The Church And Gays

Friday, 3 March 2006, 23:47 | Category : Religion
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I recently had an email conversation with a fellow blogger. Part of what I said to him was:

I’m not gay, I can’t say I really understand being gay. I have problems with many of the gay activist groups – but I’ve found that on a personal level, I don’t have a problem with accepting gay friends either as friends or as gay. Does that make sense?… I have conflicts reconciling some of the language in the Bible with how I think I should feel. And yet, I feel strongly that, for instance, you and your partner should be able to have the same legal, medical, societal rights as my wife and I.

and:

Yes, Biblical language about homosexuality gives me some trouble. I’ve read enough through the years to know that what we think the Bible is saying isn’t always what it was actually saying. I just haven’t been able to settle the debate in my mind. But keeping gay people out of church is, to me, obviously wrong. Even if I take the extreme side and say being gay is a sin, there are plenty of sins mentioned much more often. I used to think being gay was just wrong. I guess most every gay person, at some point, thought of it as wrong. The change in my attitude hasn’t come so much from a new understanding theologically, but from knowing gays through the years and understanding they’re different in a way I can’t quite understand, but like me in so many ways. In other words, people. So I guess what I’m saying is, I haven’t found the theological rationale to set aside Biblical language, but I’m aware of the possibility that there may be one. Is that fair enough?”

Tonight, I went to a blog that I read sporadically, far less than I should – Real Live Preacher. And I found an entry that talked of how he reconciled this issue. In that post, he referred to an article written by Dr. Lewis Smedes, a retired minister in the Christian Reformed Church, in which he compared how the church once treated divorced Christians with how they now treat homosexuals. It was, for me, a pretty convincing argument. I can’t say it has resolved all my conflicts, but it’s given me the basis for a new understanding. In the end, redemption, salvation, justification aren’t for us to decide. We are, most of us, doing our best to make it through this life with the light we have. In the end, that’s what we have to work with. Peace.

3 Comments for “The Church And Gays”

  1. 1Nancy

    If you are a believer you know we were all created by God……God is within each of us….not outside somewhere in the ether……If God is within each of us we must love one another…….remember the “Do unto others”….. And you are so right about the language in the bible and the mores of the day…………enjoyed your post……..good that you are coming to grips with this……..

  2. 2Dave

    Ping.

  3. 3scott

    Love the sinner. Hate the sin. That’s what God does. He doesn’t condemn, yet he doesn’t let it slide, either. It’s simple. And it’s difficult. But there it is. We must take sin seriously, but we must take love more seriously. That’s what God does.