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Confession Or Raw Politics?Liberal Nebraska UM's Latest Transgression Only Illustrates Their Ignorance

by James Gibson

It is said that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. That being the case, the latest example of lawlessness offered by same United Methodist sex advocates in Nebraska is neither imitation nor sincere flattery. In an all too obvious attempt to co-opt the language of their perceived "opposition," clergy and lay representatives of the Cornhusker branch of the lavender lobby have issued "A Confessing Statement," spelling out their opposition to the proposed "Defense of Marriage Act" in their state.

Historically, confessional statements have grown out of a concern within the Church over questions of essential doctrine, specifically the question, "Who is Jesus Christ?" It is precisely this question which is at the root of the present crisis within mainline Protestantism. It was in answer to this question that "A Confessional Statement of the Confessing Movement within The United Methodist Church" was issued five years ago. Following historical precedent, this statement articulated the traditional doctrine, rooted in Scripture, of Jesus Christ as Son of God, Savior and Lord and repudiated various contemporary challenges to that doctrine. Mentioned only in passing were such "hot button" issues as homosexuality, and only as examples of contemporary challenges to the authority of Christ's Lordship.

The Nebraska "Confessing Statement" grows not out of a question of essential doctrine but out of a question on an election ballot. The name of Jesus Christ is not even mentioned. Church doctrine, rather than being articulated and defended, is publicly challenged and opposed, notwithstanding the ordination vows of the clergy signatories to uphold that doctrine. Thus, the Nebraska document is not what it claims to be. It is, instead, a raw political statement in which the signatories use their position as "leaders" in The United Methodist Church both to undermine the authority of their own denomination and to influence the outcome of a statewide ballot initiative—an action which would be decried by these same people, if engaged in by their perceived "opposition," as a violation of "separation of church and state."

This latest transgression by same sex advocates is perhaps the most telling illustration to date of their ignorance both of church history and the motives and intentions of their perceived "opposition."

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