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I am not a sinner

JEFF Adams challenges Christians who do not believe being gay to be a sin to speak up. Well, that’s me for one.

You see Mr Adams, some Christians believe that they have the ultimate truth and enjoy trying to force their opinions on everybody else, while other Christians believe that people’s faith is their own business. Guess which group makes a big noise about their views on homosexuality and which prefer to work quietly in the background to make sure that everybody gets equal treatment?

If you are going to use the Bible to support your views, you should be able to quote chapter and verse. For example, compare Leviticus chapter 24 verse 20: “Breach for breach, eye for eye, tooth for tooth: as he hath caused a blemish in a man, so shall it be done to him again.” To Matthew chapter 5 verses 38 and 39: “Ye have heard that it hath been said, An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth: But I say unto you, That ye resist not evil: but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also.”

So if as Mr Adams claims adding to scripture invokes an immediate curse, then Jesus is in deep trouble.

The Bible was written to help people to lead better lives, but it is aimed mostly at the people and circumstances of a particular time. It nevertheless contains much wisdom applicable to our times, but is often contradictory both to itself and our modern concept of morals.

If you read it with Jesus in your heart, it may be a guide to the truth, but cannot be the whole truth on its own.

Many people who call themselves atheist or agnostic lead a life of self sacrifice and service to the community; others claim Christianity but preach hate and division.

I know which I consider to be the true Christians.

HOWARD MARCH Tudor Crescent Swindon

Support equality

IN his letter opposing gay marriage Jeff Adams says I’m clearly not interested in the “Biblical explanation” of what he says is “unnatural”. He’s got me. I admit it. I am only slightly interested in that “explanation”. It has long been used to excuse the most revolting oppression of gay people, and let’s face it many others too.

I’m glad many Christians oppose such oppression and some of these are today interpreting their scripture in a progressive way. I am surprised that while I, who hold no religious views, am aware of these debates, Mr Adams is blissfully, or should we say rapturously, unaware of them. A few moments on Google will fill this gap for him.

He says I am twisting his words by saying he disapproves of gay people, but this is in a letter which demonstrates his disapproval of gay people.

I wonder how far back he will go into ancient history for his social views. He calls on Plato (427 to 347 BCE), who also called for the death penalty for denying divine creation, for support. Then he’s back into the Old Testament which he interprets as saying that all non pro-creative sex is unnatural.

Everyone should be able to grow and live comfortable in their own skins, that’s why we should support equality including the right to marry for those who want it.

PETER SMITH Woodside Avenue Swindon

Where are the clergy?

WHY is it when a debate hits the Letters column of the Adver regarding gay “marriage” or homosexuality, or any other Biblical issue for that matter, Swindon’s clergy lie low, heads well below the parapet?

Over the past decades I have only noticed one local member of the clergy write to the paper, and that was to do with foxes! Yes, foxes. Nothing ever about his human flock.

Granted not all of the local clergy take the Adver, but some must.

Where, for example, is the Bishop of Swindon in these debates? As the local Bishop surely he should be taking an interest in the spiritual health of Swindonians and correct scriptural misunderstandings in the Adver if need be?

Seems not!

We would all like the quiet life but Jesus warns us about being spiritually lukewarm.

Christians are meant to be spiritual warriors, especially local clergy “leaders”, not heads buried in the spiritual sand while others take the slings and arrows of the opposition. In short - the footsoldiers doing their work for them.


JEFF ADAMS Bloomsbury Swindon

We should be horrified

ON Radio 4’s Tweet of the Day it stated that linnets used to be blinded to get them to sing more sweetly. We as a nation are naturally horrified to hear of this.

But as a nation we are not always horrified to hear of birds being killed for sport.

Perhaps if pubic opinion changes, a further Tweet of the Day will horrify a further generation with our indifference.

REV HW JONES Wroughton Swindon

Directory disgust

THE layout and quality of British Telecom’s directories were, once upon a time, a model for others to imitate but the latest 2017/2018 mini-monstrosity shows the now under pressure company at its penny pinching worst. The type is so small and close together that even with a magnifying glass it is difficult to search. If, as I suspect, the bulk of BT’s residential land line customers are the elderly and housebound, one might be forgiven for suggesting that this unreadable document is in breach of the requirements of The Chronically Sick and Disabled Persons’ Act. Certainly if print of this size was to be used in Government forms, or notices in shops, doctors’ surgeries or hospitals, there would be deluge of complaints. To add insult to injury, the back of the new directory carries a full page advertisement for Age UK, most of which, though not the limitations of course, is in very nice large readable print! Maybe BT should consider supplying each visually impaired person or those of us over 80, with a full page, plastic magnifying sheet!


Lowest of the low

THE person who stole my purse in a charity shop in Havelock Street on Thursday, March 2 at around 11.15am could not have stooped any lower.

To me and all the other people you steal from, you are scum. You just seem to pick on elderly people.

But what goes around comes around. You will not prosper from what you do.

I am writing this letter to warn people that you are targeting them.


Good Arts coverage

SOME years ago I wrote to you congratulating your Sports Team on their coverage of the whole range of sporting activities in this area.

Then I complained that the coverage of The Arts did not match the space given to sport.

This is not the case now. Nearly everything gets a mention before it happens.

Thank you on behalf of all those who organise and take part in both the professional and particularly the amateur productions throughout the year.

My only complaint now is that you feature reviews from Bath, Bristol and Oxford but rarely from Swindon.

It took a letter in today’s Adver to praise the recent Blood Brothers at the Wyvern.

Does this suggest to you that more readers should be encouraged to send in their reports on shows they have enjoyed? Would you just fit them in the letters columns or create a new Community Arts Reports?

Perhaps this letter will encourage more people to write in.

JOHN DAVIES Byron Avenue Royal Wootton Bassett

A historic plan

THE proposals featured in today’s Advertiser regarding the Railway Village and the development of the Mechanics Institute make interesting reading.

The Railway Village is what the history of this town is all about and has been neglected for far too long.

The organisation behind this plan should be congratulated, and the people at the council should take a leaf out of their book.