Addressing Concerns On Recent Blog.
Hello MMCM family,
I would like to formally address a specific issue connected to a recent blog post that came out this past Sunday titled: Orphans, Widows, and Foreigners: A Biblical Response to Social Justice authored by Marqueze Kennedy. Towards the end of the blog, a specific portion read:
"At what point will the LGBTQ community receive fair and equal treatment from our Christian churches?"
There seems to be enough confusion to warrant a formal response from our organization. To address the concern in a coherent and helpful manner, I have summarized the majority of the feedback received into 4 primary questions I hope to answer each in a way that is helpful.
#1- Were you aware of the specific statement before it's release?
Yes, I was and am aware of the statement made by our content author within this blog resource and approved it's release.
#2-What is MMCM's formal stance on the LGBTQ community?
First, the overall theme of this blog was not primarily focused on the LGBTQ community. Transparently, I was surprised to receive the amount of feedback I did regarding this issue. However, my desire is to be helpful; therefore, I would like to refer you to our Statement of Faith and Basic Beliefs located on our website. This will provide a better understanding of our stance on all things connected to Christianity. However, I would be more than willing to share specifics with any individual in a one on one setting if it would actually help a real-life scenario they are navigating. It's important for this email to not be used for divisive purposes; I hope you understand.
#3- What is your stance specifically on gay marriage?
Making Much of Christ Ministries does not affirm same-sex marriage nor presumes that local churches and pastors need to be compelled to perform such ceremonies. At the same time, we also do not affirm many forms of heterosexual relationships/marriages that are outside of God's will. There are many reasons that would not be wise for a local church to not affirm a marriage between a heterosexual couple as well.
#4- I'm struggling to understand the equal treatment phrase. Would the blog be better served without it?
No. The fact that we are having this conversation makes this blog and it's reference to the LGBTQ community not only necessary but timely in today's society. What I am willing to do is address the statement in question; particularly the phrase "equal treatment."
Local churches and pastors should not feel pressure to perform all things equal with the LGBTQ Community. But again, that applies to every community and situation. Boys and girls are not physically equal. The young and old are not equal in intellect. Parents and children are held to different moral standards. People are not born into equal opportunity. Clearly through Scripture, God is not primarily focused on equality as much as He is on justice and fairness. (hence the name of the blog post) Important: Godly Justice & Fairness is unlike our own perspective of these qualities. God's description of fairness is exactly what we need; even if we don't know it. His way provides a better type of equality, than how we often consider the term. So while I have adjusted the sentence to better reflect scripture; there's no way the sentence in totality should be removed. We need to treat the LGBTQ Community with Christ-centered compassion in our love, relationships, attention, and patience. This is where the word equality is well-served. This starts with a conscious move away from referring to them as "a them" and reforming our thoughts towards this community as a "us." Us in the sense of people ALL in need of God's saving grace. Let's love each other patiently, while simultaneously shaping each other towards transformative truth. I promise, it is possible to do so without compromising our convictions. This newsletter isn't built to fully examine cultural matters. I hope to explore this with our online community more robustly in a proper blog format at a later date.
I understand the need to provide clarity when responsibly producing gospel-centered resources. That's why I'm happy to provide this email through The Sharing Space Newsletter :). But most importantly, I hope the main point of this blog was not lost. We as Bible-Believing Christians must accept our role in society not only as image-bearers of Christ but as ambassadors of justice. This was the point of the article. The real question is, is your life reflecting the attributes presented in this blog? We also should celebrate a young seminary student who is a part of Making Much of Christ Ministries as he passionately shares important themes for us to consider.
Marqueze, I am so proud of you. Keep investigating and discovering God's will with humility and He will make all things plain. This is true for all of us.
Loving each of you with all my heart...more than you know
Brandon K. Rachal
Founder. President. Content Author.