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The church and homosexuality [July 12, 2006 {0516}; An e-Review Florida UMNS Commentary by Bishop Timothy W. Whitaker]

The church and homosexuality [July 12, 2006 {0516}; An e-Review Florida UMNS Commentary by Bishop Timothy W. Whitaker]

e-Review Florida United Methodist News Service

In the Letter of Revelations, Jesus says, "Blessed are those who wash their robes, that they may have the right to the tree of life and may go through the gates into the city. Outside are the dogs, those who practice magic arts, the sexually immoral, the murderers, the idolaters and everyone who loves and practices falsehood." (Rev 22:14-15,NIV) But then in the next breath, he says that the ignoring of sexual immoralities, i.e. homosexuality, is acceptable, and even permissable for church membership, the church body, of "today's generation": God's kingdom here on earth. His logic and reasoning is contradictory and self-negating and totally lacks any conviction. Like my papa would say, "Sounds like he trying to talk out of both sides of his mouth!" I pray that my brother in Christ Jesus and my superlative leader would pray and revisit his doubting heart and seek out God's marvelous grace and wisdom to reaffirm his confindence in God's Word and in His Integrity. As one of our Apostolic Church Fathers, St. Clement, said to the readers of the church of Corinth: "may the all-merciful and beneficent Father ha(ve) bowels [of compassion] towards those that fear Him, and kindly and lovingly bestows His favors upon those who come to Him with a simple mind. Wherefore let us not be double-minded; neither let our soul be lifted up on account of His exceedingly great and glorious gifts. Far from us be that which is written, 'Wretched are they who are of a double mind, and of a doubting heart; and those who say, These things we have heard even in the times of our fathers; but,behold, we have grown old, and none of them has happened unto us.'(Letter to the Corinthians) James exhorts:"Anyone, then, who knows the good he ought to do and doesn't do it, sins." (James 4:17,NIV) The Psalmist declares:"I hate double-minded men, but I love your law. You are my refuge and my shield; I have put my hope in your word. Away from me, you evildoers,that I may keep the commands of my God! Sustain me according to your promise, and I will live; do not let my hopes be dashed. Uphold me, and I will be delivered; I will always have regard for your decrees. You reject all who stray from your decrees, for their deceitfulness is in vain. All the wicked of the earth you discard like dross; therefore I love your statutes. My flesh trembles in fear of you; I stand in awe of your laws. (Psalms 119:113-120, NIV) Then, Jesus declares, "See, I am coming soon, and my reward is with me, to repay all according to their deeds. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End. Blessed are those who wash their robes so they can enter through the gates of the city and eat the fruit from the tree of life. Outside the city are the dogs—the sorcerers, the sexually immoral, the murderers, the idol worshipers, and all who love to live a lie. I, Jesus, have sent my angel to give you this message for the churches. I am both the source of David and the heir to his throne. I am the bright morning star. The Spirit and the bride say, 'Come.' Let each one who hears them say, 'Come.' Let the thirsty ones come—anyone who wants to. Let them come and drink the water of life without charge. And I solemnly declare to everyone who hears the prophetic words of this book: If anyone adds anything to what is written here, God will add to that person the plagues described in this book. And if anyone removes any of the words of this prophetic book, God will remove that person's share in the tree of life and in the holy city that are described in this book. He who is the faithful witness to all these things says, 'Yes, I am coming soon!' Amen! Come, Lord Jesus! (Rev 22:12-20,NLT) May my brother receive these words of love with an Open Mind and Open Heart. Along with me, let us Open our Door to invite our Lord and Savior, Christ Jesus to come in and sit at the table of our hearts to eat and drink from the offerings of our life as we learn of Him and seek to follow His Way. Amen. Your's truly in Christ's Love & Faith, Steven W. Greer

Steven Greer
St. John's United Methodist Church

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