Archive for December, 2010

Polyamory: Poly leads to society’s destruction

Tuesday, December 21st, 2010

Polyamory heart by phidari

(polyamory public domain)

By Spencer D Gear

Linda Kirkman, a PhD candidate of Latrobe University, Melbourne, Australia, wrote this article, “Poly is the new gay“. She began with this statement:

“Keeping up with social change is exciting, and important. There is a growing awareness of polyamory [group sexual relationships] as a way to form relationships and families, and it is on the frontier of social change in acceptance of relationships. The more aware and accepting of diversity in relationships the more healthy our society is” (emphasis added).

Historically, this is an inaccurate statement.

The Macquarie Dictionarys definition for the third edition of 1997 is that monogamy means “marriage of one man with one woman”.  J. D. Unwin of Cambridge University did his study (in the 1920s) on the historical and sociological understanding of marriage. His conclusion from the evidence was:

“The whole of human history does not contain a single instance of a group becoming civilised unless it has been completely monogamous, nor is there any example of a group retaining its culture after it has adopted less rigorous customs. Marriage as a life-long association has been an attendant circumstance of all human achievement, and its adoption has preceded all manifestations of social energy…. Indissoluble monogamy must be regarded as the mainspring of all social activity, a necessary condition of human development”.

I refer you to Unwin’s works: “Monogamy as a Condition of Social Energy,” The Hibbert Journal 25, no. 4 (July 1927); no. 100, 662–77; and “Marriage in Cultural History,” in The Hibbert Journal 26, no. 4 (July 1928), no. 104, 695–706.

Kirkman has given this example:

The Australian newspaper ran a story on November 20, 2010, Three is the new two as couples explore the boundaries of non-monogamy, about a poly family of two women and a man who are having a baby. The writer, Emma Jane, used pseudonyms for the family, presumably to protect the people against discrimination, but wrote a supportive and positive article about this family’s normal and thoughtful existence, and about the growing emergence of polyamory worldwide. I hope it won’t be long before people in poly relationships don’t feel the need to protect themselves with pseudonyms. A same sex couple having a baby would no longer feel the need to hide their identity in this way. I look forward to a society where any loving family, irrespective of how many people it includes or what sex they are, feels safe to be open about who they are. [The Australian article may be found at, “Three is the new two as couples explore the boundaries non-monogamy”.]

In that respect, poly is the new gay.

Kirkman has given a modern interpretation, not a historical perspective. Unwin’s research demonstrated that the promotion of group loving relationships/sex is not the way to a more healthy society. Monogamy, one woman for one man for life, is the way to a healthy society, not Kirkman’s promotion of polyamory (consensual non-monogamy). The fact that polyamory is not even included in the third edition of The Macquarie Dictionary of 1997, indicates that it is a term of modern invention – dare I say, political correctness and promiscuity.

Bill Muehlenberg has exposed the dangers of group sex / polyamory in “Three cheers for polyamory”. For an article in support of heterosexuality, as opposed to homosexual marriage, published by The Australian newspaper, see Bill Muehlenberg’s, “Heterosexual marriage is society’s bedrock”.

 

Copyright (c) 2014 Spencer D. Gear.  This document last updated at date: 9 October 2015.

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Reasons to oppose homosexual marriage.

Tuesday, December 21st, 2010

Marriage cover photo

Courtesy Salt Shakers (Christian ministry)

By Spencer D Gear

There are rational reasons to oppose homosexual marriage. These are some of them:

1. The homosexual sexual act is a revolt against nature. For procreation to allow for the continuation of the human race, a heterosexual liaison is needed. If homosexual sex were normal and practised extensively, the human race would be greatly diminished.

2.  The rectum is not designed for sexual penetration; the vagina is. Anal sex is a high risk sexual activity. One of the many hazards is the vulnerability of the tissues to tearing and bleeding. Damage can be done to the sphincter muscles that may lead to incontinence and rectal prolapse. There is a high level of organisms that may cause disease in the rectum. If pathogens are introduced in the sex act, contagious diseases may spread. There are some authorities who oppose all anal sex as an unsafe sexual act because of the high rates of condom failure, even among condoms that are strengthened. (Some information from Wikipedia, “Anal sex“.)

3. Some research has shown that the risk for transmission of the HIV virus is higher for anal sex than for vaginal sex.

This report from 2008, “Inequitable Impact: The HIV/AIDS epidemic among gay and bisexual men and other men who have sex with men in Massachusetts“, demonstrates the increased HIV rate among MSM (men having sex with men) in Massachusetts:

“This is the second in a series of reports examining the impact of the HIV/AIDS epidemic on residents of Massachusetts. The first report, An Added Burden: The Impact of the HIV/AIDS Epidemic on Communities of Color in Massachusetts, focused on the ongoing racial/ethnic disparities in HIV incidence and prevalence in the Commonwealth. This report examines one mode of HIV exposure, same-sex sexual behavior between men, and its role in an inequitable impact of HIV on gay/bisexual men and other men who have sex with men.

Efforts to reduce the transmission of HIV in Massachusetts have been successful in a number of populations at risk, including injection drug users and heterosexual men and women. However, less success can be reported from work with gay and bisexual men and other men who have sex with men (MSM), who represent over 50% of HIV cases reported among Massachusetts men between the years 2004 and 2006, and 39% of all HIV cases reported during this period. These rates of new infection are striking in light of the fact that only 4.3-9.4% of Massachusetts men (18-64 years old) report having had sex with men in the past twelve months on standardized behavioral surveys over the past seven years. These impacts represent an inequitable rate of infection that is nearly 25 times higher for men who have sex with men than for men who report only having had sex with women (emphasis added).

While the impact of HIV on MSM is most evident among white men, at 70% of new white male cases, MSM has emerged as a first- or second-ranked mode of exposure for black and Hispanic men in recent years. In half of the health service regions of the Commonwealth, MSM is the leading mode of exposure for persons recently reported with HIV, particularly evident in Boston, Metrowest, and Southeastern Massachusetts. The inequitable impact of HIV on MSM is also seen among the youngest persons at risk, with 44% of individuals age 13-24 recently reported with HIV having MSM as their mode of exposure. Even among men not born in the US, MSM represents over a third of new HIV cases reported in Massachusetts.

In Africa, “On average it is estimated that HIV infection rates amongst MSM (men who have sex with men) are four to five times higher than the population overall, with highs in certain areas” (AFRICA: Homophobia fuelling the spread of HIV).

The male homosexual lifestyle does increase the risks of HIV.

The levels of promiscuity in the homosexual community also elevate the rates of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). This summary report, ‘The health risks of gay sex’, by John R. Diggs Jr. M.D., states:

Sexual relationships between members of the same sex expose gays, lesbians and bisexuals to extreme risks of Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs), physical injuries, mental disorders and even a shortened life span. There are five major distinctions between gay and heterosexual relationships, with specific medical consequences. They are:

  • Levels of Promiscuity

Prior to the AIDS epidemic, a 1978 study found that 75 percent of white, gay males claimed to have had more than 100 lifetime male sex partners: 15 percent claimed 100-249 sex partners; 17 percent claimed 250-499; 15 percent claimed 500- 999; and 28 percent claimed more than 1,000 lifetime male sex partners. Levels of promiscuity subsequently declined, but some observers are concerned that promiscuity is again approaching the levels of the 1970s. The medical consequence of this promiscuity is that gays have a greatly increased likelihood of contracting HIV/AIDS, syphilis and other STDs.

Similar extremes of promiscuity have not been documented among lesbians. However, an Australian study found that 93 percent of lesbians reported having had sex with men, and lesbians were 4.5 times more likely than heterosexual women to have had more than 50 lifetime male sex partners. Any degree of sexual promiscuity carries the risk of contracting STDs.

4.  I found some interesting dynamics in the front-page news of The Courier-Mail newspaper of surrogacy for homosexual male parents (Joy and condemnation of gay dad’s legal surrogacy, 20 November 2010).  For a child to be born to make such surrogacy possible, it is not feasible without the involvement of a female ovum and a male sperm. Paradoxical, isn’t it? What would happen if the child born for this male homosexual couple were a female? Would that be another reason for killing the pre-born through abortion?

5.  This is not just an issue for homosexuals. A 2005 survey found that ‘40% of men and 35% of women have had anal sex with an opposite-sex partner,” 40% of men and 35% of women, aged 25-44” (CDC), were engaged in heterosexual oral sex. This was a study by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

6. Please read this assessment by Brian Camenker in 2008 of “What same-sex marriage has done to Massachusetts: It’s far worse than most people realize“.

Examine the impact in Massachusetts on education in schools right down to the primary school level. Observe how it influences public health, increased domestic violence, business, the legal profession, adoption of children, Government mandates, the public square and the mass media.

7. These are excellent physiological reasons for rejecting homosexual marriage and the anal sexual act. However, for me a greater moral issue is God’s view that heterosexual marriage is God’s ordained method for marriage and reproduction. From the very earliest of times, according to Genesis 1:27-28, we know this: “’So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them. And God blessed them. And God said to them, ˜Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth. This is impossible for the homosexual to do. As for the marriage union, God said: Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh. And the man and his wife were both naked and were not ashamed (Genesis 2:24-25). From the beginning of time, God’s design is for the marriage union to be between a man and a woman.

For any country or state to vote against this law of heterosexual marriage and support homosexual marriage, it will be promoting what is unnatural, ungodly and destructive to the country.

 

Copyright (c) 2013 Spencer D. Gear.  This document last updated at Date: 9 October 2015.

Noah's Animals

One woman’s journey out of lesbianism: An interview with Jeanette Howard

Sunday, December 19th, 2010

Out of Egypt

(image courtesy Book Depository)

By Spencer D Gear

Former lesbian, Jeanette Howard of England, says: “I stand in awe at what God has done in my life. Where I saw hopelessness, he saw hopefulness. Where I saw pain, he saw potential. Where I saw disaster, he saw a daughter” (from the cover of her book, Out of Egypt: Leaving Lesbianism Behind. (1991. Oxford: Monarch Publications).

During her visit to Australia’s capital city of Canberra in 1993, I (Spencer Gear[1]) interviewed Jeanette. At that time I spoke with Jeanette about her lesbianism and the way out. I found Jeanette to be a forthright, open and friendly woman with a burden to minister to people at all levels of society, not just the homosexual community. (Note: My questions to Jeanette are in bold.)

Spencer: Jeanette, when did your struggle begin with lesbianism?

Jeanette: I wouldn’t have put a name on it, but from a very early age (about four or five), I felt very different, very alienated from my own sex. I had very much gender confusion. I would look at boys and think, well I’m not a boy, but I would look at girls and think: I don’t think I’m a real girl either. And although I never classified it as lesbianism, it certainly was a path towards choices that I made later in life.

There was a sense that biologically I knew I was female, but I really didn’t have an identity of being female, a sense of femaleness – very much a third sex mentality. I just couldn’t emotionally relate to what a woman was all about.

In my pre-teen years, my greatest delight was being mistaken for a boy. I have photographs of one incident I remember. We all bought cowboy outfits, my brothers, sister and myself. I bought a cowgirl outfit with my sister, a nice looking skirt for cowgirls, but in the photo I am without the cowgirl’s skirt. “That’s not who I am, so I’d rather not wear anything than be identified with a female,” was how I thought.

Can you understand when that began? What were the influences that caused you to feel that way?

Gender confusion? I really don’t know. It was just an increased sense of “I do not belong.”

Was there some kind of rejection in your family?

You know, there is a funny thing about rejection, whether it’s real or perceived, the individual feels it. If you ask my mother, “Did you reject Jeanette?” she’ll say, “Absolutely not.” You must understand that my mother worked full time fairly soon after the five of us were born, so she had five children under the age of six years and was a school teacher. She always talked about her children in school. My understanding was that they meant more to her then we did. We were unable to express ourselves emotionally at all.

The whole family?

Oh yes, and my parents did not express their love for one another in any way that I saw, either verbally or emotionally.

So you had this gender confusion. When did you begin to identify with or practise as a lesbian?

I didn’t practise lesbianism until I was 18 years old, but in the early teenage years I went to an all-girls’ school and we were quite happy pretending to get married and there was a lot of unity there. I was very happy, but I certainly took a tomboy role. That was natural to me, I guess. I was very much the boyish type. Very early in the teenage years, it almost seemed like overnight the girls became aware of boys. And they were beginning to be obsessed about pop stars and the boys across the river, the boys’ school across the river. It really left me quite high and dry. It’s almost like I’d stood still; they were wandering off and I made quite abortive attempts to retain their interest. I had my hair cut like the most popular pop star; I wore boys clothes. I didn’t particularly act in a mannish manner, but when I look back on it now it was a very non-feminine type of behaviour.

So, if you put on the facade, you will get their support?

That’s right, because I didn’t understand what else they could be interested in. Naturally enough, that didn’t work. Then I started having crushes on teachers and older girls in the school. Female teachers. That was a little worrisome, so I went to the library and got out a book on child development. I was about aged 14. Of course I read that it’s often a phase that people go through and grow out of, so that waylaid my fears, except that I didn’t grow out it. It was a long wait, this outgrowing.

You said you moved into lesbianism at about 18. What happened at that time?

I had opportunities to go into lesbianism before, from a couple of the girls in school, but I was too frightened. Fear was always a great motivator in my life. But when I went to university, I was seduced by the senior lecturer. She was 30 years older, had four children, the eldest of which was only three years younger than I. But it was a sense of belonging, this is me.

This relationship lasted three years. I guess I was faithful for two years, and then I used to go to the gay night clubs and had a series of relationships after that.

We use the term “gay” and some counsellors and others are saying that it’s not quite as gay as it’s made out to sound. What was your lesbian lifestyle like?

Well it was a sense of belonging, a sense of sisterhood, bonding, that I had lost from about age 11. I didn’t have that for about six years. So when I walked into my first gay bar, I sensed that this is where I belong. If you’ve spent that long not belonging anywhere, you’ll take on anything.

I would look at men and women in the street holding hands, and I guess my thought really was, “Why can’t I have a girlfriend and do it that freely?” So it wasn’t a sense of being . . . it’s like, why must I hide?

So you weren’t ashamed?

I guess I must have been ashamed in that I didn’t tell my parents. I kept it from most of my straight friends; there was fear of rejection. If they really knew me, they wouldn’t have liked me. So what was it like to be a lesbian? I was never good at making friends, so there was no great depth to a relationship. I think part of this was because I was brought up in a family that did not know how to express themselves, either verbally or emotionally. I don’t know if that has to do with my lesbianism, but I knew that I couldn’t really invest in people. I trusted no one but me. I was very withdrawn emotionally. The only way I knew how to express myself was through sexual relations.

What then are the roots of lesbianism? What are the factors that influence one towards a homosexual lifestyle?

This is not set in concrete, because of what I’m going to say. I’ve been in ministry now for five years, and spoken with a number of ministry leaders, and I’ve found there seems to be a consensus of opinion, but bearing in mind that everyone’s individual, and not everyone has every factor in their life. But one of them is a sense of rejection from the same sex parent, and the lack of bonding.

This has been my experience in counselling homosexuals over a number of years. It seems to be fairly much across the board, male and female, that sense of rejection, lack of bonding with the same-sex parent.

That’s right, lack of bonding, and then the relationship with the opposite sex parent often is at fault. For me, I always strove to get affirmation from my father.

And did you get it?

If I performed. But I think of one occasion when I was shattered. I was useless at maths and I got 9 out of 10 for a test, which I thought was pretty good. I came home, told my father, who turned to me and said, “What was wrong with the other one?” And yet I think he was pleased. He had no idea how to express himself, or to receive anything good. He probably was doing the best he could, he had no idea. He still has no idea.

Jeanette Howard 140x210 (photograph Jeanette Howard, courtesy Hope for Wholeness Network)

What was your relationship like with Mum.

Distant and cold, I guess. It took me a long while to realise that her way of expressing love was through finances. I remember as a teenager coming home and she gave me some money, and I remember thinking, “All I want is for you to hug me.” I had a nervous breakdown when I was 10. The relationship with my mother was not good. I remember at the age of 18 months (yes, I can remember back that far) when I was being potty-trained. I didn’t want to go on the potty and mother was making me. We were watching a circus on television and she sat behind me and put her hands on my shoulders and made me sit. And I remember thinking, “You’ll never touch me like that again.” So there was a real detachment on my part too, there was a pulling away from, and I think that’s probably why I spent so much growing-up time watching television with those happy families and wanting her to be my mum. There were a number of women I wanted to be my mother, who expressed care, compassion, love and acceptance, which is what I didn’t feel.

Your book, Out of Egypt: Leaving Lesbianism Behind (Monarch Publications) describes your journey. What’s the significance of the phrase, “out of Egypt”?

Long before I knew that I was going to deal with my homosexuality, I was talking to a woman about my story and she said, “You know, that is just like coming out of Egypt.” That was back in 1987 and it pierced me. I don’t know why. But of course later I knew. I looked at the walk of the Hebrews and saw that the journey out of Egypt was just the first step. God’s almighty parting of the Red Sea, a mighty deliverance, then on into the wilderness and finally Canaan, the land of promise. I thought that really has been my walk. God delivering me out of a bondage and yet it has not been straight from bondage to promise. I don’t believe there’s a three-minute prayer that’s going to pop me out of one life into another.

What sparked your interest in Jesus Christ?

I was a school teacher with a low threshold of interest and I became bored teaching in the school that I was in and we had a sister school in Tamworth, NSW. Some of the students would go for a term exchange. I thought of a way to retain my job and go to the other side of the world, and leave my current lover. (I didn’t know how to do that properly.) So I suggested that I’d do a year teacher’s exchange in Australia. But I didn’t realise it was a Christian school. I fought tooth and nail against anything Christian, and I strongly objected to people thinking they had two minutes to convert you now.

What spoke to me were those people who didn’t mention Jesus. Their quality of life would haunt me, the way they lived their life. One woman purchased a new car one week and she lent it to me the next week. That just threw me beyond belief that someone did not see that the things she owned were hers, but were to give out and bless others. That struck me beyond anything else. But it was their quality of life that spoke to me and I started getting interested in God. But of course pride got in the way. For eight months, I’d been close to stoning the Christians, I wasn’t really going to turn round and say, “Now can I come to church?” But there was a woman on the staff, a pastor’s wife, and I was able to speak to her and I said, “Please give me a book to read, but put it in a brown paper bag, put it under my desk in the staff room and don’t you dare tell anyone that I’m going to read a Christian book.” And I used to read it at night under the bed clothes with a torch. And that was my first interest. This was at Calrossy Girls School in Tamworth.

You haven’t shared with anybody at that School about your own struggle and how you came out of lesbianism?

The pastor’s wife knows, but she has moved to Sydney.

So that was the starter, the lifestyle of Christian teachers.

Observing them. I knew they had something I did not have. That was powerful stuff. But you know how Satan is? At the same time I got into a relationship with a Christian girl. She was everything I’d always wanted in a relationship. So I had this tussle–I wanted God, but I also wanted my lover. I thought: I’ll be a gay Christian, that’s the obvious thing to do. I’m a great one for going to textbooks, so I got out some theological books and of course half of them were so theologically liberal. They said, “Yes, of course you can. It’s just another expression of God’s love.” In retrospect, I knew the Holy Spirit was beginning to work.

It’s interesting the way people acted with me. I did end up going to church and I got in the drama team, the evangelistic drama team. This was a good ploy because I was good at drama.

At Christmas I moved out to stay with someone. I led her to the Lord without ever being a Christian myself. I told her what to do. She said, that seems good. I said it does, doesn’t it? She became a Christian. I left Australia as a non-Christian but with a Bible. I went back to England on New Year’s Eve, and went straight to a gay bar to bring in the new year. From a year of complete Christian company, to walking into a gay bar on new year’s eve night is what I needed. I needed the shock value and I went round telling my friends, “I have something better than this.” They asked what it was. I said I didn’t know, but it’s better than this.

I went round all the friends I’d not seen for a year saying, “I have something better.” Of course I hadn’t a clue what it was. I thought it was Christianity but I’d not really heard the gospel.

The amazing workings of God, the prompting of the Spirit of God, now that you look back.

That’s right. And I just read my Bible. I knew that I wouldn’t go back to the bar and I didn’t know one Christian in England. So I just read my Bible all the time, apart from teaching. And I’d be reading all through the night, a couple of hours sleep and I’d get up, teach, and I’d come straight back to read the Bible.

I read the Bible for hours and hours. I nearly read the whole Bible through in the month, and then I got to John 15:16 where it said, “You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit–fruit that will last.” And it suddenly hit me that God had chosen me and my response was that I either totally rejected or I totally accepted. A black and white thinker is good when it’s under the lordship of Christ.

But I also knew that if I was to become a Christian, I had to turn my back on homosexuality. I couldn’t be both, I knew that.

So here you were, you hadn’t yet made a commitment to Christ, but you knew

that you had to go away from the lesbian lifestyle.

Yes, and I knew that it was not God’s best for me. Now that was a major decision because I really didn’t know anything about God. And yet I had to put all my eggs in one basket.

How do you respond to the statement that the biblical teaching with regard to

homosexuality relates to homosexuality as sin and we need to grieve over our

sin, and of course repentance is involved. How do you see that?

I didn’t think I had to grieve over it. I did repent. But lesbianism to me was not a sin, it didn’t feel like a sin. Now God said it was a sin, but it sure didn’t feel like it to me. So the first thing I had to do was to ask God to help me see my lesbianism as He saw it. Because I saw it as somewhat fulfilling, natural and acceptable, that’s not what I read.

How did you move from a third sex view to it’s natural, I like it, to the point

where God is confronting you with what He thinks of it?

I just had to ask Him for His eyes. Gradually that happened. At the point of conversion, I turned my back on homosexual activity and identity. That was a choice, that was not an emotional response. All I had at my point of conversion was tears. That was on January 23, 1985, 2:30 am.

Reading your Bible?

Yes, reading my Bible.

You weren’t with anybody else at the time?

No, but I had read somewhere that you’re meant to tell someone. And I thought, well, I don’t know anyone and also it was 2:30 in the morning. So I phoned Australia. I thought I have to tell someone, so I actually phoned my Christian lover and she was pleased, but she knew what it meant for our relationship–it was over. So that was with mixed feelings too.

I understand that you went to an ex-gay ministry, Love in Action, in the San

Francisco Bay area of California for a 12-months live-in program. What was the

purpose of this?

Psalm 68:6 says “God sets the lonely in families”. The way this ministry is set up is that people who struggle with homosexuality live in different houses with leaders and assistants. The goal is to re-establish or perhaps establish for the first time a family-type environment and do the normal duties in a family. This helps to bring some stability into your life within a family. That part of my life was very stable anyway, apart from the family relations.

There were group meetings to deal with issues. We attended Bible study nights and were integrated into the life of the church. This was an instrumental part of my healing process. I would say a year in that program took three years out of the healing process.

What were the elements in the Love in Action program that projected you into a faster growth rate?

Accountability, honesty, communication, just everything came under the lordship of Christ. You could run but you couldn’t hide. It’s interesting that most people now stay on for a second year because obviously not everything’s dealt with in a year. You’re in a very intensive program, so the second year eases off; it gives you more responsibility to get back into society.

Let’s talk about instantaneously coming out of homosexuality. There’s a view that says, “Jesus is in the supernatural business, He has the ability to change you immediately.” Obviously He has that ability, but what happens with homosexuality? Do you see much of that taking place, where somebody is lesbian one minute, and the next day is something quite different?

You have to look at the reasons why people express themselves in a homosexual way–their background, motivation factors, rejection, sexual abuse, peer group pressure. There are a number of areas like that, which you’re not delivered from but are healed through.

A lot of homosexuality is learned behaviour, which has to be unlearned and then new behaviour taken on board. In my five years of being in ministry, I’ve yet to see anyone instantaneously changed. With wholehearted commitment you see major change in a few years. With half-baked commitment, I see them sliding back.

On the healing scale, if we could use that sort of analogy, where are you in the

healing process? Let’s say 100% being you are perfectly whole and healed.

Well, today, I’m about 98%. Tomorrow I could be 90%, or I could be 99%. It’s not one day at a time inasmuch as I live in fear, but I am aware. Recently a prominent Christian in America has sexually fallen, again. It keeps coming time and time again, so I am careful lest I fall, but I know what I call my red flag areas. I know when I need to be more careful.

Can you share some of those?

Sure, like I need to know my body cycle, the times of the month when I’m more vulnerable to people showing me affection. With women, emotional dependency often precedes lesbian activity.

One of the chapters in your book has that title, “Emotional dependency”. What are you referring to?

We’re talking about healthy relating. If I have a friend, I often say, if she breathes out, I breathe in. It’s an unhealthy enmeshment. My security is dependent on her being in my life. The two become one almost; there seems to be a lack of boundaries; I don’t know where I end and you begin. Often it ends up that you wear similar clothes. The “I” becomes “we”. There’s a state of panic if you think that you’ve got to not see her for a day, not be in contact by phone for a day. There’s a fear of loss because you see her as a possession. This is unhealthy emotional dependency that often is a lead into lesbianism.

Now that can happen in male/female relationships as well.

Course it can. It’s not a homosexual problem, it’s a people problem, but we find it manifests itself greatly with the lesbian. Interestingly, many of the men have not experienced emotional dependency until they start the healing process, until they stop allowing themselves sexual expression. It opens the doors to how they feel. And often the guys will get into a dependent relationship for the first time ever during the healing process. So it’s not necessarily to be seen as something totally negative for the guys especially. But it does need good control in accountability area.

The liberal church tends to want to endorse homosexuality, right? How can the evangelical church minister to the homosexual?

You don’t need to be an expert, and that’s the good news. Most of my healing has come from being accepted, feeling secure, affirmed within my church body. My church body recognised a call on my life to full-time ministry and they paid for me to go to a discipleship school and it was there God convicted me that I had to be real with my church, I had to go back and tell them. So I did that, received the pastor’s permission, and one Sunday morning I asked for their forgiveness. For two years I’d presented an image to them, an acceptable image of Christianity, but that was not who I was, and I shared who I really was. And as one, they stood up, gave a standing ovation, and said, whatever it takes for your healing, we will support you.

That’s an encouraging response. But that’s not always the way it is. In talking

with male and female homosexuals through the years, they generally find that

the evangelical church can be a place of rejection.

Rejection often is the response to ignorance and fear. One of the desires I have in my heart is to educate the churches.

What are some of the elements of the education process? What would you tell

the evangelical church in Australia, concerning homosexuality, that would help

them to better understand it, accept the homosexuals and minister to them?

First, they need to know that God changes lives. It’s worth investing in an individual. It’s not a wasted cause. Second, by knowing some of the root causes, you can apply the healing balm, that sense of identity. You can draw out of churches the Christian woman, Christian man, who can be role models. So, you need to get your own life in order to be a good role model. By going to lunch after church with a family, I learnt things like a husband and wife can argue and still respect one another, the children have a voice in the house, there’s really no problem that’s too big if God is the head of the household. I came from a dysfunctional family and I had much to learn. Not out of a textbook, I learnt by going to lunch with people just what a Christian family is all about, transparency. It is no good saying, “Hey we’re a church that welcomes those who hurt, come in, but we’ll keep our Sunday masks up, we’ll hide behind masks of arrogance, or humour or anger.” You need to be transparent yourself.

There should be no taboo subject in the church, because I should not feel too shamed to speak out about those areas that hurt me, and have affected me. There’s no sin too big for God.

Yet homosexuality is very often almost looked upon as the unpardonable sin. Is that your experience sometimes?

Yes. If you believe a lie long enough, it’s as though it’s truth, and society

puts out that you’re born that way, and therefore, what can the church

do? You’re never going to change, you’re just as you’re going to be, a

bad influence in this church and I’ve got children; the doors close and the

arms get folded. But because it’s a sin, that’s good news.

How can that be?

If it’s genetic, hormonal, or anything like that, then I’ve got no hope apart from some scientific breakthrough, but if it’s sin, then like any other sin, Jesus Christ died for it. When Paul tells the Corinthians the list of sins–of being drunkards, swindlers, everything else. [I Corinthians 6:9-11] He says that “such were some of you.” We often stop at the list and forget the next phrase, “you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified.”

That was good news for me, that it was sin, because then you know that you can be changed.

Let’s say a church wants to help the homosexual community. Where can it begin?

In my opinion, it’s not going on the streets. If you come from a basis of rejection, and you get someone on the street challenging you that your homosexuality’s wrong, to the person challenging they’re saying one aspect of your life is wrong, but to the homosexual that is their life. You’re saying the way you think, the way you breathe, the way you emote, every single aspect of your life is completely wrong. You see, what you say to me and how I receive it are two entirely different things. And if you come from a basis of rejection, you do not want someone telling you overtly that you are unacceptable. And it’s also no good saying, “But you know I love you.” God has to open your eyes to the sin of homosexuality. God opened mine.

The heterosexual community has far more in common with homosexuals than is immediately recognised. I struggle with pride, but you struggle with anger, but we all struggle. But we all need a Saviour. Not I need a Saviour because I’m a homosexual.

So let’s work on the similarities and not on the differences. Then you will win trust eventually, and then you let them bring up the homosexual issue. Let them lead the way on it.

So really, you’re doing evangelism and it doesn’t matter what sin you’re committing?

Exactly. It’s not a bigger deal to reach the homosexuals. Crusades into the homosexual community produce anger, violence and a real closing down to the gospel.

So you don’t head onto the streets to minister to the homosexual?

You go on the streets and evangelise everyone. Let them raise the issue of their homosexuality. We must get this straight: God’s not concerned whether you go to hell as a homosexual or a heterosexual. So homosexuality’s not an issue. It’s the fact that you need a Saviour, whatever you’ve come from.

Where does one begin if one wants to counsel the homosexual?

You’ve got to build trust, but that’s through any counselling, so that’s no different. You have to be aware that people are living under deceit very much. They will have been brought up thinking, I’m born that way, life is tough, the change process is tough, and of course you’re always tempted to return to your old thought processes. Or haven’t I changed enough God? At least I’m not sleeping with her! So at every level of healing there will be a bit of marching time, I am weary of this, and understandably so. But it’s like: how much of God do you want in your life? The pursuit is wholeness, not heterosexuality.

The angle I take is that they’ve still got homosexuality, that’s the common factor within the group. But if I’m just aiming for heterosexuality I’m aiming low, because heterosexuality is as fallen as homosexuality in this world. So I pursue wholeness in Christ, what it is to have Jesus in every aspect of my life, in every thought that I think, every action that I do, every emotion that I feel. A by-product of that is a heterosexual orientation. But if I aim for heterosexuality, God can get by-passed in that. Guess what happens when your sexuality comes under the lordship of Christ? The Elim program I do with my men and women coming out of homosexuality hardly touches on homosexuality.

I spend a few weeks on who God is. With a faulty understanding of God, we’ll get faulty healing. You build a tower and the foundations are cracking; guess what happens to the tower? So who is God? I spend weeks on that. Now can I trust Him? Yes. So we look at who I am. God gives me an identity. I had one as a lesbian, but God’s giving me a new one: who I am in Christ.

You’re not a homosexual in your identity; who are you in Christ now?

A child of God. What on earth does that mean? The apple of His eye, accepted in the beloved.

Then I look at forgiveness, trust, honouring your parents, things that I’ve taught regular men and women too; it’s the same program. But I have questions at the end for their homework. Do the teaching before you start going over the questions; we take a few weeks at that and praying through it to find out where their faulty thinking is. That’s where the homosexual information comes up.

Any new books in the pipeline?

I’ve had a number of requests for a workbook to go with Out of Egypt. So I’ll be preparing something similar to the program that I run, to go with the chapters in the book. I would like to do a follow-up book, but I believe I’m walking that process at the moment.

Since that interview 22 years ago, Jeanette has written a new book. In January 2016, Monarch Books (Oxford, UK) will release Jeanette Howard’s new book, Dwelling in the Land: Bringing Same-Sex Attraction Under the Lordship of Christ.

Dwelling in the Land

(image courtesy Book Depository)

Notes:


[1] This interview was published in two parts, “A Changed Life”, New Day, October 1994, pp. 12-14 and “A Changed Heart”, New Day, November 1994, pp. 14-15. New Day is currently not being published.

 

Copyright © 2010 Spencer D. Gear. This document last updated at Date: 28 September 2016.

 

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Governments may promote gay marriage. Should we as evangelical Christians?

Saturday, December 18th, 2010

Another Heart Marriage Equality Bw I Support Love Red Equal.png
(courtesy clipartist.net)

Spencer D Gear

Governments have changed legislation and brought in new social changes through the centuries. Christians are bigoted, intolerant and narrow-minded for considering that homosexuals will burn in hell.

That’s the view of Meryl Miller, a new columnist in the Fraser Coast Chronicle (FCC), in her new column, The M-Files, “Face the facts, folks: gay marriage is on the way” (3 December 2010, p. 21). On 6 December 2010, I phoned the FCC editor, Peter Chapman, to ask if he would accept an article as my right of reply to Miller’s article. Even though I pressed for the need for balance by adding my opposing article, he refused, claiming that the controversial nature of some columnists encourages people to write letters to the editor. He said that he would consider a lengthy letter from me.

Miller’s new column generated so much telephone response that editor, Peter Chapman’s “My Comment” column, “New column had the phone ringing” (FCC, 4 December 2010, p. 18), stated that “I have asked her not to write about religion next week nor cats, dogs and dingoes”. Miller had advocated for “the rights of homosexuals and lesbians to marry their partners”, according to Chapman. However, Chapman’s views are that “it’s a touchy subject for many of us” and “the truth is it’s really something we are going to have to accept”.

Really? Not in your life for me. On 7 December 2010, I sent a letter to the editor of the FCC that incorporates some of the following material.

Miller promotes the following fallacies on which her philosophy teeters.

Taking examples from contemporary society as norms for morals is a dangerous practice (examples given in the article were of deaths of the indigenous, equal rights for women and against domestic violence, out-of-wedlock babies, defacto relationships, climate change, flat-earthers, Salem witch-hunters, etc). It’s dangerous because relativism and pragmatism at government level, have produced some of the most horrendous ethics in world history. Ever heard of the Holocaust, Pol Pot’s genocide in Cambodia, Stalin’s killing fields, the genocide of abortion, euthanasia in Holland, etc? When I give individuals and governments the right to make up their own moral framework, I cannot stop the logical conclusions of giving that right to everyone.

By the way, I take public stands against discrimination and immorality based on ethnicity, domestic violence against women, sexual abuse, pedophilia, abortion, euthanasia, etc. However, that does not give governments or individual human beings the authority to invent what is right and wrong. Ethics needs a higher norm than puny human decisions.

To say that “slowly, inexorably, we are inching towards a society which is more tolerant, more understanding, more compassionate, more open-minded” is a very intolerant statement because it opposes all those who do not accept Miller’s agenda of ‘tolerance’. Miller is as intolerant as anyone around, except she is intolerant towards those who oppose her views, while blaming the Christians and heterosexuals for being intolerant.

If “gay marriage is no more harmful to our moral fibre than other modern conventions we once found so shocking”, why is it that heterosexual marriage has been the norm throughout human history? Scoffing at “archaic views on gay marriage” amounts to being scornful of the tried and tested moral absolute of marriage exclusively for a man and a woman. Miller establishes her own absolute of relativistic pragmatism. She promotes her intolerant ‘tolerance’ towards those who support exclusively heterosexual marriage. Hers is a self-defeating argument. It is not an “open-minded” approach but a promotion of homosexual marriage while rejecting the heterosexual exclusive nature of what God has created.

God’s view is that heterosexual marriage is His ordained method for marriage and reproduction. From the very earliest of times, according to Genesis 1:27-28, we know this: ‘God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them. God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it”’.

This is impossible for the homosexual to do. As for the marriage union, God said: “Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh. And the man and his wife were both naked and were not ashamed” (Genesis 2:24-25). From the beginning of time, God’s design is for the marriage union to be exclusively between a man and a woman. This is impossible for homosexuals to do.

As for the marriage union, God said, “That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh. Adam and his wife were both naked, and they felt no shame” (Genesis 2:24-25). From the beginning of time, God’s design has been for the marriage union to be between a man and a woman. Governments that change this are working according to their own, fallible, imperfect human ethics.

So they are “religious extremists who preach from their lofty soap-boxes that homosexuals will burn in hell”, according to Miller. This is a self-defeating argument as the author herself is promoting an extremist position of tolerance towards homosexuals but she is not prepared to be tolerant to “religious extremists” who differ from her view. By the way, she has no clue about the doctrine of hell when she doesn’t understand who will be going there. It’s time she read and understood the Bible (I’m working on my PhD in New Testament).

Miller opposes the intolerant, bigoted, narrow-mined, heartless people who state that homosexuals will burn in hell, while claiming she is a Christian. It’s time that Miller knew the Scriptures which state that all unrepentant unbelievers will not inherit the Kingdom of God. First Corinthians 6:9-11 includes the sexually immoral, including adulterers, prostitutes, homosexuals, idolaters, thieves, greedy, drunkards, slanderers and swindlers. The good news of the Gospel is “that is what some of you were”. Jesus changes all sinners from the inside out.

Since when did Miller become a systematic theologian to pronounce that “the laws of God do not, should not, determine the laws between consenting adults in a committed relationship”? That’s Miller’s relativistic invention, not God’s standard.

She says that “I consider myself a Christian – but that does not give me the right to be a moral dictator”. What is a Christian that enables Miller to make such an anti-biblical statement? Christians believe that governments “do what is good” (according to God’s standards) and government is “an avenger who carries out God’s wrath on the wrongdoers” (Romans 14). These are wrongdoers according to God’s absolutes of right and wrong according to Scriptures, not relativistic governmental standards and the norms of morality created by Miller.

She rejoices in the birth of Connor Harris through surrogacy and two male homosexuals are the parents. It takes a male sperm and a female ovum to create human life. Homosexuals cannot create human life alone.

What has happened in Massachusetts (USA) with the legalisation of homosexuality and homosexual marriage has provided an example of the increase in HIV infection within the homosexual community. This report from 2008, “Inequitable Impact:The HIV/AIDS Epidemic Among Gay and Bisexual Men and Other Men Who Have Sex with Men in Massachusetts”, demonstrates the increased HIV rate among MSM (men having sex with men) in Massachusetts:

“This is the second in a series of reports examining the impact of the HIV/AIDS epidemic on residents of Massachusetts. The first report, An Added Burden: The Impact of the HIV/AIDS Epidemic on Communities of Color in Massachusetts, focused on the ongoing racial/ethnic disparities in HIV incidence and prevalence in the Commonwealth. This report examines one mode of HIV exposure, same-sex sexual behavior between men, and its role in an inequitable impact of HIV on gay/bisexual men and other men who have sex with men.

Efforts to reduce the transmission of HIV in Massachusetts have been successful in a number of populations at risk, including injection drug users and heterosexual men and women. However, less success can be reported from work with gay and bisexual men and other men who have sex with men (MSM), who represent over 50% of HIV cases reported among Massachusetts men between the years 2004 and 2006, and 39% of all HIV cases reported during this period. These rates of new infection are striking in light of the fact that only 4.3-9.4% of Massachusetts men (18-64 years old) report having had sex with men in the past twelve months on standardized behavioral surveys over the past seven years. These impacts represent an inequitable rate of infection that is nearly 25 times higher for men who have sex with men than for men who report only having had sex with women (emphasis added).

While the impact of HIV on MSM is most evident among white men, at 70% of new white male cases, MSM has emerged as a first- or second-ranked mode of exposure for black and Hispanic men in recent years. In half of the health service regions of the Commonwealth, MSM is the leading mode of exposure for persons recently reported with HIV, particularly evident in Boston, Metrowest, and Southeastern Massachusetts. The inequitable impact of HIV on MSM is also seen among the youngest persons at risk, with 44% of individuals age 13-24 recently reported with HIV having MSM as their mode of exposure. Even among men not born in the US, MSM represents over a third of new HIV cases reported in Massachusetts.

In Africa, “On average it is estimated that HIV infection rates amongst MSM (men who have sex with men) are four to five times higher than the population overall, with highs in certain areas” (AFRICA: Homophobia fuelling the spread of HIV).

The issues here are God’s absolutes versus humanistic relativism created by Miller, the Massachusetts legislature and others. What’s the difference? The differences are the reasons for opposing homosexual marriage. Miller’s major fallacies are that she creates her own relativistic absolutes that oppose God’s standards. None of us would be on earth if homosexuality were the norm. In addition, she is discriminatory against other relationship aberrations such as bigamy, polygamy and polyandry.  See Bill Muehlenberg’s excellent piece of satire, “Time for some real marriage equality”. The high level of HIV infection in the male homosexual community should sound off alarm bells!

The Fraser Coast Chronicle deserves better than to promote a one-eyed columnist who is narrow-minded in her opposition to what has sustained societies throughout human history – heterosexual marriage.

 

Copyright (c) 2015 Spencer D. Gear.  This document last updated at Date: 9 October 2015.

Dilemmas surrounding Judas Iscariot’s death

Wednesday, December 15th, 2010

Judas
ChristArt

By Spencer Gear

There are some alleged contradictions in the story of Judas Iscariot when we compare Matthew 27:3-10 and Acts 1:18-19. A friend has sent me the questions (in bold below). F. F. Bruce (1951:77) acknowledged that ‘the main problems are: (1) Who bought the field? (2) How did Judas die? (3) Why was the place called “the Field of Blood”?’

Was it Judas who bought the field or was it the priests? This is my first question. One text suggests the priests, the other suggests Judas.

Acts 1:18 does state that ‘Judas bought a field” and this field was called ‘in their language, Akeidama, that is field of blood’ (NIV). Most translations have Acts 1:18-19 as a parenthesis inserted by the author, Luke.

Matt. 27:6-8 says that “The chief priests picked up the coins and said, “It is against the law to put this into the treasury, since it is blood money.” 7 So they decided to use the money to buy the potter’s field as a burial place for foreigners.8 That is why it has been called the Field of Blood to this day” NIV).

On the surface it does sound contradictory, but notice the language of Matt. 27:6-8: The chief priests bought a potter’s field that was ‘a burial place for foreigners’, that was called ‘the Field of Blood to this day’.

F. F. Bruce in his commentary on the Book of Acts (Bruce 1979:49) states:

‘(According to Matt. 27:7, it was the chief priests who bought it with the reward of treachery, which Judas had had flung back in their faces. The common harmonization of the two accounts at this point –suggested, for example by E. Jacquier in Les Actes des Ap?tres (Paris, 1926), ad loc. – is that the chief priests, considering the thirty sheckles to be legally Judas’ property, bought the field with them in his name.) He did not live, however, to enjoy the fruits of his shameful act, for he swelled up and sustained a fatal rupture. (The Latin Vulgate harmonizes this account with Matthew’s by saying that “having hanged himself he burst asunder in the midst”; Augustine (Against Felix the Manichaean i.4) says “he fastened a rope round his neck and, falling on his face, burst asunder in the midst.”) It should be noted by the English reader that “in the midst” does not mean “in the midst of the field”, but refers to Judas’s body. The field was accordingly called by an Aramaic name meaning “the field of blood” (According to Matt. 27:7, it was the potter’s field, and was used thereafter to bury aliens in.)’

The other was how did he die? By hanging, or falling off the cliff headlong. Not that if someone hung themselves, it might appear unlikely that if the rope broke, that he would fall headlong.

Three things are stated of Judas and his death:

  1. Judas ‘hanged himself’ (Matt. 27:5 NIV), and
  2. He ‘fell headlong’ (Acts 1:18 NIV);
  3. ‘His body burst open and all his intestines spilled out’ (Acts 1:18 NIV).

Are any of these facts contradictory?

What does it mean that he fell ‘headlong’ (Acts 1:18)? ‘Headlong” is the Greek, pr?n?s. In Arndt & Gingrich’s Greek lexicon, it gives the meaning of pr?n?s as ‘forward, prostate, head first, headlong’ but admits the meaning, ‘swollen, distended’ as a possibility (1957:707). Therefore “headlong” is not the necessary meaning.

One of the greatest NT Greek scholars of all time, Dr. A. T. Robertson, wrote that the meaning is not ‘headlong’ but ‘”flat on the face” as opposed to kuptios on the back’ (Robertson 1930:16). F. F. Bruce (1951:77) in his Greek commentary on the Book of Acts states that ‘fell headlong’ is literally, ‘”having become prone”, i.e. falling flat’.

So if I follow these Greek authorities, it is easy to see that when Judas was released from whatever device hanged him, he fell forward, prostrate, flat on his face. So there is no contradiction between a person being hanged and his then falling prostrate on his face (‘fell headlong’).

I have no problem in understanding that a body that died from hanging and falls on its face can ‘burst open; and have the intestines spill open. Acts 1:18 provides information that is supplementary to Matt. 27:3-10 and not what is contradictory. It is reasonable to infer that the rope that hanged Judas snapped under stress or through somebody cutting it and that when it fell, it hit something that caused the body to burst open and the intestines to fall out.

Therefore, Matthew (probably written to a Jewish audience) and Luke/Acts (probably for a Gentile audience) are like two journalists describing the same event but from different angles for different audiences.

My concern is that in putting forth their message, it still doesn’t explain some seemingly contradictory facts proposed to make their point. Who do you believe purchased the field? How do you make sense of him falling headlong after hanging?

Who purchased the field? The priests did, but with 30 pieces of silver that legally belonged to Judas. So the priests bought the field, but Judas also did it as it was Judas’s money.

There is no problem in understanding that a person can be hanged and fall on his face or on his head when being cut down from the hanging device.

Acts 1:18 How did Judas die?

This is how some scholars see it:

While Luke’s description of Judas’s death is rather gory, Acts 1:18 would not be a problem were it not that Matthew seemingly has a different story. In Matthew’s account, “Judas threw the money into the temple and left. Then he went away and hanged himself” (Matthew 27:5). Matthew also reports that the chief priests used the money “to buy the potter’s field as a burial place for foreigners.” Aren’t the two accounts contradictory?

It is clear that Matthew and Luke have different concerns in mentioning the incident. Matthew is more interested in the purchase of the field, which he sees as a fulfillment of Scripture. He combines Zech. 11:12-13 (the thirty pieces of silver and the potter) and Jeremiah 32:6-12 (buying a field), perhaps with overtones of Jeremiah 18:1-4 (going to the potter’s house), and links them all under Jeremiah’s name.

Luke has another concern, which is that Judas got what he deserved, a horrible death. (A similar situation is reported in Acts 12:21-24, where the author narrates the story of Herod Agrippa I’s death.) The focus is not on the purchase of the field (which would have appeared a reward, especially to Jews for whom landowning in Palestine was important), but on his death in the field (which was ghastly).

Both authors want to point out that the field was called “The Field of Blood,” thus memorializing the deed. Acts appears to connect the title to Judas’s blood in his death, while Matthew ties it to the fact that the blood money paid for the field. It is hardly surprising that the same name might mean different things to different people.

A closer look at the two stories highlights gaps in the narrative that raise questions about the events. But the accounts are not necessarily contradictory. Acts is concerned that Judas’s money and name were connected to a field. Whether or not the chief priests actually purchased it, perhaps some time after Judas’s death, would not be a detail of concern to the author. His point was the general knowledge that Judas’s money went to the purchase, which resulted in the title “Field of Blood” being attached to the field. Another possible reason for the name, also a concern of Acts, was that Judas split open and his intestines poured out. Such a defacing of the body, probably with the concomitant result of the corpse being at least partially eaten by vultures and dogs, was horrible in the view of the Jews, for whom proper burial was important. In fact, they even valued forms of execution that did not deface the outside of the body (such as strangulation) over forms that defaced the body (such as stoning, the worst form in their eyes).

Matthew points out that it was a guilt-motivated suicide, accomplished by the most common means, hanging. Suicide in Jewish literature is most often connected to shame or failure. (So 2 Samuel 17:23; compare the other accounts of suicide in Old Testament history, which were normally to avoid a more shameful death.) However, since suicide by hanging was usually accomplished (at least by poorer people) by jumping out of a tree with a rope around one’s neck, it was not unusual (nor is it uncommon in India today) for the body to be ripped open in the process. I hesitate to say that this was exactly what happened, but it is certainly a plausible explanation.
Therefore, we will never be fully certain about what happened at the death of Judas. What I have shown is that there are certainly credible explanations as to how the two accounts fit together. I have shown how it may well have happened, not how it must have happened. In doing so we see that there is no necessary contradiction. Yet what is important in reading these narratives is to focus on the points they are making, not on the horrible death. With Matthew we see that Scripture is fulfilled even while those fulfilling it are driven by guilt and shame to their own self-destruction. And with Acts we see that sin does have consequences: Judas not only lost his office through his treachery, but came to a shameful end as well, an end memorialized in the place near Jerusalem named “Field of Blood” (Kaiser, et al 1996:511-512).

Gleason Archer (1982:349-350) provides his assessment of Acts 1:18 online HERE.

References

Archer, G L 1982. Encyclopedia of Bible difficulties. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Regency Reference Library (Zondervan Publishing House). Available online HERE.

Arndt, W F & Gingrich, R W 1957. A Greek-English lexicon of the New Testament and other early Christian literature. Chicago: Chicago University Press.

Bruce, F F 1951. The Acts of the Apostles: The Greek text with introduction and commentary. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company.

Bruce, F F 1979. Commentary on the Book of Acts (The New International Commentary on the New Testament – F. F. Bruce, gen ed). Grand Rapids, Michigan: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company.

Kaiser, W C, Davids P H, Bruce F F & Brauch, M T 1996. Hard sayings of the Bible. Downers Grove, Illinois: InterVarsity Press, citation located HERE. A copy of this book is available at Google Books, “Hard Sayings of the Bible“.

Robertson, A T 1930. Word pictures in the New Testament: The Acts of the Apostles, vol 3. Nashville, Tennessee: Broadman Press.

 

Copyright (c) 2014 Spencer D. Gear.  This document is free content.  You can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of the OpenContent License (OPL) version 1.0, or (at your option) any later version.  This document last updated at Date: 24 March 2014.

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Genetic cause of homosexuality?

Saturday, December 11th, 2010

Female Homosexual Symbol Clip Art

clker.com

By Spencer D Gear

Homosexuality is “not some kind of insidious disease” [1] according to an anonymous letter writer to the Fraser Coast Chronicle (Name & address supplied to the editor). Instead, homosexuality “is a genetic inheritance handed down from the parents’ gene pool. Both mother and father may or may not contribute however in balance, it favours the mother’s side of the gene distribution”, says the writer who does not want to be identified publicly.

Part of the following is in my letter to the editor, sent 11 December 2010, to the Fraser Coast Chronicle. This letter was not published.

This genetic argument to support homosexuality was expected. To those who oppose homosexual marriage, this writer in the FCC states that homosexuality is caused by the “gene pool”. In other words, we are born this way. What is the inference if the cause is our genetic heredity? Is homosexuality therefore to be treated like Down Syndrome? The implication is that it cannot be changed. This letter writer did not quote any authority or research to support his/her views.

But for those who oppose this genetic cause (people like myself)[2], this writer lambasted us as “narrow-minded experts” and “slanderers” who are depriving homosexuals of “democratic rights and freedom of belief that the Christian God loves them”.

Name-calling is detrimental to a healthy discussion about any subject and especially a controversial one such as homosexuality.

When he was asked if homosexuality was rooted solely in biology (e.g., genetic inheritance), gay gene researcher, Dean Hamer, replied,

“Absolutely not. From twin studies, we already know that half or more of the variability in sexual orientation is not inherited. Our studies try to pinpoint the genetic factors … not negate the psychosocial factors”.[3]

In addition, a gay neuroscientist, promoter of gay rights and whose gay partner died of HIV, Simon LeVay, has acknowledged that there are multiple factors that may contribute to a homosexual orientation.[4]

LeVay told Discover Magazine, “I did not prove that homosexuality is genetic, or find a genetic cause for being gay. I didn’t show that gay men are born that way, the most common mistake people make in interpreting my work”.[5]

A study published in 2006 by Anthony F. Bogaert[6], Brock University, Canada, has been promoted worldwide as evidence of a biological basis of homosexuality in young men with older brothers. Bogaert’s research has been reviewed and some have found significant flaws in it.[7] Dr. Neil Whitehead, a NZ research scientist, found that one of Bogaert’s broad statistics could easily hide crucial confounding data.[8]

A recent study reported in the UK’s Guardian newspaper (2008) stated that US researchers found a growing consensus that sexual orientation is an inborn combination of genetic and environmental factors.[9]

Therefore, it is inaccurate and misleading for the FCC letter writer to place exclusive emphasis on genetic inheritance of homosexuality received from the parents’ genetic pool.

I agree that the Christian God loves everyone, but all behaviour has eternal consequences.

For your research:

There’s a range of articles dealing with the genetic or other causes of homosexuality on the NARTH website.


Notes:

[1] Fraser Coast Chronicle letters, “Sexuality is in the gene pool”, Name and address supplied but not printed, 10 December 2010, p. 20. The Fraser Coast incorporates Maryborough, Hervey Bay and Fraser Island in south-central Queensland, Australia.

[2] I have incorporated a letter-to-the-editor that I had published in the Fraser Coast Chronicle, 8 December 2010, “Heterosexual marriage has sustained societies” into this article, “Governments may promote gay marriage. Should we as evangelical Christians?

[3] Cited in Julie Harren 2008, “Homosexuality 101”, available from NARTH (National Association for Research & Therapy of Homosexuality) at: http://www.narth.com/docs/hom101.html (Accessed 11 December 2010).

[4] Ibid.

[5] Cited in A Dean Byrd, Shirley E Cox, & Jeffrey W Robinson 2001. “The innate-immutable argument finds no basis in science”, available from NARTH, http://www.narth.com/docs/innate.html (Accessed 11 December 2010).

[6] Details from, “Do mothers create gay sons in the womb?”, available from NARTH at: http://www.narth.com/docs/domothers.html (Accessed 11 December 2010).

[7] See “Canadian psychiatrist finds major flaws in Anthony Bogaert’s study of gay brothers”, available from NARTH at: http://www.narth.com/docs/bogaert.html (Accessed 11 December 2010).

[8] In ibid.

[9] “US researchers find evidence that homosexuality linked to genetics”, The Guardian [UK], 1 December 2008. Available at: http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2008/dec/01/homosexuality-genetics-usa (Accessed 11 December 2010).
Copyright © 2010 Spencer D. Gear. This document last updated at Date: 9 October 2015.

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