Wednesday, July 13, 2005


This post is both a response to Shane Rayner's post at Wesley Blog, and Gavin Richardson's post at Hit the Back Button.

SO, what are different Christian thinkers thinking when it comes to The Church and homosexuality? Here're a few different perspectives to aid in the conversation:

1. John Milbank:The Anglican Communion's Argument Over Homosexuality

2. N. T. Wright:Interview with Anglican Bishop N.T. Wright of Durham, England

3. Several Religious leaders including United Methodist Bishop Will Willimon: Protestants and Gays

4. Professor Richard Hays: Richard Hays' story of Gary

5. Richard B. Hays: Homosexuality: Rebellion Against God

6. Stan Grenz: Welcoming but Not Affirming

sorry that I didn't have any women theologians- I searched for resources by Rosemary Reuther, Nancy Murphy, and Sallie McFague (3 theologians I have much respect for) but I didn't find anything that looked helpful.

So what are your thoughts? Which articles do you find helpful, harmful, or challenging?


Kevin Rector said...

I think that I resonated most with the positions of N.T. Wright and Stan Grenz.

John Meunier said...

Thank you for these links.

I was disappointed that Bishop Willimon seemed to comment on the debate rather than take part in it. His "Why I am a United Methodist" is a cherished book of mine.

I find Millbank's position the most resonating with my own feelings. Although I cannot accept so easily as he does the idea of schism.

I find myself most troubled that I cannot be a Christian these days without having to engage in these arguments. I am struggling to determine how my faith should inform my life, but instead the passions of the church seem to be spent on who we let in the door.

If this is what Christianity is about at its core, then no wonder secularism continues to triumph.

Zoomdaddy said...

Here are my two cents,

Re: Milbank, I think he doesn't have justification to endorse sacramental blessing of same-sex unions, especially if he is so "radically orthodox" as is ascribed to his theology.

Re: NT Wright, good solid stuff in general. Have to remember that he had to uphold a publically neutral stance while he served on the Eames Commission. In light of the most recent events (essentially shunning the ECUSA and Canada without formally dismissing them from the communion) I think he may take a stronger tack on these issues.

Re: various leaders, insufficient for genuine informed dialogue, sound bites make better fodder for polemics than discussion (and here I am soundbiting).

Re: Hays' two articles, thoughtful, but not entirely trustworthy in its exegesis. For example, his unwillingness to acknowledge the "symptoms" of sinfulness (of which homosexual behavior is one) as a sin worthy of wrath stops short of the escalation of sin, judgment, more pronounced sin, more judgment, and so on that Paul is conveying in the text.

Re: Grenz, well said, compassionate yet upholds traditional Christian sexual morals and ethics very well.

That's my take! :)

Zoomdaddy said...

Re: Hays, example is from his discussion on Romans 1ff (forgot to specify which text, above)