Marriage, Family Life and Sexual Health Conference, Trinidad and Tobago
Personally and professionally – the issue of homosexuality is extremely important to me. Having once been a member of the gay community, I am very familiar with the subculture. I have felt what homosexuals feel – rejection, a consuming fire to be loved for who you are, anger, and hurt. I am equally familiar with how friends and family feel when someone close to them announces, “I’m gay!” I am aware of how the Church often seems like the last place to go for help. And, I remain painfully aware of just how families, Christian families in particular, suffer through excruciating pain – as my family did.
Therefore, it is my hope that responses to questions about homosexuality recently offered at the Marriage, Family Life and Sexual Health Conference in Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago will both challenge and inform. Many of the questions are questions people want to ask but are often very reluctant to voice.
Question: Is molestation the main cause of someone struggling with same-sex attraction?
Answer: Same-sex attraction is caused by a combination of possible factors such as: temperament and personality, family dynamics, peer pressure, experimentation with the same-sex, and exposure to pornography – to name a few. Incest, molestation and sexual violation are all too common factors in contributing to same-sex attraction. In the lives of both men and women, same-sex attraction is multi-causal and is usually formed by a combination of factors.
Question: How do I share the Gospel with my gay friend?
Answer: First and foremost, see your friend – not just the problem. Sharing the Gospel with a gay-identified man or woman is no different from anyone else. Avoid making homosexuality your primary focus. Initially, Romans 1 has rarely been very successful in introducing someone to Christ Jesus. Start with the Gospel of John and rely upon the Holy Spirit to reveal God’s truth that we are all sinners and in need of a Savior.
Question: How do I approach someone I suspect has homosexual tendencies?
Answer: Be very, very careful. Having a suspicion someone is struggling with homosexuality versus knowing is extremely different. Never, ever approach someone about their sexuality on a hunch. The potential for doing far more harm than good is considerable. Consider the pain that may by inflicted if you are wrong.
Question: How do you respond to someone who says they were born a homosexual?
Answer: The ‘born gay’ theory, notion or opinion first and foremost violates and contradicts Scripture. God has clearly stated in His Word that ‘homosexual practice’ is a sin. Therefore, why would God then intentionally create a man or woman with same-sex attraction? Also, to date, there are no scientific studies that have conclusively proven homosexuality to be inborn. A gay gene has never been discovered.
Question: Should we as Christians befriend those that participate in the homosexual lifestyle?
Answer: There is a world of difference between ‘acceptance and approval.’ As Christians, we do not want to shun anyone. Most of what they think about us may be exactly what they think about God the Father. Well-defined boundaries are necessary when distinguishing between the person and their actions/lifestyle. Distinguish between ministering to their humanity versus supporting their homosexuality.
Question: Is ‘change’ from homosexuality always instantaneous or is it a process?
Answer: No, more than not, God works through a process which always points to an element of time. Working through past hurts, insecurities and immaturity’s is a process for everyone – not just the recovering homosexual. While God can certainly ‘microwave’ our deliverance, He usually works through a process because He molds us into the men and women He intends us to be.
Question: As a Christian, should I attend a same-sex marriage ceremony?
Answer: The answer for any Christian should be “No, thank you.” That said, don’t just decline an invitation to a same-sex wedding. Explain that your decision is based upon principle and not as a judgment on individuals. A Christian should never support any attempt to subvert the sanctity of a man and a woman in marriage as God intended.
Question: Where does it say in the Bible that homosexuality is a sin?
Answer: Genesis 19; Leviticus 18:22; 20:13; Romans 1:24-27; 1 Corinthians 6:9-11; 1 Timothy 1:8-10. The Bible leaves no wiggle-room regarding homosexual practice. Scripture is clear that homosexuality is against God’s original intent.
Question: What is wrong with two people of the same gender loving one another?
Answer: Nothing, unless sexual expression of that love is involved. Yes, “God is love,” (1 John 4:16) but the verse cannot be twisted to support a behavior that contradicts other verses that have clearly established God’s boundaries with regard to sexual intimacy.
Question: Why is looking at pornography so bad?
Answer: Pornography should be seen as the evil that it is. Hate it for what it does to others as well as for what it does to you and your relationship with God. Pornography diseases body, soul and spirit. Pornography (worship of the human body) leads to sexual depravity and disaster. Ultimately, pornography can be summarized as an idol factory.
Question: How can my church truly represent Christ to a homosexual?
Answer: Educate and equip your church regarding God’s truth regarding homosexuality and be careful to focus on a balance of both truth and grace. Also, a powerful ex-gay testimony from the pulpit will grant credibility to the promise and reality of hope that can be found in the power of Jesus Christ. Never, ever open up the wounds of those impacted by homosexuality (or their family members as well) and then leave them with nothing to bandage their hurts.
Question: Is it true that 10% of the population is gay?
Answer: No. The 10% fraud was conceived by Alfred Kinsey in the 1940’s. Ultimately, the gay community jumped on the figure and began to promote the idea – often with the help of the media. Some members of the gay community continue to promote the 10% faulty research for social and political gain.
Question: Can a homosexual really change?
Answer: If you believe in an all-powerful God, “Yes!” 1 Corinthians 6 states very clearly, “And this is what some of you were.” Leaving homosexuality behind requires a highly motivated person and a person that “holds unswervingly to the hope (we) profess, for He who promised is faithful.” (Hebrews 10:23)
Question: Why all the bother? My pastor says all homosexuals are going to hell.
Answer: Are alcoholics, liars, gossips, etc., also all going to hell? There isn’t a sliding scale of whose sins are more serious. Frankly, if “brokenness” is the criterion for keeping one out of heaven, then I know of no one that qualifies for entrance into heaven.
Question: What is wrong with children having a set of parents of the same-sex?
Answer: Little boys and girls need the influence of both male and female parents to become who they are meant to be by God. Same-sex parents will inevitably give a child an incomplete understanding of and appreciation for the differences in gender.
Question: How should I respond when I am accused of being homophobic?
Answer: Today, many Christians are being accused and vilified with words like ‘intolerant’ and ‘homophobic.’ Jesus never promised our lives would be easy. In fact, He promised just the opposite; “If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.” (Matthew 16:24) To be truly homophobic means one has an irrational fear of homosexuals. Objecting or having an opposing view or belief about homosexual practice is not to be homophobic. Often, very often, a Christian must endure the mockery of society while not apologizing for the truth and authority of Scripture.
Question: Should I make homosexuality the topic of conversation every time I’m around my struggling friend?
Answer: No. If your friend thinks every time he is around you he is going to get a sermon on homosexuality, he will purpose to avoid you. Also, ministering to anyone about homosexuality is not the same as arguing. The very moment your conversation becomes heated or emotional – drop it! The only thing you will achieve is pushing your friend the wrong direction.
Question: Is there really hope for the homosexual to change?
Answer: Yes. First recognize that each person is unique. As a result, the struggle with same-sex attraction might be very similar in some ways, but can be very different from person-to-person as well. Each man and each woman desiring to leave homosexuality or lesbianism behind must have an unwavering commitment to the ‘process’ regardless of how painful or long it is. The individual must be extremely motivated and “hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for He who promised is faithful.” (Hebrews 10:23)
Question: What is the right motivation in leaving homosexuality behind?
Answer: You must be desperate for change. Make God the Father your primary focus – not heterosexuality. Anyone that makes their primary focus of moving fully into heterosexuality and not achieving ‘obedience’ to God the Father across-the-board, enhances their chances of failure. The opposite of homosexuality is not heterosexuality – it is holiness.
Question: AIDS doesn’t seem to be much in the news any more. Has the crisis been resolved?
Answer: No. There remains an extremely high percentage of new HIV infections each year occurring among young gay men. While it is true AIDS new drug treatments are enabling people with AIDS to live out a normal life span, many continue to not take prevention seriously. All of the experts agree the only way we will see significant improvement to the on-going HIV/AIDS pandemic is when people change their behavior.
Question: What if scientists do find a genetic link to homosexuality?
Answer: Would science trump the Word of God? The bottom line for anyone claiming a faith based on Scripture is that even if a genetic cause for homosexuality is discovered, God’s Word still makes no provision for homosexual behavior.
Today, young men and women are growing up learning that the ideas and images around them about sex, gender, relationships, and marriage are all acceptable and all good. Today, many young people are being encouraged to explore their sexuality. Exploration often has a very high cost.
In Proverbs it says that, “There is no wisdom and no understanding, and no counsel against the Lord.”
Any attempt or effort to redefine homosexual relationships as consistent with biblical faith constitutes an attack upon the very foundations of faith and God’s moral law. Personally, I continue to believe that God’s world-shattering love (seemingly weak and pathetic to some today) will one day return to center stage.
Those of us who know God’s love, redemption and deliverance are not waiting for the heavens to declare it. We are walking in it now. What is stronger than the forces of hell? The love of God.
For the foolishness of God is wiser than human wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than human strength.” (1 Corinthians 1:25)
“For your sake we are being killed all the day long; we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered. No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us.” (Romans 8:36-37)
“He is not weak in dealing with you, but is powerful among you. For to be sure, He was crucified in weakness, yet He lives by God’s power. Likewise, we are weak in Him, yet by God’s power we will live with Him…” (2 Corinthians 13:3-4)
The Bible never speaks positively about homosexuality or any other sexual practices outside a lifelong heterosexual monogamous commitment. Difficult as this standard is to obey, it is the calling of Christ for all His followers, including those with same-sex attractions and desires.
If someone you know is struggling with same-sex attraction, I hope you find the above informative and helpful.
Pastor Phillip Lee
His Way Out Ministries
Member of Restored Hope Network
“If I profess with the loudest voice and clearest exposition every portion of the truth of God except precisely that little point which the world and the devil are at the moment attacking, the I am not confessing Christ, however boldly I may be professing Christ. Where the battle rages, there the loyalty of the soldier is tested.” Martin Luther