Archive for Homosexuality

Sex is not filthy

wpid-Photo-20-maj-2012-1053.jpgIT’S TRUE!!

Not even when it’s really good! Not even when it’s long or loud, wet and rowdy. Sex is not even filthy when it is public or outside or taped. Sex is not filthy when it is between two men or two women. It is not filthy no matter what clothes we dress up in or not.

Sex is sacred

We need to remember this. our sexuality is agift from the divine source. It is sacred, it is a sacrament, it truly is. The word sacrament comes from the latin translation of Pauls letter to Collosi in the first chapter where Paul talks about a mystery, a secret. The word in latin is sacramentum it means mystery.

Three things are too wonderful for me; four I do not understand: the way of an eagle in the sky, the way of a snake on a rock, the way of a ship on the high seas, and the way of a man with a girl. (Prov 30.18-19 NRSV)

This describes it well, a mystery, things I don’t fully understand, things that are to wonderful to be properly described; The eagle, the snake, a sailing ship and sex. All sacred, none filthy (no matter how you feel about snakes).

Sex is an outer manifestation of ur inner longing. Our inner longing, our deepest desire is to merge, to unite, to manifest the truth that we are all one, with each other and one with the divine source.

Rabbi Akkiba is supposed to have said that: All the days of eternity are not worth the day the song of Solomon was included in the scriptures, for all the scriptures are holy, but the song of songs is the holy of holies. This about the book in the bible that writes unashamedly and explicitly about the erotic, sexual union of man and woman.

In the song the woman cries out: “Wake up, North Wind, get moving, South Wind! Breathe on my garden, fill the air with spice fragrance. Oh, let my lover enter his garden! Yes, let him eat the fine, ripe fruits.” (‭Song of Solomon‬ ‭4‬:‭16‬ MSG) And the man responds later: “You are tall and supple, like the palm tree, and your full breasts are like sweet clusters of dates. I say, “I’m going to climb that palm tree! I’m going to caress its fruit!” Oh yes! Your breasts will be clusters of sweet fruit to me, Your breath clean and cool like fresh mint, your tongue and lips like the best wine.” (‭Song of Solomon‬ ‭7‬:‭8-9‬ MSG)

What about pornography?

So if sex is not filthy, what about pornography then? Is it also sacred? No, not generally. But pornography does not make sex filthy anymore than beating somebody over the head with the Mona Lisa makes art violent. Pornography often pictures merging without union, it is the longing without the fullfilment, because however much the porn industry wants us to believe it orgasm or ejaculation is not the fullfillment of our desire, it is the union; It is two souls merging at a spiritual and energetical level, it is when the boundaries between our bodies blurr and we no longer know where I end and the other begins. If we think that sex is only carnal we are just missing the point.

Pornography most often missuse or abuse sex, but that does not make sex bad. Pornography contains a mechanical, empty, loveless, commercial version of sex. It is like doing church without spirit and love. Singing worship whithout the words resonating in your heart. It becomes a lifeless puppet theater, a shadow of something real.

Why should the devil have all the good sex?

William Booth said: “Why should the devil have all the good music”, and I want to use this on sexuality (regardless of what you believe about the devil). Not that the “Devil” has all the good sex, I simply don’t think this is true, what is true however is that we as Christians (It may be true of other religions as well, but I am a Christian and this is my path, so it is the only one I can speak from) have generally given up on good sex. Oh sure we say that we are doing it, we say that we think it is a gift from god, but then we draw the curtains, pull down the blinds, shut the lights and fumble aout in the dark. We don’t practice to get better, we don’t study sex, we do not teach our children about their bodies, we don’t teach our teenagers and young adults good sex (we tell them to stay away from it until that magical day when they suddenly should have mastery over it).

It is time for us to reclaim the divine Eros. It is time for us as Christians, as humans to take back this sacrament and treat it as such, as a mystery as something that is sacred and holy.

Making love

It is time for us to realise that god is love and love making is the act of manifesting god in our present moment. To outwardly manifest this inner grace, this inner longing and desire to unite and merge. Instead of seeing our sexuality as something shameful and inconvenient, instead of viewing sex and eorticism as unclean and filthy we need to celebrate it as a sacred part of life, a beautiful gift. We need to also write about it, talk about it, sing about it, simply celebrate the beauty of it.

We need to invite Eros back into the church! God is love, this means god is agape, storge, phileo and eros. As long as we lock eros in the basement and pretend she does not exist we do not get the fullness of the divine.

Kiss me, I am a Christian!

thinkgeek-kiss-me-im-elvish-2014-530x627-1So I was looking at one of my favourite geeky webpages when I found this T-Shirt that said: “Kiss me I’m elvish”. Which of course is a rip of of the old “Kiss me I’m Irish” slogan. And it got me thinking…
Today Christians are so afraid of any physical contact, because we have fallen into the gnostic trap of the body and it’s desires are evil and the spirit and things spiritual (that is not material) that come from god  are good. But it was not always so. over and over again the apostles, Paul in particular, but also Peter and others write to the early followers of the way to “greet each other with a holy kiss”. Most Christians are aware of the fact that the kiss was the greeting used by the disciples when they met Jesus (evidenced by Judas kissing Jesus in the garden). But as good Christians we quickly assume that it is a holy (read not very physical) peck on the cheek with an embrace that is actually not an embrace at all.

How wrong we are, and how little we understand of our heritage and in fact how great god is. For who, to quote John Eldredge in Wild at heart, made a kiss so delicious?

Peter and Paul kissing

Peter and Paul kissing

The holy kiss was a full kiss on the mouth. It was the sign of peace (eirene) and a sign of complete openness and vulnerability. It was a mimicking of god’s breath bringing life to Adam and Jesus bestowing the holy spirit through breath. It was the symbol of us all being one in Christ through the mixing of breath and closeness of the body.

Augustine wrote the following in one of his easter sermons:

Then, after the consecration of the Holy Sacrifice of God, because He wished us also to be His sacrifice, a fact which was made clear when the Holy Sacrifice was first instituted, and because that Sacrifice is a sign of what we are, behold, when the Sacrifice is finished, we say the Lord’s Prayer which you have received and recited. After this, the ‘Peace be with you’ is said, and the Christians embrace one another with the holy kiss. This is a sign of peace; as the lips indicate, let peace be made in your conscience, that is, when your lips draw near to those of your brother, do not let your heart withdraw from his. Hence, these are great and powerful sacraments.

Such openness and vulnerability, such love and intimacy. Only by being truly close to Christ and filled with spirit source and divine love could we handle this.

tumblr_static_richard_and_bobThe Irish slogan kiss me I’m Irish comes from the folkloric tradition of kissing the Blarney stone for good luck, if you could not get to the blarney stone, you took the next best thing, an Irish person! What if we would embody the love of the divine so fully and perfectly that we could experience the peace of god through the holy kiss. or if that is to sacred for our modern dulled sensibilities, a holy embrace. As Augustine rightly states, this is a sacrament!

There is no us and them

imageSomeone once told me that all dichotomies are false dichotomies. And maybe this is the most sinister but also the most widespread of them all. The very idea that there is us and them, the idea that we are somehow different *better” that them, whomever they are.

In what may have been one of the most important books I read this year, Disunity in Christ by Christena Cleveland, Christena lifts up the dangers of group-think and how we form our identity and belonging based on mutual disdain for them. What really got me was how deeply this is programmed into our lazy brains that work very hard indeed not to work at all. Categorising and labeling people and groups so that we don\t have to take on the hard task of staying open and fluid.

If we could just see on a personal level how we project both the good and bad onto everyone we meet then maybe we could see how we are prone to the same dynamics ona communal level. If we could start by erasing the I and you difference maybe we could start blurring the us and them lines. Most importantly if we could gain clarity and see how we project our own shadow (the parts of us that we are unaware of, often the scary parts) onto other people so that the evil we see in them is really the evil we are capable of ourselves. If we can, like Peter Rollins often have said, choose a level of communication where we can see that maybe we are the monster, then I think we can finally be freed of the dichotomy of us and them.

In the Enneagram the holy truth of the type eight is, we are all one! If we could only take this truth to heart and see that we are all members of the same body, parts of the same organism; If we could see that Ubuntu is not just about our little tribe but includes the entire creation, the entire manifestation of the divine. This I think is the theology of the trinity, the ultimate union and perichoresis where the many are all one.

Jesus message was a singular message of love. Love the other, and what better way of loving them, than including them in us and stating there is no us and them, there is only us. To be known, recognised, seen, heard and accepted is to be loved. and Love is the way of Jesus. Judgement on the other hand is the way of the accuser, the way of the shaitan.

Didaché states that there are two roads, one road leads to life and the other road leads to death. I deeply believe this. We can choose to live a life where we feel more alive with each step, where each desicion leads to more love, more joy, greater freedom. There is also a way of life that makes us feel like we are dying inside, where each step leads to us feeling less free, less alive, contracted and small.

Which way will you chose today?

My take on reality is this: There is no us and them, there is only I and us. Either I step upp and recognise that we are all one or I stay deep in my ego and while I may think that I am part of a small exclusive tribe all that has happened is that I have isolated myself in a very small and contracted ego-I and I live in the illusion that I am an island. An island (sometimes grouped with other contracted islands) isolated from the community of this creation. To open up and join the dance, that is the way of love, the way of Jesus.

Before you “come out” as a LGBTQ ally in church…

wpid-Photo-5-feb-2012-2359.jpgI am watching a fellow Salvationist lament on the LGBTQ oppressive teaching they are getting at a Salvation Army event. I grieve with here and cringe inwardly at the damage being done in yet another Bible study where no consideration is being given to the possibility of HBTQ people in the room.

At the same time I remember the cost and the pain of “coming out” as a LGBTQ ally in the Swedish part of the Salvation Army. To that end I have a short list detailing a few things to consider before “coming out”.

  • Are you willing to risk your friendships over this issue?
  • Are you willing to risk your livelihood over this issue?
  • Have you wrestled with the scriptures and found a secure place to stand?
  • Have you wrestled with your own sexuality and are you confident in where you stand?
  • Have you spoken with your closest colleagues, friends and family that might also be impacted by your stand?
  • Do you have a support network of people around you to ride out the storm with?

Don’t get me wrong, I am all for speaking up and taking a stand, but I urge you to find secure footing first, to find support and most importantly to truly reflect on the consequences to your faith, theology, relationships and work situation. In other words: count the cost before “coming out” so that when you to, you are ready.

Lastly, when you do, know that you are not alone!

The sacrament of coming out of the closet …

The biggest problem with wearing a mask is that as long as we wear it only the mask receives love. The psychology is as simple as it is diabolical, I know that what I am presenting is not real me, therefore I also know that the person you are loving is not really the real me. No matter how sincere your proclamation of love is I will always think that if you knew the real me you would not love me as you do now.

The mask hides our truly sacramental nature with a religious covering. If a sacrament is the outward sign of an inward grace, does not a fake exterior either hide that inward grace (best case scenario) or, worst case, witness of a false interior?

As Christians we talk about “walking in the light” and most often we mean by that, to be truthful and honest, to be open and perhaps transparent. I think we all would want people to see our masks (fine and polished as they are) and marvel at how composed and pure our exterior is.

The trouble is that in the closet there are only shadows and while we can, in the closet, see our own unmasked light, we cannot share it until we come out. And we can only come out by the grace of god. Patrik Cheng writes:

Regardless of how one ultimately comes out, the act of coming out reflects the very nature of a God who is also constantly coming out and revealing Godself to us in the Out Christ. Coming out is a gift that is accompanied by other gifts such as self-love, the love for others, and the overcoming of shame and internalized homophobia. Coming out is not something that can be “willed” or “earned”; it can only happen as an act of grace from God.

From Sin to Amazing Grace: Discovering the Queer Christ by Patrick S. Cheng

So the process of unmasking, of coming out is a sacrament, as it is an outward sign, much like baptism or in TSA enrolment, of an inward grace. The act of becoming oneself, revealing our true nature to the world.
And I think that this coming out process, the process of unmasking or the process of becoming is not a one time deal, it is a lifelong process where we each day choose to affirm and become who we are created to be.

Jesus in drag

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Why are you doing this? Why do you take such an interest in the LGBTQ and sexuality? The question has been asked of me many times. By my leaders, by the people in my congregation and by my family. In fact I think it was my brother who asked the million dollar question one day just after I had come out with my LGBTQ and the church series: “How many LGBTQ people do you have in your church?”

The truth is that I somehow knew that this was an issue that we had to deal with. Already at our Officers training (like seminary but for Salvation Army Officers) I started asking the questions. How are we to deal with the LGBTQ community? It seemed no one was particularly interested in even broaching the subject and the ones that did either did so with a love the sinner hate the sin attitude and some even sneered at me “Why should we talk about this, it’s not like they will join your church, and why would they want to join a club where they are not welcome?”

After receiving my orders and moving to Malmö it took one week before I was caught like a deer in the headlights of an oncoming truck: “What if two men asks you to marry them what would you say?” This, asked by a group of teenagers hanging about outside during the Malmö festival. I had no coherent or thought through answer, I believe I stumbled through some kind of: It’s complicated kind of response.

I realised I had to get my theology straight I had to reconcile what I knew in my heart to be true and how I read the bible. It was fishing for help in these issues that I stumbled into Tim. We met in the chatroom connected to Doug Paggit’s radio show, I do not remember how the conversation started but I do remember how it ended. Tim asked me if I wanted to talk about this over Skype and I answered that I would love to, it seemed it was hard to get anyone to actually have a constructive conversation about this that wasn’t just regurgitating old evangelical sound bytes.

The conversation with Tim was great, the fact that he didn’t try to convince me of anything helped. Not once did he try to say: “This is how you should read scripture.” He simply directed me to some great resources (Andrew Marin: Love Is an Orientation among others). But then he shared story after story about how he had encountered deep spirituality and loving worship within the LGBTQ community, this I think was important for me to hear as a recovering pentecostal fundamentalist. But nothing could have really prepared me for the shocking turn the conversation took next.

After having to swear on the record that I wouldn’t be recording our conversation Timothy told me about his project. How he also had found himself on a lonely desert journey and had decided that he once and for all had to deal with the inner Pharisee. That he had done this by coming out as gay (even though he was straight) to his friends, family and church. Here are his words about it:

The thing that truly astonished me with Tim’s story was that he was willing to literally walk a mile/a year in the shoes of the other (please learn more about Tim’s experiment and support his indiegogo campaign) . It is this uncomfortable truth that seems to trip me up wherever I go in my spiritual walk like a pair of shoes carelessly kicked of on the hallway carpet (always tripping you up on the way to the restroom). I am committed to work day and night for the human rights of others but am I willing to walk in their shoes and more importantly am I willing to know their pain. Not just know of their pain but to actually feel it?

I recently stumbled onto this disturbing quote from Jim Palmer‘s Divine Nobodies:

“I uncovered something unsettling about myself. I don’t really want a “relationship” with God. Here’s what I want. I want to share with God all I feel, all I need, all that grieves me, all that makes me happy, the puzzling things, the fun things, and the hard things, but I would prefer that God keep his stuff to himself. I don’t want to hear about his pain and share in his grief.”

That rings so true with me, I really want a shoulder to cry on but am I willing to bear the burden of the other, and am I willing to bear the burden of God?

Are you? Would you be willing to undergo persecution, ridicule just to know others? Would you walk the valley of death not for your own sake but just to know the other, to love them and maybe to realise that the other is not so different than yourself? If you won’t take it from me, please read more about Tim’s experiment and let it challenge you.

My conversation with Tim was, for me the first real step of this journey. I had been planning it for some time, checking out the catalogues, admiring the post cards, packing the bag but now I was ready to walk the walk inspired by Tim’s courage!

 

 

Who is queer?

I am not underprivileged, marginalised or persecuted in any ways. I am a Caucasian, heterosexual male with a DipHE in Theology and Mission. I am employed as a full time minister, doing what I love to do: to teach theology; to build and nurture relationships; to be a sign towards a mystery I may never understand.

When I started this journey THEY where the queer (weird) ones, the sinners. After some time they where still the weird ones but I had come to realise I was a sinner too. Slowly the line between them and us was blurred until I today realise that “we are here, we are queer, get used to it.” Today I am not sure that sin has anything to do with it (it being sex and sexuality). Don’t get me wrong I believe that it is entirely possible to abuse sex and sexuality, just as it is possible to abuse nature or friendships, or trust. What I have come to understand is that sex and sexuality is probably abused just as much (if not more) in the heterosexual bedroom/closet than the gay or lesbian bed.

The Q in LGBTQ stands for the Queer, not weird but rather that which crosses the boundary of what is generally consider normal. Just as “queer theory” is about the breaking down of traditionally fixed boundaries and categories. So if we are to stick with the traditional boxes and categories we are stuck with LGBTQ persons on the one side and the heterosexuals on the other. However what is normal heterosexual conduct? When do we cross into the Q? Are you queer if you only prefer blondes? If you only want to have sex standing up? If feet turn you on? If you prefer oral to vaginal? When are you queer, really, who’s to decide? I think it may be prudent for us heterosexuals to follow Marcella Althaus-Reid’s suggestion and come out of our hetero closet. In most marriage courses and classes on intimacy there will be a section on sharing our sexual fantasies (it seems the biggest hurdle to a healthy sex life is to what degree we are still in the closet) to share our personal queerness.

Patrik S. Cheng defines the Q of LGBTQ as those who are queer or Allies. At first when my theology started to shift I saw my self as an ally, one who could help them, over there. As my understanding of the term and myself grew, I realised that as an LGBTQ ally I was quickly becoming queer myself. Not that any of my sexual preferences changed, what changed was my perspective. By knowing “them” I came to love them, and by loving them I realised that them was really us. And so the boundary between them and me was blurred out by this radical love.

I agree fully with Patrick S. Cheng wh wrote:

“Christian theology is fundamentally a queer enterprise. That is, like queer theory, classical Christian theology is about the breaking down of traditionally fixed boundaries and categories.

God is a queer god, who crosses all boundaries by becoming a human, born by a woman, raised as part of a human family. We follow a queer Christ, who continually challenged the fixed boundary between clean and unclean, sacred and secular. The queer spirit then completely blurry the distinction between god and me as the spirit enters into my life, penetrating every part of me, incarnating into me if you will and the border between the world we know and the spiritual becomes hard to distinguish. Everything is spiritual, and if that is true then all our sexual queerness is spiritual too.

So while I may be a heterosexual, Caucasian male with a good education and a privileged position within the church I am also queer not only by questioning the heteronorm status quo but also by recognising that heterosexuality is exactly that: hetero, it is diverse and different from itself. Heterosexuality is not homogenous in any way, not that homosexuality is homogenous either. Maybe we would be better of talking about heterosexualities and homosexualities, indicating that rather than homogenous states they are two points in a complex matrix of sexualities.

In the end we come to a point where we must ask, what is normal? What is natural? And in the asking we become queer, and maybe that is the truth of it, maybe we are all queer?

The centrality of sexuality

Why is this such a big deal? Why does it matter? It should be a non issue! This is what both right wing and left wing, conservatives and liberals are saying all over the place. In churches people are taught that their sexuality, while important, is not essential. Sexuality does not define you, or who you are.

This reasoning is the basis for the “Love the sinner, hate the sin” theology that is so prevalent, it is also the basis for all pushes for chastity and purity vows etc. Your sexuality whatever it is is a non-issue, seek first the kingdom.

Even in non church environments where liberalism reigns the sigh of ‘I have had enough’ together with the statement “why are we even talking about this” in regards to LGBTQ issues (all well meaning of course, taking for granted the equal rights for all people). I agree, equal rights for all people should be a non-issue, it should be something we could take for granted but it is not. As long as LGBTQ people are discriminated against in subtle and not so subtle ways it is an issue of importance. I also disagree, because our sexuality is an issue of centrality it is so entwined with whom we are and whom we are created to be, it is a central part of our creaturliness and therefore can never be a disregarded or relegated to a peripheral discourse.

We are so saturated in hetero-normative, sterelised thinking that we cannot see how a heteronorm reading of the bible narrative marginalises not only LGBTQ persons but also our sexuality.

It all starts in genesis where we have cleaned up the grand creation narrative with a clinical zen like ex-nihilo, purgating all messy chaotic double entendre within the narrative. In true platonistic fashion we pretend that the fall has negated gods declaration of ‘very good’ and fall into a gnostic reading where the spiritual still is good but matter is less than or even downright evil.

We continue our discourse by spiritualising our OT readings so as to forget about sexuality or at least put all the evil sex in the hands of the others (the others often being the LGBTQ community) scapegoating the dirty and disturbing onto those perverted others, safely ignoring the beams lodged in our own orifices.

The Song of Songs is read as a safe poetic allegory but we do not delve to deep lest we disturb the unsettling notion of gods passionate eros for us as gods beloved.

We continue sterilising the gospels by making sure Mary is a virgin and stays a virgin (making her a mythical creature and not a flesh and blood human). We keep our blinkers on so we can ignore the disturbing images of the god-spirit sexually (forcefully?) impregnating a teenage peasant girl.

Jesus is in our reading portrayed male but chaste to keep this serene gnosticism intact to the end. The passion of the resurrection is left unspoken as Jesus rises as an eternal resurrection body (without sex) and ascending to the sexless marriage-less heaven where we deftly ignore all sexual marriage symbolism used to describe the coming kingdom.

So here’s the problem, we have neutered the biblical narrative making it a-sexual, like a eunuch (which ironically is also sexually deviant). Since this is how we read scripture this is how we see god an a-sexual deity and therefore it must be how we treat our sexuality. Either as something embarrassing that should not be or something that will at least perish when we are made holy.

We need to recover a queer god. A gay god is not good enough, as a gay god simply reaffirms the false homo-hetero dichotomy. A Jesus who marries Mary Magdalene reinforces the heteronormative narrative while a gay Jesus reinforces it by reinforcing the “negative” pole. A queer god is a god who is neither male nor female but trans-gendered (not as in transitioning from one to another but as one who transcends both without ever becoming less of either or fully other). We need to recover a queer god that creates with erotic pleasure and then sets us free to do the same. We need to recover a queer Christ, who is not secretly longing to tap Mary Magdalene or Lazarus but passionately, erotically loves them both (that is, he is sexually attracted to them). Whatever Jesus does with his sexuality (as in: does he act it out?) is here irrelevant, the fact that it is there and central to his actions, fuelling his passionate love for all humanity, omni-amourous.

We are sexual beings, our eros is part of whom we are, not all that we are, but a significant part. When we ignore it or sterilise it, or try to tame it, make it clean acceptable we suppress who we are and therefore who god created us to be. It is time as Marcella Althaus-reid writes in her ‘Indecent theology’:

“Isn’t it time the Christian heterosexuals came out of their closets too?”

Let’s stop pretending that we are all the same, that our sexuality can be summarised with missionary vanilla sex. If we can allow the interpretative gap that Jesus leaves on these issues, the invitation to midrash, be a starting point for our continued discourse. Let’s stop pretending that this is not an important issue. Lets stop pretending that we can stop talking, wondering, experimenting, longing, masturbating, copulating and loving it!

 

LGBTQ – Prelogos

I have written an extensive blog series (12 posts) on my Swedish blog about LGBTQ issues within the church in general and the Salvation Army in Sweden in particular. I was undecided whether or not I should post it in english as well, but when Sven Jungholm asked last week if he could translate and post it over on his blog for former officers I agreed. Then I thought I might as well post it over here to for reference and to direct some of my english speaking friends when they ask about the subject.

So without further ado here is the series…

Will the real sodomite please stand up.

We are talking about homosexuality, grace, church at the corps right now. It is astounding to note how much bad theology and how sloppy exegesis we have let become the foundation of our stance on the issue of homosexuality. It is scary to realise that we have let a handful obscure (hard to translate with accuracy at the least) scripture verses define our stance on homosexuality.We let Jesus central message of love and hope be overridden by these half a dozen references.

Worldwide the word sodomite is used to describe homosexuals even though even a light and sporadic reading of the Sodom narrative will reveal that what is discussed is not and cannot be homosexuality (heartfelt love and attraction between two people of the same sex) rather a horrifying picture of violence, rape, hatred and pure evil. Please understand I am not stating that the sodomites where good, no to the contrary, I would argue that sodom and sodomites are a symbol for pure evil in the Old Testament.

Looking through the texts we find that the rest of the bible refers to sodom as a place of evil but not a place of homosexuality rather a place where guests where treated badly (and that is the understatement of the year) so the subject of the story is not homophilia but xenofobia. Consider jesus words to his disciples when he sends them out to preach the gospel:

““When you enter a town and are not received, go out in the street and say, ‘The only thing we got from you is the dirt on our feet, and we’re giving it back. Did you have any idea that God’s kingdom was right on your doorstep?’ Sodom will have it better on Judgment Day than the town that rejects you.” (Luke 10:10–12 MESSAGE)

Here Jesus not only refers to the severe judgement of Sodom but also the sin of Sodom inhospitality or simply the lack of love.

Theologian Jesper Svartvik argues that there is a clear link between the Sodom narrative and the myth of Procrustes, the man who would receive guests and let them sleep in his bed of iron, while they slept he would take his tools and make them fit his bed, by making them taller, and in later versions of the story cutting bits of to shorten them. Much like the church has been trying to make the GLBTQ community fit our christian iron bed. So the sin of sodom is the “come as you are, but  you must become like us” mentality that permeates our Christian thinking. As long as we approach people with the hidden, or not so hidden agenda to change them or transform them we are being the real sodomites. Violating our sacred guests to make them into our image, when surely what we need to be doing is to merely point to Jesus in loving conversations and let God worry about change, conversion and transformation. Who amI to tell you what God meant when he created you?

Will the real sodomite please stand up?

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