Last night our small group spent the evening focusing on gay marriage. It was a night I won’t soon forget. Few group meetings are unforgettable but this one was. Why? Our group’s discussion was a reflection of the heart of Jesus.
- No one was demeaning or condescending toward anyone in the gay community.
- No one had an “us and them” or an “us versus them” mentality.
- No one showed any kind of disgust, anger, or animosity toward the gay community.
- No one discounted the fact that sexual sin between two people of the same gender is not in God’s perfect plan.
- No one ignored the fact that we are all sinners wrestling with our own sins.
Our conversation may be helpful to you as you find yourself leading a group discussing gay marriage. There are at least six facts or truths that were unearthed in our conversation, facts and/or truths that cannot be overlooked as we wrestle with this tough topic.
- Those of us who have never experienced same sex attraction cannot understand the plight of those who have and do. One of the things that came up in our conversation is that we must be very careful that we don’t deem ourselves experts on something we have never struggled with. For those of us who are heterosexual, we need to remember the level of sexual intensity we feel for someone we love. Oftentimes the intensity of our sexual desire has been overwhelming. The same may be true of those who are drawn to people of the same sex.
- We are to love, befriend, care for, have compassion on, and make the Gospel known to anyone who is engaged in any sinful act. Jesus modeled this for us as He spoke with the Samaritan woman drawing water at the well in Sychar. (John 4:1 – 26)
- Sin must be deemed sin or those who are sinful will never recognize their need for a Savior. Scripture tells us what sin is and what those acts are that are sinful acts. When anyone is unwilling to acknowledge that sin is sin and that they are engaged in a sinful activity (Psalms 51:5, Proverbs 28:13, Proverbs 32:5, Jeremiah 3:13, Jeremiah 1:40, 1 John 1:9), they see no need for a Savior (1 John 2:1-2) to remove the stain of sin from them. (Isaiah 1:18)
- Repentance, that is, to change one’s mind and because of a change of mind change one’s actions, is the biblical responsibility of anyone who is a follower of Jesus Christ. (Acts 2:38)
- One of the reasons sexual sins have become acceptable in western culture is due to the fact that we have allowed the media to desensitize us over time. Psalm 1:1 – 3 reminds us that whatever ideology we give our time and attention to will, over time, indoctrinate us. Western culture has been intoxicated and indoctrinated by sexuality as portrayed on television, in movies, in the books we read, and through any and all forms of visual media we have engaged in consistently. In the process we have subconsciously embraced ideas concerning marriage and sexuality that contradict God’s ideals.
- The reason gay activity is widespread in our culture is due to the fact that we as a society have idolized things other than God Himself. Romans 1: 22 – 28 reads, 22 Claiming to be wise, they became fools 23 and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man, birds, four-footed animals, and reptiles.
24 Therefore God delivered them over in the cravings of their hearts to sexual impurity, so that their bodies were degraded among themselves. 25 They exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served something created instead of the Creator, who is praised forever. Amen.
26 This is why God delivered them over to degrading passions. For even their females exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. 27 The males in the same way also left natural relations with females and were inflamed in their lust for one another. Males committed shameless acts with males and received in their own persons the appropriate penalty of their error.
28 And because they did not think it worthwhile to acknowledge God, God delivered them over to a worthless mind to do what is morally wrong.
The Holman Christian Standard Study Bible gives some important clarity to the confusion that is and the truth that the Bible points out as it relates to the worship of the one true God… “Many people think that the history of religion developed along an evolutionary model. In this view, humanity originally held animistic beliefs, and then progressed to polytheism, to tribal deities, and then to a single creator God. From there we progressed to a vague philosophical monotheism in the Enlightenment, and finally we are now embracing atheism in the age of science. But this is not true to the early history of religion. Instead of starting in polytheism, the Bible says humanity started with knowledge of the one true God and then declined into polytheism as humans were separated from God and fractured from one another. Paul warns that loss of knowledge of the true God resulted in worship of images resembling mortal man.”
Concerning verses 26 – 27… “Lesbians and homosexuals often argue that this verse only prohibits sexual abuse of children, or else they say that natural sexual relations are not violated when men and women who are born with a tendency for homosexual desires (as they claim) practice homosexuality. But Paul clearly says lesbianism is unnatural, and the Bible elsewhere strictly prohibits all homosexuality (e.g. Lv 18:22). The Creator intended male and female to be joined in marriage (GN 2:24).”
If your group ends up discussing this important topic, I’m praying that your discussion will be as loving and biblical as ours was and that your group will come to the same bottom line that ours did… It is important that we accept and embrace God’s truth on this issue, that we love those who are engaged in sexual activity that contradicts God’s perspective as much as Jesus did and does, and that we share the Gospel with all people whose sin separates them from our loving Father.