Jesus and St. Paul were asexual and not everyone in heaven is non-binary

Jesus and St. Paul were asexual and not everyone in heaven is non-binary
Jesus and St. Paul were asexual and not everyone in heaven is non-binary

Most of the opposition to LGBTQ+ rights in the United States – historically and contemporary – emanates from Christian pulpits. From sea to sea, many pastors and priests still preach harsh words against those who are neither heterosexual nor cisgender. These preachers use the Christian Bible as a hammer and, without the slightest reservation or shadow of doubt, declare that “the God of the Bible” has issued an eternal edict against sexual and gender diversity. Homosexuality, bisexuality, asexuality and gender non-conformity are condemned. The same goes for non-binary and transgender human beings.

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These pastors are right that certain Bible passages are not friendly to homosexuals (“if a man lies with a man…”), nor pleasant to asexuals (“be fruitful and multiply”), and not kind to non-sexuals. -gender conformists (“be fruitful and multiply”). if a man wears what belongs to a woman…”). Of course, scripture can be terribly hard on many people: women in general (“women are not allowed to speak in church”); boys who make fun of prophets (just ask the 42 boys who made fun of the receding hairline atop the prophet Elisha’s head); non-virgin wives (“she will be stoned to death at the door of her father’s house”); those who commit adultery (“they will be put to death”); slaves (“slaves, obey your masters”); and the indigenous inhabitants of the Promised Land when Moses and Joshua brought their people from Egypt to Canaan (“they killed everyone, young and old, women and children”).

Conversely, the Bible also counsels kindness and encourages readers to practice peace and harmony while loving one another, even in defiance of exclusionary practices rooted in social status, class , ethnicity or gender and sexual identity. Saint Paul, for example, wrote that “in Christ we are neither male nor female.” The central figure of the New Testament, Jesus, always welcomed the outcast into his circle of friendship – and such marginalized individuals are numerous among the nearly 2,000 characters named in the Bible.

Jesus himself, for example, was an asexual person. Even though he allowed a woman to wash his feet, had many female friends, and was cared for by women until death, there is no reference in the four gospels to any relationship during his thirty-three years. He has never courted, been infatuated with, kissed or married a woman. If the portrait of Jesus that emerges from the gospels is that of a revolutionary dedicated to radical diversity – see the Parable of the Good Samaritan – to radical equity (“whoever wants it, come to me”) and to radical inclusion (“prostitutes shall enter the kingdom of heaven”), many white American conservative Christians reject these inclusive trends and openly oppose what they pejoratively call “wokeness”. Despite this, the Jesus of the Gospels, by the standards of his day, was quite “woke.” Liberal, even. He was also an Ace (asexual).

Saint Paul also appears as an asexual being in the Acts of the Apostles and in his epistolary writings to the communities of Christ in the Greco-Roman world. He encouraged Christians to “remain single, like me.” He admitted that some people cannot help but imbibe the power of their sexual energy and so they should marry. Yet a celibate, asexual life was Saint Paul’s life, and he preached such an ideal to others.

Many St. Paul’s aficionados today – those who cite “women are not allowed to speak” to reinforce their argument against women pastors and repeat “homosexuals shall not enter the kingdom of heaven” to justify their anti-LGBTQ+ sermons and legislation – hate to admit that their Saint Paul was asexual and that his asexuality is not the only example of sexual diversity in the Bible or in this life.

Sexual diversity also exists in the afterlife, according to Jesus. In the world to come, he said, “there is neither male nor female.” Everyone will be “like the angels in heaven.” Angels, Jesus taught, are asexual, non-binary beings who do not have romantic or sexual partnerships: they “neither marry nor are given in marriage.” Heaven, according to Jesus, is a non-binary paradise. No more men and women. No more heterosexuality, homosexuality and bisexuality. Jesus’ vision for this life is one of welcoming arms that invite all people to the table, and his vision for the afterlife is something more rainbow-friendly than his conservative disciples.

If Jesus, the man around whom the Christian religion was built, was asexual, and if Saint Paul, the founder of the Christian religion and the original exponent of the fundamental doctrines of the Christian faith, was also asexual (latent homosexual, some say). , but it is impossible to know), the Church today must learn a lesson and offer the world an inclusive Christianity under a big tent. If, in Christ, as Paul wrote, masculinity and femininity ultimately merge. If, as Jesus taught, angels are asexual and non-binary, it is time for those who believe in angels, heaven and Jesus to reinvent their approach to those who do not think, do not act, do not live not or don’t dress like them. Seen in this light, the Christian story can be an encouragement to all of us to love our neighbor regardless of sexuality, gender dictates, or the toilets in which people defecate.

Refocused, Christian history can be much more than the narrow, rigid and condemnatory version that resonates from too many pulpits and too many ballot boxes.

There is still plenty of room for Jesus in modern life – the Jesus who believed in diversity, equity and inclusion; the Jesus who was very good with “sinners”; the Jesus who condemned the hoarding of wealth, not the poor; the Jesus who was asexual and taught that heaven is non-binary. Let’s assume that only conservative Christians in the United States start preaching this Jesus instead of the one who brings division and retribution. In this case, they use weapons to defend their own stifling and restrictive social and political programs. If only.

Lord, hear our prayer.

Rodney Wilson holds graduate degrees in history and religion, teaches at a community college in Missouri, and founded LGBTQ+ History Month in the United States in 1994. He is the subject of the 2019 short film. Taboo teaching.

Views expressed in The lawyerOpinion articles are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views of The lawyer or our parent company, equals pride.

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