“All our evidence pointing to the historical Jesus… indicates that he not only avoided marriage and family himself but also taught people to forsake those institutions and enter into an alternative, eschatological society. The household was part of the world order he was challenging. It, along with other institutions of power, would be destroyed with the coming kingdom. The household, moreover, represented traditional authority, which he was challenging at every turn.”
— Dale B. Martin, Sex and the Single Savior: Gender and Sexuality in Biblical Interpretation (via shortbreadsh)
“In short, Paul objects to two things as unnatural: one is male-male sex and the other is long hair on men and short hair on women. The community opposed to gay marriage takes one condemnation as timeless and universal and the other as culturally relative.”
“I… don’t doubt that those who advocate gay marriage are advocating a revision of the Christian tradition.
But the community opposed to gay marriage has itself revised the Christian tradition in a host of ways. For the first 1500 years of Christianity, for example, marriage was deemed morally inferior to celibacy. When a theologian named Jovinian challenged that hierarchy in 390 A.D. — merely by suggesting that marriage and celibacy might be equally worthwhile endeavors — he was deemed a heretic and excommunicated from the church.
How does that sit with ‘family values’ activism today?
Yale New Testament professor Dale B. Martin has noted that today’s ‘pro-family’ activism, despite its pretense to be representing traditional Christian values, would have been considered ‘heresy’ for most of the church’s history.”
“Unbeknownst to most lay Christians, the vast majority of Christian theologians and saints throughout history have not believed life begins at conception.
It won’t do to oppose gay marriage because it’s not traditional while advocating other positions that are not traditional.”
“The community most opposed to gay marriage usually reads these condemnations [of divorce] very leniently. A 2007 issue of Christianity Today, for example, featured a story on its cover about divorce that concluded that Christians should permit divorce for ‘adultery,’ ‘emotional and physical neglect’ and ‘abandonment and abuse.’
The author emphasizes how impractical it would be to apply a strict interpretation of Jesus on this matter: ‘It is difficult to believe the Bible can be as impractical as this interpretation implies.’
Indeed it is.
On the other hand, it’s not at all difficult for a community of Christian leaders, who are almost exclusively white, heterosexual men, to advocate interpretations that can be very impractical for a historically oppressed minority to which they do not belong – homosexuals.”
(via alexorue) check out also:
“I think we all, inescapably, bring our prior beliefs to the Bible, and read the Bible in a way that reflects those. I think the damaging thing is when people say that they’re just taking the Bible for what it says, and that they don’t have prior beliefs or theology that guides their interpretation of the Bible.”
— Jonathan Dudley