Comments on: Why Churches Get Blamed: Pt 4 https://www.leadthemhome.org/2010/11/why-churches-get-blamed-pt-4.html#utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss Loving LGBT+ People in the Church Thu, 10 Mar 2016 07:04:49 +0000 hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.4.2 By: Lead Them Home/FOTOS Ministries https://www.leadthemhome.org/2010/11/why-churches-get-blamed-pt-4.html#comment-777 Sat, 13 Nov 2010 07:02:56 +0000 http://leadthemhome.org/2010/11/why-churches-get-blamed-pt-4.html#comment-777 PART 2

“Your concluding question in this post seems to negate the paragraph prior or is this double-talk? I'm just trying to understand where you are coming from. It seems that you're very quick to welcome and even excuse behavior within the church.”

I think that the concluding question is a legitimate question that we must wrestle with. The fact that it is difficult to wrestle through these issues does not negate the value of doing so. You raise a very good point: at what point are we excusing sin or turning grace into a license to sin? That is something for all of us to take very seriously. But let’s not blame this on 14 year old gay teens. Let’s start with us – the adults.

“Do we do the same with someone who is an alcoholic or cheats on his wife throughout the week and then leads worship on Sunday?”

In my real-life example, the “kids” I referred to are NOT sexually active. They simply expressed a wrestling over their sexual identity saying, “I think I must be gay.” I do not really believe you intended to compare such a teen to the 40-80% of evangelical grown men who regularly view pornography. But to this point, yes, most adult male porn users continue to make announcements, play drums, go on retreats, serve the church and go on mission trips. I was at a conference today where an expert on porn addiction said that 20-40% of evangelical pastors are also using pornography. So apparently, they even preach. I share your concerns about an illicit church. Let the repentance begin, and I say let it start with us – the grown men in the church.

“Who then determines what is true? Who draws the line in the sand? From what I read here on this blog, truth seems to be blurred.”

It is my sincere hope that while we may approach things a bit differently, that my responses to your questions demonstrate that I share many of your concerns. I just see a lot of bias in the way we excuse ourselves, but we are all too ready to jump on a 13 year old kid wrestling over sexual identity issues. We compartmentalize homosexuality as the evil of all evils, but we widely tolerate porn addiction. Biases are abound in our world and we cannot always convince others of their biases; I just hope that we will allow God to show us ours. That is all I am seeking to do: to make sure the ground at the foot of the Cross is flat. If we want to tilt toward harsh discipline for sin, we can do that but we cannot tilt the Cross against people who sin in ways we do not. God’s Word addresses what is true and that is the line in the sand: it’s just that the Bible equally addresses sin – and bias or judgment. Many portions of scripture come down much harder on bias than the sins that humans struggle with. If that is a blurred truth, then I am guilty as charged.

I want to sincerely thank you for your thoughtful comments. I invite you to comment any time. Please comment if I failed to address any of your points.

God bless,

Bill Henson

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By: Lead Them Home/FOTOS Ministries https://www.leadthemhome.org/2010/11/why-churches-get-blamed-pt-4.html#comment-776 Sat, 13 Nov 2010 07:00:10 +0000 http://leadthemhome.org/2010/11/why-churches-get-blamed-pt-4.html#comment-776 Due to character limitation, I will reply in two comments.

PART 1

“How is the article you cite seen as 'insensitive remarks'?”

Stepping into the mission field beyond the walls of our churches, the mood over these gay teen suicides is one of widespread grief. Perkins’ comments, offered at the peak of this grief, were (and are) interpreted as a culture war statement. His comments suggest that gay teens commit suicide because they know they are abnormal rather than due to rejection and bullying. After almost two years of bullying, 13 year old Asher Brown was kicked down a flight of stairs before he put a gun to his head. Fifteen year old Billy Lucas was told to kill himself repeatedly in addition to other verbal and physical assaults over an extended period. There are gay teens living right now with imminent suicidality due to bullying and rejection. When they hear that the real reason they want to die is because they are abnormal, this communicates to them that the pain they feel from bullying is NOT real and they should just suck it up. In short, you don’t go to the funeral of a teen who got hit by a semi-truck and tell his family that his porn addiction killed him.

“…you have lumped him together with Phelps and others.”

I ran two separate “parts” of this article: one that addressed “hateful” voices; and a separate one (on a separate day) that addressed “insensitive” voices. In my RESOURCES post, I did lump them together as “Hateful/Insensitive Voices” and that was a mistake on my part. I have now created two sections in that post: one for “Hateful” and a separate one for “Insensitive.” Thank you for bringing this to my attention. For the record, I see Perkins’ comments as insensitive (not hateful). Further, I understand how evangelicals not focused on listening to how these things sound to LGBT ears could miss the insensitivity.

“Is the “religious message” really to blame?”

Keep in mind that this entire series has been an analysis of “perceptions” documented in a Religion News Service poll. According to 1,100 Americans, 65% of them answer YES to your question. My only role was to ask WHY and then to step into the missionary field to hear “messages” that they associate as “religious.” The points I have made about both hateful and insensitive culture war messages are well-documented as being extremely offensive to folks in secular culture. However, Perkins comment made six months ago might not have garnered the reaction that it did at this time – a time when families and the Gay Community are grieving these young lost lives. My challenge to the church is this: let us grieve with those who are grieving.

GO TO NEXT COMMENT

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By: Anonymous https://www.leadthemhome.org/2010/11/why-churches-get-blamed-pt-4.html#comment-775 Fri, 12 Nov 2010 19:23:48 +0000 http://leadthemhome.org/2010/11/why-churches-get-blamed-pt-4.html#comment-775 How is the article you cite seen as "insensitive remarks"? He makes very valid points throughout but you have lumped him together with Phelps and others. Is the "religious message" really to blame? Your concluding question in this post seems to negate the paragraph prior or is this double-talk? I'm just trying to understand where you are coming from. It seems that you're very quick to welcome and even excuse behavior within the church. Do we do the same with someone who is an alcoholic or cheats on his wife throughout the week and then leads worship on Sunday? Who then determines what is true? Who draws the line in the sand? From what I read here on this blog, truth seems to be blurred.

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