Last year, attention whore J.D. Hall, pastor of Fellowship Baptist Church in Sidney, Montana (the church’s website proudly reports that men such as Fundamentalists Paul Washer, James White, Voddie Baucham, Chris Rosebrough, Douglas Wilson, Ray Comfort, Phil Johnson, Justin Peters, and Sye Ten Bruggencate have preached there) , wrote an “apology” letter to the LGBT community. He reposted his letter today on the Pulpit & Pen website — a trash repository for all things Fundamentalist, Baptist, and Calvinistic. When I first saw the headline of Hall’s post I thought, has J.D. Hall had a come-to-Jesus moment? Dare I hope that Hall is repudiating his hatred for LGBT people? These thoughts were quickly extinguished by the fact that unless Hall is admitting he is a transvestite Baptist, there’s zero chance that he will turn from his gay-hating ways.
Hall used his “apology” letter to the LGBT community to remind them of the following:
Dear Gay Community,
As a Christian who has been forced to evaluate where I stand in recent days in light of Scripture, in both tone and message, I would like to apologize for myself and other Christians…
1. I’m sorry that any of us ever referred to you as a “gay community.” Really, that’s not helpful. A “community” is a group of individuals that either live in the same place or share the same values. Sodomy (defined as unnatural and immoral sexual behavior) is not a value. Sodomy is a deviancy. Now, if you defined “community” as sharing interests and not values, then there could theoretically be a gay community because you hold unnatural and immoral sexual behavior as a common interest. However, to call you a “community” would legitimize this sin in a way that we don’t legitimize any other sin. For example, we don’t recognize “the thieving community” or the “the lying community” or “the bank-robbing community” or “the rapist community” or the “white collar criminal community.” If communities could be founded upon self-destructive behavior, those communities would be self-defeating, and a self-defeating community is no community at all. In fact, a truly “gay community” would be extinct within one generation. Your unnatural sexual deviancy leads to death; legitimate communities are self-populating and regenerative. It was a dumb term for Christians to start using, and I apologize for all of those who inadvertently give credence to the narrative that yours is a community and not a group of sinners who share in community-destroying behavior.
2. I’m sorry that Christians have made a habit of referring to you as LGBT or LGBTQ or by any other acronym or term, identifying you by your sin. First, it is unfair and unhelpful to identify you by your sin. This is actually discriminatory against you, because we don’t behave this way toward any other group of sinners. Adulterers don’t find their identity in adultery. Liars don’t find their identity in lying. Gluttons don’t find their identity in gluttony. We tend to view others as “people who happen to [fill in the blank with any number of sins].” We haven’t viewed you as people – first and foremost – who suffer from the sinful desire of sodomy. Now, you have self-identified as LGBT, because there is a unique tendency when it comes to homosexuality to let the sin consume you as a person, but we should not have participated in the unfortunate reality that your identity has become wrapped up in sinful behavior. If you thought of yourself as a person who suffers from homosexual desires, rather than as a homosexual, you might realize that you’re more than your specific sexual deviancy.
3. I’m sorry that we’ve given you the impression that “self-identifying” is a thing. Yes, I know I’ve used the term to get a point across in this letter of apology. But, here’s the thing…you don’t get to “self-identify.” God gave you your identity. Bruce Jenner is not Caitlyn. That’s silly. He’s a guy who emasculated himself to look like a woman, adding breasts and makeup and tucking appendages. It’s a game of dress up, essentially. And if he were to remove his genitalia, he still wouldn’t be a woman. He’d be a man without his genitalia. Bruce Jenner will never have PMS. That’s because he’s not a woman. It’s really, really mean for Christians to be anything but straightforward with this reality. I’m convinced that Bruce Jenner doesn’t have people around him that loves [sic] him, or else they would tell him that he doesn’t look like a beautiful woman. He looks like the person that kids on the bus snicker at behind them, and dare one another to go up and touch. Christians, if we were loving, would say “Bless your heart, but you’re not a woman. You’re a man trying to look like a woman, but no one really thinks you’re accomplishing that so well. You are Bruce, and God made you to be Bruce, and you can never be Caitlyn.”
6. Finally, I apologize for all the professed Christians that you thought had convictions, only to find out that they were sniveling, driveling compromise machines. It probably surprised you how they changed their tune and their tone when the Supreme Court ruled. That’s especially tragic. It’s tragic, because I know that your conscience is cutting you. I know that even truth suppressed in unrighteousness hurts. It’s painful, I’m sure. You might even be on the look-out for conviction and resolve and truth, and while perhaps being glad to see the rainbow filter go on your professing-Christian Facebook friends’ profiles, you’re a little let down that there isn’t an unchanging reality out there somewhere. Down deep, you know that you need that. I’m sorry for all those who have professed Christ, but haven’t loved you (or Him) enough to dig their heels in and speak a truth that’s as helpful as it is inconvenient.
I sincerely hope you’ll forgive us for these shortcomings, and we strive to do better in the future.
You can read Hall’s non-apology letter here.
While Evangelicals fall all over themselves attempting to explain that Steven Anderson is some sort of lone homo-hater, Hall’s “apology” letter is a reminder that hatred of LGBT people can be found in EVERY Evangelical church. (Hall’s church, for example, is a Southern Baptist congregation that self-identifies as Reformed Baptist.) I am sure Hall is a proud as a peacock over his “apology” letter. Ha! Ha! Ha! No apology here, you sexual deviants. God’s still hates you, and since I, a properly circumcised Calvinist, love what God loves and hate what God hates, I hate YOU! As Steven Anderson does, J.D. Hall and the Pen & Pulpit blog have a large following — including 2,373 likes on Facebook and 6,708 followers on Twitter. Hall and other Pulpit & Pen contributors also use a radio program, podcasts, frequent blog posts to promote their version of Evangelical Christianity. Evangelicals who now realize how their vitriol towards the LGBT community caused much harm need to own the fact that there are numerous Halls and Andersons within Evangelicalism (and the Southern Baptist Convention). Granted, many of these haters will never preach hateful sermons as Anderson does, or pen hurtful “apology” letters. Many Evangelicals are too “nice” to ever do such things, but don’t be deceived by their niceness. Behind closed doors, in the safety of their faggot-free churches and homes, these “nice” Evangelicals continue to rail against the letters of the rainbow, condemning LGBT people to hell.
It’s this kind of putrid nonsense that creates and nurtures an environment in which 49 people can be massacred for no reason other than they’re gay. Jesus would be so proud.
This is True Christianity© at work in the world. Preacher J.D. loves the Kool-aid and no matter what happens to reveal his depravity and hatred, he reaches again for his favorite drink.
His actions, his thinking (sic) process in his letter reveal the smarmy smiling love of those so filled with hatred that they will beat you to a pulp for your own good without ever frowning. As they lash out at you, it is they who really suffer, not you in receiving their blows of correction. What a mean-hearted son of a Prick asshole you are, J.D. Hall. Drink up!
(Please let me take a moment to add that the Fellowship Baptist Church, not just J.D.’s but all of them, are a symptom of our failure as human beings. I would like to apologize to all the Fellowship Baptist Churches for calling them rude names over time. I realize now that they do not deserve this treatment and that they helplessly live out what was long-ago decided for them, what was meant to be. They harm innocence because they cannot help but do so, as demanded, as ordained by the holy of holies. I apologize, sincerely for for saying they are sons of pricks and so forth because they are truly the unfolding of a divine plan in our world. Let us prey.
(Oh, and J.D., fuck off….)
Holy Christ on a cracker! Now I want to go to Montana to punch this jerk in the throat! Ok, maybe not, but it’s assholes like this putz that drove one of my High School friends to kill herself (her family were all Southern Baptists and in NJ that was a rarity)
THe irony is that this sort of person better hope that the Bible is not true. As my reading of the New Testament suggests that self righteous folk such as this were the ones that were said to be in danger of the fires of Hell.
Still lucky for him the Bible is not true and there is no Hell.
When I first read his ‘apology’ I thought it must have been a parody as I thought surely no-one could be that big an ass-hole.
All fools like him want is attention. They court controversy so that they get “amen, brother!” and pats on the back from their fellow evangelicals. They want to be Big Fish in their dwindling pond.
In doing so, they ignore one of the most basic teachings of their own religion. “They tie up heavy, burdensome loads and lay them on men’s shoulders, but they themselves are not willing to lift a finger to move them. All their deeds are done for men to see. They broaden their phylacteries and lengthen their tassels. They love the places of honor at banquets, the chief seats in the synagogues, the greetings in the marketplaces, and the title of ‘Rabbi’ by which they are addressed.” (Matthew 23:4-7)
As someone who is both gay and Christian, my stomach turned as I read the sanctimonious and sarcastic pseudo-apology by J D Hall. Rather than disputing him on his level, I’ll instead quote God’s own words with John 3:16. “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son, that whosoever believeth in him shall not perish but have everlasting life.” To me, this is the most important verse in the Bible and the one word I love most is “whosoever”. Doesn’t matter if you’re black or white, saint or sinner, or, yes, straight or gay, God welcomes all. He gave us the gift of his son, Jesus, who died for us on the cross. To find eternal salvation, all anyone must do is believe in Christ and welcome him into your heart. All the J D Halls of the world can’t take that away from you. God bless.
Ponchoboi, how you garner pleasure and meaning from the fact that an all-powerful being allowed his son to be tortured and killed is beyond some of us here. You are correct that it does not matter whether you are black or white, saint or sinner etc. because Christianity harms everyone equally. It disrespects each person without regard for their essential self and it encourages one to make statements like yours that cannot be supported with evidence. Just being something other than heterosexual is enough to get you into trouble in the vast majority of evangelical Christian churches but you persist in quoting scripture. Why? Because only you and a few others have got it finally right? Because you ‘felt’ God?
I suggest to you that you are not that bad a person and that your adoption of the stance ‘sinner’, is not worthy of your humanity. You are not that bad, I am sure. You do not need magic Jesus whose Father did not give a shit about him. What father would ever agree to such a horrid scenario as the Jesus story? I guess you have to be all-powerful to really appreciate what God did when he could have snapped his fingers and stopped it all. He could have pulled a jigger of human insight out of his hat and given it freely to all people so that they would not need to build walls to hide behind or carry guns to go shopping. But this all-powerful magic man did what? Let his own son be hung on a cross because I am born evil? The bullshit just gets deeper and deeper. And you know the weirdest thing, Ponchoboi? The most powerful force in the universe needs my MONEY! Imagine that. (George Carlin whispered in my ear.)
Mr. Gerencser – You actually pastored? Stunning. Sadly, you appear an object lesson RE I Cor. 10:12. So you discovered defending sexual deviants more fulfilling that say, defending the Christian faith? One can only wonder what damage you left in your wake “pastoring” for 25 years.
I will say, as one a bit older than you, that at least you backhandedly encourage me in one way. Doubts I may have about the utility and consistency of my Christian life over the 45 years since my conversion – tend too look less compelling and discouraging in the shadow of your epistemologically emptiness. I am genuinely sorry for you.
I much prefer defending justice, civil rights, and equal protection under the law.
As far as damage is concerned, all Evangelical pastors leave damage in their wake. ‘Tis the nature of the cult and its beliefs.
You don’t genuinely do anything. You said your piece….I hope you feel better now.
Your epistemologically emptiness?
Regarding knowledge and rational enquiry, Gerencser leaves you in his dust, judge-man for Gawd, lover of delusion. There is no doubt that Gerencser did much damage as a pastor because he did his job well, exactly as Christianity demands. And you, sir, are another sad example of the hatred so widespread, so prevalent in Christian love (sic). It makes me feel genuinely sorry to know that you feel it is okay to toss the term, ‘sexual deviants’ and define it not with a dictionary or decent humanity but with an old book of lies and far-fetched stories. You have become perhaps less human than you think through your ‘conversion’.
Hall’s letter is one of the best I’ve read, hitting the target directly in the center of it’s bulls-eye, revealing how the sodomites have classified themselves as an imaginary community instead of an individual with few if any desirable absolutes. Not knowing about JD or the Pulpit and Pen before now, I shall be visiting their postings from henceforth. Bruce, you’ve done an astonishing job of inciting others to display their hatred and eruptions of outwardly displayed depravity, not to be outdone but by those Pharisee’s who incited the crowd to shout for Barabbas’s release while demanding the crucifixion of Christ. You’re aware of the typical verses that condemn you as a person and pagan, such as ‘if they were of us, they would not have departed from us”, but there are others which reveal that your posts are being used for God’s glory, amazing isn’t it, makes me shudder to realize how your hatred Glorifies God and no matter if you preach the Gospel or attack it, you’re glorifying the Lord. Your best effort to discredit Christ or His bride, casting darkness so void of light that a black hole would be consider a star only makes the words, life and Glory of the Lord shine brighter ! “The world hated the light, and it comprehended it not”. EVERYTHING you and I do brings Glory to God, you’re hatred of Christ will be used just like Esau’s hatred, God said He created Esau for one purpose, to destroy Him so God’s people will obtain more faith that He IS GOD and He loves HIS PEOPLE. God said He did the same thing with Pharaoh in Romans 9, but somehow you think your efforts to discredit the Lord is going to exceed those depraved works of Esau and Pharaoh? , take your best kicks against the ‘Rock’, Bruce, doing so is simply revealing to others the truth of the Lords POWER, Wisdom, GRACE to those He has called. Maybe someday you will see that ‘kicking the Rock’ only hurts your foot, Proverbs says that in the end Wisdom will laugh at your ignorance. “””When He thunders, the waters in the heavens roar; He causes the clouds to rise from the ends of the earth. He generates the lightning with the rain and brings forth the wind from His storehouses. Every man is senseless and devoid of knowledge; every goldsmith is put to shame by his idols. For his molten images are a fraud, and there is no breath in them. They are worthless, a work to be mocked. In the time of their punishment they will perish.…”” ( Jeremiah 10) What you consider treasures, Bruce, are just worthless idols which wasted your limited time until your ‘appointment’ on the eternal calendar arrives. Hebrews 9:27
I sure am glad “God” is using my writing to advance his cause. Which God?
Your comment is a reminder of how Bible literalism corrupts the mind, rendering believers unable to rationally think and reason. Instead of engaging my story at face value, you quote Bible verses, thinking an imaginary deity has the final say on anything.
As far as JD Hall is concerned, your love of his letter says volumes about you as a person and the Christianity you say you believe. Hall is a bigot, yet you think he’s wonderful. Would Jesus really approve of you hanging out with the bigoted Pharisees of today?
I know nothing I can say to you will matter. Until you are disabused of the notion that the Bible is an inerrant, infallible book written by unknown men as they were moved by the Holy Spirit, it is impossible to have a thoughtful discussion with you.
Thanks for commenting.
This so called pastor the deliverer of God’s love is a judgemental bigot asshole who came into a store and degraded and yelled his hipocracy at a poor 20 something transgender female. He got no support from the other patrons at the store and looked like a crazy man. In fact a very strong woman went rounds with him in the parking lot telling him it’s not his place to judge it’s only God’s job. I hope he enjoys the hate crime and disorderly conduct he’s going to be charged with.
That wasn’t an apology that was a rant from a man who thinks he is god…you are not god and your judgment is worthless.