Saturday, April 30, 2005

A Pertinent Quote

"How much energy do we modern Christians put into condemning sexual sins compared to avoiding the judgmental, Pharisaical attitude of those with rocks in their hands? Who killed Jesus, adulterers or Pharisees?" Brian McLaren


John said...

Well then, Jonathan, at what point do we condemn sin? When do we say 'if you brazenly and unrepentently commit sin X, you will not be a minister in the UMC'?

St.Phransus said...

There's a lot of different sins outlined in the Bible, you know. I'm not sure one should have more importance over another. Jesus seems to put a lot more emphasis on sins of exclusion- shutting people out, than on sexual sin.

But, to answer your question honestly- i don't know at what point we draw the line. i wish i could feel like this is a clear cut situation, BUT i don't.

i know people who are gay and are christian. i know people who feel called by God to share their in ministry. i don't know that anyone has the right to deny someone to live out their calling. what do we do with that, if they have grown up in the methodist tradition? tell them that they are not welcome? that the calling they've heard is not really God's call? wow, i don't feel comfortable with that.

however, i do respect tradition, but i think tradition must live in tension with the work of the Spirit and the Work of the Spirit will challenge the status quo every step of the way.

so john, obviously i have an incomplete answer that solves nothing. but hey, i haven't heard any answer that has satisfied me yet.

John said...

I've noticed that you and Gavin, perhaps because you are youth pastors, are more concerned with true Kingdom work than getting neck-deep in these destructive debates.

Honestly, I am less concerned with the homosexuality issue, than with another matter. I spent three days at Garret-Evangelical Theological Seminary last month, competing for scholarships. There, I encountered many people who espoused universal salvation and pantheism. Roaming through the UMC blogosphere has shown me similiar opinions.

It is this issue, not homosexuality, which makes me worried about the future of the UMC.

But I probably should pull back, put aside these disputes, and prepare myself for worshipping God tomorrow morning. There is so much to celebrate every day.

St.Phransus said...

here here brother. this is very true. i have little use for universal salvation, nor do i have use for the judgemental "john 3:16" brand of christianity.

i simply want bring folks to know the way of living that follows the "way" of christ- and through that experience the love of jesus.

didn't mean to preach. enjoy your sunday worship celebration.


ken carter said...

jonathan, i like the emphasis on following Jesus--being a Christian and a United Methodist---as a particular way of life. keep up your writing and this blog!

St.Phransus said...

thanks ken. encouragement from a mentor- that means a lot.

(since I've read your book and gleaned a lot from it- you are now officially a mentor to me; thanks)

PM Summer said...

John 3:16 as judgementalism. Very interesting, I don't think I've ever heard that before.