The Incorrectness of Corrective Rape
Eudy Simelane. Zoliswa Nkonyana. Salome Masooa. Sizakele Sigasa. Thokozane Qwabe. Funeka Soldaat. Duduzile Zozo. These are just a few of the many lesbians who have allegedly been raped and or murdered in townships around South Africa in attempts to ‘cure’ them of their sexual orientation.
Corrective rape is the violent act of raping a homosexual person (usually a lesbian) with the intention of converting them to heterosexuality.
“They tell me that they will kill me, they will rape me and after raping me I will become a girl. I will become a straight girl.” - Zakhe, 23, Soweto.
There are no official statistics for corrective rape in South Africa, but according to Luleki Sizwe, an organization which helps rape victims in the Western Cape, more than 10 lesbians are raped or gang-raped per week in Cape Town alone.
In this article, I will attempt to show that corrective rape is incorrect for at least two reasons. (1) It is inconsistent, (2) It is incompetent.
The Inconsistency of Corrective Rape
The apostle Paul, in the first chapter of his letter to the Romans, writes about the wrath of God being revealed against all ungodliness. He argues that God shows His wrath by giving people who suppress the truth in unrighteousness over to their sinful desires:
26 For this reason God gave them up to dishonourable passions.
For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature;
27 and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women
and were consumed with passion for one another,
men committing shameless acts with men
and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error.
If Paul had stopped writing at these verses; we might be excused for concluding that sins of a homosexual nature are the only sins that are abominable in God’s eyes, but the apostle does not give us that liberty. He continues:
28 And since they did not see fit to acknowledge God,
God gave them up to a debased mind to do what ought not to be done.
29 They were filled with all manner of unrighteousness, evil, covetousness, malice.
They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, maliciousness. They are gossips,
30 slanderers, haters of God, insolent, haughty, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents,
31 foolish, faithless, heartless, ruthless.
Paul declares that ‘all manner of unrighteousness’, not just homosexual sin, is as sign of God’s wrath being revealed.
If corrective rapists were consistent in their hatred of sin, they would be just as vehement against gossiping, faithlessness and disobedience to parents as they are against homosexual sin. I have never heard of any corrective punishment being administered to polygamists or heterosexual fornicators. Instead, those who commit such sins are praised and encouraged by the same people who condemn homosexual sins.
This is because instead of viewing sin from the consistent lens of God’s word, the corrective rapists view sin from the inconsistent lens of African Traditionalism. Instead of consistently defining sin as all that is ungodly, they inconsistently define it as all that is ‘un-African’.
The Incompetence of Corrective Rape
Not only is the practice of corrective rape inconsistent, it is also incompetent. That is, it is utterly powerless to cure its patients.
Those who attempt to correct sinful homosexual behaviour through corrective rape are attempting to accomplish what only Jesus, through the gospel, can accomplish. “… [the gospel] is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes…” – Romans 1:17
It is the violence of the cross, not the violence of corrective rape that has the power to change the hearts for homosexual and heterosexual sinners.
It is the meek strength of the dying God-man, Jesus Christ, not the masculine strength of the killing men, which can subdue sinful hearts.
These men can murder lesbians all the daylong but no amount of lesbian blood can purify anyone’s heart. Only the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without blemish to God, can purify our conscience from dead works to serve the living God.
Furthermore, through corrective rape, some of these men attempt to give sexual pleasure to lesbians, believing that upon realising what they have been missing, the lesbians will turn away from a life of homosexual attraction.
But it is only those pleasures that are found in God through Jesus, not the pleasures of heterosexual intercourse, which can ravish, satisfy and wean souls away from sinful behaviours, homosexual or otherwise. Whatever pleasures can be derived from sin are fleeting and unsatisfactory at best. Only in God is there fullness of joy and pleasures forever more.
In conclusion, allow me to reiterate that I do not believe that homosexual sinners are worse than heterosexual sinners. Scripture’s testimony is consistent. All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God! Only the gospel is powerful and competent to save all who believe; homosexuals and corrective rapists, this writer and his readers.