It seems like shutting the door after the horse has bolted.
Is this because of her homophobic comments during the competition or is it because of her topless photos? If the former, surely that decision should have been arrived at long before they stuck the tiara on her head and announced her the winner?
If the latter… well, it’s a bit rich judging airhead bimbos on their sex appeal and then saying you don’t approve of them appearing topless.
This whole event is a meaningless sexist fiasco and should have been consigned to the dustbin of history back in the 70′s.
At least porn awards have the integrity to carry their underlying message on their sleeves, rather than dressing up any banal utterance the bikini clad models make as a mandate for the United Nations.
If it’s really about talent or political accumen, you can judge both those character traits with fully clad women. Otherwise it raises the spectre of politicians showing up for work in swimwear, and that wouldn’t be good.
i almost feel sorry for that bitch… …almost…
I don’t think it’s her fault if she was brainwashed since she was a young girl into believing that us homosexuals are pervs. That is religious indoctrination, and perhaps she is just a victim. Instead of fighting against victims of religion nonsence, let’s fight the real bitches, like the popess benedicta the sixteenth tramp, or imams and rabbins (all coocos…) f_uck the ones who brainwash children and transform them into intolerant christian evangelical republican homophobic racist assholes.
ps.: we all have the courage to hate her… but do you have the courage to blame the pope for his idiotic nonsense?
yes c.j., we sure do!
c.j. – Of course we do!
Flapjack – I believe it is because of the topless photos. I remember a case of the first black Miss USA who was also stripped of her title because of topless photos. I think the article did lead you to believe it is as a result of the comments she made about gay marriage though.
If she had any decency she would resign immediately, but she has proven that she does not. I do hope she will be stripped of her title. We need to uphold standards and if she publicly stated that she was against mixed-race marriage then she would have to go, so this should be no different.
If she is stripped of her title and it is made to look like it was because of her remarks on gay marriage it will make her into a martyr for the Christian Right. You will see the argument being made “Look at Carrie Prejean, she spoke out and was punished. She what happens when you challenge the gays?”. I really hope that doesn’t happen.
I think John is right! Why make martyr out of her for the’ Irreligious Wrong?” I obviously don’t agree with what she said but since it was not hate speech and there is freedom of speech in the states she is entitled to voice her opinion no matter how wrong it may seem to our community. Even though that opinion was formed by natal religious brain washing. As for the topless photos, that was a pageant leadership “screw up!” They should have previously vetted her and barred her from competition if it was such “a big deal.” Frankly, I don’t think she should be “bounced” for such a minor juvenile indiscretion.
Still in all, how churlish how just plain mean of any one wanting to strip her of a title she’s probably worked for a long time. I do not like Miss Califonia’s answer she gave to Perez the blogger. But shame on any one who wants to null and void her title.
I agree with John. This is just the kind of thing that the ‘christians’ love – any chance to go on about how persecuted they are blah blah. I’d rather she be made to try to understand how offensive her views were and why.
Personally, I think it’s more likely to be because of the topless photos (and how disappointing THEY were! :D )
The article says, ” The decision follows the allegedly homophobic comments made by Miss Prejean about gay marriage.”
Such a stupid comment. She did not make a “homophopic comment” she
made a statement for “male, female marriage,” and that’s a truthful belief of hers. You people are so paranoid that anyone
who has any kind of Christian belief is “homophopic.” Talk about
intolerence, you are the epitome of people who are opinionated
I knew Trump wouldn’t disqualify her and am happy he had the
strength to hold to his convictions and not “cave in” to all
the homosexual pressure he came under. While I think Trump is
sort of a jerk in some ways, I give him credit for being a
“man’s man and a woman’s man” in this case. Go The Donald!!!
Not really Hank – just one type of Christian belief makes you homophobic… you know which one I mean – the one that keeps people quoting Leviticus like you’re supposed to take every verse literally apart from the ones that don’t apply to gay people like the clothes of mixed fibres, injunctions on shellfish and selling your daughter into slavery.
Picking and choosing your bible verses to taylor to your pre-existing anti-gay prejudices, that’s what makes you a homophobe. Anything else just isn’t supposed to be taken literally, right?
It was a very politically charged question for beauty pagent.
She ought to have dodged the question like a politican and answer nothing – on the lines of “that is a very good question, but in my opinion, it is up to each individuel state to decide whether or not, to allow gay marriage.”
but I doubt that would have kept Perez´ month shut on the issue.
To me, she didn´t cause offence. There are people out there, who say and do alot worse then she did. Afterall, it was a beauty pagent, ought it be taken so seriously?
Yo Flapjack — you people keep giving me the same unenlightened
response. Why don’t you study the OT and NT before you ask
such ridiculous arguments?
Here is a detailed answer to your question/comment and if
you don’t believe me, then study the Scriptures and read qualified modern-day preachers, you’ll find your own answers — so you and others don’t keep asking the same question!
About the various laws in the Old and New Testaments, the gentiles weren’t asked to hold every law that was given in the Old Testament. For example on the Apostle’s Convent (Acts 15:6-31) (52 AD) a question was settled whether the gentiles needed to be circumcised and keep the law of Moses (Acts 15:5). The question therefore arises which parts of the Old Testament are eternal and which parts of it were for a specific people, a specific time and/or place.
Various categories of laws holds the answers to your questions when we divide the laws into their appropriate categories:
1. Those given to ALL people: the moral law,
2. Those given to the COUNTRY of Israel: the civil law, and
3. Those given to the Old Testament CHURCH as typifying Christ: the ceremonial law.
4. Those given to the church of ALL TIMES.
What does Bible Say About the Old Testament Law?
The Law of Moses regulated almost every aspect of life in Old Testament times. But with the coming of Christ, God established a new covenant of faith and love with mankind. Christians are not required to follow the Old Testament rules about crimes and punishments, warfare, slavery, diet, circumcision, sacrifice, feast days, Sabbath observance, ritual cleanness, etc. However, the moral and ethical teachings of Jesus and His apostles call for even greater self-discipline than those of the Old Testament.
The Law of Moses
In Biblical times, the Law of Moses (also called Old Testament Law, Mosaic Law, or just The Law) regulated almost every aspect of Jewish life. The Ten Commandments and many other laws defined matters of morals, religious practice and government. It regulated the army, criminal justice, commerce, property rights, slavery, sexual relations, marriage and social interactions. It required circumcision for males, blood sacrifices, and Sabbath observance. It provided for the welfare of widows, orphans, the poor, foreigners and domestic animals. Ceremonial rules divided animals into “clean” and “unclean” categories. Clean animals could be eaten; unclean animals could not.
Teachings of Jesus
By the time of Jesus, the great moral principles God had given to Moses in the Ten Commandments had been turned into hundreds of ceremonial rules. People thought they were living holy lives if they just obeyed all those rules. But many people found enough “loopholes” to obey all the rules and still live wicked and greedy lives (Matthew 23:23-28).
Jesus said that was not at all what God had intended. Jesus did not abolish the moral and ethical laws that had been in effect from the time of Moses (Matthew 5:17-18, Luke 16:16-17). He affirmed and expanded upon those principles, but He said obedience must be from the heart (attitudes and intentions) rather than just technical observance of the letter of the law (Matthew 5:21-22, 27-28, 31-32, 33-34, 38-42, 43-44, etc.).
Jesus and His disciples did not observe the strict Jewish rules against doing any work on the Sabbath (Matthew 12:1-14, Mark 2:23-28, 3:1-6, Luke 6:1-11, 13:10-17, 14:1-6, John 5:1-18).
In contrast to the “clean” and “unclean rules,” Jesus said no food can defile a person. It is bad attitudes and actions that can make a person unholy (Matthew 15:1-20, Mark 7:1-23).
Council of Jerusalem
The first Christians came from among the Jews, and they continued to observe the Law of Moses as well as their new Christian faith. But as more and more Gentiles (non-Jews) converted to Christianity, there were disputes about whether or not these Gentile Christians must observe the Law. Issues of circumcision and diet were especially troublesome.
In about the year 49 A.D., Peter, Paul, Barnabas, James and other Christian leaders met in Jerusalem to settle the issue (Acts 15:1-29). It was agreed that no conditions should be imposed on the Gentile converts except faith in Christ. However, the council recommended that Gentile Christians abstain from certain things that were particularly offensive to their Jewish brethren – food sacrificed to idols, blood, meat of strangled animals and sexual immorality (Acts 15:29).
The New Covenant
With the coming of Christ, God has established a new covenant with mankind (, Luke 22:20, ,that supersedes the Old Testament Law.Jesus and His apostles gave us a radically new understanding of the true intent of the Old Testament Law; they brought a new era of the rule of love for all people and spiritual truth instead of rule by law (Luke 10:25-28, John 13:34-35, Ephesians 2:14-18).
The teachings of Jesus, the Council of Jerusalem, and other New Testament teachings (John 1:16-17, Acts 13:39, Romans 2:25-29, 8:1-4, 1 Corinthians 9:19-21, Galatians 2:15-16, Ephesians 2:15) make it clear that Christians are not required to follow the Old Testament rules about crimes and punishments, warfare, slavery, diet, circumcision, sacrifice, feast days, Sabbath observance, ritual cleanness, etc.
Christians still look to the Old Testament scripture for moral and spiritual guidance (2 Timothy 3:16-17). But when there seems to be a conflict between Old Testament laws and New Testament principles, we must follow the New Testament because it represents the most recent and most perfect revelation from God (Hebrews 8:13, 2 Corinthians 3:1-18, Galatians 2:15-20).
However, freedom from the Old Testament Law is not a license for Christians to relax their moral standards. The moral and ethical teachings of Jesus and His apostles call for even greater self-discipline than those of the Old Testament
Hank – Yeah right. Pull the other one… it’s got bells on. Admit it… you simply like the bigotry aspect and will find any theological response that suits it.
I too studied the bible and eventually tossed it out wholesale because of the ability of any passing “Biblical scholar” to revise it at will.
Hnak, I actually read all your post and even looked up the bits of the Bible you quoted to make sure I hadn’t misunderstood what you were saying. BUT I see NOTHING in what you’ve said above that answers Flapjack’s point (why go on and on about homosexuality and ignore the other parts of Leviticus). In fact, you seem to be saying that the OT laws were superceded by the NT laws and the arrival on Earth of Jesus. So, if that’s the case, why STILL go on about homosexuality? Your answer appears to be the section “However, the council recommended that Gentile Christians abstain from certain things that were particularly offensive to their Jewish brethren – food sacrificed to idols, blood, meat of strangled animals and sexual immorality (Acts 15:29)” but ‘sexual immorality’ can mean anything. If Jesus was so keen to stress that homosexuality was wrong, then why didn’t he? He had every opportunity to emphasise that, but he didn’t. Not once.
You said “However, freedom from the Old Testament Law is not a license for Christians to relax their moral standards. The moral and ethical teachings of Jesus and His apostles call for even greater self-discipline than those of the Old Testament”. That’s not from the Bible – that’s your opinion, which you’re entitled to. But don’t pretend that your fear and dislike of LGBT people is somehow sanctioned by the Bible.
IF there’s a God, I bet you anything that he/she doesn’t care one jot about who people love – but I do think he/she’d be concerned by the hatred stirred up in his/her name.
Hey Iris. Thanks for your comment. I’d like to take each item separately
You said, “But don’t pretend that your fear and dislike of LGBT people is somehow sanctioned by the Bible”
I Ask: Please tell me when or where I or God ever said…(either of us) disliked LGBT people. In my reading of the Bible, it shows that Satan is the master manipulator of human nature. Our weakness combined with the devil’s influence has led the whole world into sin (Rev. 12:9). Paul explains that “the god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel” 2Cor 4:4
When I point out the sinful behavior as being wrong, it doesn’t mean I hate the sinner but instead we Christians must work to reach the one who struggles while opposing Scriptural authority…in this case, homosexuality, which is an extremely powerful human drive. But there’s always hope of deliverance from those things that bar people from inheriting the kingdom of God. “And that is what some of you were (fornicators, idolaters, adulterers, nor effeminate, homosexual offenders, sodomites, nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, shall inherit the kingdom of God)…But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of God” 1Cor. 6:11
You said, “ If Jesus was so keen to stress that homosexuality was wrong, then why didn’t he? He had every opportunity to emphasize that, but he didn’t. Not once.”
I Say: In the short 3 years of Jesus’ life, His main work had to do with showing the way of salvation, of delivering God’s Word and showing the righteous behavior necessary to enter into the kingdom of God, not to name every sin that mankind was guilty of. That’s why he had disciples and then apostles to expand on His teaching and principles and who did for 10,20 and more years as they traveled into many countries preaching His Word.
In fact Jesus talked very little about specific sins because God’s laws were written in the OT and Jesus went beyond those commandments, as an example, He says, Matt 5:21-22, “You have heard that the ancients were told, ‘You Shall Not Commit Murder’, and ‘Whoever commits murder shall be liable to the court’…”But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother shall be guilty before the court”…so murder goes far beyond the act and into the angry thoughts of a person.
The NT’s administration of God’s law considers first the attitude of the one who has sinned. One who is willing to “sin no more” is eligible for mercy instead of condemnation. But to those who choose to continue sinning Jesus says, “Unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.” Luke 13:3
You said, “IF there’s a God, I bet you anything that he/she doesn’t care one jot about who people love – but I do think he/she’d be concerned by the hatred stirred up in his/her name.
I agree, “But I tell you that every careless word that people speak, they shall give an accounting for it in the day of judgment. For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.” (Matthew 12:36-37). So I try to point out the what the Bible has to say about our behavior, it will offend some, but if I speak in truth as Jesus and his disciples did, I don’t feel I’ve lied. While I don’t know all that I want about the Bible, I do study it daily and feel that I’m growing as a Christian, and my duty is to help sinners from
Hey Flapjack: your comment “Admit it… you simply like the bigotry aspect and will find any theological response that suits it.”
I know you like the combination of Christian and bigot. My
question is: Are there any bigoted homosexuals? If so, give me an example of a bigoted homosexual…I can’t think of any.
Hank, thank you for your answer, which was clear and polite. However, perhaps you could:
1) give me the proof that homosexuality is a sin as dictaed by God (it’s not in the 10 Commandments)
2) explain why people can ignore some parts of Leviticus, but not others – specifically the homosexual bit, which, as I said, some Christians are obsessed with while thinking it fine to ignore other parts of Leviticus. How do you know what God thinks it’s OK to disregard?
3) explain why you think that Leviticus constitutes the ‘word of God’ rather than the opinion of the writer
4) explain why Lot was saved from the destruction of Sodom because he was a ‘good person’ but then went on to commit incest and wasn’t punished for it by God (and, no, I don’t count his wife being turned into a pillar of salt)
5) tell me how you can be sure that Satan isn’t working through YOU and other Christians who go on and on about homosexuality to the detriment of the church (by that I mean they make Christianity seem extreme/loony/hate-filled etc. and contribute to the decline of Christianity in mnay countries, including the UK) If I was the Devil, I’d destroy God’s church from within by fomenting division and a lack of focus such as that caused by the obsession with homosexuality.
Once again, I’m an agnostic, but even if I believed in God, I don’t think he’d count homosexuality as a sin. Not at all. Therefore can you understand how annoying it is to be castigated by people who are, in my opinion, totally wrong. I was born gay. It’s not a choice, it’s not a lifestyle, it’s not a behaviour – it’s part of me. I don’t doubt that for one second. It’s a natural variation that’s present among human beings and animals. The world is varied and that’s a great thing. We all have something to give and we’re all equally worthy of respect.
I don’t want you to love me but not my sin, or whatever you say, I want you to try to understand that being gay isn’t a choice and isn’t a sin. There’s nothing for you to educate LGBT people about, nothing for you to forgive, nothing for you to condemn. Go out and help people who really do need help. Do it in God’s name if you choose because you’re entitled to your beliefs, but those beliefs are yours and should be kept personal to you not imposed, however kindly-intentioned, on other people – especially not when parts of them are based on a fallacy. Homosexuality is not a sin any more than heterosexuality.
Hey Iris…glad to hear from you again. I can’t answer all your
questions on this comment, it’s getting too long. But will do soon.
Hey Iris, you say “Once again, I’m an agnostic, but even if I believed in God, I don’t think he’d count homosexuality as a sin.”
I’d really like to know how you became an agnostic? Did you ever study the Bible seriously to see what it has to say about life and death? Or I’d guess you probably looked through the Bible in “bits and pieces” and haven’t truly read it in depth, and probably heard or read some parts of it that you didn’t like or disagreed with and then you said, “I don’t need it, don’t believe it and will ignore it entirely…or something like that.”
You can’t do that because the Bible offers a world view to understand God and mankind, and to simply take some verses out of context doesn’t give you the truth, and in fact makes you more confused. My advice is if a person isn’t going to study the Bible seriously and totally, don’t even open the Bible because you’re doing yourself a huge disservice.
You said, “ give me the proof that homosexuality is a sin as dictated by God (it’s not in the 10 Commandments)
The Ten Commandments stands as the basic foundation of God’s Word to mankind. It doesn’t attempt to list/ cover all the sins that man can commit. For example, nothing about: incest, child abuse, pornography, rape, bestiality, pedophilia, wife-beating, and many more sins that are covered by the disciples throughout the Bible. These topics probably were asked by the disciples to Jesus and they recorded his answers when they later put the Scripture into words.
When God created the world, He established two institutions that continued after Mankind sinned. One was the Sabbath, a memorial of creation. The other was the marriage relationship between a husband and wife. Humans were created in the image of God, and they were given a power, that of procreation, that the angels did not have. The union of husband and wife, through sexual intercourse, made them one.
“A man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh. ” (Gen. 2:23, 24)
Satan, in his hatred for God, has done his best to distort and destroy both of the institutions that God had instituted. To destroy the holy marriage relationship, Satan encouraged people to engage in any form of sexual immorality that would pervert what God had created to be beautiful. This included adultery (sex between a man and woman that are not married, incest (sex between close family members, either by blood or marriage), homosexual encounters (sex between members of the same sex), sex with animals, easy divorce, rape and others, all damaging to the institutions of marriage and the family. To encourage this debasement, demonic agencies in their attempt to be worshiped through various pagan religions, encouraged sexually immoral acts (including heterosexual and homosexual prostitution) as part of idol worship.
You said, “ explain why you think that Leviticus constitutes the ‘word of God’ rather than the opinion of the writer”
Because it fits in with the other writings of the Bible covering sexual sins – there’s no contradiction with Gen. 1:27, 2:24, 19:4-9….Mt. 19:4-6…Mk. 10:6-9…1Cor: 6:16…Eph. 5:31…Rom:1:24-32…1Tim:8-11…so I can accept that it’s the “word of God,” and not a man’s opinion.
You say, “tell me how you can be sure that Satan isn’t working through YOU and other Christians who go on and on about homosexuality to the detriment of the church (by that I mean they make Christianity seem extreme/loony/hate-filled etc. and contribute to the decline of Christianity in many countries, including the UK) If I was the Devil, I’d destroy God’s church from within by fomenting division and a lack of focus such as that caused by the obsession with homosexuality.”
Iris, you make a great argument there. And partly for those reasons, I profess to be a “follower of Jesus Christ,” and don’t simply state that I’m a Christian without explaining it further. There are millions of “Christians” who in my opinion are not true “followers of Jesus Christ” and they create a terrible of what Jesus Christ say about these “Christians.”
I study and follow the works of Jesus, who Satan hates and has
deceived those in the pagan, non-Christian world, but has devised
a counterfeit Christianity and has foisted it off on millions who
sincerely think they are following the Christ of the Bible. But
I’m aware of that deception and I try to adhere to the Holy Bible
totally, so I can’t be a worker for Satan.
We are in a heated battle already: the United Church of Christ began ordaining practicing homosexuals into the clergy…the Evangelical Lutheran Church has several ordained pastors who are practicing homosexuals…the Episcopal Church is debating the ordination of practicing homosexual…The Presbyterian Church …United Methodists…the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)…the Mennonite Church…and other religious organizations are helping Satan destroy the true church of God by fomenting arguments about homosexuality….so you’re perceptive as to what’s happening in “so-called Christian” churches.
I’ll comment on your other questions soon Iris.
Thank you, Hank. Let me answer your questions too:
You misjudge me. Yes, I DID read the Bible (yes, ALL of it). I read it when I was a child (I got one with pictures in and, to me, it was just a big book of stories like any other). Also, when I was at school, we read through the whole Bible in detail in our RE classes over the years, discussing it as we went. It was my RE teacher who said that Leviticus shouldn’t be taken literally nowadays because it was a reflection of its time and was dealing with things of that time, including trying to sway people away from other cults/religions by suggesting that they were somehow dirty.
So, although I freely admit that I don’t remember all that much of the Bible, I HAVE read it all more than once.
I became an agnostic as I grew older because I realised that people were taking the Bible literally whereas I’d thought, as a child, that some of it was just stories to give an idea of God and weren’t supposed to be taken absolutely literally. I also realised that a lot of the Bible stories that had seemed exciting when I was younger, were actually very cruel with God acting on a whim sometimes and in a way that I considered unfair and illogical. So I started to think about it more, and I decided that there was no proof that God existed – at least not the god of the Christian Bible any more than the god or gods of any other religion. I suppose it was realising that there was no consensus on god (because there were so many different religions) that opened my eyes and mind. I tend towards atheism actually, but I don’t know for sure so I’d say I was an agnostic. That isn’t hedging my bets, it’s because I don’t presume to make a 100% decision based on incomplete knowledge. To be frank, I see no evidence for God, but maybe there’s something beyond anything we know. If there is a god, I don’t really see him as the Bible god (or any kind of god that punishes us or demands certain rites to satisfy him or her).
Back to homosexuality:- you give the example of Adam and Eve as being the foundation of marriage. You also list sins such as incest. Surely Adam and Eve’s children could only reproduce by incest? I mean that in all seriousness. Secondly, I object to the patriarchal nature of the creation story. Women are shown as inferior to men. I know this is a feature of other creation stories, eg Pandora’s Box, where it’s Pandora who, like Eve, brings bad things on the world. I take the prevalence of these misogynistic stories to be proof not that they’re true, but that they are reflections of how men have attempted to subjugate women throughout history.
See, that’s what annoys me about the Christian objection to same sex marriage. People say that marriage is as the Bible defines – ie a Christian concept – and same sex couples don’t fit in to that so they can’t get married. But although I’m happy for churches to choose who to marry (eg many won’t marry divorcees), I strongly object to them trying to inflict their beliefs on outside/secular society. If a divorced person isn’t allowed to marry in a church, they just get married in a civil ceremony, but it’s still considered a marriage. And why stop at divorced people? What about Muslim marriages? They obviously aren’t Christian so are they wrong too? No, only homosexuals get picked on.
Again, I would say to you that I’d like more proof that homosexuality is immoral. I’ll give an example. Personally – and I know this is mean of me, but it’s true – I find extremely obese people unattractive. I can’t imagine being attracted to them in any way. I don’t understand people who are even though I’ve tried to. I’m certainly not alone in my feelings. However, it’s a BIG jump from that to saying that anyone who is attracted to obese people must be ‘immoral’ or disgusting in some way. I would NEVER say that. My opinion is just that – an opinion. Yet Christians seem happy to say that homosexuality of itself is immoral. It’s not. But once you say that it is, of course you can find all kinds of ‘proof’ that it’s wrong because you just look for mention of ‘sexual immorality’ and you’ve decided that that includes homosexuality. I could decide that being obese contributed to global warming (it doesn’t and there’s no evidence for that, but that doesn’t matter, I BELIEVE it to be so). Therefore any mention of global warming being a bad thing, I could extrapolate to meaning being obese is a bad thing. I’ve set up a situation in which I’m always right, BUT it’s based on a fallacy.
Another quick question for you: When did you decide to be heterosexual?
EasThis is my second attempt to send this
Hey Iris: glad to hear from you again…I hope we can continue this for awhile – it’s giving me a need to refresh my research, thinking, reading, to get a stronger understanding of my belief system.
You said, “Another quick question for you: When did you decide to be heterosexual?”
I guess the answer is in 1Genesis: 26-28– it shows that I was“made that way” so I could help carry out God’s desire – couldn’t do it if I weren’t heterosexual.
26 ¶ And God said, Let aus bmake cman in our dimage, after our elikeness: and let them have fdominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.
27So God created man in his own aimage, in the image of God created he him; male and bfemale created he them.
28 And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be afruitful, and bmultiply, and creplenish the dearth, and subdue it: and have edominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.
About your question about incest:
God had a very special plan for the human race, He wanted us all to be related. We weren’t to be just strangers living together on this planet, but family. So He created two perfect human beings, telling them to be fruitful and multiply.
Incest in the Bible is an interesting issue. In the beginning, incest was not only permissible but necessary. God created only two humans, Adam and Eve, and all other humans are their direct descendants. Thus, at least that first generation after Adam and Eve had to marry their full-blooded brothers or sisters. Once the first generation had reproduced, marriages could take place between brothers and sisters, between cousins, and between uncles/aunts and nieces/nephews.
When the flood occurred, this situation was repeated — there was one senior couple (Noah and his wife), and there were three couples consisting of Noah’s sons and their wives. Again, brothers and sisters probably married, as well as cousins, and uncles/aunts with their nieces/nephews.
The specific biblical commands against incest do not appear until the time of the Mosaic Law. Prior to that time, these relationships do not appear to have been condemned explicitly.
It seems odd to us today but incest wasn’t outlawed by God until the Law of Moses. It may have been around that time that generations of degenerative genetic mutations began to take a toll on our DNA. God outlawed incest for our protection. It became (and remains) dangerous for close relatives to procreate because of shared genetic defects which become expressed in their children causing severe deformities and other problems.
You said, “You misjudge me. Yes, I DID read the Bible (yes, ALL of it). I read it when I was a child So, although I freely admit that I don’t remember all that much of the Bible, I HAVE read it all more than once.”
My background is similar to yours Iris. I didn’t have any strong spiritual guidance when I was growing up and my attitude towards God and the Bible, was “I don’t have any interest in it, don’t care to read the Bible, and God’s not important in my life.”
But as the years passed, I started looking at my life and world view with serious interest a few years ago, so I started going to various fundamental churches…studying the Bible and read books by authoritative Biblical scholars – who read and understood 5, 6, 7 ancient languages and offered answers to serious questions which made sense to me. I was becoming a discriminating reader and looked at different interpretations and viewpoints that they offered. I was at a point where I either closed my mind or opened my mind to understanding about where I came from and where I was eventually going.
Some teachers/preachers gave me deep understanding and an organized approach to who and what Jesus Christ really offered to mankind. I don’t belong to any church, but I am into serious Bible study every day and feel that I’m growing as a “true Christian” and feel that I’m like a disciple (a learner) of Jesus’ teachings – much like those who were chosen by Jesus.
You said “…what annoys me about the Christian objection to same sex marriage. People say that marriage is as the Bible defines – ie a Christian concept – and same sex couples don’t fit in to that so they can’t get married…; I strongly object to them trying to inflict their beliefs on outside/secular society.”
Here is where the activist homosexual agenda messed up “big time.” as I see it.
They were a minority group 2%-3% of our population and they “demanded” to change the marriage law that was established over 4,000 years ago and followed by millions of Jews, Christians and Muslims –so that marriage MUST NOW include any GLBT couple in that sacrament. They went “too fast, too soon.” Instead they should have used the laws, politics, etc. to take one thing at a time and get benefits that marriage offers into the same-sex” arrangement, – should have given more time for the change to happen, instead of trying for a“knock out” early in the fight. That’s why there’s such a strong backlash by the religious establishment.
But all that doesn’t bother me because I know the major changes that’ll happen today…tomorrow…and in the distant future. Reading Revelation has given me tremendous insight as to what’s happening here and worldwide. It’s a magnificent story that has all the adventure, mystery, unexpected discoveries that any great book could offer. It’s too bad that so many “Christians” are either afraid of the contents, think it too difficult, or some other reason to ignore it – even though it holds their future.
I’ll end here and answer your other questions soon. This is getting too lengthy
Hi Hank. By the way, Revelations was my favourite book too – although no doubt for different reasons than yours.
You say: “Here is where the activist homosexual agenda messed up “big time.” as I see it. “They were a minority group 2%-3% of our population and they “demanded” to change the marriage law that was established over 4,000 years ago and followed by millions of Jews, Christians and Muslims –so that marriage MUST NOW include any GLBT couple in that sacrament. They went “too fast, too soon.” Instead they should have used the laws, politics, etc. to take one thing at a time and get benefits that marriage offers into the same-sex” arrangement, – should have given more time for the change to happen, instead of trying for a“knock out” early in the fight. That’s why there’s such a strong backlash by the religious establishment.”
I strongly disagree with this. Firstly, the church didn’t invent marriage, it was around as a kind of social contract long before the Bible; secondly, many people, eg atheists, don’t see marriage as a sacrament at all – yet no-one stops THEM getting married; thirdly, I believe the percentage of LGBT people is higher than 2-3%. But, ignoring that statistical point, what I MAINLY object to in what you’ve said is that what you’re suggesting (don’t go for marriage, go for some differently-named agreement that offers similar rights because marriage is ‘special’ and is only one man, one woman) is exactly what the UK did. In the UK, in order to keep the word ‘marriage’ special for religious groups and in order to not offend or annoy them, the term Civil Partnerships was chosen. Sounds ideal, eh? BUT, it’s not ideal. Christian groups in the UK have IGNORED this concession and the avoidance of the word ‘marriage’ so as to not offend them. They just carry right on and attack Civil Partnerships in precisely the same way they would have attacked gay marriages, if that had been the term chosen. I was extrenely shocked by this – yes, I expected relgious groups to carry on saying homosexuality was a sin, etc, but their attitude has been aggressive and bigoted and illogical. They won by keeping the word ‘marriage’ special, but now they’re showing their true colours – a very nasty prejudice against people who are different, a prejudice that will never be satisfied, and one which I consider to be utterly against the spirit of christianity.
Thank you for explaining about the incest in the Bible. Yes, incest can cause horrible problems for any children born of it – so it’s a bad idea for many reasons. However, God obviously changed his attitude towards it as a result of time and circumstances, and no-one (I hope!) tries to defend incest by citing Genesis. This shows that some parts of the Bible become obsolete as new parts take over. To my mind this is what happened with homosexuality – it was described as bad and unclean in the OT for specific reasons, which I’ve mentioned before, but in the NT the situation had changed and moved on.
I asked when you decided to become heterosexual and you answered that you were “made that way”. Well, I believe that God, if he exists, made ME the way I am. Can you imagine how upsetting it is when other people say who I AM is wrong? Homosexuality is a natural (God-made, if you wish) variation in our beautiful world. The obsession about going forth and multiplying is misguided. It doesn’t apply to each person as an individual, only to society as a whole. Different people have different roles to perform in society, all working towards the common good. I’d also add that the desire for children can be present in LGBT people too, and is separate from sexuality. I know many straight people who actively dislike children and wouldn’t dream of having them (and that’s sensible because they probably wouldn’t make good parents), and also many LGBT people who love children and either have their own or have adopted or fostered children who need caring for.
Just very quickly now to keep this at a readable length:- you mention ‘spiritual guidance’ and that the Bible gave you that. I too look to behave in a moral, caring way, but that isn’t because I do that to comply with the word of any god, it’s something that comes from within. Surely most people know instinctively as human beings that it’s wrong to hurt others? Without religion, people would still largely behave in a decent way.
Another question: what do you think of the use of the Bible to try to prevent interracial marriage?
Hey Iris. Just a brief reply to some of your questions.
You said, “you mention ‘spiritual guidance’ and that the Bible gave you that. I too look to behave in a moral, caring way, but that isn’t because I do that to comply with the word of any god, it’s something that comes from within. Surely most people know instinctively as human beings that it’s wrong to hurt others? Without religion, people would still largely behave in a decent way.”
I disagree totally for many reasons I see mankind as depraved, evil and God-hating and could never do good by themselves. In fact, look at the history of mankind…they couldn’t even keep the 10 commandments, which only listed a very few sinful, evil behavior. Here’s the way I see it as it all progressed, or
degressed, in history:
In the beginning, Adam and Eve were not created with the evil nature we see displayed in all of mankind.
God then purposefully allowed them to be exposed to and tested by Satan, who most definitely had a different set of beliefs, attitudes, purposes, and character than God. Without interference from God, they freely made the choice to subject themselves to the evil influence of that malevolent spirit. That event initiated the corruption of man’s heart. Perhaps nowhere in all of Scripture is there a clearer example of the truth of I Corinthians 15:33: “Evil communications corrupt good manners.”
Comparing our contact with Satan to Adam and Eve’s, a sobering aspect is that God shows they were fully aware of Satan when he communicated with them. However, we realize that a spirit being can communicate with a human by transferring thoughts, and the person might never know it! He would assume the thoughts were completely generated within himself.
This began not only their personal corruption but also this present, evil world, as Paul calls it in Galatians 1:4. All it took was one contact with, communication from, and submission to that very evil source to effect a profound change from what they had been. The process did not stop with them, as Romans 5:12 confirms, “Therefore, just as through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned.” Adam and Eve passed on the corrupt products of their encounter with Satan to their children, and each of us, in turn, has sinned as willingly as our first ancestors did.
When we are born, innocent of any sin of our own, we enter into a 6,000-year-old, ready-made world that is permeated with the spirit of Satan and his demons, as well as with the evil cultures they generated through a thoroughly deceived mankind. In consequence, unbeknownst to us, we face a double-barreled challenge to our innocence: from demons as well as from this world.
Six thousand years of human history exhibit that we very quickly absorb the course of the world around us and lose our innocence, becoming self-centered and deceived like everybody else (Revelation 12:9). The vast majority in this world is utterly unaware that they are in bondage to Satan—so unaware that most would scoff if told so. Even if informed through the preaching of the gospel, they do not fully grasp either the extent or the importance of these factors unless God draws them by opening their eyes spiritually (John 6:44-45).
Another question: what do you think of the use of the Bible to try to prevent interracial marriage.
As a starting point, there are no references in scripture that forbid interracial marriages, although some people take scriptures out of context to prove otherwise.
First, everyone on Earth descended from Adam and Eve and later through Noah and his sons. The text in Genesis chapter 11, which describes events that took place after the flood, reveals that the people on the Earth were together and spoke one language. At that time, God confused their languages and they became scattered from there all over the face of the earth. As a result, the different groups developed different physical characteristics, because of dominant characteristics in their shared gene pools. (This would include things like eye shape, skin color, hair texture, height, and so forth.) The point is that everyone came from one source.
As I see it and accept it, the bottom line is that the Bible forbids marriages that would take people away from getting right (and staying right) with God.
It has nothing to do with race
Thank you, Hank. I’m genuinely interested in your answers because I want to understand why you think like you do. Sorry I ask lots of questions, but your posts make me think of more. :D
With regard to race:- you say that some scriptures were taken out of context in an attempt to prove that interracial marriage was wrong. I agree with you. There could be two reasons for that:- either, the people doing so were bigots knowingly looking for justification for their own prejudice; or, being more charitable, they genuinely believed that what they were saying was right (even though most people now judge it to be wrong). Homosexuality is the same, in my opinion. I think that people are either using the Bible to justify their own prejudice (which may just have arisen from fear and lack of understanding, rather than necessarily any viciousness), or they genuinely believe that God through the Bible is saying that homosexuality is wrong. Those in the first group should stop using the Bible to make excuses for their own bigotry; those in the second group (I’m inclined to put you in that group) could think more on the subject and be open to the possibility they may be wrong in their interpretation, just as those who said the Bible banned interracial marriage were wrong.
Briefly, I was told that Sodom was destroyed by God because its inhabitants were inhospitable to strangers and were consumed by avarice. When I asked about homosexuality because I’d heard that story quoted to ‘prove’ it was wrong, my teacher told me that their ‘sin’ wasn’t being homosexual – they were punished for glorying in rape and cruelty. What are your opinions on this?
I’m fascinated (genuinely :)) by your explanation of Satan and Adam and Eve. Some questions:
1) Why did God create Adam and Eve so that they were prone to sin? Surely he’d only just made them so any weakness in them was God’s fault? Why did he test them in this way?
2) Why can’t God ever seem to win in the battle with Satan? There constantly seem to be more examples of ‘evil people’ being wiped out by God, eg in the flood. Why doesn’t God make people uncorruptible? Or why doesn’t he make his presence more widely known on Earth so that people would be less likely to be evil and Satan would have a harder job?
3) You say that you feel confident that you are ‘following God’s word’ by living strictly by what the Bible says, but isn’t it correct that the Bible as it existed today is contradictory, eg the Gospels contradict each other in some places; and isn’t it also true that the Bible is a revised, edited version? What about the Apocrypha, in particular the Gospel of Thomas? MEN have chosen what we read in the Bible not God, so how do you know it accurately represents what God wishes us to know?
Hey Iris…You said …”Thank you for explaining about the incest in the Bible. Yes, incest can cause horrible problems for any children born of it – so it’s a bad idea for many reasons.
However, God obviously changed his attitude towards it as a result of time and circumstances, and no-one (I hope!) tries to defend incest by citing Genesis. This shows that some parts of the Bible become obsolete as new parts take over. To my mind this is what happened with homosexuality – it was described as bad and unclean in the OT for specific reasons, which I’ve mentioned before, but in the NT the situation had changed and moved on.”
I would disagree with you that “God obviously changed his attitude….this shows that some parts of the Bible become obsolete as new parts take over. To my mind that is what happened with homosexuality…it was described as bad and unclean in the OT for specific reasons….but in the NT the situation had changed and moved on.”
1Cor.14:33 …for God is not a God of confusion but of peace, as in all churches of the saints.”
God is unchangeable in His character and counsel, that is, as viewed in Himself. Many Scriptures assert that God is the same, that He never changes (Mal. 3:6), that with Him there is no variation or shadow due to change (Jas. 1:17). There is no fickleness in God. By this we shall know that we are of the truth, and reassure our hearts before hint whenever our hearts condemn us, for God is greater than our hearts, and he knows (I John 3:19, 20).
He cannot say one thing in the OT and then deny or remove it from the NT. Sometimes I have to read numerous and various Bible scholars to understand the meaning of certain verses. Even when they look contradictory or confusing, I find that someone who studies the Scriptures in 5,6,7 original ancient languages can give clarity to the verse. You have to rely on Biblical and Archeological scholars to make clear some parts of the Bible.
So in our limited knowledge of the Holy Bible, we must be very careful to make a statement that cannot be backed up with the truth, even when the truth may hurt. My life has changed 100% since I accepted Jesus as my Lord and Savior – I no longer live the life I did for most of my life, and I’ve found peace and joy knowing and now increasing my Biblical understanding.
The way I see it, is there’s a sense in which the aim of every person’s life is to be like God. We’re all striving to imitate God in one way or another. Some attempts to be like God are honored by the Lord and rewarded with His favor, and there’s the other radical attempt that permits us to accept the Satanic temptation to be like God (Gen. 3:5) and we attempt to replace God’s authority with our own, while the other is an attempt to demonstrate godliness as a moral virtue by denying our carnal nature and accepting God’s nature, so to speak.
God said, Gen:1:26…Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness. Man, of course, by no means possesses all the powers, characteristics and attributes of the great Creator God. Nevertheless, we have been created as much as is physically possible in God’s own image and likeness. In other words, just as children resemble their human parents, so do all humans resemble our Creator. Although God is spirit (John 4:24) rather than a physical being, all humans bear a physical resemblance to Him. He actually showed Moses His back in His glorified form (Exodus 33:18-23). In regard to such physical resemblance, it is noteworthy that Jesus Christ appeared in human form and shape to His disciples after the resurrection. In the Transfiguration account (Matthew 17:1-9), Jesus also appeared in the same glorified form to Peter, James and John.
The message of the Bible shows that God created man with a mind capable of communicating with God and thinking like He thinks. And God wants us to be even more like Him—both in character and, ultimately, in composition. Our destiny is to be like Jesus Christ now is as the glorified Son of God (1 John 3:2).
The basic character of godly morality was shown in the “probation or testing” placed upon Adam and Eve in the Garden. God had granted them permission to eat of any tree of the garden, save one. They were not to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil not because its fruit was injected with some literal poison that was not good for them, but as a test of whether they would live solely under the authority of God’s word to them. God had forbidden it. Would they, despite their personal desires, submit to His command on His simple say-so? Would they do their duty on the sheer basis that it was their duty? Or would they evaluate the command of God on the basis of some external standard of reasonableness, practicality. and human benefit?
Satan beguiled Eve, denying what God had told her, and thereby leading her to assume the authoritative, neutral position of determining for herself whether God’s “hypothesis” or Satan’s “hypothesis” was true. Satan implied that God’s commands were harsh, too stringent, unreasonable. He in effect condemned the supreme, absolute, and unchallengeable authority of God. He went on to suggest that God is in fact jealous, prohibiting Adam and Eve from eating of the tree lest they become like Him — lest they become rivals to Him in determining what is good and evil.
Thus our first parents were led to seek a lifestyle which was not bound by law from God; thus they were tempted into deciding for themselves what would count as good and evil. Law would not be laid down to them by God, for they would lay it down for themselves. Demonstrating sin’s lawlessness (I John 3:4) they became “like God” — law-givers of their own making and authority. God’s law, which should have been their delight, became burdensome to them.
Moreover, God’s character is eternal and unchanging. “I am the Lord, I change not” (Mal. 3:6). There is no variableness in Him (James 1:17). From everlasting to everlasting He is God (Ps. 90:2). Therefore, because His holiness is unchanging, the law which reflects that holiness cannot be changed. Whether we read in the Old or New Testaments, we find that a man’s attitude toward God’s law is an index of his relationship to God himself (Ps. 1; Rom. 8:1-8). As John so plainly says, “The one who says ‘I have come to know Him,’ and does not keep His commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him” (I John 2:4). God’s unchanging holiness and thereby His unchanging law is an abiding standard of knowing Him and being like Him.
Throughout our life we face temptations by Satan, because he hates those who follow God and the eternal battle for man continues…to accept God or to reject God, and be a follower of Satan.
Even true Christians are tempted by Satan or his demons throughout their lives, and that’s why Jesus said to study the Scriptures
I asked when you decided to become heterosexual and you answered that you were “made that way”. Well, I believe that God, if he exists, made ME the way I am. Can you imagine how upsetting it is when other people say who I AM is wrong? Homosexuality is a natural (God-made, if you wish) variation in our beautiful world. The obsession about going forth and multiplying is misguided. It doesn’t apply to each person as an individual, only to society as a whole. Different people have different roles to perform in society, all working towards the common good. I’d also add that the desire for children can be present in LGBT people too, and is separate from sexuality. I know many straight people who actively dislike children and wouldn’t dream of having them (and that’s sensible because they probably wouldn’t make good parents), and also many LGBT people who love children and either have their own or have adopted or fostered children who need caring for
You make great points Iris and with them you show the great imperfections of mankind – in heterosexual and homosexual behavior. I truly feel sorry for the upsetting reaction when other people say who I AM is wrong.
That’s a huge confrontation that creates many problems for you and others and I keep learning and getting more insight to understanding the Holy Bible in many important areas – not that I have most or even many answers to the deeper questions of man’s behavior. But I am deeply appreciative that for whatever reason God has opened my mind to search and do Bible Study as I’m doing these past couple of years. But I’m starting to understand the true meaning of God’s love for us.
I believe that very few “Christians” understand the deepest meaning of: John 3:16 – For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.” …This saying totally blows my mind as far beginning to understand how much God loves His creation of man. I’ve recently begun to get a more deeper meaning of this action by God, but I’m still far from knowing the depth of this act. I would guess the vast majority of people worldwide have no inclination of what this meant to sinful mankind and what kind of future it gave to us because He actually sent His Son to take on all the sins of mankind and die for us so that we can find salvation for all of our weaknesses and sins in our lives and have a chance to spend eternity with God in heaven. That’s an offer I’m glad I didn’t refuse.
I’ll answer a couple of your other questions but I wanted to send this to you Iris.
I’ll try to answer your latest questions in order:
You said, “Briefly, I was told that Sodom was destroyed by God because its inhabitants were inhospitable to strangers and were consumed by avarice. When I asked about homosexuality because I’d heard that story quoted to ‘prove’ it was wrong, my teacher told me that their ‘sin’ wasn’t being homosexual – they were punished for glorying in rape and cruelty. What are your opinions on this?”
I’ve read many versions by homosexuals to explain the events in Sodom and Gomorrah but I’m not to argue each of theirs, because it’s too lengthy and too many, and much of it is stretching the interpretation of Biblical words and human actions, such as inhospitality, to “know them,”demanding to “see the visitor’s credentials,” “raping “ the two visitors, plus a few others comments.
Nowhere in the Bible is inhospitality listed as an abomination., unlike homosexual behavior (Lev. 18:22)…also it said, “the men of the city of the city…surrounded the house…both young and old, all the people from every quarter…but it doesn’t say that any women were included…if it was about “inhospitality” only, why were the women excluded? Was it only about men and their homosexual desires?
Also in the NT book of Jude , verse 7…that Sodom and Gomorrah had “given themselves over to sexual immorality and gone after strange flesh…suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.”
According to P.Michael Ukleja, “Of the 12 times the Hebrew word “know” occurs in Genesis, 10 times it means to have intercourse. Plus if the men were heterosexual, why didn’t they accept Lot’s offer of his two virgin daughters?
This is a heated argument and will go on well into the future, even though same-sex unions will be accepted in more states.
I’m fascinated (genuinely :)) by your explanation of Satan and Adam and Eve. Some questions:
1) Why did God create Adam and Eve so that they were prone to sin? Surely he’d only just made them so any weakness in them was God’s fault? Why did he test them in this way?
Because God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness.” Gen. 1:26. They were given free will and were not robot-like creations, because God has the ability to make choices He made man to have that same quality.
Viewing that the image that God endues man with are some of His divine attributes… thereby separating and making him different from the beasts….some of these special Godlike qualities which man is permitted to share are: language, creativity, love, holiness, immortality and freedom. There are others that can be added to this list. It boils down that man, like God, has an intelligence, a mind, and the ability to make his own choices and decisions that God does not make for him. But man can do good things or evil things (but God cannot do evil things) so man is different in that respect that he can reject God. But even in man’s rejection of God, a final choice is available to accept Jesus Christ and become acceptable in God’s eyes.
2) Why can’t God ever seem to win in the battle with Satan? There constantly seem to be more examples of ‘evil people’ being wiped out by God, eg in the flood. Why doesn’t God make people incorruptible? Or why doesn’t he make his presence more widely known on Earth so that people would be less likely to be evil and Satan would have a harder job?
God had this entire plan worked out before time began. I guess that He even knew that Satan would do what he did and challenge God’s authority and would be cast out of heaven. Why
he was cast down to earth to be its ruler is something we don’t know. But all we can do is follow what the Bible reveals to us and either follow God or Satan. We have the free will to do what we choose.
Satan has been permitted to be the invisible god of this world and is the prime deceiver of men and women. He’s the father of lies, and continually and cleverly lies and deceives mankind, and so his semon servants. In fact lying becomes so common to people under Satan’s influence that they often find it easier to tell a lie than to tell the truth. It’s up to each individual (you and me) to genuinely study the Bible and to prove what Jesus and the early apostles taught and practiced.
Sin and rebellion by its nature is contagious. Its effects are never confined to only the one who sins. It grows. It spreads and seeks to involve others as well. Eve, upon eating the fruit immediately sought the one she was suppose to be a helper to, Adam. She was the source of Adam’s temptation, not Satan. I Timothy 2:14, states Adam was not deceived. He fully and completely knew what he was doing in taking the fruit.
Satan’s goal was to get Adam to sin. He used Eve’s gullibility and weaker nature to get at man. Adam saw that Eve had eaten of the fruit, and he must have concluded that she was not dead and thus God must have lied to them. He most likely based his response to a false perception of what he thought the situation was. Instead of believing God, he believed what his eyes saw and what his own wisdom concluded was real. He was wrong! His error was deadly and he willing accepted his own wisdom over the expressed Word of God.
The verse further states that it was Eve who was in transgression or became the sinner. Yet, Romans 5:12, 18, and I Corinthians 15:22, the Bible lays the guilt to Adam, not Eve. The responsibility rests on the shoulders of Adam. Adam was made first, and Eve was from Adam and thus all of mankind is the descendent of him.
3) You say that you feel confident that you are ‘following God’s word’ by living strictly by what the Bible says, but isn’t it correct that the Bible as it existed today is contradictory, eg the Gospels contradict each other in some places; and isn’t it also true that the Bible is a revised, edited version? What about the Apocrypha, in particular the Gospel of Thomas? MEN have chosen what we read in the Bible not God, so how do you know it accurately represents what God wishes us to know?
I’m sending an answer on the next comment – too lengthy to add here.
About your question about the Bible, I’m forwarding this treatise, rather than my trying to write something better. This presents my belief about the Holy Bible. It’s somewhat
lengthy, but worth reading if you want a thorough understanding rather than picking up bits and pieces from people who are more opinionated rather than educated in the Bible.
This is a treatise on the inerrancy of the Bible.
It examines how Jesus would have answered the question:
“Is the Bible really God’s word?”
It does this by critically examining what the New Testament
writers record that Jesus said about the Scriptures.
© Copyright 1994, 1996 Richard L. Routh
All rights reserved but the author gives permission to
print and distribute the entire text of this treatise
provided it is distributed in its entirety.
What does God think about the Bible? Does that seem to be an out-of-place question? There is much debate among modern-day theologians about the authority and authenticity of Scripture. Inerrancy is another word that is frequently used. Billy Graham made this statement about the subject in his book Storm Warning:
In numerous churches the Bible is treated as a collection of fairy tales and fables written by half-educated men of an ancient time. While it offers challenging spiritual myths and wholesome encouragement, some “modern” churches seem to feel that no one should go to the Bible expecting to find absolute truth.
Such teaching is an abomination before God. Nothing could be more destructive to true faith and peace on earth. In the face of such a growing storm, the world desperately needs moorings, and God has given us that anchor in His Word, the Bible (pp. 78-79).
As we listen to so many different voices critically dissect these ancient writings, does it not make sense to consider what Christ Himself had to say on the subject?
Over the centuries, the Church has maintained an exalted view of Scripture, believing it to be the very word of God. However, when men’s hearts are examined, and trapped, by the bright convicting searchlight of Scripture, some invent ways to discredit its authority. Some of these are quite creative and clever, and given that “the heart is more deceitful than all else” (Jeremiah 17:9), these degradations of God’s word are presented apparently with utmost sincerity. This treatise is written for the Christian who desires to know the truth but is confused or disturbed by the persuasive arguments of some modern day theologians. That many are confused is not surprising. There are multitudes of mind-stretching and intellectually challenging arguments on the subject. Pondering these will likely cause one to ask questions about the authority of Scripture.
Some cast doubt on the authority of Scripture by claiming that significant portions of the Old Testament Scriptures are the combined efforts of many different editors who over the centuries added their own perspectives and themes to the evolving texts. This theory, known as the “Documentary Hypothesis” was originated in modern times because, for a while, some “learned” scholars had concluded that no written form of a language existed at the time of Moses.
As they hypothesized how the Mosaic writings might then have come into being, they conjectured, based on no currently standing historical or archaeological evidence, that multiple editors constructed these writings from the folklore and partial manuscripts handed down in later generations. These hypothesized and anonymous editors go by the names of J (for the Jehovah perspective), E (for the Elohim perspective), etc. Since the initial fabrication of this hypothesis, its premise has been proved false by the discovery of the “black stele” on which the detailed laws of Hammurabi were written at least three centuries prior to the time of Moses.
However, instead of recanting this “Documentary Hypothesis,” those minds that imagined it were unwilling to do so; so it continues to be taught today. Only now the case for the existence and contribution of these multiple editors is based primarily on the diversity of style and theme in Scripture. My personal response to those who advocate this theory of multiple editors is that, aside from ignoring history as well as the strict ritual religiously used by the ancient Jews to copy and preserve Scripture in its original form, they have apparently failed to recognize that the diversity in creation itself points to a God who delights in diversity. His own being is presented to us in three persons. If God is diverse in His own being, and if the diversity of the Creator is obviously reflected in his creation prolific with diversity, then why should one not expect to find diversity in a set of writings that themselves claim to be the thoughts and words of this single God of diversity? But my response to the proponents of this or other discrediting theories is only one man’s opinion. For those who seek to know the truth, it can be quite confusing and debilitating to hear men debating among themselves about these theories. Would it not be far more valuable to hear the words of Jesus Christ on this subject?
But how can we be reasonably sure that we have the sayings of Jesus Christ accurately recorded and available to us? Those who advocate the “Documentary Hypothesis” of multiple editors modifying Scripture down through the ages (the earliest portions of the Old Testament were probably written in the 15th century B.C.) tend to restrict this hypothesis to the Old Testament writings. The reason for this is the overwhelming evidence that the Greek manuscripts we have available to us today are so close to the original New Testament writings, that no significant grounds for debate as to its authenticity as a primary document remain. (It was written by eyewitnesses or their secretaries, completed probably prior to 80 A.D., and the great multitude of existing New Testament manuscripts allow us to reconstruct the original Greek documents. Additionally, there are many first and second century secular writers who attest to the existence, authorships, and authenticity of account of the New Testament writings.)
Furthermore, the “Documentary Hypothesis” claim is required by literary history to restrict itself to the fact that all significant modifications to Old Testament Scriptures must have been made prior to the first century since it can be demonstrated by extant documents of that time that the present day versions of the Massoretic Old Testament texts are accurate copies of the first century version of Old Testament Scripture (with the exception that vowels have since been inserted to assist with pronunciation, not significantly changing any words or meaning).(Endnote #1)
Because the Old Testament Scriptures at the time of Christ are nearly identical to the present day version and because there is no significant scholarly debate as to the authenticity of the modern Greek version of the Gospels as accurate copies of the primary documents (with the exception that Matthew may have been originally written in Aramaic and translated into Greek very soon after its writing), then it makes a great deal of sense to examine what Jesus Christ had to say about how we ought to view Old Testament Scripture as recorded in these Gospel writings. Since the average reader of this treatise will not speak Greek, Scripture quotes used herein come from the New American Standard Version, except in a few cases when the Greek itself was deemed necessary which is quoted from The Greek New Testament edited by Kurt Aland, et al.
There is a second motivation for writing this treatise. For some who seek the truth, there is an unsatisfying shallowness to simply parroting the traditional claim that Scripture is inerrant without understanding the justification for that claim. Scripture itself instructs Christians to be “ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you” (I Peter 3:15).
In preparing an answer, I think one will receive a deeper blessing that comes from better appreciating the richness and depth and the fuller implications of the authority of Scripture. I think that many Christians would benefit from being encouraged to deepen their view of the authority of Scripture and, in doing so, would be encouraged by a deeper understanding of God and His purpose for us. This would also help them properly respond to those who would challenge their faith. It is for this purpose of building up and equipping the Saints to be prepared to give a reason for the hope that is in us that this treatise is written.
There are a plethora of good intellectual arguments to support the authority of Scripture. Although not the subject of this treatise, it is useful to mention just a few of them. The authority of Scripture can be addressed from many vantage points. For one, archaeology provides an impressive and growing set of evidences for the consistent accuracy of Scripture. Impressive arguments can be made for the authority of Scripture because of the miraculous logical consistency of theme and lack of contradiction despite the fact that Scripture has had many authors in many centuries, each with diverse backgrounds. Certainly the record of the Biblical prophesies and their fulfillment is at least astonishing and presents a compelling argument that their authorship is credited to someone with the power to see and know the future unlike man.
Having been educated to the doctorate level in modern sciences, I think it is impressive that after much study of the Scriptures, I am unaware of any single scientific inaccuracy in these ancient writings. All of these vantage points when considered together form an impressive and overwhelmingly convincing argument for the authority and authenticity of Scripture as the Word of God. But I have come to believe that all these collectively do not form the strongest argument for the authority of Scripture. Nor do they form the most complete case to rebuff those who say that not all Scripture is the Word of God, but only that it “contains” (in some parts, presumably to be determined by the reader because he is smarter than Scripture and qualified as its judge) the Word of God.
The strongest and clearest argument for the authority and authenticity of Scripture can be made by examining the convictions that Christ himself held of Scripture. This treatise intends to examine what Christ, God in the flesh, said concerning the authority of Scripture. His words are powerful and provide an impressive and very strong, perhaps the strongest, argument for the inerrancy, but beyond that, the historically defining authority of Scripture.
In the Gospel writings, Jesus Christ was succinct and startlingly pointed about the authority of Scripture. I hope and pray that my discussions herein of His words on the subject will help you better understand some of the riches of what God himself, in human form, has said, and what I believe God would have us understand, about the authority of Scripture. It has been for me a very settling discovery. I hope you will find it the same.
Iris, there are 7 chapters to the entire treatise, but I’m not
sending it to you as it’s very, very long.
Arrgh! Pink News lost my long post! Have to rewrite
Hank, I give up trying to post my post for now! I’ll try again later today. I’ve tried everything but Pink News keeps not posting it then saying it’s a duplicate!
Hi Hank – Excuse the briefness of this reply (extra work hours this week). I’ll respond to all your points more fully in a few days, but I just wanted to start my replies and to say that I’d read your posts and appreciated you taking the time to answer :)
You said “1Cor.14:33 …for God is not a God of confusion but of peace, as in all churches of the saints.” God is unchangeable in His character and counsel, that is, as viewed in Himself. Many Scriptures assert that God is the same, that He never changes (Mal. 3:6), that with Him there is no variation or shadow due to change (Jas. 1:17). There is no fickleness in God.”
I agree that God may be unchanging in his nature, but that doesn’t mean he can’t – to use a silly phrase – move with the times. The advice or counsel he may have given people hundreds of years ago would be different from what he would give now. I don’t mean to say that God’s fickle and changing his basic nature, what I was trying to say was that God, if he exists, would be wise enough to be adaptable.
The example I gave was incest. That was necessary initially to allow Adam and Eve and their children to reproduce (there was no other choice), but later on, God overrode this when he saw the bad effects of continued incest – ie deformities in the children of close relatives. So – although God’s basic nature, his Goodness, if you wish to call it that, remains unchanging, he adapts to circumstances and elaborates on or changes his advice, not in a bad, fickle way, but in an intelligent way.
Personally, I will never believe that the anti-homosexuality verses in the Bible are anything more than the word of MAN. As I said, there was a great deal of conflict amongst various cults and sects at that time, and it was necessary for the leaders of one sect, Christianity, to ensure that it was differentiated from the others and that, in doing so, other sects were shown to be inferior…. (continued below – I hope!)
You quote that old chestnut Lev.18-22: “Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination.” Well, I’m female so that let’s me off the hook, right? ;) But, seriously, that particular passage should be looked at in context. It comes immediately after the section about Molech, an unchristian god/cult. This cult, as did many others at that time, indulged in male/male sexual activity in its temples – for luck, for prosperity, for whatever reason. It was a practice connected with a cult ‘in competition’ with Christianity, therefore it was ‘bad’, as were all the practices of that cult. (Think about the exhortations in the OT to not worship graven images, the Golden Calf, etc, etc – all attempts at blocking religious competitors).
I’d also point out that the sexual activity in this case usually involved straight men having male/male sexual activity for a specific purpose (see above)with temple prostitutes. This is ENTIRELY different from a loving gay relationship. It would be like me condemning prostitution and then someone coming along years later and saying that I must have meant that ALL male/female sexual activity was wrong.
Sorry, Hank – this is all one post, but Pink News keeps losing/stopping my posts so I’m having to split it into bits.
In addition, at that time where, as we can see in many examples, women were treated as ‘inferior’ to men, for a straight man to ‘act like a woman’ by being the passive sexual partner was seen as an affront to virile, superior manhood because it was demeaning yourself and appearing to be a woman (shock, horror!) – which, of course, was shameful and something all men would wish to avoid at that time.
The English translations of Bible use the word ‘abomination’, but, as I’m sure you know, the use of this word in Leviticus had more the meaning of ‘ritually unclean’, and another word was used for acts that were morally wrong or sins.
If you insist on quoting Leviticus with regard to homosexuality, you can’t just ignore all its other verses – the ones that say children who are disrespectful to their parents should be killed; you are permitted to buy slaves from the countries near you and they will become your property; don’t shave your beard; don’t eat pork; don’t wear mixed fibres; don’t eat shrimps.
Final part when Pink News allows!
Do you follow EVERY aspect of Leviticus, Hank? Maybe you do? I don’t want to pre-judge you by saying that you don’t. Please tell me yourself how well you abide by these rules so that I don’t guess wrongly :)
P.S – Some of the points I’ve made above may be familiar to you. You may think ‘Hey! They always say the same thing!’ But don’t disregard it for that reason – why would so many people ‘say the same thing’? Please give what I’ve said your unprejudiced consideration, as I’ve given the points you’ve made my full attention and read them with an open mind :)
Hey Iris: Glad to hear from you again. I’ll send some comments
very shortly — been a busy weekend here for me too.
About the problems with sending your comments, losing them,
getting, etc. That’s happened to me numerous times and with
long comments, it’s frustrating.
Here’s a secret to making it easier. Whenever I write my
message, I always use the option to “copy all” and then “save”
before I send the message. If it doesn’t go through for whatever
reason, you have it saved and all you have to do is “paste” and
you get your message in its entirety and you can try to send it
again. If it says, you are sending a duplicate, than change a
few words at the beginning and then it usually goes through,
if not right now, perhaps 15-30 minutes later.
Good sending Iris. I will write soon on your questions.
Hank, thank you very much for the tip to help with the lost/duplicate posts problem. It always seemes to happen on long posts, doesn’t it? Very annoying! So I appreciate your advice.
Just quickly back to something you said in one of your recent posts which has been in my mind ever since I read it. You said:
“Nowhere in the Bible is inhospitality listed as an abomination., unlike homosexual behavior (Lev. 18:22)…also it said, “the men of the city of the city…surrounded the house…both young and old, all the people from every quarter…but it doesn’t say that any women were included…if it was about “inhospitality” only, why were the women excluded? Was it only about men and their homosexual desires? Also in the NT book of Jude , verse 7…that Sodom and Gomorrah had “given themselves over to sexual immorality and gone after strange flesh…suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.”
According to P.Michael Ukleja, “Of the 12 times the Hebrew word “know” occurs in Genesis, 10 times it means to have intercourse. Plus if the men were heterosexual, why didn’t they accept Lot’s offer of his two virgin daughters?”
Firstly, I agree that the word ‘know’ more than likely means to have sexual relations with. No problem with that bit. But your last sentence horrifies me. I find Lot’s offer of his virgin daughters to be raped abhorrent. Even if Lot had wanted to protect the angels, he could/should have offered himself not his children. Yet we’re supposed to be believe that Lot was a righteous person? More worthy of being saved than his wife whose only crime was looking back? The horrible thing about that episode is NOT that the townspeople refusing Lot’s daughters ‘proves they must have been homosexual’ (it doesn’t), it’s Lot’s awful offer in the first place. In addition, the men (and in my opinion it could have been women too, ‘men’ only being used for the more general meaning of ‘people’) didn’t want to try to make friends/flirt/attract the visitors, they went to the house with the intention of doing them harm, ie raping them. Rape is a power thing – an aggressive, despicable show of power to humiliate and hurt the victim. This is true whether the victim is male or female. And the willingness of the townsmen to seek to rape the male visitors does NOT mean that the townsmen were gay, any more than prison rapists are gay. Prison rape is a tool of power and punishment and it is committed by any man nasty enough to do it – STRAIGHT men included. The townsmen were driven by a cruel desire to hurt and degrade the visitors. THAT’S why they turned down the offer of Lot’s daughters. They weren’t after sex, they wanted to attack and humiliate the strangers (and I’d bet money that the men were HETEROsexual).
If all the men surrounded the house and demanded to ‘know’ the strangers, and even if they were all men not women, quite obviously many of those men would be straight as evidenced by the presence of children in Sodom and the fact that homosexuality occurs in, for arguments’ sake, 5% of the population.
Regarding the section in Jude you refer to that mentions ‘strange flesh’, this refers to the attempt to have sexual relations with angels. I can’t find the precise bit in the Bible but I think it’s in Genesis, the bit about the Nephilim. Basically, angels and Mankind shouldn’t mix their flesh.
Sodom wasn’t destroyed because some of it’s inhabitants were gay. Look at Ezekiel 16 v48-50. Sodom’s sins are mentioned as being pride, greed, laziness and not helping the poor and those in need. Also, Matthew 10 14-15. And I’m sure there’d be more bits if I had the time to look. Again, if homosexuality was a sin, Jesus would have been very clear about it.
My point is that the sexuality of the inhabitants of Sodom was irrelevant. It was their actions – their cruelty, their lawlessness, their greed – that led to them being punished. Even if they did want to commit homosexual rape, that’s irrelevant because it’s the immorality of rape and adultery that was the problem, not the ‘gayness’.
You say that inhospitableness isn’t a sin, but to be friendly towards strangers WAS something that it was written was right to do, eg in Leviticus 19 v33-34. Also in Matthew 25 v35 and 38 – in fact, that whole great bit in Matthew 25 about caring for hungry, thirsty, unclothed strangers….
The idea that Sodom is a story that shows homosexuality is wrong is a relatively recent one. It wasn’t interpreted like that initially. Again, MEN have twisted the Bible for their own purposes.
Can’t send this — 3rd attemptHey Iris: As I said I’m sorry for this long delay — no strong
excuse, but I just let time get out of control and will answer
the above question on Saturday.
In the meantime I think you’d like to hear the following
message — on Revelation, which you like anyway.
borntowin.net Look at the Radio Archives, Select
Year 2009, Select month March, and open Waiting For
Armagedden on March 1. You’ll get some serious understanding
that most people aren’t aware of, one of my favorite teachers.
It’s Sunday a.m. and I got sidetracked about writing on Sat.
I’m doing some research on your comments on Sodom Gomorrah
and hope to get back to you later today. Again, sorry for
this delay, but weekends tend to get hectic and my time
management isn’t all it should be.
Did you get a chance to listen to borntowin.net?
Tried to post numerous times yesterday – thread worse than normally
Splitting my post: Big problems with posting today too. 4th attempt:-No problem, Hank :) Nice to hear from you again. You never have to apologise for taking a while to reply – I know how quickly time flies by. I’ve just opened borntowin.net and’ll listen to what you recommend later today. Thank you.
I look forward to your reply about Sodom and Gomorrah, but don’t worry if it takes a few days. I’ve bookmarked this page and will just check back at intervals, so don’t feel pressured by time. :)
You’ve made very good comments to back up your beliefs and suggested good scripture as “evidence.”
I’ve done much checking and I can’t make a definite statement as to what the final sin(s) made God destroy Sodom – there’s a debate about sexual sins and, inhospitality, stinginess, etc. so I’ll just give you some things I copied from a site about
Lot because they pretty much express my thoughts and feelings about Lot.
Whether or not this is enough for you Iris, I’d like to get away from focusing on a single event in the Bible and get onto more important topics if we want to continue our discussions.
I’m doing much reading and Bible Study on the Book of Revelation and am learning much from my “teacher.” I bought a 4 album 32 cassette teaching by H.L. Willmington, and it’s given me much insight.
Iris, do you believe what Revelation says about the “last days?”
I’d also like to know what you think about Jesus? His miracles…His words…His teachings?
Also, how about Satan? To me, these are most basic to my understanding and expectations about the future. I’d like to know your feelings about the above.
About Lot and Sodom:
“If the men of Sodom were evil sinners, then why did Lot move in with them? Certainly he could have pitched his tent elsewhere in the valley. Perhaps, after all, he was not much better than the wicked men of Sodom, whom, at one point later on, he addresses as “my brothers” (Gen. 19:7). And although Lot is saved from Sodom before its destruction, his subsequent doings are hardly exemplary. He ends up having relations with his two daughters, who get him drunk for the occasion, and the two sons born from these shameful unions end up being the ancestors of the Ammonites and Moabites, the only two peoples whom God specifically excluded from the “assembly of the Lord” (Deut. 23:3). None of this, needless to say, reflects very well on Lot”.
”When Lot separated from Abraham, Scripture says, “And Lot chose for himself all the Jordan valley” [Gen. 13:11] –that is, Sodom. For Lot saw that the people of Sodom were plunged in wantonness and he chose Sodom so that he might do as they did.
Similarly, Lot later says to the men of Sodom, “Behold, I have two daughters…” Normally, a man will sacrifice himself for his daughters or his wife: either he kills or is killed [on their behalf]. But Lot was ready to turn over his daughters to them for iniquity! Said God to him: Well then, you can keep them for yourself, and eventually little schoolchildren will laugh about you when they read, “And Lot’s two daughters became pregnant from their father”
“In short. Many interpreters held Lot to have been a righteous and good man, whose generosity–in stark contrast to the stinginess of the Sodomites–was at least one reason for his having been rescued from the doomed city.
“If so, this virtue had no doubt been taught to Lot by his uncle Abraham, whose hospitality to strangers was unparalleled. Despite Lot’s apparent virtues, other interpreters believed him to have been wicked and saw his settling in sinful Sodom as hardly accidental. Whether Sodom’s sin was stinginess or sexual license, such interpreters judged Lot to have been scarcely better than his neighbors. As for Lot’s wife, she was turned into a pillar of salt as a lesson to humanity. His daughters, however, could hardly be blamed for their sin: they believed that all of humanity had perished in the destruction of Sodom, and so were merely seeking to perpetuate the human race.”
“As Lot and his family fled Sodom, Lot’s wife disobeyed the order of the angels not to look back (Gen. 19:17), “and she turned into a pillar of salt” (Gen. 19:26). Interpreters found it difficult to understand what was so bad about Lot’s wife turning around. The Bible did not say, so some felt free to search out their own explanations.
“All interpreters agreed that her deed must somehow have been sinful. Perhaps she turned around more than once, displaying thereby a flagrant disregard for divine commandments; perhaps her gesture testified to her own indecision or lack of faith; or perhaps she was motivated by too great an attachment to her way of life in Sodom or to the sinful relatives she had left behind”:
“It’s interesting, however, that some interpreters seized upon a detail in the biblical text to defend the daughters’ actions. For when the daughters resolve to do this deed, it is because the older says to the younger, “Our father is old, and there is not a man on earth to come to us after the manner of all the earth” (Gen. 19:31).
“Now, in context, this seems to mean merely that Lot’s daughters, dwelling alone in an isolated mountain cave with their father (Gen. 19:30), had no one (“not a man on earth”) to turn to for a mate. But perhaps the expression “not a man on earth” meant more”:
“These virgins, because of their ignorance of external matters and because they saw those cities burned up together with all their inhabitants, supposed that the whole human race [had been destroyed at the same time], and that no one remained anywhere except the three of them” Genesis 4:56
Nice to hear from you again, Hank. I’m very happy to answer your questions as well as I’m able. Let me think about what I think and feel, and I’ll post again here as soon as I can – hopefully in the next couple of days.
Thank you too for all that about Lot. I hadn’t read that before and it was interesting.
Hi Hank – I may reply to you in more than one post if this gets too long and if I run out of time responding to what you asked, but don’t worry – I will reply.
Firstly, I listened to the audio about Armageddon that you recommended above. It was interesting to hear biblical places put in their modern geographical place. Middle East peace? Hmmm, a difficult subject. I don’t think any one side is at fault and I don’t think there’s an easy solution. As for Islam – well, to be honest, I’m no fan of Islam either. I don’t like the way SOME Muslims treat women, and I don’t like the prejudices which exist in that religion as much as any other. The audio talks about the famines and pestilence which are mentioned in Revelations. I know there are a number of interpretations of Revelations so you may disagree with what I write here, but off I go:-
Revelations is a shocking book in its descriptions of such horrors and it was frightening to read as a child. but do I really think these things will come about? Well, obviously I don’t KNOW, but if they do come about – particularly the wars – then I’d consider that to be something brought about by the intolerance of human beings rather than anything demonic or Satanic. An aside – do you believe in demons?
The Rapture – again, I’ve no idea if that will happen, but I’m not ruling it out. However, the vagueness of the timing makes me suspicious. I know that some people have tried to put a date on it and been proved wrong (so some of them just chose a new date!). Do I fear being judged? Yes, of course – wouldn’t anyone? None of us are perfect however hard we try.
I suppose I don’t trust Revelations – it all seems too outrageous (there’s probably a better word than that – I don’t mean it in an insulting way) and unnecessarily complicated and prolonged. The Whore of Babylon, the Beasts, the various nations, false prophets, etc. As for Armageddon – I have no idea. I’ve read many things about what it means, but I take it to mean a final battle in which Good will triumph and Jesus will return in a Second Coming. But why wait? Why can’t Good triumph now? Or why couldn’t it many years ago? And hasn’t Jesus’ Second Coming been predicted before? Does the World have to descend into chaos and terror before Jesus can return? If so, why?
I’d be very interested in your thoughts about Revelations – why it particularly interests you, and what you take it to mean – both in a wide sense and to you as an individual.
(I’m sorry if my answer isn’t very detailed. I’m not sure what specific parts of Revelations you meant, so I’ve just touched briefly on a few things If you asking what bit of Revelations I was first interested in as a child – it was Revelations 10 with the angel and “time no longer”.)
You asked: “I’d also like to know what you think about Jesus? His miracles…His words…His teachings?”
I don’t know if Jesus really existed, but I’m willing to believe he did, and that he was a good man who did all or some of the things reported in the NT. Was he the Son of God? I don’t know. So what I write below presumes that he existed and that his life was as reported. None of it presumes he was the Son of God because I just don’t know that.
When I read the Bible as a child, it was Jesus who I liked to read about (the god of the OT was scary – too unpredictable in striking people down for things I didn’t understand or for which seemed rather random). I saw Jesus as a good, a kind, a principled man, who cared about other people. That, to me, is what I see as christian – gentleness, kindness and caring. I GENUINELY believe that Jesus didn’t/wouldn’t hate gay people or homosexuality itself (I say ‘genuinely’ in case you think I’m only saying that out of self –interest: I’m not). I think he’d consider caring, loving, moral same sex relationships to be equal to caring, loving, moral heterosexual ones.
I think he was compassionate. I like the fact he cared for and healed the sick because that’s something I consider important myself. When he said ‘Love thine enemies’, I kind of half admire that in that I think it’s a good thing to do, but sometimes people might be SO evil that it would be hard to love them, rather than just not to hate them, if that makes sense. That leads into forgiveness. I freely admit that I couldn’t forgive some things, and I don’t think I’m alone in that. Some things are just too awful for any person to forgive, I think – too evil and too inhumane.
I like the section about not judging others because that makes a lot of sense – “”He that is without sin among you, let him cast the first stone.” I don’t like people setting themselves up as judges of morals and sins when they’re not exactly perfect themselves. I also don’t like such people prioritising sins according to their own prejudices, and then pretending it’s ‘god’s word’. The part of me that thinks there might be a God is disgusted on his behalf when people do that. When Jesus intervened and saved the women from being stoned, I was pleased. That seems to me an enlightened, modern thing to do, as well as a compassionate thing. I think Jesus is far easier to understand because he’s more ‘human’.
Again, very brief but not something I could explain in one post. If there are specific things you were hoping I’d cover then please feel free to ask specifically. :)
Do you still look at this site? If so, I’ll start to write you
again…sorry I haven’t done anything since you last wrote –
don’t have a valid excuse, but some laziness, vacation time,
and a few othe busy things are the reason.
Let me know as I’m still interested in exchanging comments.
Hey Iris…do you still read this site?
Oh wow a person with strict christian views and yet, she gets her tits out.
I’m curious as what Christianity Americans seem to follow, because the last time I checked. Jesus commanded us to love god and love each other, not persecute,murder, condemn and judge each other.