Commentary on <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags" />Brokeback Mountain, the homosexual "love affair" movie<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />
By Mark Landsbaum
One conservative commentator recently panned the critically acclaimed movie Brokeback Mountain, boldly making the unremarkable observation that its leading men aren't really heroic or even courageous. In fact, these two sheepherders (they aren't cowboys) are better described as ashamed, suicidal and selfish, with little regard to the lives of their loved ones that are devastated by their "romance."
But this observation is correct only as far as it goes. And it's dangerous precisely because that's as far as it goes. The error is in seeing the problem merely in its consequences (infidelity, broken families, suicidal depression), rather than in its cause: homosexual lust.
Half-hearted criticism such as this regards the consequences of a sinful act as if they can be tweaked for improvement, and as if the sin can be committed in a better way (by self-sacrifice, consideration of others, without shame) in order to alleviate its dire consequences.
This approach only compounds the error. It doesn't fix it.
The point is not that horrid consequences arise because the movie's protagonists don't commit their sin kindly and compassionately. The point is the sin itself.
Thinking that an abomination before God can be made acceptable if it's merely taken out of the closet and performed in a kindly manner is the epitome of foolishness. But so acceptable has the sin of homosexual lust become in our culture that even conservative commentators are diverted to discuss secondary issues the fallout, rather than the bomb. Allowing the homosexual lobby to dictate these terms of the debate, we concede their point that their sin should be condoned. All that's left to debate is how much, where and when.
But same-sex sexual relationships are wrong. That's the reason they should not be encouraged or accepted as normal, let alone celebrated. The problem isn't that homosexuality hasn't yet been ingratiated into the public conscience or shamelessly accepted by its practitioners.
The reason people are repulsed by homosexual sex isn't because people are bigoted. It's the same reason people are repulsed by pedophilia, theft, murder and lying. It's because God is repulsed by sin and we all, created in His image, inherently understand right from wrong. (See Romans 1)
It is no surprise that when sin is embraced, the consequences are shame, dishonesty and the other natural fruits of selfish desires. Man is fallen in sin. Accommodating sin doesn't fix his problem. Only repenting and giving one's life to Christ remedies the problem.
But no one gives his life to the Savior if he unrepentantly seeks to justify his sins. (See Isaiah 5:21) What is an abomination to the Lord, is an abomination. Period. (See 1 Corinthians 6:9)
And contrary to the apologists for homosexuality, there's no correlation between skin color or ethnicity and the sinful perversion of sexual relations among people of the same sex. Although excuse makers like to draw parallels with movies like Guess Who's Coming to Dinner and Gentleman's Agreement, those films dealt with bigotry. There is no bigotry involved in recognizing sin.
There is no moral argument for making good what God considers sinful. Those who try, commit additional sin.
"Woe to those who call evil good and good evil." (Isaiah 5:20)
The challenges that homosexuals face each day aren't about how to "come out" in an agreeable manner, but instead how to turn from their sinful impulses, just as the liar, the pedophile and the thief must. Normalizing the sinful urge for unnatural sex is no more correct than normalizing lying, pedophilia or theft.
Persuading themselves and others that their sinful lusts can be good things if only done nicely doesn't change the nature of their sinful lusts. It merely draws others into their sin. And it doesn't fool for Lord for one minute.
As Jesus said, "You are those who justify yourselves before men, but God knows your hearts. For what is highly esteemed among men is an abomination in the sight of God." (Luke 16:15)
This is the message that must be delivered to those who are tempted by homosexual desires if they are to conform to God's will and to avoid the dire consequences of their acts in this life, and the far more serious consequences in the next life.
Panning Brokeback Mountain because its protagonists' aren't nice guys misses the point entirely. There are no nice guys. There are only sinners. And there's only one solution for that.
Mark Landsbaum, a former reporter for the Los Angeles Times, is a Christian free-lance writer from Diamond Bar, California, whose columns and articles are published in Christian and secular publications.
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