Why are LGBT people so hacked with Christians?

Perhaps secular ears will hear . . .

 

 

 

By Allan Erickson

 

Not long ago a gay couple in West Hollywood hung Sarah Palin in effigy.  That image will loom large in the minds of the Palin children for many years, perhaps for a lifetime.

 

In recent days we’ve seen gay protestors knock a Cross out of the hands of a grandmother, stomp all over it, and commit invective against her.  She is filing charges.

 

http://www.onenewsnow.com/Politics/Default.aspx?id=319132

 

We’ve seen homosexual protestors invade church services Sunday morning and rail against people, shouting threats.

 

We’ve seen what appears to be Anthrax mailed to LDS churches. We have seen protests throughout southern California, and threats of more violence and demonstrations.

 

And we have heard LGBT leaders call Blacks ignorant bigots for voting in favor of Proposition 8 in California.

 

All this is no way to build consensus, invite understanding, or forward the cause of mutual respect.

 

It appears we are incapable of engaging a rational discussion when it comes to the topic of homosexuality.  Many of us in the traditional faith community want to challenge those in the LGBT community to consider: perhaps Christians are not hate-filled homophobes, but instead, rational people with a legitimate point of view.  Why are you so intolerant of our point of view?  Why do you give yourselves permission to do violence against us?  Maybe gay marriage is unhealthy, for everyone?  Regardless, don’t people have a right to an opinion? Do they not have the right to vote their conscience on issues central to the organization of society?

 

The answer is “NO!” if we listen to contemporary gay activists.

 

For those more moderate in approach and sensibility, please try to understand where Christians are coming from.  Quell the emotion for a time and try to come at this with hardcore objectivity and rational inquiry.

 

Our belief is God is very clear in His word.

 

People have the freedom to accept His word or not.  Neither God nor man is forcing anyone to do, or not do, something or other.  Is that plausible to you?  We are simply following the dictates of our conscience.  Do we have the freedom to do so?

 

What does God’s word say about homosexual behaviors and gay marriage?

 

Here are the most often cited passages from both Old and New Testaments.  Please read carefully.

 

‘Do not lie with a man as one lies with a woman; that is detestable.’

(Leviticus 18:22)

 

‘If a man lies with a man as one lies with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable. They must be put to death; their blood will be on their own heads.’ (Leviticus 20:13)

 

[Keep in mind laws in Leviticus were laid down for the Jews at a specific time for specific reasons.  Obviously as Christians we do not believe people should be put to death today.  We live under an entirely new covenant and dispensation, one governed by grace and mercy and love, not the law.  However, God does not change his mind about the nature of sin or move from calling something detestable to calling it blessed or sanctioned.  This should be obvious.]

 

‘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.’

(Romans 1:26-27)

 

‘Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.’ (1 Corinthians 6:9-10)

 

‘ . . . knowing this: that the law is not made for a righteous person, but for the lawless and insubordinate, for the ungodly and for sinners, for the unholy and profane, for murderers of fathers and murderers of mothers, for manslayers, for fornicators, for sodomites, for kidnappers, for liars, for perjurers, and if there is any other thing that is contrary to sound doctrine, ‘

(1 Timothy 1:9-10)

 

[Let’s remember the word also says all have fallen short of the Glory of God, all are sinners, and no one does good, not one.]

 

As Christians, we simply believe Christ, and His Word, and the Word is obviously very clear.  Demanding we act in ways contrary to what we believe is to attempt to force us to deny our Lord, and deny conscience.  Is that so hard to understand?  Does our devotion make us homophobes by default?  Of course not.  Nor is it appropriate for members of the LGBT community to attack us, as we’ve seen in recent days in the wake of the passage of Proposition 8 in California. 

 

No doubt gays will come back saying: ‘You are asking us to deny our conscience telling us homosexuality is sin.’  Well, somebody is wrong, and somebody is right.  Logic alone disallows both parties claiming truth.  Perhaps the following will help explain our point of view further.

 

I’ve had gay friends as far back as 1972. (One old friend, who is long gone, once told me gay activism was entirely misguided.  He said there was no point declaring war on the larger society. [Gays comprise 3-4% of the population.]  He said it would only cause endless turmoil for no good reason.  I think he was right.  The fact he was a college professor may carry weight with some people.)

 

It pains me to think these friends are headed for judgment. What is the most loving thing I can do? Accommodate their sin as they stumble into hell, or try to dissuade them from following a destructive and unhealthy lifestyle that ultimately leads to eternal separation from God?  The answer is obvious.  If I ignore the sin of a brother and let him fall, die and go to hell, one of two things must be true, either I do not love that brother, or I do not believe sin will visit these consequences. 

 

If my brother’s house is on fire, do I stand on the sidewalk and wish him well and walk away, or do I rush in to save him?

 

It is not an act of love to silently standby and pat people on the back while they destroy themselves.

 

And it is not discrimination to speak the truth in love.

 

As to political divorced from theological considerations, we have always held to the idea of community standards of morality as defined by the majority. Several states voted against gay marriage this last go around.  Is there any respect for democracy out there?

 

Why must the LGBT community insist the majority submit to their vision of marriage?  There is a distinct tyrannical flavor to it.

 

Otherwise, it is astounding to hear so-called pastors ignore God’s word, accommodate sin which is killing people, and bow to tyrants.

 

Lord help us.

 

As always, the Lord of Love shows the way.

 

When the religious hypocrites threw the adulterous woman at Jesus’ feet, challenging him to give the order to stone her to death, the Master waited for a teachable moment, challenged the sinners to cast the first stone, loved the woman, and told her to “sin no more.” He restored her, not by accommodating her sin, not by looking the other way, but by protecting her, and leading her into the light, by His grace.  (In the process he also fingered the sin in those who set her up as the fall guy simply to try and destroy Christ and his mission.)

 

We must “go and do likewise.” We should neither condemn sinners, nor codify sin into law, all the while recognizing we too are all sinners, saved only by grace, and that, “not of ourselves, lest anyone should boast.”  Eph. 2:9

 

Pastors who prefer accommodation to salvation lean to their own understanding, lead people to destruction, and dishonor the Lord, all in the same breath.

 

‘There is a way that seems right to a man, but in the end it leads to death.’  (Proverbs 14:12-12)

 

‘Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.’ (Proverbs 3: 5,6)

 

We can no sooner force gay people to be straight that we can force Christians to be atheists.  God never forces anyone to do anything.  He simply invites people to enter his rest and enjoy a loving relationship with him.

 

Christians should be able to take a stand for our beliefs and we should be able to do so in this country without being assaulted.  Any objective examination of the record shows Christians do not assault members of the LGBT community.  

 

Hopefully members of the LGBT community will try to understand Christian beliefs, and confront this ludicrous idea Christians are somehow filled with hate and out to get them.   It’s a lie from the pit, and somehow, people know this, but they let the lie goad them to violence nonetheless.

 

We continue to pray for peaceful resolution, asking for an end to hostilities and an embrace of understanding, even an understanding unto salvation.   Most Christians I know are willing to live and let live but cannot, as a matter of conscience, sanction gay marriage.  It appears more and more LGBT people are not willing to live and let live, but are pleased to fight, and fight some more.

 

If that is the case, we are in for a long fight.

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83 Responses to Why are LGBT people so hacked with Christians?

  1. Peter Larkin says:

    I find it interesting that you would presume to know the mind of God.
    “God does not change his mind about the nature of sin…”
    Exactly how do you know what is in God’s mind?

    Also, why is it allowable to ignore certain passages of Leviticus, but not others?
    “They must be put to death.” But the other passages are STILL to be believed?

    Your logic is faulty.

  2. Allan Erickson says:

    I only know what God tells us in his word. His word says he does not change his mind about eternal, absolute truth.

    Numbers 23:19
    God is not a man, that he should lie, nor a son of man, that he should change his mind. Does he speak and then not act? Does he promise and not fulfill?

    However, God did change his mind when Abraham interceded for Lot, remember? But I think we can agree responding to a prayer and staying judgment is not the same thing as approving what you once prohibited, calling sin a blessing.

    Must object to the assertion anyone is ignoring certain passages. The passage in Leviticus concerning the death penalty was published and discussed. Did you miss that?

    Finally, if the word of God found in the Bible is the ultimate authority, any of us who disregard it place ourselves in peril. I would assert, given God’s love and provision, especially the sacrifice of Christ for us, we have to practically crowbar our way into hell.

    Galatians 6:8
    The one who sows to please his sinful nature, from that nature will reap destruction; the one who sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life.

    Have you seen these? Very compelling!

    http://www.allaboutgod.com/Jesus-christ.htm

    https://allanerickson.wordpress.com/2008/11/06/probability-prophecy-prince-of-peace/

  3. Ross Robbins says:

    I sure hope you’re not eating any shellfish. God’s not too fond of that. Also, have you sold your daughters into slavery anytime recently? If so, God says “A-Okay!” For you to attempt to play the victim card as a Christian in America is laughable at best. Are Christians regularly murdered, harassed, assaulted, or told they are not welcome in this country? I think not. Gays have long endured the unyielding hatred of Christians in America. The ignorant, misguided views of the majority should not be used to take rights away from a minority. Furthermore, your Christianity has no place in the laws of our country. I don’t force my beliefs on anyone; is it so much to ask that I be afforded the same courtesy? Apparently, yes. Absolutely despicable, the way hatred is spread in the name of God, Christ, whatever deity you pick from the grab-bag. Love is love. The Bible has been mistranslated, bent to the wills of its various translators, is NOT the word of some human-like “God”, and I would love to hear any scientific evidence to the contrary. Yes, you have your silly blind faith, like a child believing in Santa Claus, but the actions of people like you are ruining the lives of GLBT citizens.

    Christians as martyrs or victims? In America? Ha! You’ve had your evangelical fool in the White House for eight years. You’re hardly oppressed–you are the oppressor, and in 50 years the gay marriage debate will be viewed with the same disdain as the ban on interracial marriages.

    Nice try with the phony compassion,
    Ross Robbins

  4. Allan Erickson says:

    Dear Ross,

    Obama tried the shellfish and slavery bit too. I see you are schooled at repeating him. Are you familiar with the eight rules of biblical interpretation? Google it and learn. Look up those passages, apply the rules, and see what doors of illumination open in your mind.

    Christians hate gays? BS. We pray for you and hope you will repent before it’s too late. I pity you. Most gays live miserable, violent, unhappy lives. Documented. There’s a reason. It is an entirely unhealthy lifestyle, physically, morally, emotionally and spiritually. When you live life without regard to the owner’s manual, it’s like driving your car while ignoring all the warning lights on the dashboard. Eventually you burn up your motor.

    God loves you and so do we, and that’s why we tell you the truth rather than just coddle you. There is a heaven to gain and a hell to shun. Are you really willing to forfeit heaven for a few good orgasms? Bad trade seems to me.

    And, please document all these supposed hate crimes. that’s another phony argument to advance an agenda. There are already laws on the books covering everyone concerning assault etc. Why should you have preferential treatment? Ah, I know. So you can prosecute Christians for exercising free speech. Very nice.

    Fact of the matter is when you wage war, expect a reaction. You people are like the guy who murderered his parents then complained he was an orphan.

    You are tyrants, unwilling to live according to the rules of a democratic society. You force your will on people and you wonder why they resist. You don’t like election results so you throw tantrums like toddlers. You try to hitch your wagon to the civil rights movement, Blacks reject you, and you call them bigots. Silly, sad, insane.

    Homosexuality has never been sanctioned throughout human history and through all time. You guys are trying to push water uphill, and when it won’t work, you blame us! Idiotic!

    The laws of gravity like the law of God are not subject to human will and amendment. Stop whining and grow up. You can’t always get your way, but I would say, no one is stopping you from behaving in irresponsible and immoral ways, and no one is punishing you for it.

    If you are completely unteachable, who then is the narrow-minded bigot. All Christians are evil? Amazing how a mind can be bent by propaganda, and the sex drive.

    I challenge you Ross: read this entire article word for word with an open mind and look into the source material in the footnotes, and then, maybe, just maybe, you will understand why we believe the way we do, and it does not make us hateful or homophobic or anything of the sort. Do you have the guts to consider that maybe, just maybe, you are totally wrong?

    https://allanerickson.wordpress.com/2008/11/14/the-slippery-slope-of-same-sex-marriage/

  5. jesurgislac says:

    Hopefully members of the LGBT community will try to understand Christian beliefs, and confront this ludicrous idea Christians are somehow filled with hate and out to get them.

    Well, not all Christians. Just the ones who are trying to take away basic civil rights from LGBT people – including their fellow-Christians.

  6. Allan Erickson says:

    Marriage is and always has been and always should be one man, one woman, monogamy for life. No one has a civil right to call anything otherwise marriage. Fact.
    As to your other oddities and strange twists of logic having nothing to do with real exegesis, everyone, jesurgislac (probably blasphemous) invites you to consider this sterling website:

    http://daegaer.livejournal.com/90014.html

    Ever notice how secularists, Darwinists, atheists and homosexuals routinely insult and denegrate Christians and Christ, and that’s all great and groovy, no hate-filled bigotry, there oh no, and they do likewise to Muslims and Jews who also object to same sex marriage.

    However, let a person of faith stand up for his views and opinions, and we’re not even human, jsut a bunch of ignorant, haters and bigots.

    Adult conversation is dead. The law of the jungle is preeminent. And guess who’s bringing it?

  7. jesurgislac says:

    Marriage is and always has been and always should be one man, one woman,

    You mean aside from when it’s been one man and several women, or one woman and several men, or two men, or two women? Well, yes, if you ignore all the instances contradicting your assertion, your assertion is true.

    No one has a civil right to call anything otherwise marriage.

    In the US, in California, Connecticut, Massachusetts, and New York, no one has a right to deny that same-sex couples who are legally married are legally married. That’s just a fact.

    In Canada, South Africa, Spain, Belgium, the Netherlands, and Israel, also: you cannot say that a couple who are married are not, just because they’re a same-sex couple. Fact.

    As to your other oddities and strange twists of logic having nothing to do with real exegesis

    Ah, so when you said “read carefully”, you didn’t mean actually, you know, reading the text carefully. You meant “accept without question my interpretation of what a translation says”.

    Ever notice how secularists, Darwinists, atheists and homosexuals routinely insult and denegrate Christians and Christ, and that’s all great and groovy, no hate-filled bigotry, there oh no, and they do likewise to Muslims and Jews who also object to same sex marriage.

    You know, when I read the title of this post, I thought you might actually be asking an honest question and want to actually know the answer. But I see that you don’t.

  8. Ed Mack says:

    The Old Testament concept of sin isn’t a really useful concept for creating a system of laws. Fortunately as you point out we live under a new covenant– and we must not lose sight of the nature of that covenant. Jesus brought Enlightenment values into the Judaic tradition-and reconciled them with that tradition. The beauty is that these values are about fundamental equality before God, the belief that we should be equal before the law, and a rigorous separation of Church and State. Jesus said render unto Caesar what is Caesar’s, and unto God what is God’s.

    Of course Jesus’ message gets forgotten time and again: we see the Catholic church of the Middle Ages prior to its reformation by the Enlightenment thinkers — Luther for instance who, similar to Jesus, sparked off an intellectual and spiritual revolution. And again eventually the message is forgotten. It’s not just Jews of the Old Testament who stray from orthodoxy and have to be “reformed” again and again.

    Whatever we might think about God’s changing or unchanging will (and speculation on the point might not get us very far), the historical evidence suggests that human nature does repeat itself. I think that the rise of a theocratic movement in the US with its corrupt preachers is very much a repetition of the over-legalisation of earlier religious establishments: akin to the Pharisee and Sadducee development of Jesus’ time, or the Indulgence movement that Luther rebelled against–organized religion loving the trappings of temporal wealth and, especially, power too much. The interesting thing about this part of unchanging human nature is that it’s predictable and preventable: The Book of Revelations predicts that false prophets will appear again. They’ll favor form over function: the appearance of godliness over real saintliness, televangelism over community organizing? 🙂

    Remember Jesus and the Samaritans, remember Jesus and the Gentiles, Luther and those who could not speak Latin, Martin Luther King and the Blacks. These people showed courage to demand inclusion in the institutions of their day for those most excluded. I do not believe that Jesus would have likened a homosexual to the situation of someone living in a burning house. The argument you present is a straw man: should I walk away or rescue him forcibly? I think that Jesus would have looked at what he could do to give dignity to that person in a community hell-bent on stripping it. He might well have gone into that person’s house and eaten with them: and he probably wouldn’t have been turned off if there’d been a tax collector or repo man there either. But I doubt he would have turned their words against them. There’s just no record of him ever doing that.

    “Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends” John 15:13
    I believe your gay professor friend is a true friend, and I believe that he is sacrificing a good part of a life because his friends have asked him to. But I seriously question your judgment in being part of that group clamoring for him to.

  9. J says:

    No group of people should be judged based upon the behavior of their worst members. Members of the Christian community have been as disrespectful and inappropriate as members of the LGBT community mentioned at the beginning of this article. I recommend everyone view Keith Olbermann’s special comment on Prop 8.
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2008/11/10/keith-olbermanns-prop-8-s_n_142862.html

  10. Allan Erickson says:

    Olbermann!? Olbermann!? Olbermann?!! Saints preserve us! Keith, the king of Kill!

    Former Lesbian Publisher Charlene Cothran Featured in National TV Show
    PALM COAST, Fl., Nov. 14 /Christian Newswire/ — Former lesbian publisher, Charlene E. Cothran of VENUS Magazine will be featured in an episode of Pure Passion on the Direct TV network. The episode will air Sunday (Nov 16th) at 11 PM (ET) on Direct TV channel #376.

    The episode will also air on other networks around the world at various other times, but this is the initial US national airing (it will rerun approx 26 weeks later).

    Viewers may also access the episode on the web after November 16th by logging on to http://www.PurePassion.us.

    After 29 years of lesbianism and nearly 15 years of gay activism and magazine publishing Ms. Cothran experienced complete spiritual transformation through a powerful encounter with the Lord Jesus Christ. Now, an ordained International Evangelist Ms. Cothran fulfills a divine mandate to return to every country, city and beyond to proclaim liberty to those held captive by the deception of homosexuality.

    Ms. Cothran is also an international conference speaker. Founder of The EVIDENCE Ministry, Inc., Ms. Cothran offers interactive training presentations for Youth, Womens’, and Christian counseling ministry leaders. More information is available at http://www.VenusMagazine.org.

  11. Allan Erickson says:

    Sorry Ed. I don’t think you know the Risen Jesus very well. He never compromised with sin. He said he was the very fulfilmment of the law. For you to claim the OT concept of sin is not useful for creating a system of laws…well, it’s what the entire Western Civilization is based on, and so, you blithely wipe away 3,000 years of history with a phrase.

    Sin is eveident everywhere. Why do you think you lock your doors?

    Jesus always pointed people to heaven, always telling them they had to repent, always telling them the only road to heaven was by his shed blood on the Cross. Have you ever considered why he intentionally allowed himself to be crucified?

    Hebrews 12:2
    “Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. ”

    WHAT IS THE GOSPEL?
    http://www.ligonier.org/welcome_whatisthegospel.php

  12. Ed Mack says:

    Hi Allan,

    Thanks for calling me on that and asking for an explanation. I was actually inspired by the subtitle of your blog and recognizing some common ground.

    Greatest good/greatest number is a utilitarian idea that is an important part of the Enlightenment development which of course stands in contrast to Old Covenant thinking.

    Let me know if I’ve got the interpretation of that subtitle wrong.

    Peace with you on your walk with the Lord.

    Ed

  13. JDC says:

    just a few words. Wake up , There is no god .

  14. Allan Erickson says:

  15. Allan Erickson says:

    Ed:

    My belief from experience and the Scripture is God himslef provides the greatest good for the greatest number. He loves us and wants what is best for us. If we would only acknowledge him as God, and follow him, think of the peace and the blessings. But no, we insist on going our own way, and hence, sin, death, murder and war. We have no one to blame but ourselves.

    My prayer is we all find him and wlak with him and encourage others as well for in this we realize the greatest good for the greatest number.

    ae

  16. Ed Mack says:

    I understand what you are saying. The Bible lays out what we need to know and if we have ears to hear it, then we shall be in a better place to create a more perfect society.

    The subject of ‘ears to hear’ is one that Jesus himself addressed, and there is strong evidence to suggest that parts of the Bible were deliberately written with a double message. An external message that Roman authorities would “get” and another message that those who were “in the know” would understand. If you’re interested, there’s a great book by Frank Kermode “The Genesis of Secrecy” that explores these ideas.

    A necessary result of this train of thought is that the understanding of how to interpret the message is a vital part of the message itself. Lose the knowhow, the method of decoding the book, and you lose the ability to read the subtext.

    I think this is why so many people get “hacked off”, as you well put it. If I may venture, many of these people, and I am one of them, do not perceive that the leaders of some of the more strident traditions today necessarily have a coherent connection with the original values that can be used to explore the core of the Christian teachings. We have lost the understanding to interpret important parts of the Bible, or we do not use them consistently and coherently.

    One example is that Christian mystic traditions–the power of prayer and Christian meditation which possibly was the great motivator of the early Church–appear not to be in widespread teaching today, and yet Jesus surely wanted his followers to come closer to God, to know God.

    Your quoting of C.S. Lewis is very relevant here. I’ve long thought about it since being introduced to it. I love the way Jesus called himself “the Son of Man” when questioned but refused to contradict those who said he was the Son of God. Instead he taught people to pray, teaching them to say the words, “Our Father who is in Heaven and whose name is holy”. Marvelous stuff: he basically said that we are all sons (and daughters) of God, and that through stillness we might know our Creator. This would have driven the religious establishment to absolute distraction!
    – Common people! Approaching God directly! Heresy!

    I say genius! and still, clearly, no end to what we might learn in penitence and faith. Of course even after three years Jesus had to deal with his well-intentioned followers completely missing the point!

  17. Allan Erickson says:

    Im sure the religious authorities hated Jesus for encouraging people to go directly to the Father, just as the priests and the Pope hated Martin Luther for doing the same—

    Indeed, he was and is Son of Man and Son of God, and God very God.

    John 8:58

    John 10:30

    John 17:11

    John 17:21

  18. Allan Erickson says:

    Radical homosexuals plan day of ‘intolerance’

    Charlie Butts nd Marty Cooper – OneNewsNow – 11/14/2008 7:00:00 AM

    Activist homosexual leaders are planning a day of protest this Saturday over losing the traditional marriage battles in three states.

    The homosexual movement for special rights has become louder, and in some cases violent, in the aftermath of losses at the ballot box in Florida, Arizona, and California. Florida Family Association notes the increased intensity in rhetoric from the self-proclaimed “champions of tolerance” and diversity. The National Day of Protest’s logo is a clenched fighting fist and features phrases such as “Fight the H8” (Fight the Hate) and “Ready to Rumble.”

    Florida Family Association notes the irony in that the homosexual movement that formerly preached diversity and tolerance has now become increasingly disorderly and aggressive, even intolerant, of supporters of traditional marriage by vandalizing property and staging protests at and inside churches. Matt Barber of Liberty Counsel says the demonstrations ought to be taken seriously, especially this Saturday.

    “There have been threats of church burnings. There have been threats of violence, even murder against Christians,” he explains. “There has been vandalism already of a number of churches.”

    According to an alert issued by the Florida Family Association, the “radical gay leaders” have two goals in mind through the upcoming protest: one being to normalize homosexuality in all areas of American society, and the second being to “silence everyone who disagrees with them.” The notice adds that the homosexual activists are refusing to accept the final vote as an expression of the will of America’s people.

    “It really amounts to homo-fascism, and so what we’re seeing [is] they don’t want to let the democratic process play out,” Barber adds. “These people are anti-democracy, clearly.”

    Florida Family Association also believes the radical homosexual agenda is “unapologetically ‘me’ centered” and does not feature discussions about what is best for families, children, or the common good of society. Barber points out the Bible’s contrasting view. “Scripture says specifically, of people who are trapped in the homosexual lifestyle, …that they are given over to a reprobate mind,” he concludes. (See Romans 1:27-29)

  19. Malik B says:

    Yes. You can call homosexuals who are against the majority legislating away their rights anti-democratic. You could also call blacks who marched to take disciminatory laws off the books the same. We, as the majority, have NO right to deny a fellow citizen equal protection under the law no matter our personal beliefs. Marriage has significant legal advantages over civil unions. Separate is not equal.

  20. jesurgislac says:

    Im sure the religious authorities hated Jesus for encouraging people to go directly to the Father, just as the priests and the Pope hated Martin Luther for doing the same—

    And just as the homophobic Christians hate LGBT Christians for believing that God doesn’t hate them for their sexual orientation.

    It’s curious how certain homophobic Christians can be that they know the will of God, and no one else can possibly have “gone directly to the Father” but them. Religious authorities are the same in all ages, really.

  21. Allan Erickson says:

    jesurgislac:

    I have a suggestion for you. Challenge your presuppositions. I think, based on your writing which reveals your approach to things, you tend judge all things in this discussion based on your opinion homosexuality is simply another lifestyle, another genetic predisposition, an amoral state of being, simply another way to be human.

    What if you are wrong?

    I also think you operate according to another presupposition: religion is irrational, and Christians in particular tend to be discriminatory.

    How then do you account for the fact most western universities in Europe, and in the Western Hemisphere were started, funding and sustained by Christians, and how do you account for the fact that modern science traces all its origins to Christian ideas about the nature of God, nature and the university, especially the two compelling ideals that 1) there must be order we can discover because God says he is order and he invites us to discover him, and 2) there is a vast unseen realm even more real and everlasting that what we perceive with our five senses?

    Also, if Christianity is so irrational and discriminatory, how do you explain that most of the modern reform movements from Martin Luther forward were started and sustained by Christians—-labor reform, child labor, social welfare, ending slavery, global charitable outreach, food programs etc.—-and that many millions of lives have been changed miraculously by the power of the risen Christ by the testimony of those same many millions, without regard to race, color, creed, national orientation, or sexual preference?

  22. jesurgislac says:

    I think, based on your writing which reveals your approach to things, you tend judge all things in this discussion based on your opinion homosexuality is simply another lifestyle, another genetic predisposition, an amoral state of being, simply another way to be human.

    Well, yes. So it is.

    Are you going to challenge your presuppositions? You’re very anxious to have me revise the thinking and studying I’ve done over the past twenty-five years, which you dismiss my “presuppositions”, but you do not show any sign yourself of being in any way interested in considering what things might look like if you revised your presupposition that you know what God feels about lesbian/gay/bisexual sexual orientation, and the rest of us ought to treat you as a religious authority?

    Also, if Christianity is so irrational and discriminatory, how do you explain that most of the modern reform movements from Martin Luther forward were started and sustained by Christians—-labor reform, child labor, social welfare, ending slavery, global charitable outreach, food programs etc.

    Indeed – and Christian LGBT people and allies have often been found at the forefront of the modern reform movement to end discrimination against LGBT people. Archbishop Desmond Tutu, for example, has spoken out strongly against his co-religionists for their hatred and discrimination against LGBT people. Christianity is not of its nature irrational and discriminatory, but many Christians do use their religion as an irrational excuse to be discriminatory – for example, opposing racial equality (a Christian judge cited his faith that God objected to the marriage of Mildred and Richard Loving, back in Virginia in 1958: the LDS Church regarded black people as, at best, servants in Heaven until 1978. The work that many good Christians, LGBT or not, have done for LGBT people, including supporting the right of same-sex couples to marry, is part of the tradition that Christians have of being directly involved in modern reform movements. It is only some Christians, by no means all, who regard homophobia as a central tenet of Christianity and oppose equality for LGBT people.

  23. Allan Erickson says:

    Malik B:

    Please cite an example of anyone legislating away your rights. Please tell us how the dominate heterosexual culture has so grievously mistreated you all.

    Blacks do not agree your movement is akin to the civil rights movement. Vast majorities disagree with you, and in fact, they resent your intrusion.

    The simple fact is most people in this country and throughout history agree homosexuality is abnormal, immoral and that this notion of gay marriage is counter-productive. Knowing this, the gay activist movement has avoided the ballot box and sought change through the courts, using the courts to run rough shod over the majority of people, a sure recipe for escalations in the culture war.

    Another simple fact is civil unions provide all the benefits, rights and privileges you seek, and most Americans would be content to live and let live under those circumstances. The question is why you all won’t settle for that, why you contintue to press for full marriage, and why you continue to demonize people of faith as hate-filled homophobes.

    The simple answer is the only way you can overcome a vast majority is to change hearts and minds along with judicial activism over the long haul and the only way to do that is to distract people away from your perversion and have them focus on a so-called mean-spirited oppressive group holding you down, thus recruiting people who think they are only working on behalf of equal rights against the evil influences of religious bigots. Thus, you scapegoat the true agents of righteousness to usher in your agenda on the backs of the uninformed and brainwashed masses.

    And why?

    Full marriage rights also gives you entre’ into the halls of education to teach small kids that homosexuality is wonderful. How else will you “procreate”?

    Hence, the gay rights/gay marriage movement is not a simple plea for justice denied, since all the benefits you presume to seek are supplied via civil unions. No, the movement is much bigger and much more subversive, because in the end, the ultimate vision is the destruction of the nuclear family and the Judeo-Christian tradition in preference for patrimony, secularism and deeper levels of multi-faceted sexual behavior hitherto unacceptable, and demonstrably destructive to the greater good.

  24. jesurgislac says:

    Please cite an example of anyone legislating away your rights.

    Recently? What are we talking about, if not the various anti-gay propositions for state constitutions that just passed in multiple states in the recent election? All of which involved a majority legislating away rights for a minority.

    Blacks do not agree your movement is akin to the civil rights movement.

    It’s so nice for black people when white people tell them what they think, isn’t it? Some black people don’t agree that legislating away the rights of a minority by sexual orientation is the same as legislating away the rights of a minority by ethnic identity. Some – like Mildred Loving and like Coretta Scott King – do in fact see an exact parallel, and support LGBT equality.

    Another simple fact is civil unions provide all the benefits, rights and privileges you seek, and most Americans would be content to live and let live under those circumstances.

    Really? I don’t see any movement in the US to abolish marriage and replace it with state-by-state civil unions with different rights in each state, not federally recognized. Cite your evidence…

    Full marriage rights also gives you entre’ into the halls of education to teach small kids that homosexuality is wonderful. How else will you “procreate”?

    Now it comes out: the perennial lie. Really, this is not worth rebutting, except that it’s so terribly hurtful to the parents of LGBT people to tell them that their children were abused and/or violated. Kindly apologize for this – it’s cruel and unkind to keep spreading this rumor: it’s horrific to make parents even think their children might have been abused, when you have nothing for this except a hurtful Christian myth that people only become gay due to “interference”.

  25. Allan Erickson says:

    I once believed homosexuality was simply another way to be human. I changed my point of view. I did challenge the presuppositions, and have done so frequently, even as a Christian, but the bottom line for a Christian is Christ, and his Word. He rules and reigns and judges all things, according to his Word. As a mere human being, it would be presumptuous of me to challenge the king of the universe, even being so arrogant (and unwise) as to contradict him.

    Prohibiting gay marriage for legitimate reasons is not legislating a right once held since the “right” was never possessed in the first place.

    You completely misunderstood the paragraph concerning education. There was no inference there that homosexuals are by nature child abusers. However, can you deny there has been and continues to be a huge effort to convince everyone homosexuality is simply a state of being, there is nothing morally compelling about the position or practice thereof, and the school house is one of the best place to forward the agenda in this regard. Also, that convincing young people is a way of recruiting.

    Christians evangelize. So do gays. That’s the point.

    Nor did I assert people become gay by ‘interference.’ We don’t know why people become gay. Nobody knows that. There are theories. There are also growing numbers of people who are coming out of the lifestyle to testify that they were recruited, encouraged or otherwise duped into believing they were gay, only to suffer a lifestyle incompatible with who they really were. And there are certain acknowledgments that there may be genetic predispositions. But none of that really matters in the end, including the argument that gay men become gay because of the old model of an abusive mother and an absent father. What matters is the issue of truth, moral integrity, and social organization.

    I think ultimately most people…gay or straight….wants what is best but we all struggle with selfishness and given our fallen nature, we tend to conflict. I think most Christians would just a soon let by gones be by gones, but we feel under siege all the time now, being asked to codify that which we find abhorent.

    It’s a real lose lose situation, and I’m afraid, given the intractable nature of the situation, we are in for a long period of escalating conflict, and regrettable violence, as we are seeing even this very day…

  26. jesurgislac says:

    I did challenge the presuppositions, and have done so frequently, even as a Christian, but the bottom line for a Christian is Christ, and his Word. He rules and reigns and judges all things, according to his Word. As a mere human being, it would be presumptuous of me to challenge the king of the universe, even being so arrogant (and unwise) as to contradict him.

    And yet, you presume to challenge Christ and His word, with quotes from the epistles of Paul and from Jewish purity laws. Why do you do that? If you really think that it’s presumptuous to challenge Christ’s Word, why do you go so directly and flagrantly against what Christ said, even if you feel you are supported by quotes from Paul’s letters to first-century churches and the Jewish purity laws?

    Prohibiting gay marriage for legitimate reasons is not legislating a right once held since the “right” was never possessed in the first place.

    Lying about facts easily in evidence, and which we both know you know about, doesn’t help your argument.

    I think most Christians would just a soon let by gones be by gones, but we feel under siege all the time now, being asked to codify that which we find abhorent.

    Yes. Christians who oppose the discrimination enforced by the state, who want same-sex couples to be able to marry equally, have just been asked to codify something they find abhorrent: discrimination. You show no sympathy or respect for those Christians, yet you whine about the lack of sympathy and respect shown to your interpretation of Christianity. To quote that first-century Jewish philosopher you show no interest in, “How can you say to your brother, ‘Brother, let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when you don’t see the beam in your own eye? You hypocrite! First remove the beam from your own eye, and then you’ll see clearly enough to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.””

  27. kittrina says:

    You say you are insulted by the gay community stereotyping against Christians as homophobic, hate-filled people and you have a right to be. But you are doing the same exact thing by stereotyping the entire gay community as violent, intolerant, anti-religious people. That’s just a small portion that the rest of us condemn. Those letters filled with white powder sent to two Mormon churches show no evidence as having anything to do with Prop 8 (although I don’t deny that’s probably why they were sent). Moreover, the ‘contemporary gay leaders’ you say are hate-filled called these acts ‘deplorable’ and spoke out against them.

    One of my best friends is Christian and regularly attends services and the majority of my acquaintances, co-workers, and family are Christian. I have nothing against Christian people who respect me. It’s the Christian people that don’t respect me that I have problems with but I don’t call the two the same and neither does the majority of the gay community. Those acts you speak of in the beginning of this post are horrible and I agree, those people that committed them are intolerant and wrong, but I am in no way responsible for them.

    “Why are you so intolerant of our point of view?”
    We are not. Can I ask you why you think “God hates fags”? Well I don’ think you do. I think Fred Phelps and his whole demented following thinks “God hates fags” but you are not part of that.

    Those passages you quote from the Bible are very familiar to me. They have been shouted at me by ignorant people, have been emailed to me, were slipped inside my locker in high school with threatening, hateful messages. I have had Christians site the Bible to tell me I was a horrible person, that I was the type of person they hated. A gay friend of mine was nearly attacked by a group of horrible, Christian people and would have been assaulted had his friends not come to his rescue. You saying that Christians have not harmed gays and that all Christians are open to rational discussion on the issue is untrue and naive. Just like you see the extremists in the gay population, we see the extremists in the Christian population. The problem is Christians are the majority of this country and of this world. You have a lot of extremists.
    And citing the Bible, citing religious views to justify legislation against me is not appropriate. You can cite it to try and convince me to repent, to speak out against gay marriage, to tell me I am incorrect, but it has no place in the government. Do you like the idea of Massachusetts churches being forced to perform same-sex marriages? No. And that can’t happen simply because of the separation of church and state. You have a right to religion free from government, just as I have the opposite. I will fight for your rights in that respect. I will be voting “No” on any proposition that is backed by atheists trying to take away religious rights, even though I am atheist myself. It would not be right.

    “He said there was no point declaring war on the larger society. [Gays comprise 3-4% of the population.]”
    I have not seen a figure that low from any site other than anti-gay ones. The usual accepted value by outside sources is 7% as gay sites give 10%. Should we deny Muslims the right to worship because they are minority? This logic says so. And he’s right, it’s an uphill battle when you’re the minority but uphill it is going. Not long ago it was seen improper for a gay couple to hold hands in public. We were expected to deny ourselves and stay in the closet for the sake of the children. We have gained ground and we will continue to.

    “As to political divorced from theological considerations, we have always held to the idea of community standards of morality as defined by the majority. Several states voted against gay marriage this last go around. Is there any respect for democracy out there? Why must the LGBT community insist the majority submit to their vision of marriage? There is a distinct tyrannical flavor to it.”
    Are you against bans on interracial marriage or segregation? How about slavery? I think you are a decent person so I hope you are. Neither of these were chosen by a simple majority. As the Mayor of San Francisco said, it takes a 2/3 majority to pass a budget in California. It takes a 2/3 majority to amend the Federal Constitution. These people are amending their Constitution (it won’t be a law. it will be an amendment.) based on a 4% difference. That is barely a majority.
    Furthermore, when bans on interracial marriage were declared unconstitutional by the supreme court only 40 years ago, the majority of the population was against them. Had it been left up to the people’s popular vote, it would have been banned once again. This is the same exact thing, only on a state level. Our future President’s parents couldn’t have married in many of our states before this happened. The courts also declared segregation unconstitutional when about half the US had segregation in place. Was the majority right? No. And it is not right now.

    “Any objective examination of the record shows Christians do not assault members of the LGBT community. ”
    Completely untrue. Every 3 days a gay person is murdered for being gay in the United States and the majority of the United States is Christian. (If you wish to cite me on this figure, I can find it for you but I’m not going to sift through the internet for a study I found months ago if you believe what I say)

    “Hopefully members of the LGBT community will try to understand Christian beliefs, and confront this ludicrous idea Christians are somehow filled with hate and out to get them. It’s a lie from the pit, and somehow, people know this, but they let the lie goad them to violence nonetheless. ”
    I do try to understand Christian beliefs. I have had respectful debates with respectful Christians on the subject and both of us learned much. I would welcome one from you if you would invite me to do so. Saying all Christians are hateful and violent is incorrect. Saying some are is. Being Christian does not mean you are a good person. It means you believe in Christianity, not that you follow its core principles.

    “It appears more and more LGBT people are not willing to live and let live, but are pleased to fight, and fight some more.”
    No one is telling you to leave your religion. No one is telling your religion what to do. I don’t think I have the right to do that, no one does. You have a right to your beliefs and so do I. I believe you are wrong but I don’t believe you are filled with hate, nor do I think you are a bad person. And I am pleased to fight and fight I will. My hero is a man named Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., a religious leader himself. I will fight til I can fight no longer but, like him, I will never resort to violence to do so. I can protest. It is my right. I can say all I want, just like anti-gay protesters do all the time.

    To follow another comment on here, playing the victim card as a Christian in America is absurd. The constitution protects you from discrimination as well it should. It does not protect me.

  28. Allan Erickson says:

    Kittrina:

    Thanks for taking the time to write so extensively.

    My supposition is the Constitution protects all of us equally, and I think that is borne out by the evidence. There is no need for special hate crimes legislation. Asking the majority and/or people of faith to institutionalize gay marriage is to ask us to approve of something contrary to conscience, tradition, belief and nature. It is and remains an unreasonable request and if not granted by the courts or by the ballot box, many, many in your community insist they will force the issue by force which is entirely against our traditions.

    Is suspect Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., a Christian minister, would be opposed to gay marriage based on the biblical prohibitions against homosexual practice, male or female. People try very hard to discount what the Bible says but it’s very plain, just as it makes it very clear sex outside heterosexual marriage is sin, and that is the very definition of fornication. We may argue with the Catholic tradition about birth control, but no one has serious challenged what the Bible has to say about sexual behavior, and indeed other forms of behavior, if made habit and lifestyle, combine to separate a person from God, and that is the ultimate tragedy.

    Another important dimension to keep in mind I think is that Christ himself says that all Scripture, the entire OT and the entire NT, is God-breathed, and must be rightly interpreted. The first lesson some seminaries teach is do not make the mistake of combining disconnected verses to conjure some personal truth (little ‘t’). For example, combining the passages: “Judas hung himself” and “Go and do thou likewise” leave on with few options. (stab a humor)

    I agree with you, there are some idiots out there calling themselves Christians while marching around with placards stating ‘God hates fags.’ They are as misguided in my view as the guy who assaulted granny in Palm Springs the other day.

    As you know the majority of people reject the argument this is something we should liken to the civil rights movement. (Indeed, it is instructive to read in Numbers how God disciplined Miriam for criticizing Moses for marrying a Black women.)

    For more on that topic:

    https://allanerickson.wordpress.com/2008/11/14/the-slippery-slope-of-same-sex-marriage/

    I join you in condemning all violence directed at anyone for any reason and would work to encourage people and educate them against violence against members of the LGBT community. I think you might agree that hate crimes legislation is duplicative and in some sense a pretense for stiffling free speech in and around this issue, and that codifying gay marriage won’t address violent prejudice in any healthy way.

    It is useful to remember that violence encourages violence, so if Dr. MLK Jr. is the standard, gay activists should follow his pacifist lead and work with all of us to quell the violence, and the violent verbage as well.

    I have to say I stopped being insulted a long time ago, and try to maintain that level of trying to keep all this non-personal, but the very nature of the subject makes it very hard to avoid the personal. Over many years I’ve experienced personal attacks for being a Christian, for being a conservative, for being white and middle class, for being male, for having five kids, for having a son in the Marine Corps, for speaking out about homosexual marriage and abortion and stem cell research and assisted suicide.

    I would never call for hate crimes legislation to silence by critics. Shoot, I had some people threaten my life for supporting McCain, saying if Obama lost, they were coming for me. Of course, most of that stuff is idle talk, but in this increasingly heated environment, one wonders sometimes.

    I think we can do two things to make things better right away:

    Chill

    And try to understand the other person’s point of view a bit better.

    Thanks again for writing.

  29. jesurgislac says:

    Is suspect Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., a Christian minister, would be opposed to gay marriage based on the biblical prohibitions against homosexual practice, male or female.

    You may “suspect” it, but Coretta Scott King, his widow, said publicly in 2004 that anti-marriage amendments preventing same-sex couples from marrying were “gay bashing” and that all families deserved to be supported.

    I’ve never yet met a homophobic Christian who was in any way prepared to consider that Coretta Scott King probably had more insight into what her late husband, an outspoken radical whose Christian principles informed his fight for equality, would have thought about same-sex marriage that the religious right, whose “Christian principles” led them to oppose Martin Luther King and his fight for equality when King was alive.

  30. Malik B says:

    Well, the black codes (passed after Reconstruction) are a good example of legislation designed to remove the rights of people like me.

    A good example of the dominate heterosexual population doing wrong to people that share my skin tone would be the same biblical basis for a ban on marriages even between two black people. I can safely assume that heterosexuals made up the majority of the voting population then, too. Just to point out that being heterosexual provides us no protection from being wrong.

    And my being straight and black did not keep me from feeling pain and shame that my state was the first to amend our constitution to restrict rights.

    I use Civil Rights intentionally. The key phrase for the movement is “equal protection under the law.” Do your research on protections denied civil unions. Some are clearance to visit in hospitals, inheritance of property in the case of death in certain situations, and DNR decisions. Despite what you may think of homosexual people, they are people that must live like you and me.

    Non-violence does NOT mean silence. In fact, just the opposite.

  31. The U.S. government crossed a VERY serious line with PROP 8.

    This “proposition” threatened children’s sense of safety and belongingness in California. Children’s safety.

    Regardless of THIS particular fight, there are way too many fights on way too many fronts for us to conquer piecemeal. The Time is Now – DRAW A NEW LINE in the sand and demand from President Obama and our representatives FULL EQUALITY.

    Equality Is Simple When You Simply Include Everybody.

    What? Not detailed enough for the lawyers?

    OK, we can list repealing DOMA, repealing DADT, include transgender in the ENDA Bill, allow adoption of abandoned children, equality in immigration issues, recognize our hate crimes as such, equal family/children rights……….whew! See what I mean?

    We are EQUAL SOULS in HUMAN BODIES. Could we please STOP discriminating due to the genitalia attached? Plumbing will determine each civil right?! Any separation from the pack is ultimately due to gender (and/or gender roles & stereotyping), and that is SEXISM. I cannot marry Bob because I am the “wrong” gender; if I were a woman I could marry Bob. SEXISM.

    And I cannot stress ENOUGH how my own suffering from Marriage Inequality is NOT the reason for wanting or needing equality. I am not something to focus on. But my story, and the stories of countless other Americans desperately need to be addressed in this civil rights struggle. Marriage laws were put in place many years ago in order to PROTECT individuals and their FAMILIES; if they were NOT necessary they would not exist (for heterosexuals). When these laws are NOT in place for ALL OF US, horrible, horrible suffering occurs. My WEBSITE has many examples.

    So Americans want to continue denying us what they have already deemed as essential. And many people want us to WAIT…2….5……10…….20……..30 YEARS, depending on the “civil right”, for what WAS and IS our birthright.

    I personally have a HUGE problem with that. I cannot wait. I will not wait.

    Will you join me on Wednesday, April 15th, 2009, and help me inform the government that WE are eager to be included in the federal tax base as soon as THEY include us in society’s laws? My 5-year-old students could understand this concept: EQUAL = EQUAL

    As Americans can’t we agree that there are MANY other important issues to address (like the Economy, Education, Health Care, Poverty & Homelessness, Iraq/Afghanistan…all of these are related), and solving THOSE problems is more urgent than having “Equality Issues” TIE UP THE COURTS for another 30+ years? We will NOT go away.

    You keep procreating; we keep popping out. Sorry.

    Our representatives have spent years inventing 4-letter words (DOMA, DADT) to restrict us, deny us, demoralize us, and harm our beloved families and children. Enough is enough.

    NO MORE. NO MORE.

    =========================
    The National Equality Tax Protest
    – Wednesday, April 15th, 2009 –
    =========================

  32. Allan Erickson says:

    HUH? Democracy dude.

  33. Allan Erickson says:

    “Battle also says King’s theology would have prevented him from endorsing gay marriage. He says King believed in a Bible that stated God’s opposition to homosexuality, and that defined marriage as between one man and one woman. A recent Pew Research poll found that 67 percent of black Protestants oppose gay marriage on religious grounds.”

    http://news.minnesota.publicradio.org/features/2005/01/17_williamsb_wwmlkd/

    ”Skin color is a benign, non-behavioral characteristic . . . sexual orientation is perhaps the most profound of human behavioral characteristics. Comparison of the two—racial and sexual discrimination—is a convenient but invalid argument.“

    Gen. Colin Powell, former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff

    http://www.cwfa.org/articledisplay.asp?id=1035&department=CWA&categoryid=family

    President Elect Obama says he is not in favor of gay marriage. If you believe him, why aren’t you hacked at him? If you don’t believe him, why aren’t you mad at him for lying to you?

  34. jesurgislac says:

    Battle also says King’s theology would have prevented him from endorsing gay marriage. He says King believed in a Bible that stated God’s opposition to homosexuality, and that defined marriage as between one man and one woman.

    Gee, how easy it is to put your own prejudices in the mouth of a dead man. You really don’t have any respect for Martin Luther King, do you? To you, he’s just a meat puppet you can make talk with whatever suits you.

    We don’t know what Martin Luther King would have thought about same-sex marriage, any more than we know what Jesus thought about gay people, because neither one of them uttered an opinion on this. We do know that Martin Luther King was a passionate believer in equality and that his widow, in 2004, expressed strong condemnation of bans on same-sex marriage: just as we know that Jesus thought it was more important to treat people decently than to police their sex lives.

    President Elect Obama says he is not in favor of gay marriage. If you believe him, why aren’t you hacked at him?

    I don’t agree with Barack Obama over his opinion of gay marriage. But I note that Obama has said he supports repealing DOMA, which would be an important step forward for LGBT equality if he does it, and that Obama – unlike many Christians who think God is homophobic – does seem to have a clear understanding that he hasn’t been voted into political power in order to impose his religious beliefs on other people who don’t share them.

    I’m not hacked at people for their religious beliefs. (I may be saddened by people who think hate is a Christian value, but I accept their right to believe that God is homophobic.) I am hacked at people who try to force their religious beliefs on others, as the LDS Church just did in California.

  35. Allan Erickson says:

    Why can’t you just read additional information and consider it as part of the overall conversation without going ballistic?

    As to Christ’s opinion, I repeat, he claimed to be God, said more than once that the entire NT and OT were and are the true Words of God, and so, yes, he stated an opinion more than once, even if you only center of what is acceptable/sanctioned sexual behavior being heterosexual monogamy, and all else is sin. There are several online bible studies you can use to examine the truth of all this.

    By the way, you guys always play the homophobia card. I don’t know anyone afraid of gay men or lesbians or transgender people or bisexuals or cross-dressers. We are concerned about the damage done to society and our kids if perversion is called just another slice of normal and the flood gates are opened to teaching all kinds of anathema lifestyles in the public schools.

    We aren’t phobic about homosexuals. We look at history, recent studies, consider what we understand God to say, and we thereby formulate a legitimate point of view about what constitutes the greatest good for the greatest number.

    That’s not homophobic, that’s common sense.

    The majority has consistently voted against gay marriage in many states over many years, and not all those voters were Christians, nor were they operating out of hate.

    It is convenient for you to characterize the opposition as hate-filled homophobic bigots and religious zealots in your quest to crush the opposition with police state tactics and ridicule, IMPOSING YOUR MORALITY ON EVERYONE, but the truth is your opponents are neither hate-filled nor bigotted zealots, but rather, mainstream, moral, loving traditionalists trying to raise their kids and pay their bills without being harrassed by a bunch of feral adolescents who whine endlessly about not getting their way.

    The vast majority of Blacks reject your claim to dinship with the civil rights movement. Why not Google some of their editorials on the subject. There are many Black authors at Townhall who would be glad to share their points of view, if you have the guts to consider you might be completely in error, and further, the courage to change course.

  36. jesurgislac says:

    As to Christ’s opinion, I repeat, he claimed to be God, said more than once that the entire NT and OT were and are the true Words of God, and so, yes, he stated an opinion more than once, even if you only center of what is acceptable/sanctioned sexual behavior being heterosexual monogamy, and all else is sin.

    So you feel entitled to ignore everything Jesus said about not policing other people’s behavior, not policing other people’s relationship with God, not being a hypocrite or a Pharisee? Just asking.

    We are concerned about the damage done to society and our kids if perversion is called just another slice of normal and the flood gates are opened to teaching all kinds of anathema lifestyles in the public schools.

    Sounds like you are really very, very afraid of gay men and lesbians and transgender people and bisexuals and cross-dressers, if you’re so scared that just treating us equally will do all of that damage. But homophobia is just the specific word for anti-gay bigotry. That people who are anti-gay bigots frequently express fears as you have just done may be the ultimate cause of their bigotry, but I don’t really believe in looking for “ultimate causes”: it’s enough to insist on politeness, respect, and legal equality.

    We look at history, recent studies, consider what we understand God to say, and we thereby formulate a legitimate point of view about what constitutes the greatest good for the greatest number.

    That becomes homophobic, when your argument that “the greatest good for the greatest number” includes denying equal rights for some based on sexual orientation. It also becomes anti-religious freedom, when you try to impose your view of “what we understand God to say” on people who do not share your views.

    The majority has consistently voted against gay marriage in many states over many years, and not all those voters were Christians, nor were they operating out of hate.

    No, frequently they were simply lied to by anti-gay bigots who told them that voting to ban same-sex marriage was somehow “protecting traditional marriage” – a nonsense, of course. We saw in California’s “Yes on 8” campaign many examples of the anti-marriage movement lying about what the ban on same-sex marriage they wanted would mean – including claims that voting on marriage would somehow change the Californian education system.

    IMPOSING YOUR MORALITY ON EVERYONE

    “The freedom to marry has long been recognized as one of the vital personal rights essential to the orderly pursuit of happiness by free men.” That is a morality that the Supreme Court of the US imposed on everyone in the US in June 1967. Do you seriously object to it? The belief that the inalienable rights include “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness” has been a morality imposed on everyone in the US since 1776: do you seriously object to it?

    You are trying to impose your morality on everyone, and it is not a morality – like the belief in “the orderly pursuit of happiness” that is about establishing freedom and equal rights for everyone: your morality involves removing basic civil liberties from some based on your interpretation of what God wants.

    but the truth is your opponents are neither hate-filled nor bigotted zealots, but rather, mainstream, moral, loving traditionalists trying to raise their kids and pay their bills without being harrassed by a bunch of feral adolescents who whine endlessly about not getting their way.

    But the truth is, that the people who want to get married are not “feral adolescents” – they are mainstream, moral, loving traditionalists trying to raise their kids and pay their bills without being harassed by a bunch of religious zealots who whine endlessly even when they get their own way.

    if you have the guts to consider you might be completely in error, and further, the courage to change course.

    Coming from you, I think that exordium is more than a little ironic.

  37. Paul says:

    ====
    Safe video – relates to the Bible.

  38. Allan Erickson says:

    Paul,

    Cute but irrelevant, illogical and silly. What is sad is the voters of California had to vote twice to define marriage as it has always been defined when the court intervened and tried to legislate social engineering from the bench against the will of the people.

    People do not hate gays.

    People are not afraid of gays.

    People are simply saying they do not agree that the definition of marriage should be expanded to include homosexuals.

    There are many reasons for opposing gay marriage, none of it having to do with hate or fear or religious zealotry.

    http://www.frc.org/get.cfm?i=bc04c02

    http://www.weeklystandard.com/Content/Public/Articles/000/000/002/938xpsxy.asp

    I have a question. Why are civil unions not good enough, and please don’t try to buy me off with the usual explanation about second class citizenship status and the rest since civil unions provide all the legal benefits of marriage while preserving the traditional definition of marriage as embraced by the majority. It would seem to most of us a good resolution to the conflict.

  39. jesurgislac says:

    Why are civil unions not good enough, and please don’t try to buy me off with the usual explanation about second class citizenship status and the rest since civil unions provide all the legal benefits of marriage while preserving the traditional definition of marriage as embraced by the majority.

    Well, assuming this is a serious question:

    1, because civil unions in the US do not provide the all the legal benefits of marriage. That’s just a fact. In order for civil unions to provide *all* the legal benefits of marriage, special federal legislation would have to be passed mandating such recognition. and of course the multiple states that have passed laws/amendments banning any legal recognition of same-sex partnerships, including civil unions, would have amend/overturn their state legislation. Whereas, for a married couple, as soon as Obama repeals DOMA, they *do* have the right to full legal equality wherever they are in the US, and it is much easier for them to get legal equality *outside* the US, too.

    2. (the answer you didn’t want) Because “separate but equal” has a bad legal history in the US of being in practice “separate but unequal”. Which, at the moment, is very much the case for couples in a civil union.

    3. Creating a separate legal arrangement, absolutely identical to marriage in all respects, and mandating full legal equality across all the states of the US, which is what would be *required* for civil unions, would be extraordinarily complicated. It’s complicated in any country’s legislation – the British Civil Partnership Act is the size of a small town’s phone book – but for the US there would be several additional layers of complication, including – just basically – the fact that mandating a top down change from federal government, which is the only way this could work, has no legal tradition in the US for marriage – properly speaking, the states need to come to their own individual arrangements with regard to recognizing same-sex couples, but of course recognize as valid all marriages and civil unions made in other states.

    4. If you feel civil unions would be “good enough”, why are you not arguing that all couples in the US should have civil unions? If you are not arguing from a presumption of inferiority, then “good enough” for gays is also “good enough” for straights. If you *are* arguing that same-sex couples are inferior, why should anyone trust that you *do* support “separate but equal” and will give your full and enthusiastic support to a campaign for full legal equality?

    5. Finally, marriage has been established in the US legally as a civil right essential to the “orderly pursuit of happiness” since a certain Supreme Court decision in June 1967. There’s no valid secular reason to deny people a civil right based on their sexual orientation, and to deny people a civil right based on the religious beliefs of others, is a clear attack on the principle of freedom of religion established in the US Constitution since July 1776.

  40. jesurgislac says:

    Real Live Preacher, from2003:

    And you come to me with two little scraps of scripture to justify your persecution of God’s children?

    Sit down Christian. Sit down and be you silent.

    How long has it been since you forgot that we were called to walk the earth as pilgrims? Do you not remember when HE told us to give our coats to those in need and sell our possessions to help the poor? Did you forget how the first church had all things in common so that none would lack.

    Did you forget the day He told us that whatever we did for the oppressed we did for Him, and whatever we withheld from them was kept from Him as well?

    Sit down Christian. You have not earned the right to speak to this generation. The right to speak is earned with love.

    Take back your bible. Take it back and start reading it. Fall in love again with Jesus. Sell what you must and walk the earth. Let your love be astonishing and people may one day listen to your words.

  41. Allan Erickson says:

    NOTICE the thought police on the march, insisting people of faith keep quiet, twisting the words of Christ to suit the ambitions of the flesh, having a form of godliness but denying the power thereof. We are not oppressing anyone by speaking the Truth. Indeed, those who call sin a lifestyle, contradict the truth of the Word, misrepresent Christ and do all in the name of selfishness usher in a new tyranny rooted in self interest to the exclusion of all other considerations, forcing an agenda with violence and propaganda, the very essence of historical despotism.

    You declared this war. Stop whinning about its prosecution.

  42. jesurgislac says:

    NOTICE the thought police on the march, insisting people of faith keep quiet

    I just cited a person of faith, Allan. A preacher. This “real live Preacher” is the one saying to her homophobic co-religionists “sit down and read your Bible”!

    twisting the words of Christ to suit the ambitions of the flesh

    Where have I done this?

    Indeed, those who call sin a lifestyle, contradict the truth of the Word

    While those who ignore the truth of the Word and go against it…?

    usher in a new tyranny rooted in self interest to the exclusion of all other considerations, forcing an agenda with violence and propaganda, the very essence of historical despotism

    Uh huh. This “new tyranny” is the right of religious freedom and the freedom to marry. Your “rooted in self-interest” – whose interests are you serving in your demand that others give up their freedom of religion and freedom to marry? “Historical despotism” – who is attempting to use the resources of the state to impose their beliefs on others, but the supporters of Proposition 8 and other anti-gay amendments?

    You declared this war. Stop whinning about its prosecution.

    Leaving aside the question of who declared this a “war” – I don’t see any whining going on from our side. It’s not our side that’s whining that Christians are “hacked off” at us: not our side that’s whining about being singled-out in supporting Propositon 8. It’s yours.

  43. Allan Erickson says:

    PS:

    Just like all of us, you need Christ. We need Christ’s power to help us live rightly in this life. And we need his righteousness to enter the next.

    Isaiah 5:18-30

    Matthew 11:16-24

  44. Allan Erickson says:

    Finally re: civil unions versus full marriage status: Curious you don’t define what is specifically lacking in civil unions other than the separate but equal argument.

    Of course if the idea is to continue to wage war to fight for full marriage status, many of us understand the agenda is much larger, involving the complete mainstreaming of homosexuality and the teaching “as lifestyle” in public education, which has always had the effect historically of diminishing traditional heterosexual marriage and thus remains injurious to the nuclear family, the essential building block of any healthy society.

    Certainly you don’t want to wage the war state-to-state, preferring federal domination to states’ rights which many would consider unconstitutional, just as it is unconstitutional to rely on activist courts and disregard the ballot box, all of it undemocratic and autocratic.

    And, never does the homosexual community acknowledge their higher rates of “divorce” and internal violence, extraordinary health problems and shortened lifespans, or the associated impacts on children given the chaos in and around multiple partners, short-run relationships and so on.

    But even bringing up these altogether relevant and important topics is considered….
    bigotted, homophobic, hateful, and discriminatory…hence the LGBT community always argues from the standpoint all opposition is evil, all opponents are hateful and the enemy, and there is never a rational debate, only a war of words, and now a war in the physcial realm as you assault grandmothers, send suspicious substances through the mail to LDS churches, invade church services and disrupt and threaten, and then demonstrate in the streets, diverting important police services to maintain order while violent crime runs amok and we continue to be vulnerable to terror attack.

    All this insanity only turns the general public against you. It is boorish in the least, and criminal at worst.

    You all get the bad citizenship medal, and some of you should be arrested for your crimes, but the police have to sit on their hands because cities and counties are terrified of being sued, and everyone is so enslaved to political correctness, even your crimes pass without comment, as political leaders dare not speak out or they too become targets of your rage.

  45. jesurgislac says:

    Curious you don’t define what is specifically lacking in civil unions other than the separate but equal argument.

    Curious you don’t pay attention: I did. However, in summary;

    No mandated inter-state recognition of civil unions – essential, when so many states now have laws / constitutional amendments declaring they wont’ accept any legal recognition of same-sex partnerships. Even after DOMA is overturned, a couple who move to a state that does not recognise civil unions may find themselves without proper legal protection: they will need marriage.

    No federal recognition of civil unions – whereas same-sex marriages become equal as soon as DOMA is repealed (or overturned).

    No international recognition of civil unions – whereas same-sex marriages are readily transferrable.

    Add to the fact that the opposition shows no sign of being in the least bit enthusiastic about supporting full legal equality for same-sex couples without the name of marriage, and there’s a situation where you simply cannot expect the LGBT communities and allies across the US to believe that a promise of “separate but equal” will be kept.

    Of course if the idea is to continue to wage war to fight for full marriage status, many of us understand the agenda is much larger, involving the complete mainstreaming of homosexuality and the teaching “as lifestyle” in public education, which has always had the effect historically of diminishing traditional heterosexual marriage and thus remains injurious to the nuclear family, the essential building block of any healthy society.

    Certainly equal marriage is just one milestone. It is necessary also to protect and support kids in school – the objections that homophobes have to anti-bullying education and comprehensive sex education, are rooted in their wanting LGBT kids to grow up bullied, ignorant, self-hating, believing that all that lies ahead of them is a life of misery. We want all children to be taught that they can be happy, successful, and create families if they want to, regardless of their sexual orientation. This is what your side calls e teaching “as lifestyle” – and which does, yes, diminish the likelihood that lesbian and gay people will enter a “traditional heterosexual marriage”. For anyone with a concern for family life, this can only be a good thing – it is desperately injurious to families to encourage people to make card marriages.

    And, never does the homosexual community acknowledge their higher rates of “divorce” and internal violence, extraordinary health problems and shortened lifespans, or the associated impacts on children given the chaos in and around multiple partners, short-run relationships and so on.

    This makes as much sense to me as arguing that black people shouldn’t have the right to marry or the same civil rights as white people, and then citing as a “reason” a set of statistics about high levels of violence, poverty, health problems, etc. Is that your belief? Because yes, that argument does strike me as bigoted, hateful, and discriminatory – racist when applied to black people, homophobic when applied to LGBT people.

    hence the LGBT community always argues from the standpoint all opposition is evil, all opponents are hateful and the enemy

    Well, given that the opposition is making bigoted, hateful, and discriminatory arguments in an evil cause, yes: you do come across as hateful and the enemy.

    Just like all of us, you need Christ. We need Christ’s power to help us live rightly in this life. And we need his righteousness to enter the next.

    Then why these consistent assertions that you don’t need Christ: that you have the necessary righteousness to police other people’s relatiionship with God?

  46. Allan Erickson says:

    So I guess the bottom line is:

    > the hell with what Christ has to say,
    > the hell with Christians,
    > the hell with Biblical morality, and the entire Judeo-Christian tradition which gave rise to this wonderful democratic republic,
    > to hell with 5,000 years of human tradition,
    > to hell with the laws of nature,
    > to hell with contemporary studies demonstrating “the lifestyle” is unhealthy and destructive, because . . .

    Sodomy and Cunnilingus practiced by homosexuals should be exalted above all else and be given equal marriage status because 4% of the population insists it’s a civil right even though 70% of Blacks disagree.

    And that’s modern rationalism for you folks! That’s the defnintion of ‘justice’ in the New Democracy?!

    World gone mad….

  47. jesurgislac says:

    Allan: So I guess the bottom line is:
    > the hell with what Christ has to say

    Since when? I like what Jesus Christ had to say. I wrote a post on my blog on What I like about Christianity, and another here You cannot invite someone halfway in.

    “Judge not, and you shall not be judged. Condemn not, and you shall not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven. Give, and it will be given to you: good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over will be put into your bosom. For with the same measure that you use, it will be measured back to you.” Luke 6, 37-38

    It seems to me that you are the one who has a problem with what Christ had to say.

    the hell with Christians

    Since when? I have many, many Christian friends.

    the hell with Biblical morality

    Well, depends where in the Bible you take your morality from… I’m all in favor of taking it direct from the gospels: but anti-gay advocates seem to prefer taking it from Leviticus and Paul’s letters. The Bible is a very, very big book. written over an enormous range of time, with a whole range of “Biblical moralities”.

    and the entire Judeo-Christian tradition which gave rise to this wonderful democratic republic

    “Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness” – and guaranteed freedom of religion. You are the one objecting to these strong traditions of the democratic republic you claim is “wonderful”.

    to hell with 5,000 years of human tradition

    Which includes so many same-sex relationships and so much love. You are the one saying “to hell” with that: we’re not.

    to hell with the laws of nature

    The laws of nature are that normal human sexual orientation ranges from heterosexual to homosexual – like normal sexual orientation in any mammal. You are the one saying “to hell” with this.

    to hell with contemporary studies demonstrating “the lifestyle” is unhealthy and destructive, because . . .

    …these “contemporary studies” are bigoted, hateful, and discriminatory. As discussed above.

    Sodomy and Cunnilingus practiced by homosexuals should be exalted above all else and be given equal marriage status

    Tut tut. It’s none of your business how two people make love in private. Do not indulge in prurient speculation.

  48. Allan Erickson says:

    At least we agree on the authority of Christ. That’s a start!

    You will note Christ condemned all fornication, and fornication, by definintion is sexual behavior outside heterosexual marriage, so to say he never condemned homosexuality, or to assert he was silent on the subject is error. Furthermore, to ignore someone who is sinning unto death and say nothing is not love. It may be PC and it may be hassle-free, but it is not love. Love is not a feeling. Love does not accommodate sin. Love takes a risk at vital relationship, grounded in truth, seeking righteousness on earth, with an eye toward heaven.

    Why do you think I interact with you so much? It is an act of love you see as I believe I’m called to challenge you to consider Christ as he is the only door to heaven and the only source of peace on earth. He wants your highest good, the object and goal of love.

    I suppose we have to go full circle then to remind you about the rules of biblical interpretation, making the point once again that the entire OT and NT is validated by Christ himself:

    “Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill. ” Matthew 5:17

    This is a very useful, short article as well, referencing John 17:17: “Sanctify them by your word, your word is truth.”

    http://wordistruth.com/pdf/WordisTruth.pdf

    “Heaven and earth shall pass away: but my words shall not pass away.”
    Luke 21:33

    Acts Chapter 1 is helpful, as is the Great Commission found at the end of Matthew.

    There are other passages as well where Jesus said Paul and others would testify in writing the new testament, so much so, scholars have accepted the canon of scripture as true testimony to the will and workings of Christ. Therefore we are confident the passages in the NT concerning homosexuality are true and accurate, but not, those passages list a number of other sins as well, so let’s not make this out to be a witch hunt, as some are wont to do.

    Consequently, when you try to reinterpret OT passages prohibiting homosexual practice, also claiming Christ is dissassociated, that is error. Scripture is clear. It says what it says without equivocation. You are free to accept or reject it, but I would caution your further that the Lord takes a very dim view of efforts to deceive his sheep and/or edit or twist his word.

    Revelation 22

    This passage also reveals Christ’s attitude toward the entire NT witness as well.

    As to your reference to judge not, we are lead to understand the Lord says we cannot judge who will enter heaven as that is the sole province of the Father and the Son, yet in other passages we are called to discern and still love:

    Matt. 7:6
    “Cast not your pearls before swine.”
    “Warn them once, then twice, and after that have nothing to do with them.”

  49. jesurgislac says:

    You will note Christ condemned all fornication, and fornication, by definintion is sexual behavior outside heterosexual marriage, so to say he never condemned homosexuality, or to assert he was silent on the subject is error.

    Actually, the origins of the word derives from Latin: it’s a euphemism for prostitution. It means not “sex outside marriage”, but promiscuous sex/sex for money. Which plainly doesn’t apply to two men or two women who are married – or even to two people who, though legally barred from marriage, are faithful to each other as in marriage. To claim that in the first century Jesus was using a definition of the word which was only invented much later is false to the original text.

    Furthermore, to ignore someone who is sinning unto death and say nothing is not love.

    To deny someone civil rights based on your assertion that they are “sinning unto death” and don’t deserve them is purely hateful. Which renders the claim that homophobic Christians are doing this “in love” invalid.

    Why do you think I interact with you so much? It is an act of love you see as I believe I’m called to challenge you to consider Christ as he is the only door to heaven and the only source of peace on earth. He wants your highest good, the object and goal of love.

    Indeed. Speaking from an atheistical point of view, I’d say about the same thing. You are perverting your religion into a creed of homophobic bigotry. On some level, you must be aware that you are ignoring and distorting the message of the gospels – assuming you’re familiar with them at all. I think this is an appalling thing to do to a religion which has many claims of merit – to turn the public image of Christianity into that of hatred and discrimination. You must be aware that, even supposing your interpretation is correct and LGBT people are “sinning unto death”, as a Christian this is not your business – Jesus repeats this, again and again, throughout the gospels. It’s not your job to judge other people’s relationship with God. It’s only your task – according to the message of the gospels – to behave decently towards other people, even the people you think don’t deserve it, the Samaritans and the tax collectors and the prostitutes and the happily-married gay couples and the lesbian mothers with children. Removing civil rights from a minority group, and telling them that Christianity is a religion of hate for them: is this really how you think you’re going to be able to answer God on the day of judgement when he says “I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me”? and you think you’re going to be able to say you’re a Pharisee so you’re OK?

  50. Allan Erickson says:

    MATTHEW 5:29, 30
    Matthew 19:6

    The Bible was written in Hebrew/Chalean and Greek, not Latin. Fornication is prohibited in both the OT and NT. In the OT it is the word “zanah” – meaning adultery, whoredom, harlotry, playing the harlot, wanton voluntary ravishment, and in the figurative, idolatry.

    In the NT the word in Greek is “porneia” – again, adultery, fornication, including incest. The root porneia is closely associated of course with porneuo which references unlawful lust.

    Webster, one of the greatest lexiconographers defines ‘fornication’: “sexual intercourse between unmarried persons.”

    I’m confident your logic system would assert that once man codifies gay marriage you will no longer be fornicators, but one might say the law of God trumps the law of man, every time.

    And here is the value of detailed study using the Strong’s Concordance and other refererence resources. There is another and similar use of the word ‘fornication’ found in Jude 7. The entire book is instructive, essentially a one-page letter, but verses 5-10 are enlightening, and compelling, and fearful. Verse 7, which contains the word ‘ekporneuo,’ meaning ‘utterly unchaste,’ reads:

    “In a similiar way, Sodom and Gomorrah and the surrounding towns gave themselves up to sexual immorality and perversion. They serve as an example of those who suffer the punishment of eternal fire.”

    And we all remember what happened to Sodom and Gomorrah. (Spare your breath, as I already know how you folks try to explain away Sodom and Gomorrah, that they weren’t committed loving people but homosexual prostitutes and licentious people that God punished with fire and brimstone, and loving, married gay people are not in that category.) Wrong. Certainly God judged Sodom and Gomarrah for all the sexual behavior they refused to repent of, including sodomy, married or not. The men of the town assaulted Lot’s house trying to rape angels who appeared to Lot as men.

    Genesis 18 and 19 ( It is said Christ was one of the three visitors.)

    So, you are completely wrong about biblical theology as it relates to the prohibitions concerning sexual behavior, in particular, fornication, and homosexual practice.

    You are wrong that Jesus tells me your sin unto death is none of my business. It is very much his business, and he is always about his Father’s business, as he commands all Christians should be.

    He commands: “Compel them to come in.”—Luke 14:23 —-Come in to the family of God by repenting of sin and receiving forgiveness and salvation.

    He commands: “Make disciples of all nations…” Matthew 28:20

    And he commands us to love our neighbors. Believe it or not, the acts of telling people about sin, inviting them to repent, introducing them to the Savior and encouraging them to join the family of God, all those are acts of love, not bigotted hatred.

    There is no distortion of the gospel here. Everything I’ve presented is straight from the Word, verified by ordained, mainstream pastors, and the traditions of historic Christianity. The distortions come from willful people unwilling to submit to the authority of Christ, working over time to avoid accountability and feed their own flesh.

    And lest we forget, Christ warned us about both false teachers, and how the Enemy is clever, even using Scripture to deceive the lost.

    PS: Pharisees focused on the law to the exclusion of loving God in vital relationship, and loving their fellow human beings unconditionally. Religion had become a club and the law a bludgeon, and we must always work and pray not to become like that, agreed.

    PPS: Discriminating between good and evil is not evil in itself, and calling sin, sin, is not hateful and bigotted, in itself. It is only when we hate the sinner that we violate the law of Christ. I don’t know anyone who hates gays and I’ve walked with the Lord for 24 years, attending church throughout. I don’t know anyone who is afraid of gays. I do know men in Promise Keepers and many other ministries who have spent years in outreach ministry to homosexuals, showing them the liberty in Christ and his power to set all of us free from sin.

    Come on in: the holy water’s fine! Even fabulous!

  51. jesurgislac says:

    At least we agree on the authority of Christ. That’s a start

    Oh no. I’m an atheist. I’m just a very well-read atheist, who started out (about thirty years ago) as a Christian, and thus can actually tell you what the Jesus Christ you claim as an authority said.

    You know? You want me to believe you think Jesus Christ is an authority, you need to quit preaching that you can’t stand what he had to say! Which is what you’re doing here with every word you utter about your right to judge other people because you believe they’re leading an immoral lifestyle. You’re Simon the Pharisee (Luke Ch7 v.36-48), if you remember the story, and you’re clearly of the opinion that that the sloppy and tolerant Jesus of Chapter 7 was in the wrong.

  52. Allan Erickson says:

    The truth is you cannot conform Jesus to your presuppositions, and you recognize his unique power and authority, or once did, so you are forced to twist his words to suit your presuppositions, having prevented yourself from rejecting him outright, the only other logical option. I don’t mean to be unkind but your exegesis is pathetic.

  53. Allan Erickson says:

    Oh, and PS:

    Would you say hanging Palin in effigy was a bit judgmental?

  54. jesurgislac says:

    The truth is you cannot conform Jesus to your presuppositions

    Coming from someone who believes that Jesus conforms to all your presuppositions and prejudices, isn’t that kind of ironic? You believe Jesus was homophobic. You are unable to show any evidence of this, and you have to ignore a lot of evidence against the idea that Jesus was a sanctimonious prig who believed in policing other people’s sex lives… but you’re just sure he shared your prejudices and your desire to control what other people do. And for anyone who reads the text and notes that Jesus in the gospels drank wine, broke the laws of Leviticus, hung out with immoral people, rebuked sanctimonious prigs, and had sharp take-downs for those who thought themselves entitled to rebuke others for living an immoral lifestyle, it’s really hard to believe you actually consider Jesus to be any kind of authority, since plainly you don’t agree with what he actually had to say and you don’t like what he’s recorded as doing.

    I’m trying not to be unkind, Allan, but really: where do you get your idea that Jesus wants you to police other people’s sex lives and relationship with God?

  55. Allan Erickson says:

    “THEIR FOLLY WILL BE MADE CLEAR TO EVERYONE.” *

    You go from bad to worse jesurgislac.

    First of all, all I’ve done here is quote Scripture and present it according to the historic precepts of the faith, according to traditional interpretation.

    It has nothing to do with my presuppositions.

    The Lord and his Word lead. I follow.

    Secondly, it is absurd to assert anyone believes Jesus is homophobic.

    All you guys ever do is spew hate and launch: “homophobic, bigotted, hate-filled!” That’s it. That’s the sum total of your argument: unfounded and irrelevant name-calling. That’s it. Like little kids on the playground.

    As to making judgments and ‘policing,’ you are again completely in error.

    On the one hand, if Jesus is God, king of the universe, your creator and mine, he owns everything, and therefore He has every right to define right versus wrong, good versus evil.

    He also has every right to judge the ‘quick and the dead.’

    And one day each one of us will stand before the judgment seat of Christ to face our reward or our punishment.

    None of this has anything to do with my opinion. My opinion doesn’t amount to corn flakes.

    His Word means everything.

    Furthermore, try not to be so blatantly hypocritical.

    You guys make prejudicial judgments all the time, but you do so independent of any transcendent authority, all of it fueled by your own ‘wisdom,’ and being merely human wisdom, it is entirely insufficient.

    You claim everyone who opposes gay marriage is by definition a hate-filled homophobic bigot. That is simply ridiculous on the face of it, but you repeat it over and over, hoping someday to get enough sympathy from the uninformed and the spineless to gather support to forward your cause.

    You routinely judge certain kinds of people idiots for having a certain kind of religious belief.

    You reject out of hand anyone with a different point of view, and you viciously attack people who do not support your socio-politica agenda.

    You claim to embrace diversity and insist on exclusivity.

    You insist on tolerance and display gross intolerance.

    You bemoan discrimination and engage in it.

    You claim kinship with the civil rights movement, but when Blacks reject the claim, you turn on them, calling them homophobic and bigotted, demonstrating to Black homosexuals racism is resident in your community too.

    You violate every tenet of traditional Christianity, blaspheme the Lord, and then claim superior knowledge of a faith you rejected 30 years ago.

    We we are the hate-filled bigots and hypocrites? Ha.

    Get down off your high horse and join the human race.

    Furthermore, policing involves apprehending and incarcerating suspected criminals. I neither apprehend nor incarcerate, so the policing analogy falls apart in a heart beat.

    All I’m doing—like every other opponent of gay marriage, Christian or otherwise— is engaging the debate concerning gay marriage.

    It’s not my busines what adults to privately, and I have no interest in policing them.

    However, when they force an agenda forcing me to sign off on that which is immoral and injurious to society, then yes, I have a right to speak up, oppose, articulate a point of view and suggest alternative paths to peace and compromise.

    No one I’m aware of is forcing you guys to do anything. In fact, the majority of people are content to live and let live. You are the ones bringing the fight, so stop complaining about the battle you have sparked. If you don’t like the fight, sue for peace.

    One central problem with you guys is you refuse to compromise, you refuse to find ways to peacefully coexist, you insist on making war, and forcing people to submit to your vision of morality. That is tyranny, nothing more. Generally, people don’t like arm twisting. We simply invite you to consider alternatives. You point a gun at us and proclaim: accommodate us or die.

    You are apparently so blinded to your own motivations and methods, and/or so addicted to the lifestyle, you’ve lost a grasp of any rational means of proceeding, thrashing around in continuous sea of anger and hate and verbal violence.

    And you have the gall to call us hateful and bigotted?

    I quote Scripture accurately. You paraphrase to suit your own agenda. These are two vastly different things. If you knew the Savior (and the Word says you can only know him and understand the Word if you have the Spirit and you can only have the Spirit if you are a born-again believer) then you would know he calls his disciples to take a stand for righteousness and “having done all, stand.”

    That is precisely what Christians are doing in opposing gay marriage: taking a stand for righteousness, just as the King commands.

    You can rail against it, and call us every name in the book and in that we know we are right because Jesus also said:

    Matthew 5:10-12

    Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 11 Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. 12 Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.

    Jesus called Paul to missions and ratified his ministry and writings. In his letter to the Ephesians, Paul wrote:

    Chapter 5:11
    Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them.

    Finally, 2 Timothy 3 * speaks directly to the veracity of the Word, what we see today in these end times, and it presents commandments to believers how to proceed:

    1 But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. 2 People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, 3 without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, 4 treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God– 5 having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with them. 6 They are the kind who worm their way into homes and gain control over weak-willed women, who are loaded down with sins and are swayed by all kinds of evil desires, 7 always learning but never able to acknowledge the truth. 8 Just as Jannes and Jambres opposed Moses, so also these men oppose the truth–men of depraved minds, who, as far as the faith is concerned, are rejected. 9 But they will not get very far because, as in the case of those men, their folly will be clear to everyone.

    10 You, however, know all about my teaching, my way of life, my purpose, faith, patience, love, endurance, 11 persecutions, sufferings–what kinds of things happened to me in Antioch, Iconium and Lystra, the persecutions I endured. Yet the Lord rescued me from all of them. 12 In fact, everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted, 13 while evil men and impostors will go from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived. 14 But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have become convinced of, because you know those from whom you learned it, 15 and how from infancy you have known the holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. 16 All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, 17 so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.

  56. dezoars says:

    Mr. Erickson,

    Firstly, LGBT people are not hacked with “Christians”, just the hateful, bigoted, medieval ones.

    OK, we get that your God doesn’t want men to love each other and won’t let them into His Kingdom, wherever that is, but, my friend, we don’t live eternally in His Kingdom, we live here for one brief lifetime on Planet Earth and we should all make the most of it. Anyway, how is this such a sin. There are six references to homosexuality in the bible, right? How many references are there to greed and selfishness? There are 32 references to greed and selfishness, yet there hasn’t been much outcry from “Christians” about the salaries of CEOs, cronyism in the government, war-profiteering or other terrible recent and persistant examples of this most heinous of all sins.

    The a protests of those opposed to Proposition 8, who include gay and straight people, sound fairly tame as you describe them. Did they really “shout threats”? Oh boy! I’m trembling. Do you have any idea what gay men (even more than gay women) have had to go through in this country?

    I have not heard a single argument against gay marriage that doesn’t involve at least a passing reference to Leviticus. “But, it’s just not right!” they cry. People are uneasy about gay marriage because they are queasy about gay sex. That’s it, short and simple. Legalizing gay marriage would be society’s ultimate consent and acceptance of gay sex, so when they support a law like Proposition 8, “traditionalists” are merely betraying their immature and hateful bigotry.

    To paraphrase Ambrose Bierce:

    “If it scares you to think that one man loves another, why not take up knitting?”

    Of course, the bigots like to twist the meaning of “tradition” in America. If there is any tradition in our young nation, it is one of change and progress toward greater freedoms for everyone (the past eight years notwithstanding). It’s the turn of homosexuals – get over it.

    You are not “in for a long fight”. I predict this will be over by about 2025, when gay marriage will be accepted throughout the US. You are in the minority in the developed world and your style of Christianity will be in the minority in America.

    I am straight, married with a child, and attend church weekly. I want gay marriage in my state, in every state and I want it now.

  57. Allan Erickson says:

    You sound like VERUKA, the ultimate flesh monster, and the far Left, including gay activists, are your kindred:

    You prefer Bierce to Christ? Then I leave you to it. But the fact remains, there is a heaven to gain and a hell to shun, and God is not obligated to submit to your folly. He is sovereign and his will most certainly will be done. You might as well try pushing water uphill with your hands as fight the living God.

    Acts 5:29-42

    Persecution strengthens the church. Suffering refines the spirit. A John the Baptist spirit is beginning to blow across the land. You will stand with your mouths agape, trembling at the mighty works of the one called Wonderful.

  58. jesurgislac says:

    The Lord and his Word lead. I follow.

    Secondly, it is absurd to assert anyone believes Jesus is homophobic.

    Well, either you believe Jesus is homophobic, and you’re following your homophobic God, or you believe Jesus is not homophobic, and so far from following Jesus, you’re defying him.

    On the one hand, if Jesus is God, king of the universe, your creator and mine, he owns everything, and therefore He has every right to define right versus wrong, good versus evil.

    If that’s your belief, how can you justify your defiance of Jesus, whom you believe not to be homophobic, and who is therefore in opposition to your actions against LGBT people?

    No one I’m aware of is forcing you guys to do anything.

    Funny, that’s just what I was going to say to you: two men or two women marrying neither break your leg nor pick your pocket, you’ve got no need to object to it except your belief that you must defy Jesus…

  59. Allan Erickson says:

    You’ve been owned and you know it. That’s why you keep repeating yourself.

    http://www.deanoverman.com/

  60. Lexi says:

    Saying that Christians do not assault the LGBT community is completely absurd. In not allowing them their civil rights, you are assaulting them to the worst degree. I’m a Christian, and I am also a part of the Gay-Straight Alliance at my school. Whether or not LGBTs can marry is NOT, I repeat, N-O-T a religious debate. It is a civil right.

    This whole article is so BOGUS I can’t stand it. It’s lame.

  61. Allan Erickson says:

    Come on Lexi. Toughen up. The world is a tough place. If you want to get into the arena you had better learn to stand it. You are obviously bright and you have a caring heart. If that’s true, you care about the truth, and will not ultimately be swayed and cornered by popular culture or peer pressure. Think for yourself. Challenge the assumptions. Explore the contrary point of view. It’s the only way to strengthen your mind. Simply going along and rubber stamping the secular status quo is no challenge. Anyone can remain in their comfort zone. It takes a true intellectual to break free and look at all the possible explanations before making up one’s mind.

    http://www.frc.org/get.cfm?i=bc04c02

    http://www.weeklystandard.com/Content/Public/Articles/000/000/002/938xpsxy.asp

    A BLACK MAN SPEAKS
    http://townhall.com/columnists/HarryRJacksonJr/2008/11/17/no_more_mr_nice_gay

    A JEWISH MAN SPEAKS
    http://www.creators.com/opinion/dennis-prager.html?columnsName=pra

  62. jesurgislac says:

    If that’s true, you care about the truth, and will not ultimately be swayed and cornered by popular culture or peer pressure. Think for yourself. Challenge the assumptions. Explore the contrary point of view. It’s the only way to strengthen your mind.

    Coming from you: hypocritical, or ironic.

  63. Allan Erickson says:

    Neither, if I’ve done the hard work over many years of challenging the assumptions, exploring contrary points of view and resisting the barrage of peer pressure and popular culture.

    ” . . . human beings, all over the earth, have this curious idea that they ought to behave in a certain way, and cannot really get rid of it. (And) that they do not in fact behave in that way. They know the Law of Nature; they break it. These two facts are the foundations of all clear thinking about ourselves and the universe we live in.”

    C.S. Lewis “Mere Christianity” Pg. 21

    “I have come into the world as a light, so that no one who believes in me should stay in darkness.”

    Jesus Christ, John 12:46

  64. Allan Erickson says:

    Lexi,

    Saw this this morning and thought about you.

  65. jesurgislac says:

    if I’ve done the hard work over many years of challenging the assumptions, exploring contrary points of view and resisting the barrage of peer pressure and popular culture.

    And yet somehow, ended right back in unthinking right-wing conservativedom, incapable of listening to anyone who challenges your assumptions, unable to pay attention to contrary points of view, absolutely sunk in an echo chamber of your own right-wing Christian peers who share a popular culture and all the same assumptions and points of view.

  66. Allan Erickson says:

    From bad, to worse, to silly. Running on E now jesurgislac?

  67. Lexi says:

    jesurgislac, Allan Erickson, I have responses to both of you.

    First, to the two of you- You are both bordering on petty in your arguments. I agree with you both to a point, but no one is going to get anywhere with shallow jabs and immature squabbles. Must you really let that go to a point where a high schooler must mediate?

    jesurgislac- You’ve been sarcastic from the beginning. I agree with you, that the rights of LGBTs must be considered, and that laws that take those rights away are ludicrous. However, how do you expect to get your point across if you are childishly rebutting every argument with ridicule of the author?

    Allan Erickson- You are also close-minded as well. Believe me when I say that I have been researching this topic tirelessly. I come from a fairly devout Christian family (everyone has their strays), and my long-time boyfriends’ mother is a Presbyterian pastor whose beliefs are strong about gay marriage and rights. Valid, as well, from that particular standpoint, as she is clergy. One of my favorite uncles is a minister.

    A few acquaintances of mine are lesbian and gay. My cousin is gay as well, though I must admit, I have never met him face-to-face.

    So, you see, I come from no ignorant background. I am fully informed on both sides of the story. I have thought long and hard on the subject, and have decided that I will side with the Founding Fathers of the US on this one:

    Separation of church and state. There’s no argument there. Religious beliefs and politics are to be kept strictly separate. Sadly voiding all Biblical references and arguments.

    I assure you, Mr. Erickson, that I have been challenging myself to stay completely away from any type of social influence or peer pressure. Those do not factor into my stand on this matter. And if you look at my position on this issue, you will realize that I am going very much against the grain with my decision. I am a Christian. I am a supporter of LGBT rights. The two are generally perceived as incompatible views, but they are, in fact, not.

    You’re both right– just about different things.

    jesurgislac- i think it was you, I may be wrong… who said that there were 6 mentions of homosexuality in the Bible, while there were many more of greed and… something else. I really like this. (Like I said, i may be misquoting. I’m just crediting whoever said this as a really good point) Oh well :]

    Allan Erickson- I enjoyed that video, the Father’s letter. I have saved it, and sent it on to my boyfriend and mother. Thank you 🙂

    But just to bring up another point, just for kicks and giggles, what do you think about the idea that some people have about homosexuality being due/partly due to genetics?

    My gay cousin, the one I mentioned earlier, is why I lean towards yes on this, but don’t have a solid opinion yet. Evidently he showed a tendency towards “liking” boys from the time he was in diapers. And when every other boy was starting to have ‘crushes’ on the girls in their class, he had ‘crushes’ on the boys.

    But, like I said, I’d like facts and statistics, and your viewpoints.

  68. jesurgislac says:

    :exi: I agree with you both to a point, but no one is going to get anywhere with shallow jabs and immature squabbles.

    True: this was pure self-indulgence after trying to respond intelligently and thoughtfully to Allan, and getting back nothing but ignorant platitudes.

  69. Lexi says:

    Oh, and Mr. Erickson, since you started this whole thing with your original blog, I should probably let you know–

    Every Friday in my History class, we have ‘Current Events’. Everyone brings an article that they found, and shares it with the entire class. I have decided that I am going to use this blog. It’s not exactly a news article, but it has nuggets of news, just enough for me to connect it back to what we’re learning right now. Sometimes, if there’s a particularly good (or odd) story, the class discusses and debates. Hopefully that will happen with this article. If it does, I’ll be sure to let you know what all my classmates think!

    And don’t worry, I have to fully cite my sources and everything. You;ll get full credit for the article, and my teacher will be tickled pink that I am having a discussion/debate of my own with the author.

  70. Lexi says:

    I’m sorry, I did misquote. It was dezoars who said: (And I [now] quote)

    “There are six references to homosexuality in the bible, right? How many references are there to greed and selfishness? There are 32 references to greed and selfishness, yet there hasn’t been much outcry from “Christians” about the salaries of CEOs, cronyism in the government, war-profiteering or other terrible recent and persistant examples of this most heinous of all sins.”

    This is a really good point, you must admit.

  71. Allan Erickson says:

    Lexi,

    The more the merrier. Thanks for the heads up about your class. University level? I hope some of this material proves useful.

    As to sin, CEOs etc.—greed, selfishness…you are right. Grievous. I was reading with the family this morning from Oswald Chambers, a Brit teacher/preacher back in 1911 who worked in England and Egypt. He made the point Jesus hates all sin, even the thought-life sin that fouls us up so easily. All sin is essentially selfishness isn’t it? Begs the question: why did Christ have to die on the Cross for our sin? Why did he choose to die on the Cross?

    DAILY DEVOTION: OSWALD CHAMBERS
    ‘It is Finished!’

    ” I have finished the work which You have given Me to do”

    —John 17:4

    “The death of Jesus Christ is the fulfillment in history of the very mind and intent of God. There is no place for seeing Jesus Christ as a martyr. His death was not something that happened to Him— something that might have been prevented. His death was the very reason He came.

    Never build your case for forgiveness on the idea that God is our Father and He will forgive us because He loves us. That contradicts the revealed truth of God in Jesus Christ. It makes the Cross unnecessary, and the redemption “much ado about nothing.” God forgives sin only because of the death of Christ. God could forgive people in no other way than by the death of His Son, and Jesus is exalted as Savior because of His death. “We see Jesus . . . for the suffering of death crowned with glory and honor . . .” ( Hebrews 2:9 ). The greatest note of triumph ever sounded in the ears of a startled universe was that sounded on the Cross of Christ— “It is finished!” ( John 19:30 ). That is the final word in the redemption of humankind.

    Anything that lessens or completely obliterates the holiness of God, through a false view of His love, contradicts the truth of God as revealed by Jesus Christ. Never allow yourself to believe that Jesus Christ stands with us, and against God, out of pity and compassion, or that He became a curse for us out of sympathy for us. Jesus Christ became a curse for us by divine decree. Our part in realizing the tremendous meaning of His curse is the conviction of sin. Conviction is given to us as a gift of shame and repentance; it is the great mercy of God. Jesus Christ hates the sin in people, and Calvary is the measure of His hatred.”

  72. Allan Erickson says:

    PS Lexi,

    As to you taking the both of us to the woodshed, points well taken. I’ll try to avoid the jabs. That too is part of the fallen/sinful nature: slapping back rather than turning the other cheek.

    However, I resist your assertion having a strong point of view makes one narrow-minded. In my 55 years I have navigated all over the political and moral map. Raised in a nominal Christian home, I had no strong spiritual or political leanings one way or the other out of high school. In college from 1971-75 I became far left in my orientation: pro-choice, pro-gay marriage, hyper environmentalist, and worked for a long while as an advocacy journalist promoting Native American rights, and other causes. As I learned, read more, interviewed people, and allowed my presuppositions to be challenged, I slowly changed my mind on certain topics. Some things changed, others did not. (Most recently I was one of the main organizers to sponsor a seminar on racism in Portland for example.) I have no particular axe to grind with homosexuals. You and I both have friends in the LGBT community. Believe me, it would be much easier, less hassle, and much more convenient to simply relent and agree with the idea of sanctioned gay marriage. For the many reasons I’ve stated, not my own opinion, but from the wisdom of Scripture (book of Jude is another reference, as it the Genesis account of Sodom) I simply cannot sign on that dotted line. Doesn’t mean I hate gays or am afraid of them. It only means I think gay marriage is a bad idea. Shoot folks, I was in theatre and filmmaking for years. Don’t you think I got my butt pinched a few times? Did I ever retaliate or freak out or get hacked about it? No. In fact, we had a laugh. So, far from being the fire-breathing Pharisaical homophobe and bigot some think I am, I’m only a Christian with a point of view, and if I’m wrong about gay marriage, the Lord will make that very clear. He is able. Thanks again for your insights and advice!

  73. Allan Erickson says:

    “For even the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.” Mark 10:45

  74. Allan Erickson says:

    jes,

    If all you find here are “ignorant platitudes” then why do you keep coming back?

    People who know they are operating contrary to the will of God have one of two choices.

    They can come around and cooperate with God, which is the highest good for anyone, or, they can continue to ignore the warning lights on the dashboard, ignoring the voice of conscience, working feverishly to beat the conscience into submission.

    Beat that conscience long enough, and it dies. And without a conscience, a person becomes less than human.

  75. jesurgislac says:

    Allan, I’ve been coming bac k to this last comment a lot, and thinking about it .

    You know – if you’re f amiliar with the gospels at all – that your message of hate and judgementalism is flat contrary to everything that Jesus actually said, and you’ve asserted you believe Jesus is God.

    Whereas… I am an atheist, as you must be aware, just a very well read one.

    So, I think this comment actually applies very directly to you. You’re talking about /to yourself here.

    And if you really believe this of yourself – you’re becoming less than human because you’re working feverishly to beat your conscience into submission – then I don’t think it’s actually fair to tease you about it. But I do recommend, if you feel that s eriously about it, that you try to get back into living in accordance with your conscience again – not only is it obviously not sitting right with you, when you write such things about yourself, but I also think that this much hatred is just not good for you. For anyone. It’s a drug, of sorts, and you n eed to quit it.

    Take care. I really won’t be back.

  76. Allan Erickson says:

    Matthew 5:

    1 Now when he saw the crowds, he went up on a mountainside and sat down. His disciples came to him, 2 and he began to teach them, saying:

    3 “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 4 Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted. 5 Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth. 6 Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled. 7 Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy. 8 Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God. 9 Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called sons of God. 10 Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 11 “Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. 12 Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.

    13 “You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled by men. 14 “You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. 16 In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.

    17 “Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. 18 I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished. 19 Anyone who breaks one of the least of these commandments and teaches others to do the same will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever practices and teaches these commands will be called great in the kingdom of heaven. 20 For I tell you that unless your righteousness surpasses that of the Pharisees and the teachers of the law, you will certainly not enter the kingdom of heaven.

    21 “You have heard that it was said to the people long ago, ‘Do not murder, and anyone who murders will be subject to judgment.’ 22 But I tell you that anyone who is angry with his brother will be subject to judgment. Again, anyone who says to his brother, ‘Raca,’ is answerable to the Sanhedrin. But anyone who says, ‘You fool!’ will be in danger of the fire of hell. 23 “Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, 24 leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to your brother; then come and offer your gift. 25 “Settle matters quickly with your adversary who is taking you to court. Do it while you are still with him on the way, or he may hand you over to the judge, and the judge may hand you over to the officer, and you may be thrown into prison. 26 I tell you the truth, you will not get out until you have paid the last penny.

    27 “You have heard that it was said, ‘Do not commit adultery.’ 28 But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart. 29 If your right eye causes you to sin, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell. 30 And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to go into hell. 31 “It has been said, ‘Anyone who divorces his wife must give her a certificate of divorce.’ 32 But I tell you that anyone who divorces his wife, except for marital unfaithfulness, causes her to become an adulteress, and anyone who marries the divorced woman commits adultery.

    33 “Again, you have heard that it was said to the people long ago, ‘Do not break your oath, but keep the oaths you have made to the Lord.’ 34 But I tell you, Do not swear at all: either by heaven, for it is God’s throne; 35 or by the earth, for it is his footstool; or by Jerusalem, for it is the city of the Great King. 36 And do not swear by your head, for you cannot make even one hair white or black. 37 Simply let your ‘Yes’ be ‘Yes,’ and your ‘No,’ ‘No’; anything beyond this comes from the evil one.

    38 “You have heard that it was said, ‘Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.’ 39 But I tell you, Do not resist an evil person. If someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also. 40 And if someone wants to sue you and take your tunic, let him have your cloak as well. 41 If someone forces you to go one mile, go with him two miles. 42 Give to the one who asks you, and do not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you.

    43 “You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ 44 But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45 that you may be sons of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. 46 If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? 47 And if you greet only your brothers, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? 48 Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.

  77. Lexi says:

    Kinda sad how this morphed from an educational and interesting debate/discussion to a battle of wits.

  78. Allan Erickson says:

    Agreed.

  79. […] From the Ashes Blog Archive Sacred RetreatFlesh Works and Spirit Fruits The Word of God BlogThe Conservative Devaluation of Marriage An Apostate’s ChapelWhy are LGBT people so hacked with Christians? GOODNESS WORLD LIFE BLOG […]

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