Skip to comments."Sexually Inclusive Christians" Celebrate Victories, Push for More
Posted on 08/30/2003 5:48:16 PM PDT by xzins
"Sexually Inclusive Christians" Celebrate Victories, Push for More
Mark Tooley August 22, 2003
When arguing for church acceptance of homosexuality, most advocates talk about monogamy. But others are bolder.
I am a strong ally of those in healthy, polyamorous relationships, declared Debra Kolodny. She argued that having multiple sexual partners can be holy. Kolodyn was leading a workshop at the WOW (Witness Our Welcome) 2003 convention, an ecumenical gathering for sexually and gender inclusive Christians.
Hundreds of homosexual, bisexual, and heterosexual people gathered under the queer banner in Philadelphia August 14-17 to urge religious acceptance of non-traditional sexual behaviors.
According to WOWs schedule brochure, it was sponsored by the homosexual caucus groups in most mainline Protestant denominations and Dignity USA (for Roman Catholics). Other supporting groups listed in the program included People for the American Way, the Human Rights Campaign, McCormick Theological Seminary (Presbyterian), Episcopal Divinity School, Chicago Theological Seminary (United Church of Christ), and Wesley Theological Seminary (United Methodist).
According to the president of Wesley seminary, Wesley paid a fee for a table with promotional material at WOW 2003. But Wesley did not endorse or give financial support to WOW beyond this fee.
Kolodny, an author and former national coordinator for The National Bisexual Network, was leading a workshop called Blessed Bi Spirit: Bisexual People of Faith. Although focusing mostly on bisexuality, Kolodny, who is Jewish, explained that she could not conclude the session without discussing polyamory.
There can be fidelity in threesomes, Kolodny said. It can be just as sanctified as anything else if all parties are agreed. But she was careful to stress that polyamory is unacceptable if there is deceit.
Kolodny said polyamory does not usually involve simultaneous group sex. But there are exceptions, she admitted, as she recalled a friend of hers who shares a bed with his wife and male partner. When asked by a workshop participant how polyamory was different from recreational sex, Kolodny responded that consensual recreational sex could be a part of polyamory. But polyamory usually involves some level of commitment and intimacy.
Noting she herself had never been polyamorous, Kolodny explained that as a busy attorney she simply did not have time to conduct the complicated negotiations necessary for holy polyamory. But she expressed admiration for persons with the time to organize.
Most of Kolodnys talk was about bisexuality, not polyamory. I disagree with the queer movement [when it claims] that sexual orientation is predetermined, Kolodny said, asserting that the existence of bisexuality challenges all that.
I know a lot of women who chose to become lesbian, Kolodny said. Love between two people is always beautiful, she added, and should be regarded as part of free choice.
Im not sure we can make the case for genetic predetermination, Kolodny stressed, saying sexual preference depends on opportunity, support, and spiritual experiences.
Kolodny lamented that the queer movement insists on the party line of genetic predetermination as part of a political strategy.
The queer movement relies on, We cant help it. Were born this way, Kolodny said. It feels so safe. If you dont say it youre thrown to the lions and youre evil.
She contrasted the insistence on genetic predetermination with the teachings of Judaism and Christianity, which say: God gives us choices.
Free will is essential to our humanity and essential to our being created in the image of God, Kolodny said. She charged that denying free choice in sex preference was perpetuating the hetero-patriarchy, helping the radical right, ignoring bisexuality, and making it easier for hate to continue.
Rather than creating absolute poles of sexual preference, Kolodny said the world includes a wide spectrum of choices. She recalled the hostility of her dyke friends when she abandoned her strict lesbianism for bisexuality. Many homosexuals suspect bisexuals of trying to gain the privileges of the hetero-patriarchy by seeking sexual partners of the opposite gender.
Another workshop leader who addressed a sexual minority sometimes forgotten by the queer movement was the Rev. Erin Swenson, formerly Eric. Swenson is a Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) minister and family counselor whose sex change operation made Swenson the first post-operative transsexual minister in a major denomination.
Swenson was married with children. But after suffering for years from a desire to be a woman, Swenson finally divorced and had the operation. I dont recommend that any one become transgender, Swenson said. Its a very painful process.
Some people accuse me of not being a woman, Swenson complained, citing ultra-feminists. Swenson prefers being called simply Erin and a child of God to any label. High heels are very uncomfortable, Swenson playfully admitted.
Transgender people wont come to your church unless they truly know they are safe there, Swenson warned. Even ostensibly gay friendly congregations are sometimes not prepared for transgender people. Get your church to be trans friendly, Swenson urged. One need is for bathrooms not marked male or female.
Swenson described the United Church of Christ as miles ahead of anybody in making itself open to transgender people. The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), in contrast, declined Swensons offer to volunteer in the creation of church resource materials for transgender church members.
Transgendered people threaten communities because they threaten our assumptions, Swenson concluded. It is threatening but also freeing.
Leading a workshop on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Questioning Issues in the Roman Catholic Church, Mary Louise Cervone complained that tolerance rather than justice is the norm in America today. A former president of Dignity USA, Cervone, with her same-sex partner at her side, wondered how many nameless men and women must die before this country moves beyond tolerance to freedom for all people.
Our best hope for change rests not with bishops and the pope but with Catholic people, Cervone insisted. Change wont come form the top down. The Catholic people must demand freedom.
Cervone affirmed her lesbianism as a gift of God. She confessed she has a hard time attending the Catholic Church, because the church is not where we find freedom. Its where we go to hide.
But you cant kick me out, Cervone declared defiantly. Where in religion did we get the idea that some people are more worthy than others? she wondered.
The Rev. Jorge Lockwood, who is Global Praise Coordinator for the United Methodist Churchs Board of Global Ministries, led a workshop called Redeeming Our Bodies, Congregational Song as a Path of Liberation.
As queer people, we have another way of looking at the body, Lockwood said. He complained that churches too often are uncomfortable with the human body and suffer from liturgical constipation. He observed that too often people think the desire of a 25 year old gay man for another 25 year old man is a beautiful thing, but the desire of a 65 year old for a 25 year is dirty.
We have all learned to challenge Romans, said the Rev. Mari Castellanos, referring to St. Pauls letter that, among other Scriptures, is critical of homosexual behavior. Castellanos leads the Justice and Witness Ministries of the United Church of Christ. We must do likewise with all texts that go against our brothers and sisters that are being claimed as the unerring Word of God.
But Castellanos also urged the WOW 2003 audience to embrace justice issues beyond their own. When we leave this earth, queer bishops wont matter as much as whether the hungry are fed, she insisted, to applause.
This president and this Congress have systematically torn down the social net that sustained all of us, Castellanos mourned. We must lobby our government on behalf of the poor of the world. Our experience of exile has taught us compassion.
Castellanos promised that we will take on scary proposals such as the Marriage Protection Act. We will turn the tide that threatens to obliterate the social contract. Echoing the name of a radical homosexual group, she insisted: We must continue to act-up!
Rev. Yvette Flunder, a United Church of Christ pastor from San Francisco, celebrated a string of political victories for pro-homosexuality advocates, including the election of an Episcopal Church homosexual bishop, the arrival of legalized same-sex unions in Canada, and the U.S. Supreme Courts ruling against anti-sodomy laws.
The Holy Ghost can break loose in an atmosphere of injustice and give us more justice in three weeks than many years! Flunder enthused. These wouldnt have been miracles under Bill Clinton! she exclaimed, citing the irony of pro-homosexuality strides under a conservative government.
The Rev. Troy Perry, founder of the predominantly homosexual Metropolitan Community Churches, asked all the heterosexuals at WOW 2003 to stand and receive applause. Thank you!!... I know what people do to you, he told them, saying they pay a price for solidarity with homosexuals.
Perry said he just got married to his male partner of 18 years, who has had AIDS for several years. He likened the plight of homosexuals who cannot legally marry to slaves who also had no legal right to marriage.
I will not give up until every one of us can marry, Perry insisted, comparing Heaven to attending the WOW 2003 conference.
A brief skit produced for the WOW 2003 audience showed three troubled disciples in a storm-tossed boat. One, a young woman, declares: I am bisexual and cant find acceptance in the gay community. A man says, I am a 19 year old gay. Or am I queer? And Im Presbyterian. But Im not sure what that means! A third person complains she is age 22 but cannot find a voice in the gay community.
Then a figure representing Jesus appears, played by a young woman wrapped in the rainbow flag, which is the emblem of the homosexual movement. Take heart, it is I, she says. Do not be afraid.
This is anything BUT common Grace..read it please...
1Cr 1:18 For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.
This clearly says that all men do not have the grace necessary to understand the Gospel
Jhn 6:44 No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.
Another fine Calvinist proof text. This clearly says that all men do not have the grace to come , only those that the Father gives it to.
2Cr 4:3 But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost:
2Cr 4:4 In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.
One more that proves that there is no common grace that allows dead-men to save themselves
Consider the words. The gospel is hid from some men , all men can not see it because their minds are blinded. Common grace will not allow this blind man to see.
Calvinists also love romans
Rom 8:7 Because the carnal mind [is] enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be.
Read this..again it clearly indicates that common grace does not bring the dead to life .
Rom 8:9 But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his
Note that common grace does not benefit all men , for some remain in the flesh . The Spirit does not indwell until after the man is saved.
"God, for reasons known only to himself, (cf. Matt. 11:2526) gives an inward, effectual call, in addition to the outward invitation, to the elect in Christ. This inward call is accompanied with the very power of God (cf. Eph. 1:1920), and with it comes a new birth, life, willingness (cf. Psalms 110:3) to look unto Christ, and a desire to love and obey him. This results in a new nature, one that is now in willing subservience to Christ, a nature that is no longer in bondage to the prince of this world. With the new nature comes the ability to receive the truth of the gospel. Thus the "born of the Spirit" (cf. John 3:78) sinner freely and willingly turns to Christ as Lord and Savior. The Spirit of God gives faith and repentance to this child of God"
I'm more inclined to say that it was predestined that I should eventually grow weary of that particular debate. :P
I find this to be some fairly good notetaking on the doctrine of the Blood of Christ.
a. Blood was recognized in and outside the Bible as the seat of physical life, hence the axiomatic statement "For the life of the flesh is in the blood" (Lev.17:11; cp. Gen.9:4).
b. Consequently, the shedding of blood and blood itself (when outside the body) are used figuratively to represent death, whether via capital punishment (Gen.9:5,6), war (1Kgs.2:5; 1Chr.28:3), murder (Gen.9:6; 37:22; 42:22; Num.19:10; 35:19,27,33), or sacrifice (Ex.12:7,13,22,23; Lev.17:11).
c. The term is also used figuratively to represent physical humanity (Mt.16:17; Jn.1:13; Gal.1:16), and guilt for a capital offense (Num.20:9,16,27; Josh.2:19; Mt.27:25).
2. Animal blood was used under the Old Testament shadow soteriology to portray Christ's spiritual death for sins (Lev.17; cp. Jn.1:29; Heb.9:7,12-14,18-21,25; 10:4,19,29; 12:24; 1Pet.1:18,20).
a. Christ's spiritual death was invisible to man.
b. Animals do not have souls or spirits, as people do. c. The blood of sacrificial animals (which represented their death) could not save (Heb.10:4), but was used as a visible representation of the spiritual death of Christ for sins, which the Levitical sacrifices foreshadowed.
i)The death of the victim is the key part of the sacrifice, not its blood (Lev.17:11 "for it is the blood by reason of the life that makes atonement").
ii) The blood of the sacrificial animals must be recognized as constituting a representative analogy to the spiritual death of Christ, the lesser representing the greater, the visible representing the invisible.
3. Various ritualistic uses of blood under "Codex 3" speak of doctrines related to Christ's work (Lev.17).
a. Blood applied to the horns (speaks of power) of the Altar teaches that the gospel is the power of God unto salvation.
b. Sprinkling blood on the Altar speaks of Christ propitiating the Godhead on the Cross.
c. Pouring the blood out at the base of the Altar portrays unlimited atonement.
d. Blood sprinkled on the Mercy Seat speaks of the impact of propitiation toward God (in the third heaven).
e. Blood on the right ear lobe, right thumb, and right toe speaks of the work of Christ as the basis for the grace apparatus for perception (GAP) and divine good production.
f. Blood on the horns of the Altar of Incense speaks of Christ's work as the authority behind prayer.
g. Sprinkling seven times (speaks of perfection) represents the perfect work of propitiation, which cannot be added to.
4. Christ actually died twice while on the Cross (Isa.53:9, "deaths").
a. Adam died twice: spiritually at the moment of his sin (Gen.3) and physically 960 years later (Gen.5).
b. Christ's spiritual death is designed to undo what Adam's negative volition got us into (Rom.5:19 "For as through the one man's disobedience the many were made sinners, even so through the obedience of the One the many will be made righteous"; also, cp. vv.13-21).
c. In time, Christ made a volitional decision to die spiritually (Lk.22:42, "Father...").
d. Christ's spiritual death took exactly three hours (Mk.14:33,34; Mt.27:45,46; Lk.23:44,45; Jn.19:28-30).
e. During those three hours He was judged for all sins, including the sins of unbelievers (2Cor.5:21; 1Jn.2:2).
f. His rhetorical question draws attention to the three hours (Mt.27:46 "MY GOD, MY GOD, WHY HAVE YOU FORSAKEN ME?").
g. Afterward, He said "It is finished", the perfect passive indicative of tele,w, teleo, referring to bearing our sins.
h. Finally, Christ died physically by His own volition (Lk.23:46 "Father, INTO YOUR HANDS I COMMIT MY SPIRIT").
5. Christ did not bleed to death on the Cross, nor does His physical bleeding save.
a. The witness of John (eyewitness; Jn.19:30-35).
b. Christ did bleed both before and after His deaths on the Cross (Gethsemane, Pilate's court, crucifixion, blood and serum).
c. Christ's sufferings fall into two categories: those inflicted by the cosmos, and those inflicted by God.
d. Only the latter was efficacious, and it did not include bleeding.
6. Synonyms for the blood of Christ.
a. Christ died for our sins (1Cor.15:3).
b. Christ bore our sins (1Pet.2:24).
c. Christ was made sin (2Cor.5:21).
7. "Eating" Christ's flesh and "drinking" His blood is analogous to the appropriation of salvation (Jn.6:53-56; some peeled off; they could not handle this analogy).
8. The blood of Christ portrays:
a. Propitiation (Rom.3:25; Heb.9:5).
b. Redemption (Eph.1:17; Col.1:14; 1Pet.1:18,19; Rev.1:5; lu,w, luo: release, cp. lou,w, louo: wash).
c. Reconciliation (Eph.2:13-17).
d. Sanctification (Heb.13:10-12).
e. Justification (Rom.5:9).
9. The blood of Christ is the basis for the Rebound technique (Lev.4,5; cp. 1Jn.1:7,9).
a. Believers continue to possess the sinful trend of Adam, and sin after salvation (1Jn.1:8,10 "If we say that we have no sin [nature], we are deceiving ourselves, and the truth [doctrine] is not in us"; "If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us").
b. The blood of Christ is the reason a believer can Rebound and receive instant forgiveness (1Jn.1:7,9 "the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin"; "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins...").
c. If the believer does not believe this principle, he will lack the confidence to Rebound effectively.
New Bible Class Schedule:
10:30 AM Service - Taught by R. B. Thieme III
8:00 PM Bible class (beginning 9 September 2003)-
Video recording from the R. B. Thieme, Jr., video library
7:30 PM Prayer Meeting
8:00 PM Bible class -
Video recording from the R. B. Thieme, Jr., video library
Prep School and the Nursery will be available during all scheduled sessions.
The purpose of R. B. Thieme, Jr., Bible Ministries is to distribute the recorded and written material of R. B. Thieme, Jr. only. Therefore, recorded messages of R. B. Thieme III or subsequent speakers at Berachah Church will not be available.
******* Update to the Congregation from the Board of Deacons: At the August Board of Deacons Meeting, Pastor Robert B. Thieme III accepted an invitation to continue teaching Sunday morning classes for the month of September. In response to congregational interest, the Board of Deacons voted to add a Tuesday evening Bible class from the R. B. Thieme, Jr., video library. The first of these classes will be held on Tuesday, September 9th. Prep School will also resume on September 9th. The board is in the process of resolving various administrative and financial issues concerning our pastor. When these issues are finalized, the pulpit vacancy procedures will be implemented. We will continue to keep you updated on these matters.
Update to the Congregation from the Board of Deacons:
At the August Board of Deacons Meeting, Pastor Robert B. Thieme III accepted an invitation to continue teaching Sunday morning classes for the month of September.
In response to congregational interest, the Board of Deacons voted to add a Tuesday evening Bible class from the R. B. Thieme, Jr., video library. The first of these classes will be held on Tuesday, September 9th. Prep School will also resume on September 9th.
The board is in the process of resolving various administrative and financial issues concerning our pastor. When these issues are finalized, the pulpit vacancy procedures will be implemented.
We will continue to keep you updated on these matters.
This 'notetaking' can be found at the Maranatha Church Website.
I asked you a simple "yes or no" question, and you give us a data dump, cut and pasted from a website you didn't even have the honesty to give credit to. Did you think we would assume that you wrote this? Do you think we're all that dumb?
There is much in these so-called "notes" that is unscriptural, and I see a couple places where the author added (in brackets) words that alter the clear meaning of the verse to try to make it say what he wanted it to say. Downright dishonest if you ask me. I will deal with every one of these items when I have the time, because this subject is of vital importance to the Believer. Do not take the delay for lack of knowledge.
Now then, there is some unfinished business between us. In order for any doctrinal discussion to progress between us, it must be dealt with. There are many people watching to see what you will do, who wonder if you are all wind and no substance, who wonder if you possess the "spirituality" that you profess. The time is now, the place is here, and the person who is on the spot is you. No evasion, no prevarication, just plain, simple one and two-syllable words are all that are necessary, with no justification of yourself, no attempts to deflect or to avoid. Ignoring it or not answering will be seen as an admission that you can't bring yourself to correct yourself where you have erred, and cannot admit fault, and that you wrongfully accused me and impuned my salvation and my standing before God. You know what the right thing to do is. Will you do it?
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.