On April 12 & 13, 2012, Ron Belgau and Justin Lee spoke at Pepperdine University on the issues of LGBT issues in a Christian context. This is an important discussion for the Church to have. We need to teach and exhort with humility and not be afraid to say what the Scripture says. The explanatory blurbs below were sent to me by Ron Belgau and were originally published in the program for the event at Pepperdine.
Practical tips for ending the culture war [Ron Belgau and Justin Lee]
Our culture tells us that gays and Christians are enemies, so how can we as Christians have loving dialogue on the issue of homosexuality that changes hearts and minds for Christ? Ron and Justin will use stories, humor, personal experience, and the Bible to discuss how they can be friends in the midst of strong theological disagreement, and how we as Christians can better show love to the gay community without compromising our convictions. Among the topics Ron and Justin will discuss: Common misconceptions each side has about the other; being missionaries with our language and avoiding the buzzwords that shut down conversation; understanding the difference between behavior and attraction; why dialogue is more effective than debate; and what Paul’s experience in Athens can teach us about representing Christ in the midst of disagreement.
A conversation about the Bible [Ron Belgau and Justin Lee]
Of course, the biggest disagreement in the church is about how to interpret the Bible on this issue. On the second night, Ron and Justin will demonstrate the dialogue techniques taught on the first night by engaging in a public discussion of their differing views on the Bible. The conversation will resemble a debate, but with more grace, compassion, and understanding, designed to help attendees better articulate what they believe and also better understand those who disagree with them—to create a space for more loving conversation in the future rather than inflaming an already tense situation.
And, for those who are interested in more commentary on the subject, see The Great Debate.