Sunday, January 18, 2015

Gay Christian Inclusion for Smart people

My hope is that this post is instructive. I do not wish to offend anyone. "Smart" people, as defined here, are those that put compassion ahead of cherry picking, read the bible in context, want all to be included in the church, and are guided by the Spirit in understanding the very simple words below.

Homosexual ORIENTATION was not recognized until 1892.
Smart people realize that the "homosexual behaviors" listed in the 
bible therefore existed through straight men (almost entirely) who let their lust wander into very dark areas. 

This was the time of Caligula and Nero.

Smart people realize all sexual relations then were hierarchical.
They did not have the frame of reference of today
where gay and straight relationships are of relative equals.

You can see a picture above of a single heterosexual man having relations with a boy. Caligula had young boys castrated for his pleasure. This way they would always remain "young." This next part is really gross... so you may want to skip to the next picture. Castration occurred by mashing the testicles and cutting the vas deferens (tiny canal). Sex with boys was called pederasty (current day pedophilia).

The heterosexual men in the first century also had sex with prostitutes just like todays "straight" men. Nothing has changed here. 

Heterosexual men also had relations with slaves - both male and female. It is important to note that to be the submissive partner was to be seen as a woman who was considered weak at the time. This is why men in battle would rape the conquered men. It was to humiliate them. It was about power.

The "GLBT" in the picture stands for Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender. Normally it is written as LGBT. The "reparative therapy" programs (to change sexual orientation) are all but dead. In my home state of pennsylvania there is not a single outreach. The leading ministry of this type - Exodus International - has made a mass apology and claims a zero per cent success rate. Reparative therapy is so destructive it is being banned in some states.

This is a good thing. LGBT's have their gender identity "stamped at birth." It is fixed. If you don't believe me... ask the next five people you bump into who are gay. This is why smart gay people wonder why they are told to "repent" when they were given an unchangeable circumstance. 

No other sin is like this. However, it makes sense as "sin" if the Bible is read properly in context. It is a sin for heterosexual people to perform gay acts because this is not their given orientation. It is a changeable circumstance. 

SIN = Heterosexuals who can't control their lust and perform homosexual acts previously mentioned.

NO SIN = Gay orientation. The Bible is silent here. It is also silent of those of an LGBT orientation expressing their sexuality. These are the facts.

Do you know what smart people see as a contradiction?

The sin of greed can lead to the sin of stealing. (both the thought and the act are sins)
The sin of anger can lead to the sin of murder. (both the thought and the act are sins)
A gay orientation is not a sin but expressing it is a sin (sex). (the thought is OK but the logical act is not). 

A smart person can see this makes no sense at all. It represents the "manufactured rules" of church leaders who misuse the "gift" of celibacy in a mandated and punitive manner. No smart and clear thinking LGBT is going to allow some hackneyed man-made rule to govern their lives. Crazy.

The chart above is amazing. A smart person would not try to formulate a behavioral handbook from this spaghetti of contradictions. 

A smart person would focus on the principles of Jesus who said the two greatest commands are:
1) Love God
2) Love your neighbor as yourself

Mom knows best: One "mother bear" of a gay child exclaimed, "God made my son the way he is. If you don't like it then blame God. I am not destroying my child through the nonsense of reparative therapy. If my church kicks us out - they will have to say it my face!" (the child is still happily ensconced in the church run by a compassionate and smart pastor).

Consider what Pope Francis said:  "If they (gays) accept the Lord and have goodwill, who am I to judge them?"

Or what mega-church East Lake (Seattle) Minister Ryan Meeks said:  “I refuse to go to a church where my friends who are gay are excluded from Communion or a marriage covenant or the beauty of Christian community. It is a move of integrity for me—the message of Jesus was a message of wide inclusivity.”

CRITICS: Some critics claim that some parents of gays do their Bible study in a biased way when they find out their child is gay. This is unfair and inaccurate. The knee-jerk response is almost always to claim: "We need to fix him/her. Where can we get counseling?" It is at this point that research about reparative therapy is done and it is found that the success rate is about 0 per cent. 

Here people read further and realize that the anti-gay verses in the Bible are routinely taken out of context... while the verses subjugating women and condoning slavery ARE put in context and given new modern meaning as a result. Did you know the Bible never speaks against polygamy? But this too is given new modern meaning. 

People learn that in regards to LGBT's they have never been told the truth in the Bible. Just surface meanings with no context. Why the harsh treatment towards gays? A simple answer: bigotry. People have a desire to scapegoat. Being gay is "icky" and gays have never defended themselves well - until now. 

HYPOCRITES    I believe it is wonderful that Mary Cheney (daughter of Dick Cheney) married her love, Heather Poe, and that they are happy. Mary Cheney also had two children through an arrangement. I agree with Mary Cheney that same sex couplses can parent as well as other couples. Love is love... and you can't "catch" gayness. 

The hypocricy, of course, is from the non-affirming crowd who gave the entire family a free pass because Dick Cheney is "one of them." I don't want anyone to attack their family... I am calling for people to affirm (or saying nothing would be a start) all who judge others by their orientation.

What I hope the non-affirming individuals cull from this experience is that these matters are always intensely personal for those going through them. Christ's light would be brightened if they showed the same compassion and space to all people and not just those who are politically connected in the "right way."

When you know someone who is gay, or know of someone whose is gay (say a celebrity), a common response is to do research to find out more. Upon study, most  amateur "researchers" find that the sharp edge of scripture softens considerably when context is brought into the mix.

Consider the two couples below (Jodie Foster/other and Anderson Cooper/other). Do these couple have anything in common to the degeneracy I described in the first century? How could they be further away from that deplorable activity? The Bible never mentioned gay orientation and was certainly not speaking against the classy and modest couples below and the millions that are just like them.

It is time for inclusion. Those who fight the LGBT community... please let go. Hanging onto an untenable position promotes rancor and frustration. Please drop your sword. It is time to treat all people as God's children. May we all put people, many who have suffered immeasurably, in the protective hands of god.