It seems normal now to think of sin as an action that hurts someone else. We tend to have the biggest disagreements over the ones that don't physically or emotionally hurt anyone, but are thought to hurt those mysterious 'souls' that we have floating around. The idea of 'equivalents' is kind of ludicrous for measuring the spiritual. Is lying as bad as murder? Sure, if it condemns someone. In spiritual terms, a murderer is already a liar, for denying the life of the body as sacred. The liar is already a murderer, for denying the sacred life of the soul.
Sin is everybody's business if it hurts someone.
If it doesn't, it is only more sinful to discriminate or hate.
you are talking about a single, specific natural order.
I'll rebut you. You are talking about a single natural order too. You just don't realize it.
why can't there be other natural orders?
There might be other orders, but they aren't natural.
You say slavery was part of the natural order. No, it wasn't. The natural order is equality.
What do you not understand about the word 'inalienable'?
Do you think an 'inalienable right' is supposed to change? Do you think it was ever GOOD to take away a person's freedom? Was it ever GOOD to take away their life? Is it 'natural'? Slavery was not good just because a lot of people in a certain time period got away with it. If that were the case, then why don't we say it used to be good, and things changed? Do you think the descendents of those slaves would be happy to hear you say 'slavery used to be natural'?
You know what is funny? When a christian tries to rationalize the crusades by talking about how conquest was 'natural' back then, it doesn't go over well. We recognize the same natural law looking backwards as that which we have in the present. There are plenty of things that change in the course of history. Coal mining is still not evil just because people switched to oil. I don't see why giving up slavery would be any different, if it was so 'natural'.
The "natural order" might not change, but our ideas about it do change.
Yes, Ringo. Our ability to understand how things 'should be' is an ongoing process. What should be is the natural order. If something IS, that does not mean it should be that way. What once WAS, does not mean it should have been. That is a point no one should debate. If what SHOULD be is open to debate, then we would have to say that slavery is an option for the future as it was for the past.
Well, I'm certainly not in favor of slavery, but I don't think "equality" is the natural order of anything. Nature is NOT fair,
That is an interesting observation, but I am not sure that we should determine our actions based on insects :)
To go with the analogy, these insects are not enslaving their own species. Some insects are opportunistic cannibals, many have an obvious heirarchy. Queens however are born to be queens, and drones to be drones. They are directly dependent on each other, and that IS the natural order. Translate it to mankind, you have the concepts of being born to be 'king', and the caste system, where we are all born 'unequal' by nature. These ideas of 'natural order' were accepted for centuries, by our modern standard they are silly.
So, to aim in the general direction of the topic: What "should be", with regard to discrimination against homosexuals? What is the "natural order" with respect to homosexuals? What "inalienable rights" do homosexuals have?
Obviously they have the same rights to life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness. They have the right to vote, to hold office, to gain access to any job they would choose. If it is sinful, that is an opinion...but even if it were, being free of sin is not a criteria for any resume or right to exist peacefully. If 'sinners' were allowed to be discriminated against by those who consider them such, we would have to go after masturbators as well :)
Having a right to marriage is a bit more tricky, only because that right is denied to other folks based on the same reasoning. Relatives, for example, can't marry legally. We aren't legally allowed to marry more than one person, even if there is love and commitment and child-rearing going on.
Of course, being allowed to take Holy Orders as a priest is not an inalienable right.
your arguments against homosexuality have about as much credence as those against interracial marriages.
I didn't yet mention homosexuality. I am only proposing a difference between the natural order and the temporary diversions from it such as slavery.
then how is it natural to prohibit homosexuals the right to marry and enjoy the benefits of marriage? doing so, would be unnatural, to your order. Something tells me you didn't mean this--because you find homosexuality to be an abomination before the lord. therefore, its only right to discriminate against them. But then, that destroys your order of equality, doesn't it?
Would it be unnatural for me to marry my brother even if I didn't have sex? Just a question. Every human being is equal, in the eyes of the Lord especially. I firmly believe that. I also do not believe that everything we want to do makes the same amount of sense. Do I have the right to two husbands, if it makes me happy, or is somehow productive to me?
Rob, be careful. Be very careful. You claim to want equality, and yet you do not want to give equality.
and as a personal question, why do you have to have someone constantly reminding you such and such an action is "sinful"? is your moral fiber so weak that you have to have "sin" and the retribution that comes with it?
There is always that wierd misconception that christians must have a list of 'sins' in their back pocket to refer to before they take action. God actually put a list in your back-pocket too, but He didn't sign it.
I don't play 'the Bible says'. If a thing seems unnatural to me, there are two choices. Either it is, or I have been led to believe it is. I would not feel right marrying my bro. Even in saying that I know that my idea of marriage is intrinsically tied to 'sex', for maybe I could marry him if that were not an issue. In that case, why can't people have civil unions as brother and sister? Benefits, the whole nine?