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Tim Keller Says Matthew Vines' Main Points in 'God and the Gay Christian' Are 'Wrong'

Tim Keller Says Matthew Vines' Main Points in 'God and the Gay Christian' Are 'Wrong'

Vines responded by writing on his personal website that he believes Keller "either misunderstands or misrepresents my arguments."

The author wrote in his response that he agrees with Keller that many Christians' opposition to homosexuality is due to bigotry.

Vines also wrote that he has not sought to make the point that biblical authors were not forbidding all same-sex relationships, but only exploitative ones. Instead, "I cite numerous examples of consensual same-sex behavior in ancient literature," he wrote, and added, he has argued that "same-sex relations in the first century … were widely understood to be the product of excessive sexual desire in general."

Vines also said he hasn't written in his book that the Bible supported slavery. "In fact, I argue in chapter 8 that, understood through the lens of a redemptive-movement hermeneutic, the Bible opposes slavery." "I do argue, however, that most Christians throughout church history believed that at least some forms of slavery were morally acceptable."

Vines went on to say that his actual argument for why Leviticus 18:22 and 20:13 should not be understood as binding on Christians today is far more thorough than what Keller suggests. "I couldn't help but wonder whether Keller actually read my entire book."

About the criticism that he concentrated on the biblical negatives, Vines responded by saying he has dedicated three entire chapters to a sustained analysis of "what Keller calls the 'glorious Scriptural vision of sexuality.'"

"In fact, I draw on Keller's own work in The Meaning of Marriage in my discussion of marriage in chapter 8," the author wrote. "Keller shows no engagement with any of those chapters in his review."

Dr. Evan Lenow, assistant professor of Ethics at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, earlier said, "His [Vines'] arguments are not new, and his predecessors failed to win the day within the Christian community. Therefore, I doubt he will have significant impact in the long term."

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