Columns Martin Marty: Sightings Opinion

The necessity of LGBT bridge-building

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EDITOR’S NOTE: This article originally appeared in Sightings, a publication of the Martin Marty Center at the University of Chicago Divinity School. Subscribe here to receive Sightings in your inbox on Mondays and Thursdays.

David Levithan, author of Boy Meets Boy (2003) and Two Boys Kissing (2013), will be awarded with the 2017 Chicago Tribune Young Adult Literary Prize at next weekend’s Printer’s Row Lit Fest in Chicago. Many of the bestselling author’s books feature gay characters and plots. A few decades ago his books would have been burned and the author scorned in most American cities. Today, as the Lit Fest world celebrates such books and authors, some adults still express concern or disapproval, while many (most?) young adults, our spies on the YA literature scene, yawn. There are battles ahead, but the war over LGBT rights has already been won by advocates. “Get used to it!” critics of the genre and its subjects are told.

Sightings has rarely done justice to the LGBT revolution, though it would have been easy to locate and comment on kindred topics almost any Monday during the two decades of our “sighting” efforts. The observer and reporter in me observes and reports that changes in public opinion on these issues have been astonishingly sudden. Why? Certainly, activists from the Lit Fest, academic, and celebrity worlds have argued the case for acceptance, appreciation, and celebration of the LGBT community. However, a subtler but more effective impetus probably came from the fact that your “pastor’s kid,” “pious niece or nephew,” “fellow believer,” “once distressed and shamed friend,” came out and remain active in religious organizations and causes.

Of course, given the centuries of anti-LGBT stands taken by religious groups—whether citing the Hebrew Scriptures and New Testament, official Catholic teaching, or traditional Protestant and Orthodox doctrinal and ethical positions—these changes can be nonetheless jarring.

A major bridge-builder is Father James Martin, S.J., whose new book Building a Bridge: How the Catholic Church and the LGBT Community Can Enter into a Relationship of Respect, Compassion, and Sensitivity displays guarded hope for change, as did his October 30, 2016, article in the Jesuit biweekly America. Please read either, or both, if you want to catch up on the constructions of this able bridge-builder. He is aware of the fact that certain Catholic teachings and phrases make acceptance of such an invitation difficult. Officially, homosexual acts may be defined as “intrinsically disordered”—at least for now. But does that trump the need for bridge-building? Not to Father Martin.

Thus, discussing the practices of Catholic institutions that fire LGBT people, he asks: “Do we [in Catholic institutions] fire a straight man or woman who gets divorced and then remarries without an annulment?” Such acts are also “against church teaching. In fact, divorce is something Jesus himself forbade. Do we fire women who bear children out of wedlock? How about a person who is living with someone without being married? Those actions are against church teaching too.”

Father Martin doesn’t pretend that because many Catholics turn a blind eye to other, less stigmatizing transgressions, that settles everything. Instead, faithful Jesuit that he is, he frames these complex issues in larger contexts, stressing the values of RESPECT, COMPASSION, and SENSITIVITY. Catholics have to learn this: “the catechism says ‘every sign of unjust discrimination’ must be avoided. Helping someone, standing up for someone when they are being beaten, is part of compassion. It is part of being a disciple of Jesus Christ.” Father Martin wants people on both shores-to-be-connected-by-bridges to get to know the other as a first step. They don’t, very often or very well, as of now. Parades, banners, and protests are pictured along with Father Martin’s article, but he himself is interested in the people whom they represent (or misrepresent). Then, difficult as the task may be, bridge-building can prosper.

About the author

Martin E. Marty

"Marty" is one of the most prominent interpreters of religion and culture today. Author of more than 50 books, he is also a speaker, columnist, pastor, and teacher, having been a professor of religious history for 35 years at the University of Chicago.

224 Comments

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  • An important lesson is in this article: if we are to build bridges, we have to care about individuals, one by one, and the entire person, not just one characteristic that makes someone “acceptable” or “unacceptable.”

    I think Fr. Martin is helping the Catholic world take a new look at old pictures and to see them in a different way. Good to see this recognized as important and valuable in other faith traditions.

  • Umm, okay. You saw what I did. Got it.

    So let me ask (since I tend to do a lotta stuff and can’t always keep track), what did you see me do?

  • Sorry, but I was looking for a major scandal, on this particular inquiry.

    What you’re claiming, merely falls under “Business As Usual.”

  • Your specific claim was, “Act puerile.”

    If that’s all you’ve got, then your claim merely falls under the category of “Business As Usual” for me, and thus doesn’t really answer my question to Ben.

    But thanks for playing, of course!

  • Oh shoot. Here I am trying to do a straight discussion with NO clever puns or double-entendres involved, but as soon as I say “backdoor”, *your* mind goes straight to the gutter. Will you *please* elevate your mind on this one, so we can have a good normal nasty fight?

  • If you don’t like bridge building, why don’t you just go full wall building? “Build that wall (between Christianity and LGBT people), and make them (LGBT people) pay for it?”

  • This is a very good article by a United Methodist Pastor Chris Owens who purportedly believed in Biblical “authority” and who was against homosexuality came to see the light and saw that Romans 1 does not apply to persons in faithful and caring relationships. https://pastorchrisowens.wordpress.com/2017/06/07/why-i-stand-with-t-c-morrow/ He now supports the Ordination of T.C. Morrow in Maryland as a United Methodist Deacon. One thing he did that anti gay people don’t do is to try to understand gay people and listen and understand us. Often people against homosexuality will insist that all Gay people are just as Paul described in Romans 1. Perhaps this passage doesn’t apply to all gay people, and actually could apply to many straight people. Here is one quote from this,

    “Now before I go on to explain my claim, let me say that I have traditionally stood right of center on the issues surrounding gay and lesbian people. This is for no other reason than the fact that I take the Bible– the whole Bible– seriously. I do not dismiss scriptures that make me uneasy or challenge my assumptions. It’s all God’s inspired Word to be read, believed, and lived out. That said, the few times that the Bible does mention homosexuality, it’s always a condemnation. Meanwhile, the Bible consistently lifts up heterosexuality as the established norm.

    I have spent countless hours, reading and rereading the Bible to understand what it has to say about homosexuality. I have spent many hours in dialogue with others whose views are different from my own. I have spent time getting to know people like T. C. Morrow and others who are gay and lesbian Christians. The overwhelming conclusion I come to is that the kind of sexual deviancy the Bible describes and at times calls homosexuality does not reflect the character and life of people like T. C. Morrow and others who are gay and lesbian Christians.”

    So hopefully the United Methodists who are reading this will pay more attention to Pastor Chris Owens than they pay to you. Chris Owens shows empathy for other people.

  • What denomination are you Floyd? Anglican/Episcopalian? Baptist? Calvinist (Congregationalist, Presbyterian, Reformed)? Disciples of Christ? Friends/Quaker? Lutheran? Methodist? Metroplitan Community Church? United/Uniting Church? Unitarian Universalist?

    Also, Meyodists are having the debate, but several of the above denominations are more LGBT affirming than them. Basically all of them, minus Baptists and Disciples of Christ are more LGBT affirming than Methodists.

  • Ahh. Floyd, I wish I could take these discussions as lightheartedly and tough skinned as you apparently do. I do not discount your seriousness of purpose, but sensitive and conflict averse as I am, I always strive to build some of those bridges that Father Martin discusses, but in his Jesuitical way (I’ve heard the Jesuits described as the CIA of the RCC) he is some what opaque in his expressions, probably for purposes of plausible deniability, but I too think he has gone a bridge too far.

  • Cute!! I am always trying to combine my opposition to Trump and my advocacy for LBGT at the same time. Your statement does combine the causes.

  • Maybe not in His daily teaching, but as the Word is all His Word, including the Epistles penned by others, I don’t think He would have abrogated the moral precepts of the Old Testament, even as He downplayed the merely ritual aspects of it’s teachings. He did clearly teach that marriage was confined to the relations between men and women, and were the natural sum and substance of human sexual activity. He was not bound merely by the cultural conventions of the day, being the Son of God. What He articulated then remains true today.

  • What it says in Leviticus 20:13 IS a ritual command, just as Leviticus 20:18 is a ritual command (not approaching a woman during her menstrual cycle). Bodily emissions and fluids are considered to be ritually defiling. The penalty in 20:18 was a severe penalty- being cut off from their
    people. That was the same penalty as a Jewish man would face for not being circumcised. Moses faced death before he was circumcised. (Exodus 4:24)
    So it is a distortion to claim, as many religious conservatives do, that ritual purity infractions in the OT never carried a severe penalty.

  • Like Daniel Wagle suggested, that’s a cute politicized statement of yours.

    The only problem with that is, I didn’t repudiate the first item (bridge-building).
    I only repudiated the second item (backdoor-surrendering).

    And as I replied to GJ, there ARE some very real “bridges too far” on this topic. It’s simply time for Christians to say a flat-out, zero-marshmallow “We Ain’t Gonna Do It, Folks” on those specific bridges.

  • My denomination? Sure, it’s the Church of God in Christ. Tell me yours when you get a chance, yes?

    But it’s no longer an exclusive Methodist issue. That point was passed light-years ago. NOW, with constant media coverage, it’s an Entire-American-Christianity issue (actually even more than that, given the large African UMC component.)

    So silence is not an option, Stephen. I get it that they generally want inclusion, grace and mercy. But if they belong to Christ at all, then the gay-marriage gay-wedding mess, and the practicing unrepentant gay clergy, of ANY kind, have GOT to go. It’s killing them. And no, this cannot wait till the 2019 Bishops’ Commission plods along to a fatal, useless, pro-gay conclusion.

  • Sorry, I’m going to Heaven with as many homosexuals as I can help to get there.

  • You may not believe this, but I have real difficulty visualizing you as a Jesuit.

    A bridge-builder? Yes, that’s easy to visualize, you got it down pat.

    But I see you as a John Paul II type of guy. NOT as a Jesuit, because unfortunately, the word “Jesuit” now reminds me of Fr. Martin, Pope Francis, and all the “Let’s Build A Bridge Too Far But Don’t Tell The Parishioners” gang.

    I really liked John Paul II’s gig. A bridge-builder, a true disarmer and dial-it-downer, a guy who could say “be at peace” to anybody and make it work. But John Paul II could also be COUNTED ON, not to take things a bridge too far. The Catholic Bible and the Catholic Catechism didn’t get watered down (or worse yet, get battery acid poured on it), even though JPII reached out to all sides / folks.

    That last paragraph, is you, Edward.

  • Well Daniel, one thing I always do, is to read Methodist essays from both sides of this specific aisle. I constantly read the UMC News and the UMC Reporter precisely to see what all their sides are saying.

    So you can count on me to click on your Chris Owens link as soon as I’m done typing here, to see what he says. No problem.

    Upfront though, just from the quotation, I’m sorry that Owens has come to the wrong conclusion. He has apparently allowed his formerly solid view of Scriptural authority and accuracy to get all dissolved, and now he’s subordinating Scripture itself, God’s own Word, to the personal experiences of gays and lesbians.

  • I’m Unitarian Universalist. I was exploring the Universal Fellowship of Metropoitan Community Churches, Epsicopla Church, and United Church of Christ, before being Unitarian Universalist.

    Also, your premise that LGBTs and LGBT rights are an existential threat to America Christianity is absurd.

  • Sorry, I have to chuckle at the gay protest slogan there. How old is that thing? At least three decades, wouldn’t you agree? Mmph.

    But I can’t chuckle too much. If Hillary had chosen to spend her final two weeks with Wisconsin’s whites and Florida’s blacks, she would be President now. And your entire post would already be coming true, on steroids, to the chagrin of Bible-believing Christians across the nation.

    For you, Hillary lost, and that was disappointing. For us — we dodged a big bullet, and gave a sigh of relief. (But only for a little while.)

  • So, would you then say that Romans 1 accurately describes and applies to every Gay person? If so, would then, killer of Christ describe every Jewish person? There certainly are New Testament texts that state the Jews killed Jesus. Wouldn’t the denial of the Universal guilt of all Jews be a denial of the authority of God’s Word?

  • No he didn’t. He taught two commandments. Love God and Love your neighbor as you love yourself. Now Paul on the other hand, is a discussion worth having.

  • I don’t recall him laying down the rules of marriage. He did say marriage was only valid here on earth and not in the afterlife.

  • Paul also taught the supremacy of Love as the norm for Christian behavior. Heterosexual marriage was not the most important value for Paul as it was not for Jesus.

  • So voting for Trump shows fidelity to scripture? Doesn’t the Bible teach us to welcome the Stranger? Doesn’t it teach the rich have an obligation to help the poor?

  • Yet in some of Paul’s letters he vehemently spoke out against homosexuality as one of those sins he filed under “let it not be mentioned amongst you”. The question is how much of an authority on these matters do we defer to Paul when the same Paul advocated certain practices that may be considered misogynistic.

  • I don’t recall him saying that about homosexuality. Perhaps incest. The fact is that the context of Romans 1 is idolatry. Even heterosexual marriages are equally condemned if they are combined with idol worship. Ahab’s marriage to Jezebel in 1 Kings 16:31 was vehemently condemned because it led him to worship Baal. In Numbers 25:1-5, there is fierce condemnation of heterosexual behavior when it led the Israelites into idol worship. It wasn’t an issue for Solomon to have many wives until some of them led him into idol worship (1 Kings 11). So I really don’t think Paul condemned homosexuality in and of itself like he does incest in 1 Corinthians 5:1.

  • The context there is idol worship. Heterosexual marriages are equally condemned if they are combined with idol worship.

  • Interesting. It certainly complicates the issue because a lot of people have interpreted that passage including me as the case for homosexuality. I can’t even imagine where you begin to resolve this. Christians need to have an actual conversation about this because there’s a lot of confusion and misinformation on the subject.

  • Honestly, those Christians who voted for Trump instead of Hillary (or who at least stayed home on Election Day), very plausibly “showed fidelity” to at least one scripture, Prov. 22:3.

    “A prudent person foresees danger and takes precautions.
    The simpleton goes blindly on and suffers the consequences.”

    Trump has his problems, we agree, but there was and is no way period, that Hillary 2016 was the correct choice for Christians. No, Daniel. She would have been a living radioactive Chernobyl Disaster for all American Christians — and a Hillary Supreme Court would extend that disaster — for the next 20-30 years. No joke, Prov. 22:3 definitely kicked in this time. We dodged a bullet.

  • Any person who knew what they were doing when they voted for Trump are simply not Christians in any sense of the word. There are SO many Biblical texts which condemn rich people exploiting the poor and that is exactly what Trump does. Trump wants more climate change but doesn’t want to help poorer countries which would bear the brunt of this problem.

  • That’s pure self-delusion. Your efforts to get to heaven via homophobia won’t cut it. A better formula is the bedtime song we used to sing to our kids:
    Three in angels all dressed in white,
    Trying to get to heaven on the end of a kite.
    The kite broke and down they all fell
    Instead of going to heaven, they all went to…
    Two little angels all dressed in white,
    Trying to get to heaven on the end of a kite.
    The kite broke and down they all fell
    Instead of going to heaven, they all went to…
    One little angel all dressed in white,
    Trying to get to heaven on the end of a kite.
    The kite broke and down they all fell
    Instead of going to heaven, they all went to…
    Three little devils all dressed in red,
    Trying to get to heaven on the end of a thread.
    The thread broke and down they all fell,
    Instead of going to heaven, they went to…
    Two little devils all dressed in red,
    Trying to get to heaven on the end of a thread.
    The thread broke and down they all fell,
    Instead of going to heaven, they went to…
    One little devil devils all dressed in red,
    Trying to get to heaven on the end of a thread.
    The thread broke and down they all fell,
    Instead of going to heaven, they went to…
    Instead of going to heaven, they went to bed.

    Good night.

  • The number of bridges that can be built to connect both shores depends on our willingness to go past our fears. On the one hand, one side does not want to share society with others as equals and thus they do what they can to elevate the position of their own group and to put others down. On the other hand, some from the other side want to conflate all religious beliefs that oppose their sexuality with discrimination. They need to note that one can have these religious beliefs without discriminating against others. The end result of exercising this courage would result in a greater willingness to listen to each other and thus the bu8lding of more bridges.

  • Jesus certainly did speak against homosexuality in Matt 5:32 and 19:9 where He uses the word “unchastity” and “immorality” which includes adultery, incest, premarital infidelity, homosexuality, beastiality and any other sexual conduct condemned in the OT.

  • Jesus and the OT teaches that marriage is only between a man and a woman. Never between 2 people of the same sex. In fact, homosexual “marriages” are fakes because to have a marriage you must have a husband and wife. Only a man can be a husband and a woman a wife. 2 husbands cannot be a marriage nor can 2 wives.

  • Jesus was never asked explicitly about homosexuality and the OT never mentioned the subject explicitly too. We assume that to be the case because of the lack of homosexual relationships in the Bible. If it were mentioned in the 10 commandments, that would be a different case.

  • Sounds like your just filling in what you want it to mean. Married people, regardless of male or female aren’t sinning or being immoral when they have séx.

  • Which is talking about animal headed god worshippers being turned over by God to base desires. Its talking about the Mystery Religions so popular then and their perfunctory pansexual orgies they included.

    Gay people aren’t going against their natures when they have séx with a spouse.

  • Let’s just call it a Freudian slip. I have certainly heard antigay people use the double entendre.

  • When you read those two verses in context, it isn’t speaking about homosexuality at all. If you read Deuteronomy 22, a woman who was *betrothed* was expected not to have sex with any other man. However, if a woman was NOT betrothed, there was absolutely no penalty on her if she had sex with any man. Jesus is saying that if a betrothed woman had sex with another man, the man she was betrothed to could divorce her. You see this played out in Matthew
    1:18-19 where Mary was betrothed to Joseph and because she was pregnant, but not by him, Joseph thought she had had sex with another man. Joseph then contemplated divorce. But he was told that she did not have sex with another man, so he stayed with her. Nothing to do with homosexuality, since obviously a woman can’t impregnate another woman.

  • You could help people for the Lord also, Riding. I’m sorry that you have decided to be a hindrance rather than a help.

  • thank you for the blessing, progressive. I’m still going to help them to go to Heaven – whether you like it or not.

  • Christ taught from the Book of Genesis to the Book of Revelation, Robert….He taught that homosexuality is a sin.

  • Book of Revelation didn’t exist in his time. The Jewish scripture being used at the time was the Torah which I believe is still used today by Jews and homosexuality was never part of his message.

  • Sandi, I have opposed your delusional mockery of Christianity my whole life. From the first time I felt the sting of holy hypocrite hatred as a white Mormon kid on the playground in a mostly holy roller school, I knew I had to oppose it. My friends in at that school were the other kids judged “unworthy” by the majority: the one black kid, the one Latino kid, the one white Catholic kid, and the half a dozen unchurched white kids. From early childhood I learned to have total disrespect for your brand of religion due to the bigotry of mouthy, pushy “Christian” kids using bullying on the playground to “spread the word.” The same schoolyard bullies grow up to be social bullies in their adult life, like you.

  • You don’t know Who Jesus is?
    I suggest you do a search beginning with John 1:1-10.
    Your next step would be Isaiah 9:6
    Genesis 1:26

  • What about helping poorer Americans bear the financial brunt of short-sighted Global-Warmer attacks on the cheap fossil-fuels that poor people rely on for home, school, work, light, heat, bus fares, used cars, lower grocery prices, and doctor visits?

  • Well, for readers, here is Romans 1 (the chapter).
    https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Romans+1&version=NIV

    So now let’s look at the following:
    26 Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones.
    27 In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.

    Now the entire chapter applies to us all. It’s the flat-out truth about God and humanity. But one of the human situations Paul points out, is that one. He doesn’t mince words, and he doesn’t limit the scope of those two verses AT ALL. No joke, no jive.

  • City buses and used cars don’t run on solar and wind power. And when fossil-fuel prices rise, the food prices rise too.

  • Jesus is not making any references to Deuteronomy 22. He is condemning all forms of sexual practices that are condemned in the OT,

  • No. Marriage in the Scripture is to be only between a man and a woman. Gen 2:23-24 is the template for marriage.

  • Jesus didn’t have to be explicit about condemning homosexuality because the Jewish people knew it was condemned in the Law of Moses.

  • And for those in the body of Christ there is no male or female, marriage is an of this world only thing, apostles have the ability to bind and loosen particularly purely temporal things like marriage.

    You are free to disagree, I’m happy letting God decide.

  • One does not need the term “homosexual” when speaking about:

    Leviticus 18:22 – 22 You shall not lie with a male as with a woman. It is an abomination.

    Leviticus 20:13 – If a man lies with a male as he lies with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination. They shall surely be put to death. Their blood shall be upon them.

    It comes through quite clearly all on it’s own.

  • The problem with that assertion is that there were also certain Jewish customs Christ did not adhere strictly to. Like interacting with the unclean, adherence to sabbatical laws and the view that some animals were unclean and as such inedible. I’m not saying that Jesus supported homosexuality but that he never talked about it so we can’t quote him on the subject. If you bring up the Old Testament, there’s the annoying issue of David and Jonathan that on the surface seems like an innocent friendship but passages like 2 Samuel 1:26 where David says to Jonathan “….thy love to me was wonderful, passing the love of women” raises questions.

  • Trump advocates cutting energy assistance to poor people. Electric cars can be recharged from energy generated by the sun. Hillary had a plan to replace the lost coal jobs by other kinds of jobs in West Virginia. Trump lied to them when he said he was bringing their jobs back.

  • Oh, it is most definitely you that is completely delusional about all things religious.

  • Would that include sex during a woman’s menstrual cycle? (Leviticus 20:18) The penalty for this was severe- being cut off from their people.

  • For those in the body of Christ there is no male or female, couple’s marry regardless of séx just fine.

    You are free to disagree of course.

  • Ah the love!

    Matthew 5:10 ESV
    “Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

  • Nope. Just the opposite. Your efforts ensure that folks like you will never be rewarded in Heaven. Whether you intend to or not, your efforts serve the Devil, not Jesus.

  • I don’t do “scripture” with you due to the fact that all of your misreading of it is garbage.

  • Unclean foods are an abomination in Deuteronomy 14:3. It is the exact same Hebrew word used in Leviticus 20:13.

  • Jesus taught Genesis 2 that marriage was between a man and a woman. He also supported the law and the prophets. You don’t have to be a highly critical thinker to connect the dots that since Jesus supported the Law and the prophets He would naturally reject homosexuality based on the Law.

  • Meaning? Stranger or ξενος (xenos) according to Wikipedia means, “Xenos can be translated both to foreigner (in the sense of a person from another Greek state) and to a foreigner or traveler brought into a relationship of long distance friendship. Xenos can also be used simply to assert that someone is not a member of your community, that is simply foreigner and with no implication of reciprocity or relationship. Xenos generally refers to the variety of what a particular individual can be, specifically guest, host, stranger, friend, and, as previously mentioned, foreigner.”

  • The law excluded eunuchs from the assembly in Deuteronomy 23:1. However, Jesus accepted Eunuchs in Matthew 19:12. The Ethiopian Eunuch was also included in the Church in Acts 8:27-40. What about animal sacrifices? Did Jesus believe in this because it was in the Law? What about the command to completely annihilate the seven nations in Deuteronomy 7:2? In light of Jesus’ teaching that we should Love our Enemies, do you really think he would support doing this just because it was in the Law?

  • What was the context in which he taught? If you’re referencing Matthew 19:1-12, he was talking about divorce. He also stated his definition of marriage as a union of a man and woman. You could argue that this passage could be used as an argument against polygamous marriages and homosexual marriages but concerning the condition of being homosexual, he did not address it. He did however make reference to types of men who can’t have children. He said some are born that way, some are castrated and some choose not to for religious reasons. Once again no mention of the condition of being homosexual. Sex outside marriage is a sin but if one is born homosexual and a christian in every other part of his/her life but can’t marry in the church then what options do they have in the church?

  • You are the one who stated the Bible was a work of fiction after being given scripture…..well, refute.

  • I never stated that they did not carry a severe penalty, I merely posited based on the teachings of Paul, that the Old Testament Levitical Code was a tool used by God to show humanity that mere rule keeping was insufficient to transform the lives and souls of people, that required the coming of Christ and the power of the Holy Spirit in people’s daily lives. The moral precepts of the Law (The 10 Commandments, etc.) were not abrogated by the dispensation of Grace. Among those moral precepts was the clear and underlying theme from Genesis to Revelation that marriage was confined to members of the opposite sex.

  • Jesus supported the Law and prophets.
    The Law and prophets teach homosexual behavior is sinful.
    Therefore Jesus believed homosexual behavior is sinful.

  • The problem like I said is there are exceptions to that rule which hampers your logic. He didn’t agree on everything. If he did, the Jewish law makers of his time wouldn’t have pushed for his crucifixion.

  • Absolutely is:
    • those in the body of Christ are neither male nor female, (Galatians 3:28)
    • marriage is an of-this-world thing only as there is no marry or marriage in the next world, (Matthew 22:30)
    • and apostles can bind and loosen things of this world (Matthew 18:18)
    • Doesn’t interfere in the promises of the New Covenant to love God, others, ourselves – repent all our failures in love and ask God to forgive our own failures to love as much as we forgive others their failures towards us.

    Completely consistent with Scripture.

    But you are of course free to disagree.

  • You completely ignored the context of Pauls text. LOL! And your interpretation is inconsistent with Pauls Rom. 1 teaching on homosexual sexual perversion.

  • You read my first comment so you know where I stand on this issue and what my concerns are. If you wanna go for low hanging fruit then have at it.

  • He said it in the present tense and even if he hadn’t the ability to bind and loosen suffices.

    Romans one is about idolaters of animal headed gods punished by God with lusts against their natures. Séx between spouses isn’t lust and it isn’t against their nature to have séx with their spouse whatever their séx. A rant by Paul against the Mystery Religions and their ritualized orgies.

    Again you are free to disagree.

  • You dont know your biblical theology. Ot was types and shadows. Jesus was the fulfillment. All the law and prophets pointed to Jesus.

  • Passing false judgment and bearing false witness, as usual. At least you are consistent.

  • Ephesians 5:31-32 states, “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.” This is a profound mystery—but I am talking about into Christ and into the church.” So, Paul isn’t stating here that Genesis 2:23-24 means only between a man and a woman, but rather between all the members of the Body of Christ, with both genders. That the Body of Christ is more important than heterosexual marriage is one of the reasons Paul was so lukewarm about heterosexual marriage in 1 Corinthians 7. It wasn’t only that he thought the world would come to an end. The community of both genders together was more important. Also Ruth 1:14 states that Ruth “cleaved” or dabaq to Naomi. Dabaq is the Hebrew word used for a man to “cleave” to his wife in Genesis 2:24. It obviously was not understood that this was only acceptable to someone of the opposite sex.

  • You are changing the subject. You originally claimed that Jesus would have accepted any rule without question just because it was in the Law. I merely pointed to exceptions to your supposition. Jesus didn’t take a “God said it, I believe it, that settles it” approach to the Law, esp. not just taking isolated verses from it.

  • You are correct. One side does not want to share society equally with others.
    It’s not the Christians.

  • Paul certainly was thinking that a marriage is only between a man and a woman. Nowhere in the the Scriptures do we find even a hint of homosexual “marriages”.

  • Underfret,
    Who made laws that criminalized homosexuality? Who opposed same-sex marriage? Who opposes anti-discrimination laws that would protect the LGBT community from harassment and being fired from jobs for sexual orientation or identity?

    On the other hand, who is for businesses being able to discriminate against groups of people?

  • Paul certainly didn’t say in this Ephesians text that Genesis 2:24 only means a “one man, one woman” marriage, but most of all “into Christ and into the Church.” Ruth was only commended for Cleaving to Naomi. She was never told she could only cleave to the opposite sex.

  • Christ condemned homosexuality Curt. Christ taught that marriage is only a man and a woman, Curt. “Sexual orientation” now includes pedophiles…are you sure you want to go in that direction?

  • Christ differs with you.

    1 Corinthians 7: 2 But because of the temptation to sexual immorality, each man should have his own wife and each woman her own husband. 3 The husband should give to his wife her conjugal rights, and likewise the wife to her husband.

    He listed no exceptions.

  • Homosexuality is idolatry. They exchange an idol for Christ so their sin can be “acceptable”.

  • Still trying to start a Bible bash, so sweet in your own sick way. I’ll pass. I don’t feed the bears or the bigots.

  • No. Those are the teaching of Christ through Paul Oshtur. Read Galatians 1 and learn how Paul was taught by Christ for 3 years.

  • Hmmmm you just said Christ disagreed with me and quoted Paul but when I do the same you correct me that what you did is mistaken.

    Hmmmmm

    Either way Paul said there was no male or female for those in the body of Christ. People were martyred for marry ‘Master and servant’ against Roman edict, it does apply to marriages too.

    And again, apostles can bind and loosen the worldly things like marriage.

    Either way there is no violation of the New Covenant no matter the séx of your spouse.

    You are of course free to disagree but I consider it of the level of what days to celebrate and meats we may eat.

  • Not for you. I don’t give druggies handouts for their addiction. Bible-thumping is yours.

  • The male and female of Galatians is in reference to salvation.
    There is a violation of the New Covenant. Homosexuality is a sin. Christ taught several times that marriage is a man and a woman, one example I have already given you….
    Calling a sinful relationship “marriage” does not make it an un-sin, my friend.

  • If you cannot assert your points with scripture Riding, then you have no points – particularly on a Christian matter. Have a nice day.

  • No, it is about those in the body of Christ right now, the greek is in present tense. If it was sufficient reason for people to martyr themselves marrying those of different classes, it most certainly is relevant for those who marry couples regardless of ‘male nor female’.

    And Christ taught that there is no male nor female, that marriage is not part of the next life, and that the apostles can bind and loosen the dogma as needed here on earth, particularly if it changes nothing in heaven.

    Homosexuality is no more a sin than heterosexuality. And calling something just as blessed by God as ‘sinful’ tells me more about you than it does God.

    Again, you are free to disagree, you want to celebrate the Sabbath on Sunday rather than Saturday, fine, you want to eat meat that has been part of a pagan ritual, that’s ok too. It makes no substantive difference to Christians or God or me.

  • And it is in reference to salvation Oshtur. If Christ were teaching there are no male or female, he would not have discussed the sexes in his discourse on marriage and divorce. You are mistaken Oshtur.

  • I know you think I am but I am sure by the Spirit I am not. God really doesn’t care what the séx of your spouse is, for you will not have one in eternity at all.

    Christ has said it, I believe it and if you don’t – then don’t marry someone of the same séx for even being wrongly defiant is against God.

  • That is absurd that homosexuality IS idolatry. Paul said the idolatry was worshipping the creature rather than the Creator. He didn’t say that ONLY LGBT persons worship idols.

  • Yes but you make personal insults – not necessary with the truth. We attack ideas not people.

  • Of course Paul meant that. Marriage is ONLY between a man and a woman. 2 same sex people cannot cleave to each other nor be united as one.

  • Sandi,
    Yes, the whole Bible condemns homosexuality. But it also condemns idolatry and so why not eliminate freedom of religion then since other religions involve worshiping false gods?

    And no, protecting the jobs of from harassment and discrimination for sexual orientation does not include pedophilia just as it does not include statutory rape. Show me the laws that say otherwise.

  • I don’t agree that the whole Bible condemns homosexuality. However, the other points you make are fine.

  • Homosexuality is idolatry.
    We want to protect their jobs Curt. No one suggested otherwise
    They are now classifying pedophilia as a sexual orientation, Curt.

  • If you want to discuss Christ, the best means is by citing His word. Are you saying you don’t know the scriptures you are trying to assert?

  • Homosexuals worship idols Daniel. Christ taught that homosexuality is a sin. So, to try to justify that they are not sinning, homosexuals turn Christ into an idol that says, go ahead.

  • Actually He does Oshtur.
    1 Corinthians 7: 2 But because of the temptation to sexual immorality, each man should have his own wife and each woman her own husband. 3 The husband should give to his wife her conjugal rights, and likewise the wife to her husband.
    Christ will not contradict Himself.

  • Another nice try to control a conversation you invited yourself to have. Your efforts are still a big fail. The topic is “LGBT Bridge-building.” You use scripture as a wrecking ball.

  • They should be. If they want to eat, they need to work.
    Scientists in Canada have classified it as an orientation.

  • And the terms are without ‘male or female’ context.

    Again couples marry regardless of male or female just fine.

    You are free to disagree but nothing you’ve said has changed a thing from the beginning. Until Galatians and Matthew disappear you’re just spinning your wheels.

  • I would use the stories of Ruth and Naomi and Jonathan and David. But even if there are negative texts about homosexuality doesn’t mean these negative passages are all over the Bible. What IS all over the Bible is an emphasis that God is in the side of the oppressed and downtrodden. Can you find one Scripture that says it is ok to oppress the downtrodden?

  • Daniel,
    What in the biblical text confirms that homosexuality was involved in those stories?

    God is on the side of the oppressed. But sometimes Israel was oppressed because they were being judged by God.

    There is no justification in the NT for oppressing those from the LGBT community. But there is no justification in the NT for saying homosexuality is condoned by God’s Word.

    The passages on marriage and who marriage involves.

  • As are you, but that isn’t the issue. i have presented more than enough Scripture to back up my denomination’s view and you have presented nothing that wasn’t consider when that view was reached.

    Again, you have a right to your beliefs about this temporal issue. That doesn’t make either of us not followers of Christ.

    We are here but walk in the next world, I suggest we both focus our attention there.

  • Sandi,
    First, it hasn’t officially been classified as a sexual orientation. And there is a difference of opinion in the article as to what leads to pedophilia.

    Second, those seeking relief are those who have not committed any acts of pedophilia.

    Third, there is no scientist who is advancing any kind of acceptance of pedophilia based on the preliminary research.

  • I looked on Facebook and you say you are a Fundamentalist. You then don’t interpret the Bible in context. I would interpret it as saying IF homosexuality is compounded by other sins, such as idol worship or pedophilia or the rape of slaves, then it is condemned. Heterosexuality is also strongly condemned in these contexts as well- such as Numbers 25. By the way, Ruth “cleaved” to Naomi in Ruth 1:14. This is the same Hebrew word used for a man to “cleave” to his wife in Genesis 2:24. David’s love for Jonathan surpassed the love of women and Jonathan loved David as he loved his own soul. This certainly sounds like a marital type of love. Homosexuality is most importantly about who one “falls in love with,” it is only secondarily who one goes to bed with.

  • No one accused you of not being a follower of Christ. We each have agreed with the other’s comments at different times, but on this we differ. Homosexuality is a filthy sin that kills people. God bless

    Leviticus 18:22 – 22 You shall not lie with a male as with a woman. It is an abomination.

    Leviticus 20:13 – If a man lies with a male as he lies with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination. They shall surely be put to death. Their blood shall be upon them.

    1 Corinthians 6:9-11English Standard Version (ESV)
    9 Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, 10 nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. 11 And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.

    Romans 1:32Though they know God’s righteous decree that those who practice such things deserve to die, they not only do them but give approval to those who practice them.”
    Where does Christ condone the immorality?
    Be careful, my friend.

  • Sandi,
    But you are missing some key distinctions when you report that. Yes, some scientists are calling it an orientation and they do so for specific reasons. It hasn’t been officially classified as an orientation. And the reasons for classifying it that way are to help those with that kind of attraction to get help. That is a far different context than that of the sexual orientation of homosexuality and bisexuality.

  • They are scientists, and they are calling it a “sexual orientation”. So, I would stay away from the “orientation” mess.

  • Leviticus 18:22 – 22 You shall not lie with a male as with a woman. It is an abomination.

    Leviticus 20:13 – If a man lies with a male as he lies with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination. They shall surely be put to death. Their blood shall be upon them.
    Christ taught that homosexuality is a sin.

  • Daniel,
    Why are you making such assumptions about Fundamentalists? Do you know why I call myself a Fundamentalist? It is because I believe in the fundamentals of the faith as specified to distinguish what was essential Christianity from theological liberalism back in the early 20th century. Since then, fundamentalism’s definition has been alter to diver attention away from the essentials of the faith. I call myself a fundamentalist to draw attention to those essentials.

    Heterosexuality is not condemned in the Scriptures. Sexual immorality is and you see that in Numbers 25. Why would sexual immorality with Moabite women be condemned then? This passage tells use what the NT tells us, that sexual immorality is condemned.

    As for Ruth, why do you think that the passage implies a sexual relationship between Naomi and Ruth? The language certainly carries no such implication unless the passage where a man is to leave his parents also implies such a relationship.

    As for David’s love for Jonathan, again there is no implication of homosexuality unless love is sexual love. I am sure there are men in disgruntled marriages who would say the same about their best friend regardless of the gender of their best friend.

  • Sandi,
    I just confirmed that but again, you are leaving out a lot of contextual information so that you seem to want to make them calling pedophilia an orientation in the same way homosexuality is. And the context does not support your view. In fact, there is no official classification of it as a sexual orientation and there is disagreement over the causes.

    So please, provide the whole context of the story rather than decontextualizing it. Otherwise you are spreading inaccuracies.

    In addition, the laws here are based on what scientists here are saying. But even if they went with the Canadian scientists you mentioned, there would be no change needed in the law. Again, remember the context of what is being written.

  • Scientists are calling pedophilia a “sexual orientation” as they do with homosexuality.

  • Fourth, pedophilia is still a crime.
    Fifth, Sandimonious simply does not care. she is on a jihad.

  • I am distressed for thee, my brother Jonathan: very pleasant hast thou been unto me: thy love to me was wonderful, passing the love of women”
    passing the love of women…

    nope. nothing to see there.

  • So two contextual prohibitions for those under the Old Covenant living with the Caanites that had extensive sexual rituals that involved temple séx-workers that were both male and female. Yep, no one should engage in idolatrous séx, I agree even though I am not and never have been under the Old Covenant with Abraham.

    And yes, the Corinth Christians were trying to use all the old Roman ‘loopholes’ to marital fidelity and so Paul listed them all, adultery with men and women, prostitution with men and women. Not about either particular -sexuality but about infidelity. Married couples need not worry about that.

    Romans only refers to those in lust and married people don’t ‘lust’ as their marital bed is undefiled.

    And I will be careful but I’m not so worried about being too inclusive, kind, compassionate, forgiving for against these things there is no law. Now not gathering the outcast, or being too judgmental – those things can get you into much trouble before the Throne.

  • You just keep thumping the Bible as if it was some irresistible bait. And it’s not.

  • Sandi,
    This is my last note to you since you insist on being selective. BTW, if you read the article you provided the link to, you are wrong in your sentence. But I just don’t have the time to continue to argue with someone who cherry picks the facts to make their point.

  • Fundamentalism is partly based on rejection of Evolution as well as the modern historical, contextual study of Scripture. It is based on a propositional view of scripture. The sin in Numbers 25 was not heterosexuality, it was the idol worship. It is a sin to combine any kind of relationship, including heterosexual marriage with idol worship. How do we know that the sin in Romans 1 is not idol worship, but rather homosexuality? Romans 1 certainly stated they worshiped idols and even heterosexual marriage was strongly condemned then. (Deuteronomy 13:6-9) Prostitutes who didn’t worship idols such as Rahab were often very accepted. This is in Hebrews 11:31 and James 2:25. However, sacred Prostitutes who DID worship idols were condemned in Deuteronomy 23:17-18. If prostitutes could be acceptable as long as they weren’t involved with idol worship and the prostitute was not married to someone else, then certainly homosexuality could be acceptable as long as it met certain conditions, such as not combined with idol worship, not with a minor, is completely consensual and the person is not married to someone else at the same time. It also should be as monogamous as possible. And I would also add, the person’s orientation IS Gay. Conversely, people should make sure their orientation IS straight before they get heterosexually married.

  • Daniel,
    Fundamentalism is a rejection of theological liberalism reduction of reality to the physical only. That included the denial of the supernatural as described and interpreted by the Scriptures. Along with that comes disagreements with evolution either in part or in whole. I can disagree with evolution in part because I find no scientific evidence for spontaneous creation in a universe that consists solely of what is physical.

    The thing is, unless you are dealing with the most essential parts of a movement or group, it is wrong to treat the group in question as a monolith. I am also a Socialist but would never look at all Capitalists as the same. After all, there are several forms of Capitalism just as there are several forms of Socialism.

    So too there are different kinds of people who are fundamentalists as the early 20th century would define them.

    As for Romans 1, it is clear that homosexuality is being referred to. Please note the passage from Romans 1 especially regarding women:


    Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. 27 In
    the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and
    were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts
    with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their
    error.

    I point to the women in this issue because of the issue made over the greek word used for men.

    Here, we need to distinguish between how homosexuality should be reacted to in the Church from how it should be reacted to in society. God’s Word rejects it. But that doesn’t imply that society should. In fact, I would argue that society should not and that Christians and homosexuals discuss their views as equals so that regardless of one’s opinions after the discussion, we all have an equal place in society.

  • Sandi is a lovely little passive aggressive lollipop, triple dipped in psycho. You can see that from all of her comments contained herein.

  • Ben,
    I really don’t care to put people I disagree with in such categories. Suffice it for me to say she was selective in her use of info. Why she was? I don’t know and don’t care.

    My views on this are best expressed in the article from my blog linked to below:

    http://flamingfundamentalist.blogspot.com/2012/05/should-christians-support-gay-marriage.html

    I cite that article because how we treat each other involves not just some logic used in debates, but involves the personal because we are all people. And of the articles I have written on this subject, the article linked to above includes that personal aspect.

  • So, you think that Christ has told people that only Caanites cannot have immoral sex, but it is ok for His followers in Leviticus?
    Where does Christ state this “infidelity” in Romans 1?
    As Christ said that He came to fulfill the Law, not abolish it, you think that we should just ignore the other prohibitions – bestiality, etc?
    Lust is immorality Oshtur.
    Where does Christ contradict all of His teachings that homosexuality is immoral?

  • I understand your point, Curt, and I can’t disagree with it. However, I have been in this fight for 45 years, and I have run across the sandi’s of the world many, many times. I think as you read more and more here, you will find other people who are good people, but reach their limit with her.
    I’m very respectful to respectful and respectable people, as many people here who disagree with me will tell you. But I also recognize unrepentant bigots when I see them, no matter how much they try to hide behind the smiles and the scripture and that which they prefer to label as sincere religious belief.
    it doesn’t change who they are, and their intent.
    I suggest you read the book of job, and notice his neighbors.

  • Yes. I think families and children are protected.
    In some places, it honours Christ, who taught against it.
    Just because the west has embraced immorality, does not mean the world need to, but, there will come a time when they will. Christ knew that when He prohibited the act.

  • Ben,
    Actually, when dealing with Sandi, I try to remember the parable of the 2 men praying. IN addition, I think of the important people in my life who disagree with me on the homosexual issue.

    Sandi reminds me of the woman who stopped her car next to me while I was protesting against our wars. She told me that all Muslims want to kill us Christians. I told her that I have Muslim friends and that hasn’t been my experience.

  • The Bible speaks negatively about any sexual behavior combined with idol worship. Revelation 14:4 speaks of heterosexual relationships (probably idolatrous ones) as being polluting and defiling and the men were virgins. That would be similar to saying homosexual behavior combined with idol worship as being “unnatural.” Long hair on men is also considered against nature in 1 Corinthians 11:14. (same Greek word used in Romans 1:26-27- physis). It is also a “disgrace” or atimia. This same word is used in Romans 1:26 where it refers to “unworthy” or atimia passions. So would it be sinful for a man to have long hair because it is “unnatural?” Anyway, there is evidence that this is not Paul’s view because in Romans 2:1, he says the pèrson speaking Romans 1:18-32 should not judge, because they then judge themselves. http://www.patheos.com/blogs/unfundamentalistchristians/2013/10/romans-126-27-a-clobber-passage-that-should-lose-/

  • Who’s your daddy?

    http://strangenotions.com/who-has-the-burden-of-proof-when-discussing-god/

    Before you call names you better check with the experts.
    “For example, if a person is asserting the existence of God to an atheist, he might at some point say, “Well, there’s no evidence that he doesn’t exist!”
    Or, if a person is asserting that God does not exist to a theist, he might at some point say, “Well, there’s no proof that he does exist!”
    In both cases, a logical fallacy known as the argument from ignorance (Latin, argumentum ad ignorantiam) is being committed.
    The principle remains the same: The burden is on you to argue for your own claims.”

    You think you are so smart – this guy has forgotten more about logic than you’ll ever know.
    So either put up or shut up, junior.

    What’s funny is that everyone who reads your arrogant posts will laugh – at you. (I’ll start hahahahahahahahaha)

  • Dan,
    The Bible condemns sexual immorality independent of there being any idol worship. Leviticus is one such part of scripture that does that as well as I Cor 5. Nd there are other parts of Scripture that do the same.

    In Matthew 19, you have God’s design for marriage. However, people are born sinners. And in Romans 1, you have a clear reference to and condemnation of homosexuality independent of idol worship. The lack of idol worship does not sanctify sex outside of a heterosexual marriage. And long hair is not absolutely defined, is relatively defined by culture.

  • DEUTERONOMY 23 – INSTRUCTIONS TO THE ASSEMBLY, VARIOUS LAWS
    A. Those excluded from the congregation of Israel.
    1. (1) Eunuchs are excluded from the congregation of Israel.
    He who is emasculated by crushing or mutilation shall not enter the assembly of the Lord.

    a. By crushing or mutilation: This refers to those emasculated by either birth defect, accident, or by deliberate emasculation.

    b. Shall not enter the assembly of the Lord: When we read this term, it usually refers to the nation gathered before the Lord in worship, such as when they were gathered at Mount Sinai (Deuteronomy 5:22, 9:10, 10:4, and 18:16). But it doesn’t always have this sense.

    i. Deuteronomy 31:30 refers to all the congregation of Israel, while Deuteronomy 31:28 makes it clear that “all the congregation” was gathered through all the elders of your tribes, and your officers. So, in some contexts, the congregation can refer to elders and officers. It may very well be that these exclusions from the assembly of the Lord are exclusions not from the religious life of Israel, but from the political life of the nation.

    ii. Poole suggests that the idea of the assembly of the Lord is the leadership, or the rulers of Israel. These people were barred not from the religious life of Israel, but from the political life of the nation. Trapp agrees, saying on shall not enter the assembly of the Lord: “Shall not go in and out before the people as a public officer.” Clarke adds, “If by entering into the congregation be meant the bearing a civil office among the people, such as magistrate, judge, &c., then the reason of the law is very plain.”

    iii. Isaiah 56:3-5 shows that even eunuchs and foreigners could be accepted before the Lord if they would obey Him, and they would be accepted before the “normal” people who disobeyed God.

    c. Shall not enter the assembly of the Lord: Eunuchs were excluded because God’s covenant with Israel was vitally connected with the idea of the seed, and emasculation is a “crime” against the seed of man. Additionally, most eunuchs were made to be so in pagan ceremonies where they were dedicated to pagan gods.

    https://enduringword.com/bible-commentary/deuteronomy-23/

  • And you are welcome to your own opinion-but not your own facts. Either treat the text rationally in its grammatical/historical/literary context or give it up entirely. You are becoming a laughing stock.

  • I am the one doing so of course. You are of course free to disagree but one thing is certain, there is no conflict with the New Covenant no matter the séx of a spouse.

  • 2000 years of christian theology and 3000 years of jewish theology including the ot and nt texts say youre wrong.

  • So you aren’t going by the Spirit but mere tradition like the Pharisees?

    Unless you can tell me how the séx of a spouse matters for those of us where it makes no difference between male nor female and we are given the authority to bind and loosen those things outside the Covenant it just sounds to me your ‘eye is off the ball’

  • SL has already pointed out to you the relevant texts. If you cant accept God’s word then you are wilfully ignoring the only source of objective truth we have for this issue. You are without excuse. End of discussion.

  • And i’ve pointed out the relevant texts for my position and they are the ones that are most consistent with the New Covenant and those that gather the previously outcast.

    Really slow: sexes and marriage is irrelevant to the next world. Love is the mandate of the New Covenant.

  • It may not have been “officially” classified as a sexual orientation but the persistence of the pattern of arousal is consistent with what we think of sexual orientation. There is a distinct difference between sexual orientation however. Looking at the DSM IV (I”m too lazy to get up to get the more recent editions) the second criteria states that “the fantasies, sexual urges, or behaviors cause clinically significant distress or impairment in social, occupational, or other important areas of functioning.” “Distress” extends to the child as well as the pedophile. Heterosexuals, homosexuals, etc. can act on their urges but their partners have the ability to consent (if they are not consenting, that is a different crime) nor are they particularly distressed by their behavior, and the behavior causes no impairments.

    Going strictly by the definition, the individuals in this article would not be classified as pedophiles simply because of their urges. Once they act on their urges or they became distressing, the diagnosis becomes relevant.

    Can pedophiles exist safely in society? It is not impossible. Note that the research typically cited references pedophiles using the strict definition. Gene Abel’s research indicates that those pedophiles who offend against children have an extremely high probability of offending again. He was granted a federal waiver of reporting these behaviors and was thus able to guarantee absolute confidentiality. Individuals were free to disclose their behaviors without fear of “getting caught.” For every victim that was identified there were up to 600 that were unidentified. Note: this does not pertain to most individuals convicted of sex crimes, only pedophile strictly defined. Those individuals have a substantial risk of re-offending. Abel was able to come up with a treatment protocol was able to help some individuals to avoid re-offending. The success rate isn’t great but it remains one of the better validated treatment modalities.

    To what extent are the “chaste pedophiles” in this article engaging in components of Abel’s treatment plan? The fact that they have not offended suggests that they are doing something right. Is there any advantage to identifying ones self as a “chaste pedophile?” It will certainly focus a certain amount of negative attention on them. If people are capable of discriminating the urge from the act, acknowledging the urges could allow “society” to help the individual maintain his chastity–by monitoring his behaviors, challenging him if he starts associating with children, etc. If handled properly society could be a collaborator with him in helping him to maintain his chastity. Unless this person’s job involved working with children, there should be no legitimate reason why he should have to worry about loss of employment.

  • We’ve been through this before Sandi, Jesus (Jesus is His name, Christ is his title) did not condemn homosexuality. Jesus spoke of man and woman when he talked about marriage. Strictly speaking, He did not say that marriage was “only” between a man and a woman.

    The article you cite says that pedophilia is “like” sexual orientation. And in one dimension it is. But pedophilia, by definition, is a much narrower construct than sexual orientation. That’s why the article says that it’s “like” sexual orientation rather than it “is” a sexual orientation.

  • Mark,
    Actually, there is a positive side to classifying it as an orientation as suggested by some who are studying this subject in Canada. It is to help those who are attracted that way but who have not acted on that attraction.

    The problem with your suggestion is not the suggestion but the society in which we live. We live in a highly punitive society where punishment is the first and preferred response not just to misdemeanors but to anything that is aberrant. Don’t know if people could look at a non-offending pedophile differently from an offending one. The reason why much of our society can now look at homosexuals in a non-punitive way is that they can classify it as normal. Those who don’t regard it as normal want some kind of sanctions placed on homosexuals.

    Can society reach out to help those they consider not to be normal who have not acted on urges that present a clear threat and danger to others while protecting those others from those who act on urges?

  • Prostitution and polygamy were certainly accepted or at least not stigmatized if they didn’t involve idol worship. Paul DOES condemn incest in and of itself in 1 Corinthians 5:1. However, that doesn’t prove that Romans 1 condemns homosexuality in and of itself. He mentions idol worship in Romans 1, but doesn’t in 1 Corinthians 5. Anyway, Leviticus 20, which talks about incest and anal sex between men, (20:13) also says it was prohibited to have sex with a woman during her menstrual cycle. (20:18) In verse 25, it says they should distinguish between clean and unclean animals. Why is homosexuality more like incest than having sex when a woman is menstruating or eating unclean animals? In fact Deuteronomy 14:3 states that unclean meats were toevah or “abomination,” the same word used in 20:13. It must be emphasized that there are not many texts in the Bible about homosexuality.

  • Daniel,
    Idol worship is not what makes prostitution and polygamy wrong. When Paul talks about being with a prostitute, his concern wasn’t whether that was part of idol worship. His concern was that a man became one with someone he shouldn’t have. That is the same concern with adultery and the same concern with homosexuality.

    Plus, to be in a covenant agreement with a women in marriage, one has pledged not to be with anyone else for such is adultery. Yes, the Scriptures draw an analogy between physical adultery and his people worshiping other gods, but that is because of the unfaithfulness involved.

    What Romans 1 is talking about when mentioning sinful sex is not the combination of sex with idol worship, but sex with the wrong person in the first place. That is why I brought in the reference to I Cor 5. That sinful sex doesn’t need idol worship to make it sinful.

  • Yes we have been through this before, and we won’t again, as you have no interest in the truth, it seems. You seem to want to hold onto a perception that is untrue. God bless you mark

  • You have a strange way, Sandi, of not going through this again–simply assert that you are right and I am wrong. If it helps you to sleep any better at night, continue to believe that. It doesn’t make what you said any more right than it was before.
    Blessings.

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