Friday, March 28, 2008

THE MISUNDERSTANDING OF "FAITH"

"Police are investigating an 11-year-old girl's death from an undiagnosed, treatable form of diabetes after her parents chose to pray for her rather than take her to a doctor.

"An autopsy showed Madeline Neumann died Sunday from diabetic ketoacidosis, a condition that left too little insulin in her body, Everest Metro Police Chief Dan Vergin said."

[For the full article, see here.]

We've all heard of these cases before, where parents use their "faith" as a substitute for getting a critically ill child needed medical attention which could conceivably save that child's life.

Beyond the foolishness and gullibility of such parents in using the "faith" argument, the fact is that such misuse of the "faith" argument can be seen in many professing Christians' reaction to LGBT people. The same ignorance is witnessed in both such cases!

"Faith," "pistis" in the Greek, means to have abiding trust in God over and above seen circumstances. It does not negate using one's God-given discernment in knowing how to apply that faith in the world in which we live.

That discernment doesn't negate putting faith in action; rather, it puts faith in action by moving the mountains necessary to care for those whom God placed in our charge as stewards.

I remember when my wife was pregnant with our first daughter, and she asked her obstetrician, "When am I going to have my baby?" He wisely answered her, "Remember, this is not your baby. You are just privileged to carry it."

Those words of wisdom hit the mark! That precious child was not a possession of those parents to use their "faith" as a vehicle by which their child would be healed. Their child had the best chance of being healed by their coupling their faith with taking action to do everything in their power to help that child.

In other words, we are all to put legs on our prayers, and do what must be done to reach our goal, be that goal the healing of a child or the acquisition of full and equal rights for LGBT people.

Just as a misunderstanding of biblical faith may well have caused this child's death, the misunderstanding of biblical faith, and assorted and selectively used, and erroneously interpreted, biblical passages to seek to deny LGBT people full and equal rights come from the same dark place: ignorance of the things of God!

Just as those parents seem to have ignorantly misapplied "faith," professing Christian homophobes ignorantly misapply "faith" in erroneously denigrating and condemning same-sex love as well as in their denigrating, judging, and condemning LGBT people. One doesn't have to be an extremist to commit such errors, but one does have to be ignorant and have more than a modicum of hate and/or gullibility in their hearts to allow another human being to die in front of their eyes when there are alternative explanations and avenues available to help prevent that death.

The whole idea of "hate the sin and love the sinner," is not only one big lie as, if the truth were known, professing Christian homphobes undoubtedly hate the "sinner" too, but the fact is that nowhere in the Bible is that verse to be found; nowhere in Scripture is same-sex love condemned. Indeed, as can be seen in the case of King David and Jonathan, same-sex love is affirmed and celebrated!

Just as nowhere in the Bible does it say that we are to merely have "faith" in order to have others healed of their illnesses or symptoms of their illnesses, nowhere in the Bible does it say that Gay people are not in every way equal to Straight people in the eyes of God. Indeed, Jesus never even once talked against Gay people!

Moreover, Jesus recognized that there are people who are born Gay, as we see in Matthew 19:12 when He said, "For there are some eunuchs, which were so born from their mother's womb...."

Yet, ignorant and often hateful and demented professing Christians feel free to condemn and judge LGBT people (Clearly something Jesus unequivocally told us not to do!), and do the equivalent of what these parents allegedly did. And, just as might well have happened in this case, these professing Christian homophobes cause the deaths of others, be those deaths physical and/or emotional and/or spiritual.

And there can be no mistake about that fact!

In addition to the death of this little girl, the ironic fact is that these parents showed far more faith in God than do professing Christian homophobes, in that the former trusted God to answer their prayers without them interceding in any way save through prayer, whereas the latter don't even show a modicum of trust in God by the very fact of their strident, hateful pronouncements against God's LGBT children.

So, the ultimate irony is that these ignorant parents showed themselves to be far more Godly than the professing Christian homophobes who, unlike these parents, don't trust God to deal with His children as He sees fit, but seek to usurp the role of God in their most grievous sin of judging and condemning others.

There is little doubt in my mind that God will deal far more harshly with the ignorant, often hateful, professing Christian homophobes than He will with this poor couple who just lost their daughter ostensibly through their ignorance!
Share |

2 comments:

KittKatt said...

I'm a lesbian minister and author who just discovered your blog -- and applaud your work here! I added it to the list of favorite blogs at the Jesus In Love Blog. Perhaps because I love the visual arts, I especially enjoy your photos of “Jesus’ GLBT children” along the side of the blog. May God bless you.

Jerry Maneker said...

Hi kittkatt: Thanks so much for your very kind and very much appreciated comment. You have a wonderful blog and I added it to my Links section. Let's keep up the good fight of faith! My very best wishes, Jerry.