I love and care for my LGBT family members and LGBT friends and am very upset about the way modern American Evangelical Christianity is homophobic in the name of Jesus… It has almost made me not want to go to church… and certainly made me very angry at the homophobic Bible bangers and all the damage they do. They preach that all Scripture is God-breathed, then go straight into forcing their personal prejudices into mistranslations and misinterpretations.
Their logic is “we have to go by the Bible” then they make the Bible go by their hates and fears and politics. No wonder thinking people are joining me in rejecting that logic.
Here are some facts that I am sure I can defend:
- The Hebrew Old Testament clearly indicates that King David had a sexual relationship with Jonathan, son of King Saul.
- The Hebrew Old Testament clearly tells us about a sexual relationship between the prophet Daniel and Ashpenaz and indicates that God put Daniel into that relationship for God’s purposes.
- For fourteen centuries, the Christian church performed wedding ceremonies for same-sex couples.
- The social tides in Europe turned against homosexuality around the thirteenth century (for political reasons). Until that time there was no organized opposition to homosexuality either from society or from the church.
- The change in society’s attitude toward homosexuals was the only reason the church stopped marrying them and began to persecute them (does anyone believe that the corrupt Catholic Church of the Inquisition should be our model for the modern Church?).
- Same-sex marriage continued in eastern Europe, beyond the reach of the Romans.
- King James (aka Queen James) was openly bisexual, a fact of which the translators were well aware, so they carefully layered homophobia into their English translation as they did other social concerns of their time (such as the Divine Right of Kings). The KJV is originally one of the worst English translations available. I believe modern homophobes prefer it because it can be used to justify their prejudices, but in truth, the (mis)translators were trying to get James to forget his boyfriends and make Royal Babies (which worked).
- There is absolutely no condemnation of homosexuality in the Hebrew “Old Testament.” There is absolutely no condemnation of homosexuality in the Greek “New Testament.” The Bible never hints at the idea that homosexuality is a choice or a sin.
- While English versions have been deliberately mistranslated to make it appear that God condemns homosexuality, even then a careful reading shows that not to be the case. The overarching ideas of acceptance and not judging others are much more important themes in the Bible and the homophobic passages cease to be that when read in context and without reading-into.
- Neither Hebrew nor Greek scriptures connect Sodom and Gomorrah with homosexuality. The idea that those cities were destroyed for homosexuality is a man-made notion and is unsupported by any scriptures. Paul’s warnings are for Christians not to participate in pagan rituals, some of which are led by homosexual priests who expected heterosexuals to participate. Jesus was silent on the issue of homosexuality, but certainly not silent on issues of exclusion and hate.