Posted tagged ‘homosexuality’

Homosexuality and the Church

November 27, 2018


I am a big fan of Justin Brierley’s podcast, Unbelievable! on Premiere Christian Radio in the UK. The theme of the podcast is to interview persons with different viewpoints on a variety of subjects that usually focus on some aspect of faith. Often the interviewees include a person of faith and a person of no faith. Sometimes, the interviewees are people of different faiths. The podcast that aired on November 24, 2018, included two Christians on different sides of the debate about homosexuality: How should gay Christians express their sexuality?

David Bennett “grew up in an agnostic/atheist home” but became a “conservative” Christian, while Justin Lee represents the mirror image of David’s experience. Justin grew up in “a very devoutly Christian home”.

Justin relates that he understood that being a Christian meant “taking a loving but principled stand against homosexuality” and that “being gay is a sinful choice”. He felt it was his obligation as a Christian to speak out and encourage people not to be gay. He believed that God would “lead people out of homosexuality”. He believed that homosexuality was a choice, which is what his Southern Baptist church taught.

But then, Justin came to realize that he was same sex attracted himself. In spite of praying and believing that God would change him, his feelings didn’t change. He struggled with that realization until he came to believe that same sex attraction is not a sin. Though Justin is still single, he now engages in ministry to the gay and lesbian community who he says have been left adrift by the greater Christian community.

These two men, both same sex attracted, have come from opposite shores, crossed in between, and take different positions in respect to homosexuality and faith. They engage in a very thoughtful, honest and thought-provoking conversation with Justin Brierley in the podcast.

You can hear the whole thing by clicking on the link in the first paragraph above. Meanwhile, I will summarize their divergent experiences that cross over from opposite shores below.

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To Bake or Not To Bake a Cake

April 17, 2015

Client at shop paying at cash register_

I understand a blog post has gone viral around the Internet called “Bake for them Two”. The blogger suggests that, when asked to bake a wedding cake for a gay marriage, Christians should not just bake one; they should bake two, even if they believe gay marriage is wrong. The basis for the blog article is this statement in the Sermon on the Mount: if someone forces you to walk a mile with them, walk with them two. (Matthew 5:41)

The back drop to the short parable is that Roman law required people to carry a Roman soldier’s equipment up to a mile if demanded. Such a request of a Jew in that time of Roman occupation of the Promised Land would have been anathema. It would have been a difficult thing for the religious Jews of Judea to stomach – to help their occupiers by carrying their equipment. The suggestion by Jesus that one should be willing to go two miles if required to carry the equipment for one mile was a radical idea (like turning the other cheek, praying for your persecutors and loving your enemies, which are also part of the Sermon on the Mount).

The Bake for Them Two blogger suggests that the same principle should be applied to the current controversy over wedding cakes for gay marriage. Even if a person believes that gay marriage is immoral, if asked to bake one wedding cake for a gay marriage, we should bake two!

Before I even read the first blog, I came across a video blog (Stand to Reason) in which the blogger questions the idea that baking two wedding cakes is the proper response of the Christian who believes that the union of same sex couples is sin/immoral. The speaker poses these questions: if someone asks you to steal a man’s cloak, should you steal two? If someone asks you to make one pornographic movie, should you make two? Going back to Jesus, who was a carpenter: if someone asked him to make one idol, should Jesus make two?

The video blogger obviously concludes that the Christian should not bake one wedding cake for the gay couple, let alone two. The argument might seem compelling to the Christian who wants to do the right thing and not endorse what is believed to be an immoral act. But does the argument logically follow? Is that what Jesus would really say?

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