rainbow-flagLast week the Supreme Court ruled on two extremely important cases regarding the legalization of same sex marriage in America. Both of these rulings have strengthened the stance of gay marriage advocates and seemingly paved the way for the wholesale acceptance of gay marriage nation wide.

As a result I feel the Church is at an urgent moment and therefore it’s extremely important to address the issues of homosexuality and gay marriage at this time. Some would question my motives for addressing these issues. No need to question, here’s the reasoning behind my rationale:

1. The church needs clarity on this issue – Many are being swept into deception because of the lack of clarity in the church. It is the responsibility of Christian leaders to speak into the discussion and offer clear biblical grounding. ( I am going to post a few more blogs this week that work through the scriptures, offering biblical perspectives on these issues.)

2. Because of the lack of clarity, the church lacks conviction – We must bring the conversation back to the stable ground of truth rooted in the Scripture. From there, amidst many voices and much pressure, the church can find herself confident in love, standing on truth, secure in her convictions.

3. I want to equip believers, especially 18-30 year olds - While the shifting definition of marriage is unprecedented in human history, for many young people the current state of the world is all they’ve ever known. I want to equip believers with a biblical worldview so that we can stand confidently with tenderness and courage, meekness and boldness, in the face of opposition.

4. We must answer the unprecedented activism –  In our nation we are experiencing unprecedented pressure to embrace as normative what the bible identifies as sin. The church must answer this activism. The reason why I’m highlighting homosexuality over fornication or adultery is because of the activism.

Homosexuality has been practiced for many thousands of years; however, in no generation but this one has there ever been the push to redefine the institution of marriage as something other than between one man and one woman. Marriage and family are the bedrock institutions of any healthy society. Marriage is an institution that has been divinely created by God as a depiction of His very nature. The fact that this definition is somehow “up for grabs” in our time needs to be addressed.

Make no mistake about it, our right to differ is being challenged and vilified. The current status of this discussion is such that if a Christian expresses his disagreement with gay marriage, he is depicted as hateful. This demands a bold but tenderhearted response rooted in truth and love, declaring unflinchingly the biblical perspective on homosexuality and gay marriage. Having a different opinion has never been so assailed as it is on this issue. This is a moment for the church to humbly engage, stand up and declare the truth in love.

THE PROPER ATTITUDE FOR CHRISTIANS

In a spirit of brokenness and humility, I am calling believers to a proper heart posture toward those struggling with homosexuality and same sex attractions. Here are four steps.

1. Receive God’s heart for Homosexuals – In order to minister effectively to anyone, it’s important to understand their heart and mind. For this to happen we must pray and receive God’s heart for them. God needs to break our hearts for those struggling with homosexuality and fill us with His emotions and thoughts. Pray. Listen. And Pray some more. If you’re not broken over their state, it’s likely you will not address it with the heart and mind of God. Speak last, pray first and often, listening all the way.

2. Recognize many have been hurt by the church – If we imagine that Christians haven’t done any damage to homosexuals we are blind. We must take responsibility for the groups that have spewed hatred and genuinely apologize. It will likely take many conversations with those in the gay life to begin to rebuild trust because of the ignorance and reprehensible actions of many Christians.

3. Reach out with compassion – Christians must determine to understand the struggle those in the gay life face. From the desire to understand, we must reach out with compassion and love, offering friendship and care. I encourage Christians to constantly look for opportunities to form relationships with homosexuals in order to offer compassion and truth in love.

4. Resist gay activism with boldness – We must address gay activism boldly and confidently stand firm against it. There is a very aggressive gay activist agenda that is coming at us on many fronts: in education, athletics, social clubs(boy scouts), the medical field, and politics. To imagine you won’t have to address these issues is absolutely naïve.

REASONS WE MUST ADDRESS THESE ISSUES

As citizens of the Kingdom of God what is our responsibility?

Some would encourage silence saying, “Why can’t we just believe what we believe and allow others to do the same?” – meaning “Just leave it alone.” This is not only a fatal position for believers it’s actually in opposition to the clear teachings of Scripture.

1. Love compels us to speak the truth (Eph 4:15)- If you love someone you tell them the truth regardless of whether or not it’s popular. If someone is in danger, you act to help whether or not they believe in the danger. The fundamental key to speaking and acting is LOVE. Period.

2. We are called to be salt and light (Mat 5:13-16)- Salt preserves from decay. Light dispels darkness. It’s amazing that Jesus actually called the church the light of the world. The society may not like it, but it needs the church to uphold a standard of righteousness.

3. The church is called to disciple nations (Mat 28:18-20). Jesus commissioned His followers to preach the gospel in all the world calling everyone to follow His ways. Central to the issue of discipling nations is calling individuals to embrace Jesus’ standards and values.

4. The Church is the prophetic conscience of the nation. Martin Luther King said,  “The church is not the master of the state, nor the servant of the state, but the conscience of the state.” If the church remains silent, the conscience of the nation is silent.

We cannot continue to turn a blind eye to the issue of homosexual activism. We live in an urgent hour that requires boldness rooted in love. Its time that believers take responsibility for our compromise, repent of our lukewarmness, and with tenderness and boldness address this issue wherever and whenever God gives us the opportunity.

Finally, I want to extend an invitation to all who are struggling with sexual sin, including homosexuality, to experience the freedom available to you through the cross of Jesus Christ. Jesus came to earth on a mission of love to take the penalty of sin upon Himself that all who give their life to Him may experience freedom from bondage, and liberty in love. I’m inviting you today to know the life-changing power of the love of Jesus Christ.

69 Comments

  1. Richard norman

    Good stuff. This issue has been on my heart any or all info would be awesome.

  2. Eddie

    Nice article, but you should not assume that 1) people who are gay do not believe in god or go to church, and 2) they are struggling with their sexuality. You are correct that the church has done much to ostracize/alienate gay people from its ranks and have failed miserably in their attempt to understand. Ignorance stems from lack of understanding. It is too simplistic to refer to a gay agenda. The bottom line is that gay people have been told for years that they are unworthy and that somehow the fact that they were gay would mean that they were associate with pedophiles, murderers, those who engage in bestiality and the ilk. The truth is that gay people are as valuable, productive, educated, giving, and loving as another other group of people. The longer the church imparts the idea that being gay is worse than someone who lies, engages in adultery, steals, kills, etc, and fails to recognize that gay people are loved by god, the more ignorant the church will become. Ignorance always stems from a lack of understanding.

    • Billy Humphrey

      @Eddie,

      Thanks for your comment. I do believe understanding is key. I also agree that identifying one sin worse than another is not helpful.

      I definitely do not assume that everyone who is gay doesn’t believe in God or is personally struggling with their sexuality. I have talked with many people who are gay who believe in God and many others who would say they have no struggle with the fact that they are homosexual. On the other hand I have met many who are struggling with being gay and want a way out. This is who I am referring to.

      I’m not sure why referencing a gay activist agenda is too simplistic. There is clearly a gay activist agenda focused on forcing society to embrace gay lifestyle as normative. A cursory google search will bear this out.

      Thanks again for your comment. Blessings!

      • Robert.Mauro

        Left handed people aren’t the norm either. The church stopped killing them or ostracizing them years ago. Gay people ARE normal, even if not the majority (“the norm”). And your views are VERY damaging to others, no matter how politely you phrase it. I’ve got some dead friends who could explain it to you – if it weren’t for the fact that they’re DEAD from listening to “helpful” people who politely and nicely explained why they were sinners… because they COULDNT change who they were, they took the only path they felt was left to them.

        Deal with THAT truth before you continue your crusade against an activist movement you do not comprehend. All gay people want is equal protection under SECULAR law and the ability for the churches THAT WANT TO, to be able to marry them. But you are insisting on forcing your religious interpretations on ALL churches and people.

        Sorry for the caps, but I am tired of watching friends die, try or consider it, because of “helpful” people like you who don’t understand anything about this issue. Next time, stop being so self centered and actually go out there and talk to real people – and by that, I don’t mean “go preach to the choir” for confirmation.

        Respectfully, while still disgusted by the damage such actions as yours does,
        Robert

  3. Mike Ofstedal

    I think it is interesting how this issue seems to echo others. Progression of morals and society has been a good thing. If you were to replace the words “gay marriage” with “slavery”, I think your article would be still biblically accurate, but would sound completely ridiculous based on what secular societies have concluded about slavery. Have you ever thought of that? That you are using a centuries old dated text to try and dictate current social practices? And that it might not actually be all you think it is? Could you imagine writing this very article about slavery back in the 1500’s, and then reading it in heaven now? 500 years later? What would you have thought of yourself? Of your conclusions? Just wondering. I am trying to understand how others think.

    • Billy Humphrey

      @Mike, Thanks for your post. I definitely have thought through my position and beliefs.

      Two quick points: 1) The idea of a progression of morals is misleading. Surely you wouldn’t consider the global climate on slavery as a positive progression, i.e. 30 million slaves in the earth, 21 million of them are sex slaves. Approximately 11 million under the age of 16. This is an incredibly degraded state of affairs.

      2) The biblical position has always been in opposition to slavery. Don’t forget it was bible believing christians who led the abolitionist movements in England and the US. Slave owners twisted scripture to bolster their claims and were vehemently opposed by christians. The biblical position on homosexuality, fornication, adultery and all sexual immorality has always been the same, they are all considered sin, as is lying, stealing, & hatred.

      Thanks again.

      On Jul 2, 2013, at 5:10 PM, “billyhumphrey.com”

      • Kieran

        I am sorry, but this is a rather blatant oversimplification of the slavery issue. The Rev. Peter Gomes grapples with this issue in depth in his “”Why I Love the Bible,” as have many others in recent years (including Brian McLaren in his New Kind of Christianity), each citing more in depth, scholarly sources. The pro-slavery position claimed, with clear evidence to be backed by far more verses than the abolitionists, and that they were the more “Biblical” position on the matter of slavery. The Bible is highly ambiguous on the topic, freeing the nation of Israel from slavery while offering God-given sanction to the institution of captured gentile slaves a few breaths later in the same Torah.

        At the time leading up to the Civil War, the Slave-holding Christian Apologists argued quite effectively to be “Bible-Believing” and that the “progressive” Abolitionist Christians were the ones needing to rely on a less literal reading of Scripture in dialog with their innovative views on human rights counter to thousands of years of slave-holding Christian history. Gomes is quite incisive in his arguments on this issue, as well as the now largely forgotten Temperance Movement which was also viewed as unscriptural but still “right” in light of 19th Century impacts of alcoholism on the family. Gomes argues both political movements were ultimately decided not by the merit of their Biblical appeals, but by the success and failures of history (“God’s judgement” perspectives that became part of our national understanding of the Civil War, and the failures of Prohibition).

        Unless you hold to a Manichean, Old Testament-denying position, you cannot ignore the clear, disturbing commands to slaughter civilians and take slaves in war, given God’s clear blessing in the text. (Numbers 31:1-18, Deut 20:10-17, Judges 21, for just a few, 2/3 from the Torah). A simple “New Law/Grace” view does not solve the problem if one holds the entire OT, essp Torah’s revered Jewish and early Christian status, as the heart of God’s ancient Revelation to Moses, to be morally inerrant in every line. Sex slavery is included in those above verses and others- the violent “taking of wives” was a common practice in Torah-sanctioned warfare, generally the virgins after killing all others (except Herem holy war where all must be killed). Native American warfare in the colonial era, at least was often more humane, with white women captured by the Haudensaunee (Iroquois) and other nations often being free to choose another husband than her captor, and enjoying a degree of freedom and empowerment that led some to choose not to return to white society (an interesting era of history a colleague of mine at Mount Saint Mary’s College in NY is studying)

        While I am opposed to those who would lump modern religious detractors of LGBT rights
        in the same class of bigotry as Victorian defenders of slavery or Jim Crow racism, the fact remains both DO involve solid Biblical arguments that do not take a great deal of “twisting” to reach. Much as I support your own right to freedom of conscience, I also have to challenge this very revisionist reading of the slavery debate. While open bigots exist both then and now, my careful reading of history has shown that people we would today condemn on slavery genuinely believed God and the natural law of the Bible was on their side. To pretend otherwise is to deceive ourselves and fail to learn the lessons of history- that activists on any side of a debate may seem gravely mistaken on some issues in hindsight. This should inspire humility, which is also the best stance to begin approaching LGBT persons wounded, as you admit, by the church.

  4. Nina

    I tend to understand Mike’s point. My struggle is with differentiating homosexuality from adultery and fornication… the bible in fact lumps them all in as one in the same. It also states that in Heaven there will be no marriage. The New Testament actually emphasizes the spiritual intent of our hearts as transcending physical laws. My point is that there are so many examples in the Holy Scriptures that speak of love and faith and spirit being the ultimate rule by which to hang all other issues… So for me, I’ll err on the side of love and leave man’s laws (be they priests, pastors, or judges) to those they belong to…

    • Mike Ofstedal

      I agree with Nina. As long as those people choose to live within those rules, and they are not hurting anyone but themselves, and do not hurt those who cannot choose for themselves (children), they can live by whatever rules they please. If they want their rules to apply to everyone, then they have to openly debate why they think theirs should apply to all. In the court of public opinion, as people become more educated, they realize that “because an ancient book written in a barbaric part of the middle east says so” is not a very good reason to make all people follow a particular way of social conduct. There has to be more compelling, humanitarian reasons than that. If there are not, then it will not, and should not prevail.

      • Billy Humphrey

        @Mike,
        I think we are going to differ right here, because I don’t operate from a human-centered reason for being. I think of everything as originating from God. Therefore His desires and designs are to be honored and upheld. Thank God, no pun intended, He is love. Because then, the human state is one that is in response to a God who desires love and relationship with people. From this basis we can respond to His desires and live by His designs.

      • Nina

        Please, don’t misunderstand me! I completely and wholeheartedly believe that the Bible is the infallible Word of God! I’m altogether too simply stating that there are so many other scriptures that tend to suggest that this issue might just be more complicated and difficult to understand to the point of taking a clear and dogmatic position. Bless God, He sees our hearts and I Praise Him that He alone is judge! ♥♥♥

      • Joan

        Hi Mike,
        The amazing thing is that the word of God, the Bible, has prevailed in spite of every effort to discredit and destroy it. It speaks into the hearts of millions worldwide regardless of culture, race or creed. Read it with an open heart and see for yourself..

    • Billy Humphrey

      @Nina Actually the bible doesn’t lump them together all the time. Leviticus 18, for instance, differentiates it, as does Romans 1. I agree that love is our rule accept when it is in opposition to our love of Jesus, as he mentions in Matthew 10:37. Thanks for your comment. Blessings!

      On Jul 2, 2013, at 5:49 PM, “billyhumphrey.com”

      • Nina

        I’m sorry, I read all of Romans 1 and the entire chapter’s context actually does go on to show how every sin beginning with homosexuality leads to….. “And so, ………they were filled with every kind of unrighteousness, iniquity, grasping and covetous greed, and malice. Full of envy and jealousy, murder, strife, deceit and treachery, ill will and cruel ways. They were secret backbiters and gossipers, slanderers, hateful to and hating God, full of insolence, arrogance, and boasting; inventors of new forms of evil, disobedient and undutiful to parents, without understanding, conscienceless and faithless, heartless and loveless [and] merciless. Though they are fully aware of God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve to die, they not only do them themselves but approve and applaud others who practice them.”

        There are many Christians still struggling with many of these issues and also many homosexuals who do not. You tell me where we as Christians we are to take our stand and say to one or the other you may, but you may not, enter into marriage?? I’m genuinely asking, because I really want to know. My heart breaks to find such a paradox </3

  5. Nina

    It appears that the activism of these sinners (i.e. homosexuals, i.e. everyone) wanting to have equal rights under the government’s laws is the main issue:

    “Marriage and family are the bedrock institutions of any healthy society. Marriage is an institution that has been divinely created by God as a depiction of His very nature. The fact that this definition is somehow “up for grabs” in our time needs to be addressed.”

    This argument fails at a spiritual level, when we see how many Christian heterosexuals enter into marriage while still fornicating and committing adultery before, during and after multiple so-called marriages… How is it that any Christian can be equipped with any sort of clarity in order to take a stand with the proper attitude???

    p.s. I am the first to be entirely surprised by my own argument… just looking for answers.

    • Billy Humphrey

      @Nina,
      I am the first to agree with you that many Christians have not lived according to Jesus’ ways. The fact that they have not in no way nullifies Jesus’ designs and desires. Regardless of anyone’s failures, each of us is still compelled to live according to Jesus will. It is love that compels us to obey the Lord and call others to do the same. Whether some Christians have done a poor job of following is really immaterial to His desires.

      The way we can be equipped with clarity is by not looking firstly at others failures or even successes, but rather by looking at what Jesus calls His people to in the Scripture. That’s our first line of equipping. Many Blessings!

  6. Nina

    My point is that, this ruling that would allow homosexuals to legally marry neither nullifies Jesus’ design and desires…. We are all just trying to have some measure of hope and love, and failing miserably in this broken world. And, I know that Jesus is the answer, Jesus is the way… however, none of us, as sinners, are being denied equal rights while we are walking out our journey to find a better way (i.e. Jesus).

    • Billy Humphrey

      Just a quick reply because I’m short on time. The Scriptures are explicit about Jesus’ desires. They offer clear guidelines. Sexual immorality is specifically identified in opposition to His ways. Christians are called to encourage all the world to follow His ways. Since you’re a “bible believing” Christian I strongly encourage you to get clarity on the Scriptures, live by them and encourage others to do the same. And yes, love is always what compels us. Many blessings!

      On Jul 2, 2013, at 6:44 PM, “billyhumphrey.com”

      • Nina

        You see, this is why the secular world rejects your position…

        Why do you assume I need clarity on the scriptures?? Is it possible that you may need to study a little deeper and possibly go back to the original Hebrew and Greek in order to have a clearer understanding? I have been studying almost on a daily basis for my entire life to find these answers. I find that with answers come more questions. I am not unclear with the guidelines and examples of our Lord which we are to strive to live by… neither am I failing in encouraging by word and deed others to do the same. This issue is one of equal rights for human beings. It is not an attack on a Christian’s beliefs and in no way takes away our right to them.

        I look forward to the advice you would give on how any Christian (including myself) can have clarity with the right attitude to deny another human being common decency in this broken down society to which we are all striving to survive.

        Respectfully,

        One searching

        • Billy Humphrey

          @Nina I mean you no disrespect. As believers we are part of the Kingdom of God. As such we are to live by the values of the kingdom and call others to do the same. Because the concept of gay marriage is outside the values of the Kingdom we can in no way agree with it. This is the type of clarity I’m talking about, not one based on human sentimentality, but based on a love of the truth as it is expressed explicitly in the Scriptures.

          I’m definitely not encouraging anyone to deny another common decency. To the contrary, I’m calling for love, understanding, tenderness, care and compassion. That’s all in my original post. I’m also calling believers to stand firm in conviction, embrace the biblical view of marriage and call others to do the same.

          You are right, I could always do more study. I do study regularly and definitely the original languages. Praying all the way for God to give me clarity and revelation.

          In regard to the biblical standard not being relevant because some who claim Christianity have not lived righteously… An individual’s failure to follow God’s ways in no way nullifies the standard. Paul addressed this very point in Romans 7:5-25.

          Thanks for your comments. I pray we all come to a greater clarity on Jesus’ designs and desires for us. Blessings.

          On Jul 2, 2013, at 7:18 PM, “billyhumphrey.com”

  7. Scott Brown

    Where in the orignal text does it refer to homosexuals? In fact, isn’t it questionable as to what the original text actually uses for the word that is TRANSLATED as homosexual or gay?

    • Jamie

      Scott,

      When Paul said, “women burning in lust for one another and men with men commitning that which is shameful”, this is describing homosexual behavior which he refers to as “against nature”.

      Likewise in 1 Cor 6:9, Paul says “… homosexuals…shall not inherit the kingdom of God” he uses the word “Arsenokoite”. This was a word coined by Paul. Paul coined 179 terms in the New Testament. The terms do not, because they are original, significantly change the context of the verses they appear in. Nor is it odd that he would have coined this one, considering he derived it directly from the septuagint (Greek translation) of the Old Testament which was the translation that he and others used in that day…

      meta arsenos ou koimethese koiten gyniakos
      (Lev 18:22)

      hos an koimethe meta arsenos koiten gynaikos
      (Lev 20:13)

      In other words, when Paul adopted the term arsenokoite, he took it directly from the Levitical passages in the Greek translation which were forbidding homosexual behavior. The meaning could not be clearer: Though the term is unique to Paul, it refers specifically to homosexual behavior.

  8. Alberto Vega

    Honestly this is ridiculous. I believe Americans have lived very black and white and many Christians live in this bubble that everything biblical is the only way to live but if you can not physically hear from God as they did back then today makes me question the truth of the bible if God remains the same today tomorrow and forever. It’s crazy how when now in today’s generation things are changing the most we have to refer to a book rather than the TRUE voice of God. I believe in God 100% don’t believe scripture is accurate nor is a lot of it relaveant to our generation what people need most is love and understanding. I was a Christian for four years “sturggeling” with homosexuality never was cured as much as I wanted and beggggggged cause being straight is the easiest thing to be but honestly never changed today I’m more than happy and couldn’t feel more blessed. It’s hard to believe the God that created this earth would send more than 70% of the earth to hell due to sin and the other 30% to heaven. Sorry but Ill live by my conviction and heart that God placed in me not a book written and REWRITTEN thousands of years ago. Take care God bless.

    • James

      @Vega

      I can relate to anyone who says the bible is not relevant to today. Growing up I would read the bible thinking it contained nice stories but didn’t have anything to do with my life today. I thought that way until I hit rock bottom in my adult life doing things the way my conviction said they should be done.

      Keep doing things according to your conviction, homosexual or otherwise. If you really want to know the truth you’re going to hit a point where what you believe stops working for you. For me it was like the rug was pulled out from under my life and I started looking for answers. That’s when I realized how jacked-up I was (translated ‘sinner’ in bible terminology) so I surrendered on the inside and let go of having things my way. When I finally confessed verbally that Jesus is Lord, and believed in my heart that He was raised from the dead so I may live, THAT is when the bible lit up and began to speak to today.

  9. John

    @Billy, Thank you for being in the trenches on this topic and for following God’s call to begin leading the charge for the Church. I remember hearing you speak at CFNI a few years back and I just recently began listening to your podcasts. I might point out to Nina, Alberto, or Mike a few resources that have been helpful in understanding a little more. Frank Turek has written and spoken on this subject, and has a youtube video “nothing gay about it” in which he brings up many of the same discussions you are bringing up. Kirby Anderson wrote an excellent book called “A Biblical Point of View on Homosexuality” and has multiple blogs about this on his website probe.org. As you approach these resources, just ask God…Hey, show me what is truth here, He always answers when you seek him humbly.

    • Billy Humphrey

      @john Thanks for your comment & thanks for sharing those resources.

      Sent from my iPhone

      On Jul 3, 2013, at 1:29 AM, “billyhumphrey.com”

    • Nina

      Oh, how I wish someone could give me an argument that stands strong and unwavering! I was so excited to find the video you mentioned, only to once again be disappointed in the reasoning. Six parts to this video and one after the other only enforced my disappointment. I’m searching for some higher ground here; not wanting to endorse or reward destructive behavior and understanding that homosexuality is harmful in every way, be it physical, mental, spiritual, or societal. I’m not looking for agreements or concessions regarding the acts of homosexuality; they are quite clearly and obviously sinful and against Christianity; as are adultery, fornication, murder, theft, etc. The speaker, being a Dr., had me hopeful for the first few minutes that finally I might gain some answers to my dilemma. You see, I am a bible believing, Jesus following, totally sold out worshipping prayer warrior. I know scripture; I study and meditate on the Word daily. Yet this issue… this activism that has me searching… well, I’m still searching for some answers. I suppose from a purely Christian perspective the answer is clear: Homosexuality is a sin not to be engaged in (period). Problem is; what about secular society and those pesky government laws? What about all those who have not met my Lord, Jesus? Or, better yet, what about those who have recently heard about Him and would like to know him?? What of those practicing homosexuality and claiming Christianity? Do we draw a line for them and put up a sign that says, “Do Not Enter” your kind not allowed? “You only think that you’re Christian, but you’re mistaken, and btw, you will never be Christian until you renounce this one sin…” Don’t we have to take this stand for all sin? What does that then mean for all of us, sinners? By this standard, none of us can claim Christianity. Every one of us holds to some dysfunction in our heart (some sin) that we have justified, because it helps us to survive this world.
      There was one point in particular in this video that only served to bolster my wondering. That being the topic of divorce… This is a perfect example of a precursor to same-sex marriage. Why do we as Christians and upstanding citizens of a civilized society having a duty to one another allow divorce?! Why have we not taken our stand and prevented what God hates? Such a compelling case was made by the apologist in this video on the damages to society and children in particular because of this wretched divorce! And yet, it is forgiven, it is allowed; divorcees are welcome in our churches… How does one differentiate the damages of divorce (especially those from adultery) from the damages of same-sex marriage? I think, for me, this issue becomes complicated because there is no way to separate the mixture of Christian duty from common decency. We all know that divorce is nothing but damaging on every level; physically, mentally, spiritually, and socially. But, we also know that it would be barbaric to refuse a divorce and enslave one to a lifetime of an unhappy marriage. So, we allow it for decency’s sake. Dr. Turek speaks of moral law and duty to one another, he speaks of equal rights and benefits and then goes on to make a case that gives exception to heterosexuals and only applies the privilege of benefits to sinning heterosexuals arguing that we would be failing societal obligations and Christian morality to give the same exception and benefit to sinning homosexuals. This makes no sense to me. And, so, my quandary stands.

  10. Me’ira

    OK, I’m gonna share my input. I’m a little long winded, so get a cup of your favorite drink first and pull up a chair.
    I understand that God created male and female.. I also understand that marriage between a male and female Is Gods intent. I am in FULL agreement with God on this.

    What I understand to be the homosexual agenda (that is moving full force) is the right to be looked at and treated like any other human being, regardless of lifestyle. Having the same lawful rights as heterosexuals doesn’t seem to be asking for too much, to me. They are not asking us to embrace/like their lifestyle.
    If we see people as human beings with equal rights, it matters not then if one is gay or not. Human rights are human rights period.
    God never said that someone who practices a gay lifestyle is not worthy to be given lawful rights. God only stated that He did not create males to lust after males or women to lust after women. He said they won’t inherit the Kingdom of God…which means (they don’t understand what Christ accomplished for them and how He recreated them into His image as He became their humanity and ascended with them to the right hand of the Father, forever changing them within). Because they don’t know this they are living a false identity and thus missing out on accessing the Kingdom of God within them. Their mind is darkened. Like most of the Church…..STILL.
    God speaks only about Spiritual matters. He never states that they can’t have the same earthly rights as others. THAT’S the fight they are fighting for. So what if they want to get married? and have their partner on their insurance,etc. So what? So what if they want to adopt children. Let them love a child who feels rejected and alone.

    God has already taken full responsibility for their sins, just as ours. He has forgiven every sin ever committed or ever will be committed already on the cross. He’s forgiven and justified everyone already.
    There is so much more going on physically even from birth that we have no clue about. Genetics, hormone imbalances, etc. Boys being born with more female genes then male, and visa versa. Try to tell a boy that was born with more girl hormones, which causes him to think as a girl, dress like a girl and live tormented because nobody understands his struggle, that he is going to hell because he is delusional and not in Gods will.

    God understands more of whats going on, on a cellular level beneath the surface of this fallen world which has and is affecting birth imbalances,etc. Jesus came and took full responsibility for all this mess upon Himself. He changed everything and re-created each of us. We just don’t know or understand that yet.. Wholeness comes as we agree with Christs accomplishments in time.

    I am not going to press on any practicing gay person that they ‘need’ to change their desires and lifestyle to be included. I am going to love them because they exist and are my brothers and sisters….re-created in the image of God like me, through Jesus already. They just don’t know it yet. I am NOT going to treat this as US and THEM. Jesus did not do that. All are included. I want everyone to know THAT. In Christ there is neither male or female, Jew or Gentile, Greek or whatever. God says to see KNOW ONE AFTER THE FLESH. See everyone as a new creation and treat them that way.

    How about encouraging the Church to press into the finished work of the cross and get understanding about what actually happened there for ALL humanity, and then reach out in love to those who are walking in ignorance/darkness, speaking words of LIFE. Seeing people who practice the gay lifestyle as Jesus sees them (Saints and not sinners).. Can we see past the false identity they are walking in, and speak to them like Christ does? Can we see each other in the Church as Christ.does? Jesus cares more about our hearts than our lifestyles. He understands our ‘agendas’ and why we fight so much for our rights. He wants everyone to repent/change their minds about themselves and HIM. When ALL humanity understands the truth of the gospel and the healing that has already taken place at the ascension, ALL physical imbalances will be balanced. All ungodly desires will fall away. Every bad habit from the old man belief systems will disappear. There will not be anymore reason to ‘fight’ for human our rights. .

    Jesus has already given all humanity the same rights equally. We all get to make our own choices. That is our God given right. The down fall of america is not same sex marriage. The down fall of america is humanity not understanding what Christ has accomplished for them on the cross in His death, burial, resurrection AND ASCENSION. When we renew our minds to this, and become who we already are IN Christ…..ALL creation will rejoice because they have been WAITING for us to GET IT. Our liberation is there liberation. It’s all about renewing our minds to the truth of the gospel. Everything else will fall into place THEN

    So I encourage you to let go and not get so ruffled about homosexual agendas and just see as God sees. See the human heart. Understand the ignorance. See the King and Priest within each person walking in ignorance.and call their true identity forth.

    Preach the finished work ALL INCLUSIVE.
    SEE NO MAN AFTER THE FLESH

    .

    • Nina

      Now that makes sense! You bring me to tears! Thank you for stating it so perfectly ♥

    • Jamie

      Hey Me’ira,

      I can tell from your post that your a believer in Christ and I appreciate the time you took to give your thoughts here…
      However, from a christian perspective, some of your theology is very unorthodox…
      From what I gathered from your post you believe that

      1. Unbelievers “do not inherit the kingdom of God” in this lifetime but they are already saved (thus will enter the kingdom in the next life)
      2. Christ has forgiven every sin committed and ever will be committed by an unbeliever even if they dont repent in this lifetime
      3. All men are eternally saved because of Christ finished work on the cross

      If this is your stance then this is a version of “Christian universalism” and would have been considered a abherrant doctrine by the early church and the early church fathers.

      Answers to each:

      1. Jesus preached that the kingdom of God was already available in the life of a believer but he also spoke of a coming kingdom that believers enter into after death (heaven) and that will be consummated at the 2nd coming on earth. From you above response you believe that an unbeliever is currently not experiencing the kingdom of God but that since they are “saved” they logically will experience the “kingdom of God” after their death…

      Yet Jesus said those that wont repent would not enter the kingdom of God and be thrown into hell.

      Mark 9:47 And if your eye causes you to stumble, pluck it out. It is better for you to enter the kingdom of God with one eye than to have two eyes and be thrown into hell, 48 where ” ‘the worms that eat them do not die, and the fire is not quenched.

      Likewise Jesus also said that some men would be thrown out of the kingdom of God when they see Abraham, Issac and Jacob in the Kingdom of God. this could only happen in the resurrection because all three of these men were long dead and buried when Jesus is saying this. Thus not “all men” will eventually experience the kingdom of God.

      Luke 13:28 “There will be weeping there, and gnashing of teeth, when you see Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and all the prophets in the kingdom of God, but you yourselves thrown out

      2. Christ specifically said that not all sin would be forgiven

      John 9:41 Jesus said to them, “If you were blind, you would have no sin; but now you say, ‘We see.’ Therefore your sin remains.

      Matt 12:32 “Anyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man, it will be forgiven him; but whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit, it will not be forgiven him, either in this age or in the age to come

      The Writer of Hebrews said the same thing

      Heb 10:26 If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, 27 but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God.

      3. The truth of the scriptures is that unbelievers who do not repent will go to hell. This may not be a nice thought but it takes a great deal of gymnastics to maneuver around the scriptures to disbelieve it.

      Jesus said that we should fear God whom after he has killed has the power to throw the body and soul into Hell. THus “hell” is something that can only be experienced after a person is killed (dead).

      Luke 12:5 “But I will show you whom you should fear: Fear Him who, after He has killed, has power to cast into hell; yes, I say to you, fear Him

      Likewise, Jesus said that there would be men that would go away to eternal punishment and others to eternal life

      Matt 25:46 “And these will go away into everlasting punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”

      Even John in the book of revelations records many dead people whose names were not written in the lambs book of life who are to be cast into the lake of fire.

      Rev 20:12 And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God,[fn] and books were opened. And another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to their works, by the things which were written in the books…15 And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire.

      How do you rectify these passages if “all men are saved but just don’t know it yet”

      Blessings

      • Me’ira

        Jamie~Thanks for responding. I believe everyone must receive Christs free gift of salvation. If they don’t they will not enter into Gods Kingdom in this next age. Yes, I do believe in a literal hell as well. What I understand from the new covenant is that Jesus has taken responsibility for every sin past present and future. He has already redeemed all humanity back to God. The issue is that humanity has not reconciled themselves back to God, thus they do not enter the Kingdom of God now (reap the benefits of what Christs accomplished IN them). What Paul calls darkness, actually means ignorance.

        In regards to hell, I am studying more about that subject. I was taught ‘fire and brimstone’ but as I do word studies in scripture I am finding that hell may not be what the Church preaches AT ALL. It is a place of separation from Gods presence. That alone will make anyone regret their choices on earth. Revelation 21 speaks about how the gates of the New Jerusalem are always open….NEVER to shut. And people are walking past who can not enter in the city. Who are these people? When the New Jerusalem comes the Great White Throne Judgment has already happened. It’s heaven on earth. So who are these people walking around unable to enter the gates of the city. Unbelievers?

        I don’t think Gods wrath is what we have been taught. Wrath means PASSION, not anger as we on earth experience (know it to be). God is a fire of love. The fires of hell can very well be intense feels of Gods passion which causes an unbeliever to Gnash their teeth in regret of never choosing His free gift of salvation. Now separated forever from the presence of God. That is torturous enough!

        I do believe from scripture (the mystery revealed to Paul by Gods Spirit) that all people are saved now, redeemed, justified and sanctified. It’s GRACE! (Ezekiel 36:26, Gal 2:20, John 1:29, Heb 10:9,10; 1 Cor 1:30; 1 John 4:17, etc) Paul specifically says “See NO one according to the flesh” (see no one as a sinner). After the cross we enter into a NEW COVENANT.

        We must remember that Jesus was speaking to Jews who lived under the law of the OLD COVENANT. He spoke from that place. He even said there were many things He wanted to share with them, but they were not ready to hear it yet. That’s because Jesus hadn’t finished His work yet. They needed His Spirit to indwell them so they could understand Spiritual things.

        I do not believe in the new covenant there is a sin not covered by the blood of Jesus. He did a complete work. Rejecting the Holy Spirit is about receiving personal knowledge (which is experiential) of the truth of the gospel, walking in the new covenant and then hardening the soul and rejecting God. THAT is blasphemy (which is still forgiven) but that one must repent/change their minds back to truth so that they can reconcile themselves to God ‘again’. If they refuse….well that’s their choice, and they will not inherit the Kingdom of God in the next age. Maybe they will be the ones who walk outside the gate of the City Gnashing their teeth. I don’t think they will be tormented physically by demons sticking them with pitch forks forever.

        I don’t know…I am studying the Word now and thinking for myself and not believing the pastor is the expert. I want to be in awe of God and His mercy and loving kindness. I don’t believe God wants me to be afraid of Him. Perfect love casts out ALL fear. Those scriptures about fearing God need to be interpreted correctly.

        Anyways I hope that I cleared up any misunderstandings about what I believe about salvation and Gods Kingdom.

        ~Jesus justified all humanity
        ~Sanctified all humanity
        ~Re-created all humanity into His image/likeness/divinity (we are filled with His Spirit)
        ~Ascended all humanity with Himself to the Father. Giving us the keys of His authority
        ~Father is reconciled to all humanity
        ~Now it’s our job to partner with Jesus to reconcile all humanity back to Father
        ~We can’t do that until we understand the finished work of the cross and see ourselves and all humanity differently (not according to the flesh-sinner) but as Kings and Priests-Saints (regardless of their lifestyles and behavior)
        ~Speak THIS truth to them,and love them with out condemning.
        ~It’s the Holy Spirits job to convict
        ~It’s our job to love and boast about the finished work of the cross

        I know of a practicing homosexual that received love from a Christian for the first time. The christian excepted him, did not preach to him, didn’t point out his ‘sin’, developed a friendship, cared about his soul, loved him and spoke life to him. Shared the finished work of the cross and his inclusion with the Church (he felt separated because of the church’s ignorance). When this man understood that Christ was ALREADY within Him and that God his Father was ALREADY reconciled to him and not angry at him or judging him (like the church does), this man was able to draw himself closer to Father God and meditate on these truths and receive Gods love for the first time. He opened up his soul to Gods love, and bit by bit this man was transforming from the inside out and literally his desires changed. He had no desire for men anymore. He experienced metamorphosis just by believing the finished work of the cross for him. His mind was changed by love. His repentance came easily as he basked in Fathers love, seeing himself in the NEW COVENANT….not the old of Do’s and Don’ts, fire and brimstone, fear based religion. He began to see himself One with Christ, full of Gods Spirit beautiful, valuable and deeply loved. Now he can reach other homosexuals with this magnanimous truth with gentleness. It’s the kindness of God that brings others to repentance.

  11. Joey

    @Billy,

    Great article! We share the same view on marriage…it’s a sacred covenant and a picture of the gospel of Christ and the church that is to be between a man and woman.

    Unfortunately, homosexuality is already acceptable in our country. It seems like there is resentment building up in the gay community toward Christians as they are turning this into a modern day civil rights movement, which is silly as sexuality is nothing like one’s race.

    I have gay friends who say they don’t care about marriage, but want the rights that come along with it. They even agree it’s a religious act and don’t even want to get married in a church. Would it be a fair, healthy compromise to allow all the same rights and leave the sacred covenant of marriage out of it? By that I mean offering the same rights through a civil union.

    This movement seems to be unstoppable…and I feel like meeting somewhere in the middle could help mend the deep wounds the gay community feels and improve their relationship with Christians.

    With all this being said, I definitely do worry about the future of our great country. But the direction we are headed is inevitable anyway it seems…

    Thoughts?

    • Ash

      Joey,

      I love your desire to mend the deep wounds christians have given the gay community. I disagree with meeting somwhere in the middle because our American Government should reflect the laws of the Kingdom. As an American citizen I am in anguish over the state of our country with you. Although, I do have to remember that when I accepted Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior, I became an Ambassador for His kingdom. My citizenship in the Eternal Kingdom of God supercedes my American citizenship. God’s laws are above all and have the best interest of all in mind. We know this because we serve a God that proclaims Himself as merciful and gracious, patient, abounding in goodness and truth, keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity, transgression and sin, by no means clearing the guilty… As I look forward to the Day our Eternal Kingdom comes in fullness, my joy and love for others compels me to proclaim the good news to all, that we may reap the many gracious benefits together. My King does not waiver on His values and as His Ambassadors neither should we. Your proposal runs a high risk of misrpresenting Jesus’ Kingdom values and moral laws. A band-aid approach will not cover the wounds we have caused. We must ask forgiveness from the gay community and humbly speak the truth in love.

      At the surface the “gay marriage agenda” appears to be about equal rights for all Americans but if the agenda is successful it will aide in misleading generations in open rebellion against God without repentance. Sending souls to eternal condemnation. These souls will be the children of our family and friends. The thought of this pains me deeply. We must pray with urgency my brother. If we pray I have confidence God will move and bring revival to our great country.

  12. John

    @Me’ira
    Hey just wanted to see if I could clear some things up. Some of the things you stated seem to contradict some Christian doctrine.
    ~Jesus justified all humanity..(We are justified by faith. While Jesus blood was the propitiation for the whole World’s sins no one is justified until they accept him as their Lord and Savior.)
    ~Sanctified all humanity… (Sanctification is the Christian walk that we go on post justification. Therefore, not all are sanctified)
    ~Re-created all humanity into His image/likeness/divinity (we are filled with His Spirit)….(no one has His Spirit living inside of them until he comes in after we are justified)
    ~Ascended all humanity with Himself to the Father. Giving us the keys of His authority..( I’m not sure what you are saying here)
    ~Father is reconciled to all humanity…(If He is reconciled to all humanity then why do we need to accept Him or partner with Jesus to reconcile all back to the Father)
    We are not seen as Saints until we are justified before the Father. Till then are works are seen as filthy rags by Him.

    Maybe I didnt fully understand what you meant by all these statements so this might be for no reason, but I wanted to make sure we got some clear doctrine in here.

    • Cat

      I am not Me’ira but am on the same page as her. Consider that Jesus is our Sanctif 1Cor.1, I think. Consider that God was in Christ reconciling the Cosmos to Himself 2Cor 5:19 and around verse 13 says to see no man after the flesh. Rom 5 declares that we were ALL (it says ‘many’ but the same ‘many’ in first part of verse is same ‘many’ in 2nd part)universally plunged into condemnation, etc thru 1st Adam and then All plunged into Life and Justification thru Last Adam ( see verses 12-21 if u r really interested. The planet was rewired… Hosea 6 says, …after 2 days he will revive US (humanity-not just Jesus) and on the 3rd day He will RAISE US UP. Rom 6:6 says WE (humanity) were Co-crucified with Christ ,co-buried and Eph 2:6 Co-Seated w/ Christ. Jesus’ preaching was the law on steroids and was transitional. Paul was given the Rev of the GOSPEL by Jesus Himself. Paul’s words ARE the words of Jesus. See old testament and Mat, Mark, Luke, Jn, etc thru the Lens of Paul. he preached Grace.

  13. Chris

    Billy, after hearing your message on Sunday morning ,I just want you to know as a mother to a son, just how proud of you I am and your courage to give this message from your heart with much study and humility…I read Ephesians Chapter 2 which continues to remind me of all of our vulnerability to sin and what love God has for us in calling us out from sin , and into intimacy with Him….

  14. Norris Person

    Homosexuality is no more a sin than all of you Christians getting a haircut, shaving, eating shellfish, wearing a shirt made of more than one material…don’t try to condemn one part of the Bible if you’re not going to follow the entire thing.

    • Billy Humphrey

      @Norris, Thanks for your comment. You may want to read the two posts following this one that address the very issue you’re mentioning. Thanks again.

      On Jul 4, 2013, at 8:20 PM, “billyhumphrey.com”

  15. Kathy Baldock

    1.The church needs clarity on this issue – there are many of us, who do identify as Christian and take our faith just as seriously as do you who also believe the texts that you use to condemn an entire community of people (and those that love them and align with them over this issue) are not only culturally bound, but not about people with a same sex orientation AT ALL. The concept was utterly unknown.

    2. Because of the lack of clarity, the church lacks conviction – many of us are TRYING to bring the conversation back to the roots of the faith while others have added an imaginary 11th commandment.

    3. I want to equip believers, especially 18-30 year olds – so do I– by investigate what Christian marriage IS and is NOT. IT is NOT Part A into slot B. It is a reflection of the covenant the Christ has with the church. Two people of the same sex most certainly form a reflective covenant.

    4. We must answer the unprecedented activism – the activism you seek to control is the cry against oppression. If you do not see it as such, then sir, you are indeed part of the problem. Go to Isaiah 58. You are with the ranks who wonder why it is not going your way, the way you THINK God should be doing it. FIght oppression and injustice and you walk more closely to HIS path.

    PART TWO:
    1. Love compels us to speak the truth (Eph 4:15)- make sure it is God’s truth and if the person to who you are speaking has another revelation of God’s Word– yours in NOT higher. We each have a “God story”– that is theology– to believe yours needs to be theirs is sheer arrogance.

    2. We are called to be salt and light (Mat 5:13-16)- when your standard of righteousness causes destruction to others– it is not God’s righteousness, it is yours.

    3. The church is called to disciple nations (Mat 28:18-20). You don’t get to call anyone to righteousness, especially if it is your version. You get to be a light and God does the rest. It is a narcissistic belief that says YOU have it right and they must follow how you envision it. Honor others and their paths. God REALLY is in the House. Billy can sit down and rest.

    4. The Church is the prophetic conscience of the nation.– Not when the message is not based in love it is not. If you lived and looked like Jesus, people can’t resist the real thing, especially those on the edge.

    Listen more to LGBT Christian and talk and judge less. And here young Billy is your chance– this coming week, right there in Atlanta , will be a gathering of over 300 LGBT Christians at Pastor Randy Morgan’s New Covenant Church down in the gayborhood. GO. Be brave and GO and LISTEN and ask the Holy Spirit to speak to you.

    Many that will gather there are my friends. You will see an AUTHENTIC moving of God that you deny exists.

    It will go on for several sessions. If you want to MAKE SURE you have this assessment of yours right before you continue the damage, then go. I contend that you are blind to what God is doing and fully without your consent, understanding or permission.

    I would be there but have opted to stay home and finish writing a book directed to the conflicted Christians who KNOW that your message is NOT God’s.

    Go see and meet the Holy Spirit in his LGBT children then do as Paul did — sit down, listen and learn and STOP this destruction waged on HIS other children.

    • Frank

      Pt 1

      1. All homosexual behavior is all contexts is sinful.
      3. Since male-female unions (marriage) is a representation of Christs union with the church, SSM is a rejection of that.
      4. There is no justice in supporting, affirming, condoning, celebrating or remaining silent over sinful behavior.

      Pt 2

      1. Gods Word is the final authority on Gods Will. Homosexual behavior is a sin.
      2. There is no salt or no light in supporting sinful behavior
      3. See #1
      4. There is nothing loving in supporting, affirming, condoning, celebrating or remaining silent over sinful behavior.

      All “movement” is not from God. Wise up!

      • Kathy Baldock

        I have, thank you.

      • Kathy Baldock

        and Frank, I THINK if you were not hiding behind and icon, you might be a bit less abrasive. My experience tells me that those that hide and not worth very much effort in these forums. Come out, come out and have the integrity to put a name to your statements.

      • Frank

        I’m Frank. Very telling that you ignore the content and focus on something else. There is no wisdom in that, Thanks for the confirmation.

  16. Sally Rothstein

    Take your gay-bashing, kill-the-Jews Bible, stick it down your throat and choke on it and then wash it down with Jesus Freak Kool-Aid.

  17. William Rhea

    So glad I won’t be spending eternity around Billy Humphrey. Your pancakes suck too.

  18. Steven

    I realize that those who do not believe that the Bible is the infallible Word of God will not be impacted by the following, but hopefully any who considers themselves believers will give proper weight to the Word of God. In both the Old Testament and the New Testament, God makes crystal clear His position regarding the practice of homosexuality. I encourage everyone to read the following verses, as if for the first time, and ask, “Is it possible that the God who authored these passages endorses homosexual marriage?”

    Gen 2:21-25 So the LORD God caused the man to fall into a deep sleep; and while he was sleeping, he took one of the man’s ribs and then closed up the place with flesh. (22) Then the LORD God made a woman from the rib he had taken out of the man, and he brought her to the man. (23) The man said, “This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called ‘woman,’ for she was taken out of man.” (24) That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh.

    Lev 18:22 “‘Do not have sexual relations with a man as one does with a woman; that is detestable.

    Lev 20:13a “‘If a man has sexual relations with a man as one does with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable.

    Mat 19:4-6 “Haven’t you read,” he replied, “that at the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female,’ (5) and said, ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh’? (6) So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.”

    Rom 1:26-27 Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. (27) In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.

    Gen 19:5-7 They called to Lot, “Where are the men who came to you tonight? Bring them out to us so that we can have sex with them.” (6) Lot went outside to meet them and shut the door behind him (7) and said, “No, my friends. Don’t do this wicked thing.
    Jud 1:7 In a similar way, Sodom and Gomorrah and the surrounding towns gave themselves up to sexual immorality and perversion. They serve as an example of those who suffer the punishment of eternal fire.

    1Co 6:9-10 Or do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitues, nor homosexual offenders, (10) nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.

    1Ti 1:9-11 We also know that the law is made not for the righteous but for lawbreakers and rebels, the ungodly and sinful, the unholy and irreligious, for those who kill their fathers or mothers, for murderers, (10) for the sexually immoral, for those practicing homosexuality, for slave traders and liars and perjurers–and for whatever else is contrary to the sound doctrine (11) that conforms to the gospel concerning the glory of the blessed God, which he entrusted to me.

    • Robert

      The reason many don’t believe that the Bible is the infallible word of God is because it IS NOT. The Earth isn’t flat. Nor is it 6,000 years old. Nor would any deity worth worshipping demand stoning people to death (or killing others via other means) for ridiculous things (shaving one’s face, eating shrimp, wearing socks (cotton/poly/elastic blend), etc).

      As for 1Ti 1:9-11, since all of us are sinners, then that applies to all of us.

      Lot’s story is a sick story about him trying to whore out his kids because of INHOSPITALITY. I wonder what else Lot did… did it have something to do with having sex with his daughters?

      That aside, you forget much, like spinters and planks and eyes. And all of Jesus’s teachings.

  19. Steven

    @Nina

    Regarding your questions, “Problem is; what about secular society and those pesky government laws? What about all those who have not met my Lord, Jesus? Or, better yet, what about those who have recently heard about Him and would like to know him?? What of those practicing homosexuality and claiming Christianity?”:

    If we care about those in our nation who do not know the Lord or follow His ways, then we will strongly oppose laws that promote unrighteous behavior. Throughout both the Old and New Testaments, God has declared that obedience to His ways in a given nation results in blessing from Him upon that nation, but disobedience to His ways in a given nation results in judgment for that nation. The following are just a few passages that demonstrate this fact.

    Pro 14:34 Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin condemns any people.

    Lev 18:27 for all these things were done by the people who lived in the land before you, and the land became defiled.
    Lev 18:28 And if you defile the land, it will vomit you out as it vomited out the nations that were before you.

    2Ch 7:14 if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.

    Isa 26:21 See, the LORD is coming out of his dwelling to punish the people of the earth for their sins. The earth will disclose the blood shed on it; the earth will conceal its slain no longer.

    Jer 5:7 “Why should I forgive you? Your children have forsaken me and sworn by gods that are not gods. I supplied all their needs, yet they committed adultery and thronged to the houses of prostitutes.
    Jer 5:8 They are well-fed, lusty stallions, each neighing for another man’s wife.
    Jer 5:9 Should I not punish them for this?” declares the LORD. “Should I not avenge myself on such a nation as this?

    Rom 1:18 The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of people, who suppress the truth by their wickedness,

    Col 3:5 Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry.
    Col 3:6 Because of these, the wrath of God is coming.

    Eph 5:3-12 But among you there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality, or of any kind of impurity, or of greed, because these are improper for God’s holy people. (4) Nor should there be obscenity, foolish talk or coarse joking, which are out of place, but rather thanksgiving. (5) For of this you can be sure: No immoral, impure or greedy person–such a person is an idolater–has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God. (6) Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of such things God’s wrath comes on those who are disobedient. (7) Therefore do not be partners with them. (8) For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light (9) (for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness, righteousness and truth) (10) and find out what pleases the Lord. (11) Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them. (12) It is shameful even to mention what the disobedient do in secret.

    Rev 18:4 Then I heard another voice from heaven say: “‘Come out of her, my people,’ so that you will not share in her sins, so that you will not receive any of her plagues;
    Rev 18:5 for her sins are piled up to heaven, and God has remembered her crimes.
    Rev 18:6 Give back to her as she has given; pay her back double for what she has done. Pour her a double portion from her own cup.
    Rev 18:7 Give her as much torment and grief as the glory and luxury she gave herself. In her heart she boasts, ‘I sit enthroned as queen. I am not a widow; I will never mourn.’
    Rev 18:8 Therefore in one day her plagues will overtake her: death, mourning and famine. She will be consumed by fire, for mighty is the Lord God who judges her.

    • Nina

      @Steve
      Well I appreciate the infallible Word of God above all else, I think we all are VERY familiar with scripture and can equally list many more… Nevertheless, I’m not sure that you actually read through my entire comment, because of your answer:

      “If we care about those in our nation who do not know the Lord or follow His ways, then we will strongly oppose laws that promote unrighteous behavior. Throughout both the Old and New Testaments, God has declared that obedience to His ways in a given nation results in blessing from Him upon that nation, but disobedience to His ways in a given nation results in judgment for that nation.”

      This statement completely ignores my comparison of this issue with that of divorce. Divorce is also “unrighteous behavior” is it not? Do we not have the divorcee in our churches? Will you now argue that divorce is not a sin? What of the specific type resulting from adultery…? Do we as pastors need to take a stand to distinguish between the semantics of cause and culpability before we can accept those re-married individuals into our churches?

      I’m sincerely searching, but your premise for the not so few scriptures you cited falls flat… I’m curious what you would say to the issue I raised of “decency’s sake” concerning what we already allow with divorce.

      • Steven

        @Nina

        Thanks for your thoughtful response. You are right that I did not address your specific concern on the issue of divorce, so I will do so now.

        Yes, divorce is an “unrighteous behavior.” No, I definitely would not argue that divorce is not a sin (unless the person’s spouse committed adultery). Do pastors need to take a stand on divorce? Absolutely. Should pastors determine cause and culpability before accepting re-married individuals into our churches? If we are talking about those coming to visit a church and listen to a message, then no, everyone should be allowed, including the adulterer and the practicing homosexual. If we are talking about being accepted in as a committed member of the body, then I believe that pastors do have a responsibility to address known, ongoing sin issues within the body. Otherwise, Paul would not have written instructions such as:

        1Co 5:1-2 It is actually reported that there is sexual immorality among you, and of a kind that even pagans do not tolerate: A man is sleeping with his father’s wife. (2) And you are proud! Shouldn’t you rather have gone into mourning and have put out of your fellowship the man who has been doing this?

        1Co 5:11-13 But now I am writing to you that you must not associate with anyone who claims to be a brother or sister but is sexually immoral or greedy, an idolater or slanderer, a drunkard or swindler. Do not even eat with such people. (12) What business is it of mine to judge those outside the church? Are you not to judge those inside? (13) God will judge those outside. “Expel the wicked person from among you.”

        Just because the church as a whole has not taken a stand on divorce does not mean that is the right direction to go. From what Billy said in this series, I imagine that he does not consider homosexual activity any greater a sin than adultery or divorce. However, the law that has just been changed in our country due to the ruling of the Supreme Court is not about adultery or divorce, but about homosexual marriage. That appears to be the reason he wrote about homosexual marriage at this time. If I am mis-stating his position, I’m sure he will clarify.

        Many blessings to you,
        Steven

  20. Steven

    @Robert

    Many blessings to you! I pray that your eyes will be opened to the God who loves you enough to die for you. I mean this with all sincerity and I will be praying for you.

    • Robert

      My eyes are open, NOR do I need your condemnation-couched-as-prayer. In doing so, you have already stated in those few sentences that you think there is something wrong with me and my belief in God. You have judged me in the harshest way. Reflect on yourself – not me.

      Robert
      Minister – UCC

      • Billy Humphrey

        I hoped that the conversations people would have here would remain civil and respectful. I think we’ve unfortunately moved beyond that. I guess that’s why most blogs have a comments policy. Looks like, I’m going to have to institute one.

        I don’t have any desire to facilitate a place where people disrespect one another. But I have hopes that people can share opposing views with respect, kindness and compassion.

        @Robert, Since you’re a minister, I’m assuming you value meekness, kindness, gentleness, etc… I’m asking you, and everyone else, in a spirit of meekness, if you desire to comment here, please be respectful and considerate of others, extending grace to those who have a differing view.

        1Co 13:4-8 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. 8 Love never fails…

        My hope is, that at least those who call themselves Christians, can generously extend the basic tenets of love to one another.

        Thanks.

        • Robert

          Hi Billy, it is odd that you single me out, when I denigrated no one. Perhaps you missed a few posts. I do not accept prayers-as-condemnation, which is exactly what Steven did. He stated, in his implication, that my understandings are flawed to the point I know neither Jesus, nor the Bible, nor Christianity – and thus am not saved, graced, nor worthy of consideration for heaven – and will “pray for me” to reach his point of enlightenment.

          There are HUNDREDS of sects of Christianity – and the reason is that NONE of them agree on everything. I do not denigrate others for having a different interpretation of Christianity – I let them find their own paths. Nor do I declare them wrong (above, I simply stated known facts as to places *the Bible* IS wrong). I am not God, nor do I pretend to be, thus I do not claim to have the ultimate knowledge of what the scriptures mean – nor bash my interpretations over other peoples’ heads in such a condemning manner. Nor do I tolerate those who claim to be Christians denigrating others (including myself) by misusing the Word of God.

          Too much harm has been done in this world because people didn’t speak up. Witch burnings, beating or killing left handed people (“mark of the devil”). Crusades for centuries. Slavery. Women’s rights. All done in the name of God. Think how wonderful it would have been if more people stood up and said “That isn’t right! That’s not what Jesus taught!”

          And calling for others to be silent when they have an opposing point of view – while cheering on “the choir” – well, that doesn’t sound very Christian either. On this page, where it is largely “the choir”, I’d expect those “lesser ones” being denigrated would be the ones you defend – as Jesus taught.

          Respectfully,
          Robert

          • Billy Humphrey

            Robert,

            Did I ask you to be quiet? Maybe re-read what I just wrote?

            I simply appealed that we respond to one another in love, believing the best etc…

            I addressed you specifically because you identified yourself as a minister. So I’m appealing to you on that basis.

            I may be missing your intended tone, but it sounds very confrontational, judgmental, and defensive. Forgive me if I’m misreading that…I’m truly trying to hear the “respect”.

          • Robert

            I see… what you heard was a form of respect I call “honesty” – for the reasons noted.

            Respect isn’t “pretty words when someone denigrates you”, nor is it “I’ll use pretty words such as ‘I’ll pray for you’ to denigrate you – because that makes it ok”.

            The higher form of respect is indeed being honest and open with our fellow human beings… our fellow brothers and sisters on this planet. One of the biggest forms of disrespect is to hide denigration and condemnation behind pretty words. ;-)

            And I find the best way to “minister” is to be true and to be honest. People understand that a lot better than fancy words (not accusing you of such – discussing what *I* feel is an issue with various sects of Christianity). Nor pretending to be more than I am – I am human – no more or less.

            Perhaps now you understand me and what I meant a bit better.

          • Billy Humphrey

            I accept that. It does help me to hear your tone a bit more.

            I wonder if Steven was being honest or dishonest. I guess only he and God know. Hopefully He was being honest.

            In all of this, I remain hopeful, trusting that truth will prevail. And wherever I lack understanding I’m trusting that God will reveal truth to me. (Phil 3:13-15)

          • Robert

            Yeah, I am kinda “no nonsense” in words… text or vocally. Works a lot better in person where one can look me in the eye and read my body language. :-/

            Perhaps too many years of working as a programmer… or too little coffee… or too much coffee (is that possible?). ;-)

          • Billy Humphrey

            I totally agree. Which is why I prefer personal dialogue as well.

            In all this I do know for sure… too much coffee is NOT possible :)

            Blessings to you!

          • Robert

            Blessings to you as well, brother. And yes, I too think I have come to that conclusion (about coffee). :-)

  21. verberat

    There is nothing wrong with encouraging the acceptance homosexuality and bisexuality in society. It certainly won’t hurt anyone. It should be seen as normal and equal to heterosexuality, because it is! A huge benefit to society is that same-sex couples can adopt babies to give them a loving home and family.

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