“No one whose testicles are crushed or whose male organ is cut off shall enter the assembly of the Lord.” Deut. 23:1
“A woman shall not wear man’s clothing, nor shall a man put on a woman’s clothing; for whoever does these things is an abomination to the Lord your God.” Deut. 22:5
I have a problem with these passages.
No, I haven’t heard a sermon on either (and pray to God I never do) but I have a problem with the concepts listed here. Correction: I have a problem with the theologies of manhood/womanhood and sexuality within the Church. Too often the notion propagated in the Church is that men need to be men like those in the bible. Women need to meet the Proverbs 31 standard. But what about those in the Church who don’t fit either stereotypical means of outreach? What about the women in my church who don’t want to have a tea party? What about the men who don’t want to do “manly” things? I’ve gone to, been a part of, and tried to be active in the Church my entire life. And my entire life I have only seen the continued perpetuation of meaningless theologies of, well, crap.
The Church has so concerned itself with whether a guy wearing makeup or a dress is a problem, or a woman might end up being president, or how the West is losing its Christian values, so concerned itself with these trivialities we have ostracized, demonized, and harmed people.
The Church has taken abstract ideas – justice, manhood, womanhood, sexualities, etc. – and held them over people, attempting to fit people into a neat mold. So valued ideas over people that people no longer give two craps about our theologies.
But, this is not simply an angry rant. It’s Easter today. And Easter is the Church wide celebration of Jesus rising from the dead, kicking death’s ass, and putting us on pedestals. But it is more than this. Jesus rising from death to life is an affirmation of life. One of the key facets of Jesus’ earthly ministry was helping people live life to the full. Which implies to not live life to the full, which Jesus claims is why he came, is to live a dead life. As a friend put it: it’s Jesus vs. zombies.
But Jesus didn’t come bearing more rules that we have to follow. He wants bus to live fully. How, though? By loving God and our neighbor. All else, then, is secondary. If living fully, which includes your well being and happiness, involves dressing in a way which makes you happy, do it. If it means pursuing some other relationships, do it. The simple fact is, on Easter, needles theologies on trivialities need to go. Life is what Easter is about. We are no longer living dead, we are truly alive.