Reaching out

I wonder if all Kirk Talley’s critics who complain he hasn’t adequately reformed and has failed to become sufficiently “Christian” again will book him back on their concerts now and reinstate his record deals and generally (re)certify him roadworthy now that he’s lending his support to these toxically delusional degayification programs from Focus on the Family? Because isn’t Jim Dobson the evangelical pope? “Reaching out to gays” the headline calls this. That’s a euphemism too far, I fear. (hat tip, Martin Roth)

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  1. Bob wrote:

    Don’t you know that Billy Graham is the evangelical pope… No wait - it’s Rick Warren…

    I’m not sure where all the hostility toward Dr. Dobson is coming from. Focus on the Family is a wonderful organization.

    Regarding the “toxically delusional degayification programs” - just today Mark Foley announced that he was gay - and it was a result of being molested when he was 13 by a member of the clergy.

    I personally am friends with a guy who is a twin. His twin brother is straight with a wife and kids. He himself is gay. He had his first sexual encounter with another older teenage boy when he was a teen.

    I don’t think it is entirely hereditary…

  2. smells wrote:

    HA! That’s hilarious. Not even the article or KT’s bio at love matters most says that he has been delivered from being [a homosexual*], however you want to put it. The article says, “Talley will discuss how he turned to faith to dig himself out of the depression that followed.” The bio says, “In addition to sharing the gospel message in song, Kirk now shares a personal message about how God lifted Kirk out of a horrible depression and gave him the desire to live when he wanted to committ suicide.” It’s wonderful to be free from depression and suicide, but how about being free from homosexuality?


  3. Bob wrote:

    Bob, it depends on whether the term “evangelical pope” is used for spiritual or political discussion. Mr. Graham has basically retired, so the “spiritual” part of evangelical popedom is up for grabs. Dobson, on the other hand, has put all his eggs in the basket of political revolution. His dad may have been an evangelist, but Dr. Jim is a psychologist, not a preacher, and has fallen prey to the belief that political change will result in a new revived Christian nation. I can say, he is sadly mistaken.

  4. jill wrote:

    Bob, do you think homosexuality is hereditary? My belief is , it’s a choice. I am not throwing stones, but, I agree with
    Smells. Being freed of depression and suicide thoughts is a whole lot different than being freed of homosexuality. God will deliver, if you truly want to be delivered.

  5. C.J. Russell wrote:

    I may not be the smartest person in the world, but in regards to KT and his “gayness”. One can only wonder why it is such an issue for those of us in the Christian community who are “straight”. KT has been through a personal “Hell” and his issues are between himself and God. I understand that he brought most of this Hell on himself when he went on the internet and opened himself up for all sort’s of things that I won’t go into here. I personally don’t think that he is now straight but if he lives a life that is committed to God and does not fall back into a former way of life, I do think that he should be given credit for trying to live a life and make a living doing what he has always done, singing and writing songs.

  6. anonymous wrote:

    CJ: How do you “fall back” into a life style if you never leave it? Maybe he has left it and I am just not aware.

  7. Bob (not a nut) wrote:

    I don’t know if homosexuality is hereditary (genetic) or a learned behavior. My guess is that it is a combination of both.

    If there is a ‘gay gene’, we won’t have to worry about homosexuality for much longer. Parents are already using genetic testing to screen embryos for gender and down syndrome. It’s only a matter of time before parents screen embryos for propensity to be gay…

  8. C.J. Russell wrote:

    How do you know that he has not left it? He may still be “gay” (genetically or what ever catagory you choose to put him in)but he does not have to act on those impulses if he chooses not to. This whole issue is very complicated but if a straight man/woman has the inclination to be promiscious then he/she can choose to either act upon that inclination or not. I see no difference. Wouldn’t both be considered immoral and wrong?

  9. anonymous wrote:

    CJ- Good food for thought and I would have to agree with you on the “acting on”your feelings. I guess part of my problem with this is, society is really pushing christians or the church or whatever we want to call it, to accept this lifestyle. I know we have to love the sinner and hate the sin, but I also think we have to take a stand. The world is trying to teach us to just “fly by the seat of our pants” or “whatever makes you feel good” philosphy.

  10. C.J. Russell wrote:

    Anonymous: I do understand where you are coming from, and I know that a part of society is trying to force us to accept this lifestyle. You can hate the sin but still love the sinner.We completely agree on this. I personally have a gay friend and he is one of the dearest people in the world (I am a female) He knows how I feel about his life style,we have had many intense conversations regarding this topic. He tells me that he would certainly not choose to be gay given the choice and I can only take him at his word on this. I certainly do not condone this lifestyle but I can’t reject a friend because of it. I think basically we agree on the issue..

  11. smells wrote:

    Let’s stop sugarcoating it, shall we? It’s not a lifestyle, it’s SIN. Acting on your feelings? Those feelings come from Satan. God did not give us those feelings naturally.

  12. C.J. Russell wrote:

    I don’t want to be redundant on this but I don’t think anyone was “Sugarcoating” anything. Gluttony is a sin, do you stop loving the FAT man because he can’t stop eating?

  13. Bob (not a nut) wrote:

    CJ - This is not the first time I’ve seen someone say that gluttony is a sin. It is listed as one of the ’seven deadly sins’ that was created by Pope Gregory, but I can’t find it listed as a sin in the bible. Can you?

  14. hhgregg wrote:

    Would everybody just mind their own business and quit trying to worry/figure out other people. GET A LIFE!! and get off of websites such as this, sogospelnews, etc. just wanted to let you know that i think most people in that whole SG industry gossip too much and aren’t doing it for the right reason!!! this is my first and last time on this sight. i don’t have time for this nonsense!!!

  15. Anonymous wrote:

    The hate that comes from some of you people amazes me. Kirk Talley has nothing to be sorry for because he had no choice in his sexuality. How he has handled it since is none of your business or mine. I heard one of our popular Southern Gospel artists recently say that he was surprised by the fact that suicide was the number one cause of death among teenagers and stated that if only they had known the unconditional love of God, it would have saved them. Gay teenagers commit suicide at a rate 3 or 4 times that of their straight peers. They don’t know the unconditional love of God, because the people who are supposed to be teaching them that are publicly condemning and ridiculing them. Your hate and homophobia is literally killing these kids.

    Jesus never addresses homosexuality, but he does discuss at length many of the sins that are rampant in your churches; adultery, judging others, hate, etc. Maybe the Christian right’s efforts would be much better spent cleaning up their own house before they try to clean up the rest of the world. I heard that one minister told KT that God could forgive anything but that. Does that mean he can forgive murder, rape, child molestation, etc., but not that same sex couple who is bothering absolutely no one?

    I am comfortable with both my sexuality and my faith. I know that I did not choose to be gay. I even spend a considerable amount of time bringing others into the Christian fold. Hopefully I do this without any of the hate, bigotry, and hypocrisy of most of you. Jesus said the greatest commandment was to love your neighbor. I don’t think he qualified it as to race, height, weight, sexual orientation, etc.

    It is a shame that I have to post this under “anonymous”, but I am afraid if I used my name, some of you might be burning crosses in my front yard.

  16. smells wrote:

    Miss C.J. I know you didn’t just pull out the gluttony card and compare it to homosexuality!! ahaha Gluttony is a lack of self control. God made man to have a NATURAL desire to eat. He made man to have NATURAL desires for women.

  17. Rick wrote:

    I agree with the post by “anonymous” that begins “The hate that comes from.” I have been gay ever since I can remember. It is not my “lifestyle,” it is my life. It is as inseparable from my whole being as it is from any heterosexuality.

    I have many gay friends who never would step inside a church because of the self-righteous attitude of many Christians they know or hear about. I can’t say that I blame them.

    Jesus never mentioned homosexuality. I wonder why it is such a pre-occupation with so many of His followers?

  18. C.J. Russell wrote:

    Smells: The “gluttony card” was used only as an example..and yes, God did give man a natural desire to eat which was sort of my point. Gluttony would be the Un-natural desire to eat all of the time and in abnormal quantities. This could go on and on, the point is We are not to Judge others regardless of what you may think “their” particular SIN might be. Many Hetrosexual Men have their own Un-natural desires do we need to Go there? I don’t think so.

  19. anonymous2 wrote:

    Excuse me if I am wrong, but, I do not see where anyone has said they “hate” KT or anyone else for that matter and Rick, everyone is looking for excuses not to go to church. The biggest being, self righteous, hypocritical chrisitians. I’ve heard that all of my life. The fact is, they just don’t want to go to church because they might just get convicted by the Holy Spirit.

  20. anonymous wrote:

    Whether or not being gay is genetic or a choice, Jesus said to be born-again. We are all born in sin.

  21. Jim2 wrote:

    I was reading an article by John MacArthur on the Crosswalk website today and thought his comments would have good application to this discussion:

    “The church will really change society for the better only when individual believers make their chief concern their own spiritual maturity, which means living in a way that honors God’s commands and glorifies His name. Such a concern inherently includes a firm grasp on Scripture and an understanding that its primary mandate to us is to know Christ and proclaim His gospel. A godly attitude coupled with godly living makes the saving message of the gospel credible to the unsaved. If we claim to be saved but still convey proud, unloving attitudes toward the lost, our preaching and teaching-no matter how doctrinally orthodox or politically savvy and persuasive-will be ignored or rejected.”

    Just a “for what it’s worth”

  22. Damon from KY wrote:

    Thanks, Jim2, for that helpful quote from MacArthur. For me, the only parts of this discussion (here or elsewhere is Christendom) that rub me wrong are the short comments that read as if this is an easy issue (i.e. it’s a choice; just change!). I agree that homosexual acts are sinful, but American culture is full of ingrained sinful living that cannot easily be turned off like a lightswitch (greed, lust, bitterness, gossip, racism, sexism, pride). Many good Christians struggle with these issues because they grew up in environments where these sins were not confronted or addressed. God can transform anyone from anything, but people who think that the best way to address homosexual sin is to tell the individuals to just “change” are not understanding how difficult that would be. If you have ever spoken to a openly racist Christian (very common among seniors in the south), you might have an idea how hard it can be to 1) convince the person they are wrong to begin with, and 2) make any progress towards leading the person to a healthy Christ-like view of other races. The mindsets (racist and gay) are different and I am not equating them, but the process and obstacles of confronting the sin are similar.

    Finally, Rick, I have never thought much of the “Jesus never mentioned homosexuality” argument. While homosexuality was not unheard of in the Roman Empire, no one was challenging the Jewish culture or leaders on whether it was consistent with their faith. Throughout scripture, homosexual behavior is condemned EVERY TIME it is mentioned. In a culture today where anything short of full endorsement is viewed as hateful, I think homosexuality has to be addressed, though with the same love and compassion we show with all other sinners who can be saved by grace.

  23. Jill wrote:

    Well said Damon. I was thinking about my own life as I read your comments. I do not have some sins in my life, but, sometimes my heart is bitter, filled with greed, and yes even jealousy and I don’t pray and read my bible like I should, but, God is so full of Grace and Mercy. I should show more of that myself. Thanks for the read.

  24. niven wrote:

    Avery…when you changed the format of your site were you expecting it to turn into another endless back and forth thread about homosexuality?…I liked it better when responders commented to and about you rather than each other.

  25. Thom wrote:

    Consider the scripture passage about eh adulterous woman who was brought to Jesus to be stoned. Jesus said “let he who is without sin cast the first stone” and he knelt down and began writing on the ground. What he wrote there we do not know. What we do know is that all her accusers walked away and Jesus spoke truth to the woman when He told her “neither do I condemn thee, go and sin no more” (paraphrase - I don’t condemn you but stop what you were doing. don’t do it again). We often hear people quote the first part of the passage. Everyone likes that “let he who is without sin cast the first stone”; non-believers love to quote that one when confronted with their OWN sin. But the more significant part of the passage is that Jesus said He did not condemn her AND told her to quit sinning. However you are tempted, whatver your weaknesses are, Jesus does not condemn you - BUT He also tells all of us to stop the sinful behavior. The Christian person with homosexual temptations and fixations must not act on his feelings and must submit to the Lordship of Christ - “bringing every thought captive”. Just like the Christian person with heterosexual temptations and lusty fixations outside of his FIRST marriage, must not act on his feelings either. Just like the gambler who must not put himself in situations to gamble. Just like the GOSSIP who needs to bridle their tongue. Just like the Christian who must choose not to gorge themselves with food and become a glutton. ( you don’t hear many preachers talk about gluttony) Just like the alcoholic that must choose each day not to drink. Just like the adulterous woman in the scripture - hear Jesus saying “I don’t condemn you - my desire is not to stone you - BUT, I am telling you to go and sin no more.” Choose this day whom you will serve - yourself (flesh, lust) or the Lord Jesus. It’s a daily choice for EACH of us - no matter your tendency, temptation or orientation. I think Kirk has been brave in this situation and must suport him with my prayers and kindness.

  26. chris wrote:

    i have been one of the many who grew up in the church and wrestled with homosexuality. i assure you the only choice is action. as i have learned, the attraction is permanent. i have prayed for God to “change” me, i have fought against the devil, and when that didn’t work i would seriously consider suicide because of how much i truly hated myself. those who have never been gay can never understand the rejection, humiliation, and self-loathing that we experience because we are told we are people God hates. and let’s face it: it may be true that every sin is equal in God’s sight, but in man’s sight homosexuality is infinitely more abominable than lying. and when you get right down to it, i could almost assure you that a majority of churches would be quicker to forgive a man if he committed a heterosexual sin than a homosexual one. i liken it to having a face: you may not want it, you may cover it up with a mask, but it is still there. and aren’t we taught that God looks at the heart?

  27. Rod wrote:

    WOW!!! I wonder where everyone went after Thoms comments…Man it is amazing how truth can silence so many people. This my first time on this site and I am amazed at the ignorance of so many people. By the way “GOD” calls homosexuality an ABOMINATION. However sin is sin, I do it, you do it…We all do. The point is to STOP DOING IT. :)

  28. Jas wrote:

    I’m a christian who happens to be lesbian. My faith in God is strong as yours but my understanding of it is, if God is loving and all forgiving the he’ll understand my love for my life partner for he is literally the only man in my life and I pray daily thnaking fo bringing such a wonderful person in my life, if my lifestlye is a sin then so be it and you are born with it, you cant hide the fact for what you are. And everyone sins the only unforgiveable one is suicide and it is I who will stand before him on judgement day to account for MY SINS and if being lesbian is a sin then I’m going to hell but I am not sorry for it. JUST GET OVER IT!!!!!!

  29. Rev Paul Holbrook wrote:

    Kirk Talley deserves every help in restructuring his life in a sinless, morally upright way. Dr. Dobson and Focus on the family have tried to raech out to people in that condition for many years. They should be commended, not maligned. Homosexuality is a sin. God does not care what we think about it. He has never asked for our oppinion. He demands our service. He is God.

  30. Bev wrote:

    In God’s eyes, a sin is a sin. Unless Kirk is God, he sins. Why do all of us other ‘Christians’ have to basically persecute Kirk for admitting he was gay? His sin is no greater than any other sin known to man in the eyes of God…He was ‘done wrong’ and fully judged by the industry and no one can do that but God. Kirk strives to live a christian life just like the rest of us. Why has he been so judged??? What about the liars, thieves, killers, adulterers and adulteresses? They have broken the 10 Commandments and have been forgiven! Judgment comes only on Judgment Day…

  31. SDC wrote:

    Have you ever known anyone gay? Spend any quality time with them, learn about their life and what led them to their choices? Ever take some time to live outside your proverbial box? Ever study religious history outside your denominationally-swayed documentation? Be like Christ and wake up.

    Leave KT alone, at least he was real and honest about his lifestyle, which is (again) more than you could say about 97% of Christians today.

    Besides, who did Jesus hang out with back in the day? Think about it. And put down the deepfried twinkies already.

  32. danno wrote:

    homosexuality is a choice just like all other sin. How is it possible to ask for forgiveness if u are not willin to change? I dont hate homosexuals but im not gonna participate in what they do. I think that if u are gonna represent GOD then i think that u should do just that and commiting an abomination isnt even close. And by the way there is no such thing as a carnal christian. To be a christian is to be Christ like. Yes God forgives but only if we are first willing to change.

  33. SDC wrote:

    Ugh, so many opinions and disagreements under the name of “Christianity” it’s embarrassing. Thanks for the reminder as to why I walked away from it.

    This is all very entertaining but seriously? From an outsider’s perspective: Find some unification. Stop confusing the masses you claim to be trying to reach. Otherwise, what’s the purpose?

    Everyone thinks they’re right–so who’s wrong? What’s the sense of all this arguing??? Your egos???

    Obviously Danno has God’s private extention here. Care to share or do you like being so elite? Get off your homophobe horse and stop being afraid of something you know so little about. Run at your fears for a change. Think outside the box and find that GOD is really a helluvalot bigger than you can possible imagine–or control, for that matter.

  34. Mark wrote:

    Hereditary? No. Generational curse? Most Likely, but we all make our own choices.

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