Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Yes and no …

… Is the God of Jews, Christians and Muslims a homophobe? - LA Times. (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)

The desert religions of Abraham — Judaism, Christianity, Islam — were shaped by an encounter with a God who revealed himself within an ecology of almost lunar desolation. In such a place, the call to belief was tribal, not individualistic. Sexuality was an expression of faith to increase the tribe. Allegiance to God and to one’s ancestors was fulfilled by giving birth. And it is not only some radical Muslim teacher in a Florida mosque who professes such a theology. St. Augustine, one of the most sublime teachers of the Christian church, argued that the primary reason for marriage is having children.
 There are obviously parts of Scripture that reflect nothing more than the time and place and circumstances of the encounter with God. I feel no need to conform to the customs and mores of desert nomads who lived thousands of years ago. I don't think anyone else should. either. As David Steindl-Rast says in Deeper Than Words, scripture should be read accurately, not literally. There evidently are  some who think of themselves as Christians and Jews who harbor atavistic religious notions. But they are a small and unrepresentative minority. Such is not the case with Islam, and that is the problem that currently needs to be addressed.

Here is something well worth reading: Twisting Scripture, Pastor Insists Gays Worthy of Death.

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