An Open Letter to Christians: Your Behavior Is Completely Unlike Christ

radical religious right christians joni ernstLet’s remove all the legal arguments from this debate. For just a moment, forget the first amendment entirely. Instead, I want to talk with you about you, your church, and the community you represent.
Your stance on LGBTQ issues is ripping the Church apart. Christians are arguing in public forums, condemning one another to Hell, simply for supporting equality. They are taking it upon themselves to judge one another over well-reasoned theological differences. Overall church attendance is in significant decline, especially among Generation X and Millennials, and right now it looks as if the Methodist Church may split.



I don’t think this necessarily requires any “compromise” on your sincerely held beliefs at all. You just need to make a dramatic change in the way you express it. Why do you not handle this in the same manner you deal with divorce and other intensely personal situations? I see so many people who are being alienated, and it saddens me. You are separating families, forcing parents to choose between the Church and their children, between Grace and love.
The church has become a parody of itself, rife with hypocrisy and judgments. The message of Jesus’ love is drowned out by boycotts and screams, chants and threats.
I wish some very open minded folks could go read what I do and see how all of this translates to the greater community. Go see what is being said by atheists, agnostics, and just non-church going people. I wonder what kind of effect it would have on you. If your hearts have not hardened with self-righteousness, I think they would shatter.
You Christians are supposed spread God’s love by showing it and teaching it and living it, not by legislating it and bullying it and beating it into people. That is why you are getting so much push-back. That is not persecution. That is rejection.
In my mind, the question is very simple. Does the Church want to tell the world, “Jesus loves you, and so do we”? Or does it want to tell the world, “Jesus loves us no matter what, but Jesus hates you, because we deem it so”? The latter is the current message the world is getting: We pick and choose the laws we apply to ourselves, which are not the same as those we apply to the world. And I have news for you. It is not winning souls. It is pushing people further away. That causes them to push back even harder.
I wonder what would have happened if there had been no need to fight on equality? Would we need a special class to protect LGBTQ (in the few places we do?) Or for persons of color? Or for women? Those protections exist precisely because someone fought so hard against them. The Church is creating its own prophecy of persecution.
Society was first to recognize the equality of women, of persons of color, and now of LGBTQ. The Church has always been last. Must we keep dragging you kicking and screaming?
Matthew 22:36-40 “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

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3 Comments

  • When I hear “I’m a Christian, blah, blah, blah….” I just look at them and say….
    “Well so was Judas and we both know how that story ends.” This will be relevant to my message here.
    The reactions are hilarious. I’m a trans Christian….yet even another label. I was baptized in the Church of Christ and began training as a preacher in my Church. We are known for knowing our scripture, quite well I might add. From the begining I was tought to consult the Bible in scripture for direction. Made sense to me so I did. While in training I began really studying the word. Even checked other lauguages to form a consensus from my sources regarding interpretation.
    I found myself forming many questions. I had been in the TG community before joining the church but just wanted what I thought was a normal life as my birth sex. I said I wasn’t going to be TG anymore and thought everyone else in my world would be happy and my life would improve. Joining the church and leaving my old world behind did give me momentary mental relief….no longer hiding from anyone.
    As I was told would happen (and admit I willfully ignored my own internal voice) my transgender expression nreds returned. I internallized my struggle to not out myself to the congregation. I didn’t crossdress….it had never been about the clothes. I wasn’t privately doing anything other than now having to deal with myself internally. Scripture seemed to now be condemning me according to “their” interpretation. No longer did I have zeal for God. My mentors in the church who told me to read it for myself were now telling me what I was supposed to interpret from my studies. I kept hearing them demand I not question them…that I was new and didn’t know what I was talking about. I never shared my TG status with them because it would have only fueled their bias.
    It finally came down to me being asked to shut up and quit putting their souls in jeopardy of their promised salvation. I felt more empty than ever in my life. I said nothing and simply walked out. Out of a congregation of 32 members not one contacted me to offer help to restore my faith in the church. The same people that I had fellowship and did volunteer work with.
    So today I do the only thing they taught me….read for myself. In my continued studies I have learned where I went wrong.
    I put my faith in those around me rather than God. I went astray but always had the option of questioning things…more so to strengthen my faith rather than dispel it. It turns out that my faith never was placed in the right place nor was it placed in the right people.
    The Church will greatly benefit from preaching Chtist-like teachings of love, compassion, charity, and faith in Him. The trend now seems to be a church on every corner selling a diffetent message. I’m suprised no one has tried to franchise them yet! Oh yea, they cant.
    They can’t ALL agree on the same menu!

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