The issue of homosexuality, specifically gay marriage, has been focused on a lot lately, especially as a hot topic of discussion in the news. North Carolina voted to define marriage as between a man and a woman recently, to be followed a few days later by President Obama giving his unequivocal support of same-sex marriage. At the conventions a few weeks ago, the Democratic Party officially endorsed same-sex marriage in its 2012 platform, while the Republican Party officially condemned it. Watch the commentators on TV and read the blogs on the Internet, and you will be exposed to views on this subject ranging from complete acceptance and/or apathy to complete, unconditional rejection and/or hatred. I’ve found it interesting that the Bible is often used by both sides to justify their views. As a result, it can be easy to either misconstrue or be completely ignorant of what God’s Word says on the matter. We are told to accurately handle God’s Word (2 Tim. 2:15), and the way to do so on an issue like this is to simply take it for what it says with honest and open hearts rather than with preconceived prejudices (Luke 8:15).
Some say that the Bible promotes hatred of homosexuals. They say that Christians are taught to speak hatefully to homosexuals, or even to promote or partake in acts of violence against them. I have not found that to be true. Yes, there are Old Testament passages which both condemn homosexuality and pronounce the penalty of death upon those who commit it (Lev. 20:13). However, the Old Testament law of Moses was taken out of the way when Christ died (Col. 2:14-16) and the New Testament has taken its place (Heb. 8:6-13). This New Testament, the law of Christ, is what we are under today, and the New Testament in no place teaches that Christians are to harm or speak hatefully to anyone (Eph. 4:29-32; Matt. 7:12), including homosexuals. Therefore, the Bible promotes love of homosexuals, not hatred.
That said, it is clear that while the Bible promotes the love of all men, including homosexuals, it does not promote the acceptance of the homosexual lifestyle. The New Testament clearly condemns the practice of homosexuality (Rom. 1:26-27; 1 Cor. 6:9-10; 1 Tim. 1:9-10). Therefore, the Bible teaches that Christians are to love homosexuals, but not condone or approve of homosexuality. There is a distinct difference. You can love someone and yet not approve or condone what they choose to do. Good parents do this with disobedient children all the time. In fact, that’s how God is with us.
The Bible also makes it clear that homosexuals can become Christians, but only after they repent of the sin of homosexuality (1 Cor. 6:9-11). In the cited passage, Paul welcomes those who were once homosexuals (as well as those who were once idolaters, thieves, greedy, drunkards, revilers, and swindlers) into the church, but he made it clear that they were no longer involved in such sins. “And such WERE some of you…” Repentance – the cessation of sins, including the sin of homosexuality – is the key.
I recognize that this is not the most politically correct, “tolerant” message out there today. But do not be deceived. The Bible does not teach complete acceptance of homosexuality. It does not teach that one should be apathetic about the subject. However, it also does not teach hatred of homosexuals, or unconditional rejection regardless of repentance. God loved the whole world, including homosexuals. That’s why he sent his Son, Jesus, to die for us all (John 3:16). It is up to us all, including those of us who are homosexual, as to whether or not we will accept that free gift of salvation through obedience to his will (Heb. 5:9).
When any of us who are sinners (and that would be all of us – 1 John 1:8) decide to accept God’s grace through obedience to his Word, he accepts us after we repent of our sins, and that is when we should accept each other – as Christians who have been washed clean of sin through the waters of baptism (Acts 22:16).
One of my favorite secular songs is Johnny Cash’s Walk The Line. I like that song because the lyrics speak of the great sacrifice a man would make for a woman, thus expressing his obvious love for her. While listening to that song the other day, I started to wonder how many of us could honestly say the words of this song about our relationship with God. As Christians, it’s easy to “talk the talk”…but do we “walk the walk”? Do we “walk the line”?
Think about it. The song opens by saying, “I keep a close watch on this heart of mine/I keep my eyes wide open all the time/I keep the ends out for the tie that binds…” That’s what God wants us to do for him (2 Cor. 13:5; 1 Thess. 5:1-11; 1 Pet. 5:8). If we’re willing to do it for people we love, surely we can do it if we love God more than them (Matt. 22:37). We do whatever we can to keep strong ties with those whom we love, but do we do the same for him? If our family or friends need us, we don’t hesitate to go to them…yet do we easily find excuses to not attend church, read our Bibles, and pray?
“I find it very, very easy to be true/I find myself alone when each day’s through/Yes, I’ll admit that I’m a fool for you…” Keeping true to God’s commandments is not burdensome unless our prideful selfishness makes it so (1 John 5:3). Yes, obeying him might make it seem like we’re alone in the world because the majority won’t obey him (Matt. 7:13-14) and will think us to be foolish (1 Cor. 1:18-31). Are we willing to confess Christ anyway (Matt. 5:10-16; 10:32-33)?
“As sure as night is dark and day is light/I keep you on my mind both day and night/And happiness I’ve known proves that it’s right…” So many have a dead faith in God, a faith not backed up by obedient works (James 2:14-26). God wants our faith to be sure, with all our heart (Acts 8:37), and the only way we get that faith is through daily and nightly meditation upon his Word (Rom. 10:17; Ps. 1:1-3). It will be that faith that brings true happiness (Prov. 10:28).
“You’ve got a way to keep me on your side/You give me cause for love that I can’t hide/For you I know I’d even try to turn the tide…” While God does not take away our free will (Josh. 24:15-18), he gives us plenty of motivational reasons to love him. We owe our very existence to him. He sent his Son to take away our sins through a horrible death. He offers us salvation from an eternal hell. What are we willing to do for Him (Rev. 2:10)?
“Because you’re mine/I walk the line.” He is our God…but are we truly his followers? If we love him, we will obey him (John 14:15). We will walk his line.
(Warning: This article will contain descriptions and pictures of aborted infants which are quite gruesome. Please do not read this article if you are easily offended or physically sickened by unedited pictures of violence done to human beings, or while in the presence of small children or those who have weak physical constitutions.)
Why do I say that? God is our Creator. He formed us while we were in the womb (Ps. 139:13-16; Job 31:15). He did not “knit” together a mere chemical activity, cellular growth, or other vague force like pro-abortionists claim the fetus to be. The Hebrew for the “unformed substance” in Ps. 139:16 that God saw has to do with the embryonic state, the first eight weeks after conception. So long before even the mother can feel life in her womb, God knows…and cares. He formed us in the womb, human beings in his own image. Jehovah was and is personally involved in our development while we were inside our mothers, so do you think he is pleased when we go out of our way to destroy the work that he made and cares for?
Exodus 21:22-25 gives us the answer to that question. God decreed that if a man harmed a pregnant woman who later gave birth and it was proven that any harm came to that unborn child due to the man harming her, then that man would pay back wound for wound that was inflicted upon the unborn child. And if the unborn child had died while in the womb and was delivered as a stillborn, then that man would pay with his life! “Life for life…” How could God say that if life doesn’t begin until birth like abortion proponents claim? You see, there islife in the womb, before birth…and so any taking of that life is an abomination before God. Babies, both while in the womb (Rom. 9:10-13) and after birth (Ezek. 18:1-20), are innocent…and God hates hands “which shed innocent blood” (Prov. 6:17).
So what is happening in our nation today – the mass killing of innocent life which takes place through abortion – is an irreverent assault on the unique work that God performs. It is an abomination to him, something that he hates not only because it destroys the work of his hands and the life that he gives, but also because of howit destroys that life.
Forgive my sarcasm, but what if Brian, Amy, and Melissa had realized what proponents of abortion are saying, that there are other “more civilized” ways to get rid of a baby?! If they had only possessed the “dignity” to have their babies “professionally” killed, they could have avoided arrest and bad publicity! When Amy and Melissa had first learned they were pregnant, they could have hired a “doctor” to employ a vacuum tube with a sharp blade attached to it, and he could have sucked the child from the womb, dicing it up into several pieces. Or, in their seventh and twelfth week of pregnancy, a “doctor” could have entered their wombs with a loop-shaped steel knife and sliced the placenta from the walls of the uterus and cut the baby’s tiny body into pieces.
Or, between the twelfth and eighteenth weeks of pregnancy, they could have had a “doctor” take an instrument very similar to sharp-toothed pliers and dismember the baby part by part until all parts were removed from their wombs. Brian, Amy, and Melissa could have also chosen in the sixteenth week of pregnancy to hire a “doctor” to insert a long needle through the mothers’ abdomens into the babies’ sacs and inject a solution of concentrated salt. The babies would have breathed in the salt and been poisoned by it, and the corrosive effect of the salt would have burned off the outer layer of their skin. An hour after those injections, their babies would have been dead, they would have then delivered dead children about a day later, and it would have been the “doctor” rather than the parents who would have thrown the corpse into a trash can.
Here’s how it happens. A “doctor” – while watching the infant’s heartbeat which isclearly registering on the monitor– actually delivers the baby’s body and arms, everything but his little head. Then, while the baby’s feet are still kicking, the “doctor” jams scissors into the baby’s skull. He then opens the scissors to enlarge the hole in the baby’s head. Of course, the impact of the scissors causes the baby’s arms to jerk out in a flinching, startled reaction, like a baby does when he thinks he might fall. However, the pain wouldn’t last too long, because the doctor would then stick a high-powered suction tube into the baby’s head and suck the baby’s brains out! The limp and lifeless body of that body would then be disposed of, leaving the parents free to leave the hospital and pursue their hopes and dreams!
Do you see the inconsistency here? Why are these people found guilty of crimes for killing their babies in gruesome ways outsideof the womb…but not if they had hired “doctors” to do pretty much the same thing to those same babies a few months earlier while insidethe womb? Where’s the consistency? Where’s the outrage? (Is. 5:20)
Reader, are you outraged by what you just read and saw? Are you sickened? Are you unhappy that you just read of and saw such terrible things? If you are unhappy for reading about them, I am sorry…but I made the decision to write so plainly about what happens in abortion procedures and show the gruesome results because there are too many of us, especially those in their 30’s and 40’s like me and the younger generation of teens and 20’s, who have not truly been told about what happens to a baby when it is aborted. If we are told, it is usually in a way that is extremely edited for content in order not to disgust. While this is understandable, what happens as a result is that too many of us look at the abortions of today in the same way that we look at the Holocaust of the Jews in the previous century…as a mildly unpleasant historical fact that we are far removed from. That needs to change if abortion is to stop in this country and in the world. We must hate abortion just as God hates it, and for the same reasons.
What can also help us hate the terrible deed of abortion like God hates it is when we understand why it is happening. James gives us one reason when he said, “You desire and do not have, so you murder…” (James 4:2). What do the parents of aborted babies desire that would lead them to murder their children? More financial security? More leisure? More education? More unrestrained sexual activity? More career options? Avoiding a child who may be handicapped? Less hassle for the next 18-25 years? All of us desire things and have goals…but may we work hard to never be so self-absorbed and covetous that we miss out on – or even purposefully kill – the most important things in life! (Heb. 13:5) When we love the world rather than God, we follow Satan rather than resisting him (Eph. 2:1-3; James 4:7). So let us work to have a heart that is deeply submitted to God, that reverences his word and work above all worldly self-enhancement (James 4:6). This will help us to look at things differently, react differently, want different things, and hate different things…the same things God wants and hates (Rom. 12:1-2).
God hates abortion, and so must we. We must not hate those who practice it, nor treat them in sinful ways (Rom. 12:17-18)…but we must hate the terrible deed itself, and do our best to not support in any way those who would practice or condone it (Rom. 1:32).