Harrisburg votes to drop Boy Scout troop

images-4By Riley Manning/Daily Journal

TUPELO – The future of Boy Scout Troop 85 is up in the air after the troop’s host church, Harrisburg Baptist Church, voted not to renew the troop’s charter.
The Rev. Forrest Sheffield, pastor of the church, said the entire congregation was invited to attend and cast their vote Sunday night.

“We had around 250 present Sunday night, and the vote was very one-sided,” Sheffield said. “It was a very heartbreaking decision for all of us, for our Scouts and our church family.”

The decision by Harrisburg, the largest congregation in Northeast Mississippi, was prompted by a change in Boy Scout membership policy allowing openly gay Scouts. Sheffield said the church has been deliberating heavily and prayerfully since the Boy Scout National Council announced the change in May.

“We felt like we had to take a stand, and this is the only way to do that. We felt backed into a corner on this,” Sheffield said. “I’m actually proud of my church for being firm on it.”

Sheffield said the congregation was made aware of the vote two weeks before hand, and he was not surprised by their decision.

As for Troop 85, Scout home to more than 70 Scouts, they face disbanding if they do not find another sponsoring organization.

“I’m confident some other group will pick up Troop 85’s charter,” Sheffield said.

A Troop 85 representative confirmed that contacts had begun with other churches to secure a sponsor.

The Southern Baptist Convention recently urged local congregations to reconsider their relationship with the Boy Scouts, but several churches of other denominations who sponsor troops in Tupelo have indicated they will continue to do so.
Sheffield said the church would now align with the On My Honor movement, a national coalition of parents, Scout masters, Eagle Scouts, donors and other Boy Scout members in the process of creating an alternative program to the Boy Scouts.

The Royal Ambassadors, the Southern Baptist Convention’s youth development program, was considered as a replacement, but Sheffield said it would be redundant.

“The Royal Ambassadors are heavy on mission teaching, and we already have a separate program at Harrisburg that does the same thing,” he said. “We are going to use this opportunity to be involved in a program that teaches our boys values.”
riley.manning@journalinc.com

  • Teri Green

    How very sad that a church, professing to mirror the actions of Christ, would cut ties with an organization that has consistently raised up fine young men and good citizens. What would Jesus do? I think he would keep the Scouts and be an example and love them the way He loved everyone else.

    • Gray

      Teri, you obviously do not know your Bible very well. Christ never associated with those who were arrogant about their sin. Harrisburg is being a mirror of Christ. They are standing up for what He said was wrong. Like Christ did when He emptied the temple of those who were arrogant and being disobedient to God. Way to go Harrisburg!

      • FrereJocques

        …the difference being that gay people are not arrogant or being disobedient to God. To many heterosexuals, gay people are arrogant simply because they exist. Religious heterosexuals, even more so. These people will simply not accept that your sexual orientation is NOT a choice. The fact that THEY never had to make a choice is somehow lost on them. I still have yet to hear ONE heterosexual person give me the date and the time he decided to be heterosexual. It’s always, “I was born this way, I was never inclined to be gay”……DUH! Gay people were born that way, too. What illogic concludes that gay people get to decide, and straight people don’t?

        The Harrisburg vote is a perfect example of why I quit going to church.

      • John John

        Your argument would make sense if Jesus had said anything about homosexuality. Are you a Paulian or a Christian? Homosexuality is as frowned upon in the Bible as eating shellfish is.

        • TupeloRob

          John John,

          You are showing your lack of knowledge on
          the Bible by confusing the Bible’s teachings on sin with Old Testament
          Lewish Levitical law regarding eating particular foods (in this case
          shellfish).

          In the New Testament, Christians who wouldn’t eat shellfish because they thought it sinful were actually referred to by the Apostle Paul as “weaker” in their faith. (Romans 14). But the Bible continues to define homosexuality as “sin” very clearly, even in the New Testament, 1 Corinthians 6:9-11 and 1Timothy 1:8-10)

        • Jerry Patterson

          You obviously don’t know anything about the Bible. Far from saying nothing about Sodomy, Jesus said Sodomites were excluded from heaven and had their part in the “lake of fire.” Moreover, Jesus used Sodomites as an example of t he worst kind of wicked sinners. Of course, he said those that refuse to submit to him were worse. Next time you make such a statement, check your Bible. And even if Jesus did not say anything about Sodomy, that does not make it any less sinful. Certainly his Apostles did. What Paul said was that those who endorse this would be given up to a reprobate mind, that is to say that those who don’t know Sodomy is wrong, lose their ability to determine what is right or wrong about anything.

          • 1941641

            Jerry Patterson To John John

            “You obviously don’t know anything about the Bible. Far from saying nothing about Sodomy, Jesus said Sodomites were excluded from heaven and had their part in the [‘lake of fire.’] Moreover, Jesus used Sodomites as an example of t he worst kind of wicked sinners. Of course, he said those that refuse to submit to him were worse. Next time you make such a statement, check your Bible.

            [ And even if Jesus did not say anything about Sodomy, that does not make it any less sinful.”]

            Maybe, Jerry, it’s time for you to pause and take stock of what you wrote. The Bible, as we all know, is written in a format that includes: Book, Chapter, Verse. You state that Jesus related some specific problems with Sodomy. “…Jesus said Sodomites were excluded from heaven and had their part in the “lake of fire….” That’s interesting scripture to most people out there in the world. Why not share a reference to this block of scripture so all readers can check the scripture ( “check your Bible you said” ) for themselves and bookmark it in their Bibles? Don’t say you were acting in the glory of God and He told you to dismiss that reference mumbo-jumbo. So, consequently, you did what God instructed you to do. That’s not acceptable to most people and I know you want to make it clear what you meant and not leave any loose ends hanging on. Hope to hear from you soon.

          • FrereJocques

            “Next time you make such a statement, check your Bible”

            You would do well to follow your own advice, and be sure you are not taking quotes out of context as well as being sure you know what you’re talking about. Have you REALLY read what the Bible says about the “sin” of Sodom and Gomorrah?

            Ezekial 16:49-50 says, “Now this was the sin of your sister Sodom:
            She and her daughters were arrogant, overfed and unconcerned; they did
            not help the poor and needy. They were haughty and did detestable things things before me…”. Now what are “detestable things”? Not necessarily gay people in a loving, committed relationship, but you can definitely include things like rape (whether heterosexual or homosexual), incest, and molestation. Also notice that “detestable things” comes last on this list, not first. So how important is it compared to the other sins?

            Paul alludes to Sodom and Gomorrah in Hebrews 13:2, where he says, “Do not forget to show hospitality to strangers, for by so doing some people have shown hospitality to angels without knowing it.” Again, the sin is how we treat other people, not homosexuality.

            Isaiah Chapter 1 compares Israel to Sodom and Gomorrah, and lists many sins. Never once does it mention homosexuality.

            Jeremiah 23:14 compares the Prophets of Jerusalem to Sodom and Gomorrah, mentioning the sins of adultery and lying. No mention of Homosexuality.

            Matthew 10:14,15 Says that inhospitality is a worse sin that those of Sodom and Gomorrah.

            Other texts mention ungodly, lawlessness, and depravity, again, nothing to do with loving, caring people.

            Funny how you people will strain at the gnat to pick out gay people as horrible sinners and overlook all the other far more horrendous sins that people commit.

          • Jerry Patterson

            I do read all of my Bible. Sounds to me that you avoid the fact that the Sodomites are condemned to hell because of their Sodomy. The Bible definitely does say this. E.g. Jude 7

            In a similar way, Sodom and Gomorrah and the surrounding towns gave themselves up to sexual immorality and perversion. They serve as an example of those who suffer the punishment of eternal fire. NIV You will note that their sin for which they are an example of all Sodomites, was sexual perversion, and it is for eternity. As to what Jesus said in Matthew 10, He was talking about the God-called preachers and the treatment of them. His primary emphasis was not hospitality, but the response to the carriers of the message to repent. You cannot excuse Sodomy, nor its penalty by saying that Jesus did not say anything about it. Moreover, the term “dog,” in the ancient Hebrew and Greek was the term for homosexual male. But, in case you deny this, he went on to say that they sexual immoral would have their part in t he “Lake of Fire” and be excluded from heaven, Revelation 21:7, 27, 22:14.

            I have spent my life-time dealing to why people believe things. They don’t believe things because they don’t want to believe them or, as in the case of Sodomy, but because God has given up them to a reprobate mind and they no longer have the ability to determine what is right and wrong. This is the case of someone that does not condemn Sodomy as being wrong.

            If you really want to know what the Bible says about Sodomites, and you study it, you will find that the Bible says in at least two places that God hates them. But, even many so-called Bible scholars deny this because it is more popular to say “God loves everybody and doesn’t hate anybody.”

          • FrereJocques

            Jude 7 talks about many sins, including sex with angels and bestiality. The Greek words “sarkos heteras” are usually translated as “strange flesh”. Ironically, the Greek word “heteras” is the root word for our “heterosexual”. And all the other words used in the translations are not directly related to homosexuality, especially a loving, caring relationship. Fornication, immorality, and lust can apply to MANY different forms of abhorrent behavior; earlier translators simply chose the word de jour that fit what they wanted to say.

            “Sounds to me that you avoid the fact that the Sodomites are condemned to hell because of their Sodomy.”

            I don’t AVOID your statement, I just disagree with it. It’s YOUR interpretation, not MINE.

            “Moreover, the term “dog,” in the ancient Hebrew and Greek was the term for homosexual male.”

            I have never read that before. Please quote your source for this “fact”.

            “You cannot excuse Sodomy, nor its penalty by saying that Jesus did not say anything about it.”

            If this was so important, then why did Jesus never say anything about it? He would have known (Jesus knows all things, right?) that this would become a major issue in the last days. You would have a much bigger leg to stand on if he had addressed the issue directly and pointedly.

            “But, in case you deny this, he went on to say that they sexual immoral
            would have their part in t he “Lake of Fire” and be excluded from
            heaven,”

            Again, there are all kinds of sexual immorality, you just tend to emphasize what is your favorite taboo. I dare say God hates those who cheat on their wives, and rape others, more than he hates gay people in a loving family relationship.

            It looks to me like you have spent your life studying to prove what you already believe, and/or what you have been told. You don’t want answers or facts, you want echos. Since that’s what you look for, that’s all you see. Just because you think that way doesn’t mean everyone else does.

      • Tammy Rainey

        you are saying that young men and boys who wish to join the scouts but have not (yet?) come to your point of view regarding their sexuality are “arrogant” about thier “sin”?

        that’s a rather remarkable claim.

      • Tammy Rainey

        Christ also rebuked those who fancied themselves MOST obedient to god and MOST acquainted with his will because they elevated the traditions of men above the will of god. Sadly, many modern Christians fail to learn from that rebuke

      • TWBDB

        Weren’t the arrogant in the temple money changers and others posing as religious leaders? Christ opposed the hypocrite more than anything

    • W h hurst

      My friend, HBC has shown more love to my family more than I can ever give back. I have one Eagle and 4 more to be mentored. Just like science never should have interpreted the Bible, Scouts should never dictate Biblical manhood. A church is not called by God to have a scouting program but to mentor boys to be godly men which result in good citizens. BSA character, at one time paralleled the Bible and biblical manhood ( love God, Love others, including him loving his “wife” as Christ loved the church).
      All Hbc will do is find an organization that better fits the model of mentoring boys to be men. Citizenship then will fall into place. Do not let your heart be troubled. Hbc will continue to go fishing for men. That’s what Jesus would do. But not all men and women will repent…..because they love their lustful desires, in this case to push an agenda that could hurt little boys.

  • The-Facts

    I think this is the
    right decision. The boy scouts should not give to political
    pressure. This do what we want attitude or were going to sue has got to stop.
    The members voted!!!

    • FrereJocques

      The Boy Scouts didn’t give in to just “political pressure”. There was a realization by many that gay people are not given a choice of their sexual orientation, and they deserve the same considerations as straight people, and that discrimination against them is wrong and hurtful. They did the right thing. Of course, now all the religious bigots are going to try to punish them for it. And they’re not taking into account (probably they don’t realize it because most of them are not very smart) that they are hurting the KIDS more than the organization.

  • Jon

    Stay classy, Harrisburg Baptist Church. You bunch of two-faced bigots.

    • MartinH

      Classy, like you…?

      Seems to me that snarking about class, then engaging in name-calling, is kind of two-faced and not classy, not to mention bigoted against a class of people who have done more good in this community than most of us.

      • Jon

        I’m not the one excluding people while at the same time touting myself as a place of acceptance and love.

      • Winston Smith

        As far as local churches go, Harrisburg really doesn’t do very much for the community.

    • Bertholomew Stare

      Speaking of two-faced…..A little research goes a long way. Dr. Forrest Sheffield (harrisburg preacher) is on the Board of Directors at American Family Association. Weirdly, Randy Sharp (director of special projects for AFA), is the scoutmaster for troop 85. It appears that Randy Sharp has become the “Judas” is this whole scenario. He works for the most vocal group of anti-Boy Scout lobbyists, yet he is also a scoutmaster for the largest troop in the area. If I was troop 85, I would be ashamed that Randy Sharp was our scoutmaster to our face, and our enemy while rallying against us on the radio for AFA.

      • VocalCoach

        Want to do a little actual research there before you go slandering people, Bertholomew? Randy Sharp is NOT the scoutmaster of Troop 85. Greg O’Quinn is the scoutmaster.

  • the_rocket

    It’s their god-given right to hate and discriminate against anyone who doesn’t conform to their opinion.

    • Steve

      rocket I would almost guarantee that there is more hate in your little finger than in most church members. This is about the Bible and not about human beings and allowing sin. The church will continue to reach out to gays with counseling as they have for years. Your hate of the Church is clouding your judgement. May God bless you and soften your heart so you will know exactly what the Church REALLY means to the community.

      • FrereJocques

        “The church will continue to reach out to gays with counseling as they have for years”

        Steve, gay people DO NOT WANT YOUR COUNSELING. And you are arrogant and condescending to think that they need it. In case you missed it, very recently the largest ever “Gay Reparative” group, Exodus International, CLOSED ITS DOORS and apologized to gay people everywhere for what it had done, the damage it had caused. Founded originally by those who believed that gay people could be “Prayed straight”, the leaders (two men) themselves GOT MARRIED!

        Much psychological damage has been done to people, especially impressionable young people, by trying to change them from what God intended them to be. So much so that some states have now BANNED Gay Therapy within their borders. And the American Psychiatric Association has denounced the whole concept.

        WAKE UP, STEVE, and join us in the 21st. Century. And the same goes to the Harrisburg Baptist Church.

        • Steve

          FJ neither do many adulterers and sex addicts want counseling but still need it regardless. Whether you like it or not, or are just too uneducated biologically, homosexuality is not an acceptable behavior any more than adultery or pedophilia. Yes some states have outlawed homosexual counselling but it was done at the behest of a militant gay movement in the areas it was passed. Anecdotally, there are plenty of stories that oppose the Exodus story. The time in history has nothing to do with sin and abhorrent behavior and homosexuality is both. I pray that you can learn to understand that. If you aren’t a Christian, thus basically have no moral compass other than your own whimsy, I’m afraid you will never get it but God willing, you can change. I mean this sincerely. We cannot agree as long as you believe that sin doesn’t exist. It DOES and is ruining the lives of many of these folks and lack of mental health help is the REASON for the ruination . Statistics and studies show that clearly. May God bless.

          • Jon

            Steve, do you really believe that non-Christians have no moral compass?

          • FrereJocques

            “FJ neither do many adulterers and sex addicts want counseling but still need it regardless.”

            There you go again, stereotyping gay people. Homosexuals are no more likely to be adulterers or sex addicts than heterosexuals. Not true.

            “…or are just too uneducated biologically,”

            Please explain that statement. It makes no sense whatsoever.

            “homosexuality is not an acceptable behavior any more than adultery or pedophilia.”

            An obvious lie, obvious to anyone who simply looks around themselves and sees what is going on in the world today.

            “Yes some states have outlawed homosexual counselling but it was done at the behest of a militant gay movement in the areas it was passed.”

            It was done because REAL HARM was being done to those who entered the so-called “counseling”. And there were politicians who were able to see that, and witnesses who could corroborate it. Compassionate, honest, caring, and non-bigoted politicians voted for it and passed it.

            “Anecdotally, there are plenty of stories that oppose the Exodus story.”

            I’ve read some of them. What it all boils down to, is that the gay people learned to REPRESS their natural tendencies and avoid public expression of it. This caused them to live a constant lie, and behave in ways they had no desire to, all to fulfill someone else’s expectations of them. They tried to show love and affection for people they had no love or affection for. They were forced to reject those they DID love. Eventually their minds snapped under the strain, and they wound up with REAL mental problems. And THIS is what you propose for all gay people.

            “If you aren’t a Christian, thus basically have no moral compass other than your own whimsy,”

            I want to be sure you understand me, I TAKE GREAT OFFENSE TO THAT STATEMENT. How DARE you? You hypocritical conceited retard. I’ll put my morality up against yours anyday.

            “We cannot agree as long as you believe that sin doesn’t exist.”

            Oh, I believe that sin exists. It exists in places you least expect it. And I believe it has ruined YOUR life much more than mine.

  • 1941641

    Well, Harrisburg Church votes to send its Boy Scout Troop 85 packing and in doing so succumbs to extreme Homophobia. To me its proof positive that those big-time Harrisburg Church donors have succeeded in building a very fine church building complete with a tract of prime real estate in the City Of Tupelo for its members to worship in. But, even so, the church has failed in its commitment to advocate the loving message of Jesus Christ.

    The Bible says God created man in His own image… What happened to that? Is Harrisburg Church busy creating its own God in the 21st Century?

    So, this is Christianity today? Is this the same Christianity that gave the world the notorious, horrific historical Inquisitions? I think so, yes, I do.

    The Bible says many things, and it also says that Jesus Wept. It is open to many interpretations by many people, but I believe Jesus had a vision of a world that He did not approve of. It’s today’s world!

    • FrereJocques

      So many churches. So little Christianity.

  • FrereJocques

    I’ll bet that 250 is a rather small contingent of Harrisburg’s membership. And you can be sure that the rabidly anti-gay ones showed up to take part in that vote. And it looks like the church pastor is part of that crowd.

    Can’t help but wonder how many people who would have voted to KEEP the Scout troop were too intimidated to show up and express their feelings?

  • 1941641

    I’m assuming Harrisburg Church is gay free and consequently sin free. Is that not right? Because, either way, Rev. Sheffield and his congregation have a lot of intense, wide-open, public praying to catch up on. Maybe, with the help of a good, understanding Catholic Priest to hear an unprecedented number of Southern Baptist confessions, the church will endure its own self-inflicted intolerance problem.

    Probably, the most devout Christian president in our history walked out of the Extremist Southern Baptist Church he was a member of in favor of his more tolerant human nature. I’ve yet to read in any publication that God sent his wrath upon him for his actions.

  • 1941641

    Steve,
    I am reminded of your post to Frere.

    Where ever there is smoke, there is usually fire. And, where ever there is Homophobia there is usually a Homophobe. A Proud Homophobe!

  • Steve D

    Am I safe to assume that this narrow-minded decision will carry over to the hosting of the annual Merit Badge college? Not just Troop 85 but every young man in the Yocona Council could suffer because of this.

  • John John

    On My Honor is such a waste of time. They can’t compete with the vast camp real estate holdings and administrative muscle of BSA.

  • the_rocket

    The Boy Scouts are much better off without this kind of leadership.

  • LeftinMS

    In 1957 the Ole Miss basketball team walked off the court and forfeited the game rather than play an integrated Iona team.

    In1957 the Ole Miss football team canceled the long standing series against North Texas rather than to play an integrated North Texas Team.

    In 1958 Ark Gov chose to close down the Little Rock high schools for an entire year rather than be inclusive to all of God’s beloved children.

    In 1962 Ole Miss considered canceling the entire school year in order to exclude James Meredith. The only reason the board voted against it was because the school would have lost its academic accreditation. Ole Miss finally fell under the “political pressure”.

    In 2013 Harrisburg Baptist shut down the area’s largest BSA troop rather than be inclusive to all of God’s beloved children.

  • TupeloRob

    Just to add to this discussion someone who may be more in the middle:

    My son is a Scout (not in the Harrisburg Troop) so I was interested with the recent decision to allow gay children. But when my wife and I discussed it, I told her that I didn’t feel the change had any effect on whether he would remain in scouting. As a Christian, I thought it would be a wonderful opportunity for us to show Christ’s love in a genuine, accepting way.

    Many Christians and non-Christians do not truly understand a Biblical view on homosexuality. We are born sinful. There are some who are born with a tendency toward homosexual sin. the Bible is very clear that homosexual acts are sinful. While it may not be possible to change sexual orientation, many homosexuals come to Christ and seek help to change their lifestyle (not their orientation). The most recent leader of the now closed Exodus International would be an example.

    I was born a heteorsexual. Even though I am married, it is a temptation for me to lust towards other women who are not my wife. I I was born into that sinful nature and cannot change it and only through the power of Christ can I get daily freedom over those temptations. It is a very similar situation for the homosexual who gives their heart to Christ. They may struggle with temptation all their life but can overcome those temptations to sin by yielding them to Christ.

    I do not mean any of this as a political statement but simply to clarify what the Bible truly teaches about homosexuality. I agree with many of you in saying that the church falls well short in their ability to demonstrate love and grace to a lost world. It is sad that too many hear more what the church is against than what the church is really for.

    • Jon

      Sounds like a good solution to changing homosexuals’ “lifestyles” is to let them marry. Then they’ll be on a level playing field with the hetero dudes lusting after others.

      • TupeloRob

        I am not opposed to homosexual “unions” but I think it is a state’s issue, not a federal issue. “Marriage” however is a religious-based concept so I don’t think the government should be invading on religious grounds in forcing homosexual “marriage”.

        • Tammy Rainey

          “marriage” is not, in fact, a religious bssed institution despite the mountain of false claims from the right. Non-religious people, and those of other faith traditions, have been getting “married” since the dawn of humanity – and what constituted a “correct” marriage has varied widely and often been altered by the state.

    • FrereJocques

      Rob, your post is indeed an attempt to be understanding and accepting while clinging to your standards. But let me help you clarify your beliefs. A close study of the Bible texts IN THEIR ORIGINAL LANGUAGE reveals that they do not say what today’s Bible translations say. IOW the Bible has been misinterpreted. This is not just my opinion, this is the opinion of many noted Bible scholars in many Universities and other schools of thought, and not those with a pro-gay agenda. I have detailed in numerous other posts where the mistakes are, and how they came about. You can research these yourself online, if you will approach the subject with an open mind.

      Read what other scholars have said, and then see what the Bible TRULY teaches.
      I wish you well.

      • TupeloRob

        I am afraid this just isn’t true and wherever you read this certainly
        had to have a pro-gay agenda to espouse such a view. If you read the
        original Greek New Testament there is no way to interpret Romans 1:18-32
        as homosexual acts. The same is true for verses in 1 Corinthians 6:9-11
        and 1 Timothy 1:8-10.

        For each “theologian” who gives a different interpretation for those versus than what is in our English Bible translations, I can give at least a hundred with an interpretation mirroring that in our English Bibles. There is really no other way to interpret these New Testament versus other than stating that homosexuality is SIN.

        I am not trying to “cling” to “my” own standards but those in God’s Word and it DOES TRULY and CLEARLY teach that homosexuality is SIN.

        I am sorry if that is offensive to you but, again, this is not a political statement above but only sharing the teachings of the Bible.

        • TupeloRob

          By the way, the Greek word most often translated as “homosexuality” in the New Testament is “arsenokoites”, which interpreted from the original Greek language literally means “a male engaging in same-gender sexual activity”.

          It would be a HUGE stretch to interpret it any differently than that.

          • FrereJocques

            This is perhaps where you prove the old adage that, “A LITTLE knowledge is a dangerous thing.” “Arsenokoites” can mean, “a male engaging in same-gender sexual activity”, but it does not supply the context of that activity.

            The word, frankly, has no direct translation to the English language, and it was used so seldom at the time that making a definitive translation is impossible. Many language scholars think that Paul himself coined the word, from two Jewish words; but in any case, Paul linked the use of the word to prostitutes and sexual perversions, and NOT homosexuality. In fact, there IS NO WORD for homosexuality in the Greek language. The interpretations given in Bible translations dating to the 1500’s are pure inventions by the scribes of the time. And modern translations have been derived from these older translations, so the error is continued and compounded.

            Here is a link to many Biblical texts and stories that have been misinterpreted over the millennia: http://epistle.us/hbarticles/clobber1.html

            If you close your mind to even the possibility of new knowledge, there is no hope of you ever learning new truth. “Study to show thyself approved to God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” 2Timothy 2:15

          • TupeloRob

            Seriously?

            You link an article to validate your argument from an obscure website called “The Epistle”, a self proclaimed “Web Magazine of Encouragement & Inspiration for Christian Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual & Transgender People.”

            Then you infer I have “little knowledge” because I do not agree with the LGBT websites that espouse your views? Not a good idea.

          • TupeloRob

            Lev 18:22 and 20:13 teach that a man cannot lie (sexual act) with another man as he lies with a woman. The origin of the word arsenokoites means homosexual activity. Lev 18:22 and 20:13 prove very clearly that arsenos koiten means homosexual sexual acts, because the Jews scribes AT THAT TIME translated words’ arsenos koiten to describe men who have sex with other men. The Apostle Paul didn’t make up the word arsenokoites, but it was already as the concept in the Old Testament, where it meant homosexual acts.

          • Bertholomew Stare

            What you fail to understand TupeloRob, is that most of us don’t care what the bible says about homosexuality or anything else for that matter. You keep using it as a source for your bigotry, but you have nothing else to source from. Why should I follow what some sheep herders and farmers believed 2000 years ago? They also thought the world was flat at the time.

            What if our hospitals followed only the medical books from 2000 years ago when you went to get a bypass done? I find it astounding that with all that science and physics has uncovered over the last few centuries, that religious books still have relevance at all with the amount of mistakes in them. Christianity is the greatest marketing campaign of all time.

          • TupeloRob

            Bertholomew Stare,

            I do not at all object to you not following the Bible if you do not believe in God or what the Bible says. The Bible is only pertinent for those who have responded to its Gospel message. For anyone else for whom the Gospel has not been revealed, the Bible says itself that Its words will be like foolishness to them.

            But your analogy regarding medical science is flawed. If medical science was true 2000 years ago it is still true today. Time does not change that.

            And finally, my previous posts were only addressing someone trying to, under false pretenses, suggest there was another more accurate way to interpret Scripture. I felt others may need to know that the vast majority of theologians reject this new interpretation advanced by the LGBT agenda.

          • FrereJocques

            “And finally, my previous posts were only addressing someone trying to,
            under false pretenses, suggest there was another more accurate way to
            interpret Scripture.”

            Nothing false about my “pretenses”, there are indeed newer accepted interpretations of what Paul said, whether you accept them or not. Just because you don’t accept them doesn’t lessen their impact or importance.

            One final thought: If Jesus thought that homosexuality was such a terrible sin, and He knew that this would become an issue in the last days (He HAD to know, right? After all, “I make known the end from the beginning, from ancient times, what is
            still to come.” Isaiah 46:10), why did he never speak to the subject? You can search the Gospels end to end, but Jesus never uttered ONE WORD about homosexuality.

            “I felt others may need to know that the vast majority of theologians reject this new interpretation advanced by the LGBT agenda.”

            There are several churches that now accept that gay people are also God’s children. Including the Presbyterian Church and the Lutherans. These are not just minor sects, they are mainstream religious organizations. So while you can say the MAJORITY of theologians reject gay people, certainly the VAST majority don’t. You are going to find that, more and more, you are isolated in your traditional beliefs.

            This WILL be my final post to you on this subject. You are not at all open to new ideas. Saying I have a closed mind is the kettle calling the pot black. I have tried to introduce you to new revelations regarding God’s Word. You have summarily rejected them. Even the Bible says, “…neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you.” Matt. 7:6.

            Good luck with your life.

          • TupeloRob

            The USA Presbyterian Church and the Lutheran sect you mentioned account for a very small percentage of evangelicals in the US. So my comment about “vast” majority still applies.

            By the way, I harbor no ill will at all against your views. I tried to reflect that in my initial post. I simply have studied the Bible extensively and defend its message with vigor.

          • FrereJocques

            The website itself isn’t the main focus; it’s the ARTICLE printed there. The author of the article covers a lot of issues regarding Bible translation, and is heavily footnoted; he didn’t come up with this on his own. He’s done a good amount of research himself.

            If all you want to hear is about how right you yourself are, then there is no point in presenting any contrary opinions for you to consider. I doubt you’d change your beliefs if God Himself appeared to you. You’d find some reason to disbelieve Him.

            Gay people started studying the Bible themselves because people like you used Bible texts to beat them over the head (the so-called “clobber texts”). They decided if they were going to be condemned, they were at least going to know why. What they found is that they were being falsely condemned, and they decided they are not going have any more of it. Even if you feel you can judge them by your own religious standards, that doesn’t give you the right to take away their civil liberties and keep them from living a normal life with the same privileges and freedoms as you have. They will not be forced back into the closet. You don’t want them in your church–fine. They wouldn’t want to be there anyway. You are free to believe as you want, but you cannot force others to believe as you do. That applies to me as well. So I think we’re through.

          • TupeloRob

            But the website IS important. It is disingenuous for you to try to suggest my mind is not “opened” and there is a “new truth” available but it is one only presented by those trying to advance a LGBT agenda. You cannot change what the Bible says no matter how many Gay theologians you get to try to come up with a different explanation for what the Bible clearly says.

            Your straw man argument just doesn’t work here. I have already said I support legalized unions and the equal rights that would be inherited as such. But don’t try to suggest the Bible says (or doesn’t say) something it absolutely says. YOU are the one with the closed mind!

          • FrereJocques

            “But the website IS important. It is disingenuous for you to try to
            suggest my mind is not “opened” and there is a “new truth” available but
            it is one only presented by those trying to advance a LGBT agenda”

            That is a disingenuous slur. Of course new truth is going to be presented by those who are supporting gay rights. You don’t really expect to find the Baptist church, the KKK, the Republican Party, or Tim Wildmon doing this, do you? And you mainly appear to be questioning the motives of those presenting these facts, and not contesting the facts themselves (other than to say you don’t believe them, which is just plain simple denial). And there ARE unbiased sources, such as University professors, who are saying these same things. I’ve read them, although I don’t have references handy.

            And they are not “try(ing) to come up with a different explanation for what the Bible clearly says.” People like you have your own interpretation of what the Bible “clearly says”. Gay people are discovering that it isn’t all that clear, and in fact, because of misinterpretations and human conspiracy, it says something totally different. You are basing your interpretation on what you have been brought up to believe your whole life. You were taught that homosexuality is wrong, is a sin, and gay people are condemned to Hell. And you’ve accepted that unquestionably. Remember, the Bible has been used to condone slavery, to keep women as sexual slaves, and segregation even into modern times. Did it never occur to you, or even BOTHER you, that your “old-time religion” has been used for these purposes? Knowing these facts, how can you argue that the Bible, or at least man’s interpretation, is infallible? You’re going to have to swallow a lot of past sins to maintain your absolute assurance that the Bible condemns gay people.

          • TupeloRob

            Ha! I thought you said you we were “through”?

            Listen, I am not going to argue any more because your mind is obviously closed. But since this is a public forum and you and one other poster were trying to suggest that there was new knowledge of a different interpretation of what the Bible says about homosexuality, I felt I needed to address the FACT that only the LGBT movement was trying to advance this interpretation and both conservative and liberal theologians among numerous denominational backgrounds agree with the traditional interpretation.

            Since I became an adult I never accepted what I had been “taught” without studying it out myself and you suggesting otherwise is only an attempt to attack me since you cannot attack my argument. I presented a small sampling of why this Biblical interpretation is wrong in other posts. I do not have time to explain to you how these words were interpreted when Jewish scribes wrote the Septuagint, proving the traditional definition of these words. Nor do I have time to point out in depth how many of the references to ancient literature these LGBT sites use were from apocrypha literature, that which has been rejected by religious scholars for hundreds of years.

            One thing you are right about is that one day we will both have to answer for our thinking. Matthew 25:31-46

          • Tammy Rainey

            “any source which disagrees with me is by definition a biased source which I may feel free to disregard” ~Rob

          • TupeloRob

            If you do a google search for the Greek word arsenokoites you will find pages of pro-LGBT websites trying to confuse people about what the BIble teaches about homosexuality. But each of these sites are by those slanted with a pro-gay agenda.

            The theological community is in total agreement that these ancient words refer to homosexual acts. There is vast agreement on that issue across numerous denominations and among both conservative and liberal theologians.

            This is simply an attempt to try to push an agenda that is obviously contrary to what the Bible teaches. That is why so many Christians become so easily angered at this agenda – because it very aggressively tries to misinterpret the Word to justify their own behavior.

          • 1941641

            Try Hebrew words, not Greek.

          • TupeloRob

            The New Testament was written in Greek Einstein. The Old testament was written in Hebrew.

        • Tammy Rainey

          homosexual acts? Yes, in many cases that’s true – the argument is “homosexual acts in a particular context” as opposed to “homosexual acts in general”

          the so called “pro-gay” interpretation is that the former is the case, rather than the latter.

      • Tammy Rainey

        I was once a licensed Baptist minister – in fact technically i
        still am – and I spent over 20 years not only believing but preaching
        and teaching just what rob believes – because I trusted the authority
        figures who told me it was so, to my shame. My mind was NOT open at
        all and looking back at the things I posted in various places, and
        the words I preached from pulpit and podium in those days, I was much
        more harsh and unloving in my position than Rob is.

        It was the circumstances of my own life, as well as the
        progression of scientific research, which at length forced me to open
        my mind to a new possibility. I was faced with two alternatives One,
        that the god of the universe demanded my repentance and obedience in
        a matter in which I was tempted, but despite the promises in his
        word, utterly failed to supply help and healing when that repentance
        was repeatedly in evidence; OR men had lied to me (unintentionally)
        about what god expected. I was obliged to seek out the answers
        because of this dilemma and I found that the latter was the case,
        rather than the former. There’s some faith involved here, of course,
        because I am choosing by faith to believe that god is NOT, in fact,
        the sort of god who would demand that a person deny their very
        natural born essence and be miserable every single day of their lives
        just to follow some arbitrary rule.

        If he is, in fact, that sort of god – then he’s not the one I
        ever gave my heart to in the first place.

    • Tammy Rainey

      I appreciate and commend the show of grace, but let me offer a
      couple of contrary thoughts (big surprise, right?):

      1. comparing the heterosexual proclivity to lust/promiscuity to
      homosexual orientation is a very flawed analogy for two reasons –
      First, hoomosexuals also have exactly the same temptation to
      lust/promiscuity so that temptation is not an alternate one to
      orientation but a parallel one; second, that temptation still leaves
      you open an opportunity for a mentally and spiritually satisfying
      emotional and physical relationship – the one with your wife,
      whereas the line of reasoning would leave the homosexual with NO
      “god-approved” outlet for companionship and romantic love. Thus,
      the analogy does not hold since there is not approved outlet for the
      one desire, while there is for the other. The common canard “the
      gay man can always marry a woman” is inapplicable because it
      requires him to seek companionship in a place he has no desire to
      go. It would be like saying to you that you can always seek romance
      and companionship in a man – something you would obviously have
      zero interest in doing, whatever your religious beliefs would be on
      the subject.

      2. The thesis that people can and do turn to God for “healing”
      of their sexual orientation is specious and even the founders of EI
      now acknowledge that the most they had ever done was give tools to
      contain the desire, but never to eliminate it. One may argue as they
      wish that the homosexual is obliged to restrain their feelings in
      obedience to God, but evidence and experience clearly indicate that
      it is not tenable to claim that one may be “cured” of the
      desire. It simply doesn’t happen. I’m not saying this is your claim
      here, but many christians make that claim. I’ll leave for another
      time the question of whether or not one should be obliged to forsake
      romantic companionship altogether in order to serve a God of love
      (it seems contradictory). I speak from some experience here. I’m not
      homosexual, but I have faced the question of whether or not my
      condition, present from birth, was one which enough faith and
      repentance would bring a “cure” to – and I spent decades of my
      life perusing that cure and believing faithfully that it would come.

      In essence, I believed exactly what you believed and, to my shame,
      showed considerably less grace about it. But I believe a false
      doctrine, i’d put my faith in the traditions of men which had been
      disguised as god’s will. And more than one have suffered for my
      ignorance. It is for that reason that I feel obliged to lovingly
      confront the church and say “Have you really THOUGHT about what you
      say you believe? Or are you simply parroting what human authorities
      have told you to believe?

  • BadTeethAlan

    Will the congregation stop providing help to homeless folk (like I assume they do) if they are openly gay? Will they stop shopping at businesses or eating at restaurants that hire openly gay employees? Will they watch TV shows and movies with only straight casts and production teams? If they are this serious about being associated with “homosexual endorsing” groups as to hurt young children in need of structure and training than they shouldn’t have a problem carrying out their prejudice all the way.

    • OLEREB

      If the business supports a gay agenda, then YES stop the support of endorsing “homosexual agendas.” Sorry to say but we as a nation are pushing that Tom loves TOM and MARY loves MARY is the norm, well I am sorry but it is not the “NORM” KUDOS to Harrisburg church!

      • 1941641

        Just a reminder: You forgot to mention David Loved Jonathan and Jonathan Loved David. How did you forget your famous Biblical Story?

  • 1941641

    Here is a link I found to be real informative on the question of homosexuality in Leviticus.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/rabbi-michael-rothbaum/the-problem-of-homophobia-in-leviticus_b_3563972.html

    Read it.

    • TupeloRob

      This is a very poor attempt to justify homosexual acts by a known liberal news site.

      There are several additional Biblical references to homosexuality this article fails to mention which only further demonstrates their liberal bias.

      • 1941641

        Are you calling this Jewish Rabbi a fraud?

        • TupeloRob

          I never said he was a “fraud” but that he was
          misinterpreting these Scriptures on homosexuality while ignoring others in the New Testament (like in Romans) that clearly distinguish homosexual acts as sinful.

          Surely you know he is liberally biased! He is the rabbi educator at “Beit Simchat Torah”, a California-based synagogue for LBGT
          couples.

          • 1941641

            It certainly stands to reason then that Rev. Sheffield is a Conservative Preacher which would mean he is biased against Gay people. LOL!!!

          • TupeloRob

            Rev Sheffield is pastor of a local church and that church membership is entitled to its decision regarding hosting the Boy Scouts in their church facilities.

            But you were linking an article by a rabbi at a LGBT synagogue as “real informative”. I just pointed out his bias and why he interpreted the Scripture in a way that the vast majority of theologians do not.

          • 1941641

            The vast majority of intolerant theologians are still actually living in the Dark Ages.But that is steadily changing as I’m sure you noticed.

          • TupeloRob

            That is one way to describe people who you don’t want to agree with, even if they may be correct. Then again, your Biblical knowledge is so vast you thought the New Testament was written in Hebrew.

          • 1941641

            Did I mention the New Testament? Is Leviticus in the New Testament?

          • TupeloRob

            yes you did.

            Earlier when I referenced the Greek word “arsenokoites” in the New Testament you tried to correct me saying, “try Hebrew words, not Greek”.

            So, yes I believe you did think the NT was written in Hebrew. Try as you might to correct your mistake it is now a part of the world wide web! :-)

          • Tammy Rainey

            I believe you err here. The citation from Huffpost referenced
            Leviticus (as might be expected from a Rabbi) – thus, Hebrew. If
            you then cite a Greek word from the New Testament, then the comment
            “try Hebrew” was not a claim that the NT was written in Hebrew
            but an expectation that you would stay “on topic” in the
            discussion of the OT. At least possibly. Gloating is unbecoming of
            one who professes to argue the Christian view.

          • TupeloRob

            1941641 directly responded to a post where I was referencing Biblical verses in the New Testament so no I was not in error.

            By the way, Christians don;t claim to be “perfect”. Only forgiven. :-)

          • Tammy Rainey

            There was a time when the vast majority
            of theologians were convinced that the sun revolved around the Earth.
            People got killed for saying otherwise.

            In fact, there was a time when the vast
            majority of theologians agreed that killing people who disagreed with
            their doctrinal views was service to God.

            And dozens of other examples may be
            given. Church history is littered with accounts which begin with “the
            vast majority of theologians agree that…” and end with “it
            turns out those theologians were exactly wrong.”

            It’s sad and shameful that the church
            insists on repeating the same pattern over and over and over again.
            Harrisburg stands in the proud tradition of those ministers of 60
            years ago who insisted that the mingling of blacks and whites in any
            way was a sin before God; and those of 160 years ago who insisted
            that the bible condoned the ownership of human beings; and those of a
            hundred years before that who described the allowable extent to which
            a man might beat his wife; and those of a hundred years before that
            who lit the fires which burned witches and other heritics at the
            stake. Shall I go on?

            How long, O Lord, until your church (if
            indeed it be YOUR church) realizes it’s error?

          • TupeloRob

            Your argument is plagued with straw man fallacy. I can;t even attempt to discuss it is so flawed.

          • Tammy Rainey

            nothing says “ducking” like dismissing the opposing
            argument without discussion. I’ll make it simple. please cite for me
            ANY evidence that the church has a spotless record of correctly
            interpreting Scripture. IF this cannot be done, and IF it can be
            demonstrated that Christians of pure intent and sound scholarship do
            in fact disagree on crucial doctrines, then please explain HOW it can
            be argued that on THIS point there is NO possibility that an
            alternate understanding is in fact valid?

            And if one IS valid, then why do
            churches not “agree to disagree” in the same manner that they
            agree to disagree on, for instance, Baptism?

          • TupeloRob

            Tammy,

            Your argument is seriously flawed. Do scientists agree in how the world was created? Do they all agree regarding the elements that make up H20?

            What you are saying is that they can’t be right about H20 because they don’t agree about other aspects of science. That is simply ridiculous.

          • Tammy Rainey

            The analogy between scientific observation and textual criticism
            is not valid. By definition, the latter is an ever evolving art.
            Surely you can agree that what “the vast majority of scholars”
            considered an accurate interpretation of Scripture has changed
            hundreds of times over the course of church history? That being the
            case, how can one argue that the current understanding of ANY
            Scripture is definitive and there is no possibility that an alternate
            understanding is valid?

            Also, you have yet to address – as far as I know – the central
            question: do you believe in a God that left room for disagreement
            about salvation, but no room for disagreement about sex/

          • TupeloRob

            I disagree. I think textual criticism can is as much a science-based venture as any other science.

            And as far as your analogy on salvation – I think evangelical churches are in agreement regarding salvation – it is through Christ alone and by faith alone. There is disagreement regarding some of the ordinances of the church such as baptism but surely you don’t think scholars must agree on every Biblical truth 100% of the time or they must be wrong on every other thing??? That would make NO sense.

          • Tammy Rainey

            1. Evangelical churches are not all the churches which exist.

            2. The Church of Christ holds water baptism by immersion to
            be essential to salvation. Some Pentecostal sects hold that
            demonstrations of “Gifts of the Spirit” are necessary
            components. To name just two.

            3. Evangelicals disagree amongst themselves, as well as with
            non-evangelicals in some cases, regarding the matter of whether or
            not one can lose their salvation. This is a key aspect of the
            doctrine.

            Beyond that, I do not argue that they MUST be wrong about
            homosexuality – merely that they MIGHT be wrong, yet they act as if
            they cannot POSSIBLY be wrong – which they do not do concerning any
            other doctrine. Do not misunderstand my argument here. I argue, in
            this discussion, not that the church IS wrong, but that it is
            POSSIBLE that they are and that being the case, they should
            demonstrate more tolerance for opposing views. As they do on every
            other point of doctrinal disagreement.

          • TupeloRob

            The Scriptures on homosexual acts in the Bible are much clearer than the numerous texts regarding salvation and church ordinances (such as baptism) or the gifts of the spirit (such as tongues) where there is more room open for interpretation.

            But do not get me wrong. I inferred in other posts that I do not agree with the way many churches treat homosexuality from a doctrinal standpoint nor a practice standpoint. I made it pretty clear in another post that I would not pull my son out of the Scouts.

            This whole debate started by that post because someone else posted a link to a LGBT sight with the minority LGBT view on those verses. However, they tried to phrase it as new revelations had been discovered by theologians and I just could not let that go by.

          • Tammy Rainey

            “The Scriptures on homosexual acts in the Bible are much clearer than the numerous texts regarding salvation”

            I move the previous question: the god of the Bible is more concerned about the proper use of the penis than he is about the means of reconciliation to his grace?

            I just don’t believe that reflects well on god or the church

          • TupeloRob

            You are once again stretching my words to try and detract from the original argument. I won’t go there. I never said what you typed above.

          • Tammy Rainey

            it’s the direct logical implication of your first sentence which i quoted.

          • TupeloRob

            Again, this is just a straw man fallacy. Please refer yourself to the website you posted earlier.

            You are trying to make a comparison with the important doctrines of salvation, regeneration, conversion, etc. which essentially the entire Bible is based with a few Scriptures that discuss homosexual acts as sin.

            There is no disagreement on those because they are clear. The fact that there is some disagreement in different denominations regarding the process of salvation, regeneration, conversion, and sanctification does not mean anything in relation to your arguing.

            The entire Bible depicts the Gospel message of God’s holiness, a history of Man’s failed attempts to be holy, God sending Christ as a way to reconcile this problem, and providing an opportunity for man to respond to Christ.

      • Tammy Rainey

        I’m going to provide you with a link to
        a discussion which covers every biblical reference commonly cited to
        condemn homosexuality. It’s well worth an hour of your time to at
        least familiarize yourself with the counter arguments, if for no
        other reason than to be well informed. Let me be clear, these verses
        taken together, and to the exclusion of the rest of Scripture, CAN be
        interpreted so as to condemn homosexual activity in general.
        Personally, I think that would be inconsistent with the nature of God
        as described elsewhere in the bible but in isolation, you can indeed
        make the case.

        However, as the speaker demonstrates,
        one can also make an exegetically sound case from those same passages
        that homosexual acts are only forbidden in certain contexts, just as
        heterosexual acts are forbidden in certain contexts. So that reveals
        the real question facing the church.

        Christians disagree among themselves on
        every major doctrine in the Bible. One need only compare the
        doctrines held by Baptists, Catholics, Pentecostals, Methodists, and
        the Church of Christ (to name just a few) concerning the means and
        method with which one is reconciled to God – surely the most
        important message of all to be found in Scripture. None of them are
        attempting to coerce via legislation or cultural bullying any of the
        others to give up the opposing view and align with their own – they
        all respectfully disagree amongst themselves, even when speaking of a
        subject which has, according to their own position, the most
        significant of eternal consequences.

        BUT many of those SAME people allege
        that there is no possible alternate understanding of the passages
        which reference homosexuality. Bert Harper specifically said on AFR
        “there IS NO ‘OTHER SIDE’ on this issue” – how is that possible
        church? How is it possible that the infallible god of the universe,
        who – according to YOU – superintended his word such that it
        communicated his truth to his people…how is it possible that that
        god managed to be so unclear that men could come up with a dozen
        contradictory doctrines of SALVATION but the same god was so VERY
        clear about HOW TO HAVE SEX that no possible alternative
        understanding is possible? Seriously?

        I’m NOT trying to change your mind
        about the doctrine – study and pray and seek the face of god for
        answers, not me. BUT I AM arguing that to claim that this is the ONE
        thing in all of Creation that god left no doubt about is, frankly,
        outright insane. It’s time the church faced up to it’s obsession with
        other’s people’s sexual behavior and repent.

        Here’s the link:

        http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=matthew+vines+bible+and+homosexuality&oq=Matthew+vines&gs_l=youtube.1.3.0l6j0i5.102.2056.0.8327.10.9.0.0.0.0.489.2464.3j1j1j0j4.9.0…0.0…1ac.1.11.youtube.rKA2ZKnbzXY

        • TupeloRob

          Tammy,

          Thanks for the tone of your post. However, I am already familiar with Matthew Vines and his status as a LGBT advocate. Once again, it is not surprising that many of these references are known LGBT advocates trying to advance a specific agenda.

          I disagree with Matthew Vines’ interpretations as do most Biblical scholars. This is just something we will have to agree to disagree on.

          • Tammy Rainey

            being an advocate does not, by itself, undermine credibility. If it
            did, then everyone employed by AFR or indeed ANY church would be
            rendered without credibility since all of them advocate a particular
            view. It is necessary to address the arguments presented, in a
            reasonable discussion, rather than to dismiss the person simply on the
            basis of advocating for their views.

            Can
            we agree that those advocates who’s position you agree with are
            equally credible, or lacking in credibility, in that they are also
            advocates? Can we not then agree that the arguments stand or fall on
            their own merit, not based on the position of those who advance those
            arguments?

            That seems to me to be a reasonable position.

            Furthermore, is it not self evident that the “majority of scholars” have OFTEN been wrong, in the course of church history, regarding some controversial question? How then can we logically default to the majority view as an end to discussion? That sort of appeal is considered a logical fallacy for good reasons.

          • TupeloRob

            I would totally agree with what you are saying if those at AFA/AFR were the ONLY ones espousing such views. But they are not. Far from it. The vast majority of theologians who really have no vested energy into this debate, are not filling the airways with it nor posting things on the web, all agree with the way it has been interpreted in modern translations.

            It is NOT a logical fallacy to say the majority of experts today agree that Matthew Vine’s interpretation of Scripture is seriously flawed. It IS a logical fallacy to bring up views from history hundreds of years prior on a subject that is not even Biblically related as somehow related to a view on Scripture that has stood the test of time.

          • Tammy Rainey

            “It is NOT a logical fallacy to say the majority of experts today agree
            that Matthew Vine’s interpretation of Scripture is seriously flawed”

            Appeal to authority

            http://www.theskepticsguide.org/resources/logicalfallacies.aspx

          • TupeloRob

            Your link says this:

            “a consensus of scientific opinion does carry some legitimate authority. But it is still possible for highly educated individuals, and a broad consensus to be wrong – speaking from authority does not make a claim true.”

            I am saying that I side with the consensus of opinion among scholars which, even according to your skeptic website carries “some legitimate authority”. You can choose to side with the extreme minority of opinion. That is completely your right to do so in this country.

            Best of luck to you.

          • Tammy Rainey

            indeed. but i have ask questions which remain unanswered:

            1. is it legitimate for the church to attempt to force even the majority view upon the dissenters?

            2. is it logical to believe in a god who, alone among ALL doctrines, chose how one has sex to be the one doctrine about which he left no room for dissent?

            Why do these go unanswered?

          • TupeloRob

            I will be happy to answer.

            1. The church is not “forcing” their views on anyone. It is an American right for religious people to speak their convictions on what the Bible teaches but it is also your American right to either accept or reject that teaching. Since Harrisburg is a private institution, they have every right to allow or disallow the Scouts at their facility as much as Planned Parenthood can disallow a Pro-life advocate from counseling clients in their clinic.

            2. I think there are numerous doctrines which there is great agreement. This issue is just the one that has your interest.

          • FrereJocques

            Been enjoying your posts. You’ve been attempting to convince him with reason and logic, just like I did. Hate to say it, but you are wasting your time. He doesn’t respond to logic and reason, he only responds to “Thus saith the Lord”. The fact that he can’t answer your logical questions doesn’t phase him at all. He is willing and capable of burying the inconsistencies in his mind without mental consequences. He just simply refuses to see them. He will go to his grave believing the way he does.

            I would offer you some advice, in the form of a cliche: Don’t try to teach a pig to sing. It wastes your time, and it annoys the pig.

          • Tammy Rainey

            “It IS a logical fallacy to bring up views from history hundreds of years
            prior on a subject that is not even Biblically related as somehow
            related to a view on Scripture that has stood the test of time.”

            A demonstrated track record of error logically proves the potential for more error. To put a finer point on it, the error concerning race relations is not even 100 years in our past and, indeed, is still being committed by some professing Christians

          • TupeloRob

            So are you saying that ONLY Christians believed in slavery and practiced racial prejudice in the South? Surely not because that would be a very extreme view. This was very much a culturally based view and many of the leaders in changing these views were, in fact, Christians.

          • Tammy Rainey

            of course not. That’s entirely irrelevant. However, you are
            EXACTLY right that it was a culturally based tradition which SOME in
            the church clothed in the robes of religion (falsely) – I submit to
            you that the distaste for homosexuality is POSSIBLY an example of the
            EXACT sort of mistake. A cultural tradition (that homosexuality is
            “perverted” and “wrong”) dressed up in the robes of religion
            to falsely invoke the authority of God to support a human tradition.
            Let us be mindful of what Christ said to the Pharisees abut elevating
            human tradition over god’s will.

          • Tom

            Let us be mindful of what Christ said about the gender mix of Christian marriages.

          • Tammy Rainey

            Christ spoke a general truth to a general audience. It’s pretty much exactly the same thing as when a Christian pastor speaks of the purpose of marriage as being an environment in which to raise children…without saying out loud what everyone knows to be true: that not every marriage produces children or even CAN produce children (as in the wedding of two elderly folks for instance). it is not necessary for the speaker to address the occasional exception when speaking of a general principle.

            Likewise, given that homosexuals are only 2-3% of the population, and in disapproving cultures (as first century Judaism surely would have been) even those would almost always keep their desires very secret and even if they didn’t there was no legal mechanism for them to be married or to advocate for that privilege… it would be completely irrational for Jesus to say something like “A marriage is between a man and a woman, except for that one in a thousand case in which two dudes marry but you know what i mean, a marriage is MOSTLY a man and a woman ….”

            Good speakers just don’t do that.

            Moreover, one ought be careful about drawing doctrine where no doctrinal principle is being put forth. Jesus answered a question about EXCEPTIONS to marriage (that is, divorce) by pointing out God’s perfect plan was different from what ended up happening and allowed that god’s servant had permitted divorce “because of the hardness of your hearts” but he didn’t say “Yall need to stop getting divorced” – rather, he was rightly pointing out that humanity had failed to measure up to perfection – no surprise.

            So, for the church to argue “God’s plan for marriage was one man and one woman” is true, but his plan was also that th9ose two not get divorced…and the population of God’s church falls seriously short of THAT mark. It seems to me that as long as the church can’t get it right, they are in a poor position to legislate the standard upon others.

            not that this thread was ever about marriage anyway…

          • Tom

            Yes, this thread was not about marriage. But you said we should be mindful of what Christ said. And the closest records we have of Christ’s thoughts on appropriate gender mixes for romantic relationships, is illustrated by what he said about marriage.

            It’s true that when people state a principle, they often dont list the exceptions to that principle. So a Christian pastor might say that marriage is the best environment in which to raise children, but might not state the obvious exceptions of a marriage between violent or drug addicted spouses. But your analogy doesnt fit this instance (Matthew 19), because Jesus doesnt merely state a general principle. He also defines what he means by Christian marriage. He refers back to the creation and quotes it to say that a man and a woman join together in marriage to become one flesh. When we look back at that creation story (Genesis 2), we see that it says that the “one flesh” notion is a mirror image process to the creation of woman from man. Such a process does not fit when the spouses are the same gender.

            I disagree that it would be completely irrational for Jesus to have said something like “A marriage is between a man and a woman, except for that one in a thousand case in which two dudes marry but you know what i mean, a marriage is MOSTLY a man and a woman ….”. As you have shared, in the society in which he lived, marriage was exclusively heterosexual. If Jesus wanted his followers to know that he supported non-heterosexal marriage, then he needed to state that accordingly, as he did with other changes that he advocated to society at the time. Good speakers, are clear about what they are trying to communicate. But he didnt state that Christian marriage can be non-heterosexual. In fact he advanced a doctrinal position that affirmed the status quo of the time; that Christian marriage is by definition a heterosexual union, *and* that divorce was generally disallowed.

            I agree that the church are in a poor position to legislate the standard upon non-Christians though. Jesus never told his followers to enforce his standards through civil legislation.

  • Bertholomew Stare

    Southern Baptists are on the wrong side of history (as usual). I seriously can’t wait for these older bigots to bite the dust. First they refused to give women equal rights, then they denied the blacks equal rights, now its the gays. They are running out of groups to hate on at this point. Harrisburg is basically just a bunch of old white guys agreeing with themselves inside their brick and mortar echo chambers of rhythmic anti-human decency rhetoric.

    • Bertholomew Stare

      The saddest part of all of this is that the mouthpiece for the Southern Baptist Churches is the American Family Association, which is listed on the Southern poverty Law Website as a habitual offender, thus classifying them as an actual hate group. They are the only Christian affiliated group that has the distinction of being labeled a hate group. Congrats, Don Wildmon, you jurassically old bigot. link:

      http://www.splcenter.org/get-informed/intelligence-files/groups/american-family-association

      • 1941641

        Don has earned the distinction of being the Creator of the Dark Side of Tupelo.

      • Tammy Rainey

        the irony being that Wildmon himself is, in fact, a Methodist minister. It’s fascinating that the Baptists and Methodists can and do disagree on some of the core doctrines of the christian religion – and respect each others views despite that disagreement – but so many are convinced that the Bible is crystal clear on homosexuality. The logical implication is that God was willing to be unclear about eternal salvation but unwilling to be unclear about how one has sex.

        What kind of God is THAT?

      • Bertholomew Stare

        A little research goes a long way. Dr. Forrest Sheffield is on the Board of Directors at American Family Association. Weirdly, Randy Sharp (director of special projects for AFA), is the scoutmaster for troop 85. It appears that Randy Sharp has become the “Judas” is this whole scenario. He works for the most vocal group of anti-Boy Scout lobbyists, yet he is also a scoutmaster for the largest troop in the area. If I was troop 85, I would be ashamed of this two-faced man.

        • VocalCoach

          Want to do a little actual research there before you go slandering
          people, Bertholomew? Randy Sharp is NOT the scoutmaster of Troop 85.
          Greg O’Quinn is the scoutmaster. And Dr. Sheffield is NOT on the Board for the AFA.

    • marrwood

      you sir or ma’am, are and idiot!

      • FrereJocques

        “you sir or ma’am, are and idiot!”

        Er…um….hmmm…..speaking of idiots……Wish thoze whu call udders idiots wood lern to rede and spel gud.

      • Bertholomew Stare

        quote from marrwood- “are and idiot”….
        i honestly can’t believe that someone this stupid has the mental capacity for their brain to perform involuntary life support functions like breathing and blinking.

      • Bertholomew Stare

        also, Brad/Donna…

        if you are going to be a bigot, you should probably attach your real name, and location to it. a quick IP search confirms you are part of the Saltillo bigot patrol. If you are offended by marrwood, please send complaints to his email at woodcock_b@bellsouth.net

        BOOM!

        • Bertholomew Stare

          Furthermore, since you work for the government, you do realize that any citizen can file a freedom of information request to see any and all of your emails sent on that computer and email account.

          I think its time to expose the cockroach behavior that is so pervasive in you bigots, especially in high ranking positions of government. I am filling out the paperwork (FOIA) for your emails right now.

          Also, Mr. Bigot, just because you delete them does not mean that they are not stored at the national database for FOIA requests in Langley, Virginia. You started this by calling me an idiot, and now I am going to finish this.

          • marrwood

            What is FOIA?

            Enacted on July 4, 1966, and taking effect one year later, the
            Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) provides that any person has a right,
            enforceable in court, to obtain access to federal agency records, except
            to the extent that such records (or portions of them) are protected
            from public disclosure by one of nine exemptions or by one of three
            special law enforcement record exclusions.

            What about requirements for obtaining records on someone else?

            If you request records relating to another person, and
            disclosure of the records could invade that person’s privacy, they
            ordinarily will not be disclosed to you.

            What are exemptions?

            Not all records can be released under the FOIA. Congress
            established certain categories of information that are not required to
            be released in response to a FOIA request because release would be
            harmful to governmental or private interests. These categories are
            called “exemptions” from disclosures…

            Exemption 6: Information that, if disclosed, would invade another individual’s personal privacy.

            ***Comments have been generated from my personal computer, not a government computer. Comments are personal opinion, not government policy.

      • Bertholomew Stare

        I see that you got my comment deleted about your true identity, Mr. Alderman of Saltillo aka Brad Woodcock. I won’t repost your email address out of board rules, but like I said if you are going to be a bigot, then i am going to post your name, Brad Woodcock.

        Saltillo should be ashamed to have voted you in.

  • Americasgone

    I know how to take care of the faggot problem.

    • countrydawg

      A real shame your parents were brother and sister. It’s obvious your fam never solved that problem.

    • Bertholomew Stare

      Suicide?

  • wommuck

    Thanks for continuing to reaffirm my decision to never set foot in a church ever.

  • LeftinMS

    Regardless of what the Bible says or does not say about homosexuality, this decision does not reflect the love and grace of the Gospel. This decision was made by self-righteous Christians who place a few scriptures above the living example of Jesus. Where is the love, grace, and humility in
    this decision? It is just another public statement to all teens that are struggling with their sexuality that they are lesser-than, and not welcomed in the HBC community.

    • Tom

      You seem to perceive a distinction between scriptures and the example of Jesus? Jesus portrayed Christian relationships as hetero (Matthew 19). I think the message given to gay scouts in HBC is the long held one; that you are welcome so long as you pretend you are straight.

  • Mike Morgan

    Scouts accept boys 11 to 17. You seriously think we ought to ask 11 year old boys whether or not they like girls in order to be admitted into the building? BOTH sides have screwed this one up, what happened to kids learning to tie knots and build fires? Church, you just lost a great chance to reach these boys in the community and influence them during their formative years, all because you have a dispute with a bunch of adults 500 miles away.

    • TWBDB

      Mike, I couldn’t agree with you more. The dispute from 500 miles (TX) or CA (2000) originated when teenagers, already in Scouting many years, were cast out when they ‘came out openly’. One could argue they were following the first virtue of Scouting, that of Honesty. I’m not sure when churches began to sponsor Scouting but I would imagine their intent wasn’t to purge the ranks of sinners but maybe to have an avenue to introduce those young men and women to Christianity.

  • Tammy Rainey

    one can only wonder how many homosexual adults sit in their pews every Sunday morning. They are foolish if they think there are none and, indeed, likely they are known to their neighbors. Do these people contaminate straight people with their gayness? Are they recruiting? Or has the church taken the initiative to disinvite those who come seeking Christ?

    Because that’s exactly what they have done here. Laying aside the erroneous (IMO) conclusion that homosexual orientation is sin (and do NOT let them weasel and say they are protesting homosexual ACTS not orientation – because there are NO sexual ACTS in the boy Scout meetings and activities) the reality is that they had the opportunity to bring potentially lost ytoung boys and men into a church setting, sometimes the ONLY time these boys would get that chance, and expose them to the whole slate of Christian values and the potential to come to faith in Christ through their mentoring BUT because they can’t get past their OBSESSION with SEX above all other subjects, they decide to turn these young potential seekers away.

    PRAYED about it? Not bloody likely. The Christ who supped with whores and sinners didn’t tell you to bar the door of the church to young men and boys in need of a relationship with him. Ya’ll might have been tuned to the wrong station.

    • Tom

      Im not sure that they think there are no homosexual adults in the pews in their churches. The Bible seems to be fairly accurate in its depiction of the human condition, even today. Modern pews are probably warmed by prostitutes, homosexuals, alcoholics, thieves, and people who engage in all sorts of sins. BUT nobody is declaring their sins, so nobody knows about them, the boat is not rocked, and the general understanding that sin = bad, is maintained. The difference with the BSA change, is that it brings things into the open. Honesty is certainly a good thing, but it comes with new challenges. Homosexual orientation itself is not sin, but unfortunately it makes Christians nervous about the potential for sexual sin.

      • Tammy Rainey

        The error, in my view, is that many traditionalist christians insist that there can’t possibly be a valid alternate understanding of the relevant passages. It mystifies me that denominations with wholly opposing views on the matter of salvation get along just fine despite their disagreement on the central message of Scripture…yet let someone dissent concerning sexual behavior and holy-hell breaks loose.

        • Tom

          Denominations with wholly opposing views on the matter of salvation *dont* get along just fine despite their disagreement on the central message of Scripture. The friction is not always clearly apparent, but it’s there, and every now and again it’s marked with acrimony and accusations of who is and isnt really Christian. Hell breaks loose about sexual behaviour because Scripture presents it as a very important issue.

          • Tammy Rainey

            they make no effort to have their individual theology imposed by law on those with a different theology;

            They make no effort to exclude those with a different theology from their houses of worship;

            They – at least on the surface – show grace and civility towards those with whom they disagree;

            Moreover, the new Boy Scouts alternative group being proposed specifically says that young men and boys of ALL faith traditions will be welcome as members – which is to say they are willing to tolerate even those who specifically deny the lordship of Christ (such as a Muslim or Jewish child) BUT they can’t abide one who disagrees about sexual matters.

            Priorities are most SERIOUSLY out of order.

          • TWBDB

            Tammy – wonderful postings! I would bring up a point here – – a young gay man or woman may or may not disagree with the prevalent teachings of their particular church, HB included – but by the mere admission that they are oriented ‘differently’ they are excluded from the conversation. That’s left to the church to decide if that’s the way they choose to operate. Harrisburg is well within it’s rights to express their believe system and exclude whomever they want. I’d be very surprised if it made a hill of beans to Harrisburg leadership in the long run as it’s easy to dismiss those who’ve been marginalized.

      • TWBDB

        Tom, I agree. No one wishes to talk about the commonalities of sexual development which most certainly include homosexual behaviors regardless of one’s ultimate orientation; sexual sin occurs regardless of orientation. After rehashing and reviewing posts on multiple sites, I’m beginning to believe this decision by SBC and Harrisburg may ultimately be a very good thing for religion neutral based youth organizations such as Scouting.

  • Tammy Rainey

    am I the only one for whom this page auto-reloads so regularly that I don’t even have time to finish a thought? is there a way to stop this from happening?

    • FrereJocques

      No, you’re not the only one. I ran into this when the DJ debuted their new web page. It’s a real annoyance, because when the web page renews, it often wipes out your comment you’re typing. Whoever came up with this idea didn’t think things through very well, and I HOPE they didn’t do this with this “feature” in mind. Todd, Please take note–your new web page has flaws!

      I can find no fix for this in Internet Explorer. However, I have used Firefox for years now. Internet Explorer is the Neanderthal of web browsers–I truly despise it. Firefox has a feature that lets you stop the automatic reloading of a web page until you allow it. Suggest you download Firefox and use it, even if only for posting to the DJ. You might even come to like it!

      • Tammy Rainey

        I’m using firefox – how do i turn on this feature of which you speak?

        • FrereJocques

          Tools>Options>Advanced>General>Accessibility>Then check “Warn me when websites try to redirect or reload the page”. Close and re-open your browser. Enjoy!

          • Tammy Rainey

            thanks!

  • 1941641

    Randy Sharpe the troop 85 leader. That’s very very interesting. Thanks for that bit of info. Maybe Troop 85 will be a lot better off if it is disbanded. Maybe life is just beginning for these boys!

  • 1941641

    I’d say this site needs a new webmaster. Totally new experience. Page jumps up and down reloads leaves one’s comments in the waste can.

    • FrereJocques

      I’m beginning to wonder that myself. You can fix the problem by using Firefox to view the DJ webpage. There is a setting to keep the page from reloading. Look at my reply to Tammy Rainey below. I can’t find a similar setting in Internet Exploder.

  • SaltilloFarmer

    The Boy Scouts DID give in to pressure. I am very disappointed in this one time ” Top of Line Group ”
    Shame on You BSA !!!!! No Guts !!!!!
    BSA just lost a lot of support, $, and respect !!!
    Yes, Harrisburg Church did the right thing !!! They stood for what is right, even though it might not be popular with some ,

    • FrereJocques

      And they probably also GAINED a good deal of support, and probably money, too. Goes both ways.

      I’d say it took plenty of guts to do what they did. Right on, BSA!

  • W h hurst

    Someone asked me: What would Jesus do? If John 1:1-14 is true (believers know it is) : Wouldn’t He, probably, lovingly ask a question that paralleled the thoughts and motivation of your heart……then say “Isn’t it written………….?” Pointing anywhere from Genesis to Revelation…..not just the RED LETTERS. Are we willing to listen or lean on our own understanding (our fickle emotions and ideologies) ?

    • FrereJocques

      Your problem is that you are believing the lies told in the Bible about what He said. It is being shown more and more that the texts used to clobber gay people are misinterpretations and furthermore taken out of context. Even the story of Sodom and Gomorrah has been misused to condemn gay people. The proof of this is right in the Bible itself. All one has to do is STUDY!

      And for the record, Jesus never said ONE WORD (at least none that were documented) while here on Earth about homosexuals. That’s a significant omission about something that is supposed to be so significant.

      • W h hurst

        Friend, how can you talk about context if you believe the Bible lies? The Bible is spiritually discerned by those who believe it is God’s words (100 percent). Thus the rest of your argument has no foundation

      • W h hurst

        Friend, how can you talk about Bible context if you believe there are lies in it? It is Spiritually discerned by those who believe it is God’s words (100 percent). Thus the rest of your argument has no foundation

        • FrereJocques

          “It is Spiritually discerned by those who believe it is God’s words (100 percent).”

          You are pretty much saying that you believe what the Bible says is 100% correct, because the Bible says that it is 100% correct. The modern equivalent to that statement is that everything on the Internet is true. Why? Because someone on the Internet said it is true.

          Actually, it would have been more correct for me to say that the lies are being told by the modern interpreters of the Bible. They have given new meanings to some words that were not the original definitions of the words (for example, there was no Greek word for “homosexual”), and then they have changed the context of how those words were applied at that time. Very simply put, they have taken words and phrases originally intended to condemn gay sex for idol worship and pagan rituals, and twisted them to condemn ALL gay sex, even between loving, caring couples.

          • W h hurst

            All scripture is God breathed, Genesis through Revelation, therefore perfect.

          • FrereJocques

            As long as you believe that, there is no hope of you ever considering that there could be another opinion, or option, or possibility. This is the Classic definition of a CLOSED MIND.

            God did not write the Bible, MEN did. Reportedly under the direction of God. God didn’t stand there looking over their shoulder while they wrote. They wrote what they believed God wanted them to say, and. being men, if they weren’t sure, they improvised. I have no doubt some simply wrote what they themselves wanted to say. No, I can’t prove that, any more than you can prove they didn’t. It’s your opinion against mine. Blind faith against logic and human nature.

            The only thing that God wrote Himself was the Ten Commandments on two tables on stone. And those got smashed just a few days later.

        • Tammy Rainey

          even the most conservative of Biblical Scholars will tell you that when you say “The Bible is everything god intended, and nothing he didn’t” they are speaking of the ORIGINAL TEXTS – not the various translations.

          Jocques is pointing out that the error in question arises from poor or even malicious translation errors, not that the original text is necessarily in error.

          furthermore, even in the poorly translated versions, the text available to you undermines the claim that the S&G story is about homosexuals being punished.

    • Tammy Rainey

      Every Christian leans on their own understanding, because you have to consider whether you take the bible stone-cold literally (and pretty much nobody does) or, if not, how you will process and understand what you read. From a spiritual point of view, you have that understanding directed by the Holy Spirit…but it’s still imperfect men applying imperfect understanding, which is why there are so many contradictory denominations.

  • SaltilloFarmer

    It did not take any GUTS to do what the BSA did . HBC has the guts, and did what was right !!!!!!
    I just hope none of the Boy Scouts , all over America , get molested by some of the Queer Scout leaders , that will prey on young boys !!!!!! Makes me sick !!!!!!!!!
    Also, I was a Scout, and did make it to Eagle Scout. years ago.
    We did let Gat scout leaders in the scouts back then, they would have got their Ass Kicked !!!!!

    • TWBDB

      HBC’s decision took no courage: are you kidding!! Money – that’s the driving force – they were afraid their precious flow of money might be interrupted if they didn’t make this decision. It’s what was ‘expected’ of them. As it was with the BSA for so many years: they were ‘expected’ to cast out a Scout who came to the realization they were gay in their teenage years; as they ‘expected’ his Scouting friends, his family, his church to scorn him, shun him, and cast him out. Going along with the crowd doesn’t take courage: standing up for a friend in this difficult time regardless of what others ‘expect’ you to do takes courage.

      I hope no one gets molested Guest: by anyone. But I do know who is the most vulnerable; it’s that gay youth you all want to cast out.

    • Tammy Rainey

      Guest, consider this: if one reads over the news reports of, say, the last decade – what’s the ratio of boys being molested by scout masters, as opposed to boys (and girls for that matter) being molested by ministers?

      Strangly, those supposedly worried about the safety of kids aren’t calling for pulling them out of church, are they?

  • duece1991

    Congrats to Harrisburg… stand firm for your beliefs

  • TWBDB

    TupeloRob: I applaud your candor and the tone that you’ve taken in this debate. May I challenge you to consider that ‘coming out’ as a gay youth does not equate to ‘homosexual acts’ any more than a straight boy acknowledging that he’s attracted to girls equates to ‘heterosexual acts’. Indeed the orientation either way manifests itself in the same way internally.

    Now, I strongly believe that any church has the civil / legal right to express their views and make the choice to support, or not, any partnered organization or institution. Of note, only far left / far right fringe groups ever seriously discuss regulating these civil / legal rights either way: both are wrong. I did not know that Dr Sheffield sat on the board of the AFA reading this thread. AFA is right up there with Westboro Church in their rhetoric against gay people but, in my opinion, they take the top spot in misleading, slanting, and down right lying about current affairs, scientific research, and those they oppose politically. So which would you consider the worse sin? Being and admitting that one is gay or knowingly misleading a congregation for political and financial gain?

  • TWBDB

    How does one contribute to Troop 85 anonymously? Perhaps, it’s time to through financial support behind this group so these 25 young men can continue their activities regardless of the decision. Anyone willing to join me?

  • 1941641

    After scrolling up and down in the posts on this debate, I’m inclined to think there is too much God said this or that in it and not enough Love Your Fellow Man for he is just human like you! There will never be any real peace on earth until God is placed on a bookshelf along with all the mythology that Man gathered up to create Him!

    • TWBDB

      We agree on a lot of things but I would have to disagree with
      you on this one. Spirituality in a
      variety of forms, including Christianity, brings serenity to many, many people even
      peace between enemies when applied appropriately. To your point, and on this I most definitely
      agree, this same spirituality (religion) is way too often used to divide and
      support crimes against humanity. As in
      all things there’s a balance.

  • Fred

    I personally hate the “argument” that gays will destroy the institution of marriage . It’s really quite laughable.!!! If (( your )) god tells you that you cant marry a person of the same sex… that’s cool. What does it have to do with me? Or anybody else?

  • 1941641

    I want to share this link on gays:http://www.huffingtonpost.com/georgette-bennett-phd/sodom-and-gomorrah-revisited_b_2624684.html

    Georgette Bennett is a very knowledgeable woman. She speaks to her readers rationally.

    • TWBDB

      Thank you. One isn’t forced to believe the author’s thoughts on this matter, or other similar matters of Biblical interpretation, to appreciate her methodology. That’s unique these days. I’ve never felt any interpretation of Biblical Scripture was something we’re supposed to accept without question or consideration. It’s this very Word that gives it life.

  • Mike Ray

    These people ( and I use that term loosely ) should be ashamed of themselves. I was a boys out twenty years ago and I assure there were closeted gay scouts then.

  • Mike Ray

    These scouts are now different than they are now the only difference is because of politics these people feel the need to punish young men because of their own cleared minds. I feel sorry for them and hope they can sleep with their decision.

  • Mike Ray

    I hate auto complete I meant to say there is no difference between now and then and that these people are closed minded. I also wanted to say there is no gay agenda. They just want the same rights and privileges we abuse every day.