I cannot imagine what standard conservative language does to LBGT people. Is there any way to state the conservative position *without* offending?
I would want to argue that the answer to this question is an unequivocal "yes".
The problem often with the stating of the conservative position lies in two key areas:
i) The conservative position is stated in conjunction with some non-scriptural (and sometimes prejudiced) objection to homosexuality (i.e. my complaint in this recent post)
ii) The conservative position is articulated in such a way that mis-states what the Biblical position actually is (i.e. "All homosexuals are going to hell".)
It IS possible to articulate the conservative position, but it can only be done within an articulation of the wider Biblical framework on sexuality and sexual expression. That’s what I increasingly try to do on my blog. It is not (IMHO) good enough to simply say. "The Bible says that sex belongs only inside heterosexual marriage". Our job as theologians / pastors is to explain *why* that is so. I have quite a few commenters on my blog who are actively gay, but I know that amongst them there are a number who respect me because I try to come to this debate with a more reasoned argument than "Stop doing that".
I’m increasingly convinced that here in the West we need to stop fighting the culture battles of the past 40 years, because when we do that we simply dig a deeper hole for ourselves. Our discussion should be theological, not sociological, because ultimately it is when the church has got itself sorted on this issue and presents a united witness to the truth of God’s design for us as sexual beings that we will be able to shine a welcoming light of resuce into a society that is messing itself up over sexual liberty.
What do people think?
Sometime in the next few weeks I will be posting more extensively on my position on how conservatives should be behaving and speaking in this debate.