Monthly Archives: April 2019

THE REVIVAL OF JOHN STOTT : Sam Allberry and Revoice LGBT Activist Run to Problematic John Stott for Legitimization

Rev Thomas Littleton                                                                                                 4/27/2019

Earlier in the Spring of 2019 The LGBT activist organization Revoice announced its new conference speakers and rolled out its statement of faith. The statement sites and links the organization founded by John Stott .

” As an evangelical organization that cooperates with Christians from a variety of churches, denominations, and traditions, Revoice gladly adopts the following statement of faith from Langham Partnership, an interdenominational coalition of Christians from around the globe.”

Home

 

 

Statement of Faith

In today’s activist charged climate and “social justice “push of issues like Racism and LGBT in the church, it has become very common to link the new language and movements to other trusted historic names ,ministries ,legacies and  people for legitimization. Although for some John Stott would be considered an anchor for gaining trust and access to evangelicals with the REVISIONIST message-in reality  Stott and his problematic stance on homosexuality fails to provide the kind of cover this effort appears to be seeking .

SAM ALLBERRY IS LINKED AS WELL TO A FRESH EFFORT TO BRING THE STOTT LEGACY TO BEAR ON CURRENT LGBT

The book linked below and endorsed by Allberry  is a republication with “revised- updated – expanded” materials on SSA/ homosexuality and the evangelical church.

 

Same Sex Relationships

Classic wisdom from John Stott

“What does the Bible say about same-sex relationships? How should Christians think about this divisive and heartfelt issue? And what of those who are caught in the crossfire: the brothers and sisters who experience same-sex attraction, but are committed to being faithful to the teaching of scripture and resisting it?”

“In this revised, updated and extended edition of the classic chapter from Issues Facing Christians Today, the late John Stott lays out the biblical position on same-sex relationships with care, wisdom and compassion.”

“In addition to Dr Stott’s timeless Biblical wisdom, there are forewords by Dr John Sentamu, (the Archbishop of York) and Dr Mark Labberton (President of Fuller Theological Seminary), a helpful preface by the editor, Sean Doherty, testimonies from same-sex attracted Christians and questions for reflection and discussion.”

WHY NOW?

The repubication and it’s timing  appear to be an effort to add validation and historic context to the modern day / Allberry/ Revoice / Gospel Coalition  / LGBT+ Christianity collective . Yet Stott in fact looks to be cause for even further concern as to how long these troubling views have been seeking way into the mainstream of Christian thinking.

https://www.thegoodbook.com/same-sex-relationships

“JOHN STOTT REMAINS A COMPELLING AND URGENT VOICE IN TODAY’S DISCUSSIONS ABOUT HUMAN SEXUALITY”
Sam Allberry of Living Out
LIVING OUT MINISTRY HAS FURTHER TIES TO THE STOTT REPUBLICATION PROJECT
Sean Doherty writer for  Living Out is the editor of the John Stott “revised- updated- expanded book on homosexuality .This insight gives an even more contrived feel to the effort and portrays even deeper ties between Allberry’s Living Out and the controversial Revoice “LGBT+ flourishing / Queer Christian” movement.
“Editor’s Preface
by Sean Doherty”
“It’s a daunting privilege for any scholar to be asked to edit
an essay by so distinguished and justly admired a figure as
John Stott. In my case, there was an additional reason why it
felt especially so.
As a new Christian, I came to realise in my late teens that I
was gay; and, not quite ready to tell anyone else yet, I wanted to
know what my new-found faith said about my sexuality. Almost
at random in a local Christian bookshop, I picked up a copy of
Authentic Christianity, an anthology of Stott’s writings covering
a wide variety of topics.1
I looked up homosexuality, and found
an excerpt which I now know to be from the chapter on samesex relationships in Stott’s book Issues Facing Christians Today,
which forms the basis for this book. Here is what I read:
“We are all human beings. That is to say, there is no such
phenomenon as “a homosexual”. There are only people,
human persons, made in the image and likeness of God,
yet fallen … However strongly we may disapprove of
homosexual practices, we have no liberty to dehumanise
those who engage in them.”
STOTT BOOK AND FULLER LEADERSHIP
Of course it comes as no surprise that Fuller Seminaries President  provided a foreword for the Stott republication .
“Foreword by Mark Labberton
PRESIDENT OF FULLER THEOLOGICAL SEMINARY
“Despite a cultural shift in attitudes toward sexuality,
thoughtful Christians must continue to wrestle over such
profound and intimate issues in order to allow our obedience
to Christ and our faithfulness to Scripture to direct us.
Read this reflection from John Stott slowly and carefully.
Breathe deeply of this oxygen of faithfulness, compassion, and
truth, and then live wisely and humbly in a church and world
that needs such truth and grace.”
Mark Labberton
STOTTS VIEWS ON HOMOSEXUALITY AND ORIENTATION
John Stott on homosexuality and the church

1. We have a mandate to speak the truth, but we are called to speak the truth in love.

2. As far as the Bible is concerned, there is no such phenomenon as “a homosexual” or “a heterosexual”: there are only people made in the image of God. We all share in the glory and tragedy of being human and we share it in our sexuality as well as other areas of our lives.

3. Since God is love, and has made us in his own likeness, he has given us a capacity to love and be loved. He intends us to live in community, not in solitude.

4. The person who cannot marry and who is living a celibate and chaste life, whatever his or her sexual orientation, is living a life which is pleasing to God.

5. We should not deny that homosexual relationships can be loving. But [true] love is concerned for the highest welfare of the beloved. And our highest human welfare is found in obedience to God’s law and purpose, not in revolt against them.

6. God does indeed accept us “just as we are”, and we do not have to make ourselves good first; indeed we cannot. But his “acceptance” means that he fully and freely forgives all who repent and believe, not that he condones our continuance in sin. Again, it is true that we are called to accept one another, but as fellow penitents and fellow pilgrims, not as fellow sinners who are resolved to persist in our sinning.

7. [Jesus’] offer of friendship to sinners like us is truly wonderful. But he welcomes us in order to redeem and transform us, not to leave us alone in our sins.

8. The yoke of Christ brings rest, not turmoil; conflict comes only to those who resist it.

9. Sexual experience is not essential to human fulfilment. To be sure, it is a good gift of God, but it is not given to all, and it is not indispensable to humanness. … Jesus Christ was single, yet perfect in his humanity. So it is possible to be single and human at the same time!

10. Abstinence is not only good, if God calls us to celibacy; it is also possible.

11. The Christian’s horizons are not bounded by this world. Jesus Christ is coming again; our bodies are going to be redeemed; sin, pain and death are going to be abolished; and both we and the universe are going to be transformed.

12. At present we are living “in between times”, between the grace which we grasp by faith and the glory which we anticipate in hope. Between them lies love. Yet love is just what the church has generally failed to show to homosexual people.

13. It is sad that our Western culture inhibits the development of rich same-sex friendships by engendering the fear of being ridiculed or rejected for being gay on the one hand, or by assuming that same-sex intimacy is necessarily sexual on the other.

14. Perplexing and painful as the homosexual Christian’s dilemma is, Jesus Christ offers him or her—indeed, all of us—faith, hope and love: the faith to accept both his standards and his grace to maintain them, the hope to look beyond present suffering to future glory, and the love to care for and support one another. “But the greatest of these is love” (1 Corinthians 13:13).

Same Sex Relationships by John Stott, with forewords by Dr John Sentamu (The Archbishop of York) and Dr Mark Labberton (President of Fuller Theological Seminary), is available to pre-order now.

First note that in #14 Stott affirms “homosexual Christian” as a description for believers. In # 13 as echoed by Revoice and Living Out ,Stott is promoting Same Sex Intimate -non sexual relationships . The language of #12 is in essence the workshop of the 2019 conference scheduled for one of the Revoice officers to to present this coming June.In #10 he is advocating for celibacy as the answer because in #4 Stott affirms “homosexual orientation ” which brings with it the assumption that orientation is not changed by the Gospel. In #2 Stott is denying biblical heterosexuality . In the context of these same talking points Stott advocates for all these to be living in “community ” doing a subtle shuffle for homosexuals as Christians  to be included in church congregational membership.(more on that later)

KINSEY AND STOTT – MORE BACKGROUND ON JOHN STOTT AND THE HOMOSEXUAL ISSUE

 

John Stott promotes the work of disgraced and  perverted “sexologist ” Alfred Kinsey who died while under Federal Indictment for his research materials and how some were obtained. In Stotts 1990 book “Issues Facing Christians Today” in the chapter ” on homosexual partnerships” . The chapter is reproduced in the 1998 book “Same-Sex Partnerships? A Christian contribution to contemporary debate”.

Kinsey’s star faded quickly. By his death in 1956 Kinsey’s research was under serious scrutiny and he died under FBI investigation. Those FBI reports can be seen at the link below.

Vault Home • Alfred Kinsey

Alfred Kinsey

Alfred Charles Kinsey (1894-1956) was an American biologist and professor known for his work in the study of human sexuality. The FBI investigated him for possible violations of the Interstate Transportation of Obscene Matter statutes.

https://vault.fbi.gov/Alfred%20Kinsey

 

By 2004 not even the New York Times was comfortable whitewashing Kinsey’s legacy and published an article entitled-

Alfred Kinsey: Liberator or Pervert?

Yet John Stott quotes from Kinsey and his research in this piece first written in 1990

First, ‘we are all human beings. That is to say, there is no such phenomenon as “a homosexual”. There are only people, human persons, made in the image and likeness of God, yet fallen, with all the glory and the tragedy which that paradox implies, including sexual potential and sexual problems.’ (p336)

‘Secondly, we are all sexual beings. Our sexuality, according to both Scripture and experience, is basic to our humanness… Moreover, not only are we all sexual beings, but we all have a particular sexual orientation. The kinsey3American zoologist Alfred Kinsey’s famous investigation into human sexuality led him to place every human being somewhere ona spectrum from 0 (an exclusively heterosexual bias, attracted only to the opposite sex) to 6 (an exclusively homosexual bias, attracted only to the same sex, whether homosexual males or “lesbians”, as homosexual females are usually called). In between these poles Dr Kinsey plotted varying degrees of bisexuality, referring to people whose sexual orientation is either dual or indeterminate or fluctuating.’ His researches led him to conclude that 4% of men (at least of white American men) are exclusively homosexual throughout their lives, that 10% are for up to three years, and that as many as 37% have some kind of homosexual experience between adolescence and old age. The percentage of homosexual women he found to be lower, although it rises to 4 between the ages of 20 and 35. The numbers are high enough to warrant Dr D. J. West’s comment that ‘homosexuality is an extremely common condition.’ (p336

We have grown accustomed to distinguish between a homosexual orientation or “inversion” (for which people are not responsible) and homosexual physical practices (for which they are). The importance of this distinction goes beyond the attribution of responsibility to the attribution of guilt. We may not blame people for what they are, though we may for what they do. And in every discussion about homosexuality we must be rigorous in differentiating between this “being” and “doing”, that is between a person’s identity and activity, sexual preference and sexual practice, constitution and conduct.”  (p337-38)

‘Thirdly, we are all sinners, indeed (among other things) sexual sinners.’

‘Fourth, in addition to being human, sexual and sinful creatures, I take it that we are all Christians. At least the readers I have in mind in this chapter are not people who reject the lordship of Jesus Christ…’ (p337)

Perhaps among the most puzzling of Stotts comments is that he ask the question below and then refers the answer to it and other questions to the work of Donald J West who researched pedophilia .

‘Whether homosexual partnerships – lifelong and loving – are a Christian option… In particular, can the Bible be shown to sanction homosexual partnerships, or at least not to condemn them?’ (p338)

Donald West is quoted as having asserted that ” child sexual abuse was sometimes ‘beneficial’, referred to child abusers as ‘lovers’, and referred to a child being abused by an adult as a ‘relationship”.

Dr. Donald West

“‘Admittedly, pedophiliac relationships do sometimes seem beneficial. A child may learn much from a consistent and caring adult lover and come to cherish him as a friend long after the period of erotic attachment has passed.” [p.255, Adult Sexual Interest in Children: Implications for Social Control, by D.J. West (Institute of Criminology, Cambridge, England), from Adult Sexual Interest in Children, edited by Mark Cook and Kevin Howells, Academic Press, 1981]

More of Stott statements  referred to Donald West for answers

Others argue that homosexual behaviour is “natural” (a) because in many primitive societies it is fairly acceptable, (b) because in some advanced civilizations (ancient Greece, for example) it was even idealized, and (c) because it is quite widespread in animals. Dr DJ West, who reports this, goes on to quote Dr FA Beach, an expert on animal sexuality, who because of animal homosexual behaviour says that to describe human homosexual behaviour as “unnatural” is to “depart from strict accuracy”.’ (p348)

‘No known method of treatment or punishment,’ writes D J West, ‘offers hope of making any substantial reduction in the vast army of adults practising homosexuality’; it would be ‘more realistic to find room for them in society’. He pleads for ‘tolerance’, though not for ‘encouragement’, of homosexual behaviour. Other psychologists go further and declare that homosexuality is no longer to be regarded as a pathological condition; it is therefore to be accepted not cured. In 1973 the trustees of the American Psychiatric Association removed homosexuality from the category of mental illness.”

Source –   http://www.therealjohnstott.com/?page_id=225

MORE ON LAUSANNE MOVEMENT /JOHN STOTT /THE SAME SEX ATTRACTED LANGUAGE OF ALLBERRY AND REVOICE

Capetown South Africa 2010 meetings for Lausanne  brought much of the new language and the assertions of fixed homosexual orientation into the mainstream evangelical community

Homosexuality and the Church: Why the Church Must Speak Into the Lives of Those Impacted by Homosexuality

Lausanne presents the 2% of the world population as an unreached people group and sets out to instruct the church on reaching  homosexuals . (The problem with  this approach vs the Gospel approach to reaching sinners should be glaring to any Biblically anchored Christian. A specific sin does not qualify as an identity individually or as a “people group”)

  1. The number of people who identify as gay or lesbian, and the proportion of people who have same-sex sexual experiences, are difficult for researchers to estimate reliably for a variety of reasons. Nonetheless, studies in several countries by credible research institutes and universities have consistently shown that less than 3% and perhaps less than 2% of males are homosexually active in a given year. Female homosexuality is estimated to be approximately half or less than the male rates and appears to characterize less than 2% of the female population. Exceptions can be found in particular groups and countries. Reference: Hughes, John R. (2006). A general review of recent reports on homosexuality and lesbianism. Sexuality and Disability, 24, 195-205. The figure of 155 million people is an estimate derived by calculating 2% of the world’s population.”

LAUSANNE’S POSITION ON HOMOSEXUALS AND THE CHURCH IN 2010

Homosexuality and the Church: Why the Church Must Speak Into the Lives of Those Impacted by Homosexuality

Editor’s Note: This Cape Town 2010 Advance Paper was written by Mike Goeke as an overview of the topic to be discussed at the related session the Cape Town 2010 Congress “Sexuality: Creation, Brokenness, Truth and Grace.” Responses to this paper through the Lausanne Global Conversation were fed back to the author and others to help shape their final presentations at the Congress.

Homosexuality is a Worldwide, Cross-cultural Issue

“Christianity does not immunize people from sexual issues and struggles.  This may seem like an obvious statement.  But the church’s response to sexuality, and specifically homosexuality, indicates that, at least at some level, many in the church do not see ministry to those struggling with same-sex attraction, or those who fully embrace a gay identity, as viable targets for ministry and/or evangelism.  The truth is that homosexuality impacts the entire world.  Every culture, every religion, every society and every country are impacted by homosexuality.  And each of those persons is in need of the life-changing message of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.”

Christianity Does Not Prevent Homosexuality”

“All over the globe, people are ‘coming out’ of the closet and openly admitting and affirming their homosexuality.  In the last few years, many of these have been prominent Christians.  Some are exposed in a double life, and others come out on their own accord.”

“The church can learn something from the fact that so many prominent gay activists and personalities share a common upbringing in the church.  Their struggles began, in some way, in the church.  As you read their stories and memoirs and autobiographies, many express clearly the way their Christian upbringing impacted them as they dealt with burgeoning, growing attractions to their same gender.  For most, they heard nothing that gave them hope as they wrestled with their sexuality.  They heard condemnation, and they heard warning, and they heard fear.  But they did not hear hope for people like them.”

“As these people share their stories, it is clear that condemnation, warning and fear can work to restrain someone dealing with same-sex attraction for a time.  At some point, however, these tools no longer work.  Christian rules, Christian regimens, and Christian tradition will only go so far. ”

“The reality is that the church did not speak into the lives of many of the people we see moving from an identity based on their Christianity and into an identity based on their homosexuality.  And, ultimately, most walked away from the church of their youth in search of anyone who WOULD speak to them.  And they found that in the gay community.”

Ministering to Those Struggling Within the Church”

“Every ‘gay identified Christian’ most likely began as a Christian struggling with same-sex attraction. These are two different things and represent different places in a timeline of sexual development. The beginning struggle with sexual feelings is like any other struggle or temptation.  A struggle with same-sex attraction does not mean someone identifies as ‘gay.’ Once a person openly identifies as gay or homosexual, they have usually gone through a process that gets them to a place of some level of acceptance of their sexuality.”

“Everyone, both Christians and those with a secular world view, who deals with same-sex attraction has likely gone through some form of inner conflict about their sexuality.  But the Christian person dealing with same-sex attraction has an added component of conflict.  For someone who is not a Christian, their sexual identity has potential practical, familial, and relational ramifications for their lives.  The Christian faces all of these issues, but faces spiritual implications as well.  And for the vast majority of struggling Christians, their churches were not safe places to share their struggle.”

(NOTE THE NARRATIVE IN 2010 THAT THE CHURCH IS NOT A SAFE SPACE FOR PEOPLE WHO STRUGGLE ,ACCORDING TO LAUSANNE SO IT IS THE CHURCH WHO IS CAUSING THE PROBLEM LEADING TO SSA LEAVING AND JOINING THE GAY COMMUNITY” )

“If the struggle with same-sex attraction were to lose its stigma in the church it could be addressed early, before roots of identity entrench themselves in the fertile soil of young hearts and minds.  If men and women struggling with same-sex attraction were free to express the struggle, then they could get help for the struggle while it is still a struggle and before it becomes an identity.”

(The above talking points about addressing the issues by removing the “stigma ” was preceded by the assertions that most develop  SSA in their youth . This has given rise to the focus on youth groups, and teens by the LGBT+ Christian lobby. Who will have access to our teens in church with their message first? Will it be sound biblical teaching on sexuality or the Lausanne / APA/ Living Out / Revoice / Yarhouse / fixed orientation SSA ideology?)

The Church’s Place in the Process”

“The church is often reactive with social and cultural issues.  Instead, the church must assume its true place in the process.  The church can lead out, rather than react, by speaking to the issues first.  The church must speak to the person impacted by same sex attraction first, before the world gets its chance.  Perhaps, when that starts happening, the stories we hear will be stories of the church being part of the solution, instead of more and more stories where the church is described as the source of the problem.”

LAUSANNE 2010 WHITEPAPERS ON SAME SEX ATTRACTION /HOMOSEXUALITY AND THE CHURCH.

Some other papers and materials on SSA and Homosexuality for  Lausanne 2010 can be found here;

https://www.lausanne.org/?sfid=27242&s=Mike+Goeke+,homosexuality

Equipping the Church to Respond with Truth and Grace

Full Session: Sexuality: Creation, Brokenness, Truth and Grace Multiplex

 

JOHN STOTTS CONCLUSIONS ON HOMOSEXUALITY AND CHRISTIAN FAITH

‘The great majority of homosexual people are not responsible for their condition (though they are of course, for their conduct). Since they are not deliberate perverts, they deserve our understanding and compassion, not our rejection… At the heart of the homosexual condition is a deep loneliness, the natural human hunger for mutual love, a search for identity, and a longing for completeness. If homosexual people cannot find these things in the local ‘church family’, we have no business to go on using that expression. The alternative is not between the warm physical relationship of homosexual intercourse and the pain of isolation in the cold. There is a third option, namely a Christian environment of love, understanding, acceptance and support.’ (p360)”

ALLBERRY AND THE LONELY HEARTS CLUB REVOICE BAND.

We are watching and hearing more every day of these LGBT+ “Christian” narratives in the echo chambers of TGC/ the Southern Baptist ERLC ,and by leaders like Tim Keller of the PCA . This movement and its revoicing- rethinking – reimagining – and forcing “conversations ” on -in-around-and about the church on LGBT+ issues is not distinct from the same forced movement in the global culture. Rather it is part of it . The focus on the church and LGBT+ is often coming from the same funding into the think tanks lobbying public policy makers  and advocating for change in the church. Those like John Stott and the leaders like Tim Keller and his Gospel Coalition who have been driving the narratives since 2010 have only increased them to forced pressure for social change and “sexual  justice” for LGBT (a.k.a. sexual minorities in the church ) who are asserted over and over to have incurred some harm from the church and its past and current “attitudes ” toward LGBT persons . We are told the church has a “compassion problem ” and that WE are “hurting LGBT people”.

NO EX-GAYS ARE ALLOWED TO EXIST IN THE WORLD OF STOTT /ALLBERRY /TGC

Not once do these talking points vist the harm that homosexuality does to people and families and worst of all the TGC/Allberry / Revoice narrative does not even allow for the true life testimonies of thousands of people who have come to faith and been fully delivered from homosexuality like Dennis Jernigan, Stephen Black of Robert Lopez.

Since 2013 these narratives have escalated as TGC commissioned fellow Church of England and gay priest Sam Allberry to be it’s editor on all things LGBT and SSA. By 2018 Allberry and  Keller were introducing a “Biblical Church Inclusion Audit” for LGBT+

https://www.livingout.org/resources/the-living-out-church-audit

https://thirtypiecesofsilver.org/2018/08/17/tim-kellers-lgbtqiinclusion-audit-for-your-church-do-you-measure-up/

The audit requires for Churches  to comply as they are reviewed by Allberry’s ministry. “Living Out is delighted to bring you this day of training in partnership with the Evangelical Alliance. We ask that all who attend assent to the Evangelical Alliance Basis of Faith and its biblical and pastoral position with respect to homosexuality, summarised in these affirmations.”

Those Evangelical Alliance affirmations include #10

10. We encourage evangelical congregations to welcome and accept sexually active lesbians and gay men. However, they should do so in the expectation that they, like all of us who are living outside God’s purposes, will come in due course to see the need to be transformed ..”

FOOLISH MEANS OF EVANGELISM -“INCLUSION ” OF SINFUL IDENTITY

This means church membership is to be extended as a means of evangelism -which in fact shows extreme ignorance on the part of the EA leaders on new birth and how a person is converted and made a part of the Body of Christ.

https://www.eauk.org/resources/what-we-offer/reports/biblical-and-pastoral-responses-to-homosexuality?utm_source=old_eauk

EVANGELICAL ALLIANCE CLOSE BONDS WITH JOHN STOTT

https://www.eauk.org/church/stories/john-stott-memorial-service.cfm

Stott died in 2012 . Tim Keller was asked to do his Stateside memorial service after the funeral at ST Pauls in London. Evangelical Alliance staff were in attendance and acknowledge Stotts contribution to Christianity

“Staff from the Evangelical Alliance, including General Director Steve Clifford, were among 2,000 people who joined Rev Stott’s closest friends and colleagues, as well as the Archbishops of Canterbury and York and the Bishop of London, at the memorial service.”

“Born in 1921 in London, John Stott was a member of All Souls Church, Langham Place, all his life. Among his most celebrated writings were Basic Christianity and The Radical Disciple. He served as one of the Queen’s Chaplains and was awarded a CBE in the Queen’s New Year’s Honours list in 2005 – the same year he was named in Time magazine’s top 100 most influential people.”

“Paying tribute, Geoff Tunnicliffe, secretary general of the World Evangelical Alliance, said: “Although many of the 600 million evangelical Christians may never have heard of John Stott, almost without exception they will have been unconsciously influenced through what they or their pastors have read from his pen. The whole of the leadership of the WEA acknowledges with great thankfulness to God the legacy that John Stott has left behind to encourage and guide us.”

TGC SOCIAL JUSTICE AND JOHN STOTT- PART OF THE MUCH LARGER PROBLEM

In 2013 TGC and Trevin Wax were using the John Stott legacy in early efforts to promote the TGC social Justice narrative

When John Stott Confronted Billy Graham

Most Christians who follow any mainstream news in the church today know of the problem the “social gospel” which is manifested in its new clothing of “Social Justice ” is causing in the seminaries and churches. These concerns led to the Dallas Statement condemning Social Justice as a Gospel cause. Generally this problem is understood by  a growing number of concerned believers to be originating from The Gospel Coalition and it’s affiliates . In fact John Stott was decades ahead of the curve on this crippling agenda being embraced by the church.

John Stott changes his mind

In 1966 Stott affirmed

““The commission of the Church, therefore, is not to reform society, but to preach the Gospel… the primary task of the members of Christ’s Church is to be Gospel heralds, not social reformers.”

“It is the offer of forgiveness to sinful men and women on the ground of the Name of the crucified and risen Christ. There is no other message but the offer of forgiveness, and no other ground but the name of Christ. This is the good news we are commissioned to herald. It is the Gospel according to the Scriptures. This Gospel will never change.” Stott’s message was clear: “According to this commission, which is still addressed to us today, our primary duty is to be neither reformers of society nor healers of the sick, but rather preachers of the Gospel.”

“the cumulative emphasis seems clear… the mission of the church, according to the specification of the risen Lord is exclusively a preaching, converting and teaching mission.”

But by 1974 and the launch of Lausanne – Stott had changed his tune

“Christ sends us into the world to serve. For he came to serve. Not just to seek and to save, not just to preach, but more generally to serve… Now he tells us that as the Father sent him into the world, so he sends us. Our mission, like his, is to be one of service” (Stott’s emphasis).  He argued that it was in a servant role “that we find the right synthesis of evangelism and social action.”  In an attempt to reconcile the concept of ‘mission as service’ with the Great Commission, Stott said: “I venture to say that we give it [that is, the Great Commission] too prominent a place in our Christian thinking.”

““we express penitence both for our neglect of our Christian social responsibility and for our naive polarization in having sometimes regarded evangelism and social concern as mutually exclusive… we affirm that evangelism and socio-political involvement are both part of our Christian duty.”

““It is our duty to be involved in socio-political action; that is, both in social action (caring for society’s casualties) and in political action (concerned for the structures of society itself).”

As Stotts resolve weakened or his influences broadened- he was willing to surrender the Great Commission to the “social gospel” . His views on Homosexuality certainly position it to be heralded as one of the great causes for social justice . Now we see those who are pushing for just such LGBT+ “justice” in the church are clinging to the Stott legacy . It is a popular yet troubling legacy indeed.

CHRISTIAN FAMILY:THE FINAL FRONTIER AND THE LAST LINE OF DEFENSE

By late  2018 Allberry and the entire heard of LGBT activist inside the evangelical circles in the US were fully attacking the nuclear family as an idol and advocating for SSA adoption and foster care.These same narratives are echoed by Revoice and by most in TGC who come from the SSA camp including Rosaria Butterfield .

Where will it end?

Answer?

It will not !

These are highly organized and coordinated efforts for social change in the church in order to bring about the long range goals of acceptance and affirmation of homosexuality in the church. This effort goes up the ladder to the highest levels of- to some of the  most trusted men in Christian leadership.

“Just say no” to this insane in house activism -and choose the timeless Word of God instead.

Colossians 2  “18 Let no one cheat you of your reward, taking delight in false humility and worship of angels, intruding into those things which he has [l]not seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind, 19 and not holding fast to the Head, from whom all the body, nourished and knit together by joints and ligaments, grows with the increase that is from God.

20 Therefore, if you died with Christ from the basic principles of the world, why, as though living in the world, do you subject yourselves to regulations— 21 “Do not touch, do not taste, do not handle,” 22 which all concern things which perish with the using—according to the commandments and doctrines of men? 23 These things indeed have an appearance of wisdom in self-imposed religion, false humility, and neglect of the body, but are of no value against the indulgence of the flesh.

REVOICE 2019 ECHOES SAM ALLBERRY / LIVING OUT -PROMOTING GAY CELIBATE CHILDREN’S PASTOR .

Rev Thomas Littleton                                                                                                 4/20/2019

Few in Christian mainstream media want to report on the newest conference by Revoice and founder Nate Collins even though the 2018 event became THE story of last year. With grave concerns still lingering among Biblical conservatives ,Christian media seems poised to all but ignore the even more disturbing revelations of the 2019 Revoice conference line up and focus.

As reported last Summer and into the Fall months , Sam Allberry (the ERLC voice on all things LGBT and an editor at The Gospel Coalition) has been promoting the hiring of LGBT church staff and the “sharing of children”with celibate homosexuals in ERLC’s ministries conferences and in Sam’s Living Out “Inclusive Church Audit .

https://thirtypiecesofsilver.org/2018/10/16/erlc-family-conference-redefines-family-as-the-inclusive-church/

Now comes the news that one of the Revoice 2019 Workshops  is celebrating a Wyoming church whose pastors discuss the Children’s Ministry pastors “coming out” as gay to their congregation and being “embraced” by the church body.( Images from Revoice.us 2019 conference site are provided under fair use provisions to report and provide information to the public). Here are  the workshop and biographies for Element Church staffers role in Revoice below .

“Coming out as a gay pastor”

“What does it look like for a church not only to embrace gay people in their congregation but also to include them on their staff? Jeff and John share from their experience of creating a church culture where John was able to come out to their congregation as a celibate, gay pastor. Together, they reflect on the principles and practical steps that led up to John’s coming out and the spiritual impact this has had on them and their church.”

THIS WORKSHOP IS A TAG TEAM EFFORT OF THE SENIOR /FOUNDING PASTOR OF ELEMENT CHURCH IN CHEYENNE WYOMING .

 

“Jeff Maness is the founding and Lead Pastor of Element Church in Cheyenne, WY. He received his degree in in Pastoral Ministry from Oklahoma Wesleyan University in 1997 and has been in full-time ministry since December of that year, serving as Lead Pastor of Element for the past 12 years. Jeff is committed to standing with LGBT+ people as the church navigates conversations of faith, sexuality, and gender. Jeff and his wife Sabrina have four children. ”

“John Wilson earned his Master of Practical Theology from Indiana Wesleyan University and serves as the Children’s Pastor at Element Church in Cheyenne, WY. In February 2019 he came out as a celibate, gay Christian to his congregation and was graciously and generously received. He hopes his testimony encourages churches to become safe places for LGBT+ people.”

ELEMENT CHURCH AFFILIATIONS

Both of the pastors participating in Revoice 2019 attended Wesleyan Universities however the church website does not list any affiliations for the church. The pastor Jeff Maness social media indicates Andy Stanley is a mentor .

https://twitter.com/jeffgmaness?lang=en

Replying to 

: Amazing day with three worship services: ” that’s awesome

SO WHAT ARE WE MISSING ?  LIVING OUT/ SAM ALLBERRY ACTUALLY ALTERED THE LANGUAGE OF THE 2018 “INCLUSION CHURCH AUDIT “WHY?

After a good deal of exposure and expressions of disgust by readers/listeners to the ERLC Family Conference last Fall- the Allberry/ Living Out Audit was changed to read”Church members share family time (in place of sharing children ). This public response clearly served as a reality check for some of the self absorbed leadership scripting the narrative and designing the audit. That is some progress to be reported and celebrated.

Revoice founder and Al Mohler / SBTS disciple Nate Collins has also aimed the radical LGBT Church Inclusion message at youth and the youth department of churches. This  was revealed to be part of two Revoice speakers work with “Side A ( fully affirming ) Side B ( claiming adherence to Celibacy or Mixed Orientation Marriages ) and Everything in Between ” ministry called LOVEboldly . Its “Devoted  Youth Conference” targeted youth and youth pastors in order to bypass senior staff and parents with the Inclusion message.

https://thirtypiecesofsilver.org/2018/07/07/beyond-revoice-part-1-recruiting-youth-pastors-targeting-your-teens/

REVOICE CORE INSPIRATION ALSO TARGETS YOUTH

Mark Yarhouse whose interfaith work with the American Psychological Association has helped developed the ideology behind both Allberry’s Living Out and Collins Revoice has also worked with LOVEboldly  and has targeted youth with his message .Yarhouse promoted Revoice 2018 but is now a keynote speaker at the 2019 Revoice event .

Understanding Sexual Identity: A Resource for Youth Ministry Paperback – October 14, 2013

 

“Today’s youth struggle with difficult questions of sexual identity. How can a youth worker offer wise care and counsel on such a controversial and confusing subject? Mark Yarhouse, director of the Institute for the Study of Sexual Identity, equips youth ministers so they can faithfully navigate the topic of sexual identity in a way that is honest, compassionate, and accessible.”

“Reframing the focus away from the culture wars, Yarhouse introduces readers to the developmental considerations in the formation of sexual identity―all of which occurs in the teen years.  He offers practical and helpful ways to think about homosexuality along with suggestions for talking with people who experience same-sex attraction. He also helps parents and youth volunteers learn to graciously respond to children and teens who struggle with questions of sexual identity, and discusses how youth ministry can become more relevant in the lives of youth who are navigating these issues.”

FORMER WHEATON LGBT ACTIVIST STAFFER JULIE ROGERS TARGETS YOUTH

Close friend and associate to both Yarhouse and Collins and former Wheaton staffer Julie Rogers has targeted the Christian youth audience with her activist LGBT message as well as she appeared with Yarhouse in a LOVEboldly youth conference several years ago.

 “Sexual Identity and the Youth Minister: Walking with LGBT Youth.”

Sexual Identity and the Youth Minister: Walking with LGBT Youth

Deep Dive by Mark Yarhouse and Julie Rogers at NYWC 2014 in Atlanta

 

REVOICE 2019 GOES DEEPER INTO THE FAMILY LIFE OF THE CHURCH PROMOTING GAY CHILDREN’S MINISTRY PASTOR .

Youth have been targeted with the LGBT+ message directly in our churches . However -not since the Living Out “Inclusion Church Audit” has the overt promotion of Same Sex Attracted /Celibate / LGBT+ Christians into the realm of children in our churches been promoted so boldly.

What are we missing?

Clearly many young parents in progressive “faith communities ” like Element Church feel very comfortable with the normalization of and portrayals by leadership of “LGBT+ Christianity ” in the eyes of their children. Still many more Christians in Biblically faithful churches and denominations like the SBC and PCA do not. It is likely some of the grandparents and older  leadership  in these progressive churches have been given good reason in their own experience with LGBT in their churches to sound a warning if the pressures of culture compliance were not so great .

Clearly some young progressive parents would feel the idea of not welcoming LGBT people into such pastoral positions to be crude and “victorian  principled” snobbishness and self righteousness. Yet the reality of ongoing child sex abuse in Catholic Church exposure /litigation /victimization has left a mark on older Christians as to the potential of harm to the most vulnerable in the churches.The secular media and the culture at large has certainly understood that welcoming homosexuals into the priesthood has not made Catholic institutions a “safe haven ” for children.

Is concern over the idea of placing a single person with suppressed homosexual desires in pastoral positions in the church not simply a matter of common sense? Why isn’t the first and final consideration that  the much higher /eternal weight is that it is historically counter to Biblical standards for leadership?

What of the recent and ongoing sexual abuse and decades long cover up in the Southern Baptist Convention reported recently by the Houston Chronicle ? Do we learn from the past or doom ourselves by politically driven policies that will assure more harm?

https://www.houstonchronicle.com/local/investigations/abuse-of-faith/

What can we learn if we  look to the secular realm -even in this age of the “Great LGBT+ Inclusion ” global social experiment? We need look no further than the Boy Scouts of America and it’s legal battles following the harmful realities of “Inclusion ” into leadership positions with children .

https://www.christianpost.com/news/boy-scouts-consider-bankruptcy-as-membership-plummets-cost-of-sex-abuse-lawsuits-mount.html

The cost to BSA financially is exceeded only in the cost of damage done to the most innocent of lives entrusted to the organizations care.For what ? To prove to the world and the media and to the activist organizations that they were inclusive. At what cost? To the lifelong harm of victims who just wanted to enjoy learning about nature and enjoy outdoor experiences with an organization with over a hundred history. Now politics or LGBT inclusion have been driving scouting and are driving another institution into the ground. The church ignores this reality its own peril and that of our children.

“A month after being slapped with a federal trademark lawsuit by the Girl Scouts of the United States of America, the Boy Scouts of America is considering bankruptcy as membership plummets and legal costs from defending itself against lawsuits alleging sexual abuse of boys mount.”

“Sources told The Wall Street Journal on Wednesday that the BSA hired law firm Sidley Austin LLP for assistance with a possible Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing.”

“And reacting to “news reports that will speculate about the BSA’s financial position” Wednesday, the BSA confirmed in a statement that it was “working with experts to explore all options available to ensure that the local and national programming of the Boy Scouts of America continues uninterrupted.”

“Chief Scout Executive Michael Surbaugh noted in the statement that while there were “no imminent actions or immediate decisions expected” the organization continues to examine the best way to manage a desire to carry out their mission while compensating victims of sexual abuse at the same time.”

“We have a social and moral responsibility to fairly compensate victims who suffered abuse during their time in Scouting, and we also have an obligation to carry out our mission to serve youth, families and local communities through our programs,” Surbaugh said.”

“Throughout our history we have taken proactive steps to help victims heal and prevent future abuse. I want to stress that at no time in our history have we knowingly allowed a sexual predator to work with youth, and we always seek to act swiftly when alerted to abuse allegations,” he added.”

“The BSA is one of the largest Scouting organizations in the U.S. as well as one of the largest youth organizations in the country with more than 2.4 million youth participants and nearly 1 million adult volunteers.”

“As the organization has shifted toward more inclusive membership policies such as lifting its ban on openly gay members in 2014, allowing openly gay adults to be scout leaders, then allowing trans-identified boys in 2017, they have courted controversy.”

ACTIVISM IS AS ACTIVISM DOES .AVOIDING STUPIDITY SHOULD BE A NO BRAINER !

The Bible speaks of diverse callings and gifts in the Body of Christ but it does not speak of “inclusion” of those who identify by admittedly evil desires and espouse the mere denial of indulging them. The church is allowing itself to be  forced to do so by political and cultural winds of social change . These winds are driven by the same activist climate and forces (and likely the same funding) we find in the culture. The church is now faced with the possibility of paying avery high price for its appeasement of the LGBT+ faith agenda . Christians have seen the confusion and contradictions to Biblical holiness and qualifications that this movement embodies but have they considered the ultimate cost ? Are we prepared to surrender our children on the pagan altars  of “Inclusion”?

Romans 12

Living Sacrifices to God

I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.

Serve God with Spiritual Gifts

For I say, through the grace given to me, to everyone who is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think soberly, as God has dealt to each one a measure of faith. For as we have many members in one body, but all the members do not have the same function, so we, being many, are one body in Christ, and individually members of one another. Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, let us prophesy in proportion to our faith; or ministry, let us use it in our ministering; he who teaches, in teaching; he who exhorts, in exhortation; he who gives, with liberality; he who leads, with diligence; he who shows mercy, with cheerfulness.

Behave Like a Christian

Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good. “

 

Revoice 2019 Workshops

By Rev. Thomas Littleton                                                                                             4/18/2019

Revoice 2018 was  a major story and raised many concerns in the Evangelical Community  because of its new/ radical language and the leadership for it being provided by recent graduates of both the Southern Baptist (SBTS)and Presbyterian Church of America’s  (CTS) flagship seminaries.

The new web site updates for the Revoice 2019 event are up and open for public view . Here a just a few for consideration . Little commentary is needed .

https://revoice.us/

Coming out as a gay pastor

What does it look like for a church not only to embrace gay people in their congregation but also to include them on their staff? Jeff and John share from their experience of creating a church culture where John was able to come out to their congregation as a celibate, gay pastor. Together, they reflect on the principles and practical steps that led up to John’s coming out and the spiritual impact this has had on them and their church.

Queer Culture: Missiology and Contextualization

In the beginning, God created human beings in his image and commanded them to, among other things, create culture (Genesis 1:26-29). At the end of time, diverse worshippers from around the globe and throughout time will bring “the honor and glory of the nations”, and their cultures, into the New Jerusalem (Revelation 21:24-27). In the meantime, followers of Christ are faced with the task of approaching every human culture with wisdom and hope, discerning what is to be rejected, redeemed, or received with joy (Acts 17:16-34). When we consider queer culture through this biblical lens, what “honor and glory” do we see? How might God, through the beauty already present in queer culture and the faithful witness of his people, enrich the Church and bring more people to Himself?

Non-Traditional Families Are Biblical Families

What does family really look like in the Bible? Contrary to most contemporary teaching, family goes well beyond a dad, mom, 2.5 kids and a picket fence. In this workshop, we will briefly examine non-traditional families in scripture and talk about how non-straight Christians can find family in a variety of ways. From fostering to adoption to community living, family is available to us all.

Becoming Churches where Gay Christians can Thrive in Celibacy or a Mixed-Orientation Marriage

Even if churches speak carefully about sexual ethics and offer gay Christians compassionate pastoral care, gay Christians often don’t have an answer to their biggest question: How will I find family? The Church has historically offered Christian marriage between a man and a woman or singleness for the sake of the kingdom as the two paths for stewarding our sexualities. But, are those paths currently working for gay Christians? Are our churches places where gay Christians can actually thrive in either of those vocations with reasonable effort? This workshop will explore how our churches can become places where gay Christians thrive in celibacy or a mixed-orientation marriage. We will explore practical steps pastors can take to teach what the Bible has to say about celibacy and marriage, help teens and young adults discern God’s call for their life, support gay Christians as they step into celibacy or a mixed-orientation marriage, and continue to celebrate their callings.

The Intersection of Race and Sexuality: God’s Call to Humility, Love, Justice, and Service

The call to Christian living demands that we pick up our cross, deny ourselves, and follow him. This is no small ask when you mix the hurt, pain, anger, and bitterness of being a sexual minority with being a racial and/or gender minority. It is indelibly even more difficult as a racial minority feeling underrepresented or even having the sexual minority experience  compared to that of your own. Regardless of race and sexual orientation, we have an undeniable call to make Jesus preeminent in our lives and ministries, for the common good and justice for all.

On Being Sisters, Brothers, and Friends to Sexual Minorities

How can straight Christians who hold a historic biblical view of sexual ethics provide much-needed support and encouragement for sexual minorities in our churches and communities? In this workshop, we’ll share stories of giving and receiving this type of “allyship.” Together, we’ll reflect on what these stories can teach us about the barriers and opportunities that exist for straight Christians willing to risk entering a difficult arena for the sake of their gay, lesbian, bisexual, and same-sex-attracted sisters and brothers. We’ll grapple with our own experiences, hopes, and fears, and wrestle with the question of how God might call all of us (gay and straight and everything else) into risky, unapologetic love for others.

My Journey to Integrity: How an Ordinary Guy Came to Understand He Can Be Gay and Christian

Do you ever wonder how one person can be present in two worlds? How can we hold together two ideas that seem to be opposed to each other? How do we live in integrity when presented with such a challenge? As a lifelong and committed Christian who also knew he was gay, Scott Herr would often ask those same questions. He never knew the answers until the Lord helped him to understand. In this workshop, Scott will share his story of coming to understand how to live in a place of integrity as both a Christian and a gay man.

Gay Girl, Full House: Living in Christian Community as a Nonstraight Person

Two years ago, Meg packed her bags for a cross-country move. As a young Christ-follower discerning a call to celibacy, what could it possibly look like to find love, commitment, and purpose in this new chapter?

Meg began studying historic expressions of Christian community—and was inspired to try something counter-cultural. In a faith-filled experiment, she signed a lease with a family of four and two other singles committed to following Christ together.

Join Meg to consider a biblical vision for spiritual family that is radically inclusive, uncomfortably diverse, and surprisingly practical.

Fighting for Fullness of Life: Emotional Health as Sexual Minorities (for Men)

God created us to live lives of passion, purpose, and delight, but shame, fear and loneliness too often rob us of this fullness of life.  These two workshops—one for men, another for women—will discuss the unique causes and consequences of shame, fear and loneliness for sexual minority believers, while exploring ways to combat these experiences and live life to the full as God intended.

Life after Spiritual Abuse

Healthy relationships support thriving and flourishing. Abusive, neglectful relationships crush the spirit. Though abuse is painful and can be crippling, it doesn’t have to have have the last word. This workshop will be a place where we talk about the nature and characteristics of spiritual abuse, specifically as it has been inflicted on LGBTQ+ individuals, offer hope and guidance for those seeking to find their way out of spiritually abusive dynamics or recover from previous abuse.

Sexual Minorities and Ministry: “Already” Kingdom Living in the “Not Yet” World

There is a lot of discussion in the Church today about ministry to sexual minorities, but what does ministry with sexual minorities look like? How can we provide helpful pastoral care while encouraging sexual minorities to discover ways in which they too can love and serve in their churches? What role is there for the unique experiences and gifts that sexual minorities bring to the table? How do we live in the difficulty that comes from being gay and Christian while serving our fellow brothers and sisters in Christ as a living testaments of the work of the Holy Spirit?

Join Stephen and Christina—who are both actively involved in fostering supportive community for sexual minority Christians in the St. Louis area—as we discuss a community-based ministry model that provides compassionate, biblically-based care to sexual minorities (the “not yet” reality of the world we live in) while also encouraging and equipping sexual minorities for their own ministries and callings in the Church and world (“already” Kingdom living).

Mission and Sexuality

In 2 Cor. 5:20, Paul says “Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God.” What does it mean to be ambassadors to the LGBT+ community in 2019 and beyond? What does it mean for those of us who experience same-sex attraction to be ambassadors for Christ? We will think together strategically, missionally, and biblically about these questions, so that you will leave with practical ideas to implement in your context.

Parents and Families Focused Interest Track

When LGBT+ loved ones come out, parents can experience shock. Fear and grief can disable their initial reaction. Emotions erupt. Hurtful words spill. Relationships can become disconnected. Meanwhile, in the church, LGBT+ people often face impossible hurdles and suspicion about their faith. One courageous disclosure can be met—at home and at church—with a response that communicates, “We don’t understand you.” Bill’s resource, Guiding Families, offers a relationally honoring, biblically sound best practice care plan. Learn from other parents who were surveyed on insights they have gained walking this journey ahead of you. This focused interest track is designed for every pastor, every parent, and all who care for LGBT+ loved ones.

Stranger Things Have Happened! — Exploring God’s Goodness in Mixed Orientation Marriage

On one hand, mixed-orientation marriages are just like other marriages. On the other hand, they provide an opportunity to explore God’s goodness and faithfulness through unique joys and struggles while bucking cultural norms. In this workshop, we will share our story; the gifts, the laughter, and the tears we have experienced over the last 24 years of marriage.  We look forward to your questions. And we will explore the unique gifts mixed-orientation marriage bring to the church and broader community.

My Story Is Sacred

They say that testimony is the most powerful way to move hearts and bring people to Jesus. But sometimes we share our stories and they’re retold by others in a way that might not fully capture the heart of our struggles and how God has been working in us and through us as gay/SSA Christians.

How can we authentically share our stories, without them being appropriated, in ways that help churches and families understand and love us better in our unique journeys? Join Ray for a workshop on how to write and tell your testimony in a way that promotes compassion, challenge, and call to action.

 

Sexual Minorities and Ministry: “Already” Kingdom Living in the “Not Yet” World

There is a lot of discussion in the Church today about ministry to sexual minorities, but what does ministry with sexual minorities look like? How can we provide helpful pastoral care while encouraging sexual minorities to discover ways in which they too can love and serve in their churches? What role is there for the unique experiences and gifts that sexual minorities bring to the table? How do we live in the difficulty that comes from being gay and Christian while serving our fellow brothers and sisters in Christ as a living testaments of the work of the Holy Spirit?

Join Stephen and Christina—who are both actively involved in fostering supportive community for sexual minority Christians in the St. Louis area—as we discuss a community-based ministry model that provides compassionate, biblically-based care to sexual minorities (the “not yet” reality of the world we live in) while also encouraging and equipping sexual minorities for their own ministries and callings in the Church and world (“already” Kingdom living).

Loneliness and celibacy: A death sentence or an opportunity?

Many people today would say that celibacy is not a sustainable path for anyone, let alone gay, lesbian, bisexual, and same-sex attracted Christians. But when it comes to research, we know very little about the experience of celibacy for Christian sexual minorities. Stemming from a qualitative study done by the presenter, this workshop aims to shed light on the experience of celibate Christians with same-sex desires, and identify helpful/unhelpful coping strategies that individuals have turned to when faced with loneliness. This workshop will also make space for dialogue and sharing insights about managing loneliness. Is singleness a death sentence? Is there a viable pathway forward where you can thrive, even if marriage is not in your future? What would that even look like? Together, let’s find out.

Ecstasy in Celibacy

Contemporary American culture—very much including Christian culture—finds it hard to understand celibacy as anything other than a deprivation. And lots of us also experience celibacy as mostly deprivation, rather than an arena for love. In this workshop, I’ll look at Christian history, theology, and art, in order to suggest ways in which celibacy offers unique forms of openness to love, intimacy with God, and witness to Heaven. I’ll also share my own story of discovering beauty in celibacy even though I never wanted it—if celibacy is a “gift,” I’ve finally stopped looking for the returns counter.

Experiencing Intimacy with God & Others as the Antidote for Shame in Your Sexuality

Experiencing shame surrounding your sexuality isn’t a ‘maybe’, it’s a given. So how do we wrestle well with being ‘out’ in our faith communities even when we experience shame messages, misunderstanding, and loneliness? Ty will give real life examples from his journey and those he has counseled as to what it looks like own your sexuality (even the messy parts) and show up in relationships w/ God & others—being known, experiencing intimacy, and walking free as a son or daughter of God.

Learning to Understand, Support, and be Enriched by Celibate Gay Christians

This workshop will discuss clinical and life applications of the new research of 300 celibate gay Christians described in the book Costly Obedience: Listening to and Learning from Celibate Gay Christians. We will focus on strategies and insights that mental health counselors, pastors, and family members should know as they engage in support and discussions with Christian sexual minorities who are considering or pursuing the life of celibacy. The diversity of this population in terms of their definition of celibacy and decisions to pursue mixed-orientation marriage as a part of same-sex celibacy commitment will also be discussed.

( This workshop is by Mark Yarhouse research partner : Dr. Olya Zaporozhets is an associate professor in the School of Psychology & Counseling at Regent University and is a Director of Research at the Institute for the Study of Sexual Identity. She is a co-author of the book Costly Obedience: Listening and Learning from Celibate Gay Christians that included the survey of about 300 celibate gay Christians and interviews of people who serve them as families.  She has also directed the analysis of qualitative data from 200 interviews of Christian parents whose children came out as LGBTQ, which led to several publications and national conference presentations.)

REVOICE  2019 REVELATIONS

The above workshop titles and descriptions do provide a window into the goals of Revoice 2019 and into the  “LGBT Lens ” through which the conference is presenting it’s views related to the church and LGBT issues.  There are more on the Revoice website and likely more information will be added by the organizers .

 

WHY THIS EVENT AND THE MOVEMENT BEHIND IT MATTERS TO THE CHURCH

Revoice a movement and not a one time event . The assertions made in the presentations here and in 2018 are based upon the presumed existence of homosexual or LGBT “Sexual Orientation ” which is derived in large part from the American Psychological Association and the interfaith /religious studies for applying there conclusions in Counseling across the broad spectrum of faiths. The research by and for Christian application which is developed by Mark Yarhouse and his associates is outlined in the above paragraph and is admittedly very limited in the number of people involved and begins from both APA and an interfaith perspectives . Its most objective conclusions would still not be faithfully applied to a Biblical understanding of faith and Christian conversion based upon repentance and faith and a new identity based solely on Christ indwelling Spirit in the heart of a person who is ,in the eyes of historic Christian faith , a “New Creation ” where old things are passed away and ALL things have become new. II Corinthians 5:17.

The Revoice movement and others like it are promoting something the Bible does not provide classification  for or confirm the existence of . There is no Biblical basis for LGBT, “Queer “, Gay or Transgender Christianity.

Whether Christians today are willing to accept of deny these new terms as faithful to Biblical salvation is not yet clear. What is now clear in the 2019 Revoice conference is Mark Yarhouse presence as a keynote speaker and the continued assertion across the workshop topics – that Gay or LGBT Christianity  is being  promoted to the mainstream Evangelical community . Also it is clear that these influences behind Revoice have deeply impacted our seminaires .