Discussion Board 3
Casey Joe Ritzmann
As a developing mature conservative Christian in our society today, at this exact point in time, as the right and left, conservatism and liberalism ideologies continue to drift farther apart, I find it increasingly paramount to keep my eyes on the Cross. God’s perfect plan continues to play out, and we are living in such difficult and painful times. At times I found myself thinking Satan was winning, witnessing as much hate coming from the far right as one can see from the far left, and finding myself jerked back and forth, the Enemy continuously at work. Then, I find myself grounded once again, knowing that Jesus our mighty King has already won on the cross, and this is all part of God’s mighty redeeming plan for us sinners.
From what I surmise from this weeks reading on homosexuality, the authors have taken the “just right of center” approach, even though they don’t explicitly state that exact position. What they do clearly state is they believe in heterosexual marriage, “In our view, the Bible solely and consistently refers to marriage as a covenantal (unconditionally committed) relationship between a man and a woman” (Balswick & Balswich, 2008, p. 126). The “just right of center” position represents the view that homosexuals may or may not be responsible for their orientation, however they are held accountable for “any acting out of their homosexual impulses” (Balswick & Balswick, 2008, p. 123). I firmly concur with the author’s stance on the topic of homosexuality, and neither think it is “too liberal or conservative,” however believe it lines up with proper Biblical interpretation and reflects the love of Jesus Christ. This sentence by Balswick and Balswick (2008) spoke boldly to me in the reading, “Homosexuals, bisexuals, and heterosexuals must strive to find a wholeness in their lives before God in a less-than-ideal world” (p. 135). “None is righteous, no, not one!” (Romans 3:10, English Standard Version).
I respect the work of the “ex gay” movement and reparative ministries such as Desert Stream and Living Waters. The suicide, disease, and addiction rates among the homosexual population is disturbing, and for a ministry to be devoted to helping a homosexual change their behaviors and align their lives with God’s will is crucial, especially for youth. Unfortunately, proponents on the far left seem to continue to win victories and push their agenda, breeding a discourse for hate. Robinson and Spivey (2015) conclude that, “In the U.S., the ex-gay movement has been successful in persuading large groups of people that LGBT people do not deserve civil rights because their identities are malleable, unlike allegedly immutable characteristics such as race” (p. 897). In perusing through this article by Robinson and Spivey one can just feel their disdain for Christianity and the efforts of the reparative movement.
I liken the “choice” factor of homosexuality with my own wounds of addiction. I did not choose to be born an addict or alcoholic. However, I had a genetic predisposition to it and was raised by two abusive and neglectful alcoholic/drug addicts. I did however, after becoming a young man, choose to continue in the behavior for a very long time, living a torturous and painful life very far from God. By God’s mercy and grace, and my faithfulness to Him through trials and temptations, He has redeemed me from the grips of addiction, and I am a new creation. I believe this can be the same for a person who is born homosexual without a choice in the matter.
Balswick, J.K., & Balswick, J.O. (2008). Authentic human sexuality: An integrated Christian approach (2nd ed.). Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press.
Robinson, C., & Spivey, S. (2015). Putting lesbians in their place: Deconstructing ex-gay discourses of female homosexuality in a global context. Social Sciences, 4(3), 879-908. MDPI AG. Retrieved from: http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/socsci4030879.