Day after day, different people just come out of the blues with theories that go a long way in shaping the attitudes and actions of their followers. One fallacy that was brought to my attention some time ago was the anti-intersexual hugging and shaking of hands theory supported by a prominent church leader among others in Nigeria. This theory states that it is not only wrong to hug the opposite sex, but it also wrong for a guy to stretch out his hand to shake the opposite sex.

The Fallacy

It’s not new gist that many churches and their General Overseers (GOs) have ascribed a lot of negativity to intersexual hugging which is just wrong. At the end of the day, they are just turning most of their youths into hypocrites and jokers, and they always end up being the ones who do the worst things in the dark. That is why today, the eyes of people are now opening up and they are very careful when it comes to women who wear sacs (Mary-Amaka) and look too holy for the liking.

I was amazed when I went to a particular fellowship and in an attempt to shake a lady’s hand in greeting, she just hung my hand. I felt seriously irritated and disrespected and asked what could possibly be the logic behind that, and she said that their GO told them that it was wrong for a guy to shake a lady’s hand. If the lady wanted to shake the guy’s hand, she is the one that would first stretch out her hand, making reference to some English law or something. Then I simply asked her a question and I said “If I were to be your boss in the office, or you were to go for an interview, and the interviewer stretched out his hand to shake you before or after the interview, what would you do?” Hypocrites would always contradict themselves at the end of the day as expected, she couldn’t answer. This is already coupled with the no intersexual hugging principle that the same GO among others has incorporated into the minds of the members (especially youths).

Is it Biblically Logical?

What is their aim with all these laws? Is it supposed to prevent fornication or what? Then they must not know what their youths are doing in secret. At the end of the day, they are only making matters worse, at a time when the law of the Lord should be written in peoples’ hearts, you are busy giving them new laws, as if “thou shall not fornicate or commit adultery” has done any good. When it is already established that the strength of sin is the law (1 Corinthians 15:56), what impact do they think they are making at the end of the day? There is no place in the Bible that speaks against shaking of hands or hugging, no place! Are they now to be classified as appearances of evil (1 Thessalonians 5:22)? Four times in the New Testament, Paul says “Salute or greet one another with an holy kiss” (Romans 16:16, 1 Corinthians 16:20, 2 Corinthians 13:12, and 1 Thessalonians 5:26), we even know the greeting patterns that pertain in some parts of the world, what then makes Nigerian Christians any different? You just cook up lust in the minds of people by giving them illogical restrictions and at the end of the day, the go in secret to find out why they are being restricted to do certain things which were never classified as sin or even should have had the capacity to lead to sin, except for the lust that has already been conceived in the hearts of people through restrictions and laws, strengthening sin in their lives. That is why these sets of people are the most judgmental of all, who also have strongholds in prejudice. They end up condemning people for no just reason, turning people into puppets, hypocrites, secret sinners and monsters.

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A Practical Scenario

In 2011, I sighted a particular girl whom I had known from secondary school up till university. I had not seen her in years and so with that enthusiasm, it was a matter of reflex to hug; only for me to be greeted with a refusal, and she even refused to shake my hand. I asked the logic behind such and she said her GO told them that they should not hug the opposite sex and that also included shaking hands. That was it, I didn’t even have anything to say again, I was just shaking my head and parted ways with a “take care”. A year later, I saw this girl at my place of work, and I was already filled with that irritation that I have for the likes of her because they are just jokers. As we passed by each other, I couldn’t just walk away because we weren’t fighting, so I said hi, asked her how she had been, and told her that I would have given her a hug but she didn’t collect hugs. I was surprised by her response, she said “I said that abi, abeg that was that time”, she was the one who stretched out her hands and gave me a hug, I can’t remember whether it was full, semi or half. That’s how insignificant it is to the body or brain. The point of attraction is how under a year, she defiles the instruction of her GO which she once upheld and rebels against him, making her a hypocrite. Only God knows the adventures it would have led her to go into in fulfilment of the possible accumulated lusts as a result of the illogical and unbiblical restrictions.

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At the End of Everything

Love and emotions are also transferred by embrace and this in no way leads to lust only if it is done with a hidden agenda, which would only exist when the person has been restricted or has restricted him/herself from the act as evil which has and will never be evil. There is nothing in hugging, talk less of shaking hands, as in, come on! Shaking hands? Do you see how Satan is just playing with peoples’ minds? Of course, there are exceptions, but you dare not tell me that hugging is what fuels those exceptions to lust. In fact, when embraced in love, it has a life changing effect at the moment. You are against intersexual hugging, but unisexual hugging is now gradually classified as homosexuality, which is also because of the restrictions and laws that people are making which plays with the minds of people. Guys are told they are gay because they hold another guy’s shoulder. They now start accepting that fallacy which then fashions them into what they are not. Two best friends are walking holding hands, they are told that they are lesbians. When we were small, we showed that somebody was our best friend by walking around with the person with our arm around his shoulder, now, it is homosexuality? So are you telling me I was gay for doing that? If that is what you are telling me, then full offence, you must be mad!!! The same thing applies for intersexual relationships, it is hard for the white man to have any lusts as a result of hugging because it a thing of love, emotion and comfort through the embrace which they have been brought up with. Don’t we all have the same body parts? Don’t they feel the same body parts when they hug? What makes them any different?

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The strength of sin is the law (1 Corinthians 15:56), I was once a victim of this mind play when I was very much younger, running away from hugs and lusting in my heart until a girl finally hugged me impromptu and I understood that there was nothing there. I have come to discover that there is always a direct correlation between the heightened strength of sin and restrictions or laws against that particular sin that are mostly baseless. Don’t get me wrong, there will always be exceptions as to sexually oriented hugs, but when that is not the case, don’t manufacture what isn’t there.

Well, you can’t just go and start trying to hug every member of the opposite sex, even you will know by yourself that you are just a joker. But to express your emotions, feelings, joy and enthusiasm for seeing the opposite sex or to comfort them, don’t let anybody deceive you or restrict you; and as much as you are moved in love each time you see someone that you know and have no such restriction with, please stretch out your hands and embrace him/her, you never know if that was all he/she needed to feel loved once again.

Against hugs and handshakes, there is no law!

Cheers and God bless you infinitely!!!

Godsplan Uzoaga.

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