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Guest Editorial: Is homosexuality biblical?

The Oklahoman reported in an article from May 21 that the Presbyterian Church USA (PCUSA) ratified a measure allowing the ordination of gay and lesbian ministers. According to the article, this is a debate that has “raged within the Presbyterian Church (PCUSA) for more than three decades.” And though this recent decision finally gave regional church bodies the ability to decide for themselves, some PCUSA Churches have been affirming non-traditional sexual preferences for years. When I read the article, I was deeply saddened that the PCUSA has ignored or perhaps abandoned the Bible altogether on this issue. However, some have tried to validate their position with the Bible, including a Presbyterian (PCUSA) Church in Stillwater where I pastor. The following is part 1 of a blog I wrote in response to statements made by a Presbyterian pastor in local newspapers.

“A dog barks when his master is attacked. I would be a coward if I saw that God’s truth is attacked and yet would remain silent.” John Calvin

In the fall of 2009, the First Presbyterian Church in Stillwater held several Sunday evening discussions titled: “Loving Our Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transsexual Neighbor (GLBT).” That sounds loving and caring doesn’t it? Most people know that God is love, and we should love God and our neighbor as commanded in the Bible, (Matt. 22:34-40), and because it is commanded in God’s Word, I want to love my neighbors, whoever they are. Sincerely, I affirm the need to love and respect all people, because all people are created in the image of God and have intrinsic value. I want to love my GLBT neighbor just as much as I want to love my heterosexual neighbor. But while I agree with what the discussion title is saying, I cannot go along with and remain silent about what the discussion title means. Why? Because it is absolutely contradictory to what the Bible means, and is therefore an attack on “God’s truth” and therefore unloving to others. Even if it is not received as love, my intent is to love others by telling them the biblical truth.

Gordon Edwards, pastor of First Presbyterian, says that most people incorrectly interpret the Bible when they say that non-heterosexual orientation is sinful. He says, “The condemnation in the Scriptures is of unnatural, abusive, violent, perverted sexual activity—both heterosexual and homosexual.” (From The Daily O’Collegian; Mon., Sept. 14, 2009; p. 1) Edwards further comments, “Loving, committed same gender relationships are few within the Scripture; I only recall David and Jonathan, Ruth and Naomi, and Martha and Mary. Each person is called to live responsibly as a creation of God within himself/herself, in relationships with others and the Creator.” From The Stillwater NewsPress; Sept. 11, 2009 (I assert that Gay, Lesbian, Bi-sexual and Transsexual relationships are all biblically sinful and therefore morally wrong based on the fact that gay and lesbian relationships are biblically prohibited. It stands to reason that if God meant exclusively for a man to love a woman and a woman to love a man as husband and wife, then it is also true that bi-sexual and transsexual relationships are also sinful.)

Is this true? Are loving, committed GLBT relationships biblically defensible and therefore virtuous? As respectfully as I can in love, but also to defend the truth, Edwards’ statements and assertions are just wrong. To begin with, there is no credible evidence that any of the three pairs he mentions were in anything other than a healthy heterosexual relationship. Of course these people loved each other, but not the way David loved Bathsheba or the way Ruth loved Boaz. There is no evidence that any of these pairs were sexually involved, whereas all over the Bible, it is clear that David, for example, “lay with” Bathsheba, or Adam “had relations with his wife,” showing that there was a relationship beyond mutual respect and affection. Consequently, if Ruth had a sexual relationship with her mother-in-law, Naomi, then would it not have been unnatural for her to be married to Naomi’s son and then to be married to Boaz? After all, what makes a relationship “unnatural, abusive, violent or perverted,” if it isn’t going from a husband, to your mother-in-law and then to your eventual husband, who is a relative of your deceased husband and mother-in-law? That appears obviously unnatural to me. And if we follow Edwards’ line of thinking, are we also going to say that Jesus was a homosexual? After all, John was referred to as the one Jesus loved and John also lay on Jesus’ bosom. A same-gender and intimate relationship does not necessarily mean that a person is something other than heterosexual.

So aside from the fact that there are no descriptions of approved GLBT relationships in the Bible, neither is there a single verse that prescribes GLBT relationships as morally right and acceptable. In other words, if we laid the prohibitions aside that most people point to as a defense against GLBT relationships, we still run into the fact there is no favorable prescription of such behavior. Where is the verse that says: “For this reason a man shall leave his father and his mother, and be joined to his man-wife; and they shall become one flesh.” (Gen. 2:24) Answer: It is not there. Jesus and Paul both quote this verse to talk about marriage and biblical relationship, and it is always in the context of heterosexual, a man is married to a woman, covenant relationship. It seems pretty significant, does it not, that if the Bible was going to affirm a certain sexual lifestyle preference as noble and desirable and good that it would have affirmed it outright? And it absolutely does not. Marriage is to be between a man and a woman from Bible beginning to Bible end.

In addition to the Bible giving no examples or statements affirming GLBT relationships, the Bible gives some very clear prohibitions against such behavior. I am even willing to leave the story of Sodom and Gomorrah out of the argument, knowing that proponents of GLBT relationships attempt to argue that their sexual preference in not a sin based on this biblical account because the sin of those in Sodom and Gomorrah was their lack of collective hospitality to the messengers who visited Lot. But in the New Testament, there are some very clear condemnations of GLBT behavior.

Next week: Part 2.

Brent Prentice is senior pastor of Stillwater, Eagle Heights.

Brent Prentice

Author: Brent Prentice

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  • I appreciated your article on homosexuality in the Messenger this week and look forward to the one next week.
    In your third paragraph you state “all people are created in the image of God”…..
    I do not find that in the Bible.
    I do find that Adam and Eve were created in the image of God. (Gen. 1:26-27)
    I also find that Adam’s sons were created in HIS image. (Gen. 5:3)
    Since we are all the sons of Adam, are we not then in Adam’s image?
    Was not the image of God in Adam marred by his fall? Are we not all included in the fall?
    I believe that Rom. 5:18-19 indicates that one is not in the image of God until he is born again.
    Just something to mentally chew on…and respond to if you wish.
    God bless you.

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    • Tammy

      I was enlightened by your article on homosexuality. I hope others were also. I have been deeply saddened by how casual homosexuality has become. I live in a little town outside Poteau, OK. I wanted to adopt a seven year old girl who has been in the foster care system. The little girl was placed with a lesbian couple. My husband and I were not even considered for this little girl. Apparently it doesn’t matter that we have helped with her care…..it appears her fate was decided before the parental rights were terminated. This little girl told me that her Mom was not going to be her Mom anymore. She asked me to be her Mom. I called the DHS office the next day to inquire about getting her. I was told arrangements had already been made. Later, I found out this couple and little girl were attending a local church. I can only imagine how confused this little girl must be. What kind of message are we sending to our children? I almost feel like it is a case of reverse discrimination.

  • Tess

    Your article is the second time I’ve seen the statement “…the sin of those in Sodom and Gomorrah was their lack of collective hospitality to the messengers who visited Lot”, I was confused and read those chapters in Genesis that talked about the situation and I have yet to see that statement supported in any way in the recounting of the event.

    What I read is Lot trying to indirectly tell the visitors that they should not be in the square at night (Gen 19:1-3) Next is that before the visitors and Lot could finish dinner and retire for the evening, ALL the men from EVERY PART of the city & EVERY AGE surrounded Lot’s house (Gen 19:4) These men then asked Lot to send the visitors out so they could have sex with them (Gen 19:5) Lot again attempts to protect his visitors and even offers his virgin daughters to the men and yet they become angry and tell him “we’ll treat you worse than we’ll treat your visitors” (Gen 19:6-8) The men follow that up with trying to break down Lot’s door with Lot pinned against it – so they can get at the visitors (Gen 19:9). The visitor struck every man blind so they could not find the door. The use of ‘collective hospitality’ to describe this visual is a gross glossing over of the intent and actions of the men in Sodom and Gomorrah.

    We need to remember the visitors were sent by the Lord to destroy the cities because the sins were so grievous and the outcry was great – Gen 18:10-21. In Gen 18, the Lord was going to Sodom and Gomorrah to confirm if the outcry was true. The Lord stayed behind with Abraham allowing him time to plead for the cities. After the visitors are “greeted” by the men in their “hospitable manner” the visitors tell Lot, we are going to destroy this place because of the outcry to the Lord. (Gen 19:13). Twice the outcry is given as the reason for destroying the cities – not the lack of hospitality or the type of hospitality.. it was the grievous sin.

    Brent – am I missing the “collective hospitality” point? The definition does not reflect the story told. It would be interesting to know who penned that phrase “collective hospitality”.

    • Tony

      Tess,
      I would encourage you to look at Ezekiel 16:48-50 for more dialogue on the sin of Sodom and Gomorrah.

      Also, I believe the idea behind the lack of hospitality is that the strangers (angels) were in the house of Lot, and the people came to gang rape them. A definite sign of inhospitality. Also, much of Jewish tradition credits the lack of hospitality to the sin of Sodom. I’m sure you can Google some of the key words and you’ll find lots of references. Hope that helps!

    • Gary Capshaw

      That’s found in Ezekiel 16: 49-50

      The important thing to remember is that all those collective sins listed there are are a RESULT of the deeper sins of rebellion, unbelief and an unwillingess to repent. God did not destroy Sodom and Gomorrah because of what they were doing, but because of their unwillingness to turn from it.

      The lesson to be drawn from that story (and other similar ones) isn’t that God punishes nations and people because of their actions, but because they refuse to quit what they’re doing and turn back to Him. Salvation is always offered first, before chastisement begins, and it is that refusal to accept it which leads to judgment. Moreover, we are told in Matthew, Luke and II Peter, even by Jesus himself, that it will be far worse for other places which reject the Gospel of Jesus Christ when the Lord returns. Once again, the implication is that they refused to be saved and will suffer accordingly, just as did Sodom and Gomorrah.

  • Dear Brent Prentice;

    Thank you for your comments about the Bible and homosexuality. Your arguments against homosexual behavior and lifestyle and your defense of the Word are commendable and well stated. While I agree wholeheartedly, I want to write and tell you that I have come to the conclusion we need a different formulation of our message about homosexuality. Our present response to the disorder of homosexuality seems to be to merely state that homosexuality is wrong. While that is Biblically true as to behavior, to the world it looks like we are wagging our fingers and telling everyone, in no uncertain terms, that homosexuals are not acceptable to God. Furthermore, despite our protestations that we “hate the sin but love the sinner”, the message we are sending to homosexuals is that we will not welcome homosexuals into our midst. In fact, just this last Sunday one of my Sunday School members asked me if I knew the name of the person who told the lesbian couple who recently visited our church that they were not welcome at our church. She knew of this couple through friends and one was deeply hurt and is not attending any church while the other is attending a church that is not quite so hostile.

    I tell you this story because it sums up how I believe we are coming to be seen by the world. I believe the society/culture in which we find ourselves sees the Evangelical Church (the part of the church that holds to inerrancy of scripture and sola scriptura) as simply people who are judgmental and who hurt otherwise decent people who happen to be homosexual, Consequently, the world does not see us as loving because no matter how kindly and gently we say that God condemns homosexual behavior (and we use some pretty powerful words like “abomination” which, to your credit, you avoided), the world hears our words, and sees us, the people who say them, as harsh, exclusive, and hurtful. We are not seen as a loving people no matter how we try to parse it.

    This is happening, I believe, because the world is listening to homosexuals. As homosexuals (I include in this term gay, lesbian, transgendered, and transsexual persons) speak of their experience in finding out the truth of themselves, the world sees an honesty of being that exposes a fundamental and unalterable truth of self which demands acceptance and respect. So much so that the world has come to see the Evangelical Church as harsh, cruel, and hurtful in its comments about homosexuals whom the world now sees as a separate category of human experience and essential makeup, not choice. The world even has a word for this hostile attitude: “homophobia”. A silly word, to be sure, but it is a word the world uses frequently to condemn the Evangelical Church. Sadly, the world now sees itself as morally good and just in upholding the dignity of homosexuals and it views the Evangelical Church as demeaning and harshly judgmental.

    All this has happened because the world has changed. Over the past 30 or 40 years we have experienced a tectonic shift in the underlying philosophical and moral basis of individual dignity and shared community. Call it post-modernism, existentialism, political correctness, the madness of the 60’s, or just plain sin; it doesn’t matter: the world has changed and we need to acknowledge this shift and what it means to present the gospel to a world that is no longer culturally Christian. With that said, please note I am not saying we have to agree, accommodate (like our brothers and sisters in the Presbyterian Church), or even embrace the change; we only have to acknowledge it. However, we must sadly recognize a profound, and to our ears shocking, aspect of this change: an argument based on the Word of God is only persuasive to those who accept God and His Word; it is no longer, in a general sense, persuasive to the world at large. All you have to do is look at Western Europe and Canada to see what all of this will mean for Christians in the future.

    Since this is a response and I am constrained by time and space, let me briefly present what I have come to see about homosexual behavior. While homosexuality can be a choice of lust, it seems to me that, in general, homosexuality is a profoundly compulsive sexual attraction to others of the same sex that hovers at the edge of existential being. If you listen carefully to what homosexuals say about their experience (these are the ones driving the cultural shift in attitudes toward homosexuals – the people behind the Human Rights Watch, Lambda Legal, PFLAG, GLSEN, and the like), they will tell you they feel as if they were “born this way”. If you listen even more closely, you will hear that their attraction to members of the same sex is part of who they are as people. It is their way of informing us that they do not move toward homosexual behavior because they choose to; they are telling us they are homosexual because it is the only way they feel and exhibit sensuality and love.

    What homosexuals do not tell you, but only hint at, is the struggle they have with their homosexuality. For example, if you read their descriptions of what they call the “coming out” process, you will learn they struggle between an unspoken and probably unacknowledged awareness of the righteousness of God’s creation (i.e. something is disordered within them) and the unwanted and unforgiving demands of their compulsive sensuality toward those of the same sex. Right now their argument is that their struggle for self-acceptance and the guilt they feel is merely the burden of society’s wrong-headed view of who they are (which, I believe, is what propels them to be so vocal). What they fail to see is that this struggle is with God and his natural and spiritual goodness and offers a way to see into the true nature of sin and what God has offered through Jesus in the way of wholeness. This is the fertile ground for the gospel rightly presented and lived by those who have come to be like Jesus.

    I also believe that much of what constitutes a homosexual’s existential struggle for self is the result of sin visited upon them so I see the disorder primarily as one of nurture, not nature. This is an aspect of sin that we, as Evangelical Christians, tend to ignore. We talk a lot about sin, but it is usually in terms of behavior, of things we do or don’t do. We rarely talk about sin as a condition of this world and we rarely acknowledge the damage done by sin in the lives of many. The Satan hates God so much that he inflicts as much damage as he can on those whom God has created. Child abuse, rape, verbal torment, bullying in all of its forms, and physical abuse are ready examples of an exterior brutality that damages not only body but psyche and soul. Consequently, those who suffer from the exterior brutality of sin (and there are a lot more of them than you might imagine) find themselves battling demons inside that never seem to give them a choice. As I said, this is the righteous and fertile ground of the Word because the gospel speaks so clearly against Sin. Unfortunately, we continue to talk of homosexual behavior as something that a person can choose not to do and we rarely consider the battle the person is fighting and what we can do to help – even if the person does not acknowledge that there is a war going on inside. It is true that God heals and saves but this truth has to be more than a platitude; it has to be a reality of life with God and within the community of God.

    So what’s the plan? The simple formulation is that we need to be a beacon of hope and hospitality to those afflicted and suffering from disorder, particularly homosexuality, instead of seeming like we are always (or at least perceived as being) against whatever it is we choose to speak about. To get there all we have to do is go back to the basics:

    First and foremost, we stay true to the Word of God by honoring its creative power to change the lives of persons and its inherent character as the two-edged sword that divines and clarifies being (see Hebrews 4:12). This means we simply live and speak gently of a Word that can reveal the hidden most parts of us and we allow the Word to do its work in love. It means we don’t appropriate the Word for our own righteous satisfaction and we don’t “clobber” homosexuals with it (homosexuals call those passages in the Bible that condemn homosexual behavior the “clobber verses”).

    Second, we cultivate a profound humility grounded in our individual encounter with the awesome power of grace (to paraphrase Jonathan Edwards, we truly are sinners in the hands of an angry God…. desperately needing our daily dose of grace) so that we are prepared to enter into the struggles that homosexuals (and others) face with their disorder.

    Third, we speak fervently and clearly of Jesus as the crucified and resurrected Son of God, a God who is himself love so that those who struggle with their disorder can discern at least the outlines of a hope so compelling that they are drawn to God through Jesus and to our community of faith. We put the emphasis on Jesus, not on avoiding Hell or going to Heaven.

    Fourth, we become a people, individually and in faithful community, who are a genuine welcoming beacon of love to those who struggle with any essential sinfulness that keeps each of us from God. In short, we become the glorious City on a Hill that draws all people, including the afflicted and disordered, the homosexual, the transgendered, the alcoholic, the adulterer, the idolater (they’re back – just do a web search for “neopaganism”), and those otherwise broken by life into our midst so they, too, can experience the living reality of the Word of God.

    Fifth, we again accept the responsibility, empowered by the Holy Spirit, of genuinely entering into the lives of others who are beginning, or are on a journey, to encounter and find a way to overcome sin through the power and forgiveness of God as purchased by the blood of Jesus. We do so by providing a safe place of accepting integrity among a people who understand and are committed to helping (not judging) those afflicted with any existential disorder such as homosexuality.

    Sixth, we offer a conceptual framework of salvation, faith and life, built upon the Word of God, the example of Jesus, and the indwelling power of the Holy Spirit that will truly and well instruct, encourage, illuminate and strengthen those who struggle with any disordered behavior, including homosexuality.

    With that said I have some observations:

    First, we need to find a way to discuss homosexuality without condemnation. I believe there is no homosexual alive who is struggling with God and the Bible who does not know the Bible clearly draws a line against homosexual behavior. They already know it so we don’t need to keep telling them unless it fits the moment (like when you are asked: “What does the Bible say about homosexuality?”, “Will you come to my same-sex marriage ceremony?” or “Am I really an abomination to God – and to you?”). This means we do not have to publicly and reflexively counter every argument, oppose every sad utterance by a fellow Christian, show up for every public hearing for Gay Pride Month, or contest every assertion by the world that posits homosexuality as innate and unalterable.

    Second, we preach and speak the heart of the gospel. Now, more than ever, there is a need for a people who stand by God’s Word. God offers a lot more than condemnation in His Word; He offers his Son, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit. God offers not just objective truth; God proffers the truth of self and being through the vital Word that transforms. God bestows love, the kind of love that invites a disordered world to come and be apart of a community of believers who will stand with them in whatever spiritual struggle they might find ourselves fighting. God offers new life, a new self, a new beginning, and a new body at the end. We know the power of resurrection beyond the symbolism of baptism and those disordered need to understand what we know.

    Third, we continue to be the community of believers who offer moments of choice. I did not grow up Southern Baptist so I was amazed at the invitation which is simply a place of private and personal choice for or against God. The invitation is a moment that compelled me to consider where I stood with God, where I ought to stand, and what it would take for me to get there. Even now at the invitation I consider these things even though I am saved. My point: there are lots of ways to gently lay down moments of choice for those who may be disordered. For example, if we preach, hold ourselves out, and, more importantly, actually try to be a community of believers who stand for modesty, abstinence, purity, Biblical marriage, sexual integrity, and a relationship with God built on constant confession (which I see as coming into agreement with God through the discipline by which we make ourselves transparent to God), we lay down points of quiet, yet necessary, choice to encourage those disordered to consider who they are and who they might become in Jesus. Not only that, they undertake the struggle with these choices among people who are themselves valid and steadfast examples of these qualities and who demonstrate and practice love. This also means we will have to seriously consider what it means to be a member of a Southern Baptist Church and a person who worships with us. Sometimes it seems to me that we are now so open to allowing anyone to join as a member that we can be fearful of who might join so we are more apt to turn away those coming into our services who are clearly disordered.

    Finally, we prepare ourselves for ministry. This means those who are called to leadership have to find, lead from, and live the heart of the gospel and be willing to go outside of our righteous comfort zone. It means sermons that do not cater to our strongly held beliefs and opinions but which challenge us to be more like Jesus, thereby revealing God’s desire for what we might become. For those of us in the pews it means we have to stop thinking of ourselves as merely consumers of quality spiritual services. Like smart consumers we tend to want dynamic preaching, exciting and professional music, a great looking building and air conditioning that always works and is just the right temperature all of the time, an interesting Sunday School teacher, a place where we can connect, a dynamic (fill in the name) ministry, and a great staff. All these things are nice but sometimes we forget we are a family, a community of believers, the bride of Christ, and it is we, in community and as individual Christians, who hold the keys to the kingdom. We need to consume less and give more by challenging each other to build and exhibit lives of integrity to show others the Christ and God who compels our integrity and love. If nothing else, we have to prepare ourselves to offer hope and hospitality to those who do not look like us, live like us, talk like us, dress like us, or think like us.

    I believe the Evangelical Church is entering into a new phase, becoming once again like the church right after Pentecost and before Constantine saw the cross at Milvian Bridge. I can see the handwriting on the wall: we are coming again to a time when we will be belittled, marginalized, and ridiculed. As awful as that sounds, we can rejoice because it is the fertile ground for the Word to come alive. I am joyful because it reminds me of a song I loved when I was young and new in Christ: now, more than ever, they will know we are Christians by our love.

    We are not alone: we have each other, joint citizenship in the Kingdom of God, the power of the Holy Spirit, and the leadership and example of a Savior who went where none dared go. If nothing else, what we do about the disorders of homosexuality and of this modern world might help us rightly use the keys Jesus gave us for the Kingdom. We can either sit back and occasionally jingle the keys in our pocket so the world will know we are saved, or we can actually take them out and use them.

    In His love and respectfully,

    Jim Lockhart
    Bethel, Norman

    • Gary Capshaw

      That is a brilliant piece of work, Jim!

  • Brent

    Jim, thanks for the thorough comment. To be honest I experienced some trepidation about submitting this article due to several of the issues you have raised. My intent was not to be hateful but rather truthful and I am strongly convicted that you can’t love someone a part from telling them the truth. Of course how things are said is critically important, but the reality is that in many instances simply saying anything against anyone is grounds for being accused of being hateful. It seems today that tolerance of everything is advocated until people unable to tolerate whatever they find to be intolerant.

    I would point out two important contextual aspects of the article. First, there are two parts to it and it was always intended to be one. Some of what you emphasized is in the second part. The size of the article was the cause for that. Second, it was a rebuttal primarily to those who who are saying the Bible does not speak against, or for, homosexuality. I do however realize that there is always the possibility of collateral damage. Such is the risk of saying anything publicly.

    I agree that tone is important and we must be willing to live in light of Paul’s statement in 1 Cor. 6:11: “Such were some of you; but you were washed……” We must love others by extending the same grace that has been extended to us. We must do more than just condemn, but we must also be clear about what the Bible does and does not say. The absence of extending grace and the absence of holding forth truth are both ditches that we have to be careful to avoid running into. That was one of my aims in writing and from what I read, I think and hope we are essentially in agreement.

    Thanks again for the comment.

  • Brent,

    Thank you for your kind and thoughtful comments. I, too, understand the trepidation about writing about this issue. What you said needs to be said and you stated it well. I do not doubt your heart and your love. I, too, believe that we must never depart from the truth because God’s creative Word does save, heal, and transform. What compelled me to write was my burden that we need to get this one right and it has to start somewhere. It really bothered me about the lesbian couple being turned away. I can only imagine what God might have had in store for them and for us if they had stayed and were afforded the opportunity to rightly encounter the Word and be in fellowship with believers who could love them in spite of their disorder. The possibility of transformation was lost and I am grieved by it. On a positive note, Dr. Mohler took a stab at this issue at the Convention and I have been following the comments of others. I am hopeful that as time passes we will find what God would have us do and become. Jim

  • Joe

    What I find troubling is that Christians have prescribed certain levels, or degrees of “sin severity” if you will to particular sins while diminishing the severity of others. Many biblical scholars like to point out scriptures or excerpts from particular stories in the bible and use those as a basis for their arguments, which is fine. However, very rarely does the bible say anything about any particular sin being worse than another. Indeed, it does happen, but in the case of homosexuality, why is it that society has deemed it to be worse, say, than divorce? As we know, the bible tells us that the marriage between a husband and wife is a sacred bond that should not be broken (hence the vow before God of “until death, yada yada). In fact this precious sanctity of the “for life” marriage is mentioned more often than anything about homosexuality. You would think that, by just the sheer numbers, this would just as important (if not more so), just as demanding of attention, focus, and even governance as the sin of homosexuality. And yet, here we are, allowing divorced people to attend Sunday services and saturate, nay, poison the minds of the flock with their unholy ideas of annulment and marital secession. But it doesn’t stop there! Oh, no. Not only do we allow them to attend, we openly invite them. Worse yet, we know they have been, and still are, divorced, and we think so little of it that most of us tend to forget their grievous offense in the first place–even as they sit, arm-in-arm with their new spouses in unholy matrimony, having shucked the very vows they made before their Christ.
    What I find to be troubling, contradictory, and sometimes downright hypocritical is the idea that we can “cherry-pick” from the bible to suit our lifestyles, in the very same manner we accuse others (i.e. homosexuals) of doing. We demand that followers of Christ be held to certain standards, and yet we do not hold ourselves to the very same.

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