Can’t just pick out one biblical ‘edict’
Vail, CO, Colorado
I have some questions for Kyle Bradell regarding his “God’s will is clear to me” letter to the editor:
When was the last time you railed against individuals who pick up sticks on a Saturday?
Do you publicly protest against wearing clothes of mixed fabrics?
Do you wage passionate debates about men cutting their hair at the sides or trimming their beards?
Have you vehemently condemned anyone who touches pigskin?
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Do you join forces with preachers and religious fundamentalists to revile those who eat rare meat, birds of prey or shellfish?
Would you support legislation promoting polygamy or selling your daughters into slavery?
Have you personally reviled your neighbors for planting a mix of seeds in their yards?
You’d probably answer “no” or “never” to the above questions. And, it figures.
Every one of these items is promoted (polygamy and slavery) or condemned (all the others) in the book of Leviticus … right next to that old favorite about men lying with men.
That it is tossed into a list of things that are today considered ridiculous should tell you what God really thought of it. That you could accuse someone else with “you probably have not read the Bible in a while now to know what God loves and hates” stymies me, considering how little you appear to know about it yourself.
It also shows how little you understand God, for he is all loving and incapable of hate. Hate is a human emotion, and one with which you seem well acquainted.
The problem with Leviticus is that few have actually read it. Not surprising, considering it is a bit of a literary mess compared to the rest of the Bible.
People know and spew that one ever-famous passage, but they do not have a clue as to the context in which it is found. Or they conveniently don’t care.
Same-sex marriage opposers often reference the Bible (Leviticus) as their justification. Yet you never hear these same people argue all the other issues that book raises before and after that single sentence they are so fond of quoting.
By the way, Leviticus also says that men lying with menstruating women is as abominable as men who do with men.
And the book calls for a myriad of animal sacrifices I’m sure are not practiced in your church, Mr. Bradell.
When was the last time your priest or minister sacrificed a bull, sprinkled its blood on the altar, dismembered it and washed its entrails?
In point of fact, Jesus never once mentioned homosexuality. If it were it such a vile thing in God’s eyes, you can be absolutely sure that Moses would have returned with a tablet of 11 Commandments. Since he did not, we can assume that lying, using the Lord’s name in vain and dishonoring one’s parents are far worse. In that context, homosexuality doesn’t appear to be such a serious thing.
I don’t know you, Mr. Bradell, but I would bet you have been a greater sinner in God’s eyes than is a homosexual, for I would wager you have lied or sworn in your day.
I am not weighing in on the debate about whether or not same-sex marriage should exist. I don’t have to. Like every other long fought social issue such as slavery, segregation, abortion or womens’ rights to vote, it will one day be a reality. Protesters may be able to slow down the process, but it will happen in time just as sure as the sun will rise tomorrow.
Just as people will never lose their 2nd Amendment rights and Roe v. Wade will never be overturned despite protests on both issues, the tide is turning and gay marriage will happen in our lifetime.
Exit polls in states where it has been on a ballot, whether it passed or not, show that young people are overwhelmingly in favor of or indifferent to it. They see love as love and do not judge it. It is the older generations who most object.
No, my point in all of this is that the naysayers need to get a new argument. The Bible-Leviticus one just doesn’t hold up under scrutiny.
Indeed, there is no real biblical stand on homosexuality one way or another if you eliminate Leviticus from the equation. And, again, you must eliminate it, Mr. Bradell. Unless you support each and every tenant of that book with equal fervor, you forever forfeit the right to invoke it selectively when it suits you.
When an individual promotes one item from the Leviticus laundry list without giving the others equal weight, he loses all credibility and his argument is rendered null and void.
So, oppose same-sex marriage on social grounds if you despise the notion.
But don’t have the arrogance to debate God’s stand on it unless you intend to take on every one of the issues at the top of this column with the same level of passion and commitment.