An Open Letter to the Church from My Generation

Church,

I got to go to the Macklemore concert on Friday night. If you want to hear about how that went, ask me, seriously, I want to talk about it until I die. The whole thing was great; but the best part was when Macklemore sang “Same Love.” Augustana’s gym was filled to the ceiling with 5,000 people, mostly aged 18-25, and decked out in thrift store gear (American flag bro-tanks, neon Nikes, MC Hammer pants. My Cowboy boyfriend wore Cowboy boots…not ironically….). The arena was brimming with excitement and adrenaline during every song, but when he started to play “Same Love,” the place about collapsed. Why? While the song is popular everywhere, no one, maybe not even Macklemore, feels its true tension like we do in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. If you’re not familiar, here’s the song:

Stop–did you watch it? Watch it.

Before the song, Macklemore spoke really simple words along the lines of: “Hey, you can all have your own opinions on how we treat gay people in this country, but this is mine.” And I held my breath in anticipation of some kind of uproar or walk-out…but the crowd cheered louder than they had yet. In our red state, in our conservative little city, the 5,000 young people in that arena wanted to hear about marriage equality.

During the song, almost every person at the concert had their hands up and their eyes closed…it reminded me of church. The whole crowd spoke every word with Macklemore. We were thirsty for those words. We want to hear about equality and love in a gentle way. We’re sick of the harsh words of both sides. Say what you want about my generation, but we can smell fake from a mile away. This rapper from Seattle had brought us truth in song form, and we all knew it. I live in such a conservative bubble that I couldn’t believe the crowd’s positive, thankful reaction. But I shouldn’t have been surprised. No one knows the tension of that song like my generation in South Dakota does. So many of us were brought up in churches and Christian homes, and even if we weren’t, we’ve experienced the traditional Christian culture that just resonates from South Dakota’s prairie land. We know conservatism; we know tradition. But we also have Twitter, we watch SNL, we listen to Macklemore, and we read Tina Fey. We’re more in touch with the rest of the country than the Midwest has ever been. Some of us love the church and some of us hate it, but there aren’t too many people for whom it’s irrelevant. So when Macklemore takes on that tension with his poetry, his South Dakota audience listened. We practically yelled with him when he spoke the lyrics:

“When I was at church, they taught me something else: if you preach hate at the service, those words aren’t anointed. That holy water that you soak in has been poisoned.”

We yelled because we knew that holy water too well. We knew that hateful preaching too well. We had all been hurt by it in one way or another.

My point in writing this isn’t to protect gay people. Things are changing—the world is becoming a safer place for my gay friends. They’re going to get equal rights. I’m writing this because I’m worried about the safety of the Church. The Church keeps scratching its head, wondering why 70% of 23-30 year-olds who were brought up in church leave. I’m going to offer a pretty candid answer, and it’s going to make some people upset, but I care about the Church too much to be quiet. We’re scared of change. We always have been. When scientists proposed that the Earth could be moving through space, church bishops condemned the teaching, citing Psalm 104:5 to say that God “set the earth on its foundations; it can never be moved.” But the scientific theory continued, and the Church still exists. I’m saying this: we cannot keep pitting the church against humanity, or progress. DON’T hear me saying that we can’t fight culture on anything. Lots of things in culture are absolutely contradictory to love and equality, and we should be battling those things. The way culture treats women, or pornography? Get AT that, church. I’ll be right there with you. But my generation, the generation that can smell bullshit, especially holy bullshit, from a mile away, will not stick around to see the church fight gay marriage against our better judgment. It’s my generation who is overwhelmingly supporting marriage equality, and Church, as a young person and as a theologian, it is not in your best interest to give them that ultimatum.

My whole life, I’ve been told again and again that Christianity is not conducive with homosexuality. It just doesn’t work out. I was forced to choose between the love I had for my gay friends and so-called biblical authority. I chose gay people, and I’m willing to wager I’m not the only one. I said, “If the Bible really says this about gay people, I’m not too keen on trusting what it says about God.” And I left my church. It has only been lately that I have seen evidence that the Bible could be saying something completely different about love and equality.

So, my advice to you, the Church: if you’re looking for some intelligent biblical liberal opinions on the subject, have a little coffee chat with your local Methodist or Episcopal pastor. Christians can be all about gay people, it’s possible. People do it every day with a clear biblical conscience. Find out if you think there’s truth in that view before you sweep us under the rug. You CAN have a conservative view on gay marriage, or gay ordination. You can. But I want you to have some serious conversations with God, your friends that disagree with you, and maybe even some gay people, Christians or not, before you decide that this one view is worth marginalizing my generation. Weigh those politics against what you’re giving up: us. We want to stay in your churches, we want to hear about your Jesus, but it’s hard to hear about love from a God who doesn’t love our gay friends (and we all have gay friends). Help us find love in the church before we look for it outside.

Oh, and can we please please PLEASE stop changing our Facebook profile pictures to crosses in a protest against gay marriage? You are taking a symbol of hope and redemption and using it to make a political point. No matter what you think, that has to stop. It’s a misrepresentation of what that symbol means.

Love,

A College Kid Who Misses You

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4,421 thoughts on “An Open Letter to the Church from My Generation

  1. I appreciate the heart behind this conversation. However, while I very much love my homosexual friends, and support their rights, I still believe that homosexuality is a sin. It is stated so clearly in the Bible.
    I am not overly concerned with politics in this area, sin is an issue of the heart’s separation from God, and cannot be forced by outside forces. So I say, give people the right to hate God, Give them the right to sin in whatever way that want to. After all, isn’t that what God did when He gave us free will?
    I completely agree that the Church should be more loving and open to the LGBT community, and that we should love them unconditionally. period. However, I say this in the same breath that I would say that the church should accept alcoholics, homeless people, gluttons, thieves, and liars. I do not mean to sound harsh in these categorizations, but we have ALL sinned and fall short of the glory of God. We ALL Need redemption. God is in the business of saving us from ourselves. That being said, I do believe that homosexuality is a sin.
    I have talked with many of my homosexual friends on this issue, and my heart breaks for them. I believe that God loves them too much to leave them the way that they are. But there is no way that I will condemn them. How can I, a selfish broken girl with a porn addiction and an extreme tendency toward gluttony, lust, and laziness, judge? That is not my role. Instead, I think the most important that our LGBT brothers and sisters know is that God is madly, crazily, and irrevocably in love with them. I simply want to introduce them to my boy Jesus, show them how crazily He loves them, and let Him do the rest. It’s not my job to change their heart, it’s His. I believe that if they earnestly seek Him, He will make it clear if He has a problem with their lifestyle. Just as with every other area of life, if God sees something in your heart that is keeping you from Him, He will, in his perfect way place a gentle conviction on your heart. NOT guilt, and NOT condemnation, but gentle conviction. HE will give you the desire, drive, and strength to change.

    Psalm 37:4 says: Take delight in the Lord,
    and he will give you the desires of your heart.

    Many would give the argument that homosexuality is not a choice, that they were born that way. However, alcoholism can also be considered a genetic problem. Someone born with a tendency toward alcoholism can still chose to never touch a drop of alcohol. However, the root of these issues lie in the heart. Satan does his very best to distort the desires that God created in our hearts, twisting them into completely unholy habits that attempt to fill these desires. For example, God created us to love food, yet gluttony consumes so many in today’s culture. So should we put laws into action monitoring everyone’s eating habits? No! God created in us the desire to love, be loved, and have physical intimacy with another person of the opposite sex. (His words, not mine)
    Please understand that I say these opinions with the humblest of attitudes. I do not for a second think that I know all of the answers, or have it all figured out. Realistically, this is a quick response that I have not had much time to edit and review. However, this is my current understanding through my study of the word that I have on the subject. I look forward to continuing to hear from the rest of you.

    • Alex Cherry says:

      Hey, I’ll take it. Yes, I’m still going to think you’re a bigot, but at least you’re a properly American bigot, who believes that everyone has the right to live their own way, even if you think it’s wrong.

      • Alex, I respect your opinion about me. However, I feel that I must respond with a couple of thoughts.

        The definition of a bigot is: “A person who is obstinately or intolerantly devoted to his or her own opinions and prejudices; especially : one who regards or treats the members of a group (as a racial or ethnic group) with hatred and intolerance.”

        1) I made it very clear at the end that I do not have all of the answers, I simply shared my honest opinion in an attempt to challenge my views and further the discussion. I’m here to learn.

        2) The overtones of hatred and intolerance to the this word very much
        hurt my heart. Those two things are the exact opposite of everything I’m about. Yes. I disagree with the homosexual lifestyle. I also disagree with some of the grades I receive from my professors, some opinions that I hear about my favorite musicians, and some quotes that I find on twitter. But I think that we can all learn from each other, and my disagreement with those things do not change my opinions about the people behind them. Everyone is misguided about something. In this case, maybe it’s you, and maybe it’s me. Either way….it has to be one of us. Frankly, I don’t care which one it is….but I’m going to keep praying and studying in an attempt to find out.

        Therefore, I respect your right to think whatever you would like about me, but I really think that bigot is a harsh word to use in this environment. I’m just trying to seek God’s truth to the best of my ability. I’m completely willing to be wrong. Thanks :)

        • idahogie says:

          I certainly don’t think “bigot” is a harsh word to use when a group of privileged people is trying actively to deny happiness to another minority group based only on a mythology.

          Heather — you are helping to deny people happiness. You don’t have to be that way. But you are choosing to do it. That makes you bigoted. Pray all you want. I’d rather that you started thinking instead.

          • idahogie – One question for you… How am I denying anyone happiness?

          • idahogie says:

            I apologize if I have made assumptions about you. I have been interacting with several people here on this thread, and may have mixed up some attributes. However, I get the impression that you believe that homosexuality is a sin. My answer here is based on that alone.

            You are helping to perpetuate a horrible attitude that has the result of creating a hostile environment for gay people. Gays are denied rights freely available to others. Gays are subjected to physical threats, familial estrangement, and less-than-full life expression because of the prevailing anti-gay environment — created by those who think that their mythology is relevant today. Gays have many barriers that the rest of us can only imagine. Their happiness is much diminished because of backwards attitudes primarily perpetuated by theistic and conservative busybodies who want to control others.

            Again — my apologies if I have mischaracterized your views. And I am generalizing, too. Not all theistic types or conservative types are bad. But the bad people who have created the negative environment are theistic, or conservative, or both.

          • Alex Cherry says:

            I’d be a lot happier – and safer – if I could marry my boyfriend. I could enjoy the protections of the law, knowing that I could visit him in the hospital if the worst should happen, that I could make medical decisions when the time came.

            I would like to know that when we choose to have a child, be it by adoption, surrogacy, or some other method, that we are both legally the parent, and my child is afforded the same protection in the event of tragedy as the child of any other couple.

            I’d like to know that I can’t lose my job because of who I love. I’d like to know that children weren’t killing themselves because of your hate.

            Just off the top of my head, those are some of the ways you’re denying us happiness.

          • idahogie says:

            Using the phrase “the homosexual lifestyle” is a dead giveaway. You should not use it if you don’t want to be considered a bigot. There is no “homosexual lifestyle.” There are only people who want to live their lives in peace and happiness.

          • idahogie – Thank you for your apology :) I very much understand that there are a LOT of different people on this thread. :)

            I’m not going to lie, I do see homosexuality as a sin. I pretty much take the Bible for what it says, so call me a thick skulled fundamentalist if you must. :)

            Secondly, this is the ONLY place that I have ever voiced my opinion. Frankly, my opinion on this doesn’t matter to anyone, and I attempt to love and support my homosexual brothers and sisters with every interaction that I have. If you were to meet me in person, you would never know that I don’t agree with it. Frankly, it just doesn’t matter. I also don’t agree with my mother’s addiction to alcohol. Do I love her any less or let anything bad happen to her, or even vote against beer sale? No. That’s stupid. I completetly agree with you my friend :) I only want them to be happy. I suppose I am just searching for Truth (it should be noted that I am searching because I don’t know the answers) on this subject. I care about their happiness so much that I want them to have the best possible relationship with God. That’s all I’m saying.

            Next, let me say, that the ONLY reason I am even on this blog right now is because I want to learn how to love my homosexual brothers and sisters better. The End.

            Finally, thank you for your correction my friend. I was unaware that “homosexual lifestyle” would be viewed as a derogatory term. I simply meant by that term that a person would be choosing to have sex with another person of the same gender. I will no longer use this phrase :)

        • Alex Cherry says:

          Bigot is a harsh word, you’re right. That doesn’t make it inappropriate. You “disagree” with “the homosexual lifestyle”. That’s like “disagreeing” with “the black lifestyle.” It’s insulting and presumptuous of you to label my unchangeable sexual orientation as a “lifestyle” that you can “disagree” with. That’s why it’s bigotry; you disapprove of an unchangeable and intrinsic part of my biological and physiological makeup.

    • It is the gift of God, so that no man may boast. says:

      Can I ask why your heart breaks for us?

      • Dear Friend,

        That is a really great, thought provoking question. Thank you!

        In all honesty, I think I say this because of my experience with the homosexuals in my life. Every homosexual person that I have had a deep relationship with has been discernably broken. I have faced with them feelings of hopelessness, desperation, aching, and deep pain. It’s difficult for me to explain this adequately. However, I will use an illustration that is separated from the homosexual lifestyle. I have observed so many empty lifestyles filled with partying, casual hookups, alcoholism, and greed. These people are all grasping desperately for something to fill the aching hole in their heart, and are turning to the wrong things (less than what God intended). Take me for example, when my heart drifts from God I try to fill the hole with gluttony, lust, empty conversations, and attention. These things are not God’s best for me, yet I turn to them for comfort because that is what my flesh wants to do. I think it’s the same type of thing with homosexuality…. I don’t believe that it’s God’s best…. he created man and woman for a reason.

        Honestly, I don’t really care one way or another who falls in love with who. I also think it’s less than God’s best for us to be in abusive relationships, have sex outside of marriage, and to be unequally yoked. Call me old fashioned, I’m just trying to live by the scriptures.

        However, I’m afraid that I am coming off extremely legalistic…I’m really not! I simply take the Bible for it’s word. However, the most important point that I’m trying to convey is the heart behind God’s word. Bottom line, I believe that a homosexual lifestyle is not God’s best for your life. (I am not judging, because I have SO many things that I am equally at fault for)

        I am not condemning homosexuality, please don’t think that I am. However, I don’t believe that it is God’s plan for our lives, there is nothing that I have read in the Bible that would say homosexuality is alright…. if it’s there..please point it out to me….

        God’s power shines through our weaknesses. But we must allow Him to enter our weaknesses first, to do this, we must admit that they are weaknesses.

        I stand by my initial comment that I believe each person should find the answer to these types of questions from God….If he has a problem with your lifestyle, if you EARNESTLY seek Him, he will let you know the answer.

        • Kathy says:

          “Every homosexual person that I have had a deep relationship with has been discernably broken. I have faced with them feelings of hopelessness, desperation, aching, and deep pain. It’s difficult for me to explain this adequately.”
          That is interesting because many homosexuals I know are amazing people who love and care about others. They are generous and thoughtful and happy with partners they have loved for numerous years. Many attend church and worship just as you do.
          If many in the population of homosexuals tend to have issues with substance abuse or hopelessness or desperation or pain – perhaps it is because many have not been allowed to openly love, have been turned away by the very people who are supposed to protect them, or because they have been teased, bullied, beaten or people like them murdered simply because of who they are. Do you think maybe society has created these feelings of ‘desperation’ rather than the fact they are gay?
          I’d bet on it.

          • Dear Kathy,

            Thank you for your response :)

            I would agree with that. In fact, every homosexual person that I have met….scratch that…most :) lol are incredibly wonderful people that I love and respect. I can think of one of the top of my head who I absolutely love worshiping and doing devotional time with. Another that is the most generous person I have ever met. And one who simply makes my day brighter every time I get the chance to see him. I love these people SO much.

            It is very fair that I have not had the opportunity to experience theses people live in committed relationships

            Let’s take a look at Galatians 5 for a second

            “6 So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. 17 For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever[c] you want. 18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.

            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.

            22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. 24 Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25 Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit.”

            Sorry for the long passage, but I think this is critically important. The Bible says in this passage that we will be able to discern the state of a person’s heart by their lifestyle. I generally look at the fruits of the rest of their lives and can tell most of my homosexual friends are not that close to God. Is it because they’re rebelling from the line of thought that condemns them…probably. Is it because of all the reasons that you said…quite possibly. I don’t deny that. Our culture treats homosexuals like trash and it makes me sick. However, I think that, no matter what our fruits reveal the state of our heart. Let’s look at me for example. I was bullied all my life for being fat. (It is a faulty comparison, I am aware, but work with me). But I can chose to drench those problems with temporary fixes, or I can put my big girl pants on, move on, and rely on God to fix my wounded heart. I’ll be honest, my homosexual friends are generally not that far separated from anyone else in most of these categories. However, I think that it would be prudent for any homosexual person to consider this list, and see if their lifestyle produces more good or bad fruit, and then ask God to fix the bad.

            I will not back down in my statement that I think homosexuality is less than God’s intention. I’m sorry, but I refuse to lie about what I believe. However, I also believe that it is between an individual and God. Honestly, I don’t care how they live their life, I just really hope that they are pursuing God. (For the record, many of my straight friends are in the same boat…this is a deeper issue than who you decide to sleep with)

            ps. Random tangent. Homosexuality, in a Biblical sense, is not condemned because of who you LOVE. We are supposed to love everyone! The Biblical passages refer to who you HAVE SEX WITH. Big Difference. Just saying.

          • Alex Cherry says:

            So you’re saying it’s okay to FEEL that way, just not to do anything about it? Why don’t you try that on for size? It’s okay to be attracted to men, but expressing physical intimacy, which the APA tells is necessary for healthy psychological function, is forbidden!

            Do you not see the self-aggrandizing traps you lay? Not to mention how condescending it is?

        • Mikel says:

          You need to get out, you just described a generation, not a minority within that generation. BTW, it describes the previous generation as well… and the next…

          Stop being ‘holier than thou’, open your eyes and learn to live, rather than standing around condemning others.

        • Alex Cherry says:

          Wait, could it be because you broke us? Beyond the absurdity of your anecdotal evidence, I will acknowledge significantly higher rates of depression, mental illness, and substance abuse in the self-identified LGBTQ community. I will also squarely point the finger at the group of people who have institutionalized homophobia, bullied, ridiculed, threatened, abused, and rejected these people.

          Seriously, you tell us we’re evil and wrong, that what we are is unacceptable in the eyes of God, then you beat us, throw us out of our homes, subject us to torture (see “reparative therapy”), campaign to legally make us second-class citizens and remove what little protection we have in what few places we have, and you’re surprised that we’re a bit fucked in the head?

          The gall of you people astounds me endlessly.

        • Lana says:

          Heather,
          I’m sorry you were picked on. People can be so cruel.

          I have many gay friends as well, and they have chosen to give up on their faith because it is non-inclusive of them and they can not be open about their love. I also find it difficult to be at church with people who would immediately think that I am perverted if they knew who I loved.
          But I have chosen to not give up on God, and not to turn my back on Him.

          I was with a man, Heather, and it was not what God intended for me. I know that with every fiber of my being. Now I am in a committed relationship and ask God to help me love her well. Thank you for understanding that if I earnestly seek Him, He will let me know the answers, but I have been earnestly seeking Him my whole life, Heather.

          Actually, since I have been in a committed relationship with my love, I am on a journey towards reclaiming the Holy Spirits influence on my life, open to His guidance. It is a lonely journey, because if I were to discuss it with other Christians, I would be persuaded to either give up my love because of shaming tactics, or to give up my dignity because of lying to protect my emotions from their disapointed, fearful gaze at my life.

          Therefore, I am seeking God alone, and slowly finding people to discuss him with. because when I say “I love her”, they have yelled at me with It’s not God’s way. You will go to hell.

          This changes nothing but my ability to talk to them, and my depression deepens. Therefore I seek God in my own bedroom where I can talk to Him and study the Bible without the influence of people who will not listen to my heart. I have never felt condemned by God for this, only humans..

          I understand what you believe. But I am gay, and want nothing more than to spread the love of Christ, and I believe the best way to do that is through my actions – those that are in me from the Fruit of the Spirit/ from my desire to see the whole world come to know Him.

          One day we will stand face to face with Jesus, and I believe that He will let me know whether I was right or wrong. I pray everyday that I will be open to the Lord’s leading in my life, and that I will be willing to do what is His best for me. But I will NEVER ever EVER turn my back on the one I love. I have devoted my life to her.

          Marital commitment (we are not married yet, but our hearts are commited as though we are), is a lifetime thing. Ruth said to Naomi, “But Ruth replied, ‘Don’t urge me to leave you or to turn back from you. Where you go I will go, and where you stay I will stay. Your people will be my people and your God my God.” This is the promise I am making to the love of my life (here on earth), and I will not break that. Pray for gay people that their hearts will grow close to God. Pray for heterosexuals that their hearts will grow close to God. Pray that commitment will begin to be a serious issue to people and be taken seriously by people around the world – and that they will grow close to God, and have people who will support them in their faith.
          It would be nice to be able to discuss God without people bringing up my sexuality constantly.

          I guess there’s nothing to argue over. People should believe what they believe and always be open to other viewpoints (whether they adopt those views or not), but I think it’s important for us to have such a dialog.
          I asked why your heart broke for us. Thank you for answering. My heart breaks for gay people too when they turn their back on God because they don’t know that He wants to give them peace.

  2. preacherjean says:

    Hi – Great post! A friend of mine quibbled that you aren’t talking about everyone from your generation, but I think the points you make are valid. If you’re ever up Huron way, stop in at Grace Episcopal Church. I’d love to meet you!

    • Phyllis T. Albritton says:

      As a Christian, I was taught very, very early at Tabernacle Methodist Church, BInghamton NY: We are ALL made in God’s image; God loves us; and we are called to love EVERYONE as brothers and sisters. SOO GRATEFUL for that understanding of my faith from the time I was 5 years old–70 years ago.

  3. Mike says:

    I hate to be broken record, but this article, and these comments supported its thesis, are based on a common purpose: to convince fellow Christians that they should view homosexuality as something other than sinful. To that end, I would like to see some evidence that the early church, or any era of the church prior to the 20th century, espoused positive views of homosexuality.

    Can anyone provide this evidence?

    If not, I’m afraid the purpose will not be met. All I seem to be reading is how Christians who believe homosexuality is a sin – which I believe has been the position of Christians since Christ walked the earth. It is this position that must be addressed – the warrant behind it.

    So please, can someone simply show me where the Christians got it wrong? Where did Irenaeus, Clement, Athanasius, Chrysostom, Ambrose, Augustine, Origen, Gregory, and hundreds of billions of other Christians – to include Reformation leaders, like Luther, Calvin, Zwingli, and Knox – get it wrong?

    • Selvi says:

      Have you seen this video?

      The first step to accepting that the Bible is not anti-LGBT is to realize that Christianity was founded on the premise of love, acceptance, and redemption. Jesus embraced those who were cast out by society… so why would the religion surrounding his teachings cast out people who are a little bit different? The world must relentlessly look at the bible through that lens and find the love in the messages.
      Not to mention, many of the translations fail to encompass the entire meaning of the hebrew original text.

      If you’re further interested, there is this website that interprets the bible’s connection to the LGBT world in slightly more radical ways – http://www.wouldjesusdiscriminate.org/

      • Susan R says:

        Jesus love was for everyone but he did say ” if you love me you will obey my commandments”. What are the commandments? were they commandments or suggestions? Don’t base your understanding of things that have eternal consequences on sound bites and opinions – do your own homework!

        • Joe says:

          I think there are 10 commandments and none of them mention anything about being gay. If you want to start talking about what the bible forbids we can talk about slaves not rising up against their masters, or wearing clothing of mixed fibers and on and on. If you want to say that was in the old testament not the new, where were the commandments?

        • EML says:

          Jesus said absolutely nothing about homosexuality. Whether “obey my commandments” means the 10 commandments, or His teachings in the gospels, neither option even touches on homosexuality. While they do not touch on homosexuality, they overflow with messages of love and acceptance.

        • Marie Lusk says:

          Where in the Ten Commandments does it mention Homosexuality?

          • JK Anderson says:

            Commandment 7- Do Not Commit Adultery. We already know in the Bible, whether you believe it or not, that God says that sex or a relationship other than friendship between two men or even two women is wrong (Leviticus 20:13). So committing adultery refers to any sexual sin of the flesh. Also, any of the arguments about not eating anything unclean, wearing certain clothes, etc in the rules God gives from the OT are later taken away in the New Covenant. However, if you read the NT which explains the New Covenant (aka Jesus), you’ll see that God doesn’t repeal his stance on homosexuality: “Romans 1:26-27 – “Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural relations for unnatural ones. In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed indecent acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their perversion.”
            I don’t agree with the attitude that all homosexual people go to hell or should be condemned by Christians. Just like me, they’re sinners. We all have no chance of going to heaven unless we fully trust our lives to God and repent for our sins AND TRUST IN HIM TO CHANGE US. We cannot simply say “yeah I believe in God and so I’m going to heaven.” That doesn’t cut it. You have to strive for a life of completeness in God alone. We’re all going to stumble, be tempted, and fail a lot. But there’s a big difference between saying “oh well I believe in God so I can do whatever I want.” and attempting to redefine God’s laws, and messing up occasionally (because we’re human and sometimes stupid just like Adam and Eve) and turning to God to help us change. Not just send up a quick prayer, hope for the best, and keep doing what we want.

        • Brian says:

          per Jesus, the two great commandments: Love God, Love other people. Pretty Simple.

      • Drew says:

        If you are a Christian and believe being LGBT is a sin, please explain to me why your American citizenship entitles you to prevent another American citizen of their right to have their union recognized by our secular government. I don’t understand your rationale for this. It’s fine if you want to believe all gays and lesbians will go to a lake of fire to burn for all eternity, batshit crazy as that is, but how can you translate that into a legal argument based on the Constitution? All you can source is a book that was written 3,500 years ago, and if you’ve read the old testament, it is clearly designed to govern a society with two entire books that are basically nothing but legal texts. In fact, those bylaws, minutia, and strongly emphasized suggestions (sins) were entirely thrown out by Christianity as too cumbersome, restrictive, and unnecessary to salvation. It is hypocritical. Jews who keep Kosher diets and homes aren’t lobbying our Government to make the sale of lobster and bacon illegal. Mormons aren’t trying to ban caffeine. FSMians aren’t protesting imitation parm. Again, it’s not up to me what you believe, but don’t use that religious choice to deny free American citizens hearts what those heats want. The pursuit of happiness is exactly that.

    • idahogie says:

      Now you demand evidence? You believe a guy rose from the dead because it’s written in an old book. You believe that a god impregnated a woman because it’s written in an old book. You believe that a god wiped out the population of the earth in a huge flood because it’s written in an old book. And you believe in denying happiness to gay people because it’s written in a book.

      Where’s your fucking evidence?

      • RedKat says:

        If I could “Like” this post (idahogie) I sure as hell would! You summed up my feelings perfectly! <3 Think for yourself, get the whole story, ask questions, and don't just follow anything or anyone blindly!

        *Let me say though, that up until I was a (late) teenager, I was expected to go to church every Sunday with my family (I'm now 34) But by the time I was (about) 10, I had already started questioning parts of those "Christian" teachings. Ultimately I decided that any religion which can preach love, acceptance and forgiveness in one breath; then tell me that certain segments of the population are "eternally damned" in their second breath just wasn't for me! I still consider myself "a believer" but I'm not a follower of any "traditional" religion…

        • Stewart Simpson says:

          You believe electricity is cause by electrons. F=ma. All because some dead guy wrote that in a piece of paper two hundred years ago. Actually, F=dp/dt, but that would require a more in depth understanding of physics. Regardless, yes, I ask for “evidence” that the sexual spectrum is rigid. Please, prove me wrong.

          • idahogie says:

            1. I wasn’t talking to you.
            2. I know more about physics than you, probably.
            3. That’s an asinine argument you’ve got there. F=ma gets results — I don’t just believe it because it’s written in a book.
            4. I have no Earthly idea what “the sexual spectrum is rigid” means. Further, I never claimed it, so I don’t have to provide any evidence.

          • Stewart Simpson says:

            Regardless, I doubt it. And if you know anything about physics, that model clearly breaks down in several regimes. (Quantum mechanics.) All I am saying is, to ignore a position because it was written in an old book is just as ridiculous as any other scientific endeavor. The bible has been more scrutinized than any other book in the world.

          • Alex Cherry says:

            Scrutinized and found lacking, true. The fact that something is written in an old book is no reason to support a position. That’s the problem with the majority of religious arguments; the entire basis for them is that the Bible says something. That’s not a reason. Support your claims.

          • idahogie says:

            And it’s been found lacking more than just about any other book in the world. It’s an immoral pile of garbage, full of stupidity and nonsense. It is self-contradictory and ahistorical. And it’s just lousy writing.

            I don’t ignore things just because they are written down in old books. But I do ignore things that are ONLY written down in old books. Only a moron believes fantastic stories written in a single book from 1600 years ago — especially when that book claims to have been written by god. What are we — all 7-yr-olds?

          • Alex Cherry says:

            Because those things can be (and are regularly) demonstrated in experimentation and observation.

            Here is your evidence: http://www.apa.org/pi/lgbt/resources/just-the-facts.aspx?item=3

      • Susan R says:

        And what books do you base your findings on? The scholarly evidence for the authenticity of Christianity is abundant.

        • idahogie says:

          Rationality and science. They provide evidence. There is no evidence for your religion. None. And you want to deny people simple happiness based on your silly book.

          • chris says:

            You’re speaking reason idahogie…don’t expect logical argument in return. To Susan R and several others, as a great man once said, “that which can be affirmed without evidence can be dismissed without evidence”. There is abundant evidence that the bible is authentic. Yes, it’s an authentic book alright. But that does not make it the word of god. It’s the word of men. And I mean men…no women allowed. No gospels according to Mary Magdelane.

        • Alex Cherry says:

          Please cite ONE valid, peer-reviewed, scientific paper that confirms the so-called “authenticity” of Christianity. Also, please define “authenticity” in this context.

      • rachelle says:

        I love you.

      • I’m sorry…but if this discussion is about Christianity’s view of homosexuality, then aren’t we assuming that we believe what the Bible says to be true?

    • Mikel says:

      The term “homosexual” did not appear in the bible until the 20th century… why? because there was no concern for it. Egyptians, Romans, Catholics… pretty much all nations, in the earlier centuries (even when the bible was written), the idea of having a male-male relationship on the side of your relationship with your wife, and your wife having other relationships outside this thing called marriage (which was adopted long after marriage was invented by the state and other cultures to facilitate joining of families in most cultures). But, this is what people do not want to believe… that the church adopted these ideas… the idea of a dowry is adding value to a daughter’s life in order to make her more appealing to suitable males and to marry her “up the social stature” pre-dates the religious adoption of marriage.

      But, basically, it comes down to religion adopting and trying to adapt the world to their views. Marriage is not a religious institution, nor is is religiously defined. People have weddings in churches, but file their marriage through the state, where it belongs. Separation. There was nothing negative in the bible about homosexuality until the church decided it was something they didn’t like. When it says “man shall not lie with man”… it used man as a generic term, as was customary back then, and is customary today… such as when you walk into a room with 45 women and 5 man and say “hey guys”… do you change the women into men because you have addressed them as such? No…

      But, you will dismiss this regardless, so this is posted for those that really want an answer to your question.

      • Andre says:

        I think there were at least 3 Roman Emperors that had to adopt heirs to the throne of Rome because they were too busy with their same gendered partner to have kids of their own. Gay marriage has at least been understood since then.

        • Mikel says:

          To say the least… and everyone knows about how same gender relationships have disrupted the catholic church… and although they will claim them to be ‘isolated incidents’… percentage wise… there’s more gay clergy compared to non gay clergy than there are homosexuals vs heterosexuals in the world.

          But, THEIR minority should be forgiven by god and we should ignore the facts.

          This minority should be shunned and cursed and cast into the fires of hell.

          Sad the differences, huh?

    • nic says:

      just google it man! It was very prevalent especially BC…

    • Michelle says:

      That would be like asking for a quote from the bible that promotes equality between men and women. Women have constantly been looked down upon by the church, but that doesn’t mean that the attitude is correct. It is an attitude shaped by people and the social circumstances of the time, it is not the attitude that God teaches us to follow. If you should read the bible carefully it states that you must judge no one, for God is the one that judges. How then could you say that being homosexual is being sinful, without judging a whole group of people based on their sexual orientation. In addition to that Jesus also states that we must love one another as he has loved us. If you truly abided by that would you view those who are homosexual in such a negative light?

      • Stewart Simpson says:

        I am so sick of the homosexual supporters telling us Christians what we believe or what the Bible says. You are all just as guilty of interpreting the bible. The beauty of the church, they do it behind closed doors, devoid of politics, with a master’s degree in theology, and some the brightest minds of our generation. I’m sorry, but your minor studies of the bible are not of equal weight compared to those with much more experience. Would you tell a doctor how to do the surgery?

        • Mikel says:

          So, you’re saying a master’s in Theology overrides the public opinion of a Master’s in Psychology in understanding human nature? And it overrides a Master’s or a PhD in history? And they know more about the bible than someone who has studied Ancient Languages and can read the actual text? Or, are they more capable of reiterating and arguing the same things their predecessors have taught them to understand? Free-thinking is not allowed THAT much in the church… or didn’t you know that?

        • Susan says:

          “I am so sick of the homosexual supporters telling us Christians what we believe or what the Bible says”…you know, the pastor does that every week. I’m one of “us Christians,” and I support homosexuals. Why? Because I’m one of three kids, and the other two are gay. For years I felt that their being gay was for God to judge, but guess what? I was judging them too. Then I read a lot of different things by people who are smarter than I am, have had lots of theological training, and were able to show me how the Bible could be interpreted differently from what I’d been told.

          I don’t know about yours, but my church is most definitely not devoid of politics. If the church were, gay marriage would’ve been legalized a long time ago.

          And your last question is incredibly arrogant. Ugh.

          • Stewart Simpson says:

            I’m sorry the cross is too heavy for you to bear.

          • Emily says:

            Oh. My. God. “I’m sorry the cross is too heavy for you to bear.” Is this for real?
            First of all, I would like to say that I love Susan’s post. Second, I don’t know much about your masters degrees, but I can say that I attend a Christian university (church of christ, if that matters to you), where our biblical studies department has some of the nation’s best and most brilliant professors (all with PhDs, mostly from ivy leagues). Out of interactions with several of them (probably around 5 or 6), I would confidently say that NONE of them would find value in any of your comments (this is to you, Stewart Simpson). They are some of those most supportive of equality that I have ever met. And FYI, those “brightest minds of our generation” you mentioned? I attend church with them. As in those accepted to multiple ivy leagues, with multiple masters and PhDs from ivy leagues, etc.
            They are the reason that I still find hope and truth in Christianity: because they help me see the beauty in the text, and especially in all of its mistakes.

        • Casey says:

          this is so cute and naieve! :)

        • Marie Lusk says:

          No , but I would never presume to judge others either! And if you believe that God is all knowing and all powerful, that God could not make a mistake-tell me then–who created homosexuals? God???

          • jt says:

            God gave people the ability to chose. If you lay down with someone of the same sex, you chose homosexuality. Sure, you can be attracted to whomever you are attracted to, but you chose to act on it.

            Does a drug addict not lust for another hit, does a molestor not chose to prey on children, does a Priest not chose to remain celibate. Life is full of choices.

            The Bible is a guideline to live by, you dont half-way chose to live by it. You dont pick and choose what you like to live by in the rules of life, be it laws our government sets, or laws of the Bible, to do that bastardizes the very act of living by a set standard.

            If you want to go form a new religion that accepts homosexuality, do so, but do not ask a Religion that has been around for ages, to conform to your newfound Ideologies.

            As far as celebrity’s and musicians and people who have gained the public eye, to use this fame to push agenda’s is wrong. I watch actors to see them portray the story as a writer wrote it, I listen to bands and singers to hear them sing songs that entertain. If these actors want to go to clubs and do a sitdown discussion among people who would pay to hear their thoughts thats fine.

            If musicians want to sing political songs, thats fine, I can chose not to go to their show. But! stay off the news, when a reporter asks you a question, dont dodge it to make the tv or radio time about said musician or actors stance on topics like politics or religion, your just an actor or a musician and your opinions are no more important than mine or the next guys and we dont get a voice on national TV and radio. So, smile, tell us when the next movie or album comes out, thank the people putting cash in your pockets and move on. Stop using your fame to mold the minds of sheep, people who cant form their own opinions, people who are easily swayed to whatever political party is cool, people who will change their religious beliefs like a pair of shoes, just to be with the in-crowd.

            Dont ask your religion to change for you when it is actually you changing your religion. Too many people in this day and age believe they are so special, the world should change to suit them and not the masses. The majority rules, if your a Methodist and 99% of your church is against homosexuality, dont ask them to change their views to accomodate yours, your the odd man out. If you live in Idaho or any other red state, accept the fact your going to be outnumbered, stay amongst friends, accept it for what it is and move on OR, move to an area in this Country that supports your postions in life.

            Off my soapbox, rants done.
            FLAME ON!!

          • Mikel says:

            There’s too much wrong with this to flame it… it was burning while you wrote it.

        • Kris Capel says:

          Wow. I have a master’s in Divinity and I am offended by your remarks. I see just as much validity in the interpretation of scripture by someone picking it up for the first time as I do my own interpretation. If I didn’t – well – I would not believe in the power of the Holy Spirit.

          • Spotty says:

            Amen. I know many people with degrees in theology and ordained as ministers that would likely also find these remarks offensive and contrary to the beliefs of their own churches. Each person, not solely priests or those specially educated in theology, having access to God through Christ was a key tenet of the Protestant reformation. The whole point was basically we don’t need an MDiv or church authority to interpret the scripture for us. That ability to connect with God and understand is within everyone, whether s/he is educated or not.

        • Spotty says:

          If I remember correctly, Jesus was a carpenter and his followers didn’t hold Masters degrees.

        • Thinkonit says:

          Then keep it behind closed doors and devoid of politics…stop legislating how others should live. The church is not very beautiful in this regard.

      • Stewart Simpson says:

        The church promotes a healthy family unit. Every family has a dominant family member. Someone has to wear the pants. As to judging a group, we judged the nazi’s for their collective action, even though not all supported the position of the nazi party. I judge people not based upon their emotions, but by their discipline and actions. If you are gay, and act on it, I can judge you for being gay. If you don’t act on it, I can’t judge you. The act defines judgement.

        • Michael Gilsinger says:

          I don’t think anyone said you were incapable of judging, rather christ demonstrated that you shouldn’t judge. That’s GODs job. I’m sure you feel 100% correct in your judgement of homosexual actions.
          But, Christ didn’t say “judge not, unless your really really sure…”

        • Susan says:

          Well, the Bible has some things to say about judging people too, doesn’t it? And if the church promotes a healthy family unit, why is divorce among Christians nearly as common as any other group?

          • Stewart Simpson says:

            Maybe with American’s because of the “no-fault” divorce. I encourage my friends to get marriage contracts, with legal teeth to discourage divorce. Also, there is a movement back to “at fault” marriage licenses. The divorce movement can be directly linked to the social upheaval with the women’s rights movement, and women learning/redefining their role in society. Its been roughly fifty years, and we are still attempting to define that role yet.

          • Mikel says:

            You obviously do not know what no-fault divorce means… it does not invalidate marriage, but it does allow individuals to keep from paying thousands of dollars to get divorced if it is mutual.

          • Stewart Simpson says:

            Oh, no I do. They failed to commit to their relationship because the refused to resolve their differences. Again, instant gratification versus hard work and love.

          • Mikel says:

            And yet, they are far better Christians than you could hope to be… they are the best people I have ever met in my life… So much so that they condemned me for my difference in belief and our mutual respect for one another went out the window for their beliefs over mine.

            We were inseparable best-friends till they decided religion was more important than their happiness… I’ll be glad to let them that condemned me are to be condemned themselves.

            BTW, enjoy hell when you get there as well, I’m sure we’ll all by comfy cozy when we get there… Oh wait… never mind, you wouldn’t believe me.

          • Mikel says:

            sorry, posted that in the wrong place, disregard.

            And no, you do not know what no-fault divorce means, you just proved it.

          • Lena says:

            This might blow some of their minds, but… the Bible actually condones divorce! Whoa!

          • mickeysix says:

            Stewart Simpson: ” They failed to commit to their relationship because the refused to resolve their differences.”

            sometimes those “differences” include such non-trivial circumstances like spousal abuse. if you’re going to argue that a woman should just try to “work it out” with a husband who beats on her, you’d better have a damn strong justification for your position.

        • Alex Cherry says:

          Why does one family member have to “wear the pants”?

      • Susan R says:

        What does love truly mean?

        • Stewart Simpson says:

          Defining love is the problem. Love is impossible to define, similar to the position and momentum of an electron. We can only localize the position to a certain degree. Currently, society defines love by how you feel, although the church teaches love should be “localized” by the commitment and sacrifice for another human being. The church allows men and women to love each other, they just go a step further and define appropriate love.

        • Selvi says:

          Love is certainly a vast idea. You may have love for many different things. Love for your own life, compassion for the strangers that you wish to help, love for your family and all that they see you through, love for your friends who encourage you to your very best. Love is the most unselfish thing that a person can give, but as a word it is thrown around too much and trampled and defiled. Many people believe that love is simply a way to make themselves happy.
          For a research project in a philosophy class a few years ago, I interviewed many different people on what the thought love was, and I was stunned when I got the most thoughtful and powerful answer from my dad. He said that love means wishing more for someone than you wish for even yourself, and when their successes and happiness fuel your own. That is why I think love is not just a feeling, it should be a commitment and a willingness to share a part of yourself.

          • Stewart Simpson says:

            I agree, love is a concept this society does not understand. We consistently misuse love as well as its antithesis, hate.

    • Riha Elizabeth T. says:

      If the only issue you really get out of this, even though she’s not talking about that at all and hasn’t even remotely mentioned it, is that she’s trying to convince Christians not to see homosexuality is a sin, you’re one of two things: defensive or shortsighted.

      Lemmi just ask you one thing. With whom did Jesus take residence? In the churches? With the pharisees? No. He took up residence with sinners, was loving, accepting, compassionate for “He knew the ways of man” to pull that somewhere out of the New Testament. It’s been a while since I’ve cracked a Bible (and for good reason).

      I’m going to keep this short because I don’t feel like wasting a lot of my own time. It’s not about what you believe that has any bearing on what other people do with their lives. Let’s say 90% of America was Islamic (to only use as an example. I’m not making a statement on Islam) and suddenly all of the Islamic people decided that Christians were doing it wrong. So they decided to get together and kill or convert everyone to Islam. They are trying to take your rights away. Your rights to your own religion and to your own way of life. What in God’s name makes you think you have any authority or right to take the rights of others?

      Recap: Regardless of your opinion, you cannot suppress or control the lives and equal rights of others as if the shoe were on the other foot, you would be just as if not more so disgruntled and angry.

    • Tim says:

      Mike, Same sex couples were and is as it should be a non-issue. Lessons from the old testament deal with temple prostitution and alter attendant cleanliness mixed with other fertility pagan practices, attempted gang rape of angels. The most notable vatican (Church at Rome) historians all agree that the oldest known neptuals in their archives are between same sex and they predate the church’s sanctioning of mariage by hundreds of years. LThe church by this measure has only been in the Marriage business give or take five-six hundred years. As most christian writings adhere to humanstories of messing up God’s perfect creation one could assume a noteable spit drama never occured to make the headlines. I ‘ve never seen a hetrosexualrape or prostitution story form a model or prohibition for hetrosexual relationships. Bigotry (exersized via double standard) is the only reason they are proposed as baring loving consenual same sex relationships. Consentual loving sex is largely not something recorded for humans screwing up God’s perfect creation,it is the one thing we get right. It is as it should be between two and God’s creative hand and the rest of us should leave it be. The social norms of the day had to do with social tribal population desires that are no longer sustainable on earth. Lots of couples limit procreation for voluntary and involuntary reasons prcreation alone is no qualifier.

    • Peter Brown says:

      Mike, I’m not a Biblical literalist, but I’ll pretend I’m speaking to one. The Bible isn’t the story of a never-changing God, but as an evolving One. God makes humanity and then later repents (Gen 6) and once He brings the flood upon the world, he promises never to do so again. Fast forward to Jesus, and we see God not as angry warlord who smites His enemies and “hates” certain types of people; but as the father of the Prodigal Son, open-armed even to sinners…or in the Parable of the laborers in the vineyard: more loving than humans could possibly understand. Jesus’ heroes of His parables were often non-Jews: radical! Jesus didn’t stay prim and pious and perfectly law abiding…he got out there and drank with sinners, embraced lepers, and cared about everyone from adultresses to Samaritan women to Roman centurions. But after His crucifixion, God kept loving in a wider way.

      In the Early Church, Peter is adamant that Jesus’ message of a loving God is designed for Jews only…not Gentiles. In Acts 10, God gives Peter the vision of unclean animals and orders him to eat…to break laws of Leviticus 11. When Peter says “Surely not, Lord!” God admonishes him saying “Don’t declare anything that God has made pure to be unclean.” and God widens his embrace to include the Gentiles.

      God hasn’t spoken to us through new scripture for 19 centuries, but the Holy Spirit has been left behind to inform us…along with our intellect and our desire to listen to God. If you look for God in the book of Leviticus…you’re going to feel like either the world is going to hell (because we skip over so many of these laws… http://www.ariel.com.au/jokes/Dr_Laura_and_Leviticus.html for a bit of fun on that) or that many of these laws aren’t important to God in a post-Jesus world. Taken from the OT to the NT and beyond, God seems to be continually widening His embrace.

      We now know for example, that homosexuality is not a behavior, it’s a genetic variety the same as hair or skin color. There are gay goats, gay frogs, gay insects…it’s part of the fabric of being alive on this planet. And God seems to have created us that way. (If not, who created gay people?) Knowing what we now know about gayness and about the love of God and His ever widening embrace, we’re at the starting edge of seeing homosexuality as no longer a sin. We don’t take that step as Christians lightly! But prayerfully, informed by the Spirit, and with the kind of radical love and compassion that Jesus showed.

      The alternative position would be to try to “correct” gays. Like saying to African Americans “lose your dark skin and God will love you.” Or to exclude gays from a full relationship with the church and with each other…to let them know their “defect” is an abomination to God. I’m with the Acts 10, evolving God on this, and I think to be truly loving we must also be. But what do I know? :)

      • Mikel says:

        Sadly, I have no idea if you are agreeing with me or refuting me…

      • Stewart Simpson says:

        At least reason abound in your position. I ask a simple question though, as human beings, (and Aristotle agrees,) should reason dictate our actions? in regards to monogamous relationships, Aristotle stated that man’s natural position is not that of monogamy, by polygamy. However, he stated reason should guide mankind to monogamy as it is our duty to triumph over our instinctual behaviors. Furthermore, do you think that sexual orientation could be influence by values or environment at all, or do you purely limit it to a genetic defect? (Evolution would imply that the gene-type would be eliminated.) If so, do you think the spectrum is even slightly fluid?

        • Alex Cherry says:

          I support polygamy, frankly. I see no reason why a group of consenting adults can’t enter into an intimate relationship and get legal protections.

          I don’t know what causes sexual orientation, and science doesn’t have a much strong evidence yet, either. We’re pretty sure it’s not changeable, though.

          • Wayne says:

            Wow! Thank you for that admission. May I quote you?

          • Alex Cherry says:

            The admission that I support polygamy? Certainly. I’m quite public about it.

            The admission that we’re not quite sure what causes sexuality? So long as you include the caveat that what small amount of research that DOES exist supports the conclusion that sexual orientation is biological and not psychological, and thus cannot be changed.

          • Mikel says:

            I try to equate homosexuality to personal attractions.

            I love brunettes. I cannot explain why I love brunettes, but I can look at blonde bombshells and think… eh, she’s ok.

            Is it because of someone I knew when I was growing up? I have no idea… can’t pinpoint anyone. Is it because my mother is brunette? nope, she’s dirty blonde. Is it because I’m brunette? who knows.

            But I see long, flowing brown hair and I want to run my fingers through it and comb it and make it pretty.

            Some people like the same sex… and some of them explain it very similarly. I can’t explain my fetish, nor can they quite often. Can you deny your fetishes? absolutely.

            I believe this explains why guys in straight marriages, pastors, politicians, etc… either get caught with or always look at and admire same-sex individuals. It’s what they are attracted to… but society and the church says they have to be straight… so they try.

            Sometimes they fail because they are being told that they can’t be who they are. And that’s a very difficult thing to do.

          • Alex Cherry says:

            I would say that it’s a very accurate view.

      • Marie Lusk says:

        I like this comment!

    • Lena says:

      Jesus never once spoke against love between two people of the same sex. Not one single time. He was always talking about love and acceptance. He hung around all kinds of people the modern “institution” we call “church” would condemn. Jesus was bigger than that.
      I can no longer call myself a Christian because I don’t agree with what the institution of Christianity has done to the Bible. I am proud to say, however, that I am a follower of Christ. I follow his teachings, not the church’s.

      • Wayne says:

        Well, He did say this:

        “Do not think that I came to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I did not come to abolish but to fulfill. For truly I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or stroke shall pass from the Law until all is accomplished. Whoever then annuls one of the least of these commandments, and teaches others to do the same, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever keeps and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.”

        And then there’s this:

        ““Have you not read that He who created them from the beginning made them male and female, For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’?”

        You don’t have to like it, or believe it, but Jesus said it.

        • idahogie says:

          Wayne: “You don’t have to like it, or believe it, but Jesus said it.”

          No. Some people wrote a story in which they claim that something like that was said by some guy they called Jesus who lived about a century before.

          You don’t know what Jesus said or didn’t say. And you certainly don’t have any idea if what he said matters.

          • B.Graves says:

            Read “Cold-CaseChristianity” or “The Case For Christ” written by men like you, at least interns of their beliefs initially before examining Scripture fully. Very interesting.

          • idahogie says:

            For every book you can point out that was supposedly written by a former atheist but newly converted Christian, I can point to 10 written by former Christians who are now atheists. So what?

            The bible is still a silly book of superstition with fabulous tales stolen from prior cultures. It’s nonsense, and nobody who didn’t want to believe it would have any reason to believe it.

          • Wayne says:

            I think if you read the thread I was responding to, it was about what Jesus said in the Bible. Your comments on the reliability of what he said are mere opinion, which is fine, but knee-jerk atheism isn’t becoming of a thinking person..

          • Mikel says:

            Funny, I thought atheism was brought about by people asking questions like… why? Is this possible? Where did this come from? What proof is there? Why is there so much coordination between current religions and many dead religions? Why is the Bible so unique and why doesn’t history depict what the bible says?

            That’s thinking man questions… the “I was told by ____, so I believe it” sounds more knee-jerk than un-thinking.

          • Wayne says:

            That’s very interesting. Those are the questions I was asking that led me to become a Christian. Nothing fits real life like the truth.

          • Mikel says:

            Absolutely… but, luckily for so many, blind faith works for them instead of the truth.

    • Tom says:

      HUNDREDS OF BILLIONS? You do not get to weigh in on global moral issues if you think HUNDREDS OF BILLIONS of people have lived on this planet! HUNDREDS OF BILLIONS. Wow. Wow wow wow.

      • Andrew says:

        Considering approximately 107 billion people (2011 study) have lived on Earth at one time in history, hundreds of billion is technically accurate.

        • Danielle says:

          The original quote referenced “hundreds of billions of other Christians.” Christ – and therefore, Christianity – did not exist until little more than 2,000 of the years being considered in the total history that includes all 107 billion people. An estimated 7% of the Earth’s population at any given time over those 2000 years have been “Christian.” Therefore, even the most extreme Christian scholars estimate the total number of Christians to have ever lived on Earth to be – at most (including population growth, etc.) – 7.7 billion. One might be able to pull off “a few billion other Christians” or maybe even “several billion Christians.” But technically, nowhere near “hundreds of billions of Christians.”

    • Kyle says:

      Why does there have to be proof of the early church embracing homosexuality? Christians have embraced shellfish. Contraception. It’s just sad.

      • Andre says:

        They’ve also embraced Polyester and microfiber. :-( pretty sure Jesus died a second time when he heard that one. :-( I knew a guy once who found moldy cheese in his refrigerator and he didn’t even wait outside the walls of the city for a full day for the priest from the tribe of Levi to come in and verify that the mold was gone nor did he do any ceremonial cleansing after he threw it in the trash. I mean he touched moldy cheese. Surely God will lead us out of the United States with Fish Hooks in our mouths. :-( sad days..

    • Dave says:

      Well, to begin the conversation in response to your comment. Most of the early church fathers had no idea how to translate certain words like “aresenakoitos” from 1 Cor 6:9 and 1 Tim 1:10.
      Then again, even when they did translate it, it was often times something like “slave-traders of homosexuals” (See Ignatius’ Epistulae interpolatae et epistulae suppositiciae 4.7.2.2; Polycarp’s Epistula ad Philippenses 5.3.5; or Origen’s Dialogus cum Heraclide 10.3 & 6 to name a few).
      With that said, you simply won’t find the kind of information that you are asking for in Church history, because so many aspects of the conversation that make it relevant for today are new to the theological purview of history.
      Just like Open Theism is a new articulation of divine providence that is rooted in Scripture. So too is a positive view of LGBT relationships a new concept rooted in the Bible’s redemptive trajectory with relation to sexuality in general.
      Lastly, to answer your question about someone that got it wrong in the early church, one could point to pastor Chrysostom. It wasn’t until his commentary of Rom 1:26 that anyone thought this verse referred to lesbianism. Even Augustine thought it was simply heterosexual sex that didn’t lead to procreation (e.g. oral or anal sex). While I appreciate some of what Chrysostom said, he was way off with that one.
      Hope that helps.

      • Nicolas says:

        “Most of the early church fathers had no idea how to translate certain words like “aresenakoitos” from 1 Cor 6:9 and 1 Tim 1:10.” –
        *
        Who told you they didn’t have an idea?

    • Steven says:

      I completely agree with you.

      The anger with the Church, on any issue is usually based on churches who are misguided anyways. I’ve never read in the good book that God Almightly has any hate towards homosexuals. Let alone condems them to Hell. But it does clearly say he frowns upon such sinful actions. Just like murder. I do remember reading God loves everyone though, and equally. He even loves Lucifer. He is just a disapointed father. He doesn’t hate.

      I see this post as the interpretation of someone who has had a bad church experience. Men were not meant to rule over other men. We can thus not let our spiritual beliefs be based on what a pastor teaches. I believe misguided teachers and their churches are Lucifers biggest weapon against followers of Chirst: Setting a false image and incorrectly teaching his word. We are a lazy society with lazy Chirstians. We need to read our Bibles, and not just on Sunday’s. We need to have a relationship with our Father. We need to open our eyes and see the truth.

    • marialynna says:

      I think looking for evidence is the wrong question. What we really need to think about is how we understand God as revealed through the person of Jesus Christ. Jesus was always surprising the people of his time with who he would eat with, sit with, touch and heal. He was always hanging out with the outcasts and the sinners. Might it be possible that God’s love is bigger, wider, more open and much more mysterious than the love we are even able to understand? Might it also be possible, then, that all those whom you named (Ireaneaus, Clement, Athanasius, reformation leaders, etc.) also were not completely understanding the depth and width of God’s love based on their own human understanding?

    • Andre says:

      Clement was a heretic. He preached Gnosticism.
      Jesus loved John and everything turned out okay for them. I mean besides Jesus getting crucified, but other than that. Peace and love man.

    • Danielle says:

      @Mike
      RE: “can someone simply show me where the Christians got it wrong?”
      Yes. A short list, just off the top of my head, but I’m sure others can easily add to it:
      1) support of slavery & segregation/apartheid
      2) the Earth is not flat & the Sun does not orbit the Earth
      3) those little things called “Inquisition,” “Crusades,” and “Witch Hunts”…you know, the murder-conversion-method, that breaks a commandment, FYI
      4) many forms of “traditional biblical marriage” (which include, but are not limited to: polygamy, rape, murder of non-virgin brides)
      5) hypocritical to #4, staunch opposition to interracial marriage
      6) the Holocaust, let’s not to easily forget which side the Church was on for that…or that Hitler was raised Catholic…or that the former Pope was a Nazi.
      7) women – in fact – are humans, not livestock, not the product of a man’s rib.

      The Church HAS been wrong before on countless issues…just like they are now wrong on this issue.

      You know what? Instead of telling others to prove you wrong, why don’t you show us a single point in history that the Christians, particularly the early Christians, or the Catholic Church (to whom this letter is obviously written), have ever actually gotten it RIGHT? Because you can’t.

      • jt says:

        Big bang… where did the mass that explodes come from, where did the energy to blow it up come from? Its far easier to explain Christianity and that you have to have faith and believe, than it is to explain scientifically big-bang theory.

        That was just an example of random facts that back religious peoples stance that Homosexuality is wrong, afterall you just gave a bunch of random nuggets to back your claims christianity is wrong for what it believes in.

        10 Commandments, 10 reasons the Church is right. Do you believe it is good to do the things the Commandments state are wrong? I think not. So, theres more proof the Church is right.

        Its easy to selectively come up with stuff to back any arguement.

        • Mikel says:

          Scientists develop theories… and sometimes those theories are changed or corrected as time goes on and things are understood more thoroughly.

          How would you feel if Scientists said the big bang was right and if you didn’t agree, they would burn you at the stake?

          Glass houses and stones come to mind.

        • Alex Cherry says:

          No offense, but that’s because you don’t understand the science of it. Additionally, science is perfectly willing to admit when it’s wrong; theories are disproven all the time, and newer, more accurate theories take their place.

          And “easier” doesn’t mean “better” or “smarter” or “healthier” or “wiser”. It would be EASIER for me to pick up my rifle and simply kill the people who are slaughtering the children of my people with their hatred, but I don’t because it would be WRONG, and not WISER.

      • Dave says:

        Well, I wouldn’t go so far as to say they have never gotten anything right (unless you are using sarcasm). The Church universal and the RCC in particular has done wonderful things for our planet throughout its history. All of what you said is true, but that isn’t true Christianity, that is Jesus, that isn’t God’s will for God’s world. Jesus came to serve and wherever self-sacrificial service is taking place, we see the will of God being embodied.

    • Devon Holstad says:

      When looking at religious leaders, how about we go straight to the top of the chain – God himself. When did God say homosexuality was a sin? When did Jesus? Here’s the answer: NEVER. Just because some human religious leaders said it was so, based on old pre-Christian Jewish law, doesn’t make it so. Religion was also used as a justification for slavery and discrimination against African Americans. You wouldn’t think that such discrimination is ok just because previous religious leaders thought it was ok, would you?

      • jt says:

        Want proof your dealing with a far left progressive… Wait for the mention of slavery, racisim, attacks on Christianity, etc etc.

        Next you will be calling all christians bible thumping whackos, gun toting, inbred rednecks, Paranoid preppers etc etc. Its the same regurgitated crap every time.

        You say God has never condemned Homosexuality, well, here ya go:

        Leviticus 18:22 – You shall not lie with a male as one lies with a female; it is an abomination.
        Leviticus 20:13 – If there is a man who lies with a male as those who lie with a woman, both of them have committed a detestable act; they shall surely be put to death. Their bloodguiltiness is upon them
        Romans 1:26-27 – For this reason God gave them over to degrading passions; for their women exchanged the natural function for that which is unnatural, and in the same way also the men abandoned the natural function of the woman and burned in their desire toward one another, men with men committing indecent acts and receiving in their own persons the due penalty of their error.
        ETC ETC ETC.

        The Bible is the word of God

        • Dave says:

          You’re right, the Bible is the Word of God, but quoting a few verses out of their context doesn’t make much of a case for your position. I won’t repeat the arguments here, but simply know that you should attempt a little exegesis before listing a few verses.
          Do you really think that we haven’t read these verses, prayed through them and come to see that they can in fact be viewed differently than conservatives have interpreted them?
          As someone that knows Hebrew and Greek, trust me, I have spent more than a few hours with these texts. Yet, at the end of the day, through my Christo-centric hermeneutical lens, I believe that God blesses same-sex relationships.
          Imagine that, an educated individual that believes in the inspiration of the Bible who disagrees with you. It really is possible.

    • Cliff says:

      Mike-I think the point of the post is not to say “x” denomination approved of homosexuality, etc but rather that many in the church today are more open to the idea…and to present the poster’s questions with their experience and what they may have been told growing up in the church.
      Also, asking where in the church’s past the leaders approved of homosexuality is a moot point. The poster gave examples of the church’s past that illuminate the err of thought. Galileo’s trial and punishment for stating the earth was not the center of the universe (“and yet it moves”), slaughter and conquest used under the banner of God (crusades), the more recent history of slavery and the less than equal value of a black man’s soul, a ministry of condemnation while muttering “love the sinner” almost reluctantly, the persecution of logic/science due to fear, and potentially the freshest of wounds-the covering up of atrocities against children by priests et all.
      My heart and soul knows that God is not a God who fears question. As Jesus said, “seek and you will know”. We are all on this journey and none are more sure of God’s true word than the other. As it was said, “to thine own self be true”, because a life held on lies is a life built on the sandy shore.

      • jt says:

        She is calling out her Church for its failure to accept Homosexuals and change its stance on Gays in general. She then goes on with a pious holier than thou diatribe, taking shots at her Religion she loves so much for not being as reasonable as her, in acceptance of Gays. She then backs up her position by mentioning Twitter and Lamestream media and SNL!!!!! SNL!!! yes SNL!!! now there is the center of the Universe for Morality! hell with Church, worship in the warm bathing glow of SNL and their comedic stylings!!!

        This is nothing but a well written feel good, hug a gay and feel good bunch of lipservice paid to us by an ill-informed, angsty, teen who hasnt come close to figguring out life and most likely wrote this believing it to be her big leap into the world, putting it out there for everyone to see, that she means what she says and says what she means and she is going to make a difference darn it, because she went to a concert and she drank the kool-aid some musician was serving.

        Well, she can befriend all of the lgbt community she wants and she probably feels like she is better than most people in her town and her shit dont stink, and all that, but, she is just proving how caught up in the progressive mindfuk she really is. Wont be too long before shes got a baby and the government will come take it from her because of no fault of her own, they will take it because she and millions like her ran out and voted because MTV and Tina Fey told her to and she being a true sheep voted in a political party that would set forth an agenda of taking care of us so well, that it no longer believes any woman is capable of raising a child. They will take it from her to feed and raise it and eventually educate it into their doctrine. Dont believe me, watch what this MSNBC host believes:

        http://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=msnbc+collective&mid=7F4865E6B466C68BF7D37F4865E6B466C68BF7D3&view=detail&FORM=ASMMVR

        This is what you get when you vote to be cool and dont educate yourself with fact from all sides of a story. You get people who think they know what is best for you and your children and they WILL prove it to you. Go to Houston, TX and ask to see your childs tests ask to sit in on a class and see what is being teached, you cant. They dont want you to know what they teach, because they are in the business of creating sheep.

        The girl that wrote this, will look back in 20 years and say WOW! wtf was I thinking.

        And the cycle continues.

    • OneLove says:

      There are plenty of well respected theologians that don’t believe homosexuality is a sin. A nationally respected professor at my school wrote a book about the Christian case for gay marriage. A professor from Western Theological Seminary, ( RCA, a.k.a Calvinist), came out with a similar book. There are many other similar books, and there is plenty of biblical support in these books. But if a book is too long or hard for you you can always try google… or actually read the bible instead of regurgitating the crap that, I’m assuming, you were spoonfed as a child.

      And please don’t use a list of historic theologians to support your position. What were some of those same theologians’ views on race, or gender, or social class? There are so many unjust things that Christians have supported throughout history. Unfortunately, the injustice Christians have caused homosexuals has gone on this long.

      I am a Christian, and I believe that God has called us to love, and hold everyone as equal, Everyone, regardless of race, ethnicity, gender, socioeconomic class, or any other social conditions. His love is unconditional.

      • jt says:

        You know what all those men have in common that would cause them to take a stance that gay is ok? They are probably gay or bi or they have family that is gay. They are biased. Time and time again, people are against homosexuality, until it enters their world, like their son comes out, or their sisters shows up to thanksgiving dinner with her special friend Christine. Then all the sudden they become the biggest supporter of gays ever.

        • djc says:

          That’s good, right? They were against homosexuality because they were ignorant or fearful of it. Then their minds were changed by learning about it from someone they love or trust. Odd that you make that sound terrible, but it’s how many people overcome prejudice. It could happen for you as we’ll someday.

    • Bridget says:

      Whether or not it’s sin doesn’t give us the authority to judge someone or somehow limit them from the knowledge of God’s grace. Divorce is a sin yet the church over looks those who have been divorced. Why? Because it’s socially acceptable. And divorced people are able to find healing and transformation because they are not restricted from learning of and experiencing God’ s love via the church.

    • Eli says:

      Check out John Boswell’s “Same-Sex Unions in Premodern Europe” – which shows evidence of divine unions blessed by the church. Much of the church got this wrong in the same places that they got a lot of stuff wrong – like the Crusades, slavery, and even colonialism. There are also examples of same-sex love mentioned in the Bible, according to some biblical scholars. Some believe Jesus even helped a man who had a young lover (if you truly care enough about this subject, google it yourself). Want more info? Watch this: http://movies.netflix.com/WiMovie/For_the_Bible_Tells_Me_So/70059383?locale=en-US and do some research. Heck, pray about it with an open heart. I don’t know about you, but I believe God is big enough to show me the truth – and this is what God showed me… God is love and God loves; we are to be a reflection of that love in the world.

    • Caleb Bright says:

      Sorry, I just needed to drop by and let you know that your numbers need work. Estimates for the human population of earth over its entire history all land in the range of 80-100 billion. So let take the high end of that estimate 100 Billion. That is every single person to have lived on the earth from human emergence until now. So your comment about “hundreds of billions of . . .Christians” is simply impossible. Sorry to be pedantic but just thought I’d point that out. I’d hate to see the stereotype of Christians as ignorant bigots, (that the article above alludes to) perpetuated.needlessly. Have a good one.

    • Seth Morrigan says:

      They didn’t. It’s the current generation of church leaders who are getting it wrong by trying to turn that viewpoint into SECULAR LAW.

    • Suzanne says:

      The first-century Church (and later Church fathers) had little scientific or psycho-social understanding of sexual orientation in humans, but I think the main stress was on fidelity. In that light, seems gay marriage would be applauded rather than challenged…..and/or that heterosexual adultery would be protested at least equally. Many branches of Christianity (in American Protestantism) have understood that a rigid application of our Holy Scriptures is problematic–re: issues of slavery, role of women, etc.

    • Mark says:

      Who cares about the views of these ancient philosophers (and charlatans, in some cases) you list? During the time you cite, slavery was accepted. Your bible and faith support slavery, rape, and murder (in some cases).

      You’re doing what millions have done over time, to stop progress: let’s look back at history, and follow what was set down hundreds, or thousands of years ago.

      It’s wrong.

      Times change. Computers. Science. Television. Internet. Phones. Clothes with zippers. Velcro. Synthetic fabric. Large-scale farming. Books. The bible prohibits lots of things: shellfish, cutting hair, and so on, and on and on and…

      I don’t see anyone persecuting “straight” folks for a 50%+ divorce rate in the US. Where is the outrage at elected officials for letting divorce happen? Where is the beat-down for Rush Limbaugh, on his fifth (or seventh, or whatever) wife? Newt Gingrich handing divorce papers to his 3rd wife in the hospital?

      Christianity’s focus on hatred of GLBT folks is telling: they’re scared of being irrelevant, and it’s easy to pick on a group they think they can win against. Whoops – you’ve already lost the battle, and you’re losing your constituency with every outrageous statement of hatred, bigotry, and general crankiness. Focusing on history won’t save the argument, just as professing the world was flat did any good to banish the idea of a round Earth.

    • sdh says:

      By this rationale, many things that Christ didn’t talk about should have an official position in Christianity. Waging war on people who believe different than us. Husbands beating their spouses. Not eating meat on weekends (okay, actually, Christ _did_ talk about that. He said that what you put in your body is not what makes you unclean…). Seeing other races as less than us. The church selling forgiveness for our sins. All of these things were believed by early Christians.
      And we figured out what idiots they were for it.
      In the end, the most important opinion should be Christ’s. Now, he spoke a lot about some pretty specific minutiae. Don’t you think that, if he gave a damn (quite literally) about homosexuality, he would have said something about it?

    • Heather says:

      They got it wrong when they left out the Love of Christ. Regardless of who the other people are; we have been instructed to love EVERYONE and leave the judging to God. The theologians you list were great men of study & devotion but they were never God Himself explaining the manuscripts they studied. This young woman is right; to keep the Church alive we must include everyone at all levels. Where is the Love of Christ in HATE? As for homosexuality, Christ’s Love must be shown there as well, for you cannot say you have the Love of God in you if you hate a group of people because of skin color, religion and yes sexual orientation . Consenting adults should be allowed to commit to another. Particularly when the church chooses to ignore marital infidelities, domestic abuse etc. Those growing up should not be ridiculed and /or forced into classes that attempt to make them “change their minds”. Cleanse yourself of sins then you may earn the right to cast the first stone. But as it happens; these fleshly bodies are difficult to maintain As with many questions, the full answer will not be known until the return of Christ. So until then we should follow His instructions by showing His Love & Peace

  4. Selvi says:

    Matthew Vines, everyone -
    http://www.matthewvines.com/
    Supporting LGBT equality with the Bible’s TRUE love.

  5. Michael Gilsinger says:

    I’m in my forties now, and couldn’t agree more with the spirit of your message. I no longer attend church because of this type of fear based hate. The church isn’t doing GODs work IMHO. Rather they are using the bible to support their traditional views, and calling anyone who disagrees with THEIR version a person against GOD.
    Someone once suggested that SIN is equal in GODs eyes, and that we ALL sin. If that’s the case then we have no business pointing our fingers at others, casting judgement regarding their actions, and hiding behind religion to sanction our actions. Someone also once said, whomever has a clean slate can cast the first stone.
    I see a lot of bible thumping, stone casting, all in the name of what is GODly and just. But oddly it isn’t GOD throwing those stones. So Christians please please look at your own actions and leave others alone to do the same. (I think someone important once said that too)

  6. Librarian says:

    You would fit in really well at a unitarian universalist church.

  7. Stan says:

    We are called to love all people regardless of how ‘good’ or ‘bad’ they may be in our eyes. That includes murderers, thieves, drunks,liars, adulterers, men, women, all ethnicities, people of differing religious beliefs, and those that choose a homosexual life style. Love them all equally and with the full boundless love of Christ.

    The issue is that both sides, conservative and liberal, are unwilling to compromise on what love means. Love ≠ Agreement with lifestyle, and Disagreement ≠ Judgmental Bigotry.

    I am in the age range mentioned by the writer, and she does not speak for me in what she writes about our generation being pushed from the church by legalistic mean spirited Christians. Since when were we instructed to tickle ears and compromise the truth for the sake of not offending people? Hebrews and Ephesians both refer to the word of God as a sword…last I checked those sever limbs.

    Truth is not subjective, its not up for debate, and it is not swayed by Facebook, Twitter, Ellen DeGeneres, Supreme Court, or any number of people who decide any person who doesn’t agree with them is a closed minded religious fanatic.

    Christ came to seek and save the lost, the funny thing about being lost is most people wouldn’t agree they are lost until they want out and can’t find the way. Homosexuality is a sin which is equal with many others in the way that it in itself is enough to separate a person from God and his kingdom, but can be forgiven and all restored to right. It doesn’t become any more or less of a sin because of a civil union. I would vote against any law that proposes to legalize any act that is done in sin.

    That is my 2 (or more) cents. I hope I was able to put into words what I was attempting to and that it doesn’t come across differently than intended. If I had the ability to draw the attention of all people on both sides I would have much to say to most about they way people deserve to be loved and treated and how the speaking of truth, IN LOVE, doesn’t make someone wrong just because you don’t want to hear it or disagree.

    -Just a side note, I think everyone should lighten up a little on Phil. Sure exiling your brother may seem pretty harsh, but he has made a decision to put his kids first. I can’t say my reaction would be much different if my brother we’re a remorseless alcoholic, drug addict, adulterer, or thief…not to mention murderer. The responses I have seen toward him greatly outweigh his post in terms of harshness and lack of love.

    • Riha Elizabeth T. says:

      “I would vote against any law that proposes to legalize any act that is done in sin.”

      So…no sex (at all since regardless of whether or not you’re married, it’s still a sin, which is why it’s believed that children carry the burden of sin from their parents).

      In actuality, since Christianity is a “marriage” between God and Christian, it’s adultery to get married to a person on Earth. Why get married at all anyway? Why date? Why lead a life that does not have God in every moment of it anyway? Why, if your life should be all about God and what he says, do you have materials of this world?

      With your view on things, I seriously hope you aspire to be Mother Theresa. Or a nun without the Catholic overtone.

      • Stewart Simpson says:

        Wow! What a gross exaggeration. The church actually does teach about that marriage. If you read Pope John Paul’s literature of the body, he preached that marriage is the epitome of love. Priest are married to the church. Should a lay minister choose to marry someone on earth, as long as the carnal act is done with the love of god and is open to the conception of life, then the act itself is done with love. Gay people cannot have babies, thus the act is not open to life, and is lustful. Sorry, but the church has been quite consistent on its teachings for some time. Sex should always been open to the miracle of life. Yes, if someone gets “fixed” they violate the churches teachings and the act is purely lustful. Hence, why the church promotes family planning.

        • Mikel says:

          So, if someone is in an accident, or ill and is incapable of having children, you would condemn them from marriage. AS people get older, they become incapable of having children, they should divorce because their marriage is an abomination, all of a sudden, or should they just live in shame, since divorce is not an option? So, everyone will die in shame of their biological condition given to them by god…

          How cracked off yourself are you?

          • Stewart Simpson says:

            Again, let me establish the churches position, “open to the procreation of life.” Just because doctors say a couple can’t have children, doesn’t mean that they can’t. Ever heard of miracles? Doctors don’t know everything either.

          • Mikel says:

            Miracles are fickle things and are open to the interpretation of the individual experiencing them and cannot be interpreted by those around them… quite often. It has also been told that the human body is a miraculous thing and outcomes can never be predicted.

            Besides… wouldn’t it be a miracle if a gay couple conceived a child? Would that convince anyone? Nope, they’d say something was up with that… a miraculous conception is far more likely than a baby born of love and mutual respect for one another. Something that is more prevalent in many gay couples.

          • Stewart Simpson says:

            Argue all you want, but a gay couple cannot conceive a child through natural means. A third party must be involved.

          • Mikel says:

            A lot of church going people have not been able to procreate without a 3rd party intervention… they have lovely, church going families now… blasphemers… I’ll let them know you think so.

          • Alex Cherry says:

            And again I bring up infertile married couples.

        • Nathan says:

          Again…are you saying that same-sex couples should not be allowed to marry based on whether or not they can procreate? Then based on your logic, infertile heterosexuals shouldn’t legally marry either. Sorry ladies with PCOS and uterine/ovarian/cervical cancer survivors! Sorry guys who’ve had a vasectomy, or just too low a sperm count! If you can’t contribute to the overpopulation of the planet, you don’t deserve the same happiness and government protections and benefits that the rest of the breeders have! Sorry!!
          You DO see what a ridiculous position that is… Don’t you?

          • Stewart Simpson says:

            I am merely restating the churches position about sex in general. Sorry if you don’t like it, but it makes sense and has been consistent for some time. Priests serve as examples of celibacy and discipline. Homosexual acts are purely lustful devoid of any chance for the conception of natural life. Hetero sexual acts are still open to the possibility of life how remote a possibility you think it is. Sorry I understand and believe my churches teachings. Sorry you don’t like a valid position because it contradicts your lustful ways.

          • Michael says:

            Nathan your argument is invalid. Homosexuals cannot procreate. Heterosexuals can. If heterosexuals cannot procreate because they are infertile, that is unfortunate, but they can adopt. Children need both a mother and a father. If a child is adopted by gay parents, they will not have the needs satisfied by the mother and the father. Your position is ridiculous, just like everyone else who believes gays should be allowed to marry

          • Mikel says:

            Wow, the idea that children need a mother and a father went out the window with the huge increase in single parent families… where have you been?

            And it’s been proven that having 2 loving same-sex parents fares far better than single parenting, and there is no statistical difference between opposite sex couples raising children (in fact, it shows that same sex relationships put more effort into raising children together than opposite sex couples).

            So that blows your theory out the window.

          • Alex Cherry says:

            Factually speaking, you’re quite wrong on everything you just said in that post.

            Plenty of married heterosexual couples cannot or do not procreate. Should the marriages of infertile couples be invalid, because, by your reasoning they cannot be married.

            On the raising of children by LGBTQ couples, well, I’ll let the American Psychological Association say it all for me:

            http://www.apa.org/pi/lgbt/resources/parenting.aspx

            “On the contrary, results of research suggest that lesbian and gay parents are as likely as heterosexual parents to provide supportive home environments for children.”

          • Nathan says:

            Michael you are an idiot! What makes you think that homosexuals can’t procreate? Homosexuals men or women have the same genital parts as heterosexuals men or women. Your position is more ridiculous! If you’re saying that heterosexual parents can adopt then why can’t be the same with homosexual parents? What are the child needs satisfied by a mother and father you are talking about? Please elaborate and I need a reliable scientific source proving that heterosexual parents can give a better home to child than homosexual parents! Do not make such assumption!

          • Stewart Simpson says:

            I need credible evidence that a gay couple can provide the same ideal home as a straight couple then.

          • Alex Cherry says:

            It’s been scientifically proven that children of LGBTQ couples are no more or less likely to succeed and have happy lives than children of hetero couples. http://www.apa.org/pi/lgbt/resources/parenting.aspx

          • Nathan says:

            Stewart Simpson, that’s your argument? Hahahaha. You know, even if I give you a credible evidence it won’t matter because you are against it to begin with. Straight parents could give ideal home than gay parents? You know how outrageous your claim is? Do you know how many orphans we have now? You know, those kids that were abandoned by their straight parents, those kids that were promised an “ideal home” by their straight parents. There are TONS of potential loving gay parents who could adopt many of the children in foster care or orphanages — the ones that straight parents pass up when they’re busy flying to China or Russia to adopt newborns. But guess what? Since so many people decided they simply don’t like gays — for whatever ridiculous reason — they’ve made it to where many of them CAN’T adopt, thinking somehow that “the gay” will end up taught to those orphans and, whoopsie, we’ll be up to our teeth in gays! Even though 1. most gay people were born to straight parents and 2. most decent people would rather see a child have a loving family and a home of his own, regardless of whether or not his parents were gay. And you are a Christian you say Stewart? To be a Christian is to be Christ like and I don’t remember Christ going through life hating….he taught love, kindness, and yes even acceptance!

        • Nathan says:

          Stewart Simpson your argument is invalid. Your point is not based in fact. I know more than a handful of gays and lesbians that have procreated. Gays and lesbians DO procreate. Some fall in the middle of the spectrum or lean towards the same-sex love, but still procreate.
          But, by your logic, there’s no evolutionary need for those that are born without sex organs or with ambiguous sex organs… There’s no need for those that are born sterile… There’s no need for those that are abstinent or asexual. You’re writing off a LOT of humans with that broad, uneducated brush of yours.

          • Susan says:

            “Priests serve as examples of celibacy and discipline”? Really?

          • Stewart Simpson says:

            Yeah, and every gay person is a flaming homosexual who has five hundred sexual partners. Do you really want to make broad generalizations like that?

          • Nathan says:

            Stewart Simpson, sure! and like your every priest, preacher, bishop, wizard or whatever you want to call them is a pedophile who preys on young little kids and living comfortably in their lavish church while tons of people are starving!

          • Peter Brown says:

            Stewart’s argument is the exact position of the Catholic church, so thank you for sharing it. It’s not his fault that the Catholic Church is about 200 years behind the curve…and I say this affectionately as a Catholic. It’s a slow moving, encrusted organization that is losing membership all over the Western World, and gaining it in Africa and Asia. There’s a lot of good that goes on in Catholic parishes and organizations, but the official position on birth control, homosexuality and womens’ rights does not have the support of most North American and European catholics…hence the empty pews. Those are facts, not opinions.

        • Lena says:

          Please, please, PLEASE tell me which scriptures say that? Give me the book names and the numbers of the precise scriptures that say that the “carnal act” must be open to the conception of life. That is such a crock! The “church” may have been quite consistent on it’s teachings, but the “church’ quite often teaches outside the realm of the New Testament, which is technically all it should truly be concerned with teaching.

          • Stewart Simpson says:

            Are you kidding me? Pope John Paul II’s literature about love. Do you really think everything has to directly quoted from the bible? Are you a literalist?

    • John3:30 says:

      Well said Stan. We shouldn’t separate Love and Truth, God doesn’t.
      How much must we hate someone to not tell them the truth. Eternity depends on it.

      Isaiah 5:20, 21 describe the world around us. Also, they only loved Jesus for a season….. Then the world hated him. The world doesn’t know Him, and will hate His followers. Christ warned His followers of this.

    • Roberto says:

      According to the Bible, we are all sinners (last time I checked – that includes EVERYONE). Sir, with all due respect, what empowers you or anybody else to point a finger at anyone else and call him/ her a SINNER because they are gay? Gay, straight, women, men, black, white, and everyone in between, we are ALL sinners. Are you proposing that there are certain levels of sinners? Better SINNERS than others? I guess my point is, I don’t see a difference. How is that different from a gay person pointing their finger at you, calling you a SINNER because they consider you a hater based on some of your views, hate being clearly another SIN?

      Are you including yourself anywhere on your list in your first paragraph? Where you encourage to love equally ‘murderers, thieves, drunks,liars, adulterers, men, women, all ethnicities, people of differing religious beliefs’. Where are you on that list? What makes you different from all the others listed there? Do you think, arrogantly I might add- that your position is somewhat over other people’?

      You are making an assumption when you say ‘those that choose a homosexual life style’. Some Christian, deeply religious men and women have devoted their lives to try to change their nature because of statements like this, so they can fit in and avoid rejection from their families and communities. Some of them have even taken their lives in the process, when their efforts have been unsuccessful. I wondered if they would agree with “‘[choosing]‘ the homosexual life style”. Do you still think it is a choice for all gay people to be gay? How would you explain their struggle? Who in their right mind would voluntarily choose to have a more difficult, isolated life? I would love to hear how you can provide evidence of how the sin of homosexuality can be completely ‘restored’. What has been your experience in this subject?

      The most arrogant statement I read on your post was when you stated that the “truth is not subjective”. Are we to assume that only YOU or your church possess the knowledge of absolute truth? Sir, that is preposterous. If you are talking about our religion and your faith, go ahead and believe what you will. Newsflash- most extreme religious groups would have the same argument about ‘absolute truths’. But you know what? It is a free country. However, when you apply your “truth” to the rest of the population, and make generalizations about the Supreme Court, you are stepping out of line. Do not mix your religious beliefs with RIGHTS for everyone. The supreme court grants us ALL the SAME rights you have. That includes everyone on your list, not only you, but also… ‘murderers, thieves, drunks,liars, adulterers, men, women, all ethnicities, people of differing religious beliefs’, and people that ARE gay.

      Gay people couldn’t care less if you do not like, tolerate or accept gay marriage. Personally, I don’t like it at all when straight people marry and divorce repeatedly, commit adultery and then go to church on Sunday to deliver a sermon about the sanctity of marriage. But having the right to get married is solely issued by the state, not the church. Church performs weddings; the state issues a marriage license. Act of faith vs. legal right. Two very different things.

      I guess, speaking in LOVE, it would be quite difficult to choose who is right or wrong- the answer will be different depending on who you ask. So, let’s not do that. How about we just focus on just LOVE and include EVERYONE- at least when it comes to equal rights.

      • Roberto says:

        Above reply to Stan’s posting from earlier

        • Stan says:

          Roberto,

          I do not exclude myself from the list I provided, nor from being a fallen man who struggles with his own sin issues. The division I was attempting to make is that there is a difference between sin that is forgiven through a repentant heart and covered by God’s grace, and sin that is embraced and lived out willingly.

          The truth I speak of is not my truth, nor my churches truth, but the word of God himself. If you do not believe as I do that the Bible is the infallible and inerrant word of God then I can see how our opinions on this subject are different…however if you do believe that the Bible is how I just described then I don’t understand where your information and version of truth is coming from.

          I completely agree with you on the marriage, divorce, remarriage, preach on Sunday morning about the very things we ourselves are doing. I don’t fault anyone for categorizing the Church as hypocrites because that’s what they have seen in us, and I wish that weren’t the case.

          I apologize if my post came across arrogant, I think of myself as higher than none. A servant and friend to those around me, not a Pharisee or judge.

          • Roberto says:

            Stan, thank you for your reply.

            I guess we view things very differently. I see God as pure love, and I have seen love between a man and a woman, but I have also seen love between 2 people of the same sex. To me, there is no difference. I can’t see it as sinful, because God is love. I am basing that on the scriptures.

            I am not sure if you are restricting some of your views between same sex couples as simple sexual encounters. Sex happens between heterosexual and homosexual couples. Wether you consider certain physical acts as sinful might very well apply to straight couples too. I feel that is a whole different argument. But love between two people… how is that different? Love is just that, love. What is there to forgive? I don’t understand what is there to be repentant of.

            I appreciate you saying that you count yourself in the long list of sinners we have talked about earlier. In that sense, again, I see no difference between someone like you and someone like me. However, I do detect that some people in church (and I am not implying you) have used this argument to cast away gay people. I have lived it. I have seen it many times, sadly. That part I just do not understand. Do you think is because some church goesr view gays as people just embracing and living what they might consider to be a sinful life? Trust me, we are all the same. We work. We come home. We have arguments with our partners. We read the Bible and pray. We cook dinner, and pay taxes. We fight. We love. Just like you. I come from a family of 4 siblings. 2 straight and 2 gay. Raised the same way. All went to college. All had parters/ spouses. All had the same foundation on the Christian faith. Went through tough times and good times together. We had the exact same success rates in long term relationships. Really, we are ALL the same. Sadly, none of us goes to church anymore. Why? Mostly because of these arguments we are talking about here.

            I can also appreciate that your faith gives you the idea that you know the truth as the word of God himself, and I think you are basing it on the scriptures. I am not alone when I say that there are any ways of viewing and interpreting what is written in the Bible, as I am sure you are aware of. To claim your view is the ‘truth’ itself is something that is clearly debatable and fair game for discussion, specifically regarding the context of some passages. I think a lot of scholars will argue some of your positions using the exact same reference you are basing your truths on: the scriptures. Maybe that explains why you claim you can’t understand where my information and version of the truth is coming from. Well, I read the same Bible you read.

            I think singling out homosexuality as a sin over others makes as much sense as picking out another ‘sin’ from the list and make a bigger deal out of it, and use that argument to cast away people. And I have to be clear and say that I do not believe I consider homosexuality a sin. It is not a lifestyle choice either. Being a vegetarian is a lifestyle choice. Physical attraction is not. If you could choose who you are attracted to, then do you think you can actively ‘choose’ to be with someone your own sex voluntarily? You would get a similar reaction from a gay person if you ask them to ‘choose’ to be with someone of the opposite sex. If gay people could “switch” their attraction according to some, shouldn’t that be true for straight people too? Does that sound ridiculous to you? Many gay people have tried to change their instinct and go against their attraction. Could you imagine doing that yourself to stay in the ‘truth’ with the people you love?

            I really do appreciate your post, and I am trying to understand your words and put myself in your shoes, I really am. I also appreciate your respectful tone, and all I am trying to do here is to learn where you are coming from. All I can hope is that you can see my views as well, and put yourself in my shoes too.

  8. Mallory says:

    I think my biggest issue is that people are so against gay marriage. But my question is, why does it affect you? How does it affect you? When two homosexuals get married, do two Christians die? I’ve honestly never understand that part of this whole scenario. Why can’t you just let people be happy, and let God judge them when it is their time? Why do you have to?

    • Michael says:

      Because America needs moral standards. Letting gays get married is just another thing that crosses the moral line. Not saying there can’t be gay people, but they cannot get married

      • idahogie says:

        Would you have made the same ignorant comment when interracial marriage was being defended? “America needs moral standards!”

        Your religion is the very last place I’d go for moral guidance, btw. I don’t know where you think you have the right to impose your mythology on others.

      • Caite says:

        What is a moral standard, and how does gay marriage change such standards

      • Alex Cherry says:

        You don’t need religion to have morals. Morality is doing what is right; religion is doing what you’re told.

        Explain to me, without using religion, why same-sex marriage should not be legal? Note: Legalizing same-sex marriage does not require your bigoted church to perform same-sex marriages; as with all religious ceremonies, you will retain your right to be backwards bigots.

      • Roberto says:

        Moral standards imply doing the right thing. Morality can exist without religious beliefs.

        America stands for equality for ALL. If we are ALL equal, why are gay people denied of the same rights straight people have when it comes to marriage? Why are tax breaks and pension rights allowed for some, but not for all?

        Don’t you feel there are two things we are considering here, rights vs. religious acceptance? Marriage is a matter of the former.

  9. Larissa says:

    If God wanted us all to be the same, why would he make us all different?

  10. Twister says:

    As a Christian, and as someone who is friends
    with gay people, it is not my place to JUDGE!!
    I love them as I should, and have been taught
    as a Christian.

  11. EG says:

    I’m SO glad I’ve found the freedom that atheism has given me. I’m straight, grew up in a lovely church filled with dear people (albeit rather judgmental to those not in our “club”), and/but thankfully had parents who taught me to NOT live in fear – which is what all this hooplah is about,anyway. Fear of hell. (God is love and he created hell? My parents are morally superior to God, in that case.) Fear of someone different than you. Fear of erosion of your culture. The fear’s not necessary. My morals and values haven’t changed much since I left the church. , What I remember most fondly is the sense of community and goodwill. The dogma, and a study of its history, however, killed it for me. When studied -without fear of damnation and honoring the brain and other gifts we’re born with – i’ts tough to believe anyone could continue living in the dogma house. I don’t believe in hell, except for that which some religions are creating here for our fellow beings. I believe homosexuality is as natural as brown eyes. And when I need a dose of that special “sacred” time with lovely (and enlightened, non-judgmental) people, I attend a Unitarian service, I’m not asked to accept silly, outdated, hateful dogma. I commend you. I loved this piece. And I hope the Church listens. You’ve got the right stuff. No matter which belief you choose to cling to, there’s no harm in “Love your neighbor as yourself.” There IS harm, however, in the utter hubris and arrogance that allows someone to believe – based on a book about which they may have memorized, but know little about – that they are the mouthpiece of God, know God’s mind, and are free to judge, condemn, or “accept” their fellow human beings.

    • Michael says:

      Shut your mouth you don’t know what your talking about

    • Michael says:

      Your parents are superior to God? Are you kidding me? Unbelievable. I am speechless.

      • idahogie says:

        He said his parents were MORALLY superior to god. Which is a very reasonable statement. They probably aren’t genocidal cretins who demand subservience on the threat of eternal damnation.

        But they are also superior to god in general, as god doesn’t even exist.

        • Michael says:

          Believe what you want Idahogie. But believe me, the world needs to start believing in God again. And when using His name, it should always be capitalized: God; whether you believe in Him or not.

          • idahogie says:

            No god gets unearned respect from me. You Christians have come to expect that (and you’re demanding it), because you’re privileged in our society. Luckily, that is changing fast.

            And the world needs to stop believing in silly invisible friends and start relying on logic and rationality. Faith is the absolute last thing we need.

          • idahogie says:

            And I notice that in your hurry to be huffy, you failed to address how you misread EG’s comment completely. Care to apologize, or at least fix your error? Isn’t that what the god of your bible would have you do?

          • Alex Cherry says:

            Well, that’s a bit absurdist. Do I have to capitalize “Gods” if I refer to Zeus and Hera? I don’t believe in them either, just like I don’t believe in your god.

  12. LJF says:

    I am a teacher and for the last twenty years the public school system has preached to an entire generation that they are “special” and “unique” individuals. I believe this approach in education was meant to encourage students to have confidence in their own abilities so that they could go out and educate themselves and become successful. However, looking back I see that it has backfired. Instead of confidently educating themselves for the better of our society, I see young people throwing out the ideals of generations past because those ideals aren’t “special” and “unique”.
    If you want a deeper understanding of what is required of you when seeking a true relationship with God then I suggest you research God’s grace and mercy. If you understand how these two relate to salvation then there should be no disagreement regarding homosexuality or any other sin.

    • EG says:

      I agree that an unhealthy sense of entitlement is prevalent today, but there are some ideals of past generations that, if thrown out, would happily result in saving the baby and tossing out the bathwater. As we did with slavery, for instance. A good education leads students away from a skewed sense of entitlement and towards more rational, critical thought and true self-respect rather than inflated egos; and that leads to a healthy sense of duty and responsibility to their fellow beings. A true relationship with God is not a requirement for that; but for those who cherish their religion, it seems to me it would discourage the judgment of others condemned in the bible.

      • LJF says:

        Real rational, critical thought cannot involve self. Human nature is self serving, arrogant and prideful(one big entitlement). None of these accomplish anything beneficial. I feel that a relationship with God is vital if we are going to achieve a “good education”. A genuine relationship with god is selfless at its root.
        My study of God’s grace and mercy has allowed me to see how much He loves us all. It has also helped me to have compassion on those I would have judged in the past.
        There is “right” and there is “wrong”. We all do both everyday.
        I will not be a judge but I again stress all believers and non-believers to find the definitions of God’s grace and mercy.

        • EG says:

          Now those are some negative basic assumptions you’ve got going there, which don’t speak to highly of God’s ability to create something in his own image -

        • EG says:

          I might also add – that the more you learn and the more you think, the more you realize how much more there is to know. There’s a natural humility that develops from that understanding. And I disagree that a “genuine relationship with god is selfless at its root.” I think it’s just the opposite, actually.

  13. This shows a poor learning of the faith and bad examples by others. It is indeed the job to be in a process of constant conversions to the will of God (which we ALL struggle with up til the moment of death). The gospels reveal that Christ founded the sacrament of marriage to mirror his love for the Church/humanity so that we may raise others in the faith. That and other writings make it clear any sexual relationship outside of marriage (either heterosexual or homosexual) is not what God intended for us. However, sadly some Christians have taken the ban on homosexuality into a hatred of homosexuals. All must realize all have different crosses to bear. Groups like Courage and the latest statements from the Catholic bishops show that those with same sex attraction are our brothers and sisters. Those with SSA need help and prayers like prisoners, addicts of all sorts, and general sinners (we all fit into at least one category).
    2 hours ago · Like

    • preacherjean says:

      The Gospels say no such thing. Read them again.

      • Stewart Simpson says:

        Men guided by the Holy Spirit and reason came to that conclusion. You may think them wrong, but that doesn’t invalidate their reasoning. The lack of a specific text “Homosexuality is bad” does not mean anything. Homosexuality is defined as being purely lustful because it is not open to the procreation of life.

        • Susan says:

          I’m guessing you have a quiverfull.

          • Stewart Simpson says:

            Yeah, 2000 years of well educated individuals, including women as well, along with the lessons of 2000 years of history to boot.

        • EG says:

          That sounds like an adoption of someone else’s beliefs, rather than the result of critical thought. Plenty of people, “guided by the Holy Spirit ” have committed horrific atrocities. Unless one has known these men personally, how can anyone vouch for the veracity of their words? It’s hard to understand how someone can judge another simply because they’re told to.

          • Stewart Simpson says:

            I accept their interpretation of lust. I accept their interpretation of love. I apply those standards to actions I observe and myself. I live my faith. The beauty of religion, to guide and direct the actions of its followers to a more moral existence.

        • It is the gift of God, so that no man may boast. says:

          Stewart you are a treat. A treat indeed. I ahve decided to not comment on any more of your posts, not because I agree or you have “won” but because you are not wanting to engage in a conversation with people but rather using arguments to make points. I have said so many honest things throughout and have been open to a conversation, a “why?” or “when did you start feeling that way?” or “why do you think this is ok?” . Stewart, you are not a ignorant non-thinking human. You obviously care about this issue, so please don’t reply so coldy in person to people. You may not want them to go to hell, but I know you also don’t want them to go kill themselves…….I don’t know you, so it doesn’t make me terribly hurt by your cold-unfeeling (at least in how they come across), comments about an extremely sensitive topic, but please I beg you, examine how you speak to friends, relatives, etc… It can be very detrimental (in a bad way), to be so written off. Thanks. Have a good night.

          • EG says:

            “Beauty” of religion is a misnomer when the “moral existence” it leads to is really a rationalized free pass to judge others. It really doesn’t say much for that brand of morality.

        • Lena says:

          I seem to remember the Bible saying “I warn everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: if anyone adds to them, God will add to him the plagues described in this book…” Revelation 22:18-19

          Now you say that men “guided by the Holy Spirit and reason came to that conclusion”. Who said they were “guided by the Holy Spirit”? Those same men? BS. The Bible does not speak against it. Seems to me the men that hold those powerful positions, who claim to be guided by the Holy Spirit, have added to the Word of God.

        • Alex Cherry says:

          So infertile couples are “purely lustful because [they are] not open to the procreation of life”?

      • Michael says:

        But the Old Testament does. Perhaps you shouldn’t be a preacher….

        • Kathy says:

          How about all of the messages in the Old Testament that fundamentalists ignore? Many believe they are literalists until it comes to issues they don’t want to follow. I have yet to hear any anti-gay person clarify this, and I am sincerely curious.

    • Alex Cherry says:

      So-called reparative therapy is harmful to people. Why do you want to hurt people? How Christian of you!

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Conversion_therapy

  14. [...] wrote what some felt to be a compelling case supporting both gays and Christianity that you should totally check out. Long story short, Dannika believes society will accept gays, as epitomized in “Same [...]

  15. dcrump says:

    Extremely well written, and a caring but direct challenge to the church today and much of its leadership. Love your passion. Thanks for sharing!

  16. PK says:

    You forgot to include Lutheran pastors in your invitation (well, at least the ELCA pastors)!

  17. [...] The Church keeps scratching its heead, wonder why 70% of 23-30 year-olds who were brought up in church leave…my generation, the generation that can smell bullshit, especially holy bullshit, from a mile away, will not stick around to see the church fight gay marriage against our better judgement. It’s my generation who is overwhelmingly supporting marriage equality, and Church, as a young person and as a theologian, it is not in your best interest to give them that ultimatum. dannikanash [...]

  18. Michael says:

    There has to be some moral standards in society. I don’t care if the world is changing. Without moral standards, the world will become a mess. Gay marriage is not okay. Human beings are animals. Name another species of animals that have homosexuals among them. Homosexuality is wrong, and recently, I believe has become “trendy”. Stop the madness now. By the way, I am 20 years old. In the generation that “wants” this. Let me tell all of you who believe our generation is all for this. We all are not, and quite frankly it’s pissing me off that everyone in this generation has been put in this category. America needs to get back to the Church, part of what this country was founded on.

      • Michael says:

        Wow wikipedia…at least you have valid sources.

        • Mikel says:

          Depends on if there are valid sources at the bottom of that wikipedia… oftentimes Wiki brings together information that is all over the internet for convenience… so look at the citations on the page before you condemn it.

          • Michael says:

            Sarcasm. What I am saying is there are not other animals were two males or two females attempt to mate. Gay marriage goes against nature. You don’t see two male dogs or two female dogs attempting to make each other do you? Exactly. That’s what I thought. It all comes back to moral relativity. Once gay marriage is legalized everywhere, who knows what else is next. They are already coming for my guns….which will not happen as long as I am breathing, and they are pushing more and more for legalization of marijuana. Once that is legalized, next thing you know heroin will be legal. But let all you gays get married, so hopefully there isn’t anymore of you.

          • Mikel says:

            You’ve never owned a dog, have you?

            I had one try to mate with me yesterday.

            I politely told him he’s not my type.

            (sarcasm? Yes… truth? also, yes).

          • Alex Cherry says:

            They aren’t taking my guns either, buddy. The rest of your post, however, reads like the demented ravings of a lunatic. Slippery slope fallacies abound!

          • Michael says:

            Mikel, I have 4 dogs. All labs. Real dogs. They never hump my leg. They aren’t some little dog with shit for brains. They attempt to mate the female when she is in heat.

          • Mikel says:

            So, you have abnormal dogs and because you don’t catch them doing things you don’t approve of… you think that is ‘normal’?

            I’ve been around hundreds of dogs… your dogs are good at sneaking or you are ignorant, one of those two.

          • Michael says:

            No my dogs aren’t sneaky. I don’t know how we got onto this topic. My dogs are extremely well trained. I have trained them myself everyday. They are pure bread hunting dogs. I do not treat them as people, but yet they are still my best friends. You are the ignorant one Mickel. I guarantee you have never lived in a rural setting. I live in the middle of nowhere and my home town is 600 people. That is real America.

          • Mikel says:

            1. Ignorance is not being able to spell someone’s name when it is right in front of you.

            2. I’ve never lived in the city, I prefer about an hour away from major cities, so I can visit, so you’re wrong there. Guarantee lost there.

            3. I’m glad your dogs are well trained, congratulations, I guess you need something to make you feel fulfilled.

        • EG says:

          Didn’t feel a need to give you a lecture or do the work for you – but you’re free to use your own mind and do some research on your own.

          • Michael says:

            Maybe you should use your own mind and figure out that this country is headed the wrong way. That’s right liberals don’t think though. My apologies

          • Alex Cherry says:

            Very specifically, in which “wrong way” are we headed? I require you to cite examples – hyperbole and exaggeration with vagueries just makes you look the fool.

          • Michael says:

            Mikel, I have plenty to make me feel fulfilled. You my friend do not. And an hour away from the city? Wow really roughing it. Still very close to a metropolitan area. Not that there aren’t great people from metropolitan areas, because there are, but my point is that it is a whole different world than where I come from. I apologize for accidentally misspelling your name, but honestly I don’t give two shits how you spell your name, way to point that one out, I am really ignorant on that point….

          • Mikel says:

            There are far more people ‘roughing it’ in metropolitan areas, btw. Living far from a city with all the luxuries of home is not roughing it.

            I’ve gone camping and had more amenities and provisions than some people. (yep, us ‘city folks’ sometimes know how to camp, too… with plastic houses, and far-wood, and skilits and all that kinda stuffs.)

            Bad English used on purpose, just in case you wanted to pretend I was hillbilly, or you understood it better.

        • Stewart Simpson says:

          I guess gay people are just animals, and thus should be treated like them…..

        • Alex Cherry says:

          Oh wow, you don’t know how to scroll down to the bibliography and resources sections!

          Dolt.

          • Michael says:

            Alex, I am in college right now and have done numerous research papers. I am in the middle of a 20 page research paper right now as we speak. My professor is a research fanatic. I know more about research than you know. As for what is wrong with the way we are headed: legalization of marijuana, legalization of gay marriage, more and more people on food stamps and welfare, and trying to control the 2nd Amendment. These are the things that are currently wrong with this country. We are becoming more and more like Europe every day, and that scares me. We broke away from a European country (England), and now we seem to be headed in that direction. People do not know what real America is. People who live in big cities think that everywhere else is just like the big city. Let me tell you it is not. Take a trip to rural South Dakota, Kansas, Nebraska, any place like that. That is real America. Not some big city.

          • Roberto says:

            Real America? A small farming town in the middle of rural Dakota?
            America is every corner of this country. With everyone in it.

            We are ALL America. Pursuing the same. Hopefully with the same rights.

          • Alex Cherry says:

            If you are as familiar with citing references, it strikes me as funny that you ignored the six or so pages of them at the bottom of the article while attacking the source – what’s the deal with that?

            Regardless, I just can’t say I agree with you on much of what you say. Legalization of marijuana? Why not? Stacks of peer-reviewed studies show that marijuana is less harmful than alcohol, is proven not to be addictive, and it actually has a few benefits for those who are sick (appetite stimulation, non-narcotic pain relief, etc). Legalize it and tax the hell out of it. Not to mention that the stuff is illegal in the first place primarily due to the wood pulp paper lobbies a century or so ago. Help is a stronger, longer lasting fiber in both clothes and rope, hemp paper is more durable than wood pulp, and best of all, it’s a renewable resource. We don’t have to cut down hundred year old trees to print books; we can just harvest this season’s crop, and plant another one next year! We’re concerned with economic downturn and crime, and in one fell swoop, we can help with both issues.

            You obviously know my opinion on gay marriage, and so far, no one commenting on this article has offered more than a religious objection, and I think we agree that we shouldn’t start imposing one religious viewpoint as law, since it’s a rather slippery slope.

            I do agree with you on the Second Amendment; I strongly support the right to bear arms.

          • Alex Cherry says:

            Oh yeah, forgot something. “Real America”? Are you kidding? What makes a rural farming town in a population smaller than my high school more “real” than a city? Do you somehow think that your experiences are more valid than others because you grew up differently than they did? Does being a farmer (or rancher or whatever) make you somehow better than the rest of us?

            Howabout this, youngin’? I’m a United States Marine. I *fought* for this country. I picked up a rifle and stood side by side with people of all colors, creeds, and backgrounds in battle. Little hick white boys like you, black city rats, Mexican immigrants, Jewish rich kids.. Know what’s funny? We all bled the same color, and fought for the same cause.

            That makes me a REAL American. You haven’t served, so clearly you’re not a REAL American, are you?

            How does being trumped in your self-righteousness make you feel? Was it productive that I can dismiss your opinion even more easily than you can dismiss mine for some arbitrary standard that doesn’t even matter?

          • Michael says:

            Alex, I thanked you in a post earlier for serving this great country. We owe our deepest gratitude to brave young soldiers like you who defend our freedom with your life. We will be forever in debt to you. The world needs more soldiers like you. Unfortunately we do not see eye to eye on some certain issues and that is what makes America great. We have the right to voice our own opinion. We always will. It is unfortunate that I have received a lack of respect on this page, because I am going against the minority, but I always like a good challenge and a good debate, even when they do get heated. Thank you again for your service to this great country. Soldiers are the real heroes. However; I feel that you rubbed in the fact that you are a soldier. Never mind though.

          • Alex Cherry says:

            Oh, you’re absolutely right. I have rubbed the fact that I’m a Marine (not a soldier, picky I know, but there’s a difference) in several faces in the thread. I find it a useful to support my point that if anyone deserves freedom and happiness, it’s the people that fought to protect yours.

            Isn’t that ironic? That you’re attempting to deny me the freedom that I fought to earn for you?

            I really, honestly, hope that makes you feel like crap. Yes, you get a lack of respect from me (and others). Get used to it, until you change your mind; illogical bigotry engenders disrepect. Racists don’t get respect either, if it makes you feel better, so you’re not alone.

          • Mikel says:

            *thumbs up*

    • Stewart Simpson says:

      Thank you so much. Those of us in this generation against this need to speak up more and quit letting the minority define the discussion for the majority. We need to kick them off the megaphone for us.

    • preacherjean says:

      You have engaged in a logical fallacy. You said that human beings are not animals, but then you go on to ask for another species of animals that engage in homosexual behavior. This makes no sense, but here’s a source anyway.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_animals_displaying_homosexual_behavior

      Two other points – 1) homosexuality is neither trendy nor new, and 2) this country was not founded on the Church.

      • Stewart Simpson says:

        I state that the human condition is to conquer is carnal nature. That is not a logical fallacy. Also, this nation was founded on Christian principles regardless of what you believe or not. Get over it. There was not some legal standard back then. Morality dictated the writing of the Constitution. Those men derived their morality from the good book. Get over it.

      • Michael says:

        Bullshit this country wasn’t founded on Christianity. One nation under God

        • Mikel says:

          One nation under god was added WAY later in our history than the foundation…

          “Half a century ago, at the height of anti-Communist fervor, Congress added the words ”under God” to the Pledge of Allegiance. It was a petty attempt to link patriotism with religious piety, to distinguish us from the godless Soviets. But after millions of repetitions over the years, the phrase has become part of the backdrop of American life, just like the words ”In God We Trust” on our coins and ”God bless America” uttered by presidents at the end of important speeches.”

          http://www.nytimes.com/2002/06/27/opinion/one-nation-under-god.html

          • Michael says:

            I don’t want to get into an argument with you about whether or not this nation was founded on Christianity, because it was.

          • Mikel says:

            I don’t want to argue with you about it either, since it was founded based on religious freedom.

            But, I will give you every right to be wrong if you want.

          • Alex Cherry says:

            As you are making the affirmative claim, please support it with evidence.

          • Mikel says:

            *bow*

            I could have used a Wiki… but I decided it would be laughed at… so, I figured I’d choose one of the 50 other pages I found stating that.

      • Michael says:

        First off I said human beings were animals….can you read? Second off this country was founded on Christianity….One Nation Under God. God needs to come back into this country

        • EG says:

          Maybe you missed the reply: “Under God” was added during the McCarthy era. My parents – and your grandparents – grew up saying “one Nation, Indivisible”

          • Stewart Simpson says:

            Irrelevant to the evaluation of the authority and mentality of the men creating the Constitution.

          • Mikel says:

            Besides the fact that they purposely left it out?

          • EG says:

            Irrelevant to the authority of the writers of the constitution who were products of the Enlightenment, and many of them Deists? OK.

        • Michael says:

          EG you are a fool.

          • EG says:

            Michael, you are indulging in logical fallacies. We are fellow citizens with a right to our own opinions – so if you disagree with me, fine. But that response was (I hope) beneath you. If it isn’t, it should be. And in any case, it says a lot more about you than it does about me.

          • Nathan says:

            Ah you are one of those people… Your life is about what’s written in the Bible seeking for light but not for Christ. No wonder you have a nasty attitude. Not very Christ- like. Yikes!

          • Nathan says:

            It seems that only petty arguments can be had when logic falls on deaf ears. The ones who have spoken out against our actions do so with empty religious rhetoric and blatant prejudices that are, to them, incontrovertible. Discussions about the matter, in this regard, are pointless.

            Michael, I feel sad for you…You need to read more.

        • Caite says:

          Which brand of Christianity was it founded under? They are quite different, you know.

    • Sam says:

      The country was founded on religious freedom and freedom from religion. I’m not a Christian. I don’t care what the Church does. I think the author of this letter makes a fantastic point, and I feel for her frustration.

      I am however an American. Just as American as you. And as an American I disagree completely that America “needs to get back to the Church”. The bible contains the rules of your religion, it does not govern our country. And it does not have even the slightest, miniscule, itsy-bitsy bit of influnce on our laws. It has no authority in congress.

      America needs to keep being America. Evolving with the will of the people. Changing with the times. America should be an example of tolerance and justice and democracy for the rest of the world. We are not a religious country, even if we have a religious populace. We are an accepting country. American will never be a finished product, but it must keep moving forward, not backwards.

      Homosexuality may be “wrong”, it may be “trendy”, it may be all the things you think it is. But it is not your place to tell me how to live my life as an American. This is not something we should vote on. This is not something where my neighbor’s opinion should matter. We are a democracy, but we vote on taxes, not on personal freedom. This is my life. And this is a country where I’m free. Aren’t I free to live my life?

    • Maryjane says:

      If you’re so dedicated to getting back to God by the biblical sense, don’t forget to get your slaves and not mix the fabrics in your clothing… Oh, and your woman belongs barefooted in the kitchen. You can’t pick and choose which part of the Bible you believe in. I’ve been reading that a lot lately, and I think it applies to the WHOLE Bible. Don’t you go picking and choosing either or you’ll end up in hell fire and brimstone for being just s hypocritical. Oh, what’s that? That section is irrelevant because we are a more civilized society now?? How do you think that came to be? You think when African Americans were fighting for civil rights whites got up there and quoted from their Bibles how their slaves needed to behave? Your decision to follow the Bible includes all of the Bible, not just the part about being against homosexuality. It’s a double standard and everyone can see it.

    • Alex Cherry says:

      Well, frankly, almost all of them do. Also, most of the Founders were deists, and spoke strongly *against* religion.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_animals_displaying_homosexual_behavior
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homosexual_behavior_in_animals

  19. Reblogged this on adameickmeyer and commented:
    Whoever wrote this pretty much summed up my relationship with the Catholic Church over the years. I will not bow down to an authority that preaches hate and bigotry.

    • Stewart Simpson says:

      Just because they don’t condone your lust? Wow, okay. Maybe you should truly understand the Catholic Churches position rather than generalize the Church because of a bad priest.

      • Caite says:

        Your dedication to attacking those who have lost faith in the Catholic Church is astonishing. The Church is wrong about gay people. The Church is wrong about women. The Church was wrong about men of colour for centuries until they realised they needed them to increase dropping numbers in the seminaries.

        And until they catch up to the rest of humanity, and start embracing people of faith without regard for their gender, race or sexuality, the Church is going to continue to die off as those who have been alienated and outcast choose to go it alone, either as lapsed people of faith or as atheists and agnostics.

  20. Remmie says:

    I really don’t know what to say. I have had many gay friends; my former brother-in-law was gay (he sadly died of Aids 2 years ago). These are my “creds.” I don’t hate gay people; but as Christian, a born-again one, who really, really loves the Word of God and the Lord, I do not agree that Gay Marriage is acceptable to God, nor do I believe it is “ok.” Does that mean I should not LOVE others including my true enemies? NO! Heaven Forbid! God loves Gay people! But God does not LOVE people and leave them alone! He CHANGES THEM and their view of SIN! I too have met hateful people who where condemning; I left them in the ‘dust.’ Explore your relationship with God through Christ!! HE is Faithful!! He knows your heart! IF you seek HIM, you will find HIM! And then He will CHANGE you to be like HIM!

    • Lanie D says:

      Love the Sinner, Hate the Sin?

      What do actions look like? Does that mean you support our right to civil marriage? Does it mean you don’t say nasty things behind our back but you secretly cringe at the idea of us adopting kids?

      I am really curious , because I want to know what this kind of “love” you profess looks like.

  21. cindy says:

    that was awesome so well put

  22. Jerry says:

    How about every just worry about themselves and be good people. Stop trying to put your belief, science theory, opinions into other’s lives. Live life full-respect others, embrace differences and treat others how you want to be treated. If you want to tell someone else how wrong they are because of your belief-then they have the right to do the same. What if you are all wrong…by the way? When it comes to the end-life is measured by quality, not by how many people you converted to “your side”.

  23. ashley says:

    The Bible is pretty clear on homosexuality, Christians don’t hate or dislike or even dislike gay people. We just don’t approve of their lifestyle since Jesus does not. We DO however love them, just as Jesus does. We accept them and hang out with them just as Jesus would. It does not mean we are hateful or homophobic. We just believe what Jesus wrote is truth.

    • Michael says:

      Have you read the Old Testament? I studied Theology, and particularly the Old Testament. There is a story where one of Noah’s sons looks at him while his is asleep naked….big sin in God’s eyes

    • Michael says:

      And, Jesus did not write the Bible. How ignorant are we today?

    • Kathy says:

      Ashley, I am curious. What did Jesus say about homosexuality? Not the Bible, but Jesus.

    • Alex Cherry says:

      That’s okay. We forgive you for your disgusting heterosexuality. Remember, it’s okay to be a breeder so long as you don’t actually have sex.

      Also, the stench of your self-righteousness offends me.

      • Michael says:

        Disgusting heterosexuality? You mean the natural way we were born?

        • Alex Cherry says:

          *rolleyes*

          It was sarcasm, just in case you couldn’t figure that out. Funny, too; I’m quite sure I was born homosexual. I had crushes on other boys all the way back to elementary school. I wasn’t ever abused, grew up in a two parent upper-middle class family, et cetera, et cetera.

          So if I was born this way, just like you were born disgustingly straight, and God doesn’t make mistakes, where does that put your argument again?

  24. [...] yesterday, my friend posted a blog to my Facebook. In the blog post, a young woman writes an open letter to the church, about the stance of many young people on Christianity and homosexuality. For her, the division [...]

  25. [...] It’s a misrepresentation of what that symbol means.Read More [...]

  26. Frank says:

    When I was 20, I wanted to strengthen my Christian faith, and embarked on a project to read the whole Bible, cover to cover. Not like you would read a book, but just a page or maybe two every morning, and then I would think about my reading during the day. It took a long time, of course, but I did it.
    I dare you to do it too – it may change your life in unexpected ways.

  27. sinkissed says:

    Reblogged this on sin-kissed and commented:
    YES! Someone who got it right!

  28. Junior says:

    Science does not hold to public opinion nor politics, it’s a process for us to explain the reality of the world we live in regardless of what we believe.

    Homosexuality was removed as a mental disorder because psychologists believed bullying was a cause, that later gave way to the finding that some people may be inherently born with the condition. That notion certainly favored liberal’s understanding of it. However, as science has progressed, it’s been shown in recent studies that the sex hormones responsible for homosexuality in both men and women have strong environmental causes. The high stress levels of the pregnant mother, pre-natal pharmaceuticals, phthalates used in plastics, and endocrine disrupting chemicals we are all exposed to have all been found to screw up gender and orientation in many different species as well as people.

    For instance: when a fetus is exposed to a chemical that mimics human sex-hormones it can masculinize the brain regardless of gender, causing girls to have “boy-brains” or boys to have over-masculinized brains which is fundamentally what Autism is. Both homosexuality and Autism have been on the rise for years.

    People simply aren’t “born-that-way”, pollution is causing many hormonal disorders in our generation.

    Regardless of what you believe, knowing the facts helps us all make better judgements.

    • Kathy says:

      Junior, homosexuals have been around since the beginning of time.

      • Junior says:

        Of course, but at very low levels, war and stress have been around for a long time as well. The point is that recent populations have dramatically increased(~ 3% now) and is due to unnatural conditions.

        I’m not making this stuff up, it’s published data.

  29. Matthew says:

    I guess I missed the part of Scripture which says that we have to hate people. Just by calling sin for what it is does not mean you hate somebody. But it’s absolutely wrong and lying to people to tell them, if you are a Christian, that what the Bible calls sin isn’t actually sin at all. The issue is that people don’t see it as sin.

    I have gay friends. And they know what the Bible says. That doesn’t mean I hate them. I love them just the same. Just as God loves us despite our faults. But when I start saying my issue of pride (for example) isn’t sin at all, then I go directly against the Word of God.

    The church needs to love people. And it needs to love gay people. Just as it needs to love the outcasts that Jesus loves. He hung out with the prostitutes and the sinners…. And He loves those who killed him… The weak and those in sin… You and me. We need to love people. And the most loving thing to do is to point people to the cross. It is there that God, through the death of His Son, has taken care of sin. His death and resurrection has made it possible to be with Him, forever. But telling people that sin isn’t sin is going against God.

    The Bible isn’t up to your interpretation, but God’s. You can choose not to believe it if you want. But saying that homosexual behavior is sin (not worse than any of the sin I commit) does not mean you hate someone. It means that we all have our struggles. And it means we just need to come to Jesus. And coming to Jesus doesn’t mean we will never sin again…I still struggle with sin everyday. It means He will work on us and that one day, sin will be done away with, once and for all. Somehow we made homosexual sin worse than others… It’s no worse than heterosexual sin.

    Who do gay people need? Jesus. Who do straight people need? Jesus. Who do Muslims, Hindus, Jews, Atheists, and Christians need? JESUS. Who do I need? JESUS. Who do you need? JESUS.

  30. Nat says:

    I am a Christian, never used to believe but now do. There is talk about this in the Bible. It speaks about Churches being “religious” but not in the way you think religious means. In the Old Testement there were comandments and laws put in place by God for everybody to live by and obey. In a nut shell Laws and rules were put in place to bring people to the end of them selves. To make people realise that they are not perfect and never will be living under law. Then God sent Jesus who lived perfectly without fault or sin and in his everyday life he spent time talking about these things to people. Jesus hung out with common people, rich people, poor people, some with everyday jobs, some were prositiutes and addicts, people were sick or had sick Children, some that were mentally ill, ect all kinds of people. Jesus was killed by these “religous people” they didnt believe that their own God sent him. So what we have today is a religous group of churches that stem from a really old backround of Laws and rules that they still keep to this day. You feel rejected you when you walk into their church. You dont even have to be gay to feel rejected. This is the type of church that put people off God completely. The truth is they never new God nor did they reconise him when he came as Jesus. They rejected him. If you actualy read about Jesus he accepted people where they were at. He didnt say clean your hands put nice clothes on before you talk to me. He said come as you are.. In other words I accept you as you are. So then what people really need to realise is that there are “religoius” churches who still practice law and then there are churches that accept every kind of person Just as Jesus did. That includes Gays

  31. bonster says:

    I understand the frustration of the author; surprisingly I felt that same frustration in my younger years about women’s issues, war, civil rights. Many of us in the church have been welcoming, open and working for justice for years. I would ask that your generation not paint with broad strokes or call us irrelevant. I have even read a blog–I hope it was satirical but that wasn’t clear–whose author wished all the boomers in the church would just die already but leave their money to his/her generation who could do it all so much better. We oldsters am pushed to the margins rhetorically if not in reality. (I cannot get a call whereas all my younger classmates have done so.) Please treat those of us who have been carrying the faith forward for many years with the dignity and respect you crave. We can accomplish much more if we realize we are all in this together! I vow to treat you as I want to be treated.

  32. I stumbled across this blog and must say, reading the above post and comments was incredibly interesting. Dare I even say where I sit on this fence or would I too just get attacked… haha.
    Great writing!
    Subscribed..
    Kel

  33. Van says:

    I don’t think you understand God at all. God does love all and accept all, but He isn’t about to let you mess with His standards of holiness. It’s one thing for Jesus to accept a person for who they are and it’s a completely different thing Him accept their sin and to say, “It’s OK, you’re just being true to yourself.”
    I agree with you on the point that there is a lot of twisted churches out there. God’s idea of the church has been molded and shaped to fit the people of the world, so in result: yeah, sometimes it’s not uncommon to hear someone “preach hate at the service.”
    Mark 7: 20-22
    20 And he said, “What comes out of a person is what defiles him. 21 For from within, out of the heart of man, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, 22 coveting, wickedness, deceit, sensuality, envy, slander, pride, foolishness…”
    If we start to accept “sexual immorality” then we are lowering God’s standards greatly. If we start to accept “sexual immorality” then we accept “theft, murder, adultery,” etc. Just remember that people have confused two very important things: the acceptance of a person and the acceptance of that person’s sin.

    • Bridget says:

      The church fully accepts divorce. Yet Jesus himself said it was hugely wrong. The church allows divorced people to remarry and to serve in full ministry… just some scriptural food for thought. (The church allows something with out any hesitancy that Jesus actually said was wrong yet will strongly hold gays at an arms length for their lifestyle. That’s a contradiction.)

      • Van says:

        To say that “the church fully accepts divorce” is way over generalizing. i have known quite a few churches to really strive through marriage counseling, so that it doesn’t happen. You are probably right about some churches allowing divorced people to remarry, but if that church was fully following God’s word then they wouldn’t have allowed it in the first place.
        “Serv[ing] in full ministry shouldn’t have anything to do with the sins you have committed. If you know the bible, then you know that some of our greatest heroical figures like Apostle Paul or King David were sinners. We’re all sinners! There’s no scale on which we should be trying to outweigh one person’s sin to another’s.
        Romans 3: 23
        “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.”
        Like I previously stated in my first reply to this post, there are a lot of twisted churches out there. Divorce should have never been allowed in the first place, but the law made it OK. You don’t think that the church didn’t put up a fight about it? But it became a norm in the world; just like sexual immoral relationships and marriages will most likely become the norm far into the future. (There are churches out there who refuse to remarry people.)
        So, for now, the church needs to be wary of who they allow serving on their full time ministries. There are standards they need to be trying to uphold. Since gay marriage is a hot topic right now, they can’t be sending the message that they think it’s OK by allowing people fully active in their gay lifestyle to work in their ministry. I personally know of some gay people who serve, but it’s because they are trying to live by the church’s standards.
        On a side note, marriage was God’s idea. Personally, I think it should have never become a thing of the law, because that indicates that there wasn’t a separation between church and state. However, since it is in the LAW, then whether or not gay marriage should be allowed should not concern the CHURCH. It’s OK for the church to have an opinion like anyone else. I would just hope that when a gay couple decides to get married that they don’t do it in the church. Moreover, I hope that the church would refuse it. After all, it doesn’t need to be a preacher that marries you; obtaining a license to marry is something that anyone can get.

        • Nathan says:

          Church and State exists for a reason. Not everyone believes in God, and, therefore, “God’s law” does not apply to them. Your God has no say over the constitution. If you want a theocracy, there are plenty of places where religious dictatorship reigns. Look at the Middle East to see how that’s working out.

          • Van says:

            I think you missed the part where I agree with you… I said, “whether or not gay marriage should be allowed SHOULD NOT concern the church.”

    • Alex Cherry says:

      Where in the Bible does it define what “sexual immorality” is? Does a blowjob count? Maybe a handie? What about fetish gear? Is it okay to use a St. Andrew’s Cross in my sex life if I’m married to the person on it? Are ball-gags okay with God, so long as it’s a married heterosexual couple?

      • Van says:

        Look, of course the bible doesn’t go into detail on that stuff. Quite frankly, I don’t think people want to know what you do in your married life. Read Leviticus 20:10-26. It gives you an idea of what God calls to be immoral or impure. I know that it seems kind of overboard in regards to what should happen if one commits one of these sins (i.e. be put to death), but that’s just how holy He is. That’s how high His standards are and man has always tried to lower those standards.
        2 Timothy 4: 3
        For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions.

        • Alex Cherry says:

          So you don’t know what it is, you just ASSUME homosexual sex is in there. What about lesbians? Do you assume for them, too?

          • Van says:

            Did you read Leviticus 20: 10-26 or shall I copy and paste it into the reply?

          • Alex Cherry says:

            So have you touched the skin of a pig? Cut your hair or trimmed your beard? The fact that Leviticus covers Temple Law has been established in this blog (and everywhere else on the planet).

            If you want to apply that rule, I’m coming over to check your closet for mixed fibers, and then I’m going to organize the neighborhood to stone you to death for cursing your parents (because we all did, at one point or another).

            Man, for a Bible Thumper, you’re pretty bad at this. You should know the Bible AT LEAST as well as your opponent if you’re going to walk around thumping people with it.

          • Van says:

            This is a reply to yours below. Look, I don’t want to get into the history of the OT verses the NT with you. If you want a more in-depth analysis there are plenty of commentaries out there.
            There are many places in the NT after Jesus comes and Christianity was established that give descriptions on sexual immorality like Romans 1:26-28 and 1 Timothy 1: 10.
            I get it, man. I don’t know you, but if you are a believer then you are trying to justify your sin. And if you’re not a believer then, honestly, I don’t know why you care so much to bash the Christian faith. People who don’t feel threatened by other religious views don’t try to go around and stir debates or arguments, because there is no reason for it! So, if you’re gay and you hate the church then why are you letting it get to you so badly? You must feel some sort of cognitive dissonance…
            I wish you the best. I really do.
            And, Bible Thumper? Really? lol My ‘thumps’ were pretty weak, so stop complaining.

          • Alex Cherry says:

            “People who don’t feel threatened by other religious views don’t try to go around and stir debates or arguments”

            Because your people are busy oppressing mine by trying to legislate your beliefs into law and make me (even more of a) second class citizen.

            Of course I fear your religion – there is no more dangerous enemy than a fanatic. Of course, if you guys would stop trying oppress us, I would be MUCH less inclined to fear you.

          • Van says:

            Last thing I am going to say to you: stop being ignorant and over generalizing every INDIVIDUAL Christian. I am sorry that you have experienced persecution. I do believe that people of the Christian faith should be spreading love and not picking and choosing who they love. (When I say spreading love, I mean showing complete acceptance of a person, but not their sinful decisions. There is a difference.) I am, also, sorry that you feel oppressed.
            But c’mon, open your eyes! Yes, the Christian church has a very strong opinion on this, but they really have NO control in legislative decisions. You said it yourself: they are “trying to legislate” their beliefs. There IS a separation between the church and state, so blame the government, man, for feeling like a ‘second-class’ citizen.
            I’ll be praying for you whether you want them or not, Alex Cherry, because I believe prayer works. You obviously feel very handicapped by all of this, with your many comments all over the place, and my prayer is that you find peace within yourself. And, hopefully, one day, peace with God.

          • Alex Cherry says:

            “But c’mon, open your eyes! Yes, the Christian church has a very strong opinion on this, but they really have NO control in legislative decisions. You said it yourself: they are “trying to legislate” their beliefs. There IS a separation between the church and state, so blame the government, man, for feeling like a ‘second-class’ citizen.”

            Well, ain’t that a convenient half-truth! Yes, directly speaking, the churches don’t make law. But they sure do drive it! Why did the LDS spend $20 million dollars to get Proposition 8 passed? As has been pointed out time and time again, the only objection that holds up to the simplest scrutiny is a religious one.

            The churches have the power to change that. They could educate people on the difference between civil and religious marriage, for example. They could preach love and acceptance instead of hatred and exclusion. The churches drive your opinion as a religious person, and they ARE responsible for that.

            “You obviously feel very handicapped by all of this, with your many comments all over the place, and my prayer is that you find peace within yourself.”

            That’s condescending, to say the least. You guys are the one who screwed me up (well, that and PTSD); suddenly you want me fixed? *snort*

          • Mikel says:

            Limiting the scope of one’s knowledge is a shame these days.

            I would rather learn what 10,000 books (and the internet) has to offer as far as knowledge, and I will make up my mind using my intelligence and my ethics.

            Believing 1 book and the 10,000 interpretations of that one book is, I find, very limiting, particularly since it contradicts itself constantly.

            Sorry about your PTSD… I have a couple clients I’m working with that have it… it’s a tough one.

      • Michael says:

        Unbelievable the amount of arrogance you have to use those sort of examples of sexual acts in the same sentence referring to the Bible and God. You sir is what is wrong with this country

        • idahogie says:

          Nobody is required to give your bible respect. It hasn’t earned any. Your belief that it is sacred is just that … a belief.

          I think it’s a shitty book full of evil.

          • Michael says:

            Idahogie you want to join in this now? The Bible is a shitty book full of evil? Where this country is headed scares me. When God used to be in schools, there wasn’t school shootings. Now that we have taken him out, there are. It all comes down to moral relativity. Get God back in the schools.

          • idahogie says:

            Michael — That’s your level of logic? Seriously?

            1. You think your god can be removed from schools by laws passed by town councils. Who would bother worshiping such a puny god?
            2. God worship hasn’t been removed from schools. Anyone who wants to pray can do so at any time. But you mythology followers just don’t get to force everyone else to god worship like you used to.
            3. “When God used to be in schools, there wasn’t (sic) school shootings.” When we taught logic in schools, there weren’t ignoramuses making idiotic statements like this. Equivalent to your logic: “When people rode horses to schools, there weren’t school shootings.” “When people didn’t wear t-shirts, there weren’t school shootings.” See how stupid you sound?

          • Alex Cherry says:

            Given that the first recorded school shooting in this country happened in 1764, I’d say you’re a bit off base there, buddy.

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_school_shootings_in_the_United_States

        • Alex Cherry says:

          Wow, either your sarcasm meter is broken, or you really are that dense.

          Let me explain, very clearly, the point I was trying to make:

          Lots of people like to quote that verse. In many newer translations of the Bible, the verse actually says “homosexual”. However, in the most authentic translation – the King James Version – the term used is “sexual immorality”. I was using something called hyperbole to make a point; that is, I was throwing out extreme examples designed to get a rise out of people in order to make them realize what they were saying.

          The KJV doesn’t define sexual immorality other than to say “don’t cheat on your spouse, don’t rape, and don’t commit incest”. Since it doesn’t actually define homosexuality – or homosexual acts – as sexual immorality except in Leviticus, which is a section on Temple Law that we do not follow (unless you want the mixed fibers, skin of pigs arguments again), how do you know what it means?

          Who interprets that phrase into actual rules? *IS* BDS&M sexual immorality? What about oral sex, anal sex, or manual sex (that’s doing sexual things to someone else with your hands and feet, by the way)? Are those things okay if you’re married? Or if you’re an opposite sex couple? What about if you’re not? Where is the line?

          The Bible doesn’t actually answer those questions; we’re left to interpret them on our own. And THAT is my point.

          Also, if you can’t handle discussing sex and sexuality, you have no place in a discussion about gay marriage. Which actually means that YOU, buddy, are what’s wrong with this country – stubborn people who are uneducated and willfully ignorant of the subject insisting that they know better than people who can actually discuss things without throwing temper tantrums and “EW THATS GROSS” like a second grader.

  34. Bridget says:

    A brave post, well-rounded and thoughtful. Thanks for challenging the church to think. And have compassion. To be archaic… what would Jesus do in this culture? He definitely would use his cross as a political statement (he didn’t back then either). He spent his time with the outcast, the sinner, the shameful. And he loved them transformatively. Oh that the church might begin striving again to be like the Jesus found in scripture.

    Amen sister. :)

    • Bridget says:

      *Jesus would NOT use his cross as a political statement is what I intended to say.

      • Matt says:

        I’m sorry — are you saying the Cross was not political? Last I checked it was an Roman instrument of capital punishment and empire. It was what the Romans used to kill political dissidents, which (among other things) was what Jesus was. I’m not sure it gets more political than that :-)

    • Kathy says:

      So, Heather, people (because of religious reasons) don’t want homosexuals to get married. They are assuming it is for the sex, not because they love each other?
      I would argue that if you were truly friends with homosexuals, you would want your friends, those people you love, to be happy.
      Heterosexuals who have decided homosexuals are just not supposed to have sex or ‘choose’ to have sex with a same sex partner and live a life without a person he/she would feel affection for – just because that’s what they interpret from the Bible, are quite confusing. By the way, I am a heterosexual who truly loves and wants my friends who are homosexual to be happy. I respect that you are passionate about what you believe. But it is difficult to imagine you and people who are gay could have any type of sincere friendship if you feel strongly that they don’t deserve to be happy. And you can deny that, but it comes down to the fact that if they live the way you expect them to, they live unhappy, unfulfilling lives.

  35. [...] And here’s part of a beautiful essay by Danni Kanash about, in part, hearing that song in concert in red-state South Dakota: “An Open Letter to the Church From My Generation.” [...]

  36. jt says:

    Trying to argue with Hipsters and Gays is like slamming your head into a brick wall, except the headaches go away when you stop headbutting the wall.

    • Lana says:

      Awe jt, what a sweet thing to say. I’m glad you’re posting on this wall. I feel edified in the spirit from your loving comment.

  37. KingAdrock says:

    Rand Paul put it best: “The ‘Facebook generation’ can detect falseness and hypocrisy a mile away.”

  38. Tracy says:

    People keep commenting how “Jesus hung out with the outcasts & sinners and loved them”. Yes he did, but he also said, “Now go, and SIN NO MORE.”

  39. Matt H says:

    Congrats for being brave and sharing your voice. Continue to be open to you will keep finding yourself in new and exciting ways.

  40. kelly says:

    well I am impressed “young person”….now just stand up for that baby at it’s most vulnerable age and you have a platform in which I see hope for the future. THAT would be LOVE complete. Too many want “Same Love” and then promote abortion–huh? Love is an all day thing…not when it’s convenient. I believe you are heading in a spiritual direction that will get you what we all want, God’s approval for a life well spent.

  41. [...] today I read Benny’s blog and was directed to this blog which has an Open Letter to the Church from my Generation. It is American, yes, but it reads to any church. It also directed me to this song which I’d [...]

  42. Thank you for posting.. so moving.

  43. Andrew says:

    What is the Gospel of Jesus anyway… http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G7X24_vOWwU

  44. tasa woods says:

    Just another christian gay who wants to say thank you. My god loves all and i truly believe HE is challenging those who don’t.

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