Here’s what the Christian faith has taught for two millennia.
by Alan Shlemon
Christians, it turns out, are given a choice. One option is to approve of people satisfying same-sex desires through sexual contact. If Christians do that, they are believed to love LGBT people. The other option is to affirm Jesus’ teaching that sexual activity is reserved for a married man and woman (Matt. 19:1–4). If they do that, then Christians are believed to hate LGBT people. It’s a tiresome, false dichotomy.
A False Dichotomy
Here’s an example of this thinking. In the concluding paragraph, the author suggests that kids will either grow up believing that LGBT people are “absolutely as worthwhile and worthy of love and respect as anyone” or believing their parent’s religious tenets that LGBT people are “awful.”
Really? Are those the only two options? I know that article is just one example, but I see this thinking a lot (both in person and in print). We either approve of what someone does (somehow signaling we love them) or we hate them and they’re awful.
But here’s what the Christian faith has taught for two millennia. All human beings — including those who identify as LGBT — are made in the image of God, are intrinsically valuable, and are the pinnacle of God’s creation (Gen. 1:27). Like every person on the planet, they deserve dignity and respect. Period.
Let me briefly unpack that. If LGBT people are made in God’s image, then they bear the hallmark trait that justifies their equality with every other human being. That’s incredibly amazing and good. If LGBT people are intrinsically valuable, then they are valuable in and of themselves. There’s nothing they can say or do to diminish their value. That’s also amazing and good. If they are the pinnacle of God’s creation, then they are the highest form of creation. Again, good stuff…
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