Bill Muehlenberg's commentary on issues of the day...

Homosexual Lawsuit against the Bible

Jul 23, 2008

If nothing else, the steady stream of madness and moral decrepitude one encounters on a daily basis at least keeps life interesting. It is hard to stay bored in such an environment. Consider as an example this quite recent news item:

“A Michigan man is seeking millions in compensation from two Christian publishers for emotional distress and mental instability he received from Bible’s referring to homosexuality as a sin. Bradley LaShawn Fowler says his constitutional rights were infringed by both Zondervan Publishing Co. and Thomas Nelson Publishing who he claims deliberately caused homosexuals to suffer by misinterpretation of the Bible. Fowler, 39, is seeking $60 million from Zondervan and another $10 million from Thomas Nelson. Zondervan has stated that he’s suing the wrong party whether his claims are credible or not because the publishing house does not translate the Bible nor do they own the copyright for the translations.”

There are many responses that come to mind here about this bizarre scenario. Let me mention just a few.

Firstly, this is yet another example of the fact that we live in an overwhelmingly litigious society.  We now live in an age in which everybody is suing somebody for something. We have gone mad with lawsuits, court cases, tort laws, and all sorts of often unnecessary litigation. The motto seems to be, “Don’t just get angry, get even, and sue the living daylights out of the guy”.

This case is also an example of a world in which rights-talk has gone mad. Everyone everywhere seems to be insisting on this right or that right. There are now rights for everything it seems. And these rights are simply being pulled out of the hat. They never existed before, but people are just making them up as they go along.

Perhaps one of the most strange and nefarious rights to come on the scene lately is the right not to be offended. I am not sure where this idea came from. It certainly is not found in any major human rights declarations or national constitutions. But it has become all the rage to expect not be offended by anything or anyone.

But I would have thought that daily life in a fallen world will mean offences will arise all the time. If you are in a hurry, a red light will seem offensive. So should we sue the government for red lights? A Coke lover may be offended by a Pepsi. A Manchester United supporter may be offended by any rival soccer club. A nudist may be offended at clothes. A Hindu may well be offended by the exclusive nature of Christian truth claims.

The list is endless. But surely turning every offence and grievance into a lawsuit or a court case is not the way to go in a democratic society. Lawyers may love it, but it will soon bankrupt any open society.

And in the past, rights never stood on their own. They were always bundled together with duties, obligations and responsibilities. Any society that demands various rights without corresponding responsibilities is asking for, and getting, trouble.

This case also illustrates the never-ending set of demands of the radical homosexual lobby. Their agenda is never satisfied, and their grievances are endless. Indeed, this is but another example of how militant homosexuals seek to shut down all public debate about the issue. Instead of allowing for the free flow of ideas and values, they want to shut down any and all opposing viewpoints.

They may talk all they like about tolerance and acceptance, but this is all just one-way traffic. They show very little understanding, acceptance, tolerance or openness to those who happen to disapprove of the homosexual agenda.

Finally, this case shows the folly of the various types of legislation which have sprung up around the Western world. I refer to various sorts of equal opportunity laws, discrimination legislation, and the like. These bits of legislation are really designed to stifle debate in general and silence Christians in particular. Hate crime laws are the main example of this, and presumably this is what Mr Fowler from Michigan has in mind.

Indeed, it is becoming quite commonplace now for homosexual activists to claim the Bible is one big exercise in “hate speech”. Because the Bible clearly states that homosexuality is wrong and sinful, homosexuals and their supporters are seeking to argue that the Bible should be banned, because it engages in hatred toward homosexuals.

These trends, taken together, nicely dovetail in what we now see happening, as exemplified by this Michigan case. A world which is losing its moral bearings, forgetting about common sense, and resorting to neo-paganism, becomes a very nice breeding ground for this sort of insanity. The soil has been nicely prepared for these sorts of nutto cases.

Indeed, we can only expect to see many more such cases, as long as these destructive trends are allowed to continue. It really is only a matter of time before most Western nations fully outlaw the Bible, all in the name of acceptance, tolerance and homosexual rights. Whether that day comes sooner or later really depends on what we do about it. And can I suggest that silence will only hasten that day.

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17 Responses to Homosexual Lawsuit against the Bible

  • Speaking of the you-know-who folks, readers might profit from going to Google or Yahoo and putting in “God to Same-Sexers: Hurry Up.” Yes, it’s still legal to read it!
    Bruce Rockwell

  • Thanks Bruce

    Yes Scripture offers both a harsh word and a soft word on this subject. Homosexuality is without doubt a sin and an indication of a world which has turned its back on God. At the same time, Jesus died for all mankind, and he desires a love relationship with each and every one of us, if we will turn to him. Thus we need to keep in prayer these folk, and all others, and hope some will find a new life in Christ, as many have already experienced.

    Bill Muehlenberg, CultureWatch

  • Bill, I agree with most of your comments but the following is hardly as accurate analogy … “If you are in a hurry, a red light will seem offensive. So should we sue the government for red lights? A Coke lover may be offended by a Pepsi. A Manchester United supporter may be offended by any rival soccer club. A nudist may be offended at clothes. …”
    Graeme Cumming

  • Thanks Graeme
    Although it wasn’t meant to be an analogy, simply some illustrations – perhaps poorly conceived – of how a hundred times a day we may be offended by things. The point simply was, who says there is a right not to be offended?
    Bill Muehlenberg, CultureWatch

  • Me thinks the litigant does not like to be reminded of his guilt.
    Stephen White

  • Great article Bill. It highlights the increasing hostility towards opponents of homosexuality. I guess though, the same people who have taken offence at what the Bible says about homosexuality would also have to sue the Dali Lama, publishers of the Koran and other religious texts and groups that speak out on the matter. Somehow, I suspect this won’t happen!

    George Kokonis

  • The litigant is clever in this action. Why?

    Because Zondervan pretty much admitted it doesn’t want to offend people when it started its various ‘inclusive’ language PR campaign for inclusive language bibles. And then became duplicitous in whether such was needed or not. And then decided not to be ‘offensive’ and be ‘inclusive’.

    They’ve half confessed to knowingly being offensive and have shown a willingness to appease. So reparations type settlements and guilt-monies may be likely. Oddly, Zondervan may even WANT to pay, to show how sensitive and sorry they really are. Maybe even come out with a new campaign with the all sexual orientations sensitive ‘translation’ or some such.

    Frankly it would not surprise me. IVP, Navs, Baker, Erdmanns, and others should take note and decide if they are promoting translations, correctness, sensitivity, admitting to being perceived as hateful or whatever. Or better yet, find and/or maintain a voice and not allow these to take the hit alone.

    Kokonis is correct about the Koran. Maybe the Saudis can use their money to defend Zondervan and Nelson instead of imposing sensitivity speech code (no critique of radical jihadist Islam) police actions via the UN. I’m not holding my breath.

    Joe Whitchurch, Indiana, USA

  • Bill, as I sat here reading your treatise and the replies, the following thought occurred to me. Isn’t the very concept of tolerance wrapped around the idea of it going both ways? Apparently Fowler is so busy being offended he doesn’t have time to think about what tolerance really means. Or for that matter, no time to consider America’s 1st Amendment right to free speech.

    BTW, I find it highly offensive that any litigator would be willing to tie up our already overloaded legal system by taking such ridiculous cases. Being laughed out of the courtroom would be an appropriately offensive punishment for such people, don’t you think?

    M.E. Huffmaster

  • This is actually quite funny. Doesn’t even the attempted application of this lawsuit undermine those who say they are Christians and claim the Bible says nothing against homosexual behaviour? It seems those who oppose God can only fall over each other in their darkness.
    Mark Rabich

  • The origin of this “litigation mania” is a perversion of the American Declaration of Independence. The original version speaks of “unalienable rights” and the “pursuit of happiness”. Today’s perversion says that there is an “unalienable right to happiness”. Therefore what makes me unhappy is an attack on my rights (regardless of anyone else”s rights) and must be fought out in a court of law. Unfortunately the politicians and courts have allowed this perversion to spread and prosper instead of exposing it as the lie that it is. Thus we have the most ridiculous cases being allowed to proceed and clog the judicial system and cause immense damage with the payouts way outside reason.
    What is needed is a brave person/persons who will take this error on and make it history.
    Richard Coonan

  • I wonder if I can go to court and sue for the right to ignore everything that Bradley Fowler says?
    Roger Marks

  • The whole palette of emotions – love, hate, anger, peace, fear, joy, desolation – that are displayed in human nature are all necessary for our survival, like the notes on a piano, all are equally essential. For a government to eliminate feelings of antipathy or hatred in order to produce a dehumanised society that runs like a well-oiled piece of machinery, sounds ominously like the film “Clockwork Orange,” where the behaviour of its citizens can be controlled by drugs or brain surgery. This is surely pure evolutionary humanism.

    The homosexual lobby have arrogantly set themselves up as the power and authority to dictate to Christians which parts of the Bible are acceptable and which parts are not. With the subtlety of Satan, they also appeal to a totally bogus etiquette: It sounds so much more refined and less confrontational to say intemperate in place of offensive and to say temperate instead of inoffensive. When, in good old Blighty (what used to be fondly known as Britain) Ben Summerskill, chief executive of Stonewall and Maria Eagle, the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of the Ministry of Justice (and twin sister of the lesbian Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury, Angela Eagle), demanded that only temperate religious expressions be allowed with regard to talking about homosexuality and that intemperate religious expressions might become a criminal offence, carrying a maximum of seven years in prison, ….they were appealing to our need for balance and civilised behaviour. For them to use the word offensive would be too strong, too emotive, too confrontational – intemperate even. It is an attempt to take control of the moral high ground, when in fact the behaviour of homosexuals is anything but temperate, balanced or civilised. We must beware of this verbal sleight of hand.

    David Skinner, UK

  • Wimpy churchian groups are wilfully ignorant of the fact that persecution of Christians has long been on the Homonazi agenda. Mike Adams provides another example of the Gay-stapo in action.
    Jonathan Sarfati, Brisbane

  • Jonathan, I opened up the link you gave but can’t find any reference to the article you referred to.
    Roger Marks

  • Roger, the link should work now; it was most likely a temporary glitch on the Townhall site.
    Jonathan Sarfati, Brisbane

  • If you were to look at the case dockets, you would be astounded at some of the outrageous lawsuits currently making their way through the judicial system.

    But do not be fooled. Most of these cases are deemed frivilous and dismissed as quickly as they were filed.

    In addition, it is the Civil Legal System that makes this country so great. To know that you have recourse against those who *actually* cause you harm is a great thing that very few countries offer.

    You will always have the nutjobs that file lawsuits that are completely outlandish, but don’t write an article about it until there is an actual disposition on the case.

    Because if not, you just stur the people’s emotions and accomplish nothing except disdain for the American Civil System, which is not the culprit.

    Think before writing.

    John Anthony Castro

  • Thanks John

    But the fact there may be some frivolous lawsuits does not mean no serious ones exist. And with the passage of hate crimes legislation and so on, things will only get worse.

    And thanks, but I do think before I write.

    Bill Muehlenberg, CultureWatch

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