Just read someone's LJ post essentially bringing up the NT clobber passages and asking for them to be rebutted for, oh, the sixty thousandth time.
1 Corinthians 6:9-11
"Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God."
I love the end of that, because it completely sums up our beliefs! It also proves two points: The practice of homosexuality is a sin, and it can be washed away with Jesus' blood, just like EVERY other sin. Homosexuality is no different, and God judges all sins equally, although I can't remember the verse reference for that right now, sorry.
Frankly I'm sick of having to justify my existence to everyone with the bright idea of "but there's no such thing as a gay Christian! You're either gay OR Christian!" It speaks of such a gross misunderstanding of what it means to be gay and to be Christian that I don't even know where to start.
What do they mean by "the practice of homosexuality"? Gay sex? Fine, then, what's "sex"? Am I allowed anything up to third base? Can I kiss my girlfriend? Cheek only? Hold her hand? Should we wear hazmat suits around each other to ward off the mere possibility of teh 3v1l l3sb1an s3xx0rz? This is probably even harder to answer for a lesbian, since our sex lives don't involve penises (at least the sort not made of silicone, which are optional in any case), so by community standards we might not even be having Real Sex, whatever the hell that is.
Or on the flip side, am I totally disbarred from falling in love, full stop? That's a burden not laid on even totally celibate straight single Christians. If you want me to be totally physically and emotionally celibate without any hope of being otherwise, you damn well better give me a better reason than "'Cause homosexuality is wrong, of course. Haven't you read the Bible?"
Paul saw pagans banging anything that moved below them on a social hierarchy and spoke against it. What does this have to do with me being in a committed monogamous loving relationship with someone of my own sex? Nothing, thank you, and I hate having to qualify any relationship I might have as "committed and monogamous and loving." As far as I know, Christians don't have big political hissy fits over nonmonogamous hetero marriages of convenience.
I have seen Christians who don't believe in the existence of God who join a church as a political move field fewer questions as to their legitimacy as Christians. When did my sex life (or lack thereof) become a better measure of my faith than my faith?
As well, what sin exactly would Jesus be washing away from me? My entire sense of sexuality, or just my homosexually oriented clitoris? Will the blood of the Lamb brainwash me into finding a nice Christian man to lay back and think of England with?
I remember finding Dobson's "The Strong-Willed Child" on my parents' bookshelf when I was, oh, ten or so. I spirited it away to read it to see what it was about.
Once I was done, I was so appalled that I hid it. Granted, they probably bought it in an bid to deal with Dymphna, who was (and still is, despite the book) a self-centered brat. But I think their techniques came to full fruition in their dealing with my brother Ignatius and me.
I had another friend in high school whose parents used the Dobson Method and spanked her and her brother with a paint-stirring stick. She eventually took the stick and hid it under her bed, whereupon her parents would find another spanking implement. Lather, rinse, repeat.
Essentially Dobson describes any child with ANY modicum of self-will (a child who "does not obey orders without question," as an example, is apparently a BAD thing) as a child to be
abused "disciplined" and "directed" to realize that might makes right their parents are to be obeyed without question.
Ignatius and I have the trait in common of questioning orders. Neither of us has a problem with obeying, per se, but we do want to know WHY we're doing something. If we're told "Because I said so" or "because your mother asked you to," we're more than likely to resist because an answer like that is an insult to our intelligence-- and if there's one way my siblings and I are all alike, it's that we are far from unintelligent.
Dobson treats any kind of question as a "challenge to authority." This really sucks when you're the kind of kid that questions everything.
I don't know where the hell I got this idea, since it obviously wasn't at home, but I have a sort of personal policy of never giving anyone my respect until they've actually earned it. Not that I actively disrespect someone, but if you want to give me orders, expect to have to back them up until you've proven yourself the kind of person I can trust not to give stupid orders, and expect to lose that privilege the first time you give me a stupid order. In my mind, no one gains authority merely because of their position. (This is likely why I have such a problem with the traditional idea of 'headship.' I don't see how being born with a penis automatically grants you leader status in any relationship, much less one that's supposed to be a partnership.)
I think a lot of parents use this as a defense maneuver. As long as they don't have to answer any questions, they never have to worry about having answers to begin with. They are Right, not by any standard of logic or truth, but by Fiat Parentis. If your kid wants to know why she should clean her room, it's not because messy rooms can be a health hazard (which, honestly, I probably was the kind of kid who would have accepted that kind of reason) but because You Said So. If the kid wants to know why she shouldn't be friends with Megan, it's not because you don't like her skater haircut or vaguely punky fashion, but because You Said So. If she wants you to understand that she does, in fact, like girls instead of boys, you can reject this not because it doesn't match with your worldview or your vicarious plans for her, but because You Said So.
I remember in particular that my parents, particularly my mom, would either laugh at me or accuse me of "playing the victim" if I cried. Given that I cry if I'm frustrated, and trying to reason with parents who wouldn't give me any better reason than "Because I'm the parent and you're the child" was infinitely frustrating, and being laughed at is rather hurtful when you're a sobbing twelve- or eight- or five-year-old, it would just make me sob harder. We would reach a point where they would be ordering me to stop crying and I would be physically unable to either do so or explain that I could not just turn the tears off like a faucet.
I hesitate to label it abuse, though I've had friends I told describe it as such, but it was a fairly traumatic thing for a sensitive kid, and in retrospect, it's definitely a Dobsonesque thing to refer to any non-approved action on the part of the child, no matter how normal and reasonable it is, as a challenge to authority rather than a sign of developing personality.
I suppose I would be skirting Godwin's Law of Debate to mention that we don't exactly laud Nazi soldiers for obeying orders without question.
Unconditional Cruelty: Parents Gone Wild
They Dared to Discipline