In landmark move, Methodist bishop defies church law and colleagues to marry gay couple

Bobby Prince and Joe Openshaw (above), of Birmingham, Alabama, are getting married on Saturday, October 26. They are members of the United Methodist Church, the second largest Protestant denomination in the United States after the Southern Baptist Convention. Naturally enough, Bobby and Joe wanted to get married before their friends, family, and church family in their church home, Discovery United Methodist Church of Hoover, AL.

That special blessing will be denied the couple, though. Why? Because constituting the law and doctrine of the United Methodist Church is The Book of Discipline. Despite the objections of a great many Methodists (e.g., A Methodist to their Madness), The Book of Discipline, revised and sanctioned in 2012, reads:

Regarding the ministry of the ordained

¶ 304.3
While persons set apart by the Church for ordained ministry are subject to all the frailties of the human condition and the pressures of society, they are required to maintain the highest standards of holy living in the world. The practice of homosexuality is incompatible with Christian teaching. Therefore self-avowed practicing homosexuals1 are not to be certified as candidates, ordained as ministers, or appointed to serve in The United Methodist Church.2

1. “Self-avowed practicing homosexual” is understood to mean that a person openly acknowledges to a bishop, district superintendent, district committee of ordained ministry, board of ordained ministry, or clergy session that the person is a practicing homosexual. See Judicial Council Decisions 702, 708, 722, 725, 764, 844, 984, 1020
2. See Judicial Council Decisions 984, 985, 1027, 1028

¶ 341.6
Ceremonies that celebrate homosexual unions shall not be conducted by our ministers and shall not be conducted in our churches.

(Italics mine.)

Despite The Book of Discipline, retired Methodist Bishop Melvin G. Talbert decided to travel from his home in Tennessee to Alabama to marry Joe and Bobby. Hosting the ceremony will be Covenant Community Church in Center Point, which is affiliated with the United Church of Christ, a mainline Protestant denomination that blesses same-sex unions.

Debra Wallace-Padgett, Bishop of the Methodist North Alabama Conference (home to some 137,000 Methodists), took considerable exception to Bishop Talbert’s decision. In a press release dated September 30, 2013, Wallace-Padgett wrote:

A retired United Methodist bishop notified me that he plans to travel to North Alabama, the area for which I am responsible, with the intention of breaking church law. …. I urged the retired bishop to reconsider as his officiating at this ceremony would be in violation of United Methodist Church law. … Every person is welcome in our churches. The [Book of Discipline] of our denomination also states that we consider the practice of homosexuality as incompatible with Christian teaching. Our ministers are not permitted to conduct ceremonies that celebrate homosexual unions or perform same sex wedding ceremonies.

Bishop Wallace-Padgett’s (weirdly name-avoiding) statement was supported by the Council of Bishops of the United Methodist Church, which, in a statement issued Wednesday, also strongly urged Bishop Talbert not to marry Bobby and Joe:

The bishops of the church are bound together in a covenant and all ordained elders are committed to uphold the Book of Discipline. Conducting ceremonies which celebrate homosexual unions; or performing same-sex wedding ceremonies are chargeable offenses in the United Methodist Church. (¶2702.1.b)

(For an eloquent dissension from the Council’s opinion, see this letter from one of their members: Bishop Mary Ann Swenson writes dissent on Council Birmingham statement, in which Bishop Swenson writes: “It is written in the Scriptures that our risen savior Christ Jesus broke the Sabbath commandments and healed those who needed healing. Jesus broke these commandments not for the sake of disregarding the law but to follow the spirit of the law found in the greatest commandments to love God and to love neighbor.” And hey! I recognize that reasoning! At the October 10th Washington D.C. press conference for the Not All Like That (NALT) Christians Project, I said, “Christ proved he wants us to always choose compassion over legalism when he healed the man at the pool at Bethesda. He did that in violation of the fourth commandment not to work on the Sabbath. He broke the law for love.” Which I think proves beyond a doubt that Bishop Swenson and I did a trans-Internet mind meld! Yayeth!)

The censure of the Methodists’ Council of Bishops failed to dissuade or cower Bishop Talbert, who yesterday told AllAlabama.com:

We as the church have the privilege of inviting people to come to God’s table, but we do not say which ones can and which ones can’t. They are all created in the image of God. They all have a place at God’s table. They should not be excluded. … The time has come for us to pull the cover off and be honest with ourselves. At every level of this church there are people serving in partnered relationships, but we don’t talk about it. As long as we don’t talk about it, it’s okay. I find that to be hypocritical. … The church has said a lot of things down through the ages; the church has been on the wrong side of issues, such as the role and place of black people. The Methodist church split over the issue of slavery. The church was on the wrong side when it said it would not ordain women. It’s just painful that generation after generation, we have to find somebody to exclude to feel that we are important and significant.

The wedding of Bobby Prince and Joe Openshaw will commence tomorrow as planned. It will be the first public same-sex wedding ever presided over by a United Methodist bishop.

We wish all of God’s blessings upon Bobby, Joe, their friends and family, the mighty Bishop Talbert, Covenant Community Church, and Bishop Mary Ann Swenson.

About John Shore

John Shore (who, fwiw, is straight) is the author of UNFAIR: Christians and the LGBT Question, and three other great books. He is founder of Unfundamentalist Christians (on Facebook here), and executive editor of the Unfundamentalist Christians group blog.  (In total John's two blogs receive some 250,000 views per month.) John is also co-founder of The NALT Christians Project, which was written about by TIME,  The Washington Post, and others. His website is JohnShore.com. You're invited to like John's Facebook page. Don't forget to sign up for his mucho-awesome newsletter.

  • Pastor_D

    Holding our siblings in Christ and the UMC in God’s light. Amen.

    • Mike Wood

      1 Timothy 2:4 “Who desires all men to be saved and to come to the full knowledge of the truth.”

      • cajaquarius

        A good line. We understand more about the revelation of these truths with each passing generation.

        • http://rtiposters.com/ Mike Wood

          Sorry, it’s not ‘a good line’ it’s Bible Scripture. And it’s unchanging.

          • Sharla Hulsey

            The Scripture may not change (although as scholarship develops, more and better manuscripts are discovered and studied, etc., translations do and should change to reflect the advances), but interpretations of Scripture DO change. It’s been my experience that people who insist on the “inerrancy” of Scripture actually believe in the inerrancy of THEIR INTERPRETATION of Scripture.

            Remember, also, that many Christian traditions seek to understand matters of faith using more than just Scripture as their guide. Since we are talking about a United Methodist bishop here, I point you to the Wesleyan Quadrilateral, in which Scripture, tradition, reason and experience each have a role to play. With regard to the matter at hand, we might look at it this way:

            Scripture: There are six verses that have been interpreted as condemning homosexual behavior. There are THOUSANDS that speak of loving our neighbors. We have the witness of the Gospels about how Jesus treated people whom his religious establishment considered to be “sinners.” So to which do we give greater weight? We can’t simply say, “It’s in the Book!” because so is Jesus, so is “love your neighbor as yourself,” and so on.

            Tradition: This is where the Book of Discipline comes into play, I think (I’m not Methodist so someone else may wish to chime in on this). It’s the teachings and the longstanding understanding that the Church has passed down from generation to generation. Tradition says, “homosexuality is incompatible with Christian teaching.” But Methodists also have other teachings and traditions that may cast a different light on the matter.

            Reason: In addition to what’s in the Bible and what the church teaches, we have understandings that we’ve received from science and from other disciplines. Science cannot yet explain why some people are homosexual; but what we do now understand is that it’s not a choice that a person makes, but an orientation they have throughout their lives–and there are pretty compelling hypotheses out there that indicate sexuality is not black and white, but falls along a continuum–for ALL of us. So as we seek to understand Scripture and Tradition, we also have Reason that comes into the mix. Scripture pretty clearly does not have any conception of homosexuality as an orientation. Genesis 1′s cosmology isn’t in keeping with what we know now because of scientific study of the earth and the universe. So Reason helps us to figure out how to understand Scripture when its scientific knowledge is out of date.

            And then there’s Experience. Many of us know people who are LGBT; others of us are OURSELVES LGBT. Experience shows us several things. First, we and our friends/kinfolk know we didn’t choose our sexuality. I didn’t any more decide to be straight than my gay friend chose to be gay. Second, it is as possible for gay people to form lifelong, monogamous, loving bonds as it is for straight people. Third, Experience teaches us that requiring lifelong celibacy and denial of any opportunity for forming that lifelong partnership should be reserved for a select few who truly are called to that by God; to say that any group of people, because of something they never chose, may never have the lifelong partnerships that we straight people take for granted, is thoughtless at best and cruel at worst.

            As we seek to determine what we as Christians believe about homosexuality, if we follow the Wesleyan Quadrilateral, we need to take all these things into consideration. There’s not a whole lot of clarity about where we SHOULD stand; so humility is in order as we seek to figure this out. And Christians are going to study the same Bible and church teachings, but their reason and experience may lead them to completely different opinions.

            (Apologies to Methodists if I have misrepresented this; as I said, I am not myself Methodist, although I did have to study Wesleyan theology in seminary.)

          • http://rtiposters.com/ Mike Wood

            You’ve totally missed my point. Church practices, traditions, opinions, etc.. change yes, but that’s not what I’m referring to. I’m referring to the unchanging everlasting Word of God. There is no “new manuscripts” that is a lie.

            If you seriously think you or anyone can change the interpretation of Romans 1:26-27, then many the Lord open your eyes! Maybe you should re-read it.

            Romans 1:26-27 “For this reason God gave them up to vile passions. For even their women exchanged the natural use for what is against nature. 27 Likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust for one another, men with men committing what is shameful, and receiving in themselves the penalty of their error which was due.”

          • Sharla Hulsey

            No, I’m not talking about “new” manuscripts. Some of what is being found are actually manuscripts that are older than anything we’ve had so far. Remember that we have absolutely NO original manuscripts of anything in the Bible. We have some that are very old, but even they are second- or third-generation copies at best. And they don’t always agree in every word, every vowel point, every detail. So which Word of God is “unchanging everlasting,” when our manuscripts aren’t identical and we have no idea which one is the correct one, given that we have no originals?

          • http://rtiposters.com/ Mike Wood

            Please stick to the topic, can you please comment on Romans 1:26-27? It’s interesting how you divert attention away from the Scriptures by predetermining that Scripture is faulty to begin with, very convenient.

            Your comment concerning manuscripts is a separate issue, and I assure you, you couldn’t be more wrong.

          • cajaquarius

            Ah yes, Romans. I can comment on that for you.

            At the time this was written the Cult of Diana was the primary religion in power in Ephesus and surrounding reigons and cities. At the time of the disciples Ephesus was sort of like the New York City of the region and a trend setter, being the biggest and most cosmopolitan city in Rome at the time. The early Christianity had to face off against this very faith. The Cult of Diana often engaged in fertility rituals in which people would become drunk, men would dress up in womens clothing, and female practitioners would proceed to penetrate the males with wooden phalli. We know these sorts of intimate details about Roman society because the Romans were meticulous in their bureaucracy and left a veritable treasure trove of artifacts and writings for our archaeologists to find.

            In addition, it was very common for rape to be used as a tool of domination of the time (much as today). Legionnaires would rape women and children of cities they invaded, slave owners would rape their slaves, and so on. Considering that God had strict rules about how to treat slaves for his people as well as rules against getting hammered and doing fertility rituals to other deities one can easily see why the disciples would have taken a very dim view of much of the Roman culture of the time. Getting fed to lions and tortured to death when they eventually crossed the wrong magistrate probably didn’t help. Rome is who they were writing much of the New Testament to. The Wisdom there is timeless, but the specifics are geared towards Rome.

            Is that to say it no longer applies? Only someone who was morally/intellectually lazy would come to that conclusion. The unchanging Wisdom of God is found there, in the underlying message of how to treat those who are beneath you. Raping people weaker than you to inspire fear and dominate them is a drive born of the Flesh. Getting sloshed and performing rituals designed to aid you in getting pregnant or having a healthy child is a waste of time and self serving. This is a common problem with many pagan faiths; the focus is always on you you you (eg the Three Fold Rule, Karma, and so on – all of these things do inspire you to do good but for the wrong reasons whereas Christ and God call you to do good out of genuine love for the people you serve). Both are born of selfishness. Selfishness is antithetical to the things Christ taught and the way he lived. The way he served the poor, washed the feet of his followers, and demonstrated that very Wisdom in His actions.

            Glad I could clear that up for you, Mikey. Didn’t have to divert or anything; the answer is right there in the Scripture read within the context of the age it was written in.

  • MaryMarriott

    I luv ‘non-douchey christian’ – maybe I’ll adopt it for meself ! :)

  • mindy

    Well said – thank you, Bishop Talbert – and John, for sharing the story.

  • Carol B. Hollebeek

    As a gay member of the UMC,I am proud to count Bishop Talbert as a brother in Christ – and will fully support Biblical Obedience…our covenant is with God and God alone. There is a growing groundswell of Methodists: Methodists in New Directions, Reconciling Ministries and more whose voices are getting louder and stronger within the Denomination. I, for one, am really tired of: “Be patient…change comes slowly…” There are so many who are afraid of being “found out” to be gay for fear of their ministries and vocations. It’s ok to be gay, as long as you don’t “flaunt” it…..There is another wedding planned by another UMC pastor in the near future, and 30 other clergy are standing up and standing with that pastor on that day-they will ALL take part…what if it were 300? Will the UMC continue to hold to their “covenant” when members and clergy are leaving in droves? Are they going to put 31 Pastors on trial at the same time? Who will pastor those churches? It’s as if the Captain of the Titanic is saying “What iceberg? There’s no iceberg..” The powers that be can hold to the language and covenant of the Book of Discipline that was placed there 40 years ago and what? Jesus followers will say, “Oh, ok?”
    Watch closely in the next few months, you may be witness to the sinking of a great and once noble ship….

    • Sharla Hulsey

      “Be patient” and “wait” messages generally come from those who have vested interests in things not changing. There comes a time when impatience and no longer waiting are the more Godly courses of action.

      • Carol B. Hollebeek

        I couldn’t agree more!

      • Mike Wood

        Hebrews 13:8 “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today, yes, even forever.”

      • http://rtiposters.com/ Mike Wood

        Revelation 22:19 “And if anyone takes away from the words of the scroll of this prophecy, God will take away his part from the tree of life and out of the holy city, which are written in this scroll.”

        2 Timothy 3:16 “All Scripture is God-breathed and profitable for teaching, for conviction, for correction, for instruction in righteousness,”

        • Sharla Hulsey

          You need to do more than just toss Scripture grenades that have been wrenched out of their context. Use them to make a point, if you must; but don’t just throw them out there like that.

          • http://rtiposters.com/ Mike Wood

            Okay lets start with you, shall we? Can you please refer to just one Bible verse that supports homosexuality? You and everyone on here bases their opinions on self, not the authority of God! That is why I’ve quoted the many verses on this blog. I’d rather be divided by truth, than united by error!

          • Sharla Hulsey

            You know perfectly well that you cannot base an argument on the absence of Scriptural support. You wouldn’t accept it if I said that Jesus must have been okay with homosexuality since he never mentioned it, would you?

            There are some things on which the Bible is not clear. We cannot go to the Bible for clear guidance about whether or how Christians should watch television or use computers, because the Bible knew nothing about those things. Yet we who study and value the Bible will say it helps us to understand our relationship with those things–not because the Bible says clearly, “Thou shalt not watch television,” but because there are other things in the Bible from which we can draw understandings that may help us decide these matters for ourselves.

            Similarly, the Bible is not clear about homosexuality as an orientation or about the right or wrong of committed, monogamous partnerships freely entered into by consenting same-gender couples. We can take the six verses which have been interpreted as condemning of homosexuality into consideration, but if our interpretation is inconsistent with the whole witness of Scripture (and I would tend to argue that a condemnatory reading of those texts is inconsistent with the whole witness of Scripture), we need to rethink it, taking into account passages that speak of mutual love, love of neighbor, and the multiplicity of models for marriage that we find in the Bible. (No, the Bible is NOT clear that the only correct marriage is one man-one woman.)

  • http://jesuswithoutbaggage.wordpress.com/ jesuswithoutbaggage

    This is good news! Thanks for sharing. It is important to change by going through proper channels, but sometimes it is important to step out and make a difference now. And it is fully time to act now.

    I applaud Bishop Melvin G. Talbert’s dedicated decision! And I wish a happy marriage to tomorrow’s newly wedded couple.

  • Benny Cox

    Pretty Great! Out of anarchy comes truth. My Inner Buddha dances for Bishop Talbert

  • Mike Wood

    Hmmmmmm…. you all know the saying; “what would Jesus do” well really, what would He do, what would He say? I see no mention of anything Biblical here, just comments about change.

    • Sharla Hulsey

      What WOULD he do? We have to look at what he DID do. What he did do was welcome and sit at table with people that his religious establishment considered to be “sinners.” Who are the equivalent people today?

  • Mike Wood

    “You shall not lie with a male as one lies with a woman; it is an abomination.” – Leviticus 18:22

    • Sharla Hulsey

      But that term “abomination” is also used to describe the eating of shellfish and many other things we Christians are perfectly willing to do. I have heard that the word in Hebrew can mean something much different than our understanding of what “abomination” means. It’s more like, “Those other nations do that stuff; we don’t do that.”

  • Mike Wood

    Something to think about since many of you are all for “change.” Remember Hebrews 13:8 “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today, yes, even forever.”

    • cajaquarius

      Jesus allowed children to come to him and, when his disciples attempted to stop this, Jesus scolded them in saying that the Kingdom of Heaven was made for ones such as these. At the time, children were never to approach a rabbi like this; it was considered a taboo for Jews because children were not yet fully understanding of the Law of Abraham and Moses. So why would Jesus allow such a thing? You put too much stock in the Law. All people have Good written on their heart and always have, I suspect – all we learn as we age is wickedness. One can’t teach morality, one can only deprogram learned evil. I am relatively certain this is what Jesus and the unchanging Holy Spirit refer to. The same today, yesterday, and tomorrow.

      There is also mention of the Holy Spirit spreading like a fire across the world in Scripture. I tend to look at how good we have become as people compared to what we once were and think this prophecy has merit – we certainly are getting better, morally. We aren’t there yet (deprograming eight thousand years of evil can’t be done overnight, after all), but we are getting better as time goes.

      What you view as “change” is merely our growing recognition of that Holy Spirit that every human soul has written on it. If you choose to ignore that and cling to the flaccid wisdom of Flesh then that is your business and your choice.

      • http://rtiposters.com/ Mike Wood

        It’s always so obvious when a person guards either their own or others point of view or ideology pertaining to an unBiblical doctrine or practice, because they never use Bible Scripture! One can use all the fancy words they wish, or quote ‘church history’,or utilize the ‘wisdom’ of men which is foolishness to God (1 Cor. 3:19), to prop up ungodly views all they want.

        I would challenge any Christian, who supports homosexuality, to find anything in Scripture to justify the abominable act. Any Christian will admit there is not such one verse.

        Revelation 22:19 “And if anyone takes away from the words of the scroll of this prophecy, God will take away his part from the tree of life and out of the holy city, which are written in this scroll.”

        2 Timothy 3:16 “All Scripture is God-breathed and profitable for teaching, for conviction, for correction, for instruction in righteousness,”

        • cajaquarius

          Why would I need to find a Scriptural support for homosexual relationships, Mike? There is nothing in Scripture that speaks against homosexuality. Sure, there are a few lines here and there about temple prostitution and some provisional laws written for a specific era but no real laws against a loving homosexual relationship to be found anywhere in Scripture.

          Bible Scripture was translated and compiled by human beings and modern archaeology and historical documents cast doubts as to whether Timothy 2 was even written by Paul. It is you who is relying on the Wisdom of the Flesh, Mikey. You are taking the easy road – the one that offers the easiest path. Did Christ take the easy path? I find it hard to believe He would support you or have left you such an easy path to follow as the “Infallible Word” myth you seem to buy into just because your leaders told you to. To believe the Bible is the literal word of God is to raise the human beings who translated and interpreted that Word for you the level of God – thus you believe yourself and your own Wisdom to be equal to that of God. By reading the Bible outside of the context of the age it was written in you are in violation of Revealation 22:19 yourself, champ.

          Will you believe me, though? Unlikely. Your heart is hardened and your ears itch for whatever sounds easiest to you. You have chosen your God, Mike Wood, and that God is Man. I pray you find a way out of your idolatrous ways for you won’t find happiness or fulfillment there.

    • Sharla Hulsey

      Jesus Christ may be the same. But human opinions, interpretations, etc., DO change.

  • Mike Wood

    Romans 1:26-27

    26 For this reason God gave them up to vile passions. For even their women exchanged the natural use for what is against nature. 27 Likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust for one another, men with men committing what is shameful, and receiving in themselves the penalty of their error which was due.

    If Christians support these sexual immoral acts, are they guilty by association? I wouldn’t want to be in those shoes.

    • cajaquarius

      Ah, this old canard again~ Never get tired of these.

      The Historical Critical Method of Bible Interpretation casts some light on why there are different interpretations of Scripture, generally, concerning these issues. In the case of Romans, at the time this scripture was written the Cult of Diana was prevalent in much of Rome and, especially, in Ephesus. The Cult was known for fertility rituals in which men dressed in women’s clothing and were penetrated by wooden phalli worn by actual women. In Leviticus, the Canaanites were said to engage in similar rituals to the goddess Ashtar where grown men would accost younger males of the group after getting them drunk – and this is assuming the Israelites even had dealings with them, which current evidence points out as being unlikely. Regardless, your throwing out texts is reading the Scripture out of proper historical context and outside of the scope of existing archaeological evidence of the actual Israelites and the places these texts have originated.

      You have taken the easy path and follow an interpretation that pleases your itchy ears. So, who fares worse then, when the moment of judgment comes, I wonder? The people humble enough to recognize that human beings aren’t God’s equal in Wisdom and, thus, are willing to admit their long held traditions or views of Scripture might be wrong? Or those who simply ignore revelation and their own conscience in favor of following the path of the Pharisees down the wide, easy path of following the letter of the law?

      • http://rtiposters.com/ Mike Wood

        Revelation 22:19 “And if anyone takes away from the words of the scroll of this prophecy, God will take away his part from the tree of life and out of the holy city, which are written in this scroll.”

        • Sharla Hulsey

          That passage refers only to the book of Revelation, not to the entire Bible. Try again.

          • http://rtiposters.com/ Mike Wood

            Clearly your not a Christian, I’m sorry you don’t understand the Word of God. If you want to use your own wisdom or others as a guide, that is your prerogative. But when it comes to Scripture, you will not find one to support homosexuality.

            Remember ALL SCRIPTURE is God breathed! ALL Scripture is the authority of God!

            2 Timothy 3:16 “All Scripture is God-breathed and profitable for teaching, for conviction, for correction, for instruction in righteousness,”

            Deuteronomy 4:2 “You shall not add to the word which I command you, nor take from it, that you may keep the commandments of the Lord your God which I command you.”

            If you think you can manipulate Scripture to prop up your own homosexuality views, then may God help you to overcome, and understand what He is saying is abominable.

            To debate this topic further is futile, if you or others base your “authority” on opinion, which is contrary to the Word of God.

            If you or anyone wishes to support their homosexual views based on Bible Scripture, then please quote just one supporting verse.

          • Sharla Hulsey

            Precisely what defines a “Christian” in your view, then?

            I was baptized at age seven. I’ve never known a time when I didn’t believe in Jesus. I have read and studied the Bible since I have been able to read. I’ve sought to follow Jesus and have devoted my life to helping others also follow Jesus. My particular church has examined my life, my faith, and my beliefs and determined that I am a Christian and am qualified to be ordained to Christian ministry.

            So who are you, based on the fact that I have posted a few comments on a blog that indicate I disagree with your interpretation of Scripture, to determine that “clearly” I am not a Christian?

          • http://rtiposters.com/ Mike Wood

            I apologize, and was not fair of me to assume you are not a Christian.

            But when a person argues and is in support of a ‘vile and abominable’ act according to what Bible Scripture clearly says homosexuality is, their Biblical understanding easily comes into question; especially when the Bible is not used as the authority to begin with.

            If two parties do not agree, that the Holy Scriptures is the Inerrant Word of God, then the debate or argument is futile.

            Based on your description of faith, you must believe in the authority of God, you must believe all Scripture is God-Breathed (2 Timothy 3:16).

            Please don’t state any opinions based on religious traditions, or belief systems, but base everything from the Word of God, which is the foundation of Christian faith. This debate is NOT about anything other than what Bible Scripture reveals.

            So lets get back to the topic. Whether you are the Pope, a pastor, a priest, or minister, I don’t see how any believer in Christ, who is rooted & grounded in His love & grace could possibly misinterpret Romans 1:26-27 to justify homosexuality?

          • Sharla Hulsey

            Yes, the Bible as the inerrant Word of God, the foundation of the Christian faith, is precisely what this debate is about. The notion of *sola scriptura* (Scripture only) is crippled. The only leg it still stands on is what the Bible has interpreted as saying about homosexuality. Darwin struck the first blow with The Origin of Species. Changing understanding of the role of women in church and society continued the dismantling of *sola scriptura*. The reason so many are holding so tightly to Scripture’s supposed condemnation of homosexuality is because if that domino falls, then the authority of Scripture as the only foundation of Christian faith and life has fallen. Where, then, will be the authority?

            (Many here will recognize Phyllis Tickle’s fingerprints all over that, I’m sure.)

            May I humbly submit that the foundation of the Christian faith is not the inerrancy of Scripture (a belief that has only existed for one or, at most, two centuries and is as much a modernist notion as the theory of evolution or the so-called “higher criticism” of scripture). The foundation of the Christian faith is Jesus the Christ. He is revealed in Scripture, yes; but he is also revealed by the Holy Spirit and by our own experience of his continued presence with us this side of Easter.

        • cajaquarius

          Enjoy worshipping King James, Mikey! I can’t figure out why you would choose to worship the Greatness and Wisdom of Human Beings over God, but, what do I know? I was born with a functioning conscience and a sense of humility~ ^_^

          • http://rtiposters.com/ Mike Wood

            Funny coming from someone who doesn’t quote Scripture to support homosexuality, how convenient. I’m not sure what your referring to when you say “worship the Greatness and Wisdom of Human Beings over God” wow, that’s quite a statement since no one on here will comment on any verses relevant to the topic.. not sure what book you follow… you can read Romans 1:26-27 in any Bible.

            You can interpret any way you wish, but it is very clear what it means. Ones with ‘itchy ears’ as one poster quoted here, is certainly not me, I don’t manipulate Scripture for my convenience, or satisfy my desires. Romans speaks for itself. If you don’t like it, take it up with God, not me. I’m only standing up for what is righteous, and what Scripture clearly says.

            I think I’m going to stand down now; the only wisdom here, is man’s wisdom, not the Wisdom of God. Admittedly it is getting frustrating, I don’t like that road, nor I’m sure no one here does.

            For obvious reasons, support for homosexuality in the body of Christ is the extreme minority, and we all know why, your camp simply won’t admit it.

            I believe in the Holy Scriptures as the only authority of God, as most Bible believing Christians do. We can’t ‘cherry pick’ to fit our needs.

            “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” John 1:1

            May God help those who go against His Word!

          • cajaquarius

            As pointed out multiple times, Mikey, your Scripture is translated by human beings, written by human beings, and interpreted by human beings (yes, even your “plain” interpretation is one you allowed another human being to decide for you). You aren’t quoting the Word of God in it’s full context – you are just quoting Human Wisdom. Your interpretation is completely wrong – I don’t have to beat you on that battlefield because I have already pointed out how that is in multiple circumstances. Ergo, you worship human beings and are an idolater.

            You are a Pharisee, mate. The path you walk is easy. It is not the path of Christ. Your itchy ears read the Word out of context because it is easier to progress in an easy lie that feeds your ego than accept a truth that would require you set aside your pride to see it. Check and Mate, my good man. Thank you for playing.

            “May God help those who go against His Word!”

            I am sure He will help you see the error in your ways. In this life or the next. Somewhere deep in your hardened heart lies the truth. You know that you are on the easy path and you fear the hard one – I understand that. I think God does too. Even I fall off the narrow path and am constantly questioning if I fully understand the Truth in Scripture. I will pray you find the courage to walk the narrow path as we attempt to, Mikey. The broad and easy road you walk now is the road to nowhere.

          • http://rtiposters.com/ Mike Wood

            Now my ears are burning! lol… okay lets say I’m completely ignorant and wrong.. can you PLEASE please please give me your interpretation of Romans 1:26-27? I beg you? I sincerely want to hear your view?

            But, there is a problem, if you think the Bible is man’s writings and not God-breathed, then how can anyone establish the authority of God? Otherwise you’re left with man’s wisdom! Your comment towards me, is an oxymoron.

            In all my years of talking with Christians of many denominations, I have never heard any Christ follower, say, that Scripture was “written by human beings.” Those words in itself are extremely offensive, not to me, but according to Scripture, God.

            You accuse me of being a “pharisee, worshiping human beings, and am a idolater” now I just feel sorry for you.
            Everything I’ve quoted is from Scripture, I am confused how that makes me as such?

            “If we say that we have fellowship with Him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and are not practicing the truth;” 1 John 1:6

          • cajaquarius

            “Now my ears are burning! lol… okay lets say I’m completely ignorant and wrong.. can you PLEASE please please give me your interpretation of Romans 1:26-27? I beg you? I sincerely want to hear your view?”

            I would be more than happy to. Romans was written in and around Ephesus at a time when the Cult of Diana was in full swing. We know this cult practiced fertility rituals that involved men dressing in women’s clothing, drinking too much wine, and then getting sodomized by women wielding wooden phalli. That line in Romans is a reference to that very practice and contains a wisdom in it that transcends a mere rule for that time as well. Read in the context of history, it means don’t engage in self serving behavior or worship other deities; don’t pray to get blessings heaped upon yourself.

            Fertility rituals were self serving – you weren’t praying for the fertility of the land, just yourself and your family. It is a contradiction of the way Christ lived and taught. You are called to live for others, not live for yourself. And Rome eventually paid for it’s selfishness and the selfishness of it’s people. It is a lesson that falls on deaf ears today, judging from the economic situation. I fear we too will suffer the due penalty coming around the bend.

            “But, there is a problem, if you think the Bible is man’s writings and not God-breathed, then how can anyone establish the authority of God? Otherwise you’re left with man’s wisdom! Your comment towards me, is an oxymoron.”

            God inspired but still funneled through the imperfect mind and hands of men. We can establish the authority of Scripture by testing it against the Law written on the Heart (our informed conscience – not to be confused with rationalizations which are an aspect of human wisdom). The conscience is not man’s wisdom. If it were then why would Christ say the Kingdom of Heaven was made for “ones such as these” (meaning children)? Children don’t know scripture so how can they be saved, if your view is correct? Your interpretation would call Christ a fool for allowing children near him and a bigger fool for opposing the Pharisees for none knew the Scriptures (or Tanahk) better than they.

            “In all my years of talking with Christians of many denominations, I have never heard any Christ follower, say, that Scripture was “written by human beings.” Those words in itself are extremely offensive, not to me, but according to Scripture, God.”

            The Truth is there and inspired by God, but human beings did, indeed, write the text. To claim infallible understanding is to claim human wisdom as infallible enough to understand God, perfectly. This strikes me as not only unlikely but dangerously idolatrous. An imperfect tree can’t produce perfect fruit. Going by the adult conscience polluted with rationalization is error. Going purely off the Scriptures as written by men is error. You need both together to grow in an understanding of God’s Word. You are incorrect in that you cast out the conscience and bind yourself to the Scriptures without separating wheat from chaff.

            “You accuse me of being a “pharisee, worshiping human beings, and am a idolater” now I just feel sorry for you.
            Everything I’ve quoted is from Scripture, I am confused how that makes me as such?”

            One who has come to rely on the man made interpretations of Scripture and the rules handed down from elders so long he is now blind to the Law written upon the Heart that every child possesses and which we once did as well. I pity you as well, as you have made bitter bread with both the wheat and the chaff of the Bible, claimed it as perfect, and now choke it down because you are too stubborn to see all the evidence that God has revealed to you and all of us that shows the Literal Interpretation of Scripture to be folly. Nevermind the Science of Evolution, the archaeology that shows the Jews were never slaves of the Egyptions, and all these revelations from God; you will find ways to obfuscate, call them falsehoods, and cling to what your human master (eg The Catholic Church, King James, etc) demands you to cling to.

            “‘If we say that we have fellowship with Him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and are not practicing the truth;’ 1 John 1:6″

            A slice of divine wisdom I hope you one day heed. I did come at you with silliness and mirth but you seem genuinely lost so allow me to apologize for the earlier joking. I do worry about the path you are taking but God is infinitely patient so I think your apparent earnestness will eventually pay off and God will bring you back into the light again. I will pray for you.

          • http://rtiposters.com/ Mike Wood

            Hello again,

            We cannot & should never deny the very Word of God. You repeatedly continue to do so, and sadly, I do not understand how or why any believer in Christ could. If you think I am on the “wrong path & genuinely lost,” as you suggest, God as my witness, I don’t understand why you make claims like this, when I simply quote Scripture. If I am on the wrong path, because of my faith in God’s Word, then I’m pleased with that.

            John 1:1
            “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”

            The Word is the definition, explanation, and expression of God; hence, it is God defined, explained, and expressed. The Word is not separate from God. It is not that the Word is the Word and God is God, and that they are thus separate from each other. Rather, the two are one; hence, the next clause says that the Word was God. The Word is God the Father, Son, & Spirit.

            2 Timothy 3:16
            “All Scripture is God-breathed and profitable for teaching, for conviction, for correction, for instruction in righteousness,”

            ‘God-breathed’ indicates that the Scripture, the word of God, is the breathing out of God. God’s speaking is God’s breathing out. Hence, His word is spirit (John 6:63), or breath. Thus, the Scripture is the embodiment of God as the Spirit. The Spirit is therefore the very essence, the substance, of the Scripture, just as phosphorus is the essential substance in matches. We must strike the Spirit of the Scripture with our spirit to catch the divine fire. As the embodiment of God the Spirit, the Scripture (God’s word) is also the embodiment of Christ. Christ is God’s living Word (Rev. 19:13), and the Scripture is God’s written word (Matt. 4:4).

            The fact that you are denying Bible Scripture is ‘God-Breathed’ – the authority of God, in it’s very essence you are denying Christ Himself, which clearly defined by Scripture is the Word.

            Matt. 10:33
            “But whoever will deny Me before men, I also will deny him before My Father who is in the heavens.”

            You still have not commented on Romans 1:26-27, yet continue to throw man’s history at me like it has some credibility, & authority over God’s Word. You repeatedly continue to criticize the King James version of the Bible like it’s the only one which translates homosexuality the way it does. And no, I’m not Catholic, as you also criticize. May I remind you, this discussion is about righteousness, the Word of God, His authority, & what He says, not about what you or I say. I am simply conveying to you what the Word of God clearly states pertaining to homosexuality. Otherwise you are perverting the Gospel of Christ (Galatians 1:7).

            Here’s a few other versions of Romans 1:26-27, if you care to compare. I welcome you to look up all versions.

            NLV
            “26 That is why God abandoned them to their shameful desires. Even the women turned against the natural way to have sex and instead indulged in sex with each other. 27 And the men, instead of having normal sexual relations with women, burned with lust for each other. Men did shameful things with other men, and as a result of this sin, they suffered within themselves the penalty they deserved.”

            NIV
            “26. Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. 27 In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.”

            NASB
            “26 For this reason God gave them over to degrading passions; for their women exchanged the natural function for that which is [a]unnatural, 27 and in the same way also the men abandoned the natural function of the woman and burned in their desire toward one another, men with men committing [b]indecent acts and receiving in [c]their own persons the due penalty of their error.”

            WEB
            “26 For this reason, God gave them up to vile passions. For their women changed the natural function into that which is against nature. 27 Likewise also the men, leaving the natural function of the woman, burned in their lust toward one another, men doing what is inappropriate with men, and receiving in themselves the due penalty of their error.”

            I will;
            2 Timothy 4:2
            “Proclaim the word; be ready in season and out of season; convict, rebuke, exhort with all long-suffering and teaching.”

          • cajaquarius

            “We cannot & should never deny the very Word of God. You repeatedly [...] because of my faith in God’s Word, then I’m pleased with that. ”

            I agree fully that we cannot deny the Word of God for it would lead us to ruin but you are mistaken in saying I deny it. I do not. The differences we have here is that we seem to have a differing understanding of what the Word of God actually is.

            The Word is the Spirit of God – our soul, the Law written upon the Heart. In the Jewish dialect, what we would translate as “Heart” is the word they use for what we would call the brain; the seat of our understanding. Nothing good comes from the heart, but written there is the Word; that would be the soul – that which is of God. To deny that would be folly and make you a slave of the Heart and we see many today in that bind who abide the will of the Heart. Those who rationalize their evils. You seem to believe the Word is the Scripture but these are just manifestations of the Word through the lens of history and our own wisdom. It is error to idolize these written words while denying the true Word (where they all manifest from). The Word is our conscience and our shadow; the truth we cannot deny to ourselves, at the end of the day.

            I fear it is you who are denying the Word, friend, but I will say that you seem genuinely interested in finding it and are not denying it out of Pride and there is always hope for those on the wide path. Idolatry of our elders and our traditions is not an unforgivable sin and I will earnestly pray you find your way.

            “The Word is the definition, explanation, and expression of God; hence, it is [...] says that the Word was God. The Word is God the Father, Son, & Spirit.”

            The Word and the Scripture are not the same thing. Scripture maybe inspired by God but that is not the same as being written by His own hand. Even the purest breath can become filthy and reek of foul stench when blown through a filthy filter (and by comparison to a being like God, what is more filthy than the Flesh and Heart of man?) Again, you partially understand but I would say you don’t fully grasp what the Word is, I feel.

            “‘God-breathed’ indicates that the Scripture, the word of God, is the breathing out of God. God’s speaking is God’s breathing out. Hence, His word is spirit (John 6:63), or breath.”

            God’s breath is also life and life is not infallible or perfect when it resides in shells of mud and dust. Refer back to my analogy to breathing through a dirty filter, above – that is what Scripture is; God breathed Divine Wisdom marred by the imperfections of the men and ages who delivered it to us. This is why historical context *is* vital.

            “Thus, the Scripture is the embodiment of God as the Spirit. The Spirit is therefore the very essence, the substance, of the Scripture, just as phosphorus is the essential substance in matches.”

            I do not deny this. In Scripture is a Perfect Wisdom inspired by God. But to accept it all as written as if it were of God would be to equate us who wrote it (that is men, not us, specifically) to God, This is a dangerous view. It is unwitting heresy at best and a terrible blasphemy at worst.

            “We must strike the Spirit of the Scripture with our spirit to catch the divine fire. As the embodiment of God the Spirit, the Scripture (God’s word) is also the embodiment of Christ. Christ is God’s living Word (Rev. 19:13), and the Scripture is God’s written word (Matt. 4:4).”

            I agree, though I would use an analogy of using our God given Spirit as a sift to determine the real wisdom of God and sift it from the chaff of man that is also in Scripture. Because our Spirit is still hidden and perverted by the flesh (as evidenced by the fact that we are still fallen and abide the logic of the flesh/”Heart” in this world) we cannot yet fully understand or properly sift this. God aids us through revelation (via science, archaeology, history, philosophy, and so on – all are important because all strip away the flesh like layers of an onion, little by little, to reveal the truth beneath).

            “The fact that you are denying Bible Scripture is ‘God-Breathed’ – the authority of God, in it’s very essence you are denying Christ Himself, which clearly defined by Scripture is the Word.”

            You are mistaken. I do no such thing. I simply protest your idolizing the human chaff that is inherent in Scripture as if it were equal to the Wisdom of God. This is error, in my view.

            “You still have not commented on Romans 1:26-27, yet continue to throw [...] you are perverting the Gospel of Christ (Galatians 1:7).”

            Again, you are mistaken but to make it clear; I do not deny the validity of the passage you quote at all, I simply deny it is referencing what you think it is. Such a reading seems arbitrary and violates my conscience as well as my understanding of the context of the writing. Man’s history is the revelation of God to man; all we understand is a revelation of God in our world. To deny the credibility of the things we know and our history is to deny God Himself. You are as a prophet who sees a revelation yet claims he must have just dreamt it or it must just have been your imagination. Like Jonah, you flee from your duty to the truth revealed to you.

            This conversation, as I see it, is about your idolatry of the written words and the denial of revelations from God in order to continue on the wide path and my attempting to offer correction. Whatever you believe you follow, it is not the Word of God but of man. The history and the evidence proves that, as I have explained previously.

            I am not perverting the Gospel, I am defending it from perversion by you, unwitting though it may be. By accepting Scripture as perfect and infallible you idolize human wisdom (a point I originally made at the beginning when we began this conversation). That is what I protest. You would call goats sheep and wheat chaff. I cannot accept that.

            “I will;
            2 Timothy 4:2
            ‘Proclaim the word; be ready in season and out of season; convict, rebuke, exhort with all long-suffering and teaching.’”

            Another good Scripture. I will also do this just as I now do proclaim and attempt to teach you. And if you are not ready to accept what I offer I will pray for you to find the truth and hope that this conversation is read by another who is aided on the right path by our conversation here.

          • http://rtiposters.com/ Mike Wood

            Wow, where do I start, or better yet, where do I stop.

            I am genuinely confused as to why you make accusations against me for being an idolater, when I only use God’s Word to define such an obvious, simple, elementary topic such as homosexuality? You seriously need to re-read your own text here. You continue to attack me, and are making this personal, rather than utilizing Scripture to back your claims, and keeping to the topic.

            I use only Scripture to define my understanding of God’s Word, You continue to make your argument based on opinions, not Scripture. You continue to undermine God’s authority, which is God’s Word; Bible Scripture. But, then again, I understand why you are doing this.

            You said; “The Word is our conscience and our shadow; the truth we cannot deny to ourselves, at the end of the day.”

            Is that a new Bible Scripture? Maybe I missed that one. You are now putting yourself higher than God!

            You maintain your false interpretation of 2 Timothy 3:16
            “All Scripture is God-breathed and profitable for teaching, for conviction, for correction, for instruction in righteousness,”

            Which part of “All Scripture is God-breathed” do you not understand?

            “God-breathed” indicates that the Scripture, the word of God, is the breathing out of God. God’s speaking is God’s breathing out. Hence,
            His Word is spirit John 6:63 “It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing; the words which I have spoken to you are spirit and are life.”

            Yet you claim, “The Word is our conscience and our shadow; …” But God says; “the flesh profits nothing.” How on earth could you ever think, the Word is our conscience? Our conscience is not God, is not part of God, is not higher than God. Man’s conscience corresponds with the God-created human nature and enables man to know what God justifies and what He condemns.

            After man’s fall and his being sent out of the garden of Eden (Gen. 3:23), God in His dispensation wanted man to be responsible to his own conscience. But man failed to live and walk according to his conscience and fell further into wickedness (Gen. 6:5). After the judgment of the flood, God ordained that man should be under human government (Gen. 9:6). Man failed in this also. Then, before fulfilling His promise to Abraham concerning the blessing of the nations in his seed, Christ (Gen. 12:3; Gal. 3:8), God put man under the test of the law (Rom. 3:20; 5:20). Man failed this test utterly. All these failures indicate that man has fallen from God to his conscience, from his conscience to human government, and from human government to lawlessness; that is, man has fallen to the uttermost.

            Romans 3:23 “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,”
            God’s glory is God expressed. Whenever God is expressed, His glory is seen. Man was made by God in His image that man might express Him for His glory. But man has sinned and has contradicted the holiness and righteousness of God. Instead of expressing God, man expresses sin and his sinful self. Hence, man falls short of God’s glory.

            As the embodiment of God the Spirit, the Scripture (God’s word) is also the embodiment of Christ. Christ is God’s living Word (Rev. 19:13), and the Scripture is God’s written word (Matt. 4:4).

            You know, it’s the same old tune, you continue to disregard Bible Scripture as the authority of God, which ‘All Scripture is God-breathed.’ But sadly, this is understandable, because you are using this very tactic to justify homosexuality, when you know full well, what Romans 1:26-27 says!

            In fact Romans 1:26,27 is so clear, so obvious, that homosexuality is wrong, that you would have to disregard Bible Scripture as the authority of God being ‘God-breathed’ to justify your views and practices.

            Romans 1:28 continues; “And even as they did not approve of holding God in their full knowledge, God gave them up to a disapproved mind, to do the things which are not fitting,”

          • cajaquarius

            “I am genuinely confused as to why you make accusations against me for being an idolater, when I only use God’s Word to define such an obvious, simple, elementary topic such as homosexuality? You seriously need to re-read your own text here. You continue to attack me, and are making this personal, rather than utilizing Scripture to back your claims, and keeping to the topic.”

            I apologize if you read these as attacks on you, for they are not. I am sorry if they came across that way. When I call you an idolater, I am not meaning to attack you, only your sin. You are not using Scripture in it’s full context; I am staying on the topic. You are arguing using human wisdom and you are calling that human wisdom “the Word of God” and “Scripture”. I take offense to this and call it blasphemy.

            “I use only Scripture to define my understanding of God’s Word, You continue to make your argument based on opinions, not Scripture. You continue to undermine God’s authority, which is God’s Word; Bible Scripture. But, then again, I understand why you are doing this.”

            You use human wisdom to define your understanding of God’s Word. I have already explained the historical context of the Scripture you quoted and properly rebuffed your misrepresentation of Romans twice and you have yet to argue or attempt to address what I have said.

            “Is that a new Bible Scripture? Maybe I missed that one. You are now putting yourself higher than God!”

            If your simply not knowing the Scripture has been the problem here then I can certainly help you by giving you the Scriptures you need. I can also list the Scripture to back my points, if it will help you.

            1 John 2:27, Proverbs 20:27, Romans 8:16, Proverbs 4:23, 1 John 3:18-21, Psalms 16:7, Romans 2:15, Mark 2:8 (in the context of the greater passage), and Romans 8:14 (in the context of the others mentioned).

            “Yet you claim, “The Word is our conscience and our shadow; …” But God says; ‘the flesh profits nothing.’”

            The conscience is not of our Flesh. That is made clear in pretty explicitly. Flesh does profit nothing but the Spirit of God is not the flesh.

            “How on earth could you ever think, the Word is our conscience? Our conscience is not God, is not part of God, is not higher than God.”

            See aforementioned Scriptures. We are made good and are called to be “as children” by Christ himself [Mark 10:13-6 and Matthew 18:10]. If the Word were not inherent to us in some way and we were truly in need of a hard coded set of rules, why would Christ welcome children to Him? Again, read this in the context of what is being said and the time it was written; rabbis never allowed children to approach so openly because the Law (that thing you pay absolute homage to) was seen as the only means by which one comes to know Christ. But we have always known God. The conscience isn’t greater than God but it is of Him, as I have proven.

            “Man’s conscience corresponds with the God-created human nature and enables man to know what God justifies and what He condemns.”

            This statement makes no sense in your context. How can something of the flesh help us to justify anything from God? It is either of God or it isn’t and that which is profane cannot understand God or do His will [Romans 8:7-8].

            “After man’s fall and his being sent out of the garden of Eden (Gen. 3:23), God in His dispensation wanted man to be responsible to his own conscience. But man failed to live and walk according to his conscience and fell further into wickedness (Gen. 6:5). ”

            This supports my whole point that the conscience is good and of God. When we rationalize or fall away from it, we become wicked and worldly.

            “After the judgment of the flood, God ordained that man should be under human government (Gen. 9:6). Man failed in this also.”

            This is precisely why your trusting of Scripture without regard to archaeology, history, or conscience is so dangerous. You put your faith in human beings who have proven time and time again they cannot be trusted to carry out God’s edicts.

            “All these failures indicate that man has fallen from God to his conscience, from his conscience to human government, and from human government to lawlessness; that is, man has fallen to the uttermost.”

            This is completely inaccurate. Before the law and before government, all man had was his conscience breathed into him by God. We didn’t fall to our conscience, we fell away from it. It never went away, though, and still resides there though we may ignore it, rationalize evil, and fall away from it. It is present in every young child – hence why Christ favored them and told people to be like them, You are (and continue) to mistake the Spirit of God for the Flesh of Man. Your recounting of the Old Testament Mythos demonstrates this, as I now have pointed out.

            “God’s glory is God expressed. Whenever God is expressed, His glory is seen. Man was made by God in His image that man might express Him for His glory. But man has sinned and has contradicted the holiness and righteousness of God. Instead of expressing God, man expresses sin and his sinful self. Hence, man falls short of God’s glory.”

            Any who do truly good things carry the Spirit of God because they abide by their conscience. Just like a dead tree cannot produce fruit, so too a vessel of flesh that doesn’t abide in the Spirit cannot produce good. I don’t disagree with this.

            “As the embodiment of God the Spirit, the Scripture (God’s word) is also the embodiment of Christ. Christ is God’s living Word (Rev. 19:13), and the Scripture is God’s written word (Matt. 4:4).”

            And God’s Word was handed down by human beings, translated and written out by human beings, all of which have proven by your own admission that they are not trustworthy enough to maintain holiness or even the most basic edicts of God. God reveals the truth to us in our history and our growing understanding of our world; that is why we still debate Scripture to this day. You may trust human beings with your soul but I won’t.

            “You know, it’s the same old tune, you continue to disregard Bible Scripture as the authority of God, which ‘All Scripture is God-breathed.’”

            I don’t, I merely think it is pragmatic to remember who translated and gave us these words (other human beings). You can choose to be blind to evidence if you like and it is easier to do that, but I won’t stand idly by and not contradict you where I see need for contradiction.

            “But sadly, this is understandable, because you are using this very tactic to justify homosexuality, when you know full well, what Romans 1:26-27 says!’”

            I do know what it says. I have explained it to you twice now. You are the one who keeps perverting the Scripture – I am merely defending it.

            “In fact Romans 1:26,27 is so clear, so obvious, that homosexuality is wrong, that you would have to disregard Bible Scripture as the authority of God being ‘God-breathed’ to justify your views and practices.”

            It is so clear that Romans 1:26-27 is discussing homosexuality in regards to the Cult of Diana and making a greater point about the fertility rituals and general selfishness of Roman citizens of the time that you would have to be insisting on the wide and easy road in following Christ to deny that. How much have you actually studied Roman culture of the age this was written?

            This is the third time I have rebutted your insistence on a completely incorrect interpretation of Romans. Unless you can account for the rebuttals I have already leveled then I am afraid we are done discussing Romans.

            If you want to travel the easiest path then that is well and good, but it is not the right path you are walking on. I hope you realize that someday.

          • http://rtiposters.com/ Mike Wood

            Most of your statements are oxymoron’s. You continuously defend your/or whomever homosexual position; justifying your views based on your accusations against me that I am “misinterpreting & blaspheming” the Word of God. Yet you blatantly deny Scripture.

            It’s impossible to misinterpret Romans 1:26,27 & others, your attempt is completely futile, & worthless, and that is why you ignore Scripture as the authority, and foundation to your argument. Your argument is completely contrary to Bible Scripture.

            THIS;

            NLV
            “26 That is why God abandoned them to their shameful desires. Even the women turned against the natural way to have sex and instead indulged in sex with each other. 27 And the men, instead of having normal sexual relations with women, burned with lust for each other. Men did shameful things with other men, and as a result of this sin, they suffered within themselves the penalty they deserved.”

            IS NOT my opinion! Don’t you understand that?

            These are NOT my interpretations!

            Leviticus 20:13
            If a man lies with a male as with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination; they shall surely be put to death; their blood is upon them.

            Leviticus 18:22
            You shall not lie with a male as with a woman; it is an abomination.

            1 Corinthians 6:9
            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,

            Look at the verses, it’s very simple, it’s God speaking, not me.

    • melissia

      For a gay man or lesbian woman to force him/herself to have straight sex would be go to against nature. To go against what God had made them to be.

      That sort of pain is not what Jesus wants for us.


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