The Pro-Homosexual Movement Within Evangelicals
(Way of Life.org- David Cloud)
There is a rapidly growing tendency among popular Christian writers to accept unrepentant homosexuals as genuine Christians and to refuse to “judge” them. Following are a few examples:
Chris Seay, author of Faith of My Fathers, says churches are not “called to be moral police” and that we should “approach homosexuals without condemnation” (“Shayne Wheeler and Chris Seay on Homosexuals and the Church,” ChurchRelevance.com, June 19, 2007).
Donald McCullough says that “condemning homosexuality feels natural because about 95 percent of us could never imagine engaging in such a practice” but “in a world turned upside down by grace, we must distrust whatever feels natural” (If Grace Is So Amazing, Why Don’t We Like It, pp. 201, 202).
Brian McLaren says:
“Frankly, many of us don’t know what we should think about homosexuality. ... We aren’t sure if or where lines are to be drawn, nor do we know how to enforce with fairness whatever lines are drawn. ... Perhaps we need a five-year moratorium on making pronouncements” (“Brian McLaren on the Homosexual Question,” Jan. 23, 2006, http://blog.christianitytoday.com/outof ... ren_o.html).
Jim Wallis, founder of Sojourners, says in his book The Great Awakening (2008), that “civil rights for gay and lesbian people and equal protection under the law for same-sex couples” is “a justice issue” (p. 229).
Tony Campolo’s wife Peggy supports homosexual marriage. In fact, she is affiliated with the Association of Welcoming and Affirming Baptists, the mission of which is “to create and support a community of churches, organizations and individuals committed to the inclusion of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender persons in the full life and mission of Baptist churches.” In an article entitled “Some Answers to the Most Common Questions about God’s GLBT [gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgendered] Children” from the Summer 2000 edition of The InSpiriter, she counseled homosexuals to “ask the Holy Spirit to give you a sense of God’s timing” about “coming out” of the closet.
Dan Kimball says,
“Because this is such a huge issue in our culture, and because all of the tension and discussion on this issue is over what the Bible says about it, we can no longer just regurgitate what we have been taught about homosexuality. ... Homosexual attraction is not something people simply choose to have, as is quite often erroneously taught from many pulpits” (They Like Jesus but Not the Church, pp. 137, 138).
Philip Yancy, one of the most popular evangelical writers today, is very loud about his non-judgmental attitude toward homosexuality. In a 2004 interview with Candace Chellew-Hodge for Whosoever, a homosexual publication, Yancy said,
“When it gets to particular matters of policy, like ordaining gay and lesbian ministers, I’m confused, like a lot of people (“Amazed by Grace,” Whosoever online magazine).
If one simply stands on the Bible, there is nothing to be confused about. The problem is that Yancy is not standing strictly on Scripture, and this is typical of popular evangelical writers today. As Gary Gilley observes:
“Yancy has a fundamental flaw that runs throughout all of his writings. He doesn’t always draw his thoughts and principles form Scripture. His sources are more likely to be great saints from the past (occasionally from the present), his own reasoning, and experience. He surely quotes C.S. Lewis as often as the Apostle Paul or Jesus. ... This serious flaw of not basing his concepts squarely upon the Scriptures eventually leads Yancy astray. Yancy does not know the difference between tolerance and arrogance, between grace and license (a study of 1 Cor. 5 would be helpful to him), between boldness and harshness. By Yancey’s definitions John the Baptist and Elijah would be men of ‘ungrace,’ but God did not seem to think so. Yancy also does not know the difference between ministering to sinners and condoning sinful lifestyles. Certainly Jesus loved and spent time with prostitutes, but he did so to call them to repentance, not to accept their way of living. Yancy’s method of dealing with a homosexual, who is also a church leader, may seem like grace to him, it may seem like what Jesus might do, but it is clearly out of sync with the teachings and examples of Scripture” (Review of Yancy’s What Is So Amazing about Grace by Gary Gilley, Southern View Chapel, resources, n.d.).
Yancy promotes his confused view of homosexuality in his bestselling book What’s So Amazing about Grace. Yancy describes his close non-judgmental relationship with Mel White, who left his wife, breaking his solemn marriage vows, to pursue a homosexual lifestyle. Yancy has more to say against alleged “Christian hate” toward homosexuality than he does about homosexuality itself. Yancy even accompanied White in a “gay pride” parade in Washington D. C. in March 1987. While he was shocked by the behavior of Christians who were protesting the event, Yancy commended the response by the “gay Christians” that “Jesus loves us.”
Yancy was the keynote speaker at the Gay Christian Network’s annual Mountain Top Experience in January 2011. The other main speaker was “Rev.” Ann Phillips who “has been married for four years to her soulmate, Heather Wayne.” Obviously Yancy will not be condemning their unrepentant sin.
In a sermon entitled “When Gracie Met Truthy,” preached on April 15, 2012, Southern Baptist mega-church pastor Andy Stanley preached an unscriptural grace and an unscriptural position on homosexuality. He described a couple in his church who divorced when the wife discovered that her husband was in a sexual relationship with another man. Instead of disciplining the man, the church allowed the homosexual couple to move to another “campus” of North Point Church and work together as a “host” team. They were allowed to do this until it was discovered that one of the men was still married and therefore was “living in adultery” (Al Mohler, “Is the Megachurch the New Liberalism?” May 1, 2012). The homosexuality was apparently never an issue. Stanley told of how the wife showed “forgiveness” by bringing all of the parties to a Christmas service (her and her daughter, the former husband and his homosexual partner and that man’s daughter). But proper forgiveness as defined scripturally requires repentance (Luke 17:3). Stanley is promoting the psycho-heresy of “unconditional forgiveness,” which is blind emotional mysticism. (See The God of End-time Mysticism, a free eBook available from Way of Life, http://www.wayoflife.org.) This is not surprising, since Andy’s father, Charles, has promoted psycho-heresies for many decades. Andy concluded by telling the congregation that because of the cross Jesus does not condemn men, even if they cannot or do not leave their life of sin. This flies in the face of Jesus’ teaching that those who do not believe are condemned already (John 3:18) and that if men do not repent they cannot be saved (Luke 13:3-5). Stanley has replaced biblical “grace” with cheap antinomian license, which is the “grace” that is acceptable to the crowds who love mega-churches today. Contrast Paul’s teaching on grace as follows:
“For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works. These things speak, and exhort, and rebuke with all authority. Let no man despise thee” (Titus 2:11-15).
Bible believers don’t have to “wrestle” over the issue of homosexuality, because God has already settled the matter in His Word. To take a dogmatic position is not a matter of pride or hate or “homophobia”; it is a matter of obedience to the Almighty, of fearing God more than man, of building one’s worldview on biblical truth rather than cultural whims, of living by faith rather than feeling.
Homosexuality and lesbianism are condemned in Romans 1:24-28 in the plainest manner. It is called “dishonour” (1:24), “vile affections” (v. 26), “unseemly” (v. 27), and “a reprobate mind” (v. 28).
When it comes to church membership, the fundamental issues are repentance and conversion.
Homosexuals should be as welcome to attend our churches and hear the Word of God preached as any other sinners and they should be invited to God’s free salvation like any other sinners, but they cannot be church members or serve in the ministry unless they repent and give evidence of biblical conversion. The same is true for adulterers and thieves.
Those who are born again are taught to put away all such things.
“Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God. And SUCH WERE SOME OF YOU: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God” (1 Corinthians 6:9-11).
In this passage we see that the members of the church at Corinth had been guilty of homosexuality as well as many other sins, but they had been converted. The homosexuality is spoken of in the past tense.
According to the Bible, the only legitimate place for the sexual relationship is holy matrimony (Hebrews 13:4). Anything else is condemned as fornication, which is a grave sin. And nowhere in Scripture is marriage defined as anything other than the union of one man and one woman in holy covenant before God and man.
God will save any sinner, regardless of what sin he is guilty of. The blood of Christ is sufficient, but God demands repentance from sin and faith in Christ’s cross work. Jesus twice warned, “except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish” (Luke 13;3, 5).
This is not a complicated issue. It has only been complicated by the attempt of some to justify their sin and by the apostasy of “evangelicalism” in our day which refuses to separate from the world and is therefore influenced by the world.
Proverbs 6:23 For the commandment is a lamp; and the law is light; and reproofs of instruction are the way of life: