Conservative Christian opinion shifting

imgresBiblical scholars have for some time noted that the good book doesn’t itself equate homosexuality with sin. Subsequent proselytizers have done that work.

Now it seems that even within stalwart anti-LGBT Christian groups, opinion seems to be shifting. As Huff Post reports today,

“Bad news for the Westboro Baptist Church and other right-wing groups: the percentage of Americans who sincerely believe that homosexuality is a sin has decreased significantly, a new poll has found.

“The Nashville-based LifeWay Research organization revealed that just 37 percent of Americans surveyed in November said they believed homosexual behavior was a sin, a seven point drop from the previous year’s survey. Interestingly, respondents who did not believe homosexuality was a sin increased by a mere two percent, while a greater number of those surveyed said they were now unsure of what they believe.

Ed Stetzer, president of LifeWay Research, said that President Barack Obama’s embrace of same-sex marriage last year “probably impacted the evolution of cultural values -– there is a real and substantive shift, surprisingly large for a one-year timeframe.”

“Pointing also to Pastor Louie Giglio’s withdrawal from Obama’s forthcoming inauguration ceremony, Stetzer added, ‘The culture is clearly shifting on homosexuality and this creates a whole new issue: How will America deal with a minority view, strongly held by Evangelicals, Catholics, Mormons, Muslims, and so many others?’

“According to Anthea Butler, associate professor of religious studies at the University of Pennsylvania, a surge in the popularity of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) celebrities and media figures like Ellen DeGeneres has also contributed to the movement. ‘Who wouldn’t want to take their grandmother to see her show?’” Butler told USA Today.”

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