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Ray Boltz: “I don’t believe God hates me anymore”

Remember Ray Boltz? It’s been nearly seven years since Ray ‘came out of the closet’ and took a hiatus from Christian Music…

But now Boltz is back with a new album, and a new belief.  And a call for Christians to not discriminate against homosexuals.

Here is one of the lyrics to a song called “Who Would Jesus Love?”

Would He only love the ones
Who looked the same as me
Would He only offer hope
When He saw similarity
Would He leave the others waiting
Like a stranger at the gate
Would He discriminate.

Or, part of the lyrics of his song “Don’t Tell Me Who To Love

Don’t tell me who to love,
Don’t tell me who to kiss,
Don’t tell me that there’s something wrong,
Because I feel like this.

Maybe you’re in love today and you’ve been making wedding plans
But there is someone in your way shouting things cause they don’t understand
The judge says that’s not legal, the preacher calls it a sin
Oh you just remember they were wrong before and they’re wrong again

On his transformation, Boltz says:  “I don’t believe God hates me anymore…I always thought if people knew the true me, they’d be disgusted, and that included God. But for all the doubts, there’s this new belief that God accepts me and created me, and there’s peace.”

Make no doubt about it… how the church responds to the issue of homosexuality will be one of the major issues in the church over the next decade.

What do you think?  You can read more on Boltz in a New York Times article written recently here

Todd

(PS — I was never a big Ray Boltz fan.  Ever.  But take a short listen to the song linked above.  Let’s just say, the music itself would not make me a fan, ever.  Not one of Boltz’s best songs, gay or not gay.)



92 Responses to “ “Ray Boltz: “I don’t believe God hates me anymore””

  1. I think he’s right. God doesn’t hate him. Not even a little bit. Like Todd, I’ve NEVER been a fan of his music. But I’m thrilled he’s decided to get back into his passion and that he’s been delivered from the bondage of sin.

  2. Daniel Davis says:

    Truth is truth, sin is sin and we can never compromise – no matter who likes us or not. We are not called to be popular, well liked or respected. We are called to proclaim the truth. However, we must always do so in humility and love. God is not OK with sin, no matter how we try to spin it, or convince ourselves otherwise.

  3. Brandon says:

    What sin are you talking about? Ray’s music? I mean, I don’t prefer is, but I wouldn’t go so far as to call it sin.

  4. rick says:

    God doesn’t hate Him is the sense he once thought. At the same time Boltz exemplifies the irrationality and disregard for Truth found in a mind given over to sin.

    Rather than Christians cheering his (and others) coming out, we should pray we will one day rejoice in his repentance.

  5. Todd Rhoades says:

    Is it just me, or could Ray Boltz win a Howie Mandell look alike contest?

    Todd

  6. Craig says:

    In his lyrics, Ray makes his case stand or fall on the idea that “if I feel this way, it must be OK.” It’s a variation on the “if this is how I have always felt, it must be normal for me” view. If we believe that this world was corrupted by sin, and that sin has corrupted every part of us in some way, then it only makes sense that some of the things people “feel” or “desire” all of their lives may still be wrong, sinful, deadly, or all of these. I am not called to do what comes “naturally” to me, but rather to put on the new self, created in me by God and resembling the righteousness of Christ. It may mean giving up a “natural” desire or longing–it probably will mean that for everyone in some sense. But this is what God offers–not a blessing of our natural, sinful state, but redemption into the image of Chirst.

  7. Brandon says:

    @Todd: OMG! Todd! I didn’t even see that! Great eye!

    @rick: I think we are missing something here. Ray has repented of his former ways. He is now living in the truth of who God created him, which is a beautiful thing. I’m not sure any heterosexuals can really grasp the hell of living a life that is a lie, in this manner, as our brother Ray has for most of his. He has quit living the lie of the devil and has fully embraced his created nature. That is ALWAYS to be celebrated.

  8. Rick Garner says:

    This is very telling to the distortion of Ray’s worldview. God cannot hate a person. He hates sin. A person’s sins do not create an entire person and this continually seems to be the stumbling block with the sexuality issue. God hates sin…homosexuality is a sin…so God hates gays and lesbians. If that were true, then God would hate every murderer, thief, adulterer, and divorced person. Those are all sins but God hates the sin…not the sinner. But we all have to reach a maturity to understand that concept.

  9. rick says:

    Brandon – you repeat the deception. All of us know the bondage of sin and some of us know the freedom that comes through Christ. That’s independent of whether the former nature was given to homosexuality, some other sexual sin, or thievery, or mocking, or whatever … Boltz is only rejoicing in his sinful nature and others are applauding him. As one smart guy recently wrote regarding Jennifer Knapp, “The problem is not that Jennifer Knapp struggles with a sin most of do not struggle with. The problem is that she stopped struggling with it and started defending it.” Boltz is doing the same. Nothing to celebrate there.

  10. Brandon says:

    I understand what you’re saying, Rick. I just disagree that homosexuality is a sin. I used to be a staunch defender of this, IMHO, misinterpretation.

    Paul talks about the sin of men and women going against what is natural, for them. It would seem to me that Paul is saying it’s a sin to not be who they are. Why would God create someone, in innocence, to be something he despises?

  11. rick says:

    Ok … so it’s simply that we understand Scripture regarding homosexuality different and that’s not going to get fixed in this space. But with that as it is, from the perspective of one seeing this as sin, those encouraging Boltz are in a scary place.

  12. bishopdave says:

    God created me as an angry person. My anger is how God made me, no matter what sin it leads me into, anger is a part of me. Anger is my life style. Will you accept my anger as part of me, and excuse the sins of abuse and violence it drags me into? Anger is my lifestyle, accept me as being made this way.

  13. Brandon says:

    Exactly. :-) I do respect your position, as someone who was there for quite a long time. And I agree, for the person holding the position that homosexuality as sin, those encouraging Boltz are in a scary place.

  14. Brandon says:

    @Bishopdave: I do accept you as you are, with no expectation. And if God, in his sovreignity, sees fit to allow you to continue in that, who am I to challenge God?

  15. Rick Garner says:

    Brandon, a great question indeed: “Why would God create someone, in innocence, to be something he despises?”

    Does innocence even exist? No one is innocent in the sense f being sinless. According to the Bible, “the heart is wicked and deceitful above all things” (Jeremiah 17:9), and “all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). For more check out: http://www.gotquestions.org/innocent-suffer.html

    Ultimately, and we may also disagree on this, homosexuality is a choice. I don’t buy into the concept that a person is “born gay.” Just like I don’t support the concept of “it happens in nature.” Indeed, animals do lots of things…but we’re not animals. God placed us above animals and desires. One’s environment (home, public, work) will impact their views and choices but ultimately one makes a choice.

    But this is where we spent a great deal of time…wrestling with interoperation and semantics when ultimately it boils down to this: I disagree with the homosexual lifestyle…but I can still love and be friends with that person. That’s where we stumble…we don’t know how to express that love…or withhold it all together. This is the one area we as Christians need to improve.

  16. fishon says:

    When are real Christ Followers going to start obeying the Scriptures?

    Jude 3,4——-4For certain men whose condemnation was written about[b] long ago have secretly slipped in among you. They are godless men, who change the grace of our God into a license for immorality and deny Jesus Christ our only Sovereign and Lord. ”

    2 Tim. 3:1-5——1But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. 2People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, 3without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, 4treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— 5having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with them.
    ———Check out the last sentence—–

    1 Tim. 1:18,19——18Timothy, my son, I give you this instruction in keeping with the prophecies once made about you, so that by following them you may fight the good fight, 19holding on to faith and a good conscience. Some have rejected these and so have shipwrecked their faith.

    ———-Scripture is true. Ray’s feeling are not the truth.

  17. CS says:

    Rick Garner:

    “God cannot hate a person. He hates sin.”

    How does Romans 9 fit into this, especially when it talks about Esau?

    Brandon:

    “Paul talks about the sin of men and women going against what is natural, for them.”

    You added two words that the Bible does not include in Romans 1–”for them.”


    CS

  18. Rick Garner says:

    CS,

    It’s all about context here. Taken out of context it certainly sounds like God’s emotions are being applied but in context its clear this “hate” is about choosing and rejecting.

    Many verses stand on their own very well. Others need to have their context considered. This is a challenge for me as well…while it may be easy to quote Scripture for certain situations or scenerios…is it truly in context or am I using Scripture to support my own opinion?

    Check this for study: http://www.gotquestions.org/jacob-esau-love-hate.html

  19. Brandon says:

    @fishon: I’m having a difficult time trying to find where your comment fits in here. Care to expound?

  20. Brandon says:

    @CS:

    “You added two words that the Bible does not include in Romans 1—“for them.”

    I did. For clarification. One of the meanings of the word ‘natural’ or ‘physis’ is:

    a mode of feeling and acting which by long habit has become nature.

    that is different for each person.

  21. Peter Hamm says:

    Brandon writes [Paul talks about the sin of men and women going against what is natural, for them.] Sorry, but as CS points out, that is CLASSIC eisogesis.

    What if I feel very strongly that God made me a pederast? Then where would I be?

  22. Brandon says:

    @Peter Hamm. If God created you a pederast, you are loved exactly as you are created; a child of God.

    As you progress on your journey, the Spirit will lead oyu. That’s not for me to determine for you.

  23. Larry C says:

    One cannot be free from bondage of sin when one continues to live in that same sin. One can live in that same sin until their conscience becomes seared and it becomes living in a state of the worst kind of deception.
    Whether or not his sexuality is from birth or from choice ….. we all have sinned and come short of the glory of God. And we all have the choice to repent (which means turn away) of that sin. And, the Word promises victory over that sin. Would Jesus say to “Go and Sin No More” if He intended us to merely change the definition of an action from sin to non-sin? Greater is He that is in you than is in the world.

  24. Brian L. says:

    Peter, I was about to ask the same question in terms of child molestation (did God create me to do that or to have that desire?), murder, adultery, theft, etc. All of which, like homosexual activity, Scripture clearly defines as sin.

    Brandon, I understand how you feel about the “natural, for them,” thing. However, the context of that passage is clearly homosexual activity, not “natural” feelings for the same sex.

    Let me also say that you are one of most civil people I’ve ever met who disagrees with the majority here. That goes a long way. I’ve found that “tolerance” is a one-way street with the vast majority of those who think homosexual behavior is not sin. Those of us who disagree are expected to accept and even celebrate homosexuality, but ask them to give us the courtesy of wanting to hold on to our own beliefs, and we get ridiculed and called homophobic.

    We may never agree on this issue – but I appreciate your tone.

  25. fishon says:

    Brandon,
    It is simple.
    There are godless men who change the grace of our God into a license for immorality. Ray Boltz is one of them. And so too are those who would declare homosexuality NOT sin. Boltz’s can declare his own ‘lego’ made biblical belief, but doesn’t make it the real deal.

    5having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with them.
    ——–There comes a time when true believers need to STOP this debate with those who will not listen and continue to spread the lies of Satan. How many of you guys who believe that pedophilia is a sin would go on and on in a debate, with a pdeophile, who continued to purposefully turn scripture upside down to try and prove their position ? To strong, just insert drunk–rapist–drug addict. It is time to do as the Bible says with those who use the Bible, continually, to TEACH sin is not sin. ‘HAVE NOTHING TO DO WITH THEM.’

    “Some have rejected these and so have shipwrecked their faith.”
    ———–I would think I need not expound on.

  26. Rick Frueh says:

    Of course same succombing to same sex attractions are wrong. The Scriptures are clear, the physiology is geometric, and the reproduction is telling. But when someone can no longer stand the tension, and instead of going from one tension to another (denying Christ), he creates a personal safety zone which gives him a sense of peace but is fraught with deception.

    But when Jesus says “lay not treasures upon earth for yourselves”, and heterosexual believers who desire to sanctify their savings and retirement accounts, as well as their stock portfolios, they relieve their tension by ignoring scores of New Testament Scriptures and incorporate their disobedience into a “God approved” theology.

    My point is that many heterosexual stone throwers are manifesting the same “God’s blessing” deception about their sin as do men like Boltz. But since most of us have never struggled with same sex attractions, our self righteous vantage point makes gay believers an easy target. Let’s meet at the Outback for a steak and assure each other of our heterosexual orthodoxy and go home that night content with view of the moral law that must be adhered to before “grace” can be fully effective.

    If no one can be saved if they are deceived about a sin they commit even while suggesting that sin is God’s blessing then no one is saved. Placing your hand over your heart and pledging allegiance that should be exclusively to Christ to an earthly nation is every bit a serious sin as gay sex. And many claim God blesses that idolatry. Put down the stones and retreat to the humble prayer closet that both inteceeds for Boltz and reveals the horror of our own sin.

  27. fishon says:

    Rick Frueh said::My point is that many heterosexual stone throwers are manifesting the same “God’s blessing” deception about their sin as do men like Boltz.
    ——–Rick, what constitutes a “stone thrower,” in your opinion? ———Could it be something like: The acts of the sinful nature are obvious…I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this WILL NOT [caps mine] inherit the kingdom of God.”

  28. Jim B. says:

    To start, the belief that God creates homosexuality is a false premise. God did not create one to be homosexual. Granted, there are alot of psychological dynamics that go into the homosexual desires, but God isn’t the originator of them. Besides, if we start with God created me this way, then we have to change nothing about our behavior. God created me with a sin nature; therefore, I don’t have to stop lying, cheating, stealing, or commiting adultry; I was born that way. God loves me just as I am, so I am free to accept myself with my sin nature acting sinfully.

    The second false premise is that homosexuals can’t change. This is also false; there has been alot written in the past decade regarding those who struggle with homosexuality being able to change that orientation, and this is coming from the field of psychology and not just pastors. I’ve personally worked with several men through the years that have found both spiritual and personal healing from their homosexual desires. So, to state that this is who I am and I can’t change is completely inaccurate.

    In case anyone wants to debate my stated work with homosexuals, I hold a doctoral level degree in “Marriage and Family Therapy”, as well as a Master’s of Divinity in “Pastoral Psychology and Counseling.” I am also in a full-time private practice, so I’ve seen the transformations that have happen.

    Besides, has anyone talked to Ray’s wife and kids? I’m sure they’re not so accepting of his new-found freedoms.

  29. Peter Hamm says:

    Brandon writes [If God created you a pederast, you are loved exactly as you are created; a child of God.

    As you progress on your journey, the Spirit will lead oyu. That’s not for me to determine for you.]

    Please think through the implications of that. You basically are saying that there isn’t a right-and-wrong that can be arrived at by scripture and plain reason. You may not mean this, but it is the obvious outcome of your argument.

    Based on Scripture and plain reason, I have to utterly reject the notion that we can decide such things.

    The arguments that the Bible doesn’t actually condemn homosexual behavior are based on revisionist thinking, mis-interpretation, ignoring key scriptures in favor of others, or simple rejection of the Bible as inspired at all. I, personally, can’t accept any of these things. He has, indeed, spoken through the prophets.

  30. Geo. Brown says:

    I understand fishon.

    Everyone, why did God flood the earth? How many were saved? Why did God destroy Sodom and Gamorrah? How many were saved. What was the deal with the wife!? If the end times are going to be as the days of Noah (and MAN!… those days must have been REALLY bad) according to the wide and narrow gate and the many and few, just how many truly will be saved? The key element missing in many churches is OBEDIENCE. Obedience to WHAT? As fishon points out. The TRUTH. Sadly, many people want to disect it and reject it even though it is NON-NEGOTIABLE.

    The apostle Paul said it best: “Wretched man that I am! Who will set me free from the body of this death?

    Short answer- JESUS. The Way, the Truth and the LIFE! Amen.

  31. Rick Frueh says:

    For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ.

    12Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble;

    13Every man’s work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man’s work of what sort it is.

    14If any man’s work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward.

    15If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire.

    * So it is possible that a man can be saved and yet not have Godly works. Of course it is possible a man is not saved and yet have works that seem Godly. Only God will know, however, no one gets eternal life through obedience. It is all of grace through faith.

  32. fishon says:

    Rick Frueh on Tue, May 25, 2010

    * So it is possible that a man can be saved and yet not have Godly works.
    ———–So do think it possible for a man to be saved but continually be a drunk? I am serious. Are you telling me I can go back and be a drunk as I was in the past?

    Or maybe I will get the old, “You probably weren’t saved in the first place,” thing. Well, that can’t be because of you saying: * So it is possible that a man can be saved and yet not have Godly works.

  33. Rick Frueh says:

    Does your son have to remain sober to continue being your son? You are teaching a works salvation which makes the grace of God an earned reward.

  34. Peter Hamm says:

    Rick,

    Can someone have a living saving faith without works? Hint: Read the book of James first.

    This is off-topic though.

  35. I clicked on the link and thought I got RickRolled…

    Debate on homosexuality aside, i think we can all agree that this is musically awful. It’s like a sober David Hasselhoff meets Rick Astley… seriously, this is really horrible.

  36. Brandon says:

    @Brian L.

    Thank you for your kind words. I believe that we can agree to disagree on scripture. That concept is lost in western culture, but fully embraced, even today, in eastern culture.

    I would challenge your point on what ‘scripture clearly defines as sin’.

    To me, it’s not as clear as we would like it to be. People do not like freedom. The Israelites didn’t like it in the wilderness. They wanted to go back to their system of do’s and don’ts because that clearly defines boundaries. But like Paul said, everything is permissible, meaning we can do all things, but it’s not all profitable.

    I wrestle with this issue of freedom because I want to know what I can and can’t do. And if I’m honest with myself, it’s usually because at that point, I have a measure by which to compare myself to others.

    That’s not freedom, though. It’s bondage.

  37. fishon says:

    Rick Frueh on Wed, May 26, 2010
    Does your son have to remain sober to continue being your son? You are teaching a works salvation which makes the grace of God an earned reward.
    ——–First of all, Rick, you did NOT answer my questions.
    I will assume as your answer as a question suggests that you would are saying, “Yes, a man can remain a drunk and still be saved.” Because if it depends on him stopping from being a drunk to receive Jesus as Lord and Savior it is works salvation. You intimate that he does NOT have to overcome his drunkedness to become a follower of Christ. Ok, let’s go with that.

    So sin being sin, drunk or liar, etc, I expect you to be consistent in your thinking.

    So, Rick, do think it possible for a man to be saved but continually being a rapist? I am serious.——–I await your answer.

    Well, maybe I have it just by changing a couple words in your answer about another sin, drunkedness.

    YOU Said: Does your son have to remain sober {not a rapper} to continue being your son?
    You are teaching a works salvation which makes the grace of God an earned reward.
    ——-So by what you wrote in reply to me, I am left with the only answer I hear from you——–a rapper can remain a rapper and still be saved.————-that is, if you are consistent with what you told me.

  38. Q. says:

    I too appreciate your candor and value talking peaceably (which again, is not too common). Thank you for your willingness to share from your perspective.

  39. Rick Frueh says:

    Yes, a man can commit any sin and still be saved (except the unpardonable sin). And a man can do works of righteousness and still be lost. Grace is grace and is untethered by acts of sin or acts of righteousness.

  40. Rick Frueh says:

    It is right toconfront Boltz’s contention that living a gay lifestyle is approved by God. It is right to identify homosexual behavior as sin. But it is wrong to say unequivicably that he or anyone esle cannot be saved while committing sin since that would include all of us.

    Grace does not activate when sin is forsaken, and in fact no one forsakes all of his sin. Grace is activated by faith alone which only God knows. So how much sin can still be committed and still be saved? A believer should strive for personal sanctification, however many believers backslide and get caught up in the culture.

    Nationalism, hedonism, divorce, lust, greed, debt, and a long line of sins are conspicuous within the western culture which the church by and large commits and sometimes embraces.

  41. fishon says:

    Rick Frueh on Wed, May 26, 2010
    Yes, a man can commit any sin and still be saved (except the unpardonable sin). And a man can do works of righteousness and still be lost. Grace is grace and is untethered by acts of sin or acts of righteousness.
    ———-Well, Rick, if I understand you right, man can become saved but continue to be a murderer——–must be if he can continue to rape and be a drunk.

    All I can say is———You have changed the grace of our God into a license for immorality [Jude 4].

  42. Brandon says:

    @fishon

    stone-throwers, in the John story, were the religious folk who favored law over grace.

    To be fair to scripture, that story wasn’t included in the original. It was added later. Not sure that takes away from the essence of the story, but there ya go.

  43. Brandon says:

    @Jim B.

    I don’t think it’s a false premise to believe God created homosexuals in this manner.

    If someone is inherently nurturing, why do we attribute that to God? If someone inherently loves, why is that attributed to God? And then if someone is something that we don’t agree with, well, God didn’t create them that way. It’s perverted, fallen humanity. They can change. The logic doesn’t quite flow.

    God does love us just as we are. And it’s HE that works in us to change us as he sees fit. Not according to some kind of law, but according to his will.

    Your second ‘false premise’ is problematic. If homosexuals are encouraged to change, then we should equally encourage heterosexuals to change. After all, how we are born, in total depravity to sin, is bad.

    This argument doesn’t add up to me. Not in the least.

    Because your experience has been that people can change who they are, doesn’t mean that’s empirical certainty. It means, that’s been your experience and in no way is compelling evidence to the contrary.

    I am friends with many, many queers and they’ve gone through, probably, similar ‘healings’ of their ‘desires, as you put it. Not one of them lasted.

    But when they embraced you they are, both spiritual and personal healing came.

    While I appreciate your pedigree, it doesn’t effect my experience and how I’ve seen God move and work in my friends lives.

    As to Ray’s family: It’s tragic, I’m absolutely sure. Having not experienced this exact situation in my life and marriage, I can’t imagine what they’ve all been through. But him maintaining this lie would have been much more damning to both he and his family had he not acknowledged this truth. The family has choices on how they handle this confession.

    I suppose it’s much easier to speak about the ideas of grace, mercy, compassion, forgiveness and reconciliation. Employing those qualities is something entirely different.

    I reverently maintain my position.

  44. fishon says:

    Brandon on Wed, May 26, 2010
    @fishon

    stone-throwers, in the John story, were the religious folk who favored law over grace.

    To be fair to scripture, that story wasn’t included in the original. It was added later. Not sure that takes away from the essence of the story, but there ya go.
    ——–I do NOT know what you are talking about. I did NOT reference the story you are talking about

  45. Brandon says:

    @Geo. Brown

    I don’t think the issue is obedience to truth. Rather, to which interpretation of truth we’re obedient. And maybe even more, if we truly believe the spirit is active in the leading of God’s people, how can we judge that the Spirit isn’t leading a person into truth.

    Personally, I don’t need your revelation of truth to be my revelation of truth. Granted, there may be many points that are similar, but I’m quite confident the spirit leads me. Acknowledging that I make mistakes, I still firmly believe the spirit leads me.

  46. Brandon says:

    Fishon said:

    I do NOT know what you are talking about. I did NOT reference the story you are talking about

    Response:

    Sure you did.

    “fishon on Tue, May 25, 2010

    ————Rick, what constitutes a “stone thrower,” in your opinion?————-Could it be something like: The acts of the sinful nature are obvious…I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this WILL NOT [caps mine] inherit the kingdom of God.”
    /end quote

  47. Brandon says:

    @fishon

    you said:
    —————Well, Rick, if I understand you right, man can become saved but continue to be a murderer————must be if he can continue to rape and be a drunk.
    All I can say is————-You have changed the grace of our God into a license for immorality [Jude 4].
    /end quote

    Rick hasn’t change grace in any manner, fishon. Grace is something that’s provisioned for without exception to every person, everywhere. We didn’t earn it. We can’t lose it.

    In the same manner, salvation isn’t something earned or lost. It simply is.

    Jesus said it’s finished. Not “it’s finished, except for these couple last things you need to do, personally.”

    Now, if you want to live by the letters of the law, that’s fair and fine for you. But please don’t put constraints on the depth of the love, the grace, and the mercy of God.

    And as we read in the story, Jesus didn’t condemn the woman in adultery. He forgave her without her asking, in the midst of what she was doing. That’s where transformation happens. When you can extend that kind love, without judgment and condemnation, or rules and regulations, things begin changing in people.

    What do you believe grace to be, fishon?

  48. Kevin says:

    Well, people… I, too, am pleased to read through a long a respectful discussion. It looks like a safe and anonymous forum to share my “experience”. Five years ago, at 23 years of age, my son told us of his attempts to commit suicide over despair at reconciling his orientation for men with his strongly held beliefs. We were devastated over our ignorance that he was struggling and in pain – and we were unaware.

    There has been a mutual determination to remain close as family – and I think we have been successful. HOURS into DAYS of discussion, prayer, counsel and some great conferences like “Love Won Out” (where the mantra is “they are your children, love them”) and stacks of books and videos have helped…

    Experts (including a doctoral level therapist in our church) agree on one thing: Nobody really knows how it happens. I personally think it might be bilogical (NOT genetic) and environmental. But it’s not as much a choice… more like a final surrender. I’ll tell you one thing – when you put a face on it, it’s a whole lot less theoretical.

    Is change possible? With God all things are possible, but I am not Him. So I take my son as he is today and love him passionately!

  49. Fred says:

    OK, I don’t feel so great today and all I can say is puke. Sorry.

  50. fishon says:

    Brandon:
    Fishon said:

    I do NOT know what you are talking about. I did NOT reference the story you are talking about

    Response:

    Sure you did.

    “fishon on Tue, May 25, 2010

    ————Rick, what constitutes a “stone thrower,” in your opinion?————-Could it be something like: The acts of the sinful nature are obvious…I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this WILL NOT [caps mine] inherit the kingdom of God.”
    /end quote

    ——–Oh! Yea, I went back and saw where I asked that question in reference to Rick’s previous statement:
    My point is that many heterosexual stone throwers are manifesting the same “God’s blessing” deception about their sin as do men like Boltz.

  51. fishon says:

    Brandon on Wed, May 26, 2010
    @fishon

    Rick hasn’t change grace in any manner, fishon. Grace is something that’s provisioned for without exception to every person, everywhere. We didn’t earn it. We can’t lose it.
    ———-Oh yea, it is extended to everyone, but not everyone accepts it. And the Bible says, “…and so have shipwrecked their faith.” Can’t shipwreck faith unless you had faith.
    Are you a follower of Carlton Pearson’s teaching, “Everyone will be saved?”

    Brandon said: Jesus said it’s finished. Not “it’s finished, except for these couple last things you need to do, personally.”
    ———-Ah then, I guess you believe Peter got it wrong on the day the church was born—-the day the first church sermon was preached—–the day the first question was asked about what they should do———-and the day the first answer ways given by Peter:”Repent…and be baptized.”

    Poor old Peter, denied Christ, then gets it wrong the first time out during the first church sermon.

    Brandon said::And as we read in the story, Jesus didn’t condemn the woman in adultery. He forgave her without her asking, in the midst of what she was doing. That’s where transformation happens. When you can extend that kind love, without judgment and condemnation, or rules and regulations, things begin changing in people.

    What do you believe grace to be, fishon?
    ————-Well, if you are using your above quote, and you are citing it as grace———you needed to finish Jesus’ words. “Go and sin no more.” ————-WHY DID YOU LEAVE THAT OUT, BRANDON?

  52. fishon says:

    Kevin,
    I could tell you a similar story about my prositute daughter. We all have junk.

  53. Shawn Wilson says:

    Brandon,
    Are you saying that homosexuality is NOT sin? Because I would love to know how you came to that conclusion when scripture clearly calls it just that. Please explain.

  54. Dee says:

    Jim B asks, “Besides, has anyone talked to Ray’s wife and kids? I’m sure they’re not so accepting of his new-found freedoms.”

    Hmmm. That’s not exactly true, considering his ex-wife is now on the Board of Directors of Soulforce and some of his kids have been pretty outspoken about how they support their dad and his coming out. From what the latest NY Times article says, and from Carol Boltz’s blog, it seems like the whole family supports him pretty wholeheartedly.

    His ex-wife Carol has a blog: http://myheartgoesout-carol.blogspot.com that tells her side of the story, and she’s pretty much the picture of a loving response to this kind of situation.

  55. @fishon: looks like you finished the verse out for me. thanks!

    Could you please unclick the caps lock? It makes it appear like you’re yelling and its hard to read.

    Why did I leave out the verse? Idk. Why didn’t I just copy the whole chapter? I think you missed the point of that whole interaction. It was not about her not sinning. It was about the religious establishment not caring for her as a whole person. All they wanted to do was judge and stone her. Jesus turned them away and didn’t condemn the woman. Even ‘go and sin no more’ isn’t a condemnation; it’s an admonishment. Almost like ‘hey. you almost died here because you messed up. don’t do that anymore or you might end up right back here’.

  56. @Shawn Wilson.

    Tis true. I do not believe homosexuality is a sin.

    Being that this isn’t my blog, I don’t think it’s fare that I hijack the topic to unpack this idea.

    I’ve got some pieces I’m preparing to publish on my blog that might help in understanding this departure from conventional, pop-church culture beliefs.

  57. @Shawn Wilson.

    One thing I would add.

    As I’ve said before on this thread: The Bible doesn’t *clearly* state homosexuality is a sin. This discussion has gone on as long as it has because it’s not ‘clearly stated’. Your interpretation of translation may state it clearly, but that doesn’t mean it’s true.

  58. fishon says:

    Brandon Mouser on Thu, May 27, 2010
    @fishon: looks like you finished the verse out for me. thanks!

    Could you please unclick the caps lock? It makes it appear like you’re yelling and its hard to read.
    ———-Sorry the cap thing offended you. Not yelling, just emphasis.

    Why did I leave out the verse? Idk. Why didn’t I just copy the whole chapter? I think you missed the point of that whole interaction. It was not about her not sinning. It was about the religious establishment not caring for her as a whole person. All they wanted to do was judge and stone her.
    ———Yes, his talking to them was that.

    Jesus turned them away and didn’t condemn the woman. Even ‘go and sin no more’ isn’t a condemnation; it’s an admonishment.
    ———-Good, glad you see it that way. “Brandon, go and sin no more.”

  59. Peter Hamm says:

    Brandon writes [I’ve got some pieces I’m preparing to publish on my blog that might help in understanding this departure from conventional, pop-church culture beliefs.] It’s not a pop-church culture thing, Brandon. The arguments that I’ve heard (and you will doubtless re-visit on your blog) simply use revisionist lexicology. Saying that words mean something different than thay’ve meant for centuries, and even millenia. I respect and appreciate your interaction here, but you probably need to know that we’ve heard this before (at least I have).

    Bless you, though!

  60. george says:

    i agree with brandon. i don’t think God ever hated Ray. I am glad Ray Boltz came out, I am glad Jennifer did. I think the Gay communty within/without Christianity has a lot to teach the Church.

    And when people call it sin it taps into this other gene within us, the selfish gene. the one jesus talked about, the ‘dying to myself’ gene that counters the selfish gene. sin in the aramaic is about who we are becoming. not what’s wrong with us. sure, sin can be about what’s wrong with us. and how we get it wrong. but the hebrew mind toward sin is that we aren’t being the best us intended. and its another word for selfish. and jesus showed us how to deal with that by dying on the cross, not that he even necessarily died for our sins, but that dying to ourselves leads to resurrection of who we are meant to be. sin, death, resurrection, these are about the process of rebirth. thanks for your music Ray, you’ve changed a lot of lives bro. thanks!

  61. Q. says:

    Hey George, are you saying that Jesus didn’t die for our sins but that it was more of an ‘object lesson’?

  62. george says:

    in part, yes. we are the memories of god. how we live our lives. how we react to the other will help determine whether like Christ we have died or are heading towards resurrection. do i believe he died? yes. do i believe he rose again? yes. but for the purpose we’ve been told, not necessarily. or i might say that it is just one of many reasons he could have died, i know its ambigious, but i am look at his death as a lesson for us all, rather than specifying to history alone, it also teaches us how to be and how we can be more like Him. but of course, the point of my post wasn’t this, it was that sin in the hebrew mind is different from sin in the christian mind (jesus was a jew, right?) :)

  63. Brandon says:

    @Peter Hamm:

    IMO, it is a tenant of pop-church culture.

    We can draw many historic parallels to homosexuality in the church: oppression of women, slavery, greed, murder, etc. They were all perfectly acceptable beliefs fully backed by a societal interpretation of biblical literature. But they were all determined to be wrong.

    Revisionist Lexicology is not as detrimental a practice as it is made to be. In my opinion it’s a more honest approach to faith.

    It says that we understand that we could be wrong in our interpretation and implementation of words in scripture and are open to new information which provides a catalyst to change and evolve, regardless of our preference.

    For Christians, I believe we have far more faith in the Bible than we do in the Holy Spirit’s ability to guide and change us.

    Again, this is not easy. Many people believe this position is the ‘easy way out’. That it’s an argument of convenience. ‘I don’t like the way this sounds, so I’m going to change the meanings of these words to better accommodate my worldview.’

    I would submit that it’s the opposite. If you knew me and the family I come from, you would understand that this is not a convenient position that I’m taking. It’s not been convenient to the previous faith communities in which I’ve served. It’s not been convenient to my closest friends. It’s not been convenient with to family. And it’s not convenient to my wife.

    But in my pursuit of the way of Jesus, my Spirit is at peace on this matter.

    Understand that I’m not pushing anyone in to the position I hold. I believe my tenor in this discussion is evident of that. Your decision in this matter in no way effects my decision.

    We have a choice to agree to disagree in this matter and still work together as the hands and feet of God. We also have the choice to let this issue divide us.

    I’m choosing the former.

  64. Peter Hamm says:

    Brandon writes [Revisionist Lexicology is not as detrimental a practice as it is made to be. In my opinion it’s a more honest approach to faith.] Seems more like re-making the faith, the church, the Bible, and even God in the image we want them to be. Honesty would be making my faith into what God wants it to be, not what works for my own desires, passions, etc. I’m aware that many in the contemporary church do this with other issues. For instance, why is homosexual behavior railed at in the Evangelical community, but gluttony is celebrated. But using the contemporary church’s laxity in some areas to explain away a departure from what Scripture is clear on by revising our understanding of words, is far from an honest approach to faith.

    I’ve heard and researched these arguments, and they are not compelling, I’m sorry to say.

  65. fishon says:

    george on Thu, May 27, 2010
    i agree with brandon. i don’t think God ever hated Ray. I am glad Ray Boltz came out, I am glad Jennifer did. I think the Gay communty within/without Christianity has a lot to teach the Church.
    ————–No, they have nothing to teach the Church.

  66. fishon says:

    Time for me to bow out of this—Time for me to stop dialoguing with “godless men, who change the grace of our God into a license for immorality.”

    The Bible speaks plainly about “savage wolves will come in among you and will not spare the flock.”

    Harsh, yep, but then I didn’t write it; God’s apostles did. Enough for me of trying to reason with one who has ‘shipwrecked’ his faith, and is using this site to bring others down with him.

    To continue to debate with him makes him wise in his own eyes.

    You who would say I am harsh and judgmental, so be it. You continue to try and reason and coddle “certain men whose condemnation was written about long ago have secretly slipped in among [us]. They are godless me, who change the grace of our God into a license for immorality….”

  67. Brandon says:

    @fishon.

    Fare enough. But we love you fishon.

    Regardless of your words and judgment: We love you.

    Regardless of our differences: We love you.

    May God continue to direct your heart and mind in all matters.

    Grace and Peace.

  68. Peter Hamm says:

    Fishon, hold the door open, I think I have to leave right behind you…

  69. george says:

    fishon. we do love you. but being black and white about something has nothing to do with whether you love homosexuals or not; i am not questioning that. but, are you willing to change? are you willing to see it a different way? if you think about truth like a room with many windows, than what you see out of one and what i see out of one aren’t wrong because we’re still in the same room, but see truth from different angles. are you willing to see that truth is bigger than your theology, bigger than my theology, bigger than the bible and christianity or do you believe truth as big as it is is oNLYcontained in all of the above?

  70. Cj says:

    Just to shine a little light of clarity here, God does not only hate the sin, but because of the sin he also hates the sinner, this only proves his love to be genuine:
    Romans 12:9
    Let love be genuine. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good.

    This abhorring or hating what is evil is not limited to only hating the evil acts, but also hating the evil person as shown here:
    Psalm 5:5
    The boastful shall not stand before your eyes;
    you hate all evildoers

    and here

    Psalm 11:5
    The Lord tests the righteous,
    but his soul hates the wicked and the one who loves violence.
    6 Let him rain coals on the wicked;
    fire and sulfur and a scorching wind shall be the portion of their cup.
    7 For the Lord is righteous;
    he loves righteous deeds;
    the upright shall behold his face.

    This just shows the magnitude of the affect that our sin has on our relationship with God. And it just magnifies his grace because even through this hate he has for those that are dead in their sins, he still finds away to love them and send his Son to die so that they can be conformed to his image and not die in their sins. Pure grace!

  71. george says:

    @ CJ: It seems youre defining clarity in an objective sense, but as you might agree, clarity to you and clarity to me can be two completely different things. Using scripture as a point of clarity isn’t clarity to me. Its misusing scripture.

    I would also ask if you are aware of your historical contigency?

    that there were authors who composed their oral stories. authors who lived and breathed in a culture with a language not our own. this is good to keep in mind when approaching scripture. that it wasn’t a book meant to forcefully direct nations or peoples. sure, it has that capacity. but so does a book by john grisham. i am saying that god can speak through anything not just a collection of 66 books of oral stories. to bind ourselves to the bible as being the only book that god can speak through is to follow a very small god. not to mention to one that has to be bound to something.

    love is the ultimate reality, not sin. by focusing on sin as a big deal we denigrate the traditional orthodox view of jesus dying on the cross. it also focuses on a problem that was already taken care, and if we focus on a problem that has already been taken care we are actually saying it hasn’t been taken care of, if you agree to the orthodox view of the cross.

  72. Danny says:

    As I read over all the comments in this particular post I was extremely saddened.

    Saddened by men who seem to have an abundant knowledge of Scripture yet would say that the truth contained in it is relative.

    Saddened by our readiness to allow sin, any sin, to carry on as simply being the way one was created.

    It seems that we have forgotten the words of Jesus to those that he healed and forgave. “Now go, and sin no more.” He did not say, “now go, and do whatever you want, however you see fit, you have liberty in me to do all things.”

    I can already tell that some will say, “but what if it isn’t sin.” There has to be some way of knowing what is sin and what isn’t. Not just a mere gut feeling that we could all say, “well that’s what the spirit’s telling me.”

    Maybe the largest problem in the church is that we haven’t learned how to distinguish between God and gas.

  73. george says:

    but why focus on an issue that has already been annihilated? i am going along with the belief that christ died for our sins right? i will agree to that for this discussion, if we do agree on that, than christ already annihilated sin. past tense. done. ‘it is finished’. so why focus on it?

    and then if there STILL is sin, which yes there is evil, but evil and sin are differentiated in the hebrew mind. than who gets to determine what it is? and then who gets to determine who is righteous enough to judge another (let him who has no sin cast the first stone) — i am still waiting for a response to all these questions? because obviously it seems that there are some that think as humans we have a right to destructively point the finger, an act that has caused and is causing many wars. so how is pointing the finger healing the world? wouldn’t it make more sense to love others, embrace people. love the broken, the danger is that we forget that we never stop being broken.

  74. Christ never taught to “classify” or to “categorize” sinners. But He teach us that we are ALL sinners and that God is less concerned wiht the sin than He is with simply redeeming and reforming the heart of the sinner.

    For the record, I am Straight. However, I will at least submit that all of those fellow believers who are continually berating the Homosexual Community each and everyone have their own personal “closets” of some type of weakness, vulnerability to temptation to come out of….regardless of whatever the specific weakness and/or vulnerability is or isn’t. There are 2 types of Christians in the world. 1) Those who admit they too have their own struggles and 2) those who LIE and say they don’t. And none of us are better or holier than another. And we will ALL continue on that path of growth and sanctification until we die.

  75. It was never given to us to judge or condemn. It was only given to us to discern, pray for others who struggle alongside on the Christian journey; to humbly forgive and to love them BEYOND their sin just as Christ did for us.

  76. george says:

    right on rich. i just wanted to add that sin isn’t the point. that helping people become better people to me is the gospel. not fixing people of something that has almost become over-mythical within christianity. that are job is to look beyond sin almost as if it doesn’t exist and see the person for who they are meant to be but love them as they are, but i think it also starts with us doing the same with ourselves first. most of the problem with judgement is because people don’t love themselves enough, think about that for a second.

  77. CS says:

    george:

    “that helping people become better people to me is the gospel.”

    There’s your problem right there. The Gospel is that Christ died for the sins of the ungodly. Check 1 Corinthians 15 for a more detailed explanation of what we are supposed to be proclaiming.

    And, yes, homosexuality is a sin.


    CS

  78. george says:

    CS: ‘there’s my problem”? — that’s incredibly dangerous language; people in history have used that language that thought what they were doing was right. but wasn’t, it ended up killing sacred life, just a quick warning when youre in a discussion not to use that.

    and if we’re in a discussion saying that something is ‘sin’ isn’t enough to prove that it is.

    and who said that was the gospel? that could be easily what paul thought the gospel, but he could be a wrong (he was human after all) and two he never divulges a step-by-step process on what the gospel is or should be.

    plus jesus spoke aramaic more than he spoke greek. in aramaic the word gospel is ‘sevartha’ — it doesn’t mean someone needs to pray to accept jesus to be saved. it just means ‘hope’ and nothing else, no additives or preservatives, just hope. and that looks different for each person, and since it does look different for each person it means we have no arrogant right to just what the gospel should or shouldn’t be. love, love is the answer, unless we believe that love isn’t strong enough, is that what you’re saying?

  79. CS says:

    george:

    “and who said that was the gospel? that could be easily what paul thought the gospel, but he could be a wrong (he was human after all) and two he never divulges a step-by-step process on what the gospel is or should be.”

    Congratulations, you’ve just denied the infallibility of Scripture.

    “love, love is the answer, unless we believe that love isn’t strong enough, is that what you’re saying?”

    What’s the question, again?


    CS

  80. george says:

    i think you have assumed i have denied the infallibility of scripture.

    if i have denied anything, i may have denied your definition of infallibility. and jesus invites us into a place of denial. ‘you must die to yourself’ he says quite a bit, dying to what though? dying to our answers, dying to our theology, dying to our status, dying to ourselves isn’t just dying in certain parts, its dying to everything.

    i have re-pasted the question here “love, love is the answer, unless we believe that love isn’t strong enough, is that what you’re saying? ”

    what i am asking is if you think that love isn’t as strong as sin? and if you think that our role is go around pointing out sin or is it god’s role?

    do you also recognize your/mine historical contingency? they were jews not westerners, they spoke aramaic, not english or greek (most of the writers wrote in aramaic; google ‘aramaic primacy’) — gospel even in the greek has no connection to the idea of jesus dying on the cross or rising from the dead. the gospel was news of victory or a gift given to a messenger. the gift itself was called the gospel. so then the gospel is when give ourselves (‘die to ourselves’) to another.

  81. CS says:

    george:

    “and jesus invites us into a place of denial. ‘you must die to yourself’ he says quite a bit, dying to what though? dying to our answers, dying to our theology, dying to our status, dying to ourselves isn’t just dying in certain parts, its dying to everything.”

    And how do you know this? Using your logic for Paul, those words that Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John could have been wrong, too, because they were just human beings.

    “what i am asking is if you think that love isn’t as strong as sin? and if you think that our role is go around pointing out sin or is it god’s role?”

    How do you believe people get convicted of sin?

    “the gospel was news of victory or a gift given to a messenger.”

    Again, what is that message? Paul summarized it pretty clearly.


    CS

  82. george says:

    I noticed you didn’t answer my last two questions about ‘whether its our (other flawed humans; “let him who has no sin…”) place to condemn/others? if the message of jesus was a ‘free gift’ like so many say, why is that they have to jump through hoops to get it? and if it is free than why do ‘christians’ feel the need to make cursory judgements when jesus, more than any other thing, focuses on love as the answer…so what are ‘we’ saying when all we do is focus on the opposite? i mean someone could ‘believe’ all the ‘right’ things about jesus and still not get his message. either we are to love others or condemn them, which is it? if its the former than it seems we are followers, if its the latter than we are claiming self-deification.

    and yeah, youre right, matthew, mark, luke probably could be wrong as well. they were human. but that wasn’t the point of my question preceding that?

  83. CS says:

    george:

    “I noticed you didn’t answer my last two questions about ‘whether its our (other flawed humans; “let him who has no sin…”) place to condemn/others?”

    According to John 3:18, they’re already condemned. We proclaim the Law in presenting the Gospel so that people will become convicted of sin (Psalm 19:7; Galatians 3:24). And you’ve also taken that quote from John 8 out of context.

    “if the message of jesus was a ‘free gift’ like so many say, why is that they have to jump through hoops to get it?”

    It is a free gift. And if a person is saved, they will respond by repenting of their sins and placing their faith in Christ. That means that they will turn away from their old lifestyles of sin (1 Corinthians 6:9-11). That’s no jumping through hoops; that’s the outward evidence of the new creation.

    “and if it is free than why do ‘christians’ feel the need to make cursory judgements when jesus, more than any other thing, focuses on love as the answer…”

    I’d recommend reading through 1 John, which both says that God is Love (4:8), and for the key signs that a person is saved (5:13). One of which is that we abide not actively in sin (3:18).

    “i mean someone could ‘believe’ all the ‘right’ things about jesus and still not get his message. ”

    You’re right. Matthew 7 testifies to that.

    “either we are to love others or condemn them, which is it? if its the former than it seems we are followers, if its the latter than we are claiming self-deification.”

    We do love them. And sometimes, in loving someone, you have to say, “Hey, you’re doing it wrong.”

    “and yeah, youre right, matthew, mark, luke probably could be wrong as well. they were human. but that wasn’t the point of my question preceding that?”

    I was being facetious in that response to you. Now, if you are being serious and denying the infallibility of the Bible because the authors are merely human, then I would say that you are in really dangerous territory. That would be a denial of 2 Timothy 3:16, and as a primary-level issue, it could be described as heresy.


    CS

  84. george says:

    CS: thanks for the thoughts.

    It still seems that you are comfortable with the idea that you or anyone who is or might be conceived as ‘righteous’ has a right/responsible to point another fault out, am I right in assuming this?

    also, jesus spoke aramaic right? the hebrew word for condemn means to be ‘led astray’, it also connotes the idea that whatever one’s behaviour is leads them away; but it also gives the idea that whatever they choose if it leads them in a bad direction (ex: stealing) than them going to jail is their condemnation. not someone saying they are a sinner or that what they’ve done is wrong. it isn’t our role to point the finger-ever. Paul (a human flawed author) said in four chapters that it wasn’t our role to judge others. the word for judge in the greek means to divinely judge/point the finger/blame/or say ‘youre doing it wrong’. what he was saying was that when we decide to ‘help’ someone along we are stepping in and calling ourselves god. i would also add when we define sin and point the fingers, not only are we the first to cast stones, we are the first to condemn/judge of which we are encouraged not to do.

    i also think its dangerous to apply scripture to every situation, like the old example of ‘judas hung himself, go and do likewise’. scripture was speaking into a time, in a language with a culture. if anything we all are writing scripture now with our lives. a good book to read on all this is by author karen armstrong in a book called ‘the bible:biography’. that when they (humans) were compiling their oral story, they weren’t intending others to go and make ‘doctrine’ out of it. there is laces of their own theology throughout, sure, but its their theology. we can glean from it, but it would be dangerous to assume it should be ours. that is literary colonization.

    also the ancients jews thought it was their responsibility to wrestle with scripture. they had this myth story about a guy named jacob who wrestled with an angel as a metaphor for questioning and grappling with scripture, none of scripture was off-limits. they also believed each scripture had up to 70 different interpretations. 70!

    the idea behind the timothy letter again is a letter first and foremost dealing with issues and instructing a young new church planter. in a context. and god-breathed means alive. and god-breathed is what we are. we are god-breathed, scripture is god-breathed, therefore we are scripture. our lives are scripture. and if something is alive it means it grows, changes, matures and evolves, this is the same for scripture.

    also feel free to follow the link to my website and see if your words stand true (if i am a *heretic*).

  85. CS says:

    george:

    “It still seems that you are comfortable with the idea that you or anyone who is or might be conceived as ‘righteous’ has a right/responsible to point another fault out, am I right in assuming this?”

    How do you define the preaching the Law of God (Ten Commandments) for the Holy Spirit to work the conviction of sin?

    “Paul (a human flawed author) said in four chapters that it wasn’t our role to judge others.”

    Verses, please? Oh, wait. That’s right…

    “i also think its dangerous to apply scripture to every situation, like the old example of ‘judas hung himself, go and do likewise’.”

    Hmmm…

    “that when they (humans) were compiling their oral story, they weren’t intending others to go and make ‘doctrine’ out of it.”

    So when Paul wrote Timothy and said that all scripture was profitable for doctrine, I guess he didn’t really mean, “ALL,” then?

    “they had this myth story about a guy named jacob who wrestled with an angel as a metaphor for questioning and grappling with scripture, none of scripture was off-limits.”

    “Myth story?” Do you believe this event actually happened as described in the Bible?

    “also feel free to follow the link to my website and see if your words stand true (if i am a *heretic*). ”

    I didn’t see a statement of faith. Do you happen to have a concise area where you outline your theological statements? For example, here are three yes or no questions that would sort things out for me:

    -Do you believe that a person who has never heard of Jesus Christ can go to Heaven of their own merit?

    -Do you believe in the Trinity, including the deity of Christ?

    -Do you believe in the literal virgin birth, crucifixion, and resurrection of Jesus Christ?


    CS

  86. george says:

    “How do you define the preaching the Law of God (Ten Commandments) for the Holy Spirit to work the conviction of sin?”

    Coming from a Jewish perspective, The ten commandments were a covenant between the jewish people and God, not all of mankind; the noahide laws were made for all of mankind. (Note: some jewish historical documents didn’t even have moses receiving the Ten Commandments; you can verify this through the book I referred you to earlier – again, rather than disagreeing, check it out)

    In your question, you’re equating our role to that of the Holy Spirit. We aren’t the holy spirit. We aren’t to convict others of sin, Paul talks about that. That’s the role of the holy spirit alone. and all the words in matthew 28:19-20 (most call this the ‘great commission; some biblical historians wonder if jesus said this as well) — all the words he uses there aren’t literal, again, remember first they are poets.

    even the word baptise is the only place in matthew where baptise doesn’t mean to dunk someone; its a lifestyle term. all the words even preaching is connected with what your life is doing.

    in the west, we focus so much on words, in the east its more about action.

    I study a lot of the Jewish understanding of scripture, so some of what youre butting up against is that. Like for example, the story of Jacob wrestling the angel, that’s not a surprise its a myth, or the story of Job, the Hebrew writers were first poet-story-tellers then writers.

    For example, the story of Adam and Eve was a borrowed from a 22,000 year old cylinder seal, now instead of getting angry, research this. Rather than assuming I am wrong, find out. I think its important to remember that they were compiling their oral story for future generations. Also, the Paul statement about scripture was referring to the OT, they didnt’ have his (human, flawed) letters compiled just yet.

    i don’t have a statement of faith, because our lives should be that statement. the ancient jews believed that it didn’t matter what you believed about god, but how you lived your life orientated to that god. if you look at some of my blogs you can get a glimpse of where i am at,

    it seems you are very concerned about where i stand? we don’t need labels or statements of faith to have a conversation. we don’t need to believe the ‘same’ exact things unless you are intentionally trying to pigeon-hole me or label me; labels create distance between people; jesus was one such person who did his best to shatter labels. to shatter the gaps between people. we don’t need them.

  87. CS says:

    george:

    I’ll make this short. Given your previous statements of refuting the inerrancy of Scripture (the flawed author argument), calling stories in the Bible (including Adam and Eve, Jacob, Moses receiving the Ten Commandments), “myths,” your inability or unwillingness to answer simple questions about the Christian faith, and the limited information on your website that seems to be focused on the Emergent church and other unorthodox theology, you would appear to be a heretic.

    It gives me no pleasure in saying that, and I know the gravity of saying such a thing. Please repent of your sins and put your faith in Christ.


    CS

  88. george says:

    does it make you feel better now that you have a label? does it make you feel like you can ‘box’ me in/control me and the conversation? i am asking sincerely. because it does seem like you do?

    also, i guess you’re saying that ‘one can lose their salvation’ (which means healing; not saying a prayer to save one’s soul – i am not changing anything, just going back to definitions; we seem too comfortable with spouting theology over what words we are choosing; when the words themselves don’t have the meanings we have added) – and i you are saying one can lose their salvation, than you are claiming to be a deity; if you are saying one can lose their salvation than you also are saying that the value of life is summed up with one decision, i believe in a God that is bigger than that.

  89. CS says:

    george:

    “does it make you feel better now that you have a label? does it make you feel like you can ‘box’ me in/control me and the conversation? i am asking sincerely. because it does seem like you do?”

    No, it makes me feel sad, honestly. I hate it when people think that they have the truth, but the truth is not within them. For example…

    “also, i guess you’re saying that ‘one can lose their salvation’ (which means healing; not saying a prayer to save one’s soul – i am not changing anything, just going back to definitions”

    Sigh. This is why I hate it so much, because for all your trying to understand what salvation is, you miss the mark entirely.

    And, no, people cannot lose their salvation. Instead, more of those who claim to be saved have never been, which makes it even worse. I fear this is the case with you.

    Please, before God calls your life debt due, repent of your sins and go to Christ.


    CS

  90. george says:

    CS: it seems you are assuming God is one-sided. It seems you are assuming truth is one-sided. Paul was in the court-yards of Athens validating Greek philosopy (‘other religions’) . Truth never once converted to Christianity. Truth isn’t just in christianity. To assume so is to assume that God is small.

    To espouse yourself to a system where you feel the need to oppress others with religious talk is in no way loving however you try to justify your behaviour. In fact, its religious hegemony.

    you seem to project this sort of (albeit, maybe unintentional) arrogance; as if God (albeit, according to some of your views, who seems very small) has bestowed on you the responsibility to condemn and judge others.

    all i have done here is share some jewish (remember,the authors were jewish, not english or greek speaking (some were in the NT) – they spoke aramaic and hebrew and were semitic, not christian. all i have done is share with you some of their language and because it counters what you have been taught you automatically assume i am damned to hell or don’t have ‘the truth’; think about that, how destructive is that attitude. there was hitler and the pharisees and others who thought the same. love, not theology is the answer. love, not right answers, love. and i have even encouraged you to go and check and verify what i am saying but since you have responded so quickly, i can only assume you haven’t and maybe don’t even want to, because you are ‘secure’ in your faith. if you’re that secure, than why are you so afraid to check out the things i have said? it tells me the exact opposite of what you are trying to project when all you do is respond. again i invite you to check on some of the things i have said rather than simply respond with rhetoric.

  91. judy laney says:

    I am so saddened that Ray Boltz is doing what God says is wrong. God has never hated Ray, and God loves everyone, but God does not love any sin. Jesus died on the cross to cover all sins. Sin is sin. Our society is coming out of the closet for what. To destroy themselves. It is a choice to be gay. You are not born with it. Yes there a feminine men, and there are boy girls, but to say you are to be with the same sex God says NO. Our society is now condoning anything and everything evil or bad, and everything that is meant for good is stupid. Christians do not hate if they are true Christians. We are in the end times, as everything is moving faster and faster, and people are becoming more and more desencitized to just about everything. All roads do not lead to heaven. Read Gods word which is the only truth on this planet earth. One day all will know this. Change before it is too late.

  92. george says:

    one question: are you homosexual? – then how do you know its not/or a choice?

    you can’t make that judgement call.

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