Sunday, June 28, 2015

Cheering, Jeering and Everything In Between

Lots of stuff going on at FB the past few days. All the way from cheers to jeers and everything in between about the Supreme Court ruling on marriage. marriage is legal. In all fifty states. Boys can marry boys and girls can marry girls.

Perhaps I should reword that because that is exactly one of the “look at what you did” complaints I’ve seen several times on my Facebook feed. Claims that the push is now on to have pedophilia legalized. Yep, it’s that slippery slope thing the American Family Association, Focus on the Family and Mike Huckabee etc have warned us about. I mean, it makes perfect sense that comes next. Homosexual love, pedophile love and the list goes on and on. “Love is love, no?”

Ahhhhhhh….no. There is the issue of CONSENT. Under the law, kids cannot give their consent to marry the dirty old man who lives next door. They cannot even give their consent to have sex with the dirty old man who lives next door. They aren’t old enough. Just like they are not old enough to drive a car, buy alcohol or get a tattoo. They are MINORS. And the bestiality worry. Different species but the same arguments apply. A dog, horse, cow, cat, monkey, goat etc cannot consent to marriage. They cannot consent to sexual relations. That argument is just ridiculous.

Why this became the evangelical Christian’s battle cry, pet issue, most horrendous “sin,” I can’t say. But they just need to let it go. Fairness and civil rights won. And really, aren’t Christians….followers of Jesus….citizens of another kingdom. The Supreme Court has no say in the Kingdom of Jesus.

Jesus answered, My kingdom is not of this world John 18:36

What would Jesus do in the wake of this ruling? Would he be posting on FB about how God will judge America? Would he be worried about hypothetical slippery slope outcomes? Would he be fretting that Christians will be persecuted? News flash...He told us we would be persecuted. Christians will be persecuted. That theme (that I don’t like any more than the next guy) is ALL THROUGH the New Testament.

I think Jesus would be doing what Jesus did….proclaiming the light of a higher kingdom, a light that shines in every man, ministering to the sick, the poor, the outcasts. Proclaiming the Father to a world desperately in need of a revelation of God’s love.

Monday, June 15, 2015

Tony Campolo Changes His Mind.....

I’ve written about or quoted Tony Campolo in a half dozen blog posts….HERE.

I love Tony Campolo and have followed his ministry...and his wife's ministry....for years. She has always been for the full inclusion of LGBT folks in the church. Tony, well, not so much, although his heart was always kind and tender.

It looks like Tony finally came around. There has been considerable backlash about his statement published on June 8th but he is no stranger to backlash. He has been riling up fellow evangelicals for years. He was even “tried” on heresy charges. In fact, he is the only living evangelical to have endured such a thing. And at the hands of his fellow believers. From Wikipedia:

Campolo was the subject of an informal heresy hearing in 1985 brought about by several assertions in his 1983 book A Reasonable Faith, particularly his claim that, "Jesus is actually present in each other person". The book became a hot button issue, and the controversy caused Campus Crusade for Christ and Youth for Christ to block a planned speaking engagement by Campolo. The Christian Legal Society empowered a "reconciliation panel", led by noted theologian J. I. Packer, to examine the issue and resolve the controversy. The panel examined the book and questioned Campolo. The panel issued a statement saying that although it found Campolo's statements "methodologically naïve and verbally incautious", it did not find them to be heretical.

What pompous asses Christians can be. It seems to me two of the beliefs that mainstream Christians hold nearest and dearest are their beliefs in hell and the depravity of homosexuality. They are also unwilling to take a closer look-see beneath the surface meaning of words in their modern bible translations to see if perhaps they could be mistaken....if the traditional church could be mistaken. That’s how Tony came to a different conclusion.

I was deeply uncertain about what was right.  It has taken countless hours of prayer, study, conversation and emotional turmoil to bring me to the place where I am finally ready to call for the full acceptance of Christian gay couples into the Church.

Another quote from Tony….

However, I am old enough to remember when we in the Church made strong biblical cases for keeping women out of teaching roles in the Church, and when divorced and remarried people often were excluded from fellowship altogether on the basis of scripture. Not long before that, some Christians even made biblical cases supporting slavery. Many of those people were sincere believers, but most of us now agree that they were wrong. I am afraid we are making the same kind of mistake again, which is why I am speaking out.  

Good for you, Tony….

You can read his statement HERE.

And another article that talks about his change of heart and whether this might be the tipping point for evangelicals is HERE.