The New York Times > National > Lutherans Recommend Tolerance on Gay Policy
Wow. Lutherans? Those staid, pasty Scandinavian types that I grew up with? Yeah, Lutherans.
What I think is important here is not to show this as a "liberal" or "progressive" step, necessarily, but a step toward continuing to interpret Christ's words in a changing world. On NPR last night they spoke to one of the ministers involved- the name escapes me- and he said that the homosexuality the Bible preaches against is in the same pages that preach against sexual deviance, but that homosexuality as it is today should not be viewed in the same way.
Leviticus preaches against all dangerous behaviors- such as eating shellfish in the years before refrigeration. But homosexuality is now understood to not be a life choice, but an inborn trait that can, and does, lead to positive, lifelong, nourishing relationships. Just as we now know that not all shellfish will kill you, we know now that gay people are like us, only different.
There are, of course, people that will continue to reject these ideas. There always have been. But I hope it won't be be too long before they are pushed to the fringe and people like Rev. Payne will become the new Christian mainstream.
Until next time . .