10:56AM EDT 5/30/2013 Larry Tomczak
This is Part 2 of a three-part series on whether Christians can be gay. (Check out Part 1 here.)
Multitudes today are confused about gay-related issues. It’s easier to “go with the flow” and steer clear of the intimidation to conform. The P.C. (politically correct) police are ever present.
Because few of us want to be perceived as “backward and bigoted homophobes” (as tolerance advocates often brand those with whom they disagree) or as people who are not in step with the “progressive, equality, non-judgemental” mantra, it’s easy to clam up and play it cool, saying things like, “Of course I’m for equality and non-discrimination.” But that’s not an option for faithful, obedient followers of Jesus! As Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. warned, “When we learn the truth but choose to remain silent, that’s when we begin to die.”
Dr Alveda King, Martin’s niece, told me in an interview for our video project Is Gay OK? 10 Things Every Christian Needs to Know, if her uncle were alive today, he would remain steadfast in defense of biblical marriage and reject attempts to justify immoral conduct as a “civil right.” He’d remind us again of his oft-quoted words concerning the church’s role in society: “The church is neither the master of the state nor the servant of the state, but rather the conscience of the state.”
1. To call oneself an authentic Christian and remain a practicing homosexual is a direct contradiction of biblical teaching and contrary to the “abundant life” promised by Jesus.
Just as “Christian hatred” is an oxymoron, so too is the term “gay Christian.” God offers forgiveness and freedom through His Son, which is the good news (gospel) of the Christian message.
According to the Christian faith, once a person responds to the gospel message in repentance and faith, he or she finds a new start to then fulfill their destiny in life. Even as Saul of Tarsus —a murderer—became Paul the apostle, a great saint and missionary leader, Christianity asserts that God redeems repentant people who may be “homosexuals, adulterers, drunkards, idolaters or whatever” and transforms their lives! It happened in the “San Francisco” of their day—Corinth—and has been repeated all over the world. Jesus Christ didn’t invade human history as the world’s Messiah to merely make our selfish, sinful lives a little better and more prosperous. He came to totally transform our lives and not only forgive our sins but free us from sin’s power!
2. Practicing homosexuality is most definitely sinful and contradicting biblical teaching on God’s order for human relationships and family.
We’re aware this is contrary to what some “religious,” “gay-affirming” churches and leaders put forth (they reject the authority of the Bible and twist the meaning of passages), but they must be challenged and called back to faithfulness to the truth. The Bible consistently, unambiguously, without exception prohibits practicing homosexuality and tells us to honor God’s design for sexual behavior between men and women. The purpose is that we enjoy a fulfilling sexual experience in marriage and ideally have children as an expression of our marital love. Stating this forthrightly is not “hate speech.” This is an expression of divine love because sinful behavior not only hurts our Creator, but also is harmful to us (and others). God gives us laws for our own good!
3. Homosexuality is not simply another “alternative lifestyle.”
In the Hebrew-Christian Bible, there are multiple times in both the Old and New Testament accounts where homosexuality and other immoral activities are explicitly condemned as dishonorable to God and the natural order (the way things were designed to work) and as destructive to those involved with them. An entire chapter in the Old Testament lists certain activities and calls them “detestable,” stating in no uncertain terms, “Stay away!” The New Testament uses five terms to describe both male and female homosexual conduct: “unnatural,” “perverted,” “degrading,” “shameful” and “indecent.” Not to be facetious, but is that hard to understand? Scripture throughout forbids us to be sexually involved in seven areas: with parents, with children, with brothers and sisters, with another spouse, with animals, with dead people and with the same sex. These never change.
4. All of us are born with a fallen nature that gives us a tendency to do wrong.
We don’t have to train children to lie, steal, harm others, act selfishly or demand their own way. Having a free will to make choices, all of us are accountable for our own actions. Biology can’t make us do wrong, although circumstances can influence us. To say otherwise leaves people as victims, not responsible for their behavior—a convenient excuse. That’s like what a present-day celebrity, married eight years with two sons, who shamelessly committed adultery with a younger country singer and then left his wife to marry her did. He later told his wife, “It wasn’t your fault. I’ve cheated from day one. It’s just who I am.”
According to Scripture and science, homosexuality has never been proven to be part of someone’s biological constitution, so everyone decides his or her lot in life (although all of us are influenced differently). The bottom line: We do express understanding regarding people’s upbringing while not releasing people from taking personal responsibility for their actions.
5. There is a major distinction between people’s behavior and their race.
My black friends can’t decide to become Caucasian. My wife can’t decide to become a full-blown man (though today some try!). One is chosen; the other unchosen. Homosexuality is something someone does—not something someone is. Each of us is personally responsible for our behavior. (Otherwise, drunk drivers, rapists and child molesters are “off the hook” and play the “victim card.”) To confuse this wrongly creates a new “minority” status and special “rights” for a very small segment of the population representing no more than 2 to 3 percent (not the inaccurate, inflated figures of 10 percent or more).
Note: Even this 2-3 percent may be less because some cite a prison experience, college experimentation or one-time, drug-influenced encounter as part of “homosexual” background.
6. The cause of homosexuality is complex, yet there are common, agreed-upon contributing factors:
- The person’s self-will
- A dysfunctional home environment
- Spousal or child abuse
- Seduction by peers or authority figures. (Studies show approximately 85 percent of lesbians were abused or molested and 40 percent of gay men were seduced or molested by older gay men when they were young boys.)
- Media influence
- Absence of a father
- Childhood experience/experimentation
- Confusion about identity/misunderstanding “artistic bent”
Read Part 1. Continue checking charismamag.com for part 3.