Quite awhile back, I watched an episode of Dr. Phil where they were exploring the issue of homosexuality vs. Christianity. One of the lesbians appearing in that episode made the following statement:
Let’s not forget that the Bible was used to deny women the right to vote, to support slavery and look what “good and decent Christians” did to our Native Americans in the name of Christianity. Homosexuality, I believe, is a test made by God for all those “Christians” on THE primary commandment and fundamental basis of ALL religions…to love one another as thyself. To say, I love everyone BUT… negates everything you just said. There is a pyramid of hate and the bottom levels starts with the unacceptable and name calling and escalates to the violence and murder of innocent people.
Seriously think about what you are saying when you say, “I love everyone but don’t talk about it.” It’s okay if I’m straight, and talk about my dating life, or children or husband but you can’t say a word about your life. Would you want to go to work and live your life in silence? I think not.
I’m okay in the eyes of God, loved and accepted for who I am… a lesbian, newly “married” to a wonderful woman, active in my church and my community.
A much more accurate statement would have been: “Let us not forget that the Bible was MISUSED to deny women the vote, to support slavery, etc.” and for that matter, justifying a whole host of ungodly acts (why didn’t she include the Crusades and the Spanish Inquisition, while she was at it?).” Just because misguided people of the past misinterpreted the Bible to support their various agendas does not negate the Truth of God’s Word nor its demands upon our lives, behaviors, and relationships.
Christianity and it’s foundation, Judaism, are the only world religions whose fundamental operating principle is to love others as we love ourselves. That is a direct quote from Jesus Christ Who was defining the most important of the laws found in the Jewish Torah and no other founder of any world religion or any other so-called “holy book” for any of those religions says anything remotely like it.
I’m fed up with people, gay or Christian, equating the Bible’s stand on homosexuality with hatred and intolerance. Does God hate homosexuals? Absolutely not! Are His followers commanded to hate them? Not even close! Does He hate all types of sinful behavior, homosexuality included? You bet!
On top of that, I’ve met numerous homosexuals and lesbians over the years and only one of them fell into the “atheist” category described in the first chapter of Romans. You know the common thread I’ve found in every one of the rest? They all were severely abused and/or molested/raped as children or young adults. Puts a little different light on the issue, doesn’t it? Having been abused/molested doesn’t justify their sin, but it sure explains a lot about why they ended up the way they did. And I’m not the only believer in the Body of Christ who has noticed the strong connection between homosexuality/lesbianism and pedophilia.
If you identify yourself as a homosexual, you are indeed loved and accepted by God just as you are. He also loves you way too much to allow you to remain in that sinful lifestyle unchallenged. And your religious works won’t save you, just like the dead religious works of adulterers, murderers, drunkards, the power-hungry, gossips, and others won’t save them.
The Unassailable, Inescapable Issue of Porneia
I’ve had extensive discussions with a lesbian gay activist in times past and she spent a significant amount of time and effort quoting all the so-called “biblical scholarship” wherein fellow activists had attempted to explain away all the passages from the Bible condemning homosexuality (notice I did not say “condemning homosexuals”) as translational errors from the original Greek and Hebrew. Even if all that were all true (and I do not believe that for even a second), there is one Greek word that all of these gay activists interestingly refuse to deal with and that is porneia which is where we get the modern word “pornography.”
The word porneia is translated throughout the New Testament into the English word “fornication” and is included in the list of the “works of the flesh” found in Galatians 5:19-21:
Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law. And those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. (emphasis mine)
Porneia is defined in Thayer’s Greek Lexicon as “illicit sexual intercourse,” and specifically lists what types: adultery (extramarital sex with a married person), fornication (extramarital sex with a non-married person), homosexuality, lesbianism, bestiality (sex with animals), and incest (sex with close relatives).
Also in this list of the works of the flesh is the Greek word aselgeia which translates into the English word “lewdness.” The literal meaning of aselgeia is “unbridled lust, excess, promiscuity, wantonness, outrageousness, shamelessness, insolence.” These are all behaviors that are an extremely common characteristic of the homosexual community (especially its activists) and such behaviors were indeed publicly exhibited and confessed by the gay woman with the red hair on the show.
Even if the word porneia was not in the list (and it is indeed listed) and all other verses in Scripture were removed from the equation as inaccurately translated (and they aren’t), the fact is that the vast majority of homosexuals consistently operate outside the bounds of a monogamous committed relationship (the clear demand of Scripture regarding all expressions of sexuality) which would indicate that they are functioning in their fleshly desires rather than the Spirit of God.
Here is an excellent video on the topic of porneia:
Should We Hate & Reject Homosexuals?
Does the Bible say that God hates homosexuals? No way! He loves all humans equally, yet hates all sin committed by them. He is the ultimate Redeemer, Who can deliver any human from any bondage. According to Scripture, homosexuality is simply another sin of the flesh, though the accompanying addiction to it is one of the hardest of all addictions to deal with. Homosexuals are no more worthy of receiving protected minority status as anyone else who practices the works of the flesh in that list.
Does the Bible say homosexuals are all going to Hell because they’re gay? No! It says people who go to Hell choose to go there because they have refused to surrender their lives to the lordship of Jesus Christ. Sin was dealt with on the cross and is no longer the issue.
Should homosexuals be excluded from our churches? No way! How else will they receive the help they need if they have no access to the Body of Christ for support and assistance? Jesus hung out with the underclass of his day, the rejects of society. I cannot help but believe that there was a homosexual or three in that crowd because the Roman Empire was rife with them.
People who are sick go to hospitals and those who are spiritually sick (all of mankind) need a spiritual hospital. Churches are supposed to be spiritual hospitals to help spiritually sick people overcome their sickness (sin) and train them to effectively and compassionately reach out to other spiritually sick people. Churches are not supposed to be places where self-righteous people gather to affirm how “good” they are to themselves and one another while rejecting those who they deem as “less than.” Having said that, however, gays should be excluded from positions of authority within churches just like any other person who does not qualify for leadership in the Church due to sexual or other blatantly sinful misconduct.
Can you be a Christian and also be a homosexual? Sure, just like anyone else in the Church who has a sexual lust problem or a sexual addiction. Will those people be joyful and fulfilled and blessed spiritually and materially by God while engaged in an ongoing promiscuous lifestyle with either sex? Not hardly! One of the requirements for qualifying for all those blessings is repentance, which means that we stop doing things our way and start doing things His way. And that includes turning away from ALL sexual sin — homosexuality included — and relying upon God’s grace to make that repentance stick.
In other words, an abstinent homosexual believer should be treated no differently as any other fellow-Christian who has repented from his/her sins and received God’s mercy and forgiveness. And hating a homosexual is just as grievous a sin in the eyes of God as actually committing homosexual acts.
People should read what the Bible actually says, rather than repeating erroneous Scripture interpretations handed down by the ignorant, the prejudiced, or those with an agenda to promote. I’m just as fed up with ministers and Christians who persist in treating homosexuals as some special class of irredeemable sinners — and therefore “less-than” — as I am with gay activists who persist in justifying their sin through questionable Bible “scholarship.”
Thanks for reading!