Monday, January 12, 2015

No Surprise, But Heartbreaking

Another friend who had served in the trenches of ex-gay ministry has just "come out" as gay, or possibly bisexual.  Yes, I'd known him back when I worked in those trenches, and have stayed in touch through various social media platforms. And, although I knew this man has  been involved in an Emergent Church these past few years, I'd rather assumed that he still recognized homosexuality as a sin and that he  continued to oppose same sex marriage.

On the other hand, his admission doesn't really surprise me, given the people of compromise in his circle. I'd been so amazed and proud of him when Exodus International imploded a few years ago because he'd maintained the biblical position on homosexuality. At least, for the most part.

His embrace of homosexuality in itself troubles me, but no more than it troubles me that another friend of mine has been making a series of rebellious choices in her life. Homosexuality dishonors the Lord, just as many other sinful attitudes and behaviors dishonor Him. So, while my friend's decision to once again label himself as a gay man breaks my heart, I realize that it merely represents a deeper problem.

Both friends have approached the Lord expecting Him to fix their circumstances. Over the past four decades, the Gospel has been slowly eclipsed by false promises of emotional well-being, demoting Jesus from His rightful place as King of kings and Lord of lords to the menial role of Cosmic Bellhop. And when He doesn't make us feel better or remove our struggles with lust, anger, depression or whatever, we turn to our own methods of coping with the pain.

The visible church has exchanged sound doctrine for experience. And when experience lies to us, telling us to accept homosexual impulses, reject the counsel of more mature Christians and seek lifestyles that focus on pleasure, we end up either distorting God's Word or abandoning it altogether. And Scripture pretty much says this turn to selfishness would happen.
But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty. For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power. Avoid such people. ~~2 Timothy 3:1-5 (ESV)
The news of my friend's return to homosexuality grieves me, but I can't say it entirely surprises me. I think the lack of  surprise--the awareness that the erosion of biblical preaching in his church and many other evangelical churches--troubles me more than his homosexuality in and of itself. May God have mercy.

2 comments:

  1. I think you hit on the root of the problem when you mentioned anger. Anger is absence of thankfulness, trust, and contentment. Lust is from raging against the good things God has for us, wanting more or other than what He has given. I see much anger in those who say they are "gay", claiming that they were "made that way" ...they weren't made that way by God, they were made that way by sin of the flesh, and we all have that in us. The way it is dealt with is through contentment with God's goodness, always looking to Him even when our flesh rages against the things of God wanting only things for itself, lust, envy, strife, self, self, self. It is sad, DebbieLynne, and a sign of the times.

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  2. The "times of difficulty" in 2 Timothy 3 are here, regardless whether everyone acknowledges it or not. There will be times when God does not fix our circumstances, and in those times, instead of showing perseverance, people will try to fix the problem themselves, by changing doctrine to suit them.

    This is where words such as "acceptance", and "tolerance" come from. A hundred years ago, these words would never have been spoken from the pulpit.

    God has no "acceptance" or "tolerance" for sin. The New Testament patriarchs would not compromise doctrine, even if it cost them their earthly lives. And for most of them, it did.

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