When the Church Proudly Embraces Sin
A half century ago A.W. Tozer preached these words: “This is the day of excusing sin instead of purging sin. An entire school of thought has developed justifying sin within the church and trying to prove that sin is perfectly normal, and therefore acceptable.”
If this was true back then, how much more so is it today? Indeed, we find examples of the church embracing sin instead of rebuking sin on a regular basis. And tragically, many of these churches take great pride in their affirmation and endorsement of known sin.
Consider this headline found in today’s press: “US Anglican church ordains lesbian bishop”. The article opens with these words: “A 56-year-old lesbian was ordained as a bishop by the Episcopal church on Saturday, reigniting an issue that has caused bitter divisions in the Anglican movement worldwide. Mary Glasspool became only the second openly gay bishop to be consecrated by the Episcopal Church – the governing Anglican body in the United States – after Gene Robinson was ordained in 2003.”
So how in the world can an entire denomination get things so wrong here? How can they simply throw out the clear teachings of Scripture on all this? There would be many reasons, but most have to do with embracing the homosexual agenda – hook, line and sinker – while rejecting the Bible as God’s authoritative word to us.
These so-called Christians have simply bought every myth being perpetrated by the radical homosexual lobby. There are many such myths, but one of the most often repeated ones is the idea that people are born homosexual. And amazingly some Christians have completely bought into this.
Thus they claim that “Homosexuality is a gift from God” or “God made me this way, so how can it be wrong?” As one example, a group of leaders and lecturers at one Melbourne theological institution wrote, “We believe God has made some people homosexual.”
A simple response is that God has not made anyone to be sinful. But because we live in a fallen world, everyone is born with a depraved and fallen nature. So even if certain people feel a same-sex attraction from a very young age, this does not make God the author of that attraction. It is a result of living in a fallen world.
Moreover, if God made people to be sinners (be it homosexuality or any other kind of sin), how can God then condemn such sin? It is simply not fair for God to condemn homosexuals or murderers or adulterers if God made them that way.
But people tend to argue from their experience back to Scripture, instead of letting Scripture be the judge of experience. Thus even if we concede with some that they may have felt same-sex desire for as long as they can remember, that still does not mean God made them that way. Nor does it mean that such desires are therefore acceptable. As psychologists Jones and Yarhouse put it, “The Christian church has never taught that all our desires come from God, has never taught that all our desires are good, and has never taught that every desire, even every good desire, ought to be fulfilled. A heterosexual man’s lust for a woman who is not his wife does not come from God and is not a good desire, and should not be indulged.”
The issue of a genetic basis of homosexuality cannot here be explored, although I have written extensively on the issue elsewhere. But even if a small percentage of the homosexual condition can be attributed to a genetic factor, that still speaks of living in a sin-stained world. And it still does not excuse people of not availing themselves of the saving and healing power of Christ to set them free from that situation. I again cite Jones and Yarhouse:
“At the broadest level all humans are heirs to a predisposition that we have not chosen and that propels us toward self-destruction and evil – our sinful nature. The plight of the homosexual who has desires and passions that he or she did not choose is in fact the common plight of humanity. We all face the same challenge: how are we to live when what we want is out of accord with what God tells us we should want in this life?”
And even if we are born with various desires which seem so real and so natural, we still have the ability to say no to them, especially when they are not in our best interest, or when they are clearly contrary for God’s design for us. We are not robots nor are we animals. We can say no to harmful desires and tendencies, and say yes to what is right.
Indeed, that is how civilisation works. As William F. Buckley once put it, “Civilization is about curbing appetites”. No society can last long if it simply says we should give in to every appetite, passion and desire that comes our way.
Christians of all people should know this. That we should say no to passion and desire which is not in accordance with God’s purposes for us should be obvious to every Bible-believing Christian. Sure, in a fallen world we will all be born with proclivities, desires and tendencies which are not of God. But we certainly do not need to just give in to them.
In fact, even with this fallen and sinful orientation, we can still determine whether or not we act out those inclinations and desires. We are not so utterly fallen that we have absolutely no say in the matter. We still enjoy God’s common grace.
Believers should never excuse sin just because we have a leaning toward something, or a desire for something. The Christian life is all about saying no to bad desires, and doing that which is right. Even a non-believer does not excuse all evil by appealing to desire. We certainly do not excuse a child molester and say, “well, he was just acting out his natural orientation”.
Frank Turek puts it this way: “Let’s suppose that scientists someday discover a genetic contribution to homosexual desires. Would that give license to behavior? No, all of us have desires that we ought not to act on. In other words, we were all born with an ‘orientation’ to bad behavior, but desires don’t justify the behavior. For example, some may have a genetic predisposition to alcohol, but who would advocate alcoholism? If someone has a genetic attraction to children, does that justify pedophilia? What homosexual activist would say that a genetic predisposition to violence justifies gay-bashing? (Born gay? What if the gay-basher was born mean?). Desires do not justify behaviors. In fact, there is a word we use to describe the disciplined restraint of destructive desires – it’s called ‘civilization’.”
Because of the Fall, we all come into this world as sinful, selfish beings. But the good news of the Gospel is that God has come to deal with the sin question and to set us free from our addiction to self, to selfishness, and to every sinful desire. We are clearly instructed to resist and overcome sinful desires, not simply give in to them.
Turek is worth quoting some more here: “But let’s suppose that some homosexuals cannot change their orientation. Does that mean they cannot control their behavior? Why do we expect pedophiles to resist their desires but not homosexuals? Because we know pedophiles are human beings who can choose not to act on their sexual desires just like anyone else. We also demand them to resist their desires because our children will not be safe if they don’t….
“The truth is, sexual behaviour is not compulsory. It is always a choice. We all must resist our sexual urges at times. And while it’s not desirable, some do so for their entire lives and never have sex. That’s possible for people with any sexual desire. After all, if I honestly believe that I’ve been born with heterosexual desires, am I required to engage in heterosexual acts? Am I not capable of controlling my sexual desires and remaining celibate? If you claim that I am not, then you have also made the absurd contention that no one in the history of the world has ever been morally responsible for any sexual crime, including rape, incest, and child molestation.”
The US Episcopalians should know better. But instead they have chosen to reject God and his word and have instead embraced the lies of the homosexual lobby. The Apostle Paul spoke about this situation 2000 years ago: “Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. They exchanged the truth of God for a lie” (Rom 1:24-25).
38 Replies to “When the Church Proudly Embraces Sin”
The use of the word orientation is a pseudo-scientific, subtle and devastating device to hide the truth that what we are really talking about is sexual urge or drive. We all have them, but if we exercise self control, or even deny such appetites – because to express them in such and such a way would be inappropriate – we will neither blow up or have our arms and legs fall off.
Arguments, put forward for justifying homosexual behaviour have long since abandoned an appeal to the “born like it” claim. Human rights have gone way past that, to simply saying that it is an absolute human right to have “What You Want When You Want It” (Gaydar’s mission statement), just so long as all parties are consenting.
Even if a lot of conditions are “natural“, such as being born blind or lame, this does not make them good. What about death? Isn’t this natural? So do we fight it?
Paul in Roman 8:18-23 talks about a time when all of nature will one day be redeemed:
“I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us. The creation waits in eager expectation for the sons of God to be revealed. For the creation was subjected to frustration, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the glorious freedom of the children of God. We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time. Not only so, but we ourselves, who have the first fruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies.”
David Skinner, UK
I appreciated your bringing some more of the more recent evangelical thought and discussion about those who may have a “homosexual orientation”. Though they may be small in number, they still are part of God’s creation. It is useful to be able to bring some clarity to our thinking, and then discussion with others on this pivotal topic.
Thanks Bill, a great article. Wonderfully logical and well argued.
I loved this quote.
“But people tend to argue from their experience back to Scripture, instead of letting Scripture be the judge of experience.”
I have lived such a way myself, before finally allowing Scripture to be the truth, rather than judging truth by my own damaged and often fickle feelings and experiences.
I found that once I started accepting Scripture as the highest authority, God became so much clearer to me, I understood Scripture so much better, and my ability to live God’s way was strengthened.
Good write – up, Bill. Fully agree with you. If we were allowed to excuse every sin we commit because of the fallen nature of mankind, this world will be in a far more worst state than it already is. If our fallenness or any genetic predisposition can justify our sinful acts, then God would not have needed to send His Son to save us from our sins and justify us through faith in Him.
Yes, I had just read The Age myself.
As far as the “born like it” issue, as David mentions, is concerned – it is probably used/raised more by “Christians” or “Christian Homosexuals”, where there is a greater sense of need to justify it in the face of what the Bible says.
Thank also for quoting Tozer. Its comforting to hear that our issues are not fundamentally different to other generations.
Here Here!! And to go one further, those who are in fellowship with a denomination who allows even a hint of homosexuality are commanded to honour the Word of God, see below:
Eph 5:3 But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints;
Such is not even to be ‘named’ amongst us, and therefore anyone in fellowship with a deonmination or church who does such must leave the denomination, fellowship or otherwise, or demand and have removed anyone who views homosexuality as even mildly acceptable scripturally.
Eph 5:11 And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.
We must not ‘fellowship’ but rather ‘reprove’, how can you say your not compromised when you stay in your group and rather not call for the removal of such from your group, and or tend your resignation?
2 Th 3:6 Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye withdraw yourselves from every brother that walketh disorderly, and not after the tradition which he received of us.
Anyone involved in such a denomination is to be deemed as compromised along with even the 1% who allow homosexuality. You must ‘withdraw’ yourself, (resign, hand in your credential and leave proudly standing for Jesus Christ) or have those ‘for’ homosexuality or even mildly compromised on this issue removed immediately!
1 Ti 6:5 Perverse disputings of men of corrupt minds, and destitute of the truth, supposing that gain is godliness: from such withdraw thyself.
Anyone who names the name of Jesus Christ must ‘withdraw’ themselves from their fellowship, for you are one ‘body’ in unity with those who agree to homosexuality! Remove them or you leave but you only have two choices scripturally!
2 Co 6:14 Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? Bad company ruins good morals! you are not to fellowship with those who say they are christian and lobby for or practice homosexuality.
The issue of reaching out to and loving homosexuals in order to proclaim Christ to them is a whole other issue, but to be in ‘fellowship’ with such people, shows not only their compromise but also yours ‘EVEN IF YOU DON’T AGREE WITH HOMOSEXUALITY’
IF YOU ARE A PART OF A DENOMINATION THAT ALLOWS THIS YOU ARE GUILTY WITH THEM, DEMAND THEY REPENT OR TEND YOUR RESIGNATION AND STAND UP FOR JESUS!
Sorry Bill, Jesus is really mad about this! Great article!
While agreeing with your excellent article, I want to point out that homosexual sin is not the only one that Christians are warned not to commit in Scripture. My husband and I read 1 Corinthians 6 this morning as our daily Bible reading – and in verses 9 and 10 there is a long list of behaviours which exclude people from the Kingdom of Heaven. These include fornication/sexual immorality and covetousness/greed (NKJ/NIV). I cannot remember having heard sermons against these sins in my fairly long life as a Christian (44 years). Yet Paul reminds us that ALL sexual sins are particularly damaging. Perhaps the more reasonable members of the “Christian” homosexual lobby might be more ready to listen to being told to be celibate if heterosexuals were more often reminded of their need to be self controlled.
Dorian: the question is, how far does denominational “fellowship” extend?
Should Anglicans in Australia withdraw from the Anglican church because the Anglican church in the US has gay bishops?
Should Presbyterians in Australia withdraw from the Presbyterian church because Presbyterians in Scotland have gay clergy?
Should Lutherans in Australia withdraw from the Lutheran church because Lutherans in Sweden have gay priests?
P.S. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. Churches don’t approve of homosexuality overnight. There is a long theological slippery slope that occurs over 2 or 3 decades, and this has been well documented by scholars such as Wayne Grudem. Many churches could already be on the slope without being aware of it. Two key signs that a denomination has started down the slope are the removal of a statement about biblical inerrancy from their doctrinal statement, and the acceptance of female clergy (pastors and elders).
Has either of these things happened in *your* denomination?
Hey Bill, thank you for this article! I found it extremely useful to me. As always you are thinking of the implications of what people are saying or doing and it challenges me to continually do the same.
I wonder if we will see any churches from that denomination stand up for Truth and remove themselves from affiliation with the Anglican movement.
Michelle Guillemaud, Canada
Numerous African Anglicans for example are already doing this.
Bill Muehlenberg, CultureWatch
It would be so easy to be overcome by sorrow, when we consider how wounded by sin and how broken by divisions is the Body of Christ here on earth.We could even be tempted to silence and a false compassion, in some situations. But we must hold fast to the truth and continue to speak the truth without compromise. We must actively defend the truth when it is distorted or denied. We must also pray always for all poor sinners, starting with ourselves. Our Lord loves us all equally and He is the only one who can judge rightly, since He alone sees the soul of each one of us. It can be extremely difficult to clearly teach the truth without seeming to pass judgment on others, but to remain silent when scripture is distorted or misrepresented by those who claim authority to lead God’s people; that would be a very grave fault. Keep fighting the good fight Bill and may God guard and protect you and yours today and always
Great but Sad article. I commented yesterday on my blog about the relationship between the acceptance of sin and the lack of effectiveness in dealing with mental illness. I hope you don’t mind my inserting your article right in mine, with acknowledgment of course.
Richard Bunn, Canada
Thanks for that timely word, Bill.
Perhaps part of the problem is also that people no longer see sin as a wrong against God, but only in terms of a wrong against fellow human beings. From there it is only a small step to accepting that an act is not sinful if no-one is hurt. Besides sexual acts between consenting adults, including fornication, adultery and sadomasochism, also acts like gambling, addictions, and even tax evasion and insurance fraud are looked on as “victimless crimes”, and therefore not really sinful. Only a proper understanding of sin as a wrong over against God (Ps. 51:4) can prevent us going down this line of thinking. That also means we have to accept that God sets the standards for behaviour.
Thank you Bill. May God continue to give you wisdom and isight in order to correct the loose thinking of our crazy mixed-up society. We pray for you and appreciate you greatly.
Yes go ahead.
Bill Muehlenberg, CultureWatch
Quite right Bill
Bill Muehlenberg, CultureWatch
Many thanks Robert
Bill Muehlenberg, CultureWatch
interesting stuff indeed – I like especially the comments about the fact that we are not to give in to our desires- even legitimate ones- just because we have them.
Stop me if I’ve said this before, but Craig Hill has an interesting line on the ‘born gay’ thing – essentially, he takes the line that even if people are born (as far as they can tell) with this orientation or that (gay, mean, crabby) it does not mean that God made them that way, because the creative process does not begin at birth, or even conception, but in the mind of God. We are all, as developing humans, subject to spiritual and psychological input in the womb, which can pre-dispose us to certain behaviours (crabby, etc) when we emerge. cf. Craig Hill, 1992, ‘The Ancient Paths’, Harvest Books ISBN 1-881189-01-5
None of this excuses the line taken by some Christians as quoted in your article, but might go some way to explaining why a charitable but uninformed person might take it.
God bless you, and keep up the good work.
Malcolm Wilson, Warragul, Vic.
Hi Bill – thank for the article. I like that line that you quote from Frank Turek “In fact, there is a word we use to describe the disciplined restraint of destructive desires – it’s called ‘civilization’.”
One wonders whether this decline in ‘civilization’ is a sign of the decline and eventual extinction of the ‘western’ cultures in our world, just as many other cultures / realms / kingdoms / empires in history also died.
I must confess to being a little sceptical about Brian Houston over the years. But his honesty and openness last night on the network Seven’s Sunday night program showed authenticity and courage. To put my point into context of your article, Brian’s approximate response to the question of the Hillsong Church “going the next step” and accepting homosexuality was the perfect answer – any sexual activity outside of marriage is sin. Very reassuring to know that the fastest growing Church in Australia is sticking to it’s guns regarding the Lord’s Word in the matter of ‘safe’ sexuality.
Hi Bill, re calling a sin a sin. Don’t know if you would have seen the Interview with Brian Houston from Hillsong last night at 6;30 on the Sunday current affairs show.
Seemed to be a lot of beating around the bush and hedging when asked directly if homosexuality and abortion were sins. He sort of implied indirectly they were but why not just answer a direct question with a direct answer such as YES. And if people are offended well so be it. On the homosexual thing he finally got to saying sex outside of marriage was sin, but what does that mean, leaving people up in the air that it might be okay in a same sex marriage? On the abortion thing he was even weaker.
Sadly this is the same sort of weak answers I have gotten from my local Liberal federal member who was one of the first to push for the availability of the morning after abortion pill.
Thanks Anthony and Rob
I did not see last night’s program, and it is interesting that you two offer differing takes on what was said!
However, several years ago the ACC, which is headed by Houston, changed – and watered down – their positions on both divorce and homosexuality. So it remains to be seen how long the line will be held. I hope it is held however.
Bill Muehlenberg, CultureWatch
It’s invalid to compare this situation with alcoholism, paedophilia, adultery or violence as you have done, because there are no victims or other parties affected. It is just two adult women who have chosen to live together in a loving consensual relationship. It is no one else’s business and anyone who thinks otherwise is an interfering old busybody.
We need compassion and understanding for those who are different from the “norm”. Bigotry and hatred belong in the past.
I’m well aware that you’ll condemn me for these views, but I’m fed up with the unhealthy obsession that some Christians have about the sex lives of other individuals.
Marsha O’Brien, Newcastle
It is not clear if you are claiming to be a Christian here. If you are not, society nonetheless has a very real interest in matters such as sexuality and marriage. And there are victims to the homosexual lifestyle – it is a dangerous and high risk affair which all societies should be concerned about. And since same-sex parenting is also part of the mix, then societies have even more reason to be concerned.
If you are claiming to be a Christian, then it seems you have just jettisoned the Bible to push your trendy agenda. Jesus is very much concerned about human sexuality, and to affirm the biblical position on this does not make one “an interfering old busybody” as you suggest. Name calling is always easier than making a proper argument and dealing with the evidence.
Yes it is clear that you are “fed up” – all part of your call for tolerance and acceptance no doubt! And why does showing concern for the well-being of society, the rights of children, the good of marriage, and the integrity of the biblical text amount to having an “unhealthy obsession”?
And what exactly does “Bigotry and hatred” have to do with anything that has been said here? If anything, you appear to be showing your hatred and bigotry toward anyone who happens to differ from you on this issue. I always have to chuckle when those carrying on the most about tolerance, love and acceptance are so intolerant, un-accepting and unloving toward anyone else who dares to disagree!
Bill Muehlenberg, CultureWatch
Thanks Bill. Very good article.
If we are going to accept the argument “born this way” as a way to excuse sin and adopt the lifestyle, then one should also plead the same argument re stealing: “I’m a kleptomaniac because I have that inborn tendency.” Or, “I’m a serial killer because I have that inborn tendency towards violence.” Or again, “I’m an idolater because I have an inborn tendency which attracts me to paganism.” If these expedients are allowed then sin does not exist and crime is merely a disease requiring “treatment” (and we know what that means in a totalitarian society!).
And Marsha, the now standard “victimless” plea is an irrelevance. As Bill has already observed, sin is sin, and is defined by God’s Law (1 John 3:4), NOT by human efforts to redefine the Moral Law by stratagems and sophistries. Hence the “private vs public” or “victimless versus hurt-to-others” are merely man-made sophistries which God the Lawgiver simply does not acknowledge. As I have pointed out to various people who have objected that Christians have an obsession with sexual sins, in Romans 1:18-32, when discussing the downward spiral of human depravity, it is the apostle who singles out homosexual practice as evidence of this depravity, not the Bill Muehlenbergs of this world. So your quarrel is not with Bill but with the Apostle Paul.
Murray R. Adamthwaite
Marsha, THE JUNGLE BOOK is based on Rudyard Kipling’s story of the same name. The movie tells the tale of Mowgli, the “man cub” found by benevolent panther Bagheera, who tucks the baby boy safely away with a family of wolves. Mowgli grows up happy, living in the jungles of India. But the jungle won’t be safe for him once the tiger Shere Khan finds out here’s there. So wise Bagheera, denying his own affections towards Mowgli and those of Mowgli himself, who wants to stay in the jungle, begins leading Mowgli toward civilization.
I see here a parallel with gay adoption and a lesson that gays might learn from the natural world. Even though Bagheera and the other animals would like Mowgli to stay with them, along with Mowgli himself, the wise and selfless Bagheera returns the boy to his kind: male and female – not male and animal, or male and male, or male and man – hole cover but male and female.
On the Today Programme 4 November 1998, Mr Jack Straw , the former Lord Chief Chancellor and the Secretary of State of Justice for Britain,said:
“I’m not in favour of gay couples seeking to adopt children because I question whether that is the right start in life. We should not see children as trophies. Children, in my judgement, and I think it’s the judgement of almost everyone including single parents, are best brought up where you have two natural parents in a stable relationship. There’s no question about that. What we know from the evidence is that, generally speaking, that stability is more likely to occur where the parents are married than where they are not.”
Since then of course Jack Straw, one of Tony Blair’s closest and unprincipled ministers has done a volte face.
It is interesting that the monkey king, in the film, Jungle Book, like the homosexuals and lesbians, wants to be like us for ulterior motives and not because they want to be like us at all.
David Skinner, UK
Marsha, this refrain that what homosexuals and lesbians do behind their doors is a private matter and of no concern to anyone else is utter lies. Far from keeping to themselves the Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transsexual (LGBTs) are invading our schools, private and family businesses and demanding that our children behave like them.
The LGBTs have vowed to re-engineer society and transform its most intimate parts. So please don’t give us the line that what they do behind closed doors is none of our business when they are demanding that we attend their weddings and celebrate their disordered lives.
David Skinner, UK
Hi Jereth, I’m a little hesitant to answer as this is not my blog, so I will answer your comment and leave it there. In answer to your first question: If an Australia body is connected in fellowship with an International Body the answer is a resounding ‘Yes’! My two options apply, go to the head and ask why we as a body are affiliated with another who allows homosexuality, then boldy state, either we get away from them or I leave! The Bible states ‘abstain from even the apprearance of evil’, as well as not allow an occasion for the adversary to speak reproachfully, we shouldn’t even have the same name if reference to that name allowed homosexuality. Secondly, as youll notice from my comment, many people quote ‘man’ I tend to quote ‘The Man’ a lot more often, I agree with part of the quote. No for the Biblical inerrancy, God has protected His Word! I disagree with the decades statement both scripturally and experientially, it can and does happen a lot quicker than that. Regarding women in ministry I am also a proud and very strong egalatarianist rather than a complementarianist and I will debate anyone scripture for scripture regarding it, chase me up and i’ll be happy to debate more, but as i said, this is Bill’s blog. God bless you!
Regarding the ‘born gay’ issue, I recently watched a lecture by a man compiling the latest research from genetic scientists. He shows a picture of a man who had the ‘bald gene’ yet he had a full head of hair. He then showed a picture of a cat that had been cloned from another cat, they were differently coloured and looked differently, yet they had the exact same DNA. He then argued that even with the exact same DNA ‘outside’ influences can cause a gene to do something different. DNA is interpreted by RNA and then becomes amino acids and proteins, yet RNA was subject to outside influences. Thus, to have the bald gene doesn’t necessarily mean that you will be or go bald. I think this is definitely a feather in the cap ready for the ‘gay gene’ theory, when gene’s are influenced through ‘OUTWARD’ experiences, ie: pornography, sexual abuse, etc.
To answer your question, I am a Christian, but one who prefers the Good News of the Gospel over the Bad News of Bill.
Your website takes the most depressingly negative view of the world and of humanity that I have ever encountered. All you ever do is criticise others, and rarely if ever do you mention the Good News.
Yes, promiscuous sex has consequences for the parties involved, but that is true for heterosexuals too, and you don’t obsess about them. Nor do you ever mention the horrific scandal of clerical abuse of children and the equally horrific cover-ups by church leaders. Instead you focus here on an individual in a committed adult relationship who has no doubt conquered extreme prejudice to rise to a leadership position in the church.
The claim that you and others here make about gays and lesbians having a disproportionate influence on society is pure exaggeration, the product of an obsessed mind with no understanding of human diversity. Jesus Christ himself never mentions the issue. Of course anyone can cherry-pick St Paul or the Old Testament to support a particular position, but I prefer to listen to the words of Christ himself who preached love and acceptance of others.
So how about looking instead for positives in the world, Bill? Smell the roses, appreciate the beauty of creation and celebrate the sheer joy of living, and maybe then you might inspire others instead of encouraging them to wallow in your depressing negativity.
But there is no good news of the gospel without the bad news. The biblical gospel is this: we are all sinners going to a lost eternity, but Christ has taken our place and our punishment, so that if we repent and turn to him, forsaking self and embracing him, we can be set free of bondage and our death sentence. If that is not to your liking, then just what gospel do you preach Marsha?
And a Christian is of course one who follows the teachings of Christ and the Bible, and does not push worldly agendas. Yes all sexual activity outside of heterosexual marriage is wrong, and yes I do deal with that as well. Yet you simply seem to want to make excuses for homosexuality, and condone something Scripture clearly condemns.
Sadly your fallacious reasoning comes straight out of the homosexual lobbyist’s handbook, not the Bible. Jesus did not talk about racism, rape or pollution either. But by your silly reasoning he must be in favour of all three! The Bible makes it clear from start to finish what God’s plan is for human sexuality, and Jesus quite clearly affirmed that in places such as Matt. 19:4-6 and Mark 10:6-9.
If you want “to listen to the words of Christ himself” then let me provide you with a few (the ones that are clearly not about ‘smelling the roses’ and ones you seem to want to ignore altogether):
-Matt 7:21 Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.
-Matthew 10:34 Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace on the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword.
-Matthew 23:33 You snakes! You brood of vipers! How will you escape being condemned to hell?
-Matthew 25:41 “Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels.
-Mark 8:32-33 He spoke plainly about this, and Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. But when Jesus turned and looked at his disciples, he rebuked Peter. “Get behind me, Satan!” he said. “You do not have in mind the things of God, but the things of men.”
-John 6:60-67 On hearing it, many of his disciples said, “This is a hard teaching. Who can accept it?” Aware that his disciples were grumbling about this, Jesus said to them, “Does this offend you? What if you see the Son of Man ascend to where he was before! The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The words I have spoken to you are spirit and they are life. Yet there are some of you who do not believe.” For Jesus had known from the beginning which of them did not believe and who would betray him. He went on to say, “This is why I told you that no one can come to me unless the Father has enabled him.” From this time many of his disciples turned back and no longer followed him. “You do not want to leave too, do you?” Jesus asked the Twelve.
-John 8:44 You are of your father the devil.
-John 9:39 Jesus said, “For judgment I have come into this world so that the blind will see and those who see will become blind”.
-John 14:21 Whoever has my commands and obeys them, he is the one who loves me. He who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love him and show myself to him.”
-Rev 3:19 Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest, and repent.
Sounds like a bit of “negativity” to me Marsha. And there are plenty more such verses that can be produced here. But it is clear that you simply want to dismiss such passages, because they do not fit into your embrace of the world and its agenda. The Bible speaks to that as well:
James 4:4 You adulterous people, don’t you know that friendship with the world is hatred toward God? Anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God.
It seems that instead of letting Scripture speak in all its clarity on this and related issues, you have chosen to dismiss much of these teachings, finding them too hard and offensive. Jesus too saw many people turn away from him who thought his teachings were too hard and offensive.
We should not be sitting in judgment over God’s Word – it should be sitting in judgment over us. But it is evident that you are quite intent on justifying and condoning the homosexual lifestyle, while ignoring and closing yourself off to the clear teaching of Scripture. That is a very precarious place to be in.
Bill Muehlenberg, CultureWatch
“But there is no good news of the gospel without the bad news”
Spot on Bill.
I never cease to be amazed at how wide spread the modern delusion promoted by Napoleon Hill, Norman Vincent Peale, Robert Schuller, et al, that positive is good and negative is bad has infected Christians.
It is “never” whether something positive is of God and negative is not but whether it is God’s truth, and much of that truth can be said to be in the negative, especially when it comes to the cross and it’s principal of death first and only then resurrection.
As an electrician who has dealt with these for nearly fifty years in real life the very first thing we do on a job is to firmly establish the negative (or ground) before we even think about turning any power on, if we don’t there is no reference point and someone can easily end up dead.
I hope that makes sense.
Seems to me if professing Christians and the church at large knew and “made it their experience” we wouldn’t be in such a mess. As Tozer says the cross first kills everybody who touches it. and then they can never be the same again, that”s what happened to me and it’s real.
Frankly a cross less Christianity is a false Christianity and today it is all to common.
But sadly I suspect many of these believers have never heard of the trio you mentioned. They simply get their woefully mixed up and fuzzy thinking from the surrounding culture. They are slaves to the spirit of the age, and simply soak in what is handed to them, without using any spiritual discernment or checking things out with the word of God. That is the tragedy of so many today. Their lives are based on feelings, pop culture and whatever seems right – just like those in the book of Judges.
Bill Muehlenberg, CultureWatch
Can you cite resources or give a link to the genetic studies you mentioned in your comment above?
I had not heard of the RNA mediation of DNA in health outcome and traits. I and several of my friends involved in prayer ministry and who have family members affected by inheritable conditions would like to read this material.
Thanks, Sibyl Smith, Florida, USA
To use the excuse “God made me this way” ignores the fact that pedophiles can use the same argument, as can the violent and thieves etc. One of my workmates uses the same excuse for his violent outbursts. His psychiatrist gives his “condition” a name and this makes his poor behavior acceptable. We his workmates have no excuses for rejecting his behavior.
Bill have you seen this. A gay union today in Brunswick at a United Church. It was not mentioned in ABC 6pm news and Current Affairs.
Yes I did see that and may yet write it up.
Bill Muehlenberg, CultureWatch
Despite prior our conditioned behavioral and emotional resposes, proclivities/habits and our genetic traits and pre-dispositions, new healthy behaviors can (and should) be practiced until they are learned until they are established and unhealthy behaviors are overcome and become extinct so that we can function productively and harmlessly in society.
Anger management is possible, even in the case of violent outburst…but society and children should be protected from dangerous people until they overcome their pre-dispositions or conditioned responses.
Sibyl Smith, Florida, USA