Wednesday, November 23, 2011

FIRST, THE GOOD NEWS - Chapter Thirteen

Chapter Thirteen

"Momma Always Said, Stupid is as Stupid Does"

"Genius may have its limitations, but stupidity is not thus handicapped."
- Elbert Hubbard

God made Adam and Eve...not Adam and Steve!

If I've heard it said once, I've heard it a thousand times or more.

We discussed Adam and Eve a little in the last chapter (and nothing about sexual orientation issues, in case you didn't notice), but in this chapter I will need to discuss sexual orientation a lot.

Believe me, this isn't really what I want to be talking about, but I have to address some of the nonsense that has been thrown at me, and answer some of the questions about being gay and Christian that I've gotten over and over again from straight people, especially in the last year. This being the 21st century and all, I shouldn't even have to deal with this stuff, but you gotta do what you gotta do...

So bear with me.

OK...first, let me say, once and for all, that HETEROSEXUALITY IS ALIVE AND WELL!

I make this simple and obvious statement for the sake of the many people who, for whatever reason, write, e-mail, call, text, or post on this and my other blog to remind me that God created Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve.

I’m not really sure what this tired and overused phrase is supposed to mean, really, or what it is supposed to accomplish. I guess it is said to me and to people like me for the purpose of possibly snapping my mind back to the reality of the creation story of Genesis 1, and to hopefully change my sexual orientation…as if a statement like this could alter my thinking about the long-held truth of my life, or my beliefs about human sexuality.

But I’ve heard the Adam and Steve thing said so much, not just to me, personally, but also publicly from pulpits across America over the years and in television debates over gay rights issues, that I have to deal with it, and make some observations that will hopefully bring a little clarity on the subject (and maybe stop people from saying it to me so often…).

And since I mentioned the preachers, let me interject here that there is a dark, manipulative side to the preaching ministry that most laymen are unaware of. By that I mean that if a preacher needs to stir a crowd and get a certain reaction from his audience, there are certain phrases and buzzwords...a sort of verbal bag of tricks, if you will...that can really work a crowd if you know how to use them.

The theme of homophobia is most times a sure thing when you want to get a rise out of a congregation of mainstream Bible-believers these days, and the "Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve" thing is the catch-phrase that seems to be the most memorable and effective.

It's been my experience that, typically, when a ministry puts an excessive amount of emphasis on "Family Values" instead of being Christ-centered in its message, you can just expect gay-bashing to be central in the preaching.

And when a fundamentalist preacher gets really wound up and starts yelling about the end of the world and the collapse of civilization as we know it, you can pretty much predict that somewhere in his sermon (rant) the gays are going to get blasted more than any other group. They'll get blamed for every earthquake and hurricane that's recently happened with the usual references to the wrath of God, then you'll generally hear some historically-inaccurate information about the founding fathers, finished off with a menacing threat that the gays are out to get your children.

Indeed, if a fundamentalist man of the cloth wants to work his narrow-minded, misinformed crowd into a frenzy, "Adam and Steve" are pretty much a sure thing for him, and a nearly sure-fire way for him to gain supporters.

Then you'll usually hear him make a pitch for a big offering, with something said like "Give to this ministry so that we can keep the perverted homosexuals in their place and protect your children from them!"

And it usually works.

Fear sells.

When a preacher uses the Bible to make gay people seem evil and threatening to an assembly of ignorant homophobes who are convinced that they are the "real Christians", it's like throwing meat to hungry dogs.

The haters just eat that stuff up.

But please allow me to say some things about all this...I can't make you agree with me about it, I can only say what I truly believe, and let you judge it for yourself.

But, if you can, try to hear me out without prejudice.

OK...let me reiterate that heterosexuality is not going anywhere.

Procreation is not in any danger.

The overwhelming majority of the world is straight, and always will be, and men and women will always continue to date, fall in love, get married, have sex, have babies, and do whatever else straight people do.

Despite what you regularly hear from the Christian right, the world is not turning gay.

There is no "gay agenda" to fear in the sense that gay people are trying to recruit heterosexuals to turn to a "gay lifestyle" (which also doesn‘t exist, by the way, but more about that later).

Nobody "turns" gay.

It’s just not possible.

And, yes, I've read the first Chapter of Romans (see Chapter Eleven) where Paul talks about men leaving women for men and women leaving men for women (the only hint at a reference to lesbians in the Bible, by the way), and all I can tell you is that whatever pagan temple sex rituals for worship that he was talking about there has absolutely no relevance to my life, whatsoever, nor to the life of any gay person alive today that I know.

I think I've already said this in a previous chapter, but for the sake of point I will repeat that homosexual experimentation between heterosexuals does not make those heterosexuals gay. For example, if two straight men in prison end up being sexual with each other in some way, they're not gay...they may be libidinous or desperate or lonely or whatever, but they're not gay. Disagree with me if you need to, but I'm telling you that's the truth.

There is about the same percentage of the world’s population that is homosexual as there has always been (10 %), you just hear about it more now than you did in the past for many reasons, and so it may appear that something strange or unprecedented is happening in society that isn’t necessarily happening.

Gay people, as a rule, are not anti-family, or even anti-heterosexual, for that matter…they are not against the idea of Adam and Eve and what they represent.

Every gay person knows that, were it not for heterosexual procreation, none of us, straight or gay, would be here! Straight people will always be straight, and gay people will always be gay.


I know that that statement usually opens up endless arguments on the subject, but so be it.

Sooner or later, people are just going to have to realize and admit that no one is making this stuff up. If someone says they’re gay…they’re gay! They didn’t choose their orientation any more than any heterosexual chose his or her orientation.

Why would a man like me say it if it weren't true?

I would have absolutely nothing to gain by saying it, especially at this stage in my I said before, I wasn't outed by anyone, didn't have a scandal, and at the time of this writing am not even in a relationship and am celibate...and I'm still gay.

Why would a teen-ager make it up about himself or herself  just to be bullied or ostracized...or worse, to have a reason to commit suicide?

The only "gay agenda" that gay people may have is their desire to have the same civil rights that every other citizen has.

Gay people are not after your children, no matter what the fear preachers tell you to make you afraid for their own control purposes. You should protect your children from pedophiles, and pedophilia and homosexuality are two COMPLETELY different things.

The overwhelming majority of child molesters are straight men who desire little girls, and the average gay person is just as horrified and disgusted by child molestation as any heterosexual, American citizen, or Christian. And please don't send me statistics and horror stories about Catholic priests and altar boys...I'm telling you, those men are in another category, entirely.

So relax...Adam and Eve and heterosexuality rock, and gay people don't want to destroy the family or the country or civilization as we know it...and they're not after your children. They just want to be able to live their authentic lives the way that you and everyone else want to live theirs.

So I hope the next time you hear a guy on Christian TV say "God didn't make Adam and Steve" you'll think about these words and realize how insensitive, idiotic, and out of touch with reality he sounds.

Now to answer some often-asked questions...

to be continued...


Anonymous said...



dave in seattle

Anonymous said...

Pam McIntyre said...

Well said, hate sells...for sure!

Anonymous said...

Pamm Wince said...

Happy Thanksgiving Bishop! I just did a speed read of the blog and I have to say, "If that ain't laying it on the table, I don't know what is!" You just left a few ppl, that were in denial,"Gump Faced" I know I'm wrong for laughing but I think its funny how ppl use the power of their finger to unfriend, when the real power is in opening a closed mind...;-)

Anonymous said...

Wesley Wes Thomas said...

Good chapter, so far. Thanks for all you do.

Anonymous said...

K. K. said...

Read your last blog Chapter 13. Very honest and and nicely written. I have tried to friend you a few times guess my timing is bad. I don't understand what its like to be gay frankly because I am not. But I do know that coming out is not something taken lightly by the person doing it. You get hurt and judged very harshly. I knew my brother was gay when we were children. He came out when he was 18 and during the 80's when AIDS was a very scary thing. I wish I could say I was more accepting at the time but I was scared but I always loved him. I didn't understand it but I didnt judge him. I still dont understand it but I dont understand a lot of things. I always told him that God loved him but he was chastised at a church that he was tricked into attending and is very against anything to do with God. Any ideas on how I can witness God's love to him without coming off as a judgemental religious idiot? Just for the record... I am a person of faith and think religion is a bunch of crap...

Anonymous said...

Galen Burrow Colbert said...

After reading that chapter, all's I can say is "TESTIFY, brother!" And that's coming from ME, a staid Methodist boy not prone to outbursts. :)

Anonymous said...

Timothy Speek said...

Looking forward to the rest!

Anonymous said...

Angela Dickey said...

Well said!=)

Anonymous said...

Karen Kuhn said...

Thanks, Bishop for taking a stand and proclaiming the love of Christ for EVERYONE. Some day the eyes of the 'blind' will be opened. And so we press on toward the mark..

Erik said...

Bishop, fear that people have of their own lives drives their hatred of those who are different. It seems after so many millennia, humans would be over it. We have 10’s of thousands or more of specific lives that have been recorded of those once oppressed, who become oppressors. In regard to America, we can easily see the initial revolutionaries, later groups of Europeans, different faith groups, African Americans, Asians, Women, Homosexuals, and others. There are a variety of sub groups in these groups. Often members of oppressed groups use a base they generate to fight for their rights, find another group to oppress. That is so strange.

Some of the groups that rage against homosexuality (religious, racial, cultural, ethnic) experienced their own extreme oppression relatively recently, and commemorate their ‘freedom’ from such oppression themselves. I put quotes around the word freedom in the previous sentence, because anyone that oppresses, that believes any other human being is less of a human because of their identity, is in more bondage than when they were previously. This is because they are under the delusion they are ‘free’ when they are the oppressors.

Repentance from this fear comes from the Goodness of God. It has already been, we are seeing an aspect of the manifestation in our time line. God loves each of us, and has made that the foundation of everything in Creation, and especially every person. Each of us knows this, and you are bringing this to the remembrance of many.