The rift in the Methodist church is interesting to watch. This isn't just
"fringe" pastors who are agitating for change.The former
Bishop for Northern California -- and a past president of the National Council
of Churches -- Melvin Talbert, has urged pastors to defy this church law -- and
has performed at least one same-sex marriage himself.Talbert has
said: "Weddings are going on all the time, all across the church, but
it's privately done, and bishops are just looking the other way, and
it's time for someone to say, 'Let's deal with the elephant in
the room.' "He also said: "I declare to you that the
derogatory language and restrictive laws in the Book of Discipline are immoral
and unjust and no longer deserve our loyalty and obedience."More
than 1000 ministers have signed on to Talbert's call to action.Rev. Frank Schaefer, mentioned in the article for performing his son's
ceremony, has said: "After years of affirming him and standing by him
through his struggles over sexual identity, to refuse to perform the wedding
would have negated everything I told him, which was that you were created by God
the way you turned out."
Some will, some won't. Some love, some don't.
I sure am glad that in my church we believe in continual revelation and of
having living prophets today. That way, I can put my complete faith and trust
in the leader of my church that any changes of significant magnitude will be the
Word of God, not just the words in books, which can be interpreted in various
ways or ignored altogether.
@happy2bhere;How do you know those people are not just lying to you
to get your money?
@Ranch - I agree with @happy2bhere that revelation from the Lord to His prophet
is a wonderful blessing for members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day
Saints. I know that this is true because of the undeniable witness of the Holy
Ghost. I know this witness comes from God, because I have felt true joy ever
since that witness came over 40 years ago. I trust the Holy Ghost; He has never
steered me wrong.
RanchBecause if those people are lying to me to get my money, that
would make them crooks. And crooks usually use others peoples money to feather
their own nest. I've seen no evidence that the leaders of the church are
living a millionaires life with the money obtained from the congregation. I do
know that I've seen it in other organizations. In fact that was one of the
"fruits" that made me look at my church. Even when I was not a member
of any religious organization, I felt that it was wrong for the leader of said
organization to be living a !% lifestyle at the expense of the 99%ers he or she
took money from. Some church leaders may be wealthy, but not because of money
taken from church members through lies. And, my discernment on such matters is
pretty good thanks to the Holy Ghost, as gmlewis above pointed out.
@gmlewis --"I know that this is true because of the undeniable
witness of the Holy Ghost."Unfortunately, different people can
easily have "undeniable witnesses of the Holy Ghost" that directly
contradict each other.When these "undeniable witnesses"
disagree, who gets to decide which one is correct?
@Contrariusesterer - It seems self-evident that only the Holy Ghost can provide
the joy that I have felt since receiving His witness. If my witness had come
from a false source, I would perhaps have felt awe or fear, but not
indescribable joy that hasn't dimmed with time.
@gmlewisThat is what the JWs say about thier spiritual witness as well.
@gmlewis --" It seems self-evident that only the Holy Ghost can
provide the joy that I have felt since receiving His witness."Baptists feel that same joy. Buddhists feel that same joy. "Religious
ecstasy" is found all across the religious map.How do you know
that their joy is wrong, and yours isn't?
JD,Maybe. But I have never had a Jehovah's Witness say
anything like that to me. Just my experience.
@contrariusesterer - I never said that "their joy is wrong," but I do
know that mine isn't wrong. Forty years is a long time for "undimmed
joy"; the Holy Ghost provides something that cannot be matched by anything
else. The Holy Ghost is a revelator, and He teaches me things that I could not
have known otherwise. He is a comforter, and I have often been comforted in
times of real danger. I trust Him, without reservation.
@gmlewis --" I never said that "their joy is wrong," but
I do know that mine isn't wrong."If your revelation says
something completely different from someone else's revelation, then one of
you has to be wrong. How do you know that you aren't the wrong one?"Just because I say so" doesn't cut it.
@Contrariusesterer - "Just because I say so doesn't cut it."Actually, it does. This isn't a debate. Believe what you want.
@gmlewis --"Actually, it does. This isn't a debate.
"If nothing else, it's reality.Every religion
has its own "revelations" and "joy" and "religious
ecstasy" and so forth and so on. Yet every religion gets a different message
from those experiences than the other religions do.And guess what --
all those different messages can't all be right. You may *believe* that
your particular message is the right one -- but if you have nothing more with
which to "prove" your correctness than any other religion does, then you
haven't actually proven anything. You are just one in a crowd of multiple
competing and contradicting beliefs, all of whom claim to be correct because of
their own particular "divine revelation".And that's one
of the reasons why I'm so thankful that this country is not a theocracy.
Contrariusesterer (whatever)You are trying to argue that there is no
real truth at all, only what is in the eye of the beholder. If that is your
world, fine, live with it. But some people do see absolute truth and it works
for them. That you can't deny. You may not want it, but you can't
deny it. And because people know truth that you don't does not make it
untrue for then.
@happy2bhere --"You are trying to argue that there is no real
truth at all, only what is in the eye of the beholder."I never
said any such thing.However, it takes more than "the eye of the
beholder" to know what "real truth" IS."But some
people do see absolute truth and it works for them."Some people
BELIEVE that they see absolute truth. Belief is not at all the same thing as