Homosexuality: Cool to be Gay?
Sam Dilbeck tells this story: While substitute teaching a few years ago, I noticed two girls surrounded by an entourage of nervous boys. Intrigued, I waited to see if any of the boys would have enough courage to engage the girls. Finally a few of the boys did. They talked for a few minutes with a lot of awkward grins, hushed giggles, and hair twisting. I listened to their discussion and was appalled. The girls were trying to convince the boys that they were lesbians, not because they were, but because it was cool. That was in 1997, the year Ellen came out as the first openly gay lead character on primetime television.
Now, over a decade later, the influence of the homosexual agenda on American (and global) culture cannot be ignored. As the homosexual lifestyle gains acceptance, how should Christians react?
Overhauling Straight America
A decade before those sixth grade girls played chic lesbians, Marshall Kirk and Hunter Madsen outlined a strategic plan to change America’s perception of the homosexual lifestyle. “The first order of business is the desensitization of the American public concerning gays and gay rights…You can forget about trying to persuade the masses that homosexuality is a good thing. But if you can get them to think that it is just another thing with a shrug of their shoulders, then you battle for legal and social rights are virtually won.” (Kirk and Pill “The Overhauling of Straight America” 1987)
The Kirk-Madsen strategy contains six steps for normalizing homosexuality.
- Talk about “gay” and “gayness” as loudly and often as possible.
- Portray gays as victims, not aggressive challengers.
- Seek to give protectors of homosexuality a just cause.
- Control the image of homosexuals and make them look good.
- Make opponents of homosexual activity look bad.
- Raise money for their homosexual overhaul. They estimate that 10-15 million practicing homosexuals could raise a war chest of $20-30 million. Their plan also advocates soliciting funds from individuals and corporations that are sympathetic to the homosexual agenda.
TROY HAS FALLEN
This strategy has entered mainstream America like a Trojan horse and eroded her moral sensibilities. Today, anyone who opposes same-sex activity is vilified and labeled “homophobic.” Few people possess the courage to stand against their agenda—not in politics, not in the media, and not in the culture.
Even among Christians, gayness is growing more acceptable. The liberal theology of postmodernism calls into question the absolute condemnation of homosexuality. Spencer Burke, a postmodern theologian, laments the inability to question Biblical teaching, “What to earn a place on the… (Christian) black list, admit your uncertainty about homosexuality as a Biblically condemned sin.”
What Does the Bible Say?
The Bible clearly states that homosexuality is an unacceptable practice before God. God presided over the first marriage. He then gave the first command to Adam and Eve, “Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth” Genesis 1:28
In the Law of Moses, God clearly condemns homosexuality.
Leviticus 18:22 “You shall not lie with a male as with a woman; it is an abomination.”
Leviticus 20:13 “”If a man lies with a male as with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination; they shall surely be put to death; their blood is upon them.”
God’s attitude did not change in the millennia after the Law of Moses; the New Testament writers describe homosexuality as “against nature” and “unrighteous.”
Romans 1:26-27 “For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature; and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error.”
I Corinthians 6:9-10 “Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, not thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.”
God’s view is the same today as it was then.
Hebrews 13:8 “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.”
When we examine the historical evidence, we can see the Christians are far from being homophobic or advocates of hate-speech. Americans have the right and obligation to speak out about an unhealthy, unproductive, degenerate lifestyle that erodes the moral fabric of our society.
Homosexuality is not a new lifestyle; it has always existed as a moral issue. In America today, advocates of homosexuality have elevated it to a divisive political issue. Some insist that homosexuals have the “right” to marry, to adopt children, and to be accepted as normal by society and law. They shout “hate crime” when Christians teach that homosexuality is sinful.
Hiding behind Love
In our postmodern culture (postmodern: nothing can be said to be true, or right, or just), the term situational ethics seems to rear its head regularly. We don’t have to look much further than the local newspapers or TV shows to see it. There may be not a banner that floats across the screen alerting you of what is going on, but we see it practices broadly.
Did you know that a man by the name of Joseph Fletcher (1905-1991), once an Episcopal priest, is often given credit for pioneering the modern situational ethics model? As a matter of fact, the magic carpet that he rode, which America seems to have jumped on with him, was rooted in a misunderstanding of the love of God. It was Mr. Fletcher’s misunderstanding that as long as love is a person’ intention, then whatever the end is, the person is justified. He inappropriately pulled this philosophy from 1 John 4:8 where the apostle of love writes, “God is love.”
Love is a short, for-letter word with significant ramifications. However, it’s also a word that has come to have different definitions as we, as individuals, have grown and matured.
As a child, we would use the word as a response to someone taking care of us. This was a term of appreciation and gratitude.
When the teen years hit, the word took on a meaning more of feelings as, perhaps, we told that crush, “I love you>”
On the wedding day the word love became synonymous with the commitment we devoted to another person. Surely it encompassed the feelings too; however, from that moment on, “I love you” goes far beyond feelings. When we became parents, love as used with our children meant that we had to make some pretty tough decisions about rearing them, but always with their best interests in mind.
While love can definitely be an emotional response and a word of affection denoting a commitment, it is at times used as a reason for doing something. For instance, when we discipline our children, the reason is love. When a mother cares for her family, or a father goes to work, the motivation is love.
However, when it comes to the arena of morality, do we ever use love as a measure to making decisions about issues like euthanasia or in deciding if something like lying is appropriate or not? Some do, and it’s their “love” that drives them to rationalize what the correct answer is.”
Although love is wonderful and the Bible definitely speaks of the love of God towards us as the motivating factor in sending His Son to die on the cross (Jn. 3:16), the question remains, “Is that the determining factor for what is Truth?
The answer is both “yes” and “not completely.”
In the book of 1 John the word love occurs 46 times. We see John writing about the love that we are to have one for another, God’s love for us, and the love we are to have for God. If we study the concept completely with in the book of 1 John, specifically in 1 John 5:3, we read, “For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments. And His commandments are not burdensome.”
When studied in context, it doesn’t take us long to understand that John was not saying that love was separate from God being our standard. Actually, he reiterates that our love for God and His for us involves us keeping Him as the measure of right and wrong. He is to be our standard when it comes to the decisions that are easy and the decision that are difficult.
So, was Joseph Fletch correct when he came to his conclusion that as long as love is our motivation, the outcome will be correct? Only if that love is consistent with the source of love—God. Even with love as the motivation, if the action itself directly contradicts the inspired Word of God (homosexuality, euthanasia, lying, etc.) and thus violates the very nature of God, it is wrong and is sin.
There are many activities and behaviors that hide behind love; however, that doesn’t mean God accepts sin just because some try to justify it. This is one situation where love is not the answer. Love for God and Truth is the answer.
Sifting Through the Rubble
Religious leaders attempting to adapt the Church to modern culture want to accept aberrant behavior as normal. This includes finding ways to sanctify homosexuality. Truly, Troy has fallen, but what can be made of its ruins.
Pandora’s Box has been opened and will probably never be closet on the homosexual agenda. Like adultery, fornication, divorce, drunkenness, and a host of other sins, homosexuality has come out of the closet and become a visible part of a decadent society.
We must be Christians. The Christian response to sin has been the same since the cross. We cannot give people a reason to vilify us through rude and abusive behavior toward practicing gays (I Peter 3:16).
We must become friends to the sinners like Jesus (Matthew 11:19). We cannot ignore or treat them as repulsive. Instead, we must confront their sin with the compassion of Christ. Repentance is vital to their salvation, and we must do what we can to help them leave the clutches of sin and cleave to the Savior (James 5:20).
We must teach people about the dangers of sin—not just homosexuality, but all sin (Romans 6:23). We must be passionate about renouncing sin and proclaiming the Word of God “for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes.”
We must teach our children/grandchildren about the destructive nature of sin and seek ways to protect them from its grip. But at the same time, we must show them how to be merciful, patient and forgiving. We cannot instill the sin of hatred and prejudice in the next generation.
It took a couple of sixth grade girls to show how well the Kirk-Madsen plan has overhauled American thinking on homosexuality. Like any sin, homosexuality affects our culture, just as it affected the culture of the first century.
While the mechanism of its influence has changed, its results have not. Today, the world still needs Jesus and Christians are His ambassadors to the world. We must stand opposed to sin while reaching out with the power of grace. May we have the strength to confront the sin, compassion to accept the sinner, and the wisdom to convert souls.
Think Magazine, April 2009. Writers, Sam Dilbeck, Joe Wells and Luke Griffin sited.