Six days ago, I posted I’m Christian, unless you’re gay. The response has been overwhelming (to say the least). Nearly half a million people have already read it. Nearly 2,000 comments have come in. It’s seen the greatest first-week traffic of any post I’ve ever shared here on SDL.
As I hit the “publish” button last Monday evening, I honestly feared it would be the end of Single Dad Laughing. I don’t know why. I guess it’s just really scary to attempt to write something that, if done incorrectly, could anger not just one part of the population but nearly every part of the population. That post covers some very hot ground. I think you’d agree.
But I also said in the beginning of that post that, in order to finally write it and publish it, I had to care more about the message than I did about any potential backlash. That was more of a pep talk I was giving myself in order to keep from hitting the “trash” link on yet another draft of it.
Anyway, I’ve read just about every single comment that has come through and I won’t lie… I was brought to tears several times by some of the things that were shared. I don’t think anybody could read through the comments without being at least somewhat changed. But what you all didn’t get to see were the hundreds of personal emails that I received in the wake of the post
Some were horrific. They testified of the need for the message beyond anything that I ever read in the comments. A couple were threatening and attacking. Others guaranteed that my passage to hell was assured. Thankfully, the vast majority were kind and encouraging and full of hope.
There have also been a handful that have been so powerful that they momentarily flipped my world upside down. There have been a handful that have melted me down into a puddle of emotion, unable to speak for fear I’d lose whatever was causing my heart to pound. Some of these were powerful in their beauty. Others in their ugliness.
I tried to read some of these aloud to the woman I’ve recently started dating. I couldn’t finish most of them. I couldn’t even start others.
I’ll be sharing a couple of less than beautiful responses first, and I only do so because I believe they will make the others that much more powerful. It’s the beautiful responses that are most important, and I want to share with you those responses that meant more than the world to me when I received them. To some degree, they’ve changed the very definition of who I am. They made me realize that no matter how anybody responds to this post, it’s already been worth it. I’ve shared two of these on the Facebook wall with you already, so forgive me for those that some of you might have seen already.
Each response on this post will be on its own page, mostly so that you can share links to individual responses on Facebook and Twitter if you like. The first two are among the responses I received that I feel prove the need for this message. The last five prove the power of living the message. The power of giving. And, the power of love even when we disagree with one another.
At the end of this post I have a challenge for you. I seriously hope you take me up on it.
I also hope you’ll share this post. I hope you’ll encourage everybody you know to come read it. These responses are a hundred times more powerful than anything I could ever write, I promise you that. You see, my original post was made of words and ideas. Hope. Encouragement. Love. What you will read today are all real-life examples of those words and ideas.
I realize that a lot of you received your own dose of backlash on the links you posted to the original post. Reposting it took serious guts for many of you. I hope the small amount of backlash you saw didn’t scare you from sharing the message but instead enforced the need for you to share the message all the more. That’s what it’s done for me, at least.
More than anything, I hope that these messages serve as all the proof you need that sometimes posting a link does a whole lot more than just putting text in front of a person’s face. Sometimes leaving a comment does a whole lot more than just saying what you want to say. Sometimes lives are changed. Sometimes families are changed. Sometimes communities are changed. And ultimately, sometimes, the world.
Click on page 2 below to read the first response.
Jesus was the son of God. He was to be considered the image of God. He showed love, compassion, and kindness to everyone he met. He helped people whom we considered sinners. My favorite scripture from the bible is, "He without sin among you, let him cast the first stone" (John 8:7). No one is perfect and no one deserves to be ridiculed for something they cannot change about themselves nor about expressing ones thoughts and opinions. It takes a lot of courage to stand up in society and be openly gay/bisexual/transgender. Ones choice in religious preference, sexual preference, cultural preference, etc., should ever determine the worthiness of getting to know an individual for whom they are. Our differences are what make us all unique individuals. People don't have to like other individuals choices but at least respect the differences in opinion. You don't have to accept them, just respect them This is when the golden rule and scriptures in Matthew 7:12 and Luke 6:31 becomes beneficial, "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you". As Just Me quoted, "A new commandment I give to you: Love one another as I have loved you" (John 13:34 & John 15:12). The hatred shown toward "sinners" does not reflect the image of God Christians have read and seen through Jesus time and time again.
Dan, keep up the good work and continue to change individuals lives. You may not be able to change the entire world, but you are able to make a difference within some lives. That is special and spectacular all in itself. Your challenge is working through the negativity about being gay and your thoughts and opinions on your experiences. Others face criticism and negativity about other things such as religious preference. Through your words you give others the strength to take one day at a time and "turn the other cheek" through each and every day.
I was raised Christian. Due to the focus on the negative interpretations of the bible, I began to search down other religious paths. I have spent years afraid to be truthful and honest with my mom whom is Christian. I feared I too would be disowned. Through reading your blog, I'm Christian, Unless You're Gay I found peace of mind and the courage I needed to be open, honest, and above all.... To be myself... Thank you for all you do and know you are cherished forever and always.
It's always astonished me that this is even an issue. I grew up in a church that accepts everyone the way they are. We like to say "we don't care"- we don't care your race, your sexual preferences, your socioeconomic class... None of that. So having grown up in such a loving accepting environment I was shocked the first time I found out that there are "Christians" out there who really hate anything LGBTQIA. It's absolutely ridiculous. To all those "Christians" who will quote Leviticus, I'd like to point out John 13:34 AND John 15:12 (SO important Jesus said it TWICE) "a NEW commandment I give to you: love one another as I have loved you." I'll never understand why anyone thinks its any of their business concerning other people's sexual preferences. As a side note, I was reading the first response, which was a negative one and the spelling and grammatical errors that the person who wrote that made seriously damage his/her credibility. Even if you forgive the grammar and some typos, God should be capitalized, something they fail to do through the duration of that email, but that's me being nit-picky.
The point being, thank you for posting this because people need to hear it I think.
Thank you for these, and for your original article. It's sometimes hard to remember that my fellow Christians are not all driven by hate...
Thank you for posting both the negative and the positive responses. I think that it is important to show both sides. That being said, I couldn't even read the negative ones. Hate does not come naturally or easily to me. I am in general a very caring and level headed person and I try to avoid that kind of poison in my life. The sheer indignation and anger that I start to feel when reading letters of people using religion and "known" facts to hide behind as they hurl their hatred is quite overwhelming. The following positive reactions you posted made me tear up.
I know you have probably had many people thank you for writing this article and posting the reactions but let me add my voice to the multitude. I thank you for not only writing this article but for also being the kind of father who will always love and cherish his son, no matter what. Being the son of a pair of amazing and loving parents, I know exactly the kind of impact that it can have on you. The fact that your article is waking up other parents and helping them to become loving and accepting is going to have a trickle down effect for a really long time. The love of a parent or parental figure is so important in life, not just when you are growing up.
Keep up the good work and despite the fact I won't be reading them, keep posting the hater's comments. When you have someone spewing such hate and vitriol it allows those sitting on the fence to see what an ugly thing hatred and bigotry can be. This in turn can push them off the fence.
I would like for you to read Leviticus 20 completely and pay special attention to verse 13. In this verse is it stated that a man should not lay with a man as a man would do with a woman. Both of them have done what is detestable. They are to be put to death, their blood will be on their own heads.
That is what God says about homosexuality, it is a sin, it's not a good thing. Also you can't be Christian and gay, you just can't because you then deny that part of the bible.
Back in that time the Leviticus were the ones having to keep a hand in these rules and actually punish the ones who were commiting a sin. Nowadays we don't have these people anymore because Jesus sacrificed himself and said: Go and do not Sin. We will all be judged infront of God one day and God almighty will be the one who will ask us: My son told you not to sin, why have you denied that request and why did you do it? What will your answer ben then? What will the answer of a Gay Christian be then? Knowing it is a Sin in God's eyes.
As it is stated in Leviticus: Laying with another Man, having sex with an animal or with your mother/sister/daughter-in-law it's a Sin. These rules were not made for nothing, they were made to be followed and to be a good Christian. Now you won't hear me say I do not Sin, I do Sin and if I do I beg God to forgive me for I have sinned.
One last thing: Could anyone please explain to me why we have gays and lesbians in the western countries and not in the 3rd world countries? Don't see those rambo bush people being gay now do you?
Thank you so much for all the posts on this topic. I come from a similar christian background to you (not Mormon) however for years I have struggled to understand the conflicting messages within the Christian community. Being a strong minded and fiercely independent woman I have faced many of my own battles with the church's ideals of how I 'should be and behave', my future was always limited and set in a very narrow path I don't believe is what God has intended for me at all. He has made us exactly who we are for a reason!
Although I do still consider myself a christian I have spent years coming to terms with what I believe and why. I love God and I love his people (however long it may take at times!). I cannot fathom how it would be acceptable in any religion or culture to treat someone differently because of their sexual preference, appearance, race etc etc.
There is a lot of negativity toward all different sects however I agree that your message on love is the true core of all of these religions and has somehow been lost.
Thank you again for raising awareness and being a tool to reach out to the outcasts, the people in hiding or struggling with their own situations.
This was really refreshing and I really appreciate and enjoyed reading it. I look forward to more!
This has been beautiful and incredible--both the original post and the current one. I have become really cynical about religious people in general because so many of them are the kind of awful people who promote hate over love and violence over kindness. I'm still an atheist because I still believe that belief in the supernatural doesn't make sense, but I'm always happy to read about religious folks or theists who can promote love and kindness and friendship. The world is a better place because of you and because of all the brave people on pages 4-8. I love you.
Okay, since the beginning of my comment seems to get all the attention, let me rephrase it:
I don't think Christians should be gay. Simply because the bible tells us that men having sex with men and women with women is disgusting to God. And since God has always been the same, still is the same and in all eternity is going to be the same as always (Hebrews 13) it still is disgusting to Him.
But anyway, what you were supposed to get is: If people are gay (whether they choose to or not) doesn't matter to me. I do love everybody as a person no matter in what way they sin. I sin, too. And my comment wasn't meant to offend anybody. Sorry it did. It's just a problem I've always had: putting my thoughts into words. I got the introduction wrong, didn't I?
To respond to your comments: Yes, I do and don't do lots of things that modern people/Christians call outdated, but I don't care what people say. I just do what I understand is right according to the bible. You understand it different, do it different.
I have to tell everybody one thing: If yo are a real Christian, you cannot be gay - that's against the rules. God's rules. And if you are a Christian you HAVE to love everybody, just like God does. And He doesn't hate gays. He loves everybody in this world. He just hates the things people do. He didn't make us that way, because He doesn't want us to be that way. If He wanted us to be gay, He'd have made us gay. All of us.
As a Christian we are to love everybody - even our enemies. But we are to hate sin. It's just like with kids: you don't necessary like what they're doing, but you still love your kids. You don't have to like what gays do, but you still should love them as people.
I know plenty of people who use Christianity to judge others for anything, including being gay. Jesus had nothing whatsoever to say on the subject, but did say 'whosoever is without sin cast the first stone'. I am Christian and I don't care at all whether someone is gay or not. It's not a choice, or there would not be gays in states like Alabama. I prefer the Christian message of love and tolerance. If God whats to send people to hell for being gay, that's his job.
I have become a lot more tolerant and kind in the last 15 years (or at least willing to publicly say it and do it) and have been a much happier person for it.
Wow. Powerful stuff.
When I first read I'm Christian Unless You're Gay, it really impacted me as a lesbian who was once a devout and spiritual Christian. I wanted everyone to read it. I felt so wounded by the Christian Church that turned its back on me. Your post gave me hope that Christians might exist who believed in what was once so meaningful to me. About a year ago I somehow found a beautiful loving community at a UCC that welcomes gay people. After feeling banished from the Church for two decades, I found a home. Together we're working on feeding the hungry and the homeless, working for social justice, and creating a safe and loving space where all are welcome. Perhaps I would have found this community without the impact of your post, but I'm sure that it helped open my heart to give love a chance.
I just responded to the second nasty response email in my blog. Please have a read.
I have spent the last four decades trying to live up to my own personal philosophy "Save the world, one person at a time, through kindness." I fall down or fail sometimes and sometimes the deluge of ugly, hateful and negative responses from the world is disheartening and I get so tired I grind to a stop. Then someone I lent a hand to (or put an arm around) years ago tells me they wouldn't be alive if I hadn't been there, or that they would never have taken the chance that led to something fabulous, or that they believe I helped them find the strength to be a better, kinder person and I feel both elated and humbled. Each of these people really made the change in their life themselves but they needed someone to believe they could. And I get up again myself and go on, wearing my heart on my sleeve and believing that WE are the answer to our own problems. Love to you all, especially those trapped on either side of the walls of fear and anger. May you all forgive and be forgiven and go on to feel kindness.
Judge NOT lest ye be judged.
"Do not judge others, and you will not be judged."
That woman does NOT know her scripture. That just makes me sick.
I just read these stories today (November 14, 2012). Wow. So powerful, and so beautiful. Genuine stories like these really touch the heart. Thanks for sharing them with us.
That is AMAZING!!! I don't think there are any suitable words to describe just how wonderful it is that your article made such an impact. It did bring tears to my eyes to read those last positive stories. The first two were saddening in the not-so-touching kind of way. It's just...shocking to me to see that kind of negative attitude and kinda scary to realize I used to be like that. Not. Any. More. Throughout the years I've grown up and let go of those archaic and hateful ideals. People need to be loved and those who are gay cannot change the way they are. It's the way they are. It's not something they know is wrong on a deeper level, it's something that is a part of them and it's not wrong. It's what's right for them. It's how they were born and we should love and accept them as is instead of trying to change an intrinsic aspect of their personal self.
I just recently discovered your blog through a friend who posted "How I Screwed Up My Marriage" - which is an awesome entry, by the way. (Wish my husband would read it.) Thank you for writing, posting and reposting "...Unless You're Gay." I reposted the link in the hopes my husband will see it and read it. It's not likely. My daughter is 6 months clean from opiate addiction, but is living in a city relatively far away. Her whole life right now revolves around recovery, which, of course, means all of her friends are also in recovery. Almost all of them are from middle-class families, but my husband is exasperatingly judgmental, calling them, (and my daughter), "trash," "junkies," "thieves," and "freaks." (Most of them, including my daughter, are into piercings & tatoos). They are her support system, so I am grateful for them, and they're good kids who went down the wrong path - for whatever reason. I am ashamed to admit that, before this experience with my daughter, I was less than accepting myself of these individuals, but that's all changed. We are afraid, (i.e. unaccepting/disdainful/intolerant) of what we do not know. I know these kids now. I'm sorry. I'm rambling. I guess what I want to say is "thank you" for including EVERYONE in your tolerance post. I have never read an essay or editorial on tolerance that included addicts or "trash," and it is remarkably thoughtful of you to do so. I will continue to read and enjoy your blog.
Am I missing any posts/links? http://www.danoah.com/2011/11/im-christian-unless-youre-gay.html http://www.danoah.com/2011/11/powerful-responses-to-im-christian-unless-youre-gay-blog.html http://www.danoah.com/2011/11/few-more-powerful-responses-to-im-christian-unless-youre-gay.html http://www.danoah.com/2011/12/responses-video-to-the-im-christian-unless-youre-gay-post.html http://www.danoah.com/2011/12/the-most-amazing-response-yet-to-im-christian-unless-youre-gay.html http://www.danoah.com/2011/12/men-in-uniform-respond-to-the-post-im-christian-unless-youre-gay.html http://www.danoah.com/2012/01/my-daughter-home-at-last-response-to-im-christian-unless-youre-gay.html http://www.danoah.com/2012/04/a-teens-brave-response-to-im-christian-unless-youre-gay.html
Just found your blog today. Started with the cute baby photos and progressed through many posts until I got to to the "I'm Christian, Unless..." posts. Wow. As the mom of a gay son, I just have to say thank you. I go to a fairly conservative church, but live in a very liberal area. It makes me sad to think of the reactions my son will receive from others at our church (those closest to him know, but he only tells if directly asked). I just don't get how parents, friends, etc can cut someone out of their life for admitting that they are gay. S/He is the exact same person that they knew and loved the second before s/he says "I'm gay"! I can't imagine turning my back on my son. He's a really great guy. I can't stand the thought of never having contact with him again. It would be worse than him dying.
The "church" has done so much damage to so many people in the name of Christ!! The God I follow sent His Son for EVERYONE, loves EVERYONE, and holds out his arms to EVERYONE. None of us deserves that love, but it's given freely to all.
So, again, thank you. Thank you for starting this discussion. Thank you for your boldness, your willingness to be open about your own life, and for standing up what you believe!
@MelissaAnneTobin Not to take away from the peaceful tone of your note, but if we could all stop referring to it as a "choice..." That's really the line we need to cross. People are who they are. They didn't choose to be straight or gay. They simply are. That will make the rest of the good you espouse easier for everyone. Cheers :)
@Just someone Actually, you DO have homosexuality in primitive culture and always have, But lets discuss the Laws of Leviticus shall we, First of all... If you are Christian, then you believe Jesus to be the Christ, the fulfillment of the covenant, so what does that mean?Well a covenant is a contract, SO if Jesus is the fulfillment of the Leviticus contract, then it's restrictions and laws have served their purpose (thus allowing you to eat shrimp and pork and such). If we can assume that Jesus fulfilled that contract we can expect new rules maybe.. so we can look to the bible... does it give us any new rules after the arrival of Jesus? Why yes In Matthew You are told to Love god, and to love your neighbor as yourself... So we have precedent for the NEW laws of the post Leviticus era. Homosexuality does not get brought up again until Saul of Tarsus (the apostle Paul to y'all), Who A) never actually MET Jesus, and B) was in his previous life a Pharisee, after losing his Mentor, it's it not a stretch at all, to understand why he would fall back on the Laws of Leviticus... The next question would logically be "well no one contradicts him" the answer to this one is sad and one of the reasons i am no longer christian. During the first attempt to create a unified Bible, 2/3 of the biblical writing were not even considered because they were not written in Greek (which was the language that society considered the most "scholarly" at the time about 300AD) Who was the apostle who spent the most time among Greek speaking people? Why the apostle Paul of course. Biblical history is full of these troublesome happenings, If the bible were so definitely anti-homosexuality then it becomes very odd that the catholic church had liturgy for it, and were a pair of married male saints... I've spent a life time of studying spirit, and have been told by many priests and rabbi's that i have a clear understanding of biblical text, i am also a bit of a historian and you cannot look at the writings of ancient peoples without considering their society and the history between then and now. For instance, the phrase "thou shalt not suffer a witch to live" is ludicrous ancient Hebrews did not have a concept of witch as we know it, the word used more accurately translates to Poisoner implying one who makes poisons for assassination and recreation ( equate them to a modern person running a meth lab), however how many people have been persecuted by that mistranslation ? Aside from ALL these facts is the simple fact that you don't get to judge others, Christ Says not to, so WHO is more important in your faith, the transcribers and the pharisees....or Christ?
btw I'm NOT a Christian, and I find this whole Banning of love cruel and heartless, which is very unlike the Jesus who's work i truly admire.... Maybe instead of looking to the punishments you truly ask yourself What WOULD Jesus do, because the only time i can remember him getting angry, was over greedy people turning the temple into a business....
@Leunscha You may have actually just earned a small part of respect from me based on your last statement -- you don't care what others say, you follow your own beliefs. Unfortunately, as has been pointed out, you cherry-pick what you want to believe in the Bible and use it to beat at others. If you're going to use Leviticus to say you don't believe that Gays are Christians, then you need to read the whole of Leviticus. As has been pointed out, Leviticus also goes into other sins like cutting your hair, shaving, or eating pork.
For me, the contradictions and cruelty in the Bible are part of why I will never be a Christian. A few examples:
"You shall have no other God before me" and the implied "or you're going to hell":
I really hope we're not the most advanced beings in the universe, but I've personally never seen anything that convinces me that there is a God much less which one is the one true God that I should worship exclusively. The usual line from Christians is that all I need to do is look around at all the wonderful things that without God (including man), wouldn't exist. If that's the case, then what created God? This is the point most Christians change the subject or leave.
On top of that, what about the people who are born into areas where Christianity is never even discussed and worse, a Bible is outlawed and can get you killed for just possessing one. Is the Christian God really so cruel as to threaten his children that have never even known him?
The whole homosexuality thing:
The Bible contradicts itself on this issue (and quite a few others) so which part of the Bible am I to believe?
Wars in the name of God:
If we're supposed to love each other, then why did we have the Crusades or quite a few of the existing wars going on in Christs name?
Enough for now
@Leunscha "If He wanted us to be gay, He'd have made us gay. All of us."
Ah. And if he'd wanted us to have blue eyes, he'd have made us with blue eyes. ALL of us.
@Leunscha So I assume you eat no shell fish and no pork, do not cut you r hair if you are woman or shave your beard if you are man, because that is in the Bible too. Oh, that is outdated,. Imagine that!
Jesus never said one word, not one against homosexuality. Neither did God. So the people who said something about Homosexuality were just men and they said a lot of crazy stuff in the Bible. The bible condone slavery, concubines, mistresses, abortions and countless other things. If you actually were familiar with what the Bible actually says, not just the passages your preacher reads to you in Church on Sunday, you would realize it is quite fallible and quite wrong in many many places.
If you want to be a Christian, try following Christ, not Paul or any number of the other fallible men who wrote the Bible. Christ left his Church to Peter - and Paul was an enemy of Peters. Something to think about, late at night, while you are busy judging people.
@Leunscha There's a problem with your very first statement. By saying what you did, you are also stating that anyone who violates any other part of the Bible (like the 10 commandments for example) willfully can not be a real Christian either. Here are a BUNCH that are broken on a regular basis and frequently in churches (based on English Standard Version although others are similar).
2nd commandment: You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. Problem is that most churches have images or statues of Christ on the cross.
3rd commandment: You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain. UMMMM I won't even mention the number of times I've heard a "Christian" do just exactly that. Asking for forgiveness assumes you didn't do it on purpose.
4th commandment: Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor, and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord your God. On it you shall not do any work, you, or your son, or your daughter, your male servant, or your female servant, or your livestock, or the sojourner who is within your gates. Ever work on Sunday? Oops, I guess you're going straight to hell.
7th commandment: You shall not commit adultery. Do I really need to point out the number of people who commit adultery including many in power and when they're caught, they magically ask for forgiveness? Did they not know what they were doing was wrong while the were committing adultery?
8th commandment: You shall not steal. LOTS of that going on according to my local police blotter.
9th commandment: You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor. Lots of that going on too.
10th commandment: You shall not covet your neighbor's house; you shall not covet your neighbor's wife, or his male servant, or his female servant, or his ox, or his donkey, or anything that is your neighbor's. Seeing a pattern here?
Are you going to tell all of them that they aren't Christians too -- more than likely including yourself (definitely includes me, too)?
@Leunscha There is a flaw in your logic. If God insists on all people being the same, why so people have different hair colour, eye colour, skin colour? Why are some of us short and others tall? We can do things to make it appear that our appearance is different, but it is the outward appearance changing only. A person can pretend to be straight, but that does not make it so any more than my dying my hair and wearing lifts in my shoes and coloured contacts will make me tall with red hair and green eyes. A person may stay in the closet all their life, and deny being anything but straight to everyone, but that does not make it so. If you believe that God created humans, and that God does not make mistakes, then he created gays, lesbians, bisexuals, transgendered, and all other people who are not straight, and not by accident.
@a grateful reader
Just curious, what is UCC? I have heard of Unitarian Universalist, which welcomes gays with open arms (and pretty much anyone else that wants to feed the hungry and homeless, work on social justice and create a safe and loving space.
@Stihltygre I couldn't have said it better myself!
@lanl_menace @Leunscha I don't pick what I want to believe. I believe everything the bible says. There's just some things that are quite confusing and that's why everybody interprets it in their own way. And, as I already said, I'm sorry my comment was offending/judging. I didn't mean it that way.
Lots of the laws from the old testament were updated/refined by Jesus himself in Matthew chapter 5; and some of them through visions (like the one about eating pork, Acts 10). As a woman, I don't cut my hair either (but I care for it by trimming) and my husband does have a beard.
To your question about who created God: You're never gonna find a satisfying answer to that question. Because if we find someone who created God, the next question is gonna be who created that someone and so on and so on. But I rather believe, that there is a God, who always existed and always will exist, than to believe in the 'big bang theory'. There's no logic in nothing going bang and creating this great universe. I can give you a recipe for creating: Take a bowl of nothing, wait until it goes 'bang' and see what you've got. ;) All we can understand about God is as big as an atom in the whole universe; He's gonna explain the rest to us once we're in heaven.
God doesn't threaten the ones who never know Him. Everybody at some point in their lives gets the chance of hearing about Him - with or without bible.
The wars that are so called in Christs name are not really in Christs name. Just some crazy people calling it that.
Actually, all you need to believe is that there is a God; that He sent His only son (Jesus Christ) to the earth (as a human being) to die for us sinners; that Jesus is risen from the dead and went back to heaven and everything Jesus ever said. In all the other matters I'd say: study the bible as good as you can (netbible.com is a good spot to look) and if it gets too confusing, follow your heart/conscience. Once you believe and ask God for forgiveness of your sins, you'll have the Holy Spirit helping you to understand better.
@Karolenski @Leunscha Forget this one. I rephrased my comment.
@lanl_menace @Leunscha Actually, that is in fact exactly, what I was saying.Whoever does these things willfully, cannot say they are Christians. If you really are a Christian you are to do what the bible says. All of it. You can't just do some of it, just like every country has their laws and everybody who lives there has to keep them or gets thrown into jail.
And I'm not saying that I'm perfect. By far not. But I try to keep every single one of God's laws.
@vicden @Leunscha I didn't say God wants us all to be the same in looks. But there is a passage in the bible (and I'm sorry I don't know exactly where) that says, that God is disgusted by men having sex with men and women having sex with women. (or humans having sex with animals)
And I don't believe that God makes people gay. I believe being gay comes from somewhere else. I'm sure it's just a mind-thing that comes through certain circumstances.
@modernmom23 It's the United Church of Christ.
And I'm not giving in here, but I won't comment anymore. Someone will find something else I supposedly do wrong and I'll come up with an explanation and it's never going to end. I believe and do what I do and you can believe and do whatever you want. I do love you though, no matter how much you disagree with me. That is what you were supposed to get from my original (and rephrased) comment.
You should pay some attention to such passages as Jesus saying the divorce laws were "hard-hearted", or telling his disciples to openly breach the Sabbath commandments. In these cases, he is saying, precisely, that you do NOT just "follow whatever is written in an old book": some of it is of lasting validity, some is just "the best they could do at the time". How do you tell which is which? For that, you need to have a moral sense. You are using the book as a substitute for a moral sense: you would be better off burning the book.
@Leunscha @RobertEckert @lanl_menace and you can't know what the book says when 2/3 of it was left on the cutting room floor in the third century... Christ said "Love god Love your neighbor as you love yourself these two laws i give you" he did NOT say there will be more later... i'm Pagan and I know that... the laws of leviticus were the laws of the covenant, the covenant was fulfilled by Jesus' resurrection... when you fulfill the conditions of your mortgage do you continue to send the bank money too? Blind reliance on a 2000 yr old book if either folly, or an unwillingness to listen to your own heart and the hearts of people, NOT creating a closer realtionship with the "God of Love" as y'all like to call him
@Leunscha So based on what you said (which is incorrect by the way -- do a little research), God chooses to "punish" a child (who obviously had nothing to do with the sexual acts the parents performed) and if the child matures to adulthood, should not be allowed to marry? Is that really what you're saying?
So much for a loving God.
I say, yes, God does make those people, but only because of interference of humans. I looked it up, but it doesn't say exactly. As far as I know hermaphrodites are mutations that occur when the two people who make the baby are related too close. Like my parents are fourth cousins or something like that. So hermaphrodites are not entirely "just" God's creation.
@lanl_menace @Leunscha @vicden IanI, I think you may have misunderstood my comment, I don not believe for an instant that ones sexual orientation is a choice. If I ever had, seeing a bright funny young man try to kill himself because he "just couldn't be straight" (his phrase) would have disabused me of the notion.
@Leunscha I suspect you are thinking of Leviticus, but I would be careful about using that one as it carries the same weight as wearing mixed fabric clothing, shaving, eating pork or shellfish or working on the Sabbath
Here's one that God definitely makes and that also causes problems for your theory... Look up the term 'Hermaphrodite'. In short, the term refers to a person who is born with both sets of genders (or parts thereof). By very definition, a hermaphrodite is both gay and straight at the same time -- unless parents or a doctor chooses to remove what they believe to be the less dominant parts -- and God help them if the parent or doctor chooses wrong.