(Pic: Pastor David Berzins, wearer of mixed fabrics and hater of gays)
Apparently, when Jesus stated that "Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself," he actually meant that you should stone people to death if you don't agree with their lifestyle. Or so said Pastor Steven Anderson last year, who told his congregation that killing gays was the only way to stop aids.
Fast forward to 2015, and a Christian pastor in Prescott Valley, Arizona has angrily condemned his friend and fellow pastor for not denouncing Pastor Anderson's world view. From Alternet:
The pastor in question asked to have his congregation’s listing removed from Anderson’s church directory, a decision which Pastor David Berzins of Word of Truth Baptist Church condemned as the act of a traitor to his faith, even though the offending clergyman is a personal friend of his.
“I like the guy,” said Berzins. “He’s a Christian, he’s saved, he does soul-winning, he believes in a King James Bible, it’s a Baptist church. Independent Fundamental Baptist church.”
The offending pastor even believes “that homosexuality is a wickedness and preaches against it,” Berzins went on, but his faith in Berzins’ eyes, is suspect.
“But just because they don’t believe that [homosexuals] should be stoned,” he said, that church’s teachings are invalid.
A student of sociology and the art of government, Berzins maintains that the bible, largely a collection of the musings of Bronze Age goat herders, is in fact the perfect template for running modern day America:
“Look, God came up with the laws of the Old Testament! They’re breathed by the Lord,” he said. “And if you think that you know better on how to run a country than God has ordained,” he went on, you’re against the teachings of the Bible.
It should be remembered that Leviticus (the section of the bible that advocates stoning homosexuality) also forbids: mixing fabrics in clothing (19:19), trimming your beard (19:27), eating fruit from a tree within four years of planting it (19:23), or failing to include salt in offerings to God (2:13).
Anderson and Berzins seem to be very hung up on Leviticus 18:22 (the bit about gays) and have successfully conditioned themselves to ignore the other directives. Both are clearly shaved and wear rather cheap suits (no doubt made mostly of polyester) so it's rather hard to understand why they focus on what consenting adults do with each other sexually. Not to suggest that what they hate in others they actually hate in themselves...
Jesus once said "Whoever claims to love God yet hates a brother or sister is a liar. For whoever does not love their brother and sister, whom they have seen, cannot love God, whom they have not seen."
Nice and all, but back to the hating gays!