A few weeks ago a reader posted a comment asking if I had watched Perry Stone on TBN. "Entire 30 minute episode with historical evidence about Sodom and the homosexual sin (out in the streets) that brought it down," he wrote.
Well I don't often watch TBN and have never watched Perry Stone, but of course you can find him online. The episode referred to is #441 - The Zoar Factor.
True to the form of Christians that pick and choose verses and mis-interpret them to demonize gays, Mr. Stone does the same thing with Hebrew Scripture, taking a passage from the book of Jasher and after misinterpreting the verse, forgetting all of the words around it. He focused on one verse.
Here is what Jasher 19:3 says: And by desire of their four judges the people of Sodom and Gomorrah had beds erected in the streets of the cities, and if a man came to these places they laid hold of him and brought him to one of their beds, and by force made him to lie in them.
Those are the words displayed on the screen, but Mr. Stone mis-quotes the end, saying "and by force made him to lie with them."
There is a big difference between "in" and "with".
So I wondered what the verses that followed said.
And as he lay down, three men would stand at his head and three at his feet, and measure him by the length of the bed, and if the man was less than the bed these six men would stretch him at each end, and when he cried out to them they would not answer him.
And if he was longer than the bed they would draw together the two sides of the bed at each end, until the man had reached the gates of death.
And if he continued to cry out to them, they would answer him, saying, Thus shall it be done to a man that cometh into our land.
And when men heard all these things that the people of the cities of Sodom did, they refrained from coming there.
There is not a word in there that would lead one to believe they are talking about forced sex between men, but that is what Stone implies. In fact, that is what he bases his entire show on.
You can read Jasher 19 here and you will learn that the people of Sodom went on to starve and torture visitors. It seems this is the abomination that may have been looked upon by God with disfavor.
In fact, read on. Just after covering a woman with honey and then placing her before a swarm of bees that were stinging her all over, and as she was being ignored by the people:
And the Lord was provoked at this and at all the works of the cities of Sodom, for they had abundance of food, and had tranquility amongst them, and still would not sustain the poor and the needy, and in those days their evil doings and sins became great before the Lord.
And the Lord sent for two of the angels that had come to Abraham's house, to destroy Sodom and its cities.
In fact, nowhere are relations between same sex partners mentioned.
As for Stone, he has no credibility. He goes on to say that the same abominations are taking place in the United States. Well, yeah, we are not "sustaining the poor and the needy." But it has nothing to do with homosexuality!!!
Stone goes on to compare judges in Biblical times permitting torture of visitors to judges in the United States making rulings (about gay rights is implied). Apples and oranges?
He blames the hurricane in New Orleans and the mildew that resulted on a curse from the Lord (he says "mildew" is biblical), and the city of Galveston's storm damage last year on the Bible's admonition that it rains upon the just and unjust, and says just as Lot (who was a just man) had to relocate, so the "just" citizens of hurricane damaged areas have to relocate.
Give me a break!