Saturday, October 22, 2011

The sky is black!

Of course, it's night time, and the sun has slipped over the horizon, but the context really isn't all that exciting, is it?   Let's be dramatic and proclaim that the sun is gone and the sky is black.  Oh woe!

  Ok, I'll be kind and let you in on the issues that precipitated my little philosophical rant of the day.  I read a story on Milkboys....(here)... in which a pastor again calls homosexuality a sin.  Now, I know that there are some who come here and do not agree with me about God, and that's ok.  But for the record, I believe.  We all get an opinion, this is mine.

  The following was difficult for me to put into something clear and that makes sense without writing a novel in the process.  So, please forgive some leaps where I don't explain out the reasoning so well.  I'm basically trying to make a point...I would be happy to debate in another forum.

  So, a part of the life of Randy that some of you don't know is that at one point I took theology classes.  It was a time of self exploration for me, and I found a great deal of myself in that time.  But, as I was raised a Christian, if not always acting in that belief, I did have a cultural background that helped me to understand the odd curves associated with putting words down to describe what very few have had the opportunity to meet.  And, in that, I guess it's like trying to describe a symphony to someone who is deaf; the context just isn't there.  I understand that, and have come to forgive those who have tried.
  The vid on Milkboys talks about the best used scripture to denounce homosexuality.  And, like my first statement, it requires just a bit of context.  First, the story of Paul...who had to be struck blind by God to get his attention.  He was a lawyer, a bit zealous (in current speak) to be sure, riding herd on a bunch of men who took up Christian slaying as a hobby.  So, knocking him off his ass and blind is likely the only option God had.  You see, Paul thought he was already doing the work God would have him do, as a devout Jew.  Sound familiar with some of our current pulpit pounders? 
  What these Bible thumpers don't tell you is that Paul felt that the body was such a temple that the use of prostitutes was not acceptable.  And, yes, many were using them then.  There were the normal prostitutes we are familiar with still, and there were some who were what they called temple prostitutes, who were used without regard for the cost to the person.  It was just sex, and the rationale was that the giving of the body in such a way directed the prostitute closer to heaven.  
  So, Paul spoke about the use of sex outside the relationship, the couplehood.  He spoke about adultery, fornication, use of prostitution, etc., all of which take place outside a committed relationship. never really hear about this part of the scripture, do you?
  There are a great number of pastors and preachers, haters and professional hypocrites, and even some who are quite sincere...all telling us that homosexuality is bad because Paul said so right here.  What they are missing is that Paul was screaming at the top of his lungs that placing anything above God was the problem.  Preachers and believers of the time were justifying all sorts of things in error, still living their old lives despite their profession of belief, and putting those priorities above their relationship with God. 
  So, for clarification...the use of 1Corinthians6:9-11 to denounce homosexuality is out of context. 


Sammy B said...

Hello Randy
The answer, in my opinion, is encapsulated in the phrase you used - 'professional hypocrites'. Biblical 'quote mining' is pretty much like statistics - you can use it to prove or disprove almost anything, according to your particular agenda. I suppose it could be said that it's easier for me to take this kind of attitude, as an atheist, because I don't believe in any of it, but that doesn't make the cherry-picking hypocrisy any less distasteful. Corinthians, Leviticus, whatever. It's all mythological nonsense underpinned by a Bronze Age moral code, totally inappropriate for the 21st century, as far as I'm concerned.

Love & best wishes
Sammy B

randy said...

Hi Sammy;
Your opinion and mine are, of course, different. And, I know you are referring to the moral code being inappropriate in this century....I've never heard the term "quote mining", but I like it.
Thank you for reminding us that our faith, or lack of it, has little to do with the cherry-picking hypocrisy of preachers, but the conviction of our very being. It is what makes one free; that he may believe or not believe without persecution.

Doug said...

Unfortunately there are a lot of preachers out there that never really understood the Bible like it was meant to be. They go by what they were taught. Then there are the preachers like me who did take the time to study the Bible and the history behind it. I myself follow several rules from the Bible.

1. place God above everything.
2. treat other people like you want to be treated.
3. do not judge other people.
4. everybody has sinned.

Like Randy said, Paul was talking about all sin being bad. Fortunately there are a growing number of pastors out there who actually show the love God wanted us to towards all other people, and respect everybody for their own beliefs whether they believe in God or not.

Anonymous said...

Dear Doug,
I am a god-believing people. But I don't believe in any religion, cause I think, they are made up, to help stabilizing and growing society - against other religions.
So far so bad.
I myself follow the simple rule of humanity: Treat others, as you want to be treated.
And from this stand, I think, we have to judge others, by using this --- as the oldtestamentarians are showing the world, with their indulgeny and hate ... and greed, that for them their belief doesn't hold ana tolerance.

Of course their acting out against GLBT IS - for them directed against other religions - and this of course is, for them a question of power.

I myself follow the simple rule of "humanity": Treat others, as you want to be treated yourself.

And from this stand, I think, we have to judge others, by using this
categorical imperative

Dear Doug, would you please answer me two questions please:

1. What is the Bible ment to be? Oldtestamentarians just interpret it in THEIR way, for the benefit of who?

2. Don't you really judge hatepreaching teachers or preachers - against GLBT for instance; especially when you strongly suspect, that this hatepreaching is for promoting the sole belief of inequality?

If you please could answer me these -?

Bearhugs all around - especially for Randy, who raises such really important questions.

With my best wishes
<3 miles

Scottie said...

Hello all. I am going to just jump in here, hoping not to jump right off the table so to speak. I think you all are right.

However I am going my personal belief or not of God out of this conversation as it really has no part in it. This is about randy's belief and his understanding of his Gods words and wishes. As such I am glad he has an educated knowledge as it helps to have facts to refute hate.

I have heard the term cherry picking and quote mining before. Both refer to using the bible to back up your already held beliefs instead of using the bible to form your beliefs.

I think each person who uses the bible to attach something others do, should show they follow the whole teachings of the bible such as all the dietary laws, and all the grooming habits and of course a few slaves and ect. You get my point. no need for me to beat a dead.....ass.

But I understand Miles point that religion is a great behavioral control system. all rewards are promised for the future, and the duties are for now, and of course be happy with your station. Now the other thing is at that time in our history we needed those rules in truth. Well most of them. The reason was we were living in a dirty uneducated time and those rules about food and rest and such helped keep us alive and healthy.

Ron and I watched an interesting show this morning on the bible. Not to pick on that holy book, but I love history. Seems there were books form the bible that were left out as they did not fit the growing power structures ideas. Also I learned that the books were not written by those they are named after.

I wont bore you guys with all the show as you all have more education than I do and probably already know all this stuff. But the grand thing is people who let their lives be shaped by opening themselves up to a loving God, letting the word and spirit come to them , not telling God what to do , but asking and waiting, people who let the bible make them, well those people really get a lot out of the bible and comfort from Their deity even knowing the faults and mistakes of the people involved with the creating of the book we call the bible. Those who do the reverse, invoking God to support their own desires, keeping their needs before their faith...well they couldn't understand the power of a flawed holy book and they couldn't find a real Deity in a bucket on a leash.

Well sorry but I tried my best to express what I think, what I feel and what I hope for. Many hugs to all. Randy I love your many topics for conversation.

randy said...

Hi Doug and Miles;
go ahead and reply Doug, if you wish. I enjoy the debate, but please let's be careful that we never become personal or deny anyone their opinion's validity.
I love that we can debate, I just want to maintain care and respect.
hugs all;