I appreciate this recent article posted on this website for taking a stand against homosexuality. I agree wholeheartedly that homosexuality is a sin. The Bible is very clear in its position in this regard. From the Old Testament Levitical law (Leviticus 20:3) to New Testament Pauline epistles (I Corinthians 6:9), there is no argument against that homosexuality is a sin against nature and against God.
Our world today has experienced a paradigm shift of even more evil. The recent decision to "fix" the Religious Freedom Restoration Act in Indiana was telling. The law itself had no reference to
homosexuality. The bill only was made to reiterate support an already existing law. And yet it lost.
President Obama has called an end to any attempt or therapy to reverse a sexual orientation. In
other words, he has made it illegal to counsel someone that what they are doing is sin. It seems the
tide has turned against us. Homosexuality seems to be accepted by the society-at-large.
One thing we Baptists seem to get twisted about is how to treat a homosexual. Jesus told us to love sinners and our enemies. How do we do that? We always repeat the slogan "Hate the Sin, Love the
Sinner." but what does it actually mean? I will be using the word "homosexual" to cover all non-
heterosexual sexual sins, covering all of the so-called LGBTQ.
1. Lead Them To The Lord And Disciple Them
Homosexuality is simply one of many sins Jesus can forgive. Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ has the power to save homosexuals from homosexuality! It just might be that a homosexual's lusts for the same gender will be one of the sins that would disappear when a homosexual becomes a born-again believer. If so, rejoice!
Whether the sin disappears completely or not, encourage them to attend a discipleship class, such as the Reformer's Unanimous addictions program. Reformer's Unanimous is attended by those who have any addictions, from gluttony to alcohol to drugs to lust. It is a Biblically-based program to get closer to Christ, rather than believing on oneself and a deceitful heart. If your local church does not have one, no matter, the point is, disciple them, somehow.
If you are a pastor or leader or one who has been in the faith long enough, it is an option to
disciple them yourself. Get them to be baptized by their own conviction. Get them to read the Bible
for themselves and pray. Make sure they attend every discipleship session, and every time the church doors are open. If they refuse to work on their homosexuality, focus on the "smaller" sins: lying, stealing, coveting, pride, and so on. While one sin may overshadow others externally, as sinners, we have many sins. But even more, focus on getting closer to Christ through His Word. Before you know it, his old lusts of the flesh will be replaced with new convictions.
We cannot eradicate this sin ourselves. We must rely on Him Who created our bodies, sexuality, and marriage. It may take fasting and prayer on our part and the homosexual's part.
2. Determine How To Handle Each Person Individually
As much as one wants to broadbrush every homosexual into one large homogenized group, we cannot if we want to claim them for Christ. He that winneth souls is wise (Proverbs 11:30), and we would be wise to study the demographics of the homosexual population.
There are some that are outspoken defenders of their sin. The gay lobby, the gay activist, the gay paraders, the media - these are the voices that ring out against us. To use a "heterosexual" analogy, they are the equivalent of the porn industry or prostitution defenders. It is their identity. There are those that have homosexual lusts and thoughts from time to time. They do not act on it, but they may have fear and confusion.
To classify every homosexual as a defender is inaccurate at best. Just as not all fornicators and
adulterers are outspoken and rabid, homosexuals can also be quiet, stealthy, or ashamed. This is not to lessen the sin, but to refine our method of reaching them.
We can crudely split homosexuals into three groups:
A. Identifying as a homosexual: These are those that have identified themselves as homosexual, and
are unashamed of it. They parade themselves and flaunt their sin. It is their lifestyle, and they
see no evil in it. This is usually what we think of when we hear of the word "homosexuals".
B. Struggling with homosexuality: These are those that have acted on or planning to act on their
homosexual desires. They may not identify themselves as homosexual, however, they have an addiction
to the sin. They may have shame, or are just quiet about it. Make no mistake, they are engaged in
immorality, as much as a heterosexual adulterer is engaged in sin.
C. Attracted to homosexual desires: These are those that have homosexual desires and attractions,
however, but have not acted on them. They probably do not identify as a homosexual or are
confused by the desires. It is a much, much larger group than both of Group A and B combined.
The point is, not everyone who has this sin is in Group A. Those in Group A, and to a lesser extent, Group B, must experience church discipline as both Groups A and B are actively committing the sin. Open immorality cannot continue in our churches. Those in Group B and Group C usually are ashamed to speak of their sin to get help, for fear of backlash. Those in Group B and Group C are rightly ashamed of their homosexual proclivities. If they want to change in Christ, you must have a willing and open ear. Listen.
We must identify in which group a homosexual resides in. Ask them questions. Do not load those questions with accusations. Use the answers they give you to win their soul effectively to Christ.
3. Do Not Have A Double Standard
Before one looks down on homosexuals, remember that lusting after the opposite sex is the same sin as lusting after someone with the same sex. Both that do commit adultery in their hearts. We cannot have a double standard.
Is it possible to be a "gay Christian"? Is that an oxymoron? I ask, is it possible for a
heterosexual adulterer, fornicator, porn addict, or someone who lusts after the opposite sex to be a
There are clearly Christians in Group C, as there are arguably many Christians who have heterosexual lusts. If you believe there are Christians that can sometimes or secretly fornicate and commit adultery, then it follows that there are Christians in Group B. If you believe there are completely hellion and backslidden immoral heterosexual Christians who prostitute themselves openly, then it follows that there are backslidden Christians in Group A. It is unlikely, however.
Those that claim to be saved in Group B and Group C sometimes do make fruit, despite the temptations. Some of those who has struggled with desires have remained celibate, or have married opposite sex spouses to stave off their desires. If we pride ourselves with standards that prevent sin, then actions like these should be commendable.
The Bible says in I Corinthians 6:9-11 that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God, those that are fornicators, adulterers, effeminate, and abusers of themselves with mankind. It also lists thievery, coveting, drunkards, revilers, and so on.
Such were some of you. Such were some of you! We have a tendency to pass over heterosexual sexual sins more than we do homosexual sins! This must not be so, brethren.
Church discipline brings up another issue. If we treat homosexuals engaged in sin one way, and yet treat better a heterosexual couple engaged in sexual immorality, it will sow seeds of our downfall. If we deliver the homosexual outside our church, we must deliver up the sinning heterosexual couple in adultery or fornication, as well.
If the homosexual repents, we must treat him as we would treat an heterosexual adulterer or fornicator that repents. Likewise, if we hold up those who have heterosexual lusts but have committed to celibacy or marriage by conviction, we should hold up the same standard on those who have homosexual lusts that committed themselves to celibacy and heterosexual, traditional marriage. Consistency is key.
If you have heterosexual sins and lusts yourself, repent. If you have committed adultery against your spouse, repent. If you have fornicated outside of marriage bounds, repent. If you have touched the opposite sex to inflame them, repent. If you have looked on a woman to lust and committed adultery in your heart, repent. Are you not the same as a homosexual for lusting and committing these sins?
In this issue, we cannot be hypocrites. We must be blameless ourselves. Our double standard will be our downfall.
4. Some Practical Actions to Show Love
If a homosexual was hungry, feed them.
If a homosexual was thirsty, offer them a drink.
If a homosexual was drowning, save them.
If a homosexual was lost, offer to help them find their way.
If a homosexual asks for prayer, pray for them.
If a homosexual needs help, help them.
The principle on how to love sinners practically should be evident and intuitive by those examples.
5. Withhold Actions That May Seem To Promote Or Participate In Their Sin
One would say, if we can do the above things, it follows that we should attend and celebrate gay
weddings because we love them, right? Right?
Attending a wedding means you approve of the wedding between two people. We do not approve sin, nor its celebration. In addition, it might be tricky when it is asked who would object to the marriage. It would be the same if a Christian was invited to attend a murder. We will love the person, but we will not participate in the sin.
This is why businesses that refuse to bake cakes for gay weddings should be allowed not to bake cakes. It is against their consciences to bake a cake, as if they were participating in the sin.
There are times when we need to judge with holiness, and there are times when we need to have grace. The Bible gives us a rule of thumb to use which. They who sin willingly despite knowing the truth must be judged harshly. Those are ignorant must first be taught. Rely on the Bible and the Holy Spirit.
Like a parent of a wayward child, to homosexuals, we can say, "You're wrong" and "I love you", simultaneously without contradiction. We must be firm in both statements.
(All emphasis is mine)
There is a difference between the "day of the Lord" and the "day of Christ".
In the Old Testament, the day of the Lord is God's wrath poured out on Israel. The NT expands it to the whole Earth.
In the New Testament, and specifically only Paul, reveals the phrase the "day of Christ". It is marked with a rejoicing for the saints. Wrath is not appointed.
Philippians 1:6 Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ:
Jesus delivered us from the wrath to come.
I Thes. 1:10 And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come.
We are present with Jesus Christ at His coming.
I Thes. 2:19 For what is our hope, or joy, or crown of rejoicing? Are not even ye in the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ at his coming?
Jesus Christ comes with all of His saints.
I Thes. 3:13 To the end he may stablish your hearts unblameable in holiness before God, even our Father, at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ with all his saints.
Jude makes a similar pronouncement:
And Enoch also, the seventh from Adam, prophesied of these, saying, Behold, the Lord cometh with ten thousands of his saints,
We are alive in His coming. If we are alive at His coming, and we are with Him at His coming, then we are raptured before He comes. The sense here is that we are coming with Him, not to Him. He gathers before He comes. We who are alive are not preventing those who are asleep from coming with Him, but they rise first.
I Thes. 4:15 For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep.
16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:
Cross reference Corinthians for the Rapture:
I Cor. 15: 51 Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,
52 In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.
We are going to meet Christ in the air and the clouds, not on Earth.
17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.
Paul does not use the day of Christ here, he uses the day of the Lord, along with wrath.
I Thes. 5:2 For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night.
Paul makes it clear we are exempt from the wrath.
I Thes. 5:9 For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ,
Paul then hopes our triune humanity is preserved until the coming.
I Thes.5:23 And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Onto the next book! The day here in verse 10 is the day of the Lord, not the day of Christ.
II Thes. 1:10 When he shall come to be glorified in his saints, and to be admired in all them that believe (because our testimony among you was believed) in that day.
Look at the verses beforehand. Remember, the Lord comes with all of His saints.
I Thes. 1:6 Seeing it is a righteous thing with God to recompense tribulation to them that trouble you;
7 And to you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels,
8 In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ:
9 Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power;
This is where it gets tricky.
Paul makes a distinction between His coming and His gathering of the saints.They are not the same thing.
II Thes. 2:2 Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him,
Paul says the day of Christ will come before the day of the Lord. Or else how can we comfort each other? In other words, he's telling Christians not to worry about the day of the Lord, as the day of Christ is coming before the day of the Lord.
2 That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand.
The day here in verse 3 is the day of the Lord, not the day of Christ, because the antecedent is not the verse beforehand, it is in the chapter before it. "As that" means "because".
3 Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;
The KJV is correct in saying the "day of Christ" rather than "day of the Lord". This is how the verse means in the KJV:
Do not be troubled by the day of the Lord (1:7-10), because ("as that") the day of Christ is coming.
Modern translations that change the day of Christ to day of the Lord because of their ignorance in grammar make the following translation mean:
Do not be troubled by the day of the Lord (1:7-10), because ("as that") the day of Lord is coming.
The following is not structured well, I will fix that in a future post:
1. Old Testament Salvation: Faith in what God said as shown by and resulting in works (Adam to Noah to John the Baptist, as shown by James, Hebrews Hall of Faith resulting in works. It's not faith automatically in the coming Son of God, but what specifically God said to that specific person, which included statements of the coming Son of God. For example, Noah was saved not because he believed specifically on Jesus the Messiah, but he believed God's pronouncement of the Flood, faith, and built an ark, works resulting in faith. Adam simply had to obey )
2. Before Jesus was on Earth: Faith shown by water baptism of repentance by John the Baptist
3. When Jesus was on Earth: Faith in His physical Person, and water baptism (his disciples baptized)
The believing dead on times before this went to Paradise, Abraham's bosom under the Earth (Lazarus and rich man)
The believing dead on times after this went to the Third Heaven, above the Earth
4. When Jesus resurrected but before the Pauline letters were written: Faith as shown by water baptism of repentance (Acts)
5. TODAY: Pauline letters written until the Rapture: Grace through faith, works need not to be shown, no water baptism needed (Romans and rest of Paul's letters)
6. In the Tribulation: Faith as shown through keeping the commandments and refusing the mark of the Beast (most like the ten commandments,
Revelation 12:17 And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.
22:14 Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.)
7. During and after the Millennium: Allegiance to the physical Son of God that can be seen. There is no faith in the Millennium or afterwards, as "faith is the substance of things not seen". This only applies to the Gentile nations who are left after the Tribulation. (refer to Old Testament prophecies of the Kingdom and the judgment of Sheep and Goats, a judgment of nations, not the Church)
I Corinthians 1:22
For the Jews require a sign, and the Greeks seek after wisdom:
Signs and Miracles and the Word (Wisdom)
1. Old Testament before the Law: God appeared Himself, with all the trappings of miracles (Creation, Flood, plagues, pillar of fire and cloud)
2. Old Testament Israel: God appeared to the High Priest in the temple and prophets did miracles
3. Intermission, Silent Years (Malachi-Matthew): No Biblical records of signs or miracles
4.. Gospels: Jesus showed miracles to Israel, and made exceptions to only two Gentiles (the woman and the centurion)
5.Pentecost: Tongues and other miracles primarily a witness to the Jews
6. Pauline Letters: Tongues and other miracles started to cease, being replaced by the witness of charity/love (I Cor. 13)
7. Once Revelation was written, and the canon set: Wisdom was fully written down
8. TODAY: The entire Bible spreading this current Church age: God's primary mode of showing Himself is through the Word of wisdom. Where the Bible is, it takes precedence over miracles. Once a society is saturated with the Word of God, miracles completely cease. That's one reason why formely "Christian" nations today turn atheistic and secular, once the Bible is plentiful, overt spiritual activity that can be seen ceases, and secularism is a threat. (2 Pet. 1:19) False science tries to replace godly wisdom (1 Tim 6:20)
9. The Rapture, Tribulation, Millennium: Signs and wonders, both holy and devilish, come back in full force primarily for the salvation of Israel, and to turn the Gentile nations into aiding Israel.