March 23, 2017

July 7, 2010

Noted Hoax Dupe: Jeffrey John Rejection “Bigoted, Prejudiced, Narrow-Minded”

It is a capitulation to forces within the Church of England and the Anglican Communion which represent a reactionary attitude to scripture and a negative attitude towards the glory, goodness and infinite variety and beauty of God’s creation.

It communicates an image of the church and Christianity to our nation in which we are perceived to be bigoted, prejudiced, narrow-minded and lacking in the primary Christian virtue of love.

It may be the final opportunity to nominate Jeffrey to a diocese and it may be the last opportunity the Archbishop of Canterbury has to appoint an openly gay person as a bishop, but that isn’t what matters tonight, because the Church of England still has closeted gay bishops and an increasing number of open and partnered LGBT priests.

Reform, Anglican Mainstream, Stand Firm, VirtueOnline and the other conservative forces in the church don’t seem to understand that God simply calls LGBT into faith and ministry and we find ways of inhabiting space in the church in which, despite the painful attacks and scandalous dishonesty, remains a place in which we can live into the Kingdom of God, creating by our presence and example, a church which is in the process of welcoming all, saints and sinners, redeemed and in need of redemption, all on the way to a holy transformation.

I can’t speak for Reform, Anglican Mainstream, and VirtueOnline, but as for Stand Firm, we certainly do understand that God simply calls LGBT into faith and ministry, and that they find ways of inhabiting space in the church. Now, we happen to have very different definitions of “painful attacks and scandalous dishonesty” - what they call “painful attacks” we usually call “spirited disagreement.” 

But what Colin Coward doesn’t seem to understand is that God calls all sinners into faith and ministry. The difference between LGBT’s and the rest of us, is that the rest of us don’t attempt to redefine our sins as holy things. We don’t try and create social justice campaigns based on our peculiar set of dysfunctions. Lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgenders do. In the context of sin as defined in Holy Scripture, Colin Coward and Jeffrey John and all the rest are no different in their sexual attraction than the next Anglican is in his gluttony, or the next one is in her adultery. Only to the extent that the church embraces an error can it make a distinction between them.

The only way the Anglican Communion can be a church that is “bigoted, prejudiced, narrow-minded and lacking in the primary Christian virtue of love,” is if by that it’s meant that we stand by what the Bible teaches about homosexual behavior. If the church has decided it can’t consecrate as bishop an openly gay, activist priest who advocates upending the Bible’s and the church’s teaching on sexual morality, that is not hate. It may not make John and the church’s gay activist wing happy, but it’s hardly bigotry, prejudice or narrow-mindedness.

Perhaps one day the gay wing of the church will grow up and realize this, but I won’t be holding my breath.

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I only found one factual statement in his whole blog post, the last one: There is nothing, not even betrayal by a member of the Crown Nominations Commission, that can ever separate us from the infinite love of God in Jesus Christ.

Aside from that, it was all unsubstantiated poppycock.

[1] Posted by Cindy T. in TX on 7-7-2010 at 10:30 PM · [top]

I completely agree, people of the orthodox perspective “understand that God simply calls LGBT into faith and ministry, and that they find ways of inhabiting space in the church.” However, the Church cannot validly bless what the Bible explicitly condemns. I might wish that were different, but it’s not.

[2] Posted by A Senior Priest on 7-8-2010 at 12:00 AM · [top]

Actually, I found another “truth” in the diatribe:

“... we find ways of inhabiting space in the church…”

Sounds insidious, doesn’t it?
Like Russian spies “finding ways” to “inhabit” places of power and leadership in the U.S..

Anyone else’s alarm bells going off?...

Live free or die…

[3] Posted by Amazed&Graced; on 7-8-2010 at 07:17 AM · [top]

The difference between LGBT’s and the rest of us, is that the rest of us don’t attempt to redefine our sins as holy things.

I think that sentence might work better if you add an extra word or two to make it clear that you are talking about LGBT activists and not all who may be struggling with some degree of sexual disfunction.  Those of us that know your work can tell based on the entire context of the article and your previous writings, but it would not be a bad idea to make it just a bit more clear.

[4] Posted by AndrewA on 7-8-2010 at 07:18 AM · [top]

“Church of England still has closeted gay bishops and an increasing number of open and partnered LGBT priests.” 
Well the problem seems to me to be the priesthood.  Once we moved beyond making a fuss regarding openly LGBT PRIESTS - of course Bishops are next and why not?  Openly sinful lives should not be tolerated/celebrated/embraced in the priesthood (or deaconet or laity).  And, really?, we have an increasing number of bi and transgendered priests?  Are these people saying that bi-sexual people should be allowed sex with at least two people? How on earth does that fit in with the “exclusive loving committed relationship” that gay men and women deserve to have blessed? And, do we really have a number of transexuals in the priesthood?  Seriously?  Or is this just some PC, better lump it all in together lest someone’s sexuality be insulted pandering.  Ridiculous world.  Repent and be saved is NOT sin and call it good.

[5] Posted by Linda M on 7-8-2010 at 08:01 AM · [top]

God simply calls LGBT into faith and ministry and we find ways of inhabiting space in the church…

Well that is simply true on the surface but what he and the LBGT fail to understand and I mean Epic Fail is that God maybe simply calling them like He does every sinner whose life He wants to change, reshape, re-mold, etc… He does not want to leave them the way He has found them and that is the missing key in t heir thinking and believing.
God is not simply calling LGBT into faith and ministry to stay that way and become clergy of any level. But they have found ways of inhabiting space in the church while still living out a lie of a life and taking over the church with their agenda in plain view and not God’s agenda.

[6] Posted by TLDillon on 7-8-2010 at 08:49 AM · [top]

By the way I rather like being “narrow minded” since the path to God is narrow not broad.

[7] Posted by TLDillon on 7-8-2010 at 10:00 AM · [top]

I guess that I am “bigoted, prejudiced, narrow-minded and lacking in the primary Christian virtue of love.” However, I am not a Stand Firm blogger.

We have to remember that the devil also calls people into ordained ministry. I’ve seen it happen. See “The Screwtape Letters.”

By their fruits they are known.

[8] Posted by Ralph on 7-8-2010 at 10:48 AM · [top]

Ooooh, an un-complement from a worthy opponent. Congrats SFIF team, you must be proud.

[9] Posted by Hosea6:6 on 7-8-2010 at 12:36 PM · [top]

My favorite line in Greg’s response?  “We don’t try and create social justice campaigns based on our peculiar set of dysfunctions.”  Very well said, Greg!  Very well said indeed.

[10] Posted by Townsend Waddill+ on 7-8-2010 at 02:00 PM · [top]

I suppose they could consecrate a lawn ornament the next bishop, and if we objected, they would call us bigoted, prejudiced, narrow-minded, reactionary ... gnomophobes.

carl   LOL

[11] Posted by carl on 7-8-2010 at 03:11 PM · [top]

7.  Make that two of us, TLDillon!  “Straight is the gate and narrow the way” is a line from an old Hank Williams tune, and is it ever appropriate!

[12] Posted by Cennydd10 on 7-8-2010 at 04:48 PM · [top]

The point about the Priesthood is a valid one. 

It makes no sense to me to have differing threshold standards, in terms of personal behavior, for the Priesthood and the Episcopate.  Such standards are ultimately impossible to maintain.

[13] Posted by Going Home on 7-8-2010 at 05:00 PM · [top]

The LGBT “inhabit space in the church” in the same way that sawdust or insect parts or other adulterants inhabit poorly-made sausage. If you don’t notice it you might wonder why you feel a bit ill. If it’s present in enough quantities to be prominent and unavoidable, you’ll be disgusted and might be severely sickened. The right thing to do at that point is to get your stomach pumped.

Similarly, the proper thing to do is purge all LGBT activists (celibate or not) from the councils of the Church. It’s not just the behavior - it’s the false teaching that seeks to justify what the Lord calls “an abomination”. Such teachers can’t be trusted with the care of souls.

Bully for the CoE in keeping at least one wolf snatching up a crozier.

[14] Posted by Doug Stein on 7-8-2010 at 07:14 PM · [top]

I’ve been pondering a comment to this thread for about 24 hours now…  AndrewA at #4 made a point I think is worth repeating: there is a difference between “LGBT activists” and “people who are dealing with homosexuality” (or whatever issue) in their lives.  I speak in generalities, I know, but one tends to want things on their terms, and the other, if grateful for Jesus, tends to live life willingly on His terms.

I am reminded of this after attending the funeral of Al Medinger last week.  Al and his wife Willa were longtime Episcopalians (and later, Anglicans) who ministered for years to people dealing with sexual sin in their lives. (Al was the founder of Regeneration Ministries in Baltimore.) In particular, Al had been caught in a double-life - outwardly an upstanding Christian family man on the vestry at church, but pursuing secret gay encounters all the while.  It was destroying the marriage and himself.  Eventually, Al was desperate enough of his own situation, yet just hopeful enough in God, to hand his life back over to Jesus.  And Jesus restored him and restored Al and Willa’s marriage.

I am also reminded of the line from Colin’s statement:

...that God simply calls LGBT into faith and ministry and we find ways of inhabiting space in the church…

Of course Colin has a different idea about it, but this does happen.  At the funeral, I ran into another couple from my church - we had gone independently of one another and did not know the other knew the Medingers.  We went because we had been deeply ministered to by their example and ministry.  A couple days later, I had lunch with our associate pastor (arranged before the funeral was scheduled), and I shared briefly with him the experience of the funeral and the ministry that Regeneration played in my life and (confidentially) the lives of others in our church.  Unbeknownst to me, our pastors have been discussing among themselves the need for such a ministry in our area and what role, if any, our church should play in this.  Yes, Jesus does call all to Him to come, repent of whatever sin they are in, and follow Him.  The result of true repentance is gratitude and, sometimes, astonishing ministry.

[15] Posted by Reformed Wanderer on 7-8-2010 at 09:15 PM · [top]

Doug Stein, I disagree with this line: “The LGBT “inhabit space in the church” in the same way that sawdust or insect parts or other adulterants inhabit poorly-made sausage.”

People who are gays or lesbians are just like all the other sinners in the church—you or me.  We are not sawdust or insect parts or other adulterants.  We are made in the image of God, sinners but greatly loved, and God is committed to working within us to transform us.

I don’t believe that sinners are sawdust.  I do believe that proudly knowingly unrepentant sinners are sawdust in the church.  I do think there is a difference.

Plenty of gays and lesbians are just like me and just like you—struggling and praying and holding on to Jesus and falling and getting back up and asking forgiveness.  Others are the ones trying to get the church to bless and acclaim and promote their sin.

[16] Posted by Sarah on 7-8-2010 at 10:30 PM · [top]

And the rest are the ones who have to take the fall for what they do.

[17] Posted by Cennydd10 on 7-8-2010 at 10:35 PM · [top]

Sarah - whenever I write “LGBT”, I do nor mean the person afflicted with SSA nor do I even mean those who stumble by acting upon it. I’m specifically referring to those who have so wound up their identity with their besetting sin that they have become the sin.  It is the cause and prime motivator of their life. It is the message they spread with an evangelistic zeal. *Those* are what I mean by LGBT. Perhaps I should always append “activist” to clarify it.

Also, when I use a strong word like “purge”, I’m referring to positions of trust and leadership in the Church. The doors should be open to call all sinners (that means all) to hear the Gospel and be changed. We should not let the vocal unrepentent sinners redefine the Scriptures or the faith.

So with those two clarifications, I’ll respectfully stand by my original statement. Imagine if Louis Crew had been shut down at the beginning of his Long March through TEO. That’s what I mean by an adulterant!


[18] Posted by Doug Stein on 7-8-2010 at 11:11 PM · [top]

Very interesting that one of the bloggers on Colin Coward’s article wrote in to defend the ABC. Using the handle “Southwark Cleric” he writes:

This would have happened without the leak. Many public and private letters of protest have been written over the last 2 weeks to the Archbishop and other authorities: apparently the Acting Diocesan Bishop has been been deluged.
3) It was not just conservative evangelicals: it has been conservative ev’s, charismatics, open ev’s, and traditionally minded AngloCatholics
4) Jeffrey John did not go to Reading for one reason: the Diocese of Oxford had been warned it would have gone bankrupt within a year. The same may have happened in Southwark. Jeffrey John could have cost all of us very dearly.

Criticising the Archbishop of Canterbury in all this only weakens the church. We have to pray and think about what will bring unity and above all GROWTH to Southwark.

If this is correct, then it is heartening news - it indicates that many Anglicans in England care enough to write to their hierarchy on this issue, and it also means that the hierarchy are thinking seriously about issues of resources and growth (or its opposite).

Its not an issue of “threats” - this is reality. The CofE is standing on the edge of the financial abyss, and its leaders need to think very seriously about where they take it. Consecrating Jeffrey John and permitting women bishops is a guaranteed way to cause even more parishioners to drop out of church or withhold contributions. The CofE cannot afford that - it already has its financial back to the wall.

[19] Posted by MichaelA on 7-8-2010 at 11:28 PM · [top]

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