“You know you’re going to hell, right?* Crueler words have never been spoken by an 8-year-old girl, and little girls can be mean for real! Years ago at my small, parochial school in Missouri, the kids were very good at bullying. Psychological warfare was their forte. What better way to check the britches off of a scared, queer elementary student than to tell them the worst possible fate they could imagine awaited them? Now, imagine that the reason that students believed the worst possible fate imaginable would befall them was because of something they couldn’t change, Wouldn’t you be scared? Some gay Christians (like me) were, and some still are. But the number of gay Christians that are not afraid of eternal damnation is much higher than one would think.
I did a poll in the little community in which I reside about how people feel about gay Christians happily going to church with no doubt about their salvation. The responses I got were all across the board, but they had one thing in common, Let me give you a few examples, and see if you can find the commonality;
Scott, a bisexual man, said that he stopped going to church long ago. The message that he heard when he went to church was completely against the person he was.
He didn’t want to hear it anymore, so he stopped going and hasn’t been back in years. However, he still believes he’ll be saved because Jesus already died for our sins.
Danny, a gay man, said that he has been going to church for as long as he can remember. If he’s being honest, though, he only goes now for two reasons – because it makes his grandma happy and to support another queer friend of his whose belief in Christ and attendance at church is very important. At times, Danny hears messages that are anti-gay, and they make him feel less than in the moment, but there are so many other queer people at his church that the feeling doesn’t last. By the time he gets back home, he doesn’t even think about it anymore and he still believes he and his friend will be saved.
JT, a straight man in the community, says that he believes gay Christians are doing the same thing as straight Christians
– being faithful and doing their best to be good in the eyes of the Lord. They just happen to be gay. He believes other Christians are upset with him for having this point of view, but he doesn’t care. He still believes they’ll all be saved.
Jon Jon, another gay man, says Jesus said come as you are. No sin is greater than the other. His homosexuality is no greater sin than murder. Jesus paid for all our sins and we are all already saved. Christ said it all and there’s nothing left to say.
Did you catch it? If not, look again. Though each story was different, they all ended the same – everyone gets saved. Personally, while like Scott I do not currently attend church, I agree with Jon Jon, not only because he was very aggressively convicted in his statement (3 snaps in a
“Z” formation and all), but because he is absolutely spot on. Jesus said come as you are, not come if you’re already good to go and you don’t need any help. What good would Christ’s forgiveness be if only those who didn’t need it came to him?
Logically speaking, believing that those who are part of the LGBTQ community would be damned to hell would be like believing a short person or an African American person would be damned to hell as well. Why would an omnipotent, benevolent God send one to eternal damnation for something that one could not change? This is the logic that many people in the queer community have come to accept. Neither the verse that many Christians believe damns queer community members – man should not lay with another man as he does a woman – nor any of the other verses that describe the sins of man come with a conditional statement – don’t do this or suffer eternal damnation. They just state what the sins are and, later on, tell us that Christ already paid the ultimate price for said sins. It makes me wonder why the idea that queer folks were meant to go straight to hell took such strong roots in Christianity in the first place.
So I say bravo to Jon Jon, Scott, Danny, JT, and all the other LGBTQ community members and supporters who have decided to pursue their salvation via
Christianity. I hope they all can find a congregation that accepts and loves them as much as they love themselves. If not, my buddy Shawn, a straight, practicing Hindu man, says you can always check out his religion. “We have transgender gods, so I’m pretty sure y’all would be good over here.”
What is your take on this???
blog by DD.