Conservative Christians opposed to the full inclusion of LGBT people in the church don’t just have a problem with human sexuality and homosexuality. They have a problem with God, God who created human beings in his own image (Genesis 1.27), saw all that he had made and saw that it was very good (Genesis 1.31).
Conservatives have a problem with God who creates abundant life in rich and wonderful diversity and loves lavishly – grains of sand, hairs on head, lilies of the field, sparrows, gay men and lesbians, bisexuals, transgendered and heterosexuals.
The fullness and abundance of life of which Jesus speaks is there to be enjoyed and immersed in at every step on our journey through life. For any human being the discovery that there is abundance of life all around us awakens the abundance of life within us. Once awakened, it can flow lavishly, opening hearts, souls and bodies to the glorious awareness of all that is holy and infused with the presence of God.
God’s lavish, loving abundance is a problem for conservatives of a puritan persuasion. Conservative Christians are a problem for God’s creation and not the solution. Those who are drawn to respond to God in creative, lavish and unorthodox ways are a problem for conservative Christians.
Conservatives defend and are on the defensive.
They set out to defend ancient understandings. They major on the fall, sin and guilt and a dualistic view of the world, divided into good and evil, the sacred and satanic, the saved and the lost.
God is an object in creation, external to a person’s being, who issues rules and commandments for us to obey and against which we shall be judged, setting them all down in a book.
Conservatives have a fragmented awareness of life and fail to capture a vision of the wholeness of life in which everything is interconnected and holistic.
Their faith perspective is damaging to the health and well-being of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.
A dualistic world view is damaging for humanity, encouraging and fomenting conflict and division between nations, faith communities and within Christianity itself.
A dualistic world view is damaging for the planet, failing to see the deep interconnectedness and fragility of ecosystems and the unity in creation.
The world needs saving from a conservative Christian world view. Salvation comes through Jesus Christ in the living awareness of people who are deeply open to love, beauty, glory, holiness.