What can a Christians say to a gay friend or about gay marriage while still showing the grace and love of God?
Love Speaks the Truth
We show our friends, family members, and co-workers no love at all if we don’t tell them the truth about what God’s Word says about homosexuality. The greatest act of love we can display to those we know is to speak the truth and not sugar coat what God says. It is God’s Word, not ours, that is important. If you knew someone was driving down a dangerous mountain road and there was a curve coming up and the bridge was out, wouldn’t you care enough to tell them the truth, regardless of whether they were offended or not? Surely you wouldn’t want them to get hurt or die. Love and grace is truth and compassion and warning someone that the Word of God says “the faithless, the detestable, as for murderers, the sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars, their portion will be in the lake that burns with fire and sulfur, which is the second death” (Rev 21:8). That is the fate of not just the unrepentant sexually immoral but all unrepentant liars, murderers, idolaters, and sorcerers (Rev 20:12-15).
What is Sin?
The Bible describes sin as the transgression or breaking of the law of God (1 John 3:4). Sin isn’t what we think is wrong or what we believe is immoral; sin is what God describes as the breaking of His moral law so read what God says about homosexuality; “For this reason God gave them up to dishonorable passions. 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” (Rom 1:26-27). Further, Paul asks the rhetorical question in 1st Cor 6:9 “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” but also includes “thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God” (1st Cor 6:10). That is why it is written that “The body is not meant for sexual immorality, but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body” (1st Cor 6:13).
Sexual Sin is Sin Against the Body
Paul reiterates that “The body is not meant for sexual immorality, but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body” (1st Cor 6:13) and “Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ? Shall I then take the members of Christ and make them members of a prostitute? Never” (1st Cor 6:15)! Whoever “is joined to a prostitute becomes one body with her? For, as it is written, “The two will become one flesh” (1st Cor 6:16). Sexual immorality covers a wide range of sexual behavior like prostitution, adultery, fornication (sex outside of marriage) and means any sex outside of a natural union between a husband and a wife which is why Paul warns us to “Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body” (1st Cor 6:18). If we sin like stealing or lying, that type of sin is outside of the body and even though it is still sin it is not directed against one’s own body and the other person’s body but “the sexually immoral person sins against his own body” and this includes both partners, whether they be male with female or same sex partners.
Those Not Inheriting the Kingdom of God
Here is a list of things that everyone who does such things without repenting and trusting in Christ will not be going into the kingdom; the “sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God” (1st Cor 6:9-10) and “the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, envy, drunkenness, orgies, and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God” (Gal 5:19-21). Those who teach that these things are acceptable are teaching things that are contrary to what the Word of God says (1st Tim 1:10). There are a lot of people who think they’re going to heaven that aren’t going there…which is why we must warn them out of a selfless sense of love and do it showing grace because before we were saved, we were headed for the very same fate.
Paul admonished Christians to “Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them. For it is shameful even to speak of the things that they do in secret” (Eph 5:11-12) so we must not take part is these sinful practices but we are also told to “expose them” and I don’t mean to expose and shame them before others but to expose them to the light of the Word of God (Eph 5:12-13). Pray for them, love them, show them the grace of God, but you must also warn them of the coming wrath of God, not just on the sexually immoral, but on all who refuse to repent and turn away and forsake their sins and then place their trust completely in Christ (Dan 12:2; Rev 20:12-15). The greatest act of love is to warn them that practice sexual immorality of any kind and those who falsely teach that it is acceptable to God that unless they also repent, they will eternally perish (Luke 13:3, 5). Loving someone enough to risk rejection, scorn, ridicule, and persecution displays more grace and love than you might believe. Just look at what Christ endured for us so that He might save us through His love and grace because at one time “such were some of you. But you [and I] were washed, [we] were sanctified, [we] were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God” (1st Cor 6:11).
Article by Jack Wellman
Jack Wellman is Pastor of the Mulvane Brethren church in Mulvane Kansas. Jack is also the Senior Writer at What Christians Want To Know whose mission is to equip, encourage, and energize Christians and to address questions about the believer’s daily walk with God and the Bible. You can follow Jack on Google Plus or check out his book Blind Chance or Intelligent Design available on Amazon.