Saturday, September 15, 2007

We're Not Alone

Last year our former ad agency, FaithHighway refused to continue business with us when they discovered our church's support for gay people. They asked me, "What would you do if a gay couple walked into your church on a Sunday morning?" I responded, "Umm, I'd give them a welcome packet and say how glad I am they're here." They responded, as you know, "I am sorry Reverend, but that's not the answer we were looking for. We can no longer do business with you." Fortunately for us, Spotrunner was willing to do business with us and as a result of FaithHighway, Spotrunner GAVE us our commercials, only charging us for airtime. It was a silver-lining in our cloud.

This week, an insurance company refused to even offer up a quote to West Adrian UCC when the insurance agency mulled over the UCC's position of support for gay marriage. They couch their reason as a rise in possible violence directed at the church and possible insurance claims from that violence--we know that it's just another form of bigotry and hate.

Let us pray for West Adrian UCC in Adrian, Michigan that they'll find an insurance company who'll give them more than they are asking and needing.

You can read more of the story by going here to Rev. Church Currie's blog.

3 comments:

Gabe said...

Bo,

This is Gabe, the guy who you worked with at FaithHighway. Just stumbled on this post. Let me first say that I still think you're a great guy. I really enjoyed our conversations when I was working at FaithHighway. (I am no longer working there, so what I'm about to say is not on behalf of the company, although I'm sure they'll agree.) Your desire to welcome people from all walks of life is Biblical, but your doctrine is not.

You didn't report our conversation accurately on your blog, and I think you need to revise it. If you recall, FaithHighway agreed with you in welcoming gay people--just not affirming their lifestyle. They refused to work with you because of a doctrinal issue, not because you're friendly to gay people. There's a big difference.

The Bible teaches that Jesus was sent to die for the world because the Father loves people. Jesus loves homosexuals! There is no debate here. But He loves us too much to leave us the way He found us.

The Bible clearly teaches that homosexuality is a sin. 1 Corinthians 6:8-10 says this: "Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God."

Homosexuality is listed as sin right next to sex outside of marriage (including heterosexual relationships), stealing, greed, drunkenness, and cheating. Let me ask you a question: would you also affirm the lifestyle of someone who was a thief? What about a drunkard? A greedy businessman? I don't think you would. The Bible is not "picking on" homosexuals. Those who play the martyr simply love their sin, are deceived, and don't care about obeying God.

I don't expect you to switch teams based off of my comment. But I think you should revise your report of our conversation, for the sake of being truthful.

Bo, I love you man! Praying for you.

In Christ alone... Gabe Harris.

Bo said...

Gabe-

Thanks for writing and it's great to hear from you. I published your other comments to different posts on this blog too.

I am sorry if you feel that this post slights my perspective on how we were treated with your company during our commercial campaign. Truth is, I reported here exactly what you said to me when you told me that your company can no longer due business with us. Whether your company's reasons for that rejection are homophobic or theological, once I answered your "out of the blue" question that we'd accept a gay couple in our church, your company refused to do business with us any longer. It's really that simple.

Now I understand your position well and know where you're coming from. While our positions on the authority of Scripture may differ, I can say after talking with you many times over the phone and in conversations regarding our commercials, that you're an honest man who follows his heart. As you are praying for me, I too will pray for you. I'll pray that God will bless you in your new job and that God will meet and exceed all your needs and desires.

Maybe we'll run into each other and then have a good old fashion conversation about what the Bible says and doesn't say about matters of the heart.

Blessings to you

Gabe said...

That would be a great conversation! I look forward to having it... it's my sense that this "conversation" will become more and more controversial and volatile in times to come, as far as this nation is concerned.

Thanks for posting my comment. I just wanted you to know that you and I do not disagree on welcoming and loving homosexuals.

I am a big fan of an outreach I heard took place at a Gay Pride parade in Georgia: a local church set up a booth to hand out free water bottles to the marchers who were exposed to the hot sun. Above the booth read a sign that said: "FREE Water! Just like God's love, no strings attached." This church got a chance to minister the gospel to two lesbians in the booth next to them, who were blown away that a church would actually do that.

That's the gospel. I suspect that not many homosexuals have experienced that kind of love from a church. While I think the church has clearly made gays and lesbians aware that they are in sin, we may not be screaming God's love as loudly. The gospel includes both: God's love AND the call to repent. The Bible says that God's love leads us to repentance. This is where I stand.

Apparently, we disagree on this point. I am curious to learn how you view the authority of the Bible on issues of the heart, but maybe that should be saved for our conversation, rather than a blog. ;) Good hearing back from you!