The New York Times reports:
"LA MIRADA, Calif. — As a young, gay Christian activist, Matthew Vines considered it a victory just to get into a room at a conservative Christian university here with four influential evangelicals who disagreed with him over what the Bible says about homosexuality."
Youth ministers and chaplains are studying how to respond to students struggling with their sexual identities. Governing boards are re-examining their policies on allowing openly gay people in Bible studies. And pastors are preaching and writing about, rather than ignoring, the recent books arguing that the Bible can be read to support same-sex marriage.Few are dropping their opposition. But aware that they are seen by many as bigots, some evangelical leaders are trying to figure out how to stand firm without alienating the rising share of Americans — especially younger ones — who know gay people and support gay rights, or who may themselves come out as gay.“Because this is such a relatively new thing, pastors and church people want to know, ‘How do we navigate this, and how do we navigate this well, without doubling down or capitulating?’ ” Glenn T. Stanton, the director of family formation studies at Focus on the Family, said in a telephone interview from the organization’s headquarters in Colorado Springs.
"Mr. Vines did not really expect to change minds at Biola. The night before, at a packed meeting in Culver City for supporters of his organization, the Reformation Project, he explained that the first step in changing churches would be to identify the “silent sympathizers” and encourage them to speak up."
As a child, Mr. Kaltenbach attended a gay rights march with his mother, and he recalls protesters yelling that God condemned the marchers and throwing urine on them. (His book, “Messy Grace,” part memoir and part advice for pastors on ministering to gays, will be published this year.) He says evangelicals should welcome gay people with “acceptance, but not approval.” Openly gay couples attend his church, he said, but are not allowed to serve on the leadership board.At Biola, Mr. Kaltenbach sat in a club chair directly across from Mr. Vines. To Mr. Vines’s right was Frank Sontag, a Christian radio host wearing jeans and cowboy boots, who said he would not pass judgment on gay people because he, too, was a sinner.
They all agreed that, in the Bible, God did not destroy Sodom and Gomorrah because of sodomy, but because the residents were guilty of arrogance and greed. But other passages were not so easily dismissed.
Acceptance IS approval. To claim it is not is to redefine terms and play word games. That's an underhanded, sinful and manipulative way to accept such heinous sin, as well as reject church discipline. Sexual sin like sodomy and pedophilia is damnable sin and worthy of being ex-communicated from the local church as 1 Cor. 5 shows.
The following excerpt is from "Under Constraint," a sermon preached Sunday morning 28 April 1878 at the Metropolitan Tabernacle in London:
I cannot endure false doctrine, however neatly it may be put before me. Would you have me eat poisoned meat because the dish is of the choicest ware? It makes me indignant when I hear another gospel put before the people with enticing words, by men who would fain make merchandise of souls; and I marvel at those who have soft words for such deceivers.
According to modern efficiency he ought to have said, "Let him be kindly spoken with in private, but pray make no stir. No doubt the thought was original, and we must not question his liberty. Doubtless, he believes the same as we do, only there is some little difference as to terms."
This is treason to Christ, treachery to truth, and cruelty to souls. If we love our Lord we shall keep his words, and stand fast in the faith,coming out from among the false teachers; nor is this inconsistent with charity, for the truest love to those who err is not to fraternise with them in their error, but to be faithful to Jesus in all things.