FACT: Had the early Christians done as the modern Christians, waited until they were legally recognized, a majority and tried to let the legislators to make homosexuality against the law, they would have surely failed!
Why? . . . Because . . .
FACT: . . . had the Early Christians lived for 300 years "tolerating and accepting homosexuality because it was legal and widely practiced", and because it brought them increased acceptance and peace with the Romans;
They never would have had the WILL to then take a stand against the homosexuals in their Churches, to THEN reject them as sinners . . . AFTER accepting their sin as "acceptable-Christian-behaviour" for those centuries.
FACT: The ONLY way for Christ to successfully build His Church to understand that "homosexuality is an ABOMINATION unto the Lord", was to stand against it from the very beginning regardless what it cost in disfavor from the Romans:
>> by condemning it personally in their family and neighbors;
>> by condemning it personally in their leaders and their laws;
>> by ignoring trying to 'convince judges and legislators' to outlaw it;
FACT: Sadly, the Modern Church in Western Culture is failing miserably in this battle by DOING THE EXACT OPPOSITE of the Apostle s and the Early Church:
We the Modern Church. . .
>> FAILS to condemn it personally in our family and neighbors;
>> FAILS to condemn it personally in our leaders and their laws;
>> STRIVES MIGHTILY to 'convince judges and legislators' to outlaw it;
** We Modern Christians are willing to take a "Strong stand against homosexuality . . . BUT ONLY in the privacy of a voting booth!
** We Modern Christians are petrified of any kind of personal confrontation, with anyone, anywhere, anything in public! (Especially if it could effect our jobs or income, money being the 'real God' in the USA!)
Are we, the Modern Church USA, too far gone from our "First Love to "repent and do the First Works?" Only God knows for sure, but if there is even a tenth-of-a-percent of Ministers willing to do the right things but CONFUSED as to what that is . . .
. . . let us literally obey one of Christ's Last Commands:
> > REPENT! (completely change our mind-thinking-strategy)
> > And do the works of the First Christians!
Following is a basic TIME-LINE of the early Christians Success against homosexuality
ROME AD 125, Apostle John and his disciples, Polycarp, These gay marriages continued until Christianity became a growing influence within the Roman Empire, which took about 100 years after the death of the last of Christ's 12 Apostles, with Apostle John and his disciple Polycarp reaching to AD 125-130.
ROME AD 222-235, Emperor Heliogabalus, Last Pagan Emperor:
Emperor Heliogabalus, reigning from A 218-222 was the last truly pagan Roman Emperor. He was an initiate into a Syrian sun-cult, and like the followers of Cybele, he frequently and openly engaged in homosexual temple prostitution.
After his murder, however, his cousin Emperor Alexander Severus reigned from AD 222-35. Emperor Alexander was the son of a Christian mother, who resolved to put a stop to such anti-Scriptural decadent pleasures.
ROME AD 222-235, Emperor Severus, Homosexuals Active in Public Life Deported:
Emperor Alexander Severus deported homosexuals who were active in public life, somewhat using the Greek custom of 'ostracization of unsavory Public figures' - and heavily taxed the "exsoleti — homosexual prostitutes", as well as heterosexual prostitutes and procurers.
Severus refrained from totally suppressing the 'exsoleti', only because his decrees would not be supported by popular opinion.After his death, Rome was in a nearly constant state of civil war - a real culture war - running through a dozen emperors in as many years.
Nearly two-thirds of the Empire's population was Near Eastern — Syrians, Jews, Iberians, and a significantly large number of people who worshiped Cybele. Society became radically fragmented by diversity and lost its Roman unity.
ROME AD 244-249, Emperor Philip, Homosexual Prostitution Outlawed:
The Emperor Philip, himself the son of a Bedouin chief and a Christian mother, attempted to stem the tide by altogether outlawing the 'homosexual prostitutes', the most visible practitioners of un-Christian practices and "exploiters" of the immigrant population.
So once again homophobia was essentially a Christian doctrine against "foreign pagan ways."
ROME AD 305-6, the Council of Elvira forbade giving last rites to pederasts
The organized Christian Church began to pass its judgement. In 305-6 the Council of Elvira forbade the giving of last rites to pederasts.
ROME AD 313, Empire united under Constantine, who legalized Christianity by 'Edict of Milan'
Constantine the great issued his decree, the "edict of toleration which finally made Christianity 'legal' in the Roman Empire. Finally, a Christian could openly admit it without fear of being fed to the lions and without being forced to take the "Mark-of-the-Beast (Rome)"
MARK OF THE BEAST HISTORICALLY:
> >  Non-free citizens were 'branded in the forehead' if they submitted, legally, in witness of duly appointed Officers of the Roman Court,to publicly proclaim to Rome that "Caesar is Lord!" and denounce Jesus is NOT Lord!
> >  IF they were Free-Citizens they could not be branded but had to 'carry-in-their-right-hand' their papers declaring the signed-sworn-stamped-statement - to publicly proclaim to Rome that "Caesar is Lord!" and denounce Jesus is NOT Lord!
> >  If people of the Empire, free or not free, submitted to Rome in these decrees, they were permitted to "Buy, sell, and do legal business in the Empire.
> >  If people of the Empire, free or not free, DID NOT submit to Rome in these decrees - and legally, in witness of duly appointed Officers of the Roman Court, and to the contrary,
publicly proclaimed to Rome that "Caesar is NOT Lord at ALL!" . . .
. . . but rather "Jesus Christ is LORD of ALL!" . . . including Rome and Caesars: "Jesus Christ is KING of Kings and LORD of Lords!!
These Christians were put death in the first century, and as the Empire slowly moderated toward accepting them as they grew to become an ever-larger-percentage, they were not so often killed as simply NOT permitted to "Buy, sell, and do legal business in the Empire" in the third century, in the days of Diocletian - and the Caesars preceding him - just before Constantine the great took power!
> > This decree forcing them to take the "Mark of the Empire, (just like our Federal USA Seal) the Name of the Caesar, or the number of the name, . . . would be much like American Citizens having to have the 'state and federal seal' on property deeds and automobile titles,and vendors licenses, all with a properly assigned "Social Security Number attached to that name."
ROME AD 314, The Council of Ancyra forbade homosexuals receiving Baptism or Holy Communion
In 314 the Council of Ancyra in Asia Minor excluded all homosexuals from receiving the sacrament, and thankfully, their decision became the authority for all later ecclesiastical laws.
THE GREAT CHRISTIAN EMPEROR: CONSTANTINE THE GREAT!
ROME AD 323, Constantine-the-Great converted to Christianity and decreed against Homosexuality
In 323 the Emperor Constantine was fully converted to Christianity, and the doom of homosexuals was sealed. Constantine the great was truly Great. He reunited the Roman Empire, provided free land to build houses of worship, gave all people a day-off every seventh day to rest and assemble as the Church.
He made Churches to be "tax-free and Ministers as well. His mother was also a very devout Christians and they developed Churches, Bible Colleges and Pilgrimages to the Holy Land of Jesus.
Constantine also sought to stamp-out the evil sin of homosexuality, believing it to be a great abomination unto God. Constantine spent millions of dollars - not in Roman Conquest, Sports stadiums, Coliseums, or Parthenon for false Gods, but for Christian Houses of Worships
ROME AD 342, Sons of Constantine-the-Great - Constans and Constantius - decreed Rome must be rid of Homosexuals
Constantine-the-Great's sons, the Emperors Constans and Constantius, who ruled respectively the Eastern and Western Empires, in 342 jointly decreed that "the law must be armed with an avenging sword" to rid the land of "passive" homosexuals, "those men who marry men as if they were women."
These two gallant Emperors continued the suppression of the seemingly irrepressible homosexual prostitution.
ROME AD 375, St. Basal demanded 15 years Penitence for Homosexuals seeking repentance, before receiving Communion
Obviously, there was no way for there leading Ministers to enforce their practices, but just like if Billy Graham, Robert Schuller, Joel Osteen and Joyce Meyers all came out with such statements and practices, it would have a great effect in the USA!
ROME AD 375, Gregory of Nyssa also demanded 15 years Penitence for Homosexuals seeking repentance, before receiving Communion
Church regulations became equally severe. St Basil in 375 and Gregory of Nyssa in 390 demanded of homosexuals a 15-year penitential of self-mortification while going without the sacrament — along with those who committed adultery, pederasty, incest, bestiality, idolatry, witchcraft and murder.
ROME AD 390, Emperor Valentinian decreed burning at the stake for homosexuals
In 390 the Emperor Valentinian decreed burning at the stake as a fit punishment for homosexuals — in memory of the purifying flames which devoured the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah.
ROME AD 395, Emperor Theodosius outlawed all religions other than Christianity, and Codified Laws against Homosexuality
Five years later the Emperor Theodosius outlawed all religions other than Christianity, and codified the laws against heresy, treason, and homosexuality.
ROME FALLS AD 476, Though there were different battles, usually this date is accepted:
But the Roman Empire was collapsing. In 410 Rome was sacked by the Goths, then re-sacked by the Vandals again in 455. Did that mean that things would get better for homosexuals? No, God gave the Christians favor with the new Conquerors.
POST-ROME AD 506, Visigoth Alaric II decreed burning at the stake for homosexuals.
The Barbarians adopted the laws of the conquered, and in 506 the Visigoth Alaric II decreed burning at the stake for homosexuals. With God's greatest blessings, these Christian attitudes toward sin pervaded the nearly defunct Empire, i.e. the whole of Western civilization.
THE GREAT CHRISTIAN EMPEROR: JUSTINIAN THE GREAT!
POST-ROME AD 529, Byzantine Emperor Justinian closed Platonic Academy (Pro-Homosexual):
The Byzantine Emperor Justinian in 529 closed the Platonic Academy in Athens, bringing to an end the era of classical learning. Justinian believe the Word of God!
He believed firmly that the Scriptures' account of Sodom and Gomorrah was an example of how God destroyed cities with homosexual citizens, and feared it would happen again in his realm. So he decided to salvage the Empire by the methodical suppression of homosexuality.
In Justinian's "new laws" he says: "because of such impious conduct (homosexuality) cities have indeed perished. . . . Because of such crimes there are famines, earthquakes, and pestilences" [SOURCE - Novellae 77, AD 538].
In 543 a plague swept through the Byzantine capital of Constantinople, and probably as a terrified reaction to this, Justinian the following year issued another "new law," exhorting the "sodomites" to repent: "There will be no relaxation of enquiry and correction so far as this matter is concerned" (Novellae 144).
Beginning of Castration
Justinian ordered the Prefect to arrest any homosexual who refused to repent, and to subject him "to the extreme punishments." The punitive correction was as follows:
> > First the convicted homosexual's testicles would be cut off. > > Then he would be led, or dragged, naked through the streets for public humiliation.
> > Finally he would be burned at the stake.
Emperor Justinian saw to it that ever two Bishops - Isaiah of Rhodes and Alexander of Diospolis - equally received this treatment.
Procopius in his contemporary Anecdota says that Justinian's laws were carried out thoroughly. The records are scarce, but the scale on which Justinian performed such public services may be imagined by the fact that he once urged the 'repenting and conversion of 70,000 people in a single campaign.
POST-ROME AD 600-1600, Golden Years of Roman Church"The sins of Sodom and Gomorrah were by now irrevocably associated with ideas about the corruption and decay of the state, and "sodomites" were regarded as a threat to unstable medieval societies.
Again, written records of persecution are scarce — partly because when a sodomite was burned at the stake, all of his papers and the trial records were burned along with him in order to prevent contagion. Many of the anti-gay laws during this period were re-enactments of older statutes. Occasionally, there were clearly new laws.
SPAIN and IBERIAN PENINSULA AD 650, The Gothic Years
This is especially likely in Gothic Spain, the strong region of Christianity, where, for example, King Kindasvinth in 650 issued an edict against the "execrable moral depravity" and ordered that both partners in a homosexual act either repent or be excommunicated and castrated.
It was a very practical law, treating the convicted homosexual as legally dead, and allowing a wife, if any, to remarry, and sons, if any, to receive his property. King Egica at the 16th Council of Toledo in 693 urged further curbing, and the criminal was forced to have his hair shorn and to receive 100 stripes, after which he was castrated and sent into exile.
THE GREAT CHRISTIAN EMPEROR: CHARLEMANGE!
CHRISTIAN EUROPE, AD 700 - 1,000, Emperors Charlemagne & Alfred the Great,
In due course homosexuality became a civil crime throughout Christianized Europe, a phenomenon aided greatly in the eighth century when the Emperor Charlemagne condemned "sodomy"
Alfred the Great, under pressure from the Church, condemned the "disgusting foulness . . . as contagious as any disease."
This was the prevailing attitude and understanding throughout the Middle-Ages
CHRISTIAN EUROPE, AD 700 - 1,000, The Nations
The Christian Laws against homosexuality during this period was also invoked throughout the puritanical Celtic Churches of Ireland and Wales, then spreading their influence to England, France and Germany from about 569 to 1008 — seem to know what they are talking about, and clearly specify the previously ambiguous "sins" of Sodom.
The basic penance consists of exclusion from the sacraments, self-mortification (though younger boys were beaten with rods at the hands of older clerics), fasting on bread and water on holy days (which included most days), and general discomfort. The major difference between the penances was the amount of time they were required.
The Penitential of Theodore the Archbishop of Canterbury in 670 required 1 year for homosexual touching, undifferentiated; 7 to 15 years for anal intercourse; 7 to 22 years for fellatio; and, for comparison, 7 to 10 years for murder; 15 years for infanticide (reduced to 7 years if the mother was a pauper).
The real indication that this attitude was effective in suppression homosexuality is the fact that joyful expressions of gay love became increasingly rare in medieval poetry while at the same time anti-gay satire increased. Most of the friendship in literature demonstrates that the clergy followed Augustine's advice and attempted to repress their emotions in favour of "spiritual love."
CHRISTIAN EUROPE, AD 960: Church Law becomes Civil Law
In 960 St Dunstan, Archbishop of Canterbury, began a moral reform of the Church and society, and under his influence Church Law became the core of civil law, and "penances" were enforced as punitive sentences through the law courts.
CHRISTIAN EUROPE, AD 1051: Church takes a Stronger Stand:
The Penitential tradition itself came to a head in 1051 when Peter Damiani published his Liber Gomorrhianus (derived from the city of Gomorrah), an entire book devoted to condemning homosexuality in the most horrifying rhetoric imaginable, urging the maximum penance for every homosexual activity.
His exposure of "rampant vice" among the clergy raised a storm of protest, and his intemperate zeal was rebuked by Pope Leo IX. Leo questioned only the severity of the penances, not the anti-gay attitude itself, so his epistle codified the Church's Laws against homosexuality rather than challenged it.
So it was through much of the movements preceding the reformation and the reformation itself.
KING JAMES of ENGLAND: FIRST OPENLY HOMOSEXUAL KING!
UNITED KINGDOM, AD 1600-1622: First openly Bi-sexual claiming to be Christian was King James of KJV Bible Fame.
King James was life-long homosexual, murderer of his political opponents, great persecutor of Bible Christians - which is the wicked and vile King the Pilgrims fled from when coming to the New World - a vile King who burned preachers at the stake, two Baptist Ministers being burned to death in the year of the KJV Bible translation: 1611.
However, from that time, the Christian Church has slowly lost its will to punish this sin, or practice Church discipline at all. The Salem Witch trials by the Pilgrims in the USA was about the last attempt.
Since that time, the church has given up all responsibility for the sins of society to a secular government, which the church proper busies itself to social causes, getting food, clothes and medicine to the poor.
With our “tolerance” of all manner of sin, this vile contagious disease among them - as Alfred the Great called it, has continued to spread, until now it has become "popular" to defend perversion and abomination while criticizing God Himself!
Until the Modern Church Repents and does the works of the First Christians - in confronting homosexuality personally in family and neighbors, leaders and their laws - and forgets trying to convince judges and legislators to “make it go away by passing laws against it (such as the movements of Janet Folger, Phyllis Schlafly, Moral Majority and Christian Coalition; They are DOOMED to fail.
CHRIST'S BIRTH to CHRIST'S RETURN: True Christianity is CONFRONTING CHRISTIANITY!
True Christianity is CONFRONTING CHRISTIANITY: from sin to soul winning and salvation, to finances of wealthy ministers to accountability of fellow Christians:
To the sinner Christ says:
> > REPENT or PERISH!
To the Believer Christ says:
> > CONFRONT or PERISH!