The other day I was asked to sign a petition against the Latvian pride parade. Now since I do not understand latvian very well and couldn’t read the exact wording of the petition I might be making a chicken out of a feather here…

I am told that last year a pride parade was held in Riga, and “all” (There are not so many n latvia, at least not openly) the gay people came out to make a statement. However a large group of Christians also turned up to oppose the event, with placards and banners featuring words of hatred and homofobia.

I am appalled at this, why oh why would we, as Christians, do such a thing. Are we not told that this is a spiritual battle not a carnal one? (Eph 6:12) Arent we commanded to love our neighbor? (Luke 10:27) And Jesus goes even further saying we shall Love our enemies (Mat 5:44) so that we are without excuse.

Everytime we infringe on the rights or freedom of speech of one of these groups we end up not allowed to preach the good news in the end. The battle is not against the gay community, the battle is for God. Yes, they are sinners, but so are we! We DO NOT FIGHT SINNERS, we fight sin. Our job is not to silence the ones who do not agree our job is to bring the message of God to those who have not heard, or have not understood. It is a message of good news and not a message of rules.

Now there are some militant extremist in this movement organizing the pride festival who are organizing trips out to schools and they are openly saying “We will take your sons and daughters”. And our gut reaction is to say don’t let them go to the schools. But again, then why should we be alowed in the schools with our counter cultural message of love and hope? No the answer is not to stop them from speaking, the answer is that we need to be as zealous and strategic as they are. For every school they visit we need to visit three… And not to speak against them, NO! To speak for God!

We must be careful that we are fighting the right battle. The battle for the freedom of speech, the battle for the freedom of thought, the battle for Gods free people!

We must be careful that our message is a message of good news, not a message of hatred. {{I tell you I think there is greater hope for a gay person to enter the kingdom of heaven than for one of these Christians}} (who preach hatred.)

If anyone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen. (1 John 4:20)

1 John 2:9-11 where angels fear to tread

1 John 3:15 the legacy of cain

Having said all that, naturally I would plead with the arrangers of the pride festival to make their stand with dignity and integrity. We do not need naked people parading the streets in broad daylight, we do not need any more promotion of porn and explicit materials in our streets. But I do trust that however militant and extreme these people might be, they are intelligent rational people and will try to make the festival a celebration of freedom and not an orgy.

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Tony

There is a very definite point to make. Jesus in my favourite quotation is John 8:11-12.

“…..Neither do I condemn you, go and sin no more.” Jesus clearly says to sin no more.

They have to hear the truth!

Patrik Olterman

Oh I do agree with you there, but as we both know Jesus spoke here with ever so much love and compassion, not with hatred and disdain.

The truth must always be told, but should that truth not be told by someone in a close relationship with the person instead of with shouted words of hatred, and an offensive slogan slapped on posterboard.

What I react on is the lack of love and compassion! The unchristlikeness in the way this issue is all to often handled.

Patrik

This must be one of the most insightful pieces I’ve ever seen from any christian evangelist.

Even though I do not share your faith; I’m very convinced that coming the end of days, love will always stand in front leaving hate behind.

Preaching love will help you find your forgivness …

Juris

I can agree with Patrik about this to be fighting wrong battle, as this brings no solution just making more noise over it. And we as christians can learn from these people who organize such a parade, and do stuff for God’s Glorry in any possible way.

[…] My heroes July 20 2006 10:43 am Tags: Battle report Post Meta : Trackback Permalink Our purpose is LOVE! span.indent {padding-left: 0em;}var verse1 = ‘Matthew 5:43-4843 “You have heard thatit was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ 44 But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45 so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven. For he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust. 46 For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? 47 And if you greet only your brothers, [1] what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same? 48 You therefore must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.Footnotes[1] 5:47 Or brothers and sisters. The plural Greek word adelphoi (translated “brothers”) refers to siblings in a family. In New Testament usage, depending on the context, adelphoi may refer either to brothers or to brothers and sisters’;span.indent {padding-left: 0em;}var verse2 = ‘Mark 12:30-3130 And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ 31 The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.”’;This is a follow up to this post on the gay pride parade in Riga. […]

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