Homosexuality and Divorce

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I don't know how I missed this one. Well, I do know. I saw the title and thought it was the post I'd already read that had a similar title but was just the first in the two-part series. Anyway, Jollyblogger follows up his post on Sodom and homosexuality with a post on divorce. His original point is that Christians have pretended homosexuality is a sin all of its own caliber to the point of ignoring other sins, even when it comes to discussing the sin of Sodom, which Ezekiel points to as a whole list of things without even mentioning homosexuality. He focuses more on their arrogance and how the treated the poor. You don't hear about those as much from evangelicals in the news as you do from most evangelical preachers from the pulpit, but you don't hear about them enough even there. In this post Jollyblogger cautions against some of the statements made about God's judgment on America and Western culture for the sin of homosexuality because the same sort of argument would have meant God's judgment on the church long before homosexuality was even a major issue. Why? Divorce.

You should read the whole post, but here are some of the highlights to whet your appetite (and to give you reason to see why it's worth reading; there's much in there that I won't excerpt or discuss, including a good conversation in the comments):

Our acceptance of homosexuality is said to be destroying the institution of marriage, and the destruction of our society is sure to follow. I suggest that the institution of marriage has been nearly destroyed by our acceptance of divorce. So, though I don't like all of the judgment rhetoric, if we presuppose that the destruction of the institution of marriage is grounds for judgment, then we need to look beyond homosexuality as the culprit.

...if we were to do justice to the text of Romans 1, then we would need to see that things like gossip, envy, greed, boasting and disobedience to parents were included in the list of the worst of the worst. I can't remember hearing a sermon to the effect that God was going to destroy this once great nation due to our acceptance of gossip, yet gossip is in the same list of sins as homosexuality. Yet there's a whole lot more gossip and disobeying of parents going on in the church than there is homosex[sic].

...[Malachi 2:13-15] indicates that when the people of God accept divorce God turns His back on them. The analogy is obvious - our nation has accepted the practice of divorce and it did so long before the present discussion of homosexuality came on the scene. If Malachi 2:13-15 has any applicability to our nation then those who think God is going to turn His back on us because of our failure to protect the family need to realize that, by this logic, God probably turned His back long before this homosexual moment....

If evangelicals are concerned about impending judgment from God we need to take the whole of the Scripture into account. There aren't that many practicing homosexuals in our evangelical churches, but if George Barna is correct, our churches are nearly half-full of folks who have been divorced. If evangelicals are serious about protecting the institution of marriage they need to focus the same amount of energy (or greater) on fighting divorce as they do fighting homosexuality.

I have two relatively minor complaints given the amount of agreement we share. First, he puts "or greater" in parentheses. It seems obvious to me that the amount of energy devoted to this should be much greater than the amount of energy dealing with homosexuality. Also, I would say that 'fighting' even seems the wrong word, since the only two things we could and should do are to reduce the aspects of the causal factors for homosexuality that are social and to call Christians who are gay to live holy lives in whatever way that might be possible for the individual in question. For some it might be overcoming the homosexuality that they find themselves saddled with, and for some it might just be living a celibate life. I can't see how any other response to homosexuality is anything but immoral for Christians, and those two things don't seem to me to be what most people think when they hear someone speak of fighting homosexuality.

1 Comments

Well, I do not know anything that is considered gravier than the act of killing. Yet, thousands of Human History can be summarised by few words like murder, war and massacre. Humanity has not vanished on account of such things that are in principle sinful for every ethic religion.

To kill an entire Nation slowly by letting a huge cloud starve is by far much more serious than allowing divorce or tolerating homosexuality. Yet, the World has not been destroyed because wealthy Nations let it happen in poor Nations.

I think divorce is something very different from homosexuality. And divorce is not itself an evil, it is the consequence of many evils. It is not a good solution to end the agony of a bad marriage, specially when the couple have children. It is a faulty remedy. But none can say that if a divorce happens it is ok, because if everything was ok the divorce would not have taken place.

The point is though that there is a whole social issue going on: the slow but sure process of dehumanisation of the individuals. Every day we see new and absurd proposals to make people more selfish, insensible, insensitive and cruel. More and more parents have children and do not care about them.

I do not expect People not to divorce. For People not to divorce they would have to make no errors when they get married, and that is impossible. But I do expect People to love one another, because this is part of our human condition. If People are educated to be responsible, reasonable and above all to practice true love, the number of divorces will tend to fall.

But about the tolerance of divorcees, gays and prostitutes within religious groups that hold the characteristic behaviour of such persons as inherently immoral, we all �Christians or non-Christians, theists or atheists� should remind the great moral teaching, which now is already part of human ethics and not only Christianism, the golden rule:
Let him who is without sin among you be the first to throw a stone at her.

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