Jericho must fall for the Church and Singapore to grow up


(Mat 5:20 NKJV) "For I say to you, that unless your righteousness exceeds the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven.

15 July 2007. In a first in Singapore, a public forum was held at the National Library to discuss on the issue of 377A concerning the penal codes on Homosexual Acts. In an unprecedented event, the forum was participated by the Government's Member of Parliament, Mr Baey Yam Keng, Nominated MP Siew Kum Hong, Gay Activist Alex Au, Stuart Koe, Russel Heng, and a Methodist Church ex-leader, Reverend Dr Yap Kim Hao. The forum attended by more than 200 was strongly in favor of decriminalization however it was clear that if a vote was held in parliament, this would be a minority view due to the strong vocal Anti-Gay Christian Fundamentalist in Singapore. Meanwhile, it was reported in America that the Catholic Church in Los Angeles will be paying over USD 600 million in compensation for abusing children but there was no mention in the forums where instead was filled with Christian rage alleging that Homosexuality will bring down the family unit and Singapore. Have the Church become the epitome of hate and hypocrisy! and not the Gospel of the Love of God for which it was mandated to declare! Is the righteousness of the church no better than that of the Pharisees!.

The Penal Code 377A was left over from the British. Whilst Singapore has gained independence from the British, they have not followed suit to discard the archaic British Laws which the British themselves found it necessary to decriminalized on 28 July 1967, nearly 40 years ago. I think," Sir Ian McKellen said in a live interview on the Class 95 radio station, "Coming to Singapore where unfortunately you've still got those dreadful laws that we British left behind... it's about time Singapore grew up, I think, and realized that gay people are here to stay,". The issue for the Singapore Government is a pragmatic one, in that Fundamentalism especially religious fundamentalism closes the mindset and hinders the general innovative environment for Singapore to be consistent with its World Class Status. We can't wait for the Christian Minority to change its views in two decades time for the World will not wait for us.

"Equal Rights Regardless of Sexual Orientation -- Certain basic human rights and civil liberties are due all persons. We are committed to supporting those rights and liberties for homosexual persons.
(United Methodist Church - Section H, Paragraph 162, of the Social Principles under "III. The Social Community.")

The Methodist Church of Singapore responded stating that Rev Yap does not represent them and that they support continual criminalization of Homosexual Practice but confusingly declared that Homosexuals are of "sacred worth". The National Council of Churches representing the vast majority of Singaporean Protestant Churches against reiterated their firm stands against Gays and confirmed that this is the majority view within those churches they represent. The Methodist Church of Singapore (33,000 members) led by Rev Dr Robert Solomon has become even more fundamentalist than its parent the United Methodist Church (9 million members) in the States whom whilst holding the same opinion concerning homosexuality for the ordained ministers, is against all forms of discrimination against Gays as a matter of social justice. In addition, in a resolution passed by the 1996 General Conference contrary to the prevailing view, a resolution was passed "The U.S. military should not exclude persons from service solely on the basis of sexual orientation". In the 2000 General Conference, the delegates rejected a proposal that would have required all pastors to sign a statement professing that homosexuality is not God's will. Is God coming against the "Jericho" of the Christian Church in Singapore, their strongest and oldest fortress?

(Josh 6:1-3 NKJV) Now Jericho was securely shut up because of the children of Israel; none went out, and none came in. And the LORD said to Joshua: "See! I have given Jericho into your hand, its king, and the mighty men of valor. "You shall march around the city, all you men of war; you shall go all around the city once. This you shall do six days.

JERICHO was one of the oldest cities in the world and the first city Israel conquered under Joshua. Jericho is situated in the lower Jordan Valley, which, according to Genesis 13:10, "was well watered everywhere like the garden of the Lord." Jericho was called "city of palms" (Deut. 34:3; Judg. 1:16; 3:3; 2 Chron. 28:15) and was an oasis situated in a hot plain, living in its own world with no major settlement in sight, and lying between the two focal points of Jerusalem and Amman in the mountains to the west and east. As the Gay rights marches on in many ways prompted first by the Christian tele-evangelist fund raising gay bashing scapegoats since the 70s, 80s and 90s it has been a loosing battle despite the massive overwhelming power and majority the church has at its disposal. Jericho has now securely shut up just as the church has made firm its stand, closed its ranks, the locked the gates in view of the impending onslaught against their stand on homosexuality. The battle has been lost in Europe, nearly lost in America, and now the last fortress is in the former British Colonies in Asia and Africa. (The Empire is striking back it seems). Gay parades have marched round the cities of the world even in Jerusalem in 2005. We do not need to fight against the church in a verbal dialog but only march we shall for our basic rights and dignity declaring the Love of God for the GLBT community and the Walls of Jericho will fall sooner rather than later. The time for talking, the time for dialog is over. It is time to march on to claim what is rightly ours and to ask the church for compensation just as those who are abused by the Catholic Church has claimed and received compensation.

(Josh 6:10 NKJV) Now Joshua had commanded the people, saying, "You shall not shout or make any noise with your voice, nor shall a word proceed out of your mouth, until the day I say to you, 'Shout!' Then you shall shout."

Jericho perhaps represents one of the greatest strongholds of Fundamentalist Christianity whose behavior and characteristics follows closely that of the Jewish zealots. At the heart of the argument is Paul's lament as he battles against the Judaist in the Church who insisted that the Christian Jews follows the Jewish laws as well in effect making the Cross of Calvary of no effect? God is returning the Church to a Christ centered Church and the greatest stumbling block is religion where we believe that through our works we can reach God, and after we are saved, through our continual good deeds we remained in good terms with God. In the 21st Century, the Christians are insisting to bring the Kingdom of God down to Earth, where Christians are asked to gain the wealth and influence of the nations and that we shall rule over the world. Worldly gain becomes the ulterior motive for becoming a Christian not repentance from sin and turning to walking to do the will of God in the example of Christ who gave all. The World and its wealth have been on offer since Jesus' days, but who will we be bowing down to? Jesus is taken away from the equation and we end up with religion based on self, based on commercialism, power, wealth, influence, and guardians of morality and good works. The religious zealots did not make the mark, they ended up killing Jesus Christ, God's Grace and Mercy to Mankind. What you have on trial in Singapore and Africa, is not the Gay people, you have the 21st Century Christian Church on Trial.

I am reminded of a 1975 praise and worship song, "Lift Up the Banner Of Love". Jesus came in John 3:16,17, He came out of love not to condemn us for violating the laws but to offer Himself, His all for the sake of Love. He came not that the Church will continue on as the Jewish Zealots did, to preach the Law and the need for obedience to it. Jesus came that through His death, He might be lifted up as the example of all, the banner of God's love, and the way to God's redemptive purposes. Instead, the Church became no different from the Jewish Zealots eager to preach the Law, but worst still since the Jews actually made a very sincere attempt to follow the Laws, but modern days Christians do not even know the letter nor the spirit of the very comprehensive Jewish laws whom they cherry picked to condemn Gays.

As we marched on across the globe in Gay Parades with Christians standing by the side with their "God hate Fags" Banners, the Gay Community is essentially lifting up the banner of love calling for a move inclusive society in this war torn world filled with sectarian violence, poverty in the midst of incredible wealth, and oppression of the minority by the majority. God is using the "lowest" strata of society, the queer people to humble the strong and the proud those who are proud of their righteousness and morality. Jericho must fall, the strongholds of darkness and sin controlling the church in captive must fall for Jesus is coming back for a pure Church which is of the Kingdom of God and not of the Kingdom of this World which it has inevitably become. This is war and we are calling up Christians to take up the banners of war not with arms, not with violence, not with hate or rhetoric, but to lift up the banner of Love, to lift up the banner of Jesus Christ. For when Jericho falls, all its inhabitants were killed. Similarly, if the church continues to defend and fight against this most unlikely "army" of God, when the walls of discrimination, homophobia, hypocrisy, and Religiosity fall, it will bring down the Moral standing of the Church and along with it precious name and witness of Jesus Christ, Our Savior and Lord. Regardless, Jericho must fall, for the Church to grow up and for the move of God's Grace and Mercy to move forward to the Nations of the World.

Lift High the Banner of Love, Hallelujah
Sound the banners of war
Christ has gotten us the victory, Hallelujah
Jericho must Fall

The body of Christ is an army
Fighting powers unseen
Bringing the captives to freedom

Lift High the Banner of Love, Hallelujah
Sound the banners of war
Christ has gotten us the victory, Hallelujah
Jericho must Fall

In the name of God the Father,
In the name of Jesus His Son
and In the name of the Son,
and In the name of the Spirit,
we will fight till we are called Home

Jericho must fall

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