Yeah, you read me right. If you want to be a real conservative, you might want to consider supporting LGBT equality in the church.
Let me explain.
In the debate around LGBT equality, almost everyone I know labels an affirming stance as progressive or liberal, while a non-affirming stance is considered conservative or traditional.
I beg to differ.
If conservative means adhering to the prejudices of recent centuries, then yes, excluding gay folks is a conservative move. If conservative is defined as clinging to a this is how we’ve always done it attitude towards life, then I agree, a non-affirming stance meets that definition.
But what if being conservative means conserving the heart of our faith? What if we define conservative as re-connecting with the Spirit that inspired the Bible in the first place? What if love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control were hallmarks of conservatism?
I’m here to say that embracing the spiritual equality of our LGBT brothers and sisters is a radically conservative position. To give love and encouragement to gay folks conserves the heart and soul of the gospel in the face of fear, proof-texting, and legalism.
If anything, those who deny the God-breathed lives and much-needed spiritual gifts of LGBT brethren are liberals. They’re liberal in disregarding the overwhelming witness of Scripture, which teaches us that God always finds a way to break down barriers between people. God favors those who are marginalized. God’s judgment comes, not on the poor and excluded, but on those who think they have it all figured out.
So, I’ll ask you again: Are you conservative enough to embrace gay Christians?