The ‘Gay’ Exception and the Gospel Misunderstood

jeremyhooper-advocate.jpgJeremy Hooper, left, as featured three year ago in the homosexual magazine The Advocate. Click on photo to enlarge.

By Peter LaBarbera

Leave it to Jeremy Hooper, the indefatigable, youthful Homosexuality Apologist over at the “Good as You” blog, to misconstrue our Easter presentation of the Gospel, “Was Jesus Powerless?” Hooper, who comments on AFTAH’s website and those of other conservative groups with amazing alacrity, is irritated by my comparison of practicing homosexual sinners with other sinners covered by God’s grace.

Pegging off my non-comprehensive list of people who offend God but find forgiveness and hope in Jesus Christ, Hooper writes (bold and “shouting” (caps) emphasis is his):

So let’s see here — we homosexuals are compared to those (of any orientation or gender) who abuse substances, make wagers, objectify women, talk [sh*t] about others, force sex upon someone against their will, take a life, sell their bodies, sell other people’s bodies, patronize those who sell their bodies, take on a job in which they are motivated by profit, run for and carry out office in an unethical way, base their worldview in a mindset that’s detached from religious rule, don’t feel themselves bound by conventional wisdom, utilize their freedom to terminate a pregnancy (either through their medical practice or personal body decisions), have faith in science rather than God, are egocentric assholes, spread untruths, and/or cheat on their committed partners. Weird, because all this time we’ve viewed our always-present biological desires more like, say — THE ALWAYS-PRESENT BIOLOGICAL DESIRES OF OUR HETEROSEXUAL FRIENDS!

Who knew that when we were taught proper comparison techniques way back when, the idea of noting similarity between two or more things came with the caveat: “EXCEPT WHEN DEALING WITH SEXUAL ATTRACTION”? Clearly our kindergarten teacher was nothing more than an atheistic libertine!

What Jeremy doesn’t understand is that just because he feels that his homosexuality is some innate “orientation” — a natural, innocuous desire — that does not make it true. The Bible — regarded by Christ-followers throughout the centuries as the divinely-inspired Word of God — takes a view that is polar opposite to that of today’s homosexual advocates. Let’s return to that “obscure” New Testament book, Romans, for some guidance:

Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. They exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen.

Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural relations for unnatural ones. In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed indecent acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their perversion. (Romans 1:24-27)

“Clobber Verses”?

This is just one of the so-called (“anti-gay”) “Clobber Verses” loathed and ridiculed by homosexual activists because they, well, clobber their sin. Many committed homosexuals come to resent or even despise Christianity because it so clearly condemns their favorite sin. Others seek to redefine the faith to get around those offensive passages, but you would have to apply Bill-Clinton-esque semantics (on steroids) to come away with an interpretation of the Bible that does not proscribe homosexual practice. (See Professor Rob Gagnon for more Biblical scholarship on this point.)

There is no singling out the poor homosexuals here: advocates of special treatment for other sins would have to undergo the same semantic gymnastics to gain approval for their errant behavior(s) and attitude(s) of choice. (Strange how you never hear people complain about the “clobber verses” against adulterers? That’s because, despite the abundance of philandering in our decaying culture, there is no hugely-funded, organized National Adultery Task Force to defend that sin.)

The Bible is an equal opportunity offender, and Jesus only tightened the standards of holiness (e.g., Matthew 5:27-29), while also making God’s grace much more accessible to everyday people — that is, sinners like you and me. The older I get, the more I realize that I simply cannot be “good,” in a godly, Biblical sense, without Christ. He is my goodness. I’m pretty rotten inside without Him. That’s not false humility but a cold (hearted) reality.

Anyway, if you believe the Bible, God does not give homosexual-practicing sinners a pass because homosexuality is an “always-present biological desire” (a thesis which is not supported by facts or science, although you’d never know it by the frequent assertions to the contrary by Jeremy and fellow homosexual activists). In fact, one thing we humans have in common is that each of us struggles with something that truly is “always present” in our lives — sin.

No, Jeremy, you weren’t “born gay,” but you were born a sinner. Join the club. It’s got billions of members.

If you don’t believe in the “natural” depravity of mankind, try watching young children at a playground, or siblings at home: nobody taught them to be selfish, envious, greedy, disobedient, etc. That’s just how they are — why, I wonder, if people are naturally “good” as so many believe these days?

So my answer to you, Jeremy, is that the vices against which I struggle — envy, pride, lust, greed, selfishness, lack of love and grace, and more — seem to have been “always present” in my life — at least that’s something I realized when I came to Christ after college and saw myself as I really was. Could it be that the deceitful heart that the Old Testament prophet Jeremiah mentions (Jeremiah 17:9) describes your heart and that you could be wrong — and God could be right — concerning what you believe to be your natural “orientation”? (By the way, in a future essay we must address how the Christian Church, like everyone else, spends way, way too much time and effort discussing, debating and pondering the “cause” of homosexuality — further proof that many erroneously regard this as a “special sin” that is not really a sin.)

‘Gay’ Fundamentalism

Perhaps it was destined to be that much of the debate over homosexuality in our culture would come down to a religious or philosophical discussion. Savvy homosexual activists well understand the power of religion in American life and increasingly frame their arguments using morality language borrowed from the Church.

We have our absolutes, Biblically grounded, and the “Gay Fundamentalists” have theirs. I use that term because honest homosexuality advocates (“gay” and straight) will admit that they have their own set of non-negotiables — “articles of faith,” as it were. Perhaps their paramount tenet (fundamental) is that homosexuals have no “choice” over their “sexual orientation” — therefore there is nothing to be guilty about! (To be fair, some homosexual activists reject the “born gay” artifice and/or admit that they chose to embrace homosexuality.)

Rationalization takes two main forms on the “gay” side: Religious Homosexual Fundamentalists create a “gay-positive” “christianity” — preposterous as that is, historically speaking — while Secular Gay Fundamentalists reject Christianity and assert a new metaphysical reality based on their homosexual “condition.” Both camps say their new doctrines are superior to and more up-to-date than historic Christian teachings on sex and marriage.

Despite all this, we committed Christians, we traditionalists, offer our most politically incorrect solution to mankind’s predicament: that people need Jesus Christ, that He changes people (2 Corinthians 5:17), and that if we reject Him — and His “free gift” of salvation (Ephesians 2:7-9) — we will one day receive a harsh eternal judgment (hell) (2 Thesselonians 1:6-10). The answer for each of us — homosexual, straight and in between — is found in the atoning sacrifice of the God-man, Jesus Christ, the “one mediator between God and man” (1 Timothy 2:5-6) — who C.S. Lewis described as either a liar, a lunatic, or the Son of God.

That’s all I meant to suggest with my list of sinners: not another condemnation of homosexuals but a picture of mankind’s universal, egalitarian need for Christ, Who endured the Cross of Good Friday to rise again on Resurrection Sunday, so that we, too, could live forever with Him.

P.S. For those who are Christians, please remember to pray for this young man, Jeremy Hooper; see: www.goodasyou.org/good_as_you/2008/03/apples-vs-orang.html.

This article was posted on Tuesday, March 25th, 2008 at 1:49 pm and is filed under A - What does the Bible say about homosexuality?, AFT In the Blogs, Christian, D - GLBTQ Pressure Within Churches, E - Praying for the Lost, News, Pro-Homosexual Media, Task Force, The Bible, Churches, & Homosexuality. You can follow any updates to this article through the RSS 2.0 feed.

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