Thursday, August 16, 2012

Why I Support the GLBT Community

Why I Support the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgendered Community!

Frequently I am asked why, as a Christian pastor and person of faith why I can be so open and public in my support of so-called “gay rights.”

The simple answer is that it is the right thing to do!

I can argue scripture to fully support my beliefs and those who disagree with my opinion will use scripture as well.

I can appeal to church tradition and history to demonstrate the importance of affirming gender equality and justice and those who understand the tradition differently will counter with their own historical justifications.

I can argue from my personal experience of having worked in Christian ministry for and with many people directly impacted by gender issues. Yet, for those whose experience of Christianity and gender issues is fundamentally different from mine, there will be few grounds for common understanding.

Supporting gay rights, defending the right of same sex couples to be legally married, empowering and supporting those who have endured hatred and scorn because of their gender identity,  and acting to end discriminatory practices that inhibit full gender equality in society are ways that I faithfully live out my Christian faith.  It is simply the right thing to do.

Other churches will disagree with me. Other Christians will not understand my beliefs. Other pastors will preach and teach theologies that absolutely refute my beliefs. I recognize and respect that there is not universal agreement on this highly volatile topic. We may simply have to agree to disagree.

Yet one vital reality remains unstated that I believe we must say out loud. Biblical interpretations, church teachings, and legislative actions regarding gender issues are important, but they must never become the focus of idolatrous worship. God is bigger than any political, religious, or social agenda. Let us serve the One God even when we disagree over matters regarding sexuality and forget the sinful practice of letting beliefs about sexuality define our legitimacy as Christians. There is vital ministry to be done so let’s get back to work!