Search This Blog

Showing posts with label homosexuality. Show all posts
Showing posts with label homosexuality. Show all posts

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

General Relativity and God's Law

  In 1666, Sir Isaac Newton developed the first laws of gravity based on his observations.  He hypothesized that all matter has a gravitation "flux" emanating from it outward to other matter and this "flux" was responsible for attracting other matter.  From this he was able to derive his basic Law of Gravitational Attraction


   Of course Newton could not prove the existence of this invisible flux but based on planetary motion and other experiments it all seemed to fit.   Newton's laws were also based on some basic fundamental foundations that seemed to make sense to the scientists of his time.  The first assumption is that all space can be described in a simple 3D (height,width,depth) Cartesian coordinate system and all observers would measure the same distances no matter their orientation or movement.  Second, all observers would measure the same amount of time to pass regardless of their location or movement.

   Both of these basic assumption all seemed to make sense.  Why wouldn't we all measure distances the same and all of our watches run the same?  No one could see a reason why not, and so for over 350 years those assumptions were never challenged.   That was until Albert Einstein came along.  His observations of light bending around the Sun revealed that Newton was not 100% correct in his assumptions.


   Therefore, because Newton's basic requirement was wrong, all the laws of motion, momentum , energy etc. all had to be re-evaluated leading to Einsteins greatest achievement: The General Laws of Relativity.   This paper showed that gravity is not some mysterious invisible "flux" but instead a bending of space-time by mass which causes objects moving in a straight-line to appear to be moving in a curved line to us.  Like marbles rolling on a large stretched sheet of rubber that has been indented by a large heavy bowling ball they appear to be changing their trajectory because of the curved rubber, but they are trying to stay on a straight line that has been changed by the bowling ball.


  
    So what is that to me?

    We are often like Newton and the scientists of his time.  We have basic assumptions of up,down,left,right and that all our watches are the same.  It all makes basic sense to us.  How we see the world and how we THINK it should work are not always correct.  For some of our decisions, like Newton's Law on Gravity, it works fine.  Newton wasn't 100% wrong but he wasn't 100% right either.  His law was "good enough" to get us to the moon and back but if we used it to get to a nearby star we would miss it by a billion or so miles.   We also, spiritually think we have it all figured out.  We know what is best and what is not.   Adultery?  That's just a new loving relationship being formed.   Homosexuality?  That's just an alternative lifestyle.  Pornography?  That's just extreme art.  Lying?  That's just an alternative form of the truth.   Stealing?  That's just an individuals attempt to reapportion wealth from those who don't need it as much.

   But that is not how God sees it.   Like Newton thinking the world coordinate-system is all straight lines, what matters is how the universe sees the coordinate system.  So also, how we THINK the world should work and how God sees it are different, but in the end what matters is how God sees it and not you.

   Let's take Homosexuality for example.  Let's assume that our world reaches the point where homosexuality is EQUAL to heterosexuality in every way.  No more taboos and full acceptance by all members of society.   What would our world be like?   First, let's admit that men and women are different when it comes to relationships.  Men want physical love (sex) and women want emotional love (communication).   Given this, which will men "gravitate" towards to fulfill their individual needs?   It has been said that "The ideal mate for a man is another man and the ideal mate for a woman is another woman".   Men would essentially be given to mating to other men.  This is because we as a species are extremely lazy when it comes to working for what we want.  Have you seen all the fast-food restaurants around you lately?  One late-night comic once said, "I am waiting for the day when I can just pull up to the drive-in and open my mouth and have them feed my burger and shake straight into my mouth".   The same will be true about our sex lives as well.  Take for example prostitution.   Here men, unwilling to spend the time to communicate and woo a female partner are more than willing to pay for sex with a woman to get what they want.  It's a lazy-mans form of sexual release and it willingly degrades a woman to achieve that goal as well.

    God knows us better than we know ourselves.  He knows that laziness + homosexuality = death to our species.   Of course he can't communicate this to a primitive man in the Old Testament and so must use the "Don't do it because I find it disgusting!" argument to scare them away from these practices (who knows maybe many men in the Moses-era were already doing these things).

    God is not some irrational angry being.  He has reasons for his law and when take the time to try to see things from HIS perspective we see that he is right.






















Thursday, March 26, 2015

A conscience is a terrible thing to waste!

    Back in the 1970's an ad-campaign by the UNCF (United Negro College Fund) had a very simple and catchy phrase:
Because a mind is a terrible thing to waste
    This meant that wasting anyone's mental abilities to contribute to society would hurt us all in the end and therefore we should try to help ALL people become more educated.   The campaign worked and blacks enrolling in college increased through scholarships offered by the UNCF.

     Today we may need a new ad-campaign:
Because a conscience is a terrible thing to lose
     Martin Luther, the 16th century Christian reformer, was what you might call a conscientious objector.   He was called before the Catholic hierarchy and the politicians to re-cant (take back) all he had written as he revealed how far the church had strayed from its roots and teachings.   Martin Luther asked for one day to formulate his answer and he was granted it.   After a night of prayer Marin Luther returned to the court to give his answer and here it is:

Unless I am convinced by the testimony of the Scriptures or by clear reason (for I do not trust either in the pope or in councils alone, since it is well known that they have often erred and contradicted themselves), I am bound by the Scriptures I have quoted and my conscience is captive to the Word of God. I cannot and will not recant anything, since it is neither safe nor right to go against conscience. May God help me. Amen.
     We owe much to his bravery to stand up to the powers as he was branded a "heretic" and had a bounty put on his head for anyone to collect.   He was given refuge by a German nobleman who agreed with his teaching and lived in his castle attic for many years while he took on the work of translating the Bible from Latin into German.   His willingness to stand up for his conscience freed many more like him who also no longer agreed with the Catholic churches teachings.

    A conscience is a very personal thing.   It is at the very heart of our Freedom of Religion and to have our own set of beliefs to follow.   It was once said that,

 "If you can't live with yourself then who CAN you live with?".   

    A dead conscience will eat you alive from the inside like a maggots eating rotting flesh of a deceased person.  A conscience drives us each to do what is right in our own eyes despite the opposition.   We've all been there at some time in our lives.  We were in a position to speak up for someone or some group and we chose to be silent.   We  remember those times vividly as we play it over and over again in our minds. We agonize over our choice knowing we chose wrong and the repercussions of us doing so were obvious.  It's a difficult thing to do.   Often it is occurrences like these that cause so many our war-weary-soldiers so much depression and guilt that it incapacitates them and prevents them from rejoining society.

     Today, people around our country are being asked to go against their consciences as well.   For example, people who own bakeries are told they MUST make wedding cakes for weddings they do not agree with.   You may not like their position any more than the Catholic church did not like Luther's.   But at odds is their conscience verses your insistence that they bow to your edicts that gay marriage is no different than traditional marriage.   Should they stuff their conscience away and never listen to it again?   What kind of country will we become if we force all of our citizens to ignore their consciences when they go counter to the governments or the majority's wishes?  Should they only care what the government believes is right and follow orders?   Should such people be jailed for having a difference in opinion or view?  Should they be put out of business for their faith?  Should the churches they attend be taxed or fined since it was those institutions that undoubtedly influenced them to have such a narrow view of marriage?

    Another thing to consider when you decide to use the blunt force of the government stick to get people to do your wishes is you build increasing amounts of anger and animosity towards you group rather than acceptance.  Of course you can force their physical bodies to perform the deeds you asked for, but their hearts and minds will be forever against you.   This will only require you to use increasing amounts of force over time to move the pendulum further to your side of the room.   But watch out for the day will come that you will not be able to push it any further and the pendulum will swing the other way and all that pent up energy will be released in ways that can be very destructive.   Other countries have witnessed this in their own countries (mostly African countries where one tribe rules another for so long and then it flips on them).    In South Africa this almost happened against the whites after the blacks gained control of the country and only by the grace of God through the work of Nelson Mandela did it get diffused.

    I am glad to see people of reason from the other side standing up for people of conscience and telling their people to "knock it off!" in attacking these people in the court of law and also the court of public opinion.     We need more of these people to come forward and I hope and pray they do.   I believe they recognize the value of a conscience and how it is one of our most basic rights as human beings to be nurtured and protected.  After all, a society of citizens whose consciences have been numbed will be a terrible place to live.


Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Is God unfair to homosexuals?

    I often hear the lament of homosexuals in regard to Christians views (which are actually Biblical views) that they cannot help how God has made them.  In doing so they have placed the blame at God's feet for their "life-style" rather than on themselves.   But is that valid argument?

   First let's look at the 6th commandment:  Thou shalt not commit adultery.

   In Jesus day, the Jews (of which he was one) were trying to validate their own righteousness by systematically going thru the law and trying to keep all of the commandments themselves.  When it came to the 6th commandment, they felt they had that one in "the bag" as all they thought it meant was you just had to keep certain male body parts away from other female body parts and you were fine.  But Jesus breaks up their little charade by saying:

   "You have heard it said, 'Do not commit adultery', but I say to you if a man looks upon a woman with lust in his heart he is already guilty of committing adultery with her in his heart.   If your right eye causes you to sin, gouge it out. For it is better to enter heaven with one eye than to enter hell with two"

   Let's parse this section a little.

   First of all, imagine the Jewish pharisees standing around him when he said this. Their mouths must have dropped when they heard this.  Really?  It's not enough to stay "physically pure" I must stay "mentally pure" as well?    This must have felt like a smack across the face.

    Second, notice how Jesus says "man looks upon a woman with lust in his heart".   He doesn't say "a person looks up another person".   It's strictly man to woman and not the other way around.  Jesus knows that MEN have a much harder time adhering to this commandment than woman do.  He knows its in our DNA to chase every female who presents herself to us.   I would say in fact men have 100 times more trouble holding to this commandment than woman do.  (also note how Jesus' puts the problem on MEN and not WOMEN as Islam does.  He does not call for woman to cover themselves from head to toe to keep men from lusting ... instead he calls out the men).   

    Third, Jesus follows it up with some of the most incredible advice ever given by saying we should "gouge our eyes" if they offend us.   Now here I think Jesus is actually killing 2 birds with one stone.  First of all he is making a point to those who want to EARN their place in heaven by showing to what extreme they will have to go to in order to make that happen.   He knows how he made us and how incredibly difficult of a task it will be.   Next he is saying to us that he knows we are fighting out own bodies.  His illustration of eyes, feet and hands "offending us" makes them out to have a life and will of their own.  Consider it like an involuntary "reflex action" in which the body does not need the brain to tell it to take your hand away from the burner... it does it all by itself (or at least only up to the spinal cord and back). How many of us men also feel like we are not in control of our own actions.   We see a pretty woman walking down the street and INSTANTLY our eyes turn and we must look at her.   How many men do we see shown on the evening news who seem to have no control over themselves sexually?   For example, we recently had 3 teachers (in the past year) in our high school found guilty of having sexual relationships with girls under their care.  Even my son said, "What are they thinking!  Is it really worth throwing away a career and all the money you spent in college to get that job?"   Obviously other needs took a higher priority in their lives and they are paying the price for it now.

    So let me ask you this?   Is it fair God made us men they way we are?   Why didn't he make woman this way too?   Why do THEY get a break and we don't?   ( Oh I know movies and TV like to make you THINK that woman are as lustful as men are but in reality that only happens in very very rare cases.)

    Once when Jesus was teaching about divorce he said,
"You have heard it said 'A man may give his wife a letter of divorce if she does something that displeases him' but I say to you, except for marital unfaithfulness (adultery) it is wrong to divorce.   To this Peter (who was married) said, "This is difficult command.  It is better for man to not marry".    
 Jesus doesn't cut us any slack but instead points us to how things ought to be rather than how we would like them to be.   One time I was talking to my son (who's 22) about marriage and told him about a couple in which the wife became paralyzed from the neck down and was no longer able to have a normal sexual relationship with her husband.   I told him that even though this is not what the husband bargained for when he said "I do" he remained with her and loved her regardless of the fact that he would never have sex again.   My son was aghast and said " I don't think I could do that!"   But you must ask yourself: "Is God being unfair to the married man?"   Should he not have the right to have sex?  Shouldn't he be allowed to divorce her and find another mate in order to be happy?   Shouldn't the wife adopt the philosophy of  "If you love something set it free!" and let her husband go?  After all sex is a vital part of being human... isn't it?

    That brings me to my final point.   Our world has indoctrinated us on how vital sex is to us.  TV, books, videos filled with countless doctors, lecturers and gurus and told us we are sexual beings and it is wrong to pent-up those feelings and urges.   We instead should express ourselves sexually whenever and with whoever (as long as its consensual, the other person is older than 17 unless its the case of an older woman and a younger man then the age requirement may need to be overlooked or dropped  to 13 etc.. etc.. etc...) ,  We are told it's as needed as food and water for us to be healthy humans.  But what does Jesus say? 

    When Jesus started his ministry he fasted for 40 days (went without food) and the Bible says that at the end "he was hungry"  (starving would be a better word).   The devil tempted him to turn stones into bread and eat.  Now of course no one today would scold Jesus for taking care of his own physical needs.  But Jesus says "Is life more than bread?"   The answer to that question is of course NO.   He trusts God will provide food for him when the time is right.   He knows that while "public opinion" might be on his side to use his power (his right) to fill his stomach,  he must instead rely on God.

     We too must also ask ourselves, "Is life more than sex?"   Is it sooOOOooo important that we should abandon God's commands?   Jesus says, "If you love me, you will keep my commands".   You will put him before everything else just as he put US before himself to save us by dying for us on the cross to do all we could not do ourselves.

    So back to the original question:  Is God unfair to homosexuals?   I think in light of this you would say NO. 


POST NOTE:

   To those who say "Because Jesus never said anything directly against homosexuality and only Paul did in his letters,  must mean that Jesus was OK with it and Paul was just a bigot"  I will say this.

  1. Jesus' 3 year ministry was to the Jewish people who knew the Old Testament teachings.  Telling them that homosexuality is wrong would be like union president reminding his members it's wrong to work past 5 o'clock without getting paid overtime.   He doesn't need to say that because they already know that.   Instead he spends his time with them teaching them that they cannot work their way to heaven but must rely 100% on God's grace and love.
  2. Paul was ministering to the Gentiles (non Jews) who had no knowledge of the Old Testament and so he needed to instruct them on these matters
  3. An absence of discussion does not mean it's condoned.  For example, I have never heard my pastor say anything in his sermons about how smoking marijuana is bad.  That does not mean he is "cool with it".  He has only so much time to preach and cannot cover every topic under the sun.