The Hatewatch blog is managed by the staff of the Intelligence Project of the Southern Poverty Law Center, an Alabama-based civil rights organization.

Lively’s Letter to LGBT Community: I Love You, But You Are Sinners

By Ryan Lenz on October 26, 2011 - 2:21 pm, Posted in Anti-LGBT

Anti-gay activist Scott Lively has something to say to the LGBT community he has vilified for two decades on three continents: You’re all sinners, undeserving of welcome or affirmation from any truly Christian church.

But God loves you, and you should seek help.

In an open letter to the LGBT community, published Monday on the website of his Abiding Truth Ministries, Lively claimed to have received a message from God that his approach to “the homosexual issue” had been wrong. It was not God’s role for him to smear gays and lesbians, it seems, but rather to extend them an olive branch on the way to salvation.

“I received a message known in charismatic Christian circles as a prophetic ‘word of knowledge,’ which said in essence that God would soon use me to lead some homosexuals to Him,” Lively wrote. “I love you and I want you to be saved. If you want to know more about overcoming homosexuality through Christ, I urge you to contact Exodus International.”

Exodus International is among the largest proponents of so-called “reparative therapy,” with 270 ministries in 18 countries. Based on a foundation of pseudo-science, the practice of “curing” homosexuality has been called sharply into question by virtually all major American medical, psychiatric and psychological counseling organizations. In 2006, for example, the American Psychological Association declared, “There is simply no sufficiently scientifically sound evidence that sexual orientation can be changed.” Therapies, while they vary greatly among clinics, generally focus on “correcting sexuality” through lessons that integrate Biblical teaching.

Despite the lack of evidence that someone’s sexual orientation can be changed, Lively refuses to budge on his condemnations of same-sex attraction and the false promise that therapy can turn gays and lesbians into heterosexuals.

“Mature Christians know that a sin is a sin,” he wrote. “I am appealing to you to begin to agree with God about homosexual sin, and to turn away from the seductive lie that God approves of homosexuality.”

A longtime anti-gay activist, Lively was communications director for the Oregon Citizens Alliance, which backed unsuccessful state legislation in 1992 that would have listed homosexuality as an “abnormal behavior” on par with pedophilia and masochism. He went on to serve as California director of the Tupelo, Miss.-based American Family Association, another particularly hard-line anti-gay group, whose chief mouthpiece, Bryan Fischer, has called for the criminalization of homosexuality. (The Intelligence Report, earlier this year, added both Abiding Truth Ministries and the American Family Association to its list of anti-gay hate groups.)

But Lively is perhaps best known for co-authoring The Pink Swastika: Homosexuality in the Nazi Party, which claims “the Nazi party was entirely controlled by militaristic male homosexuals throughout its short history.” (No serious historian agrees.) More recently, he has been infamously associated with efforts to lobby for legislation in Uganda that would make homosexuality an offense punishable by death – a bill that Uganda’s parliament recently voted to continue considering.

With this baggage, Lively’s outreach to those lured by the “dangerous lie” of homosexuality, quite understandably, has the pitch of just another condemnation.

“If I hated you (as the devil surely does) I would not give you this warning,” Lively wrote. “In fact, if the line into heaven was graded by one’s good works done in this life there are undoubtedly many of you who would pass through those gates ahead of me. But the standard is much higher than that.”

  • MrsCaptJack

    I think it’s hilarious that you refer to the King James’ version as the ‘real’ bible. Puulease!!! Let’s start with the Dead Sea Scrolls, the Gnostic Scriptures and then move on from there in Aramaic, if you please.

    The King James bible is undoubtedly the most used version of the bible, but it is hardly the word of God as originally written by the various saints and prophets who contributed and whose work was actually picked for the King James version. Any book that is translated into two or three different languages and then edited for content can hardly be considered the work of the actual author. It’s inspired by, perhaps, but clearly not the work of the original authors.

    As for the original topic, I would rather dine with my gay neighbours in all their dens of iniquity than sit down with a bunch of fundamental Christians who think they have the only key to God’s front door.

  • Linnea

    Aron,

    Touche’! LOL.

  • http://www.twitter.com/AronL Aron

    Linnea,

    I for one never, EVER mix the fabrics of my clothing. To do so would be to invite a plague upon mine house.

    LOL

  • Linnea

    @William: I’d like to respectfully point out that there are many, many other things prohibited by the Bible that we don’t pay attention to anymore. Go take a look at Lev. 19:27, 15:18, or 19:19, and you’ll see what I mean. As for the Romans passage, go back about half-a-dozen verses and read from there. You’ll find it’s saying something very different than what you think it is!

    As for the “reparative therapy” thing, as someone who majored in psychology, I’m disgusted that a noble profession is being abused and disgraced in this way.

  • Dahl Kaiser

    It is people like this that make me wish there really WAS a Rapture so these people could happily leave the Earth and cleans the planet of hate!

  • krissy

    It really is a business for these people. Hes saying the only ministry for gays is his reparative therapy one. Every time he has an epiphany its an advertisement, he’s a for profit prophet.

  • Sam Molloy

    There are several Charismatic Christian churches within an easy drive of here that understand how sexual orientation works, and welcome LGBT people. Nobody grinding this axe ever mentions Romans 14:14.

  • http://www.twitter.com/AronL Aron

    William,

    While I do not deny the fact that the KJV is one of the great rhetorical masterpieces of the English language, I disagree with the ‘KJV-Only’ stance.

    It is NOT an easy work to interpret, being very verbose and using somewhat archaic language. There is absolutely nothing wrong with the idea of a ‘living’ testament, in that it can be updated to more modern, easier to understand language.

    And in regards to your comment that ‘Every knee will bow to the Lord Jesus Christ,’ I must once again take exception. I’m Jewish, and I’m pretty ok not accepting Jesus of Nazareth as my personal Lord and Savior. I can save myself on my own, thank you.

  • herbert E. Larson

    I just don’t understand these people preach jesus’s love and then do the exact opposite. Never noticing the dual personality thing happening ask them and it’s just not true. I have only one thing to say to this sort sorry no rapture for you.

  • William

    Julia,

    You are absolutely right to mock the “revelation from God” lie that the Charismatics are espousing – they claiming these revelatons so they can add anything they want to God’s word. That’s a definite no, no. However, God’s word addresses the issue of homosexual acts: Leviticus 20:13; Leviticus 18:22; Romans 1:26-27. Be sure to use the real Bible (KJV) if you look these up. The modern perversions are corrupt – long story. We are all sinners even after we are saved, but we are instructed not to live in open rebellion against God. God will not be mocked. Every knee will bow to the Lord Jesus Christ.

  • WMDKitty

    Hey, John, I am bisexual, and I KNOW that not everyone is bi, and I don’t push the “it’s a choice” thing. (Because I didn’t choose to be bisexual, you know?) I have not been “shamed into acting straight”. I am far from “clueless”.

    I am, however, sick and tired of getting sh@t on by people who have no understanding of how sexual orientation works.

    Now STFU.

  • John Criswell

    All religious zealots cloak themselves in indignant self-righteous ignorance. Straight people know they didn’t choose to be straight. In fact in our culture they never have to question it.

    Gay people KNOW it’s not a choice because in our culture they are forced to question it.

    It’s the millions of self-identified and clueless bisexuals that are easy to shame into acting straight by religious intimidation. After all… bisexuals mistakenly believe everyone has the same sexual choices they do.

    Perhaps Scott Lively is bisexual and not just a hateful, greedy religious opportunist.

  • twotif

    Trying to convince someone that homosexuality is a condition or choice that can be changed, is the same as trying to convince someone that they aren’t right or left handed. It’s not only ridiculous, it’s downright ignorant. (Ignorant in it’s true meaning. “Lacking knowledge.” some might call it stupidity)

    The more the xtian “right” harps on the entire issue of homosexuality and gay rights in general, the faster it helps along the inevitable rise and assumption of power for the atheists/secular humanists such as myself.

    So please, all you religious pundits just keep on going the way you’re going. Keep on spewing your hatred of things you don’t undertsand or know anything about. Keep it up folks. Because the truly enlightened are just waiting in the wings. Making more and more headway every single day.

    I LOVE IT!

  • Julia

    Wow, Scott. What an amazing coincidence. I, too, am a mature Christian and I have received a message from God as well. It happened just last night. He told me that He said nothing in the Bible or anywhere else about homosexuality being sinful. He created us all and it really bothers Him that people like you are basically calling His work a mistake. He said you had better repent because you have blood on your hands. He informed me that if you do not heed His words, He is going to beam you down, Scotty.

  • Chuck Mielke

    With Halloween coming up, does anyone know where I can get a Scott Lively mask?

    Seriously, this is just another evidence of religious doublethink where words mean their opposite: in this case, “self-loathing” = “self-acceptance.”

  • Miguel

    “I received a message known in charismatic Christian circles as a prophetic ‘word of knowledge,’ which said in essence that God would soon use me to lead some homosexuals to Him,” Lively wrote.

    —-

    If I were God, I might want to look for a better wingman than Lively.

  • Leonardo Ricardo

    Perfect timing! Thanks to Scott Lively and his evangelicalike associates, the ¨Kill the Gays¨ Bill has been reintroduced to the Parliament of Uganda…no doubt his prior groundwork laying ¨ex-gay¨ theraphy requirements for ¨guilty¨ LGBT people from the verdicts of courts in Uganda will come in handy…one might say a whole new business that ¨God¨ has called him to may have thousands of customers soon!

  • Ian

    Uh, thanks?