This is an article that should have been written a LOOOOOOOOOOONG time ago, but sadly I've never gotten around to it until today. The reason being, there are already SEVERAL people more capable to handle this...rambling (I refuse to call it an argument) more aptly than I can. Furthermore seeing as how this really isn't an argument it's hardly worth discussing. The unfortunate reality is that there are people (short-sighted, shallow thinking people) who think that not only is this an argument but it's a compelling argument.
So now we come to our old pals Mr. John Fugelsang & The Young Turks, Mr. Fugelsang had a discussion with Bill Donohue of The Catholic League (not the best guy to talk to unfortunately) and The Young Turks commented. I'm of the mind set now where I'd like to challenge Mr. Fugelsang to a debate on scripture since by his own words he claims to be an "admirer of Jesus", any TRUE admirer of Jesus wouldn't have such a foolish perspective on scripture...I mean I expect this from The Young Turks but from you Mr. Fugelsang...from you a self-proclaim "admirer of Jesus" (slight divorce joke at Jesus' expense, blasphemy much?)...I hope you understand you're going to face judgment for that. OF COURSE YOU DON'T...let's get started.
So Mr. Fugelsang's "argument" is set up like this, Christian claim that The Bible is against Homosexuality and sadly instead of citing Romans 1, Matthew 19:1-6 and a whole slew of other scriptures, Mr. Donohue unfortunately falls into Mr. Fugelsang's trap and cites Leviticus and Deuteronomy, leading Mr. Fugelsang to say "Oh but don't you eat bacon? Is your clothes made of two kinds of fibers? You know those are no-nos in The Bible but you're doing them, so you're breaking The Laws in Leviticus and you're a hypocrite because what you're doing is no different than (in Mr. Fugelsang's words) what George Michael is doing."
At this point I didn't know whether to laugh, cry or get very angry so I decided to do all 3. I laughed because the argumentation put forth IS ridiculous (and I'll explain why very soon), I cried because there are better people than Bill Donohue who can answer Mr. Fugelsang's "argumentation" who AREN'T being asked and the fact that I can answer Mr. Fugelsang VERY easily. And I got angry because My God is once again being mocked by a man who claims to admire Him, and my anger has lead me to write this article so that it may edify Christ and His truth, rebuke the unbeliever and provide answers to those who need them.
However before we being I'd like to address a few comments. Marriage for the sake of love isn't a strange concept, however in the culture at the time, Israel didn't really do the whole dating thing. Most marriages were arranged. Long story short, whatever the cultural reasons for getting married (arranged, obligation, or emotional) marriage should be done within the confines of one unrelated, of legal age man and woman.
As far as the production of children goes, that is indeed one of the primary benefits of marriage as it provide a child with what they need from both parents.However for sterile and old couples who seek to get married, their marriages are a reflection of Christ and the church, where even if children aren't produced they are still edifying God by engaging sexuality in the confines He commanded. Furthermore for sterile couples who adopt children, Christ is edified as adoption is a symbolic gesture to represent the adoption of gentiles within the body of Christ. Furthermore as I've said before, a Boy learns from his Mother what a woman is and from his Father how to treat a woman, and how a woman is to treat him. A Girl learns from her Father what a man is and from her Mother how to treat a man. These results can't be achieved (as God would want them) if both parties are of the same sex. Marriage is a symbolic union, symbolic of Christ and His church, and the VERY foundations of humanity (MALE & FEMALE).
Let's put Mr. Fugelsang in context. Mr. Fugelsang's "argument" centers around Deut 14:8, Lev 19:19 and Lev 11:7-8;
" 8 The pig, because it divides the hoof but does not chew the cud, it is unclean for you. You shall not eat any of their flesh nor touch their carcasses." -Deut 14:8
" 19 ‘You are to keep My statutes. You shall not breed together two kinds of your cattle; you shall not sow your field with two kinds of seed, nor wear a garment upon you of two kinds of material mixed together."- Levi 19:19
" 7 and the pig, for though it divides the hoof, thus making a split hoof, it does not chew cud, it is unclean to you. 8 You shall not eat of their flesh nor touch their carcasses; they are unclean to you." - Levi 11:7-8
There is no denying that The Bible does indeed prohibit the consumption of swine and the wearing garments woven with different fibers and a few other things, however they are NOT parallel laws as Cenk would suggest since Lev 18 deals entirely with Sexual Immortality and Lev 11 deals entirely with Unclean Foods, it's not like you're going to find "Thou shall not lie with a man as you lay with a woman" and right underneath that "Thous shall not consume swine", just wanted to point that out. Anyway, as I said before there is no denying that The Bible does indeed prohibit those things, I won't deny that but rather ask why. Is God saying there is something inherently wrong with pigs and clothes made of other fibers or is there something else going on?
Let's flashback to that time period and look at where The nation of Israel is. They had just come out of Egypt and are entering into the promised land of Canaan. Israel was surrounded by Pagan nations and God dropped a decree on them;
"25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her," -Eph 5:25
;and Adam and Eve as the blue print for a marriage spiritually and physically;
"4 And He answered and said, “Have you not read that He who created them from the beginning made them male and female, 5 and said, ‘For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’?"- Matt 19:4-5
"14 After He called the crowd to Him again, He began saying to them, “Listen to Me, all of you, and understand: 15 there is nothing outside the man which can defile him if it goes into him; but the things which proceed out of the man are what defile the man. 16 [If anyone has ears to hear, let him hear.”]17 When he had left the crowd and entered the house, His disciples questioned Him about the parable. 18 And He *said to them, “Are you so lacking in understanding also? Do you not understand that whatever goes into the man from outside cannot defile him, 19 because it does not go into his heart, but into his stomach, and is eliminated?” (Thus He declared all foods clean.)" - Mark 7:14-19
Interesting, Jesus is saying that ALL FOODS are clean. But let's hear what God has to say about it, moving on Acts 10:9-16;
"9 On the next day, as they were on their way and approaching the city, Peter went up on the housetop about the sixth hour to pray. 10 But he became hungry and was desiring to eat; but while they were making preparations, he fell into a trance; 11 and he *saw the sky opened up, and an object like a great sheet coming down, lowered by four corners to the ground, 12 and there were in it all kinds of four-footed animals and crawling creatures of the earth and birds of the air. 13 A voice came to him, “Get up, Peter, kill and eat!” 14 But Peter said, “By no means, Lord, for I have never eaten anything unholy and unclean.” 15 Again a voice came to him a second time, “What God has cleansed, no longer consider unholy.” 16 This happened three times, and immediately the object was taken up into the sky."- Acts 10:9-16
God HIMSELF told Peter to go, kill and eat, and said Himself "What God has cleansed, no longer consider unholy"...God considered (past tense) bacon unholy...so I guess that means Peter could have helped himself to some bacon and nice ol' bucket of shrimp too. Jesus set The Apostles to be examples and teachers of the church, SURELY God wouldn't tell an Apostle to do something sinful. Jesus declared all foods clean and God backs Him up and tells Peter to have at whatever animals he wants and eat. Oddly enough Mr. Fugelsang, if we just continued on in Mark 7, we'll find something VERY interesting, check it out Mark 7:19-23;
"19 because it does not go into his heart, but into his stomach, and is eliminated?” (Thus He declared all foods clean.) 20 And He was saying, “That which proceeds out of the man, that is what defiles the man. 21 For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed the evil thoughts, fornications, thefts, murders, adulteries, 22 deeds of coveting and wickedness, as well as deceit, sensuality, envy, slander, pride and foolishness. 23 All these evil things proceed from within and defile the man.” - Mark 7:19-23
Fornications, adultery, sensuality...those all sound pretty sexual to me, and are pretty much focused on morality. Also Jesus addresses the HEART of a man, or in our language "a man's desires". Murder, theft, deceit, envy, slander, pride, all of these things are actions committed with malice and are echoes from The Old Testament's prohibitions on murder, thievery, lying, slander, ect. ect. But when it comes to bacon, Jesus made no moral judgment about it. Jesus said the food goes into the stomach and it's gone. And Jesus is right. He's drawing a moral parallel between that which is done or said and that which is consumed. Jesus is saying they aren't the same because one is eliminated and one remains within. Furthermore God declared all foods cleans and told Peter to eat whatever animal he wanted. However did God give such a decree to sexual immorality? No, let's look at Romans 1:24-32;
"24 Therefore God gave them over in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, so that their bodies would be dishonored among them. 25 For they exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen. 26 For this reason God gave them over to degrading passions; for their women exchanged the natural function for that which is unnatural, 27 and in the same way also the men abandoned the natural function of the woman and burned in their desire toward one another, men with men committing indecent acts and receiving in their own persons the due penalty of their error. 28 And just as they did not see fit to acknowledge God any longer, God gave them over to a depraved mind, to do those things which are not proper, 29 being filled with all unrighteousness, wickedness, greed, evil; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, malice; they are gossips, 30 slanderers, haters of God, insolent, arrogant, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, 31 without understanding, untrustworthy, unloving, unmerciful; 32 and although they know the ordinance of God, that those who practice such things are worthy of death, they not only do the same, but also give hearty approval to those who practice them." - Romans 1:24-32
Look at this, Paul (an apostle of God) is using the SAME LANGUAGE Jesus did in Mark, envy, murder, deceit, and lusts, not to mention idolatry. What isn't mentioned in this? Three guesses and the first two don't count...it's FOOD! Paul does not mention FOOD AT ALL HERE! Nor does he mention anything about garments woven of different fibers, planting more than one seed in your field...you get the idea. The point I'm trying to make here is that there are laws that were only specific to The Nation Of Israel and there are laws that go for everyone. A perfect example of this would be "Thou shall not commit murder" goes for everyone, however resting on the Sabbath would only apply to The Israelites at that time. Therefore there's a difference between moral laws, ceremonial laws, cleanliness laws and their respective penalties. But notice, none of the ceremonial laws or the cleanliness laws are echoed in The New Testament, only the moral laws.
However there are modern day applications we can make of certain laws such as sacrificing children to Molech, well Molech worshipers are very much in the minority these days, but the point of the law is idolatry, and same goes for divination (seeking guidance from beings other than God) the utilization of powers outside of God, self-worship and so on, all of these are forms of idolatry, which God has never condoned. In The New Testament you can see these laws echoed but not the penalties. Israel at the time was under a theocracy and therefore suffered penalties for blasphemy and other sins. And while those things such as blasphemy and idolatry and divination aren't illegal by law, they are still sinful.
At any rate John Fugelsang and people like him would have you believe that Jesus was A-Okay with Homosexuality...
...despite the fact that Jesus pointed out several times that He was against ANY form of sexual activity outside of one man and one woman unrelated and married. So what about Porn stars ? They have TONS of sex outside of marriage, with multiple people sometimes (more often than not) and engage in homosexuality, they earn a living doing it, would Jesus be okay with that? Well since pornography is glamorized prostitution (sex for money), we should look at how Jesus treated a certain prostitute;
"6 They were saying this, testing Him, so that they might have grounds for accusing Him. But Jesus stooped down and with His finger wrote on the ground. 7 But when they persisted in asking Him, He straightened up, and said to them, “He who is without sin among you, let him be the first to throw a stone at her.” 8 Again He stooped down and wrote on the ground. 9 When they heard it, they began to go out one by one, beginning with the older ones, and He was left alone, and the woman, where she was, in the center of the court. 10 Straightening up, Jesus said to her, “Woman, where are they? Did no one condemn you?” 11 She said, “No one, Lord.” And Jesus said, “I do not condemn you, either. Go. From now on sin no more.” - John 8:6-11
Interesting, what did Jesus say to the prostitute, did He tell her it's okay for her to be a prostitute? Did Jesus shame the crowd for judging her, not exactly. He compelled the crowd (once again) to examine what The Law was for and what it was meant to teach them (of their own sins and the fact that they are all in violation). But Jesus doesn't stop there, what does He say to the prostitute? Go and from now on don't get caught ? No, that ain't right. Go and use protection? No, Jesus said Go and from now on SIN NO MORE! Jesus didn't condemn the woman but He did judge her and He saw sin and told her NOT to do it anymore.
So this fictional Jesus who is all thumbs when it comes to homosexuality or ANY form of immorality doesn't exist. And as I've said before, homosexuality is NO different from any other sin that I and many other Christians have committed HOWEVER the MAJOR difference is that WE ARE NOT TELLING GOD THAT HE'S WRONG! If you are a homosexual and you're reading this PLEASE understand God loves you, and all He wants from you is to repent of your actions and follow His son Jesus to salvation. I'm not here to tell you you're an evil person ect. ect. I'm here to bring the life saving love of Christ. ALL Christians struggle with their sins, ALL Christians do, but we struggle with them because THEY ARE WRONG and BECAUSE WE AGREE WITH GOD! You can't agree with God that Christ is Lord but disagree with Him on what He deems morally unacceptable.
The Bible is the book that tells you Christ is Lord, and The Bible is same book that tells you homosexuality is sinful. How can you affirm one and deny the other? These are the VERY WORDS AND TEACHINGS OF CHRIST HIMSELF! How are you going to affirm He is Lord and yet deny His very words? Makes no sense. I'll leave you with that as the heat is really getting to me. peace in Christ all.