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October 16, 2007 / compassioninpolitics

Christianity meets homosexuality in UnChristian

216776496_33c95d0a69.jpg

Three quick thoughts from Mike Foster of the XXXChurch.com that struck me:

“In my humble understanding of Jesus in the New Testament, I see a man who sought to restore relationships, not destroy them. A man of compassion who was crazy in love with what the religious of his day deemed the ‘wrong crowd.’”

“The change comes by sitting with our gay friends and family members at their dinner tables and in their living rooms. We go to their events and serve. We seek to do life together and find understanding. It is time for us to humbly serve and honor those we have been so effective at hurting in the past.”

“May you and I today begin to plant a new way of living, loving, and serving those in the gay community and in turn usher in a new kind of Christianity”

Mike Foster
Founder, xxxchurch.com

Thoughts? Is he right? How can the more conservative elements of the church be persuaded? I think the movement to be Red Letter Christians seems to provide a textual answer to more conservative christian stereotypes of gays. Is this issue one of the defining issues of this generation of Christians as the co-author of UnChristian David Kinnaman suggests?

thanks to wise acre for the flickr photo

8 Comments

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  1. Charissa / Oct 16 2007 5:48 pm

    I completely agree that as Christians, we have not shown enough grace to homosexuals. I just want to clarify for myself what you mean by “meeting homosexuals.” Do you still believe that homosexuality is a sinful lifestyle that is contrary to God’s plan for humanity? Or are you suggesting that in embracing gays and lesbians, we turn a blind eye to their “alternative” lifestyle and accept them as they are–without ever challenging them to “go and sin no more”?

  2. compassioninpolitics / Oct 16 2007 6:08 pm

    Good distinction Charissa. I think short of sinning ourselves we should do life with gays and lesbians.

    My interpretation of scripture is that homosexuality is a sin, but that God’s grace can cover that sin and that its not any worse than another sin. So, I’m not advocating a blind eye. I believe, just like your post, that we should extend the hand of friendship and grace far, far more often than shaking a finger.

    I hope I answered your question!

  3. carol / Oct 22 2007 2:45 am

    I don’t hate anyone nor do I single out someone because of their particular choice of sin. But if I see anyone of my brothers or sisters in known sin, and they’re not repentant, then it is my duty to gently correct. Never, ever will I condone homosexuality because it is sin, just like all the others. And if I tell a homosexual this, I would quickly be labeled as a ‘hater’ but in reality, I’m trying to spare them from an eternity in hell.

    There are some extremely outspoken ‘christians’ out there who do harm to others but they give Christianity a bad name. But just telling someone something they don’t want to hear does not make it motivated by hate necessarily. But sometimes it is as evidenced by physical violence and true Christianity never condones that.

  4. ThirstyJon / Oct 31 2007 9:36 am

    It is funny. I agree with everything that the xxxchurch guy said.

    But I am at the same time very concerned about some of the political movement often coming from the homosexual community.

    Anyone who calls themselves a “homsexual” is just as valuable to God as anyone else.

    But I can’t support “gay marriage.” I can’t support indoctrination through the school system that homosexuality is ok. I cannot tell a Christian that they can participate in homosexuality anymore than I can tell them to steal or commit adultery.

    What a bind. I would rather reach out and be kind and show someone love, but the agenda coming from some homosexual activists is so dangerous.

    It is a careful road to walk, to stand for truth but love all human beings.

    ThirstyJon

  5. compassioninpolitics / Nov 2 2007 9:15 am

    We live in a society that discriminates against gays for a variety of reasons. In order to rectify that I don’t see why the school system helping to correct that discrimination is a bad thing. In fact, it might help prevent hate crimes like the Matthew Shepard tragedy.

    I’m not a fan of gay marriage, however as a matter of the equal protection clause of the 14th amendment, civil unions deserve more protection than they currently receive.

  6. Chris Moncus / Nov 2 2007 8:39 pm

    I think we live in a Christian bubble where if we are taught anything regarding homosexuals it is that they are in sin and need Jesus. That’s it. We learn nothing of their struggle, their lives, their needs. We learn nothing of how to really share the love of God without our gay-dar going off and us reverting to hell-fire and brimstone.

    I can’t minister to gays because I don’t know how to.

    Church… care to help?

  7. compassioninpolitics / Nov 2 2007 10:18 pm

    Very, very well said Chris.

    Its far easier to dismiss the beam in our own eyes…when we see specks in others eyes.

  8. Jake / Nov 5 2007 2:36 pm

    The problem I have with the *practice* of the Christian faith generally (not the actual faith, just how people tend to practice it).

    Another commenter said: “What a bind. I would rather reach out and be kind and show someone love, but the agenda coming from some homosexual activists is so dangerous.”

    Take out “homosexual activists” and put in “Christian activists” and the statement works exactly the same.

    Christians in American all too often talk about how their faith dictates certain things and therefore it’s merely their duty to follow them. This is just as ridiculous as a soldier justifying killing unarmed civilians by saying he was just following orders. Christianity has taken many turns over the years as society has evolved and changed. The parts of the Bible that are no longer relevant to our lives are ignored (stoning adulterers anyone??), yet it seems that the Christian base never seems to remember that. They just continue on as aggressively connected to this generation’s interpretation and usage of the scripture to justify their own prejudice and opinions.

    Our society today has so completely screwed up what Christianity was supposed to be about (you know, what Jesus actually preached) that Christianity has aligned itself all too broadly with the Republican party. The same party that actively campaigns for the current 2 wars and an upcoming 3rd (Iran). It actively supports and defends torture and the dismissal of habeas corpus. It is largely associated mainly with the 2nd Amendment, the right to bear arms. It’s the party that continues to have it’s biggest “moral” advocates busted for soliciting sex in a bathroom (Larry Craig) or busted for cheating on their wives (Newt Gingrich, all while leading the charge against Bill Clinton for doing the same). It’s the party who is rallying around anti-foreigner positions (immigration) and anti-gay positions (gay marriage), where “Christian” members are given a platform to talk about how they dislike Mexicans and gays. It’s the party that’s denying blanket healthcare coverage to poor children. This, my friends, is the loudest voice for Christianity in the world.

    Seriously think about that – President Bush is the most powerful leader in the world, known in nearly every part of the world, and known largely by his connection to Christianity. He was elected due to large scale support from the Christian Right, and now the Christian faith is largely associated with the things outlined above.

    It’s no wonder so many people think so poorly about Christians these days, even the ones doing wonderful things.

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