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Let the churches say amen to ban on LGBT ‘conversion therapy’

Leelah Alcorn Courtesy of Tumblr
trans flag

A transgender flag.

When the Obama administration announced support Wednesday (April 8) for a national ban on so-called  conversion therapy for LGBT youth, there was no mention of religion in the White House statement.

In the official White House statement, senior adviser Valerie Jarrett mentioned that the medical community finds this bogus therapy “neither medically nor ethically appropriate” and capable of causing “substantial harm.”  She cited the We the People White House petition that garnered 120,958 signatures after the suicide of trans teen Leelah Alcorn went viral earlier this year.

Yet, noticeably absent from the statement was any mention of religion.

Odd, considering the majority, if not all, groups that promote conversion therapy are religion-based.

It’s typically anti-LGBT theology that drives people to believe that LGBT people are “broken” and in need of healing. It’s this damaging theology that says that LGBT people are less than. It’s the traditional theology, in which an LGBT orientation is unfavorable, that has fueled the conversion therapy system.

“For too long same-sex attraction has been categorized as sinful and in need of repairing,” Alan Chambers, former director of the defunct Exodus International, told me in an email Thursday.

“Such stigma has caused LGBTQ people crippling shame and fear. As a child and later as an adult I both experienced and then perpetuated this stigma. I profoundly regret my support for and promotion of conversion therapy and stand with President Obama in calling for a ban on this practice for minors and greater measures to protect adults seeking this niched therapeutic intervention.”

Currently there are 18 states considering legislation to ban conversion therapy for minors. Unfortunately, on the same night that the Obama administration announced its support for a national ban, Colorado turned down legislation that would have banned the pseudo-science practice.

Even with the Obama administration support on a national ban, it’ll still take congressional action to change policy. Despite the overwhelming evidence against conversion therapy, and the countless former ex-gay spokespersons regarding coming out as LGBT, bipartisan support for a national ban will be hard to get.

Debi Jackson, founder of Trans-Parenting, and one of the petitioners who spoke to Valerie Jarrett, told me Thursday, “This isn’t a political issue or even a religious issue. Conversion therapy is barbaric and causes so much harm, especially to children and teens who legally can’t opt out of it if their parents take them.

“This is an issue of basic decency in how we treat people who were born into a minority group. Politics should be left behind and humanity should be all that is considered when moving towards banning the practice,” Jackson said.

Unfortunately, it seems the humanity of LGBT people is hardly ever considered by Christians who hold traditional understandings of Scripture. It’s traditionalists who  promote conversion therapy, who see LGBT identities as nothing more than a sex act.

They’re the same people who deny trans people the basic human right to use the restroom and who devalue their lives.

A legalistic approach to Scripture has continually been placed over the lived experiences of LGBT people.

If recognizing LGBT people’s humanity is necessary for a national ban on conversion therapy, I worry we won’t get there anytime soon.

In the White House statement, President Obama said that for us to create a safer environment for LGBT youth, it’ll take more than a national ban on conversion therapy:

“Tonight, somewhere in America, a young person, let’s say a young man, will struggle to fall to sleep, wrestling alone with a secret he’s held as long as he can remember. Soon, perhaps, he will decide it’s time to let that secret out. What happens next depends on him, his family, as well as his friends and his teachers and his community. But it also depends on us — on the kind of society we engender, the kind of future we build.”

Obama’s words are reflective of Leelah’s final plea. In her suicide note, she begged the reader to “fix society.”

It’s on us to take a stand on the humanity of LGBT people and end church-sponsored harmful practices.

We have the power to make the changes necessary. Together, we can let all LGBT youth know that they are fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14).

The Obama administration believes “that young people should be valued for who they are, no matter what they look like, where they’re from, the gender with which they identify, or who they love.”

The church response should be a resounding “amen.”


About the author

Eliel Cruz

Cruz is a contributor on religion, (bi)sexuality, media and culture at The Advocate, Mic and Religion News Service.


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  • In Matthew 19, Jesus refers to some people who were ‘born this way’, all Christians, as followers of Christ must show love and acceptance to those people.

  • To the overt sinners that Jesus healed (for we all sin and fall short of the glory of God) he said your faith has made you well and go forth and sin no more. To pretend that sin is anything other than sin because it makes people uncomfortable is to call God a liar. In 1 John 3:8 “Whoever makes a practice of sinning is of the devil, for the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the works of the devil.;”. by this we (Followers of Christ) cannot take a neutral stance on sin, which homosexual practice falls under. The Bible being the Inerrant Word of God does not hide this fact. This also means that though someone that is practicing habitual sin (weather it be worshiping false gods, idol worship, swearing falsly, violent behavor, or coveting etc.) they are not in truth following christ 1 John 1:6 “If we say that we have fellowship with Him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth;”. Pleasing God is not a matter of taking out of the Bible the parts you like and disgarding the parts you don’t, but recognizing that the parts you disagree with mean, the itinerant, perfect, eternal of the Word of God doesn’t need changing, but you do.

    All that being said…

    Physical violence is not condoned by a follower of Christ. Even for self defense.

    Parents who raise there children by societies principals should expect to get our of their children what society has to offer and that is not what we are instructed to do by God.

    The Bible doesn’t teach compromise of beliefs or truth.

    Jesus taught us that we would be rejected by the world for his sake, for righteousness sake and that if we are to take up our cross and follow him. The world rejects him because it does not know him(intimate knowledge as in relationship, not mear awareness), it will reject us because we are no longer of the world but of him. The slave is not above his master. lest we forget John 18:21

  • Those “born that way” people that Jesus were referring to: Were they homosexuals?

    If so, why would Jesus find it necessary to cleanse and remove homosexuality from the ancient Corinthians in 1 Cor. 6:9-11? Weren’t they “born that way” likewise?

  • How about we just abandon all religious nonsense completely?

    If you don’t know what is right and decent
    you need empathy and compassion, not religion.

    “Bring to me those enemies of mine who would not have me as their King and Execute them in front of me” – JESUS (Luke 19:27)

    Morality is doing what is right no matter what you are told.
    Religion is doing what you are told no matter what is right.

    – A.M.

  • Churches who have made a name for themselves demonizing LBGT people, attacking them in the churches and in public existence and promoting discrimination against them under color of law are not interested in appeals to compassion or humanity. They certainly don’t want to give up a useful political tool to such ends.

    Those churches interested in treating people with humanity and dignity already denounce and actively oppose this form of torture. Those who don’t, want gays ostracized, tormented, and if they had the opportunity, dead.

    If you want to make an appeal to get rid of this nasty, malicious form of abuse, one is best off seeking civil solutions. Forget appeals to inhumane, nasty minded churches that want to see gays destroyed mentally or physically. Lobby politicians to ban it once and for all.

  • These were people whom Jesus said were unfit for marriage and therefore could more easily accept the disciples’ statement that it is better not to marry if divorce is off-limits in all but the most limited circumstances.

  • Should Christians show love and acceptance to people whom Jesus refers to in Matthew 19 as ‘born this way’? — The answer is absolutely, YES!!!

  • Didn’t mean to repeat that post, wanted to add love, acceptance and compassion to the original comment.

  • “The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the works of the devil.;”. by this we (Followers of Christ) cannot take a neutral stance on sin, which homosexual practice falls under. The Bible being the Inerrant Word of God does not hide this fact.” Please tell me where in the Bible this is so. And please, don’t quote Leviticus.

  • I believe parents are the lead cause of wanting conversion therapy for their gay kids. I don’t believe it works, but so many other therapies are also bogus.

    What I don’t understand is if the child wishes to undergo the therapy with his parents approval, is that not an infringement on his/her rights?

    Scientology is allowed to exist under the false pretense of religion, and the President is not calling for an end to their barbaric treatment of its members…..just saying.

  • Joseph,

    Why is it any of your business what people do with themselves?

    What superior information do you claim to have which the rest of us don’t have? How dare you stick your nose in what other people do?
    What gives you that right?

    Why don’t you leave everyone else alone? We don’t believe your god is anything more than a fairy tale.

  • Eunuchs born that way (Matthew 19), are simply people who do not feel the need to get married; they are quite happy being single, and celibate.

  • Good post Joseph. What many posters on this site seem to miss is that people of Faith, must follow Almighty God, and reject the horrible filth that our children are being subjected to. Of course if you are being taught in school that homosexuality is “normal,” then young minds tend to wander, and they will even try the forbidden things. When I grew up, if homosexuality were mentioned, immediately your guard went up. These days kids that aren’t even old enough to understand adult matters, are being shoveled this type of garbage down their throats, and even by our president! As an aside, I am beginning to wonder whether the Larry Sinclair accusations against our president might actually be true! But back to the subject, kids should be off limits. When they turn 18, then that should be an age old enough to apply a sense of reason, and by that time, they should know Truth, and be grounded in it. One thing, though, your statement on self-defense, that is a gray area in Scripture, and we should apply reason: For example, it says in Luke 12:48: “but he who did not know [his master’s will], and did what deserved a beating, shall receive a light beating”; compare that with James 4:17: “whoever knows what is right to do and fails to do it, for him it is sin.” If we were to look at this from the self defense perspective, we could say a person acted out of instinct, and did not sin, at least in a grave way.

  • James, it is called positive gay enforcement therapy; it is a new department being run by our president himself. Each session kicks off with a hypnotist quietly mesmerizing the children: “you are getting very sleepy, very sleepy… they then begin to quote Freud, and little Hans who had a phobia of horses…” and it’s all down hill from there. I think the word is “brain washing” but I might be wrong.

  • Not that there are not more places, but would I exclude the moral law to which Jesus said that not even the smallest stroke was to be removed until all, ALL, is accomplished? I suggest that instead of trying to bait me you spend the time reading it, though from the point of view that outside of what it says a man’s opinion means nothing.

  • Christ said turn the other cheek. Paul said we should suffer for him that and count it Joy and Jesus said “rejoice and be glad”. Sin is sin, for if you break one of the laws you would be under the weight of all of them. It is not greater or lesser sin that would keep you from heaven but any. In regards to whoever knows it is right…, It doesn’t say that whoever knows it is right and does it accidentally it is whoever knows it is right and fails to do it… not qualifying it means for any reason. The last thing we should do is justify our mistakes using a world based criteria. I have a hard time understanding how Jesus, who had all authority, who could have called thousands of angles to his defense, did not, in all the torture, ever fight back but instead prayed for them and asked God to forgive them…would I try to justify lesser behavior than that? If fact he commanded us to do the same thing. ‘love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.’ his example leaves no grey area and there is no example in the new testament, that is condoned(peter with the sword in the garden not being condoned), where any of the authors justify being violent in any way to anyone. There is no grey, only black or white. Grey implies an acceptable about of black… and there is none to be allowed.

    We are all sinners in need of a savior and though I profess what is true and right I do not pretend to be without sin, in the end the Lord desires Faith, Hope, Love and the greatest of these love. He does not take pleasure in sacrifice but a repentant heart.

  • Joseph,

    “Christ said turn the other cheek.”

    And he also said, “Execute them in front of me” – JESUS (Luke 19:27)

    Does it matter that this veiled threat was under the disguise of a Nobleman? Does that lesson the blow? Of course not.

    Jesus almost NEVER turned the other cheek
    and he did not want his followers to do so either:

    “tell him his fault.” – JESUS (Matthew 18:15)
    “Have nothing to do with him!” (Titus 3:9-11)
    “LET HIM BE REMOVED” (1 Corinthians 1:13)
    “In the name of Jesus..keep away from him!” (2 Thess 3:6)
    “If anyone does not…let him be cursed.” – (1 Cor. 16:22)
    “Deem them unworthy” – JESUS (Matt 10:13)

    Is this stuff moral? No.
    Is this stuff useful? No.
    Is this stuff needed? No.

    People need to awaken from this way of thinking. It just makes no sense and spreads horror.

  • Joseph,

    It certainly does not matter to me whether you care about me.

    What matters is why do you care about so many people doing harmless things: having sex without any care about gods. Isn’t that God’s problem?

    How do Christians figure they have a right to interject their opinion onto others – but won’t accept the opinions of those who reject it for what it appears to be; nonsense.

    Does it make sense that god would turn himself into his own son and have himself murdered on a cross – as his entire plan?? (Lamb of God means sacrifice).
    Why would go do that? To save mankind from a Hell he made – but the plan only works if you believe it 100% without the slightest wavering?
    And if you don’t believe the story God sends you to hell forever to be tortured?

    What sense does that make? None that I can see.
    Thus: Nonsense.
    Unless someone can explain it better it looks like a ridiculous and damaging theory.

  • Joseph,

    “not even the smallest stroke was to be removed until all, ALL, is accomplished?”

    So these laws of Moses are to remain in effect until when?
    “All is accomplished”

    Okay Joseph – All what?
    His Crucifixion? His Resurrection? The End of Times?

    “KILL homosexuals” – YAHWEH God (Leviticus 20:13)

    Aside from being blatant BIGOTRY and an INCITEMENT TO MURDER what is so virtuous about this Godly law which needs to be upheld until “all” is accomplished?

    If All was accomplished at the Resurrection, then the 10 commandments and all of the other laws of Moses are extinct. So it is okay to steal now.

    But if All will be accomplished at the End times, then you should still be stoning Gays to death.

    And if God is so perfect, why does he have to act like Microsoft operating system Windows 2 and let his old stuff get OBSOLETE?

    Religion must be questioned. These are very dangerous toys.

  • Graham:
    That Jesus came to destroy the works of the Devil: 1John 3:8
    That homosexuality is a grave sin: 1 Cor. 6:9-10, Rom. 1:26-28
    Our Lord’s definition of marriage: Matthew 19:1-12
    That the Devil will be loosed for a time before our Lord’s Return: Rev 20:7-15 (and this last one looks to be happening now!).

  • I hear you Joseph, but Jesus was clear that the Scriptures must be fulfilled: Matt 25:64. I’m not saying that Christians are to look for revenge, but in an accidental situation, or a reflex response, we must not see it as grave sin. But you are correct in the Christian way, and indeed the Early Church was slaughtered one by one by those who despised Christ … and they saw it as automatic salvation (Mark 8:35). So, good points, but there are situations that require deeper study.

  • I wonder, Greg, if a heterosexual wants to convert to gayism, would the government sponsor the therapy? I’m guessing it would. I will write to Washington.

  • I want to interrupt this line of questioning for just a moment and ask you a question, and I would be happy to try to assist you in understanding, if that is your motive, after you answer this.

    If you knew for a fact that God was real, being the Creator of all things, would you worship him?

    Before you answer consider this. It can be found in the book of Romans.

    “But who are you, O man, to answer back to God? Will what is molded say to its molder, “Why have you made me like this? Has the potter no right over the clay, to make out of the same lump one vessel for honorable use and another for dishonorable use?”

  • you have an amazing ability to leave out the context. Jesus is God. Would anyone be justified in condemning sin it would be him because it is an affront to his perfect nature. You don’t seem to be able to reference the teaching in the way it is meant to be understood to make your point, but rather twist it to suit your argument. Would that you read it with the intent to understand…. Would that could is my prayer. I love you and care for you in a way that you don’t understand because you have not known that love yourself.

  • I pose a question and perhaps this will provide an answer.

    If you never hear the Gospel are you Condemned to Hell without the opportunity to follow Christ?

  • “How do Christians figure they have a right to interject their opinion onto others – but won’t accept the opinions of those who reject it for what it appears to be; nonsense.”

    If I saw a bus coming down the street and you were ignorant of it, would that you had your ears plugged and would not open your eyes, how much would I have to hate you to let that happen without saying anything or doing anything. Unfortunately whether or not you acknowledge the bus it is still coming.

  • Joseph:
    According to Jesus, maybe, maybe not. Luke 12:40 implies that if little is given, then little shall be expected. Of course there must be a quest for Truth, at least at some level. But let’s look at what it takes to get to heaven: Righteousness: Matt 5:20, martyrdom for Christ: Mark 8:35, Receiving the kingdom as a child: Mark 10:15, being baptized with Water and the Spirit: John 3:5, receiving the body and blood (Eucharist): John 6:53-56, abiding in Christ: John 15:1-10, keeping the commandments: 1Cor 7:19, bearing fruit: Matt 3:8,10, calling upon the Name: Romans 10:13, believing and being baptized: Mark 16:16, having belief/faith: Rom 5:1, Acts 16:31, perseverance: James 1:12, good works: James 2:14-24, converting a sinner: James 5:20, the list goes on, but in the end it is through Jesus that one gets to heaven: Acts 15:11. As for Hell, only God Judges: Luke 6:37. Lastly, I don’t wish to use the OT, but certainly Exodus 22:2 implies God’s understanding of self defense (murder). I know we are in the New Covenant, but we would probably agree that the underlying moral principles of the Old Covenant are forever.

  • “If you knew for a fact that God was real, being the Creator of all things, would you worship him?”

    Do you have proof that does not require faith or reference to a book whose factual acceptance requires preexisting faith?

    Of course not. Short of the hand of God coming down from the heavens, there isn’t a damn thing you are going to be able to bring up which anyone has to take seriously?

  • I see you are already trying out excuses subsequent to being busted for picking up male prostitutes.

    “I was subjected to gay therapy!!!! I used to be straight!!!!!”

    Very creative.

  • But we are talking about Christians throwing people under said bus and saying God tells me its OK.

    Its the self-righteous excuses to act badly to people which give religion a bad name.

  • “I know we are in the New Covenant, but we would probably agree that the underlying moral principles of the Old Covenant are forever.”

    “For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved. 11For the Scripture says, “Everyone who believes in him will not be put to shame.” 12For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, bestowing his riches on all who call on him. 13For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”

    14How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard?c And how are they to hear without someone preaching? 15And how are they to preach unless they are sent? As it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!” 16But they have not all obeyed the gospel. For Isaiah says, “Lord, who has believed what he has heard from us?” 17So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ.”

    Short of a direct act of communication that God extends this makes it clear. We come in to the world condemned and only by Gods Grace are we saved, though this would explain the usual steps. Paul, who wrote this, spoke directly to Christ and believed.

    And you are right, I would not affirm that an accident in hurting someone, even mortally, would be counted as transgression. So perhaps a knee jerk reaction would possibly be an accident, but the second and third and forth time would no no longer be an accident. There are times where things are permitted but not explicitly recommended. eg. Polygamy, Divorce etc.

    We come into the world condemned, some receive grace and some receive judgment but all have justice.

  • @larry

    You are not a follower of Christ if you hate your brother as we are commanded to love our neighbors as our selves. We are told to love our enemies and pray for those who persecute us.

    “There are my who would will call me lord and i will say depart from me, i never knew you…”

    This tells us that there will be those who are deceived into thinking that they are ‘Christian’, that they will believe they are but are not. I believe it is these people that you refer to. The ones who say they believe but would rather do what is right in there own eyes under the Christian title. I feel for your frustration.

  • I too would be very interested in the answer to that question, Joseph. Because I kinda sorta suspect I know the answer to it.

  • Christians like yourself are the ones are not the persecuted. They are the persecutors. They are the ones striking their neighbor, not turning the other cheek. They do so with the notion that God absolves them for bad behavior.

    Since you are not speaking up in opposition to the alleged Christians who promote malice, prejudice, attacks on others, I feel no need to take your denials and equivocation seriously. Instead of trying to justify your belief to Max, call out those who call themselves Christian but do not act as such in your eyes.

  • You’re probably right…
    His success record will still remain at 0%. Oh, wait, he is the 1st Black American to become President (well, half Black ).

  • @Doc Anthony You are really stretching to say that Jesus is directly speaking in Corinthians. That’s Paul speaking. Don’t confuse the two — they are different.

  • @larry

    Any belief requires faith. Oh only that your eyes were open and ears unplugged that you would be able to see and hear Him. How can you see the heavens and the earth and not be amazed at his work. His define nature and eternal power have been made clear since the beginning of creation so that we are with out excuse.

    Only to those whom He chooses to reveal himself would have faith because it is not by my works, my own ability that I saved, but by His will and His grace.

    Plus it is written that his had did come down and he wrote on a wall hence the phrase “the writing is on the wall”

    With all that said, don’t confusion my explanation for me thinking that I will convince you, or change your mind. All that I am expected to do is tell the truth and after that it is between you and God. You are in my prayers, sincerely. Though you do not believe I would not wish that any would parish but have a repentant heart. And please, don’t confuse people taking the title of ‘Christian’ with actually following Christ some people think they can have there cake and eat it to and if they only read and understood instead of take just the parts that affirm the fallen parts of them that they would indulge.

    more bible verses for you! 1 cor 1:18-25 :

    18For the word of the cross is folly to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. 19For it is written,

    “I will destroy the wisdom of the wise,
    and the discernment of the discerning I will thwart.”

    20Where is the one who is wise? Where is the scribe? Where is the debater of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? 21For since, in the wisdom of God, the world did not know God through wisdom, it pleased God through the folly of what we preachb to save those who believe. 22For Jews demand signs and Greeks seek wisdom, 23but we preach Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Jews and folly to Gentiles, 24but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. 25For the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men.

  • @Joseph,

    “Jesus is God.”

    So this Law was Jesus’ idea?


    “If men get into a fight with one another, and the wife of one intervenes to rescue her husband from the grip of his opponent by reaching out and SEIZING HIS PENIS, you shall cut off her hand; show no pity.” – (DEUT. 25:11)

    Why did Jesus make this law?

  • @Joseph,

    “but we would probably agree that the underlying moral principles of the Old Covenant are forever.”

    I’m shocked that you find the moral principles of the Old Covenant to be Moral:

    God’s rules for Sex Slaves
    “When a man sells his daughter as a slave, she will not be freed at the end of six years as the men are. If she does not please the man who bought her, he may allow her to be bought back again.” – Yahweh (Exodus 21:7)

    Please elaborate on the moral virtues in Sex Slavery.

  • @Joseph,

    ” we are commanded to love our neighbors as our selves…”

    No. You are cherry picking.
    You are way out of line:

    “Now we command you, brothers, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you keep away from any brother who is walking in idleness and not in accord with the tradition that you received from us.” (2 Thessalonians 3:6)
    “Avoid Them” (Romans 16:17)
    “For whoever greets him takes part in his wicked works.” (2 John 1:11)
    “If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault.” – JESUS (Matthew 18:15)
    “As for a person who [fill in whatever you want]….have nothing more to do with him, knowing that such a person is warped and sinful; he is self-condemned.” (Titus 3:9-11)
    “Let him who has done this be removed from among you.” (1 Corinthians 1:13)
    “I have come to bring FIRE…What constraints! I am impatient to bring NOT PEACE BUT DIVISION.” – Jesus (Luke 12:49-51)
    “Hate your parents…hate your life, or you are not worthy” – Jesus (Luke 14:26)

    If I said, “Treat Christians as outcasts” (which I would never do) how long would it take for you to scream bigotry?
    Yet your Jesus is no better.

  • Please use the whole context if you are going to use the scripture. if you found something difficult for me it wouldn’t be so easy to, as I have been doing, just correct the context you are using. It isn’t sex slavery, she is being sold into marriage. Read verse 10. Also though The Bible doesn’t encourage slavery, it doesn’t condemn it. Or would you forget that Christ did not come when he did to rule, but to serve being obedient to death. The bible does make rules for how to treat slaves. Seriously, you should read the whole thing next time.

    To follow Christ is to be a slave to God. He is my Lord, my Master and I do my best to follow his will faithfully. I submit to him.

    15What then? Are we to sin because we are not under law but under grace? By no means! 16Do you not know that if you present yourselves to anyone as obedient slaves,c you are slaves of the one whom you obey, either of sin, which leads to death, or of obedience, which leads to righteousness? 17But thanks be to God, that you who were once slaves of sin have become obedient from the heart to the standard of teaching to which you were committed, 18and, having been set free from sin, have become slaves of righteousness. 19I am speaking in human terms, because of your natural limitations. For just as you once presented your members as slaves to impurity and to lawlessness leading to more lawlessness, so now present your members as slaves to righteousness leading to sanctification.

    20For when you were slaves of sin, you were free in regard to righteousness. 21But what fruit were you getting at that time from the things of which you are now ashamed? For the end of those things is death. 22But now that you have been set free from sin and have become slaves of God, the fruit you get leads to sanctification and its end, eternal life. 23For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

  • to Duet 25:11 the simple way to not have your hand cut off is to follow the law. Who am I to say why the punishment is so severe but my lack of ability to understand how God makes some of his decisions should be expected…. He is GOD. How meaningless would it be to worship a god I fully understand, how small and insignificant would he have to be? Obviously the extreme nature of the punishment was meant to make action that would cause it not worth doing.

  • Didn’t say Jesus was directly speaking. But He is clearly doing DIRECT ACTION in that text.

    Jesus’s actions speak just as loud as His words, wouldn’t you agree?

  • Joseph,

    ” It isn’t sex slavery, she is being sold into marriage.”

    That is NOT true.

    Why does Jesus demand that Sex Slaves must never RUN AWAY!?

    “Slaves, be subject to your masters with all reverence, not only to those who are good and equitable but also to those who are perverse.” (1 Peter 2:18)

    Is this how you would want your mother treated by her master if she were a slave? Or your Aunt? Or your Daughter?



  • Joseph,

    “you have not known that love yourself.”

    How do you know? I was a Christian for 44 years. I know exactly how it feels to pray and to feel the “LOVE” of the Lord. Unfortunately all the evidence points to a delusional experience reinforced by traditions and cultures.

    Joseph, If you had been born in Saudi Arabia you would have been a Muslim.

    And your first rule in your religion would have been this:

    “Believers, take neither the Jews nor the Christians for your friends. (Sura 5:51)
    Infidels are those who declare: “God is the Christ, the son of Mary.” – Allah
    (Sura 5:17)

    “Infidels are those who say ‘God is one of three in a Trinity.” – Allah (Sura 5:73)

    “Make war on the infidels who dwell around you.” – Allah (Sura 9:123)

    So the only reason you didn’t grow up with this theory of Islam is because of where you were born – and nothing could be more ridiculous system of determining what is true by simply being born in a certain place.

    2+2= 4 is true everywhere on earth.
    But Christianity is only true where people decide it is true! LOL!

  • @Joseph,

    “If you knew for a fact that God was real, being the Creator of all things, would you worship him?”

    1. If you had evidence God was real I would DEFINITELY believe in God. ANY Evidence at all would completely change my position and make me a believer.

    2. Would I worship God? It depends on what kind of a God he turns out to be. If he will deny me a happy life unless I submit to worshipping God then I would have to think about that – I might. So far I’m happy without him so he has a lot of convincing to do in that area.
    It depends also on whether he can show me that he has truly been protecting all the little children who died of bone cancer. He would need to prove to me that those children are really in Heaven and that they are doing fine up there and living happily.
    Then I would worship him for that.

    Until then, Gods are bunk. Unless you have evidence.

  • “1st Black President”

    And he’s doing great.

    Economy is humming along.
    Unemployment is almost 4%
    Deficit is dropping like a rock!
    Millions more poor people have access to healthcare
    We are out of Afghanistan and Iraq – almost completely.
    Stock market is rising.
    Banks are shored up.
    Housing is booming.
    Construction jobs are growing.
    Gas prices are $2 !!!!!

    Only a right wing Christian could see a problem in that.
    “In the name of Jesus..keep away from him!” (2 Thess 3:6)

    So much for “judge not that ye be not judged”
    Oh, well. Jesus didn’t mean it anyway :
    “Deem them unworthy” – JESUS (Matt 10:13)

  • Cranmer,
    “That’s Paul speaking. Don’t confuse the two — they are different.”

    Yes, and let’s not forget Paul’s admission that —

    1. …our knowledge is partial and incomplete…
    2. …we see things imperfectly…
    3. All that I know now is partial and incomplete…
    (1 Corinthians 13:9,12)

    We always need to discover new and better ways of understanding an issue than rely solely on scripture, which is too incomplete and imperfect.

  • Max, the Old Covenant was the Old Covenant, but God is God. The principles of morality (God’s moral Truth) are like the undercurrent of a river that runs through all of Scripture. When looking at a river, we see the water on the surface, but it is flowing because of the current beneath. The practices, the remedies, the punishments, the Law, the sacrifices, etc. of the Old Covenant, were all oriented towards Divine Truth. The New Covenant has different expressions, punishments, etc., but they all serve the selfsame Truth. An example would be when a child is growing up, he/she must abide by the parents rules. But those rules are meant for little children. Then as the child grows, new rules are given to the older child, but they still serve the same moral principles as did the earlier rules, even though on the surface, they look different. So when reading the OT, we need to ask ourselves, “what is the root of this law? what is really being said here?”

  • The economy is running along, Max? Wow. First we had George Bush Sr., then Bill Clinton, then Jr, and now BO, and it has been one long sleigh ride down, down, down. In fact it has accelerated in the past 6 yrs. We enacted NAFTA, and gave companies a green light to move their manufacturing operations overseas. And indeed they did. Our fastest growing labor market these days is the “Service.” And I will tell you that Service will never make us a great nation again. Service margins are just too thin. Manufacturing is where huge margins are realized, allowing companies to compete for employees, providing large $$ for good benefits: BO and all of his predecessors have ignored the NAFTA reality, and one by one they just stand idly by and watch our country erode away. Let’s get this guy out of office, and bring in Donald Trump; he is the only candidate that understands business!

  • Might as well dump John 3:16 too, Billy. Dump Romans 1:16 and 1 Cor. 15:3-4 as well. Maybe those are “too incomplete and imperfect” likewise.

    But some of us won’t dump ’em, and we’re not even buying that “too incomplete and imperfect” snake oil. That’s not how Jesus described the character of Scripture in John 10:35.

    And since we, as Christians, don’t dump those texts, we’re not going to dump Matt. 19:4-5 (Jesus’s words), we’re not going to dump 1 Cor 6:9-11 (Paul’s words but Jesus’s deeds), nor will we dump 1 Cor. 10:13 (God’s great promise).

    It’s time for Christians to stand up and challenge this gay marraige stuff around here. That mess is not just un-biblical, it’s ANTI-biblical.

    You may win at the Supreme Court — in fact you certainly will, later this summer — but you will NEVER win out when it comes to God’s Word, the Scriptures. The Bible’s message is authoritative and unbreakable (John 10:35), and you’ll find that it’s NOT subject to judicial repeal nor political censorship.

  • Anthony,

    Because your next comment dated – Apr 12, 2015 at 1:27 am – didn’t have a ‘Reply’ feature, I need to reply to it here —

    I’m pretty sure I never said to ‘dump’ anything in scripture.

    I do think that many things in scripture need to be ‘reasoned out’ for them to be better applicable and more meaningful.

    These are very honest things Paul declares —
    1. …our knowledge is partial and incomplete…
    2. …we see things imperfectly…
    3. All that I know now is partial and incomplete…
    (1 Corinthians 13:9,12)

    They stand alone and are not compromised by other narratives. They are an invitation for us all, as we are led, to fill-in-the-blanks or empty spaces that imperfection, incomplete and partial knowledge create.

    There’s NO need to ‘dump’ anything. There’s NO snake oil here either.

    Here’s what we should be looking for every day and in every way —
    But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will ‘guide you’ into all the truth…he will tell you what is yet to come……. John 16:13

    What is yet to come? I don’t know. Hope it’s something good, which it usually is. I’ll never leave you or forsake you He said, so what’s there to worry about?

    Here’s a good thought that encourages us to do always —
    ABOVE ALL, LOVE EACH OTHER DEEPLY, because love covers over a multitude of sins……1 Peter 4:8

    That tells me how we should treat LGBT’s….and everybody else.

  • BB,

    “once we accurately define atheism as a mental disorder…”

    Atheism is lack of belief in a god. That is all it is. I don’t believe your claim that Christ is anything more than a legend.
    You have your right to it – I’m not calling you mentally imbalanced.
    How dare you do that to me by inferring that somehow I am imbalanced?

    Atheist logic:
    I have a 20 dollar bill.
    – Where?
    Right here, in my hand.
    – Oh, yes, I see it.

    Religious logic:
    I have a 20 dollar bill
    – Where?
    Prove I don’t! How dare you doubt me!

    How would you talk to a person who was being so ridiculous?
    With respect? LOL!