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Core Questions

I've just seen this post over at the Cranmer blog - I read the Cranmer blog because the author, Adrian Hilton, is thoughtful in his posts and because I enjoy his writing style. He comes from a traditional Anglican, conservative politics angle - and I regularly disagree with him. But then again, I also read many blogs and newspaper comment pieces that I disagree with - I do this naturally because I find it much more educating than surrounding myself with like-minded folk.

I'm not so concerned with Cranmer's views on the subject of homosexuality, he is entitled to his personal opinions even if they are wrong. However, what concerns me is that there are Christians out there so obsessed with the issue of homosexuality that they are now organising themselves and attempting to spend money plastering their anti-homosexuality views across buses in London. The group in this particular case calls itself the 'Core Issues Trust'.

I think such groups really need to break out of their bubble and consider, in prayer and reading of scripture, what they're doing.

For a start, they need to re-consider their priorities. Could they be using the money spent on these campaigns to much more constructive causes, to positively change people's lives rather than sit in judgement of other people? What matters most, people's sex lives or people fighting to simply live?

And secondly, by obsessing over this issue, are they tying Christianity together with homosexuality in such a way that they misrepresent the core messages of 'the faith'? Have they become the proverbial false prophets? The reality is there is sound evidence that the New Testament, the text that in Christian eyes effectively supersedes the Old Testament, does not speak with any measure of clarity on homosexuality or marriage - this does mean to say it is 'pro gay' but nor does it make it 'anti gay'. And if we look beyond specific quotes, we have to ask what spirit is the New Testament  written in? What are the recurring, over-arching themes?

Finally, I guess the debate also comes down to what Quakers call 'continuous revelation' - is the Christian faith completely fixed in time and place, or does it 'flex'? Is Christianity ultimately about laws carved in stone, or is it more about human experience? Is, as the United Church of Christ says, God still speaking?

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