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"Anonymous asked: Sorry I dunno how else to put this but.. how do you manage to be hopeful about stuff? I try, but I’ve been spending the last couple months coming clean with myself that I’ve always liked and wanted to express myself femininely (i’m amab) and living out what makes me feel like myself in secret (stuck in a conservative family), and I just.. It feels like how can things ever get better when I and my family and ex-church feel like we’re in alternate universes with different languages. I’ve learned the bible isn’t “clear” on this at all, how all these arguments are terrifyingly similar to when people tried to use the bible to defend genocide and slavery, how good trees can’t bear bad fruit and the fruit of the religious right is vile. I feel closer to Jesus the more I embrace myself as trans, but everyone around me sounds alien and strange in what they think the bible ‘says’. I just struggle to picture a more real, loving Kingdom being realized in my lifetime."

Using the Bible as a handbook on gender identity makes as much sense as using it as a handbook on astronomy. Just as those who wrote the Biblical texts had no concept of the science that would prove the earth actually revolves around the sun, they had no concept of gender identity.

So like Desmond Tutu says, there are things in the Bible that we shouldn’t accept. Sometimes people get things wrong. That doesn’t mean that God is wrong, just that people can be wrong in discerning God’s will. One way I discern God’s will is by seeing if someone’s words or actions help or harm people; good tree bears good fruit.

We still have a long way to go when it comes to religious inclusion. The best thing you can do is find a church that is welcoming and affirming. No church is perfect, but welcoming and affirming churches promise to walk in love and do their best to understand you and celebrate you. -EM

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Thanks both of you. I don’t get the chance to talk about this much so I didn’t know people felt so strongly about it. But I feel like we limit our understanding of God when we say that only some are deserving of God’s grace. 
Are Native people who never heard the name of Jesus deserving of God’s grace? How about those who killed people in war? What about a devout Hindu who worships Krishna and does good?
This is important to the conversation about LGBT religious inclusion because we’re always being judged and told by religious conservatives that God will condemn us to hell. It invites deeper questions as to whether a loving God would condemn any of God’s subjects to eternal damnation. 
The Christian faith is as much about questioning as it is about absolute truths. So we should take the time to pray, meditate, and try to come to better understandings.
There is plenty of room for healthy disagreement. All I ask is that we remember that God is still speaking, still revealing things to us. Jesus told the disciples that there were things he wanted to say but they could not bear it. So He sent a Comforter, the Holy Spirit, who continues to guide us in God’s truth. 
None of us have all the answers, but let us seek them together in unity.

Thanks both of you. I don’t get the chance to talk about this much so I didn’t know people felt so strongly about it. But I feel like we limit our understanding of God when we say that only some are deserving of God’s grace. 

Are Native people who never heard the name of Jesus deserving of God’s grace? How about those who killed people in war? What about a devout Hindu who worships Krishna and does good?

This is important to the conversation about LGBT religious inclusion because we’re always being judged and told by religious conservatives that God will condemn us to hell. It invites deeper questions as to whether a loving God would condemn any of God’s subjects to eternal damnation. 

The Christian faith is as much about questioning as it is about absolute truths. So we should take the time to pray, meditate, and try to come to better understandings.

There is plenty of room for healthy disagreement. All I ask is that we remember that God is still speaking, still revealing things to us. Jesus told the disciples that there were things he wanted to say but they could not bear it. So He sent a Comforter, the Holy Spirit, who continues to guide us in God’s truth. 

None of us have all the answers, but let us seek them together in unity.

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theradicalweirdo replied to your post “jepartrick replied to your post: anonymous said:I want to believe … …”

what’s conditionalism?

Conditionalism is the belief that immortality is granted to those who follow Jesus Christ.

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Anonymous said: I want to believe what you say about Hell, but can it be backed up by Scripture?

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Some scriptures that point to Universalism, the belief that God will save all persons, are Matthew 18:14, Luke 3:6, John 3:17, John 12:32, John 12:47, Romans 8:38-9, 1 Timothy 2:3–4, and 1 Timothy 4:9–10.

Pope Francis also suggested salvation for all persons:

“The Lord has redeemed all of us, all of us, with the Blood of Christ: all of us, not just Catholics. Everyone! ‘Father, the atheists?’ Even the atheists. Everyone! And this Blood makes us children of God of the first class! We are created children in the likeness of God and the Blood of Christ has redeemed us all! And we all have a duty to do good. And this commandment for everyone to do good, I think, is a beautiful path towards peace. If we, each doing our own part, if we do good to others, if we meet there, doing good, and we go slowly, gently, little by little, we will make that culture of encounter: we need that so much. We must meet one another doing good. ‘But I don’t believe, Father, I am an atheist!’ But do good: we will meet one another there.”

In addition to Trinitarian Universalism, I also believe in Panentheism, which holds that God is in all of nature and infinitely extends beyond it. Ephesians 4:6 says God is over all, through all, and in all. So if God is in all and all is sustained by God, how could God destroy anything God has created?

Many Christian leaders have struggled with this idea. I’m persuaded that since God is Love, God would not desire that any of us should perish. And I am convinced without a doubt that all persons will be reconciled with the Creator. 

Consequently, I also am convinced that the message of God’s love has reached others through different religions and different channels. The Hindus say there are many paths leading up the same hill. The only foolish person is the one at the bottom running to tell everyone else their path is wrong. So while I’m committed to Christianity as the primary way I choose to seek God, I respect all other paths. 

Lastly, if you’re just going to Church as an insurance against the possibility of eternal damnation, you’re going for all the wrong reasons. You can’t be scared into loving someone. We must love Jesus because He first loved us. —Enrique

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Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu: Oppression of gays is ‘new Apartheid’

The Most Rev. Desmond Tutu explains why he cannot stand on the sidelines as LGBT people struggle at the hands of their oppressors. “God sits there and weeps,” he remarked, “because God is saying ‘do you know what? You are all my children.’”

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gaychristian:

If you’re struggling as an LGBT Christian and need someone to talk to about your faith and orientation or gender identity/expression, talk to @gaychristianofficial on Kik.

gaychristian:

If you’re struggling as an LGBT Christian and need someone to talk to about your faith and orientation or gender identity/expression, talk to @gaychristianofficial on Kik.

(via gaychristian)

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believe-out-loud:

Yesterday, a Colorado state judge ruled the state’s amendment forbidding same-sex marriage to be unconstitutional! And the church said “AMEN!” :-)
Read More

believe-out-loud:

Yesterday, a Colorado state judge ruled the state’s amendment forbidding same-sex marriage to be unconstitutional! And the church said “AMEN!” :-)

Read More

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RUSSIAN ORTHODOX PRIEST: WORLD CUP AN ‘ABOMINATION’
Looks like someone is a little bitter that his home country didn’t win a single World Cup game. So he attacked the World Cup in an op-ed. Look at those football players gaying it up with their flamboyant shoes and wild hair styles. 
That’s all you’ve got? Just be sure not to gay up Sunday service with Tchaikovsky's music! 
Tchaikovsky’s All Night Vigil here. 

RUSSIAN ORTHODOX PRIEST: WORLD CUP AN ‘ABOMINATION’

Looks like someone is a little bitter that his home country didn’t win a single World Cup game. So he attacked the World Cup in an op-ed. Look at those football players gaying it up with their flamboyant shoes and wild hair styles. 

That’s all you’ve got? Just be sure not to gay up Sunday service with Tchaikovsky's music! 

Tchaikovsky’s All Night Vigil here. 

(Source: thenewcivilrightsmovement.com)

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TWO SETBACKS FOR LGBT EQUAL RIGHTS IN THE USA
Mississippi’s Queer Jim Crow law (Religious Freedom Restoration Act) is now in effect. Any business owner can refuse service to LGBT people by claiming their religious views conflict with the business transaction. Still some municipalities are challenging this law, and some businesses are affirming that they welcome everyone. 
Also, Major LGBT and Civil Rights Organizations are dropping support for the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, a bill that would bar discrimination in the workplace. The National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders (GLAD), Lambda Legal, the National Center for Lesbian Rights (NCLR), Pride At Work, and the Transgender Law Center no longer support the watered-down bill with its broad religious exemptions. Only The Human Rights Campaign continues to support ENDA.
Lastly, the President is still preparing an executive order barring discrimination against current or prospective LGBT federal contractors. Catholic Charities and the others crying for religious exemptions are now joined by Rick Warren. The religious exemption would water down the executive order and render it useless.
After the Supreme Court’s decision that the religiously affiliated for-profit Hobby Lobby doesn’t have to provide employee contraception, LGBT advocates feared The Employment Non-Discrimination Act would create more harm than good if passed. The bill had no chance of passing through the current House of Representatives at any rate. 
We fight on. -GCI

TWO SETBACKS FOR LGBT EQUAL RIGHTS IN THE USA

Mississippi’s Queer Jim Crow law (Religious Freedom Restoration Act) is now in effect. Any business owner can refuse service to LGBT people by claiming their religious views conflict with the business transaction. Still some municipalities are challenging this law, and some businesses are affirming that they welcome everyone. 

Also, Major LGBT and Civil Rights Organizations are dropping support for the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, a bill that would bar discrimination in the workplace. The National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders (GLAD), Lambda Legal, the National Center for Lesbian Rights (NCLR), Pride At Work, and the Transgender Law Center no longer support the watered-down bill with its broad religious exemptions. Only The Human Rights Campaign continues to support ENDA.

Lastly, the President is still preparing an executive order barring discrimination against current or prospective LGBT federal contractors. Catholic Charities and the others crying for religious exemptions are now joined by Rick Warren. The religious exemption would water down the executive order and render it useless.

After the Supreme Court’s decision that the religiously affiliated for-profit Hobby Lobby doesn’t have to provide employee contraception, LGBT advocates feared The Employment Non-Discrimination Act would create more harm than good if passed. The bill had no chance of passing through the current House of Representatives at any rate.

We fight on. -GCI

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Dear right-wing gayophobic Christian parents of America:
Will you please stop it now with the being purposefully ignorant? Just stop being crazy right now. If you love what the Bible says, love all of that the Bible says. Learn about gay people. Learn about LGBT-affirming Christians. Learn about Christian gay people.
Just … you know:learn.Open up. Imagine the Holy Spirit reallyisinside of you, and reallyistalking to you, just like Jesus said would happen. Just like is happening with you right now.
Do you really think that’s the Holy Spirit telling you that God has a problem with people being gay?
If you listen just a little bit harder, don’t you think that voice sounds an awful lot likeyourvoice, rather than God’s?
Come out here with us into the light. It’sniceout here. There’s more God out here. There’s moreloveout here.
Please stop making life so much harder than it has to be. Than it’s supposed to be.

Those are the words of straight ally John Shore in response to a straight woman who wrote him after her family and friends attacked her for being affirming.
If you’re not familiar with John Shore, check out his stuff here.

Dear right-wing gayophobic Christian parents of America:

Will you please stop it now with the being purposefully ignorant? Just stop being crazy right now. If you love what the Bible says, love all of that the Bible says. Learn about gay people. Learn about LGBT-affirming Christians. Learn about Christian gay people.

Just … you know:learn.Open up. Imagine the Holy Spirit reallyisinside of you, and reallyistalking to you, just like Jesus said would happen. Just like is happening with you right now.

Do you really think that’s the Holy Spirit telling you that God has a problem with people being gay?

If you listen just a little bit harder, don’t you think that voice sounds an awful lot likeyourvoice, rather than God’s?

Come out here with us into the light. It’sniceout here. There’s more God out here. There’s moreloveout here.

Please stop making life so much harder than it has to be. Than it’s supposed to be.

Those are the words of straight ally John Shore in response to a straight woman who wrote him after her family and friends attacked her for being affirming.

If you’re not familiar with John Shore, check out his stuff here.