Beliefs David Gushee: Christians, Conflict and Change Ethics Faith Opinion

Telling the story of my departure from American evangelicalism

The cover photo from the author's forthcoming memoir. Image courtesy of Westminster John Knox Press.

Recently the virtual pages of Religion News Service have been graced with further crossfire related to the endless evangelical argument about LGBTQ inclusion.

Jonathan Merritt posted a piece defending evangelical blogger Jen Hatmaker against her evangelical critics, who have treated her to the now-standard exclusion, criticism and rejection since she offered full LGBTQ inclusion.

Conservative Southern Baptist Denny Burk offered the usual rebuttal. His message was that the door is open for those of us who have abandoned clear biblical truth to come back home to orthodoxy; but there can be no compromise with error.

In Jonathan Merritt’s post, he referred to my own work, an October 2014 book called “Changing Our Mind.” In that book, which Jonathan helped make (in)famous with this interview upon its release, I argued step by step that it was possible (and, finally, imperative) for evangelical Christians to change our mind on many aspects of “the LGBTQ issue.”

When I released my book, I was met with the same chorus of rejection from many of the same people who are treating Jen Hatmaker to the same experience today. I should not have been surprised, but was surprised, at the ferocity of the resistance. Publishing that book led to my exile from the American evangelical community.

The good news for me was that my career was by that time not dependent on good standing in the U.S. evangelical community.

It has taken me some time to process fully what has happened to me and what I should make of it. I have had a bit of post-evangelical syndrome, and have laid low for a while.

But now, roughly 30 months later, I am about to offer two kinds of public responses to what I have experienced. You might call them a “micro” and a “macro” response.

At the “micro” level, I have prepared a new third edition of my “Changing Our Mind” book. It will be out in early June. This edition contains a new introduction, a new study guide, and a lengthy new “Response to Critics,” in which I finally engage the main lines of critique that my book — and subsequent interviews and posts — received. (It is not yet available for pre-order. I will alert readers when this changes.)

A highlight of this epilogue includes my acknowledgment that common “evangelical” modes of reading Scripture and undertaking moral discernment will never lead to a fully inclusive posture toward LGBTQ persons. But I then go on to make the case for why I believe those common evangelical modes are inadequate ways both of reading Scripture and discerning moral truth.

At the “macro” level, I have also written a memoir: “Still Christian: Following Jesus Out of American Evangelicalism.” This book, out in August with Westminster John Knox Press, is both a spiritual autobiography and professional memoir. It tells about a confused young man wandering into a Southern Baptist church in the summer of 1978 and emerging four days later as a born-again Christian — and what happened to him in the 40 years after that.

What happened? A love affair with Jesus that for the great majority of 40 years was spent in Southern Baptist and evangelical contexts, until my own sense of moral and intellectual integrity forced me to take stands leading to my exit from those worlds.

Everybody’s story is different. Of course millions of American Christians remain quite happily situated in Southern Baptist and/or evangelical Christianity. I wish them only the best, and am done fighting with them.

But millions of others have made their exits, or had their exits made for them, and now wander in a kind of exile. I think that my story might connect with that of many others who find themselves post-all-of-that, perhaps helping chart a way forward.

I now believe that incommensurable differences in understanding the very meaning of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, the interpretation of the Bible, and the sources and methods of moral discernment, separate many of us from our former brethren — and that it is best to name these differences clearly and without acrimony, on the way out the door.

I also believe that attempting to keep the dialogue going is mainly fruitless. The differences are unbridgeable. They are articulated daily in endless social media loops.

Still, in “Changing Our Mind,” 3rd edition, to discharge my scholarly debts and to be fair to those who have sought to engage my thinking, I attempt one last foray into dialogue with my critics on the LGBTQ inclusion front.

And in “Still Christian,” I give an account of my spiritual journey for any who might want to engage it.

Enjoy!

About the author

David Gushee

512 Comments

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  • Great column, Mr. Gushee. Thank you for writing this. And thank you for having the integrity you so clearly demonstrate.

    This Is something I have said many, many times before, but I will say it again here. I have no idea whether you agree with it or not. But I have been in this fight for
    45 years, have been dealing with the “religious”– quotes are intentional and required– issue for all of that time, and I am absolutely certain that it is true.

    This is most emphatically NOT about whatever the Bible may or may not say, on a subject which may or may not be homosexuality, which may or may not have been understood 2000 years ago any better than it is understood at this very moment, by people who claim to be educated and compassionate.

    This is about A very ancient, very vicious, and very durable prejudice that has been so engrained in our culture and way of thinking that it is virtually impossible for many hyper-religious people to think about it with anything remotely approaching an open mind, let alone objectivity and compassion.

    It is so intertwined into the very fibers of our culture that it has twisted and perverted and corrupted everything it has come in contact with, including, if not especially, Scripture itself. Why ? Because it is all about lies, lies, and more lies, all of which are employed to disguise the hate and fear of homobigotry. Whatever the sodom story may be about, it certainly is not about homosexuality, and has nothing at all to do with the lives of anyone I have ever known. Fathers are afraid to kiss their sons because someone might think they’re queer, or turn them queer. That in a nutshell is the basic perversion that has corrupted the church, the scripture, and possibly well-meaning people, though “well meaning” to me has become as questionable as anything else.

    I have become increasingly convinced that homosexual hating homosexuals– RNS will not permit me to use the term I usually use, which lacks the suffix “sexual”– infest the conservative churches. These sorry excuses for integritous human beings are desperately hoping to deflect attention from themselves while they try to control themselves under the guise of controlling ME. Professional Christians have been documented telling all kinds of lies for Jesus about gay people, using those lies to justify the harm they have inflicted on our lives– and they convince themselves that they are doing good, that they “love” us. These Mormon and evangelical churches, and the Roman church, have funded political campaigns costing millions to oppose my marriage, while children the world over starve. The Roman church is especially egregious on this case, as it has attempted to blame innocent gay men for its documented centuries of child depredation, and the subsequent cover-ups– all to prevent something is silly as “a scandal in the church.”

    What about the scandal of falsely blaming gay men for it, let alone the scandal of blaming us for every single fault and failure of Holy Heterosexuality?

    And let’s not even get into the historical revisionism and absolute nonsense about my innocuous sex life and the fall of Rome, the destruction of western civilization, and inherent evil Bent on destroying god, the church, the family, and the world. That kind of hyperbole simply underlines what this is all about,

    So, simply put, I agree with you there is a vast chasm that cannot be bridged, because one side, and one side only, has absolutely no interest in bridging that chasm, not as long as fear and hate are disguised as sincere religious belief. Not as long as there are oceans of power, money, and dominion to be had by ignoring what is obvious. Not as long as people hide behind their faith and a facade of righteousness to deflect attention from themselves, and who think that somehow, I live at the same level of immorality, furtiveness, self hatred, dishonesty and fear that they do.

    And certainly, not as long as that one side wants to define the central tenet of Christianity as no longer the sacrifice, death, and resurrection of Jesus, but “get the gays.” It’s a dangerous game to play, As poll after poll of young evangelicals show, the future of the evangelical movement is in jeopardy, because they simply reject the very idea.

    Thanks again.

  • Wow, Ben! Yours is my favorite of all the posts I’ve ever read from anybody about anything!
    Thank you for so eloquently expressing what needs to be said (and religiously repeated).
    And thank you for sharing your enviable clarity of mind and admirable intensity of heart.

  • For many of us raised in the Mormon Church, California Prop 8 was a bridge too far. If you have LGBTQ loved ones and have faith in Christ, the hatred taught by Mormons and Evangelicals alike is simply unacceptable. Calling such obvious intolerance “love” is blasphemy against God and God’s own love. Torturing and humiliating LGBTQ youth, causing many needless suicides, is the opposite of Christian love.

  • Thanks, G. 😘😍😄 That is high praise indeed, coming from someone I respect for the same reasons.

  • “It is so intertwined into the very fibers of our culture that it has twisted and perverted and corrupted everything it has come in contact with, including, if not especially, Scripture itself.” Absolutely Ben. It should be intertwined into the very fibres of our culture. God wrote the law on our hearts – even yours and I agree it has become twisted. There is no “homobigotry”within the church. There is a desire to see the person forsake their homosexuality and begin a journey to Heaven and eternity with Jesus – the One who loved them enough to die for them.
    On your and my heart is written:

    Leviticus 18:22 – 22 You shall not lie with a male as with a woman. It is an abomination.
    Leviticus 20:13 – If a man lies with a male as he lies with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination. They shall surely be put to death. Their blood shall be upon them.
    This is what keeps homosexuals safe from the homosexual “activists” who would rather see everyone in Hell because of their selfish life choices.

  • Blah.

    Blah.

    Blah.

    And once again, explicitly calling for the death of gay men by execution. You are not a nice person.

    Never a mirror when you need one.

  • I haven’t called for anyone’s death. If you have difficulty with Christ teaching homosexuality is a sin worthy of death, then all the more reason why someone would want the people saved and away from the sin, Ben. That’s only humanitarian.

  • I see a wow from G Key, I’ll raise another wow. You know Ben if what you’re saying is not true then “changing our minds” shouldn’t be an option for Christians, then the Bible would be easyier to understand on this point. But I know people who are just like the people you describe, decent, good, hard working people. I taught my kids it was okay to love these poeple we knew. There are people out there who will say I absolutely did the right thing teaching my kids what I taught them. Those same people agree, when told to, when we kick out certain people, in love of coarse, and kids like my kids say well that’s just lovely. So to use some Christian speak I’m not going to be a slave to fear like it says in Romans. I think, like the guy with one talent in the parable, we find the God we seek. The God we seek seems to show up when we spend time with the people we invest in.

  • Sandi!!!! Please don’t quote Leviticus for how we should live our lives unless you are going to talk about how we go about bringing our sacrifices to the temple as well. It sounds ridiculous! We live by a new commandment, Jesus’ command: love. It is my hope that your pastor is teaching that.

    The Gospel of Jesus has nothing to do with sexuality and will not crumble if the church accepts responsible relationships whether heterosexual or homosexual. The God I worship and the Jesus I follow are WAY bigger and MORE loving than that.

    I pray that the eyes of your heart be enlightened.

    FYI- I am a “straight” woman married for 14 years. So I am not in a mode of self defense.

  • Sandi, we’ve gotta be careful of looking too much like the Pharisees. Let’s not fall into that trap.

  • The Pharisees weren’t intent on helping people. They were intent on controlling them and trying to outshine them – neither of which is close to trying to assure a person goes to Heaven…..but thanks.

  • Well, I’d check with Christ to see if your “god” resembles anything close to Him. He taught that homosexuality is a sin. Now, He died for those people so they don’t end up in a self imposed Hell, but that is their choice. Either they want to be forgiven and helped out of their sin, or they choose the other.
    Why do you want homosexuals to go to Hell? Why do you want to hurt them like that?

  • Sending homosexuals onto the road to Hell, is not an example of “Christian love”.

  • I believe all our job is as followers of Jesus is to point ALL PEOPLE toward Him and to hope they develop a relationship with Him. Yes, we are to loving rebuke that which is harmful to humankind. However, I believe the Holy Spirit is powerful enough to convict a person’s heart as to what we need to repent from.

    BTW- Jesus never calls homosexuality sinful. He calls “sexual immorality” a sin. And please do not lump a diverse and unique group of people under the label of homosexual, it is LGBTQ.

    Lastly, 1 in 10 people are born intersex, meaning their biology is not configured straight male or female. Please don’t deny those people whom God knit together, the ability to have intimate relationships.

    Sometimes in our desire to “help” people “be assured of heaven” we end up being anything but Christlike… just sayin’

  • Christ called homosexuality sinful in Leviticus.

    Homosexuality is a component of immorality hon. Christ forbade that stating they would not see the kingdom of Heaven. He was quite specific. Again, why do you want to hurt these people?

  • Sandi, you are seriously misguided if you think I am hurting someone if they don’t choose Christ.

    Jesus actually talked much more about stewardship and money and how it would be a miracle for the wealthy to enter Gods kingdom.

    So are you saying all us westerners are going to hell because our wealth exceeds most of the worlds population?!

    You better start focusing on saving all the rich western Christians, which out number the LGBTQ community….

    There is great danger in seeing the world in only black and white. And even more dangerous to believe you know who is going to hell and who is not. You are not the Judge… and I am thankful for that.

  • Actually, my focus is to help homosexuals. For the third time, why do you want to hurt them?

  • Again, why do you want to hurt them? Christ said several times that they would go to Hell. Why do you choose to hurt them and not lead them from their sin? You seem to want rich people saved….why not homosexuals? Christ loves them also.

  • Better to not engage the trolls. If I pulled out my DSM I could give you several diagnoses that fit this poster’s symptoms.

  • You are correct! As Gushee stated, “I also believe that attempting to keep the dialogue going is mainly fruitless. The differences areunbridgeable. They are articulated daily in endless social media loops.”
    My fruitless mistake.

  • Time and again Christians have had to give up a literal interpretation of a Bible verse. Here are some obvious examples:
    * The command to slaughter witches (Exodus 22:18)
    * The justification of slavery (Ephesians 6:5)
    * The prohibition of divorce and remarriage (Luke 16:18)
    Christians have stopped slaughtering witches and keeping slaves. Therefore they can tolerate homosexuality in the same way that they tolerate divorce and remarriage.

  • Your getting the full sandimonious here. She doesn’t get any better, but occasionally, does manage to do worse.

    She doesn’t see that her brand of Christianity just helps other people to leave all Christianity. I’m sure that her brand of Jesus will have a lot to say to her should they ever meet. And I sincerely doubt it will be the words “thanks.”

    Samdimonious is exactly whom Mr. GUshee is referring to.

  • I am sure that when Sandi and Jesus meet that He will have compassion on her, just as I pray he has on all of us.

  • … by default and I’m sure with much sorrow. It is like an “unadoption” process. So very sad. BUT there is hope greater than that of denominational affiliation, or greater Christian identity. Our loyalty belongs to Jesus Chrst our King and Savior and non other.

    I am grateful to David for his conviction and unwavering stance, given his presence in the evangelical circle.

  • You do a great job of ensuring your own place in hell by constantly trying to persecute LGBTQ persons on your own Jesus Jihad. As a rabidly homophobic anti-Mormon critic, go away. This is not fertile ground for either of your twin phobias.

  • With quite a bit of sorrow, actually, because you’re following a Christ of your own making. You’ve made an idol of sex. So has David Gushee. I agree the differences are unbridgeable, because one view is located in a culturally relativistic, sophomoric understanding of the Christian faith and human sexuality, while the other — classic, biblical orthodoxy — sees sexuality as an intrinsic, inseparable component of humanity that must also be brought into line with the Gospel of grace and the life of a disciple. But you go you’re way, exchanging the truth of God for a lie.

  • Next to the current Pope, David Gushee is the only Christian I pay any mind to, not because of his stance on gays, but because he (like the Pope) represents the best of his faith: kindness, decency, compassion, and defending the marginalized, the hated, and the despised. You are a credit to your faith David Gushee!

  • Yeah, your “fruitless mistake.” And that was just with Sandi’s posts, (which are always based on Scripture, always calm & respectful, and straight to the point.)

    But if I (a longtime employee of Acme Revilers & Slanderers, Inc.), have to engage you and your unbiblical support of “gay-self-identity” and “gay-marriage”, you may be REALLY feeling all fruitless when it’s over! Heh!!

  • Thanks, Ben. But as for mental clarity, the truth is, I lost and found “intensity” three times in this shiny mind o’ mine before I was able to finish that prior reply!😖

  • Not to mention stoning rebellious kids to death (Deuteronomy 21:18-21).
    Thank God kids aren’t rebelliou/s!

  • “You’ve made an idol of sex”?
    Either (1) you haven’t read Shannon Claussen’s other posts to this conversation, or (2) you’re doing a fine job of demonstrating what projection looks like.
    Or is it possible that (3) you’re being sarcastic and just forgot the “/s”?
    I suggest #3. It’ll help you save both face and faith while you sincerely and humbly reconsider your disrespect of another’s spiritual boundaries and inviolate beliefs.

    As for “you’re following a Christ of your own making”: Mirror mirror.

    For further information, please (re)read Mr. Gushee’s last 4 or 5 paragraphs.

  • I’m going to begin my responses, by offering a link to Dr. Denny Burk’s first article, which was mentioned by Dr. Gushee. Honestly, THAT article, was nothing short of excellent.

    It explained why it’s necessary for evangelical Christians to stand up for the Scriptures when non-evangelical Christians (like Jen Hatmaker and David Gushee) are clearly attacking the Scriptures, regarding major issues. Readers, here is the real deal:

    http://www.dennyburk.com/it-is-not-character-assassination-for-the-church-to-be-the-church/

    Totally on point, yes. But Denny Burk has already written an excellent followup essay, responding to Gushee’s article above. Readers, just click right here and deal in the truth.

    http://www.dennyburk.com/i-completely-agree-with-david-gushee-on-this-our-differences-are-unbridgeable/

  • Well Ben, “G Key” is all enraptured by your wonderful gay eloquence. But me, I see some very real problems with your rant.

    You said, “Great column, Mr. Gushee”, but two paragraphs down, you openly dismissed Gushee’s main point. You didn’t even try to engage it. You just punted it. You ignored what both David Gushee and Denny Burk agreed on. So your compliment, is actually false.

    Gushee spelled out the key issues: “the very meaning of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, the interpretation of the Bible, and the sources and methods of moral discernment.” This is exactly where the “incommensurable”, “unbridgeable” differences are occurring. This can’t be brushed off, not even slightly. Core issues are here.

    But you brushed it off anyway. “This is most emphatically NOT about whatever the Bible may or may not say, on a subject which may or may not be homosexuality.”
    However, both Gushee and Burk made totally clear that yes, this IS about what the Bible says, and yes, the subject IS homosexuality, sexual behavior, and gay marriage. It’s undeniable.

    So let’s be honest. I know some folks up-voted you, but the reality is that you’re not even rationally engaging what Gushee and Burk said..

    God loves you, and He still holds out His great invitation to you despite all the things of the past. But your gay atheist religion is scrambling your eggs, and you MUST abandon it. Stop hating God, stop hating Jesus, stop hating the Bible, (and stop hating rationality too)!

  • If by, “I’m done fighting with them,” Mr. Gushee means he will not respond in the future to those who contest his perspective, I think he will find that proposition rather difficult. The natural response of the human animal when challenged is to defend. It takes a great deal of rectitude to suffer the slings and arrows of communicative interplay without response.

  • Ahhh, Floyd, your usual curmudgeonly self. From a biblical perspective I am in accord with both you and Sandi, but I must admit that I am often amazed at your chutzpah, if that’s the right word. However boldly you take your stance, there always seems to be an underlying thread of humor in your posts. Though, of course, many people can’t find it. I prefer a more nuanced approach, though I can’t claim that it is any more effective.

  • Actually, RNS is remarkably fertile ground for every kind of religious or non-religious notion.

  • Thank you Edward. I wish (and continue seeking) to try to find that “underlying thread of humor ” in all my posts, although the honest truth is that sometimes I can see it and offer it to readers, and other times I can’t really see it and can’t really offer it. Sometimes I type something but then delete it, just in case I’m over the line.

    Still working on the issue. But I do like offering a spoonful of sugar.

    But I notice that you are **always** successful with your nuances. They ARE invariably on target for readers on all sides (including myself) of any controversy. That is a gift Edward, one that you cannot buy at Wal-Mart.

  • Apparently, the axiom that different people read the same thing differently applies not only to the Bible, but also to Mr. Gushee’s article. Note the following excerpts:

    “…the endless evangelical argument about LGBTQ inclusion.”
    “Jonathan Merritt posted a piece defending evangelical blogger Jen Hatmaker…”
    “…I argued step by step that it was possible (and, finally, imperative) for evangelical Christians to change our mind on many aspects of ‘the LGBTQ issue.’ ”
    “Publishing that book led to my exile from the American evangelical community.”
    “…common ‘evangelical’ modes of reading scripture and undertaking moral discernment will never lead to a fully inclusive posture toward LGBTQ persons. But I then go on to make the case for why I believe those common evangelical modes are inadequate ways both of reading scripture and discerning moral truth.”
    “…forty years was spent in Southern Baptist and evangelical contexts, until my own sense of moral and intellectual integrity forced me to take stands leading to my exit from those worlds.”
    “…incommensurable differences in understanding the very meaning of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, the interpretation of the Bible, and the sources and methods of moral discernment, separate many of us from our former brethren — and that it is best to name these differences clearly and without acrimony, on the way out the door.”
    “…attempting to keep the dialogue going is mainly fruitless. The differences are unbridgeable. They are articulated daily in endless social media loops.”

    The “subject” of Mr. Gushee’s criticism is clearly the behavior of the evangelical community — not the behavior of LGBTQ people. In fact, your reply to me (and, vicariously, to Ben) eloquently exemplifies the subject of Mr. Gushee’s article.

  • As Edward so often illustrates, “humbly” is the key to “**always** successful”.

  • Excuse me, sir, but making an “idol out of sex” is the very last thing I am doing. I actually could care much less about sex than you are inferring.

    And actually, I have a fairly orthodox view of biblical sexuality. I am just very sensitive to all the hate, name calling and judgement followers of Christ approach one another with; it is heartbreaking, and I firmly believe grieves the Spirit much more than one’s sexual orientation.

  • The praise of the godless is not merely a poor recommendation of a Christian, but a symptom of something very seriously wrong. (John 15:19, Luke 6:26).

  • “This is the bread that came down from heaven. Your ancestors ate manna and died, but whoever feeds on this bread will live forever.” He said this while teaching in the synagogue in Capernaum. On hearing it, many of his disciples said, “This is a hard teaching. Who can accept it?”

    Aware that his disciples were grumbling about this, Jesus said to them, “Does this offend you? The Spirit gives life; the flesh profits nothing. The words I have spoken to you are spirit and they are life. However, there are some of you who do not believe…”

    … From that time on, many of His disciples turned back and no longer accompanied Him. So Jesus asked the Twelve, “Do you want to leave too?” Simon Peter replied, “Lord, to whom would we go? You have the words of eternal life.” John 6:58-63

  • Yes yes to only those niceties that make us comfortable. No no no to anything that would render us uncomfortable!

  • “…my career, by that time, was not dependent on good standing in the US evangelical community.”
    He might as well have said that his career was not dependent on being in good standing with Biblical truth, or for that matter, God.
    I think this one statement is the most revealing in the entire article. As the Bible says, your heart is where your treasure is. Money drives most behavior.

  • Perhaps but Sandi ambulance chases Mormon and/or LGBTQ topics to judge either or both for Jesus with her litany of hate passages from the Bible.

  • I personally only “engage the trolls” to give the public some arguments against them. I don’t hope to convince the trolls.

  • Here’s where you and I may agree, if we both deal upfront with his words:

    “…incommensurable differences in understanding the very meaning of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, the interpretation of the Bible, and the sources and methods of moral discernment, separate many of us from our former brethren — and that it is best to name these differences clearly and without acrimony, on the way out the door.”

  • Or not.

    And THAT is the point of all of this. Believe whatever you like. Keep it out of my life.

    Meanwhile, Sandimonious has once again repeated a call for my execution. I know she is saying “I’m not saying that. GAWD is saying that.” But GAWD isn’t doing the typing, is he? Didn’t Jesus come to replace the old law with a new one?

    What do YOU say? As Mr. salkin elsewhere, the barbarism is right there in the white spaces between the dark letters. It’s apparent to me. Is it not apparent to you? You are always saying that Christianity has ennobled mankind? does that sound noble to you? The little bit o’ Leviticus, instructions to priests 2500 years ago, is responsible for the death of untold thousands of people? was it a good thing?

    Oh, wait. I’m boring you again. Sorry.

  • Actually, RNS churns out a constant, Christianized “gay-self-identity” sales-pitch.
    The “LGBTQ topics” always conform to the “Gay-is-Okay, Once-Gay-Always-Gay, God-Loves-Gay-Marriage.” memes.

    Absolutely NO “Hey I used to be gay, but then I met Jesus…” stories.

    I’m shocked that they gave the evangelical Denny Burk a fair hearing at all.

  • One man’s rants are another man’s anathema.

    Or, how I see your brand of religion– from Ernest Brahma: “It is related,” said a dispassionate voice behind them, “that a person of limited intelligence, on being assured that he would certainly one day enjoy an adequate competence if he closely followed the industrious habits of the thrifty bee, spent the greater part of his life in anointing his thighs with the yellow powder which he laboriously collected from the flowers of the field.”

  • It may take you a while to get there, but you get there. And that is what is important. I prefer my people to be moral, rather than merely claiming possession of morals.

  • You read things the way you prefer to read them. And we KNOW what those are. NO, Mr. gushee does not agree with Denny Burk– or you. that’s pretty much the entire point of his column. G key pretty much deals with you there. I won’t bother.

    I don’t hate god, any more than I hate all of the other things I’m Pretty sure aren’t real. That’s a story you tell yourself.

    No, I don’t hate Jesus, for almost the same reason. I’m pretty sure he existed, but don’t think he was god. Another story you tell yourself, Mr. Bee.

    I don’t hate the Bible, but I do hate what is done with it, In that way, I’m probably a much better Christian than you are. love the sinner. Hate how they sin against other people and call it The Word o’ God.

    And as for rationality, you have demonstrated repeatedly exactly how irrational you are on the subject of mylife. no thanks.

  • floydlee and Sandi, both Bible-thumping holy homophobes who also hate on the Mormons and anyone else who doesn’t fit their pre-Civil Rights version of the “gospel.”

  • Umm, your main rant refused to deal with (in fact, it openly punted on) the quoted paragraph there. That paragraph is Gushee’s main point, and that’s what you blew past with no attempt at engagement at all.

    So I’ve left the door open for G Key to deal upfront with it instead. So far, nothing yet. Or you yourself can go back, and deal honestly with Gushee’s point (instead of openly ducking it).

    PS… If you didn’t hate God and the Bible, you would not be messing around with the atheist religion. You already know that God is real.

  • Not really, Edward. All it takes is valuing your own time. I have long known that I will never, ever reach people poisoned by toxic religious belief. I make the effort for a while, for the benefit of those not so poisoned.

  • Honey, we are all of us, every one of us, a follower of the god of our own making. Some people prefer that their god represent love and acceptance,, others that their god represents judgment and pain.

    GOd made man in his own image. And man, being a gentleman, returned the compliment,

  • Let me remind the audience that Exodus International, an Evangelical organization that claimed to change people from gay to straight in the direction of attractions recently has shut down its doors. Even its founders now admit it has changed no one’s basic attractions.

  • This is more like the rambling transcript at the psychiatrists than anything else: full of sweeping generalizations, spleen ventings, Sturm und Drang, swelling with drama, but little by the way of facts. I guess it is true: set yourself on fire and people will come and watch you burn.

  • facebook – ex-LGBT through Jesus Christ
    Restored Hope Network

    These are people who will help you and show you that homosexuality is nothing more than a sin to be cleansed from.

    1 Corinthians 6:11 – And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.

  • Such a touching tribute I was inspired to put keys to screen and write this poem.

    This summer afternoon
    in mid June
    a mild breeze
    a friendly sneeze
    two comrades espy
    and catch the other’s eye
    and rush to each across
    the meadow lush
    in slowmotion
    with one notion
    into each others awaiting arms
    and dance among the meadow folk
    and bask in each others charms.

    You inspired me. Sigh.

  • The word used in 1 Corinthians 6:9 does not mean someone who directs sexual attraction to the same gender. It is only referring to behavior. Let us agree the word arsenokoitus used there is derived from Leviticus 20:13. This text in Leviticus ONLY addresses an act, it does not address direction of attractions at all- so therefore 1 Corinthians 6:9-11 only means a change in behavior, not in feelings. Just engaging in homosexual acts does not make a person gay, it is the feelings that do. Irving Bieber was a Psychologist long ago who claimed to have changed 30% of gay men to straight. When I called him on the phone, he admitted his patients all still had Gay feelings. Lots of Gay men can refrain from outward behavior and some can even function heterosexually, but their attractions remain the same. Similarly, would being a Christian remove all ability to feel anger or fear? Or, would it change the way we express these feelings? Alan Chambers was able to marry and have children, but his gay feelings never went away. http://m.huffpost.com/us/entry/3696750

  • “. . . God is Sovereign.” No, Sandi, God is a Superstition that often functions as an effective tool for people who seek absolute sovereignty over the lives of others.

  • You make things up as you go along, again, Daniel. Homosexuality, is homosexuality. It is a sin and it is abhorred by the Lord. You can try to split it into little piece of, well, maybe He approves of this, or maybe, He approves of that, so it appears not to be a sin, but when we all stand before the Lord, the sins we commit will matter – if unrepented. He said that homosexuality is a sin and that He will cleanse us of our sin when we repent. Simple as that.
    Also, you provide no scripture, again.

    Leviticus 18:22 – 22 You shall not lie with a male as with a woman. It is an abomination.

    Leviticus 20:13 – If a man lies with a male as he lies with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination. They shall surely be put to death. Their blood shall be upon them.

    When you choose to believe the world, over the truth of God, you do yourself a disservice. When you repeat it as “authority” you do others a disservice.

    1 Timothy 6:20 – New International Version
Timothy, guard what has been entrusted to your care. Turn away from godless chatter and the opposing ideas of what is falsely called knowledge,

  • Then you must worship your “god” well, as your comments usually reflect your desire to convince me the Lord does not exist. Are you seeking sovereignty over the lives of others with this malarky?

  • I don’t make things up as I go along. I have said for decades and it is my own experience is that feelings don’t change. You may think I am just splitting, but you seem to want everything to be black and white with no nuance. Even the word for lust or epithymia is not always used negatively in the New Testament. Words have many shades of meaning.

  • You wrote, “Lots of Gay men can refrain from outward behavior and some can even function heterosexually, but their attractions remain the same.”
    No disrespect, but that statement need NOT be true in Christ. No way.

    Everybody’s different, but there ain’t nobody whose specific temptations (“attractions”, you said), are beyond Christ’s invincible power to deal with. 1 Cor. 6:11 and 1 Cor. 10:13 are nuclear bombs, not toy cap guns.

    “Today, I can tell you that I am no longer a homosexual and am no longer interested in having sex with men. I am an ordained minister and my wife and I allow God to use what He has brought us through to help countless others.” — Jim Venice, Pure Heart Ministries, via Restored Hope Network.

    Venice also wrote — and this is important — “It was not a quick fix but rather a long process. I did not get this way over night and it was not going to go away over night either.”
    Many have said the same thing, though there’s a few for who God has done a quicker, “explosive blast” thing. Everybody’s different. But your SSA feelings are NOT beyond the impossible power of the living Jesus. No joke.

  • Romans 10:17 ESV
    So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ”
    We don’t trust our feelings. We trust Christ’s Word.
    And again, Daniel has no scripture to support his assertions.

  • I did demonstrate from scripture that 1 Corinthians 6:9-11 does NOT mean change of feelings. I took Greek in college AND lived in Greece for two years. I took courses in Greek to the advanced level there. I know what the words mean. My step mother is Greek. Anyway we saved by faith, not by Heterosexuality, according the verse you just quoted.

  • We actually AGREE on something! Faith DOES come from Hearing the Word of God. I came to faith when I first read the New Testament. I couldn’t just will myself to faith apart from the Word. But faith is not the same as a change in Sexual Orientation.

  • Bieber was of course major homophobe, but made a fair amount of money at it. I read one of his books once during college. Complete and utter nonsense. Your contact with him is just further evidence that he was more concerned about his income and reputation than he was about “helping” anyone.

    Very much like some of the evangelicals who agree with Jen Hatmaker but don’t want to endanger their income streams. And frankly, I suspect that Bieber was very much like to homosexual hating homosexuals who hide out in the church. Was he queer himself? I have no idea, but I do remember thinking that what motivated him was an extreme desire to raise himself up above people he despised. So in that way, he had a great deal in common.

  • Joke.

    Deep denial. Just as bisexual as he ever was, just like Ted Haggard who was cured– certified cured– three times, but finally admitted whatever he went through, it hadn’t changed him.

    “I used to be gay, but now I’m straight” is Christianese for “I was always bisexual, but the gay part really bothered me.”

  • Jesus has already been executed in your place, Ben. And in mine. You’re rather wasting everyone’s time on this point.

  • But how do you KNOW for certain that he is in “deep denial”, Daniel?

    Why are you suggesting that Jesus Christ could *not* have done it for him, especially given the Bible’s great promises?

  • Certainly it is. You accused Sandi of calling for your execution. Neither she nor I call for anyone’s execution because the execution has already happened. For all time. All that’s left for any of us to do is to repent and accept the pardon.

  • You, I can believe, believe that.

    Sandi– no, not really. She is way to willing to believe anything about gay people, as long as it is negative. She sort of reminds me of a situation with a friend of mine, nearly 80, with a bad stutter, who married his speech therapist, and has remained in an unhappy marriage for 20 years. When he is comfortable, he almost never stutters. He was with a group of us once, no stuttering problems, until his wife showed up. AFter a few minutes of not hearing him stutter, She then said ever so sweetly: “oh, look! RIch! you’re not stuttering.”

    Well, that was the end of his free and easy speech for the evening.

    Sandi is just like that, just moreso.

  • I’m sure there are many on this site who are praying that you will come to an understanding of the truth, Daniel.
    Faith is believing Christ. Christ taught that homosexuality is a sin.
    Christ taught that He will cleanse us of our sin when we repent – the beginning of becoming a child of God. We need to give our sin to Him, and then trust Him.

  • The Bible never promises a change in Sexual Orientation. Alan Chambers undeniably thought the same thing about himself, until he faced reality. I myself tried to change years ago and there were times I thought I was not gay. Have such claimants watch gay porn and it is certain they would get excited- this would prove that they hadn’t changed. All they are doing is avoiding sexual stimuli, so that way they do not think about sex.

  • I am praying that you will believe in Christ and stop believing that it is being heterosexual that saves us. I believe in Christ and so I am justified.

  • Ben, you can hate Jesus in me, but He still loves you and wants to see you free.

  • You can try to circumvent my point all you like, Daniel, but you know what I am saying. You are fighting Christ, not me. You need to focus more on following Him, rather than defending homosexuality.

  • Again thanks for responding. I’ve heard you talk about “Sexual Orientation” before, and each time you talk about it as if
    (1) SO is stronger than your own supernatural Jesus Christ who you said you put your faith in, and
    (2) as if there have been NO reports of SO-Change in any scientific sources.

    (Shoot, even the totally pro-gay Shidlo-Schroeder study at least found SIX cases of SO-change, and that doesn’t even deal with the SO-change cases that Masters & Johnson reported decades ago.. )

    So what’s up here? How is it that your King Jesus is infinitely-strong enough to supernaturally save your soul and change your life by faith, but now He’s too whipped-dog weak to bring changes and healings to your SO and your SSA “feelings”?

  • You are fighting Christ because you deny his very words in John 3:16 which states that “God so Loved the World, that he gave his only begotten son, that ALL (πας- pas) who believe in him may not perish but have Eternal Life” How could it be all “except” anyone who has ANY homosexual attractions? You can’t reconcile your belief in heterosexuality with that of Christ. Christ taught us to love him MORE than our heterosexuality.

  • But religious people NEED a group that it’s moral to hate. That’s fundamental to religious freedom.

  • Does your church stone male and female adulterers to death? Leviticus commands it. If not, you are an apostate and need to be stoned to death.

  • I DO like your tone a LOT better than Sandi’s, thanks. I am REALLY trying NOT to lash out at Sandi, but she just keeps cursing and swearing at me. At least you do sound a lot more Civil. I guess there are a LOT of people who REALLY did want to change their feelings and without exception, all of them found that this was impossible. It was something that they didn’t want to believe at first, but it was a hard learned lesson.

  • Leviticus decrees that all adulterers (that would include the divorced) MUST be put to death. Get busy with that and leave gay people for later.

  • Romans 1: 26 – 28. There, I fixed it. For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature:

    27 And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.

    28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;

  • You are changing the subject, though I agree that there are more sins than homosexuality warned against in the Bible and we all have to be on guard against sin – and if we do sin, we must repent, which means turn away. The LGBTQ do not believe they must repent, but rather that their lifestyle is not sinful.

  • Ah, Sandi, and here is the truth. You are not talking to misinformed people who are seeking God, but God deniers. I remind you, “can two walk together unless they agree?” It does no good to talk to them, because they are here to change your mind, not to enter into conversation about the nature of God and his commandments. It is up to God, through His Holy Spirit, to change their hearts and scripture does say that “because of their sin, God turns them over to a reprobate mind.” If God turns them over, then why would you even attempt to talk to them? This is not judgment, it is discernment.This is also why we cannot allow the unrepentant practitioner of sin into the fellowship of the saints. It is God who has cast them out. Who are we to say he made a mistake?

  • Bonnie, When quoting scripture it is important to make sure we consider context. Paul’s letter to the Romans was not a circulated letter, but one addressing the Roman Jewish-Christians and Gentile-Christians on specific issues. In 1:24ff Paul was addressing the Roman Christians on the GENTILE worship, practices and rituals. Paul is talking about how the gentiles use sex, not in an intimate way within a loving relationship, but about sex as an act of worship and ritual. This is more about orgies and sex-as-worship and idolatry, which everyone has fallen into in this broken world. God allowed the GENTILES their “vile affections” and their blatant disregard for who God is. Paul is not speaking to followers of Christ specifically, but all people! Please study up!

  • I didn’t realize that the LGBTQ had their own version of the Bible. It figures. But you are “preaching another Jesus.” I have been in evangelical churches a long time and never heard that the intimacy of the sex makes a difference in whether or not homosexuality is sin. You pretend to be an expert, but your theology is weak and twisted. “For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ.14 And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.” Bottom line, Sandi is right, but what she attempts to do here is futile. Christianity and homosexuality are incompatible, just as adultery and Christianity is, and any other number of sins. That is why it requires repentance.

  • Bonnie… I am not changing the subject, but making a valid point. Sandy thinks it is her job to “save the homosexuals” when there are many, like us westerners that must be watchful of our stewardship and wealth. Sandi claims to be a “happy housewife” and it might be assumed that a happy housewife probably lives a fairly comfortable life in comparison to the rest of the world. Is she or the wealthy Christians she knows living the way Jesus asked to enter his kingdom, willing to give up all and follow Jesus? If not it will be “difficult for to enter his kingdom.”
    Sandi should be more concerned for the wealthy who think they are “all good with God”
    My issue Bonnie is; might we take the plank out of our own eye and strain the camel?

    Oh, and repent does not mean “turn away” but “turn towards” or “re-turn” VERY subtle, but VERY different.

    Also, I believe LGBTQ Christians believe they need to repent just like other Christians, they just might not agree with you on what they need to repent from!

  • I do not claim expertise, but Paul is talking of exactly what I just said, please read several commentaries and study the culture Paul was speaking in to.

    And I am not talking about homosexuality as sin, I am just letting you know you are quoting scripture incorrectly. You are proof texting!

  • Twisting scriptures is what those who affirm sin must do – they must reinterpret the Bible in post modern terms. But what you are saying, with your twisting and reinterpreting of scripture is no different than what Satan said to Jesus, “If You are the Son of God, throw Yourself down; for it is written, ‘HE WILL COMMAND HIS ANGELS CONCERNING YOU’; and on their hands they will bear you up and you will not strike your foot upon a stone.” It was a lie, a twisting of scripture. It is what you are doing when you tell those to go ahead and sin, because God was not talking about homosexuality when he “suggested” sinners should repent. Instead, he was talking about those judgmental evangelicals, like Bonnie and Sandi. BTW, I have plenty to repent of, so not suggesting I am perfect, but I know the one who is, and I believe his word is the Truth.

  • Thanks for more of the same. Feel free to Bible-thump someplace else. I will not recognize any such quote from the Bible as meaningful, authoritative or relevant by proxy from you.

  • Homosexuals don’t need your condescending pity. Besides, I’m Jewish so I will be in Hell with them because I don’t believe in Jesus. I will be in good company.

  • Both Shannon and Sandi do not understand who the Pharisees really were. They were not trying to control people and they were not petty-fogging hypocrites. They were deeply religious men who were trying to sanctify everyday life. They wanted to democratize Judaism and turn the home into a portable Temple.

  • Afraid to engage in debate with a Christian? Pretty sure your are weak on the intellectual side, but probably have a lot of cliches and liberal memes you can parrot to bully those with whom you don’t agree. You don’t have to agree with me, But, you would do yourself a favor to bone up on your topic before writing something as ridiculous and unsupportable as your original post.

  • You are wrong. I don’t know what else to say, but this clearly refers to homosexuality and I have been in churches a long, long time. Long.

  • This is true and it is because we don’t agree on the basic foundations of our faith and the definition of Truth. The BIble asks if two can walk together unless they agree? The answer, of course, is no. That is why it is fruitless. I just thought I would lend Sandi some support, because she argues with you because she cares about souls going to hell. I, on the other hand,am a Calvinist and believe that God saves whomever he will and nothing I do or say makes any difference.

  • You choose to ignore the clear context of IDOLATRY, Indicated by the crucial words “for THIS cause” “wherefore” or “for this reason.”

    But that’s all right. I’m sure you have plenty of sins to repent of. Misrepresenting the clear word o’ god is probably only one of them.

  • It might refer to heterosexuals engaging in homosexual acts. It doesn’t refer to anything we actually KNOW?

  • Sandi, we agree on most things, except this. Remember, Jacob have I loved, Esau have I hated? God chooses some and not others. It is not for us to know why, or who is chosen. If someone totally rejects God, it is not because you failed, or Shannon convinced them to embrace their sin. It is the will of God. These are the end times, and thus, we will see greater perversions and wickedness, even in the church.

  • Ah, but it is conditional. Here are the conditions> Romans 10:9 “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus ,and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. ”
    Romans 10:10 “For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.”
    Romans 10:11 “For the scripture saith, WHOSOEVER BELIEVETH ON HIM SHALL NOT BE ASHAMED. ”
    Romans 10:13 “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

  • I can always tell the unbelievers because they write god, little g, instead of God. The only God. You don’t know what you are talking about – pretty obvious.

  • Bonnie, at the start, I expected to be disagreeing with you and I’m so thankful that I’m not! Are you a sister in the Lord?
    Until I learn that Christ has forsaken Ben, though, I’ll continue to tell him how the Lord loves Him. I do such for two reasons….one, because Christ does love him and if Ben decides to turn to Him, Christ will not turn him away, John 6:37 – English Standard Version
    All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never cast out.
    and two, for people reading the blog who know, or even don’t know Ben, but need to know that Christ loves them, if they are in his situation which he broadcasts to everyone for prayer for himself, they need to know that Christ loves them also, even if committing the same sin. They need to know they are precious to the Lord also and He desires a personal relationship with them also.
    Thank you for your support. It is appreciated. God bless you.

  • Here is a question for you – why do you care what evangelicals think of the LGBTQs? Don’t go to their churches. Start your own and stay away from those with whom you disagree. What is your goal? I certainly would not go to a church that professed a faith that was counter to what I believed – I wouldn’t join and then agitate to be accepted, though I do not agree at all with their theology. In the USA, at least for now, we have the freedom to worship according to our conscience.

  • It’s because He loves you that His love is conditional. Does someone really love you who would unconditionally love you as you tried to kill yourself?

  • You know Susan, I don’t know a lot about what the Lord intends with the Jewish people – so I won’t be offended, if I am corrected by someone.
    I do know that Israel is God’s people and God is faithful to His promises, even when we aren’t. I know God loves Israel enough that Jesus died for them, but what exactly He has in mind for you, I don’t know.

  • lol…..I don’t know how being divorced makes one an adulterer, but if adulterers don’t repent, accept Jesus as their Lord and Saviour, choose to follow Him, then your wish will come true. They will die the second death. Where do you stand here?

  • Way too late for Sandi. She is certain I don’t really love my wife, because if I did I would not have married her and guaranteed she’d go to hell with me. She has judged me, and damned me to hell while knowing nothing about me, my life, who I am, where I volunteer, what my community thinks and feels about me, all because I am a married lesbian and have been for 42 years. Lesbian that is, married 24 years.

  • Again, Daniel, your focus is defending homosexuality, rather than on what the Lord taught. Where is your scripture? You still provide no scripture, only your opinion. You try to deceive as attempting to appear “taught” by using another language, yet, you don’t even know basic Christianity.

    Mark 12:29 Jesus answered, “The most important is, ‘Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God is one Lord, 30 and you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.’ 31 The second is this: ‘You must love your neighbor as yourself.’ No other commandment is greater than these.”
John 14:15 – “If ye love me, keep my commandments.”

    1 John 5:2 This is how we know that we love the children of God: by loving God and carrying out his commands. 3 In fact, this is love for God: to keep his commands.

    Christ commanded “‘Do not have sexual relations with a man as one does with a woman; that is detestable.” Leviticus 18:22

    No one can be so foolish as to imagine that the Judge of all the Earth will put away our sins if we refuse to put them away ourselves – Spurgeon

  • I cannot agree with you – even moreso…..lol…..I haven’t the faintest idea of what you are trying to say……God bless you Susan.

  • What is Truth, Bonnie?
    This is Truth- that the long-awaited Messiah, our King and Savior Jesus Christ, has come to redeem the cosmos and usher in a kingdom that is like no other… this is Good News! We live in a tension of the already but not yet fully realized kingdom of God and we are called to live the good news until we either go to paradise with Jesus or He returns to fully redeem the heavens and earth.

    I also have been able to walk with many people I don’t agree with and it has been fruitful on both sides.

    I’m sure Sandi appreciates a little support!

    WHAT???? Your a Calvinist?! So what do you have to say about anything God ordains? If a person has been “elected” by God, professes faith in Christ and is in the LGBTQ community, then all your support for Sandi is futile. You can’t undo what God has already done.

  • This portion of scripture actually does not explicitly say anything about homosexuals, if you are inferring that, then you should be cautioned! This scripture talks about acts that were performed for the sake of worship and idolatry, not everyday life, or common household practices of Christians.

    I am reminded when you say you have been in church(es) for a long time of the apostle Paul when he was “trying” to get the Jews, who had been in the temple “a long, long time” to realized the fulfillment of the messiah’s coming and the kingdom of God in Jesus Christ of Nazareth and the Jews were too stuck in their ways to see the Truth (Acts 28:23ff). Sometimes being somewhere for a long time can be a stumbling block.

  • There are a whole bunch of people– Jews, Mormons, SDA, JW’s Muslims, Hindus, buddhists, atheists, sikhs– in fact, about 2/3 of the word– that don’t believe their “lifestyles” are sinful, but they are.

    Do you quote scripture at them, or are you like sandi, and save your righteousness for gay people.

  • Oh, I don’t know. How about the relenting attacks on us, our families, marriages, and participation in society?

    But stay away? And deny you the chance of saving our souls? That’s not very christian.

    But no. I’m an atheist. I don’t care what you believe. I do care about what you do with those beliefs. Which takes us back to paragraph 1?

  • No, it’s more a matter of convenience of capitalization and auto correct on my iPad. And I believe I do, because that Is the context of roman. But if it makes you feel better, please continue to believe I don’t know what I am talking about,.

  • Hey, you know, I am sorry to hear that Sandi has treated you so poorly, in her attempt to “save you from hell.” The sad thing is, I think she really thinks she is displaying the heart of Christ, and that frightens me a bit. The only people Jesus “woed” were the religious leaders and scribes, the ones who thought they had it all together. Peace and grace to you!

  • You might want to read A Life of Unlearning – a Journey to Find the Truth by Anthony Venn-Brown a long-time, well-known and well-regarded Pentecostal pastor in Australia. Because that was kind of his story.

  • You might want to follow up by reading Romans 2. The Bible was never written in chapters or verses.

  • Nope. I am simply tired of hearing the same “gotcha” quotes from the Old and New Testaments by folks who assert that every word of it literally came from Jesus himself, when it clearly did not. I had no use for Bible-thumpers when I was younger, and even less so now. This is as polite as I plan to be about quoting Bible passages to justify hatred and bigotry in the unwilling name of deity. Quoting the Bible to promulgate hate serves the Devil and not Jesus Christ. So, each “gotcha” quote you make is evidence to me that you serve the Devil instead.

  • Yes, floydlee, I do consider that quote to be words of insight and wisdom.
    Re its conclusion, “…and that it is best to name these differences clearly and without acrimony, on the way out the door”:
    I would add “, and for us to humbly own our differences as our own beliefs — the very foundation of faith — rather than as mere facts, which require no faith at all.”

  • I think that is the strategy of many who post here, wherever on the religious or social spectrum they rest.

  • In keeping with the response I just posted to your above reply, I think it’s important not to smother one’s legitimate disagreement with unfounded, hostile claims about another person’s character: in this case, atheism doesn’t imply hatred at all; it simply means unbelief in deity. In contrast, ANTItheism indicates hostility toward others’ religious beliefs — but again, not necessarily hatred toward deity. Personally, I am as opposed to antitheism as I am to any other form of disrespect; and I am as opposed to hatred as I am toward any other form of divisiveness.

  • Christ’s command is Love. John 13:34- Christ said his new command was for us to Love each other. If we Love Christ, we Love one another.

  • I really appreciate that, Ben. Your understanding and compassion are soothing salves to my mind.

  • Actually, they do. They have their own special “translation” that they call the “Queen James Bible” where they insert the words “in the temple of Molech” after the Levitical prohibitions of same-sex behavior. Trying desperately to get to the result you see above.

  • Part of the issue is that conservatives often quote the Bible out of context. For instance, on any particular topic, we should look at at least as many passages as we can on that topic. Doing so, we will often not find the same perspective in every passage. For instance, no passage in the Old Testament prescribes “one man, one woman” marriage, nor does any text in the OT proscribe all sex outside of marriage, even for women.

  • Sorry, Mr. Gushee, but I have absolutely no respect for the Southern Baptist Convention, nor for those who are members of it. Their credibility was destroyed years ago when the fundamentalists took it over. The only good Southern Baptist is a DEAD Southern Baptist…

  • Actually “idolatry” sums up the entire LGBTQxyz movement. In fact the gay pride parades closely resemble the Dyonisa in ancient Athens. Pretty sick stuff. So idolatry is at the very core of your worldview.

  • If you don’t like SB’s don’t become one.

    And so what is your preferred method of “offing” SB’s?

  • I appreciate your stance. On a related issue, American evangelicalism has had an unabated love affair with money and power (unfettered capitalism) for decades. This has contributed to my disinclination to identify as an evangelical (a pejorative term??) for quite a while. I prefer “follower of Christ.”

  • I don’t mind hearing people discuss the Bible, when they do so intelligently. I just get tired of the “Thus saith the Lord GOD” nonsense as if every last homophobe had his or her own personal pocket Jesus to rubber-stamp the hate and bigotry. I grew up Mormon and had to read both the Bible and Book of Mormon cover to cover as a kid. I got endless hours of dogmatic indoctrination on the Mormon view. I did the whole Bible-bash debate thing in high school with every last holy roller fool enough to take me on. I even abandoned my native liberalism to go conservative for a couple decades just to be a “better” Mormon. But none of that made it any better in finding my own peace as a survivor of child abuse.

    It took the journey of my life to realize that I survived because I had a dad who loved me unconditionally and because I was determined to move forward myself in as peaceful and caring a way possible. When I came to realize that I have my own moral compass and that it is independent of the Bible (and/or the Book of Mormon), all tomes of “scripture” simply became cool books of interest, not ironclad boundaries. None of those books help a kid (or adult) come to terms with having a mom who was both brilliant and messed up enough to be a danger to her own children. And it was my own moral compass, not one imposed by “holy books” that allowed me to be a good husband and father, untainted by the abuse I suffered.

    In the end, it came down to having one parent, my dad, who offered unconditional love and the patience to let me become my own man. To that end, I became a teacher and a coach, knowing that just being there and caring genuinely can make a real difference. Bible verses can be fun and instructive, but it’s caring and compassion that matter more. That was Jesus’ real gift.

  • I think I understand her heart quite well, Edward. I’ve met bomb throwers andpassive aggressive personalities like her many, many times.

    She is full of her own superiority, no matter how much she bleats that she is just trying to help, no matter how many lies she tells about gay people, no matter how much she bleats that she is just a humble Jesus lover, trying to help others.

    Not all bigotry is hate, Edward. so much of it is ones wholly unwarranted faith in a completely imaginary superiority as a moral person, a so called Christian, and a human being.

    I’m really surprised you don’t see it. You are neither blind, stupid, nor inexperienced. How many times has she been corrected on her alt facts with real facts, Only to have her basically say “I don’t care.” Not to mention LOL and yawn. I’m not talking about differences in biblical interpretation, but actual FACTS.

    that is not the mark of a caring, aware, compassionate human being. It is the mark of a raging bigot, hiding behind faith and pretending that she and god are in complete agreement.

    It’s called megalomania, and it isn’t pretty.

  • J. Vernon McGee said:

    “We get a warped view of Him when all we hear is, ‘God is love, God is love.’ It is true that God is love, but don’t lose sight of the fact that God is also holy. He is righteous and He will judge. You are not rushing into heaven on the little love boat today. If you reject His salvation, there will be nothing left but judgment.

  • Matthew 19:9English Standard Version (ESV)
    9 And I say to you: whoever divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, AND MARRIES ANOTHER, commits adultery.”
    Thanks, but he said nothing about remarriage hon.

  • Well, let’s talk about the humbly thing. Your definition of “humbly” includes the dictionary definition, but also contains an alien component.

    It goes like “Please don’t affirm and insist that biblical theism, including the exclusivist Jesus claims of John 3:16 and John 14:6, are factually, authortatively true at all times for all people.” (Which means your’s and Ben”s atheisms are wrong and judgeable by God, btw.)

    On gay marriage, it goes like “Please don’t affirm and insist that the Bible’s 100 percent rejection of gay marriage and gay-self-identity is the unavoidable, authoritative Truth for all humans.”

    That’s what “humbly” means to you. Not just to admit one”s own sins, “issues”, and commonalities, and not merely to wash other people’s feet,
    but to DUCK the unavoidable, ultimate biblical truth that God, Jesus,, and the Bible get to outright say and judge which specific beliefs / actions are right or wrong beliefs / actions for any & all of us.

  • Trust and Obey – John H Sammis

    When we walk with the Lord in the light of His Word,
    What a glory He sheds on our way!
    While we do His good will, He abides with us still,
    And with all who will trust and obey

    Refrain:
    Trust and obey, for there’s no other way
    To be happy in Jesus, but to trust and obey.

    Not a shadow can rise, not a cloud in the skies,
    But His smile quickly drives it away;
    Not a doubt or a fear, not a sigh or a tear,
    Can abide while we trust and obey.

    Not a burden we bear, not a sorrow we share,
    But our toil He doth richly repay;
    Not a grief or a loss, not a frown or a cross,
    But is blessed if we trust and obey.

    But we never can prove the delights of His love
    Until all on the altar we lay;
    For the favor He shows, for the joy He bestows,
    Are for them who will trust and obey.

    Then in fellowship sweet we will sit at His feet,
    Or we’ll walk by His side in the way;
    What He says we will do, where He sends we will go;
    Never fear, only trust and obey.

  • Actually, if Evangelicals would actually read Romans 11, they wouldn’t believe that Jews are going to hell. Paul stated that God has NOT rejected the Jews and that God does not regret his call of the Jews. Of course, many Evangelicals will insist that everyone not like them is going to hell.

  • Paul stated in 1 Corinthians 13 that Faith. Hope and Love remain, but the greatest of these is Love. Faith in Greek means to “trust.” It is pisteuo. We obey Christ when we Love our Neighbor. It is faith acting in love.

  • John 14:15 – “If ye love me, keep my commandments.”

    1 John 5:2 This is how we know that we love the children of God: by loving God and carrying out his commands. 3 In fact, this is love for God: to keep his commands.

  • Thank you for being one of the intelligent voices that I like to pay attention to on all things dealing with faith and human rights.

    My dad was a unique person and I won the lottery in being his kid. But he also saw in my mom someone greater than she saw in herself. That also gave me perspective in my own life’s journey. From him, I learned to be calm in an emergency, to have an eye for need in others, to look inside myself for my strength to move forward in life, and to find humor wherever and whenever I can in place of tears.

  • Shannon, thank you. It honestly frightens me a bit. She calls it love, but every word she writes comes out in a tone that say “I’m right in my understanding of the Jesus, the Bible, and everything touching it, you are wrong and going to hell.” She told me in all honesty that with 7 billion people on this planet, only those who believe in Jesus and follows what she thinks he and the Bible teach, are going to heaven. Everyone else is going to hell. No Christians who believe differently than she, they aren’t True Christians. No Hindus, Buddhists, Muslims, Taoists, Shintos, no Native Americans, certainly, or aboriginal tribes, nobody who believes and does anything other than what Sandi Luckins has declared. Then she says she doesn’t declare it, god does. That type od didacticism is frightening. To see her write that if she thought it would get us to heaven, she’d execute us as they are in Chechen, is terrifying.
    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/04/01/world/europe/chechen-authorities-arresting-and-killing-gay-men-russian-paper-says.html?_r=0
    I will never believe in a god who made one religion for 7 billion people, growing up and living in thousands of different cultures with different ways of thinking about god according to how they developed in their part of the world with it’s particular climates and conditions. How could eskimos consider the same god as someone on the equator? God is. Humans know little about that, we’re too busy doing to just sit and be with god. We forget we are human and being. And as our experiences shape our thoughts and perceptions, none of us see or think the same things about anything. We don’t even agree as to what colors we perceive, yet we’re all supposed to perceive god in the same fashion?
    I have told her that she sends more away from Christ than she brings to him, but she doesn’t really seem to care if she bring others to Christ as long as she can continue to judge others and call it love.
    Now, I no longer deal with her. She does not care what LGBTQ people can tell her about our lives, she isn’t interested in our lives, or why we feel as we do. In fact, it seems Sandi thinks all we have are sex lives, she doesn’t seem to know we are real people with husbands, wives, children, parents, siblings, getting along in life. Loving and living the best we know how. We are no different than any other population of people. We are the same mix of good and bad as any population of humans.

  • Thanks for the nice compliment. It is much appreciated.

    My own father was a mixed bag– not a bad guy, but I think very, very unhappy in his marriage. EVentually, it dawned on me that he was an alcoholic. He taught me about rational thinking, keeping commitments, and personal integrity. A lot of his example was negative– I remember thinking as a young man that whatever happened in my life I did not want to grow up to be be my father. In fact, I had a boyfriend once that was so much like my mother– neurotic, anxious, needy, and manipulative– that I broke up with him despite how serious we were getting. I had realized that if I stayed with him, I would be essentially marrying my mother,

    And that would make me my father!
    .

  • Everyone has to both accept and overcome their upbringing to move forward in life. Even the best parents make mistakes, and even the worst parents give us some of the good we take forward. My mom is who actually taught me to read, early childhood education being the focus of her master’s degree. My first grade teacher put me in the lowest, slowest reading group (the all-boy group), and yet I scored a 4th grade reading level on the old Stafford Achievement Test when tested in May, still in the same reading group. My teacher gladly took credit for my achievement, but it was my mom who deserved the praise, even if she sent me to school in long sleeves on hot days to cover bruises she herself gave me. It was my dad who helped me to cherish the good, and forgive the bad.

  • You had a great dad there. And a good mom in her own way. They helped you. But I don’t hear you thanking God for giving them to you.

    And neither one of them will be able to pinch-hit for your soul. They won’t be able to clean up your own personal rejection of God and the Bible, when it’s actually time to stand before God one-on-one.

    Nor will it be possible to hide behind the bad attitudes or misdeeds of Mormons (or even the misdeeds of Christians like myself) on that day.

    We all have a moral compass but we all choose to sin anyway, so a moral compass can’t keep us outta Hell. We really need a Savior, need to get our sins washed off.

  • Even for a gay guy, mom and dad become unconscious role models for future partners. Sexual orientation is just one of the factors in how we find companionship as adults. Our relationships to parents or lack thereof also play an important role, more so, if we are not aware of and have dealt with the ups and downs of our upbringings. You come across as that sort of head-on-straight kind of guy who figured those things out as you came out to yourself. That’s what makes my own gay cousin such a great guide as well. Even if we were both raised Mormon, he’s more or less my unofficial Wiccan shaman in life. His advice has never steered me wrong.

  • Thank you for sharing a personal witness of your beliefs. I share some of those feelings myself, but not all. I believe in Christ but there are things that you feel are sinful that I simply do not. Those things aside, I really like the way you presented your feelings here and now. Thanks again.

  • Bonnie, I must apologize, as I must elaborate a bit further on what Paul’s intentions were in 1:24ff. Paul is making a global statement to everyone about how humanity has fallen away from God and the moral bankruptcy of humankind. He uses sex as an “umbrella term” for the whole fallen nature of the world and the idolatrous nature humanity in general has fallen into.

    I am not making this up to suit anyone’s needs, this is an accurate translation of the text, regardless of the translation. Consult any evangelical commentary and you will see I am not jaded.

    Now, I also would like you to know that I have nothing to do with the LGBTQ community, not intentionally, but just by default, so I have no clue which translations they might use, but I would assume something along the lines of NIV, KJV, ESV, NASB, HCSB, ASB or any current translation.

  • Shawn, that is just rude and dehumanizing. Mind you, I am not part of the LGBTQ community so I am not defensive of a specific side, but that is just snarky and insensitive.

  • Susan, I have never said Pharisees were trying to control anyone! I just said that the Pharisees came across a hypocrites and “holier-than-thou.” Jesus seemed to elaborate on that: Mat 23 “Woe to you Pharisees”

  • Considering James I was himself a homosexual and his posse of translators were too that’s ironic.

  • “Self-righteousness” is not real “righteousness.” You have to be “right” to be “righteous,” and hating others for who they are is never “right.” That’s where the Bible-thumpers always fall short.

  • What’s rude? That’s what it’s called and that’s what they put in it. Look it up.

  • I studied the history of England from 1603 to the present in college and the professor mentioned that business about King James being gay but said that was never anything but rumor. Whether true or not, the translation was done by university scholars, reviewed by bishops of the Church of England, and merely authorized by the king — and I’m quite sure we have no information on the sexual orientation of the translators. And none of it matters anyway, because we have the scriptures in the original Greek and Hebrew and much more accurate translations have been done since James.

  • Idolatry is at the heart of what “sin” itself is. It consists in placing ANYTHING ahead of God in importance — primarily self. There is as much idolatry today as ever there was in ancient times.

  • Then why are you here? This is a conversation about the inclusion of LGBTQ in the mainstream church. If you don’t care, why comment? There are many issues that I do not care about and I never comment, because I believe it is none of my concern. That is how you should think about the subject of inclusion, since you are not a Christian and not seeking to become part of a Christian Church. What I do with my beliefs is none of your business.

  • Well, at the very least you are an apologist for the LGBTQs. Look, if you are a fellow believer and I told you I was in an adulterous relationship, I would hope you would admonish me in love and encourage me to repent. Your argument, at its root, is that homosexuality is not sin.

  • What was rude about refuting that ridiculous claim? And, yes you are part of the community. EIther you or someone you love. Nothing wrong with that, but be honest.

  • Bonnie, I am a female, happily married to the love of my life, a male. I know no one of my friends or family to be part of the LGBTQ community… to be honest.

    And I can’t be part of a community that I don’t commune with, though I would not mind having friends or family in the LGBTQ circle… to be honest.

  • Yes, of course I am a Christian. You are one of the sweet sisters, thinking you will be able to persuade the lost to reconsider and you hurt for those who are in sin. I know many Christian women like you. I have watched as our churches have been decimated by those who come in and then demand we accept – no, affirm – their sin. I can’t be sweet because I worry about my children and grandchildren and what sort of world – worse – what kind of church – we are leaving for them. Gushee is only thinking of himself, and how he can sell a few books. He doesn’t care what sort of world he is leaving for our children. I appreciate Christian women like you who try to beat back the darkness.

  • No, Sandi is carrying out the great commission, to go out into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. Who is and isn’t saved is a matter for God to determine, that doesn’t absolve us of preaching the gospel, so you misunderstand Calvinism.

  • Sandi is not preaching the gospel! She is not carrying out the great commission! She has a strange way of showing that she “cares if souls go to hell.”

    Neither of you know what the gospel is,it is not about personal salvation, but about Jesus! The gospel is what I stated as truth above, if you turn Jesus’ gospel into a me-centric salvation story you undermine the beauty and robust nature of the greatest story and the best news humanity will ever encounter.

    Sorry, the gospel is not about heaven or hell, but about Jesus and the kingdom of God.

    Now, how we choose to respond to the gospel is another story.

    We are called to “turn toward” and “believe”

  • You don’t even begin to understand what Sandi believes. As I said above, she is carrying out the great commission, to preach the gospel to all creatures. To let everyone who hears her know that Jesus Christ died for their sins and that he is the way to salvation. I also know that those who have not experienced this salvation do not have the capacity to understand this. It is like having a veil over your eyes. She pities the lost and hurts for them. .

  • One thought I have is that what the New Testament says about the Pharisees is often inaccurate, BUT what is said about them is CERTAINLY true of many Conservative Christians, who try to use the Bible to condemn other people.

  • If you are going to attack me and mine, honey, you can bet it is my business. If you’re going to use your faith as your “justification” for those attacks, then you have made your faith my business as well.

    The days where gay people hid out to protect the delicate sensibilities of moralizing busybodies are long gone. The days when we just roll over in the face of unrelenting hostility from the holy hypocrites are not coming back until you pry my personal copy of the Homosexual Agenda from my cold, dead hands.

    But just for you, there is THIS.

    From the editorial board of the Kansas City Star:

    Rick Brattin, a Missouri state representative from Harrisonville, seems pretty certain: Homosexuality and humanity are incompatible. “When you look at the tenets of religion, of the Bible, of the Qur’an, of other religions,” he said Monday, “there is a distinction between homosexuality and just being a human being.”

    The statement, made on the Missouri House floor, was deplorable. It betrayed a stunning lack of understanding of theology and self-government: The Constitution protects all Americans from the tyranny of any single faith-based approach to secular law.

    If you have the slightest question as to why I am here, read those paragraphs again.

  • Of course, everything that is counter to your ideas is bigotry and hatred. You don’t understand Christianity, except you know you are against it. You act like this is a gay forum and Christians have invaded it. It is not hate to point out sin – now, if you don’t believe this, that is okay, but you don’t belong in this conversation.

  • “but you don’t belong in this conversation.”

    First and foremost, no one died and made you God, so don’t tell me where you think I belong; it’s not your call.

    Second, I understand Christianity better than you do or you would not be saying what you do or how you say it. Your diatribe is totally a testimony against any claim you might make to “know Jesus.”

    Third, only a homophobic fool would think that the majority of my remarks have been on that one vital topic of how bigoted people like you make it a personal crusade to persecute others.

  • Fine. The prohibition against homosexuality is in the New Testament. Don’t tell me you discovered a new Greek translation that redefines homosexual behavior as sacred.

  • Praise the Lord!
    Nice to meet you, Sister.
    Thank you for your kind words and I so agree with you about the children needing to be protected. They are the next generation to love the Lord.
    In the Spirit of Ephesians 5;11-12, Gushee’s articles display:

    Jude 1:4 – 4 For certain people have crept in unnoticed who long ago were designated for this condemnation, ungodly people, who pervert the grace of our God into sensuality and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ.”
    I had a grandmother who prayed and prayed for me and celebrated when I became saved. May the Lord bless you and your protection of children.

  • Commenting she’d execute us all to save us isn’t love, Bonnie, and if you think it is, you are a sick human being.

  • You have plenty to repent of, indicating that you haven’t yet repented. Yet here you are.

  • amen, Bonnie, but there are people who will be reading this blog, needing to hear the truth, and that’s what I promote. The Lord will change these people if He chooses to, but, there are others reading who need a consistent word of truth.
    You are a very kind person, and I pray that the Lord blesses you. It’s been a pleasure to meet you.

  • You liked that one, here’s another original poem from Dirty Harry

    Oh what fun
    to paint the dun
    a rosy red
    to swell the vein
    upon their head
    to rattle their gourd
    to hit the pipe
    to beat the bushes
    to hunt the snipe
    to tease the dog
    to make a face
    and in a mirror
    make them see
    the howling monkey
    who they be

    [I’m on a roll – suddenly I am writing original and deeply profound poetry – must be the kielbasa the missus fixed tonight] ;-]

  • Shannon, Christ brought the moral laws into the New Testament in Matthew. Homosexuality is still a sin.

  • “Context” has been the latest attempt to confuse people about scripture. God meant what He said and there is no need to reinterpret it for today’s culture – that is a lie from the pit of Hell.

    2 Timothy 3:16New International Version (NIV)

    16 All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness,

  • So you are telling me that my BA in Christian ministry, where context is the key to every biblical interpretation and sermon prep and that my entire seminary education is a lie?!

    WOW!!!!!!!!

  • ” He uses sex as an “umbrella term” for the whole fallen nature of the world and the idolatrous nature humanity in general has fallen into” True, and he specifically uses homosexuality as an example. It is another New Testament confirmation of the Leviticus scripture.

  • A LOT of gay people have actually TRIED to change their feelings and found, even with lots of prayer and psychotherapy that this was absolutely futile. Exodus International started out believing the way you do about homosexuality. They all tried to change and found out that nobody did change their basic attractions from the same gender to the opposite. It is better for a person’s mental health to accept themselves as they are.

  • Homosexuality is idolatry Shannon. This seems to be what you don’t understand.

  • Yes. “context” has become the newest mantra why people divert from scripture. It is an excuse used to twist the scripture from the meaning meant, and nothing more.
    If one were looking at it through actual context, one would see the truth as written. Scripture is not some secret code for us to only understand when we see someone else’s idea of the culture.

  • So are you telling me that my BA in Christian Ministry from a super conservative University were context is key to bible interpretation and sermon prep and all my seminary education is a lie?!

    WOW!!!!!!

  • Don’t believe Sandi- context IS the key to Biblical interpretation. Only uneducated people believe otherwise.

  • That is good. Even conservative scholars I read don’t quote the Bible out of context.

  • No. If you are supporting homosexuality, you are a liar

    “When we become so tolerant that we lead people into mental fog and spiritual darkness, we are not acting like Christians—we are acting like cowards” (A.W. Tozer).

  • I don’t support anything, Sandi! I just don’t hate the way you do. I also see scripture from the lense of love not the lense of condemnation.

    Love is a much more effective tool.

  • Sandi denies that Christ taught us not to judge in Matthew 7. Paul ALSO told us not to judge others beginning in Romans 2 AFTER he quoted what others were saying about idol worship and homosexuality in Romans 1.

  • For the benefit of the audience, remember Paul starts out Romans 2 with “Therefore you have no excuse, whoever you are, when you judge others; for in passing judgment on another you condemn yourself, because you, the judge, are doing the very same things.” For instance, many of this thread condemn gay people for taking a gay identity, saying their faith should be more important. However, it seems like their heterosexual identity is of paramount importance to them, which they place above their faith. They talk about homosexuality being idol worship, whereas there are MANY Biblical examples of Heterosexual marriages being idolatrous, such as Ahab’s heterosexual marriage to Jezebel in 1 Kings 16:31 which completely led him astray into worship of Baal. King Ahab turned out to be the very worst king of the Northern Kingdom of Israel. Remember after Solomon, there was a northern Kingdom of Israel and a southern Kingdom of Judah. When persons on this thread condemn gay people, they actually condemn themselves.

  • And love is telling someone the truth – and particularly on a site of this nature where this may be the only place they learn the truth in this culture. I refer you again to 2 Timothy 3:16-17

  • It isn’t telling Gay people the truth that they deliberately chose their sexual orientation. That is bearing false witness. Christ NEVER talked about sexual orientation. Only acts are addressed in scripture, never orientation.

  • Bonnie, of course the New Testament speaks against homosexuality. It also prohibits remarriage after divorce and says a whole lot of other things that we ignore, like the requirement for women to cover their hair in 1 Corinthians 11.

    When it comes to the New Testament, Christians have long ignored the bits that no longer make sense. Here are a few examples:

    * A belief that epileptics and those with mental illness are possessed by demons even though there are numerous references to demon possession in the New Testament. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demonic_possession#New_Testament
    * A belief that Christians are immune to poisons and venomous snakes (Mark 16:18)
    * A belief in the evil eye (Mark 7:22, King James Version)

    These and other beliefs have passed their use-by dates.

  • I refer you to the last thread on which we spoke extensively and you will learn your error – again.

  • Yes, and I am telling YOU the truth in love. This may be the only place you learn what is true and right and good. Please learn to exegete and hermeneutically apply scripture within context, as every theologian has since the word has been inscribed on papyrus… please!

  • It actually was Shawnie that made me see that Romans 1 is NOT talking about sexual orientation. Shawnie stated that the males gave up the USE of women. It doesn’t say they gave up all DESIRE for women and then just desired men. It could mean they had so much excess desire that they also desired other men.

  • Yet, you mislead people to believe scripture is inaccurate, to pull them away from a truth you have neither confirmed or denied, but sat on the fence. You don’t like the manner I use. That is your option. It does not change the truth of that scripture, which you are trying to call into question.
    Time to try to impress someone else hon.

  • And Daniel tries to change the subject again. Go back and read the thread, my friend.

  • You don’t even know that Jesus is God?
    “BTW- Jesus never calls homosexuality sinful. He calls “sexual immorality” a sin. And please do not lump a diverse and unique group of people under the label of homosexual, it is LGBTQ.”
    I think you missed a few classes.

  • I did not change the subject. You responded to me rebuking you for saying that sexual orientation is a choice. You have always used Romans 1 as an excuse for this erroneous belief. I addressed exactly how you misread Romans 1 to mean that people choose to be Gay in their basic feelings. In NO way did I change the subject.

  • Hey Sandi, I am not here to impress anyone.

    I guess I should ask this: do you believe women should be able to be ordained ministers?

  • You can’t read if you don’t see Matthew 7:1-5 “Do not judge, so that you make you will be judged, and the measure you give will be the measure you get. Why do you see the speck in you neighbor’s eye, but do not notice the log in your own eye? Or how can you say to your neighbor, “let me take the speck out of you eye,” while the log is in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your neighbor’s eye.” How does this plain English say we SHOULD judge others?

  • Jeepers, I just found this one today, and didn’t think I would be able to use it.

    People tell me, judge not lest ye be judged. I always tell them, twist not scripture, lest ye be like Satan. Paul Washer

  • Please do not infer that you have any knowledge of my relationship with Jesus, or who he is, that is stepping over the line. You have no clue who I am or where my heart is at. You are going for low blows, someone who is trying to hurt me. I’m not drinking your kool aid, Sandi.

    You are so off the mark, you have no clue.

  • Why are you so mean? What happened to you in your life that you feel you have to put people down?

  • If context changes the meaning of scripture, it is not “context”. It is just another lie.

  • “If you are changing scripture using the excuse of “context”; yes. Context would enhance scripture, not detract from it.

  • Don’t take it personally- I know that can be difficult with her. Sandi speaks that way to anyone who disagrees with her. I sometimes have taken it personally, but we must remember that we are beloved children of God, no matter what Sandi says.

  • You made the comment. Correct my misinterpretation then. (edit) Christ taught that homosexuality is a sin.

  • I guess you would say if the context enhances the marginalization of an entire group of people, then that would be a good use of it. What about the context of God being on the side of the downtrodden and oppressed?

  • What happened to you in life that you need to lie to people and mislead those who need our help the most? Christ taught that homosexuality is a sin from the Book of Genesis to the Book of Revelation.

  • UGH! Well then… I am done here! Be well Daniel! Blessing and continued grace as you seek the truth and love of our God and the obedience to our King and Savior Jesus Christ!

  • I just realized that you are a dinosaur, so, not contending with you… you have no understanding of what the “living word” is. Something that lives changes!

    You believe women have no place in the pulpit, and with that, I will bid you my farewell and pray for continued grace as you seek and serve Jesus

  • Blessings to you as well. I continue to “dialogue” with Sandi because I am trying to protect the general public against her harmful message that Gay people in their core being are evil. This leads people to commit suicide and it incites violence against gay people. I don’t hope to convince her of anything. I just want to “contain” her ideas to her.

  • I think what you are doing it so important. Maybe you will see me back some day. I pray for stamina and perseverance for you… keep up the good work!

  • I understand that not everyone has the emotional fortitude to deal with abusive remarks. I wasn’t always able to do this.

  • No, I can spar all day long. i just have kids and seminary work that I have to get done! 🙂
    Priorities!

  • Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever. Perhaps the problem is not His?Revelation 2:20 International Standard Version (ISV)
    20 But I have this against you: You tolerate that woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophet and who teaches and leads my servants to practice immorality and to eat food sacrificed to idols.

  • This CAN take up a lot of time. I actually need to be preparing for my Sunday School lesson on “Heaven.” I will talk about heaven as part of creation, then Resurrection, then some of the images of Heaven in the Bible, such as the New Jerusalem as well as Paradise.

  • Sweet! Have you ever checked out Scot McKnight’s book The Heaven Promise? Really accessible and does a nice job of give the biblical interpretation of what heaven is and is not and what it will be. Great little book, I highly recommend it if you haven’t read it, don’t know if you are familiar with his work.

  • Jezebel’s heterosexual marriage to Ahab in 1 Kings 16:31 led Ahab into being the worst king of the Northern Kingdom of Israel. Jezebel has NOTHING to do with homosexuality.

  • But I say to you that anyone who divorces his wife, except on the ground of unchastity, causes her to commit adultery; and whoever marries a divorced woman commits adultery. – that reads like remarriage to me.

  • I would tend to think that the New Testament speaks against homosexuality only WHEN it is compounded by other sins, such as idol worship. Clearly Romans 1 is first and foremost speaking of idol worship. Even Heterosexual marriages are strongly condemned when combined with Idol worship, such as in Deuteronomy 13:6-9 and 1 Kings 16:31. That is why the Israelites were forbidden to marry women from idolatrous nations- it could lead them into idol worship.

  • Just as I said. thanks
    He said nothing about remarriage: Leviticus decrees that all adulterers (that would include the divorced) MUST be put to death. Get busy with that and leave gay people for later.”

  • Perhaps you don’t understand the definition of remarriage is which would explain how you apparently misunderstood the relationship between divorced and adultery. Presumably, this is why Catholics get marriages annulled.

  • Perhaps you failed to understand my comment, so I helped you and quoted the person. Blessings honey.

  • Perhaps read the second above response if you don’t want to read Romans 2. This comment was in response to your 1 Romans citation many exchanges above.

  • The Bible Unearthed by Tel Aviv archaeologist Israel Finkelstein pulls the rug out from all religious claims that “God” hates LGBQ and commands their death. Finkelstein and historian Neil Asher Silberman document that King Josiah and his priests created their laws based on this cult-creating ideology: “If they do it; we don’t.” That is how the hatred came into both Judaism, fundamentalist Christianity and American culture. IF their neighbors accepted LGBQ, then the new regime in 7th century BCE Judah didn’t. [Israel no longer existed at this point in time.] Finkelstein and Silberman conclude —- based on scientific research —- that the Torah and its stories and laws were propaganda that supported Josiah’s political agenda which was to extend his control from the Euphrates to the Nile. Thus, he created a war god named Yahweh with laws intended to control his victims in Judah while isolating them from their neighbors and creating fear, hatred, etc. that could then be used to manipulate them into war. Deuteronomy makes this formula clear: demonize Judah’s neighbors by comparing them to the cultic laws which they will always fail; justify war against them based on their so-called lawless ungodliness; kill them all while showing no mercy for women, children and infants; spare only the young virgins; claim their land, cisterns, homes, harvests for Josiah and Yahweh. Propaganda —- war propaganda —- believed to be “god’s holy word” —- is how the hatred started and what fuels it. Telling the truth about who Yahweh really was is the door out of this hell of hatred against innocent people —- who are victims of ancient war propaganda!

  • In a world full of spurious and conflicting sources, it is truly difficult to be able prove factually much of the information that comes to us. Few of us are without bias, and we often choose the sources that support our point of view, and error is inevitable. LOl and Yawn are other considerations, but in that respect, again, she differs little from many posters on this site regardless of point of view. Sandi is bold in her declarations, but I can’t honestly believe it is framed by bigotry, but a conviction of the spirit. Not everyone is a fluid or nuanced communicator, but that lack is not proof of bigotry. Without any malice, we will have to disagree as to the nature of Sandi’s heart.

  • I know this is a belated response, but I read 1 Corinthians 10:13 but I DON’T see WHERE it says that God removes ALL temptation from our lives. It seems to say that God helps us to bear with our temptation. Paul prayed that the thorn in this flesh would be removed in 2 Corinthians 12:8, but just praying didn’t remove it, because the Lord didn’t choose to remove it. Paul stated that temptations can make a person stronger, so why would God remove all of them? The word temptation or πειρασμος can mean a test that GOD has actually placed someone under. Job was put to the test, of course with Satan’s help. Satan in Job was like a prosecuting Attorney.

  • My comment was directed to you and Sandi both. The Pharisees were not hypocritices nor were thy holier than thou. They were deeply religious men. They were scholars and many of them were mystics too. Their depiction in the “New Testament is just plain wrong. The “New Testament is largely a polemic to prove the moral superiority of Christianity over Judaism.

  • Edward, here I must disagree with you. It’s not a question about different viewpoints, but actual facts, available to anyone with the slightest desire to uncover them. You are mistaking her religious zeal for actually caring about truth and justice.

    Last week, she was going on about the Regnerus study. I gave her an exact quote where regnerus stated he didn’t study what he claimed to study. Her response was that it didn’t matter. HIs “study” conclusions still stood.

    Of course this is bigotry, and of the worst sort. It is about nothing BUT malice with her, despite her Suzy Sunshine persona.

  • Dear Christian Bonnie,

    I think you have started a new tradition. Here is your Good Christian Attack of the day on Gay people. enjoy.

    The San Luis Obispo Tribune reports:

    A San Luis Obispo High School teacher has resigned in the face of widespread outrage over a letter he wrote to the school student newspaper that cited a Biblical passage saying those who commit homosexual acts “deserve to die.”

    Special education teacher Michael Stack did not show up to work Thursday but sent the school an email at 1:07 p.m., which he also copied to Fox News, tendering his resignation, noting “the community apparently wants me out, so I hereby grant them their desires.”

    In his resignation letter, which the district provided to The Tribune, Stack defended his right to free speech, saying, “I exercised my First Amendment rights and submitted my opinion to a public forum.”

    —-

    back to me

    He certainly did have a first amendment right to tell his students they deserve to die. He even has the right to tell them he’s a good Christian while doing it.

    And they had the right to call him a total a-hole, and show him the door.

  • Please don’t be “done here.” There is a lot for committed Christians of the decent sort to do.

    What I wouldn’t do is get into protracted argument with a raging bigot. It’s like mud wrestling with a pig. You get dirty, and the pig loves it.

  • In the Talmud the rabbis decided that to be put to death for adultery one had to be warned just before the act was committed and there had to be a witness. Since people are unlikely to commit adultery with a witness around almost no one ended up being executed for adultery.

  • It doesn’t have to be that way. I know people of all religions who are better people because of their religion and they don’t seek sovereignty over anybody.

  • David Gushee praises Jen Hatmaker and her change to the view he now holds. But should Jen
    and Brandon Hatmaker have first submitted their changing (and now changed) opinions to those with whom they disagree? Certainly! For their changed view, in its totality, is clearly heretical.

    One journalist claims that “[Jen] Hatmaker did not deny a line in the Apostles Creed”. This creed begins, “I believe in God the Father Almighty, maker of heaven and earth; And in Jesus Christ his only Son our Lord…I believe in the Holy Spirit…” But is the Gushee/Hatmaker god the God of this creed and the God of the Bible?

    According to Brandon,

    “Every verse in the Bible that is used to condemn a ‘homosexual’ act is written in the context of rape, prostitution, idolatry, pederasty, military dominance, an affair, or adultery. It was always a destructive act. It was always a sin committed against a person. And each type of sexual interaction listed was an
    abuse of God’s gift of sex and completely against his dream for marriage to be a lifelong commitment of two individuals increasingly and completely giving themselves to one another as Christ did for the church…”

    https://www.facebook.com/HatmakerBrandon/posts/661677820673474

  • Heretic! — the favorite charge of those who have assured themselves of their own orthodoxy, yet have nothing actually to say.

  • My “doneness” was more about focusing on priorities.

    I am strangely learning how to tolerate Christ followers who bash and box people into categories. I know the love of Christ and its richness, I know the hope and joy found in a God who is love. I also know that this God does call us to a life that journeys toward sanctification.

    I am a mess of a person, and I know God has my back and Jesus is my brother, savior and king. I wont be done, Ben, I love humanity too much to ever be done.

    Thanks for the encouragement!

  • My pleasure, and Good for you.

    I sincerely doubt that you are a mess of person. I read goodness and striving towards goodness.

  • No Jew reads the Hebrew Bible by itself. We have centuries of commentaries and MIdrash that interpret the Bible. If you are not aware of these commentaries, Even the most Ultra-Orthodox Jews are not fundamentaliists. They don’t read the Bible literally. For example, the rabbis made it virtually impossible to ever execute anyone for anything. You needed to have to witnesses to a murder which isn’t very likely. They put further restrictions on the death penalty as welll.

  • Pope Francis has stated that Roman Catholics should not try to convert Jews, but most evangelical leaders don’t agree with this.

  • I don’t agree with the pope. I would gladly at any time, help you, if you ever decide you would like to convert because I truly don’t know what will happen to you when the Lord returns.
    Jesus taught: John 14:6English Standard Version (ESV)
    6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”
    So, with that said, I would like to know you were on a journey toward Heaven. If you are ever interested, please contact me. Blessings.

  • Christians have always had excuses to justify hating someone or something. There are scriptures that clearly state that two races shouldn’t marry, that women should keep their mouths shut and cannot preach or teach, that it’s okay to hit your kid with a rod, that men can have two or more wives, that we shouldn’t associate with people of another race, women can’t work outside of the home, and the list goes on and on and on. However, these are only words if you cannot discern what’s in your heart and admit that you are ignorant. Everyone is ignorant in some form or another. But admitting is the first step to learning. Learn from history. Christians have done so many evil things in the name of religious arrogance. We can always pull up something to justify our ignorance, fear and hate of something, can’t we? How about just admit you don’t know everything, you’re not God and you are not in charge of the universe?

  • Do you ever think that you are wrong? No, that’s your problem. We should make adultery illegal since that is much more rampant in this society than anything else. Why aren’t you doing something about it? Talk to your Congress people! It’s a sin! Make it illegal! All adulterers are going to hell. That’s what the bible says.

  • FYI: YOU also have YOUR own version of the Bible. Who died and made you God? You are preaching only a tiny portion of the Bible. Have YOU repented of ALL of your sins, every last one? And have YOU stopped sinning 100 PERCENT, never to sin again? No, you haven’t, have you? If you say you have, you lie. It’s impossible to answers yes to that question without being a liar.

  • Being in a church does not make one a Christian, just as being in a garage does not make one a car.

  • Why do YOU care what LGBTQs think about evangelicals? You are doing the exact thing that you speak out against. Agitating others. You say we have the freedom to worship, but why do you troll this site? Don’t visit their websites. Don’t post comments. SMH.

  • What you do with your beliefs is also none of anyone else’s business. Therefore, get your nose OUT where it doesn’t belong. It is none of your concern here as well. Wow, hypocrite. Let me help you take the telephone pole out of your eye. Hold on first, I need to take the toothpick out of mine so I can see better to help you. ROFL

  • You know, I’d take you people more seriously if your anti-LGBT actions were confined to the four walls of your church. However, I can’t, because you and yours are always trying to impose your religious beliefs on the rest of the public. Here’s a regular example: A city tries to pass an ordinance regarding discrimination in housing and employment against LGBT people. The people who show up to speak against it are inevitably evangelicals who think that they should be able to discriminate against LGBT persons.

    Now, this is the deal. When we are talking about housing and employment, we are talking about basic life functions. How are you to survive without employment and without a place to live? Yet evangelicals regularly say that LGBT people are not deserving as the same rights as straight people to housing and employment.

    Right now, the legislature of the state of Texas is on the cusp of repealing every anti-discrimination ordinance passed by cities in the state because of anti-LGBT animus. And yet again, evangelicals are urging the legislature to do this. It’s all about hurting those you hate. And Jesus told you to love your enemies. Denying people a job and a place to live is not love. It’s hate.

    That’s what you people need to confront.

    Signed, 56 YO single straight female tired of the evil in the name of God.

  • I am often wrong. God is not. You have twisted the scriptures to prove that there is nothing is wrong with your lifestyle, yet the Bible and history is against you. Rampant homosexuality is always a sign of a decaying civilization.

  • And what does the Gushee/ Hatmaker theology tell us about their god? Through his omniscience, he knew everything about homosexuality–about its normality and goodness and its committed, holy, loving relationships. However, he, through his almighty power, chose to inspire in his bible everything bad and nothing good about homosexuality, or about gay relationships. This negative Biblical record left the erroneous impression in the minds of Jews and Christians, for some 2000 years, that their God saw only negativity in homosexuality. The preaching of the Gushee/Hatmaker god’s “bible truth” has been disastrous.

    Jen says: “So great has our condemnation and exclusion been, that gay Christian teens are SEVEN TIMES more likely to commit suicide…” And their god is directly responsible for these suicides because he has never spoken in an unequivocally positive way about homosexuality.

    The Hatmakers claim, in 2016, that they spent two years studying various books, in the context of the counsel of others. This would put the commencement of these studies in 2014. But Jen’s blog tells a different story; she had made her decision on this subject at least two years before.

    On July 27, 2012, Jen reveals, “I hate the culture wars on both sides of the party line…Sick of majoring on gay marriage…you are telling my gay friends they are indeed unwelcome, unloved…How are these culture wars working out for us? Well, the church is losing around 50K folks a week, and the next generation downright refuses to come. The gay community is ostracized entirely… and Christianity has turned into white noise.”

    But in Jen’s basement, “Gay friends and family, you are welcome down here.” Jen then chooses to quote from the comments on her first “basement” post. One claims, “There are a number of things in the Biblical moral code that people no longer consider ‘sin.’ Christians get tattoos. Women not only speak in church, but they are even ordained as pastors in many churches. Christians universally stand up against human slavery. Women can have short hair and men can have long hair, etc. But all of these were prohibited in the New Testament! If you take the very few passages about homosexuality in their historical contexts and original languages, they’re far less ‘black and white’ than we think. Pro-gay Christians have many valid arguments. A nuanced approach to the Bible will reveal that the issue isn’t so cut and dry.” Jen and Brandon feel the same way as the above commenter.

    Their god also failed to mention in his bible that he made people with same-sex desires. He also left them in a state of physical and mental contradiction. For when two men have sex together, their bodies respond in a way that is fine-tuned to get a woman pregnant. When two women have sex, their bodies respond in a way that is fine-tuned to help a man get them pregnant. All this is determined by their god-given DNA. And their god gave many of these men a desire to use sexually the intestine–which is fine-tuned to absorb what is put in it, even diseased semen. This desire has largely given the U.S. the plague of AIDS and the great number of STDs in the gay male community. Furthermore, the Gushee/Hatmaker god gave gay men the desire to donate their AIDS-contaminated blood–which has resulted in the deaths of thousands of hemophiliacs and people receiving transfusions. This god also gave lesbians less desire to get pregnant, resulting in more than double the breast cancer rate of other women.

    The Gushee/Hatmaker god is a bumbling, bungling buffoon who has visited untold misery upon the world through his mishandling of the “gay” situation. Surely, he is not “God the Father Almighty, maker of heaven and earth”.

    After Jen’s books were withdrawn from sale in some Christian bookstores, she claims, “The Christian Machine malfunctioned, and we are all still staring at each other, trying our damnedest to figure out how we understand the gospel so differently…” It is because the Hatmakers and their ilk worship a different god from the God of the Bible.

  • Standard answer to Christians – everyone has a right to their opinion except you. Do you work or go to school or do anything useful?

  • Paul stated that we ALL sin. He didn’t say ONE group intrinsically sins more than another group. When we condemn another group, we condemn our own group. (Romans 2:1) A LOT of the problems in our society ARE caused by Heterosexuals. You are using Gay people as scapegoats for your own sins.

  • Let’s hope you are right, because I do hope there are a lot of gay people, so it would be difficult not to know one of us.

  • “Jews for Jesus” reminds me a LOT of Exodus International. In one case, “Jews” are used to convert Jews. In another case, so called “ex” gays are used to “convert” or shame Gays. Both groups are absolutely despicable. Luckily Exodus International has disappeared. Also, many so called “Messianic Jews” are virulently anti Gay. Micheal Brown claims to be a Jewish follower of Jesus. But he says that Jews will burn in hell because they do not accept Jesus as the Messiah. And he really does hate Gay people. I would not consider him to be either Jewish or Christian at all. He should be disowned by both religions.

  • Nothing happened that was supposed to happen when the Messiah came. That’s why Jews didn’t accept Jesus. They were not too stuck to see the truth, they saw the truth clearly.

  • I agree. In the Philadelphia area the creator of the local “Jews for Jesus” was not Jewish. He converted to Judaism under false pretences and changed his name to a Jewish sounding name. His son has now taken over the organization.

  • No, I will never decide to convert. Spare me your condescending pity. Don’t quote the “New Testament” at me. I don’t accept it as a sacred scripture. I think it is hateful to Jews and Judaism. It roils my stomach to read it.

  • I am NOT asking that you convert to Christianity or accept the New Testament as sacred scripture. The New Testament would be hateful towards Jews if one takes a literal interpretation. You did allude to the Rabbis not taking the Bible literally. There are actually hints in the New Testament that the Romans killed Jesus. Perhaps the Romans weren’t blamed explicitly, because the early Church didn’t want to sound like a threat to the empire and get persecuted more. The book of Daniel similarly speaks cryptically of who the true enemies of the Jews were. One very plausible Jewish objection to the New Testament is on the Messiahship of Jesus. Jesus failed to return, so therefore he is not the Jewish Messiah. The New Testament doesn’t actually claim that we ARE living in the Messianic age.

  • You may call me Ben, but then you wouldn’t able to show contempt by your reference to gay pat– whatever that means. So, one point is proven. This isn’t about your religious belief.

    As for what it has to do with anything look at the posting above that refers to “unrelenting attacks on us, ourfamilies, and our participation in society.”

    And then go look in a mirror.

    But since you asked, here’s the next attack. File under “let’s bring our religion into the workplace and create hostile work environments for gay people.”

    Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue, who as Georgia governor once held a public prayer vigil for rain, has responded to Trump’s recent religious liberty executive order by issuing a letter authorizing USDA-inspected plants to post any anti-LGBT materials they like.

    Perdue’s edict likely arises from the case of the West Michigan Beef Company, whose CEO Don Vander Boon reacted to the 2015 Obergefell ruling by placing an anti-LGBT screed in his employees’ break room.

    Titled “10 Reasons Why Homosexual ‘Marriage’ Is Always Harmful And Must Be Opposed,” the rant was authored by the viciously anti-LGBT red-caped Catholic loons of Tradition, Family, & Property.

    ——–

    if you want, I am keep posting one every day, because barely a day goes by when one of you so called Christians doesn’t figure out a way to attack us, but with the love of Jesus, of course.

  • My comments were directed to Sandi. I know that Christians believe in a second coming, but I’m not sure where that comes from. That’s the excuse why Jesus didn’t bring about a Messianic Age.

  • If she thinks she showing love, she isn’t. if she thinks she’s bringing gay people to Christ, she’s wrong, she pushes us further away. Nothing she has ever written to me, or that I have read her write to other LGBT people, has ever shown any love, compassion, or understanding of the incredible sacrifice she expects LGBT people to make. She treats all of us who admit we are gay or lesbian with nothing more than “you are going to hell.” And when asked about whether or not she approves of hat is happening in Chechen she said if it would help get us to heaven, she’s all for executing us.

    All of that makes me unsure there is a compassionate heart there.

  • The rabbis would have said that they were searching out the true meaning of the Hebrew Bible passages. There are many levels of interpretation of the Bible on its literal meaning it just the first and most basic.

  • Please don’t be done. We need committed, loving, honest, Christians who are willing to look at the world with love rather than condemnation, and do as Christ did, as find the good wherever it resides, in people of all kinds.

  • Impressed far more than Daniel, and will bring many more to Jesus than you ever will.

  • Pretty silly stuff. Bible belieiving christians don’t worship the god of the Bible, just the one they created in their own image.

    Heterosexuals getting divorced for any reason but adultery? Well, that gets a resounding tsk-tsk aimed in their general direction.

    Not slaying the unbelievers in their midst. Well, surely, god didn’t mean that. It would be so impolite.

    The reviling and slander so often directed at gay people, not to mention the ignorance you display about gay sexuality? Well, hey. It’s just sincere religious belief. So what if it looks like hate, stupidity and ignorance.

    Antisemitism, beginnning in Acts, right through John, and right down to the murder of 6 million Jews by Christian Germany? Well, oops.

    And on and on and on and on and on, through every atrocities committed against their fellow humans and declared perfectly fine alrighty because GAWD said so– allegedly.

    Here’s the reality. People like the hatmakers don’t change their minds about gay people and their place in religious life because of your silly reasons, let alone despite what their bibles tell them. It is because of WHAT their bibles tell them.

  • And there you go, reviling and slandering and pretending you know something. There is not a serious historian in the world who would agree with that statement, though there are quite a few propagandists who would.

    Rome fell 150 years AFTER Constantine handed it over to its new Christian masters, then hightailed it over to New Rome, Which persisted another 900 years…

    Until it was seriously weakened by the CATHOLIC attacks of the Crusades.

    Read a book, lady. Or don’t.

  • The messiah was never supposed to return, that was the Christian addition to the Jewis anointed one, which is all messiah means.

  • I was trying to be polite to Edward, who I think intends well. But I personally think Sandi’s heart is open to very, very few, and I don’t think she herself is among them.

  • I know that the Jews didn’t expect the Messiah to “return.” But the hope in his “return,” was that he would do more closely what the Jews expected the Messiah to do, such as bring world peace, and restore the Kingdom to Israel. The early Church expected this to happen at any time, but it still hasn’t materialized.

  • I did indeed find several articles on the subject, and it seems reasonably evident that the methodology used in Mr. Regnerus’ study was deeply flawed.

  • I’m not sure someone would be affraid to tell me thinking I would be judgmental. If someone I am close to is gay and not telling me it would be because they aren’t comfortable with their sexuality. I know many gay folks, and am friendly with them, just not any in my close circle.

  • That is what I have been trying to convey to Sandi. She seems to think the ONLY meaning of texts is the literal meaning.

  • Thank you, Edward. DEeply flawed doesn’t even begin to cover the lies, the deception, and the EVIL INTENT.

    the Regnerus Study was bought and paid for by the Christian Right Sutherland Institute. Robert George was a big player in this– the ultra right, ALWAYS right, good Catholic that he is. They were desperate to stop gay marriage, and in Regnerus himself they found the perfect and willing tool.

    Did you see the articles wherein he ADMITTED that he had not studied what he had claimed to study when he did his work?

    But I don’t really care about that lying hypocrite, or Robert George. MY point was about Sandimonious. I gave her exactly the same information I gave you, as I have done EVERY SINGLE TIME she has presented her “research.” SHE DOESNT CARE. Because this isn’t about Jesus, or faith, or love, or any of it…

    …Like so many of the people who claim to be Christians, and hide their antigay bigotry behind their religious faith. It is about what it is always about– how much the very thought that gay people exist, and live our lives no longer asking their permission to do so, offends them Mightily,

  • And with all respect to your Christian faith– and I mean that seriously– he isn’t going to be coming back. Jesus himself allegedly said he would return while those before him still were breathing. He didn’t. That’s not the issue for me, and I have no problem with the faith itself. It’s what people do with it that is always at issue for me.

    It’s why I can enojy the company of liberal Christians, but don’t care at all for the dominionists that infest conservative Christianity.

    My reading of history was that Jesus was both priest from his mother and king from his father. The two were inextricably linked in ancient Palestine. He did not produce what he promised. All of the son of god stuff came well after he had died, and was a product of Paul. I’ve always found it interesting that he was completely unaware of the magic and miracles of the gospels.

  • I believe as well that Edward is a good man, and wants to do good, though we disagree about his faith. It is why I am always polite and respectful to him.

  • I don’t expect the second coming or the parousia to happen, either. There could be an allegorical understanding of it, however.

  • You realize that the word for abomination used in these verses is the same word used in reference to eating shell fish, wearing clothes made of two different materials, and eating a cheeseburger? The very fact that you quote those verses illustrate what the original author states: “I now believe that incommensurable differences in understanding the very
    meaning of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, the interpretation of the Bible,
    and the sources and methods of moral discernment, separate many of us
    from our former brethren — and that it is best to name these differences
    clearly and without acrimony.”

    We argue intensely about the meaning of these verses that appear (in our english translations) to prohibit certain behaviors while ignoring the words of Jesus that command other mindsets and behaviors.

  • Have you looked at the Greek texts of those verses Bonnie? They do not mean what you assume them to mean. Have you looked at the population that text was written to and the circumstances of that writing? It may be a good idea before you hurt yourself jumping to conclusions.

  • And that illustrates the heart of the problem. Too many people interpret Biblical texts in light of what they think they mean. That is the work of Satan. Shannon is perfectly correct and this has been acknowledged by scriptural scholars for ages. To carry this one step further, you might want to look up the two words that Paul uses for homosexual. One is difficult if not impossible to accurately translate because that word occurs nowhere else in Greek literature. It is a word that Paul constructed that must have had meaning to that community. The other word referred, in contemporary texts, to a wide range of sexual immorality but more specifically to temple prostitution. There is every reason to believe that Paul was addressing public sexual behavior, in the context of worship services, that were a holdover from their pagan life and NOT what goes on behind closed doors.

  • He specifically uses the public sexual behavior of male temple prostitutes.

  • Whether the same word is used in different places, or not, does not take from the seriousness of the sin.

  • She is demonstrating the difference between eisogesis (reading meaning into a text) and exogesis (extracing meaning from the text)

  • The length of time that you have been in churches is quite irrelevant. Evangelical churches have been teaching this propaganda from the time they began so it’s no surprise that that is all that you have heard.

  • Actually, it’s more about the exclusion (by history) of the homosexual person from the evangelical churches. That’s the context for an argument for inclusion.

  • no it won’t Daulphin. If she is advocating that homosexuality is not a sin, she is not leading people to the truth of Christ and without that, they can have no relationship with Him. She endorses a false god.

  • If you have not read the Greek version of the texts and understood what you read you also are inserting context into your understanding of what you read. That context, is that which you have been taught to believe.

  • Where? could you give the verse? In no version of the Bible that I have seen is Jesus cited as using the word “homosexual.”

  • what you are doing is telling your interpretation of the truth. And that is so very different from the One who is the Way, the Truth, and the Life.

  • Why does He need to use the word “homosexual”?

    Leviticus 18:22 – 22 You shall not lie with a male as with a woman. It is an abomination.

    Leviticus 20:13 – If a man lies with a male as he lies with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination. They shall surely be put to death. Their blood shall be upon them.

  • So, what you are saying is that the “sin” of homosexuality is no different from the “sin” of eating a cheeseburger?

  • No….the “context” they are pushing is the culture. Well, people much closer to the culture interpreted the scripture the same way we do today, so someone is wrong, and I am more inclined to believe people wanting to change the scripture are wrong. There are no “new” interpretations. That is baloney and a pro-homosexuality agenda. nothing more.

  • Why? Because you made the assertion that he used that word. Moses wrote leviticus. You were going to show us where Jesus is quoted as using the word homosexual.

  • The culture that “they” are pushing is the culture of society at the time the texts of the Bible were written. Or is the culture that you are embedded in more important that that of Paul and Jesus? Unless you are fluent in Koine Greek, you are not in a position to know if scripture has been “changed.”

  • I have never heard of that. Could you please provide the publishing information.

  • so you say.
    and sadly, you believe it.

    Sandi, why do you gravitate toward these articles?

  • And I disagree, with you Sandi, and always will. She is bringing people to Jesus, you are sending them away. It’s that simple. The only people you teat with any kindness or consideration are people you know agree with you fully. Anyone else is the enemy to you until you as sure they agree with you. Shannon doesn’t agree with my lesbianism anymore than you do. She doesn’t treat me, or my thought about my own life experiences, and experiences of god as if they are pointless, lies and of no value, because you disagree that it is possible for a lesbian to be in good standing with god.
    As my mother told us as kids: “It isn’t what you say,its the way that you say it.” And you say it unkindly, wit seemingly great relish in the condemnation. You claim you w ant to love and save us, but Neve once have you listened or actually heard what any of us have to say. We are all prejudged by you, and your replies are mean, tactless, and unkind from the very first interaction with an LGBT poster. You don’t even try honey, you start at burn in hell.
    It is sad that you don’t see that your didactic manner and lack of humility around your own beliefs, your adamant and harsh comments, and your insistence that only your opinions of bible, though billions disagree with you is correct, send people away from even being willing to explore your faith. Shannon at least gets people in the door, where they may become Christian. You send them running before the ever pick up the book, thinking, “Anyone that who treats people who disagree with her that badly, is no one I choose to emulate.”
    Or, you simply reaffirm, for those of us who have studied, the rightness of our choice to leave Christians to their own messes, doctrinal divisions, hatreds, and calling each other “not a True Christian” when they disagree with each other.

  • I don’t have to show humility for Christ’s word hon. Homosexuality is a sin and it sends people to Hell. More agree with my opinions than you can imagine hon.

  • My motivations do not change the fact that Christ taught that homosexuality is a sin.

  • “The culture that “they” are pushing is the culture of society at the time the texts of the Bible were written.” Exactly, so, as we get further and further away from that “culture” we get a better understanding than those who lived it? The “culture” defence is baloney.

  • You have no humility. You are arrogant in your beliefs. You have no self awareness that you may be wrong. That is sad. And it turns people away, it doesn’t invite them in.
    And while you are surrounded by people who agree with you, you are still a very small minority of this country. So you think there are more people who agree with you than do. According to Gallup 9which leans slightly conservative in it’s polling) at this point over 68% of the U.S. population believes LGBT people have a right to a legal relationship.

  • Nope, just confident in Christ.
    Also, the amount of people endorsing homosexuality has no bearing on the fact that homosexuality is a sin.

  • Again, no self awareness of how you come across to the world. No humility, no kindness, no caring, nothing at all christ like about your behavior.

  • But your motivations are relevant to why you follow these articles.

  • There’s a slight problem if you are not aware of which texts you are citing.

  • No, actually, the further away in time that we get from that culture, the less we know of it and the more we filter what we believe through the lens of our own culture. That is why it is so important to set aside what we think we know make a conscious effort to understand the context and culture in which the Bible was written.

  • I have. Numerous times. But the real question is, why? St. Paul tells us that if we are to follow one part of the law we are obliged to follow ALL of it. That includes no lobster, no cheeseburgers, none of the clothing that you are most likely wearing. No having sex with your husband unless you have ritually purified yourself after your menses. St. Paul reminds us that the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus has set us free from the law and all it’s power.

  • You have been deluded and believe a lie. The meaning is not hidden. Homosexuality is a sin, however, the homosexual can repent just like any other sinner. The problem comes when we, in the church, are asked to embrace their sin, to accept it and even affirm it.

  • Exodus 23:19
    English Standard Version
    “The best of the firstfruits of your ground you shall bring into the house of the LORD your God. “You shall not boil a young goat in its mother’s milk.

    Exodus 34:26 – English Standard Version
    The best of the firstfruits of your ground you shall bring to the house of the LORD your God. You shall not boil a young goat in its mother’s milk.”

    So what is your point?

  • Then I suggest you read it again. Pay particular attention to 18:1-6.

    You are trying to say that the Law has been disposed of. Christ came not to abolish the Law, but to fulfill the Law.
    Matthew 5:17 English Standard Version
    “Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them.

    Christ thought enough about sin that He died because of it. Are you attempting to say that sin – as defined by the Law – does not matter? Christ freed us from the power of death, if you choose to accept His offer, but did not abolish the moral law.

  • But what you are not understanding….these interpretations have been from of old. They have not changed.
    It is the current, pro-homosexual culture that is trying to change them from what they have always been. There is no new interpretation of scripture – that is a lie from the pit of Hell.
    I don’t know if you are a Christian or not. If you are, you would also know about the Holy Spirit who God sent for us. He is still in control and leading people in His truth, which has been the same since the beginning.
    This “new interpretation” is just trash. Simple as that.

  • I know what I’m talking about. I’m waiting to see what you are referring to. Are you telling me that you don’t know?

  • She doesn’t troll this site, This is the first time I’ve seen here and she has a lot of common sense.

  • Well, someone has been the victim of lack of critical thinking. While I can understand your opinion, I do not agree with it. Exactly how are you being asked to embrace it? Is someone forcing you to have sex with a woman. I think it would be fairer to say that you are being asked to mind your own business.

  • exactly the point I made. For almost 3,000 years, there has been one interpretation of those verses. Ask any practicing Jew.

  • I’m not the one trying to say anything. St. Paul said it.
    “if you accept his offer.” Do I have to remind you of how many times scripture said that Jesus died once for ALL. That sin (not sins) has been conquered, for ALL. Those verses have no contingency in them. Have you considered the possibility that the GOOD NEWS may be that you are reconciled to G-D whether you want to be or not? Because, the good news that you proclaim doesn’t sound very good.

  • No Sandy, you are wrong. History extends further than the past 100 years when the evangelical movement began. Scripture is constantly being reinterpreted. It was reinterpreted when Jerome translated it into Latin. It was reinterpreted when King James had it reinterpreted into Old English. It was reinterpreted when the Old Testament was translated into Greek. Each translation provides another interpretation. Each piece of new information that we uncover through ancient manuscripts leads to potentially more interpretations.

    But underlying all this are fundamental differences in how the Bible is perceived. An evangelical christian is going to perceive it as carved in stone and meaning exactly what it says in the king james version. The rest of the christian world has a different understanding of the Bible.

    Yes, the Holy Spirit is active; Jesus is still present as he promised he would be. And G-D continues to lead people to places that neither you nor I understand. But then again, it isn’t our job to understand. It is our job to let G-D be G-D.

  • If you know what you are talking about, why are you asking. I am referring to the texts you cited.

  • The only thing that is clear is that you are attracted to articles on homosexuality. I am wondering why.

  • 1. that there is one and only one way of looking at scripture
    2. that scripture means exactly what it says (problematic when it comes to revelations which was written in code)
    3. that G-D is out to judge and condemn all those who do not conform to our view of what the bible says.
    4. that biblical exegesis is an anathema.
    5. that sexual predilections are more important than how we treat each other–Jesus said nothing about homosexuality but he spoke a lot about caring for the vulnerable of our society.
    6. That the 100-150 years of their existence taught them truths that escaped the 2000 years of other churches.
    7. etc.

  • Are you stil here? Have you repented all of your sins yet? Don’t you think you should get cracking?

  • 1. Scripture does not change. It opens up, but, that does not change the scripture, or the meaning of that scripture..
    2. sometimes a cigar is just a cigar.
    3. Christ has already condemned and the judgment comes later. You may not like that He condemned people practicing homosexuality to Hell, neither will they if they do not repent.
    4. So, you hate Christ’s word.
    5. Christ spoke about the sin of homosexuality all over the Bible. He loves them enough to warn them several times about their behaviour.
    6. yea, right
    7 . yawn

  • 1. our understanding of scripture changes. As new texts are found ambiguities and lacunae in old texts are clarified and scripture is changed.
    2. when it comes to scripture, that position is an insult to the intelligences of those who penned the texts and those who hear the texts.
    3. Christ has already forgiven. Period.
    4. Your are nonresponsive
    5. Look up who Christ was/is. Christ is Jesus and Jesus’ words are recorded in the gospels and a few places in Acts. Homosexuality is not mentioned.
    6. Correct
    7. I agree

    I hope that you can see that you are confirming the author if this article’s position. When it comes to evangelicals, you are in your own world and there is no possibility of dialogue. You can’t even understand a position other than your own much less dialogue.

  • The only thing clear is that you have a predilection to issues relating to homosexuality. There could be multiple reasons why you find this reinforcing.

  • Apparently, you don’t either. It was the scripture that you cited. Go back a few levels and read it for yourself.
    You can be quite amusing.

  • You are entitled to your opinion of what scriptures mean. That does not make your opinion True. Nor does it mean that G-D shares your opinion.

  • The only thing that you “see” sandi, is what you want to see. That’s the crux of much of the problem here.

  • 1. Scripture is only interpreted by scripture
    2. Why would that be?
    3. Christ has forgiven who? If one has not repented of their sins, they are not forgiven. Forgiveness is not automatic. It requires repentance.
    4.
    5. Read John 1:1-10 as I have advised you before
    6. keep hoping
    7.me too

    And you can try to insult me as much as you like. You have shown a lack of knowledge for scripture – even the scripture I refer you to to help you, my friend.
    Nothing changes scripture: Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever.

  • So? You asked, I answered. Is there something that you did not understand?

  • Apologies. So, here you state there is only one interpretation and others you suggest the meaning has changed?

  • No. Scripture is quite clear on that subject. Show me where Christ changed His mind.

  • So are you. You have cited no scripture for your pagan references – which is where we started.

  • Trying to find fault with me does not change the fact that Christ condemned homosexuality. Show me the scripture where He changed His mind.

  • Apologies accepted.
    But you are a bit off. You asked for the scripture justification. I provided it.

  • You are entitled to believe whatever you wish about me. Your belief does not make it true.
    We have a theme going on here.

  • 1. That is patently false but understandable given your faith tradition. Tell me where in the bible that it says that only the bible is to be used to interpret the bible. After you do that, read where paul is instructing timothy to hold fast to the traditions passed on to him. Paul is referring to extra-biblical sources of revelation.
    2. It’s a shame that you even have to ask that question.
    3. As I have already demonstrated elsewhere, that view is not entirely supported by scripture. Specificaly, there is a lot of scripture that endorses the view that all have been forgiven non contingently.
    4. I have sandi

    What you say makes sense from the perspective of your faith tradition. Your faith tradition does not speak infallibly.

  • You could start with the story of the samaritan woman who asks Jesus for healing. Jesus tells her that he has come for the lost sheep of the house of Israel (ie. not her). She reminds him that even dogs are given scraps from the table. Jesus changed his mind.

    If by “Christ” you mean “G-D” recall the story where Abraham implores G-D not to destroy. Scripture records him as being successful.

  • This discussion has been you demanding me to provide the references that you cited. Don’t go changing the story.

  • You have yet to provide the source for your opinion that Jesus condemned homosexuality. And as far as changing His mind. read my other response.

  • You are entitled to your belief. Your belief does not make it true. If believing that homosexuality is a sin keeps you out of the bed of another woman, all the more power to you. Otherwise, how is it relevant to you?

  • I have tried to show you. You won’t look at the scripture I have cited for you. Your opinion is your own fault, not through lack of trying to help you.

  • What has that to do with homosexuality? Where does Christ teach that homosexuality is no longer a sin? Where’s your scripture. He taught quite straightforwardly that it leads to death. Why hasn’t He done the same to contradict that? Where is your scripture?

  • Don’t pretend to be stupid, it doesn’t become you. Read the previous postings and you will see it. Hint: the reference was to Exodus.

    At this point Sandi, I find it necessary to shake the dust of my sandals and move on. You are speaking a different language than any non evangelical christian and dialogue is not possible.

  • and you have shown no scripture showing that the only source of interpretation of scripture is scripture. Sorry. You are doing exactly what you say should not be done–allowing your belief, rather than scripture, guide your interpretation of scripture.
    By Sandi, have a good life.

  • Read the question you asked. I answered it. Where does Jesus teach that homosexuality is a sin? Not Paul, Not Moses but Jesus.

  • The truth of scripture is not contingent on my belief in it, mark. Christ doesn’t need my help.

  • And be a balancing perspective to any vulnerable person who may be reading her screed.

  • I’ve told you over and over where Christ taught that homosexuality is a sin.

    Leviticus 18:22 – 22 You shall not lie with a male as with a woman. It is an abomination.

    Leviticus 20:13 – If a man lies with a male as he lies with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination. They shall surely be put to death. Their blood shall be upon them.

    You refuse to learn how Christ is the Word of the Bible and how all things were created through Him. That is where you make your error.
    I’d be honoured to help you with that.

  • Aside from being my belief, it is what Christ taught:

    Leviticus 18:22 – 22 You shall not lie with a male as with a woman. It is an abomination.
    Leviticus 20:13 – If a man lies with a male as he lies with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination. They shall surely be put to death. Their blood shall be upon them.

  • Show me, in the Gospels, where Jesus is quoted as saying anything about homosexuality. By equating the persona Christi with the Bible, you are raising the bible to the level of a deity. Thus making you a Biblitian not a Christian. Islam, not christianity, is the religion of the book.

  • The “point” sandi, is to answer your question: to wit: what is the scriptural basis for what I was saying. I provided that. THAT is the point. You asked, I answered. That is what I am telling you.

  • Why do you want to confine Christ to the Gospels? That’s like me saying to you, show me where you have said something in the second quarter of this blog.

    John 1English Standard Version (ESV)

    The Word Became Flesh

    1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was in the beginning with God. 3 All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. 4 In him was life,[a] and the life was the light of men. 5 The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.

  • Moses, not Christ. If you are equating the persona Christi with the Bible, you are making the Bible a deity. Making yourself an idolator. A Biblistian, not a Christian.

  • Why do you want to equate Christ with the Bible? Note the difference between Word and word. The words of moses is not The Word. The Word transcends everything that we could possibly imagine. The Word is the person and divinity of G-D made present in Jesus. It is not a book. The Bible is a finger that points us to G-D, it is not G-D. The fool fixates on the finger while the wise person uses the finger to see G-D. Don’t become so fixated on the words that you fail to recognize The Word walking in your midst.

  • “Why do you want to equate Christ with the Bible?” 2 Timothy 3:16-17English Standard Version (ESV)
    16 All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, 17 that the man of God[a] may be complete, equipped for every good work.”

    “The words of moses is not The Word. ” Leviticus 18King James Version (KJV)

    18 And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying,
    2 Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, I am the Lord your God.

    3 After the doings of the land of Egypt, wherein ye dwelt, shall ye not do: and after the doings of the land of Canaan, whither I bring you, shall ye not do: neither shall ye walk in their ordinances.4 Ye shall do my judgments, and keep mine ordinances, to walk therein: I am the Lord your God.

    5 Ye shall therefore keep my statutes, and my judgments: which if a man do, he shall live in them: I am the Lord.”

    The Word is the Word – – back to John 1. Whether writing or spoken – the Word is the Word. See again, John 1:1-5
    The Bible is how we know God. There is no other device to confirm or deny truth, but the Bible. We know God through His Word.

    God will not contradict Himself: Numbers 23:19King James Version (KJV)

    19 God is not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good?

    Leviticus 18:22 – 22 You shall not lie with a male as with a woman. It is an abomination.
    Leviticus 20:13 – If a man lies with a male as he lies with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination. They shall surely be put to death. Their blood shall be upon them.

  • No. Christ. Christ gave the word to Moses. Read Leviticus 18:1, as I have suggested.

  • You stated it perfectly. Some people may have a weaker self concept than I have at present and could be led to self hatred by her bitter diatribes against LGBT persons.

  • Nothing that you have cited supports your point. Sandi, I am very serious about this. Please talk to your pastor about this issue. You are articulating things that are not consistent with the teachings of any christian denomination.

    To be breathed by G-D is not equivalent to being Christ.
    G-D told Moses to tell the people that G-D was G-D, not the torah (much less the bible which didn’t exist).
    “I am the Lord your G-D” “I” not the torah, not the bible.

    I am serious. Talk to your pastor. The Bible is not G-D.

  • The scripture references I provided was nothing?
    You know what Sandi, you are the biggest hypocrite on the face of this earth.

  • You proved nothing with them. We’ll go back to this then, what were you trying to say?

  • What I am saying is scripture. Do you have a pastor? Check it out. Christ is God. I provided scripture for your assertions. Just because you choose not to believe scripture, is between you and God. It’s all right there for you.
    If you are a Christian, and you do not know Jesus is God, what philosophy are you following?
    The Bible is God revealing Himself to us, mark.
    He taught that homosexuality is a sin in the references I have given to you countless times. And, I will again:

    Leviticus 18:22 – 22 You shall not lie with a male as with a woman. It is an abomination.

    Leviticus 20:13 – If a man lies with a male as he lies with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination. They shall surely be put to death. Their blood shall be upon them.
    As told to Moses, by God. Blessings to you.

  • Sandi, I was reminded this weekend of what most of us are all too familiar with; there is NO condemnation in Christ. For those who call upon the name of the Lord every sin we have committed and every sin we will commit has been wiped clean (if you do indeed believe the bible calls sexual preference a sin).
    If we disagree with this–that all sin is wiped clean through Christ– then we are preaching the gospel of works, or “earned” grace, which we know is untrue. “It is by faith we have been saved.”
    I was reminded that Jesus is both our redeemer and our judge. It is “in Christ” that God does not “see” our sins, but we are clothed “in Christ” wholly adopted and loved, sealed and given the promise of the Spirit that nothing can stand against… whether it be your (biblically) perceived sin of homosexuality or your sin of self-righteousness, if we are in Christ we are a new creation, not judged by the flesh, but by the out-pouring of love that Jesus has lavished on ALL OF US.
    If we say, “yes” to Christ no sin has a hold on us… Jesus is too powerful and too blameless and too perfect to allow those who place faith in him to perish… you know that, don’t you Sandi?

    For all intent and purposes, anyone who places their faith in Jesus literally has a “Jesus suit” on, God can’t view us as any way but holy, or he’d be viewing his son as unholy.

    We are all “in Christ” and as much as that might make some folks angry, who “work” really hard to “be good,” Jesus says, no! I am sorry of this seems unfair to you, Sandi, but this is the God we worship and the love he guides by.

  • Before you can start using the Bible to push your anti homosexual agenda (self loathing?) it is imperative that you first examine the assumptions that you have about the Bible. You have stated fairly clearly that the Bible is the person of Christ. The underlying logic behind that seems to be that John said that the Word was with God and that the Word was God and that the Bible is the Word of God. That is faulty logic that results in the deification of the Bible. That is NOT christianity. It is preaching a false Jesus and I rebuke you!!!!

    John was describing the nature of the relationship between Jesus and G-D. Jesus is The Word of G-D. Jesus is G-D become flesh. JESUS is the most complete revelation of the nature of G-D. We are left with testimonies about Jesus. We are left with approximations and recollections of what He said and taught. Those writings, even though the are the word of G-D, are imperfect because they are limited by words. G-D is infinite. G-D is so far beyond yours or my ability to understand. JESUS is the best approximation we have to the nature of that infinite being that we call G-D. The act of putting experiences and revelations down on paper limits the infinite. That is not to take away from the Holiness of scripture but it is to say that those words are not the same thing as G-D.

    So if you want to get into the mind of G-D, what should we do? There was one person and one person only who was G-D made flesh. If you want to get into the mind of G-D, the first step, the last step, and every step in between is to immerse yourself into the person of Jesus. How did He live? What did He teach? In what ways did he rock the boat? What was it that He said about G-D that upset those in authority? Whom did he associate with? In what manner did he interact with them? Did he ever say “change and I’ll love you?” or was it more like: He loved me and that empowered me to change? What did Jesus say about how it is that we are to relate to each other? What did JESUS (not paul, not moses but Jesus) say about homosexuality. If the Bible is the word of G-D then the most important filter that we must use in understanding that word is The Word. You have extracted verse after verse from the Bible to prove your point while ignoring everything that that person, who is at the core of what it is to be Christian, taught us about how we are to relate to each other. You are using Scripture as a tool to beat people into conformity with your ideal of right and wrong. This is exactly what the Pharisees did and I hope you recall how Jesus felt about that.

    Do you want to talk about abominations? do you ritually clean yourself after every menses before you have sex with your husband? If not, you are an abomination. Do you ever eat shell fish? If so, you are an abomination. Do you ever eat a cheese burger (and yes, look up the references I gave) then you are violating the law.

    Read what Paul said to the Church at Rome about the role of the law. 3:21ff you will notice that there is nothing about the necessity of “accepting” the gift of redemption. Look at Abraham (ch 4) who was justified independently of the law. It was not through the law that the promises to Abraham were made; it was through faith. Examine 5:10 and ask yourself where is the necessity of “accepting” the gift of salvation. 5:15 Through Adam the many (and that means everyone right?) died… the gracious giftof the one person Jesus christ overflowed for the many (the same “many” as Adam’s sin). There is no mention of accepting that gift. v18 “through one transgression condemnation came upon all, so through one righteous act ACQUITTAL AND LIFE CAME TO ALL.” Chapter 7 talks about freedom from the law. 8:1: There is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. There is no “test” there to determine if a person is “in Christ Jesus.” There is no verse that says that Sandi Luckins gets to determine whether or not a person is “in Christ.” You focus on certain verses in Romans and the Corinthian letters. Read the whole thing. Understand the bigger picture that those verses are embedded in. Make some attempt to understand WHY Paul wrote the words you love to quote. Make some effort to learn what the words ἀρσενοκοίτης and μαλακός and πορνεία actually mean before you hurt yourself jumping to conclusions. These are the words that Paul wrote. Make some effort to understand what they mean.

    but most important, if you try to clobber people with bible verses without first immersing yourself in the person of Jesus, as shown in the gospels, you are spewing forth your agenda, not G-D’s.

  • You have still not identified which philosophy you follow.

    ” You have stated fairly clearly that the Bible is the person of Christ” No. I have stated that the Bible reveals Christ/God to us.

    ” We are left with approximations and recollections of what He said and taught.”
    2 Timothy 3:16English Standard Version (ESV)
    16 All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness…”
    1 Corinthians 1: 1 Paul, called by the will of God to be an apostle of Christ Jesus, and our brother Sosthenes,”

    ” If you want to get into the mind of G-D, the first step, the last step, and every step in between is to immerse yourself into the person of Jesus.” The way to see the mind of God, is to read His word.

    I have told you at least 6 times now what Christ said about homosexuality and this is only one example:
    Leviticus 18:22 – 22 You shall not lie with a male as with a woman. It is an abomination.
    Leviticus 20:13 – If a man lies with a male as he lies with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination. They shall surely be put to death. Their blood shall be upon them. ” And now you have it again.

    Did he ever say “change and I’ll love you?” He loves all of us, and He died for all of us, should we choose to accept that gift.
    Acts 3:19 ESV Repent therefore, and turn again, that your sins may be blotted out,
    Luke 13:3 ESV No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.

    “Do you want to talk about abominations?” Just because a person commits other sins, does not negate the truthfulness that homosexuality is a sin.

    “Read what Paul said to the Church at Rome about the role of the law. 3:21ff you will notice that there is nothing about the necessity of “accepting” the gift of redemption.”
    Without redemption, one will go to Hell. God forces that on no one.
    Acts 3:19 – English Standard Version
    Repent therefore, and turn back, that your sins may be blotted out,”

    “There is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. ” Very true. Christians have repented of their sin and confess their sin daily. That is why there is no condemnation.

    Romans 6:23 – English Standard Version
    For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

    You choose Christ, or you choose sin. Two options. There are saved in this world and there are unsaved. Which are you?

    If you need a lesson on how Christ spoke to Moses and told him what to write, and how Christ taught Paul through revelation for 3 years, aside from the enormous amount of scripture I have submitted to you, of which you have shown no interest, then I’ll try to help you with this again.

    It would be much easier if you give me the book, chapter and verse you are struggling with.

    I do understand the scripture because it has been translated into English, so I don’t need a “original languages” defence for trying to change scripture as has been accepted through the centuries….
    Scripture does not change. It may evolve but, the original meaning will not change because Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever. (Hebrews 13:8)

  • 2nd Comment:
    If you consider helping people to know how they need Christ in their life, so they can be pleasing to Him and journey on their way to Heaven to be “anti-homosexual”, who do you represent?

  • ” You have stated fairly clearly that the Bible is the person of Christ”
    No. I have stated that the Bible reveals Christ/God to us.

    You are deluding yourself. You have not said that the Bible reveals Christ/God to us. You have said that the Bible is Christ talking.

    16 All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for
    reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness…”

    You keep quoting this but cry foul when you are corrected with scripture. Where in that verse does it say that scripture IS G-D?

    If you are reading G-D’s word without immersing yourself in the person of Jesus, you are deluding yourself.

    Let me get this through your thick head. You are quoting moses and paul. Not Christ.

    Luke 13:3 ESV No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.

    I see you deleted the verses that state the contrary.

    “without redemption” what do you think the cross was?

    I am not struggling with anything sandi.

    I do understand the scripture because it has been translated into
    English, so I don’t need a “original languages” defence for trying to
    change scripture as has been accepted through the centuries….

    I see. G-D dictated the scriptures in King James English. Wrong. English often does not have words that fully correspond to the originals. Without an appreciation of the original languages you are simply inserting your own meaning into the texts.

    Scripture does not change. It may evolve but, the original meaning will
    not change because Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever.

    you are equating scripture and christ again. How can you be so certain that the meaning you attribute to the texts is the original meaning?

  • You are assuming that the people you are “helping” don’t already have Christ in their lives and are in intimate relationships with them. I am advocating allowing G-D to be G-D and acknowledging that I don’t need to understand or approve of where G-D leads someone. Try it sometime. It’s quite liberating.

  • Sandi, I was reminded this weekend of what most of us are all too familiar with; there is NO condemnation in Christ. For those who call upon the name of the Lord every sin we have committed and every sin we will commit has been wiped clean (if you do indeed believe the bible calls sexual preference a sin).
    If we disagree with this–that all sin is wiped clean through Christ– then we are preaching the gospel of works, or “earned” grace, which we know is untrue. “It is by faith we have been saved.”
    I was reminded that Jesus is both our redeemer and our judge. It is “in Christ” that God does not “see” our sins, but we are clothed “in Christ” wholly adopted and loved, sealed and given the promise of the Spirit that nothing can stand against… whether it be your (biblically) perceived sin of homosexuality or your sin of self-righteousness, if we are in Christ we are a new creation, not judged by the flesh, but by the out-pouring of love that Jesus has lavished on ALL OF US.
    If we say, “yes” to Christ no sin has a hold on us… Jesus is too powerful and too blameless and too perfect to allow those who place faith in him to perish… you know that, don’t you Sandi?
    For all intent and purposes, anyone who places their faith in Jesus literally has a “Jesus suit” on, God can’t view us as any way but holy, or he’d be viewing his son as unholy.
    We are all “in Christ” and as much as that might make some folks angry, who “work” really hard to “be good,” Jesus says, no! I am sorry of this seems unfair to you, Sandi, but this is the God we worship and the love he guides by.

  • If they are practicing homosexuality unrepentantly, they do not have Christ in their lives mark.

  • You are so lost, I wonder if I can help you. Your questions were answered, yet you cannot see the truth
    2 Corinthians 4:4 -English Standard Version
    In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.
    I suspect that is your problem. Blessings.

  • One who is actively, sinning unrepentantly is not in Christ.
    Revelation 2:20 International Standard Version (ISV)
    20 But I have this against you: You tolerate that woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophet and who teaches and leads my servants to practice immorality and to eat food sacrificed to idols

  • So you say sandi. G-D may have other ideas. Perhaps you should meet some practicing homosexuals (well, I suppose they have all the practice they need to become the real thing) who have G-D in their hearts. It’s unfortunate when reality conflicts with a firmly held belief. Reality often comes out the loser.

    Tell me something, are you a follower of the Bible or a follower of Jesus?

  • If I’m lost, I rest in the knowledge that G-D is here with me. That’s all that really matters.

    Quoting scripture proves nothing other than the fact that you can quote scripture.

    are you a follower of the Bible or of Jesus?

  • 1 Timothy 6:3-5New King James Version (NKJV)
    3 If anyone teaches otherwise and does not consent to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which accords with godliness, 4 he is proud, knowing nothing, but is obsessed with disputes and arguments over words, from which come envy, strife, reviling, evil suspicions, 5 useless wranglings[a] of men of corrupt minds and destitute of the truth, who suppose that godliness is a means of gain. From such withdraw yourself.
    I suspect this is true of you as you cannot see the truth in front of your nose, my friend. May the Lord bless you with His wisdom.

  • I have tried to help you but you have no interest in learning. I pray perhaps the Lord can reveal His truth to you at some time, until then, as you suggested yesterday, enough. (edited)
    .

  • I see the truth as clearly as G-D chooses to reveal said truth at any given moment in time.

    Quoting scripture proves nothing sandi. even the devil can quote scripture.

    Are you a follower of scripture or a follower of Jesus?

  • You still haven’t talked to your pastor have you? There is no Christ without Jesus. That is why it is essential that you immerse yourself into the person of Jesus before you can begin to understand anything about Christ. But you say that’s not necessary.

    Are you a follower of Jesus or the Bible?

  • Again, your lack of understanding displays itself.

    16All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; 17so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.

  • Quoting scripture proves nothing. Even the devil can quote scripture. Shall I quote the Quran as proof of the validity of the Quran?

    Are you a follower of the Bible or a follower of Jesus?
    All I can see is that you follow the bible and know nothing of Jesus. What a shame.

  • Your choice to not understand displays more about you than you would care to share, mark. I’ve answered enough of your questions that you can look back and see anything you have asked, and have received the truth. God bless you.

  • I’ll take that as your answer. You should stop presenting yourself as a Christian because a Christian is first and foremost a follower of Jesus.

    What you have not answered is whether you are a follower of Jesus or a follower of the Bible. Your actions show that while you are able to quote the Bible extensively, you have no knowledge of the person of Jesus who was and is the revelation of G-D.

    Given this state of affairs, I agree, further discussion is pointless.

  • I once quoted that very story to Sandi as evidence that Jesus can change his mind.

  • There are so many issues in the world regarding human attitudes and our behavior to one another that I am in despair over the human race. I try to be as evenhanded as I can, even though as you know, we differ substantially in our views regarding human sexuality. But certainly any study on the subject of human sexuality should be rigorous and quantifiable. I consider Sandi a friend, even as I accept that she and I take a different approach as we endeavor to share our witness for Jesus Christ. But on the whole I tend to agree with her view of scripture and its import even as we differ in methodology. There are, of course, a host of issues affecting this present world, and yet many who post here seem concerned only with the issues that affect the socio-political state of the U.S. I often wish that we could take a broader perspective. It’s a small world after all. I do not dismiss your feelings with respect to what you consider the hateful self-righteousness of many who proclaim the name of Christ, but at the same time I don’t know how to assuage them.

  • Thank you, Edward. Though we do disagree on these subjects, and on faith in general, I in no way sense evil intent in you. I think you are a good man, which is why I remain respectful and communicative.

    Sandimonious, who has recently announced herself free of sin with nothing to ask forgiveness for– yes Indeedy she did!– is a horse’s ass of a different color. I’ve met her type too many times to count. She has no interest in truth or goodness, but only in being right and righteous.

    I’m really surprised, in one sense, that you don’t see it. Or, more likely, given the type of man you are, that you do see it but are willing to excuse it because she shares your religious beliefs. But that’s my point. She doesn’t really. She has the form down pat, but like all narcissistic and sociopathic personalities, the content escapes her. My mother was the same type, which is why I see it so clearly. No matter what anyone’s story was about, she was always able to turn it to an account of what a victim, martyr and saint she was.

    I also appreciate your desire to assuage my feelings. But it’s not necessary. I’m a big boy, and I have been in this fight for a long time. And you are a respectful, caring person. Sandi, and a number of others I could name, are not.

    What I find interesting is that of all of the issues affecting our world, to use your terms, what obsesses them is 1) the sex lives of other people– people they don’t know, know nothing about, who have done them no harm, but about whom, they are willing to believe any evil, any wrong, and 2) whether other people meet their ideas of exactly what constitutes a True Christian (TM).

    It’s the basic problem with so much of fundamentalist and hyper conservative Christianity– and Islam, and Judaism, and probably Hinduism as well. An obsession with purity and sexual morality, and who is god’s BFFF, to the exclusion of actually being good people.

    As I said to you before, it is a form of megalomania, and it isn’t pretty.

  • Wrong. “The criterion on which the Bible is to be interpreted is Jesus Christ.” – Baptist Faith and Message, 1963
    One could also say that we interpret Scripture as led by the Holy Spirit, which, essentially is the same thing, seeing that we believe that the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are One.

  • ” “The criterion on which the Bible is to be interpreted is Jesus Christ.” – Baptist Faith and Message, 1963 ” And how does one know what Christ said? Scripture.

  • Wrong again. Interpreting Scripture by Scripture kicks the door wide open for proof-texting and isogesis, which is why there are so many denominations and cults, and why so many people have been hurt by religion.

  • Scripture is interpreted by scripture. There is no other manner to know God’s mind.

  • Forgive my tardy reply. I’ve been off the net for several days combating a period of severe depression. I’ve been laid off for the 3rd time in ten years and as I am a 58 year old with only semi-skills in the manufacturing sector my future prospects are somewhat bleak. As a natural pessimist, this recurring cycle of periodic layoffs has been a great test of my spiritual faith. You’ve heard the rationale before: “I’ve tried to do good, be an honest citizen, so why me?” Makes for a pretty weak testimony of faith Huh? I’ve failed to keep my skills abreast of a changing marketplace and this is the result. Anyway, I’ve got to try and soldier on. Your statement that Sandi has declared herself free of sin and has nothing to ask forgiveness for disturbs me. I do not doubt your declaration, but I will seek clarification from Sandi when next we speak. I do not hold with the teaching of perfectionism as regards our earthly walk, though some Christians do. Be well.

  • Edward, I am really, REALLY sorry to hear it. That can be really devastating, I know. I had to retire four years ago, about three years before I was planning on it or ready to. It was just impossible to earn a living as a photographer. And I have no other skills anymore, despite a list of degrees. Fortunately, my husband has a very good job, and we had paid off our house a year prior.

    I don’t know where you live, but your city, county, or state may be able to offer help in retraining. I do know the Small Business Administration has a number of programs to help in this kind of a situation. And if you have skills, maybe even skills you hadn’t considered before as income producing, perhaps self employment may work for you.

    I wish you nothing but the best.

    As for Sandi, her more or less exact statement was “I have nothing to ask forgiveness for.” I’d have to go back a fair distance in comments to get it exactly.

  • Thank you Ben, and I don’t discount at all your recollection, though Sandi will perhaps remember it differently. Since I know where you live, I have no trouble sharing where I live. About 25 miles SSE of Portland. Except for military service I have lived in the Pacific Northwest all my life. You are apprised no doubt with the senseless double murder and assault on our local transit system by a certified hater and headcase. A shock to the entire metropolitan region, but not unlooked-for I’m afraid, at least not by me. Such senseless attacks are on the rise all around us and I don’t expect them to diminish. We will all do well to be sensitive and alert to our environment wherever we reside.

  • Though what I will reference is not as well written as the works cited above, I am leaving a reference to something I wrote on same-sex marriage on my blog.

    Part of the evangelical problem with the kind of opposition it has made to Same-Sex Marriage (SSM) is that it has not distinguished opposition to SSM in the public square from opposition to SSM in the Church.

    My take on the Christian approach to SSM in America:

    http://flamingfundamentalist.blogspot.com/2012/05/should-christians-support-gay-marriage.html

  • I don’t know the exact wording. Did Jesus say he will accept anybody where they are? And who are we to judge that? Judgment condemns, love rebuilds the broken! We are no God nor Godly enough to condemn others.

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