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Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Is Rob Bell Right or Wrong about Gay Marriage?

So, I guess Rob Bell is in favor of gay marriage now.

According to the Huffington Post Bell said:
"I am for marriage. I am for fidelity. I am for love, whether it's a man and woman, a woman and a woman, a man and a man. I think the ship has sailed and I think the church needs -- I think this is the world we are living in and we need to affirm people wherever they are."

So, is he right or wrong?

The Washington Post welcomes Bell to the side of right and justice in a new Civil Rights Movement.

The Patheos blog descries Bell as the latest celebrity to fall to the scythe of cultural normativism.

Which one is right?

I think that we're asking the wrong question here. Or, to put it differently, we're not asking the right questions.

Rob Bell says that he supports gay marriage. Okay, great. But what does that mean? Doe he now think that homosexuality is not a sin in the bible? Or does he think that the bible shouldn't affect civil laws?

Both are conversations that are worthy and need to be discussed. But what's happening here (in the case of the Patheos blog, to name just one) is that Christians are condemning Bell to hell (ha, the jokes on them since he doesn't believe in hell). On the other side, gay rights activists are saying the Bell is in favor of homosexual relationships (not just gay marriage).

From what we have so far, we can't really make a determination. And that's the problem.

The conversation about gay marriage is so mired in preconceived notions that any statement on either side means that one must align with a particular view. It's inconceivable that one could be for gay marriage and still consider homosexuality a sin according to the bible.

And that's why we can't talk about this. We're yelling at each other rather than having a discussion. Yelling gets us nowhere and, in the case of the church, it is only serving to further marginalize and minimize any message of hope or truth they might have.

Please stop yelling. Please stop promoting the yelling. It's not helping anything.

So, is Rob Bell right or wrong about gay marriage?

I don't know, let's have a conversation and figure it out.

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