What I learned from the Baptists

greencroft_gallery_images-6Greencroft has it own TV Channel 13.  Every Sunday Morning it broadcasts the College Mennonite Church services live. A recording of the Sunday morning service of the First Baptist Church of Goshen is broadcast on Tuesday at 8:00 p.m. So the residents have options.

This week My Joy and I listened to a service from the First Baptist Church.  The title of the sermon was “Lessons from a Lefty” based on the story of left-handed Ehud in Judges 3:12-30.  (To read the biblical story click here) The preacher did well by explaining the story’s context.  My Joy found the story so crude that she went home midway through the sermon.  She missed the best part.

The pastor described Ehud’s left-handedness as a gift from God used in God’s service.  He urged his hearers to accept a unique trait of their own as a gift from God to be used in God’s service.  The point of the sermon should be well taken.

IMG_2049Evangelist Dorothy J. Harding, a recent visitor to Greencroft was born in Mobile, Alabama. She had an alcoholic and abusive father. She uses her gift to sing the Gospel for drug addicts on the streets and in jails.

There was a time when right-handed teachers insisted that small left-handed children use their right hands. The children were unhappy and the teachers failed to secure a permanent change of behavior.  You may be surprised by the left-handed black man you see if you click here.

IMG_2050This morning My Joy and I went to a Life-Long Learning class on Psychology and Daily Living instructed by Duane Kauffman H B. (The H B stands for Human Being in place of the usual PHD.)

A person’s psychological views may be based on anecdotal evidence. My first understanding of homosexuality was based on the testimonies I heard from believing gays and lesbians. They said that as children they thought they were evil and condemned. They struggled with fears and frustration as the church, community, and family members turned against them. Every one I listened to insisted that they had not chosen their sexual orientation.  This narrative was common, and I believed it.

I’ve since learned that the American Psychological Association has studied same sex orientation and supports the stories I heard from gays and lesbians.  You may explore the observations of the APA on same sex attraction by clicking here.


The professor at work

Professor Kauffman listed “Revelation” as the last source of a psychological view.  Some believers cling to a point of view gained from the Bible against all odds.

What did I learn from the Baptist preacher?  Only that left-handedness is a gift from God and that it should be used in God’s service.  I believe the preacher could consistently preach that same sex attraction is also a gift from God to be used in God’s service.

About Martin Lehman

I was born 92 years ago, the son of a Mennonite pastor and organic gardener in Franklin County, Pennsylvania. At age 10 I was baptized as a member of the Marion Mennonite Church. I own the "Old Fool" moniker because I want to walk the Jesus Way even though the world and much of the church takes me as a fool for doing so. In my life I have moved from being a young conservative to an elderly radical. I tell that story in My Faith Journey posted on my website.
This entry was posted in Biblical Interpretation, Church, Faith, Family, Homosexuality, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to What I learned from the Baptists

  1. myron augsburgere says:

    Martin, my brother; there are no moral implications of being left-handed. Myron

    • Yes, my esteemed brother. There are no moral implications in left-handedness. But I do see moral implications when persons of same sex orientation are rejected or discriminated against by a church in the name of Jesus.

  2. Bob Buzzard says:

    Thank you Martin! You have warmed my heart. I pray that I may be used in the growing Reign of God. –Bob

  3. Sara Alice Zimmerly says:

    Sure, we learn from many other people of faith. For example, a few things I picked up from a few others who have influenced my life. There are others.
    – “The blood of the martyers is the seed of the church” Turtillian
    – “Here I stand. I can do no other” Martin Luther
    – ” The world is my parish” John Wesley
    – ” Here’s how the high church routine goes, and what it stands for ” Jane
    – ” This is not my church (it’s Christ’s, and I need to remember that) Dave
    – “This is the Word of the Lord. Thanks be to God” Episcopalians
    – ” We are guests in this country, and I will be a good guest. Our allegiance is elsewhere” Dr, Rubinstein
    -“We live on God’s promises, not His explanations” Pat – BSF
    – “Peace and its pursuit are the ultimate bravery” Chuck
    – “God knows my name” Isaiah 43:1

    • Of the remembered and valued statements the one I like best is “We are guests in this country and I will be a good guest. Our allegiance is elsewhere” by Dr. Rubinstein. Allegiance to the “elsewhere” has made us valued residents of this world, and put us in the most danger. Our pastors often end reading of the Bible with the Episcopalian statement, “This is the Word of the Lord. Thanks be to God” and I don’t like it. It seems to me that it confuses the “imperfect” written word with the Perfect Word that is Jesus. Thanks for responding, Sara Alice.

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