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Thursday, March 15, 2007
(9:42 AM) | Stephen:
In Which I Praise a Southern Baptist Theologian

Albert Mohler, Jr., the president of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary - the seminary of choice for that denomination - has made some rather intriguing comments about homosexuality, the limits of our medical knowledge and the ethics of intervening in the womb over our children's various characteristics that we might find unacceptable.

Mohler's remarks are the first time that such a prominent member of the Southern Baptist Convention has suggested that there is a biological basis for homosexuality. I tend to think that this admission completely undermines their opposition to homosexuality since it removes it from the realm of an individuals choice. However, as I noted before, the ability for an individual to choose is not as important in the Calvinistic American Evangelical movement as it is among Arminians or those Calvinists that have followed the classical liberal tradition. Therefore, Mohler is not suggesting that homosexuality should be accepted; it's still a sin.

What he does suggest is that once we are able to identify exactly what it is that "makes" a person homosexual, we will be able to develop treatments, applicable while still in the womb, that will "fix" a child's homosexuality and ensure their heterosexuality.

Now that's bold. Really, I'm not being sarcastic. It takes quite a bit of courage for a man in his position to say such things. "I wrote the article intending to start a conversation, and I think I've been successful at that," Mohler is quoted as saying. I'm certainly willing to believe him on this, and he has indeed been successful. Because of him there's going to be a bunch of Southern Baptist seminarians, pastors and laity that will be discussing whether or not homosexuality has a biological basis. That's a good thing.

They will also be discussing the issue of how far we can and should go to modify our children while in the womb. This is an extremely touchy subject, of course. But Christians, just like anyone else, need to be talking about this. The time is already here when we can modify our children's eye and hair color, even their gender, I believe. We can also fix such things as spinal bifida in the womb, and are creating ever more accurate tests for Down Syndrome and possibly some ways to treat that. How far is too far? What if Mohler is right about our ability to prove that homosexuality is biologically based and we develop ways to "fix" it in the womb?

Better that Christians talk about this now, even if many will just try to dismiss it, than to be caught entirely by surprise. Mohler is going to take some huge hits for this, and though he is obviously not on "my" side of this issue, I applaud him for being willing to step out and say something about it.

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