Christianity's Problems with Love and Sex 

Late in the twentieth century the Western Churches began to realise that Homosexuality cannot be cured and decided that it was OK to be Homosexual provided you did not practise it. That's rather like saying that it's OK to be left handed (sinister  in Latin) but you must not use your left hand to write, but no matter because gay people became increasingly bold and, in particular, those of faith allowed themselves to believe that God really did love them too. I have no idea whether buggery  is a sin or whether refusal to see it as such condemns one to eternal damnation, but I doubt it. What I do know is that those who condemn it with hatred in their hearts are not following Jesus. Some trot out that well worn phrase Hate the sin but love the sinner, but they surely haven't thought about it. Hate is a very nasty word and, in my view, cannot be applied to a thing  or even an idea. Hatred is personal and implies wanting someone dead. Maybe you think that it is possible to say, for example, I hate that red wall, but if you do you are really castigating the one who made it so.

Personally I don't much care what it says in Leviticus, I have a little more time for St Paul who said some wonderful things about Jesus, but he also said some unfortunate things about women which, even if they were mis-interpreted, kept women subservient for centuries. Was the Holy Spirit asleep?

Let's get on to more wholesome ground. The other day I saw a father kiss his (perhaps nine year old) son at the school gates. In some quarters that would have been totally unacceptable even as late as the Sixties or Seventies and, for all sorts of reasons, totally taboo in my youth. Thank Heaven we can now begin to enjoy affection properly. There can be no greater joy on earth than to know that someone loves you, whether fleetingly or even more so, maturing over time. As an example of the former: at particularly low point in my life when it seemed that I was on the receiving end of what felt like hatred, I was refreshed and sustained by a freely given cuddle from a three year old boy and an unexpected bottle of ginger beer bought by a dear friend, his father. He couldn't hug me although his wife could have, so we still have some way to go.

Let us bolster encourage and celebrate love and affection in all it's forms and put sex back in the private background where it belongs. I do not look around an average church congregation wondering what each person or couple do in bed, the idea is offensive. To those who have the good fortune to have  attractive and faithful spouses I say: Thank God for your blessing. Some of you seem to think you deserve a medal and produce six children to prove it, not so, you are blessed in a way that others are not for a variety of reasons, we may be single, widowed or divorced, some are gay, some have other problems, leave us to work out our own salvation as best we can, without the blessing you have.

It has been said many time that Jesus said nothing about homosexuality. That may be because there was no issue, the Jews certainly regarded it as a sin. Or maybe He did not think it important. However He did say something about Eunuchs in Matthew 19, which we do not seem to have many of nowadays!     . However since the anti-gay folks effectively want gay people to be Eunuchs,  maybe it is relevant.

It follows the bit often quoted in this context by the anti-gay folk: (verses 4 to 6)
And he answered and said unto them, Have ye not read, that He which made them at the beginning made them male and female, And said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh? Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.

It continues with a denunciation of divorce, which we now largely  ignore, and continues at verse 11

But he said unto them, All men cannot receive this saying, save they to whom it is given. For there are some eunuchs, which were so born from their mother's womb: and there are some eunuchs, which were made eunuchs of men: and there be eunuchs, which have made themselves eunuchs for the Kingdom of Heaven's sake. He that is able to receive it, let him receive it.
Finally let's address the real sexual problem: the fact that it has become a commodity, bought and sold, marketed, sought without affection never mind love, to be enjoyed after an evening of drinking oneself silly, simply a self indulgent masturbation. Since sex can no longer be confined within marriage, let's make sure it is confined within love and affection. Otherwise Society is doomed.

Return to Contents Page (Papers)