I have previously blogged on my takes for the Amy DeLong Trial. I did not expect that an unpopular pastor from the east would get a comment from a member of DeLong’s trial team. The following is the unedited comment from Wesley White:
Blessings from a member of Rev. Amy's Trial Team. We know there are many who are upset about the decision of the trial court to respond in what they understood to be an attempt to move the church from threatened division through a restorative justice form of consequence. Your sisters and brothers in Christ who were put in a most difficult place and had to wrestle with two different part of the Book of Discipline and what it means to uphold a document that changes every four years (and in non-USA locations does not need to be followed and isn't everywhere).
One part of the Discipline speaks of providing ministry with all people, it says, "Do Ministry, no matter what!" Another part of the Discipline speaks of consequences, "Don't do that, no matter what!" The letter of the law regarding trial procedures was strictly followed.
Was the Discipline upheld? I believe it was upheld in its processes even if there are people on both side who look on without having seen and heard the evidence and claim the penalty was too strong or too weak to match the letter of the law they most associate with - "Do" or "Don't".
Thank you for continuing to wrestle with the difficult discernment of whether to cut a baby in two, to do more than weep with Rachel as her children who were denied/killed, or the reminder that Mercy is desired, not Sacrifice. I wish you well in ministering in your context as Rev. Amy ministered in hers.
With this letter, I realized that not only on sexuality issues do we differ but also on at least four more areas.

Differing View on Unity
It is narrated in the comment that the trial court attempted to heal for unity “through a restorative justice form of consequence.” Is unity attained in this way? Jesus, in His High-Priestly prayer, disclosed the key element of unity. John 17:23 says, “I in them and you in me, that they may become perfectly one…” Perfect biblical unity only comes through our union with Christ by faith and repentance. It, therefore, requires observance of biblical truth because Christ is Truth personified. As long as a party remains more committed to political agenda or to extra-biblical “expansive love of GOD” than to the revealed truth of the Bible, unity is unattainable.

Differing View on the Book of Discipline
It seems that the “most difficult place” for an adherent of this liberation movement is to wrestle with two seemingly opposing different parts of the Book of Discipline, when he is supposed to choose between "Do Ministry, no matter what!" and "Don't do that, no matter what!" I just can’t understand why portions of the BOD are forced to crash while these are supposed to be parallel. Some may argue that statements 2 and 4 imply that the least common multiple is 4. While on the other hand, some may say that statements 3 and 6 are suggesting for 6. But actually, statements 2, 3, 4, and 6 agree that 12 is the answer. When the BOD says “Don’t!” it is because not doing is the best way to “Do!”

Differing View on Ministry
There are at least two views on ministry: (1) Need-based, man-centered, culturally-defined ministry; and, (2) Redemption-based, GOD-centered, Scripture-defined ministry. Wesley White wrote, “I wish you well in ministering in your context as Rev. Amy ministered in hers.” With this concluding comment, the trial team member reveals his adherence to the first view. Through an article in Christianity Today titled “Toxic Pluralism,” United Methodist James V.Heidinger II already exhorted us in 1993 to flee from these types of ministries;
Evangelical pastors and theologians can learn from the mainline experience of placing relevance above truth. We must avoid the lure of novelty and soft sell, which, we are told, will make it easier for moderns to believe. Methods may change, but never the message… We are called to be faithful stewards of a great and reliable theological heritage. We have truths to affirm and errors to avoid. We must not try to make these truths more appealing or user friendly by watering them down. We must guard against a trendy "theological bungee-jumping" that merely entertains the watching crowd.
In the end, GOD will not evaluate us on whether our ministry is traditional or contextualized. But He will surely inquire whether our service is Scriptural or unbiblical.

Differing View on Mercy
White calls it mercy to unite in marriage lesbian couples, to let an elder clergy be engaged in a homosexual relationship for 16 years, to call these valid expressions of love, and to see these as acceptable in the eyes of (a) god. He calls this mercy. I never thought that a doctor who refrained from disclosing about his patient’s cancer could ever be merciful. Mercy is telling everybody to flee from the wrath to come not denying the existence of that wrath. Mercy will re-echo 1 Cor. 6:9-10, “Do not be deceived; neither homosexuals will inherit the kingdom of God.”

We are on the contrasting sides not just because we have opposing views on sexuality. We are on the contrasting sides because we have opposing views on GOD, Christ, the church, ministries, the Word, love, justice, John Wesley, nature, math, and a lot more.

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