It's hard to know if you should feel happy or annoyed. After coming out in strong support of both homosexuality and gay marriage, Message Bible author Eugene Peterson immediately changed his tune--again.
In an interview just released this week, Peterson said that homosexuality was not an issue of right and wrong and that he would marry a gay couple in his church, reports the Christian Post. "I don't think it's something that you can parade, but it's not a right or wrong thing as far as I'm concerned," he said. In fact, Peterson said the debate on the issue was over in his church and if someone disagreed, they could just find another church.
Now, just days after this strong statement, Peterson is claiming he felt "on the spot" in the interview and is retracting his support for both gay marriage and homosexuality.
"To clarify, I affirm a biblical view of marriage: one man to one woman. I affirm a biblical view of everything," Peterson said in a statement to The Washington Post Thursday. "When put on the spot by this particular interviewer, I said yes in the moment," Peterson appealed.
Further explaining his retraction, Peterson said of his previous support for homosexuality: "That's not something I would do out of respect to the congregation, the larger church body, and the historic biblical Christian view and teaching on marriage. That said, I would still love such a couple as their pastor. They'd be welcome at my table, along with everybody else."
So why the sudden change? Well, one possible reason is that Lifeway Christian Stores, a major Christian book retailer, was going to remove all of his books after his statement. They had already done the same to Christian author Jen Hatmaker who came out in support of gay marriage earlier this year.
And upon his retraction, LifeWay spokesman Carol Pipes said that "based upon Eugene Peterson's retraction, we will continue to sell his resources." Whatever the motivation may be, strong Christian leaders are voicing support for Peterson's retraction.
What do you think of Peterson's about face? What do you think motivated it? Share your thoughts in the Comments! Thank you!