AN OPEN APOLOGY TO DR. LAND FOR UNINTENTIONALLY MISREPRESENTING HIS VIEWS ON MORMONISM
BY WM. DWIGHT MCKISSIC, SR.
OCTOBER 25, 2012
I offer the following email exchange that will clarify Dr. Richard Land’s views on Mormonism and my response:
First message from Sam Dahl:
Dr. McKissic, just wanted to send you a quick FYI about Dr. Land’s position on Mormonism. Here are a few quotes from the article linked below that he wrote for The Christian Post that might give some clarity.
When the theologically uninitiated hear this answer (that Mormonism is a cult) they immediately think “Branch Davidians” or “Jim Jones,” and there is a cognitive disconnect. When most people hear Mormonism described as a “cult” they think, “No, that can’t be right. A Mormon is president of my Rotary Club or coaches my children’s soccer teams.”
The problem is that while Mormonism may technically be a cult theologically, in that it has moved well beyond the parameters of orthodox, apostle’s creed Trinitarian Christianity, it does not behave as a cult culturally or socially.
For nearly two millennia the basic Trinitarian formulation of the Christian faith has been accepted by Catholics and Protestants alike and it is not open to self-definition or reformulation. Christianity has objective, theologically defined parameters which Mormonism has clearly moved well beyond.
Mormons, Christianity and Presidential Elections
This quote from another Christian Post article, Mormonism Debate: What Is a Cult?, may also shed further light on his position.
Due to the misunderstanding that could result from the two different definitions of cult, Land explained, he does not use the word “cult” to describe the LDS Church, “even though it’s theologically accurate.””
Please let us know if we can serve you in the future.
Office of the President
The Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission
Thanks for the “Richard Land on Mormonism” email. This is a more complete expression of Dr. Land’s stand on Mormonism.
While I believe that the timing is inappropriate to come forth with the distinctions on Mormonism (leaves one open to the charge of pushing a political agenda) and the designation of Mormonism as a “fourth great Abrahamic faith” is historically, theologically and biblically inaccurate, I do see now where, clearly, Dr. Land views Mormonism as a cult, but simply prefers not to use the term for the reasons stated in the email.
To the extent that my comments on this matter at SBC Voices and my blog have misrepresented Dr. Land (not being heretofore apprised of the information contained in the aforementioned email), I sincerely offer an apology for stating emphatically that Dr. Land was denying that Mormonism is a cult.
Finally, I would like to post this email I’m sending you and the one you sent to me on my blog and submit it to SBC Voices (both unedited) requesting they publish it also. Without your approval, I will not post it. But with or without approval, again, please accept my apology.
Final Response from Sam Dahl:
Dr. McKissic, thank you for your email; Dr. Land appreciates your response and apology. You certainly have his and my permission to publish those emails in the aforementioned places. As another FYI, when it comes to the question of timing, the first time we can ascertain that Dr. Land suggested that perhaps the most charitable way to view Mormonism is as the 4th Abrahamic religion was at the end of 2007 when he was interviewed on December 26 for a documentary titled Article VI that was released in 2008. We appreciate your gracious humility and certainly have no hard feelings or ill will toward you. As always, we stand ready to serve you if there is any way we can. Thanks,
Office of the President
The Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission
CLARIFYING THE DISTINCTION BETWEEN STETZER AND LAND ON MORMONISM
BY WM. DWIGHT MCKISSIC, SR.
OCTOBER 22, 2012
I recently published a Blog Post that inaccurately and unfairly conflated the published positions of Ed Stetzer and Richard Land as it relates to how these Southern Baptist Convention leading figures view Mormonism. The purpose of this writing is to briefly and accurately make the distinction between their beliefs crystal clear and to publically apologize to Ed for having done so.
Here is my quote unfairly conflating and equating Stetzer’s and Lands’ positions on Mormonism:
“Even Ed Stetzer and Richard Land have taken a softer view on labeling Mormonism as a cult. Why? Stetzer and Land want to label Mormonism a fourth great world religion. Why? Unbelievable! Are Southern Baptists that desperate to elect Mitt Romney?”
Now to set the record straight, Stetzer makes it undeniably clear that he maintains that Mormonism is a cult, although he makes a case for distinguishing between Mormons being viewed as a theological cult as opposed to a sociological cult. Stetzer then goes on to argue for Mormonism to be viewed as another world religion without denying that Mormonism is a cult. Here are Stetzer’s exact unedited words as they appeared in a Christianity Today article:
“Mormonism fits the traditional evangelical definition of a ‘theological cult,’ but that is not what most Americans think of when they think of a cult; they think of a compound in Waco. I think it is more helpful to call it a different religion, like Islam and Judaism, and to share the gospel of Jesus with them accordingly.”
Ed Stetzer, president, LifeWay Research
Based on the above quote, I labeled Stetzer’s position as taking a “softer view on labeling Mormonism as a cult.” He objects to that characterization of his position, and I agree with him. He does think it is “helpful to call it [Mormonism] a different religion, like Islam and Judaism, and to share the gospel of Jesus with them accordingly.” I hope this clarifies Stetzer’s position and underscores the point that he never denied that Mormonism is a cult.
Richard Land unequivocally refers to Mormonism as a “fourth Abrahamic faith,” without labeling Mormonism a cult. Here are Land’s exact words unedited from http://apprising.org/2010/08/31/sbcs-richard-land-says-mormonism-fourth-abrahamic-faith:
“I think perhaps the most charitable way for an evangelical Christian to look at Mormonism is to look at Mormonism as the fourth Abrahamic faith.” …“Not a Christian faith.”
By referring Mormonism as “the fourth Abrahamic faith” and not labeling it a cult, it appears that Land is trying to dignify and legitimize Mormonism to make it more palatable to the SBC and the masses. Land’s view of Mormonism is equally as damaging to me as the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association’s view. They have essentially adopted the same position. I hope this clarifies this matter.
THE JEFFRESS-GRAHAM SWITCH AND THE BLACK VOTE
BY WM. DWIGHT MCKISSIC, SR.
October 20, 2012
While touring the Dead Sea Scroll Exhibit recently, at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary with President Paige Patterson, Governor Rick Perry, and twenty other Dallas-Ft. Worth pastors and Christian leaders, I was privileged to meet for the first time the pastor of the First Baptist Church, Dallas, TX, Pastor Robert Jeffress. Recognizing who he was from television appearances and public photos—upon seeing Dr. Jeffress, I immediately extended my hand and said to him, without introducing myself, “I appreciate your voice of righteousness to our nation.” He also recognized me upon sight and almost simultaneously said to me, “Pastor McKissic, I’ve quoted you across this country, ‘Don’t equate my skin with your sin.’” I then told Pastor Jeffress, I’d heard he was using my quote, and I was thankful that he confirmed that. That’s basically the sum total of our brief chance meeting.
Dr. Jeffress was indeed a voice for righteousness when he described Governor Romney’s Mormon faith as a “cult.” In October 2011, while endorsing Governor Perry for President, Jeffress told reporters, “Every true, born again follower of Christ ought to embrace a Christian over a non-Christian.” Jeffress referred to Romney then as a “conservative out of convenience” who “does not have a consistent track record on the subject of marriage, on the sanctity of life.” He further stated, “I just do not believe that we as conservative Christians can expect him to stand strong for the issues that are important to us.”
Fast forward to today and Dr. Jeffress is still a voice of righteousness believing that Mormonism is still a cult, and that civil rights and gay rights are not proper parallels.
However, Jeffress has made a major switch regarding his initial theology/politics, inasmuch as he now embraces Romney for President-even as a “non-Christian” member of a “cult” over President Barack Obama who is a Christian, but does not hold a biblical worldview with regard to same-sex marriage and abortion. Perhaps, therein lays Jeffress dilemma—an ultimate decision to support Romney.
I can appreciate Pastor Jeffress not compromising his conviction—and one that I share—that Mormonism is a cult. However, my conscience and conviction will not allow me to vote for an individual who on more than one occasion has expressed a certain antipathy toward the poor and who, when given an opportunity to distance himself from the racist history and teaching in Mormon documents in a 2008 Tim Russert interview, Governor Romney refused to do so. Mormon “sacred text” refers to “dark skinned” people as “cursed,” “unattractive,” “filthy,” “despised” and “loathsome.” Voting for Mitt Romney given these viewpoints, expressed in his “Bible,” is a switch and compromise that I simply cannot make. I would rather fight than switch.
I applaud and appreciate Dr. Jeffress being a voice of righteousness on pro-life issues, gay-marriage issues and the civil rights vs. gay rights issue. However, I would be less than honest if I didn’t acknowledge that Pastor Jeffress’ switch is seen by many in the Black Community as inconsistent at best.
Evangelist Billy Graham historically has been a highly respected figure in the Black Community. Long before it was popular, he insisted on his meetings being racially inclusive, befriended Black preachers (including Dr. King) and singers and publically disagreed with Dr. W.A. Criswell’s segregation views, prior to his “open door” conversion. Billy Graham was highly regarded in the home I grew up in and viewed as a man whose heart was in the right place regarding issues of race.
However, Billy Graham’s recent departure from his lifelong practice of not engaging in partisan politics, and his removing the Mormon Religion from his website as a cult has generated a lot of discussion among Black pastors. The impression Graham’s decision leaves is that for the sake of electing Mitt Romney as President, he is willing to declassify Mormonism as a cult and engage in partisan politics for the first time in 94 years of living.
The question many are asking is, “why”? And, why now? If nominal Southern Baptists as Bill Clinton and Al Gore occupied the White House at the current moment, the question is would Billy Graham have made the same decision? Even Ed Stetzer and Richard Land have taken a softer view on labeling Mormonism as a cult. Why? Stetzer and Land want to label Mormonism a fourth great world religion. Why? Unbelievable! Are Southern Baptists that desperate to elect Mitt Romney?
The Southern Baptist Convention unanimously approved a resolution condemning President Obama’s position on gay marriage and his view of equating gay rights with civil rights—but refused to even bring to the floor for a vote a resolution condemning racism in Mormon documents. The question is why would Southern Baptists approve of one, while rejecting the other? Could it be that on both sides of the racial divide, that our theology is driven more by race, culture and economics than it is by theology, righteousness and the common good? The SBC’s refusal to condemn Mormon racist text aligns itself with the BGEA declassification of Mormonism being a cult. Both decisions were driven by placing partisan politics above theological integrity and accuracy.
This election will leave the country and Christians racially polarized and divided even more so than the 2008 Election. The tacit evangelical endorsement of Mormonism will pay long term negative consequences on evangelicalism and politics. The Graham announcements affirm Black Christians, who vote for President Obama because it demonstrates that political, cultural and economic expediency, sometimes trumps theological and moral considerations in voting decisions. We see this on both sides of the racial divide.
I’ve been asked the question several times, why is it that Black Christians vote for Democratic candidates overwhelmingly in light of the Democrats position on gay rights and abortion? Black Christians tend to prioritize social and economic justice issues (which are also life issues) and they consider those moral issues as well. Black Christians tend to compromise their faith on pro-life and gay rights issues in order to vote for the party that they perceive will best deliver social and economic justice. The White evangelical church in this election is willing to compromise their beliefs on Mormonism and racial and gender accountability in order to support Mitt Romney. Black and White Christians vote for the party and the president that they perceive will best empower them. They simply view empowerment and priorities differently.
For those who ask, how can President Obama be a Christian and hold non-Christian views on abortion and gay marriage?: The answer is the same way Anglo Baptists/Evangelical slaveholders were Christians but wrong about slavery and denying women the right to vote. Make no mistake about it: President Obama and the Democrats are wrong on the issues of gay marriage and abortion. But just as Billy Graham is willing to declassify Mormonism as a cult in order to promote Romney, Blacks have prioritized economic and justice issues in order to elevate poor and historically oppressed people. I have burdens in my bosom concerning both parties. Therefore, I will be content to cast a write-in vote for Jesus Christ, and live with the results of who God sovereignly allows to become the next President.
If President Obama wins, I will take solace in the fact that Republicans will not be rewarded for their blatant disrespect of President Obama. Such as shouting “you lie” to him from the hall of Congress; the Governor of Arizona shaking her finger in his face; Laura Ingram referring to the President as, “you fool”; and I could cite many more disrespectful and racial attitudes and actions displayed toward President Obama, including declassifying Mormonism as a cult.
If Mitt Romney wins, I would hope that he would honor his commitment (though his history does not give me full hope) to stop same-sex marriage in its tracks and actually lead the Congress to adopt a constitutional amendment against same-sex marriage. If that happens, I will be eternally grateful and give God praise that my grandchildren will not grow up in a world where same-sex marriage is considered legal, sane and normal.
Although I’m not a Calvinist, I am perfectly content to trust the sovereignty of God in this election and praise His Name regardless to the outcome. I simply pray as a nation and as a church that we can come together in unity when the election is over.
Bart Barber, Dave Miller and Howell Scott need to be taken seriously regarding this matter of sounding a clarion call concerning the declassification of Mormonism as a cult sooner, rather than later. Is a cult only a cult until one of its members wins a major party presidential nomination and their opponent is a Black Christian who believes in gay marriage and abortion?
Pastor Jeffress and Evangelist Graham have a right to endorse and vote for Mitt Romney for President, just as Pastor Otis Moss and Pastor Frederick Haynes have a right to support President Obama for reelection.
What Billy Graham does not have the right to do is to declassify Mormonism as a cult without the larger evangelical community throwing the “red flag.” If evangelicalism does not throw the “red flag” before the election, that is even a greater sign of our political and racial divide. We ought to be able to come together in unity and make it clear that Mormonism is a cult even if Black Christians and White Christians vote for different candidates. The unity of the faith is at stake here (John 17:21)!
THE MOSS “EPISTLE” vs. THE TREASURE BOX
EQUIPPING BLACK CHRISTIANS TO RESPOND TO PRO SAME-SEX MARRIAGE PASTORS
BY WM. DWIGHT MCKISSIC, SR.
October 4, 2012
In the aftermath of President Obama’s public affirmation of same-sex marriage, a high profile Black pastor not only supported the President’s position, but also gave a robust defense of the government sanctioning of same-sex marriage. Pastor Otis Moss III serves as Senior Pastor of the Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago, formerly pastored by Rev. Jeremiah Wright. Pastor Moss is making a mark and stamp on the social order, contemporary culture and the Black church at large as did his predecessor and his beloved father, Rev. Otis Moss Jr., a retired Baptist pastor and iconic Civil Rights leader during the King era.
Pastor Moss is affable, articulate, and academically credentialed, and has a winsome personality. His position on same-sex marriage and his rationale for supporting the President’s position is gaining traction in some Black pulpits and churches. There are Black pastors being swayed by Moss’ rhetoric and reasoning, and some congregants are giving a hearty Amen, to what heretofore would have been blasphemous in most Black pulpits and churches; the approval of same-sex relationships. Indeed, Moss was one of eleven Black pastors who recently held a press conference in Washington, D.C., encouraging Blacks to approve of legalizing same-sex marriages in an upcoming Maryland election, and again providing a rationale for his position that’s beginning to catch fire in the Black Community. That press conference was a sight that I thought I’d never see in my lifetime—Black pastors endorsing homosexuality.
Bob Ray Sanders, a highly respected Fort Worth Star Telegram news columnist refers to Moss’ published statement in support of same-sex marriage as, “Chicago black preacher’s epistle on gay marriage is a must-read.” Sanders appreciatively applauds Moss’ position.
I may be the lonely voice of one, crying in the wilderness; but I feel compelled by the Spirit of God and the Word of God to say to Black Christians that the Moss “Epistle” is diametrically opposed to and contradicts: The Bible; Jesus’ teaching on marriage; Martin Luther King’s published viewpoint on homosexuality; the landmarks of the fathers; the official position of the nine major Black denominations; and the early church fathers, neither is his view supported by the Constitution of the United States. Therefore, while respecting and loving our President and Pastor Moss, we must love our God and our Bible—more.
When the President or a Pastor makes bold declarations contrary to the Word of God, Christians must demonstrate love, loyalty and allegiance to their faith, above their race, and above what any man might say, “…let God be true but every man a liar… (Romans 3:4)” The church should not be moved by Moss’ Bible-less and baseless rhetoric from the “landmarks”—the Bible, prominent Black historical figures and the current Black denominations have set. I want to leave a record for future generations that the “Moss epistle” was way outside of mainstream thinking and theology in the Black church community. What does the Moss “epistle” actually say about this subject matter?
PASTOR MOSS’ “EPISTLE” REGARDING SAME-SEX MARRIAGE
- Moss supports the notion that same-sex marriage should become the law of the land based on his belief that it is somehow permitted in the Constitution. Moss believes that same-sex marriage is a civil right. He and President Obama refer to marriage between two people of the same sex as marriage equality. Moss believes that to deny “same gender loving couples” the right to marry is comparable to denying the slaves freedom.
- Moss believes that since President Obama is the President of the United States and not the pastor or “Bishop of the Christ Holiness Sanctified Church,” he is President of all the people—including homosexuals who want to marry. Therefore, the President is not bound by the church’s beliefs regarding homosexuality. He is bound by the Constitution to provide equal protection and equal/civil rights to all persons, regardless of sexual preferences; thus, the term used by proponents of same-sex marriage—“marriage equality.”
- Moss believes that rights governing marriage in secular society and civil government don’t have to comply with or march in lockstep with rites for marriage in the church. In all fairness to Moss, neither does he believe that the government should force the church to perform same-sex marriages.
- Pastor Frederick Haynes provides logic and arguments similar to Pastor Moss, but adds Jesus never addressed homosexuality. The implication being, if Christ never mentioned homosexuality why should Black preachers be as up-in-arms about it. Moss and Haynes refer to homosexuals as “same gender loving couples.”
This summarizes the “epistle on gay marriage” by Pastor Moss. Some of the language and logic articulated by Pastor Moss are things “new and old” (Matthew 13:52). Many of the arguments he and Pastor Haynes espouses are something “new” to the Black church. Some of their arguments are old.
THE “TREASURE’ BOX ANSWERS THE MOSS “EPISTLE”
“Then He said to them, “Therefore every scribe instructed concerning the kingdom of heaven is like a householder who brings out of his treasure things new and old.” (Matthew 13:52)
Thank God that the story on “same-gender loving couples and marriage equality” does not begin nor end with the Moss “epistle.”
Jesus referenced the knowledge that’s retained by students (disciples) in the Kingdom of God as a “treasure.” Jesus identified his disciples as “scribes,” “disciples,” or students of the Kingdom of heaven (Matthew 13:52). And as a disciple (student) of the Kingdom of heaven, one becomes a “householder” possessing a “treasure.” The “treasure” is knowledge, and according to Jesus the treasure contains “things new and old.” The knowledge of the Kingdom will never be outdated.
When persons raise new questions or present new arguments that contradict the Bible and our faith, Jesus taught that we could find the answers to those who raise the opposing questions and present opposing arguments, in the “treasure” that’s in our household. The “treasure” contains His words, the Word, and a timely word—“things new and old.” I want to respond to the Moss “epistle” by reaching in the “treasure” box and seeing if there are answers to the Moss “epistle.” After all, he raised new issues to support “same-gender loving couples” and referenced old issues—slavery and the civil rights struggle in America.
The “treasure” box that Jesus referred to and Moss’ “epistle” are in total disagreement with each other.
I. In response to Moss’ belief that the same-sex marriage is a civil and constitutional right, in the “treasure” box that Jesus said would be in my house, I’ve found the following answers:
A. Even if the Supreme Court rules that same-sex marriage is authorized by the Constitution and is a civil right that must be granted, the “treasure” is clear; when man’s law contradicts God’s law the citizens of the Kingdom of heaven (Philippians 3:20) are to obey God rather than man (Acts 5:29).
B. The request for two persons of the same sex to marry is asking for a special right, not a civil right.
C. If any two people who “love” each other are authorized by the Constitution to marry, that opens the door for a man to marry his sister; his daughter; his mother or grandmother; his fifteen year old stepdaughter; or two wives. Why not, if the issues is simply “marrying who you love” or “marriage equality”? I’m curious if Moss would approve of a man marrying his sister, or his biological or step daughter in the name of “marriage equality” and civil and constitutional rights? And if not, why not? Wouldn’t we be denying those people “marriage equality” and their civil rights?
II. In Response to those who compare civil rights to gay rights, I’ve found the following answer in the “treasure” box in my house:
A. CIVIL RIGHTS ARE ROOTED IN MORAL AUTHORITY; GAY RIGHTS ARE ROOTED IN A LACK OF MORAL RESTRAINT.
Moral authority was on the side of the abolitionists and slaves. Moral authority was on the side of women and those who supported the suffrage movement. Gay rights are not rooted in moral authority. Gay rights are rooted in what the Bible calls the “lust of the flesh” (I John 2:16).
Clarence James, a Temple University professor who has written books about the Black church and homosexuality stated, “The homosexual movement has nothing to do with civil rights. The civil rights movement was about positive freedom, which is freedom to rise to the highest levels of capabilities. The homosexual movement is part of the sexual revolution. It is about negative freedom and the freedom from moral restraint.”
I’ve often read and heard homosexuals say that they discovered that they were homosexual at 18 years of age, 25, 33, etc. I don’t know of any Black people who didn’t discover their Blackness until they were 25.
I’ve met former homosexuals. I’ve never met a former Black. You cannot compare civil rights with gay rights because my Blackness is a result of my birth. Homosexuality is a result of wrong decisions. My Blackness is a skin issue; homosexuality is a sin issue. Therefore, you cannot compare to two.
If I could be a homosexual by nature, I could also be a polygamist, adulterer, or pedophile by nature. Should we pass laws to approve of these behaviors? Again, at the roots of the Civil Rights movement is skin; at the roots of the gay rights movement is sin–Big Difference!
B. CIVIL RIGHTS ARE ROOTED IN CONSTITUTIONAL AUTHORITY; GAY RIGHTS ARE ROOTED IN CIVIL ANARCHY, LIBERAL COURT DECISIONS AND RENEGADE CIVIL AUTHORITIES THAT DEFY THE LAW.
The goal of the Massachusetts court (the first court to approve same-sex marriage) decision in their own language was to limit the influence of historical, cultural, and religious reasons for preserving traditional marriage. This was a judicial fiat.
The 14th and 15th Amendments secured citizens’ rights for people of all shades of skin, including the right to vote. There are no constitutional guarantees to people based on their unnatural, unwise, unhealthy, unholy and unbiblical desire to marry people of the same sex.
The civil rights movement was birthed in the church. The gay rights movement was birthed in the closet. At the root of the civil rights movement is constitutional authority. At the root of the gay rights movement is constitutional anarchy and carnal antinomianism—lawlessness.
C. THE SUFFERING OF THE HOMOSEXUAL DOES NOT COMPARE TO THE SUFFERING OF THE BLACK MAN IN AMERICA.
When homosexuals have spent 200 years in slavery, then we can begin discussion of parallels. When homosexuals have been legally defined as 3/5 human, then we can begin the discussion of parallels. When homosexuals have been denied the right to vote and own property because they are homosexuals then we’ll begin the discussions of parallels. No White lesbian has ever been murdered for whistling at another White girl. Black men have been murdered for perceived interest in White women. Ask members of the family of Emmet Till. The comparison of civil rights to gay rights is extremely offensive because of the disproportionate suffering issue, and the comparison of race to sexual preference.
D. THE GAY RIGHTS MOVEMENT WAS BIRTHED IN THE CLOSET; THE CIVIL RIGHTS MOVEMENT WAS BIRTH BY THE HOLY SPIRIT (II Cor. 3:7).
The Apostle Paul stated in Romans 1:27, 32, “Likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust for one another, men with men committing what is shameful …” In Romans 1:32, Continuing to speak of these men who engage in these same shameful homosexual acts the Apostle concludes that these men, “who knowing the righteous judgment of God, that those who practice such things are worthy of death, not only do the same but also approve of those who practice them.” God’s Word not only disapproves of homosexuality, His Word also disapproves of those who approve of homosexuality.
III. Self-identified homosexuals are American citizens and should be entitled to all the rights, privileges and protections of any American citizen. Their constitutional and civil rights are based on their citizenship, not their sexuality. President Obama is President of all the people. But when he and Moss emphasize that he is the President of “same-gender” loving people that is an attempt to dignify, legitimize and affirm homosexuality, in a way that it has never been affirmed historically in America. Homosexuals are to be valued and respected as human beings and citizens. There is no legal, moral, historical or constitutional basis to respect them on the basis of their bedroom antics.
Martin Luther King led a march on Washington to demand that the United States make good on a check-guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution guaranteeing civil rights for all her citizens. Dr. King said the American check for equality and justice issued to her Negro citizens had come back marked “insufficient funds.” The homosexual community is trying to cash check on the constitution that has never been written to them. Their account was never constitutionally opened.
For Moss to argue that President Obama is President of everyone—including homosexuals—is a true statement; but the statement in and of itself does not grant legal status to homosexuals. The President is also the criminals’ (child molesters, murderers, thieves, bigamists) President. This statement about the President being the President and not Bishop of the Sanctified Church is a nonsensical, meaningless, empty statement. That statement by Moss only appeal to the most gullible, and non-critical thinkers.
At the root of Moss’ statement and the President’s, as both being professing Christians, is the notion that homosexuality is not a sin. It is no small matter that a high profile pastor and a President who professes to be a Christian—and I don’t question or doubt Moss’ or President Obama’s Christianity—but I do question whether or not they believe—and the eleven pastors at the D.C. Press conference—whether or not a homosexual act between “same-gender loving persons” is a sin. I wish Pastor Moss would answer that question. I wish President Obama would answer that question. I wish the pastors at the press conference would answer that question: Is a sexual act between a “same-gender loving couple” a sin?
IV. I agree with Pastor Moss that the government can’t and shouldn’t dictate to the church that they must perform same-sex marriages. However, I disagree with Pastor Moss that Christians should not vote their values, views and convictions regarding this matter. To not vote your convictions regarding this matter is like not voting your convictions on civil rights. Everywhere where there has been a state constitutional amendment against same-sex marriage, Black people have voted overwhelmingly in favor of disapproving of same-sex marriage. Romans 1:32 is clear that believers should not approve of homosexuality or give approval to those who approve of homosexuality.
W.E.B. Dubois makes it very clear that moral matters can and should affect voting matters and decisions. As a matter of fact, Dubois chose to not vote in the 1956 presidential election because of both parties being morally corrupt. However, I am advocating that people vote in the election—vote their conscious and vote their conviction, even if that means having to vote for a third party candidate or write in a candidate. Vote for President Obama if that’s your choice. Vote for Mitt Romney if that’s your choice. Vote for a third party candidate if that’s your choice. Write in a vote if you must, but by all means–vote!
I essentially agree with Pastor Moss’ distinction between “rights” and “rites” when it comes to the marriage law. There is a difference between an ecclesiastical ceremony and a secular ceremony. The marriage “right” is secular and granted by law, but there is no Federal law at this point authorizing this “rite.” There is no federal law that supports a “sacred” or “secular” “rite” or “right” same-sex marriage. Therefore, it is illegitimate.
V. To pastors who say that Jesus never mentioned homosexuality, I have found the following answers in my “treasure” box: Jesus addressed homosexual marriage when He addressed authentic marriage in Matthew 19:4-6. There He makes it clear marriage is between one man and one woman. Jesus also pointed out that when He returns, marriage will be an issue, (Luke 17:27) “they were given in marriage,” and He specifically mentioned, “As it was also in the day of Lot” (Luke 17:28)…on the day that Lot went out of Sodom” (Luke 17:29). We all know that homosexuality was an issue at Sodom. Indeed, the root word of sodomy is Sodom, which is a legal reference to homosexuality, derived directly from the Bible. Revelation 11:8 is clear that the spirit of Sodom would be prevalent just before Christ declares the consummation of the Kingdom of God (Revelation 11:15). When Jesus sanctioned the Old Testament when He often said, “It is written,” that would also be an affirmation of OT passages disapproving of homosexuality. In Mark 7:21, Jesus mentions “fornication” as a derivative of “evil thoughts” out of the heart of men. The Greek word translated fornication would include all types of sexual sins including homosexuality. Therefore, it is simply not true to say that Jesus never spoke about homosexuality. This is a desperate attempt to give approval to what Jesus clearly disapprove of. Jesus never mentioned pirates or pedophiles; shall we then approve of those behaviors?
THE VOICES OF THE DEAD SPEAK OUT OF THE “TREASURE” BOX
1. Martin Luther King, Jr. was not supportive of homosexual relationships. In response to a boy who wrote Dr. King admitting to having an attraction to other boys, just as he also was attracted to girls; Dr. King had this to say:
“Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. was writing an advice column in 1958 for Ebony Magazine when he received an unusual letter. ‘I am a boy,’ an anonymous writer told King. ‘But I feel about boys the way I ought to feel about girls. I don’t want my parents to know about me. What can I do?’ In calm, pastoral tones, King told the boy that his problem wasn’t uncommon, but required ‘careful attention.’ ‘The type of feeling that you have toward boys is probably not an innate tendency, but something that has been culturally acquired,’ King wrote. ‘You are already on the right road toward a solution, since you honestly recognize the problem and have a desire to solve it.’” (religion.blogs.cnn.com/2012/01/16/what-did-mlk-think-about-gay-people) (Emphasis mine).
2. George Washington Carver was a strong Bible-believing Christian in addition to being an agricultural and science professor at Tuskegee Institute. He taught Sunday school weekly on the campus of Tuskegee Institute. He clearly viewed Genesis 19 as an illustration of the judgment of God on a nation that embraces homosexuality. While discussing Sodom and Gomorrah, Dr. Carver asked his class, “And what happened to these wicked cities?” He viewed the desire and activity of same-sex involvement as “wicked.” He then used his scientific talents to cause a sudden burst of flames and fumes to shoot up from the table, and the Bible students fled. He sure knew how to make Sunday School interesting and to illustrate his point. George Washington Carver taught against the practice of homosexuality. (George Washington Carver; An American Biography, by Rackham Holt, 1943, Doubleday, Doran and Company, Inc., Garden City, NY, p. 198)
3. In September 1929 Rev. Adam Clayton Powell, Sr., published a series of sermons on sexual perversion, (as per an article written by John McWhorter entitled, “What the Harlem Renaissance Teaches about Gay Rights”). Powell stated that homosexuality was one of the powers that debased a race of people and could destroy the Black family.
“Powell considered this ‘perversion’ to be ‘one of the most horrible, debasing, alarming and damning vices of present-day civilization.’ He decried ‘contact and association’ with gay people, considered them a threat to the ‘Negro family.’ He hated homosexuality for ‘causing men to leave their wives for other men, wives to leave their husbands for other women and girls to mate with girls instead of marrying.’”(http://www.theroot.com/views/what-harlem-renaissance-teaches-us-about-gay-rights
4. Augustine said:
“Those shameful acts against nature, such as were committed in Sodom, ought everywhere and always be detested and punished. If all nations were to do such things, they would be held guilty of the same crime by the law of God, which has not made men so that they should use one another in this way (Confessions 3:8:15 [A.D.400]).” (http://www.gcmwatch.com/97/an-unbroken-witness-against-sexual-sin)
I give God thanks for Pastor Moss and his gifts and leadership. However, on this issue he has chosen to stand on the wrong side of the Bible, the wrong side of history—the fathers, and the wrong side of God’s will for future generations. May the Lord use this writing to speak to future generations His will regarding same-sex relationships (Psalm 145:4)!
Pastor Moss is attempting to remove the “ancient landmarks” that the fathers have set. This could prove to be very dangerous and dastardly to the Black community and a death blow to the Black family. I hope that he will reconsider his position.
“Do not remove the ancient landmark Which your fathers have set.” (Proverbs 22:28)