Claiming the Antichrist Will be Gay can Make You Look Like an Idiot
May 30th, 2009
Tim LaHaye’s popular Left Behind novels are a series of fictional tales about the lives of those in the battle of good v. evil after The Rapture takes place and Jesus calls all the saved Christians to Heaven. His archvillian, Nicolae Carpathia, is the Antichrist, the world leader who declares himself God and fights against the forces of Jesus Christ.
As an anti-gay activist and author of the homophobic screed What Everyone Should Know About Homosexuality, it’s little surprise that LaHaye makes his Antichrist the son of pernicious Satan-worshiping homosexuals.
But now a Baptist pastor in Alaska has gone LaHaye one better. Believing that “there is no greater sin against God”, he naturally jumped to the conclusion that the Anti-Christ himself will be gay.
But will the Antichrist be a homosexual? Having seen what the Bible says of sodomy, we have no further to look than the book of Daniel, chapter 11 to find our answer. It says, “Neither shall he [Antichrist] regard… the desire of women….” As I said at the onset, I am not the first to draw attention to this, but the verbiage is clear.
Ron Hamman, pastor of the Independent Baptist Church of Wasilla, has written a Religion View in his local paper, the Frontiersman. Poor Hamman, if he weren’t from Sarah Palin’s home town, no one would pay him much attention. But having set himself up for mockery, it’s only fair that I point out that Pastor Hamman is nearly biblically illiterate as well at intellectually challenged.
Many readers will just laugh or wonder why we are wasting time on this story. But I’ll give Pastor Hamman the courtesy of responding to his great announcement on his own terms. And it is on those terms that Hamman’s argument fails. Miserably.
Perhaps unknown to Hamman, “the verbiage” he’s quoting wasn’t written in English. And though it truly is clear, it doesn’t support his rather irrational assumptions.
Hamman, like many a conservative preacher, only trusts the King James Version of the Bible. So his source for the quote above is Daniel 11:37.
Neither shall he regard the God of his fathers, nor the desire of women, nor regard any god: for he shall magnify himself above all.
We’ll assume for a minute that Hamman is correct in believing that this prophesy of Daniel refers to the apocryphal character known as the Antichrist. We’ll even set aside the irony that Daniel was a eunuch and suppose that “not regarding the desire of women” could mean homosexuality.
But Hamman forgot about context. And original meaning. And the fact that this verse was written in Hebrew. Had he just taken a second to go online and check another translation, he would have realized that this had nothing to do with sexuality at all. Rather, all of what “the king” was magnifying himself above were gods. Here’s the same verse, in the context of the surrounding verses, from the New International Version.
36 “The king will do as he pleases. He will exalt and magnify himself above every god and will say unheard-of things against the God of gods. He will be successful until the time of wrath is completed, for what has been determined must take place. 37 He will show no regard for the gods of his fathers or for the one desired by women, nor will he regard any god, but will exalt himself above them all. 38 Instead of them, he will honor a god of fortresses; a god unknown to his fathers he will honor with gold and silver, with precious stones and costly gifts. 39 He will attack the mightiest fortresses with the help of a foreign god and will greatly honor those who acknowledge him. He will make them rulers over many people and will distribute the land at a price.
Alas, poor Hamman. Had he gone to Divinity School, or picked up any study reference, or discussed it with any literate Christian, he would have known that he was basing his entire claim on a misreading of a single verse taken out of context.
Now he just looks like an idiot.