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The Theology of Sexual Experimentation?


By Carman Bradley

Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another.  They exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshipped and served created things rather than the Creator - who is forever praised. Amen.  For this reason God gave them over to degrading passions; for their women exchanged the natural function for that which is unnatural and in the same way also the men abandoned the natural function of the women and burned in desire toward one another, men with men committing indecent acts and receiving in their own persons the due penalty of their error. (Romans 1:24-27)

Some believe that one’s sexual orientation is discovered, not chosen.  Believing Bailey’s argument for inversion, gay “Christians” have chosen to interpret Paul’s definition of “natural” and “unnatural acts” (Romans 1: 24-27) as meaning that a lesbian or gay should not attempt to live a heterosexual lifestyle and heterosexuals should not venture outside opposite sex relations.  Woe that life could be simplified into such tidy political categories, legalistic moral interpretations, and lustful fantasies.  Paradoxically, queer theology argues for sexual fluidity and against these notions.  Queer and gay-“Christian” notions contribute nothing but deception to the person who wonders about the consequence of sexual experimentation.  The script for experimental homosexuality does not always end as tidily as this interviewee claimed in a 1984 study by Brecher:

‘When I was about 15, the six or eight boys who hung together indulged in a summer of group masturbation, oral sex, and attempts at anal sex. This passed as soon as we discovered girls’.[i]

How is a wavering youth to resolve his or her identity without exploring both sexual terrains?  Is finding one’s orientation as simple as the interviewee (above) makes it out?  Why is he part of a research study on homosexuality later in life, if the experimental attraction is “passed”?  Do you believe violating God’s design is that free of consequence - just experiment with the sexes - attempt some anal sex, a little oral sex, some vaginal sex, and then decide?

Albert the Great (Albertus Magnus, 1193-1280, scientist, philosopher, and theologian, teacher of Thomas Aquinas), in a short reference, gives five reasons to avoid indulging in homosexual behavior:

This is the most detestable of practices: it proceeds from a burning frenzy; it has a disgusting foulness; those addicted to it seldom succeed in shaking off the vice; and, finally, it is as contagious as any disease, rapidly spreading from one to another.[ii]

It is to the last reason - the matter of contagion, that we need focus on.  The more contemporary and pragmatic Phyllis Chesler, renowned author on lesbian feminism, argues, as do many others, that anyone can become bisexual, if not, homosexual, just by acquiring enough experience.  She cites the following passage from Gilbert D. Bartell, Group Sex, 1971, in illustration:

When a couple is new to swinging and the woman has never been exposed to another woman, she usually says that she would find this repulsive and cannot imagine it.  After the first two or three parties where she sees women obviously enjoying each other, she is likely to modify her stand and say, ‘I do enjoy having a woman work on me, but I could never be active with another women.’  Then, when she has been in swinging for several months and attending many parties, she may well say, ‘I enjoy everything and anything with a women, either way she wants to go.’…at large open parties we observed that almost all the women were engaged in homosexual activity with obvious satisfaction, especially if a younger group is involved.[iii]

Alfred Kinsey claimed the first few sexual encounters could be crucial to influencing the direction of sexual preference.  Negative experiences drove people away from particular practices and positive experiences reinforced behaviors.  A pro-heterosexual web site had this to say about experimentation:

We do not recommend trying GBLTQ out.  Having sex with another of the same sex will not tell you whether you are gay or lesbian!  It will tell you your body is designed to respond to physical and sexual touch, indeed gross deception.[iv]

In their study of bisexuals at the San Francisco Bi-center, Martin Weinberg et al. cite experimentation (they used “encouragement”) as instrumental in leading people to initially adopt the label bisexual.  The opportunity for experimentation often came from a partner who already defined himself as bisexual:

We had been together two or three years at the time – he began to define as bisexual….[He] encouraged me to do so as well.  He engineered a couple of threesomes with another woman.  Seeing one other person who had bisexuality as an identity that fit them seemed to be a real encouragement. (F)[v]

Women were more likely to be pressured into experimentation. Weinberg discovered that occasionally the “encouragement” bordered on coercion as the men in their lives wanted to engage in a “ménage-a-trois” or group sex:

I had a male lover for a year and a half who was familiar with bisexuality and pushed me towards it.  My relationship with him brought it up in me.  He wanted me to be bisexual because he wanted to be in a threesome.  He was also insanely jealous of my attractions to men, and did everything in his power to suppress my opposite-sex attractions.  He showed me a lot of pictures of naked women and played on my reactions.  He could tell that I was aroused by pictures of women and would talk about my attractions while we were having sex…He was twenty years older than me.  He was very manipulative in a way.  My feelings for females were there and [he was] almost forcing me to act on my attractions…(F)[vi]

Weinberg found in his San Francisco study that encouragement also came from sex positive organizations, primarily the Bisexual Center, but also places like San Francisco Sex Information (SFSI), the Pacific Center, and the Institute for Advanced Study of Human Sexuality.

After studying the development of sexual preference among bisexuals, Weinberg concludes that generally sexual attraction preceded sexual behavior regardless of same- or opposite-sex interest.  However, heterosexual development appeared to be completed before homosexual development, suggesting that for many bisexuals, homosexuality is an “add-on” to an already-developed heterosexuality.  Moreover, bisexuals experience a mix of feelings, attractions, and behaviors during their sexual development that they cannot satisfactorily understand by adopting the identity “heterosexual” or “homosexual.”  This means that they are open to the effects of further sexual experiences that these exclusive identities would tend to deny.[vii]

An open gender schema allows them to react sexually to a wider range of stimuli.  Developing an open gender schema seems to involve a “discovery” of attractions to the same sex.  Some bisexuals experience this as the discovery of something that has always been there, now recognized and celebrated.  Others see it as a complement to their growing personalities, a new potential they have discovered - for example, in the case of exclusively heterosexual women who adopt feminism and become open to lesbianism.  Various people may experience the “add-on” nature of bisexuality differently.  Weinberg discovered most persons engaging in bisexual behavior do not take on the identity “bisexual.”  Such persons somehow temporarily set the gender schema aside to avoid the implications of their bisexual behavior.  Thus we find the “heterosexual” married man who frequents public toilets for homosexual sex, the male hustler who has a girl friend, and the “heterosexual” married woman who engages in homosexual sex at a swing parties.  The “add-on” nature of bisexuality may be experienced differently by various people.  Weinberg suggests that for men, more widespread involvement in early same-sex behaviors makes the “add-on” experience more likely to be one of continuity.  For women, more early emphasis on emotional exploration makes experiences more likely to be of personal growth.[viii]

Weinberg found evidence of substantial change in an individual’s sexual preference.  For example, one study noted the effect of the feminist movement on women’s sexuality, teaching some women that relating both emotionally and sexually to other women is an option. Another study focused on a group of women who were all heterosexual in behavior and identity before participating in swinging.  As a response to their husbands’ wishes and their observations of other women, they became involved in sex with other women, and all of them eventually identified themselves as bisexual.  Their bisexuality, moreover, was an addition to their previous heterosexual interest, and they still preferred heterosexual sex.[ix]

Based on insights into the ways in which early sexual experiences are related to subsequent sexual behavior, Weinberg says many persons have a continuing bisexual potential throughout their lives, regardless of the sexual identity they eventually adopt.  Persons are born not only with a bisexual potential but the potential to eroticize – learn to give sexual meaning to – many things.  What stands out, according to Weinberg, is “the relationship between one’s earliest sexual feelings and behaviors and one’s subsequent sexual preference.”  Early experiences and attractions seem predictive of later sexual preference.[x] Weinberg concludes:

No theory of sexual preference should ignore the mundane feature of sexual pleasure.  Unfortunately, many of them do.  We believe that sexual pleasure in its various forms is ordinarily the main reason people have sex.  The role of pure physical pleasure seems much clearer for men.  Men, in all three preference groups in our research, had their first sexual experience much earlier than women.  Men thus learn early that sexual pleasure is possible with both sexes, and that given the great difficulty of getting female partners, other men may be acceptable substitutes.  This accounts for why there seemed to be a more genital focus on same-sex behavior of bisexual men. [xi]

Weinberg writes that sexual identities – naming oneself or being named in terms of the sex of the partner one chooses – are crucial to sexual preference.  Sexual identity gives meaning to a person’s sexual feelings and behaviors by defining these as signs that the individual is a special type of person – in our culture a “heterosexual,” “homosexual,” or “bisexual.”  For persons dealing with the confusions that dual attractions can bring, a sexual identity can stabilize the sexual preference.   If you know what you are it organizes what you do.  And it allows for social support from others who identify similarly.  Sexual identities provide the social “cement” which sets sexual preference in place.[xii]

If bisexuality is a universal potential, then adopting the sexual identity of “heterosexual” (“straight”) or “homosexual” (“gay” or “lesbian”) can restrict a person from becoming “bisexual.”  That is, people who adopt an exclusive sexual identity may not even think about entering into sexual relations with both sexes, because it would violate their sense of who they are.  This leads them to interact socially primarily with like-minded others, further reinforcing their sexual identity.  Nonetheless, Weinberg found that there are “no watertight compartments between many ‘heterosexuals,’ ‘bisexuals,’ and ‘homosexuals,’ but rather overlaps.”  In their sexual profiles, the “somewhat mixed” heterosexual and “somewhat mixed” homosexual types were quite similar to two of their bisexual types.  This traffic at the “boundaries” is enough to raise questions of identity.  For such people, the identity they adopt explains their subsequent lives more clearly than does their behavior.  Here Weinberg explained that bisexuals found it impossible to make sense of their sexuality by adopting either a heterosexual or homosexual identity.  On the other hand, because the bisexual identity as a social category is not well defined or readily available to them, many experienced confusion in coming to grips with their sexuality and defined themselves as “bisexual” at a relatively late age.  Weinberg writes:

We believe that the study of sexual identities – where they come from, how they are put together, how they are disseminated, how they are different among different cultures and groups, and how they change over time – is indispensable to any theory of sexual preference. Equally important is understanding how individuals relate to these social categories.  For example, many of the ‘bisexuals’ in our study believed that they had to have regular sexual relations with both men and women to be bisexual.  Ending up in an exclusive relationship, as many of them did, often called into question their identity as bisexual.  Not being sexually active with both sexes contemporaneously seemed to some of them to breach the prevalent social definition of ‘bisexuality.’[xiii]

Thus choice of sexual identity, or selection of a particular perspective (identity) not only provides a context in which to make sense of one’s particular feelings and behaviors, but the identity one chooses in turn has important consequences for one’s continuing sexual preference.  Furthermore, Weinberg shows how “choice” of sexual preference is influenced significantly by “opportunity”:

The swing club was inconspicuously located in a two story house along a neighborhood street in Oakland.  While we saw many scenes worth reporting, we will describe one scene to convey the atmosphere of the setting and the relevance for our research.  Three people were involved: a man was engaging in rear entry vaginal intercourse with a woman who was performing oral sex on another woman.  At the same time other women were engaging in oral sex with women who had engaged in sex with men earlier.  There were no men engaging in same-sex activity (which was generally not allowed in swing clubs).  We subsequently found that a number of the women in our study had first engaged in bisexuality at a swing house.  This clued us into the importance of different opportunities in the development of bisexuality.[xiv]

At this point, one wonders what gay-theology has to say to youth about experimental opportunistic sex and God’s will.  The boundaries in orthodox Christianity are clear and feasible – no sex before monogamous marriage, no sex outside of marriage, no experimental sex.  For the past two to three thousand years sexual performance (eros and pleasure) in bed, in the bushes, or wherever, has never been condoned as a factor in Christian mate (partner) selection.   Imagine you are the pastor at a Metropolitan Community Church (MCC) or any pro-gay “Christian” church.  You are holding a boys or girls youth (12-15 year-olds) discussion group on sexuality.  What will you tell them is permissible?

One possible, however unlikely, MCC response – experimental sex is not God’s will.  “But how will we discover our orientation?” asks a youth.   In time you will mature and fall in love with a man, or a woman, or both.  You will choose to marry one or both.  After God’s matrimonial blessing you can have sex.  The two or three of you will be bound for life.  The two or three shall become one.  [I don’t think so].

A more likely MCC response - experimental sex is a natural process which allows you to find out your sexuality.  God has not necessarily indicated your sexuality by the genitalia you have; therefore, only through trial and error will your true orientation be revealed.  Since the ability to experiment is constrained by the “opportunities” that come along, same-sex activities usually come first.  An astute youth, with no particular leanings either way, naively asks, “If same-sex experimentation gives us great pleasure, how much experimenting should we do before checking out the opposite sex?”  Another adds, “I thought we had to get married before engaging in sex?”  One answers before the pastor can respond, “It is okay to have pre-marital sex as long as you are honest and tell the partner you are just experimenting.”  “Does it matter if the trials are done in a group?”  “Is it okay to get an older person to explain how and what we are to do?” “So it is permissible, even if I think at the time that I am straight, to check out gay or lesbian sex, just to make sure?” “What if we enjoy both?” “Pastor what is lust?” The pastor is just about to say something when the question is asked, “Is there anything we shouldn’t do in order to please Jesus?”  The pastor stays silent.  Like so many doctrinal issues in an “inclusive” and “compromised” church, it is better to just not talk about them.

The English public school system offers a revealing historical insight into the ecology of elementary school boys, with little opportunity for heterosexual sex and who are operating in an internal environment where same-sex behavior is not taboo.  Alec Waugh, author of Public School Life: Boys, Parents, Masters, writes:

In this environment there is nothing unnatural about the attraction exercised by a small boy over an elder one.  A small boy is the nearest approach possible to the feminine ideal.  Indeed a small boy at a Public School has many of the characteristics that a man would hope and expect to find in a woman.  He is small, weak, and stands in need of protection.  He is remote as a woman is, in that he moves in a different circle of life, with different friends, different troubles, different ambitions.  He is an undiscovered country.  The emotion is genuine and usually takes the elder boy by surprise.

Robert Graves, the poet and mythographer, wrote:

In English preparatory and public schools, romance is necessarily homosexual.  The opposite sex is despised and treated as something obscene.  Many boys never recover from this perversion.  For every born homosexual, at least ten permanent pseudo-homosexuals are made by the public school system; nine of those ten as honorably chaste and sentimental as I was.[xv]

Says Marjorie Garber, in Viceversa, the autobiographical description of the early-twentieth-century upper and upper-middle class English boy’s school and the “pseudo-homosexual life,” by Graves, is not the same as the postmodern phenomenon of the so-called “Straight Queer” or “Queer Straight;” the heterosexual who thinks it’s cool to be taken for a gay.  “Pseudo-homosexual” here is a technical term, introduced in the period by the sexologist Iwan Bloch to describe persons who have homosexual relations because they are in same-sex situations with no access to members of the other sex.[xvi]

Bloch describes in his survey of English history “an occasional apparent increase in homosexuality” that is driven by fashion and dissolute lifestyles, a “real epidemic increase in homosexual tendencies, which are sometimes manifested in a slight and uncertain fashion but, at other times are strongly roused and can lead to an apparent perversion of natural feeling.”  “Pseudo-homosexuality” was especially to be found in England among sailors, schoolboys and university students, mine and street workers, footballers, athletes, members of certain men’s and boys associations and the like – in short, a large percentage of the male population.  “Lack of intercourse with women, and especially indulgence in alcohol, here play an important part,” Bloch adds, as does the English men’s club, and “intensive cultivation of games, so like the cult of homosexuality among the sport-loving ancient Greeks.[xvii]

Garber writes, “So the male-bonding society of English life, at virtually all levels, is conducive to ‘pseudo-homosexuality.’”  How is the “pseudo” kind distinguishable from the real thing?  Presumably because the pseudo-homosexuals turn out to be (also) heterosexuals – that is, bisexuals.  Or what current sociology likes to describe as “sequential bisexuals” – people who have sex with same- and opposite-sex partners at different times in their lives.

Freud called such persons “contingent inverts,” who under certain circumstances like “inaccessibility of any normal sexual object” and “imitation” are “capable of taking as their sexual object someone of their own sex and deriving satisfaction from sexual intercourse with him” (no mention of her).  Inaccessibility of opposite sex partners and “imitation” (or “fashion”) were key parts of Bloch’s scheme, which he later renamed “secondary homosexuality.” Today such persons are more frequently described as “situational bisexuals,” or more accurately, as engaging in situational bisexuality.[xviii]

Fascination with the phenomenon of “pseudo-homosexuality” has been widespread.  Magnus Hirschild enumerated three classes of what he called “spurious inverts” (males prostitutes and blackmailers; good-natured or pitying souls who permitted themselves to be loved; and the inmates of same-sex schools, barracks, or prisons), while Havelock Ellis made short work of this attempt at classification.  Presuming that “the basis of the sexual life is bisexual,” he noted that some people have homosexual feelings so strong that they persist even in the presence of potential heterosexual love objects, while in others the homosexual responses are “eclipsed” by heterosexual desire.  “We could not, however, properly speak of the latter as anymore ‘spurious’ or ‘pseudo’ than the former,” Ellis declared roundly.  Desire was desire – there was nothing spurious or “pseudo” about it, despite the situation or “contingency” that had given it rise.  The body could respond, the heart could break.[xix]

Gore Vidal, Havelock Ellis and like minded observers may wish to declare the whole discussion of “real” and “pseudo” desire as indeed, “spurious” logic.  Genuine Christians, however, can little afford such liberal-mindedness.  Orthodox Christians contend that heterosexuality is the only authentic sexuality.  Gay and pro-gay “Christians” contend that true “inversion” is also God inspired and thus divinely authentic.  If for argument’s sake, we briefly accept both polar extremes as authentic, the problem surrounding how Christians are to discover and nurture their “true sexual nature” remains.  Nowhere in the Bible can be found support for any form of sexual experimentation.  Nowhere is “space” to be granted to the wavering youth, while he or she establishes the sexual desires that lead to greatest sexual fulfillment and peace.  As God-fearing Christians, what are we to say to our children about experimentation, if not NO?

A brief look into the life of Oscar Wilde reveals the potential outcome of wanton experimentation.  Marjorie Garber, described Oscar Wilde as this century’s paradigmatic founding figure of gay style, wit, culture, and sensibility.[xx] In writing about his conversion to homosexuality she described two “conversion narratives.” In one, homosexuality functions as a “phase,” while marriage provides the narrative goal.  In the second, the marriage comes first, as a “blindness” that is transcended by the discovery that one is “really gay.”  Nonetheless, in characterizing Wilde’s orientation experience she quoted gay author Johnathan Dollimore, who has written about Wilde extensively and perceptively.  His interpretation is one of a conversion by “experiential pleasure” leading to bisexuality.  Dollimore readily speaks of his own conversion narrative:

Because I’d never fantasized about that.  I never desired it.  When it happened it was just an incredible transformation…I can remember sitting down and thinking, look, if that degree of radical transformation in my sexual life is possible, where I become the unthinkable, anything is possible…So for me that was a conversion.  It changed everything.  And my life is still structured in relation to that revolutionary event.  So I can understand the conversion narrative.  What I would not tolerate, and what I would tease and be quite aggressive to is people who then embrace that sort of thing in the exclusionary identity politics mode.  You know, of saying: ‘I am now gay.  My whole life is that story.’ I just don’t believe that desire works like that.[xxi]

Says Dollimore:

Oscar Wilde had that kind of conversion narrative that I was talking about.  And one of the things I’ve argued in relation to Wilde is the tremendous power of that experience, when you identify yourself as having deviant desires.  And what a tremendous energy that gives you in terms of social critique.  The deviant desire of sensationality is his legacy.  That is the way that Wilde resonates endlessly to me.[xxii]

He further explains:

Unless we restrict our definition of bisexuality to mean only the mythical; ‘perfect bi,’ who desires men and women equally, Wilde was bisexual in his experience.  His ‘sexual preference’ became young men, and his marriage seems clearly to have been motivated at least in part by social and pecuniary concerns.  But to use gay/straight here as an on-off switch is to underestimate both Wilde and the complexity of human sexuality.  To say that Wilde was homosexual and not bisexual is to make a statement more indebted to politics than to biography.  It is seductive but not true.[xxiii]

There has been endless speculation about how Robbie Ross and Oscar Wilde first met.  The contention made by one of Wilde’s earliest biographers, Frank Harris, that it was in a public lavatory almost certainly hails from the wilder shores of that writer’s imagination. It is unclear when Ross first met Wilde. However, in 1886, on the brink of his brilliant career as a playwright, Wilde was ripe for transgression.  Constance (his wife) was pregnant with their second son and Wilde recoiled from her bloated, blotched appearance, so much at variance with his exaggerated Hellenic concept of slim-waisted beauty, she once was. Montgomery Hyde writes:

The man who said he could resist everything but temptation was simply seduced by the 17-year-old Robbie - his first ''boy.'' was Wilde's first homosexual encounter.[xxiv]

For Robbie, flirtation and seduction were savored as part of the spice and variety of life - something which Oscar Wilde was now determined to enjoy, with the energy of one who was making up for lost time. ‘Not content to spoon among available young men in his own circle, Wilde began to frequent male brothels; he boasted that he was ‘feasting with panthers.’’[xxv]

Oscar told his friend, the journalist and wit Reggie Turner, that this was the case.  Robbie himself later confirmed it to one of Wilde’s earliest biographers, Arthur Ransome.[xxvi]  Hyde reflects on the domestic situation at the Wilde Household, with Constance assuming Robbie is just a good border, and asks:

One wonders what was going through each protagonists’ mind as they sat down to dinner together in the evening, on those occasions when Oscar was not out of town.[xxvii]

The fact is gay theologians, such as the founder of Metropolitan Community Church (MCC), have done the same thing - had gay sex while his unsuspecting wife was next door.  Gay theology is predicated on giving no significance to the boundaries and bonds set by heterosexual marriage.  This being the case, one wonders why such significance is now given to “gay marriage.”  Indeed, we must ask do judgmental terms such as adultery and promiscuity exist in gay theology?  How would a MCC pastor have dealt with Oscar Wilde.  At the time of Wilde’s first experiment, what is a pastor to say to a married man with children, who is 15 years older than the seductive 17 year-old living in Wilde’s house?  What advice is to be given Constance?  What importance is to be given the heterosexual marriage bonds?  Finally, what guidance is to be offered as Wilde starts a second, a third, or any number of relationships?

Near the end of Wilde’s life, Bosie Douglas (his second key lover) gave this picture of a lost life:

He became a sort of show for the Bohemians of Paris; the sport and mock of the boulevard…He got his dinners on credit, and borrowed money from waiters.  His health was on the down grade in consequence of the intensification by alcohol of a terrible disease he had contracted.  He took to weeping and cursing at the slightest provocation, and, though his wit would flare out and his learning remained with him to the last, it was a poor wreck and shadow of himself which I saw…[xxviii]

What shall gay theologians say to a wife, when she wakes up to the fact that her husband still holds to fantasy and behavior, first nourished in early same-sex experimentation?

Just how experimentation contributes to lust is worth a brief study in its own right.  The status of this term “lust” in gay theology is another cognitive feat.  In a sex positive, liberated philosophy, lust has been eclipsed by the more non-judgmental term “eros.”  Ironically, now gay author and theologian Mel White, can be quoted in setting out the orthodox boundaries on “lust.”  Author of Lust: The Other Side of Love, White says:

…when I use the word lust, I mean any sexual thought or action that is potentially disobedient or dishonoring to God or potentially demeaning or destructive to people.  And when I use the phrase ‘struggle with lust,’ I mean those times when we are tempted, when we know the potential for lust in our own lives but are still deciding whether we will give in to lust or resist its pressure.[xxix]

White widens the definition of lust to include the action as well as the thought.  He writes:

It is common to define lust as something that happens only in the head.  When lust goes from thought to action, it is usually called only by the action’s name, for example: incest, rape, adultery, and the like.[xxx]

He uses the term to describe the lust process from thought through to action.  White says:

Lust is the common source of all the different actions, the power that keeps the action going, and the only word we have to describe the entire process.[xxxi]  Jesus taught His disciples not to make the dangerous distinction between lust as thought and lust as action.  If we see lust only as harmless sexual fantasy, we forget that the worst sexual crimes begin as harmless sexual fantasies in someone’s head.  By our casual and undisciplined approach to lust in its early stages, we miss the opportunity to control lust while control is still possible.[xxxii]

God warns against sexual lust, not because He hates His children to enjoy each other’s bodies, but because He wants to protect the marriage bed and He knows where sexual disobedience will end.  White gives the following Biblical illustration of lust and its consequences before God.  Taken from Numbers 25, the Israelites are on route to the Promised land:

Picture that moment when God’s people stumbled into an oasis where the people of Moab lived.  Boys who had been born on the march, who had grown to young manhood in the wilderness, and had never known the comforts of home and hearth were surrounded by a city with…sweet-smelling girls – wearing silken dresses, reclining on pillows, and inviting the strangers to share their hospitality.

What could be wrong with one night of pleasure after a lifetime of blistered feet and dirty bodies and parched throats? ‘Tomorrow we will get back to God’s journey.  Tonight we will lie in the arms of the Moabite women.’ And again God’s warning echoed in their ears: ‘Do not give in to sexual lust.’  The warning seemed so unreasonable.  It was the young men’s one chance to experience what they might never be able to experience again….They had no intention of making it a permanent relationship.  It was a sexual sin, but it could be forgiven in the morning.  So they stepped outside God’s circle of obedience.  And at sunrise, after their night of ecstasy, the young women of Moab invited them to a special breakfast…Sleepily the young men agreed.  Around the heavily laden buffet, God’s children watched the curious custom of the Moabite priests’ sacrificing to the stone god Baal.

Nights passed.  The sun rose and set.  One by one the young men joined in the breakfast sacrifice.  Moses walked from the camp of Israel into the cities of Moab and found the young men living with the Moabite women, worshipping the Moabite god.  His pleas to them went unheard.  The young men had forgotten who they were and why they had been created.…And the Lord said unto Moses, Take all the heads of [these young men] and hang them up before the Lord against the sun….And Moses said unto the judges of Israel, Slay ye every one of his men that were joined to Baal-peor. (Numbers 25:4,5)  Twenty-four thousand young men died before the journey could begin again.[xxxiii]

White points out a critical element conspicuously absent from gay and pro-gay theology:

It helps me to remember, when I struggle with sexual lust or any other temptation, that there is a war going on.  I am neither a vegetable, a machine, nor an accidental merging of sperm and egg.  I am someone special whom God made, knows and cares about.  I am His child and He has dreams for me…[xxxiv]

Many liken sexual urges to one’s regular appetite for nourishment.  Consumption at breakfast brings energy and gastronomic peace only to be followed by a repeat craving at lunch and supper.  Insatiable appetites consume where and as soon as the urge occurs.  Indeed, advertising on TV or in magazines for chocolates can tempt and stimulate the uncontrolled viewer into hunger pains and entice him into a subsequent search habit leading to either depression from unfulfilled yearnings or an eating frenzy.  Sexual temptation can operate like hunger.  “Free love” advocate Margaret Sanger argued that the energy and power of “civilized life” has its source in our sexual cravings and, therefore, civilized society needs a worldview, which allows us to consume the pleasure of orgasm to the maximum life permits.  Tacit in her claim is the premise that to stand against the urges of this biological life-force is dumb and destined to end in self-defeat.  This worldview, often toted under the term “sexual liberation” really assumes that we are life-long slaves to the vagaries of our own libido.   Here self-constraint is not encouraged as technology, in the form of contraception and abortion, is seen as the only successful means for harnessing sexual urges and controlling the biological consequences of our sexual activities.  In Sanger’s “free love” society, sexual urges require gratification where, when and with whomever they may occur.  Constraint is a sex negative notion and abstinence is a term never found in the lexicon for the liberated.

If it is not uncommon for our young adolescents to feel confused about their sexual identity; if they’re being encouraged during those same confusing years to experiment sexually; if they’re taught that virtually all forms of sexual expression are legitimate; if pleasure begets fantasy and fantasy begets lust; and if same-sex co-experimentees are the most prevalent; when we are told, “Don’t worry, we don’t recruit; if your kid is not gay, these programs can’t make him gay,” can we really be expected to believe it?


Copyright © 2008 StandForGod.Org

[i] Christopher Hewitt, “Homosexual Demography: Implications for the Spread of AIDS,” Journal of Research, November 1998, pg 4.  [Brecher, p. 217],, 16/02/08.

[ii] John J. McNeill, The Church and the Homosexual (Mission Kansas: Sheed Andrews and McMeel, 1976), p.95.

[iii] Phyllis Chesler,  Women & Madness (New York: Avon Books, 1972), pp.183 and 184.

[iv] Freetobeme, “If I think I might be gay or lesbian, shouldn’t I try it out to see if I am?”, 2/22/01.

[v] Martin S. Weinberg, Colin J. Williams, Douglas W. Pryor, Dual Attraction: Understanding Bisexuality (New York: Oxford Press, 1994), p.30.

[vi] Ibid., pp.30 and 31.

[vii] Ibid., p.48.

[viii] Ibid., p.58.

[ix] Ibid., p.158.

[x] Ibid., p.286.

[xi] Ibid., p.287.

[xii] Ibid., p.290.

[xiii] Ibid., p.291.

[xiv] Ibid., pp.16 and 17.

[xv] Majorie Garber, VICEVERSA (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1995), p.306.

[xvi] Ibid., p.306.

[xvii] Ibid., p.307.

[xviii] Ibid.

[xix] Ibid., p.308.

[xx] Ibid., p.352.

[xxi] Ibid., p.354.

[xxii] Ibid.

[xxiii] Ibid.

[xxiv] H. Montgomery Hyde, The Trial of Oscar Wilde (New York: Dover Publications, 1973), p.166

[xxv] Ibid., p.166.

[xxvi] H. Montgomery Hyde, The Trial of Oscar Wilde (New York: Dover Publications, 1973), p.163.

[xxvii] Ibid., p.166.

[xxviii] George Woodcock, Oscar Wilde: The Double Image (New York: Black Rose Books, 1989), p.231.

[xxix] Mel White, Lust: The Other Side of Love (Old Tappan, New Jersey: Fleming H. Revell, 1978), p.16.

[xxx] Ibid.

[xxxi] Ibid.

[xxxii] Ibid., p.17.

[xxxiii] Ibid., pp,47 and 48.

[xxxiv] Ibid., pp.86 and 87.