Hot Potato One: Homosexuality
"For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord."1
About two decades ago a teenager asked me the question: "Do you think homosexuality should be legalized?"
Regardless of what I thought at the time, much of our culture has come a long way since then in accepting homosexuality as "an alternate lifestyle."
True, everybody has a right to decide for themselves whether or not homosexuality should be legalized or accepted as an alternate lifestyle. What I did in this instance was share what I believed God's Word had to say about the subject. "According to God's Word,” I answered, “homosexuality is an unnatural condition2 It is listed with various other sins which are all destructive to human personality, and as such are opposed by God."
The Bible also says that God will forgive all who confess their sins, but indicates that those who willfully practice sexual immorality, idolatry, adultery, male prostitution, homosexuality, stealing, greed, drunkenness, slandering, and swindling will not inherit the kingdom of God.3
If God is opposed to these damaging behaviors, can we justly justify or legalize any one of them? The reason God is opposed to these actions (and all other sins) is because they are harmful to those whom He loves—us. Furthermore, it has never been proven that homosexuality is in one's genes any more than pedophilia is. And if they are, perhaps sin, too, is in our genes because we are born with a sin nature. But would that justify sinful acts? In fact, there are usually deep psychological causes behind many of these external "acts of sin." The causes often have their roots in the past and need to be confronted if a person is to find wholeness, healing and recovery—emotional and spiritual.
If we justify and legalize any act of sin, we harm the person involved much more than we ever help him. It gives him/her an excuse not to confront and resolve his/her problem.
As Christians we are to accept and love the sinner and not judge or condemn him (because we are all sinners and are probably all guilty of at least greed, gossip, or slandering which are listed in God’s Word along with the sin of homosexuality). This doesn't mean that we accept, excuse, or approve anyone's sinful behavior (including our own). Very often it is a failure in love in early childhood that "drives" people into some acts of sin. Only love, Christ's unconditional love through us, will ever draw these people out again.
Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please help me to always accept what You say and not yield to the pressure of so-called political correctness. Help me to take the beam out of my own eye before trying to take the splinter out of anyone else's eye. And like You, while I oppose all sin, please help me to love the sinner unconditionally and thereby help draw him/her to You for Your healing grace, forgiveness, and victory over his/her sinful behavior. Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's name, amen."
1. Romans 6:23 (NIV).
2. Romans 1:27
3. 1 Corinthians 6:9-11