Creationist to Give Invocation at Inauguration

| 309 Comments

As everyone knows by now, President-Elect Barack Obama has chosen his “friend” Rick Warren to deliver the invocation at his inauguration. Mr. Warren is not just opposed to marriage between homosexuals, but is also an evolution denier. According to The New York Times, Mr. Obama defended his choice with these words:

That’s part of the magic of this country, is [sic] that we are diverse and noisy and opinionated [sic]. That’s hopefully going to be a spirit that carries over into my administration.

Mr. Warren’s position on marriage between homosexuals is now widely known, but according to Sarah Posner, writing in The Nation magazine, Warren is also a creationist:

Warren, a creationist, believes that homosexuality disproves evolution; he told CNN’s Larry King in 2005, “If Darwin was right, which is survival of the fittest[,] then homosexuality would be a recessive gene because it doesn’t reproduce and you would think that over thousands of years that [sic] homosexuality would work itself out of the gene pool.”

Sic, sic, sic. I’ll grant that appointing a creationist to give the invocation is not exactly the same as appointing him science adviser, but if it represents the “spirit” of Mr. Obama’s administration, then I am not, shall we say, optimistic that Mr. Obama is truly the agent for change that he purports to be. His science appointments, I thought, have mostly been good ones, but I am utterly appalled by his inviting a homophobic creationist to deliver the invocation at his inauguration.

309 Comments

Yes, it was more than disappointing to see his selection for invocation, which I question to begin with, i.e. bless his administration? But then again he’s still steeped in the religion thing though he talks about supporting science. We’ll have to see where this goes. The fundies aren’t all that happy about it either because Obama supposedly supports a woman’s choice, etc. None-the-less it makes me wonder about Obama and where he’s heading with this.

It is a strange choice, especially after Obama has re affirmed his position on woman’s reproductive rights, and has chosen a promising Science department, I loath Rick Warren, hes an ignorant douchebag like the rest of them.

3 seconds of research would show him: 1. evolution is a fact, and we know more about it than gravity. and 2. we understand why homosexuality occurs in nature, which it does for many other species besides humans.

idiot.

Paul Williford of Fort Walton Beach, Florida, wrote in a web letter to The Nation:

The obvious choice for the invocation would have been Jim Wallis, the most visible face of progressive evangelicalism, founder of Sojourners and author of God’s Politics: Why the Right Gets It Wrong and the Left Doesn’t Get It and The Great Awakening: Reviving Faith & Politics in a Post–Religious Right America.

Wallis is a strong voice who believes that addressing poverty is one of the central issues of our time, particularly for those of us who call ourselves Christians.

I am sorry I did not think of saying that.

I see Obama as an inclusive agent for change. The greatest change is that he seeks to include individuals from any and all ideologies who agree upon the material goals.

Regrading Warren, I am not shy about my disdain for him. I find him generally destructive to humanity. I place him in the same garbage bin as anyone whose opinion is determined by ideology rather than by evidence.

That said, if Obama’s choice of Warren can direct the efforts of many destructive individuals toward constructive ends, then I’m all for it.

Time will tell.

Let me rephrase that before I get into trouble: If he wanted an evangelical, then Mr. Wallis should have been the obvious choice.

Warren said:

“If Darwin was right, which is survival of the fittest[,] then homosexuality would be a recessive gene because it doesn’t reproduce and you would think that over thousands of years that [sic] homosexuality would work itself out of the gene pool.”

How can a behavioral trait be a gene? How can a gene be recessive? How can a sexual preference prevent reproduction? How can selection completely remove a recessive from the gene pool?

If this guy doesn’t even know what the words mean, why does he use them and why does he use them in this order? Once again, this clueless nitwit proves the rule that an uninformed opinion isn’t worth the paper it wasn’t printed on.

DS said: “If Darwin was right, which is survival of the fittest[,] then homosexuality would be a recessive gene because…”

Either he thinks homosexuality is innate and defies most fundie thinking here, or he’s set himself a logic trap of his own making.

As to Obama’s selection: Warren can spout whatever gibberish he wants for 5 minutes in the cause of inclusion. The fact is that Obama’s science appointments show that we are going to get to return to the real world after eight long years.

I am honestly concerned at the unquestioned following of Obama so many science bloggers have submitted themselves to. I see no reason why a critical eye, a realistic eye, cannot be used in the realm of politics, yet the very scientists who claim to go where the evidence leads seemingly ignore whole swaths of evidence when it comes to questions of political ideology.

Choosing Obama over McCain was a pragmatic choice, because if people chose Nader or some other candidate it would have given McCain an edge in the polls, but since when has science ever been pragmatic? We don’t choose intelligent design because it could so easily remove the ideology of creationism; we stick to the facts and do as best we can to show the reality of evolution.

I just wish more scientists would refuse to use this method selectively.

/rant

I’m not sure what good can come of this. I’m not even sure I’ve ever heard Obama give any explicit comments on what he understands about science and evolution in particular; not many politicians are very knowledgeable or articulate about these issues.

On the other hand, perhaps keeping the creationists talking about their misconceptions and misrepresentations of science and being refuted by professionals in public is better than having their stealth activities continuing to screw up the science curriculum in schools.

If these misconceptions are going to be exposed permanently, it might be better to do it right out in the open than to leave it to naive public school students who are unable to assess and counter the misconceptions and misrepresentations.

But it also seems like a waste of time; ID/Creationists are incapable of learning science (although, hopefully, more enlightened people might benefit from seeing professional refutations of ID/Creationism). Better science reporting in the press would be preferable.

On the radio this week I was hearing callers to the progressive talk shows say they were cancelling their plans to attend the inaugural events in Washington because they are so angry about the Rick Warren thing.

I came up with an analogy: The inauguration is like a big family gathering or reunion. At this time of year, many of us get together with people, many of whom we would never socialize with if we didn’t share some familial relationship. There is the aunt who revels in spreading juicy gossip, the uncle who gets drunk and makes racist comments, the super-religious cousin who insists that everyone hold hands and pray, the diehard vegetarian who always makes disparaging comments about the menu. There are political differences, social differences, wealth differences. Some of them very deep and stress-provoking. But every year or so we gather in the same place as part of our family tradition. And we live through it.

I’m not thrilled about the religiousity of the inauguration much less the selection of Warren, but I don’t think it warrants cutting all ties with the family. And, hey, some of the “cousins” (Warren’s followers) are just as put out about it as we are.

chuck Wrote:

As to Obama’s selection: Warren can spout whatever gibberish he wants for 5 minutes in the cause of inclusion. The fact is that Obama’s science appointments show that we are going to get to return to the real world after eight long years.

Indeed, the science appointments speak volumes and are extremely encouraging. There is an entire army of Bush appointed ideologues that needs to be cleaned out of government. And even in the waning days of the Bush administration they seem to be trying to do as much damage as they can.

but if it represents the “spirit” of Mr. Obama’s administration, then I am not, shall we say, optimistic that Mr. Obama is truly the agent for change that he purports to be.

[snicker.wav] And this is a surprise to you? The Snob is a politician, not a leader, and a Chicago machine politician to boot. The only thing he cares about is his own aggrandizement. He takes positions that he thinks will bring him the best short-term gain, and wouldn’t give a damn about the long-term consequences even if he was smart enough to understand them.

Whenever I hear gay activists and their straight sockpuppets whining about Obama’s selection of Rick Warren to do the inaugural invocation-prayer, I just smile and point out the world-class hypocrisy of all that bellyaching: Obama’s selection to do the inaugural benediction-prayer is, after all, gay-marriage-supporter Joseph Lowery.

Sheesh, guys, your censorship is showing again.…

*******************

Btw, for some of you that are easily susceptible to paranoia, rest easy. Relax. Put your feet up. Be assured that both Obama and Biden are true-blue evolutionists. Biden even sounds like you guys on occasion, when he gets worked up. So please stop worryin’. Everything’s kewl. You boys just whistle and they’ll both come a-runnin like a coupla good lapdogs!!

FL

Weird. Last March, when it was politically risky, he said “I believe in evolution, and I believe there’s a difference between science and faith. That doesn’t make faith any less important than science. It just means they’re two different things. And I think it’s a mistake to try to cloud the teaching of science with theories that frankly don’t hold up to scientific inquiry.” –from the York (PA) Daily Record of 03/30/08.

Now that he’s won the election, he seeks to appease the evo-deniers. I suppose that demonstrates his political acumen, or something.

And this is a surprise to you?

No.

Can someone explain to me how FL’s rude prattle, that suggests that his parents never loved him enough to teach him appropriate social skills, is an example of this Christian “love” people keep bandying about? I mean, I never remembered Jesus commanding His followers to ridicule and mock other people in order to get their jollies, or am I to presume that FL reads from a different translation of the Bible?

FL said:

Whenever I hear gay activists and their straight sockpuppets whining about Obama’s selection of Rick Warren to do the inaugural invocation-prayer, I just smile and point out the world-class hypocrisy of all that bellyaching: Obama’s selection to do the inaugural benediction-prayer is, after all, gay-marriage-supporter Joseph Lowery.

Sheesh, guys, your censorship is showing again.…

*******************

Btw, for some of you that are easily susceptible to paranoia, rest easy. Relax. Put your feet up. Be assured that both Obama and Biden are true-blue evolutionists. Biden even sounds like you guys on occasion, when he gets worked up. So please stop worryin’. Everything’s kewl. You boys just whistle and they’ll both come a-runnin like a coupla good lapdogs!!

FL

Happy Monkey!

Is it a disappointment that Obama did not pick Michael Shermer, Richard Dawkins, Bill Maher or Oderus Urungus?

Censorship, FL?

It is very interesting to hear a committment to truth and charity being described as “censorship”. You lie, of course. I hope you think your god is pleased with you. I rather doubt that you will find out to the contrary, but it would please me if you did.

there seems to be a suggestion that, since Warren is wrong, he should be excluded from dialog. To me, that’s what christians are famous for. Warren represents a very large slice of the community who, despite their apparent retardation, need to be welcomed as part of the community despite the fact they also need to be opposed

snaxalotl said:

there seems to be a suggestion that, since Warren is wrong, he should be excluded from dialog. To me, that’s what christians are famous for. Warren represents a very large slice of the community who, despite their apparent retardation, need to be welcomed as part of the community despite the fact they also need to be opposed

True. One has to recall that Obama is a consummate politician, and the evidence for that is plain. That he might find a means of making a significant gesture of reconciliation is not surprising. I seem to recall Abraham Lincoln’s request of a military band that was leading the celebrations in the street when the end of the Civil War was announced: “Tell them to play ‘Dixie’”.

Nevertheless, ignorance and bigotry, the ugly twins at the head of fundamentalist Christianity, should not be accommodated, no matter how politic it might be. Compromise with them is no virtue; intolerance of them is no vice.

I think it was largely a move to try and put the whole Jeremiah Wright thing behind him by using a very popular and appealing figure that many Americans (especially Conservatives of the social sort) would not object to. Unfortunately I wish he’d managed to pick somebody who wasn’t anti-evolution and who doesn’t think atheism has “killed more people than all the religious wars put together.” His appointments for people that will actually shape policy and make a differences is VERY encouraging. Just a leeeeeeettle bit more effort for this one, that’s all I’d have asked for.

snaxalotl said: there seems to be a suggestion that, since Warren is wrong, he should be excluded from dialog. To me, that’s what christians are famous for.

No, I think you have that backwards. Christians exclude from dialog people that are correct.

Matt Young said:

Let me rephrase that before I get into trouble: If he wanted an evangelical, then Mr. Wallis should have been the obvious choice.

Agreed 100%, that would have been an inspired choice. I first thought of Carlton Pearson, because I find his story so compelling: a man on the rise who dared to challenge religious orthodoxy out of a sense of compassion and was literally declared a heretic for it.

I have to add, too, that in trying to appeal to the Religious Right, the President-elect still drew fire from some of its members, who, ironically, are mad at Warren for speaking at Obama’s inauguration. Warren was a lose-lose choice.

his parents never loved him enough to teach him appropriate social skills

Forgive me while I softly chuckle at your words, Stanton. I can’t help but notice the irony of somebody trying to give me a lecture about “Christian love” while making claims like this.

Needless to say, I stand by what I said. During the 2008 campaign, I gave some thought to the question of how much loyalty evolutionists could honestly expect from Obama and Biden, based on public statements given by both men.

The sincere and rational conclusion that I arrived at was.….well, you already read it dude. Fact is, only one analogy describes Obama/Biden’s current level of loyalty.… “Arf Arf!!”

Btw, you can afford to smile instead of frown about my assessment, because you already know it’s da truth, da whole truth, and nuthin’ but da truth, so help me Darwin!

FL :)

ETA: HT to Dana Hunter for the second news item, link fixed here.

P.S.: Merry Christmas, FL! Now, I have to go back to mercilessly censoring those scientific manuscripts from the ID proponents that are never submitted in the first place. ;-)

So in other words, I take it that you were taught to mock all those who do not share your world beliefs and opinions, and to never to view such people as being human? I mean, that you refer to Obama and Biden as being dogs means that you don’t regard them as human, after all, right?

By the way, how come you haven’t bothered to explain why Jesus Christ disproves things like the observed appearance of antibiotic resistant bacteria in response to misuse of antibiotics or the development of orchid and dog breeds?

Why is it that posters like FL leave a smile emoticon at the end of an attack? Is this to be understood as an ironic “FYATHYRIO”?

There’s only one person I would recommend in place of Warren and who shows any intelligence; that person is Barry Lynn, head of the group Americans United for the Separation of Church and State. http://www.au.org/site/PageServer

I see Obama’s choices as excellent examples of a new approach to policy making. As Obama explained

“A couple of years ago I was invited to Rick Warren’s church to speak despite his awareness that I held views that were entirely contrary to his when it came to gay and lesbian rights, when it came to issues like abortion,” he said. “Nevertheless I had an opportunity to speak, and that dialogue I think is part of what my campaign’s been all about, that we’re not going to agree on every single issue, but what we have to do is to be able to create an atmosphere where we can disagree without being disagreeable, and then focus on those things that we hold in common as Americans.”

Dialogue is the only way to bring together people who may differ on some fundamental issues but can look beyond and find some common ground. Furthermore, while Warren will do the invocation, the benediction is done by Reverend Joseph Lowery who is a strong pro-gay advocate and progressive. Starting with the old, ending with the new, while bringing together a large evangelical audience.

If people just could stop whining about how unfair this all is, and realize that the Obama ‘table’ is large enough to accommodate people of all faiths, beliefs etc.

Or we could return to a policy of arrogance where politics ignores the realities and refuses to bring together people of different beliefs.

Remember, It’s not all about you… And Obama has shown the great insight and leadership to bring together people rather than to divide them. If that scares people then they probably deserve the fear.

We Christians don’t need to encourage and promote that kind of tragedy, PvM. That’s why, for those Christians that live in a voting democracy, our only Christ-honoring choice is to raise our voices and votes to OPPOSE legalized gay marriage. That’s the only possible Christian direction, PvM.

Thank God millions of Christians have come to reject this argument. I appreciate your attempts to base your beliefs on Biblical teachings and have to reject them.

If you are so against sin then why not oppose any an all sin, why focus almost exclusively on gays? As others have pointed out, the Bible mentions more explicitly sins worth the penalty of death. Sins which you seem to ignore in favor of an attempt to interpret the Bible to suit your needs.

So it turns out, that YES, malakoi means the passive partner is a homosexual relationship. You’re welcome to refute or disprove that definition, but obviously you won’t be able to.

I have already done so my dear friend. Malakoi’s interpretation of the passive partner is one which is rejected by many scholars. Just because your Bible defines it as such, does not make it a scholarly interpretation.

To give you a flavor

I Cor. 6:9-10 (NIV)

“… Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor MALE PROSTITUTES (malakoi) nor HOMOSEXUAL OFFENDERS (arsenokoitai) nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.”

I Tim. 1:9-10 (NIV)

“We also know that the law is made not for good men but for lawbreakers and rebels, the ungodly and sinful, the unholy and irreligious; for those who kill their fathers and mothers, for murderers, for adulterers and PERVERTS (arsenokoitais), for slave traders and liars and perjurers.”

What the NIV refers to in 1 Cor. 9 supposedly as “homosexual offenders” and later in 1 Tim. 1:10 as “perverts” is related in Paul’s original letters with the single Greek word arsenokoitai(s) The translators for King James render the word as “abusers of themselves with mankind.” Other modern translations construe the term as “child molesters” or even “sodomites” (ironic since we know that the Sodomites were not condemned for homosexuality). Compare the following common translations of the term arsenokoitai.

and Malakoi

Malakoi suffers from the same lexical complexity. The word malakos means literally “soft.” There is no indication that it was used in the time of Paul as a derogatory remark leveled exclusively against gays. On the contrary, Hellenistic literature is replete with examples of heterosexuals being characterized as malakos. The label seemed to indicate some sort of general moral weakness or excess. The early church fathers invoked the word malakos against masturbation. Moreover they never used the word to imply being “effeminate” but rather list other terms for this purpose including thelubrios and androgunos whence the term “androgyny.”

Did Paul intend to condemn homosexuals? It would appear that his writings leave us with no compelling evidence to decide in the affirmative. Regardless, Paul was a poor authority when it came to matters of sex. He remained single all his life and wished that all men were as he. He saw marriage as a last resort for those who couldn’t control their sexual desires. Said Paul, “it is better to marry than to burn” (I Cor. 7:8-9). He thought marriage was good for younger widows to keep them from growing idle and becoming “gossips and busybodies” (I Tim. 5:13). Although Paul was a devout follower of Christ who communed intimately with the Lord, it is fair to say that he didn’t fully appreciate the love which God created to be shared between two people.

I’m wearing a poly/cotton blend shirt. Come and stone me.

Sure. Just gotta clear the paperwork first.

(1) Are you (the ston-ee) Jewish? Please check yes or no.

(2) Am I (the ston-er) Jewish? Please check yes or no.

(3) Please locate and place a checkmark beside your stated crime on the official Jewish Torah Death Penalty List:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_o[…]in_the_Torah

(Applications without all questions properly checkmarked will be rejected.)

****

Okay, that’s everything Fnxtr. Please submit your completed application back to me with $50 application fee as soon as possible. Management reserves the right to refuse stoning for any application failing to correctly meet all stoning requirements.

Visa and Mastercard accepted. No refunds!

****

And on a more serious note:

Differentiating the two types of laws answers the question, “Why do Christians quote the Old Testament on homosexuality, then ignore the commands that prohibit eating shellfish or wearing clothing of mixed fibers?”

The important distinction between these laws is reflected in the Old Testament penalties for breaking them: Disobedience to the ceremonial laws resulted in uncleanness (Lev. 11:24, etc.), while breaching the moral law meant death (Lev. 20).

– Bob Davies, (1994).

http://home.messiah.edu/~chase/h/ar[…]les/art7.htm

FL

funny how FL is quick to reject other sinful behavior based on ‘interpretations’ but fails to extend the same logic to instances which do support his ‘beliefs’.

Showing once again that the Bible is open to many a different reading and interpretation.

Thanks for playing FL.

Using FL’s ‘logic’ we can thus reject Leviticus as applying to Old Testament Jewish people and we remain with no direct statements of Jesus on the topic and a less than clear usage of terms like malakoi and arsenokoites by Paul which may very well have referenced the pagan tradition of temple prostitution and those who frequents them.

PvM said:

funny how FL is quick to reject other sinful behavior based on ‘interpretations’ but fails to extend the same logic to instances which do support his ‘beliefs’.

Showing once again that the Bible is open to many a different reading and interpretation.

Thanks for playing FL.

And as Byrne Fone observes in his book “Homophobia” Leviticus 18:22 immediately follows another prohibition in 18:21 which has caused people to suggest that 18:22 is a prohibition against temple prostitution as a form of idolatry, a topic which seems to cause far more Biblical concerns.

Just a quickie question for PvM.….on your recent post there (the 1:10 pm post WRT “malakoi”), what source are you quoting from there?

***

Also, you ask

If you are so against sin then why not oppose any an all sin, why focus almost exclusively on gays?

Sure. The answer to your question starts with this question:

Why are gays and their straight pals focusing almost exclusively on attacking Rick Warren over gay marriage, when Warren has addressed all kinds of sins as a long-time pastor?

After all, “there’s enough sin to go around” as Phil Donahue once said, but you don’t see a huge organized radical political/media movement to enshrine sin directly into the law of the land. Except for one group: The Gay Activists.

Nobody’s asking for singling out one group of sinners to the exclusion of all the rest of us sinners, PvM.

Instead, the situation is that one group of sinners is going all out, with a level of collective commitment that puts many Christians and churches to shame, to transform an entire nation.

Going all-out to change laws, change hearts, change minds, change adults, change youths, to their side, to ultimately accept and legalize their homosexual marriage agenda.

To persuade an entire nation to legitimize and enshrine –legally and culturally and even religiously– a sexual behavior which the Bible clearly calls sin and abomination, and to dispense with a millenia-old planetwide marital standard that was created, designed, and approved by a loving caring God for us humans.

It’s like an all-out Evangelistic Mission From Hell or something, a very clear national-level repudiation of “In God We Trust” principle that’s printed on our money.

***

So, like a frog in a slowly boiling kettle, the Christian can choose to keep quiet, and pretend that the Bible condones homosexual behavior when it clearly doesn’t. That’s how the gay activists like it: Don’t be a “fundie”, just be a good little Christian, just bend over, (either tacitly or overtly), and enjoy what comes next.

OR.….Christians can at least raise their voices and their votes here in this country and honor their professed Lord and Savior Jesus Christ by refusing to give tacit nor overt approval to legalized gay marriage.

Just say no, just vote no, and instead call attention to the alternative to homosexual bondage—Jesus Christ and the salvation, healing and freedom from sin-addictions that he offers to all people. That’s all.

FL

OR.….Christians can at least raise their voices and their votes here in this country and honor their professed Lord and Savior Jesus Christ by refusing to give tacit nor overt approval to legalized gay marriage.

This presumes that such a position honors Jesus Christ. In fact, such a position may be highly suspect given Biblical teachings.

Of course, Christians can raise their voices in opposition of same sex marriage for the same reason they can raise their voices in opposition to evolutionary theory and more, that does not mean that they have a valid secular and/or religious argument.

We remain with no direct statements of Jesus

But we got plenty of indirect statements of Jesus, don’t we?

Please, PvM, let’s stop pretending that those indirect but very clear statements of Jesus don’t exist. Let’s stop pretending we don’t know what direction Jesus’s words clearly point in. Let’s stop pretending that this stuff isn’t in your New Testament and mine too.

Here’s a detailed, spelled-out reminder:

It is not mere coincidence that when Jesus dealt with an issue of sexual behavior in Mark 10:2-12 he cited the same two texts from Genesis, 1:27 and 2:24, that lie behind Paul’s critique of homosexual practice.

Jesus adopted a “back-to-creation” model of sexuality. He treated Genesis 1:27 and 2:24 as normative and prescriptive for the church (Mark 10:6-9). In contending for the indissolubility of marriage, Jesus clearly presupposed the one explicit prerequisite in Gen 1:27 and 2:24; namely, that there be a male and female, man and woman, to effect the “one flesh” reunion.

******

Jesus was not suggesting that lifelong monogamy was a more important consideration for sexual relations than the heterosexual (i.e. other-sexual) dimension. Rather, he narrowed further an already carefully circumscribed sexual ethic given to him in the Hebrew Bible. Sexual behavior mattered for Jesus. In the midst of Jesus’ sayings on sex in Matthew 5:27-32 appears the following remark: “If your eye or hand should threaten your downfall, cut it off. It is better to go into heaven maimed then to have one’s whole body be sent to hell.”

******

There are many other sayings of Jesus, besides Mark 10:6-9, that, taken in the context of early Judaism, implicitly forbade same-sex intercourse.

These include: the reference to “sexual immoralities” (porneiai) in Mark 7:21, a term that for Jews of the Second Temple period called to mind the forbidden sexual offenses in Lev 18 and 20, particularly incest, adultery, same-sex intercourse, and bestiality (cf. the prohibition of porneia in the Apostolic Decree in Acts 15, formulated with the sex laws in Lev 18 in view);

Jesus’ affirmation of the seventh commandment against adultery in Mark 10:17-22, which presupposes the preservation of the male-female marital bond (cf. the reference to not coveting one’s neighbor’s wife in the tenth commandment), and could be used in early Judaism as a rubric for treating the sex laws in the Bible, including the proscriptions of male-male intercourse (cf. Philo, Special Laws, 3);

Jesus’ acknowledgement of Sodom’s role in Scripture as the prime example of abuse of visitors in Matt 10:14-15 par. Luke 10:10-12, which in the context of other early Jewish texts indicates a special revulsion for the attempt at treating males sexually as females (e.g., Philo, Josephus, Testament of Naphtali 3:3-4; 2 Enoch 10:4; 34:1-2; within Scripture, Ezek 16:50; Jude 7; and 2 Pet 2:6-10 also point in this direction); and Jesus’ warning against giving “what is holy to the dogs” (Matt 7:6), a likely echo to Deut 23:17-18 which forbids the wages of a “dog” or qadesh (lit., the self-styled “holy man,” “sacred one,” but often translated “male temple prostitute”) from being used to pay a vow to the “house of Yahweh” (for “dog,” cf. Rev 22:15 with Rev 21:8).

The unanimous and unequivocal opposition to same-sex intercourse that persisted in early Judaism and in early Christianity leaves little doubt about what Jesus’ view was.

The portrait of Jesus in the Sermon on the Mount is of someone who, instead of loosening the law, closed its loopholes and intensified its demands (Matthew 5:17-48). Jesus did devote his ministry to seeking out the “lost” and “sick,” such as sexual sinners and the biggest economic exploiters of Jesus’ day (tax collectors). Yet he did so in the hope of bringing about their restoration through grateful repentance.

He understood the command to “love your neighbor as yourself” (Leviticus 19:18; cited in Mark 12:30) in its context, which included the command to “reprove your neighbor and so not incur guilt because of him” (Leviticus 19:18). Continual forgiveness was available to those who sinned and repented (Luke 17:3-4). Jesus’ requirement for discipleship was self-denial, self-crucifixion, and the losing of one’s life (Mark 8:34-37; Matthew 10:38-39).

It is time to deconstruct the false portrait of a sexually tolerant Jesus.

NT professor Robert AJ Gagnon http://www.robgagnon.net/homoPresby[…]yArticle.htm

******

All this evidence, PvM. All this evidence. You see it, I see it, it’s right there upfront. As a Christian, won’t you join me in accepting that evidence?

FL

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This page contains a single entry by Matt Young published on December 20, 2008 5:49 PM.

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