Would Jesus Hate the Transgender Movement?

"Woe to you" -- Matthew 23:13

By Tom Gilson Published on June 15, 2023

Someone asked Matt Walsh a question on Twitter last month: “Do you think Jesus would treat the trans movement with the same amount of hate that you do?” Walsh didn’t flinch. He’s a conservative commentator, producer of the documentary What Is a Woman? And he said yes.

It was a fair answer: The question wasn’t about transgender persons, whom Jesus loves as much as He loves anyone, but about the transgender movement, an ideology in action. His answer set off a storm, I stuck my nose in the discussion, and I got an earful. That’s okay: I’m used to it, and I’ve studied and published on Jesus’ own principles for dealing with people who just want to fight. I’ll write more on that soon.

One very demanding Twitter user insisted I “show .. in red words” where Jesus “hates trans people.” (That’s not what Walsh claimed, but what can you do?) This Twitter user wanted a direct quote. “Seems like if it was a dealbreaker he would have at least mentioned it once somewhere.”

It wasn’t my first clue he didn’t know what he was talking about, but it was a good one. It’s like saying we shouldn’t say Jesus would have a problem with insider trading, chemical dumping, or unleashing computer viruses, since you can’t find those words in red letters, either.

Obviously, Jesus didn’t specify every possible sin. Except it may not be so obvious if you’re an ideologue grasping at every possible straw to drag Jesus alongside you in your sin.

The real Jesus was implacably opposed to such detailed, sin-listing religion. We call it legalism, and it’s Christianity’s oldest heresy. It isn’t that sin lists are wrong. It’s that Jesus wants us focusing on principles and relationships of life, not lists of details of death.

Gnostic Heresy Revived

That’s one heresy in play already, but the one that really connects to transgenderism is the next oldest one. Called Gnosticism, it came with variations, but they shared the belief that mind and spirit were all that really counted. Physical reality was either inherently, irredeemably bad or else irrelevant. I saw a show once where a female religious leader was having sex with multiple men. She justified it by saying her religion was “spiritual,” so what she did with her body didn’t matter. That’s Gnosticism revived.

Transgenderism says the body doesn’t matter, either: Your gender is all inside, in your mind and your soul or your spirit. But this is old heresy, not biblical belief.

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Christianity is a very physical religion. Judaism is, too, since it springs from the same roots. God created a physical universe. He put physical people in physical bodies to do physical work tending the Garden. They fell into sin by eating the physical fruit of a physical tree. The nation of Israel was connected to a physical land after a physical exodus, with a physical Passover involving physical blood on physical doorposts, and eating physical food, and a physical deliverance.

Jesus was born in a physical body, lived and walked in it and did physical miracles until He died for us physically. He was raised from death in a physical body — changed, but still one in which He could enjoy fish for breakfast. When He left again after 40 days, it wasn’t by fading into physical non-existence: He physically ascended until a cloud obscured Him from His disciples’ sight.

Physical Sex Is Biblical Reality

That’s not to say Christianity is only physical. Far from it! We worship God with “heart, soul, mind, and strength,” or as Jesus said to the Samaritan woman, “in spirit and in truth.” But there is no such thing as a “spiritual” truth that contradicts a “physical” truth, and none the other way around, either. That’s why James could say there is no faith without (physical) works.

A person’s sex is physical reality, not something to override by some mentally re-arranging that reality. Abigail Favale’s treatment on this in The Genesis of Gender is superb. One example:

Genesis 2 emphasizes another vital principle: the body reveals the person. Our bodies are the visible reality through which we manifest our hidden, inner life. … This sacramentality is displayed in the man’s immediate recognition of the woman. They have not yet spoken, she has not verbally introduced herself. Her body speaks the truth of her identify, and this truth is immediately recognized by the man.

I could say more, but I recommend you read Favale’s book instead. You won’t find proof in proof texts, and that’s okay. This isn’t about some statement Jesus might have made in passing. It’s about the entire shape of reality, from Genesis 1 to the delicious fruit and healing leaves growing on the trees in Revelation 22. Biblical religion is spiritual, mental, relational, and very much physical. All of these. Transgenderism denies one of these, the physical, where none of them is ours to deny.

Even worse, though, is the way in which transgenderism denies God’s creation.

Transgenderism’s Evil God-Move

Rose Montoya, the full-fake-breasted man who bared his chest at the White House last weekend, demonstrates it clearly. He tried to justify himself, saying, “I wanted to be fully free in myself. I had zero intention of trying to be vulgar or be profane in any way. I was simply living in joy, living my truth and existing in my body. Happy Pride, free the nipple.”

You won’t find proof in proof texts, and that’s okay. This isn’t about some statement Jesus might have made in passing. It’s about the entire shape of reality,

Notice the focus: “I …. myself. I . … I … my… my.” Maybe you begin to see the problem. But this is no mere self-centeredness. For Montoya to declare “my truth,” he must be god of his own universe, with no other God or gods intruding to bring any competing truth. It’s his truth, his universe. He’s the god there, so why shouldn’t he be fully free in himself?

Montoya would say, “In herself,” but I don’t live in that universe. I do have to keep a watchful eye out for his deity, though, even in my own world: He’ll reach out of his world into mine, and try to force me act as if I were living as his subject, in his own world. Trans people everywhere do that, and get astonishing support in it.

Self-Centered in the Extreme

Living “my truth” is hardly unique to transgenderism. It just takes the bad thing that it is, and carries it to extremes.

Trans people live in their own universes, “free in myself,” but we’re not allowed to live in ours. We have to ask, “Which rules from your world must I follow in mine?” It’s not enough being gods of their own worlds: They reach out and seize control in ours as well. This is yet one more thing we know Jesus would never agree with.

And it really is supremely self-centered after all. Rose Montoya has “zero intention of trying to be vulgar or profane in any way.” Hah! He knew exactly what he was doing. He just had zero intention of caring what others think. And it isn’t just Montoya. Lia Thomas, the swimmer, displays selfish bullying in almost perfect degree. Trans people claim to be “the oppressed,” but who’s pushing whom around here? It runs rampant in their tribe.

Would Jesus Hate Transgenderism?

Jesus never said “in red words” it’s wrong to change your sex. Instead He created a world where we’re conceived and born the sex we are. Sex isn’t “assigned.” It’s part of each person’s physical reality, the one in which God intended each of us to live. If we “identify as” anything, it should be our actual identities, given us (not “assigned!”) by the good God who loves us.

And Jesus modeled and taught love, the very opposite of transgenderism’s self-centered “my truth” or “my authentic self,” defined in their own god-pretending terms.

Back to our starting question, then. God hates evil, including idolatry, self-centeredness, and yes, oppression, all of which are core to transgenderism, but Jesus never used the words “I hate” while on earth, so I have trouble thinking He would say, “I hate transgenderism.” And He certainly wouldn’t say He hates the movement’s leaders.

Instead He would look at them with grief and horror at the doom they were teaching and preaching, just as He did the Pharisees of His day. He would do everything possible, without violating their human responsibility, to awaken them to the doom they were sending themselves to. He might go as far as calling them “brood of vipers.”

Then if still they refused to listen, He would tell them over and over again, as He told the Pharisees seven times in Matthew 23,

   “Woe to you. …

       Woe to you. …

           Woe to you. …

              Woe to you. …

                  Woe to you. …

                     Woe to you. …

                         Woe to you.”

 

Tom Gilson (@TomGilsonAuthor) is a senior editor with The Stream and the author or editor of six books, including the highly acclaimed Too Good To Be False: How Jesus’ Incomparable Character Reveals His Reality.

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