Thank you for informing me as to mosaicism. in my post, I was thinking more of chimerism.
Thanks. Learned something new. Although I had heard of one twin being
absorbed by the birth “twin”.
And you have an issue with that? LOL.
Seriously, though, do you expect something different from apologists? Facts and data mean little to them if you write or say something that challenges their positions, which they imagine to be the church’s positions, which in turn they imagine to be sent straight from God. That’s why they’re apologists.
…And I look forward to reading your article when I get the time to do it right. Soon.
Since a chimera is one person who was once two people, do they have two souls?
And if they do, what are the repercussions of that?
If they don’t, what happened to the other soul? It if went away, which one went away? Where did it go?
Not really, but you know me, or should by now, an inveterate optimist. I do try to see the good in everyone, and if someone acts from their goodness, how could do anything other than to love LGBTQ+ people and want to understand them better. OTOH, I am always ready for the closed minds too.
Bryan – The continuing Mantra that is chanted in church, in our
Publications is — Come out! Be separate! Don’t touch!
So we SDAs are encouraged to maintain No Contact with the
community as much as possible.
So by Not volunteering with Services to the community that others
sponsor and engage in we don’t meet persons of various strata of
the Community. Those who Volunteer and those who are served.
Have the American Indians believed in 2-soul persons?
Be interesting to know. They were more Spiritual than us
I know they had a special thinking about what we term “gays”.
Well, here you go George,
Regarding normalizing same sex relations in marriage Ness says:
This essay covers a huge amount of territory. I would speak to many issues, but the last statement seems to be the point: Ness’s purpose here is to make same sex relations in marriage acceptable to SDAs. I will address this.
This is not correct. Although people may feel this way (disgust), the problem with same sex relations is that they are forbidden by the Bible. (Lev 18:22; 20:13; Rom. 1:18-32; 1Cor 6:6). Anyone acquainted with first century Judaism, and Christianity, would never argue that they would have accepted same sex behavior, especially in the light of Roman and Greek practice. Everyone knew what Paul was talking about.
Although Ness tries to lessen the force or the Levitical prohibitions, the New Testament writers clearly accepted the lists in Lev. 18 and 20 as normative for Christians. See for example, 1 Cor 5, Matt 14:4.
But let us look at the moral argument.
Ness has made certain assumptions here. I would say slightly biologically based at best. It is quite up in the air. But that is not the issue. If same sex relations are forbidden, this does not matter.
Ness completely ignores Gen 2. Kin are left and there is no mention of even children in this primary passage regarding God’s reason for marriage: “It is not good for man to be alone.” Ness shows his own bias here in arguing that marriage was for kinship bonds and progeny.
That ancient cultures felt this was most important is undeniable. But that was not God’s thinking. Besides that, if same sex relations are forbidden, what would be the point of marriage?
But God has given specific guidance regarding this: “Do not sleep with a man as you sleep with a woman.” Could it be any clearer? And there are no modifiers (…as long as they are consenting adults…etc.) The act itself is condemned.
So, the whole “moral” argument presented here, 1,2,3,4 etc. fails. God has spoken. Waffling about this, thinking you are doing some useful moral work is superfluous, and a muddying of the waters.
Ness presents himself as an objective scientist, only arguing from the facts. He has a clear bias. His outlook is one sided.
If you normalize same sex relations, you can say nothing to young people who want to live together. They have a hard enough time with the “raging hormones” as it is, and if you say this is OK, a thing forbidden in the strongest possible language, you have lost the battle before you even say a word.
But that is not the problem that most troubles me.
He is a teacher at PUC, and is influencing his students with his subtle ideas on this matter. It is not the church’s stated position, and yet he works for it. Seeds of doubt and confusion are being spread abroad. There will be an inevitable harvest.
History of Marriage.
In the Biblical days there was the “Union” of 2 people.
But NOT in the same context of “Marriage” that is in our time.
It was more of a “Blessing” activity.
There was no Court House to “record” marriages, births, and deaths.
It is only in the past few hundred years that marriages were performed
at the “court house” and recorded BEFORE going to the church to have
a Christian “wedding” in front of the Priest.
All that courthouse business was to maintain the succession of property
and wealth. And is still maintained here in the 21st Century.
In our present culture, “marriage” certificates are required for quite a number
of Financial Instruments.
This is WHY “marriage” certificates are Important for BOTH Heterosexual and
As the understanding of the Financial Needs are understood, State governments
are becoming more favorable to the legislation accepting the wider understanding
There are many human conditions caused by our fallen nature that prohibit or make normal marriage impossible & this article includes them. The bible is clear, God is not so unambiguous. If you don’t understand him, remain asking until he responds. There are many types invalids, mental unfit, bodily disfigured, genetically disfigured that cannot enter into normal marital relations due to no fault of theirs yet are unsuitable. Marriage is not designed for all nor is companionship only found in marriage. Many such adults continue to live with families & find happiness & fulfillment despite their conditions. This article is biased heavily towards forcing the church to accept gay sex. Its evil to even consider how sinister this article is. (Same-Sex marriage = gay sex) full stop. You are advocating for males to have sex with other males in the rectum, No. You are advocating for females with female genitalia to lie with other females with similar genitalia, its wrong, its wrong. If our fallen nature condition has unfortunately disfigured you, does it then allow one to oppose ckear bible texts & live in sin, No. What about the mental disorder causing kleptomania, the impulsive thieving. Do we condone it because its natural, No ways. We still condemn all forms of thieving. The biological & the by-choice are both condemned.
Perhaps you misunderstood me, I never said that the way Ancient Israel viewed marriage was the way God viewed it. I actually never said how I thought God viewed marriage at that time, but since you brought it up, I wholeheartedly agree with you. I do think that God’s primary reason for marriage may well have been for companionship, which is all the more reason we should not prohibit same-sex marriage. Gays and lesbians deserve the same blessing of lifelong companionship as anyone else. This is why I believe God is very willing to bless same-sex marriages.
Actually, if you bother to muddle your way through the Hebrew for this text you will discover that it is not near as clear as you suggest (I will include a quote at the end showing the problems recognized by some theologians), and most notably female-female, same-sex acts are completely left out. If same-sex sexual relations themselves were the concern here, then women would be mentioned as well, and they are not. That this is a reasonable assumption makes sense when we compare with a related Levitical prohibition against bestiality where the involvement of both men and women with animals is prohibited. Here, I quote: “‘Do not have sexual relations with an animal and defile yourself with it. A woman must not present herself to an animal to have sexual relations with it; that is a perversion." Lev. 18:23.
Like the male-male, same-sex prohibition, which is mentioned again in Lev. 20, bestiality crops up again too. In the case of the same-sex prohibition, again, only relations between men are mentioned. In the case of bestiality, both men and women are mentioned: “‘If a man has sexual relations with an animal, he is to be put to death, and you must kill the animal. If a woman approaches an animal to have sexual relations with it, kill both the woman and the animal. They are to be put to death; their blood will be on their own heads.” Lev. 20:15-16.
So, clearly, the reference to male-male, same-sex relations is a different kind of prohibition than just prohibiting all cases of same-sex sexual relations. This is why the context and language of these texts is so important and must be taken into account.
And yes, I know about Romans 1:26. You will tell me that that text expressly prohibits lesbian relations. First, realize that that is the only text in the entire Bible that even appears to address that topic, and secondly, many theologians question whether that is what the text is referring to, and I did address that in a footnote in the article above and could supply you with further material should you actually care to understand that verse better. Lastly, taken in context, Romans 1 is hardly Paul’s attempt to lay out what people should or shouldn’t do. He uses Chapter 1 as a setup for the “gotcha” in Rom. 2:1: “ You, therefore, have no excuse, you who pass judgment on someone else, for at whatever point you judge another, you are condemning yourself, because you who pass judgment do the same things.” I shouldn’t need to point out that if you use Rom. 1:26 to condemn gays and lesbians you are doing exactly what Paul says you should not do.
I will close with a quote from the book Unclobber by Colby Martin that addresses the Levitical same-sex issue, in case you might find that helpful:
"But before we look closer at the word abomination, I want to make a couple of observations about what we find in the original Hebrew language in Leviticus 18:22 and 20:13 (phrased identically until 20:13 mentions a death penalty). I know that talking about ancient languages is not everyone’s idea of a good time, but I hope you’ll stick with me because an exploration of the Hebrew leaves me feeling anything but certain and clear.
"First, there is an odd juxtaposition of nouns. In Hebrew there is one word for “man/husband” (ish) and a different word for “males” in general (zakar). And the same goes for women: a particular word for “woman/wife” (ishsha) and a different word for “females” (neqevah). Typically, you expect them to be used together: “man/husband with woman/wife” (ish with ishsha), or “male with female” (zakar with neqevah). However, in these verses, the lawgiver uses the general “male” (zakar) but then switches to the particular “woman/wife” (ishsha). If indeed the prohibition was intended to cover any and all instances of men having sex with men, we would expect a more general, “You shall not lie with males (zakar) as you lie with females (neqevah).” Or it might be even more specific: “You shall not lie with a man/husband (ish) as you do a woman/wife (ishsha).” But the Hebrew says, “You shall not lie with mankind as you do with a woman/wife.” This suggests a nuanced or situational prohibition, as opposed to an across-the-board law against any and all sex acts between men.
"Second, if these verses were meant to prohibit homosexual relations, then the second half of the verses become superfluous. In other words, if the law was intended to universally prohibit men having sex with men, then why have the phrase “as with a woman/wife” at all? Again, I think this points to a more specific or nuanced context. This becomes more intriguing when considering that, according to a Jewish hermeneutical principle (that is, a framework for interpreting the Bible), when a generalization is followed by a specification, only what is specified applies. Apply that principle here, and the generalization (“you shall not lie with a male”) is there only to highlight the specific (“as with a woman/wife”). Meaning, the Levitical lawmaker is referring to one particular expression of men laying with males. This is different than a sweeping condemnation against any and all same-sex sex acts between men.
Also interesting is the uncertainty with which translators handle the Hebrew phrase mishkevey ishsha, which over time became the lackadaisical English translation, “as with a woman.” We’ve already covered ishsha (woman/wife); that’s the easy part. (Although the question still remains: did the Levitical lawgiver intend the reader to think “woman” or “wife?” And might it change the application either way?) But combining it with the other word, mishkevey, is when it gets curious. Mishkevey is the plural form of mishkab, which means “bed”; it was used as a euphemism for the “act of lying down for sexual contact.” So, if we attempt a literal translation, it would be, “the layings of a woman,” or “the beds of a wife.” The only other time this curious word mishkevey is used is in Genesis 49: 4, when Jacob has harsh words for his son Reuben who, in Genesis 35, slept with one of his father’s concubines and defiled his mishkevey (place of layings). However, mishkevey ishsha is a strange and unique combination of words that is used nowhere else, and so scholars have had to do some guesswork to figure out what the lawmaker was saying. When attempting to translate this phrase to English, beginning in 1530 with William Tyndale, translators inserted the not-in-the-original-Hebrew prepositional phrase “as with.” Which says to me that translating the Hebrew to say, “You shall not lie with mankind as with a woman/ wife,” was less about a direct translation, and more about filling in the vague Hebrew with an English preposition to support a particular interpretation.
"The final observation I wish to make is what isn’t there — namely, any word against lesbianism. Even the most ardent supporters of the traditional perspective acknowledge the Bible’s lack of words against female same-sex sex acts (with the possible exception of Romans 1: 26, which we’ll get to in chapter 8). If we accept that these two Clobber Passages were inserted in to Israel’s Holiness Code book for the purpose of informing humanity about the divine prohibition against homosexuality, then why are female same-sex sex acts never addressed? That omission cannot be overstated.
“These four observations raise legitimate questions about the Old Testament’s clarity on the inherent sinfulness of homosexuality, and on any and all same-sex sex acts. There is no doubt that the lawmaker was prohibiting some sort of male-male sex act, but there is doubt as to the exact nature of the prohibition. The clunky Hebrew idioms — that we don’t fully understand — combined with the unexpected juxtaposition of nouns and the lack of prepositions connecting everything as we’d expect, ought to slow down a person before she or he quotes Leviticus as a definitive biblical word against homosexuality. These ambiguities and uncertainties in the text make for shaky ground on which to stake a claim that God clearly prohibits homosexuality in the Old Testament.”
Martin, Colby. UnClobber: Rethinking Our Misuse of the Bible on Homosexuality (pp. 86-88). Westminster John Knox Press.
DO YOU HAVE A GAY / LESBIAN FAMILY MEMBER ??
Are you aware that five per cent — one in twenty — is born gay / lesbian ?
Are you aware that this demographic percentage is true for every ethnic group, race, nationality ?
This means that every extended family — black, Hispanic, white, Asian —- of twenty to twenty five persons, has at least one niece / nephew / cousin / aunt / uncle / child / grandchild / parent who is gay / lesbian.
If you assert that you have no gay / lesbian family member it is because you are ignorant of the fact that the gay / lesbian member has not self identified to you, because they are aware of your hateful homophobia!
Do you concede that since only God has creative powers, that this huge minority of gay / lesbians on the planet —- multiple MILLIONS — were created by God ??
The current —-2020— US population is 330,000,000 - 330 million souls — which includes sixteen and a half MILLION gays / lesbians—- 16,500,000 persons with same sex orientation — all created by God !
Every western psychology / psychiatry association has confirmed that these 16,500,000 gays / lesbians had ZERO choice / input / selection of their sexual orientation—- just as you, a heterosexual, did not yourself choose to be straight — you were born that way —- so were they born gay !
You talk about others — mentally unfit, genetically, bodily disfigured who do not marry BUT CONTINUE TO LIVE WITH THEIR FAMILIES TO FIND HAPPINESS ??
Are you aware that gays / lesbians have such a huge rejection / shunning / shaming by their family members, that the suicide rate for gay teenagers is EIGHT TIMES that of straight adolescents ??
Are you aware that the Mormon religion, particularly homophobic, results in half the homeless population in Salt Lake City, being composed of teens / even pre teens — EVICTED by their families onto the streets — because they were gay / lesbian??
Most gays / lesbians ( unless they are children of accepting ATHEIST families ) are rejected, shunned , shamed by not only their families, but their Christian congregations / churches —- and you are claiming they can find companionship and happiness in the bosom of these hateful homophobes??
I am almost rejecting of a God, who created multiple millions of gays, who have ZERO personal input / choice / selection of their sexual orientation, and are then supposedly condemned to a life time of loneliness and celibacy!
More particularly when in my 84 years, I have observed
multiple SDA pastors / church administrators , who when
widowed, are remarried within a year, because they cannot
stand the LONELINESS —- most are of the “ viagra age “
when widowed, so they are not getting remarried for the sex!
Yet these same pastors, would be condemning their gay members to a
LIFETIME of LONELINESS when they cannot even stand one year without companionship !
God said IT IS NOT GOOD FOR MAN TO LIVE ALONE and that is true for gay men as well as straight men.
The longevity rate for married couples is hugely higher than that for singles —- the mortality rate for singles is statistically much higher than for married / partnered individuals .
Plus two can live more cheaply than one, when housing / cars / medical care / insurance are shared expenses — and if one partner should be unfortunate to lose employment — the other can support them —
Many singles become homeless when unemployed !
Now that same sex marriage is LEGAL in multiple countries the marriage certificate confers enormous benefits — estate, insurance , financial, taxes, social security, adoption rights, to those who are married —— you would deny these rights to gays / lesbians ??
You would also deny them the companionship, support, love, validation, affirmation, camaraderie, sharing that marriage affords — most married couples would value these benefits, even more than their sexual intimacy!
You would also deny them the financial security that a partner provides when unemployment / joblessness strikes !
You would deny them the extra longevity that being married provides !
SHAME ON YOU !!!
Of course, you may choose which interpreters you want so as to go along with your bias. (I have biases as well.). Your choice below, (Martin Colby) is a very liberal guy. Clearly outside of Adventist thinking. Why would you choose him? .
You are hired by the church to instruct our youth. What do Adventists teach? I don’t think our theologians would agree with your choice of theologians. It is still clear, even with your theologians, though that there are issues with same sex relations… See below.
I would say, The general noun, “male” is used with the more specific noun, wife because sexual relations are the thing being discussed here. So in my view, the prohibition is even clearer. The lawgiver takes a general term, “male” and says specifically, do not lay with a “male” as you would with a wife, clearly emphasizing the sexual aspect of the male/female relationships.
And that there may be no words against lesbianism is irrelevant to this discussion.
Yes, but they are linked to the State of the Union speech, this time a true State of the Mind… The pain disappears when I watch Nancy Pelosi “classifying” the infamous speech as TRASH.
Why did it take you so long, Allen?
Another good book is by Theodore W. Jennings, jr.
At the time  academic dean and professor of
biblical and constructive theology at Chicago Theological
“Plato or Paul? the origins of Western Homophobia.”
Another “history” book on Western Homophobia.
Begins with the early days of the organized Christian
Patrick S. Cheng , Ass’t Professor Historical and
Systematic Theology, Episcopal Divinity School, Cambridge,
“An Introduction to Queer Theology:Radical Love.”
Really? They had no words for female-female, same-sex relations, but they were perfectly able to describe sexual relations between women and animals, a much rarer practice? You are simply ignoring the obvious. The prohibition against whatever is described about seual relations between two men was simply not a blanket prohibition against same-sex relations, any more than the laws about sex during menstruation are a general prohibition against heterosexual sexual relations. Just because it has been the tradition to interpret the Levitical laws as condemning gay and lesbian sexual relations does not mean that has been the correct interpretation of these texts, or even that that was God’s intention in the first place.
I am not as far from church teaching as you imply. I suggest you get a copy of the NAD booklet I mention in the article:
Henson, B. 2018. Guiding families of LGBT+ loved ones: Adventist edition . North American Division of Seventh-Day Adventists, Columbia, Maryland. Copies of this booklet may be obtained from AdventSource: https://www.adventsource.org/store/pathfinder-club/leadership/guiding-families-of-lgbt-loved-ones-39347.
In the booklet you may learn quite a bit, such as that the church accepts that gays and lesbians are the way they are biologically and that they cannot change. The booklet condemns gay conversion therapy as well and advocates for a very loving and compassionate stance toward the LGBTQ+ community, including them as much as possible in the life of the church, without condemnation.
Also, there are a number of SDA church congregations that are gay-affirming, accepting same-sex couples into full church fellowship. Although Fundamental belief 23 does teach that marriage is only between a man and a woman, this is not church dogma. I, as a member of the church, like many pastors and theologians in the church are not required to fully accept such a statement. The church has always allowed for differences of opinion on such things. I know numerous pastors and theologians who agree fully with me that same-sex marriage is fully permissible and should be allowed. It may make you unhappy that some of us disagree with the traditional stance on same-sex marriage, but why do you feel such a need to police us over it. It seems clear that whatever I say you will not change your mind, but you can at least have compassion enough to make space for those who differ with you on this and only seek to forge a spiritual connection with God and his community of believers.
Or, are you going to, as Paul says, look on in condemnation? Remember, “ You, therefore, have no excuse, you who pass judgment on someone else, for at whatever point you judge another, you are condemning yourself, because you who pass judgment do the same things.”
You and me both. Life is too short to spend any time listening to that which was properly disposed of by Pelosi.
Now Steve, are you trying to further lead me astray with non-SDA theology? Tsk, tsk.
I was aware, and have looked at a bit, the first book you mention. Was not aware of the second, but both look interesting. One of my current favorites is Brownson, J.V., 2013. Bible, gender, sexuality: Reframing the church’s debate on same-sex relationships . Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing, one of the references I cite in the article. Brownson is from a conservative theological background, which makes his defense of same-sex marriage more significant to SDAs who also conservatively grounded. There are many works written from the more liberal theological end of the spectrum, which I can appreciate, but often are off-putting to SDAs.