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Evangelical leaders discuss future of their movement in Trump era

Blanchard Hall at Wheaton College near Chicago. Photo courtesy of Creative Commons

WHEATON, Ill. (RNS) — About 50 evangelical Christian leaders gathered early this week to discuss the future of evangelicalism amid concerns their movement has become too closely associated with President Trump’s polarizing politics.

The closed-door meeting Monday and Tuesday (April 16-17) was held at Wheaton College, a private school outside Chicago that is sometimes called the “evangelical Harvard.” Wheaton attracts a theologically diverse mix of evangelical students and scholars with its focus on the liberal arts.

The session took place as Trump’s evangelical advisers, a group often criticized for providing cover for the president’s unsavory behavior and language, are reportedly planning a June meeting between the president and as many as 1,000 evangelical pastors, similar to the meeting held in New York City during the 2016 campaign.


RELATED: Can evangelicals unite after the 2016 election?


Trump — who more than 80 percent of white evangelicals voted for and still largely support — wasn’t the explicit focus of the Wheaton gathering, convened by Doug Birdsall, honorary chair of Lausanne, the international evangelical movement.

But Jenny Yang, senior vice president of advocacy and policy at World Relief, told Religion News Service beforehand, “All of us in the room know that’s the context in which we’re operating.”

Others agreed that Trump’s alliance with white evangelicals had prompted the meeting, even as they sought to take the focus off him.

“Yes, the reason we are getting together is the 2016 election and the role that white evangelicals played in electing Trump,” said participant Katelyn Beaty, editor-at-large of Christianity Today and author of “A Woman’s Place.”

“But the content of our time together was not about the president and really not about the president’s evangelical advisory council. It was really about what does this mean for us and how have we gone wrong and how can we repair what’s clearly broken.”

The gathering aimed “to identify areas in which we may have missed the mark in terms of our witness to the world,” said Yang, who co-chaired the meeting with the Rev. Gabriel Salguero, president of the National Latino Evangelical Coalition, and Bishop Claude Alexander of The Park Church in Charlotte, N.C. The agenda included time to reflect and lament, as well as to consider possible topics that evangelicals could talk about more deeply in the future.

Some of the topics discussed during the meeting included immigration, the role of women in the church, racism, how to disagree civilly with other evangelicals and the need to engage with the growing church in the Global South, according to participants and tweets posted during the gathering by Beaty.

One quote Beaty posted on social media from the Rev. Tim Keller, best-selling author and founding pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in New York City, read: “There’s now a red evangelicalism and a blue evangelicalism.”

One meeting alone isn’t going to fix the problems that have been exposed within evangelicalism, Beaty said.

But “I’m grateful that the conversation is happening,” she said. “You can’t start to address the problems inherent to our movement if you can’t talk about them.”

Others who attended the gathering included evangelical leaders from around the world, as well as well-known names in American evangelicalism, such as the Rev. A.R. Bernard of the Christian Cultural Center in New York City, who publicly resigned last year from Trump’s campaign evangelical advisory board and spoke briefly about the board at the gathering; Trillia Newbell, director of community outreach for the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention; Fuller Theological Seminary President Mark Labberton; and church historian Mark Noll.

One News Now reported that Richard Land of Southern Evangelical Seminary said that guest list suggested the real purpose of the meeting is to marginalize evangelicals who support Trump.

But co-chair Salguero said: “It was not intended to be an anti-Trump meeting, nor was it. It was really about our public witness as evangelicals.”

And it left him feeling hopeful. The gathering wasn’t an echo chamber, he said. There was  diversity — politically and racially, men and women, millennials and elder leaders of evangelical institutions. There was agreement. There was disagreement.

There needs to be more of that within American evangelicalism, Salguero said.

As evangelicals we struggle with a whole host of issues, and maybe we can do so better together in conversation,” he said.

About the author

Emily McFarlan Miller

Emily McFarlan Miller is a national reporter for RNS based in Chicago. She covers evangelical and mainline Protestant Christianity.

263 Comments

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  • [the] guest list suggested the real purpose of the meeting is to marginalize evangelicals who support Trump

    And that’s a problem because…?

  • I’ll wait and see, but evangelicalism is more compromised than I have ever observed. In the face of real injustice our institutional voices are silent as we scrape and bow before the naked self-serving emperor.

  • Is this the same Wheaton that has a scholarship in honor of a woman who thinks the god of Islam is the same as the God of Christianity and is part of a group trying to normalize homosexuality in the church? That Wheaton?

  • Of course it was to marginalize Evangelicals who are Trump supporters. But not matter. These people are not my leaders anyway. They are an echo chamber who give one another assurance that they have cred. 80%+ of Evangelicals do not follow these “leaders.” If you are a leader, you are supposed to have followers. So maybe they are not leaders at all.

  • I don’t know.

    Are you the same kind of evangelical Christian who was upset that the prior president smoke and drank in public, but voted for a serial adulterer, cheat, admitted sexual assaulter and fraud?

  • Evangelicals’ fervent support of Trump is not universally shared by a crucial, and rapidly evaporating, subset of the white evangelicals—their children—who are leaving the faith in droves over its anti-LGBT and anti-science positions.

    Only 35 percent of white evangelicals are under the age of 50, compared with 54 percent of the population, according to the PRRI. And they are bleeding youth: Only 8 percent of white evangelicals are under the age of 30, compared with 21 percent of the American population.

    ~ Nina Burleigh http://www.newsweek.com/trump-evangelicals-support-millennials-888267

    What a legacy. What a high price to pay for worshiping an idol that is, ultimately, not in the least attractive to anyone with eyes wide open.

    What a legacy. What a mess of pottage to trade one’s birthright for.

    What a sordid, sorry legacy.

  • No, I’m not. I did not vote for Trump or for Clinton. I am, however, the kind of Christian who thinks a college whose tag line is “For Christ and His Kingdom” should not support things that mock Him and work against His kingdom.

  • “80%+ of Evangelicals do not follow these ‘leaders'”

    Is that because these “leaders” don’t realize that God wants to Make America White Again?

  • I have no problem with Evangelicals (or anybody else) who support Trump for political reasons. I disagree with them and I’ll never understand them, but so be it.

    What I can’t stomach are those — like Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell Jr. — who stubbornly cling to the notion that Trump is a person of high moral character, despite the more than ample evidence he constantly provides to the contrary.

    The problem is, these Evangelical leaders have painted themselves into a syllogistic corner. They’ve always claimed that only a virtuous Christian is worthy to lead the country. Ergo, if they support a candidate, they must maintain the illusion that that person is a virtuous Christian. In Trump’s case, that’s the steepest of uphill climbs.

    As a person of faith, I believe the best thing that can come from this disaster of a presidency is that we forever abandon religious litmus tests for political candidates and vote based on issues only. Until that happens, we’ll continue to get sucker-punched by charlatans like Trump.

  • I have no problem with groups conducting closed door meetings if it frees up participants to speak their minds. As long as the results of their discussions are ultimately made public, I don’t care about their process.

  • “should not support things that mock Him and work against His kingdom.”

    One would think that large scale support of your fellow professed Christians for a thoroughly and unabashed immoral person for political power would count as such a thing. But then again, I find that crowd tends to consider professed morals and values to apply more for others than their own.

  • The best guess is being racist is now more obviously important to the GOP than being Christian. 🙂

  • Mr. Goat, if Trump is the future, do we need to start calling him Emperor Trump? Equally important, will his Throne go to one of the sons or to his daughter? Do you expect there will be dynastic turmoil?

  • Evangelicals who worship at the Temple of Trump give the word hypocrisy a new set of meanings and Christianity a bad image.

  • I believe there is one God, not the God of one faith. We’ve made God who we want God to be, not who God truly is. In my view, you don’t normalize homosexuality, but you do normalize and support relationships that honor God, and I don’t think any one group has a monopoly on that, and never will.

  • So the entire article is written about a thought that the person received through being psychic? If no one said it, maybe it isn’t the reason. Jeepers!

  • I doubt the are anti-LGBT – I would say that they would prefer the people go to Heaven.

  • sounds anti-LGBTQ to me

    I wish we Christians would just own what we believe more. Evangelicals by and large see all aspect of the LGBTQ community to be sin and something to be repented of.

    So as much as they are anti-sin they are anti-LGBTQ which is to say entirely (though one could argue they don’t really care that much about sin but rather certain sins others have).

  • Well, they are mine. If you’re foolish enough to follow Trump and his tribe, then don’t come crying to me when he gets impeached for obstruction of justice. How you can support someone with three wives in succession and numerous one-night stands with women is way beyond me.

  • Not “evangelicals” Phillip – Christians. Christ taught that homosexuality is a sin that needs to be repented of to see the Kingdom of Heaven, so Christians are helping them to live with Christ – no hatred in that.

  • It’s not a Christian belief, its a belief held by some Christians. You don’t need to hold anit-LGBTQ positions to be a Christian. To be labeled as a certain type of Christian yes, but not a Christian.

    And it is hatred. They hate their identity, they hate their “lifestyle”, they hate their actions, relationships, etc. Its not a neutral position, its not indifference, its actively working to eradicate LGBTQ identities, rights, relationships, etc.

  • No. It is a Christian belief. A Christian’s job is to make disciples for Christ and one cannot be a disciple of Christ while sinning unrepentantly against Him.

    1 John 3: 7 Little children, let no one deceive you. He who practices righteousness is righteous, just as He is righteous. 8 He who sins is of the devil, for the devil has sinned from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that He might destroy the works of the devil. 9 Whoever has been born of God does not sin, for His seed remains in him; and he cannot sin, because he has been born of God.
    We would like to see homosexuals changed from sinners to holy. Christ wishes that none should perish.

  • Sure, but also know that every Christian still sins. That doesn’t negate their place in the community. Moreover, there is a great breadth of Christians and their beliefs that don’t align. From Catholic, to Baptist, to Orthodox, to Coptic.

    Ideas on sexuality are not salvation issues. Doesn’t mean its not important, but an LGBTQ person can absolutely be saved just as they are. Their salvation isn’t predicated on them no longer being LGBTQ any more than my salvation is predicated on me never sinning in some other way. Even more so when that sin is not universally understood or accepted.

    Am I not a Christian because I support women elders and pastors? Some see it as sin, but few would say that it precludes people from the faith.

  • So, going by the article, those in attendance were representatives of org’s like Fuller, Wheaton, and ERLC. Where exactly were the representatives of the “red” evangelicalism that Keller was speaking of? Sounds like a group of “blue” evangelicals getting together to congratulate themselves on just how blue they are.

  • Sometimes it helps to keep the door open a little. This confab honestly sounds like one of those times.

  • Of course we all sin, but a Christian repents of their sin.
    Homosexuality is a salvation issue. Christ taught that homosexuals will not see the Kingdom of Heaven.
    Their salvation is predicated on them repenting of their sin and following Jesus.
    Homosexuality is a sin that will keep one out of the Kingdom of Heaven.

  • There is nothing in the Gospels to indicate that Jesus ever taught anything about homosexuality.

  • Yeah, all those baby dolls, exploited women, and confidential arrangements — who could vote for ANYBODY who permitted and participated in such things?

  • not a problem:

    Deuteronomy 29: 22 And the next generation, your children who rise up after you, and the foreigner who comes from a far land, will say, when they see the afflictions of that land and the sicknesses with which the Lord has made it sick— 23 the whole land burned out with brimstone and salt, nothing sown and nothing growing, where no plant can sprout, an overthrow like that of Sodom and Gomorrah, Admah, and Zeboiim, which the Lord overthrew in his anger and wrath— 24 all the nations will say, ‘Why has the Lord done thus to this land? What caused the heat of this great anger?’ 25 Then people will say, ‘It is because they abandoned the covenant of the Lord, the God of their fathers, which he made with them when he brought them out of the land of Egypt,

    Ephesians 5:5 – For you may be sure of this, that everyone who is sexually immoral or impure, or who is covetous (that is, an idolater), has no inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God.

    Ephesians 5:5For you may be sure of this, that everyone who is sexually immoral or impure, or who is covetous (that is, an idolater), has no inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God. 6Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience. 7Therefore do not become partners with them; 8for at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light 9(for the fruit of light is found in all that is good and right and true), 10and try to discern what is pleasing to the Lord. 11Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them. 12For it is shameful even to speak of the things that they do in secret.

    Matthew 5:17New King James Version (NKJV)

    17 “Do not think that I came to destroy the Law or the Prophets. I did not come to destroy but to fulfill.

    Genesis 2:18Then the LORD God said, “It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit fore him.” 19Now out of the ground the LORD God had formedf every beast of the field and every bird of the heavens and brought them to the man to see what he would call them. And whatever the man called every living creature, that was its name. 20The man gave names to all livestock and to the birds of the heavens and to every beast of the field. But for Adamg there was not found a helper fit for him. 21So the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon the man, and while he slept took one of his ribs and closed up its place with flesh. 22And the rib that the LORD God had taken from the man he madeh into a woman and brought her to the man. 23Then the man said,

    “This at last is bone of my bones

    and flesh of my flesh;

    she shall be called Woman,

    because she was taken out of Man.”i

    24Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh. 25And the man and his wife were both naked and were not ashamed.

    Genesis 2:24 – Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh. –

    Deuteronomy 25:5 “If brothers dwell together, and one of them dies and has no son, the wife of the dead man shall not be married outside the family to a stranger. Her husband’s brother shall go in to her and take her as his wife and perform the duty of a husband’s brother to her. 6 And the first son whom she bears shall succeed to the name of his dead brother, that his name may not be blotted out of Israel. (It is always male and female)

    Isaiah 3:9 – The look on their countenance witnesses against them,

    And they declare their sin as Sodom;

    They do not hide it.

    Woe to their soul!

    For they have brought evil upon themselves.

    Jeremiah 23:14English Standard Version (ESV)

    14

    But in the prophets of Jerusalem

    I have seen a horrible thing:

    they commit adultery and walk in lies;

    they strengthen the hands of evildoers,

    so that no one turns from his evil;

    all of them have become like Sodom to me,

    and its inhabitants like Gomorrah.”

    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.

    Matthew 19:4 “Haven’t you read,” he replied, “that at the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female,’ 5 and said, ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh’? 6 So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.”

    Acts 15:19-20New International Version (NIV)

    19 Therefore my judgment is that we should not trouble those of the Gentiles who turn to God, 20 but should write to them to abstain from the things polluted by idols, and from sexual immorality, and from what has been strangled, and from blood.

    1 Kings 14:24 New International Version (NIV)

    24 There were even male shrine prostitutes in the land; the people engaged in all the detestable practices of the nations the LORD had driven out before the Israelites. – what do male prostitutes do? Abominations.

    1 Corinthians 6:9-11English Standard Version (ESV)

    9 Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, 10 nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. 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.

    1 Corinthians 6:18

    New International Version

    Flee from sexual immorality. All other sins a person commits are outside the body, but whoever sins sexually, sins against their own body.

    1 Corinthians 7: 2 But because of the temptation to sexual immorality, each man should have his own wife and each woman her own husband. 3 The husband should give to his wife her conjugal rights, and likewise the wife to her husband.

    1 Corinthians 10:8English Standard Version (ESV)

    8 We must not indulge in sexual immorality as some of them did, and twenty-three thousand fell in a single day.

    ed

    1 Timothy 1: 9-11 “ …. understanding this, that the law is not laid down for the just but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and sinners, for the unholy and profane, for those who strike their fathers and mothers, for murderers, 10 the sexually immoral, men who practice homosexuality, enslavers, liars, perjurers, and whatever else is contrary to sound doctrine, 11 in accordance with the gospel of the glory of the blessed God with which I have been entrusted.”

    1 Corinthians 7 – Now for the matters you wrote about: “It is good for a man not to have sexual relations with a woman.” 2 But since sexual immorality is occurring, each man should have sexual relations with his own wife, and each woman with her own husband. 3 The husband should fulfill his marital duty to his wife, and likewise the wife to her husband. 4 The wife does not have authority over her own body but yields it to her husband. In the same way, the husband does not have authority over his own body but yields it to his wife.” But since sexual immorality is occurring, each man should have sexual relations with his own wife, and each woman with her own husband.”

    Romans 1:24 Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. 25 They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen. 26 Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts.Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. 27 In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.

    Jude 1:7 – In a similar way, Sodom and Gomorrah and the surrounding towns gave themselves up to sexual immorality and perversion. They serve as an example of those who suffer the punishment of eternal fire

    1 Corinthians 11:9 -neither was man created for woman, but woman for man.

    1 Thessalonians 4:3-8New International Version (NIV)

    3 It is God’s will that you should be sanctified: that you should avoid sexual immorality; 4 that each of you should learn to control your own body[a] in a way that is holy and honorable, 5 not in passionate lust like the pagans, who do not know God; 6 and that in this matter no one should wrong or take advantage of a brother or sister.[b] The Lord will punish all those who commit such sins, as we told you and warned you before. 7 For God did not call us to be impure, but to live a holy life. 8 Therefore, anyone who rejects this instruction does not reject a human being but God, the very God who gives you his Holy Spirit.

    Galatians 5:19-21

    New International Version (NIV)

    19 The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; 20 idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions 21 and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.

    Ephesians 5:31

    New Living Translation (NLT)

    31 As the Scriptures say, “A man leaves his father and mother and is joined to his wife, and the two are united into one.”

    Colossians 3:5

    New Living Translation (NLT)

    5 So put to death the sinful, earthly things lurking within you. Have nothing to do with sexual immorality, impurity, lust, and evil desires.

    2 Peter 2:6 if by turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah to ashes he condemned them to extinction, making them an example of what is going to happen to the ungodly; 7 and if he rescued righteous Lot, greatly distressed by the sensual conduct of the wicked 8 (for as that righteous man lived among them day after day, he was tormenting his righteous soul over their lawless deeds that he saw and heard);

    Ephesians 5:24-25 New International Version (NIV)

    24 Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.

    25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her

    Ephesians 5:3 But among you there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality, or of any kind of impurity, or of greed, because these are improper for God’s holy people.

    Matthew 15:19 For from the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, all sexual immorality, theft, lying, and slander.20 These are what defile you.

    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.

    Revelation 21:8 ESV

    But as for the cowardly, the faithless, the detestable, as for murderers, the sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars, their portion will be in the lake that burns with fire and sulfur, which is the second death.”

    Revelation 22: 14 Blessed are those who do His commandments, that they may have the right to the tree of life, and may enter through the gates into the city. 15 But outside are dogs and sorcerers and sexually immoral and murderers and idolaters, and whoever loves and practices a lie.

    My favourite: 1 Corinthians 11:11New King James Version (NKJV) 11 Nevertheless, neither is man independent of woman, nor woman independent of man, in the Lord.

    BIBLICAL SUMMARY OF HOMOSEXUALITY

    • A wicked act (Gen 19:7; Judges 19:23)

    • An abomination (Lev 18:22; Lev. 18:26; Lev. 18:27; Lev. 18:29; Lev. 18:30; Lev. 20:13)

    • Folly (Judges 19:23)

    • A vile act (Judges 19:24)

    • A vile affection (Rom 1:26)

    • An act against nature (Rom 1:26)

    • An abusive act (1 Cor 6:9)

    • A sin against one’s own body (1 Cor 6:18)

    • An act that defiles (Lev. 18:24; Lev. 18:25; Lev. 18:27; Lev. 18:28; Lev. 18:30; 1 Tim 1:9)

    • Those that practice it shall not inherit the Kingdom of God (I Cor 6:9-10; Jude 1:7; Jude 1:13; Rev. 21:8; Rev. 21:27)

    (many thanks to Adam in Christ for this excellent summary)

  • Why do you confine Christ to the gospels? Do you know the He is God? Hence, everything said about homosexuality – every condemnation – was made by God/Christ/Holy Spirit. The disciples following Christ taught against homosexuality
    Paul, whom Christ chose to start the Gentile church – taught against homosexuality. As Christ is omniscient, He knew everything that Paul would teach and approved of it.
    The Jerusalem council knew what Paul would teach and approved of it.
    So, Leviticus is as relevant as the Book of Revelation in it’s condemnation of homosexuality. One of the reasons Sodom and Gomorrah was destroyed was because of homosexuality.

    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.

  • Ok so not lots of verses but none from Jesus.

    We’re back to the idea that sin keeps people out but also everyone sins and as an entire church body we don’t all agree on what is and is not sin.

    You seem to be making one sin larger and more important than others.

    Perhaps the better question is, what must one do to be saved?

  • Or perhaps its a manifestation of Matthew 10:34-36?

    34 “Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I have not come to bring peace, but a sword. 35 For I have come to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law. 36 And a person’s enemies will be those of his own household.

  • Sorta. The Bible is God breathed, inspired, etc. But Jesus is the Word of God. We know impicily that every verse is notade equal. We know there is context and history and cture. The Bible testifies to and points to the word of God, Jesus.

    If not were left with Levitical law no one follows and head coverings few denominations require.

    So unless all women who don’t cover their head are also not Christians, we know it’s more nuanced than your presenting. Moreover, we know no one sin keeps people out

  • Actually Christ dispensed with the civil and ceremonial laws and we are still living under the moral laws The “context and culture” defense is an excuse not to honour the Lord who taught that homosexuality is worthy of death – a sin,
    You need to read the few lines past “covering their heads”.
    Christ taught in several places that homosexuals will not see the Kingdom of Heaven,

  • Question: Do you eat shellfish? Pork? Cheeseburgers? If you’re a man do you cut your hair? If you’re a woman do you wear gold jewelry? Do you wear clothes made out of mixed fabrics? If you’re a woman have you ever spoken in a church? If you answered yes to any of these questions then you’re engaging in selective moralizing and also guilty of hypocrisy because all of those things (and plenty more) are included in the Bible, mostly Leviticus, written by men (always men) living in pre-Christian Palestine. Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but God did not do any of the writing.

  • Also. you do realize that Jesus is God, and He approved of everything written in the Bible?

  • If you want to pint me ti where Jesus said no to civil and ceremonial laws but yes to moral ones, again I’m all ears.

    Also if you have Jesus saying homosexuality keeps you from the kingdom I’m interested.

    But it seems to me your elevating some sin while ignoring others. Placing salvation on the line for a specific one while saying others are less important. I’m just interested in consistency here. If sin keeps us out how does any get in. If we can sin and still get in why does this one “sin” keep ppl out while I dunno racsim doesn’t or failure to be genrosu our care for the poor and stranger?

    Goats and sheeps makes a stronger argent for than you have for homosexuality

  • shell fish and pork are for Jews. I am a Christian, and I follow the moral law as set out in Leviticus and upheld by the New Testament – people who walked with Christ for 3 years.
    I suggest you learn more about the Bible. Christ is the Word of God and responsible for every word therein.

  • We are not Jews. Those laws were for the Jews. I am a Christian and Christ does not require me to follow the laws. I refer you to Acts 10: 9-16 for example.
    Christ taught against homosexuality all over the Bible, somewhere on this page I have listed several of the scripture.
    When we repent of our sin, and accept Jesus as our Lord and Saviour, that is when we are welcomed – not until.

  • Had you referenced him as Son of God, you might have had a case, but Jesus the Christ did not exist during the time of the Old Testament. There is no record of Jesus having expressed thoughts of any kind about homosexuality.

  • What about all the sins outlined in the sheep and goats? If we’re going all over the Bible it’s clearly taught that we will be judged for our care of the poor, the widow, the orphans. It’s why Sodom and Gomohra were destroyed. So until the church starts taking awaybsalvaaway for those who don’t visit ppl I prison, cloth the naked, etc. It all just looks like hate for LGBTQ ppl because we aren’t being consistent. Have a pastor lose their job over greed, over not having refugees in their home. Until then it’s just targeted hate

  • If this was truly a gathering of Evangelical “leaders,” it would include those who supported Trump.

  • Excuse me, but on what do you think St. Paul based his condemnation of homosexuality? Etchings he found on a rock in the desert? He based it on Leviticus of course. So if you wish to hurl Levitical admonitions at people then you simply can’t be selective if you wish to be taken seriously. And for the record, not all Jews abide by Levitical ritual laws – that is evidenced by the enormous number of Jewish men you see with neat haircuts, unlike the Hasidic variety which maintain that custom, along with all other Levitical restrictions. But since you maintain your Christian identity perhaps it escaped your notice that it was St. Paul who told women to keep their traps shut in church. Even the Evangelicals ignore that one, if the number of female “televangelists” is any indication. Therefore, it is you who need to read up on your Bible, not I.

  • Exegesis is reading the meaning out of scripture. Eisegesis is reading a meaning into scripture. That’s what you’ve done. in Matthew: 34-36, Christ tells his followers that attaching themselves to him will divide them from others, and make them an object of despite and hostility – even within their own families. The setting and context of his statement (verses 32, 33 and 37 – which you did not quote)) make it clear that the conflict he described was religious and spiritual in nature, not political or otherwise a mere human wrangle.

    No – the real problem with the rise of “Red & Blue Evangelicalism” is an ancient and recurring one – a compromise of the Christian world-view by mixing it with secular and humanistic values…thereby generating division and conflict over matters that have nothing to do with the integrity of the faith.

  • CUT TO THE CHASE, WILL YA?

    “There’s now a RED EVANGELICALISM and a BLUE EVANGELICALISM. … [So] the real purpose of the [50 leaders’] meeting is to marginalize [RED] EVANGELICALS who support Trump.”

    There you go.

    NICE.

    But why not “marginalize [BLUE] EVANGELICALS” as well? That way God & Jesus are pleased and all is well in Their kingdom.

  • Matthew 5:17 — “Do not think that I came to destroy the Law or the Prophets. I did not come to destroy but to fulfill.”

    That’s from Jesus — and it’s the critical bridge from the New Testament to its foundation in the Old Testament, affirming both its morality and its application to contemporary human affairs.

  • Sure, we don’t throw it out. We are however not under it in any way. We are not under two covenants at the same time. We follow Jesus, because as you say he is the fulfillment of what those laws were lead to but what they could never truly do. We can see his finger prints on the OT and learn a great deal about God, His love, His faithfulness, etc.

    The idea however that certain sin is somehow worse and will keep us out while others are less so AND for that sin to be something Jesus never directly talked about, BUT somehow the things he did talk about aren’t required for salvation creates some huge problems. Its so inconsistent to beg the question, what is really happening?

  • SIN is what “keeps us out,” and its universality (thanks to” original sin “) means that we’re ALL kept out unless and until we accept that Christ died for our own sins (and repentance is an essential part of that acceptance process). Jesus affirmed the basic moral framework of the universe as it is described in “the Law and the Prophets.” We are not under the “rules” of the OT regarding individual transgressions and punishments, but we are very much “under” (i.e., subject to) its moral demands. We are not bound by the OT’s particular moral strictures, but we are unescapably bound by its overall moral structure.

  • a compromise of the Christian world-view by mixing it with secular and humanistic values

    So, attempting to separate evangelicalism from advocacy of Trump is actually mixing secular values with Christianity?

  • We are bound by its moral structure only so much as it aligns with Jesus. Even before the law we can see how God interacted with those who trust Him. We can see the threads of who God is and what He desires from his people. The law is simply a part of that story. Jesus is the full revelation of all of that.

    I agree about repentance, the issue at hand is that across the breadth of Christianity there is disagreement on what is and is not a sin. So I’m sure there is much in my life some would see as sin, I don’t. As such I’ll never repent of it. Does that preclude me from salvation? Similarly do those who sin but are taught their actions are justified and never repent also no longer Christians? No, so why do we make this one issue about salvation when so many others aren’t?

  • “is that we forever abandon religious litmus tests for political candidates ”
    it’s why it is in the constitution.

  • She closes her eyes, and sees it on the back of her eyelids. Sometimes she sees it in the secret messages that god gives only to her.
    fair warning if you haven’t argued with sandimonious before. She is an unrepentant, raging religious bigot– she’s not sure catholics are Christians, but is sure that Mormons are not– with the intelligence of a hambone. Her whole schtick is passive-aggressive taken to a degree I haven’t seen outside of clinical practice.
    Or as I prefer to label it, a sweet little lollipop triple dipped in psycho.

  • except for the bacon sandwich, murdering your neighbors if they aren’t believers, and a few hundred other things that are no longer convenient.

  • Bottom line. If you voted for Trump, you may be Christian, but you are not moral. Young people see that. Expect the population of your churches to get old fast, as the young leave.

  • When 81% of Evangelicals knowingly voted for the most immoral and corrupt person ever to be president, I was through with religion. The religious will be mocked for at least a generation. We basically assume churches are dens of racism and hate.

  • Not really. The Constitution has a lot to say about the separation of church and state, but nothing about the separation of church and politics. People are free to vote based on whatever criteria they choose. My point is that voting based on a candidate’s professed religious values is foolish.

    Being Catholic didn’t prevent JFK from being a womanizer, and being Quaker didn’t prevent Nixon from bombing Cambodia. Moral superiority is one of the easiest things in the world to fake. Better to worry about one’s own morality and vote for candidates based on issues.

  • Please go read your Bible. Jesus never once referred to gay people. He did however refer to hypocrites, and to hateful people.

  • The point of all the OT requirements and limitations was to sustain the spiritual integrity of the physical line that would lead to the Messiah. Once the Messiah arrived, none of those particulars had any continuing relevance. We are released from their moral strictures…but we are very much bound by the moral structure built into the universe, as described in “the Law and the Prophets.” That’s what Jesus was affirming.

  • Jesus is the Christ. Christ is God. The Bible is the Word of God. Christ spoke all of the Bible

  • This isn’t a church, and I don’t happen to agree with women teaching or having authority over a man. But, homosexuality is a sin.

  • Sodom and Gomorrah were destroyed for their immorality Philip. Post the Ezekiel scripture and I will explain it to you.
    We are being consistent. They need to repent of their sin just like everyone else does. They aren’t special.

  • I suggest that you do a Bible study in “The Trinity”.
    Christ taught that homosexuality is a sin.

  • It means exactly what I implied. He breathed the Bible. “All things were made through Him and nothing was made that has been made without Him”.

  • we aren’t disagreeing on that. We are disagreeing on what I would interpret you as saying the bible is inerrant in the way American evangelicals say. Its not.

  • I don’t believe the Bible has errors. Man makes mistakes, Christ does not and He is big enough, after creating the Heavens ,the Earth and the Seas to assure His word was written correctly.

  • “Behold, this was the guilt of your sister Sodom: she and her daughters had arrogance, abundant food and careless ease, but she did not help the poor and needy”

    Not a lot of talk about LGBTQ people there. Actually, it kinda sounds like a description of the USA when you think about it.

    So when the church says “sorry there is not such thing as an LGBTQ christian” but continue to sanctify the USA, pastors who are arrogant and care little for the poor and the needy, its bigotry not consistence.

    Once the church takes these things, which are clear and Jesus preaches on, seriously, we’ll believe their focus on LGBTQ issues isn’t just bigotry, because its clearly not about unrepentant sin. If it was, we’d see people losing the leadership positions over these things, but we don’t.

  • “How you can support someone with three wives in succession and numerous one-night stands with women is way beyond me.”

    Its real easy if they promise you stuff and you never believed values applied to your own conduct. 🙂

  • “If you want to pint me ti where Jesus said no to civil and ceremonial laws but yes to moral ones, again I’m all ears.“

    OK:

    Don’t you see that whatever enters the mouth goes into the stomach and then out of the body? But the things that come out of a person’s mouth come from the heart, and these defile them. For out of the heart come evil thoughts–murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false testimony, slander. These are what defile a person; but eating with unwashed hands does not defile them. Matt 15:17-20.

  • Hey! Wait a minute…a closed-door meeting? Isn’t that a closed border?!? Hey Jenny Yang, what about welcoming the stranger?!? I thought we were living out Matthew 25? #notmyleaders #iamanevangelical

  • “Christ taught that homosexuality is a sin.”

    No, he did not.

    (but we’ve been here before)

  • “Christ taught that homosexuals will not see the Kingdom of Heaven.”

    He taught no such thing.

  • “I did not come to destroy but to fulfill.”

    The fulfillment is love of God and of neighbor put on the same plane. No picking and choosing.

  • Sigh – sometime I wonder why I even try. If that’s what I had meant, that’s what I would have said. What I did say is that the DIVISION of the Evangelical world into pro-and anti- Trump contingents is a symptom of secular values having infiltrated its Christianity. Sin is “fissiparous” – it generates division and antagonism.

  • The love of God, given and received, naturally extends itself to love of neighbor. In that sense, they are the same love. But they are different expressions of the same love, because they have different objects/respondents. The love of God is primary and generative, while the love of neighbor is secondary and derivative. They can’t be “on the same plane,” because God’s not on the same plane as our neighbors

  • The OT said they defile a JEW, not a person in general. The dietary and ceremonial laws were meant to separate Jews as a distinct and special people before the Lord (as they still are). You will find no place in the OT or anywhere else where they were applied to Gentiles. However, while righteous Gentiles were not expected to become observant Jews they were always expected to adhere to certain standards of morality, including sexual purity — and the Torah speaks specifically of certain Gentile peoples judged and rejected by God because they did not.

    It’s a common misconception of those with superficial scriptural knowledge.

  • Depends on how you interpret the OT.

    The larger point I’m making is that people pick and choose. They focus on the things they want (or are taught to focus on) and ignore other parts. I just wish people would be honest with it. Admit they are picking and choosing with what they believe to be good reasons, but picking and choosing none the less. Making some stuff more important than others.

    Again, if we look at the sheep and goats, I’ve never seen a pastor lose their job for the unrepentant sin of not visiting people in jail, or housing the stranger, feeding the hungry, or supporting Trump and his racism, bigotry, etc. but I have seen lots lose their jobs because they are gay.

    It just displays the reality that purity or holiness or repentance or even sin isn’t what its about.

  • And, of course, if you want to see a clear snapshot of why younger evangelicals are walking away from the churches as fast as their feet can carry them, all you need to do is tune into discussions at religious news or blog sites online. There, you’ll see folks professing to be the biggest, baddest Christians around — the ones who take the bible literally — deflecting discussions about why young folks are leaving (they can’t take the homophobic hate any longer) and turning them into discussions about how “Christ” taught that “homosexuality” is a sin.

    The word “homosexual/homosexuality” was coined only in the 19th century. The biblical texts were written ages before that. The biblical texts do not mention the topic of homosexuality, and could not do so, when they lacked language and a concept for talking about what so obsesses some self-professed followers of Christ that they can’t stop talking about what’s not there in the bible.

    And can’t stop lying about what “Christ” said, yanking a proof-text here or there from the Jewish scriptures and putting it into the mouth of Christ — texts ripped from their context, with the bulk of what those scriptures say about love, justice, and mercy totally ignored….

    I applaud the young folks leaving this toxic nonsense behind — the hate disguised as maudlin, insincere “love,” the message of salvation that focuses on someone else’s perceived sins and never my own, the lying for the Lord, the sheer stupidity of it all: it’s no longer selling, for younger Christians.

    It’s not selling for very good reasons.

  • Always interpretation is the last line of defense when one doesn’t like the answer given. However, the Torah doesn’t make many bones about it. It wraps up the long list of sexual prohibitions with this grim warning:

    You must not live according to the customs of the [Gentile] nations I am going to drive out before you. Because they did all these things, I abhorred them. — Lev. 20:23.

    As for picking and choosing, WE’RE not doing the picking and choosing, nor does what we “want” have anything to do with it. The decision about what would or wouldn’t be required of Gentile Christians (essentially, whether they would need to become Jews or not) was made 2000 years ago by the observant JEWISH Christians of the Jerusalem Church (Acts 15), composed of the disciples and many who had actually known Jesus. And what they came up with dovetails quite neatly with the Noahide laws, the expectations of righteous Gentiles since time immemorial.

    As for the sheep and goats, they are the NATIONS that will be held accountable for how they received the least of Christ’s followers whom He sent to them with the gospel, exactly as He spoke about the towns of Israel to whom He sent them first. If you’re concerned about this, you might want to turn your attention to the plight of our imprisoned brethren in North Korea, Pakistan, Nigeria, etc whom no one is visiting, feeding or clothing.

  • Everything is interpretation, that’s simply a given. You’ve been taught a particular way to approach and interpret the OT. That is however not the only way to do so.

    Which gets to my point. We all make choices on how we approach the bible and the faith. We choose denominations, and theologies, etc. All that come with their own approaches, ideas, methods. We can argue which are better or worse.

    I simply wish people would be transparent about that. This is how they approach it. Its not the only way. And to the comments that got this thread started, my way does not decide who is and is not a Christian. My interpretation is not perfect and I don’t get to say “you sin this way, your out”. Its part of the beauty of the creeds. LGBTQ Christians can absolutely affirm the creeds, so can fundamentalist Christians. So we are family and need to work like that. We don’t get to kick those one out we don’t like of find to sinful. Especially when the difference is simply in interpretation methods.

  • You believe those things, do you? Thanks for outing yourself as an antediluvian neanderthal. Now that I know what I’m dealing with it will be allow me to opt out of any future discussion with you as it is clearly worth neither my time nor my effort to expend even a single keystroke with a person of your mindset. Enjoy life in your cave under a rock.

  • When the “there are different interpretations” thing comes up, I am always open to considering and discussing alternate interpretations and seeing how they stand up against scripture. But I rately ever get such an answer, only a reiteration that such alternative interpretations, whatever they may be, exist. I am left with the distinct impression that scriptural accountability is not really desired — although both Jesus and Paul affirmed its importance.

    Indeed we are family, but lying to each other about right and wrong and accepting anything and everything as okey dokey isn’t what family love is about, not did Jesus ever teach such. He says we are to rebuke and hold each other accountable in love, not for the purpose of pushing anyone out but for preserving the whole Body of Christ intact and sound.

  • Because you can’t really marginalize a demographic that is over 80% of your group.

  • Sandi, your beliefs are
    Bountiful Unambiguous Literally Luminous Sincerely Held Infallible Truth.

  • 1 Corinthians 6:9-11English Standard Version (ESV)

    9 Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, 10 nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. 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.

    Romans 1:24 Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. 25 They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen. 26 Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts.Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. 27 In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.

    Galatians 5:19-21
    New International Version (NIV)
    19 The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; 20 idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions 21 and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.

  • 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.

  • “she did not help the poor and needy” – two angels in Lots house that they were trying to sleep with, and then tried to force into homosexual sex.
    There is another verse after that about abominations that I can clarify for you also.
    Actually, it’s about sexual sin – homosexuality.
    There is no such thing as a homosexual Christian. There are repentant sinners who became a new creature in Christ though.

  • Where are you seeing that the angels were poor and needy — as opposed to simply deserving of the hospitality owed to any guest?

  • As I’ve noted before, Jesus did quote from Leviticus (I was corrected on this point by another blogger), but he never *cited* Leviticus by name. Furthermore, the “people of old” would not have understood what we know today as ‘homosexuality’, and Jesus did not condemn men lying with men or men married to men. When Jesus talked about marriage, he was addressing the only kind of marriage understood by his listeners. At their primitive level of existence, they would not have understood otherwise.

  • Do you have data to back this up? National exit polls showed Hillary got 89% of the black vote, which was 12% of the electorate. Compare this to 93% that Obama got in 2016, when blacks were 13% of the electorate. So you may be correct but you’d have to go state by state to figure it out. i.e. did black voters not come out for Hillary in Florida, etc. You’d also have to ask whether Hillary’s numbers were similar to non-Obama Democratic presidential candidates.

  • You are mistaken. Matthew 22:36-40 gives us the “double commandment” (note the singular) in that v. 39 has “The second is like it…” The word “like” introduces equality of importance. As the USCCB commentary observes, “This combination of the two commandments may already have been made in Judaism.”

    Furthermore, you claim these two commandments “have different objects/respondents.” In fact, if scripture is any indication, they do not. See Matthew 25:34-45 where Jesus identifies himself as a fellow person who is in need of help: ” ‘Amen, I say to you, what you did not do for one of these least ones, you did not do for me” (v. 45).

    Jesus has taken two commandments and made them one. When we help someone in need, we are helping Jesus. Why? Because Jesus says so!

  • I did.

    2 Timothy 3:16-17 Wycliffe Bible (WYC)

    16 For all scripture inspired of God is profitable to teach, to reprove, to chastise, [for] to learn in rightwiseness,

    17 that the man of God be perfect, learned to all good work [learned to all good works].

  • They had an entire town wanting to have sex with them.
    Also, “poor and needy” could be comprised of all the people engaging in immorality who they didn’t help away from the wrong.

  • There are a huge number of ways in which scripture is read and interpreted. You can take a more literal reading – its says it so I belive it. You can take a historic, cultural understanding – what was happening, what did people at the time know, how did they write, etc. You can take a Christocentric lens – Jesus is the starting point so everything, including our understanding of God, needs to align with the revelation of who Jesus is and his teaching. Take a cruciform interpretation – everything is read through the lens of the cross and a God who would die for his people. Or you can mix, match and blend them.

    For example, the genocides in the OT.
    Literal – God wanted his people to commit genocide and did
    Historic/Cultural – books of a people history, like the ones in question it he bible, mix mythology and history. They aren’t written as be exact science but rather to tell a story of the history. so while they say they killed everyone, thats not necessarily a fact as much as how they spoke about their battle.
    Christocentric – Jesus says love our enemies so killing them all is outside the Character of God because the perfect representation of God is seen in Jesus. So something else is going on here (see perhaps historic/cultural). Maybe it was shows their misunderstanding of who God is as much as what happened because God is love.

    and on and on.

    But none of it is about how it stands up to scripture as much as what we are taught scripture is, how it is supposed to behave, and who was a taught God is. We find what we’re looking for.

  • “did not help the poor and needy”

    Seems rather clear to me. Talks about over abundance and not helping the poor. Are we to understand that to be “did not help the poor and need to not be gay”.

    Your desire to make it about sexual sin again displays the lack of consistency of interpretation and motivations beyond simply, what the bible says.

  • Understanding hands on the concept of “fulfill.” If the Law of Moses is still in effect, then you cannot be a Christian without circumcision and animal sacrifice with authorized Levites performing the blood rituals.

  • However, it has been well-established through non-biblical history references that the “beloved servant” of the Roman Centurion that Jesus healed was in fact the officer’s gay surrogate lover, so that by their odd values the Officer would remain “faithful” to his only legal wife in Rome. Jesus had to know in advance of the healing that this was the case.

  • Those are requirements for Jews. One need not become a Jew to be a Christian. The Jerusalem Council settled that 2000 years ago. Try to keep up.

  • Nobody “desires” to make the Sodom story about sexual sin. Ezekiel tells is that the root of Sodom’s problems was overabundance and haughtiness, which led to all sorts of “abominations.” There is a great deal in both Talmudic and intertestamental writings, as well as Philo and Josephus, which refers to the gross sexual immorality of Sodom, so this isn’t something modern-day Christians simply made up yesterday.

    Actually Ezekiel’s diagnosis of the root problem makes perfect sense, for the more affluent societies become and the less they have to worry about the more preoccupied they become with trivialities like constant sexual titillation and how one “experiences one’s gender” and such nonsense. Before the Israelites even entered the holy land, in fact, God warned them against following in the footsteps of the immoral Canaanites after they had possessed the land and grown prosperous and wealthy.

  • Hi Teri! Ugh….here we go again! Yang and her Soro’s backed Immigration Table infiltrating the compromising church that is peddling the popular opinions of the cultutre at the cost of souls for eternity. smh

  • Nor “my evangelical leaders.” I mean, Who do they think they are, right? And, most importantly, do they even know what THE Christ Jesus of the gospels, epistles and revelation really thinks of them?

    Don’t you dare call yourselves “leaders” [kathaygaytays in Greek = teacher, guide, instructor], He warns, (1) because “Only One is your Leader, that is, I, the Christ”; and (2) unless “among My people you are merely their servant waiters [diakonos].” To Jesus, you see, the person who truly “leads” [haygeomai] is the one who “slavishly wait on table, serving all and in everything [diakoneo].”

    WHICH ABSOLUTELY ISN’T WHAT ANY OF THESE “50 LEADERS” IS!

    Source: Matthew 23:10-11 and Luke 22:26.

  • SueQT!! Oh I’m so glad you posted here!! Can you believe this? I wonder how I would feel if these “leaders” had called us all to pray for our President? If they had asked us to fast and pray for our nation? They are always “morally superior” and anyone who disagrees with them is, as Jenny Yang put it, “grotesque caricatures of the faith.” Can you imagine what would happen if I called a fellow Christian who voted for Hillary Clinton a “grotesque caricature of the faith?!?” OMW!! These people have taken my faith hostage!! I am really struggling with anger towards Jenny Yang especially. Jesus please help me!! Tim Keller!! Heartbreaking!

  • And again, your lack of understanding exposes itself.
    Here, I’ll help you. The Bible is the Word of God. Christ taught Paul for 3 years in Arabia before he started his ministry (Galatians 1:11-18)
    Paul was a Pharisee of Pharisees so he already knew God’s word.
    Paul conveyed what God wanted said.

  • That hadn’t crossed my mind, but seems like a good idea
    No, it isn’t about my desires anywhere, it was sexual sin.

    Jude 1:7 – In a similar way, Sodom and Gomorrah and the surrounding towns gave themselves up to sexual immorality and perversion. They serve as an example of those who suffer the punishment of eternal fire

    2 Peter 2:6 if by turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah to ashes he condemned them to extinction, making them an example of what is going to happen to the ungodly; 7 and if he rescued righteous Lot, greatly distressed by the sensual conduct of the wicked 8 (for as that righteous man lived among them day after day, he was tormenting his righteous soul over their lawless deeds that he saw and heard);

  • There is a great irony from someone who has pushed against different interpretations to also say that the bible doesn’t mean the sin of Sodom was not helping the poor and needy when the verse says “this was her guilt…but she did not help the poor and needy.”

    It doesn’t say the guilt of Sodom was their sexual impurity or even their arrogance or their abundance but that they did not help the poor.

    It may as well be a direct admonishment of the USA and the American church. All this wealth and abundance but they do not help the poor.

  • Ok, so we’ll just ignore what Ezekiel says then? Isn’t that the thing you’ve been trying to tell me all along we can’t do?

    Also, you are reading sexual immorality in the 2 Peter when all it says is they were ungodly. If we care what Ezekiel says, then what made them ungodly was their lack of care for the poor and needy. It displays your interpretation and what you are reading into the bible

  • No, it’s not. You’re engaging in both eisegesis and anachronism. The Israelites knew nothing of Jesus in any way whatsoever. Why? Because they could not know what had not been mentioned of this God-Man named “Jesus”. They knew only of “God” and related (O.T.) appellations. It was the Incarnation in our Christian belief that would bring a God-Man named Jesus into our world. It was Jesus’ ministry that introduced Jews for the first time to Jesus. Even today, the Jewish faith — as of old — does not hold Jesus to be divine. I remind you that typology/foreshadowing/prefiguring *prove nothing* in terms of New Testament belief. Typology, upon which you rely in part, was a proselytizing tool used by early Christian apologists to encourage Jews to join, and to remain within, the Christian fold.

    If you wish to *believe*, that’s one thing, but actual history demonstrates otherwise.

  • It doesn’t stop there, Philip. It says they were over fed, did not help the poor, were haughty, and “committed abominations.” Look it up.

    And both Peter and Jude had things to say about it as well.

    I’m sorry indeed that your church doesn’t help the poor. Mine does. Perhaps a switch would be in order.

  • “Paul conveyed what God wanted said.”

    No, Paul conveyed what Jesus — and earlier, what “God” — wanted said.

    Your *belief* which informs your understanding is at odds with mainstream Christian doctrine.

  • it says “Thus they were haughty and committed abominations before Me”

    That reads to say that their lack of care for the poor was haughty and an abomination before God. The sin is lack of care for the poor.

    As a nation, the USA is the wealthiest country on the planet yet does so little to care for its poor and needy. The church included. The only reason there is poverty in the USA is because thats what the USA wants. It has the resources and knowledge to sort that if ti cared to, it just doesn’t (much like many countries)

  • no I did. You read it to say what you want. It can easily be interpreted to not be about sexual immorality. Desires of the flesh do not inherently mean sexual immorality. Especially if we take the writings in Ezekiel which talk about over indulgence in food.

    You can read it to be gay people are bad and God hates them. It just not the only way to read it, so it starts to beg the question why is that how you choose to keep reading it? And why such a focus on homosexuality and not alllllllll the other things Jesus explicitly teaches? Seems care for the poor aligns with Jesus and his teaching far more.

  • I don’t have to read into it, thank you. You obviously did not read the scripture.
    Homosexuality is immorality. You want to believe Ezekiel over Jude and Peter, then you only hurt yourself,
    Christ does not hate homosexual. He wants them to renounce their sin and turn to Him – making Him more important than their sin.
    Care for the poor does align with Jesus, after salvation. There are none so poor as those who would prefer to remain in their sin and reject Christ

  • I did, perhaps you should go back and read it again.

    The point of all of this has been from the start that there are multiple ways to interpret the scripture depending on what your looking for, what you’ve been taught, etc.

    I don’t think Jesus hates gay people. I think he loves them, just as they are, just as he made them. I agree he wants them to renounce their sin, but being gay isn’t a sin.

    You can hate gay people. You can tell them they are going to hell. You can even back that up with scripture. But thats not the only way to read the scripture. Just like so many other parts, there is diversity in interpretation. LGTBQ people can be Christians and can go to heaven just as they are.

    Much like you seem to think ones sexual orientation is the marker of their faith in God, Jesus states a number of times, care for the poor shows a heart after him. Until the church takes the teachings of Jesus serious, whatever else they want to preach against is just a clanging gong. Until the church loves it’s enemies, cares for the stranger, visits the prisoner, all the rest is just posturing.

  • So…they were over fed, did not help the poor, were haughty, and did not help the poor. LOL! Sounds like someone REALLY wants to airbrush away God’s guidelines for human sexuality. Wonder why.

    The USA does so little for the poor… that the rest of the world is scrambling to get here. All of the developed nations have mostly eliminated the kind of poverty that all of history’s previous generations would have known. Almost all of America’s poor are adequately housed and nourished, and most have transportation and many amenities. What you are talking about is inequality, which no society has eradicated or likely ever will.

    What would help the poor the most would be some robust job creation and a steep reduction in single parenting. Have you any ideas along those lines?

  • No, they are not as Christ made them. Christ makes clear in Romans 1:26-27 that homosexuality is “unnatural” and a “shameful act”
    ” things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen. 26 Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts.Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. 27 In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.”
    2 Peter makes clear that they were going to Hell because of their “sensual conduct”
    Jude makes clear that they were “sexually immoral”
    Genesis makes clear that they were homosexual.
    That, is what the Bible says.
    Now, you can delude yourself that it says something different.
    Christ does not send Christians to Hell, and He stated in 1 Corinthians and Galatians that they are going to Hell.

    1 Corinthians 6:9-11English Standard Version (ESV)
    9 Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, 10 nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. 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.

    Galatians 5:19-21 New International Version (NIV)
    19 The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; 20 idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions 21 and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.

    He is very clear that they will not see the Kingdom of Heaven.
    Your misrepresenting the gospel to them is what is not loving. Leading them in the direction of Hell, hurts them, and you.
    Christ is faithful and just to forgive our sin, should we turn to Him, repent of our sin, and follow Him. In 1 Corinthians 6:11 – He stated: and such were some of you, but you were washed…..

  • Or its just what it says?

    This was their guilt…she did not help the poor and the needy. Thus they were haughty and committed an abomination before God.

    Where exactly is all the sexual immorality in those verses? Sounds like someone REALLY wants airbrush away what the bible says to support their view on gay people.

    Sure America is better than Syria, but is that really the standard? If compared to other developed nations, its not near the top. It could be if it care about its poor, but it doesn’t. They are not adequately housed and nourished. Not even close. Where are you getting the idea that they are?

    If you want ideas for strong countries, look at the countries doing these things well, specifically the Nordic countries. There are good ideas, American as a country just doesn’t care.

  • If we are back to unrepentant sin then not one person will make it because we are all full of unrepentant sins. Or is being gay the only unrepentant sin that matters?

  • It does not say “thus” but “and.” Clearly there was a lot more going on in Sodom besides garden-variety affluenza — as Genesis, Jude, and ancient collateral sources affirm.

    Where do I get my ideas? How about the Census Bureau’s poverty report?

    https://www.census.gov/prod/2011pubs/p60-239 dot pdf

    How about the USDA reports on “What We Eat in America?”

    https://www.ars.usda.gov/ARSUserFiles/80400530/pdf/0708/Table_4_NIN_POV_07 dot pdf

    How about the fact that nearly half of children outside of the developed world are stunted in growth, while almost no American children are?

    There will never be a meaningful “standard” of poor and non-poor as long as it is a matter of raw numbers divorced from any question of living standards, because someone will always be in the lower percentiles of even the wealthiest societies.

    Now, I repeat, any ideas about job growth or reducing single parenting, which would be guaranteed to take a huge chunk out of what poverty we DO have?

  • Indeed it is Teri! And I’m not on the Trump train (not the Clinton train, or Obama train for that matter), but guess what? I pray for our leaders and always have and always will because it is required of us scripturally. And Jesus’ kingdom is NOT of this world! We are called to pray for all our leaders, to obey the law of the land and be in the world but not of it. From what I am gathering from all these articles we continue to see on here and on other venues–these evangelicals are being manipulated by World Relief, BLM, Open Society (all Soro’s funded)etc….. all with the agenda to turn the “church” into a model of socialism, social justice and some watered down version of Christianity know as the
    “emergent church”. I never imagined in my lifetime that I would see believers soft peddle Jesus like some dime store saint. Holiness is not a requirement anymore to be a follower and the God-breathed words of the holy scripture are only a “guideline” of good ideas and antiquated sayings that can be interpreted to accommodate the culture. Lukewarm and grievous. Hold on tight my friend, the wheat is being separated from the chaff. XO Maranatha!

  • Presumably one could also turn it around, thusly: “Bottom line. If you voted for Clinton, you may be Christian, but you are not moral.” In this past election, solid Christians had a bunch of bad choices (including not voting for either of them) and no good ones. But since when does “evangel” (the gospel) have anything at all with who one votes for? The gospel is not about politics.

  • Oh Phillip – you poor thing! You have run into two of the “God Hats Fags!” people that hang out on this site. They are notorious on the RNS site for their obsessive hatred of gay people. They have made thousands of ant-gay posts on here. They’re both mentally deranged and have declared themselves as God’s Final Authority on all matters. I hope you understand the severity of what you’ve done by disagreeing with those two – you have damned your soul to hell. To be fair, 99.99% of the people on this site are damned to all by those two, so you are in good company.

  • Grateful for you SueQT. What a good word! Needed it! You are a reminder to me of 1 Kings 19:18–7,000 in the land who have not bowed their knees to Baal! Bless you sister!

  • Thus is the translation from the NASB, but we can look at a bunch of others.

    New Living Translation
    Sodom’s sins were pride, gluttony, and laziness, while the poor and needy suffered outside her door. She was proud and committed detestable sins, so I wiped her out, as you have seen.

    English Standard Version
    Behold,
    this was the guilt of your sister Sodom: she and her daughters had
    pride, excess of food, and prosperous ease, but did not aid the poor and
    needy. They were haughty and did an abomination before me. So I removed them, when I saw it.

    New American Standard Bible
    “Behold,
    this was the guilt of your sister Sodom: she and her daughters had
    arrogance, abundant food and careless ease, but she did not help the
    poor and needy. Thus they were haughty and committed abominations before Me. Therefore I removed them when I saw it.

    Christian Standard Bible
    Now
    this was the iniquity of your sister Sodom: She and her daughters had
    pride, plenty of food, and comfortable security, but didn’t support the
    poor and needy. They were haughty and did detestable acts before me, so I removed them when I saw this.

    Contemporary English Version
    They were arrogant and spoiled; they had everything they needed and still refused to help the poor and needy. They thought they were better than everyone else, and they did things I hate. And so I destroyed them.

    There is no “but their real problem was being gay” or “all of those thing pale in comparison to their homosexuality”. It simply lists the issue, they had everything they could need, and their sin, but did nothing to help the needy, and God saw that as haughty and abomination before him.

    I don’t know what you do for work, but I think if you spent much time around people who experience poverty, or professionals who work with people who experience poverty, you’d quickly see they are not well housed or adequately feed. If we want to fix it we could just say since people are made in Gods image they are worth be virtue of simply being a particular standard of living. Universal basic incomes, free housing, etc. Or do people who follow a God of grace need everyone to earn something to prove they deserve it? What would it hurt anyone to just give them all they need?

  • Except to etymologists there is no particular significance, and no theological significance, to the fact that the word “homosexual” entered English from German just over a hundred years ago.

    The biblical texts certainly do mention the topic of homosexuality, and the punishments for practicing it were severe.

  • Simply go to the interlinear examination of the Hebrew text. It makes it quite easy:
    http://biblehub.com/interlinear/ezekiel/16-49 dot htm

    “you’d quickly see they are not well housed or adequately fed” You want government to fix it, but you dismiss the government’s data on the subject. Wonder why?

    “A particular standard of living” is all well and good, but exactly what that is has never been defined yet and never will be because it is a political question. I, for one, would not be entirely opposed to a universal basic income — it probably wouldn’t be any more expensive or wasteful than the system we currently have — but the problem with it is that it would simply become the standard tool for whatever party panders to the lower classes for votes. The party line would shift from “How can you not help the poor?” to “How can you expect the poor to live on X, then Y, then Z,” and so on ad infinitum. And yes, there IS something about work and earning that is beneficial to the human spirit. God created man to have responsibilities; it brings out the best in us. We are told that the Kingdom of God on earth will be a place of energetic and purposeful activity. And even in heaven, we are told we will serve.

  • Again, different groups use different approaches to interpretation (like I’ve already laid out). You’ve chosen one that will show certain things and dismiss others. It’s an approach I disagree with for many reasons but it is a Christian approach. But so is the one I use.

    Perhaps the question is how do we know which is best? I’d suggest its the fruit the theological position produces. What you’re arguing produces death so, I’d suggest you consider a new approach that bring Jesus life to people rather than spiritual death. But thats up to you.

  • I did not refer you to a translation but to the Hebrew. “Wat” is a conjunctive prefix to the verb “committed.” It simply means “and.”

    There is no such thing as “theological fruit.” The fruit of which Jesus speaks is transformation within the life of a believer and is wholly the work of the indwelling Spirit. That God’s word leads to death for some is owing to OUR fallen condition, not to any problem with His word. Jesus called Himself the Stone upon which many would be crushed — by their own choice, not His.

    You can “interpret” a sign that says “bridge washed out” as “proceed with caution,” but you’re going over the edge just the same.

  • nope. Christ took our sin upon us on the cross, for those who are born again. All of our sin were there.
    Homosexuals, not being Christian, do not have that advantage

  • Either it was all sin or it wasn’t. So every sin, save a few you’ve decided aren’t there?

    I just don’t understand why you think certain unrepentant “sin” is more important than others? If unrepentant sin is a sign that you are not a Christian then there are no Christians. If one can have unrepentant sin and be a Christian one can be, using your definitions of sin, gay and a Christian. There’s no other way to slice it. Either God can’t forgive unrepentant sin for those who love him or he can.

  • I think it’s interesting that you understand better what the verse should read than all of the translators involved in all of the translations I provided. That you know what the word in that context is and what it is trying to convey. You’re essentially saying “we cannot trust the bible we have” which is interesting since you’ve been telling me to simply look at the scripture and let it speak for itself.

    If acting out a particular theology brings death that is an indictment of that theology. It means its missed Jesus, because Jesus brings life. It’s really that simple.

  • It wasn’t all sin, Philip. One needs to accept Christ as their Lord and Savior, which means, turning to Him, repenting of your sin, and following Him. If you want to remain in your sin and just hope he’ll let you grab His coattails, He won’t.
    One means to embarking in a relationship with Christ:

    “Father, I know that I have broken your laws and my sins have separated me from you. I am truly sorry, and now I want to turn away from my past sinful life toward you. Please forgive me, and help me avoid sinning again. I believe that your son, Jesus Christ died for my sins, was resurrected from the dead, is alive, and hears my prayer. I invite Jesus to become the Lord of my life, to rule and reign in my heart from this day forward. Please send your Holy Spirit to help me obey You, and to do Your will for the rest of my life. In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.”
    Then begin a regimen of Bible reading and church attendance, along with regular prayer, and one is a Christian. Then, your sins are forgiven, and not until then. A.s a Christian, every time you sin, you confess it to Christ and move on. That is repentant sin.
    If you are rejecting Christ, He will allow you to, but that also means that one’s sins are not forgiven, and they are termed “unrepentant”.
    Homosexuals are not Christian in that they have not repented of their sin.
    I trust this is clearer for you.

  • Ok so if you have any sin in your life that you haven’t asked for forgiveness for or are unrepentant about (even if you don’t know about it or are taught differently) you are not a Christian and will burn for ever in hell? That sum it up?

  • The part where you said after we sin we confess it. What if we don’t? What if we didn’t know it was sin? What if we forget? Are we still going to hell?

    Because you’ve been saying if you sin, your not a Christian. If you live in unrepentant sin your not a Christian.

    So super clear question: if you have unrepentant sin in your life are you a Christian?

  • Not even close. Trump has been a corrupt racist for nearly 50 years. The only way you could have voted for him is to ignore that huge history of racism, misogyny, and corrupt business practices. Even Faux news could not invent that level of corruption. We are now watching our country being destroyed from within. No, Clinton was an very good choice.

  • Take the comma out of your last sentence, and I’m with you: “No Clinton was a very good choice.”

  • Again, I did not refer you to a TRANSLATION. I referred you to the Hebrew, which is wat·ta·‘ă·śe·nāh. Go consult a Hebrew lexicon and decide for yourself what a “wat” attached as a prefix to a verb signifies if you actually want to know and don’t believe me.

    Jesus brings life to those who receive Him. For the rest, the news is not so good:

    For it stands in Scripture: “See, I lay in Zion a stone, a chosen and precious cornerstone; and the one who believes in Him will never be put to shame.” To you who believe, then, this stone is precious. But to those who do not believe, “The stone the builders rejected has become the cornerstone,” and, “A stone of stumbling and a rock of offense.” They stumble because they disobey the message—and to this they were appointed. 1Peter 2:7.

    No doubt Peter was remembering Jesus saying of Himself: “Anyone who falls on this stone will be broken to pieces; anyone on whom it falls will be crushed.” Matt.21:44.

    Are you prepared to call it an ‘indictment” of Christ that many are going to be broken to pieces upon Him? You wouldn’t be the first.

  • I know you didn’t reference a translation. I’m just noting how you are saying you know more about Hebrew than everyone involved in all of the translations I noted, because they didn’t translate it to say what you are. So if I must choose between your ability to translate and the collective works of many scholars across numerous times, theologies, and teams, I’ll take theirs.

    I’m prepared to call it an indictment of theology that doesn’t produce what Jesus said it would. He is the water of life, his yoke is easy and his burden light, he came to be life and life more abundant.
    A good tree bares good fruit. Good theology bear good fruit. Death, both spiritual and physical, is bad fruit of destructive theology.

    If you think people who are desperately trying to live like Jesus and live the life he calls us to should end up killing themselves that’s your call. I’m saying if that’s where the theology leads (as non-affirming theology does) is bad theology.

  • “So if I must choose between your ability to translate and the collective works of many scholars across numerous times, theologies, and teams, I’ll take theirs.” That’s rather funny. Just a few posts ago you dismissed the many scholars who composed the Talmud and the intertestamental writings, as well as the extremely well-educated historians Philo and Josephus who doubtless had access to many records and materials now lost, who all agreed that Sodom was known for having a problem with gross sexual immorality. And now feel you must take issue with the Hebrew lexicon itself. Wonder why?

    “A good tree bares good fruit. Good theology bear good fruit. Death, both spiritual and physical, is bad fruit of destructive theology.” Philip, PEOPLE bear fruit through the transformative work of the Spirit, not theology. Jesus came to give us eternal life, not make us comfortable in our sin — and compared with the inestimable value of life eternal, the burden upon our flesh IS easy and light. The flesh, as He put, it, profits nothing, and He made it quite clear that it would very often be required of His followers.

    Why do you think the disciples and the other early heroes of the faith went to their deaths with songs of praise on their lips, instead of wringing their hands over the “bad fruit” and death and trouble their “theology” had produced?

    “In the world you shall have tribulation. But be of good cheer — I have overcome the world.” John 16:33

  • “Although pre-Christian Jewish thought envisaged intermediaries between God and the World, there are no demonstrable antecedents for the notion of Christ’s fully personal preexistence as the Son of God and Logos who truly ‘descends’ to earth. In pre-Christian Judaism, Wisdom and the Logos are only vivid metaphors for God’s attributes and activities.”

    “The Old Testament spoke of the Logos as the creative power and personified self-revelation of God…..In Johannine thought, the Logos is the preexistent divine Word through whom ‘all things were made’ and who ‘became flesh and dwelt among us’…..After Nicaea, ‘Logos’ and ‘Son of God’ were used interchangeably for the second person of the Trinity.”

    The term “Son of God” was “[u]sed in the OT of angels, the chosen people…, and sometimes of such individuals as the anointed king…and righteous individuals (but never of prophets) to indicate a special relationship to God and vocation from God…..Jesus never called himself the Son of God, but at least three times he implied that he was the Son…..From the time of the First Council of Nicaea (325), Son of God became (with Lord) the central high title for Jesus.”

    The term “Son of Man” is “used repeatedly in Ezekiel to indicate someone who is weak and mortal (i.e., the prophet) and once in Daniel to point to a heavenly, apocalyptic figure…..Jesus repeatedly applied this designation to himself…..Outside the Synoptic Gospels, the title hardly appears; the proclamation and teaching of the early church preferred Son of God, Lord, and Christ.”

  • the “Son of God”, when He used that term indicated that He gave Himself equality with God, to begin with.
    Secondly, “there are no demonstrable antecedents for the notion of Christ’s fully personal preexistence as the Son of God and Logos who truly ‘descends’ to earth” He is quoted as saying, “Before Abraham was, I am”

  • You would need to take that up with the Lord. He’s the One who taught that a homosexual, et al, would not see the Kingdom of Heaven.

    1 Corinthians 6:9-11English Standard Version (ESV)
    9 Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, 10 nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. 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.

    Galatians 5:19-21New International Version (NIV)
    19 The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; 20 idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions 21 and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.

    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.

  • Thanks. I admire your godly persistence (in the face of ungodly resistance). You’ve got more irenic patience than I do!

  • I think it’s interesting you pick out homosexuality but don’t say anyone who is an idolatrous for instance isn’t a Christian.

    You just seem iodly focused on how any sin can be forgiven for a Christian and it’s God’s grace can’t cover unrepentant sin in you, but not gay people.

  • homosexuals are idolators Philip and homosexuality can be forgiven, one just needs to repent and follow Christ, I think for the third time

  • Ok, but it’s all idolators who aren’t Christians right? Like thaoe who live money, or power, or anything more than God? None of them are Christians in the quality you describe it.

  • You & SueQT should hang here more at St. RNS with other Bible Christians like Edward Borges-Silva, sandinwindsor, Shawnie5, floydlee. No not to fend off Progressive Christians and Atheists, but build the body of Christ up, you know? Just a thought.

  • No absolutely me along with everyone else. No one is perfect, none without sin, none who doesn’t place things before God (idols). We allbhave them. Perhaps your too fixated on others to see your own.

  • What you do not understand is a Christian repents and confesses their sin. They just don’t expect Christ to wink at it and move on.

  • no I’m saying none are perfect. none has repented of everything , removed all their idols, stopped all theit unrepentant sin. those things being in a person and not the indicators of one being a Christian because those things are in all of us

  • We are not discussing Jesus’ equality with God, etc. We are not discussing the Trinity, etc.

    Please cite even a single quote from MATTHEW, MARK, LUKE, or JOHN where Jesus tells his listeners that he himself, i.e., *as Jesus*, taught their Israelite ancestors. In addition, please cite even a single passage from the Old Testament that portrays *Jesus himself* walking among the Israelites.

    Again, you are engaging in eisegesis and anachronism.

  • And again, my question, why do you want to confine Christ’s words to Matthew Mark Luke and John?

  • never said it was bad or unnecessary, just that you’ll never repent of everything, never be perfect so you’d better hope your salvation is based on more than your ability to repent or be perfect.

    it should be based in Jesus and part of you becoming like him. But if it’s that then people who sin, people who have unrepentant sin, anyone really can be a Christian if they are moving towards Christ

  • My salvation is all through Jesus. There is not a thing one can do to be saved. Jesus will not take someone who has no regard for obedience to Him, or love for Him. He doesn’t work that way.

  • “[W]hy do [I] want to confine Christ’s words to Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John?”

    Up to now, I have used the name “Jesus”, which means “God saves”. The word “Christ”, on the other hand, means “Messiah” or, in English, “anointed”. Suffice to say “Messiah” has a varied usage in ancient Israelite/Jewish history. Ultimately, its use in Christianity is derived from typology, which, as I’ve noted elsewhere, proves nothing in terms of the Gospel. The online CATHOLIC ENCYCLOPEDIA offers, inter alia, information about “Messianic doctrine in late Judaism”:

    “Two quite distinct and parallel lines are discernible in the later development of Messianic doctrine among the Jews, according as the writers clung to a national ideal, based on the literal interpretation of the earlier prophecies, or an apocalyptic ideal, based principally on Daniel. The national ideal looked to the establishment on earth of the Kingdom of God under the Son of David, the conquest and subjugation of the heathen, the rebuilding of Jerusalem and the Temple, and the gathering in of the Dispersed. The apocalyptic ideal drew a sharp distinction between aion outos [the present age] and aion mellon [the age to come]. The future age was to be ushered in by the Divine judgment of mankind preceded by the resurrection of the dead. The Messiah, existing from the beginning of the world, should appear at the consummation, and then should be also manifested the heavenly Jerusalem which was to be the abode of the blessed” (http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/10212c.htm; brackets added).

    So, in reply to your question: I “confine” Jesus’/Christ’s words to the canonical gospels because they are the principal sources for the life and teaching of the man named “Jesus”. These four gospels give us Jesus’ words (or at least what various communities remembered Jesus having said). This man, whom we *believe* to be the second person of the Trinity, never claims to have spoken *as Jesus* to the Israelites or to *have walked* among them. In other words, he claims no earthly ministry to the Israelites of old.

  • Christ spoke from the Book of Genesis to the Book of Revelation, so, it seems you only want the informations where the gay blogs say there isn’t any – to their loss also.

  • Up to now, I have used the name “Jesus”, which means “God saves”. The word “Christ”, on the other hand, means “Messiah” or, in English, “anointed”. Suffice to say “Messiah” has a complex history in ancient Israelite/Jewish usage. Ultimately, its use in Christianity is derived from typology, which, as noted before, proves nothing in terms of basic doctrine from the Gospel. The online CATHOLIC ENCYCLOPEDIA offers, inter alia, information about “Messianic doctrine in late Judaism”:

    “Two quite distinct and parallel lines are discernible in the later development of Messianic doctrine among the Jews, according as the writers clung to a national ideal, based on the literal interpretation of the earlier prophecies, or an apocalyptic ideal, based principally on Daniel. The national ideal looked to the establishment on earth of the Kingdom of God under the Son of David, the conquest and subjugation of the heathen, the rebuilding of Jerusalem and the Temple, and the gathering in of the Dispersed. The apocalyptic ideal drew a sharp distinction between aion outos [the present age] and aion mellon [the age to come]. The future age was to be ushered in by the Divine judgment of mankind preceded by the resurrection of the dead. The Messiah, existing from the beginning of the world, should appear at the consummation, and then should be also manifested the heavenly Jerusalem which was to be the abode of the blessed” (http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/10212c.htm; brackets added).

    So, in reply to your question: I confine Jesus’/Christ’s words to the canonical gospels because they are the principal sources for the life and teaching of the man named “Jesus”. This man, whom we *believe* to be the second person of the Trinity, never claims to have spoken *as Jesus* to the Israelites or to *have walked* among them. He speaks of God in the third person.

  • Why your mention of “gay blogs”? What have they to do with our discussion??? (I’m “straight”, by the way, although I have gay friends and support same-sex marriage.)

    Contrary to your apparent accusation, I do not “try to separate Jesus from the Christ.” I appreciate the complex history of how the two terms came about, and I embrace Jesus as my divine Savior.

    Shame on you for trying to apply 1 John 2:22 to me. I am not the anti-Christ.

  • as long as you stay perfect. if you don’t then you show no live for him and in all his grace he will cast you out to burn in hell.

    your turning in circles. Jesus saves except when he doesn’t and forgives expect when he can’t based in your actions execept when it’s not. You think being gay is unrepentant sin but not the very things Jesus himself says will cause him to say “depart from me I never knew you” It just hate for LGBT people wrapped up in religious words.

    Its been many days of your inconsistent application of theology. I think it’s best we be done.

  • So you prefer destroying our nation. That is what is happening now. I am glad I am not on active duty now. I would be ashamed to walk in Europe in uniform now. Again, you may be a Christian and vote Trump, but you are not moral.

  • Because of the religious Trump vote, the young are leaving Christianity. You have lost a generation with this vote.

  • “Destroying our nation”? In your imagination! Hillary’s legendary “competence” was as much a delusion as her “inevitable victory,” another fantasy which was ginned up by the media – and certainly not by her record.

    I’m always amazed at the casual ease with which progressives divine (i.e., “assign”) the deepest interior motives of their opponents: “the NRA wants to kill children; pro-life activists want to make poor women suffer; strong border proponents hate Mexicans;” etc., etc.

    Maybe some day I’ll understand why arguments with progressives and liberals always devolve into dogmatic assertions of moral superiority on their part: “You’re not just mistaken, you’re secretly a bigot…you’re not just wrong, you’re evil – and I’m not, so I’m able to see through your duplicitous disguise.” Eventually, one begins to suspect that mounting the moral high horse is really the point of it all. So enjoy the exalted view…of yourself.

  • To answer your last paragraph, in general we are superior, when it comes to morals. Somehow, you think it is right to elect a person whose entire public persona, and his campaign is based on racism. You do not care that the country is now second rate. Germany is now the leader of the free world.

  • “…in general we are superior, when it comes to morals.”

    Precious! Thanks for confirming my assessment that mounting your moral high horse really IS the point of it all. Like most Progressives, you apparently think if you “look down” on everybody else, they’ll have to “look up” to you. And that fabricated sense of moral superiority is critical to your personal identity, isn’t it?

  • Yes, we do look down on someone who could see the years of racism (Birtherism, redlining, Central Park), the inciting violence, the name-calling, etc. and vote for Trump. Now you continue to support him after the damage he has caused to our nation. Yes, we are superior. I am glad you acknowledge it.

  • What I acknowledged (and you confirmed) was your own moral arrogance. That’s not only what’s happening, it’s ALL that’s happening.

  • What “facts” – that “Trump has been a corrupt racist for 50 years…”, that his “entire public persona, and his campaign is based on racism.,” and that I am “not moral”? Those are not “facts,” they’re your moral judgments. The “fact” is that you have no access to the inner lives of those you condemn for their inner lives, and the “fact” that you claim to is a self-serving fantasy.

  • Birtherism, Redlining, Central Park Five, Mexicans are rapists, Muslim ban, Grab em by the pussy, Miss Universe, Mocking Gold Star families, Mocking McCain, Mocking the handicapped, not paying contractors, Trump U. Any one of these should completely prevent anyone from being elected to any office.

  • Those are not “facts” they are the names of controversies. The only “fact” you’ve demonstrated so far is the fact that you think Trump, and his supporters, are bad people – but that you are not, which gives you the moral standing to pass judgment on the inner lives and subjective condition of people you’ve never met. That’s the only “fact” you’ve put on display here. By not only confessing to that fact, but stressing that you actually take pride in it, you’ve made my point more clearly than I ever could.

    Point made;

    Point demonstrated;

    Point established.

    Thank you and good night!

  • Thanks for proving my point. There is no controversy about the reality of any of these. By denying what we all saw for years on television, you prove the willful ignorance of your kind. You are the problem with this country, and the cause of the decline of our country. You should be ashamed of yourself.

  • I do notice that you attack me rather than addressing the behavior of your hero. Good attempt at diversion.

  • All I did was to point out that you are elevating yourself SO THAT you can look down on your opposition. Your political passions are governed by your personal need to see yourself as superior to others…and YOU have provided all the material for making that observation.

  • Again, you are focusing on me, rather than the behavior of Trump. Basic diversion.

  • Well, yes. Actually, this dispute has never been about anything else. My point from the beginning has been that your need to feel superior to those you disagree with makes you label them as “evil,” so you don’t have to deal with their ideas. That’s why I didn’t “focus” on Trump. That’s YOUR diversion – and another discussion for another time, perhaps, but I’m sticking to the point I originally made…which is, indeed, about you.

  • Still trying to divert from the fact that you elected the most corrupt and immoral president ever. He is bringing the destruction of the country.

  • Why would I divert attention away from your political opinions? On the contrary, my point has been that your political opinions are shaped by the need to see yourself as morally superior to your rhetorical opponents. That’s why you take your opinions as “facts.” And for crying out loud, consult some political history before you come up with exaggerations like “the most corrupt and immoral president ever.” The emotional source of your opinions shows itself clearly in that kind of hyperbolic overstatement – subverting your credibility and supporting my observation.

  • And by the way, Trump didn’t “bring” anything, much less “the destruction of the country.” He simply exposed the destruction and division wrought by several previous administrations — both Republican and Democrat.

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