Friday, October 1, 2010

The Homosexual Agenda

Then the devil took him to Jerusalem, and placed him on the pinnacle of the temple, saying to him, “If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down from here, for it is written, ‘He will command his angels concerning you, to protect you,’ and ‘On their hands they will bear you up, so that you will not dash your foot against a stone.’” Jesus answered him, “It is said, ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test.’” When the devil had finished every test, he departed from him until an opportune time.
Luke 4:9-13

When Tyler Clementi jumped from the George Washington Bridge there were no angels to bear him up.

Tyler was described as a shy young man, a good student and a gifted violinist. He committed suicide after his roommate and another student posted video online of Tyler with another young man in their dorm room.

For years, those who oppose equal rights for gays and lesbians have said that they have nothing against the Tyler Clementi's of the world, what they are against is “The Homosexual Agenda.” This tragic event brings that debate into sharp relief.

The “Homosexual Agenda” is precisely this: to create a society in which young men and women do not jump off of bridges in a desperate attempt to escape who they are, because society has told them in a thousand different ways that who they are is not acceptable.

We who are Christians must bear a special responsibility in this effort.

The temptation story is the source of Shakespeare’s famous observation that “Even the devil can cite scripture for his own purpose.” Sadly, too many of us have been Satan’s enablers with our selective quoting of scripture.

There are six passages in the Bible that are often understood to condemn homosexuality. The way that some people refer to them, you would think that there were six hundred. By contrast, there are thousands of passages about how we should treat those who are oppressed, downtrodden, outcast, or otherwise despised. When Jesus calls something an abomination, he is talking about the worship of wealth, not about sexuality.

Those who oppose equal rights for gays and lesbians are often sincere. They are often good people in so many ways. Most of them genuinely do not wish that any harm should come to gay and lesbian (and bisexual and transgender) people. They would never harm anyone. But they are enabling the bullying and the harassing. They are contributing to a climate in which such behavior is acceptable.

Fifty years ago, when the country was debating Civil Rights for African Americans, opponents told us first that they had no ill feelings toward individual Blacks (“some of my best friends . . .”), and second that we can’t legislate love or acceptance. They were wrong. The legislation changed our behavior, and our changed behavior eventually changed our hearts. Laws don’t just change what people can and cannot do, they change how we think and feel. What once seemed strange becomes normal.

Christians need to be God’s angels.

We cannot fly in between the bridge and the water. But we can be the angels who intervene along the way by working for a society in which everyone belongs.

1 comment:

  1. Rev Trench,
    what a joy to stumble upon your blog here. This is an issue that too few many christians think about from inside their holy huddles whilst real people are suffering. By Christs example we need to be putting our ministries outside of the Church walls and see the real issues at stake here which you have stated really effectively. Thank you.


    p.s. I have set up a blog with similar aspirations to yours although I doubt mine is quote so elloquent. Feel free to pop over, digest, agree, tear apart.