Christian BoyLove Forum #65947
I'm conscious that I didn't highlight that there is a shift in policy happening here mainly because I was hoping to get people to engage with the whole text, and not just this issue. My defence for the change is
1) To provide a resource that more conservative Christians can be pointed to without hesitation.
2) to create a space for those who want to be confident that the advice they are receiving here is starting from that point.
3) There is a strong biblical argument for a more exclusionary attitude. In the letters to the churches in the second and third chapters of Revelation, Jesus repeated condemns them for 'tolerating' various beliefs, and He is especially judgemental about 'Jezebel' who encouraged people to sexual immorality (Rev 2:20 - yes the word IS sexual immorality).
One of the many apparent points of contradiction in the NT is provided by Paul's teaching about our attitude to those who are living contrary to what we believe to be God's will on crucial matters.
1) I Cor 5 gives us:
9 I wrote to you in my letter not to associate with immoral men; 10 not at all meaning the immoral of this world, or the greedy and robbers, or idolaters, since then you would need to go out of the world. 11 But rather I wrote to you not to associate with any one who bears the name of brother if he is guilty of immorality or greed, or is an idolater, reviler, drunkard, or robbernot even to eat with such a one. 12 For what have I to do with judging outsiders? Is it not those inside the church whom you are to judge? 13 God judges those outside. Drive out the wicked person from among you.
2) I Cor 15 offers:
33 Do not be deceived: Bad company ruins good morals.
[which IMNSHO opinion explains the collapse of many churches into accepting practices which the bible condemns and a couple of generations ago would have been wholly illegitimate - but I digress]
We need to hold these verses together in the very real tension that they bring; we need to be out in the world, but if we aren't continually being reminded of the truths that God has revealed to us, we will drift away. I've a friend who after a spectacular conversion experience about 10 years ago, has now left his wife for her sister(!). He's been spouting the usual worldly logic about 'I really love her' and 'I can't be happy without her' etc. He's absorbed those beliefs from the media - and has heard little in the church to deny them, with the result that when the temptation first emerged, he drifted into succumbing...
Being a Christian should mean something specific; too often the label is claimed by people whose endorsement of anything which the NT writers would recognise as Christian is negligible. We are called to 'to contend for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints' (Jude v3) because we don't want to one day hear Jesus say to us 'I never knew you; depart from me, you evildoers.' (Mt 7:23) It's easy to settle for being nice and never present the truth that we've heard from God on hard stuff - but to do so is, ultimately, not to be loving; it is to fail to be the watchman who warns the repentant of their state before God, and the result is that their blood is on our heads (Ezekiel 33).
And in a wider context I also feel that because CJAT provides a home for those of more tolerant disposition, we have space to adopt an alternative approach.
Please feel free to discuss the theology that I've presented here in this thread; if you want to discuss the legitimacy of man boy relationships, feel free to do so, but on a separate thread.