Time for a Little Q & A

So in response to Kevin DeYoung’s very pertinent questions to rainbow-affirming Christians, Matthew Vines has responded with 40 questions of his own, these directed at Christians who are, as he puts it, “non-affirming.” Being as I am found in that latter category, let me have a shot at it.

What I want to do is either answer Matthew’s questions, or explain why I will not take the bait of answering a particular question. Put another way, I will answer the questions, but not the loaded questions.

1. Do you accept that sexual orientation is not a choice?

First, I do not believe there is one answer that fits for everyone living a homosexual lifestyle. For some it is very much a choice, while for others the inclinations that lead to same sex attraction run very close to the bone. I do not believe there is one Platonic form of “homosexuality.”

Having said this, I would then point out that sin is defined by Scripture, and not by our guesswork on the strength of our abilities in choosing the contrary. To assume that sin is absent because of an inability to choose righteousness is to fall prey to Pelagianism.

2. Do you accept that sexual orientation is highly resistant to attempts to change it?

Yes, it certainly can be. But this is true of all sin, and true for all of us. The Christian life is described in Scripture as a life of mortification. “For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live” (Rom. 8:13). This is certainly true for those seeking to put their same sex attractions to death. But it is also true of all the rest of us. John Owen put it well when he said that we should not think we make any progress in godliness if we do not walk daily over the bellies of our own lusts.

3. How many meaningful relationships with lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender (LGBT) people do you have?

I could answer this question in a way that defeated the purpose of asking it, but this is one that I will decline to answer. Meaningful relationships with friends and parishioners cease to be meaningful when they are used as pawns in political chess games.

4. How many openly LGBT people would say you are one of their closest friends?

If there were any, you would have to ask them. See above.

5. How much time have you spent in one-on-one conversation with LGBT Christians about their faith and sexuality?

Many, many hours. How much is enough?

6. Do you accept that heterosexual marriage is not a realistic option for most gay people?

No. But I do accept that it is not a realistic option for many. But recall that heterosexual marriage is also not a realistic option for a number of heterosexual people. Our sexual duties are defined by Scripture, and not by our circumstances and desires.

7. Do you accept that lifelong celibacy is the only valid option for most gay people if all same-sex relationships are sinful?

Again, change most to many and I can accept that.

8. How many gay brothers and sisters in Christ have you walked with on the path of mandatory celibacy, and for how long?

Back to question #3.

9. What is your answer for gay Christians who struggled for years to live out a celibacy mandate but were driven to suicidal despair in the process?

My answer is always to point the struggling Christian to Christ, whatever the nature of the struggle. Christ is the Savior of all who call upon Him. That said, I would caution against a facile assumption that serious attempts at celibacy by people who were later suicidal are causally connected in any straight line way. Say the suicidal thoughts are downstream from these attempts at celibacy, but also downstream from a life of self-loathing, a distant, angry father, three years of promiscuity, and drug use starting in junior high. If you chalk the suicidal inpulses up to the attempts at celibacy only, then it appears that your efforts are more political than they are pastoral.

10. Has mandatory celibacy produced good fruit in the lives of most gay Christians you know?

Yes.

11. How many married same-sex couples do you know?

We have only had same sex mirage here in Idaho for week now. Give me a minute.

12. Do you believe that same-sex couples’ relationships can show the fruit of the Spirit: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control?

No. The apostle Paul gives us two lists side by side in Galatians. One is the fruit of the Spirit that you mention, and the other one lists the works of the flesh (Gal. 5:19-21). The two lists are inconsistent, and the works of the flesh include unrepented sexual immorality. Life in both lists is incompossible.

13. Do you believe that it is possible to be a Christian and support same-sex marriage in the church?

Yes. I believe that genuine Christians can sin grievously in this way. But if their lives are characterized by the qualities described by Paul under the “works of the flesh,” then they will not inherit the kingdom of heaven.

14. Do you believe that it is possible to be a Christian and support slavery?

Yes. I believe the apostle Paul was a Christian, as was Philemon.

15. If not, do you believe that Martin Luther, John Calvin, and Jonathan Edwards were not actually Christians because they supported slavery?

No, I believe they were genuine Christians also. But with this question and the previous one, I would ask you to define what you mean by “support.” If you define it as any stance that stops short of demanding immediate abolition, then I agree that all the above “supported” slavery. As did the Lord Jesus when He healed the centurion’s slave, but said nothing about setting him free.

16. Do you think supporting same-sex marriage is a more serious problem than supporting slavery?

Yes, far more serious.

17. Did you spend any time studying the Bible’s passages about slavery before you felt comfortable believing that slavery is wrong?

Heh.

18. Does it cause you any concern that Christians throughout most of church history would have disagreed with you?

No, because I believe I am in line with what most Christians have thought about this. Slavery as an institution is a sinful institution, and race-based chattel slavery was far worse. But God outlined very specific instructions in the New Testament for abolishing that institution, but doing so without revolutionary means. For more on this crucial subject, you can check this out.

19. Did you know that, for most of church history, Christians believed that the Bible taught the earth stood still at the center of the universe?

Oh, good grief.

20. Does it cause you any concern that you disagree with their interpretation of the Bible?

None at all. This is because the problem the church had with geocentricity was not that they were literalistic Bible thumpers. The problem was that they gotten into bed with the “best science of the day,” with respect for established pagan thinkers outside the church required as the price of intellectual respectability. They then found a few Bible verses that could be attached to this view. This is a process not unlike how many churches are rethinking same sex mirage.

21. Did you spend any time studying the Bible’s verses on the topic before you felt comfortable believing that the earth revolves around the sun?

I’ll bet I didn’t do it in your assigned order, but I have studied the subject.

22. Do you know of any Christian writers before the 20th century who acknowledged that gay people must be celibate for life due to the church’s rejection of same-sex relationships?

The Bible doesn’t require gay people to flee fornication. It requires all Christians to flee fornication. And the church has always taught that the only lawful sexual expression is through heterosexual marriage. This can be arranged in a syllogism.

23. If not, might it be fair to say that mandating celibacy for gay Christians is not a traditional position?

This is an argument from silence, and a particularly bad one. The history of Christian moral theory says nothing about computer porn either.

24. Do you believe that the Bible explicitly teaches that all gay Christians must be single and celibate for life?

Apart from marrying someone of the opposite sex, yes, that is what the Bible explicitly teaches.

25. If not, do you feel comfortable affirming something that is not explicitly affirmed in the Bible?

It does reject homosexual behavior explicitly, but even if it didn’t, I would feel comfortable affirming something like that by good and necessary consequence.

26. Do you believe that the moral distinction between lust and love matters for LGBT people’s romantic relationships?

No. The sin of homosexual sex is objective. It may be compounded by other sins, like selfishness, or malice, or envy, etc., but even if you take those other sins away, the fact of the homosexual disobedience remains. For a heterosexual analogy, there are some men who are kinder to their prostitutes than other men are to their wives. That doesn’t mean that the prostitution isn’t fornication. It just means the prostitute’s client wasn’t as sinful as he could have been. That doesn’t mean the husband isn’t a jerk, but rather that he is not a fornicator.

27. Do you think that loving same-sex relationships should be assessed in the same way as the same-sex behavior Paul explicitly describes as lustful in Romans 1?

If you limit it to the simple fact of homosexual relations, yes. If you throw in the other sins that Paul mentions in Romans 1, then the situations vary according to how many other sins you throw in.

28. Do you believe that Paul’s use of the terms “shameful” and “unnatural” in Romans 1:26-27 means that all same-sex relationships are sinful?

Yes, if sex is included in what you mean by same-sex relationships.

29. Would you say the same about Paul’s description of long hair in men as “shameful” and against “nature” in 1 Corinthians 11:14, or would you say he was describing cultural norms of his time?

Yes, I would say the same thing about it. Paul appeals to nature itself there, and not to Greco/Romans norms.

30. Do you believe that the capacity for procreation is essential to marriage?

Yes. It is not essential for a marriage to occur or to exist, but openness to children is an essential part of the definition of marriage.

31. If so, what does that mean for infertile heterosexual couples?

It means that God is the one who opens and closes wombs. This does not mean that every act of intercourse must result in a child. It means that healthy sexual expression is what I call liturgically open to fruitfulness.

32. How much time have you spent engaging with the writings of LGBT-affirming Christians like Justin Lee, James Brownson, and Rachel Murr?

Way plenty.

33. What relationship recognition rights short of marriage do you support for same-sex couples?

I support any relationship that any parties might enter by means of contract, provided the contract makes no reference to marriage, civil union, or sexual orientation or behavior.

34. What are you doing to advocate for those rights?

Nothing.

35. Do you know who Tyler Clementi, Leelah Alcorn, and Blake Brockington are, and did your church offer any kind of prayer for them when their deaths made national news?

No, we did not. The way such tragedies are politicized is just shameless.

36. Do you know that LGBT youth whose families reject them are 8.4 times more likely to attempt suicide than LGBT youth whose families support them?

That wouldn’t surprise me. It also wouldn’t surprise me to discover that the family’s rejection of that child began long before any controversy over sexual issues began, and was a player in that child’s vulnerabilities and choices. This goes back to the simplistic approach to counseling that appeared in question #9. This is politics, not pastoring.

37. Have you vocally objected when church leaders and other Christians have compared same-sex relationships to things like bestiality, incest, and pedophilia?

No. Why should I object to that? All the reasons you appeal to in support of your questions do not prohibit such comparisons — rather, they invite them. Why do all the yearnings you appeal to, all the innate desires you speak of, the orientations that “are highly resistant to change” that you describe, suddenly become irrelevant simply because the object of desire is an animal, a sister, or underage? Why does the authority of a tough temptation suddenly mean something else?

38. How certain are you that God’s will for all gay Christians is lifelong celibacy?

Very certain. But I only apply this to those Christians whose same sex attractions make heterosexual marriage impossible.

39. What do you think the result would be if we told all straight teenagers in the church that if they ever dated someone they liked, held someone’s hand, kissed someone, or got married, they would be rebelling against God?

The kids in our church would laugh at us because we had previously given them Bibles, and have taught them how to read them.

40. Are you willing to be in fellowship with Christians who disagree with you on this topic?

No, not if they are teachers. I would be willing to be in fellowship with a Christian who was badly taught on these matters, and needed to have things straightened out for him. But I am not willing to be in fellowship with false teachers who should know better and are deliberately leading people astray.

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Jane Dunsworth
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Jane Dunsworth

This is really excellent. It really brings out some stuff at the heart of the dispute.

duellsquimby
Member

I quite agree. I think if you were putting together a list of your Top 10 best posts, this would have to be on it. Simply Excellent and good for saving to refer to again. Heck, I might put it on my study wall next to my desk.

Laura
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Laura

Thank you for tackling these.

Jack Bradley
Guest
Jack Bradley

Great responses. Regarding “gay Christian”, former Lesbian Rosaria Butterfield has some helpful words. http://tinyurl.com/qa5tl24 (approx. the 10 minute mark): “I’m an English professor. . . ‘gay’ is an adjective, Christian is a noun. And the job of an adjectival modifier is actually to change the noun it modifies. So, you say you’re a gay Christian, you know what you’re doing? You’re putting on the wrong team jersey, and you’re going out on the field, and you’re playing. And you’re confusing everybody. You may be a Christian who struggles with same-sex attraction. You may be a Christian who struggles with any… Read more »

duellsquimby
Member

I really have been inspired how Rosaria Butterfield has explained her story with winsome compassion, insight and an uncompromising stand as a believer.

Mark Allen Sells
Guest
Mark Allen Sells

The Christian Church continues to hold the idea that the condition of sin does not exclude any person from Communion with God or from any of the Holy signs and seals of the covenant of grace, .

“For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.”

Matt
Guest
Matt

“16. Do you think supporting same-sex marriage is a more serious problem than supporting slavery?

Yes, far more serious.”

Hard to describe how stupid that is.

Dave
Guest
Dave

You are correct Matt, that was one of the dumber questions. Great answer to an really stupid question though.

Matt
Guest
Matt

You’re very clever and witty, but this really just shows how goofy Wilson’s worldview is.

Matt
Guest
Matt

Or maybe how white it is. Wilson is the whitest guy I have ever encountered.

denise
Guest
denise

Biblical slavery issues were not drawn on racial lines.

Matt
Guest
Matt

American slavery issues were and are. Wilson’s really a piece of work; it’s hard to imagine anyone giving less of a shit about people not like himself.

Zachary
Guest
Zachary

Matt, if you aren’t a Christian we can’t expect that you will have your opinions found on Scripture instead of wispy whims and nice thoughts.

Matt
Guest
Matt

If “Slavery is worse than gay marriage” is a wispy whim or nice thought, then I happily plead guilty. If “Gay marriage is worse than slavery” is a scriptural opinion, then count me out. Not much else to say there.

Zachary
Guest
Zachary

Matt, you just are betraying your non-Biblical state of mind, that’s all. You probably operate from a humanistic, materialistic, evolution based frame of reference. Man’s freedom is the highest good. Maybe you’ve read The Shack, and you really like it? Any of this floating your boat?

Matt
Guest
Matt

Never read the shack, no. I’d say freedom is a pretty good thing though; maybe or maybe not the highest good, but who is ranking such things anyway? I don’t know about humanism, materialism, or evolution, but all of those things being false doesn’t imply that Christianity is true.

Zachary
Guest
Zachary

Right, so at bottom you are very casual about your approach to truth and reality, which shows in the comments you make. Your foundation is not solid, it can change as readily as you change your opinion about something. You don’t know what’s true, and it sounds like you might not care. Bottom line, you’re a fool and lost, you need to repent of your sin and bend the knee to Jesus. You’re standing on his ground, speaking with the mouth (typing with the hands?) he gave you. It is contradictory for you to oppose him with the body he… Read more »

Matt
Guest
Matt

If by “very casual” you mean “not very zealous” then I’d have to concur. I’m not much of a crusader for any cause. I know some things to be true, especially obvious things like slavery being worse than gay marriage, but when it comes to matters of gods and such I have no idea. Maybe if they ever showed any evidence of themselves I’d consider it, but if they don’t care then why should I?

Zachary
Guest
Zachary

The problem is, you can’t know for certain a single thing to be true without God. You can’t make sense out of your reality, your joys, your pains, your existence, nothing. You can’t find purpose. The reason you should care about this is because willful apathy and ignorance toward the God who made you will land you in hell after you die. And because God cares enough that he sent his son Jesus to die on the cross to pay the penalty for our sin. You deserve to die for your sin, but if you repent of your sin and… Read more »

Moi
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Moi

Zachary, there are studies indicating that prayer, earnestly conducted on large scales, is completely ineffective, so have fun. Meditation, and prayer as meditation, has however been demonstrated to be very beneficial to the individual making the effort to meditate. The attempt to claim that all good comes from God is one I’ve heard before and it’s a non-starter, morality doesn’t come from God or the Bible- as evidence, slavery- subjugation of women- infanticide, genocide and murder at the behest of this invisible being… Morality conveys an evolutionary advantage, the science on this is quite clear. If you really want a… Read more »

Abigail
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Abigail

Matt,

Might I humbly suggest that you, and all mankind, are the best evidence of God? You are made in His image and as an image bearer of God you reflect him to the world around you. And in reflecting him, you give evidence of His existence. Your very being is an argument for God.

Moi
Guest
Moi

wow. Abigail, there’s no evidence (aside from some scriptural mythology) about God’s existence or his action in humanity’s origin, yet copious amounts of evidence (DNA, fossil record, and on and on) obviating the need for God’s hands in our evolution.

This string is actually much more difficult to read than I’d expected.

dchammers
Member

The same old, “There is no God, and I hate Him,” of all the new atheists.

exGOPman
Guest
exGOPman

Wrong. So very, very wrong. You can’t “hate” something you don’t believe exists. In the same way that none of us “new atheists” hate unicorns, dragons or the tooth fairy.

dchammers
Member

Then why so much fussing? Why waste your time? I sure don’t hang out on some blog hating Shiva. I’m thinking I’m very, very right because this behavior is seen everywhere.

David
Guest
David

Matt, I think Doug’s point, in part, was that gay marriage is worse for a society because it represents a willful, consensual degradation of people in the form of an immoral sexual liaison, with society’s approval at making this accepted and out in the open. Now, slavery can take on that form also, but you and I can easily see the horrors of slavery. Even many non-Christians can see the horrors of slavery. The problem with gay marriage and many of the forms of sexual immorality is that they seem pleasurable, and innocent, and therefore they do not offend the… Read more »

Matt
Guest
Matt

“No one today in our country has difficulty seeing what’s wrong with buying and selling black people like property.”

Well sure, that’s true today. But back in the 1800s they had a lot of difficulty seeing what was wrong with it and that situation was a lot worse than today. Wilson’s historical and tribalistic blindness is what I’m opposed to, not his opposition to gay marriage.

David
Guest
David

Okay, Matt, but my point was: 1. In terms of the more pressing danger to the souls of our countrymen today, would that be the mavens of sexual license, or the KKK? I think the former. 2. The horrors of slavery are….horrible. I guess you could say that the depth of depravity was pretty stark for our country to be able to live that way for so long. However, the lures of sexual sin are much more alluring, and they tempt all of us, unlike the lure of race based slavery. 3. The side that is promoting sexual sin likes… Read more »

Moi
Guest
Moi

I have to vehemently disagree. Pressing danger to your countrymen- which is worse- KKK, who commits violent acts, advocates for racism and racial inequality- or “mavens of sexual license” who want to be free to form a marriage bond with a loved one and enjoy the same rights as everyone else? And how do you stretch gay marriage, in a committed and loving adult relationship into sexual sin and mavens of sexual license? I see that a lot in supposedly Christian discussions, frankly- an extrapolation to all sorts of imagined sin, to help folks feel better in their convictions. I… Read more »

David
Guest
David

Because of your post. Because when you see a form of “godliness” in the form of committed relationships, you and many others provide support for that. But where in the bible is a monogamous quality to homosexuality seen as ethically relevant to the subject of homosexuality?

Moi
Guest
Moi

Where is monogamy seen as ethically responsible at all? Certainly not in the Bible, as polygamy is expressly described in the Old Testament, and never forbidden.

Divorce however, is something God seems to dislike, and is even forbidden- why the vitriol, then, against homosexuality but not against divorce?

These efforts to demonize homosexuality, cloaked in scripture, reek of hypocrisy.

http://www.jesusandmo.net/2015/07/01/dead/

David
Guest
David

Moi, You either need to learn the meaning of words, or stop using them. I’m not hypocritical simply because I view homosexuality as wrong, or you as wrong for the view your expressing. Now, if I were a secret homosexual and I spoke out against it, then there’s hypocrisy at work. But thus far, I’ve given you no grounds for an accusation of hypocrisy. You’re w simply using that word the way people use the f-word, in a manner removed from its lexical meaning, and more autobiographical in its purpose (expressing how strongly you feel but with no point of… Read more »

Moi
Guest
Moi

I suggest you’re hypocritical only because you choose to use a few bible verses that can be interpreted to condemn homosexuality, yet ignore the verses in which God advocates infanticide, bans the consumption of pork and shellfish, the wearing of mixed fabrics and gets a bunch of other things wrong.

If you want to claim the inerrancy of scripture, use it all.

David
Guest
David

I hope you can understand how unfair your above statement is. This is not my blog or your blog and so its not fair for either one of us to expect the other person to give a comment to a blog post that covers the full sweep of the Mosaic law. None the less the short answer to your question is that I don’t follow laws against shellfish or keeping kosher for example not because I’m picking and choosing but because the New Testament tells us that those things were symbolic of the Lord Jesus Christ. Paul says in Colossians… Read more »

A. James
Member

Thanks for typing the 1000 words so I can just type a few more than 4.
The “hypocritical” “irrelevant” “vitriol” was getting a little too reminiscent of S from the past two days…and I haven’t quite recovered from that :)

Moi
Guest
Moi

Interesting train of thought- but my reading has been along the lines of understanding the mind, as much as we can, and searching for evidence of God. I actually was Christian, but also science-oriented and when I examine the evidence for the existence of God, the divinity of Jesus, the inspiration of paul and so on, I find it lacking. There’s significant speculation, based on written accounts of paul’s “thorn” that he suffered from temporal lobe epilepsy. What you seem to be relying on here is the source of morality. I’d suggest, to get a sense of my views, that… Read more »

A. James
Member

“But yes- If someone takes the Bible seriously enough to condemn homosexuality, using Scripture as the justification, what right has that person to ignore any other biblical command?” As much right as you have to come to your own conclusions or continue to seek and decide for yourself as you have and continue to do so. Our lives and beliefs, as you even shared, are not static. We grow, we learn, we realize, we re-evaluate, we have hindsight, etc. Just as we might think you’ve missed a few links in your reasoning, so you think we might be ignoring any… Read more »

Moi
Guest
Moi

Understand and were we to meet, we’d likely get along just fine. What irritates and even offends me is the claim by the author here that allowing gay marriage is much worse than slavery. I mean, really- and his attempt to defend that statement ties it all back to the Bible. Religious literature in my experience can and often is used to justify actions that, upon examination seem egregious. I don’t speak solely of the Bible, but also the Quran, the upanishads, whichever. Should individuals choose to place a bronze age text written by a group of semi-literate, scientifically ignorant… Read more »

A. James
Member

I’m still figuring out how to use Disqus, so I’m catching up on things I had not seen before. “Should individuals choose to place a bronze age text written by a group of semi-literate, scientifically ignorant nomads at the center of their lives, according Biblical or Quranic law more importance than the Constitution or the laws of the country in which they live- bad things happen. ” I guess everyone’s religion or lack of religion and opinion of others’ is up to them for sure, but I agree, one ought to “obey those that have rule over them” etc. etc.… Read more »

Moi
Guest
Moi

Understand, well said. Where I stumble on the opposition to this ruling is the idea that the Bible (and interpretation thereof) can be and often is used to justify discrimination. Slavery is rightly seen as an archaic, barbaric custom that violates basic human rights. Less pervasive, yet important to LGBT persons is their own acceptance as equals, particularly in a Christian-dominated society that categorizes homosexuality as inherently sinful. I’m equally sure that I have a bias- based on my reading, I’m of the view that homosexuality is a result of several factors, chiefly genetic with some environmental influences. So, an… Read more »

David
Guest
David

However, you are correct about issues like divorce, and I don’t want to gloss over that. The church likes to pick and choose. The solution, however, is not to sprinkle deliberate sin on top of hypocrisy. Or as Jesus said to some professional hypocrites, the Pharisees, when they neglected the weightier matters of the law to stress lighter points, “these also you should have done”. The church needs purity of life and doctrine in preaching against unbiblical divorces, which admittedly is most of them these days, as well as perversions which masquerade as marriages. Both, and…not either, or.

Moi
Guest
Moi

Thanks you for the thoughtful reply.

I cannot however support a book that endorses slavery and indentured servitude, provides advice on how to sell your daughter, proscribes that a rape victim marry her rapist… A few mentions of the immorality of homosexual relationships should not enable the negativity directed by those who claim to be Christian against LGBT people.

David
Guest
David

Moi, I was not always a Christian. I have to tell you that one of the issues that I had to deal with when I began looking at Christianity was the fact that my natural inclinations when it comes to what’s right and what’s wrong were really irrelevant to whether or not God existed and what kind of a person he was or is. There really are more than a few statements about sexual purity in both Testaments although I admit that today because these issues are at the forefront of the culture wars they are being talked about more… Read more »

A. James
Member

“Where is monogamy seen as ethically responsible at all? Certainly not in the Bible,” “And He answered and said to them, “Have you not read that He who 1made them at the beginning c‘made them male and female,’ 5 and said, d‘For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and ethe two shall become one flesh’?” “Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor… Read more »

A. James
Member

“And how do you stretch gay marriage, in a committed and loving adult relationship into sexual sin and mavens of sexual license? I see that a lot in supposedly Christian discussions, frankly- an extrapolation to all sorts of imagined sin, to help folks feel better in their convictions.” How do you stretch it to NOT be sexual sin…yes, I see this in supposedly Christian discussions…and orthodoxy and clear NT scripture is dismissed…so why is it a shock that we have a problem with those extrapolating this to all sorts of imagined God-blessed behavior? homosexuality (whether committed or “loving” or not)… Read more »

Moi
Guest
Moi

The alarm to me is why your vote should matter, and why “the states” and “the people” should care about someone else’s love life. “The people” is such a gross, incorrect generalization as well. Public support for same sex marriage has been above 50% in the United states steadily since 2010. Precisely which of your rights have been eroded by this ruling? The right to not marry someone of the same sex? If you don’t want to, then don’t. This is NOT eroding your rights in any way- it’s ensuring equal rights for others, who have been and remain subject… Read more »

A. James
Member

“The alarm to me is why your vote should matter” Excuse me? I’m…shocked. Uh, Civics class? Being an American 101? “and why “the states” and “the people” should care about someone else’s love life” Well…because…states have laws? and we aren’t anarchists or communists?and people make lawsuits when they care too much about someone else’s freedom of religion in not wanting to be involved in someone else’s love life? “The people” is such a gross, incorrect generalization as well. ” It isn’t gross or generalizing at all. WE are the people, we the people in order to form a more perfect… Read more »

Moi
Guest
Moi

There’s so much, I don’t know where to start. I suggest that your vote on this matter is irrelevant not to undercut the democratic process, but to preserve it- are you suggesting that the rights of others to marry are subject to the vote of the majority? so your vote, and you as a member of the public should be free to express your biases, and limit the rights of someone else? You’ve failed to explain what right you’ve lost- aside from the right to infringe on someone else’s freedom because they happen to love someone else. That’s a religious… Read more »

A. James
Member

I almost didn’t respond to this. It’s like we’re from two completely different countries–spiritually, yes, but PHYSICALLY, too. I don’t know what to make of it. Anyway, last attempt. “There’s so much, I don’t know where to start.” Exactly. I feel the same way from your comment :) “I suggest that your vote on this matter is irrelevant not to undercut the democratic process, but to preserve it” Then that is in direct contradiction to the Constitution. There’s not much more to say than that. It is the multitude of the people to keep the government in check, to keep… Read more »

timothy
Guest
timothy

To take the gay out of it, my adultery and fornication are sexual sin even though I love the woman and I love each other.

A. James
Member

Yes. Yes. Yes. In the discussion that has ensued these few days (all the while thinking “we” bring up slavery, etc. too much) let us not forget: “It was Matt Vines that brought up slavery and tried to argue by analogy from that issue to SSM.” If he had stuck to the issue of gay marriage instead of bringing up “unnecessary” issues, Wilson wouldn’t have answered his simple 4 word answer “Yes, far more serious” which then people could not take at face value. Even so, Wilson answered the question succinctly, then people began wanting him to explain more. So,… Read more »

Webster
Guest
Webster

Another thing to keep in mind is that slavery as a race-based institution existed only for about two hundred years in one nation. Slavery existed for thousands of years before that, and involved slaves, slavers, and slave-owners who were from every people group on the planet. Africans owned slaves and became slaves. Europeans owned slaves and became slaves. Arabs owned slaves and became slaves. Native Americans and Asians, too. In many cases, it was beneficial for both parties (although that may seem hard to believe based on our fairly recent history). Slavery in the Old Testament was largely of two… Read more »

Jane Dunsworth
Guest
Jane Dunsworth

More than one nation, but yes, mostly North America and Britain and its possessions.

ArwenB
Guest
ArwenB

Back in the 1800s not even black people objected to buying and selling black people.

Katecho
Member

The first legally recognized permanent slave owner in the U.S. was a black man, not a white man. While there were relatively few free blacks, apparently free blacks owned black slaves at a higher ratio than whites owned them. The practice of free blacks owning black slaves is ascribed to the view that it was for sanctuary, particularly if the goal was to keep slave families together. Not that these facts change the foul nature of the kidnap and race-based practice of the time, but these are rarely mentioned data points in the never-ending politicization of the issue. I’m sure… Read more »

denise
Guest
denise

American slavery never followed the norm in the world history of slavery. You are looking through a pinpoint lens. Find a wider view.

Conserbatives_conserve_little
Guest
Conserbatives_conserve_little

Not that I am a fan of Matt, but American slavery followed a slightly more benign path that Portugal zil and Spain initiated. Both countries were just totally brutal to their slaves. They didn’t care how many died in the process of Empire Building. They tried to enslave the Indians, but that didn’t work out so well, so they started importing slaves, a century before we did. When it came to enslaving Africans, Americans were the late boys on the block. We filled the trail blazed by Portugal, France and Spain.

JohnM
Guest
JohnM

This really just shows how goofy Matt’s worldview is.

Dave
Guest
Dave

Matt, you are off base. For years, Anthony Johnson, a black man, was listed as the first American slave owner. Revisionist history tries digging up others to make the case seem less severe. Additionally, there were many black slave owners in the antebellum South that are overlooked in the slavery debate. If you are concerned about slavery, why don’t you get after those politicians and rich folks who have held illegal workers in their homes. Every time another story breaks, the illegals were confined to the home and had to work for pittances. Or perhaps you could go to the… Read more »

Matt
Guest
Matt

“Or even do something simple like stopping the minimum wage which is directed at enslaving poor blacks.”

You guys really need to listen to yourselves talk sometime.

Dave
Guest
Dave

Matt, my point was that you are speaking in the gate and don’t have any answers except foolish ones. You do not stand in the marketplace proclaiming Christianity, but are more than willing to type foolish shots at those who are interfacing with huge sin in America today and who are punished for doing so. Christians today who stand against homosexuality lose their jobs, miss promotions, get their tires slashed. Those who go with the flow post foolish comments on blogs. As a note to Matt and other readers, noted economists pointed out years ago and continue to do so… Read more »

Webster
Guest
Webster

The minimum wage was an idea by white union workers to price black workers out of work, so they wouldn’t be able to compete with them.

Charlie Sutton
Guest
Charlie Sutton

It hasn’t got a thing to do with race. Slavery is one of those things that God tolerated and regulated strictly. Slavery in the ancient Near East was a far different thing than the race-based chattel slavery of the Americas, and before you cast stones at Wilson you should read up on the various forms in which slavery has existed. The slavery described in Scripture and that practiced in the Roman Empire was not race based, and (in the Bible) was more like indentured service than anything else. In a society where currency was scarce, going into servitude was a… Read more »

Webster
Guest
Webster

He cares more about other people than you do about yourself.

Job
Guest
Job

Matt,

Are you white?

Matt
Guest
Matt

Yep, and happy for it. But you probably don’t know what I mean by “whitest guy I’ve ever encountered”. Guys like Wilson don’t care about slavery because it doesn’t affect them. Gay marriage, on the other hand, signals their diminishing influence. Wilson is so consumed by pride that he can’t stand the thought that people he considers beneath him don’t have to give a crap what he thinks.

Max Focus
Guest
Max Focus

“Wilson is so consumed by pride that he can’t stand the thought that people he considers beneath him don’t have to give a crap what he thinks.” Okay Matt. You should head to the corner and let the growns ups exchange more thoughtful comments. Close the Huff-Post article you’re reading and try to follow the irenic and constructive ideas that have been squarely presented to you. You betray your worldview with such facile and shallow comments like this. Respectfully (prior statements aside) this is childish and groundless. What passes for debate today is to lob some sophmoric, internet-sourced fodder about… Read more »

Matt
Guest
Matt

I would if the “grownups” weren’t saying insane things like “gay marriage is worse than slavery”. You first guys. One can’t help but love how the serrated edge is only supposed to go in one direction.

Tom
Guest
Tom

Matt–for the same reasons that it is worse to support idolatry than absolute monarchy.

Job
Guest
Job

They clearly do care what he thinks. Otherwise refusal to participate in a sham marriage would not result in opprobrium and fine.

Besides, being forced to perform a service against ones will is a form of slavery. Did you mean American-style chattel slavery?

Webster
Guest
Webster

That’s a pretty racist comment there. Not caring about other people is not limited to white people.

Fighting_Falcon
Guest
Fighting_Falcon

Maybe it just shows how little you understand it.

Conserbatives_conserve_little
Guest
Conserbatives_conserve_little

I found one of the best books on the subject of slavery it is entitled the history of the Negro race in America 1619 to 1880. I found it at Project Gutenberg. This means of course that it is free. The book gives a history of each of the original 13 states and the history

S_O_T_A
Guest
S_O_T_A

The answer or the question?

Copyleft
Guest
Copyleft

Agreed. This answer demonstrates how the Bible has nothing to do with morality, and why people are abandoning its deranged hatred in droves.

exGOPman
Guest
exGOPman

Matt, you cannot reason with the religiously indoctrinated. It’s like playing tennis without a net. If they can turn themselves into knots trying to come up with a rationale for how letting two consenting same sex adults commit to one another is “more of a problem” than ownership of human property, there is no reasonable argument that will ever make sense to them.

Tim
Guest
Tim

Excellent job answering a loaded set of questions–not far from the “how often do you beat your wife” category. One presupposition of the questioner is the incomprehensibility of a celibate life. The culture makes it even more difficult with its hyper-sexualized expectations. Far from being inclusive, the culturally progressive crowd fans the fames of despair on their own. Certainly sexual brokenness is many-faceted, but the progs play their part in this.

Brian Marr
Guest
Brian Marr

Thanks Pastor Wilson, that was fun. One question on #29. Suppose the question cited Paul’s use of 1 Cor. 11. I just can’t see how “covering” can refer to her hair, because of verse 5 which equates it with having no hair. Dr. Merkle mentioned in the Grace Agenda that it referred to how a woman’s hair would get unbraided whenever they went on the Bacchanalian revels, but still I normally don’t see girls without ponytails as against nature. I’m not phased by it, but I’m curious as to your full position on it, since this is going to get… Read more »

Sandra
Guest
Sandra

Wonderful. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

Tim Roof
Guest
Tim Roof

Great point about people having “same-sex relationships.” My male friends and I are in same-sex relationships; we are not, however, engaging in sexual acts. Very important distinction and a clear indication of how easily we are willing to let language be co-opted by political activists.

Jill Smith
Member

I agree with you. But I think a particular problem for gay men committed to Christian celibacy is that they are to some extent limited from strong, loving relationships with men. Friendships straight men take for granted might be an occasion of sin for somebody who is struggling.

Tim Roof
Guest
Tim Roof

Yes, that is a good point. The truth is, our sin and the embracing and affirmation of it naturally limits us in our relationships. It is a sad reality for the person who is unwilling or unable to repent from and renounce his sin, no matter what that sin might be.

Tim Roof
Guest
Tim Roof

But the good news is that those who are “struggling,” at least, have more reason to hope in Christ for deliverance than those who have given up the struggle and now demand that everyone else affirm them in their redefined behaviours; sin by any other name is sin.

carole
Guest
carole

You know me Jill, always bringing it back to alcoholism, and maybe this is true with eating disorders I don’t know, but the newly sober are always afraid they will never be able to have a social life again, and to some extent that is true. That’s the way it is. I think if we are in any way responsible for our sin, then we accept the consequences, if we have it close to the bone as he said, then we accept that is the life God gave us and work with it. If I believe God is sovereign and… Read more »

Jill Smith
Member

I do believe that we must play the hand we are dealt, and that we must do it as cheerfully as we can. I have a lot of sympathy for celibate gays who look down the years and must accept that there may never be a wife or children or companionship in old age. I think churches can probably ease the burden, and I hope they do. I think of my own situation, and I am so grateful that it did not happen when I was younger and when remarriage would have been a real temptation.

denise
Guest
denise

Funny how the idea of a life of celibacy is taken to be equal to leprosy or worse (a death knell). Sex and sexual behaviors totally define this wicked generation. Nothing else more important, in their world view. Good answers. Remember Isaiah’s job!Those who wrote the questions should heed Isaiah 1;10-20

S_O_T_A
Guest
S_O_T_A

I know someone who’s a virgin well into his forties. He always laughs when people make celibacy out to be something like a disease. He makes it clear there are things he can do with his life that nobody married can, and also that he is in good company with a certain carpenter from 2000 years ago.

timothy
Guest
timothy

As a young man who took to heart the lessons of this age and looked upon my virginity with shame, then set about to rid myself of it and sundry, I salute that man and his fidelity.

Jill Smith
Member

Could someone help me with the Pelagian comment in part one? I thought that the essence of Pelagianism is that man has the ability to choose righteousness. How could there then be an inability to choose good, and how would that equate to lack of sin if it is assumed in Pelagianism that everyone has been given full moral choice? I have been taught that although a particular gay marriage may seem exemplary–loving, faithful, and productive of great good to others–its good qualities in a sense make it worse because it is setting up a rival good to God’s. The… Read more »

Rick Davis
Guest
Rick Davis

To add to what PB said, one of Pelagius’s main reasons for his belief that man could choose good is that if God commands something, then man must have the ability to do it. (He thought it was nonsense to think of God demanding actions from man that man could not perform.) Contrary to this, Augustine asserted that man fundamentally lacks the ability to do the things God commands. (Hence the prayer “Command what You will, and grant what You command.”) In this situation, gay-marriage activates are attempting a modus tollens. All things god commands are things we can do.… Read more »

Jill Smith
Member

Thank you for your lucid explanation. My faith (Catholic) teaches that God does not command obedience where obedience is humanly impossible. Such a command would violate our understanding of God as a loving father who does not give a serpent when asked for a fish. Everyone gets enough grace to enable him to keep the moral law, if he truly wants to. Is this Pelagianism?? Thanks.

Stephen Larson
Guest
Stephen Larson

This is excellent! I enjoy reading your blog, Pastor Wilson. My brother did a similar thing in answering Matthew Vines on his blog. If anyone wants to read it, it is here. https://theorthodoxyblog.wordpress.com/2015/07/03/40-questions-from-matthew-vines/

Thomas Achord
Guest
Thomas Achord

Great answers. Thanks.

chris
Guest
chris

Yikes, lost me at your answer to question 16. How can you even say that?

bethyada
Member

Because many righteous men owned slaves.

The act of sodomy is always sinful. Saying that people of the same sex can be married is a denial of the truth and it makes God in the garden and Jesus talking to the Pharisees a liar.

A society that celebrates sexual immorality, license, and deprivation to the degree the West does is far more degraded than a sexually moral society that has slaves.

Ben
Guest
Ben

The fact that many righteous men owned slaves has nothing to do with the degree to which it is immoral.

“A society that celebrates sexual immorality, license, and deprivation to the degree the West does is far more degraded than a sexually moral society that has slaves.”

Do you have evidence for this assertion? To say that a society that celebrates sexual perversion is somehow morally worse off than one which kidnaps large groups of people and forces them into a lifetime of hard labor seems like a pure value judgment to me.

Job
Guest
Job

Ben,

Don’t forget it was the Africans who sold blacks to white merchants. Similarly not all slaves engaged in hard labor. Let’s decry the actual institution and not magnify its evils for rhetorical effect.

Ben
Guest
Ben

It doesn’t matter how they acquired the slaves, the point is that they took them against their will, which means it was kidnapping, pure and simple. I never asserted that 100% of the slaves had to do hard labor. But that’s missing the point anyway. If someone kidnaps you and forces you to work in their house, but makes some of their other victims work out in the hot sun, are you any less a victim of kidnapping than they are?

Job
Guest
Job

I beg to differ. Buying is not the same thing as kidnapping, especially if the purchase was done on request. Similarly, someone born into slavery is not a victim of kidnapping. They are merely the victim of a rotten legal system.

Ben
Guest
Ben

Well yeah, if you choose to sell yourself into slavery then that’s a voluntary contractual arrangement. That’s more like indentured servitude. But if someone else kidnaps you and then sells you against your will, then I think it’s reasonable to say that both the seller and the buyer, who intends to keep you as his slave at gunpoint, are guilty of kidnapping. I really don’t see how you can dispute that. People born into slavery are obviously still victims of kidnapping, since as infants they are entirely dependent on their parents, who are still being held captive. If a pregnant… Read more »

Job
Guest
Job

I agree on your first point. However I would say that buying humans at a market in Charleston is not kidnapping, insofar as those people were the legitimate property of whichever African despot they were purchased from. A great evil and sin, but not kidnapping. Hence my objection to the rhetorical flourish.

I concede the second point, if the child was conceived before the kidnapping.

Jill Smith
Member

I think the law would regard the buyer as a kidnaper and a conspirator. If you kidnap a baby and sell it to an infertile couple for one million dollars, they are equally guilty with you–if they knew your intention and you acted at their request. Even if they did not ask you to steal a baby but they took possession of a stolen baby, the law would regard that as kidnaping. I don’t see any way around that.

bethyada
Member

Ben, Abraham had slaves. He was rebuked for several things. Owning slaves was not one of them. So by that comment I mean that owning slaves does not make one unrighteous. Ben I said has slaves, not a society that engages in the slave trade. Read my comment below. A culture can have slaves and not be in the pits of depravity. But this culture that increasing celebrates the most perverse behaviours, where a large proportion of the population can be convinced that same-sex marriage is meaningful (let alone to be celebrated), where men make physical eunuchs of themselves and… Read more »

Rick Davis
Guest
Rick Davis

Also, is this a good time to point out that Virginia was the first state to outlaw the slave trade (in 1778)?

Dave
Guest
Dave

Ben, the Bible teaches that sodomy is an abomination yet never says that about slavery. Sodomy was a capital offense. Slavery was not.

Ben
Guest
Ben

Does it say anything about kidnapping? That’s essentially what chattel slavery was. I know there were other types of slavery that may not have been as egregious, or even sinful at all, but I’m talking about what was done in America.

Dave
Guest
Dave

Yes Ben, I recommend you read your Bible.

Job
Guest
Job

Ben,

I think the worst part of American slavery was the racial caste element. If the USA had imported Ukrainian slaves (4.5 million and counting), after they were freed en masse, they probably would have intermarried and been forgotten about. Instead we had Jim Crow and racial tensions to the present day.

Tim Bushong
Guest
Tim Bushong

Because the question isn’t a serious one. Vines is attempting an equivocation between one thing (slavery) that has historically taken on many different forms (chattel, indentured servitude, voluntary means of family support, spoils of war), and was highly regulated in Scripture, and another thing (homosexuality) that is ALWAYS spoken of in Scripture as an abomination, and is a rebellion against God’s authority as Creator.

chris
Guest
chris

OK, but Vines isn’t talking about chattel slavery, he’s talking about someone like Jonathan Edwards owning slaves in America. Obviously, Edwards was on the wrong side of history. Are we to say he isn’t a christian because he made that decision?

Zachary
Guest
Zachary

History this side of Edwards ain’t much to boast of chris.

JohnM
Guest
JohnM

On the wrong side of history, meh. Doesn’t really even mean anything. Better be concerned about being on the right side of eternity.

Jane Dunsworth
Guest
Jane Dunsworth

How was Edwards’ slave ownership not chattel slavery?

Tom
Guest
Tom

When Vines talks about Jonathan Edwards owning slaves, he is talking about American race-based chattel slavery, because Jonathan Edwards was an American.

Max Focus
Guest
Max Focus

Chris – how was he supposed to answer it? How would you answer it?

S_O_T_A
Guest
S_O_T_A

Because slavery in the bible is not usually the same as what happened in American history. It’s a red herring from Vines.

Jane Dunsworth
Guest
Jane Dunsworth

Also, because it’s 2015. One is actually at issue, the other really isn’t.

Blake Law
Guest

11. How many married same-sex couples do you know?

You whiffed this one a bit. The better answer is: Nobody knows one.

bethyada
Member

Owning slaves is not necessarily morally wrong. Scripture is quite clear that kidnapping into slavery is a capital offense, trading in slaves is usually wrong. But owning slaves is not necessarily wrong. A world without slavery is preferable to a world with it; as is a world without poor, a world without debt, a world without divorce. But if the option in war is death or slavery some would opt for slavery. And if the option for debtors is prison or slavery (bond-servant) for a duration many would choose slavery. Further, some slaves in the ancient world had very high… Read more »

Job
Guest
Job

Agreed. If memory serves, Stonewall Jackson bought a slave upon the understanding that the man would work independently until he could buy his freedom.

Tom
Guest
Tom

I would be inclined to say it is–specifically, the sin of pride. Why yes, I can make better decisions for you than you can for yourself.

bethyada
Member

Tom, that a person could be sinning in the way you are describing does not mean that all slave-holders sin in this manner. In a fallen world many things are permissible and some things preferable that would not be acceptable in an unfallen world. I can think of unusual situations where this may be the case. If a negative doesn’t exist in our culture we deny there is ever a situation it may be morally okay. Then when it enters we justify it way beyond reason. Abortion is always seen as wrong but careful thinkers acknowledge that in saving a… Read more »

Tom
Guest
Tom

I’m not so sure. It’s sort of like setting yourself up to be an absolute monarch. Guaranteed pride issue.

bethyada
Member

So Abraham was proud?

Tom
Guest
Tom

‘Course he was. Why else would he have taken Hagar into his bed except that he thought he’d noticed something God missed?
Pride is the wellspring of doubt.

bethyada
Member

He was proud to own Hagar before he fathered Ishmael? He was proud because he owned Elieze?

Tom
Guest
Tom

Much better question. Given that I think there’s an inherent pride issue, yes.
There many people who are not fit to be free, but there are no people fit to be their masters.

A. James
Member

Abraham took matters of an heir into his own hands apart from faith in God’s plan and design. Yes, that is pride. God was clear, and the consequences were clear, that trusting himself or Sarah over God in this matter was…not something to be proud about.

bethyada
Member

The celibacy issue is slightly unusual. Many churches have single adult Chrisitans in them and it is expected that as long as they are not married they are not to be sexually active. Why should this be different for people who are attracted to their own sex? Why should they get to act out sexually?

Rob Steele
Guest
Rob Steele

His arguments are for atheism, not Christian tolerance. Wolf.

S_O_T_A
Guest
S_O_T_A

Exactly! Wolf.

Rev. R. W. Shazbot
Guest
Rev. R. W. Shazbot

Vines travels a lot to speak, and he’s going around the country putting on conferences, and he’s got several full time people on staff at the Reformation Project. All this takes a lot of money. And most of the money comes not from lots of donations from Christians, but from two sources: furniture designer Mitchell Gold, who’s Jewish and gay, and the Haas Foundation, funded by a wealthy Jewish businessman, Walter Haas. Maybe someone should ask Vines why he’s getting nearly all of his money to promote gay marriage in Christianity from unbelievers.

A. James
Member

I’m amazed at him being their choice of investment. His debating and reasoning skills are quite lacking and even immature at times. Blatant leaps of logic and illogic rather than reasonable step by step interpretation of the Bible or history or even current cultural context. They need a better “leader” if they hope for more converts.

Tyler
Guest
Tyler

There were about 15 times where I thought, “Mic drop!”

Tony
Guest

I really appreciate you and Dr James white for answering these questions!

John
Member

Loved it. Keeps me coming back for more. Nice job Pastor.

Gradynini
Guest

Good article, I laughed out loud at 39. “Because we had previously given them bibles and taught them how to read them.”

S_O_T_A
Guest
S_O_T_A

I don’t know what to make of Vines other than to proclaim: Wolf! Such a hazy, unbiblical, emotionally manipulative, irrelevant, haughty and self-justifying set of questions. God gave you life through the gift of heterosexuality, Matthew, and you turn your back on it. Of course God is against homosexuality.

Andrew Lohr
Member

James White does the same thing as Doug, answering Vines’ sour grapes:

http://www.aomin.org/aoblog/index.php/2015/07/03/a-believing-response-to-matthew-vines-40-questions/

Nord357
Guest
Nord357

Always giving me good stuff to steal. Thanks Doug.

Claire Wait
Guest

This is just silliness. Is it possible to be smug and silly at the same time? I am a heterosexual married Christian who waited until my wedding night. I have been grappling with where I stand on the homosexuality issue for years. This blog just made me (again) lean toward supporting the gays.

Evan
Guest
Evan

“This is just silliness. Is it possible to be smug and silly at the same time?” Why all the hate?

Steven
Guest
Steven

Your closing statement seems sort of smug and silly, so I think you answered your question.

Conserbatives_conserve_little
Guest
Conserbatives_conserve_little

No matter what is said on this blog, Romans 1is not going away. You CAN NOT love a neighbor, using a biblical definition if you are endorsing them doing something that will prevent them from hearing the Gospel and being saved. Committing homosexual acts hardens the heart. So does stealing.

A. James
Member

“Is it possible to be smug and silly at the same time”… Were you being sarcastic or making fun of Vines being smug and silly by showing how a “heterosexual married Christian who waited” but leaning (again) toward supporting homosexuality also looks…um…smug and silly. If you weren’t trying to be sarcastic to Vines, then…why is it something to “grapple” with. Although the picture makes one wonder to assertions, still though, why would one lean toward supporting gays instead of taking to heart clear biblical passages that SUPPORT, encourage, command your “heterosexual, married, Christian, waiting” choices…and supporting those that are encouraging… Read more »

thing1
Guest
thing1

Do Evangelical Christians actually believe that supporting same-sex marriage is a bigger moral failing than supporting slavery? Please, for the love of all that is good and decent in this world, tell me that’s not so.

David
Guest
David

We see the slavery in our country as a HUGE moral failing, and we recognize that no one is calling for a return to that system (thank God). We see the current moral failing at our doorstep as being no less fundamentally flawed – just as our slavery system couldn’t seem to grasp that people with a different skin color are no less human than whites, we cannot seem to grasp that males and females are sexual and marital compliments, whereas two men and two women are not unless we redefine the essence of marriage to being something bordering on… Read more »

duellsquimby
Member

Especially read Q.18 and follow the link.

carole
Guest
carole

I must say 39 was my favorite!

Sean Shelverton
Member
Sean Shelverton

Thanks for taking the time to share. Appreciate the insight!

Enoch Anti
Guest

Number 37 my best answer

Lichen Craig
Guest
Lichen Craig

He is stuck in “Scripture”. And he is wrong. Many Christians accept gay relationships and gay marriage as NOT sinful, and they are not “sinning’ in doing so, as he proclaims. I, as a straight person and Christian, find his attitude abhorrent. For those struggling with scriptural validation, I would highly recommend a book called The Rebuttal, by Rev. Rommel D. Weekly. I reviewed it here: http://lichencraig.blogspot.com/2013/02/review-rebuttal.html

duellsquimby
Member

Being stuck in Scripture is a good place to be… Something can be wrong and still accepted by throngs of people. History is replete with examples of that.

Lichen Craig
Guest
Lichen Craig

But in this case, based upon scripture, he is wrong in my opinion.

bethyada
Member

You need to specify why you think this is the case, especially given what Scripture appears to say on the face of it. Your review approves of a book but doesn’t defend the pro-gay position.

Charlie Sutton
Guest
Charlie Sutton

He is simply being straightforward. Not a diplomat, by any means – but he says what is needed to a slanted propaganda piece that looks more to political pressure than to Scripture.

Bill Slack
Guest
Bill Slack

Doug.. This is great – The answer to #19 is priceless and points out the absolute absurdity of this position..

Robert Zeurunkl
Guest
Robert Zeurunkl

it wasn’t until I got to the second instance if the same typo that I realized “same sex mirage” was not a typo. ????

Seth Meyers
Guest
Seth Meyers

The problem with Doug Wilson is the rut he has slowly made of merely writing fantastic, trenchant, insightful, and interesting posts. Objectors have to aim for some tangent because the main arguments are beyond their ken.

Robert Zeurunkl
Guest
Robert Zeurunkl

beyond their what?

Jane Dunsworth
Guest
Jane Dunsworth
Andrew
Guest
Andrew

“Slavery – boo, hiss!” Let me suggest that Scripture’s treatment of slavery is a lot more thorough. Firstly, note that the idea of one human “owning” another is hardly non-Scriptural. Kings “own” their subjects, parents “own” their children (e.g. Gal 4:1), husbands “own” their wives, and masters “own” their slaves. Indeed, the Paul’s salvation dialogue are often based around the idea of *whom* you are a slave to. The pressing issue is not ownership, per se, but whom you are owned by, how you treat those who look to you as master, and whether you came by them by fair… Read more »

Katecho
Member

Indeed. Kidnapping and racism are categorically sinful, and to be rejected. However, all the railing against slavery needs a dose of reflection. Any faithful Christian understanding of slavery must find a comfortable peace with the principle that we owe an unpayable debt to our Redeemer, such that we are rightly called slaves of Righteousness (Romans 6:18). True debt, and the holder of that debt, make all the difference.

Mark Allen Sells
Guest
Mark Allen Sells

More Questions for Douglas Wilson and Matthew Vines – The Protestant Church; determined that Matrimony is NOT a sacrament and NOT ‘ordained’ by God, back in the 1500’s. On what basis do you claim religious authority to oppose marriage equality? The Catholic Church claims Matrimony is a sacrament and therefore an instrument of salvation, and a means of entering heaven. Please explain why / how this sacrament works so that it excludes the pariahs, oppressed people and outcasts from society. — I would tend to believe that the love and ministry of our Lord Jesus Christ is with the outcasts… Read more »

Evan
Guest
Evan

“The Protestant Church; determined that Matrimony is NOT a sacrament and NOT ‘ordained’ by God, back in the 1500’s.”

What is your source for this please?

Mark Allen Sells
Guest
Mark Allen Sells

Martin Luther, John Calvin, John Locke, John Knox, John Wesley, …
Anglican Book of Common Prayer, Baptist statement of Faith, Methodist Book of Prayer, …

–> Just Google “Protestant Sacraments” – There’s only two allowed – Baptism and the Holy Supper.

http://www.uncommon-travel-germany.com/protestant-reformation-martin-luther.html

A. James
Member

well now that would be because the Catholic church thinks those things SAVE…a protestant sacrament is not mean to have a saving element…and, per protestantism, matrimony most certainly doesn’t have a saving element and isn’t only for the “church”…as God does not limit marriage to believers…

per Protestantism, marriage would definitely be of God but not as some “sacrament” or “saving grace or ritual” of the church.

at least that’s my take on it.

Mark Allen Sells
Guest
Mark Allen Sells

The (2) Sacraments of The Protestant Church have the distinction of Scriptural Authority for Salvation. That is: “Jesus said in the Scriptures that these are the things we do that get us into Heaven.” Baptism and the Holy Supper. The Protestants may claim religious authority to oppose equal marriage rights as they have in the past. However, Since Marriage is not a Sacrament, and not ordained by God, the fact that the Government grants equal rights for Matrimony to all people, regardless of their status as pariahs in whatever Church for whatever cause, should have no effect on Protestants. The… Read more »

A. James
Member

“The (2) Sacraments of The Protestant Church have the distinction of Scriptural Authority for Salvation. That is: “Jesus said in the Scriptures that these are the things we do that get us into Heaven.” Baptism and the Holy Supper.” —- I’ve never heard that taught in any Protestant church I’ve attended. I’m not used to the term “sacrament” in a Protestant church either. Baptism after salvation (through faith alone in Jesus Christ) was a public identification that you had become a Christian. And the Lord’s Supper, a commemorative time for the church to reflect on His death and resurrection. But… Read more »

Evan
Guest
Evan

From the Westminster Confession of Faith (1646) chapter 24: “I. Marriage is to be between one man and one woman: neither is it lawful for any man to have more than one wife, nor for any woman to have more than one husband at the same time. II. Marriage was ordained for the mutual help of husband and wife; for the increase of mankind with a legitimate issue, and of the Church with an holy seed; and for preventing of uncleanness.” Not sure your argument even gets off the ground since your first assertion is suspect. Maybe you could get… Read more »

ArwenB
Guest
ArwenB

On what basis do you claim religious authority to oppose marriage equality? “Marriage is to be between one man and one woman”. As you yourself quoted above. This concept is taken directly from Genesis, when God created Woman as the complement and suitable helper to Man: one like Man but opposite. If it helps you to visualise that concept, you might imagine a line dividing the left half of your body from the right half. Each half of the body is like the other, but is the other half’s opposite. So it is with Man and Woman. Attempting to put… Read more »

Mark Allen Sells
Guest
Mark Allen Sells

Let us go cherry picking then dear Evan —“Those five commonly called Sacraments, that is to say, Confirmation, Penance, Orders, Matrimony, and Extreme Unction, are not to be counted for Sacraments of the Gospel, being such as have grown partly of the corrupt following of the Apostles, partly are states of life allowed in the Scriptures; but yet have not like nature of Sacraments with Baptism, and the Lord’s Supper, for that they have not any visible sign or ceremony ordained of God.” (Episcopal Book of Common Prayer)

Mark Allen Sells
Guest
Mark Allen Sells

“Marriage is a civic matter. It is really not, together with all its circumstances, the business of the church. It is so only when a matter of conscience is involved” Martin Luther

Mark Allen Sells
Guest
Mark Allen Sells

“The last of all this [discussion of sacraments] is marriage, which, while all admit it to be an institution of God, no man ever saw to be a sacrament, until the time of [Pope] Gregory. And would it ever have occurred to the mind of any sober man? It is a good and holy ordinance of God. And agriculture, architecture, shoemaking, and shaving, are lawful ordinances of God; but they are not sacraments. For in a sacrament, the thing required is not only that it be a work of God, but that it be an external ceremony appointed by God… Read more »

Mark Allen Sells
Guest
Mark Allen Sells

So back to you Evan

Yes, your quote does completely pervert scripture and ethics. Thank You
.

Evan
Guest
Evan

Mark Allen Seals, you said this in your first comment:

“The Protestant Church; determined that Matrimony is NOT a sacrament and NOT ‘ordained’ by God, back in the 1500’s.”

The first part this assertion is correct i suppose, but the second part of this assertion is incorrect. So why go any further?

Mark Allen Sells
Guest
Mark Allen Sells

It was not an assertion, but an inquiry: What is the Biblical authority that God hates fags, or is society substituting cultural norms in place of God’s Salvation?

So far, it looks like a bait and switch. The original thinkers of the Reformation asserted that it was cultural norms, and marriage equality does not block Salvation.

Evan
Guest
Evan

“It was not an assertion, but an inquiry”

Yes, but you were setting up your question with this assertion:

“The Protestant Church; determined that Matrimony is NOT a sacrament and NOT ‘ordained’ by God, back in the 1500’s.”

To which i replied that the second part of that, namely “and NOT ‘ordained’ by God” is not true. Please name me one of the protestant reformers that said marriage was not ordained by God. If you can establish that, then we’ll look at your question. Unless you just want to ditch that assertion and start over.

Mark Allen Sells
Guest
Mark Allen Sells

At this point you are merely trolling by ignoring the entire thread, but I’ll bite. Martin Luther (1483-1546) and John Calvin (1509-1564)began teaching that the Roman Catholic Sacraments are just signs containing no inner working, nor transformative grace, and of those signs there are only two (i.e. Baptism and the Lord’s Supper). Holy Matrimony is not a Sacrament, That opened the door to their next finding; that the institution of marriage is under the purview of the state government, rather than the Church. These are the same quotes provided above (whichever way is up-thread on this crazy blog) MARTIN LUTHER… Read more »

Evan
Guest
Evan

Sorry, I already bowed out of this one, I thought jillybean was helping you out?

Mark Allen Sells
Guest
Mark Allen Sells

No one will step up and explain how they are so sure that God hates fags,

so no.

Evan
Guest
Evan

“No one will step up and explain how they are so sure that God hates fags, so no.” What in the world are you talking about? This was your first question: “The Protestant Church; determined that Matrimony is NOT a sacrament and NOT ‘ordained’ by God, back in the 1500’s. On what basis do you claim religious authority to oppose marriage equality?” To which I engaged a little bit but suggested that you try a Roman Catholic blog as you seem to have questions about the sacrements i.e “The Catholic Church claims Matrimony is a sacrament and therefore an instrument… Read more »

Mark Allen Sells
Guest
Mark Allen Sells

You are the one who constrained the discussion to the Calvinist tradition, saying that that was the purpose of this blog and discussion.

Roman Catholic then? – Explain how your understanding of Christianity and the SEVEN Holy Sacraments handed to the church by the direct divine hand of God the most Holy, the holy Spirit, and his Son Jesus Christ (and not some parochial bigotry) allows you to judge and deny the ministry and grace of the Lord God to pariahs and outcasts.

Evan
Guest
Evan

At first I thought you had a legitimate question since you didn’t come roaring in here puking out insults and slanders like the rest of the fools do, but now I’m starting to wonder. At this point I don’t have time or patience to continue going back and forth with you. Perhaps someone else does. Goodbye.

Mark Allen Sells
Guest
Mark Allen Sells

I knew from the beginning of our conversation that you had no answers to questions, but you are a pleasant troll. I do have a legitimate question, and I do not care whether our playing pitch is the Vatican or the Creation Museum. I don’t think anyone here, especially the blogger overlord, has any legitimate authority to deny “religion” based on any mortal judgement of sin. – I wish to question the authority that these people claim to have. When I do get some answer back – I do test it in the crucible to find true gold …or more… Read more »

Evan
Guest
Evan

Are you still going on about this?! You apparently have a rather large chip on your shoulder which I am not qualified to deal with. I’ve found your questions to be semi incoherent (whether the fault for that lies in me or in you, I’ll let someone else judge that if they want to). I was happy to let someone else engage with you which was why I stepped out of the conversation. So once again Mark Allen Sells the Petty, good bye.

Mark Allen Sells
Guest
Mark Allen Sells

Second- What chip on my shoulder?
I’m pretty sure it’s a pirate tattoo there.

;-)

Consider your own calling, brothers and sisters….
… God chose the foolish of the world to shame the wise,
… the weak of the world to shame the strong,
… the lowly and despised of the world,
those who count for nothing,
…to reduce to nothing those who are something,
so that no human being might boast before God.
1 Cor 1:26-31

Mark Allen Sells
Guest
Mark Allen Sells

First of all – the comment section of this weblog is a fool’s paradise because it, hides and mixes the order of responses in a thread. I thought you were deliberately misunderstanding, but pretty soon it was clear you couldn’t see anything I said in a coherent order. Babylon in the form of a webpage. I love this place.

Jane Dunsworth
Guest
Jane Dunsworth

No, I didn’t constrain the discussion. I provided one single example (the Calvinist tradition) to refute your assertion that the Protestant Reformed didn’t believe that marriage was ordained by God. It only takes one instance within a category to prove a general assertion about a category wrong. As for your second paragraph, huh? I don’t believe that the ministry and grace of the Lord is denied to pariahs and outcasts. I do believe that people who are not capable of being married to one another should not be deceived by the church and state into believing they are married, though.… Read more »

Ian Miller
Member

To clarify, would you consider Biblical evidence of God judging homosexuality as a sin as an example of God hating people who practice homosexuality?

A. James
Member

I am trying to wait for a question I can 1) relate to your religious background enough to speak helpfully–thus thankful for jillybean and 2) figure out where you’d like to focus the conversation. So…here is one I’ll tackle :) “No one will step up and explain how they are so sure that God hates fags,” Has someone here said that God hates homosexuals so that they need to step up? I’m not sure I’d be hanging around if that type of attitude was swirling around, and I don’t recall seeing it. It is the sin, as with all sins,… Read more »

Mark Allen Sells
Guest
Mark Allen Sells

{“Has someone here said that God hates homosexuals so that they need to step up?”}

Yes Douglas Wilson {said that} the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah is exclusively about God’s hatred for faggotry and God’s reaction to homosexuality.

edit
Oh, I do love the Tower of Babel aspects of this weblog – it would seem that Douglas Wilsons comments in “A Brief Sexual Catechism” posted on July 9th are now the same as “A Brief Sexual Catechism 2.0” posted on July 14th. God’s eternal judgement has been removed.
;-)

A. James
Member

Okay, that’s considerably different to me. It’s one thing to say God hates homosexuality, and another to say God hates homosexuals. If you have a link of him saying “God hates homosexuals”, I’d like to see it. I’m new here, so I’m still catching up on his views. Also, I’d be interested in a link to him saying the destruction was EXCLUSIVELY about hatred for homosexuality and His reaction to it. I have heard the arguments for that from plenty of others, but would like to see his statement and explanation, if so. I’m more comfortable, all verses considered, saying… Read more »

Mark Allen Sells
Guest
Mark Allen Sells

So then you are also comfortable that The Lord God commands us to commit abortion and infanticide, as depicted in the Old testament ?

1 Samuel 15

2 This is what the Lord Almighty says: ‘I will punish the Amalekites for what they did to Israel when they waylaid them as they came up from Egypt. 3 Now go, attack the Amalekites and totally destroy[a] all that belongs to them. Do not spare them; put to death men and women, children and infants, cattle and sheep, camels and donkeys.’”

Mark Allen Sells
Guest
Mark Allen Sells

“If you love me, keep my commandments…”

Ian Miller
Member

Does disapproval of homosexual actions, but commitment to serve and assist people who both struggle with and commit to a homosexual lifestyle constitute hatred of homosexuality? Must a Christian accept that homosexuality is a perfectly normal and healthy mode of sexuality to avoid hatred of homosexuals?

Mark Allen Sells
Guest
Mark Allen Sells

I do not believe that Douglas Wilson is correct in asserting (“Time for a Little Q&A”) that “… homosexuality is an objective sin” – Any sort of sexual expression and practice may be supportive and uplifting, or terribly destructive, … or mundane. I do not believe, as Douglas Wilson has done in “A Brief Sexual Catechism”, that a minority group’s petition for redress of civil rights to the government should be re-framed as a question of acceptance by the Church. I fiercely oppose his idea that “…they are demanding our approval above all,…” this is a total straw man fallacy,… Read more »

A. James
Member

If you have a link, I’d be glad to read it.

Mark Allen Sells
Guest
Mark Allen Sells

{“… His hate is nothing to start using as a weapon towards someone elses’ sin…} Douglas Wilson and his followers here are clear that God is the justification for the exclusion and condemnation of “other” people. They claim that other peoples’ sin (a specific sin) prevents them from attaining salvation in the Church. — Yes? Douglas Wilson has opened up the Old Testament Book of Whupass to support his opinions against marriage equality. Therefore ALL the Old Testament Patriarchal Perversions and disgusting misogynistic sins attributed to God, and attached to “Traditional Marriage” may now be assumed to be valid and… Read more »

Jane Dunsworth
Guest
Jane Dunsworth

Neither of those quotes say “not ordained by God.” Nobody believes that the only things ordained by God are properly sacraments. And reformed Protestants definitely do not believe that.

God ordained marriage. It is not a sacrament. Both are true.

Mark Allen Sells
Guest
Mark Allen Sells

Jane, at this point you are also trolling by ignoring the entire thread, but I’ll answer again.

Episcopal Book of Common Prayer –
“Those five commonly called Sacraments, that is to say, Confirmation, Penance, Orders, Matrimony, and Extreme Unction, are not to be counted for Sacraments of the Gospel, being such as have grown partly of the corrupt following of the Apostles, partly are states of life allowed in the Scriptures; but yet have not like nature of Sacraments with Baptism, and the Lord’s Supper, for that they have NOT ANY VISIBLE SIGN OR CEREMONY ORDAINED OF GOD.”

Evan
Guest
Evan

Do you mean the quote from the WCF? Not sure what you’re referring to.

Mark Allen Sells
Guest
Mark Allen Sells

Your quote from the Westminster Confession did not clarify the Biblical authority to oppose marriage equality. It was a statement of cultural norms. – and also referring to you trolling Max Mills in the other thread. ;-) {“…Marriage is to be between one man and one woman: neither is it lawful for any man to have more than one wife, nor for any woman to have more than one husband at the same time.”} While you could have found any number of statements from “Christian denominations” that say the same thing, it is interesting that you chose the “Non-Calvinist” denomination;… Read more »

Jane Dunsworth
Guest
Jane Dunsworth

The point of the quote was to address your erroneous assertion that marriage is “NOT ordained by God.” The first line of paragraph II explicitly refutes this. And it is not a statement of cultural norms, any more than the Catechism of the Catholic Church is a statement of cultural norms. It is a confession of the church as to the mind of God on the matter.

Mark Allen Sells
Guest
Mark Allen Sells

HelIo Jane – I also quoted from the same document as Evan chose. The Westminster Confession of Faith – The purpose of the Westminster Assembly, in which 121 Puritan clergymen participated, was to provide official documents for the reformation of the Church of England (founded by King Henry VIII for his personal pleasure). The original document stated that the Roman Catholic Pope was in fact the anti-christ foretold in the book of Revelations, and has the same imprimatur and force as their statement on marriage. Would you say then that this is a sober reflection of studious Bible study free… Read more »

Jane Dunsworth
Guest
Jane Dunsworth

First, had King Henry had his way, (anachronistically) there would never have been a Westminster Assembly. Henry didn’t want the church reformed in any way, shape, or form, he simply wanted it separately established in England so that the crown could be the head of it rather than the Pope. The actual reformation of the Church of England happened because in Henry’s time, there were already people seeking genuine reformation, and Henry’s somewhat self-serving move (although it was rather more complex and somewhat less execrable than “personal pleasure,” if you actually understand the history) gave them an opportunity for what… Read more »

Mark Allen Sells
Guest
Mark Allen Sells

Jane – You are trolling by ignoring the thread. Either you give up, or explain how your understanding of Christianity (and not bigotry) allows you to judge and deny the ministry and grace of the Lord God to pariahs and outcasts. While You could have found any number of statements from “Christian denominations” to post that say the same thing. However, the Lord God does not ordain marriage in the Lutheren or Calvinist tradition. NOT The purpose that Henry VIII of England chose to found the Church of England was “Non-Calvinist” marriage: so that he could retain the “Divine Right… Read more »

Jane Dunsworth
Guest
Jane Dunsworth

You obviously don’t understand a single thing about Henry’s position in his split with Rome. He initiated the split so he could retain the uniquely CATHOLIC, biblically unknown, position on marriage — that one could not legitimately be married to his brother’s widow, and thereby get his unfruitful marriage to Catherine annulled. Yes, his motives were deeply mixed in that it was very convenient for him to come to this realization after she failed to give him an heir. “Divine Right of Kings” is anachronistic in the situation. He was the heir of a victor in a civil war a… Read more »

John F. Kennedy
Guest
John F. Kennedy

Wow! Nice punch, Jane. Looks to me like he’s down for the count.

Mark Allen Sells
Guest
Mark Allen Sells

WFC. —> Sacraments are holy signs and seals of the covenant of grace,[1] immediately instituted by God,[2] to represent Christ and His benefits; and to confirm our interest in Him:[3] as also, to put a visible difference between those that belong unto the Church and the rest of the world;[4] and solemnly to engage them to the service of God in Christ, according to His Word.[5] II. There is, in every sacrament, a spiritual relation, or sacramental union, between the sign and the thing signified: whence it comes to pass, that the names and effects of the one are attributed… Read more »

Mark Allen Sells
Guest
Mark Allen Sells

Why are you so worried about denomination. I can confine my question to the precepts of the reformation.

Evan
Guest
Evan

“The Catholic Church claims Matrimony is a sacrament and therefore an instrument of salvation, and a means of entering heaven.”

Wait, what? Again, you’re probably in the wrong place. You might want to go try some Roman Catholic blogs.

Mark Allen Sells
Guest
Mark Allen Sells

Oh thou blog purist. From your collected rants, I gather that thou’rt unable to answer (or even pose) theological questions. Go play GTA IV

Jill Smith
Member

Hi Mark, as a Catholic I believe that the sacraments are the grace of God made visible to us as we make our earthly pilgrimage. While the grace of God is essential to salvation, I don’t think Catholics are encouraged to put their faith in the sacraments as a surefire rocket to heaven. I think I understand the point you are making, but no Catholic would argue that marriage is so necessary to salvation that those who cannot participate in it are at a spiritual disadvantage. If anything, the Church has historically tended to depict marriage as a second best.… Read more »

Evan
Guest
Evan

Yay, there is a Roman Catholic on this blog! Thanks Jillybean, I was at a bit of a loss as to what Mark Allen Sells was getting at. I will now humbly bow out of this conversation. :)

Mark Allen Sells
Guest
Mark Allen Sells

{“There is simply no way to make this teaching palatable.”} I agree {“…But that doesn’t make it necessarily untrue.’} Whether or not it is “true” is the intent of my original inquiry. I would think “Truthyness” in the Roman Catholic Rite should have some basis in the Bible, and in the Ministry of Christ Jesus. Why are some people excluded and others not? It does not appear to be based on the ministry of Christ Jesus. {“… If anything, the Church has historically tended to depict marriage as a second best.”} Yes, – The Sacrament of Matrimony was not original… Read more »

Jill Smith
Member

Hi Mark, I should have been clearer about the homeless mentally ill. Far from being excluded from God’s love, I would think they are the object of His special tenderness. I wasn’t suggesting that they should not be allowed to marry. My point was more that the grace associated with a particular sacrament may not be the most useful in helping someone live a Christian life. The Eucharist is a fountain of grace, but I would prefer to start by giving the homeless mentally ill food, shelter, and medication. I don’t think a well-instructed Catholic would believe that somebody “different”… Read more »

Douglas Michael Singer
Guest
Douglas Michael Singer

Pr. Wilson — I know the comments are going cold, making this question unlikely to be noticed, but as an additional question to the forty you answered, I am curious to know the counsel you would give in the following hypothetical situation. Say a transgendered person becomes a Christian — the kind who goes to heaven when he/she dies — would you advise they reverse their “gender modifications” and return to their original gender? Or just call it a former sin now covered under God’s grace, and leave well enough alone?

jesuguru
Guest
jesuguru

Equally late response, but I suspect Doug would suggest that just as a sexual union of two men or two women isn’t marriage, likewise surgically altering your genitals, taking hormones, and buying a new wardrobe doesn’t actually change your God-given gender (i.e. xx chromosome for girls, xy for boys).

herewegokids
Guest
herewegokids

For the first time ever I almost completely agree w you. Probably bc youve mostly agreed w the Church.

drewnchick
Member

Like shooting tin cans off a fence post…

Marc Heatherington
Guest
Marc Heatherington

My only disagreement is with #13. In 1 Thess 4:1-8, we read a commandment to avoid sexual immorality. In verse 8, it says that anyone who rejects this command has rejected God.

Tom©
Guest
Tom©

Doug does say that they are sinning grieviously and will not inherit the kingdom, but that is inconsistent with being a genuine Christian. (Not the sinning, but the inheriting).

B.V.R.U.
Guest
B.V.R.U.

Growing up at Christ Church/CEF/Logos, celibacy was a bit of a dirty word by virtue of the community-wide fixation on marriage and childbearing. Celibacy as a concept seemed guilty by virtue of its association with Catholic monasticism, and weird, lonely single people, and it was intellectually dismissed in like manner.

But I must say the concept seems to be enjoying quite a resurgence here.

Evangelicalism might hope to be taken seriously on this front if it possessed an establish, respectably tradition of celibacy.

rarw
Guest
rarw

Lemme fix 16 for you. “Do you feel opposing slaves freedom and racial equality, and supporting apartheid is more or less evil than opposing marriage equality and supporting discrimination” ?

Aaron Moore
Guest
Aaron Moore

A few weeks ago my friend’s ex-boyfriend killed himself. Though he did not (as far as I’m aware) leave a suicide note, it’s clear to those closest to him why he put that gun to his head: as a Primitive Baptist he truly believed that God hated him because he was a gay man and he lived a deeply tortured life as a result. Like too many he was unable to live life totally deprived of that deepest level of companionship, and unable to bear the burden of knowing that a large part of himself, indeed his very ability to… Read more »

Jill Smith
Member

I am so sorry for all the pain you have experienced. Words from a stranger don’t mean much, but I felt very sad reading what you wrote.

Marmat Kat
Guest
Marmat Kat

Don’t forget – the bible is fiction full of made up stories that an unbrainwashed (i.e., non-religious) five year old would find ridiculous. But we have adults believing in talking snakes, global floods, invisible people, and other nonsense made up by ignorant pre-science goatherds three hairs away from cavemen. Grow up!

Steven
Guest
Steven

Well, I, for one, am highly impressed by this mature display of maturity…and stuff.

Mark Allen Sells
Guest
Mark Allen Sells

If we were to examine the current institute and practice of marriage by the advice of Saint Paul – would it not be more to the the point to take a look at 1 Corinthians 5:1-5? Paul is outraged and speaks of the shame and mourning for the entire community because someone in their midst has committed the sin of King Oedipus. – Saint Paul condemns the sinner to death in absentia. What does this mean to us today? If some man takes his mom, (or step mom) as a wife. I would not expect that the happy couple would… Read more »

L.W. Dicker
Guest
L.W. Dicker

One problem with bringing in the Bible to offer guidance in our modern world is that the Bible was written over two thousand years ago by a bunch of superstitious, pre scientific goat sacrificing religious fanatics who didn’t know where the sun went at night. The authors of the Bible no more had an understanding of something like homosexuality than they did quantum physics. So, when quoting the Bible as some kind of a guide to morality today please keep in mind that this is a book that has more ignorant caveman bullshit per page than a Kirk Cameron guide… Read more »

Mark Allen Sells
Guest
Mark Allen Sells

Apparently ignorant caveman bullshit gets results, or else why are all the Bible thumping Republican State Governors and Conservative Presidential Candidates getting to be so popular by repeating anti-equal rights, anti-science, xenophobic, militaristic, coded racist messeges?

L.W. Dicker
Guest
L.W. Dicker

Because the United States has a population where at least 50% of the people believe in the literal truth contained in an ancient book of myths and bullshit.

You don’t have to aim high when your audience is full of deluded Jebus freaks.

Evan
Guest
Evan

You seem to be an expert on what the Bible is. Can you give an account for any of these claims?

Gary B
Guest
Gary B

Wow, the bullshit here is profound. God loves gay people as much as straight people because God made all people and God doesn’t make mistakes, but man does, like by not writing down the words that are in the bible for decades after they happened, choosing what to include and not to include, major errors of translation over time and the absolutely INANE believe that the Bible is the exact word of God. God and Jesus loves all people, LGBT and straight – there is no sin in any of that. And all those LGBT are your spiritual brothers and… Read more »

FrJ+
Guest
A. James
Member

Interesting. Mind blowing how orthodoxy in so many denominations/religions is so smoothly confidently left behind. What strikes me is how this is a perfect parallel example of what is happening to the U.S. Constitution. The concept of a Living Constitution (or evolving, loose constructionists) vs. Strict Constructionists (or “originalism”) And the concept of a Living, evolving Bible vs. Strict Constructionists…or something… “Living Constitution (or loose constructionism) is the claim that the Constitution has a dynamic meaning or that it has the properties of an animate being in the sense that it changes. The controversial idea is associated with views that… Read more »

FrJ+
Guest
FrJ+

Well, actually the author/responder is an Episcopalian priest. The Episcopalians have gone completely by the wayside. Rome continues to hold firm on paper but it is as you suspect that many of them too have gone by the wayside. There are dark days ahead I’m afraid.

A. James
Member

YES, yes, I realized that after posting my comment but figured I had said enough :)
“firm on paper”, yes, there are usually many steps before they feel the time is right to change what’s on paper, but how they don’t appreciate members questioning any of those many steps in concern for said paper…and by the end, the concerned members are unconcerned, approving, or outnumbered.