I call upon You, Lord, God of Abraham and God of Isaac and God of Jacob and Israel, You who are the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the God who, through the abundance of your mercy, was well-pleased towards us so that we may know You, who made heaven and earth, who rules over all, You who are the one and the true God, above whom there is no other God; You who, by our Lord Jesus Christ gave us the gift of the Holy Spirit, give to every one who reads this writing to know You, that You alone are God, to be strengthened in You, and to avoid every heretical and godless and impious teaching.

St Irenaeus of Lyons, Against the Heresies 3:6:4

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

The Yuck Factor, Carl Truman

The yuck factor is a significant and deadly element of Christian thinking. Take, for example, the various denominations currently tearing apart over the issue of homosexuality and gay marriage.  Many, if not all, such denominations have routinely allowed men, and often women, who deny the resurrection, to occupy pulpits for many years with impunity.  Denial of the resurrection is, according to Paul, lethal to any kind of gospel witness and utterly destructive of Christian hope, to the point that it not only denies the saving action of God but actually makes Christians the most pitiable of all people.

So why the bust up over homosexuality when the most important things have already been made matters over which we can institutionally agree to differ?   I suspect the answer is the yuck factor.  Homosexuality is, or perhaps better was, revolting to a certain generation. It disgusted them in a way that polite, educated men denying the faith did not. That generation is now rapidly passing away and a new one is rising, with a mindset shaped not only by knowing kind, civil, gay friends but also by  a myriad pop culture images and an increasingly aggressive politicization of the issue.  The yuck factor does not apply any more. More here.