Slog Music

Music, Nightlife,
and Drinks

Friday, June 7, 2013

Anti-Gay Activists Who Point to the Bible to Justify Opposition to Same-Sex Marriage...

Posted by on Fri, Jun 7, 2013 at 8:13 AM

...are biblically illiterate.

The debate about marriage equality often centers, however discretely, on an appeal to the Bible. Unfortunately, such appeals often reflect a lack of biblical literacy on the part of those who use that complex collection of texts as an authority to enact modern social policy. As academic biblical scholars, we wish to clarify that the biblical texts do not support the frequent claim that marriage between one man and one woman is the only type of marriage deemed acceptable by the Bible’s authors....

In fact, there were a variety of unions and family configurations that were permissible in the cultures that produced the Bible, and these ranged from monogamy (Titus 1:6) to those where rape victims were forced to marry their rapist (Deuteronomy 22:28-29) and to those Levirate marriage commands obligating a man to marry his brother’s widow regardless of the living brother’s marital status (Deuteronomy 25:5-10; Genesis 38; Ruth 2-4). Others insisted that celibacy was the preferred option (1 Corinthians 7:8; 28).

Although some may view Jesus’ interpretation of Genesis 2:24 in Matthew 19:3-10 as an endorsement of monogamy, Jesus and other Jewish interpreters conceded that there were also non-monogamous understandings of this passage in ancient Judaism, including those allowing divorce and remarriage.

In fact, during a discussion of marriage in Matthew 19:12, Jesus even encourages those who can to castrate themselves “for the kingdom” and live a life of celibacy.

The authors of the piece—which appeared in today's Des Moines Register—go on to point out that the bible forbids interracial marriage (Ezra 10:2-11), that Jesus encouraged his followers to castrate themselves (!) and live a life of celibacy (Matthew 19:12), and that Martin Luther (heretic!) could find nothing about men being limited to "one woman" in the Bible (“I confess that I cannot forbid a person to marry several wives, for it does not oppose the Holy Scriptures”).

Go read the whole thing.


Comments (25) RSS

Oldest First Unregistered On Registered On Add a comment
Dr. Z 1
I suspect many of don't actually read the bible outside of Sunday school. They just look up the cherry-picked verses they've been spoonfed by others, stripped of context a la Goldy. It would be interesting to see the results of a study on the actual bible reading habits of people who espouse bible-based homophobia.
Posted by Dr. Z on June 7, 2013 at 8:22 AM · Report this
lolorhone 2
The Kingdom of Heaven or the Possession of Your Balls? If those were the stakes widely known, I'm guessing there'd be a lot more Christians on the "allegorical" side of biblical theory.
Posted by lolorhone on June 7, 2013 at 8:31 AM · Report this
seatackled 3

Do you think they even read it in Sunday school--or in church, at least? Maybe they're just listening to what their pastor or their church lady tells them without even cracking open the text.
Posted by seatackled on June 7, 2013 at 8:36 AM · Report this
Urgutha Forka 4
Breaking News #1: Religious group's holy manual full of contradictions.

Breaking News #2: Religious groups ignore Breaking News #1.
Posted by Urgutha Forka on June 7, 2013 at 8:47 AM · Report this
Pope Peabrain 5
Most people don't follow the Ten Commandments. I doubt most people even know what they say. It doesn't allow the Sistene Chapel's depiction of god.
Posted by Pope Peabrain on June 7, 2013 at 8:49 AM · Report this
doesn't matter what the Bible says.

public policy is not based on the Bible.

not the fundy's version.

not Danny's version.

Danny, quit wasting our time pimping your interpretation of the Bible
Posted by Freedom From Danny's Religion on June 7, 2013 at 8:52 AM · Report this
blip 7
Also: shellfish and slavery. The end.
Posted by blip on June 7, 2013 at 8:54 AM · Report this
I can already hear the response from Christian conservatives. Basically, a variation on "But that's different!" When asked how it's different, the response will be "It just is."

It's hard to use logic to argue someone out of a position that they didn't reach by logic in the first place. But I applaud the authors of this simple, easy-to-understand article. I hope it sways a few of those in the middle.
Posted by NotYourStrawMan on June 7, 2013 at 8:55 AM · Report this
tomsj 9
What will these authors do, one wonders, when well-known biblical blowhard and bloviating bigot Robert A. J. Gagnon, Associate Professor of New Testament at the Pittsburgh Theological Seminary, begins to wring his hands and froth at the mouth at the very improbably notion that the Bible does not, in its every word, condemn unrepentant faggots to hell?

Should be good for a giggle.
Posted by tomsj on June 7, 2013 at 9:18 AM · Report this
Sargon Bighorn 10
In every example in the posting, it was a male/female or multiplicity there of. Not a Male/Male nor Female/Female union. The Christianists claim is only half incorrect. But they are in fact correct if they say the Bible does not mention marriages of people of the same gender. But of course we're not a nation with laws based on Biblical law or such. Fortunately. What people did 2000+ years ago was fine for them. Today it's not workable.
Posted by Sargon Bighorn on June 7, 2013 at 9:51 AM · Report this
Fortunate 11
This is all very interesting, but the simple truth is that it should have to matter to me what the hell that stupid book says. It should only have to matter to the people who voluntarily choose to live by it.

For the rest of us it should be completely irrelevant. If no one was trying to force it on everyone then it could say marriage is only between a man and a duck for all I care.

The real issue that people should be focused on isn't what a "correct" interpretation of the Bible on marriage is, but rather why the hell are we trying to force a certain form of marriage or relationships in general based on a thousands year old book of poorly written mythology?

I can have incredibly in depth and stupid conversations with my geek friends about who would win in a fight, the Hulk or Superman, but I don't try to force people to adhere to my interpretation of the true philosophy of comic books, and so most people don't care which I think would win in a fight.

The same should be true of people obsessed with living by the Bible. They can debate what it says all they want with each other, but it shouldn't spill out into the real world in a way that the rest of us should have to even notice, much less care.
Posted by Fortunate on June 7, 2013 at 10:05 AM · Report this
Pope Peabrain 12
@10 Two thousand years ago the Roman Empire was in full flower. Talk about excess! If two men married, I doubt they'd blink an eye. The emperor Hadrian was famously homosexual. His lover, Antinous, was celebrated after his death as a god. An entire religion was created to worship him because he sacrificed his life for the empire.
Posted by Pope Peabrain on June 7, 2013 at 10:06 AM · Report this
Jesus was a Jew who lived to the age of 33 without ever marrying and he lived with 12 men. Anyone with a lick of common sense can figure out that Jesus was gay and very likely his lover was Judas. Why else demonize Judas so much? The gay dude is performing miracles so you can't exactly say bad stuff about him, right? So hate on his partner and simply not say a thing in scripture either for or against homosexuality. When Jesus returns he's bringing his hot bf with him and there's gonna be real hell to pay for all the thumpers who hate queers. Imagine all the shock and awe on Judgement Day!
Posted by RainbowRidingJesusIsComing on June 7, 2013 at 10:08 AM · Report this
Reverse Polarity 14
Well this is all very interesting, but so what? It is completely impossible to argue linguistics or logic with true believers.
Posted by Reverse Polarity on June 7, 2013 at 10:12 AM · Report this
However, we can all agree that marrying either pork or shellfish is right out.
Posted by nullbull on June 7, 2013 at 10:57 AM · Report this
James6 16
"Go read the whole thing." Why? Who cares how a bunch of people interpret the desires of a fictional supernatural being in a disparate collection of fictional texts?
Posted by James6 on June 7, 2013 at 11:04 AM · Report this
So, if we're all created in God's image, why chop off the balls?
Posted by issa on June 7, 2013 at 11:09 AM · Report this
zivilisierter Wurm 18
@12: While male eros was common-place and accepted in certain contexts within ancient Rome, as far as I know men did not ever marry men. The idea of "homosexuality" as an identity defined by sexuality did not even exist. Sex with men was acceptable so long as it preserved a man's "vitus" ("virtue" or "manly spirit") - which is to say you could top but not bottom. By contrast, marriage was a legal institution to facilitate the lawful inheritance of property. Relationships which could not produce legal heirs did not factor in this.

Fun fact: In ancient Greece, sex with a man's oiled thighs was probably much more common than anal sex.
Posted by zivilisierter Wurm on June 7, 2013 at 11:10 AM · Report this
Oh! and, it seems like somebody might have had the temerity to say, "You first, Jesus!"
It would take balls to say that, I know, but....

Posted by issa on June 7, 2013 at 11:12 AM · Report this
very bad homo 20
Well whatever the Bible says, it still has nothing to do with my life. I'm not a Christian.
Posted by very bad homo on June 7, 2013 at 11:17 AM · Report this
Some Old Nobodaddy Logged In 21
16, 20, the reason being that many people in positions of power, people who make decisions which directly and indirectly affect your life, believe in this. It is also important to note that their belief system does not include "everyone has a right to their own beliefs." They do not view the existence of Jesus/Christ/God as a "belief" at all. It is fact for them, and everyone else can either accept this fact or live in fantasy.

So, when you're a sane person in an asylum, being run by insane people who view your sanity as a threat, it's good to know and understand their pathology. For your own survival.
Posted by Some Old Nobodaddy Logged In on June 7, 2013 at 1:14 PM · Report this
Nyckname 22
Have no fear, Dan; all of the misconceptions in the Bible will be eliminated when they're finished rewriting it.…
Posted by Nyckname on June 7, 2013 at 3:01 PM · Report this
Christians can read?!
Posted by montex on June 7, 2013 at 11:39 PM · Report this
Dirtclustit 24
it's so ridiculous when church authorities decide to use any passage from the Bible when they obviously failed to walk away with the actual meaning the words convey. It's almost as bad as not questioning every book of the New Testament written by "Paul" AKA "Saul of Tarsus" who was essentially a hired gun was very well paid job it was to mitigate all the "trouble" Jesus was causing, which was speaking the truth, which church authorities (who also held top govt. advisory positions during those times)

So after Jesus was executed for speaking the truth, suddenly good ol' boy Paul slithers into position, as he was he a religious awakening during his slander campaign which supposedly happened on road like Damascus. How is not questioned that this passive aggressive fuck from Tarsus ended up authoring over half of the "official" (read heavily edited) Testament of Jesus Christ.

Why is the fact that over half of the edited-for-public-consumption Bible with pet Saul's authoring hand not thought that it could possibly be more damage control by the leaders of the time?

Judas never got to have his revolution to overthrow the corrupt govt. And even if he had, the church officials who were the most threatened by Jesus's word of truth, they were not the "face" on the leading govt. So even if Rome had been overthrown, how many revolutions have ever ended in a clean sweep of all influential leadership positions ?

None, there is always an element of the same old same

Paul was a saboteur, and a mind fucker, he reminds of certain well known poly authors who believe their intellectual superiority is proved because people trust him, and his mind fucks are so obscure people don't catch they were just insulted by an idiot.
The same way when influential people are idiots damage the poly communities, Paul has damaged the Christian communities. However Paul has one possible alibi, we will never know if it was Paul of his editors who wrote chapters like eleven, from First Corinthians, but whoever did it, patting themselves on the back for writing about the length of a person's pubic hair that is considered acceptable for curch sponsored orgies,

we know who writes the passive aggressive shit and pits poly against the LGBT equal rights movements.

But I should stay on track here, these days the church officials have such gross levels of misinterpreting the Bible, that they honestly claim they can't see the difference between the paper marriage which is nothing but a way to enforce unlawful and UNCONSTITUTIONAL discrimination against LGBT Citizens of the United States of America, AND EVEN if this age old act of the church slithering in to impose it's bigoted views and our govt. is too stupid to see it's power being wielded, the Jesus was quoted as saying in the Bible, is a completely different situation then the "marriage" we are talking about today.

We are calling marriage the commitment of two people to remain together as partners at the head of a family. You officially commit to each other and your states counties file a record so that you can each carry the authority to make specific decisions regarding yourselves and the family you are raising (which also means they ARE members of the same family and insurance companies must allow such additions, but the premiums reflect the additional coverage it is not like the companies are forced to eat the cost of adding a spouse, person plus spouse policies pay accordingly) There are a few other benefits and privileges that the govt. recognizes, but the main ones are power of attorney, included on policies that deal with family members, and tax filings.

that's paper marriage

that's the way bigots and corrupt church officials slither into public life and enforce their unrecognized hatred of God's children when said children choose to commit to another to start a family with anything but the authorized sexual gender dictated by the church

If Jesus was here he'd explain it to you without using expletives, but this is me so of course I am going to add a big Fuck You to those who afflict damage to the innocent families and innocent lives of those who are just as much God's Children, and in many ways closer to God than your bigoted, fucked up hateful ways,

it doesn't take Einstein or a geneticist to understand that the language Jesus used was talking about complicated explanations of genetics during a time which The People did not have vocabulary to make such statements.

But true prophets, and God's living Son someone were able to do so. As the marriage the Jesus spake of, was not a man taking a women to be his lawfully wedded wife, in fact most people with an 8th grade understanding of science and genetics (which rules out Dawkins, sorry Dick, err Richard) read the words of Mathew and understand the marriage Jesus speaks of is a man and woman engaging in sex that results in pregnancy and the new being born as a man and woman in coming into one being as their Celestially wedded LIFE.

But the church and influential poly veaux writers shouldn't feel like complete idiots, and mistakes are made (all of US after all, are humans, and some are ignorant hateful mind fuckers) and even after Jesus tried to explain to deniers the world goes right back to it's ignorant ways.

So much so that even after nearly 250 years since The Good Word had to be introduced AGAIN to mankind, and this time JEFFERSON EVEN MADE MENTION OF THE SAME TREE from the first book of Genesis (which is a typo for the plural word of Genus) and all the parallels are there, the tree of liberty and the tree of life, the miracle that the founding fathers, the Ephraimers of the Constitution were obedient enough to do something crazy like revolt, and not quit, and to keep going even when it looked like to do so was suicide,


We should be begging for forgiveness, you should have tears in your eyes for all that has been done, for all that has been intentionally withheld from specific People, and those of US who stood by and witnessed it without saying FUCK YOU to those responsible, if you actively seek to enforce unlawful discrimination or even stand silent when you witness others doing it, you don't deserve the rights that many died for in order for US to have.

Fuck those assholes Dan and we stand behind you (err no pun intended, even if I did have a hard on I swear on the bible it is because of your sister, or cousin? I don't know, my point is, it's nothing sexual when I say fuck those assholes, I mean they are ignorant idiots, and you have our support every time you speak out against them)
Posted by Dirtclustit on June 9, 2013 at 2:15 PM · Report this
Jesus was angry at the Pharisees for being more about following God's rules than having a good relationship with the Lord. Jesus loved ALL. Jesus didn't judge like the Pharisees did, he just loved. The Pharisees did follow the Lord's commands just not so much forgiveness and love thy neighbor. So as human-beings we should all believe that Jesus was right to love, and forgive, that way we won't blow up on anyone who is something "we aren't" because we all are human beings.
Posted by ezmy on June 22, 2013 at 1:57 AM · Report this

Add a comment


Want great deals and a chance to win tickets to the best shows in Seattle? Join The Stranger Presents email list!

All contents © Index Newspapers, LLC
1535 11th Ave (Third Floor), Seattle, WA 98122
Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Use | Takedown Policy