|Auld Lang Syne, and a new beginning|
As we move into 2009, we bid our "auld lang syne" to the Christian Right, the end of the controlling influence of the Christian Right which begin in the mid 80s, and will now face a decline with their attempt to retain power hopelessly derailed by a population seeking a change from a religiously based Government that despite its claim to be godly is morally reckless in going to war and supporting the wall street big businesses (through deregulation), and using gays as a scapegoat for popularity. The party may be over for the Christian Right, despite them claiming a "decisive" victory over gays on Proposition 8 and a "will" of the people, even though it was a narrow margin. They are trying to complete the job, by seeking the courts to annul all the gay marriages granted before the Proposition 8. They had better, for the margin of victory was small, and the next election in 4 years looks grim with ever decreasing public support for their religious hypocrisy. What they do not understand is that the iniquity and harm that they have sowed against the gay community deceptively terms as "pro-family" and "pro-marriage" in the last 30 years, will also be returning to them in kind and multiplied, not to them in particular, but perhaps to Evangelical Christians as a whole.
It has been just under 20 years ago when it was reported in 1990 of a new rebirth and revival of the Christian Right. It was a cynical yet devious attempt to focus on local politics, to take over the Republican Party, and to elect thousands of Christian Politians into Power through a regimented block voting. Their anti-gay strategy creating a notion of an Anti-Gay aggenda was confirmed in a meeting at Glen Eyrie in 1994, with the Focus on family being a main champion of this new crusade and the illicit tactics to be used.
The Christian Right turned the Political World upside down with James Dobson being a power broker who swept George Bush into power in Year 2000. Four years later despite a ill conceived war which killed thousands of innocent victims, the Christian Right again saved the day which massive block voting of the Evangelical Right using Gays as their punching bag and fanning the fears of the mob mentaility. Four years later, the tactic did not work again, overused, and a nation more interested in the looming financial crisis caused by a Christian Government eager to use the sword, and consumed by creating wealth for the big business When the real scam was discovered, the thieves supported by the Christian religious masters have taken their large multi-million bonusses leaving people in the main street loosing billions, some even their life savings. It was a Prosperity Theology driven by greed, and an anti-gay theology driven by self righteousness and self morality which all came tumbling down.
There is a spiritual law often highlighted in Prosperity theology of sowing and reaping. It is a law which works by itself just like putting money in any interest bearing account will naturally bear a small dividend. Time is a major factor, and over a long period of time, the growth is non linear ie the multiplication happens over time. Gays has been suffering for a thousand years, with particular reference to the anti-gay laws by Henry the Eight in 1533 which nade it a capital offence resulting in the death penalty. Whilst the Black community often inisist that Gays Rights are not the same as the injustice suffered by the Black community, they were right, for they never had the death penalty for being Black. We have been bearing the "interest" over time, sowing even more capital with Gays being sent to the Concentration camp to be "exterminated", and used as a stepping stone for the Christian Right ascension to power.
One of the characteristic of reaping, is that one will reap similarly to what is sowed. If we sowed deception and lies against others, when we reaped, others will lie about us in the same way. The manner we judged, we shall be judged. When our anti-gay aggenda is packaged as "Pro-Family", and "Pro-Marriage", and the "Will of the people" we are seeing a similarly insidious attempt to come against Christians themselves. We can quote clobber verses from the bible to justify our position and they would just do the same based on their religious books?
In what "Christianity Today" editorial called the "Terror in Orissa" in an article on 10 Sept 2008, with a demand that " It's time for India to start acting like the world's largest democracy". They also claimed that the Hindu State's Anti-conversion laws are religiously motivated terrosim. This is extremely condescending and arrogant of Christianity today when India has acted democratically and it is the will of the people to enact these anti-conversation laws, which is packaged as "Freedom of religion" laws. So we have the "Freedom of religion Act" laws giving license to persecution of Christians just as the Christian themselves called the laws to ban gay marriages as "Pro-marriage". But what moral right do we have to say this is wrong? How can foreign religious activist override the majority will of the people in India?. What we are reaping is far worse than what we have sowed for they are killing Christians at Orissa. Called it a violations of the UN Human Declaration of Rights, but we had never adhere to it when treating gays, or incarcerating people at Guantanamo Bay for years without trial.
We have put Gays in closets for centuries, causing so much pain, deaths, and grieve, and separation from God and rationalise this as moral and God's ways. Now the majority at Orissa are likewise rationalising that what they are doing was moral and just, based on their faith by persecuting Christians. Are we any better? haven't we done the same in persecuting gays? Just like Christians calling "Protection of Marriage", they have called their persecution of Christians, the "Freedom of religion". There is a law which few have appreciated. It is a principle or law of multiplication which will happen naturally when we sow evil, we reap likewise a hundred fold.
Christians are eager to quote the Law against Gays. They are breaking God's laws we claim. If we were to be consistent, by Jewish Laws, we have no right to be Christians. We have forgotten the Grace by which we have entered into the Abrahamic Covenant, the grace for which we have become the children of God. We are sinners being forgiven so much, yet have not shown compassion and pity on the Gay community. The first Christians were Jewish Christians, who demanded by the Law that the Christians must first be Jews! and follow Jewish Laws as well. It was grace that that changed the heart of Paul, the abundant grace for he was the chief sinner being the one who persecuted Christians and had sent Stephen to his death. Paul who understood the Grace of God in his life, challenged the incumbent of rules and Christianity spread throughout Asia Minor and to Europe of which otherwise it will remain as a Jewish sect for Jews only. The Jewish religious leaders followed Paul everywhere demanding that the Jewish Christians have transgressed God's laws by worshiping Jesus as God whom the Jews considered as blasphemy. Are Christians any different, demanding that Gays must be punished by the Law?.
Jesus tried to humanised the outcast as people of worth and dignity but the religious Jews framed it as a narrow religious dogma treating people as objects. The world was centered around them rather than the people whom God had ordained for them to minister. The Christian Right tried their best to dehumnaise Gays, calling them Homosexuals as if they aslo would called straight people Heterosexuals. It takes away the human individual, their individual humanity and individuality, to love, and be loved, to care, and be free just as any human being and lumped them to their sexual orientation which makes only a part however intrinsic of their lives. It makes it easy for the Christian Right to go into their own closets shutting out the unique individual cries of the Gay person, treating them no longer as people, but as a theological issue. We will however reap what was sowed, just as the Orissa Christians suffered just because they were Christians, their individual cries not heard above the rage of the mob majority, their individuality lost in the sea of the majority. Once we start dehumnising the issue,we risk not hearing the cries of the individual, and the innocent. We risk not hearing God speaking through the cries of humanity.
As we bid our farewell to the Christian Right, we will see fireworks over the attempt to annul the many thousands of gays who had gotten married in California prior to Proposition 8 since June 2008.This attempt to break up the marriages of more than 18,000 couples is hostile and provacative. It will be very personal and create a very determined and zealous response of those impacted whose lives and marriages and love will be torn apart for our theological expediency of how we interpret the bible.
As we bid good bye to Year 2008, there is a morning arising for the GLBT community in year 2009 and beyond. There are many who have gone before, who saw this morning even though far off - the likes of Rev Troy Perry, Rev Mel White, Rev Gene Robinson, Rev Roy Clement, Archbishop Desmund Tutu, Sir Ian McKellen, Rev Pat Bumgardner, Rev Nancy Wilson, Rev Yap Kim Hao, Marsha Stevens, Peggy Campolo, Clay Aiken, Ellen Degeneres and many others. It will be sunset for the Christian Right. Sure, they will still be around, but there will be a coming out with gays no more hiding in the closet but coming out even in their teens. The resounding joys of the new year celebration, will go on and on, as we say goodbye to our captors. We have a duty to live as free people, to worship God freely, for the sacrifice of those who gone before and have laid down their lives and reputation that we may have life. They have sowed and we are the harvest, just have Jesus sowed His life two thousand years ago, that by His death and resurrection the world will know Him as their Lord and Saviour.