Author Topic: Homosexuality Variously Considered By Some Calling Themselves Christian  (Read 3234 times)

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Offline anti_nietzsche

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Today it occured to me that we might be well adviced reading the New Testament in the way the early christians read the Old Testament. With that I mean, the early christians read the Old Testament as being prophetic about Jesus and Jesus' truths. They took verses about which the ancient jews thought entirely differently than these early christians thought. For example, the psalms which were seen as prayer books originally, now suddenly were prophecies about Jesus. This point of view allowed for a theology of ongoing revelation and that God could change our perception through His interventions in our lives, particularly through what Jesus did.

Now my thought is, perhaps we need to think of ourselves as being in a situation similar to the jews that lived in the time when the biblical texts were written first. We treat the bible as being written in stone and that we know what the writings mean, but isn't it possible that there are prophetic kernels in the New Testament that we are missing entirely?

I want to give an example ... the Psalms. David wrote this psalm where it says, "And the Lord said to my Lord". Did the ancient jews have any idea of God having a son? It doesn't seem so. I don't know about David personally as He must have had a vision or something that may have given him special knowledge. But the jews at large had no idea bout God having a son. And it was only Jesus who much later on said, hey guys, this is about the Son of David, and that Son of David is me.

I think that in the same way the New Testament might contain bits and pieces that we don't understand because we're caught in our own religious systems, much like the jews were in their own religious systems.

As an example of the New Testament, take Romans 1:18-32 .

Objectively speaking, this text doesn't make too much sense. The Romans and Greeks of Paul's time really didn't know Yahweh or Jesus very well, as far as I know. There were some educated people who may have read the bible and there were the curiosity seekers who shopped at the market of religions, but most people had no idea about God. Yet Paul speaks about how these people forsook Yahweh against better knowledge.

This is something which doesn't ring true at the first reading. It is also invalidated by what christian missionaries found in the americas - the american indians on Cuba didn't even have a word for God when the spanish talked with them. They really had no idea about God, and that's why we can't say they willfully rejected Him.

So what we must do is looking for another inspiration, and we need for that the Holy Spirit. Once we do that we are reminded to Apostle John's famous statement that "GOD IS LOVE". So everything that has to do with God, has to do with love in some way, which is also why Jesus remarked that the love commandments are the greatest commandments of the law. Now that is something where I think it applies to everyone of us. Really all of us have at some point forsaken love, and we have rejected doing the loving thing over the unloving thing. Voila, Paul makes sense again.

I hope I haven't confused anyone with this exercise. I wanted to show how the bible is incomplete if we just take the first understanding, the meaning of the letter and word, over the spiritual meaning. The bible is often as unclear to us as the OT prophecies about Jesus were to the jews that lived in the early times before Jesus had actually come and preached. That is also the reason why we have the Eternal Torment theology. People take parts of the NT at face value and do not seek for the spiritual meaning. And by this we forsake the faith progress that we should have been making, and faith progress is what I see in Paul who remarked that he would want the church to move forward and who wrote that he himself was stretching out himself to what lies ahead and forget what was behind.

There are so many implications of seeking the spiritual meaning of a verse. Let's take the part of Romans 1 again. If we take it at face value, what we have here is an assault on homosexuals who are lumped together with criminals and really ALL kinds of sinfulness is attributed to them. But if we remove the first concept of everyone having known God personally, and if we replace that with everyone having known what love is once, then we arrive at something else. We arrive at people having forsaken love, and that this forsaking love has led to all the sinfulness Paul writes about, not the homosexuality of some people.

I hope I was able to shed some light on these things for you. May we unveil many secrets of the bible so that the concept of Apokastasis returns to us and that we may live in the full truth of the God who is love and of His Shepherd King Jesus who is the inborn Son of our God and who shares in God's divinity.
« Last Edit: November 13, 2012, 12:48:08 PM by reFORMer »

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Re: Homosexuality Variously Considered By Some Calling Themselves Christian
« Reply #1 on: November 10, 2012, 09:38:58 PM »
Oh anti_nietzsche, my mind and heart ache for you.  May God shine His truth, His peace, His mercy, His grace, His love on your mind and in your heart.
« Last Edit: November 13, 2012, 12:51:54 PM by reFORMer »

Offline sheila

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Re: Homosexuality Variously Considered By Some Calling Themselves Christian
« Reply #2 on: November 10, 2012, 10:00:13 PM »
God never condemned one man loving another...He condemned LUST OF THE FLESH.....

   God made male and female..for He was seeking righteous offspring...even nature/natural creation

  bears wittness that righteous progency does not come from such un-natural acts.

   He says men are without excuse..for the creation bears wittness to it.

   Listen,I have no problem with any man bound in any such way...we all have things[nothing good that dwells

  in our flesh] we need delivered from.  the problem,as far as I can see is the trying to justify it in the name of love

   Love and lust are not the same spirit  Hebrews 13;4  Marriage should be honored by all,and the marriage bed

  kept pure,for God will judge the adulterer and all the sexually immoral

   Holy union brings forth righteous offspring..it is not barren.  Lust does not bear righteous offspring ,.

whether it be lust for power,greed money of all types....immorality...

  Look how David and Jonathan loved one another...but lust was not involved in it..Jonathan in love for

 David did not lust for the throne of Saul.   Look!!! David lay with Bathsheba/lust fruit of that union died

as did Uriah............

  people need to discern the spirit of LOVE from LUST.

   the spirit of love is the wife of your youth.....the spirit of lust is the spirit of Babylon...think back to your

childhood..before lust was stirred up in the flesh...think of your mindset then..of the joy of being alive

 and the whole creation of the earth was yours to behold..remeber a time when sex never entered your mind..

 or stealing a piece of candy was foreign to you..whenafter your bath you felt so clean and fresh

   Mt 18;2,3  He called a little child and had him stand among them,and He said 'I TELL YOU THE TRUTH

  UNLESS YOU CHANGE AND BECOME LIKE LITTLE CHILDREN,YOU WILL NEVER ENTER THE

 KINGDOM OF HEAVEN......

   WE SHALL ALL BE CHANGED......  AND WE ALL HAVE OUR THINGS THAT NEED BE CHANGED....

  AND HE SHALL DO IT
« Last Edit: November 13, 2012, 12:52:22 PM by reFORMer »

Offline ded2daworld

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Re: Homosexuality Variously Considered By Some Calling Themselves Christian
« Reply #3 on: November 10, 2012, 10:30:31 PM »
Anti -
I think what you are/were saying in a roundabout way is that the bluntness of the scriptures lumping homosexuality with other sinners bothers you. I think it's pretty clear. Thank God they (homosexuals) won't be sent to eternal torture like ET christians say they will be. I Doubt there will be sexuality in the next age so it won't matter then anyway. Jesus gave up having a sex life for us. Is it possible to give up a sex life for Jesus?
« Last Edit: November 13, 2012, 12:52:47 PM by reFORMer »
"Why do so many people think that the Bible is only inspired at certain points -  and that  THEY are inspired to pick out which points?"

Offline anti_nietzsche

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Re: Homosexuality Variously Considered By Some Calling Themselves Christian
« Reply #4 on: November 11, 2012, 06:31:45 PM »
Sheila, so what you are saying is that homosexuals have no love in them? That they only know lust? That is a very bold statement and it's not correct, just read the testimonies.

There is a way of practicing homosexuality that is lust driven - when it is promiscuous, when men simply decide to go with a guy when they had been married, even when it was a good marriage. That is wrong. But if a man during puberty or even earlier discovers how women don't interest him sexually, and therefor he can only love another man romantically, what now? This has nothing to do with sinful lusts but instead it is a normal expression of romantic interest including the sexual component.

Paul goes on and says that in these men and women he described there were all kinds of malice and wickedness. Again, this does in no way describe all homosexual people. To think so is a really grave error. But it was true of the roman patricians of Paul's day, when emperors like Caligula or Nero ruled and were known for terrible debasement and depravity. They really committed perversion, for example they used burning christians as torches for the imperial palace, Caligula married a horse and Nero emasculated a young boy so he could marry him in memory of the wife he had murdered just some years prior.

That IS perversion. But to say this applies to ALL homosexuals is just slander and error. I think that much is obvious.
« Last Edit: November 13, 2012, 12:53:16 PM by reFORMer »

Offline ded2daworld

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Re: Homosexuality Variously Considered By Some Calling Themselves Christian
« Reply #5 on: November 11, 2012, 06:50:13 PM »
Anti - what bothers you more, that some sinners are also homosexual?(as some sinners are also theives, murderers, etc)
or that scripture is scripture, it's inspired by God, he means what he says, and what he says about it is clear?
It would be nice to be able to justify whatever we want to do as God didn't REALLY mean that to apply to us today.
For example, there are many "straight" christians that re-interpret scripture to make pre-marital, nonmarital or extramarital OKAY for them in their particular situation. The bible is just as clear on this and people will always try to "justify" what the bible clearly says is wrong - when it is something they want to do.
Me, for example, the bible is clearly against overeating for any reason yet, I still find myself doing it on occaision.
« Last Edit: November 13, 2012, 12:53:50 PM by reFORMer »
"Why do so many people think that the Bible is only inspired at certain points -  and that  THEY are inspired to pick out which points?"

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Re: Homosexuality Variously Considered By Some Calling Themselves Christian
« Reply #6 on: November 11, 2012, 07:34:25 PM »
Anti_nietzsche, take a day or two and reflect on what ded2daworld posted... also reflect on Rom 14:21-23.... and always keep in mind, God alone knows our hearts..let Him be your comforter, your judge, your everything... if you're looking for any person to support your new insight into the NT scriptures, especially re:  God is love and homosexuality,  you will continue to be disappointed... 

« Last Edit: November 13, 2012, 12:54:24 PM by reFORMer »

Offline anti_nietzsche

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Re: Homosexuality Variously Considered By Some Calling Themselves Christian
« Reply #7 on: November 11, 2012, 08:06:33 PM »
I don't think of the bible as a text that was written by God Himself. Instead it is the writing of people who encountered God, and sometimes they got things right and sometimes I think they did not. Take, for example, Noah's Flood. Some believe it was a natural event that really took place, and some believe it was about a local flood that didn't occur on the whole world. That is really significant because we cannot use the bible as a plain textbook of God's will and neither is it the perfect history work of the human race - we must think for ourselves to a great extent, and again and again have to seek God's will. And we have a mind and we can reason, and that is how we find out that Paul isn't right when attributing all this evil he encountered in Rome to homosexuals. The bible is not God's word in that it would be the perfect communicator of God's will. For example, John writes that God is love. I believe this is true. But do other portions of the bible reflect the fact that God is love in the same way? Isn't God sometimes displayed like a bad Father when in fact we praise God for being a good Father? God exists, Jesus exists, but the bible is not the perfect communicator of all this ... the bible has a mystical and theological, deep relevancy, but we must look through it critically.
« Last Edit: November 13, 2012, 12:54:45 PM by reFORMer »

Offline jabcat

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Re: Homosexuality Variously Considered By Some Calling Themselves Christian
« Reply #8 on: November 11, 2012, 08:12:29 PM »
Anti - what bothers you more, that some sinners are also homosexual?(as some sinners are also theives, murderers, etc)
or that scripture is scripture, it's inspired by God, he means what he says, and what he says about it is clear?
It would be nice to be able to justify whatever we want to do as God didn't REALLY mean that to apply to us today.
For example, there are many "straight" christians that re-interpret scripture to make pre-marital, nonmarital or extramarital OKAY for them in their particular situation. The bible is just as clear on this and people will always try to "justify" what the bible clearly says is wrong - when it is something they want to do.
Me, for example, the bible is clearly against overeating for any reason yet, I still find myself doing it on occaision.


 :thumbsup:

-------------
I don't think of the bible as a text that was written by God Himself. ... critically.

**Expectation re: scriptural discussion on TM forum;

http://tentmaker.org/forum/rules-and-faq/moderatortm-expectations-regarding-the-scriptures/

"all scripture is inspired [God-breathed]...Holy men of old spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit" (2 Pet. 1).
« Last Edit: November 13, 2012, 12:55:10 PM by reFORMer »
Neither should there be vulgar speech, foolish talk, or coarse jesting--all of which are out of character--but rather thanksgiving.  Eph. 5:4  **  Saved 1John 3.2, Eph. 2:8, John 1:12 - Being saved 2Cor. 4:16 2Peter 3:18 - Will be saved 1Peter 1:5 Romans 8:23

Offline jabcat

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Re: Homosexuality Variously Considered By Some Calling Themselves Christian
« Reply #9 on: November 11, 2012, 08:20:17 PM »

There is a way of practicing homosexuality that is lust driven - when it is promiscuous, when men simply decide to go with a guy when they had been married, even when it was a good marriage. That is wrong. But if a man during puberty or even earlier discovers how women don't interest him sexually, and therefor he can only love another man romantically, what now? This has nothing to do with sinful lusts but instead it is a normal expression of romantic interest including the sexual component.


I personally don't see the scriptures saying that.  Maybe you didn't see it or maybe you just don't agree with it :), but  I posted exegesis in response to this in an earlier thread, what the words mean, what Paul says SIMPLY about men lying [having sex] with men, women being with women, etc.  It's not complicated, except yes, some have the desire - and we're asked as believers to look to the Lord to help us overcome sinful desires - of all types.  As ded said earlier, Jesus gave up his active sexuality for His lifetime - so did Paul, dedicating himself instead to the Lord.  I have my own besetting sins, and I'm often a sorry example of it, as I fall and fail.  I need the Lord's help, mercy, and grace - but we're asked to deny the flesh as well  [however individually necessary].  It's not easy..I guess it's "carrying our cross"?   But there are many sins of the flesh..even though we're clay and imperfect, what would be the purpose of us trying to excuse any of them?  All sin has consequences.  :2c:  :(
« Last Edit: November 13, 2012, 12:55:40 PM by reFORMer »
Neither should there be vulgar speech, foolish talk, or coarse jesting--all of which are out of character--but rather thanksgiving.  Eph. 5:4  **  Saved 1John 3.2, Eph. 2:8, John 1:12 - Being saved 2Cor. 4:16 2Peter 3:18 - Will be saved 1Peter 1:5 Romans 8:23

Offline anti_nietzsche

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Re: Homosexuality Variously Considered By Some Calling Themselves Christian
« Reply #10 on: November 11, 2012, 09:35:32 PM »
Yeah exactly, men spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit. People are frequently moved by something, and yet this doesn't guarantee that they are speaking the "full" truth. Being moved by God doesn't guarantee that I am saying the right thing. Or that I am saying something that will be as true in 1000 years as it is true now. For example, I might say Obama was a bad choice of a president, being moved by his pro-abortion agenda to say so. But in 10 years maybe people will say something else.

The theology of UR itself is not stated plainly in the bible. I am pretty sure that the Apostles themselves didn't quite subscribe to it fully. Just read Thessalonichans or the Epistle of Jude. I do believe in UR because I've always wanted to believe in a truly good and loving and inspiring God, and I take the cross as my starting point. But I'm not all that sure that ALL of scripture leads to UR.

That is what I wanted to get at in my original post here. Just like the ancient jews were probably not aware that David or someone else was prophesying something, we might not be aware that the bible is prophesying, and we don't know what the words actually mean. The jews had no idea that the Messiah would be more than just an ordinary human, that He would be the actual and concrete inborn Son of God. Likewise we may be deceived about scripture when we take something in it as meaning something when in fact in the Holy Spirit it means something else entirely.

And the apostles were not gods that they became infallible. Jesus took ordinary people as disciples. They were pure because they followed Jesus and didn't care about martyrdom, and because they honestly spread the faith and loved everyone. But treating them as infallible doesn't seem right.

The bible is a mystical book though and that's why I also use it in a mystical way, quoting certain bible verses to me when I am feeling bad or mistrusting or assaulted somehow. But Jesus really is more than the bible, and we must seek Him personally. Just reading through Romans isn't enough ... go outside, make a pilgrimage, pray, fast, sing, and most of all engage yourself fully in God. He is our Father, He is our Savior, He is pure love.

I'm not sure I suffice TM standards with this. I guess we will have to see, maybe I need to look for another board somewhere else.
« Last Edit: November 13, 2012, 12:56:21 PM by reFORMer »

Offline ded2daworld

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Re: Homosexuality Variously Considered By Some Calling Themselves Christian
« Reply #11 on: November 12, 2012, 03:29:10 AM »
Anti-
Please read the quote that is at the bott0om of all my posts.
If we don't subscribe to the idea that God got said what he wanted said and how he wanted it written and that God doesn't change and men will always be sinful and try to justify their sins... then we are grasping at the wind of everchanging doctrine and opinion. What a waste of time and energy to discuss any persons opinion that isn't based on the word of God.
If you are looking for a discussion forum that will agree with you and say "let's reinterpret scripture to suit us so we can do what we want"... then you're right, perhaps you should look for a board that will tell you what you want to hear rather than asking you to think.
« Last Edit: November 13, 2012, 12:56:55 PM by reFORMer »
"Why do so many people think that the Bible is only inspired at certain points -  and that  THEY are inspired to pick out which points?"

Offline anti_nietzsche

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Re: Homosexuality Variously Considered By Some Calling Themselves Christian
« Reply #12 on: November 12, 2012, 04:27:49 PM »
Ded, oh I am very much doing my own thinking. It's just that the bible operates on different levels, and it's not as if it were a simple textbook that would give us a unified and plain message about the truth. Instead the Old Testament is a collection of different jewish stories, and the New Testament is a collection of different christian stories. Every book of the NT has a particular human author, it's never signed with Jesus' name. That's why we are well adviced to take these biblical books and to keep in mind that fallible people were their authors. And these people sometimes made mistakes and said things that were not entirely true. About the OT, just consider the scientific evidence - most likely there hasn't been a global flood, but there is ample evidence for a local flood. And about the NT, take what Paul writes about the role of women in the church - things that stem more from Paul's own convictions than from what Jesus Himself wanted. Same goes for slavery - the bible doesn't speak about it inerrantly, because the people who appear in these texts were not inerrant, including Apostle Paul. What we can maintain is that these people had profound encounters with God and that they were honest. Everything they said has a point and is worth considering. But they can make mistakes and that's what we have to find out. What good is it if we live like the ancient greeks and tell afro-american christians that slavery was a good idea? What good is it if we deny faithful women a career as a pastor? What good is it if we still carry out capital punishment like the early hebrews did? Is there any sense in such a doing? We believe that men are fallible and sinful, so there is no reason not to suspect fallibility and sin in the characters of the bible. They often knew God well, but I really think that they were also baffled by the mysteries of God and didn't understand everything perfectly either. I think that much is pretty sure, and Paul himself actually admits it by saying he only knew in part and as if through a dark mirror.
« Last Edit: November 13, 2012, 12:57:25 PM by reFORMer »

Offline anti_nietzsche

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Re: Homosexuality Variously Considered By Some Calling Themselves Christian
« Reply #13 on: November 12, 2012, 04:44:49 PM »
Jabcat, anytime the bible speaks about sins of the flesh, it is not talking about homosexuality. There isn't any example of a "repentant homosexual" in the bible. You know how it is if you talk with people, homosexuals are shunned and made fun of and ridiculed. They are part of the needy for whom Jesus actually has a special tenderness - they are part of the "scum of the world" that is supposed to bring to nothing that which is something in the world. It's the same with alcoholics, junkies, punks, with the poor and the marginalized, with disableds and such.

If you look through things clearly and follow every argument to its logical end, then homosexuality is not an evil but just another variant and kind of human sexuality. I mean, you could also take the bible and says a heterosexual couple shouldn't buy french lingerie because that would lead to lust sex as opposed to child-making agape sex or whatever you imagine. The ancient jews had no lingerie. But we have and there's nothing wrong with it.

Jesus argued that lawfulness and righteous life must be based on the love for God and a love for my neighbor like I love myself. So what is it, is a homosexual my neighbor? Yes, he is. So I must love him like myself. And in that imagining myself in the homosexual's shoes I don't find something evil but just another human trying to get by and finding romance in the way he can find it. Furthermore we were never expected as christians to keep the whole of the law, in fact we are supposed to arrive at a better righteousness than the pharisees who based everything on the law. Now what is a better righteousness? According to Jesus, it must be gained through love. Can homosexuals love God and their neighbor like themselves? Yes they can, and that also when they have a same sex partner.

We don't need to have the same morality as Apostle Paul. We need to imitate Jesus, not Paul, and we follow Jesus, not Paul. So we can safely throw out what Paul writes when He's erring about God's will or when he is speaking from personal prejudice and not from objective fact.

It's impossible that Paul and the other writers of the bible were all fully righteous and knew absolutely everything and that there is no room for progress in christianity. That would be a great deception as it would dramatically hinder and confuse us about living in the truth and making progress in that.
« Last Edit: November 13, 2012, 12:57:57 PM by reFORMer »

Offline ded2daworld

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Re: Homosexuality Variously Considered By Some Calling Themselves Christian
« Reply #14 on: November 12, 2012, 05:33:26 PM »
Well anti-
like I mentioned before, if you're going to say where the Bible is right and where it is wrong, it makes the bible irrelevant because it cannot be trusted. If the bible can't be trusted, the word of man certainly can't be trusted. As for your mistaken idea that real science disagrees with the bible, please check out this website with an open mind.
http://scienceagainstevolution.info/index.shtml
It is a totally non-religious website(in the sense that there is no mention of God or the Bible) but is hosted by an electrical engineer that shows scientifically the likelyhood of a young earth, a global flood, the impossibility of evolution. In short, science  corroborates the what the Bible says. (The website never mentions the bible as I said but when it disproves evolution, shows the probability of a young earth, and the overwhelming evidence of a global flood, you get the point.
However, if your mind is made up, which I believe it is, you won't openly investigate. Once a person has decided to "be good" in their own eyes yet still sin according to what the bible says, they must, to stay sane, discount the accuracy of the Bible to allow them to do what they want to do. (sin)
« Last Edit: November 13, 2012, 12:58:28 PM by reFORMer »
"Why do so many people think that the Bible is only inspired at certain points -  and that  THEY are inspired to pick out which points?"

Offline sheila

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Re: Homosexuality Variously Considered By Some Calling Themselves Christian
« Reply #15 on: November 12, 2012, 05:56:44 PM »
I believe it is you who is speaking from personal prejudice.  Lev 18;22  and 28 and if you defile the land

  it will vomit you out.  see the Better Land series And J.esus Christ letters to the seven churches

  and His mind on immorality...also JEZEBELS SPIRIT that MISLEADS AND TEACHES SEXUAL IMMORALITY..

  No-one is ever tempted of God.

   there is a great movement in chrisendom to install and accept as bishops elders etc homosexuality

 as an 'alternative' lifestyle.

   I'm not buying it..anti

   p.s. homosexual desires come from an evil contrast spirit..and when Jesus Christseperates it from

  a man or woman...those urges are no more...He Will spew them out of His mouth..from His body[Christ]

  of men raised up in the image of Christ.   Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline.So be earnest

 and repent
« Last Edit: November 13, 2012, 12:58:54 PM by reFORMer »

Offline eaglesway

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Re: Homosexuality Variously Considered By Some Calling Themselves Christian
« Reply #16 on: November 12, 2012, 06:51:58 PM »
Apokastatsis)(Acts 3:21 and anakaphalaomai(Ephesians 1:11) still involve fire and purification and repentance, on this side of the veil for sure, and perhaps on the other side as well. The loss incurred to those who refuse to seek deliverance from the sins of the flesh is not so well defined in its particulars- but it is substantial and to be avoided by the wise if we believe the testimony of Jesus., While I agree that many homosexuals are as the punks and druggies and other outcasts spoken of- their deliverance one and all is in Jesus, and He came to save us from our sins, not save us in our sins.

Only He knows who is caught, trapped in bondage to some particular sin, and who is loving that sin and having great pleasure from it. In the former case He can deliver the outcast and bring him/her into the house of prayer for all people. In the latter case there is kolassis/correction from the hand of the Lord.
« Last Edit: November 13, 2012, 12:59:29 PM by reFORMer »
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Offline lomarah

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Re: Homosexuality Variously Considered By Some Calling Themselves Christian
« Reply #17 on: November 12, 2012, 06:57:45 PM »
Quote
He came to save us from our sins, not save us in our sins.

YEESSSSSSSS brother AMEN and HALLELUJAH!!!

(Just want to make a little note that this has nothing to do with me "condemning" homosexuals or anyone at all, I have a love for all people and desire the freedom for all.  :HeartThrob:)
« Last Edit: November 13, 2012, 12:59:58 PM by reFORMer »
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Offline anti_nietzsche

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Re: Homosexuality Variously Considered By Some Calling Themselves Christian
« Reply #18 on: November 13, 2012, 11:20:26 AM »
Ded, well humans must always check everything and decide for themselves if something is true or not. That's called the exercise of reason and learning. People use reason anytime, and there's no point leaving behind reason when reading the bible. You said the bible isn't trustworthy if we can't treat it as an absolutely inerrant source. That's not true. Nothing in this world is inerrant, we must put everything to the test. The bible survives most honest tests, but not all of it. About Noah's Flood for example, it would have had to leave behind evidence in the geological strata in the Earth. And the evidence would have to be everywhere as the Flood was said to occur globally. But this evidence simply isn't there, there are no global sedimentary strata. And where would all the water go? And from where did it come? The Earth is a very complex ecosystem and a Global Flood would have wrecked everything. And how could Noah really get all the animals into the Arc, animals from the Americas, Australia, Africa, from the other islands, etc?

What I think instead is that what really happened was that God sent a spirit flood. Mankind ceased their lawlessness and began instituting laws and courts of justice. God is not only the God of the jews but of everyone else as well. The jewish scriptures are not meticulous historical annals and chronicles. They are often written in mythological language. God's inspiration has been there in these writings, but we don't understand this inspiration by going by the letter, we instead meet the spirit in which they were written, the symbolical and metaphorical contents of the writings.

There is no need to see scripture like the 10 commandments that God wrote Himself on the famous Stone Tablets. The bible is the most important spiritual book that we have, and much of it we can take at face value. But not all of it. We're called to embark on a quest for truth. We can do that.
« Last Edit: November 13, 2012, 01:00:30 PM by reFORMer »

Offline anti_nietzsche

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Re: Homosexuality Variously Considered By Some Calling Themselves Christian
« Reply #19 on: November 13, 2012, 11:33:49 AM »
About homosexuality, well it was prohibited in the law of Moses, but the church didn't keep all of these laws after Christ came. For example, we eat bacon now, we may eat blood sausage, we allow people with missing testicles into our congregations, we wear clothing made of mixed fibres, we eat shellfish now, etc. It's not a problem. We have the capability to take these ancient jewish laws and to examine whether they are still binding or not. The 10 commandments, for example, we can easily comprehend as good and proper, we cannot conceive of a society that would be good and fair if people murdered each other, stole from each other, lied to each other and took away each other's spouse. But the prohibition of homosexuality is another story. A homosexual is not doing something evil if he or she romantically loves another he or she, provided that everything is consensual.

It's always been like that that homosexuals were not received well by "normal" people. Everyone found them yucky and loathable. You know the schoolyard jokes, and how many gays were persecuted by others, sometimes hunted through the village. How parents threw them out of the house and how in fact they got punished by the city guards and others, everyone making fun of them and mocking them.

This isn't the lustful promiscuity that Paul speaks about. What Paul spoke about were excesses, people going after strange flesh, meaning people left behind their wives and went after people of the same gender not because of love but because of mere lust for a new sexual kick and thrill. This is not what normal homosexuals experience. They just never had an interest in some of the other sex. They can only connect sexually with someone of the same sex. Why that is, is unclear, science doesn't fully understand it. But a human usually is an eccentric creature. I am a rather earnest person but still I love to play computer roleplaying games. My dad was intelligent but listened to mindless and cheap and forged german folklore music. My mother is a very loving and kind woman but she insists she must buy my clothing because she thinks I can't manage that. Life is full of such oddities, and homosexuality is just one more variant of that. Don't judge, don't mistreat, don't abuse and give away people to be abused, and most of all: DISCERN!
« Last Edit: November 13, 2012, 01:01:03 PM by reFORMer »

Offline ded2daworld

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Re: Homosexuality Variously Considered By Some Calling Themselves Christian
« Reply #20 on: November 13, 2012, 02:00:27 PM »
Anti - based on your assumptions, a man that loved the 14 year old little girl next door, his dog, horse or sheep would all qualify as "not violating the ten commandments" simply because that kind of stuff was forbidden in the OLD testament.
Oh wait, come to think of it the 14 year old wasn't prohibited. So if you have a 13-14-15 year old daughter it would be perfectly fine with you if she was having sex with a 50 year old man because it wasn't lust but love. Gimme a break.

Also, we as christians don't mistreat, don't abuse, don't allow others to be abused and use discernment to love the homosexual but not the sin of homosexuality. Just as we would love the adulterer, theif, or murderer but not the sin of these things.
By telling us to discern, you actually mean to see things the way you do and compromise on what the bible clearly states.
Not gonna happen.
"Why do so many people think that the Bible is only inspired at certain points -  and that  THEY are inspired to pick out which points?"

Offline reFORMer

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Re: Homosexuality Variously Considered By Some Calling Themselves Christian
« Reply #21 on: November 14, 2012, 07:58:25 AM »
As sure as gravitation is a law of God, so "You shall not kill" is His moral law.  For the convenience of our own judicial system there are various categories from which one can be charged with illegal killing.  To say that only 1st Degree Murder is the crime that violates the commandment against killing would be a lie.

Similarly, the references in the Bible that refer to homosexuality are not invalidated by being about some special subset of the general category.  It is more than a little obvious when the attempt is made to discredit all Biblical references to homosexuality by claiming each refers to something else when it is only that various perspectives are in view and special facets are under consideration.  Speaking of those who practice and approve of homosexuality, the following statement appears in scripture, "Alleging themselves to be wise, they are made stupid." (Romans 122, Concordant Literal)  The reasoning that every reference to homosexuality in the Bible is really about something else certainly fulfills that scripture in a very literal way and does show something of just how stupid we can be.
« Last Edit: November 14, 2012, 09:08:44 AM by reFORMer »
I went to church; but, the Church wasn't on the program!  JESUS WANTS HIS BODY BACK!!  MEET WITHOUT HUMAN HEADSHIP!!!

Offline reFORMer

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Re: Homosexuality Variously Considered By Some Calling Themselves Christian
« Reply #22 on: November 16, 2012, 10:35:53 AM »
"Proofs" by way of a point of view of scripture that is unwarranted and degraded, that lacks learning the other side of the topic or the defense of scripture are not really proof.  Beyond that, where are the positive and affirming scriptures for homosexual behavior? 

Comparing pork consumption with a homosexual lifestyle disregards the categories of scripture.  The ritual laws, the temple worship, some things for national law, these may not apply to us, unless for their symbology.  But the moral law remains.  This may be seen by comparing the Greek portion of scripture with the Hebrew.

I don't think stoning is an appropriate Christian response to homosexuals, even less so for our present society.  (I'm not going into detail about those passages in the Torah now.)  But more -- the Christians faith should be that God can completely transform anybody!  Waiting and working for that to happen is more our way.  We are not in the Mosaic Covenant.  God still hates divorce, but we're not stoning adulterers.  God hates homosexual lifestyles too.  So we seek, not approval, but transformation.  We are to love these people which many of us once were.  In fact, our love is to be shown to all.

If I love you and find you are dying with cancer I don't try to talk you out of going to a surgeon who can save your life.  Yet for that, for admitting the cancer is evil, that is, homosexual acts are sinful, is considered by some to be hate speech.  Even to speak of loving the sinner is hateful because it is not affirming the sin.

We understand Jesus saying love is what we are to have toward even toward our enemies goes beyond the laws of Moses.  He also says if we don't surpass the righteousness of the Pharisees we don't inherit the kingdom of God.  It is precisely in this matter of love where we are to surpass their righteousness.
« Last Edit: November 16, 2012, 10:56:30 AM by reFORMer »
I went to church; but, the Church wasn't on the program!  JESUS WANTS HIS BODY BACK!!  MEET WITHOUT HUMAN HEADSHIP!!!

Offline anti_nietzsche

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Re: Homosexuality Variously Considered By Some Calling Themselves Christian
« Reply #23 on: November 16, 2012, 02:01:40 PM »
Well I don't agree with that. I just have a different exegesis than you in this matter. Plus, while most of the moral commandments in the law can be reasoned and it clearly shows how they make sense in creating a working social life, this does not apply for homosexuality. Paul remarked how love fulfills the law because it does not do harm. So one prime purpose of the law is to prevent harm, and that is again something that I see in the 10 commandments and in the love commandments. But in the commandment against homosexuality, there is no harm being prevented.

You speak about categories, and that makes sense, but let me show you that your logic still doesn't apply universally. I mean, we have a commandment in the mosaic code that in a congregation, those are not allowed to enter who have crushed testicles. Is this moral law? Ceremonial law? Whatever it is, we don't keep this law any longer and welcome everyone into the church, no matter of his diseases or ailments, whatever.

I think in the light of Jesus' love, in the light of virtue and in the light of the human dignity that we believe in, it is wrong to disallow someone in the church. I think that much is clear. And that is why I think the church decided to abandon this commandment in the mosaic code, although I am not aware it did this on a prophetic command of God, like it was the case with dietary law where we could say Peter had a vision from God which settled the matter.

I think the case with homosexuality is the same. It does not hurt anybody and like the testicle law it is now irrelevant in sofar as the reasons for disallowing someone from the congregation are not there anymore. With that I mean, the testicle law probably had its place in Israel, God needed warriors, God ruled harshly sometimes, and the people of that time were primitive compared to us, there were no human rights back then and no belief in a universal human dignity. People with crushed testicles were seen as unmanly, and in a congregation they would be ridiculed and made fun of and laughed at. It's similar to modern schoolyards where gays and lesbians are constantly ridiculed and made fun of, something that is very painful for them. So God simply decided to keep people with crushed testicles in their families and out of the congregation, and so they had this commandment.

But now in our age this commandment has become pointless, and in the light of human dignity and the revelation of Christ it would actually be sin to forbid persons like this in the congregations of christians. And again, I think it's the same with homosexuality, in the light of how we christians are supposed to treat each other we are not supposed to oust homosexuals, and we don't have to invent another law against them. To be a homosexual doesn't violate our human dignity and in fact if we suppress them and accuse them of something that is not relevant anymore, we actually sin against their human dignity.

As a final note though, the reason why people speak against homosexuality is probably because it is not really natural. A man has a penis, a woman has a vagina, and physically that belongs together. So there is some sense in considering homosexuality a disorder. But this disorder does not cut them off from God's love and they are still healthy insofar as they love their neighbor and don't cause harm. And fact is we have a multitude of disorders in this world, for example depression is a disorder too because naturally we're not supposed to be depressed, no animal is depressed if it is healthy. But still a depression is not sin for a christian and he is free to treat it like he wishes, including writing dark poetry or something. Likewise I think a homosexual is free to treat his disorder like he wishes, he is not violating a moral law with it. Morality is about distinct good and evil, about the prevention of harm, and homosexuality does no harm.

But I will add that this is my opinion, I haven't had God speaking about that to me personally. I just think there are things, some of them in the bible itself, that disallow continuing to consider homosexuality as a sin. It's like with the issue of slavery, it's a matter of progress and history. Paul argued how sin is that which is not from faith, and as it is abundantly clear, there are gay christians who have a relationship with Jesus and who do live in the light with their brother without hatred, and that's what matters. After all a pretty high percentage of gays couldn't shake their homosexuality even if they wanted to, as they cannot force themselves to bond with women, and it would be wrong for them to do so anyway because a truly heterosexual woman would really suffer in such a marriage.

I suppose you are thinking, why do you make it so complicated, why do you not simply go by a simpler exegesis, and to that I must say that this is the wrong way of going into scripture anyway. The jews didn't do that with the mosaic code either, the law demanded eye for an eye, but the jewish men of spirit quickly concluded that what was better in God's sight than the principle of avenging mutilation, was to demand a financial compensation. I think that much of the law is didactic really, and if society works right and love is people's principle and God is honored and sought and beseeched in prayer, then the harsh penalties that the law proscribed were often unnecessary to be carried out. And to close this text, every really serious sin has been dealt with in the prophetic books of the bible, God was showing what is really wrong and what brings people away from him. And never once do the prophetic books deal with homosexuality, it's always other things.

Offline ded2daworld

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Re: Homosexuality Variously Considered By Some Calling Themselves Christian
« Reply #24 on: November 16, 2012, 02:23:39 PM »
I'm 100% with reformer on this one.
Anti - you're missing the whole point. You say that homosexuality isn't harmful but is. Read the statistics. It is similar to non marital sex (actually what it is) and statistics also show non-marital sex, while appearing to be OK does damage. Those that believe sin is harmful, are not surprised when scientists confirm that "gays" are anything but. Just like some straights, they cover up their inner misery and put on a big act. You should talk to some Gays that have come out of the lifestyle and hear why they left. By the way, Homosexuals that legally marry are just as likely to get cheated on and/or divorce as "straights" "Straights include true God lovers yes but the true God lovers divorce rate is way less than half that of others.
And reformer made the point that not only is homosexuality condemned in both the old and the new testaments, but there is nothing positive like Paul saying, In a vision, the Lord, who changes not, said to me that "homosexuality is no longer an abomination to him - as long as the couple truly love one another"
"Why do so many people think that the Bible is only inspired at certain points -  and that  THEY are inspired to pick out which points?"