As I work to continue my series on LGBTQ+ I realize that there is another issue that needs to be brought to bear before we dive into what should be the secular view of LGBTQ+ and what is the Biblical view.
Tolerance has been wrongly defined in our culture
Tolerance in our culture has been wrongly redefined. While tolerance is defined as “the ability or willingness to tolerate something, in particular the existence of opinions or behavior that one does not necessarily agree with.”, this is not how our culture has begun to view tolerance on many issues especially LGBTQ+.
Tolerance by the above definition would mean that someone who does not agree with the LGBTQ+ lifestyle is welcome to hold that belief, but just be respect and not interfere with their freedoms to live that way. The view of tolerance on this issue today is that you must agree that the LBTQ+ lifestyle is acceptable and change your moral views no matter what your grounding is for those convictions.
Tolerance should be “agreeing to disagree”. Tolerance that is being demanded is “Agree to agree with me”.
LGBTQ+ on the offense
Now LGBQ+ has shifted from this tolerance means you must you agree with us, to a whole new step by going on the offense against those who disagree. Take the LGBTQ+ community in England which protested against the opening of Chick-fil-A in England because of the companies stance against the LGBTQ+ lifestyle. In essence the community is saying “either agree with us or you cannot have a business here.” another example comes from Beto O’Rourke who announced that as a Presidential hopeful he doesn’t believe churches should get a tax exempt status if they don’t agree with the LGBTQ+ lifestyle.
That’s not exactly tolerance. In fact it’s just the opposite. It’s forcing someone to believe what you do, which is the exact opposite of tolerance.
Keep in mind this isn’t LGBTQ+ communities fighting against organizations that are being intolerant toward them by refusing them a chicken sandwich or saying you can’t attend their churches. These are situations where one side is being tolerant despite disagreement with the other side and the other side telling them they must agree with them or face the consequences. This isn’t tolerance. It is intolerance. It is coercion. It’s forcing your beliefs on someone else. Twisting their arm and leveraging whatever you can to make someone believe as you do.
One Last Important thought
Granted I will be the first to admit that the church, especially some churches, have not always been tolerant of the LGBTQ+ community. In fact there has been numerous and unfortunately will probably still be many more times when the church is downright unloving to the LGBTQ+ community. Doing so isn’t Biblical. Jesus loved everyone no matter what lifestyle they were in, and we should do the same.
My point is this: often times the LGBTQ+ community sends off warning flares to the church that if they are going to speak into LGBTQ+ issues they better be tolerant of those who believe and live differently then them. My question in reply to this is: if the Church disagrees with them on these issues, will they give the church the same respect and tolerance as they demand from the church? Or will they be told them must change their religion if it doesn’t agree with what they believe? It’s been my experience on some occasions and in the way the movement seems to be moving, that they will force the church to believe what they do.
You cannot tell the church to be tolerant and then in the same breath tell them they must agree with your views. You cannot say “I am tolerant of you” while forcing the person to believe what you believe about the issue you say you are being tolerant of them about.