Archbishop Desmond Tutu interviewed on BBC Radio

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Listen to it all as he gives his perspective on the Communion and some matters with which it is involved.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalAnglican ProvincesAnglican Church of Southern AfricaSexuality Debate (in Anglican Communion)Same-sex blessings

Posted November 28, 2007 at 1:34 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

1. robroy wrote:

This is a reformulation of my response to SF:

The interviewer, who was so very biased, harped on lack of number of verses explicitly dealing with homosexuality. I asked, “How many unequivocal condemnations of homosexuality and references to the normative nature of sexual relations only in marriage of a man and woman does one need?” and “How many injunctions against murder are there? Is this how we determine which parts of the Bible we can ignore?” I can see it now: there are 23 injunctions against adultery, but only 7 against homosexuality and only 3 against coveting one’s neighbor’s property. Therefore adultery is out but homosexuality and covetousness is OK???

The interviewer makes the very big assumption because there are not enough verses condemning homosexuality to satisfy him, therefore “Jesus doesn’t care about homosexuality.” Whew, boy! That’s a big jump. Jesus left no injunctions against foot fetishism, speeding in a construction zone, or sticking your old gum under the table. Are those OK?

How about this…the condemnation of homosexuality and other porneia were so unequivocal that not much else needs to be said. It was clearly a settled matter in first century Israel. And yet, we, enlightened post-Christian thinkers are so much wiser than those primitives, don’t ya’ know.

November 28, 3:37 pm | [comment link]
2. Br_er Rabbit wrote:

Hey! Sticking your old gum under the table (or desk) is a hallowed academic institution. I started doing it in Kindergarten! Since this is the cultural norm, it must be OK, right? ....right?

November 28, 5:21 pm | [comment link]
3. johnno777 wrote:

Archbishop Desmond Tutu: “If God, as they say, is homophobic, I wouldn’t worship that God”

A Christian Response. (This is a very truncated left over version of a long blog which exceeded the limit by !00% for this site.)

We now come to the latest furore caused by Tutu’s utterings. This article was inspired by the headline emblazoned in a local newspaper in Cape Town, South Africa which stated: “‘I wouldn’t worship an anti-gay God- Tutu’. The report was based on an interview with Tutu on a B.B.C. radio programme in which he actually said: “If God, as they say, is homophobic, I wouldn’t worship that God.” Well, he does not worship that God… for now, at any rate; but the Bible tells us that there will come a time, after this current dispensation on earth, that “at the name of Jesus every knee will bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the Father.” That includes Satan, Hitler, Stalin, Idi Amin, Saddam Hussein, Desmond Tutu et al. The worship will not be voluntary.

The homosexual debate within Christianity has raged on for ages now, with the liberal left escalating pressures on Christians to accept that homosexuality is acceptable in the sight of God and that it is only conservative killjoys who have not progressed with the rest of enlightened society to see that the view that homosexuality is a sin, is a draconian concept borne out of many of misconceptions and misinterpretations of Old Testament scriptures. There is no misinterpretation of God’s Holy Scriptures, the Bible, which tells us of God’s hatred and abhorrence for acts of homosexuality. There are many places in the Bible clearly stating this. And it is not only the Old Testament which expounds this truth. We are told in the book of Corinthians for instance: “Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes, nor homosexual offenders nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God”. That is explicit and clear. There is no mistranslation or misunderstanding about the status of homosexuals. Firstly they are categorised as “wicked”, then as “offenders” and finally, they will not enter the kingdom of heaven. You will notice that most of these people are representative of people who Tutu claims are “God-carriers” and are deeply loved by God.

Tutu said further in the B.B.C. interview: “It is a perversion if you say to me that a person chooses to be homosexual”. Well, a person chooses to be homosexual. There may be indeterminable debates regarding whether people are born with a predilection to liking members of their own sex, but such a person should rightly be known as a homophile. Unless a person is being raped or being forced to partake in sex against their will, all people choose to have sex, hence homosexuals choose to partake in same sex activities unless, as I say, they have been forced or coerced in some way to do so. It is not a sin to be a homophile but it is to be homosexual. Tutu says it is a perversion to say that it’s a person’s choice to commit a homosexual act, but the Bible says in the Old Testament: “If a man lies with a man as one lies with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable.” and in the New Testament: “Men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed indecent acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their perversion.” Homosexuality is the perversion according to the Bible, not someone saying that it is a choice. Again, Tutu is disingenuous when he intimates in all his discussions about the subject matter, that those who say that homosexuality is abhorrent to God and unacceptable to Him are also saying that God rejects homosexuals coming to Him for salvation and eternal life. That is not true. God accepts anyone, including homosexuals, but He does not condone the perpetuation of a homosexual lifestyle, or give even a tacit approval to such a lifestyle. It would make a mockery of the veracity of the Bible if it says on the one hand that God abhors homosexuality and sees it as a perversion of human sexuality, while on the other hand, he condones it and states that a part of Him is in all homosexuals. No, the Bible does not make that ridiculous dichotomy, Desmond Tutu does.

Both Jew and Moslems take pride in their claims that their holy scriptures have remained the same over aeons and are unchangeable. The Christian Bible is no different in that regard. It is not malleable and does not change according to the latest philosophy or politically correct fad. Homosexuality was a sin in the Old Testament era and it remains a sin in the New Testament era. One can feel for people who are caught up in that lifestyle and who struggle with it, but the worst disservice anyone could do toward such people is to validate the lifestyle and to tell them that what they are doing is natural and fine and that anyone who speaks against it is a bigot. The Bible states that it is unnatural. Ministers of the Gospel have an awesome responsibility toward God’s flock, who often look to them for guidance. They will come under great scrutiny from God and as God said to the rabbis of old in the book of Isaiah, He will say the same to modern day ministers who invent theologies and philosophies in place of God’s revealed word to humankind. “Israel’s watchmen are blind, they all lack knowledge; they are all mute dogs, they cannot bark; they lie around and dream, they love to sleep. They are dogs with mighty appetites; they never have enough. They are shepherds who lack understanding; they all turn to their own way, each seeks his own gain. ‘Come, each one cries, ‘let me get wine! Let us drink our fill of beer! And tomorrow will be like today, or even far better.”

It would appear that Tutu’s belief that homosexuality is not a choice, indeed possibly even a gift from God, was formed when that great icon of the Anglican Church, Trevor Huddleston visited him in hospital as a child when he was suffering from tuberculosis. A close friendship formed between the two which remained till Huddleston’s dying day. Huddleston was a pederast (one who has sexual relations with boys), or what we more commonly know today as a paedophile. He was one of a multitude of Anglican homosexual clerics past and present, in South Africa, England and the rest of the world. Tutu’s church in South Africa (Church of the Province, either covers up incidents of its priests molesting boys, or it moves them to other dioceses, or it promotes them to bishop as is the case with at least one of its current bishops). When Huddleston was finally caught molesting boys in England after returning to his homeland from a sojourn in South Africa, the Anglican church there, not only covered it up (after paying the boys’ parents compensation), he was promoted to Archbishop of the see (sea) of the Indian Ocean. He was regularly seen with boys on his lap, or touching them even while holding conversations with adults.

Tutu avers that “the church is obsessed with the question of human sexuality”. The truth of the matter is that liberals within the Anglican church, the Roman Catholic Church, as well as other churches, have relentlessly kept the pressure up over the past decades in ever increasing measures to make homosexuality palatable and acceptable,  not only to society in general, but to the Christian Church. The obsession is not with Christians or churches faithful to the Bible, but with those who are hell bent on forcing it into the Christian canon. The chasm is growing deeper and wider. The sheep and the goats are being separated, as are the weeds and the wheat. Maranatha!!!

Maybe the majority of the readers of this article will howl in disgust and disapprove of its assertions and certainly point out that they are not politically correct etc., and they certainly have the right to hold any opinion or worldview they wish to hold, but what it attempts to do is to show any objective reader (as opposed to readers with, what the Bible describes as having ‘itchy ears, i.e. hearing what they want to hear), that when it comes to representing Christianity and its Bible, Archbishop emeritus, Desmond Tutu, does not in anyway legitimately represent, or accurately portray and interpret either Christianity or the Bible. He, as anyone else has the right to opinions and philosophies; he has, however, no right to purportedly speak for God, His Christ, or His Church through his utterings over the past few decades till now.
God have mercy on his soul.

December 1, 6:09 pm | [comment link]
4. johnno777 wrote:

I have found a way to show my blog in its entirity. I’ts not pretty though. This is the first part, the second part comes next, and the last is the first blog of the three on this website. The site has a limit of 10,000 characters for a blog and unfortunately I did not work out at first that I could split it into three.
Archbishop Desmond Tutu: “If God, as they say, is homophobic, I wouldn’t worship that God”

A Christian Response.

It is very unfortunate that Desmond Tutu, archbishop emeritus of the church of the Province of South Africa is afforded any currency, by anyone, when he makes utterances about how the Christian Church, or how Christians should behave. There are several reasons for this; the first being that he lacks a moral compass which is governed by the handbook for all Christians, the Bible, which also happens to be the primary written source for theology of Christianity. Instead, any moral compass which he may claim to have is calibrated and governed by the ever shifting opinions and standards of what is now largely known as a post-modern, non-Christian world. The term politically correct habituates comfortably there. Post-modernism denies that there can be any universal truth (one truth relevant and applicable to all people anywhere in the world) or any abiding truth (a truth that holds true for all time). Relativism and pluralism is the offspring of such a philosophy and an utterer of a muthos which refuses any subjection to the Logos (Christ). Plato said in Charmides: “We should not at all be concerned with who said it, but whether it is true or not.” For a Christian, the only reference for truth, or as Francis Schaeffer calls it, “true truth”, is the Bible itself and that book exhorts any listener to so-called truths to verify such claims of truth against its own documented true truths. The Bible is the sole standard against which any claimed truth may be measured against and verified and ratified, or not.

To understand how and why Tutu believes and says what he does, one needs to look back into the history of the Church of England to see where the very first fissure formed within its ranks, which over time has developed into a chasm dividing its members into two distinct camps, a chasm that will probably never be able to be bridged again. After fomenting as a conspiracy in 1833, in Oxford, it is ironic that the palpable cracks started in South Africa (Tutu’s birthplace), in March 1847, with the appointment of Robert Gray as the first bishop of the Church of England in South Africa. Gray was a member of a conspiratorial group of mainly Oxford academics known variously as “The Oxford Movement”, “Tractarians” and “Anglo-Catholics” working secretly and subversively against the constitutional articles of the Church of England. They believed that the historic schism of the mid sixteenth century reformation and the formation of a protestant “Church of England” by Henry viii was a big mistake. The true church was, and always would be the Roman Catholic Church. It was with this philosophy that Gray arrived in Cape Town and caused pandemonium amongst the local church’s adherents and clergy. Within seven days he renamed St George’s Church, St George’s Cathedral. After a while, when a number of clergymen remonstrated with him, accusing him of trying to impose a form of religious practice foreign to the thirty nine articles of faith of the Church of England, he withdrew their stipends and refused one of them permission to preach in his own church. He also put padlocks on the doors of another church. They eventually took him to the Supreme Court of the land and won their cases against him. Ever since then, that branch of the Anglican Church (from which many rotten apples have fallen) can only be known in South Africa as the Church of the Province of South Africa, whereas the original adherents have been known as the Church of England in South Africa. When it suited Gray, he appealed to the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Privy Council for help (to get bishop Colenso excommunicated among other things), when it did not suit him (when his superiors in England, including the Archbishop of Canterbury, concurred with the clergy in South Africa and attempted to discipline him), he ignored them and claimed that although his church was in union and communion with the mother church in England, it was not under its disciplinary control. Gray once said in a letter: “I am afraid that my dear brethren Wilberforce (bishop of Oxford) and Hamilton (bishop of Salisbury) regard me as obstinate, self willed, determined at all hazards to force the mother church to recognition of my proceedings or else to incur the risk of schism. The two archbishops (York and Canterbury) opposed all that we did with bitterness and vehement hostility. We cannot and dare not trust these to select a bishop for this land. We shall probably have, in our provincial synod, to protest against this act of the Archbishop of Canterbury for interfering canonically in the affairs of this province, with which he had no connections, ecclesiastically or legally.” Gray was of course wrong on both counts but he was determined to force his extrabiblical ideology onto the clergy and laity under his control in South Africa.
Sadly, the main body of the Church of England, in England, eventually acquiesced to the Oxford movement’s philosophy over the years and only a small minority of churches known as the “low church” remain faithful to the thirty nine articles of faith of the established Church of England. Gray did not want the job of bishop in the first place and told a friend in a letter, before his appointment, that he was not a spiritual person and that the church had many better qualified people than himself to do the job. It has taken the Anglican Church in its mother country 160 years to come to a similar chasm within its ranks that had formed in South Africa in the mid nineteenth century.

The reason why this brief background is given, is that even though much of the theology perpetuated by like minded adherents, past and present, was home-spun and morphed into the predominant philosophies of the day, the thread which weaved its way through the warp and woof of so-called Anglo-Catholicism, was the weighting given by the Roman Catholic Church and this group (the Anglo Catholics), to extra-biblical factors i.e. church tradition, anthropomorphic philosophies, decisions taken by church councils, the opinions of prelates, archbishops or presiding bishops etc. At very best, these aspects of societal and church life have been given equal weighting to biblical precepts and directives. At worst they have taken primacy over the word of God. The so-called “high” Anglican Church (which the Anglo Catholic church is known as today) has a history of at least 140 years where it has not in the main, based its theological decisions exclusively on the tenets of the Bible. Its leaders mostly have concurred with today’s Post-moderns and other non, or anti Christians, that the Bible does not contain definitive, universal and abiding truths which do not date and become passé and which are applicable in any and all contexts that affect humankind. There is little or no reverence and awe for the Bible and its precepts, or for God and His Christ for that matter. The true Christian uses the Bible as his or her moral compass, for faith, direction, contemplation and praxis.

December 2, 2:54 pm | [comment link]
5. johnno777 wrote:

Part TWO

The second major reason why Tutu should not be given any currency when he utters statements which elucidate various aspects of his worldview, is that he is not a Christian.
He makes Christian noises, wears clerical garb and large crosses that dangle around his neck and quotes from the Bible, but he is not a Christian. In this case, even though it looks like a duck, walks like a duck, makes a noise like a duck… it is not a duck and what it says is not all that it’s quacked up to be. He is, in reality, a holist, pantheist, humanist, Marxist and Universalist. He admits to most of these appellations himself. It is for this reason that he proclaims: “Because love is universal. I mean, you don’t have to believe in God to know that loving is better than hating. We are trying to remind them that all of us are fundamentally good. The aberration is the bad person. God is not upset that Gandhi was not a Christian, because God is not a Christian! All of God’s children and their different faiths help us to realize the immensity of God. No faith contains the whole truth about God. And certainly Christians don’t have a corner on God. All of us belong to God. Even the nonbeliever is precious to God. And one simply tries to remind them that they are made for transcendence. They are made for goodness.” and “All of us are God’s children. I frequently say, I’m so glad I’m not God! Can you imagine having to say, “Bin Laden is my child. Saddam Hussein is my child. George Bush is my child.” Oh! All of them, including me. Can you imagine what God must have felt watching the Holocaust? Watching Hiroshima and Nagasaki? Watching Rwanda? Can you imagine God watching Darfur? Imagine God watching Iraq and saying, “These are my children here, and they are killing my other children. And I can’t do anything because I have said to them, ‘I give you the space to be you and that space enables you to make choices. And I can’t stop you when you make the wrong choices. All I can do is sit here and cry.’” And God cries until God sees beautiful people who care, even if they may not do earth-shattering things.”  That belief is not borne of the Christian Bible; it comes from a mish mash of eastern belief systems with Tutu’s own homespun ideas from the god he created in his own image. According to the Bible, we are not all fundamentally good, in fact it states quite the opposite: “For all have sinned and come short of the Glory of God” and what are the consequences arising from that situation? “For the wages of sin is (eternal) death but the gift of God is eternal life in Jesus Christ our Lord.” That gift is also not given to all humanity but only to those who repent of their sinfulness and accept the gift of life through Christ. The Bible is also very clear about the fact that all of God’s human creations are not automatically His children, or members of His family and He does not automatically show favour toward the great majority of them. It is only after a process of each individual recognizing and acknowledging their state of sinfulness and inability to please God, and repentance of sin, as well as a personal invitation for Jesus to come and spiritually inhabit them and empower them to transform and turn away from their sinful lives, that they can become members of God’s family. It seems like a long winded cumbersome rite but its not. It can happen in seconds. An individual can go through that whole process by just saying: “O God help me”, meaning that he or she wants God to transform them from being a lost soul to one who is saved from eternal damnation. The Bible says: “Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in him, he gave the right to become children of God.” John 1: 12. Yet Tutu says: “In God’s family, there are no outsiders, no enemies. Black and white, rich and poor, gay and straight, Jew and Arab, Muslim and Christian, Hindu and Buddhist, Hutu and Tutsi, Pakistani and Indian—all belong.” Tutu’s philosophy says that all are God’s children, but the Christian Bible says that only by a true belief in Christ and an invitation for Him to come and inhabit and rule over an individual, can anyone become a child of God and then, one only maintains that status if one “remains in Christ and He in you” or else “If anyone does not remain in me, he is like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up and thrown into the fire and burned.”

Tutu has said on occasion that he is not holy. Far be it as a result of self effacing modesty, or because of his lying, or his habit of knocking back a daily glass or two of rum and coke; there is a very good reason why Tutu makes a statement like that. Holiness, or being holy, means being set apart. Obviously because of his experiences in South Africa of Apartheid, he is averse to any belief system that requires people to be separated, but this is not the only reason for his aversion. His worldview of Holism or Universalism and Humanism believes that God is in everything and that everything is in God and ultimately, everyone is God. Concomitantly, no one is separated, or excluded from God. It is a very attractive and comforting philosophy, but it is not biblical and consequently not Christian. God states in the Bible: “Be Holy as I am Holy”. It is not a suggestion or a request, but a directive. How do we become holy then? The Bible tells us that His Holy Spirit sanctifies us and makes us holy and that we access God the Father by one Spirit. Uttering one of his many theological inventions, Tutu once said from St Albans cathedral Pretoria: “The Holy Spirit is not limited to the Christian church; for example, Mahatma Ghandi, who is a Hindu, the Holy Spirit shines through him.” Not only is such a statement blasphemous, but there is absolutely nothing in the Bible that can lead someone to make such an assumption. The Bible states: “This is how you can recognise the Spirit of God: Every Spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, but every spirit that does not acknowledge Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you have heard is coming and even now is in the world.” Hinduism believes in and worships multiple deities. The Bible states that there is only one God and that he is only accessible through Jesus Christ. Ghandi never believed nor propagated that, nor does the Dalai Lama, nor does Desmond Tutu.

December 2, 2:57 pm | [comment link]
6. johnno777 wrote:

Part Three
Tutu also said: “Can you imagine that there are those who think God is a Christian? Can you tell us what God was before he was a Christian?” as well as “Most of us think God is a Christian, but if you think that God is going to tell the Dalai Lama ‘you’re a good person, but sorry you’re not a Christian’ then (I say) rubbish.” Tutu is usually very astute with his turn of phrase when he says something controversial and mostly tries to play linguistic chess so that he can argue his way out of a situation when challenged by Bible believing Christians. Of course God is not a Christian, but what Tutu clearly infers here and on numerous other occasions, is that God is not only defined as He is defined by Christians, but equally validly defined and understood by many, all, other faiths. Tutu has his own “Peace Prayer” in which he states inter alia: “Oh God, all Holy one, you are our Mother and our Father and we are your children. Open our eyes and our hearts that we may be able to discern your work in the universe, and be able to see your features in every one of your children. May we learn that there are many paths, but all lead to You. Help us to know that you have created us Members of the same family Your family, the human family.” But the Christian Bible states: “But there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Jesus Christ.” One God, one path, one mediator, Jesus Christ. As Jesus said in His own words: “No man comes to the Father except through me.” None of the aforementioned people believe that; including Tutu.

Thirdly, no true Christian can utter the blasphemies that God is: “a God of disgracefully loose standards”, “His (God’s) standards are quite low”. “Jesus revolutionised religion by showing that God is a “disreputable” God – a God who accepts unconditionally and rejoices when everyone is included in a fair and just society.” Imagine what would happen to Tutu if he pretended to be a Moslem and spoke of “Allah” in those terms. God’s standards are of the highest and most demanding. He says in the Bible: “Be perfect as I am perfect” an impossible state for us to attain without the only perfect man ever to walk this earth, Jesus, inhabiting us and empowering us so that we become juridically perfect in God’s sight. His acceptance of those wishing to come to Him is not unconditional, His acceptance is to those who repent and turn from their sinful living. Obviously Tutu in his irreverent characterisation of God is trying to make the point that God accepts all-comers irrespective of their status in society, or their spiritual, or physical condition. He does indeed accept all of the aforementioned and more, but Tutu makes a disingenuous or ignorant extrapolation from that truth to the assertion that God is the friend of all societal misfits, even if they continue living their same lives, after coming to a spiritual meeting with Him. When Jesus rescued a prostitute from being stoned by a mob and told her that He would not condemn her, He said to her: “Go now and leave your life of sin.  The Bible is full of allegories and metaphors using prostitution as an illustration to the vileness of individuals, the nation of Israel and the like. With Tutu the single tax collector, prostitute, thief and adulteress with whom Jesus encountered and transformed, they have become plural so Jesus is the friend of tax collectors, prostitutes etc.  It is important to note that none of the abovementioned returned to their previous way of living. Tutu says further: “Everyone, everyone, without exception, everyone, even the most unlikely, even the most undeserving—the down-and-outs, the derelicts, the louts, the drug addicts, the substance abusers, the prostitutes, the pimps—if we had but the eyes to see, we would discern even in dark conditions, that they were God-carriers, precious in the sight of God, with a value that cannot be computed.” Only in Pantheism and Holism, not biblical Christianity.

December 2, 2:57 pm | [comment link]
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