Thursday, May 24, 2012

Homosexuality, Mutiny And Pharisees

My plan since sometime this past fall had been to compose a blog post, or perhaps a series of blog posts on the topic of homosexuality. A situation which I'm not yet at liberty to disclose prompted this plan, and I want to address the person involved privately before I write about the matter here. Since October, I've been praying and carefully studying the Bible, making sure I understand both this person's perspective and the Bible's teaching, but John's cancer, heart attack, hospitalization and surgery necessitated that I put the issue on the back burner. Doing so was, very obviously, appropriate.

Then President Obama admitted what we already knew "evolved." I'm not sure why his predictable announcement that he favors same sex marriage has thrust the debate over homosexuality into the limelight these past two weeks, but the Internet is practically swimming in various posts examining the topic. Admittedly, all the attention focused on homosexuality (and especially on what the Word of God says about it) has added clarity to how I will approach the conversation with my friend, but I didn't expect to bring it up publicly until I read "Answering Basic Questions About Homosexuality; Or, Why I Will Never Be A Big Conference Headliner, I Guess" in today's Pyromaniacs blog.

Dan Philips, who authored the blog post, addresses the question of whether or not homosexual behavior is sinful. (50 years ago, such a question would be ludicrous.) Yes, Philips answers. One cannot pursue a homosexual identity/lifestyle and expect to escape God's wrath. But he immediately follows that statement with this pivotal paragraph:

Having said that, let me take a step back and say that "sin" is any want of conformity to the will and nature of God. Sin is rebellion against God's Lordship. It is refusal to do what God commands, or insisting on doing what God forbids, or rejecting what God enjoins. It had its birth in Adam and Eve's insane desire to "be as God." Every sin is an attempt to be God instead of God.
Before I dare to write about homosexuality, I must allow the Lord to deal with the numerous logs in my own eye. I, along with many of my brothers and sisters in Christ, must regain the perspective that all sin, including homosexual behavior, is overt mutiny against God. Dan Philips makes that point, and it can't be over-emphasized. You see, Jesus did not fault the Pharisees for taking stands against least when they derived those stands from Scripture. Rather, He faulted them for not first acknowledging their own rebellion against the God they claimed to represent.

Jesus is Lord, and requires obedience from all of us. Heterosexual sin is just as heinous as homosexual sin, as is gossip, worry, complaining, anger...and a whole litany of other thoughts, attitudes and behaviors. Homosexuality certainly is one manifestation of defiance against His Word, and it's important to maintain that stance even amid increasing pressure to condone it by legalizing same sex marriage. So yes, I will maintain a Biblical opposition to homosexual behavior. But in doing so, may I first allow the Holy Spirit to continually examine my heart, that my own mutiny against Him may be crushed.

1 comment:

  1. You do make an excellent point, DebbieLynne. Sin is sin, and one sin isn't any better or worse than another. Even the slightest sin of doubt is rebellion against Jesus, so none of us are without sin. Some sin does have a greater burden of guilt, and I don't claim to be any kind of expert on the topic. I'm just very thankful to know that Jesus is a forgiving God. In this life I will have rebellion and sin as constant companions, but thankfully Jesus promised that He will be my constant companion also, and promised He would NEVER leave or forsake me. That I forsake Him and often forget to thank Him is a given. That He is merciful and gracious is also a given.

    I agree that we ought never say that what is sinful is not sinful, that would be a lie, and it doesn't help people seek the love and gracious mercy of our Lord. Sin is sin, in all it's many forms. We ought always remember that whenever we want to elevate our own brand of sinfulness higher than someone else's. It is all sin.
    ...But in Christ, He forgives ALL SIN. :)


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