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Thread by @crazypastor: "“IT’S ADAM AND EVE, NOT ADAM AND STEVE!!" This hateful anti-gay rhetoric is shouted in (1993), starring those giants in their […]" #Philadelphia #onhere

, 23 tweets, 5 min read
“IT’S ADAM AND EVE, NOT ADAM AND STEVE!!"

This hateful anti-gay rhetoric is shouted in #Philadelphia (1993), starring those giants in their field, Tom Hanks and Denzel Washington.

I saw it in the theaters when I was 10. I’ll never forget that line.
Of course, similar rhetoric, cleverly rhymed or not, remains today in anti-LGBTQ+ Christian hit pieces.

It comes down to Genesis, they often say. Adam and Eve, man and woman. That’s how it was meant to be.
They normally don’t go much farther than that. Biblical literalists rarely do.

If they wanted to take the first story of creation, from Genesis 1, there are no names in it at all.
Just that stunning line, “God said, ‘Let us create humanity in our image, in our likeness.’”

Female and male, God created them. So, LITERALLY, God looks like both. Or neither. Or a conglomeration. Or God is a hermaphrodite.
But lets get to Adam. In the original Hebrew (yes, again, the Bible wasn’t written in King James English), “adam” is uncapitalized, a word meaning “human.”
(I can’t get anywhere on my computer or phone without it stubbornly wanting to capitalize “adam” ughhhhhh but anyways.)
The poetry is thoroughly lost in the English.

In Hebrew, adam is created from adamah — earth, dirt, ground.
From the earth comes the earthling; a human is raised up from the hummus. The language itself ties us to the ground from which we come.
Then I read from our brilliant Jewish cousins — I am no Hebrew scholar, obviously — and @TheRaDR linked #onhere to a fantastic, stunning concept: “rib” is also used as “side.”

sefaria.org/Bereishit_Rabb…
“When the Holy One created Adam, [G-d] created [Adam] as an androgynous person.”

— Rabbi Yirmyah ben Elazar
One human in that garden, and the Holy One says, “It’s not good for the human (adam) to be alone.”

So another human is created. From the side of the first human. Flesh from my flesh. What a breathtaking moment.
When it comes to the transgender community, and their clarion call for justice beginning with preferred pronouns, this whole “male-female” dichotomy is also used by Genesis literalists.
So taking the wisdom of the rabbis, I am gently removing the male and female pronouns from the second creation story. There are simply two human beings in this tale.
For Christian literalists, especially, I’ve always been amazed that they hold so strongly to “male and female God created them” when Paul argues that, in Christ Jesus, “male and female” is completely moot.
So I’m telling Genesis 2 — stitching it together with the human creation from Genesis 1 and Paul’s point in the Letter to the Galatians — while I play @theohhellos’ stunning “Like the Dawn” in the background.
@theohhellos Here are a few of my translations, for your consideration (from Genesis 2; I don’t have the verse numbers b/c I learn to tell bible stories by getting rid of those annoying [later] additions):
@theohhellos Then the Holy One said, “It’s not good that the human is alone. I will make a helper, who is perfect.”
@theohhellos So the Holy One put the human into a deep and heavy sleep, and took a rib, a side, a piece, and closed up flesh over it. With this side from the human, the Holy One fashioned…another human, and brought the two together.
@theohhellos The human said, “This one, finally, is bone from my bones; flesh from my flesh.”

The two of them were naked, the two humans, but they weren’t embarrassed.
@theohhellos “This one, finally.”

What a gorgeous interpretation of what it means to be human. To have named the rest of living beings in creation, but still feeling alone.

Then finding another human.

A sigh, a murmur. This one, finally.
The two creation stories in Genesis are often hijacked by biblical literalists to say that LGB people are against God’s will, or that transgender people are outside God’s creation.

That’s not only wrong; it’s simply not biblical.
When you tell the story without pronouns (or using “they/them” as I do sometimes), I argue that the creation narrative gets freed from its binary shackles.
Humans aren’t meant to be alone (and I often choose solitude and have run away from intimate relationships) — “this one, finally,” reminding us that community is everything.
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