I think the problem I'm having with your arguments Richard is they have an air of confident arrogance. Different translations of the bible have literally started whole denominations and practically started wars. Your approach to translations and the significance of their differences seems dangerously dismissive if your goal is to understand and commune with other believers.

Which is the other issue I have with your arguments--the stance you hold that "it's a simple message." 2,000 years of in-fighting and disagreements to this day prove that completely to be false. It's hardly a "simple" message. You and I wouldn't be having this back and forth discussion if it was so "simple."

Secondly, there are many practices that were based on biblical understanding at the time, that have evolved and changed. From slavery to the way women were/are treated. I'm sure you'll say that homosexuality isn't one of them. But, then again, I'm sure that's what believers in the south said about slavery. Everyone has their vested interest in their interpretation of scripture being the end-all, be-all "right" one.

Lastly, who are you to say a Christian man or woman, who loves God, keeps His commandments, but who also happens to be in a gay relationship is not a Christian.? It's one thing to say you personally disagree with with that lifestyle and based on your understanding of the scripture, you feel is something God doesn't approve of. But your attitude and stance is the kind that leads to parents sending their kids to "conversion therapy" and young women being spiritually abused due to dogmatic, unmoving, over-confident interpretations of the bible. You come off as having a lack of humility at the fact that for generations all of this has been debated to this day.

Also, you wrongly make the assumption that for 2000 years Christian scholars have not questioned the "sin" of homosexual practice. This is not true. For about 1500 years after the writing of Genesis, church scholars did not equate same sex acts as the sin for which Sodom and Gomorrah were destroyed. To this day, there's is debate about why S&G were destroyed by God. Many theologians believe that the reason is tied to this verse:

"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."

-Ezekiel 16:49

You too seem like a sincere guy. I have read about and studied apologetics for years. So, like you, I know all the arguments on both sides. Unlike you, apparently, my solution has been to recognize that there are too many differences of opinion for ANYONE to claim they are "right" and everyone else "wrong." Whenever I see anyone hold onto their beliefs and interpretation that strongly, red flags and alarms start going off. As the good book says, "Pride comes before the fall." 😉

Ask yourself what your motivation is to debating so vociferously with others about what Jesus taught about sexual sin. Why is it not enough to realize there are other believers who see it different than you?

MY answer as to why I debate so vociferously for the opposite is not to prove I'm right about the bible, but instead to offer love, peace, and compassion to whole groups of people that have been abused and traumatized by the church. If more people who believe like you, ACTED more like a loving brother or sister in Christ (as opposed to a prognosticator of biblical truth), the church would be that much stronger.

I think it's safe to say, we're at a point where we have to agree to disagree. 😊

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