Helpful Words from a Gay Christian on Homosexuality and the Bible

I always find it helpful and refreshing to hear from Christians who are gay who decided to surrender their sex lives to the design God lays out in the Bible.  I say this is refreshing because the alternative message you hear in the “gay Christian debate” is to make Scripture say what you want it to…saying whatever it needs to to allow you to do what you want sexually.  It’s certainly much more difficult to take the first view than it is the second.  In fact, I’m downright inspired by those who take the first view.  It reminds me that we are all in the same boat.  I’m not gay, but I do struggle in my marriage sometimes.  And I struggle with my sexual purity.  I struggle with how I’m wired to want to do things the Bible says are wrong.  I’m inspired by my gay brothers-in-Christ like Jim Decke, Mike Lado, Wesley Hill, and Christopher Yuan and many others who have put the Bible first over the flesh desires of their sexuality.  If they can do it, so can I. 

I attended a workshop by Christopher Yuan on Tuesday about homosexuality that I found to be very helpful.  Christopher lived many years as a sexually active gay man prior to receiving Christ as his Savior while serving time in prison for drug crimes.  Upon accepting Christ, Christopher also surrendered his sex life to God’s commands in the Bible.  Christopher is now in his 40’s and is single and celibate.  After getting out of prison, Christopher attended Moody Bible Institute and is now a professor there.  He is co-author (along with his mother) of Out of a Far Country: A Gay Son’s Journey to God, A Broken Mother’s Search for Hope.  Here are some great tidbits I took from Christopher’s talk:

 

    • Unconditional love is not the same as unconditional acceptance of your behavior
    • There are two ways to view the Bible:
      • One is the traditional view which looks at Scripture first and experience second.  This is the view Yuan, Hill, Lado and Decke all take.
      • The second is what Yuan calls the revisionist view which looks at experience first and Scripture second.  This is the view taken by gay Christian authors like Justin Lee, Matthew Vines and others whose conversation typically begins with “I’m gay and I love Jesus.  I’ve prayed he will take this away, he hasn’t; therefore he wants me to live this out.”  It starts with how they feel and then goes to Scripture after that and reads it through that lens; reading what they want to hear.
    • We all have an orientation to live against what the Bible says in one way or another
    • The secular version of love really just means “don’t judge me.”  This definition dichotomizes love and truth, which is impossible.  The biblical version of love doesn’t do this.  When secular people talk about love they are usually talking about the Bible would call compassion, which is the wrong definition.
    • The Church needs to make sure we are convicted about our own sin
    • One sin is not better than another
    • Conviction of our own sin leads to humility; and the gospel is best expressed through humility
    • Marriage isn’t more important than singleness.  If our message to gays is to walk away and be single, do we have a healthy place for singles to thrive in our churches?  We give the impression that singleness is equated to loneliness.  How do all fairy tales end?  They get married!  Marriage is an idol
    • Don’t make singleness a consolation price. Singleness is a gift, 1 Corinthians 7:7.  Paul doesn’t use the regular word for “gift”, he used the greek word “charisma” which means “spiritual gift”, echoing Ephesians 5.  In Eph 5, we have spiritual gifts FOR THE CHURCH.  
    • “Heterosexuality” is a broad category, with many things within it that the Bible condemns as sin — heterosexuality is not God’s standard!  God’s standard is holy sexuality – if you’re married this means complete faithfulness to your spouse of the opposite sex.  If you’re single, this means complete faithfulness to abstinence. 
    • change is not the absence of struggles, but change is the freedom to choose holiness in the midst of our struggles
    • Be compassionate toward gays and lesbians, especially Christian ones.  Many think God hates them, are in a deep depression, wish they were never born and/or contemplate suicide because of this.
    • Expect this to be present in your congregation
    • Newsflash: we have sinners in our congregation
    • We need to have zero-tolerance on bullying and need to stop gay jokes – we have to wonder why the public schools are spearheading this not us
    • Give the good news, not the bad news — don’t single out the homosexual sins from the lists of sins in the Bible
    • When someone confides in you that they are gay, thank them for trusting you.  Tell them they’re not alone.
    • Our identity is in Christ, our sexuality should never define us
    • we don’t read the Bible and pray to get rid of the difficulties, we read the Bible and pray so that when difficulties come, we can remain faithful
    • Encourage God honoring same-sex friendships  – show how people love one another in non sexual ways — at the core of sexuality is a desire for intimacy from those of the same gender.  it’s a legitimate need——so how can we help foster this?
    • Do not compare this to addiction, pedophilia, murder, etc.
    • Do not say “lifestyle” or “choice” –ppl who are gay do not see this is something they do, they see it as something they are
    • Don’t say “love the sinner hate the sin”
    • Show the gay community we don’t hate them.  Build relationships.
    • Listen.  Be patient and persistent.
    •  “I didn’t leave gay relationships because i thought they were so bad, i left them because i found something better and his name is Jesus”

Christopher also has book reviews on the most popular books from gay Christians who say active gay sexual lifestyles are okay with the Bible:

My posts on homosexuality on AtACrossroads.net, in order of oldest to most recent:

Related Posts by Noah:

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7 responses to Helpful Words from a Gay Christian on Homosexuality and the Bible


  1. Looking for input on how to handle someone who claims to be a Christian yet identifies herself as a lesbian and does not accept that it is a sin (admits that she goes to a liberal church). Really not sure what to say to this person.


    • What you say to her will mean little compared to how you love her. Would go as far as saying that there is little you can say that will convince her . . .find that what convinces the head often doesn’t penetrate to change the heart. Don’t know the lady or her life or her story but do know being Christian means something valuable to her if she’s still there. There’s battles she’s been thru within to hold to Jesus as a gay person if it’s Jesus she’s after. While it’s not helping that some churches now saying it’s OK to be gay, maybe they just gave her rest from the battles that she didn’t find in other churches who didn’t give her Jesus. Being gay and wanting with all that’s in you for God to change you straight, when he doesn’t, and when you can’t give up Jesus, it’s really a powerful temptation to stop pressing for being pure when church says that purity includes same sex. But the rest is short-lived if it’s Jesus she’s after. . . true rest is only found in a living way in Christ.

      Have read other of your posts and know you have a heart for the Lord, and not thinking you meant it that way, but it’s not about handling her. As much as it is possible in as many ways as possible, love her and let your conversations with her center around Jesus and the reality of him being present. . . convince her of the beauty of Jesus rather than what’s wrong with homosexuality. Having her heart all in with Jesus, it will be Jesus thru the Spirit who will convince her. But you know what man, realizing this went long and I’m probably mapping on personal that has nothing to do with your friend. . . . if so, take what’s good.


    • The hardest people to talk to about Scripture on the topic of homosexuality are active gays and lesbians who are professing Christians. Because you can’t just love them without judgment like you would a non-Christian, so I understand your uncertainty of what to say. In the situation you mention, she is admitting to have a liberal view of Scripture so at least you can identify that. At the end of the day, you’ll probably just have to point out you are reading two different Bibles and then treat her like you would a heterosexual liberal Christian. And you have to remember, you aren’t going to argue her into changing. I think you can expose her to Christians like Christopher Yuan who are wired like her but are holding to the Bible, at least so she knows this is an option. If she believes the Bible is true, but takes the hermeneutic that makes it sound like the Bible says an active gay lifestyle is okay, you can show her textually how flimsy of an argument that is (something Yuan does well). But if she doesn’t think the Bible is true on a foundational level, then that’s not really going to get you anywhere.

      I like Alan makes some very helpful points on this thread as far as the relational side of things go.


      • All weekend couldn’t shake two things you wrote and hoping you can help me make sense of things. Here and on the Bizzle post you mentioned the relational component of love. Taking that to mean that we’re genuinely engaged with someone. . . that they enter the heart. The other is “Because you can’t just love them without judgment like you would a non-Christian…” Taking judgment to be measuring things according to the truth rather than something harsher like passing sentence cause you just seem that way. Even taking it that way, not sure I’m following/agreeing with what you’re saying. Background to my comment is believing that truth matters as the basis to things. The Spirit can only work along the line of truth. . . there’s no life or growth except in truth.
        Having said that, with how it treats others the church doesn’t do truth well at all both in and outside the body. Individually as members and together as church, truth = doctrine often trumps love and acts like a wall rather than a door between the church and the world. It’s not just the extremes of a Westboro baptist who use the bible as a cover for hate, it’s also the hard hearts of the KJV only who damn their brothers who find Jesus in a different translation, or the Calvanist who closes his heart to the Arminian – or vice versa- all due to their allegiance to the ‘truth.’ Truth that’s just held but is unliving always is unloving and experienced as judgmental. It’s different with Jesus, he is Truth and what he said is only Truth, but even the hard things he spoke were living and made a difference.
        My concern with what you wrote is that the church is set on the truth/judgment thing but misses/lacks love. . . that relational component of heart opening to others. Not sure of the other components, but without that thinking there’s a short circuit to loving others. Thinking we/church need that to be able to speak to others in and out of the church. . . that church would impact greater if it cared as much about having open hearts as it did about being correct. Thinking when we meet Jesus, how much we loved will mean more than how much we knew. Not so much disagreeing with you as much as wondering if the life of the church would be more vital if we loved those in the church with less judgment.


  2. https://www.gaychristian.net/justins_view.php
    https://www.gaychristian.net/rons_view.php
    Maybe read these articles. Its not really up to you to have an opinion one way or the other about ANYONE’S spiritual life. Its between them and God, If a gay person is Christian they are just that, Christian. Be happy that they know God and be on your way.


    • Hi anonymous, I appreciate your heart but you are leaving out a major ingredient: the Bible. I have read Justin Lee’s book “Torn” and while I empathize with his story, he changes the Bible. He makes it say something it simply doesn’t. Christopher Yuan who this blog article is about reviews Lee’s book here: http://www.thegospelcoalition.org/article/torn — Yuan is also gay, but he holds to the Bible, whereas Lee doesn’t. We aren’t giving an opinion about someone’s spiritual life, as you word it, we are just saying what the Bible says. Yes, it’s between them and God, but God has given us the Bible and as Christians, we are allowed to point out what the Bible says when there are people like Lee who are falsely saying what they want the Bible to say, but it doesn’t. If they don’t believe the Bible, they should just say so instead of trying to change what the Bible says. What I mean is, if there’s something in the Bible Lee doesn’t agree with, he should just say “I believe in everything in the Bible except this part” rather than saying “I believe the entire Bible and let me explain what this part means…” when that’s not what the Bible is saying. I’m not saying he isn’t a Christian — there are lots of people who reject portions of the Bible that are probably still Christians, that is the part between them and God, but there is a difference between someone who is believes the entire Bible and someone who doesn’t and when someone is manipulating the Bible, it’s okay for us to say so, in fact the Bible tells us to say so.

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