Gender issues

One of our mandates is to promote a biblical worldview and another is to call our Nation back to its Christian heritage.  We live in a culture that is normalising homosexuality, and progressive churchmen hurl dismissive accusations of ‘irrationality,' ‘religious bigotry’ and ‘hate speech’ at those defending a Biblical view of sex.  There is serious conflict developing between Bible-believing Christians who defend the Judaeo-Christian values and a powerful pagan religious ideology.

It soon becomes apparent when addressing the issue of gender that there is a strong correlation between a monistic (one-ist) understanding of God and the practical issues of spirituality, particularly sexuality.  The pagan understanding of God as a spiritual force within nature results in a deconstruction of heterosexual norms while homosexual practice is encouraged because its roots lie in pagan religious thinking.  Polytheism produces poly-gender, as we’ll go on to see.

Homosexuality in early history

Homosexuality has existed throughout human history, since the Fall and the exit of Adam and Eve from close fellowship with God the Creator.  The story of Lot in Sodom occurs in the early chapters of Genesis (chapter 18) and a similar incident in Israel is documented in Judges 19.  Non-biblical history supports the fact that there were many periods of free homosexual practice.

Dr Peter Jones, in ‘Letter to a Homosexual Friend’ explains that in the Sumerian age (1800BC) in Mesopotamia, bisexual or trans-sexual (androgynous) priests were associated with the worship of the goddess Istar.

Their condition was due to their devotion to Istar, who herself had transformed their masculinity into femininity.  They functioned as occult shamans, who released the sick from the power of demons just as (according to myth) they had saved Istar from the devil’s lair.  The Canaanite goddess Anat preserves many of the characteristics of Istar.  She is young and marriageable, but also a bearded soldier.  She symbolises the mystical union, which was celebrated by the worshippers as a ritual enactment of the sacred spiritual marriage.  At the beginning of the fifth century AD the cult of the goddess Cybele was served by homosexual priests called galloi.

Contemporary examples

Equally today, Peter Jones goes on to say, we see Siberian shamans, known as Chukchi, and the shamans of Central Asia engaging in ecstatic rituals and dressing as androgynes.

Among a pagan people-group in the bush of southern Borneo, the basir, asexual priest-shamans . . . true hermaphrodites, dressing and behaving as women, have a priestly function.  This behaviour characterises Amazonian shamans, celtic priests (ancient and modern) and Indian hijras.  In Hindu Tantric Yoga, androgyny is the goal, because two contrary principles of Shiva and Shakti are joined as one.  The yogin, through powerful techniques of sexual-spiritual meditation, is thus transformed into a kind of androgyne.

We could go on to consider the homosexual transvestites in American Indian religious practice, and similar figures to be found in African and Australian Aboriginal cultic practice.  Robert Baum (Traditional Religions of the Americas and Africa) remarks:

Some African societies have developed intermediary genders of men-women and women-men who, like their Native American counterparts, are seen as sacred and as spiritually powerful individuals.

Baum concludes that ‘gender-variant men have fulfilled a sacred role throughout the millennia.'

Monism or one-ism

The Bible shows us that God is not the spirit within nature, but is nature’s distinct Creator.  It follows that scripture also emphasises the God-given distinctions of heterosexuality, since he is separate from his creation.  In paganism, ‘God’ is a word for the divinity of all natural things, but she or he has no special place.  God is simply everywhere, within everything.  There is no ‘other’; no God outside of us or different from us.  Pagans would subscribe to the view that the Bible went wrong in rejecting the goddess of the ancient Canaanites and her consort, the serpent.  The serpent, which constantly sheds its skin, symbolises the rejuvenation of nature and expresses the divine character of natural life.

Theism or two-ism

In contrast, the Biblical worldview honours God as Lord of all.  He doesn’t belong in the circle of life as some kind of diffuse energy.  He is outside of it because he created it.  He is holy, set apart, and uniquely special.  However, although he is separate from us, intimacy with the Creator is possible because he is also personal. 

God’s design for men and women

God’s design for mankind is ‘difference.'  Eve was created as a helper, different from Adam.  She complemented him in every way, was equally valuable, but crucially and essentially different.  Essential because the human task was (and still is) to make the earth habitable and fill it with offspring.  From this perspective, homosexuality is a creational dysfunction and homosexual marriage an oxymoron. 

Man (men and women) have a distinct, holy and significant place in God’s creation.  From the start God created distinctions, separating things out and giving each thing its place and function.  For example, each living creature is created ‘according to its kind’ and declared to be good.  Then God’s creation was given clear, distinct and identifiable labels or names. 

The creation of male and female distinctions was the culmination of God’s creation.  Marriage between a man and a woman is God’s design for two people, though different, to find unity and communion without losing their differences.  They come together in a fruitful relationship as separate individuals who complement each other physically and in the roles they fulfil.  But earthly marriage is only a shadow of the relationship between Jesus and his bride, the Church.  If we are united to Christ by faith, we are part of his bride and he is our bridegroom.  The ‘marriage supper of the Lamb’ will take place at the end of the age, when we see Jesus face to face. 

Contrast with paganism

In contrast, paganism believes separation is evil.  Perhaps this explains why homosexuality and androgyny are associated with pagan spirituality.  The practice of homosexuality must have flowed directly from pagan spirituality as it developed outside of Eden.  An endorsement of this view comes from a modern homosexual leader at a Pagan Spirit Gathering in 1985 (See ‘The Twilight Labyrinth’ by George Otis):

We feel there is a power in our sexuality . . . a queer energy that most cultures consider magical.  It is practically a requirement for certain kinds of medicine and magic.

Another homosexual pagan confirms the spiritual dynamic:

It is simply easier to blend with a nature spirit, or the spirit of a plant or an animal, if you are not concerned with a gender-specific role.

The goal of pagan religion is to blend everything, dismissing created distinctions between male and female, animals and humans, right and wrong, God and creation.  June Singer, a pagan writer, even calls androgyny (joining male and female in one person) the ‘sacrament of monism.'  Androgyny is seen by monists as a symbol of their spirituality, so they eradicate differences wherever they can. 

Alfred C Kinsey

Decades before the sexual and cultural revolution of the ‘60s, Alfred C Kinsey (1894-1956) argued persuasively to students in universities globally that traditional norms were false and that the American male was promiscuous, self-pleasuring and significantly homosexual.  Kinsey died believing he had failed in his crusade to promote more enlightened sexual attitudes.  Yet within 20 years of his death, in the US, the definition of obscenity was narrowed, the portrayal of sex in art, literature and film was broadened, the birth control pill was introduced, Illinois became the first state to repeal its sodomy laws and homosexuality was removed from the list of psychopathologies.  Similar relaxing of laws surrounding sexual ethics were happening in the UK around the same time.

Liberation of sexuality

Many ordinary men and women, according to the promises of the revolution, changed their private lives in the belief that those changes would help create a better, more open society.  Before Kinsey, marriage was called ‘the sexual act’; after Kinsey, sexual expression knew no bounds.  The 1960s called for gender equality for women, which in turn has led to sexual equality being extended to at least 5 sexes (male, female, gay, lesbian and bisexual).  Some find as many as fourteen!  The gay-lesbian-transgender crowd now wants to smash gender categories and obliterate the social norms within those categories.

The effects of sexual liberation

Back in 1970 the Gay Revolution Party Manifesto declared:

The gay revolution will produce a world in which all social and sensual relationships will be gay and in which homo- and heterosexuality will be incomprehensible terms.

In effect, they were saying that the Biblical terms for male and female indicating clear distinctions between the two, will have become incomprehensible.  Forty two years later we find:

*    A gender-neutral pronoun has been proposed for use in Sweden’s public schools

*    ‘M’ and ‘F’ are disappearing from birth certificates and passport applications in Western countries

*    ‘Parent’ or ‘progenitor’ A and B are replacing mother and father

Christians' response

Despite these trends, many Christians fail to consider a discussion on gender to be important.  But the direction the West is taking leads to a future inhospitable to Christian truth.  2000 years of Judaeo-Christian values underpinning society with the normative male/female distinctions will become, to use Peter Jones’ phrase, ‘homophobically unspeakable, culturally silenced and legally prohibited.’

By its very nature, on a cultural level, monism leads to homosexuality while theism leads to heterosexuality.  As the West increasingly embraces the new spirituality (neo-paganism) it is buying into the homosexual/androgynous lifestyle.  This latter will be the dedicated opponent of orthodox biblical Christianity.

The future

Many Christians think nothing much will change if the law allows gay marriage.  In fact, normal social relationships will be drastically altered to make room for people such as Robert Lopez, who grew up in a ‘genderless’ gay household learning ‘few recognisable social cues . . . for how to act, how to speak, how to behave, in the outside world.'

The normal heterosexual world will be demeaned, side-lined and then condemned to silence.  Already, in California, all public schools have to include positive discussions of trans-genderism, bisexuality and homosexuality.  All other viewpoints are now silenced.  Traditional Christian views at the Vanderbilt University have been forbidden, in the name of diversity.  In the UK, Ofsted inspectors have applauded primary schools where transgender is accepted and encouraged amongst children as young as 4 or 5. 

There is no doubt that gender, already a big issue, will become even more so in the near future.  Lauren Winner, author of ‘Real Sex’ says this:

We need to ask ourselves whether the starting point for a scriptural witness on sex is the isolated quotation of ‘thou shalt not’ or whether a scriptural ethic of sex begins instead with the totality of the Bible, the narrative of God’s redeeming love and humanity’s attempt to reflect that through our institutions and practices.

Here at Christian Spectrum we're committed to a thoroughly Biblical worldview, where Creator and created are distinctly separate, where man and woman are distinctly different, where marriage is distinctly between a man and a woman, and where the marriage supper of the Lamb is distinctly between the Redeemer and those redeemed through the blood of Jesus.  Vive la difference! 

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