The Absolute Absurdity of “Gay” Churches

Title: The Absolute Absurdity of “Gay” Churches

Text: Genesis 19:1-29 (4-5, 29), Leviticus 18:22, Romans 1:26-27

Date: June 23rd, 2009

 

Last week I talked about the “Absolute Absurdity of Gay Pride,” strongly objecting to the new president’s proclamation of June as “Gay Pride” month in the United States. This week, while I’m on the same subject, I’d like to talk about the “Absolute Absurdity of Gay Churches.” Yes, that’s right. There are so-called “Gay Churches” in more and more communities throughout the country. These so-called churches, many which identify themselves as Evangelical churches, claim that they are full-fledged members of the Christian church or Body of Christ. Members of these “churches” say that they must gather together in gay-friendly churches because they feel unwelcome and discouraged and discriminated against in typical churches. They say that they must form their own congregations and affiliate with a different denomination – such as the Metropolitan Community Church, in order to pray, worship God, fellowship and receive instruction in Christianity. They claim separate pro-gay churches are needed until the wider Christian community accepts and finally embraces people of different sexual orientations. While some churches in the main-line or so-called “old-line” denominational structure are opening to welcoming and affirming homosexual Christians – such as the United Church of Christ, the Episcopalians, the United Methodists, and the Northern Baptists, for example, most churches and denominations still object to the practice of homosexuality as sinful and therefore something to be discouraged, not encouraged or accepted. Because they are not accepted yet in all churches and denominations, so-called Gay Christians must meet separately for now in separate churches and denominational structures. But wait. Don’t all Christians conclude that homosexuality is a sin? Isn’t in plain from the Bible that homosexuality is contrary to the law of God? Isn’t it clear both in the Old Testament and New Testament that the practice of homosexuality is sinful? Isn’t Sodom and Gomorrah the best-known examples of God’s opposition to homosexuality? Isn’t it clear from the judgment of God that came upon these ancient cities, as recorded in the Old Testament, that homosexuality is a sin? Not according to the so-called Christian pro-gay movement. Despite millennia after millennia of traditional biblical understanding that Sodom and Gomorrah are examples of God’s displeasure and opposition to the sin of homosexuality, according to the members of the so-called pro-gay churches everyone has got it all wrong for thousands and thousands of years. They say the Bible has been misinterpreted; it never really teaches against homosexuality at all. All the familiar verses used to teach that homosexuality is a sin are misinterpreted. Accordingly, one can be a full-fledged Christian and practicing homosexual – and need not repent. One can be a member of a Bible-believing church that teaches homosexuality is not sinful, according to this view. Same-sex marriages can be performed and blessed within the church with God’s full endorsement — and so forth and so on. Now the big question is, what should be the wider Christian community’s response to such claims? I’d like to weigh in on the issue by first of all stating categorically that these kinds of claims are absolutely absurd! They are rationalizations and denials of biblical truths – and not very good denials and rationalizations either. But because they are heard more and more today, I’d like to go through these claims and show why they are false. According to the Bible and authentic Christian teaching, homosexuality is a sin. That is very clear when the Bible is examined carefully. Let me point out three areas that show why Christianity and homosexuality are totally incompatible, and that it is absolutely absurd to speak of “gay” churches or “gay” Christianity with any degree of seriousness.

 

First, there is the example of Sodom and Gomorrah. Genesis 19:1-29 (4-5, 29), “Before they had gone to bed, all the men from every part of the city of Sodom – both young and old – surrounded the house. 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’ . . . So then God destroyed the cities of the plain. . . .”  Without much difficulty it’s clear to see that homosexuality is described and that it resulted in God’s judgment of destruction upon the cities. It’s been understood in this way for thousands of years. It’s the natural and normal way to read the account as it’s described. Not so, say so-called pro-gay Christians and pro-gay churches. In the pro-gay documentary “The Bible Tells Me So,” the argument is made that the sin of Sodom and Gomorrah was not homosexual sex but rather a lack of hospitality, insensitivity and uncaring. They point to verses like Ezekiel 16:49, “Now this was the sin of your sister Sodom: She and her daughters were arrogant, overfed and unconcerned; they did not help the poor and needy. They were haughty and did detestable things before me. Therefore I did away with them as you have seen.” But the problem with this kind of argument is that it doesn’t eliminate the sin of homosexuality as a sin of Sodom and Gomorrah – it merely expands on the sins they were guilty of and adds some more. It may have been guilty of other sins, but that doesn’t excuse it from the sin of homosexuality. It was probably known for many sins in the ancient world, but the fact is, it was known for the sin of homosexuality. For example, in the New Testament of the Bible, Jude 7 says, “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.” This reference isn’t merely a legend or rumor of the ancient world; this is a biblical reference by an inspired writer of scripture. According to Jude, Sodom and Gomorrah were judged because of their sexual immorality and perversions. Again, that isn’t to say they didn’t commit other sins worthy of judgment, but it only goes to show that as best we can tell they were judged mostly because of their homosexual perversions. This is the traditional understanding of the account of Sodom and Gomorrah – and there is no compelling reason to change it. The only possible reason why anyone would want to change it is to do a convenient re-write of history in order to make a case in favor of homosexual practices. If the argument from the example of Sodom and Gomorrah that homosexuality is wrong could be weakened or eliminated entirely, this would go a long ways in clearing the way for pro-gay Christians, pro-gay theology, and pro-gay churches. However, the arguments attempting to re-interpret the judgment of Sodom and Gomorrah fail, and so do arguments attempting to justify the sin of homosexuality and homosexual churches. Homosexual relationships have always been, are, and always will be sinful. No clever attempts to re-write the Bible can change that.

 

Second, there is the example of Leviticus. Leviticus 18:22, “Do not lie with a man as one lies with a woman; that is detestable.” Again, as with the example of Sodom and Gomorrah, this passage and similar passages elsewhere in Leviticus are seen as proof positive of the sinfulness of homosexual practices. This is how Jews and Christians have believed for thousands of years. But, no, say the homosexual activists within the church, the verse in Leviticus prohibiting homosexual activity doesn’t apply to homosexuality today. Why not? Because, they say, other prohibitions listed in the Levitical law aren’t prohibited today, so why single out homosexual relationships as wrong when these other practices are now accepted. This is another argument made in the documentary movie “The Bible Tells Me So.” For example, Leviticus 19:19 states, “Keep my decrees. Do not mate different kinds of animals. Do not plant your field with two kinds of seed. Do not wear clothing woven of two kinds of materials.” The point is then argued, since we don’t keep the prohibition against sowing two different kinds of seeds or wearing clothes with two different kinds of materials, why should we follow the prohibition against homosexual relationships? The argument seems to be, if we don’t follow all of the prohibitions in Leviticus today, why must follow any of them today? And if all of these prohibitions are not absolutely binding for all people for all times, then maybe the prohibition of Leviticus against same sex relations is not binding today either. They would say, to make it absolute and binding today is hypocritical, since nobody argues that other prohibitions are binding today; it’s an arbitrary judgment to require some of the laws be absolute while others are not. So the argument is that while this passage in Leviticus does prohibit homosexual sex, it is no longer binding as law today; it is not prohibited now. The problem with this argument is that while there are prohibitions that only pertain to the ancient Jewish context and are no longer binding for Christians, some of the prohibitions are still binding for Christians today. For example, in Leviticus 18, there are many prohibitions against certain kinds of sexual activity, such as incest and bestiality. For example, in the very next verse after the prohibition against homosexuality, it reads, “Do not have sexual relations with an animal and defile yourself with it,” Leviticus 18:23. Certainly pro-gay Christians wouldn’t want to say this taboo isn’t binding today. No, it is still valid as a prohibition. Bestiality is still a sin today, as it was in ancient times. But why is it still a sin? Because it carries over from Leviticus to other books of the Old Testament and into the New Testament, as some of the other prohibitions do not. It’s the same way with the sin of homosexuality. We know that gay sex is wrong today because the ancient prohibition against homosexuality is carried over into the New Testament; it isn’t abandoned as merely a ceremonial or temporary prohibition. So the argument put forth by pro-gay Christians and pro-gay churches that homosexuality is no longer a sin because it was one of those temporary laws that no longer apply today is wrong. It is prohibited today because it was carried over from the Old into the New Testament as a sin, and is thus binding law today. It’s still a sin today.

 

Third, there is the example of Paul. Romans 1:26-27, “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 perversions.” The Apostle also writes to condemn the practice of homosexuality in other passages, but I’ll limit myself to this one verse in order to prove my point. What could be clearer? Here Paul speaks of homosexuality using the words or phrases, “shameful lusts,” “unnatural,” “indecent acts,” “perversions.” That’s pretty strong language – strong negative language! How can one escape the fact that the Apostle here is prohibiting homosexuality? Well, it’s here that we see people who will go to any length, to any degree in order to justify or rationalize their own favorite position. The argument is made in the documentary movie “The Bible Tells Me So” that what Paul is really talking about here in Romans is different than what homosexuality is typically today. The claim is made that the Apostle Paul believed — as well as all ancient people and most people believed before modern times – that homosexuality is a choice not something someone is born with from the start. According to this argument, through modern science we now know that some people are born with the same-sex urge and that it isn’t a conscious choice. If Paul and others had known that it was inborn and not a choice he wouldn’t have spoken as strongly as he did against homosexual practices. In addition, so goes the argument, even if the Apostle had an idea that homosexuality is something inborn, what he wrote about in Romans only concerns the sin of people going against their natural urges. But what if a homosexual is born that way and homosexuality is natural for him or her? What Paul is really prohibiting, so they say, is a normal or straight person with heterosexual urges switching over and having homosexual sex – that would really be unnatural. But for normal homosexual persons, a same sex relationship is their normal and natural way. The argument is made then for same sex marriages as being normal and natural for those born with same sex urges; thus they wouldn’t be violating Paul’s prohibition against unnatural sex. But the argument utterly misses the point. Paul isn’t arguing from the individual person’s “normal” or “natural” sexual predisposition; he’s arguing from what is normal and natural as found in God’s created order. God created male and female in order to procreate. God created male bodies and female bodies in the natural state to work together for the purpose of procreation. Male and female bodies naturally “fit” together for sexual procreation. This is natural. Male bodies don’t “fit” together naturally; neither do female bodies “fit” together naturally. The Apostle is talking about God’s created natural order, not each person’s corrupted and sinful natural predisposition. The only way Paul’s prohibition against homosexuality can explained away is if it is grossly misread, willfully and intentionally. From beginning to end, beginning in the Old Testament and ending in the New Testament – homosexuality is prohibited as a sin. There simply is no way of getting around that.

 

Now most homosexual activists realize that the Bible solidly condemns homosexual practices, so they don’t even bother trying to justify or rationalize such practices from the Bible. They simply dismiss or discount the Bible as a source of authoritative truth. But there are people like I’ve mentioned before who try to promote homosexuality within the Christian church and who want to convert the Christian faith to their pro-gay cause. It’s not enough to have a pro-homosexual political movement, but now the Christian church must be used as a tool of the cause, and for this to happen it must be converted and won over to the cause so that its organization and its influence might promote homosexuality in all of society. That is what is being done today. But Christians must wake up to what is being done and resist it with great effort and at great cost. At the present time there are many different denominational churches that now openly and actively support the normalization of homosexuality. There is an openly gay bishop in the Episcopalian church. There are countless openly pro-gay church pastors and church leaders in many churches. There are now many churches that officially and openly marry same sex couples within the church. There are still more church pastors, local churches and denominations, such as Northern Baptists – or, American Baptist, as it’s called in some parts of the country — that  “welcome” and “affirm” the practice of homosexuality and same sex couples within their churches. They accept many or most of the arguments put forth in order to justify homosexuality from the Bible, which means they buy into the twisted logic, rationalizations, and fabrications made to nullify the Bible’s prohibition against homosexuality. The really sad fact is that today many so-called evangelicals are buying into the same scripture-twisting arguments. For example, popular author and conference speaker Tony Campolo makes essentially the same kind of argument for homosexuality as I’ve covered above; his wife goes even further advocating same sex marriages and teaches that homosexuals can participate in loving same sex unions blessed by God, so why shouldn’t the church bless them too? And this is all happening within so-called Bible-believing, evangelical circles! It’s time for those who call themselves evangelicals to draw the line and state that the Bible clearly and unequivocally prohibits homosexuality, and that goes for same sex marriages. It’s time for evangelical leaders to clearly state the truth of God’s Word and draw lines in denominations, churches and para-church organizations. Enough of our ambiguity on this point. I believe a lot of confusion comes from the fact that evangelical leaders are not clear about where they stand on these issues. In an effort to not offend or alienate people, leaders have remained silent or at best vague and ambiguous about these things. But the time has come to clearly state what the Bible teaches and draw lines in the church. Let’s be extra clear on this point – the Bible prohibits all homosexual activity; it is sin.

Advertisements

2 Responses to “The Absolute Absurdity of “Gay” Churches”

  1. david grove Says:

    Amen. Thank you for posting this.

  2. Niko Moreira Says:

    I agree, although I thought I sniffed a tad but of old fashioned prejudice there as well at some points, but that could be just my interpretation. But we cannot escape what the bible says, believer or not, straight or homosexual etc.

    In any case by my own best understanding as God is Love, even homosexuals should have, if indeed born a certain way, right to love each other for who can condemn love? Love does not hurt people but makes them stronger and builds up. However God’s understanding of love (agape) goes way beyond our physical understanding that’s meant for procreation mainly. That means that there’s nothing wrong two men loving each other on a platonic level, that’s clearly evident in the case of David and Jonathan (soul mates) but resisting sexual urges or impure thoughts on a same sex basis.

    Heavenly kingdom is after all described as something where we are all united in Love, no more need for marriages.. So clearly the physical act of same sex is the sin here, not the platonic act of love which can be a beautiful thing even between man and animal when we take sinful carnality out of the equation. By this example I mean the deep connection a man can share with his dog without it being perverse as he simply loves, and does not lust after it.

    I know it seems freaky but really once we start considering Love in it’s purest form, it really tends to lose connections to our bodily urges and open doors equally for anyone capable of love.

    I think this sort of thinking is lacking in many Christian ideals, where gay people are looked at as evil people. I used to be prejudiced myself before but after meeting some gay people and witnessing their positive side, I’ve had to re-evaluate my original understanding. It does not erase the fact that homosexual acts of sex are against God, it just erases my biased prejudice against gay people and allows me have more compassion for them. Imagine burning from desire but having no lawful means of quenching it, like a heterosexual can in marriage? Homosexuals have it hard on them and lack of compassion certainly does not help their disposition. Maybe God made them that way, I don’t have all the answers but they certainly have the raw end of the deal, and we ought not to worsen it for them. However that don’t mean we ought to condone sin either. From political perspective the solution seems simple, let them ‘marry’ in a state office or ceremony but a church should stay far away from gay marriage and keep upholding the bible as authority.

    It’s almost funny how it came to be this way after all. The church wanted authority of marriage from heathens so the papacy took it, now it’s become tradition in society and now the church in general suffers the repercussions. As even in minds of gay’s it’s the church’s responsibility to marry people and that’s why they feel discriminated.

    In my mind the church giving people into marriage is ridiculous at best and stems from man’s hunger for dominion and power. Back in the ancient times God was the authority bringing people into marriage together (Abram&Sarai) and the pagans had their own pantheon under which people were married. There was no marriage franchise as we have today. God blessed the couple and at best, some close friends and family joined in on the blessing, not some priest the couple hardly knows in person. The modern face of Christian church is a mockery I think, a product of traditions of men accumulating thousands of years, intertwined into biblical rationale.

    I consider myself a believer, but I see a lot of more Christlike unbelievers now a days than I see believers in Christ doing. Although I’m not blaming the church for it, just stating what I observe. Maybe there is poetic justice there. The modern church truly has to rely on the power of Christ’s blood instead of their own merits, because their own merits are quite weak. So in a way it’s good. But as a living testimony for Christ the church could do way better. Just sayin’
    But I got to start from myself before critiqueing the body of believers. I know there are living stones out there, but rare gems they are indeed.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: