I have spent a number of years engaged in Jewish-Christian dialogue. More recently, I have been involved in extensive exchanges with Muslim scholars. I regularly visit Utah for off-the-record discussions with Mormon leaders about deep disagreements between Mormons and evangelicals. I approach all these conversations with great enthusiasm.
During the fourth century, at the height of the Arian controversy in Constantinople, one Christian wrote that it was impossible to go into a bakery for a loaf of bread without debating the nature of Christ. Was he the eternal Son of the eternal Father or was there a time when he was not?
The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America’s top legislative body had a full plate as it convened in Milwaukee in mid-August—major statements or initiatives on evangelism, mission, worship, health care and the Middle East, as well as an invitation to join a new ecumenical group.
Robert Gagnon’s treatment of my own work in his book The Bible and Homosexual Practice is anything but irenic. “Wink’s analysis has all the theological sophistication of a math test or football game: sixteen sexual policies in the Bible we no longer heed versus just four that we do.
It was inevitable that the antihomosexual lobby would develop something equivalent to a neutron bomb designed to wipe out the homosexual lobby without (it is hoped) altogether destroying the church. I refer to a tendentious study by Robert A. J. Gagnon of Pittsburgh Theological Seminary.