Misunderstanding Homosexuality

Our favorite former-militant-lesbian-feminist-turned-born-again-Christian-and-pastor’s-wife, Rosaria Butterfield, has a great post on how the church misunderstands homosexuality. By all means, read the whole thing, but I’ve got to share some of the best quotes:

From God’s point of view, homosexuality is an identity-rooted ethical outworking of a worldview transgression inherited by all through original sin.

Oof. Try and lift that sentence. Rosaria may have repented of all sorts of other past sins, but it’s obvious that she’s still, deep down, a college professor.

It’s true that temptation isn’t sin (though what you do with it may be); but that doesn’t give us biblical license to create an identity out of a temptation pattern. To do so is a recipe for disaster. This position comes directly from Sigmund Freud, who effectually replaced the soul with sexual identity as the singular defining characteristic of humanity. God wants our whole identities, not partitioned ones.

Whooaaaa!! (Here insert ten minutes of me running around high-fiving everything in sight. Wife — high five! One-month-old baby daughter — high five! Sofa — high five! Refrigerator — high five!)

Let’s roll that bit around in our heads: “…doesn’t give us biblical license to create an identity out of a temptation pattern.” That concept alone should come down on any church debate about homosexuality like a fat guy canonballing into a kiddie pool. Our sexuality — our sexual preferences, our sexual temptations — doesn’t make us who we are. We are so much more than that. To reduce human beings down to their sexual appetites is the worst kind of childish shallowness. We’re like seven-year-olds listening to the story of creation and the fall, and giggling the whole time because Adam and Eve were nekkid.

We also take heart, remembering the identity of our soul and thus rejecting the Freudian ideal that sexual identity competes with the soul. And we encourage other image-bearers to reflect the Original in knowledge, righteousness, and holiness, not in the vapid reductionism that claims image-of-God theology means he loves you just way you are, just the way your sin manifests itself.

Yes and yes. We take our cues about our nature from the Creator; not from pop psychology or Lady Gaga. When people say they were “born this way,” of course they were; we’re all born into sin, separated from God. But God, through Christ, provides the means to overcome that.

One comment

  1. Caroline

    Great post! I love R. Butterfield & her book, Secret Thoughts of an Unlikely Convert. I must agree with your thoughts; it is altogether exciting and liberating to know our identities are not wrapped up in sexual tendencies. Good stuff. I’m passing this post on to some folks who I think need to read it.
    And…kudos for high-fiving the babe. I’m sure she was delighted at her daddy’s exuberance.

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