Forgive, O Lord, my little jokes on Thee
And Ill forgive Thy great big one on me.
Much of Christendom seems to have its collective shorts in a knot
over the homosexual threat to heterosexual virtue. To wit:
The K.C. Star reports that William Jewell College, a small
liberal arts school affiliated with the Missouri Baptist Convention, may
lose nearly $1 million of Baptist money for not being sufficiently
anti-gay. Evidence: last fall the administration allowed "a student
debate about sexual orientation."
The A.P. tells us that the most divisive issue at a national
meeting of Episcopal Church leaders is likely to be "whether to approve
blessing ceremonies for same-sex couples and confirm the church's first
election of an openly gay bishop. . . ."
The Vatican last week released a document called "Considerations
Regarding Proposals to Give Legal Recognition to Unions Between Homosexual
Persons." It's twelve pages long, and guess what: it opposesin seven
languagesproposals to give legal recognition to unions between
Those three actions did not grow out of the U.S. Supreme Court's
June 26 decision nullifying a Texas law against gay sex. But that
decision is clearly what tripped the Rev. Pat Robertson's trigger when he
launched Operation Supreme Court Freedom. You might have a hard time
linking that title to what Pat is espousing, but that's because your brain
probably doesn't work the way Pat's does.
What he's asking us to do in Operation Supreme Court Freedom is to
pray for some Divine Intervention to get rid of three of the justices on
the side of the majority in the Texas case. When he first introduced us
to Operation Supreme Court Freedom, Pat was a bit coy about who the three
"Would you join with me and many others in crying out to our Lord
to change the Court?" he asked on his web site. "If we fast and pray and
earnestly seek God's face, then He will hear our prayer and give us
relief. One justice is 83 years old, another has cancer, and another has a
heart condition. Would it not be possible for God to put it in the minds of
these three judges that the time has come to retire?"
He was talking about Justices Stevens, O'Connor, and Ginsburg. We
should be grateful that he didn't instruct us to tell God to strike them
down with lightning bolts.
Pat has a history of odd opinions.
Two years ago, he and Jerry Falwell said the 9/11 attacks were
America's own fault because we're so wicked. He spoke out against
feminism because it leads women "to kill their children, practice witchcraft,
destroy capitalism, and become lesbians."
The Truth, Mainly
Get it? Huh? Get it? Neither do I.
But I digress. Let's see, there was something else I read
recently on the subject of homosexuality and Christendom. Oh, yes, now I
A Methodist minister, the Rev. Theodore Jennings Jr., who's a
professor at the Chicago Theological Seminary, has a new book out. It's
called "The Man Jesus Loved: Homoerotic Narratives from the New
I haven't read it, but an on-line review says that Jennings
"presents readings of the Gospels that shed new light on Jesus' own erotic
attachments and the New Testament's attitude toward same-sex
relationships. . . .Jennings argues that the Bible affirms and even celebrates
homosexual relationships. Jennings' study asks whether Jesus was gay
through a discussion of Jesus' beloved disciple in the fourth Gospel and
his acceptance of intimate love between persons of the same sex."
And here's the Journal-Star's headline about the book: "Was Jesus
I know, I know. It's an audaciously eye-bugging question.
But suppose for a minute that Jennings is right. It would
reinforce Robert Frost's image of God as The Celestial Trickster who plays
great big jokes on us mere mortals.
And take it a little further. Imagine a God who creates 90
percent of us straight and 10 percent of us gay, knowing with Divine
Foreknowledge that the 90 percent will make life hell for the 10 percent.
Now here's the kicker: Imagine Him creating His Only Begotten Son
as one of the 10 percent the rest of us will ridicule, mistreat, and
When Judgment Day comes around and we find out who's who and who
we've so scornfully relegated to second-class citizenship, would that be a
Great Big Joke on us or what? Would we be amused? Would Pat Robertson?
OK, I got that out of my system. You can take me away now.
Retired English Professor Leon Satterfield writes to salvage clarity
from his confusion. His column appears on alternate Mondays. His e-mail