Op-ed: The Crisis at the Border Reveals the Real Sodomites

The anti-LGBT and anti-immigration lobbies fail to remember the meaning of the word sodomy.

BY Eliel Cruz

July 15 2014 5:55 AM ET

Anti-immigration activist Sabina Durden (right) and immigration sympathizer Mary Estrada (left) debate during a protest outside of the U.S. Border Patrol Murrieta Station on July 7, 2014 in Murrieta, California.

There are a ton of Christians sodomizing each other who don’t even know it. You’d think sodomy is something you would remember. I know I certainly would. Getting sodomized is never pleasant, and a lot of times it comes from someone who claims to be a Christian.

No, I’m not talking about anal sex. Sodomy is about inhospitality.

The term sodomy is inaccurately used to describe anal sex, both by progressives and right-wing pundits. The term came from the biblical story of Sodom and Gomorrah, a city that was described to be so sinful and evil that it was destroyed by God. Traditional interpretations have presumed the sin of Sodom was same-sex sex due to the story of Lot and his daughters.

Genesis 19:4-8 says, “Before they had gone to bed, all the men from every part of the city of Sodom — both young and old — surrounded the house. They called to Lot, 'Where are the men who came to you tonight? Bring them out to us so that we can have sex with them.' Lot went outside to meet them and shut the door behind him and said, 'No, my friends. Don’t do this wicked thing. Look, I have two daughters who have never slept with a man. Let me bring them out to you, and you can do what you like with them.'”

Indeed, this passage speaks on same-sex rape (which is different than consensual same-sex sex) and this is what conservative Christians pinpoint as the “sin of Sodom,” while completely ignoring the fact that Lot — a man of God — offered his two virgin daughters to be gang-raped (but those are just details). What these traditional interpreters fail to include in their deduction is the rest of the Bible’s references to Sodom and Gomorrah. Or the weight that was put on hospitality in biblical times; this was back when there were no Holiday Inns or Best Westerns, and travelers who were not taken in by strangers were often robbed and left for dead.

In Ezekiel 16: 49-50, Scripture says, “Now this was the sin of your sister Sodom: She and her daughters were arrogant, overfed and unconcerned; they did not help the poor and needy. They were haughty and did detestable things before me. Therefore I did away with them as you have seen.”

So what did the Bible label as the sin of Sodom and Gomorrah? No, not man-on-man action, but the “overfed and unconcerned”; those who did not help the poor and needy, those who were inhospitable. As author Emily Timbol recently tweeted, “Kind of changes the term ‘sodomite.’”

Sodom was not destroyed because it was filled with same-sex sex. It was destroyed because the town was so vile and hostile to strangers that all men (note: the Bible doesn’t say just the “gay”) within it attempted to gang-rape two traveling visitors, demanding they be turned over to their doom.

Jesus, in Matthew chapter 10, refers back to Sodom, when telling His disciples of the fate that would fall on any town who refused to give them shelter or aid. Like the strangers visiting Lot — and many people in need today — Jesus’ disciples went out without food, clothing, or any place to stay at night.

Right now there's another group of people without food, clothing, or a place to stay. More than 52,000 unaccompanied minors who have crossed the United States border since last October, and the conditions they face are terrible.

And the response to this crisis has only highlighted the already tense situation between the GOP and President Obama, as Republicans were quick to object to the president’s $3.7 billion request for this emergency situation. The conversations aimed at resolvinh this crisis have hardly been productive. “You know what I’m hearing? Round ’em up and ship ’em back,” said Iowa senator Tom Harkin, expressing his disgust with the collective response of the GOP. “It sounds like we’re dealing with cattle or some kind of livestock.”

Americans who are angry over food, water, and clothing being given to the needy children detained at our borders are the sodomites. Our country is overrun with them.

As a result of the publicity surrounding this dire situation, sodomites have come out in full force. One of the proud sodomites is the Internet-famous Hobby Lobby supporter, Holly, who sent out some pretty sodomizing tweets about the 52,000 children who have been left with little to no aid.
 

What Holly and her sodomizing friends fail to understand is Scripture’s severe commentary about inhospitality.

In Hebrews 13: 2, Scripture reminds us “Do not forget to show hospitality to strangers, for by so doing some people have shown hospitality to angels without knowing it,” a clear reference to the angels Lot protected. In Isaiah chapter 1 we see a prescription for the sin of Sodom. In verse 17, the Bible states, “Learn to do right; seek justice. Defend the oppressed. Take up the cause of the fatherless; plead the case of the widow.”

Sound familiar?

Then in the Gospel, in case those references weren’t clear enough, Jesus really nails it in a chapter referred to as the “Judgment of Nations.” In this passage, Jesus tells his apostles that what they did to the “least of these” they did for him — emphasizing the need for us to welcome those in need with food, shelter, and clothing. The consequence for those refusing to help those in need? A fate worse than Sodom.

Right-wing homophobes shout that America is becoming like Sodom and Gomorrah. With the way they’re responding to the border crisis, they’re kind of right.

ELIEL CRUZ is a bisexual Christian covering bisexuality for The Advocate. Eliel also frequently writes on the topics of sexuality, religion, pop culture, and media at The Huffington Post, Believe Out Loud, and Mic. You can follow Eliel on Twitter
 

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