Recently a Michigan congregation had to answer that question. A lesbian, married to a lesbian and expecting a child, wanted to serve a denominational church as an intern. The pastor’s words, in a letter to the congregation, were: “Only one verse in Scripture discusses this and it’s in the Old Testament”. Based on that, the congregation voted in favor of the intern. Sadly, the pastor’s guidance was not true. Even sadder, the congregation was biblically unaware. What about you? If you were a member of this congregation, would you know the Bible well enough to make a God-desired voting decision or to speak up with facts? Think about this:
God created every person on earth and gave each one gifts to fulfill a purpose to serve Him (Psalms 139:13, Isaiah 44:24, Jeremiah 1:5, Galatian 1:15). He also gave each a free will and told us in I Peter 5:8 that “the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour”. So, we live in a world of free will and temptation. In creating our world, God established guidelines and requirements. Deuteronomy 13:4 says, “It is the Lord your God you must follow, and Him you must revere. Keep His commands and obey Him, serve Him and hold fast to Him”. And Jesus said, “Why do you call me ‘Lord, Lord and not do what I say?” (Luke 6:46). Romans 2:13 says, “For it is not those who hear the law who are righteous in God’s sight, but it is those who obey the law who will be declared righteous”. Finally, Romans 6:12 says, “Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its evil desires”. Considering all of the above how does God feel about homosexuality and Christianity?
First, God loves every person He created, including the homosexual, and He requires us to love all His people. But “love” does not require us to go against God’s Word or be led by a pastor/priest who doesn’t know that Word, as is true of the Michigan pastor. There is not just one passage regarding homosexuality in the Bible. In Leviticus 18:22, God says, “Do not have sexual relations with a man as one does with a woman; that is detestable” and “both of them have done what is detestable. They are to be put to death; their blood will be on their own heads” (Leviticus 20:13). People say, “Homosexuals were born that way”. The Bible says that isn’t true. Romans 1:24-32 tells us that “God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity….they exchanged the truth of God for a lie….and received in themselves the due penalty for their error. Although they know God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them.” What happens to homosexuals, then, who don’t listen to God? I Corinthians 6:9 says, “Do you not know that wrongdoers will not inherit the kingdom of God. Do not be deceived. Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor men who have sex with men….will inherit the kingdom of God.” I Timothy 3:16 says, “All Scripture is God-breathed” so these ARE God’s words.
A pastor’s wife once told me in a discussion about homosexuality, “Jesus never said homosexuality is wrong”. I stood there stunned. Who is Jesus? In Matthew 1:23, the angel said, “They will call Him Immanuel (which means God with us). Jesus IS God and “all Scripture is God-breathed”. How could a pastor’s wife of retirement age miss this? Now you know why many churches are missing it, too.
Here’s the “Good News”: All sins are forgivable but one: blasphemy against the Holy Spirit. Homosexuality can be forgiven like any other sin - by trusting in Christ with a repentant heart. Living in unrepentant sin (inlcuding homosexuality) is a sign of an unchanged heart. God created the earth and its people, and He makes the rules. The prayer of all Christians should be that all homosexuals are saved. In the meantime, remember: God requires us to love them just like He loves us!