Monday, December 10, 2007

Response to Kirb

A person who goes by the name of "Kirb" left a comment on a post from a while back.

hello, doc so i was just wondering how you can justify homosexuality in the Bible. due to the fact that you are a protestant and all your beliefs come from the Bible alone, i would like a Biblical explanation of homosexuality. Also i have recently spoken with a lutheran [sic] who says Pastors are not allowed to express homosexuality and that the stand of the Lutheran church is No gay pastors.
One thing that scares me about your whole situation described above is your willingness to throw God out on a whim when you are merely going through one tough time. i would hope that all the preists [sic] who guide me, although they are not homosexuals, would not let hard times effect their faith.

This is the same post someone else decided to post a critique of my ability to deal with life. I find that interesting.

My answer to the first question, how do I justify homosexuality? Well, there are plenty who are far more eloquent than I and whom have taught many lectures I sat through, who have addressed this question. Of course, if you approach the subject from the prospective that the "question" of homosexuality has been absolutely and definitively answered, then these essays will not change your perspective. If, Kirb, you truly want to learn, read the material from the perspective that the Holy Spirit could be working in our world today and God is not done with educating us.

A quick, off the cuff, answer is, "We don't take everything in the Bible as "Bible Truth" (stoning adulterers, silencing women) why are these six verses lifted up for special consideration? While I was in seminary, there were people who were divorced, there were people had tattoos, there were even people going to Red Lobster and wearing blended material! And although these are things that are prohibited by the Bible, there was no problem with ordaining them. But if, as this past week's lectionary states, you will know the tree by the fruit, the fruit of the spirit I see in many GLBT people far exceeds that which I see from hateful fundamentalist churches.

To address your questioning of a leader who can question the existence of God. Well, from what I can see, I am in good company. John of the Cross, Mother Teresa, Henri Nouwen, Thomas Merton, and even David in the Psalms, have their moments of doubts. If you have read any other parts of my blog, you would see that things in my life have been quite difficult. I do not consider that I was "throw God out on a whim when [I was] merely going through one tough time." Well, if you consider the prospect of losing my job, my home, my car, my friends, my family, and my whole self-identity as one tough time, then I guess I am spiritually weak. But if you would have read, you would have seen that my whole basis of self-identification and every facet of my life were about to change. I was feeling that if I weren't gay this wouldn't be a problem. I was feeling that I had gone through a ton of self-deception to try to convince myself that I was not gay. I keep hearing that all that I have to do is pray and trust and God will deliver me. I have prayed and trusted but God did not deliver me. So either God did not exist or God was some kind of sadist that enjoyed my suffering. It was actually easier to assume God did not exist than to believe that the God who created me and the world wanted me live in loneliness and despair.

Now, if you think that I should have remained depressed and despairing and believing God was purposely not answering my prayers, and just "shut up and believe," well... All I know, is I would not have been good to anyone until I could come to terms with God. Thank God for the billboard! It is through our struggles that we are able to help others. If this were not so, support groups would not exist.

Thanks for your comment, Kirb! I truly mean that! Please look around and ask more questions!



Anonymous said...

Actually, doc, i do happen to take everything in the Bible as "Bible truth". It seems as though you have written off the Bible in your explanation. Some of the laws were certainly written for that time in history (for example: in Matthew 19:7-8 the pharisees asked why Moses allowed divorce and Jesus answered because of the hardness of their heart, but it was not so from the beginning). Others, such as the Ten Commandments, were written for all eternity. You can not merely throw all of them out. does that make sense?

I would argue that homosexual acts are eternally forbidden based on Paul's letter to the Romans chapter 1. Here, Paul puts it in a theological context. He says that homosexual acts are the result of a darkened mind, those who have rejected God's word. They were also penalized for their perversity.

I encourage you to check out a book called "Beyond Gay". Also, i beg you to look into a group i know of called "Courage". It is for those who have been involved in homosexual activity but are now trying to live chaste lives. I agree that you have been going through some rough times and that makes this all the more important. You, as a paster, are put in a position in which it is crucial to teach the whole truth. I urge you to meditate on Romans 1, and ask for the guidance of the Holy Spirit of Truth, who will "guide us into all truth" Jn 16:13 i'll keep you in my prayers constantly, as i am sure all the saints will!!

I would also like a reply.

Wayne said...

A well writin post!