Well, I see Mr. Phelps is at it again: trying to put a monument in the park condemning Matthew Shepard. And the ironic thing about the whole affair is that he is using Leviticus 18:22. Anyone who says that Scripture condemns us Gay people is automatically telling you three things about themselves. 1) They know nothing about language and the use thereof. 2) They know nothing about Gay life. And 3) - and this is the saddest part of all - they don’t even know their own Bible. Let me explain. "Thou shalt not lie with mankind, it is abomination" certainly outrightly condemns us Gay people. There can be no argument with that. And I'm, sure that everyone would agree with me. There's only one problem with that statement. That's NOT what the Bible says. That's what Mr. Phelps says the Bible says. So what does the Bible say?
Leviticus 18: 22: "Thou shalt not lie with mankind AS WITH WOMANKIND, it is abomination." If you're like most people you probably didn't pay much attention to your seventh grade grammar teacher. That's why when I ask you to identify "AS WITH WOMANKIND" grammatically speaking you'll probably scratch your head and look at me with a rather blank stare. "AS WITH WOMANKIND" is a simile. Now to make sure we're all on the same page: a simile is 'a figure of speech comparing two DISSIMILAR[!!!] things using the words 'like' or 'as'.' Please note: TWO DISSIMILAR THINGS!!!
Let me give you a couple of examples of the simile/no simile paradigm I'm talking about. Suppose you have just turned 16 and gotten your driver's license. You come to me and: “ Okay, pops. I want to drive the family car.” As your father I am going to give you two options. 1) You will NOT drive the family car, I hate that. 2) You will NOT drive the family car, AS YOUR OLDER SISTER DRIVES THE FAMILY CAR, I hate that. Now which option would you as a teenager choose? The first one? Hardly! According to the first option you wouldn't drive the family. PERIOD! You would choose the second option. Why? Because by choosing the second option you could drive the car anyway you wanted to as long as you DIDN'T drive it like your older sister did.
Let me give you a second scenario and then I'll tie the whole thing together. Suppose I were a landlord and I watched you moving your stuff in as a new tenant. I see you carrying in two huge stereo speakers. As your landlord I'm going to give you two options. 1) You shall not play music: I hate that. Or 2) You shall not play music AS THE PEOPLE IN 3-B PLAY MUSIC, I hate that. Now you as the new tenant, which option would you choose? The first one? Not a chance! According to the first option you would never play your music. You would choose option no. 2, because with that option you could play your music anyway you wanted to just as long as you DIDN'T play it as the people in 3-B play it.
Now let's look at the two Gay statements. 1) Thou shalt not lie with mankind, it is abomination. Or 2) Thou shalt not lie with mankind AS WITH WOMANKIND, it is abomination. Now as a Gay person which option would you choose? The first one? Not even on a bet. Because with that option you could not have ANY kind of Gay sex. You would choose the second option. According to that option you can have any kind of Gay sex you wanted to just as long as you DIDN'T have sex as with a woman. In those days women were not equal to men as they are today. They were pieces of property and to be used as such by the men (father, brother, husband, etc.) who owned them. That's why when we treat our lovers as a second-class citizens (or 'as womankind', if you please) it becomes hateful in the Lord's eyes.
Now the question arise: is there a physical example of this in the Bible? YES, THERE IS! 1 Samuel 20: 41: “And as soon as the lad was gone, David arose out of a place toward the south, and fell on his face to the ground, and bowed himself three times: and they [David and Jonathan] kissed one another, and wept one with another, until David exceeded [climaxed]." In other words they made love until David climaxed. Does it tell us how? No. We don't need to know how they made love. All we need to know is that they DID make love and by so doing committed a homosexual act. Not there are a lot of people who dismiss my interpretation and claim that all David and Jonathan did was to give each other a friendly kiss of good-bye. Those people are making a big mistake. Calling that act a homosexual act is not my interpretation. It is the interpretation of an EYEWITNESS! That's right! There was an eyewitness to the whole affair. And he called it a homosexual act!
1 Samuel 20: 30: "Then Saul's anger was kindled against Jonathan and he said unto him, Thou son of the perverse, rebellious woman, do not I know that thou has chosen the son of Jesse to thine own confusion, and unto the confusion of thy mother's nakedness?" Translated: "YOU FAGGOT! WHAT MAKES YOU THINK I DON'T KNOW YOU’RE HAVING SEX WITH DAVID!?!" In other words King Saul is not only accusing Jonathan of being Gay, he's also accusing him of having sex with David. And this isn't being done in the quietness of some backroom somewhere. He is yelling it at his son at one of his banquets with all the people at court being there and listening to it. Now if Jonathan were as heterosexual as he's presumed to be, he would have been on his feet, pounding on the table demanding an apology from his father.
Was he? No. In fact he didn’t even bother denying it. How could he turn his back on the man he loved? Besides everyone at court knew what was going on.
So what did he say? 1 Samuel 20: 32: "And Jonathan answered Saul his father, and said unto him, Wherefore shall he be slain? What hath he done?" In other words Jonathan didn't deny it at all. And under the law: silence implies consent. Now that we have cited the homosexual act, and proved it was a homosexual act by an eyewitness, we must ask ourselves 'What did God think of it?'. 1 Kings 15: 5: “Because David did that which was right in the eyes of the Lord, and turned not aside from anything that he commanded him all the days of his life, save only in the matter of Uriah the Hittite." Since what we're talking about had nothing to do with Uriah we can conclude that God APPROVED of David and Jonathan. There it is. Signed, sealed and delivered. We have the act, the eyewitness account and the acceptance by God. (Act, Attitude and Alliance!) So does Leviticus 18: 22 condemn all Gay behavior? With what you've just read - directly from the King James Version of the Bible - NO IT DOES NOT! But at this point we must be careful. Just because we are not condemned in the Bible does not mean we have been given a free pass to go a-whoring.
David and Jonathan weren't condemned because they were married. (1 Samuel 20: 42, et al) So you see the very verse Mr. Phelps says condemns us....doesn't. It qualifies us! What irony! The verse that Mr. Phelps says condemns Matthew Shepard to hell is the same verse a Gay martyr can use for entrance into heaven! And Matthew Shepard certainly qualifies as a Gay martyr. So who speaks for Matthew Shepard? I DO!
Rev. Dr. Thomas Krahn, ddl. hon. ret. "World's Leading Gay Theologian Who is Gay!"
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