“Homophobia” in the Bible – What to do about it? VBS #2

“Homophobia” in the Bible – What to do about it? VBS #2 July 13, 2015

Editor’s Note: “Andy” is an active, nonbelieving UCC pastor who leads a very liberal congregation. In his Vacation Bible School lesson, he explains how he approaches texts on homosexuality in the Bible with two different audiences: liberals and conservatives.

=======================

Vacation Bible School-300x150

By “Andy”

While preparing for presentations I’ve made in various ecclesiastical settings (both Catholic and Protestant), I had to figure out what to do with the ‘homosexuality texts’ in the Bible. From my liberal perspective, I saw a simple choice of two options to use when discussing these texts with different types of religious believers.

1) The first option is simply to discard the texts the way most Christians disregard biblical references to obvious cultural prejudices from the past. The proscription of homosexual behavior is no more valid than that against jewelry, or mixed fabric, or long hair on men. All these things are condemned in the Bible. Mary Douglas, for example, in her book Purity and Danger, does a good job of relativizing biblical rules along this line.

2) The second option is to take the texts seriously—especially when dealing with more conservative Christians—by pointing out that the kind of same-sex behaviors that are being condemned in these texts are all relationships involving one person dominating over another, whether it be a pederastic monopoly over boys or some form of sexual slavery.

Robin Scroggs, in his book New Testament and Homosexuality, has demonstrated through his meticulous research that the kind of loving and mutual relationship between equal partners of the same sex we are fighting for today has no parallel in the culture that generated the New Testament. In other words, the texts cannot be used to excoriate contemporary same-sex relationships because the texts don’t speak to consensual relationships. They speak only to inequality. One might even make the case that because the texts condemn domination, they really support—in a sense—gay marriage. To deny rights to those who have mutual love for one another is a form of domination.

Homosexuality bible

I pick and choose between the two approaches, depending on my audience. When dealing with people who are more liberal, the first approach works well. Liberals are already familiar with the notion of cultural relativity and need only to see the homosexual bias of scripture in that light. When dealing with people who are more conservative in their interpretation of scripture, the second approach works better. These people will typically cling to the presumption of biblical authority, and must be addressed in a way that assumes it. Accordingly, it is better to appear to agree with homosexual bias, but argue that the bias is really against inequality—in any relationship–not homosexuality.

This is how one modern unbeliever and heretic—ME—deals with the texts, and I have had some moderate success with both approaches.

**Editor’s Questions** How do you feel about Andy changing his approach based on his audience? How would you or have you approached homophobia with different kinds of people?

=========================

Bio:Andy,’ a former Southern Baptist Minister, is currently a Pastor in the United Church of Christ. He plans to retire in the church, despite his rejection of metaphysical speculation (God, salvation, heaven, etc.). His life has been an evolution from traditional theism, to non-theism (via Tillich and Spong), to agnosticism (via linguistic philosophy), to ‘incipient atheism’ (via secular humanism). He holds a PhD in Biblical Studies from a major American university.

>>>>>Photo credits

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I, Sailko [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html), CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/) or CC BY 2.5 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.5)], via Wikimedia Commons

“Sodoma – Aldegrever”. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons – https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Sodoma_-_Aldegrever.jpg#/media/File:Sodoma_-_Aldegrever.jpg

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  • Alicia

    What do I think about it him tailoring his message to his audience? I think he’s practicing minimal good sense and effective communication. Leave purity to the puritans.

    Now this one here:
    “the kind of loving and mutual relationship between equal partners of the same sex we are fighting for today has no parallel in the culture that generated the New Testament”
    I know what he means, and I think it is (again) effective communication. But I would prefer it be worded to leave room for the possibility that some gay individuals in the Greco Roman world managed to beat the odds and have positive mutual relationships. Just they would have been careful to not let anyone know they were doing something so unfashionable, so that the publically visible relationships that were available to pass commentary on would have been the icky kind Andy discusses.

  • Andy

    Good point Alicia. It’s quite possible that in the warp and woof of life, some individuals managed to do as you suggest. Let’s hope.

  • “the kind of loving and mutual relationship between equal partners of
    the same sex we are fighting for today has no parallel in the culture
    that generated the New Testament”

    This might be effective communication in duping conservative, yet unstudied Biblicists, but I find it hollow. Which in my case, if you need to lie to a conservative so they’ll stop hating gays…fine but tread carefully. I think this could be easily refuted by someone who has a grasp on the scriptures and context.

    I do not believe that an honest look at the Bible allows one to embrace homosexuality. I’m glad there are Christians willing to engage in cognitive dissonance to do so (!), but you have to abandon conservative hermeneutics and interpretation to do it. Essentially, the Bible has to be (and is) wrong on this subject.

  • Linda_LaScola

    I think this could be easily refuted by someone who has a grasp on the scriptures and context.

    Can you give an example of what would they say?

    And Andy — if John responds, can you tell us how you would respond to that?

  • mason

    Regarding the bible on homosexuality I use Option #1 and discard all it has to say, and treat the bizarre collection of writings, “the bible” for the ancient barbaric superstition and mythology it is. It really does have some great mythology.

    It has always amazed me that blacks or homosexuals could call themselves Christians. Always struck me somewhat akin to a Jew calling themselves a Nazi.

  • I admit that I’ve very seldom discussed exegesis of homosexuality. But the comparison that has impressed me is divorce, strangely enough. Lots of contemporary Christians seem not to raise much objection to divorces that happen for a wide range of supposed causes. Yet exegesis against divorce, for causes other than infidelity, is at least as strong as exegesis against homosexuality. If they’re convinced that they can make a solid case that people in a miserable marriage should be able to divorce, then it seems that making the biblical case for happy homosexual relationships would actually be easier.

  • Certainly

    It’s hard to get around the very explicit instructions of Moses as supposedly commanded by God.

    ‘If a man has sexual relations with a man as one does with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable. They are to be put to death; their blood will be on their own heads.

    There is nothing in here about culture, or rape, or pederasty. This is just the simple act of 2 men having sex regardless of circumstances (be it loving or monogamous).

    Christians might be tempted to say, “yeah but that’s Old Testament, we’re a New Testament people.” But there’s a problem with that argument. Who made the Old Testament law? God did. Does the Old Testament Law reflect both the will and desire of God? If you believe the Bible, then yes.

    But what’s more is that the Apostle Paul in the New Testament hits very close to the same vocabulary when he is talking about the wrath of God:

    Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. 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.

    Again not mention of what type of motivations behind the sexual act, but merely that it happened.

    Both Old and New Testaments clearly mark homosexuality as worthy of God’s wrath. Only by cherry picking or enacting cognitive dissonance can one embrace the Bible while giving a moral pass on homosexuality.

    This for me is a big reason why I reject the Bible as a moral authority. Call me weird, but I don’t think gay people deserve a death sentence because they fall in love with someone from the “wrong” gender.

  • TimfromMaine

    Mitt Romney tried the same strategy, his campaign called it ‘etch-a-sketch.’ If I remember correctly he was distrusted by nearly everyone and lost the election. Can you seriously be asking what people think of a pastor who changes tacks to suit his audience?

  • Linda_LaScola

    Romney got 47% of the vote, so your recollection is off.

    Also, pastors change their approach depending on who they are talking to all the time. It’s part of “meeting people where they are” and is considered to be good practice for anyone trying to communicate with people at different levels of understanding.

  • TimfromMaine

    Romney would have received the Republican vote if he was a chimpanzee. The reality is that neither moderates nor conservatives believed him. It’s one thing to frame an argument for a specific audience, entirely another to change it.

  • Kevin R. Cross

    To communicate a message to different audiences, it is often necessary to change one’s approach and language in order to more fully connect with the audience. Clear communication, even with a medium that is primarily one-directional, is still a two-way street – if you don’t make an emotional and logical relationship with your audience, they won’t take what you’re saying seriously.

  • Linda_LaScola

    another reality is that Romney was not distrusted by “nearly everyone” as you originally stated. I am not a Romney fan. I am a fan of not misleading people.

  • john

    This man has no right to communicate anything to anybody regarding Christianity as a bogus pastor. Let him honest first and leave the position he is not qualified to hold.

  • I came here on a whim. I am extremely conservative. I like #2.

    Here’s why. On another conservative blog today I read the concept that homosexuality harms homosexuals. The reason is because you can’t give what you don’t have, and you can’t receive what you already have.

    Every homosexual relationship I’ve ever seen has been dom-sub. Every. Single. One. Especially Lesbians.

    Perhaps there is more to be taught with homophilia than homophobia. Perhaps, taking a different tack is important.

  • TimfromMaine

    Let’s not quibble over a figure of speech. The phrase ‘credibility gap’ clung to the Romney campaign like b.o. There were a few specifics like tax returns and offshoring, but in general (I sensed) it was because he was perceived as saying one thing to conservative audiences, another to moderates. Like Andy.

    You asked how I feel about Andy changing his approach based on his audience. I think it casts a shadow over everything he says, to either audience.

  • Linda_LaScola

    He is a real pastor with advanced degrees and a long term parish that does good works in the community. One of those good works is being supportive to the gay community, so he probably wouldn’t qualify as far as you’re concerned because he doesn’t disapprove of loving homosexual relationships

  • Linda_LaScola

    Hello Theodore — thanks for visiting the blog. You base your position on one blog post and your own experience. Is that correct? And when I say “experience” I assume it’s casual observance of homosexuals and not actual sex acts.

  • More on an attempted sex act in high school nearly 30 years ago, followed by working against the Oregon Christian Coalition to get Civil Unions passed here, only to have the homosexual movement turn and attack us in March 2004 when gay marriage reared its ugly head and 11 years of disproportionately violent culture war since. I’m actually pretty ok with dom-sub homosexuality, as long as they don’t attack MY rights as a heterosexual parent (as Justice Kennedy’s majority opinion in Obergefell did, directly. Now every biological father has to fear losing his parental rights- because the presumption of paternity has been removed from marriage).

    Any attempt to reconcile parent-based traditional families and the sexual revolution at this point seems very much a non-starter to me. There is too much violence that has been done on both sides. Still, if we care- if we are truly the Christians Christ made us to be- we must try, even though we will surely fail.

    Leaving people to be consumed by Satan and Sin, as the culture war has done, is not an option.

  • After the last 11 years, I no longer believe in the concept of “loving homosexual relationships”. You can’t give what you don’t have, you can’t receive what you already have.

  • john

    An education and good works is not a sufficient to be a pastor of a Christian Church. You actually have to be a Christian. I should have thought that was blindingly obvious.

  • Makoto

    Some of my closest friends are gay, so by going to parties and such with them, I’ve interacted with a lot of homosexual couples. Some are definitely dom-sub. Others are partnerships. Others are harder to describe.

    Really, I could tell little difference between how they interacted and how heterosexual couples did – I’ve seen the same dom-sub, partnership, and other setups in those as well.

    All that said, is there something wrong with a dom-sub relationship?

  • I’ll leave judgement to others, but why are you bigoted against the other 98% of humanity?

  • Makoto

    Er.. I’m not sure what you mean by the 98% comment. I’m guessing heterosexual population? If so, I’m in that number, so it’d be weird to be bigoted against myself. I have no idea what the numbers are for dom-sub relationships, that’s why I’m simply guessing that you mean heterosexual, but please correct me if I’m mistaken there.

    Mostly was trying to point out that I’ve seen plenty of non-dom-sub relationships, in both homo- and heterosexual pairings.

  • Ok, I took your “my best friends are gay” comment wrong. I thought it’s pretty strange that you go to gay parties and not straight ones, or maybe have no heterosexual friends who see Obergefell as affecting their marriages.

  • john

    You were doing well until the last paragraph. The Old Testament Law still stands but we are now under grace and not under law. In other words we have the opportunity to confess our sins and be forgiven. Sin is not confined to homosexuals we are all sinners and the wages of sin is death but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. The real problem is when we decide the sin is not sin and start to be proud of it, flaunt it, promote it and revel in it. Then we are indeed in danger of God’s wrath.

  • Makoto

    Why would it be strange that straight folks also attend parties with their gay friends? Their parties, like “straight” parties, are a mixture of gay and straight people, and I’ve been to plenty of both, not sure why that would be strange. Celebrating birthdays and such seems pretty normal.

    And no, I have no heterosexual friends who see Obergefell as affecting their marriages. Plenty of heterosexual and married friends, though, in case you were wondering.

    So, was the 98% thing about homosexuality? Still curious.

  • 2.5% of the human race is homosexual, according to the Center for Disease Control. If a greater percentage of your friends are gay than that, then it might indicate a bias on your part.

    Obergefell directly removed the presumption of paternity. I’ve yet to meet anybody who wasn’t a conservative who was concerned about that; mainly because liberals already want the State to raise their children with different values than have been traditionally held, and while biological paternity of the mother is pretty obvious and automatic, severing the legal biological paternity of the father makes sense for trying to destroy the family, which is also something that the extreme left has been working on since the early 1960s and thus is nothing for them to worry about.

  • Makoto

    Let me put it this way – I have a friend who is really heavily into real time strategy video games, though I’m terrible at them and don’t enjoy playing them. We share other interests, so we’re friends. But, as it happens, many of his other friends are also real time strategy video game fans as well, due to their shared interests. If I went to a party with him, I’d expect to encounter a large number of strategy game fans, and a few others like me.

    The group of homosexual couples that you encountered all had dom-sub relationships. Mine didn’t. It’s not a bias to be introduced to a larger sample size, it’s just the way life works out sometimes. I suppose it’s kind of like how someone living in the desert is very unlikely to see a redwood tree, yet I have visited forests of them.

  • Asemodeus

    Wrong. The percent of OPENLY gay Americans is 2.5%. Read the study, that is if you are literate enough. They could only poll those Americans that were confident enough to answer honestly, which isn’t all of them. Since being openly gay in some areas of this country would get them killed by people like seeber.

  • Or so claims Hollywood. The rest of us live in the real world where the only gays being killed are ones that cheat other gays out of their drug money.

  • Partial Mitch
  • Asemodeus
  • Partial Mitch

    You should probably actually get to know some people on “the left” if you think we want to “destroy the family” … because we don’t. Many of us (maybe even most of us) are very dedicated parents, and suggestions like yours are way off base. I’ve never heard anyone on the left say anything along those lines, although I hear plenty of righties spout that nonsense.

    We also don’t want the state to raise our children. But we don’t want the State teaching our kids about religious traditions we do not believe in. To put it another way: How much do Baptist parents want their children to be taught that Mormonism is correct?

    They don’t. Which is why it is best to leave religion out of school.

    Nobody is stopping anyone from teaching their kids whatever they feel like teaching them. Just leave it at home. It is not the business of secular organizations to promote any religious agenda. It is wrong when it is called sharia, it is wrong when it is called Judeo-Christian tradition.

    How does Obergefell remove the presumption of paternity?

    Biological parents would still be responsible, just as absentee fathers can be held responsible today. Paternity tests can be court ordered, if need be. Adoptive parents, step-parents, etc., will be just as responsible as they are today (some will fail miserably, but that holds true whether they are straight, gay or celibate).

    How does Obergefell affect straight peoples marriages? At all? In any way?

    It doesn’t.

    Does your neighbor’s divorce affect your marriage? Does your neighbor’s interracial marriage affect your marriage? Does your Christian neighbor’s marriage to a Jew affect your marriage?

    No. Not at all. These issues may all violate your religious beliefs (with Biblical support for your point of view) but they do not actually affect your marriage or life at all.

    You simply think that other people should conform to your belief. You are wrong about that.

    Finally, I will ask this: Who made you the Guardian of Tradition? What right do you have to tell other people how to live their lives?

    There are dozens of Christian denominations that support equal rights for our LGBT friends ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LGBT-affirming_Christian_denominations ).

    What gives you the right to tell them what to believe? What makes your denomination the one that gets to rule the world?

  • I’m not allowed to doubt hate crime terrorism?

  • I have my doubts about invented thoughtcrime.

  • Dys

    Thankfully, the existence of such relationships is not dependent on your limited imagination and biases.

  • Love begets life. One would need to rewrite the physical laws of biology to change that. Let me know when you do.

  • Partial Mitch

    You’re allowed to doubt what you want, but claiming that the “only” murder of homosexuals is due to drugs is both disingenuous and counterfactual. Sources:

    https://www.fbi.gov/news/stories/2014/december/latest-hate-crime-statistics-report-released

    http://www.splcenter.org/the-anti-gay-lobby-the-family-research-council-the-american-family-association-the-demonization-of–3

    To quote the Southern Poverty Law Center: “The figures show that gay people are 2.4 times more likely to suffer a violent hate crime attack than Jews (8.3 divided by 3.5). In the same way, gay people are 2.6 times more likely to be attacked than blacks; 4.4 times more likely than Muslims; and 13.8 times more likely than Latinos…”

    Opinions do not trump facts.

  • The Southern Poverty Law Center is a known terrorist organization from my point of view. They make up statistics all the time to prove that everybody else in the world is wrong and they are right.

  • Dys

    It’s nice that you’ve decided your arrogance is capable of defining things out of existence so you don’t have to acknowledge them. I imagine it’s quite convenient for you.

  • Partial Mitch

    Do you also consider the FBI “terrorists”? If so … you have issues and need to seek counseling.

    Too bad that many, many other sources also report the same data.

    Hell, even the conservative-leaning Washington Post and the super-conservative Fox News both accept the studies. You know you’re in a bad spot when Fox News is closer to reality than your opinion.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2014/04/15/five-charts-on-hate-groups-and-hate-crime-in-the-u-s/

    http://www.foxnews.com/entertainment/2014/10/01/gay-gun-activists-growing-lgbt-push-to-support-second-amendment/

    By the way, the word terrorism has a definition. Learn it, before you begin calling organizations by that adjective. Last time I checked, Christians weren’t supposed bear false witness.

    ter·ror·ism
    ˈterəˌrizəm/
    noun
    noun: terrorism
    the use of violence and intimidation in the pursuit of political aims.

  • Steven

    The Bible is clear on this sin. People continue to suppress the truth in unrighteousness

  • Dys

    You actually have to be a Christian.

    And yet this is demonstrably untrue.

    The Clergy Project exists for a reason – the issue is not as simple as “well, I don’t believe in God any more, so I’ll just ditch everything I’ve been involved with for the last x number of years”.

  • Cognissive Disco Dance

    The problem being, you have no way of showing us that your god isn’t the absurd fantasy that it looks like. And your frustration about that is showing in spades.

  • mason

    “Every homosexual relationship I’ve ever seen has been dom-sub” Then you need to see and a whole lot more and then look much more closely and you’ll see they’re just as complex as heterosexual relationships with who is dom or sub, or equal combatants 🙂 depending on the situation.

    Nothing can be said to be more of a model for the hard core dom-sub relationship than the biblical man-wife scenario.

  • mason

    “Liberals want to destroy the family”…that one made me chuckle out loud. The Divorce rate is highest among conservatives and especially high among protestant conservatives. http://www.christianpost.com/news/divorce-rate-higher-in-counties-with-more-conservative-protestants-study-says-113392/

    I’ve never met or heard about a liberal who wanted the State to raise their child. You do sound extremely conservative…:)

  • john

    You cannot be Christ’s representative if you don’t believe He exists. To pretend otherwise is to lie and deceive. The matter of having to change career is quite separate issue. Tough but why should clergy get special treatment.

  • john

    And your reply to Steven only demonstrates the empty mockery of a lost soul

  • Cognissive Disco Dance

    To pretend otherwise is to lie and deceive.

    Yeah but they’re still pastors of a Christian Church. To pretend otherwise is to deny the obvious. Thar’s why Dys said “And yet this is demonstrably untrue.”

  • Your American conservatives are fiscal liberals. There are no conservatives with political power in the Americanist heresy.

  • Dys

    You cannot be Christ’s representative if you don’t believe He exists.

    Meh – just tell yourself that God can use people to his own ends regardless of whether they believe in him or not.

    To pretend otherwise is to lie and deceive.

    Yeah, there’s a deception going on…I don’t think anyone’s really denying that part.

    The matter of having to change career is quite separate issue.

    Except it’s not a separate issue at all, and it’s hardly as simple as changing careers. Like I said, there’s a reason the Clergy Project exists.

    Tough but why should clergy get special treatment.

    Uh, there’s no law being broken. They’re not getting special treatment.

  • john

    You are wrong, they are not pastors of a Christian church they are charlatans posing as pastors.

  • Dys

    But since it was in reply to an empty (and ignorant) religious assertion, it was an appropriate response.

  • john

    You really are an unprincipled lot aren’t you. Yes God uses people but I am talking about someone who purports to be a representative of Christ when they are clearly not. Lying and deceiving in the name of Christ is OK with you then?
    If the cleric is honest and genuinely an unbeliever then the honourable thing to do is to step down not cling on for the sake of appearances or the money. The Clergy Project seems to exist just to make their consciences a bit easier. Shame on you all you will face the judgement

  • Dys

    You really are an unprincipled lot aren’t you.

    Nope, we’ve got principles. We also have empathy and try to understand situations instead of ignorantly chastising people.

    Lying and deceiving in the name of Christ is OK with you then

    The “in the name of Christ” bit is completely irrelevant. In a perfect world, the continued deception would not be necessary. But this isn’t a perfect world.

    If the cleric is honest and genuinely an unbeliever then the honourable
    thing to do is to step down not cling on for the sake of appearances or
    the money.

    That’s an easy thing to say, but when one’s identity, social structure, and livelihood are inextricably tied to their job, it’s nowhere near as easy or as feasible as you want to believe.

    The Clergy Project seems to exist just to make their consciences a bit easier.

    Then you demonstrably don’t know what you’re talking about. But since you’re intent on defining everything in black and white terms, you’re not going to get the point.

    Shame on you all you will face the judgement

    Your imagined torture porn scenarios have no basis in reality.

  • Dessany

    So we are slaves to our biology? Lovely theology you have there.

  • Yes, indeed, we are slaves to our biology- just as we are slaves to the laws of physics. Why do you have a problem with reality?

  • Dessany

    But it’s not to just make their consciences a bit easier. These are real people with real lives. They are not playing a game. Lives and not just their own can and have been devastated by telling the truth of what they now believe to family, friends, and parishioners.

    It is not unprincipled to look at all the effects of telling the truth. It is not unprincipled to continue with their position while determining what the fall-out will be of telling the truth. We don’t know how old Andy is. If he is nearing retirement, it is a principled decision to decide to continue with his position till retirement. It may not be the same for someone younger.

    What is unprincipled is to make a blanket condemnation of someone you know nothing about regarding one single absolute moral rule about lying with no concern over the real lives of all the people involved.

  • Dessany

    I have no problem with reality. But reality is more than just the reality of part A fitting into part B. Reality is also about our complex brains which allow us to have much more fulfilling lives.

    I’m sorry your theology has so limited your thinking. You put love and compassion towards other people below your dogma. Fortunately, we have learned more about reality than the bronze age that produced your theology.

  • “Reality is also about our complex brains which allow us to have much more fulfilling lives.”

    That is just illusion, it is not reality. That is only a hallucination.

    I do not accept drug experimentation as “reality”, nor fantasies that exist only in the brain.

  • john

    Weasel words from one who’s conscience is numbed by compromise. In the “name of Christ” means everything. My old pastor used to say “godlessness always leads to immorality”. How right he was!

  • Dessany

    So modern science is now “drug experimentation” and “fantasies that exist only in the brain”. What a silly response.

    It is a fact that we now know more about ourselves and the world then the people of 2,000 to 3,000 years ago. We live in an exciting age. Every day we learn more and more about ourselves and the universe we live in.

    I’m sorry for all the people in this world who are missing out on the wondrous things we are learning due to being stuck in a theology based on a 2,000 to 3,000 year old view of the world.

    As I said before, your theology has limited your thinking and limited your ability to feel love and compassion for other people. Judgmentalism keeps you from seeing the reality of people around you. I’m sorry for you.

  • Freud was a drug addict. The entire so-called “science” that came from his research still shows signs of abuse of both human beings and controlled substances.

    Calling that science is ridiculous.

  • Dessany

    My old pastor used to say “godlessness always leads to immorality”. How right he was!

    How wrong he was! How immoral to condemn a whole group of people on one characteristic. Morality has nothing to do with either believing in a god or not believing in a god.

    There is no real world correlation between believing in a god and being moral. In fact, we have seen religious beliefs doing real harm.

    Compromise is how we live in diverse communities without conflict. It’s inflexible attitudes that lead to conflict.

  • Dessany

    Sigismund Schlomo Freud; 6 May 1856 – 23 September 1939)

    Freud is not the totality of psychology. You might want to try reading up on the current science instead of relying on your rather biased view of Freud.

  • Linda_LaScola

    FYI: “Nearly everybody” is not a figure of speech. And thanks for addressing your opinion of Andy changing his approach based on his audience.

  • Linda_LaScola

    Like any developing science, there have been many advances since the time of Freud. He was a pioneer, but hardly the last word on understanding the human mind.

  • All the current “science” is philosophically based on Freud, the father of psychoanalysis.

    And it’s all flawed because it is based on lies.

  • Dessany

    Actually it’s not at all philosophically based on Freud. The science has changed radically from Freud due to relying on things like evidence and peer review. Even if it were based on lies it would have still changed radically due to using the scientific method.

    Now there is an argument to be made that the softer sciences such as psychology are subject to less rigorous methodology than the harder sciences which has led to some questionable results. But that requires actually knowing the subject you are talking about and I don’t think either of us are up to that level of knowledge.

  • Dys

    Weasel words from one who’s conscience is numbed by compromise.

    In other words, you’re just going to keep shouting “Everything is black or white!”, ignore the points I made, and pretend a complex situation is inanely simple so you can pretend at moral superiority.

    In the “name of Christ” means everything.

    It doesn’t mean anything more than what you put into it. Considering Jesus was an apocalyptic Jewish preacher who died quite a long time ago, I don’t see any reason it should carry much weight.

  • Dys

    I agree, that commandment/thoughtcrime about coveting doesn’t really hold up.

  • Dys

    Reality – you don’t have the ability to restrict the human emotion of love only to relationships you approve of. So stop trying.

  • Without mind reading and recording technology, there is zero objective evidence. It is all anecdotal at best.

    And thus imaginary.

  • Dys

    Ted has a tendency to resort to ad hominem attacks against people he doesn’t like. He tried to do the same thing on another blog in regards to Nietzsche, and was quickly smacked down.

  • Dessany

    Ah, lol, I see you are into the Ken Ham variety of response. “Were you there?”

  • Dessany

    I see that. It’s sad to see someone with their thinking and emotions stunted by such severe religious beliefs.

  • Dys

    Different approaches work for different audiences. Providing different ways of interpreting something doesn’t necessarily undermine the message.

  • Dessany

    Interesting. Are you British? What is the Americanist heresy?

  • Applestar

    And that applies to the Bible just as much!

  • Applestar

    Or women. There’s not much to love about the Bible if you’re female.

  • Reality- you have no reason to force your anecdotal based religion on other people.

  • Yes, it does. Which is why I am against using the Bible instead of biology to fight homosexuality.

  • Applestar

    Um, isn’t that the actual basis of Christianity? Given the lack of contemporary sources, it’s all just anecdotes written down considerably later?

  • Applestar

    That’s an excellent start! So now, we can look at science, and see that the natural world has a wide range of sexual preferences, including homosexuality, so there is nothing inherently wrong with it. Except, if I follow your argument correctly, paternal rights. Is this correct?

  • Dys

    Since I don’t have a religion, your reply is fairly vapid. I’m not forcing anything on anyone – in fact, just the opposite. I’m pointing out that you don’t have the ability to force your inane beliefs about what gets to qualify as love on anyone else.

    All you’re doing is using a customized, biased definition of what constitutes “real” love so you can define it out of existence for relationships you don’t like.

  • Andy

    Well said Dessany. Thank you! I used to be in John’s camp; I used to say that there should be an ‘open season on fags’. Now I am incredibly horrified I ever spewed such hatred.. Like you, I came to see that morality had little to do with theism.

  • Dys

    Those don’t count. Ancient unverifiable anecdotes of your chosen religion, especially those of a supernatural or miraculous nature, get a free pass. Because reasons.

    /sarcasm

  • Andy

    Exactly! “I have become all things to all people so that I might win some”–The Apostle Paul
    Ironically, he too was accused of being two-faced, saying one thing to one crowed and another to a different crowd.

  • Andy

    Granted–the biblical proscription of homosexuality does not specify what kind of behavior is involved; that’s why historical evidence from the time must be consulted–specifically proscriptions against homosexuality outside of the Bible. In those sources there is only evidence for the one-sided, non-consensual dominion of one person over another. Hence it seems likely that the biblical proscriptions mirror their times.
    I do like your last paragraph, and that’s why in my own thinking the best response is my #1–the biblical proscriptions represent cultural prejudices of the time, just like the tacit approval of slavery and the many sentiments against women.

  • Dys

    It’s basically a heresy that American culture is compatible with Catholicism. It’s a complaint that Catholicism in America is too liberalized. It was also in part a complaint against the separation of church and state, which was hardly surprising given the decline in power of the Vatican.

    http://catholicism.org/americanism-heresy.html

  • Dessany

    The internet has been hard on religious morality claims. I used to accept that religions were sources of moral knowledge. Now, with all the information available at the tips of my fingers on a keyboard, I can clearly see just how wrong those claims are.

    Congratulations on your growth and good luck with your life. It is incredibly hard to make such changes in your life.

  • Andy

    Whew!!! This has certainly brought some strong feelings to the surface! John and Theodore seem particularly incensed that there are clergy out there who espouse a strongly divergent viewpoint. I agree with a comment made earlier that ad hominem attacks are not helpful. Name-calling, blanket judgments, and attributions of malicious motivation serve only to put others off. They don’t help people understand each other. And the world really needs understanding right now!
    Aside from this, my major contention with conservatives is the underlying a priori basis of their arguments, the assumption of the divine origin of the Bible, and hence its absolute authority. All arguments based on ‘what the Bible says’ are logical fallacies, begging an unproven premise. Theists ultimately resort to ‘faith’, which tends to be a euphemism for belief without evidence. It is far easier to ‘prove’ the human origin of the Bible than its divine origin. I wasted years trying to do the latter, all to no avail. Ultimately I came to see that all my arguments could be reduced to an unproven faith in the divinity of scripture. I pulled faith out of my pocket as my good luck charm in order to slay my opponents. I finally had enough of that. I don’t do that anymore.
    I appeal to all people of good conscience: let’s try to be understanding of–and gracious to–each other.

  • Andy

    Glad you brought that up. Like so many other liberal pastors, I prefer the label ‘disciple of Jesus, the sage of Nazareth’. In my opinion, Christianity has only done havoc to the teachings of Jesus.

  • Andy

    Thank you Dessany!

  • Andy

    The Bible is also clear on wearing mixed fabrics and sowing two different kinds of seed in the same field.

  • Dessany

    Thank you. That article is very interesting in how the attitudes are much the same from the conservatives even over a century ago. It seems like the term “Americanism” has been replaced with “Cafeteria Catholics”. They seem to be complaining about the same type of issues.

  • john

    You, like so many, have a fixation about homosexuality. I wasn’t condemning anybody over one characteristic in fact I can find a whole host of immoralities to condemn if I so choose. Dys has admitted his willingness to sanction lies and deceit. Let me tell you how the God you don’t think exists sees it. According to Him, He is the only one who can decide what is moral and what is not. Your home made morality is worthless in his eyes. So lets forget God and now we have you to tell us whats moral and what’s not, except of course that maybe somebody else has a different view. O dear that would mean conflict wouldn’t it and we can’t have that. Don’t you see where your moral relativism gets you? My old pastor was dead right.

  • Christianity yes. Catholicism no. That was Martin Luther ‘ s argument, “anecdotes are enough, why do we need more than scripture?”.

  • john

    This Andy, in the article above has no scruples about saying one thing to one audience and something different to another for expediency. It is perfectly possible to quietly step down from a position you know you should not have. It’s not necessary to make a fanfare out of it. No I don’t know this man or his circumstances and in a post like this I can only go so far as saying the obvious, if you are not a believer you should not be a pastor.

  • Dessany

    Let me tell you how the God you don’t think exists sees it. According to Him…

    It’s nice that you know what God thinks. Unfortunately, so do all the other theists in the world and they don’t all come to the same conclusions as to God’s opinion. In fact, looking at just homosexuality, they come to opposing conclusions. So now what?

    You and other theists are in the same exact same place non-theists are with respect to morals. We all have to work out our morals with our human brains, together.

    We have developed quite the moral and ethical framework over the time we have been human. It started slow. We used to believe slavery was acceptable. Now we don’t. Your bible still has rules for owning slaves in it. We have moved past the biblical morality on slavery and almost every Christian today doesn’t accept the bible’s statements on owning slaves.

    What a good thing our unbiblical “moral relativism” is more moral than the old-fashioned biblical moral absolutism of the civil war era.

    All those Christians defending slavery with the bible were wrong. Just as all the Christians defending homophobia with the bible are wrong today.

  • Dys

    Yeah, that was basically the impression I got. The only difference I can see is that Americanism is seen more as an attempt to change the church itself, whereas Cafeteria Catholics pick and choose the dogmas they accept without particularly caring about church doctrines on those they don’t.

  • Dys

    Dys has admitted his willingness to sanction lies and deceit.

    Actually, I didn’t say that at all. I didn’t sanction lying or deceit; I stated that I understand the situation (far better than you, apparently), and that I realize the complexity of it far outpaces your simplistic view of it and your clumsy absolutist “solution”.

    My old pastor was dead right.

    Hardly. Morality isn’t derived from religion or any god, it precedes it. What’s truly funny is that you can’t actually demonstrate that the bible’s claimed morality is objective either. It could be just another of your dreaded relativistic moralities. You’re in the exact same boat you imagine we’re stuck in.

    There’s also the possibility that objective morality (not absolute morality) is a reality without the need for a deity, but that’s a lengthy debate. Philosopher Dan Fincke has a blog on Patheos discussing the topic in much detail.

    http://www.patheos.com/blogs/camelswithhammers/

  • john

    I will have to go in a minute but a final word. Nowhere in the Bible is slavery encouraged, all references to it are there to moderate the behaviour of slave owners in a society where slavery was normal. You are blaming the Bible for slavery when you should be blaming humans for using the Bible to support their own wickedness. We can blame the Bible for apartheid too since it was used as the justification in the same way. As to homosexuality we don’t need the Bible to tell us that this wrong it’s obvious. But there you go again with your fixation screaming homophobia at every opportunity. The truth is I have nothing against anybody with such unfortunate sexual disorders, but those who promote encourage revel in and are proud of sinful behaviour, whatever it is, will face judgement.

  • Dessany

    But there you go again with your fixation screaming homophobia at every opportunity.

    I don’t have a fixation with homophobia or homosexuality. I have a fixation with civil rights. It’s the conservative religious who have a fixation with the sex lives of other people.

    You are blaming the Bible for slavery when you should be blaming humans for using the Bible to support their own wickedness.

    Maybe God should have been more clear about what he wanted in his book. Look at how many people have mistaken ideas about what the bible says about morality.

    Amazing thing, it’s only when the culture changes on issues of morality like slavery that religious people look back at what was so clear in an earlier era and determine that the bible doesn’t say what it clearly says and that it’s just the people who misread the bible who are wicked and wrong.

  • john

    Well in my experience, real Christians, those that hold and adhere to Christian values live better and more fruitful lives than those that don’t. Markedly so. That is an observable fact.

  • Dessany

    I stated that I understand the situation (far better than you, apparently), and that I realize the complexity of it far outpaces your simplistic view of it and your clumsy absolutist “solution”.

    This is the really awful part of the morality john is pushing. There is a lack of love and compassion for people in the real situations they are living in.

    There is no attempt at understanding, just an “aha, gotcha” type of judgmentalism that harms not just the people they are attacking but family, friends, and co-workers.

    They divide people against each other on things that are so trivial. Who cares who anyone falls in love with as long as it’s an adult consensual relationship?

  • Dys

    Of course, the inherent subjectivity of who qualifies as a “true” Christian coupled with the necessity of ignorance on the part of other people’s lives renders this anecdote relatively useless. You’re effectively cherry-picking your data set.

  • Dessany

    Then why is it that the more religious a society the worse their lives are? The statistics go against your anecdotal “evidence”. There is more divorce, teenage pregnancies, and other such problems in religious states and countries than in more secular states and countries.

  • Dessany

    Definitely, it seems modern American Catholics have decided to ignore the hierarchy rather than change it for the most part. Conservatives may have won the war over the hierarchy for the most part, (Though it will be interesting to see what happens with the current pope.) but they haven’t won over the hearts and minds of most of the laity.

  • Dys

    Morality was actually one of the main issues I had with Christianity when I was a believer. The bible generally doesn’t actually bother explaining why something is moral or immoral, it just provides dictates. And I think there’s a definitive dividing line between morality and obedience. “Because God said so” isn’t compelling or informative.

  • Dys

    You are blaming the Bible for slavery when you should be blaming humans for using the Bible to support their own wickedness.

    Slavery is so incredibly wicked and evil that God, in his omnipotence and omnibenevolence….didn’t bother banning it, and established rules for how to do it the “right” way, despite the fact that owning other people as property is immoral and that there isn’t a right way to do it.

    I’ve yet to receive a good answer as to why God bothered wasting multiple commandments on his ego, yet couldn’t find the time to say “thou shalt not own other people as property”. There’s plenty of terrible excuses given, and the inevitable dishonest revisionism of stating that it was really indentured servitude, but no actual answer. Just “Mysterious Ways”.

  • Steven

    Those laws were specifically for the Israelites. And they were fulfilled when Jesus died on the cross.

  • Dessany

    So true. How hard is it for an omnipotent, omniscient god to make a clear and simple statement about the morality of owning people instead of

    all references to it are there to moderate the behaviour of slave owners in a society where slavery was normal.

    apparently, it’s just too hard for poor god to be clear about his moral rules.

  • Andy

    Jewelry and braided hair condemned in 1 Peter?
    Silence of women in the churches in 1 Corinthians?
    Obedience of slaves to masters in Ephesians?

  • busterggi

    And then there’s Daniel and Jonathan…

  • busterggi

    So just where did Jesus say cherry-picking was okay?

  • Steven

    I Peter didn’t condemn jewelry and braided. The text just says do not let your beauty be external. In other words your beauty should not come from outward appearance. During the Biblical days men and women sat on opposite sides of the church so women would interrupt the service to ask there husbands questions during the service. 1 Corinthians didn’t mean absolute silence since in 1 Corinthians 11:4 women was allowed to pray and prophecy. Study slavery in the Bible. It wasn’t at all like the African Slave trade that we know of.

  • Steven

    How is it cherry picking? The Old Testament laws was specifically for the Israelites to separate them from the other nations.

  • Actually, when we look at the natural world, we don’t see that other species have a wide range of sexual preferences, EXCEPT IN SPECIES SPECIFICALLY BRED TO DO SO.

  • Andy

    peritheseos in 3:3 does mean jewelry and emplokes does mean braiding, in conjunction with hair. If the command were just a general nod to inward beauty, then these two commands would not have been needed.

    I have studied Roman slavery in the Bible, and it was no less immoral and repugnant than African slavery.

    The place of women in the earliest churches is a very complex matter. What eventually emerged as ‘orthodox Xnty’ did in fact relegate women to a lesser status. That was not so in gnostic Xnty, whose canon was expunged by emergent Catholicism. The biblical commands to ‘submission’ in the three household codes (Haustafeln) of the NT (Ephesians, Colossians and 1 Peter) clearly place women on a lesser status. In the pastoral epistles, clearly post-Pauline, teaching and leadership positions are restricted to men.

    I agree that in some of the Pauline churches, there may have been a degree of variance from the norm; however, by the time the post-Pauline books of Eph, Col and 1 Peter were written, that clearly was not the case.

    It occurs to me that your reasoning, which I respect, verges on the a priori comment I made in anther blog entry earlier. Because the Bible is divinely inspired, and therefore must agree in its teachings, all seeming evidence to the contrary must have a different explanation. That’s the part I can’t accept. It’s called special pleading.

    For me, divine revelation cannot be demonstrated, so I am not obliged to see it as a unified document, communicated by a supreme being. The Bible was written by many humans over the course of 1000 years. It is full of internal contradictions and theologies. I like some of it; I absolutely abhor other parts of it. Moreover, the transmission of the text gives evidence of scribal tampering, clearly an attempt to skew the original meaning of the text. Since we are at opposite ends of the spectrum on this, neither you nor I will be convinced by the other. But thanks for your response. I do appreciate it.

  • Steven

    Ok. You have a good day sir.

  • Andy

    Thank you for your conversation and interest. And thank you for keeping it objective, avoiding character assassination or forecasts of hell. You are an honorable debater. You have a splendid day as well, sir.

  • Otto

    Any citation for a terrorist act by them or do we just have to take your word that they are terrorist.

    BTW, the Catholic Church IS a known crime organization.

  • The attack on the Family Research Council, engineered by the Southern Poverty Law Center.

  • Cognissive Disco Dance

    Yeaahhhh I figured I was wrong. Current score: Internet: eleventy million. Me: zero.

  • Theletterderp

    Just a heads up to anyone arguing facts with this guy. He actively makes things up, and gets zero information from factual background. Pretty much everything he says is just things he believes with no real basis other than himself. He started losing an argument elsewhere and started screaming about how somehow gay marriage takes away his rights as a parent, and could in no way back it up, so he just kept saying it. This is a just plain silly individual and speaking with him is a lot like if you took Cleverbot and made it incredibly racist, sexist and homophobic. It goes on forever and starts looping when you stump it.

  • Theletterderp

    98% is a made up percentage, brought to you by Theodore.
    It’s closer to 96% though, that’s people that identify as gay. In a world where some countries outright put you to death for identifying as gay, and in the ones where that isn’t the law, violence toward gays is quite common, even here, despite the fact that you claim that it doesn’t happen because apparently anything that hasn’t happened to you hasn’t happened.

    It’s getting better here, but in plenty of the world, which you obviously have no experience of, it’s a different story entirely.

    The -REAL- estimated population percentage to be gay is… 20%!~

    In countries with more human rights, such as the US the amount sits at around 10% .

    No one’s being bigoted towards heterosexuals by the way. No hetero rights are being infringed upon, despite your claim that they’re magically effecting your fatherhood because you can’t tell your son that fags are bad. Hell, you can even still do that, they just happen to have even more opportunity to decide for themselves and realize that their father is not always right now.

  • Theletterderp

    I do like that he describes nothing but how he’s been actively trying to infringe upon other peoples’ rights, and his own violence towards the gay community that’s been going on for thirty years, and then calls it an attack when despite 30 years of bigotry and spite on his part, the entire US shows him how little attention they’ve paid to him.

    Also this bit about losing his rights as a father makes me lul so hard. It’s like, the epitomy of an example of him just making things up and trying to make them real by saying them over and over.

    But that’s all coming from a person that says that dictionaries are a government conspiracy soo.. Can’t expect much.

  • Otto

    That’s not a citation…what weapons did they use? Do you have a link?

  • I backed it up with your own words you do not think that Parenthood has anything to do with marriage. That is why your fantasy world must be opposed.

  • I am sure your once gay always gay rape and bully squad wishes that were true.

  • Theletterderp

    Lolol. The things you make up just gets more silly as you get backed into a corner.

  • Theletterderp

    So.. Your backing up what you’re saying with your own opinion on the matter, which is based on a fantasy world in which someone is taking away your children because of gay marriage. Dat logic. Don’t ever play a video game, or read a real book, yo. You might spend the next thirty years protesting Ganon taking over hyrule and call it a bigoted attack when they come out with the next zelda.

  • No, I’m backing up what I’m saying with YOUR restated opinion that parenthood has nothing to do with marriage- which is a heterophobic, bigoted attack on parents.

    Tell me, why weren’t Civil Unions good enough? Because you wanted to destroy the family, that’s why.

  • No, just identifying a bully of the same type that tried to rape me in high school.

  • Linda_LaScola

    If a girl had tried the same thing, would you think all girls were rapists?

  • A girl did try the same thing, and yes, it screwed up my perception of women for the next 14 years of my life.

    Actions have consequences. Using bullying tactics to make your point and dehumanize your opponent will cause casualties.

  • Theletterderp

    Except you’re not backing up anything. Just saying you’re backing up your statements doesn’t actually mean you are you know. You can say you’re not driving the car all you want, but if you’re in the car driving down the road, you’re driving the car.
    Literally the only person trying to attack anyone here is you as you openly admit to having apparently dedicated your life to failing at doing.
    Parenthood has never had anything to do with marriage, and for the sake of your argument since you don’t believe in dictionaries or education due to believing them to be government conspiracies, as you have openly admitted, even if it did in your make believe world, seperation of the two has done nothing to change the fact that you spat your baby batter into a woman. Marriage is not a prerequisite for having children and never has been. Thus single parents.
    If CPS is kicking down your door to take your children away, it isn’t because of the gays trying to vacuum up all the babies. It’s because you’re a bad parent.

  • Theletterderp

    Obviously someone abused you as a child, that’s a fact. But sadly, you have to be the victim to be bullied. It’s just a fight when you start it and just because you’re losing it and throwing a fit doesn’t change the way things are.

  • For YOUR religion parenthood has never had anything to do with marriage. That is why this is YOU forcing YOUR religion onto the rest of the world.

  • Theletterderp

    Looking at him too long constitutes as rape. He is nearly raped several times a day, thus you can understand all the hate. What with all the almost rape this man has to deal with on a daily basis. This poor man is a victim, don’t you understand? Why won’t anyone leave him alone to shout sexist racist and homophobic things at people? All he wants is to crush equality, remove all the gays, and oppress women, and the world just keeps on attacking him D:

  • Theletterderp

    Are you just on crack? Do you just type things and the random words are somehow falling into sentences? The fact that you think that you have to be married to have kids means that rape victims have to marry their rapists. You have such a childish understanding of the world around you that it hurts to talk to you. You don’t understand the basic implications of the made up things you want to be real, which is the problem with making things up and trying to force them on the world around you.
    No ones forcing anything on anyone anymore. That’s the entire point of the matter. No one took your rights away because you have no special magical rights that exist solely because you’re married other than the right to lose your kids to your spouse in case of divorce.
    You cannot explain your rights you’re losing, you can’t explain anything you say, you just keep saying the same thing over and over and ignoring anything said to you otherwise.

    You need to get a grip on reality. I’m pretty much done here. You’re either a troll, and you’ve got a severe stability or drug issue you need to work out.

  • “The fact that you think that you have to be married to have kids means that rape victims have to marry their rapists.”

    Or to be more exact, that a rapist may have only ONE victim, and in so doing, becomes not a rapist because any man is restricted to sex with only ONE woman.

    Which, oddly enough, is exactly the way tribal societies around the world handled rape for thousands of years before your sexual revolution freed men from the responsibility for their actions- that is, encouraged the growth of a rape culture, in which sex, marriage, and parenthood is all separated chaotically with no responsibility and no sense of shame.

  • Theletterderp

    ^ HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA- Still had the page up when this one came through.
    Oh man. Well, now the women know who not to go to parties with.
    ‘Hey there baby, I like you and I’ma rape you, an’ keep rapin’ you forever’.
    You sure are cultured Theodore.
    Please stay away from human society before you pick who you’re going to marry and rape her pregnant.
    ‘I want to change the definition of marriage to let me rape a chick as much as I want and force her to be my wife’
    On that one I’m out though. At this point I don’t think we’re going to top the rediculousness. that’s like, too precious. You should be forced to wear that comment on a T-shirt Theo.

  • Exactly. There is zero reason for any woman to date, let alone go home with from a party, any man not willing to get engaged.

    All contraception does is make relationships WORSE, not better.

  • Linda_LaScola

    Do you think all girls are rapists as a result of your one experience with a girl? Are you against all females having sex with males because of your negative experience?

  • I’ve changed slightly, but yes, I did and I was for a very, very long time. I have only modified it for the purposes of procreation, and still consider recreative only sex to be a form of rape- sometimes mutual rape, but without the possibility of procreation, sex is just lying.

  • Theletterderp

    Anything you want to offer about segregation as well while we’re at it? You can go for the home run. Is there a disease you want to make up for sharing water fountains with other races? You’ve got the chance to really let it all hang out and look completely despicable here. You’re already showing yourself to be a terrible member of society both in opinions and ideals as well as apparently the use of your entire life by your own admission in a goal designed around causing harm to those around you, who want absolutely nothing to do with you. Really, if it weren’t for you paying taxes, your life otherwise sounds like it’s been a complete and utter drain on the world around you. :/ I’m sure someones’ happy you’re around, but with your flat out harmful ideals that don’t coincide with for the most part, anyone’s, viewpoints, beyond well maybe rapists, we can only hope that for the sake of other people you’re just a big talker.
    If not, hopefully whatever woman that ends up raped by you will go to the proper authorities promptly.

    Anyway, get some help, check yourself into a clinic. Do something. I don’t think you have the ability to help yourself, and I don’t think you’ll listen to someone on the internet.

  • Yep, because it’s always easier to shoot somebody after you dehumanize them first, right?

  • No, I’m backing it up with your opinion on the matter: your repeated allegation that parents are not human enough to use marriage to support their families. Let’s see this one get removed again, as all my other posts backing up my point with YOUR OWN WORDS have been.

  • Theletterderp

    You have to act like a human first and not just a ball of hate with a drive purely to bring harm to others.

  • Let me know when you achieve that, since everything you’ve posted in this thread shows that you are just a ball of hate with a drive purely to bring harm to others.

  • Theletterderp

    Lulz. Okay delusional rapist. Enjoy your time in jail when you go to practice your morally righteous abuse against women.

  • I’m going to jail anyway just for being heterosexual, so what does it matter?

    You are the one bullying me, but of course, bullies always claim that the law is on their side, because it is.

  • Theletterderp

    Too bad being a rapist doesn’t make you hetero. Just makes you a rapist which you’ll get to find out in jail when being raped by other rapists. You’re sorely lacking for a definition of bullying, or do you think it’s another word you made up that you get to create one for? It’s clear you’re a troll on the internet, and if you actually got the things you wanted, you’d just find new things to hate. I mean, at this point in the conversation you’ve condemned yourself to hell even by the basic rules of the bible. It’s clear you have no grasp of even your own views on things, since everything you say is with the naivete and shortsightedness of a six year old throwing a tantrum because things aren’t going his way.

    Hopefully the only person hurt here will remain you, due to your failures in life at trying to circumvent others that want nothing to do with you, and you don’t decide to convince yourself it’s okay to start killing people because of your tantrum. You need to find a real job and benefit society. I’m sorry your life has been such a waste. Maybe at least the people you make happy by flipping their burgers will make up for some of the damages you’ve done to other people.

  • I only have sex for procreation- and thus am not a rapist. You on the other hand, have sex for recreation, and thus you are.

  • Theletterderp

    Except you don’t understand the very definition of basic words. Just because you intend on raping a girl pregnant does not make it consensual and in no way makes you not a rapist.

    Whereas consensual sex implies the lack of rape as long as they’re within the age of consent, as is the law in every country with even a modicum of womens rights.

    How much explaining to you does it take to get you to realise just because you say something doesn’t make it true?

  • You are the one trying to change the basic definition of words. I am the one who doesn’t have sex outside of marriage for the purposes of procreation *ONLY*. And I consider marriage to be invalid if one of the participants refuses to participate in procreation.

    Consent without the paperwork- without marriage- is worthless, and is rape.

    And I couldn’t give a flying fig for what you consider “women’s rights”- to me, that’s just misandry.

  • Theletterderp

    Which is why you get to go to jail when you’re finally caught. Anywho, this conversation is looping, you can’t defend yourself so you just repeat things you think are true that come from nowhere factual.

    Hopefully you’ll just be maced and go to jail before you rape whatever woman that wants nothing to do with you into pregnancy.

  • This conversation was looped from the beginning. I have my own society, you have yours, and trying to be multicultural/plural is just going to result in more pain. Neither side is capable of tolerance without giving up dearly held beliefs. That is why this country is going downhill, because it is impossible to keep up the farce any longer.

  • Theletterderp

    By you. Because you can’t defend yourself in any real way other than making more things up like you are right now and continue to do because you don’t know how to express a real and valid argument. You are not a society, and you need to leave if you have a problem with the people around you.
    The whole room doesn’t need to stop what they’re doing and pay attention to you because you’re throwing a tantrum.

  • No, by you- because the whole room doesn’t need to stop what they are doing and pay attention to you because YOU are throwing a tantrum (and using SCOTUS and law enforcement to do it).

  • Theletterderp

    Lulz. We stopped talking about gay marriage a while ago we’re talking about you having opinions and views on straightforward issues, like rape, that are simply wrong. That no one else shares except for literal criminals that want an excuse to rape, and you. You cannot keep seeing yourself as some majority vote here.

    The room is against you. You are alone. Please continue to feel alone, panic, make up lies, and pretend the world is against you while you actively try to impede on other peoples’ lives for no reason other than your own petty jealousy that they have people that support them and you have no one but parents that have to be deeply ashamed when they hear you speak.

  • I have been talking about nothing else, it is you who tried to deflect from the wide ranging negative effects of Obergefell

  • Theletterderp

    No, you haven’t. You’re a compulsive liar. There’s a string of posts above you that prove otherwise.
    Compulsive lying is a real disorder and you need to be administered into a psychiatric clinic before you bring physical harm on a woman, since your lying and self belief of your lies has sent you so far down a path of potentially being a harm to others, and not only yourself.

  • Just because you are not smart enough to take a holistic view of the common good over individual happiness is not my fault.

  • Theletterderp

    Person whom thinks education, dictionaries, and scientific evidence are government conspiracies thinks other people are inferior to his intelligence. Lol.

  • No, my response is “Because YOU said so”. I don’t know why you keep missing that.

  • Elizabeth.

    Hi mason! just happened on an intriguing blog by an atheist who’s black, and who has a post on how blacks can be Christian. I’m very surprised he doesn’t mention the Exodus — I had thought that was a big theme & affirmation (e.g. the spiritual “Let My People Go”) — but he talks about how the religious gathering was the one institution they themselves controlled; they imbued it with much African spirituality; and it has become a potent instrument of social change. …He mentions too the Stockholm Syndrome, as you did a ways back… and other thoughtful insights…. Interesting!
    http://www.patheos.com/blogs/notesfromanapostate/2015/07/better-understanding-black-christianity/

  • mason

    thanks Elizabeth

  • Elizabeth.

    There’s actually very, very little in the bible that’s assumed to proscribe glbt relations…. but there has been one humongous tradition that uses and mis-uses a few verses and one story. Against that, Luke-Acts is a story of relentlessly expanding welcome which includes sexual identity, as in the story of the Ethiopian Eunuch. http://covnetpres.org/2011/01/interview-with-rev-dr-arlo-duba/

    For this reason it seems to me that the difference between the two approaches would be how much detail to include… both deal with the texts in question and what they meant in context… but the more conservative groups would likely want more detail….

    In both cases, I am profoundly thankful this tradition is beginning to weaken, after creating so much suffering.

    [to bustergigi below… David : ) ]

  • gimpi1

    Well-said, Dessany.