(Home-My Story).......                 True, Tragic and Unnecessary Gay Youth Suicide Stories......................         (Espańol) 

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PART 2 - Page 11 of 34
Reasons for Continued Negativity Towards Homosexuals
Gay Sex is Morally Wrong Because It Makes Straights Very Uncomfortable?
Can The Bible Be Wrong? Is Slavery Justified In The Bible?
Over 5,900 Gay Friendly Christian Churches in the USA

The first reason is called "The Tyranny of The Majority"*and can best be understood by remembering two things: Number one is that prejudices throughout history have been created by the majority imposing its will over a minority.  For centuries sexual attitudes, sexual taboos, and sexual practices have been used by dominant groups in society to keep others subordinate.  Those who possess power define those who are powerless and then impose their own definition on the ones defined.  The guiding principle is to ensure the comfort, the convenience, the happiness, and the well-being of the dominant ones. (1) And secondly, history constantly reminds us that majority opinions are nor necessarily true. Let’s talk about left-handedness as one example:

Until the 1930s in the twentieth century, left-handedness was considered "abnormal", even sinister (from the Latin sinister, "on the left side"), with left-handed children being forced - often at considerable psychological cost - to use their "right [or correct]" hand.  (2) For example elementary school teachers throughout the USA and Europe would demand that their students only use their right hand for writing and would often punish children for using their left hand, typically by slapping it with a ruler or even tying it behind their back. An example of such treatment involves 2 famous baseball players in the USA during the 1920’s, Lou Gehrig and Babe Ruth, who both hit and threw left-handed but wrote right-handed after enduring left-handed suppression during their formative years.   Left-handedness was often interpreted as a sign of Satanic influence, and thus prohibited by many societies. (Click Here to read more.) There are examples in ancient Christian texts and drawings in which the wicked or evil sit at the left hand of God, while the righteous sit at the right hand of God during the Last Judgment. Now we think of such prejudice as almost funny, but members of what many say is the “last prejudice standing”, homosexuals and bisexuals, are not laughing. They know that their homosexuality is just like left-handedness, something that they have no control of, something that was just a given. It is a normal, if minority variation of human nature, all within God's original blessing, morally neutral. (3)  So what is wrong is homophobia and religiously based prejudice against people who have nothing wrong with them. God doesn’t make junk.

*In Pew Research polling in 2001, Americans opposed same-sex marriage by a 57% to 35% margin. Since then, support for same-sex marriage has steadily grown. Based on polling in 2015, a majority of Americans (55%) support same-sex marriage, compared with 39% who oppose it. See the latest data on same-sex marriage. But there are many communities especially in mid America and in the South in which the conservative, traditionalist point of view of gays and gay marriage is dominant so the lgbt community will still feel like they are in the minority.

In what constitutes the second reason for the continual negativity toward homosexuals is the idea that “if your ox isn’t getting gored” you don’t have to worry about the problem or you can just ignore it and hope that it will go away. After all, why should anyone get themselves involved in such a controversial subject like homosexuality unless they absolutely have to? The fear is that people will start to think that you are “a homo”. The often heard expression is “I don’t want to talk about it” when the subject comes up. In other words 90% (or a large majority) of the people don’t do any real investigation for the truth regarding homosexuality because they aren’t personally affected (assuming that the widely help belief that only around 10% or less of the population is homosexual or bisexual. (4) So basically it seems that the main types of heterosexuals that understand, like or love homosexuals are the people who liked or loved homosexuals before they knew they were homosexuals and realize that they are the same people after they found out as they were before. These are the loving parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, brothers, sisters and other relatives, good friends and even their own children, who care enough about these people to get themselves informed and not only find out the truth but are open minded enough to lovingly accept all the hard to understand complexities.

The third reason is that people tend to be afraid of what they don’t understand. Just because you feel really uncomfortable when you see 2 same sex teenagers or adults, either kissing or holding hands in a romantic way doesn’t mean that it’s wrong and that it is a sin. Homosexuals should be able to show affection in public to the same degree that heterosexual couples are allowed to. It is because society looks down on gays and lesbians showing their love for each other in public that they wind up in gay bars and bath houses to meet one another, because there are so few other places to go. I plead guilty to this uncomfortable feeling in this situation but I’m working on it and am determined to get over it. It’s just that we’ve all been brainwashed. But really, our prior repressive social, cultural and religious conditioning shouldn’t stop us from being open to and doing the right thing.

Also, most heterosexuals think “
Yuck!” and “That is so disgusting!” when they think of homosexual sex. First of all, you shouldn’t be thinking about it. Since it’s none of your business, you just need to move on and start thinking about something you actually know something about! And secondly, I’m very sorry, but that is an extremely poor reason to put a whole class of people in the very real garbage. It is because of men and women’s limited knowledge and understanding that Jesus told us not to judge. This point is huge so I will repeat it - It is because of our limited understanding of this world and our fellow human beings and their complexities that Christ implored us not to judge each other. Only God is qualified to judge us since he made us and anyway, historically, we have never been very good at it. Remember that the "good" religious people of France had Joan of Arc burned at the stake during the Middle Ages. 

2014 Study Finds Straight People - And Even Many Gays - Are Still Alarmingly Uncomfortable With Same-Sex Public Displays of Affection    

Gay Sex is Morally Wrong Because It Makes Straights Very Uncomfortable???  

John B. Cobb Jr. Phd., writes in short essay entitled "Being Christian about Homosexuality", . . . . . . The real ground for moral condemnation today [of physical expression of same-sex love], as in much of the Christian past, is the sense that they are unnatural and hence against God's intentions. The strength of this sense comes from the revulsion felt by many heterosexuals at the thought of physical intimacy with members of their own gender. This personal revulsion causes revulsion also at the thought of others engaged in such activity. 

Instead of wanting to reduce this revulsion, those who feel it typically desire that it remain strong and be widely shared.  They fear that if it declines, some who are now inhibited by it, even their own children might experiment with same-sex relations.  Hence there is a strong desire to maintain the moral prohibitions and to prevent those who violate it from functioning as role models for youth. 

Those of us who are on the other side need to recognize the power of this involuntary revulsion in many just as we recognize the power of involuntary same-sex attraction in others.  In seeking to avoid condemnation of the latter we should not condemn the former.  But we cannot remain neutral with regard to what is to be done.

Whereas some consider it moral to act on their involuntary revulsion by condemning what revolts them, we believe that such condemnation is wrong.  No one is to be blamed for feeling revulsion, but the decision to act on that revulsion in a way that injures others falls under moral criticism.  The question  is whether, in fact, homosexual acts are inherently immoral.  We do not see any reason to suppose that this is so. 

Instead of putting matters in purely moral terms, the Christian church should ask a different question.  What does the church recommend as a lifestyle to those whose sexual attractions are for member of their own sex?  How is such a question to be answered?

The church should have in mind the total well-being of the person in question.  It should also have in mind the well-being of actual or possible sexual partners.  And it should be concerned for the larger social effects as well.

Consider the options.  [Option One] The church can recommend that natural feelings be denied and that the  gay or lesbian person find a partner of the other gender.  Presumably the church would encourage complete honesty, so that the partner would understand the limitations of the relations that can be expected. 

In much of human history, marriage has been understood as a social relation having more to do with property and procreation than with the personal or sexual fulfillment of the partners.  In that context this advice to gay and lesbian persons made sense.  The question then arose as to whether it was permissible to seek in other ways the sexual satisfactions lacking in marriage or whether these hungers must be permanently repressed.

Although this arrangement is not impossible today, most Christians draw back from recommending it.  Our understanding of the purposes of marriage is violated by it.  And although there may be instances in which heterosexual marriage remains the best solution for one who is homosexually oriented, few of us would recommend it as the normative pattern for all.   [To read about what usually happens when gay men marry straight women, click Here

This leads to the second option.  The church can urge gay and lesbian persons to abstain from sexual activity throughout their lives.  It would be foolish to suppose that large numbers would fully follow this teaching.  But the church can create a climate that generates considerable feelings of guilt when this ideal is violated.  [The doctrine of the Roman Catholic Church comes to mind here]. Such guilt feeling does not always reduce sexual activity, but in some people it does.

If the church's goal is to reduce homosexual activity as much as possible, then this may be the correct teaching.  But heterosexual Christians must ask why they demand so much suffering from those with a different sexual orientation.  If they believe that sexual activity is something inherently bad, so that it is justified only in its connection with procreation, they will have reason to continue this teaching. But this is now a rare view.  Most of those who urge abstinence on gays and lesbians regard sexual fulfillment as inherently positive in the case of heterosexuals.  It is only their view that same-sex love is against nature that leads to its condemnation.  

The practical consequences of both of the teachings noted [above] is to encourage homosexual promiscuity.  Church members can engage in many short-term liaisons without raising questions about their standing in the church.  We tend not to pry into one another's private lives.  But if a man brings another man to church with him regularly, if they give the same address and show signs of mutual affection, then there is likely to be a scandal.  The dominant effect of church teaching is to encourage secret, temporary liaisons without commitment and to discourage long-term fidelity.  

The third recommendation that the church can offer is that gay and lesbian persons look forward to finding partners of the same gender with whom to share their lives through thick and thin.  In short, the same ideal that the church holds for heterosexual persons can apply to them. The implication is that the church should celebrate and support committed same-sex unions in the same way as heterosexual ones.

. . . . [Remember that] our goal is human flourishing, holistic personal fulfillment for all.  If, as most of us believe, this occurs best in the context of committed relationships that include sexual love, then we should teach this ideal without apology and without excluding a whole class of persons from it.  Heterosexual and homosexual Christians can then work together to bring some healthy order out of the sexual chaos of our time.
. . . . . . . . .
The above selection out of an essay entitled  "Being Christian about Homosexuality" by John B. Cobb Jr., Ph.D, was part of the book edited by Walter Wink, "Homosexuality and Christian Faith - Questions of Conscience for the Churches", Minneapolis, Fortress Press, 1999.  John B. Cobb, Jr., Ph.D., has held many positions including Ingraham Professor of Theology at the Claremont School of Theology, Avery Professor at the Claremont Graduate School, Fulbright Professor at the University of Mainz, Visiting Professor at Vanderbilt, Harvard, and Chicago Divinity Schools. His writings include: Christ in a Pluralistic Age; God and the World; and co-author with Herman Daly of For the Common Good which was co-winner of the Grawemeyer Award for Ideas Improving World Order.       

The fourth reason is that certain insecure folks just need to feel superior to other people to feel good about themselves. For some people to acquire self-respect, though false and artificial, they seem to have a need to gain ascendance over other people and to put them down through hurtful words and harmful actions. Maybe people with little self-esteem and a huge inferiority complex fall in this category. This may not be a scientific observation but at the very least it is a very personal observation on my part after living more than 75 years on this earth.

"What I care about is the need so many of us have to shun and loathe others. The need so many of us have to feel better or superior to others. The need some of us have to declare ourselves right and “perfect” all the freaking time and any chance we have.

And for some of us, these are very real needs.

But I will tell you this. All it really is… All any of it really is… is bullying.

Sneaky, hurtful, duplicitous, bullying."  To read the entire enlightening and beautifully written article "I'm Christian unless You're Gay" by Dan Pearce, from which the previous quote was taken Click Here.

And the fifth reason is that throughout history, people have understood Holy Scripture through the lens of the morals and beliefs of the society in which they lived. In other words, this happens when a religious group consents to and supports the cultural traditions that are commonly accepted within a particular society and looks for and “supposedly finds” Bible verses that support the practice.

One example are the beliefs and religious practices towards the issue of slavery of Negroes by "Christians" in the Southern USA before the Civil War (1861 - 1865) and bigotry and racial prejudice toward Blacks (Negroes) right up to the present (though reduced to a large extent since the 1970’s, finally) by these same Southern United States Christians - a time span of over 200 years. They vigorously defended the practice of slavery and racial bigotry based on Genesis 9:20-25 (The Curse on Canaan, son of Ham), Ephesians 6:5 (“Slaves, obey your earthly masters with deep respect and fear”) and all the other scriptures that accommodate the practice. But now times have changed and most of the Christian world now believes that slavery and racial prejudice are wrong based on sound Biblical truths (Acts 10:34-35).

Can The Bible Be Wrong?  Is Slavery Justified In The Bible?

In his essay entitled Homosexuality and the Bible in his book "Homosexuality and Christian Faith, Walter Wink writes:

Where the Bible mentions homosexual behavior at all, it clearly condemns it.  I freely grant that.  The issue is precisely whether that biblical judgment is correct.  The Bible sanctioned slavery as well and nowhere attacked it as  unjust.  Are we prepared to argue today that slavery is biblically justified?  One hundred and fifty years ago, when the debate over slavery was raging, the Bible seemed to be clearly on the slaveholders' side.  Abolitionists were hard-pressed to justify their opposition to slavery on biblical grounds. Yet today, if you were to ask Christians in the South whether the Bible sanctions slavery, virtually everyone would agree that it does not.  In the same way, fifty years from now people will look back in wonder that the church could be so obtuse and so resistant to the new thing the Holy Spirit was doing among us regarding homosexuality.  [But also note that the Bible is obviously just talking about the physical sex or behavior, not modern day loving same-sex monogamous relationships as is mentioned throughout this site. Gary Lynn]    

Now turning to the current topic of discussion-homosexuality: With so much of American and Mexican society opposed to “what they understand to be homosexuality (the perverse and condescending idea that lust can be the only sexual feeling homosexuals have)”, is it really hard to comprehend that so few of the Christian churches in these 2 countries (and most other countries and religions in the world as well) provide a safe haven and welcoming atmosphere for members of the gay community? Yes, the beliefs of these churches (synagogues and mosques) just conveniently match those of the society in which they find themselves.

But times are changing:
Rapid Growth of Gay Friendly Christian Churches
Thankfully that is beginning to change in the United States with the growth of the following gay friendly Christian Churches:
        The Metropolitan Community Churches (MCC),
        The United Churches of Christ (UCC),
        The Episcopal Church, (Integrity USA) (From Wikipedia),
        The Roman Catholic Church (Dignity USA)
        The Reconciling United Methodist (RMN) congregations,
        The More Light Presbyterian (MLP) congregations,
        The Association of Welcoming & Affirming Baptists (AWAB) congregations,
        The Reconciling in Christ Lutherans Concerned (RIC/ELCA) congregations,
        The Open and Affirming [O&A/GLAD] Congregations of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) etc., all congregations (or individuals or groups within anti-gay congregations) who warmly welcome the gay and lesbian worshiper. 

By the end of 2009 there were 5,916 Gay Friendly Congregations in the United States alone, an increase of 615 churches from the previous year.  (5) Below are 3 Charts which show the rapid growth from 1990 to 2009, 2009 growth rate by denomination and make up of the affirming Christian congregations as of December 31, 2009 in the United States which take a pro-gay stance.  For a more thorough analysis of the three charts below please go to the below website link from which these charts and the above information were taken: 
http://www.gaychurch.org/The_Word/Welcoming_Church_Report/2009_affirming_church_survey.htm (Used with permission)

is a web site dedicated to ministering to the gay Christian community and to the friends of our community.

Chart A - Rate of Growth of Gay-Friendly Christian Churches from 1990 through 2009

(5)
 

Chart B - Gay Friendly Christian Denominations Listed by Largest Percentage of Growth in 2009

Total Number of Affirming Churches

 

% increase from 2008

 

 

 

Denomination

 

991

15%

United Church of Christ

921

12%

Episcopal

765

15%

Presbyterian

690

3%

Lutheran

634

11%

United Methodist Church

333

6%

Non-denominational (Charismatic)

281

-1%

Roman Catholic

237

n/a

Other (a)

229

n/a

Catholic (other) (b)

223

0%

MCC

154

3%

Anglican

121

2%

Baptist

120

2%

Disciples of Christ

110

2%

United Church of Canada

107

0%

Quaker

 

Chart C - Denominational Make-up Percentages as of December 31, 2009 in the Affirming Christian Church Survey

(5)

Notes of interest:
(a) Includes all other, non Catholic denominations (e.g. Mennonite, Community of Christ, Alliance of Christian Churches, Brethren).
(b) Includes all Catholic denominations that are not associated with the Roman Catholic church (e.g. Independent Catholic, American Catholic). (5)

The 3,000 plus member Cathedral of Hope in Dallas, Texas (United Church of Christ) is known as the “world’s largest gay church”.  Click here to link to a website which lists gay friendly churches throughout the world. 

All this reminds me of what Jesus said in Matthew 7:13-14 - (New Living Translation) “You can enter God’s Kingdom only through the narrow gate. The highway to hell is broad, and its gate is wide for the many who choose the easy way. But the gateway to life is small, and the road is narrow, and only a few ever find it.” Is “the easy way”, just to do and believe what everybody else around you believes, especially about a particularly controversial issue such as homosexuality, and not put yourself at risk by being different? After all, what would the neighbors say?

Click Here for a listing of all the gay-friendly branches of the world's religions: Roman Catholicism, Eastern and Orthodox Catholicism, Protestantism, Judaism, Muslimism, Buddhism, Christian Scientism, Paganism, etc.

In “The Problems with Bible Translations on Page 5”, when I wrote that the educated guesses of Bible translators most likely include prejudices taken from the society in which these translators lived, I was referring specifically to this idea that throughout history, people have understood Holy Scripture through the lens of the morals and beliefs of the community in which they lived. The influence of the common assumptions and strong beliefs of one’s peers, people whose approval means so much to the translator or anybody else for that matter, is very powerful. An example that Bishop John Shelby Spong gives in his book, Living in Sin-A Bishop Rethinks Human Sexuality, on page 143 is, "There are . . . references to homosexuality in the Hebrew scriptures where the English translation is simply in error and reflects the prejudice of the translator.   A case in point is in Deuteronomy 23:17, which the King James Bible renders. "There shall be no whore of the daughters of Israel, nor a sodomite of the sons of Israel."  [Click Here to go to the text] The Hebrew word translated "whore" is qedeshah, and the Hebrew word rendered "sodomite" is the masculine form of the same of the same word, or qadesh. These words mean simply a holy woman or a holy man and referred not to whoredom or homosexuality but to the cult of male and female temple prostitutes.  The Revised Standard Version of the Bible renders this word as "cult prostitute" (for both genders), here and in several other places. [Click Here to go to the text] But those who are certain that the King James Bible is the only true version of God's word find their prejudice against homosexual persons affirmed by this blatant mistranslation." 

Click Here for: The NALT (Not All Like That) Christians Project: The purpose of The NALT Christians Project is to give any and all LGBT-affirming Christians a means of sharing their belief that there is nothing anti-biblical or sinful about being gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender. How does it work? You make a YouTube video saying that you are both Christian and fully affirming of LGBT-people; you upload your video onto your (free and easily obtainable) YouTube channel; via the Submit form on the NALT Christians website you inform the NALT gang that your video is ready to go; soon thereafter your video is added to the chorus of other videos on the NALT Christians website that are helping to change the world.

 

Why should I make a NALT Christians video?
1.To refute the widespread belief that Christianity is synonymous with anti-gay bigotry.*
2.To counteract the destructive effects on all young people of the message that God condemns and rejects LGBT people.
3.To support and encourage other LGBT-affirming Christians. (October 2013)
 

The sixth and last reason (that I can think of) is the nearsighted or myopic view of life. This is where knowingly or unknowingly one limits his or her understanding of the world, kind of like using blinders which creates a restrictive tunnel vision. The reasoning goes like this: Well I’ve never known or heard of any happy, well adjusted monogamous homosexual couples (either gay [male] or lesbian [female]), therefore they do not exist. (6) This person says that it is all a myth promoted in the “immoral gay agenda” meant to destroy “traditional Christian family values”. The only homosexuals that this person has ever heard of are the ones he or she sees on the TV news programs that are wildly dressed and bizarre acting that participate in the gay pride parades, the ones who go to gay bars and bath houses to participate in casual gay sex or the millions of gay men who have received “the judgment of God”, the ones who have died from AIDS. And besides, this person says, for about 2,000 years my church has taught that homosexuality is a sin and now you are coming along and saying that my church has been wrong all this time! How dare you!

The isolation between the gay and straight communities
I believe that this last reason exists because there is very little regular human interchange between the gay and straight communities. This is the main reason that straight Christians (and non-Christians) are able to continue to believe these myths and misconceptions about homosexuals. Straights that have relationships on a regular basis with the normal everyday gay community know that homosexuals are no different than they (straights) are with only one exception - who they love and are attracted to.

This isolation from one another is very hurtful for both sides. Straights who have relatives, friends at work/school or neighbors who are homosexuals are much more likely to just accept them as no big deal. We have the same strengths and weaknesses that everybody else has. Just as 40% of the straight marriages end up in divorce in the United States, so you see a similar percentage of failure in gay relationships, unions or marriages.

Click Here for What Parents of Gay and Lesbian Teens need to Know about Suicide - What Are The Warning Signs?

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Footnotes:
(1) Spong, John Shelby, [Episcopal Bishop of Newark, NJ, USA] Living in Sin?: A Bishop Rethinks Human Sexuality, San Francisco: Harper San Francisco, 1988, page 23.
(2) Holben, L. R.  What Christians Think about Homosexuality - Six Representative Viewpoints, North Richland Hills, Texas, BIBAL Press, 1999, 1999, page 284, Footnote 76.
(3) Ibid, page 176, Question 5. 
(4) The number of people identifying as homosexual — and the proportion having homosexual experiences — are quantities which have been difficult for researchers to estimate reliably. Many recent studies indicate a prevalence of 2% to 13% of the population. Click Here to see the quote and the references listed in Wikipedia.
(5) The three charts were taken from http://www.gaychurch.org/The_Word/Welcoming_Church_Report/2009_affirming_church_survey.htm and permission was granted to use these on this site. 
(6) In a 1992 study, 55.5% of gay men and 71.2% of lesbians were reported to be in steady relationships in the United States. Click on the following link and scroll down on this page of statistics and look under the heading of Family/Relationships (http://www.pflagupstatesc.org/statistics.htm)
 


A Gay Teen Short Story ♂♂
GOD MADE ME THIS WAY by Grant Bentley

Church is so confusing for Zack.  His new pastor preaches nothing but hate and condemnation of gays and lesbians, but no matter how carefully he reads his Bible, he can’t find where it says God hates him.  Will things change when Zach's boyfriend Billy suggests that they all go to his church instead?    Click Here or on the icon to read the story.

 


Click for Page 12 - Homosexuals Are Usually Invisible and Pretending


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Click below to go to:
The Anti-Gay Religious Right's Really Cruel and Idiotic Argument
Their Message to a Gay Person is: Be alone. Live alone. Die alone.

 


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