I would wager that this is the real reason most people who oppose gay marriage actually oppose it.
Posted in: Morality, Politics.
Tagged: bible · gay marriage · homosexuality · human rights · religion
The bible explicitly states that a MAN shall leave his father and mother and be united to his WIFE and the two shall become one flesh. It was a sin for the kings of Israel to practice polygamy, and in Solomon’s case, it lead to his downfall as a man of God. Also, those who criticize the command for a man to marry the woman he rapes are only looking at part of the scripture. The man is actually required to pay her father 50 shekels and then marry the girl for life if the father consents. This was to preserve the purity of the girl, not to force her into an unwanted relationship.
Perhaps you missed the point of the cartoon. The Bible “explicitly” says many things about marriage. It also says many things about quite a few other issues that are completely ignored today, so cherry-picking your Bible verses to support your view is hardly a credible response.
Pair that with the fact that quoting any religious text as support for your argument is completely invalid in this country from a Constitutional standpoint and you’ve really got no leg on which to stand.
I coul go to multiple scriptures that oppose homosexuality. I wasn’t cherry-picking verses to support my opinion. If you believe that the bible condones homosexuality, please tell me what scripture you find that in.
Also, I wasnt quoting religious text as support for my position. I was addressing attacks the cartoon made against the bible, and clarifying what it actually says.
Please understand that I didn’t come on to your website looking to start an argument. I simply wanted to clarify what the bible actually says about homosexual marriage.
You are correct that the Bible seems to condemn homosexuality in a few places, though it only rarely addresses marriage and, as far as I can remember, doesn’t mention “gay” marriage at all. I didn’t mean to imply that the Bible condones homosexuality. It doesn’t condone lots of stuff (rollerblading and ice cream sundaes, for instance).
I think the point of the cartoon was that the Bible mentions various “varieties” of “marriage” in different verses, so choosing just one or two verses to support your definition (while ignoring any others) is cherry-picking… which doesn’t do much to support a position.
In my original response, I was making (or had tried to make) the point that the Bible can be used to support pretty much any position (on different topics) if you pick and choose which verses you’re going to acknowledge. There are plenty of examples of biblical rules that are no longer followed, lots of them in the Old Testament where people go to get the now (in)famous “abomination” quote about homosexuality. People pull out the “abomination” verse, but conveniently ignore the verses about putting people to death (usually via stoning) for various infractions, not eating shellfish, not wearing mixed fabrics, along with a slew of other rules. Most people don’t use the Bible to support slavery or misogeny (anymore), either, though it’s easily done.
Just choosing to acknowledge a few statements from the Bible, while ignoring the rest, is the epitome of cherry-picking.
That said, I am very appreciative of your tone and didn’t take your original response as wanting to start an argument. I certainly don’t mean to convey that tone myself, either. I’m more than happy to discuss things here or via email!
I’m sorry. In my previous comment I made a few grammatical errors. I was typing quickly and they escaped my notice.
No worries! I try to keep my “grammar Nazi” tendencies in check in comment threads! 🙂
The fact that the bible mentions varieties of marriage doesn’t mean that they’re all being condoned. I understand your point about lack of approval not being the same as condemnation. What I meant was that the bible never approves of homosexuality, but condemns it in many places throughout scripture.
Also, you’re right about the old testament having many regulations that aren’t followed today. (except perhaps by orthodox Jews) The reason why these commands aren’t followed is because as Christians, we’re under a new covenant that’s by grace, not works.
If you think I’m cherry picking to support my beliefs, please point out to me the scriptures I’ve ignored, and I’ll be glad to acknowledge them.
Post Note: I thought it only fair to mention that I don’t think gay people are icky! 🙂
I think that, although the Bible doesn’t explicitly condone certain definitions of marriage, it certainly does not condemn them (many wives, concubines, etc). It does explicitly rule on marrying a rape victim (Deuteronomy 22:28–29). I’ve seen this justified in a number of ways, but it doesn’t change the fact of the verses (and the justifications don’t even remotely excuse the rule).
I’ve also heard (quite often) the “New Covenant” claim, but there is no clear statement in the Bible about what’s out and what’s in with regard to the rule change. There’s actually no explicit statement of “Hey, forget all that old stuff. Now just do this stuff!” Actually, in Matthew 5:17-20, Jesus straight out says that he didn’t come to abolish the old laws or prophets, but to fulfill them. A similar statement is made in Luke 16:17.
The “New Covenant” rationale has just always seemed, to me, like an excuse to get rid of the vile parts of the Old Testament. At the same time, various parts of the Old Testament, such as Leviticus 20:13 (that’s the “abomination” verse) are still held up by some groups as a rationale for their bigotry. That’s where the cherry picking comes in. If someone is going to use Leviticus 20:13 as an argument against gay marriage, then if they don’t want to be called hypocrites, they’d better damn well be stoning adulterers and killing children who talk back to their parents. You can’t say that 20:13 is still valid, but 20:9 and 20:10 are old rules that we can ignore now.
I understand that the way the Bible is written makes it exceptionally easy to interpret it in a multitude of ways, so my interpretation may not mesh with yours and yours may not mesh with another Christian denomination, etc, etc… A common refutation is “you’re taking it out of context” or “it meant something different back then” or sometimes just “that’s not what it means,” but that’s just one of the symptoms of the way it’s written.
Glad to hear you don’t think gay people are icky! Ha! 🙂
First off, you’re correct in that the bible doesn’t condone polygamy, neither does it condemn those who practice it. It does, however, say in 1 Corinthians 7:2 that each man should have his own wife, and each woman her own husband. This is a clear command against polygamy. The mere fact that men of God in the old testament have multiple wives and concubines doesn’t mean God was in favor of it.
I understand your struggle with the command for a woman to marry her rapist. However, you only looked at part of the command. In Deut. 22:25 it says that the punishment for raping an engaged woman was stoning. Also, there was already a command in place in Exodus 22:16-17 that the woman’s father had the final say in whether his daughter was married. You can find a good explanation of these scriptures at http://www.equip.org/bible_answers/how-could-the-bible-command-a-rape-victim-to-marry-her-rapist/
Hebrews tells us that the law is only a shadow of the good things that are to come. When Jesus says he came to fulfill the law, He means that he came not in opposition to it, but to fulfill it’s requirements once for all men. Romans 10:4, Galatians 3:23-25, and Ephesians 2:15 all clearly state that we’re no longer under the old law after Christ. Therefore, those old testament commandments can be considered fulfilled and no longer nescessary. The ones that are still binding to us today, are repeated in the New Testament. Romans 1:26-27 and 1 Corinthians 6:9-11 are two examples of homosexuality being forbidden by New Testament teachers.
I appreciate your willingness to discuss these questions with me, and I hope that my response has helped you in your understanding of Christian beliefs.
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Evolutionary biology is genuinely scientific, but more than that it opens the door to a world more marvellous than any Christian fundamentalist has ever read into the pages of the Bible.
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