Among the misrepresentations contained in the Perspective article (June 3) by Rhonda Swan, "Lost in Translation: Remove the Bible from debate about same-sex marriage," were two of special note.
First was the idea that government, which admittedly regulates the administration of marriage, may not regulate in a way that's informed by Scriptural teaching. To err here, according to Swan, is to bind government to an unreliable standard (because, in her view, the Bible has been made to support dubious causes).
But this is preposterous. It supposes that human relations (such as marriage) can be declared acceptable and virtuous without reference to anything higher than the dictate of government. Was the federal government acting on nothing higher than itself when, objecting to the practice of polygamy, it opposed Utah's being granted statehood until 1896? No, this opposition was rooted in the conviction that laws governing human relationships must stand in some definite relationship to transcendent principles given to humanity by heaven.
Second was the premise that no single reigning conception of human sexuality is provided in the Bible. Genesis 3 (affirmed by Jesus in Matthew 19:4) relates that the original couple was man-woman joined in permanent union.
"Lost in Translation" at very least needed a matching counter-argument.
DR. KENNETH J. STEWART, Lookout Mountain, Ga.
In response to the article by Rhonda Swan in the June 3 Perspective section, Christians strongly disagree with the statement that the Bible should be removed from the same-sex marriage debate. The Bible existed prior to the U.S. Constitution, and the framers of the Constitution were influenced and directed by their knowledge of the Bible.
The Bible speaks of homosexual relations many times in Scripture as a perverse and detestable sin.
Leviticus 18:22 states, "Do not lie with a man as one lies with a woman, that is detestable."
The Bible is very clear that homosexuality is not a reasonable or acceptable lifestyle. We should not remove the Bible from same-sex marriage.
I write this letter on behalf of the entire student body at Signal Mountain Middle High School. I don't know whether to feel flattered or concerned over the endless publicity, both past and present, that has been given to our young school by the Chattanooga Times Free Press. I'm amazed that with everything happening in the local, state and national news, Signal Mountain Middle High School continues to be your headline.
I personally invite you into our school, and allow me to show you everything that's positive. Our test scores are in the top 5 percent in the state. Our five state championships earned in four years. Our numerous awards received by The Signal Corps Marching Band. I would happily introduce you to art students who would be proud to show you their work. I would invite you to our next theater production by our outstanding drama department.
The students care for each other. We work hard at what we do academically, athletically, and through extracurricular activities. We have pride in our school and each other and continue to hold ourselves to a higher standard. We are a student body of over 1,200, each of us making positive headlines every day.
THOMAS GAUTHIER, SMHS Student Council president
In the diatribe (Perspective, June 3) regarding the removal of the Bible from the debate about same-sex marriage, I find it very confusing that an editorial writer (Rhonda Swan) based such a piece on inaccurate information and pro same-sex marriage professors who don't have the facts.
In response to the reference to Jennifer Knust's book about the Bible's contradictions about "Sex and Desire," I would reference the response to the article from Robert A.J. Ganon's Ph.D. and associate professor of New Testament at Pittsburgh Theological Seminary (my-take-the-Bible-really-does-condemn-homosexuality).
Knust's statement regarding "no such thing as a single, biblically based view of legitimate marriage" is inaccurate. Marriage was given by God; it's his institution, not men's. (Genesis 2:18-24).
(Hebrews 13:4) " Marriage should be honored by all, and the marriage bed kept pure, for God will judge the adulterer and all the sexually immoral."
I hope that Rhonda Swan can get the facts accurate regarding homosexuality and the Bible. God condemns homosexuality and all sin. But Jesus has provided a way of salvation. (Romans 5:8). The Bible is "the Truth" and defines an accurate account of marriage.
The only thing good about Rhonda Swan's Perspective piece (June 3), "Remove the Bible from debate about same-sex marriage," is that it reveals what's really at stake in that debate: the authority of Scripture. Not wanting to accept that God condemns homosexuality as sin, Ms. Swan adopts a twofold strategy:
First, she denies the Bible is God's word, claiming, (a) the Bible is "filled with contradictions," and (b) the translations are inaccurate. She failed to provide examples of (a), because, as anyone who has challenged such assertions knows, the alleged contradictions fall apart when examined closely. Readers of the original languages know that (b) is wrong, but even non-experts can see that the translations agree with one another on all important points.
Second, she denies that Scripture says homosexuality is evil, claiming that God destroyed Sodom for another sin rather than its depravity (Genesis 19:5). But she ignores many other Scriptures on that topic, such as Leviticus 18:22, "You (masculine) shall not lie with a male as one lies with a female; it is an abomination."
Homosexuality is curable: "Such were some of you (but Christ washed you)" (1 Corinthians 6:11).
D. RUSSELL HUMPHREYS
Hey folks ... remember Obama's 2008 campaign promise? ... "A change you can believe in." Unemployment is higher and rising again, food prices are higher, we're trillions of dollars more in debt. Now he wants more, with plans to cut the military budget in this age of terrorism. Can America survive four more years of this "change"?
ObamaCare health care has never worked in any other country; it won't work here.
I am fearful of the path Obama is leading us down. See 2 Timothy 4:34 (KJV). Now he has flipped-flopped on gay marriage, pandering for votes. Read Leviticus 20:13. America was founded upon Judeo-Christian beliefs. We must not turn away from that.
Obama has a plan: Bankrupt America of our financial, moral and spiritual beliefs, declare himself king of NWO of United States of Socialist Republic ... no more elections. Vote Obama and his administration out of office. "Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap" (Galatians 6:7).
Mr. Obama, please read Romans 1:27 and also Revelation 22:18-19. Be the Christian you claim to be.