Burch: One step forward ...

Thursday, June 21, 2012 at 10:05pm
By Michael R. Burch

It’s nice to see the Southern Baptist Convention, which is headquartered here in Nashville, take a tentative step into the 21st century by electing its first African-American president, the Rev. Fred Luter Jr.

However, this seems to be a case of  “one step forward, two steps back” because immediately after the SBC elected Luter, it issued two proclamations that suggest the Southern Baptist church is still firmly rooted in the Dark Ages. One resolution targets homosexuals for discrimination, while the second demonstrates the SBC’s intolerance for religions other than Christianity.

Ironically, black Southern Baptist pastors seem to be among the leaders of the movement to disenfranchise homosexuals by denying them fully equal rights. For instance, Dwight McKissic called it an “unfair comparison” for gays to demand the same rights as African-Americans. According to him, “They’re equating their skin with my skin.” But what happened to the proposition that all human beings are created equal, whether the differences are merely skin deep, or extend to brain cells and body chemistry? And if Jesus had homosexuals at the top of his priority list, as the SBC seems to believe, why did he never mention homosexuality himself, anywhere in the Bible?

The Southern Baptist church parted ways with its northern cousins over the issue of slavery, 167 years ago. Now the SBC seems to be parting ways with most of the modern world. In retrospect, conservative Christians of yore were obviously wrong about many things, including slavery, the need to burn women at the stake or drown them for being “witches,” the Earth being flat, etc. Isn’t it obvious that the same hidebound thinking that plagued Christianity in its dark past continues to plague some Christians today, resulting in bigotry and intolerance?

The SBC’s problems adjusting to modern times are also demonstrated by its resolution authorizing an optional name change for its churches. The SBC just approved, by a narrow vote of 2,446 to 2,232, a much-debated proposal that provides affiliated churches the option of describing themselves as “Great Commission Baptists.”

The great commission was for Christians to “go into the world and preach the gospel to all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost.” The word “gospel” means “good news” or “glad tidings.” If the great commission was to spread the good news that Jesus opened the gates of heaven, and that he taught the need for compassion and justice in this life, few people would quibble with the great commission. However, what the Southern Baptists and other similar churches teach is not so positive. According to them, heaven is reserved for heterosexual Christians only, and everyone else goes to hell, which would seem to make the Father, Son and the Holy Spirit intolerant homophobes.

Jesus died around A.D. 30, and much of the world would remain undiscovered until 1492, so the “great commission” raises a perplexing question: What happened to all the people who lived and died not believing in Jesus, because they had never heard of him?

If people who never heard of Jesus died and woke up in a hell they knew nothing about, for not believing in someone they had never heard of, how could God be considered loving, wise or just?

Conversely, if only people who have heard of Jesus go to hell for not believing in him, then the worst possible thing anyone can possibly do is mention the name “Jesus” to anyone else, since the mere mention of his name flings wide the gates of hell.

Whether there is a God, or a heaven, is of course a matter of faith. But I have a hard time imagining a bigoted, intolerant heaven. I find it hard to believe that a compassionate man like Jesus would banish the saints of other religions to hell, while saving Christian slave owners and inquisitors who burned “heretics” and “witches” at the stake.

When so much remains in doubt, why not give the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit the benefit of the doubt?

Michael R. Burch is a Nashville-based editor and publisher of Holocaust poetry and other “things literary” at www.thehypertexts.com.

106 Comments on this post:

By: dargent7 on 6/22/12 at 4:43

The comparison of gay rights to that of African Americans is so perfect, yet this idiot cannot stand the thought.
How about women's right's?
Anyway, aren't these guys the ones who are bring back the snake charming to your local pew?
The whole notion and concept that Christianity is the ONLY way to Heaven or God is insane.
Buddists, Hindu, Tao, Shinto, Zen, etc. have so much more on the ball than your average Christian.
Look no further than GW Bush, who as a reformed, "born again", launched two wars killing hundreds of thousands.
He and his cabinent didn't even count the bodies. I believe he and Cheney were the Bible's Anti-Christ but if a nut like Romney gets the keys he could whip up WW III in a hurry.

By: Loner on 6/22/12 at 5:06

Great letter, Mike Burch; you raised many great questions....not many are answerable, of course.

This Rev. Luter, the new SBC honcho must be an Uncle Tom...along the lines of Clarence Thomas or Condi Rice, I suppose. Another Michael Steele?

The Southern white bigots who belong to the Confederate-sympathizing Southern Baptists can point to this oreonic black holyman and say, with smug certitude, "We elected Luter, now call us racists."

Tokenism is a popular ploy used by institutional bigots with some success. The SBC is using the tactic, but their track record is so damning, that only fools would believe that the SBC has actually reformed itself.

I can't decide who is more despicable, the white Christian bigots or the Uncle Toms who become their high-profile token leaders.

By: Loner on 6/22/12 at 5:28

Darge, Romney has promised to "call my friend Bibi Netanyahu", the Israeli PM, and ask him what he wants the US to do, should a crisis arise in the region.

Here is a snippet from the NYT, dated April 7 of this year:

"In a telling exchange during a debate in December, Mr. Romney criticized Mr. Gingrich for making a disparaging remark about Palestinians, declaring: “Before I made a statement of that nature, I’d get on the phone to my friend Bibi Netanyahu and say: ‘Would it help if I say this? What would you like me to do?’..." (end snippet)

Mitt Romney and Bibi are old friends from way back and Mitt has promised to subcontract US foreign policy in the ME to Israel.....we are already doing that, of course, but Romney would take us out of the closet and put the relationship out in the open.

The nuclear-scofflaw Jewish State in Palestine calls the shots, the USA follows their lead...a President Romney would make this US-as-vassal-state relationship official.

The neocons and the Israel-loving born-again American Christians will be pooling their resources and pulling the lever for this Jewish wannabe...Mormons consider themselves members of the lost tribes....with a Mormon in the White House, the USA becomes another Israeli occupied territory.

By: Rasputin72 on 6/22/12 at 5:50

Mike Burch, Don't you know that it is blasphemy to ask a logical question about things you find hard to believe when it comes to religion. You should know the answer to any of these questions is, "You are going to hell" for even thinking that,much less asking the question?

By: dargent7 on 6/22/12 at 6:06

The problem with people's fath, ie., religion, is that it forms a basis for their actions.
The Islamic jihadists flew 4 planes into buildings, thinking they're doing Al'lah's work and will be rewarded with 72 virgins, after they kill as many "devils" as possible..
Any sane person in America looks at that paradigm and says, "What the F***?"
But, GW Bush was "told by the Lord" to bring democracy to the Middle East.
Look how crazy that one is. He is personally responsible for the killing of thousands.
Or, Christians who want to cut off welfare, Foodstamps, all forms of gov't assistance to fellow Americans.
People hear voices and think it's Jesus talking to them.
Pat Robertson made a fortune making others' believe he talked straight to Christ.

By: Loner on 6/22/12 at 6:14

Darge has touched upon the common flaw of all religions on this planet...the idea that the ends justify the means....praise the Lord and pass the ammunition.

As a civilizing force, organized religion is highly over-rated.

Holy Wars Suck.

By: yogiman on 6/22/12 at 6:48

All wars suck, Loner. Especially to the ones on the front line.

By: yogiman on 6/22/12 at 7:07

You're obviously an Obama fan, Loner, using religion as your reason. Or do you just hate Romney because his faith is so different from yours?

May I offer the differences between Mitt Romney and Barry Soetoro aka Barack Obama in running for that office just based on what I have read about both of them recently?

Number one is Romney is running for the office legally, Obama is not, therefore, he is ineligible to legally hold the office.

Romney was raised in a family as a Mormon, and is, a Mormon, the religion of his preference. Don't you believe he's as entitled to his religion as you are to yours?

Obama was raised in a family as a Muslim, a faith that doesn't allow you to change your faith. Has he? If so, how? He was also raised in a family of communists. The fact many of his "friends" are communist today should make a free feeling American wonder who his "friends" are.

Romney has shown a great knowledge of business experiences and has became a multimillionaire using it, Obama has only shown he knows how to spend our money. Need him to spend more we don't have?

Any more similarities, or differences in running for OUR office?

By: govskeptic on 6/22/12 at 7:18

Not surprised the SBC is the subject of today's rant by this christian/religion hating
author, and his southern hating "Soul Brother" in the north land. The trash
talking democratic party members think and mention often that any member
of the African-American community that has a conservative religious
thought or social position is an Uncle Tom! That position will never change
as that would be a treat to a few votes that are always "desperately" needed,
and something that must not be allowed to spread!

Yes, Rev. Fred Luter, Jr., who served the past year as second in command,
is a great step forward. SBC now is in 17 states, and the name change is
as excellent first step toward a more national convention. While they may
never have a message to fit many of our posters, I for one wish them well!

By: BenDover on 6/22/12 at 7:35

Burch misses the mark again... telling other people what they should believe and equating homosexuality with a civil right.

I'm for gay marriage too but running around telling everyone "YOU'RE AND IDIOT!" is no way to advance the cause.

The religious, social and cultural traditions of our Southern Baptist heritage have served and are serving our cities and communities well. In an age where basic morality is exchanged by a moral relativity and society is in a free-fall of self-interested decadence it is the acme of arrogance to hold contempt for the diminishing voices of traditional values that argue otherwise.

In truth we have no idea where the liberal ideal of 'do whatever you want without any guilt, shame or consequence' will lead this society; but by most every indication this progression of existential nihilism is doing far more harm than good.

By: pswindle on 6/22/12 at 7:53

Yogi,
You must read the Book of Mormans! After you read it, let me know if you think that it is a religion or a cult. Hopefully, it will open your eyes to the truth. But again, you can't open your eyes to President Obama.

By: Kosh III on 6/22/12 at 8:02

Ben

We've always had moral relativism; Abraham married his sister. It was part of the culture and acceptable. Funny how those who rant against "moral relativity" never condemn Abraham.

The Baptists and others make gay-bashing almost a creedal mandate, yet they are stunningly silent on opposing those things which the Bible does clearly reject.
"I hate divorce, says the Lord." Yet Rev Charles Stanley is a former SBC President, his books and crap are big sellers at their bookstores and he is DIVORCED.

Jesus said if you divorce for any reason and remarry, you commit adultery. Yet Newt, Reagan, Betty Ford, Rush and others divorce and remarry and nary a peep of complaint.

And what exactly has "served us well" from the SBC? The fact that for years the SBC Pastor was also the local KKK leader? That the SBC fought tooth and nail against Civil Rights and continues to do so? Their subjection to inferior status for women? Their attempts to "steal, kill and destroy" gay citizens?

They clearly have forgotten that we are commanded to "love one another" and "judge not."
They have also ignored the most basic civic value of our society: equal rights.

Jesus said it the best: "Woe unto you...hypocrites...."

By: dargent7 on 6/22/12 at 8:03

It's The Book of Mormon. By Joseph Smith. Just like L. Ron Hubbard. Just like.

By: yogiman on 6/22/12 at 8:05

You're right, pswindle, I can't open my eyes to "President Obama"..., because they are wide open and have been from the beginning and I'll repeat: We do not have a legal President Obama. We have a usurper in office.

I'll ask one more time: Why has he refused to prove his legal status? And don't give me that false birth certificate crap he showed.

Call anyone's religious beliefs as their cult or religion. I'll still favor a man running for the president's office legally over one running illegally.

By: Kosh III on 6/22/12 at 8:09

Book of Mormon, by Solomon Spaulding.

By: yogiman on 6/22/12 at 8:26

Are you reading something different than I, dargent7? I read Mitt Romney's father was born in Mexico to American citizen parents. He was an American citizen at birth.

Mitt was born in the USA to American citizen parents... both of them.

Why his grandfather was in Mexico is irrelevant.

We really don't know where 'Barack Obama' was born, do we? Barack Obama was adopted by an Indonesian stepfather to give him Indonesian citizenship so he could go to school in Indonesia. But it all boils down to the point: If Barack Obama [Sr.] is his father, he could only be born as a dual-citizen, and that ain't natural born. But if Frank Davis is perhaps his father and he was born in Hawaii, yep, he was a natural born citizen. But he lost that citizenship when his mother married the Indonesian and he was adopted by Lolo Soetoro.

Further: Why was advertised from 1991 to 2007 as being born in Kenya and raised in Indonesia and Hawaii? Why did that ad revert to his birth place as Hawaii in 2007? Could it be because he got into the political races then? Me thinks so.

By: Sherwood80 on 6/22/12 at 8:32

There is a problem here - the Southern Baptist Convention is made up of literally, thousands of believers in the Lord Jesus Christ, who live their lives according to their best interpretations of the Bible and yet, the Convention is operated as thought it was basic on the techniques of the Mafia.

Not that they kill others, but they seem to kill the spirit in many of their own by allowing the voices of people like Richard Land to represent them.

Now that they have turned their back on their heritage by electing a person of color to represent them, the rest of us will continue to pray that he truly does represent all that is faithful and true about the nature of our faith.

By: yogiman on 6/22/12 at 8:32

dargent7,

Let me bring one more point: If Romney's father was born in Mexico to an American father and a Mexican mother, would his father be an American citizen, or a Mexican citizen? Where did you get your heritage; from your father, or your mother? Why is your official name d' Argent (sorry if I spelled it wrong)?

By: BenDover on 6/22/12 at 8:40

I didn't say I agree with them Kosh. I said I respect their right to disagree with me.

I have made the same arguments before that you are making today. I think that's the proper approach to try to persuade people and advance the cause for gay marriage.

Burch's heavy handed, civil rights minded case that dismisses the whole of their religious tradition... condemning it all on what is a disagreement on a point is quite offensive and, in my opinion, destructive to his own cause unless it is his cause to polarize rather than court.

People who sit in these institutions are not of a single mind and many see distinctions not emphasized by the church doctrine. But Burch sees everyone but himself as mindless idiots and best I can tell there's at least one book he could see great merit in burning.

Paul tells us in Romans 2, immediately after his criticism of sins of homosexuality (et al) in Romans 1 that we are not to Judge. A Baptist preacher who reads this and understands homosexuality as a biblical sin, though, is in no way wrong for disagreeing with performing a ceremony that sanctifies under God a relationship he understands biblically to be sinful.

Emphasis of this sin over others can be substantially misguided and I disagree that Jesus (as my study reveals) would resist God's sanctity of a loving relationship... because, as it turns out, every worldly relationship since the fall involves sinners.

This is a point of disagreement and I must admit my knowledge is limited.

Civil Unions are a compromise that most Christians are happy to abide; but the liberal establishment seems bent on forcing the religious community to accept gay marriage as a socially accepted sanctity. This is out of line in my mind because how else are the thresholds of socially sanctioned marriage rightly decided except by the will of society?

By: govskeptic on 6/22/12 at 9:03

Both of Mitt Romney's grandparents were American born citizens that were
living in Mexico temporarily when his father George was born. George was
automatically and by choice an American citizen. This attempt on dozens
of occasions to equate Mitt's lent age with the questions of Obama's is
a pathetic cause by one of our frequent posters to attempt discredit! Hogwash

By: Kosh III on 6/22/12 at 9:17

"I said I respect their right to disagree with me. "

they are free to disagree with me and have any view they wish. My issue is that they
then use the coercive power of the state to compel other people to accept their religious opinion. In other words, they oppose gay people having equal rights and fight to keep them inferior third-class based on their views.

No one is trying to force religious institutions to perform marriages for gay people. T
What is desired is civil marriage just like everyone else with 100% of the same rights butnot religious rites unless they go to a church which does treat gay people as people.

Being married in church has NO legal standing by itself.

Further, Romans 1 does NOT condemn same-sex orientation. It condemns Idolatry. Read the text, read the text in the OT (WisSol chs 13-15) that Paul is drawing from. It is quite plain.

However, it does say "Jonathan your love for me was wonderful. passing the love of women." King David 2Sam 1:26 Queen James Version

By: BenDover on 6/22/12 at 9:38

NAMBLA can make the same minority view argument Kosh... they are just in a substantially smaller minority than other homosexuals.

You have to agree that society gets to decide the thresholds. Otherwise you accept a minority right to the social sanctity of any perversion.

By: jvh2b on 6/22/12 at 9:41

Great Letter Mike.

Ben - I agree that calling people idoits is not the way to win over the moderates on the issue...but lets be real here...the Southern Baptists have their head so far up their hind ends on this one it doesn't matter.

Anything and everything one can say to them will be refuted with some quote in the bible or because 'God' says so. They are masters of circular logic. If one could prove the exsistance of their God without using the bible...I'd consider converting.

So my point being...they ain't coming over...ever. It took them 50 yrs past the racial revolution to get a black man in power.

Might as well get our digs in.

By: yogiman on 6/22/12 at 10:00

But fifty years is only a short time in history, jvh2b. What's the next fifty going to be like? I believe better in some respect, but worse in others.

By: Mike Burch on 6/22/12 at 10:02

Sherwood,

It's good to see you here and I hope you can visit and contribute again in the future.

You make a good point. Just as US politicians don't reflect the values of the majority of Americans, the leaders of the SBC probably don't reflect the values of many Christians on any number of issues.

But the anti-gay bias within Southern Baptist church remains high, as does the idea that "non-Christians cannot be saved," which means billions of other human beings end up in an "eternal hell."

Polls show that the belief in hell and bigotry against gays is on the wane among Americans. Ironically, it seems the last bastion of religious intolerance and bigotry in the US is churches like the Southern Baptists. I wonder what Jesus would say about churches that teach that the saints of other religions will go to "hell"?

By: Mike Burch on 6/22/12 at 10:06

jvh2b,

I think you're right about "circular" but "logic" may be a stretch. The Southern Baptists try to believe contrary things:

God is loving, wise and just, but if you don't believe improvable things, you go to "hell."

Jesus told the parable of the Good Samaritan, but Jesus himself is a hypocrite because he will send the saints of other religions to "hell."

Homosexuality is the worst possible "sin" and yet Jesus never said a word about homosexuality.

... and so on. It is a circular loop, but of illogical rather than logic.

Mike

By: Kosh III on 6/22/12 at 10:13

NAMBLA is irrelevant. No one takes this handful of fringers seriously except those who want to use it's existence as a strawman for bashing gay citizens.

Perversion? The more you talk, the more you show your true feelings. Maybe I should say that anyone who lives in a highrise condo is an idiot. It's about as relevant.
Morality is ever changing,(Abraham and his sister/wife) ethics are not. It is not ethical to deny other citizens the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

By: Mike Burch on 6/22/12 at 10:13

BenDover,

I didn't call anyone "mindless idiots." I have question some people's ability to think clearly and rationally. Jesus never said a word about homosexuality, but conservative Christians seem to have made denying homosexuals fully equal rights a main plank of their program.

Will Jesus send Einstein, Gandhi and the Dali Lama to "hell"? If not, why are Southern Baptists still telling the world, "Jesus saves, BUT only Christians"? If there is any doubt about Jesus being an intolerant homophobe, why does the church remain so adamant that he is?

Is it wrong to question intolerance, bigotry and the discrimination they produce?

Mike

By: BenDover on 6/22/12 at 10:14

Talk about circular. Burch complains about a Hell that he doesn't believe exists... he concerns himself greatly about a damnation of non-believers to a punishment they don't believe in.

All these rationalizations of his self-brilliance are sometimes entertaining.

By: Mike Burch on 6/22/12 at 10:14

Ooops, "questioned"

By: Mike Burch on 6/22/12 at 10:18

Dargent7,

You made a good point. Another "bible believing" president like GWB might be our last. The next war in the Middle East will probably be fought to "protect" the Israeli Injustice Machine. HR4133 just passed by the stunning vote of 411 to 2. It seems to provide Israel with everything it needs to attack Iran, including refueling tankers and bunker-busting bombs. Thanks to fervent American belief in the Bible, it seems we broke away from mad King George, only to bow down to mad King Bibi.

Mike

By: BenDover on 6/22/12 at 10:18

NAMBLA is relevant as the exception that violates the rule. You are saying gays deserve minority status and that marriage is a civil right. I'm simply pointing out that a line must be drawn somewhere on minority views as they affect our society.

By: BenDover on 6/22/12 at 10:20

Where the line is drawn is not a legal matter for a judge it is a socio-cultural matter for the people.

By: Mike Burch on 6/22/12 at 10:24

Kosh,

I agree that hypocrisy is a big part of the problem. Jesus said that thinking about sex is the same as committing adultery. But porn rentals at hotels go UP during Christian conventions. Most Christians have obviously come to believe that they can have sex as they please. If certain types of sex are sinful, they believe such sins can be forgiven. But then why single out non-heterosexuals for special attention?

The hypocrisy is palpable, and just think of the despair children will feel, if they go to such churches, then realize that they are gay? Is being gay an immediate sentence to hell? Do any of the Pharisees who preach this strange gospel of salvation for heterosexuals only have an ounce of compassion for their young victims?

Mike

By: Mike Burch on 6/22/12 at 10:30

BenDover,

You said: "The religious, social and cultural traditions of our Southern Baptist heritage have served and are serving our cities and communities well."

Really?

The Southern Baptist church was formed primarily because of the "religious, social and cultural traditions" of racism and slavery.

The Southern Baptist church remained largely segregated for most of its history, with most white churches having few or no black members.

The Southern Baptist church remains a bastion of bigotry and discrimination against homosexuals, as evidenced by the events of the past few days.

The Southern Baptist church remains intolerant, insisting that only Christians can go to heaven, making God and Jesus intolerant.

Is teaching bigotry and intolerance non-stop for 167 years serving our communities well?

Mike

By: Mike Burch on 6/22/12 at 10:32

govskeptic,

I didn't call Luter or anyone an "Uncle Tom." I simply pointed out the SBC's obvious bigotry against non-heterosexuals and intolerance against other religions.

Mike

By: Mike Burch on 6/22/12 at 10:39

Loner,

I wouldn't call Luter an Uncle Tom or token black, myself. I think the Southern Baptist church probably has made positive strides in race relations. I once attended a local Southern Baptist church that had a racially diverse congregation, and I saw no signs of discernible racism.

But I left the church because its bigotry against GLBTs and intolerance for other religions were palpable. I don't pretend to know if there is a God or a heaven, but I do know that I'm not interested in a bigoted, intolerant heaven myself.

If there is an afterlife, I would rather go where people like Einstein, Gandhi, Twain and Wilde go. Open-minded people are usually much better company that narrow-minded people.

Mike

By: Mike Burch on 6/22/12 at 10:44

Loner,

You said, "Romney has promised to 'call my friend Bibi Netanyahu', the Israeli PM, and ask him what he wants the US to do, should a crisis arise in the region."

But I think what Romney actually said is that he wouldn't even venture an opinion about the Palestinians without having Bibi instruct him what to say. So if someone asked, "Mitt Romney, do Palestinian children really exist and have human rights, meaning that Palestinian children should not be collectively imprisoned and punished in Gaza?" ... Romney would have to call Bibi, who would inform him that Palestinians do not exist as a people, and thus do not have the same rights as Jews.

This idea that Palestinians do not really exist has been stated not only by leading Israeli politicians, such as prime minister Golda Meir, but also by American presidential candidates like Santorum and Gingrich.

Romney would simply take American subservience to King Bibi, to a new level. Rather than just parroting what Israeli prime ministers say, while ignoring our own Declaration of Independence and Constitution, Romney will now allow King Bibi to use the office of the American presidency as a personal mouthpiece.

Mike

By: govskeptic on 6/22/12 at 10:45

Mike: You say it's bigotry to oppose the homosexual lifestyle, I say love
the homosexual, but oppose the act in a respectful manner. The
SBC/Baptist aren't intolerant of other religions, that's the term
some other religions falsely accuse it of. They are, however, believers in
their Holman & King James Bibles and it's teachings, but spreading
the word, without a gun or sword, is a worth mandate that most but
not all try to follow!

By: Kosh III on 6/22/12 at 10:52

Gay people are not an "act." They are humans who, under our Constitution are entitled to the same rights as all other citizens. Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
I don't share the opinions of the SBC but I don't want to force them to accept my views, and they should not use the coercive power of the state to compel relgious conformity upon me or Loner or Yogi or anyone else.
Their insistence that our civil society accept their opinion is the problem.

By: Mike Burch on 6/22/12 at 10:55

Rasputin72,

Yes, I have been informed by a number of wonderfully wise Christians that I will go to hell for not believing that God and Jesus are bigots who favor Jews over Palestinians, homophobes who favor heterosexuals over gays, and so intolerant they will send Einstein and Gandhi to hell, while saving only Christians.

So much for Jesus practicing what he preached, in the parable of the Good Samaritan!

Mike

By: Kosh III on 6/22/12 at 10:56

I can assure you that gay people I know(2 siblings, some nephews etc) do NOT feel any love from the SBC. You can say it all you want but "ye shall know them by their fruit" and this "fruit" of the SBC is rotten; unloving; un-Christian and un-American.

One more point
John's Gospel says that the Holy Spirit will convince(reprove, convict) people of their sin; so all these folks like the above SBC are usurping the role of the Holy Spirit.

By: yogiman on 6/22/12 at 11:28

Question: Much is being said about homosexuality being "normal" today. Is it?

What is thought when a man and woman (possibly married, or just fallen in love) are seen walking down the street showing their love for each other? They're looked at as an odd couple.

But what is seen when two men or two women are walking down that same street showing that same personal acceptance? That's normal?

Not in my young days. So when did it become so acceptable?

I know in my days in service there was homosexuals in service. By the laws back then, they kept it to themselves or if they "exposed" themselves they were discharged. It stayed that way until Bill Clinton passed that rule "don't ask and don't tell". And now, Barry has "opened the door" to homosexuals in service. How long will it be before our services will be combined only with homosexuals? I can't see a normal service person wanting to be in service with "queers".

And by the way, I've never seen a man and woman in a "let's get on the table", honey like the homosexuals show, almost constantly.

By: budlight on 6/22/12 at 11:38

Burch, I tend to believe that the Bible is a direct work from the God who created the universe. Here are some direct passages from the old testament and new testament. One this is for sure, if I'm going to err, I'd rather err on the right side of God. He and he alone works miracles. He worked a miracle in my life and does so in many of the lives of people I know and love.

I do not hate a person because they are of a specific sexual orientation, nor for the color of their skin, nor for anything that I can think of. I try not to "hate". I try to love as much as I can love. BUT having said that, I do detest some people's policies or their lifestyle. But it's not my lifestyle so they don't have to answer to me in the long run. They have to answer to God.

For instance, Obama is using our tax dollars to kill babies. I believe if we took a national vote on "abortion", the majority would vote no. And the majority of the nation would vote NO to gay marriage. And the majority of the nat ion would vote no to age discrimination, and all types of things. At the end of our lives when we meet our God, we will find out who was right or wrong.

Some passages for your consumption:
Romans 1:27 In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed indecent acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their perversion.
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1 Timothy 1:10 for adulterers and perverts, for slave traders and liars and perjurers--and for whatever else is contrary to the sound doctrine
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Genesis 19:5 They called to Lot, "Where are the men who came to you tonight? Bring them out to us so that we can have sex with them."
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Leviticus 20:13 "'If a man lies with a man as one lies with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable. They must be put to death; their blood will be on their own heads.
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Deuteronomy 23:18 You must not bring the earnings of a female prostitute or of a male prostitute into the house of the LORD your God to pay any vow, because the LORD your God detests them both

REMEMBER MIKE: Keep this in the front of your mind, especially if you are a Gay Millitary person. If (and heaven forbid that it happens) you are captured by the Muslims, and you want to stand up to them for your gay rights, you are a dead man (or woman) walking. They hang homosexuals in the Muslim world. And even the Imam at Vanderbilt said it's OK.

If the gay military people want to be so proud of their orientation, why don't they get it stamped on their dog tags and wear it into battle into, let's say Afghanistan? Why? Cause they know that death would be immediate, if not sooner.

Have a nice weekend.

By: jvh2b on 6/22/12 at 11:42

Kosh - I applaud you. Every post on here...just well said. And as one of those awful perverted homos...I thank you.

Mike - I have to give you some credit on the circular illogic... that's pretty good.

Ben - I was with you right up until you said: 'Where the line is drawn is not a legal matter for a judge it is a socio-cultural matter for the people.'

I whole heatedly disagree with you there. Individual humans are intelligent and rational (as a whole). Get a group of humans together and you get scared, panicky, stupid masses willing to believe whatever their self professed leader wants them to. As such, socio-culture has often (if not always) found itself on the wrong side of human rights and equity. Hell, the judiciary is often times the only thing standing between a minority being completely trampled on by that group of morons in the first place.

Besides, your presenting an argument and using NAMBLA as a basis for it. Kinda shreds any credibility you had to begin with. Anyone (other than a pedophile) that thinks any one should be able to enter a legally binding contract with someone/something that can't consent...needs to be locked away. Both society and the judiciary agree on that one. There is no slippery slope argument....the whole thing will end at gay marriage and maybe polygamy (consenting adults and all).

By: Mike Burch on 6/22/12 at 11:47

Kosh,

I agree. My wife Beth became a "second mother" to two boys with a rough family life. When they were 6 years old, she told me that they were both gay. Years later, they "came out" to her, and she just smiled and told them she loved them as much as ever. Why anyone in the 21st century continues to persecute children for being born gay is beyond me. The Southern Baptists were wrong about slavery being the "will of God" and hopefully one day they will open their eyes to the suffering they cause innocent children when they say homosexuals are bound for hell unless they "repent." Human sexuality is not a disease, and it cannot be "cured."

Mike

By: jvh2b on 6/22/12 at 11:48

Bud - I feel I speak for the entire gay community when I say - Blow it out of your god fearing a hole.

Your entire argument is 'Well the Muslims would kill you, so you should be happy we just repress you, and deny basic privileges the rest of us enjoy!' Far from what the Jesus I've read about would advocate for.

Glad you believe in a book of fairy tales. Problem is, in this country, your mythical beliefs stop when it comes in the form of governing everyone else.

By: Mike Burch on 6/22/12 at 11:53

jvh2b,

I think "circular illogic" is a pretty good description of what I saw when I returned to the Southern Baptist church briefly as an adult. Trying to believe two completely contrary things causes the human brain to act like the robot on Lost in Space:

Danger, danger ... that does not compute!

Irrational fears of things that pose no real threat to anyone (such as the fear of gay marriage and the Murfreesboro mosque) might seem silly, except that they cause many people very real pain.

Mike

By: Mike Burch on 6/22/12 at 11:59

Budlight,

You said, "I tend to believe that the Bible is a direct work from the God who created the universe."

Then how do you explain:

Moses, presumably speaking for God in Numbers 31, told his warriors to kill all the captured mothers and their male children and babies, keeping only the virgin girls alive, obviously as sex slaves?

Moses, presumably speaking for God in Exodus 21, told fathers they could sell their own daughters as sex slaves, with the option to buy them back if they didn't please their new masters.

Moses, presumably speaking for God in Deuteronomy 22, commanded parents to stone young girls to death, if they had been raped, or to sell them to their rapists so that they could be raped legally the rest of their lives.

These are just a few of many horrific verses in the Bible. There are others that command the slaughter of entire cities and nations.

Did the Bible come direct to man from a loving, wise, just God ... or did barbaric men at times pretend to speak for God, so that they had licence to rape, rob and slaughter other people?

Mike

By: yogiman on 6/22/12 at 12:04

jvh2b,

It is known there are several different sexual "preferences" to human beings. Hell, even animals as I have seen them on farms.

So a person's sexual desires belong only to them, no one else. So why do so many homosexual advertise their "way of life" in public so much?

Is that advertising publicly for sex? So are they still going to "advertise" if they become legally married? Is homosexual's "advertisement" equal to whore's advertising on the street?