God Loves His LGBTQ Children

A long time friend recently emailed me regarding my book, my web-sight, and my thoughts regarding several subjects including that of LGBTQ individuals and gay marriage. Although I was somewhat aware of his (what I will respectfully refer to as) highly-conservative beliefs, we previously never discussed or faith.

There were several other claims or references to my so called blasphemous thoughts and claims. For instance, his questioning if my offering Reiki services is my claiming that I have the same healing power as Jesus and is documented in the Bible. Obviously, I no where make or even allude to such a claim.

A focus on his part became apparent: homosexuality in totality, and then on same-sex marriage. In several emails, he sighted Bible verses in an attempt to convince me that it was not approved by God and is a sinful act. It became obvious that he would remain rooted in his narrow vision of God and the Truth that the Bible offers.

There is good to come from the exchange:
he inspired me to do a bit of research and inspired me to share this post for all to consider.

What the Bible says about homosexuality, same-sex attraction, and being Transgender?


The overall theme
of the Christian Bible is that God loves everyone and has forgiven everyone through Jesus—this includes LGBTQ community. “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16) “The world” means everyone, including LGBTQ people, but demonstrates God’s love and acceptance for all of His children.

Nothing can separate us from the love of God. (Rom 8:38) This message is for all people, including LGBTQ individuals.

God did not make a mistake in creating LGBTQ people. “For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.” (Psalm 139:113-14) Sexual identity and gender identity are components of a person’s “being”, and as such are part of who God made each of us to be (“you created my inmost being”).

On Inclusion

God welcomes people of all genders and sexual identities. “There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” (Galatians 3:28) Also “…God has shown me that I should not call anyone impure or unclean.” (Acts 10:28) Jesus gladly socialized with people that the religious establishment disapproved of. (Matt 9:11)

The Church needs its LGBTQ members. “The human body has many parts, but the many parts make up one whole body. So it is with the body of Christ. Some of us are Jews, some are Gentiles, some are slaves, and some are free. But we have all been baptized into one body by one Spirit, and we all share the same Spirit.” (1 Corinthians 12:12-13)

The early church welcomed non-gender-conforming people. One of the first recorded baptisms by the apostles was of an Ethiopian eunuch. (Acts 8:27)

On Relationships

Love is a gift from God: “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.” (Galatians 5:22-23)

God made us to be in relationship with Him and with each other: “it is bad for man to be alone” (Genesis 2:18) It would be inconsistent with God’s loving nature to create people who were gay and then condemn them to a life of loneliness. Heterosexual marriage is presented as an example (rather than a definition) of how God puts people in relationships; in Genesis 2:24: “That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh.” The clause “that is why” points back to 2:18.

God creates community and families, uniting people together: “So they are no longer two, but one. Therefore what God has joined together, let man not separate.” (Matthew 19:5). God can and does create unions with all types of people, including LGBTQ individuals.

Examples of love between people of the same gender in the Bible:

David and Jonathan. “After David had finished talking with Saul, Jonathan became one in spirit with David, and he loved him as himself.” (1 Samuel 18:1) David says of Jonathan: “Your love for me was wonderful, more wonderful than that of women.” (2 Samuel 1:26).

The Centurion and his servant (Matt 8:5-10). The word used for “servant” here, was commonly used to describe a servant who was a romantic partner of the master.

On Gender

All people, including LGBTQ individuals, were created in God’s image: “So God created humankind in his image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.” (Genesis 1:27, NSRV) The use of the two primary genders in this passage is likely a “merism”, a figure of speech by which a single thing (in this case, humanity) is referred to by a phrase that lists several of its parts, but does not list all components. (Similarly, in Genesis 1:1, the universe is referred to as “the heavens and the earth”.) This also indicates that God is not limited to a single gender.

There are several characters in the Bible who were non-gender-conforming, meaning that they did not behave according to traditional gender roles, or that they were not physically typical of men or women.

Jacob preferred to be with his mother at home, enjoyed cooking and was smooth-skinned, in contrast to his brother, who was hairy and preferred to hunt and be outdoors. (Genesis 25)

Joseph, Jacob’s son, was given an “ornate robe” by his father (Genesis 37:3); the Hebrew word used here for the robe (ketonet passim) is used elsewhere to mean “the kind of garment the virgin daughters of the king wore” (2 Samuel 13:18).

Deborah (Judges 4-5) was a judge of Israel, acting as a prophet and military leader at a time when women were treated like property and valued by the number of children they could bear.

Hegai, the eunuch in charge of the palace women in the story of Esther, helped Esther to become queen. Ebed-Melech also was a eunuch, who saved the life of the prophet Jeremiah (Jeremiah 38).

The man carrying a water jar, whom Jesus indicated would take the disciples to the room for his last supper, was doing work that was normally done by women, and yet was given this part to play in Jesus’ ministry.

The Bible contains feminine images of God, in addition to the masculine metaphors of “Father” and “King”.

God’s wisdom in Proverbs is personified as female (Proverbs 1:20, 8:1, 9:1), and Christ is the wisdom of God (1 Corinthians 1:24).

Many references to God describe actions associated with women: nurturing life in the womb (Psalm 139:13), giving birth (John 3:5-6), and protecting children (Matthew 23:37).

Bible verses that have been used to condemn LGBTQ people

When seeking to understand any Bible verse, it is important to know the context of the verse, as well as how the verse has been translated from the original language. The following are points to consider when thinking about the verses that have been used to justify prohibitions on same-sex marriage and full participation in church community for LGBTQ people. Nowhere in the Bible, taken in its original language and context, is there a prohibition against loving, consensual same-sex relationships, nor against people living as their authentic genders.

Genesis 19:1-13 The Sodom & Gomorrah story is preceded by examples of Abraham and Lot being very welcoming to strangers. The lack of hospitality and the desire to do violence to the visitors were considered grave transgressions, regardless of the gender of the visitors. The reference in Jude 1:7 to “strange flesh” likely refers to the fact that the angels they wanted to assault were not human. “Now this was the sin of your sister Sodom: She and her daughters were arrogant, overfed and unconcerned; they did not help the poor and needy.” (Ezekiel 16:49)

Leviticus 18:22 The NIV translation of this verse reads: “Do not have sexual relations with a man as one does with a woman; that is detestable.” The literal translation of the original Hebrew, however, is “And with male you shall not lie lyings woman.” The word translated as “lyings” is found elsewhere only in Genesis 49:4, where it refers to incest. In Leviticus, this verse comes in a list of prohibitions against having sex with family members, so it is reasonable to conclude that it is a prohibition against incest.

Romans 1:26-27 Here, Paul is condemning the sinful and harmful acts he perceives in Roman culture at the time. Since same-gender and non-heterosexual attractions are natural, this condemnation is not directed at LGBTQ people. In Romans 2:1, Paul condemns those who misuse God’s teachings to judge others.

1 Corinthians 6:9 and 1 Timothy 1:9-11 The NIV translations of these verses read, respectively: “Or do you not know that wrongdoers will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor men who have sex with men . . .“ and “We also know that the law is made not for the righteous but for lawbreakers and rebels, the ungodly and sinful, the unholy and irreligious, for those who kill their fathers or mothers, for murderers, for the sexually immoral, for those practicing homosexuality, . . .”

The word translated as “homosexuals” and “men who have sex with men” is the Greek word arsenokoitai, which more accurately translates to “men who sleep with male prostitutes”. The word “homosexual” is not found in the Bible in translations written prior to 1948, implying that it was likely added as a result of the translators’ own prejudices.

Matthew 19:4 “Haven’t you read,” [Jesus] replied, “that at the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female’?” In the same section, in verse 12, Jesus says, “For there are eunuchs who were born that way, and there are eunuchs who have been made eunuchs by others—and there are those who choose to live like eunuchs for the sake of the kingdom of heaven.” It is evident that Jesus was aware that gender variance existed, and he does not condemn it.

Deuteronomy 22:5 “A woman must not wear men’s clothing, nor a man wear women’s clothing, for the Lord your God detests anyone who does this.” The word translated as “clothing” here, keli, is translated elsewhere as “armor”, and the word translated as “man”, geber, actually means “warrior”. This implies a prohibition against intent to deceive by pretending to be a warrior, or for a warrior to deceive by disguising himself as a woman.

Criteria by which God will evaluate our lives

For those who might feel it is “better to be safe than sorry” in sticking with the “traditional” teaching on LGBTQ issues, consider that the Bible does not tell us to judge or make life difficult for other people. There are seven passages that have been used to justify bias against LGBTQ people, but there are over a hundred about love — so it may be safest to focus on love! Scripture has been used to justify slavery, to exclude divorced people from full participation in the sacraments, to exclude women from ministry, and to persecute left-handed people; if the church has been wrong in its treatment of LGBTQ issues, this would not be unprecedented.

Jesus says nothing indicating that being gay or trans is a sin.

John 8:7 “Let he who is without sin cast the first stone.” Throughout the Bible, God warns against casting judgments upon others.

Matthew 25: 34-36 “Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’”

Mark 12:30-31 “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself. There is no commandment greater than these.”

Matthew 18:6 “If anyone causes one of these little ones–those who believe in me–to stumble, it would be better for them to have a large millstone hung around their neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea.” Consider this in the context of LGBTQ people who lost their faith because their church told them God did not love them.

John 6:39 “And this is the will of him who sent me, that I shall lose none of all those he has given me. . .” God would not want LGBTQ people to be driven away from the church or lose their faith.

With much appreciation and credit to: http://www.sthugh.net/lgbtq-affirming-scripture

My Personal Conclusion

It is apparent to me that the Bible supports what my heart and soul equally knew: that God loves, supports and welcomes all of us. God doesn’t judge or discriminate based on gender identity or sexual orientation. God’s love is whole and inclusive. Those who don’t embrace all, love all, include all, and support all are blinded by their personal prejudices and fears. I pray that those who have strayed from the path of love and truth due to their blinding fears will some day, in some way, find their way once again to be able to “walk in the light of God.”

email: tonyrzonca@ptd.net
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Learning How to Pray — With Power

Prayer is a powerful method of bettering one’s life and connecting with the Divine. Through prayer you are empowering the Heavens to bring your desires and needs to fruition. Simply through the act of prayer, you provide tranquility and harmony to your day. Over time, you will develop a personal relationship with those to whom you pray. The mindful thought of prayer has similar effects as meditations. Your thoughts are centered and focused on a singular subject or area. You are mindful and removed from distractions, living in the moment with a singular focus.

Don’t pray for lighter burdens, but for stronger backs.
— Gautama Buddha

Talk to God as you would talk to a friend, for that is what He wishes to be. Pray at any moment of the day or night. While you are taking your morning shower, walking the dog, or washing the dishes are all perfect opportunities for prayer. Don’t limit your prayer times to iconic times of the day such as when you awake or before sleep. When possible, pray out loud. Your voice has power. Let the Heavens hear your voice.
Being unhappy in your present job, being mistreated or simply feeling unfulfilled, are just subject for prayer. If you desire a new car, pray for a new car. God wants you to be happy and have nice things. As long as these things are not directed by the ego as a replacement for God. Your prayers must be ego free and bring no harm to others.

Praying for peace in your life, while continuing to harbor anger in your heart and mind is pointless. Praying for the strength and wisdom to release your heart and mind to overcome anger would be much more effective. Exploring the subject through prayer to find the route of the anger would be equally beneficial.
If for example, you are praying for a new job, don’t simply pray to God for a better job. First, pray for the fortitude and endurance to continue in your present position. Not being overwhelmed by negativity of your present job will ensure you won’t miss any new prospects or avenues as they present themselves. Pray for the insight not to miss the window of opportunity, and for the drive to explore every opportunity as they are presented to you. There is a distinct difference and end result between asking God to do this for you, and for God to empower you with the tools to achieve it for yourself. After all, God helps those who help themselves.

Praying in the Correct Tense


Whatever you are praying for, do so as if it has already been provided to you. From a heavenly perspective, our prayers can easily be confused regarding exactly what we are asking for. For example, if your prayer begins with, “Please can you help me in my quest to find a better job.” From a heavenly perspective, instead of asking for assistance in finding a better job, it could be easily misinterpreted that you are asking for challenges in the pursuit of a new job and therefore that is what you will receive; challenges and obstacles to overcome. In contrast if you begin your prayer with, “Thank you for your assistance in my quest to find a better job,” the results you desire of a new found opportunity will be provided at the appropriate time.
When praying, your words and thoughts are conveyed through energy from you to the heavenly recipients. It’s not always the literal words we are saying but the overall message being communicated. That is why it is essential to pray in the tense that the requested is already going to be done for you. When starting with thank you, it accomplishes two crucial things at once. The form of the request is properly stated as “already being so,” and the necessary gratitude is simultaneously being offered.

A Shortened Excerpt form:
The Journey of Truth:
Chronicles of a Peaceful Warrior
by Tony R. Zonca

http://www.tonyrzonca.com
tonyrzonca@ptd.net
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Calling All Peaceful Warriors…

If your world, our world seems turned upside down; if the life you knew, we all knew feels like a distant memory, then have faith and rest assured—there is a reason and a point to it all. Times of great change first create great upheaval. Life on this planet is undergoing a spiritual course direction. A kinder, fully inclusive, loving path for all of our brothers and sisters is to come. This is the Divine’s desire, Jesus’ desire, and my desire. I am calling out for millions of peaceful warriors to join me in my quest. The next age of a New Age has begun, and there is a Spiritual Renaissance to come!

Tony R. offers SOUL-utions to lovingly support you in your journey. The goal, the mission is to empower all on their pathway to enlightenment, to living in the light of God, and becoming a peaceful warrior. He is here for you, to extend a helping hand, to empower all to find the peace, joy and love that God wishes for you. Join me, join Him, and discover your higher purpose, your Divine purpose. Together we can make the world a better place.

Love, Light & Peace always,
Tony R. Zonca

http://www.tonyrzonca.com
tonyrzonca@ptd.net
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