On May 5, 2001, Pope Paul II begged God's forgiveness for sins committed by Roman Catholics against Jews, heretics and women. By doing so, he acknowledged that the "Church" has been wrong in the past.
This morning, your husband, James, and your guest, Joyce Meyer, acknowledged that within the different denominations, we all think we are right, but that we are going to be in for some surprises when we get to heaven. They both acknowledged that perhaps they could be wrong in some areas.
I contend that the church is wrong once more, and that Christian leaders have a responsibility to investigate another travesty perpetrated against its people.
I am writing to you instead of your husband, because I know that you were plagued with insecurities yourself, and I believe that you will relate to the people about whom I am writing. I think you have a compassionate heart to really listen to my message.
I have a website called ChristianGays.com. I was approached a couple of weeks ago by one of your "high profile" (his terminology) employees asking for advice. He works for you, but of necessity is an "in the closet" gay man.
So first, please be aware that there are gay people within your organization who are hurting desperately, just as there are gay people in every church who sit silently in their pews listening to messages of animosity against their very being.
Next, I would like you to consider that, although the Bible APPEARS to condemn homosexuals, if the church has made errors in the past, it is possible that they are making a gross error now regarding gay people.
Jesus' love was an inclusive love of ALL. Truly there are immoral homosexuals, just as there are immoral heterosexuals, but we are not immoral simply based on our orientation, which most of us believe to be God-given.
I believe, based on solid research into the original scriptures, that the translations have used incorrect words with regard to the issue of homosexuality. I believe that there are substantial explanations of how these errors have occurred, and what the correct interpretations should be, and they do NOT condemn homosexuals within a loving, sexual, monogamous relationship.
The correct interpretation does indeed speak out against immoral sexual acts perpetrated by people for whom homosexual sex was "unnatural", and there are many legitimate reasons for this, but these condemnations do not apply to homosexuals in general. The bible only refers to homosexual sex acts, not to sexual orientation, and there is a huge difference between the two.
I am a fundamentalist Christian, but my fundamentalism is based on the original scriptures, not subsequent translations when there is a discrepancy. I do not water-down the Word to suit my needs. Jesus Christ is my Saviour, but more importantly, He is the Lord of my everyday life, and I strive to live to please God as much as is humanly possible. I would not be true to my faith if I needed to distort scripture.
I believe that I have been given the ministry of reaching disenfranchised gay men and women who desperately want to be Christians, but they have been unwelcomed in their homes and places of worship, and have been made to feel that they are an abomination in God's sight, not for anything that they have done - simply for who they are. This is not right!
They can't NOT be gay. Many have tried therapy of all sorts, but this has done more harm than good, so they are left thinking that if they are gay, that they cannot be Christian, and for many, this is devastating. I have done very much reading on this subject, and now believe with all my heart that God loves gays, just as they are, without any need to be celibate, but to enjoy sex which is "natural" for them, within the confines of a loving, monogamous relationship.
I know that your ministry is reaching out in love to people in Africa. I too have had a foster child in Tanzania for many years, so I feel a great passion and gratitude for what you are doing over there, but there is a need for a new ministry in your own country as well as in every other country. We are your gay brothers, sisters, parents, friends, children, organists in your churches, etc. We are everywhere and we are hurting.
On that page, you will find articles, the first about why Gandhi did not become a Christian, and many others by straight pastors who have had to come to a change in their beliefs, and how that change took place. It also includes a link to a website where you can read specific explanations of each of the six "clobber verses" used against gays.
It is my prayer that you will take up this cause, first for your employee, who loves his work but is in turmoil as to whether or not he can continue with you while living a lie, and then for the world at large. When we are made to feel less than you, when we are unwelcome to be ourselves in your presence, then it is obvious to us that you are judging us whether you think you are or not.
You may feel that it is your obligation to "love the sinner but hate the sin", but I have never felt loved by anyone who said this to me, and if we have done the research ourselves, and believe that we are NOT sinners based on our orientation, but only sinners in the way that ALL have sinned, then you are judging, and there will be an eternal penalty to pay.
"Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you." Matt. 7:1,2
"How terrible it will be for you experts in religious law! For you hide the key to knowledge from the people. You don't enter the Kingdom yourselves, and you prevent others from entering." Luke 11:52
"O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones God's messengers. How often I have wanted to gather your children together as a hen protects her chicks beneath her wings, but you would not let me." Luke 13:34
We are God's children. Please, I encourage you to practice REAL love by doing some research into the issue of homosexuality and Scripture, but PLEASE, do the research from a NEW perspective based on the links from my website.
There is a lot of information used to back up your side of the issue. We have all been inundated with it from birth and know it all by heart, most of us using it to hate ourselves, and many to commit suicide.
REAL love will look at the other side with an open mind.
Thank you for your time.
Sadly, Betty did not respond to my letter. Instead, without even reading any of the new research into translations, her husband James responded as follows:
I am responding to your recent email - not in an attempt to change your mind, because I believe you are firm in your position - but just to let you know where I'm coming from.
I believe God says to all people: "I invite you to come to me just as you are, because I love you. But don't expect to stay as you are, for I want to transform you more and more to be like my Son Jesus."
As the Scriptures would never affirm a gay relationship as good and acceptable to God, neither can Betty and I, and that's not being judgmental. What if someone supported open marriage because they felt that having relationships with other women helped deepen their relationship with their wife? Would we encourage them to continue embracing open marriage? Of course not.
All of us have our issues. Nobody is perfect. We don't affirm homosexuality. But neither do we affirm adultery, gossip, lying, gluttony or a host of other sins. We're not in the business of condoning what God calls sin and enabling people to feel good about violating God's standards. But neither are we in the business of rejecting wounded people who sincerely want to find and walk with God. Our call is to declare the grace and forgiveness of Jesus Christ and the enablement He gives to grow and to change according to God's will. I hope you sense that this is our heartbeat. Real love compels us to speak what we're convinced is absolute truth with the genuine desire of making a difference.
(Via Carol Stertzer, Assistant to the President)
by Mary Pearson
Mar 7, 2005 - Kingston, ON, Canada