Last week, I wrote about a Christians pastor who condemned his friend and fellow pastor for disassociating himself from a church that openly advocated the stoning of homosexuals. The church in question is the Faithful Word Baptist Church, headed up by pastor and LGBT hater Steven Anderson, who desperately wanted an AIDS free Christmas last year. Here he is extolling the virtues of mass genocide in front of his congregation:
I quoted Jesus in the article, contrasting Anderson's message of cruelty and hate with that of Christ's one of tolerance and compassion ("If you executed the homos like God recommends, you wouldn’t have all this AIDS running rampant,” vs “Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself”). The contrast is stark, but it got me wondering whether there was anything more specific about how Jesus felt about those of a different sexual orientation. After all, assholes like Anderson claim to be 'Christians' (implying they follow the teachings of Christ) so something more concrete from the (alleged) SOG would help shut these people up.
Anyhow, after discussing the issue with a gay friend and doing some research, I discovered that Jesus did have some views about those who lived alternative lifestyles that would render any Christian's prejudice against the Lesbian, Gay, Bi-sexual or Transgender community pretty much void. In Matthew 19:11, after Jesus tells his disciples that divorce is akin to adultery, they ask him whether it is better to remain single than to marry. The following interaction took place:
Jesus replied, "Not everyone can accept this word, but only those to whom it has been given.
For there are eunuchs who were born that way, and there are eunuchs who have been made eunuchs by others--and there are those who choose to live like eunuchs for the sake of the kingdom of heaven. The one who can accept this should accept it.
The term 'eunuch' (from the Greek 'Eunoukus') would normally refer to a male who has been castrated (their testicles removed), but Jesus's words imply that in biblical times, the term applied to a much broader category of people. Jesus may well have beeen referring to homosexuals (particularly given the extreme unlikeliness of being born without defined sexual organs). It seems entirely reasonable that Jesus was simply referring to people who are not heterosexual - either that, or he was speaking very specifically about transgendered people. So what can we deduce from this? Three things:
1) Jesus was definitely pro transgender. If you insist on the literal interpretation this verse then this can be your only takeaway.
2) Jesus was very likely pro gay.
3) Jesus was definitely not hung up about sexuality, sexual preference or gender identity.
It is also worth noting that if Jesus was concerned about homosexuality or any other gender/sexual orientation issue he would have spoken about it. But he didn't, and those focusing on it as a central tenant of their faith should stop calling themselves 'Christians' as they clearly cannot claim to be following the teachings of Christ.