This is good.
The differences are part of our separate identities, and I shouldn't be surprised that he holds the views he does - they are the product of authenticity and integrity, which we both strive for.
The topic that highlighted the differences is the vote in General Synod on clergy pension provision for surviving civil partners, and whether this means that the Church of England is now implicitly recognising equivalence between heterosexual marriage and homosexual civil partnership.
The issue that triggered the conversation is whether or not homosexuality is a sin, and how we use our theology to lead us to conclusions, or whether we seek to support conclusions we have already reached (if you like co-incidences/God-incidences, this is the third time in two weeks that this has been the topic of discussions). I refer you to one conversation .
My correspondent and I differ in our conclusions. I think this is because we each read scripture in the light of our own life-experiences; like Luther “I can do no other”, and to claim otherwise is to claim an objectivity that stretches credulity.
In the case of this argument, one life-experience included watching two people grow from young children to adulthood, and realising many years before they became overtly aware of their sexuality that they were likely to be homosexual. This convinced me that, at least for some people, homosexuality is as inherent in their nature as any other trait, and certainly one of the mothers recognised this when her child was about 11 years old.
Thanks to a popular atheist, Ichneumon wasps have also been much commented on, as if the inclusion in nature of creatures that defy our personal will for order, or our understanding of ‘good’, are an aberration and proof positive of the non-existence of God. If we don't or can't understand then we must be deluded also stretches credulity - but that is a side issue.
Psalm 139 says, “I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.” It reminds us that we cannot form God in our own image, heterosexual or anything else. If I am wonderfully made, then so are those two young adults I referred to earlier, and they are loved by God.
If we genuinely think that a couple of verses in Leviticus, taken out of context, are an instruction for us to determine sin in others, and then sepak out against it, then what are we to do with men who cut their hair and beards?
If we are to look at the context in which certain decrees were issued (e.g to counter worship of Molech) and instead, determine which are the great themes of the Bible and what Jesus came to do, I wonder whether we might join with Peter is saying,
"You are well aware that it is against our law for a Jew to associate with a Gentile or visit him. But God has shown me that I should not call any man impure or unclean. So when I was sent for, I came without raising any objection. May I ask why you sent for me?”
***edit*** Thanks to phil for this post, which I've only just found.