Every now and again, someone does something that inspires me. Raiders’ defensive lineman, Carl Nassib is one of those people.
He came out recently as the first openly gay NFL player. Nassib even admitted he feared it ‘could ruin his career.’
However, Nassib still took a giant leap of faith and did it anyways and it has all worked out for him. Nassib has continued playing on the defensive line for Las Vegas in all three games this season.
Thank you Carl Nassib for your courage and bravery, as an evaluator, a fan of the game and as a Christian, I applaud you.
That’s right, as a Christian and as a preacher and as an evangelist too – – I applaud you.
Part of the reason my wife and I moved to Key West, Florida was because we feel at home in the environment and we were drawn to the vibe of unconditional acceptance that exists here. Every pastor in America should spend a week in Key West. Actually, seminary should be taught here. We feel more acceptance here than any church building we have ever been to in our lives. Ironically, Key West is an extremely openly gay-town.
I am sorry Carl that the Church has caused you or anyone else who is gay in America any fear whatsoever in the first place, and I am sorry about the anti-gay perception the Church has created and perpetuated. That is why I bring it up. It is the very perception you recently thankfully have overcome.
I can only imagine how much blood the Church has on its’ hands for the message of condemnation and hatred it has spread about homosexuality and how it has caused so many to lose hope and even worse – – turned many people away from Christ. I can only imagine how many suicides the Church has caused as it has set itself up to be the Judge, which is something God never ordained. That is not the way it was supposed to be.
You see Carl, Jesus commanded His followers to “love one another,” but instead the Church has improperly used the Bible to judge (which is ironic to say the least).
Jesus Himself is the “Word of God,” Carl, not the Bible and Jesus loves you just as you are. Jesus loves everyone regardless of their sexual orientation. Jesus loves you also reader no matter what. Christians are not the judges, nor are pastors, nor is the Church.
The Bible has caused Christians to drive away the world Jesus came to save.
It is time to set the record straight. There is not one word Jesus ever spoke in the New Testament against homosexuality. It doesn’t matter to Jesus based on the fact he did not address it. Sure, Christians like to point to the Old Testament and the “law,” but Jesus did not come to give us, “Old Testament Christianity.” He came to give us freedom that flies above any flag and a freedom that is void of man’s judgment. He came to love and show us how to love. I thank God that you Carl, you are now free to be who you are. Jesus hung on the cross to give you that freedom that you are now living in.
You are showing us all that you can be openly gay and still be a big time player in the NFL – – and by doing so you are taking a big step towards breaking down a mindset, and false perception that does not belong in the Church or in the world.
Maybe someday the Church will learn it can draw a lot more people in through a sermon of acceptance than a loathing self-righteousness message of hatred that Jesus never spoke out of His mouth or ever intended.
It’s not that nobody wants to hear the truth, attendance is down – – it’s actually quite the opposite.
Daniel Kelly is a former NFL scout with the New York Jets. He was hired on the regime which featured Bill Parcells, Bill Belichick, Scott Pioli, Mike Tannenbaum, and Dick Haley. He currently writes for Sports Illustrated Detroit Lions and he is a contributing evaluator for Draft Diamonds. For more information about him visit his website at whateverittakesbook.com. He can be followed on Twitter @danielkellybook and his Facebook page is WHATEVER IT TAKES NFL TALK.