Rabbi Bernheim on homosexual marriage and adoption...

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This piece on the destructiveness of sodomite marriage written by the Chief Rabbi of France, Gilles Bernheim, is must reading. First Things shrunk it down somewhat from the length of the original and it's still quite long, but do read it. There are some obvious failures due to Rabbi Bernheim's denial of the Trinitarian Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. For instance, I noted in his explanation of  the theological significance of sexuality, Genesis 1:26 wasn't mentioned: "Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness..." Quite sad.

On the other hand, rarely have I read so much useable wisdom on the battle over sexuality in our world today—from the supposed "right of adoption," to the right of a child to a father and mother, to the destructiveness of our use of the word 'gender,' to the larger meaning and significance for society of these attacks upon the home. Here are some excerpts to whet your appetite...

On the current state of the debate:

...it is a matter of the greatest importance to make clear the true implications of the negation of sexual difference and to debate publicly what is at stake rather than falling back on principles, such as equality, that flatter those who set themselves up as their standard bearers, even though the way these principles are invoked to justify the homosexual-marriage agenda does not stand up to critical scrutiny. This subject deserves better than the court of political correctness, whose authority, advocates of homosexual marriage hope, will prevail until the law is voted on—a tribunal they defend by means of disqualifying caricatures against anyone who dares to question their project and their motives. 

Two competing views of marriage, one which celebrates and builds on sexual difference and one which suppresses it:

The argument for marriage for all conceals a split between two existing visions of marriage. According to one worldview, which I share with a great number of people, both believers and nonbelievers, marriage is not only the recognition of a loving attachment. It is the institution that articulates the union between man and woman as part of the succession of generations. It is the establishment of a family—that is, a social cell that creates a set of parent–child relations among its members. Beyond the common life of two individuals, it organizes the life of a community consisting of descendants and ancestors. So understood, marriage is a fundamental act in the construction and the stability of individuals as well as of society.

According to another worldview, marriage is an obsolete and rigid institution, the absurd legacy of a traditional and alienating society. Is it not paradoxical to hear those who share this worldview raising their voices in favor of homosexual marriage? Why do those who reject marriage and prefer free unions demonstrate alongside activists in favor of homosexual marriage?

Whichever worldview you hold, it is clear that what is going on behind the slogan of “marriage equality” is a substitution: An institution fraught with legal, cultural, and symbolic significance would be replaced by a de-sexed legal category, thus undermining the foundation of individuals and of the family. In the name of equality and the struggle against discrimination, should we suppress all references to sexual difference in relations between citizens and the state, beginning with the marriage ceremony and the family records that issue from this ceremony?

The child's right to a genealogy:

Father and mother represent a genealogy for the child. The child needs a clear and coherent genealogy in order to find his place as an individual. What has always and will always constitute our humanity is the capacity for language in a sexually differentiated body and as part of a genealogy. To identify a child’s parentage is not only to indicate who will raise the child, with whom he will have affective relations, and who will serve as his adults of reference. It is also, most important, to situate him in a generational chain. The chain guarantees each individual a place in the world in which he lives, for he knows where he came from. Today we face the immense risk of irreversibly scrambling the chain of generations. Just as one cannot destroy the foundations of a house without the house collapsing, one cannot reject the foundations of our society without putting that society in danger. 

The crux of the matter:

“Homosexual parenting” is not parenting. The term itself was invented to mitigate the impossibility of homosexuals’ being parents. This new foundation, invented to promote the legal option of giving a child two “parents” of the same sex, is part of a fiction. Neither marriage nor parenthood has ever been based on the sexuality of individuals but rather on sex itself...

What the adopted child needs:

The adopted child needs a father and mother even more than other children. At the deepest level, viscerally, he desires to find a place close to the basic cell that gave him life: a father and a mother. The adopted child is burdened by the simultaneous traumas of abandonment and of the family’s double identity. Even more than other children, this child needs a clear sense of a biological chain. This is because he or she has no sense of being the fruit of a loving union. He was not desired, he has no one’s eyes, and he cannot recognize himself in any member of his new family.

It is common for the adopted child to reject one of the two sexes. It is therefore important that the child be able to identify with two parents of different sexes: with his mother, because he needs to be reconciled with the woman; and with his father, in order to know the presence of a man, without whom his mother would not have been able to have a child.

Homosexual adoption thus risks aggravating the trauma of the abandoned child...

Why feminists want us to talk about "gender" rather than "sex:"

LGBT activists wish to deny sexual difference. One of their tools is “gender theory.” First used by feminists in their struggle for sexual equality, gender theory was taken up by homosexual activists in their fight against sexual difference. In the 1960s, Anglo-Saxon feminist movements denounced the social differences that persisted between men and women based solely on sexual difference. Their ideas gave birth to the notion of “gender,” which can be defined as the social role attributed to each sex. Gender is relative to norms and standards that determine what is considered masculine or feminine. In other words, it defines the difference and the social hierarchy between men and women as a function of their sex. Such gender norms are supposed to be the systematic basis for male domination over women.

Whereas sex is a matter of biological difference between men and women, gender refers to social differences based on these sexual differences.

Tim Bayly

Tim serves Clearnote Church, Bloomington, Indiana. He and Mary Lee have five children and big lots of grandchildren.

Want to get in touch? Send Tim an email!