Browse posts tag by homosexuality
HOWARD  SNYDER’s HOMOSEXUALITY AND THE CHURCH

HOWARD SNYDER’s HOMOSEXUALITY AND THE CHURCH

June 30, 2019 By dwayman

In 2014 Howard Snyder wrote a “personal and pastoral” reflection on homosexuality.  It is presented here as another ingredient to our ongoing conversation.

 

Homosexuality and the Church:

Personal and Pastoral Reflections

 

Howard A. Snyder

 

[Foreword]

 

One of the foundational problems with the contemporary discussion on same sex marriage is that the church has lost the debate before the first exchange of ideas takes place. This is because the underlying presuppositions of the dialogue are never properly disclosed.  For example, the actual biblical teaching regarding marriage is utterly incomprehensible to the wider culture.   If you read Christian interactions about same sex marriage, it is clear that the church has largely abandoned the notion that there is a divine design to marriage.  In short, we have a priori accepted the culture’s view of marriage; namely, that it is a legal arrangement which allows two people to fulfill each other’s emotional and sexual needs and desires.  Personal choice and autonomous notions of personal fulfillment are just a few of the values which fit neatly within the larger utilitarian framework of the modern understanding of marriage.   Today, marriage has become commodified along with the rest of the culture, as even social relationships are often reduced to measurable economic and emotional exchange units.

In contrast, the Scriptures posit a covenantal view of marriage which is unitive,

UMC Keeps Tradition’s Sexual Ethics

UMC Keeps Tradition’s Sexual Ethics

February 27, 2019 By

When Wesley looked for truth he went first to Scripture and then to Tradition, Reason and Experience.  In the February 26, 2019 vote of the United Methodist Church concerning the ordination and marriage of avowed homosexual and lesbian people, the majority of delegates voted in agreement with the almost 2000 years of Church tradition as well as the Wesleyan biblical interpretation and tradition in what was called the Traditional Plan.

One of the reasons the denomination stayed connected to the “traditional” theology and practice, passing by a small majority, was the presence of the global church and its delegates.  In this speech by the Rev. Dr. Jerry P. Kulah, Dean of Gbarnga School of Theology, United Methodist University in Liberia, he states in clear unequivoacal and civil manner that the church in Africa will stay true to historic Methodism and “not a culturally liberal, church elite, in the U.S.”

Dr. Kulah says in part:

“Another road invites us to reaffirm Christian teachings rooted in Scripture and the church’s rich traditions.

It says, “All persons are individuals of sacred worth, created in the image of God,” that “All persons need the ministry of the Church,” and that “We affirm that God’s grace is available to all.”

It grounds our sexual ethics in Scripture when it says, the UM Church does “not condone the practice of homosexuality and considers [it] incompatible with Christian teaching.”

While “we commit ourselves to be in ministry for and with all persons,” we do not celebrate same-sex marriages or ordain for ministry people who self-avow as practicing homosexuals.

81 WORDS: HOW THE DESIGNATION OF HOMOSEXUALITY WAS REMOVED FROM THE DIAGNOSTIC STATISTICAL MANUAL

81 WORDS: HOW THE DESIGNATION OF HOMOSEXUALITY WAS REMOVED FROM THE DIAGNOSTIC STATISTICAL MANUAL

December 18, 2018 By

When you live through a seismic cultural change it often catches individuals and nations by surprise.  This occurred in 1973 when the American Psychiatric Association changed the defining of homosexuality from a disease to a dysphoria disorder which was then quietly removed in the succeeding years.  The circumstances surrounding the transition is a combination of activism and gay psychiatrists within the APA rising to the highest and most strategic positions.  In this American Life the granddaughter of the gay psychiatrist who was president-elect of the APA when the change was made explores the personal, political and cultural dynamics which brought about the change.  Although we like to think it was the science that led to the removal of the designation of homosexuality as a DSM disorder it was not.

The story begins with our author, Alix Spiegel, explaining first in 2002 and recently repeated on This American Life on December 16, 2018:

“Alix Spiegel

This is the story of a definition, three single sentences composed of 81 words. It’s the story of how this particular definition became another definition, nine sentences, composed of 237 words.

Now according to some parties, this change from 81 words to 237 words liberated an entire category of humanity. According to other parties, it undermined the basic family unit, compromised the scientific authority of psychiatry, and quote, “tampered with the basic code and concept of life.”

Now,

RAVI ZACHARIAS on the CHRISTIAN VIEW OF HOMOSEXUALITY

RAVI ZACHARIAS on the CHRISTIAN VIEW OF HOMOSEXUALITY

January 16, 2018 By

Ravi Zacharias provides a three-fold understanding of homosexuality and Christianity, or more appropriately sexuality and Christianity.  His call to be clear sociologically, theologically and relationally is a very helpful addition to the discussion.  It is a ten minute video.

Click here.

The comments on YOUTUBE provides opportunity to understand the responses of the “autonomous culture” to this area of our lives.

CHASTITY AND HOMOSEXUALITY in CATHOLIC CATECHISM

CHASTITY AND HOMOSEXUALITY in CATHOLIC CATECHISM

May 10, 2017 By

In the Catechism of the Catholic church this is the teaching on Chastity and Same-Sex attracted people.  What do you find that you appreciate about this teaching and what questions does this raise for you:

 

Chastity and homosexuality

2357 Homosexuality refers to relations between men or between women who experience an exclusive or predominant sexual attraction toward persons of the same sex. It has taken a great variety of forms through the centuries and in different cultures. Its psychological genesis remains largely unexplained. Basing itself on Sacred Scripture, which presents homosexual acts as acts of grave depravity,141 tradition has always declared that “homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered.”142 They are contrary to the natural law. They close the sexual act to the gift of life. They do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarity. Under no circumstances can they be approved.

2358 The number of men and women who have deep-seated homosexual tendencies is not negligible. This inclination, which is objectively disordered, constitutes for most of them a trial. They must be accepted with respect, compassion, and sensitivity. Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided. These persons are called to fulfill God’s will in their lives and, if they are Christians, to unite to the sacrifice of the Lord’s Cross the difficulties they may encounter from their condition.

2359 Homosexual persons are called to chastity.

LOVE IS AN ORIENTATION- Andrew Marin

LOVE IS AN ORIENTATION- Andrew Marin

March 26, 2017 By

Love is an Orientation: Elevating the Conversation with the Gay Community by Andrew Marin (InterVarsity, 2009) Waiting for permission to post digest.  What follows is an abbreviated outline. You may purchase the book here.

  1. Forward: I decided to fully immerse myself in the GLBT community. My ultimate goal was to become, as I put it back then, “the most involved gayest straight dude on the face of the earth.”
  2. Chapter 1 We Don’t Need Your God!
    1. They’re just kids: Research now reports that the average age of someone who first realizes  same-sex attraction is thirteen years old….
    2. The battlefield of coming out: Most adolescents experiencing same-sex attraction are too frightened to say anything to anybody for fear of what might happen,
  • What happens on the other side of realization? What happens in the long run to a person who prays the same prayer every night and wakes up every morning not having that prayer answered? … The majority of GLBT people whom I have met over my nine years of being immersed in their community – believers and nonbelievers, black and white, men and women- have told me the same things:  when they first realized their same sex thoughts and attractions they started to pray that God would take those unwanted feelings away.  Even atheists have told me that they were willing to put their unbelief in God aside in the hope that he would make them straight like everyone else…
    1. Preconceived Ideas: …There is an undercurrent of preexisting negative perceptions of Christianity’s traditional belief system
    2. What Can Christians do?: The Christian community is by and large well intentioned
  1. Chapter 2.
WASHED AND WAITING- Wesley Hill

WASHED AND WAITING- Wesley Hill

March 26, 2017 By

Washed and Waiting: Reflections on Christian Faithfulness and Homosexuality by Wesley Hill (Zondervan, 2010). Hill has given permission for this digest.  Much has been omitted from this digest and it is recommended that his book be purchased.  You can purchase the book here.

  1. Introduction: This books is neither about how to live faithfully as a practicing homosexual person nor about how to live faithfully as a fully healed or former homosexual man or woman…This book is about what it means…how practically, a non-practicing but still-desiring homosexual Christian can “prove, live out, and celebrate” the grace of Christ and the power of the Holy Spirit in homosexual terms.  This book is written mainly for those gay Christians who are already convinced that their discipleship to Jesus necessarily commits them to the demanding, costly obedience of choosing not to nurture their homosexual desires, whether through private fantasies or physical relationships with other gay or lesbian people….”There are probably nearly as many Christians with homosexual feelings who do not believe that homosexual sex is right for Christians as there are those who are advocating its acceptance.”…The Christian’s struggle with homosexuality is unique in many ways, but not completely so.  The dynamics of human sinfulness and divine mercy and grace are the same for all of us, regardless of the particular temptations or weaknesses we face.  In my experience the effort to live faithfully as a gay Christian has involved me in three main battles. 
HOMOSEXUALITY AND THE CHRISTIAN – Yarhouse

HOMOSEXUALITY AND THE CHRISTIAN – Yarhouse

March 26, 2017 By

Homosexuality and the Christian, Mark A Yarhouse, PsyD. (Bethany House, 2010)  Permission given by Dr. Yarhouse for this digest – the complete work is excellent and recommended since much has been omitted.  You can purchase it here.

  1. Chapter 1: What does God think about Homosexuality?
    1. Sources of authority: Scripture, Christian Tradition, Reason, Personal Experience.
      1. Scripture: Rather than looking at Bible verses related only to homosexuality, it is important to take a broader look at how God’s Word deals with sexuality as a whole.
        1. Creation: What we see in Genesis is that God created heterosexual marriage as the foundation of the family.  This is affirmed later in the New Testament by Jesus, Paul, and others.  God places the act of sex within the bounds of heterosexual marriage, and Christians should understand sex to be a good thing, something intended by God at creation…. Creation is particularly important because it reveals what life was like before the effects of the fall.
        2. The Fall: At the individual level “being fallen” is probably best understood as a splitting of the will…. Many people struggle with obeying God’s revealed will for sexuality and sexual behavior.   The fall has effected sexuality in many ways that have little to do with homosexuality, and there are a large number of examples of this throughout Scripture….
RESOURCE ON SAME-SEX ATTRATION

RESOURCE ON SAME-SEX ATTRATION

March 26, 2017 By

12/2016  Dr. Denny Wayman

In answer to the request of our Free Methodist family, the Study Commission on Doctrine (SCOD) presents this resource for pastors, parents and parishioners.  The list is certainly not exhaustive and we recognize there is a continuum of opinions and concerns among us as a family of God.  It is not our intention by offering these resources to make them prescriptive, but rather to provide the best recent work so that every pastor, parent and parishioner can be well informed and respond with God’s love rather than with fear or misinformation.  In 2014 Dr. Denny Wayman created a resource in a digested form that, under God’s leadership, provides the same counsel as the majority of authors: God’s love and the guidance of the Holy Spirit are key.  It is available at:  http://fmcusa.org/files/2014/03/Gods-Love-Expressed-Offering-Pastoral-Care-to-LGB-Persons-and-Families.pdf.

In this resource we have explored seven books that present a variety of perspectives and experiences from Christians.  All write from first-hand experience with some bringing their faith in Christ into their same-sex attraction while others bring their professional expertise either as psychologists, practitioners, or researchers.

We would recommend that these books be read in the following order, with the first four being foundational.  However, there may be special interest that would cause a person to go to a specific book first.  Because of this we have provided a comprehensive description of the content of each book.  We thank Dr. Yarhouse and Dr.