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Old 07-14-2007, 10:15 AM   #301
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everything that happened last night after Memphis and i had a sinful night of salmon and white wine and catching up on "entourage" and going to sleep by 11:30 has reconfirmed the following:

1. not a single "testimony" diamond has come across has shown actual "conversion" from homosexuality to heterosexuality; basically, they've all just put on a full-bodied Jesus condom and stopped having sex. that's fine. but this actually furthers the immutability of sexual orientation.

2. on a personal level, i can see that AEON needs to have it Biblically proved to him that homosexuality isn't immoral (though it's been demonstrated, repeatedly, in here); however, from a societal standpoint, the Bible is completely irrelevant to the discussion, and it's quite obvious that this is the only piece of "literature" that anyone has left to justify their prejudices. the Bible, while i find it interesting, is pretty much 100% irrelevant to either the laws that govern us or how i understand myself.

i would also add that the posts in here have done much to further the increasingly cultish practices of conservative Christianity. as it's tenets are increasingly debunked to the American population at large, i would imagine we'll see the already quite conservative elements become even more cultish and extreme -- like the thread about the Hindu who was harassed in a manner reminiscent of Mulsim extremists -- as they become further isolated from mainstream American culture in the upcoming post-Bush world.

also, as an aside, and i can find the research at some other point, i'd like to point out that the younger you go with Americans, the more "religious" they are in the broad sense -- go to church, believe in God, do charity work through their churches -- but the more liberal they are in their attitudes towards everything and everyone, especially gay people. for the under 35's, gay people can be "active" and be perfectly loved and accepted Christians.

i'm happy to say that some of the attitudes in here are increasingly anachronistic and will one day be as silly as those who argued against interracial marriage, desegregated schools, and women voters.

history is on our side. of that, i am certain.
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Old 07-14-2007, 10:43 AM   #302
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Originally posted by AEON


Jesus didn't call out every single possible sin during His ministry. Additionally, Jesus was more concerned about rescuing people from their enslavement to sin than about correcting their individual sins.
In other words, nothing.

Just like with abortion.

Amazing...........the religious right continue to focus on what Jesus DIDN'T give 2 hoots about and tend to ignore what he DID care about........
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Old 07-14-2007, 10:49 AM   #303
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Originally posted by LJT
Honestly it is none of God's business what your sexual orientation is, it harms no one, and God should stay out of it.
I think that God should be called on this faulty design, of course if nobody was there to answer the charge it wouldn't be a problem.
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Old 07-14-2007, 11:06 AM   #304
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Since diamond is nothing but a cowardly troll who can't actually post anything original...

So Called Ex-Gay Conversions

It's not possible to change someone's sexual orientation, but it is possible to make them miserable over it.

Fundamentalists play on the spiritually and emotionally wounded. Using the tenets of born-again fundamentalism, they try to convince dissatisfied homosexuals - usually young gay men just coming out who are stressed out by family pressure and society's intolerance -that they can change by suppressing their orientation.

The Fundamentalists prey on people who are unhappy. What they can't see or won't admit is that they themselves are the sources of this very unhappiness they claim to be treating.

Countless people have been misled by ex-gay ministries into believing that sexual orientation can be changed, only to find, even years later, that they had found only temporary happiness in the delusion that they had changed. These "ex-gays" no longer call themselves gay but continue to have same-sex feelings, dreams and arousal. Add to that the pain of many spouses of these individuals who thought they had married a heterosexual.

Anyone can suppress one's feelings and live a lie, for a time, but it doesn't work in the long run. Besides, living a lies doesn't seem like much of a Christian ethic. I've known dozens of gay men who at one time or another were pressured or lured into the fundamentalist-run ex-gay movement and all it caused them was more pain. No one I know ever changed. Not only that, no gay person I've ever met has known anyone who changed.

When you look at someone trying to be an "ex-gay" what you find are rather sad, desperate people playing mind games and semantics, no "cures" or lasting changes. The whole motivation behind the movement to change gays is political - fundamentalist and conservative politics dressed up in a lab coat.

The American Psychological Association (750 1st Street NE, Washington DC 20002-4242, Telephone 202-336-5700) has published a free booklet "Answers To Your Questions About Sexual Orientation And Homosexuality" I recommend it highly to anyone who wants unbiased information on this.

The above from: THE DAILY DISPATCH, Moline, Ill. August 3,1995, Guest column by William Stosine

Some so called "ex-gays" claim they have gone straight. However, the research seems clear that trying to change a natural sexual orientation out of fear of God and guilt seldom works. Perhaps it works for the few that weren't really sure or were there orientation was influenced more by emotional issues than biology. It seems clear however, most gays were born that way and trying to change them is forcing them to live a lie.

Some may leave the "gay lifestyle" by altering behavior, but that does not make them heterosexual. They simply become non-practicing gays, that's all. Despite "testimonies" to the contrary, there is not one documented, authenticated case of a actual change in sexual orientation. There has only been change in behavior. Healthy skepticism needs to be exercised of those claiming a heterosexual conversion.

One of many highly documented books on the failure of conversions is "One Nation Under God" which chronicles 40 years of people trying to find a "cure" for being gay. One example is Gary Busse and Michael Cooper the gay couple who founded Exodus, a "ministry" aimed at turning gays into "ex-gays." After a few years of teaching this dubious gospel - spread in pamphlets with titles such as "Unhappy and gay? Join the Exodus" -- they admitted to each other that they had fallen in love, quit their movement and started preaching tolerance and self-acceptance instead. They thus became "ex-'ex-gays.'" "One Nation" exposes many other such attempts of how change groups appropriate terminology of other fashionable therapies - calling themselves a "recovery movement", while actually peddling Victorian values and using fear of God and intimidation to scare people straight, which often leads to suicide, not change. At their most absurd, some suggest that what gay men supposedly ought to do is play football; and for lesbians, what they supposedly need is a makeover and a good manicure. This would be hilarious if it weren't so destructive to so many whose only sin is being just who God made them. Sadly those that turn to Exodus International or the now defunct Quest are only asking for more turmoil and inner-hatred. There are asking for a life of continued guilt and despair. That is all such groups can offer gays who are struggling to come to terms with themselves in a hostile and rejecting world (including, sadly, a church that often joins in the condemnation based on mistranslation and application of the Bible.)

Another example is Kent Philpott's book, The Third Sex, in which he gives the testimonies of six homosexuals who supposedly became heterosexual. Within a year after the book was published, all six of the people written about sent notarized affidavits to the publisher, stating that the book was untrue and that they were all still homosexuals. Nevertheless, the book continued to be printed and sold to an unwary public for eight years afterwards. To this day, people are "praising God" for changes that never took place. The continued publication of that book, along with its promulgation for eight years after having received written denials from the subjects themselves, highlight the extent of deception fundamentalists are willing to go to foster belief in a goal based on illusion rather than reality. With fundamentalism it appears that honesty and truth are expendable items.

The Kinsey Institute has had an open offer for nearly 40 years to report on a single case of a true change in sexual orientation, not just behavior. In 40 years there has not been a single scientifically documented case of changed sexual orientation.

On Prodigy Richard Kennedy Jr:
I worked on a national syndicated TV show. We contacted numerous groups to find individuals who were former homosexuals and were "cured." Getting lists of names, we called each one. One of our first questions was "did you consider yourself homosexual or bisexual before going in for treatment?" Everyone of the hundred-plus people we contacted (and remember our names came from the clinics) told us they were bisexual. We never found one who (out of 120 people) was "formerly gay" and "now is straight". We also asked the bisexual "cured" if they still have a sexual desire toward same sex contacts. Almost everyone who had been "cured" claimed to still have such desires. The handful of those "totally cured" were asked when they finished their treatment not one had their "cure" last more than 2 months. We never found a candidate for the "cured" homosexual program, so we had bisexuals instead.

Lee Sinclair on Prodigy in a public posts states:
"I spent 4 years in the ex-gay movement. I worked with the original founder of the Exodus movement. I am thankfully set free and gay through much therapy and spiritual awakenings. It was a devastating experience. It taught me at the time, to hate myself and others. There was very little 'love' involved with the direction of that church of thought. I now feel good about myself again when I quit trying to change into someone I'm not."

Thousands of gay and lesbian Christians who previously sought any means to change have now found healing from the self loathing society and the church has taught them to feel. They have gone on to develop Gay Christian organizations such as Dignity, Integrity, Affirmation, Evangelicals United, and the Universal Fellowship of Metropolitan Community Churches where they can truly share the Good News of God's love for all his people. They have further helped Gays and Lesbians learn to life lives of honesty and integrity, something which Exodus and the other "lie about who you are for the sake of acceptance: organizations can never do. No wonder 30% of gay teenagers attempt suicide when faced with this kind of guilt-instilling and self-loathing education. May God save His suffering gay children from the abuse and despair brought on by the well-intentioned, albeit ignorant and destructive, efforts of uninformed Christians and groups like Quest and Exodus International.

Here is a bibliography of even more material that debunks the "ex-gay" claims of groups like Exodus.

"Ex-Gays? There Are None" by Sylvia Pennington, Lambda Christian Fellowship, PO Box 1967, Hawthorne, CA 90250; Pennington worked for a "deliverance" ministry, but became convinced that it doesn't work nor does God demand it. The book is documented in great detail and discusses the Colin Cook/Homosexuals Anonymous scandal.

Colin Cook, a Seventh-Day Adventist pastor, lived a secret life as a homosexual. He later claimed he had been "changed" and set out to operate a "change ministry" called Quest, out of Reading, Pa. This farce of a ministry attracted desperate parents of gays. guilt-ridden young gay men, and closeted married gay men, taking thousands of dollars for a "program" that turned out to be nothing more than a way for Colin to continue to satisfy his own homosexual needs. One young man wrote, "To those Adventists who would damn me to hell for being gay, I'll look you straight in the eye and say I've already been there. It was a place called Quest." The sad thing is that this program was supported, promoted, and funded by the SDA Church. At the same time, the SDA Church was attempting to sue Kinship International, a legitimate support group which truly ministers to the spiritual, emotional, social and physical well-being of SDA lesbians, gays, bisexuals and their families and friends. SDA Kinship facilitates and promotes an understanding and affirmation within the SDA community through education, advocacy and reconciliation. SDA Kinship believes the Bible does not condemn, or even mention, homosexuality as a sexual orientation. Ellen G. White does not parallel any of the Biblical texts, which are often used to condemn homosexuals. Most of the anguish imposed upon God's children who grow up gay or lesbian has its roots in a serious misunderstanding of what the Bible says. Anyone wanting more information can call their hotline 1-800-4-GAY-SDA or write to Kinship, P.O. Box 3840, Los Angeles, CA 90078 (info posted by Juliana Harvard on Prodigy SDA Topic.)

"Can Homosexuals Change?" by Letha Dawson Scanzoni article in "The Other Side" magazines reprint of a wide array of articles dealing with Christianity and homosexuality. TOS, 300 W Apsley St.,Philadelphia, PA 19144. Not only deals with religious claims, but also psychological claims.

"The REAL Changes Taking Place" by Ralph Blair article in "Open Hands" the journal of the Reconciling Congregations Program of the United Methodist Church (Vol 2,#2, Fall 1986). Documents the failure of the ex-gay movement, noting that most of the founders of these groups (including those that founded Exodus) ultimately return to the gay lifestyle. Dr. Blair has done a lot of work in this area for many years, and published "Ex-Gays" in 1982. Can write Evangelicals Concerned, 311 E. 72nd Street., New York, NY 10021.
Change Minister Convicted of Manslaughter

Rev. T.V. Moreland, pastor of Suburban Baptist Church of Glendale Calf, was convicted 6/22/94 of involuntary manslaughter for the death of Michael Larkin, who died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound. Larkin had been under pastoral counseling from Rev. Moreland for several months prior to his suicide. Notes and diaries found in Larkin's home and testimony from his friends and family revealed that Rev. Moreland had attempted unsuccessfully to change Larkin's homosexual orientation. According to Reinzi Page, Los Angeles Country Assistant District Attorney, this counseling caused Larkin to fall into a deep depression and was the direct, material cause of his taking his own life.

And more research:
After more than 40 years of research on gender identity and sexual orientation, John Money, director of the Psychohormonal Research Unit of the John Hopkins School of Medicine, has observed that "it is no more possible to change a homosexual orientation into a heterosexual one than it is to change a heterosexual orientation into a homosexual one." He reports that claims of change in orientations when carefully examined turn out to be those of "persons who are bisexual to some degree, but are not 100% homosexual, nor 100% heterosexual."
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Old 07-14-2007, 11:15 AM   #305
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Originally posted by Irvine511
gay people can be "active" and be perfectly loved and accepted Christians.

I have never disputed this. Please note that the book you consider irrelevant is the same one that helped these Christians you speak of develop their loving and accepting attitudes.
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Old 07-14-2007, 11:34 AM   #306
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Originally posted by AEON


I thought I covered that when I discussed original sin. The basic premise is that everyone's human nature is in a fallen state, that it is basically "sinful" (or if you prefer - short of perfect). Only a new creation, a result of faith in Christ, is acceptable and pleasing to a perfect God. (Basic Christian premise)

So then:

Quote:
Originally posted by Diemen

If homosexuality really is just one other sin, then what possible justification is there for the amount of importance, the weight of its immorality, that it has been given?
??
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Old 07-14-2007, 11:55 AM   #307
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Originally posted by A_Wanderer
I think that God should be called on this faulty design, of course if nobody was there to answer the charge it wouldn't be a problem.
I get the don't steal, don't kill bit, they make sense and are highly logical statements for the basic running of society, the whole homosexual business doesn't really fit in, no one is harmed...killing and stealing is harmful, being in a committed, loving relationship between two men?...it apparently rips society apart...Something really doesn't add up.

Plus the whole we are a fallen people/ original sin nonsense...God condemns a whole people for the first man's sin? That sure is a very petty God. Lastly we have the whole sycophancy of having to worship him? He must also be very insecure to need such servitude to feel good about himself...God seems to act more human than we do at times.

Quite a faulty design if you ask me.
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Old 07-14-2007, 11:58 AM   #308
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Originally posted by joyfulgirl
??
It's not logical at all, but the contradiction comes as a matter of...you've guessed it...the medieval legacy of Christian stoicism.

While modern Christianity would state that all sins are equal, the height of Christian stoicism saw more than one "saint" state their view that homosexuality was the "worst sin of all." Again, this has to be remembered in the context of stoicism, which believed that all emotions--pleasure and pain alike--were Satanic. With their obsession with "lust," which they viewed as the worst emotion of all, they saw homosexuality as being nothing but unbridled emotion and lust. Kind of sounds like the kind of crap you read from diamond's "testimonials," ouais?

This legacy is why Christianity puts disproportionate focus on homosexuality. Combine that with most Christians' lack of understanding of their own heritage, and you'll understand why there's such doublespeak on this subject.
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Old 07-14-2007, 12:11 PM   #309
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Originally posted by Ormus


but the contradiction comes as a matter of...you've guessed it...the medieval legacy of Christian stoicism.

Or it might simply come from the writings of Paul.
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Old 07-14-2007, 12:18 PM   #310
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Originally posted by AEON
Or it might simply come from the writings of Paul.
If you mean Augustine of Hippo's extremist Manicheanist interpretations of Paul, already dominant in the medieval Catholic Church, coupled with St. Thomas Aquinas' application of Greek stoicism, then yes.

Even if you are not Catholic, you simply cannot ignore the impact of these pre-Reformation figures. They have substantially influenced how Christians look at their Bible and decide which verses are more important than others. Sure, you might nominally say that "they're all important," but, as you can see in any discussion of the Bible, certain verses are granted more weight than others. And that is the legacy of these medieval theologians.
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Old 07-14-2007, 12:28 PM   #311
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I should reiterate that, by "interpretations of Paul," I meant their tendencies towards asexuality as an ideal and their hatred of lust. I did not mean it as being specific to homosexuality, which I have consistently maintained and shown is a result of Biblical mistranslation.

As I have mentioned once before, Christian homophobia originated out of St. Peter Damian's 11th century book, Liber Gomorrhianus, which is, in itself, highly influenced by St. Augustine of Hippo's Manicheanist theology (of course, yes, he's got a great "conversion story," but a thorough analysis of Manicheanism and the theology that Augustine introduced into the Church reveals that he's as bad as those "New Christians" that Spain was paranoid about):

Quote:
Peter Damian's (1007-) Liber Gomorrhianus [Book of Gomorrah] is the most extend, and indeed the only complete. discussion of homosexual activity in the middle ages. Peter was one of the forerunners of the Gregorian Revolution of the late 11th century, a revolution marked by the effort to centralize Church governance, establish a distinction between lay and clerical states, and an apparent revulsion against human sexuality. The text presented here is just the first paragraph of the entire work. Note that although the author considers sex between men to be the most sinful, he includes, as did other medieval writers, masturbation among the sins "against nature".

The Different Types of Those Who Sin Against Nature
Four types of this form of criminal wickedness can be distinguished in an effort to show you the totality of the whole matter in and orderly way: some sine with themselves alone [masturbation]; some by the hands of others [mutual masturbation]; others between the thighs [interfemoral intercourse]; and finally, others commit the complete act against nature [anal intercourse]. The ascending gradation among these is such that the last mentioned are judged to be more serious that the preceding. Indeed a greater penance is imposed on those who fall with others than those who defile only themselves; and those who complete the act are to be judged more severely than those who are defiled through femoral fornication. The devil's artful fraud devises these degrees of failing into ruin such that the higher the level the unfotyunate soul reaches in them, the deeper it sinks in the depths of hell's pit.
Again, notice that "anal intercourse" is specifically judged as being "worse," which corresponds to what I said about homosexuality being judged as "the worst sin" in the Middle Ages.
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Old 07-14-2007, 12:59 PM   #312
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Originally posted by AEON
Is it "possible" this man is telling the truth? I am not saying he is, I am just wondering if it is possible. I mean, what does he really have to gain from such a story? And what is it to others if someone does "change their orientation" if it makes them happy or feel more "right with God." Isn't that what so many in here preach - to each thier own?
To each their own and trying to be something you aren't to please YOUR version of God are not the same things, don't pretend they are.

One only has to read a few lines in the article to tell it's bullshit.
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Old 07-14-2007, 01:00 PM   #313
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How is posting "article" after "article" and never answering anything not trolling?
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Old 07-14-2007, 01:36 PM   #314
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Originally posted by AEON


I have never disputed this. Please note that the book you consider irrelevant is the same one that helped these Christians you speak of develop their loving and accepting attitudes.


but you have -- you've basically said that we sin until we come to christ. i've been trying to get you to answer the question as to whether or not "coming to christ" would make one stop being homosexual, which is the implication, even though all of the diamond articles have yet to show anyone actually changing their sexual orientation. they become celibate, and that's just lovely, but the sin still exists.

as for the Bible, i'm not sure what your point is. to me, it is a book irrelevant to homosexuality, insofar as it is not improperly used to harm homosexuals and specifically to harm homosexuals who have been brought up in religious households and who wish to identify as christian.

i'd also like to see you begin to disagree with Ormus's scholarship. you've said you do, you've encouraged me to do research on my own (which would be interesting, but i don't see it as a good use of my time -- my acceptance of my homosexuality has nothing to do with the Bible, the Bible, in regards to this topic, interests me only insofar as, again, it is used to hurt people) but i don't see you engaging Ormus at all.

could it be that he has the stronger arguments?

until anyone -- and, seriously, anyone -- in FYM can begin to challenge Ormus on these points, and this includes past posters like NBC, then it appears to all in here that he is right, and those opposed are wrong, and, worse, too lazy to even try to challenge him.
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Old 07-14-2007, 01:42 PM   #315
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Originally posted by LJT
That sure is a very petty God.


he seems like kind of a genocidal asshole to me.

a lesbian friend, who is very christian -- but hers is a liberal church, so they focus on doing things like raising money for Save Darfur stuff -- said that she is continually struck by how un-Christ-like most of the Bible is.

so she focuses on Christ.
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Old 07-14-2007, 01:51 PM   #316
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Quote:
Originally posted by Irvine511




but you have -- you've basically said that we sin until we come to christ. i've been trying to get you to answer the question as to whether or not "coming to christ" would make one stop being homosexual, which is the implication, even though all of the diamond articles have yet to show anyone actually changing their sexual orientation. they become celibate, and that's just lovely, but the sin still exists.

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A Song of Hope
by Dennis Jernigan

View a pdf of this testimony. Copies may be distributed free of charge.

From my earliest memories, I felt different from other boys. I was gifted musically, and labeled "sissy" by other boys. By the time I was nine years old, I was playing regularly for the worship times at First Baptist Church in Boynton, OK. I learned to play the piano from my grandmother. We lived far from any town with a piano teacher, so I learned to play "by ear" by listening to melodies and mimicking them without seeing any music. Grandma was very patient with me as I practiced daily at her house, and I grew close to her. I didn't feel as close to my parents. We were not an affectionate family and I never remember receiving physical affection from my father. I found it hard to believe that he loved me, and I felt worthless. When I was nine years old, Jesus began calling me to Himself. On Sept. 8, 1968, I asked my mother how to be saved. She explained that we were all sinners and that we deserved to perish in hell. But, through the death of Jesus on the cross, we could come into a relationship with God. I asked Jesus into my life that afternoon and was baptized that evening. But, not perceiving love from my earthly father, I couldn't fully receive God's acceptance and forgiveness. So I tried to earn love by being "the best" at whatever I did. I made straight A's in school; my basketball team played in three state tournaments; I was valedictorian of my high school class. But what people thought was so good--my outward performance--only hid the deepest hurts of my heart. Rejection permeated every part of my life, including my sexuality. As a boy I needed a role model to show me the way to manhood. I began to yearn for intimacy with other men in perverse ways. Because of this wrong thinking, I came to believe that I was a homosexual.
At the same time, I knew God had something else for me. After I first became a Christian, I sensed Him telling me that someday I would have a large family of my own ... with nine children! That's crazy, I thought. How can I have children if I'm a homosexual?

At church, I heard people say, "All homosexuals should be shipped out of the country--they deserve to go to hell!" I felt condemned by their remarks, and had no idea where to turn for help. So I hid my same-sex desires through high school. In college, I discovered other students who were also struggling with homosexual desires. We gravitated toward one another, and I became entrenched in the physical and emotional aspects of homosexuality. But the more I believed homosexuality was my "real" identity, the more miserable I became.

During my sophomore year, I met the woman who would one day become my wife. I thought Melinda was the most beautiful woman I had ever seen. Something drew me to her, something I had never felt before. But, even though we dated on and off through college, I still had sexual encounters with other men on the side.

By my senior year, I was totally confused and frustrated. I decided that my life was not worth living. After all, I had begged God since childhood to remove these feelings and it seemed like nothing had happened.

One night during my last semester of school, as I sat in my little apartment alone, I decided I would rather be dead than living "this life." After extinguishing the pilot light, I turned on the gas in my little heater, lay down, and waited to die.

However, after a few minutes, I grew very fearful and turned off the gas. What does eternity hold? I wondered. Whatever it is, I'm not ready.

Soon afterward, I broke up with Melinda and told her I never wanted to see her again. That summer after graduation, I fully embraced my homosexuality and plunged into a three-month relationship with another man.

"This is who I am," I told myself. "I was born homosexual, and this kind of life is what God intended for me." But, instead of finding happiness, I just became more miserable.

I applied for seminary, thinking that more schooling might provide some answers. But three days before seminary began, a friend phoned me. "Dennis, God has brought you to mind a lot lately. In fact, I had a dream about you this week." In the dream, he explained, God was giving me all kinds of songs. I thought he was crazy, but was startled by his next remark: "What's more, my mother had the same dream this week!"

I abandoned plans for seminary and accepted this friend's invitation to live with his family in Oklahoma City. With my music degree, I had trouble finding a job, finally becoming employed as a school-bus driver. Between my morning and afternoon routes, I had several free hours which I used to cry out to God. I knew He was real, and that He was trying to say something to me.

At first I set my Bible on the piano and would sing the Psalms of David back to God. I saw that David had an intimate and honest relationship with God--something I had desired my whole life. David exposed feelings and attitudes that I thought "good" people would hide. Yet God called him "a man after My heart" (Acts 13:22). Soon I was singing my own thoughts and prayers, emptying my soul to Him as I exposed the hurts I had kept inside for so many years.

Then a well-known Christian group called "Second Chapter of Acts" came to our area and I felt an inner prompting to attend. During their concert, I was captivated by their sincerity and love for God.

Then, in the middle of one song, they suddenly stopped. "God has put something on my heart," one member said. "There is somebody here who is hiding something so hurtful, so terrible, that they would be devastated if anyone found out about it. But God wants you to know that He sees it and He loves you anyway." Then we were encouraged to lift our burdens up to the Lord as we raised our hands to Him.

This type of worship was new to me, but as I lifted my hands, God became more real to me than I had ever imagined! I realized that Jesus had lifted His hands for me--spreading them upon the cross. I knew that He was right beside me, willing to walk with me. I could be honest with Him.

"Lord Jesus," I cried inside, "I can't change me or the mess I've gotten myself into--but You can." In that moment, I turned everything in my life over to Jesus: my thoughts, my emotions, my physical body ... and my past.

For the first time, I realized that homosexuality was a sin that Jesus died for. I heard him say in my heart, "Dennis, I'm making you somebody brand new. My blood has paid your debt. You are free."

That night over 15 years ago was the beginning of my "incredible journey." For the first time, I saw myself as forgiven and cleansed. The power of homosexuality in my life had been broken. From that moment, Jesus began to change my sexually perverse thoughts and desires with holy and pure thoughts about what sexual love was all about.

During this same time in my life, a close friend found out about my past. When he confronted me, I ran from the house, certain that I would be disgraced. I looked up into the darkness of the evening sky, pleading with God to speak to me. My eyes were drawn to a puffy white cloud floating above. It looked like an old man with outstretched arms. Nearby was a smaller cloud in the shape of a lamb. As I watched, the man engulfed the little lamb in his arms.

Immediately I knew that God was demonstrating what He wanted to do for me in this time of need. I returned to the house to face my friend, who reaffirmed his love for me. And God began to bring others into my life who were willing to love me unconditionally as I sought complete healing.

One year passed, and I sensed God's prompting to contact Melinda again. I loved her and knew I wanted to marry her. After several months I proposed and she accepted. I assumed that, since I considered myself to be healed from homosexuality, there was no need to share my past with her.

In July 1988, I realized that God wanted to take the greatest failures and weaknesses of my life and make them my greatest strengths. Not only this, but if I confessed my past freely, Satan would have no ammunition against me. No longer would I have to live in fear of others finding out about my homosexual background.

So I shared my past with Melinda. Although she had questions, she was grateful that I felt secure enough in her love to share my most intimate past sins. Then, three days later, I spoke in church about my past--and something beautiful took place. Afterward, people began to approach me who had deep wounds from their past, such as homosexuality, incest, rape and abortion. As they confessed their sins and hurts, Jesus began healing them.

A year later, I realized in a new way God's calling upon my life. After leading worship at the Boynton Community Center in my hometown, one of my grandma's old prayer partners said to me, "Isn't it wonderful how your grandmother's prayers have been answered?"

"What prayers?" I asked.

"Didn't you know?" she answered. "Your grandmother told me she would stand behind you as you practiced the piano at her house each day, asking God to use you mightily in His kingdom to lead in music and worship!"

In the years since then, God has certainly answered those prayers. By His power and grace, God has enabled me to make over a dozen praise and worship recordings, with thousands of copies distributed worldwide. I have had the privilege of sharing my story with audiences all over the world through live concerts, television interviews like "The 700 Club," and magazine articles like Charisma & Christian Life. Today, my wife and I have nine children. He is bringing His perfect plan for my life to pass.

I have a Heavenly Father who will never leave me or forsake me (Heb. 13:5). I want to spend the rest of my life singing praise and worship to Him for all that He has done.
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Old 07-14-2007, 01:55 PM   #317
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diamond, if you want to participate in discussion, then I suggest you do so. Your drive-by article postings of what is essentially the same "point" over and over are unproductive and add nothing of value. If you have an opinion, voice it and then have the courage to back it up without resorting to spam. Thanks.
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Old 07-14-2007, 01:59 PM   #318
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Quote:
Originally posted by Irvine511
he seems like kind of a genocidal asshole to me.
The Hungarian mathematician, Paul Erdős, who was known for his rather idiosyncratic vocabulary, used to refer to "God" as the "Supreme Fascist" (SF). This was because when Hungarian troops set out to join the Germans in the attack of Yugoslavia in 1941, a prince of the Hungarian Catholic church was on hand to give his blessings, and apparently, such a scene apparently disgusted Erdős for the rest of his life.

I can understand Erdős' anger, but, at the same time, we have to separate "God" from what institutions say that He is. An outside example would be on the issue of Germanic mythology, something that I find interesting, much like J.R.R. Tolkien and C.S. Lewis enjoyed in their days. Over the last few decades, most mentions of Germanic mythology inevitably conjure up images of Nazism, as Nazi Germany heavily misappropriated its mythology for propaganda purposes. Tolkien, himself, is noted to have said that he hated the Nazis, if just for the fact that they ruined the reputation of his lifelong passion of Germanic mythology forever.

Likewise, I see much of the same with many people who despise what fundamentalist Protestantism has done to the reputation of Christianity, and the predominant sentiment seems to be that if you are sickened by the actions of fundamentalist Christians, then you must rid yourself of God. However, in the case of Germanic mythology, enough time has passed that the Nazi connotations are fading away, and more decent people are studying it again. Perhaps not enough time has passed, but I hope, someday, that people will be able to separate God and "true Christianity" from the sickening corruptions of it that many conservative Christians espouse.

God is not a genocidal asshole. He has just been a convenient banner for genocidal assholes to hold up high and escape criticism.
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Old 07-14-2007, 02:02 PM   #319
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Quote:
Originally posted by sulawesigirl4
diamond, if you want to participate in discussion, then I suggest you do so. Your drive-by article postings of what is essentially the same "point" over and over are unproductive and add nothing of value. If you have an opinion, voice it and then have the courage to back it up without resorting to spam. Thanks.
Can we also ban diamond as we would a spammer?
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Old 07-14-2007, 02:14 PM   #320
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Quote:
Originally posted by Irvine511

but i don't see you engaging Ormus at all.

I think Ormus and I have gone back and forth quite a bit on the subject in the past. I admit, I have nothing new to add.
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