Mormons and Homosexuals

Here is the official Church position on gay marriage. Is this anti-gay? Does it call for denying God-given and inalienable rights to gay people? Just exactly what right is being denied here? How is it that so many centuries have gone by without anyone noticing that these "rights" were being denied? If the denial of these rights is unconstitutional today, why hasn't it been unconstitutional since the Constitution was ratified in 1789? Has the Constitution changed so that what was constitutional once is now unconstitutional? What changed?

Perhaps most important, what is untrue or unloving about what the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints says in this official statement on gay marriage? I don't see any evidence of bigotry, prejudice or lack of charity in it. On the contrary, it seems to want what is best for the long-term happiness of everyone, especially gay people.

Here is the official Church statement taken directly from the Church website:

First Presidency Statement on Same-Gender Marriage
19 October 2004SALT LAKE CITY — The First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has issued the following statement:

"We of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints reach out with understanding and respect for individuals who are attracted to those of the same gender. We realize there may be great loneliness in their lives but there must also be recognition of what is right before the Lord.

"As a doctrinal principle, based on sacred scripture, we affirm that marriage between a man and a woman is essential to the Creator's plan for the eternal destiny of His children. The powers of procreation are to be exercised only between a man and a woman lawfully wedded as husband and wife.

"Any other sexual relations, including those between persons of the same gender, undermine the divinely created institution of the family. The Church accordingly favors measures that define marriage as the union of a man and a woman and that do not confer legal status on any other sexual relationship."

I find it hard to understand how anyone including gay activists could find anything objectionable about this statement and position. Just what do they expect from a Church that considers the Bible and the Book of Mormon to be the sacred Word of God? Are gay people just anti-religion? Or perhaps merely anti-Christian? Or perhaps merely anti-Catholic, anti-Mormon and anti-Baptist? What? Inquiring minds want to know.

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18 Responses to Mormons and Homosexuals

  1. Trevor says:

    Homosexuality has no victim? That idea needs to be rethought. I’ve worked closely with homosexuals in a clinical setting. These days being gay or bisexual is a fad or trend like wearing Nikes. Personal choice is clearly the cause in these persons. However, the precurser to homosexual attraction is revealed by honest persons of such desires to be sexual stimulation/abuse at a young age by a same sex person, or massive physical abuse by an opposite sex person. That is the dirty little secret that homosexuals want to hide and try desperately to cope with all their lives… until they come to Christ with pure intent and full submission to His will, as He did to His Father’s will. Trust me, I know that is the only course that brings complete happiness (not the counterfeit happiness of physical pleasure). People are “born gay” as often as people are born with full blown alcoholism or porn addiction or gambling addiction or food addiction. The plight of the gay person is terrible because the true struggle is in their minds just like any “addict” (which I know to be= a person who has completely submitted to the will of the adversary through the influence he has over the flesh, in at least one specific temptation). Often the acting out is an attempt by the “addict” to solve or understand what has happened to them in a misguided way. Conflicts of intense emotions and irrational thoughts mixed with twisted memories burden the homosexual, just as it burdens any other “addict”. They look for confirmation and justification for the way they feel in the world around them. The “peace that passes all understanding” can only be found in Christ and living His Gospel with trust in Him, NOT yourself, fellowman or woman, or society and its institutions. God established His true church here in these days so that all could come to Him and learn truth and worship Him in truth and spirit, NOT error and lies. The prophets lead the way pointing to Christ and teach the correct way to follow Him to the end. The problem is that any “addict” no matter the substance (drugs, porn, food, money, men, women, children or self- the sex addict always objectifies/de-personalizes the object of their desire/lust and that fuels the hate they feel internally and turn outwardly) does not have the ability to accept these truths. They live in an inner world of deceit, half-truths, misunderstandings, and illusion and CANNOT discern their error! The homosexual deceives him/herself into believing that if they just had marriage, or the trappings of legitimacy, then they would be happy, their partner would no longer be an object of pleasure to them but a person again. It is a lie though. The problem is still buried under it all waiting to manifest, unless they begin to turn to the Healer, their Savior and trust that He can cure them of the angst, the pain (even the pleasure derived in unnatural or inappropriate associations), the hurt from others and the self, the memories that taught lies and bring to mind destroyed innocence. He can do it. He has done it. I witness from personal experience: Christ has the power of salvation and always will! His true Church cannot support individuals in living lies and will always support any individual in their quest for things that are of “good report and praise-worthy.” Things that can help a person return to God and enjoy the peace and love and enjoyment that we all truly desire and are seeking for, even in our often misguided efforts.

  2. Ujlapana says:

    Last I checked, gonads aren’t capable of thought, but then again, neither are many opponents of “gay rights.”

    Are you asserting that Steven B. is gay? Or that I am? I don’t know about Steven, but all I see is someone who is capable of thinking from another person’s perspective. I don’t have to be gay (and am not) in order to think, “how would I feel about statements like this if I were gay?” It’s part of being a mature adult to be able to see others as genuine people, rather than one-dimensional stereotypes (e.g. Gays, child molesters, murderers–what’s the difference?) I doubt you’re engaging any gay people in debate on this blog because someone who is gay would probably find you too offensive to deal with–like a black person debating with a Grand Dragon from the KKK.

    Do you really think gays want to “rub us all out?” I haven’t seen any push to make heterosexual marriage illegal. I just haven’t seen it. I have, on the other hand, seen a gay man pistol-whipped and left for dead near the heartland of Zion.

    Here’s a question for you to ponder, John. When did you decide to like women? Funny, I can’t remember ever sitting back and thinking, “Which will I go with, women or men?” It’s a ridiculous idea. You naturally wanted to date/marry/etc. with women. So did I. But some people apparently do not. Why on earth would they choose a life of marginalization and mockery? It may not be genetic, but it certainly isn’t premeditated!

    Do gays have special rights? No, of course not. They have the same rights everyone else has–free association. The government has no place saying who can be married to whom. A religion is free to be as anti-gay as it wants to be (no gay marriages in *our* temples), but no one has a place to coerce people one way or the other. Marriage isn’t something governments should be passing laws about at all.

    Jonah, do you really think homosexuality (which has no victim) is like the list you give above? There is a serious flaw in moral reasoning to fail to recognize victimization vs. free agency. Of course, as the Book of Mormon teaches, God *has* come around on murder before–at least when the victim is drunk and asleep.

  3. Jonah, there is no point in continuing this thread unless for the entertainment value. Gay people, like most of us, cannot think objectively about this topic. About this topic, they think with their gonads. As a result, there is nothing that either you nor I nor anyone could say that would make a difference. They do not have the rights they claim. They are not a legitimate “minority” any more than compulsive gamblers are a “minority.” And most homosexual don’t think they are sinning because they have convinced themselves that they were “born that way” and have no control over their urges. They believe that they have to be gay in much the same way that they have to keep on eating and breathing.

    They think that all heterosexuals are the enemy. They hate us. The only ones they can stand at all are the ones they can manipulate into acknowledging these alleged “rights” that they do not have. The do not even know what “rights” are or where they come from.

    They call us homophobes, but the fact is that all of them are heterophobes. They would rub us all out in an instant if there were enough of them to do so because they think we are a threat to them. The only reason they don’t do it now is because they still don’t have enough political power to do so.

    When we engage them in this kind of back and forth, we may have a lot of fun saying what has become politically dangerous for us to say at work or school. But the fact is, we are not accomplishing anything good. We are just fanning the flames of their hatred towards us.

    I didn’t want to start an argument with these people. I just wanted to put the official Church statement on gay marriage up where all could see it and I could point out that there is nothing anti-gay in the statement. As you have already so wisely pointed out, it is just an anti-sin statement.

  4. Steven B. says:

    Jonah, if the statement recommended support of legal “measures” aimed at reducing sin in the general population, then we could say that the statement is “anti-sin.” But in this case, the statement specifically targets an oppressed minority subset of the population–gay people. It incourages legal measures to prohibit gay people (LDS or not) from marrying. Don’t kid youself or obfuscate that it is anything other than an anti-gay document.

    Not to belabor the point, but this is how I read the text:

    “We of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints patronize gay people and consider their lives to be not right with the Lord.

    “As a doctrinal principle, based on sacred scripture, we affirm that heterosexual marriage is essential to the Creator’s plan for the eternal destiny of His children. Only lawfully wedded heterosexuals may have sex.

    “Any other sexual relations, including gay sex, undermine the divinely created institution of the family. The Church accordingly favors legal measures that define marriage as the union of heterosexuals only and that do not confer legal status on gay relationships.”

  5. Jonah the giant whale says:

    You kow, its anti-murder, child molestation, and infedelity too. The church’s statement is not anti Gay, its anti Sin.

  6. Steven B. says:

    Without arguing whether homosexuality is right or wrong, the question John asked is whether the church’s statement on SSM is anti-gay. I tried to offer what a gay perspective might look like. If the plan of happiness and exaltation, marriage, sex, families and legal status are all reserved only for heterosexuals, I’d say the entire statement is anti-gay.
    Then all the comments have focused on how evil, wicked and entirely contrary to God’s will homosexuality is, with analogies to murder, rape, incest, child molestation, pederasty and sex with animals. I’d say that sounds anti-gay as well. What other logical conclusion would a person draw?

  7. Jonah the giant whale says:

    Wow, maybe one day he will come around to murder, rape, incest, and child molestation.

  8. Ujlapana says:

    Why does this all sound so similar to the struggles with blacks and the priesthood in the 1970’s? I know, blacks aren’t denied the priesthood in the Bible, but we had modern prophet-leaders (even better) who were confirming that God wanted things this way. Brigham Young even foretold that every white male would have to hold the priesthood before blacks could (sometime in the millenium). But then someone, somehow, convinced God to change His mind. I guess that plays into the eternal progression of Godhood?

    Maybe God will come around on this one, too. What’s the point of being a parent if you can’t learn from your kids?

  9. Confusion is probably my favorite term for much of the false philosophy commonly expounded on the Internet, especially when the writer is defending so-called “gay rights.” What a misnomer!

  10. Jonah the giant whale says:

    Steven, you are saying that homosexuality is not wrong, and that all churches should accept it. The Church says that it is wrong, and that god has said so on numerous occasions.

    We believe the word of God. We believed him when he said Murder is wrong. We believed him when he said not to covet our neighbor’s wife. We believed him when he said infidelity is wrong.

    And I have a feeling you did too. Because you want to be religious and have a close relationship with your heavenly father. You wouldn’t dream of committing murder, or stealing. or any of those things.

    Alas though it is a package deal. As much as it would be nice to pick and choose what we want to believe, we cannot. We have to accept the lord in our hearts, and once we know what he has said is right, and what he has said is wrong, we have to follow those things.

    It isn’t the Church saying homosexuality is wrong, it isn’t the members, it isn’t me, it is the Lord.

    THE THIRD BOOK OF MOSES CALLED

    LEVITICUS

    22 Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination.
    23 Neither shalt thou lie with any beast to defile thyself therewith: neither shall any woman stand before a beast to lie down thereto: it is confusion.

  11. To the extent that individuals ask the Church to change its position vis-a-vis homosexuality (or, for that matter, sexuality in general), what is really being asked is for the Church to abandon its scriptures and its concept of divine revelation, not only as to leaders, but as to all members. In other words, the Church is being asked to repudiate the very concept and person of God in order to bring to it some level of worldly acceptance. Can doctrine be so easily negotiated or bargained? And when doctrine comes forth out of the mouth of God, as we boldly say it does, can it be negotiated at all? –Sandy

  12. Steven B. says:

    With all due respects, John, you have just lumped homosexuals together with child molesters, male pederasts, and people who have sex with animals. And you just can’t see why gay people feel unwelcome among the Latter-day Saints. There is no sense discussing both sides to this issue as we will just talk past each other.

  13. Great comment, Jonah. I’m sure there are child molesters and men who prefer the company of young boys who also have “rights” they would like all of us to respect. I once had a next door neighbor who was having an affair with his family’s German Shepherd. Maybe we should get the Supreme Court to find some “rights” for him in our Constitution too.

    God approves of what is right, and He disapproves of what is wrong. And since God is the source of all our rights, and the Constitution and Bill of Rights merely acknowledge and protect rights that we already have because all men are born with them, it seems clear to me that no one has any “rights” except what God believes is right. And he clearly doesn’t believe that homosexual behavior, bestiality, or sex with minors is right.

    It is amazing how confused some people can become once basic principles have been abandoned. I’m sure those who drafted our Constitution are highly offended by some of the creative interpretations of that document in recent Supreme Court decisions.

    Homosexuals have exactly the same rights that the rest of us have, to marry someone of the opposite sex. The idea that they have special rights is absurd. In fact, the whole concept of special rights is absurd. Either all men and women have the same rights, or none of them have any rights. And their rights are whatever God says they are.

    There is no such thing as gay rights.

  14. Jonah the giant whale says:

    [i]The following text is Sarcasm.[/i]

    I like to be promiscuous. I see nothing wrong with having multiple partners. The church is narrow minded and bigoted against people who prefer an open life style. Why can’t I have sex with other woman, even though I am married? And still receive all the blessings of the Lord.

    [i] End Sarcasm[/i]

    Oh wait. It is because the LORD said it was WRONG and NOT to do it. So if you believe in the Lord you need to do what he says.

    My big problem with a lot of so called Christians is that they look at Gospel like it is a buffet. They take a little here, take a little there, and leave what they don’t like.

    You. Can’t. Do. That.

    You either believe in the gospel or you don’t. If you feel that you are gay (and yes, it is a choice), and you believe in god, you have to follow the same rules that everyone else does.

    Black, white, gay, hetro, American, or Australlian we are all under the same rules.

    [i] Mosiah 3: 19
    19 For the natural man is an enemy to God, and has been from the fall of Adam, and will be, forever and ever, unless he yields to the enticings of the Holy Spirit•, and putteth off the natural man and becometh a saint through the atonement of Christ the Lord, and becometh as a child, submissive, meek, humble, patient, full of love, willing to submit to all things which the Lord seeth fit to inflict upon him, even as a child doth submit to his father.[/i]

    Premarital sex, infidelity, homosexuality, these are all things of the NATURAL man. They are an abomination before God. Its not okay just because you think it should be. The Church has just as strong feelings toward infidelity as it does homosexuality. Both ARE SINFUL.

  15. Jim Cobabe says:

    Steven B, thanks for your response. You clearly have a handle on a certain popular homosexual viewpoint.

    Looking at it from that posture, it amazes me that any person embracing such a philosophy can afford to be concerned about church policy on homosexuality. From that perspective, church policy necessarily has to be perceived as an offensive bigoted attack on homosexuals. Else the church’s real message, that homosexuality, as all other human behaviors, is subject to certain bounds of righteous behavior set by divine commands, and that all sinners must repent.

    Obviously, such a person’s major concerns are focused on the fact that the church fails to adequately serve the specific demands and self-identified “needs” of those with such views. But as John spells out, the church teaches that there is already an appropriate gospel niche designed for those with such needs. That it is not a comfortable accomodation for those who insist on something else is inarguable.

    To me, it seems like the ridiculous scenario of a traveller checking into a hotel and demanding extravagant and exclusive concessions that no hotel could be reasonably prepared to grant. Knock down all the walls, I want all the space to myself, remove the elevators and appoint servants to carry me up and down the stairs whenever I command. Serve me exotic dishes at a moment’s notice. Refurbish the place at your expense to accomodate my tastes. And if you fail to please me, you obviously don’t understand homosexuals, and are just engaging in narrow bigotry.

    From my perspective homosexual activists come across as a minor group of whiners. They seem to think the sun should revolve around them. It seems likely that angry outspoken activists don’t even accurately represent the group they presume to speak for. It would be interesting to know just how many there are who have engaged in homosexual acts that would elect Steven’s representation, and how many would prefer the current policy and teachings of the church.

    All that said, it is very easy to encapsulate the whole problem in very simple terms.

    Homosexual acts are sinful behavior.
    Wickedness never was happiness.
    All sinners are invited to repent and turn to Christ.
    We will thereby find the joy and happiness we seek.

  16. Steven B. says:

    Oh, Sorry about using the word “narrow.” Don’t let it ruffle your feathers.

  17. Steven B. says:

    You can only see through your narrow LDS viewpoint. Here is the view from the other side.

    “We of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints reach out with understanding and respect for individuals who are attracted to those of the same gender.

    The Church does not reach out with understanding or respect for gay and lesbian individuals. Church leaders have barely gotten beyond referring to the word homosexual as an “adjective” only. They still think homosexuals are confused about their gender. Such rhetoric only betrays a lack of understanding. If church leaders truly respected its gay members they would at least make an effort to learn what homosexuality is.

    We realize there may be great loneliness in their lives but there must also be recognition of what is right before the Lord.

    Read: The church is a club for heterosexuals.

    marriage between a man and a woman is essential to the Creator’s plan for the eternal destiny of His children

    Read: The Plan of Happiness and Exaltation is reserved only for heterosexuals.

    The powers of procreation are to be exercised only between a man and a woman lawfully wedded as husband and wife.

    Read: Marriage is a private institution reserved only for heterosexuals. Sex is only for heterosexuals.

    Any other sexual relations, including those between persons of the same gender, undermine the divinely created institution of the family.

    Read: If gay people have sex the institution of the family will collapse. Families are only for heterosexuals.

    The Church accordingly favors measures that define marriage as the union of a man and a woman and that do not confer legal status on any other sexual relationship.

    Read: Marriage is a cliub for heterosexuals. Legislation must inforce the exclusivity of the heterosexual club.

  18. Eric says:

    Thanks for this John. I agre with you. What I have been surprised by lately is how many apparent members on the ‘nacle seem to be confused about what the church teaches on this.

    However, you mention the Book of Mormon. Are there direct scripture in the BOM that address this? I can’t think of any off the top.

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