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UM Pastor And Seminary Prof. Publishes Bookó"Jesus Was Gay"


Book Announcement from The Pilgrim Press...

April 30, 2003

NEW TESTAMENT SCHOLAR ARGUES THAT JESUS WAS GAY

Cleveland -- New Testament theologian Theodore W. Jennings, Jr. asks the question: Was Jesus Gay? He explores the delicate question of Jesus' sexuality in a book just released by The Pilgrim Press: "The Man Jesus Loved: Homoerotic Narratives from the New Testament."

"This book," says Jennings," is an attempt to carefully and patiently explore texts from the Gospels that suggest something about Jesus' own erotic attachments and the attitude toward same-sex relationships that may be fairly extrapolated from the traditions about Jesus."

Jennings is an ordained minister in The United Methodist Church and professor of biblical and constructive theology at United Church of Christ-related Chicago Theological Seminary. He is a graduate of Duke University and received his Ph.D. from Emory University.

In his survey, Jennings addresses such subjects as sexual minorities in the ancient world (e.g., eunuchs), the role of the "beloved disciple" described in John's Gospel, the story of the nude youth in the garden found in Mark, and Jesus' often unconventional teaching about marriage and family relationships in the ancient world. In regards to the latter, the author argues that the invocation of "marriage and family values" in contemporary debates to disparage same-sex relationships is not consistent with Jesus' own attitude toward such relationships.

Jennings offers a legion of provocative examples and other evidence from the New Testament canon and related literature dealing with the early traditions of Jesus. Ultimately, he concludes that while there is no simple answer to the question, he thinks that considerable evidence supports the view the Jesus' primary affectional relationship was with another man, one who is called in the Gospel of John as "the disciple Jesus loved."

Jennings is the author of several previous books, including "Loyalty to God: The Apostles' Creed in Life and Liturgy" (Abingdon Press, 1992), "Good News to the Poor: John Wesley's Evangelical Economics" (Abingdon Press, 1990),and "Beyond Theism: A Grammar of God-Language" (Oxford University Press,1985). He is also author of the forthcoming "The Insurrection of the Crucified: The Gospel of Mark as Theological Manifesto" (Exploration Press).

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