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Author Topic: New Declaration, Same Old Anti-Gay Message  (Read 6954 times)

Sorcha

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Re: New Declaration, Same Old Anti-Gay Message
« Reply #15 on: August 31, 2017, 10:43:24 am »
The problem is that groups like these try to influence and impose their beliefs on civil law. The classic textbook example is Kim Davis and her refusal to issue marriage licenses to same sex couples. There was no question that marriage equality was the law of the land, per the SCOTUS, and still is. She cited her religious beliefs in refusing to issue marriage licenses to same sex couples, and in prohibiting other clerks under her from issuing those licenses. If she didn't want to issue the licenses herself, I can partly accept it, though I don't like it. She was unquestionably wrong in prohibiting her staff from issuing the licenses. She put her religious beliefs above her duty as a civil servant in a secular society, imposing them on US citizens and other state employees. This is where these groups go way more than too far.

Right. If they were quietly just believing this stuff and saying "you can't be in our group", that would be one thing. But they're trying to impose their rules on the rest of society. This was not a statement of position. It was aggressive posturing.

I mean, watch how politicians cater to evangelicals, and then see if it's still a mystery why this is a problem. It has the potential to cause real harm to real people. And not everyone can just "leave". Gay and transgender minors cannot just leave. They will continue to be subjected to the notion that their very identity is loathsome to God, and that's something I can't tolerate.


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Darkhawk

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Re: New Declaration, Same Old Anti-Gay Message
« Reply #16 on: August 31, 2017, 11:14:29 am »
Regardless of the presence or lack thereof of Asherah or the Shekhina, if you look at Jewish texts analyzing the Torah, and even the events of the narrative themselves, you'll notice that the Jewish people, aside from a few exalted and troubled heroes (who often suffer punishment for their flaws), do not attempt to emulate the behavior of their god. Instead, they act as a force to temper his judgment and stay his wrathful hand.

Also, as I understand it, the Law was given to the Jewish people to implement, and it is no longer a place for Ha-Shem's intervention.  There are midrash about this!  The Law may have been given by Ha-Shem, but it is no longer about Ha-Shem.

Jewish approach to the Tanakh strikes me as vastly, vastly more sensible than a lot of Christian approaches, because it is full of analysis and argument.  For example, a rabbi has responded to the Nashville declaration ( the board did something weird and I don't know how to fix it, sorry) pointing out just a tiny few of the Jewish points of discussion about the so-called clobber texts, none of which most Christians ever even seem to consider.

Most appear flatly unaware that thought about these topics is possible.

(Edited to fix weird twitter link phenomenon.)
« Last Edit: August 31, 2017, 11:16:04 am by Darkhawk »
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Darkhawk

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Re: New Declaration, Same Old Anti-Gay Message
« Reply #17 on: August 31, 2017, 11:41:03 am »
You won't find a single indisputable precedent of Jesus dealing with someone who was "out and proud."

You will, however, find a case of Jesus healing the "beloved servant" of a Roman centurion, and praising the faith of the man who asked him to.

So, quick quiz:  how many Roman centurions had slave boys they were banging?  What would people of the time have assumed about someone who had a servant who was so dear to him that he'd go to a foreign insurgent preacher who was in active opposition to his occupying presence to ask for help?

Regardless of whether or not that actually was a pederastic relationship, it would have been exceptionally common and accepted that a man of power might have a servant or slave who was his sexual partner.  Jesus either suspected that that was quite likely the case, or Jesus was an utter idiot who was unaware of the social environment involving the Roman occupation, which he was actively and effectively involved with resisting.

I see no reason to believe that Jesus was an idiot.

He was entirely aware of what a likely relationship was there, and so was anyone who would hear the story about what he did.

One can of course make the case that this Roman centurion was merely kind to his servants and concerned for their well-being, and further make the case that Jesus magically know that this strange oppressor's servant was not a sex partner.  However, as he did not see fit to comment upon that, merely praising the man's faith, anyone who heard the story would likely assume that he had healed the young lover of an occupying soldier.  Even if that wasn't true.

So, if Jesus did not in fact heal the sex partner of a Roman centurion, he chose to respond to the man in such a way that people who had heard about what he did would go, "Wait, did he just heal the sex partner of a Roman centurion?"  He did nothing to head off that part of the story.  If he had wanted to stop the obvious assumptions, he could have.  Rather than praising the man's faith, he could have said something that began, "Because he does not take his servant to his bed..."

Because he was not an idiot, and he knew what people of his time and place knew.

So, sure, that's not "indisputable", but I feel that disputing it rather involves making a claim that Jesus was an idiot.  I find that a very strange position for Christians to hold.
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we shine like stars    - Covenant, "Bullet"

MeadowRae

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Re: New Declaration, Same Old Anti-Gay Message
« Reply #18 on: August 31, 2017, 12:43:10 pm »
I am not looking to start a fight. But I am seeking to state a dissent. Marriage is what it is because it is a manifestation of the nature and character of the Living God. It cannot be redefined. Homosexual "marriage" is not just wrong, it is not even possible. While this saying probably didn't originate with Abraham Lincoln, it is widely credited to him: "If you call a tail a leg, how many legs does a dog have? Four. Calling a tail a leg doesn't make it a leg."

What we have in homosexual "marriage" is a perverted sham which apes marriage. It is a fraud and, like all aberrant sexuality, is ultimately based upon a lie. And I believe that those who promote it or endorse it will ultimately be held liable for damages to every couple which did honor and uphold their legitimate marriage vows. If you want to appeal that judgment, whether you are a county clerk or sit on the Supreme Court (what a laughably presumptuous name), you will do so before Almighty God. Stand by.

While not related to the original article; I find the concept of marriage disgusting. Perhaps this is because I had too many stepfathers, perhaps it's because marriage used to be a sort of exchange of property, perhaps it's because I am still dealing with the ramifications of an abusive marriage. I don't know. But you can keep your legitimate marriage. I don't want it. I just want my rights.

If it becomes necessary in the future to protect the custody of my child or for health insurance reasons I will marry my SO, but begrudgingly. I rather like knowing he chooses to be with me rather than his being forced to and/or stuck. And considering we've both been married and divorced already (which, apparently, is permissible due to the hardness of hearts), I don't see the point. If he dies, he's leaving me the house. If I die, I'm making sure that he has at least a shot of custody with my son. If either of us loses our jobs, we will get married so that we can get health insurance. This is why many people want to get married. There are legal benefits. If you don't want secular society to co opt your religion's terms and traditions, make sure that church and state are separate.

In regards to the Nashville Agreement; let them quake in fear for their dying culture; I will fear not as Christ advised.

*edited for clarity
« Last Edit: August 31, 2017, 12:47:27 pm by MeadowRae »
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Sorcha

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Re: New Declaration, Same Old Anti-Gay Message
« Reply #19 on: August 31, 2017, 01:55:55 pm »
Also, as I understand it, the Law was given to the Jewish people to implement, and it is no longer a place for Ha-Shem's intervention.  There are midrash about this!  The Law may have been given by Ha-Shem, but it is no longer about Ha-Shem.

Jewish approach to the Tanakh strikes me as vastly, vastly more sensible than a lot of Christian approaches, because it is full of analysis and argument.  For example, a rabbi has responded to the Nashville declaration ( the board did something weird and I don't know how to fix it, sorry) pointing out just a tiny few of the Jewish points of discussion about the so-called clobber texts, none of which most Christians ever even seem to consider.

Most appear flatly unaware that thought about these topics is possible.

(Edited to fix weird twitter link phenomenon.)

I can vouch that most Evangelical Christians give very little thought to what modern Jewish scholarship or thought is about the scripture. When I started to take a cursory look into Jewish theology I was *shocked* at how different it was. I always assumed that up until Jesus we pretty much agreed on stuff, but nope. We don't. I mean, there's agreement points, but it's not nearly as harmonious as I thought.


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Darkhawk

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Re: New Declaration, Same Old Anti-Gay Message
« Reply #20 on: August 31, 2017, 02:37:17 pm »
I always assumed that up until Jesus we pretty much agreed on stuff, but nope. We don't. I mean, there's agreement points, but it's not nearly as harmonious as I thought.

Jesus was a Jewish rabbi focused on jubilee theology and engaged in revolutionary protest against imperial Rome!  When you get theological approaches rooted in the jubilee and anti-imperialism there's a lot in Judaism and Christianity in common!  It's just that each of them has whole bunches of other stuff going on.

It's worth keeping in mind that huge portions of Jesus's famous speeches are basically quotations from various Jewish scriptures.  He was intimately familiar with those texts and making constant reference to them in a way that modern Christians simply are not, and that makes it harder for modern Christians to understand him as he was understood by his audience.

(I mean, raise your hand if you know what "jubilee theology" would be.)
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we rise and fall
as our ashes turn to dust
we shine like stars    - Covenant, "Bullet"

Goddess_Ashtara

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Re: New Declaration, Same Old Anti-Gay Message
« Reply #21 on: August 31, 2017, 02:39:33 pm »
 

1. The adherents to these sects have proven time and again that they are not content merely to live their own lives according to these precepts. They will stop at nothing to use the force of law and tools of government to deprive others of the religious liberty they enjoy, by imposing their Christian Sharia law on others who do not share their beliefs.
Then do something about it, individually or collectively, if you have what it takes.

The best way to conquer a people is to change the way they believe.  There are leaders within many religions who understand this and will exploit or utilize this to their advantage.  I completely approve.


Quote
2. Technically yes, anyone who doesn't agree with these precepts can seek worthier religious pastures. However, this attitude cavalierly ignores those who grew up in this religion and have been inculcated with this claptrap from birth. For them, "leaving" is not the easy exit accomplished "as they Will." I have seen the damage done to a wonderful man firsthand. In too many the damage is lasting.
Developing a deep understanding of that religious culture (or any religious culture) will offer these individuals valuable insights into individual and collective human Nature.  What these individuals choose to do with those insights is all on them. 

Quote
3. To approve of religious precepts, regardless of their content, simply because their adherents follow them passionately, is quite frankly morally bankrupt. One might as well approve of the beheadings of ISIS; they have nothing but religious fervor, with bloody result.

I am certainly, as you say, "morally bankrupt".  As far as I am aware, my mind is not confined to any code of ethics or morals.  As such, I feel I can appreciate far more areas of individual and collective human Nature than most people.

I approve of many things.  War, peace, vengeance, forgiveness.  Sometimes the things I approve of appear to exist on opposite ends of a spectrum, which in some peoples' eyes is hypoctrical.  Except it's not.  I approve of people using whatever means necessary to indoctrinate or oppress others, just as I approve of people rising up against those who seek to dominate their hearts and minds.  I choose to see and understand many things from many points of view. 
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Jainarayan

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Re: New Declaration, Same Old Anti-Gay Message
« Reply #22 on: August 31, 2017, 03:05:01 pm »
I am not looking to start a fight. But I am seeking to state a dissent. Marriage is what it is because it is a manifestation of the nature and character of the Living God. It cannot be redefined. Homosexual "marriage" is not just wrong, it is not even possible. While this saying probably didn't originate with Abraham Lincoln, it is widely credited to him: "If you call a tail a leg, how many legs does a dog have? Four. Calling a tail a leg doesn't make it a leg."

What we have in homosexual "marriage" is a perverted sham which apes marriage. It is a fraud and, like all aberrant sexuality, is ultimately based upon a lie. And I believe that those who promote it or endorse it will ultimately be held liable for damages to every couple which did honor and uphold their legitimate marriage vows. If you want to appeal that judgment, whether you are a county clerk or sit on the Supreme Court (what a laughably presumptuous name), you will do so before Almighty God. Stand by.

That is not a dissent, that is a backhanded diatribe against same sex marriage. All of that is based on your belief in a God and text that not all of us hold. You are entitled to your beliefs, but please do not impose what you believe is right and wrong on those of us who do not hold the same beliefs. Please do not state them as fact or couch those comments in "but I don't want to argue" or "this is my opinion". No it's not, they're statements of fact as you see them, and they are offensive. That is akin to "no offense, but that shirt is ugly". The offense is seen even before the sentence is finished.

ehbowen

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Re: New Declaration, Same Old Anti-Gay Message
« Reply #23 on: August 31, 2017, 03:11:17 pm »
You are entitled to your beliefs, but please do not impose what you believe is right and wrong on those of us who do not hold the same beliefs.

Why is it that your side is encouraged to alter laws and policies of very long-established standing but my side is not permitted to reverse very recent policies of highly questionable legitimacy?
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Darkhawk

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Re: New Declaration, Same Old Anti-Gay Message
« Reply #24 on: August 31, 2017, 03:24:21 pm »
Why is it that your side is encouraged to alter laws and policies of very long-established standing but my side is not permitted to reverse very recent policies of highly questionable legitimacy?

Equal treatment before the law is required in this country.

Making legal treatment adhere to a specific interpretation of a particular religious text is forbidden in this country.

This is not rocket surgery.

(fixed ambiguous phrasing)
as the water grinds the stone
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Jainarayan

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Re: New Declaration, Same Old Anti-Gay Message
« Reply #25 on: August 31, 2017, 03:25:41 pm »
Why is it that your side is encouraged to alter laws and policies of very long-established standing but my side is not permitted to reverse very recent policies of highly questionable legitimacy?

I wasn't aware that equalizing society and granting equal rights is anything but that. Society changes. It's called progress. Slavery was also a long-standing institution, as was child labor, the prohibition of women to obtain credit in their names, among other societal establishments. But they are long gone.

The NJ state supreme court, when it established civil unions, stated that sufficient time had passed and there is sufficient evidence showing that same sex marriages and families are no threat to society. The court said it was time to question why same sex marriages should not be allowed. There was no legal reason to not legalize same sex marriages; the US is built on civil law, not Yahweh's laws. The Supreme Court of the United States concurred. So, it comes down to civil law in a secular nation.

Jainarayan

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Re: New Declaration, Same Old Anti-Gay Message
« Reply #26 on: August 31, 2017, 03:26:52 pm »
Equal treatment before the law is required in this country.

Making legal treatment adhere to a specific interpretation of a particular religious text is forbidden in this country.

This is not rocket surgery.

(fixed ambiguous phrasing)

I wish I was a concise and succinct as you.  ;D

Darkhawk

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Re: New Declaration, Same Old Anti-Gay Message
« Reply #27 on: August 31, 2017, 03:38:09 pm »
Slavery was also a long-standing institution, as was child labor, the prohibition of women to obtain credit in their names, among other societal establishments. But they are long gone.

And at the very least slavery was vigorously defended as required by a proper and orthodox reading of the Bible.  After all, doesn't it say "slaves, obey your masters"?  And there's a whole lot of Old Testament stuff about proper treatment of slaves, waaaaay more than can be interpreted as saying anything about queer folks.  It's right there in the Bible!  The Bible doesn't lie, right?  Abolishing slavery is anti-Biblical!

The historical development of white evangelicalism is hugely dependent on slaveowning culture and its justifications, and the same lines of logic that were developed explicitly to mandate and support racialised chattel slavery (literalism, etc.) are still weaponised and used to attack others.  But if you go back a hundred and fifty or so years, you can see the same argument structure only aimed at the preservation of slavery.

(Fred Clark writes about this a lot.  When white Baptists get really angry about the origins of white Baptist theology and start trying to turn it into something humane.)
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ehbowen

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Re: New Declaration, Same Old Anti-Gay Message
« Reply #28 on: August 31, 2017, 03:38:46 pm »
Equal treatment before the law is required in this country.

Doesn't seem to be. Otherwise every hospital administrator and pharmaceutical executive in this country would be doing fifty years to life for antitrust violations.

Making legal treatment adhere to a specific interpretation of a particular religious text is forbidden in this country.

No, it's not. The First Amendment is there to keep government out of the churches, not churches out of the government.
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Computers are like air conditioning. They become useless when you open Windows—Linus Torvalds.

Jainarayan

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Re: New Declaration, Same Old Anti-Gay Message
« Reply #29 on: August 31, 2017, 03:50:55 pm »

No, it's not. The First Amendment is there to keep government out of the churches, not churches out of the government.

You'd do well to review the writings about it, the SCOTUS decisions and the Constitution itself. Article VI, Section 3 kicks religion right out of government.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Separation_of_church_and_state_in_the_United_States
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/No_Religious_Test_Clause

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