Last night we attended a lecture by author Jay Michaelson, about his book God vs. Gay? The Religious Case for Equality.
It was fascinating. It also reinforced some of my own beliefs, mainly that the bible an be interpreted in many, many ways. The same verses may have different meanings depending on context, historical events, translations or the reader's own agenda and can we please stop beating people over the head with them.
That got me thinking. What are my views on all of this?
1.) Most of the absolutes that we take for granted in the Bible, like "thou shall not kill," aren't that absolute. War and justifiable homicide are mentioned right after those commandments are laid out. We know that the bible contradicts itself all over the place.
2.) The bible is a translation of a translation. It's also an anthology. It's historical fact that King James bible wasn't translated to be correct. "James gave the translators instructions intended to guarantee that the new version would conform to the ecclesiology and reflect the episcopal structure of the Church of England and its belief in an ordained clergy." The translation had an agenda.
3.) I can't accept a God that would want gay people to live without fuffilling committed relationships. I won't accept it. I don't want anything to do with a God that's more like a strict school Headmaster than a loving parent.
4.) And Jesus. You know, Jesus said not one thing about gay people. As Eddie Izzard said: “‘Cause Jesus I do think did exist, and he was, I think, a guy who had interesting ideas in the Gandhi-type area, in the Nelson Mandela-type area, you know, relaxed and groovy..."
Do I consider myself a Christian? Not really. I refuse to associate myself with the vocal group. The ones that get all the press. I believe in a higher power. I believe that Jesus had some really good ideas. I also believe that too few are living up to them. The two I wish everyone would live up to:
Matthew 7:12 "Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them: for this is the law and the prophets."
I know I've said this before. But I think it bears repeating.