interchange and discussion of ideas, especially when open
Hello - Theo here to mention a bit of an update since this piece was authored by cdh -- I'm his administrative assistant here on the Range -- anyway, things are moving at a very rapid pace and in most instances it means advancement for the sodomites and lesbians as they pursue their clearly defined agenda. A key strategy is the employment of dialog, which is mainly taking place within a growing number of church groups. A part of this involves special "groups" organized and commissioned to do "studies" on sexuality, bringing back reports to be considered and voted on by the official body, etc. It's amazing how these "reports" are coming to the conclusion that sodomy and lesbianism aren't so bad after all! So, read on as to what this "dialog" thing can really lead to.
"Dialog" --- that is the word now in the United Methodist Church and in other church groups -- it is happening in other realms of our culture as well! Those advocating the same gender coupling lifestyle have made great strides forward in their quest for acceptance and sanctioning of their lifestyle.
Oh, by the way, notice that the word is spelled "dialog" here on CR's Range -- the above cited dictionary states that it is legal to spell it that way rather than spelling it "dialogue" as it commonly appears -- why take the trouble to add "ue" to the word when it isn't needed
What is wrong with entering into dialog? We have been reminded constantly of the need to quit shouting at each other, to start listening to each other, and to enter into "dialog" with each other.
There are a number of things that are totally out of order in this issue of settling down to engage in dialog sessions.
First, to enter into dialog is to concede that each party has a legitimate position morally, spiritually, and/or ethically. Homosexual persons have been singled out as a special group in the UMC and identified as needing the ministry of the church. It is this group that is aggressively seeking to have the church (as well as the whole of society) accept the same gender coupling lifestyle with part of the strategy being the use of "dialog."
Why do we not then identify other groups as also needing the ministry of the church? For instance, why not adulterers or fornicators? There are quite a few of those around are there not? And they might feel excluded from the church unless we expand our statement to specifically include those persons lest they feel they are not wanted or that they are not welcome at the "table!” However, to be on the safe side, we better add to the list those who enjoy sex with animals, incest practitioners, pornography producers, male and female prostitutes, topless dancers and car wash hostesses, kleptomaniacs, profanity speakers, and …… well, this list could get rather lengthy – in spite of that, we better cover all the bases. But the issue is this – we have got to make sure that all these are made to feel welcome in our churches lest they enter into a campaign and advertise the fact that the UMC is discriminating against them. So we should "dialog" with all these and any other "marginalized" group in need of the ministry of the church, right?
The fact is that homosexual advocates have no more a solid moral foundation upon which to dialog than do the other aforementioned groups.
Second, it has been said that the dialog approach and meeting for discussion is necessary in order to forge "relationships" wherein "evangelicals" and homosexuals (or those advocating the same gender coupling agenda) can sit down together and calmly discuss issues in a spirit of "Christian love" and concern. Why? What is there to discuss? Can anyone point out where God has used the "dialog" approach in dealing with depraved human nature? One might be moved to throw in the Isaiah 1:18 passage in a vain attempt to show God’s willingness to dialog a bit, but close examination will show that the issue is sin and how to get rid of it, with an appeal to do some common sense thinking! The entire context of the “Come now, and let us reason together…” statement comes through loud and clear on the issue of repenting from all sin! Things are so morally corrupt that the political establishment is referred to as the "rulers of Sodom."
What has been the constant theme throughout the centuries as God has confronted a rebel human race? Basically a Jeremiah, for instance, was told to go to the Lord’s house, the king’s house, or into the city of Jerusalem and call for repentance! There is never a prolonged effort to negotiate or dialog on the part of the prophets – always the same call to repent and bring oneself into full compliance with God’s holy standards for human behavior and relationships.
In the New Testament there is no evidence of a dialog approach either. Did John the Baptist use it, or did Peter say to those thousands on the day of Pentecost, “Folks, let’s all sit down and dialog about your moral and spiritual shortcomings?” And how about Jesus’ dialog approach in Matthew 23? That has got to be a classic on how to win with the "dialog!" And there is that interesting statement by Paul in Acts 17:30 that God now commands all persons everywhere to repent! And just what is supposed to happen when people repent? There was a time long ago when repent meant to quit sinning, ask God's forgiveness, receive Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord, and by His grace live in obedience to His holy standards, including a life of sexual purity! But as someone a few decades ago suggested, repentance seems to be the lost doctrine in the United Methodist Church with too many holding to a deadly assumption that one can name the name of Jesus Christ and chart out a lifestyle that is considered quite acceptable as long as it "feels good" and we loudly declare a questionable "commitment" under a ragged banner upon which is inscribed a very hazy out-of-focus word called "love!"
Third, it has been said that we must develop "specialized" ministries to various groupings of people, including those of a "different sexual orientation." Again, one must ask why this must be. What evidence do we have that Paul developed a "specialized ministry" at Corinth? Did he not remind those people of what hopeless moral wreckage they used to be and what miraculous new persons they had become when he said in 1 Corinthians 6:9-11,“Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God.”Did Paul not believe that there is an indescribable power inherent in the faithful proclamation of the Gospel of Jesus Christ sufficient to transform sinners, no matter the depths of sin into which they may have sunk, and confirmed that when he said in 1 Corinthians 1:17-21,“For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel, not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of no effect. For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. For it is written: ‘I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent.’ Where is the wise? Where is the scribe? Where is the disputer of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of this world? For since, in the wisdom of God, the world through wisdom did not know God, it pleased God through the foolishness of the message preached to save those who believe.”
The problem is not so much that Jesus Christ cannot save and transform a person as it is that we feel we must "customize" and "tailor" our methods in how we approach sinners, plus bending over backwards to avoid "offending" anyone lest we are guilty of making them feel "excluded!" That coupled with the repugnant attitude shared by many, “I’m not really a sinner and I haven’t done anything wrong!” creates a blend which is as attractive as a rotting deer carcass lying along a Pennsylvania highway on a hot July day! For you non-PA residents, come through our state in July or August and you will likely see a number of these – just pull up beside that deer that’s been dead about 10 days or so, roll down your windows and do a strong inhale exercise! That’s a sweet fragrance compared to the odor produced by the "dialog" business in the church these days!
Fourth, the Book of Discipline of the United Methodist Church already covers the issue of ministry to ALL persons so that singling out a special group to which we are supposed to "minister" is totally unnecessary. Read carefully Part IV entitled "The Ministry of All Christians" beginning on P. 107 of the 1996 BOD! It’s all there – if we have experienced the transforming power of Jesus Christ, then we will be a witness as well as in ministry and outreach to ALL persons, no matter who they are or where they may be!
Fifth, the issue really comes down to the matter as to whether the United Methodist Church will ultimately accept same gender coupling and sanction it as a legitimate lifestyle as it now does in the sanction and blessing of heterosexual marriage. Those individuals and groups who are advancing the agenda of the same gender coupling lifestyle have been quite successful in recent years. For instance they have:
- successfully rallied powerful support in the mainstream media culture via "entertainment" programming and favorable or sympathetic "news" reporting
- successfully won the upper hand in the "war" of words so that those who resist the "agenda" are instantly and automatically branded with such negative labels as "homophobic," "gay bashers," "unloving," "mean spirited," "unchristian," "bigoted," etc!
- successfully launched a significant "propaganda campaign" that would make A. Hitler's propaganda minister, J. Goebels, envious by the use of terms and descriptions that decry the tranforming power of Jesus Christ in providing deliverance for the people caught in this destructive way of life! Check a clear example at We Will Not Be Changed!
- successfully employed the use of significant "identifiers" coupled with the name, Christian, so as to further persuade doubters that 2 "he's" or 2 "she's" living together or simply associating and indulging in sexual activity is an acceptable if not desirable thing under the guise of something called "committed relationship!" So we now commonly hear references of "gay Christians" or "lesbian Christians" or "bisexual Christians" or "transgendered Christians."Ok, if that's the name of the game, how about "fornicating Christians" or "adulterous Christians" or "bestiality Christians" or "thieving Christians" or "pornographic Christians" or "idolotrous Christians" or "cussing Christians" or "filthy story Christians" or "brawling Christians" or "wife beating Christians" or "murdering Christians?" Surely no one would object as we expand the list a bit so that beyond saying, "I'm a gay Christian and I practice a gay lifestyle with my partner (or lover)," we should accept one who says, "I'm a fornicating Christian and I enjoy encounters with other women -- we are all committed to each other and this kind of life!" or "I'm an adulterous Christian and I and my best friend's wife are committed to loving each other!" or "I'm a bestiality Christian and my German Shepherd and I are committed to each other!" or "I'm a wife beating Christian and my wife and I still love each other in spite of this little hang up I have!" or "I'm a thieving Christian but I believe in Jesus Christ in spite of my practice to take things that do not really belong to me!" So let's be fair, shall we? If it is proper to use the term "gay Christian" or "lesbian Christian" let's really be inclusive and apply the labels all the way across the board -- no more limiting the use of the word "Christian" -- be sure to put an identifier in front of it so we know for sure what kind of "Christian" we are dealing with! Do we dare to ever use the term "holy Christian?"
- successfully enlisted the support of heterosexuals in their cause, including very influential political and religious leaders around the world -- consider these examples:
- the United States Senate has expanded the "hate crime" code to include crimes against gays, which means it is a federal offense to do an act of violence against a homosexual -- a violent act committed against a heterosexual by a homosexual will not be considered a "hate crime!" -- note the case of Jesse D. just below! And from the "Just Wondering Department" -- do you suppose Almighty God might be hauled into court on basis of this new U.S. legislation because of what He did to Sodom and Gomorrah some years ago -- or will the statute of limitations get Him off the hook on this?
- quite a number of United Methodist bishops are jumping on the same gender coupling bandwagon as it throttles up in the quest for universal acceptance in U.S. society, and a number of them have been "converted" -- see UMC Episcopal Endorsement of Same Gender Coupling!
- successfully manipulated and capitalized on "hate crime" incidents involving violent acts committed against homosexuals with mass news media giving prolonged and detailed coverage to such incidents. In contrast there was no such coverage of a similar nature when 13 year old Jesse Dirkhising of Arkansas was brutally raped, tortured, and murdered by 2 homosexual lovers! Mass media spokespersons did some real fancy footwork when confronted on this one! But then we’ve been aware of blatant media bias for a long time haven’t we? And that bias is sharply slanted in favor of the same gender coupling agenda for our churches and our society.
- successfully gained the support of such groups as the American Psychological Association, American Psychiatric Association, American Academy of Pediatrics with such groups releasing pseudo-scientific information which condemns what is referred to as "reparative therapy" as applied to homosexual persons – translated, this means that Christians, or anyone for that matter, are not to try to change a homosexual person’s lifestyle so that they become a heterosexual because it will do great harm and damage to them!
- successfully made great advances in the nation's public school systems in promoting the "acceptance" of the same gender coupling lifestyle by means of certain defined strategies being pursued -- see Top 10 Strategies Used by Homosexual Activists in Schools -- for a graphic and shocking example see A Massachusetts' "Indoctrination" Experience for Youth! WARNING! This is graphic, but actually happened and a free tape is available with details from The Massachusetts News. Sorry -- it appears that the tape is unavailable at the present time!
- successfully made great gains in company/corporation policies wherein same gender couples are being granted benefits that are the same as those granted to heterosexual married couples -- see Corporate Family Policies
- successfully made great advancement in being recognized and accepted as "normal" in political structures. The state of Vermont has passed legislation that comes as close to recognizing the legality of same gender "unions" without actually calling them marriages as is possible in the civil realm! And at least one UMC bishop gave enthusiastic support to all this -- take a look at Susan's Delight!
Perhaps all this is well summed up in a repugnant "proclamation" by Bill Clinton during the time he was the president of the United States:A proclamation: “Gay and lesbian Americans have made important and lasting contributions to our Nation in every field of endeavor…Today, more openly gay and lesbian individuals serve in senior posts throughout the Federal Government than during any other Administration. To build on our progress, in 1998 I issued an executive Order to prohibit discrimination in the Federal civilian workforce based on sexual orientation, and my Administration continues to fight for the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, which would outlaw discrimination in the workplace based on sexual orientation…With each passing year the American people become more receptive to diversity…Now, therefore, I, William J. Clinton, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim June 2000 as Gay and Lesbian Pride Month. In witness whereof…in the year of our Lord two thousand and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and twenty-fourth. William J. Clinton”
In light of the above "proclamation" and its ramifications, it is wise to keep in mind a statement from One Who is of greater Authority than a lowly president of a nation –“ And He said to them, “You are those who justify yourselves before men, but God knows your hearts. For what is highly esteemed among men is an abomination in the sight of God.”
Things certainly haven't improved under the Bush administration -- George Bush has appointed a number of open avowed homosexuals to high level positions in his administration, including the high rank of ambassador!
Dialog, anyone, now that we Americans are more receptive to "diversity?"
For more on this subject, go to Doing Dialog -- A Primer on How It Works!
And a PS by Paul as told to some believers at Corinth:
“But I fear, lest somehow, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, so your minds may be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.”
2 Corinthians 11:3 (NKJV)
Do not be unequally yoked together with unbelievers. For what fellowship has righteousness with lawlessness? And what communion has light with darkness? And what accord has Christ with Belial? Or what part has a believer with an unbeliever? And what agreement has the temple of God with idols? For you are the temple of the living God. As God has said: “I will dwell in them and walk among them. I will be their God, and they shall be My people.” Therefore “Come out from among them and be separate, says the Lord. Do not touch what is unclean, and I will receive you. I will be a Father to you, and you shall be My sons and daughters,” says the LORD Almighty. Therefore, having these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.
2 Corinthians 6:14-7:1 (NKJV)
Your words were found, and I ate them, and Your word was to me the joy and rejoicing of my heart; for I am called by Your name, O LORD God of hosts. I did not sit in the assembly of the mockers, nor did I rejoice; I sat alone because of Your hand, for You have filled me with indignation. Why is my pain perpetual and my wound incurable, which refuses to be healed? Will You surely be to me like an unreliable stream, as waters that fail? Therefore thus says the LORD: “If you return, then I will bring you back; you shall stand before Me; If you take out the precious from the vile, you shall be as My mouth. Let them return to you, but you must not return to them. And I will make you to this people a fortified bronze wall; and they will fight against you, but they shall not prevail against you; for I am with you to save you and deliver you,” says the LORD.
Jeremiah 15:16-20 (NKJV)
“For My eyes are on all their ways; they are not hidden from My face, nor is their iniquity hidden from My eyes. And first I will repay double for their iniquity and their sin, because they have defiled My land; they have filled My inheritance with the carcasses of their detestable and abominable idols.”
Jeremiah 16:17,18 (NKJV)
Another significant issue few have considered!
There has been the free use of the terms "gay and lesbian Christians" in recent years. The use of these terms, which same gender couplers have adopted, has already been discussed above, but there is something in the Christian experience and the miracle of the new birth transformation that seems to have been lost in this issue. And that is what God does in the transformation of a sinner's life (whatever the nature of the sin has been, sexual or a host of other sins ranging from greed, gluttony, addiction, and stealing to hatred, murder, etc) -- and that is the new covenant in Jesus Christ -- it is specifically mentioned that God's laws will be WRITTEN in the heart and mind of those who repent and obediently follow Christ as Lord and Savior!And the Holy Spirit also witnesses to us; for after He had said before, "This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, says the LORD: I will put My laws into their hearts, and in their minds I will write them," then He adds, "Their sins and their lawless deeds I will remember no more."
--- Hebrews 10:15-17 (NKJV)
Now for THE QUESTION -- how can you continue to willfully disobey the moral laws of a holy God, if under the terms of the new covenant He says He is going to put His laws into the believer's heart and write them into his/her mind? Yes, I already know -- the same gender couplers try to smokescreen the law issue in the OT by mixing the ceremonial and ritual laws concerning clean and unclean foods with the eternal moral laws! And yes, if the prohibition against eating pig meat were a part of the moral law, then Christians would not be eating pig meat today! The promise of the new covenant and details of the "writing" of the laws into the heart of believers, rather than trying to adhere to an external code of conduct, is mentioned clearly in the OT prophets of Jeremiah and Ezekiel -- check it out and see for yourself!
Express yourself in a survey on The United Methodist Church and Homosexuality -- you have options in your answers!
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