Monthly Archives: December 2013

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Homosexual Activism – The Need for Christ-Centered Responses

“Remove not the ancient landmark, which thy fathers have set” (Prov. 22:28).

Removal of a Landmark

On 18 May 2013, France became the 14th country to legalize homosexual marriage. India is not far behind. Homosexual activism in India is gaining momentum. On 2nd July 2009, an old cultural landmark was removed[1]. The Delhi High Court overturned the 150 year old section 377 of the Indian Penal Code and legalized consensual homosexual activities between adults until the Parliament chooses to amend the law. This was despite the Government of the day not giving its consent to the issue and the masses of democratic India remaining blissfully unaware of the issues involved. The watershed decision was celebrated primarily by the LGBT sections of the society, the liberal media in India and a few supportive voices from civil society. The two-bench court cited the higher motivations of inclusiveness and understanding and equal opportunity of life to overturn this old law[2].

This landmark judgment by the High Court was a significant step towards the legal (and in some segments of society, cultural) acceptance of homosexual[3] relationships in Indian society. However, this reverberating revision of law was not deemed worthy of being discussed across the country by involving diverse voices, despite the seismic shifts that it could potentially bring to the most foundational and enduring unit of any society – the human heterosexual family. In an urban poll conducted in Sept 2009, 73% of those polled felt that homosexuality should be treated as illegal and 83% felt that homosexuality was “against Indian culture”.[4]

 

Silencing the Dissenting Voice

Given the un-representative (though legal) processes by which homosexual activists have sought to gain sanction for homosexuality in Indian society, it is not surprising that when anyone objects to homosexuality (whether on rational grounds or irrational), the person is immediately censored with thought terminating words like “homophobic” or “moral policing” pushing objectors to the back foot and cleverly tarnishing their motives without examining their arguments. Just dis-agreeing with the notion of homosexuality in the most sane and sensible way would quickly earn the arguer the label of a “bigot”! Clearly, there is more at work here than just disagreements. This is part of an apparently global strategy employed by homosexual activists to paint all those who disagree with them into a corner[5].

But is the decision on homosexuality in a country a moral issue? How can we judge others, some say. How can we impose our view of love and morality on others, say the others  Surely, those with homosexual orientation cannot help themselves since they were “born this way” (a phrase popularized by Lady Gaga[6]). Can you accuse someone of being left-handed just because the majority is right-handed? That makes sense to a lot of people today. It’s not a matter of morality but of preference or orientation, we often hear. Or is morality simply a matter of a broad or a narrow mindset (since the educated liberal richer classes in India are more open to homosexuality than the others). This is part of the larger issue that must be debated: “Does objective morality exist?”

The Double Standards of the Entertainment Industry

Recently, on 15 April 2013, Outlook India published or celebrated stories of lesbian “couples” in India. It is not an isolated story. The media is on a campaign to create a context for homosexual marriages. However, it’s interesting that the words ‘morality’ and ‘moral principle’ are used freely when topics related to financial misdemeanor, political corruption, international crime and geo-political issues are discussed. But when sex or sexual behavior is discussed, the very same people who would cry themselves hoarse about injustice in general, would dismiss morality as merely a matter of “preference”. A generally vociferous Pooja Bhat can complain earnestly that ” The moral fabric of India is tattered beyond repair” commenting on the Dec 2012 Delhi rape case, but would want to reject any notion of morality when it comes to her artistic choices and its salacious portrayals of personal or public sexual behaviour. Bhat is but a fair sample of her talented fraternity which has a moral opinion on war and copyright issues and everything else including reporters prying into their personal affairs, but sexual behaviour is dismissed as a matter of personal preference. Isn’t there a self-contradiction behind this selective application of morality?

Further, we have learnt that while we cannot change reality, we can change the words used to describe them. So ‘vulgar’ has become ‘steamy’, ‘promiscuity’ has become “foot-loose’, ‘pornography’ is now ‘adult entertainment’ and “sodomy” is “gay”! So you could be talking about a range of sexual destructive behaviours or “freedoms” but it has as little impact on your soul as discussing chocolates or vegetables. Perhaps Isaiah’s pronouncements against verbal and moral confusion are applicable here as well. He says “Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light, and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter”[7].

The Need for Passionate Prophetic Voices

Every society needs prophetic voices that will bring objective moral perspectives into mundane human situations. Those who believe that homosexual behavior is detrimental to human society (despite the genuine emotional and sexual struggles of many homosexuals[8]), must be willing to stick their neck out to argue for a society where all sexual activity outside of a heterosexual marriage is eventually counter productive. We must be willing to argue that non-heterosexual relationships are not mere deviations, but eventual destroyers of the human social network (pun not intended) as we know it. Often, we consider these issues as taboo without realizing the colossal destruction it brings on our future generations. If we can discuss the destruction of our natural habitats upfront, shouldn’t we be equally or more upfront about discussing one of the greatest threats to our social habitat – the human family.

Only those who genuinely love homosexuals and homosexual activists can enter into a rational discourse with them and debate their views. We must love all kinds of sinners without loving their sins. There is no place for pompous self-righteousness or judgemental vitriol. All human beings are imperfect, only our imperfections differ. Also, we must be equally willing to oppose heterosexual promiscuity and lack of marital faithfulness which is perhaps a far greater threat to the family as an institution than homosexuality. Else, we suffer from the disease of moral cherry picking – where we apply our moral assumptions and expectations on some issues and not on the others.

I offer two arguments for heterosexuality as the norm and the sole legitimate expression of human sexuality.[9]

  1. Health and Stability:

Two millennia ago, Jesus instructed his divorce-happy disciples, “What God has put together, let no man put asunder”[10] He dismissed the efforts of his male chauvinist circle of disciples to escape from the commitments to their spouse for any and every reason. He described it as acting against God’s divine purpose of putting a male and a female together in a heterosexual marriage.

The heterosexual union and family is the only time-tested model that has served to nourish, fulfill, protect and provide human beings, young and old, with the environment and the boundaries for growth and maturity. Ironically, every homosexual is born to heterosexuals. That itself should be sufficient to demonstrate that the heterosexual union is the original and only form of sexual union required. There is no alternative natural and wholesome environment for growing emotionally and intellectually stable children from the stage of conception till youth than the ambience of a healthy heterosexual and committed relationship[11].

To argue that, science can invent a reproductive process in the future that can eliminate sex altogether or just produce children with either the male or the female of the species, is to reduce a complex expression of heterosexual love and its fruit (having and raising children) and its social and psychological benefits to a mere mechanical process. Scientific processes may produce babies but it cannot humanize them by placing them in a context of human relationships. That requires a human family – with its only ideal and complete expression being children being nurtured by a male and a female parent.

The heterosexual parents also provide their children the wholesome experience of enjoying and learning from a father and a mother. (This also includes adopted children who become part of a heterosexual couple’s life). To deny access to parents of both genders to a child deliberately is a form of child abuse, especially since this “deviation” from the norm is happening without the child’s consent. It must be admitted that we don’t live in a perfect world and heterosexual parents are not always perfect. However, we don’t have to remain content with broken homes or a broken heterosexual marriage. If we can fix it, we must.  If heterosexual parents are failing, then they need to be restored and families set on the path to healing.  Homosexual activists clamouring for “rights” to “homosexual marriage” and start a “homosexual family” cleverly hide the fact that their “marriage” and “family” bear no resemblance to the traditional notions and indeed are diametrically opposed to them. Imagine the psychological challenges for a child who goes to school who has two “mothers”, because the two “mothers” wanted to pursue an un-natural relationship for self-fulfillment and got a male sperm to artificially impregnate one of them?!! This whole plot is not only un-natural but unfair to the emotional stability of the children involved. And Hollywood has a self-consciously titled Oscar nominated movie to convince us otherwise[12]

2. Purpose

To quote Jesus again, the male and female bodies are clearly designed for sexual intimacy to the point of oneness by excluding every other relationship from it[13]. For this intimacy a man ought to prioritizes his wife over every other relationship that he had know till then or will know later.  This is the original and only true sexual fit.

Human physical intimacy has purpose beyond pleasure. How do we know? Because of the way human intimacy is designed- to procreate. Not simply to reproduce (like bacteria) but to co-create a human being with a unique identity. Every human being living is evidence that someone once had physical intimacy and the baby lived to tell the tale. Without procreation, societies will become extinct species. So physical intimacy is a unique personal pleasure that has the option of looking beyond itself.

That’s of course true of almost all creatures in some sense, but humans uniquely think in terms of purpose and faithfulness as “moral obligations” not only to those involved in the sexual act but to those born as a result of it. Animals often have multiple sexual partners simultaneously or abandon their young ones early, but we don’t call it cheating or call animals to moral accountability! Human physical intimacy is not just another form of animal passion. Human physical intimacy contains within it the possibility of love, commitment and responsibility as long as “death does us apart”. But at-least the animals can pro-create. Even though they don’t co-create, since they are largely ruled by instinct.

In contrast, homosexuals simulate sex by activity which has no relationship to the design and purpose connotations of the word. It is like imitation jewelry – a pretender, though it brings pleasure to the one who wears it.

 

Ajoy Varghese is Board of Director, MLS Business Centers India Pvt Ltd.

 


[1] Arguably, past Indian cultures have been ambivalent about sexual choices, but at no point was legal sanction accorded to homosexuality as a alternative and legitimate practice in popular culture as it is done today.

[2] While democratic processes should ideally prevail to decide if homosexuality should be legal in India, it would require more than legal reasoning to come to a decision whether homosexuality is morally acceptable or not.

[3] This article uses the term homosexuality to refer to sexual behaviors between members of the same sex-whether male or female. It does not include behavior like transvestitism or the category of trans-gendered peoples.

[4] http://prernalal.com/2009/09/changing-homophobic-attitudes-in-india/

[5] http://www.massresistance.org/docs/issues/gay_strategies/overhauling.html

[6] Lady Gaga commits the classic logical fallacy of confusing categories when she clubs race with sexual behavior in her song “Born this way”. Even if the argument is accepted that some people are born homosexual (and there is no evidence yet to support this claim), race does not have an element of choice, while sexual behavior and acts are always a choice.

[7] Isaiah 5:20

[8] We must differentiate between the homosexual who is struggling with his sexuality and seeks the space and freedom to practice it and the homosexual activists who insist that homosexuality must be provided the same space, rights, benefits, status and expressions in our society as heterosexual unions as an alternative and equally acceptable lifestyle. The homosexual deserves our friendship and interaction but the activist needs to be resisted using legal and moral options available as he seeks to tamper with time-honored notions through the back-door of the media, the entertainment industry and judicial over-reach.

[9] There are obviously many more positive arguments for heterosexuality. However, given the narrow scope of this article, only the broad generic arguments which would possibly aid the most number of people have been included. Arguments against homosexuality are important but are not discussed in this article.

[10] Mt 19:6(b)

[11] Mal 3:15 – “Has not the one God made you? You belong to him in body and spirit. And what does the one God seek? Godly offspring. So be on your guard, and do not be unfaithful to the wife of your youth”.

[12] “The Kids are All right”(2010) directed by Lisa Cholodenko

[13]  Mt 19: 5 – “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh”

Harvest Times for Your Family June 2013/Volume 10 Issue 6

Need a one stop resource to help discern God’s mind on the sexual options available today? Check out the book on Homosexual Patnerships – http://glsindia.com/shopping/books/homosexual-partnerships/

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Book Review of 'Be a Better Dad Today!'

Book Review

Indian Edition of US#1 National Best Seller

Book on Fatherhood- 10 Tools Every Father Needs

By The Honorable Gregory W Slayton

Foreword by Charles H Colson

 Published in November 2013 by GLS Publishing, Mumbai, Price Rs.300/-  USD 6. Buy online http://glsindia.com/shopping/books/be-a-better-dad-today/

 

Fatherhood- The Most important job a man will ever have!

 

Fatherhood is the most important job that any of us— including the President of the United States or the CEO of the world’s largest company—will ever have. It is the only role in life for which we are truly indispensable. Our futures, our family and our entire society depend on the job we do as a dad.

 

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Synopsis of Biblical Principles of Leadership

There are many leadership books available today in the market. They cover every conceivable aspect of the topic and the ordinary reader longs for something simple yet effective. Written in the context of the 21st century church, this book has the Bible as the only basis for its teaching. Biblical Principles of Leadership is both a text book for students on Christian leadership and a handbook of pastoral ministry for pastors.

Alexander Kurian firmly believes that Leadership is ‘The exercise of one’s spiritual gifts under the call of God to serve a certain group of people in achieving the goals God has given them toward the end of glorifying Christ.’ This belief is clearly reflected in the topics covered by Dr. Kurian. He has returned back to the Bible and drawn out its teaching on matters relating to the principles of church leadership.

The author is straight forward in his writing and calls the church out on its failures over time. However, he does so with a view to correct rather than criticize. This goes a long way to set the book apart from all the other titles on the book shelf.

You will find this book as a clear guide to understand God’s design for spiritual leaders. We are sure you will appreciate its excellent content. The book’s overall biblical orientation and practical relevance make it a top choice for exploring the basics of spiritual leadership.

Be sure to buy it, read it and recommend it to others. It will be a welcome addition in your library. Yes, you will find it helpful.

 

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