« When (And Why) The Conservative Rabbis Blinked | Main | Science Proves Homosexuality Biologically Based – Can Being Gay Or Lesbian Still Be A Sin? »

June 17, 2008


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

The Doctor

I think they are evil in their intention they have some agenda with the human race, they are a conciousness of somekind a "Mental" breed to get many numbers as they possibly can, for what? to sin against god's will? that is just it! therefore there is a god of rightousness and those want to be bigger than his power, I see this is the case, the gays are the great delusion facing the human race, i see the world is getting sicker with pervesion, this is a consent to sin against the body, this is one of satan's tricks to kill life on earth.

A reader

Is he referring to gays prior to the Shoah? Or is he acknowledging the lack of action taken by the rabbis in lands of safety to save Jews of Europe during the Shoah? There certainly was a lack of protest. All the efforts combined paled in comparison to the later Jewish participation in the black civil rights movement. And this later movement showed what really could have been achieved during the Shoah if Jews put as much heart and soul into it as they did the later movement. Is this Rabbi acknowledging this?

Yochanan Lavie

Thanks for the answer, AB.

Archie Bunker

Steve, the Geonim obviously have a point when they say other things are worse. I believe their position is brought down in one of the meforshim in Mikraos Gedolos on the Aseres Hadibros.

"Do the rabbis poskin based on the Zohar?"

The Talmud takes the driver's seat in psak. There are some Zohar influences when not in contradiction of the Talmud.

Isaac Balbin

It is not against the law for a Jew to practice idolatry (no, I'm not making a direct comparison). There would be such people in Jerusalem, as their would be in Haifa. To say that idolators having an idol (sic) parade in Jerusalem is simply an expression of their right by law to identify with their personal deity is as disingenuous as not recognising that a gay (sic) parade is maximally provocative in the holiest city in the world. One could argue that some/many don't intend to be provocative by including Jerusalem in such marches, but I think that argument is palpably specious. Unless someone has an IQ commensurate with the ambient temperature in Celsius, they clearly know and consciously choose to include Jerusalem despite the very strong objections of the (majority?) of Yerushalmim. Democracy gives them the right. Sensibility would suggest they choose not to exercise that right in Jerusalem.


They choose Jerusalem because that's the most provocative approach. If they were able, they'd do it in Mecca (Lehavdil) for the same reasons.

They have gay pride parades in Tel Aviv almost every year.

The issue is not about being provocative. The issue is allowing CITIZENS of Israel who actually LIVE IN JERUSALEM to express their identity in public.

Homosexuality is not against the law in Israel. Therefore, having a gay pride parade is also not against the law. That means we need to allow that parade, just as we need to allow mass haredi prayer rallies and Likud rallies.

Isaac Balbin

Uncle Joe McCarthy said: "not sure why they want a gay parade there"

They want it there for the same reason they want to march. This is an exercise in advertising one's sexual preferences. It's about being "in your face". They choose Jerusalem because that's the most provocative approach. If they were able, they'd do it in Mecca (Lehavdil) for the same reasons.

Yochanan Lavie

Uncle Joe: I agree that J'lem is not an appropriate venue for parades of any kind.

Archie: Do the rabbis poskin based on the Zohar? Just curious.

uncle joe mccarthy


i dont think they should have any parades in yerushalim...any

not sure why they want a gay parade there...better to have it in tel aviv...im sure it could go off without a hitch


Sternbuch seems to miss the sad irony of the Nazis having killed Jews and Homosexuals side by side while the Zionists negotiated with Nazis and saved such Orthodox luminaries as the Satmar Rebbe.

It’s odd that the Orthodox masses give ignorant people such as Sternbuch a soapbox.



Sex with an eishes ish is more severe. Both parties get chenek, not to mention karres. It's a better comparison to homosexuality because they both incur the death penalty. Case closed.

Archie Bunker

Even one casual sin with a goya still amounts to kofer beikkur and Avraham Avinu will not stop him from being cast into Hell because he defiled his bris. The punishments mentioned in the Zohar that sound worse than even kaf hakela also apply. Malkus is kid's play next to all that.


That is only if he designates her as his zonah. If one "marries" a goya, he gets malkus. If one has casual sexual relations with a goya he gets "makkas mardus"(rabbinical lashes). Read and learn:

א ישראל שבעל גויה משאר האומות, דרך אישות, או ישראלית שנבעלה לגוי, דרך אישות--הרי אלו לוקין מן התורה, שנאמר "לא תתחתן, בם" (דברים ז,ג): אחד שבעה עממין, ואחד כל האומות באיסור זה. וכן מפורש על ידי עזרא "ואשר לא ניתן בנותינו, לעמי הארץ; ואת בנותיהם, לא ניקח לבנינו" (נחמיה י,לא). [ב] ולא אסרה תורה, אלא דרך חתנות.

ב אבל הבא על הגויה דרך זנות--מכין אותו מכת מרדות מדברי סופרים, גזירה שמא יבוא להתחתן. ואם ייחדה לו בזנות--חייב עליה משום נידה, ומשום שפחה, ומשום גויה, ומשום זונה; ואם לא ייחדה לו אלא נקרית נקרה, אינו חייב אלא משום גויה. וכל חיובין אלו מדבריהן.

Archie Bunker

The Rambam derives that the Torah creates a nidah prohibition out of nowhere just to punish he who sins with a goya. This is seemingly because this sin not only defiles the bris mila but is also tantamount to blasphemy. The above comes from the Talmud. The Zohar gets into other severe punishments that await the sinner.


I did not get into the issue of a non-Jew. I was merely stating that adultery, beastiality and homosexuality are in the same league as far as the death penalty. Regarding sex with a non-Jew, kanaim applies only to one who does it publicly. Regarding karess, please state your source. AFAIK the issur is a lav that bears the punishment of malkus only.

Archie Bunker

Steve, there is also a death penalty for a non-Jew of kanaim pogim bam as well as karess. I think the main point of the Geonim though is as far as the onesh bidei shamayim. There is also yehurag vaal yaavor for sex with a gentile woman. Some poskim hold it even extends to simple touching.

The bottom line is that adultery is not worse.



I was comparing them in severity based on the level of punishment brought down in the Torah. One who has relations with a non-Jew gets malkut (Lo Titchaten Bam). One who has relations with a married Jewish woman gets the death penalty, which are the same penalties for male homosexual sex and beastiality. It has nothing to do with future potential to legalize the relationship. We can only judge the action as it presently and therefore adultery is worse than sex with a non-Jew. The promiscuous relationships listed in the Torah that are punishable by death or kares are the gilui arayos sins that fall under the category of "yehareg v'al yaavor", one should give his life before transgressing.

Archie Bunker

Steve, it is not true that adultery is as bad as homosexual sins. The Geonim learn there is a scale according to what it takes to make the sexual partner permitted to you. Sex with a non-Jewish woman is worse than adultery because it is easier for the adulteress to get divorced and remarried than it is for a non-Jew to convert to Judaism. Homo sex and bestiality are the worst because the gender / species can never transform to the opposite sex.

Yochanan Lavie

I know Gays who are believing Jews and Christians. Furthermore, most Israelis are not atheists or agnostics (neither are most Americans). Israel remains one of the most believing countries in the Western world, even if most Israelis are not halachically observant. Survey after survey shows that "secular" Israelis believe and observe more than truly secular American Jews. People usually have a positive feeling towards religion unless it is shoved down their throat.

Also, the torah does not say "Thou shalt not masturbate." The rabbis (like the church fathers) extrapolate that from the biblical story of Er and Onan. When you read the text carefully, the sin of Onan was not wanking off, but practising coitus interruptus (a crude form of birth control) because he didn't want to continue the covenant.

The rabbis should make the torah more liveable, not more oppressive.


The issue is that in Jerusalem as in the rest of Israel there are people who completely reject religious tradition and morals. Rabbi Shlomo Zalman Auerbach was mistaken in believing that people do not nowadays know how to rebuke. The problem is for a rebuke to be effective, the one rebuked must be made to feel guilt that he has done something wrong. Many people nowadays do not respect the Torah or traditional sexual values. Many people are now agnostic or atheist. These people see the Judaism as just another primitive cult superstition. They therefore do not judge an action to be wrong just because it is biblically prohibited.

For them the Torahs condemnation of homosexuality makes as much sense as the laws of sabbath or kashrus. In their eyes it is oppressive to condemn homosexuality just as it is to condemn sex before marriage or masturbation and accordingly it is those who seek to condemn homosexuality who are worthy of rebuke just as those who supported the Numemberg Laws (which forbade sex between Jews and Germans, something that R Sternbuch would have supported) are worthy of rebuke. The rebuked have now become the rebukers. The gay pride parade is meant as a rebuke by homosexuals and their supporters of those who condemn them as deviant. Rabbis Batzri and Sternbuch seem to suggest that the proper reaction to this rebuke should be violent. The State of Israel must not however allow such a violent reaction to the homosexual's rebuke.

Yochanan Lavie

Uncle Joe:

I share your sentiments about good old Sulu. May he live long and prosper! (I am a huge Sci Fi fan, especially Trek).

Don't feel about being inconsistent. It is part of the human condition. As Michel Montaigne writes (of Jewish descent, BTW): "We fluctuate betwixt various inclinations; we will nothing freely, nothing absolutely, nothing constantly."

Or Emerson: "A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of small minds."

Or Whitman: "Do I contradict myself? Very well then, I contract myself! I am large, I contain multitudes."

When a lesbian friend of mine got married, I went to the ceremony and even said a bracha, even though I am ideologically against non-halachic innovations such as Gay marriage in a synagogue. For me, friendship sometimes trumps doing the correct thing. It won't be the first time I was hypocritical. I hope God will understand, but maybe He won't; I took the chance. Maybe I will burn in hell, next to you.

Isaac B. has a good point. Sometimes we must restrain ourselves from our urges. I have the urge to impregnate multiple females, but I can't afford the child support, for example ;)

But I think homosexuality has its biological basis. Gay men just need to refrain from forbidden anal sex. It doesn't mean they can't love each other, or share a life together, in my opinion.

Isaac Balbin

uncle joe mccarthy wrote:
"having a parade is not flaunting homosexuality...one can only flaunt it if you do it in public"

Surely you jest? If it is not ostentatious [in the holiest city in the world] then why have a parade at all? You called it pritzus yourself. I'm not sure how a public demonstration of pritzus doesn't classify as a case of flaunting, when the topic is one's sexuality.

"Concerned" wrote that the homosexual inclination is now considered biological and "theology driven" arguments are "nonsense". Well, the Rambam wrote about people with certain proclivities that would lead to sin. He didn't talk about any science allegedly responsible for those proclivities. I don't think acts becomes permitted by the Torah if the source of desire or proclivity is genetic, biological, sociological or a combination of the three etc. The Rambam clearly doesn't consider proclivity an Ones.


Researchers using brain scans have found new evidence that biology—and not environment—is at the core of sexual orientation - see full article in the Scientific American site on http://www.sciam.com/article.cfm?id=study-says-brains-of-gay&sc=rss. All theology driven opinions are obviously nonsense.


oh, and congratulations to george takei on his nuptuals today...as a trek fan, i couldnt be happier for him. guess im gonna burn in hell.

George Takei got married today?

Ohhhhhhhhh myyyyyyy!

Probably safe to assume that William Shatner wasn't invited.

uncle joe mccarthy

having a parade is not flaunting homosexuality...one can only flaunt it if you do it in public...you dont want to watch a parade of pritzus, dont watch...but its no worse than any other parade where people dress up and act nuts.

and im sorry, but using this tact does not bring people to tshuva. all it does is make them more steadfast in their ways.

oh, and congratulations to george takei on his nuptuals today...as a trek fan, i couldnt be happier for him. guess im gonna burn in hell.


I think you'll find that the Rabbi is referring to the Parade and the flaunting of homosexuality, rather than generally pointing at a gay person. You need to be honest here - as a frum Jew you know that homosexuality is forbidden. If someone needs or wants to practise it, that is between them and G-d. However, when people publicly take to the streets of jerusalem, Ir HaKodesh, then the Rabbi gets upset and makes these statements.
No Parade = no rabbinical tyrades. Gays are free to be gay, but rabbis are also free (and obligated) to be rabbis.

Yochanan Lavie

Mordecai: Some women marry "hairy stinky a-holes," too. (LOL).

The way I understand it, is that anal sex between men is prohibited, not the orientation. There are forms of hetereo sex that are also prohibited, so Gays just need to refrain from that act.

We haven't done the death penalty for over 2000 years, and even when it was in force, it was rare.

I agree that an over-emphasis on homosexuality is inappropriate. I have always wondered why it is emphasized so much.


I never fully understood whether being gay was genetic or environmental. Years ago a friend opined. He said that it must be genetic because it would not be possible for one man to find sexually attractive the stinky and hairy asshole of another man. Though he put this in a rather blunt way, I have come to agree with the genetic view.

Considering the genetic predispositon to homosexuality I can neither hate nor condemn these people for being what they are hard-wired to be.

The Torah says a lot of things. Fro example Deuteronomy commands us to kill our disobedient sons. I wonder if this has ever happened even once in our long history. I dont think so. Let's not pick and choose from Torah what we want to condemn.


Child Molesters & abusers are usually gay, so they are even worse than someone who is only gay but doesn't molest.

That is not true.

Child molesters are predominantly heterosexual.


i have not read this post or any of the comments because it's just way to ridicules and a ways of time.


Child Molesters & abusers are usually gay, so they are even worse than someone who is only gay but doesn't molest.

Yochanan Lavie

Something for Carol Ann and W.D.I.E.B. to contemplate: Are Blondes going extinct?



Eating shellfish is also an abomination for Jews. There are more shellfish-eating Jews than there are homosexual Jews.

Again, a man does not incur the death penalty for eating shellfish. A man does incur the death penalty for having sex with another man. It's as bad as having relations with an animal or a married Jewish woman that's not his wife. Please stop these silly comparisons. The issue here is not the severity of the sin of homosexuality. At issue is the public display and flaunting of it in Jerusalem, our holy city. It is a direct attack against Hashem and the Torah, similar to the Syrian-Greeks sacrificing a pig on the temple altar. I consider it reprehensible in any city or country, and its inherent sleaziness has nothing to do with religion.

Carol Ann Varley

Dark-haired women can dye their hair blond!
The human race will be preserved!

I'm glad you bothered to post a message--it put a smile on my face.


The purpose of such a parade is for these people to state publicly "I am a man who has sex with other men and I'm proud of it." To me this is flaunting one's sexual habits which should be left in the closet, whatever those habits may be. These underlying sexual implications should not be on public display, just like public nudity, sex shops, and prostitutes on the corner. It's disgusting and morally reprehensible. I would have the same problem with swingers parading or other hedonists. Sexuality is a private matter and should not be on public display. It is offensive and a threat to a civilized society, not to mention the issue of exposing children to such filth.

Why do I even bother?

Gay activity is much worse than hetero sins because it is an abomination and unnatural.

Eating shellfish is also an abomination for Jews. There are more shellfish-eating Jews than there are homosexual Jews.

The human race would expire if everyone were gay.

Yes, but everyone isn't gay, so it's irrelevant. The human race would not fare so well if everyone decided to become a baseball player, or farmer, or physician either.

Some people are born depressives or bi-polar, or dsylexic, etc. The world would be a mess if everyone were one of these things. But, some are, most are not. Humanity compensates. Do you advocate destroying the depressives and bi-polars because if everyone were like that humanity would collapse into mania and suicide?

Some guys are only attracted to blondes. If that were the case for all men, humanity would die out. First, blondes are in the minority. Second, blonde is a recessive gene. So, all those dark haired guys mating with blonde women would eventually wipe out blondeness (or make it an extremely rare occurence) . . . which would leave no women for men to mate with, since there would only be dark-haired women and the men are only attracted to blondes. Thus, no more humans.

If the whole human race were straight, who would design clothes, decorate houses, create musicals, become professional dancers and football players, etc.? Yes, those are stereotypes, but just like there are a lot of Jews in law and medicine, there are a lot of gays in those fields.

The Bible says that homosexuality (at least the male variant) is a sin. Fine.

It also says that lying, stealing, murder, etc. are sins . . . and those are the sins that most concern me. Two guys going at it down the street from me does nothing to me. Someone deceiving me, stealing from me, or trying to kill me most definitely does.


No one has ever denied hareidim the right to peaceful protest this parade. The problem is that they are by nature intolerant and accordingly will always associate protest with violence and intimidation. The zeal which R Batzri called for and the protest which R Sternbuch call for should be understood as calls to violently prevent the parade rather then vigorously but peacefully protest the parade.

The secular understanding of the law's function is to preserve public order and public decency. It is not the function of the law to intervene in the private life of citizens. That is why adultery, fornication, prostitution, inter-racial sex and homosexuality are not subject to criminal sanction when carried out in private. Israel is a secular democracy and should act according to that understanding.

The homosexuals who take part in these parades are not engaging in any act of public lewdness in that (with the exception of a small minority of troublemakers) they do engage in any public sexual activity. They just wish to put forward their view that homosexuality is nothing to be ashamed of and is as 'valid' a lifestyle as any other. I personally do not accept this argument however I accept the right of homosexuals to put that view across in any lawful manner by way of peaceful assembly. It is not the same as walking naked through the streets in broad daylight but rather like walking through the streets wearing a tee-shirt stating 'I walk around naked in my home and I wish to do so publicly'. Wearing such a tee shirt is not being lewd or flaunting nudity but an expression of opinion.

In marching through Jerusalem, homosexuals are not 'flaunting' their homosexuality but rather they are publicly but peacefully protesting and rejecting Jewish traditional sexual mores as being in their eyes both immoral and oppressive. They have every right to do so just as the hareidim have a right to peacefully counter-protest in favor of traditional Jewish sexual mores.

What many people find offensive about R Sternbuch comments regarding the Holocaust is that the Nuremberg race laws banning sexual relationships between Jews and Aryans depended on the Nazis seeing private sexual conduct as a matter for law to control.


The good rabbi does not mean gedolim should have protested Hitler

How do you know that's not what he meant? Granted that he's anti-Zionist (as are many haredi rabbis), but does that mean that every pronouncement he makes has such undertones?

They are evil criminals that have no place with the God of Israel."

Here he was referring to the paraders, which I agree with him that they are evil. Why do they need to flaunt their deviant lifestyles? Putting religion aside for a moment, should any group, homosexual, heterosexual or bisexual, be parading through the streets in order to flaunt their sexual preferences? Must everything be out in the open? Why not allow people to parade around naked in the streets in broad daylight? Why not? Obviously because society still has some sense of decency and shame and certain things belong in private. Similarly, swingers conventions and if they ever decide to have them, swingers parades, should be equally condemned as gay parades.

As for men that have relations with other men, the Torah equates them with those that have relations with beasts and those that have relations with married women. With two witnesses and proper warning, they are given the death penalty. That is not the case with a man that pours a drink for his wife while she is a niddah. Homosexuality (not the orientation, YL, but the action) is a very serious sin, but one that can be atoned for through proper teshuva. Those that practice homosexuality privately are sinners, but are not any more evil than those that commit any other serious sin such as adultery. However, those that insist on flaunting this sinful behavior publicly are mechalelei shem shamayim and are pure evil.

formely frum

Isa said

"Far better for a Gay person to be openly Gay than be married and diddle with his son or his son's friends, or come back and infect the poor wife with HIV and other goodies."

This is wrong, evidence had proved over and over that gays are no more likely to abuse children that heterosexual. In addition, when a man abuses a young boy it is not a homosexual act.

However, common sense does prove that a community that hides and protects child molesters will only increase the incidences since the molesters know there is no consequences.


Far better for a Gay person to be openly Gay than be married and diddle with his son or his son's friends, or come back and infect the poor wife with HIV and other goodies.

Isaac Balbin

He is absolutely correct that, in general, a religious Jew should protest. The method used to protest though is critical. When Reb Shlomo Zalman Auerbach was asked why he didn't protest with the "yellers" who screamed "Shabbes ..." and more ... at those who drove through, he replied that he had protested but there was no need to yell or hurl stones. He felt it didn't serve a halachic purpose because people don't know how to properly rebuke anymore. A silent demonstration against marches that are designed to give strength and promote those who are tempted to stray from serious Torah injunctions is potentially more effective.

I can't compute the Holocaust reasoning. It defies my comprehension. I find it distasteful, to put it mildly.

formely frum

"I asked my rabbi: How were so many righteous men murdered during the Holocaust – because they did not protest," Sternbuch called down from the balcony on which he stood. "Whoever does not protest is confessing with silence."

Does Sternbuch believe that when the frum people realized that they where about to be murdered by the Germans, The first think that entered their mind was "I should have protested the Zionist" or, did most die as sinners and did not do theusva.
Or, the reason so many did not protest fight against the Germans, was that they knew it was god doing the punishment, for their lack of zeal against Zionism.

Sternbuch has answered the question some have, as to why so many went to their death in silence.

Sternbuch, is an idiot. In addition, in the rabbis would have any guts, they would say so and put him in chareim, so he cannot be heard from again.

Archie Bunker

Gay activity is much worse than hetero sins because it is an abomination and unnatural. The human race would expire if everyone were gay.

While Rabbi Sternbuch should have criticized molesters on equal footing since abusing children is tantamount to murder, it's sickening how Shmarya tries to act like some kind of paragon of virtue and defends the immoral homos.

I am not a follower of the Baal Shem Tov but he seems to have hit the nail on the head in predicting that the generation of the Flood would be reincarnated before the arrival of the Messiah. A generation that was overrun with perverted homos and their twisted supporters like Shmarya.


Sinas chinam and motzi shem rah kills others spiritually and literally. The ugly heart expresses itself in words.
Remember when you point one finger at another ..three are pointing back at you...This Rav brings to our door step both outrage and sadness. Chilling fact is he is true believer and the self righteous really believe they are the keepers of the faith.
i cannot shake the feeling that beis vaad harabbonim has indeed become vaad haznus.

he worries and laments silence...guess what ? we are no longer silent...we grew up nourished by the great waters of our Holy Torah. We- not him know bichol nesivosecha shalom. We not him are humbled by that knowledge. Can't have shalom if there is no opposition .
He seeks rupture. We seek a living life of shlaimut for all our people.
Tikva as we know is way more than a concept. Bring hope and peace where you go and with all you meet...a little light dispells much darkness and we no longer are fools


Let's get this straight, shall we? There is ONE halachic prohibition against men lying with men. There are MANY prohibitions dealing with sexual relations between heterosexual couples. They are all equal prohibitions.

Do these rabbis storm the streets and protest against a woman pouring wine for her husband while she is niddah?

They are on the same level.

It seems to me that hatred of another Jew and speaking evil about another is a much more serious breach of halacha than issues involving sex.

Yochanan Lavie

House in Order: Another rabbi (I forgot who) said that if no penetration takes place, there is no abuse(!) The chareidi rabbinate bashes Gays, who only consort with other consenting men, but gives a free pass (no pun intended) to rabbis who fondle little boys. I don't get it.

Halacha is about behavior, not orientation. If someone is Gay, but refrains from anal sex, he is not a sinner. (Lesbianism is not mentioned directly in the torah; the rabbis interpolate it). Similarly, if someone has a strong urge to go to the mall on Shabbat, but doesn't, he is not mechallal shabbat.

As for theodicy, it is best to leave the Shoah alone. "Hanistarot l'YHWH..."


Check out this blog for more info on R. Sternbuch's position on Zxionism


Bernie Sumner

Check out my blog for the R. Sternbuch's opinions about Zionism:


House in Order

Rabbi Moshe Sternbuch: Gays "Evil Criminals That Have No Place With The God Of Israel,"

What about child molesters? what about child abusers? Where does r. Sternbuch place them on the criminal scale - below or above gays? It seems rather apparent that very few, if any, members of the observant community have taken part as pro-gay marchers (or gay marchers) in the Jerusalem gay parades - but that there have been (and still remain) quite a few child molesters and child abusers running about in the said community.

Sternbuch needs to get the priorities straight . . . unless he really thinks that G-d gets steamed up over gays (and perhaps he does) but thinks child abusers and molesters are okay, no big deal.

The comments to this entry are closed.

Failed messiah was established and run in 2004 by Mr. Shmarya (Scott)Rosenberg. The site was acquired by Diversified Holdings, Feb 2016.
We thank Mr. Rosenberg for his efforts on behalf of the Jewish Community


Comment Rules

  1. No anonymous comments.
  2. Use only one name or alias and stick with that.
  3. Do not use anyone else's name or alias.
  4. Do not sockpuppet.
  5. Try to argue using facts and logic.
  6. Do not lie.
  7. No name-calling, please.
  8. Do not post entire articles or long article excerpts.
***Violation of these rules may lead to the violator's comments being edited or his future comments being banned.***

Search this site with Google:


FailedMessiah.com in the Media