Religious Right and Gays - We are all "SIN+".

As a member of the religious right, I have watched with dismay this battle between the gay community and the religious right. I am glad that we live in a free society. In other societies that are “winner take all”, the looser of the debates might be lined up and shot. My hope is that over the years there will be a better understanding between our two communities.

I am a Christian, and the founder of my faith Jesus Christ said that before I take the speck out of your eye I need to take the log out of my own. So in this editorial, I would like to discus the “Logs in the Eyes of the Religious right”.

I. The log of hypocrisy.

The Bible teaches that all sex outside of marriage is sinful. The bible also teaches that marriage is to be between a man and a woman. The bible does not make that much of a distinction between the various varieties of human relationships that are consensual. Jesus even said at one time that to lust after a young woman is the same as adultery. What this means is that according to Christian teaching, none of us is perfect, and we have all "sinned".

The hypocrisy of the Christian right is portraying that "gay" sin is worse than "straight" sin. To be blunt, gay couples are made to feel not welcome in church, but straight couples who are "shacking up" can sit in the front pew. This is wrong and it stems from bigotry and self righteousness.

It is also a misunderstanding of what sin is. Sin is not only a list of does and don'ts. Sin is like HIV, it is a condition. All of us are SIN+.

II. The log of confusing church and state.

The log of hypocrisy unfortunately gives birth to discrimination. It goes beyond theology into civil rights. It allows for discrimination in housing, in the job market, etc. I can imagine it touches possibly every area of a gay person's life. Religious belief, must be separated from civil rights. Where the religious right is wrong is when who a person sleeps with (legally), undermines a person's ability to have any of the protections of the constitution. The "Bible" of our society is the U.S. Constitution.

III. The log of "wrestling against flesh and blood."

Scripture is very clear that we are to fight against principalities and powers and not against flesh and blood. (Eph. 6:12) This teaching comes across in other forms such as "love the sinner, hate the sin." This is an ok saying. But the evidence of "love the sinner" must be made by the object. What I mean is that it is the gay community that needs to say that they "feel" they are loved by the religiour right. The evidence that of the "love" of the religious right, needs to be clear and convincing to the rest of the world, otherwise it is just self promotion and "preaching to the choir". The truth of the matter is that the gay community would much more talk of hatred from the religious right than love. This is evidence of hypocrisy because Christ was surrounded by people who the religious institutions rejected. Something is clearly wrong when we in the religious right repel the same people that Jesus attracted.

In a little over a year, I will be going over the big 50. I seriously think even if I live a long life, I will not see the end of this political battle between the Religious Right and the Gay community. Forums like this can be a step in the right direction. Hopefully I can use the second half of my life to help correct some of these wrongs. The founder of my faith tried that, and they crucified him.

Posted by Craig Holmes at April 28, 2004 2:18 PM