Before I begin this post, I would like to make a few things perfectly clear to everybody reading this. I am NOT a devout Christian. I question religion on a daily basis. While I still have some feint belief there might be something beyond the explanation of science, I cannot devote myself to this ideology without more understanding. I have my reasons for my skepticism that is founded through the beliefs of Christianity and if you wish to address those with me in a private matter I will be happy to discuss them with you. However, that is not what this post is about. This post is about my personal opinions on the current SCOTUS ruling for marriage equality in these United States.
If you’ve been hiding under a rock for the past 15 hours, or avoiding Facebook because you haven’t watched the season finale of Game of Thrones yet, the Supreme Court of the United States ruled 5-4 in favor of equal marriage rights in all 50 states; deeming the recent ban in Kentucky unconstitutional. This was a huge leap for American equality and freedom. As I scan through my Facebook news feed I have come across a few posts that think differently and some even state that it is a huge step towards destroying American freedom. While I don’t want to point any fingers directly, I can’t help but notice most of these posts are coming from people who claim to be devout Christians and live by the word of God/Jesus.
Okay, yes; Leviticus 18:22 states that if a man lies with another man as he would with a woman it is an abomination in the eyes of God. Pretty clear that the Bible straightforwardly condemns homosexuality. In fact, the entire chapter 18 of Leviticus is set aside to outline who or what one cannot have sex with (including prostitutes and animals). I cannot argue that point because there is no counterpoint. It is right there. In fact, I will give you the exact quote from the New International Version Bible which I happen to have right here:
Do not lie with a man as one lies with a woman; that is detestable.
I’ll go a little further and give you 1 Corinthians 6:9-10
Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.
Again, pretty straightforward. God does not tolerate homosexuality and will not allow any such person who practices such into His kingdom. However, if you read on in Leviticus you’ll see that chapter 20, verse 13 goes to the extreme:
If a man lies with a man as one lies with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable. They must be put to death; their blood will be on their own heads.
Whoa! That’s a bit harsh. So who is going to put them to death? Will it be the devout Christian who lives his or her life by the word of God/Jesus? John 8:7 states:
When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, ‘If any one of you is without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone at her.’
This was Jesus speaking to a group of teachers outside a temple at the Mount of Olives who had brought a woman to him who had committed adultery. However, upon doing some research I have discovered that the passages of John 7:53, 8:1-11 were not originally in early Greek manuscripts and were a later Western-text insertion based on vague Latin translations which could have several different meanings. So let’s not use that as an example. Instead, let’s focus on Matthew 7:1-5:
Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you. Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your bother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eyes? How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eyes,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? you hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.
Now we are getting somewhere. Don’t judge people unless you wish to be judged yourself. Still unclear of who is doing the judging, but we’ll get to that in a moment. A Christian may argue that if they are living by the word of God, they have the authority to “remove the speck from [their] brother’s eye.” I disagree. Are you a devout Christian and not looked at a new car, thinking to yourself how you would enjoy taking it on a test drive? Or how about a new 4K television set and wondered what it would look like on your wall? In my opinion both of these cases are lust (and possibly greed since the money spent on such items could have been given to others – but I’m not passing judgement since I follow the same practices; sitting here writing a blog on a computer I spent hundreds of dollars building for my personal use). What about the whole “love thy neighbor” thing? Exodus 20:16 actually reads:
You shall not give false testimony against your neighbor.
And is further explained in Exodus 23:1-9, which I will not quote here, but paraphrase in saying that it explains how one should not side with the many for what may seem like justice and giving untrue witness. Absolutely nothing about loving your neighbor, just don’t go about slandering them because others are doing the same. Clearly you don’t have to love your neighbor’s decision to be homosexual, and you are fair and just in stating that such lifestyle is a sin in the eyes of God. But do not feel the need to judge them based on what they do or have done. John 12:47-48 tells us who will be doing all the judging:
As for the person who hears my words but does not keep them, I do no judge him. For I did not come to judge the world, but to save it. There is a judge for the one who rejects me and does not accept my words; that very word which I spoke will condemn him at the last day.
Someone who sins will be judged on the last day by the one “person” who may clearly pass judgement. If you do pass judgement, you too are in favor of sin. At least this is how I am understanding the passages of the Bible. As I stated before, I am not a devout Christian and do not have the book memorized. In fact, I had to look up where such passages were located in order to quote them in this blog. What I do know, and often see, is that Bible passages are often single or altered verses taken without other context and repeated over and over with no regard to the other 1,000 pages in the book.
As for today’s SCOTUS ruling, some of my devout Christian friends have laid claim to this being the first steps to openly attack religion, stating that such freedom for others only lays the foundation for them to lay slander against Christianity. Bigots, naysayers, and “homophobic propagators” are the biggest concerns that these Christians fear they will be called for passing judgement onto those who act accordingly to their hearts and the laws of the land. Yes, the United States was founded as a God-fearing country but it was not founded on the set beliefs of Christianity. I’m not even going to side with one side or the other on this matter. I won’t call either side a bigot or naysayer. Instead I will call both sides ignorant.
No, I did not just call you stupid. I simply stated that you do not know. Just like I am ignorant to the existence of a higher power because I lack physical or tangible evidence, you – the devout Christian and offended LGBT member – are ignorant to all the information. If you are homosexual and a Christian person says you are destroying America with your sinful ways, do not call them a bigot or hatemonger. They do not know that they too will be judged, according to the book they swear to live their lives by, by doing such. For those of you who are Christian and a homosexual person offends your beliefs in the Bible and God, do not pass judgement on them for their sins because according to your book it is not your place to do so.
In closing I’m going to say this: God created man (and woman alike) then set upon him (and her) the choice to follow His word or not. If you do, good for you; you get a cookie. If you don’t, well some people might not like you but they have no room to judge you unless they have a life with no other sin; you also get a cookie. You don’t have to like something to be fair about it. Obviously 4 people didn’t like today’s ruling, but they are going to uphold it for the better of everybody. Now I take my leave to go look at digital cameras on Amazon that I cannot afford and wish I could own one with my hard-earned money that belongs to me and me alone because I obviously suck at writing worthwhile trending topic posts.ua