When asked about same-sex marriage, popular evangelical author goes in a different direction.
The Message Bible, The Pastor, and the rest of Eugene Peterson’s catalog may no longer be sold at LifeWay Christian Stores, the country’s largest Christian retail chain, due to the retired pastor’s revisited views on same-sex marriage.
In an interview published Wednesday, Peterson told Religion News Service columnist Jonathan Merritt that the “debate about lesbians and gays might be over” and that he would perform a same-sex wedding ceremony if he were pastoring today.
Christians on each side of the debate lamented and celebrated Peterson as one of the most high-profile evangelicals to publicly change his stance, and LifeWay stated that if he indeed supports same-sex marriage, its stores can no longer sell his books.
“LifeWay only carries resources in our stores by authors who hold to the biblical view of marriage,” a spokesperson for LifeWay, a Southern Baptist affiliate, said in a statement to CT.
“We are attempting to confirm with Eugene Peterson or his representatives that his recent interview on same-sex marriage accurately reflects his views. If he confirms he does not hold to a biblical view of marriage, LifeWay will no longer sell any resources by him, including The Message.”
The LifeWay website currently lists 135 titles by Peterson, including dozens of versions of his Message Bible, his memoir The Pastor, and his popular book on discipleship and the Psalms, A Long Obedience in the Same Direction.
The 84-year-old served for decades in the Presbyterian Church (USA), which now permits same-sex marriage and openly gay clergy. But Peterson has been widely read, celebrated, and respected among generations of evangelicals, including pastors.
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