For The Love Of Gay: Part 1

Shannon Ivey
April 2, 2011 Posted by Shannon Ivey smjivey@gmail.com

Last week my dear friend Amanda said, “go big or go home.”

So, here I go. . .terrified. . .but big.

Allow me to prepare for our journey with a little home-grown wisdom:

My Mother always taught me to judge a tree by the fruit it bears. She said that God reveals His justice to the heart, not the eyes, as the eyes have been stained by the tears of ego.

That said, and with all of my heart, I believe that God dearly loves the gay community and that the fruit of our judgment is not only rotten, but misinformed and wrong.

The Roots of Judgment

The modern American judgment of the homosexual community is undoubtedly rooted in various religious traditions.  However, as a Christian, I have no choice but to write from my own spiritual perspective.

While many discard the Bible as just another book, I don’t.  I can’t.  The experiences of my life have revealed the Bible to be an ancient and sacred text whose truths, while often bastardized by humans, have remained ever-growing and evolving for those who truly seek.  I, beyond the shadow of all doubt, believe the Bible clearly commands us to always operate from the platform of love and compassion for ALL; this includes the gay community.

Five years ago I attended Christ Chapel of the Valley’s annual Christmas Presentation in North Hollywood, CA.  Like many churches around the United States, their holiday pageant sparkled with music, scripture readings and the silent holiness of the Nativity.  This particular church, however, was different; it was made up of a unique Christian minority who identify themselves as Gay, Lesbian, Bi and Transgendered (GLBT or LGBT).

What struck me most about the service was not the sexual orientation of the congregation, but the testimonies given.  One by one, stories were told of people being exiled by families, bullied by communities, shackled by thoughts of suicide and/or filled with the doctrine that God no longer loved them because they were gay.  It was heartbreaking.  Many told of humiliating “outings” that were done publicly and in the name of “love.”   Some cried because they were left to celebrate Christmas alone.  Others cried because they hadn’t seen their families in years.  However, what utterly broke my spirit were those who had been damned by the thought they were unworthy of God’s love.

Not worthy of God’s love?

I cried for days.

I was guilty.

Yes, I was one of those raised in a small Southern Baptist church that subscribed to this soul-crushing philosophy.  I found myself tortured; the tradition of my youth pulled in violent opposition to the crystal clear understanding that this judgment was not of God.

I knew right then and there that God would not leave me without biblical proof of my convictions.

A Biblical Perspective

My insatiable search for answers led to me straight to my couch.

One night, while flipping through the channels, I stumbled upon a marathon for the show called Taboo.  Piquing my curiosity were the episodes exploring cultures from all around the world who retained identifiers and rituals from the ancient past that dealt with the concepts of a third sex, sexual identity and forbidden marriages.

This got me thinking –

I realize that many of you, like me, grew up with the “gay verses” being the typical response to the apparent dilemma of homosexuality.  (The most popular being:  1 Corinthians 6:9-10, Leviticus 18:22 & 20:13, Romans 1:26-27)   Rather than revisiting the argument, as I have much more important information to share, I encourage you research the historical context surrounding the original pre-translated versions of each scripture.  I would also encourage you to dissect the innumerable set of rules throughout the Bible that the community and/or the church have deemed dated and therefore unsuitable for a modern practical application in our every day lives.  You’ll be surprised.

I would like to instead focus our attention on an alternative biblical view that many are attempting to label the “homosexual apologetics.”  I find this term short-sighted and stained with ego, as I believe the following logic to be sound biblical proof (for those who need it) of God’s love for the homosexual community.

Introducing:  The Eunuch.

Please note the following to be an admittedly all-too-brief summary of a very colorful and important people from our history.

The modern understanding of the term “Eunuch” is flawed; a man whose genitals have been removed for the purpose of royal/community/religious service (aka Castrato) is only partially correct.  Throughout history and in many different cultures, a Eunuch was often an anatomically whole male who was “impotent” with regards to women.  In other words, men who were unattracted to, and therefore could not procreate with, women.  According to the book “Eunuchs and Castrati: A Cultural History” by, Piotr O. Scholz –

“Even professional scholars often equate eunuchs to men who have been emasculated or castrated.  Yet there is no inherent reason why a eunuch has to be a castrato.”

Today, found in pockets all over the world, the ancient term “eunuch” survives and still defines both the “castrato” and those unattracted to the opposite and attracted to the same sex.  In America, we’ve relabeled our “Eunuchs” Gay, Lesbian, Bi and Transgendered.

Does the Bible discuss Eunuchs?

In short, yes.  Eunuchs played pivotal roles in the stories of Queen Esther, Daniel, Paul and Phillip.

Is this a mistake?  God doesn’t make mistakes.

So then were Eunuchs born or made?

Matthew 19:12 says:

“For there are eunuchs who were born that way, and there are eunuchs who have been made eunuchs by others—and there are those who choose to live like eunuchs for the sake of the kingdom of heaven. The one who can accept this should accept it.”

How does God feel about the Eunuch?

Isaiah 56:4-5 says:

“4 For this is what the LORD says: “To the eunuchs who keep my Sabbaths, who choose what pleases me and hold fast to my covenant— 5 to them I will give within my temple and its walls a memorial and a name better than sons and daughters; I will give them an everlasting name that will endure forever.”

Is a Eunuch an “abomination that will not inherit the kingdom of heaven”?

Acts 8:36-38 says:

“36 As they traveled along the road, they came to some water and the eunuch said, “Look, here is water. What can stand in the way of my being baptized?” [37] Philip said, “If you believe with all your heart, you may.” The eunuch answered, “I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.”38 And he gave orders to stop the chariot. Then both Philip and the eunuch went down into the water and Philip baptized him.”

So if the Word provides such a clear compassionate (and beloved) response to homosexuality, why then are we hell-bent on crucifying the gay community?

I believe it is because we, as a people, don’t want to be wrong and therefore, forfeit our relationship with God.

So, what if I’m wrong?

What if finding compassion from tracing the roots of homosexuality to the Eunuch is absolutely wrong?

Consider 1 Samuel 16:7 as our golden ticket:

“7 But the LORD said to Samuel, “Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The LORD does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.”

If our hearts are operating from a place of compassion and love, we have nothing to lose but the burden of judgment.  If God finds your heart to be full of love and abiding by the command “judge not lest ye be judged” – what on earth do we have to lose?

Fact:  The fruit yielded from the old adage, “hate the sin, love the sinner” is an alarming epidemic of teen suicides, a palpable disgust for the church/God and a population of adults who are broken by Christian clichés.  Allowing the word “hate” to exist within the pages of our doctrine inevitably justifies hateful acts.  Teaching children that somehow being gay is against God, unnatural and an abomination is resulting in gay youth being 3 times more likely to commit suicide.  That means someone’s son, daughter, sister or brother is gone because of our refusal to think with our hearts.   I tell you, my friends, this fruit is not from God.

It’s time, dear ones, to be brave.  Shedding the cloak of tradition is hard, but the peace that comes with compassion will most assuredly pass beyond all understanding.

Selah.


***Homosexuality is a subject riddled with strife and judgment.  “For The Love of Gay” will be divided into two parts that will cover more territory in the hope of uncovering common ground.  You may click here to read PART 2.***

 


Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

68 Responses to For The Love Of Gay: Part 1

  1. Kevin on April 2, 2011 at 5:07 pm

    Great article, very thought provoking. I can’t wait to read part 2.

    • Shannon Ivey on April 4, 2011 at 8:10 pm

      Thanks! I’m not sure I have the stomach for the lashing though. ;)

  2. Mary on April 2, 2011 at 5:19 pm

    Christ admonishes us to love the sinner, and hate the sin, that is not permission to excuse the sin. Now, I know some left wing Christians in name only, have been attempting to subvert Christ’s teachings, inferring there was condoned active homosexuality in the bible that is being ignored, but it’s simply not true. They twist the facts to suit their agenda, ignoring the fact that adultery is sinful, irregardless of whether it’s homosexual or heterosexual. These leftists attempt to redefine love as meaning sex. They infer that the biblical story of Naomi and Ruth, is an example of lesbianism, instead of what it is, a story where a daughter in law, refuses to abandon her mother in law, after the death of her husband, and tells her that she remains her daughter, her family, and will take care of her.

    Just as the story of Daniel, the term love, means the love of friends for each other. Love is not sex, and no matter how desperately the left want to construct something that doesn’t exist, they can’t change that fact. The Gospels are consistent throughout, there’s no shades of grey there. There are times when no matter how much one loves another, you can not lie to them, merely to tell them something they want to hear. It’s not love, to lie to someone, because it might hurt their feelings about something they are doing that is wrong. The faith isn’t a country club, it’s committing to Christ’s teachings, to strive to be like Christ, to look into one’s hearts and confront our sinful nature, and repent and sin no more.

    Eunuchs, were those who were castrated, or those born or rendered impotent, incapable of engaging in sexual activity. They were chosen to guard, because they could in no way abuse their positions and engage in sexual activity with those they protected. Eunuchs were not homosexuals. Again, to wish to assume so, is the same as one wishing to ignore other sinful behavior, that is called being in denial. It’s a sin against God, as well as an attempt to corrupt the innocent, if one seeks to promote that denial in others, it’s also an act of self deception.

    • Shannon Ivey on April 2, 2011 at 5:28 pm

      Thanks for your opinion! I do have to disagree, Eunuch’s were not always men who were castrated.

      • Mary on April 2, 2011 at 5:40 pm

        Shannon, if you scroll up and read what I wrote, you’ll see that I stated that eunuchs were those who were castrated, or those who were born or rendered impotent. Nor were men able to merely claim they were impotent, they were examined by physicians to verify it.

  3. Mary on April 2, 2011 at 5:38 pm

    I wanted to add one more thing, as I forgot to in the previous comment. You cite the teen suicides, there has not been one, that was the result of Christian persecution. Let’s start with Tyler Clementi, the young man was tormented by a young woman who was an atheist and a young man who was a Hindu, neither were Christian. The spate of other suicides, a handful in all, half were not even teenagers, and those who teased and persecuted them, were neither Christian or using Christian belief. Two were boys around ten years old, and they weren’t even gay. The investigation into what happened to them, was squashed by the mainstream media as it didn’t fit the convenient narrative they prefer. Rather, because like other Massachusetts schools, they’ve adopted the radical indoctrination promoted by GLSEN, in which teachers ask students if they love a friend who happens to be of the same gender, and then turn it around and tell the child, well, that could mean that you’re gay. In both instances, in different towns, at different schools, their classmates started teasing them, and it went on for a long time. In the other reported cases of the teen suicides, there was not one instance of the bullying being a result of Christian belief. So, if you’re a Christian, then you should be aware that you are bearing false witness, dishonestly seeking to attribute something, perhaps in the interest of excusing something you know is a sin. God loves you, but he requires you to confront your own behavior, and recognize what you might be doing or contemplating that is sinful and repent.

    As to the imprecation to judge not, Christ was quite clear on that, however, Christ didn’t tell us not to discern, not to make personal judgments of rejecting sinful behavior. In fact, Christ stated that while we are called to encourage others to abandon sin, if the sinner refuses to repent, and seeks to corrupt others, including the innocent, we are to abandon them.

  4. Shannon Ivey on April 2, 2011 at 6:01 pm

    I work at a University, I see Christian to gay persecution daily. I know that we are a major contributor to this problem, which is why I’m standing up.

    I’m often amazed how fellow Christians are quick to qualify and quantify others relationship with God. My witness is to God and the scars on my soul are anything but false.

    The narrow path at this point is to love, not hate. Hating is easy.

    • Mary on April 2, 2011 at 7:34 pm

      Please cite examples of the Christian persecution of gays you claim to see on campus every day. I work on a campus, and what I see are radicals on campus, students, professors and other university staff accusing Christians of being guilty of something for merely having personal beliefs, for refusing to affirm glbtq, etc.. lifestyles, etc.. Christians are also judged guilty of hate crimes, merely for expressing their opinion in defense of their faith, when it’s slandered on campus. There is no right to violate the religious freedoms of others, nor is there a right to demand the religious abandon their beliefs to affirm the choices of others.

      • Shannon Ivey on April 2, 2011 at 8:00 pm

        I’m not sure how owning up to the fact that this logic is bearing ugly fruit and trying to better ourselves is in any way demanding that we abandon our faith.

        Because my students often read my posts, I’m not going to cite examples. All I can say is that I currently live in the South and it happens. . .often.

        • Mary on April 4, 2011 at 4:29 pm

          How convenient.. but then again, perhaps my relaying examples of the false charges of hate made by radicals, that are in fact actually hate crimes against Christians, prevented you from being able to hide behind those Trojan horse claims?

          • Gogetem777 on April 20, 2012 at 12:49 pm

            They will put you out of the synagogue; in fact, a time is coming when anyone who kills you will think he is offering a service to God…..Gays are one of the most mistreated in Christian community….be honest when nwas the last time you heard a sermon..on liars..or thieves…it always falls down to the same main ones…No to mention…you do the exact same thing and are guilty of it.. but accuse others…Modern day pharisee..Self righteous and yet point out a brothers log but when it comes to you its not bad enough.. or your not as evil as those *people* becasue your having intercourse with a man or woman..*yet condemns are ok?? and and to love someone of the same gender becomes a crime equal to death..Please Go study the Word and show yourself approved.. Convenience Christianity is soo ridiculous and Im sure it makes Jesus look down and say wow ..this is the church i bled for..**shakes head**….Sad All i can feel from your spirit in discernment is a lack of Compassion and fruit..Judgment condemnation but no fruits of the Spirit to back it up..Clouds with no rain.. Sorry brother but your in worse danger than the sinner down the block….The one that thinks he is rich and yet is so blind..

    • Misty on April 7, 2011 at 12:53 pm

      Shannon, I was just wondering if you ever see gay to Christian persecution where you work?

  5. shana on April 2, 2011 at 6:02 pm

    This was much better than I could have ever said. What I always tell my family is love my cousin the way he is bc god made him that way

    • Shannon Ivey on April 4, 2011 at 8:11 pm

      Thanks! I’m glad your cousin has someone like you!

  6. Cathy on April 2, 2011 at 6:05 pm

    Shannon, this is beautifully written. My only comment so far is. Eunuchs, whether born or rendered as such, if they profess to be Christians, must be obedient to God’s precepts. That includes abstinence from sex outside of marriage blessed by God. All believers are subject to the requirement to confess and repent of sin from our lives. Repent means turn away from and not return to.

    • Shannon Ivey on April 2, 2011 at 7:23 pm

      We won’t let them marry. Next week’s article is on marriage.

      • Mary on April 2, 2011 at 7:43 pm

        Shannon, there are legal civil unions. Marriage originates as a religious ceremony, and government only sought to license and recognize marriage so as to provide legal standing for children born within the union of marriage. There is no constitutional right to marriage, but there is a right to civil unions, because that is what state governments provide for heterosexuals. The civil unions provided to heterosexuals, doesn’t have to be recognized as “marriage” by churches. Whereas what homosexual activists are demanding, is imposing that churches be forced to recognize homosexuals as being married. This isn’t about any right, or seeking committed relationships, that’s been proven already, as in states where gay “marriage” has been legalized, there is no monogamous, committed relationship, it was all a farce to get a foot in the door to persecute churches. In Massachusetts, upon the legalization of gay “marriage” the same day they filed suit against Catholic Charities adoption agency, demanding they be forced to provide gay and lesbians adoption rights.

        I could go on and on, but I’m getting the idea, that you aren’t so much a Christian, as you are a non believer, seeking to whinge away at Christian churches demanding they abandon their beliefs and affirm your lifestyle choices. Frankly, if you don’t believe in Christ’s teachings, that is your right, but you don’t have the right to demean and seek to subjugate the Christian faith, or the rights of Christians to hold their beliefs and not be persecuted. In all candor, the discrimination is against Christians, not homosexuals. In fact, it’s homosexual radicals seeking to persecute and violate the rights of others, based on their hatred and intolerance for Christians.

        • Shannon Ivey on April 2, 2011 at 7:55 pm

          First – marriage didn’t originate in the church. More on that in part 2.

          Secondly – I’m amazed that you, who I don’t know, can judge my relationship with Christ. Is it so terrifying for you to actually love gay folks? Is it so wrong to try and seek a more harmonious answer? I agree – Christians are being persecuted, but realize that is much from our own doing.

        • Janelle on April 5, 2011 at 3:01 pm

          Mary,
          I actually appreciate your commentary because it so BLATANTLY supports the arguments that Shannon is making in this article and which I assume will be continued in part 2 of her thought-provoking and brave article.

          You say, “Whereas what homosexual activists are demanding, is imposing that churches be forced to recognize homosexuals as being married.”

          You couldn’t be more wrong. Many LGBTQ people already have affirming churches, synagogues, mosques, and spiritual communities that ALREADY affirm their loving, committed relationships. They don’t need your personal church or perspective to “bless” them.

          What the LGBTQ community is seeking FIRST is the LEGAL protection granted to “married” heterosexual couples- whether those ceremonies were performed in a church or religious institution at all.

          SECOND- you question what “Christian Persecution” looks like. Well I will use your OWN words to give you an example. When you confront another G-d-loving Christian (Shannon being an IMMINENT AND BLATANT example) with words like this:

          “… I’m getting the idea, that you aren’t so much a Christian, as you are a non believer, seeking to whinge away at Christian churches demanding they abandon their beliefs and affirm your lifestyle choices.”

          That is the type of thing that causes kids to commit suicide. It causes Christians to run from their faith and their relationship with G-d because they are somehow confused that their elders and spiritual leaders tell them that being a Christian only looks ONE way.

          While I am not Christian, I’m pretty sure you’re not Jesus.

          Stop deciding for everyone else what being a good Christian means and reconnect with your own relationship to G-d. I have the distinct feeling that your relationship with him has nothing to do with anyone else’s.

          Thank you, Shannon for being brave and causing many to return to that personal relationship with their Creator to wrestle with this important issue.

          • Misty on April 7, 2011 at 12:59 pm

            Janelle,

            May I ask why you chose to say G-d….instead of typing G.O.D.?

          • Janelle on April 15, 2011 at 3:40 pm

            Misty, I am responding to you (not sure why the thread is putting this comment above instead of in direct response to you).

            I am a religious Jew. In my religion, as a general rule of thumb, practicing Jews do not write the name G-d because of the laws delivered by Moses which are found in Deuteronomy 12:3-12:4. In this passage, the Jews are instructed to destroy anything and everything associated with their rival’s gods, and they are not to let this happen to their own G-d. Writing G-d instead is one way to prevent others from destroying the name of G-d.

            Jews interpret the law given by Moses as a prohibition against transcribing the name of G-d, because they feel that if G-d is recorded onto a piece of paper, there is the possibility that the name will be disrespected or destroyed in some way. The general concern with writing G-d in its true form is that it might be erased, defaced by being crossed out or scribbled upon, torn, thrown in the trash, or ravaged in some other way. Writing G-d instead communicates the writer’s idea effectively, but since G-d is incomplete, there is no risk of defacement.

            Many Christians also practice this.

  7. Becky on April 3, 2011 at 2:38 am

    I wasn’t going to comment because I don’t like jumping into serious discussions (and Shannon, please feel free to step in at any time if you believe I’m out of line), but the multiple comments of one poster made it impossible to provide a reply to a specific part and also left me feeling compelled to speak up.
    Mary, I don’t know you from another soul on this planet. You could work at the same university I attend or the one down the street or one across the country. The point being, I don’t know the first thing about your life, nor do you about mine. Please permit me to share a bit.
    I am young, compared to many. I come from a small town and now live in one not terribly bigger. I am a daughter, a sister, an aunt, a friend, and a wannabe dog-owner. I’m dying to be a parent myself eventually. I am a God-fearing Bible-believing born-again Christian. I was born and raised in the very buckle of the Bible belt. I am in a loving, committed relationship with the person I intend to marry someday. However, I am also irrevocably gay, so I live with the constant nagging fear I may never be able to do that. And no, a civil union is not what we’re after. It is nowhere near the same thing and I honestly believe that as an adult of sound mind I bear the right to marry the one I love, even if she is a woman. (I truly can’t wait to read the next installment and get our host’s take on the matter.)
    I don’t know if you care at all, Mary, or even if you’re still reading, but this is just a slice of who I am. You don’t know me. You don’t know who’s been cruel to me, let alone their personal belief system. And I don’t know you either. But nor do I hate you. It hurts my heart to see someone who wears Jesus’ name speak so coldly, but it is His name which still calls me to love you.

    • Mary on April 4, 2011 at 6:02 pm

      Perhaps mere words on a page can seem cold, but I will repeat what I wrote in an earlier comment, it’s not kind, or an act of love, to refuse to speak the truth to someone, because you don’t want to tell them something they might not want to hear. It wouldn’t be Christian, or in any way helpful to you or anyone to agree with your misrepresentation/denial of what Christ’s teachings inform us of.

      I grew up in a small town, in New England, my parents divorced, and growing up, I left the church, because I felt there was hypocrisy in the church. In my immaturity, I lacked the discernment that would have helped me differentiate between honest, committed members of the clergy and those who were only going through the motions, and the church as a whole. That said, I never abandoned my faith in Christ. I considered myself more or less secular as a teenager and young adult. I had friends who were gay, many of them young men who were exploited by older gay men, because they were poor and were having a hard time making ends meet. One friend, Kevin, died of AIDs in 1986. I met many of them as a young woman involved in the local punk rock scene in Boston where I lived at the time.

      No, you don’t know me, you don’t know that I used to be a liberal democrat, that I supported gay rights, I at one time protested on behalf of gay rights to be foster parents and adopt. I supported civil unions. You also don’t know that when I got “married”, I had a civil union (that is the legal definition of getting “married” by a justice of the peace, it always has been. I know the words of the ceremony, I’ve read the forms and legalese that defines the civil ceremony. After our daughter was born, my in-laws convinced me to have my daughter baptized, and I decided to go along with it. The church didn’t recognize what my husband and I had, as “marriage” and they said so. I didn’t get angry, because at the time I felt that what the church felt didn’t define what existed between myself and my husband. Nor did I feel I had any right to violate the church’s rights to believe as they did. What was important to myself, and my husband was, that we loved each other. We had legal recognition by the state.. and the fact is, the only thing that is different between the civil ceremony heterosexuals have, and what homosexuals have, is federal recognition..

      Irregardless of whether we’re talking about a gay or lesbian couple, neither couple could conceive a child, naturally together, so if they sought to have a child, while one member of the couple could be a biological parent, the other member of the couple, would have to legally adopt the offspring, or they could adopt, which would also involve the establishment of legal obligation for the child.

      Heterosexual couples, have children naturally together, and the state chose to recognize marriage, which was a purely religious sacrament, for no reason other than to protect the children that naturally occurred as a result. Long before there was a civil ceremony, the state demanded the licensure of the religious sacrament of marriage, and the registration of children born to document parenthood and protect inheritance. There is no legitimate legal standing to claim a civil right for homosexuals to marriage, because there is none. The Loving case dealt with the state refusing to license and recognize a man and a woman, to deny them the ability to have a marriage performed, because one was white, and the other black.

      The word marriage comes from the old Anglo Saxon, and a root of that comes from the French (not the ancient, pre-Christian Gauls, but from the Christian era of French). There is no word for marriage for any of the pagan people, in fact, what little we do know about the various pagan peoples were that their unions for the most part weren’t even contractual, and they could be purely temporary in nature. The ancient Romans based their religious beliefs on the ancient Greeks, and the ancient Greeks didn’t use the word marriage. Also, the Greeks unions were contractual in nature and dramatically different than marriage.

      We know much more about the indigenous tribal people of the US, and the facts are, there was no “marriage” ceremony, but a kinship system, some of the tribes formed pairs based on members of the same clan, others didn’t. All were contractual, based on the barter system, and most were matrilineal, they were required to be monogamous, but they could be temporary, with one partner or another allowed to walk away at any time.

      What we as Christians know, is that Adam and Eve were the first marriage, God himself joined them. From them sprang the Jewish people, with their covenant with God, and his rules governing, defining marriage. Homosexuality was forbidden, considered immoral and sinful. You can quibble about that if you choose, but both the old and new testament are clear on this. In fact, scientific studies have validated all the requirements of ancient Jewish law, from God’s covenant, from the issue of the shell fish, to the need to wait 8 days before a bris is allowed on a newborn male infant.. science has revealed that it takes that eight day wait, for a baby to have enough of it’s own immune system, to be able to be protected from such a procedure.

      My return to my faith, and the church occurred slowly, and involved my family, my husband becoming severely ill, and the support of a wonderful member of the clergy. I found myself turning to God, and ultimately placing myself utterly in his hands. Remembering the Gospels, and rereading scripture, and so much of it making sense. Confronting my wrongs, my ego and all my other baggage. Each day is a commitment to doing the same and striving to live a life that is a Christ like as possible. It’s not easy, but I know it wasn’t my intent to hurt you. I struggle, but I do know that when I recognize myself slipping, or feeling hurt, angry or impatient, when I turn those feelings over to God, and commit myself to repenting of that weakness, I feel a sense of peace. When I commented, in fact, to have said anything other than the fact, would have been treating you as less than, it would have been disrespectful to you as a thinking, feeling human being. If you truly love God, you shouldn’t fear him, I don’t fear him, but I do not wish to do anything that hurts him, that dishonors Christs’s sacrifice for us. When we sin, when we pridefully maintain denial of our sin, we cause God, our Father pain. Again, if you truly love God, you must be aware that to continue in active homosexuality, you are sinning. When you pretend that it isn’t sin, and in fact advocate that Christ’s teachings on this are wrong, or need to be changed, you are actually seeking to corrupt the innocent, and that is an even worse sin. I say this out of love and compassion for you as a human being. I get a lot of comfort, and in fact was helped when I started to turn to Psalm 91, I’d highly recommend you reading it. Also, here is one example of biblical verse on the subject 1 Cor. 6:8-20

      8 Instead, you yourselves cheat and do wrong, and you do this to your brothers and sisters. 9 Or do you not know that wrongdoers will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor men who have sex with men[a] 10 nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. 11 And that is what some of you were. 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.
      Sexual Immorality
      12 “I have the right to do anything,” you say—but not everything is beneficial. “I have the right to do anything”—but I will not be mastered by anything. 13 You say, “Food for the stomach and the stomach for food, and God will destroy them both.” The body, however, is not meant for sexual immorality but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body. 14 By his power God raised the Lord from the dead, and he will raise us also. 15 Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ himself? Shall I then take the members of Christ and unite them with a prostitute? Never! 16 Do you not know that he who unites himself with a prostitute is one with her in body? For it is said, “The two will become one flesh.”[b] 17 But whoever is united with the Lord is one with him in spirit.[c]

      18 Flee from sexual immorality. All other sins a person commits are outside the body, but whoever sins sexually, sins against their own body. 19 Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; 20 you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.

      Footnotes:

      1. 1 Corinthians 6:9 The words men who have sex with men translate two Greek words that refer to the passive and active participants in homosexual acts.
      2. 1 Corinthians 6:16 Gen. 2:24
      3. 1 Corinthians 6:17 Or in the Spirit

      • Shannon Ivey on April 4, 2011 at 6:51 pm

        I appreciate your comments, and it sounds like you’ve traveled one of millions paths to reach your personal convictions. However, what you are failing to recognize is that so have I. I’m a person, Mary – with a story full of sorrow. I’m not as base as you may think and the scars marked on my soul are deep. I understand that you disagree with me, and that’s fine – but God and I are good.

    • Shannon Ivey on April 4, 2011 at 8:13 pm

      Becky – It is for you that I’m standing up. Never bow your head in shame – you will have rights soon. Thank you so much for your comments!!

  8. Becky on April 3, 2011 at 2:52 am

    (I got cut off by my phone for rambling, sorry.)
    The point being, yes, there is fault in both camps, but picking and choosing what we don’t like about one another is something Jesus spoke against more than once. Blind hatred against whole groups is not what we are called to do.
    I’m not out to shatter the foundation of the church. In fact, I am blessed enough to attend a great little part of the body. All I want is to live my life in peace; to one day have a house and be able to provide for my wife and kids. I’m sorry if such an existence threatens you or anyone else.
    So I’m not entirely off-topic:
    Shannon, I’ve been reading your blog intermittently for a while, usually when Jennifer posts links, but I always enjoy it. You have an amazingly informative style and I love that you truly seem to know your stuff. I had never heard this definition of eunuchs before and found it very interesting. Thank you for doing what you do.

  9. Ellen on April 3, 2011 at 5:46 am

    Mary: you are gay. So is your skewed logic.

    • Misty on April 7, 2011 at 1:00 pm

      So totally uncalled for! :(

  10. KK on April 3, 2011 at 7:27 am

    If the Eunuchs as you prefer to call them would live their own life and stop trying to promote their sexual perversion on the rest of society they wouldn’t get the rejection they get. I never had a issue with the gays until they became millitant and started demanding Harvey Milk gay day in CA schools. The homosexual movement is much more sinister than the simplicity of your article suggests. I don’t dislike the average gay but the movement/lifestyle they promote is not the life that God has planned for us in the Bible.

    • Shannon Ivey on April 3, 2011 at 7:36 am

      What’s sinister about being gay? Wanting to have insurance, file taxes, live in peace, raise a family? I think the aggression that you’re seeing from the gay community right now is a direct result of feeling like a second-class citizen. Do you feel they are somehow beneath the traditional family? When you say “what God has planned for us” – are homosexuals included in the “us”?

      • Mary on April 4, 2011 at 6:24 pm

        Shannon, you selectively ignore the fact that there are legal options for all those things, from insurance, to children, property, etc.. many employers provide insurance and other benefits to homosexual partners. You can’t hang your hat, use these things as an excuse to demand that Christian’s and the churches be forced to change their beliefs to affirm your feelings or beliefs.. in fact, it’s hypocritical for you to do so. You’d decry and scream foul if Christians demanded you conform to their beliefs, and you know it full well. Our rights and freedoms require reciprocity, of respect, and recognition of the rights of others.

        Your demands smack of a desire to sublimate Christians, and that smacks of a desire to harm and oppress, which doesn’t speak well of your intent or your emotional stability for that matter. Our constitution not only protects us from a state imposed religion, but also protects religion from the state, and those corrupt individuals able to influence the state. You are denied the ability to demand that Christians be reduced to second class status, and in all candor, it’s plainly apparent that is what is your intent.

        Christianity isn’t easily reduced to a Trojan horse to destroy the faith from within. True Christians are too smart to be duped by such tactics, as your actions speak for themselves. God has made clear his plans for us, and while God loves homosexuals, he doesn’t love or condone your sin when you are actively or passively engaging in homosexual acts. I’ll pray for you.

        • Shannon Ivey on April 4, 2011 at 7:28 pm

          Please do – pray for me, Mary – and while you’re at it throw one in for all of the rest of the folks riding around on that Trojan horse – I hear they’re dangerous.

  11. Billy Dean on April 4, 2011 at 7:55 am

    Jesus teaches us not to hate, but to love everyone. We as Christians, as I believe we can’t ever hurt anyone, even verbally. But when you start changing the meaning of words. Husband, wife, and marriage, I have a problem with that. Gays can’t have exactly a traditional family life, again I don’t care what they do, they can have a wonderful family life but it can’t be a traditional family life. You can’t change the basic biological functions of the human body. Changing the meaning of words can’t fix that. Its basic human nature to put people down and hurt people, as Christians we all try on a daily basis not to do that. It’s a constant battle to love everyone. That’s why it’s not easy trying to follow gods path he has set for us. We have to all remember its a personal path and to others it may seem wrong. Only God can know and we will all be judged in the end buy him.

  12. Bruce Carson on April 4, 2011 at 11:03 am

    Well, this one is a hot topic and may go on for a while on this board.
    I’m going to chime in on this one as I live near Palm Springs and I know a lot of gay men and women.
    Since moving here seven years ago my opinion or at least my understanding of Gays has changed a bit…both for the good and the bad I’m afraid.
    First off…Marriage. This term is used for a man and woman and has been that way for a very long time. I feel that using it or changing it to be used for Gay relationships is not the answer. Men and women have accepted this term and regardless of who came up with it or who did not, the term is known as a joining of a man and a woman.
    Changing the definition of this is out of the question from my perspective. If Gays are proud of their sexual preference as they say they are they should demand their own term for their joining. Why would they want to adopt an already established label that by definition means something totally different from their situation or union?
    I don’t have a problem with Gay people having their own rights and being joined legally. That what marriage is to a man and woman so they should have their own iconic term for the act of joining and committing. But to want to take over or change the meaning of an already established practice might lead one think they just want to smear this in the faces of heterosexual couples and make you like it.
    Plus as far as the discrimination thing goes…there will always be some level of that in every arena. Not just Gay and Straight…not just Christian and non-Christian. This is just the law of averages doing what it does.
    I see Gays out here that attack the church’s with signs and websites and through other means and I personally think a great deal of it may be retaliation but some of it is non provoked as well. I mean, isn’t that how disagreements work?
    Now I will end with this…but I could say a lot more on this subject.
    Since I moved here I have become convinced that Gay people are just like that. They aren’t out to hurt people or destroy anything and they are not trying to go against the grain to make anyone mad. They really love each other and are not attracted to the opposite sex. This is the way they are wired and it’s real. A sin in my book is doing something that you know is wrong. But to a Gay person loving the same sex feels totally right. The only wrong part of it is the attitude of the people that are not gay…in many cases…the churches.
    Churches get caught every day with phony faith healings and misusing tithing money but that’s ok I guess.
    I say let the Gays be gay and let them live in peace and when judgment day comes…God will sort us all out…won’t he!

    • Shannon Ivey on April 4, 2011 at 8:13 pm

      He will indeed. Thanks so much for your thoughts!

  13. Cathy on April 4, 2011 at 8:18 pm

    God offers one gift for all people. That is eternal life through the blood of His son Jesus Christ. If one chooses to reject that gift, God expects nothing else. That person is free to live life as he/she chooses with no obligation of obedience to God. The only obligation is to the laws of man or facing the consequences of breaking them. However, if a person chooses to accept the gift of salvation and accepts Christ as personal savior, then one must confess his/her sins,repent of those sins, profess Christ to be the crucified and risen Son of God and choose to be obedient to Him. Regardless of what the carnal nature desires, we are to die to that fleshly nature and turn from sin and live as Christ-like as possible. We will not be perfect, we will fail. But we have to strive to live lives that bring glory and honor to God. If I am homosexual, I have to avoid being involved in a sexual relationship, because God’s word does not condone marriage between members of the same sex. If I am heterosexual, I have to avoid being involved in a sexual relationship unless married to the person. If a gay or lesbian person does not profess to be a Christian they can choose to live their lives anyway they please, civil unions should be an option. If they profess to be Christians, they should legally have the option of civil unions. Spiritually, it will not change God’s word or God’s plan for marriage.

    • Shannon Ivey on April 4, 2011 at 8:29 pm

      This is all rhetoric that we’ve heard before. I’ve presented you with an alternative logic and backed it with historical context as well as scripture – what say you?

      • Shannon Ivey on April 4, 2011 at 8:42 pm

        One more question – I don’t think God gives up on his children because of rejection. Would you give up on your child?

        • Cathy on April 4, 2011 at 9:24 pm

          He gives us the choice. If we choose not to choose Jesus, we choose life without God. Eternity in hell. There are only two options. Life with God or life without Him. His is a loving God, but He is a Just God. He is righteous and He means what He says. He does’t want any to perish, but the call is ours.
          As far as me giving upon my child no, but I am a human. God let His suffer and die for me and you. I wouldn’t do that would you?

  14. jcourt on April 4, 2011 at 8:44 pm

    1) marriage is NOT about the children – it was originally about the passing on and conferring of property – and women were part of that property.
    2) there is nothing any straight couple has to sign saying they’ll have children when they get married
    3) she talks about having children “naturally” – what about ALL those straight couples who are infertile and have to use surrogates or IVF? With her childish logic, they should not be allowed to get married.
    4) what about couple who do NOT want kids? I know many of those – i guess they shouldn’t be allowed to marry?
    5) what about couples who are too old (esp women) to have kids? I guess Mary wouldn’t allow any post-menopausal women to get married.
    Marriage has NOTHING to do with kids.

    Mary, and everyone else, I don’t give a shit what you believe or what your religion is, YOU live YOUR life the way YOU choose and don’t try to force everyone to live by your beliefs. Do you want other people to stick their nose in your life and tell you how to live? Would you like that?
    And civil marriage has NOTHING to do with religion. Atheists get married, many people get married by a justice of the piece and never step foot in a church. Two strangers who meet in Vegas, a man and woman, can JUST meet, not know each other, walk into any Elvis chapel and BAM, they’re married with an instant windfall of rights and protections, etc. But a gay couple who’ve been together for 40 years – somehow their relationship isn’t worthy? How can anyone think that anything is right about that?

    Civil unions are only available in a few states. Please don’t lie and say civil unions are readily available.

    And Mary this comment you made “Whereas what homosexual activists are demanding, is imposing that churches be forced to recognize homosexuals as being married.” is an outright, unfounded lie. Please cite some credible sources where this is happening. This is a LIE and totally untrue. There is no movement to force churches to marry people they don’t want to. No church NOW has to marry anyone they don’t want to. Don’t spout ignorance.

    To reiterate – i don’t give a shit what religion you believe in – do you people understand the idea of living your life the way you choose and NOT tell other people how to live? Don’t like gay marriage, don’t have one.

  15. Patty on April 4, 2011 at 9:11 pm

    First of all, Mary, ‘irregardless’ is not a word. The word you are looking for is ‘regardless’.
    Most importantly, thank you Shannon. Thank you for helping me change my opinion of Christians in general. You have helped me see that critical thinking and religion can live in harmony. You have been a catalyst for me to not view all Christians as judgmental and hateful towards the GLBT community, and that in itself promotes more peace between everyone. Thank you for your opinion and helping me feel some kind of hope for humankind as a whole.

    • Shannon Ivey on April 5, 2011 at 4:41 am

      :o) Yeah, Patty – we’re not all hateful!

      • Misty on April 7, 2011 at 12:32 pm

        Nope…we sure aren’t! Even those of us who believe homosexuality is a sin against God. That’s right. I can say I love you regardless of your sexual choices…but I will not say homosexuality is okay w/ God! See I’m not hateful either!

  16. Shanna on April 4, 2011 at 11:01 pm

    Great article Shannon. Lots of neat information. My brother thought me to never accept someone’s word as fact ;-) so I’ll have to do my own research on this, but I always find your articles to be accurate. 

    Its interesting to me to think that not so long ago people used the bible to justify slavery. We see this as heinous and disgusting now but it was done.

    Leviticus 25:44 
    “Your male and female slaves are to come from the nations around you; from them you may buy slaves.”

    1 Peter 2:18 
    “Slaves, submit yourselves to your masters with all respect, not only to those who are good and considerate, but also to those who are harsh.”

    Col 3:22 
    “Slaves, obey your earthly masters in everything; and do it, not only when their eye is on you and to win their favor, but with sincerity of heart and reverence for the Lord.”

    The bible is also referenced as a reason why women should not vote or have any thought processes outside of their husbands. I’m sure I don’t need to provide reference but I will. 

    1 Corinthians 14:34-36
    Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience as also saith the law. And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the church.

    1 Timothy 2:11-15
    Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection. But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence. For Adam was first formed, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression. Notwithstanding she shall be saved in childbearing.

    And I actually know people who think using an epidural or having a c-section is a sin because it “takes the pain out of childbirth” 

    Genesis 3:16
    Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee.

    Let me temper these statements by telling everyone who does not know me know that I am a Christian and do believe in the Bible. The point I’m trying to make is that the Bible has been thrown down on what is obviously the wrong side of the debate time and again. Most of the people I know who so vigorously denounce homosexuality also have strong convictions as to why the above versus can be ignored. Some people say only the New Testament counts as it constitutes the new covenant after Christ’s death but notice most of these versus are New Testament. Some say they are a result of the culture and not God’s actual dictates. Couldn’t you then say this about versus that denounce homosexuality? Honestly I’m not entirely sure how I feel about the status of homosexuality as a sin as I prefer to do my own research, reading, and praying before I come to a conclusion on topics such as these, but here is what I know:
    - Jesus loves the sinners. He had dinner and un-judgmentally conversed with the sinners. 
    - Only God can judge a sinner. No one needs to have their sins pointed out by someone who simply has a different set of sins. I’m a sinner… I get it… So are you. The nature of sin is that it’s wrong. If a person is truly a Christian and is doing something wrong God will convict them. It’s not your job. Let him handle it. 
    - Ultimately God called us to love. See 1 Corinthians 13:4-13 for instructions should you need a refresher. 
    - Some people are born homosexual. Just as science proved years ago that women are no less intelligent then men it has proven that some are born homosexual. Accept it, reconcile it, or deny it but it’s true.
    - As the sentiments of the past and the verses above prove, often wrong and un-Godly things can be backed up biblically if we take scripture out of context and over scrutinize it. 
    - Oppressed or mistreated sub-groups often fight back and win. 
    - Every homosexual person I know (and I mean EVERY) has had a negative and often horrible experience with a Christian, and frankly I’m pissed about it. It takes alot to get them to lower their guard and realize not all Christians are like that and I’m not like that. I don’t blame them. I blame the Christian from their past who should have known better. God’s ultimate commandment to us it to love. Not beat someone with “the bat of truth” just so we know that they know that we think they are a sinner. These people may have done irrevocable damage. My only solace is that they will answer for it. One day God will ask them  ”how come when I sent this person to you to show them the love and compassion that only Christ can give you only showed judgement and distain?”.   

    As I said I haven’t completely formed my opinion but I can tell you this. Whatever my conviction ends up being it will not change the way I treat anyone simply because they happen to have a different sexual preference. 

    Please spare me the Christian rhetoric as I’ve herd it, believe me, and don’t need to be reminded. I welcome and condone original thoughts and non-hostile criticism. 

    • Indy on April 5, 2011 at 6:41 am

      Shanna,
      Thanks for the info. I had no idea about the slaves/wives stuff. I still don’t know about the gay bit, though. I’m pretty sure we’re supposed to respect and love all… including homosexuals. But about the “love the sinner, hate the sin” bit… I’m confused. I just don’t know what to believe. I will say, similar to what Mary stated, that sometimes homosexuals who try to throw it in my face and demand special treatment (i.e. gay day) really gets to me. I don’t go around with a shirt that says “Hetero ir Bettero.”

      Anyways, I don’t guess I really have a point here, but thanks for the info none-the-less.

      • Shanna on April 5, 2011 at 8:09 am

        No but your lifestyle isn’t oppressed. I agree with Shannon alot of this is because they are a persecuted society. I don’t agree with the hostility and the throwing it in your face but if this was the early 1900′s during the women’s rights movement I definitely would have been on a picket line. It takes alot to affect change. Hopefully soon they will get what they are asking for (which isn’t special treatment just equal treatment) and maybe we will get to see who those people on the picket line really are.

        • Indy on April 5, 2011 at 9:10 am

          But Shanna,
          I didn’t say ALL homosexuals annoy me. I said “homosexuals who try to throw it in my face and demand special treatment”.

          • Patty on April 5, 2011 at 12:17 pm

            I suppose I personally can’t argue with your statement. Not all humans annoy me, just those who think that fighting for equal rights and pushing through for a minority population means ‘throwing it in their face’.
            Awareness comes from putting your voice out there, education comes from speaking out. You can’t silently change a nation.

        • Misty on April 7, 2011 at 12:37 pm

          We “ALL” already have equal rights! Anything above and beyond that would be considered “Special Rights!
          We “ALL” already have the right to marry. There’s no denying that. Anyone and Everyone has that same right….

  17. Shanna on April 4, 2011 at 11:16 pm

    Also whether or not homosexuality is moral or a sin has nothing to do with the rights of homosexuals. This country established a long time ago that separate is inherently not equal. Therefore we can conclude that giving a “homosexual union” a separate title other then marriage is demeaning and not in line with the constitutional right of equality. Whatever marriage was does not really matter. What it is now is a legal union of two people. If you put religious implications on it that’s your choice but the right to sign a marriage license and file it with the government should be granted to all people.

  18. Cathy on April 5, 2011 at 11:19 am

    Shanna I have to ask the question, is sex outside of marriage, regardless of whether it is same sex or opposites, permitted by God for Christians? I know He forgives it, but if it is habitual and a chosen lifestyle, is it any different than any other sin that is not repented of such as continuous stealing, or murdering or anything else? Why do we gloss over the sins our flesh wants even as Christians and say it is the way things are in todays world. Sin is sin in God’s eyes just as it was when He created it. Shannon said in an earlier reply that we would not allow gays to get married. That is not entirely true. There are states that allow gays to be married. If a gay couple wants to be married legally and in a church they can go to the nearest state that allows it.

  19. Bruce Carson on April 5, 2011 at 4:45 pm

    Work is slow and I own the company so I’m going to chime in once again.
    I am basically going to respond to the posts above with a general post of my own.
    There was some talk above about annoying gays that bother people and talk about them being in your face with their sexual preference.
    Well, as I stated earlier I live near Palm Springs and walk among them daily. I have friends that are gay and are gay couples. I have found most of them to be pleasant individuals that aren’t out to hurt anyone and just want to be left alone as far as their sexuality goes.
    But yes, there is another side to it. And it is rather large. The gays who want to shove their sexual choice in anyone’s face that will stand there long enough to be annoyed by it.
    Here is an example first hand. I was given front row seats by Anthony Robbins to a David Copperfield Magic show out here near Palm Springs a few years back. I took my wife and two daughters. Sitting right next to us was the Mayor of Palm Springs who at the time was a gay man. I feel he is a good example as he was sitting the Mayor. He was with a man that I soon would find out was his partner and another gay couple. He proceeded to kiss, and fondle the crotch of the man he was with right in front of my then twelve year old daughter. I won’t describe the rest of his actions but they were far worse than that.
    He looked over at my daughter and proceeded to do something with his partner that was far too classless to post here but it prompted me to move my daughter to the other end of our group and shield her from his actions. They all started acting the same way on his lead so I went to the usher and pointed it out. He was paralyzed not knowing if he should approach the Mayor or not. The show started at that moment and attention turned to the stage so I let it go.
    I know some of you are saying or at least thinking that this is just the actions of four men and not an example of the entire life style and I’ll give you that …but, This goes on all over Palm Springs where gay couples act very, and I mean very inappropriately in public and defy anyone to say anything so they can yell “Homophobe” at the top of their lungs.
    The gym in Palm Springs had to close the showers and board them off because they could not stop the gay sex in the showers as the gays threatened to sue over being singled out. The answer was to close the showers for everyone…fair?
    Yes this type of behavior is annoying. I don’t act this way with my wife so they should not act that way with their partners either. It’s just plain classless.
    Having said this…I still think that God’s word said that there are no big or little sins…only sin.
    So if this is a sin there could be an argument made that it’s no larger or smaller than say stealing a whatever.
    But I do agree that there are a lot of Gays that are not and will never be satisfied with being left alone and want much more.
    In closing I will leave you all with this which might shed some light on the fears of letting gays be married.
    Some time back I shot on video a meeting of gays in Palm Springs and the topic was of course…gay marriage.
    There were a lot of people there and beings I was not sworn to secrecy by the client I’ll tell you the basis of the meeting.
    By law in the state of California Gay marriage is not recognized. But according the attorneys that were there if it were they would have a right to equal everything in California.
    By this I mean they could sue for equal exposure and equal advertisement. In other words when you walk through the gates of Disneyland and there is a poster of a family storming into the park smiling there has to be a poster of gays the same size doing the same thing…by law!
    The only reason it doesn’t have to be there now is the fact that gay marriage is not recognized in California.
    If it were, they would have and would fight for the right to make this equal throughout. They cheered and celebrated the thought….quite loudly.
    Bridal shops would have to advertise gay marriage and basically everything would have to be equal throughout the state.
    And then the school books were to be their next target to teach gay in school and equally.
    This would be a hard pill for most Christian to swallow but they would be required to…so there you go.

    • ellen on April 7, 2011 at 11:45 am

      Bruce:

      Just wanted to point out a few inconsistencies with your post.

      The disclaimer in the beginning of your email,
      “I have friends that are gay and are gay couples. I have found most of them to be pleasant individuals that aren’t out to hurt anyone and just want to be left alone as far as their sexuality goes [sic],” is completely negated by the example of a negative encounter you had with a few homosexuals and then a blatant stereotype that blankets all gays and lesbians as exhibitionists who are out to “throw it in your face.” Make up your mind. Either you are a hypocrite or you aren’t. Merely because you have had a personal encounter with a particular cross-section of a minority doesn’t mean that all members of the minority share those beliefs, values, or doctrines. Just as Shannon is so powerfully proving in her posts, not all Christians are bigoted, mean-spirited, out to condemn-to-hell, hypocrites, you might also want to take a step back and re-examine why you are so insistent to make a point that many gays and lesbians want to “throw their lives in your face.”

      Additionally your claims in regards as to what will ensue once same sex marriage is legalized in California are not only speculations, but also the exact fear-mongering scare tactics that were used in the proposition 8 campaign to distract from what the main agenda of the proponents was, which was to eliminate the rights of same sex couples for equal protections under the law.

      What are you so afraid of? That gays and lesbians are going to take over the world? It’s impossible. They are a minority. They only represent 10% of the population and are fighting for equal protections. Live your own life and stop meddling in other peoples’ lives.

      There are activists in every single group in the world – from religion to race to sex. Do feminists represent all women’s views? Did Malcom X represent all the views of every single African American? Did Hitler represent the viewpoints of all Germans? Just because there are activists it doesn’t their views represent the views of an entire population OR a minority.

      • Bruce Carson on April 7, 2011 at 12:08 pm

        You don’t read very well…do you?
        I said I have friends that are gay and are gay couples and went on to describe them.
        This is not an opinion, this is my personal experience having known them for some time.
        Why do you think it negates a true story that I experienced with Gays that are “NOT” friends of mine that acted in a negative manner?
        I merely pointed out two truths based on personal experience. You act like I’m supposed to take one side in the issue.
        And once again,
        You hopped all over the part about the results of same sex marriage and this too is a personal experience.
        The people that spoke at this event were attorneys and this is what they said…not me! But there was a large packed house of Gays that not only agreed but celebrated…fact. This is Palm Springs…remember.
        So where do you get fear out of this?
        You make no sense to me at all….
        I told you I live near Palm Springs…If I for some odd reason had fear of these things why would I live near one of the Gay Capitals of the Country?
        I can live where ever I want.

        Make some sense and don’t tell me I have to take one side of the argument or the other…
        I was stating possibilities of why some are so touchy about the issue…I don’t take a hard stance on it..
        As I said before…God will sort us out in the end. Until then..I’m not Judge or Jury.

        • Misty on April 7, 2011 at 12:49 pm

          Good for you Bruce….I’m so glad you chose to stand up for youself there. After I read the reply to your statement I couldn’t believe how oblivious Ellen’s comments were…and how she just outright attacked you….for absolutely no reason!

    • Amy on April 7, 2011 at 12:33 pm

      Bruce,

      The other day I was in a movie theater with my mother and there were a few Japanese people sitting next to us.

      During the movie they started being rude, talking, throwing popcorn, etc. Then they started saying vulgar comments and dancing provocatively in front of my mother.

      I wasn’t that surprised, because, well, they were Japanese. And you know all Japanese people love to throw their behavior in your face. This example proves why Japanese people should not be allowed to go to the movies.

      If we start allowing all Japanese people in the theaters America’s favorite past time will be ruined and the film industry will collapse.

      *Listen to yourself Bruce. Your argument is just as absurd.

      • Bruce Carson on April 7, 2011 at 4:47 pm

        And now you say “Listen to yourself Bruce. Your argument is just as absurd”

        Argument? where? I just stated facts of actual things that happened. I showed both sides of the issue. And ended by saying God needs to decide…
        Argument?

        And not that it matters but you are comparing The Mayor of the city to some Japanese people you made up in your mind…I was only giving an example for one argument after showing the other side and thought he’d be a good example as it was witnessed by me and not hear say or a ridiculous hypothetical like yours.

        Hmmmmmm…..

  20. richard stoll on April 6, 2011 at 10:28 am

    While Paul and the Old Testament commented on homosexuality as a sin, Christ never did. It is mentioned nowhere in the Gospels – Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. Paul also referenced homosexuality more in the context of one consumed by lust and fleshly desires and included other sexual sins. Christ also never said love the sinner and hate the sin. Christ however did say, before you point out the speck in your neighbor’s eye, take the plank out of your own eye first. Christ also said the greatest commandments are that we should love God with all our heart and all our soul and with all our mind and the second is like unto it, love your neighbor as yourself; and it is on these two commandments that the Law and the prophets are based. If Christians look in the Old Testament and the Law from which we were freed by Christ’s blood, they will find laws equally condemning that Christians tend to overlook. They will also find that many of the Old Testament heros – David most notably – committed sin worthy of death under the Law. David committed adultery and murder, yet David was considered a man after God’s own heart! If you also look in Christ’s geneology, you will find Rehab the prostitute. I will not debate whether homosexuality is a sin or not. All I know is that although Christ’s blood has made me pure in God’s eyes, I am still a sinner with a sinful nature and I have been given the Holy Spirit to convict me and the Bible to guide me. So how can I condemn anyone or hate anyone else’s sin when my sins I committ every day would keep me from God but for Christ’s blood? I cannot do it when I am commanded to love my neighbor, and that also means my neighbor who is gay, black, Muslim, Jewish, white, liberal, conservative or whatever. Christ’s gift and God’ love is for everyone regardless of their sexual orientation. God looks at the heart and those with a heart for God and his or her neighbor are those he wants in heaven with Him.

  21. Rubbermaid on April 7, 2011 at 12:27 am

    It’s always amazing once justice finally starts to succeed over oppression, how the painful, fear-driven, mortal backlash often seems to gain momentum and turn hateful. Unfortunately this backlash often does happen in the name of religion and even more sadly under the false pretenses of the teachings of Christ.

    Here’s the thing about same sex marriage: it’s inevitable. Same sex couples will eventually be afforded the same legal recognitions that heterosexual couples are afforded when they file their marriage certificate and are finally recognized by their state and our great country. When a couple gets married in a church, or mosque, or temple or any other religious sanctuary, they still have to file for the piece of paper that proclaims that they are LEGALLY MARRIED in their state and will receive all of the STATE and FEDERAL benefits that they, as an American citizen, are entitled to once enjoined in matrimony. Notice I didn’t say holy matrimony. That can be left to the religious institution that would so choose to recognize the marriage as deeming worthy of religious recognition (and no, the agenda is absolutely NOT to enforce ANY religious institution to recognize same sex marriages within their religion). That’s it, folks. Same sex couples are fighting for the right to receive the same equal recognition and protections under their state and their country. Then why not just get contracts drawn up, you say? Seriously? Do you realize there are 1,138 federal protections granted to legally married couples? So same sex couples would need to go with the added expense of hiring a lawyer to draw up contracts that lay out the same exact protections that are in a state/federal recognized marriages because certain people are uncomfortable with using the same word, and because they believe in their own interpretation of their religion that homosexuality is a sin? For goodness sakes just let same sex couples live their lives in peace and privacy and be protected for and by the one they love and choose to spend the rest of their life with. Same sex couples don’t get all the rights without the word. It’s as simple as that. In our country, the word marriage in the eyes of the federal and state LAW has ONLY to do with granting legal protections. If you believe that same sex couples shouldn’t be allowed to marry because your interpretation of the Bible is that ALL marriages are holy, then why should Atheists or Buddhists or Hindus or Jews or ANY OTHER party other than Christians be allowed to receive a marriage license? You see, you are imposing your own religious beliefs on non-religious protections. Say what you will about homosexuality in general. You are entitled to your opinion and we all have the constitutional right to practice and live by the religion of our choice. We are protected by the 1st Amendment of the United States Constitution to have the freedom to practice our CHOSEN religion. But you are NOT entitled to eliminate rights of tax paying American citizens just because they happen to be gay or lesbian and want to be protected under the law with the person whom they want to love, honor, cherish, watch tv, go grocery shopping, buy a house, bury their parents, celebrate anniversaries, spend holidays, get pets, go to dinner, go to movies, travel, laugh, cry, sleep, and yes, even go to church with.

    You think it’s a sin? Fine. Go for it. Judge away.

    At the end of the day you are absolutely entitled to your opinion. You are free to believe whatever you would like to believe. However you interpret the Bible is your absolute prerogative. You can teach, and scream, and picket, and bully people on message boards, and condemn people to hell – all in the name of your own religion, if you’d like. But you know what? The same laws that protect you to do so are the same ones that are going to eventually protect ALL law-abiding citizens to marry the person they love.

    Kudos to you Shannon, for offering another take on how homosexuality could be interpreted in the Bible and most importantly, among many other brave souls in this comments section, for reminding us all that above all else, Christ taught us to love. Love your brother. Love your sister. Love your neighbor. Even when they’re hard to love. Even when you think they are doing something that you interpret as a sin. Even the bullies. Even the bigots. Even those whom you think are dead wrong in their opinion or approach to this topic. Love them anyway. And by the way. Love yourself, too. It will make your life so much easier.

    • Bruce Carson on April 7, 2011 at 12:19 pm

      Your response is both reasonable and intelligent…thank you!
      Judging is the first step in the direction of hate and hate is like swallowing poison and expecting it to kill the other guy….

  22. Bruce Carson on April 7, 2011 at 1:13 pm

    Let me say this to all on this board. I maybe I didn’t really take a side in the debate here and the reason is because I’m not qualified to judge anyone for any reason and the Bible says not to.
    But…having said that let me say this about religion and so called religious people.
    I feel religious beliefs are a personal issue. Most that are religious hold their faith close to their heart. I was brought up in a Christian home and became a born again at an early age.
    Since then I have seen and learned much about religions and the people who profess within them.
    To clarify I will speak of my own chosen religion. I was taught to not judge people and that God is the only one who can or should. This makes sense to me…especially the part where I don’t do it!
    However, religion is like most things man got his hands on along the way. The more he fixes it the worse it gets.
    After many years of following in the path of a born again Christian I have had to pause and catch my breath. I first looked behind me to see where I had been and then dared to look forward to see where I was going. If looking back didn’t confuse me then looking forward certainly did.
    Man has changed religion to fit his personal needs and desires like he has most everything else.
    If you look at all religions I would venture to say that one common denominator would probably be that you are not supposed to kill people…makes sense…not too much to ask…right?
    Yet, more people die in wars based on religion than any other dispute now days. How could this happen when we are all so “Religious”?
    Well, I think it’s because we as human beings have taken the words of our own religions and retranslated them into whatever meets our current needs.
    Sometimes it takes the innocence of a child to wake an adult up to these facts. Such was the case with me. I used to give a substantial amount of money to the 700 club every month and liked the teachings of Pat Robertson. Until one day he went on a tangent about the Gaza strip. He said on the air that “We need to wipe them out militarily and take back the land”. My then 12 year old daughter looked at me and said “Does he mean kill them daddy?…I thought it was wrong to kill”
    I thought to myself…she’s right and he’s wrong. In the Christian religion God said “Thou shalt not Kill”. But was I supposed to tell her “But if you put on a uniform you can stack them up like cord wood?” And was I supposed to go on and tell her that this applies anywhere in the entire world if someone gets in your way?
    Yes honey God wrote the Ten Commandments and we fixed them for him was not an option either.
    Also, the radical Muslims have taken their religion and started molding it into a more deadly and hateful set of beliefs of their own. They are just like us on that account and it doesn’t stop there.
    Answer me this. If God is all mighty and did the things the Bible said he did then why when he himself wiped out entire cities and at one point the entire world by water do I have to kill people for him?
    If God wanted them to be dead…they would be dead. But like the Muslims we say that we killed all these people for God when in reality God didn’t kill any of them or tell us to kill them…we killed them. It was not for God that you did it…it was for your own desire to kill.
    So there is a small take on what I think happened along the way with people taking things into their own hands and speaking for God or saying they do.
    God said “Vengeance is mine” so we went out and killed everyone in sight… what’s wrong with this picture.
    Even if he Bible speaks negatively about Gays and acts of gay it would still be God’s choice on how to deal with it….not ours.
    The Gays don’t question my income tax returns or my views on family…why should I try to use the Bible as an excuse to question theirs?

    • A Loving Neighbor on April 19, 2011 at 10:17 am

      Bruce / Mr. Carson:

      This is to address your statements* (quoted at the end of my post) to the effect that Christianity and probably all religions hold that one shall not kill. To my understanding, the Hebrew from the Ten Commandments is best translated as thou shall not murder, and though one (or more) Christian-issued versions used a translation of “thou shall not kill,” other versions use “… murder.”

      For example, here’s the introduction to one of numerous entries I found by googling “kill versus murder commandment” without the quotation marks.

      ( Beginning of excerpt of
      http://www.biblestudy.org/question/what-does-thou-shall-not-kill-mean.html )

      Q. I am studying the Ten Commandments. Please explain the Sixth Commandment that says “thou shalt not kill.” (Exodus 20:13)

      A. The commandment “thou shalt not kill” (found in the KJV Bible translation of Exodus 20:13), is better understood in the New King James Version Bible which states:

      “You shall not murder.” (Exodus 20:13, NKJV throughout)

      Most modern translations of the Bible rendered it this way.

      (End of excerpt)

      Wikipedia has an extensive discussion; I’ve not attempted to evaluate its accuracy. The link is http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/You_shall_not_kill (thus using the phrase “you shall not kill,”), but the title is “You shall not murder.”

      I trust you’ll agree that I’m not arguing that all killing is therefore sanctioned by Judaism or by parts of Christianity. Instead, I simply am noting that not all killing is prohibited.

      Just to address one area, killing in war:

      Though civil disobedience arguably has been successful in numerous circumstances, civil disobedience would have resulted in far greater tragedy had it rather than killing been utilized in fighting Hitler.

      This thread / web page is not about murder vs killing, and therefore I’ve not tried to cover all aspects of the topic; instead, I simply wanted to address your statements, quoted below.

      ————–

      * You wrote:

      “In the Christian religion God said “Thou shalt not Kill”.”

      and

      “If you look at all religions I would venture to say that one common denominator would probably be that you are not supposed to kill people…makes sense…not too much to ask…right?”

  23. [...] LINK TO:  FOR THE LOVE OF GAY:  PART 1 [...]

  24. [...] Part 3” Please read first the excellent essays, the comments are essential, proffered by Part 1 and [...]

  25. [...] wrote her article in two parts: The First Part is called “For the Love of Gay” and gives an in-depth look at how Christianity (loosely [...]

  26. [...] to the moronic doctrine of Westboro Baptist Church, God is not punishing America because of homosexuality and would NEVER delight in the suffering caused from the loss of a [...]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Feature

Epilog C An Immoral Jihad

“Moral nihilists assert that morality does not inherently exist, and that any established moral values are abstractly contrived. Nihilism can also take epistemological or...

Obama’s Stunning Snub

By Selena Zito GETTYSBURG – He almost was not asked to speak. In October 1863, President Abraham Lincoln received the same plain envelope that...