Tom Gilson

Sorry, Jen Hatmaker: Your Biblical Grounds For Affirming LGBT Still Imply Something Wrong With LGBT

(Update, November 4: Some readers have faulted me for not making all of my terminology crystal clear in this post.  Comment 3 contains my further explanation.)

Jen Hatmaker says she thinks LGBT relationships can be holy.

How so? Her husband, Brandon, explains the “bottom line” on Facebook: “We don’t believe a committed life-long monogamous same-sex marriage violates anything seen in scripture about God’s hopes for the marriage relationship.”

There’s something oddly contradictory going on there.

It’s not the first time I’ve seen it; it’s there almost every time a Christian speaks of the Bible’s purported support for homosexual relationships. It was prominent in Matthew Vines’s book on the subject.

I’ll show you the contradiction in a moment. First I need to put it in context of the LGBT package.

LGBT: The Package Deal

I few days ago I asked if anyone could explain the ideology behind the LGBT movement. Skep wrote in reply, “there is no ideology. Rather, there are ideologies. We’re not a monolith.”

I’m sure that’s true in some senses, but there’s still a monolith there: the one expressed in the abbreviation LGBT, and even in the expanding alphabet universe of LGBTQIA and the like. It’s the unspoken yet powerful and apparently universal assumption that L, G, B, T, and often Q, I, and A necessarily belong together.

The Urban Dictionary certainly assumes it’s that way: “LGBTQIA is a more inclusive term than LGBT for people with non-mainstream sexual orientation or gender identity.” They all go together.

Doubt me? Think how far you’d get dropping one of the letters. Does anyone support LBT without G? LGT without B?

No, L, G, B, and T are a package deal. (Q, I, A and a few others often get invited along with them.)

The Hatmakers support it as such. I’ve already noted Jen’s opinion that “an LGBT relationship” can be holy. Brandon makes three references to “the LGBTQ community. ” Both of them clearly accept LGBT as a package.

The Problem With the Package: B Doesn’t Fit

Given the social reality of the package, let’s go back now to that other opinion Brandon Hatmaker expressed: “We don’t believe a committed life-long monogamous same-sex marriage violates anything seen in scripture about God’s hopes for the marriage relationship.”

Let’s take that at face value, along with his and his wife’s support for the package. (The contradiction should be coming into view by now.)

The Hatmakers say homosexuality is biblically fine as long as it’s practiced through a committed lifelong monogamous relationship. That gets them through L and G, but it gets them nowhere toward affirming B. Monogamous means “with one.” Bisexual means “with two.” Two is greater than one. (Hey, I was good at math in school, too.)

If monogamous relationships, and only monogamous relationships, can be godly, then bisexual practice cannot be godly. There’s no getting around the conclusion: it’s sin.

Therefore, based on the Hatmakers’ view of the Bible, it might be possible to affirm LG, but it’s still impossible to affirm B — which means it’s impossible biblically to affirm LGBT. And yet that’s what they try to do.

(The T part is an entirely separate discussion; to go into it here would take us on a tangent.)

Why Do Brandon and Jen Hatmaker Affirm the “B” in LGBT?

So what can gay-affirming Christians do about the B? Clearly no one could support “LGT-but-not-B.” Imagine the outcry! “They belong together! You can’t tear the package apart that way!”

But I wonder whether the Hatmakers have thought it through enough to see the B problem. If not, they wouldn’t be alone. Based on email conversations with Sean McDowell — who has read a lot more on this than I have — I don’t think many people are raising that question. I suspect it’s because we all tend to take the package for granted. It’s time we gave it real thought instead.

Yet there’s something else going on besides. Brandon Hatmaker wrote in his article,

Listen, regardless of what we think, many of our churches are not safe places for LGBTQ. Every Sunday, people searching for hope and community sit in confusion, condemnation, private pain, and the fear of being singled out, publicly humiliated, and being rejected. The exact opposite of what we all hope for.

There’s a very positive motivation at work here. No one needs to be condemned, humiliated, or rejected. Too often the church has done that. The Hatmakers want to help: they want to bring LGBT persons into the community of faith. They’ve found a way to interpret Scripture (they think) that relieves at least some L and G relationships of the guilt of sin, opening the door for their full participation in the body of Christ without shame, without guilt, and without the need to let go of relationships they value.

But what do they do with the B? It’s still sin — even on their LG-affirming interpretation of God’s word.

A Better Answer

There’s a better answer: God loves sinners.

The church is for sinners. Guilty people. People with shame in our lives. Humiliation, even.

We can even be sinners at church! I don’t mean we should sin at church (although inevitably we will), but rather  that we should quit pretending we aren’t sinners when we’re there.

I was a sinner at our men’s Bible study group this morning. I opened up about an angry mistake I had made this week in my relationship with my son, and I asked for prayer for the healing conversation that my son and I will be having soon. They understood, they continued to accept me, and they prayed for me.

A close friend sitting at the same table was a sinner at church, too. He mentioned part of his history — we all  knew it anyway — in which he nearly destroyed his family by committing adultery. (He and his wife and kids were reconciled after much loss and pain, much hard work, and much exercise of God’s grace in their lives.)

God loves sinners. That’s who the church is for! God doesn’t say of our sin, “Don’t worry, it’s not wrong.” He says,

 For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. For one will scarcely die for a righteous person — though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die — but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. (Rom. 5:6-8)

God’s heart is open to LGBT persons the same way his heart is open to all of us. His way is the way of grace, forgiveness, and reconciliation through Christ’s sacrificial death on the cross. There’s more love and goodness to be found there than in papering over anyone’s faults.

Whether they’ve thought about it or not, the Hatmakers need to be prepared to tell practicing bisexuals their need for God’s grace and forgiveness. While they’re at it, they really ought to recognize that the same thing applies L, G, and T persons, too. Just as it does to us all.

criticalconversationscover.jpg

For more of the same clear thinking on marriage and morality — not just for parents and not just for teens — read Critical Conversations: A Christian Parents’ Guide to Discussing Homosexuality With Teens (Kregel Publications, 2016).

 

 

Related: Don’t Be Confused: Gay People Really Should Have the Right To Choose Who They Love!

Image Credit(s): Roger Mommaerts.

Commenting Restored

The comment function here has been out of service, possibly causing frustration, for which I apologize. You can comment again now, and it will save and post as it should do. First-time commenters' comments will not appear, however, until approved in moderation.

36 thoughts on “Sorry, Jen Hatmaker: Your Biblical Grounds For Affirming LGBT Still Imply Something Wrong With LGBT

  1. Tom:

    first, a note. I left another comment over on the other post a few days ago, but it seems to have gotten lost in the ether. I think it had something to do with my browser, but oh well.

    Anyway:
    Doubt me? Think how far you’d get dropping one of the letters. Does anyone support LBT without G? LGT without B?

    Yes, there are people who don’t take all the letters as a ‘package deal’. For example: http://www.advocate.com/transgender/2015/11/06/lgbt-groups-respond-petition-asking-drop-t (for the record, I absolutely disassociate myself from this view).

    But what do they do with the B? It’s still sin — even on their LG-affirming interpretation of God’s word.

    Tom, you’re misunderstanding bisexuality. It doesn’t entail anything about behavior. It just means being attracted to both men and women. Just as you might be attracted to both brown-haired women and blonde-haired women, yet still ultimately decide to be monogamous with only the former and, once you are, refrain from pursuing the latter; a bisexual person can do the same with regard to gender.

    What you’re objecting to here is polyamory, which is an entirely different thing. Some bisexual people are also polyamorous, as are some homosexual and heterosexual people, but many are not.

  2. Skep,

    Tom, you’re misunderstanding bisexuality. It doesn’t entail anything about behavior. It just means being attracted to both men and women.

    I’m not misunderstanding that at all. You’re misunderstanding the Christian view. No one I know of says that there’s anything essentially wrong with being attracted to the same sex or to both sexes. We point to the practice. I wrote it in bold type: “If monogamous relationships, and only monogamous relationships, can be godly, then bisexual practice cannot be godly.”

    You might as well recognize, you’re sort of peeking in on someone else’s conversation. Some of it spills over into the wider culture, but this is primarily about Christians disagreeing with Christians, based on broadly shared biblical assumptions — to a greater or lesser degree, which is the crux of the debate.

    So if it doesn’t all make sense to you, that’s because you’re listening in on a conversation involving all kinds of assumptions you don’t share.

  3. If the letters aren’t all a package deal, well, I’m still wondering why they usually are, for one thing; and I think I’ve also made the case that the Hatmakers are treating them as though they are, which is the point I was going for here.

  4. Tom, imagine this hypothetical conversation:

    Me: Christianity is silly. It’s really weird how Jesus was three sentient lizards in a robe.

    Another atheist: Nah. I don’t agree with his teachings, but it’s not that weird that he was three sentient lizards in a robe.

    You: Wait, what? Jesus wasn’t three sentient lizards in a robe! You’ve got this all wrong!

    Me: Tom, you’re sort of peeking in on someone else’s conversation. Some of it spills over into the wider culture, but this is primarily about atheists disagreeing with atheists, based on broadly shared scientific assumptions.

    That’s basically what just happened here. What you’re calling “bisexual practice” is just polyamory that incidentally happens to be bisexual. There are plenty of bisexuals, who, in practice, are monogamous. Now, if you want to object to polyamory qua polyamory, or bisexuality qua bisexuality, go right ahead. But so far, you’re just not using terms correctly. And if the Christian view necessitates using terms incorrectly, well, that doesn’t look so good for the Christian view.

  5. Long power outage here tonight so I can’t answer in depth. But Skep, if you think your analogy holds, then go ahead and think so.

    Yes, I’m talking about bisexual polyamory. We all knew that. But thanks for sharing anyway.

  6. Nah, Skep. You’re conflating attraction and union, in exactly the same way that Tom is critiquing the Hatmakers for doing.

    Here’s the basic claim:

    Sexual union should be cultivated and practiced in a manner that is:
    * male-female
    * lifelong
    * exclusive

    Note that I’m not describing the goods of a sexual relationship, nor even all the constraints and characteristics. But historic Christian teaching has considered the above a necessary set of constraints.

    Part of cultivating and practicing sexual union that conforms to this claim is resisting attraction counter to it. I do not believe that there has existed a man in the last six millennia (or more) who has, in the course of their life, experienced sexual attraction towards exactly one other person. The same is likely true for women. To achieve a lifelong and exclusive sexual relationship requires that one feeds attraction towards one specific individual while starving attraction towards all others.

    Feelings are to be brought under the dominion of the will. They may guide the will, but must not be allowed to drive behaviour independently of the will.

    Modern society deliberate conflates “I act”, “I desire”, and “I am attracted”. With little justification, we bless the third as justifying the former two, except when we don’t.

    And thus LGBT. “I feel a desire for” blesses “I cultivate a desire for” and “I act”. But that has never been Christian teaching. “This is good and holy” blesses “I act” and “I cultivate a desire for” (even if my default desire is otherwise).

    As Tom states, it’s a nonsense to cultivate a bisexual monogamous lifelong relationship. Bisexual practice is by definition non-monogamous (I stop short of saying promiscuous – there is a distinction between cultivating sexual activity within a small fixed group and outside it). Even you admit this, above. And it is precisely this polyamory that Tom is pointing out as incoherent. The bisexuality is incidental except that it necessitates championing monogamous polyamorous relationships (yes, that is a contradiction in terms).

    As for the bisexual part of polygamy, if your baseline attraction is non-selective, then is perfectly consistent to cultivate the opposite sex attraction and restrain the same-sex attraction. Anyone acting monogamously must deny their polygamous desires; the person with bisexual desire just needs to filter out a broader pool.

    “Ah, but you’re denying attraction!”. Of course I am. Christian sanctification is all about subjecting the desires of the sinful nature to the discipline of Word and Spirit. And one of those disciplines it that you will cultivate sexual desire only in a a single monogamous, lifelong and opposite-sex relationship, and restrain it in all other situations. But note that I do not deny the existence of attraction; rather, I deny it the right to rule.

  7. Tom & Andrew:
    Sexual union should be cultivated and practiced in a manner that is:
    * male-female
    * lifelong
    * exclusive

    Bisexual people can do all three of these things. If they do not, it is not because they are bisexual, but for other reasons.

    Bisexual practice is by definition non-monogamous

    Except, it’s not. Bisexual practice doesn’t necessarily consist of acting sexually/romantically with more than one person.

    Anyone acting monogamously must deny their polygamous desires; the person with bisexual desire just needs to filter out a broader pool.

    What about the many bisexual people who do not have polyamorous desires?

  8. Give it up. Everyone but you knows what I mean by bisexual practice. You don’t. That doesn’t mean you need to keep trying to correct me.

    Skep, you are 100 right. And this blog post is (or at least should be) embarrassing in its ignorance (at least at to how it’s written now. Tom seems to be saying in the comments that he wasn’t talking about bisexuals per se but, “bisexual polyamory. ” That clearly doesn’t come across in the post itself. Indeed, in the post he seems to clearly conflate them (out of what appears to be ignorance). The blog post should be scrapped/re-written.)

  9. Skep keeps trying to tell me there’s a difference between being bisexual and bisexually polyamorous. We all knew that already. I explained that in comment 3. What ignorance are you talking about then?

    Tom & Andrew:
    Sexual union should be cultivated and practiced in a manner that is:

    * male-female
    * lifelong
    * exclusive

    Bisexual people can do all three of these things. If they do not, it is not because they are bisexual, but for other reasons.

    Duh. Das kennt jeder Esel. True, in other words, but completely missing the point, which should have been clear enough by now. Being bisexual is not the sin. Being bisexual does not require a person to do anything. We get that.

    It’s also irrelevant to what I’m saying here.

    Fact: The Hatmakers’ statements have not been about orientation but about actual relational practice.
    Fact: This post was written in the context of their discussions on sexual practice.
    Fact: Their endorsement of LGBT, in the context of sexual practice, implies an endorsement of bisexual practice.
    Fact: They apparently believe that all sex must be practiced within these circumstances only: a committed monogamous faithful relationship.
    Fact: It is impossible to practice bisexual sex in a committed monogamous faithful relationship.
    Conclusion: Their endorsement of LGBT contradicts their belief that sex should only be practiced within the bounds of a committed faithful monogamous relationship.

    This is not ignorant. It’s not wrong. It’s not even complicated. Now, please drop this false line of inquisition and leave room for discussion on what I actually wrote.

    That’s the second time I’ve said that. It isn’t just a request this time.

  10. Philmonomer, if I didn’t distinguish between practice and orientation clearly enough in the post, I did in comment 3. Skep kept pushing on it anyway. Rude.

  11. That’s the second time I’ve said that. It isn’t just a request this time.

    Are you saying that I’m no longer allowed to continue trying to explain why I disagree with you on this topic?

  12. Tom,

    You keep using the phrase “bisexual practice.” Can you clarify what that means?

    And the phrase “bisexual sex.” I am not clear as to what that means.

    I do not think these are normal/usual/common phrases.

    Thank you.

  13. Skep, you’ve already demonstrated how you don’t understand what I’m saying on this topic. You’re welcome to inquire. To disagree again with what you don’t understand would be unseemly and annoying.

    Philmonomer,

    I would have thought it was obvious. It means having sex with both a man and a woman

  14. I would have thought it was obvious. It means having sex with both a man and a woman

    At the same time?

  15. Could Hatmaker’s contradiction be even worse? I would think, in her view, that what makes same sex relationships holy is mutual desire. It seems to me that it follows from this that pursuing even more mutually desirable sexual relationships would be even more holy. Which means that aside from the rare person who is only attracted to one person ever, monogamy…which requires one to restrain themselves from pursuing their desires….would be unholy, even immoral.

  16. Philmonomer.

    Wow. What on earth would lead you to think that was what I meant? This is sick.

    No.

    Use your brain, okay?

    Read my post again, but this time think about what I was saying: I was saying there’s a contradiction between “bisexual practice,” and a faithful committed monogamous relationship. Now, what could make you think that what I meant specifically was “at the same time”?

    I didn’t spell it out in more detail in the first place (a) for reasons of decency and (b) because it never occurred to me it would be difficult to ascertain what I was talking about.

    I’m worried for you. I’m worried for Skep. This is so not-difficult if you have any conception of what “faithful monogamous committed” means. You could have figured it out without all this extra help.

  17. I wrote this as a serious challenge to Christians who think there is a possibility of biblical support for LGBT. I am getting a lot of flack from readers who don’t care about that, but still want to poke repeatedly at what I wrote, based on misunderstandings that are unlikely to be a problem within the intended Christian audience.

    My purpose in blogging isn’t to lay kindling for people can pour lighter fluid on and set a match to, but that’s what’s happening here. It pretty much destroys any possibility of having the kind of conversation I was intending to have, with the people I wanted to have it with.

    I am now claiming my right to post an article for some audience other than atheists/skeptics/activists who literally want to use power to demand their way past their opposition. The current topic under discussion with Skep and Philmonomer ends now, or it will all be deleted.

  18. Tom, here’s a bit of meta-commentary about what happened here:

    You are, it seems, baffled that Philmonomer and myself are apparently misunderstanding your point very badly. You’ve even directed us more than once to re-read what you’ve written.

    But you also said “I didn’t spell it out in more detail in the first place”, and say ” it never occurred to me it would be difficult to ascertain what I was talking about.”

    You also seem, both here and on the other post in which I was commenting, to be reluctant to clarify what you mean by certain things.

    Here’s the thing, Tom: when people write, sometimes their writing fails to get across the point that’s in their head. It’s certainly happened to me many times, and I think here it’s happened to you.

    You say “It pretty much destroys any possibility of having the kind of conversation I was intending to have, with the people I wanted to have it with.” But when I go back a look at the original post again, you make several statements much more general than “this is about Christian views” etc. For example: Does anyone support LBT without G? LGT without B?; furthermore, you directly quoted something I said previously. Given all that, I took this post to be at least partially directed at me, and further, at least partially directed at the LGBT community in general. And yes, while you do also speak heavily in Christian terms in this post, you also do so (at least that I’ve seen) in nearly every other post you’ve ever made. I take that to be a feature of your writing in general, not a feature of this article specifically.

    I hope you can at least see where I’m coming from here.

  19. The post was directed at the Hatmakers. Sorry if you think I was aiming it at you; I was just illustrating a point and moving on.

    I’ll grant I didn’t write the post with blazing clarity. I still find it odd that you kept fighting so long to convince me that I was wrong or confusing when I spelled it all out in comment 3 — all except the astonishing point of confusion I still had to clarify in #15 and #18.

    You say, “You also seem, both here and on the other post in which I was commenting, to be reluctant to clarify what you mean by certain things.” No, not reluctant to clarify. Surprised that I need to clarify. Confused that I need to clarify. Wondering why anyone would keep pushing me to clarify things as if I hadn’t already. Not sure how to clarify any further than I already have. Not sure that the lo-o-ong conversation about clarifying was helpful to the original audience and purpose for the post.

    If the post and my explanations still aren’t clear to you, then please re-read the last two paragraphs of #3 and let’s drop it.

  20. I’ll say one more thing, and then I’ll drop it.

    I think if you only get one thing from my recent posts, it’s this: you’re woefully unfamiliar with the terminology that the LGBT community (and other semi-related communities) uses to refer to itself. “Bisexual practice”, for example, is not something I’ve ever heard before in my life – and that includes bisexual Christians I’ve spoken to. And a similar issue regarding terminology came up in your post from awhile back on the topic of erotic fanfiction.

    In the future, I welcome you to email me for review regarding any LGBT terminology in future posts on topics like this, if you would like. I think it would help improve the clarity of your posts, and to be honest I’m happy to do so. Like you, I’d much prefer a “meatier” discussion over what happened here.

  21. So what term do they use for the actual practice of engaging in sexual relations with both men and women, or at least one of each? Is there a shorter term for that? Do they use language like “the actual practice of engaging in sexual relations with both men and women”?

    In other words, how should I have said it? (Without foul language.)

    Could it be that they don’t use the language I used because they don’t talk about these things?

  22. Well, while we do talk about “those things”, we don’t really have a term *specifically* for “the actual practice of engaging in sexual relations with both men and women, or at least one of each?” – at least not in the way you mean it. Our terminology is such that we have:

    – sets of terms for gender (cis, trans, nonbinary, genderqueer, etc.)
    – sets of terms for sexual orientation (gay, straight, bi, etc.)
    – sets of terms for general sexual behavior (monogamy, polyamory, swinging, BDSM, open relationships, etc. )
    – sets of terms for specific sexual acts (I’ll refrain from giving examples here)

    And the thing is, we don’t combine these terms into one identity; each category exists completely independent of the others. So, for example: I’m cis, and I’m bi, and I’m polyamorous – but I’m not “cis bi polyamorous”, taken as a single thing. This is because each set is incidental to the other sets.

    if you want to write about “the actual practice of engaging in sexual relations with both men and women, or at least one of each”, you have to do two things: first, use several different terms, and second, be more specific. This is why Philmonomer’s question in comment 16 is actually important – bisexual people who have sex with men and women at the same time are not the same group as bisexual people who have sex with men and women at different times, and they’re not the same group as bisexual people who are in relationships with men and women at the same time but only have sex with one at a time, and they’re not the same group as bisexual people who only have sex with men or only women, and they’re not the same group as bisexual people who don’t have sex at all. These different groups are all bisexual, and their sexual practices are all bisexual, *because* they are all bisexual.

    In other words, while we have terms for different sexual practices, one of those terms is not “bisexual” – that’s a term solely referring to something else, orientation. To us, so-called “bisexual practice” is, collectively, any and all sexual practices that bisexuals engage in. Or to put it another way, it’s “the sexual practice of bisexuals”. But, as I’ve explained, the practice of bisexuals is quite varied.

    Finally: it might seem like the proper term for you to use is “bisexual polyamory” or “bisexual open relationships”, but that’s not exactly accurate, because a bisexual person could be polyamorous, and still only have sex with only men or only women – just more than one.

  23. To add: I realize that all this terminology might seem quite esoteric and confusing to some. But objectively, it’s not any more complicated than other things, such as terminology in heavy metal (blackened thrash, arpeggio, circle pit, licks, tabs, breakdown, -core, djent, tremolo picking, fingertapping, etc.) or even in Christian theology & apologetics (canon, molinism, arminianism, calvinism, apocrypha, Q source, eschatology, synoptic, theodicy, etc.)

    a subculture’s language almost always sounds “weird” to someone outside of it.

  24. Tom, it’s not easy for the same reason it’s not easy to write something about “American molinists”. If you try, molinists will wonder what being American has to do with it, and Americans will wonder what being a molinist has to do with it.

    Does that clear things up a little?

  25. Sure. But I was writing about what I was writing about for a reason. If I had a reason to write about American molinists, they might wonder those things but I’d write about it anyway.

  26. If I could hazard a guess at what Jen Hatmaker might say to this blog post, she would “approve” (for lack of a better word) of bisexuals who engage in lifelong monogamous relationships.

    When I think of who she means by that, I think of someone who has a bisexual orientation (that is, is physically attracted to both men and women), but who is married (either to a man or to a woman) and is engaged in a lifelong monogamous relationship.

    [BTW I know several women like this–that is, women married to men who are in lifelong monogamous relationships, but who identify as bisexual. Personally, I find it a little silly, but, hey, I’d never say that to their face. Nor should I, as their experience is their experience. And just because I can’t relate, doesn’t mean I should invalidate it. (That is, they don’t experience themselves as heterosexual, but as bisexual.)]

    I think the point of this blog post is to say that if one is a “practicing bisexual” (in the same way that someone might say, “hey, that man over there is a ‘practicing homosexual,'” you would then immediately think that means that man over there is engaging in homosexual acts on a regular basis (either with one man or more than one)) then such a person who is a”practicing bisexual” must mean that person is engaging in sexual acts with both men and women on a regular basis. And if they are engaging in sex acts with both men and women, then that bisexual person cannot possibly be engaged in a “lifelong monogamous relationship.”

    My problem with this is that, sure there may be “practicing bisexuals” out there doing this–but that doesn’t mean Jen Hatmaker has to approve. Indeed, she would explicitly disapprove. The bisexual she would approve is the person who has the orientation of bisexual (like the women I know), who nevertheless chooses to be in a lifelong monogamous relationship.

  27. If I could hazard a guess at what Jen Hatmaker might say to this blog post, she would “approve” (for lack of a better word) of bisexuals who engage in lifelong monogamous relationships.

    So would I — if they’re opposite-sex relationships.

    When I think of who she means by that, I think of someone who has a bisexual orientation (that is, is physically attracted to both men and women), but who is married (either to a man or to a woman) and is engaged in a lifelong monogamous relationship.

    That’s a charitable interpretation, and it might be true. No one that I have ever read has articulated it that clearly, though. For that reason, and since she has clearly endorsed the practice of L and G in LGBT, I think it’s worth raising the question whether she also endorses the practice of B in LGBT. It’s not certain that she does, but it’s not at all clear that she doesn’t — and she needs to make it clear. Same with Matthew Vines.

    I did not use the term “practicing bisexual” or “practicing homosexual” in the post’s argument, only in a final application paragraph. Just to make sure that’s clear.

  28. That’s a charitable interpretation, and it might be true.

    It strikes me as the only reasonable interpretation, and almost certainly true.

  29. In reading back through the comments here, another thought struck me:

    With regard to this:

    I think it’s worth raising the question whether [Jen Hatmaker] also endorses the practice of B in LGBT.

    I think Jen Hatmaker (and Mathew Vines) would say “I don’t know what you are talking about.”

  30. Well, I was envisioning a situation where someone literally tries to raise the question as you have framed it here (as you seem to be implying should be done) with either Jen Hatmaker or Mathew Vines. That is, I was envisioning a situation where someone literally asks:

    Questioner: “Jen/Mathew, you have endorsed the practices of gays, and endorsed the practices of lesbians. Do you endorse the practices of bisexuals?”

    Likely response: “I don’t understand the question. I endorse lifelong monogamous relationships for gays, lesbians, and bisexuals.”

    If you are simply saying that Jen Hatmaker or Mathew Vines needs to have read this blog post in order to understand your idiosyncratic definitions (in order to understand the question), then sure. No problem.

  31. [Repeated comment/edited for clarity]:

    I was envisioning a situation where someone tries to raise the question as you have framed it (and as you seem to be implying should be raised) with either Jen Hatmaker or Mathew Vines. That is, I was envisioning a situation where someone literally asks:

    Questioner: “Jen/Mathew, you have endorsed the practice of gays, and endorsed the practice of lesbians. Do you endorse bisexual practice?”

    The likely response would be:

    Jen/Mathew: “I don’t understand the question. I endorse lifelong monogamous relationships for gays, lesbians, and bisexuals.”

    If you are saying that, in order to respond to the question as you’ve framed it, Jen Hatmaker or Mathew Vines needs to have read this blog post/comments to understand your idiosyncratic definitions, then sure, no problem.

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