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HolyGround >> Christian discussion on homosexuality...


4/21/10 3:56 PM
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Lahi
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Chuck Colson, Shane Claiborne, and a pastor I haven't heard of. I thought this was interesting. Colson seemed a little off on some of his points to me. I wish there had been someone like Jay Baker there to push the discussion a little bit further.
4/21/10 4:05 PM
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Lahi
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I wish I could say that I shared Colson's positive view of the church on this issue.
4/22/10 12:06 AM
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Lahi
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Is this place that dead now? I thought for sure this would get some interesting responses. I basically agree with the last 2 guys, and really liked Claiborne's response. Between friends and family I have seen a very personal side of this issue.

I would have been interested to hear how they would respond to someone like Jay Bakker, or Peggy Campolo.
4/22/10 9:28 AM
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CJJScout
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Wow. I haven't read the Barna book yet, but I have heard excellent things about it. I agree with Colson on the first stuff he says, but at the end I would disagree with him stringently.

There are some churches out there that are balancing the truth that homosexuality is a sin and against God's created order and lovingly welcoming a gay person to the church to hear the gospel. I would have to think those churches are in the minority.

For me personally, it took a rather long time for me to have a loving attitude towards gay folks. I always knew some gay folks but was repulsed by their lifestyle. It took several years of getting to know several personally for the Lord to soften my heart. Now, I have several friends that are gay and I love them dearly.

In a way, I feel pity for them. They are searching for a love that I don't think can be found outside of the created order. My love for them isn't based on pity, it is based on the fact that they are created in the image of God and need redemption the same as me.

While I do think that there are degrees of sin and some are worse than others (possible only in the earthly consequences), my sin separates me from God just as easily as theirs does.
4/22/10 3:24 PM
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Robert Wynne
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 What if G-D doesn't count your sins...will gay people be allowed in?
4/23/10 12:53 AM
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Lahi
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Edited: 04/23/10 1:00 AM
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Robert, I don't think He does. I think one reason I related to Shane Claiborne's answer was that to him being gay or not didn't seem to really be the issue as much as loving people, letting them know that God loves them unconditionally, and that they have a place in Christian communion (and the Kingdom here and now) now matter who they are.

I do thing that God cares about our sexuality, but I also think there tends to be a lot of hypocricy about how people in the church treat gay folks who aren't perfect, as opposed to us straight folks who aren't.

I thought Ridge had a great post when we were discussing this along time ago, when he shared the story of a gay man who came to an Orthodox priest (IIRC). He said he was interested in converting, but told the priest he was gay. The priest said "but you believe in the Holy Trinity?"

"Yes Father, but I'm gay."

"But you believe in the sacraments?"

"Yes Father, but I'm gay." And so on. IIRC, the man joined the church, took years before becoming chaste, but was accepted and loved. There was a bit more to the story, and I hope Ridge will correct me if I'm butchering this. Anyway that seems to me the way to love people who are struggling with anything, and we're all struggling with something.

I can also understand where gay affirming Christians are coming from. As important an issue as it may be, I believe there are more important ones. I still worship with Christians who are pro-war, or preach the prosperity gospel. I think they are off on those issues, but I can still see God working in their ministries. I'm sure I'm off on a lot of things too.
4/23/10 1:10 AM
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Lahi
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Edited: 04/23/10 1:45 AM
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Good post CJJScout.

I met up with a guy recently who I went to a Christian high school with, who had sat through 4 years of being told by teachers that God hated fags(literally), and that they were going to Hell. The whole time he was very strongly attracted to the same sex, but hid it. He ended up going to Seminary, thinking devotion to God would cure him. When that didn't work, he joined the military, thinking that would make him a man and give him the strength to go straight. After years if struggle he finally came out, and is now a very involved gay rights activist.

Hanging out with him and his friends (all gay) really made me see that for many people in that community, the idea of there being anything "wrong" with them is completely foreign. They honestly just don't get why Christians would think that.

I guess I mention that since I've always thought myself to be a pretty open-minded Christian on this issue, always had gay friends, and several family. But it never really hit home that many in the LGBT community are coming from such a very, very different place on this issue. I don't think a lot of us Christians have any idea just how far the gap between us and those in that community is, and there really shouldn't be one at all I don't think.

Not saying that's the case with you at all, just my experience.
4/23/10 9:45 AM
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CJJScout
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Edited: 04/23/10 4:28 PM
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I think God does care about homosexuality and sin and he does count them, Robert.

At the end, whether you are gay or straight it doesn't matter. What matters is what you do with Jesus. Is He your Lord and Savior? If so, that will come out in your actions and slowly you will be conformed to His likeness.

In brief, I think the bible is clear on a couple of points here:
1) Marriage is for man and woman
2) Sexual acts outside of marriage are sin

Therefore, sex outside of the context of marriage is bad for men and women regardless of the gender of the partner.

There are other warnings against homosexuality, but does it really matter? Sin is sin and separates us from God and as christians, we're supposed to love everyone regardless of race, gender, creed, religion, sexual preference, etc.

*edited for spelling and typos*
4/23/10 9:36 PM
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Lahi
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CJJ, I'm curious what you mean by God counting sins?
4/23/10 9:48 PM
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Lahi
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I guess my post was a little vauge. I see Christianity to be about God healing the sinner, and the world. I think sins matter, and do cut us off from Him, keep us from experiencing wholeness and healing. But I don't see God as demanding a certain standard of behavior before He accepts and forgives us...I think the change of behavior comes as a part of the healing process. That's what I was trying to get at.
4/23/10 10:46 PM
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Robert Wynne
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Lahi - Robert, I don't think He does. I think one reason I related to Shane Claiborne's answer was that to him being gay or not didn't seem to really be the issue as much as loving people, letting them know that God loves them unconditionally, and that they have a place in Christian communion (and the Kingdom here and now) now matter who they are.

I do thing that God cares about our sexuality, but I also think there tends to be a lot of hypocricy about how people in the church treat gay folks who aren't perfect, as opposed to us straight folks who aren't.
Lahi..yes, i do not think, that they being gay has any bearing on their place in Heaven, doesn't the christian bible teach that in heaven man will not know wife, as he does here in the flesh? which would lead me to believe that love is the important factor, as in love for your fellow child of G-D, no matter what there sexual preference is, because there is no sex in heaven and the flesh will matter no longer.
 
4/23/10 10:55 PM
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Robert Wynne
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CJJScout - I think God does care about homosexuality and sin and he does count them, Robert.

At the end, whether you are gay or straight it doesn't matter. What matters is what you do with Jesus. Is He your Lord and Savior? If so, that will come out in your actions and slowly you will be conformed to His likeness.

I understand.


If a person does accept Christ and lives a life after his example but was still gay, would they still be lost?

from my viewpoint i look at a gay person having sex with another gay person, and i look to see the sin, i see none,  King David kills a man to have his wife for sex, and after punishment, he is forgiven.

Can the gay person not recieve the same forgiveness?
4/24/10 12:36 PM
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Ridgeback
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Lahi,

You got the story right.  I will have to give this video a view when I get a chance.  


4/24/10 9:50 PM
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Lahi
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Be curious what you think Ridge.
4/24/10 11:24 PM
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CJJScout
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Robert, gay folks having sex with each other is sin no matter how you slice it. Romans 1 (amongst other passages) makes that clear. Of course there can be forgiveness for this sin but it has to be asked for and David repented, another key ingredient. God doesn't look at our sin and say, "Don't worry about it, you sinned in love therefore it doesn't count."

Lahi, I'd agree with you that we only come to God as sinners. We don't have to have a certain set of behaviors to come to Christ and receive grace, if we did we would never get it cause we never measure up to the perfect standards of the law. Sin separates us from God. Period. Because of that separation, we need a Savior to bridge the gap for us and that is where Jesus comes in.
4/26/10 1:40 AM
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Juijitsuboxer
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I believe Gay people can have the same forgiveness that King David had for Murder and Adultery. I think someone can be Christian and be gay and fall many times to the sin by having homosexual sex and will have no problem coming into communion with God. Many Christians who truly love the Holy Trinity and want to love and please God end up having sex outside of marriage, cheating on their wife, stealing, etc.

Many people love the Lord and continue in a sin only to find out later that it is a sin and change that aspect of their life. It does not mean they were not in communion with God. Some people are cleaned up of their sinful activities slowly because most of the time they do not know it is even a sin they are committing, weather in thought or in action.

That is why the Bible says that Teachers will be judged much more harshly and that Decons and Bishops are to be held to a high standard, where all of their personal life is observed to be as free of sin as possible. I believe those statements show that Christians will act in and out of sin to different degrees and that God understands that. He offers us forgiveness.

I only worry for people who have heard and been told that certain lifestyle choices are sinful, certain activities are sinful, that they should not be doing them, etc.

Sometimes after hearing those messages it takes time for the behavior to change or to understand that those lifestyle choices are sinful and wrong and should be changed. But there are many that say they follow Christ and say their lifestyle choices are not sinful, that they are pleasing to God just like a Man and a woman in a marriage are pleasing to God. I honestly have no opinion about those people, I do not know how God judges them.

All i know is that all sexual activity outside of a marriage is sinful. Marriage is only between a man and a woman.

Many people will die in sin with a long list of sins they have committed that they did not even know is sin. But they love Jesus and know him as their hope and savior and I believe will be welcomed into the kingdom. Does this apply to homosexuals who say that God is happy that they are having promiscuous sex with numerous partners or even monogamous homosexual relationships? I have no idea. The Bible seems to say that people living in a sin will not see the kingdom. I think it means people who decide to take that sin over God, saying, I am going to live this way weather God likes it or not because I am happy. I do not believe that situation applies to homosexuals who believe God is pleased with their activity.
4/26/10 4:07 AM
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Ridgeback
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 I think Colson wasn't owning up to a real PR problem that doesn't just stem from taking a stand on same sex acts being a sin.  He also seems to imply that heterosexual sexual relationships are largely unproblematic instead of also being beset with all kinds of sin and failure.  Even married sex can be fallen in any number of ways that destroy communion.  A man who uses his wife to masturbate himself is dehumanizing her.

I agree with the other gentleman about the political thing.  I believe that when Christians try to legislate morality for the larger culture they are making a big mistake.  People have to have the freedom to screw up and then they need to see a stark difference within the church vs. without.  Instead, we tend to be just like the outside culture in terms of things like abortion and divorce rates, but we try to legislate against them.  Of course Christians are going to be seen as hypocrites in this sense.

Following on what Colson stated, I think Evangelicals and fundamentalists are so enamored with marriage as a normative thing that they try to change homosexuals into heterosexuals instead of offering celibacy as a viable alternative.  As the man in dreads pointed out, lots of people are called to celibacy in the church and traditions that don't have a place for these people and see them as oddballs or outcasts will have very little to offer a person struggling with same sex attraction.

There will always be a tension between Christianity and the sexual norms of the larger culture, but that intersection should only take place at the level of a person volunteering to join the church.  If he does that then he is called to live a Christian life sexually.  But trying to extend that to those outside the church is not going to help anybody.
4/28/10 1:27 AM
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toldhimthat1yr ago
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Ridgeback -  Following on what Colson stated, I think Evangelicals and fundamentalists are so enamored with marriage as a normative thing that they try to change homosexuals into heterosexuals instead of offering celibacy as a viable alternative.  As the man in dreads pointed out, lots of people are called to celibacy in the church and traditions that don't have a place for these people and see them as oddballs or outcasts will have very little to offer a person struggling with same sex attraction.


do you think the man with dreads was talking about a gay man when he spoke of his mentor being celibate for 50 years? (6:20 in the vid)

Do you think a gay celibate man is trustworthy around children unsupervised?
4/28/10 2:07 AM
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Ridgeback
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toldhimthat1yr ago - 
Ridgeback -  Following on what Colson stated, I think Evangelicals and fundamentalists are so enamored with marriage as a normative thing that they try to change homosexuals into heterosexuals instead of offering celibacy as a viable alternative.  As the man in dreads pointed out, lots of people are called to celibacy in the church and traditions that don't have a place for these people and see them as oddballs or outcasts will have very little to offer a person struggling with same sex attraction.


do you think the man with dreads was talking about a gay man when he spoke of his mentor being celibate for 50 years? (6:20 in the vid)

Do you think a gay celibate man is trustworthy around children unsupervised?

 I have no idea.  I think his main point was that a life of celibacy is treated as odd in the Evangelical community rather than accepted and even celebrated.  Both Jesus and Paul presented it as an option.  

I think that some people with pedophilia issues try to hide among the clergy.  This is patently clear with all the abuse issues in the CC.  I don't think any adult can be trusted alone with children.  It is a sad commentary, but anybody who believes children are perfectly safe alone with some married guy, but not a celibate guy who struggles with same sex attraction is being woefully naive.  There does seem to be some kind of link to homosexuality and pedophilia in the sense that 35% of all pedophilia cases involve same sex abuse and yet homosexuals only make up 2-3% of the population.   So no a gay celibate man is not trustworthy, but neither is a married straight man.  That is why our parish has signs up that no adult is allowed to be alone with children that are not his or her own.  There must always be at least two adults present for any meeting or activity involving children.  I think this should apply to every situation across the country, including among teachers, daycare workers, coaches, etc.
5/19/11 10:20 AM
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CJJScout
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Just read a book by Wesley Hill called "Washed and Waiting". You can get it on Amazon and is awesome. Details his struggles as a homosexual Christian.

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