Archive for the ‘Same-Sex Marriage’ Category
By Garrett Haley
Christian News Network
BALTIMORE – Southern Baptist leaders voted overwhelmingly on Tuesday to affirm the biblical model of human sexuality, agreeing that gender identity is solely determined by biological sex and not by ‘one’s self-perception.’
As previously reported, church representatives at the annual Southern Baptist Convention in Baltimore considered a number of items for discussion this week, including the topic of gender identity. While many claim that a person’s gender can differ from one’s sexuality, the Southern Baptists declared just the opposite in a resolution titled “On Transgender Identity.”
“God’s design was the creation of two distinct and complementary sexes, male and female, which designate the fundamental distinction that God has embedded in the very biology of the human race,” the resolution states in part.
“The messengers to the Southern Baptist Convention meeting in Baltimore, Maryland, June 10–11, 2014, affirm God’s good design that gender identity is determined by biological sex and not by one’s self-perception—a perception which is often influenced by fallen human nature in ways contrary to God’s design,” the resolution continues.
LTRP Note: The following news story is posted for informational and research purposes only and not as an endorsement for the content or the source.
By National Public Radio
Fewer jokes and check your facts – those are two of the tips on handling homosexuality shared with Southern Baptist pastors gathered in Nashville [in April 2014].
The country’s largest protestant denomination is holding a first-ever summit on human sexuality this week. The Southern Baptist Convention typically avoids handing down dictates. But on homosexuality, the denomination is starting to get very specific.
“I just think we have to reject redneck theology in all of its forms,” pastor Jimmy Scroggins of West Palm Beach told ministers Monday night. “Let’s stop telling Adam and Steve jokes.”
A panel of five church leaders also told preachers to stop spreading falsehoods, like gay people were abused as children.
Overall, Greg Belser of Clinton, Miss., said pastors have to take particular care on this hot button topic. Click here to continue reading.
By Garrett Haley
Christian News Network
BELFAST, Northern Ireland – A 75-year-old Irish preacher was subjected to a police probe after he condemned Islam in a sermon and was accused of ‘hate mongering.’
James McConnell, pastor of the Whitewell Metropolitan Church in North Belfast, Ireland, discussed the religion of Islam during an evening sermon on Sunday, May 18th. During the sermon, McConnell denounced Islam and said the contrast between it and Christianity is stark.
“The God we worship and serve this evening is not Allah,” he proclaimed, according to a video of his sermon. “The Muslim god—Allah—is a heathen deity. Allah is a cruel deity. Allah is a demon deity.”
McConnell then criticized the “foolish” British government for attempting to appease Muslims financially, saying Islam is “a doctrine spawned in hell.” He also noted that Christians around the world are persecuted for their faith by the “fanatical worshipers” of Allah.
According to the Belfast Telegraph, McConnell’s remarks were inspired by the current plight of Meriam Ibrahim—a Christian woman in Sudan. As previously reported, Ibrahim was sentenced to hang after she was convicted of apostasy for refusing to deny her Christian faith and convert to Islam.
Following McConnell’s May 18th sermon, the Police Service of Northern Ireland investigated the preacher for allegations of hate crime. Northern Ireland’s Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness described the preacher’s comments as “hate mongering” and said the anti-Muslim statements “must be condemned in the strongest possible terms.” Click here to continue reading.
By Christian News Network
A group of 80 pastors is suggesting that the nation’s second-largest Protestant denomination is facing an imminent split over its inability to resolve long-standing theological disputes about sexuality and church doctrine.
But more than lamenting the current divisions, the pastors indicated there is little reason to think reconciliation — or even peaceful coexistence — could be found. Like a couple heading to divorce court, the pastors cited “irreconcilable differences” that can’t be mended.
“We can no longer talk about schism as something that might happen in the future. Schism has already taken place in our connection,” said the Maxie Dunnam, a retired president of evangelical Asbury Theological Seminary in Kentucky, who joined the statement.
It’s a marked shift in tone from 10 years ago, when conservatives rejected a proposal for an “amicable separation” as premature. “I don’t want us to talk about separation,” Dunnam said after the church’s 2004 assembly, before the same-sex marriage issue swept the nation. “That’s not a game where our energy needs to be focused.” Click here to continue reading.
From the Pew Forum on Religion
Massachusetts became the first state to legalize same-sex marriage following a ruling by the state’s highest court in 2003. To date, courts, legislatures and voters in 19 states – California, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington state – and the District of Columbia have legalized[homosexual] marriage. In addition, three states – Colorado, Nevada and Wisconsin – have civil unions or domestic-partnership provisions for same-sex couples. Meanwhile, 28 states have constitutional amendments banning gay marriage. To see an interactive map of the United States showing the changes in homosexual marriage state by state, click here.
By Heather Clark
Christian News Network
DETROIT, Mich. – A coalition of black pastors filed an amicus brief in court on Wednesday asking that it overturn a lower court’s decision that declared Michigan’s marriage amendment unconstitutional.
The Thomas More Law Center filed the brief on behalf of 110 African American pastors throughout Michigan and Ohio, who represent millions of Christians and other religious groups throughout the state.
As previously reported, U.S. District Judge Bernard Friedman, nominated to the bench by then-president Ronald Reagan, struck down Michigan’s same-sex ‘marriage’ ban this past March, declaring that the state’s constitutional amendment violates the federal constitution.
“Many Michigan residents have religious convictions whose principles govern the conduct of their daily lives and inform their own viewpoints about marriage,” he wrote. “Nonetheless, these views cannot strip other citizens of the guarantees of equal protection under the law.”
Voters in Michigan had passed a marriage amendment in 2004 that made it unlawful to conduct or recognize same-sex “marriages” in the state. It was passed with 59 percent of the vote, or nearly 2.7 million ballots cast in the favor of the measure. Click here to continue reading.
By Bill Randles
(Believers in Grace)
This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God;Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away. (2 Timothy 3:1-5)
There is a frightening phenomenon that I have observed lately. I have been seeing the unhappy spectacle of young people, between their teens and early thirties, reared in the evangelical subculture, yet denying Christ.
They don’t consciously do it; I have no doubt that they don’t realize they are denying the Savior, but indeed they are, and in many cases with a vehemence!
The watershed for these young people is the acceptance or rejection of homosexuality. Through a distorted concept of the civil rights movement of the 1960s, homosexuals are now considered to be the new victims of oppression; and those who would in any way judge it as evil are now the new bigots. They have erroneously likened themselves to blacks or Jews.
In fact, we have come to the point in our post-Christian, paganized culture, where it is not even enough to “tolerate” homosexuality; the pressure is on to become advocates of it, to champion it; and there is a new freedom for people to hate and demean anyone who would dare call it into question.
The age group I mentioned at the beginning of the article—teens through early thirties—are perhaps vulnerable for a number of reasons:
It is they who have been, for the most part, deliberately propagandized through our public schools to develop “sensitivity” to homosexual issues and to question even their own sexuality long before they have even entered puberty.
Anti-bullying campaigns and whole school days of self-imposed silence in solidarity with “gay” students have been invented by “gay activists” in order cast homosexuality into a kind of victim status, thus tapping into the natural sympathy and sense of fair play of the young.
Thus, to this generation, interaction with and acceptance of homosexuals is an easy bona fide, a way to assert that “I am compassionate, open minded, unprejudiced and much more loving than the traditional Christian church.”
This is how they deny Christ. In the name of “being loving” and “understanding,” they repudiate the revelation of God given to us through Jewish prophets and Christian apostles, without a second thought.
Our Christian sexual mores are not mere constructs of uptight pastors, priests, or rabbis; they are a revelation from God!
“For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother and shall cleave to his wife and they two shall be one flesh . . . and what God hath joined together, let no man put asunder.”
Man didn’t originate the above—that is God’s definition of marriage. Jesus cited it as being “from the beginning” the original intent for marriage.
That revelation from heaven caused a moral earthquake in the ancient world, transforming paganism’s exhausted, debauched, rotting societies, offering a wholesome life-affirming alternative. Here is how columnist Dennis Prager, who happens to be a practicing Jew, describes it:
When Judaism demanded that all sexual activity be channeled into marriage, it changed the world. The Torah’s prohibition of non-marital sex quite simply made the creation of Western civilization possible. Societies that did not place boundaries around sexuality were stymied in their development. The subsequent dominance of the Western world can largely be attributed to the sexual revolution initiated by Judaism and later carried forward by Christianity.
This revolution consisted of forcing the sexual genie into the marital bottle. It ensured that sex no longer dominated society, heightened male-female love and sexuality (and thereby almost alone created the possibility of love and eroticism within marriage), and began the arduous task of elevating the status of women.1
But this generation dismisses that for the most part. For the cheap “holier than thou” feeling of compassion, sophistication, and solidarity with an oppressed minority, “Christian” young people align themselves with the cause of homosexual marriage at the expense of those who seek to proclaim the Word of God to this generation.
This is how they deny Jesus and don’t even realize it: they repudiate His teaching on a very important subject, and they side with a world in rebellion against God’s moral order. Not only do they not realize it, in fact they actually believe they are being more merciful and Christlike than other Christians.
Sides are being taken in this culmination of the cosmic struggle between righteousness and unrighteousness, light and darkness, the truth and the Lie, and neutrality is impossible.
I think we need to reach our own young people because they don’t seem ready to stand for Jesus at the point where the world most resists Him.
They are confused about what love is but arrogantly believe they are more sophisticated and compassionate than the whole of the Christian church through the centuries.
1 Dennis Prager, “Judaism’s Sexual Revolution (http://www.orthodoxytoday.org/articles2/PragerHomosexuality.php).