About Jesus  -  Steve Sweetman

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From Preference To Orientation


In these days of rapidly expanding forms of sexual expression, have you noticed the evolution in terminology?  "Sexual preference" has morphed into "sexual orientation".  Sexual preference implies you have a choice in determining your sexual identity.  Sexual orientation implies you have no choice.   It's just a matter of being genetically predetermined for you at birth.               


I suggest this change in terminology is a strategic and intentional public relations ploy by those espousing a departure from a traditionally accepted cultural morality.  It's easy to figure out.  If I address your preferred choice of sexual expression, I'm just addressing your choice.  If, however, I address your sexual orientation determined at birth, I'm addressing who you are.  There's a huge difference between preference and orientation.  People can tolerate criticism of their choices, but criticism of who they are is hard to handle.  This is why the debate over sexual identity has evolved into a human rights issue, which again, I believe, was the intended purpose for the change in terminology.  The sexual revolution of the 1960's has turned into a human rights movement today, no different from the civil rights movement in the past.            


For those who use the word "orientation" to support their cause, allow me to use it to support my cause.  What works for one should work for another.  In 2 Corinthians 5:17 the Apostle Paul said that anyone who is in Christ is a new creation, or, a new creature.  The Greek word "kainos" is translated as "new" in this verse.  "Kainos" means new in form, that is to say, new in who one is or new in what something is.  I therefore suggest that if I am in Christ, I have become a new human form, a new human creation.  This is due to the Holy Spirit coming into my life via a second birth.  As I differ from a woman from birth, so I being in Christ differ from one who is not in Christ because I've been born again.  In modern terminology, when I receive the Holy Spirit, my human orientation changes.  I no longer view myself as the person I once was prior to being born a second time.  Paul goes on to say in 2 Corinthians 5:17 that for those in Christ "all things are new".  If you have been reborn by the Spirit of God, you'll know that to be true.                 


I understand this sounds completely nonsensical to the uneducated and even to many Christians.  Think this through with me.  If I have been born again and the Holy Spirit now lives within me, I've got to be a new creation.  There's no way around it.  We're talking about God Almighty here.  We're talking about the Creator of all things living within me.  Paul wasn't speaking symbolically, allegorically, or metaphorically.  Neither was Jesus when He told Nicodemus that he had to be born again (John 3:3).  The spiritual element the Holy Spirit brings to the core of who I am does not exist in those outside of Christ.  If you haven't experienced this spiritual metamorphosis in your life, I can only conclude the Holy Spirit does not live in you and you are not in Christ.    


Those espousing a new cultural sexuality insist that one's sexual identity is determined within your mother's womb.  You have no choice in the matter.  Those embracing this view tell us that even though some people may appear to be either male or female, who they really are may be the opposite.  It's called orientation, not preference.  Following the same logic, I therefore insist that by virtue of my second birth I am a new human creation.  Outwardly, I may look like a traditional human being, but there's something within me that makes me distinctly different from what my exterior suggests. 


I conclude that if I'm encouraged not to question ones sexual orientation, by the same token, others should be encouraged not to question my new spiritually orientated humanness.  I should therefore benefit from all human and civil rights legislation guaranteed to those of other sexual and cultural identities, which I believe is not always the case these days.  Those in Christ, or born again Christians as they're often called, are a distinct cultural identity unto themselves.  As a distinct culture within a multicultural community, Christians should have the legal protection to both express themselves and live in such a way that doesn't inhibit who they have become via their second birth.      


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