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Many people, in fact most people, including Christians find it difficult to live the so called Christian lifestyle. And indeed there is nothing more difficult than to live striving towards holiness. That is where grace comes in. We are to be sanctified, not to sanctify ourselves or our efforts. Does this mean then that people cannot or should not strive to live accordingly? No. Of course not. Simply because grace works in mysterious ways and the most recalcitrant heart can be brought to submission by the in breaking of grace into their lives. What this means is that people cannot live devoted to their own egos (or the service of other peoples egos) and also be capable of living a holy, grace filled life. There must be a moment when our commitment to self-interest gives way to our commitment to living a grace filled, holy life. There is nothing in the world harder to do because we are sinful beings by nature. This is why Jesus Christ had to become the atonement for our individual sins. He became the self-interest that we each embrace in our own ways while on the cross, and it was there on Calvary that our self-interest was conquered, through him. We have but to accept the grace that was meant to replace the hole that will be left when we abandon our self-interest.

With this in mind, Christians need to remember than when dealing with the recalcitrant heart in others, not to mistake it for being laziness or a desire not to practice self-control. Indeed self-interest requires tremendous self-control. I have always said of atheists (for example) that it takes tremendous willpower to choose every day to live utterly devoted to self-interest. While it is true that we are sinners, and that our nature is to show self-interest, it is more true that we were meant for something more. That something is Jesus Christ and in this we find our true self-interest, rightly aligned and in proper working order.

 

But what of the non-believer who does charity? Here is the thing, people can live for others and still be devoted to misaligned and malformed self-interest, as is the case for those who are not homosexual but who champion homosexual marriage on  the grounds that people should be free to live as they please. This is nothing less than radical autonomy and ego run amuck. It is subverting truth, for the idea of self-interest, even as the self-interest serves someone else. The same can be said for people who while in a good marriage, seek to make divorce easier for others.

 

It is therefore a mistake to believe that those who do not believe, or who are hostile are lazy or lack self-control in a general sense.  What they do lack is self-restraint, and I believe there is a difference between self-control and self-restraint.


Does GOD love unconditionally? No. And such an idea is contrary to what the Bible teaches. GOD’s love is a component of HIS holiness. Being perfectly holy GOD abhors that which does not strive towards holiness, which is why HE “hates” sin. Unconditional love is a nice greeting card sentiment, but it is a myth that has no basis in the Bible.  Evil is never condoned for example, in a world of unconditional love then even sin would have to be tolerated and indeed loved equally to holiness. What is unconditional is the grace bestowed through GOD’s mercy. In other words “once” we are forgiven, sanctified, washed clean, born anew, or any of the other terms we might use then that forgiveness, that mercy becomes unconditional and irrevocable. BUT and this is very important, to be really forgiven means two things.

1: While we continue to sin, our desire to sin no more. This is where non-Christians see hypocrisy when they really only see human nature continuing despite a desire to be changed. The Christian continues to sin. Our fallen nature does not disappear once we commit to Christ.

2:  While the result of Gods mercy is unconditional forgiveness, it is not freely given. We must want it, we must ask for it, and we must embrace it when it is given. God does not and will not save or forgive the unrepentant. GOD’s love is not the love a rapist, aggressive, angry and forced against our will. And on this Jesus Christ is in perfect accord with the Old Testament Prophets. For example, once we are “forgiven” then nothing we do can change that. It is not revoked. But this is not a license to then commit further sin. That is part and parcel of the antinomian heresy. This goes back to faith vs works. Faith is the only way to salvation. Works won’t cut it, but true faith is manifested in works, so while works do not equate to salvation, our faith is questionable if we are not driven to also do good works, just as the candle under a cover gives off no light, neither does the Christian who does not do good works give off the light of Christ.


 

These books should not be confused with the documentary Hypothesis which states there are at least 4 Biblical authors who to varying degrees created the ancient Hebrew Bible, either from previous sources or out of whole cloth and with deliberate cultural agendas. Rather these lost books represent a narrative tradition that was at one time well enough known to the ancient Hebrew Bible audience that their mention would have been familiar and would have lent authority to the newly compiled Bible. The same is true for the latter books and letters that are mentioned in the New Testament including Pauls pre- 1st Corinthian letter, an earlier letter to the church at Ephesus, an epistle to the church at Laodicea and a possible prophetic work hinted at in Jude, though not explicitly named.


When we think of the idea of brooding we tend to think of images like Achilles brooding in his tent beneath the walls of Troy or of Abraham Lincoln and his well attested melancholic brooding through the White House during America’s Civil War. When used as an adjective this is a very apt definition, but it is not the only. In fact Farmers know of a different, fuller and richer definition by looking at the way a hen broods over her precious and utterly defenseless chicks, anxious and fierce. This is the word used as a verb. Now Jesus Christ is described in many different ways both symbolic and descriptive but a description that is used only once Conveys a sense of Jesus Christ’s human nature as it is mingled with the divine aspects of his being in way unlike any other. Jesus Christ is indeed very like a mother hen, brooding over his precious children.

 

“Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you,

how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her

chicks under her wings, and you were not willing.”          

 

                                                                                                                                -Matthew 23:7

 

Have you ever seen a mother hen gathering her wayward chicks under her wing? So it is with Jesus Christ, and we the chicks scamper about never knowing the dangers we face when outside of that protection. The chick that is lost to the roaming hawk is the chick who wandered away from the wing.

But there is still another way to use the word brood. Have you ever seen a large Specter haunted house sitting on a hill top, one that seems to fill up all the horizon, often seemingly larger than its actual size? We might say such a house broods on the hilltop. So it is with Jesus Christ to the faithful. Externally Jesus broods over his children like a mother hen, but internally, through the Holy Spirit his presence comes to brood over our whole being, taking up real space within us. This is why so many mystics and indeed any one of the faith in times of deep inner turmoil and crisis are prone to fits of melancholy. It is in these moments of deepest despair that we are most diminished. And in being diminished many parts of who we are and what we think we want are displaced. And though Jesus Christ fills up that void if we let him it cannot be denied that we pay a great price in ourselves for what we lose to make room for his presence. As it is said in Hebrews, and I wholeheartedly agree, that it is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the Living God. But how much more fearful is it to have that Living God fall into your innermost being.

Thought topics

1: What Bible passages suggest melancholy or a brooding nature?

2: How did the different disciples respond to moments of inner turmoil?


Christianity is born in crisis. What I mean is that no one simply becomes Christian because they were already having great lives. They must first become aware that there is something wrong, and then that there are correctives. Remember that salvation is meaningless to the person who doesn’t know he or she needs to be saved. The Holy Spirit is not like some predator that strikes unawares. When the apostles felt the spirit descend it was only after they were broken and desperate, after their promised earthly king apparently failed and was put to death. I like to evoke it this way.. Christianity was born over three days of pain and uncertainty and of fear and anger and confusion. Later minds called this the dark night of the soul.


Quench: satisfy one’s thirst

Sate: satisfy (a desire or an appetite) to the full

It is true that most people accept the beliefs of their community but there are more than enough people who do not to make this general rule meaningless. Look at Christianity and how it moved across the world compared with say the beliefs of Polynesians. Or for that matter Islam or Buddhism. Religion as a secular concept answers a person’s inner needs. Think of it this way, everyone gets thirsty and thus need to have thirst *quenched, water is the most omnipresent (drink around, but not everyone needs to drink water in order to be merely *quench their thirst; you can drink wine, or soda, or juice, etc. BUT. And this is important, only water exists in a pure form as part of our natural environment. What’s more water is a foundation component of human biology. We are made of water and designed to run on water as if it were a fuel.

Spiritual emptiness is like thirst. When it gets hold of you no amount of “science” or rationale will *sate that thirst. So people turn to things that *quench their thirst only. Now, different people can *quench that thirst in different ways, drinking from the Christian gospel, or from the Tao, or from Sufi meditation or twirling or yoga, or what have you. These all serve to *quench thirst to some degree. But never all the way because these are all substitutes for the substance that is both natural and that we are made of to begin with, namely water.

For this same reason the idea that multiple gods can be true is logically absurd. Because all people come from the same source and are made of the same stuff and ultimately have the same core values and same core desires and motivations. Polytheism is then akin to a soda fountain, filled with sugary drinks that are appealing because they cater to a specific desire, but never actually and fully address the core need, which is spiritual thirst. They *quench but never fully *sate our thirst.

What can fulfill or *sate that core need? Only a single substance, one that occurs naturally, and that we are made up of, so we come back to water. Which by the way is why the Bible so often uses water imagery, from rivers to wells to describe exactly what I am saying here. But of course many other religions use similar imagery so we are left with this conundrum…

There is either a single agent by which our thirst can be *sated, or there are other agents that can at best only *quench our desires but never fully *sate our needs which is the same as to say there are no agents that fully*sate those needs.

Why do I accept the single source as opposed to no source or many sources? Simply because the thirst is very real. People may desire a thing that doesn’t exist, they may long for something that has never been seen, they might seek to become something they are not but a person will never actually suffer a thirst for something that they do not need in order to survive. An alcohol longs for a drink but does not need to drink alcohol. A drug addict seeks for a new, stronger drug but doesn’t need the drug. What’s more the alcoholic and drug addict are not made of alcohol or drugs. They are made of water and thus need water to survive, they need the single source that is both external and at the same time part of what they already are. That is what thirst is, both physical and spiritual thirst, needing to be refilled with a substance that is already a part of you but that for some reason has been depleted or displaced.

That is why I reject polytheism and embrace monotheism. But why do I accept God and not some other monotheistic deity? Two reasons, the first is personal. I simply find my thirst quenched through that particular source of water and not through any other source. I find many other substances to be sweet but none nourishing. The second reason is more complicated, but in a nutshell it is this. I call it the man in the desert motif… I have never run across a Hindu who fell to his knees desperately seeking communion with Kali. Nor have I ever encountered a Buddhist who passionately sought after comfort in the abstract ideal of that philosophy. Does this mean none exist? I won’t say that but in the end all people are motivated by the personal and not the abstract. We are creatures of community and so we sometimes must look for answers in communion with other people.

And that brings me to why I reject atheism…

Atheism is in a sense a form of polytheism, one that rather than claim many or all gods are valid instead makes the claim that no god is valid. This is an absolutist stance that demands two things…

1: That atheists have the only truth (which to be fair is a claim that is made by Christians)

and

2: That any personal experience that contradicts that absolutist atheistic truth must be rejected. In effect saying that your direct personal experience is invalid because I happen not to have shared in it.

Why can I so easily reject atheism? Because even though as a Christian I believe in a very particular idea about God, I value the beliefs of other people for what they are, attempts at alleviating their thirst. Though we share the same need, which is the source of that thirst, we seek alleviate in different ways. I happen to believe that through my religion people are &sated, while other religions people are only *quenched. But atheists rather than respect the thirst of another person, rejects that the other person has a thirst at all or if he does accept that thirst in someone else he ignores the value of having that thirst *sated, let alone *quenched. Now an atheist will argue that he is simply liberating other people from a false thirst, or perhaps will offer something entirely artificial and completely external as a substitute for a natural substance, i.e. science or pure rationalism. But in the end both of these are mere methods to diminish the value of the other person, and to minimize that other person’s thirst.

In this way atheism, though it claims to rooted in humanism is in fact very anti-humanist in its very structure. This is also why purely socialist forms of government MUST by default be atheist, because no individual experience or belief can ever be allowed to override the larger, subscribed truth. In other words, no individual thirst can ever be allowed to be *sated from an un-approved well. The old phrase religion is the opiate of the masses is in fact misaligned because atheism is the real opiate of the masses. It dulls the atheist’s senses towards the experience of his fellow man and sets his own experience as an absolute and not subjective reality. The difference is this… A Christian has an absolute reality that finds common ground in subjective experience, even the experiences of other faiths. That subtle difference is what matters most.

So I and billions of others around the world and throughout history share in the belief in a single God, Jew, Muslim and Christians and in that, though fundamentally different in doctrine, we are all brothers and sisters in a shared core faith making doctrinal issues less about religion and more akin to family squabbles from a very dysfunctional family. With those who subscribe to polytheism or indeed even agnosticism, akin to very distant cousins. Atheists on the other hand, being required to have a commitment to an absolute reality that does not allow for subjective experience is like unto a whole other species of man with no familial relation at all.

Now I will close by saying this. Every atheist on this forum will no doubt attack everything I have said, and probably do so at a very personal level, ignoring the fact that I have said nothing intrinsically negative about anyone’s expressed beliefs. Why will they do this? Because like I said, atheism is a philosophical stricture that demands absolutism to a single system and that must reject out of hand any subjective experience, i.e. the divine or supernatural is not real because I do have not experience the divine or supernatural.

And to be fair, there will no doubt be some Christians and maybe a Muslim or Jew or some other religious person here or there that will disagree with me because I dared to claim that we are all brothers and sisters in the same core faith. To you I say this… Before there was an Islam, before there was Christianity there was God as revealed to and through the Jews and before that revelation there was only people on different spiritual journeys listing to a source they did not fully understand, one that none of us fully understand. That is the core of our three shared faiths and of faith in general. I would suggest that rather than argue about the veracity of the core faith we would be better off confining the argument closer to home. I said above that this is like a family squabble and so it is. I now suggest that the key differences, while of tremendous, earth shattering importance amount to this, who is the right earthly representative, is it Jesus Christ, or Mohamed or is it a still pending Judaic Messiah? All that amounts to three brothers gathered at family table arguing over the father’s last will and testament. They each know that two brothers are illegitimate bastards, all three make their cases but the proofs of their claims rest on their claims themselves. The danger in this is that while only one brother can win out in the end and the other two must lose, if the argument is not kept constructive then all three brothers will end up killing themselves and their respective families but if things are kept constructive then there is at least a chance at reconciliation. And this brings me to my last point. As a Christian I am called to evangelize. It is part and parcel of the whole package, my marching orders you might say. But too often we lose sight of the reason for this by calling on salvation, without really understanding what that actually means. To be saved, to have salvation is nothing less than to be reconciled to God, and to be reconciled to God means to be taken back to that moment when there was no barrier between us and Him. So while many in overzealousness will offend I call on the person so offended to remember that what is happening is not a deliberate attempt to cause offence but an misplaced eagerness to offer reconciliation, or to put it this way, to pick up important items that have been falling out of your bag as you walk down the street and reconcile them to where they belong.

In this I know the core truth of my faith, I know that faiths limitations and though I know the limitations I find no weakness in them, but a firmer more resolved strength.


Among young Catholics there is a growing censorial desire towards adultery and an increase desire to make divorce harder to get which strongly suggests a desire to return to traditional family values, or at least a lament over the loss of such values. But at the same time support for gay marriage, which has long been outside acceptable Christian behavior based on both cultural tradition Biblical edict, despite its being static, sterile, biologically incompatible and culturally new, has increased markedly.

I believe two things have happened to young people at a crucial time in cultural transformation, the decay of the family unit through widespread divorce rates served to create a hollow space in the hearts and minds of young people, a hollow space they desire, either consciously or unconsciously to be filled with any relationship that has the appearance of being committed and lasting. At the same time, since the early 1990’s gay rights advocacy groups shifted their arguments away from personal choice, to family commitments. Homosexuals, no longer argue for the right to be live how they want to live, the so called lifestyle choice, now they argue for the right to be parents, and to engage in marriage ceremonies. The problem for Christians is this… First, to argue that biologically incompatible, sexually inert couples should be allowed to be given the same consideration as biologically normative, sexually compatible couples in committed relationships is a dangerous argument, one that erodes the very foundation of what it means to be a family. To argue against this homosexuals rely on two lines of reasoning, both of them flawed and each rely on the lack of argumentative and rhetorical skill, not to mention general christian and biological knowledge of those whom they argue against.

Homosexuality and Procreation

The first is to turn the argument back around and attempt to compare infertile couples to homosexual couples. We should not allow such arguments to be stand uncontested. The infertile couple, is still fully and in every capacity biologically and sexually compatible. The inability to conceive a child through various dysfunctions of the body is not related to the bodies basic capacity to procreate. BY contrast homosexuals are fundamentally incapable of any act of procreation that is normative to homosexual acts. This is not related to a dysfunction, but to a specific choice of sexual partner, just as masturbation can never lead to procreation neither should homosexuality be considered procreative.

In response you can expect a line of reasoning with either personal attacks, or by retreating into the assumption that the average person does not understand how biological procreation actually functions. The sad truth is that for many honest, well meaning Christians there is a deep lack of human biology. It is worth noting that the same weakness also makes it difficult for many Christians to argue against abortion from a biological perspective.

Another argument is more difficult to address. It posits that marriage is not related to procreation. From a cultural perspective this is actually correct, though it represents a cultural decay, not cultural liberation. It is difficult to argue against gay marriage when as a culture we have distanced marriage from procreation in general. The task for Christian’s is to come to terms with how far we have lost the cultural fight and why. Single parents, no fault divorce, invitro-fertilization, birth control, etc have all conspired to remove procreation from marriage at the cultural level.

Homosexuality and Civil Rights

The second basic argument gay marriage advocates used is one of Civil Rights. This is the argument that stings Christians because it suggests that being opposed to homosexuality means by default that you want to oppress someone. It is the argument that seeks to make a connection between those who love their families and value procreation to the most vile form of American bred terror targeting the black community up to the 1970’s. It is at its core a form of baiting and frankly, Christians need to tread carefully when arguing against this line of reasoning as it can be a veritable minefield to the unprepared. To address this successfully we must first pick the arena. It is foolish to attempt to argue against this on public blogging forums. The ideas are to complex and to nuanced and you can rest assured that this is the line of argument where you will face the most viscous personal attacks. If the argument for the biological aspects of homosexuality are for scoring intellectual points, then this is the arena where blood is drawn and to the unaware Christian who stumbles into this arena it will be a very bloody affair.

Before we can begin to address the arguments against homosexual marriage from a Civil Rights perspective we must first set the terms and understand what they mean. So to begin I ask the following question. Please note that I will use terms that ARE uncomfortable, that ARE offensive and that WILL be hurtful. This is deliberate but is not meant to cause pain, rather I do it to fully illustrate the pain of the subject and why it matters to both a historical understanding and the implications for modern discussion on Civil Rights.

What was it like for a negro slave living in American under Chattel slavery? What better way to answer this question that to show you…

       

In the 19th century, this was what lacking Civil Rights meant. This is the image gay marriage advocates seek to convey. When they accuse you of denying Civil Rights, they are in fact accusing you of being the same sort of men and women who did this to other human beings in an age not so long ago. In more recent memory, long after the last slave was freed, Civil Rights had a different face…

The above picture is not representative of an isolate crime but is instead relative to the systematic, socially and culturally endorsed, civil minded, pre-Civil Rights America.  Even when not technically legal, such actions were considered to be socially responsible. By contrast, homosexuals  have nothing to fear from such systematic atrocities and any action taken by individuals is already fully criminalized through numerous laws, thus effectively giving greater protection to homosexuals, as a protected class than that which other non-protected classes now enjoy.

This too is how gay marriage advocates seek to paint you. We must not make the mistake of thinking anything less and so we should be prepared to be painted as such if we choose to stand on moral principle and protect traditional marriage and family values. We should also remember that traditional, family values have been used by corrupted regimes to do great harm to others, from Miscegenation to the Holocaust. Because of this we need to be very careful of the terms we use, how and when we use them and why they matter in very different ways to different people.

Before we begin, ask yourself prior to any argument, why does traditional family matter? In the face of such hateful imagery why should we take a stand? What shall we say in a manner that has meaning, that is creative and that espouses the value of both life and human dignity?

I suggest, as a piece of advice, look at those photos above and always keep them in your mind because no matter what you say there are those who will see in your argument nothing less than the same inhuman savagery that once justified chattel slavery.

Now lets consider Civil Rights in the Gay Community…

To put it simply. Homosexuals enjoy all the same rights and privileges that any one else does. In fact to suggest that there is a real comparison between the need for Civil Rights and the invention of new Civil Rights in the gay community is patently offensive, which is why the black community is so quick to make it clear the fight for black equality is not the same fight for gay equality. Homosexuals engage in a practice of choice. The sexual yearnings may or may not be a choice, that is another discussion, but acting on those yearnings is a choice. Being black is not a choice. Why does this matter? Because it is not the role of government to legislate protections for choice based behaviors, though to be sure the government does this far too often (see addendum 1). For a black man living in the 19th century, or even most of the 20th century the fact that he was born black was enough to render him unequal. His oppression was directly tied to his biological nature. By contrast any opposition to being gay has to do with behaviors and acts, ranging from the effeminate manner many gay men act to the act of parenthood and its benefit to children. There is no particular hostility towards homosexuals that is based on their innate biological character. Let me explain it this way. For a black man in segregates Alabama, he could not live in the closet, he could not conceal his blackness, he could not live as a white person. He was fundamentally black and so all opposition to him as a person was directed against his fundamental being. On the other hand, a gay man or woman is only noticeably gay based on their actions or their professes sexual orientation. There is also no denying that this goes back to biological compatibility. When blacks were prevented from marrying through miscegenation laws it was to curb the black population and to stop the genetic influence of blacks from entering white population. This was of course wrong But it is also wrong from the gay community to use that history as a bolster for their own arguments. Why? Simply put, because two heterosexual beings engaged in opposite sex, biological normative sexual relations can produce offspring. So while miscegenation was morally wrong, it was at least grounded on a basic biological premise. But two homosexual partners, as I stated earlier are pro-creatively incompatible at a biological level.

But the Christian does not need to stand alone in this. To best argue against the comparison between Gay rights and Civil Rights we have but to look at the recent Amicus Brief filled on behalf of more than 100 black clergymen, and civil rights leaders in Michigan. It is worth quoting some sections…

“those who devote their lives to America’s time-honored family values, morality, and the Christian faith”.

“support the vote of 2.7 million citizens of Michigan who cast their vote and enacted the Michigan Marriage Amendment to secure the sanctity of the traditional family, as it is defined by God in the Bible”.

“The Michigan Marriage Amendment (hereinafter “MMA”) does not serve a
discriminatory purpose. Rather, it states:
To secure and preserve the benefits of marriage for our society and for
future generations of children, the union of one man and one woman
in marriage shall be the only agreement recognized as a marriage or
similar union for any purpose.

Mich. Const. Art. I, § 25. The MMA denies no one the right to marry. Every man
in the State of Michigan is allowed to marry. Every woman in the State of
Case: 14-1341 Document: 74 Filed: 05/15/2014 Page: 83

Michigan is allowed to marry. The MMA simply codifies our long-standing definition of marriage, and it is the right of our state’s voters to do so. UnitedStates v. Windsor, 133 S. Ct. 2675, 2691 (2013)(stating that “regulation of domestic relations” is “an area that has long been regarded as a virtually exclusive province of the States.”)”

“A person’s sexuality and sexual preferences, however, are not their state of being, or even an immutable aspect of who they are, as race is. The truth of the matter is that it is merely activity in which they engage.”

” The state has no responsibility to promote any person’s sexual
proclivities, whether heterosexual, homosexual, or otherwise—and certainly is not
required to accept that one’s sexual conduct preference is the same as an
immutable characteristic like race”. 

Paul Brandeis Raushenbush writing for the Huffington Post says this…“Indeed, when looked at critically, even the liberal mind should rightly see the usurpation of the Civil Rights movement by the gay community as at best problematic and at worst, devious”.

Raushenbush then goes on to say that in America “I can be targeted if I do not conform to gender norms or reach to show any affection for the one I love.”. Why does this matter to us? Because the seeds of the fallacy lay in the very argument itself. Conformity to Gender Norms exist because gender does have a norm, that being procreative in nature. I argue that gender serves no other purpose in creation (for Christians) or in evolution (for secularists) than to ensure procreation. Every facet of ones gender is specifically geared towards the procreative act.

The history of the treatment of African Americans in the United States is unique in its brutality, injustice, and deprivation. Black history has its own narrative of suffering along with an inspiring, ongoing struggle towards dignity and freedom. Black American history should not and cannot be co-opted by any other group — including the LGBT community. In addition, it is an absurdity to claim anyone is being targeted in a negative sense of the word. Liberals do not call it targeting when they reach out to “rock the vote”, or when they pass out condoms to children in public school. The difference goes back to gender normalization. It is simply not targeting to point to a deviation from the norm, it is instead discernment. This is exactly why the gay community, who espouse a drastic redefinition of gender norms, and sexual rights stop short of aligning with those in the polygamous movement or with organizations like NAMBLA, that promote the free and equal expression of love between men and boys. Gay rights groups are very careful not to align with such groups because it raises to them uncomfortable questions of what is normal and who gets to define it, despite the fact that the gay community is attempting nothing less and no mopre moral than the same sort of call for equality of choice and action. The reality is that if we so easily redefine gender, then we have no reason not to just as easily redefine sexual age of consent laws, or to define what is a socially acceptable age gap between sexual partners. For this reason it is very important for the Christian to see the bigger picture. Homosexuality is not isolated, it is connected to a much larger liberal social agenda that seeks in part to confer upon children at ever younger ages all the rights of adulthood. What some Christians see as an erosion of parental authority in liberal social causes is in fact part and parcel of a more general erosion and redefining of what it means to be human.

But what does the Bible really say?

The Bible is a single work of collective wisdom so we must understand it in totality to understand what it actually says on any single issue. So what does the Bible say about homosexuality? First of all there is no doubt that the Bible condemns sin as a moral sin. One need only to look at Leviticus 18:22, Judges 19, Romans 1:18, 1 Corinthians and 1 Timothy to see that homosexuality is at best considered to be a grave sin, at worst an abomination before the Lord.  It is important to know these pertinent verses but what is more important it the ability to move beyond them and see the Bible as a cohesive whole, as a chain with individual links holding together a greater whole. In this light why then is homosexuality a sin? Specifically it goes back to the idea of Family as God ordained it. If we were to create a brief timeline we would see how important procreation is to Gods will.

* Before Adam and Eve were cast out of the Garden God speaks to Eve about procreation.

* Noah is chosen to save mankind through his descendants. Not to mention the presence of breeding pairs of animal. God could have simply recreated the earth and yet he chose to allow the earth to flourish through procreative acts.

* Abraham is chosen in his old age past the age of parentage and the first covenant is marked through procreation. Without procreation there would be no great nation.

* Time and time again we are given generations in the bible. Without a value on procreation there would be no value on familial history.

* One of the ten commandments is to honor your father and your mother.

* The world is saved through Jesus Christ who is both man and God. Without procreation there would be no Virgin Mary and thus no Jesus Christ.

So while we can argue all we want about the purpose of God there is no doubt that his purpose was carried out through procreation and that He places high value on procreation. By contrast, anything that goes against the procreative ability God takes a hostile view of, from Spilling ones seed, to homosexuality, to the failure of parents to provide for their children, etc.

What does this all mean to Christians

Having said all this, let us now reflect on what it means to be Christian… We are all sinners and all in need of saving Grace. When we were warned of passing judgement on others while we have a plank in our own eye it was not, as some liberals will argue, a caution not to issue any criticism. That is absurd and dangerous moral relativism. Christians are called to evangelize and to show discernment. When the stakes are death it would be a cruelty not to rebuke others for their sins, just as it would be a cruelty for our own sins to go unnoticed by our fellow Christians. Instead it was a call to stay away from hypocrisy in all its forms. So while we might rightly condemn homosexuality, we must do so with an eye towards serving the glory of God and saving our fellow man. We must never allow ourselves to become moral elitists nor should we lose sight of our own sinful nature. It is far too easy to convince ourselves that what really matters to God is everyone else’s sin, but not our own.

Remember that the world does no claim to be an absolute truth, so it is free to define truth any way it wishes. The world makes no claim to moral authority, so it is free to embrace any morality, or none at all. Christians on the other hand are called to a single truth and a single moral authority. If one person fails the measure of the world, then the world takes no notice, but if one Christian fails the measure of God, then the world takes notice of all Christians. To be a community of the faithful also means that the world will judge us by those in our community.

Also remember that while the issues at hand could be qualified as a Gay agenda or you are opposed, or a Gay rights movement if you support, it is actually a personal, individual concern so when choosing our words remember that at the other end of our words are real people, often people who are confused, angry, alone, looking for love and compassion. The truth is we love one another in ways that are complex and often confounding so to stand against the sinfulness of homosexuality is morally correct it not particularity helpful to a dialogue. As Christians we need to do as good a job, or better of loving the sinner, as we do of hating the sin and we should always remember that when we hate any sin, we hate not only the sin of others, we also hate the sin within our own hearts because Jesus Christ died for all of us, the adulterer, the murderer, the homosexual, the tax cheat, the liar, you and me. Ours is but to strive to live a new life according to the way of Jesus Christ and to show that way to others, sometimes correcting them, sometimes, pointing out their sins, and sometimes by getting out of the way and allowing God to the work he wants to do in their hearts and minds.

Oswald Chambers once wrote…

“One of the hardest lessons to learn comes from our stubborn refusal to refrain from interfering in other people’s lives. It takes a long time to realize the danger of being an amateur providence, that is, interfering with God’s plan for others”.

Now be firm, be resolute, stand under the protection of the living God, but also stand with your God given strengths be it silence or speech, argument or example and remember to be catechized in Biblical truths and why they matter.

***addendum 1 why the government should stay out (expand) – Puritans endorsed purely civil marriage ceremonies, stripping religion from the matrimony… By giving the government authority to legislate marriage, be it in favor of or against homosexuality we give the government authority to define what marriage itself is for everyone.

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