To The Christian Who Hates The LGBTQ Community, Homosexuality Is Just One Sin

To The Christian Who Hates The LGBTQ Community, Homosexuality Is Just One Sin

While I stand with you in my disagreement against the sin that is being committed by the LGBTQ community, I stand against those who utilize their disagreements to fuel a malicious mindset.
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Prior to reading this article, I would like to make it as clear as possible to you, the reader, that my goal in writing this is not to support or promote homosexuality, bisexuality, or gender reassignment. I am writing this to bring forward a flaw within the Church in regards to how we address the LGBTQ community. Thank you for taking the time to read. - Sam

On June 26, 2015, the US Supreme Court ruled that the fundamental right to marry is guaranteed to same-sex couples by both the Due Process Clause and the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution. This ruling polarized the nation, sending any and all into a political, religious, and moral battle.

Those within the Christian community did not hold back from speaking out against the new law that directly contradicted their beliefs. For some, this landmark case served as an opportunity to voice not only opinions but hatred. Hatred towards not only homosexuals but all within the LGBTQ community.

As I stated at the beginning of this article, I do not support homosexuality, bisexuality, or gender reassignment. However, I will stand firmly in my belief that it is our job as the Church to love the LGBTQ community to the best of our ability, regardless of our disagreement with their sexual orientation or identification.

Homosexuality is a sin. But guess what, so is pornography addiction, fornication, adultery, and a multitude of other sexual temptations that Christians face on a daily basis. While I stand with you in my disagreement against the sin that is being committed by the LGBTQ community, I stand against those who utilize their disagreements to fuel a malicious mindset towards the people within this community.

When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, “Let anyone of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.” - John 8:7

We were all born sinners. There’s a wide variety of sin that plagues mankind today. All of humanity struggles with lying, cheating, stealing, cursing, idolatry, and many more sins. Homosexuality is one sin. In the same way that I struggle with idolizing my education or sports, a gay man or woman struggles with feeling inevitably attracted to the same sex.

The issue within the Church comes from the fact that we, as the Body of Christ, have made it our own moral duty to rank or classify sins as better or worse than others. Typically, we consider sins that are more rare to be inherently worse such as murder, pedophilia, adultery, and yes, homosexuality.

However, the narrative we ought to follow is given to us in the word of God.

Matthew 6:14-15 says “For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.”

Beloved, who are we to judge and condemn? For we are called to forgive and love as Christ did.

“But God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” -Romans 5:8

We are all children of God, and whether you like it or not, that makes the lesbian, gay, bi, transgender, or queer people in your midst. Not only your peers but your brothers and sisters.

1 John 4:20 proclaims that “If anyone says, ‘I love God,’ and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen.”

Many Christians claim to know and practice this, yet they continue to slander, berate, and condemn those within the LGBTQ community simply because their sin is different.

I cannot stand with a man who is homophobic but remains content to lust after other women in his own relationship. I cannot stand with a woman who despises transgenders, yet complacent in her battle with pornography. We must put an end to holding others to a standard greater than what we hold ourselves to.

I challenge you to be the Christian who actually seeks these people out. Not simply to save them or shove bible knowledge down their throats, but to love and care for them. Not to belittle them, but to speak life and encouragement over them.

Your words either hurt or they heal. Whether you like it or not, your words carry weight and have the power to evoke a multitude of emotions.

Jesus tells us in Matthew 12:37 that “for by your words you will be justified, and by your words, you will be condemned.”

Let’s be justified by our words, beloved.

Let’s choose to be the hands and feet of Jesus that love these people for exactly who they are, in the same that Christ chose to love you.

Cover Image Credit: Cole Hutson

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An Open Letter To Democrats From A Millennial Republican

Why being a Republican doesn't mean I'm inhuman.
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Dear Democrats,

I have a few things to say to you — all of you.

You probably don't know me. But you think you do. Because I am a Republican.

Gasp. Shock. Horror. The usual. I know it all. I hear it every time I come out of the conservative closet here at my liberal arts university.

SEE ALSO: What I Mean When I Say I'm A Young Republican

“You're a Republican?" people ask, saying the word in the same tone that Draco Malfoy says “Mudblood."

I know that not all Democrats feel about Republicans this way. Honestly, I can't even say for certain that most of them do. But in my experience, saying you're a Republican on a liberal college campus has the same effect as telling someone you're a child molester.

You see, in this day and age, with leaders of the Republican Party standing up and spouting unfortunately ridiculous phrases like “build a wall," and standing next to Kim Davis in Kentucky after her release, we Republicans are given an extreme stereotype. If you're a Republican, you're a bigot. You don't believe in marriage equality. You don't believe in racial equality. You don't believe in a woman's right to choose. You're extremely religious and want to impose it on everyone else.

Unfortunately, stereotypes are rooted in truth. There are some people out there who really do think these things and feel this way. And it makes me mad. The far right is so far right that they make the rest of us look bad. They make sure we aren't heard. Plenty of us are fed up with their theatrics and extremism.

For those of us brave enough to wear the title “Republican" in this day and age, as millennials, it's different. Many of us don't agree with these brash ideas. I'd even go as far as to say that most of us don't feel this way.

For me personally, being a Republican doesn't even mean that I automatically vote red.

When people ask me to describe my political views, I usually put it pretty simply. “Conservative, but with liberal social views."

“Oh," they say, “so you're a libertarian."

“Sure," I say. But that's the thing. I'm not really a libertarian.

Here's what I believe:

I believe in marriage equality. I believe in feminism. I believe in racial equality. I don't want to defund Planned Parenthood. I believe in birth control. I believe in a woman's right to choose. I believe in welfare. I believe more funds should be allocated to the public school system.

Then what's the problem? Obviously, I'm a Democrat then, right?

Wrong. Because I have other beliefs too.

Yes, I believe in the right to choose — but I'd always hope that unless a pregnancy would result in the bodily harm of the woman, that she would choose life. I believe in welfare, but I also believe that our current system is broken — there are people who don't need it receiving it, and others who need it that cannot access it.

I believe in capitalism. I believe in the right to keep and bear arms, because I believe we have a people crisis on our hands, not a gun crisis. Contrary to popular opinion, I do believe in science. I don't believe in charter schools. I believe in privatizing as many things as possible. I don't believe in Obamacare.

Obviously, there are other topics on the table. But, generally speaking, these are the types of things we millennial Republicans get flack for. And while it is OK to disagree on political beliefs, and even healthy, it is NOT OK to make snap judgments about me as a person. Identifying as a Republican does not mean I am the same as Donald Trump.

Just because I am a Republican, does not mean you know everything about me. That does not give you the right to make assumptions about who I am as a person. It is not OK for you to group me with my stereotype or condemn me for what I feel and believe. And for a party that prides itself on being so open-minded, it shocks me that many of you would be so judgmental.

So I ask you to please, please, please reexamine how you view Republicans. Chances are, you're missing some extremely important details. If you only hang out with people who belong to your own party, chances are you're missing out on great people. Because, despite what everyone believes, we are not our stereotype.

Sincerely,

A millennial Republican

Cover Image Credit: NEWSWORK.ORG

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Why The Idea Of 'No Politics At The Dinner Table' Takes Place And Why We Should Avoid It

When did having a dialogue become so rare?

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Why has the art of civilized debate and conversation become unheard of in daily life? Why is it considered impolite to talk politics with coworkers and friends? Expressing ideas and discussing different opinions should not be looked down upon.

I have a few ideas as to why this is our current societal norm.

1. Politics is personal.

Your politics can reveal a lot about who you are. Expressing these (sometimes controversial) opinions may put you in a vulnerable position. It is possible for people to draw unfair conclusions from one viewpoint you hold. This fosters a fear of judgment when it comes to our political beliefs.

Regardless of where you lie on the spectrum of political belief, there is a world of assumption that goes along with any opinion. People have a growing concern that others won't hear them out based on one belief.

As if a single opinion could tell you all that you should know about someone. Do your political opinions reflect who you are as a person? Does it reflect your hobbies? Your past?

The question becomes "are your politics indicative enough of who you are as a person to warrant a complete judgment?"

Personally, I do not think you would even scratch the surface of who I am just from knowing my political identification.

2. People are impolite.

The politics themselves are not impolite. But many people who wield passionate, political opinion act impolite and rude when it comes to those who disagree.

The avoidance of this topic among friends, family, acquaintances and just in general, is out of a desire to 'keep the peace'. Many people have friends who disagree with them and even family who disagree with them. We justify our silence out of a desire to avoid unpleasant situations.

I will offer this: It might even be better to argue with the ones you love and care about, because they already know who you are aside from your politics, and they love you unconditionally (or at least I would hope).

We should be having these unpleasant conversations. And you know what? They don't even need to be unpleasant! Shouldn't we be capable of debating in a civilized manner? Can't we find common ground?

I attribute the loss of political conversation in daily life to these factors. 'Keeping the peace' isn't an excuse. We should be discussing our opinions constantly and we should be discussing them with those who think differently.

Instead of discouraging political conversation, we should be encouraging kindness and understanding. That's how we will avoid the unpleasantness that these conversations sometimes bring.

By avoiding them altogether, we are doing our youth a disservice because they are not being exposed to government, law, and politics, and they are not learning to deal with people and ideas that they don't agree with.

Next Thanksgiving, talk politics at the table.

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