So I had the Leslie Gore song, Sunshine, Lollipops and Rainbows playing in my head as I was thinking about how to share my thoughts on a very sensitive topic in our culture today. I originally posted this picture on my facebook page while at the beach during the same week the breaking news on Bruce Jenner's introduction of Caitlyn and the Duggar sisters' interview. A lot has been on everyone's minds lately concerning sexuality and God and I wanted to share a guest post from my husband, Scott, because I think he does a really nice job of explaining why Christians hold certain views and how to share that with the LGBT community in a thoughtful way. Here are just a few things that might be helpful to anyone reading the following post to know about us and where we are coming from, and they are . . .
1) I, myself, struggled with same sex attraction and only a handful of people knew that until now. Looking back, I think it was because I saw pornographic images of females at an early age and it kind of flipped a switch, so to speak. It took years to get those images out of my thought patterns and I still have to be careful as to what I let myself see.
2) We have people we love dearly, that identify themselves as gay and so in no way do we want to hurt them.
3) After I was engaged to Scott, I asked him what he thought about God and who he thought Jesus was. He believed in a generic type god and that Jesus was a good teacher and historical figure, but not the Son of God.
4) I called of off our engagement because I felt God was leading me to do so, and that changed our future for the better.
5) I grew up in a Christian environment, but had never read the Bible all the way through until my mid thirties. I have now read it five times and pray for the help of the Holy Spirit to help me understand and to apply what I am reading. My husband, Scott, who had a life changing encounter, has read the Bible at least ten times from beginning to end and so it is with great love that we want to share what is so significant for everyone to understand.
So here is my husband's post and I hope this helps you wherever you find yourself on this hot topic.
Genesis 9:13 "I set my rainbow in the cloud, and it shall be for the sign of the covenant between Me and the earth."
Open letter to all my friends and family that support the LGBT movement.
In the spirit of gentleness and humility I feel the need to express my position on these issues with love and respect.
First let me say that I love all people and love diversity. It has been wonderful living in Gwinnett County with its multitude of immigrants from around the world. I have made great friends with many diverse backgrounds. Over the years I have had many homosexual friends who I love and care deeply about. It’s not out of hate or the traditions of men that I stand opposed to the agenda of redefining marriage. Please let me explain my position…
As many of you know, in 2003, I had a life changing event occur when I made my profession of faith in Jesus, got baptized and filled with the Holy Spirit. The words of the Bible became alive and its instructions brought on radical transformation in my life such as no longer being held captive to ungodly behavior. I’ve been set free from the sin of not forgiving and bitterness toward others, pornography, southern pride and a long list of other sins. So knowing firsthand the transforming power of God’s word I must hold to its teaching above all else.
There are many misconceptions regarding the Bible and its teaching on same sex relationships and unfortunately there have been many in the church community with the wrong attitudes and approach to this subject. The following is my attempt to bring some clarity and understanding from a Biblical prospective on the issue.
The overall message of the Bible is one of liberation and freedom. The children of Israel were held in bondage, as slaves in Egypt. God frees them and brings them out but they had to walk in the wilderness 40 years with many trials and temptations before they could enter into the promise land. Jesus comes into the world to set people free from the bondage of sin. After being set free from sin people still have to live their lives with many trials and temptations before entering into Heaven.
If someone struggles with the temptation of same sex attraction it is not a sin. Just like any other temptation, it is only sin when acted upon. I know that many people who struggle with same sex attraction believe that they were born that way. The fact is that we were all born into a fallen world where we have within us from birth or have develop over time thought patterns that lead to sinful actions. In my own life, I practiced a long list of sinful behavior before coming to Christ. Now with God’s help I’ve been set free from practicing those sins over and over again. I still have temptations but with God’s grace He helps me overcome them.
Whenever the Bible addresses the subject of homosexuality it is always negative. There is not a single example of a homosexual relationship in the Bible that is viewed as acceptable.
Jesus confirmed the definition of marriage in Mark 10:6-8 ‘But from the beginning of creation, 'God made them male and female.' 'Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.' So they are no longer two but one flesh.’
Heterosexual relationships are actually secondary to the fact that God requires holiness above all. We see examples in the Bible of those who remain celibate because of their devotion to God.
Matthew 19:12 For there are eunuchs who have been so from birth, and there are eunuchs who have been made eunuchs by men, and there are eunuchs who have made themselves eunuchs for the sake of the kingdom of heaven. Let the one who is able to receive this receive it."
Jesus never affirmed people in their sin but He came to save us from our sin. As Dr. Michael Brown has stated, "He practiced transformational inclusion not affirmational inclusion". The message is 'come as you are and be transformed by the love of God and be set free from sin, no longer a slave to sin.'
Jesus said to the women caught in adultery ..."Neither do I condemn you; go and sin no more."John 8:11
The following verses show the seriousness and the eternal consequences of living a lifestyle out of God’s will.
Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God. 1Corinthians 6:9-11
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. Galatians 5:19-21
Jesus Said: "Not everyone who says to Me, 'Lord, Lord,' shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. Many will say to Me in that day, 'Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?' And then I will declare to them, 'I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!' Matthew 7:21-23
These verses address the issue of continuing with actions that are outside of God’s will. The consequence for this is exclusion from the kingdom of God. Thankfully, He doesn’t leave us without help. There are countless numbers of heterosexuals and homosexuals alike that have been able to turn their backs on lifestyles that were outside of God’s will. His promise to those who fully commit themselves to Him is that He will always provide a way of escape from any temptation that comes (1Corinthians 10:13). His grace that brings salvation will teach us to deny ungodliness and live righteously (Titus 2:11). He gives the Holy Spirit to those who obey Him and it leads and guides us into all truth (Acts 5:32, John 16:13).
There is a common misunderstanding regarding God’s laws. God chose the Jewish people to be his special people set apart from all the other nations. He gave them unique ceremonial laws related to the way they should eat, dress and do business as well as many other traditions. Most of these laws are not for all people for all times. God’s moral laws, like the ones related to sexual behavior are upheld in the New Testament and in some cases elevated to a higher standard by Jesus. So to criticize a Christian for being against the breaking of a moral law while he eats shellfish or has a shirt of mixed linen is a misunderstanding of the biblical text and teaching.
God never commands us to do something that we are not able to do. Change is possible with God’s help. This is my biblical understanding of this subject after much study. I know you can find all kinds of support and affirmation for same sex relationships from our society, media and even many churches. However, is it ok with God?
It’s not out of hate that I stand in opposition to same sex marriage but out of love for the homosexual and heterosexual alike. God offers a better way and is willing to help anyone who calls upon his name. We have all sinned and have not lived up to God’s standard but He forgives and transforms when you are committed to Jesus.
If you truly believe in diversity and equality for all than you must be willing to include Christians otherwise you are not showing love and inclusion but doing exactly what you stand against.
Jesus died for homosexual and heterosexual alike and He grants eternal life to all who commit their life to Him.
7/1/2015 08:19:24 pm
love the sinner, hate the sin...that's how i look at it :D
7/1/2015 09:26:41 pm
Everyone is tempted by something. Sexual lust, same sex attraction, alcohol, swearing, anger, bitterness, you name it.
7/1/2015 09:46:25 pm
This was good Biblical teaching, tempered with grace, just as it should be. And Christina, I automatically love people who are vulnerable. :-)
7/2/2015 02:07:33 am
By far one of the best exposes I've read on this extremely hot issue. Thank you for sharing your husband's thoughts. For one, I appreciate it.
7/2/2015 03:51:41 am
Very graciously and well said. I especially liked this comment:
7/2/2015 05:29:48 am
Well spoken and handled with such grace! And God bless you for your candor! I know this was probably a difficult post to write - but what a wonderful word! blessings!
7/2/2015 07:16:50 am
What a loving and concise explanation of the Biblical stance on this topic. What I love is how the focus is on how we all sin, we all struggle. This is no different than any of the that. It's the act and the belief in the lie that is a problem, and it's because God loves us and wants to protect us that he gives us all of these parameters. I am rambling and struggling to add to something that you and husband just spelled out so clear and profoundly so let me just say that I appreciate your heart and honesty. I'm sure this was not that easy to share.
7/2/2015 01:25:21 pm
I so appreciate the grace and love in this post... the vulnerability and braveness! (And how much do I love that you had your hubby guest post?)
7/3/2015 01:00:51 am
7/3/2015 07:29:30 pm
I like what your husband said about us all being born into sin. I hadn't thought about it that way before. I think people find it so easy to condemn a sin they are never tempted by, it is much harder to condemn sins that we know we struggle with ourselves. It makes them feel righteous somehow.
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