Monday, June 25, 2012

Isn't Homosexuality An Abomination?

Leviticus 18:22 NKJV “You shall not lie with a male as with a woman. It is an abomination.”

Leviticus 18:22 NLT “Do not practice homosexuality, having sex with another man as with a woman. It is a detestable sin.”

No matter what side you’re on, everyone who’s been involved in the debate over homosexuality knows this verse. The world uses this verse to illustrate how backwards and intolerant the church is toward an oppressed minority. While many inside the church use this verse to lump certain people together into condemnation. Still others in the church say that this verse shows how outdated some parts of the Bible are. All of these arguments are completely wrong, and every one of them miss a major point - this verse condemns the act of homosexuality, but not those who practice it!

The reason this debate has become so heated is because we’ve used one particular sin to define a person. We call them them ‘homosexuals’ - as if what they do is who they are. But I’m telling you, there is a difference between a person’s behavior and their identity! Sure it’s a sin, sure God hates it, but that’s why Jesus came! He came to pay the penalty that our sin deserves - to bring forgiveness to the sinner! If we’re ever going to reach the world for Jesus, we need to learn how to separate what a sinner does from what their worth.

Which one of these sins do you think is worse?
If you’re like most Christians, even if you wouldn’t say it, homosexuality would be at the top of your list. After all, pride isn’t a ‘real sin.’ Lying and Gossip are wrong every time except when we do it. And murder can be repented of and then you’ll have a powerful testimony! (I’m describing our attitudes toward these sins, not the truth!) But homosexuality? It’s permanent! It’s a black mark on your eternal record! God calls it an abomination!

Would it surprise you that each of these sins are called an abomination to God? It’s right here in Proverbs 6:16-19: “These six things the Lord hates; yes, seven are an abomination to Him: a proud look, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that are swift in running to evil, a false witness who speaks lies, and one who sows discord among brethren.” There you have it, seven sins that are as detestable to God as homosexuality!

What’s my point here? Well, do you believe that lying is unforgivable? Do you believe that a liar can never change? Do you think that slander and discord is so deep-rooted into a gossip’s character that they can never change? Of course not! If we don’t look at these other abominations that way, then why do we condemn sinners who are caught in homosexuality to a worse fate?

This whole debate of accepting or condemning homosexuals completely misses the point! One side claims that homosexuals are born this way, so they should just be accepted. The other side says that homosexuals are an abomination and cuts them off. But the point is this: no behavior makes a person less valuable to God! Of course it’s sin, what would you expect from a sinner? But, in God’s eyes, one sinner isn’t better or worse than another! And the beauty of it all is that God wants to separate us from our sin!

We know that God doesn’t see sinners as unchangeable. God is in the business of separating people from their sin! Aren’t you glad that God didn’t condemn you for what you were doing? When we were sinners, when we were trapped by our behavior, Jesus still saw our worth! He died to sever sin’s hold on us. Don’t you think that wonderful freedom should be offered to everyone? Or are there some sins that are just too ‘gross’ to be redeemed from?

There were sinners in Jesus’ day that were looked at like this. The religious leaders condemned them because of the things they did. They were rejected, shunned and ridiculed. But whenever Jesus encountered them, He embraced them! The Pharisees were shocked! They asked His disciples, “Why does your Teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?

Do you see it? The Pharisees condemned the person with the behavior. But Jesus separated them! Even though He never accepted or endorsed the sin, He loved the sinner. And it was His love that changed their lives! Zaccheus repented of his sin when Jesus ate dinner in his home. The adulteress changed her life when Jesus defended her from her own actions.

This is my point: being sweet to someone who is involved in immorality doesn’t mean you’re endorsing that immorality. We’re called to show the same love that God showed us. I’m so glad that God loved me in spite of my sin - aren’t you?

Romans 2:4 “The goodness of God leads you to repentance

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