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Monday, May 05, 2008

For the Bible Tells Me So

There's a new so-called documentary DVD out this year called "For the Bible Tells Me So." It was shown by a local homosexual advocacy group in Rapid City last month, and it was fairly well attended. It was also shown in Sioux Falls last month, and the DVD continues to be played for small groups across the country.

The film claims to examine what the Bible really says about homosexuality.

There are moral and practical reasons to discourage homosexual behavior.

From a practical perspective, the increased health risks associated with homosexuality are staggering: higher rates of AIDS, other STDs, anxiety, depression, substance abuse and suicide. Of course, homosexuals have become very practiced in casting aspersion on the numerous studies which show this, but to the objective mind the evidence speaks for itself, including a report from the Centers for Disease Control which shows 72% of male AIDS cases spring from homosexual activity.

From a moral perspective, Christianity, Judaism and Islam, which makes up the vast majority of religious belief in the United States, all condemn homosexual behavior.

Though American culture is becoming increasingly secular, on the whole we remain a people with a worldview founded on Christianity. A recent Gallup poll found that 82 percent of Americans say they identify with Christianity. And the religious views held by people can affect their public policy views as powerfully as health statistics.

Therefore, if homosexuals and other apologists are serious about achieving widespread acceptance of homosexual behavior in our society, they must successfully deal with the religious question and undermine the traditional understanding.

Homosexuals believe they now have the right tool to accomplish this with "For the Bible Tells Me So." And given the fact that only about four percent of the U.S. population has a good grasp on what the Bible teaches, they may succeed.

"For the Bible Tells Me So" (FTBTMS) has been been viewed in dozens of showings in churches, community centers and activist organizations in the past few months. I've been monitoring news and blog coverage, with at least a couple of mentions of the DVD showing up every day. So far, I've seen only one article that spoke of the DVD in a negative light, and that one was fairly superficial.

Yet while the film severely distorts what the Bible says, very little of it deals with what the Bible actually says. The majority of the 98 minutes is spent cultivating sympathy toward homosexuals and antipathy toward people who actually believe what the Bible says about homosexuality.

At first glance, and to the mind not familiar with Scripture, it makes a compelling case. That is, until you take a closer look.

So I sat down and watched this DVD several times, transcribing several lengthy quotes to show context, and examining the film's contentions against what the Bible says. I also analyzed some of the films emotional ploys.

Tomorrow I will begin an 8-part series I'm calling "For the Bible Tells Me So: The Real Story." My hope is that the series will be helpful to to the person who wants to know the truth, but may be misled by slick packaging. Not only is it a scary thing to misrepresent what God has said, the safety and welfare of many people struggling with homosexuality is at stake.

If the Bible affirms homosexual behavior or is even neutral toward homosexual behavior, then despite the health risks, the Bible shouldn't be used as justification to oppose homosexuality.

But what if the traditional contention is actually what the Bible says? Then those who call themselves Christians have a decision to make: to follow the "way that seems right to a man," or to follow God's way.

Part 1 - Building Sympathy Without Exegesis
Part 2 - The Bible as a 'Truth Buffet'
Part 3 - Understanding the Bible...Or Rewriting It?
Part 4 - Science or the Bible...or Neither?
Part 5 - Why Was Sodom Destroyed?
Part 6 - What Does the New Testament Say about Homosexuality?
Part 7 - Do Activism, Sympathy and Self Supersede Biblical Authority?
Part 8 - What the DVD Does--And Doesn't--Answer


Anonymous said...

It seems to me that your take against the film is the exact reason why the film was made in the first place. The Truth is...christians are far from growing and tending to real relationships that involve christ following and we (christians) don't have any depth to what we believe. I think the film does a great job of what the director was actually trying to prove, which was only this...there is hatred out there in the name of christianity (Christ), and hatred for other people, is never part of what God attends for His people. We are called to love. Homophobics that are also christians may not be loving as they should be...which I believe this film allows for these christians to exam their hearts (along with scripture, scholarly advice, and knowledgable kingdom seekers).

Bob Ellis said...

You're exactly right, Anonymous. The film was made to try and nullify my "take."

To clarify, the film was made to attempt to distract people from what the Bible really says about homosexuality by using about 84 minutes of emotionalism and 15 minutes of brutally mangled interpretations of otherwise clear Scripture.

Obviously I didn't buy it, nor did several other friends of mine who watched it. They are all well grounded in what the Bible says.

But as Barna surveys have found, only about 4% of the general public has a Biblical worldview, and only about 9% of evangelical Christians do, which means they don't know the Bible any better than they know the owner's manual to their car. Which means a lot of people will likely be misled by this propaganda.

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