January 14, 2007

Jim & Tammy Faye's Son A GLBT-Friendly Minister

Many of you probably remember Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker, who led the PTL ministry and later fell HARD in disgrace. Their som Jay encountered his own hard times, having issues with drugs and alcohol after his parents suffered through their debacle. Jay has bounced back, however, and has a ministry of his own. A primary target of his outreach is to punk rockers. He is also reaching out to the GLBT community, which automatically makes him a target of those who have not received the enlightenment.

J. Lee Grady is one of those folks and has written a column for Charisma magazine (1/12/07 in archives) where he takes a very condescending and dismissive attitude torward Jay Bakker and gay affirming Christians in general. He writes:

Jay has made it clear that he embraces what he calls a “gay-affirming” gospel. He told Mother Jones magazine that he came to the conclusion that homosexuality is an acceptable lifestyle by “looking deeper in the Bible” and by visiting a gay-affirming church. He also admitted that one of his biggest ministry donors stopped supporting his work when he embraced this radical new theology.

I don’t mean to pick on Jay. As a child he was the innocent victim of appalling religious hypocrisy. But he’s a big boy now, 31 to be exact, and if he’s going to be in the game with the adults he needs to play by the rules.

I’m blowing the whistle. Consider this an official apostasy alert.

Grady added:

It (GLBT affirming doctrine) welcomes everyone with a polite “come as you are” mantra—but in the end is incapable of breaking the power of addiction or sexual dysfunction. It uses feel-good words such as “tolerance,” “acceptance” and “grace,” terms that sound hip and sexy in today’s permissive culture. It is a golden calf, shiny and seductive, forged by those who think they can rewrite God’s word and start a new religion.

This gay-affirming “gospel” is a toxic heresy that must be addressed boldly from our pulpits in 2007. I pray there is enough moral backbone left in the church to face the challenge.

When did words like acceptance and grace become "feel-good words?" God's grace is one of the main themes in the Bible, hardly some hip and sexy phrase symptomatic of a permissive culture. These are words of love, not intollerance like the Phairasees in Jesus' time displayed.

I pray there is enough moral backbone amongst GLBT Christians and their allies to stand up in the face of such intollerant ministers who think they have it all figured out but come up woefully short regarding the place of gay and lesbian people in God's kingdom.


  1. Hmm, "grace" as hip and sexy? You capture the disconnect well.

  2. I think another key aspect of Grady's argument is the assumption that GLBT affirming churches have a "come as you are" attitude, like he proposes. I don't see that. I see no one in any organizations I'm a part of that are GLBT friendly saying that people can do anything they want. They don't condone divorce or adultery. They don't advocate pornography or idolatry. They don't say it's okay to hurt, abuse, or use anyone else. Those in same-sex/gender relationships still have the same standards as anyone else. I think that is what makes me the most angry, too: an assumption of lax values because of inclusion.

  3. I've been really getting acquainted with Jay Bakker's ministry over the last few years, and I'm so excited to see that he's taken such a strong stand for the GLBT community.

    The people are real, their dreams are sincere, and their love for God is incredible That's what makes it such a profound example of God's love... and it's what makes it such a threat to people like Grady.

    Grady's verbally violent language is the same kind of thing we expect from the likes of Lou "the Agenda" Sheldon and others who have accused the GLBT community of "recruiting" children for the cause.

    Alas, they truly believe they're doing God a favor by attacking those of us who are in the GLBT community or supporters.

    Love never fails.

  4. Well said people. And look at who is saying that gay folks condone addiction, violence, abuse of children, adultery and divorce...

    I'm OH SO OVER straight folks who think they have the insight and intimacy to only speak negatively of gay people and gay lives, forgetting altogether that NON GAY people are addicts, sexually irresponsible and abuse their own children through neglect and poverty and non custody.

    I don't buy any heterosexual supremacy and more than supremacy based on gender or color.

    That Jay Bakker believes more supremely in equality...and justice means that he's been listening to the Jesus way, and is willing to make sacrifices those with supremacist attitudes will not.
    I have found that going the distance with the misunderstood, those to whom justice HAS been denied, does mean love.
    Love in it's purest form.

    The kind that sees God where God is...

    The difference between me, and the anti gay straight folks.
    Is that I as a straight person listen to and believe what gay folks have to tell me.
    And I am IN NO PLACE to argue, dispute or ignore what gay folks have to say for themselves.
    I went to gay folks to learn about gay folks.

    I wouldn't go to a straight person who doesn't see gay folks even as HUMAN BEINGS to do so.

    Their, 'I read the Bible' isn't a license for supremacy, it's a legacy of how far we have come as a race.
    And it's true...the standards can and want to met by gay folks.

    It's the anti gay who keep moving the goal post against gay folks.
    Knowing full well, no such thing is the standard for straight folks anyway.