Those upset by homosexuality typically cite the four brief Biblical admonitions against male same-sex behavior, emphasizing Leviticus. But they want their Bible both ways: quote it to condemn behaviors they find distasteful while ignoring the scores of other proscriptions — particularly in Leviticus — ignored by every Christian I know, myself included.
And what Christian would want to practice behaviors that are sanctioned by Leviticus, such as sexual relations with another man’s slavegirl? Or comply with Deuteronomy 22 and stone to death brides who are found not to be virgins? And if I buy St. Paul’s proscription against male/male sex, don’t I also have to buy his support of slavery, along with his versions of correct wifely behavior? While we’re at it, shouldn’t we also condemn women who defy the writer of Timothy and wear braids, curls, pearls, gold and expensive fabrics? Of course not — and that’s the point.
Jesus said nothing about same-sex activity. But he was absolutely clear about one issue pertaining to heterosexuals: that both parties in a marriage where the wife has been previously divorced are committing adultery (found in all three synoptic Gospels).
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My faith centers on the Sermon on the Mount (and Plain) and the Beatitudes, on following the Way of the Cross and in trying my best to live the example of Christ. It does not use the Bible as a cudgel to attack other children of God whose “sin” is different from my sin. Being slaves to Christ, as St. Paul so wonderfully put it, is what it’s about. May we all come together under Christ’s banner to do His work.
— Bob Griffiths
St. Boniface, Sarasota
Monday, August 08, 2005