Grand Rapids East Report #7
This next topic from the Grand Rapids East Report of 2016 is rather puzzling. There is more on that in the response section below.
Statement For Same-Sex Marriage: Loader's Comments
“Loader: In Romans 1, therefore, the most likely explanation is that Paul assumes that people were created male and female with heterosexual orientation of their natural sexual emotions. Those who denied God’s reality had perverted minds and engaged in perverted acts: they worshipped idols. As punishment God gave them over to perverted minds with perverted passions and desires whose intensity they followed by engaging in perverted acts, females with females, males with males, and both for their mindset and their actions they stand condemned. Paul does not differentiate between people of different sexual orientation, either to exempt homosexual persons, or to make sure both are condemned. He may have known that some made such differentiation, but he would not have believed it. Nor does he focus only on pederastic relations. Without differentiation he condemns all with such sexual attitudes and desires and all acts which give expression to them. He does so within the context of deliberately highlighting what he assumes his hearers will agree is outrageous sin, in order then to bring them to see that in fact all are under sin and in need of the gospel, including those so willing to condemn (2012, 326).”
Response: Loader Is Ambiguous
It is not clear exactly what the point is that Loader makes here, nor why The East Grand Rapids Report includes it in a section entitled, “Perspectives from Biblical Scholars.” Is his statement in defense of same-sex marriage or opposed to it? That section of the report contains statements by Gagnon who is opposed to same-sex marriage and also by Brownson who is in favor of it. Some of Loader’s comments speak of Paul condemning people who practice these acts and without differentiation. Those comments sound like Loader takes the historic position on marriage. However, since Loader makes comments in support of same sex marriage in other places it is assumed, he is in favor of it here. For that reason, this quote from the report is included in the pro same-sex marriage section.
In the absence of a clear statement in favor of same-sex marriage this section must be considered inconclusive. To consider it true could only be done on the basis of wishful thinking, in the absence of reason and logic.
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