April 29, 2013

10 Myths And Facts About Gay Rights And Marriage



One of the most pernicious myths of the present gay movement is the notion that Christians who embrace the biblical view of homosexuality should hate and/or kill homosexuals. The New Testament is based on proactive love-based ethics versus the often vindictive "eye-for-an-eye" law-based ethics portrayed in the Old Testament. Jesus emphasized the differentiation between the old covenant and the new one in his very first sermon noted in the introduction of the New Testament. The gay rights movement today is steeped in misinformation and there is a need to bring some important facts to the table.

The American Dream Blog has pointed out how politically correct hegemony is being used as a means for unfounded discrimination. As noted in a recent incident, "A 14-year-old student at a public school in Texas was suspended from school for saying that he believes that homosexuality is wrong." When LGBT marriages are adopted as a civil right, then we will see less overall justice in the system because the minority will have limited the basic free speech rights of the majority.

Christians and any theists who believe homosexuality is morally wrong will become increasingly subject to legal and governmental harassment simply for holding and expressing moral views. As Christians, we aren't promoting any "hate speech" at all when we affirm the teachings of the New Testament, but teachings based on love in truth.
 
I have some gay friends and acquaintances who I believe do deserve to be protected with rights as citizens and as domestic partners, however, there are a number of reasons why civil marriage between LGBT partners is not a good idea in my opinion. I've found that there are at least 10 myths being presented in concert with the present gay agenda. 
 
We live in a day when many nominal Christians and neoconservatives do not wish to be identified with the Christ of scripture or the teachings of scripture in general. There is a hesitancy to take a stand when the winds of politically correct doctrine are contrary. However, Jesus described the correct attitude of his followers, saying, "You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot." (Matthew 5.13 NIV)

Whether it's for a sense of validation, monetary reasons, or any other reason, there is a lot of political pressure today to affirm alternative sexual lifestyles and codify alternative marriage forms as a civil right. Last month, for example, the neoconservative MSM talking head Bill O'Reilly claimed that people who take a biblical perspective on life, "Bible thumpers" as he calls us, do not have any valid argument that could possibly be used to question the ascendancy of alternative marriage forms as a civil right:

"The compelling argument is on the side of homosexuals. That’s where the compelling argument is: ‘We are Americans. We just want to be treated like everybody else.’ That’s a compelling argument. And to deny that you’ve got to have a very strong argument on the other side."

O'Reilly's claim that all conservative Christians can do is "thump the Bible" is quite false. The fact is that fundamentalist Christians, such as William Lane Craig, have been trouncing secular humanists in public debates on a variety of issues, including questions about morality. And the most prominent secular atheists make all kinds of absurd excuses for not debating Craig. But the way the system works today, serious public debate on critical subjects is almost always avoided. When people behind a spurious agenda have weak arguments or a lack of valid philosophical justification, they tend to use media hegemony and political hegemony as opposed to engaging in serious public debate.

For a basic outline on the biblical perspective on homosexuality and Christianity, I would recommend  two blog posts by William Lane Craig. One is entitled, "Christian Homosexuals?" and another is entitled, "A Christian Perspective on Homosexuality"

We will probably never see Bill O'Reilly invite a serious defender of biblical views onto his show, such as William Lane Craig, because the PC hegemony simply cannot stand up to such logical criticism. Instead, we will likely witness the continuous evisceration of basic civil rights in favor of spurious ones based not on objective facts, but on subjective feelings. But those who are familiar with the reliable truths of scripture understand that truth and love win in the end, no matter how much misinformation is projected against us in our day.

Once LGBT marriage is granted and affirmed as a civil right, then a Pandora's Box of increasing  confusion and delusion will have been opened. For example, if the bisexual identity is protected as a civil right, then it would only follow that bisexual marriage should be protected as a civil right. In this case polygamy will become a civil right because, after all, the sexual orientations and appetites of bisexuals deserve equal marriage status. When you do the math, one biological male bisexual would be entitled to a male and a female in marriage. One biological female bisexual in marriage would be entitled to one male and one female. That would make four people entitled to a single marriage union, that is, unless either of the two additional marriage partners were in love with 5th and 6th parties. It could go on mathematically with no end

Before diving into this subject, it helps to understand and clarify two key currently-used terms: gender identity and sexual orientation. The term "gender identity" refers to a subjective self identification that does not really have anything to do with a person's biologically born equipment. Sexual orientation refers to a person's sense of physical attraction. Both terms are based on the subjective feelings of the individual.

Myth 1: Disagreeing with the behavior of homosexuality means that you must "hate" LGBT people.
Fact 1: The most basic interpretation of the biblical New Testament Christian view is based on loving all people, despite whatever lifestyle a person may embrace. And to claim that disagreement is "hate" is baseless slander.
 
Myth 2: There is conclusive scientific evidence that genetics alone causes people to be gay.
Fact 2: No 'gay gene' has been discovered and there is no conclusive evidence genetics alone is responsible. Actually,  "Eight major studies of identical twins in Australia, the U.S., and Scandinavia during the last two decades all arrive at the same conclusion: gays were not born that way."
 
Myth 3: There are no strong logical arguments supporting the biblical view of homosexuality.
Fact 3: Science, history, philosophy and psychology are realms in which the biblical view can be logically supported.

Myth 4: The public acceptance of homosexuality is the result of a long, progressive trend in history.
Fact 4: Historically, the popularity of homosexuality has been a like a pendulum reflecting general societal moral conditions.

Myth 5: If a majority of people believe something is morally right, then it must be right.
Fact 5: This is a logical fallacy known as argumentum ad populum (Latin for "appeal to the people").

Myth 6: Accepting gay marriage as a civil right will have no negative effects on society.
Fact 6: Discrimination against those who support strong family values, the basis of a strong society, and freedom of religious conscience, will increase exponentially when homosexual marriage is granted as a civil right. We see this already.

Myth 7: If the government validates homosexual marriage as a civil right, then it is morally right.
Fact 7: This known as an argument from authority (argumentum ad auctoritatem) and it is a logical fallacy.

Myth 8: There is a clear scientific basis for justifying  LGBT marriage as a valid civil right.
Fact 8: There is no conclusive objective scientific evidence that homosexual behavior is genetic, and basing a civil right on subjective "self-identification" is not in keeping with legal tradition.

Myth 9: There is no logical connection between promoting LGBT rights and bestiality or pedophilia.
Fact: 9  Because LGBT rights are actually based on sexual preference, not biological characteristics, then a precedent is set for other "civil rights" based on subjective feelings and sexual desires alone.

Myth 10: The civil rights battle for gays is the same or similar to the civil rights battle for blacks.
Fact 10: The civil rights battle for blacks was based on objective, biological differences between people. The gay rights movement so far has no such confirmed basis.

A little elaboration on these points...

Fact 1: The most pernicious myth today is the promotion of the idea that biblical New Testament Christianity entails hating and killing homosexuals. Nothing could be further from the truth. When gay activists point to the Westboro Baptist Church as an example of valid, biblical Christianity, it is like pointing to Hitler as the prime example of German culture. There is simply no logical basis to make such comparisons. According to scripture, God loves the world and Christians are to love all people in the world, as noted,

"For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life." (John 3.15 NIV)

"Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love." (I John 4.8 NIV)

People will often point to the Old Testament claiming that all who believe the Bible must hate gays because homosexuality is listed as a capital offense in verses such as Leviticus 20:13. This is false logic for a couple of reasons. Firstly, the fact that something is listed as a capital offense does not suggest any emotional qualifications, such as hatred. Secondly, verses pulled from the book of Leviticus outline a different dispensation, a different covenant, and an autonomous political theocracy that was neither in existence in the time of the early church nor in our time today. 

The present New Testament dispensation and covenant does not emphasize a legalistic religious code, but grace. John 1.17 outlines, "For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ." In grace and truth there neither extreme legalism nor hatred. The New Testament is based on a new covenant that was predicted in the Old Testament in Jeremiah 31:

"Behold, the days are coming, declares the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and the house of Judah... For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, declares the Lord: I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts... And no longer shall each one teach his neighbor and each his brother, saying, ‘Know the Lord,’ for they shall all know me, from the least of them to the greatest, declares the Lord. For I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more."

These verses basically predicted that a new covenant would be established that would offer a reinterpretation of The Law, of holiness, of forgiveness, based on grace and knowing God personally, not by obeying strict rules. This is the essence of what Jesus brought in his first coming. Like a legal agreement, a new covenant supersedes an old one. 
Thus, there is no reason at all to assume that all the previous rules apply. Quite the contrary, there is reason to focus on the new legal agreement as the standard. In New Testament accounts, Jesus forgave sinners and showed compassion, as noted in Luke's gospel chapter 7, when Jesus forgave the prostitute. There is no room in the biblical New Covenant for the myth that Christians are supposed to hate and kill gays. 

Some antagonists will claim, "That is your interpretation of scripture. How do you know you are right? The Bible says 'kill homosexuals' so you should kill and hate, that's what you believe today."

When critics make the claim that Christians should follow all of the Old Testament law to the letter, emphasize the basic differences between the Old Testament and New Testament as described in scripture. This subject is referred to as supersessionism. Though there are disagreements about specifics, all three main historical traditions within Christianity — Orthodox, Catholic and Protestant, have acknowledged the same basics. Even the Catholic church, known for it more religious approach to morality,
officially underscored the biblical emphasis of grace over law in their catechisms. Two example of many: "Our justification comes from the grace of God." and "The Holy Spirit is the master of the interior life. By giving birth to the "inner man," justification entails the sanctification of his whole being." 

Outline of basic Christian supersessionism

1. Orthodox, Catholic and Protestant traditions acknowledge New Testament supersessionism.
2. The New Testament is based on a new covenant.
3. The new covenant is supersedes the old covenant.
4. The new covenant emphasizes grace over the law.
5. The new covenant emphasizes changed relationships and attitudes with God and among fellow citizens.
6. These changed attitudes reflect proactive love-based ethics over vindictive law-based ethics, as outlined by Christ in the Sermon on the Mount, the introduction of the New Testament.

Because there are so many extra-biblical and heretical professors and theologians today, it's best to go back and scrutinize the original sources and recorded history. Where are the supposed examples in the New Testament that could possibly justify the hatred or killing of gays? There are none. There is no example of the church killing anyone due to sexual sins. However, I Corinthians 5 does outline how a person practicing incest could have been recommended for execution
according to Levitical law, but was instead lovingly disciplined by the church.

Jesus outlined the basics of supersessionism in the Sermon of the Mount, which set the tone for the entire New Testament and all other examples of New Testament ethics. Old Testament ethics are based upon vindictive legalism: "Eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot," (Exodus 21.24, KJV) Jesus offered, "You have heard that it was said, ‘Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.' But I tell you, do not resist an evil person. If anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to them the other cheek also." (Matthew 5. 38-39 NIV)  Jesus was offering a new, non-violent, non-vindictive approach. 

Critics will say, "But Jesus said the law must not be broken, that it must be fulfilled, therefore Jesus supported the Old Testament..." (Matthew 5. 17-18) There are two ways in which the New Testament fulfills the law. Firstly, in Christ himself, and, secondly, by the word of God. In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus raised the bar of sin and law showing that no human can possibly fulfill the law's requirements because we have all disqualified ourselves with evil thoughts at one time or another. Because Jesus is perfect and died as a perfect propitiation for our sin, however, he did in fact fulfill all of the law for all who would believe and follow him. 
  

1. Jesus raised the bar in the Sermon on the Mount offering that even evil thoughts make everyone worthy of death according to the law.

2. Therefore, no one can be justified by the law alone.

3. In offering himself as a sacrifice for sin, Jesus offered a fulfillment of the law. Jesus did not abolish the requirements of the law - perfection - but offered us his own perfection, a sinless life, as a sacrificial atonement on the cross.


A second factor here is the word of God. The law is "fulfilled" insofar as it serves its purpose as a tutor leading us to Christ. Galatians 3.24 states, "Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith." (KJV). In pointing to Christ, the purpose of the law has been fulfilled. Paul wrote that the law was made for sinners, not for the righteous. (I Timothy 1.9) Once we are born again by the Holy Spirit and acquire the new nature Paul described in Romans 6, then we become free from our slavery to the sin nature:
 
"We know that our old self was crucified with him in order that the body of sin might be brought to nothing, so that we would no longer be enslaved to sin.." (Romans 6.6, ESV). Thus, the most effective manner of fulfilling the law and seeing a righteous society is for as many people as possible to become genuine Christians, to receive the Holy Spirit and know the inner power of loving God and loving others.

The pattern of 'love over law' is noted throughout the Sermon on the Mount and throughout the New Testament. Jesus explained that love and grace do not nullify the law (Matthew 5. 17) but fulfill it by offering a better way of meeting its requirements. There is still an objective basis of right and wrong in God's eternal righteous existence. For more information on that subject, see article, If God Exists, Then Objective Morality Exists. As opposed to hatred and killing, Christians are simply to shine the light of truth in a dark world and to be a preserving influence in an immoral world, even as salt preserves food products (Matthew 5.13-16)
 
Based on Jesus' many examples, living in the light of the gospel and being a moral salt in a morally decaying world simply means to speak the truth and to demonstrate grace and love to others. It's not cloudy, it's quite simple. For all these reasons, the antagonist has the burden of proof in making the claim that Christians should hate and kill gays. Prominent theologians such as C.S. Lewis and William Lane Craig have confirmed the New Testament view advocates truth and love when dealing with this subject. Most secular critics are not familiar with supercessionism, the main purpose of the law, and the concept of eternal justice, as outlined at this link. When these three aspects are considered, there is no logical contradiction in the Christian view of homosexuality in the Old and New Testament.

Fact 2: No 'gay gene' has been discovered and there is no conclusive evidence genetics alone is responsible. There are a number of important aspects that can be considered with this issue. One has to do with verifying conclusive scientific evidence related to genetics studies. And other points are "even if" considerations. For example, even if new epi-mark gender-bending evidence were to be conclusively verified, this raises other questions about the basis of moral right and wrong and chicken and egg type scenarios.

William Lane Craig raised a hypothetical example, people may be born with addictive traits and find they have a compelling inclination to binge on alcohol. Just because there is this addictive trait, does that mean that addiction to drugs and alcohol are morally acceptable or desirable? No, it does not. And a person has a choice to restrain inclinations that are immoral.

Because a man looks effeminate and acts effeminate and even may have felt attraction for men, this does not necessitate gay sexual activity, which is a choice. There are men today who call themselves meterosexuals, who look gay and act gay, but who are straight. Because Tim Tebow goes to a nail salon, it could imply that he is secretly gay, or that he just prefers some things that may seem feminine. The gay web site Queerty reads into these types of things, offering, "he also had a bromantic dinner with Fred Durst there recently." Genetic discoveries, and all evidence, tends to be framed according to preconceptions.

In December 2012, scientists basically agreed that, as of today, no "gay gene" has been discovered.  However, people are now presenting a new speculative theories as fact. Notice how the 'non-scientist makes the following claim:

"Okay. I’m going to try to get through this science as best I can.

In The Quarterly Review of Biology, researchers at UC Santa Barbara and Uppsala University in Sweden have concluded through their research that sexual orientation can be decided through epi-marks, which are temporary switches in a fetus’ DNA that exist while in the womb and shortly after birth."

In contrast to the open-ended nature of the discoveries and implications, a co-author of the study, Sergey Gavrilets, claims that this is the 'best explanation' so far for the presupposed fact that some people are born gay:

"Transmission of sexually antagonistic epi-marks between generations is the most plausible evolutionary mechanism of the phenomenon of human homosexuality."

Notice how the scientist has already decided that homosexuality has a genetic basis, he's just trying to find the proof, that is, the 'best explanation' so far. A person's perspective on homosexuality relates to a person's perspective on God's existence. From a philosophical and historical perspective, objective moral values are based on God's existence. As William Lane Craig has pointed, deeper questions need to be asked to get to the root issues. "But this question [is homosexuality a sin?] raises an even deeper question, which we’ve got to answer first: do right and wrong really exist? Before you can determine what is right and wrong, you have to know that there really is right and wrong."
Another "even if" point to consider is this: Even if unique, physiological traits are discovered in homosexuals, how do we know which came first? In Romans 1.24, Paul states, "Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. Some have interpreted this to mean that people who commit to homosexuality do undergo some type of codifying physical change.
 
Could there be a slight physiological changes that occur when a person fully commits to practicing a gay lifestyle? Kerby Anderson addresses physiological differences as the 'chicken and the egg' type questions:

"When there is a difference in brain structure, is the difference the result of sexual orientation or is it the cause of sexual orientation? Researchers, for example, have found that when people who become blind begin to learn Braille, the area of the brain controlling the reading finger actual grows larger."
 
All the gay friends and acquaintances I have, who have taken time to open up and confide in me, have explained that they had either been molested or exposed to extremely age-inappropriate material and experiences at very young ages.

In contrast to these types of genetic studies, other studies suggest that child molestation is a major factor influencing people to adopt a homosexual lifestyle. The California School of Professional Psychology published findings in a report entitled, "Comparative data of childhood and adolescence molestation in heterosexual and homosexual persons" and the abstract states, "In research with 942 nonclinical adult participants, gay men and lesbian women reported a significantly higher rate of childhood molestation than did heterosexual men and women." 7% of the heterosexual men reported molestation, 22% of the lesbian women reported molestation and a whopping 46% of the gay men reported molestation. These types of high statistics ring true with the accounts of gay friends and acquaintances of mine who have confided in me that they were either molested or had some extremely age-inappropriate experiences that influenced them towards becoming gay. Ellen DeGeneres has been able to describe her molestation as a teenager in public interviews
    
Fact 3: The fields of science, history, philosophy and psychology are realms in which the biblical view can be supported. As far as arguments go, "bible thumping" is not necessary. I've already discussed the main scientific evidence in the previous point.

History

Edward Gibbon, in his classic History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, stated, “The dignity of marriage was restored by the Christians” (Decline and Fall, p. 813).

It is an objectively true statement that a man and a woman are biologically different. There is no sound objective basis, however, to claim that all the colors of the LGBT rainbow represent different biological gender identities. A person may say he is transgender or transsexual based on his feelings and may even get a physical sex change, however, if his feelings change then he needs to find a different kind of partner, perhaps a regular gay partner. Basing the civil union of marriage on subjective feelings alone, not on the objective qualities, undermines the dignity of marriage. See Myth 3 for more on historical aspects of homosexuality.

Philosophy

I mentioned William Lane Craig earlier in this post. He is the foremost debater in the world and one of his strongest arguments is the moral argument for God's existence.

The most popular secular atheists, such as PZ Myers, offer confused views about morality. In one sentence Myers claims that morality is based on human empathy. This is how he summarized his moral view: "If I punched you in the face, you would feel bad and I would feel bad ...and that's where morality comes from." Then, ironically, in another post of his he mocks people who use feelings as a basis of morality.  When popular secular atheists do acknowledge that there is an objective basis of morality, then they cannot explain why, as noted here and here. Science cannot answer questions regarding morality and therefore both religion and philosophy hold primacy when it comes to addressing questions on this subject. The pretension in public schools, universities and in government that secular humanism without religion and philosophy holds all the answers is quite a false and dangerous pretension.

Psychology

A New York Times article, "Two Classes, Divided by 'I Do," offered the following information:

"Citing a host of secular, liberal professors, the article came to the same conclusion as longtime apologists for traditional marriage: it's not only good for the soul but also for one's bank account." Mindy Scott, a Child Trends demographer, stated, "Having men in the house for a short time with ambiguous parenting roles can be really disruptive for children.”

According to the study, outlined here, children raised by married biological parents (IBF) were compared with children of parents who had various lesbian and homosexual relationship experiences (LM and GF). Children of the latter category are found to have the following attributes:

1. Are much more likely to have received welfare (IBF 17%; LM 69%; GF 57%)

2. Have lower educational attainment

3. Report less safety and security in their family of origin

4. Report more ongoing "negative impact" from their family of origin

5. Are more likely to suffer from depression

6. Have been arrested more often

7. If they are female, have had more sexual partners--both male and female

 
Fact 4: Historically, the popularity of homosexuality has been a like a pendulum reflecting general societal moral conditions. A recent  article about NBA player Jason Collins offered the phrase, "The evolution of pro sports' acceptance of gays: A timeline" The underlying message is that accepting gay morality is an ever progressive trend. It's not. 
 
Looking at actual history, it is quite clear that homosexuality has gone through phases of unpopularity and popularity as civilizations rise and fall. There is a pendulum of history that swings between heightened moral righteousness and extreme moral relativism. These repeated cycles, and the effects, are well documented in scripture, as well as in secular texts.

Fact 5: If a public consensus offers that something is true, that does not mean it is true. It is remarkable how often pro-gay supporters hold their fingers in the wind and then describe how public opinion continues to change, as though public opinion validates all of our moral choices. This appeal to public opinion is a logical fallacy known as argumentum ad populum (Latin for "appeal to the people").  Because it is a logical fallacy, it is meaningless as a logical means of arriving at true conclusions.

Fact 6: Discrimination against those who support strong family values, the basis of a strong society, will increase exponentially when homosexual marriage is granted as a civil right. We see this heightened discrimination against traditional family values already ramping up. The Christian News Network describes how a high school teacher in Portland Oregon was taken away by police because he did not want Planned Parenthood teaching promiscuity in his classroom. The following is an example of the type of material Planned Parenthood promotes:

"Planned Parenthood of Columbia Williamette is behind a youth sex campaign called “Take Care Down There,” which includes a website that features a warning that the content is for “mature” viewers before guests are allowed to enter. The site includes such controversial skits as “Hot and Heavy,” “Bring Your Sister,” “Threesome” and “The Down There Song,” as well as other titles that are too graphic for Christian News Network to repeat."

The Revival Times points out, "On 29th June the district court in Kalmar, Sweden, sentenced วบke Green for preaching against homosexuality in the Borgholm Pentecostal Church on 20th July 2003. He was found guilty of "agitating against a people group", an act that had been criminalised in Sweden in 2002." These types of cases set precedents for the present and future.

In 2010 in England, a pastor was arrested for publicly claiming that homosexuality is a sin. "Police officers are alleging that he made the remark in a voice loud enough to be overheard by others and have charged him with using abusive or insulting language, contrary to the Public Order Act." This type of thing is happening in Canada as well.

Free speech is being superseded by false claims of hate speech.

Fact 7: Whether or not the president or government at large affirms or denies gay marriage as a civil right, this ultimately has no bearing on whether or not homosexuality is morally valid behavior. This line of reason is an appeal to authority and a logical fallacy.
 
Acts 5.29 records a situation which the local government made a rule that was contrary to a biblical mandate. What does scripture record was the response of the Apostles: "Peter and the other apostles replied: "We must obey God rather than human beings!" (Acts 5.29 NIV) Anyone who claims that Christians are always supposed to submit and follow all that the government says and does because of Romans 13 is simply is not versed in scripture.

Fact 8: This is a further clarification of Fact 2. There has been no concrete objective basis for LGBT "self identification" as a basis for requiring a civil right. The cause of African Americans in their struggle for equal civil rights is based on objective facts. For example, African Americans have dark skin. The LGBT rights movement ultimately does not rest on objective facts. Historically, civil rights are granted either for non-changeable circumstances or for reasons that will prove harmless to society. The gay rights movement cannot overcome logical arguments on either count.

Fact: 9  Does the push for LGBT civil rights have anything in common with the push for zoophilia rights and pedophilia rights? Absolutely. All three political movements are ultimately based on subjective feelings and desires. The "self identification" of LGBT people is based on subjective feelings and inclinations, regardless if these subjective inclinations and behaviors are drawn out over a greater part of a person's life.

Summary of Christian approach to gay rights: truth and love in Christ

In the Bible, The 10 Commandments are considered an example of truth. But the 10 Commandments could only go so far. In the Old Testament, Moses is a kind of example of the moral law. He could lead the people up to the edge of the promised land, but he could not bring them in. Joshua, the name from which we get Y'shua, or Jesus, symbolizes the saving grace of Christ that allows us to enter the 'promised land' based on the good things that God has for us. This example exemplifies how truth without love and grace is not enough for the human condition.

Another example of this necessary balance in scripture is outlined when a Christian church thought they were exemplifying God's love and grace by embracing a young man who was fornicating with his father's wife. The church believed that God's grace covered the incest and that it was not an issue. However, the Apostle Paul pointed out that it was a sin and that it should not be embraced.

In I Corinthians 5:1, Paul describes the issue. Paul spoke the truth in love, even though it may have been uncomfortable to do so: “It is actually reported that there is immorality among you, and immorality of such a kind as does not exist even among the Gentiles, that someone has his father’s wife.” Paul here emphasized that love without truth is not enough. While it is true that God is love and God offers grace, this does not discount the fact that there is an objective basis of morality and that diverting from this basis is something to seriously consider.
 
God's outline for sex and marriage is described by Jesus in Matthew 19.4-6: “Haven’t you read,” he replied, “that at the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female,’and said, ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh’? So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.”
 
To speak the truth in love is the example Christ and the early church have set out for Christians today. I am willing to reason with anyone who wishes to do so, who is able to do so in a civilized manner.

(updated 05/25/13)

Tags: gay rights, objective basis of morality, facts about gay rights, Paul and incest in church, Bill O'Reilly quote on gay marriage debate, extreme relativism is destructive to society, objective moral truth, PC politically correct force, quotes by Ben Carson on gay marriage

Related:

Christianity and Homosexuality: Embracing the Fulness of Christ

Vampire Author Rice Promotes Politically Correct God

Matt Moore: Homosexuality is Caused Mainly by Childhood Experiences

 

 

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  3. Rick, you've made some pretty serious errors here.

    Let's start with your list of "myths" and "facts":

    1) If you read the article you linked to, you'd see it did promote a biological basis -- just not a strictly genetic one. Saying "There is no 'gay gene'" and "It is not biologically determined" are not by any means the same thing. So, discriminating on the basis of orientation could easily be a discrimination on a biological basis -- just like racism.

    However, there is still no conclusive scientific evidence that supports the idea that people are born gay.

    To quote the very article you *linked to*:
    n The Quarterly Review of Biology, researchers at UC Santa Barbara and Uppsala University in Sweden have concluded through their research that sexual orientation can be decided through epi-marks, which are temporary switches in a fetus’ DNA that exist while in the womb and shortly after birth.

    "While in the womb and shortly after birth."

    2) We've been through this many times, Rick; distortions can be used to support most anything. If you want to cherry-pick research to support a Biblical worldview, you can -- of course, you're then misusing the methodology of science to support a pre-ordained conclusion.

    And, indeed, you go back and cite the discredited Regnerus study, whose methodology was flawed to produce exactly the results you are now citing here; a perfect example of the misuse of science to support pre-existing beliefs.

    You left a lot of questions about methodology unanswered in the post you cite; I encourage everyone to go and read the comments there.

    3) Citation for your claim that it is "like a pendulum". Considering that the social construction of homosexuality as we know it is of fairly recent vintage (read your Foucault), your argument here needs much more support than simple claims of it being a "fact".

    And, indeed, the article you link back to doesn't talk abotu sexual orientation in any significant fashion.


    4) The definition of "love" you use here is often in stark contrast to the definition most people would choose to use; when one of the influential figures in the evangelical Christian movement can claim that putting homosexuals to death would be "an act of mercy", this isn't "love" as most people would understand it.

    5) Whether this myth is true or not has nothing to do with the remainder of your argument -- you're trying to attribute a fallacy to your opponents, and then claim their reasoning is flawed.

    6) Citation, please. This is the same "Crying wolf" we've gotten over hate speech laws -- "If you pass hate speech laws, they'll arrest pastors in their pulpits!" Which simply hasn't happened.

    This is exactly parallel to claiming that passing civil rights legislation will cause people who believe in freedom of association, the basis of a free society, to be discriminated against tremendously.

    So far, all the "discrimination" we've seen coming out of gay marriage is that people no longer are allowed to pick and choose their clientele on the basis of orientation -- just as they haven't been allowed to do so on other grounds for a long time.

    If this is what you've got to oppose the compelling argument of Bill O'Reilly, then it's clear that he is proof that a stopped clock is right twice per day. ;)

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    1. Thanks for addressing Rick s idiocy. Personnaly, I had no strength in me left to point the same flaws in his reasoning as in his other articles. It is really depressing when someone is so vested in their belief that they ignore reality. Though, I guess I could chip in a few points.

      R:No 'gay gene' has been discovered and there is no strong evidence genetics plays a role.

      You DO know that no "heterosexual gene" has been discovered, don t you? Does that mean there is no evidence that sexual preferences have a genetic basis? I will answer that question for the mentally impaired - NO.

      As for the scientific studies just read wikipedia with dozens of studies, which DO confirm the link to genetics in sexual behavior:

      "Chromosome linkage studies of sexual orientation have indicated the presence of multiple contributing genetic factors throughout the genome. In 1993, Dean Hamer and colleagues published findings from a linkage analysis of a sample of 76 gay brothers and their families. Hamer et al. found that the gay men had more gay male uncles and cousins on the maternal side of the family than on the paternal side. Gay brothers who showed this maternal pedigree were then tested for X chromosome linkage, using twenty-two markers on the X chromosome to test for similar alleles. In another finding, thirty-three of the forty sibling pairs tested were found to have similar alleles in the distal region of Xq28, which was significantly higher than the expected rates of 50% for fraternal brothers. This was popularly dubbed as the "gay gene" in the media, causing significant controversy. Sanders et al. in 1998 reported on their similar study, in which they found that 13% of uncles of gay brothers on the maternal side were homosexual, compared to 6% on the paternal side.

      A later analysis by Hu et al. replicated and refined the earlier findings. This study revealed that 67% of gay brothers in a new saturated sample shared a marker on the X chromosome at Xq28. Although two other studies (Bailey et al., 1999; McKnight and Malcolm, 2000) failed to find a preponderance of gay relatives in the maternal line of homosexual men, One study by Rice et al. in 1999 failed to replicate the Xq28 linkage results. Meta-analysis of all available linkage data indicates a significant link to Xq28, but also indicates that additional genes must be present to account for the full heritability of sexual orientation.A recent study of 894 heterosexual and 694 homosexual men found no evidence of sex linkage.

      Mustanski et al. (2005) performed a full-genome scan (instead of just an X chromosome scan) on individuals and families previously reported on in Hamer et al. (1993) and Hu et al. (1995), as well as additional new subjects. With the larger sample set and complete genome scan, the study found somewhat reduced linkage for Xq28 than reported by Hamer. However, they did find other markers with a likelihood score falling just short of significance at 7q36 and likelihood scores approaching significance at 8p12 and 10q26. Interestingly, 10q26 showed highly significant maternal loading, thus further supporting the previous family studies.

      In July 2010 a group of geneticists at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science an Technology altered the sexual preferences of female mice by removing a single gene linked to reproductive behavior. Without the gene, the mice exhibited masculine sexual behavior and attraction toward urine of other female mice. Those mice who retained the gene fucose mutarotase (FucM) were attracted to male mice.

      In September 2011, Binbin Wang et al. followed up on the SHH gene[inconsistent], and a publish-ahead-of-print article was published in the Journal of Andrology showing positive results in a study that found statistically significant differences in allele types between 361 identified homosexual subjects and 319 heterosexual control subjects."

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Biology_and_sexual_orientation

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    2. R:Fact: Science, history, philosophy and psychology are realms in which the biblical view can be supported.

      Yep and like imnotandrei has noted, the same cherry picking can be done for any worldview. Be it racism, nazism or witchcraft...

      R:Fact: Historically, homosexuality has been a key issue that, like a pendulum, reflects general societal moral conditions.

      Fact: You are a clueless idiot, Rick. Homosexuality has always existed and has never been a serious problem for a society before. Example: Ancient Greece, that at the peak of its power had no problem with homosexuality.

      R:The biblical Christian view is based on loving all people, even when we disagree.

      Yes, you love people so much that you do not mind the majority of them being tortured in hell for eternity, including "evil" babies. That is the definition of looooove.

      R:Myth 5: If a majority of people believe something is right, then it must be right

      Are you speaking about yourself? Because the majority of religious people are against gay marriages and they do form the bulk of the world s population. Could you provide a citation from a gay right activist that uses such reasoning? If not, you prove yourself to be a liar as always.

      R:Fact: Discrimination against those who support strong family values, the basis of a strong society, will increase exponentially.

      Oh! The tragedy! Foundies will be forced by the authorities to acknowledge the rights of gay couples! It is like the discriminations of racists. Why should the racist owners of businesses be forced to serve racial minorities?

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    3. Imonandrei,

      You missed an important concluding point in the article:

      "I am willing to reason with anyone who wishes to do so, who is able to do so in a civilized manner."

      As documented in a previous post, you have been very, very uncivilized in your comments.

      http://templestream.blogspot.com/2013/02/slander-logic-and-venn-diagrams.html

      Nevertheless, seeing as there is no one else who seems interested in defending gay marriage, I'll engage a bit with you. But, this does not mean that I in any way feel obligated to do so again in the future.

      In your critique you offered a quote by a non-scientists who supposedly represented the opinion of the scientists. It's always better to go back to the original source for quotes, don't you agree? I've updated the article to further clarify this point:

      There are two important aspects to consider with this issue. One has to do with defining conclusive evidence and the other has to do with genetic transference. In December 2012, scientists basically agreed that there is no "gay gene." However, people are now presenting a new speculative theory as fact. Notice how the 'non-scientist makes the following claim:

      "Okay. I’m going to try to get through this science as best I can.

      In The Quarterly Review of Biology, researchers at UC Santa Barbara and Uppsala University in Sweden have concluded through their research that sexual orientation can be decided through epi-marks, which are temporary switches in a fetus’ DNA that exist while in the womb and shortly after birth."

      In his words, the co-author of the study, Sergey Gavrilets, does not claim this is conclusive evidence, but that it is the 'best explanation' so far:

      "Transmission of sexually antagonistic epi-marks between generations is the most plausible evolutionary mechanism of the phenomenon of human homosexuality."

      The second important point of the equation is to realize that the Bible does imply that sin has a transgenerational aspect with regard to the concept of sowing and reaping. Exodus 20.5 states,

      "You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me." (NIV) In Romans 1.24, Paul states, "Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another."

      Some have interpreted this to mean that people committed to homosexuality do undergo some type of codifying physical change. Could there be a slight genetic change, a signature acquired when people repeatedly practice homosexual acts? These discoveries in epigenetics and epi-marks could be confirming this biblical theory. All the gay friends and acquaintances I have, who have taken time to open up and confide in me, have explained that they had either been molested or exposed to extremely age-inappropriate material and experiences at very young ages.

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    4. Part 2


      >I encourage everyone to go and read the comments there.

      - So tiring to have to point out for the umteenth time that blanket comments without specific links are useless.

      >Considering that the social construction of homosexuality as we know it is of fairly recent vintage (read your Foucault),

      - Do summarize how our recent fashionable understanding of homosexuality offers a foundation difference.

      >The definition of "love" you use here is often in stark contrast to the definition most people would choose to use; when one of the influential figures in the evangelical Christian movement can claim that putting homosexuals to death would be "an act of mercy",

      - You love to beat dead horses, don't you. I guess I can understand we do have a different understanding of what love means. Of course, one person completely ignoring vast portions of foundational core text is an excellent example of that core belief.

      >"If you pass hate speech laws, they'll arrest pastors in their pulpits!" Which simply hasn't happened.

      - I offered an example of a boy in school in the article. Plus the following with links in the article:

      In 2010 in England, a pastor was arrested for publicly claiming that homosexuality is a sin. This type of thing has happened in Sweden and Canada. Free speech is being superseded by false claims of hate speech.

      Please, if there is anyone out there who is civilized and willing to offer some reasonable arguments, you are welcome to appear and comment at any time.

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  4. Imonandrei,

    You missed an important concluding point in the article:

    "I am willing to reason with anyone who wishes to do so, who is able to do so in a civilized manner."


    I wish to do so, and am perfectly capable of doing so; indeed, I am doing so now. I did not miss this point.

    But, this does not mean that I in any way feel obligated to do so again in the future.

    I can't help it; just as Dawkins isn't obligated to engage with Craig. ;)

    It is worth noting before going further that you did a major rewrite on your article since I posted my first comment; this may explain some inconsistencies. (Large enough that you changed the order of your "myths", among other things -- should anyone read this and be confused by my initial responses' sequence.

    In your critique you offered a quote by a non-scientists who supposedly represented the opinion of the scientists.

    In your initial post, you offered that article as evidence for your point; I indicated why it was not, quoting from your source.

    Also, if you read my initial response, I argued, and maintain, that "genetically transferred" and "biologically determined" are not the same thing -- and arguments in favor of discrimination against a biologically determined trait are just as malignant.

    The second important point of the equation is to realize that the Bible does imply that sin has a transgenerational aspect with regard to the concept of sowing and reaping.

    I cite back to you Ezekiel 18:2-18:20. Which is part of the problem of using the Bible as a so-called "objective" source; it can be cited to support contradictory positions very easily, and there is no objective hermeneutic.

    All the gay friends and acquaintances I have, who have taken time to open up and confide in me, have explained that they had either been molested or exposed to extremely age-inappropriate material and experiences at very young ages.

    This statement does not hold true in my experience, and I suspect I have a much larger sphere of said. These are anecdotes, not data.

    Did it ever occur to you that the people who have taken that time might be a self-selected group?

    - So tiring to have to point out for the umteenth time that blanket comments without specific links are useless.

    That's because I want people to read the whole discussion, Rick, not just certain comments. The "specific link" was your original link to the article, as cited. If you need it again:
    http://templestream.blogspot.com/2012/07/studies-show-traditional-families-offer.html

    - Do summarize how our recent fashionable understanding of homosexuality offers a foundation difference.

    If, as Foucault suggested, "homosexuality" is a recently-constructed concept, (as indeed is sexual orientation, as opposed to sexual *practice*) then citing ancient texts and interpreting them to opine upon the subject is a process fraught with difficulty, at the very least. It also drastically undercuts the notion of it being involved in some sort of "cyclical history".

    I notice that you changed your claim in the article, watering it down to a general one of cyclical nature, rather than one having anything specific to do with homosexuality, without acknowledgment.


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  5. Could you please explain to me how you square your myth and fact number one with Leviticus 20:13? After reading that passage I can just feel the love.

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    1. As a side note; I notice Rick used to clear up the spam on this site, but not any more; makes me wonder if his heart isn't in it, or if he's using it to try and clear comments he doesn't like out of his "recent comments" listing.

      And don't you know, Justin, that it's loving to threaten people with death so they stop sinning? ;)

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    2. Hey there Steve. With love like that I think I know who my mortal enemies are. That kind of pretzel logic reminds me of Orwellian newspeak. Yes killing in the name of love is doubleplusgood! Oh and yes I agree Rick needs to clean up his blog, those kind of shameless spammers would be deleted off of my blog the second I became aware of them.

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    3. Cute Steve,that got a chuckle. Just to let you know I am working on a lengthy rebuttal to Mr Warden's nonsense which I will be posting over on my blog. I'll let you know when I am done.

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    4. Justin,

      >Could you please explain to me how you square your myth and fact number one with Leviticus 20:13? After reading that passage I can just feel the love.

      You have made a good point that the focus in the Old Testament is more on justice than on good feeings. It is in Christ that grace and truth are complete, unified and balanced.

      People will often point to the Old Testament and then say that all who believe the Bible must hate gays because homesexialuty is listed as a capital offense in verses such as Leviticus 20:13. This is false logic for a couple of reasons. Firstly, the fact that something is listed as a capital offense does not suggest any emotional qualifications, such as hatrred.

      Secondly, verses pulled from the book of Leviticus outline a different dispensation of time. The present dispensation of time does not reflect this legalistic religious code. John 1.17 outlines, "For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ." In grace and truth there is no hatred.

      > Just to let you know I am working on a lengthy rebuttal to Mr Warden's nonsense which I will be posting over on my blog. I'll let you know when I am done.

      - Justin, I will be adding a few key points to the article in the next few days, such as the following:

      Consider, for example, if bisuality and bisexual marriage are considered civil rights. If bisecual marriage is civil right as a precedent, then poligamy will be the next logical right. After all, a bisexual will have a right to sexual fulfilment and that would actual entail the possible union of four different people in marriage. One sexual preference takes the place of bioleogical gender in marriage, then, ultimately, a precedent has been set for any form of sexual preference to be a civil right, whether pedophilia or bestiality or another version.

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    5. I'd only add your "key point" if you want to look foolish.

      You fail to recognize a major difference between "same-sex marriage" and "bisexual marriage" -- a construction I have not seen before you appear to have dreamt it up. And you know it.

      Just as there is a clear and obvious difference between same-sex marriage and other precedents you claim have been set -- it's called "consent", and we have standards about that.

      By this same "logic", we could argue that if Christianity is given permission to practice in public, then *any* religion has to be protected, and a precedent has been set for human sacrifices in the public square, since we allow Christians to preach there, with permits.

      It's the same reasoning, Rick.

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    6. Rick you have made three points. First, condemning a person to death does not automatically mean hatred for the person. While technically true I think the distinction would be lost on the poor homosexual put to death before Jesus or up until quit recently in fact. Second you make the claim I have often heard that the old laws no longer apply after Jesus. While this may be biblically correct, I can not say as I am not a bible scholar. I can say that Christians seem to do a lot of pick and choose when it comes to the old testament. Using it when it is politically expedient and ignoring it when it is not. If you say the old punishments no longer apply I will hold you to this standard and a good thing to if you are in the practice of wearing mixed fibers. Third you equate bisexuality with polygamy, pedophilia and bestiality. You are basically making a slippery slope fallacy here. As Steve has pointed out there is a difference and it is not of degree but of kind that will arrest that slide down the slope. That difference being consent. Children can not give it. Animals can not enter into legally binding contracts. As for polygamy or polyandry for that matter I have no problem with it. What consenting adults do that had no direct impact on me is not my concern.

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    7. Justin,

      >I think the distinction would be lost on the poor homosexual put to death before Jesus

      - Citation please. No homosexual was "put to death before Jesus" in scripture.

      Like many secular academic critics, you seem to be misguided on both the content and proper interpretation of scripture, especially with regard to important Old and New Testament differences.

      > I can say that Christians seem to do a lot of pick and choose when it comes to the old testament.

      - The Old Testament foreshadowed Christ the Messiah and His perfect grace and truth. There are scriptures that outline this:

      "The law is only a shadow of the good things that are coming--not the realities themselves." Hebrews 10.1

      >Using it when it is politically expedient and ignoring it when it is not.

      - Believe me, it would be much more expedient for me and other Christians to go along with the flow and condone homosexuality. But, the fact is, it remains a clearly defined sin in both the Old and New Testaments.

      >Third you equate bisexuality with polygamy, pedophilia and bestiality.

      - No, I don't equate them. I outline that bisexiality has no biological "genetic identity" whatsoever in accordance with the sceintific definition of gender and is based on sexual preference alone. Because this supposed "civil right" is based on sexual preference alone then it helps to set a precedent for bestiality and pedophilia. I realize the aspect of consent is still a live issue.

      Do you believe that bisexual "gender identity" is objectively based on anything other than personal sexual preferences? Do explain.

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    8. R:Citation please. No homosexual was "put to death before Jesus" in scripture.

      1) “For truly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass the law until all is accomplished. Whoever then relaxes one of the least of these commandments and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but he who does them and teaches them shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 5:18-19 RSV) (Clearly the Old Testament is to be abided by until the end of human existence itself. None other then Jesus said so.)

      2) All of the vicious Old Testament laws will be binding forever. "It is easier for Heaven and Earth to pass away than for the smallest part of the letter of the law to become invalid." (Luke 16:17 NAB)

      3) Jesus strongly approves of the law and the prophets. He hasn’t the slightest objection to the cruelties of the Old Testament. "Do not think that I have come to abolish the law or the prophets. I have come not to abolish but to fulfill. Amen, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest part or the smallest part of a letter will pass from the law, until all things have taken place." (Matthew 5:17 NAB)

      3b) "All scripture is inspired by God and is useful for teaching, for refutation, for correction, and for training in righteousness..." (2 Timothy 3:16 NAB)

      3c) "Know this first of all, that there is no prophecy of scripture that is a matter of personal interpretation, for no prophecy ever came through human will; but rather human beings moved by the holy Spirit spoke under the influence of God." (2 Peter 20-21 NAB)

      4) Jesus criticizes the Jews for not killing their disobedient children according to Old Testament law. Mark.7:9-13 "Whoever curses father or mother shall die" (Mark 7:10 NAB)

      5) Jesus is criticized by the Pharisees for not washing his hands before eating. He defends himself by attacking them for not killing disobedient children according to the commandment: “He that curseth father or mother, let him die the death.” (Matthew 15:4-7)

      6) Jesus has a punishment even worse than his father concerning adultery: God said the act of adultery was punishable by death. Jesus says looking with lust is the same thing and you should gouge your eye out, better a part, than the whole. The punishment under Jesus is an eternity in Hell. (Matthew 5:27)

      7) Peter says that all slaves should “be subject to [their] masters with all fear,” to the bad and cruel as well as the “good and gentle.” (This is merely an echo of the same slavery commands in the Old Testament.) 1 Peter 2:18

      8) “Did not Moses give you the law, and yet none of you keepeth the law" (John7:19) and “For the law was given by Moses,..." (John 1:17).

      9) “...the scripture cannot be broken.” --Jesus Christ, John 10:35

      http://www.evilbible.com/do_not_ignore_ot.htm

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    9. So yes.... Apparently "perfect grace and truth" does not cancel out the need to put homosexuals and rape victims to death.

      P.S. And you still fail to answer the million dollar question that was asked to you multiple times. What makes your interpretention of the bible the right one and not Luther s for example?

      R:The Old Testament foreshadowed Christ the Messiah and His perfect grace and truth. There are scriptures that outline this

      Nice assertion here. So why is the stop point the first coming of Jesus and not the apocalypse? Why do you think this verse is not speaking about heaven?

      R:No, I don't equate them. I outline that bisexiality has no biological "genetic identity" whatsoever in accordance with the sceintific definition of gender and is based on sexual preference alone.

      Yep, still a nucklehead, Rick. Let us ignore the dozens of studies that were pointed out to you... And let us also ignore the fallacy of the slippery slop that was explained at least twice.

      R:Do you believe that bisexual "gender identity" is objectively based on anything other than personal sexual preferences? Do explain.

      And for the mentally retarded I will have to clarify. Yes, there is no single "gay gene", because homosexuality is caused at least by a COMBINATION OF GENES and biological influence in the womb like hormonal levels. IT IS NOT A CHOICE.

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    10. More to follow, but I just want to point out now that Rick doesn't seem to understand the difference between a "gender identity" (male, female, trans, genderqueer, etc.) and a "sexual orientation". Perhaps a bit of clarity in your terms might help clarify your thinking, Rick.

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    11. Anonymous,

      >Apparently "perfect grace and truth" does not cancel out the need to put homosexuals and rape victims to death.

      Oh, but it does. A woman caught in the act of adultery was placed before Jesus for punishment of death. Did Jesus command her to be killed as the law demands? No, as noted in John 7-8.

      Jesus says to her, "Neither do I condemn you. Go, and from now on no longer sin" (8:11).

      http://www.biblegateway.com/resources/commentaries/IVP-NT/John/Jesus-Forgives-Woman-Taken

      All the examples you have presented, Anonymous are "before Jesus" time-wise on earth. When sinners were placed before Jesus on earth, there is quite a different situation isn't there?

      Perfect grace and truth in Christ do cancel out the need for exacting punishment on earth.

      Because God is holy and his justice is righteous, all sin must be addressed. Because God is gracious and merciful, God made a way to have all of our sins forgiven through the atonement of Christ on the cross. It's free to any and all who will receive it.

      Perfect justice. Perfect grace. Perfect love.

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    12. Steve I wonder if Mr Warden is aware of several correlative studies done between homosexual and bisexual behavior and physicality traits. Examples include

      1. In the general population a counter clockwise hair pattern (cow lick) runs about 8% but within the homosexual population it runs at 23%, nearly three times higher then in the general population.

      2. In the general population left handedness runs about 10% but amongst homosexuals and bisexuals it is 38% higher.

      3. In the general population only 14% of the male population has denser finger prints on the left hand while amongst homosexuals and bisexuals it is 30%.

      4. Men have shorter index fingers compared to their ring fingers while for women they tend to be of equal length. Lesbian women however tend to have the shorter index finger pattern of men.



      These correlations just scream out for an explanation and whatever it is it wont be a matter of choice. Finger prints are not determined by genes and are not a matter choice either. I'll answer Rick when I have more time.

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    13. Anonymous,

      >Yes, there is no single "gay gene", because homosexuality is caused at least by a COMBINATION OF GENES and biological influence in the womb like hormonal levels. IT IS NOT A CHOICE.

      - Oh, the gay lifestyle is found in the "combination of genes..." - why does that NOT sound very scientific?

      The above article addresses the great hope of epi-genetics and the fact that being a little more effeminate does not necessarily correspond with gay sex and the civil right of gay marriage.

      If you have any cogent scientific facts to offer on this theme, please do.

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    14. Because God is holy and his justice is righteous, all sin must be addressed. Because God is gracious and merciful, God made a way to have all of our sins forgiven through the atonement of Christ on the cross. It's free to any and all who will receive it.

      Provided they obey whichever set of rules God allegedly provides. Now, which rules those are no one has been able to prove, and so we have no way to know whether we're obeying them -- after all, we can't trust our own senses of love, because they might lead us to love the wrong person. We can't trust what other people tell us, because they might mislead us. We can't trust the voice in our heads, because it might be wrong.

      I don't think it qualifies as "perfect love" when it's conditional, and when it's not comprehensible.

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    15. R:Oh, but it does. A woman caught in the act of adultery was placed before Jesus for punishment of death

      Unfortunately, you are not the almighty slave-owner Jesus, Rick. By your own standard, Jesus is the supreme tyrant and law maker that can whimsically change laws or grant pardon to his slaves.

      So good law-abiding christians still need to kill homosexuals and rape victims. At least until the end of times.

      R:All the examples you have presented, Anonymous are "before Jesus" time-wise on earth.

      Good job with your reading disability, Rick. Let us ignore half of those quotes from Jesus himself.

      R:Perfect grace and truth in Christ do cancel out the need for exacting punishment on earth.

      Any quotes to back up that assertion? Any explanations for the dozens of quotes from the Bible that state the contrary?

      Or maybe just the explanation of the following quote: "Do not think that I have come to abolish the law or the prophets. I have come not to abolish but to fulfill. Amen, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest part or the smallest part of a letter will pass from the law, until all things have taken place." (Matthew 5:17 NAB)

      R:Because God is holy and his justice is righteous, all sin must be addressed. Because God is gracious and merciful, God made a way to have all of our sins forgiven through the atonement of Christ on the cross

      Yes, thank you for proving your moral bancruptcy again. You have no problem with someone else paying for your sins, Rick.

      R:Oh, the gay lifestyle is found in the "combination of genes..." - why does that NOT sound very scientific?

      Because you are an idiot that has no understanding whatsoever of science. What the fuck do you even mean by "gay lifestyle" being determined by genes in the first place?

      Let me spell it out to you. Being homosexual means that you are attracted to your OWN gender. It means sometimes having an erection when you see someone you really like or when you phantasise about that person. One is born like that because of a combination of genes and biological factors.

      That is it. Now you can choose to be miserable all your life and repress that sexuality that nobody should care about or you could lead a normal life with the person you love. Full stop.

      R:If you have any cogent scientific facts to offer on this theme, please do.

      Me and others have already done so. It is your own problem that you choose to ignore those studies.

      I:I don't think it qualifies as "perfect love" when it's conditional, and when it's not comprehensible.

      No, it is perfect LOVE. You can do whatever you want. You can kill, rape, steal or even conduct genocide. As long as you repent, you will go to heaven and your victims, who did not accept Jesus will be tortutred in hell 8)

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    16. R:Jesus says to her, "Neither do I condemn you. Go, and from now on no longer sin" (8:11).

      P.S. From your own source, Rick:

      "This story, beloved for its revelation of God's mercy toward sinners, is found only in John. It was almost certainly not part of John's original Gospel. The NIV separates this passage off from the rest of the Gospel with the note, "The earliest and most reliable manuscripts and other ancient witnesses do not have John 7:53--8:11." That is, the earliest Greek manuscripts, the earliest translations and the earliest church fathers all lack reference to this story."

      Conclusion: you are talking aboout a forgery, a later on addition that has nothing to do with the original. Thank you for proving once again your dishonesty.

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    17. It's worth noting that the ....misguided souls over at the Conservapedia, IIRC, are trying to edit that passage out of their "corrected" Bible, as a forgery and therefore not to be followed.

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    18. Anonymous,

      >So why is the stop point the first coming of Jesus and not the apocalypse?

      - The first coming of Christ signifies the initiation of the establishment of Christ's spiritual kingdom on earth even as Jesus is seen as the first man "born of the spirit" born of many brothers outlined in Romans 8.29.

      http://bible.cc/romans/8-29.htm

      The second coming refers to the final and ultimate dominion of Christ on earth.

      >What makes your interpretention of the bible the right one and not Luther s for example?

      - Do show a single quote where Luther defends the killing of homosexuals in his time period or any New Testament justification of such.

      >homosexuality is caused at least by a COMBINATION OF GENES and biological influence in the womb like hormonal levels. IT IS NOT A CHOICE.

      - Hmmm. Your all-caps comments may seem very authoratative to some, kind of like Bill O'Reilly shouting at opponents on prime time TV, but, nonetheless, a secular study documents how forty-six percent of the homosexual men in the analysis reported homosexual molestation while only seven percent of the heteros reported childhood molestation. That's a 39 percent spread and, by the way, a lot more direct of a correllation than studies of gay finger prints and hair patternns.

      http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed?uid=11501300&cmd=showdetailview&indexed=google

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    19. - As far as the Bible verse in John is concerned, there are other NT passages that basically offer the same message. Take, for example, Luke 7:

      Jesus Anointed by a Sinful Woman

      36 When one of the Pharisees invited Jesus to have dinner with him, he went to the Pharisee’s house and reclined at the table. 37 A woman in that town who lived a sinful life learned that Jesus was eating at the Pharisee’s house, so she came there with an alabaster jar of perfume. 38 As she stood behind him at his feet weeping, she began to wet his feet with her tears. Then she wiped them with her hair, kissed them and poured perfume on them."

      The sinful woman was most likely a prostitute who had a habit of committing adultery with men in town. Did Jesus condemn the prostitute or "hate her" in the way that many gay supporters clam that Christians hate gays? No, Jesus did not condemn or express hatred.

      So, even if you ignore the passage in John I mentioned, there are other examples. No hate crime. No Christian gay bashing in the NT. Just the message of truth and love.

      Delete

    20. >What makes your interpretention of the bible the right one and not Luther s for example?

      - Do show a single quote where Luther defends the killing of homosexuals in his time period or any New Testament justification of such.


      Are you being willfully ignorant, or are you honestly forgetting that (if this is the same Anonymous, as I suspect it is) Anonymous, you, and I went around and around on whether Luther could qualify as a "true Christian" because of his clearly documented anti-Semitism.

      However: "The Carthusian monks deserve to be hated because they were the first to bring this terrible pollution into Germany from the monasteries of Italy. (Luther’s Works, Vol. 3, 251-252)" That's hatred for sodomites, right there, in his own words.

      No Christian gay bashing in the NT. Just the message of truth and love.

      So, again -- you are prepared to argue that someone arguing that it is better for homosexuals to die than continue being gay is not a true Christian?

      nonetheless, a secular study documents how forty-six percent of the homosexual men in the analysis reported homosexual molestation while only seven percent of the heteros reported childhood molestation.

      Actually, here's the relevant quote:

      Forty-six percent of the homosexual men in contrast to 7% of the heterosexual men reported homosexual molestation.

      You dropped a word, and it's a significant one. Without similar figures for "heterosexual molestation" on both populations, you can't draw any conclusions. Welcome back to Social Science 101.

      Delete
    21. Good job, Rick. You ignored half of my points. You are the champion of reading disability!

      R:The first coming of Christ signifies the initiation of the establishment of Christ's spiritual kingdom on earth even as Jesus is seen as the first man "born of the spirit" born of many brothers outlined in Romans 8.29.

      Sorry, failed again. You need to prove that "the good things" are not part of the promise of heaven. Not that the coming of Jesus signifies the establishment of a "spiritual kingdom".

      R:Do show a single quote where Luther defends the killing of homosexuals in his time period or any New Testament justification of such.

      Imnotandrei has just dealt with that point.

      R:Hmmm. Your all-caps comments may seem very authoratative to some...

      I believe I told you at least a dozen of times, Rick. Remember how you were unable to understand how combatant and non-combatant victims in the war in Lybia during the 1920s were grouped together? You have a reding disability and the only thing that seems to work on you at least a little is highlighting the important points.

      R:That's a 39 percent spread and, by the way, a lot more direct of a correllation than studies of gay finger prints and hair patternns.

      Whoa! Good job with the confirmation biase. At most that study can prove is that sexual trauma can be ONE the numerous factors in play here. Mind also that molestion victims are a minority even in the gay community.

      And since 39% seems to be enough of a correlation for you, than the 60% and 70% correlation rate in genetics must mean you agree that people are born gay and not made gay.

      R:As far as the Bible verse in John is concerned, there are other NT passages that basically offer the same message

      Isn it ironic how you venemantly denied that the bible was edited and now that you have the proof in front of your eyes you just skip it like it is a minor detail?

      R:Did Jesus condemn the prostitute or "hate her" in the way that many gay supporters clam that Christians hate gays?

      Sorry, it seems you fail again. Jesus is the supreme dictator that can do whatever he wants. We are speaking about Christians and about how the are supposed to behave. So good law-abiding Christians still need to kill homosexuals and rape victims. At least until the end of times as Jesus has instructed.

      Delete
    22. P.P.S. And what is funny is that your study does prove the stance of your opponents. That homosexuality is not a deliberate choice. Unless you are going to claim that the people in the study did "choose" to be molested.

      Delete
    23. P.S. Your assertion that homosexuality is a conscious choice is also defeated by the fact that the phenomena is quite prevelant among animals. Or are you going to argue that a sheep makes a conscious choice to lead "a gay lifestyle"?

      Delete
    24. Anon,

      >Do show a single quote where Luther defends the killing of homosexuals in his time period or any New Testament justification of such.

      - Examples offered: None. Yawn. Straw man examples are so passe.

      Getting back to the subject at hand, it was the old guard Jewish establishment that wanted to continue the enforcement of the letter of the OT law and Christ was an extreme threat to them because he was offering a new and different covenant. It is called a "New Testament" for a reason, by the way. This was foretold in Jeremiah:

      "Behold, the days are coming, declares the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and the house of Judah...For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, declares the Lord: I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts...And no longer shall each one teach his neighbor and each his brother, saying, ‘Know the Lord,’ for they shall all know me, from the least of them to the greatest, declares the Lord. For I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more."

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_Covenant

      This basically predicts that a new covenant will be established that offers a reinterpretation of The Law, of holiness, of forgiveness, based on grace and knowing God personally, not by obeying strict rules. This is the essence of what Jesus brought in his first coming. Do you deny that these are the kinds of principles Jesus taught?

      Your diatribe about Luther is nothing but a straw man argument and you really should try to address the very basic and fundamental precepts of the New Testament if you want to try and make a case that Christians are supposed to hate and kill homosexuals.

      Delete
    25. R:Examples offered: None. Yawn. Straw man examples are so passe.

      Denial is not a river in Egypt. Good luck in lalala land.

      R:Getting back to the subject at hand, it was the old guard Jewish establishment that wanted to continue the enforcement of the letter of the OT

      Good job with ignoring the elephant in the room.

      “For truly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass the law until all is accomplished. Whoever then relaxes one of the least of these commandments and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but he who does them and teaches them shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 5:18-19 RSV)

      R:It is called a "New Testament" for a reason, by the way. This was foretold in Jeremiah:

      And where does it says that the laws from the OT is no longer in place? The fact that people will "know" there is a god for sure and "know" the laws has no bearing on the content of biblical laws

      R:This basically predicts that a new covenant will be established that offers a reinterpretation of The Law

      Again...Where does it says the laws are reinterpreted?

      "Do not think that I have come to abolish the law or the prophets. I have come not to abolish but to fulfill. Amen, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest part or the smallest part of a letter will pass from the law, until all things have taken place." (Matthew 5:17 NAB)

      So how are you going to reinterpret the laws if not even a letter or a dot can be changed? 8)

      R:if you want to try and make a case that Christians are supposed to hate and kill homosexuals.

      No one is claiming that Christians should hate homosexuals. It is your own little paranoic delusions, Rick. What I am saying is that as a christian you are supposed to live by the laws of god, which includes things like killing homosexuals.

      Delete
    26. Some more science as opposed to more of the wishing makes it so mentality of the authoritarian's mindset.

      Researchers at the Karolinska institute in Sweden back in 2005 discovered using PET scans that the brains of homosexual and heterosexual men respond differently to pheromones. This was a 100% correlation within the group studied. But I suppose Rick will say how my hypothalamus neurons fire in response to chemicals some of which I cant even consciously detect is a matter of choice.

      http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/news/health/2005-05-09-homosexual-brains_x.htm?csp=34

      http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1399762/posts

      http://www.macalester.edu/psychology/whathap/UBNRP/pheromone10/human%20pheromones.html

      Delete
    27. >Do show a single quote where Luther defends the killing of homosexuals in his time period or any New Testament justification of such.

      - Examples offered: None. Yawn. Straw man examples are so passe.


      Considering that your requested quotes are irrelevant to what I believe is his point -- that why should we accept your view of "Christianity" as authoritative as opposed to Luther's, who clearly hated homosexuality (as well as Jews) -- and, indeed, why you refuse to disown Luther while claiming to disown his views -- there's no reason he should provide examples. I gave you one that demonstrated clearly that Luther felt sodomites were worthy of hatred.

      I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts...And no longer shall each one teach his neighbor and each his brother, saying, ‘Know the Lord,’ for they shall all know me, from the least of them to the greatest, declares the Lord. For I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more."

      And to a Jewish point of view, that prophecy involves a knowledge of the Law in the heart of all people; this is different than what you claim the meaning is. And, again, no authoritative way to determine which interpretation is true -- at least, none you've ever presented.

      This is the essence of what Jesus brought in his first coming. Do you deny that these are the kinds of principles Jesus taught?

      I think that it's one interpretation. Of course, as has been cited repeatedly in this thread, he is also reported as saying he was here to complete, not reduce, the law. So, multiple ways of interpreting it, again.

      Delete
    28. Be careful, imnotandrei. I think you have just short-circuited Rick. Offering controversial verses from his holy book is dangerous as he ends up in lala land. 8)

      Delete
    29. Steve,

      >Some more science as opposed to more of the wishing makes it so mentality of the authoritarian's mindset.

      Researchers at the Karolinska institute in Sweden back in 2005 discovered using PET scans that the brains of homosexual and heterosexual men respond differently to pheromones...

      - Kerby Anderson addresses physiological differences as the 'chicken and the egg' type questions:

      "When there is a difference in brain structure, is the difference the result of sexual orientation or is it the cause of sexual orientation? Researchers, for example, have found that when people who become blind begin to learn Braille, the area of the brain controlling the reading finger actual grows larger."

      I refer you back to these facts:

      In contrast to these types of genetic studies, other studies suggest that child molestation is a major factor influencing people to adopt a homosexual lifestyle. The California School of Professional Psychology published findings in a report entitled, "Comparative data of childhood and adolescence molestation in heterosexual and homosexual persons" and the abstract states, "In research with 942 nonclinical adult participants, gay men and lesbian women reported a significantly higher rate of childhood molestation than did heterosexual men and women." 7% of the heterosexual men reported molestation, 22% of the lesbian women reported molestation and a whopping 46% of the gay men reported molestation. These types of high statistics ring true with the accounts of gay friends and acquaintances of mine who have confided in me that they were either molested or had some extremely age-inappropriate experiences that influenced them towards becoming gay. Ellen DeGeneres has been able to describe her molestation as a teenager in public interviews.

      Delete
    30. Anon,

      >what is funny is that your study does prove the stance of your opponents. That homosexuality is not a deliberate choice.

      - Once homosexuality is defined as to differentiate between sexual attraction and sexual acts, then the points in the article are clear and logical. I've updated the article with this distinction:

      "William Lane Craig raised a hypothetical example, people may be born with addictive traits and find they have a compelling inclination to binge on alcohol. Just because there is this addictive trait, does that mean that addiction to drugs and alcohol are morally acceptable or desirable? No, it does not. And a person has a choice to restrain inclinations that are immoral."

      Delete
    31. Some antagonists will claim, "That is your interpretation of scripture. How do you know you are right? The Bible says 'kill homosexuals' so you should kill and hate, that's what you believe today."

      When critics make this claim, simply point the differentiation of the Old Testament and New Testament as described in scripture. This subject is referred to as supersessionism.

      Because there are so many heretical professors and theologians today, go back to the original source and recorded history. Where are the supposed examples in the New Testament that could possibly justify the hatred or killing of gays? There are none.

      No. What you will find is that supercessionism is expressed in scripture and has been the mainstream Christian interpretation of the New Testament since the inception of all three main historical traditions within Christianity — Orthodox, Catholic and Protestant. Therefore, the antagonist has the burden of proof in making the claim that Christians should hate and kill gays. Prominent theologians such as C.S. Lewis and William Lane Craig have confirmed the New Testament view advocates truth and love when dealing with this subject.

      Delete
    32. R:Once homosexuality is defined as to differentiate between sexual attraction and sexual acts, then the points in the article are clear and logical.

      And you need to prove that homosexuality is somehow harmful. So far it is a big fat failure on your part. The only thing you have is the faulty Regnerus study from broken homes.

      R:Therefore, the antagonist has the burden of proof in making the claim that Christians should hate and kill gays

      How is the weather in lala land? Are you still going to do your best to ignore any contradicting evidence offered? Let us try again and see how you deal with the elephant this time.

      “For truly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass the law until all is accomplished. Whoever then relaxes one of the least of these commandments and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but he who does them and teaches them shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 5:18-19 RSV)

      And now here is an example of a biblical law of which not a letter or even a dot can be changed until the end of times:

      "If a man also lie with mankind, as he lies with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be on them." (Leviticus 20:13)

      Do you need someone to connect the dots, Rick?

      R:What you will find is that supercessionism is expressed in scripture and has been the mainstream Christian interpretation of the New Testament...

      Fallacy ad populum anyone? And you still need to prove it is clearly expressed in scripture. So far you failed to do so.

      Delete
    33. Wow. Quite a mess. To start with:

      Steve

      I believe, if you look, you're quoting Justin here. It's really amusing that you refuse to engage with me, until, when you do, you engage with the wrong person.

      Researchers at the Karolinska institute in Sweden back in 2005 discovered using PET scans that the brains of homosexual and heterosexual men respond differently to pheromones...

      THis is a far more "objective" phenomenon than, say, one's particular breed of religious belief, yet you claim:

      Because LGBT rights are actually based on sexual preference, not biological characteristics, then a precedent is set for other "civil rights" based on subjective feelings and sexual desires alone.

      If you want to restrict civil rights to purely biological distinctions, then you have to abandon support for religious claims of "discrimination". After all, it's just a choice.

      7% of the heterosexual men reported molestation, 22% of the lesbian women reported molestation and a whopping 46% of the gay men reported molestation.

      This is the same study you reported before, and you're ignoring what I said, and conflating "homosexual molestation" with "molestation". No wonder you don't provide a link, since you're manipulating the data, whether due to dishonesty or incapacity.

      These types of high statistics ring true with the accounts of gay friends and acquaintances of mine who have confided in me that they were either molested or had some extremely age-inappropriate experiences that influenced them towards becoming gay.

      Once again, you claim your anecdotes as data. Furthermore, if I said "Most of the religious friends of mine confide in me that someone pressured them very hard, when they were young, to be the religion they are now", would that be a justification to discriminate against them based on religion?

      Once homosexuality is defined as to differentiate between sexual attraction and sexual acts,

      Once religion is defined as to differentiate between religious beliefs and religious practices....

      Getting the parallel here?

      Therefore, the antagonist has the burden of proof in making the claim that Christians should hate and kill gays. Prominent theologians such as C.S. Lewis and William Lane Craig have confirmed the New Testament view advocates truth and love when dealing with this subject.

      And prominent theologians such as Martin Luther and R.J. Rushdoony claim that hating gays is correct, and Tim LaHaye asserted that killing them would be more merciful than letting them live. *This* is the point you're trying to avoid with your willful failure to understand, and dragging in supercessionism to cloud the issue.

      If you don't believe that you should hate gays, great. (though you certainly have beliefs and attitudes that harm them, whether or not you think your motives are pure.) But don't try and argue that you're following some objective and clear fact, when so many of your co-religionists, whom you refuse to disavow, disagree with you.

      Delete
    34. Secular neophyte Bible critics believe they understand the meaning of scripture better than Christians who have studied scripture for a better part of their lives.

      Outline of basic Christian supersessionism

      1. Orthodox, Catholic and Protestant traditions embrace the doctrine of basic supersessionism.
      2. The New Testament is based on a new covenant.
      3. The new covenant is supersedes the old covenant.
      4. The new covenant emphasizes grace over the law.
      5. The new covenant emphasizes changed relationships and attitudes with God and among fellow citizens.
      6. These changed attitudes reflect proactive love-based ethics over vindictive law-based ethics, as outlined by Christ in the Sermon on the Mount, the introduction of the New Testament.

      Because there are so many heretical professors and theologians today, it's best to go back to the original source and recorded history. Where are the supposed examples in the New Testament that could possibly justify the hatred or killing of gays? There are none. What you find is that Jesus himself, in his first sermon, has outlined the basics of supersessionism, which set the tone for the entire New Testament and all other examples of New Testament ethics.

      Old Testament ethics are based upon legalism: "Eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot," (Exodus 21.24, KJV) Jesus offered "You have heard that it was said, ‘Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.' But I tell you, do not resist an evil person. If anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to them the other cheek also." Jesus was offering a new, non-violent, non-vindictive approach. This pattern of love over law' is noted throughout that chapter and throughout the New Testament.

      Therefore, the antagonist has the burden of proof in making the claim that Christians should hate and kill gays.

      So far, nothing of any substance has been offered in the comments of this thread to support this idea in any serious manner.

      Delete
    35. Jesus explained that love and grace do not nullify the law (Matthew 5. 17) but fulfill it by offering a better way of meeting its requirements. There is still an objective basis of right and wrong. As opposed to hatred and killing, Christians are simply to shine the light of truth in a dark world and to be a preserving influence in an immoral world, even as salt preserves food products (Matthew 5.13-16)

      Based on Jesus' many examples, living in the light of the gospel and being a moral salt in a morally decaying world simply means to speak the truth and to demonstrate grace and love to others. It's not cloudy, it's quite simple.

      Delete
    36. R:Where are the supposed examples in the New Testament that could possibly justify the hatred or killing of gays? There are none

      Hm... Let me think... Jesus is criticizing people at numerous occasions for not following the Mozaic law (John7:19)(John 1:17)(Matthew 15:4-7) (Matthew 5:17 NAB)...

      He also tells us that the law is still in place and must be followed:

      “For truly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass the law until all is accomplished. Whoever then relaxes one of the least of these commandments and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but he who does them and teaches them shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 5:18-19 RSV)

      Now what does Rick have to offer in response? An appeal to authority without really addressing the issue. An addition to the laws does not cancel out the laws before. The same way an ammendment does not cancel out the rest of the Constitution.

      R:Old Testament ethics are based upon legalism: "Eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot," (Exodus 21.24, KJV) Jesus offered "You have heard that it was said, ‘Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.' But I tell you, do not resist an evil person. If anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to them the other cheek also."

      No contradiction here, Rick. That verse is speaking about evil done to YOU. The fact that you are told not to resist an evil person and love that evil person (good luck with your love of Hitler and not resisting a genocide) does not cancel out the law and the need for the good christians surrounding you to compensate your injuries with the injuries of your assaulter. 8)

      R:Jesus explained that love and grace do not nullify the law (Matthew 5. 17) but fulfill it by offering a better way of meeting its requirements.

      "If a man also lie with mankind, as he lies with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be on them." (Leviticus 20:13)

      So we have a clear instruction for christians here and the fact that you will lovingly and tenderly kill those homosexuals does not change the outcome. There are no other instructions on dealing with homosexuals. Hence - no alternatives. FACT.

      R:There is still an objective basis of right and wrong.

      Ehhh... Rick... If it was ok to kill homosexuals before the arrival of Jesus and not ok to kill them afterwards as you claim, that undermines the whole concept of objective morality as you understand it. It is either always wrong to kill homosexuals or always right. You cannot have both.

      R:Based on Jesus' many examples, living in the light of the gospel and being a moral salt in a morally decaying world simply means to speak the truth and to demonstrate grace and love to others.

      So you should not oppose gay marriages politically by that philosophy. Live the way you think is the best and let others live the way they think is the best. However, you hypocritically oppose gay marriages and would vote against it.

      Delete
    37. Therefore, the antagonist has the burden of proof in making the claim that Christians should hate and kill gays.

      So far, nothing of any substance has been offered in the comments of this thread to support this idea in any serious manner.


      I see it's time for the Rick Warden Retreat, in which he ignores large swaths and focuses in entirely on a specific detailed point (like Michael Salman and the "vagueness" of Phoenix disturbing-the-peace laws) in a sort of bizarre rhetorical synecdoche.

      Even leaving aside the many points you've ignored, the point that *I* have been trying to make, and several others have, is that you have several alleged "Christians" who clearly do espouse hatred of homosexuals; including at least one who you've praised quite highly in the past.

      How do you reconcile their advocacy of hatred and execution (in the case of Tim LaHaye) with your viewpoints? Do you disavow them as Christians, by your standards?

      And you have yet to demonstrate why *your* standards, as opposed to anyone else's, are the supposed "objective" truth.

      There is still an objective basis of right and wrong.

      And yet, when asked about it, you waffle. You hide. You ignore the requests.

      Give us text and hermeneutic; if it's "objective", then anyone should be able to follow the process of determining whether something is moral or not.

      If only you can, or if there is a divergence of opinion that cannot be answered by your hermeneutic, it's not an "objective" morality; it's a subjective one.

      Delete
    38. >Hm... Let me think... Jesus is criticizing people at numerous occasions for not following the Mozaic law (John7:19)...

      - Again, being a secular critic not familiar at all with the context, you do not seem to be able to understand the subtle meaning in the verses you offer. Jesus is offering a subtle underlying criticism in your example here:

      John 7.19: "Has not Moses given you the law? Yet not one of you keeps the law. Why are you trying to kill me?"

      Jesus is essentially underlying that these religious leaders live by the law but cannot even keep it. That is one of the main points of the New Testament, that no human can actually keep the law and needs grace in order to be justified in God's eyes.

      Galatians 3.24: "Therefore the Law has become our tutor to lead us to Christ, so that we may be justified by faith." (NASB)

      http://biblehub.com/galatians/3-24.htm

      When you understand how to interpret scripture, you understand that Jesus is actually downplaying the law here, not emphasizing the need to following it religiously. They were plotting and trying to murder an innocent man and this, of course, was a sin.

      >“For truly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass the law until all is accomplished."

      - Yes, absolutely. As I've just pointed out in Galatians 3.24, the purpose of the law is to show us that obedience to the law is inadequate for salvation and its purpose is to point us to Christ. That must indeed be accomplished for all believers. Quite right.

      >Ehhh... Rick... If it was ok to kill homosexuals before the arrival of Jesus and not ok to kill them afterwards as you claim, that undermines the whole concept of objective morality as you understand it.

      - No it does not. As I've stated many times, and as William Lane Craig has stated many times, it is God's eternal, loving and just nature that is the ultimate objective basis or morality, not the various writings at the various times of history. These simply point to this ultimate truth.

      I recommend that you any one else who has a difficult time with this read the following article for more info:

      If God Exists, Then Objective Morality Exists

      http://templestream.blogspot.com/2012/08/if-god-exists-then-objective-morality.html

      Delete
    39. imnotandrei, I think when Rick talks about an "objective morality" he means that most people object to the morality in question :-)

      Delete
    40. By all means, go and look at the linked article:

      http://templestream.blogspot.com/2012/08/if-god-exists-then-objective-morality.html

      And the associated comments, such as:
      http://templestream.blogspot.com/2012/08/if-god-exists-then-objective-morality.html?showComment=1346524719400#c2357688886160729194, where the problem of an indeterminable objective morality was clarified, and then ignored.

      As usual, Rick is repeating claims he's made before in the hopes no one double-checks them.

      Delete
    41. R:Jesus is essentially underlying that these religious leaders live by the law but cannot even keep it.

      Yes, which is a bad thing, since the law is supposed to be followed 8)

      R:That is one of the main points of the New Testament, that no human can actually keep the law and needs grace in order to be justified in God's eyes.

      I guess that dooms every single person who lived before Jesus to an eternity in hell since they were unable to follow the law...

      Furthermore, it does not mean that one should not at least TRY to follow the law and kill homosexuals.

      R:When you understand how to interpret scripture, you understand that Jesus is actually downplaying the law here, not emphasizing the need to following it religiously

      Ah! The million dollar question that Rick refuses to answer. What makes your interpretention the right one and that of other much more prominent theologians like Luther false?

      The fact that Jesus thinks faith is more important than the Law does not cancel out the law itself. He states the opposite in numerous vereses.

      R:Yes, absolutely. As I've just pointed out in Galatians 3.24, the purpose of the law is to show us that obedience to the law is inadequate for salvation and its purpose is to point us to Christ.

      So why do you ignore the second part of the quote?

      "Whoever then relaxes one of the least of these commandments and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but he who does them and teaches them shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.”

      Again, the fact that faith is the most important thing, according to Jesus, does not cancel out the law.

      R:No it does not. As I've stated many times, and as William Lane Craig has stated many times, it is God's eternal, loving and just nature that is the ultimate objective basis or morality, not the various writings at the various times of history.

      You are avoiding the question. Has it always been wrong to kill homosexuals or always right?

      Delete
    42. >Yes, which is a bad thing, since the law is supposed to be followed 8)

      - Because God is perfect in holiness, it is not possible for us to 'live up to' God's standards in this life and this is why is was necessary for Christ to die as a propitiation and atonement for our sins in order that we might be justified by faith. These concepts are noted throughout the New Testament.

      >I guess that dooms every single person who lived before Jesus to an eternity in hell since they were unable to follow the law...

      - No, prior to Christ there were different dispensations when God dealt with people in accordance with that season of history. In the OT, people also lived by faith. There are many instances where Christ is foreshadowed in the OT.

      God sees the heart and knows all the thoughts of all people. Thus, he is able to judge righteously based on what people know.

      >What makes your interpretention the right one and that of other much more prominent theologians like Luther false?

      - This is an oft repeated red herring by atheists and is being used as a form of circular reasoning in this case. So far, not one of the critics has been able to undermine the the main thesis I outlined May 15:

      Outline of basic Christian supersessionism

      1. Orthodox, Catholic and Protestant traditions embrace the doctrine of basic supersessionism.
      2. The New Testament is based on a new covenant.
      3. The new covenant is supersedes the old covenant.
      4. The new covenant emphasizes grace over the law.
      5. The new covenant emphasizes changed relationships and attitudes with God and among fellow citizens.
      6. These changed attitudes reflect proactive love-based ethics over vindictive law-based ethics, as outlined by Christ in the Sermon on the Mount, the introduction of the New Testament.

      Which specific point do you disagree with? Show evidence as to why you believe it is contrary to actual NT text.

      Instead of providing specific faults or inconsistencies, we find circular reasoning.

      'You claim this is what the text means, but that is only your interpretation...yada yada yada...'

      I've provided you with the basic outline. Demonstrate a fault with the outline. If you wish to invoke Luther, then show how Luther's quotes from scripture undermine the outline.

      >You are avoiding the question. Has it always been wrong to kill homosexuals or always right?

      - You are not addressing the outline of scripture I've provided. That would help you to answer your own question. A new covenant is a new covenant. That means a new covenant. The million dollar question seems to be: "Why don't you want to accept the English language?"

      Capital punishment for homosexuality was never a part of the core 10 Commandments, but was an additional law for a specific period of time when the Israelites were under a very strict code. This is not to say that homosexuality is moral, but that the Christian New Testament approach, according to the new covenant, is simply not the same as the legal system at that time.

      Delete
    43. R:Because God is perfect in holiness, it is not possible for us to 'live up to' God's standards...

      So what is the point of giving laws that cannot be followed, Rick? Is god incompetent?

      R:God sees the heart and knows all the thoughts of all people. Thus, he is able to judge righteously based on what people know

      Then that makes the crucifiction meaningless to god s judgement. In both cases god used "mercy and justice" to judge people, making the outcome the same.

      R:This is an oft repeated red herring by atheists and is being used as a form of circular reasoning in this case.

      1. We have dozens of prominent theologians who disagree on the interpretention of several crucial passages in the bible.

      2. You are trying to convince people of being right by using your interpretention of the bible.

      3. When asked what makes your interpretention the right one, you ignore that question or claim a red herring...

      What do you disagree with exactly?

      R:Outline of basic Christian supersessionism

      You need to prove that the "New covenant" cancel out the old laws. Claiming that grace is more important than the law does not eliminate the law. You have no basis to claim that the Old Convenant is a synonym for the law.

      R:Which specific point do you disagree with? Show evidence as to why you believe it is contrary to actual NT text

      "Do not think that I have come to abolish the law or the prophets. I have come not to abolish but to fulfill. Amen, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest part or the smallest part of a letter will pass from the law, until all things have taken place." (Matthew 5:17 NAB)

      Here in Jesus s own words. He came to enforce the law of the OT unaltered.

      R:I've provided you with the basic outline. Demonstrate a fault with the outline. If you wish to invoke Luther, then show how Luther's quotes from scripture undermine the outline.

      1. You provided verses from the bible that do not clearly state that the laws from the OT are no longer in place (which was pointed out to you).

      2. You claim having "superior" understanding of the bible, which allowed you to better interpret the verses (like which are metaphores and which are literal). When asked what makes your interpretention or outline better then those of much more prominent theologians like Luther or Tim LaHaye, you either ignore your opponents or claim a red herring.

      3. You basically ignored the verses provided to you where it is stated that the laws should be followed.

      R:You are not addressing the outline of scripture I've provided.

      Why do I have to address your interpretention of the biblical outline for you to answer a yes or no question? Has it always been right to kill homosexuals or not? If you unable to answer that yes or no question, explain why.

      R:This is not to say that homosexuality is moral, but that the Christian New Testament approach, according to the new covenant, is simply not the same as the legal system at that time

      I am not asking about the legal aspect. I am asking if it was moral or not to kill homosexuals at that time. So was it moral to kill homosexuals at that time as the bible instructed?

      Delete
    44. P.S. If there is a change in ethics, then there is no unchanging objective morality as Rick understand it 8)

      R:These changed attitudes reflect proactive love-based ethics over vindictive law-based ethics, as outlined by Christ in the Sermon on the Mount, the introduction of the New Testament.

      Delete
    45. Really, Rick?

      'You claim this is what the text means, but that is only your interpretation...yada yada yada...'

      I've provided you with the basic outline. Demonstrate a fault with the outline. If you wish to invoke Luther, then show how Luther's quotes from scripture undermine the outline.


      Are you missing the point because you can't answer it, or because you can't understand it?

      Let's try this in your preferred logical form, and see if you can follow it:

      S!:

      P1: If there is an objective morality, it should be determinable in an objective fashion.
      P2: Two people, starting from the same starting point, should reach the same answer, if there is a method for determining an objective fact.
      C: If there is an objective morality based on the Bible, two people should reach the same answers from it.

      S2:
      P1: Martin Luther asserts that people are to be hated for bringing homosexuality to Germany, as cited here: http://templestream.blogspot.com/2013/04/truth-in-love-equals-love-in-truth.html?showComment=1368243079412#c6092302737462908551
      P2: Rick Warden asserts that there is no reason for Christians to hate homosexuals.
      C: Martin Luther and Rick Warden disagree on the subject of hating homosexuals.

      P1(S1C): If there is an objective morality based on the Bible, two people should reach the same answers from it.
      P2:(S2C): Martin Luther and Rick Warden disagree on the subject of hating homosexuals.
      C: Either Christian morality is not objective, or one of Martin Luther or Rick Warden are not Christians.

      (We can repeat the above syllogisms for anti-Semitism, as well.)

      No one was citing Luther in reference to supersessionism, other than you. So asking people for references in Luther about supersessionism is, as you put it, a red herring. Show me where in the above reasoning supersessionism matters, and then we can discuss it. Otherwise, answer the challenge presented, or admit you cannot.

      Delete
    46. >Anonymous, So what is the point of giving laws that cannot be followed, Rick? Is god incompetent?

      - Your question raises a deeper one: Why did God give us free choice knowing we would bungle it and acquire the sin nature?

      This goes back to the logical understanding that there can be no possibility of real love without free choice.

      >Then that makes the crucifiction meaningless to god s judgement. In both cases god used "mercy and justice" to judge people, making the outcome the same.

      - No, not meaningless at all. It was necessary to for God to make a propitiation for our sins. No matter what a person may say, God knows whether a person is ultimately able and willing to accept this or not.

      >We have dozens of prominent theologians who disagree on the interpretention of several crucial passages in the bible.

      - Dozens? Please show where one prominent theologian counters one of the following points with scripture:

      Outline of basic Christian supersessionism

      1. Orthodox, Catholic and Protestant traditions embrace the doctrine of basic supersessionism.
      2. The New Testament is based on a new covenant.
      3. The new covenant is supersedes the old covenant.
      4. The new covenant emphasizes grace over the law.
      5. The new covenant emphasizes changed relationships and attitudes with God and among fellow citizens.
      6. These changed attitudes reflect proactive love-based ethics over vindictive law-based ethics, as outlined by Christ in the Sermon on the Mount, the introduction of the New Testament.

      If you can answer this question it will support your point.

      Delete
    47. >You basically ignored the verses provided to you where it is stated that the laws should be followed.

      - No, I explained to you the main purpose of the law, as defined by scripture itself, which is in complete harmony with what I have been writing with regard to homosexuality.

      I've added this point and others to a previous article:

      If God Exists, Then Objective Morality Exists

      The main purpose of the law

      Secondly, it's important to understand the main purpose of the law. All through the Old Testament, there are references to a future Messiah who would bring salvation to all people. In order to prepare the way for Christ, God the Father demonstrated how the law is inadequate to bring spiritual salvation. The law actually gives us a desire to sin more. The Apostle Paul wrote, "I would not have known sin except through the law." (Romans 7:7b NIV) But he goes even further when he states, "the strength of sin is in the law" (I Corinthians 15.56b NIV) This principle is more easily seen with young children. Tell them they cannot do something, and they will often want to do it all the more. These types of verses lead us to the main purpose of the law, which is to demonstrate our sinful nature and to humbly cry out to Christ for redemptive forgiveness: "Therefore the Law has become our tutor to lead us to Christ, so that we may be justified by faith." (Galatians 3.24, NASB) In this way, Christ came to fulfill all of the law. In Matthew 5.17-18, Jesus states, "Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them." Even though God has chosen to 'teach' humanity using different covenants and different laws in history, this does not mean that the objective basis has changed, as noted in the following outline:

      Eternal divine judgements supersede earthly human judgements.

      1. God has chosen to 'teach' humanity emphasizing different legal requirements in different periods.
      2. Eternal divine judgements do not depend on temporal earthly judgements.
      3. Eternal divine judgements supersede temporal earthly judgements.
      3. God knows the hearts, thoughts and actions of all people.
      3. Therefore, God's eternal judgements may be perfectly consistent and righteous irrespective of temporal changes in legal requirements.

      http://templestream.blogspot.com/2012/08/if-god-exists-then-objective-morality.html

      Delete
    48. R:Your question raises a deeper one: Why did God give us free choice knowing we would bungle it and acquire the sin nature?

      Red herring. That has nothing to do with free will.

      1. You claim it is impossible for human beings to follow biblical laws even if they honestly wished to do so.

      2. Ergo, introducing biblical laws and expecting people TO FOLLOW them is cruel and idiotic.

      R:No, not meaningless at all. It was necessary to for God to make a propitiation for our sins.

      Hm...Let us recap...

      1. Before the crucifiction god used "mercy and justice" to judge people

      2. After the crucifiction god used "mercy and justice" to judge people.

      Yep, that is a huge difference.

      R:Dozens? Please show where one prominent theologian counters one of the following points with scripture

      Ehhh.... Rick... Remember Tim LaHaye and his argument from scripture that homosexuals should be put to death? Or Luther that claimed we are at fault for not killing Jews?

      R:No, I explained to you the main purpose of the law, as defined by scripture itself, which is in complete harmony with what I have been writing with regard to homosexuality

      Unfortunately for you, all the verses you provided turned out to be inadequate to prove your point. It was explained to you in details, but you chose to hide yoursel in lalala land and ignore your opponent. That is your own problem.

      R:Even though God has chosen to 'teach' humanity using different covenants and different laws in history, this does not mean that the objective basis has changed, as noted in the following outline.

      Run, Rick! Run! Those pesky atheist are still trying to make you answer the same question you so bravely have been dodging!

      Has it being moral to kill homosexuals in the time of the OT?

      Delete
    49. More rhetoric:

      "
      - Dozens? Please show where one prominent theologian counters one of the following points with scripture:"

      Anonymous argues:
      "Many theologians have differing interpretation of Scripture."
      Rick replies:
      "Show one who differs on this specific point!"

      As I'm sure you're aware, whether or not you admit it, if Anonymous could provide one, it would not "support" his point, it would *prove* it; because you have taken "Many X disagree about aspects of Y" and turned it into "Show me one X who disagrees with a *single* *specific* aspect of Y."

      (Ironically,a quick Googling of "supersessionism" "disagreement" reveals multiple different definitions of "supersessionism", some of which are *not* agreed with.)

      You still haven't answered my syllogisms above, Rick -- and to use your old claim, if the form is valid (and the form is valid) and the premises are valid, the conclusion is valid.

      So, which premise is wrong, or do you accept the conclusion? If you're so concerned with having everyone accept that you don't hate queerfolk, why are you so insistent that you stand with Luther and LaHaye as fellow Christians?


      Delete
    50. Anonymous.

      >Red herring. That has nothing to do with free will.

      - You asked why people cannot follow God's laws to the letter. Firstly, we're not perfect. No one but God is perfectly holy. Secondly, we're extremely hindered by the sin nature due to the fall of man in the garden. This is not a "red herring" but is a basic biblical explanation.

      >Ergo, introducing biblical laws and expecting people TO FOLLOW them is cruel and idiotic.

      - God never was never "expected people" to be able to fully follow the letter of the law to a T. That was one of the central points of Jesus' intro the the NT. e.g. Matt 5.27-28:

      “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ 28 But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart."

      It's not just the act that is sin, but the thought life. Jesus actually upped the ante of the law on a certain level. But then made it easier to be righteous by providing a means towards righteousness by faith through his crucifixion and atonement for sin.


      >1. Before the crucifiction god used "mercy and justice" to judge people 2. After the crucifiction god used "mercy and justice" to judge people.

      - Your claim does not relate to God's mercy and justice overall but to the legal systems on earth. You claim that NT Christians are supposed to hate and kill people because of the OT law. This is a false claim for reasons I've shown.

      >Rick... Remember Tim LaHaye and his argument from scripture that homosexuals should be put to death?

      - Do show how LaHaye defends this view with New Testament scripture.

      >Unfortunately for you, all the verses you provided turned out to be inadequate to prove your point.

      - Saying you believe that does not make it so. You must demonstrate why my points based on NT scripture are not valid in order to support your point. So far you are just making broad claims unsupported by the New Testament text.

      >Has it being moral to kill homosexuals in the time of the OT?

      - I think grammatically you meant to write "Was it moral to kill homosexuals in the time of the Old Testament?" I have not run from this question, this is the first time anyone has asked it in this thread. If not, offer a link showing where this question was asked?

      In accordance with the Old Testament teachings, capital punishment for practicing homosexuality was considered a part of the legal framework for Israel at that time and therefore the capital punishment was considered moral. No mystery.

      Just curious, have you found any scriptural faults with the points I had given you in the noted outline?:

      Eternal divine judgements supersede earthly human judgements.

      1. God has chosen to 'teach' humanity emphasizing different legal requirements in different periods.
      2. Eternal divine judgements do not depend on temporal earthly judgements.
      3. Eternal divine judgements supersede temporal earthly judgements.
      3. God knows the hearts, thoughts and actions of all people.
      3. Therefore, God's eternal judgements may be perfectly consistent and righteous irrespective of temporal changes in legal requirements.

      Delete
    51. You claim that NT Christians are supposed to hate and kill people because of the OT law. This is a false claim for reasons I've shown.

      Actually, most of the claims here have been that people claiming to be Christians do so -- and they cite the OT law as part of their reasoning.

      Now, you can either disavow them as "not true Christians", (though then you must explain why), or admit that the texts are open to multiple interpretations.

      - Do show how LaHaye defends this view with New Testament scripture.

      Why should we defend LaHaye? You're the one who's refusing to disavow him, despite the fact that he has stated that it would be more merciful to kill a homosexual than allow them to live in perversion.

      DO you disagree with him? And if so, what does that say about his status as a Christian, in your light?

      Similarly, Luther said people he felt brought sodomy to Germany deserved to be hated. You claim that hating homosexuals is not Biblically supported. So, do you disavow Luther?

      Oh, and to get insight into LaHaye's biblical thinking:

      Well, from Concerned Women of America, his wife's website:

      In the New Testament, Jude 7 reinforces Sodom’s punishment, explicitly stating that the Sodomites were punished for sexual perversion, not simply for being inhospitable:

      7 [A]s Sodom and Gomorrah, and the cities around them in a similar manner to these, having given themselves over to sexual immorality and gone after strange flesh, are set forth as an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.


      Of course, Jewish thought identifies the sin of Sodom and Gomorrah as being lack of hospitality, so here's an example of the New Testament being *harsher* towards homosexuality than the Old.

      In accordance with the Old Testament teachings, capital punishment for practicing homosexuality was considered a part of the legal framework for Israel at that time and therefore the capital punishment was considered moral. No mystery.

      So it was moral then, and is not moral now? Is that your assertion?

      3. Eternal divine judgements supersede temporal earthly judgements.

      Then either the people who were killed for being homosexual then are martyrs, or you believe that people *should* be killed now for it. All we have to go on, and all we can do, here, is what humans can do.

      3. Therefore, God's eternal judgements may be perfectly consistent and righteous irrespective of temporal changes in legal requirements.

      This is nothing but handwaving; if we don't see, and cannot act upon, "God's eternal judgments", then they are irrelevant to our moral actions now.

      Delete
    52. R:You asked why people cannot follow God's laws to the letter. Firstly, we're not perfect...

      Yes and that all boils down to the fact we are unable to follow the law even if we wish to do so. Hence, our free will is irrelevant. Ergo - red herring.

      R:God never was never "expected people" to be able to fully follow the letter of the law

      And that makes him a cruel dictator for arbitary decideng to punish thousands of people for not being able to physically follow the law.

      R:It's not just the act that is sin, but the thought life

      Yes, thinking is a crime in Christianity. Having biological urges is also a crime.

      R:Your claim does not relate to God's mercy and justice overall but to the legal systems on earth.

      Yes, we did derail the conversation a little bit. Though, that does not cancel out my point about the needless crucifiction.

      R:Do show how LaHaye defends this view with New Testament scripture.

      I do not need to defend LaHaye as imnotandrei has pointed out. And I also do not have to limit myself to the NT.

      R:Saying you believe that does not make it so. You must demonstrate why my points based on NT scripture are not valid in order to support your point.

      I did. Several times even. Again it is your own problem that you hide in lalala land.

      Here in Jesus s own words. He came to enforce the law of the OT unaltered:

      "Do not think that I have come to abolish the law or the prophets. I have come not to abolish but to fulfill. Amen, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest part or the smallest part of a letter will pass from the law, until all things have taken place." (Matthew 5:17 NAB)

      “For truly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass the law until all is accomplished. Whoever then relaxes one of the least of these commandments and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but he who does them and teaches them shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 5:18-19 RSV)

      R:I have not run from this question, this is the first time anyone has asked it in this thread. If not, offer a link showing where this question was asked?

      I first raised the point on May 15 in this thread. Asked the question on Msy 17. Repeated the question on May 18th and May 19th.

      R:In accordance with the Old Testament teachings, capital punishment for practicing homosexuality was considered a part of the legal framework for Israel at that time and therefore the capital punishment was considered moral.

      Thank you for proving my point. You claim that morality is unchanging and objective. However, you have just acknowledged that it was once moral to kill homosexuals and now it is immoral to kill homosexuals. Therefore, you do not have an objective unchanging morality as you claimed before.

      R:Just curious, have you found any scriptural faults with the points I had given you in the noted outline?

      I did before and imnotandrei has also pointed out the problem. There is no consensus on the term supersessionism or new convenant and what it means

      Delete
    53. Lets see what Paul has to say concerning homosexuality, shall we?

      Romans 1:27-32 "In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.
      Furthermore, just as they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, so God gave them over to a depraved mind, so that they do what ought not to be done. They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice. They are gossips, slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents; they have no understanding, no fidelity, no love, no mercy. Although they know God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them."


      I bolded the pertinent parts for you.

      Here Paul acknowledges that the punishment for these things (including homosexuality) is death, that such punishment is righteous, and therefore such punishment is what is "good" in the eyes of God (as the OT makes clear).
      This means that your claim that homosexuals do not deserve death is actually going against your god and your supposed objective morality.

      Note also that disobeying your parents is grouped in there - such a "good" god you worship Rick.

      Delete
    54. Anonymous,

      >Yes and that all boils down to the fact we are unable to follow the law even if we wish to do so. Hence, our free will is irrelevant.

      - It seems you've missed the point. The reason humanity has the sin nature in the first place is because of man's free will in the garden of Eden. The reason it is so difficult for mankind to follow the law is because of the sin nature. Hence, the criticism you bring up traces back to man's free will. It was not God's fault that man sinned in the garden. As noted many times already, it is not possible to have love without free will.

      >R:God never was never "expected people" to be able to fully follow the letter of the law...And that makes him a cruel dictator for arbitary decideng to punish thousands of people for not being able to physically follow the law.

      - No, that simply means that mankind would fall in the garden. Man had free will and chose sin at first, though God showed love and patience.

      >R:It's not just the act that is sin, but the thought life...Yes, thinking is a crime in Christianity. Having biological urges is also a crime.

      - It seems you've hit on a key point. There is a difference between a person's sin and a "crime" that requires physical incarceration or punishment by society. None of you posting here seem to be able to ascertain the difference.

      Take Ryan's point, for example. He quotes Romans 1 which offers in part: "Although they know God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them."

      Is it possible for any of you to understand that sin "deserves death" because it is a sin against a holy God but that this does not necessarily mean the person should be physically killed by the society?

      If that were truly the case, according to Jesus' Sermon on the Mount, then all people should be immediately killed because all men have at one time or another hated someone or lusted after a woman not their own.

      The fact is, Israeli Jews did not even have the right to commit capital punishment at the time of the New Testament because of the Roman occupation. That is why they asked the Romans to try him and kill him.

      So, Rian's quote is false, "Here Paul acknowledges that the punishment for these things (including homosexuality) is death,"

      A correct statement about Paul according to Paul's theology would be the following:

      "Paul offers that homosexual acts still deserve death according to God's holy and righteous standards, as do all acts of sin against God. However, if we were to all be judged according to our sins, it would be quite clear that we all deserve death according to the Sermon on the Mount. And it is only by God's grace that God has made a way of salvation for us through the cross of Christ."

      So, Anonymus and Rian, your points are quite weak when it comes to an informed and accurate look at scripture. Perhaps there are some secular critics out there in support of gay marriage who know scripture a little better than these two? If so, now would be a good time to show up. These ones seem to be running out of possible criticisms.

      Delete
    55. R:The reason humanity has the sin nature in the first place is because of man's free will in the garden of Eden

      Yes I know your immoral stance that children should be held accountable for the deeds of their parents.

      R:The reason it is so difficult for mankind to follow the law is because of the sin nature.

      Are you flip-flopping? You were saying it is physically IMPOSSIBLE for human beings to follow the law, not difficult. If it is phisically impossible, then it is not a choice.

      R:No, that simply means that mankind would fall in the garden. Man had free will and chose sin at first, though God showed love and patience

      Sorry. You fail again. The fact that Adam and Eve "chose" to sin, does not mean that their children "chose" to sin.

      R:There is a difference between a person's sin and a "crime" that requires physical incarceration or punishment by society.

      Let s play our favorite game, Rick... Definition of words:

      "Sin - an immoral act considered to be a transgression against divine law"

      "Crime - an action or omission which constitutes an offence and is punishable by law"

      Yep, we have a biiiig difference here. Both are acts violating a sort of law. Though, in one case it is the society that punishes and on the other - god.

      R:Is it possible for any of you to understand that sin "deserves death" because it is a sin against a holy God but that this does not necessarily mean the person should be physically killed by the society?

      Hm... Let me think... God specifically ordains our society to kill homosexuals (Leviticus 20:13). That order is never canceled by Jesus, who claimed he arrived to enforce the OT law and is encourage by Paul... And now you claim that is a some sort of metaphore without giving any evidence why your interpretention is the right one... Yep, it all make sense.

      R:If that were truly the case, according to Jesus' Sermon on the Mount, then all people should be immediately killed...

      Yes that is precisely what Jesus says. The alternative to killing - castration 8)

      R:The fact is, Israeli Jews did not even have the right to commit capital punishment at the time of the New Testament because of the Roman occupation

      Which caused several uprising and the criticism from Jesus himself for not following the law.

      R:A correct statement about Paul according to Paul's theology would be the following

      And what is Paul s theology? An INTERPRETENTION of the holy book, one of numerous. You need to prove that is the only possible one.

      R:So, Anonymus and Rian, your points are quite weak when it comes to an informed and accurate look at scripture.

      Again, let me ask you the same quesion. What makes your view better than that of Luther, LaHaye and so on?

      R:Perhaps there are some secular critics out there in support of gay marriage who know scripture a little better than these two?

      Note that you have not presented even the slightest argument against gay marrige besides some immoral instruction from an old moldy book.

      Delete
    56. Note that you have not presented even the slightest argument against gay marrige besides some immoral instruction from an old moldy book.

      Well, to be fair, he did present them. They were ridiculous, but he did present them, and elected not to defend them when challenged. Classic Rick: narrow the arguments until you get to one point you think you can defend, and claim you are vindicated.

      I do find it amusing that we're told that instructions that gays deserve death does not mean people are supposed to execute them, but does mean we're supposed to do other things to them -- like deny them rights. I wonder where the line between "What we're supposed to do in following scripture" and "What we're supposed to leave to God" is drawn, and what the alleged justification for that is.

      Delete
    57. Rick, you didn't offer any quotes from Paul to support your contention that Homosexuals should not be put to death.

      Please note that you are now supporting the claim that children disobeying their parents deserve death. Lovely "objective" morality you claim to follow Rick :-)

      Delete
    58. >Yes I know your immoral stance that children should be held accountable for the deeds of their parents.

      - If a way of salvation is offered and people like you choose to reject it, then it would seem quite just to allow you to have your own way and be separated from God.

      >Though, in one case it is the society that punishes and on the other - god.

      - Exactly. That was my point. New Testament Christians are not called to kill gays anywhere in the NT. It is understood that God will judge all people, including gays, for their moral choices. It is understood that justice will be served by God.

      >You were saying it is physically IMPOSSIBLE for human beings to follow the law, not difficult. If it is phisically impossible, then it is not a choice.

      - Spirit filled Christians do make mistakes, but I would offer that it is possible to walk with a much higher standard of righteousness as a spirit-filled Christian than as one who rejects God. It is a choice on a moment by moment basis which decisions we will make.

      >Sorry. You fail again. The fact that Adam and Eve "chose" to sin, does not mean that their children "chose" to sin.

      - You can choose to reject God and His Holy Spirit's power and you also have moment by moment moral choices. On both accounts you can choose sin over righteousness.

      Delete
    59. Continued for Anonymous,

      >That order is never canceled by Jesus, who claimed he arrived to enforce the OT law and is encourage by Paul... And now you claim that is a some sort of metaphore without giving any evidence why your interpretention is the right one...

      - The real issue is your refusal to acknowledge the plain meaning of the English language.

      Webster's "supersede"

      a : to cause to be set aside
      b : to force out of use as inferior
      2
      : to take the place or position of
      3
      : to displace in favor of another

      Again, I'll ask you: which point regarding the new covenant do you not understand? Maybe I can help you narrow down your problem with understanding some very basic foundational ideas:

      Outline of basic Christian supersessionism

      1. Orthodox, Catholic and Protestant traditions embrace the doctrine of basic supersessionism.
      2. The New Testament is based on a new covenant.
      3. The new covenant is supersedes the old covenant.
      4. The new covenant emphasizes grace over the law.
      5. The new covenant emphasizes changed relationships and attitudes with God and among fellow citizens.
      6. These changed attitudes reflect proactive love-based ethics over vindictive law-based ethics, as outlined by Christ in the Sermon on the Mount, the introduction of the New Testament.

      As far as Jesus "fulfilling the law" is concerned, it is all spelled out in the New Testament and it has everything to do with spiritual love and power, and nothing to do with physical force and killing.

      There are two ways in which the New Testament fulfills the law. Firstly, in Christ himself, and, secondly, by the word of God. In the Sermon on the Mount Jesus raised the bar of sin and law showing that no human can possibly fulfill the law's requirements based on our thought-life alone. Because Jesus is perfect and died as a perfect propitiation for our sin, he did in fact fulfill all of the law for all who would believe and follow him. Secondly, the law is fulfilled as a teacher in leading us to Christ. Galatians 3.24 states, "Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith." (KJV). In pointing to Christ, the purpose of the law has been fulfilled. Paul wrote that the law was made for sinners, not for the righteous. (I Timothy 1.9) Once we are born again by the Holy Spirit and acquire the new nature Paul described in Romans 6, then we become free from our slavery to the sin nature: "We know that our old self was crucified with him in order that the body of sin might be brought to nothing, so that we would no longer be enslaved to sin.." (Romans 6.6, ESV). Thus, the most effective manner of fulfilling the law and seeing a righteous society is for as many people as possible to become genuine Christians, to receive the Holy Spirit and know the inner power of loving God and loving others.

      The pattern of 'love over law' is noted throughout the Sermon on the Mount and throughout the New Testament. Jesus explained that love and grace do not nullify the law (Matthew 5. 17) but fulfill it by offering a better way of meeting its requirements. There is still an objective basis of right and wrong in God's eternal righteous existence. For more information on that subject, see article, If God Exists, Then Objective Morality Exists. As opposed to hatred and killing, Christians are simply to shine the light of truth in a dark world and to be a preserving influence in an immoral world, even as salt preserves food products (Matthew 5.13-16)

      There, plenty of specific NT verse to back up my point. Now, offer one verse in the NT to support you claim that Christians should hate and kill gays. I still haven't seen it.

      Delete
    60. Rian,

      >Rick, you didn't offer any quotes from Paul to support your contention that Homosexuals should not be put to death.

      - Actually, I have been offering numerous examples. And if it is too difficult for you and others to understand that a new legal covenant supersedes and old one and all the points in it, then there is not much use in attempting to engage in a discourse with you.

      >Please note that you are now supporting the claim that children disobeying their parents deserve death.

      - It becomes an exercise in futility when people who debate refuse to acknowledge the basic definitions of words in the English language. So be it. You have offered nothing from the New Testament (the new legal agreement) that supports your case that the Old Testament must be followed. Whereas I have offered numerous cohesive examples supporting my position.

      Delete
    61. R:If a way of salvation is offered and people like you choose to reject it...

      That does not change the fact that you are scum for blaming children for the "sins" of their parents.

      R:Exactly. That was my point. New Testament Christians are not called to kill gays anywhere in the NT. It is understood that God will judge all people, including gays, for their moral choices.

      Sorry, but you do not get it and you ignore what your opponent is saying as usual. Let us recap:

      1. Jesus in his own words has claimed that he has come to enforce the immoral laws from the OT

      2. Laws from the OT asks christians to kill gays (which you even acknowledged as moral at the time of the OT)

      3. Not only gays are supposed to be executed by society, they will be punished a second time by being cast off into an eternity in hell. They are punished TWICE for an action that some find unaesthetic.

      R:Spirit filled Christians do make mistakes, but I would offer that it is possible to walk with a much higher standard of righteousness as a spirit-filled Christian than as one who rejects God.

      Bold assertion

      R:You can choose to reject God and His Holy Spirit's power and you also have moment by moment moral choices.

      Then you fully acknowledged your flip-flop and that the Laws from the OT can be followed?

      R:The real issue is your refusal to acknowledge the plain meaning of the English language.

      No, the real problem is that you are an ignorant know-it-all, who has not even the basic knowledge on theology and its different branches. At least start with wikipedia:

      "Both Christian and Jewish theologians have identified different types of supersessionism in Christian reading of the Bible."

      en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Supersessionism

      R:Again, I'll ask you: which point regarding the new covenant do you not understand?

      Rick. At least start with the minimum of background knowledge from wikipedia. I repeat: THERE IS NO CLEAR AGREED UPON DEFINITION OF SUPERSESSIONISM AND NEW COVENANT. That is fact.

      R:As far as Jesus "fulfilling the law" is concerned, it is all spelled out in the New Testament and it has everything to do with spiritual love and power, and nothing to do with physical force and killing.

      Sigh.... For the thousand time. You need to prove it and not assert it.

      R:"Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith." (KJV). In pointing to Christ, the purpose of the law has been fulfilled.

      And you need to prove it was its only purpose.

      R:Paul wrote that the law was made for sinners, not for the righteous. (I Timothy 1.9) Once we are born again by the Holy Spirit and acquire the new nature Paul described in Romans 6, then we become free from our slavery to the sin nature

      Laws are describing HOW a true christian should behave. The holy ghostly thing is just supposed to help you understand apriori what those laws are, not change them in any way. Hence, an instruction to kill homosexuals back then should still be in effect today. The only difference would be it is in your "heart", not just in a moldy book.

      Delete
    62. R:Jesus explained that love and grace do not nullify the law (Matthew 5. 17) but fulfill it by offering a better way of meeting its requirements.

      He says no such thing. Point the verse where Jesus clearly states that "grace" fullfill the law.

      R:There is still an objective basis of right and wrong in God's eternal righteous existence.

      Liar. You have acknowledged before that the same action that was moral in the past (the killing of homosexual), is now immoral. You cannot have an objective unchanging morality if the same action is once moral, but later on - immoral.

      R:There, plenty of specific NT verse to back up my point.

      Unfortunately, you have not offerd a single verse where it states that killing homosexuals is wrong. You also failed to prove so far the "grace" fulfills the law. And even if you do manage to do so. You cannot honestly criticize christians that kill homosexuals for religious reason. Following the OT is just another way of fullfilling the law at most.

      R:Actually, I have been offering numerous examples. And if it is too difficult for you and others to understand that a new legal covenant...

      As long as you refuse to educate yourself even through a short article from wikipedia, no one can help you, Rick.

      Delete
    63. Actually, I have been offering numerous examples.
      Paul seems fairly explicit in the passage I offered. Why not accept the plain reading of this?

      And if it is too difficult for you and others to understand that a new legal covenant supersedes and old one and all the points in it, then there is not much use in attempting to engage in a discourse with you.
      Yet Jesus claims, in Matt 5:17, that the law has not been superseeded. Here Jesus says he came to fulfil the law, the Greek here does not give the sense of supersession, or abandonment, but of giving a full realisation - Jesus here is saying he came to explicate the law rather than do away with it.
      Accrding to this passage, the Law is still in effect (including death for disobedient children).

      Whereas I have offered numerous cohesive examples supporting my position.
      Claiming something is not the same as actually doing it.

      Delete
    64. >That does not change the fact that you are scum for blaming children for the "sins" of their parents.

      - So in your opinion there should be no cause and effect in life and existence. Whatever sins or crimes a person commits out of free will should have no consequences? his sounds a lot like present-day politics.

      >1. Jesus in his own words has claimed that he has come to enforce the immoral laws from the OT

      - Your points fail at #1. The term used is "fulfill" and the meaning is quite different. I've posted a new logical outline and if you can find a fault in one of the points, do point it out:

      http://templestream.blogspot.com/2013/05/homosexuality-and-regenerative-new.html

      Homosexuality and the Regenerative New Testament

      Delete
    65. Rian,

      >Paul seems fairly explicit in the passage I offered. Why not accept the plain reading of this?

      - You are clearly going around in circles at this point. As I already pointed out, there is a difference between pointing out that a sin deserves punishment in light of God's holiness and claiming that Christians in a completely new superseding legal framework are therefore supposed to punish people because of ancient laws and edicts. There isn't a logical connection.

      Instead of harping away on one or two verses that you have been unsuccessful in debating, try assessing the big picture using a number of specific relevant verses in context. This may help you and others who may stumble upon your comments.

      Homosexuality and the Regenerative New Testament

      http://templestream.blogspot.com/2013/05/homosexuality-and-regenerative-new.html

      Delete
    66. R:Whatever sins or crimes a person commits out of free will should have no consequences?

      Sorry, you fail again. Being destined to hell from birth has nothing to do with free will. Hence, you are still scum for thinking that "evil" babies deserve to be tortured forever.

      R:Your points fail at #1. The term used is "fulfill" and the meaning is quite different.

      If we take into account you just ignored most of my points as usual, I doubt you will be able to put anything concrete in the picture.

      Delete
    67. there is a difference between pointing out that a sin deserves punishment in light of God's holiness and claiming that Christians in a completely new superseding legal framework are therefore supposed to punish people because of ancient laws and edicts.
      well, you haven't shown that Christians are under a completely different "legal framework".
      Also, if there is a completely different legal framework in which judgement is left to god, why the opposition to same sex marriage?

      Instead of harping away on one or two verses that you have been unsuccessful in debating,
      You mean which you've been unsuccessful in addressing.

      try assessing the big picture using a number of specific relevant verses in context.
      I have been assessing the verses I've been "harping on about" in context. I'm sorry you are unable to understand that.

      Delete
    68. >well, you haven't shown that Christians are under a completely different "legal framework...

      Well, actually Rian, on May 23 I offered a number of points related to the new legal system outlined in the Bible. If you have any questions about any of the specific points, just let me know:

      Outline of basic Christian supersessionism

      1. Orthodox, Catholic and Protestant traditions embrace the doctrine of basic supersessionism.
      2. The New Testament is based on a new covenant.
      3. The new covenant is supersedes the old covenant.
      4. The new covenant emphasizes grace over the law.
      5. The new covenant emphasizes changed relationships and attitudes with God and among fellow citizens.
      6. These changed attitudes reflect proactive love-based ethics over vindictive law-based ethics, as outlined by Christ in the Sermon on the Mount, the introduction of the New Testament.

      >You mean which you've been unsuccessful in addressing.

      - You apparently haven't even looked at previous comments in this thread.

      >I have been assessing the verses I've been "harping on about" in context. I'm sorry you are unable to understand that.

      - Ryan, both you and Anonymous have focused on one verse and taken the meaning out of context (When Jesus said he's come to fulfill the law). You've ignored all the other points I've offered.

      Delete
    69. Rian, Since your comments on this post, I've written a new post with 5 points related to the verse you love to harp away on.

      How did Jesus Fulfill the Law and the Prophets?

      http://templestream.blogspot.com/2013/07/how-did-jesus-fulfill-law-and-prophets.html

      If you have any questions with regard to that verse and subject, please post them beneath that article. Thanks.

      Delete
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    ReplyDelete
  7. These ones seem to be running out of possible criticisms.

    Let's look at some criticisms Rick has chosen to simply ignore, rather than respond to, as he claims his critics are "running out".

    Also, if you read my initial response, I argued, and maintain, that "genetically transferred" and "biologically determined" are not the same thing -- and arguments in favor of discrimination against a biologically determined trait are just as malignant.

    I cite back to you Ezekiel 18:2-18:20. Which is part of the problem of using the Bible as a so-called "objective" source; it can be cited to support contradictory positions very easily, and there is no objective hermeneutic.

    Did it ever occur to you that the [gay people who took the time to talk to Rick] might be a self-selected group?

    By this same "logic", we could argue that if Christianity is given permission to practice in public, then *any* religion has to be protected, and a precedent has been set for human sacrifices in the public square, since we allow Christians to preach there, with permits.

    More to follow, but I just want to point out now that Rick doesn't seem to understand the difference between a "gender identity" (male, female, trans, genderqueer, etc.) and a "sexual orientation". Perhaps a bit of clarity in your terms might help clarify your thinking, Rick.

    R:If you have any cogent scientific facts to offer on this theme, please do.

    Me and others have already done so. It is your own problem that you choose to ignore those studies.


    Actually, here's the relevant quote:

    Forty-six percent of the homosexual men in contrast to 7% of the heterosexual men reported homosexual molestation.

    You dropped a word, and it's a significant one. Without similar figures for "heterosexual molestation" on both populations, you can't draw any conclusions. Welcome back to Social Science 101.


    No Christian gay bashing in the NT. Just the message of truth and love.

    So, again -- you are prepared to argue that someone arguing that it is better for homosexuals to die than continue being gay is not a true Christian?


    So, in short, Rick has taken his big 7 (or was it 10?) myths, and his entire focus for defending them now is a technical point of Scriptural debate. Despite the fact that his initial assertions were about social science, history, biology, and law, he now believes that by arguing one theological point into the ground, he has somehow "defended" his article.

    Even there, he consistently dodges theological questions when they are not ones he thinks he can defend.

    Sorry, Rick, but being right about one thing does not make you right about everything; defending one narrow point does not mean the errors you made in your article don't exist.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. As noted and well-documented in a previous article, I feel no sense of obligation to respond to habitual slanderers such as Imnotandrei...

      http://templestream.blogspot.com/2013/02/slander-logic-and-venn-diagrams.html

      Delete
  8. Amusing; Rick gets challenged to answer points he dropped from previous responses to me -- and now he pulls out the "habitual slanders" canard. I encourage people to look at the link and see Rick's ludicrous logic there.

    Whether he thinks I'm a slanderer or not has nothing to do with the validity of my arguments. Rick has frequently claimed that people who don't respond to him (like Stephen Law) don't have an answer to his questions. By his own standard, he clearly has no answer to my challenges above.

    So what are we left with from RIck's first-seven-then-10 facts? An ongoing squabble about supersessionism, and an ad hominem rebuttal. No wonder marriage equality is spreading throughout the world, if this is the quality of arguments against it.

    ReplyDelete

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