Bharathi is a 25 year old man. His congregation has 45 members. At ten years old, he says a woman at a church near his home took pity on him and took him in. It was there that he began to read the Bible and pray in church everyday. He says he converted 2 years later at the age of twelve, and was baptized a few years after that. The reason this woman had pity on him was because he was made fun of by his classmates and neighbors. He said it was so bad that he couldn’t complete school. What was the big deal? He says he acted very feminine. Now, he refers to himself as a woman, identifying himself as transgender.
He left home more than seven years ago, and had returned for a visit a few months ago. He says his family was proud of him. These days, he is busy preaching, performing christenings, presiding over baby showers, and looking forward to the day when he can perform marriages. “I have formed a team to work with me among transgenders in Chengalpattu, to bring them into the church and help them stay out of trouble,” he says. He has been pastoring for 8 months at Evangelical Church of India (ECI) branch in Chengalpattu, on the outskirts of Chennai. He is India’s first transgender pastor.
Rememeber that woman a few years ago that had a baby, and everyone flipped out in celebration all over the news and television? You don’t? Allow me to refresh your memory. Everyone said she was a man named Thomas Beatie. She was also transgender. So all the headlines everywhere were saying that a man finally had a baby, but all that really happened was a woman who had facial hair from taking hormones, had a baby by having her wife inject her using a device (like a syringe without a needle) that contained semen from a donor. Beatie had said, “I actually opted not to do anything to my reproductive organs because I wanted to have a child one day. I see pregnancy as a process, and it doesn’t define who I am,” to Oprah back in 2008.
That’s an interesting quote, that I’m sure a lot of people will not find interesting. Beatie admitted that she needed the right plumbing for the job. It’s that plumbing that has defined gender always. To think otherwise and seek the changing of your gender is technically a disorder called “Gender Identity Disorder.” Now, I realize that this is very politically incorrect, as people are fighting to have this disorder become accepted. Let me tell you of another disorder in which people do not feel comfortable with their own bodies. In fact, they too seek to change their appearance, convinced that the way they were born is not the way they ought to be. It is called Apotemnophilia. This disorder causes the ones suffering from it to be fully convinced that their perfectly healthy limbs (arms or legs) must be removed. It’s also known as body integrity identity disorder. Now, I think we can agree that the removal of a limb poses no threat to the life of an individual. Should we also fight to make this acceptable? What is the difference between removing an arm or removing a penis? Perhaps one day it might one day be acceptable. All this type of argumentation will do is have all these disorders accepted as normal one day. So let’s not argue subjectively. What does the Bible say?
“And He answered and said, “Have you not read that He who created them from the beginning MADE THEM MALE AND FEMALE, and said, ‘FOR THIS REASON A MAN SHALL LEAVE HIS FATHER AND MOTHER AND BE JOINED TO HIS WIFE, AND THE TWO SHALL BECOME ONE FLESH ‘?”
Here, Jesus reminds His crowd what has been known from the beginning – that God created man and female in order that they should marry and become one flesh. We should recognize a disorder when someone is born with male genitalia, and feels like they should be removed. We should recognize a disorder when a woman is born feeling like she should be a man. It is unnatural, and Paul speaks of the danger of committing unnatural acts.
“For this reason God gave them over to degrading passions; for their women exchanged the natural function for that which is unnatural, 27 and in the same way also the men abandoned the natural function of the woman and burned in their desire toward one another, men with men committing indecent acts and receiving in their own persons the due penalty of their error.”
Now, I know that some might insert verses here about homosexuality. And the above passage from Romans does focus on homosexuality. I don’t know if that is necessarily appropriate because we don’t know if this guy is a homosexual. There are transgender men, who consider themselves girls, who still get with girls. I haven’t read anything that would suggest he is homosexual. So, I just want to focus on the natural differences between the two genders. In Romans 1:26-27, we read that the men and women exchanged their natural functions for unnatural. Paul identifies this confusion of what is natural as God having given such a one over to degrading passions. He names it an “error” and that it will receive its due penalty.
Like Beatie had admitted, she wanted to keep her organs because she knew that it was naturally a requirement for child bearing. And she and her wife, and hopefully everyone, realizes that the sperm her wife injected into her was also a requirement. Naturally, men produce sperm, and women produce eggs. I know this is a no-brainer to almost everyone, but it bears repeating. This is an objective truth that we see even in animals – a male and a female come together and have babies.
Bharathi, and those like him, need to recognize they have a disorder, and should stop. At the very least, stop preaching. Bharanti may be sinning greatly, but we all have. Christ died so that those who believe in Him will have His righteousness credited to them, that they may stand justified before God. In turn, their sins will not be counted against them.
I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: similar to the way you are one being (human) and one person (insert name here), God is one being (God) and three persons – Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. God isn’t one being who wears three masks, and there aren’t three gods. He is one being and 3 persons. Christians describe God’s nature by calling it the Trinity. God has a law that all of humanity is subject to. Whether humanity believes in Him or not, they know that this law exists because we are each created in the image of God. This doesn’t mean that we have good godlike looks (sorry for those of you who think you do), but that we have been created with certain attributes like a sense of morals, logic, reason and justice. Everyone has them. These attributes have no explanation and/or place in a godless world that evolved from raw material. The image of God in us is corrupted though because of our sinful nature. That’s why our sense of morals, logic, reason, etc isn’t perfect and we oftentimes contradict each other and say things like morals are dependant upon the culture.
We inherited this nature from the very first human couple (our great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great… well you get the picture… grandparents). They were created without sin, but disobeyed God. As a result, their sin corrupted their nature and has been passed on ever since. This is why Scripture says that we are enslaved to sin and dead in it. So all of humanity is constantly sinning against God and love to do so. As a result, each and every person is building up a debt against God. This law breaking will not go unpunished. The wrath of God abides on all those who break His law. Not to say that folks aren’t nice or are unable to do nice things. It’s that their works amount to nothing, much like a law breaker attempting to ask a judge to let him off for a crime because of the many times he had done good things. A corrupt judge might. But a judge who is perfect and upholds the law perfectly must execute justice. And one day we will all stand before God our Creator.
God the Son, the second person of the Trinity, was born of a virgin, grew up and became a man. His name was Jesus and lived perfectly obedient to His own law so that He could credit that obedience to those who believe in Him. He was then killed on a cross in order to endure the wrath of God that was due sinners. His death on the cross was the price tag for the debt built up by those who constantly break His law and yet believe this good news. On the cross, He cried out , “It is finished” or “It is paid for” and then died. Jesus was then buried for three days, but rose from the dead. It was the sign He promised people to prove His claims about being God and the Savior were true. He appeared to over 500 hundred people, as well as His followers and then ascended to the right hand of God the Father where He rules and will continue to do so until all enemies are under His feet, the last enemy being death. He will then return bodily to judge the living and the dead. Everyone everywhere will be resurrected to be judged based on works. For those who have their own works to show, they will be cast into everlasting destruction. For those who have Christ’s works to show, they will live with God forever.
What can we say of a pastor who so eagerly embraces Scriptural falsehood, making it a personal mission, teaching what is contrary to Scripture? Such a man is a wolf and must be given repentance and faith. Pray that God grants him these things.