House Bill H.R. 1592, Senate Bill S.B. 1105, & Free Speech

Friends,

Both would ‘make negative statements concerning homosexuality, such as calling the practice of homosexuality a sin from the pulpit, a ‘hate crime’ punishable by law,’ (from and AFA email, as quoted by The News-Herald, July 30, 2007).

Said another, “Sexual orientation is the last bastion of acceptable hatred, discrimination and untold bias.” She went on to say, “Members of this community are being consistently harassed and terrorized. There are still people who think that gays and lesbians should burn in hell.” (Kristin Miccio, associate prof., University of Denver’s Sturm College of Law)

Said local congressman Steve LaTourette, “I believe to target a victim because of race, religion, gender, disability, or sexual orientation is wrong. As a former prosecutor, however, I oppose the bill because I think a crime is a crime no matter what the motivation.”

Nicole Williams, communications director for Stephanie Tubbs Jones (D-Cleveland) said, “She [Tubbs-Jones] believes inhuman rights. This bill will provide people who are homosexuals with equal protection under the law.”

Finally, a man identified as a gay man from Lake County (Ohio) named Dan, said, “I’ve never felt threatened; I’ve never been physically touched or insulted. It’s been directed toward the topic (of homosexuality), but never directly at me.  They’re [Christians] so worried about a bill affecting their ability to preach from the Bible, but…isn’t it true that the Bible teaches us to love everyone equally, not to hate, in general?”

(All quotes are from the July 30, 2007 of The News-Herald, Ohio)

__________________

The gist is this: If you can’t make them accept us, they at least ought to be silenced by law. But what homosexuals in general don’t understand is this: It is precisely because we do love them that we preach against their sin. If we didn’t love them, we would be silent about what God says concerning sin, the Cross, and the judgment to come. If I am silenced, and no longer allowed to speak the entire truth of the Gospel, how can I genuinely say that I love someone? I can’t, because then I would be lying about God.

What Christians also object to is this: there is an ongoing attempt by certain segments of the homosexual population, to reverse the terms, to ‘harass and terrorize’ the church. Among some Christian preachers and congregants, there is a great deal of fear that we might be forced, by law, to recant a central truth of Christian doctrine: that sin is sin and that sinners must repent and be cleansed by Christ. But if there is no sin (even though just because the law says it doesn’t make it true). In some cases it is already happening as certain homosexual activists continue pushing their agenda on churches. But the church is equally opposed to all sin: homosexuality, murder, abortion, rape, lying, stealing, etc. Homosexuals are not subjected to any more or less discrimination than a murderer or an adulterer: All are required to repent of their sin and call on the Name of the Lord. But you can’t have it both ways. You cannot persist in sin and claim to be a member of the Body of Christ. And just because one doesn’t go to jail for homosexuality, doesn’t mean it is any less a sin than say, lying or idolatry. In fact, the New Testament might be suggesting it is an even worse sin since all other sin occurs outside the body, but sexual sin occurs against one’s own body (see 1 Corinthians 6:18, and chapters 5-6 in general). Simply legalizing something doesn’t change its fundamental nature.

Finally, a legal question, since I am evidently unschooled in such matters. Where in the law are homosexuals discriminated against? Where are they afforded less protection than any other citizen of the United States? (Please spare me the drivel about homosexual ‘marriage’ since it is logically impossible for homosexuals to be ‘married’ in any meaningful sense of the word.) Doesn’t all crime involve some sort of discrimination or hate? Is there such a thing as a ‘love crime’? How is any crime not ‘hate’?  I’ll need some help. If someone kills me am I entitled to less justice than if a homosexual were murdered? If a homosexual is murdered is she entitled to more justice and recompense for loved ones than I and my family would be if I were murdered? Sounds to me like homosexuals want more protection under the law, not equality. Our rights should be based on our citizenship, not our sexuality. It’s a sort of left-handed discrimination against those who do right.

The bottom line is that homosexuals want a certain amount (or a large amount!) of legislated justification for their lifestyle. They want approval for what they inherently know is wrong and unjustifiable; a certain soothing of the conscience. The law will do what the law will do, but man’s law will not override or overthrow God’s law. It will not change anything at all except that it will probably make life, in reality, more difficult for homosexuals: Eventually, churches will simply screen every single person who comes to worship on Sundays (meaning, only members would be allowed in; a churches would become privatized entities prohibiting participation by anyone but members), or churches will go underground, or churches will simply ignore the law altogether and continue preaching the Gospel we have been called to preach–regardless of who it offends (my personal favorite). The Church must not be silent on this matter. Homosexuals will find themselves on the outside, and will likely not hear the truth, at all, of the God who loves them, died for their sins, and calls them to repentance in the Name of Jesus.

We should follow these developments and see where they go. It is dangerous ground the government is treading upon. I pray that we do not follow the path of the Canadian lawmakers who have already engaged in such abomination and outrage.

jerry

PS–Maybe if homosexuals can get this law passed, perhaps Christians can get a law passed against the likes of certain atheists in this world, and against liberals, and against pro-abortion fanatics, militant Muslims, university professors, pornographers, musicians, and, well,–you know, all those who discriminate against Christians in a million different ways each day. Can we get a law passed against the senators and representatives too for their utter and sheer and transparent stupidity?

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  1. Winghunter

    The deviants of sexual behavior have five dozen more “demands” for us on their little list…it’s time to deal with this insanity.

  2. DIANNE YOUNG

    I STAND IN AGGREEMENT WITH THE WILL OF OUR LORD. HE CERTAINLY WILL MAKE ALL THINGS CLEAR AND IT IS CLEAR TO ME THAT HE WANTS ALL TO HEAR HIS WORD. HOW CAN ANYONE THINK OTHERWISE. GOD BLESS YOU
    THANK YOU FOR YOUR TIME
    SINCERELY, DIANNE

  3. DIANNE YOUNG

    I STAND IN AGREEMENT OF HIS WORD AND HIS WORK IS CLEAR AS TO HOW THE WORLD WILL BE. GOD BLESS YOU
    THANK YOU FOR YOUR TIME

  4. Jesus said to the woman caught in the very act of adultery to “go and sin no more.” He is not a respect of person. Certainly He wouldn’t tell homosexuals to continue in sin, would He?

  5. Roberto,

    Uh, I hope not. Thanks for stopping by.

    jerry

  6. DW

    Regardless of how one views homosexuality the bible is very clear about lying. I have read this bill and there is nothing in it that would prohibit free speech. I hate to say this as a conservative Christian who loves the Lord but it would appear that our fellow Christians are lying to us. Last time I checked ‘Bearing false witness’ was still prohibited under the 10 commandments. When we put out things that are not true we hurt our witness and destroy are credibility. See this site for more information: http://www.snopes.com/politics/sexuality/hatecrime.asp

    DW

  7. DW,

    Thanks for stopping by. You are evidently not someone who is charged with the responsibility of standing up and preacheing each week from the Word of God. Such laws have already been used in Canada to punish preachers who do this very thing. Regardless of what is ‘in’ the bill, there is nothing to prevent people from using the bill, or the law, in a way that would prohibit speech. We hurt our credibility and our witness when we don’t preach the entire truth of Scripture and this means preaching against the sin and dissipation of this world.

    jerry

  8. DW

    The bible says : “Test all thing. Hold fast to that which is good.”
    Lets talk about Canada. Canada has a hate speech law not a hate crimes law. But contrary to what you may have been told, Canada’s hate speech law does have an exemption for religious speech. Here is a seciton of their law from section 319 3..

    Defences
    (3) No person shall be convicted of an offence under subsection (2)
    (a) if he establishes that the statements communicated were true;
    (b) if, in good faith, the person expressed or attempted to establish by an argument an opinion on a religious subject or an opinion based on a belief in a religious text;
    (c) if the statements were relevant to any subject of public interest, the discussion of which was for the public benefit, and if on reasonable grounds he believed them to be true; or
    (d) if, in good faith, he intended to point out, for the purpose of removal, matters producing or tending to produce feelings of hatred toward an identifiable group in Canada.

    If you want to see this for yourself go to: http://laws.justice.gc.ca/en/ShowDoc/cs/c-46///en?page=1
    As you can see in part b above you most certainly can preach against homosexuality form the puplit in Canada. You are protected from prosecution.

    There was a time when I believed everything I heard from groups on the internet. Then one day I caught them in a lie. Now I test everything myself as the bible instructs. Once again, we are destroying our integrity .. Christians are lying to Christians and that before unbelievers .. this shoud not be happening.

    DW

  9. DW

    Another comment. House bill 1592 DOES have a clause in it that says free speech is protected.. Here is a portion of what the bill says..

    SEC. 8. RULE OF CONSTRUCTION.
    Nothing in this Act, or the amendments made by this Act, shall be construed to prohibit any expressive conduct protected from legal prohibition by, or any activities protected by the free speech or free exercise clauses of, the First Amendment to the Constitution.

    You can read the entire bill at: http://www.govtrack.us/congress/billtext.xpd?bill=h110-1592

    Our country protects free speech. It (sadly) even allows flag burning as a form of protected speech. Even the ACLU, which is not typically the Christian’s friend, defends free speech – including speech against homosexuals. See their web page: http://www.aclu.org/studentsrights/expression/12808pub19941231.html

    Look forward to hearing your response(s). May the Lord bless you richly as you serve Him.

    DW

  10. DW,

    I’m pressed for time right now, but I will get back to your post later. Thanks for stopping by. But let me ask one question, why do you think such laws need to be passed if not to punish people who speak out against it, in particular, Christian preachers?

    jerry

  11. DW

    (Yes there are activists that would love to silence free speech but they typically fail at this – even in countries that do not have protection of free speech laws –Yes I know about Pastor Ake Green of Sweden – spare me the story- contrary to what you may have heard – he did not go to jail for preaching – his sentence was suspended and he was acquitted )

    But,to your question… the reason many of these people want these laws passed is for their own protection.

    Here is a brief excerpt of the FBI statistics for 2005 on Hate Crimes..

    An analysis of the 7,160 single-bias incidents by bias motivation revealed that 54.7 percent were motivated by a racial bias, 17.1 percent were triggered by a religious bias, 14.2 percent were motivated by a sexual-orientation bias, and 13.2 percent of the incidents were motivated by an ethnicity/national origin bias. Nearly 1 percent (0.7) involved bias against a disability. http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/hc2005/pressrelease.htm

    So, yes, it is true that there are hate crimes against people due to sexual orientation bias. The number is relatively low because gay people represent 1%-2% of the population (this 1-2% is per Exodus – see site http://exodus.to/content/view/42/87/ ).
    When only 1-2% of the population is experiencing 14% of the hate crimes it’s a significant number.

    Also .. From your question you seem to still be buying into the Christian myth that these bills would stifle your ability to preach. The truth is that the United States already has a multitude of hate crime laws for people of different orientation. Here is a quick list (as of Sept 2001) of states without / with hate crimes laws…

    Twenty states have laws that do not include sexual orientation as a protected group (AL, AR, CO, GA, ID, MD, MI, MS, MO, MT, NC, ND, oh, ok, pa, SD, TX, UT, VA, WV)

    Twenty-four states and the District of Columbia have laws that do protect people on the basis of their sexual orientation. (AZ, CA, CT, DC, DE, FL, IL, IA, KY, LA, ME, MA, MN, NE, NV, NH, NJ, NY, OR, RI, TN, VT, WA, WI)

    As you can see from the above, 24 states already have hate crimes laws that include sexual orientation. Have you heard reports of preachers being silenced in these states?? I haven’t.

    When Christians use disinformation (otherwise known as lies) to oppose these bills we hurt our credibility. How can we tell gay and lesbian people that God loves them and Jesus died for them and wants them to be part of His kingdom when we are spreading such lies ?? (Note: Don’t have space for it here but gays and lesbians are dealing with an identity issue see web site for Love Won Out for more details on this:
    ( http://www.lovewonout.com/questions/ )

    Lets turn to the scriptures….

    Look at what Paul instructs us to do and why we are to do it…
    I Cor 19:19-22
    19 Though I am free and belong to no man, I make myself a slave to everyone, to win as many as possible. 20 To the Jews I became like a Jew, to win the Jews. To those under the law I became like one under the law (though I myself am not under the law), so as to win those under the law. 21 To those not having the law I became like one not having the law (though I am not free from God’s law but am under Christ’s law), so as to win those not having the law. 22 To the weak I became weak, to win the weak. I have become all things to all men so that by all possible means I might save some.

    Now neither the Bible nor I am asking you to become gay to reach gay people. However we do need to stand in their shoes just as Paul was wisely able to do for the Jews, the Gentiles, the weak .. etc. We are to become all things to all people. WHY?? .. So that we might by all means save some.

    So lets do what the Apostle Pauls tells us to do. Lets stand in the shoes of a gay or lesbian person …

    1. What does it look like when Christian groups oppose bills that they feel would protect them?

    2. Worse yet, what does it look like when Christians resort to lies to oppose these bills?

    3. Even worse still what would you think when those same Christians quote scriptures that say homosexuals should be put to death .. see Lev 20:13 “If a man lies with a male as with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination; they shall be put to death; their blood is upon them.”

    Why in the world would a gay or lesbian person trust a Christian?? How in the world do we have any creditability left to share Jesus with them???????

    I have more to say to you but feel I should stop for now. I look forward to your responses.

    God bless

    D W

  12. DW

    Jerry ..

    I sent a response to your last question but I don’t see it on line. Do you know what happened to it?

    DW

  13. DW

    Oops… I had to hit refresh to see it.

    My error

    God bless,

    DW

  14. DW,

    I have stated my opinions on the Scripture dealing with homosexuality elsewhere on this blog so I’m not going to repeat it. I don’t know anything about ‘pastor Green of Sweden’ so consider yourself spared.

    Let me pose a couple of thoughts.

    First, isn’t all crime motivated by some form of hatred? So how can we say that only 1-2% of the population is experiencing 14% of the ‘hate crime’? All crime is hatred in one form or another. When a husband murders his wife or a wife her husband, there is hatred involved. Maybe it’s hatred for one another, maybe for the kids, maybe because of his or her parents, maybe because of a lover. Well, are such people also protected from ‘hate crimes’? What about, for example, the postal employee who goes in and shoots up his office because he hates his boss or co-workers. Are they protected to? Is that a hate crime? Just exactly how is ‘hate’ defined?

    Hate crimes bills single out homosexuals and, in my opinion, create a new class of people who are already protected by the constitution of the United States and the Bill of Rights. Why should they have more protection than any of the rest of us? What you don’t seem to understand is that homosexuals deserve no more rights than any other citizen. They do not deserve to be a protected class, as say a minority who didn’t choose his national identity.

    What is the limit of a hate crime? Will hate crime be limited strictly to violence? What about if I walk in someone’s yard, albeit accidentally, while carrying a sign that says, ‘repent for the kingdom of God is near’? Could that be construed as a hate crime? You seem rather naive about the way such things start out innocently enough and grow to Orwellian proportions by the time it is all said and done. Would it be a hate crime for me to walk down the street at a Gay festival holding hands with my wife? You see? This is not paranoia, this is reality. It is, contrary to your belief, the road we are traveling down quickly.

    Second, Christians do not lose their credibility when they oppose bills. We live in America and have a right to oppose things we believe are wrong. It is not a lie to dispense information about the motivation behind such legislation. It’s called civic responsibility. Christians hurt their credibility when they don’t preach all of the Scripture in accordance with God’s will. We hurt our credibility when we announce that a sinner can continue sinning because the law protects them. We hurt our credibility when we suggest that one group is more important than another group.

    Third, just because Paul ‘became’ something, doesn’t mean, in any way, that he suddenly stopped preaching the whole truth of the Scripture. Nor did it stop Paul from saying elsewhere ‘become like me as I am like Christ.’ Which means that he called people to repent from their sin and put on Christ. I will not stand in the shoes of the homosexual because that is not what Paul is asking us to do. He is not saying that he literally changed himself and became someone different. It meant that he understood their point of view as one who is a sinner in need of Grace. It means that he considers their point of view as a point of view that leads to damnation not salvation in Christ.

    Fourth, I don’t know any Christians who quote Leviticus 20:13 in support of their theology. However, if they do, so what? Doesn’t Paul speak in Romans about ‘putting to death the old way of life’? Doesn’t the Leviticus passage point out the grave offense of homosexuality? Doesn’t it point out that God is opposed to homosexuality as he is also opposed to incest, rape, murder, stealing, lying, coveting, and so on and so on? To be sure, no one, except a few lunatics, is advocating that homosexuals be put to death for the act of homosexuality. I think many are, however, asking for homosexuals to stop ramming their ideology, their practices, their blasphemies, their errant theology, in the faces of those who think their conduct is repulsive. Preach to them, Yes! Call them to repent, Yes! Love then when they hurt, Yes! But no more or less than we would for any other sinner in need of grace.

    Tell me, friend, how on earth could a homosexual trust a Christian if the Christian refuses to point out the truth of their condition? I don’t really think credibility is the question if the Christian is preaching the entire truth of the entire Gospel to the entire world in the authority of Jesus and the power of the Spirit. What right do I have to say, “You can go on living in sin because all that matters is love”? I have no right to mitigate the Word of God for anyone. Our credibility does not come from our support or opposition of laws that are designed only to silence and create a new class of minorities. Our credibility comes when we preach faithfully God’s Word, in season and out of season.

    Is it a hate Crime when homosexuals make a mockery of the Jesus and his twelve disciples at the Fulton Street Fair? (See my earlier post.) Is it a hate crime when homosexual priests rape and molest young boys? Is it a hate crime when the sisters of perpetual mercy mock Roman Catholic nuns? Would it be a hate crime if a homosexual killed a heterosexual? Is it a hate crime when homosexual pedophiles (such as nambla) kidnap, rape, molest children? Do you see what I’m saying here? Where are the lines to be drawn? I know that not all homosexuals do these things, that’s not the point. The point is: Not all Christians behave towards homosexuals in the manner you have portrayed either. Your error is in painting all of us with the same brush. I had two homosexual men living right next door to me for about 2 years. I shared my garden with them, and they with me. We talked, we were neighborly. I never once quoted Leviticus 20:13 to them, but I did invite them to a church picnic once. One of them owned a flower shop where I bought flowers for my wife.

    Is it a hate Crime when Muslims kill Korean Christians? What about when a black man kills a white man or a white man a black man or a man a woman or a woman a man?

    In the last 10 years of my life, I have heard about one ‘hate crime’ against homosexuals. The Shepherd boy. And even that case has it’s unique set of circumstances. Is it a hate crime when one homosexual kills another homosexual?

    My friend, it’s all hate. That’s the point.

    I think you are very, very misled on all of this. I really have nothing more to say unless you respond in which case I will take the time to read.

    jerry

  15. DW

    First of all you did not ask me why I (allegedly) support hate crimes legislation. You asked me why they support it and I told you why they support it. Also I am getting the impression from your last post that you believe I am gay affirming. I am not. Nor am I lying affirming, slander affirming, adultery affirming, fornication affirming etc. However I love and respect gay and lesbian people just as I love and respect anyone else that might come into my home or through the church door.

    I will cover you responses point by point..

    Point 1 under your (‘first of all’) points ..

    You say that all crime is hate. That is true. If your objection to this bill is because of that I have no problem with that. But if that is true then are you also opposed to the hate crime laws on the books already? ie .. hate crimes against people of other races etc. If this is the case why is the Christian community not rising up to overturn these laws if they give unequal protection to certain classes.

    You say that homosexuals are not a special class. I agree in that they are most definitely not a race. However, homosexuals did not choose to have the feelings they have any more than you chose to be heterosexual. Some /many do not want those feelings. Some have gone through long struggles to overcome those feelings. Some have succeeded. See web site: http://www.stonewallrevisited.com/menus/pages.html for personal stories of people who have succeeded. These are very touching and heart wrenching stories. Others have not been so successful – see web site: http://www.beyondexgay.com/narratives These stories are also heart wrenching. These individuals made every effort to change their orientation but did not succeed. Success in this has many dimensions. A study of Exodus (an ex-gay ministry) revealed that: “Exodus can describe 38 percent of its programs’ participants as successes, changing to either a “meaningful but complicated” heterosexuality (15 percent) or a stable chastity (23 percent).” See article on web site: http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2007/october/6.48.html

    I say all of this to hopefully stir up some compassion for people who did not ask for the feelings they have. Nor did they do anything to deserve the feelings they have. The only thing willful in this is whether they choose to act on those feelings or not.

    You say that under hate crimes legislation you and your wife could be accused of a hate crime if you walked down the street holding hands at a gay festival. Sorry Jerry but that is really over the top hype. The same law that would protect gay and lesbians under sexual orientation protects you and you wife. Besides, in order for a hate crime to be committed a crime has to happen first. Here is a section of the actual bill HF 1592:

    (1) IN GENERAL- At the request of State, local, or Tribal law enforcement agency, the Attorney General may provide technical, forensic, prosecutorial, or any other form of assistance in the criminal investigation or prosecution of any crime that–

    (A) constitutes a crime of violence;

    (B) constitutes a felony under the State, local, or Tribal laws; and

    (C) is motivated by prejudice based on the actual or perceived race, color, religion, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, or disability of the victim, or is a violation of the State, local, or Tribal hate crime laws.

    As you can see, hand holding is NOT a violent crime nor is it a felony. This is the type of hype that stirs up the flock to needless and baseless fear and yes sometimes it stirs up some to hate. While we are looking at this bill it is also worth noting that the bill does NOT single out homosexuals for protection. It also protects crimes motivated by “actual or perceived race, color, religion, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, or disability of the victim”.

    You say I am naïve. One definition of naïve is having or showing a lack of experience, judgment, or information. A quick run through of all the references I have provided should show that I am not operating out of a lack of information.

    As I have said before, I use to believe Christian Political action groups. I used to believe what I was reading. I used to believe hype like what you said in your previous post as referred to in the previous paragraphs. In other words I, like many people in the pews was (to use your word) naïve. Then I caught them in a lie. From then on I started investigating what they were saying. I found much of it to be fabrication for the purpose of stirring Christians up and getting them to vote and send money. This is simply NOT acceptable behavior for the Christian. On all of my posts I have included references to everything I have said. Hopefully you have actually taken the time to read these references.

    All I have heard from you is innuendo over what might happen. You say we are traveling quickly down a road where you holding hands with you wife at a gay festival will be called a hate crime. I already addressed this but let me ask you some questions:

    1. In you post number 7 you state: “Such laws have already been used in Canada to punish preachers who do this very thing.”

    — Jerry, Canada has had hate speech laws for several years now. Show me and give example of preachers prosecuted for preaching the Word. (this is one of those things that everyone says is happening but I have yet to see a real example)

    2. 24 states in the United States have hate crime laws that include sexual orientation.

    Jerry, show me examples of pastors who have been prosecuted for preaching about homosexuality from the pulpit in these states.

    I look forward to your answer to these questions.

    My apologies for assuming you know about Pastor Ake Green. That is a common story I have heard from Christian Political Organizations. Typical wording is that he was sentenced to prison for preaching against homosexuality. Now my heart and prayers go out to anyone who would be sentenced to prison for preaching. What they forget to tell you is that his sentence was suspended and overturned in an appeals court and the overturn was upheld in Sweden’s Supreme Court. This sets legal precedent for Sweden. They did not succeed in silencing him. Again ,the law that they were charging him with is a hate speech law not a hate crimes law. ( I say this because Christian political action groups leave these important points out. ) See site: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A17496-2005Feb11.html

    Moving on to your Point 2

    You said that Christians do not lose their credibility when they oppose bills. That’s true – Christians can oppose bills without losing credibility. But the problem here is how they oppose them and why. It is one thing to oppose this bill because you are opposed to bills that give special protection to people when we already have crime laws on the books. It is quite a different thing when we move in to lies, fabrication, and innuendo. That is what I am opposed to.

    Moving on to your point 3:

    Paul was brilliant at multicultural ministry. He could speak to different cultures on their terms in a language they would understand. Obviously he talked to them about sin. He did not become sin or practice sin or approve of sin – I never said he did. He became all things to all people that he might save some.

    Also, Jesus had a way of attracting people to him who were sinners. Yes I know that the Father drew them to Him. But Jesus always did the will of the Father. We need to learn to be more like Jesus. Jesus doesn’t trample the harvest. He doesn’t manufacture lies to stir up people against the harvest. He reaches out to the harvest with love and grace and truth.

    Moving on to your point 4:

    I can see a pastor’s heart in some of what you say here. I am glad you are friendly to your homosexual neighbors next door. I am glad that you know that that not all homosexuals are pedophiles or are part of NAMBLA. Pedophilia is not just a homosexual phenomenon. It is a class all by itself. There are heterosexual predators and there are homosexual predators. Unfortunately many Christian Activist Ministries do not portray it this way. They lump it all into one and stir up the naïve flock into fear and, yes, sometimes into hate. It should also be noted that PFLAG, a gay affirming organization, condemns NAMBLA see site: http://www.pflag.org/Policy_Statements.policy_statements.0.html#10
    They have condemned NAMBLA since 1997. I have never heard a Christian Activist Organization tell me this. They usually say the opposite.

    You said that I am painting all of Christianity with the same brush. I am not .. but isn’t that what many Christian political activist groups have done with homosexuals?
    My complaint is that much of visible (to the world) Christianity is acting this way. They are lying. They are lumping all homosexuals into one. They are misleading the flock. And unfortunately much of the flock believes what is said without question.

    You mention in this part of your post that what various groups are doing that is offensive to the Christian. Of course it is offensive. I expect people that do not know Christ to act this way. In other words I expect darkness to act like darkness. However I see trouble whenen what should be light (ie the church) also acts like darkness.

    I leave you with three links to Youtube videos that give some example of what ‘visible’ Christianity looks like to the world of homosexuals.

    Here are 2 Videos Links from a (per Christian Activist Groups) “Peaceful protest at a Philly Outfest event. (note bullhorns and signs).

    The tag line for the last video reads in part: “ Repent America, a Christian activist group which opposes homosexual behavior, peaceably demonstrates at the Philly Outfest in 2004. It appears that local gay government lawyers may have conspired with police to lay false charges on this group in order to intimidate them and others from exercising their constitutional right to free speech.”

    Is this the speech you are trying to protect? If so that’s your business … but know that there may come a day when homosexuals come to our / your church picnics with bullhorns and signs that say ‘Liars’ and ‘Hypocrites’. If they did, the sad thing would be, in some / many cases, they would be right.

    I am not sayng, Jerry, that you cannot or should not preach truth. I have never said that. Stand for truth by all means. What I am saying is that the church as a whole needs to get the log out of its own eye. If church people / groups are doing things in the name of Christ that are wrong then we need to stand up and say so. Jesus did that. He spoke against the leaders of His day without compromising the Word.. He also reached the lost. He also spoke truth because Jesus is the truth.

    If we sit back and do nothing we are just as guilty as those who are doing things in the name of Christ that are wrong. We need to be like Christ.

    May the Lord bless you richly in you work

    DW

    P.S. I am moving toward supporting hate crimes legislation because I am seeing too much hatred among Christians. When I talk about hatred I am not talking about gracious, compassionate conversation that defines what sin is. I am talking about the lying, the slander and the over the top innuendo. There is no excuse for this in children of the King.

  16. DW,

    I cannot begin to reply to all this. I think you are sincere in your position, but I don’t think you are clearly reading my position and I don’t really want to repeat it because I have taken more time on this subject than I needed to. Let me make just a couple short points.

    First, I disagree with your statement that homosexuals do not ‘choose’ to be who they are and act the way they act. Jeff, an atheist who visits sometimes, continually says he doesn’t choose to be an atheist and I don’t agree with him either. I disagree that we don’t choose to behave the way we behave, and that we don’t choose to act in concert with the desires of the flesh. It’s called sin. And the problem in the church is that many are trying to redefine what sin is and is not. There are, to be sure, other factors involved, but this in no way exculpates us from the consequences of those choices we make. If you know Scripture, then you know that all have sinned and fallen short of God’s glory. I’m not saying that the homosexual has incurred any more or less guilt than any other sinner. What I am saying is that it is the homosexual population that is trying to make themselves a separate class of citizens, with special rights. A hate crime, any crime, cannot be defined based soley on the basis of someone’s behavior whether it is chosen or not. Crime needs to be based on a standard of righteousness that God established and nothing else and it needs to be uniform for all citizens, everywhere (at least everywhere in the US). Seriously consider at what point this sort of legislation might stop. At what point will the pedophile start claiming that he too has constitutional rights BECAUSE he is a pedophile, BECAUSE he didn’t choose to be who he is? To declare that someone has special rights BECAUSE they are anything other than an American Citizen is not fair to the rest of us who are not a separate, special class of people. This is my main objection to so-called ‘hate crime’ legislation.

    Thus, I do not think civil rights bills are in the same class, but then again, I don’t think a black man facing southern segregation, discrimination, and injustice based on the color of his skin in the 1900’s is in any way similar to a homosexual’s issues. I see one as a choice, the other not. However, I will say this. Insofar as civil rights apply to the entire population, they are fair. I can see a time when the Hispanic population might be more than the ‘White’ population and those civil rights would be beneficial to ‘white’ people. But tell me how does ‘hate crime’ legislation, specifically written for homosexuals, in any way benefit the population in general? Would my family have any such recourse if an atheist killed me, a Christian? Would that be a hate crime too?

    Second, I think you paint to broadly the Christian response to homosexuals. The objection I have to homosexuals is very simply that they want some sort of equality in the Church that cannot happen. The homosexual who refuses to repent and come under the Lordship of Christ simply cannot be a Christian any more than a thief who refuses to repent and come under the Lordship of Christ can be. This is the objection that I think most Christians have: homosexuals simply refuse to acknowledge that Christ Jesus has the Right and authority to determine our behavior and control our conduct. They refuse to repent, they refuse to acknowledge that their conduct is sinful, that they need to change.

    Third, you keep referring to ‘innuendo, lies, etc,’ and ‘stirring up fabrications.’ I’m not fabricating anything by simply voicing what I perceive to be a a legitimate concern that many Christians have. I seriously cannot imagine why this conversation is even taking place. How many ‘hate-crimes’ can you rattle off? Can you name any more hate crimes than I can name pastors who have been punished for preaching?

    My concern is not what is, but what might be, because I have common sense to see that these things, while they start out with the best of intentions, typically lead in directions no one had ‘foreseen.’ Does that make sense? You think it won’t happen. I guarantee it will eventually. This is not lying, slander or over the top innuendo. This is a legitimate concern. I don’t know how we can be ‘misleading the flock’ when we point out things like Folsom Stree Fair. Homosexuality is what homosexuality is: Wrong, sinful, chosen. Homosexuals are not people we should affirm in their sin, but sinners who need the grace of Jesus Christ.

    Finally, I’m not terribly concerned about ‘Christian Political Action Groups.’ The real work of faith is done in the thousands of unnoticed, unnamed Churches that line every main street in every town. Since you have no possible way of measuring what every preacher is preaching in every church at any given time, it is unfair for you to paint all of christendom with the same brush. We are not all liars, or propagandists, or slanderers, or haters. Most of us are people waiting anxiously on the the Lord Jesus to come back and redeem us. Our job is to preach the whole Gospel until he comes.

    That’s all I have on this subject, good luck in your search. I think you are genuinely concerned about this, but I seriously think you are misguided on a couple of very key points. If you really want to make a difference, then I would suggest you follow my example: Love your neighbor as yourself. If all of Christendom is wrong, then set the example by being the one who is not. Work with an AIDS hospice or something. Preach the truth in season and out of season.

    Godspeed,

    jerry

  17. PS–if you are seeing ‘too much hate among Christians’ then I think you are not looking at the right Christians. Then again, if you are concerned that Christians take the logs out of their eyes, I might ask what logs you also need removing. Jesus gave that line to all Christians, not just the ones you disagree with or find fault with. I don’t think you really know any Christians if all you see is hate.

    jerry

  1. 1 A New Kind of Lawsuit « Life Under the Blue Sky: The View From Below

    […] while back, I was assured by several readers that a certain House Bill H.R. 1592 and its Senate companion S.B. 1105 would in no way infringe upon the free speech rights of Christians who believe homosexuality is a […]




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