"No single translation method can possibly convey with complete accuracy the biblical text. An Italian proverb sums it up well: Traduttore traditore, "The translator is a traitor." There is, indeed, always something lost in translation. So we need both formal and functional equivalence biblical translations. Formal equivalence translations highlight what the text literally said. Functional equivalent translations highlight how that text was originally heard. Only when we employ these together can we begin to approximate Scripture's deepest and broadest meaning."
Rev Bruce Lowe is a 96 yo retired, straight Baptist minister who has been an advocate for all non-heterosexuals since a friend of his for fifty years shared that "My brother hates God because God made him gay, and he knows he is going to hell, and I do, too, for that is what the Bible says."
He says, "At that time I knew almost nothing about gay people or homosexuality. I did have some suppositions - quite negative - and had never thought I needed to study the subject. But her words made me want to know as much as I could learn about it."
Bruce has since learned very much about it and this is his latest article on the subject, complete with references.
As a straight woman, she did extensive research and combined it with her own personal experience of knowing a lesbian Christian. Rev. James gives a compassionate and loving response.
The Parable of the Weeds
Jesus told them another parable: "The kingdom of heaven is like a man who sowed good seed in his field. But while everyone was sleeping, his enemy came and sowed weeds among the wheat, and went away. When the wheat sprouted and formed heads, then the weeds also appeared.
The owner's servants came to him and said, 'Sir, didn't you sow good seed in your field? Where then did the weeds come from?'
'An enemy did this,' he replied.
The servants asked him, 'Do you want us to go and pull them up?'
'No,' he answered, 'because while you are pulling the weeds, you may root up the wheat with them. Let both grow together until the harvest. At that time I will tell the harvesters: First collect the weeds and tie them in bundles to be burned; then gather the wheat and bring it into my barn.' "
Matt 13:24 - 30
My friends, the lesson to be learned from this parable is that even if you think we (gays and lesbians) are the weeds, Jesus said NOT to uproot us with the wheat! That will be His job when the time comes. God has called us to plant, not to pluck up.
Click here for an inspirational, humour-filled video sermon by my friend Rev Deana Dudley of MCC Toronto about "Pluckers and Planters"
We may have different beliefs than you, but it is not your job to uproot us. To say that you love the sinner but hate the sin is not loving us. It is not your job to deal with what you perceive as our sin. Please, just love us for who we are, people who want to be loved, and to feel like we belong.
Nobody in their right mind would "choose" to be gay - to be humiliated, rejected by friends and family, have their jobs in jeopardy, fear being beaten up or even murdered. No, none of us "chose" to be gay. We are who we are. We are loving people who love the Lord with all our hearts. Please don't shun us from your churches and your homes.
Please just love us and respect us, and accept us for who we are because we are God's children, and because we believe, based on Scripture, that God loves and accepts us just as He created us.
Our beliefs, in no way contradict our beloved God-inspired Scriptures. Our faith would have no meaning if we needed to twist it to suit our needs, but just as Baptists have a different view of Baptism than Salvationists, and Catholics have a different view of the Virgin Mary than Pentecostals do, so we understand Scripture in the light of the Original writings which we believe to be the ACCURATE interpretation regarding the issue of homosexuality. This website has over 5,000 pages of Resources to support our position. Please, take the time to look into it.
Thank you and God bless you!
Blowing another person's light out won't make yours shine brighter. ~ Bob Gass
Let love be your only debt! If you love others, you have done all that the Law demands. In the Law there are many commands, such as, "Be faithful in marriage. Do not murder. Do not steal. Do not want what belongs to others." But all of these are summed up in the command that says," Love others as much as you love yourself." No one who loves others will harm them. So love is all that the Law demands. Rom 13:8-10
A response from Marsha Stevens to those who would tell us that we are wrong:
"I'm glad you did as Jesus instructed us to do and came to me directly. I think that you and I simply disagree on one doctrine. I don't mind sharing my understanding of that with you, but I don't think it's likely that you and I are going to agree on this one issue. That's too bad, because I'll bet that there is a whole lot we DO agree on.
Try reading Acts 10. When God came to Peter on the rooftop with a vision to eat unclean food, Peter had Scripture to stand on when he said No. (Actually he said, "No, Lord." Now there's an oxymoron for you!) He also had Scripture to stand on to decline the Holy Spirit's vision for him, which was to preach to the Gentiles.
He wasn't supposed to eat those foods, he wasn't supposed to go into the home of a Gentile. The Bible said so. But God did not debate the Scriptures with Peter . . . God said, "What I have called clean, you may not call unclean." It wasn't until the Holy Spirit fell on the group and they began to have the gifts of the Spirit, that the apostles finally said, "I guess we have to baptize them and let them in."
That's where I aspire to be. Letting the Holy Spirit fall on me, use me, work through me. Hopefully letting my light so shine that others will see it and glorify God who is at work in me.
I hope this gives you some kind of answer for the hope that's within me. I think that you and I will simply have to agree that we disagree in this one area. In the meantime, I really do appreciate your concerned spirit and your passionate heart. Let's keep one another in prayer."
Thank you for coming to this page. I commend you for investigating further, and I believe that you have come here with an open mind. I pray that these articles may inspire in you, a deeper desire to inquire into the truth of God's Holy Word.
We are commanded by God to love UNCONDITIONALLY, one God and our fellow man/woman. We (gays) often hear from people within the church that they love us, but not our sin. That clears their minds sufficiently to believe that they are doing as God commanded, but when we are made to feel unwelcome in your churches, when we are treated with disdain, that is not unconditional love. That is VERY conditional love!
I must emphasize here that I believe with all my heart that the Bible is God's Holy, Divinely-inspired, inerrant Word. It is the foundation of our faith and we must strive to understand it in its fullest, so that we may live the life that God would have us live, to bring honor and glory to God!
There was a time when I thought it was blasphemous to question the "truths" of the Church, but II Tim 3:16 tells us that
"All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, reproof and instruction in righteousness."
This tells me that God WANTS us to examine the Scriptures with an open mind, a mind that will question, a mind that will seek the answers of what it really means to live a holy life. We have an OBLIGATION to challenge what we have been taught when it doesn't fit with other parts of Scripture. Well prejudice against anyone is contrary to Christ's example of inclusiveness, acceptance and love for all, so to me, there is no corroberation for an attitude of prejudice.
I'm not suggesting for a minute that Jesus was tolerant of sin. He was not! I am not! But when you investigate further, you will find that homosexuality is not about sin. Homosexuality is merely an orientation, and orientation carries no implication of morality or immorality. It is simply the direction in which a person's tendencies lie. There is no action associated with orientation, whereas morality is a matter of actions or thoughts.
It is important to make this distinction, since the Bible only addresses immoral behaviour, not sexual orientation. In each case where homosexuality is mentioned, in reality, correct interpretation of Scripture is not referring to homosexual orientation, but to immoral same-sex acts - in most cases, perpetrated by heterosexuals! If you can grasp this vital difference, please read these articles with an open heart, and may God richly bless you for stepping out in faith, and in the cause of love.
I know that it's a radical concept to even consider that what we have been taught so strictly, for so long, by people we respect, could be wrong, but it has happened before, and it will probably happen again.
Thank God we have the example of the apostles Peter and Paul, clarifying the wrong teachings of the early Church. Yes, wrong teachings have been around since the beginning. Thank God that He gave Martin Luther the courage to challenge the Roman Catholic Church's teachings about selling indulgances (i.e. buying our own salvation). Be thankful that God has given YOU the desire to question the validity of some of the teachings.
There are explanations for each scripture verse which SEEMS to condemn homosexuals. You will find that in actual fact, they do NOT!
See Understanding Scripture Regarding Homosexuality.
Please also see Hope Remains - for articles on Adam & Eve / Adam & Steve, Sodom & Gomorrah, Leviticus 18:22 & 20:13, Same-sex Marriage, Romans 1, I Corinthians & I Timothy.
The Christians at Hope Remains are not "liberal" theologians. They do not dismiss scripture as irrelevant to this day and age. They believe the Bible, in its original form, was the inerrant word of God. They endeavor to move beyond the mistranslations that exist in English translations of that word, using the extant Hebrew and Greek texts.
When translating from Hebrew and Greek to English, they tend to bypass religious resources, which have been known to alter meanings for doctrinal reasons (not just on this topic). They prefer to rely primarily on secular language sources, whose only "agenda" is proper understanding of the language.
"It is inevitable that stumbling blocks should come, but woe to him through whom they come! It would be better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck and he were thrown into the sea, than that he should cause one of these little ones to stumble." Luke 17: 1-2
Anyone who makes a gay person feel less than a straight person, any church which does not accept us wholly and without reservation, is a stumbling block in our path. Thank you for reading the things on this website and desiring not to be a stumbling block. God will surely reward you for sincerely wanting to know how you can love God's gay children unreservedly.
The apostle Paul said it this way:
"If I speak in the tongues of mortals and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing." 1 Cor 13:1-2
And Jesus said,
"All people will know that you are my disciples if you love one another." John 13:35.
Love is not just words that you love us but hate our sin. Love is action. Please truly love your gay children, brothers, sisters, friends, parents, neighbours (and those who are sitting secretly in the pews of your churches) with Christ's love by reading the following articles.
Once again, thank you for taking the time to research this subject beyond the traditional beliefs, and may God richly bless you for reaching out to us this way, in TRUE love!
You may wish to write to is Mary Lou Wallner, a "straight" Christ-follower, and totally GLBT supportive. Mary Lou says,
"My lesbian Christian daughter committed suicide 10 years ago.
After being totally NON-accepting of her, because at that time I was a fundamentalist, I went on a journey after her death, of reading everything I could get my hands on about homosexuality, praying and talking with people on both sides of the issue. The result has been a 180 degree transformation of our beliefs.
We now go to a wonderful church in North Little Rock, AR, and my husband and I are just 2 out of 4 people who are heterosexual. Everyone else is gay.
I've counseled many GLBT folks over the past 6 years. I am also a psychiatric RN and work at a private psychiatric hospital. I do a lot of speaking all over the country.
See my website, TEACH Ministries which we started in 2002.
TEACH is an acronym for To Educate About the Consequences of Homophobia."
Mary Lou's book, The Slow Miracle of Transformation is available from the Christian Gays Store. Click here to read about it.
"In August of 1984, my youngest brother, who had been my childhood playmate, died with AIDS. Just two weeks earlier, while visiting him in the hospital, he told my husband and I his lifelong secret. He was gay and had always been gay.
I have wished many times since that brief encounter with the person he really was that we could have been granted more time so that he could help me understand this complex reality. But for some reason (possibly my own pious and judgmental attitude that kept him from sharing this secret with me), our time of unmasked openness with each other was limited to a few short hours. . . . . . . "
A full 225 page book complete with Bibliography which you can download from this website to print up and read. Many thanks to Dr. Pearson for allowing us to share this book with you at no charge.
Chapters include: The Seeming Dilemma, Sodom Revisited, Levital Law and Grace, Christian Ethics and the Homosexual. Appendixes include: Examples of Intersex Categories, Question Assignments, Fast Facts for Distribution Purposes.
I encourage you to download this book and spend time investigating it.
After the suicide of her daughter in Feb. 1997, Mary Lou Wallner found
herself faced with a spiritual journey to try to comprehend the events of
their stormy mother-daughter relationship and the implications of her
refusal to accept Anna's homosexuality.
And God Loves Each One (booklet by Ann Thompson Cook) - is more than just a book; it's a catalyst for a new dialogue about sexual orientation in churches and communities. It offers a path for people who wonder about sexual orientation, who wonder about the religious view that it's wrong to be gay. It's about lighting a spark of learning in your church and community. It's about growing and bringing gay and straight people together - united by their profound faith that God indeed loves each one. It addresses questions of sexuality within the context of faith. It's a booklet that people of any denomination can use to explore sexual orientation and God's love.
Ann Thompson Cook is a Methodist who has been educating people about sexuality, reproductive health, and gender for 25 years. She has written extensively, and her publications include Made in God's Image and PFLAG's Respect All Youth series. She and her husband of 35 years have two adult sons.
If you would like to discuss these topics, glbtchristians is a Yahoo Group created by Pastor John in 2004 to discuss the Bible and homosexuality. It has been specifically created for those on all sides of the issue.
1. For GLBT Christians (i.e. gay, lesbian, bi and transgendered)
2. For Anti GLBT Christians
3. For those who are curious, Christian or not.
Debates and discussions can be frank and at times heated but, hopefully, always sincere. Flaming is discouraged, however members are encouraged to speak their minds openly and honestly.
This list is not for those with thin skin! If you are a GLBT Christian and want to find a nice supportive group to join, contact Pastor John privately, we have a great one for you elsewhere!
If you hold a sincere position on this subject, or are simply curious about what the Bible really teaches, you are welcome in this group regardless of your take on the subject.
The list owner is a GLBT positive Christian minister who believes the Light of the Word overpowers the Darkness of prejudice every time.
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