Marriage Equality


This post is published at Wheat & Tares — but I wanted to post it here for my own records.  So — if you want to comment on it, please do so over there.

Interviewer: But did [Oscar] Wilde identify himself as gay?

Stephen Fry: No, I don’t think he did. He talked about his nature — he was aware of what people’s natures were, to have sex with their own kind. He wasn’t an idiot — he was fully aware there was such a sexual orientation, but the noun “homosexual” did not yet exist in the English language.

I think Wilde had that advantage that he lived in a time when people were not nouns. You didn’t ascribe labels to them. While he was aware of his nature and never apologized for it, he didn’t shout it from the rooftops in the manner of a modern actor with a Larry Kramer sort of gay sensibility.

And I think those who try to read that into Oscar won’t find it there. You might as well wonder why Oscar didn’t have a Web site. He was more mature than our age is. I mean, he had very little interest in sins of the flesh, or he realized that it isn’t very important whether you call them sins of the flesh or not. The only things that matter are sins of the spirit. In that sense Oscar was quite religious.

That’s what so ironic — the religious complain about sins of the flesh, but sins of the flesh are not the kind of thing that Christ would object to. What you do with your penis or your bottom or anything else is so supremely irrelevant in a moral sense. It’s what we do with our personalities and other people that matters.

I still haven’t heard a convincing argument on how allowing gay marriage would affect my marriage in a negative manner.  It bothers me that we’re so focused on the hot button issue of “gay marriage” that the real issues affecting marriage [like spousal abuse, poverty, emotional fulfillment, etc.] end-up being ignored.

I think [despite what evangelical Americans will suggest] that the scriptures are largely silent on the issue homosexual relationships.  The scriptures that do condemn “men lying with men as with a woman”, etc. refer more to the practice of either:

  • sex-rituals [as in, not among married couples]
  • using anal sex to show “domination” or “subjugation” over a conquered group
  • the physical lust for the pleasure of the sex-act

So it’s possible that those scriptures are condemning those behaviors — not “homosexuality” as such.  As Stephen Fry is explaining in the quote above, homosexuality as a sexual orientation and same-gender relationships based on marriage covenants of fidelity between same-gender couples simply did not exist until relatively recently.

Marriage is not about religion because atheists marry.  Marriage is not about procreation because the infertile marry.  I’d like to say that marriage is just about “love” between two people who desire to get married – however, the problem is we have allowed the State to license marriage and ascribe civil benefits to obtaining that license.  Cohabitation, shared beliefs, procreation, love, etc. – do not require legal permission from the government.  Civil rights and IRS benefits, however, do.

Marriage is basically the formation of a “corporation” between individuals.  This “corporation” gets legal benefits from the State [like any other corporation].  I don’t get upset every time a business incorporates — so why should I get upset when people want to incorporate a relationship?  The prohibition against same-gender marriage isn’t an issue because they’re not allowed to live together and love each other.  It’s an issue because the government’s involvement in marriage means that same-gender couples are not allowed to enjoy civil privileges:  receiving insurance through the spouse’s coverage, visitation rights in a hospital, adopting a child, filing jointly for income tax, taking family leave when the spouse is sick, making arrangements after death, etc. because their status is not legally recognized by a State-issue license.

Obviously, the solution to many of these problems is ejecting the State out of our home, family, romantic, and sex lives.  We have such a problem because with the power of civil benefits, the State is seen as legitimizing what relationships matter and which ones don’t.  The church should be at the forefront of getting the State and Marriage divorced because we [with all other Abrahamic religions] believe that humans were gathered into families prior to the establishment of civil governments.  Whether a couple is considered married “in the eyes of God” or not can have nothing to do with a State-issued license.  Thus, a good first step in this direction would be to no longer require a marriage license to perform religious services like for-time marriages and eternal family sealings.

But even if we want to be secular about it – the historical basis of the “family” was multihusband-multiwife tribes that shared food, labor, childcare, and sexual partners — not our present narrative of the two-parent nuclear family with a college-educated urban employment and a suburban house, with the 3 or 4 kids and a dog.  The church adopted itself into that institution [which is politically-termed “Pro-Family”], and re-framed our “Eternal Families” narrative to garner wider recruitment in the wake of the 1890 Manifesto and renunciation of polygyny.

The church, as presently organized, is a gerontocracy — so leadership today represents a 1950′s era American-style Mormonism from a Utah-centric, cis-, hetero-, anglo-, middle-class privileged lifestyle point-of-view.  And so, with the power concentrated in the hands of these few, we get a gospel presented in those terms only — with nothing for people whose narratives differ either slightly or greatly from that.  I think that with legalized gay marriage in the US being standing a good chance in the near future, the church could be at the forefront of presenting a family doctrine of fidelitous sexual ethics for both straight and gay members.

However, doing so would necessitate a re-evaluation of the stated positions on:

  • what the fundamental purpose of marriage covenants really is
  • what God’s design for getting adults together into families is really all about
  • and what is He wanting us to do/foster in human society by organizing ourselves this way

Because presently the regurgitated, stock-responses are not internally-consistent with themselves:

  • We parrot traditional American Christianity by saying that marriage is about One-man-and-One-woman, but we’ll all allow marriages after a spouse’s death and after a divorce [which would be serial monogamy — not a true mono-].
  • Then, as LDS, we take it further by sealing polygynous and polyandrous eternal families through our policy of sealing any deceased person to all spouses they had while living [which is, again, not one man and one woman].
  • And we’ll also use the natural law argument along with the other Christians to attempt to tie the purpose of marriage families together with reproduction — when many couples are infertile, or marry after reproductive age, and many couples are not economically-sound enough to provide for the maintenance of large families [especially when we keep them separate with sanctions against plural husbands and wives], and there are plenty of already-born children who aren’t cared for well-enough and could be adopted instead.

I think LDS are unique in the position of being able to associate marriage covenants with fidelity, cooperation, commitment, service, intimacy, fellowship, emotional fulfillment, and companionship — without needing them to be hetero- and monogamous.  And I think we can associate “the family” with greater purposes than reproducing children to fill-up the earth.  And while I think that marriage has a God-given “purpose” — I think it needs to be better associated with people having happy, loving, consensual, and faithful cooperative-unions.  If anything’s an “abomination”, it’s not homosexuality — it’s unions where people are taken advantage of, abused, lied to, cheated on, etc.  That should be illegal.  That should be a sin.

The problem is we get more interested in the outwardly-observable behaviors of the flesh — when the only things that really matter are state of the spirit or the heart.  The religious complain about sins of the flesh, but sins of the flesh are not the kind of thing that Christ would object to.  What you do with your penis or your orifices or anything else is absolutely irrelevant in a moral sense — especially when compared to our personalities and how we relate to and treat other people.

Next Article by Justin:  What, on Earth, are you Doing, for Heaven’s sake?

Previous Article by Justin: Using the Word of God as your Tribal Law

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205 Comments

  1. Dang. I was on the edge of my seat when I reached the most recent comment.I hope LDS Anarchist will call out the Ad Hominem attacks of being called “Prophet LDS Anarchist. Sorry Justin, you article was great, but I think I side with LDS Anarchist on this issue.

  2. I hope LDS Anarchist will call out the Ad Hominem attacks of being called “Prophet LDS Anarchist.

    I didn’t quite care for the ad hominem either — but it’s the only thing an unbeliever can do when someone claims to be speaking by the spirit of prophecy and revelation.

    I personally wouldn’t reply to such a thing — other than maybe to call it out as ad hominem. I’ll just usually leave people like that alone.

    Sorry Justin, you article was great, but I think I side with LDS Anarchist on this issue.

    No need to apologize — all I desire out of a post is that people find my idea well-written. I don’t mind people not agreeing. I likewise think LDSA’s stance was well-presented, entirely internally-consistent with everything else I know about his theology, etc. — and I can see how it could be true. I’m just not where I agree with it.

  3. I’m kind of bummed that I started posting over there before I realized that you posted the same article over here. I kept posting over there because I wanted to keep the thoughts in one place. Perhaps I will use this post, though, to address some points you brought up in the article that I didn’t address over there…

  4. Perhaps I will use this post, though, to address some points you brought up in the article that I didn’t address over there…

    Go right ahead. That’s why I posted this here too — was so I could keep what I’d written in one place with all my other articles.

  5. I said over there that I would return and further discuss some things, but there doesn’t seem to be much discussion going on over there, other than you and I and the occasional “utter/utterly” word from Nick, so I will stick to this forum for the remainder of the discussion. In the meantime, here’s a fairly recent sociological paper I found interesting:

    Queer Unions: Same-Sex Spouses Marrying Tradition and Innovation

  6. This post has got me thinking about Isaiah 3 again. In The daughters of Zion shall rule over them post, I addressed that prophecy beginning with verse 12, but this post brings my mind back three verses, to verse 9:

    the shew of their countenance doth witness against them
    and they declare their sin as sodom
    they hide it not
    woe unto their soul
    for they have rewarded evil unto themselves
    say ye to the righteous

    that it shall be well with him

    for they shall eat the fruit of their doings
    woe unto the wicked
    it shall be ill with him
    for the reward of his hands shall be given him
    (Isaiah 3:9-11)

    and

    the show of their countenance doth witness against them
    and doth declare their sin to be even as sodom
    and they cannot hide it
    wo unto their souls
    for they have rewarded evil unto themselves
    say unto the righteous

    that it is well with them

    for they shall eat the fruit of their doings
    wo unto the wicked
    for they shall perish
    for the reward of their hands shall be upon them
    (2 Nephi 13:9-11)

    I read this now, and I see “same-sex marriage” in the verses, the parties making a public declaration of marriage. (And for those who wish to correct me, I am well aware of the interpretations regarding the sins of Sodom, not being homosexuality, but pride, etc., and that their gang rape was an intimidation technique, to use violence to humiliate, etc., and not just that they wanted to have a homosexual orgy.)

  7. I still haven’t heard a convincing argument on how allowing gay marriage would affect my marriage in a negative manner.

    I don’t see how you can be convinced that “same-sex marriage” would negatively affect your marriage as long as you see it as right before God. If you see it as wickedness, as perversion, then we could analyze how the result of such wickedness, spread widely and backed by the coercive powers of the State, could and would negatively impact both your marriage, your children, your church and society as a whole, taking the principle found in the following scripture:

    And thus were the Lamanites afflicted also, and began to decrease as to their faith and righteousness, because of the wickedness of the rising generation. (3 Ne. 1:30)

    It might seem preposterous that faith and righteousness must decrease as wickedness increases, since a man ought to be able to remain faithful even in a sea of wickedness, right? But we have to take into account that most people go with the flow, not against it. If the majority adopt righteous practices, so do they. If they adopt wicked practices, again they do the same. The more accepted a practice becomes, the easier it is to accept, regardless of the practice.

    As long as homosexuality and same-sex marriage are viewed as perversions, or unacceptable, the lack of credibility creates a barrier to its spreading everywhere. If, though, an evil practice can gain credibility, or respectability, such as through legal recognition, then that natural barrier is removed and the general populace very quickly finds it a whole lot easier to engage in the wicked practice, so that it spreads like a plague rather quickly.

    Homosexual behavior is evil for a variety of reasons. For example, the promiscuous heterosexual male has nothing on the homosexual male. In that abstract I linked to above, one man was quoted as saying,

    Because homosexuals are rarely monogamous, often having as many as three hundred or more partners in a lifetime — some studies say it is typically more than one thousand — children in those polyamorous situations are caught in a perpetual coming and going.

    I was brought up living in close proximity to homosexual couples. The apartment building we lived in when I was a kid had 3 gay couples in it, and 5 straight. The superintendents were gay, our down stairs neighbors were gay and the couple right across from us were gay. Coming and going was, indeed, perpetual. We were friends with everyone in the building, but more especially with the family that lived down stairs, across from the gay couple, and also the gay man who lived across from us. This gay man was on such good terms with us, that he considered himself a sort of second son and would just walk in unannounced in our apartment. Well, that isn’t exactly true, He would enter singing and dancing, since he was into theatre, a real triple threat performer. Going over to his apartment, he had GQ magazine (as well as Playgirl) sitting on his coffee table and it wasn’t until I became an adult that I learned that GQ didn’t stand for Go Queer, but Gentleman’s Quarterly. Suffice it to say that these neighbors did exert some influence on us kids. But we knew they weren’t married and that they were gay and, although we were tolerant of their lifestyle, we were taught it was a perversion and was wrong, and we weren’t tempted by it.

    But rewind the time again and put those men into legalized “marriages” to each other so that they now were no longer considered perverts but their arrangements were given credibility, and what influence might that have had on our young minds? (On my mind, probably not much, since I was stuck on God nearly from birth, but on my elder siblings, who were tossed around by every new fad and followed whatever crowd was in vogue at the time?) These “marriages,” if as promiscuous as before, which is typical, what sort of message do they send to people? If I marry heterosexually, I must remain faithful, but if I marry homosexually, I can have as many partners as I want? That still might not be enough to draw a person into that lifestyle, but teenagers experiment. That’s their very nature. Consider the following:

    In the identical twin studies, Dr. Whitehead has been struck by how fluid and changeable sexual identity can be.

    “Neutral academic surveys show there is substantial change. About half of the homosexual/bisexual population (in a non-therapeutic environment) moves towards heterosexuality over a lifetime. About 3% of the present heterosexual population once firmly believed themselves to be homosexual or bisexual.”

    “Sexual orientation is not set in concrete,” he notes.

    Even more remarkable, most of the changes occur without counseling or therapy. “These changes are not therapeutically induced, but happen ‘naturally’ in life, some very quickly,” Dr. Whitehead observes. “Most changes in sexual orientation are towards exclusive heterosexuality.”

    Numbers of people who have changed towards exclusive heterosexuality are greater than current numbers of bisexuals and homosexuals combined. In other words, ex-gays outnumber actual gays.

    The fluidity is even more pronounced among adolescents, as Bearman and Brueckner’s study demonstrated. “They found that from 16 to 17-years-old, if a person had a romantic attraction to the same sex, almost all had switched one year later.”

    “The authors were pro-gay and they commented that the only stability was among the heterosexuals, who stayed the same year after year. Adolescents are a special case—generally changing their attractions from year to year.”

    Given that natural ebb and flow of sexuality, if you increase the credibility of the homosexual lifestyle, it should be expected that the number of homosexuals will also increase. Children, in particular, are very easy to confuse. I think at the age of 9 or 10 I was still trying to figure out how the Tooth Fairy got into my room without me noticing.

    Now, none of this matters if you consider homosexuality and same-sex marriage as right before God, but if it is not right, then these perversions pose a real danger to the spiritual well-being of society.

    There is, though, another reason why faith decreases with the increase of wickedness, which I’ll explain at another time, if I remember to.

  8. Would you say that without an additional revelation explicitly stating so — that the current scriptures we have are sufficient enough to condemn every same-gender relationship as immoral in the sight of God?

  9. Yes.

  10. OK

  11. ^^
    That was the shortest exchange I’ve seen online. That was kinda fun.

  12. It’s all about the law of chastity

    Both homosexual behavior and “same-sex marriage” break the law of chastity because the law of chastity sets up both the parameters of legal sexuality and also of legal marriage. In other words, what constitutes illicit sex and illicit marriage is whatever is outside of the bounds of the law of chastity. Those two scriptures I quoted on the other blog encompass the two parts of the law of chastity, that a man must marry a wife and that a man must only have sex with his wife. Thus, we get the covenant (a man must marry a wife, or take a woman to wife, in other words, that a legal marriage covenant is a man taking a wife, which he must do) and the marriage (a man must have sex with only his wife, or that a legal marriage can only be between a man and his wife).

    “Same-sex marriage” breaks the law of chastity because it violates or perverts what a legal marriage is. And homosexual behavior breaks the law of chastity because it violates or perverts what legal or authorized sexual relations are.

    (Btw, every time I’m using legal or lawful, I’m speaking of the law of God, or according to the scriptures or word of God, not the civil law.)

    Homosexual behavior, then, comes under the whoredom designation, because it is illicit sexual activity. Thus, homosexual behavior is implied in the following future prophecy:

    They wear stiff necks and high heads; yea, and because of pride, and wickedness, and abominations, and whoredoms, they have all gone astray save it be a few, who are the humble followers of Christ; nevertheless, they are led, that in many instances they do err because they are taught by the precepts of men.

    O the wise, and the learned, and the rich, that are puffed up in the pride of their hearts, and all those who preach false doctrines,

    and all those who commit whoredoms, and pervert the right way of the Lord,

    wo, wo, wo be unto them, saith the Lord God Almighty, for they shall be thrust down to hell! (2 Ne. 28:14-15)

    (“That are puffed up in the pride of their hearts” brings to mind the Gay Pride parades…)

    But “same-sex marriage” is also a sin because it is another middle finger raised up at the Lord, intentionally seeking to confound the holy ordinance, in a public declaration of defiance, for it does not conform to any part of the law of chastity, but is but a mocking imitation.

    Sex is so damn powerful, that once a person engages in sexual perversion, their entire moral compass is turned upside down. The re-installment of idolatry and sex rites among the masses will occur first and foremost among those engaging in homosexual behavior, whose chief motivation in life becomes hedonism. Hedonistic orgies are already occurring in many places. And boundaries will continue to be pushed until they are obliterated altogether and people are freely taught that there is no such thing as sin.

    The whole agenda is couched behind rights, tolerance, equality and every other man-made philosophy that can be thought of in order to gain acceptance among the masses. But this is merely a Korihor-ish tactic, hiding behind legality and belief in order to push an agenda that they know will confound (destroy) the traditions that they fight against and hate.

    Some of the pro gay voices are dupes, having bought into the lies, some are liars spreading false propaganda. Some are people who are simply confused about the issue one way or another. Others are indifferent. Finally, there are those that oppose the agenda. The liars and dupes don’t care about the confused and indifferent, for they will be corralled eventually, for man’s nature is to follow the crowd. No, the target are the ones who voice opposition to their agenda, who must be silenced at all cost. Thus we get people like uttering Nick, whose knee-jerk reaction is to go on the offensive.

    But opposition is what is needed, regardless of how badly a person gets painted.

    My mind typically works backwards. Whereas others see things from A and work their way to Z, my mind typically sees Z first and then I must work my way backwards to A. I see the end first and must figure out how that future will come to pass, given that the conditions of A never match what is needed for Z.

    Usually, I can see the connection between A and Z, but in this case, the middle parts are all very fuzzy. But Z I know for sure. And although you may think this will not affect you, it most definitely will, for you are a part of the church and the church is the prime target. So you and me and everyone else that pertains to the church will be affected by “same-sex marriage” to a greater or lesser degree, because of what it will do to the church.

    Again, how is that possible? I can’t say. I simply don’t know, yet. But this much I do know: stalling is a useful technique, so although I know that the break-up will happen, better that it happen later than sooner, so every effort to oppose is a good effort.

    I guess I’ll write about the faith to wickedness ratio thing later.

  13. (I apologize for the post-length, actually more like book-length, comments, but I don’t feel like composing these thoughts into a separate post.)

    Mormon scriptures applicable to “same-sex marriage” (SSM)

    Moses 3:24. This scripture commands that a man must take to himself a wife and have sexual intercourse with her. This is why all men in the church are expected to get married, per this scripture, whereas the woman are under no such obligation. It is applicable to SSM for the obvious reason that a man “marrying” another man and being exclusive to him would break this commandment. The only way to get around this commandment would be for a man to “marry” another man and also marry him a wife. In other words, a bisexual, polygamous union.

    Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife; and they shall be one flesh.

    D&C 42:22-28. This scripture commands that a man must love his wife (that he married per the Moses 3:24 instructions) with all his heart and must have sexual intercourse with her and with nobody else. This scripture makes the bisexual, polygamous union impossible, for a man who “marries” a man and also a woman would only be able to have sexual relations with the woman. If the man were to have sexual relations with his “husband”, he would be guilty of committing adultery under one definition, fornication under another. Either way, there would be no way for him to have sexual relations with another man lawfully, regardless of the “marital” status between him and his “husband” and any such relations would be illicit, in other words, a whoredom.

    Additionally, this scripture states that the laws concerning marriage and sexual sins are in the scriptures, therefore, we know whereof to look to find out the answer as to whether SSM and homosexuality are right before God.

    Thou shalt love thy wife with all thy heart, and shalt cleave unto her and none else. And he that looketh upon a woman to lust after her shall deny the faith, and shall not have the Spirit; and if he repents not he shall be cast out.

    Thou shalt not commit adultery; and he that committeth adultery, and repenteth not, shall be cast out. But he that has committed adultery and repents with all his heart, and forsaketh it, and doeth it no more, thou shalt forgive; but if he doeth it again, he shall not be forgiven, but shall be cast out.

    Thou shalt not speak evil of thy neighbor, nor do him any harm.

    Thou knowest my laws concerning these things are given in my scriptures; he that sinneth and repenteth not shall be cast out.

    D&C 49:15-17. In this scripture we learn that marriage is an ordinance of God, ordained unto man by Him. This shows that marriage is not just any old corporation or agreement between two individuals, but that God is a party to every marriage. So, there is no such thing as a secular marriage. Even atheists who participate in God’s marriage ordinance without any involvement of church or state are invoking a divinely authorized rite. It cannot be stressed enough that marriage, according to this scripture, doesn’t originate with man, but with God.

    In other words, God didn’t take a man-made rite, found among men, and make it His own. On the contrary, He ordained this rite unto us “according to [man’s] creation before the world was made.” So, this heavenly rite was foreordained in the heavens, before the world was even made. And what is the rite, as defined by this scripture? That man should have a wife (the marriage covenant) “and they twain shall be one flesh” (the marriage bed). The rite is heterosexual in nature, by design, for the purpose of the marriage ordination is “that the earth might answer the end of its creation and that it might be filled with the measure of man.” So, multiply, replenish and fill up the earth with man, THAT is stated the purpose of marriage.

    Whether a married couple has children in this life or the next, makes no difference in the eyes of God, for now that they are married, they are authorized to continue the seed. Reproduction, then, is a significant aspect of marriage, which has no meaning in a SSM or homosexual context, for no two men or two women can ever be capable of reproduction amongst themselves, not even in the next life. Whereas even infertile couples who in this life produce no children, will, if they are faithful, bring forth an endless number of children in the next life. This ordinance is what authorizes all of this.

    And again, verily I say unto you, that whoso forbiddeth to marry is not ordained of God, for marriage is ordained of God unto man. Wherefore, it is lawful that he should have one wife, and they twain shall be one flesh, and all this that the earth might answer the end of its creation; and that it might be filled with the measure of man, according to his creation before the world was made.

    D&C 83:1-2. Here we learn that marriage is ordained to be a stewardship, the husband being the steward, his wife being his concerns. In SSM this principle is confounded, each same-sex “spouse” being an equal partner with no stewardship or concerns for either one.

    Verily, thus saith the Lord, in addition to the laws of the church concerning women and children, those who belong to the church, who have lost their husbands or fathers: Women have claim on their husbands for their maintenance, until their husbands are taken; and if they are not found transgressors they shall have fellowship in the church.

    D&C 132:3. In this revelation we learn that marriage is an ordinance of exaltation, not of salvation; that it pertains to becoming like God is and receiving all He has, even a fulness of His glory. The revelation itself is a commandment to have our already ordained marriage sealed (or confirmed) by the priesthood sealing power. Those that do not, cannot become like God. End of story. So, we must answer the question, “Can SSM be sealed by the priesthood?” I hope to show in this comment that it cannot.

    Therefore, prepare thy heart to receive and obey the instructions which I am about to give unto you; for all those who have this law revealed unto them must obey the same.

    D&C 132:5. Here we learn that the marriage sealing ordinance, which confirms the marriage ordinance, was as foreordained unto man as was the marriage ordinance. We might ask ourselves the following questions, “Was SSM foreordained in the heavens? Is SSM ordained of God? Was the marriage sealing ordinance foreordained to confirm SSM? Does it have power to seal a SSM?” The answer to all these questions is, “No.”

    For all who will have a blessing at my hands shall abide the law which was appointed for that blessing, and the conditions thereof, as were instituted from before the foundation of the world.

    D&C 132:8-11. This scripture shows that just because someone calls SSM “marriage” doesn’t mean God has ordained it. So, the prohibition to forbid to marry only applies to actual marriage, not fake marriage. (Lol. I kinda like that term. Maybe I’ll start using it…) Also, that everything that God ordains in this world was foreordained in the heavens before the creation of the world. So, anything that is new, or earthly, meaning of a man-made appointment, which God did not foreordain in the heavens, cannot be received by Him. Everyone admits that SSM is as entirely new concept that never existed before. If it never existed or was foreordained in the heavens, then it cannot be of God.

    Behold, mine house is a house of order, saith the Lord God, and not a house of confusion. Will I accept of an offering, saith the Lord, that is not made in my name? Or will I receive at your hands that which I have not appointed? And will I appoint unto you, saith the Lord, except it be by law, even as I and my Father ordained unto you, before the world was?

    The Lord then gives us His law, which is His word, concerning both the marriage ordinance and the marriage sealing ordinance. Over the course of the next few verses we get some if/then statements, all of which have a heterosexual context. “If a man marry a wife.” Why does it have a heterosexual context? Because this is the law.

    God commanded Abraham, and Sarah gave Hagar to Abraham to wife. And why did she do it? Because this was the law

    All of D&C 132 is the law, even the marriage law, covering the both the first ordinance and second confirming ordinance. It is not given in a heterosexual context because of tradition or culture, but because this is the law that was foreordained unto man in the heavens prior to the creation of the earth.

    D&C 132:19. This verse shows that the sealing is for a continuation of the seeds, which has no meaning in a SSM context. Also, the only authorization given to a sealer in to seal a marriage in which “a man marry a wife.” In other words, the sealing power only has power to seal heterosexual marriages.

    And again, verily I say unto you, if a man marry a wife by my word, which is my law, and by the new and everlasting covenant, and it is sealed unto them by the Holy Spirit of promise, by him who is anointed, unto whom I have appointed this power and the keys of this priesthood…it shall be done unto them in all things whatsoever my servant hath put upon them, in time, and through all eternity; and shall be of full force when they are out of the world; and they shall pass by the angels, and the gods, which are set there, to their exaltation and glory in all things, as hath been sealed upon their heads, which glory shall be a fulness and a continuation of the seeds forever and ever.

    D&C 132:30-31. This scripture shows that the marriage (and sealing) ordinance is a promise concerning the seeds, meaning that it has to do with engendering children, whether in this world or the next. This is why the law of marriage was revealed.

    Abraham received promises concerning his seed, and of the fruit of his loins—from whose loins ye are, namely, my servant Joseph—which were to continue so long as they were in the world; and as touching Abraham and his seed, out of the world they should continue; both in the world and out of the world should they continue as innumerable as the stars; or, if ye were to count the sand upon the seashore ye could not number them. This promise is yours also, because ye are of Abraham, and the promise was made unto Abraham; and by this law is the continuation of the works of my Father, wherein he glorifieth himself.

    D&C 132:34,37. Everything in the law regarding concubines is in the context of bearing children. SSM has no part in any of this since they cannot bear children with their spouse.

    God commanded Abraham, and Sarah gave Hagar to Abraham to wife. And why did she do it? Because this was the law; and from Hagar sprang many people. This, therefore, was fulfilling, among other things, the promises.

    Abraham received concubines, and they bore him children;

    D&C132:41-44. The verses explaining what is and is not adultery are all in the context of heterosexual marriage, in which one (the wife) is automatically exclusively bound to the husband and the other (the husband) in free to take another wife unless he has taken a vow not to. This arrangement is completely foreign to SSM, in which the couple typically still continues to practice promiscuity and in which there is no intrinsic exclusive/non-exclusive arrangement, and instead of any vow of exclusivity, it ends up with a continually revised assessment of how open the arrangement will be. In other words, SSM entirely confounds and confuses nearly every heterosexual norm in marriage. It might be descibed as Paul wrote to Timothy:

    Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.

    Heterosexual marriage is godly, or godliness, because it is an actual ordinance of God. As the scripture says,

    Therefore, in the ordinances thereof, the power of godliness is manifest.

    SSM is even as Jesus told Joseph,

    “they draw near to me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me, they teach for doctrines the commandments of men, having a form of godliness, but they deny the power thereof.”

    SSM is entirely man-made, but in the form of godliness (real marriage). But I digress and will return to discussing D&C 132.

    In D&C 132:44 Joseph is given power to give a woman to another man, not to a woman. Why? Because this is the law of marriage. “Lesbian marriage” defeats all the purposes of real marriage.

    D&C 132:48. Although Joseph was given power to seal and loose whatever he wanted to, it was only efficacious if it was “by my word and according to my law,” showing that the sealing power has prescribed limitations. Just because a sealer seals a SSM, doesn’t necessarily make it according to God’s word and law. (I suppose, at some point in the future, this will be done by the wicked church.)

    And again, verily I say unto you, my servant Joseph, that whatsoever you give on earth, and to whomsoever you give any one on earth, by my word and according to my law, it shall be visited with blessings and not cursings, and with my power, saith the Lord, and shall be without condemnation on earth and in heaven.

    D&C 132:55. Joseph is blessed with “fathers and mothers, brothers and sisters, houses and lands, wives and children, and crowns of eternal lives in the eternal worlds”, but doesn’t get any husbands. Why? Because SSM ain’t foreordained.

    D&C 132:63. Why are the virgins given to the man? For reproduction. This shows that marriage in both a wife and concubine context has reproduction as a stated purpose. What is the purpose of SSM? To confound heterosexual marriage.

    But if one or either of the ten virgins, after she is espoused, shall be with another man, she has committed adultery, and shall be destroyed; for they are given unto him to multiply and replenish the earth, according to my commandment, and to fulfil the promise which was given by my Father before the foundation of the world, and for their exaltation in the eternal worlds, that they may bear the souls of men; for herein is the work of my Father continued, that he may be glorified.

    D&C 132:64-65. The law of Sarah, by which a first wife gives another permanent wife to her husband in the name of the Lord has no counterpart in SSM. SSM’s are largely open marriages, each partner sleeping with whomever they want to, regardless whether they are married to the person or not or how fleeting the relationship is. They are “marriages” in name only, in order to bastardize the term. They are poly-amorous arrangements with the word “marriage” stamped over it to give it some credibility and legitimacy, to teach people that “marriage can take many forms” and that heterosexual marriage is “old-fashioned,” the new type of marriage (perversion) being vastly superior.

  14. Some more thoughts

    It makes no difference whether a state solemnizes a marriage, or a minister, or the couple just does a personal covenant between themselves. It is all performed by the same authority, that of God. It is all equally valid in His eyes, because the authority is the same and the ordinance has not changed. However, if the ordinance is changed, then the authority must derive from an alternate source, other than from God. As God’s authority applies to His ordinances, a foreign ordinance must pertain to a foreign authority. The problem here is that we have entities that have changed God’s ordinance, yet are calling it the same thing. Do they have authority to change the ordinance? No. Do they have authority to call the changed ordinance the same? No. So, this is a clear case of perversion, of perverting an already established law of God, and not an attempt at introducing something new, such as civil unions, under a separate authority.

    All perversion is cursed by God. So, a couple entering into SSM by personal covenant are cursed, not blessed. We have no power to stop them, but we may express our disapproval and refuse to recognize it as legitimate. The couple is still free to make their assertion and bring the curse upon themselves, while those around them who do not condone it or give it any credibility, will remain, by their actions, free from the curse. However, those who condone it, are ambivalent about it, do not express disapproval, and/or who recognize it as legitimate, even though they themselves have not entered into SSM, are likewise cursed, for they are seen by God as encouraging perversion, by creating an atmosphere friendly to it.

    (And here is a scriptural example of this principle.)

    And now, my beloved son, notwithstanding their hardness, let us labor diligently; for if we should cease to labor, we should be brought under condemnation; for we have a labor to perform whilst in this tabernacle of clay, that we may conquer the enemy of all righteousness, and rest our souls in the kingdom of God. (Moroni 9:6)

    The same applies to the minister that solemnizes a SSM. The couple is cursed, the minister is cursed and the church congregation is cursed. Anyone who supports it or is nonchalant about it, is brought under the same condemnation. All those who oppose it and seek to remove it are free from the curse.

    Now we come to the state, the jurisdiction of which covers an even greater number of people. All of the same principles equally apply.

    Because the voice of a congregation, or the people of a state, has power to change church policy or state laws, they are expected to do their part in keeping the church they pertain to, and the state they reside in, free from institutionalized perversion. No one is exempt from this duty, not even anarchists.

    The state, as an instrument of force, has legalized immoral acts before. Thus, we have legalized killings and legalized theft. Murder and theft are sins, as are homosexual intercourse and SSM, but SSM differs in that it, unlike murder, theft and homosexual behavior, perverts a holy ordinance of God. This brings it under a different classification of condemnation.

    Neither the state nor a minister are required to solemnize a marriage. A couple can marry themselves or have someone else marry them, such as a judge or minister, or even just a friend, as they see fit. All such marrying authority is equal in the eyes of God, so even though we say, as anarchists, that the state should get out of the marriage business altogether, we could also say the same for churches. But as there is nothing wrong with a church marrying people, so there also should be nothing wrong with the state marrying. Just as a church minister may refuse to marry two people, so a state may refuse to marry two people. A state issued marriage license, then, is not permission to get married–for anyone can do that without a state or a minister–but permission or authorization for state recognition of a marriage.

    Again, there is nothing wrong about state recognition of a marriage. The issuing of a state marriage license does not condemn a state to hell. Nor are the regulations used to determine who gets a license and who does not, evil. All these things are equally within the rights of a state and its jurisdiction.

    But all of that righteous behavior on the part of the state ceases the instant it allows SSM. Suddenly a state no longer becomes an agent of the Lord in solemnizing and recognizing His ordinances–just as the ministers are agents and even those who make personal covenants are agents–but an agent of the devil, institutionalizing perversion.

    (Here is another scripture, illustrating what happens when perversion is institutionalized in government.)

    And he enacteth laws, and sendeth them forth among his people, yea, laws after the manner of his own wickedness; and whosoever doth not obey his laws he causeth to be destroyed; and whosoever doth rebel against him he will send his armies against them to war, and if he can he will destroy them; and thus an unrighteous king doth pervert the ways of all righteousness. (Mosiah 29:7)

    I believe the state should stop issuing marriage licenses not because marriage licenses are morally wrong, but because I believe in anarchism and would like to see the state disappear altogether, but as long as it is around, (as long as the people consent to its existence), let it conform to the laws of God.

    Now, the church leadership made an error in seeking to legalize prohibition. The country was all in an uproar about the evils of alcohol and the leadership tried to get the state to conform to the Word of Wisdom. Their error was that they tried to get a word of wisdom, which was to be sent greeting without constraint, legally constrained upon the people. So they went contrary to the very word of wisdom they were supposedly promoting. Then, when the nation sought to repeal prohibition, the leadership tried to keep the laws on the books, but lost the measure. In each case, they were doctrinally incorrect in their stance.

    But for the ERA amendment, they were doctrinally correct in opposing it. And their opposition to SSM is doctrinally sound, although any support for a monogamous marriage amendment may not be inspired of God.

    So, sometimes the leadership gets it right, and sometimes they get it wrong. In the case of SSM, though, they are on the Lord’s side.

  15. All right — I can agree with you on your point:

    If it never existed or was foreordained in the heavens, then it cannot be of God.

    meaning that nothing can be ordained [ordered/organized] among humans and have it be right in the eyes of God [be moral] unless that thing was foreordained in the heavenly council. People cannot do [with divine approval] things that were not had/done in the heavenly premortal life.

    I get back to the problem that I have — which is that the State is setting conditions on “marriage” and is charging for the legal “license” to marry. I think that were it not for the civil benefits and privileges afforded to “married” couples — then this wouldn’t be an issue at all. People who only feel loved, completed, and fulfilled in same-gender relationships are excluded from civil benefits for reasons that are tied to a theology they may not even believe in. That’s not the way the civil order should be.

    As I’ve said before, theologically I get it [God ordained men and women to marry each other across the genders, not within — etc.] — it’s just that when we allow the State to get involved, theology isn’t what we can go by [but the guiding principle needs to be equality under the law, even for people with opinions we disagree with].

    I suppose then [since you don’t see a problem with the civil union business] where I see common ground on all of this — is that I’d say I think the best thing to do would be to have all “marriage”-like unions [“real” ones or “fake” ones] that people want to organize be “civil unions” in the eyes of the State. They shouldn’t be calling anything “marriage” [since it isn’t their ordinance to define] nor charge for one of their legal “licenses” to marry [since the ordinance of marriage comes from God, money should not be a factor]. It could be called something like a “Civil Union Certification” that one could apply for [if they choose] that entitles them to receive the civil benefits and privileges we’re currently ascribing to civil marriages. Then institutions like churches would be free to only solemnize and recognize among their membership those unions that they feel adhere to God’s foreordained pattern.

  16. So — how would you answer these three questions from the OP:

    * what [is] the fundamental purpose of marriage covenants really?

    * what [is] God’s design for getting adults together into families really all about?

    * and what is He wanting us to do/foster in human society by organizing ourselves this way?

  17. I get back to the problem that I have — which is that the State is setting conditions on “marriage”…

    The LDS church (and many other churches) is guilty of that, too. So, this isn’t peculiar to just the State.

    …and is charging for the legal “license” to marry

    Both the State and the apostate Christian churches also charge to marry a person, but, as far as I know, the LDS church is free of this charge, so far. Perhaps the charging of marriage fees will be introduced into the church at some point…

    I think that were it not for the civil benefits and privileges afforded to “married” couples — then this wouldn’t be an issue at all.

    We could say the same thing about any of the apostate Christian churches, or even the LDS church. If you marry “wrong,” say by taking a second wife, you get ostracized by many churches, excommunicated, denied temple access and told to not use your priesthood. Surely many LDS are secret believers in the doctrine of plural marriage, but do not practice it because of the benefits and privileges afforded to monogamous couples, of being a member in good standing and having access to the temple. In this view, the State and the churches appear nearly identical.

    Again, because the State and the churches are essentially doing the same thing, should all be treated as a State, or should all be treated as a church? Here, also, is the stickiness of dealing with the State: are we to set the gospel aside when we deal with it? If the State is the main institutional instrument used by the devil to deceive, enslave, harm and destroy the masses, as it is my opinion that it is, would it be wise to enter that arena on the devil’s terms of “equality”?

    Currently, the law is equally applied, across all genders and races. Any man or woman may marry someone of the opposite sex, according to the regulations, such as age, etc. Gays and lesbians are not discriminated against in this matter. They also may civilly marry, according to the law, just like everyone else. But as in all things, the devil seeks to pervert every right thing under heaven, creating devil-inspired philosophies of men. Equality is about justice. But the devil cares little about justice. Is it justice to destroy, or attempt to destroy, the works of God? “If those works oppress a minority people, then, yes,” says the devil. Every sophistry his cunning mind can think of is used to convince people that marriage is an institution separated from God, and thus fair game to alter to suit one’s preferences.

    And so the word is that God cannot be brought into a discussion of civil laws. But that’s bull$#it. Americans are free to bring all their religious beliefs into politics. The separation of church and State is a prohibition of the State making its own religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.

    Anyway, if the State is acting as a church, then we American citizens, as a member of that “church,” are authorized to make sure, if it is within our power, that the State laws conform to the word of God.

    So, although

    people who only feel loved, completed, and fulfilled in same-gender relationships are excluded from civil benefits for reasons that are tied to a theology they may not even believe in

    it is perfectly acceptable, because the theology applies even within a civil order setting. As long as the majority chooses “that which is right“, meaning that the civil laws remain right before God, the minority can complain all they want, or they can just go find someone of the opposite sex to marry, like everyone else does. It is not justice to allow a wicked minority to corrupt righteous laws, despite their unjust and false claims to being discriminated against.

    That’s not the way the civil order should be.

    As I’ve said before, theologically I get it [God ordained men and women to marry each other across the genders, not within — etc.] — it’s just that when we allow the State to get involved, theology isn’t what we can go by [but the guiding principle needs to be equality under the law, even for people with opinions we disagree with].

    There is no such thing as a strictly civil order, at least insofar as we latter-day saints are concerned. Theology must, in all cases, be the thing which we go by, for it is our theology that produces all the virtuous things: justice, mercy, compassion, love, wisdom, knowledge, the gift of the Holy Ghost, etc. If a latter-day saint lays aside his theology, what then must he use to go by, the philosophies of men? the doctrines of the devil? Our theology and the manifestations of the Holy Ghost are what sets us latter-day saints apart. We are consecrated (set apart) for this very purpose, to show to people the light of the gospel, which we are to let shine, standing “as witnesses of God at all times and in all things, and in all places that [we] may be in.” In order to perform this duty which is devolved upon us, we cannot lay aside our theology, even in our dealings with the State, for how can we stand as a witness of God if we are systematically and intentionally removing Him and His laws from the conversation?

    The States are required to recognize the marriages of the other States. That, I believe, is sufficient equality under the law.

    Lastly, your final paragraph is exactly what I believe would be tho wisest course of action under the conditions we find ourselves in.

  18. Re: the three questions, I suppose there are many reasons, not just one, but based upon what I’ve read in the scriptures–and this post of yours is responsible for several days’ worth, now, of me reading the scriptures with this topic in mind–it appears that marriage is all about re-creating the image and functionality of God. Although the scripture says “one flesh,” I wonder if in that brief moment of physical connection, the spirit appendages of man and woman also connect, or merge into oneness. The whole thing appears patterned after the body of God, which is Father, Son and Holy Ghost with the same Spirit part in communion, thus they being “one God.” I wonder if–on a spirit body level–the spirit of man and woman, meaning the spherical part, is as complementary as the physical bodies that we can currently observe. I mean, just as a man and a woman physically “fit together” like a glove in intercourse, I wonder if a man’s spiritual sphere part and a woman’s spiritual sphere part also are designed with complementarity, “fitting together” on a spiritual plane. If so, then by us becoming “one flesh” we are enabled to comprehend, in some small way, the divine nature of God. But just as the one God is bound by covenant, so must we be bound. All this that we might become like Him, or know Him, which is eternal life.

    Obviously, if mankind is organized (through marriage) into the image of God, this points the attention to God from the very get-go, allowing us to pattern everything else after Him. When we procreate, we engage, with God, in creatio ex materia, as His “one flesh” agent, clothing any spirit sons and daughters He sends with flesh. The marriage covenant is intended to be permanent because it is patterned after the everlasting covenant entered into by the Godhead.

    Homosexual unions–although a physical connection takes place (between homosexual men)–may not have the same spirit connection (of spirit sphere parts), that may happen between men and women. Thus, the homosexual intercourse becomes primarily a carnal and sensual event, without the accompanying spiritual connection, which is why it is a sin. It is that spiritual connection that happens in heterosexual intercourse that creates the bond between two people, which is why homosexual men are voracious in their sexual appetites. Regardless of how many carnal lovers they have, they can never feel spiritually satisfied, and so the insatiated flesh keeps craving more flesh, from multiple partners.

    This reminds me of the movie, He’s Just Not That into You, where in one scene a straight guy was asking two gay men for pointers on how to nab a woman. The gay men respond by saying that gay signals don’t apply to straight relationships and then they demonstrate to the straight man how gay signals work. The two men then look at each other and they each count seconds, all the while never breaking eye contact with each other. “One, two, three.” Then they turn to the straight guy and say, “Oh, yeah, we’re definitely sleeping with each other tonight!” Then they demonstrate a gay signal that indicates disinterest and turn to each other again, counting yet again while not breaking eye contact, but for only two seconds. “No, sir, not tonight!” (Or something to that effect.) Although it was a comedy and intended to be funny, it was essentially correct. Homosexual “connections” are strictly carnal. They may have feelings of love, care, concern and friendship with long-term partners, but it is centered around the carnality of the perversion, with everything else secondary.

  19. the LDS church is free of this charge, so far.

    They’re free of the charge on their end — but they’re implicit in it because they require proof of a legal marriage license to perform both for-time civil ceremonies and temple sealings [for living couples obviously, they don’t require them for dead spouses].

    We could say the same thing about any of the apostate Christian churches, or even the LDS church.

    And to the extent that we could say the same thing about them, it’s just as wrong as what I’m saying about the State and marriage.

    The separation of church and State is a prohibition of the State making its own religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.

    I understand how the Wall of Separation was intended to keep the State out of the churches [and not vice-verse, to keep even a hint of religion out of government]. What I meant by:

    As I’ve said before, theologically I get it [God ordained men and women to marry each other across the genders, not within — etc.] — it’s just that when we allow the State to get involved, theology isn’t what we can go by [but the guiding principle needs to be equality under the law, even for people with opinions we disagree with].

    is that since the State is not comprised of a body of freely-gathered, like-minded people — that the standards must be set on the common ground that theists, non-theists, Christians, Jews, humanists, etc. can all agree on. There’s no appropriate way to tell two non-theist women [or a group of heterosexual polygamists for that matter] that they are barred from receiving the same civil rights, benefits, and privileges afforded to a heterosexual [and/or monogamous] pairing simply because the Christian God says that’s the way He created the world to be.

    You say:

    There is no such thing as a strictly civil order

    but I think that, with the legalized power of force that exists with the State — we need there to be. We live in a multicultural, polyreligious society. So I think that whatever the State is doing needs to be reduced down to the common denominator, that can apply equally to people of various religious persuasions: stuff like I described in the “Civil Union Certification” paragraph above.

  20. Homosexual unions–although a physical connection takes place (between homosexual men)–may not have the same spirit connection (of spirit sphere parts), that may happen between men and women. Thus, the homosexual intercourse becomes primarily a carnal and sensual event, without the accompanying spiritual connection, which is why it is a sin. It is that spiritual connection that happens in heterosexual intercourse that creates the bond between two people, which is why homosexual men are voracious in their sexual appetites. Regardless of how many carnal lovers they have, they can never feel spiritually satisfied, and so the insatiated flesh keeps craving more flesh, from multiple partners.

    Andrew S commented on the Having Their Hearts Knit Together in Unity and in Love post:

    From reading some of what you wrote in this article about unification (as opposed to pleasure), it reminded me of a recent paper I read that was a natural law justification/defense/accounting of marriage.

    To summarize the part that I thought was interesting, the paper said something like: marriage only describes those relationships in which unification is possible. Unification is only possible through a certain subset of penile/vaginal sex acts (obviously, you can have a “one night stand” or “casual sex” arrangement where both people are basically *using* each other to achieve pleasure, whether they care about the mutuality or do not…as you have also described). I think the reason why the author focused on unification (although s/he called it something different) was because normally, natural law arguments for marriage fall under criticism because they seem to imply that infertile couples (or fertile couples that nevertheless choose not to have children) are illegitimate. (And given the Catholic church’s position on contraception, I guess the latter group there does have some issues.) This paper wanted to avoid that.

    The notable point about this argument was that using this basis, the author argued against the possibility of unification through any other sex acts. In other words, there can be no such thing as gay marriage, because gay sex acts are never unified — at best they are just the mutual use of the other person for pleasure.

    And I think his statement: “marriage only describes those relationships in which unification is possible” is a good, succinct definition for God’s purpose of marriage — and sounds like what you were saying in your comment about that.

  21. Here’s the paper that Andrew S. was talking about in the comment I quoted from him above.

  22. They’re free of the charge on their end — but they’re implicit in it because they require proof of a legal marriage license to perform both for-time civil ceremonies and temple sealings [for living couples obviously, they don’t require them for dead spouses].

    That’s very true. I wasn’t thinking of that. I guess all of us are equally screwed up under the law (of God).

    Obviously, there must be compromise, and the civil union is one form of that. But no one need, or should, compromise on their religious beliefs. So, in a multicultural, polyreligious society, if you’ve got 7 Christians, 1 Mormon, 1 Buddhist and 2 atheists meeting to vote on SSM, all those that feel SSM is morally wrong have a moral obligation to keep the State free of institutionalized perversion, according to their religious beliefs. If the vote goes against SSM, and each one is asked, “Why did you vote against SSM?”, it is entirely appropriate to say that you believe it to be morally wrong, so you voted your conscience. In that case, that is exactly what you tell two non-theist women, even that they are barred because more people believed in the Christian God than in the Buddhist god. If there are more atheists deciding, and the vote goes in favor of SSM, what do you say to the God-fearing public? That marriage has been altered because more godless people voted that believers in God did, so the State has become godless, or a law unto itself. In either situation, God is a part of the conversation, either because He is put into the equation, or purposely taken out of it.

    And for any culture, whatever is the dominant religion will reflect in the laws of that State, because all cultures feel the very same way, that civil laws ought to reflect or conform to the laws of the (Mormon or Christian or Muslim or Jewish or whatever) God.

    So, for a Mormon, it is entirely appropriate to campaign against SSM and to vote against it, using their religion as their reason. Same goes for Catholics and Protestants and Muslims, etc. And it is entirely appropriate to compromise with whatever their religion allows, such as civil unions.

    Lastly, although a common denominator ought to be sought, the lowest common denominator is not the standard that ought to be used in government. If that is resorted to, then the State becomes base, indeed. No, the highest common denominator agreed upon by the majority, ought to be used. In democratic republics, or democracies, unanimity is not the standard, but majority rule, or the voice of the people. So, it doesn’t matter that the minority complain about what the majority have voted on, because the principle is that the majority commonly chooses the right, while the minority commonly chooses the wrong. The problem only arises if the majority chooses iniquity, then, in that case, we’re doomed.

    It seems to me that those that appeal to the lowest common denominator, something that everyone agrees upon, are striving for one thing only: taking God out of all civil discourse. For how do you reduce Christians and Mormons and Jews and atheists and Muslims down? By removing their religious beliefs. But this must not be done, for by so doing, you play into the devil’s hands. So, a purely civil order, or godless State, is the worst of all States. I remember communism being called, “godless communism,” because it was a purely “scientific” civic order that applied to all people equally, without regard to their religious beliefs. It was equally oppressive to everyone. This is the nature of the devil’s “equality” doctrine, or will it ultimately leads, to the enslavement of all people equally.

    In fact, the doctrine of equality seems to stem from the devil, not from God. Whereas God is content to allow people to receive whatever reward they are willing to receive, making a diverse and tiered system, the devil wanted to make sure that “not a single soul would be lost.” If none are lost, then all are saved, and if all are saved, then all are equal. This doctrine of equality for all is also played out in hell, in which everyone receives the same reward, regardless of the number or kind of sins you committed in mortality. With God, everything is tailored “according to the conditions among men”, making for inequalities everywhere. So, we get stewardship, concerns, and other unequal diversities, whereas with the devil we get a sea of sameness, or equality. So, again, looking at the State from a gospel perspective, and specifically at marriage and SSM, not everything is what it seems to be.

  23. One more thing about equality actually coming from the devil’s quarters…

    It may be that his plan is to equalize things absolutely, so that we no longer have male and female, but unisex. So, men are feminized and women masculinized, with the object of blurring the divisions to the point where technology can remove the distinctions altogether. In other words, it may have been that Lucifer’s pre-mortal alteration of the plan wasn’t just the removal of agency, but also distinction. Thus, had he been voted in, none of us would have been born male or female in this world. This seems to me to be something a devil would do.

    Also, another thing about unification of the spirit sphere. It may be a question of vortical spin or rotational direction. The male spirit sphere, having polar vortices which, perhaps rotate in one direction, say clock-wise and outward, and the female spirit sphere having polar vortices that rotate in the opposite direction, counter-clockwise and inward. When brought in close proximity, a male and female spirit sphere may naturally gravitate together and unify, such as how two magnets’ opposite poles stick together when brought close, becoming a single magnet. The spirit spheres of two females, or two males, though, may, also like magnets, repel each other, since like poles repel when brought in close proximity. So, no unification can be possible.

    Unlike a light plug being inserted into a socket, which achieves connection just with insertion, there may be a resonant aspect that is required for human connection. In other words, for the spirits to connect, both movement and pleasure must be present, which creates a resonance in the spirit spheres, allowing the two spheres to settle into each other. Thus, no connection can be achieved without the required movement, nor without the required pleasure. The pleasure, then, is not the end of sex, but what causes the two spheres to become one. In other words, this is what sexual pleasure is designed by God for, to connect the spheres.

    Masturbation, then, could be viewed as a means of resonating one’s own spirit sphere, without any resultant connection to someone else’s spirit sphere, which is why it is not a proper behavior. Homosexual behavior, then, could be viewed as a form of mutual masturbation, since it can create no divine oneness or connection.

  24. So, in a multicultural, polyreligious society, if you’ve got 7 Christians, 1 Mormon, 1 Buddhist and 2 atheists meeting to vote on SSM, all those that feel SSM is morally wrong have a moral obligation to keep the State free of institutionalized perversion, according to their religious beliefs. If the vote goes against SSM, and each one is asked, “Why did you vote against SSM?”, it is entirely appropriate to say that you believe it to be morally wrong, so you voted your conscience. In that case, that is exactly what you tell two non-theist women, even that they are barred because more people believed in the Christian God than in the Buddhist god. If there are more atheists deciding, and the vote goes in favor of SSM, what do you say to the God-fearing public? That marriage has been altered because more godless people voted that believers in God did, so the State has become godless, or a law unto itself. In either situation, God is a part of the conversation, either because He is put into the equation, or purposely taken out of it.

    I agree with that — that’s a fair point.

    So, it doesn’t matter that the minority complain about what the majority have voted on, because the principle is that the majority commonly chooses the right, while the minority commonly chooses the wrong. The problem only arises if the majority chooses iniquity, then, in that case, we’re doomed.

    While I know that King Mosiah stated that principle — the codified protections in the amendments to the constitution are there for the express purpose of protecting the minority from forms of majority-rule. Meaning, there are certain things that simply can’t come down to “majority rules”: what you believe, what you say, what you publish, with whom you gather, how you’re treated when criminally accused, etc. There are certain things that just by virtue of being “human” — society “owes” you and can never take away from you [life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness — etc.].

    So I guess the question would be, “Is marriage a civil right?” — or “Is a marriage relationship between two consenting adults the kind of thing all people have an in-born right to desire, seek after, and posses? Because if it is a civil right [like not being an involuntary servant is], then that’s not the sort of thing that can be voted on or decided by majority rule [that’s why they’re called rights].

    Meaning, do people who don’t believe in any deity who would have ordained marriage relationships according to some stated will, design, and purpose — do they still have claim on the state to have the same relationship-recognition that is given to those who do believe that stuff? Then, of course, if it’s not a civil right — then I’d suppose the majority can decide its conditions and who merits official relationship-recognition [and who doesn’t] however they see fit.

  25. So I guess the question would be, “Is marriage a civil right?” — or “Is a marriage relationship between two consenting adults the kind of thing all people have an in-born right to desire, seek after, and posses? Because if it is a civil right [like not being an involuntary servant is], then that’s not the sort of thing that can be voted on or decided by majority rule [that’s why they’re called rights].

    Meaning, do people who don’t believe in any deity who would have ordained marriage relationships according to some stated will, design, and purpose — do they still have claim on the state to have the same relationship-recognition that is given to those who do believe that stuff? Then, of course, if it’s not a civil right — then I’d suppose the majority can decide its conditions and who merits official relationship-recognition [and who doesn’t] however they see fit.

    There are civil and political rights, as well as natural and legal rights. I’m not exactly sure what you mean by “civil right,” but there is no doubt that marriage is a right that people can exercise under the proper conditions.

    As to the type of right it is, it is a religious rite that man has been authorized by God to enter into, regardless as to their level of belief. Thus, it is a right in the religious sense, just as we have the rights of the priesthood and a right to the constant companionship of the Holy Ghost. These latter rights are neither civil, legal, political or natural. They are religious. So, in the same sense, has marriage, and also prayer, been given to all mankind as gospel ordinances, or rites, and so everyone has the right to pray or contract marriage.

    Marriage pre-dates the State and although every culture gives it a different origin story, ours comes from latter-day revelations which affirm the Adam and Eve narrative. But the State is free to define and recognize marriage however it sees fit. It can recognize marriage in the rite’s fullness (D&C 132’s plural and celestial marriage) or just a part of it (monogamy). It has no obligation to recognize anyone’s marriage, or even marriage, at all, except insofar as we cause laws to be written to that end. If the State stopped recognizing the existence of marriage, marriage would still go on.

    In none of these things does the State do wrong, or violate anyone’s right to marriage, for it is a religious right. Even if the State redefined marriage so as to include same-sex unions, this doesn’t violate anyone’s rights (except maybe the right to have truth and honesty in government). But if it were to do this, the State would com under condemnation, nonetheless, because it would be guilty of usurping authority and of spreading lies. For example, technically the State can, by legislation, vote or edict, declare that lions are now defined as white, horse-like animals with black stripes (in other words, that they are now zebras) and then use its power of propaganda to teach the new lion definition to everyone. Of course, they would be lyin’ about the lion, but they could do it.

    This is, essentially, what is going on with SSM. Marriage is what it is and isn’t what it isn’t. So, although they are free to call white black and black white, if they do end up calling something “marriage,” which isn’t marriage, they invoke the Savior’s words,

    whatsoever is more or less than this, cometh of evil

    They have no excuses on this issue, for the preponderance of all current marriage is heterosexual, demonstrating that this in the standard. As marriage is considered a cultural universal, it is found pretty much everywhere on the planet. Even if you dig in history, trying to find historical examples to support SSM, we still end up with heterosexual unions as the only legitimate form in almost all cases. For example, the State is based on Rome, and even the Roman law only recognized opposite-sex marriage:

    It should be noted, however, that conubium existed only between a civis Romanus and a civis Romana (that is, between a male Roman citizen and a female Roman citizen), so that a marriage between two Roman males (or with a slave) would have no legal standing in Roman law (apart, presumably, from the arbitrary will of the emperor in the two aforementioned cases). Furthermore, according to Susan Treggiari, “matrimonium is an institution involving a mother, mater. The idea implicit in the word is that a man takes a woman in marriage, in matrimonium ducere, so that he may have children by her.” Still, the lack of legal validity notwithstanding, there is a consensus among modern historians that same-sex relationships existed in ancient Rome, but the exact frequency and nature of “same-sex unions” during that period is obscure.

    In 342 AD Christian emperors Constantius II and Constans issued a law in the Theodosian Code (C. Th. 9.7.3) prohibiting same-sex marriage in Rome and ordering execution for those so married.

  26. By “civil right”, I meant pretty much what I saw on that wiki article you linked to:

    a class of rights that protect individuals’ freedom from unwarranted infringement by governments and private organizations, and ensure one’s ability to participate in civil life without discrimination or repression.

    Civil rights include the ensuring of peoples’ physical and mental integrity, life, and safety; protection from discrimination on grounds such as race, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, colour, ethnicity, religion, or disability; and individual rights such as privacy, the freedoms of thought and conscience, speech and expression, religion, the press, assembly and movement.

    I know that marriage predates the State and that anybody is free to feel love towards, cohabitate with, be intimate with, form a mutually-understood relationship of fidelity, etc. with any other person — with or without the State’s recognition. I’d consider that a human right [or natural right].

    So the reason I asked about marriage being a “civil right” or not is because the State attaches civil privileges and benefits onto relationships that have their legal recognition [whereas the unlicensed couples are free to do as they want because they aren’t seeking any such recognition]. If marriage is a “civil right”, then same-gender couples should have access to the same legal recognition that heterosexual couples get [not a “separate but equal” form of legal recognition]. Now — if marriage is not a civil right [like church membership is not a civil right, for example], then I would say that a majority can set any conditions they want to on it [just like we set all sorts of conditions on being a member in good standing].

  27. Okay, in that case, then no, I do not view marriage as a civil right. However, protection from discrimination is, but in this case, there’s no discrimination. No one is barred from marrying because of their sexual orientation, race, etc. The only prohibition, in the 39 or so states that do not allow it, is that no one can “marry” someone of the same sex with state authorization and recognition within that state, and that applies equally to everyone, regardless of race, religion, etc., although they must recognize the legal marriages that occurred in other states.

  28. Hi guys,

    I read on this site from time to time and enjoy some articles (such as those mind-benders from the Watcher), while at other times I disagree. I have never, however, commented on anything. I read, I take in and process and let the Holy Spirit work on me. In this article I do want to comment though as the comments were just as important as the article, perhaps even more so.

    I wonder why when the Lord has stated in the scriptures that the Seer and the Spokesman will lay down doctrine to the confounding of all contention (or something to that effect), that we are still at odds with things like polygamy, from that very suspicious section 132, which I find dubious in all aspects from its delayed appearance from Brigham- who is he to say he had the revelation locked in his desk as the people were not ready for it, until HE thought the time was right…and I guess the Lord, IF He did give that revelation at a particular time, didn’t know when the time was right? I cannot imagine Moses coming down from the mountain and saying, ‘move out of the way, I gotta bury these things for a few years!’…or Isaiah doing something similar, or Joseph saying to Moroni, ‘listen fella, these folks just ain’t ready for this stuff…ya dig?!’ But I digress…

    Anyway, I just want to say, Anarchist your points are spot on. The marriage article in the mid-1830’s that was removed and replaced by the dubious section 132 clearly stated and testified of marriage being purely being between one man and a women. I loved the other things you brought to support that like the magnets…in fact nature is full of things that support this simple concept that Eve was taken from Adam and they were to become one AGAIN, with faith and an eye single to seeking the Lord and living in and for him.

    May I add that I have yet to be convinced, to borrow from you Justin, any place in the scriptures that same sex marriage is ordained of God, and will ever be. It is my personal opinion that if the LDS church ever goes that full step towards wordliness and popularity, and allows gay marriage to take place in chapels and/or temples (not as far fetched as we may think), that like Solomon’s temple, destruction will start upon ‘my house first’…

    Until you really know and understand how pedophilia in high places use the somewhat naive gay masses to steer their secret agenda to the point where Satan and his angels can work their darkest evils- and I believe that some of those in high places probably have direct contact with him gained through extremely evil child sacrifice etc- it’s honestly a matter of fact being far more stranger and evil, than fiction.

    Count me in for the anti-gay marriage platform…

  29. I don’t mean to tell you how to run your blog brothers but there is an awakening that needs to occur concerning the servant of god in the last days. anyone out there who posts here want to get that spark going on this blog? its so largely followed that i think its imperative we focus on accepting the law giver, rather than spend all our time debating how to correctly interpret his laws. don’t get me wrong i have always enjoyed reading these blogs, the gemtam is agreat journey although i didn’t partake in it as much as i could have. suffice it to say, WE HAVE BEEN CALLED TO DECLARE REPENTANCE. Join with me in sounding this ensign. REPENT YE WICKED PRIEST OF THIS PEOPLE AND TURN UNTO YOUR GOD!

  30. Hello, I haven’t read all of the comments because I don’t have three hours, but I want to leave my opinion. I kind of skipped around in the comments.
    First I’d like to respond to the OP and a couple of comments
    Before I add my comment, I like to mention that I’m a liberal Mormon, as in I think it’s important to analyze scriptures in context -historically and socially- and it is my belief that the scriptures are written by men under the guidance of the Lord; that is to say, the social beliefs of men who have written the Scriptures influence what they write. We must keep these things in mind.

    I actually mentioned to a couple of people that I really don’t like this website because you analyze scriptures and the results point towards the GEMTAM (which I think is admirable and the way of God), but when it comes to homosexuality, you seem reluctant to analyze scriptures and just accept mainstream LDS opinion on it. Which is obnoxious.

    I would like to point out that it is clear that most of the scriptures are clearly written to men. You see that there are often instructions for men, but none for women. I would also like to point out that often in the Old Testament days, conquering men would rape both men and women as a domination ritual. In the New Testament day, we have to remember that in Greece, pederasty was all the rage; this is a fancy word for pedophilia. I would argue and the Spirit testifies to me that pedophilia, sexual assault, and rape are sins second only to murder. Also remember that much of the Bible and BoM is influenced by the social customs of the day. Reread all of Exodus and Leviticus and tell me if you want to keep all of those social customs.My conclusion is that many of the scriptures referring homosexuality were in fact referring to these sexual sins; possibly the writers had no words for this other than homosexuality, or perhaps the original meaning was lost in translation.

    Also I find it curious that there is only one vague address towards female homosexuality.

    Either way, I think the government should get out of our marriages and downgrade everyone to civil unions in order to receive legal benefits. Marriage would therefore be something given socially by a community or religious group. This would make arguments about homosexual marriage or polygamy moot points. For more details on this, I highly recommend Andrew March’s “Is There A Right To Polygamy? Marriage, Equality And Subsidizing Families In Liberal Public Justification,” though 1/3 of the paper is March singing the praises of liberal democracy. Nonetheless, the paper and his conclusions are excellent.

    In reply to comments-

    One, LDS Anarchist, serial monogamist homosexuals have just as much diversity as serial monogamist heterosexuals. I know heterosexual men who have had sex with 300-1000 women. I know homosexual men who have only had one romantic partner in their lives. It varies as much as with straight, bi, and gay people. Promiscuity is a problem, yes. But it’s a problem with anyone. Obviously we want to make families about family values, and that includes commitment and honoring covenants. Allowing or disallowing homosexuality would not and will not change that.
    Yes, sexuality is fluid, but I don’t think making homosexual behavior acceptable would increase homosexual behavior, one because there would still be a social stigma against it. Homophobia is not just denying marriage rights; according to the”…U.S. Department of Justice’s Bureau of Justice Statistics’ special reports “Hate Crime Victimization, 2003-2013,” 234,979 hate crimes based specifically on sexual orientation occurred across the United States from 2007 to 2011, up 2 percent from the period of 2003 to 2006.” People are assaulted and murdered for expressing homosexual behavior or attraction. I’m sure we can all agree that’s terrible, whatever opinion you have on homosexuals. Even if it was technically acceptable, the stigma and violence against homosexuals would and will still persist for at least twenty years, I predict.
    The second reason why homosexual behavior won’t increase is because it’s generally not a choice. (One way to demonstrate that is the rate of people who commit suicide because of harassment due to their homosexuality. If they chose to be homosexual, why didn’t they just stop?) Some people are attracted to the opposite sex, some attracted to the same sex, some are attracted to both. The fluidity with sexuality is probably accounting for those that are attracted to both sexes. I would say that if someone who is attracted to both sexes (aka bisexual) has a homosexual relationship or marriage because it is technically legal, it doesn’t change the fact that they were already bisexual. So I don’t think it will change much.

    Fusion -Pedophiles are not attracted to men or women. They are attracted to boys and girls. They are attracted to weak, vulnerable people who cannot fight back. Men who molest little boys do so not because they are attracted to males, but because men have more access to boy children than girl children. Pedophiles who molest and rape the same-sex are not the same as homosexuals (or heterosexuals) who want to make relationships with consenting adults. and severe, violent sexual sins like that will never be okay.

    Anyways, that’s my interpretation. Thanks for all your thoughts on this – that we are even discussing this shows a great increase in tolerance. Have a blesst day.

  31. Luet,

    I can’t speak for Justin, but I am all for the State getting out of the marriage business and into just using civil unions for everyone. So, we are in agreement there.

    This post and the one that Justin put on the Wheat and Tares blog contain my comments regarding where homosexual behavior and SSM sit in relation to gospel laws. I find both homosexual behavior and SSM to be unjustified according to my studies of the scriptures. I realize that there are certain scriptures in the Bible that speak of homosexual behavior and I understand that there are various interpretations of those scriptures, which paint it as either acceptable or unacceptable, depending on the interpretation subscribed to, but I didn’t arrive at my conclusions from the Bible alone, but from the latter-day revelations. In other words, regardless of how I interpret those biblical verses, when I look at the entire canon, it still makes homosexual behavior and SSM morally wrong. Please see all my comments on those two posts (even though each comment is really long) to see my reasoning. I recommend that you read what I wrote on W&T first and then read what I wrote here, since that was the order of my comments.

    Regarding whether same-sex attraction is a choice or not, the new (as yet, unconfirmed) theory is that epigenetics, not genetics is the culprit.

    Study Finds Epigenetics, Not Genetics, Underlies Homosexuality

    Homosexuality as a Consequence of Epigenetically Canalized Sexual Development

    We will have to see what, if anything, comes of that. In the meantime, though, the law of chastity doesn’t give any wiggle room concerning these behaviors. Also, my own studies into mental processes show that agency is involved, even in sexual attraction. But I don’t desire to divulge anything about that, so I’ll just leave the claim unsupported.

  32. I understand that. Nonetheless, your opinions in no way effect mine. I will say this though; if a man
    (person) hardens his heart, he receives no revelation, correct? So if a man, even a man as powerful and permeated the Spirit as the Prophet, hardens his heart on a certain issue and decides he knows what’s best, and revelation the Lord may give him cannot be heard.

    Also, I’d like to copy & paste my theory about the origins of homosexuality. This was an email to a non-LDS friend, so it takes a secular voice and is not cited. I can look up citations if you wish:

    “Some background info presented by “Sex at Dawn” and other books

    Agriculture introduced the idea of possession as a mean of power. Women became possessed by men, leading to polygyny for those in ‘high social order’ and monogamy for the common man. The development of monogamy also doubled as the development of misogyny.
    Reproduction wasn’t linked to sex or relationships previously; it was thought much like spontaneous generation. After this realization went under way, women were “domesticated” and controlled, much like fields and animals.

    Much archeological and biological evidence support the idea that humans, before the development of agriculture, had multi-male, multi-female romantic and sexual relationships. (GEMTAM)

    For example, has it ever occurred to you that men are naturally quick to ejaculate, but women are multi-orgasmic? Or the fact that the only mammals that make loud noises during sex do so to attract other partners? Or that the construction of the genitals, most noticeably the penis, is very similar, if not exactly the same as animals who are ‘opportunistic mates’.

    All of the apes we are similar to have either free romance and sex between all members of the tribe(even homosexual relationships) or polygyny. The only apes that have monogamy are gibbons, but they don’t form tribal groups.

    The tribal nature of humans actual explains, evolutionary, why homosexuality may have emerged.

    There are two types of observed homosexual sex in non-human animals

    Dominance or those parallel to heterosexual relationships.

    Dominance homosexual activities usually occurs in animals that have solitary groups, like Lions.

    Parallel homosexual relationships usually occur in animals that have large social ties and form ‘tribes’. Like lesbian elephants and pansexual bonobo chimps.

    These animals often have an excess of children because the tribal system is efficient at reducing infant mortality.

    Therefore, often parallel homosexual relationships develop to care for young without increasing the population past carrying capacity. Many animals are ‘bisexual’ in order to accommodate for this possibility.

    Have there always been homosexual and bisexual people? Have there always been the same percentage?

    The fact is, I would say there are two possibilities.
    1.) the percentage of gay people has been the same throughout history, but it’s only now that you can be publicly gay (in some cultures) and not lynched.
    Or 2.) considered the evolutionary reason for homosexuality presented just now by great scientist Luet (I came up with that idea from research, was not in the books, books just game me science from which I made conclusion, Luet so great)…as the population increased, the defense mechanism that produced parents, but not offspring was activated more and more often, creating a larger percentage of homosexuals are the population grew.”

  33. I very much agree with Luet about:

    I would like to point out that it is clear that most of the scriptures are clearly written to men. You see that there are often instructions for men, but none for women.

    and would add that they were clearly written to heterosexual, cis-gendered men. As such, we are simply inferring and extrapolating when we get into the non-binary, complex issues of gender and sexuality today.

    What Luet said is about the same feeling I have about the D&C scriptures that told Joseph Smith about “man” being commanded to cleave unto “his wife”. Of course those scriptures were written from a heterosexual man’s perspective — a heterosexual man received the revelation. What else would we expect?

    When it comes to issues that weren’t issues when revelations that are in the current canon were received — I would like to see a new revelation that explicitly addresses the issue before I make a judgement one way or the other. That’s how I am with committed, fidelitous same-gender relationships. I don’t want to use revelations that weren’t given with this kinda relationships in mind to condemn [or justify] them.

  34. Oh yeah, and I agree with:

    I can’t speak for Justin, but I am all for the State getting out of the marriage business and into just using civil unions for everyone. So, we are in agreement there.

  35. What Luet said is about the same feeling I have about the D&C scriptures that told Joseph Smith about “man” being commanded to cleave unto “his wife”. Of course those scriptures were written from a heterosexual man’s perspective — a heterosexual man received the revelation. What else would we expect?

    The problem with that logic is that we must also say, “Of course D&C 132 was written from a polygamist man’s perspective — a polygamist man received the revelation. What else would we expect?” This is, of course, exactly what those that don’t believe D&C 132 to be from Joseph say, that it came from Brigham Young, a polygamist man. But if we say it came from Joseph, then we must say that Joseph wasn’t a polygamist man when he received that revelation, and its doctrine went beyond his current beliefs. Which kind of messes up the logic that God gives people revelation based on and tailored to what they already believe.

    Another example would be D&C 76. Can we really say, “Of course D&C 76 was written from the perspective of a man who believed in multiple kingdoms of glory— a man who believed in multiple kingdoms of glory received the revelation. What else would we expect?” But Joseph didn’t believe that before that revelation was received, nor did any of the other saints.

    I suppose other examples could be brought up, such as that Joseph already held the bizarre perspective of what is found in the Book of Abraham and voila!, a text that matched his beliefs came out of his “translation,” etc. But the historical evidence, at least what I have read, doesn’t seem to match that, at all. He wondered about this, that and the other, things that were happening in his time or in former times, and then asked about them, and ended up receiving something new. Instead of confirming his view, he had to stretch his beliefs many times in order to accommodate the new info.

    A strict view of confirmatory-only revelation (confirming what one already believes without adding anything new) does away with the concept of a restoration of anything. If such were the case, then the restoration is simply Joseph Smith, Jun., meaning that God “restored” truth to earth by allowing Joseph to be born and to believe this and that and then to receive “revelation” that his beliefs were correct and of God.

    My own revelatory experiences don’t hold out to that view, either. I was a monogamist man, at one point, desirous to only have one wife, the love of my life, but then had a revelation that indicated I would one day have more than one wife. It didn’t confirm my beliefs, but expanded them, and I had to come to terms with the revelation, which I did by applying a strictly afterlife fulfillment to it. But then I got another revelation which, again, did not confirm my beliefs, but expanded them to include the possibility of fulfillment in this life. And so on with the other revelations I’ve received. It is true that sometimes I have had already held beliefs confirmed to me, but other times my beliefs have had to be discarded because of the new information.

    As far as Joseph’s revelations, I can say that if they have followed the same pattern as the ones that I have received, then God will correct whatever errors apply to the topic at hand and confirm whatever beliefs happen to be true. In other words, when Joseph asked about marriage and the law of chastity, he did not make inquiry for the heterosexual man, but for man (without adjectives), as in all men, and so the revelations and laws he received were to apply to everyone, not just the homosexual. When Joseph was specific in his inquiries, he received specific answers, and when general, he received answers of a more general nature. The revelations are given in a general sense, applying to all men, which indicates that Joseph inquired of all men, not just the heterosexual designation.

    We are only justified in applying the scriptures in a narrow (heterosexual) sense if there is evidence that the question was narrow. But no such evidence exists. Therefore, the general commandment to marry a wife and have sex with only her must apply generally to hetero- and homo- sexual men. The revelation is written generally, and so, its application must be taken generally, because if it was intended to apply to only hetero- men, it would have been written more specifically and narrowly, for Joseph was aware of the practice of homosexual behavior, if from nothing more than the Bible, and he was more than capable of asking about only hetero- men, but he didn’t.

    Again, no correction is in the revelations, meaning that no double standard (this for hetero-s and that for homo-s) is offered in the revelations, so we cannot say that it wasn’t given because it wasn’t asked. It was asked. In case you still don’t get my meaning, Joseph obviously asked a general question, concerning all men, that encompassed both orientations, which would cause the Lord to give the laws that apply to both, which He did. Had Joseph asked specifically about just hetero-s, then you could be justified in saying that more revelation is needed for the homosexuals, but since there is no evidence that such specificity was implied or intended, we can only treat the revelation as having general application.

    Just because Joseph himself was a heterosexual man doesn’t have anything, at all, to do with whether the revelations he received apply to all men or just heterosexuals. Only the question he posed and the response he received apply. And based on those two factors alone, we must say that gay men must marry themselves wives and have sex with only them to remain right before the Lord.

  36. You mistook what I meant by Joseph having received a revelation about heterosexual men marrying women. I didn’t mean that you’ll only hear what you already think in a revelation — I meant that the revelation will be suited to the circumstances of the receiver, or written down in terms of the worldview/culture of the prophet doing the writing.

    So, for example, D&C 76 mentions sons of perdition. Why? I’d say it’s because men received and wrote down that vision. I’d say if Emma had received it and wrote it down — she’d have described daughters of perdition. In the endowment ceremony — when Peter, James, and John are visiting Adam and Eve without disclosing their true identities — they speak only to Adam, they only ask him if he’s sold his tokens for money, they only commend him for his integrity. Why? Because it doesn’t matter if Eve sold her tokens? Because her integrity in keeping true and faithful to her covenants made in the Garden aren’t commendable? I’d say it’s because men formulated the endowment and did so at a time when women didn’t even have the right to vote yet.

    Our language is entirely male-focused because it’s been through a thousand years of male-privelaged, patriarchal culture. So obviously the revelations received by men are going to talk about “the sons of men”, etc. for no other reason than the circumstances of it having been an English speaker who received/translated the word of God.

    So people who don’t have patriarchal, heterosexual male privilege [e.g., women, homosexuals, trans-gendered people, people who believe in the idea that men and women deserve to be treated equally] spend their whole lives having to re-interpret and extrapolate everything they read in the scriptures or hear in the temple, etc. [inferring a heavenly Mother and what Her role would be, reading “daughter” and “woman” into scriptures like, “my work and my glory is to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man” and “it is the nature and disposition of almost all men to exercise unrighteous dominion.“, or guessing whether or not there should be priestesses in the church of God [like we’re told there will be hereafter] and what their roles/duties would be, etc.].

    Now — it may be the case that scriptures use “he”, “man”, “sons”, etc. it’s because God always means Male Humans. I’m not saying that that can’t be true. However, given the male-focused nature of our language — where we always speak collectively from a man’s perspective — I’d say [unless we get specifically told otherwise] it’s pretty much anyone’s guess as to which times the Lord meant Males separately and which times He meant Males+Females collectively [since the revelation won’t tell you which one He meant].

  37. After I learned Spanish, I started to view English through a Spanish filter, so that the masculine and feminine forms of Spanish were layed over the English that my brain was reading. So, for example, we read “sons of perdition” but my brain sees “los hijos de perdicion.” In Spanish, “the sons” can be translated “los hijos” but if there are 99 sons and just 1 daughter among the group, they are still called the masculine “los hijos” instead of splitting it between the masculine “los hijos” and the feminine “las hijas.” The rule in Spanish is that if a group is all female, it gets the feminine designation, but if even one male is present, it gets the masculine.

    The revelations given to Joseph have always struck me as a translation from Hebrew into English. Hebrew, apparently, also has these masculine and feminine forms of words, and, perhaps, also follows the same rule as Spanish, that even if one male is present in the group, the whole bunch is called using the masculine form of the word. So, then, “sons of perdition” would not necessarily mean only males, but potentially a mix of men and women.

    Joseph always seemed to do a machine translation, so “sons of perdition” in Hebrew would become “sons of perdition” in English, even though perhaps the Hebrew version allows a broader meaning of the term, inclusive of both genders. Completely unfolded, it would become “the sons and daughters of perdition” but in a tight machine translation, we only get the “sons” part. I don’t know Hebrew and this is all speculative, but since nothing Joseph has brought forth has been translated into Hebrew, we can’t test whether there is any basis to any of this, but given that Hebrew is a “gendered language,” I suspect that there may be truth to it.

    For example, Adam meant Adam, the person, but also adam (man, or mankind, inclusive of both genders). So, when I read the scriptures, although the words are in English, I suspect that the full meaning of the words is in Hebrew.

    If so, and I admit that that is a big if, then the revelations can be unfolded simply by putting them into Hebrew and then doing a Chronicle Project or other translation back into English. Such an experiment might show that regardless of the gender of the receiver, male or female, “sons of perdition” can be translated either as “sons of perdition” or as “sons and daughters of perdition,” but not as “daughters of perdition.” In other words, who is receiving the message may be of secondary importance to the language the message is being transmitted in.

    In my own revelations, they have all been translations into English from something else. In other words, intelligence was communicated to me and then I had to figure out the rights words (in English) to put them in, to approximate the concept. I can’t say what the original language is, just that it isn’t English. Perhaps it is Hebrew. Joseph’s revelations may have been similarly conceived, as translations, except during those times he heard an audible voice, such as from an angel, etc.

    There is a theory that English actually descended from Hebrew.

    5. Mozeson: A Hebrew scholar

    In his encyclopedic work, “The Word, The Dictionary That Reveals the Hebrew Source of English.” Hebrew language scholar, Dr. Isaac Elchanan Mozeson, gives over 5,000 English words with a Semitic origin. Dr. Mozeson teaches the English language at Yeshiva University, and completed ten years of original research in this subject. His conclusion was “that English and Hebrew are profoundly connected. ” His findings show that “many more words should be acknowledged as borrowings from the Hebrew. Some of these giant oversights include ogre (from mighty Og, king of Bashan) and colossus (a Greek version of the Hebrew Gollius, familiar to English speakers as Goliath). ” Do some words sound alike in Hebrew and English? He says, “There are hundreds of English and Hebrew words that sound remarkably alike and mean the same but are not cited by linguists. A few of these are abash and boosha, albino and labhan, evil and avel, lick and lakak, regular and rageel, and direction and derech. ” Further evidence of a connection exists in word meanings. He tells us, “Many names of animals only have meanings in Hebrew. Giraffe means ‘neck’ and skunk means ‘stink'” in Semitic speech. A few additional examples from Dr. Mozeson are given in the adjacent box. His scholarly encyclopedia of the Hebrew origin of English words was published in 1989, quickly sold out, and has not yet been reprinted.

    (Taken from this page.)

    I bring all this up because when you say,

    Our language is entirely male-focused because it’s been through a thousand years of male-privelaged, patriarchal culture. So obviously the revelations received by men are going to talk about “the sons of men”, etc. for no other reason than the circumstances of it having been an English speaker who received/translated the word of God.

    it may have more to do with the English of the speaker being descended from Hebrew, than the speaker himself. In other words, when you put things into Hebrew, does it come out male-centered and patriarchal? Spanish certainly has that flavor. Perhaps Hebrew does, too.

  38. If anyone wants to learn more about Isaac E. Mozeson, visit his web site, Edenics.org, his You Tube channel, or check out his first book The Word: The Dictionary That Reveals The Hebrew Source of English on Amazon.com. (Although he now has an updated e-book available from his web site.) I’ll include one of his You Tube videos below:

  39. My own revelations have been the same as you described:

    In my own revelations, they have all been translations into English from something else. In other words, intelligence was communicated to me and then I had to figure out the rights words (in English) to put them in, to approximate the concept.

    and that is part of my point. And I also think that this “figuring out the right words” — or filtering it through your language as best you can — is part of what Luet was saying:

    I would like to point out that it is clear that most of the scriptures are clearly written to men. You see that there are often instructions for men, but none for women. I would also like to point out that often in the Old Testament days, conquering men would rape both men and women as a domination ritual. In the New Testament day, we have to remember that in Greece, pederasty was all the rage; this is a fancy word for pedophilia. I would argue and the Spirit testifies to me that pedophilia, sexual assault, and rape are sins second only to murder. Also remember that much of the Bible and BoM is influenced by the social customs of the day. Reread all of Exodus and Leviticus and tell me if you want to keep all of those social customs.

    My conclusion is that many of the scriptures referring homosexuality were in fact referring to these sexual sins; possibly the writers had no words for this other than homosexuality, or perhaps the original meaning was lost in translation.

    As you said earlier — marriage is described in the scriptures as “man taking a wife”. Now is that gender-specific [like you said it was when you were writing that point] — or is that inclusively referring to both men and women as “man” [so that it can be unfolded in English to read, “people taking a spouse”]? I don’t pretend to say I know that it’s one way or the other. And I think a person’s decision in that regard is just a guess.

    It may very well be that the marriage covenant ordained by God was for the purpose of joining two people together in a relationship of fidelity, cooperation, commitment, service, intimacy, fellowship, emotional fulfillment, and companionship — without needing them to be hetero- [or monogamous]. Until I know for certain [from a revelation in gender-specific terms] — I think it’s best that we associate “marriage” with people having happy, loving, consensual, and faithful cooperative-unions and teach committed sexual ethics for all adults [for either sexual orientation or number of spouses]. I think that if anything’s an “abomination”, it’s not homosexuality [as such], but it’s unions where people are taken advantage of, abused, lied to, cheated on, etc. It bothers me that we’re so focused on the hot button issue of “gay people” that the real issues affecting marriage [like spousal abuse, poverty, emotional fulfillment, etc.] end-up being ignored. It’s those things that really make-or-break the “Institution of Marriage” — not the existence of gay couples getting legal recognition of their union from the state.

  40. As you said earlier — marriage is described in the scriptures as “man taking a wife”. Now is that gender-specific [like you said it was when you were writing that point] — or is that inclusively referring to both men and women as “man” [so that it can be unfolded in English to read, “people taking a spouse”]? I don’t pretend to say I know that it’s one way or the other. And I think a person’s decision in that regard is just a guess.

    Setting aside Hebrew, which I don’t know, for a moment, English does have specific rules that allow us to make certain determinations as to what a text can and cannot mean. Like Spanish, the masculine words cover both male and female genders, but the feminine words cover only females. So, the gender-specific pronoun “he” can be referring to a male, or, if talking about a person, without knowing whether it is a male or a female, the rules call for using “he”, even if it turns out to be a female. Granted, there is a huge push in modern society to get away from such gender-specific language and use, instead, gender neutral language, but during the time of Joseph Smith, the modern trend had not yet begun.

    So, although a “man” could be referring to a specific male person, or an unknown male or female person, the use of “woman” is never understood to be a male. Or, when using “wife,” it in never understood that this is a mere spouse of either gender. So, the context of the saying, according to the rules of English grammar, reveal the meaning to be nothing other than a male taking a female as his wife. To come to any other conclusion is to throw away the rules of English grammar, making no English text understandable.

    It’s been years since I’ve studied English grammar, but looking at the grammar book that comes with the Robinson Curriculum, the following, concerning gender-specific words, is written:

    English is (or was) generally very straightforward in matters of gender. Inanimate or abstract things are generally referred to as it (except as stated below); animate things that come in male or female forms are referred to as he or she, respectively. When the sex of the person is not known, or could be either, forms of the pronoun he have traditionally been used. (In computer parlance, the “default option” is male. Or, as Harvey’s states, “English being destitute of a pronoun of the third person singular and common gender, usage has sanctioned the employment of the masculine forms for this purpose.”) If a sentence is about a student, and it could be any student, the pronoun he would be used. But if the sentence is about students in an all-girls’ school, the pronoun she would be used.

    In the days of political correctness in the late twentieth century, this simple grammatical rule has been attacked as a “sexist” expression. The style manuals of many publications now require all kinds of contortions to avoid favoring the pronoun he or “discriminating” against the pronoun she. Politically correct writings will be full of expressions such as his or her, she or he, or, worse, s/he. Some writers would prefer to violate clear grammatical rules and use the plural form they rather than the dreaded he. Others consistently use she as the default option, alternate the masculine or feminine forms, or (apparently) choose a form at random as by flipping a coin. The reader could be so distracted by the pronouns that he misses the writer’s message–or the choice of pronouns becomes the main message.

    I won’t quote the entire section, but this sentence seems to support what I’m trying to say:

    (For some of these terms, it is quite acceptable, or even preferable these days, to use the “masculine” form to refer to a woman, but not the reverse.)

    Anyway, so it would be a wrest of the scripture, according to my understanding of English grammar rules, to convert “man taking a wife” into “people taking a spouse.” Now, an English grammar book may not be the revelation you require to come to the proper conclusion, but it does reveal the proper way to read and understand English and if you apply the rules of grammar that existed when Joseph received his revelations, or when the King James translators made their translations, it all points to the same conclusion: that homosexual behavior and SSM are not justifiable before the Lord.

    One more thing. Luet wrote:

    My conclusion is that many of the scriptures referring homosexuality were in fact referring to these sexual sins; possibly the writers had no words for this other than homosexuality, or perhaps the original meaning was lost in translation.

    Homosexuality is not even mentioned in any of these passages. The word isn’t in the (KJV) scriptures, at all. The passages are not describing a sexual orientation, but are describing sinful actions. (In fact, sexual orientation, whether heterosexual or homosexual, is not in the scriptures, either, only specific behaviors.) It may be that the description is not accurate, but it may also be that it is accurate. On which side are we to err? On the side that believes the scripture as written or the side that disbelieves it? The JST doesn’t correct any of these passages, but leaves them as is. What does that imply? In other words, just because we don’t like the thought of homosexual behavior and SSM being outlawed, is that justification to blot out these passages? Joseph essentially blotted out the Song of Solomon, but these he left in. The passages describe homosexual relations, not sex rituals. The context may have been sex rituals, assault, rape, etc., but that is not what is being condemned in the passages. Just the act of a man being with a man, as with a woman, which is a very straightforward description. But again, this is neither here nor there since the latter-day revelations (and now “revelatory” English grammar) paint it all as contrary to the law of chastity, even if you blot out these biblical passages.

    Okay, so Justin, I think I have stated my case. But now I’d like to know how you are backing up, scripturally, the following statements:

    It may very well be that the marriage covenant ordained by God was for the purpose of joining two people together in a relationship of fidelity, cooperation, commitment, service, intimacy, fellowship, emotional fulfillment, and companionship — without needing them to be hetero- [or monogamous].

    Are there any scriptures you are basing this lack of need for heterosexuality on? I can’t think of a single passage that allows one to divorce heterosexuality from sex and marriage, but maybe you’ve got something in mind?

  41. LDS Anarchist, from your complaints about gender and pronouns, it’s very clear you are a privileged man. How dare women try to make the Scriptures more personally accessible? You clearly have never been in a position when things weren’t catered to you. Women are people and sometimes you can’t use gender exclusive words, because hey I’m right here, I’m a person, and I need the Scriptures and revelation too, but it all sounds like it’s directed at men and not me. Sorry for putting ‘they’ and ‘sons & daughters’ in my head, apparently. Grammar rules are malleable and change over time, as you may have learned. Language is for the people and conforms to it’s users, not the other way around.

    Your other arguments are sound, I just disagree with them. (Based mostly on my feelings and Scriptural interpretations – I haven’t had crazy amounts of personal revelations as you guys have.)

  42. Okay, so Justin, I think I have stated my case. But now I’d like to know how you are backing up, scripturally, the following statements:

    It may very well be that the marriage covenant ordained by God was for the purpose of joining two people together in a relationship of fidelity, cooperation, commitment, service, intimacy, fellowship, emotional fulfillment, and companionship — without needing them to be hetero- [or monogamous].

    Are there any scriptures you are basing this lack of need for heterosexuality on? I can’t think of a single passage that allows one to divorce heterosexuality from sex and marriage, but maybe you’ve got something in mind?

    I was basing what I wrote on my belief that if the scriptures were written by heterosexual men from patriarchal cultures in a male-privileged language — then we should not be surprised to see that:

    * Marriage is always described in terms of men “taking” a wife
    * Adultery is always described in terms of women breaking the wedlock with their behavior
    * Etc.

    I simply don’t expect the scriptures we have to tell us anything about issues relating to trans-gendered or homosexually-oriented people. That’s like expecting the scriptures to tell us about energy drinks, cell phones, or internet usage.

    So — what I can say for certain that the scriptures say about marriages [in general, gender-inclusively] is that marriage couples should be faithful [“cleave unto none else”], committed [the no divorce teachings of Jesus], intimate [“one flesh”], emotionally fulfilling [“it is not good for adam (“human beings”) to be alone”], cooperative [“we will make a companion and helpmeet for adam“], etc. These adjectives can apply to polygamous families and homosexual families — just as much as they apply to “Adam and Eve” monogamous, heterosexual ones.

    I can admit that the scriptures assume heterosexuality in the same sense that fish assume water. But does that mean only water exists — or that the revelations were given to fish [and not to land animals]? I don’t pretend to have that answer.

    I’ve said that [in my personal theology] methinks that homosexual unions will end at death and not continue on in and after the resurrection. I also think that, in our for-time arrangements, the Lord would be more concerned with people who take advantage of, abused, lie to, and cheat on their partners — than He would be with people who find emotional and sexual fulfillment in a committed, same-gender relationship. I think that what we do with our penis or our orifices [etc.] is irrelevant in a moral sense once it’s compared to how we relate to and treat other people. The law of chastity could just as easily be saying that we ought to have committed sexual ethics [no swinging relationships, no cheating, one-night stands, etc.] as saying we should all be heterosexual.

    And then — given the constraints of thousands of years of male-privilege in society and male-centric focus in human languages — I’d expect we need further light and knowledge from the Lord as to how the clear the way between which one it’s to be [committed sexual ethics — or heterosexuality only, for everyone, all the time].

  43. Justin,

    So — what I can say for certain that the scriptures say about marriages [in general, gender-inclusively] is that marriage couples should be faithful [“cleave unto none else”], committed [the no divorce teachings of Jesus], intimate [“one flesh”], emotionally fulfilling [“it is not good for adam (“human beings”) to be alone”], cooperative [“we will make a companion and helpmeet for adam”], etc. These adjectives can apply to polygamous families and homosexual families — just as much as they apply to “Adam and Eve” monogamous, heterosexual ones.

    Okay, so you are drawing from scriptures, but are taking them out of the context they were given in: [“cleave unto none else”] is divorced from “wife”; [the no divorce teachings of Jesus] is divorced from “wife”; [“one flesh”] is divorced from “man” and “wife”; [“it is not good for adam (“human beings”) to be alone”] is transformed from a singular male man to “human beings”, (for the context of the statement shows that Adam at this point was a singular man and the Lord was referring to only him: “Let us make an help meet for the man, for it is not good that the man should be alone, therefore we will form an help meet for him.”); and [“we will make a companion and helpmeet for adam”] is divorced from its meetness, (in other words, Adam and Eve are the entire gospel pattern, thus what is meet for male Adam–female Eve–is meet for all his sons, and what is meet for female Eve–male Adam–is meet for all her daughters), and transformed into mere companionship.

    Obviously, you are free to hold these beliefs, but because you continue to take everything out of the context in which it was given, I cannot appeal directly to the scriptures on this issue with you. So I will try another approach.

    On the W&T blog I asked you this question:

    Do you view the temple’s defined law of chastity as a condemnation of homosexual behavior?

    So, here is the law of chastity, as given in the temple:

    “We are instructed to give unto you the law of chastity. This I will explain.

    “To the sisters, it is that no one of you will have sexual intercourse except with your husband to whom you are legally and lawfully wedded. To the brethren it is that no one of you will have sexual intercourse except with your wife to whom you are legally and lawfully wedded.”

    Is this wording not crystal clear? How can a legally wed homosexual union not violate this law?

  44. Luet,

    LDS Anarchist, from your complaints about gender and pronouns, it’s very clear you are a privileged man.

    When did I ever complain about gender and pronouns?

  45. The law of chastity is obviously unclear because the language you quoted in not the language you will hear in a temple on any given day. Presently, it’s that the daughters of Eve and the sons of Adam will not have sexual relations except with their husbands or wives to whom they are legally and lawfully wedded. Which certainly does leave room for interpretation as applying to same-gender relationships. While obviously the language you quoted does not have such wiggle-room and would not allow justified same-gender relationships.

    Either way — asking me if I think homosexual behavior [regardless of the healthiness of their relationship] violates the law of chastity when we’re talking about legalizing same-sex marriage licenses in this country is about the same to me as if you’d asked me if I think D&C 89 should affect the sales of liquor, hot drinks, and tobacco — or if I think Leviticus’ verses on capital punishment should affect our legal system.

    As I said — I’m not even trying to argue that God justifies same-gender relationships, but neither would I be willing to say that He condemns any-and-all of them. Same-gender couples should have the legal right to seek a marriage relationship recognition from the state in the same way that heterosexual couples are able to. So then I’d say that means we either legalize marriage licenses for them as they are right now — or downgrade everyone to civil unions.

  46. Also — what you said about me drawing from the scriptures while taking them out of context reminded me of the thoughts on interpreting scriptures that I’d written a couple years ago:

    Scriptural interpretation can be seen as very similar to this constitutional/judicial interpretation. There are different ways to approach the “original intent” question of passages that may seem quite vague when one attempts to apply them to particular circumstances. These mirror to two schools of thought on judicial interpretation:

    Strict textual/contextual interpretation – which would be characterized as “fundamentalist” or “conservative”. Wherein this group focuses on the specific context of the scripture, what the author was addressing in that scripture, what did the words used mean at the time they were written, etc.

    Liken the scriptures to yourself interpretation – which would be characterized as being more “liberal” with interpreting passages. Wherein this group focuses on personal circumstances and concerns, what general concepts did the author outline in that scripture, what do the words used in the translation mean to me or what can I conclude from them personally, etc.

    The former is approaching scriptural intent by focusing on original context and the original conceptions the authors had in mind – the latter is approaching the same goal by focusing on an application of the general concept the authors had in mind to modern issues.

    [Methods of Scriptural Interpretation]

  47. Justin,

    The law of chastity is obviously unclear because the language you quoted in not the language you will hear in a temple on any given day. Presently, it’s that the daughters of Eve and the sons of Adam will not have sexual relations except with their husbands or wives to whom they are legally and lawfully wedded. Which certainly does leave room for interpretation as applying to same-gender relationships. While obviously the language you quoted does not have such wiggle-room and would not allow justified same-gender relationships.

    I’m sure you know where I’m going with all of this. Law of chastity #1 has only one interpretation, with no wiggle room. Law of chastity #2 is worded in a way that allows some wiggle room, if you set aside the rules of English grammar and its implied meaning. If you interpret law of chastity #2 in one way, contrary to its natural, implied meaning, it contradicts law of chastity #1. (In April 1990, legalized SSM did not exist, only heterosexual marriage, therefore daughters of Eve were paired to only husbands and sons of Adam were paired to only wives.) If you interpret law of chastity #2 in another way, in the way it is implied, it equates to law of chastity #1. There has been no stated or implied change to the law of chastity since the changed wording in April 1990, which wording changes were stated as given to shorten and streamline the endowment, therefore, #2 must be equal to #1, giving you only one possible interpretation. This is manifestly obvious and you appear to be dancing around the issue. Don’t you think that making #2 mean something different than #1 has all the trappings of a wrest? From the 1828 dictionary:

    3. To distort; to turn from truth or twist from its natural meaning by violence; to pervert.

    Wrest once the law to your authority.

    Thou shalt not wrest the judgment of the poor. Exodus 23.

    Which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other Scriptures, to their own destruction. 2 Peter 3.

    But I’ll play along. The only way you can interpret #2 different than #1 is if you believe that the law of chastity has either fundamentally changed since April 1990 or that the law of chastity has not changed but had not been fully revealed prior to April 1990 and now we have more light and knowledge from the new wording. Do you believe either of these scenarios?

    The “obviously unclear” law of chastity is an important topic to clear up because you cannot divorce marriage from chastity, or chastity from marriage. The two concepts are intertwined, or a single concept. So, if SSM is chaste, it is marriage. If it is not chaste, it is not marriage. Once you establish where it fits, then you can discuss the ramifications of its legalization and our duty as saints in relation to this issue. Our duty is to promote the truth, dispel errors and uncover lies, so it is important to determine if SSM is truly marriage and not a wicked practice before we start encouraging the state to legalize it. If it is not marriage, but wickedness, then it would not be right for us to promote it. As this is not a civil rights issue, it is entirely appropriate to voice concerns about it. In other words, we do not trample upon anyone’s rights by seeking to prohibit legal recognition of SSM. So, this is not a strictly political matter, but a matter of belief and theology, hence the need to spell this out in plainness.

    Same-gender couples should have the legal right to seek a marriage relationship recognition from the state in the same way that heterosexual couples are able to.

    But they already have this right. They can seek recognition in the same way hetero couples are able to, by marrying someone of the opposite sex. What you meant to say, or should have said, is that you believe that they should be able to seek a marriage relationship recognition from the state in a different way than hetero couples are able to. But there is no basis for saying this. Why should they have the right to do something different under the law? If you are all about marriage equality, then it ought to be in the very same way that heteros marry.

    In conclusion, this all comes down to altering the definition of marriage, not in allowing people to exercise marriage rights. This has nothing, whatsoever, to do with rights.

  48. LDS Anarchist, I may have misinterpreted, as I took the second paragraph of what you quoted this morning as something you wrote because the quote brackets don’t appear when I read the thread on my phone. Nonetheless, since you copy and pasted it, I’ll assume you agree with it. The passage begins as follows: “In the days of political correctness in the late twentieth century, this simple grammatical rule has been attacked as a “sexist” expression. The style manuals of many publications now require all kinds of contortions to avoid favoring the pronoun he or “discriminating” against the pronoun she….” and so on.

    In regards to the Law of Chastity, why do you apply it to one situation you dislike, homosexuality, and not another you approve of: polygamy and tribal relationships? Some more conservative interpretations may say that the Law of Chastity definitely prescribes monogamy. What is your answer to that?

  49. Luet,

    I’m applying the law of chastity across the board. It is not that I dislike homosexuality and like polygamy. I couldn’t care less what two men, two women, a man and a woman, or a group of people do in the privacy of their own homes. As long as everyone is a consenting adult, to each his own. But that is the anarchist in me speaking. The latter-day saint in me is duty bound to uphold the laws of God, whatever they might be. If it were justifiable before God for two men to have sexual relations, I’d say, “Have fun.” If it were justifiable for them to get married to each other, and then they could have sex with each other without breaking the law of chastity, then I’d be the first to encourage them to do that. So, this has nothing to do with my personal preferences. My only concern is the law of God. And because of that, I must discourage everyone from partaking of these wicked practices or promoting them in any way.

    Some more conservative interpretations may say that the Law of Chastity definitely prescribes monogamy. What is your answer to that?

    I believe we addressed that in Chapter 3 of the GEMTAM book. Please read that chapter for a detailed answer.

  50. The only way you can interpret #2 different than #1 is if you believe that the law of chastity has either fundamentally changed since April 1990 or that the law of chastity has not changed but had not been fully revealed prior to April 1990 and now we have more light and knowledge from the new wording. Do you believe either of these scenarios?

    I think there exists a third scenario which would be that the change was made to clarify a gender-inclusive meaning that was already there in the exclusive language of the original — clarifying a meaning that would be more akin to “people should only be sexually active in committed marriage relationships”.

    This line:

    But they already have this right. They can seek recognition in the same way hetero couples are able to, by marrying someone of the opposite sex.

    is completely disingenuous every time it’s used. I’m saying that heterosexuals have the right to marry the person they are attracted to and desire to marry — that’s the right we’re talking about. A right of self-actualization, to find fulfillment sexually and emotionally according to the dictates of their consciences and the desires of their hearts. So it’s not a “different way” to say that same-gender couples have a right to the same marriage license as heterosexual couples — and saying so is being tongue-in-cheek [at best] or else purposefully deflecting.

    We could get Brand Nu on here and ask him about inter-racial marriages. He could go through this exact same line of reasoning — e.g., black people have the same rights to marry that white people do because they are all equally free to marry any other person of their color, why do you want to give them a “different” set of rights than white people by allowing them to marry someone of a different race?

  51. In any event — I don’t want us all to get lost in the weeds of this topic — so let me try a summation because I think that with the two issues being talked about [legally/civilly and religiously] we can easily end up talking past each other and running around in circles, saying nothing. So, summation [for myself]:

    As a matter of the theology of the ordinance of marriage given to humans by God:

    I agree that you cannot divorce marriage from chastity, or chastity from marriage in the gospel. The two concepts are an intertwined, single concept. Justified sexual relations [in God’s sight] are only ones that take place within a marriage relationship where permanence is created. So, yes, if any-and-all same-gender couples fail to meet the law of chastity, then I can admit that their sexual unions could never be justified [in God’s eyes] — even if they lived together and proclaimed themselves as married.

    Personally — my mind’s not made up on whether God condemns or justifies same-gender relationships. It’s a realistic possibility in my mind that He’s concerned about people having committed sexual ethics and healthy, fulfilling companionships — than He is with what genders the parties involved were born with. It may be that He told Paul to tell the Romans/Ephesians about “men lying with men” because of what the men who were lying with men in Rome and Ephesus were doing and why they were doing it. That’s a valid, non-wresting way to interpret the scripture.

    But that may be wrong, I’m not closed-minded about it. It may be that the scriptures only describe marriage in terms of “men taking a wife” and only describe adultery in terms of “women breaking their wedding vows”, etc. because God only thinks about it in those exact gender-specific terms. I could possibly accept that that the wording used has nothing to do with the constraints of thousands of years of male-privilege in society and male-centric focus in human languages.

    I can admit that the scriptures do indeed assume heterosexuality a priori — in the same way that fish would assume water. But does that mean only water exists — or that the revelations were given to fish [and not to land animals]? I don’t pretend to have that answer. But I simply don’t expect the scriptures we currently have to tell us anything explicit on issues related to current trans-gendered or homosexually-oriented people. That’s like expecting the scriptures to tell us about energy drinks, cell phones, or internet usage.

    I also think that, in our for-time arrangements, the Lord would be more concerned with people who take advantage of, abuse, lie to, and cheat on their partners — than He would be with people who find emotional and sexual fulfillment in a committed, same-gender relationship. I’d expect we need further light and knowledge from the Lord as to how the clear the way between which one it’s to be [is it committed sexual ethics — or heterosexuality only, for everyone, all the time].

    As a matter of civil marriage recognition:

    What I believe as an LDS should only affect what I accept in myself and what I vote for or speak for/against in the affairs of civil government. So let’s say that I move from a state of “on the fence” about same-gender relationships [religiously] and I move onto the ground of being for heterosexual marriages only. That still doesn’t make the political issue any different.

    The “civil rights” of the gay marriage debate is that [in the eyes of the state] there should be equality under the law and protection of the rights of minorities from the tyranny of a majority. Human beings have a right to self-actualization, which includes seeking fulfillment in relationships with other people. We’re social animals — intimacy is part of our nature.

    Obviously, as an anarchist, I’d like to see no state-issued benefits given to any couple via a purchased marriage licenses. Let everyone live how they want to live and let that be it’s own reward. But, insofar as we’re going to legally-recognize and [especially] give civil privileges and benefits for committed marriage unions for one class — it is not proper for the state to deny access to that same recognition for another class based on their race, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, skin color, ethnicity, religion, or disability.

    So, in this case — I’ve said that I favor a down-grading of every civil marriage to a “civil union certificate” for purposes of property, children, tax benefits, etc. that a couple is free to get [or not get] however they see fit. And then religious groups are free to solemnize and recognize marriages within their congregations however they see fit [using/recognizing the civil union certificates however they see fit as well].

  52. Same-sex “marriage” is fundamentally different than traditional marriage, so assigning an equal status to it fundamentally changes what marriage is and isn’t.

    Marriage and chastity both deal with reproductive use (procreation) and concern both the rights of parents and the rights of children to be born into, and raised by, a female mother and a male father. SSM severs any connection marriage has to children, making marriage solely (selfishly) about the two individuals, and not about children. In order for a SSM to bear children, artificial insemination, surrogacy or adoption must be resorted to. In the first two options, any children born are denied access to their biological parent and denied the right to be raised by those parents. In the last option, they are denied the right to be raised by a female mother and a male father. Both an atmosphere of maleness (fatherhood) and femaleness (motherhood) is necessary for the ideal raising and development of children.

    The state has a vested interest in marriage because of the children that may come of it. Traditional marriage actually helps the state and society to function and grow properly. It does not matter that some married couples are infertile, the fact is that the vast majority are fertile and the assumption of the law sides with nature. In other words, it is simply assumed that two adults of opposite gender are capable of producing children, regardless of whether that turns out to be true or not. Therefore, traditional marriage is something that the state can get behind. Not so with SSM. With SSM, the assumption must be the opposite: no children can be born of two gay men or two gay women. There’s no vested interest. So, why the push? Simply to downgrade traditional marriage and sever its connection to children. In other words, this is an attempt to destroy the ordinance and the concept of family outright.

    Whether from an LDS standpoint, or an anarchist standpoint, SSM cannot be supported. I’ve already discussed the LDS standpoint at length. From the anarchist standpoint, SSM will increase the power and control of government. The state did not create marriage, it simple inherited it. It does not have power to create a new form of marriage, yet this is exactly what legalized SSM does. And by so doing, and equating it with traditional marriage, it affects the inherited form, granting it power to corrupt it altogether.

    All the anarchists I know are for the abolition of the state, but barring that, its reduction is preferable. I don’t know of any anarchists who are for granting new powers to the state. Yet legalized SSM is exactly that, a new power granted to, or usurped by, the state.

    Marriage isn’t a mere contract, either. It is a status. Did I make a contract with my wife when I married her, written or spoken? No, I didn’t. There is nothing in writing and the only word I spoke when I married her was, “Yes.” The question posed to me was:

    Brother [LDS Anarchist], do you take Sister [LDS Anarchist] by the right hand and receive her unto yourself to be your lawfully wedded wife, for time and all eternity, with a covenant and promise that you will observe and keep all the laws, rites, and ordinances pertaining to this holy order of matrimony in the new and everlasting covenant; and this you do in the presence of God, angels, and these witnesses of your own free will and choice?

    So, when I said “yes” I indicated that I took her as my lawfully wedded wife and covenanted and promised (to God) that I would observe and keep His laws, rites and ordinances. I didn’t agree or covenant or contract to take my wife, I just took and received her as my wife. The covenant or promise I made was to God and pertained to His laws, rites and ordinances.

    So, marriage is not a contract. It is a status. And what status is that? The status of husband and wife, into which union children are to be born and raised.

    SSM fundamentally changes traditional marriage from a status to a mere contract between two genderless people. It completely corrupts the principle.

    So, from an anarchist standpoint, barring the abolition of the state, the only viable option is a civil union, which does not grant new powers to the state.

  53. The words of Mosiah in Mosiah 29 apply to this topic. Although he spoke of what occurs with a wicked king (a monarchy), the principle is applicable to any state, even our democratic republic.

    12 Now it is better that a man should be judged of God than of man, for the judgments of God are always just, but the judgments of man are not always just.

    13 Therefore, if it were possible that you could have just men to [serve in] your [States], who would establish the laws of God, and judge this people according to his commandments, yea, if ye could have men [serve in] your [States] who would do even as my father Benjamin did for this people—I say unto you, if this could always be the case then it would be expedient that ye should always have [States] to rule over you.

    16 Now I say unto you, that because all men are not just it is not expedient that ye should have a [State] or [States] to rule over you.

    17 For behold, how much iniquity doth one wicked [State] cause to be committed, yea, and what great destruction!

    21 And behold, now I say unto you, ye cannot dethrone an iniquitous [State] save it be through much contention, and the shedding of much blood.

    22 For behold, [it] has [its] friends in iniquity, and [it] keepeth [its] guards about [it]; and [it] teareth up the laws of those who have reigned in righteousness before [it]; and [it] trampleth under [its] feet the commandments of God;

    23 And [it] enacteth laws, and sendeth them forth among [its] people, yea, laws after the manner of [its] own wickedness; and whosoever doth not obey [its] laws [it] causeth to be destroyed; and whosoever doth rebel against [it] [it] will send [its] armies against them to war, and if [it] can [it] will destroy them; and thus an unrighteous [State] doth pervert the ways of all righteousness.

    What applies, then, to an iniquitous king also applies to an iniquitous state. If SSM is iniquity and an affront to God, then institutionalizing it in any state causes that particular state to become iniquitous and it will start behaving just like the iniquitous king does. So, it is to be expected, according to this principle, that verses 22 and 23 will begin to happen among the people of such states.

    A wicked state causes iniquity to be committed, just as a wicked king does. Not just in the sense that the state or king commits iniquity, but in the sense that the people of the king or state start committing iniquity because the king or state has, by the corruption of the laws, legalized (institutionalized) and thus legitimized iniquity. So, if SSM becomes widespread among the 50 States of the union, we can expect a rise in iniquitous behavior among the people.

    It doesn’t take long, either, to see the corresponding rise in iniquity among the people. As soon as good government laws are altered or become corrupted, the process is sped up.

    6 And the regulations of the government were destroyed, because of the secret combination of the friends and kindreds of those who murdered the prophets.

    7 And they did cause a great contention in the land, insomuch that the more righteous part of the people had nearly all become wicked; yea, there were but few righteous men among them.

    8 And thus six years had not passed away since the more part of the people had turned from their righteousness, like the dog to his vomit, or like the sow to her wallowing in the mire. (3 Nephi 7))

  54. I stumbled across The Witherspoon Institute web site and found the following articles, which I’m linking here for future reference.

    Why We Should Oppose Same-Sex Marriage by David Novak

    Why Marriage is Inherently Heterosexual by Patrick Lee

    The Institution Formerly Known As Marriage by Jennifer Roback Morse

    Lessons from France on the Myths of Same-Sex Marriage by Robert Oscar Lopez

    Same-Sex Marriage and Religious Freedom, Fundamentally At Odds by Matthew J. Franck

    And many others.

    Btw, Justin, I am glad that you have published this post, regardless of our disagreement on this issue. If anything, it has allowed me to get the thoughts in my head down on (cyber-) paper. I may end up further organizing them into a series of posts about why LDS have a duty to oppose same-sex “marriage”, since I feel that LDS need to have this clearly layed out to their view so they can cut through all the propaganda bull$#it and because supporters of SSM need to be vocally and visually opposed every chance one gets, as a duty we have towards God. There is so very much that legalized SSM marriage will touch and corrupt, that I will probably have to add a lot more to what I have already written in your two posts, to address these other issues. But I thank you for at least getting my mind started on this process.

  55. Some good points brought out in this article, published on March 20th of this year:

    Supreme Court Expected to Decide Whether Constitution Requires States to Legalize Gay Marriage

    In a Tuesday symposium on the cases sponsored by The Heritage Foundation and Alliance Defending Freedom, John C. Eastman, Henry Salvatori professor of law and community service and former dean at Chapman University School of Law, said he does not expect the court to sidestep the controversial issue of gay marriage by deciding the case narrowly on a process issue, such as jurisdiction, as some have argued. Rather, Eastman expects the justices to decide whether or not the Constitution requires states to legalize gay marriage.

    Gay marriage advocates are hoping that the high court will legalize gay marriage in all states by arguing that not allowing same-sex couples to marry would violate either the due process or equal protection clauses of the Constitution. Eastman believes the court should not and will not support that view.

    “I think the court is ultimately going to confront the hard issue – does it violate due process or equal protection to adhere to traditional marriage, or, put another way, does the Constitution render traditional marriage unconstitutional? And I think at the end of the day the court is going to say no to that,” Eastman said.

    Austin Nimocks, an attorney for Alliance Defending Freedom who will serve as co-counsel defending Proposition 8 during oral arguments at the Supreme Court, agreed.

    “Those arguing for same-sex marriage in the Supreme Court are arguing that same-sex marriage is a fundamental right in the U.S. Constitution, which means that it is deeply rooted in our country’s history and traditions,” Nimocks said. “Our argument is very simple – that’s not true.

    “You can’t find in the history of our country and our Constitution a deeply rooted tradition and history of same-sex marriage. Marriage is what it has always been, since the beginning of time. The Supreme Court has acknowledged marriage 14 times in its prior jurisprudence. It has rejected a claim for same-sex marriage already, back in the 70s. And so, in no circumstances can our opponents make the constitutional case that same-sex marriage is a fundamental right in the U.S. Constitution.

    Ryan T. Anderson, Simon Fellow in Religion and a Free Society at The Heritage Foundation and co-author of What Is Marriage? Man and Woman: A Defense, argued that public policy with regard to marriage needs to answer three central questions: What is marriage? Why does marriage matter for public policy? And what are the consequences of redefining marriage?

    “Marriage exists to unite a man and a woman, husband and wife, to be mother and father to any children that union produces. It’s based on the anthropological fact that men and women are different and complementary, the biological fact that it takes a man and a woman to make a child, and the social reality that a child needs a mom and dad,” Anderson said.

    This does not mean, though, that couples who do not want children or who are unable to have children should be denied marriage, Anderson explained.

    “Government is not in the marriage business to regulate citizens’ romantic lives. Government is in the marriage business because, while not every marriage will produce a child, every child has a mother and a father, and marriage is the institution that allows the state the least coercively, least intrusively, to ensure that child has its mother and father committed to each other and to the child,” Anderson said.

    Since most marriages produce children, Anderson also believes that government policy should be directed toward that fact, rather than the few exceptions.

    “When you make public policy, when you make laws,” Anderson said, “you deal with the rule, not the exception to the rule. You deal with wholesale, not retail. So, while it’s true that there are a handful of couples that will never have a child, it still holds up the model of marriage being a man and a woman, and it’s still true that every child that comes into existence has a mother and a father. And promoting marriage is the only way the state can encourage adults to take responsibility for those children.

    Bold emphasis mine.

  56. Btw, Justin, I am glad that you have published this post, regardless of our disagreement on this issue.

    Yes — the disagreement has been fun, and has been informative for me. As I said, since I’m still on the fence about the issue theologically, I’ve gotten a lot out of reading your defense of heterosexual marriages as the ordinance God foreordained people enter into.

  57. This line:

    But they already have this right. They can seek recognition in the same way hetero couples are able to, by marrying someone of the opposite sex.

    is completely disingenuous every time it’s used. I’m saying that heterosexuals have the right to marry the person they are attracted to and desire to marry — that’s the right we’re talking about. A right of self-actualization, to find fulfillment sexually and emotionally according to the dictates of their consciences and the desires of their hearts. So it’s not a “different way” to say that same-gender couples have a right to the same marriage license as heterosexual couples — and saying so is being tongue-in-cheek [at best] or else purposefully deflecting.

    We could get Brand Nu on here and ask him about inter-racial marriages. He could go through this exact same line of reasoning — e.g., black people have the same rights to marry that white people do because they are all equally free to marry any other person of their color, why do you want to give them a “different” set of rights than white people by allowing them to marry someone of a different race?

    To quote someone else:

    Some supporters of redefining marriage appeal to the civil rights movement and interracial marriage. They argue that laws defining marriage as a union of a man and a woman are unjust because that they fail to treat people equally—exactly like laws that prevented interracial marriage. Yet such appeals beg the question of what is essential to marriage. They assume that gender is as irrelevant as race in making policy about marriage.

    But the relevance of gender to marriage is the exact question we need to debate, not preemptively discard without discussion as advocates of redefinition seem to do.

    Marriage must be color-blind, but it cannot be gender-blind. The color of two people’s skin has nothing to do with marriage. But the sexual difference between a man and a woman is central to what marriage is. Men and women regardless of their race can unite in marriage, and children regardless of their race need moms and dads. To acknowledge such facts requires an understanding of what, at an essential level, makes a marriage.

    By contrast, race has nothing to do with marriage, and racist laws kept the races apart—and that is a bad thing. Marriage unites the two halves of humanity—male and female—and that is a good thing.

    Also from the same author:

    At a reception last week for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Pride Month, President Obama reiterated his support for the redefinition of marriage, claiming inspiration from the Declaration of Independence:

    And it’s something that can be traced back to our Declaration of Independence—the fundamental principle that all of us are created equal. And as I said in my Inaugural Address, if we truly are created equal, then surely the love we commit to one another must be equal as well.

    “The love we commit to one another,” as such, is none of the government’s business. The government isn’t in the business of affirming our loves. Rather, it leaves consenting adults free to live and love as they choose.

    And consenting adults are free to do so. Contrary to what some say, there is no ban on same-sex relationships. Nothing about them is illegal. In all 50 states, two people of the same sex may choose to live together, choose to join a religious community that blesses their relationship, and choose a workplace offering joint benefits.

    What’s at issue is whether the Supreme Court will redefine marriage—and then force every citizen, religious institution, and business to treat same-sex relationships as if they are marriages. At issue is whether the government will trample the real civil rights of Americans (such as religious liberty) as it coerces and compels them to recognize and affirm same-sex relationships as marriages.

    Equality demands that we treat in the same ways things that are the same. But a same-sex relationship is fundamentally different from a marriage. No same-sex union can produce a child. And no same-sex relationship can provide a child with a mother and a father.

  58. How does the essentialness of gender complementarity described here:

    but from the beginning of the creation
    god made them male and female

    et al.

    or this:

    it appears that marriage is all about re-creating the image and functionality of God. Although the scripture says “one flesh,” I wonder if in that brief moment of physical connection, the spirit appendages of man and woman also connect, or merge into oneness. The whole thing appears patterned after the body of God, which is Father, Son and Holy Ghost with the same Spirit part in communion, thus they being “one God.”

    I wonder if–on a spirit body level–the spirit of man and woman, meaning the spherical part, is as complementary as the physical bodies that we can currently observe. I mean, just as a man and a woman physically “fit together” like a glove in intercourse, I wonder if a man’s spiritual sphere part and a woman’s spiritual sphere part also are designed with complementarity, “fitting together” on a spiritual plane.
    […]
    Also, another thing about unification of the spirit sphere. It may be a question of vortical spin or rotational direction. The male spirit sphere, having polar vortices which, perhaps rotate in one direction, say clock-wise and outward, and the female spirit sphere having polar vortices that rotate in the opposite direction, counter-clockwise and inward. When brought in close proximity, a male and female spirit sphere may naturally gravitate together and unify, such as how two magnets’ opposite poles stick together when brought close, becoming a single magnet. The spirit spheres of two females, or two males, though, may, also like magnets, repel each other, since like poles repel when brought in close proximity. So, no unification can be possible.

    Unlike a light plug being inserted into a socket, which achieves connection just with insertion, there may be a resonant aspect that is required for human connection. In other words, for the spirits to connect, both movement and pleasure must be present, which creates a resonance in the spirit spheres, allowing the two spheres to settle into each other. Thus, no connection can be achieved without the required movement, nor without the required pleasure. The pleasure, then, is not the end of sex, but what causes the two spheres to become one. In other words, this is what sexual pleasure is designed by God for, to connect the spheres.

    work with this from Galatians 3:

    there is neither Jew nor Greek
    there is neither bond nor free
    there is neither male nor female
    for you are all one in messiah Yahshua

  59. My understanding is that Paul was not speaking of all humanity, but of only the saints, who had taken upon them the name of Christ, witnessed by their baptism. Here is the entire concept that he wrote:

    for ye are all the children of god by faith in christ jesus
    for as many of you
    as have been baptized into christ
    have put on christ
    there is neither jew nor greek
    there is neither bond nor free
    there is neither male nor female
    for ye are all one in christ jesus
    and if ye be christ’s
    then are ye abraham’s seed
    and heirs according to the promise
    now
    i say
    that the heir
    as long as he is a child
    differeth nothing from a servant
    though he be lord of all
    but is under tutors and governors until the time appointed of the father
    even so we
    when we were children
    were in bondage under the elements of the world
    but when the fulness of the time was come
    god sent forth his son
    made of a woman
    made under the law
    to redeem them
    that were under the law
    that we might receive the adoption of sons
    and because ye are sons
    god hath sent forth the spirit of his son into your hearts
    crying

    abba
    father

    wherefore thou art no more a servant
    but a son
    and if a son
    then an heir of god through christ

    As such, they (and we) are proxies for Christ, as long as the Spirit dwells in our hearts, making us like Him, perpetually sanctified, purified and justified. Having received the Spirit, we are adopted into a new heritage, not of this world, just as He and His kingdom is not of this world. So, what pertains to this world for the saints, is swallowed up in this inheritance, and the former differences and distinctions are made new, into a new creature, not called male or female, nor gods and goddesses, but just gods. In other words, although a man and a woman, when they come together, make the image of God, this image, unless worked upon by the Spirit through faith and the other principles and ordinances of the gospel, do not create God, or do not procreate God, in other words, do not continue His seed. It’s like what the Lord said to Joseph in his First Vision, they have a form of godliness but deny the power thereof. Matrimony is only a part of the gospel. It allows us to make the image of God, but then, using the other principles of the gospel that image is made real, so that we became gods, or become one with God.

    I once wrote:

    God (and all other exalted beings) encompasses the one and the all at the same time. So, He represents infinite individuality, which to us looks like sameness. We, on the other hand, express only extremely limited individuality. His goal, then, is to expand us and bring us to His level of individuality, which requires us to be in learning mode and not teaching mode, until we get to His level. At that point, we get to express the infinite and truly understand the joy of the Gods.

    The distinctions we use of female and male, Greek and Jew, bond and free, are only given to us that we may understand things and begin to learn to comprehend the things of God. Because of our finite nature, we need such distinctions as learning tools, providing contrast, but to the Supreme Being, whose name we take upon us, it’s all the same stuff, namely Himself.

    and now
    behold
    i say unto you
    never at any time have i declared from mine own mouth
    that they should return
    for where i am
    they cannot come
    for they have no power
    but remember
    that all my judgments are not given unto men
    and as the words have gone forth out of my mouth
    even so shall they be fulfilled
    that the first shall be last
    and that the last shall be first
    in all things whatsoever i have created by the word of my power
    which is the power of my spirit
    for by the power of my spirit created i them
    yea
    all things
    both spiritual and temporal
    first spiritual
    secondly temporal
    which is the beginning of my work
    and again
    first temporal
    and secondly spiritual
    which is the last of my work
    speaking unto you
    that you may naturally understand
    but unto myself my works have no end
    neither beginning
    but it is given unto you
    that ye may understand
    because ye have asked it of me
    and are agreed
    wherefore
    verily
    i say unto you
    that all things unto me are spiritual
    and not at any time have I given unto you a law
    which was temporal
    neither any man
    nor the children of men
    neither adam your father
    whom i created

    So, Paul was giving the perspective of the Lord, which perspective we will eventually adopt, as we become more like Him. In other words, is God bond or free? Is He Jew or Greek? Is He male or female? He is all of that and more. He encompasses everything, it all being Him. Thus, by exercising faith and receiving the Spirit, we can become one with Him and obtain this same perspective in which distinct things are the same and same things are distinct.

    To obtain this state we must become one flesh and also become one with the Lord. This doesn’t mean that we will lose our distinctiveness or individuality or sex, though. It just means that we will be created new, so that we may experience everything. If my wife, being female, knows exactly all things that pertains to a male existence and I, being male, know all things that pertain to a female existence, and we have this knowledge subjectively, although we are a male and female our maleness or femaleness poses no limitations, whatsoever. Currently, all that we know and see, in their distinctiveness, have, due to that distinction, limitations by which they cannot subjectively know anything else around them. All knowledge outside of ourselves is objective. But God’s knowledge is subjective, which makes the normal distinctions we use here on Earth unnecessary. Thus, all is spiritual to His subjective Self, but to us, until we reach that level of understanding, we must rely upon objective knowledge.

    So, the division God made at the beginning, the opposition in all things, even in the sexes, is necessary for us in our progression towards becoming like Him. As we become one, in flesh and Spirit, according to His commanded patterns, it enables and empowers us to reform ourselves into Him, becoming His literal seed. Thus, there was neither male nor female (prior to Creation), then there was male and female (the Creation), then there will be neither male and female (becoming one in the New Creation, or new creature), while still being male and female. In other words, the final state of maleness and femaleness will be the intended state God had in mind when He first made the distinction or opposition at the beginning. But from our perspective, that ain’t male or female, at least not the kind we experience here on this earth, which comes with limitations.

  60. Here’s another scripture illustrating this point that God subjectively knows all things.

    and he will take upon him death
    that he may loose the bands of death
    which bind his people
    and he will take upon him their infirmities
    that his bowels may be filled with mercy
    according to the flesh
    that he may know
    according to the flesh
    how to succor his people
    according to their infirmities
    now
    the spirit knoweth all things
    nevertheless
    the son of god suffereth according to the flesh
    that he might take upon him the sins of his people
    that he might blot out their transgressions
    according to the power of his deliverance
    and now
    behold
    this is the testimony
    which is in me

    So even though He was to do these things according to the flesh, the anthropomorphic part of Him undergoing these things in the flesh, that He might know according to the flesh how to succor His people according to their infirmities, He already knew these things according to the flesh, because the Spirit already knows all things according to the flesh. He is already, even before coming to Earth,

    he that ascended up on high
    as also he descended below all things
    in that he comprehended all things
    that he might be in all and through all things
    the light of truth

    That is an entirely subjective perspective. (So subjective, in fact, that it is impossible to look at anything objectively. But He has power to do that, too.) So, saying, “I am male and you are female and we are separate and distinct” doesn’t work at certain subjective levels. At those levels, it’s more appropriate to say, “I am in you and you are in me.” Thus, we get scriptures like this:

    and now
    father
    i pray unto thee for them
    and also for all those
    who shall believe on their words
    that they may believe in me
    that i may be in them
    as thou father art in me
    that we may be one

    Etc. (Some think that becoming one with God means that your entire identity goes away, like merging with the Borg of Star Trek. Others think that becoming one with God simply means becoming a god, becoming like Him, still separate and distinct, but possessing the same qualities and perfections as Him, such as how I’ve heard other Mormons describe God’s oneness, in terms of power and purpose, but not in literally sharing the same being or personage. But I’ve covered this stuff already, so I’ll just leave it alone.)

  61. pedophilia may literally mean “love for children” (i still have to google yet, lol).pedophilia or pederasty in my opinion are the same. i believe that pederasty in its ideal form was accepted in ancient times. i think someone couldn’t ordinarily include it in the bunch of rape, sexual assaults, child abuse or other sexual crimes. the term pedophilia perhaps was corrupted in our modern day connotation for having pedophiles who rape or sexually abuse little boys and also because of western standard for legal age allowance

  62. As you mentioned pederasty, this part of the transcript of the Regina v. (Oscar) Wilde trial came to mind:

    Charles Gill (prosecuting): What is “the love that dare not speak its name”?

    Wilde: “The love that dare not speak its name” in this century is such a great affection of an elder for a younger man as there was between David and Jonathan, such as Plato made the very basis of his philosophy, and such as you find in the sonnets of Michelangelo and Shakespeare. It is that deep spiritual affection that is as pure as it is perfect. It dictates and pervades great works of art, like those of Shakespeare and Michelangelo, and those two letters of mine, such as they are. It is in this century misunderstood, so much misunderstood that it may be described as “the love that dare not speak its name,” and on that account of it I am placed where I am now. It is beautiful, it is fine, it is the noblest form of affection. There is nothing unnatural about it. It is intellectual, and it repeatedly exists between an older and a younger man, when the older man has intellect, and the younger man has all the joy, hope and glamour of life before him. That it should be so, the world does not understand. The world mocks at it, and sometimes puts one in the pillory for it.

  63. Wilde’s right — there certainly was a long tradition among the “intellectual” men or artists in centuries past to be sexual with younger “apprentice” boys. And I wouldn’t want any one to think I agree with Wilde as a spokesman for what I was saying about gay marriage.

    It was what Stephen Fry was saying about Wilde that I thought made the good point — which is that while people like Wilde were aware of their sexual inclinations [in terms of being attracted to the same gender] — it was still before “homosexual” became a noun that people were as a permanent orientation and lifestyle — in a open and healthy way.

  64. The first known use of the word “homosexual” was in 1892. The adjective means:

    1 : of, relating to, or characterized by a tendency to direct sexual desire toward another of the same sex

    2 : of, relating to, or involving sexual intercourse between persons of the same sex

    The noun means:

    : a homosexual person and especially a male

    That’s from the current, online, Merriam-Webster’s collegiate dictionary. From the 1910 unabridged Webster’s, it lists “homosexuality” as a medical term:

    Med. Morbid sexual passion for one of the same sex.

    And it has “homosexual” as an adjective describing that condition. Wilde’s trial began in 1895, so Fry is wrong on that point. That word did exist in the English language at that point in time. But it was a medical term, describing not the actions of a person, but their inclination towards the same sex. In other words, the orientation of a person. Wilde had received no such medical diagnosis for that condition, so he couldn’t be classified as such.

    However, there was another word that was used to describe the practice of homosexual relations, and that was sodomite, which means “one who practices sodomy.” That word has been in existence since the 14th century and it was that word that caused Wilde to go to trial, since someone publicly called him a sodomite (and he was) and he sued the man who made the accusation for libel, claiming his innocence. When a ton of evidence came out during the trial against him, he dropped the charges of libel, but then was sued himself for sodomy and gross indecency and lost the case, serving two years of hard labor as his punishment, which ultimately broke him and led to his death. I suppose had Wilde been diagnosed by a medical professional as homosexual, he might have had a better case, claiming that his medical condition was to blame for his behavior.

    The man-made law isn’t so much concerned with what one’s orientation is, so much as what one’s practices are. The law of God, though, goes a bit further, including both actions and desires as proscriptions.

  65. LDSA — do you consider homosexual relationships to be the same as masturbation, adultery, and non-martial sex — when it comes to how God views them?

  66. I wrote on that chastity post,

    Where fornication and adultery fit in the law of chastity

    For the sins of fornication and adultery, only the first definition of sexual intercourse applies. In other words, if a married woman has oral sex with some guy she’s not married to, she is breaking the law of chastity, but she isn’t committing the sin of adultery. If she has a lesbian affair, she is breaking the law of chastity, but she isn’t committing adultery. The sins of fornication and adultery require vaginal penetration by the penis. But, don’t take my word on this. Go ask your bishop to see the church handbook for yourself.

    Now that we know what the law of chastity is, let’s talk about what it isn’t.

    Masturbation does not break the law of chastity

    To break the law of chastity, at least two people are required. Therefore, masturbation, which is sexual self-stimulation, does not break the law of chastity.

    And dyc4557 wrote in a comment on that post:

    And as for masturbation it doesn’t break the law of chastity but it does violate the law of the gospel which says we are to refrain from all unholy and impure practices.

    So, masturbation falls into a different class than homosexual relations, fornication and adultery, which involve more that one person.

    These latter sins are of greater concern than masturbation because they involve corruption of another person. In other words, it is impossible for two people to commit sin together unless they are in agreement to commit the sin, which means one of them must approach the other with the idea of committing sin together. That’s corruption, or the sin of corrupting another individual, or doing the devil’s work of tempting another to commit sin. (Masturbation also corrupts, but only the single individual that practices it.)

    Anyway, all of these practices are “not good, neither meet in the sight of [our] Father.” But if I had to order them according to their seriousness, I’d list adultery as the most wicked and masturbation as the least.

    Homosexual behavior and fornication have aspects that make them exceedingly wicked, and it would be hard to say which sin is worse. Homosexual behavior entirely corrupts the two individuals, from top to bottom, turning all sense of right and wrongness on its head. Because of this, it is more wicked than fornication. But fornication plays with the procreative power, bringing potential unborn children into the mix. In other words, its corrupting influence can extend to innocent children. That makes it exceedingly wicked, more so than homosexuality, which has no power to endanger unborn children. But homosexual behavior, in a sense, frustrates the designs of God of bringing spirits down, whereas fornication, although not in the prescribed pattern, does not put a stop to this work of spirits being born. So, there are different cons to each sin. Personally, I’m not sure which is worse in the sight of God. If I had to guess, I’d say that homosexual behavior is worse than fornication, because of its tendency to more fully corrupt the two individuals.

  67. what
    therefore
    god hath joined together
    let not man put asunder

    What about the legality of civil divorces for civil marriages?

    Those are clearly not God’s pattern for marriage [for those who have been married to permanently separate] to the same degree that you’ve said that same-gender unions do not fit God’s pattern — yet it’s kept as a civil right/privilege for people to have, to dissolve a marriage as freely as we let people create one.

    Now — is that allowance by the State [that of civil divorces] not really a “real” divorce but is actually a “fake” divorce — because His ordinance is that once two are joined then no human can/should divide them again?

    Should people who believe in the word of God be as concerned with civil divorces as they ought to be for civil marriages for same-gender couples?

  68. yet it’s kept as a civil right/privilege for people to have, to dissolve a marriage as freely as we let people create one.

    I would say that civil divorce is a privilege, not a civil right, since there have always been differing regulations on the circumstances in which a divorce can be granted. Of course, nowadays, the regulations are a bit more lax than in former times. As far as the dissolution of a marriage is concerned, on the Wheat & Tares blog, published today, hawkgrrrl wrote:

    The history of alimony is inextricably linked to the history of divorce. Originally, alimony was awarded because while a wife could be “put away,” the marriage (which was ordained of God) could not be dissolved.

    The permanency of marriage is not peculiar to that ordinance alone, but applies to all the ordinances of God, such as baptism, confirmation, etc. Nevertheless, because of our agency we have a right to remove our names from the church records, which breaks the everlasting covenant, and God recognizes that, as sin. In like manner, a divorce is recognized by God as sin, unless it conforms to one of the three provisions found in the word of God.

    The Savior doesn’t say that man cannot put asunder what God hath joined together, but that we are not to let man do that. This can be applied personally, as a commandment that we, ourselves, should not divorce, and also generally, as a commandment to use our influence to constrain the state from granting divorces outside of the three scriptural provisions.

    Should people who believe in the word of God be as concerned with civil divorces as they ought to be for civil marriages for same-gender couples?

    Not really. Although divorce is a sin (unless it has a provision in God’s law), the sin is upon the two requesting the divorce. No state, that I know of, goes around divorcing people who don’t want to be divorced. So, this is a matter of the agency of the two being respected, akin to someone asking for his name to be removed from the church. The church is not at fault for granting the request. Also, of the three legal provisions (uncleanness, fornication and adultery), two are crystal clear and one is not, leaving it largely open to interpretation. As the state is more or less based upon Mosaic law and not the law of Christ, this gives it some wiggle room as to when it can grant a divorce. In other words, although we are to strive to conform the laws of the state to the law of Christ (fornication and adultery), if it does not conform to it, but to the law of Moses (uncleanness), granting divorces in a more liberal manner, this doesn’t condemn the state.

    This makes all state, ecclesiastical or couple divorces real, or recognized by God as valid, (for time, at least.) There is, then, no such thing as a fake divorce, unless two people go around pretending to be divorced when they are really not.

    In the LDS Church, there hasn’t been a whole lot of theological discussion of divorce compared to, say, the Catholic Church:

    DIVORCE: What is the teaching of the Holy Roman Catholic Church?

    Divorce (in Moral Theology)

    Divorce (in Civil Jurisprudence)

    I’m not sure that a Mormon could write with more detail and thoroughness than the above linked Catholic articles, but even here Mormon theology might throw some additional light on the topic.

  69. If we’re going to base what we should/shouldn’t support in the State’s marriage-recognition system on what the scriptures describe as God’s foreordained pattern for marriage as a religious ordinance — then I don’t think you can quote Jesus:

    from the beginning of the creation
    god made humans male and female
    for this cause
    shall a man leave his father and mother
    and cleave to his wife
    and they
    twain
    shall be one flesh
    so then they are no more twain
    but one flesh

    to say that God’s pattern is clearly men joining with women — and leave out the stuff before and after that quote:

    and the Pharisees came to him
    and asked him

    is it lawful for a man
    to put away his wife?

    tempting him
    and he answered
    and said unto them

    what did Moses command you?

    and they said

    Moses allowed for writing a bill of divorcement
    and to put her away

    and Jesus answered
    and said unto them

    for the hardness of your heart
    he wrote you this precept
    but

    […]

    what
    therefore
    god hath joined together
    let not man put asunder.

    So I don’t see why having marriage be gender-blind in the eyes of the State should carry more weight/concern for those who believe in the word of God than having divorce be restriction-less in the eyes of State. If marriage should be gender-specific because of what Jesus said about man+woman/husband+wife — then divorce should only be for adultery, etc. because of what Jesus said about that.

    No state, that I know of, goes around divorcing people who don’t want to be divorced.

    No state, that I know of, goes around marrying people who don’t want to be married either. So that’s not the equivalent case.

    The state withholds marriage licenses from same-gender couples who desire to be married — so the equivalent case would be withholding divorce from a couple who desires to be divorced for a reason that pertains to their race, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, color, ethnicity, religion, or disability.

    The Savior doesn’t say that man cannot put asunder what God hath joined together, but that we are not to let man do that.

    Likewise — you could argue that the Savior doesn’t say that same-gender couples cannot be joined in marriage — but that we are not to let people do that — or that we [personally] shouldn’t marry someone of the same gender. Which pretty much seems to be what you’ve been saying — i.e., that Christians/LDS/etc. have a right/duty to obey the word of God for themselves, and to vote for and speak out in favor of civil marriage laws that match their religious laws.

    But I don’t get why you don’t put Jesus’ divorce provisions on the same level of “concern” that we’re supposed to have for Jesus’ gender-coupling provisions.

    As the state is more or less based upon Mosaic law and not the law of Christ, this gives it some wiggle room as to when it can grant a divorce.

    As you said on the W&T comments: “I ain’t no Christian” — so to I’ll say, “I ain’t no Jew.” I don’t think that anyone will agree that our state is based on the Law of Moses. So I fail to see how anything pertaining to the Old Testament gives any wiggle-room for anything relating to our country’s divorce laws.

    Our state is based on the US Constitution, which while it’s admittedly theistic, I don’t think you can say it’s Mosaic. For example, it doesn’t have lex talionis, it doesn’t discuss marriage, or provisions for the poor, etc. — which is in the Law of Moses.

    This makes all state, ecclesiastical or couple divorces real, or recognized by God as valid, (for time, at least.) There is, then, no such thing as a fake divorce, unless two people go around pretending to be divorced when they are really not.

    Again — let’s substitute ignoring God’s definition for what reasons couples can get divorced with ignoring God’s definition for what genders can get married:

    “This makes all state, ecclesiastical, or couple marriages real, or recognized by God as valid (for time, at least). There is, then, no such thing as a fake marriage, unless two people go around pretending to be married when they are really not.”

    You still lose me when you say that although we are to strive to conform the laws of the state [pertaining to divorce] to the law of Christ — but it’s OK if we can “fall back” on the more liberal law of Moses if we can’t get the state to enact the law of Christ?

    No one is made right with God [justified] through the law of Moses — correct? So how does the state avoid condemnation for ignoring the law of Christ with respect to divorce — but will come under God’s condemnation if its marriage licensing policies ignore the law of Christ [with respect to same-gender couples]? Why one but not the other? It’s the law of Christ, or condemnation — is it not?

  70. Okay, let’s be clear. I’m not saying the laws of the state are the laws of Moses. The laws given to Moses were (more or less) according to the principle, “an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth.” The law of Christ could be summarized with the principle, “turn the other cheek.” Mosaic laws are based upon justice. Christ’s laws appeal to mercy. The state laws are based upon justice and punishments, not dispensing mercy and forgiveness to offenders who repent. So, in this sense, they are “more or less based upon Mosaic law.”

    The state has power to grant a divorce to marriages it authorizes, just as the Church has power to grant a temple cancellation of a temple sealing it authorizes. This power is derived from the agency of the two individuals. Just as the Church does not sin by removing a name from its records by request, or by granting a cancellation of sealing by request, so the state remains free from condemnation by granting a requested divorce.

    But authorizing same gender “marriage” goes beyond the authorization granted to anyone. In other words, no one has agency to legitimately change an ordinance of God. Doing so brings condemnation upon the individuals, churches or states that participate.

    Although restricting divorce to only the provisions provided by Jesus is what we should encourage and strive to have the man-made laws conform to, if the state allows divorce for other reasons, it doesn’t bring the state under condemnation. People freely enter into marriage and baptism, and they are free to back out of it, too. This is according to the principle of justice. The state has power and a right to regulate what marriages it will recognize and authorize, and what divorces, too, but it doesn’t have a right to corrupt marriage and turn it into something altogether different.

    We can differentiate between the two state acts: granting divorces and granting SSM, by saying that the former are the works of men (because of their hardness of their hearts) and the latter is the work of the devil.

    Now, if we look to current church practices concerning temple divorces (cancellation of sealings), we see that the church authorizes cancellation of sealings for more than just fornication and adultery. If we equate SSM with divorce, as you are doing, this brings the church under condemnation for doing the work of the devil. But the two are not equal, for just as God allowed two married people living in the time of Moses to get a divorce because their hearts were hardened towards each other, so He allows two married people living in these times to get a divorce for the same reason. In other words, Moses did not sin by making such allowances. The sin was upon the individuals desirous of divorce. In like manner, neither does the church (or state) sin in granting divorce.

    SSM is a fundamentally different topic than divorce, for there is no provision given anywhere to alter the ordinance of marriage. Whereas divorce has both historical and scriptural precedent, SSM has no scriptural precedent, whatsoever.

    Again, on the one hand is changing an ordinance of God, such as converting baptism by immersion into sprinkling, or baptizing infants, and on the other hand is the power to back out of an ordinance after participating. Both are sins but one sin is layed on the shoulders of both the administrant and the one administered to, while the other sin is layed on only the one being administered to. Any individual, church, group or state (the administrant) that changes an ordinance of God is cursed or comes under condemnation, but if the person or persons who receive the ordinance (those administered to) back out and request to be removed, the administrator is held guiltless and just the person or persons administered to are condemned or lose their reward.

    So, SSM is of greater concern than divorce because everyone who touches it is condemned, both administrants and those who receive the administration.

    No state, that I know of, goes around divorcing people who don’t want to be divorced.

    No state, that I know of, goes around marrying people who don’t want to be married either. So that’s not the equivalent case.

    The point I was trying to make with that statement was that whereas the state is condemned by authorizing SSM, no such condemnation exist with divorce decrees, unless the state forcibly divorces two people against their will, which no state I’m aware of does. At any rate, legalized SSM will end up forcing businesses to do things the owners do not feel right doing, because of their religious beliefs. It may end up having other evil consequences, as well, because the state will begin forcing its acceptance among the populace, as well as promoting it in education, etc. So, although technically you are right that the state doesn’t force people to be married, it will end up forcing people to accept the validity of SSM, or face legal consequences.

    But I don’t get why you don’t put Jesus’ divorce provisions on the same level of “concern” that we’re supposed to have for Jesus’ gender-coupling provisions.

    Because altering the gender-coupling provisions brings the state under condemnation, whereas the state being more liberal in granting divorce remains guiltless. The one institutionalizes iniquity, creating illegitimate authority, doing the works of the devil, the other merely creates a man-made law based on people’s agency and legitimate authority. Both are of concern, but one is of greater concern because its corrupting influence has a potentially wider sphere of influence.

    I don’t think that anyone will agree that our state is based on the Law of Moses. So I fail to see how anything pertaining to the Old Testament gives any wiggle-room for anything relating to our country’s divorce laws.

    I’m beginning to feel like I’m in a conversation with Andrew… See the first paragraph of this comment for an explanation of what I mean by being more or less based on the law of Moses. Re: the Old Testament and our country’s divorce laws, like marriage, divorce was not invented by the state, but was inherited by it. Looking backwards in time, we see divorce in all previous countries. It was at one time a religious thing, like marriage, and since it was given through Moses, by God, it is an ordinance (foreordained in heaven), with necessary elements to make it legitimate: wife is “put away” and there’s a writ of divorcement.

    Was the divorce ordinance fulfilled when Jesus came? Not really. The same provision for divorce existed for both times. In the time of Moses, it was justifiable for “some uncleanness” (which can be interpreted as having to do with breaking the law of chastity) and in the time of Christ, it was justifiable for “fornication” (which can be interpreted as the Savior clarifying what Moses wrote.) Christ did not fulfill Moses’ law of divorce. He re-affirmed it and added to it, by saying that those who put away their wives and marry again commit adultery, and those wives who are put away and marry again, commit adultery. The Gentile revelation on marriage found in section 132 adds even more to that, saying that if a woman is with another man, other than her first husband, she commits adultery, completely eliminating the requirement of “putting away.”

    You still lose me when you say that although we are to strive to conform the laws of the state [pertaining to divorce] to the law of Christ — but it’s OK if we can “fall back” on the more liberal law of Moses if we can’t get the state to enact the law of Christ?

    I could have sworn I had this conversation already with you or someone else, about the difference between the law of Moses and the law of Christ, but what the hell, I’ll say it again. The law of Moses is the law of Christ, for Christ is the one that gave the law of Moses. As such, the law of Moses is a just law. There’s nothing evil about it, it wasn’t inspired of the devil and it wasn’t man-made. The law given to Moses had an end in Christ because of expediency, not because it was a bad law.

    And now ye have said that salvation cometh by the law of Moses. I say unto you that it is expedient that ye should keep the law of Moses as yet; but I say unto you, that the time shall come when it shall no more be expedient to keep the law of Moses.

    Nevertheless, not all aspects of the law of Moses were to be done entirely away. This is why the Ten Commandments are still in effect. These commandments were part of the law of Moses, yet were re-affirmed by Christ. Other principles found in the Mosaic law likewise apply or are re-affirmed.

    So, looking to the law of Moses for guidance in principles of justice is not an unwise practice, since it was a divine law.

    No one is made right with God [justified] through the law of Moses — correct? So how does the state avoid condemnation for ignoring the law of Christ with respect to divorce — but will come under God’s condemnation if its marriage licensing policies ignore the law of Christ [with respect to same-gender couples]? Why one but not the other? It’s the law of Christ, or condemnation — is it not?

    No one is made right with God through the law of Christ, either. Justification comes only of faith, whether before or after the times of Moses and Christ. The laws given by Christ during His ministry are not inherently more righteous than that given to Moses. For can righteous Christ give a law that isn’t righteous? The words used to describe the law of Christ are, “more excellent way.” More excellent than what? Than the law of Moses, meaning that the law of Moses was also “excellent.” So, we can say that one is excellent and the other more excellent, but their righteousness, or rightness before the Lord, is the same, for they were all expedient in their times. Excellence refers to a superior way of doing things, but it is only helpful if it is expedient, according to the conditions among men. If men are not ready for it, and you give it to them, and they self-destruct, that ain’t the best way for that time. But if you give them what was given to Moses, a “less excellent way,” and they progress or at least don’t self-destruct, then that shows that “good, better and best” depends upon the circumstances.

    Now, for us Gentiles, and our State, the laws of which are not based strictly upon the law of Christ, but on the principle of justice that came from Moses, what is expedient for us may not be the same as what was expedient for the ancients. Nevertheless, this doesn’t mean that we set aside the law of Moses or any of the other scriptures, for we are to liken them all to us, depending upon what is expedient for our conditions. We are free to draw guiding principles from all the laws of God, given to prophets of various dispensations, with a special emphasis on the words that Christ Himself gave to the Jews when He was in Jerusalem and to the Nephites when He was in Bountiful, and also the words He gave to the Gentiles through Joseph Smith.

    For us, personally, we are to conform our lives to the Lord’s “more excellent” words. With respect to the State, we are to seek to have it conform, also, to those words, but if we can’t get it to move towards the “more excellent way” then it is expedient that we push it towards the principles given of God in other dispensations, which are also excellent. Whatever law of God the people are willing to receive, let them receive it as their law. In this way, we demonstrate our allegiance and duty to God and His laws.

    So, to conclude another insanely long comment, SSM contradicts all the marriage laws of God, given of whatever dispensation. There is no evidence that it is ordained of God. Divorce, on the other hand, is ordained of God and has an expedient place in society.

    All that said, however, I think the State ought to get out of the divorce business, too, which is as much a racket as is their marriage business.

  71. Btw, I recommend reading the following Wikipedia entry

    An eye for an eye

    especially the Abrahamic traditions part. Here is a quote from that entry that was my point, with bold emphasis all mine:

    The Oral Law explains, based upon the biblical verses, that the Bible mandates a sophisticated five-part monetary form of compensation, consisting of payment for “Damages, Pain, Medical Expenses, Incapacitation, and Mental Anguish” — which underlies many modern legal codes.

    including our own. I’d quote more from the entry, but it is short enough to just click and read.

  72. The state has power to grant a divorce to marriages it authorizes, just as the Church has power to grant a temple cancellation of a temple sealing it authorizes. This power is derived from the agency of the two individuals. Just as the Church does not sin by removing a name from its records by request, or by granting a cancellation of sealing by request, so the state remains free from condemnation by granting a requested divorce.

    But authorizing same gender “marriage” goes beyond the authorization granted to anyone. In other words, no one has agency to legitimately change an ordinance of God. Doing so brings condemnation upon the individuals, churches or states that participate.

    But if marriage is an ordinance of God, then so is divorce. If He has foreordained parameters for legitimate marriages and revealed those to mankind, then so to has He done with legitimate divorces.

    Authorizing marriage-seperations for reasons other than those God has given sounds just as much of a “changing of the ordinance” as authorizing marriage-connections for genders He didn’t authorize to marry.

    Jesus says that if a couple separates for reasons other than fornication — then it promotes the sin of adultery. In fact it drags a third person into the sin of adultery if they have relations with the one who had gotten the divorce. The changing of the divorce ordinance sounds like it promotes sin to me — in the same way changing the marriage ordinance would.

    Both are sins but one sin is layed on the shoulders of both the administrant and the one administered to, while the other sin is layed on only the one being administered to.

    Now that makes some sense to me. This is the only part of your description of how marriage and divorce in the eyes of God should be considered different when it comes to the state setting criteria for performing them that’s different than His I think I could understand.

    Except for what I just said about promoting the sin of adultery by allowing unauthorized divorces — I think I can get what you’re saying here.

    I could have sworn I had this conversation already with you or someone else, about the difference between the law of Moses and the law of Christ, but what the hell, I’ll say it again. The law of Moses is the law of Christ, for Christ is the one that gave the law of Moses. As such, the law of Moses is a just law. There’s nothing evil about it, it wasn’t inspired of the devil and it wasn’t man-made. The law given to Moses had an end in Christ because of expediency, not because it was a bad law.

    That conversation wasn’t with me. But either way I didn’t say that the law of Moses was inspired of the devil, man-made, or bad. So you don’t have to convince me of that. You were just saying the state can “fall back on” the “more liberal” Mosaic law with divorce — but that it was different with marriage. I didn’t understand that.

    All that said, however, I think the State ought to get out of the divorce business, too, which is as much a racket as is their marriage business.

    Maybe that is the whole of my problem in the first place. With both marriage and divorce — the whole thing is all messed up for me because the state is involved, authorizing and formalizing it’s own thing — when the whole matter [that of marriage and divorce] is a religious ordinance [like that of baptism or priesthood ordination].

    If it was all just left alone for churches to do [or not do] as they see expedient according to the law of God among their congregations — then I could probably be on board with what you’re saying much quicker.

    The problem is — like in the case that brought DOMA to the Supreme Court — the government and civil-only matters are affected by the state’s involvement.

    A woman had to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars to the IRS in estate taxes when her partner died [they were a same-gender couple legally married in their state]. Her case was that the relationship she and her wife had was only different from the relationship of other married people in that they were both women. And she argued that that’s not sufficient cause to make her pay hundreds of thousands of dollars in estate taxes just because she’s a woman [whereas if she’d had the exact same relationship with a man, the government wouldn’t have taxed her like that].

    Obviously, this wouldn’t be an issue in the first place if the state wasn’t granting civil privileges and benefits for relationships it’s recognized. But inasmuch as it keeps on doing that — then I think the heterosexual marriage crowd is going to keep losing these marriage cases in the courts because the discrimination isn’t fair [on civil grounds]. There’s no “non-religious” case one can make to defend what the state is doing.

    Now, I didn’t receive the revelation you had about same-gender marriage playing a role in bringing an end to the LDS church — but I trust that you did receive it. So, if that is in fact the way the future will play out, then I certainly place the cause of it all on the history of marriage licensing by the state — and not on the promoters of same-gender relationship equality.

    Oh yeah — and:

    I’m beginning to feel like I’m in a conversation with Andrew

    Lol. So wait, is that a good thing or a bad thing?

  73. But if marriage is an ordinance of God, then so is divorce. If He has foreordained parameters for legitimate marriages and revealed those to mankind, then so to has He done with legitimate divorces.

    Authorizing marriage-separations for reasons other than those God has given sounds just as much of a “changing of the ordinance” as authorizing marriage-connections for genders He didn’t authorize to marry.

    Jesus says that if a couple separates for reasons other than fornication — then it promotes the sin of adultery. In fact it drags a third person into the sin of adultery if they have relations with the one who had gotten the divorce. The changing of the divorce ordinance sounds like it promotes sin to me — in the same way changing the marriage ordinance would.

    Yes, it is an ordinance, but it only consists of 1) a writ of divorcement and 2) putting away the wife. If you divorce in any other way, that would be changing the ordinance, or not performing it. The reasons for the ordinance, or the intent of the people performing the ordinance, is a separate matter altogether. People can get baptized correctly, but if the intent of their hearts is not right, or if they do it for the wrong reasons, does that invalidate the baptism? No. It still remains as a witness to God. (Perhaps as a false witness, if you did not have real intent, but a witness nonetheless.)

    Just as people have been given authority to marry, so the authority to divorce is invested in mankind already. We are already authorized to divorce whenever we want for whatever reason we want. Nevertheless, we are not to use the ordinance except in a specific case. But it is our choice, just as marriage is our choice, according to our agency. And, just as any man has power to divorce from his wife, by performing the ordinance, so he can delegate that power to another, say to a church or to the State, by granting a church or State power over marriage and divorce. The authorization comes from man, for both ordinances, and in the case of State divorcements, it precisely follows the procedure, for divorce papers are signed and the couple separate. So, there is no change in this ordinance by the State.

    Regarding the adultery thing, Matthew and Mark don’t agree on all that went down in that conversation. According to Mark, it appears that that was a private, not public teaching, given to the apostles:

    And in the house his disciples asked him again of the same matter. And he saith unto them,

    Whosoever shall put away his wife, and marry another, committeth adultery against her. And if a woman shall put away her husband, and be married to another, she committeth adultery.

    (Mark 10:10-12)

    This corresponds to what is written in D&C 132. The public teaching was what was said to the Pharisees:

    And the Pharisees came to him, and asked him,

    Is it lawful for a man to put away his wife?

    tempting him. And he answered and said unto them,

    What did Moses command you?

    And they said,

    Moses suffered to write a bill of divorcement, and to put her away.

    And Jesus answered and said unto them,

    For the hardness of your heart he wrote you this precept. But from the beginning of the creation God made them male and female. For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and cleave to his wife; and they twain shall be one flesh: so then they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.

    (Mark 10:2-9)

    Matthew has it a little different, though it still appears that this was a private teaching:

    The Pharisees also came unto him, tempting him, and saying unto him,

    Is it lawful for a man to put away his wife for every cause?

    And he answered and said unto them,

    Have ye not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female, and said,

    For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh?

    Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.

    They say unto him,

    Why did Moses then command to give a writing of divorcement, and to put her away?

    He saith unto them,

    Moses because of the hardness of your hearts suffered you to put away your wives: but from the beginning it was not so. And I say unto you (the apostles?),

    Whosoever shall put away his wife, except it be for fornication, and shall marry another, committeth adultery: and whoso marrieth her which is put away doth commit adultery.

    His disciples say unto him,

    If the case of the man be so with his wife, it is not good to marry.

    But he said unto them,

    All men cannot receive this (private?) saying, save they to whom it is given. For there are some eunuchs, which were so born from their mother’s womb: and there are some eunuchs, which were made eunuchs of men: and there be eunuchs, which have made themselves eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven’s sake. He that is able to receive it, let him receive it.

    This (apparently private) saying doesn’t mean that everyone in the world who is divorced and has married again is an adulterer or adulteress and is going to hell. The saying is referring to marital separation, not divorce. In other words, divorce a mensa et thoro, not divorce a vinculo matrimonii.

    To the Nephites, the Savior said,

    It hath been written,

    that whosoever shall put away his wife, let him give her a writing of divorcement.

    Verily, verily, I say unto you,

    that whosoever shall put away his wife, saving for the cause of fornication, causeth her to commit adultery; and whoso shall marry her who is divorced committeth adultery.

    Again, this is speaking of divorce a mensâ et thoro, not divorce a vinculo matrimonii. The divorce authorized by Moses with the writ of divorcement was divorce a vinculo matrimonii. Divorce a mensâ et toro is only authorized for fornication and it doesn’t require a writ of divorcement because the marriage was based on a fraud. But divorce a vinculo matrimonii requires a writ of divorcement. Anyone who engages in divorce a mensâ et thoro outside of the parameters of fornication, and is with another, is guilty of adultery.

    Anyway, I don’t want to get into the whys and wherefores of divorce, though it might make a good topic for a post.

  74. It’s funny that you have me, an anarchist, in a protracted conversation about the laws of the state.

    In United States v. Windsor, the Court heard a challenge to Section 3 of the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which defined marriage as a male-female union for federal purposes created in federal law. Justice Kennedy and the four more liberal justices—Kagan, Sotomayor, Breyer, and Ginsburg—struck down that section. Dissents were filed by Chief Justice Roberts, Justice Scalia, and Justice Alito, joined by Justice Thomas.

    In the second case, Perry v. Hollingsworth, the Court considered Proposition 8, the referendum in which California citizens amended their constitution to preserve conjugal marriage in state law. The California attorney general, normally responsible for defending such laws, refused in this case, so Prop 8’s proponents stepped in. But the Court ruled that they had no standing—no legal right—to do so. Chief Justice Roberts wrote the majority opinion, joined by Justices Scalia, Ginsburg, Breyer, and Kagan. Justice Kennedy dissented, joined by Justices Alito, Thomas, and Sotomayor.

    I am bothered by the lack of unanimity in the Court. Five justices said the law means this, and four justices said the law means that, the very opposite. I am reminded of what Joseph Smith wrote:

    For the teachers of religion of the different sects understood the same passages of scripture so differently as to destroy all confidence in settling the question by an appeal to the Bible.

    Taking the same sentiment and applying it to this situation, I might say,

    For the Supreme Court Justices understood the same passages of law so differently as to destroy all confidence in settling the question by an appeal to the Supreme Court.

    The political scene, then, to my mind, is a mess of confusion, everyone relying upon their own biases with unanimous clarity and agreement found nowhere. It is just as likely that the four dissenting judges were correct in their dissenting opinion as that they were wrong.

    Now, I didn’t receive the revelation you had about same-gender marriage playing a role in bringing an end to the LDS church — but I trust that you did receive it.

    It is interesting that the passage or non-passage of Prop 8 didn’t matter, according to the Spirit, for the church would still be broken up. At the time, before the Prop 8 vote, I didn’t know what to make of that revelation. I have written on this blog about a friendly wager between a friend of mine and me, about whether Prop 8 would pass. I said no, he said yes. So, he won. But then it was deemed unconstitutional by the courts. So, I won. But then it went to the Supreme Court and now it gets no standing. Anyway, I mention all this because I never considered what lawyers and judges could do to create or remove legislation. I have always found it curious that the Book of Mormon put so much emphasis on the corruption of lawyers and judges, almost as if the same thing would play out among the Gentiles:

    And now behold, I say unto you, that the foundation of the destruction of this people is beginning to be laid by the unrighteousness of your lawyers and your judges.

    I have a sneaky suspicion that at some point we are going to see a repeat of 3 Nephi 6:20-23 and the same charge will be laid against them that was laid against Alma and Amulek:

    And again, he has reviled against our lawyers, and our judges.

    which will end in their blood being spilled. We are not there yet, but the writing on the wall, although still fuzzy, makes me think of these things…

    Oh yeah — and:

    I’m beginning to feel like I’m in a conversation with Andrew

    Lol. So wait, is that a good thing or a bad thing?

    I’d say it’s a good thing, since Andrew was able to draw out new theological information that I wasn’t aware of.

  75. Church Responds to Supreme Court Marriage Rulings

    Salt Lake City —

    The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints released the following statement today regarding the decisions announced by the United States Supreme Court on cases involving marriage:

    “By ruling that supporters of Proposition 8 lacked standing to bring this case to court, the Supreme Court has highlighted troubling questions about how our democratic and judicial system operates. Many Californians will wonder if there is something fundamentally wrong when their government will not defend or protect a popular vote that reflects the views of a majority of their citizens.

    “In addition, the effect of the ruling is to raise further complex jurisdictional issues that will need to be resolved.

    “Regardless of the court decision, the Church remains irrevocably committed to strengthening traditional marriage between a man and a woman, which for thousands of years has proven to be the best environment for nurturing children. Notably, the court decision does not change the definition of marriage in nearly three-fourths of the states.”

    On another topic, now that you have my mind thinking about divorce, I realize that the same heterosexual-only context found in scriptural marriage is also found in scriptural divorce. The scriptures only speak of a man putting away his wife or a woman departing from her husband. Just as it is impossible for a same-sex couple to be married to each other, so they can’t divorce each other, using these scriptural laws.

  76. From the NOM blog:

    Kevin Drum of Mother Jones — a liberal outlet — admits that he is unsettled by what the Supreme Court did (or rather, chose not to do) on Prop 8:

    “In California, it’s routine for the people to pass initiatives that neither the governor nor the legislature supports. In fact, that was the whole point of the initiative process when it was created. In cases like these, of course the governor and legislature are going to decline to defend the law in court. With today’s decision, the Supreme Court is basically gutting the people’s right to pass initiatives that elected officials don’t like and then to defend them all the way to the highest court in the land.

    To me, this has neither the flavor of justice nor of democratic governance, regardless of whether I like the outcome.”

    Those are my sentiments exactly. Full article here:

    The Big Problem With the Supreme Court’s Prop. 8 Decision

    The dissenting opinion begins on page 22:

    http://s3.documentcloud.org/documents/717698/prop-8-decision.pdf

  77. I also might as well include this in case anyone is interested in the DOMA case, too.

    The dissenting opinion begins on page 31:

    http://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/12pdf/12-307_6j37.pdf

  78. One more thought and then I’ll end for today. The word “decouple” popped into my head as I pondered about SSM. Decouple means “to eliminate the interrelationship of : separate”. The verb “separate” has the following meanings:

    1 a : to set or keep apart : disconnect, sever
    b : to make a distinction between : discriminate, distinguish
    c : sort
    d : to disperse in space or time : scatter
    2 archaic : to set aside for a special purpose : choose, dedicate
    3 : to part by a legal separation:
    a : to sever conjugal ties with
    b : to sever contractual relations with : discharge
    4 : to block off : segregate
    5 a : to isolate from a mixture : extract
    b : to divide into constituent parts
    6 : to dislocate (as a shoulder) especially in sports

    Notice, in particular, 3 a, “to sever conjugal ties with”. The severing of conjugal ties is another way of saying “divorce”.

    I find it interesting that traditional marriage is now being called, conjugal marriage, whereas SSM is being called companionate. From that article, the two perspectives are summarized in this way:

    From the conjugal perspective, marriage is a permanent legal union between a man and a woman who unite their families ostensibly for the purpose of having children, and who arrange their lives legally, civilly, and socially with the welfare of forthcoming (and preceding) generations in mind, and who enter into a legal obligation to remain loyal to that arrangement to the end of their lives, to be dissolved only for compelling reasons.

    From a companionate perspective, marriage is civil arrangement between two lovers for the purposes of sharing finances, assets, etc. (generally with the interests of the individual couple in mind, irrespective of forthcoming generations), to be dissolved if either party loses interest in the arrangement without legal consequence.

    SSM decouples both the conjugal ties and the ties to future generations (children). The scriptural term “to put away” means, essentially, “to separate,” often translated as “to divorce.” So, “put away” = “separate” = “decouple” = “divorce.” SSM, then, is not really a form of marriage, but a form of divorce. In order to engage in legalized SSM, one cannot obey the law of chastity command to take a wife (for that would be bigamy, which is against the laws of men), essentially putting away one’s future bride. And this is a commandment of God to all the men, for notice what Jesus says in Matthew to the Pharisees:

    have ye not read
    that he
    which made them at the beginning
    made them male and female
    and said

    for this cause shall a man leave father and mother
    and shall cleave to his wife
    and they twain shall be one flesh

    “A man shall leave his father and mother and shall cleave to his wife” is a commandment of God, spoken by God, and not written by some editorial Jew tweaking with the Genesis text, according to Jesus.

    Same-sex divorce (SSD) is really a double divorce, for it divorces each party from any potential future husband or wife. I wonder if Malachi’s words apply to SSD?

    For the Lord, the God of Israel, saith that he hateth putting away

  79. On another topic, now that you have my mind thinking about divorce, I realize that the same heterosexual-only context found in scriptural marriage is also found in scriptural divorce. The scriptures only speak of a man putting away his wife or a woman departing from her husband. Just as it is impossible for a same-sex couple to be married to each other, so they can’t divorce each other, using these scriptural laws.

    and

    SSM decouples both the conjugal ties and the ties to future generations (children). The scriptural term “to put away” means, essentially, “to separate,” often translated as “to divorce.” So, “put away” = “separate” = “decouple” = “divorce.” SSM, then, is not really a form of marriage, but a form of divorce. In order to engage in legalized SSM, one cannot obey the law of chastity command to take a wife (for that would be bigamy, which is against the laws of men), essentially putting away one’s future bride. And this is a commandment of God to all the men, for notice what Jesus says in Matthew to the Pharisees:
    […]

    “A man shall leave his father and mother and shall cleave to his wife” is a commandment of God, spoken by God, and not written by some editorial Jew tweaking with the Genesis text, according to Jesus.

    Same-sex divorce (SSD) is really a double divorce, for it divorces each party from any potential future husband or wife. I wonder if Malachi’s words apply to SSD?

    For the Lord, the God of Israel, saith that he hateth putting away

    These are two good points that I found quite interesting. I’ll have to think more on these today.

  80. I read this at Times and Seasons today and it made me think of your “friendly wager” over Prop 8 LDSA:

    [It appears that the people of California] have been disenfranchised [only] at the federal level, but not at the state level. In its decision yesterday, the Supreme Court nullified the ruling of the (federal) Ninth Circuit that Prop 8 is unconstitutional. Many onlookers assumed that meant that the holding of the trial court, from which the Ninth Circuit was hearing an appeal, would be decisive for California law, and since the trial court held Prop 8 unconstitutional, that would mean that Prop 8 was nullified. But apparently only an appellate court’s decision on unconstitutionality is decisive for California law. So the trial court’s decision may apply to the specific people involved in the case, but not to California generally. The dust has hardly settled from this event, and probably won’t settle for years, but it looks like Prop 8 still stands, as decided by the people of California.

    The ruling still says that the people of California may have the authority to make law themselves, but do not have the authority to defend it themselves at the federal level.

    […]

    So maybe your friend is still winning.

  81. Gay Couples Who Sued in California Are Married

    LOS ANGELES — The two couples who sued to overturn California’s ban on same-sex marriage were married late Friday afternoon, just hours after the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, in San Francisco, lifted the stay that had been in place.

    Paul Katami and Jeffrey Zarrillo, the two other plaintiffs in the case, were married Friday evening, by Mayor Antonio R. Villaraigosa of Los Angeles on his last day in office.

    The court had stopped same-sex marriages while the case wound its way through the Supreme Court, which issued its decision to clear the path for same-sex marriages in California on Wednesday.

    Attorney General Kamala Harris rushed to San Francisco City Hall within minutes of the ruling to perform the wedding for Kris Perry and Sandy Stier, who have been together for more than 15 years and have four sons.

    Many legal experts and advocates had expected the court to wait for an official decision from the Supreme Court, as is the normal practice. But after the initial ruling was issued on Wednesday, Ms. Harris urged the Circuit Court to act immediately and said she would ensure that all counties in the state were prepared to issue licenses to same-sex couples.

    Just after 3 p.m. Friday, the three-judge panel issued a one-sentence ruling lifting the stay on a district judge’s injunction to not enforce the ban on same-sex marriages.

    Gov. Jerry Brown issued a statement late Friday afternoon saying that he had directed the state’s Department of Health to notify all 58 counties in the state that “same-sex marriage is now legal in California and that marriage licenses must be issued to same-sex couples immediately.”

    While Sacramento County officials said they planned to stay open late Friday to issue licenses, most applicants were probably waiting until Monday, when all counties will be open for regular business.

    John J. Duran, a councilman from West Hollywood, said that within hours of the court ruling Friday he had promised to officiate at two weddings next week.

    Andy Pugno, the general counsel for ProtectMarriage.com, said the court had rushed a decision on Proposition 8, the state’s ban on same-sex marriage, and called it a “disgraceful day for California.”

    “This outrageous act tops off a chronic pattern of lawlessness, throughout this case, by judges and politicians hellbent on thwarting the vote of the people to redefine marriage by any means, even outright corruption,” he said in a statement.

    Here is Pugno’s complete statement:

    Outrageous Act by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals!

    We just received word that the Ninth Circuit, without waiting for the Supreme Court’s decision to become final and depriving us of our right to ask for reconsideration, has rushed forward to order same-sex marriage licenses.This outrageous act tops off a chronic pattern of lawlessness, throughout this case, by judges and politicians hell-bent on thwarting the vote of the people to redefine marriage by any means, even outright corruption.

    ”Homosexual marriage is not happening because the people changed their mind. It isn’t happening because the appellate courts declared a new constitutional right. It’s happening because enemies of the people have abused their power to manipulate the system and render the people voiceless.

    “The resumption of same-sex marriage this day has been obtained by illegitimate means. If our opponents rejoice in achieving their goal in a dishonorable fashion, they should be ashamed.

    “It remains to be seen whether the fight can go on, but either way, it is a disgraceful day for California.”

    This actually follows the pattern of the Gadianton Robbers, who break the legitimate law whenever they can and create their own shadow government and shadow system of laws, as described in Helaman 6:

    And thus they might murder, and plunder, and steal, and commit whoredoms and all manner of wickedness, contrary to the laws of their country and also the laws of their God.

    And whosoever of those who belonged to their band should reveal unto the world of their wickedness and their abominations, should be tried, not according to the laws of their country, but according to the laws of their wickedness, which had been given by Gadianton and Kishkumen.

    So, I think I may have won the bet…

  82. Justin,

    A woman had to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars to the IRS in estate taxes when her partner died [they were a same-gender couple legally married in their state]. Her case was that the relationship she and her wife had was only different from the relationship of other married people in that they were both women. And she argued that that’s not sufficient cause to make her pay hundreds of thousands of dollars in estate taxes just because she’s a woman [whereas if she’d had the exact same relationship with a man, the government wouldn’t have taxed her like that].

    The Federal laws are often different than the laws of each individual State. Smoking pot under federal law is a no-no, but under the laws of a particular State, it has legal provisions. Also, at the Federal level, terms can be defined one way for Federal purposes, while at the State level, the same terms can vary from State to State, each State defining the term as they see fit.

    Are you suggesting that the Federal government has no power to define its legal terms, but must use the legal definitions of each State, as variable as they are? In other words, must the Federal government conform to the laws of each State, so that there is no equal application of Federal law among the States? Also, if you concede that the Feds can define their own terms, is it not the representative body, the house of legislators, that is empowered to define those terms? And did they not do this, but which was struck down by the SCOTUS majority opinion? In other words, is this not, yet again, a case of a legally authorized body of people legitimately exercising their rights, only to have them infringed upon and curtailed by a court?

    I can see this DOMA affair from both sides of the argument, but as there is no Constitutional civil right to marriage, SSM advocates lack legal basis, while the other side (the House of Representatives) has a legal basis. So, we end up with the one side, without legal basis, infringing on the rights of the side with legal basis. Although we may not like the fact that the Feds can make their own definitions, it is still a legal fact. Even if I was totally for SSM, like you, this DOMA decision is one I couldn’t get behind. Federal laws and State laws differ. Everyone knows this. When dealing with tax matters, we don’t complain that the tax laws don’t conform to our situation and expect sympathy when we do things that cause us to pay more taxes, but we plan our lives accordingly to pay the least amount of tax we can. The tax laws apply equally across the States, regardless of what the State tax laws, or other laws, are. To do this, each term must be defined at the Federal level. I am no lawyer, but this is basic common sense.

    If the Feds define marriage as a man and a wife, or a husband and a wife, the woman doesn’t have a husband, does she? It doesn’t matter what her State defines marriage as, for Federal purposes she has not qualified for the Federal benefits, under the Federal definitions, which are applied equally. So, SCOTUS’s majority opinion was not correct in the DOMA case. It only makes sense if we assume that marriage is a legal term that must and can be defined only at the State level, not the Federal level, which is what SCOTUS’s majority opinion was saying. But that is preposterous. The Feds define, and have power to define, all their federal terms. All of them. Regardless of whether they are the same or different definitions than what each State assigns. So, SCOTUS has, once again, removed power from Congress to do something they are duly authorized to do.

  83. As an example of everyone understanding this, here are Lorian’s words that she wrote of the W&T’s DOMA post:

    Stephen, I think the key issue here is that Protect Marriage’s taking over of the appeals process for Prop 8 was ruled acceptable *under state law* by the CA state supreme court, but that doesn’t guarantee that it is acceptable under federal law for the purposes of a federal appeal, over which SCOTUS has jurisdiction. The fact that it’s permissible under the CA Constitution does not guarantee that it meets the requirements of federal law.

    This same point is applicable under the DOMA ruling. SCOTUS ruled in the Prop 8 decision that State and Federal definitions (the definition of “standing”) are different, but in the DOMA decision, they ruled that the definition of “marriage” must match each State’s definition. Both majority decisions were unjustly made by the majority of the court.

  84. Are you suggesting that the Federal government has no power to define its legal terms, but must use the legal definitions of each State, as variable as they are?

    No. I’m saying that it’s not fair for her to have to pay the hundreds of thousands of dollars in estate taxes. I agree with the 10th amendment and on the separations between state law and federal law in a republic.

    So if that scenario reflects the way the federal government defines things — then I think they’re defined poorly because that woman’s scenario is unfair.

    but as there is no Constitutional civil right to marriage

    I think it’s best to say that there’s no Constitutional civil right to the civil privileges and benefits we choose to ascribe to couples who can obtain a state-issued marriage license. None of that stuff that we do with marriage is described in the Constitution. But I think the actual relationship we call “marriage” [as a name for how two people are relating to each other] is a natural right and should be protected as a civil right, a la “the pursuit of happiness” and the right of assembly/gathering together.

    Obviously “marriage” in the sense of two people sharing a life-long relationship of cohabitation, sexual activity and love do not require legal permission from the government. But the problem with this legal debate over same-gender marriages is that there’s a lot of government-issued “goodies” that married couples have access to that I don’t think there’s a fair case for denying from same-gender couples: e.g., receiving insurance through the spouse’s coverage, visitation rights in a hospital, adopting a child, filing jointly for income tax, taking family leave when the spouse is sick, making arrangements after death, etc. — just because their relationship [which has the same feelings of love, emotional fulfillment, and sexual satisfaction that a good/healthy heterosexual couple would have] is not legally recognized with a state-issued license.

  85. Those same “goodies” are the benefits that the State offers to married persons precisely because it benefits the State that children be raised with a mother and a father living together in this manner as its biological parents. The State has a vested interest in conyugal marriage, because of the prospect of reproduction. It has no such interest in companionate marriage. This is why it promotes conyugal marriage by offering these benefits, so that people have an incentive to marry someone of the opposite sex and raise children in that environment. There is no such compelling interest in same-sex marriage. Anyone that enters into conyugal marriage is offered the same benefits, so the law is applied equally. SSM seeks to turn marriage into benefits given by the State without corresponding benefits received by the State. The benefits are intrinsically tied to the biological prospect of having children.

    To be plainer, the State in concerned with perpetuating itself, which requires future tax-payers, but without the heavy social and economic costs that come from promiscuous behavior. The way it has opted to ensure that is through conyugal marriage. SSM takes away the interest the State has in marriage, dispensing benefits to people who are incapable of reproducing among themselves.

    So, you are right to say that it is unfair. It is unfair that a married couple gets more tax benefits than a single person. Should the state offer the same benefits to single people that it offers to married couples? It is obviouly unfair, favoring one status over another. But once you understand the reason for the favoritism, that it benefits the State, then you can understand that it makes no sense to extend the same benefits of conyugal marriage to companionate marriage, because that is akin to dealing with two single people, or taking two single people, incapable of reproducing, and treating them as if they could reproduce and thus produce benefit to the State.

    The intrinsic unfairness of these laws is reduced to a promotion of a type of relationship that benefits the State. Once the State adopts SSM, then, by default, it starts to promote this wickedness, by the offering of benefits. It institutionalizes wickedness without any good reason, whatsoever. The State, and society, receives nothing in return, except a further weakening of the divine, conyugal pattern.

    When you say,

    So if that scenario reflects the way the federal government defines things — then I think they’re defined poorly because that woman’s scenario is unfair.

    you are right. Either the definition in DOMA was defined poorly, or the State’s definition was defined poorly. SSM is a recent invention. The traditionally defined marriage relationship is well defined. DOMA went with the traditional definition, which has historical and scriptural precedent. Whick SCOTUS struck down. The States allowing SSM have re-defined marriage, breaking from history and scripture. Which definition is the poor one? The answer is manifestly obvious.

    Every time you speak of marriage in terms of a life-long relationship of cohabitation, emotional fulfillment, sexual activity, love, etc., you leave out the one thing that marriage is for, for its primary purpose is reproduction. Theologically, we are not married so that we can engage in lawful sexual relations. (Marriage is not so we can have sex.) Theologically, we are married so that we may lawfully fulfill the commandment to multiply and replenish the earth, which is the fruit of our sexual tree. Marriage is to be able to have seed, in this life and also in the next (for temple marriages). Historically, marriage is viewed the same way, as the proper means to reproduce and raise children.

    SSM simply doesn’t fit when children are factored in. It is a barren imitation of marriage, incapable of reproduction, except through cloning (via more SSM). It is a dead tree from the get-go, producing no fruit. It is artificial in every way. That you want to reduce it to just two people eliminates the very reason marriage was ordained of God in the first place. It was ordained because it was a “tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to [us] it shall be for meat.” A married couple coming together, become this “one flesh” tree, the seed of the man being planted in the fertile ground of the woman, until the tree springs up, producing fruit. It is in this fruit that we store up against the season, in which we have joy, which are children.

    The whole of the gospel revolves around the principle of reproduction. This is why we are the “children of God,” He having begotten us. And so forth. I won’t rehearse the entire matter. Suffice it to say that the State’s marriage laws were based upon these reproductive facts, and thus, the woman denied benefits because she wasn’t married to a man makes sense according to this view. In the State’s eyes, she is incapable of reproduction, for she has no husband, and thus the State has no interest in promoting her husband-less status by extending to her the same benefits offered to women who do have husbands, women who are capable of producing children with those husbands.

  86. You use the natural law argument to tie the purpose of marriage families together with reproduction — when many couples are infertile, or get married after reproductive age, and many couples are not economically-sound enough to provide for the maintenance of large families [especially when we keep them separate with sanctions against plural husbands and wives], and there are plenty of already-born children who aren’t cared for well-enough and could be adopted instead.

    How does the state get their “kids are being born”, conjugal benefit from infertile couples getting married or couples marrying after their reproductive age? Are you saying that the state gets no benefit from a same-gender couple who will adopt children from orphanages [who are wards of the state — meaning the couple is taking the children off their hands — sounds “beneficial” to me]?

  87. The law assumes both fertility and economic soundness. It’s as simple as that. For same-sex couples, it must be assumed that reproduction will not happen, because it is impossible for same-sex couples to reproduce. Adoption has nothing, whatsoever, to do with the state’s promotion of marriage. Adoption deals with children that already exist. The state is concerned with the generation of future tax-payers, who do not yet exist, not future tax-payers that already exist. The beast needs newly born people to continue to function in perpetuity. This is why there are marriage tax benefits offered.

    The state doesn’t care about how loving, sexually fulfilled, emotionally connected or any other quality your relationship has. It only is concerned with the creation of new, law-abiding tax-payers. This is its only interest in marriage and its only interest in promoting it. SSM destroys that interest, altogether, removing all reason for the state’s involvement in marriage. In other words, although the state’s marriage benefits are unfair to the unmarried, it has valid reasons for setting up its promotions. With SSM put on par with marriage, those reasons are removed, making the unfair promotion completely arbitrary.

    Both single and married people can adopt, in the states that allow gay adoption, so marriage is not a prerequisite. Also, the state cannot (and does not) assume adoption in marriage. In other words, even with adoption as the topic, there still is no valid reason to promote SSM.

  88. The law assumes both fertility and economic soundness.

    You say that based on what? I don’t think that it does.

    The state could just as easily prevent infertile or elderly people from getting a marriage license [if what you’re saying is correct] — in the same way they prevent related people and people who already have a marriage license from getting them.

    There’s no “fertility” or “economic soundness” requirement for marriage licenses — as there are with cousins/siblings, polygamists, and same-gender couples.

    The natural law argument that equates marriage with having children simply doesn’t reflect the diverse reality of who gets married and why. My grandmother got remarried in her 70’s. Why should the state have given her the civil privileges and benefits afforded to legal marriage when she can’t “feed the beast” with more children?

    Adoption has nothing, whatsoever, to do with the state’s promotion of marriage. Adoption deals with children that already exist.

    Exactly — and my point was that those “already-existing” children without parents are wards of the state — which means the government is legally their steward. Adoption would save the state life-blood tax revenue because they would not longer have to spend it on the children that get adopted. They have selfish, monetary reasons to promote families adopting children — to get them off the state’s ledger.

    And I would say that there are plenty of reasons why we [as a society/country] would benefit from promoting loving, sexually fulfilled, emotionally connected, etc. families — regardless of the gender of the partners involved.

  89. The law works with the standards, not the exceptions. Infertility is rare in both the man and the woman. Even in older couples, with the woman in menopause, the man typically is capable of siring young. Not with his old wife, of course, but with some pretty young thing that catches his fancy. Marriage then keeps the fertile man bound to one woman, increasing the chances of reproduction in an ideal environment (new, law-abiding tax-payers) and/or reducing the chances of illegitimate children on the side (new wards of the state sucking up funds). Regardless of whether the couple is young or old, it serves the interests of the state, which is why conyugal marriage is promoted by the state. Children, regardless of what age you look at, is at the heart of the state’s interest in marriage. SSM, on the other hand, is divorced from children, in either scenario, thus no state interest.

    It would go against the state’s interests to prevent elderly people from getting married. The men of such would-be marriages would just shack up with younger women, producing illegitimate children, something the state doesn’t want. And, pre-marriage fertility tests would be an invasion of privacy. So, although it could prevent the infertile from marrying, it would first have to get over the hurdle of finding out who is fertile and who is not, which is like looking for a needle in a haystack, since most couples are fertile. So, it just assumes fertility and assumes that the parties entering into the marriage are economically stable.

    The benefits associated with marriage assume fertility (of the male.) There are tax benefits, estate planning benefits, government benefits, employment benefits, medical benefits, death benefits, family benefits, housing benefits, consumer benefits as well as other legal benefits and protections. The reason for all this promotion of conyugal marriage is to bind down the man to one woman, so that any potential reproduction remains in that institution. The law doesn’t care about the law of chastity, or about love, or any of that. It only cares about children being produced within marriage and children not being produced outside of marriage.

    I think the above answers the question you posed about your grandmother.

    Re: adoption, marriage doesn’t promote “loving, sexually fulfilled, emotionally connected, etc. families.” It just brings two opposite gender people together. Whether they end up loving each other, being sexually fulfilled, emotionally connected, etc., is entirely up to them in their circumstances. So, when dealing with children, there are some obvious things to take into consideration, concerning the needs of the children. Certainly it could be argued that children have a need and a right to be raised by a male father figure, demonstrating maleness, and a female mother-figure, demonstrating femaleness. The two females or two males model seems more like a social experiment. We shouldn’t subject children to social experiments. I certainly do not know what will come of it. Does anyone? Perhaps nothing bad will happen to such children. Perhaps they will be well-adjusted. Or perhaps they will become the most wicked generation the planet has ever seen. Do we really have a right to take such a risk with innocent children?

  90. The following article brings up some very valid points.

    Do infertile couples clinch the case for same-sex marriage?

    Nope. All infertilities are not equal. There is a crucial difference between an infertile heterosexual union and an impotent homosexual one.

    The pro-homosexual movement uses the matter of infertility in an attempt to gain traction for same-sex marriage by pointing out that if infertile heterosexual couples can marry, then the ability to procreate cannot be a prerequisite for or essential to marriage. Therefore, they reason, homosexuals should also be allowed to marry. However, this argument works only if there is no distinction between the infertility of homosexual relations and those of an infertile heterosexual couple. In other words, all infertilities would have to be equal, ie, existing for the same reason.

    Is this so?

    It is not. Homosexual relations are essentially sterile, while heterosexual relations are only accidentally sterile. In fact, they are not even both infertilities properly speaking. This is a smokescreen used to deflect attention from the real underlying issue. Infertility is an issue only in respect to those whose exercise of their procreative powers in heterosexual intercourse has failed for some reason that may be due to congenital or temporary health problems.

    …homosexual liaisons do not possess procreative potentiality. They are, therefore, not properly called infertile but, more accurately, impotent.

    Infertility equivalence also presumes equivalence between the kinds of acts in an infertile heterosexual union and in an impotent homosexual one. Regardless of its fertility or infertility on any specific occasion, the coital act is procreative by its nature – as only it can produce life – even when and if procreation does not result, as it does not in the vast majority of cases during a couple’s fertile lifetime. Is the nature of marital relations fundamentally different during the frequent instances when pregnancy does not occur? Are those acts, then, equivalent in kind to sodomy? At a certain point, all heterosexual couples become permanently infertile due to age, but does this make the character of their acts sodomitical? It does not. They are no less marital or generative in their nature because they always remain, in their “one-flesh” aspect, unitive – something a homosexual act can never be. Unitive coition is obviously the necessary precondition for procreation, which is why these acts remain generative in their essence.

    However, sodomy, by its nature and in all circumstances, is a non-procreative act. One might even say that it is an anti-procreative act. Sodomy and coition have never been treated the same before because they are not the same. Judge Walker’s ruling and the current case against Proposition 8 rest on a denial of this. If these two acts can be equated, then treating them differently would be wrong. In the law, like must be treated alike. It is with the implicit conflation of sodomy and the marital act that Judge Walker and the current litigants try to manufacture the charge of the denial of equal protection and discrimination against Proposition 8.

    Common law holds, and has always held, that a marriage is not valid until it is consummated. What does consummating a marriage mean? It means and has always meant by law an act of vaginal intercourse between the husband and wife. If this act does not take place, the marriage can be legally declared a nullity. Until consummation, it is subject to annulment. Therefore, becoming “one flesh” is not optional for a legally valid marriage. If one is incapable of consummating a marriage or simply unwilling to do so for any reason, there can be no marriage, and therefore no “right” to it can exist. In legal terms, the spouse requesting an annulment of marriage on the grounds of impotency must prove that the impotence or physical incapacity in the partner is permanent and incurable, and was so at the time of the marriage. Any attempted union between two males or two females easily meets these criteria for annulment. (Infertility, on the other hand, is not a ground for annulment.)

    Infertility and impotence are not the same; neither are coition and sodomy. So yes, dear litigants in the Proposition 8 case, the ability to marry is not contingent on fertility, but it is contingent on potency, on consummation – on becoming “one flesh”. On that requirement alone, your case for same-sex marriage fails.

    I think the distinction between the words infertility and impotence is important to make, showing that they are not equivalent. Also, that sodomy and coitus are not equivalent. One is procreative, even if life is not produced, while the other is non-procreative. So no equivalence there, either. Finally, the consummation aspect of marriage has no equivalence in SSM.

  91. The real argument for continuing to treat marriage as the union of a man and a woman is that marriage and marriage law exist to channel sexual behavior in a way that promotes the flourishing of children. They exist, that is, to solve a problem that does not arise in same-sex unions: that heterosexual sex often gives rise to children. They exist to uphold the ideal that children need the mother and father who created them to stay in a stable relationship together. Recognition of same-sex marriage means that the institution is no longer about those things.

    (Taken from here.)

    This is exactly what I’ve been trying to say. Whether young or old, it is the channeling of procreative sexual behavior (heterosexual sex) into the confines of monogamy that gives the state a compelling interest in marriage. If the potential for reproduction is removed from the equation, the state has no more interest in marriage.

  92. The article I linked over at W&T concerning the health risks of homosexual behavior brought up the term, “monogamy without fidelity.” Quoting the relevant section from the article:

    E. “Monogamy”

    Monogamy for heterosexual couples means at a minimum sexual fidelity. The most extensive survey of sex in America found that “a vast majority [of heterosexual married couples] are faithful while the marriage is intact.”99 The survey further found that 94 percent of married people and 75 percent of cohabiting people had only one partner in the prior year.100 In contrast, long-term sexual fidelity is rare among GLB couples, particularly among gay males. Even during the coupling period, many gay men do not expect monogamy. A lesbian critic of gay males notes that:

    “After a period of optimism about the longrange potential of gay men’s one-on-one relationships, gay magazines are starting to acknowledge the more relaxed standards operating here, with recent articles celebrating the bigger bang of sex with strangers or proposing ‘monogamy without fidelity’-the latest Orwellian formulation to excuse having your cake and eating it too.”101

    Gay men’s sexual practices appear to be consistent with the concept of “monogamy without fidelity.” Astudy of gay men attending circuit parties showed that 46 percent were coupled, that is, they claimed to have a “primary partner.” Twenty-seven percent of the men with primary partners “had multiple sex partners (oral or anal) during their most recent circuit party weekend . . . .”102 For gay men, sex outside the primary relationship is ubiquitous even during the first year. Gay men reportedly have sex with someone other than their partner in 66 percent of relationships within the first year, rising to approximately 90 percent if the relationship endures over five years.103 And the average gay or lesbian relationship is short lived. In one study, only 15 percent of gay men and 17.3 percent of lesbians had relationships that lasted more than three years.104 Thus, the studies reflect very little long-term monogamy in GLB relationships.

    The homosexual perspective is this: they view monogamy solely as being married to one person, and fidelity as social, not sexual fidelity. This goes completely contrary to the law of chastity (which is the point of this whole wicked agenda) that we cleave unto our wife and unto none else.

    In the section on promiscuity, the author says,

    Gay author Gabriel Rotello notes the perspective of many gays that “Gay liberation was founded . . . on a ‘sexual brotherhood of promiscuity,’ and any abandonment of that promiscuity would amount to a ‘communal betrayal of gargantuan proportions.'”4

    This is, as I understand it, the spiritual principle behind it. Gays that “come out of the closet” are “liberated” and enter into a brotherhood, indeed. “Sexual brotherhood of promiscuity” is the appropriate name for it. This liberation is akin, of course, to Cain’s declaration that he was now free after he had spilled his brother’s blood. In the same sense, all these men and woman are free, from God’s redeeming graces. Having crossed the line God drew in the sand, they could now partake of all manner of wickedness with abandon and rejoice in their works for a season. And everyone in the “brotherhood,” like the members of a secret combination, are expected to freely partake of the works of their society, which they deem to be “good.”

  93. The following article accords so much with my own experience growing up in extremely close proximity to 3 gay male couples and what I learned about their lifestyles.

    An Open Secret: The Truth About Gay Male Couples

    William Aaron’s autobiographical book Straight draws similar conclusions:

    In the gay life, fidelity is almost impossible. Since part of the compulsion of homosexuality seems to be a need on the part of the homophile to “absorb” masculinity from his sexual partners, he must be constantly on the lookout for [new partners]. Constantly the most successful homophile “marriages” are those where there is an agreement between the two to have affairs on the side while maintaining the semblance of permanence in their living arrangement. [p. 208]

    He concludes:

    Gay life is most typical and works best when sexual contacts are impersonal and even anonymous. As a group the homosexuals I have known seem far more preoccupied with sex than heterosexuals are, and far more likely to think of a good sex life as many partners under many exciting circumstances. [p.209]

    Emphasis on Sexuality

    One writer – who, it should be mentioned, strongly sympathizes with the gay community about the stresses of social discrimination – observes conditions among gay men as follows:

    It must be remembered that in the gay world the only real criterion of value is physical attractiveness… The young homosexual will find that his homosexual brothers usually only care for him as a sexual object. Although they may invite him out to dinner and give him a place to stay, when they have satisfied their sexual interest in him, they will likely forget about his existence and his own personal needs….Since the sole criterion of value in the homosexual world is physical attractiveness, being young and handsome in gay life is like being a millionaire in a community where wealth is the only criterion of value. [Hoffman 1968, pp. 58, 153, 155]

    So, although I understand the appeal of the idea of the sexually exclusive same-sex couple, engaging in the same exclusivity norms the law of chastity calls for, this is just a myth or fiction, painted by those promoting SSM, to try to make it appear the same as married couples, in order to gain acceptance among the masses. It is in no way, shape or form the truth.

    The article is so spot on, from its accurate description of “you do me, then I do you” instead of mutual enjoyment and experience, to the objectification of gay men, to the apparent parallels homosexual practices have with addiction.

  94. Btw, I found that article through scholar.google.com but it comes from the ChurchMilitant.TV web site, a Catholic video news program. They also have a video on homosexuality:

    The transcript of this program is found here:

    http://www.churchmilitant.tv/scripts/ciax-2012-14-15.pdf

  95. Inasmuch as what same-gender couples are doing are like the physical sex only, swinging, non-fidelitous free-for-all described in these articles — then I agree they’re an abomination and a sin.

    I just disagree on what’s making it an abomination — is it the swinging, wanton sexual behavior, or is it the fact that it’s two members of the same gender? That’s what I haven’t decided for myself.

    I’ve noticed that these articles always seem to focus only on male-male same-gender relationships. I wonder why that is? They seem to use “homosexual” or “gay” in a similar one-sided manner as others who will only use “polygamy” to mean plural wives [as though women with same-gender attractions don’t exist]. I wonder if these authors think female-female relationships are just as lustfully-driven and unrestrained as the male-male ones they’re describing? Or if they think there actually is something about men only?

    Personally, methinks that these authors are personally disgusted by the idea of two men being sexual — and so they associate their feelings of disgust with moral abhorrence, which [neurologically-speaking] is a well documented phenomenon in other contexts [that of processing personal disgust as moral objectionability in the brain, conflating the two].

  96. I can’t speak for the secular articles, but from a biblical perspective, I think it is because the sexual laws deal with controlling what is done with a penis, not a vagina. Perhaps it is because of the active role men take in sex. A penis must engorge with blood, becoming erect, an “activation” of sorts, and then enter and exit an orifice in order to have sex, an active part to play, whereas the female can have a more passive role. So the laws of God regulate the male role and organ. Also, the man is representative of God, in the sense that God is the sower of the good seed, and it is man, not women, that sow seed (semen). So that seed is what creates life, or causes the material (the egg) to start the process. The reverse cannot be said to be true. An egg doesn’t create life from sperm. An egg doesn’t act, but is acted upon. So procreation is entirely a male procession. Females do not procreate, only males do. This is why the scriptures always speak of men begetting children, not women begetting anyone.

    The purpose of the penis, although it has many functions, is primarily to get that seed to its intended source, hence the tube-like shape and length. Everything else is auxiliary to that, to support that primary function. Although married people do all sorts of things in the bedroom, they also and possibly chiefly do procreative acts. (No one can see into the bedrooms of everyone, so one can’t know for sure. But based on the nature of women, procreative sex likely makes up the lion’s share of sexual relations between married people.) Homosexual behavior, though, completely severs the intended primary function of the penis, so that no procreation can occur. They do every conceivable sexual thing with their bodies, except God’s ordained procreative act.

    Again, the nature of women is such that it is procreative acts that they crave, not any other type of sexual activity. This is because of the feeling of union and mutual enjoyment it brings them. Oral sex, anal sex, and all the rest are not likely routines in normal adult life. However, due to pornography being so widely used among the population, among even young ages, many people are experimenting with non-procreative acts, or insisting that their partners engage in them. But again, it is not in the nature of women to crave or desire anything other than procreative sex. So, this influence possibly comes from pornography use, which causes people to be curious and experiment.

    Pornography, though, is largely based upon gay sex. Now, I know you don’t like that term, but gay sex can be defined as any sexual act that gays can perform amongst themselves. And gays can perform everything, except procreative sex. Thus, straight sex can be defined as procreative sex and gay sex as everything but procreative sex.

    Now, with these terms and definitions in mind, (which terms and definitions I just invented), the pornography industry is largely based upon gay sex, not straight sex. This is because even in porn that shows penile-vaginal penetration, it is almost always interrupted, to get the “money shot”. Procreative sex is almost completely absent from porn. So, porn takes, as its chief pattern, gay sex.

    As homosexual behavior appears to be addictive, this may have something to do with pornography also being highly addictive. In other words, the same brain stimulation that occurs in porn addicts may also be occurring during homosexual behavior, because it all derives from the same source (gay) behavior. Speculation, I know, but there does appear to be a pattern.

    This reminds me of Playboy magazine, which was portrayed as the new, sexually liberated, heterosexual male, but was in reality based upon the homosexual male behaviors, unbeknownst to most heterosexual readers.

    Anyway, to answer your questions, my understanding is that it is both “the swinging, wanton sexual behavior” and also “the fact that it’s two members of the same gender” that makes it sinful. Which is why putting a veneer of marriage over it cannot take away its sinfulness. As a man my brother used to quote all the time once said, “You can’t polish a turd.” The sexual promiscuity is an outgrowth of homosexual behavior. It is its rotten fruit. Heterosexual unions tend to keep men faithful, because of the influence of women. Cut off the women from the relationship, and the men go sexually nuts. The lesbians end up with “the lesbian death bed” because of the “acted upon” nature of both women, and then end up seeking out other women and men, outside of their primary relationship. (They end up having sex with men to fulfill their craving for sexual union.) So, lesbianism produces the fruit of promiscuity, too. Only marriage has the necessary ingredients to keep men and women sexually faithful to each other.

    As far as personal disgust, that’s a hard one to call. I mean, the scriptures say that the sanctified cannot look upon sin save with abhorrence. To abhor is “to regard with extreme repugnance : loathe.” In other words, abhorrence is disgust. If homosexuality is a sin (and my understanding is that it is), then one should abhor it. Same goes with SSM if it is a sin, which I believe it is. But abhorrence is to be directed at the sin, not at the sinner. So, I suppose that might be a key to judging personal, as opposed to moral disgust.

  97. Since I mentioned the Catholic church above, I might as well mention the latest scandal they are going through, which deals with homosexual priests:

    Vatican ‘rent-boy’ prostitution ring exposed: ‘underage boys’ exploited

    It is interesting because one of the Cardinals back in April claimed that paedophilia was linked to homosexuality, not celibacy:

    Vatican attacked over cardinal’s claim of homosexuality and paedophilia link

    Also, then there is the recent revelation by the Pope that there is a “gay lobby” in the Vatican:

    Pope’s ‘gay lobby’ remarks stir up new storm of Vatican gossip

    We’ll see what comes of the police’s investigation, but it it turns out that the Vatican is filled with gay priests, I find their position against SSM to be curious.

  98. ” it is man, not women, that sow seed (semen)… This is why the scriptures always speak of men begetting children, not women begetting anyone. ”

    ” And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.
    16 Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children..”.

  99. This post was in the Top-5 most popular posts at Wheat and Tares over the last 30 days. I’m glad to see that because I think this is an important conversation for everyone to be having [both politically and theologically].

    I wasn’t going to address LDSA’s comment that:

    This is why the scriptures always speak of men begetting children, not women begetting anyone

    but since OWIW quoted it above — I guess I’ll say what I thought when I read that …

    I really don’t think that “this” was the reason why the scriptures describe children as being begotten by men [instead of being birthed by women] — it’s got all the more to do with the fact that [to the authors] women were simply nothing to be counted as noteworthy, which is why the Bible [in general] never depicts women as anything interesting in and of themselves.

    The Woman-figure is always written as an object whose acquisition signifies YHVH’s favor or a man’s political success [Genesis 24:14]. Women are considered the property of fathers, uncles, brothers, or husbands — and are used to cement relationships with YHVH or with other men [Genesis 34, 2 Samuel 13, and Judges 11].

    The story [especially in the OT] is always that a Male-line is being threatened by the complications of fertility and sexuality among women — because the foundation of patriarchy is the control over female sexuality [and thus a man’s paternity and property rights].

    The “scriptures always speak of men begetting children” simply because the patriarchal tribes of Judean sheep-herders were sexist enough to not consider women worth mentioning — and for no other reason.

  100. I have no desire to be contentious. I have simply been thinking about the passage about the seed of the woman for the last several months and I find it very interesting.

    It is interesting to me that the Bible says both man and woman have seed.

    I believe the primary priesthood function and responsibility of the female portion of mortal man is to “bring forth children”.

    Long standing tradition of the Jews is to focus on a persons genealogy through the mother.

    Some people think the reason for this is a simple as the fact that there is never any dispute who the mother is.

    I think it is deeper than that.

    I think it is related to the passage in discussion.

    There is an interesting post in the following url entitled “Why is Jewishness Matrilineal?” for anyone interested.

    http://www.chabad.org/library/article_cdo/aid/601092/jewish/Why-Is-Jewishness-Matrilineal.htm

    I have wondered why the Lord told Eve “in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children..”.

    Sorrow is not the same as physical pain.

    It has to do with emotional anxiety distress and disappointment.

    That is exactly what Eve felt when she next conceived and excitedly exclaimed that the man child Cain that she bore would hopefully be in the likeness of she and Adam, desiring to worship the only true God, and then found out that would not be the case.

    It makes me wonder if the tree of the knowledge of good and evil was actually code for the SEED bearing tree of good and evil intelligences.

    In other words, unlike the plants and animals that all reproduced offspring in their own likeness, Eve, the Mother of ALL living had the priesthood responsibility to bring all manner of spirit beings into the world for the opportunity for the plan to work, even some that were not in the likeness of Adam and Eve.

    Adam and Eve both needed to partake of the fruit in order to get seed in their bodies… differing kind of seeds in their bodies.

    This is possibly why she and Adam did not get the promise of categorically producing offspring in their own likeness.

    This is possibly why Adam and Eve were sterile and without seed in their bodies before partaking of the fruit

    The mystical attraction of human sexuality may well have been predicated upon the seed of the man and the seed of the woman being present in both bodies and desiring to physically unite.

    Prior to that, no covering was necessary for the naked body because no seed was present and therefore, no sexual attraction was present..

    Just some random speculation

  101. OWIW — I don’t think there’s contention here, it’s just that you happened to mention the very sentence I wanted to say something about but chose not to. So I put that out there.

    I quite like your “speculation” and think it’s interesting too.

    “And [man] begot [person]” seems to be a very-much one-sided perspective. Clearly a woman does the begetting at least as much as a man has ever done any begetting [if not obviously more so].

  102. Yes Justin, I think your point about a one-sided perspective is well taken.

    Anarchist, I just didn’t want you to think I was doing a hit and run scripture post that appears to present an opposing point, just for the sake of being contrary or contentious, it was simply a passage I had been thinking about recently.

    I figured you would probably have an interesting and possibly disruptive way of interpreting it to make it consistent with the points you were making as well as to entertain us with and provide another way of interpreting the passage..

  103. I figured you would probably have an interesting and possibly disruptive way of interpreting it to make it consistent with the points you were making as well as to entertain us with and provide another way of interpreting the passage..

    Lol. Very well, for your entertainment, I will say:

    Both men and women have seed, but only men sow seed. This is why the scriptures speak of both men and women having seed, and of only men betting. The word procreate means beget. (Look it up in a dictionary, you’ll see.) And beget means to bring forth as a father or sire, sire meaning a male progenitor or ancestor. These words are male-sided not because of sexism, although I’m not saying that the ancients were not sexist, but because the function of sowing human seed is masculine, not feminine. We retain this understanding to this very day in modern expressions such as, “sowing one’s wild oats.”

    The etymology of the word seed itself means to sow. So we have a noun that is derived from an action verb. And among its many shades of modern meaning, it can mean both semen or sperm, and also progeny or descendants. Thus we read in one passage of scripture,

    And Onan knew that the seed should not be his; and it came to pass, when he went in unto his brother’s wife, that he spilled it on the ground, lest that he should give seed to his brother.

    He obviously didn’t spill his descendants on the ground, so this is referring to seed as semen. So there is seed that sows or brings forth (semen) and seed that has already been sowed or brought forth (progeny). Women bring forth children by being sowed themselves by male semen. in other words, women bring forth, through birth, what was brought forth by the male semen. They never bring forth by insemination, but by being first inseminated. The male role is to plant the male seed in the fertile feminine soil, generating life. The life grows hidden in the feminine soil until it, like a plant, comes forth out of the soil and we can see it for the first time above the soil line. But the initial spark of life in the human plant itself is brought forth, or generated, by the man, not the woman. So, he starts the process by insemination and she finishes it by birth.

    The word procreate does not refer to the birth of the child, but to the generation of its life, that initial spark of life, which is performed by the male semen. This is why it is defined as beget, which is only applied to men, meaning that only men beget (or generate life by sowing male semen).

  104. ” Both men and women have seed”

    Thank you for that concession and acknowledgement Anarchist.

    I think it is really quite significant that both the man and woman have seed and that each type of seed is in need of the other kind (or half) of seed in order to reach fertilization and ultimate fulfillment.

    Human fertilization is the union of a human egg-seed and the human sperm-seed, the result of this union is the production of a zygote, or fertilized egg, initiating prenatal development

    While I appreciate your fixation on men being the “sowers of the seed”, and not women, I do not view the male-man and the female-man as being singular in the ultimate sense but rather as two parts to the same component working in unity.

    I see both of the parts they play as being a united effort of a being that is basically composite in nature.

    One of the reasons I bring up the fact that both men and women have seed has to do with the following definition of “seed” as being synonymous with “priesthood” as per the Book of Abraham.

    “And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse them that curse thee; and in thee (that is, in thy Priesthood) and in thy seed (that is, thy Priesthood), for I give unto thee a promise that this right shall continue in thee, and in thy seed after thee (that is to say, the literal seed, or the seed of the body) shall all the families of the earth be blessed, even with the blessings of the Gospel, which are the blessings of salvation, even of life eternal.”

    I personally think that God was speaking to both parts of Abraham in the above passage but even if one looks at Abraham and his eternal soul-mate Sarah as separate and singular, it is still deductive that if Abrahams seed is essentially synonymous with his priesthood, then Sarah’s seed would be synonymous with her priesthood.

    That would mean that both male and female are born with raw priesthood innately.

    Why is this important?

    In recent years there have been lots of chatter on LDS blogs and chat boards about women and the priesthood. And lots of speculation about if and when and how women get the priesthood
    .
    There is even a group of women in the church at this time vying to have the women ordained to the male priesthood.

    In my opinion, this is very misguided and shows a lack of understanding about female priesthood.

    I believe priesthood is innate in all human beings, male and female.

    Since men are primarily delegated the stewardship of administrative responsibilities, ordinances via the laying on of hands are utilized for the purpose of giving raw procreative priesthood the AUTHORITY to function in an administrative role.

    Since the priesthood role of women is to bring forth (and help raise) children, (and to nurture and heal, and teach, etc. etc.) no ordination to authority is necessary. They essentially come with the authority.

    Anyway, that is the second part of my random speculations pertaining to the first verse that I brought up.

    BTW

    I believe those men and women that can’t physically have children in mortality still have seeds of priesthood in their physical makeup so this speculation doesn’t have any implications regarding that.

  105. I personally think that God was speaking to both parts of Abraham in the above passage but even if one looks at Abraham and his eternal soul-mate Sarah as separate and singular, it is still deductive that if Abrahams seed is essentially synonymous with his priesthood, then Sarah’s seed would be synonymous with her priesthood.

    Since the priesthood lineage only followed with Isaac [who was Sarah’s son] — that promise really pertained to her, and not to Abraham. Only a child from her womb and seed would be the covenant child. Abraham’s seed also begat Ishmael by Hagar’s seed and womb — but the promise of the priesthood was not in that offspring and branch of Abraham’s seed.

    So it wasn’t Abraham’s child that the covenant followed — it was Sarah’s son.

  106. “the promise of the priesthood was not in that offspring and branch of Abraham’s seed”

    Actually, everyone that receives the Gospel is accounted the seed of Abraham

    “And I will bless them through thy name; for as many as receive this Gospel shall be called after thy name, and shall be accounted thy seed, and shall rise up and bless thee, as their father;
    11 And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse them that curse thee; and in thee (that is, in thy Priesthood) and in thy seed (that is, thy Priesthood), for I give unto thee a promise that this right shall continue in thee, and in thy seed after thee (that is to say, the literal seed, or the seed of the body) shall all the families of the earth be blessed, even with the blessings of the Gospel, which are the blessings of salvation, even of life eternal.”

  107. Doesn’t the OT make it clear that Ishmael was not and would not be the heir promised to Abraham — because he was not of the seed of Sarah, the covenant wife? I know I hear monogamists use that exegesis of the Genesis story all the time — i.e., that Abraham’s polygamy was an attempt to “go around” God and have a child with another woman because he feared that God could not fulfill his word with Sarah, instead of him trusting in faith that God could make Sarah have a child?

    Meaning that though Abraham tried to fulfill the promise using Hagar to have Ishmael — it simply wasn’t going down like that, and they had to wait for Isaac, the son of the promise — or the son of Sarah’s seed:

    for it is written
    that Abraham had two sons
    the one by a bondmaid
    the other by a freewoman
    but he who was of the bondwoman
    was born after the flesh
    but he of the freewoman was by promise
    […]
    now we
    brothers and sisters
    as Isaac was
    are the children of promise
    […]
    nevertheless
    what saith the scripture?

    cast out the bondwoman and her son
    for the son of the bondwoman
    shall not be heir
    with the son of the freewoman

    (Galatians 4)

    Isaac’s maternity ended up being more important than his paternity — because the same paternity certainly got Ishmael nowhere fast.

  108. HEARKEN unto me, ye that follow after righteousness. Look unto the rock from whence ye are hewn, and to the hole of the pit from whence ye are digged.
    2 Look unto Abraham, your father, and unto Sarah, she that bare you; for I called him alone, and blessed him. 2 Nephi 7:9 Isa 51:2

    But thou, Israel, art my servant, Jacob whom I have chosen, the seed of Abraham my friend.
    9 Thou whom I have taken from the ends of the earth, and called thee from the chief men thereof, and said unto thee, Thou art my servant; I have chosen thee, and not cast thee away.
    Isa 49:8-9

    1 WHAT shall we say then that Abraham our father, as pertaining to the flesh, hath found?
    Rom 4 :1

    6 Therefore it is of faith, that it might be by grace; to the end the promise might be sure to all the seed; not to that only which is of the law, but to that also which is of the faith of Abraham; who is the father of us all,
    17 (As it is written, I have made thee a father of many nations,) before him whom he believed, even God, who quickeneth the dead, and calleth those things which be not as though they were.
    18 Who against hope believed in hope, that he might become the father of many nations, according to that which was spoken, So shall thy seed be. Rom 16:18

    22 Are they Hebrews? so am I. Are they Israelites? so am I. Are they the seed of Abraham? so am I. 2:cor 11:22

    For whoso is faithful unto the obtaining these two priesthoods of which I have spoken, and the magnifying their calling, are sanctified by the Spirit unto the renewing of their bodies.
    34 They become the sons of Moses and of Aaron and the seed of Abraham, and the church and kingdom, and the elect of God.
    35 And also all they who receive this priesthood receive me, saith the Lord;
    Section 84:33-35

    It’s been fun… going to bed

  109. Notice that you quoted scriptures which say:

    look unto Abraham
    your father
    and unto Sarah
    she that bare you

    for I called him alone
    and blessed him

    2 Nephi 7:9 Isa 51:2

    but thou
    Israel
    art my servant
    Jacob
    whom I have chosen

    the seed of Abraham
    my friend

    In the first one — Abraham being “your father” wasn’t enough, it required that Sarah be “she that bore you”. Abraham’s seed isn’t what set that nation/tribe apart [because Ishmael was of his seed] — the promise was unto the child that Sarah would bare.

    The second one follows the lineage to Jacob/Israel — who was the son of Isaac. The tribe of Ishmael’s son was not named here as God’s servant and chosen one. And he was of “Abraham’s seed” just as much as Jacob was. But the difference was that Jacob arose from the seed of Isaac, who was the offspring of Sarah.

  110. I was looking at the Mormon Wiki’s entry on “Same Sex Marriage” and it says this:

    The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is officially opposed to Same Sex Marriage.[1] The Church’s stance on this issue is guided by basic principles and teachings of the church…

    LDS teachings declare that “God has commanded that the sacred powers of procreation are to be employed only between man and woman, lawfully wedded as husband and wife” and further that “Children are entitled to birth within the bonds of matrimony, and to be reared by a father and a mother.”[2]

    The Wiki quotes from The Family: A Proclamation to the World.

    The wording in the first quote is interesting because it assumes that “the sacred powers of procreation” can be employed in ways other than between a man and a woman, for why make the statement that God has commanded that these powers be employed only between a man a woman if it was impossible to use them in any other way? This statement only makes sense if the procreative powers are one-sided, meaning that either the man possesses them apart from the woman, and/or the woman possesses them apart from the man.

    I explained above that procreation is a masculine act. The man employs the powers of procreation by sowing his semen seed, which, if employed with (sown in) a fertile woman, may result in progeny seed. With that perspective in mind, the quoted statement above makes a bit more sense and rules out male homosexual sex. However, it does permit sex between women, (unless one also believes that a woman also possesses the procreative powers apart from men, which view I don’t subscribe to.) The additional qualification of “lawfully wedded as husband and wife” would presumably preclude artificial insemination between a donor and a recipient who are not married to each other, as well as all sexual relations between persons not married to each other.

    The second quote seems to suggest that children have a right (entitlement = rights) to be raised by a male father and female mother. Both these quotes, given in 1995, undermine the case for homosexual behavior being right before God if it is practiced with sexual fidelity within SSM and also the case for adoption by gay parents, as well as artificial insemination by a donor to a gay couple.

    This Mormon Wiki entry shows a historical timeline of legislation both prohibiting and allowing SSM, and of particular interest is California, which passed Proposition 22 in 2000, banning SSM, which was overturned by the California Supreme Court. Then in 2008, Proposition 8 passed, an amendment to the California Constitution that defined marriage as between a man and a woman. As we know, this was deemed unconstitutional by another court, it went to the the federal Supreme Court and was denied standing. The pattern in all of this is exceedingly plain to see. Here is a quote from the Wiki that brings up some interesting points:

    In November, 2009, citizens of the State of Maine overturned the state legislature’s decision to allow gay marriage. Gay marriage has now lost in every single state — 31 in all — in which it has been put to a popular vote. Gays had hoped for success in Maine, since New England has been the most liberal region in the U.S. regarding gay marriage. The outcome marked the first time voters had rejected a gay-marriage law enacted by a legislature. When Californians put a stop to same-sex marriage a year ago, it was in response to a court ruling, not legislation. Five other states have legalized gay marriage —starting with Massachusetts in 2004, and followed by Vermont, New Hampshire, Connecticut and Iowa — but all did so through legislation or court rulings, not by popular vote. In contrast, constitutional amendments banning gay marriage have been approved in all 30 states where they have been on the ballot.

    The entry is old and does not appear to have been updated since 2009, but the patterns were seen even back then. As an update, according to the Wikipedia entry on “Same-sex marriage in the United States“,

    On November 6, 2012, Maine, Maryland, and Washington became the first states to legalize same-sex marriage through popular vote.

    Nevetheless, despite the people of these three states essentially saying by their vote, “let this sin be upon us!”, everywhere else we see the democratic process (the will of the people) being subverted by the courts. In other words, the divine right principle has once again shown its ugly head, but this time it has been claimed by the judges.

  111. One more thing, concerning the reason for all this judicial subversion instead of just trusting in democracy and letting the people decide the issue based on the merits, or lack thereof, of SSM: the propaganda being circulated among the people that SSM is inevitable does not appear to me to be prophetically correct. I get the feeling that the current SSM-favorable environment among the people is going to change and that this is why these subversive methods are being used, to push the agenda through quickly, getting it forced upon the people, through court interventions, before the conditions among men drastically change and popular opinion turns very much against SSM. People can change their minds rather quickly and I think those in the know are aware of this fact, so trusting the people to choose SSM for themselves is not the first and best option, because they are liable to choose “wrong.”

    I still see all this fuzzily, but I will say this: all the doomsday predictions concerning societal upheavals due to SSM being legalized everywhere presuppose its victory and homogenization among all the states. I do not see that future. Not because it doesn’t have potential, but because I cannot (prophetically) see SSM establishing itself everywhere. When I try to imagine that future, it all seems wrong. I have no confidence in that coming to pass. So, I cannot see SSM affecting all of society. A portion of society, yes; all of it, no. To what, then, is SSM dangerous? To the Mormon church. That’s all I see. Our church is the principal target and will be the principal casualty. Yet I still cannot connect these dots.

  112. Minnesota’s New Same-Sex Marriage Law

    The law does not exempt individuals, businesses, nonprofits, or the secular business activities of religious entities from non-discrimination laws based on religious beliefs regarding same-sex marriage.

    Therefore, a business that provides wedding services such as cake decorating, wedding planning or catering services may not deny services to a same-sex couple who is planning a wedding based on their sexual orientation.

    To do so would violate protections for sexual orientation laid out in the Minnesota Human Rights Act. The individuals denied services could file a claim with the Minnesota Department of Human Rights against the entity that discriminated against them.

    And so it begins…

  113. This statement [from The Family proclamation] only makes sense if the procreative powers are one-sided, meaning that either the man possesses them apart from the woman, and/or the woman possesses them apart from the man.

    C’mon now — you came up with a quote from a Officially Published Policy Document, and that statement decides whether procreative powers are one-sided or not and which gender possesses them?

    It’s not unreasonable to interpret their use of the term “sacred powers of procreation” to be the genitals, and more specifically the sex act [the hormones, the emotions, the arousal, stimulation, and the orgasm, etc.].

    The powers, within the bodies of all people, that give rise to these things are only to be explored and engaged in by a married man+woman — that’s what I take that sentence to mean.

    I think that trying to argue a one-sided view on “Procreation Power” is about as futile as asking which is more essential for a cup — its inside or its outside.

    Remember that in the metaphor of the Word as seed and the Heart as soil — the seed had no power on its own, but was used in the parable because the state of the heart-soil would determine the future success of the word-seed.

  114. Substituting the word “genitals” in place of “sacred powers of procreation” makes the sentence work just fine, too. Genitals, are, in fact, one-sided, the man possessing his apart from the woman and the woman possessing hers apart from the man, which is what these “sacred powers of procreation” must be in order for there to be a command that they only be used between a man and a woman.

    In other words, if it is impossible to employ “the sacred powers of procreation” in any way other than between a man or a woman, meaning that employment of “the sacred powers of procreation” requires man+woman, then there is no way to break the commandment, and thus there is no need for the commandment. But because there is a commandment, it means that these powers are one-sided: either split between the two, or held by one only.

    As for “the sex act,” we might ask, “What sex act? Are all sex acts procreative? What makes a sex act procreative?” “The hormones, the emotions, the arousal, stimulation, and the orgasm,” etc, none of these potential aspects of the sex act are necessarily procreative, are they?

    This distinction must be made, and indeed is made by the church in disciplinary councils, between sexual acts and procreative acts. Not all sexual acts are procreative, and it is procreative acts outside of the bonds of holy matrimony that the church teaches and rules against. So the question must be asked and answered.

    Likening the procreative powers to the inside and outside of a cup, though, doesn’t work. A cup is a thing that just sits there until acted upon. Power is, by definition, agency, or power to act and not to be acted upon. So the procreative powers must be something that acts on something else. Although both are necessary (that which acts and that which is acted upon), the action is one sided, done by that which acts. So when referring to a procreative power, we must look at whatever is doing the action.

    The parable of the sower is also split into He that acts (the sower) and the soil that is initially acted upon, or initially refuses to be acted upon, by the Sower, and then, once the seed is planted, the seed further acts upon the soil, if the soil continues to let it. The Sower and His seed are both that which acts and the soil is that which is acted upon or that which refuses to be acted upon.

    This parable shows, then, the oppositional nature of the Universe. In like manner we can view the procreative act as unidirectional, one side acting on another side. Doing so allows us to understand why the scriptures are silent about lesbian relations but speak against male gay sex. These laws are regulating the use of the penis, which holds the sacred powers of procreation. Thus we get all the phallic symbolism of the past, the king’s scepter of power, the rod of iron leading to the tree of life, etc.

    None of this diminishes the feminine role, but there is a distinct division, the male having the procreative role (the initial spark of life) and the female the nurturing role, nurturing what has been generated in her womb, until it bursts from her soil.

  115. Likening the procreative powers to the inside and outside of a cup

    I wasn’t saying that procreative powers were what was “like a cup” — I’m saying arguing in circles about what is obviously an example of complementary-difference between male-powers and female-powers is like arguing about which is more important in the total function of the cup, its insides or its outsides. Because when have you ever seen a cup with insides [to hold the liquid] without there being outsides to contain them? And how could there be outsides without there being the insides they wrap around? The two exist simultaneously and exist because of each other — or they don’t exist at all.

    Yes — there’s a one-sided perspective one can take towards male-penis-power. It’s always based in the Sky-Father, out-there spirituality of nomadic peoples. And it’s just as easy to craft a one-sided, female-womb-power. These are always based in the Earth-Mother, in-here spirituality of agrarian/foraging peoples.

    So, the scriptures are silent about lesbian relations but speak against male-on-male sex, assume the penis alone holds the sacred powers of procreation, and uses phallic symbolism of power for the same reason they speak of “men” begetting children and not women: the patriarchal tribes of Judean sheep-herders were sexist enough to not consider women worth mentioning or having any worthwhile roles — and for no other reason.

    In the way you’ve defined homosexuality — you’ve said that:

    These laws are regulating the use of the penis

    But they don’t regulate the penis — or at least don’t regulate it near as much as they regulate the behavior of women and their wombs. Adultery is defined from the perspective of a woman’s behavior. Judah sleeps with Tamar disguised as a prostitute and no one bats an eyelash — but their they’re quite ready to stone Tamar for being pregnant. Etc. etc.

    Your trying to define a spiritual biology based on what people who considered women to be physical property owned by a man wrote about sex. If patriarchal cultures [who’ve given us the three big monotheistic religions] so clearly invest all the procreative power in the male — then why are they so concerned with women and what they do, where they go, how they dress, what’s covering their hair, etc.? Sounds to me like they know there’s power in women and they don’t understand it — and they fear it and have spent thousands of years attempting to control it.

  116. ” Judah sleeps with Tamar disguised as a prostitute and no one bats an eyelash — but their quite ready to stone Tamar for being pregnant. Etc. etc.”

    LOL

    I think this is a profound point and it reminds me of the woman caught in adultery in the NT that was brought to be judged…. where was the man? Why wasn’t he brought to be judged?

    It is almost as if man is expected to recklessly spread his seed where ever and whenever he can but the woman is given the burden of responsibility with regard to morality.. and ultimately the bringing forth of children..

  117. Oh no — did I actually misspell “they’re” as “their”?

    … I did. I need to fix that.

  118. It is kind of hard to comment on biblical pre-Mosaic law, since we don’t know much of anything about it, but it appears that prostitution was legal at that time and in that society, so no one batted an eye at either the john or the prostitute. Tamar’s apparent transgression was not promiscuity but adultery, for she was promised to Shelah yet Judah had not fulfilled his promise. Judah had caused her to commit adultery (indirectly and also directly) by not fulfilling his promise. So, that passage shows the righteousness of Tamar.

    Adultery appears to have always been a crime with steep penalties attached to it, both for the man and the woman. Adultery was spoken in terms of a married woman (her status) because that was the only way to speak of it, for men apparently did not typically take a vow of exclusivity when they got married, unlike today. So, the married woman became the standard for judging what was, and was not, adultery. (Now men take marriage vows, so now we get what is written in D&C 132 about adultery.)

    Married women, as soil (land), were expected to remain faithful to their sowers (their husbands). Unmarried women were also “land,” wild land, that no sower owned, and as such, they could rent out to various sowers for a time in prostitution, as they chose and was agreed upon. But the married women gave up that right when they entered into matrimony. The men could own more than one piece of land (more than one woman) and so it was not expected that he be exclusive, for he was expected to sow and to prosper “in the land” and to increase his stewardship.

    The woman, then, had two legal sexual statuses to choose from: prostitute or wife. One was with many men, renting out for a time, the other permanently bound to one with sexual exclusivity. The man, on the other hand, could be a john, renting “land” to sow for a time, or a husband, responsible for the upkeep and constant sowing of “land” that he possessed as a stewardship. To the prostitutes he had no such responsibility, except insofar as the agreed upon payment was concerned, although we probably can surmise that pre-Mosaic law also contained provisions for taking her to wife if she got pregnant.

    It must be understood that prior to Moses, the tribes of Israel received their laws from or through Abraham. Our D&C 132 is Abrahamic law, or that given to Abraham from God. Although the law given to Adam (“a man shall cleave unto his wife and to none other”) does not allow prostitution in any form, later on we find legalized prostitution, indicating that God did the same kinds of things He did among the Nephites, namely, modifying by expanding or reducing His given laws from time to time, as He did through Lehi, Nephi, Mosiah and later Christ Himself. So, the law of Judah’s time was probably that given through Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.

    As all things are to be brought together in one, it is to be expected that the full Abrahamic laws will be given in due time, including, perhaps, the allowances for legal prostitution. Thus we read in D&C 132, “I will reveal more unto you, hereafter”. But what we have in our canon, from the various laws given in the various dispensations, indicates that a separation of roles between the sexes was/is always part of the revelation.

    The gospel of Jesus Christ (the more excellent law) is based upon these same role divisions. Feminists and others like to denounce all of this as sexism, painting it as evil and something to be abolished, but sexism merely means:

    1 : prejudice or discrimination based on sex; especially : discrimination against women
    2 : behavior, conditions, or attitudes that foster stereotypes of social roles based on sex

    If you look at the gospel of Jesus Christ, not the Mosaic law, sexism is still there. The gospel discriminates based on sex. A couple of modern examples are the male priesthood orders or the female Relief Society. The gospel also has behaviors, conditions or attitudes that foster stereotypes of social roles based on sex. For example, who can argue that D&C 132 isn’t sexist, where each sex is assigned a role and women are spoken of as belonging to their husbands? The question, then, is where does the sexism come from, from man and their customs or revealed from God? The philosophies of men would say it is all man-based and culture-based and so they seek to remove or diminish the roles and distinctions. Thus, patriarchy is vilified. But patriarchy is a revealed principle, first given by God, who calls Himself our Father, even the first Patriarch.

    Again, these man-made philosophical strategies to equalize the sexes in every respect, removing the distinctions and roles that the gospel itself gives, are inspired of the evil one, as I explained in a comment above somewhere. There is gospel equality, and then there is equality as a philosophy of man or doctrine of the devil. Unfortunately, the same word “equality” is used in all these systems, so it is easy to get them mixed up and call all promoted equality as inspired of God.

    Anyway, getting back to your statement:

    Adultery is defined from the perspective of a woman’s behavior.

    The law of chastity is given as a commandment to the men: leave father and mother, marry a wife, cleave to her and to none else, and love her with all your heart. That regulates the penis. The commandment against of adultery is likewise given as a commandment to the men, regulating the penis:

    Thou shalt love thy wife with all thy heart, and shalt cleave unto her and none else. And he that looketh upon a woman to lust after her shall deny the faith, and shall not have the Spirit; and if he repents not he shall be cast out.

    Thou shalt not commit adultery; and he that committeth adultery, and repenteth not, shall be cast out. But he that has committed adultery and repents with all his heart, and forsaketh it, and doeth it no more, thou shalt forgive; but if he doeth it again, he shall not be forgiven, but shall be cast out.

    Adultery itself is defined in terms of a woman’s status, not her behavior. It is not the sex act that makes it sinful, but her marital status (her state of exclusivity).

    So the revealed religion given through Joseph is just as patriarchal and sexist and penis-regulatory as the revealed religion given through ancient prophets. If we assume, as the feminists and other philosophies of men do, that the sexism in the word of God is solely a product of the culture the revelation was given in, then what basis do we have in saying that the other elements of the “revelations” were not also man-made or man-inspired? Why stop at sexism? The sexism line is arbitrarily drawn, because everyone has bought into the idea that it is evil. But once that premise is accepted, so that we can toss that part of the word of God aside, the line can be moved to include the entire canon, so that we must abolish all “the word of God,” which, according to our new view, is really the word of some men. And inevitably, these doubts lead to a total rejection of revealed religion.

    Now, of course it is possible to pervert revealed religion, so that it becomes extreme, and thus you get the nitpicking you described or the endless rules established by the Pharisees, but throwing out the revealed baby with the bathwater is not the wisest course of action. Revealed patriarchy is good and should be supported and promoted, whereas patriarchal perversion should be fought and eliminated. In like manner, revealed marriage is good and should be supported and promoted, whereas the same-sex marriage perversion (my new descriptive term for it) should be denounced and eliminated.

  119. Btw, the relevant quote from that link I gave was the following:

    Legal prostitution in the Bible reflects the New Testament era’s cultural double standard that while a wife must be faithful, a Hebrew man can have sex with an unmarried prostitute, or any other single woman, and not be committing adultery. But if the woman is a wife (in other words owned by her husband) under the patriarchal system of the Hebrews, then both she and her sexual partners are adulterers – a crime for which the penalty is death (Lev 20:10; Deut. 22:22). “A married man who consorted with prostitutes was not committing ‘adultery.’ In Mesopotamia as in many other places and times, as has been well established, adultery resulted only if the female partner was married to a third party; a married woman who had sexual relations with a man other than her husband as denying the husband his exclusive sexual and reproductive access.” (Faraone, 24)

    Today, condemnation of prostitution reflects our culture’s double standard that a woman who sells sex is morally bankrupt, while a man who buys sex is simply just fulfilling sexual urges. This double standard also implies that sexual satisfaction is something men are entitled to. In the New Testament era, as long as it did not compromise a man’s honor, prostitution was seen as a normal activity. “Prostitution was a legal and highly visible practice on the streets of ancient cities, and patronizing prostitutes was not necessarily stigmatized – as long as it did not involve squandering one’s patrimony.” (Faraone, 11)

  120. The idea of man as “sower” and woman as “land,” which I think is supported by the scriptures–thus we speak of both women and land as “barren” and men and seeds as “sterile”–shows another reason why SSMP doesn’t make any sense. Two sowers brought together produces nothing. Same with two parcels of un-sown land. They remain barren. There is no purpose for two sowers to be “married,” nor two parcels of land. Double the seed produces nothing without land to plant in, and double the amount of land produces nothing without any seed being planted in it. This is a key to discern that SSMP is not ordained of God. God could not have created this thing.

    Wherefore, it must needs have been created for a thing of naught; wherefore there would have been no purpose in the end of its creation. Wherefore, this thing must needs destroy the wisdom of God and his eternal purposes, and also the power, and the mercy, and the justice of God.

    In like manner, SSMP is “a thing of naught,” created for no other purpose than to “destroy the wisdom of God and his eternal purposes, and also the power, and the mercy, and the justice of God.” This should give us a clue as to who is inspiring men to promote, establish and accept it.

  121. Here is another thought. The GEMTAM has purpose because, although it binds two sowers together, it does so through jointly sowed land, in a joint stewardship. The United Firm, later called the United Order, is a covenant between men, just as SSMP can be an agreement between two men, but unlike the latter, the covenant deals with the upkeep and prosperity of land (women) and fruit (children). In other words, regardless of whether it is called a United Firm, concerned with the mercantile establishments–producing funds, creating industry, acquiring lands and building upon those lands (improvements), in other words, concerned with the temporal needs of the church–or a United Order, concerned with the same, or a polyandrous GEMTAM union, the result is the same: sowers covenant to work together on and to improve the land (either literal land or the figurative land that is woman.) It is the land that gives the sowers purpose. Land improvement and the hoped-for fruit of one’s labor is what it is all about. When you remove land from the equation, so that two sowers agree to work together, we get a selfish enterprise, one that benefits the sowers and no one else, making it, essentially, a business partnership. The same goes for two “landladies” bound together in SSMP. The United Firm was different from the standard business models because it was established to benefit the church, not just the men involved, (as well as other reasons).

  122. I just think there’s more for society to value in marriage unions than your “sower-land”, “fruit-producing” analogy. Theologically, I can see how,

    This is a key to discern that [same-gender marriage] is not ordained of God. God could not have created this thing.

    and could justify such a position by the scriptures for myself.

    I just don’t see any good reason to impose [legally] that view on those whose feelings and experiences differ from my heterosexual ones — especially when there’s positive things of value for society that they can embody, that would make it worth giving them the same legal recognition and benefits that we give to hetero-, monogamous marriages.

    And I think the same thing about polygynous and polyandrous marriages [that they’re useful outside the context of men getting women pregnant], even though Christians [who would side with you on same-gender marriage] would be against those marriages to the same degree that both them and you are against same-gender marriages [and they’re against them for many of the same reasons: e.g., God said it’s Adam and Eve not Adam and Brian and Peter and Eve — Adam and Eve not Adam and Eve and Carol and Diane — Adam and Eve not Adam and Steve — Adam and Eve not Laura and Eve].

  123. Okay, so I attempted to show (theologically) that SSM is actually SSMP and thus wickedness, to demonstrate why no LDS ought to support it politically and that, in fact, we have a duty to denounce and oppose its legal recognition and promotion. I did this because our laws actually do concern themselves with wickedness, or legislating against them. Thus, we have laws against lying, murder, theft, etc. Should the state say, at any point, that theft is legal, that doesn’t change the wrongness of theft. All that does is institutionalize it, or give it “legitimacy” since the strong-arm of the state is now behind it, both in its defense and promotion. In other words, if theft were legal, and someone complained about it, they might be accused of violating the thief’s “civil right” to steal, and thus be brought up on charges. This is why it is very important that any state laws that venture into morality, conform to the word of God. If a law legislates wickedness, making it legal to perform wickedness, this will have two effects. First, it will normalize it among the society, so that the previous taboos about stealing will more easily be discarded and theft will inevitably go up. Secondly, the Lord will send prophets, testifying of the people’s wickedness, saying that they are stealing, (which is now legal to do), and this will incite the wrath of the people against those prophets, leading to their deaths, or attempts to kill them, for they “speak against the law”. This is the pattern of the scriptures, seen pretty much everywhere.

    Institutionalized wickedness, meaning that wickedness has become legal, inevitably brings forth prophets of God denouncing the wickedness, which inevitably brings forth attempts to silence the prophets, openly or secretly, and, when those prophets are killed by the people or their rulers, legally or illegally, this inevitably brings forth the wrath of God on that people and destruction quickly follows.

    If SSM is actually SSMP, and thus wickedness, a latter-day saint cannot view this issue merely politically, because we have a duty to God to oppose all wickedness, for the pattern will follow to its inevitable conclusion. Our duty is to do whatever is in our power to save the people from temporal and spiritual destruction, not to hasten their demise, nor should we set up the circumstances in which prophets of God will be slaughtered.

    Lehi testified against the people and they wanted to kill him. How much you wanna bet that wickedness had been institutionalized at that point and they were incensed that he was preaching against their laws and their “political” rights? Alma and Amulek preached in Ammonihah and they wanted to kill them. Why? Because they said they reviled against their laws, which had already institutionalized wickedness. Those women and children they burned in the pit were burned legally. The jugdes had power, they said, to do the same thing to Alma and Amulek. What power? Legal power, according to the voice of the people. Thus, Alma and Amulek were law-breakers. Abinadi, sent to testify against the people of king Noah made people angry. They had institutionalized wickedness and he preached against it, and they burned him at the stake. After the laws became corrupt, as told in the book of Helaman, again prophets were sent and killed, for wickedness was now legal, so how dare a prophet seek to take away a civil right?

    This same pattern will repeat itself among the Gentiles, if we allow them to institutionalize wickedness. So this is a BIG deal, which is why the church leadership were inspired to encourage the people to oppose it.

    So, if I have failed to show theologically that SSM is SSMP, then what is left are only political reasons, which the various talking heads on either side have covered quite extensively. As an anarchist, I care little about the politics of the issue, although it seems apparent the state has no interest, whatsoever, in SSMP, and in fact, SSMP goes against both state and societal interests.

    As as aside, concerning the societal issues, I just read an essay called, Same-Sex Parenting: Child Abuse? It made me recall my own childhood, in which there were, among my group of young friends, double parent homes and also, in the minority, single parents. The children with single parents looked upon those with a mother and a father in the same home with envy. In other words, they were truly stressed about it. Children naturally want what other children have, such as toys, etc., but no kid with two parents wanted to have only a single parent. Only the reverse was true. So, if children are raised with same-sex parents, I imagine that the same dynamic will be present, a child longing for a father but having two mothers, or a child longing for a mother but having two fathers. The fact of having two fathers or two mothers might create an even greater stress on children.

  124. Okay, so I attempted to show (theologically) that SSM is actually SSMP and thus wickedness, to demonstrate why no LDS ought to support it politically and that, in fact, we have a duty to denounce and oppose its legal recognition and promotion.

    I see your point. If same-gender marriage is actually a morally-perverse living situation for human-beings — then recognizing it with legal benefits would make God “upset”.

    But I think of stuff like gambling or prostitution or drug abuse [which I think are unholy practices] — and I’m all for them being legalized and allowing consenting adults to do what they want, with the only threshold being where it infringes on my own rights to do the same. In that sense — I’d put SSMP in the same category as gambling, prostitution, or drug abuse [but not murder, theft, or perjury].

    But I guess that gets us back to the point that the problem is being “married” is something entirely different than having a state-issued, recognized “marriage license” for your marriage. It’s presently legal for any couple to cohabitate, be sexually active, and maintain a life-long fidelitous relationship — you can choose to call yourselves “married” [if you like] or not [if you like].

    So — maybe now I’ll say that I’m not for the “legalization of same-gender marriage”, as much as I’m for the “delegalization of all marriage”. Then the church would be free to teach marriage as it sees fit, and solemnize/seal marriages as it sees fit — and other religions and non-religous persons would be just as free to do with “marriage” as they see fit [solemnizing and recognizing relationships among their own, according to the criteria they accept].

    To quote myself from the OP:

    Obviously, the solution to many of these problems is ejecting the State out of our home, family, romantic, and sex lives. We have such a problem because, with the power of civil benefits, the State is seen as legitimizing what relationships matter and which ones don’t.

    The church should be at the forefront of getting the State and Marriage divorced because we [with all other Abrahamic religions] believe that humans were gathered into families prior to the establishment of civil governments. Whether a couple is considered married “in the eyes of God” or not can have nothing to do with a State-issued license. Thus, a good first step in this direction would be to no longer require a marriage license to perform religious services like for-time marriages and eternal family sealings.

    I don’t so much as want same-gender couples to have the same legal relationship I have — as much as I want none of us to have a legal relationship with the state.

  125. Since I mentioned that child abuse article, I also ought to mention another by the same author, called, Growing Up With Two Moms: The Untold Children’s View. In this latter article, he mentions Mark Regnerus’ “New Family Structures Study” (NFSS) that was published last year, which came under criticism. (See the Wikipedia entry on the Witherspoon Institute for more on this controversy.) Robert Lopez, the author of the article, defends the Regnerus study, since he grew up with two moms and his own experiences and also conversations with others who also were raised by a same-sex couple corroborates the results of the study. That study can be read here:

    How different are the adult children of parents who have same-sex relationships? Findings from the New Family Structures Study

  126. Gambling, though, has no scriptural proscription (that I know of.) Prostitution, well, after that comment I wrote above, a case for its “approval” by God might be made. (My mom doesn’t read this blog so I can say that.) And drug use (or abuse), again, there is no scriptural proscription, except the nebulous “moderation in all things.” So, although you and others hold these things as unholy practices, I’m not sure they are on the same footing as the topic of this post. Nevertheless, strictly speaking from a state’s interest perspective, it is in the interest of the state to at least regulate these “unholy” practices, or outlaw them altogether.

    It’s presently legal for any couple to cohabitate…

    I’ve heard that in Utah they actually have laws against cohabitation.

    …be sexually active…

    Each state has laws on the books regulating what sexual activity is legal, and what is illegal, even among married couples. SCOTUS invalidated all the sodomy laws recently, but they still remain on the books in some states. (See the Wikipedia entry, Sodomy laws in the United States.)

    These laws, and the SCOTUS ruling (and there have been two SCOTUS rulings, one supporting the sodomy laws, given in 1986, and one throwing them out, given in 2003, reversing the previous opinion), bring up the question of just what is right and proper for the law to regulate.

    the only threshold being where it infringes on my own rights to do the same

    I think that position is perfectly fine to take for any legislation procedure that will not have a detrimental effect on society as a whole. But if something, if enacted into law, will not affect you personally, but will turn a paradise into a gutter, because it brings with it a slew of unlegislated attachments, because of its very nature, then there must be two views or filters: does it harm me and mine or infringe upon our rights? and does it promote the greater good or contribute to its demise? In other words, there ought to be a double filter in place and every measure needs to pass both filters, not just one. If something infringes on people’s rights, that’s a fail. If it contributes to degeneration of society, it’s a fail. If it builds society, but infringes on people’s rights, or if it upholds people’s rights, but degenerates society, both cases would be a fail.

    We might look at this as a division in rights, between individual rights and societal rights, or group rights. Neither type can morally infringe upon the other type, otherwise tyranny results.

    This particular issue is interesting in that both sides have argued from the rights position (those for it argue in support of the couple’s civil rights, while those against argue that the couple has no such civil right and that the children’s rights are being and will be infringed upon) and also from the societal effect position, the one side saying it will be beneficial, the other detrimental. Even theologically, those using the Bible come on opposite sides of the issue. (I have not heard latter-day saints appeal to non-biblical, Mormon scriptures to support their for- or against- positions, other than myself, so I don’t know if two positions are possible from the strictly Mormon scripture perspective. You know what I came up with, but perhaps some other Mormon can come up with a contrary view using only the Triple Combination.) This is truly one of the most divisive topics of our day.

    Even your solution, which is also my solution, namely, “delegalization of all marriage,” is contested by all. Neither those who are for, nor those who are against, want to delegalize marriage. And the Brethren of the church are completely silent on that option, for some odd reason.

  127. I suppose I ought to offer some scriptural evidence to support the claim that the Jews had institutionalized wickedness at the time of Lehi’s prophecy. Although we don’t have a fullness of the scriptures, what we do have shows that they cast the righteous prophet of the Lord, Jeremiah, into prison. Under what authority? It may have been legal authority, because he had broken some corrupt law.

    Also, regarding legalized prostitution being a potential restoration principle, if the King Noah and the Redemption of Zion post has any truth to it, the fact that Noah and his priests institutionalized harlotry among the people might be evidence that it was, at one time, a gospel-authorized principle, and that he and his priests, at least, believed it needed to be restored, in order for the Restoration to be complete.

  128. marriage is to support the family . sex is for reproduction . same sex marriage is illogical . …….

  129. Lol — anon — unless you only copulate like a wild animal by restricting yourself just to the ovulatory times when conception is most probable and avoid intercourse at all other times and you plan on being celibate after menopause and you refrain from any form of non-vaginal intercourse [e.g., oral sex, anal sex, or mutual masturbation] — then saying that human beings having sex is “for reproduction” is illogical [and frankly quite boring and bland sounding].

    Humans are the one species for whom the sentence “sex is for reproduction” is simply not true. People say homosexuality is “unnatural” [which is strange to hear because the inclination is present in nature], but if you ask me — your saying that humans having sex is just for reproduction is what’s really unnatural.

  130. I was reading Moses 5 today and I came across Moses 5:42, which reads:

    And Cain knew his wife, and she conceived and bare Enoch, and he also begat many sons and daughters.

    The verb “to know” here means, “to have sexual commerce with.”

    Nine verses later, in Moses 5:51, it uses the word “knew” and I have always in my mind switched the meaning of “to know” for this verse to the more conventional meaning of “to recognize by recollection, remembrance, representation or description.” But with Justin’s post in mind, I thought I’d substitute the sexual commerce meaning and here is what came out:

    For, from the days of Cain, there was a secret combination, and their works were in the dark, and they knew [had sexual commerce with] every man his brother.

    Wherefore the Lord cursed Lamech, and his house, and all them that had covenanted with Satan; for they kept not the commandments of God, and it displeased God, and he ministered not unto them, and their works were abominations, and began to spread among all the sons of men. And it was among the sons of men.

    I thought it was an interesting rendering, given that I have heard that the secret combination of today uses sexual perversion as an initiation rite, to completely corrupt the individual. Also, I thought that the textual emphasis that this was among the sons (not daughters) of men, implying a condemnation of male (not female) gay sex, was funny. Obviously, I am not saying that this is the meaning of these verses. It was just such a funny rendering, I had to write it down somewhere.

  131. I also feel that the above interpretation is exactly what was meant by the passage.

    As you stated, many of the secret societies of today incorporate sexual perversion in their initiation rites.

  132. Makes sense –as far as I know, using anal sex to show domination or to inflict humiliation on either conquered groups or initiates has been common among such groups for quite some time. Just like the men of Sodom wanting to “know” those foreign visitors of Lot.

  133. More on the “beget” thing: In that scripture I cited,

    And Cain knew his wife, and she conceived and bare Enoch, and he also begat many sons and daughters.

    The text shows the scriptural gender difference. Whereas Cain begat Enoch, Cain’s wife bare him.

    I’ve already covered the meaning of “to beget” and why it refers to the masculine role, but “to bare” means:

    To strip off the covering; to make naked; as, to bare the breast.

    “Bare” is the word used throughout the scriptures when referring to women giving birth to a child. Men beget children and women bare them. So the one speaks of the initial spark that occurs in the darkness of the womb and the other speaks of when the hidden child is brought into view, through birth.

    This doesn’t really have much application to the topic of marriage equality, but I just wanted to be thorough…

    On another related topic, I have a question for you, Justin. The Nephite laws had a punishment affixed to adultery. (Adultery was a crime just as murder, robbing, stealing or telling a lie were crimes.) What do you make of the laws that regulate human sexuality? Are they unjust, meaning do they violate the human rights of consenting adults? Or is adultery a special case? In other words, is it just that adultery be regulated and punished, but unjust for fornication to be punished by the law? Or are all regulations of sexual relations between consenting adults a violation of their rights?

  134. To put my questions in some context, consider the following article:

    Mass. among 23 states where adultery is a crime, but rarely prosecuted

    and a pertinent quote:

    Most states have purged their codes of laws regulating cohabitation, homosexual sodomy, and fornication — sex between unmarried adults — especially after the 2003 Supreme Court decision in Lawrence v. Texas that made sexual activity by consenting adults in private legal across the country. But the question of how that ruling affects adultery remains unanswered because others may be harmed by adultery — a spouse and children. Several courts have alluded to the constitutionality of adultery laws since the Lawrence decision.

    But Melissa Murray, a University of California Berkeley law professor, said she thought ‘‘most courts in light of Lawrence are going to give adultery a wide berth.’’ She added: ‘‘It is an open question whether adultery continues to be viable as criminal law even though it remains on the books.”

  135. What do you make of the laws that regulate human sexuality? Are they unjust, meaning do they violate the human rights of consenting adults? Or is adultery a special case? In other words, is it just that adultery be regulated and punished, but unjust for fornication to be punished by the law? Or are all regulations of sexual relations between consenting adults a violation of their rights?

    I can see the value in regulating adultery because those are non-faithful sexual relations. A marriage relationship is based on pair-bonding and fidelity. It’s adultery [not laws against it, or the lack of them] that violates the human rights of consenting adults because the marriage partner who’s getting cheated-on didn’t have a say-so in the adultery [that’s what makes it “adultery”].

    Adultery is akin to contract violations [which we prosecute when people infringe on one of the conditions or terms]. So — it’s morally wrong and it’s civilly wrong — or, in other words, it’s wrong for purely objective, moral, “right-and-wrong” reasons and it’s wrong for objective civil, sociological, or purely humanistic reasons that have nothing to do with a religious source of one’s morality.

    And while I personally consider fornication to be a moral evil [consenting adults having sexual relations without a marriage relationship to keep them together] — I don’t think it’s wrong to the same extent [as compared to adultery] for objective civil, sociological, or purely humanistic reasons that have nothing to do with a religious source of one’s morality.

    And even if I were going to go ahead and make a case using objective civil/humanistic morals and reasons to give full-legal support for promoting committed sexual ethics [against fornication, as well as adultery] — I would say that it’s “healthy” and “good” for adults to practice committed sexual ethics, and it’s “unhealthy” and “bad” for them to engage in wanton/unrestrained sexual behavior.

    And I’d say that committed sexual partnerships [for either gay or straight folks] is “healthy” when they’re associated with fidelity, cooperation, commitment, service, intimacy, fellowship, emotional fulfillment, and companionship — and the state could [without regard for a person’s particular/unique religious belief] promote such marriage relationships with their civil recognition, privileges, and benefits — without needing them to be either hetero- or monogamous.

  136. Here are some statistics I came across concerning the effects that SSMP has on societies that implement it.

    What happens to marriage and families when the law recognises “Same-Sex Marriage”?

    Compelling statistics from European countries where same-sex marriage is legalized. Gives specific examples on the negative effects of same-sex marriage. From the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children.

    I got that link and description off of this website: The Negative Effects of Same-sex Marriages (Updated 7/9/2013)

    A summary of their conclusions on the statistics can also be found here: News, Same-sex ‘marriage’ has negative effects, shows latest evidence

    In particular, marriage statistics for Spain show an uptrend prior to implementation of SSMP in 2005 and then an immediate drastic decline for all the years afterward. See: Gay Marriage and the Effect on Heterosexual Marriage

    I’ve spent time in Spain and am well aware of the youth, young adult and party culture. According to some friends that I made there, it appears that same-gender sexual experimentation is on the rise. I wonder if there is any correlation to the implementation of SSMP?

  137. The first link in the above comment has a couple of interesting items that I’d like to quote, which show what the actual agenda is.

    6. In the move to same sex marriage, opposite sex relationships have to conform to gay norms, rather than vice versa, since matters pertaining to complementary sexes cannot apply to those of the same sex. For example: Spanish birth certificates record ‘progenitor A’ and ‘progenitor B’ rather than ‘mother’ and ‘father’. In Canada, the concept of natural parent has been erased from law – for every child and every couple – with court rulings that children could have three parents. Sweden has also moved to eliminate the words ‘boy’ and ‘girl’ in return for one neutral word.

    This is to move the masses in the direction of Satanic equality, which I expounded upon somewhat in a comment above, in which there are no more distinctions between male and female, nor any of the God-ordained roles.

    13. Experience with same sex partnerships/marriage tends to bear out claims that availability or the ‘right’ is all and participation more or less irrelevant to sexual minorities. There is little or no difference in take-up between ‘marriage’ and registered partnerships. In places that have one or both and significant numbers of homosexuals, there has been no groundswell.

    From the beginning, the debate over marriage has not necessarily hinged on its popularity among the eligible, with advocates of same sex unions insisting that “equality” was not a numerical proposition. It is the mere existence of a right to marry which is important, irrespective of whether anyone partakes of it or not. This has tended to be ignored by naïve heterosexual supporters, who believe they are speaking for reticent homosexuals desperate to share in a heterosexual privilege.

    Participation in heterosexual norms is not part of the agenda. The only objective is to transfigure the ordinance. The law of chastity isn’t separate from marriage. Marriage is a specific part of that law. If you change marriage, you change the law of chastity, or transfigure it. The agenda in to undermine and eventually completely overthrow the law of chastity, since it is God-ordained, meaning that it is, or was given by, the word of God. The plan is to transfigure the word of God, in all things, which necessitates a perversion of all the ordinances and that all the set limits and bounds that God has prescribed be passed. So, marriage must be likewise transfigured. It doesn’t matter that hardly any homosexuals will actually participate in SSMP. There is no need for them all to participate in order to change marriage, except for just a few of them in order to present a facade to the public of normalcy, legitimacy and conformity to the heterosexual norm of sexual fidelity, in order that the public more easily and willingly accepts the perversion. Once SSMP is legalized, marriage can be more readily controlled, corrupted and eliminated from society. This is according to the devil’s plan to destroy the law of chastity so that he can eventually altogether prevent spirits from coming down, effectively frustrating God’s plan. SSMP is only one tool at his disposal. Transhumanism and other technologies will also be forced on the populace, to more fully “equalize the sexes” and homogenize the masses.

    The data in the paper concerning the Scandinavian states and their anti-family laws is alarming but extensive, so I won’t quote it, except for these summaries:

    39. In the feedback loop, either:

    ‘Gay’ marriage is the end game of long running anti-marriage and family policy – typified by Sweden. Cohabitation and out-of-wedlock birth rates were rising and marriage rates were falling in Scandinavia long before the enactment of homosexual partnership/marriage laws. These trends are explicable in terms of the removal or reduction of incentives to marry by forces hostile to traditional conjugality. Same sex partnership/marriage then locks in and reinforces existing trends toward the separation of marriage and parenthood.

    Or:

    Gay marriage initiates the severance and dismemberment of marriage and family in more family friendly societies, such as Spain and the Netherlands. There is free-fall towards the Scandinavian model – driving “home the message that marriage itself is outdated, and that virtually any ‘family form’, is acceptable.” Either which way, same sex marriage is more a terminus for marriage or ultimate act of
    dissolution, rather than a force for revival.

    I find the author’s description of SSMP as an “ultimate act of dissolution” interesting since I myself described it in a comment above as a form of divorce. SSMP has nothing to do with homosexuals and their right to marry. That is merely the lie spread around. Its real purpose is to more fully undermine heterosexual marriage as a God-given ordinance.

    40. Education. Everywhere, the remaking of the sexes has been inseparable from an aggressive policy to equalize ‘sexualities’ within the context of its overriding ethos that expert elites possess a superior knowledge of how best people should live. In Sweden, the National Academy for Education conducted an extensive review of school material and schools were ordered to ‘integrate gender equality and sexual orientation issues into their operations and everyday tasks. Research is meant to focus upon how ‘norms and attitudes make homophobia possible’ even where there are ‘no statistics or consistent studies which can pinpoint discrimination due to sexual orientation’, and making what might be considered offensive statements about homosexuality merit a prison term.

    41. Spreading the practice. There is the suggestion of a big, recent rise in sex ever or recently with a same sex partner and LGB-identities in the Netherlands. Same for Massachusettes. This is, of course, seen elsewhere where there are homosexual endorsing and promoting curricula in schools, but it is likely to increase with same-sex marriage. This has massive health implications.

    42. Other institutions. Churches in the UK might be better protected from hostile litigation if the established church’s legal obligation to marry any eligible persons in England and Wales was ended, or the rights of any religious bodies to conduct marriages were taken away – as in Sweden. Some clearly hope that compulsion to perform same sex weddings will sever church and state and further push Christianity out of the public arena and, therefore, consciousness. Undermined and stigmatized for their unreasonableness and prejudice, the moral authority of religious institutions will further retreat in favour of a narrow secular ideology, particularly as sexual behaviour at odds with traditional norms is further encouraged and advanced.

    Even without these statistics, it is clear to see that the states will educate the masses and their children that homosexual behavior is acceptable, legitimate and desirable, and that experimentation is perfectly normal and okay and to be encouraged. It is plain (to me, at least) to see this perversion spreading or increasing, through the indoctrination of children, if not among the already established heterosexual, adult society, and more especially among the females of society. (Thus lesbianism has become fashionable or en vogue in certain circles.) And the churches are, without a doubt, prime targets, either by corrupting them or stigmatizing them.

    What I find particularly interesting, though, about these statistics, is that the seed of Abraham, through Ishmael, is posing a huge problem for this agenda, because the Muslims have a strong strain of patriarchy and sense of family, and naturally resist these encroachments and attempts to destroy both patriarchy and family. Muslim patriarchy is, I think, even stronger than Gentile Christian patriarchy, and so poses a major obstacle to the devilish plan, which seeks to eradicate all traces of divine patriarchy. (It also seeks to eliminate divine matriarchy, but it is patriarchy that has the strength and will to fight back, so it becomes the prime target.) So, it seems like the Lord is using the Muslims (who don’t even believe that Jesus is the Son of God) to further His purposes, because the Gentiles, who profess Christ, have rejected many of His laws, swallowed the devil’s lies and emasculated themselves before the forces of the evil one.

  138. Justin,

    Getting back to the questions about the state making laws that regulate human sexuality, you wrote,

    I can see the value in regulating adultery because those are non-faithful sexual relations.

    But what definition of adultery should be settled on? The monogamist, polyginist, polyandrist and GEMTAM tribalist all have different definitions of adultery. For a law to regulate adultery, it must first define adultery, right? But by doing so, wouldn’t it trample upon the rights of one or more of these people, depending on which definition it chose? For example, if it takes the monogamist’s view, then the polygynist is committing adultery when he takes a second wife. If it takes the polygynist’s view, then the woman in monogamy cannot appeal to the law and accuse her husband of adultery when he takes another wife. And so on and so forth.

    So, before adultery can be defined, must not marriage itself be defined? And if the state defines marriage, does not it do the very same thing, all over again, trampling on the rights of people? If it defines it as monogamy, then the polygamists’ rights are infringed, etc.

    How, then, does one define adultery, or, for that matter, marriage? Is not both adultery and marriage defined according to the practices and attitudes of those who enter into marriage? In other words, is not legal marriage defined as monogamy solely because almost all marriages in this country have been monogamous marriages, and thus adultery has been defined in terms of monogamy? Now, I’m not saying that this is so, I’m actually asking the question. But if this is true, then is it not also true that marriage has been defined in heterosexual terms because almost all marriages in this country have been heterosexual? And still are, I might add, both monogamous and heterosexual. So, if that is the legal precedent, and I’m not saying that that is the legal precedent, but if it is, would not seeking to change marriage into polygamy infringe upon the rights of the monogamous majority, or seeking to change marriage into SSMP infringe upon the rights of the heterosexual majority?

    In other words, although it is true that it is wrong for a majority to infringe upon the rights of a minority, it is equally wrong for a minority to infringe upon the rights of a majority. In fact, the case can be made that it would be a greater wrong, since more people’s rights are being infringed upon.

    So, one must ask the question, is the majority having their rights infringed upon? Or, put another way, does the majority have the right to define both marriage and adultery? Now, we know what SCOTUS has said on this issue, namely that the definition of marriage is a state’s issue, decided by each state, meaning by the people of each state, hence we get different marriage laws from state to state.

    That being true, how can SSMP be a civil rights issue, if according to the law, it is the majority that is to decide the issue, or write the definition? If it is the prerogative of the majority of each state to define marriage, surely only the majority rights can be infringed upon, since the minority have no right to decide. Do you get my drift? (I am not sure if I’m writing this thought out clearly enough.)

    To put it in latter-day saint terms, in the council in heaven, when we chose to follow the Savior or Lucifer, and one-third sided with Lucifer (a minority), while two-thirds sided with Jehovah (a majority), the plan was enacted by the majority. Did this violate the rights of the minority? No, for it was to be decided by a majority decision. Had the minority risen up against the majority after the vote and sought to stop the plan after it was decided to go through, that would have infringed upon the rights of the majority to decide the issue, would it not? And that is exactly what went down, for Satan rose up in rebellion after not having been chosen by the majority, for the which rebellion he and his followers were cast down.

    Is not the SSMP issue essentially the same majority-minority principle? If so, then there is nothing wrong with marriage being defined by the majority as between a man and a woman. This does not violate the rights of the minority, does it? But if the majority chose to define marriage traditionally, meaning heterosexually, such as was done with Prop 8 in California, and then a minority threw the vote out, say through judges, would that not infringe upon the rights of the majority?

  139. Do you get my drift? (I am not sure if I’m writing this thought out clearly enough.)

    Yeah — the questions were in-depth, but I think I followed. In re: to how adultery gets defined [to monogamists define it, or all heterosexuals, or who?] — I don’t see the problem in having it defined as a violation of the marriage agreement you entered into. If you and your partner entered into a marriage as monogamists — and then you decided to seek either another sexual partner or another spouse, then you’ve violated your marriage covenant with them.

    As I said — it’s not having laws against adultery [or not having any laws against it] that violates the human rights of consenting adults because adultery is a case of a marriage partner getting cheated on — since the marriage partner who’s getting cheated-on didn’t have a say-so in the adultery [and that’s the very fact that makes it “adultery”].

    I think fornication is another matter though [when we’re talking about legal sanctions against it] because people can be fornicators all the while respecting the consent of all parties that participate/are involved. And while I don’t mind the state arbitrating matters such as breaches of the terms of agreed-upon, freely-entered-into contracts [as in adultery] — I don’t like to see legal proscriptions against “stupid” behaviors [things like swinging sex, drug use, prostitution, gambling, seat-belt laws, etc.].

    And so I think, at most, same-gender relationships fit that category. You can argue that God doesn’t recognize their union — but the fact is that outside of your religious reality-tunnell that you are looking through — there’s no objective difference in their relationship that would make me say the state ought to withhold from them the same legal-recognition that is afforded to heterosexual couples [and polygamous couples, for that matter, too].

  140. In re: to how adultery gets defined [to monogamists define it, or all heterosexuals, or who?] — I don’t see the problem in having it defined as a violation of the marriage agreement you entered into. If you and your partner entered into a marriage as monogamists — and then you decided to seek either another sexual partner or another spouse, then you’ve violated your marriage covenant with them.

    But wouldn’t that be unequal application of the law?

    I’m a monogamist. If I am with another woman, I commit adultery and can be thrown into jail.

    You are a polygamist, if you are with another woman, you don’t commit adultery and the law has no hold on you.

    Does the law decide the definition of adultery in these cases? No, the couple decides and tells the law what their agreement originally was: monogamy or polygamy. But that runs into problems, because if the wife says she agreed to only polygamy and the husband says he agreed to polygamy, who is to be believed? The law becomes of none effect, his word against hers.

    There is also the possibility of a couple starting out monogamous and later choosing polygamy, but agreeing amongst themselves to make the change, and then one changing his or her mind later and accusing of adultery. Marriage is not contractual, like normal contracts. It flows and ebbs from moment to moment, all of which is legitimate marriage.

    Only if there is some written contract with terms of monogamy or polygamy or whatever, or a spoken agreement with witnesses, could the law lay hold on adultery. Yet it hardly ever has any written, or even stated terms, either, so to have the law applied this way is to make it powerless and according to the whims of those involved. Which would make it unequally applied.

    The only way to equally apply a law against adultery is to legally define it beforehand, by the legislators, not by the couple, according to some fixed standard, and then judge the couple’s actions by the legally defined definition, not by the definition they, themselves, made up or make up on the spot. In other words, your “variable-meaning adultery definition,” according to the terms of the marriage arrangement, must also have a “fixed-meaning adultery definition” in case the terms cannot be properly ascertained.

    Unless a standard is fixed, application must, of necessity, be unequal. In the two cases above, who can say that the application of the law is not unfair? The acts are precisely the same, being with a woman who is not your spouse, but for the one there is a penalty and for the other there is no penalty.

    If we apply these same principles to marriage and SSMP, we get another inequality, for the law does not call them, nor treat them the same. The benefits given are the same, and the use of the word “marriage” is the same, but that is where the similarities end. Everything else is completely different. If we take just one aspect of marriage which makes it of legal effect, consummation, we run into a major problem right away. Can two lesbians consummate their union? Can two gay men? How about two heterosexuals, a man and a woman, who do not engage in penile-vaginal penetration? If that never occurs, in other words, if they do everything but that, is their marriage consummated?

    In marriage, the pronouncement is often as “man and wife,” yet this cannot be done in SSMP. And the list of specific differences goes on and on, showing that SSMP creates an unequal application of the marriage laws. To do away with these inequalities, changes are made to heterosexual marriage to conform to SSMP standards! (As I mentioned above.) But even all the legal word changes cannot change the dissimilar natures of the two things.

    So, my question to you is, given that the law must, of necessity, define its terms, why is it wrong for it to define it in terms of the heterosexual, monogamous, majority, given that according to the Supreme Court, the States have the right and jurisdiction to define these terms? Since it is the majority that has the right of decision, why do you still say that the 2% or so of the population that are homosexuals are having their rights infringed upon by not being allowed to engage in legally sanctioned SSMP? Do you still believe they have a civil right to legally sanctioned SSMP? Or even, do you believe that people have a civil right to legally sanctioned plural marriage? If you still say that SSMP is a civil right, then are all those States that prohibit SSMP violating civil rights and if so, why did SCOTUS uphold those laws? Do the majority have the civil right to decide this issue? What is your opinion on this?

  141. Marriage is not contractual, like normal contracts.

    There’s a reason that the Chronicle Project renders the commandment in Exodus 20 “thou shalt not commit adultery” as “thou shalt not break your authority vows”. So the contract language is indeed fitting.

    Since adultery is about breaking your vows/not keeping your word — if there’s a law against it, then it’s not unreasonable to say that the legal language should reflect the fact that what we want to discourage is people breaking their marriage vows — which any person does when they’re sexually-active with someone who’s not their spouse and which any monogamist does when they attempt to take another spouse.

    In Methods of Scriptural Interpretation — I brought up this particular issue [that of nailing down a statuatory definition for adultery.

    The Scriptural Example of Adultery:
    Many directives in the scriptures seem cut-and-dry at first glance. Take:

    thou shalt not commit adultery

    as an example. What seems straight-forward can be really quite vague as we start to look into applying this “statute” to specific cases. For example:

    Alice is in an “open relationship” with Barry. Both she and Barry have agreed to allow the other to seek extra-marital sexual partners for one-time flings – given that consent is granted prior to any intercourse. Alice has had sexual relations with men other than Barry [her only husband], but she has always sought and obtained his permission for each of the encounters.

    Barry [from the above example; married to Alice] has had some sexual relations with women other than Alice [his only wife], but maintains that – based on the original meaning of the Hebrew word na’aph – a man is not able to commit adultery.

    Connor is married to two women. Both know about the polygynous arrangement and both consented to it and find joy in it. Connor engages in sexual relations with both women separately.

    Darren is Christian. Though he is married to only one woman and has only had sexual relations with his wife, he has imagined lust in his right-brain-heart towards other women. Jesus Christ said:

    But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart.

    Earl is Catholic. Though he is married to only one woman and has not imagined lust in his right-brain-heart towards other women, he has imagined lust in his right-brain-heart towards his wife. According to Pope John Paul II:

    Adultery “in the heart” is committed not only because man “looks” in this way at a woman who is not his wife, but precisely because he looks at a woman in this way. Even if he looked in this way at the woman who is his wife, he could likewise commit adultery “in his heart”.

    Who in this group committed adultery – which did not? For what reasons did that person commit or not commit adultery?

    Answering these specific cases suddenly reveals how vague a simple command of “thou shalt not commit adultery” can really be. Am I bound by what adultery would have meant to Moses when he wrote it – or by what the church currently interprets “adultery” to entail – or by what my wife and I have agreed would violate the terms of our marriage covenant?

    So how would you answer those? Especially given what the Chronicle Project wrote about the original meaning of the Hebrew word na’aph [which I didn’t know about when I wrote that post] my opinion would be that “adultery” violates what my wife and I have agreed would violate the terms of our marriage covenant.

    And I don’t see how defining it as: “violates what a couple have agreed would violate the terms of their marriage covenant” [in gender neutral language] does anything to my “rights as the majority” as compared to having it defined from a masculine perspective, “violates what my wife and I have agreed would violate the terms of our marriage covenant”.

    In general, I don’t see how gender neutral language on legal documents [the Spouse#1 and Spouse#2 on marriage licenses or Parent #1 and Parent#2 on birth certificates, etc.] infringes in any way upon my “rights as the majority” as a heterosexual man.

    I mean — to claim that same-gender couples can’t consummate their relationship because they both have vaginas or they both have penises shows a heteronormative bias — as though penises going into vaginas is capable of magically “consummating” anything.

    So, my question to you is, given that the law must, of necessity, define its terms, why is it wrong for it to define it in terms of the heterosexual, monogamous, majority, given that according to the Supreme Court, the States have the right and jurisdiction to define these terms?

    Firstly — as it relates to the SCOTUS cases on marriage equality, I think the interpretation is clearly that the court is “punting” on the issue and choosing not to address the difficult issues that the cases are raising. And that’s whether or not the 2-3% of people who are affectionately-oriented towards members of the same-gender should have access to the same legal recognition of their pair-bonding relationships as we currently grant heterosexual couples.

    Personally — methinks they should have equal access to legal marriages and see no good reason why they shouldn’t. Admittedly, things like the cake decorators and photographs being sued from not wanting to participate in a same-gender marriage are not right [in my mind] because while I think people have a right to civil marriages, I don’t think they have a right to goods and services provided by a private company.

    And I don’t see how changing the marriage license to read “Partner #1 and #2” or “Spouse #1 and #2” affects your or my marriage in any way. I’m still a husband to my wife even if our legal marriage license [which I don’t even know where ours is anyway] were to name my wife as “Partner 1” and me as “Partner 2”.

  142. Marriage is not contractual, like normal contracts.

    There’s a reason that the Chronicle Project renders the commandment in Exodus 20 “thou shalt not commit adultery” as “thou shalt not break your authority vows”. So the contract language is indeed fitting.

    Since adultery is about breaking your vows/not keeping your word — if there’s a law against it, then it’s not unreasonable to say that the legal language should reflect the fact that what we want to discourage is people breaking their marriage vows — which any person does when they’re sexually-active with someone who’s not their spouse and which any monogamist does when they attempt to take another spouse.

    If you look at the Wikipedia entry Jewish views on marriage, you will notice that the marriage contract was the betrothal, not the actual marriage. After betrothal (and before the marriage ceremony), adultery could be committed.

    The Gentile customs do not follow the Jewish ones. When we become engaged, which is the equivalent of betrothal, there is no legally binding contract. The man and the woman are free to disengage prior to the marriage, and no one considers that either adultery or divorce. Yet the law of God is based upon the Jewish customs, not the Gentile ones. Consider D&C 132:61,

    And again, as pertaining to the law of the priesthood—if any man espouse a virgin, and desire to espouse another, and the first give her consent, and if he espouse the second, and they are virgins, and have vowed to no other man, then is he justified; he cannot commit adultery for they are given unto him; for he cannot commit adultery with that that belongeth unto him and to no one else.

    “To espouse” means “to betroth.” Thus we see that the revealed laws of God we have were the same ones given to the ancients. But the Gentiles assign the contractual part of marriage to the marriage ceremony itself, instead of the betrothal. Yet there is no contract in our marriages, except insofar as vows are exchanged during the marriage ceremony. The Gentile betrothal process is not seen as a legally binding contract. The Jewish espousing, though, was a legally binding contract, hence the laws against adultery.

    This is why I say that marriage is not contractual, like normal contracts. That the Gentile law considers it a contract, is done out of necessity because of the Gentile customs, but every valid contract must have clearly stated terms, and there are none in Gentile marriages, except for whatever marital vows are stated during the ceremony. Nevertheless, an oath or a vow is different than a contract, agreement or covenant. The former is one-sided, regardless of what the other side does, whereas the latter is two-sided, each side bound to their agreement only insofar as the other party does not violate the terms that apply to them.

    In your Methods of Scriptural Interpretation, you were comparing apples to oranges when applying the Jewish scriptures to the Gentile marriage scenarios. In all of your scenarios, the focus is on the marriage, not the betrothal, whereas the Jewish scriptures were speaking of the betrothal, which actually was a contract. There was nothing vague about these laws. They were spelled out in black and white, so that the Jews would have no excuse that they couldn’t obey the commandments because they were too vague to understand.

    (SSMP seeks to make all things vague, with nothing in black and white, all things being nebulous, to conform to the whims of the day. But that is not how the Lord works.)

    Pope John Paul II’s words are contradicted by the words of the Lord Himself, who said that a man “cannot commit adultery with that that belongeth unto him and to no one else.” So, no, it is not the lust that makes it a sin, but the lusting after someone else’s wife. In other words, coveting what belongs to your neighbor, which is what one of the Ten Commandments speak against. “Looking on a woman,” then, does not mean “looking on a female,” but looking on a married woman, as opposed to a single maiden, who was not considered a woman until she was married, just as a male is not considered a man (a whole, or completed [consummated] man) until he is joined to a female. Consummation means “completion” because this is what it points to, the joining of male and female, making the complete man.

    my opinion would be that “adultery” violates what my wife and I have agreed would violate the terms of our marriage covenant.

    But what were the terms? Did you write down the terms, sign them, have them notarized and witnessed, or speak them before witnesses? In other words, was this an actual contract with actual stated terms, or merely something you are calling a “contract” and “terms” but which were never stated nor written down? If the latter, then that’s not really a contract, is it? And yet, that is what most Gentile marriages consist of. Although the law considers it a contract, in order to deal with it under the law, it’s really just a social status and a social union, not a contract, unless we are talking of the Jewish betrothals or of actual Gentile marriage contracts, such as prenuptial agreements.

    And I don’t see how defining it as: “violates what a couple have agreed would violate the terms of their marriage covenant” [in gender neutral language] does anything to my “rights as the majority” as compared to having it defined from a masculine perspective, “violates what my wife and I have agreed would violate the terms of our marriage covenant”.

    In general, I don’t see how gender neutral language on legal documents [the Spouse#1 and Spouse#2 on marriage licenses or Parent #1 and Parent#2 on birth certificates, etc.] infringes in any way upon my “rights as the majority” as a heterosexual man.

    You mean “as a heterosexual person,” for the designations of man and woman, male and female, will be phased out, too, in order to complete the obliteration of sexual differentiation, which is what the devilish doctrine of sexual equality is all about.

    The gender neutral language used in the expression, “violates what a couple have agreed would violate the terms of their marriage covenant” may be correct if “a couple” indicates a heterosexual couple, for such can marry or enter into a marriage covenant, but if it indicates a homosexual couple, it becomes a contradiction in terms. And that is the point, the gender specific language which has traditionally defined marriage as between a man and a woman poses an obstacle to this agenda, so the language must be changed in order to introduce the perversion. It is done on purpose, so that people can look at the law, see “couple” and be able to interpret it as “homosexual couple.” You cannot interpret “a man and his wife” as a homosexual couple. Just doesn’t work. These laws, which originate from God, were given in plainness and clarity, so that no one could err, in order to leave people without excuse. It is the devil’s work to confound, confuse, obfuscate, and make all things that are black and white into shades of grey, so that there is no more division, but a homogenized mass. I wrote on this topic on this post of the Times and Seasons blog a few days ago, but as I look over the comments, apparently they never took it out of moderation. I don’t want to write the whole thing again, but I’ll just say that the sword spoken of in that post is the division that God makes between the sheep and the goats, so that dissimilar people do not unite. Nehor’s doctrine was to bring the sheep and goats together in tolerance for wickedness, which would frustrate God’s planned division. There was more to it than that, but that’s all I’ll say about it.

    Your “rights as the majority” as a heterosexual man will be taken away as the gender neutral language is used because you will no longer be considered a heterosexual man, but a heterosexual person. As the gender neutral language begins to pervade, the rights and privileges of a mother will be phased out, as well as those of a father, husband, wife, son, daughter, male and female. This may seem preposterous to you, but this is what this is all about. If this movement is allowed to proceed unchecked, absolutely no one will have any rights or privileges as anything other than a human being, but even that distinction will be removed, so that human and animal rights will be one and the same thing. In other words, human beings will no longer be distinguished from the animals, and the differentiation of species will also be removed, as Darwin apparently pointed out in his On the Origin of Species. In other words, as noted by him, there is no such thing as “species,” since everything apparently comes from the same source. The doctrine, then, is to treat all things with equality, or equally, as the same stuff or thing, completely homogenized. The differentiation done by God is to be undone.

    I mean — to claim that same-gender couples can’t consummate their relationship because they both have vaginas or they both have penises shows a heteronormative bias — as though penises going into vaginas is capable of magically “consummating” anything.

    The redefinition of “marriage” must, of necessity, require the redefinition of everything else that pertains to it, including adultery, consummation, etc. So, the claim that same-gender couples can’t consummate their relationship is valid, since the historical definition of consummation precludes it from happening. Also, just as changing the historical definition of marriage will have wide effect, so will changing the historical definition of consummation. Equal application of the law must occur, not one standard for you and another standard for me. See the following:

    Same-sex marriage and consummation

    Opponents of gay marriage focus on tricky definition of consummation

    Gay marriage: some legal inequalities will remain

    Saying that the traditional definitions show a heteronormative bias is like saying that a sphere that says, “a cube cannot roll because it is not round,” is showing a spherical bias. Bias has nothing to do with it. These are just statements of fact. We can legally change the definition of a cube, and legally define it as round, but that doesn’t make it true.

    I don’t think you actually answered my question: “Why is it wrong for [the law] to define [marriage] in terms of the heterosexual, monogamous, majority,” given that the States (the people, or majority voice) have the right to define it this way?

    methinks they should have equal access to legal marriages and see no good reason why they shouldn’t.

    So, you believe that what is happening in the European countries as far as religions being forced to marry homosexuals and anti-discrimination laws being brought to bear upon any who oppose homosexual behavior, etc., you honestly believe that none of that can or will happen here? You cannot see beyond the present or see these repeating patterns? Have you spent any time at all in Europe or in other countries? It may be that you don’t have enough experience to read the writing on the wall, or know of the higher learning factories overseas that take girls and boys of faith and mold them into atheists. Since I already mentioned the country above, here are some more statistics on Spain:

    On 25 July 2007 the BBVA Foundation published their report Social portrait of Spanish people, which reported that 60% of Spain’s population support same-sex marriage. This support occurs mainly among the younger population, between 15 and 34 years old (75%), people with higher education (71%), people not attached to any religion (75.5%), and those identified by left and middle-left political views (71.9%). [Source.]

    Finally,

    And I don’t see how changing the marriage license to read “Partner #1 and #2″ or “Spouse #1 and #2″ affects your or my marriage in any way.

    Reacting to this or other issues only according to how it affects you, is not the gospel way. The gospel way is: “Every man seeking the interest of his neighbor, and doing all things with an eye single to the glory of God.” You should be rightly concerned whether a law will adversely affect you and your family, but you also ought to be concerned whether a law will adversely affect the lives and families of your neighbors. That also goes for, of course, your homosexual neighbors, which legalized SSMP will also adversely affect.

  143. That also goes for, of course, your homosexual neighbors, which legalized SSMP will also adversely affect.

    Let me elaborate a little on this point. The biblical scriptures condemning homosexual behavior can be interpreted, and often are, in various ways. You yourself said that you require additional revelation to make the assessment, one way or another. Let’s say then, for a moment, that there is an insufficiency in the scriptures to make that determination. There are three possibilities: homosexual behavior is always approved of God, homosexual behavior is never approved of God, or homosexual behavior is approved of God under certain circumstances (such as marriage) and not under others (such as pagan rituals.)

    If we promote SSMP, and it turns out homosexual behavior is always approved of God, then we have not contributed to the condemnation of anyone’s soul.

    If we promote SSMP, and it turns out that homosexual behavior is approved within “marriage,” then we again have not promoted iniquity.

    If we promote SSMP, and it turns out homosexual behavior is never approved of God, then we have legitimized iniquity, contributing to the condemnation of souls, or helping to cause people to sin.

    Now, is it wisdom to go forward in darkness and ignorance, not having a sufficiency of information, and possibly put at risk the souls of men, both those of the homosexual and as well as our own souls, by promoting a practice, the righteousness or wickedness of which we are unsure of?

    Or, does wisdom dictate that without sufficient information to go on, we must rely upon the information we do have and encourage all to partake of heterosexual marriage, which we do know is a commandment to all men, and not partake of a practice that may turn out to be wickedness, until we know for sure one way or another?

    Which course appears wiser to you?

  144. But what were the terms? Did you write down the terms, sign them, have them notarized and witnessed, or speak them before witnesses? In other words, was this an actual contract with actual stated terms, or merely something you are calling a “contract” and “terms” but which were never stated nor written down?

    No — my wife and I don’t have a written contract, signed and notarized, for our marriage. That’s not the point. It’s not presently illegal to commit adultery — so sure, no one does that. You had asked me what I thought about laws against adultery and fornication versus letting people have the freedom to commit sexual sins with consent. And that’s what I think. I think marriage terms should be made explicit [in whatever form is best suited for legal persons, e.g. notarized in writing] — and if violated, then the spouse that was cheated on could file charges of adultery.

    I will be Socratic with you for a moment, by answering:

    “Why is it wrong for [the law] to define [marriage] in terms of the heterosexual, monogamous, majority,”

    With a question — why was it wrong for the law to define marriage in terms of the same-race pairings majority in previous decades? I’d say it was wrong because it’s not right to withhold a legalized marriage recognition from people just because of their race — regardless if a racist majority exists or not. Pretty much the same answer is given in regards to sexual-orientation.

    It was also wrong for the SCOTUS to arrest LDS leaders and confiscate church property just because they were polygamous — even though a majority were rallied in support of it. And why was that?

    Surely all the monogamists in the 1890’s felt just as you do — they felt there was no good reason to let the LDS polygamists “damn themselves” by living in “sexual perversion and fornication” and they were also not going to let a rag-tag “minority out west” “destroy the traditional institution of marriage”.

    Now, is it wisdom to go forward in darkness and ignorance, not having a sufficiency of information, and possibly put at risk the souls of men, both those of the homosexual and as well as our own souls, by promoting a practice, the righteousness or wickedness of which we are unsure of?

    Let me re-post something I’d said on the comments of this post at Wheat and Tares:

    [#1] In other words, either marriage is or is not divine (God ordained). If divine, then what makes a marriage a marriage in the eyes of God?

    Fair question – either “marriage” is given its essence by “formal relation” [i.e., not the materials, but how they’re put together], or it’s about “the materials” [i.e., only a biological male and a biological female].

    Obviously, the traditional view is that certain kinds of materials are specially-fitted to only receive certain forms — such that its “matter” is essential to its accessibility to the “form”. But you’d still have to clarify what exactly the form of marriage is — what is the arrangement we’re trying to produce with “marriage”, or:

    * what’s God’s design for getting adults together into families is really all about?

    * and what is He wanting us to do/foster in human society by organizing ourselves this way?

    The Natural Law defense is the most common I hear, which states that the form involves reproduction. But I think that’s highly antiquated and does not reflect what we’re really doing when we desire marriage with another person.

    Or you could say that the unique form of marriage is love – or the realization of your True-Self through a cooperative relationship that allows you to develop and find fulfillment. But then what do we do with folks who genuinely and thoughtfully feel it impossible for them to realize their core identity and sexual development with a partner who is the opposite gender? I’m sure people will want to just say that they’re “mistaken” or “deceived”. But why? Because a patriarchal, heteronormative culture of Judean sheepherders received the word of God thousands of years ago and – guess what – received it in terms of patriarchal, heteronormative families?

    [Here’s the part that relates to the question you asked me here: “Now, is it wisdom to go forward in darkness and ignorance, not having a sufficiency of information, and possibly put at risk the souls of men …”]

    I just don’t think that without a new revelation [specifically addressing the relatively recent issue of fidelitous same-gender families that would spell it out in clearer terms] I can agree on the “form” or “purpose” of marriage being anything other than forming relationship pairings filled with fidelity, cooperation, commitment, service, intimacy, fellowship, emotional fulfillment, and companionship [meaning putting it in gender-neutral terms that both straight folks and gay folks can fulfill].

    And I think that [barring a new revelation that changes my mind] LDS are the ones in a unique position for getting us away from traditional Christianity’s antiquated views regurgitated from a set of revelations they didn’t receive – and associating “marriage” with people having happy, loving, consensual, and faithful cooperative-unions – and presenting a family doctrine that’s based on chaste, fidelitous sexual ethics [whether the families are hetero-, homo-, monogamous, or poly-].

  145. With a question — why was it wrong for the law to define marriage in terms of the same-race pairings majority in previous decades? I’d say it was wrong because it’s not right to withhold a legalized marriage recognition from people just because of their race — regardless if a racist majority exists or not. Pretty much the same answer is given in regards to sexual-orientation.

    But again, this is comparing apples to oranges, or two things which are not equivalent. The marriage license at the time granted licenses to heterosexual marriage pairings (otherwise known as marriage), but discriminated according to race. “In order to be able to receive a marriage license, the husband and wife have to be of the same race. What are the races of the bride and groom?” There has never been, nor is there even now, discrimination against a particular sexual orientation. This has never been the case: “In order to be able to receive a marriage license, the husband and wife have to be of a heterosexual orientation. What are the sexual orientations of the bride and groom?”

    In the context of marriage, discrimination occurred according to a race standard. In the context of marriage, discrimination never occurs according to sexual orientation. Marriage remains the same in either case, what is different is that for one case discrimination occurs, while for the other it doesn’t.

    What you are proposing is not equivalent, because marriage has fundamentally changed. So this is not a case of discrimination, but of altering the ordinance according to the desire of a very small minority.

    “A man + a woman” is not equivalent to “a man + a man” or” a woman + a woman.” Leaving aside every other argument, you must concede that “a man + a woman” has equivalency only with “a man + a woman.” So the argument comparing SSMP to race has no basis in logic. It’s a logical fallacy used to play upon people’s emotions.

    Now, the racist would say that “a white man + a black woman” is not equivalent to “a white man + a white woman,” but if you drop the adjectives they become equivalent. It works the very same way if we use adjectives that describe the sexual orientation. “A heterosexual man + a heterosexual woman” is not equivalent to “a homosexual man + a homosexual woman,” but if you drop the adjectives, it’s equivalent. Not so with SSMP. “A heterosexual man + a heterosexual woman” is not equivalent to “a homosexual man + a homosexual man.” When you drop the adjectives, it is still not equivalent.

    The only way around this obvious fallacy in reasoning, is to alter the ordinance and reduce “man” and “woman” to merely human or person or individual. In other words, to eliminate the sexual identity altogether. And this is the devilish plan, as I’ve been saying.

    The law of chastity has, as its purpose, the lawful unification of opposite sexes. Sexual identity (maleness and femaleness) is at its heart. The (male) man leaves his (male) father and (female) mother and cleaves to his (female) wife and the two (opposite sexes) become one flesh.

    Marriage, as a part of the law of chastity, cannot be decoupled from the sex of the participants without changing the ordinance. Changing the race of the participants does not change the ordinance, but changing the sex does.

    Your definition of marriage is extra-scriptural, based on a man-made philosophy. In order to stand on it, you must ignore the scriptures that describe marriage in sexual terms by stating that they were just a product of cultural, heterosexual bias. But doing that makes the whole canon questionable. Also, you must throw out all of the historical understanding and law concerning the heterosexual nature of marriage and say that no one, from Adam to now, had the proper view.

    In other words, SSMP is something new, a new revelation, that departs from the traditional understandings and expands on the definition and meaning of marriage. Yet from whence did this revelation come? Did it come from prophets? No. The prophets among us denounce it. Did it come from the leaders of the Lord’s church? No, they also denounce it. So where does it come from? From special interests that exert political pressure to change the laws of the state, so that the strong-arm of the state can be used to force all others to conform to the new standard. That ought to be enough to figure out that this movement is not inspired of God, but proceeds from the evil one.

    It was also wrong for the SCOTUS to arrest LDS leaders and confiscate church property just because they were polygamous — even though a majority were rallied in support of it. And why was that?

    Surely all the monogamists in the 1890′s felt just as you do — they felt there was no good reason to let the LDS polygamists “damn themselves” by living in “sexual perversion and fornication” and they were also not going to let a rag-tag “minority out west” “destroy the traditional institution of marriage”.

    The LDS were breaking the law, because they felt the law was unconstitutional, because of their freedom of religion, but it was later ruled that it was constitutional. The issue was not over whether states had the authority to say who could or could not be married (they had that right and still do), but over whether the territories, under the jurisdiction of the federal government, could be regulated as the states were. The federal government simply conformed their laws to those of the states, making monogamy a federal statute. The saints disobeyed the law until it was ruled constitutional, then they were instructed to conform to the law.

    Was it wrong for SCOTUS to rule as they did? Regardless of our feelings about the rightness or lawfulness of plural marriage, jurisdiction over marriage is in the hands of the states and the federal government (for the territories.) In other words, SCOTUS merely upheld that the various governments had the right to make such determinations. And this is my point. Although individual rights are important, they cannot infringe upon the rights of the group, represented by the majority. The one infringing upon the other, going either way, is equally wrong. But depending on the issue involved, jurisdiction may be in the hands of the individual or in the hands of the group (majority). In the case of determining who can get married, that jurisdiction resides in the majority. So, SCOTUS got it right in that case.

    The Natural Law defense is the most common I hear, which states that the form involves reproduction. But I think that’s highly antiquated and does not reflect what we’re really doing when we desire marriage with another person.

    Marriage itself is highly antiquated. Adam was married to Eve in the Garden of Eden. Can’t get much more antiquated than that. They were given the commandment to multiply and replenish the earth in association with their marriage. I’m not sure how you can disassociate reproduction from marriage. Care to try your hand at doing so? I’ll give you some examples:

    Said to a married man and a woman: “I now pronounce you man and wife. Now, multiply and replenish the earth.”

    Said to a “married” man and a man: “I now pronounce you legally married. Now, multiply and replenish the earth.”

    Huh? The commandment to multiply and replenish the earth is a cultural mandate, applying to all of mankind, regardless of sexual orientation, but is to be obeyed only within the context of marriage. So, how exactly does a homosexual “married” couple comply with this cultural mandate without breaking the law of chastity or without getting married to someone of the opposite sex?

    Because a patriarchal, heteronormative culture of Judean sheepherders received the word of God thousands of years ago and – guess what – received it in terms of patriarchal, heteronormative families?

    You do not need to look back so long. Look at all the scriptures Joseph Smith brought forth. It’s still patriarchal and heteronormative. This is the same man that introduced polyandry among the saints, so we can’t pidgeon-hole him into a stereotype or say he was primarily a product of his culture. Could it be that these patriarchal, heteronormative views were divinely inspired?

    I just don’t think that without a new revelation [specifically addressing the relatively recent issue of fidelitous same-gender families that would spell it out in clearer terms] I can agree on the “form” or “purpose” of marriage being anything other than forming relationship pairings filled with fidelity, cooperation, commitment, service, intimacy, fellowship, emotional fulfillment, and companionship [meaning putting it in gender-neutral terms that both straight folks and gay folks can fulfill].

    Justin, I think you need to go back to the scriptures and re-assess your definition of marriage in light of ALL the scriptures. See if you can find your description of marriage in the scriptures, and please give me the scriptural references. I think your definition is deficient in certain important areas, and additive in others. In other words, it appears to me to be a mix of scriptures with the philosophies of men.

  146. I mentioned this in the first comment on your Wheat & Tares post of this same name, but didn’t elaborate on it, apparently. All I wrote was:

    Also, revelation given in this dispensation codifies the stewardship/concerns aspect of marriage.

    Specifically, I had in view this scripture:

    Women have claim on their husbands for their maintenance, until their husbands are taken;

    This law of maintenance has no meaning in homosexual relations, for two men have no wives and two women have no husbands. The homosexual relationship breaks the established stewardship/concerns norms which have been ordained by God. The homosexual relationship, then, is not one of stewardship and concerns, but of a partnership, using the language of equality.

    The Family: A Proclamation to the World, although not scripture, does contain truths, but in one part, in particular, whoever wrote this document seemed to try to soften the scriptural (doctrinal) stewardship/concerns to bring it more in harmony with current, populist views on sexual equality. And so we got the bizarrely worded:

    By divine design, fathers are to preside over their families in love and righteousness and are responsible to provide the necessities of life and protection for their families. Mothers are primarily responsible for the nurture of their children. In these sacred responsibilities, fathers and mothers are obligated to help one another as equal partners.

    LDS feminists love the last sentence and hate the first two. But that is only because they are looking at the statements through a philosophy of men. If you look at them through a scriptural lens, the opposite view comes out, namely that the first two sentences are essentially, doctrinally correct, and the last sentence is doctrinally wrong. Doctrinally, meaning scripturally, only the wife is designated as “an helpmeet” in the marriage relationship. We see this same unequal formation in the priesthood, in which deacons are the designated helpmeet to teachers, and not vice versa, and in which priests are the designated helpmeets to elders, and not vice versa. The idea of “an equal partnership” in marriage is extra-scriptural, meaning it has its origin as a man-made philosophy.

    Yet, SSMP is firmly grounded in this philosophy. In fact, it is the embodiment of it, for a man is equivalent to a man, and a woman is equivalent to a woman. Thus, a homosexual “marriage” partnership should be more equal than a heterosexual marriage partnership, simply because there are no sexual differences between the partners.

    Marriage, on the other hand, is all about the inequality and differences of the sexes, and the beauty that, despite the distinctiveness of maleness and femaleness, they can come together and create something new (life). Thus, instead of eliminating the differences between the sexes, God assigns them distinct roles, which actually serve to accentuate the differences. As the French say, “Vive la difference!” This polarization of the sexes is meant to enhance the experience of coming together and becoming one flesh, showing forth the miraculous power of God in bringing two very different types of beings together and creating joy, despite their differences. In other words, it is meant to be a miracle, and as evidence of its miraculous nature, the procreative power is given.

  147. I imagine I will have to clarify on why exactly that section of the Proclamation is “bizarrely worded.” The final sentence reads thusly:

    In these sacred responsibilities, fathers and mothers are obligated to help one another as equal partners.

    But the first clause could be moved to the end and the meaning doesn’t change, like so:

    Fathers and mothers are obligated to help one another as equal partners in these sacred responsibilities.

    So, if we input the meaning of that final sentence into the preceding two sentences, we get a nullification of the preceding two sentences. To wit:

    By divine design, fathers are to preside over their families in love and righteousness and are responsible to provide the necessities of life and protection for their families.

    now becomes

    Fathers and mothers are obligated to help one another as equal partners in the sacred responsibility of presiding over their families in love and righteousness and are responsible to provide the necessities of life and protection for their families.

    The first sentence alone says that God’s design is that fathers preside and provide. That’s the divine doctrine of patriarchy and stewardships/concerns. The last sentence says that fathers and mothers are to preside and provide as equal partners. That’s partnership and equality.

    The second sentence doesn’t fare much better:

    Mothers are primarily responsible for the nurture of their children.

    now becomes

    Fathers and mothers are obligated to help one another as equal partners in the sacred responsibility of nurturing their children.

    The second sentence alone says that it’s the mother’s main duty to nurture the children. That’s the divine doctrine of matriarchy, or what the Holy Spirit does, brooding over the creations of God. The last sentence says that fathers and mothers are to nurture the children as equal partners. In other words, that it’s not mom’s primary responsibility.

    So, the first two sentences put forth a doctrine of differentiation and specialization of gender roles (mother and father), which negates the third, and the third sentence puts forth a doctrine of dedifferentiation and non-specialization of gender roles (generic parents), which negates the first two. Perhaps the author(s) of this document were trying to make it be all things to all people…

    I guess I’ll add this, too: From the comments above about begetting and baring, semen (which means seed, which means to sow), landladies, etc., it’s apparent that the Lord follows the same patterns both temporally and spiritually. So, mothers nurture the children that they bare (uncover, or which are born to them), just as their temporal bodies nurtured the begotten child in their wombs for 9 months. The father begets a child, it is nurtured by the mother’s body, and then she bares it. The father provided the initial necessity for life (the begetting) and protected the mother while she nurtured the child in her womb. Once bared, the father continues to provide the necessities of life and protection. What does the mother do once the child is bared? She continues to nurture it.

    I suppose some would say that the assigned, gospel role differentiation is based on biology, but the truth is probably the reverse: that our created biology is based upon the divine (heavenly) role differentiation, because all ordained things must be foreordained according to some heavenly pattern.

    One more thing: A matrimony resembles a bishopric, but to my knowledge, no bishopric or any other presidency in the priesthood, has the counselors on an equal standing as the president. The bishop is a high priest, as are his two counselors typically, but no one considers them three bishops, nor of equal authority and rights. The right to preside resides and remains with the bishop alone, or with his counselors in his absence. Same goes with all the other presidencies in the church. Although there may be three men designated “president,” one presides over the other two, making their standing unequal. Even the two counselors are numbered, first or second, in order of authority. Virtually nothing in the gospel or priesthood is ever of equal standing when it comes to presiding.

    As matrimony is a gospel ordinance, we can expect it to follow these same priesthood patterns of inequality or differentiation. And, in fact, the bulk of history attests that that is indeed the case. SSMP, though, puts the two men or the two women on equal grounds, which indicates that SSMP likely does not have gospel roots.

  148. This is all going to come down on the side of Point of View. Not laws, not the state involvement or non-involvement but our own or an organization’s POV. No amount of discussion will probably change that and all sides will use the available data and information to support their position. (Jeff Spector, from a comment on your other post.)

    I don’t expect to change your mind on this issue, or anyone’s mind, for that matter, since what Jeff wrote is likely accurate. However, I’ve written so much already on this topic, using your posts, that I don’t feel up to collecting them together to publish as a series of posts. It’s easier to just point people to this or that comment of mine on this post, if I feel the need to explain my position. As a result, and I hope you don’t mind, I will continue to expound here, as there is still a whole lot more to consider and say about this issue.

    SSMP and Paul the Apostle

    SSMP runs into problems when we take Paul’s words into consideration.

    1 Corinthians chapter 11 is a chapter that not too many people like. I suppose if a vote were taken among the membership, a lot of them would vote to have it excised from the canon. But for the time being, it is canonical.

    The chapter heading reads, “Paul speaks of certain customs of hair and grooming.” Although Paul writes of these customs, which were extant during his times, he also unfolds gospel principles to apply to the customs. The customs may not be applicable to us in our times, but the unfolded gospel principles are.

    One of the principles that many find hard to accept is:

    …the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God. (1 Cor. 11:3)

    SSMP half passes this test. For two homosexual men, they may claim they comply with scriptural doctrine by saying Christ is their head, but for two homosexual women, there is no man who is their head. When Jesus says to them, “Go, call thy husband, and come hither” (John 4:16), they must honestly reply, “I have no husband” (John 4:17). Lesbians, then, cannot comply with this principle.

    Moving on down the chapter and by-passing the talk of hair customs, we find another principle which many take to be hard:

    [A man] is the image and glory of God: but the woman is the glory of the man. For the man is not of the woman; but the woman of the man. Neither was the man created for the woman; but the woman for the man. (1 Cor. 11:7-9)

    This is describing the order of a priesthood presidency. The counselors in any priesthood presidency are created as helpmeets for the president. The president was not created for the counselors, but the counselors for the president. The counselors are an outgrowth of the president. They are of him. The president is not an outgrowth of the counselors. He is not of them.

    The pattern is based upon Adam and his rib (which became Eve), which grew out of him. And he and Eve were based upon the heavenly pattern.

    SSMP half passes this precept, in that homosexual men get a pass, while lesbian women come up lacking. They were created for the man, yet where is their man? Where is their husband?

    Skipping down a verse, we come to yet another gospel principle which SSMP totally fails at:

    Nevertheless neither is the man without the woman, neither the woman without the man, in the Lord. For as the woman is of the man, even so is the man also by the woman; but all things of God. (1 Cor. 11:11-12)

    Thus, there is no such thing as a complete (consummated) man without a woman, and there is no such thing as a complete (consummated) woman without a man. Every homosexual male needs to join with a female to become a (completed) man and every homosexual female needs to join with a male to become a (completed) woman.

    Even biology attests to this spiritual fact. A female’s body is not fully mature until she suckles her young on her breasts. Until that happens, her breasts remain immature or not fully developed. But at that point she is physically considered to be an adult, fully mature (developed), completed woman. Yet it cannot occur without joining with a male.

    As he completes her, so she completes him. SSMP, then, high-jacks this pattern and process and promotes the arrested development of mankind. It is not compatible with these scriptures.

    One other admonition of Paul contradicts SSMP:

    I say, to avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife, and let every woman have her own husband. (JST 1 Cor. 7:2)

    Now, you may say that that only has application for the times, since heterosexual marriage was all there was, but that would be wrong. There has been no revelation authorizing SSMP, therefore, these instructions are applicable even in our times. Until such time as God reveals and authorizes SSMP, we are to obey His written word, which we already have. This is according to the principle:

    For if I will, saith the Lord of Hosts, …I will command my people; otherwise they shall hearken unto these things. (Jacob 2:30)

    SSMP and the 5th Commandment

    Honour thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee. (Exodus 20:12)

    The devilish plan is to use SSMP to cause the children of men to break this commandment by having homosexual couples raise children apart from their biological father or biological mother, so that the children cannot comply with this commandment. The child, whose lesbian mother got some anonymously donated sperm to produce him, is cut off from his biological father. There’s no way to honor him because he was never given access to him. Instead, he gets two mothers. And the child, whose homosexual father utilized a surrogate to produce him, is likewise cut off from his mother, getting instead two fathers.

    The appeal or excitement of homosexuality is that it is so naughty. It is thrilling because of its transgressive nature. Transgressing the laws of God is what it is all about. So, it is to be expected that SSMP will be milked for everything they can get out of it in order to transgress as many of God’s laws as possible, including Commandment #5.

  149. I came across a couple of interesting articles and wanted to link to them, for future reference. One is


    “Full Faith and Credit”–A Commentary by Prof. Lea Brilmayer

    Except:

    The fly in the ointment was that nobody bothered to check whether the Full Faith and Credit Clause had actually ever been read to require one state to recognize another state’s marriages. It hasn’t. Longstanding precedent from around the country holds that a state need not recognize a marriage entered into in another state with different marriage laws if those laws are contrary to strongly held local public policy. The “public policy doctrine,” almost as old as this country’s legal system, has been applied to foreign marriages between first cousins, persons too recently divorced, persons of different races, and persons under the age of consent. The granting of a marriage license has always been treated differently than a court award, which is indeed entitled to full interstate recognition. Court judgments are entitled to full faith and credit but historically very little interstate recognition has been given to licenses.

    This “public policy doctrine” is basically what I was talking about concerning the “rights of the majority,” which cannot justifiably be infringed upon. Also, the talk of recognition of licenses between the States is a very valid point to make, which is elaborated upon here:

    Full faith and credit clause does not mandate gay marriage

  150. Here is another article from that same site, entitled, “Modern “equality” activism unlike civil rights movement“. It makes the same point I tried to make above about SSMP and marriage discrimination based on race not being equivalent, but the author probably says it better than I do:

    Interestingly enough, the institution of marriage is equally accessible to all who have attained statutory age. The issue is not marriage equality, but whether the institution of marriage can be retooled to suit particular proclivities.

    An iconic moment in the civil rights struggle occurred when four African-American students staged a sit-in by requesting to be served coffee at a Woolworth’s lunch counter in Greensboro, North Carolina. The movement gained a momentum, and Woolworth’s eventually changed it’s policy. Imagine instead of requesting coffee, the students had said that “equal treatment” meant that Woolworth’s had to change its menu to provide them with the cuisine they wanted to eat? That would have been seen as absurd and unreasonable. Yet, in principle, modern equality movements seem to go that “Bridge to far.” without anyone noticing.

    I also liked his next paragraph, since it shows a weakness men have in not recognizing hidden agendas, or in believing deceitful propaganda:

    Women’s’ equality is undoubtedly a noble enterprise, from suffrage to demands for equal pay. But in recent decades the issue of abortion has increasingly come to define the movement. 20 years ago, I called myself “pro-choice,” thinking that the abortion issue was an honest disagreement over when life began. Of course, I was mistaken. Abortion was about a type of equality that was measured by limitless personal autonomy. Too many people view the abortion issue as having nothing more at stake than rights of privacy. What if a generation 100 years from now, looks back and views abortion as a barbaric practice, much the way we today condemn the generations that permitted slavery and racial segregation? Two decades ago I thought maximizing choice was virtuous, but came to understand that the virtue of any choice depends on the thing being chosen.

    I like that statement, “the virtue of any choice depends on the thing being chosen.”

    A few more quotes that I like and then I’ll end:

    My Father and I were discussing how perceptions have changed over the years. He has been retired over 30 years now. He told me that once the big talk at his place of employment revolved around the actions of a landlord in that neighborhood. Apparently an unmarried man and woman moved into one of his apartment houses. When he discovered this situation, he promptly evicting them, saying, “I’ll be darned if I ever will allow an unmarried couple to live in one of apartment properties.”

    At the time, many people who discovering this applauded the action. They said among themselves “Here is a rare business person who puts his ethical principles over his wallet.” Today, such a person would be held in derision for trying to “impose” his morality on everyone else. Worse yet, he would probably be sued for housing discrimination. Somewhere along the line, George Orwell became alive and well. What was once a virtue is now just hateful bigotry.

    Today, the Constitution is used to champion the idea of maximum personal autonomy without such internal moral restraint.

    I suppose I ought to expound these principles, since who can tell what I mean by these quotes, but I think I’ll just let them sit, for now. If I get the urge later, I’ll publish it as a separate post, instead of as a comment.

  151. In a comment above I mentioned “the higher learning factories overseas that take girls and boys of faith and mold them into atheists.” This was my own observation in talking to people who had gone to colleges or universities in Europe, so it’s not exactly a statistical sample. Still, based on these conversations I had, and the same consistent pattern that revealed itself in them, it seemed apparent that whatever was happening in those classrooms was sucking the faith out of the students.

    So, coming across the article Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity, and Employment Law, the following paragraph caught my eye:

    The well-known “Chicago Sex Survey” found that men were twice as likely and women nine times as likely to identify as gay, lesbian, or bisexual if they had completed college.

  152. In the context of marriage, discrimination never occurs according to sexual orientation.

    I can’t believe that you don’t understand how saying that: “marriage” can only equal “man+woman”, therefore discrimination against same-gender-attracted folks can’t occur is itself discrimination.

    The only way around this obvious fallacy in reasoning, is to alter the ordinance and reduce “man” and “woman” to merely human or person or individual.

    Men and women are not “reduced” to “mere” humans or persons. Men and women are humans and persons. The debate over same-gender marriage has been about [on the SSM-side] the belief that one of the Rights of Personhood should include the right to marry according to one’s heart’s desire — that a Human Society should acknowledge/encourage forms of committed sexual ethics among any couple who feels that attraction for each other.

    Yes — it’s a different way of looking at things. But that doesn’t make it wrong [just by virtue of being a new/different thing].

    The law of chastity has, as its purpose, the lawful unification of opposite sexes. Sexual identity (maleness and femaleness) is at its heart. The (male) man leaves his (male) father and (female) mother and cleaves to his (female) wife and the two (opposite sexes) become one flesh.

    Since we’re talking about same-gender attraction — and since you mentioned “sexual identity” — I suppose I’ll wade into the question of what you think about marriage among those who a trans gender identity.

    Say a trans-woman [with or without sexual-reassignment surgery] desires to marry a cis-woman. Since the trans-woman was biologically-born as a male [but identifies with the sexual identity of a female] — is their marriage valid because of their biological-sex difference, or is it perversion because of the trans-woman’s gender-identity?

    I guess I’ll add this, too: From the comments above about begetting and baring, semen (which means seed, which means to sow), landladies, etc., it’s apparent that the Lord follows the same patterns both temporally and spiritually.

    Oh yeah — and another off-topic question that this made me think of — that I’ll go ahead and wade into too: I know you’ve written that masturbation doesn’t break the law of chastity, but you did bring up Judah’s son who practiced the withdraw method of birth control during intercourse with Tamar [“spilling his seed”].

    If the “power of procreation” lies solely in the sperm of men — then how is “casting your seed by the wayside” not a sin? How is masturbation or forms of birth-control such as the withdraw method [which are wasting the man’s “powerfilled seed”] different from sexual intercourse among two men? In both cases the one person isn’t “married” to the other [you say two men can’t “marry” and I know that no one can “marry” theirself] and in both cases procreative sperm is wasted on “soil” that can’t “produce fruit with seed in itself, reproducing after its own kind”.

  153. Also — part of why I feel the way I do about this issue is that in my experience with acquaintances I’ve had who have same-gender attraction [as well as my own experience as a heterosexual], I’ve been left to conclude that one’s sexual orientation is something that you discover about yourself — rather than something one chooses to be.

    And given that, among a number of animal species, there’s also been observed a certain minority that seem to display a preferential affectionate orientation towards members of the same-gender — I can’t help but conclude that the ~3% or so of people who are homosexual are just a brute fact of biological diversity among human beings [and other animals too].

    From the context of a time when people didn’t understand that the Standard Model, or General Relativity, or Algebra, or Germ Theory, or the Central Dogma of Inheritance — when women weren’t allowed to vote, own property, be gainfully employed, or wear pants — we’re going to craft a civil ethic for how we’re going to relate with those members of our society that experience emotional and sexual fulfillment with someone who has the same gender?

    I’m still not convinced that the scriptures are talking about what’s being talked about today — which is the faithful, lifelong consensual relationship between two adults who have the same gender. I mean, the scriptures don’t speak on a whole host of things that are relevant and important today — and vice versa, it says heaps of things about topics that we largely ignore today, because it’s 2013.

    “Redefinition of Marriage” is certainly the key-phrase used by the non-homosexual marriage crowd — and I think we are talking about a re-evalution to be sure [and should be]. A re-evaluation of what exactly it is that society is seeking to foster in human pair-bonding relationships. My case has been that committed, fulfilling, life-long relationships are a better “hill-to-die-on” than one partner with a penis and the other with a vagina.

  154. On the DOMA Arigato, But No Thanks! post at Wheat and Tares, I’ve been getting into it a little bit with Lorian and Nick. In one of my comments, I quoted an except from a paper called, ESSAY: A Fairy Tale: the Myth of the Homosexual Lifestyle in Anti-Gay-and-Lesbian Rhetoric, which stated:

    A far different story is told by opponents of same-sex rights. According to their version, homosexuality is a depraved, immoral and decadent “lifestyle,” not an immutable sexual orientation.

    I commented on this except by saying:

    Personally, I find the idea proposed by this essay of an “immutable sexual orientation” preposterous as it contradicts what we know about human sexuality…

    In the article I linked to above (Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity, and Employment Law), the authors actually talk about this very topic. The summarizing opening statement is:

    The Employment Non-Discrimination Act would equate sexual orientation and gender identity, ambiguous and malleable concepts, with immutable features like race, color, and ethnicity as classes worthy of special legal protection.

    If you haven’t yet read it, I recommend that you do.

    Sexual orientation appears to be a consciously, or sub-consciously, chosen aspect of our identity. We aren’t born with attraction to one or both sexes, but as we grow up, we utilize the agency we’ve been given, in accordance with the environment we are brought up in, to make that choice. It is not something biological or genetic, but agency-based, or choice-based. As a result, that choice can, and often does, change. Because the choice can occur sub-consciously, we may not even be aware of the choice having been made by us, and so we get the many claims of having been born oriented one way or another.

    So, when the Lord gives us the law of chastity, He is orienting us in the way He wants us to choose, which is heterosexual. In other words, the men are to sexually love the women, and the women are to sexually love the men. We can choose to comply with the commandment and orient ourselves this way, or we can orient ourselves in some other way. The choice is ours to make.

    When I wrote, “In the context of marriage”, the context is heterosexual. In other words, marriage is heterosexual because this is the orientation that God has ordained. This is why SSMP cannot be considered marriage. Marriage is, by definition, oriented heterosexually. So, SSMP cannot be marriage because SSMP’s orientation is not equivalent, it being oriented homosexually.

    Again, when I wrote, “in the context of marriage, discrimination never occurs according to sexual orientation,” the meaning of that is that one’s personal sexual orientation is never an issue as to who can marry and who cannot. A homosexually oriented man can marry a woman, just as a heterosexually oriented man can. The law does not discriminate according to one’s sexual orientation. The ordinance itself, though, is, by definition, (being defined by God Himself), heterosexual in nature. So, this is not a question of discrimination, but of changing the definition of marriage into something other than the unification of opposite sexes.

    When you say:

    I can’t believe that you don’t understand how saying that: “marriage” can only equal “man+woman”, therefore discrimination against same-gender-attracted folks can’t occur is itself discrimination.

    Marriage, being a heterosexually-oriented rite, is, by its very nature and definition, exclusive of everything outside of that definition. You may call it discriminatory in the same sense that an apple discriminates because it is an apple and not a pear. It is what it is and isn’t what it isn’t. You can call that discrimination if you want, but that’s merely the state of being defined, as opposed to being undefined or definable according to whim.

    Man and woman are specialized terms. Human, person, individual, etc., are generic terms (or less specialized). Human cells are specialized, or differentiated. But before differentiation, they are in an undifferentiated, or less specialized state. The differentiated states of cells are specialized, whereas the undifferentiated states often have potential to become more than one type of specialized cell, depending on the location of the intended cell. A regenerative researcher regenerates human tissue by causing the specialized cells of an area to dedifferentiate (using an electric current or silver or magnets, etc.), meaning that they revert to an earlier developmental stage, which then initiates a rebuild sequence, that regenerates the area by differentiating again into specialized cells, each cell taking its cue from the cells that surround it. If you wanted to change an organism, the first thing to do is to get it to dedifferentiate its cells, then cause these cells somehow to differentiate into alternate specialized cells, different than the ones they were originally programmed to differentiate into.

    So, regeneration and alteration of an organism requires first a reduction, or dedifferentiation, from specialized to less specialized or generic. Then you can re-write the program and rebuild according to the image you want.

    SSMP follows this same pattern. Heck, the devil himself follows this same pattern. Break everything down you don’t like (and want to change) into its constituents and then rebuild from the ashes. So, man and woman (differentiated “cells”) must be dedifferentiated into human, person, etc. Marriage (a specialized, heterosexual “cell”) must be dedifferentiated into a non-specialized form (a loving relationship between two people), etc. This is the reduction I speak of.

    The debate over same-gender marriage has been about [on the SSM-side] the belief that one of the Rights of Personhood should include the right to marry according to one’s heart’s desire — that a Human Society should acknowledge/encourage forms of committed sexual ethics among any couple who feels that attraction for each other.

    All such arguments, though, are bogus, because all rights are jurisdictional. There is no such thing as an absolute right. If so, my right to life could never be justly taken from me, no matter how many lives of other people I took. I don’t have an absolute right to anything, at all. All my rights, all rights, period, are jurisdictional.

    Those promoting SSMP are claiming a right that doesn’t exist in an individual. No one has a right to marry whom they please. There is a jurisdictional interplay between the rights of the individual, the rights of the object of his affection, the rights of the parents of that object (if it is a minor), and the rights of the majority, represented by the state, tribe, church or other organization or institution regulating marriage. Marriage is a social union, so society has a say in what is acceptable and what is not acceptable. In other words, it is society that regulates marriage, through the parents, family, tribe, church, state, etc. This right to regulate is jurisdictional, like all rights, but wherever there is proper jurisdiction, it is morally wrong to infringe upon the regulatory right. Those advocating SSMP do, and are attempting to continue to do, just that, by inventing an individual right that supersedes the regulatory right of the majority.

    SSMP isn’t wrong because its new, it’s wrong because it is a perversion, both theologically and “rights-wise.” (I put that in quotes because all rights and the very concept of rights comes from theology, beginning with the “rights to the priesthood,” etc.) SSMP seeks to confound marriage by confounding rights. It falsely claims that its adherents’ rights are being infringed because the right to regulate marriage, held by the majority, is being exercised. It seeks to deny (eliminate) this regulatory right altogether. So, whether coming from theology or coming from the standpoint of rights, the SSMP platform is based upon a deception and subversive to legitimate rights.

    Yet, this agenda has won some major battles, but only through subterfuge and other trickery, showing this is in no way, shape or form a legitimate or honest movement. The SCOTUS decisions on DOMA and Prop 8 were both shamefully unjust, not to mention the decisions of the courts in California, as well as those in government who did not defend that law which the people had chosen, as they were duty-bound by law to do. The whole affair is a state of corruption, everyone seemingly conspiring to establish SSMP regardless of the will of the people.

    The trans-gender cases already have legal protocol. I think it comes down to what a person’s legal sex is at the time of marriage. But you probably already knew that. Are you asking about what our theology is concerning this issue? The CHI has guidelines on this issue:

    Members Who Have Undergone a Transsexual Operation

    A member who has undergone an elective transsexual operation may not receive a temple recommend.

    Persons Who Are Considering or Have Undergone a Transsexual Operation

    A person who is considering an elective transsexual operation may not be baptized or confirmed. Baptism and confirmation of a person who has already undergone an elective transsexual operation require the approval of the First Presidency. The mission president may request this approval if he has interviewed the person, found him or her to be otherwise worthy, and can recommend baptism. However, such persons may not receive the priesthood or a temple recommend.

    So, the church standard is no (temple) marriage for elective trans-genders. If the state followed the church, they would not be allowed to marry.

    Regarding Judah’s son, the term for that is onanism, which has become conflated with masturbation. According to Catholic doctrine, onanism is a sin, as well as other forms of birth control. The CHI says the following about it (with some other sections of interest thrown in).

    Birth Control

    It is the privilege of married couples who are able to bear children to provide mortal bodies for the spirit children of God, whom they are then responsible to nurture and rear. The decision as to how many children to have and when to have them is extremely intimate and private and should be left between the couple and the Lord. Church members should not judge one another in this matter.

    Married couples should also understand that sexual relations within marriage are divinely approved not only for the purpose of procreation, but also as a way of expressing love and strengthening emotional and spiritual bonds between husband and wife.

    Chastity and Fidelity

    The Lord’s law of chastity is abstinence from sexual relations outside of lawful marriage and fidelity within marriage. Sexual relations are proper only between a man and a woman who are legally and lawfully wedded as husband and wife. Adultery, fornication, homosexual or lesbian relations, and every other unholy, unnatural, or impure practice are sinful. Members who violate the Lord’s law of chastity or who influence others to do so are subject to Church discipline.

    Homosexual Behavior and Same-Gender Attraction

    Homosexual behavior violates the commandments of God, is contrary to the purposes of human sexuality, and deprives people of the blessings that can be found in family life and in the saving ordinances of the gospel. Those who persist is such behavior or who influence others to do so are subject to Church discipline. Homosexual behavior can be forigiven through sincere repentance.

    Same-Gender Marriages

    As a dotrinal principle, based on the scriptures, the Church affirms that marriage between a man and a woman is essential to the Creator’s plan for the eternal destiny of His children.

    Sexual relations are proper only between a man and a woman who are legally and lawfully wedded as husband and wife. Any other sexual relations, including those between persons of the same gender, are sinful and undermine the divinely created institiution of the family. The Church accordingly affirms defining marriage as the legal and lawful union between a man and a woman.

    So, according to the Catholics, we have a responsibility to engage is procreative sex, to assist the work of God in bringing spirits down, and according to the CHI, we have a privilege of assisting, (but not necessarily a responsibility). The Orthodox Jewish view is that you can’t destroy, waste or block the passage of seed, but other forms of birth control are permissable. It would seem that our church has opted to let each couple come to its own conclusion on the meaning and interpretation of the scriptures on this issue.

    According to Jewish law (and Catholicism), onanism is a sin. Masturbation is, too. But the CHI doesn’t have an entry on masturbation. At least, I don’t see one. (Maybe I missed it.) Anyway, if onanism is taken as a sin because of the spilling of the seed, and not because he did not fulfil his duty to raise up seed to his brother, then the logical progression of the principle leads to the Catholic conclusions. Homosexual behavior would be masturbation +. In other words, it would be a sin like unto masturbation, only compounded because it involved two people and many more sexual activities. If onanism is a sin because he didn’t fulfil his duty to raise up seed, that can lead to other conclusions, including the Catholic conclusion that all men have a responsibility to assist God by performing reproductive sex.

  155. Why is it wrong for the law to define marriage in terms of the heterosexual, monogamous, majority given that the States (the people, or majority voice) have the right to define it this way?

    I’ve decided that I’ll come down and say that it’s not wrong for a state to define its terms for marriage. In that way I see polygamists and same-gender couples in the same boat — both are minority groups who’ve had their access to civil recognition of and benefits for their family relationship blocked. Which is why I now say that the marriage equality I favor is everyone equally having no marriage licenses or civil benefits from the state for their relationships.

    In my Having Their Hearts Knit Together in Unity and in Love post, Andrew wrote:

    There’s a lot to comment on, but I’ll just comment about one part…I liked the part dividing the three purposes of genitals. It seems obvious to most people that urination is a different purpose than reproduction…yet these same people generally won’t separate reproduction from unification.

    That being said, have you read any natural law arguments for marriage? From reading some of what you wrote in this article about unification (as opposed to pleasure), it reminded me of a recent paper I read that was a natural law justification/defense/accounting of marriage. To summarize the part that I thought was interesting, the paper said something like: marriage only describes those relationships in which unification is possible. Unification is only possible through a certain subset of penile/vaginal sex acts (obviously, you can have a “one night stand” or “casual sex” arrangement where both people are basically *using* each other to achieve pleasure, whether they care about the mutuality or do not…as you have also described).

    I think the reason why the author focused on unification (although s/he called it something different) was because normally, natural law arguments for marriage fall under criticism because they seem to imply that infertile couples (or fertile couples that nevertheless choose not to have children) are illegitimate. (And given the Catholic church’s position on contraception, I guess the latter group there does have some issues.) This paper wanted to avoid that.

    The notable point about this argument was that using this basis, the author argued against the possibility of unification through any other sex acts. In other words, there can be no such thing as gay marriage, because gay sex acts are never unified — at best they are just the mutual use of the other person for pleasure.

    What do you think?

    I pretty much agreed with what he was talking about — and it accorded with what I’d written in that post. What do you think about that?

  156. Okay, my own understanding of sexual attractions is that it follows the thoughts. So, whoever you are thinking continually about, if you allow the thoughts to become sexual, your body will respond accordingly. Any heterosexual can become bisexual (and also any homosexual can become bisexual), just by thinking sexually about a person of that specific sex. (Initially there may be repulsion, but if the thoughts are allowed to persist, acceptance will follow.) The body will correspond, and suddenly your “sexual orientation” will be bisexual. Now, I’m not saying that a heterosexual will become homosexual or a homosexual will become heterosexual. Once the sexual feelings are generated in the body, the memory of that remains, so that if the thoughts return, so do the bodily sensations. Thus, one who has experienced homosexual feelings and behavior, who has turned away from it, must remain ever vigilant in order not to partake of it again.

    The idea of being assigned (and thus discovering) one’s sexual orientation is a misperception. As agents unto ourselves, we choose everything, but many of our choices escape our notice. Even the things that seem unchosen were chosen by us during our pre-mortal existence. The plan runs on agency, from top to bottom. Every commandment of God requires that there be a choice, otherwise God becomes a tyrant. So, for all commandments, man must have agency to choose, in order to comply. If there is no agency, there is no requirement to comply.

    The law of chastity commands heterosexual sexual relations within matrimony and no sexual relations outside of that context. As a result, a person must be able to choose to comply with these instructions. Every part of it must be a choice. The law does not concern itself with orientation–what a person is attracted to–it only states what behavior is to occur. We are instructed to come to Christ and love him and desire him, etc. These commandments aren’t based upon whether we love Christ, or want to come to Him, or do desire Him. Our Christ orientation or the lack thereof is not the concern. It simply doesn’t matter. The commandment is to come to Him, love Him, desire Him, obey Him, etc., regardless of how we currently feel. If our feelings don’t match these actions, we are to repent and follow the orienting instructions, anyway.

    Although it is true that homosexual behavior is found in the animal kingdom, the bulk of it is found in captivity. Captivity may do something to animals, that they normally wouldn’t do in the wild. Of the wild animals that have been witnessed behaving homosexually, there may be a normal biological function, or there may be another, abnormal cause, such as hormonal fluctuations due to pollutions, etc. Whatever the reasons, and there may be a combination of causes in the various species, both natural and unnatural, it doesn’t address human sexual orientation, which is agency-based, not hormonal-based.

    For example, there are very effeminate men who are totally heterosexual. They obviously have a lower testosterone level than other men, and get mistaken for gay men because of the way they act, yet they are sexually oriented toward women, not men. Hormones can affect our bodies, our voice pitch, etc., but can hormones alone cause a person to be attracted to one gender over another? No. We know this because females can be attracted to both males and females, despite similar hormonal levels. Same with men. It is not our own physical body and the hormones in our bodies that determines who we are attracted to.

    We begin our lives as a blank slate, sexually, and then our environment starts to influence us. The choices that we make, then, begin to shape our perceptions and eventually, those perceptions take the form of a sexual orientation. One day, at a certain age, we “find ourselves” attracted to someone. But, although it all seems so sudden, it was built up over time by agency choices culminating in the day we finally consciously noticed it.

    As evidence that homosexual behavior, or sexual orientation, is not a fixed, biological phenomenon, consider that the percentage of homosexual behavior can and does vary, according to whether the environment promotes it and validates it or condemns it. The percentages go up in areas that it is in vogue, due to sexual experimentation, and down where it is not seen as a good lifestyle. This shouldn’t happen if it were a fixed biological phenomenon. In that case, the percentages should be steady.

    That there is a constant lower end to the percentages, meaning that there are always homosexuals in society, even if only at 1-2%, shouldn’t surprise us. All of the various sins have constant lower ends to their percentages, as well, and they rise in numbers from time to time, depending on the wickedness of the people and what people think they can get away with. Everyone has a different disposition and is tempted differently by each sin. The murderer may not be tempted to steal. The thief may not be tempted to engage in homosexual behavior. The gay man may not be tempted to murder. But whatever temptations work on them, those sins they commit, hence the steady lower percentages among the various crimes.

  157. This shouldn’t happen if it were a fixed biological phenomenon. In that case, the percentages should be steady.

    You’ve supposed that the “going down” is a real going down — and not just a function of people suppressing or not doing openly according to the fixed percent of humans who are born affectionately-oriented towards the same gender. You’re seeing the effect of the conditions in those changing percentages — not a real effect on biology.

    It’s like saying there’s not a lot of polygamists because only perverts and pedophiles want plural wives and child brides [which is a conclusion that ignores the stigmatization and legal/religious proscriptions against it].

  158. Yeah, I can agree with what Andrew wrote. The three purposes, then, are urination, unification, and reproduction. (There needs to be a “u” word that fits reproduction so one can say the three U’s.)

    As for the states defining marriage, I’m okay with a state defining marriage however it sees fit, even if it defines it in a way that I don’t think it should. And I’m okay with each state having its own, conflicting marriage laws. I think having a Constitutional amendment defining marriage is a bad (unwise) idea. The states should retain full jurisdiction over this matter. The federal government should not force any state to conform its laws to the federal standard, which I guess is what the amendment would do, nor should the federal government be forced to conform its laws to the states’ standards, which is what SCOTUS made DOMA do. Everyone knows that you can be obeying your state’s laws while violating a federal statute, or complying with the federal laws while breaking a state law. Neither one needs to have its laws conform to the other, otherwise we’d end up with one big state instead of 50 little ones. The appointed body that makes the federal laws (Congress) had jurisdiction to do so in DOMA, and did so perfectly within their right, but their regulation rights were violated by SCOTUS, (just as the regulation rights of the people of California were violated by the courts and executive branch of California). The whole case of Reynolds v. United States was lost over just such a regulation right that Congress had, which SCOTUS has now removed by judicial decree. Perhaps this is a pattern of what is to planned to happen among the other states…

    Btw, I’m perfectly okay with monogamy being the only legally recognized form of marriage. I think plural marriage not being attached to state benefits makes for a wonderful test of faith.

  159. We double-posted — did you see the comment I wrote before your last one?

  160. Nah, I actually did think of that, but I considered the anonymous nature of many of these polls. Still, under-reporting surely plays a part even in anonymous surveys.

  161. Yeah, my comments are one behind, but I think I’ve finally caught up.

  162. Yeah, my comments are one behind, but I think I’ve finally caught up.

    Glad we’re back on track

    (There needs to be a “u” word that fits reproduction so one can say the three U’s.)

    I tried so hard to think of one when I was writing that post. I would’ve loved three U’s — but no word fit better than reproduction, so I stuck with it.

  163. Homosexual behavior and SSMP prohibited among the Lehites

    I have been so used to using the following scripture in the context of monogamy vs. polygamy, just as everyone uses it, that it feels kind of weird to apply it in the context of SSMP. But, I’ll do it anyway. Of course, this commandment had specific application to the Lehites, but I find it interesting that essentially it made SSMP illegal among the Nephites:

    there shall not any man among you have save it be one wife; and concubines he shall have none (Jacob 2:27)

    We are accustomed to viewing this commandment as a limitation of the number of wives a Lehite man could have, but it also, in essence, prohibited SSMP because it is stated as a negative commandment with one exception: “Thou shalt not have (have what?: sexual partners, which is the context of the passage), other than one wife.” Coupled with another aspect of the law of chastity (cleaving only to one’s wife), it was a de facto prohibition on all male, homosexual, sexual relations among the Lehites.

    The real reason for man-made governments

    Fast-forwarding ahead many hundreds of years, we find another Mormon scripture specifically addressing homosexual relations, this time saying that the principle reason that man-made governments exist is to regulate them. I know, it sounds hard to believe, but here is the scriptural proof, with the homosexual part put into bold type, so that you don’t miss it:

    We believe…that to the laws all men owe respect and deference,…human laws being instituted for the express purpose of regulating our interests as individuals and nations, between man and man… (D&C 134:6)

    (Yes, I’m joking on this one.)

  164. In my Google Scholar searches, when I was addressing some of the things Nick and Lorian brought up on the DOMA post, I came across the following abstract:

    The relationship between suicide risk and sexual orientation: results of a population-based study.

    At the time I saw the abstract, I thought it was interesting, since it obviously shows an elevated risk for suicide for non-heterosexuals, but later I remembered that I have an extended family member, a female first cousin, that “came out” as a lesbian not too many years ago, and I also remembered that when all us first cousins were younger, in our teens or early young adult years, this particular cousin unsuccessfully tried to commit suicide. At the time, none of the extended family knew about her sexual orientation. Now I wonder if her orientation had anything to do with that attempt?

    I also came across this information:

    Bisexual Women and Gay Men at Higher Risk for Intimate Partner Violence

    My cousin is currently in a same-sex relationship. I’m not sure whether they have a legal union, a legal “marriage” or are just living together as a couple. But I do know that my cousin recently gave birth to a child and that the two women are going to raise the child together. I don’t know how she got the child, who or where the father is, whether it was an artificial insemination, etc. I haven’t asked and no one in that part of the family has offered up any information on the circumstances. However, given that these Intimate Partner Violence studies show an elevated risk for bisexual women, my cousin is now in that demographic, since other studies show that all lesbian women also sleep with men from time to time.

  165. That there is a constant lower end to the percentages, meaning that there are always homosexuals in society, even if only at 1-2%, shouldn’t surprise us. All of the various sins have constant lower ends to their percentages, as well, and they rise in numbers from time to time, depending on the wickedness of the people and what people think they can get away with.

    While I can say that I [thus far] can 99% agree with you on this blog [and even ~95% agree with you on this post] — it’s frustrating to hear how privileged people like you will characterize the minorities, by putting “being on the fringe” right along with “sin”.

    You know — a ~4-5% of people are born autistic — does that make them “wicked” and “sinners” and therefore leave the rest of us without surprise with respect to autistic people [like you say we should not be surprised to see a minority are born with same-gender inclinations]?

    Just because a group of human-beings exist on the ends of the Human-Being Bell Curve does not make them [by virtue of that fact] among the “various sinners” that are constantly on the lower ends of their percentages [like psychopaths and murders and thieves, etc.] — which rise from time-to-time as lax society will “allow” them to.

    Unless, of course, you’re viewing them through the lens of sexist, patriarchal revelations received by a culture that didn’t allow women the right to vote, own property, or otherwise be “human-beings” in their own right and didn’t know about meteorology, cosmology, germ-theory, and genetics the way we do today.

  166. While I can say that I [thus far] can 99% agree with you on this blog [and even ~95% agree with you on this post]

    forgetting son once wrote (to me) on this blog,

    I normally agree, understand, and feel the Spirit when I learn from you. I discovered the site weeks ago and have feasted and learned many beautiful truths. This is both from the articles and comments. What you say here though is so far outside of my experience so far that I have a hard time understanding. Not that I don’t understand the knowledge,…I understand your knowledge. I even see valid arguments there. It remains, however outside of my experience and understanding.

    That you got to an astounding 95% agreement on this post and an even more amazing 99% agreement with me over the entire blog content is dumbfounding. Most people reach the point that forgetting son speaks of pretty much the instant I open my mouth, so you ought to receive some kind of reward for that accomplishment.

    it’s frustrating to hear how privileged people like you will characterize the minorities, by putting “being on the fringe” right along with “sin”.

    Being on the fringe does not mean one is a sinner. But in societies that enforce laws against the commission of sin, it (sin) is reduced to small percentages (the margin.) Sinners are marginalized in society through the enforcement of such laws, based upon the commission of crime. Were it not so, sin would increase throughout the body, causing the end of society. This creates a minority of sinners (of the type the law can lay hold on.)

    You know — a ~4-5% of people are born autistic — does that make them “wicked” and “sinners” and therefore leave the rest of us without surprise with respect to autistic people [like you say we should not be surprised to see a minority are born with same-gender inclinations]?

    Autism has a strong genetic basis whereas homosexuality has no basis, whatsoever, in genetics. Autism, therefore, is not agency-based. One who is not autistic cannot choose to be autistic and one who is autistic cannot choose to not be autistic. Like you described in a comment above, one simply “discovers” that they are autistic through testing. Wickedness, or sin, is agency-based. The law of God can have no hold upon anyone who cannot make a choice in a matter. So autism, or anything else that is outside of one’s sphere of choice, cannot be sinful or wicked.

    I never said “we should not be surprised to see a minority are born with same-gender inclinations”. I would never say that because nobody is born homosexual or heterosexual or bisexual. Nobody is born with sexual inclinations, whatsoever. We start out a blank, loving slate. Later we develop friendships (platonic relationships) until we get older. Finally, sexual attraction is experienced. The idea of people being born with hetero- or homo- or bi- inclinations is preposterous. So, what I said was that since homosexual behavior is a sin, which means it is agency-based, we should not be surprised to find it in all populations in low numbers, because the nature of sin is such that even with strictly enforced laws, a small percentage of people will not resist the temptation to commit sin, risking the legal consequences (if caught), according to their dispositions.

    As proof that homosexual inclinations must, of necessity, be agency-based, consider what I wrote about in the “Homosexual behavior and SSMP prohibited among the Lehites” comment. Those two paragraphs present evidence that homosexual practices were outlawed among the Lehites. If we assume that 2% of all populations are “born” homosexual, that means that 2% of the Lehites were prohibited from acting on natural-born impulses to be with someone of the same gender because of this word of the Lord, given to Lehi and Jacob. That would make the law unjust and, considering that the law was in effect for 600 years, exceedingly tyrannical, for it created untold misery for the 2% of the population who were “born different” from everyone else.

    Again, all that goes under the assumption that sexual orientation is not a choice. But if we assume that it is a choice, then that law cannot be considered unjust, nor tyrannical, for God has a right to regulate human sexual relations, hence the law of chastity.

    The two views: God is a tyrant who makes unjust laws that cause untold misery or God is benevolent who makes just laws that cause unspeakable joy, come out depending on which filter you have over your mind.

    Just because a group of human-beings exist on the ends of the Human-Being Bell Curve does not make them [by virtue of that fact] among the “various sinners” that are constantly on the lower ends of their percentages [like psychopaths and murders and thieves, etc.] — which rise from time-to-time as lax society will “allow” them to.

    I agree with that statement and I never implied anything other than that.

    What the homosexual agenda seeks to do is put homosexual inclinations on the same level with race or skin color or some other immutable, biological fact. In other words, they are trying to level the argument that homosexuality is not agency-based, that they had and have no choice in it, whatsoever. That they were merely “born that way.” Which assertion contradicts the facts we have about human sexuality. In other words, this is merely a bald-faced lie.

    Unless, of course, you’re viewing them through the lens of sexist, patriarchal revelations received by a culture that didn’t allow women the right to vote, own property, or otherwise be “human-beings” in their own right and didn’t know about meteorology, cosmology, germ-theory, and genetics the way we do today.

    Now here you get into the same territory that that peace-nik, father-and-son duo, the Madsons, got into, and which they are still in, to this very day. Do you remember what I wrote to them on that Pure Mormonism post? Do I need to expound upon the principle further? I can unfold this fully with the scriptures, or just summarize, your pick.

    I will attempt a summarization and if you need more, I’ll unfold it entirely.

    Up above (in this same comment) I wrote,

    The two views: God is a tyrant who makes unjust laws that cause untold misery or God is benevolent who makes just laws that cause unspeakable joy, come out depending on which filter you have over your mind.

    You wrote,

    Unless, of course, you’re viewing them through the lens of…revelations

    There are three filters to choose from. God’s perspective (the word of God), man’s perspective (traditions, precepts, philosophies, customs and commandments of men), and the devil’s sinful perspective. If you put on the devil’s filter, and look at the word of God, you will reject it. If you put on man’s filter, and the filter is correct, you may accept the word of God when you look at it, but if the filter is incorrect, you will reject the word of God when you look at it. If you put on God’s filter, you will reject everything that pertains to the devil and all incorrect traditions of men.

    One of the incorrect traditions among men is that the word of God is compartmentalized, or bounded (limited) while that which comes from men is boundless, encompassing all that we know or will know; this is continually being added to, whereas the word of God is fixed and limited and stagnant, dealing with former times and former contexts. Therefore, which filter do we put on first, that of God or that of man? Man’s filter, of course (according to this view), since man’s filter gives us additional variables to take into account when analyzing the word of God, such as sexism, social systems, political systems, the sciences and all the rest.

    The filter you put on colors what you look at. Your perspective on the word of God will change depending on whether you are wearing the devil’s filter, God’s filter, man’s incorrect filter or man’s correct filter, just as putting on sunglasses alters the appearance of the Sun. The correctness or incorrectness of man’s filter only reveals itself if you are wearing God’s filter. It is impossible to tell whether a tradition or philosophy of man is correct or incorrect while wearing a man-made filter.

    The man-made filter labels everything it sees. That’s a lion, that’s economics, that’s sexism, that’s genetics, etc., and then assigns a value to the label, such as good, bad, or some other value, based upon some man-made standard. It does the same when the word of God is viewed through them. Incorrect man-made filters call something that is good (under God’s filter) bad and something that is bad (under God’s filter) good, in their valuations. (In other words, the assigned values are incorrect.) They also label the divine as not divine, while labeling the non-divine as divine. (In other words, the labels themselves are incorrect.)

    Cosmopolitan men wear the shades of men, filtering whatever they see through the body of world-wide, human knowledge. We call them worldly for this very reason. They never take off these lenses.

    Saints and prophets, on the other hand, never take off God’s filters, using the word of God as a sort of Urim and Thummim by which to judge all things. A tradition or philosophy or precept of men is only acceptable to a prophet or saint if it is correct. If it is incorrect, they denounce it. If it is correct, they leave it alone, to the agency of men.

    Now, I can show these principles through the scriptures and expound more fully, but hopefully what I’ve written here is enough to connect the rest of the dots.

  167. Now, I can show these principles through the scriptures and expound more fully, but hopefully what I’ve written here is enough to connect the rest of the dots.

    No need — what you said made sense.

    You said:

    Autism has a strong genetic basis whereas homosexuality has no basis, whatsoever, in genetics. Autism, therefore, is not agency-based. One who is not autistic cannot choose to be autistic and one who is autistic cannot choose to not be autistic. Like you described in a comment above, one simply “discovers” that they are autistic through testing.

    but you had also said earlier:

    As agents unto ourselves, we choose everything, but many of our choices escape our notice.

    So what about alcoholism [or other addictions to self-medicating drugs]? It has a strong genetic basis — but it’s a pattern of behavior that is not inherited through any haplotype of alleles [meaning alcoholic parents tend to have children who become alcoholics with very strong correlation — but there’s not a “gene” the parent is passing on].

    If “genetic-basis” removes something from an “agency-basis” — then does one “discover” they’re an alcoholic [because of the inheritance pattern of the addiction] or do they choose to have an addictive “lifestyle”/alcoholic behaviors [since there’s no genes that “make” someone born as an alcoholic]?

  168. So what about alcoholism [or other addictions to self-medicating drugs]? It has a strong genetic basis — but it’s a pattern of behavior that is not inherited through any haplotype of alleles [meaning alcoholic parents tend to have children who become alcoholics with very strong correlation — but there’s not a “gene” the parent is passing on].

    And obese parents tend to have children who become obese, and parents who wear eyeglasses tend to have children who end up needing eyeglasses, etc. There is more than one variable for why this is. The dispositions of the parents are “passed on” to the children, along with genetics, but dispositions are not necessarily genetic. (They may have a spiritual basis.) So, a mother who divorces her husband and cuts off all contact with him will inevitably watch in amazement as the children she had by him end up doing the very same things he did, without having had any contact with him. There is also the imitative nature of children that comes into play, as well as other factors.

    Btw, I put “passed on” in quotes because it may be that the various lineages have similar dispositions because of pre-mortal groupings of people of similar dispositions. Thus, those born to a tribe are similar not because they inherited their dispositions from an ancestor, but because they were chosen (foreordained) to be born in that tribe in the heavens above due to the similarity they had to the other spirits who were also to be born in that tribe. The earthly groupings (lineages) correspond to already formed heavenly groupings, which are based on similar traits.

    Alcoholism isn’t something that can only afflict someone disposed to it, but can afflict anyone who consumes sufficient quantities of alcohol over a specific period of time. It is considered a disease and so you can “catch it” by subjecting the body to the environment that produces its effect. Alcoholism, addictions to drugs, etc., cause the body to react in specific ways to the stimulus, and to adapt as a survival strategy. Instead of the alcohol or drugs producing death, life is extended by adapting to the poison through addiction. Bodies that are not able to adapt, die. Thus, the disposition to alcoholism may be in actuality evidence that one’s body is able to adapt quicker to poisons that kill. We know that administering a poison or toxin by degrees can cause anyone’s body to adapt to it, so this may be a true principle.

    When I wrote, “As agents unto ourselves, we choose everything,” this includes all our choices, both mortal and pre-mortal. It is reasonable to assume that our pre-mortal existence was not limited as we are here on Earth. The future is unknowable to us, for here we walk by faith, but there we walked by sight. That surely must include future sight, or the ability to see visions of the future. This gift would leave us without any excuse of “not knowing what we were getting ourselves into.” Knowing the conditions that we would be subject to would give us a choice whether to go through mortality or not. If the Lord is a pattern in this (Alma 7:13), and not unique, then we all saw our future privations, and chose to undergo them anyway “according to the flesh” in order to get the prize.

    If “genetic-basis” removes something from an “agency-basis” — then does one “discover” they’re an alcoholic [because of the inheritance pattern of the addiction] or do they choose to have an addictive “lifestyle”/alcoholic behaviors [since there’s no genes that “make” someone born as an alcoholic]?

    Alcoholism and other addictive behaviors are chosen, unless, of course, one is strapped down and poison is administered in degrees until the body adapts by creating addiction. In that case, our agency is infringed upon by someone else.

    Mortal life is, by its very nature, designed to be a limitation to our agency, in order that we may walk by faith and exercise faith to overcome afflictions. The genetic dice is thrown and sometimes what comes out isn’t exactly the ideal. There are many variables, including defective genes passed on, environmental toxins that alter body chemistry, etc. We may be like those Jaredite kings who were born in captivity and lived their entire lives a prisoner, dying in captivity. One’s agency may be curtailed in many different ways. But that speaks of only the privations of this life, which we chose to potentially endure or pass through in the pre-mortal sphere. So even though a “genetic-basis” seems like there was no agency involved, there was. God cannot subject us to anything we do not agree to, or have not previously agreed to. Everything must, of necessity, be a choice or be chosen by us, at some point in our existence, for God cannot force anything upon anyone, without becoming a tyrant Himself.

  169. Now, I can show these principles through the scriptures and expound more fully, but hopefully what I’ve written here is enough to connect the rest of the dots.

    No need

    The last couple of months I’ve felt like I have already written a bunch of blog posts in these comments, each comment being essentially the length of a single post, so I haven’t felt the urge to write any real blog posts, nevertheless, I’ve actually wanted for quite some time (years) to expound on this principle. Expounding, though, mentally tires me out. So, I feel like I’ve expounded at length on this topic of SSMP and so for other topics, such as the relationship of the traditions of men to the gospel, I just don’t have the energy to expound them.

    Because of the exertion it requires on my part to put things into my own words in order that others may understand some new idea they never heard of, sometimes I’m just content to leave certain concepts floating around in my brain without verbalizing them or writing them down. This topic, in particular, I’ve always felt was important to address and comprehend, but a lot of stuff just appears self-evident to me and my laziness gets the better of me when I find that someone doesn’t see things like I do. My preferred method of teaching a principle is just to read to people some passages from the scriptures which I feel adequately addresses the topic in question without me unfolding the meaning to them. Inevitably, though, that never works, and everyone becomes even more confused than before. This whole blog, then, is uncharacteristic of me, in that I’ve tried to explain things, because if I just put up the scriptures, without explanation, it would get lost on people. But your mind, I think, is such that you probably would be able to process a post without explanation. So, even though you say there is no need, I will give you some scriptures.

    JST Mark 7:1-13. Incorrect traditions have power to make the word of God of none effect.
    Mosiah 1:5. Incorrect traditions cause men to disbelieve the word of God and to remain ignorant. There are very many other scriptures that illustrate this principle, too.
    Alma 24:7. Nephite missionaries had a two-fold mission: convince Lamanites their traditions were incorrect and preach the gospel. Mormon missionaries must follow the same pattern when dealing with incorrect Gentile philosophies (Colossians 2:8).
    1 Corinthians 2:11. The word of God can only be comprehended by the word of God, which is the sword of the Spirit of God.
    Helaman 16:15-22. Incorrect traditions invent mundane explanations for miracles.

    And so on and so forth. You probably could follow this thought to completion, but others would likely end up arguing with me over the need for applying a host of methodologies in order to understand the real meaning or significance of an “inspired” text. In other words, the real reasons why Joseph Smith “made up” all these “divinely inspired,” fictional words, or some other theory that calls into question Restoration claims.

  170. A recent post at The Vigilant Citizen, Gigantic Pentagram Found in Kazakhstan – Can Be Seen in Google Maps, made me think of SSMP, the topic of this post. In particular, what Manly P. Hall is quoted as saying about “perverted power” seems to apply:

    “In symbolism, an inverted figure always signifies a perverted power. The average person does not even suspect the occult properties of emblematic pentacles. The black magician cannot use the symbols of white magic without bringing down upon himself the forces of white magic, which would be fatal to his schemes. He must therefore distort the hierograms so that they typify the occult fact that he himself is distorting the principles for which the symbols stand. Black magic is not a fundamental art; it is the misuse of an art. Therefore it has no symbols of its own. It merely takes the emblematic figures of white magic, and by inverting and reversing them signifies that it is left-handed. A good instance of this practice is found in the pentagram, or five-pointed star, made of five connected lines. This figure is the time-honored symbol of the magical arts, and signifies the five properties of the Great Magical Agent, the five senses of man, the five elements of nature, the five extremities of the human body. By means of the pentagram within his own soul, man not only may master and govern all creatures inferior to himself, but may demand consideration at the hands of those superior to himself.

    The pentagram is used extensively in black magic, but when so used its form always differs in one of three ways: The star may be broken at one point by not permitting the converging lines to touch; it may be inverted by having one point down and two up; or it may be distorted by having the points of varying lengths. When used in black magic, the pentagram is called the “sign of the cloven hoof,” or the footprint of the Devil. The star with two points upward is also called the “Goat of Mendes,” because the inverted star is the same shape as a goat’s head. When the upright star turns and the upper point falls to the bottom, it signifies the fall of the Morning Star.”

    – Manly P. Hall, The Secret Teachings of All Ages

    I am also reminded of the “Because it hardens the heart.” post, which also speaks of perversion. The Vigilant Citizen post makes me wonder if SSMP can be looked at from an occult perspective, as a means of gaining occult power. I wonder if anyone has attempted to filter it through occult lenses? I wonder if new information could be drawn out by such an exercise?

  171. There is new spirtual insight I’m discovering along this thread of comments, it affirms to me the word in the scriptures as found in these passages: Luke1:37, Exodus 4:11, John 9:3, while it tackles issues such as same gender attraction being agency-based; mentioned epigenetics which I think might be contrasted to the Kinsey scale; “coming unto Christ” as an invitation to all inspite of our inclinations and etc., and reminds me recently of Pope Francis’ inspired statement: “If someone is gay and he searches for the Lord and has good will, who am I to judge?”(http://ideas.time.com/2013/07)

  172. A few of these are from the Vigilant Citizen blog and ALL of them are images of LDS Church temples and other sites. So how does General Masonic Authority, Manly P. Hall’s in-depth study of the occult square with LDS use of inverted pentagrams?

    null

    null

    https://www.google.com/search?q=pentagram+nauvoo+temple&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ei=nnYJUrfHDuGqyAGu5YGADg&ved=0CDQQsAQ&biw=1157&bih=568#facrc=_&imgdii=_&imgrc=rantDU3hJTwpeM%3A%3B3ZT83ukOoZpo3M%3Bhttp%253A%252F%252Flifeafterministry.files.wordpress.com%252F2010%252F12%252Fnauvoo-2005-022.jpg%3Bhttp%253A%252F%252Flifeafterministry.com%252F2011%252F09%252F19%252Fnauvoo-and-salt-lake-temples%252F%3B2048%3B1536

  173. “Lucy(fer)…jew got some ‘splainin’ to do!”

  174. See Mormonism and temples/Inverted Stars on LDS Temples

    Pertinent excerpt:

    A connection between the “inverted pentagram” and Satan “is almost certainly a 19th century invention by Eliphas Levi,” who was a “defrocked priest.”[6] He did not begin publishing references to this idea until 1854, a decade after the death of the Prophet Joseph Smith.

    See also Occult Symbols on LDS Temples??

    SymbolDictionary.net says,

    “It was not until the twentieth century that the pentagram became associated with Satanism, probably due to misinterpretation of symbols used by ceremonial magicians.”

    Anthony Larson commented on the above post and wrote:

    The temple symbols are not occult; they are ancient. Christianity discarded them long ago because they seemed to have nothing to do with religion and spirituality. But, appearances can be deceiving. Because Joseph Smith restored the primitive church, he also erected temples with the proper, ancient symbolism without and within. Those symbols are a silent testament to the validity of his calling.

    In conclusion, the inverted pentagram used in connection with Satanism is an alteration of what it previously represented. Vigilant Citizen, not knowing the ancient use of the symbols, is simply taking the modern occult- or Masonic- assigned meanings and applying them to something of a much more ancient date, context and meaning, hence his misunderstanding (and perpetuation of the general public’s misunderstanding) of temple symbolism. So, this is a non-issue made to seem nefarious by people’s ignorance of the facts.

    Of course, people will continue to associate these temple symbols with either Satanism (Baphomet) or Masonry (the Five Points of Fellowship), and lay both meanings on the LDS, but the symbol and its temple meaning is still yet more ancient than both of those. In other words, the Masons and the satanists borrowed their symbols from more antiquated sources and assigned new meanings. Joseph used the same ancient symbols but assigned them the original meanings and uses, given to him by revelation, and so gets accused of plagiarism. And so it goes, round and round.

  175. For anyone concerned about Masonry and Mormonism, see Jeff Lindsey’s FAQ:

    Questions About the LDS Temple Ceremony and Masonry

    Okay, now back to the topic of marriage equality. Sorry for the diversion, Justin.

  176. Good of you to provide context rather than just conveniently putting forth quotes to support your equation of homosexuality with evil.

  177. Sorry for the diversion, Justin.

    I feel that a comment thread is wasted if it doesn’t have at least one diversion.

  178. Anarchist icon on this blog resembles the pentagram, but looks so gangster, iconic, novel, rebel, occult, modernly cultic, and anarchic…that makes everybody glance at it and then to me(lol)…

    Matthew 9:4-5-6

  179. if you’re really looking for some satanic symbols look at your local po,lice. the seven pointed star has always been used for summoning demons, and ask any cop whether they can make decisions about who gets arrested or not and they’ll tell you “its not my call” meaning “i have no responsibility or agency of any kind. i only follow orders” the agency makes all decisions for them. sounds like somebody’s plan! and everyday in utah there are more and more police officers seeking to throw innocent people into prison for growing flowers and mushrooms, or not having the proper identification, or not having paid for registration or insurance of all kinds. i am surrounded by police everywhere i go, just like samuel said

    ” Behold, we are surrounded by demons, yea, we are encircled about by the angels of him who hath sought to destroy our souls. “

  180. I wonder if brother Oaks’ talk today about reproduction and marriage will create another firestorm? I didn’t watch the talk, but was only able to read a summary of it. Perhaps it was not as specific as the summary made it out to be.

  181. Then again, maybe it was.

  182. oaks and crew are terrified of legal gay marriage, since will inevitably lead to legal polygamy, and they will lose all moral high ground over fundamentalists, and everyone will say “hey what the hell?” about them keeping legally married polygamists in african and middle eastern countries from baptism. they’ll probably still want to keep polygamy out of the church. every rich white higher-up in their supposed church leadership i’ve ever talked to about it has basically the same thing to say. “thank goodness we’re not asked to make the same sacrifices today!” “it was a mistake” “god wanted that only for a specific short time period” and some will come out and say directly what others believe secretly in their hearts “our ancestors were wrong and were motivated solely by their lust”

    it will sure be an awkward conversation when our dead ancestors show up with all their wives and ask why they won’t be allowed to take the sacrament or enter into the temple

  183. Why is it the possibility that Oaks, et al., are doing as the Lord asked of them never enters the realm of discourse? What makes you so damned sure that they are not doing the Lord’s will that you are willing to risk the condemnation of God for persecuting His servants, if so they be, to rail against Oaks, et al.?

  184. oaks and crew are terrified of legal gay marriage, since will inevitably lead to legal polygamy, and they will lose all moral high ground over fundamentalists

    I’ve said before that I think it’s obvious that legalized polygamy will follow on the heels of legalized same-gender marriages [the non-LDS conservative Christians will tell you as much] — but I’ve gone even further and predicted that, should the church start solemnizing any other forms of marriage once they’re all legalized — then they’d go with monogamous, same-gender marriages first, while continuing to cite Official Declaration 1 as reason against all the polygamous ones.

    I think they shut the door so hard on polygamy that there’s no turning back [in their minds], and they’ll go with monogamous gay marriages before they’d ever revert back to polygamous heterosexual ones.

  185. More evidence of a firestorm?

  186. “Why is it the possibility that Oaks, et al., are doing as the Lord asked of them never enters the realm of discourse? What makes you so damned sure that they are not doing the Lord’s will that you are willing to risk the condemnation of God for persecuting His servants, if so they be, to rail against Oaks, et al.?”

    same reason i’m sure televangelists and cardinals arent doing the will of god. by their fruits ye shall know them. shopping malls, no revelation, no translations, ignoring the book of enoch which came forth as prophecied by joseph “These things were all written in the book of Enoch, and are to be testified of in due time.”, no desire to build zion, no attempt to gather the saints, no attempts to reconcile with the other mormon churches, the highest inactivity rate of all time, priestcraft in the form of deseret book, and give it 10 years and they’ll straight up shake hands with the catholic church

  187. Today this scripture struck me:

    And now I would that ye might know, that after my father, Lehi, had made an end of prophesying concerning his seed, it came to pass that the Lord spake unto him again, saying that it was not meet for him, Lehi, that he should take his family into the wilderness alone; but that his sons should take daughters to wife, that they might raise up seed unto the Lord in the land of promise. (1 Ne. 7:1)

    The purpose of marriage (for these Lehites) is given as raising up seed unto the Lord. I don’t want to elaborate on this. I just want to keep it here for future reference, as a reminder to address it, perhaps, in the future.

  188. Thanks for the update, dallonj. I wonder what the next development in this will be? I would love to see all the Mormon polygamists groups start attending the LDS chapels, openly showing themselves as polygamists. They are no longer breaking any of the laws of man (nor of God), since they don’t use multiple state licenses, so it would be good to see them start to exert pressure on the church to accept polygamists as potential converts. In the new Gospel Topics article on the church website:

    Plural Marriage and Families in Early Utah

    the first paragraph erroneously states:

    The Bible and the Book of Mormon teach that the marriage of one man to one woman is God’s standard, except at specific periods when He has declared otherwise.

    I wish the fundies would return to our chapels and begin to publicly denounce this falsehood.

    Sorry for the threadjack, Justin.

  189. Firstly — threadjacks are always welcome. Secondly — it’s not even really one.

    As I said in conjunction with both this post and with the other one I did at Wheat and Tares that had the poll — I’m certain that legal same-gender marriages are going to happen and that legalized polygamous marriages [not just legal cohabitation] will follow on its heels. So this court decision is supporting that guess of mine.

    What will remain to be seen is what the LDS church will do with legalized same-gender and plural marriage families [not just the legally co-habitating ones]. Right now, I think they’ll hide behind a, “Well, you don’t have a valid marriage license“-defense — but once these non-hetero/monogamous couples come with legal marriage licenses from the state, my hunch has been that the Church is going to dump the male+female family rhetoric in exchange for doubling-down on “committed, monogamous couples” [leaving polygamists still as “apostates”, but accepting same-gender marriages].

  190. Fyi, Rock at PureMormonism recently published his views on same-sex marriage. His position is different than mine, on all accounts. I would love for the LDS to be polled on this issue to really find out how much of a division is among us.

  191. I wanted to put this here for my future reference — it’s an interesting TED video about the history/purposes of marriage.

    The History of Marriage

  192. I was curious the other day about something I had read in the book Fascinating Womanhood many years ago, and not finding a copy of it around, I did an Internet search but came up empty. Then I remembered there was a web site of some guy (Henry Makow) that created a board game (Scruples) whose writing indicated to me that he likely believed in FW, so when I searched for and finally found his web site again, I thought I’d look around since it had been a really long time since I was there last.

    Anyway, I came across two articles of his which piqued my interest by their titles. The first was:

    I am Homophobic (and you should be too!)

    In particular were these claims of his, which I had never before heard:

    I had always accepted the mass media’s portrayal of gays as a colorful minority like the Croatians, who have a special “sexual orientation.” They meet each other at their bars and do their thing. As long as they kept it within their own community, what did I care?

    But they don’t. To my surprise I recently learned that most gays prefer heterosexual males. My source is a book, The Caricature of Love, (1957), by Dr. Hervey Checkley, a clinical professor of psychiatry at the Medical College of Georgia.

    A gay friend also confirmed this fact to me. Google “straight men” and you will get almost 30 million results, most of them homosexual. Bottom line (excuse the pun) many homosexuals are predators.

    I also learned that many gays prefer youths, and these experiences often turn victimized children into homosexuals and distort their lives. A survey of readers of the gay magazine The Advocate indicated that 21% of respondents were sexually abused by an adult by age 15. This seems to be one way that homosexuals “propagate.”

    I do not know if either of these claims is true, but I’m now curious to double check his facts.

    Another article of his that I came across was:

    Feminism Can be Cured (If Diagnosed Early)

    In it he did, indeed, mention Fascinating Womanhood, as well as the following two web sites:

    Surrendered Wife

    Ladies Against Feminism

    It became apparent to me that none of these sources promote marriage equality. Instead they promote a marriage hierarchy. A third article of his that I read that day, as I perused his site, confirmed this point:

    All successful organizations are hierarchical. The heterosexual family is male dominated. If you wanted to destroy it, you promote equality. Our culture is doing this.

    Quoted from The Effect of Sexual Deprivation on Women (Encore)

    Then, today, I read a Mormon blog that linked to the following web site:

    Love and Respect

    which I had never heard of, which site makes the following claim:

    What is Love and Respect? We believe love best motivates a woman and respect most powerfully motivates a man. Research reveals that during marital conflict a husband most often reacts when feeling disrespected and a wife reacts when feeling unloved. We asked 7,000 people this question: when you are in a conflict with your spouse or significant other, do you feel unloved or disrespected? 83% of the men said “disrespected.” 72% of the women said, “unloved.” Though we all need love and respect equally, the felt need differs during conflict, and this difference is as different as pink is from blue!

    The site appears to be Christian-based, and uses the language of equality (“we all need love and respect equally”), while at the same time claiming unequal sexual perceptions during conflict. I’ll have to ask my wife that survey question and see what she says.

    Btw, I am putting this stuff here in case I decide to come back to it after further research.

  193. I find it odd, being an anarchist, and accepting someone who claims:

    All successful organizations are hierarchical.

    which I highly doubt is true.

    Also, I found:

    this difference is as different as pink is from blue!

    funny — given the fact that, in the latter 19th century, pink was considered the “boy color” [because of its similarity to red] and blue the “girl color” [because of depictions of the Virgin Mary in blue]. If they were trying to show some fundamental “unchangeableness” with respect to gender, then it seems to me that colors aren’t the best metaphor to use. Lol.

    The only other thing I’d add is that if someone is sexually attracted to children: i.e.,

    I also learned that many gays prefer youths, and these experiences often turn victimized children into homosexuals and distort their lives.

    then they aren’t homosexual — they’d be pedophilial.

  194. My wife answered the question, “disrespected.” So, she is in the 28%. I also asked another woman the same question and she answered, “neither.” I wonder, though, whether it would have been a different answer if it had been a written survey and they didn’t know that I was the one asking the question? In other words, I wonder if I “colored” the test, at all, by their familiarity with the “interviewer” and the familiarity of the “interviewer” with them? Would an anonymous survey produce different results?

    Btw, I used to have a friend who seriously thought that anything pink was of the devil. So he avoided FW like the plague, because it had a pink cover.

  195. Funny — I asked my wife today:

    when you are in a conflict with your spouse or significant other, do you feel unloved or disrespected?

    and she answered “disrespected” too. That could either mean that the original survey was no good — or it may just mean that you and I are disrespectful spouses during conflict. Lol.

  196. Lots of interesting thoughts and ideas here. I am a believer that polygamy/plural marriage was and is false doctrine. I have come to that conclusion after a lot of thought, scripture study, book and blog reading, pondering and prayer. I wrote a post on that issue here which I think proves from the BOM that polygamy is a false doctrine: http://gregstocks.wordpress.com/

    I also think the following scripture sheds a lot of light on this issue which has been pretty much overlooked.
    Doctrine and Covenants 93:33 For man is spirit. The elements are eternal, and spirit and element, inseparably connected, receive a fulness of joy;

    I think this verse is really telling us much more about what we
    will become after this life, which implies current church doctrine is false regarding the eternal plural marriage stuff and even the belief in
    eternal marriage, as it is taught.

    Look at the words “inseparably connected”.
    What does that mean to you?
    To me it means once we are resurrected and have an immortal body, made up of eternal elements, inseparably fused to our eternal
    spirits, we will not be anything like we are now, as humans.
    We won’t have blood or fluids or breathe and we won’t eat or drink. Thus we will have no eliminations of any kind as that would mean
    our elements and spirit are NOT inseparably connected, and God doesn’t lie.
    That also means we will not have sex, or at least not any kind of sex we have on earth, as sex entails fluid(elements) leaving our bodies and requires blood in order to be possible, among other things.
    If I am correct here, this effectively destroys any argument for plural marriage or eternal marriage associated with eternal child bearing.
    Releasing sperm and eggs from our resurrected bodies would Not be possible if elements and spirit are inseparably connected. So why would we even have them?
    And following that line of reasoning we would also most likely be neither male or female, since that is a function of being capable of procreating.
    The last part of this verse also seems to be saying that WHEN we become inseparably connected with element, we will have a fulness of joy . . . . . . without being married.

  197. Justin, I have put a right to marry in the NAC. This article:

    http://www.thepublicdiscourse.com/2015/06/14960/

    says there is no such right.

    What do you think? Is there a right to marry? Will encoding such a right be too much for people? Perhaps I’ll put up the exact wordage I’ve used, or send you an email with it, and you can tell me what you think…

  198. I think it depends on what you mean by “marry”. If we mean the free-will association of two people to co-habitate, have sexual relations, and raise their children — then, yeah, every person has the fundamental right to be left alone in how they do that. But if we mean the civil recognition of such a relationship [where a state supplies duties and benefits and other people are obliged to behave differently because you are “married”], then I’d say nay because it’s dependent on the existence of a state [and therefore cannot be “fundamental”].

  199. Lol. Well, do you think society would be destroyed if one were to assert a “fundamental” (not “civil”) right to marry and force the States to acknowledge it? Would this be too humbling to the State for people to accept?

  200. I think all that it would require to “maintain order” would be that we come up with a different way to account for property inheritance. Disputes over who gets what when someone dies would be harder to settle without the State licensing marriages and keeping certificates of birth with declared parentage.

    But, for the most part, we do accept the fundamental-type of marriage I talked about. It doesn’t cause any upheaval, for example, when non-married couples live together and raise children. I think the way to undermine the State’s civil marriage rules [and thus help bolster our fundamental right to marry without their involvement] would be for everyone to just keep doing what they’re currently doing, but do it without ever seeking a marriage license. The state can still give birth certificates [where the family, even if it’s polygamous, can declare whoever they choose to be designated as the “father”], social security numbers, and all that — but if the family wants to be multihusband-multiwife/monogamous or be mixed gender/homosexual, they’re free to make those association without worrying about the State’s “acknowledgement” via the licensing system.

  201. SCOTUS ruling — predictions?

  202. SCOTUS ruling — predictions?

    I’ve got no predictions. However, I am curious what kind of an effect the NAC would have on SSM, and also on abortion and other issues, if it were to become the supreme law of the land, given, for example, Article X, Section 5, and Article III, Sections 1-3, and Article II, Section 2.2, etc.

  203. There is also Article II, Section 2.7 (of the NAC), which might also come into play for SSM. I put a lot of things into the NAC which potentially changes the entire playing field. But I’m no lawyer, so who knows if any of these things are as air-tight as I tried to make them?


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