the Bible in the air and use it like a bitch to bolster their own prejudices and bigotry and hate and that is vanity, all is vanity.
The teachings of Christ are plain enough: love and forgiveness, tolerance and healing, acceptance and rebellion. Nothing more, nothing less. Nothing more needed. Add what you will to it, it still won’t be from the Christ. It will come from your own (black?) heart.
Jesus Christ is the origin of the word ‘Christian’. Perhaps we should pray about that a bit more.
Today’s Christians tend to be followers, accepting of the notion that religion is just a box built by someone else into which they must stuff their spirit. They are naive and willingly line up like lemmings wherever told. They have a casual ignorance that tells them the Beast will come in the obvious guise of science or secularism or liberality. They cannot conceive of the Father of Lies actually lying to them.
Sinclair Lewis said that when fascism comes to America it will be wrapped in a flag and carrying the cross. When the Beast comes to the world, you can bet your sweet ass he will be thumping the Bible and preaching a hate disguised as love.
Micheal you are an idiot – sorry there is just no other word. You are not a christian nor do you know anything about Chriistianity or the bible. It would be more credible for those in the gay camp to just say – hey we don't believe in the bible....but no – you want to take a faith that totally and completely disagrees with your lifestyle and mush them together and anyone who disagrees – which is most Christians are bigots???!! Grow up!!
"but no – you want to take a faith that totally and completely disagrees with your lifestyle and mush them together and anyone who disagrees –"
This is a great example of this person's poor reading comprehension skills. You are assuming that everyone that supports the gay community is in fact gay. So, you're the idiot.
The only idiots here are trolls like you, relic. You aren't the authority on the meaning of what's written in the Bible. You're simply a hateful person who interprets the Bible to say what YOU want it to say in order to excuse your prejudice and feelings of superiority.
There are many Christians who know far more about theology than you ever will who don't agree with your interpretation, and based on the asinine posts you place here, I'd pay more heed to them than to you any day. You're just some nobody who goes to some fundy church and believes whatever your idiot pastor tells you.
Grow up, yourself. Get an education and add a few working brain cells to your cranium. You're nothing but another windbag just like Bob.
As Christian clergy we proclaim the Good News concerning Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) persons and publicly apologize where we have been silent. As disciples of Jesus, who assures us that the truth sets us free, we recognize that the debate is over. The verdict is in. Homosexuality is not a sickness, not a choice, and not a sin. We find no rational biblical or theological basis to condemn or deny the rights of any person based on sexual orientation. Silence by many has allowed political and religious rhetoric to monopolize public perception, creating the impression that there is only one Christian perspective on this issue. Yet we recognize and celebrate that we are far from alone, as Christians, in affirming that LGBT persons are distinctive, holy, and precious gifts to all who struggle to become the family of God.
In repentance and obedience to the Holy Spirit, we stand in solidarity as those who are committed to work and pray for full acceptance and inclusion of LGBT persons in our churches and in our world. We lament that LGBT persons are condemned and excluded by individuals and institutions, political and religious, who claim to be speaking the truth of Christian teaching. This leads directly and indirectly to intolerance, discrimination, suffering, and even death. The Holy Spirit compels us;
-to affirm that the essence of Christian life is not focused on sexual orientation, but how one lives by grace in relationship with God, with compassion toward humanity;
–to embrace the full inclusion of our LGBT brothers and sisters in all areas of church life, including leadership;
–to declare that the violence must stop. Christ’s love moves us to work for the healing of wounded souls who are victims of abuse often propagated in the name of Christ;
–to celebrate the prophetic witness of all people who have refused to let the voice of intolerance and violence speak for Christianity, especially LGBT persons, who have met hatred with love;
Therefore we call for an end to all religious and civil discrimination against any person based on sexual orientation and gender identity and expression. All laws must include and protect the freedoms, rights, and equal legal standing of all persons, in and outside the church.
"No one gets to pick and choose what to take from Gods word."
Let me start this off with a quote from a famous lesbian, Lynn Lavner:
"There are 6 admonishments in the Bible concerning homosexual activity, and our enemies are always throwing them up to us – usually in a vicious way and very much out of context.
What they don't want us to remember is that there are 362 admonishments in the Bible concerning heterosexual activity. I don't mean to imply by this that God doesn't love straight people, only that they seem to require a great deal more supervision."
I am going to attempt to keep this short and simple, so here we go.
Some claim that Leviticus 18:22 and 20:13 clearly say that homosexual sex is an abomination. In fact, it merits death. Isn't it obvious that God hates homosexuality?
Yes, depending on which translation you are using, Leviticus does say, "You shall not lie with a male as one lies with a female, it's an abomination." However, a few points must be made about this statement:
a) It appears in Leviticus, which was given to preserve the distinctive characteristics of the religion and culture of Israel. However, as stated in Galatians 3:22-55, Christians are no longer bound by these Jewish laws. Even if you, for some reason, argue that these "laws" are still important, then you surely follow all of them, right?
It is interesting that people who use Leviticus against the gay community forget the part that talks about religious sacrifices, making women sleep in tents outside during their period, the dietary restrictions placed on them and how to cleanse a leper, all of which appear in Leviticus.
The laws of Leviticus are completely obsolete for today's Christian; however, even if you do claim to live by the laws of Leviticus, it is not fair to pick and choose which laws you are going to live by, or condemn a people by, if you are not going to follow the others. You should not need any more convincing evidence than this; but if you do, be my guest.
b) The word that was in the original work, "to'ebah," which was translated into Greek as "bdglygma" actually means "ritual impurity" rather than abomination (or enormous sin). These passages in Leviticus can be translated to not mean homosexual sex generally, but only limiting homosexual sex in Pagan temples.
c) This passage does not denounce homosexual behavior as a whole, but just the specific act of anal sex. This was meant for the prevention of disease. It was ruled unclean because it was physically unclean; however, hygiene has made wonderful advances since that time.
d) These passages in Leviticus can be interpreted in many ways. I have seen it interpreted by scholars and priests to mean: "don't have sex with another man in your wife's bed;" "don't have sex with another man in the temple;" and "don't have sex with another man and pretend he is a woman," just to name a few.
I have never seen an interpretation in any Bible, or from any scholar, that specifically says to never have sex with a man.
Some claim the Bible simply does not support gay marriage. Chapter two of Genesis defines marriage as a holy union between a man and a woman. And later, in Matthew 19:4-5, Jesus himself reiterates the traits of a traditional marriage. How can you argue that anything other than celibacy is honorable for gay and lesbian people?
Yes, marriage is a holy union. However, in these passages, while Jesus reiterates (but does not require) the traditional marriage, he also provides an exception for eunuchs (castrated men – or otherwise impotent men, in today's terms), and allowed them to be married, saying that this law is given to those to whom it applies.
Because these eunuchs were born sexless, God made an exception for them because it was natural. The same applies to the Gay community today. Science has proven homosexuality is completely natural, so it seems God would allow for homosexual marriages.
In Matthew 19: 4-5, Jesus encourages a traditional path, but does not discourage alternatives, except in the case of divorce.
Jesus did stress purity of marriage, but not in regard to the sexes of the people within it. It can be seen that the reason that churches are against homosexual marriage is not because it is explicitly said by God, but because of a lack of instruction to specifically allow it.
In the time that the Bible was written it would have been impossible to foresee the future to be able to specifically allow or forbid homosexual marriage.
Some claim, in Paul's letter to the Corinthians, he lists homosexuals amongst the many sinners who will not inherit the kingdom of God. Doesn't that make God's position on this vice very clear?
If we look at the other types of people listed in this passage, we can understand what it is actually talking about. Law breakers, thieves, adulterers and drunks are specifically mentioned. The word "homosexual" was not found until the 1890s, so it would have been impossible for it to be in the original version.
What actually appears in the original is Paul condemning those who are "effeminate" and "abusers of themselves with mankind." In this context, the original Greek word, "malakos," is translated into effeminate, or soft, which, more than likely, refers to someone who lacks discipline or moral control.
In this passage, when Paul condemns "abusers of themselves with mankind," he is speaking of male prostitutes.
Then there are the people who claim that, even though science has proven that people don't choose their sexual orientation, the fact remains that homosexuality is unnatural. Romans 1:26-27 tells us that humans have a sinful nature, and therefore commit sins against God. Certain people are predisposed to be alcoholics and pedophiles, but that doesn't make their actions any less immoral. God tells us to "tear out your eye" if it makes you stumble. Why can't you just accept homosexuality as the part of your nature you must deny?
Because the Bible has gone through so many translations, and through the hands of many people (some being non-believers), it is not surprising that the meaning has become a little fuzzy in parts.
Homosexuality is normal. The phrase "para physin" appears in the original text for this verse. This term is often translated to mean "unnatural;" however, more accurate translation would be unconventional.
Proof for this can be found in 1 Corinthians 11:14 where Paul uses this phrase to refer to men with long hair (unconventional, not unnatural) and in Romans 11:24 where Paul uses this phrase to refer to the positive action God made to bring together the Jews and Gentiles.
All in all, homosexuality is obviously not a sin, unless you take passages from the Bible and add your own words or you just try really hard to interpret it that way. Let's just remember Galatians 5:14, where Paul stated, "the whole Law is fulfilled in one Statement, 'You shall love your neighbor as yourself.'
So when God made man and pulled a rib out of him to make woman and said she is your mate and He gave them to be joined to make one flesh and to multiply and to occupy the land, I think I missed where God made another form of relationship. Also in when He says no man is to lie with a man like a woman I think I missed your explanation here too. Along with how God calls gay a abomination.
Why is nothing prohibiting h0m0s3xuality to be found in the Ten Commandments, Boob?
Mat 19:3 Some Pharisees came to Jesus, testing Him and asking, "Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for any reason at all?"
Mat 19:4 And He answered and said, "Have you not read that He who created them from the beginning MADE THEM MALE AND FEMALE,
Mat 19:5 and said, 'FOR THIS REASON A MAN SHALL LEAVE HIS FATHER AND MOTHER AND BE JOINED TO HIS WIFE, AND THE TWO SHALL BECOME ONE FLESH'?
Mat 19:6 "So they are no longer two, but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let no man separate."
It appears in Leviticus, which was given to preserve the distinctive characteristics of the religion and culture of Israel. However, as stated in Galatians 3:22-55, Christians are no longer bound by these Jewish laws. Even if you, for some reason, argue that these "laws" are still important, then you surely follow all of them, right?
This statement reflects the fact that you know nothing about the Bible and to that point I hope you receive the due penalty that you deserve. I will not go into further explanation because to try to convince a liar is a waste of time.
"Along with how God calls gay a abomination."
Your bible says no such thing. What it is condemning is male prostitution, idolatry, rape and worshiping a pagan god using sex. There are no scriptures that condemn the saved loving married partnership of a gay couple as we know and understand it today. 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."
So you agree it is not mentioned in the Ten Commandments? Good. I thought not.
I would think that if it were truly sin, it would be there.
Thanks for proving my point.
"Staying true to Biblical instruction without condemnation for fornication."
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.
Is homosexuality a sin?
Self-indulgence is a sin. But the relationship of two people of the same sex may or may not be self-indulgent.
Abusing the neighbor is a sin. But the exploration of relationships among homosexuals as they search for partners, evaluate their existing formative relationships, and relate to each other may or may not be abusive.
Disobeying what God commands in the Bible is a sin. But, we have biblically-derived criteria for assessing and applying specific commands by reading them against larger themes.
Turning your back on God is a sin. Homosexuals are often among those who have turned their back on the church, and may be sinning because they also rejected the God they found in church. The church needs to be in mission to homosexuals with the message of Jesus and who God really is.
Yielding to your passions, even celebrating them is a sin. Homosexuals do include those who have done this. But it is not an inherent aspect of being gay.
Since we see people who have dedicated themselves to God, and for whom their gay sexual life is integrated into that decision and we see that their sexuality does not draw them away from church we must conclude that being and living gay is not a behavior in and of itself that produces pain to the neighbor and leads one away from God.
By the criteria the scripture sets for us for what is godly life, and by the reasoning scripture asks us to employ, homosexuality cannot be described as against God’s law.
If this seems like a rather quiet sort of justification for homosexuality, then perhaps it is because the grand clichés of this debate have been shouted at us for too long. But look at the Bible: it's demands and vision cut across all categories, not staying on the surface but penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart, rejecting all forms of self-justification, all forms of attack on the "other" and all forms of escape from God's assessment of our behavior. How on earth could we have ever thought that a series of flat rules was all God wanted to tell us on morality?
The Scriptures were written approximately 2000 or more years ago when there was no knowledge of constitutional homosexuality. The Scripture writers believed that all people were naturally heterosexual so that they viewed homosexuality activity as unnatural. Women today are pointing out that the inferiority of women expressed in the scriptures was a product of culture and the times in which the Bible was written; it should not be followed today, now that we are beginning to appreciate the natural and God-given equality of men and women.
Similarly, as we know that homosexuality is just as natural and God-given as heterosexuality, we realize that the Biblical injunctions against homosexuality were conditioned by the attitudes and beliefs about this form of sexual expression which were held by people without benefit of centuries of scientific knowledge and understanding.
It is unfair of us to expect or impose a twentieth century mentality and understanding about equality of genders, races and sexual orientations on the Biblical writers. We must be able to distinguish the eternal truths the Bible is meant to convey from the cultural forms and attitudes expressed there.
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.
No one gets to pick and choose what to take from Gods word. If you want to take the Old Testament then you have to take the whole thing. If you want to follow the Torah then you have to follow the whole thing, If you want to follow the New Testament then you have to follow the whole thing. You can’t really separate these books but for the sake of argument if some want to ascribe to a particular point you can’t just take a few lines out of one or more chapters and say that's it. Just like you can’t take a few pieces and put them in a jigsaw puzzle and say it’s finished with 3/4 of the spaces empty. The Bible is a book that has continuity and flows once you really understand it. It really is quite beautiful and enjoyable and is the source for life. But Jesus said some important words about why He talked in parables.
Mat 13:11 Jesus answered them, "To you it has been granted to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been granted.
We don't alter the word of God to fit us, we alter our lives to conform to the word of God. He accepts all that come to Him and says come as you are, He doesn't say stay the way you were when you came but offers help and love in the change. Gods words are there as warning buoy to sound the alarm when something in us is not right. If you reject the change you will not go forward in your relationship with Hm. We may loose the best of what He offers us clinging to the thing we feel is so important.
I don;t have to accept any of it. I will take the pieces that make some sense – love thy neighbour and ignore the garbage and unhealthy stuff.
Exo 20:3 "You shall have no other gods before Me.
Exo 20:7 "You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain, for the LORD will not leave him unpunished who takes His name in vain.
Exo 20:14 "You shall not commit adultery.
Exo 20:13 "You shall not murder.
Your god is not my god or lord bob. Nothing you quote from some old book can change that simple yet perfect fact.
is there even one person who truly believes they are and have always been good, i mean good enough to get into heaven.....before the bs that people claim where they have forgiveness by jesus – f that bs... i'm talking old testament style – is there anyone left who still behaves like it says in the "good" book? with the stoning women and all that – is there anyone who TRULY follows the bible and all its "glory"?
i am discussing the actions of believers being in accordance to the book they claim to base their lives on....it has nothing to do with the sole followers one of sect of jehovah!
.....i am discussing the god you claim to worship...even if you believe jesus was god on earth it doesn't matter for if you take what he had to say as law then you should take with equal fervor words and commands given from god itself....it stands as logical to do this and i am confused since most only do what jesus said....the dude was only here for 30 years and god has been here for the whole time – he has added, taken away, and revised everything he has set previous to jesus and after his death....thru the prophets – i base my argument on the book itself.
jesus said according to the bible – forget everything the came before me, only worhship me...study every word i say and nothing else.....NOOOOO he didn't – at least according to the bible – no.. he said know your scripture and that says it all!
which is something you claim to do...when was the last time you stoned a woman?
why don't you tell me how many commandments there are?
can you name all the sins?
You can pick and choose anything you want but at the end it all doesn't disappear, you don't disappear what makes you is not flesh and blood you are s soul just like everyone else. That is eternal or lives forever and this is you the true you that God created it is the soul that gives life to the body. In this you like everyone else will face judgement each one on their own with their own words either convicting them or praising them. So no you don't have to believe and in that all you are doing is erasing the benefits of knowing God now. God is powerful enough to not have to chase people to have them believe because where you began you will end up, All life flows from Him and to Him. He gave each a will to decide what we are going to do with this thing called life. A allotment of time to do the things we want to do, to shape our world to what we want.
Those are your delusions bob. Your god is not my god and I would never attempt to be so poor a person as to live by your rules. I have higher standards.
" No one gets to pick and choose what to take..." And yet you do it here every time you post, Bob.
I thought you said you had at one time been Christian? These questions you propose are pretty basic to understanding who God is and what is expected of us and what He gives us. Jesus said I came to fulfill the law this was the announcement that God made a new agreement with man, fulfilling the old one and showing man a new way that there was forgiveness of sin that the old way didn't offer. The word is covenant. The Old Testament was the old law the New Testament is the New Law under Jesus. This New Covenant is by Grace meaning gift from God it cant be earned. This is a gift of faith that if you believe in Jesus and profess it with your mouth you will be saved. We by the blood of Jesus are cleansed from all sin so we are able to be forgiven. This was accomplished because Jesus is God and took all sin upon Himself. Once we believe and confess then He starts the walk with us to bring us to a place where we actually sin less and need forgiveness less often. We are never perfect but we have the assurance and gift of this grace in our lives to help us and stop the devil from condemning us. Jesus said there is no one good except for the Father even talking about Himself. There is more that we receive as gifts in this New Covenant that help us to know and walk with Him. It is not a condemning walk but a gentle guidance of our lives knowing who's we are. If you make a agreement with someone then you have to get something out of it to agree with, God never commands He doesn't have to He knows the way things are made and tells us things to avoid the pitfalls and bring us home safely. This agreement is really our acknowledgement of the way that God has made for us and the receiving of gifts to help us walk in it. It is our choice each on their own makes this choice and everyone has made this choice even in not making it.
The laws of physics binds all, to how they work, believe it or not . You cant make a plane fly unless you follow these laws so why would you think the laws of God are any different? Since He made the laws of Physics
Bob, all I said was that you pick and choose virtually every time you post. Shall I enumerate the false and hateful things you've posted ? The deliberately false comparisons you've made ? I get it, you don't like the idea of SSM, and that's fine. Citing biblical reasons to support your argument falls pretty flat though, when in the course of your posting you act decidedly UN-Christian.
Your version of god Bob is just one more in a long list. it claims to have dominion over me, according to you, as a tyrant, believe in me or else. Well your god is not mine no amount of of you or others claiming that it does can change that fact. What you are proposing is that there is no freedom of religion at all, that people MUST believe as you do. That is a fallacy Bob, an absolute untruth of a huge magnitude.
NOTHING but more, and more sophisticated ignorance, right is right, and wrong, is wrong people, do the law of life, as stated in Deut. 30, and 32 chapters, and preferably the scripture of Deut. 32 vs. 45-47, and live righteously.
Hey, Lorraine, if h0mos3xuality is such a terrible sin, then why isn't it mentioned in the Ten Commandments? If you're going to pull out the "adultery" card, don't bother; if gay marriage were legal everywhere, it would mean that gays would be able to avoid adultery if they chose, by marrying their partners.
right is right wrong is wrong with many shades of grey. And being gay is right for those that are.
I guess as we see more and more of the ones who don’t understand we have to be even more thankful to understand what our Salvation really means. The words that we couldn’t know Him unless He first knew us are all conformation of your calling of your Salvation. We are the ones that choose what to accept but it is God that causes us to see and offers us the choices. If you have read this and you were called and you rejected it then essentially you have rejected an invitation from the Master. The reasons are your own and we all make our own choices. I really wish that when we accept Him we could have a download of so many things like a computer when you buy a new program. But it doesn’t work that way like any relationship you build on it and like any relationship you learn more and more about the other person as you go along. Some you have a business relationship with some a casual acquaintance with and then there is that significant other the one who brings you joy to be around. The Lord is the significant other or should be in your life. His main goal is so be close to the ones He loves.
Mat 13:11 Jesus answered them, "To you it has been granted to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been granted.
So you can't answer? Thanks for playing, Boob.
Adultery as defined by man is not adultery defined by God so man can corrupt the definition or the meaning but that doesn't change The meaning or words in the Bible. Funny you should make yourself God and think that change mans laws would change Gods laws but I wouldn't expect anything else. I posted an answer above I don't think you will understand it and its only the Laws but most times we cannot only break one law in wrong doing.
The "laws" of your version of the bible nor your god apply to non-believers in the same. A fact since the dawn of time.
A fact since the dawn of time IS that His laws DO apply to all,,You can choose to accept His free gift of salvation but your choice to believe Him or not is irrelevant to the laws He has already set in place. This is for all believers and non believers alike
Bob – his "law", via your 1st commandment, is that everyone must worship only him – under penalty of death and eternal torture. Yet, my 1st ammendment (in this supposedly "christian nation") is that I can worship any god or gods I want, or no gods. My 1st trumps your 1st. Every day. Every time.
Also, his "gift" is not free. You must choose to worship only him, to the exclusion of all other gods, in order to win the cookie. And to make it worse, he knows if I will go to heaven or hell. He knew this before he created me. Hell, he knew it before he created the universe. If he knows my ticket is punched for hell, how can I surprize him and show up in heaven? I can't. Otherwise he isn't omniscient. And if he isn't omniscient, he isn't much of a god, is he. So, in essence, your god creates billions and billions of folks, just like me, for the sole purpose of torturing us for all eternity. This makes him one sick sadistic putz.
You are funny you do have free will but beyond that you aren't promised anything. I make the rules in my business I can choose to ask you to be a employee but it is your free will to accept or not. The rules I have already set up so you agree to abide by those rules as long as you are employed with me. The difference is the ultimate end that Jesus resurrection proves that God does ultimately have the power over death. Also are you a eternal being? So if He sets the rules and are eternal then yes you can do what you want here but what about the future
your version of god has never asked me to be his employee. Nor could i possibly agree to be employed by such a poor example of a god. I am not an eternal being and never asked to be such. Like I said bob your god is yours not mine. Your gods lawas , sad as they are, are not mine. There is no cause nor reason nor need to pay any attention to them.
Out, Proud and Celibate!
Taking charge of our health and our lives.
Staying true to Biblical instruction without condemnation for fornication.
Good for you! You honor God with your words and your life.
Douglas, this is the best advice posted, to live for YHWH (God), and do what is right, being righteous as in His righteousness, and peace, as is prophesied in Isaiah 51, and preferably vs. 5.
You said, "Out, Proud and Celibate!"
Get a life. You are denying yourself the benefits of full and healthy human companionship to please an imaginary friend.
Nicely said Lin. Those that are gay should marry if they find the right companion – it is the right thing to do.
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