Sometimes I share their wish.
Sadly, however, the visible church continues flirting with ideas and practices that pervert Scripture. I thought about this battle for doctrinal purity during my Bible reading today, remembering a dear friend who, in order to "reconcile" his homosexual urges with Christianity, has accepted the convoluted teachings of pro-gay theologians. Rather than suffer with desires that he should deny, he has loosened his stand on God's Word and acquiesced to the devil's plans.
8 Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. 9 Resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same kinds of suffering are being experienced by your brotherhood throughout the world. 10 And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you. ~~1 Peter 5:8-10 (ESV)This man no longer places his hope in heaven. Unwilling to suffer through the pain of unlawful sexual longings for the sake of pleasing Christ, he now makes God's Word subservient to his homosexuality.
Let me interject that I do sympathize, more than my friend realizes, with the anguish of sexual longings that run counter to the Bible's teaching. Yes, I'm happily married now, but my wedding didn't happen until a month before my 49th birthday. I had a couple (admittedly, only a couple) opportunities before my marriage to enjoy illicit sexual encounters, but I resisted them for the sake of honoring Christ. I didn't like denying my sexual desires, but I knew what Scripture teaches. Sometimes with tears, I obeyed the Lord instead of satisfying myself.
I know my friend experienced great emotional pain during the years he surrendered his homosexuality to the Lord. I regret that the ex-gay ministry we both served implicitly promised him that God would remove his same sex attractions. Understanding his emotional suffering, however, doesn't mean I have any intention of compromising Scripture in order to condone his homosexual relationship or consider his new "understanding" of God's Word.
My friend has led others away from Scriptural truth. He errs in the arena of homosexuality, while other evangelicals err in various ways. I don't hold the illusion that my small voice can call professing Christians to repentance. Still, I pray that the Lord might use me to uphold His truth. May I, in pointing to God's Word, encourage people to trust the Lord enough to live in faithfulness to Him.