Sunday, January 13, 2013

Christian Agnosticism

Being a gay Christian is like a piece of legislation grudgingly passed by the House of Representatives and grudgingly signed by President Obama. Both sides see too many fundamental flaws for it to be considered worthwhile. Some see it as dangerous, harmful, and a slippery slope to the other side.

I identified as a Christian (at 5 yrs old) long before I identified as gay (realized I was gay about 10, didn't identify as such until 19 or so...but boy oh boy THAT is another story...). However I’m much more confident and secure in my “gay-ness” (ha) than I am in my Christianity. That is why these days I choose to label myself a Christian agnostic. What does that mean exactly? Being a technical writer by trade, I will use bullet points to explain:
  • Even if the Bible is inerrant (and I have serious doubts about that – see anything written by Bart Ehrman), most of it has been grossly misinterpreted and abused in order to wield power over others
  • Nevertheless, I believe the Bible is an incredibly useful book when taken in historical and literary context
  • IF it is true that God requires holiness and perfection, then my only hope is that Christ’s death and resurrection covers that for me
  • I don’t believe in a literal hell in the sense that I don’t believe God sends people he created to a place of eternal torment – if a hell like this does exist, I don’t want to have anything to do with God
  • I believe that loving and seeking connection with other human beings, NOT as a means to an end (thank you Andrew Marin), is the ultimate purpose in life
  • I believe truly following Christ and his teachings brings a lot of personal fulfillment, difficulty, joy, and pain
  • I do not believe in proselytizing in regards to theological dogma – I believe in loving people where they are, and sharing my journey (if asked) – I believe in listening to others and learning from them
  • I don’t know 100% for sure if God exists, and if God exists, what exact form he or she has. I choose to relate to God through Jesus and through a Christianity based on loving people. Whether the person is an athiest or a fundamentalist doesn't matter. (Side note: in general I find it much easier to get along with athiests than I do with Christians. The athiests I know have better things to do than try to convince me that there is no God. And they appreciate that I don't ever try to convince them to my specific thoughts and opinions about God.)
  • I fail at loving people almost constantly
This is a snapshot of my spiritual journey today. What about you?


Kevin C said...

Hey Kevin,

I agree the Bible has been “misinterpreted and abused in order to wield power over others”, but I wonder, is that a reflection of Scripture or a reflection of its followers? I think much of this started in the 4th century when Constantine fought a civil war. God supposedly gave him a vision; he put crosses on his shields and won the war. We’ve been kicking ass in the name of Christ ever since. So much for “turning the other cheek”, “loving my neighbor as myself” or walking as Christ walked. I think as Christians, I (we) have often attributed to Scripture ideas that it was never intended to convey. This, however, is not the fault of the Bible.

Greg Boyd (Boyd went to school with Ehrman) has some interesting responses to him at if you’re interested.

I love your third bullet point. That is my only hope too.

You ask, “What about you?” I have been thinking about how in the Old Testament, the priests had to sacrifice lambs, goats, etc. that were “without blemish.” God saw this “perfect sacrifice” and not the sin of the people. Now, God sees the perfect sacrifice of His Son and not my sin. I am trying to let that really sink in. I think if I truly believed it, I’d be a whole lot more thankful to God and loving toward others.

I really enjoy your posts and will be praying that God makes His presence known as you journey on.

Kevin said...

Great thoughts KC, especially the historical context. I will check out that link from Greg Boyd. Funny thing is: I thought reading Ehrman would obliterate my faith, but I think in the long run it strengthened it. I'm thinking about writing a post along those lines. I think it helps that Ehrman himself is a pretty gracious person--he's not one who mocks theism, just explains his own finding and conclusions and why atheism is his choice.

Anonymous said...

Hey Kevin,

Great thoughts here and on your blog as a whole! I really appreciate your candor and your honesty...both essentials for the journey of faith. True faith, in a sense, is always agnostic in that faith is not knowledge, but rather it is trust. Which is good news because it means that the opposite of faith isn't doubt it's fear. Anyway, i've enjoyed reading your thoughts and I look forward to reading more.
peace, Dan

Anonymous said...


I ran across your blog on a mutual friend's FB page. I assure you of our love for you and respect for your viewpoints. I'd love to engage you on a variety of topics when you have time, feel safe and have sufficient motivation. I have some disagreements, but more interest in finding where we see things in similar ways.

In the mean time rest assured that I miss you and hope you are well.

David Kaiser
(One of those crazy Evangelicals)

Kevin said...

Hi David! Thanks for writing. :) I have to be brutually honest and say that I do NOT really feel safe engaging these topics. As George Costanza would say: "It's not you, i'ts me." I think I have still a ways to go for that. I started this blog as a way to share my own, personal, ongoing story. I honestly have no interest in trying to convince you on the rightness or wrongness of my "positions." I'm a lousy debater. I probably am sounding close-minded about this, and in truth I least right now. Anyway, it was great to hear from you and I have fond memories of you and K at your house and with the youth group! I can't believe how long ago that was. Arg! I hope you and your whole fam are doing well too. Thanks so much for reaching out!! --Kevin