Wendell Berry expounds on gay marriage

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Joined in 2005
January 15, 2013, 15:43

Interesting essay criticising the theological strategies used to marginalize gays. Given to Baptists ministers in Jan at the “Following the Call of the Church in Times Like These” conference at Georgetown College

From the Article

“Christians of a certain disposition have found several ways to categorize homosexuals as different as themselves, who are in the category of heterosexual and therefore normal and therefore good,” Berry said. What is unclear, he said, is why they single out homosexuality as a perversion.

“The Bible, as I pointed out to the writers of National Review, has a lot more to say against fornication and adultery than against homosexuality,” he said. “If one accepts the 24th and 104th Psalms as scriptural norms, then surface mining and other forms of earth destruction are perversions. If we take the Gospels seriously, how can we not see industrial warfare — with its inevitable massacre of innocents — as a most shocking perversion? By the standard of all scriptures, neglect of the poor, of widows and orphans, of the sick, the homeless, the insane, is an abominable perversion.”

“Jesus talked of hating your neighbor as tantamount to hating God, and yet some Christians hate their neighbors by policy and are busy hunting biblical justifications for doing so,” he said. “Are they not perverts in the fullest and fairest sense of that term? And yet none of these offenses — not all of them together — has made as much political/religious noise as homosexual marriage.”

What do people think about this article ?

Ann Maree
Joined in 2008
January 16, 2013, 14:18

Hi Shadow Boxer

Thanks for posting this. I agree with the points above. I think it's good to look at the use of the word 'perversion' and what we define as such. I think for a long time it's been associated with a sexual nature and yet I agree that the word means much more than that and yet people choose to only focus on the sexual and what they believe to be perverted in relation to that.

I looked up some online definitions of perversion and this is what I found: "The alteration of something from its original course, meaning, or state to a distortion or corruption of what was first intended."(Wikipedia)… per·vert 1. To cause to turn away from what is right, proper, or good; corrupt.

2. To bring to a bad or worse condition; debase. 3. To put to a wrong or improper use; misuse. 4. To interpret incorrectly; misconstrue or distort: an analysis that perverts the meaning of the poem. n. (pûrvûrt) One who practices sexual perversion.

So corrupting the land, distorting scripture, turning away from people in need or failing to love others would definitely also fit with perversion according to these definitions.


Ann Maree

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