Quadrilateral can guide in sexuality debate

In reply to the Oct. 5 letter to the editor in the Reporter:

God created us all and in God’s creation we are all diverse. Our skin, hair and eye color are all diverse, and each color has a range of colors in it. Our size, height, weight and feet are all diverse and have a range of sizes within each category. Our mental ability, intelligence and ability to learn are all diverse. Our personalities also have a range from severely shy to exuberantly extroverted. Within the complete diversity of created human beings, why do we think sexuality should be only one way? Isn’t there a range of diversity in sexuality?

As Methodists we use the Wesleyan quadrilateral for our interpretation and use of Scripture. We hold Scripture in the highest regard but also form our interpretation out of our tradition. We also use reason and experience to discern. My experience has given me encounters with many people whose sexual orientation is different than mine. I have found some of them to be profound Christians who live their life out of their faith. My reason tells me that these people must have been created on one end of the sexuality spectrum. Therefore as a good Wesleyan Methodist the quadrilateral helps me to put aside the few damning Scriptures that do not apply in the way they have been applied. And that is to persecute and judge humans created in God’s image.

The Holy Spirit is at work among us to call us to use our reason, our experience and most of all our love for neighbor to rethink this issue.

Mickey Olson
Licensed Local Pastor, Minnesota Conference

Special Contributor to UMR

Special Contributor

This story was written by a special contributor to The United Methodist Reporter. You may send your article submissions to


  1. Some homosexuality advocates claim that homosexual people are not only born gay, but that God created them that way (with same-sex attractions). However, such a claim is diametrically opposed to the biblical witness; there are scriptural proofs that God is not the source of the same-sex attractions and desires that homosexual people experience. Firstly, the Bible clearly and consistently condemns homosexual behavior as sin (Leviticus 18:22; Leviticus 20:13; Romans 1:26-27; I Corinthians 6:9-10; and I Timothy 1:10). Now, if God himself were to instill same-sex attractions and desires into homosexual people, then, by doing so, He would be tempting them to sin sexually. However, the Bible also states, emphatically, that God does not tempt anyone to sin (James 1:13-14). The necessary conclusion is that the God of the Bible would not create anyone homosexual, because to do so would violate His very nature and character, which is to hate sin. And secondly, after God had created Adam and Eve as heterosexual people, the Bible says that “God saw all that he made, and it was very good” (Genesis 1:31). “All that He had made” could not have included homosexuality, because the Bible clearly and consistently condemns homosexual behavior as evil, not good. And that — the creation of Adam and Eve –- was “the last of the work of creation that God was doing” (Genesis 2:2). It follows, then, that God not only would not, but also did not, create anyone homosexual. Homosexuality must have first appeared at some later time, after God had finished creating.

    Since same-sex attractions and desires do not come from God, where do they come from? The Bible says that sin entered the world through the “original sin” of Adam and Eve (Genesis 3:1-19) after the last of the work of creation that God was doing (Genesis 2:2), and that “each person is tempted when they are dragged away by their own evil desire and enticed” (James 1:14). Thus, same-sex sexual attraction (i.e., homosexuality) is a result of sin entering the world through the disobedience of Adam. Read more at http://rethinkingtheology.com/2012/07/07/are-homo

  2. lindarugg says:

    @jnjaist I think you missed Mickey Olson's point entirely, which is that as Methodists, we are not relying on some fundamentalist reading of Genesis for our guidance. Try reading the letter again, and leave aside hatred of homosexuals.

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