Jesus’ message for homosexuals: it gets better

By Randy Roberts Potts There is a story in the Gospel of Mark, Chapter 2, about a little old man … Continued

By Randy Roberts Potts

There is a story in the Gospel of Mark, Chapter 2, about a little old man who wanted to be healed. He couldn’t get off his cot, but he’d heard that Jesus was in town, and that this Jesus was a healer.

Friends came by, took the sides of his little cot, and carried him through town to the house where Jesus was supposed to be, but, when they got there the house was so full they couldn’t get in. They pulled him, cot and all, up to the little thatched roof and proceeded to lower the man down. Jesus forgave the man his sins and told him he was healed and he could take his little cot and walk home. He was healed, instantly, just like that.

2,000 years later, there is a class of people in America who, like this little old man, are looking for healing. My people, as it were. Homosexuals. People whom my grandfather, Oral Roberts, and most of his generation, describe as an abomination.

(File photo of Oral Roberts, the evangelist who rose from humble tent revivals to found a multimillion-dollar ministry and a university bearing his name.)

How can an abomination desire healing?

Gay men and women are knocking at the door of the president, of the Senate, of the Congress, impatient, hoping to get in, hoping to be healed. They are even, at this moment, lowering down their little pink cots from the rafters in capitols across the nation, insisting that their voice be heard.

How can an abomination desire healing?

We could sit and debate, endlessly, whether or not God sees homosexuality as an abomination. He did, clearly, in the early years of the founding of the nation of Israel, but then, he also described the eating of shellfish and the wearing of two different cloths as abominations. We could debate what Jesus meant when he said that the old laws set down in those early years were finished, and could be better summed up in one single, new, all-encompassing law: love thy neighbor as thyself. We could sit and talk, for years, about whether this love extends to homosexuals, whether you can love the sinner but not the sin, whether or not telling these men and women they are going to Hell is part and parcel of the good news Jesus came to Earth to deliver.

We could have this debate, but meanwhile, this same group, these gay men and women, will be clamoring, and begging, for healing. They will be dying, too often, from suicide, unwilling to live in a world where this debate is more valuable than their well being. They will be unable to visit their partner in the hospital. They will be unable to legally marry the partner they have loved, and lived with, for better or for worse, in sickness and in health, for sometimes ten, sometimes twenty, sometimes thirty years, or more. We could look into the pros, and cons, of dismantling “don’t ask, don’t tell,” and whether or not the military can survive with openly-serving gays. We could debate, endlessly, what Jesus would have done.

There are men and women waiting, today, for healing, while the Sadducees and the Pharisees debate. I disagree with much of what my grandfather taught, but he was right about one thing – healing is simple. It is about establishing a point of contact between a source of power and a person in need. There is a need for men and women of all faiths to reach out, in healing, to their gay brothers and sisters, and welcome them as equal citizens, with equal rights, no longer separate. If they have sinned, as the Bible says all men have sinned, then forgive them, and let them go home, healed, and complete. It is time for healing. It is time to be bold. It is time to look gay men and women in the eye and tell them: take up your cots, and walk.

Randy Roberts Potts is the gay grandson of televangelist Oral Roberts.  He has worked with juvenile delinquents on the East Coast, was a social worker in Oklahoma City, and spent five years as a middle school English teacher before deciding to pursue a writing career. Follow him on Twitter @randyrpotts.

  • joe_allen_doty

    Randy Potts (his individual facebook page profile name) told me several weeks ago by private Facebook message that the Oral Roberts family did not want the world to know that Ronald Roberts was gay. And he wasn’t going to out his uncle in respect to their wishes. I asked him, “Why? Ronald outed himself to the city of Tulsa sometime before he died. He had many gay friends, too. Troy Perry, the head of the MCC denomination, outed him in a book he wrote where he had an interview with Ronald here in Tulsa. I knew several people in show business who knew he was gay. I also had several people contact me on the internet who had been in the US Army with Ronald and they knew their friend, Ronald, was gay, too.”I am glad that Randy Potts finally gave in and outed his late uncle, too. I and several other gay people believe that he was murdered although the official TULSA POLICE DEPARTMENT reports say otherwise. I had a person who was with the TPD who told me about the official report. But, Ronald Roberts was found dead in the country NW of Tulsa in Osage County.

  • cubicledweller

    I appreciate Randy Potts’s call for compassion, and agree with him that everyone, ESPECIALLY Christians, should be loving and accepting towards gay people.However… the picture of “healing” he gives in this piece is rather odd. It doesn’t seem to involve any change in the person being “healed”–rather, apparently the rest of us are asked to accept the person’s behavior without question or criticism (behavior we think is potentially harmful, including to the person him/herself).Since Potts told the story about Jesus, I feel I should point out that Jesus often ended his healings with the words “go forth and sin no more.” In other words–yes, you are forgiven, you are healed, you are accepted, you are loved–but you’re also supposed to try to change.Also, homosexual behavior isn’t just mentioned in the Old Testament; it also shows up several times in the letters of Paul.The second half of the essay seems to be saying “just stop debating and accept MY point of view already.” Yes, debates are tumultuous and often unpleasant, but there are genuine disagreements on the table here–your point of view is not necessarily the default position. We should certainly never lose sight of the fact that there are real people involved in these issues, but that doesn’t give you the right to call the debate over and proclaim your side the winner.I’d like to end by again affirming that all people, ESPECIALLY Christians, should be loving towards gay people. They should not be kicked out of families, churches, businesses, or the military simply because they are gay. We are all sinners, and being gay is NOT the worst sin. But that shouldn’t stop us from respectfully and compassionately standing up for our moral principles, from avoiding actively ENCOURAGING behavior we think is wrong, and from trying to work for true healing.

  • peabody3000

    religion isnt real. its a mental construct that exists only in the human mind. sure, that’s just my opinion, but at least its grounded in reason. religion is grounded only in “faith” which by definition is the suspension of reason. religion does not teach love, though it may purportedly attempt to, because it simply cant. love isnt a capacity that is picked up through philisophical teachings. rather it is taught by example, and the most religious among us all often fail miserably to provide that example. if religion disappeared tomorrow, ethics, love, charity and tolerance would not suffer the slightest hit. but.. the central role of political manipulation, which is dividing people in order to control them, certainly would.

  • KelleyWintersPhD

    Randy Potts’ picture of healing is not odd at all. Intolerance, prejudice, false stereotyping and undeserved shame, those are the sins, those are the abominations that divide families, wound innocent souls and tragically take lives. Suppressing human diversity in dark closets of despair is not healing. That is the injury that needs to be healed.

  • HenryJuhala

    I agree with Randy about healing. There is a phrase that says, “from each according to his ability to each according to his need“. Many attribute it to Marx. But, it originates in Acts Chapter 4. Jesus discusses the earthly “miracle” abilities of talents and skills we all have through the gifts and talents God gave us. He gave them for us to wisely use, as it later says in Acts, to distribute that ability “unto every man according to his need“. Or as Randy says. we can be that “point of contact between a source of power and a person in need“. We have a community of gays in great need of healing. I am not talking about “changing” and pretending to be straight. I am talking about real needs. I have seen very little “supernatural” healing when it relates to gays being “cured”. Whole ministries are devoted to it with little success. I know dozens of gays doing all the things the church tells them to do to “change“. Yet, it does not work. Just maybe it is because being gay is not the thing that needs healed. Yet, I have seen healing in the very form that Randy presents. I am talking about gays who are still gay not pretending to be straight. I am talking healing of hurts. Healing separation from family and the churches they love. I am talking emotional healing of scars from bullying and years of emotional beatings by family, church and political communities. Within the Christian tradition, I am talking about healing of those I know in the thousands. That is just ones I am aware of. It is because gays took the initiative. They took their cots to the doors of churches willing to welcome them. They sought to serve and were partnered in ministry without having to pretend to be straight. They went to the communion table and were freely served. They sought to worship while others took their hand and raised them up together. They came to Christ just as they are — a whosoever, believing and calling on the name of Christ. Christ has not turned them away. His grace is sufficient for ALL — including gays. It is only mankind that turned them away. Mankind forced them to remain in their cots. Mankind inflicted ills on them, bullied them, taken their rights away, judged them and sent them to hell without a hearing from God first. It is mankind that has caused deep, long-term emotional scarring. For some, a “supernatural” miracle just might be instantaneous. For most it is going to take years of TLC. The church and society has the very healing ability to help heal those ills, to welcome gays, nurture them and love them unconditionally as Christ commanded. Yes, healing is that simple. Judgment is not man’s to make. It is solely God’s. Healing through love, however, is the calling of the church. Just as a doctor has healing skills, the church surely has the skills to heal a gay community that is hurting and reaching out for healing. From each according to his/her ability to each according to his/her need.

  • Aikane

    I really wish that opponents of gay people will educate themselves about what sexual orientation really is. Being gay or homosexual is NOT ABOUT BEHAVIOR. It is a characteristic of one’s heart and the gender of the one you’re romantically attracted to in your heart is the same gender as you. The sexual behavior may or may not happen, but the romantic orientation in the heart cannot change for those who are 100% gay in the heart.Being a homosexual has more to do with what goes on in the heart and less to do with what goes on in the bedroom.Being gay is different from stealing, different from using drugs, different from smoking, and different from prostitution because it’s about the gender of the one you romantically love in your heart.@CUBICLEDWELLERRandy, thank you so very much for writing this article. A serious social discussion and public education needs to happen to prevent more gay youth from committing suicide because of the homophobic ignorance of those around them. God bless you!

  • GoldenEagles

    What is the origin of the Homoerotic Urge?Aikane says, “Being gay or homosexual is NOT ABOUT BEHAVIOR.”You are making a common mistake in judgment.Surface observations, and conclusions based on them, while well-intentioned, go nowhere when trying to fathom the reason why an individual can be turned against his own God-Given identity. Ask any normal male, and they will tell you, that the most powerful thing in their life is their attraction to women. Sure, men can have an array of other interests, but when you are speaking about the one thing that moves them powerfully, it is their attraction to the opposite sex.And so, we must ask, what in the world could possibly get in the way of what God intended to be the most powerful directive in the life of every male child?There is only one answer to this. The force that derails the God-Given identity comes from the outside, and is associated with forces of evil which are intent on destroying what God has created. This will be proven through sophisticated sensing technology in the not too distant future, that the source of the homoerotic urge has its origin in the black heart of the demonic forces, which reside on the astral plane. The homoerotic urge is broadcast into the astral body of the vulnerable soul, and if the individual acts on the urge, then they become hooked to the demonic controller, who will be able to tug that chain at will. The soul becomes vulnerable to this manipulation when it neglects for too long, its responsibility to work with God our Father to build up a shield of light in the aura. The only solution to this state of enslavement, which threatens the very life of the soul, is to seek the help of God. Freedom from enslavement to the forces of darkness, can only come through the Intercession of God.However, the individual trapped in the homosexual lifestyle has another factor working against him. The connection between the astral body of the victim, and the astral body of the controlling demon causes the victims feeling world to be colored with the demons disdain and contempt towards God. Just as the victim believes the homoerotic urge is a natural expression of the identity, so too does the victim believe that this feeling of disdain towards God represents an attribute of his own natural identity. But it is not true. These are both elements of the demonic manipulation.I believe every individual who is trapped in the homosexual lifestyle knows this is true at some level. They can sense the characteristic of aggressiveness that is associated with every homoerotic urge. I think in some instances it comes upon them when they least expect it. And thus, every homoerotic urge comes with a sense of being manipulated. And they are also aware of the fact that they have an attitude towards God that is not positive. They should add these two factors together, and this will point to the origin of their problem.

  • plasma411

    The idea that homosexuals need to be “healed” is wrong. They need to realize their is nothing wrong with them.Free yourself from religion and its falsehoods.

  • potaboc

    I doubt any reasonable person would say that being born with a homosexual inclination makes one a morally bad person. The position (as I understand it) is that engaging in homosexual behavior is the issue. To say that having an inclination absolves one from moral problems in engaging in behavior is absurd – would anyone extend that to all other forms of behavior? For that matter, how many would use that argument to absolve a person born with the inclination to have sex with six year old children?

  • areyousaying

    Babies and puppies are naturally born without racism and homomphobia. What then would cause people like goldeneagles to become that way when they get older?There is only one answer to this. The force that derails the God-Given identity comes from religion, and is associated with forces of evil which are intent on destroying what God has created.This will be proven through sophisticated sensing technology in the not too distant future, that the source of the homophobia has its origin in the black heart of the demonic religious forces, which reside on the astral plane. The homophobic urge is broadcast into the astral body of the vulnerable soul, and if the individual acts on the urge, then they become hooked to the demonic controller, who will be able to tug that chain at will.The soul becomes vulnerable to this manipulation when it neglects for too long, its responsibility to work with God our Father to build up a shield of light in the aura.The only solution to this state of enslavement, which threatens the very life of the soul, is to seek the help of God. Freedom from enslavement to the forces of darkness, can only come through the Intercession of God.May god give goldeneagles a gay child or grandchild to cure him/her from his/her ignorant, superstitious, evil prejudice. It worked for Lord Cheney so there’s hope for goldeneagles, too.

  • GoldenEagles

    plasma411 says, “Free yourself from religion and its falsehoods.”In the debate over the level of moral depravity that the condition of homosexual enslavement represents, I hear this sentiment expressed often. This is evidence of the demonic (Anti-God) spirit that has invaded the temple of the homosexual. This Anti-God spirit will eventually destroy the soul. Warning Alarms should be going off. What we have in the homosexaul movement, is a soul-detroying agenda.

  • GoldenEagles

    areyousaying says, in parody, “The force that derails the God-Given identity comes from religion ..”This is an absurd starting point for the point you are trying to make. Religion is all about bringing souls closer to God. As souls get closer to God, they understand more clearly, in terms of morality, what it is that keeps people away from achieving that closer relationship. Homosexuality is clearly a condition the drives a wedge of alienation between the soul and God. The possessing spirit, you can hear it every where, shaking its fist in the face of God. As I said, and it should be obvious, that this is a soul-destroying spirit.

  • lepidopteryx

    POTABOC,

  • joe_allen_doty

    This “goldeneagles” person is one or more of the following since Oral Roberts University’s mascot is “Golden Eagles.” I am assuming the person is male in gender.He’s a current ORU student. He’s an ORU alumnus. He’s an employee of ORU. And he can be all three at the same time. When I was a grad Theology student at ORU, I was a part-time employee for a while with the Oral Roberts Evangelistic Association which had legal authority over the University.

  • joe_allen_doty

    Since the late 1970s, I have been following what has been happening in the ex-gay movement and that was because I first saw an article about “Exodus International” in the General Council of the Assemblies of God’s weekly magazine, “The Pentecostal Evangel.” Michael Bussee was the actual founder of Exodus when he was a member of Melodyland Christian Center in Anaheim, CA. The church was named that because it was across the street from Disneyland. I talked to Michael on the phone a few years ago. He left the group when he decided to stop lying about God changing his sexual orientation. I have read more than 100 testimonies endorsed by Exodus International where a person attempted to claim that God changed his or her sexual orientation. But, there was a LOOP HOLE in EVERY ONE of them. They were either never homosexual in the 1st place; they were bisexual; or they were just pretending to be “straight.”

  • joe_allen_doty

    Alan Chambers, the current president of Exodus International, admitted to a CNN reporter, who was interviewing him for Anderson Coopers 360 program, after being heterosexually married and adopting children, he still occasionally experienced same-gender sexual attractions.

  • lufrank1

    Sigh … THE PROBLEM is that so many (especially Catholic Priests and evangelicals) DO NOT REALIZE that homosexuality is a matter of geneotype and sexual hormonal physiology. It is NOT simply a matter of Choice, and attempts at “Curing” are downright mean and confirm the ignorance of those who impose such measures.

  • lufrank1

    Sigh . . Normally, male infants experience a burst of testicular testosterone within a narrow period about the time of birth. The testosterone circulates throughout the blood vascular system, and some of it “binds” with specific glycoproteins at the surface of cells of the hypothalamus of the brain.IT IS NOT A MATTER OF CHOICE! And any attempts to cure homosexuality are stupid/useless and downright CRUEL! If YOU believe that God made YOU . . . you should also believe that God makes Gays!

  • GoldenEagles

    lufrank1 says, “Normally, male infants experience a burst of testicular testosterone within a narrow period about the time of birth.”Talk about superstitions. The superstitions of the materialists are far more outlandish and destructive than anything that has popped up in the domain of religious belief.

  • djmolter

    If you believe it true that we’re all born sinners due to the supposed actions of a Eve in 6th Garden of Eden, the leap to condemning homsexuality isn’t a long one. The big flaw in the Bible is that if God dictated it, he let men interpret and edit it.

  • GoldenEagles

    djmolter says, “The big flaw in the Bible is that if God dictated it, he let men interpret and edit it.Actually that is one of its greatest strengths. It provides the latitude for the exercise of freewill.

  • joe_allen_doty

    Yahweh Elohim (LORD God in English Bibles) did NOT dictate very much of what is in the Bible. There was no such thing as a holy stenographic pool.

  • AcumenProbitas

    It bothers me that Christians treat homosexuality as different from any other sin – as though it’s somehow worse.I am a married man. Sometimes I am tempted to have sex with women besides my wife. What are my options? I can’t help how I feel, I was BORN this way, I desire sex with women! This is a sin, Jesus said that even looking lustfully is equivalent to adultery! The conclusion is simple: I cannot indulge what my flesh wants to do. Whether my flesh wants sex with a man or a woman it makes no difference. Sex outside a marriage of one man to one woman is sinful.We live in a culture that likes clear-cut labels such as gay and straight. Alfred Kinsey, an expert on human sexuality, believed that sexual orientation was more of a spectrum than a binary gay-straight switch. If freed from this binary world view, Christians with same sex attractions might find themselves also attracted to the opposite sex, but not always.Can you be a Christian and be tempted to have same-sex relationships? Absolutely. It’s the same as gossip, hate, adultery, gluttony, etc. But just like with any other sin, we must fight daily to take up our cross and not to give in to our flesh.

  • ScottHollyHenry

    As a conservative Christian and strict constructionist of the Bible, I agree with this article. However, I don’t agree with the political homosexual movement today (post Lawrence vs. Texas). Many of the things they say are rights, are not. Take marriage for instance. Government recognition of marriage is an entitlement, and as such requires strict guidelines that benefit the general welfare of all citizens, not just 10% of them.

  • Alex511

    fr goldeneagles:>…Homosexuality is clearly a condition the drives a wedge of alienation between the soul and God. The possessing spirit, you can hear it every where, shaking its fist in the face of God. As I said, and it should be obvious, that this is a soul-destroying spirit….Nope, sorry, not true, but thanks for playing. Your car is in the alley next to the back door.

  • VisionFromAfar

    GoldenEagles,If you want to say more than a single comment will let you, get your own blog, don’t clog up the comments here.As for your content, I’ll let my good friend Bill say it best:”There is more in heaven and earth than is dreamt of in your philosophy.”

  • GoldenEagles

    VisionFromAfar says, “If you want to say more than a single comment will let you, get your own blog, don’t clog up the comments here.”The idea that a participant in a discussion is limited to one comment is certainly the dream within the totalitarian mind, but from the standpoint of the American tradition, it is a totally absurd proposition.There are an abundance of ideas in my previous posts that offer ignition points for further discussion.Why your mind comes up blank, I suppose, is another commentary on the destructive nature of the demonic influence on the homosexual mind.

  • JUNGLEJIM123

    There is no mention of gays in the 10 Commandments – the true words of God..but there are other sins listed that many of you do on a daily basis. … dishonor your mothers and fathers, tell falsehoods and lies, commit adultery, have abortions etc …..so I dont think God is going to cast into hell two people who love each other and have faith in God as many gays do.

  • GoldenEagles

    JUNGLEJIM123 says, “There is no mention of gays in the 10 Commandments … “I believe a good case can be made for the proposition that the condition of homosexual enslavement breaks all Ten of the Commandments.

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