Rational scientists and homosexual dogmatism
Published: 6 June 2015 (GMT+10)
After reading National Geographic claims creationists are at war with science, M.D. from Australia sent us this encouraging note:
Great response to the National Geographic "War on Science" article.
I thought it was ironic that those who believe the Ebola virus may mutate and become airborne are considered cranks, (which they may well be) whilst those who believe that dinosaurs mutated and became airborne are considered rational scientists.
Keep up the good work,
Also, Mathias G., from the U.S., asked for help responding to his fellow students’ aggressive decrees regarding homosexuality.
I am in college, and recently I have been hearing more and more claims about homosexuality. I have read nearly every article on the site concerning the matter, but I haven’t found answers. The questions I often hear touted here are "how do you know your sexuality unless you experiment?" and "everyone is a little bit bisexual." How can I counter such claims? Additionally, once I was speaking with my roommate and his girlfriend about it. I used every rational, biological, and psychological reason why homosexuality harms the individual. But for some reason, they didn’t listen, and instead my roommate asked me to never speak about it with her again! I have respected the request, but I feel betrayed. No real friend would do this, I think. Now they and their friends constantly talk about the topic, but I remain silent. Is this right?
CMI’s Keaton Halley responds:
Thanks for the inquiry.
When you say you haven’t found answers, do you mean that you haven’t found anything helpful or persuasive to you, or do you mean that you haven’t found anything that has ultimately persuaded your friends? Because it may be that even an excellent argument will fail to persuade your friends. I recommend that you read The ‘knockout punch’ syndrome, Anyone for tennis? and Handling aggressive atheists to help you see that the problem may be hard-heartedness on the part of your friends, not necessarily poor arguments on your part.
I don’t think it is right that your friends can’t even tolerate you disagreeing with them and voicing your opinion (presuming you’ve been respectful toward them). It’s fair to tell them respectfully that you shouldn’t have to remain silent if they continue to talk about it. And I don’t think you should accept all the burden of proof. If they say that "everyone is a little bit bisexual", ask them what evidence they have for that claim. And if they say you can’t know your sexuality without experimentation, ask them why they believe that. But if they can’t substantiate the claims, then you can point out you have no reason to accept those claims.
Second, you can also ask about the relevance of the claims. For example, if everyone is a little bit bisexual, would that make it okay? Christians believe 100% of people are sinners, but that doesn’t prove that sin is okay. Or if experimentation was required before one could know what sexual desires they are capable of, would that make all those sexual desires good? Of course not.
Third, you can say you have reason to deny their claims, since they are contrary to the reported experience of most people. Most people do not identify themselves as a little bit bisexual, but have strong attractions to one gender. Note, this is even true of those homosexuals who claim they can’t change and are only attracted to people of the same sex. (Of course, we do not accept that their sexual desires, much less behaviors, are necessarily fixed and immutable, but I’m just making the point that many homosexuals would also disagree that they are slightly bisexual.) And most people, whether they identify as heterosexual or homosexual, make claims about their sexual preference based on their inner desires, without having to experiment first. So these claims are actually quite preposterous and contrary to common sense.
You said that you have read most of the articles on creation.com about homosexuality, but you might also want to pick up the booklet, Gay Marriage: right or wrong? And who decides?, which answers many of the common pro-homosexual arguments and shows how a proper view of marriage and sexuality is rooted in the Genesis account of creation. But, again, there’s no magic bullet argument that is guaranteed to change your secular friends. That’s okay, because your job is merely to lovingly present the truth and leave the job of changing their hearts to the Holy Spirit. If they continue to treat you with disdain, it may be time to end the dialogue and move on (Matt. 7:6).
I hope that’s helpful.
I think I have been misunderstood. Of course homosexuality has nothing to do with a Christian lifestyle. My remark was 'a latere' comment, an hyperbole, to realize how homosexuality is totally out of discussion even to an atheist sphere. Homosexuality IS A SIN against nature. And my invitation to an eventual human born under such a kind of 'mutation' would have to suffer celibacy in view of eternal life in God's kingdom, would be the only possible way to bear it like any other physical or mental defect. Yet addressed with humility and consideration.
I admit that I may not be totally following your argument, but I don't see how your reply avoids the constructive criticisms I offered. I'm posting so readers can decide for themselves.
OK, let's for the sake of the argument accept that all women are lesbians and all men are homosexual (a part that homosexuality refers to both sexes, and for reproduction a male third party may offer the solution), what would happen to humanity? In a couple of generations it would end up in a thin air. Again, the solution would be the bank sperm - which would fed by homosexual semen. Doesn't all of it looks totally unnatural? A society of homosexuals that unnaturally reproduces itself. And it would be a phenomenon related ONLY to humans, because the rest of the animal world still is going about males and females. Our friends the homosexuals may oppose that there will always be a number of heterosexuals to balance the situation; would the whole matter anyhow pinpoint the out of place status? So these 'unfortunate' humans should accept their situation as abnormal, and being brotherly pitied with respect and care - as it is done with the disabled. (To those homos who are Christians, Jesus declares them blessed if they accept their celibacy in view of the Kingdom - Matthew 19:12) Of course the legalization of their status and all the facilities of a normal family as required by the Law would be out of place.
I actually don't think these are very strong arguments against homosexual practices. We are unlike animals in many respects, and humanity couldn't survive if everyone was celibate either. So those considerations alone don't tell us that homosexuality is wrong or harmful. The real problem is that it violates God's design for marriage and family and therefore brings harm to individuals and society. I recommend our Gay Marriage booklet for a more compelling case against homosexuality.
Also, I would be careful about using the term "homosexual" to refer to someone who merely experiences same-sex attraction. The Bible indicates that being a homosexual is inconsistent with being a Christian (see 1 Cor. 6:9–11), so it must be applying that term only to those who live a lifestyle that is characterized by sinfully giving in to this temptation, whether in thought or deed. Biblically, then, a homosexual Christian is an impossibility, just like a Christian liar or a Christian adulterer. Even though there are Christians who have committed those sins and wrestle with those sins, their lives are not characterized by them. But when we let the world define a homosexual as anyone who even struggles with the temptation, it rhetorically lends credence to the idea that being homosexual is part of their fundamental identity and cannot be changed. But that is false.
Wow I never thought my email would actually get published. :) That's pretty cool actually. However I still have a question. The problem of Lesbianism seem to have much fewer articles on the site, and so I am underprepared in this field. From what I have read here, I'm afraid I still don't know to counter those types of arguments. The health risk is not nearly as high, so what can I say?
With lesbianism, there are still serious health risks. Statistically, even recognized medical authorities like the Mayo Clinic acknowledge that lesbians are more prone to mental health problems, abuse, etc. than heterosexual women. But our objection to it is first and foremost a moral one. Even if there were no health risks this practice would still violate God's design for the family, and is explicitly condemned in Scripture (Romans 1:26, for example).
But God's plan for the family is not only right, it works best. A relationship between two women lacks the masculinity that is supposed to be part of the complementarity God built into marriage (which ought to represent Christ and the church—Ephesians 5:32). Two women can't procreate without involving a third party, which means the child will not have a father who is married to his mother. The father may only provide the DNA and not be involved in the child's life at all. Anyway, we can't be exhaustive here, but these are the sorts of problems the homosexual lifestyle introduces, which are bad for both individuals and society.
Good response - wisdom is paramount when engaging those who negate God and speak cordially about their espoused better moral commitments. I like to expose the irrationally of the "how do you know unless you try ?" position
1. It is impossible to "try" this supporting claim by it's own standard. So it is arbitrary
2. This outlook requires that people have sufficient capacity to "know" things autonomously. (Man is in charge and can legislate what is right) At the same time the question contains an admission that people don't know unless they have tried - or have experience of something. This is an irresolvable tension.
3. By analogy I cannot know whether doing some things are good or bad. Maybe I should try to grab the high voltage wire.
4. Experience rests on beliefs that are beyond empirical verification - such as uniformity, laws of logic, future will be like the past, reliability of human memory and so on.
Since the neccesary supports for the "how do you know unless you try?" must be accepted without "trying them." In addition these beliefs about reality are beyond sense verification. It follows that the question is dishonest.
Those who utilize this argument reveal that they are willing to give up rationality so they can do whatever they want. But they will not give up this rationality at the bank.
Try as he might man cannot hide reality - he is an image bearer!
Ex-homosexual testimonies. A very powerful argument from people who actually "experimented".
The recent Bruce Jenner craze has caused similar experiences for me recently. I notice my classmates, including one "friend", are massively offended by a simple headline and insist that I not share such links on my own Facebook, yet they seem quite pleased to express their own views and make personal attacks on me for so much as holding mine. If you are the man in this article, or are suffering similar experiences, know this: You are NOT alone. You face such hypocrisy because you are RIGHT. If you were wrong, they could prove it and treat you as their equal. Because they are wrong, they have to get upset. It's the only weapon they've got. Just rejoice that you are forgiven of your own sins, and pray that one day they, too, might turn to the throne of Christ and take up that same mercy :)
I wish you had given Bible scripture re. the subject. Why not tell about evil Sodom & Gomorrah. Tell about the angels who had to be protected/shielded from men who wanted to have sex with them. Was it their beauty/purity that made them so desirable? EVEN the homosexual DESIRE is an abomination.
This article wasn't meant to be an exhaustive treatment of the subject, but see the related articles and the booklet I mentioned for the biblical teachings regarding homosexual desires and practices, as well as same-sex marriage.
Good advice all the way around for Mathias. It's a pretty unfortunate situation to be in and even a little disrespectful on the roommate's part. Asking you to keep silent when your view is contrary but continuing to speak on it in your presence shows a lack of respect I think. This is something all too common to those fighting the good fight. Most definitely pray for your friend but also wisdom and patience. I agree, there is a time to keep silent and a time to speak. I believe in this situation, any time it is brought up, speak. Be respectful and kind, but speak. Read CMI's material, increase your knowledge but be respectful and kind every time in every situation. They will either change their minds by the grace of God, or they discontinue speaking on it in your presence. Keep fighting the good fight. God bless you and CMI.
Keaton made some excellent points in his response. When reading, I thought about how we need to ask people to back up their arbitrary assertions, and Keaton addressed that quite clearly. What I did *not* think of were the next two things he said: relevance of the claims ("...would that make it okay?"), and that the original writer would have good reasons to deny those claims.
It is indeed unfortunate that people "think" with their emotions, and that is part of the reason that logical fallacies are so effective — especially those that appeal to emotion and to ridicule. To stand up for the truth of the authority of Scripture takes courage. People today are afraid that others will say mean things about them (such as, "I disagree with what you said, you're a liar for Jesus!"), forgetting that there are Christians who are actively persecuted, even tortured and murdered, for their faith. And we worry about negative talk? No, we need to saddle up anyway.
Also, I fully agree that there's a point when we have to move on because some people refuse to listen after we've made our points. I reckon that some just want to argue and waste our time, and we have important things to do that they are distracting us from accomplishing.
All too often people are persuaded by bad arguments, that’s why fallacies are so successful. Some people have to go through a major fall or reach the end of their philosophical road before the spirit can enter. So no matter how rational you are it will have no effect, best move on to those who at least questions their motives and leave the Holy Spirit to heal the eventual broken pieces of sexual experimentation. I personally love Psalms 1, because it has so much truths in a single sentence.
Psalm 1:1 (KJV) “Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful.”
It is true in many cases that calm, reasoned arguments may be ineffective, but in other cases they may be, even when one's opponent has a hard exterior and doesn't appear to budge. It takes wisdom to know when to engage and when to move on.
Don't forget too, not the last resort thing you can do, but the most powerful thing you can do for your friends, is to pray for them.