What sounds like an oxymoron, “Gay YU students,” was actually part of the title of an article which appeared in this week’s Jerusalem Post. The full title read, “Gay YU students restart ‘arduous’ fight for approval,” (JPost 12/1/20) referring to a planned event by homosexual students who attend Jerusalem’s Yeshiva University.
The ten-year controversy continues to occupy a central place in its campus where an ongoing struggle between gay students and their supporters push the boundaries of orthodox school administrators to create the type of acceptance and atmosphere where “all” feel welcomed, integrated and fully accepted.
How are they going about that goal you may ask? It’s simple – they utilize today’s social justice terminology and standards of equity to totally change the biblical values upon which Judaism has stood since the existence of the laws and commandments prescribed by God, Himself to the people He chose to disseminate those oracles to the pagan, unbelieving world.
Yet, we are witnessing a hijacking of those same commandments at the hands of social justice warriors who have systematically and cleverly endeavored to standardize all thinking and action in order to have society conform to what they determine is the only acceptable sense of tolerance and inclusivity.
What they fail to understand is that rejection of faith-based boundaries effectively negates the very laws which are the basis of the particular lifestyle that was intended to set the Jewish people apart from a world lost in darkness. To now redefine homosexuality in order to accommodate it as “acceptable” would necessitate a complete overhaul of whole portions of the Torah which comprise the five books of Moses, upon which Jewish law rests.
While this may sound unthinkable, society has also made it unthinkable, in these days, for anyone to not appear “all-inclusive,” “fully supportive,” “recognize and respect differences,” “provide safe spaces,” or “discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation.” Those offenses are beyond unforgivable as they are tantamount to being guilty of the most grievous sin of all – BIGOTRY, a label which one instantly earns if they dare to disagree or be unwilling to accept what society has successfully rooted as the new norms.
Among those leading the social justice crusade are, oftentimes, many liberal-thinking non-orthodox and mostly secular Jews who believe that inclusivity of the LGBTQ community is a must if real societal equity is ever to become a reality. However, these new norms, parading as a rejection of bigotry, create a major dilemma for the staunch gatekeepers who guard the biblical values upon which YU is based. Their challenge is trying to appear inclusive to all, knowing that among their student body are those who are both homosexuals as well as those who support and embrace a group which has, for centuries, been seen as a deviation and a departure from the scriptural laws of the faith.
Such an image conjures up the famous scene from “Fiddler on the Roof” when Reb Tevye is faced with whether or not he can accept his daughter who has chosen to marry outside the faith. He concludes that if he bends that far, he’ll break.
Yet, Jewish institutions of all kinds, including the most orthodox, are being asked to push the boundaries and bend towards today’s standards, giving full acceptance of what has been clearly defined as sin in accordance with the Torah –
Leviticus 18:22, “You shall not lie with a male as with a woman. It is an abomination.”
As Jewish believers in Yeshua the Messiah, we do not have the luxury of rewriting scripture in order to avoid the bigotry label. God’s standards were never meant to be altered to suit time or a massive change in societal culture. Likewise, religious institutions which strive to maintain a biblical standard must not be bullied into the reshaping of God’s commandments in order to appear enlightened, woke or progressive. Sin cannot be whitewashed by us since we did not determine what constitutes it in the first place. The argument remains between the Creator and His creation, but it’s not likely that God will bend to the “woke mob” anytime soon.
His word is unchanging, eternal and the only manual for life which instructs us on how to best operate the body, soul and spirit – and it starts by bending our will to Him. Anything less than that is not the faith of a nation of kings and priests who were chosen to be a light to the nations.