Repeat After Me: “There is No Such Thing as a “Homosexual Lifestyle.”

conceptual shot representin teh emotions sadness and depression

Today I read another Christian article alluding to a “same-sex lifestyle”. How we’re still talking like this as reasonable, intelligent adults in 2016 is fairly baffling in itself, but since some of us are let’s try to dig a little deeper and figure out just these folks are saying when they say it. 

The implication in such terminology is that there are some physical behaviors that can be separated out from someone’s core identity; that a person can be authentically one thing as an internal reality and yet act very selectively in a way that runs in direct opposition to it.

Without fail, a Conservative Christian makes this assertion about an LGBTQ person, in an effort to say that their “homosexuality” is what they do, not who they are. They contend that these people can manage these outward behaviors and all will be well. A man who is attracted to men, they suggest, is really heterosexual and simply acting in a way that denies this (for reasons they usually can’t coherently name other than they hate their fathers or God).

This leads to the common Church concept of a person being a “practicing homosexual”.

Those lazily tossing around such terms usually have little regard for just how such an idea falls completely apart if they are asked to consider whether or not they are a “practicing heterosexual”. (Such an idea then becomes rightly ludicrous.) When it comes to their own identity and their own sexuality and their own sense of attraction and affection, they know full well that they act because they are a particular way. Their identity is not dictated by their behavior.

We all have a gender identity and a sexual orientation and these things all fall along a vast and complicated continuum. It is this specific combination of both how we see ourselves and who we are drawn to that form this essential part of who we are.

This is such a simple idea, but one the Church seems willfully intending to miss in order to still hold onto the prejudices and fears our faith inherited 3500 years ago when we didn’t know what we know now. These people are deliberately choosing to not know now; preferring religion to reality—and it’s ruining people’s lives and pushing them from the Church in droves.

The idea for any of us, that who we are internally and what we do with our bodies can be compartmentalized is plainly ridiculous, and furthermore it’s irresponsible and dangerous to perpetuate such falsehoods in the Church. These teachings compel people, out of some guilt-induced desire to please God or in an effort to fit into religious community, to curb any outward expressions of their gender identity and sexual orientation. Many go as far as getting married to people of the opposite gender in an effort to behave themselves right; to fake-it-till-they-make-it.

And one of two things invariably happens: They either die never being their most authentic selves, or they decide to stop suppressing their truth and it all blows up.

The trail of depression, addiction, self-harm, divorces, and broken families it leaves is one of modern Christianity’s greatest sins. It’s creating unnecessary suffering. It’s forcing people into duplicity. It’s applying a rule to the LGBTQ community that doesn’t exist for straight, cisgender Christians.

Whatever our gender identity and sexual orientation are, these things do not become less or more so based on our behavior or by what we choose to show to the world. The Church and its leaders need to allow this simple reality to inform our theology, rather than clinging to our theology even if it perpetuates an old lie. We need to allow time, Science, History, and Humanity to educate us so that we treat people with the dignity befitting them. If we are to rightly love others as ourselves, we need to agree that they operate the same way that we do.

There is no such thing as a homosexual lifestyle.
There is no such thing as a heterosexual lifestyle.
There are only lives.

There are only individual human beings who have completely unique identities and inclinations to love and be loved, and God has placed them there. There is nothing we can do to alter those things in ourselves by acting or not acting in certain ways, and we can’t change those realities in other people by forcing them to behave in a way that we desire.

People need and deserve to be the most authentic version of themselves; at home, at work, with family, in society—and especially in spiritual community.

We need a Church and Christians wise and honest and brave enough to admit this, and to move ahead with creating a bigger table where all people can gather as they are.

This doesn’t have to be difficult. Christians need to stop making it so.

 

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535 thoughts on “Repeat After Me: “There is No Such Thing as a “Homosexual Lifestyle.”

  1. I know I am going to regret the thousands of emails I will receive in response to this post, but thank you, John, for addressing this head on.

    Within various churches, there is this constant drumbeat of prejudice so strong that it drowns out facts. People are afraid of that which is different from themselves, I get that. But when we remember that all people are created in the image and likeness of God, then it seems clear to me that all people whatever race, creed, color, sexual preference, gender, age, have far more in common than otherwise because we all participate in the Imagio Dei.

    I simply DO NOT understand how hard that is to understand.

    People are people are people are people exactly as it delighted God to create them. People lead the lives God intends them to lead.

    And if anyone reading this want to go all gung ho after me for writing this comment I say to you:

    #1) you may very well be very deep in the closet and terrified to come out because you are part of one of these churches described above where neighbors are not loved as one’s self

    or

    #2) you may be a man terrified that you are going to be raped. To which I say, get over yourself. We women live with a fear of being raped starting aroubnd age fourteen. We live with tht fear, we endure that fear and we don’t let it stop us from pursuing our lives even though every single day . 90% of rape victims, 10% male and most of those occur in our prisons and in the military where heterosexual males are raping straight men. 1 out of every 6 USian woman is either raped or has experienced attemtped rape, while for men it is 1 out of 133. Google it.

    There is no such thing as a homosexual lifestyle. A person who is born homosexual has as little choice to be born that way than you had about the eye or hair color you were born with.

    • Then please explain why the New Testament says what it does about homosexuality. Do er just ignor Gods Word? Explain what the bible says about sin and infidelity and lying, cheating and stealing. Where does the bible day people are born homosexual, Do we just pretend it doesn’t exist? Just asking!

      • This question has already been addressed extensively as the comments on a different blog post.

        Apparently, you skipped over my point #1.

        While I don’t wish to be rude, asking where in the Bible does it say people are born homosexual is a stupid question. For one thing, the Bible doesn’t ever say that all of humanity is born straight, either. Just that people are created in the Imagio Dei.

        For another thing, the Bible is not a scientific textbook which would explain, chromosomes, genes and genetic markers.

        For a third thing, it has been amply demonstrated that readings of the various English translations do not do justice to the original languages and the first authors’ intent to their first audiences.

        For a fourth thing, before you start bashing me over the head with the Holiness Code, please provide me evidence that you comply with the **entire** Holiness Code in your own life.

        For a fifth thing, what Paul writes about is not homosexuality. When he talks about unatural desires, he writes about Roman men who are straight who choose to act in a way for sexual kicks.

        Once again I strongly recommend four books. Please read these books before you comment on this post.

        Reasonable and Holy: Engaging Same-Sexuality
        by Tobias Stanislas Haller

        God and the Gay Christian: The Biblical Case in Support of Same-Sex Relationships
        by Matthew Vines

        Same-Sex Unions in Premodern Europe
        by John Boswell

        Christianity, Social Tolerance, and Homosexuality: Gay People in Western Europe from the Beginning of the Christian Era to the Fourteenth Century
        by John Boswell

        • Your demand that I read these is absurd. Did you read the books I recommended before you posted? Matthew Vines is a college dropout and a practicing homosexual wanting desperately to be validated. A host of real scholars disagree with him; All educated, Ph.D. Wesley Hill, Michael Brown, Tim Keller, John Piper, NT Wright, John Stott, JI Packer.

          And, your interpretation of Romans 1 is wrong. All of these scholars disagree.

          Also consult KEVIN De Young, What Does the Bible Really Say about Homosexuality. Read it. He explains all the Biblical basis for homosexual practice being sin.

          • John, the more you raise a shrill voice in screed, the more you convince me and a lot of other people that you are really deep in the closet.

            Please come out. You will be a much happier person.

            • Gloriamarie….Denial is not a river in Egypt. By “Sexual preference” as you listed above, that description denotes choice. So if I “prefer” little boys or girls or maybe I “prefer” my dog, Thats my preference so God will be ok with that? Not that you are condoning that kind of behavior because its illegal but sadly many of our fellow human beings do. It doesn’t take a brain surgeon to figure out there are two sexes, male and female with body parts designed by God to fit one to the other. Pro creation. Behavior leads to actions, this is what is judged by God to be sin or not sin, wrong or right. I “prefer” to lie and cheat my way to success in business so the end justifies the means? because its my “preference”, that is what I am “oriented” to be or to do? We tend to justify our “behavior” because we don’t like rejection or judgement by God or people. Understanding biblical truth can be difficult and takes time, humility, a willingness to “lean not on your own understanding” but acknowledging Gods truth which is revealed through His word, the bIble. I don’t have all the answers but I do know Gods word says homosexual sex, gay sex, lesbian sex..lets go a step further fornication…sex outside of marriage is WRONG. There are a lot of things God calls sin that we all need to repent and be “saved”from, “all have sinned and fall short of the Glory of God” .
              Deception and delusion, (2 Thessalonians 2) is running rampant in our world today. We need Gods truth not our own. “Ask and it will be given, seek and you will find, knock and the door will be opened” but if we “seek” our own truth apart from Gods we will continue to be lost.

              • Dale you are comparing things which are not equal. People who abuse children and animals are not attracted to them they are attracted to the power over them. The attraction I have to women is a desire for relational intimacy. It’s not about abusing someone. Big difference.

              • There is a difference between illegal and immoral. Repeat: There is a difference between illegal and immoral . . . unless we are under Sharia Law.

            • Really? Anyone who disagrees with you and offers valid scholarly resources is really just hiding in the closet? You just totally lost any consideration I was giving your blog…

          • I read everything on all sides that I could get my hands on including the people listed here by both John and Gloriamarie.

            John the best of those you listed is Wesley Hill. He lives as a celibate gay Christian. If people are well suited for it and they are not of the mind to pursue a same sex marriage and they need help with how to thrive as a celibate gay christian. I recommend that you check out the Spiritual Friendship blog.

            https://spiritualfriendship.org

          • A couple of other books worth a read are “five uneasy pieces” and “pieces of ease and grace”.

            These volumes present an interpretation of the biblical passages often cited to condemn same sex relationships.

            It is worth remembering that there is not a consensus between biblical scholars on what the bible says.

              • If you read the Bible in a bad English translation, then absolutely, “practicing homosexuality” is not okay. But if you read the Bible in the original languages, then “practicing homosexuality” is not mentioned and therefore not spoken against.

                So I guess it comes down to how we interpret “legitimate”. Does legitimate mean that the scholar interprets the Bible as it was written or as it was translated? Does it mean that the scholar confirms your own prejudices? Does it mean that the scholar challenges you to think in different ways? Does it mean that the scholar actively works to oppress an identifiable demographic? Does it mean that the scholar recognises the overarching principle of love no matter what that runs through scripture?

                • Any translation that uses the word “homosexual” is not accurate. The word itself was not even coined until the early 1900’s.

        • To that list I would add a fourth book. The title is “Gay Unions” written by the Rev. Gray Temple (Jr.). The subtitle is “In the light of Scripture, Tradition and Reason.” The author address issues in a very accessible format using an assortment of Biblical texts and resources. Gray was the rector (Senior Priest) of a charismatic congregation in Atlanta.

          And once again, John, thank you for your words.

        • Thanks for the four book suggestions. I have not read them, but will go over to ABE books and see what I can find! As a side note, I was at my town’s (population 25,000) city hall meeting about granting a permit for a gay pride parade. I knew it would be contentious, but what stuck with me was a white haired, very well dressed gentleman who said he was a local pastor, and he asked the mayor and other officials to “Not be swayed by the sodomites.” !!! I was shocked to here that term—I thought it went out with the English Reformation!

          • Good grief and gravy, Randy, one wouldn’t expect to hear such a term in 2016.

            So glad I am a part of a faith tradition that doesn’t require one to check one’s brain at the door.

      • The bible condones slavery. We don’t believe in slavery anymore. We always pick and choose. We don’t demand that a dowry of goats and sheep is not paid anymore. We don’t demand that the brother marry his widowed sister in law when his brother dies. How many wives did King David have?

        WE HAVE ALWAYS PICK AND CHOSEN EVERYTHING.

      • Try to remember that your Bible is not the original Bible… it is a translation of it. And depending on which translation you use, it may not be a very good translation of it. Why does the New Testament say what it does about homosexuality? In which translation? Because the translations don’t all agree. Or in the original Greek? Because in the original Greek, what we understand as homosexuality is not even mentioned. There is a reference to people who tried to tamper with their sexuality, living in a way that was not consistent with their own nature, because both their culture and their religion expected them to. And the New Testament called that a mistake. But that’s the absolute closest thing to a reference to homosexuality in the Greek New Testament. And the Hebrew Old Testament? The only reference to homosexuality is indirect, in the mention of two marriages between persons of the same sex. Bet you didn’t see that in any of your translations, did you? But there they are in the Hebrew text.
        http://hoperemains.webs.com

        • Try to remember that your Bible is not the original Bible… it is a translation of it.

          That’s good information to follow William. Your translation is only as good as the person who translated it, with regard to their proclivities. With you being a gay man, of course your version or translation is going to be Ok with homosexuality. That’s like asking a murderer to rewrite the local penal code.

          I have a very hard time believing that all the other translations out there, which were most likely done by varied individuals, would get that much about the bible so wrong as you allude to. I find it very hard to believe that you got a hold of an original copy that someone else has possibly never used or that your version/method of translation is better than anyone else’s. I find it very hard to believe that you could have been totally objective in your endeavors and come up with such different conclusions.

          Here’s the thing. I’m not under any condemnation when it comes to homosexuality and it being a sin or not. In fact, you could remove it for me and I’d be in the same spiritual situation as a lot of folks. But one thing to remember is that it’s not the type of sin that condemns, it’s the presence of sin and it’s penalty that we should fear the most. Not all sins are equal, but they are all damnable. To reduce that validity from the Bible is to mock God himself and his ability to judge and discern what he calls good.

          On the opposite side of the coin, you could add many other sins to the bible and the effect would be the same as far as what the bible’s intention is towards us, why beat a dead horse. But there is more than enough information in what was wrote for our benefit to see who we are in relation to who God is and come to the understanding that we fall so very short of His righteousness, thereby needing to repent of our sins and the need for a savior.

          By reducing the severity or accountability of our soul condition with regard to God’s holiness is an attempt to defraud God of his glory. It is thievery at the very least. (PS…that’s a damnable sin as well, but one that can be repented of if brought to the attention of the sinner)

          • I don’t have special access to previously unknown ancient documents. I have, and have used, exactly the same Hebrew and Greek texts other translators use. And up until about 400 years ago, most translations agreed substantially with mine. But it was at that time that the churches sponsoring vernacular translations allowed their particular beliefs to influence the work. Bibles were changed to reflect church teachings. Some of those errors exist in only a few versions, while some are ubiquitous, in every vernacular translation. (The first two verses of John’s Gospel are wrong in EVERY commonly available English version. The Greek text does NOT say that the Word was “with” God, but that it pertained to, or meant, God.) But any first year student of biblical languages could see the errors in translation. But few students take the time to learn the languages well enough to actually read the texts. The texts themselves are commonly available, even online, so that’s not a problem. But most seminary students have little interest in learning the languages. Most have believed that their Bibles are accurate, and therefore believe there is no need for closer scrutiny.
            I once believed that as well. I was from a church that taught us that King James was the only accurate English Bible, and I believed that because the church taught it, and I didn’t think they would lie about it. I learned the original languages, not for the purpose of studying scripture or proving/disproving anything, but because I am a linguist, love languages, and study as many as I can. I began to read the original texts, fully expecting that they would completely support the KJV translation. I was absolutely stunned to find they did not, in a number of areas. I have since learned that KJV was designed to be read from the pulpits of Anglican churches. The Anglican church, like all churches in the 17th century, believed that the church overruled the Bible in matters of doctrine. But, at the same time, it was essential that an English Bible to be read in their churches agree doctrinally with their church. And so the translators tweaked the text, made some alterations to bring it into harmony with church teaching. They thought they were justified in doing so because, again, they believed the church had the final word on doctrine, that it was the church that was supposed to decide what the Bible taught, and not the Bible that was supposed to decide what the church taught.
            Most of the teachings the translators sought to support were not unique to Anglicanism, but were shared by most of Christianity… but not necessarily believed by the early church, and not taught by scripture. But most of those teachings continue to be taught by many churches, and if any publisher released a Bible that was completely honest in its translation today, it would not sell. Most churches would reject it because it would undermine some of their central teachings. So even churches that believe sola scriptura, who believe that the Bible should be the source of doctrine, are willing to sacrifice truth in favor of the traditional teachings of their church, and would reject, rather than investigate, any Bible that cast doubt on those teachings.

            • Thank you so much for this explanation. It really puts the puzzle together for me. I am not a linguist (although my parents are) so I examine interlinears online and I pay attention to how rabbis do their interpretation of Hebrew. You have provided an answer to my lingering question about why we accept translations that clearly do not represent the original texts.

            • And up until about 400 years ago, most translations agreed substantially with mine.

              Why then are these not made known today? Why then have not the LBGT community rallied for their release?

              The question of what Godly purpose does homosexuality serve still exists. It is a dead end in terms of creation and legacy. That alone seems to put it at odds with what God has for His creation in general. Still yet are the facts that homosexuality came after sin entered into this world and the restrictions that God imposed upon human sexual relations. He also made no mention of switching between heterosexual unions and homosexual unions, giving thought that there should only be one type of union. Also, the mention of a woman being a help-meet for the man without the mention of male-male or female-female pairings leaves one to draw an obvious conclusion that the homosexual pairing is not what God had in mind for His creation. Are those points left out or changed as well?

              • Every time that LGBTQ or straight theologians make the point about the bad translations, people who have based their life’s work on their understanding of the bad translations as being the only good and true word of God rise up with charges of blasphemy and heresy. The question isn’t so much why hasn’t it been done, but why has it been done and not heard and understood.

                • As for what purpose homosexuality serves, the purpose has been well explained in other comments on this article. The purpose can also easily be learned through a simple Google search.

                  • A Google search? You are kidding, right? Homosexuality is a deviation from God’s plan for sex. It is a result of brokenness and the fall. Often it is the result of some childhood trauma -sexual abuse, for example. It is not pleasing to God, since it is a perversion of His plan for sex. Therefore it is a sin.

                    • I suggest you do that Google search, because most of what you think you know about homosexuality is wrong. The notion that it is caused by some kind of trauma or sexual abuse was discounted, debunked, almost half a century ago.
                      Your view that it is a sin, etc., is just that: your view. It is not shared by all Christians and Jews, particularly those who can read scripture in the original languages.

                    • Jose, what bunk. None of the gay people I know were traumatized. Including my father and my child. My daughter was raised to love Jesus and has now been driven away because of people like you insisting that she’s somehow damaged and unworthy.

                      Thankfully, she still considers God. She hasn’t completely walked away. But people certainly have tried to ensure she knows that she’s not ‘right’, and definitely not welcome in their churches (despite all of my work to help her know she is loved and cherished and that God has a plan for her).

                      My father? He knows full well that he’s never welcome in a church. He knows God hates him. So, you’ve done your job masterfully.

                      Stop spreading lies–it’s insulting to parents like me and many healthy, wonderful gay folks I know.

                    • If God’s plan for sex is a male penetrating a female and making a baby, then why does God make so many people who are sterile or homosexual or asexual or hermaphrodite and with many interesting combinations of X and Y? It certainly isn’t so that the likes of you can have a target for your petty bigotry. So yeah, do a Google search. Learn something.

              • What release? What are you talking about? There is nothing hidden, secret. Hebrew and Greek texts and early translations are freely available… in bookstores, and online for free.
                In nature, among species that mate for life, homosexual pairs exist. Their existence serves two vital functions: By not reproducing, they help to avoid overpopulation and a strain on resources. At the same time, these pairs will usually adopt and raise orphaned young, thus ensuring the survival of the species. It’s a brilliantly designed system, created by God, and would work exactly the same in humans were it not for intervention by humans who think they know better than God.
                In regard to help meet, let me give you a little Hebrew lesson. The words in Genesis translated as “help meet” are “ezer k’negdo.” Ezer means helper. But it’s not the feminine form, it’s the masculine form. The feminine form of helper would be ezrah. But God didn’t say He was going to make an ezrah, but an ezer. K’negdo literally means “as against him,” or, “as opposite him.” It implies a mirror image, an exact duplicate.
                God could have created the ezer out of the same dust from which He had made the first man. But He didn’t. Instead, He took part of the first one, and formed a second one from it. That’s called cloning. A clone cannot have a different sex than the original.
                When Adam saw the woman for the first time, he didn’t remark on any physical differences, which, never having seen a human female, he certain would have… had their been any. The fact is, they were identical, which is pretty much what he said: bone of my bones, flesh of my flesh.
                Procreation wasn’t needed until after the fall. Much of creation needed to be revamped due to sin. Since death came into being, all creation needed to be able to reproduce to replace those who died. Originally all animals were herbivores. Now many species would need new dentition and digestive tracts in order to be carnivores or omnivores. It was at this time that the actual physical differentiation between the sexes would have come into being… when it was actually needed. There was no need for reproduction, or any kind of sexuality, in an enclosed garden in the absence of death.
                The notion that God only countenances one form of marriage is not biblical. Adam and Eve cannot be used as role models for all future marriages: Their marriage was by default: there were no other people. Historically, four forms of marriage have existed. Three of those four are recorded in scripture, although with translation errors, only two of those are easily seen in English Bibles.
                Of the three forms originally recorded, none were forbidden, with narrow exceptions: one form, polygamy, was forbidden only to Jewish priests, and Christian bishops and deacons. It was not forbidden to anyone else, and without it, there would have been no twelve tribes of Israel, and King David’s lineage (the messianic lineage) would have ended with him.
                That, by the way, is the most common form of marriage recorded in the Bible. Heterosexual monogamy is also recorded. But so is homosexual monogamy. There are two such marriages recorded in the Hebrew text of the Old Testament. Neither was condemned by God or any extant prophet. One is recorded in some detail, the other only mentioned in passing. But in the case of that second one, it specifies God as the One who put the two into their relationship.
                The fourth form of marriage, not recorded in scripture, but also not forbidden by it, is polyandry, another form of polygamy. (Polygamy comes in two forms: polygyny, which is the most common: one man with more than one wife; and polyandry: one woman with more than one husband.)
                I recommend the Hope Remains website, which has more details on Adam/Eve, as well as same-sex marriage in the Bible. http://hoperemains.webs.com

      • Linda, the New Testament doesn’t say anything about homosexuality. If the Bible you are reading has the word “homosexual” in it, you are reading a bad translation. It does discuss some negative sexual acts that are negative no matter what the orientation of the participant.

        Why do you equate sin, infidelity, lying, cheating and stealing specifically with homosexuals? Heterosexuals do the majority of the sinning, infidelity, lying, cheating and stealing, because they are the vast majority of the population. Why do you not condemn them?

        The Bible does not specifically say that people are born gay because it is not a recent medical textbook. The factors behind why some of God’s children are born gay are just now being discovered and understood. Some people understand that the Bible does say that people are born gay, but in a roundabout way. “For there are eunuchs who were born that way”. Matthew 19:12. We understand clearly about eunuchs who are made through surgical procedure, but to understand the first phrase of this verse, we have to know what the people of Biblical times understood. A born eunuch was a male who was born with unclear genitalia, incomplete genitalia, or with sexually non-functioning genitalia. A born eunuch could also be a male who could not sexually function with a woman. While some gay men can occasionally sexually function with a woman, some cannot.

        Further, if your test for acceptability is what the Bible says about it, the Bible does not speak positively about converting text into electronic impulses and sending them worldwide. And yet, here you are.

      • The Bible says nothing about homosexuality, nor would it since this is a relatively recent concept.

        It comes down to science; the present state of scientific understanding is not complete but we are very far from the “darkness” which Darwin described as surrounding the whole subject.

        This article shows some recent progress…

        http://www.natureworldnews.com/articles/10443/20141118/homosexuality-genetic-strongest-evidence.htm

        …though not mentioning other recent neurobiological studies that have found clear neuro-anatomical differences that had to be present from very early development.

        Social researchers have noted that societies which rigidly segregate and polarise genders have particularly high levels of early same sex relations, though most of these people go on to have heterosexual lives.

        I imagine that Jews and early Christians, encountering the rapacious, cruel and violent sexual culture of ancient Rome would have been utterly appalled, as most of us moderns would also be. And that Paul’s strong condemnations express this visceral revulsion. It is exploitation and violence that we must shun, not natural sexual orientation which is simply the way that a percentage of any human group feels and expresses their need for intimate physical affection and love.

        BTW – hi Gloria-Marie! Nice to see you here

      • Romans 14:10-12 So where does that leave you when you criticize a brother? And where does that leave you when you condescend to a sister? I’d say it leaves you looking pretty silly—or worse. Eventually, we’re all going to end up kneeling side by side in the place of judgment, facing God. Your critical and condescending ways aren’t going to improve your position there one bit. Read it for yourself in Scripture:

        “As I live and breathe,” God says,
        “every knee will bow before me;
        Every tongue will tell the honest truth
        that I and only I am God.”
        So tend to your knitting. You’ve got your hands full just taking care of your own life before God.

        13-14 Forget about deciding what’s right for each other. Here’s what you need to be concerned about: that you don’t get in the way of someone else, making life more difficult than it already is. I’m convinced—Jesus convinced me!—that everything as it is in itself is holy. We, of course, by the way we treat it or talk about it, can contaminate it.

      • Exceptionally well said. The only way John can make his point is by ignoring the Bible. If he used the same interpretation method to arrive at his ridiculous conclusion, he couldn’t even believe in salvation, the resurrection or the crucifixion. He cherry picks the Bible passages to suit his own interpretation.

      • It’s a start! Kind of like we pretend that Colossians 3:22, Ephesians 6:5, 1 Peter 2:18, Matthew 19:9, Matthew 5:18, most importantly, Romans 1:21 (this will show you’ve never gotten to know the struggling closet gays in your church) don’t exist.

    • I’d really love to know where you get your information regarding the rash of heterosexual men raping other men in the military. It’s clearly not from any experience at all. Factuality doesn’t seem to be something you concern yourself with before you hit “post comment.”

      • ” Factuality doesn’t seem to be something you concern yourself with before you hit “post comment.””

        Actually, you are the one entranced with lies and misinformation. Approximately 14,000 men were raped by other men in the military this past year. Google it.

    • What you fail to understand about our Creator, is that He has designed us to be able to create also. Satan, who hates everything about God and His creation, will do everything in His power to pervert what God intends for His glory.

      Sex, in the context of a marriage between a man and woman, is a joining together of two beings into one. It is a picture of the unity our Creator desires to have with us, and the natural result is the creation of LIFE.

      Sex between people of the same gender is a mockery of all that God intended and can never produce life.

        • Daisy, he did not say anything about “people who cannot reproduce should not get married”….you are just diverting from the truth of what he was trying to get across.

      • This doesn’t make sense. People shouldn’t make up stories and blame Satan all the time. Get to know a gay couple and you will find they are everyday people just like you. Your lifestyles is just like ours.

      • Tom, when I encounter homophobia so pronounced as yours I can think only one of two things is motivating your homophobia.

        #1) You are deep in the closet and terrified to come out

        #2) You are afraid of being raped. In which case, welcome to the world of women and please do everything you can to prevent violence to women and children.

        If it’s #1, I beg you to allow the light to pierce the darkness of that closet and allow the truth of who God created you to be to set you free.

      • So, if my husband and I choose not to have children, does that mean we are not allowed to experience sex? Can you point me to where in the Bible it dictates that sexual interaction is only for a married man and woman who intend to procreate? If we decide to have one kid, does that mean we have to stop having sex after that? In that case, perhaps as Christians, we should stop teaching that sex is a wonderful, God-given part of our relationships, since you seem to feel we are all damning ourselves to hell if we are not having sex with the intention to procreate.

      • So I take it, you only had one woman, never had sex outside of marriage, never used birth control. Everything you had sex you created life. You never had sex for fun, you only hadnsex when your wife was ovulating. Couples who are older, pass child bearing years should not marry it couples who are unable to procreate should separate??????

    • Gloriamarie… RE your pastoral need: this is the church that Ive been praying about for you. [They told me that they are in contact w/ you. God is faithful. ]

      Horizon Christian Fellowship
      5331 Mt. Alifan Drive. SD.
      858-277-4991
      Pastor Dustin Estel. email; distal@hcr.org.

    • AMEN and THANK YOU to you and John!!!!!

      If you say you believe in God and say you are a Christian then you believe that we are ALL made in God’s image and are perfect in God’s eyes. God chose to create me as a gay male. It is not for me to question why for that is a question that can never be answered. It is simply a part of my entire being. A lot of people think that it is a choice…hmmm, should I be gay today? That is NOT the case. There is, however, a choice to be made upon realizing one is gay. The choice is…do I live my life being true to how I was created or do I live a lie to fit in to what is perceived to be the societal norm. Being gay does not mean that you have to buy in to all the stereotypes of what gay is supposed to be. Gay is simply a part of who you are. It doesn’t mean you have to give up the values and morals you have been raised with….and if you do that is a personal choice.

    • You are absolutely correct. As an advocate for the LGBTQ community and the mother of a gay son, there is no “gay lifestyle.” John is not only so correct, but he is a man who teaches true Christianity and gives hope to those of us driven away by the alt-right’s version. LGBTQ people are no different from cis/straight people. They live, they love, the accept others much more readily than those who use the bible as a weapon instead of the basis if God’s overwhelming love.

  2. Thanks once again, John, for putting it so well. Jesus did not say to love only certain people or those who agreed with you – we are commanded to love EVERYONE. And it really is not possible to love someone if you only love ‘certain parts’ of them (the illogical premise of loving the sinner while hating the sin). God is the one to judge- not us. Thanks again.

  3. Keep up the good work Pastor John! I am proud to be a member of a church with at least 3 open LGBT members. Who knows how many more there are and more importantly who cares and why should they?

  4. This post is so full of misinformation that it is hard to know where to start.

    The proper term is not even mentioned. That is same sex attraction (SSA). God’s perfect design was for normal sexuality, meaning a man and a woman. But, we live in a fallen world. Some people have disordered sexual orientation, meaning the normal attraction is, instead, an abnormal one.

    SSA in itself is not a sin. It depends on what you do with it. For Christians who struggle with SSA there are only two choices. First, celibacy. Second, getting help for the disorder so there is proper ordering. This could result in opposite sex marriage, as God intended.

    But, some choose a homosexual lifestyle. Yes, there is one. Once an SSA person chooses to follow the homosexual path, that becomes their identity. Their friends, where they live, the clubs they go to, vacations, politics etc. are driven by their choice to follow a sinful pattern. For Christians who make this choice, this means rejecting the Bible (Romans 1 and others) and pursuing homosexual practice.

    While the gay lobby would want you to believe that it is just same sex couples living just like you: house, picket fence, kids etc. Loving, committed, one partner. But that is a lie.

    The homosexual culture is one of promiscuity. Even those “partnered” or “married” normally live for sexual experimentation. Clubs, book stores etc. are the venue for much of these activities. Friends rescued from the lifestyle validate all these things are true.

    But, there is hope for homosexuals. They can be freed from the grip of homosexuality. Examples of this in the Christian Community are Christopher Yuan and Rosaria Butterfield. These both have been in the sin of a homosexual lifestyle and now walk in holiness.

    There are also those who struggle with SSA that choose celibacy. Good examples of this are Wesley Hill (Washed and Waiting), and Sam Allberry (www.livingout.com). These are men who are Christians that know homosexual practice is not God’s will and choose to walk in holiness. Another example, in my Church (Anglican) is Vaughan Roberts. He is a rector that struggles with SSA but has the courage to choose celibacy.

    This is all the truth. This article is not. If you are a person struggling with same sex attraction or one who has given in to the homosexual lifestyle, it is never too late to repent. If you are struggling with unwanted same sex attraction you can find help at this website http://www.parakaleo.ws The owner of the site is a friend who lived the lifestyle for years but, ten years ago, God rescued him from homosexuality, and now he ministers to Christian men who struggle with same sex attraction.

    Don’t struggle alone or think “God just made me this way”. He made you for more than this. Seek help and become the man or woman God made you to be. Don’t settle for false intimacy. It only leads to death.

    I’m sure this will create a firestorm. That’s OK. If one SSA struggler or one who has chosen a homosexual lifestyle gets help, all the hatred and venom is a small price to pay.

    • Never mind that the failure rate of ex-gay ministries is 99%, and they cause an incredible amount of damage ranging from suicide to broken families when a gay person marries straight and then later divorced because they were never made straight. I know–my dad is gay. He tried to be straight for 19 years. He had 4 children who were incredibly damaged by his abuse and hatred of himself.

      You are, as usual, 30 years behind in science and culture. I pray you one day wake up and repent of the body count you caused by your words.

      • You can disagree with me, but the failure rate for legitimate Christian ministries to homosexuals is not 99 percent. I’m certain you have no documentation for that . And 30 years behind the times? Nope. All the people I mention are currently active and working to help SSA individuals find victory and God’s best. Sorry your dad did not get help.

        • I don’t know what the percentage is of any success rate. So far what I know about the ex-gay camp is that they spend a predominant amount of their time struggling with themselves. I saw a friend of mine suffer for years as an ex-gay. He was miserable. He was under a lot of pressure with no success. Yet he claimed victory simply because he hated that part of himself.

          • The various Christian churches are failing quite significantly in their Christian pastoral duties.

            All this yelling of “sin, sin sin” is an excuse to find a way to disobey Jesus’ commandment to love one’s neighbor one’s self.

            Kathy, your words provoked these thoughts which I address to those screaming “it’s sin, it’s sin.”

            What do you think it means to love your LGBTQ neighbor as yourself? Do you call yourself the names you call them? Do you discriminate against yourself as you do them? Do you force yourself into some sort of remedial treatment for a sin of your own, such as avarice, lust, pride, etc as you do them?

            All you want to do is get out of facing up to whatever it is in you that prevents you from loving your neighbor as yourself. It is your responsibility to learn to love every single human being on earth just as you love yourself. Every. Single. Human. Being.

            Get therapy. Get an education. Stop watching Fox News. Become an Episcopalian, if you live in the USA. Come out of the closet.

            No

              • I have been a proud Episcopalian since 1975.

                We have enough sense to know that women know how to take care of our own bodies.

                As for “Biblical marriage” which form did you mean? Sleeping with both your wife and her servant? Polygamy such as David’s or Solomen’s? The kind where you have to buy a wife which you then treat like chattel?

                I ask you these questions because there is no one Biblical definition of marriage and there is no definition that precludes same sex marriage.

                Again, come out of the closet, John, and enjoy the fresh air.

                • The only complaint I have with what you are saying Gloriamarie is that you seep asking John to come out of the closet. It’s just an uncomfortable thing for me as I remember when I didn’t want to be outed so many years ago. Especially if he is ex-gay. I don’t think its necessary either. Even John Pavlovitz has been accused of being gay because he supports same sex marriage. What do you think ?

                • GloriaMarie, Seriously? Jesus says I am the bridegroom and the church is my bride. Israel was the cheating bride and God the husband who delivered her. Hosea is portrayed as the husband who bought back his wife. Symbolic of the marriage vows between God the Father and Isreal his people. Have you never read the book of Hosea? Geeeeez!

        • Behind he times in regard to science–of course the people you mention are actively involved right now, and they will probably quietly come out in a decade like pretty much every other public “ex-gay” figure. Whether they enter into a loving relationship or remain celebrate is up to them.

          Christianity as a whole takes 20-30 years to adjust to culture and scientific discoveries (music may be even father behind). SSA is an old term, not at all correct. Reparative “therapy” is being banned for good reasons–it doesn’t work and causes more harm than good. Here’s a paper to help you understand http://www.drdoughaldeman.com/doc/ScientificExamination.pdf

          Solid numbers as to the failure rate are hard to find, so you’re correct that I can’t solidly point to the data that proves a 99% failure rate. It’s complicated. Many of the “successful” conversions to heterosexuality were actually bisexuals, not homosexuals. Among homosexuals, I couldn’t find any real, successful orientation changes. Behavior changes, sure. But when pushed, those who have changed their behavior are STILL attracted to the same sex and often step out to engage in affairs. Even if they don’t act on their attractions, their orientation has NOT changed.

          If you are happy in ignoring reality, by all means, continue. But keep your mouth shut. I’ve comforted too many moms whose children died because of the ignorance that still pervades well-meaning Christians. The way the church handles LGBT families is a disgrace and it causes death–physical and spiritual. The body count from the ex-gay movement is too high for me to ever believe it’s of God.

          My dad did get help–he married his husband of 30 years and is a completely different human being. He’s peaceful and content. And he knows he will never be welcome in any church, so congratulations on yet another soul pushed from the love of God by your stance.

          • Thank goodness for Dr. Haldeman!

            A friend of mine who calls himself ex-gay tried counselling. He quit early on. He said they were not helping him.

            In his efforts to as he call it ‘kill his desire’ he would swing back and forth through extreme states of anxiety. He tried to kill himself more than once. He was told his anxiety was not related to his sexuality that it must be something else.

            I don’t think his church quite understood the toll it took in his private life. He didn’t have many friends to open up with and listen to his struggle. People would tell him to stop thinking about it.

            Eventually he stopped trusting me because I was accommodating and he said I was being a hindrance to him.

          • Obviously we disagree on this in a fundamental way. And, just to be clear, I never used the term reparative therapy, so please do not accuse me of being a proponent of those specific techniques.
            But your assertion that all who have been rescued from homosexuality and live God’s best life for them will one day reveal them to be a hoax is simply not true.

            I think it comes down to how powerful you think God is. The Scripture says that the same power that raised Jesus from the dead is on offer to believers for change. So how would God be powerless to change those disordered sexuality? I believe God can break any chain. You don’t and that is the crux of our disagreement.

            We could argue forever but, at the end of the day, the proof of the transforming power of God in every situation, is the changed lives I see. Men formerly in the darkness of homosexuality, walking for decades in holiness. Marrying. Having children. Entering into the plan God intended.

            I’m sure the situation with your dad colors your views in a different direction. So be it.

            But I’ll place my trust in a God who can do the impossible, and whose trophies to his grace are changed lives.

            • and John when we don’t change and we are faithful to our calling what then? what trophy do we have in you estimate ? What did we deserve to not be a part of you elite group of healed gays and lesbians?

              I think it’s nice that people are getting married and having families and being honest to themselves and honest with their spouse. It’s great. So why can’t you quit the sales pitch and realize our lives can be happy and complete as well.

              • I’m not sure what you mean that you are faithful to your calling means. If you mean that it is your destiny from God to be gay, I simply do not believe that is true.

                Some will say that there is some gay gene. While I believe some may have a proclivity to leave the normal plan and pursue sinful patterns, that is of the fall and not of creation.

                • No I believe my destiny is to know and walk with my Creator in spirit and truth. Which is what I am doing. That is being faithful to my calling.

                  What you believe about me doesn’t concern me in the least. And I will continue to tell the truth about myself. One of the problems I have with the ex-gay ministry is that it has pushed people into a corner to try and make this a question of life or death, straight or gay, marriage or celibacy, rather than give people the space to be themselves without life threatening questions. The pressure and anxiety and self lathing is what drives people to suicide.

                  I know you ex-gay people hate it when we bring up suicide but I know it to be a direct result of a gay christian feeling they cannot change who they are and having no sense of a future or any hope. And the prospect of marrying someone of the opposite sex has zero interest to them. So those people who are getting matted must have some level of interest in the opposite sex.

                  Please excuse me honestly because I have a difficult time believing it is God healing someone and making them straight. You can believe it all you want and I will give you that but I think it has more to do with the fact that some people have some degree of interest in both sexes. That is why only some people appear to be healed.

                • “that is of the fall and not of creation”

                  …the sad whimpering of the lonely brain checked in at the door. Please go collect it, it is dying out there

                • For the love of Jesus, John, why don’t you STFU already? Your argument (and it is always the same one repeated ad nauseum) is losing credibility with remarkable rapidity. Especially in light of the fact that the word “homosexual” did not appear in English Bibles until the 1880s and it still does not appear in the KJV.

                  The thing you and your ilk do not want to face is that the process of translating the Scriptures was a tortuous endeavor: the original texts were in Hebrew, Aramaic, ad Koine Greek. And the biggest mistake the translators ever made was they started by translating the whole canon into LATIN, a language which had very different words and as such was a poor vehicle for the original writers’s meanings.

    • John, please just come out of the closet. Or get educated.

      Once again I strongly recommend four books. Please read these books before you comment on this post.

      Reasonable and Holy: Engaging Same-Sexuality
      by Tobias Stanislas Haller

      God and the Gay Christian: The Biblical Case in Support of Same-Sex Relationships
      by Matthew Vines

      Same-Sex Unions in Premodern Europe
      by John Boswell

      Christianity, Social Tolerance, and Homosexuality: Gay People in Western Europe from the Beginning of the Christian Era to the Fourteenth Century
      by John Boswell

        • He is not an ex-gay. He has forced himself to be something God did not create him to be. And forced himself back into the closet.

          • Too funny. Do you chronicle his sex life. No, he was a practicing homosexual. Metropolitan Community “Church”, the whole deal. God rescued him. Now he is married with two sons. But of course you would have to discredit him. If you admit his story is true, then you admit you could change

            • God created the man to be gay. He turned his back on God’s beautiful gift. He can’t become heterosexual, he can only pretend. Oh, he may have fooled himself into think he’s turned straight, but that lie will just catch up to him in the future and wreak all sorts of havoc in many ives.

              Why would I have to change? You want me to become a lesbian? I thought you considered that sin.

              Or, if you thought that I am a lesbian from the way I am writing, I am very flattered to be thought so. However, you are guilty of not reading because I have said several times here and in the other discussions that I am straight

    • So IDOJunkMail. When I was growing up, my parents of a much older generation (they would be 100+ if still alive) referred to people who were addicted to drugs as “dope fiends.” This meant that everything that made them culturally and socially human was–of necessity—subordinated, perverted, and overwhelmed by their need for their next “drug fix” and they would do ny fiendish act necessary to get the drug they needed so desperately above all other things in life.

      So, in the life of the homosexual, you see SSA as an analog to an addictive drug. This means that everything that makes homosexuals culturally and socially human is–of necessity—subordinated, perverted, and overwhelmed by the homosexuals need for their next “homosexual sex act,” and they would do any fiendish actions necessary to get the sexually perverted act they needed so desperately above all other things in life—and just like methamphetamine—the craving has become the central core of their existence.

      Am I understanding that correctly—just wondering? Thanks!!!

    • dear John. I appreciate your input. [Before I was a Believer, I believed that ‘anything’ goes. But as a Believer, I think that God made us male/female and marriage is between man/woman. ]

      For arguments sake, lets say that opinion of mine is wrong, and JP’s followers are correct. That still does not address the colossal physical damage & myriad of complications that male/male intercourse entails. Nor does it address the physical/emotional toll of female/female couplings. I guess with modern medicine these concerns are now moot. I care very much about the LGBT youth & their health.

      • ” That still does not address the colossal physical damage & myriad of complications that male/male intercourse entails. Nor does it address the physical/emotional toll of female/female couplings. ”
        Probably because there isn’t much in the way of damage or complications to address, nor is their any negative consequence to female/female couplings. The negativity exists only in the minds of the uneducated and hateful.

        • No actually doctors have pointed out the giant health risks, especially for male homosexuals. For raising the issue, he was fired from his job. The gay lobby won.

          • Interesting comment… especially since you inadvertently revealed you don’t have a valid argument:
            “…doctors have pointed out…”
            Note that the word doctors is plural.
            “For raising the issue, he was fired…”
            Suddenly, all those doctors are a single person! “He” was fired. And for telling lies, “he” should have been.
            One more clue that you don’t know what you are talking about:
            “the giant health risks, especially for male homosexuals. ”
            Especially for male homosexuals suggests giant health risks also exist for lesbians, right? Except that statistically lesbians are one of the healthiest segments of our society. They get far fewer STDs than heterosexuals.
            Again, the negative effects, risks, exist in the warped minds of the ignorant and hateful. Thank you for proving my point.

    • “The homosexual culture is one of promiscuity. Even those “partnered” or “married” normally live for sexual experimentation. Clubs, book stores etc. are the venue for much of these activities. Friends rescued from the lifestyle validate all these things are true.”

      Bullshit. My husband and I have been married for fourteen years and not once has either of us gone looking for sex outside the marriage. Your baseless assumptions about the LGBT community are not only offensive, they are carefully crafted lies created by the extreme right wing of the Church in order to shame people into living lives that would be torture.

      • Yeah Scott, IDoJunkMail brushed off my clarifying question above, but it seemed that what he was saying was way off base compared to anything I have encountered with my gay friends and relatives. Basically, it seemed to me that he was saying tat a gay person’s life is consumed with all-devouring gayness—or some such tommy rot. Perhaps IDoJunkMail is speaking from the perspectives oh his own personal lusts and how they have consumed him at some time in life. However, I have general found that one cannot use their own experiences as a sound basis for understanding how other people perceive their lives and experiences.

      • I never said that there were not faithful homosexual couples, or at least ones that appear to be. Only that the vast majority are focused not on faithfulness, but on experience. You know that is true if you were ever in the homosexual lifestyle before you chose your current one.

        • Why do you think that John? Straight people have just as much propensity to cheat and be unfaithful as gay people although I don’t know how you measure that.

        • “I never said that there were not faithful homosexual couples, or at least ones that appear to be.”

          Define “ones that appear to be.” The more you type the more you poison the air on this blog.

    • Pretty much everything you posted is opinion. No objective information, no demonstrable facts. Same Sex Attraction simply means a person is attracted only to persons of the same sex, with no attraction to the opposite sex. That’s called homosexuality, or being gay. It’s not disordered. It’s a normal variant of sexuality in humans and many hundreds of animal species. The same one God created that in much of His creation.

        • The fall (and you are saying we are born fallen right?) is about our separation from God not how sexuality got messed up. God has been trying to reconcile us to Him. We don’t need to change our sexuality in order t be reconciled to God.

          Even so if we are born this way how can it be wrong. No one is born wrong. In fact I think God sees us a beautiful and unique creations. If I suddenly changed this part of myself tomorrow I would’t be me anymore.

          • And Kathy the truth is, if you woke up one morning and were someone different… God loves you anyway. Broken, reconciled, gay, straight, and everything in between. He loves every single person on this blog, which I find amazing, and personally difficult to do. Our walk with Him is an individual one, with no room for others opinions. Give them no more time about this matter. Go art… Continue your gifts and add beauty to this place.

            • I agree with you. God loves everyone. But that does not mean that he does not define things that are right and wrong. So, it is God’s desire that all would repent and come to faith and embrace His best for him.

              You, I’m sure, see that as hate. But it is loving to desire that men and women be released from the darkness of homosexual practice – cruising for sex, clubs, anonymous sex, all deeds done in darkness. God wants his light to dispel those dark things so man and women can live in the fullness of life.

              • I’ll give you no room to judge me. Your words have nowhere to rest here. My salvation is between me and my Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. And I have one Instructor, the Holy Spirit. Sadly, go speak to someone else.

                • You choose what you want to pay attention to. But, it is not a judgment. God made you for more. His design for your best is different. Believers are called to speak that truth. You do not have to listen if you have hardened your heart toward the Truth.

              • “the darkness of homosexual practice – cruising for sex, clubs, anonymous sex, all deeds done in darkness. ”
                This is either a statement based on gross ignorance of what life is like for the majority of gay people, particularly those who are married, or a statement of your own experience… in which case, you have some serious issues and need help.
                Oh, and as for the “deeds done in darkness,” it’s my understanding that the majority of married people tend to have sex in the dark… you know, at night in their own bedroom.

          • Kathy thank goodness no one is born wrong. Since I was born with a proclivity towards child sex I guess I can just be content with the beautiful way God made me (sarcasm). Please stop trying to justify sin

            • Since pedophilia is more about control than sexual attraction, it’s pretty much understood that nobody is born attracted to children. Those who act out sexually with children are those who feel out of control of their own sexuality, often those who themselves were the victims of abuse. Since nobody is born a victim of sexual abuse or out of control, nobody is born a pedophile.
              That is NOT the case with actual sexual orientation. People are clearly born with an innate sexual orientation, and it is immutable.

        • The only trauma ever endured by gay people was caused by people like you. But trauma cannot and does not alter a person’s sexual orientation. It isn’t possible. (And by the way, that ignorant theory was debunked decades ago.)
          I have news for you about the fall: ALL sexuality was the result of the fall. If man had not fallen, the two original humans could have lived forever, just the two of them, in the garden. Death didn’t come into existence until there was sin. Without death, any procreation by humans or animals would have been a disaster: The earth is not unlimited in size, nor was the garden, as documented in Genesis. Without death, where would all those people and animals have gone?
          http://hoperemains.webs.com/adameve.htm

      • It’s a normal variant of sexuality in humans…

        This is correct because it is derived from sin, just not all are affected in the same manner (variation of sin).

        • If we think about it rationally, ALL sexuality is the result of sin. Think about it: God created two humans and a finite number of animals. Prior to sin, there was no death. The Garden of Eden was an enclosed space, not infinite. In the absence of death, procreation of any kind would have been a recipe for disaster. The rabbits and rats alone would have overrun the place in a matter of weeks!
          In reading Genesis, it’s important to remember it isn’t all chronological. Chapter one gives an overview of the entire process of creation, and does include some elements from after the fall. Chapter two backtracks, and tells the story of the creation of man, the creation of woman, the fall and judgment, in more detail. Even though the command to be fruitful and multiply is found in chapter one, it could not have been given until after the fall, for the reasons stated above: the lack of death made procreation not only unnecessary, but undesirable. Further, man was told to fill the earth… but prior to the fall was confined to the garden, and did not have access to the earth. Again, clearly, the command to procreate came after the fall.
          In reading the judgment God pronounced, it becomes clear that bearing children was part of the curse placed on the woman, and was not part of the original design. So one of the first consequences of sin was death, and thus the need for procreation, and thus the need for sex of any kind. But God, who created the new world order that resulted from sin, not only created heterosexuality to allow procreation, but also homosexuality to prevent overpopulation, which would clearly ensue if the entire population of humans or any animal species reproduced without restraint.

          • Reverend, I’m not buying your BS that sex was only meant to occur after the fall due to the inevitable death of Adam and Eve. That is pure hocus-pocus. Refer to Genesis 1:22 where it says this… And God blessed them, saying, Be fruitful, and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let fowl multiply in the earth. This clearly happened BEFORE man was created. Clearly it was God’s intention of creation multiplying itself. I cannot believe that God would only create two people to “fill the earth” as you have implied.

            • Well, it’s not BS, and I suggest you buy it. Genesis chapter one is a synopsis, an overview of all of creation. It includes the entire creation, and includes elements that took place after the fall. Chapter two goes back and tells the story of the creation of man again, this time in more detail, including the details of the fall. (If you insist on strict chronological order for the first two chapters, you have a problem, because it then appears as if God created man TWICE.)
              It is not possible for the commands of Genesis 1, in regard to humans and animals, to have been given before the fall. God’s original plan was that there would be no death, and that the original two humans and animals would live forever. He placed the humans and animals in an enclosed space, a garden, bounded by four rivers. What would have happened, in the absence of death, if even one species had been reproducing? Rats and rabbits alone would have overrun the place in a matter of months. Further, if you look carefully at the command as it was worded to man, it includes instructions to fill the earth. That would not have been possible before the fall, because they were in the garden with no access to the whole earth. It’s perfectly obvious these commands were given AFTER the fall, when humans and animals were in an empty world, outside the garden, and the existence of death meant replacements were going to be necessary.

    • The only reason homosexuals are premiscuos and have anonymous hook ups ( as many heterosexuals also do ) is because they have been forced into hiding , unable to live openly as their true selves . Any one that has found their “true love and soul mate “, will not be involved in such behavior. I have found such a man . One cannot find this being forced to live in the shadows of church steeples built by those who are present day Pharisees . No one can speak on such things unless they have walked in it and we both have . I have never been able to pray, beg , plead, read or be counseled enough to change who I am. Over this past year, I have come to the conclusion that in order for me to have peace with myself and God , I must accept myself as I am and through doing this I have peace with God . I now want to live and not die.
      I think one two word statement sums it up .
      God knows.

      • Of course heterosexuals are promiscuous, but the data shows that homosexual men have vastly more sexual partners.

        The reason for that is, because they are out of God’s will and design, they will never find fulfillment until they choose either a Godly sexual relationship or celibacy.

        I agree the Church has done a bad job in ministering to homosexuals and ignorance has yielded hate rather than love. That is a tragedy.

    • Horse pucky. I’ll take the compassion and joy of John Pavlovitrz and Gloriamaria anyday over this John’s views. I mean he even admits to “hatred and venom” against gays! Tune him out or otherwise ignore him, he has nothing of substance to add.

      • I never mentioned “hatred and venom”. You obviously have me confused with someone else.
        The main audience here seems to be practicing homosexuals that want the Church to validate that their sin is OK. There is just one problem with that: It is not. God’s word prohibits it.
        The only way “Churches” like John’s can validate and glorify homosexual practice is to jettison the Bible, which he has. Once you do that, it is a free for all, with all kinds of things that are outside God’s will being deemed OK.
        So, if you are going to do things contrary to the Bible, so be it. Just don’t call your self a Christian. God gave his Word for a reason, so He did not give that option.
        I actually have great compassion for same sex strugglers. I know many of them. When they stop fighting and fall into the lifestyle, I never see them do it with joy and confidence, only with resignation and defeat.. It is sad to watch.

        • John, the views you espouse are exactly why I don’t call myself a Christian anymore. I absolutely refuse to be associated with whatever it is that calls itself “Christian” in America today. It is certainly not the Christianity that I grew up with and has little to do with what I understand my spiritual brother Jesus taught, other than using His name to justify their hate and bigotry. And that understanding comes directly from the Bible, even in the lousy translation that is the KJV. By your own faith’s doctrine, anyone’s relationship with Christ is personal, one-on-one, right? Isn’t that the entire basis of salvation, according to your faith? That one must have a personal relationship with Jesus? If so, then who are you to judge another man or woman’s heart? I am not a Roman Catholic because the idea of submitting to a man on Earth in the person of a Pope over the calling of the Holy Spirit is abhorrent to me. If I don’t submit to the Pope, then I’m sure as hell not going to submit to someone who posts comments on this blog. I submit to God alone, as He leads me by the Holy Spirit, by grace through my brother Jesus of Nazareth. My faith walk is mine and I will follow the Holy Spirit wherever it leads, because that is where God wants me to go, whether it’s where you or anyone else wants me to go or not. The Holy Spirit tells me that you are mistaken in your beliefs about those who are LGBTQ. I still choose to follow God, not man.

          • You are free to follow whatever you want. My only point is to point out Biblical truth. You are free to reject the Bible, as most on here seem to have done, especially John.
            But, what you have left is a religion of your own creation, not Christianity. In fact you said you were no longer a Christian. Then what ARE you? Some spiritual, new age, person? Without the Bible, working with the Holy Spirit, faith is worthless. It stands on the wisdom of man, not the truths of God. If that appeals to you, get. But I want no part of such a worldly and false faith.

            • Now you make laugh John. Where did I say I reject the Bible? I do reject the idea that the Bible we have is inerrant, but that is not the same as rejecting the Bible altogether. You call my faith false, but I have experienced miracles in my life, the latest being a beautiful granddaughter born to woman who was told for 24 years that she would be barren for life and who made a surprise entrance on my son’s bathroom floor without the help of single soul, save her mother (who thought she was prolapsing her diseased reproductive organs, not giving birth to a healthy little girl; the pregnancy test was negative). I have had one potato, one onion and one carrot feed 3 very hungry adults, with enough food left over to feed one more because I prayed this simple prayer, “Please, dear God, let there be enough”. I have felt the arms of angels wrap around me when the thought of taking another single breath seemed more than I could bear. How dare you call my faith false! I don’t call myself Christian but I am a lover of God and spiritual sister to Jesus of Nazareth. It is those examples of God’s providence that have kept my faith alive, in spite of the many attempts by churches and “believers” such as yourself to kill it. I will continue to follow the Holy Spirit, not man and especially not some random commenter on a blog. All is well with my soul and I rest easy in the love of God. May you find peace in your walk, however far it may be from mine.

              • I never said your faith was false, just that it was not Christian. You said the same thing. But, if you do not accept the Bible, do not call yourself a Christian etc. you are in some spiritual, metaphysical, new age space. And that is a dangerous place, because salvation is only through Christ.

                • “But I want no part of such a worldly and false faith.” Those are your words, in your reply to me, regarding my faith. “Worldly and false”. Now you try to weasel out of it. My salvation is through Christ, as I have repeatedly stated, but you choose to ignore that and pretend I didn’t say it. And I also said that I do not reject the Bible, I just reject that it is inerrant in it’s every word. I read and study the Bible and pray often throughout the day. My rejection of the label of “Christian” is because of how that label has been twisted and misappropriated by those use it condemn others. My soul is at peace with God, no label needed or wanted.

              • Just remember that those of us who are LGBT and who are followers of Jesus Christ feel the presence of the same Holy Spirit in our lives. To claim otherwise is to commit what is called the unforgiveable sin: blasphemy against the Holy Spirit. No one, absolutely no one, has a lock on God’s Holy Mysteries.

            • It’s ironic that JPs followers strive so ardently to be accepted by bible Believers.

              Why do commenters here crave acceptance from those they hate?

              • Simple. Part of the brokenness of the homosexual is to deeply desire acceptance. So, if they have been a part of the Church, and then move into the lifestyle, they may still want to be part of the Church. So they demand that the Church embrace their sin. Many Churches have fallen for it. But the true Church of Jesus Christ never will.

                • You sound like a broken record: “the lifestyle” “the lifestyle”

                  You fancy yourself some kind of expert on what being gay is all about. The fact is, you don’t have the first clue what you are talking about, but simply repeat the stereotypes and talking points that were fed to you by others.

                  • Exactly Rev Carey.

                    I thank God for the pastors and ministers who are shepherding LGBTQ people back to the church they are doing the work of Christ.

                  • You know nothing about me. I have not chosen a gay lifestyle, true. But have enough SSA friends, both those who live in holiness and those that move in and out of the lifestyle. My good friend, an ex gay that counsels men struggling with SSA. So, it is absurd for you to say I’m ignorant. I’m not. I know what happens that no one wants people to see. Methinks you protest too much.

                    • John, I don’t question the good works people are doing to help those who are struggling with ssa. The key word is help. As long as people are being helped it is good. For those LGBTQ people who are not being helped by your methods we need to step up and encourage them as well not question their faith.

                      I know LGBTQ christians in all situations, ex-gay, celibate and married . I think they are all doing their best to follow Christ.

                      I think the opposition you see here comes down to questioning anyone’s place to say I have the right to tell someone they don’t know God because they can’t change how they feel. I avoid doubting anyone’s faith in God. No matter who they are I encourage them because we don’t know the burden they carry .

                      Keep helping people and keep being helped but lets stop maligning people who don’t fit your ideal template.

                      I thank God for the pastors and ministers who are shepherding LGBTQ people back to the church they are doing the work of Christ, as well.

                    • No, John, you are ignorant. You are ignorant because you persist in believing homosexuality is a lifestyle, rather than simply a sexual orientation. You are ignorant because you persist in believing the myth that there is anyone one earth who was once solely attracted to the same sex, and is now solely attracted to the opposite sex. You are ignorant because you believe people choose to be homosexuals. You are ignorant, and delusional. You do not hold to any factual information about gay people, but cling tenaciously to stereotypes, myths, generalizations and outright lies. And then you have the nerve to characterize all the dishonesty as Christianity. That’s appalling. I know everything I need to about you from the inane things you post. I know you by the fruit you bear.

    • So well said. John is so into defending the LGBTQ community it almost seems he has a fantasy to be LGBTQ. His arguments are based on human reasoning, not the Bible. He tries to say they are based on the Bible, but he only chooses passages that support his predetermined conclusion. And, while he keeps talking about love, he doesn’t love anyone who disagrees with him. Look at his word choice, his adjectives. He is a real hater. He will love you if your LGBTQ or pro LGBTQ, but if you aren’t, the pit bull will be released. He is a walking contradiction of what it means to follow the biblical Jesus. A very sad excuse for a “pastor” with supposed years of ministry “experience.” A psychological analysis of him, based on his blog comments alone, reveals a deeply wounded, vengeful person who enjoys beating others down while all along accusing them of doing what he has mastered. Sick. Unhealthy.

      • I have wondered the same thing myself. He seems to have a unhealthy interest. I don’t think he believes the Bible. I’ve never seen him quote it. And, his church does not believe in sin. His only message is “love” which means tolerate anything and question nothing, even if it violates God’s Word. Very dangerous and leading many astray. he will be held accountable for his false teaching.

        • I’d much rather be John Pavlovitz on the judgment day than you. His message is in keeping with the spirit of the Gospels, the sermon on the mount. You, on the other hand, focus on the letter of the law, and miss the spirit of it entirely. The letter alone kills; the spirit gives life.
          There will be a great many people on that day who adhered to the letter of the Bible, who observed every single word, who were convinced they were right with God… and to them, God will say, “I never knew you.” And of course, it will be true… because they never knew Him. They could quote His word inside out (at least in the flawed versions they had), and adhered to it, but had no real knowledge of God, His unconditional love, His mercy, His forgiveness. They rightly understood that the Bible is a sword, but thought they were supposed to use it to cut down other people… and that’s exactly what they did. And it’s exactly what you do. Honestly, I would not want to stand in your shoes when you stand before God and He asks you why you were so hateful, so judgmental toward others, how you could study the Bible so much and yet miss the whole point, the whole message of God so loved the world.
          It will be devastatingly sad, but not in any way surprising, when the fundamentalist Bible-thumpers so filled with hatred and judgment hear those words “Depart from Me; I never knew you.”

    • Shut you mouth with all your lies. Won’t you go and deal with your demons and leave us alone. We are able to commit to one person, love raise or kids and go to work like you. Unless you are God you have no right to judge. Won’t you start by being celibate yourself. One less fateful person on the world. God knew who I was before he made me, he knew I would struggle for years with being gay b/c of people like you. He helped me accept my self and there is no more struggling.

    • Where do you get your information, sir? I don’t even know where to begin. First, it is not sexual experimentation. Are you only with your partner for sex? LGBTQ people are with people they love, not just want to have sex with. Those who are judgmental of what they don’t understand, came up with SSA. The bible does NOT speak against homosexuality – if you understood the history of what was going on 2000 years ago, you would know that it spoke against homosexual RAPE which was what was done to humiliate and dehumanize others. There IS reference to men who loved other men. And when Jesus came with new laws – where does he speak of homosexuality? And as for ‘conversion therapy’ etc, those who claim they were ‘changed’ or ‘fixed’ usually just gave in to the shame and pressure exerted on them, just as those gay people do who live the ‘heterosexual lifestyle’ because they can’t deal with judgmental, ignorant people like you. Oh – gay conversion does accomplish one thing – a horrifically high rate of suicide for those who attempt it. But perhaps people who think like you do think ‘better dead than gay.’ Do I sound angry – well I am. You and people like you cause the suicides and breakdowns every day of people who can’t fight the hate that you spout. I am the mother of a gay son – I know his heart and soul – he would never judge someone like you who hasn’t walked his path. If you haven’t walked that path don’t make ignorant assumptions about what you don’t understand. And just for the record, my son and his partner are not just ‘sexually experimenting – they love and respect each other, and yes, do have the white picket fence. And my two best friends, who are women who are married, have two amazing children, a loving home, and have been together for 26 years – Sexual experimentation? If you are what Christianity really is, count me out.

      • What a great reply. There is one small thing that would make it better. Change “homosexual rape” to man-on-man rape. Rape has nothing to do with sexuality. Man-on-man rape for the purpose of intimidation, humiliation, and dehumanization was for the most part performed by straight men.

  5. Where does one begin? First to John (not Pavlovitz): The Episcopal Church is not pro-abortion, it is pro-choice. Check the website. My own belief is that until I can get pregnant, I have no say in the issue. That is between a woman and her God. This discussion would be entirely different if men could indeed get pregnant. Most “pro-life” folks are essentially “pro-birth” in their thinking. They do not care what happens after birth takes place. Most are also pro-death penalty. That is pure hypocrisy. If you are truly pro-life, that means from birth through natural death. Swapping the horses for any reason is lacking in moral integrity.

    The Episcopal Church is pro-marriage. The Biblical standard of marriage is not and has never been “one man, one woman.” It has been one man and as many women as he wanted or could afford. All one need do is read Genesis et al. All of the patriarchs had multiple wives and or concubines. The 12 children that became the 12 tribes of Israel were born of three different wives. Polygamy was the norm. Even in the New Testament, per the book of Acts, polygamy was prohibited ONLY for bishops and deacons….no one else. It’s easy to tell who actually reads Scripture by the way they “quote” it.
    I would add to the notations of others that the authors of the current canon of Scripture believed that the world was flat and that it was the center of the universe and the sun and all planets and stars revolved around the earth. Do you still believe that? I doubt it. There is scientific proof that such is not the case. I am a biologist by training and I believe in evolution. I also believe in what has come to be called “creationism.” The stories (there isn’t just one in Genesis) are the narrative. Evolution is God’s mechanism. God’s 7 days could have been thousands of our currently defined years long each. What does it matter anyway? God created. The reason doesn’t matter. It is one of the many mysteries of faith in God.
    As far as my “lifestyle” is concerned: I get up, brush my teeth, shave, shower, get dressed, pray my daily prayers, walk my dog, maybe clean house or do laundry, maybe go shopping, watch TV, read, eat, do the dishes, do the laundry, sometimes see a movie or play, go to church every Sunday, etc. etc. etc. I would bet that is about as boring as any non-LGBT person’s life. I happen to be gay. Gay is not my lifestyle. Gay is part of my identity as a child of God. I know from direct interaction with God that God doesn’t have a problem with who I am. The Holy Spirit acts in my life all the time. (Now if you truly take Scripture literally and you deny that, you have committed the unforgivable sin: blasphemy against the Holy Spirit.)
    Let me close with a request that you truly get to know some average LGBT folks. They are your neighbors. They shop at the same grocery store. Get to know them as human beings, not as issues. You have placed a label over their faces and in doing so you have sought to blot out the face of a child of God. Peel away the label and get to know the person.
    If you cannot just let folks live their lives at least be quiet. Your voice and others like it are behind bullying, suicides and the fact that LGBT teens have a much higher suicide/attempted suicide rate that the general population. How will you explain to God why you mistreated God’s children? God told all of us to love each other as we love ourselves. That was second only to loving God. As Jesus quoted: All the rest of the law and the prophets hang on those commandments.

    • Bruce you said “As far as my “lifestyle” is concerned: I get up, brush my teeth, shave, shower, get dressed, pray my daily prayers, walk my dog, maybe clean house or do laundry, maybe go shopping, watch TV, read, eat, do the dishes, do the laundry, sometimes see a movie or play, go to church every Sunday, etc. etc. etc. ”

      Wonderful comment! Sometimes I call my gay friend and ask him what he is doing and he will say ” Oh I am living the gay lifestyle, doing my laundry”

    • Really? You honestly believe if you can’t get pregnant than you can’t have an opinion on the morality of elective abortion? What a huge cop out. I don’t need a uterus to know that destroying a human life purely for convenience is morally indefensible, and believing that every abortion is medically necessary is staggeringly naive. Consensual sex can have very obvious consequences, and killing an unborn child is a reprehensible way of dealing with them.

      As for capital punishment, a human can absolutely depraved enough to forfeit their right to continue living. An unborn child is innocent of everything. That you can’t see the distinction is remarkable.

      • What say you to the law passed in Indiana that says if a woman knows that the embryo implanted in her uterus is genetically flawed, i.e. will assuredly have some sort of disability or lifelong medical condition that she may NOT obtain an abortion? Is that right? Keep in mind that there is no help for these women included in the law. That same law says that all “fetal remains” must be buried or cremated. Are women now supposed to inspect every blood clot produced during menses to make sure that there are no “fetal remains” being accidentally flushed down the toilet? And that is not counting the untold suffering endured by both woman and child if this law were to stand and that birth occurs. Do you also oppose Obamacare, resulting in that woman not having access to the medical and psychiatric care she would need to properly raise that child? There are no laws that I know of governing a man’s reproductive organs, unless one considers law against rape as governing only male genitalia, which the law does not do (women can and have been found guilty of rape, though it is rather rare). Your body is yours and my body is mine. If you insist on controlling some aspects of my body, what aspects of your body are you willing to give to women to control?

        • All life is sacred so abortion for any reason is morally wrong for a Christian. By the same logic, capital punishment and euthanasia are wrong.

          It is simple: Value life. Why? Because God does.

        • I don’t deny that there is a gray area in the abortion debate. My objection is to ending a human life simply because you find it inconvenient, which happens more than pro-choice folks are willing to admit. There are certainly instances, in my opinion anyway, where abortion is not morally indefensible, and indeed necessary, and for that reason I would not support a law that bans the practice in it’s entirety. Terminating a pregnancy because the child would require extensive medical attention, though, is not one of those situations. Where on the spectrum of disabilities do you draw a line and say anyone on the other side of it would be better off dead?

          I don’t want to control your body. I suppose that might drive a small segment of the pro-life movement, but I think that argument is usually employed because people don’t want to argue the morality of ending an innocent human life. My problem is using abortion as birth control. Consequence free sex is not a human right, and we all know where babies come from. My body is mine, and your body is yours, but if you get pregnant, the body of the child that you’ve created isn’t yours. I have no desire to control your body, but if you made the choice to have sex, I do believe you should deal with the obvious consequences of your decision in a manner other than killing the unborn baby.

          I’m not going to argue the merits of the Affordable Care Act. It has it’s pros and cons. I don’t accept that it is the only thing that provides medical care to children with disabilities, though. That notion is ludicrous.

          As far as the fetal remains issue, you seem to be conflating natural miscarriage with abortion. I seriously doubt anyone who voted for the law expects a formerly expecting mother to inspect the products of an active miscarriage for fetal remains, though my wife has actually done that, because she could not stand the thought of flushing our unborn child down the toilet.

          • Patricia, if you read my post carefully, it was not a conflation, it was a deliberate choice in terminology precisely because the two cases are only differentiated by what proceeds the word abortion; either medical or spontaneous. Further research has confirmed that miscarriage is included in the bill in question, Indiana House Bill 1337 which reads in part: “Provides that a miscarried or aborted fetus must be interred or cremated by a facility having possession of the remains. Requires a person or facility having possession of a miscarried or aborted fetus to ensure that the miscarried fetus or aborted fetus is preserved until final disposition occurs. ” My comment about blood clots is one Hoosier women would actually have to deal with if this law stands. Not only is does this law gut Roe vs Wade, it actually imposes restrictions on women not ever in effect before. And the governor who signed it into law is Mike Pence.

            • Sorry, not sure how the entire post got here, but I was going to post the quote from the law for you anyway, Bruton. And as one can see, yes they absolutely did expect women to do those exact inspections.

            • I wasn’t replying to you, I was replying to Bruton’s and using his verbiage. I don’t remember exactly what I said, I can’t find the comment, but I like to do reflect people’s language choices back to them. I was actually hoping to be supportive of you. I’m sorry if I missed the mark.

              Thank you for your further description of this bill. I find it amazing that this kind of stupidity is visited upon women.

              • No worries Patricia. 🙂 I thought the info might useful to others reading this and your comment gave me opportunity to address it. That we are still fighting for our rights is ludicrous, let alone the retreat into subjugation that this law represents. Pence is a Dominionist or at least leans that way. He was often seen with Michelle “Batshit” Bachman (R-WI) when they were both in Congress. Many Dominionists, but not all (I have no info on Pence), believe that the USA should be ruled under OT Biblical law, but of course they pick and choose which parts, as always. If they can demand to inspect the product of our menses, is it really that big of step to declare us “unclean”? I think one reason the extremists hate Islam so much is pure envy. They can only dream of the days when women and children were chattel and the toys of men.

            • Well, that’s stupid law then. Pretty much on par with one party control over government.
              1.) Get elected.
              2.) Run way to far to your ideological extreme.
              3.) Get voted out of office.
              4.) Watch opposing party make identical mistake.
              5.) Return to Step 1.

            • A bad law doesn’t change my position on elected abortion, though. If you choose to have sex and get pregnant as a result, own up to the consequences and don’t kill the kid. That’s the epitome of cowardice.

              As to the “life long medical condition,” how disabled can an unborn baby be before we can decide we should kill it for it’s own good? You ignored that part. As I asked Bruce, what happens if a genetic marker for homosexuality is discovered that can be tested for in utero? That’s a life long condition. Are you good with parents aborting a viable unborn child just because they don’t want a gay kid? Because you know full well it would happen.

              • There is such a thing a quality of life, though a public forum on the internet is not the place for such a discussion and is not the issue at hand. A woman’s right to terminate a pregnancy prior to viability was established in Roe vs Wade and modified by Planned Parenthood vs Casey to under 20 weeks. A woman’s reason for seeking that procedure is a matter between her and her doctor, not her, the doctor and the whole damn internet. Roe vs Wade was decided on precisely those grounds; the 14th amendment. You know, the one ensures our right to privacy. unless you’re a woman, of course.

                • You’re the one that raised quality of life as a legit reason to get an abortion, hence you made it an issue. You seem to think I’m disputing the legality of elective abortion, rather than the morality of it. Or you’d rather not argue the morality of ending an innocent human life for no medically necessary reason, because you know deep down that you can’t really make that argument. Ergo, “PRIVACY!”

                  It’s not a difficult concept. If you don’t want the responsibility of being a parent, do not willingly engage in activities that everyone knows can result in children.

                  • Do you really expect me to believe that you oppose elective abortion on moral grounds and yet support its legality as well? That is not at all evident in your posts. You said that you do not support a complete ban on abortion, but you want to dictate the terms to the woman making the decision. That is subjugation, by definition. Is that where you want women to be?
                    I raised quality of life as a factor that a mother might consider, as is her right. My former sister-in-law gave her life to her two disabled children, one for the 22 years of his life and 47 years now with her daughter. The toll on her life and health is tragic as is most of her daughter’s life. A woman should not be forced to accept a life sentence because of a single night of sex. And we both know it’s only the woman who is called to give up her life like that; the father is freed from all obligations other than money. Unless he wants to contribute more, he can set up an automatic payment for the support and walk away.
                    I’m tired of being forced to fight this same fight, over and over. I’m damned tired of women being denied choice. I’m tired of a woman’s morality being the subject of public scrutiny and ridicule, while rapists only get 6 months in county lock-up. I’m tired of men who like sex being called studs and women who like sex being called sluts and whores. I’m tired of the misogyny disguised as religion and peddled as righteousness.
                    Margaret Atwood’s “The Handmaid’s Tale” is supposed to be cautionary one, not a damned playbook.

                    • It is entirely possible to object to elective abortion on moral grounds and still accept that it’s legal, and always will be. You can also disagree with it and still agree you can’t ban it outright, as there are conditions, such as ectopic pregnancies, where if left alone will be fatal to both mother and child. It’s entirely consistent to not support elective abortion and still believe it can be medically necessary. Again, not that difficult to grasp.

                      You find me disagreeing about fathers who abandon their kids. It’s a huge problem. Probably one of the biggest we face in this country. Fatherless children are something like eight times more likely to end up in prison than kids from a two parent household. Poverty numbers are similar. It’s a bigger predictor of criminality or poverty than any other factor. None of that changes the fact that you know going in what sex can lead to. Even just one night of it. You want choice? You made it when you opted to hop into bed with someone. Own up to it. Man or woman.

                    • You don’t even have to raise it. There are literally thousands and thousands of couples looking to adopt. If you’re so worried about a child screwing up your lifestyle, give it to a family who desperately wants one themselves but can’t naturally. Just don’t kill it.

                    • You are very uninformed about abortion. First, abortion is almost never medical. It is for convenience. Birth control. And the “don’t tell me what to do with my body” garbage is really ridiculous. There is another human involved. You a KILLING. For your convenience. Meanwhile, there are MILLIONS wanting to adopt the child you throw in the trash can. No Christian can, in good conscience, support abortion. It takes life. And God values life.

      • Yes, Norm I said that and I believe it. Find me something about abortion in Scripture. It isn’t there. But there is a Psalm that speaks of bashing the heads of our enemies’ babies against rocks in a stream and supports that. Do you follow that policy? Those are living children. Are you aware that at about 12 weeks or so it is not possible to distinguish between any number of embryo’s which is human? I return to my earlier thought: If we had a modicum of concern about preventing unwanted pregnancies, if men took their part in being responsible for creating, supporting and raising children, many of these issues would not be issues. Should we not consider the quality of life as well as life itself? Should we not see whether the outcome will honor God or will it only honor our rigid dogmatic ego’s?

        Let’s not be upholding Scripture as a handbook for being human. It is a collection of narratives. I do believe it was inspired by God. Did God “dictate” it to a scribe? No. What we now have began as oral narratives, only to be committed to writing years later. The original languages do not always translate into English equivalents. These original languages are no longer spoken. A good example is what gets incorrectly translated as Jesus telling Nicodemus that he must be “born again.” That is not accurate. The closest English equivalent is to be “born from above.”

        Any translation that uses the term “homosexual” is in error. There was no such word until the early 1900’s or so.
        Scripture is contextual. For it to have value to us, each narrative must be kept in the context of the time and culture of its writing. It must be kept in the context of the larger story of which it is a part as well. Very, very few passages can stand alone without context. The few I can think of are: Love God. Love your neighbor as yourself. God is love (in some translations).

        • Find me something in scripture about drinking and driving. If we are going to limit what is illegal strictly to what is mentioned in the bible, there is a lot that’s fair game. I realize that DUI is not something that people were familiar with when Moses was leading his people to the promised land. Neither were ultrasounds or genetic testing, though, so none of the Israelites were aborting children because they would have had birth defects. If someday scientists discover a genetic marker for homosexuality that can be tested for in utero, would you be fine with someone aborting the pregnancy because they don’t want gay offspring? The answer, of course, is no, you would be whole heartedly against it. Nothing in the bible prohibits it, though.

          Yes, I’m aware that in early development a human looks similar to other vertebrates. Haeckel’s embryos and all that. So what? A human embryo might look like another species at the same stage of development, but there is still a 0.0% chance that embryo grows up to be a polar bear, or a crocodile. Are you suggesting that abortion should be OK because at some stage of development humans can’t be distinguished from animals by the naked eye? That’s an argument I had not heard. Probably for good reason.

          Also, please provide an example of an elective abortion that honors God.

          • Abortion never honors God. And is in the Bible: “thou shall not kill”. Abortion always grieves God because He is the author of the human potential snuffed out

            • Apparently God killed David and Bathsheba’s firstborn in the womb. I know there are apologetics written about it but it still doesn’t make sense. I am not sure I believe God had anything to do with that at all.

                • I guess my point Tim was that the child was innocent and the story says God aborted him or her. Seems to contradict Gods character.

                  • Couldn’t that be said about every miscarriage ever? If you believe in an all powerful God, then you have to admit there are things about Him that you are incapable of understanding, including why things happen the way they do here on earth.

                    • True, but that doesn’t mean we can make assumptions about God just because we think he can do anything and everything.

                      Perhaps David and Bathsheba’s unborn child was a miscarriage and David in his guilt thought God punished him. That would mean David didn’t fully understand God and he was wrong to think that God caused the death of his unborn child..

                      One of the things we understand about people in ancient times was that they thought less of their ability to effect outcomes and believed everything that happened was controlled spiritually. This could explain a lot of the conflict between the recorded behaviour of God of the Old Testament and Jesus in the New Testament. How much of the things that Israel did was not God at all but was their own doing?

                      It’s a question I have. I guess I doubt human beings more than I doubt God’s character.

  6. These days I think people know better. I think they know it’s not a lifestyle choice. Perhaps to them it’s a dig or a way to make us feel bad.

    • Well, Down South here, you are a Christian if you drink Coca-Cola, and you cannot possibly be a Christian if you drink Pepsi.

      Now, that might sound shallow—incredibly shallow—but if you were a market research analyst filling out questionaires for church members all over the American South, I can pretty much guarantee that many of the real answers from church members are going to be a whole lot more shallow than my answer above.

  7. I grew up in an evangelical church. We were taught that “Man is saved by grace alone.” Then they proceeded to list all the examples of a how a Christian should exhibit their salvation—it was page after page of “Thou shalt not’s.” There were the usual no smoking, no alcohol, and such, but it also included no movies, no dancing, no mixed swimming, no card playing (they believed poker style cards were of the devil), women couldn’t wear pants, or makeup, or jewelry other than a marriage ring, and bizarre stuff like no carnivals! You can imagine how they felt about gays! Then, when the pastor’s son came out, not only was he ostricized by the church, but his own parants rejected him. These pious, self rightous narrow minded idiots could not see the beauty within this wonderful child of God and he left the area for “anywhere else.” Ever since, I have rejected ANY suggestion that being gay is abnormal or wrong. I am hetro, but I attend gay pride to show solidarity.

    • Christian fundamentalist and conservative evangelical faith in action. What a powerful witness for Jesus!!!! As I once read somewhere, the primary purpose of the fundie Christian is to search the world to determine whether someone is smiling, laughing, and having fun—a stamp that joyful fire out as quickly as possible.

  8. Just a thought. What are we going to do? When is us judgmental Christians go to heaven? When we “worship in Spirit and truth”? When we are love? When no genitalia or orientation hinders us? Will you dare call me a condemned sinner then? Will you dare take your eye away from Him to cast a stone? One of these days I will be ex human. What will you “label” my love then? Well why on earth would you bother now?

  9. I know a young man that when asked about why he ascribes to the homosexual lifestyle his answer was this. He said that he wanted to be recognized by the elite of this world. When asked about being recognized by God instead he said that he didn’t care about God at all. That is and was his choice. The downside to this choice is that he is forced to live this lifestyle of degradation and humiliation much like a puppet performing for a audience of elites to prove his worth to the elites, whoever they may be. I feel sorry for anyone who makes this trade.

    • Step back from the crack pipe. Seriously, you are basing your opinion on that of someone who was most likely playing you like a fiddle?

  10. Hi John, I’ve noticed a lot of your posts on the Christian bloggers network are all about this subject. I just thought I would drop by to actually read one of your blogs.

    I think you are actually correct in that this is a core part of who a person is. But I only agree with that to the point that we are talking about a person who has not been born again. The reason is because there is a difference between the flesh of a person and their soul.

    Here, let me give you a link to something I wrote which explains this. http://onthelineministries.com/struggling-sinning-saved/

    Now, I believe (as I already know you disagree with) that homosexuality is a sin according to the Bible. But here is the thing…we ARE born with the ability to be TEMPTED to sin. Everyone has their own vice. So at our core if we look at ourselves as being flesh then yes, it is a part of us since our flesh core is full of sin.

    But we don’t have to consider ourselves as being a part of that old flesh any longer.

  11. Respectfully Jason, this is just another way of spreading the doctrine of total depravity right?

    Many of us have been down this road of struggling and denying ourselves our true emotions and feelings. It has harmed so many people’s ability to thrive in life and to love. Loving someone and expressing that love physically is not a sin.

    • No Romans 1 is talking about sexual excess and a lifestyle of debauchery it is not specific to just a certain group of people. Straight people are the majority John.

  12. Every Biblical scholar of any repute disagrees. The revisionist thinking you embrace is just a poor attempt to distort the Bible to support sin.

    • I can tell you this when I read Romans 1 for the first time I was a teenager. I wasn’t indoctrinated in a church. I never heard about homosexuality. My mom made sure I was confirmed at 13. It involved memorizing the creeds and other things. I didn’t want to go because we never went to church but mom felt it was imperative I follow this tradition. It would take a few weeks of meeting with the priest after school and then a ceremony. I was given a gift Bible. It sat on my bookshelf in my room until I picked it up and started reading it. I wasn’t reading any commentaries and I didn’t even know Biblical Scholars existed. One thing I did know, was common sense, Romans 1 wasn’t talking about me. I hadn’t made any decision to go against my nature or reject God. I was detached from what was being described in Romans 1 and felt I had been introduced to something I was not familiar with and a world that was foreign to me. Kind of like when I watched the witch give the poisoned apple to Snow White and l covered my eyes in fear.

      I did not see any connection between Romans 1:26 and my crush on a girl. Those two things did not look similar to me.

      Every negative thing about about being gay came from what I was told not what I thought. It was people’s condemning and hurtful words that turned innocent crushes into shameful feelings that caused me anxiety where anxiety never existed before.

      Making Romans 1 into this big indictment of a small group of people, who are overlooked in the Bible is the twisted view. It was a larger world Paul was describing. He wasn’t pointing to the gays and blaming them as some sort of end result of godlessness… that is the prejudiced view. So I wonder who is really distorting things here? It seems we can’t get our minds out of the gutter when it comes to LGBTQ people.

      Because your lifestyle is our lifestyle. We come from all walks of life in all segments of society even from evangelical homes which homeschool their children.So it doesn’t seem to matter how we are raised either.

    • Repute according to whom? The Evangelical consensus? IV Press? Zondervan? I remember being a slave to the thoughts of those “scholars of any repute”. Scholars can be popular and be wrong. John, you aren’t going to win any converts here. And any kids reading these blogs and receiving the hope they so desperately need will be wounded by your words. If the fruits of what you are preaching here are not concerning to you, I doubt you have any love of Christ in you. What fruits, do you ask? Death. Both physical and spiritual. Homelessness. Depression. Self-hatred. Exclusion. Broken families. Tell me, are those fruits of the Spirit? How do they compare? Every time a teen kills themselves for being LGBT, you are at fault. You have blood on your hands. I’ve repented of that, turned my life the opposite direction. You haven’t.

      • Repute meaning men who have dedicated their lives to studying the Bible. Versus Matthew Vines, a college dropout who desperately wants the Church to validate his sin. The true church never will.

        You can say the blood of gay teens is on my hands. That does not make it so. Those that get help for sexual disorder generally do not commit suicide. It is those that get sucked into the darkness of homosexuality. The things they do cannot be reconciled with what they know is right and God’s best. That conflict is a tragedy. I will there were more people ministering to young people to right their sexuality.

        There is also a giant crisis of fatherlessness in America, particularly for young men. Absent fathers encourage young men to seek intimacy where they can find it. A sad thing.

        • False. So very false. I’m in a group of Christian moms of LGBT kids. Yes, my daughter is a lesbian. I can’t tell you how many deaths I’ve heard about of kids who sought to change though various ministries only to fall into despair when God didn’t change them. Some resort to suicide, most leave any sort of faith behind (and spare me the idea that their ministry wasn’t Spirit filled enough–I come from a very deep charismatic background, affiliated with Bethel). Their blood is indeed on the hands of those who promised that God would “heal” them.

          My child was raised in a loving, supportive, typical charismatic evangelical home. And she’s gay. Her dad is very present, as am I. She has NONE of the typical Christian ex-gay ministry excuses that “cause” homosexuality. None. Nada. I spent a year worrying about why she was crying all night, why she seemed to be carrying a heavy burden. When she finally came out to me, it was such a vulnerable, holy moment. One Holy Spirit had been preparing me for without my knowledge. She has my support, and once she knew she was safe, her demeanor changed to one of joy and relief. People like you have made sure she knows she’s not welcome in most churches, and she’s keenly aware of that. Her dad and I give her hope that God still adores her and has a plan for her.

          So, please, back off. You have no authority here. My words still stand–you are killing kids.

          • There are many reasons for sexual brokenness. It is a result of the fall.

            You, apparently, worship a different God than I do. I think God can do things that to men and women seem impossible. You, obviously, do not.

            I have Christian friends that have “gay” and “transgender” friends. So, I know some of the heartbreak of that.

            But, when the Church bows to every whim of popular culture, they no longer are the Church. Uff God’s Word is clear on an issue, to reject that teaching is to move into a slippery slope where “anything goes”.

            But, I do not apologise for standing for Biblical truth. And I am not responsible for the things you accuse. It is possible for a Church to be both welcoming to same sex strugglers AND faithful.

              • And, John, I am talking to you personally. All the study of scriptures will not help you if you do not recognize or understand a merciful, loving God. EGO….Easing God Out. Check your ego, it s destroyingng your humaneness.

                • Excuse me. You fundies talking about someone having a big ego is like Heinrich Himmler chastising little Jimmy for setting his dog on fire with gasoline and a match. It makes you look just as silly as you are.

            • Wait a minute. Wait just one minute. You have “friends” who have gay and transgender friends? What about you? Do you have any gay and transgender friends—and if not—why not? I and just about everyone I know has gay or transgender friends. Keeping them at a distance for fear that you might let go to your cravings?

            • Can’t believe I’m answering yet again, but here goes. John, you have no clue who I am, and to say that I “obviously” don’t believe in a God of miracles is ridiculous. I live a life of miracles and walk in a prophetic gift. I’ve seen God do amazing healings, and I’ve also seen Him not heal others. That is not the issue at hand. I’m living in a miracle right now as I build a retreat in Maui where pastors and missionaries and human aid workers and their families can come and have time to heal, spend time in God’s presence and be with their families.

              Overwhelmingly, God is not changing sexual orientation in people. Here’s just one story among many https://justbecausehebreathes.com/about/. The end of Exodus International blew the doors wide open and brought to the surface the fact that God wasn’t changing anyone. It’s simple fact. So we need to wonder why? Why isn’t God changing sexual orientation? You can continue to pray that He does, but in reality, He isn’t. Applying Occom’s Razor, the simplest answer is that He doesn’t see it as something to fix. And when I read stories of LGBT Christians who have finally come to terms with the fact that God loves them as they are (after years of crying out to Him for change), they are at peace. They show the fruit of the Spirit as they live out their faith as God wants them to.

              I’m not sure how much more simply I can explain this.

          • I have to agree Amy. The fundies would say that the wages of homosexual sin are death—so why be surprised. The thing they do not understand is that they—the fundies—are the ones who are killing these children—and the wages of their sin will be their own death one day.

          • Thank you Amy for sharing your story. It is with joy I read of your support for your daughter. Most evangelicals seem to think it more important to tell them they are going to hell for being who they are and want to “save” them by changing them. My response is always the same. The bible endorses slavery, polygamy, and killing left handed people—why aren’t we doing that today? The bible contains errors, like the sun revolving around the earth (Copernicus was condemned for suggesting otherwise and Gallieo was imprisoned for inventing a telescope that proved the earth revolved aroung the sun!) I see signs all over the place showing the ten commandments, but no one talks about the other 600 + laws laid out in the old testement. Why do we not follow them? I read this blog b/c John P. stresses compassion to all and love of your neighbor. The other John reminds me of the judgemental, narrow minded christians I grew up around.

        • What ignorance and hubris! The only gay teens who commit suicide are those who live in fear caused by people like you. Those who embrace the truth of their sexuality and who can reconcile that with their faith do not commit suicide.
          I spent decades trying to help men and women who had tried to change their sexual orientation, who tried to live as heterosexuals, to make people like you happy. (Actually, they though they were doing what God wanted, but that wasn’t the case at all.) Those people were depressed, often suicidal, sometimes trapped in sham heterosexual marriages, and miserably unhappy. Many had lost faith in God and left the church. That was what listening to ignorant, homophobic Christians had earned them. For those we were able to help, when they were able to accept themselves as they are, embrace their sexual orientation as one part of who they are, as part of God’s plan, and were able to understand that God loves and accepts them as they are, they were able to live happy, productive, active lives… active in society and active in their churches. Then, and only then, did they find the joy that is supposed to be part of the Christian heritage.

          • Should we really be surprised at this Rev. Carey? Christian fundamentalism and conservative evangelicalism have a long, long, long history of wallowing in factual ignorance and holding such factual ignorance up high as a universal value to be emulated. It started with their rejection of Charles Darwin and evolution. It continued with the rejection of cultural and historical studies of ancient Middle Eastern cultures to better understand the meaning and context of holy scripture. It moved on to opposing the right of women to vote. It moved on to prohibition of alcoholic beverages—with their false claim that such beverages are forbidden in scripture—and they quickly found out that banning such beverages just creates an enormous black market that undermines and destroys the whole attempt. Nowadays we hear that the Earth is only 5,000 years old—in contravention to geology. The big bang never occurred at the beginning of our 4-dimensional universe, and George Custer and Joe McCarthy were great American heroes who should be honored by all American school children.

            If you show a fundie a blue sofa cushion—and the Bible says it is really a red sofa cushion—the fundie believes the Bible even when he can plainly see with his own eyes that the cushion is actually blue. This is how they operate—and it is going to eventually destroy every last shred of credibility they have anywhere in American society and culture—because what they are doing is just plain nonsense—and most people know that and see that—especially their own children when they reach about 18 years old, see the travesty of it all, and exit the fundie faith tradition—and they are right to exit such nonsense.

            These same fundie people will rush to believe any lie someone throws at them. Huge numbers of them believe in outlandish conspiracy theories. Nearly every current event that happens in the Middle East is a harbinger of the end times and the end of the world.

            I still think Frank Schaeffer said it all best, and I hope Mark and IDoJunkMail can watch the video below one more time—because this truth from Frank is WHY your fundie religious tradition is dying and why it will eventually cease to exist anywhere on Earth—not because the world is wicked—-but because you fundies have an inability to recognize that factual truth is also God’s truth. Here is the safe video link:

  13. “There is no such thing as a heterosexual lifestyle.
    There is no such thing as a homosexual lifestyle.
    There are only lives.”

    Thank you in particular for this comment. I’m not going to sit and condemn those who happen to live their lives differently from me. I have friends who are Christians but they don’t try and convert me, nor I them. We have respect for each other’s beliefs (or in my case lack of). Heck, I even attended their baby’s baptism recently.

    I also have gay friends. So what? They’re just friends who happen to also be gay. Big freaking woop! I don’t care that they sleep with people of the same gender any more than I care that other people sleep with those of the opposite gender. It’s not my right to judge them for that.

    • The judge is not you. The Bible says it is sin. If you are not a follower of Christ, then just ignore the Bible and say nothing. Christians are called to love people enough to encourage them to repentance.

      • The judge is also not you. And believe it or not, the true Judge will not consult you for which particular translation of His word you think is authoritative. In fact, He isn’t going to judge anyone based on the errors that abound in vernacular Bible translations.
        Any judgment He does will be based on what He actually said, which is best reflected in the Hebrew and Greek texts, which we still have. They do NOT say it is a sin. Can you really think He will treat it as one just because flawed translations of the last four centuries have increasingly called it one? (I say increasingly because there is far more blatant anti-homosexual sentiment in the newer versions than in the older ones.)
        http://hoperemains.webs.com

        • I appreciate your perspective and your compassion Rev. Carey but how can there be any correct translation? Even the original version was filtered through human minds. Beautiful, well-meaning but imperfect and biased human minds.

          The only thing that needs no translation, no lifelong dedication to study is Love. We are born recognizing it. Our greatest accomplishment in this life is to be giver and recipient.

          Studying is for learning how to do something useful, to improve our quality of life. Not for shaming, demeaning or placing ourselves in higher standing with God or some perceived scholarly hierarchy. Arguing about biblical translations is a deterrent and a distraction to its intended purpose. The message is Love, isn’t it? So shouldn’t our greatest concern be not “who did what, when, where or why” but how to nurture and be Love for others?

          • There can indeed be correct translations of the oldest extant manuscripts. Whether the original manuscripts, long lost, were inerrant or not isn’t really relevant to that. The fact is, people believe the Bible is important. Without it, we wouldn’t even know of the command to love each other.
            Correct translation is important to those who value truth above tradition and prejudice. Certainly, love is essential… but that doesn’t necessitate throwing away the Bible or giving up all effort to determine as accurately as possible what was originally written.

  14. My heart is down around my knees right now and you are without a doubt, incredibly, wonderfully made for such a time as this! I am speechless at the unridiculously impeccable timing of this piece. Heaped up and overflowing with grief and yet kindled by the flame of passion with which this was written. I love you and yours without measure and almost cannot believe how incredibly blessed for you in my life.

  15. Sigh. What a food fight. Rev. Carey, thank you for your compassionate and grounded commentary.

    I a while ago I was introduced to a term that the American black community frequently uses to describe gay people: “same-gender-loving”.

    I find it a more subtle description that returns our focus to the heart of the matter: our hearts, and what our hearts always long to do: love, and be loved in return.

    The world did not stop evolving 2 millenia ago; the universe that God created still has much to reveal to us – if we are willing to still be taught.

  16. The original subject of the John Pavlovitz post is whether or not there is such a thing as the “homosexual lifestyle.” I suppose a person could consciously build a lifestyle around anything—if they put their heads to it—even a bottle of ketchup. I suspect that a few people in the gay community might have done this or something close to it. In particular, I am thinking about the few young gay men who don a black bra and a garter belt and prance down the street in them—and their whole lives revolve around their local gay nightclub and who their next homosexual conquest will be. I have had a couple of heterosexual friends who had there own version of this going in their lives—and for them it was a lifestyle. I think IDoJunkMail, Mark, and others are using the actions of this small minority of gay people to stereotype and smear the entire gay population of the United States with this “gay lifestyle” label—and it is a label—a consciously used propaganda tool dreamed up by Christian fundamentalists and conservative evangelicals to smear people they view as the enemies of God and thus their own enemies.

    The truth and fact of the matter is that I have only known a couple of people that could possibly have been accurately characterized as having a gay “lifestyle.” However, every statistical population cohort you might define (e.g., girls who like cherry lollipops) is going to have a corner populated by a couple of oddball deviants. Using these two oddball deviants to smear all girls who like cherry lollipops is both wrong and a grave injustice. Most of the gay people I have known were just normal people with a normal lifestyle like most other Americans.

    Therefore, the fact we most need to understand is that the term “gay lifestyle” is a hate term like the “n-word.” It was manufactured by PR-oriented Christian fundamentalists and conservative evangelicals to label people—people they despise and hate in the name of Jesus. It was designed as a smear tactic, and it is used as a smear tactic. Those who designed this label handed it off to fundie pew sitters who willingly and unthinkingly accepted it. This hand off—most likely by pastoral repetition—allowed whole fundie congregations to learn the unique language of LGBTQ hate and to join into the hate fest—again in the name of Jesus. A good way for the American people to deal with this is to understand how the term “gay lifestyle” is being used as a PR hate term. If someone uses it in a conversation with you, and this is especially true if you are a boss at work or a person who is in any other leadership position over others in our society and culture. You would not allow an employee of yours to come into your office and curse like a sailor, so why would you allow them to engage in hate speech in your office. Just say this to them:

    “Excuse me. The term “gay lifestyle” is a PR hate term like the “n-word.” I do not allow my employees or subordinates to come in here using four-letter words or hate terminology in my presence.”

    That is all it takes folks. Just create and propagate the habit in the same way the gay-hate propaganda people created their false “gay lifestyle” habit.

    • Yes, Charles. The “bar-scene lifestyle” that so many condemn as endemic to gay people is much the same as cishet (cisgender, heterosexual) may engage in at some point in their lives. We forget so quickly in the quest for our own acceptance and dignity by society that we consciously or unconsciously choose others to be denied theirs.

    • I have been telling people not to use “gay lifestyle” for years. It’s amazing how many people will not back down on using it, either because they believe the propaganda is 100% truthful and cannot conceive of white picket fence, church going, volunteering gay folk in committed relationships, or because “I don’t mean it that way” so it’s okay to say it.

      • Hi Pat. Christian fundamentalists in the United States are taught that the preacher, once he steps into the pulpit, is overcome by the Holy Spirit. Basically, God takes over the preacher’s mind, heart, soul, and vocal cords. When he begins to preach to the congregation, every word that comes out of his mouth, every comma, and every cough or sneeze between sentences is the direct word of God. In other words, it is not the preacher giving the sermon, but it is God giving the sermon, and every word in the sermon is straight from the mouth of God. As far as they are concerned, if the preacher uses the term “homosexual lifestyle” in a sermon, then God himself spoke those two words—and they must abide by the words of God 100 percent and always.

        This is the precise reason why so many fundie churches are referred to by nonfundie Christians as “cults” rather than churches. A belief like this gives fundie preachers an enormous amount of personal power over the people in their congregations. It often sets up a “cult of personality” like in North Korea with Kim-Jong-Un. Fundie preachers who fully understand this dynamic and the power it affords them often end up abusing this power—and it usually takes the form of money play (embezzling, etc.) or sexual abuse involving female members of the church,sometimes including female children.

        The strange case of Jack Hyles, a famous fundie preacher in Hammond, Indiana, is a perfect example of the sexual liberties some of these preachers take. You can look him up on the Internet.

        • Thanks Charles for that background. Not being USAmerican, I’ve never heard of this understanding of the pastor speaking the words of a God in that sense. That puts a lot of other things into focus. Very helpful.

          • Be careful though. Some fundies would admit to this, and some would deny it. Fundie culture has its own internal variations. They like to pretend they are part of a homogeneous and united front, but they have a lot of internal disagreements, squabbling, and variations in belief. Unfortunately, the only way to talk about them is to do it generally. If you tried any other approach, each blog post would have to be 100 pages long.

          • Pat. Take a look at this. This is fundie Pastor Jack Schaap—who was given a hefty prison sentence. This guy was a well known fundie church dictator. Not suitable for children—but an excerpt from an actual sermon he delivered—and these people sit in judgement on other people—give me a break:

  17. Speaking of “gay lifestyle” being a hate term, there appears to be a rising tide (no pun intended) of racism against black people in China, and some of it is being undergirded and socially intensified by comical commercials for products on Chinese television. This shows you how seemingly innocent, and even funny, things can be used as a PR tool to propagate race hatred. This is most likely what happened with the term “gay lifestyle: Note this TV ad developed for a Chinese laundry detergent:

    • This weekend we went to see what we thought would be a pleasant diversion – “The Secret Life of Pets”. What we got instead was a jumbled mess of a plot with a distinctly racist tone mocking the Black Power movement of the 60s and using casual death as a comedy device. But this is par for the course for Dreamworks – jive-talking donkeys satirizing Black folks, Minions talking Spanish-like sort-of-speech, smart-assedness without wisdom. And sold as a children’s movie.

      We engage in this sort of code-speech all the time in America. But seeing its underlying biases so overtly and proudly cast in digital celluloid by writers who should know better is chilling.

      That China is doing this is to be expected. Every nation I’ve been to does.

    • This has absolutely nothing to do with the gay lifestyle. And, there is a gay lifestyle. That you would deny that is odd. Once someone decides to practice homosexuality, they enter a specific subculture. Perhaps you like that term better. Relationships, media, job choices, politics, travel etc. are all impacted by their sexuality. No gay lifestyle? Tell that to the advertisers that make big bucks marketing to this lucrative group. Call things by their name.

      • You are wrong IDoJunkMail. A few gay people may inhabit this so-called “subculture” you are trying to define, but most gay people are not part of it. You are resorting to using the “gay lifestyle” term for the reason its creators intended—to smear gay people as a whole, based on the lives of a very small subset of people within the national gay community. Most gay people are like me—and I am not gay—dad with a wife, two kids, and a nice McMansion on the far edge of town, etc.

      • Don’t forget that all American gay college students want to attend Antioch College and the various Art Institutes, especially the one in Savannah, Georgia. The truth of the matter is that the vast majority of gay students attend state universities and nongay private colleges.

        • You have now moved from error to nonsense. But, there is definitely a higher percentage of practicing homosexuals in the arts. But, de facto, there are more gays at public colleges. And each of those schools have a gay subculture. What about that confuses you?

          • “But, de facto, there are more gays at public colleges. ”

            Your use of “de facto” in this context is nonsensical and I suspect you used it only to make yourself look smarter.

            Actually I did in fact attend a public college (CCNY). The REASON I did so was that my parents had no money and if I wanted to continue my education I was going to have to shoulder that load and do it on my own.

            So I found a full-time job with a schedule that made it possible to also attend classes full time. I never missed a tuition payment and I had rent to pay during this time as well.

            I didn’t sleep a lot during those four years, but I got my degrees and I did not owe a penny to anybody.

            So if there are more Gays at public colleges I guess that means that we need schools we can afford.

            • I, too, went to public colleges and worked two jobs. So, I’m not sure that has anything to do with being gay, just determined. But you missed my point. Art schools tend to be small. Public universities tend to be gigantic. So, in absolute numbers, there are more gays in public colleges. But, as a percentage, there is a dramatically higher number of gays in art school. Do you understand?

          • “But, there is definitely a higher percentage of practicing homosexuals in the arts.”

            So what!!! I was making the point that most gay people attend state schools and nonfundie, nongay private colleges and universities. I don’t give a damn how many gay people are in some arts college or program. My point is that most gay students are just like heterosexual students in terms of the colleges and universities they choose and end up in—-normal. Are you now going to argue that the peak of a bell curve represents the minority in the sample?

            • No I’m arguing that you, like most on here, know nothing about statistical significance. You think that because you are “faithful” that all practicing homosexuals are. That is ludicrous. The data shows some gay men have hundreds, even thousands of partners, many anonymous.

              • “The data shows some gay men have hundreds, even thousands of partners, many anonymous.”
                Some… not all. Not even most. Some heterosexual men do the same thing, so do most female prostitutes. But we don’t judge heterosexuals by the actions of the promiscuous or those who make their living having sex, do we?

                • Do some research. Gay men have significantly more partners that heterosexual men. That is because the focus of the gay lifestyle is on experimentation. Homosexuals are much more likely to have anonymous sex. The data shows that it is a promiscuous culture. More that heterosexuals. If you have data that refutes that (that is not compiled by a gay publication) I’ll be glad to look at it.

                  • I find that amusing. Growing up all the heterosexual guys boasted constantly about their numerous “sexual conquests.” I have heard the same in adult conversations. They only stopped TALKING about this after they “found Jesus.” That did not mean they stopped doing it. Do we have a double standard? Do we see hypocrisy? How many evangelical preachers have found themselves with their britches on the floor and the camera lights in their eyes? Check out Swaggart for one. He’s one of a long line. I do not say that is proper behavior. But don’t say that heterosexual men don’t do what you accuse gay men of doing. Have some integrity or be quiet.

                    • I asked you for data. Not stories told by your friends. Data are numbers from a subset that statistically represent the total population. You claim heterosexual men have as many partners, on average, as homosexual men. Prove it with data, not anecdotes. And not with data from gay sources that don’t want the world to know the dark underbelly.

                  • Your whole premise is that there is such a thing as “the” gay lifestyle. Gay people are as individual as straight people. No two live exactly the same lives. The notion that being gay is about experimentation is ludicrous at best. Do you have any real data not compiled by people who dislike gay people, by people who actually know gay people?

                    • We needed to have a movement in order to be safe change unjust laws and live the mainstream lifestyle just like heterosexuals.

      • Excuse me, John (NOT Pavlovitz), but I realized I was gay at the age of 8 years old. I continued to attend regular public schools, got “saved” at a Southern Baptist church, left that for a church that allowed me to think about my faith, graduated from public high school, put myself through college. That is exactly what all my friends were doing and they were not LGBT (even though we did not have such a term back then). I started a career in social work. Got hired by a federal agency where I stayed for 35 years before retiring. How is that a “gay subculture?” (Even though I had LGBT co-workers through out those years.)

        I bought a home near work and restaurants and nightlife, where I have lived for over 38 years. I have an assortment of neighbors….many of whom are good friends, both gay and straight.

        Did you not “hang out” with people to whom you were drawn for one reason or another? What criteria did you use in making friendships? Was that a “straight subculture?”

        Use whatever brain you have, dude. Marketers direct their skills at whoever it is they want to buy products and services. We queers do not gravitate toward anything in particular that is different from anyone else. It isn’t a subculture. It is a choice of what interests you. I think you operate the same way, do you not?

        Call things by their name? Well good marketing strategy is one I would apply to those who want to make money from any segment of our society. Call things by their name? Uninformed, bigoted, fearful, self-loathing and probably a closeted gay man is what I call you. But in the outrageous chance you are straight, you are the type of straight person I actually avoid. I don’t need your toxicity in my life. Jesus is my rock and He makes it clear I don’t have to put up with you. I do have to love you…..but I am not required to like you or spend time with you or even listen to your drivel.

  18. “Self reported. Gays have more sexual partners.”

    More than whom? Please. I know plenty of heterosexuals (mostly men) who are just as piggish about sex as any Gay man would be.

    Being a man, I would not presume to know what women do, be they Straight or Gay. The Lesbians with whom I have been friends over the years have run the gamut from serial monogamy to lifetime commitment to bed-hopping.

    In brief your sexual orientation has no bearing on the number of sexual partners you will have.

    • That is your opinion. Data would prove that. But, apparently, you operate on emotions and don’t want data to cloud it.

      Gay men experiment. That is part of the psyche. Lesbians seem to have more emotional attachment. Gay men are looking for the next high. That drives their lifestyle. That is the truth. Advertisers make millions marketing to the gay subculture.

      • “That is your opinion. Data would prove that.”

        I gave you data in the post above this one. Can you not read? And did you miss my post when I stated that I have been married for fourteen years and neither I nor my my husband have EVER looked elsewhere?

        I am giving up on you. You will not see what you do not want to see nor hear what you do not want to hear.

        It is not good sense to engage in a battle of wits with the unarmed.

        • I’ve seen no data you provided. Just you assertion that you are faithful. Good for you. I can read. In fact I have two masters degrees, one in business. So, I understand statistics. So, while your claimed fidelity is admirable, it is not sufficient to define the practices of this lifestyle.

        • Scott. This is what I meant above fundies not accepting facts in my long post above. They talk information and data, but when you present them with it—they treat it as irrelevant. The American conservative movement has a rot doctern that says liberals operate from a base of emotion but conservatives operate with facts. This rot doctern is another piece of mindless propaganda crap from the same idiots who are voting for Donald Trump. It is just who they are and how they do not think or perceive well.

  19. “Call things by their name.”

    Mmmmkay.

    I got a name for you. You are rapidly becoming a professional pain in the ass.

    • That’s your choice to believe. But it makes you petty and small to demonize someone that tells the truth about your subculture.

      The gay lobby has successfully marketed a sanitized version of the gay lifestyle that whitewashes the darkness that the lifestyle represents.

      • I know what you are talking about John but you are not telling the truth. You are only looking at the sub culture within the gay community. The gay community is diverse. As an out lesbian for 17 years I didn’t have anything rainbow in my house until I met my former partner who loves rainbows. You see, a gay community was created in response to discrimination and isolation form the mainstream. Dating back before the 1990’s many of us were closeted. There were secret clubs and dances so that we were safe from being attacked leaving the club or seen going in. That started to change in the 1990s at least where I lived. It was a place to come out of the darkness and step into the light and be ourselves. The gay bar became a place to meet up when there weren’t gay friendly places to go. Over the years that has changed. Most places in my city welcome gay people. Now there are gay book clubs and running clubs because we do the same kinds of thing as everyone else and we like to spend time with other gay people.

  20. I find it amusing that you have some intimate knowledge of this supposed gay lifestyle, that you are privy to information that gay people themselves seem to be uninformed about. How do you account for your marvelous omniscience?

  21. “In fact I have two masters degrees, one in business. So, I understand statistics.”

    Is that supposed to impress me? I have two Bachelor’s Degrees. One in Dramatic Arts and the other in Music Performance.

    Oh WAIT those must be GAYYYYYY DEGREEEEEEEEEES.

    I get it now. A THOUSAND pardons. HOW could my ability to play Grieg’s “Peer Gynt” suite on the piano or my ability to understand the motivations of the title character in “Taxi Driver” COMPARE to your precious understanding of STATISTICS?

    Thanks SO MUCH for SCHOOLING ME.*

    *All the sarcasm in this post is 100% intentional and if you think I am taking it back you have a LONG wait ahead.

    (GOD that felt good!)

    • I’m glad your childish diatribe helped you. While Ido value the arts, my point of mentioning my degrees was not boasting. It was to establish that I have training to understand the training to understand the difference between anecdotal evidence and real statistics that define a population. Perhaps that is still beyond your comprehension.

      • “I’m glad your childish diatribe helped you.”

        That’s right. When someone hits you where you live, trot out the accusations (“childish, rude, anti-Christian,” you name it, you guys use it).

        “Perhaps that is still beyond your comprehension.”

        Yet another attack on my intellect from someone who ought to know better.

    • Got pinot noir? I’m in. Charles, I like you. Remind me to look y’all up when I visit. I like a person who can maintain a sense of humor. You crack me up, often. And on here? often is a good thing! Bless your heart. You have a strong faith mister. It would be an honor and pleasure shaking your hand and giving you a hug! Go Vols!

      When all get to heaven, we’ll sing and shout in victory! Amen.

  22. Scott. Just in case you are interested in people who do junk mail. Kigali, Rwanda is a nice place to be a missionary for the Anglican Church:

    http://oneroadhome.org/

    I just wonder why the Anglican church lets him spend so much time pursuing this anti-gay war when he is getting paid to do missionary work? I wonder if he is a member of the African missionary factions that are encouraging some African countries to pass laws requiring execution of homosexuals. And whatever happened to Burundi?

  23. Here are two interesting notes from Wikipedia:

    1) Lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people living in Rwanda face discrimination not faced by non-LGBT people. While neither homosexuality nor homosexual acts are illegal, homosexuality is considered a taboo topic, and there is no significant public discussion of this issue in any region of the country.[2] No special legislative protections are afforded to LGBT citizens,[2][3] and same-sex marriages are not recognised by the state, as the Constitution of Rwanda provides that “[o]nly civil monogamous marriage between a man and a woman is recognized”.[4] LGBT Rwandans, however, have reported being harassed, blackmailed, and even arrested by the police under various laws dealing with public order and morality.[5]

    On 16 December 2009, the national parliament debated whether to make homosexuality a criminal offense, with a punishment of 5–10 years’ imprisonment.[6] This legislation was similar to the controversial anti-homosexuality bill in the neighboring country of Uganda.[7] Justice Minister Tharcisse Karugarama, however, condemned and refuted reports that the government intended to criminalize homosexual acts, saying that sexual orientation is a private matter, not a state business.[8]

    2) Religious Beliefs

    Most Rwandan citizens are affiliated with the Catholic Church, which views homosexuality and cross-dressing as signs of immorality. The other major religions, Protestantism and Islam also tend to take a similar viewpoint.

    For example, in 2007, the Anglican Church in Rwanda condemned “the non biblical behaviors” of the European and American churches and insisted that they would not support the ordination of gay clergy.[13] and have vowed to refuse donations from churches that support LGBT rights.[14]

    Likewise, The Archbishop of the Episcopal Church of Rwanda called homosexuality, “moral genocide” and against Rwandan culture because, in his view, sexuality may only be expressed within the bounds of a marriage between a man and a woman.[15]

  24. I get so tired of the irrational argument that states that a person who reads the Bible in the original languages, with a concern for what the words meant then and therefore how they should be interpreted now, with understanding of what the cultural context was and what the writer was reacting to, and with consideration for how the verses at hand are affected by the previous and following verses, is considered to be “rejecting the Bible” if the reading does not line up with a poorly-translated version that is burdened with culturally-acquired hatred for a specific demographic.

    • And I embrace you as my sister as well, Patricia. I am tired beyond measure of those like John (not Pavlovitz) above telling me I’m going to hell because my doctrine differs from theirs. I am convinced and convicted that we are all God’s children and that He alone will judge us. If the faith I hold and feel deeper than my bones is wrong, I accept the penalty, but my faith and the assurance that I receive through the Holy Spirit lead me to believe that will not be the case and that I will make it to Paradise because of our brother Jesus’ sacrifice. Perhaps ironically, I believe I will see John (not Pavolvitz, though certainly him as well) there too, in spite of the gulf between our beliefs. The Bible says over and over that God knows our hearts and that He will judge us by them. It’s clear that John Not desires to serve God, no matter what specific doctrines he holds. I believe God honors that heart and our doctrines will be corrected in the instant of our Resurrection. May the Peace that Passes Understanding bless us all.

  25. Now then, Now Then, NOW THEN!
    The Bible talks of a “great deception” that will come in the latter times, and my belief is that the promotion of LBGTQ etc is it. It is the promotion and normalisation of homosexuality, to the point that homosexual marriage is rendered common, and ultimately the age of consent for both heterosexuals and homosexuals will be lowered to around 14. The lie is that it is “normal” to be a practising homosexual – and all that that entails.
    The fact is – if you are a “christian” we have to submit to the ultimate authority, and that is God. God does not change. he is the same yesterday today and forever. So much so, that he sent his son Jesus to die for our sins.

    Nobody is denying that homosexuality exists. It does.

    But it is an evil spirit, and it enters through generational sin. It enters through various gateways and various vulnerabilities, usually when somebody is very young. It is s curse that can be HEALED by God. All that is required is that the person who suffers from the affliction of homexuaility admits that it is not in line with who God is and what He intended. The problem we face today is the normalisation of homosexuality – ie – the lie. The implementation of the lie precludes many from seeing it for what it truly is. It is the way of all sin. Sin is rooted in us believing a lie. A small lie – “just one more cigarette” or a big lie – ” she deserved to be killed.”
    Because the roots of homosexuality 9 times out of 10 are grounded in vulnerable children from unstable family environments, they grow up looking for validation in groups that will accept them. The spirit of homosexuality has entered them already, and is at work in them drawing them towards same sex experience and philosophy.

    Most gay people will admit they did not choose to be gay. Many do not WANT to be gay. Of course they don’t! Not because they are vilified or marginalised by society, but because they know deep deep down, it is not who they truly are. But the lie has taken a hold of them, and the spirit has established a stronghold (a mindset).

    These are the facts.

    Christ’s blood was shed for all. There is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, he does not condemn the homosexual, nor even those who are caught in it’s practise. But he does require the church to call out the truth and to pray for deliverance for those caught up in the practise, those deceived by the lie.

    Let us be under no illusion, brothers and sisters! This is a LIE that has been propagated, and we must be cognisant of that and treat our fellow brothers and sisters thusly.

    The woman at the well was only able to walk away from her sin ONCE SHE KNEW THE TRUTH AND IT HAD BEEN REVEALED TO HER!!!

    “Go and sin no more!!” She KNEW THEN, what her sin was.
    She had been deceived, but now she knew the truth.

    Do not expect homosexuals to turn away from an unfulfilling and damaging lifestyle until they KNOW And ACCEPT that they have been deceived. And THAT my dear brothers and sisters, is how we should be praying for this situation. You need to pray against the strongholds and spiritual powers that have exalted themselves AGAINST THE KNOWLEDGE OF GOD.

    • The great deception is all the fundies who think they are “all right with God” simply because they have the words in a book. In Matthew 23, Jesus made it abundantly clear to the Christian fundamentalists and conservative evangelicals of his day that the words and laws in the scriptures alone were not enough. They had to also take into account the spirit of the law.

    • You keep talking about facts… and then stating opinions not based at all in fact.
      Here IS a fact: you don’t know a fraction as much about homosexuality as you think you know. Not what it is, not where it comes from, not what life is like for gay people. You also don’t know what God thinks about it. Oh, I know you THINK you know what God thinks. After all, I have no doubt you can quote chapter and verse where it says it’s a sin. And I can quote those same verses back to you in the original languages, and show you were the translations are either downright wrong or deliberately vague, or in the case of Romans 1, where you have completely overlooked historical context (that is, the SPECIFIC situation extant in first century Rome that prompted Paul’s comments, a situation that exists nowhere in the world today).
      I know you THINK that Christianity has vehemently condemned homosexuality for its entire existence. But church history won’t back you up in that. The church fathers wrote extensively against pederasty, which was a feature of everyday life in ancient Rome, and rightly so. But only in later centuries were their writings mistranslated and distorted to make it appear they were condemning homosexuality, rather than the exploitation of young men, most of whom were not homosexual by nature. Only relatively recently did people come to think that Paul was speaking of homosexuals in 1 Cor. 6 and 1 Tim. 1. (They don’t know that Paul invented the word ἀρσενοκοῖται, only used it twice, never with a definite article, and didn’t define it. They don’t know the gender of the word is ambiguous in his usage. They don’t know that the very next writer to use the word, in the second century, understood it to refer to female prostitutes. In later centuries, Christian writers mistakenly took it to refer to a sexual practice between husband and wife. Only in the past 150 years or less did people think it meant homosexuals, and there is ZERO grammatical or historical evidence for that “translation.” But that’s how the newest Bibles have translated it.)
      Homosexuality is a normal variant of sexuality. God created it, not just in humans, but in most of His creation. It exists in most of the animal kingdom, and God called that “good.” Among species that mate for life, homosexuality serves a positive purpose, preventing overpopulation and providing adoptive parents for orphaned young. It could and would serve the same purposes in humans if human prejudice didn’t interfere.
      People like you like to talk about revisionist theology. But you are several centuries too late. The revision already took place, about four hundred years ago when vernacular Bibles first began to be produced in great numbers. But Bible translations prior to then, the very earliest, don’t reflect the anti-homosexual nonsense that is rampant in newer ones.
      Did you know that one of the earliest English versions did not render Lev. 18:22 and 20:13 as condemnations of homosexuality? Since both verses in Hebrew mention a woman’s bed, that early translator, knowing that under the Law a woman’s bed was her own, assumed the woman was present in her bed, and took the verses to be prohibitions of two men having sex with one woman together. (Later commentators attempted to “correct” his translation with parenthetical notes to try to make it agree with later translations that insert comparisons [“as with a woman,” “as with womankind”] that don’t exist in the Hebrew text.) That early translator’s version wasn’t likely correct either, but at least it was a whole lot closer than the abominations (no pun intended) that pass for translations of the verses in versions from 1611 to the present.

    • To “Pastor” Raymond,

      You said, (quote) “Because the roots of homosexuality 9 times out of 10 are grounded in vulnerable children from unstable family environments…”

      Where –WHERE! — did you get such **rediculous* information?!?

      I came from a loving, kind, caring Christian home, and did many LGBT+ people. How dare you insinuate something about someone else with nothing but your rank suppositions?

      Yet actually getting to know someone who is an LGBT Christian and see then for who they are as fellow children of God, rather than some caricature promulgate by haters with an agenda.

  26. Raymond, you distort Scripture the same way as so many others on this list. You do not get to judge how the Holy Spirit works in my life as a gay man. You do not get to determine the validity of my personal relationship with Jesus Christ. You drive people away from God with your distorted theology.
    Yes I am aware of the salvation that came from the cross and I was saved by that in about 33AD. I didn’t need you to try and tell me that deep down inside I don’t know who I am. I do know. God and I are clear on that and God is on my side.
    You probably promote literal interpretation of Scripture…..at least based on your diatribic posting. Do you have both hands? Both feet? Both eyes? Then you are not a literalist because Jesus specifically said to cut off hands and feet and pluck out eyes that caused you to sin. Please don’t tell me you haven’t sinned either. Jesus was using metaphorical language to make a point. His point was that we are to respect each other’s dignity as human beings. We are NOT to abuse, coerce or otherwise manipulate or mistreat each other. You miss a major point about the woman at the well. Jesus was speaking to an absolute outcast because she was a Samaritan. Jesus was also speaking to a woman. He broke all sorts of societal and religious taboos in what He did and said. Should we not be getting that message? The message of respecting all of God’s children out weighs dogma. And we all know that Jesus never said a word about what we now call homosexuality. Why not use compassion and care in your ministry instead of shaming and fear? You come much closer to the ministry of Jesus Christ than your current ministry.

    • Bruce, you are the one that distorts Scripture. The Bible, in numerous places, prohibits homosexual practice. You choose to ignore that, and live in a sinful lifestyle. That is sad, but it is your choice. I’m sure you have come up with some revisionist interpretation of the Bible that says Romans 1 was about temple prostitutes or some such illogical thing.

      Gays are desperate to “have their cake and eat it too”. They want the community of the Church, but want to ignore its theology. That is not honest.

      • Yes, John (not Pavlovitz) the Bible has many prohibitions about many things. Most are in what is known as the Levitical Purity Code. While it may speak of same-sex acts, it also prohibits the eating or touching of pork, touching a dead body, sleeping in the same bed with a menstruating wife, etc. etc. It also tells us to stone disobedient children. It requires a woman to squat on straw during her monthly cycle. The list is almost endless. It came about because of the purity required to go to temple/synagogue and the need to create more children. The word abomination is often used. Abomination does not equate to sin. The literal translation is to make to want to throw up. That’s why I consider much of what you have posted to be an abomination!

        It is not “revisionist” to utilize what we learn about the ancient languages to more correctly interpret Scripture. It actually has the potential to get us closer to God. I don’t really believe you have read the Bible from cover to cover. Otherwise you would know how many awful, nasty, deceitful, and abominable things are in it that are simply our inheritance as Christians. Read Judges for a while. Sampson was hardly the victim of Delilah. Sampson was also a murderer. It’s amazing what never gets discussed from the pulpit about what Scripture really “says.”

        Have you ever read the story of Peter’s dreams in the Acts of the Apostles? In the dream there is a sheet filled with prohibited foods put before Peter and God tells him to “kill and eat.” Peter rebels saying he has never had anything unclean in his mouth. God then tells him not to call anything God created unclean. (Most of the prohibited foods could not be preserved and represented a health hazard if consumed past the “expiration” date.) In the second part of the dream a similar scenario is presented only this time God tells Peter not to call anyone God has created as profane, an abomination, or inherently bad. When Peter shares his dream with the congregation, they rebel. To summarize, Peter’s response was “who am I to argue with God?”

        Paul’s letters are to specific congregations who were trying to be true to the faith in the middle of a society that was different and in which they were a religious minority. He was giving each advice about how to be Christian in their own circumstances. Yes, some of the references were to pagan temple prostitutes. Where Paul tells people not to give up their natural feelings he was not talking about same gender issues. He was telling people who were clearly not what we now call LGBT that they should not be dabbling in “gay stuff” to use the vernacular. I agree. If you are straight, stop experimenting with gay sex! You have to keep it in context….something you do not do. Another mistranslation involves the words arsenakatoi and malakoi (I’m sure I butchered the spelling!) They were mistranslated as related to homosexuality. In truth they refer to softness or effeminacy.

        Think about what Jesus said about what we call homosexuality. That will not take long. He said nothing. The closest thing that might be related was the healing of the Centurion’s “slave.” Anyone with a knowledge of Roman Centurions would know that he could care less about a slave. The guy was property. The word used (which I can neither spell nor pronounce) actually meant “boy” or lover. The Centurion was not worried about just a slave. He was worried about someone he held very dear and loved. Jesus healed the sick man without even going to the Centurion’s home. Remember the Centurion said that he was not worthy for Jesus to even come under his roof. All Jesus needed to do was say the word and healing would take place. It did.

        You can trash my Christianity all you want John, but I still have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ and you do not get to judge that.

        In reality you may be right or wrong about all of this and I might be right or wrong about it. We will find out when we stand before our Creator. But I do not think I will get asked anything about my sexual orientation. Instead I will be asked how well I cared for God’s children. How I fed the hungry, watered the thirsty, clothed the naked, visited the sick and imprisoned. I will be asked how well I loved my neighbor and how well I loved my God. My faith tells me I can pass that test.

        Just remember that your words cause pain to others and that is never of God.

        • Hi Bruce!

          The word in question was “pais” and you got the meaning exactly right: “boy” or “lover;” in brief, a male of the slave class used for sexual purposes. But it is clear from the level of anxiety in the Centurion’s plea to Jesus that he was obviously in love with the young man. Slaves can be replaced. Lovers not so much.

          And what did Jesus do? Did he read to the man from Leviticus or Genesis?

          Nope.

          He told the Centurion to go home and that he would find the boy healed. He ALSO praised the Centurion for the greatness of his faith.

          Keep speaking truth to power, Brother Bruce.

        • Your mention of the Levitical code is irrelevant. The issue is that the prohibition against homosexual practice is repeated in the New Testament . And the Jesus didn’t say it defense is feeble. Do you only believe the red parts?

          I am not just a defender of God’s Word. I live in the third world and work on behalf of the poor. So, I agree with you that what counts, in the end, is what is done in Jesus’ name

          • That is the sad and scary part John. You are perpetuating a belief system that gets people tortured, beaten and killed in the world where they live and where you purport to bring the Gospel. Take an inventory of what is actually in Scripture. Even including the Levitical Purity Code what is mentioned about what we now call homosexuality is a minuscule part of the message of salvation.

            Again, you are using incorrect translations that straight white men deemed meant what we call homosexuality…..they had no word for it at all. You leave out the portions about the interaction of these communities with the larger non-believing communities in which they had to exist. None of all the thousands of keystrokes you have typed in this entire exercise can compare with the message of Jesus. He was actually asked what was the greatest commandment. His response was: “Hear O Israel, the Lord our God is one. You shall worship the Lord your God with all your heart and soul and mind and strength. This is the first and great commandment. The second is like it. You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.”
            Even the Ten Commandments do not address issues of human sexuality. The first five concern our relationship with God and the second five our relationships with each other. Adultery was a contract violation, not a sexual sin. Think about it: If a virgin was raped her father, NOT she was compensated. She was his property and was now soiled or damaged.
            This was essentially a male insecurity issue. Almost nothing is said about what we now call lesbians and their sexuality. Think about that. And remember part of that is based on the fact that women were considered as property to be passed from father to a husband. Jesus bounced that notion out on its ear. Who funded Jesus’ ministry? Women….and out of their own resources. Who remained at the foot of the cross until the bitter end? Women….they remained commited to Him. Who first saw the resurrected Jesus? Women…..they were entrusted with a sacred message. Jesus clearly could not trust the boys.
            I wish you well in your ministry. I just wish it focused on the wholeness of the love of God in creation and not on something as little mentioned as human sexuality. I wish more than anything that you were not perpetuating a system of torture and death….in the name of God. It’s in the name of insecure man, not God.

    • Dear Bruce – I didn’t make assumptions about you – please dont make assumptions about me.
      And what point are you making about Jesus making a metaphorical choice? What are you talking about? Jesus talking to the woman at the well DID break all the taboos etc, but there is also a bigger message there which is correct in what I indicated. Don’t miss that dear brother.I didn’t miss those points – I just chose not to focus on them, because they were not what I was trying to outline. I am compassionate and I do care. I feel absolutely convicted that my discernment of the spirit of homosexuality is correct. If God said it was an abomination once, has he suddenly changed his mind? Just because Jesus died, does not mean that suddenly all sin is ok.

      I love you with the love of the Lord brother!

      • Well, Raymond, you can be as convicted as you like. Unfortunately I do not believe that the Holy Spirit has penetrated your male armor and reached your heart.
        I have had a personal encounter with God that you would not understand. It is more personal than I would ever share on a list like this where there are sharks and wolves whose primary mission is to tear apart human lives because of their own ignorance and may deliberate stupidity.
        I read Scripture every single day of my life. I completed a four year course of study about the Bible and its origins. And no, Jesus did not speak King James English as I have heard others say. He actually spoke Aramaic. There are things in Scripture that will curdle your blood because the narrator states they were done in the name of God. We only hear the “pretty parts” in most churches. The nitty grit of the Bible remains in the shadows. So before you start criticizing me, look at the book. Look at how we got it (the current canon of 66 books was via political vote at a council of Nicaea around 400 of the current era). You use abomination…..research it. The word doesn’t mean sin. It has to do with ritual purity. It may not even be the best translation into English of what the original was.
        By the way, a major part of the story of the woman at the well was the manifestation of Jesus to Samaritans as the messiah. It is very telling that the first Samaritan Jesus revealed himself to was a woman! Guess the boys would have been too threatened or skeptical. They ultimately believed but first she told them the story. There’s a big message in there, my brother. Think about it. Maybe the Holy Spirit is still trying to pierce your armor and let you know that you haven’t got all the information and what you have is not accurate.

    • Their approach to ministry and the Bible is precisely what is destroying the ministries of people like IdoJunkMail and Pastor Raymond. You can read about that on my blog today in two new posts:

      https://faith17983.wordpress.com/

      People like you two are your own worst enemies—and your stances are undermining your churches—and will eventually destroy them.

  27. “Pastor” Raymond’s heartless rant would be funny if it wasn’t so sad, damaging, evil, malicious, hurtful, and just plain dangerous for those in his care. He demonstrates the vile behaviours of a spiritual terrorist. I don’t think that conversing with him would have any benefit, other than to refute his assertions for the benefit of other readers who have heard this kind of male bovine excrement before.

  28. Bless you dear friends, and I especially thank you for pointing out and discussing the areas in my post where I showed that Christ was accepting of the homosexual.

    I never mentioned that I have never sinned – All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. I’m simply drawing a parallel truth from between the woman at the well and those under a lie about homosexuality. I didn’t say reject all those who are homosexuals. I didn’t say don’t love them. I didn’t say marginalise them. Quite the opposite.
    The spiritual reactions here are absolutely those of a demonic nature, reacting against the truth as it presented – with hatred, anger, and venom. But then – I expected nothing less.

    God loves ALL human beings. Christ died for ALL of us. Homosexuality is no greater sin than any other, although it may have different consequences. All we are doing is presenting the truth as it is laid out in scripture. God does not change Male and Female he created them. That’s a FACT. Can any of you argue that?

    • Sorry, but I think you are wasting your breath. An appeal to Biblical truth, like Romans 1, is lost here because there is not spiritual discernment. They have cherrypicked the Bible and, the passages that prohibit homosexual practice. they have applied revisionist thinking to say “it does not really say what it clearly says”.

      Lord, have mercy and open their eyes.

        • Hey Raymond you said

          “The spiritual reactions here are absolutely those of a demonic nature, reacting against the truth as it presented – with hatred, anger, and venom. But then – I expected nothing less.”

          Why are you condemning people for telling the truth about themselves? I know a few people lost it but they are hurting. Can you not see the difference?

      • john– thank you for defending Truth amongst the vicious verbal attacks. To me, I distill it down to this: ‘either you are a Believer or you are not.’

        JPs sharp left-turn into New Age beliefs kind of makes my head spin. [ I was in New Age for 25+ years, so I know it when I see it.] It’s almost humorous (if it wasn’t tragic) that JP & followers think they are on to something ‘new’. As even Adam & Eve, wanted God’s powers thru disobedience.

        Oy Vey!

        • It is sad that defending the truth labels you a bigot. One of my best friends was in the lifestyle for decades, and about ten years ago, God rescued him. He is 70 and has a ministry to me dealing with sexual brokenness. The sad thing here is that there is no acknowledgement of brokenness, thus no repentance and restoration. Lord, let one person reading this realize that they can be free from homosexual practice in Jesus’ name.

          • There is no requirement in the Bible for LGBTQ people to become straight.

            I know a little of the ex-gay world. When I had trouble with reconciling my sexuality to my faith and I could not see being gay as right I sought support. I met someone who was Ex-gay and he gave me materials to read and videos to watch.
            Ex-gay proponents ask gay people to follow a ‘made up’ methodology. People go to them with the belief they are the experts.

            From what I saw it is behaviour modification not spiritual transformation. Those with sexual addictions are helped but being gay is not an addiction nor is it a compulsion. Being a lesbian is part of the fabric of who I am. If the thread is pulled out, I am afraid I will untangle. Yet ironically I was told this is what is required of me.Ex-gays want to destroy the gay part of you.

            It takes years and years of self constraint and self absorption to deny being gay and maintain it. As well most of the successful people make a ministry out of it, they speak about it, make support groups about it, cut people out of their lives because of it, turn their backs on LGBTQ rights because of it.

            Ex-Gays choose to use a method of deny, deny, deny and ‘kill the desire’. Then replace it with things to distract you.

            Killing parts of yourself is self harm. We deaden parts of ourselves. and we don’t ever become fully alive. It cause distress and anxiety and self loathing. The only way to deal with living a life like that is to build high walls around yourself with select people who strengthen you in your denial of self. It’s a supreme ongoing effort.

            There seems to be a group of people who have been successful but I find those ex-gays to be the most condemning of gays. I could not bear being around the suspicion and hostility ex-gays have towards those that affirm same sex marriage and LGBTQ people.

            It is a choice to be ex-gay and should never be made mandatory nor required of developing children and teenagers because they are not ready to make those choices before they have even fully matured.

            Be forewarned what you are getting yourself into before you make the choice to be Ex-gay. You will have to train like an Olympic athlete in order to survive. That is your burden not your freedom.

            I believe God has shown grace to those who choose the Ex-gay path in his mercy and deep understanding of our inability to reconcile our faith with who we are. God is good to all.

        • You were in New Age nonsense for 25+ years and then you found Christian fundamentalism!!! You know what Forrest Gump says: “Stupid is as stupid does.” Your arrival at another unholy outpost was very predictable.

            • It was a nature worship-occult-spirit channeling weird kind of religious something or another that some people were into in the 1980s. Just as fundies are panicking about LGBTQ rights today, the big fundie-fad panic of the 1980s was about the so-called rise of New Age religion. Perhaps you recall this New Age hymn from the 1980s, which was labeled as being in the genre of New Age music:

      • I will not cherry pick Romans 1 in order to condemn a whole segment of society. Romans 1 is talking about idolatry and forsaking God. Which is not what we do. Romans 1 is not speaking to the LGBTQ people of today who want to contribute to society, be faithful in marriage, and love and worship God.

    • Yes we can argue that God could not have possibly made just male and female when we have intersex people for example and genetic chimerism . There is diversity in us and variance. More and more research is confirming this and it is Christians who ignore science that are rejecting the truth and who are trying to fit people into an impossible template.

      The truth is the Bible does not address the scientific evidence of those who are different genetically because people in the time of Paul did not have that knowledge. Therefore Paul was not speaking with full knowledge of the human condition he was only speaking of sexual excess, lust and abuse. Paul was not speaking about loving partnerships. There is a big difference between the two.

  29. There is no knowledge or discipline we can learn that can help us love our enemies. It will take a feeling emotional heart. Once we truly feel for our enemies deeply with affection we then can begin to love our enemies as ourselves.

    I have an almost impossible time loving those who lie about me, insult me and condemn me. It makes me angry and why not? Why shouldn’t I be angry but how do I be angry and not sin? How do I stop the vicious cycle of bitterness between brother and sister?

    Only emotional feeling for another human being which leads us to care about them enough that I want them with me, as God wants them with him will I ever finally love my enemy.

    God looks upon us all with love. A love which has nothing to do with knowledge. It’s a love so graceful it understand our fears and weaknesses before all else. A love that sees through our faces into our own heart which is desperate for it.

    Will I ever be able to truly love. How? Do we really care what happens to our enemies? Do we wait for someone to repentance or be destroyed before we do good to them? Are we participating in someones destruction? Does it not say in scripture that it is God’s kindness leads us to repentance? How do we demonstrate kindness to people?

    King David hated his enemies but he was wrong. Jesus said love your enemies. The problem many Christians have is WE don’t know what loving our enemies means. We have exchanged love for hate in the form of mutual condemnation and don’t even realize it.

    Father forgive ‘US’ for we know not what we do, help me to forgive.

    “O God, the Father of all, whose Son commanded us to love our enemies: Lead them and us from prejudice to truth; deliver them and us from hatred, cruelty, and revenge; and in your good time enable us all to stand reconciled before you; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.”

  30. “John” can spout all the bible verses he wants to, and “Pastor Raymond” can pray for the lost souls with all the sanctimonious bravado he can muster, but let either one of them have a child who discovers they are gay and we’ll see how sanctimonious they remain.

  31. I at once pray that those who are most anti-LGBTQ have a child who is LGBTQ, and pray that they don’t. There are enough victims of their ‘disagreement with the lifestyle’ and ‘speaking the truth in love’, the worst thing that could happen to an LGBTQ child is if they were unfortunate enough to be born into their households. I’ve made meals for homeless LGBTQ kids–I don’t want to see their numbers rise. I’d like to not have to make them meals because they’ve been thrown out of their homes. I’d much rather have them come hang out at my house because they live at home and are hanging out with my kids!

    • Amy, you are so right. At least 40% of homeless youth are LGBTQ2+, kicked out of their homes by parents who”love” their children by spurning them. In the Province of Ontario, we now have a foster care agency geared specifically towards finding suitable, supportive foster parents for these youth.

  32. I agree Anonymous

    I will repeat what I said above:

    There is no requirement in the Bible for LGBTQ people to become straight.

    I know a little of the ex-gay world. When I had trouble with reconciling my sexuality to my faith and I could not see being gay as right I sought support. I met someone who was Ex-gay and he gave me materials to read and videos to watch.
    Ex-gay proponents ask gay people to follow a ‘made up’ methodology. People go to them with the belief they are the experts.

    From what I saw it is behaviour modification not spiritual transformation. Those with sexual addictions are helped but being gay is not an addiction nor is it a compulsion. Being a lesbian is part of the fabric of who I am. If the thread is pulled out, I am afraid I will untangle. Yet ironically I was told this is what is required of me.Ex-gays want to destroy the gay part of you.

    It takes years and years of self constraint and self absorption to deny being gay and maintain it. As well most of the successful people make a ministry out of it, they speak about it, make support groups about it, cut people out of their lives because of it, turn their backs on LGBTQ rights because of it.

    Ex-Gays choose to use a method of deny, deny, deny and ‘kill the desire’. Then replace it with things to distract you.

    Killing parts of yourself is self harm. We deaden parts of ourselves. and we don’t ever become fully alive. It cause distress and anxiety and self loathing. The only way to deal with living a life like that is to build high walls around yourself with select people who strengthen you in your denial of self. It’s a supreme ongoing effort.

    There seems to be a group of people who have been successful but I find those ex-gays to be the most condemning of gays. I could not bear being around the suspicion and hostility ex-gays have towards those that affirm same sex marriage and LGBTQ people.

    It is a choice to be ex-gay and should never be made mandatory nor required of developing children and teenagers because they are not ready to make those choices before they have even fully matured.

    Be forewarned what you are getting yourself into before you make the choice to be Ex-gay. You will have to train like an Olympic athlete in order to survive. That is your burden not your freedom.

    I believe God has shown grace to those who choose the Ex-gay path in his mercy and deep understanding of our inability to reconcile our faith with who we are. God is good to all.

    • I think about it this way. Science is well on the way to proving that sexual orientation is something that you are born with. It comes as part of your creation. Science has also observed that different sexualities exist in plants, animals, insects, birds, fish, etc. It is entirely natural and normal, and part of the created order. (There are benefits to having extra people around to help with the hunting and gathering, to help with the child minding, to help with tending frail elders.) If we try to pray away the gay, if we try to imitate behaviours that deny our natural sexuality, we are declaring to God that the way that God made us is inadequate. That God’s purpose in creating us was flawed. It puts us above God.

      • Patricia, I wonder about that. I saw a documentary on the Fa’afafine in Samoan society who are considered a third gender. Born male but enjoy female tasks. They contribute in households working along side women. They are not alienated from society as outcasts. They aren’t asked to become more masculine or change themselves in order to be accepted. So it made me think there is a whole world and range of gender that the traditional sex ethic and ontological view misses entirely.

        I wonder if God allowed for diversity and the only thing truly broken is our love for each other.

        • Polynesian culture has always had men who took on female roles and dress–usually a second son was raised as a girl. In French Polynesia, they’re called Rae Rae’s. I saw lots of them when we were there. The tradition didn’t seem to flourish in Hawaii, probably from the huge missionary influence. I find it harder here to have a gay daughter than in Seattle, at least when it comes to finding a church where she will be welcome.

          • Amy, thank you for how fiercely you love your daughter in the face of prejudice. It’s beautiful. You are truly courageous. I was a teenager in the 1970’s and my mom knew I was different before I understood myself. She tried to communicate to me that she supported me and she was okay with who I was. But the culture of the time made it difficult for me to believe her and made me stay in the closet for many years. So I understand how difficult it is to face bigotry and hate. Keep telling her ‘ that no matter what others say she is beautiful the way she is’. Hugs and love to you!

            • Bigotry and hate? Be real. It should be the right of anyone, who believes the Bible to not endorse homosexual practice. That is not hate or bigotry. It is faithfulness to the Scriptures. I know people who have gay children. And, they love them. But, it is possible to be welcoming and faithful to God’s Word.

    • Oh, John the commenter, Paul Inberea and Raymond why do you distort the truth and push your agenda? The Bible never mentioned gay people, only straight. You must believe that gay people are not born. Is that correct? You can argue about this here (as you do), but you are not in the right environment, of those such as yourself, who wish to control others in the name of God. You are only here to do damage control for your own beliefs as people become educated on what the Bible really says. You have been rebuked here by good, educated, God loving people. It is clear that your only reason here is to protect your perverted way of preaching. Your vile words of declaring sin against others do nothing to show Jesus and his love for all. Cast out your sin and repent before it is too late. Do not cover your discussions with the essence of righteousness as if they were worthy of debate. You serve no purpose here, except blocking the path to God! If you truly studied the word, opened your heart to the Spirit which God has given, you would be aware of your sinful ways. As a child of God, I rebuke you! Your opinions of God are nothing more than that, an opinion. You have not been anointed with the Spirit of Discernment. I will pray for you brother. I hope that you will go into prayer and open your heart to the true meaning of the word.

      • I find it ironic that you think you have the truth and no one else has. I’ve studied the Bible. I know what it says. That’s why people like John are so dangerous. He feeds people the lie that God loves their sin. He does not. He loves them to lead them to repentance.

        • John, you can study a mistranslation of a book from now until kingdom come and will NEVER fully understand the message that was in the original version. And that is ALL you have done: You have studied seriously flawed translations of the Bible, NOT the original.
          Did you know that there is not a single Greek manuscript of the New Testament that says the Word was “with God” in John 1? Did you know that Colossians 1:19 in Greek mentions neither God nor the Father, but half of all English Bibles mention one or the other? Did you know that 1 John 5:7, as found in KJV, NKJV and KJV21, is a known fraud, a made-up verse not found in ANY ancient Greek manuscript of the New Testament, nor in any of the early Latin translations?
          Did you know that there is no such word as sodomite in the Hebrew and Greek? Did you know that Sodom and Gomorrah were not the real names of those cities, but were nicknames given after they were destroyed? Did you know that two other cities were destroyed the same day in the same manner, and that a third almost met the same fate?
          Did you know that nobody in the Bible was named James, despite the fact that our Bibles give that name to two men? (James is the anglicized version of the Gaelic Seamus, a name that did not exist in first century Israel/Judea. Those men were actually named Jacob (Ya’akov), which is not linguistically related to James or Seamus. It was changed to James by translators to flatter the King. Later translators didn’t change it back because, while it would have been more honest, it would have caused significant confusion. So James became the standard, but to show the connection, things connected to King James are called Jacobean.)
          This is just a sample… Our English Bibles are full of mistranslations and vague translations, designed to make the English Bibles support the teachings of the churches that sponsored the early translations.

          You know what the Bible says. Do you know what it is SUPPOSED to say? What it said BEFORE the translators altered it to reflect church doctrines?

          • “Reverend?, c an you please hurry up and re-translate the bible into the correct version, and then disseminate it to all christian churches across the globe!
            Make sure you indicate very clearly that this new version is THE CORRECT one, and also make sure all previous versions are done away with, along with all the studies from previous “men and women of God” – because they have got everything wrong. You should also set up your own church whilst you are at it, so you can make sure that every one who attends is getting the correct theology, which is completely inclusive and liberal, and requires no effort whatsoever -just believe and be yourself! We’re all on a sliding scale -and anything is permissible. Sure – God may have made man and woman in His image and they were made for each other – but that doesn’t matter now. Because after “SIN” entered the world, it didn’t affect sexuality, or biology in ANY WAY. LOVE conquers all! It doesn’t matter WHO you love – all that matters is LOVE!
            Freddy is part of an increasing group of marginalised people who have a strong attraction to young boys of 12 years of age. In fact – he’s formed a strong bond of LOVE with Aiden – who is just that age. They fight to control their sexual desires but they cannot work out why they cannot be together – because after all – they LOVE each other!
            Samuel is part of an increasingly large group of people who are attracted to people who change their sex organs to represent the opposite gender. – but God does not mind in the slightest. because Jesus never talked about it, and as long as there is LOVE, then we can love who we want .

            NEWSFLASH FOR EVERYONE IN THIS THREAD:
            Everything you have ever known or been taught about God and sexuality up until this point IS WRONG. God is PRO Homosexuality. It is part of HIS DESIGN.

            • Newsflash for you: Your sarcasm is a direct indication of your lack of rational thought.
              Oh, and by the way, I published a modern English translation of one New Testament manuscript many years ago. It does not do away with other versions. It merely offers some corrections.
              What are you, twelve?

  33. The question is irrelevant. There are all kinds of lifestyles in all cultures among all people all over the world and across history. People can be homosexual, lesbian, bi, whatever….but any sex outside of marriage between a man and a woman is defined as sin by God in the Bible and by Jesus as well. Lifestyle isn’t the problem; sexual behavior is. Is it a struggle to remain celibate as a homosexual? Certainly. Is it a struggle to remain celibate as a single heterosexual? Certainly. Is it a struggle to remain monogamous in marriage? Certainly. I struggle every day with sin, with my own “thorn in the flesh” as Paul described his struggle. Sexual sin is sin like any other, and the struggle will be difficult, but we are all here in a fallen world, born with a sin nature, redeemed through the blood of Christ and enabled by the Holy Spirit to overcome our sinful desires. Regardless of how we were born. Without the struggle against sin, why would we need God?

    • There is a huge difference between remaining celibate until you find and marry your spouse, and being asked to remain celibate for your entire life… asked by people who would never consider such a thing for themselves.
      There are VERY few people on earth who can live in celibacy for life. God Himself said it was not good for man to be alone. People like you put gay people in an impossible situation: You expect them to either be celibate for life, which is simply not realistic or possible for most, or to marry someone of the opposite sex, which feels completely unnatural for them, feels disgusting, and for many, isn’t even possible, as they simply cannot function sexually when they are so turned off. (Not to mention that you would be asking them to cheat their opposite sex spouse out of something they have a right to: a spouse who is attracted to them.)
      You expect of gay people something you would never dream of doing yourselves: either living a life of celibacy or marry someone to whom you have zero sexual attraction, where even the thought of being sexually intimate is revolting. You wouldn’t do that. Stop trying to make gay people do it.

      • This would all be true if we worshiped an impotent God. We don’t. The same power that raised Jesus from the dead is on offer. Most just don’t believe it. There are those who have the courage to trust God is sufficient to walk in celibacy. See Wesley Hill ‘s book Washed and waiting. God can also change attractions to be natural rather than unnatural. This requires counseling and commitment to study God’s Word. Some have the courage to do that and I’ve seen the fruit.
        God can work transformation and give supernatural strength. Apparently your God is not capable. Mine is.

        • Good for you John. That is true. God is a powerful healer. Jesus spent his life healing people.

          And what if you come to God and ask to be healed and God says I have all the power in the world to make you something you were never meant to be, I accept and love you the way you are. You are unique and precious to me. I would rather give you more love, more wisdom, more peace than tamper with who you are.

          In some cases people need the counselling and healing in other cases we are tampering with people’s lives. It takes wisdom to know the difference. God is good.

          • God CAN do anything. But that doesn’t mean He will, or that He thinks it’s necessary. For centuries, the church taught that being left-handed was demonically inspired, and persecuted lefties. Obviously, it was ignorance, and hand-dominance is genetic (although, even after decades of research, we still have not fully identified the genes involved.) And many lefties, because of church teaching, forced themselves to use their right hand. Even as a boy, I recall teachers discouraging use of the left hand. But no matter how much a left-handed person prayed and begged God to change him to be “normal” and make him right-handed, God wasn’t going to honor that prayer. Why not? Because there is nothing wrong with being left-handed, and the church had simply made an error, a glaring one, in regard to human biology, and thought God backed them up on it. This is absolutely no different than sexual orientation. The church is in error, and has been for several centuries. (Just as there is no evidence the first century church had a problem with left-handed people, there is no evidence in the Hebrew and Greek texts of the Bible that they had a problem with homosexuality. These ignorant prejudices came much later.) The church has misunderstood biology, not for the first time, and has decided that God agrees with them. And beginning four hundred years ago, they began to alter the Bible to support their claim. They now persecute gay people the way they persecuted left-handed people, and worse. And they convince many gay people to try to live celibate, or convince them to enter into unhappy, sham marriages with someone of the opposite sex. Or they subject them to emotion, spiritual, psychological, and even physical torture in an effort to “convert” them to heterosexuality. (I could tell you stories from ex-gay ministries that would curl your hair.) But no matter how much a gay person cries out to God to make him a heterosexual, it is NEVER, NEVER going to happen. Why not? Because there is nothing wrong being a homosexual, and the church is in error. YOU, John, are in error. You are following in the ignorant footsteps of the church of the past when the persecuted left-handed people, when they persecuted people with red hair (which they also said was demonic), when they misused scripture to justify first slavery, then segregation and discrimination against people who were not white, etc. It’s ignorance, it’s darkness, and it’s unfortunate that the church never seems to outgrow it; they always seem to need a victim, someone who is “different,” a minority to persecute and condemn. I have absolutely NO doubt that if you had lived prior to the Civil War that you would have been one of those who justified slavery of Africans on the misguided notion that scripture taught they were cursed by God and it approved of slavery. You might even have been one of those ignorant people who claimed Africans didn’t have souls! Different century, different target, same ignorance, same misuse of scripture to demonize and hurt people for being who they are.

  34. This thread has been such a sad mess. I have wondered why John Pavlovitz allows all of this squabbling at The Table. Most fundie websites tolerate no dissent whatsoever. Then it occurred to me. John allows fundies to come her with hate and axes to do their worst—and in doing so show their true colors so all men and women of faith, discernment, balance, and good sense can see them plainly for the “pearl trampling swine” that they really are. They are just like Vladimir Lenin said about capitalists: “Sell them enough rope, and they will be sure to hang themselves with it.”

      • I agree with you, Charles–as to why John P. allows it. Although, the constantly repeated attacks seems to distract from the safe zone that I use to feel here. I see more “smooth talking” fundies than before, and I wonder if they are being paid by a super PAC. They are right here verbalizing on the comment section as soon as a post comes out. I am grateful for all the wonderful, educated, and wise people here, such as you and all the others who faithfully keep this blog on track.

  35. Maybe people can help me out with this debate. For those who believe homosexuality to be a sin, can you please point to specific places in the scriptures where you find this to taught? And then we can all discuss our views about those passages.

    For those who believe homosexuality is inborn and unchangeable, I ask: What is wrong with celibacy?

  36. Celibacy is a calling. The American church idolizes marriage and family, and that doesn’t leave much space for people who are single and celibate. Many churches are woefully inadequate to meet the needs of singles, so many are quite lonely.

    Humans are made for relationship, it’s not good for us to be alone. So celibacy is fine if it’s temporary while waiting for a spouse, but you at least have hope for the future. Permanent celibacy is a very difficult road not meant for someone who isn’t called to it. I’m sure for those called to be celibate, they have joy and do fine. But ask anyone who is yearning for a spouse how they feel about celibacy.

    • I had a gay friend who was very committed to his church. He chose to maintain celibacy, not because it was a calling, but because it was the only way he could stay in community and he had been taught that it was e only way to stay right with God. But even though he was celibate and chaste and faithful to church doctrine, his church community denied him full membership. He plugged along for years, being the best Christian he could be as his church understood it, and was never fully accepted. He ended his life when he couldn’t take it anymore.

      The new commandment, or as I call it, the prime directive, is to love one another. I fail to see how denying people life-giving relationship demonstrates love.

  37. What do you think of Gay Porn? Is it wrong? Is it right? Should christians watch porn and if not, why not and if so why?

    • When a person watches porn, they are, in effect, “using” the people in it for their own sexual gratification. It seems to me that using people, even with their consent, is not consistent with loving them. And we are called to love all people.
      I’m not the morality police and I am not going to question the viewing habits of others, or condemn anyone for it, but that’s just my thought on it, totally separate from the issue of lust.

    • Of course not. Gay porn, straight porn, any porn takes something that God has made and denigrates it. At its best it exploits and objectifies and at its worst it is sinister and evil. If anyone says yes, I’ll be curious to see the rationale.

  38. Too many threads to figure out where this goes, so I post here:

    I’ve grown very weary of this “conversation” because it is nothing more than cyber bullying by a “know it all” who actually knows very little but spreads his misinformation anyway. So get this straight please (and there is no pun intended there):

    Sexual orientation is not a choice for anyone. If it is for same-gender attracted folks then it would have to be for opposite gender attracted folks as well. To my straight friends: When did you decide to be straight? The answer will be a dumbfounded look.

    God isn’t there to fix our world or take care of everything. That was never promised anywhere in Scripture. The only promise we got was that we would not make the journey of life alone….God would always be with us. We would not be creatures of the miracle of life if we were programmed with what we would do and God would control all. There is no miracle in that.

    All Scripture has been translated and interpreted and most through the lenses of males who held power and viewed women as lesser beings. The current 66 books, to repeat, were the result of a vote at a council of Nicaea around 400 AD or CE. Some books made the cut others did not. Clearly that should make us think about what some want to be inerrant. The stereotyping of gay men in particular as “effeminate” allowed them to try and exercise the same bigotry over them. Note that I am 6’1” tall and weigh between 170 and 175 and can take care of myself and would dearly love to engage some of the hyper-males who spout so much nonsense. I’ve always passed for straight and used that to a great educational advantage. Although now it would be a rare person in my spheres of influence who did not know I was a gay man…..and a practicing Christian at that!

    You cannot change someone’s sexual orientation. Let me repeat, you cannot change someone’s sexual orientation. What you can do is use negative reinforcement, i.e., shocks to the genitals, to get someone to not respond to same sex pictures and the like. They haven’t changed orientation. They may have changed response and even that is not permanent. The founders of Exodus International later denounced the ministry as a fraud. Ask someone who has “changed” what their sexual fantasies are about even while engaged with someone of the opposite sex. Their fantasies remain about their own gender if they are honest. Let’s stop driving folks to suicide with this absurd notion that they can change.

    Celibacy is a calling. You don’t enforce it on someone. Those who live celibate lives do so by choice. By the way, the term only means that they are not married. It doesn’t refer to sexual activity that may or may not be taking place. Chaste would be a better term.

    Human sexuality is a gift from God and it was not and is not intended solely for procreation. If that were the case, humans would go into “heat” like the other mammals. Think about what arouses you: the facial expressions and contours, the touch of hair and skin, the smell, communication and a myriad of other things that delight the human senses. Those of us who are attracted to our own gender experience those same things….it isn’t unique to straights. Get over these issues that there cannot be sexual compatibility with a same gender couple. No where in Scripture does it define sexual positions or activities. The so-called “missionary position” with the man on top is a creation of weird men, not of God. Do we really think God has an interest in our sex lives? That would be a puny God with poor priorities.

    At various times in history people have been condemned for being different. You have already been reminded of when being left handed was considered evil. The Latin word “sinestra” generally means left and provides the root word for sinister. We tried to force people into being right handed. We ultimately learned to leave that issue alone.

    Remember that human sexuality is a not well studied topic. Ancient rules stigmatized couples who were sterile or barren. Men with deformed genitalia could not be Hebrew priests or serve in the temple. What a load of crap. These people were not evil, they were just different.
    So I think it is time for John (not Pavlovitz) to return to his closet.

    It’s time for the rest of us to continue to proclaim the saving grace provided through the Gospel of Jesus Christ who gave us a new commandment: We are to love one another as He loved us. Please note that Jesus provided no exceptions, exclusion or conditions….just love. If you are honest about what you see in the ministry of Jesus, you will see that what he roundly condemned were any relationships that were abusive, coercive or exploitive. So if you are a married heterosexual male and you are abusing, coercing, or exploiting your wife, sexually or any other way, you are committing great sin. Relationships that do not include abuse, coercion or exploitation are worthy of God’s blessing and our honoring of that blessing.

    Here endeth the lesson!

    P.S. – LGBT folks can procreate and leave a legacy. I know dozens of same gender couples who have had children. Obviously female couples can get pregnant through artificial insemination. Male couples use a surrogate. Both sometimes adopt. I certainly hope you will not denigrate the children of same gender couples with your ignorance and attitude. Do some research. Learn something…from a primary source, not from hearsay or repetition of ignorant foolishness.

  39. *applause

    Thank you. Especially with regards to legacy. As soon as I read that moronic thought, my mind went to the gay couple I know who fosters teens and then pays for their university. They are creating quite an amazing legacy! I hope one day my daughter also has children and creates her own beautiful legacy. She is one of mine–she’s beautiful, intelligent, plays a mean cello and will go out and do something good in this world despite all of those who insist she’s somehow broken or defective.

  40. As is often the case, John’s (not Pavlovitz) thoughts and his supporters sound more like Jews living under the law of Moses instead of Christians who have been redeemed by the blood of Jesus Christ. It is clear that they can only grasp something that tells them exactly how to live, what to do and what not to do. They must have a list of rules for living that divides things into right and wrong, yes and no, can do and cannot do. There is no area for interpretation, the input of experience or reason, much less the work of the Holy Spirit. There are no gray areas for them. That is neither life nor is it the message of Jesus Christ.

    How many times must it be pointed out that Scripture cannot be taken as bits and pieces out of context of culture of writing and out of context of a complete narrative? How many times must it be pointed out how very little of Scripture is remotely related to human sexuality?

    Again, Jesus was about relationships, right relationships….about righteousness. He condemned the religious authorities of His day for doing exactly what the folks who support John (not P) are trying to do.

    What is this obsession with LGBT issues? What LGBT folks do in the privacy of their homes has no relationship to your own salvation. Your job is not to save anyone. That responsibility belongs to Jesus alone and He completed that responsibility on a cross at Calvary some 2,000 years ago. We have only one Saviour and the role has been filled.

    Have any ever read the letter attributed to James? Talk about hitting us where social justice issues live! That author has no patience with empty religion. He understood that we are saved by grace and grace alone. He also understood that what should flow from that salvation is good works. He understood what doing unto others as we would have done to us means. He understood what Jesus meant when he told us to love one another as He had loved us.

    We live with many “ism’s” in the world today. They include racism, sexism, classism, heterosexism (or homophobia), ableism and many other ways to discriminate and denigrate the children of God. All of those isms are based on fear fuels by ignorance. When we allow ourselves to peel away the label we have affixed to someone’s face, then we may begin to see the face of Christ in all of God’s wonderful creation.

    Any who wish are certainly free to behave as Jews living under the Law of Moses. But please stop trying to pass that off as Christianity…..because it is not. Love casts out fear. Instead of fearing people who are different from you, why not learn about them. We all discover that we have far more in common than in differences when we follow that route instead of always condemning others.

  41. I think my question from a couple of days ago was misunderstood. I had asked proponents of the view that homosexual acts are evil to cite specific scriptural passages so that we could discuss them. Clear enough.

    My question to those who argue that t homosexuality is natural is why not accept your orientation, but lead a celibate life?

    • Why should anyone live a celibate life, unless he or she feels a specific call to celibacy? Very few people are called to that, certainly not most of the millions upon millions of gay people. Celibacy should only be considered an option to those called to it. Nobody’s sexual orientation should force them to consider celibacy.

      • That are not forced to celibacy. They have three choices, two of them Godly. celibacy (singleness makes them more free for kingdom work), Through counselling and prayer they can right their sexual orientation to the one God intended (then they could be in a Biblical marriage, or they can move outside of God’s will and pursue a homosexual lifestyle. I know same sex strugglers in all three camps. The third are, by far, the most miserable. Understandably so.

        • Marriage to someone you are not attracted never leads you to change your orientation. You may love the person more because you make a life together but if you truly are gay you will never want to initiate sex with them for yourself but for them and you never want sex with them, which is miserable, wrong and unfair to them.

          • I was in a opposite sex marriage and choosing to comment anonymously out of respect for my former husband. None of this was his fault.

        • No amount of prayer and counseling will alter a person’s sexual orientation. I KNOW!
          The most miserable people are those who are trying to change their sexual orientation, followed only by those who force themselves to be celibate when they realize they cannot change their sexual orientation.
          Happiest are those who accept who they are, reconcile with it, and live their lives as Christian gay people. Again, I KNOW!
          When you tell people God will change their sexual orientation, you are giving them false hope and lying to them. Again, I KNOW!

          • You apparently know everything, except humility. It “I know” means you, then N=1. I can point to many other examples of changes lives. sadly, most do not have the courage. That does not mean it is not true. Just that they give up. Sad. There is victory.

            • There are many things I don’t know, and when I don’t know something, I will freely admit it. When it comes to this, however, I DO know. I have decades of experience in this area, and know first hand what God does and does not do when it comes to people’s sexuality. I also know first hand the evil that some Christians do to gay people to try to make them conform to the norm.

            • I have several girl friends I love but don’t want to marry. What’s the point here? friendship love and romantic love are different things.

              • The point is that deep, intimate friendships between same sex friends can exist without the sin of homosexual sex. Sadly, many just want sex, not relationship.

                • Thanks, John. I have been studying the way you phrase things for awhile now. Help me understand.

                  When you say, “sadly many just want sex”; the way I take your comment above is that you think, ‘sex’ is what gay people think about first and it colours all their thoughts and interactions with people.

                  What if sex is not what I think about all the time? What if I think about making friends without sexualizing them?

                  And one day this beautiful women touches all the soft places in my heart and soul and makes me feel alive and it leads to a desire to unite with her. It is not primarily sexual but all of the above. It is relational.

                • The problem is the sexualization. It is not wrong to have deep same sex friendships. If you read the Bible that is part of God’s design. The Bible say that Jonathan and David had a friendship as intimate as marriage. But sexual intimacy is not on offer. That is not part of God’s design. I understand that relationships are not just about sex ( but for some gay men, it is) but same sex relations are not in God’s plan.

                  • jose, Thank you, thank you, thank you, for finally saying something I can connect with. This is a good place to have a conversation. It is a place of understanding. It helps us to share how we experience our sexuality and be honest about it.

                    I have to agree with you there is a big problem with sexualization. And, this is how we get to places of addiction, obsession and abuse. I am sure many who are ssa experience a great deal of anxiety about their attractions and see them as contributing to their ongoing struggle.

                    For me I found that the struggling never helped me rather it made me miserable, unproductive and closed off to people. Once I let go of the worry and let my guard down…. nothing bad happened. In fact I thought less about my sexuality. I accepted it. I didn’t embrace another way of living I stopped worrying about it.

                    I think the hyper focus on ‘sex’ and ‘behaviour’ contributes to the ever growing anxiety within someone. It can wear a person down and make them unable to function at their best.

                    Keep in mind we are talking about all sorts of different people with various backgrounds and capacities. Not everyone can withstand the pressure of constant constraint and denial.

    • Joe what is the purpose of celibacy? Is it to avoid sex or is it to work for the Kingdom of God? Watch the Sound of Music again if you haven’t already. Maybe that can help answer your question. Maria was not well suited for being a nun even though she loved God with her whole heart. Then she found a family that needed her and was ready for all the gifts and energy she had to offer them.

      Sometimes we gay people find someone who needs us and we need them and there is a beautiful fit. We fit because we make each other stronger and more able to give back to a broken world. What God has joined together let no one separate. God knows our calling and heart and God answers.

  42. Would you lead a celibate life without being called to it? I think we fling the term around like its no big deal, but even God said that it’s not good for man to be alone. Think about what it would be to be forced into celibacy. To never hope for a spouse one day. And add to that the way the church handles single people (not all that well–singles groups are all geared towards meeting and marrying one day).

    I used to think the same way–that being gay was God’s way of telling a person they were called to celibacy. Then I began to use my brain and listen with an open heart to LGBT people. My daughter is gay. She dreams of a wife one day and children; she doesn’t feel the call to be celibate, so I will celebrate with her one day and accept another daughter into my family. Simple as that.

    • Hmm. God says it’s better not to be alone. Paul says celibate life is ideal. I think I’ll go with God.

      However, in Paul’s favour, he does put a caveat on that. Celibate life is ideal if you are called to it. If you can’t do it, that’s okay.

      • To reject Paul is to reject God, since he was inspired by God. But, most on here are not believers in the Bible. But, if you are not celibate, you need to be in a Biblical marriage (a man and a woman). Those are the only two Godly choices.

        • And I suppose to reject what you say, you think means I reject God as well? to agree with you is to agree with Paul is to agree with God? There is an explanation for the way you process your information it’s called the ‘Unreflective Thinker’

          Some people subscribe to the black and white, right vs wrong, literal interpretation of the Bible which is presented and never question it. This keeps them at stage one of Christian growth…. the seed in the shell that hasn’t yet burst open. Perhaps they lay on stony ground. Perhaps they need the ground around it to be broken up or tilled….add some nutrients and light and water.

          • Some people including God. What you say is the opposite of the truth. Those who know the Bible best are the most spiritually mature, not the infant Christians you claim. Have you never known an older person that had studied the Word of God their whole life? It spiritually transforms them. But, I get the impression you pick and choose what you want from the Bible. I don’t think that is maturity.

        • A biblical marriage, John? The most common form of marriage in the Bible was one man with more than one woman. Polygamy was ONLY forbidden to Jewish priests and Christian bishops and deacons. It was never forbidden to anyone else.
          A biblical marriage, John? There are two same-sex marriages recorded in the Hebrew Old Testament. God didn’t condemn either of those.
          I fully support a biblical marriage. I’m a fan of monogamy, so I encourage those who wish to marry to find one spouse… of whichever sex one is attracted to.

          • You misunderstand. The Bible defines marriage as a man and woman. There are no same sex marriages in the Bible. You have defined yourself as some expert all should bow to. No thanks. I’ll trust scholars. You are just trying to advance the gay agenda.

            • No, Jose, YOU misunderstand. Even in the vernacular translations, the most common form of marriage is polygamous. God NEVER condemned polygamy, and in certain instances, He actually required it: In the case of levirate marriage, if a man died without having children, his brother was required to marry his late brother’s widow to raise up children for his brother. It did NOT matter if the surviving brother already had a wife.
              Without polygamy, there would have been no 12 tribes of Israel. Without polygamy, King David’s lineage, the messianic lineage, would have ended with him, since his first wife had no children.
              And whether you know it or admit it, there are indeed same-sex marriages in scripture. They are plainly evident in the Hebrew text, and the translators had to alter scripture to hide them. If you read Hebrew, I will be happy to give you the particulars. If you don’t, it would be pointless to discuss the details, wouldn’t it?

                • Jose, please go to Genesis (and the rest of the Pentateuch). You will find that the patriarchs generally had more than one wife and it was not condemned anywhere. The 12 sons that begat the 12 tribes of Israel came from three wives.
                  If you read the book of Acts (properly The Acts of the Apostles) you will read that polygamy is forbidden in only two cases: for deacons and bishops. There was no prohibition against any one else.

                • Which specific scripture do you want? Do you want me to prove levirate marriage to you? Read the Torah (Genesis through Deuteronomy). Do you want me to prove that polygamy produced the 12 tribes and ensured the continuation of David’s line? Read both Samuels, both Kings and both Chronicles.
                  Do you want me to prove to you that same-sex marriage is recorded in the Hebrew text? Learn Hebrew and then come back. I can’t magically give you the ability to read it, can I? I can quote a verse for you, but what good would it accomplish? OK, here’s one:
                  וַיֹּמֶר שָׁאוּל אֶל־דָּוִד בִּשְׁתַּיִם תִּתְחַתֵּן בִּי
                  הַיּוֹם
                  That’s from 1 Sam. 18:21. Do you know what it says, or what the significance is? Do you understand how the English Bibles have altered the verse, and why?

                  • Rev Carey. Thank you for your many comments. I’m very intrigued by your references to an earlier scripture that included same sex marriages (with approval.) I couldn’t find any references online to these scriptures. Can you please provide some references?Thank you!

                    • He is so desperate to validate his own homosexuality within the Church that he goes to great lengths to prove the “validity”. But bogus things like saying David and Jonathan were homosexuals? That is absurd. And, shows his mental imbalance, to not understand that two men can have a strong love without it being sexual.

                    • John, I will trouble you not to make comments about my supposed mental imbalance… particularly when you are the one positively obsessed with the sex lives of people you don’t know.
                      By the way, John, I never teach anything I cannot absolutely prove with scripture in the original languages. I challenge you: if you can disprove what I say, do so. If not, well, you know what they say: Put up or shut up.

              • I would be interested to know what those verses are. I don’t read Hebrew, but I can find my around an interlinear. You have piqued my interest!

                • Sadly, he is just a revisionist, eschewing the the Word of God for a religion of his own making. He is not interested in God’s word, only in twisting things to lead people to believe that God is pleased by homosexual practice. He is not. It grieves Him because it is darkness and not Light.

                  • I find it fascinating that people who can read the bible in the original languages and understand the difference between what was written and what was translated are the ones being charged as revisionists. Surely, the revisionists are the people that insert words and meanings into their translations that do not exist in the original language texts.

    • True Joe, neither marriage nor celibacy are true ideals but ways in which we choose to live our lives relationally. If I had been set apart and had the opportunities as a young person to pursue a vocation in ministry I would have loved to do that.

      But my life did not afford me that opportunity. Instead people came into my life; and situations in which I learned about the love of Jesus though relationships both as a partner, a mother, a friend, a co-worker and so on.

      As a single lesbian I am living chaste while being open to a same sex relationship. I find if I keep my heart open and be true to who I am the pressure of performing is gone and I think less of my sexuality and more of how I can grow in grace and the knowledge of Christ.

  43. Funnily enough, John, it’s the openly gay people I know in loving relationships who are happier than those in hetero marriages. those in hetero marriages do love their spouses, but are always in a struggle to force some sort of attraction. It’s not uncommon for there to be very little sex at all. How is that at all fair to the straight spouse?

      • Some here have written that it’s impossible.

        Were I born homosexual (and I don’t know if it is inborn or not) it would be very hard, like being born with 12 toes or something. It would be hard because of society’s cruelty and exclusion which I totally oppose. Ultimately I would hope to see it as a gift and a calling, a calling to sublimate my sexual desires into something noble and beautiful. And then I would dance for joy at being a homosexual even though God’s path requires sacrifice. Sacrifice leads to joy.

  44. Okay I need to bow out of this conversation, and this time it’s permanent. All we are doing is snarling at one another and I am afraid with all the vitriol that is being spewed around, nothing positive is being accomplished.

    As the song says: “Haters gonna hate.”

  45. As I’ve pondered this whole discussion, I’ve begun to realize something important. We are pretty much a community of people who are supporting each other, but we’ve never met, never wept with each other, never wrapped our arms around each other. When someone enters into an online conversation with people whom they’ve never met and have never invested skin in the game of their lives, it’s really the wrong place to “speak the truth in love” as some have been trying to do. When they are simply words in a comment section from some random person from who knows where, they become knives that open wounds. Scripture that was never meant to kill someone becomes a weapon. This is so anti-christ, I can’t even handle it.

    Correction, speaking the truth in love, rebuking, all of that happens in communities where people have invested deeply in each other’s lives. Where roots of love and connection soften those difficult conversations. And where people know each other so well that they also know what God is doing in the other person. This forum is the last place where anyone should come and constantly point out perceived sin and continually use terms that they know are triggers for the wounded people who gain a shred of hope here.

    If those who are trying to correct us really are ignorant of the pain being caused, let me explain. Repeatedly using words like “lifestyle choice”, bringing up the six verses used to condemn LGBTQ people, calling them anything from perverts to outside of God’s design, HURTS. They wound. You may personally truly believe you are being loving. We are telling you emphatically that what you are saying again and again is not received as love at all. It’s received as barbs and stabs to already weary hearts that have taken thousands of such stabs from everyone else trying to “correct” us. That is the truth. In this forum, where there are NO deep, long relationships in real life, those words are NOT love. They are death. You may feel absolved because you’ve preached at us and said what you feel like you’ve been told to say, but rest assured, you have done more killing of souls. You are the resounding gongs spoken of in 1 Corinthians 13.

    We have told you over hundreds of posts now that you are hurting us, whether it be in angry responses or actually saying “this hurts–stop”, yet you continue to slash and cut. That is not Jesus. That is not Holy Spirit. Did Jesus specifically tell some to go and sin no more? Yep. That was Jesus. I’ve had encounters with Him, and His presence is enough to heal and set someone on the right path–your comments on this blog are nothing at all like the presence of Jesus.

    So please, just stop. If you truly love Jesus and follow scripture, you need to leave us be. Go and correct people you know and love deeply and personally (when Holy Spirit guides you), not people on the internet that you’ve never given the time of day to before. You are not showing love at all.

    • Or do you presume on the riches of his kindness and forbearance and patience, not knowing that God’s kindness is meant to lead you to repentance? Romans 4:2

  46. Show me where any kindness has been shown here from you guys? Again, keeping in mind what I stated above about language. You are commenting on a blog where people gather who need hope because they have been beaten up emotionally and spiritually by people who have no stake in their lives. It is NOT kindness to use terms that are triggers, nor is it kindness to correct someone you haven’t walked one step with in their journey.

    • I sense giant victim mentality. You are not victims. You are agents who have chosen a path outside of God’s will. So it is absurd for you to think you will be validated. There are some who are still faithful.

  47. I am personally straight, white and wealthy. I live in privilege. My daughter is gay. And I’m in a group of over 1000 Christian moms of LGBT kids. Every week I hear of one or two moms whose child has taken their life, or has been beaten or the parent of the LGBT child has been fired from a life-long pastoral position. The worst is hearing that these precious kids feel that God hates them and then walk away. Just one child dying physically or spiritually because of how the church treats them is too many. And Jesus had some stern words for those who caused harm to children.

    I find is sad that you claim Christ but have no mercy for those who hurt. Those are the people He would go to first. I see no kindness from you that would ever make me consider the god you serve. I have, however, met Jesus face to face. And have painted and dreamed with Holy Spirit. They are the kindest men I’ve ever met. Had my faith been based in arguments or being “correct”, it would have died ages ago from the appalling behavior I’ve seen from so many in the church.

    It’s clear that you’re here to flame people for some odd reason. Many of us are strong enough to take it and move on. Some who are reading are not. Do you want your words to be the ones that finally drive a person to kill themselves? Because that’s what happens.

    • Bless you Amy for taking the time out of your day to show compassion and be strong for us. We need those words to counter the others. I am grateful for your voice here.

    • Here is what I am talking about. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/religion/11299263/Christian-teenager-takes-her-own-life-over-misplaced-fears-about-telling-family-she-is-gay.html

      This child was a victim of the kinds of words that are being used liberally by people trying to tell us we are wrong to support and affirm our LGBTQ brothers and sisters. I wonder how much she was online, looking at how her orientation would be treated by Christians. Probably a lot because kids her age are constantly looking things up and reading. Had she stumbled upon these comments in this particular blog post, in that light, how do you think she would have taken the words spoken here? Would you ever say them to her out loud? Don’t say them online when you can hide behind a keyboard. Words matter. And they kill children all the time. If I seem angry, it’s because I AM. This could have been MY child. This could be YOUR child. I wish my world didn’t bring stories like this to me every week, but it does. So, yeah, I will absolutely stand up for those who don’t have a voice.

      And Kathy–love to you! I will stand and fight till my last breath, or until stories like this don’t happen anymore.

      • Thanks Amy we need more people like you who will speak up and do something, remember to take care of yourself it gets nasty sometimes !!????

  48. Here’s a question for you. If 2 gay men got together having had no previous partners, and then had a sexual relationship, would it be possible for them to contract any sexual diseases resulting from penetrative sex – ie Anal sex? If the answer is yes= than surely that indicates that anal sex is not a natural order of things -and that the penis and the vagina are the organs that are meant to go together?

    • Custer, the answer is yes. But…the answer is also yes for a straight couple that engages in “penetrative” sex either vaginally or anally. Surely you realize that straight people also engage in various sexual activities? And I hope you realize that nothing in Scripture describes what is “appropriate” sexual activity, whether positions or who does what to whom???? Why the obsession? Does it feed the hungry? Does it water the thirsty, clothe the naked, visit the sick or imprisoned? Which is more important? Which concern more correctly reflects a Christ-like care and attitude?

      • It is not possible for a monogamous heterosexual couple to contract sexually transmitted diseases if they have had no previous sexual history, nor any extra marital sex.
        The vast majority of heterosexual couples do not engage in anal sex as a matter of regular course.
        You missed the point of my question, rendering your points afterward, out of context.
        However – you answered the key question which is if a homosexual couple can contract a sexually transmitted disease from penetrative sex – even if they have not had a previous sexual history.

        Thereby we see that the natural order of things does not support homosexual sexual activity in the form of penetrative sex.

        • I believe Bruce misunderstood your question. It is NOT possible for a same-sex couple to contract a sexually transmitted disease if neither of them has had sexual contact before. Repeat, NOT possible.
          It also bears mentioning that there is NO sexually transmitted disease that can be transmitted by anal sex that cannot also be transmitted vaginally.
          Neither scripture nor nature proscribe any specific sexual acts. Anal sex is found not only in humans, but in a number of animal species. It isn’t something we invented. It’s simply one of many possible sexual variants, like oral sex.

      • It is important to point out things that are natural and unnatural. The variety of health risks associated with homosexual activity are one more validation that it is outside of God’s design.

        • John, as usual, you are a wealth of misinformation. It is impossible to call homosexuality unnatural because it exists throughout nature. That is the DEFINITION of natural. There are no health risks associated with homosexuality that cannot equally affect heterosexuals. Being gay does not cause disease, and there is not sexually transmitted disease that affects gay people that does not affect more straight people. (According to World Health Organization, 70% of HIV infections on earth were the direct result of heterosexual intercourse with an infected individual. In some third world nations, as much as a quarter of the heterosexual population is HIV+. In NO nation is that high a percentage of the gay population HIV+.)
          Outside of God’s design? Who the heck do you think created homosexuality? It is found in many hundreds of species. Among species that mate for life, there are same-sex pairs. Bonobos, biologically our closest relative, are 90% bisexual in the wild. Did they all invent that themselves? Or did they learn it from humans? Or is the devil giving the animal kingdom lessons on sex? Or, more realistically, did God created homosexuality to prevent overpopulation in the world?

          • As usual, you are pretending to be an expert in everything. Now you are a doctor and a biologist. As well as a pastor that has not gone to seminary. In fact, you are none of these things. Simply one that has chosen an ungodly way of life and has dedicated himself to proving that God is pleased with it. And leading others astray with the same untruth.
            I believe homosexuality is a mental condition, so any who choose it are in need of mental health service.
            Regarding “put up or shut up”I never claimed to be a Biblical scholar. that’s why I have read those who are. I would not put you in that category. And, none of them agree with you. So, even if you were on the same level, you would be outnumbered.
            But, you go on in your fantasy land and go on leading others down the path of darkness. But you will never get validation from Biblical Christians. That’s what you really want because part of the imbalance of homosexuals is a deep desire to be validated because they are insecure in the love of God and others.

            • You really are mentally ill, you know that, don’t you? First of all, I never said I was a pastor. Pastor is only one possible type of minister. Second, if you put half as much effort into reading my posts as you do into planning your next personal attack, you would know that I did go to seminary. In fact, I completed the course of theological training at TWO seminaries.
              You clearly only read scholars who agree with you. If you had anything close to an open mind, you would know that there are numerous scholars who agree with me.
              YOU believe homosexuality is a mental illness. That’s proof of your own. That you think you can declare something to be a mental illness when you have neither the proper education nor understanding of mental illness is very telling. Now let me tell you about mental illness: I spent most of my adult life working as a para-professional in the mental health field. I DO understand mental illness. I also understand that in order to be classified as a mental illness, something has to meet very specific criteria. Homosexuality meets NONE of those criteria, which is why it was removed from the list of illnesses… a list it was placed on incorrectly for ONLY twenty years, based on seriously flawed studies from the 19th century to the 1950s.
              Now, here’s where the put up or shut up comes in: You admit you are not a biblical scholar. You admit you cannot read the original languages of the Bible. But yet, you presume