I was on a recent facebook exchange with some people who were discussing Jennifer Knapp. Knapp is a Christian music artist who left the biz. a decade ago and has been hiding out in Australia. She says she left because of the strain of the business, perhaps disenfranchised and disillusioned. However, it also turns out that she is a lesbian, which would have been a difficult thing to deal with a decade ago. It still is, of course; but Knapp is recording a new album in the States, and she is fully disclosing her sexual orientation.
When I was in college, I liked Knapp's first album, but shortly thereafter I kind of lost all interest in Christian music. I liked Knapp's style, and I'll probably try to find that album and listen again. She always struck me as kind of raw and real.
The aforementioned facebook discussion was a long battle between those who were sympathetic to Knapp's sexual orientation and those who said that the Bible condemns homosexuality. The discussion quickly turned into a debate on what-does-the-Bible-say-about-homosexuality. Here was my brief response:
Many Christians on the issue of homosexuality are looking to turn to the Bible for an "answer" to the question "is homosexuality wrong/sinful, or is it okay?" But why do we use the Bible in this way?
Perhaps the Bible was meant to guides us into the tradition of the sacred faith, to demonstrate the differing and diverse ways that people of faith have dealt with their humanness and with God's God-ness and with the world's world-ness.
Maybe the Bible wasn't meant to be an answer key. Why do we feel such a pressure to "justify that position biblically!"? I think such an attitude is mistaken from the start. It cuts us off from the heart of faith, which is a spirit-led life. In my opinion, the New Testament was meant to anchor us in Jesus (the Gospels) and in the early church teachings and praxis (the rest of the NT). These stories and teachings are diverse. Early Christianity was very diverse.
The faith needs to be reinvented by each generation, by each person. It always has been this way, and it always will be.
So, I suggest that we both dig into the scriptures but also use the wisdom, love, and discernment of the spirit as a guide...all of this in dialog with each other.
What are your thoughts?
How does religion or Christianity relate to one's sexual orientation?
Do you agree with my thoughts on how the scripture texts should be used in the debate about sexuality?