LifeWay Removes Jen Hatmaker’s Books from the Shelf Over LGBT Stance

LifeWay Christian Resources has decided to pull Jen Hatmaker's books from the shelf after she expressed her approval for LGBT lifestyle and gay marriage.
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LifeWay Christian Resources has decided to pull Jen Hatmaker's books from the shelf after she expressed her approval for LGBT lifestyle and gay marriage.

Marty King, spokesman for LifeWay, said the company could no longer sell Hatmaker's books because her "theology of human sexuality" goes against the doctrines the company stands for.

"In a recent interview, [Hatmaker] voiced significant changes in her theology of human sexuality and the meaning and definition of marriage -- changes which contradict LifeWay's doctrinal guidelines," King told Baptist Press. "As a result, LifeWay has discontinued selling her resources."

Hatmaker is the author of several resources, including the bestselling book, "7: An Experimental Mutiny Against Excess." She is also a famous blogger and has appeared in a reality TV show with her family. She is married to a prominent pastor based in Austin, Texas.

In a recent interview with Religion News Service, Hatmaker expressed her approval over gay marriage and LGBT couples.

"From a civil rights and civil liberties side and from just a human being side, any two adults have the right to choose who they want to love," Hatmaker told Religion News Service. "And they should be afforded the same legal protections as any of us."

She also said gay couples need marriage and parenting guidance, which the church could give them.  

"From a spiritual perspective, since gay marriage is legal in all 50 states, our communities have plenty of gay couples who, just like the rest of us, need marriage support and parenting help and Christian community," Hatmaker said. "They are either going to find those resources in the church or they are not."

She added that gay couples are our "neighbors and friends" and our "brothers and sisters in Christ" who belong to the same family as Christians.

"They are adopted into the same family as the rest of us, and the church hasn't treated the LGBT community like family. We have to do better," she said.

Hatmaker also said she would glady attend a friend's gay wedding. And if one of her children should turn out gay, she would parent that child the same way as her other children.

"We want for all of our kids the same thing: faithful, committed marriage and a beautiful family that is committed to God and the church,"

When asked if she believes an LGBT relationship can be holy, Hatmaker said yes. However, she clarified her views about this particular issue are "tender."

"This is a very nuanced conversation, and it's hard to nail down in one sitting," she said. "I've seen too much pain and rejection at the intersection of the gay community and the church. Every believer that witnesses that much overwhelming sorrow should be tender enough to do some hard work here."

The controversy regarding Hatmaker's approval over LGBT beliefs began in August when she posted on her Facebook page that "it is high time Christians opened wide their arms, wide their churches, wide their tables, wide their homes to the LGBT community. So great has our condemnation and exclusion been, that gay Christian teens are SEVEN TIMES more likely to commit suicide."

She voiced her love for the LGBT community, telling them there was nothing wrong with them and Jesus loves everyone "beyond all reason and lives to make us all new, restored, whole." However, she did not say at the time whether or not she approved of gay relationships and gay marriage.

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