Tag Archives: homosexuality

UMC During A Time of Winnowing

One of the most divisive topics is now “threatening” to divide the United Methodist Church.  You can read about it here if you haven’t been following along; United Methodists Edge Toward Breakup Over LGBT Policies.  I don’t understand the “edging” bit, as the Methodists as a whole already discussed this and voted on it at their conference back in February.  The vote was clear; the traditional stance on marriage stands.

I get that if this continues to stand that the UMC is going to lose a lot of congregations and individuals, but why would the UMC be forced to split?  It’s been voted on; here are the beliefs of the UMC.  That means if you disagree with that, and are not going to follow the guidelines, then why are you clinging to the title of Methodist?  I would like to think it is out of some type of moral hesitancy to further split the body of Christ, but I’m not that naive.  What do I think is going on?  It’s one more way to tear down the Church from the inside out, it’s a way to take the UMC and publicly force it to bow to progressive ideals that do not accept the New Testament God-given and traditional Christian definition of marriage.

Make no mistake, this is a “Winnowing Topic;” it does separate the wheat from the chaff.  As you winnow, the wind carries away the chaff as it is not built to withstand the wind, rather it is driven before it.  The question of Homosexual marriage is one that cannot be skirted.  And, to be clear, I’m talking about God ordained marriage, not state ordained.  Just as we don’t rely on the state to baptize, nor to tell us who is baptized, believers should not, cannot, rely on the state to tell us who is or is not married.  This is why it seems traditional Christians are always harping on homosexuality; it’s not something that can be danced around.  It’s too much of a prevalent topic in society that those who deny that two men or two women can be married in the eyes of God stand out like a sore thumb.

Progressives can’t tolerate dissent, and anyone who does not agree must be taught a lesson.  That’s why I think there is so much “angst” over trying not to leave the UMC intact.  If it’s left intact, and it’s the progressive liberals that must leave, that is an admission of defeat of the ideal, and that is the unforgivable sin in progressivism.  The traditional Methodist are clear; they love and welcome anyone into congregations, and to some extent even the pulpit, but they are commanded by God not to love or approve of certain actions; hence, it is the actions that are not welcome and need to change.  One of the premises of Methodist belief is that we do have free will in that with the help of God we can choose our actions.  The liberal progressives within the UMC want to change the unchangeable.

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Filed under Christianity, Of Interest, Religion and Politics

You’re a sinner, I’m a sinner…

It’s basic Christian theology, right?  That was my immediate thought, and the way I’ve always been taught, both by pastors, family, the Bible, and yes, the Holy Spirit.  Apparently, though, there are many of my fellow Christians out there that mouth these words yet never take them to heart, and quite frankly it’s driving me a bit insane.  I don’t know if this is because pastors, teachers, and preachers out there are not teaching this, or if it has become such a pat phrase that we just nod right on by it.  Honestly, how many of my fellow believers out there read the title “You’re a sinner, I’m a sinner,” and nod right along without really stopping to think what that means?

Two dialogues this week brought this to my attention, and it is actually one of the main reasons I started this blog when I did.  The first conversation occurred on a Christian forum that I am a member of, in a thread discussing the death penalty from a Christian perspective.  Here is a paraphrase of one of the comments that appeared in the thread, “Well, I would hope that if I did anything that deserved the death penalty, that they would catch me, and carry out the sentence.”  I hate to break it to you, but we have all done things that deserve the death penalty according to the highest law in the land; God’s own law.  Has anyone really studied the stoneable offenses in the Old Testament (OT)?  There is a pretty big list including adultery, murder, not honoring your parents, etc… they earned the death penalty.  “Well,” you say, “I’ve never killed anyone, I’ve never cheated on my spouse!”  Any self-respecting Christian should have a ready comeback to that idea, straight from Christ’s own teachings, here’s a hint, see Matthew Chapter 5.  Not enough?  Many of my fellow Christians who like to push works, and even condemn others while trying to avoid condemnation themselves love the book of James, so let’s see what James tells us: James 2:10 For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all. Well, now, that changes a few things, or at least it should.

The second discussion that brought this to my attention was an interview done with John Barrowman (of Torchwood fame, go Captain Jack!) on a BBC show that I watched via youtube.  One of the topics discussed was the fact that John is openly homosexual.  Also, he made mention on this show (and elsewhere in other interviews as well), that he believes in God, and was brought up in the church.  Now, this post isn’t to discuss homosexuality, but rather something more fundamental.  John made the point that it was wrong for Christians, (or “other” Christians, perhaps) to say to him that he is evil, bad, and wrong.  Not only that, but he then made the comment that he was a good man.  Two things came to mind the first was that I’m sure there’ve been some “lovely” Christians that have indeed spat on Homosexuals, called them names, and pronounced damnation on them, calling them evil, bad and wrong just because of their homosexuality, and that’s a true shame.  The second thing that came to mind, is “what theology has John, and all those condemning homosexuals for their sin without looking in a mirror been taught?”

The stance clearly presented in scripture, and by Jesus Himself, is that none of us are “good.”  None of us.  Yes, without Christ, John Barrowman is evil, bad, and wrong, and so am I, and so are you.  That’s the whole point. There is none good but God, our righteousness is as filthy rags, no there are none that doeth good… “Yup, yup, yup, you’re right, none good, yup!”  No! Don’t just agree with it, think about it.  We are all a bunch of sinners, who, according to scripture, if we break one law, we get charged with ’em all!  All of our hope, all of our faith rests solely on Christ; not on what sin we haven’t committed, because we’ve committed them all according to the word.  There’s not one mere human better than any other.

Is this post a hidden message against the death penalty, or one saying homosexual acts are fine?  By no means.  Is it a message that supports sinning so that grace may abound? I join Paul in saying, “God forbid!”  There is indeed right and wrong, and sin that we should actively try to avoid with the help and teaching of the scripture, and The Spirit.  I’m just hoping this will help even one person soak this idea in and really think about it; it is fundamental theology, and is meant to get everyone’s eyes firmly on Christ, because He is indeed the source of our only true Righteousness.  It is also meant to banish the foolish idea that any one of us is “better” or less deserving of death than any other human; our only means of escaping the death penalty in this life or the next is faith in Jesus Christ!

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