The Abide Project

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As Synod 2022 approaches and churches and classes prepare to send delegates, valuable resources for discussing and considering the Human Sexuality Report (HSR) can be found at The Abide Project

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Note that these valuable resources only really share one viewpoint. If you would like to also look at other viewpoints, you will need to look elsewhere. You can, for example, check out the "Hesed Project" (https://crcsexuality.wordpress.com/) for a kind of "open dialogue"/middle ground sort of conversational space. You can also check out All One Body (https://www.allonebody.org/) for a more "liberal" (for lack of a better word) perspective. FWIW, I recommend checking out all three, plus checking out the Hekman library's collection of documents relating to the HSR (https://libguides.calvin.edu/CRC-SexualityReport). Doing so will make anyone far more well-informed than just checking out the one perspective offered by the Abide Project.

Let me try to understand what's going on here. First, crcsexuality.wordpress.com/ is anonymously created and puts up a petition with signatures called "A Call to Unity" to skirt our normal processes of disagreement. Then they change their name to The Hesed Project as an alternative to The Abide Project. Then it's labeled as "middle ground" but at the same time has embedded videos to All One Body as well as links to overtures against the HSR. With all of the political posturing, by the time synod finally gets here in June there can no longer be any excuse that delegates were not informed. 

    "The Hesed Project"....mmmm

My Logos Bible Software gives the following sense of the Hebrew word hesed.

   Sense: loyal love - an unfailing kind of love, kindness, or goodness; often
used of God’s love that is related to faithfulness to his covenant.

      I find it ironic that a group that focuses on only one of God's attributes, namely his loving-kindness seems to overlook the following:

a. Unfaithfulness to the 'hesed' of YHWH was Israel's perennial problem. They continuously strayed away from the fact that the 'hesed' of YHWH required whole-hearted obedience to the laws of YHWH. Thus Israel is termed 'adulterous'/ 'a prostitute'/ and engaging in whoredom.  And guess what? Most of this spiritual adultery had to do with adopting the sexual ethics of the pagan nations around them, and forsaking the sexual ethics expressed in the holiness code of YHWH.

b. One cannot cherry pick the attributes of God as to which one will be most amenable to their tastes. Sure, it is nice to think that YHWH is patient, good, loving, kind and so forth, but one must also see that His attributes also consist of holiness, wrath, judgement and a jealousy that his people will worship Him the way He wants it.

c. To make a 'project' out of hesed is simply not the role of humans. It is a contradiction in terms.

 

I see that there is certainly a battle for the hearts of the CRCNA.

Dr. John Span

 

 

For pastors and church leaders interested in studying and working through the pastoral care implications post-Synod, The Foundry (a training ministry in GR) is running four Pastors Learning Cohorts entitled, "Clarity and Care." These will center around how to hold to a traditional/historic view on sexuality and marriage AND lovingly, thoughtfully, and charitably embrace our LGBTQIA+ brothers and sisters in Christ. We guarantee no easy answers. But we want to serve the church and church leaders by making space for these massively important discussions and decisions.

You can check out the description at https://network.crcna.org/leadership-development/pastoral-care-lgbt-peop...