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Old 29th Jul 2011, 03:33 PM   #1
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My advice about being LGBT and Christian (very long)

Hey guys, you'll remember that I wrote a note (more like a mini-essay actually) coming out on Facebook. Well, I wrote another one! After reading about a gay man around my age who was having significant trouble reconciling his sexuality with his Christian beliefs a few weeks ago, I felt inspired to search for ways that the Bible either does or does not condemn homosexuality, specifically monogamous, loving LGBT relationships. Beware, this is quite long because my explanation is quite detailed in some places, but I think it has an important message (if I do say so myself). Anyway, enjoy!

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Disclaimer: I'm not trying to tell people what to think; I'm merely presenting evidence that I've found. Also, I know this is long, but please read the entire thing before you comment. I spent a fairly long time doing research and crosschecking my findings. Now, I'm not saying any part of the Bible can be 'ignored,' but I will show how some passages have been misinterpreted, their original words and/or meanings sometimes skewed or lost in translation from the original language.

Though I am agnostic, this is how I hope to live my life, above all other ideologies: "For this, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not kill, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness, Thou shalt not covet; and if there be any other commandment, it is briefly comprehended in this saying, namely, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. Love worketh no ill to his neighbour: therefore love is the fulfilling of the law." - Rom 13:9-10. Yes Virginia, a gay, 'fallen' Catholic, relationship-oriented 19 year old can accurately quote the KJV of the Bible. He also chooses to avoid a sex-centered lifestyle (which is lived by equal numbers of people of ALL sexualities) for a lifestyle identical to that enjoyed by the majority of heterosexuals, the only difference being the person - note that I say person, not people; I'd be perfectly happy to meet the person I want to spend the rest of my life with on the first go - he spends it with.

Though our (relatively) young language has but a singular word for love, ancient Greek, one of the oldest Bible languages, has 4: Agápe, Éros, Philia, and Storge. Agape is unconditional or true love, that love felt by parents towards their children and that love which comes closest to that love God is said to feel for ALL humanity. Eros, despite what one might think based on the Greek deity of the same name, is not erotic or sexual love; rather, it is a passionate love, deeper than the love between friends; it therefore makes sense that this would be the love between two people who are in a relationship. Philia, or neighborly/'friendly' love, is the love that we humans feel for most of our fellows, reserving the previous two only for the most special people in our lives. Storge represents natural affection, which is used almost exclusively in ancient texts to signify the love felt by family members. These 4 words describe the complexity of the world we are thrust into upon departing adolescence. As a gay 19-year old, I can appreciate that, for the hope I have listed above to be realized, I will have to meet someone for whom I feel all 4 of these kinds of love equally.

Ok, now onto the Bible. I guess first I'll tackle the "clobber passages." Funny thing is, though Lev 18:22 is the most often used passage to decry homosexuality, the majority of gay Christians (and Christians for that matter) can ignore it. Firstly, to ignore the context in which this passage was written is to deny that Biblical passages exist outside of context, which is certainly farcical as we now know that slavery is extremely reprehensible despite being supported in the Bible (Exodus 21:7-11 is an example) and have thankfully long accorded basic human compassion and much needed support to rape victims (despite rape victims being commanded to wed their attackers in Deuteronomy 22:28-29). Clearly, Biblical societies are markedly different from our own; this isn't to say that either model is more or less 'Godly,' but each just has its own context. Second, as I wrote above, if one lives in accordance to Rom 13:9-10, one fulfills "the law" of Moses i.e. the Old Testament, absolving one of any obligations to follow any writings within Lev.

Next, I'll cover Cor 6:9-10. While the translated NAS English version condemns "effeminates [and] homosexuals," it is worth noting that this snippet is translated from the Greek word Arsenokoitais, which, quite literally, means "man with many beds," a colloquial approximation of which is, bluntly, "man-whore," which you can obviously be regardless of sexuality. Seems like it's promiscuity and not alternate sexuality that's being condemned here; also, what about those straight men that do act in a way our society considers to be effeminate, the so-called "metrosexuals?" Do we condemn them based on their outward appearance alone? That's not very Christian! Now I know that the Bible is the Bible, but if I'm going to follow something written by Paul, I'd rather read it in the language he wrote it so I can best comprehend his intentions.

I suppose I should cover Sodom and Gommorah next. This time, I'm going to use Hebrew. Sodomite is represented in Hebrew-written Bibles as qadesh(a), which is used exclusively in the Bible (only 6 times I should note) to mean a male or female prostitute serving at a temple consecrated to a pagan fertility deity. Sodom, however, translates to Cedom, meaning to scorch or burn (quite appropriate considering Sodom's ultimate fate). So clearly these words are only related by pronunciation. Some might say "well Twisty, the sin of Sodom was homosexuality." Actually, it wasn't, at least according to Jesus. Quoting Mark 6:11, if a city "shall not receive you (you referring to all people and the Disciples specifically)...it shall be more tolerable for Sodom and Gomorha in the day of judgment, than for that city;" now, if Sodom and Gommorah were primarily destroyed because of homosexuality as some might claim, one would think that when Jesus mentions either city, he would mention male-male sex as a warning against Christians. He doesn't. Looking at the history of early Christianity (hmm, I wonder how many Christians know about the Council of Nicaea?), it is worth noting that, in the early years of Christianity, Talmudic scholars decided to use Plato's views of human sexuality to posit that Sodom's sin was not their lack of hospitality, as put forth by Jesus, but pederasty and male prostitution. Besides the fact that anti-gay Christians espousing this view are promoting the words of men above those of Jesus, I simply do not understand how pederasty and prostitution somehow extend to cover all gay men, especially because the vast, vast majority of gay men do not engage in either activity, and some straight men might engage in both. In addition, nowhere in the passages concerning Sodom/sodomites does either God or a Biblical writer ever speak of sodomites (which as I've explained is a male temple prostitute) in the context of a monogamous, non-ritualistic same-sex relationship. Once again, people might disagree with me, but I'll side with the words of Jesus on this one.

Next I'll look at Romans 1:21-31. Though the people spoken of in this passage were punished mainly for turning away from God towards idolatry, this passage indeed does say that men and women exchanged their "natural function for that which is unnatural." Once again, I turned to Greek for insight. The English word "natural" comes from two Greek words: phusikos (natural disposition) and phusis (an instinctive act) - both of these meanings are literal. It makes logical sense, then, to conclude that natural in this sense does not mean "of nature" but "who one is naturally, before exposure to culture and/or any form of behavioral modification," especially because this passage was originally written in Greek. Therefore, one can see that God caused the subjects of the passage to engage in sexual activity that was not in accordance with their own innate dispositions (in this case it was homosexual sex, but had the subjects been gay it would have been heterosexual sex). Most people know that humanity is a diverse species, of many different qualities and traits. So of course what one subgroup sees as natural is would be unnatural to another and vice-versa. Considering that a gay Christian, by virtue of still being Christian despite struggling with their sexuality, has not turned away from God, this passage loses much of its 'oomph.' Gay Christians did not suddenly become gay due to some kind of crisis of faith; they were born that way.

In the final leg of the Biblical portion of this little note, I'll refer you to what Jesus had to say about homosexuality. You ready? Here it is: " ". That's right, Jesus had nothing to say about homosexuality. It could be because the concept of homosexuality as we understand it did not exist during Jesus' time, or it could be because Jesus thought his words were needed far more in other areas, such as addressing things in the Old Testament like Sodom and Gommorah, and promoting 'love your neighbor as you would be loved.' Personally, I think it's a little of column A and a little of column B.

I suppose I'll move onto the scientific evidence supporting innate homosexuality now. Since the late 20th century, both the APA and the American Psychiatric Association have asserted that sexual orientation is inborn and not a choice, though the way one lives in accordance with this orientation is (which I agree with). From personal experience and what I've read and heard, no LGBT person, if they had a choice, would willfully decide to not be straight if they could. Why would you choose to be an orientation that will, in all likelihood, subject you to intense persecution and possibly cause you to be seriously injured or killed as a result of bigotry?

The next thing is the issue of celibacy. Some Christians, though not condemning homosexuality, might tell you that not acting on your homosexuality (in other words, celibacy) is the only way to live in harmony with God's words (which as I've shown above is not at all what the Bible instructs us to do). Highly respected theologian and philosopher Helmut Thielicke says it best that a "homosexual relationship is...very certainly a search for the totality of the other human being. He who says otherwise has not yet observed the possible human depth of a homoerotic-colored friendship" (Thielicke, 271). Furthermore, the Quakers, a very well-known and long-practiced denomination, put forth that "surely it is the nature and quality of a relation that matters; one must not judge it by its outer appearance but its inner worth. Homosexual affection can be as selfless as heterosexual affection, and, therefore, we cannot see that it is in some way morally worse." (Alastair Huron, ed., Toward a Quaker View of Sex) To tie the two of these together, a 1975 symposium of the Christian Association for Psychological Sciences concerning homosexuality concluded that, while such acts as fornication, promiscuity, and adultery are sins, a committed monogamous same-sex relationship is not; indeed, the symposium emphasizes that a monogamous relationship certainly is not against God's will, and therefore celibacy should not be forced upon gay Christians [or any Christian, for that matter] (Michael Nava and Robert Dawidoff, Created Equal: Why Gay Rights Matter to America, 120, 147). I'm only going to emphasize that one should not forsake a monogamous relationship with another man or woman in favor of celibacy due to someone telling them doing otherwise is a sin because of their homosexuality; on the nature of promiscuous, purely physical sex (and by that I mean 'hook-ups') among any sexuality, I will not comment, but I'd imagine this behavior is considered a sin when engaged in by heterosexuals as well.

Now I'm going to focus on the interactions between gay Christians and non-gay Christians. Even if one might have issues with homosexuality, they say they "love the sinner but hate the sin." I'm sorry, but how is this a Christian principle? God is the antithesis of hate. While I'm sure He comprehends hate, one of the basest but most complex human emotions, He is so far above it that He even loves those who killed His only son. How, in the desire to live as free from sin as possible (a truly admirable goal), can we hate the supposed sin in others? To take up our Bibles and point our fingers at LGBT individuals is, quite honestly, a flashback to the Pharisees, who Jesus condemned for their self-righteousness and, frankly, ungodly judging of others' sins; judgement should really be left to God - actually, John 5:22 goes even further to say that Jesus is the one meant to judge, not God, and since Jesus never said anything about homosexuality, that leads me to believe God does not judge my homosexuality when looking at the kind of person I am - who is the only one capable of understanding the entire scope of human psyche and action. Furthermore, as I have shown extensively above, there is no Biblical evidence (even if the Bible is read literally as a strict set of rules) that ethical, monogamous, loving homosexuality is a sin. So how can you hate someone for a sin that they really aren't performing? By the way, go up to Matthew Shepard or Tyler Clementi's famiiy, and tell them that you love the sinner but hate the sin. I'm sure they'll praise you for your Christian philia.


To my fellow LGBT Christians and agnostics: you might be told "God loves you, but too much to leave you there." I tell you now, trite as it may sound: it gets better. God created you exactly the way you were, sexuality and all. You can believe He created another person for you to enter in a same-sex relationship with, or you might believe that you'll just find someone; I'm not going to tell you which is correct because I don't know. What I will say is that God loves you too much to let you be unable to accept your own sexuality. While I certainly do not intend to compare myself or anyone else to Jesus in any conceivable fashion (except God loves us as He loves Jesus), Jesus was persecuted and eventually crucified because He preached values that went completely against the popular dogma of the time, simply because some either could not understand or refused to understand that He was the Messiah spoken of in the Old Testament. As LGBT, look to Jesus' example above all others for inspiration. Remember John 3:16? It doesn't say anything about homosexuality as a bar from entering heaven; neither did/does Jesus and God. Clearly, God loves you just the way you are, and to change that would be to change the wonderful, unique person He created, even if you do so to fit the values that other people, in the human tendency to fear and condemn that which is not the majority/the status quo, force upon you. Take comfort, in your own self-acceptance and realization that you are a Christian who happens to be LGBT rather than an LGBT individual who happens to be Christian (the difference between these two is huge). I'm sure a lot of you have read C.S Lewis' "The Screwtape Letters." I'm not sure if the devil is always the one that causes us to sin - most if not all of the time our sins are the result of our own conscious actions - but the metaphor is clear. Furthermore, if homosexuality were a sin, why would the devil encourage someone to be him/herself, gay or otherwise? Your true self was created by God, in His image, and be you gay, straight, bisexual, pansexual, or otherwise, your sexuality is a part of your true self as much as your mitochondrial DNA. I highly doubt that God would consider it a sin for you to embrace your true self as He made you.

To non-LGBT Christians: I can guarantee to you with more certainty than I usually feel that there is NOT a 'gay agenda.' The vast majority of us are just like you, our gender preferences the sole exception. We have jobs, we pay our taxes (gay men and women pay taxes to support education though they were unable to adopt children until fairly recently), we wish to live ethical and moral and loving lives with one person, and some of us have felt the incredibly powerful light of God's love. All we ask is that you treat us with that same love as best a human can, loving us not despite of or because of our sexuality, but as a complete package that just so happens to include our sexuality. Conduct yourselves knowing that, with any word of hate (blatant or not) you speak or write, you run the risk of pushing someone who's LGBT away from God. And I'd imagine God is saddened immensely when we drive each other away with hatred.

In conclusion, yes, I am a gay agnostic. Yes, if God created me, then He created me to be gay. Do I know the purpose for it? Not yet. I do know, however, that my sexuality is an integral part of my life, though not the central part, and God put me where I can do the most good in this short but not too short life of mine. Who knows? Perhaps one day I'll help someone who's struggling to accept themselves, and give them the tools to help others. For what more can one hope to do in life than to leave the earth better than how they found it?

One final thing: some non-LGBT folk (both those who support and oppose us) speak of a gay "lifestyle." There is no singular gay lifestyle. True, some of us are into clubbing and some of us are into casual sex and some of us are into hard drugs; however, that doesn't mean all of us are. Some of us choose not to partake in any of those activities, and chances are we would choose not to partake if we were straight. Being LGBT doesn't change the way you live your life, it just changes, as I said above, the person you spend it with.
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Old 29th Jul 2011, 05:54 PM   #2
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Re: My advice about being LGBT and Christian (very long)

Excellent, excellent write-up. I especially applaud the examination of terms used in the bible in their original language. Bravo!
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Old 29th Jul 2011, 06:08 PM   #3
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Re: My advice about being LGBT and Christian (very long)

In the OT, the sin of Sodom is defined in Ezekiel 16:49 as that Sodom was prideful, wealthy, and did not help the poor. In Jeremiah 23:14 it's general wickedness and adultery (which in the prophets is almost always a metaphor for idolatry).
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Old 29th Jul 2011, 06:28 PM   #4
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Re: My advice about being LGBT and Christian (very long)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Liam View Post
In the OT, the sin of Sodom is defined in Ezekiel 16:49 as that Sodom was prideful, wealthy, and did not help the poor. In Jeremiah 23:14 it's general wickedness and adultery (which in the prophets is almost always a metaphor for idolatry).
Hm. I didn't look at either of those in my research but more evidence is always good. Even if adultery wouldn't be a metaphor for idolatry (though fornication is), it only applies to infidelity within marriage. Which is kind of ironic about people who are strongly anti-gay referencing Sodom, because they're also anti-gay marriage (which means we can't practice adultery in the strictly biblical sense).
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Old 30th Jul 2011, 07:36 AM   #5
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Re: My advice about being LGBT and Christian (very long)

I completely love this! Fantastic job!
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Old 30th Jul 2011, 10:40 AM   #6
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Re: My advice about being LGBT and Christian (very long)

Outstanding! I am familiar with all of the passages and their rebuttals. Still, for me it's always great to hear them explained differently as it adds depth and meaning to them every time.

I know that even though the issue is resolved logically in my mind, my heart has a hard time following suit sometimes because it's hard to not be sway to popular opposition. I don't know if anyone reading this has been in a situation similar to mine, but if so, I hope I can help. I was raised in a Southern Baptist church and went to elementary at a largely Evangelical Christian school in a city known for being the second-most conservative in the US as well as having the most churches per capita in the US.

Contrary to what might be expected of this environment, homosexuality is not a huge point of crusade for most (I have run into a few before though), hate and intolerance aren't rampant (willful ignorance is), and education is not viewed suspiciously (I'm in a college town, so there's something of a conservative intelligentsia). There's just a strong and relatively quiet condemnation of homosexuality, which is harder in many ways than the shrill opposition Evangelicals have become known for. Rather than being divisive on the issue which at least gives LGBTs a side to stand with together, they just condemn you, make you feel all alone, like you're a broken human being and you'll never fit in anywhere.

This summer has been really hard on me as a Christian who has just acknowledged being gay, but advice and support like this, even if it is on the Internet, has really helped me. If you're in a similar situation, I just have to reiterate: it does get better. In a couple of weeks I'll be out on my own, living in one of the most accepting cities in the US. Fortunately for me, there are several accepting churches within walking distance from where I'll live, and I feel confident that all this strife within me will disappear once I'm there.

Thanks Twisty.
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Old 30th Jul 2011, 11:25 AM   #7
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Re: My advice about being LGBT and Christian (very long)

That was a really wonderful post. Though I am a Jewish theist, it still has great power insofar as our two religions share a similar concept of God. I have only recently come to accept being gay, and with this, I have begun to explore the idea of how it intersects with my faith, so this was a good primer. One of our traditions is the idea that the “sea of revelation is ongoing” that is to say that the Torah is open to interpretation and that new interpretations are equally valid. While God handed us these words they are our words now to do with them as we will. It is a misconception for instance to say that Orthodox Judaism is more Jewish than Reform Judaism. Rather they are two different interpretations each having Scholars that endorse them. I think this is a really important aspect of religion – thinking critically about it and about the sacred text because the Bible says a lot of things. Even in ancient times this was done. In Deuteronomy 21:18-21 we find that we instructed to stone the rebellious child. But rabbis parsing the text then developed an interpretation that made it nearly impossible for the child to be stoned. I think it is disheartening that so much of religion these days (my own included) is dominated by a clergy centered approach rather than personal study and interpretation. In the latter, there is a legitimate religious structure in which to make such an argument.

What inspired you to write this?
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Old 30th Jul 2011, 02:03 PM   #8
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Re: My advice about being LGBT and Christian (very long)

I read all of it and good job. I'm curious on the issue of transgender though... I mean He would make us to later pursue HRT and SRS? Seems... Off >_<.

Anything you might feel on the situation?
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Old 30th Jul 2011, 04:03 PM   #9
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Re: My advice about being LGBT and Christian (very long)

Quote:
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I read all of it and good job. I'm curious on the issue of transgender though... I mean He would make us to later pursue HRT and SRS? Seems... Off >_<.

Anything you might feel on the situation?
There are passages in Leviticus and elsewhere in the Pentateuch (the first five books of the Bible) that forbid mutilation, castration, or otherwise permanently altering the body. For Christians, none of that applies, and in Judaism any law can be broken to save a life (which given the high suicide rate of transgender people, might include SRS, consult a rabbi).

More importantly, though, God gives people horrible, horrible birth defects all the time, and we think nothing of altering the body to remove those defects (seriously, a Google image search of "birth defects" is not for the squeamish). Being trans* can be thought of as a birth defect, too, and I don't think there's any NT basis for not transitioning (though I admit it's not an area I've researched heavily.
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Old 30th Jul 2011, 04:57 PM   #10
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Re: My advice about being LGBT and Christian (very long)

Thank you so much for this post. It helps.
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Old 30th Jul 2011, 06:28 PM   #11
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Re: My advice about being LGBT and Christian (very long)

Great, great post.

The past year I've been on a quest to reconcile my Christianity with my sexuality. I grew up in a church where my pastor said that people living in a homosexual partnership were actively engaging in sin and could not be part of the congregation. So, from a young age, that's what I thought.

However, upon further study this year, and prayer, and soul searching, I have come to the conclusion that the greatest commandment, and the only "law" that Christians must now follow is that of "loving one another."

Marlowe, I like the concept of the "Sea of revelation is ongoing." I really think that is true today. Think of the concepts of slavery, and in early church times, circumcision. These were things that tore the church apart, and there are clear passages in the bible that support slavery, and for early Christians, that said you have to be circumcised. In both cases, cultural change and new revelations from God clearly changed popular status quo. We don't even think twice about slavery these days, and we don't think twice over whether or not you have to be circumcised to be a Christian (not sure what the Jewish take on this is). We also don't think twice about how women are now treated as opposed to how women were depicted in the bible.

Anyway, I think there is a clear change going on in the church in regards to homosexuality, and we are just in the midst of it. In my heart I cringe at the thought of the way many "Christians" condemn gay people, and the way that they are EXACTLY like the Pharisees in the Bible. It's quite shocking to me. I encourage people to watch "For The Bible Tells Me So" and "8: The Mormon Proposition" for an interesting look at the issue. I had no idea Desmond TuTu was an advocate for gay rights and supportive of it in Christianity. That was kind of big for me, since I greatly respect him and honestly believe he is of a balanced mind on this issue.

I could go on and on. But thanks for this post, and the refreshing angle you took.
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Old 30th Jul 2011, 11:30 PM   #12
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Re: My advice about being LGBT and Christian (very long)

Thank you so much guys and gals for all of your wonderful comments! I wrote this not to deal with any turmoil in my heart (though I'm a cross between pagan and Christian if there is such a thing, I've always believed God shakes his head in sadness at the way His words are used to persecute people) but to help any LGBT people and their friends/family that believe in God see past the cloud of hatred foisted upon us by those who have let fear and a lack of understanding settle within their hearts. If my words can help just one person (and from the sound of things, they have many times over) that's enough for me.
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Old 27th Aug 2011, 02:59 PM   #13
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Gay Christian =/= Celibate!

Most of you are probably familiar with the thread I wrote about being LGBT and Christian (which is now in the Resources thread, yay!)

Anyway, looking back, I wasn't satisfied with my analysis of Romans 1:21-31, so I took another look-in fact, I'm doing that right now. The passage is quite clear that, whether or not the 'unnatural' nature of the same-sex relations 'inflicted' upon those spoken of is because it is homosexual sex or heterosexuals engaging in homosexual sex, they were caused to do so because, and I quote, "although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to Him...exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like mortal man and birds and animals and reptiles. THEREFORE...God gave them over to shameful lusts."

Now based on that, I don't see why gay Christians are among those mentioned in this passage at all. They do not worship "images" in place of God, nor do they "neither [glorify] nor give thanks." I suppose someone could say that desiring a monogamous relationship with another guy, someone you can trust, love, and live with the rest of your life, is looking for someone to 'replace' God. But wait! I would love my boyfriend in such a resoundingly different way than the way I love God that there is no way God could be replaced, and I say this with absolute certainty. If you say this is because my partner is male, how are straight women allowed to marry? Sexually, they do everything with their husband that gay males do (more, even, when you think about it). So based on the 'logic' you're throwing at me, why aren't women only allowed to be 'baby factories?' (Well then again, that's all they were seen as for hundreds of years). Furthermore, if you're going to tell me that being in a relationship with another guy, even if it's not purely sexual, shoves God out of my life, that's, quite frankly, a pile of BS. David and Jonathan were two men that were not related who did have some form of a relationship (I'm not saying they had sex, there's no way to know that), be it platonic or something more (though the Bible did say they found "grace" in each other's eyes). And you know what, David is one of the most important figures in the Bible, especially because he's a direct ancestor of Jesus!

Ooh, one more thing. Paul made it abundantly clear that a very very small fraction of people were actually 'called' to celibacy. He recommended it, sure, but he didn't say EVERYONE had to be celibate. Unless you would tell a gay Christian to be celibate if they were straight, you have no business telling them to be celibate if they're gay. And you can't say that being gay automatically 'calls' you to celibacy because, well, you really are intruding on that person's relationship with God by telling them something they really can only learn from God, which is an action that was certainly NOT advocated by Jesus.

I don't know why I get so fired up over this. I guess it's because I really am trying to have both religion and sexuality in my life, hoping to one day find someone who has both in their life as well, and I know there are people who are being forced (either by others or themselves) to choose between the two (for those of you who find yourself in that situation, ). I do find it interesting that the same people at my school who would tell me I'm not allowed to be with another guy in every sense of the word, even if I don't publicly share the details of my relationship (which I never would; what goes on between two people in that manner should be private imo), are also the same ones who talk about finding girls/boys. I don't like to like to talk about guys I find attractive, just because it's private, so how am *I* being more 'lustful' and 'sexually impure ' than them?

One last thing: When I was in the closet, I did think that I would just have to be celibate if I came out, because, you know, it's not worth the discrimination, etc. to be in a relationship with another guy. But you know what? Then I would be alone. This is the only point here where I'm gonna use science to make my argument. If anyone's heard of Maslow's hierarchy of needs, both sex and sexual intimacy are seen as crucial needs intrinsic to every human being. So by declaring that, as a gay male, I am only fit for a life of celibacy, you are saying that I do not deserve to have these two needs met. So really, you think I am less human than you, that my life somehow deserves to be less fulfilling than yours, though I believe in God just as you do?

Ok. Rant over
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Old 27th Aug 2011, 03:48 PM   #14
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Re: My advice about being LGBT and Christian (very long)

This is a wonderfully researched and well written article! I personally am Jewish, but still was greatly interested in reading your views. As for being transgender, my rabbis have alway taught as mentioned above - body modification or mutilation isn't allowed, but any law may be broken to save a human life and given the mental health and high suicide rate, it is allowed.
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Old 27th Aug 2011, 04:10 PM   #15
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Re: My advice about being LGBT and Christian (very long)

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This is a wonderfully researched and well written article! I personally am Jewish, but still was greatly interested in reading your views. As for being transgender, my rabbis have alway taught as mentioned above - body modification or mutilation isn't allowed, but any law may be broken to save a human life and given the mental health and high suicide rate, it is allowed.
I remember coming across this somewhere, and it's absolutely true!

I just had another thing I wanted to add: I believe that God, whether He created us or not, gave every person a purpose. I think mine is to help, in some way, LGBT Christians. Though I am very passionate about LGBT rights (and rights in general) this is incredibly amplified when it comes to LGBT Christians. Maybe it's because we're (and I say we because, even though I'm agnostic, it's because I'm a faith Christian and not a religion Christian), but my heart goes out to people who, like me, love God with every fiber of their being, yet are told that being who they are, acting on how God made them, is a sin even if they do so in the same way they'd do if they were straight. After all, "there is neither Jew nor Greek, Slave nor Free, Male nor Female, For you are all one in Jesus Christ."
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Old 3rd Jan 2012, 12:35 PM   #16
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Re: My advice about being LGBT and Christian (very long)

Thank you so much. Many people are saying how great and informative this is, and it is, but this is exactly the proof I needed to rest the war ongoing in my heart and mind. I was so nervous as to if I was going to heaven or not, but I read all of this and everything was calmed. This kind of thread is exactly why I joined EmptyClosets, so thank you. I mean thank with the utmost sincerity.
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Old 3rd Jan 2012, 01:41 PM   #17
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Re: My advice about being LGBT and Christian (very long)

This was absolutely amazing. It was an excellent read-through and helped me sort some things out. Thanks.
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Old 11th Jan 2012, 10:36 PM   #18
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Re: My advice about being LGBT and Christian (very long)

Aww, thanks soo much for the wonderful comments. I'm really glad I was able to help everyone!

Also bumping this so people who need to read it can see it
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Old 12th Jan 2012, 12:50 PM   #19
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Re: My advice about being LGBT and Christian (very long)

I'm so glad this got bumped up! I'm currently facing this exact issue with a close friend, so this was very encouraging and helpful to read - a true blessing at just the right moment.

Your understanding of these scriptures and Biblical context is outstanding - above and beyond some experts who are many times older than you! You may feel a calling to reach out to LGBT Christians, but God's also given you a clear gift for written expression. Keep on using it, friend!

I'd like to add, for anyone interested in learning more about the whole gay/Christian thing - check out the Gay Christian Network's channel on YouTube. Their "Gay Christian Answers" series tackles quite well the different scriptures you've brought up here, along with many other questions about faith & sexuality.
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Old 12th Jan 2012, 12:56 PM   #20
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Re: My advice about being LGBT and Christian (very long)

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I'm so glad this got bumped up! I'm currently facing this exact issue with a close friend, so this was very encouraging and helpful to read - a true blessing at just the right moment.

Your understanding of these scriptures and Biblical context is outstanding - above and beyond some experts who are many times older than you! You may feel a calling to reach out to LGBT Christians, but God's also given you a clear gift for written expression. Keep on using it, friend!
It's actually kind of funny that you'd say this- I'm not a religious studies major or anything (I'm not even really a Christian). I just look at a passage, consider the time it was written and the basic message of Christianity- God loves us all, sent Jesus to save us, etc.- when making my analysis. So it's really humbling that you think I have a clear understanding. Thanks!

Also, whoever rated this thread 5 stars; thanks a bunch! I never thought when I joined EC that I'd touch even one person's life, let alone several.
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