A Letter to Louise: the best argument for affirming GLBT people   Leave a comment

Bruce W. Lowe, a graduate of Southwestern Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas (1946), and former pastor, has written a beautiful letter to a woman who had been his friend for 50 years.

Recently, during one of the many visits we have had since then she said to me “My brother hates God because God made him gay, and he knows he is going to hell, and I do, too, for that is what the Bible says.”  At that time I had only some suppositions – quite negative – about homosexuality and had never thought it needed study.  But her words made me want to know as much as I could learn.  (from his introduction)

He took it on himself to read and study the issue carefully, and he wrote a response to her a few years later.  I have only reprinted here the beginning of it, but the title links to the whole letter.  It’s worth your time to read it if you believe that gays are not acceptable to God, or even that they must remain celibate if they are Christian.


To: Louise, dear friend, beloved of God

From: Bruce, by the immeasurable grace of God, a brother in Christ

Your heavy-hearted words to Anna Marie and me the last time we saw you will always burn in our hearts: “My brother hates God because God made him gay, and he knows he is going to hell, and I do, too, for that is what the Bible says.” I struggled for a response, realizing suddenly that what I knew about gays and what the Bible says about them was very superficial. Anna Marie’s immediate response to you was, “No one will go to hell who puts his faith in Jesus Christ.” How gloriously true! Whatever else the Bible says or doesn`t say, homosexuals are not necessarily going to hell.

I decided to give serious study to homosexuality and what the Bible says about it. Thank God! There was so much to learn about gays and lesbians–and the Bible–that I am so glad to have come to know. It distresses me, though, to realize that most others of our church people do not know these facts about homosexuality and what the Bible really says, and that their thinking, like my previous concept, is based on suppositions, not facts, and on feelings, which, of course, have no place in a thoughtful consideration of facts.

I am now convinced that the presumption that you and your brother have about his condemnation is unjustified. I have written out what I believe is clearly a correct interpretation of pertinent Biblical passages; it is Appendix B to this letter. A correct interpretation is dependent on following dependable principles of interpretation, so I discuss these principles in Appendix A. In the body of the letter I have put the convictions I have come to into ten statements that I believe you and I and your brother and our church families must come to understand about homosexuality and about gays and lesbians. But I know some will never accept them, so I have something I want to say to those people; I have made it Appendix C.

Forgive the length of this treatise, but I didn’t think I could address this matter adequately with fewer words. Also forgive the somewhat academic structure; I felt the nature of my study rather required it. I pray that this will give you some of the welcome insights my study has given me.

The rest of the letter you can read yourself—and he does a thorough job, so it is a bit long.  But it is one of the clearest descriptions of the Biblical texts, and one of the clearest arguments for accepting gays and lesbians as they are.  He includes all the Bible verses as well.  It’s a good read, and if you are struggling with your faith in regards to your own same-sex feelings, or struggling too with a family member or loved one who is gay or lesbian, this is for you.

Thanks, Bruce!

Posted December 6, 2010 by jstueart in churches, coming out

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