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Subject: Christians and Crustaceans rss

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Xander Fulton
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Now, now - you know full well that Christians believe the first part of the bible is just 'interesting history' that you don't have to take literally (except for the parts you do have to take literally).

It's the second part of the bible that has the instruction for Christians, so the text in Romans and 1st Corinthians has the relevant details, here, and those don't speak out against certain seafoods...
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Release the Kraken!!!

You forgot the molluscs.
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chaendlmaier wrote:
"Not that which goes into the mouth defiles a man;
but that which comes out of the mouth, this defiles a man."


But shouldn't this quote also apply to homosexuals - at least the gay fellas?

As long as they swallow.
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If this is an honest question, the honest answer is that most Christians see the Old Testament law as mainly ceremonial and legal, not as a moral code per se (though in a theocracy, it's an admittedly blurry line). The trouble is that the New Testament (which is much more morality focused) also condemns homosexuality while being very permissive when it comes to the old dietary laws.
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happyjosiah wrote:
If this is an honest question, the honest answer is that most Christians see the Old Testament law as mainly ceremonial and legal, not as a moral code per se (though in a theocracy, it's an admittedly blurry line). The trouble is that the New Testament (which is much more morality focused) also condemns homosexuality while being very permissive when it comes to the old dietary laws.
Yet it's the old testament that is the basis of creationism, that is the point I think. The fact that (when it suits them) Evangelical (and other right wing) Christians pick and mix the old and new testament to back up their world view.
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Actually you might argue that it's conservative reaction to the early evolution theories, somewhere in the nineteenth century that is the basis of creationism... for most of Christian history Genesis has been read metaphorically...

But that is beside the original point! Which, if taken as a serious question, I would probably answer thus:

If we take the christian understanding of grace as a release from OT law, then it is a release from OT law - and that must mean all of it; hanging onto one verse about homosexuality, but ignoring those that surround it and how they would impact our lifestyle choices is, frankly, nonsensical (Jed Bartlet does a good number on this, if I remember rightly, in one of the early West Wing episodes).

There are, however, still verses that seem to specifically speak out against homosexuality in the NT - but there are also verses that limit the ministries of women, how long your hair should be, and prohibiting black-pudding (which I suspect is something of a bigger issue this side of the Atlantic...). And there are also, of course, verses that say things like, 'God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God. And God lives in them', and 'The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath', and 'I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full'. We can be very selective in choosing which verses are universal, and which are context specific (bear in mind that the idea of homosexuality that existed when St Paul was writing is vastly different to the idea that exists today) - and we really shouldn't be.

We are, however, imperfect, and we will probably never manage an entirely balanced approach to scripture. But in a sense, that is OK - scripture is not the eternal, inerrant revelation of God, and should never be understood to be, and certainly shouldn't be used to condemn people as if it were - because the inerrant, eternal revelation of God is none other than God himself, Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

Anyway, that's my thoughts, in a not particularly structured way - sorry!
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Gmaal wrote:
(bear in mind that the idea of homosexuality that existed when St Paul was writing is vastly different to the idea that exists today)


What's the difference?
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Galaad Maal
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As I understand it, homosexual activity of 2,000 years ago was not in its most common forms (though not never) linked to loving, monogamous, committed relationships (which is the kind of homosexuality that I would consider normative in the modern setting).

In Roman society who penetrated whom was more important than gender - what was frowned upon was being penetrated by someone who was of higher standing i.e. it was fine for a man to penetrate a woman (because women were of lower standing), and fine for a man to penetrate another man - if he were of lower standing (e.g. a slave); in that context who you had sex with, and specifically their gender, had no direct relation to one's own sexual orientation.

In the contemporary Greek society the model was something known as pederasty, in which young boys were often 'apprenticed' to men of good standing, who taught them, cared for them and looked after them - and in exchange slept with them. It was a situation that would continue until the young boy were old enough to grow a beard. And again said sexual interaction had no bearing on sexual orientation. (I'm not claiming this as an authoritative source, but it came up quite quickly on google and substantiates the above, which I had in my head from other places (and had already written) http://ancienthistory.about.com/cs/sexuality/a/aa011400a.htm)

Both forms are quite obviously socially tiered, non-equitable and degrading to the lower caste, who become objects for use. You can see why Paul might have had something to say about them in the context of preaching a gospel in which 'There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.'

And again, I reiterate, these are not generally the models of gay relationships in our contemporary society, which have far more in common with modern heterosexual relationships (which I suspect, in turn, have not that much in common with ancient ones...).

All that said, history is constantly being re-written, and Paul is fairly strong on the points when he makes them, so I wouldn't want to call anyone wrong who stood by them on good conscience.
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Most homosexual conduct today is within monogamous, committed relationships?

Studies show otherwise, but I'm sure there are even further studies that show that it's true. Here's the link to a most likely biased source, FRC, and you can give me a link to your totally unbiased source for that claim.

http://www.frc.org/get.cfm?i=IS04C02
 
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Jythier wrote:
Most homosexual conduct today is within monogamous, committed relationships?

Studies show otherwise, but I'm sure there are even further studies that show that it's true. Here's the link to a most likely biased source, FRC, and you can give me a link to your totally unbiased source for that claim.

http://www.frc.org/get.cfm?i=IS04C02


It's always kind of silly when I see people argue about how much sex and drugs homosexuals have gotten up to, and how they're such failures at monogamy. Even leaving aside for the moment the assumption that monogamy is 'correct.'

As an experiment... lets make heterosexuality a social taboo, and illegal. Ostracize and criticize anyone any time it's found out that they like to have sex with people of the opposite gender. Force them to live in the open as though they were gay, prevent them from marrying people of the opposite sex, and essentially force them to only engage in heterosexual activities in secret.

Then, lets see how many years it takes of heterosexuality being essentially forced out of acceptable society before straight people's relationships start falling apart.
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Chad Ellis
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chaendlmaier wrote:
"Not that which goes into the mouth defiles a man;
but that which comes out of the mouth, this defiles a man."


Does this mean blow jobs are OK, provided you swallow?
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DCAnderson wrote:
Jythier wrote:
Most homosexual conduct today is within monogamous, committed relationships?

Studies show otherwise, but I'm sure there are even further studies that show that it's true. Here's the link to a most likely biased source, FRC, and you can give me a link to your totally unbiased source for that claim.

http://www.frc.org/get.cfm?i=IS04C02


Then maybe we should encourage them to stay monogamous with some sort of legally binding contracts.


The article talks about there being marital laws but a much smaller percentage of homosexuals get married than heterosexuals even when such things are available to them. Even in committed homosexual relationships, it appears that monogamy is not the norm, but the exception, whereas in committed heterosexual relationships, monogamy is the norm.
 
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Jythier wrote:
Most homosexual conduct today is within monogamous, committed relationships?


Male or female?

There is a clear gender difference when it comes to promiscuity. That's not to say that all men are promiscuous and no women are, but rather that men as a whole are more promiscuous than women as a whole. (Think of it like height -- men are taller than women; this isn't negated by the fact that my cousin Joy is taller than I am.)

What does a lesbian bring on a second date? A U-Haul.

All that said, the gay men I know who are of my age group are generally looking for committed relationships. In college they may have been more interested in partying and hooking up (much like the straight guys I knew in college) but the drive to pair-bond is pretty strong in humans, whether gay, straight or otherwise.
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I believe it was mostly males that it studied for that particular characteristic, and I can't say I disagree with you. I'm just relaying what the study said and still waiting for contrary research.
 
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DCAnderson wrote:
Jythier wrote:
DCAnderson wrote:
Jythier wrote:
Most homosexual conduct today is within monogamous, committed relationships?

Studies show otherwise, but I'm sure there are even further studies that show that it's true. Here's the link to a most likely biased source, FRC, and you can give me a link to your totally unbiased source for that claim.

http://www.frc.org/get.cfm?i=IS04C02


Then maybe we should encourage them to stay monogamous with some sort of legally binding contracts.


The article talks about there being marital laws but a much smaller percentage of homosexuals get married than heterosexuals even when such things are available to them. Even in committed homosexual relationships, it appears that monogamy is not the norm, but the exception, whereas in committed heterosexual relationships, monogamy is the norm.


Even if homosexual monogamy isn't as common, it doesn't mean that homosexual promiscuity defines all homosexual relations.


Yeah, but I don't suppose it did in Paul's time, either.
 
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Chad Ellis
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Jythier wrote:
The article talks about there being marital laws but a much smaller percentage of homosexuals get married than heterosexuals even when such things are available to them. Even in committed homosexual relationships, it appears that monogamy is not the norm, but the exception, whereas in committed heterosexual relationships, monogamy is the norm.


Look at how the article does that, though. It compares heterosexual marriages with homosexual relationships.

The article wrote:
The 2003-2004 Gay/Lesbian Consumer Online Census surveyed the lifestyles of 7,862 homosexuals. Of those involved in a "current relationship," only 15 percent describe their current relationship as having lasted twelve years or longer, with five percent lasting more than twenty years.[4] While this "snapshot in time" is not an absolute predictor of the length of homosexual relationships, it does indicate that few homosexual relationships achieve the longevity common in marriages.


Essentially they're asking people who are dating or married how long their relationship has lasted and then comparing that to data about how long marriages actually last and saying, "Hey, full marriages tend to last longer than the average romantic relationship." Well, no kidding! That's why people tend to wait to get married until they've found a partner they want to spend their life with, i.e. someone they are much more compatible with and committed to than their average dating relationship.

They do the same thing with "fidelity," comparing the fidelity of married heterosexuals with that of homosexuals "in a relationship". And, of course, they only measure male homosexuals because relationship fidelity among female homosexuals is much higher.
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Basically, I'm citing research to refute a specific point made in a specific post - you seem to think I'm condemning homosexuals due to this research, which is not the case. All I was arguing was that most homosexual conduct today is within monogamous, committed relationships is an incorrect assumption and needed to be backed with facts in order to fly here.
 
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Chad_Ellis wrote:
Jythier wrote:
The article talks about there being marital laws but a much smaller percentage of homosexuals get married than heterosexuals even when such things are available to them. Even in committed homosexual relationships, it appears that monogamy is not the norm, but the exception, whereas in committed heterosexual relationships, monogamy is the norm.


Look at how the article does that, though. It compares heterosexual marriages with homosexual relationships.

The article wrote:
The 2003-2004 Gay/Lesbian Consumer Online Census surveyed the lifestyles of 7,862 homosexuals. Of those involved in a "current relationship," only 15 percent describe their current relationship as having lasted twelve years or longer, with five percent lasting more than twenty years.[4] While this "snapshot in time" is not an absolute predictor of the length of homosexual relationships, it does indicate that few homosexual relationships achieve the longevity common in marriages.


Essentially they're asking people who are dating or married how long their relationship has lasted and then comparing that to data about how long marriages actually last and saying, "Hey, full marriages tend to last longer than the average romantic relationship." Well, no kidding! That's why people tend to wait to get married until they've found a partner they want to spend their life with, i.e. someone they are much more compatible with and committed to than their average dating relationship.

They do the same thing with "fidelity," comparing the fidelity of married heterosexuals with that of homosexuals "in a relationship". And, of course, they only measure male homosexuals because relationship fidelity among female homosexuals is much higher.


So, show me the research on female homosexuals, or that compares male heterosexuals in a relationship to male homosexuals in a relationship. As originally stated by myself, the research appears to be biased to favor heterosexuals.
 
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Jythier wrote:
Chad_Ellis wrote:
Jythier wrote:
The article talks about there being marital laws but a much smaller percentage of homosexuals get married than heterosexuals even when such things are available to them. Even in committed homosexual relationships, it appears that monogamy is not the norm, but the exception, whereas in committed heterosexual relationships, monogamy is the norm.


Look at how the article does that, though. It compares heterosexual marriages with homosexual relationships.

The article wrote:
The 2003-2004 Gay/Lesbian Consumer Online Census surveyed the lifestyles of 7,862 homosexuals. Of those involved in a "current relationship," only 15 percent describe their current relationship as having lasted twelve years or longer, with five percent lasting more than twenty years.[4] While this "snapshot in time" is not an absolute predictor of the length of homosexual relationships, it does indicate that few homosexual relationships achieve the longevity common in marriages.


Essentially they're asking people who are dating or married how long their relationship has lasted and then comparing that to data about how long marriages actually last and saying, "Hey, full marriages tend to last longer than the average romantic relationship." Well, no kidding! That's why people tend to wait to get married until they've found a partner they want to spend their life with, i.e. someone they are much more compatible with and committed to than their average dating relationship.

They do the same thing with "fidelity," comparing the fidelity of married heterosexuals with that of homosexuals "in a relationship". And, of course, they only measure male homosexuals because relationship fidelity among female homosexuals is much higher.


So, show me the research on female homosexuals, or that compares male heterosexuals in a relationship to male homosexuals in a relationship. As originally stated by myself, the research appears to be biased to favor heterosexuals.


Despite that, it's not really the point.

The whole culture has gone mad, and it's just as bad for heterosexuals to not be monogamous, and cheat, or be poly, or whatever you want to call it when lust overcomes self control while in a committed relationship.

So I don't really care which side is less monogamous.
 
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For the sake of argument, let's suppose that homosexuals are as a class more promiscuous than heterosexuals; again, I'm not saying that is correct but rather postulating it for the sake of argument.

Supposing that were the case, how much would it be due to the inability of homosexual couples to publicly cement their relationship in a marriage and the social stigma that still attaches even if they can and do?

In other words, wouldn't the fact that homosexual relationships are and have been socially strongly discouraged tend to encourage furtive and non-committed behavior?

What do people think the effect wold be if committed heterosexual relationships were similarly discouraged?
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whac3 wrote:
For the sake of argument, let's suppose that homosexuals are as a class more promiscuous than heterosexuals; again, I'm not saying that is correct but rather postulating it for the sake of argument.

Supposing that were the case, how much would it be due to the inability of homosexual couples to publicly cement their relationship in a marriage and the social stigma that still attaches even if they can and do?

In other words, wouldn't the fact that homosexual relationships are and have been socially strongly discouraged tend to encourage furtive and non-committed behavior?

What do people think the effect wold be if committed heterosexual relationships were similarly discouraged?


I would have thought that the very thing you're saying would have cemented more homosexual relationships in an effort to 'prove us wrong' about it. But the fact remains that men in homosexual relationships, as a group, tend to have open relationships. On the other hand, heterosexuals in committed relationships don't tend to have open relationships. Some do. But most don't, and any activity outside of that relationship is covert in nature.

Now, given that most homosexuals do not believe in the truth of the Bible, I don't see why they would limit themselves to committed relationships anyway, or why we would be applying that standard to their lives when it's a heterosexual construct which strengthens the bond between a man and a woman, mostly due to the woman's need for a strong emotional attachment, which sex itself will not build but does help solidify in a relationship.

So if we took heterosexual relationships and put the same pressure on them, men would probably do what men have always done when faced with the societal impossibility of having a particular woman he wants - appeal to her directly with a romantic show of love, and run away together.

Or get horribly shot down.
 
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Jythier wrote:
I would have thought that the very thing you're saying would have cemented more homosexual relationships in an effort to 'prove us wrong' about it.


If you look at countercultures generally it's not surprising that the early gay movement emphasized a rejection of heterosexual norms, including (for many) monogamy as a virtue. As the GLBT culture has grown more mainstream this has faded.

Quote:
But the fact remains that men in homosexual relationships, as a group, tend to have open relationships. On the other hand, heterosexuals in committed relationships don't tend to have open relationships. Some do. But most don't, and any activity outside of that relationship is covert in nature.


There is a bell curve of activity among male homosexuals, as among any group. A significant number of them seek out life-partners and form monogamous relationships.

Quote:
Now, given that most homosexuals do not believe in the truth of the Bible


I'm sorry, but that's an absurd level of question-begging. If you're going to have a conversation with people you can't really just declare that "doesn't agree with my interpretation of the Bible" is the exact same thing as, "doesn't believe in the Bible".

Quote:
I don't see why they would limit themselves to committed relationships anyway


Maybe they don't see it as a limit? I don't believe in the Bible and it hasn't stopped me from committing to a monogamous marriage.
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Jythier;

I won't discuss the Jewish view of homosexuality and what Torah is talking about as that would take us down a bizarre tangent. The fact is that Torah recognizes the connection between healthy permanent relationships and sex, even when the people involved cannot for whatever reason procreate (assuming both are aware and accept that). At the same time, Torah forbids placing an undue burden on people.

So a question rabanim are dealing with in terms of Torah Law is what options should a person who is attracted only to people of the same sex have if they want to observe Torah? By Torah standards, expecting a person to be forever celibate or to enter a marriage without physical attraction (something Torah forbids) are equally unacceptable options. The rabanim have not yet reached a consensus but since it has been demonstrated that homosexuality is not a mental illness or a choice, they have been debating the question in the manner dictated by Torah from the time of Moshe Rebeinu.

So, I would ask you as a Christian, what you expect homosexuals to do? Should they be forever celibate? Should they live in a cold marriage without one of the things that is needed in a healthy marriage? To condemn someone but to give that person no realistic alternative is both morally wrong and cruel.
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Chad_Ellis wrote:
And, of course, they only measure male homosexuals because relationship fidelity among female homosexuals is much higher.

You know what they say...
What does a lesbian always pack for a second date?
A U-Haul.

*rimshot*
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whac3 wrote:
Jythier;

I won't discuss the Jewish view of homosexuality and what Torah is talking about as that would take us down a bizarre tangent. The fact is that Torah recognizes the connection between healthy permanent relationships and sex, even when the people involved cannot for whatever reason procreate (assuming both are aware and accept that). At the same time, Torah forbids placing an undue burden on people.

So a question rabanim are dealing with in terms of Torah Law is what options should a person who is attracted only to people of the same sex have if they want to observe Torah? By Torah standards, expecting a person to be forever celibate or to enter a marriage without physical attraction (something Torah forbids) are equally unacceptable options. The rabanim have not yet reached a consensus but since it has been demonstrated that homosexuality is not a mental illness or a choice, they have been debating the question in the manner dictated by Torah from the time of Moshe Rebeinu.

So, I would ask you as a Christian, what you expect homosexuals to do? Should they be forever celibate? Should they live in a cold marriage without one of the things that is needed in a healthy marriage? To condemn someone but to give that person no realistic alternative is both morally wrong and cruel.


Whenever we ask a question that contains assumptions that seem to contradict each other, we must question our assumptions.

Despite that, they ought to take it up with God, who actually knows the answers, and not me.
 
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