Have you noticed that the winds of change are blowing with ever-increasing intensity as of late? Nowadays anything goes, and there’s a different “take” on many of the moral issues that regularly pop up in the daily news headlines.
With all sorts of opinions permeating news outlets, blogs, and social media, everything is now up for debate including the topic of homosexuality.
Despite widespread attempts to make Christianity culturally relevant by redefining biblical standards, I find tremendous comfort in knowing that the truth of God’s Word remains steadfast and unshakeable from generation to generation. Amid all the clamor of the opinions and teachings of men, it is positively crucial that believers know “thus says the Lord” concerning the various controversial issues that challenge those who profess to know Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.
The Bible tells us clearly what God has to say about the sin of homosexuality, regardless of what the secular world—and a growing segment in the Church—have to say.
But for decades now, specific passages in the Bible stating clearly that homosexuality is sinful, and therefore forbidden by God, have been deliberately misinterpreted by some, and basically ignored by others, who regard these scriptural references as irrelevant for contemporary society. As a result we have seen numerous denominations divided over this issue, with more and more yielding to the pressure to conform to an unbiblical view of homosexuality.
Nevertheless, God is not mocked, and there is no way anyone can legitimately circumvent what God prohibits.
Over the years, as I’ve counseled hundreds of men struggling with homosexuality, I’ve found many who were convinced that God made them that way (despite the fact that over time most are terribly unsatisfied, enshrouded in self-condemnation, and increasingly burdened with guilt and despair). The scientific community has reinforced this mindset among countless struggling homosexuals, and the devil has worked through numerous activists and influential personalities to widen the gate for individuals to enter this pathway which eventually leads to death. Others make excuses and point to things they experienced in their past (abuse, rejection, low self-esteem and so forth) which relieve them of responsibility for their sin and taking it to the Cross of Jesus Christ.
Those who bravely declare the truth of what God says about homosexuality are in many instances viciously attacked, labeled as self-righteous, branded intolerant, despised as “haters,” and perhaps in the not too distant future they are destined to face imprisonment for committing a so-called “hate crime.”
From my own personal experience, I know that a person who chooses a homosexual lifestyle cannot glorify God and is therefore destined to enter a ‘spiral of degradation’ described by Paul in Romans 1:21-27:
For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like mortal man and birds and animals and reptiles. Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. They exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen. Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural relations for unnatural ones. In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed indecent acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their perversion.
But here’s the good news in all of this: because the root of all sinful behavior is found in the heart, there is hope for any man or woman who is struggling with some besetting sin—even homosexuality! It is a heart issue (as Jesus describes in Mark 7:20-23). And the good news is that “if we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (I John 1:8)—no matter how dark and wicked our hearts may be.
In his first letter to the Corinthian church, Paul warns believers to guard against deception but also offers hope that homosexuality – like any life-dominating sin—can be forgiven and overcome:
Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God. (I Corinthians 6:-11)
This passage gave me much hope and encouragement when I was going through the Pure Life Ministries Residential Program in 1999. For the first time, it was real to me: I can overcome and be cleansed from homosexual sin because of the blood of Jesus! My years of victory over homosexuality proclaims this truth.
I’m so grateful that God sent His Son, Jesus Christ to save the world from SIN. So to call homosexuality SIN, actually offers tremendous hope to anyone who struggles or doubts that it’s possible to live in freedom.
Someone who has been steeped in this sin for years and years, might have a difficult time believing in God’s forgiveness because of all the lies he’s believed and been fed by various sources. But Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever. (Hebrews 13:8) He is forever our great Sin-bearer and the God-Who-Forgives. (Psalm 99:8) He “gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works.” (Titus 2:14) The Lord has not changed, nor will He ever alter His Word to accommodate man’s sinful desires and choices.
He is a God rich in mercy and willing to deliver anyone who cries out for help and deliverance.
Brad Furges worked for Pure Life Ministries from 1999 to 2015, the last seven years of which he served as Director of Men’s Counseling. Brad holds a B.A. from the University of Virginia (UVa) and an M.A. in Biblical Counseling from Master’s Divinity School.
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