11. Homosexuality: Revisited

Edit 1: 9th November, 2:50pm

The last time I made a post on this topic, a lot of fury sparked up. Fair enough, that was well over 2 years ago. I haven’t given the topic too much thought since that time, nor have I been diligently studying the views held by both sides (for and against – state vs church). Nevertheless I have held back long enough since Mid Year Conference; one seminar gave me probably enough to conclude and leave this topic behind once and for all.

 

For starters let’s lay down the ground assumptions that Christians oppose the notion of homosexuality and gay marriages, because the Bible opposes that notion. The reason for this is because the Bible has authority and strong influence in our views and morals. Those who accept and support homosexuality and gay marriages and just those who want it; whether it’s because they want it for themselves because they are gays, whether because they think it’s fair for it to be accepted, or for some other reason which I’m sure holds some credibility.

 

Christians believe it’s a sin to be caught up in homosexuality and to pervert marriage by tainting with “sexual immorality”, something we would simply say is sexually “wrong”. Without going down the path of figuring out the sciences behind homosexual lusts, whether it’s genetic, whether it’s controllable or not by us, is not something we can find out I believe. But it is important. If people choose to be gay then we don’t have a problem. You choose to do the “wrong” thing, that’s your fault which you are entirely responsible for. However, if you have no controllable about the orientation then there’s all the fuss to be made. If you’re “forced” to be gay, then it’s like you’re being forced into sin even if you don’t want to. There’s no freedom in trying to choose the right thing because you can’t. And subsequently you suffer from a “sin” which you had no control over, which you can’t be expected to take responsibility for. If you had no control over your sexual orientation then things start to look unfair. Is God doing it to say: “Sorry, mate, but you don’t stand a chance because of it; my kingdom can’t be for you.”

 

Predestination is a topic I don’t want to deal with right now, and there is no need to. Regardless of which case homosexuality falls into, whether we have control over it or not, we should at least define it and see if it is unique in such a way that gives it a chance to be unfair. I guess I would loosely define homosexuality as having sexual lust for a person of the same gender. Our speaker at MYC this year was a gay. I don’t know if he was one when he spoke to us, but if he hadn’t said anything to us,  would never have thought he had a past such as the one he told us. He told us that a similar thing to homosexuality is simply normal lust: that is, sexual lust for someone of the opposite gender. Relatively speaking then, we who have the “correct” sexual orientation would then be no better than someone who was gay. We both would have sexual lust, it’s just that the targets are different. Nevertheless, lust is lust whoever it is directed at.

 

The conclusion I reached last time was that homosexuality should not be regarded as such a "”huge controversial” problem. Sin is sin, it takes many forms; homosexuality is one of them, which is similar to normal sexual lust; both are still considered as sinful in God’s eyes. It is no more serious than being a serial killer and no less than being a liar. It’s relative. Why it does appear to be a big problem is because the media does a lot to make it a pressing topic. It’s on the news often, in the newspapers, seen on ads around the neighbourhood. I’m not saying it’s explicitly obvious but it’s there enough times to make you stop and think about it. In fact I’m writing this now because it was just on the news again. If the media were not giving so much attention to this topic, nobody would be making a huge fuss about legalizing gay marriages and such.

 

I’m not against gay marriage, nor am I for it. Ask me where I stand and I will say I’m against it; against it in my mind, against it in my thoughts and values. I am not going to be “against” it in a way to prevent gay marriages from being legalized. I have no authority to align myself with such a thought. The church has no power to prevent it either. If the governments wants to make it okay to have gay marriages then so be it. The church, as much as anyone in world, and about any topic, should only be able to suggest and recommend the “right” thing to do, according to God’s word. It shouldn’t have the power to force people away from them. Everyone has free choice yes; the choice to do the “right” thing and the choice to do the “wrong” thing. But I suppose Christian morals are only suggestible by us too, we cannot impose them by force.

 

But one thing for certain is: a lot of people do “feel” that homosexuality is “right” for weak reasons, there isn’t much to justify the notion. Ask yourself why you think homosexuality is fair/”right” if you are in support of it. Is it because you are one yourself and you want to make yourself right by supporting the view (similar to supporting “Asians” because you are one)? Is it because a lot of people are gay, or in support of gays such that it should be right? Is it something else? The bottom question is: “Is my reason sufficient to justify homosexuality? We Christians say homosexuality is not right, and we use the Bible as our tool of justification. Yes, it would be fair to say that our support is only reasonable if everyone accepted the Bible was true and that it has authority. But it still stands to question whether or not there is a justifiable reason to support homosexuality. Because if you don’t have one (or if there isn’t one) then you are not in a position to Christian view. A lot more detail would need to go into this topic too, which I won’t go into now (not that I think I could do it thoroughly at the moment). Just because a lot of people are in support of something, doesn’t mean it’s right. You see a lot of Christians believing in God, why don’t you too? Same reason for why some people don’t support homosexuality, whether they are Christian or not. But that only answers the question on “numbers”. Is there is one that sounds legit please tell me.

 

What is getting me worked up about the topic is that the media calls its “discrimination” when not everyone is in full support of it. I feel it is a very arrogant and misguided tone, to call us Christians as “discriminating” because we aren’t allowing “freedom” in choice. Well, you’re wrong. We don’t care what anyone does. Sure, we can tell the world what we believe the right thing to do is, but like I said we can’t force that notion onto anyone else. If others accept it, good. If others don’t, that’s also fine. But I do hope that such a remark is directed only at those who are actually trying to ban the notion; I don’t believe anyone is trying that to a great success. You might as well say something like “anyone who doesn’t support incest is being discriminative”. If enough people supported such a vile act then would there be a similar movement to make such an act “legal”? Surely it’s not unfair if both parties consent right? But why doesn’t it feel right? Because it is morally wrong! Simple as that. But that’s out view, that’s our opinion. We can only say what we think is right; we can’t force anyone to submit to our thoughts. The only way for a person to figure out what is right or wrong from this position is to experience the consequences of venturing into something God does not approve. Then they can decide whether they want to support it or not.

 

In summary, homosexuality is a problem but it goes on the same level as murder, deceit, greed, other follies we see in the world today. To support a view you must have sound reasoning that can provide justification; numbers is not one of them as shown by counter example. I hope this closes the book on the topic of homosexuality and hopefully anything that is questioned about this post can be attributed to a more generalized topic.

 

Reply 1: Akai Hanabi

Nowhere in the New Testament does it repeat the quote you mentioned, which appears in Leviticus (3rd book of the Bible). The only references in the New Testament are to “sexual immorality”, which today Christians would place homosexuality under.

 

I agree with you on the lines that my definition of homosexuality is rather narrow and over simplified. This does not mean that my conclusion is “flawed” (in that everything is relatively flawed anyhow), but that there would be less sound reasoning to back my conclusion up because my foundation for discussion is not strong. However, to add these “romantic feelings” into the discussion does not improve my definition any more.

 

I’m not quite familiar with the exact definition of romance; if you have time to elaborate please help clarify the meaning. The way I see it is that adding romance just brings to light the two types of love associated with most relationships. The first part as I’ve said already would be lust; this involves all feelings/thoughts relating to the physically sexual part of the relationship. Whereas the other part would be like selfless, unrequited love; I would associate this with romance. This is the type of love you would have with your parents, with your friends, and even with lovers when there is no physical attraction for that moment. Is that romance, I wonder? Because if this love is common between all people, between all sorts of relationships, it would be fair to eliminate it from discussion since it doesn’t make homosexuality any different from other sorts of relationships. That is why I only considered lust.

 

Some Christians are discriminating, yes. Sadly they voice their opinion in a much “unloving” way. Not everyone does it right and for all Christians to be viewed stereotypically because of one person’s arrogance is of course quite detrimental to our integrity as a church, and as followers of Christ. Have I blogged up something on this? I might do it at a later time.

 

Last time I did say something about homosexuality being genetic or whatever. Whatever the exact scientific cause is doesn’t matter. Generally speaking, in such a case we would say that homosexuality is out of our control. And once again, there’s the unfair element which I was talking about above. Because we have no control over something that causes us to sin, can it be attributed to us and can we be punished and held responsible for something we had no control over? But if this is so, it certainly is no different from other problems. Junkies have psychological problems which are induced by a bad childhood/upbringing. The parents might have been junkies, or family life was violence-ridden or something else that would’ve scarred the child to become a junkie at a later age. In all such cases the junkie had no control over the things that eventually caused him to be the way he was. Can he be attributed to his own demise, though he had no hand in it? Whatever the answer is (re: predestination), this is a problem no different from homosexuality. There is 1) a lack of control; 2) sin.

 

And thank you for pointing out the specific type of discrimination that gays face. I think it slipped my mind completely when I first typed it. Yes, if in workplaces they are being denied jobs and rights because of their orientation, that is discrimination. It would follow to some extent the same patterns exhibited by criminals trying to re-enter the workforce after rehabilitation. Sin scars, whatever sin it is. But it should leave a mark such that there is no second chance for them. Everyone deserves a second chance. And nobody should be held back because of their sin in the world.

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One thought on “11. Homosexuality: Revisited

  1. Like I’ve asked before, where in the New Testament can you find that it says that homosexuality is a sin? Is it specific? Or does it say if a man lies with another man as he lies with a woman etc etc?

    I strongly disagree with your definition of homosexuality. Homosexuality can’t be simplified into lust for someone of the same gender. For one thing, you haven’t included romantic feelings, you’ve implied it’s just pure lust. Secondly, how you define what gender is? Gender is a cultural construct (not the major issue, just being snarky here). Following this, since you decided to define homosexuality loosely, your conclusion that it is a problem on the same level as murder is fundamentally flawed.

    As to discrimination, you’re right. It’s unfair to say that Christians are discriminating. I’m sure some are, and some aren’t (and the ones that are may or may not have incorrect/irrational reasons to be discriminating).

    Studies have shown that homosexuality is not a choice or a preference. It is most probably a combination of genetic and environmental factors. On this point, discrimination in general against people who are homosexual (like barring them from jobs, no social support for de facto marriages etc) is unfair. It’s like discriminating against congenitally disabled people. I’m not well read enough to figure out what kind of ‘discrimination’ homosexual people are facing according to the media though.

    You forget that in a liberal Western society, morals and law are supposed to be separate. I’ll probably blog about it after the exams are over, but in a nutshell what becomes legal or illegal doesn’t have anything to do with a particular religious morality (and nor should it, if individual freedoms are to be protected).

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