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(RNS) The closing of the most prominent "ex-gay" group comes at a critical point for gay rights, as the U.S. Supreme Court prepares to issue two potentially decisive rulings on gay marriage and public opinion shifts rapidly in favor of gay rights and even gay marriage.

52 Comments

  1. Apologizing for sinful behavior does not make right the wrong of homosexuality. “Speaking the truth in love…” is still the answer because its purpose is to “mature” the hearer. Never popular, it remains a constant that
    “you shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free.” Bullying a sinner guarantees non-change and likely more confusion, hostility and rebellion against God’s truth and especially against God’s “mouthpiece”. Speak the truth, live the truth, become a beacon of light and not a bolt of lightning. God sent His Son to die for all sinners, yourself included!

    • The assertion that calling a homosexual a sinner is supposed to mature them is, at best, insulting. I would challenge you to find a single LGBT individual that has not heard that ad nauseum. We’ve all heard it, most of us countless times. You aren’t telling us anything new. You insult our intelligence by acting like we haven’t heard it before.
      All you do by quoting bible verses and judging people like that is cause pain to the hearer. It’s not even the kind of pain that helps someone realize the truth. It’s the kind of pain that causes psychological damage. Alan Chambers realized that, and I commend him for it. I don’t even care if he still considers homosexuality a sin. He’s an adult, he can make up his own mind. If he is willing to respect our viewpoint and leave us be, I am happy to do the same.

    • Janis seems very much in the dark about sexuality. If Janis is heterosexual and draws the conclusion that homosexuality is a wrong on that basis, that is typical of the plain, illiterate prejudice of heterosexuals toward other sexuality. And that’s no different than the prejudice of whites toward blacks, westerners toward easterners, or even the biases of those of one religion toward those of another. Prejudice is prejudice. And the base of all prejudice is ignorance.

      What is meant by “truth to love?” The correct quotation is “truth to power.” “Mature” is a descriptive, not a verb. Biblical quotations are never applicable because they are ancient writings of various stages of mythology long, long before science. The bible world was flat, “created” in six days, a different aspect each day. And, as made so clear by Janis, one person’s truth is hardly that of other persons. In short, Janis makes the awful error of using mythology as a text of history and all the sciences. In short, Janis is singing poetry, not speaking reality.

    • Gerald Donohue

      Janis, you are talking about your own family. In every extended family there are Lesbians and Gays and even Transvestites. By condemning Homosexuality, you are condemning your own family members. By rejecting the ones you love, does nothing to change them. Watch a movie called Prayers for Bobby which is available on YOUTUBE.

    • Apologizing for your sinful behavior will make your right because currently you are in the wrong when it comes to the topic of homosexuality. It is a not a sin to love, but it is a sin to hate. Speak the truth in love and listen so you may mature. Love is the union of two souls not two genders. The constant is the Compass of Christ’s Kin, true North no lie.

      The Bloodline of The Holy Family and Jesus Christ.
      The direct bloodline descendant and Heir to the Throne of David comes from The House of Payne. The Unicorn Apocalypse or the reveal of:
      Eisus Uni Peg Unix- The Unicorn Pegasus: OS2 Jesus S Aaron Uni Peg Unix Eisus Christ-Payne XXXVI, Heir to the Holy SEE.

  2. It seems that for the last 5-10 years the Lord has been doing a work of purging in the church. While I personally remain convinced that the practice of homosexuality is sin I also grieve how horribly the church has acted toward the LGBT community in the past, especially during the height of the culture wars of the 80′s and 90′s. May God do a work of correction in his church such that we are fearless in speaking and holding to the truth but we do so with extravagant love toward all.

    • The original Leviticus text you so desire to manipulate your own bigotry was not written about homosexuals. The original ancient text was an edict against men who took and/or chased too many women….basically telling horn dogs to leave some women for the other men. But you base your beliefs upon one of the 700 versions of the original ancient writings that was rewritten by men to benefit their own horn dog propensities. Get a clue before it’s too late.

      • “The original Leviticus text you so desire to manipulate your own bigotry was not written about homosexuals”…..what are you talking about? I love how the word “bigot” is on the tip of everyone’s tongue when this topic comes up. That word goes both ways, pal. People DO NOT have to accept the homosexual lifestyle. Common sense tells us that two men (or women) in a sexual relationship cannot breed naturally; thus it wasn’t meant to be. End of story.

  3. Janis,

    The entire context of Ephesians 4:15, which you’ve quoted on “speaking the truth in love” is focused INWARDLY upon the members of a church body. All of Ephesians is weaving this wonderful story that talks about believers loving one another and extending GRACE to one another. It explains a great mystery for those of us in the modern western church, that spiritual growth does not occur through our own hard work and personal spiritual disciplines and working harder at being better, it explains that we have been given gifts for the purpose of using them together in love and that THIS is actually how Christian growth and maturity occurs. The passage talks about unity and maturity closely together in Eph4; the NIV translation even calls 4-16 “Unity and Maturity in the Body of Christ”.

    This passage is about speaking the truth in love withIN the church, to those you are closest to an acting as a body with. It is NOT focused on those outside or on the edges of the church. The church’s job is to LOVE, not judge; there is one who gets to judge and it’s not us; the holy spirit convicts, not us.

    Janis, I really think if you take a close look at the surrounding context of Eph4 and Eph as a whole, you’ll come to the conclusion that the “speak the truth in love” verse only applies to those within the church already and with whom you have a close relationship where you are together acting as the body. (Outside that context it’s called “judging”; See: “Judge not”.)

  4. This is a wonderful step in the right direction. However, I think an apology is weak, an apology does not fix the lives of the people who were further traumatized by this organization. I don’t believe homosexuality is a sin and I don’t believe it is a “curable disease”. The fact that people still latch on to that idea makes me sick to my stomach.
    I do believe that we should think about Jesus’s teachings when we approach the subject of homosexuality and we should ask ourselves WWJD when approaching the subject. Would Jesus spew hatred? Would Jesus have told an LGBTQ individual that he\she was an abomination and they would go straight to hell? I don’t think he would have.
    In Mark 10:45 Jesus said, “For even the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.”
    Even if Jesus believed the individual to be a sinner, he would have welcomed them with open arms, he would have given them food, and he would have given to them love and kindness.
    Jesus said in Mathew 5:44 “But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you”
    Therefore when approached by the LGTQ community, Jesus would have offered them nothing but love and kindness, he would not try to “minister” to them and he would pray for them (if he had believed it to be a sin). Which I hold the opinion that it is not.

    • Joe,
      What in the world makes you believe that homosexuality is not sin? What other parts of Scripture that make you unhappy or uncomfortable have you decided you don’t believe in? The Bible is truth in it’s entirety, we are not allowed to pick and choose which verses we like and dislike, discarding those that we don’t like. The Bible is quite clear in defining homosexuality as a sin, that’s undeniable, so what makes you think that Jesus would not try to minister to a homosexual, he ministered to the woman caught in adultery, did He not? Like Jesus, we are to love the sinner, but hate the sin, I love the homosexuals but hate their sin, and I know that Jesus loves them too much to leave them in their sin, so He provides the power with which they can be changed to a normal sexuality. Yes, homosexuality is NOT normal, if for no other reason, than the FACT that homosexuals and lesbians are incapable of reproduction with each other! The REAL Christian Church says to the homosexual, “Come as you are, you will be loved, but be prepared to change,” And is that, after all, not exactly what the True Christian Church says to ALL of us, “be prepared to change, because you came here broken!” Calling sin, SIN, is not “Spewing hatred,” it is the beginning place of sanctification! Jesus would indeed tell the homosexual that his sinful lifestyle would keep them from eternal life with Him, in fact, He told that to sinners all over Galilee during His ministry. Jesus COMMAND to the woman caught in adultery, “GO, and sin no more,” was loving, but may have appeared not so kind; and why would He not give the same commandment to the homosexual? Sorry Joe, your belief that homosexuality is NOT sin, does not make it so, the Scriptures prove you wrong!

      • Gerald Donohue

        Gerrick, Imagine if you could be convinced that Homosexuality is immutable and for some reason, people are born that way, and that some good strong Christian families contain Gay and Lesbian members. In that case, your interpretation of the Bible has to be wrong. I am gay but I am not dating at this moment and not actively looking for sex, but I’m still GAY.

        • Actually no it does not matter if people are born gay (no real evidence for that btw). People are born with addictions/disease/etc but that doesn’t make those things good or desirable. Our biology and genetics are affected by sin as well.

          Right now you are living in God’s Will by not pursuing your SSA’s. Its the behavior that is sinful not the feelings. Keep it up!

  5. How telling it is that both Exodus founders apologizing and shutting down the organization . . .

    have blatantly ignored their responsibility for the thousands of suicides, destruction of families and ongoing murders this organization instigated preachers….one and all…inspired by Exodus Int’l (and their ilk) to preach vile bigotry to those in the pews. Each horrific murder, and suicide can be traced directly to a pulpit.

    We can also know that none of the preachers nor Exodus & their minions, who have charged millions upon millions of dollars in fees for the phony ‘therapy’, will refund their ill gotten gains to their victims…nor will they use their pulpit’s sorcery/incantations to invisible supernatural creatures to bring their murdered and suicide victims back to life.

    The world awaits with bated breath for all these ‘godly’ people to instigate parents to apologize to their children for being heartless sub-human parents via pulpit issued bible lore edicts to destroy their children and even KILL their children… and lest we forget the classic marching orders….to disown them for their own vain goal to enter a mythic realm in deep space.

    • Mike,
      Why are YOU so angry? Where is the EVIDENCE of all the death and destruction you speak of? Aren’t you really just guilty of “piling on,” spewing your hatred after the fact? Exodus is history, what did you say when they were viable? BTW the statistics don’t bear out your feelings!

      Studies of Exodus participants

      Jones and Yarhouse
      Professors Stanton Jones and Mark Yarhouse teamed as authors to answer the questions “Can persons who participate in focused religious ministries experience a change in their sexual orientation?” and “Is it harmful for anyone to participate in such programs?” amongst various persons ‘seeking change’ while involved with Exodus ministries over a three-year period of time. They published their results in “Ex-Gays?”: A Longitudinal Study of Religiously Mediated Change In Sexual Orientation”.[25] They found, from a sample of 73 participants (98 before dropouts):
      15% “Success: Conversion”: subjects who reported that they felt their change to be successful, and who reported substantial reductions in homosexual attraction and substantial conversion to heterosexual attraction and functioning;
      23% “Success: Chastity”: These were subjects who reported that they felt their change to be successful and who reported homosexual attraction to be present only incidentally or in a way that does not seem to bring about distress, allowing them to live happily without overt sexual activity;
      29% “Continuing”: These persons may have experienced modest decreases in homosexual attraction but were not satisfied with their degree of change and remained committed to the change process;
      15% “Non-Response”: These persons had experienced no significant sexual orientation change. These subjects had not given up on the change process but may be confused or conflicted about which direction to turn next;
      4% “Failure: Confused”: These persons had experienced no significant sexual orientation change and had given up on the change process but without yet embracing gay identity; and
      8% “Failure: Gay Identity”: These persons had clearly given up on the change process and embraced gay identity.
      They found “no evidence that the type of attempt to change sexual orientation studied here is harmful.” 67% Positive vs 12% Fail

      Schaeffer et al.
      Schaeffer et al. surveyed 140 members of Exodus. After a year, 29% said they had changed their orientation, and another 65% said they were in the process of changing. Participants were considered behaviorally successful if they had abstained from any type of physical homosexual contact in the past year. Success was associated with strong religious motivation and positive mental health. Change was positively associated with religious motivation and emotional well-being.[26] 94% Positive response

      Ponticelli[edit]
      Research by Ponticelli on 15 ex-lesbian women found that Exodus helped them change their lesbian identities through a combination of a new and compelling schema concerning sexuality, reinterpretation of one’s past according to that schema, and social support.[27] 100% Positive result

      While the test groups were small the success rate is undeniable!

  6. A very tragic day. Certainly the willingness to sincerely apologize for past wrongs is necessary, but it’s clear that Alan Chambers has gone far beyond apologizing, effectively abandoning 1 Cor. 6:9-11 and 1 Cor. 10:13 (and other key Scriptures) in the process.

    I would simply urge Christians to let go of Exodus (or whatever Alan Chambers chooses to label that organization in the future). Just let it go, and instead check out and hook up with the Restored Hope Network instead. It’s an excellent alternative, and that’s what is needed at this critical time.

    • Michael Bussee who left Exodus, is a co-founder, who left to be with his boyfriend, Gary Cooper, 4 years after founding Exodus. Cooper died of AIDS, Bussee has been trying to tear down Exodus every since he left with his boyfriend. He and his angry homosexual friends and SATAN have won a great victory, Exodus surrenders to the very people it tried to help!

  7. I would hate for people to assume that they cannot be healed by Jeuss just because this one organization has shut down. Gay is not anyone’s indentity. You might not be able to pray the gay away but you can certainly be healed and have your SSA transformed. Homosexual behavior is sinful in every from and Jesus can indeed rescue people from succumbing to it.

      • God does not create people gay, our sinful fallen world does.

        You cannot control your attractions but you can control your behavior. Attractions are not sinful, behavior acting on those attractions is.

      • rhona collier

        maybe you should get into a bible study, God created everything,satan sin freewill, our problem is not what God created it is how we act on it.some people think that inner voice is reason, if you have ever listened closely its God giving you the opportunity to chose for good.

  8. What a decent and, yes, humble thing to do. I’ve come to accept that no matter what I may think I know about the GLBT community, I simply don’t know anything at all. I don’t know what it is like to struggle with same-sex attraction, any more than I know what it is like to struggle with a gambling addiction or a smoking habit. It’s beyond the scope of my experience, or my knowledge. The only thing I know for sure is that grace matters, and I, for one, need more of it, for all sorts of reasons.

  9. It seems that this topic was on a great many people’s minds even as we did not know what was happening at Exodus. My church did an unusual sermon about sexual sin, leading me to write a blog post about what sexual sins concern God: Hint: the church doesn’t preach about 13 in 16 of them.

  10. Gerrick, I guess if we can’t pick and choose what we want to “believe” in the bible then do you have a daughter? Because the bible says I can purchase her from you and keep her as my slave. Leviticus 25 verse 44 through 46. Also the bible says that she can remain mine after 6 years unless of course she fails to please me, the I can sell her back to you. Exodus 21 verses 7 -11. In Epesians 6:5 the bible says that slaves are to obey their masters with fear and respect as they would Christ. Also in exodus chapter 21 verses 20 and 21 it says that if I beat my slaves to death, as long as they live for 2 days after I beat them, I won’t be punished because after all they are my property. So why can’t I buy slaves if the bible says so, and after all we can’t pick and choose right? So we should be trading slaves right now. Maybe we should trade the homosexuals as slaves since they are such an abomination right?

      • Frank, and what ignorance is that? The fact that everything I quoted is true? The fact that i have probably read more of the bible than you. I have also read many other religious texts. Or The fact that Leviticus is almost ALWAYS quoted in defense that homosexuality is a sin, but immediately shot down by The same Christians that say “That is Old law”. Who also say “we can’t pick and choose what we believe I the Bible”. But ok if we have to ignore Leviticus then what about the verses in Exodus. Or better yet, how about we leave out the Old Testament altogether and move on the the New Testament.
        The servant will be severely punished, for though he knew his duty, he refused to do it. “But people who are not aware that they are doing wrong will be punished only lightly. Much is required from those to whom much is given, and much more is required from those to whom much more is given.” (Luke 12:47-48 so we are allowed to beat our slaves even if they didn’t know they were doing anything wrong. I guess ignorance is no excuse amongst slaves.
        How about reading Romans 1:21-31, I won’t paste it here because I hope you are competent enough to read on your own. But I will summarize. In Romans, we are introduced to a group of people who knowingly reject God. From this point on their lives begin to spiral downward and they commit all sorts of sins. One of which is turning away or “exchanging” what is “natural” to them for that which is “unnatural”. The problem of course is, what is “natural”? The word “natural” comes from two Greek words phusikos and phusis. These words literally mean that which is a persons “natural disposition” and something that comes “instinctively” to them. In other words, it is who you are naturally; without reprogramming, counseling, or any other form of behavioral modification that attempts to change your behavior to that which society has deemed acceptable. So in this passage it tells us that to be “counseled” to not be gay, is a sin.

  11. I have to leave another supplement because I already predict what is next. So let me also state that the I portable of the verse in Romans is to emphasize the ORDER in which things occurred in the story. These people weren’t ‘gay’ and then they had turned away from God. No, they had first turned away from God, and then they turned toward that which was unnatural for them.
    The real problem concerning this text is that people want to take whatever is natural for them and then try and apply to everyone else.

  12. rhona collier

    what have we come to today. sin is still sin, I am tired of gay rights being shoved down our throats. what about human rights,your sexual preference is generally enhanced by nature or some perverted individual. these persons weren’t told on when some of these things happened. now we have all of these gay people screaming abouts rights. our country was built with God in mind, yet we have taken Him out of everything. when chosing your life style remember all the baggage that comes with it,good or bad. I am praying for everyone.

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