Here's something I failed to mention concerning the events this past Sunday that probably deserves mention. I did have one semi-negative reaction to what I did Sunday and it was not so much what I said, but the context in which it was presented. The person in question attended my church many years ago and she is part of an extended family that is still in attendance at my church. I assume she was home for the Thanksgiving holiday. I did not recognize her at first, but when she said her name, it all came flooding back.
She thanked me for what I did, but she was incensed at what followed in the sermon. I believe she is someone that has made her own peace with same sex attraction and believes that pursuit of such a life is OK with God and OK with Jesus. I'm not sure what Bible she reads, but it must not have been translated like mine.
This is not an unusual place for same sex attracted people that grew up in the church to be at in the midpoint of their lives. Because of what we are and what we desire and how it seems natural to us, we assume there is something wrong with the Bible and that God can't possibly be saying what is clearly written in scripture.
This, I believe, is a contextual issue. The Bible is not a book where you go looking for loopholes to justify behavior. The overriding theme of scripture is the brokenness and sinfulness of humanity and our need for God. Our flesh and our spirits are bent; we have a tendency toward rebellion because of it. We do not have to choose that path, but most of us eventually do so for one reason or another.
The only way to come even close to fixing that in this life is submission to God's will. That inevitably means that you will have to give up something. For me it was sex. It's the great turning away...repentance. We humans are loathe to admit that we might be wrong or that we need help or that we might need a good spiritual wash up. We justify behavior as it suits us and move forward approving of others that do the same.
The bottom line is, do you love Jesus, and if you do, then follow His commandments. It is not always easy, but it was not easy for Him to take up a cross either.
What do you believe...really?