This is not just the beginning of a study for our church.
This is a journey to the very heart of who we believe God to be.
Queer folk have consistently been read, translated and interpreted out of the Bible since the beginning. This was not the message of Jesus. The message of Jesus is one of radical love for all people. Such a message is queer or not normative. How do we open the scriptures to speak as such?
We open our hearts and minds to hope beyond our traditional boundaries of fear.
This book, The Queer, is an attempt to open the Gospel of John to a modern queer audience. It is a path to discover Jesus anew. Though it will not be out in print version for a few weeks, I wanted us to go ahead and begin this journey down the path of incarnation with the first chapter of this interpretation of the Gospel of John.
The Queer is Jesus.
“In the beginning was the Queer, and the Queer was with God, and the Queer was God.” John 1
God is not normative! God’s love extends far beyond the boundaries of what we would consider normative. When we think about God as a queer construct, we begin to realize that the uniqueness of every living being is a result of their having been created in the very image of God. God is queer and so is everyone made in God’s image. Jesus was and is the complete earthly embodiment of queerness. When Jesus is described as the Queer, I am describing an entity that has fully recognized the queer within in order to become the queer that the world needs or the God within to become the God that the world needs.
The Queer is God.
“Light shines in darkness…”
Your queerness or difference is your light. Discovering who you have been made to be in the image of God lights the way for others to discover who they have been made to be in the image of God. Be the reflection of light that you have been called to be. God loves you. Be who you are. Share that love. Share that light.
The Queer is light.
“God sent a man to Texas named John…”
John was the forbearer of the light. Sometimes in our lives there are forbearers who cannot go all the way with us, perhaps they can only give us directions. We need to listen to those who offer directions so that we might reach that destination of light that we have longed for and become the queer that God has created us to be.
The Queer is destination.
“The Queer became flesh and dwelt here among us in Texas.”
This is a God that continues consistently to become a human being. This is the nature of the incarnation of the Queer. When you hurt God hurts. When you are pain God is in pain. When you are oppressed God is oppressed. This is the God who is right here with you in Texas. You are queer and God is queer.
The Queer is here.
“The Queer was rejected by family and those who claim to know God the best.”
We just spent an entire evening hearing numerous stories of rejection, when we released our book, Stories from The Church at Mable Peabody’s. The Queer knows what it means to be rejected by family and loved ones. This is the God who came out and was kicked out. The Queer knows what it means to be rejected by religious establishments. This is the God that was killed by them. In the same way that you were and are oppressed by your families and religious folk, so too was the Queer.
The Queer is a survivor.
“The leaders of the Church of the Bible sent numerous elders and deacons from Denton to ask John, ‘Who the hell are you? What the hell are you? What is your identification?’”
When are we going to have the courage to live beyond the boundaries of labels and identifications? We live in a society that is constantly asking for such things? What are you? How do you identify? The problem with such thinking is that we become slaves to labels and identities that do not allow us to be individuals. You are a queer child of God, be who God has created you to be. You do not have to fit. You just have to be.
The Queer is queer.
The Queer is here.