An Academic Look at Homosexuality and the Bible

Dr. Amy-Jill Levine

Just last week, I attended a lecture by Amy-Jill Levine, who is a Jewish New Testament professor at Vanderbilt Divinity School. (Oh, and she’s straight, too.) It was my first time to hear her speak live, although I’ve enjoyed hearing her thoughts in many documentaries, including “Fish Out Of Water”. She is respected around the world for her contributions to religious studies, and I can now fully understand why; she was an absolute pleasure! From the moment she walked onto the platform, she was engaging us with Scripture, culture, and humor. I scrambled to keep up my notes as she continued to spout off point after interesting point. There’s no way I can capture everything, but I’d like to share a few key points that I found extremely provocative and profound. (Points are paraphrased. My thoughts are added in italics.)

We have to ask “what does it mean”?… not simply, “what does it say”? Translation issues are too expansive to even discuss at length here. However, it is helpful to know that the word “homosexual” was mentioned for the first time in English in 1892. Its origin only goes back to 1869, from Germany. “Malakoi” is found in I Corinthians 6:9. It means “soft” or “vulnerable”. In this text, it is commonly mis-translated into “men who have sex with men”. However, it shows up in other biblical texts, and is nowhere a reference to homosexuality. In Matthew 11:8 and Luke 7:25, it refers to clothing. In Matthew 4:23 and 9:35, it refers to illness.

Culturally, there will always be fierce arguments over biblical texts. In Jesus’ time, rabbis were already disagreeing over the topic of divorce. “Does a woman have to commit adultery in order for me to divorce her, or can I choose to leave her because she burned my dinner?” The Bible is more clear on divorce than it is on homosexuality. Yet, we don’t treat divorcees like 2nd class citizens. Some politicians claim that Scripture is the reason for their stance against homosexuality. Certain political parties will not support a gay candidate, but they have elected countless leaders who are divorced (sometimes multiple times). Those who say, “we must follow all of God’s laws as stated in Scripture” have set themselves up for failure, and not solely on the issue of divorce. After all, in the Holiness Code alone, we are forbidden to eat shrimp or pork, co-mingle our crops, or even wear clothing made from two different types of fabric. (Although I must admit, there are times when polyester can be a fashion faux pas.)

Anti-homosexual ideology often stems from misogyny or the subordination of women. When a coach wants to humiliate his all-male sports team, he calls them a bunch of girls. Why does this work? This notion goes all the way back to biblical times. In battle, hostages were commonly raped by their captors; it was the most intense form of humiliation. To a man, the most degrading thing that can happen is for him to be treated like a woman, or placed in the female role.

“It is not good for man to be alone”. This is God’s narrative from Genesis 2:8. If it is indeed “not good for man to be alone”, then why do we condemn homosexuals to a life of singleness? (Probably because people are too busy making the “God made Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve” debate.)

Natural vs. Unnatural. In Romans 1, “natural” means customary to the culture, and “unnatural” means uncustomary (or deviated from cultural norm). Paul uses this same “contrary to nature” terminology later on in Romans, when he discusses how the Gentiles obtain their salvation. “But if some of the branches were broken off, while you, a wild olive shoot, were grafted in among them to share the richness [of the root and sap] of the olive tree, do not boast over the branches and pride yourself at their expense. If you do boast and feel superior, remember it is not you that support the root, but the root [that supports] you. You will say then, ‘Branches were broken (pruned) off so that I might be grafted in!'” (Romans 11:17-19 AMP)

Statistics of ex-gay ministries. There is currently a 95-98% failure rate for organizations that claim to cure or reverse sexual orientation. (Levine didn’t spend too much time on this one. I suppose there’s not a lot left to say. However, she did humorously add that she wouldn’t feel comfortable with her daughter dating a graduate of an ex-gay program.)

These are just a few of her points that I found incredibly thought-provoking. Some I’d heard before, but never this in-depth. This recap doesn’t even come close to portraying how comprehensive Levine’s lecture was; but hopefully there are some things that you can glean from this cliff-notes lecture review.


14 responses to “An Academic Look at Homosexuality and the Bible

  1. These seem to be the same arguments that are often offered in favor of a Christian homosexual lifestyle but don’t really hold any weight.

    1) “The term ‘Homosexual’ is never used in the Bible and didn’t even come about until the late 1800’s.” Notice the distinction that she doesn’t make. Being homosexual is a state or an orientation; a person who has a homosexual orientation might not even express that orientation in actions. By contrast, a person could engage in homosexual acts even if he has a heterosexual orientation. What the Bible condemns is homosexual actions or behavior, not having a homosexual orientation. The idea of a person’s being a homosexual by orientation is a feature of modern psychology and may have been unknown to people in the ancient world. So of course “homosexual” wasn’t used in the Bible, it becomes quit obvious that the Bible wouldn’t condemn that, for the idea of orientation was most likely completely foreign. What they were familiar with was homosexual acts, and this is what the Bible forbids.

    2) “The word ‘Natural’ used in Romans 1 means customary to the culture, and “unnatural” means uncustomary.” Liberal scholars have done acrobatics to try to explain away the clear sense of these verses. Do Christians even understand what she is saying here? This is just another way of saying that the homosexual practices in the New Testament were culturally relative to that time. But as I’ve said before, since ALL of scriptures prohibitions are written within the cultural backdrop of that time, it would follow that ALL of scriptures prohibitions are relative and don’t apply to us. On this notion, one is free not to follow any of the prohibitions in the Bible.

    3) “The same old, ‘God made Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve’ argument.” What is ironic about her admission of this argument is that she just completely dismisses it. She just dismisses it as if it were some cliche phrase that need not be addressed. But the problem remains. The creation story in Genesis tells of how God made woman as a suitable mate for man; His perfect God-given compliment. Then it says “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be unit to his wife, and they will become one flesh (Gen. 2:24) This is God’s pattern for marriage, and in the New Testament Paul quotes this very passage and then says, “This is a profound mystery — but I am talking about Christ and the church.” (Eph. 5:32) Paul says that the union between a man and his wife is a living symbol of the unity of Christ with His people, the church. When we think about this, we can see what a terrible sacrilege, what a mockery of God’s plan, a homosexual union is. It flies in the face of God’s intention for humanity from the moment of creation.

    4) “This is God’s narrative from Genesis 2:8. If it is indeed ‘not good for man to be alone’, then why do we condemn homosexuals to a life of singleness?” This was the worst argument in the whole thing… If we are to take this interpretation seriously, it would entail that ANYONE who is not in some kind of a relationship is doing something contrary to God’s plan! This is too sophomoric to reply to.

    • I really hate the idea that my first set of words on this site are acting as a rebuttal but for some reason I can’t let this lie. This class of “others” you are speaking against, are my people and my community.

      The first thing I want to say is thank you for coming to my partner’s site and standing your grounds on the “front line.” I know it isn’t easy to go to a place where everyone believes the opposite of you and say what you believe to be God’s word. I appreciate your effort and your thoughts on this difficult subject.

      Also, I don’t think it’s fair to dismiss Amy-Jill Levine’s lecture as “the same arguments…[that] don’t really hold any weight.” I attended that lecture as well, and I have never heard these ideas presented in such a way. I have been studying this subject for years and I think her thoughts are fresh, cleansing, and shouldn’t be dismissed so easily.

      1) From what you said on point one, it seems that you are okay? with people having a homosexual orientation. The “acts” are what the Bible forbids. But what constitutes a homosexual act? Hugging? Kissing? Sex? If sex is what you’re referring to then just know there are many people who have this opinion, too. (Some of them even gay.) This is their interpretation of God’s word, and that works for them. (Personally I don’t understand why God would be so petty about this. Yes you can hug and kiss but NO SEX EVER. Also, anyone who has been in a relationship knows that your mutual love transcends sex. Sex isn’t what holds a relationship together so…what can be done about that?)

      2) I will have to say, the end of Romans 1 has been the toughest scripture in my life to read. For the longest time it prevented me from fully appreciating Romans in it’s entirety. Sometimes I wonder if Paul knew that his letters to early churches would become part of the Bible then maybe he would have taken more care when writing them. Paul says some other things that we have grown to gloss over as well. He wants women to be silent in church and for us to not wear fancy jewelry either. You wrote earlier that all of scripture prohibitions were written in the cultural backdrop of their time, and could be interpreted as such. I totally agree with that. Leviticus says not to eat shellfish, is that a modern platform? No. God, through Moses, said honor your mother and father, do we follow that? Yes, because it makes sense.

      I do believe God wants us to use our minds and past information to do our best. How could He give us a brain and not want us to use it. I am not a Biblical literalist. (Biblical literalism is a much more recent movement than you would expect.) I think we need to search with all our heart, mind, and spirit. Ancient Hebrews and Greeks were totally different than we are today.

      3) Maybe Eve was Adam’s perfect compliment. But if I were stuck with an Adam, I would rather die. I, personally, can’t see an opposite sex mate as a God-given gift; though to some, it is. When God gives a gift, it is soul changing and life altering.

      When Jesus said, “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother…,” He was answering a question about divorce. He was talking about how scared a union is and how divorce is not good at all. Gay people weren’t even being talked about there, so I don’t see a reason to fashion this as an argument against gay people. It wasn’t even being discussed here.

      Personally, I love the idea of the church being the bride of Christ. I think that is a beautiful metaphor and it illustrates Jesus’ perfect encompassing love for his people. But there are men in the body of Christ; and everyone seems to be ok with men being the bride of Christ. I think making those words out as a refute against gay people is kind of like putting God’s boundless love in a black and white box. If my love for Mandy is such an unholy mockery of God then why hasn’t He seen fit to change me? I have never worshiped another God in my life and I have been just as much of a Christian as my straight friends.

      God has probably had many, many intentions for the human race. But as you can see He, also, has the incredible ability to meet us where we are. I am prepared to let God do the judging and rule enforcing. But I choose love and I choose acceptance.

      4) I think the point of Amy-Jill Levine quoting it is not good for man to be alone is: most gay people want to love someone and share their life with another person. Some choose to live in singleness and that is fine. But the moment something of God is forced upon someone, you remove God’s ability to act organically and move through the person’s cells as a divine entity. God doesn’t force anyone to do anything, so I think we humans should follow suit.

      I encourage you to explore this site (and others!) The gay issue is obviously something close to your heart, and we definitely need more people talking about this issue. Something that helps me through the day is to think about Jesus. When he entered the picture everyone was steeped in God’s law. Following black and white rules that alienated people from God’s love. Jesus radically changed that. Jesus broke the laws of His time in order to communicate God’s tenacious love for us. And that is what living is about, that is what I want my life to represent. I pray God’s peace is always with you and I thank you for taking the time to speak with us.

      • I love the above conversation. It is a much needed one and to be done with love. I am reminded of Psalms 119 as I look at the hearts of Mandy and Jessica and all who seek to walk according to the law of the Lord as they wrestle with scripture in regards to their sexuality.

        (verses 9-24)
        “How can a young man keep his way pure?
        By living according to your word.
        I seek you with all my heart;
        Do not let me stray from your commands.
        I have hidden your word in my heart
        That I might not sin against you.
        Praise be to you, O Lord;
        teach me your decrees.
        With my lip as I recount
        all the laws that come from your mouth.
        I rejoice in following your statues
        as one rejoices in great riches.
        I mediate on your precepts
        And consider your ways.
        I delight in your decrees;
        I will not neglect your word.
        Do good to your servant, and I will live;
        I will obey your word.
        Open my eyes that I may see
        wonderful things in your law.
        I am a stranger on earth;
        Do not hide your commands from me.
        My soul is consumed with longing
        for your laws at all times.
        You rebuke the arrogant, who are cursed
        and who stray from your commands.
        Remove from me scorn and contempt,
        for I keep your statues.
        Though rulers sit together and slander me,
        your servant will medicate on your decrees.
        Your statues are my delight;
        They are my counselors. “

        Many people with same-sex attraction aren’t just diving into a “life of sin.” Please consider our hearts. It looks like the above Psalm. We are seeking the Lord, discerning scripture, and praying for wisdom. And it is exciting to share “wonderful things” that we are discovering and my hope is that people who truly want to understand will take time to not just hear but to be open to the knowledge and understanding from much discernment and prayer that comes from sincere hearts.

  2. Thanks for the conversation, everyone! There are certainly lots of interesting things being said here. To Amy-Jill Levine’s defense, I’d like to reiterate that this post doesn’t even begin to touch on everything from her lecture. I would encourage anyone with any questions to do a web search for her videos. Her lectures are just bursting with information. I guarantee… even if you think you’ve heard it all: she’ll tell you something you haven’t.

  3. Some people say that against homosexuality has presented in general two places, whom are assumed condemning homosexuality as a sin. 1 Cor 6:9 and 1 Tim 1:10 is Greek word arsenokoites, and according to some it doesn’t mean homosexuality. Some people say that meaning of arsenokoites is also unclear in the midst of Bible scholars. There are also people who claim that apostle Paul made up this word, because we can’t find this word from Greek texts before Paul.

    All preceding claims are wrong and erroneous. Concept of arsenokoites is in Greek Septuagint text, which has been made about two hundred years before birth of Jesus Christ. The Jews translated Septuagint in Alexandria of Egypt, because the Jews were scattered and part of them merged to heathen languages and couldn’t speak and understand Hebrew. For this reason, the Jewish scribes translated the Scriptures from Hebrew to Greek (Septuagint).

    Septuagint and the Greek word arsenokoites:

    Lev 18:22 (Septuaginta)

    kai meta arsenos ou koimeeteesee koiten gynaikos bdelugma gar estin

    Lev 20:13 (Septuaginta)

    kai os an koimeetee meta arsenos koiten gynaikos bdelugma epoieesan amphoteroi thanatousthoosan enokhoi eisin

    Arsenos means male and koiten means bed. Lev 18:22 and 20:13 teach that a man cannot lie (sexual act) with another man as he lies with a woman. The origin of the word arsenokoites means homosexual activity and homosexual. Lev 18:22 and 20:13 prove very clearly that arsenos koiten means homosexuality sex, because the Jews scribes translated words’ arsenos koiten to describe men who have sex with another men (homosexuality), which is a sin and against the will of God. Apostle Paul didn’t make up the word arsenokoites, but it was already as the concept in the Old Testament, where it meant homosexuality.

    It is very clear that the words’ arsenos koiten meant homosexuality (man who had sex with another man) to Jews of the Old Covenant era. In the same way arsenokoites meant homosexuality (man who had sex with another man) to Jesus’ disciples in the New Covenant era.

    Jewish philosopher Philo lived in the same time as Jesus Christ and Philo has said that arsenokoites meant shrine prostitute (male temple prostitute), and not homosexual. Some people have made from this a conclusion that the word arsenokoites meant a male temple prostitute. Philo’s interpretation was totally wrong, because the Bible proves this undisputedly and shows that Philo erred.

    De 23:17 There shall be no whore (gedeshah) of the daughters of Israel, nor a sodomite (gadesh) of the sons of Israel.

    Lev 18:22 Thou shalt not lie (shakab) with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination.

    Lev 20:13 If a man also lie (shakab) with mankind, as he lieth (mishkab) with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them.

    Female temple prostitute is in Hebrew gedeshah and a male temple prostitute is gadesh. Lev 18:22 and Lev 20:13 are Hebrew words shakab (lie, lie down and lie sexually) and mishkab (bed, lying down, lying down sexually).

    Lev 18:22 and Lev 20:13 doesn’t use temple prostitute word, but words in which is denied that a man can’t lie sexually with another man. Always when the Bible speaks for temple prostitutes, so the Bible uses words gedeshah and gadesh. If Lev 18:22 and Lev 20:13 told for temple prostitutes, so verses would mention them, but there isn’t, because in those verses, the Bible forbids homosexuality. It is very clear and undisputable in the light of the testimony of the Bible, that arsenokoites means homosexuality.

    The text of Septuagint translators disproves totally Philo’s false interpretation:

    De 23:17 ouk stai porne apo thugateron israel kai ouk estai porneuon apo uion israel ouk estai telesphoros apo thugateron israel kai ouk estai teliskomenos apo uion israel (Septuagint De 23:17)

    In the text of Septuagint appear words porne and porneuon, which describe temple prostitutes. Jewish Bible translators’ scholars didn’t use the word arsenokoites to describe temple prostitute. The testimony of the Bible is unambiguous that arsenokoites doesn’t mean temple prostitute, but homosexual.

    Philo was pleased Greek, Stoic and Jewish philosophy, and for this reason he believed that literal interpretation of the Jewish Bible is stifled and too complex to be understood in literal human terms. Philo was a liberal theologian of his era, who distorted the teachings of the Bible by his own human wisdom. Philo’s testimony from the word arsenokoites is invalid and clearly against the teaching of the Bible.

    Arsenokoites meant exactly what Jewish Septuagint translators meant, in other words, it means homosexuality and practicing of homosexuality, which is a sin according to the word of God (Bible).

    1 Cor 6:
    9 Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate (malakos), nor abusers of themselves with mankind (arsenokoites),
    10 Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.
    11 And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.

    The word effeminate is in Greek malakos, which means soft, effeminate, of a boy kept for homosexual relations with a man, of a male who submits his body to unnatural lewdness, of a male prostitute. According to the word of God (Bible) homosexual act between a boy and a man is a sin, and male prostitution is also a sin.

    Abusers with mankind is in Greek arsenokoiteen – arsenokoites, which means homosexual. This comes out also very clear from Septuagint as we have seen it before. Arsenokoites derives from words arrhen and koite. Arrhen means a male, and koite means a bed. The Bible brings up also in the New Covenant that homosexuality is wrong and a sin. The Bible brings up also very clearly that homosexual is a sin that is obstruction of salvation. Apostle Paul taught that homosexual is a sin as we can see clearly from 1 Cor 6:9-11.

    The word of God (Bible) teaches very clearly that those people who live in sinful homosexuality (and unrighteous, adulterers, idolatries and so on) cannot inherit the Kingdom of God, unless if they don’t repent their sins and forsake their sins.

    1 Cor 6:9-11 show for us also that in Corinth, some disciples had been homosexuals, but weren’t anymore, because they were sanctified and justified in the name of the Lord Jesus by the power of the Holy Spirit.

    The Bible also proves in 1 Cor 6:9-12 that homosexually oriented males can change and forsake homosexual identity for heterosexual with the help of Lord Jesus. There are also testimonies of many ex-gays who have received salvation in the Lord Jesus, and forsaken homosexuality and turned to heterosexual persons.


    • Thank you for sharing in this conversation. I love that people who are studying the scripture are sharing insight who are for and against the inclusion of homosexual marriages.

      I grew up being taught it is wrong and not to even talk about it. Now, after in depth study and research I land on the side of supporting same-sex marriage.

      One, I believe “what God joins together” (Mat 19:6) is much broader than what we as humans allow ourselves to think.

      Two, in all the above passages the context is not same-sex marriages. And the cultural interpretation has got to be taken into consideration. The Bible is a living document and evolves with time, right? It cannot remain stuck in the day it was written, right? Otherwise, most people would be in trouble for not greeting each other with a holy kiss, right?

      Three, people with same-sex attraction have been “washed, and sanctified, and justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.” We are not worshiping idols, we are not indulging in promiscuity, we are not slandering, we are not seeking to go against the will of God. We are, with all our heart seeking the Lord, praising the Lord, and giving honor to the Lord. There is a big difference than what is being addressed in scripture.

      Four, when Jesus was quizzed about marriage in Mathew 19 he turned the focus on to a minority, the eunuchs, and referred to some of them being born that way. Indicating that we are not all born the same way. And that there are people who have more difficult situations than arguing over if one can get a divorce or not. And Jesus’s final comment was that whoever can accept the teaching of marriage should accept it. And I’m sure there are many same-sex couples who can accept the teaching of marriage for life, unlike the stereotypical thinking of homosexuals being promiscuous and self serving. And I think whoever chooses to remain single for the Lord whether they are hetero or homosexual can accept the teaching as well and remain celibate.

      Those are my initial thoughts on the above entry and in regards to this conversation, however I will go back and spend time considering what this person has presented. I’m open to looking at all angles. I hope this conversation continues!

      • One more point I wanted to present in regards to those who have been successful in ex-gay ministries, keep in mind there is a wide range on the continuum. I think people who are bisexual are more likely to be able to succeed in turning to a heterosexual partner. It is not fair for those who are 100% homosexual to have this same expectation. And I think this is one of the most frustrating things for us to get across to other people who don’t understand.

        If you are 100% heterosexual, try to make yourself be attracted to the same sex. It is impossible. Try to explain why and you will see how frustrating it is if people do not believe you. I’ve tried to be attracted to the opposite sex my whole life of 34 years and I have been very faithful to the Lord during all this time. I don’t know what else to do. I’m not changing. This is who I am. I have finally accepted that I am homosexual and I have never felt more close to the Lord since I have accepted that rather than when I fight against it.

  4. Yes, I completely agree with Josha in regards to the ex-gay ministries. The very small number who say their sexuality is “fixed” are people who are either bisexual or who are questioning their sexuality. Aside from that, when a person is ridiculed or shamed about something, they can change their behavior. But the orientation is still there.

    Which brings me to my comment to telson7. Thank you so much for sharing all of this enlightening information. As always, it’s important to explore all facets. However, I would like to know what you think about celibate homosexuals. Everything you mentioned in the above text speaks of homosexual intercourse. But what are your views on those who cannot change their attraction? LGBT’s can abstain from any sexual activity, but they’re still gay. What would you say to those who have tried every way possible to change their sexual orientation without success?

  5. My heart is heavy tonight as I look at this conversation again. And as I try to discern what scripture says or doesn’t say. As I found myself wrestling tonight, Ecclesiastes came to mind. At the end of the book where it says, “Of making many books there is no end, and much study wearies the body.” That is how I’m feeling at this very moment. Tired. I don’t want to stop this conversation. It is good. But right now I am tired. And I wish to ask people, not to forget scripture but to just put it aside for a second, and just listen to people’s stories. Listen to our hearts that are seeking the Lord in all this. Listen to people who have never pursued relationship with the Lord because they have been shunned from the beginning due to their sexual orientation. Just listen to what people have to say about their experience. My guess is that if we all listen to each other’s stories then we might see scripture in a new light. That has been my experience with not just this issue but others that we find ourselves wrestling with scripture about. I think personal stories help us find truth in scripture.

    I will never forget the day I stopped what I was doing and sat down in my apartment and prayed, “God, please help me understand people who are homosexual? I don’t understand. People seem to have a real same-sex attraction that is not a choice. And when I read scripture it doesn’t make sense. Please help me to understand my neighbors who are gay.” I had been noticing a draw I had toward people who were gay and in the midst of my continual denial of my true desires, I thought I was being Spirit-led to minister to people who are gay. I can laugh about that now as I can totally see the hand of God in my life as I was compelled to pray that prayer. That prayer was a pivotal moment in my journey, so my wish is that everybody say a similar prayer and seek to listen to others who have insights because they are walking in this journey themselves.

    And tonight, as I feel weary from much study, I can rest, not with any conclusion on the matter, but in my faith in God’s wisdom, in God’s love, and in God’s faithfulness and mercy.

    • I think you speak with a lot of wisdom, Josha. Many of us (on both sides of this issue) sometimes reach a point when we think we’ve got it figured out. However, true learning is active. It is constantly changing and growing. It is living. Therefore, we should always be open to the idea that our beliefs and philosophies may change over time. My personal belief is that the key is pureness of heart, when you can come before God, completely transparent, and say, “I don’t know anything, God. I need You to help me through this”. There is a real power in that… when you must let go of your self-reliance and just be still before God.

  6. SUCH a great discussion. Biblical interpretation is such a huge topic. There is literal – which can be so Pharisaical, and, perhaps the lowest of interpretive forms. Metaphorical and allegorical can be used in many instances, as well as anagogical, which gets into the mystical meaning behind the words. This is more of the “listen to what I mean – not what I say” that Mandy was referring to earlier. Wouldn’t it be easy if our churches and fiath traditions could actually follow that philosophy? Some of our faith traditions hold that we must have command, example and necessary inference in order to understand and interpret. I do not find these words in the Bible at all. For too many years we have been stuck – and have believed the same interpretations. Josha is right: the Bible is a living and breathing document. It is still fun to research, learn new things, and grow like telson7 and Jessica…and always keep our hearts and minds open to the prompting of the holy spirit as we become Jesus to the world.

  7. Great work, thank you. I was searching for a good academic article and you wrote very effectively. I was raised in a Fundamentalist family and still search for answers to why certain types of people are maligned.

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