10 Things Jesus Had to Say about the Sexual Sin Debate
Shane Idleman | Contributor to ChristianHeadlines.com.
My hope is that readers will read the entire article before drawing conclusions. I have nothing but compassion for those trapped in sexual sin. Those who strongly believe in the Bible and God’s will regarding sexual behavior also strongly believe in unconditional love and forgiveness. To say that authentic Christians hate or fear those trapped in the homosexual lifestyle demonstrates a gross misunderstanding of the Christian faith. To “confront in love” simply comes from a desire to honor God and to truly love and care for others. The ability to relate to people on their level, show genuine concern, and love them regardless of their lifestyle is the mark of true Christianity.
In case you don’t continue reading, let me offer some encouragement: if you’re hopeless, depressed, and confused, look to the One who created you. He has the answers. No matter what you have done, you have the ability to turn to Christ and start anew: “If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved” (Romans 10:9). “If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come” (2 Corinthians 5:17).
1. WE NEED A REVIVAL OF THE TRUTH.
It’s no surprise that the church, and our nation, desperately need to hear “the voice of one crying in the wilderness” to awaken, convict, and restore. It was not so long ago that we were concerned about “the fall of America.” America cannot fall because she has already fallen. We are now picking up the pieces of a broken nation reflected in our laws, lives, families, and children. America’s moral heartbeat has ceased because we cut off the source of life. We need resuscitation, renewal, and revival of the truth.
2. WE MUST SPEAK THE TRUTH IN LOVE.
When people, groups, denominations, or movements depart from absolute truth, and thus, quench and grieve the Spirit of God, they become mechanical in their approach to Christianity and lose the ability to guide. The Word of God is not in their hearts “like a burning fire” (Jeremiah 20:9), but relative, powerless, and debatable. This is what we see today.
Unfortunately, those who are sounding the alarm are often categorized as irrational, judgmental, bigoted, and intolerant. But how can we warn if we won’t confront, correct if we won’t challenge, and and contend if we won’t question? We must speak the truth in love…the Bible is crystal clear on sexual sin, including homosexuality.
3. PRAYER IS ESSENTIAL.
Why is there a lack of conviction today? The reason may not be in the pew, but in the pulpit. Much depends on the prayer life of the preacher. Pastors, preachers, and teachers must spend extended time in prayer to be truly effective—God prepares the messenger before we prepare the message. Luther’s motto, “He that has prayed well has studied well,” rings true.
4. WE NEED REPENTENCE.
I’m convinced that the majority of the churches in America are seeking to please the masses rather than convict. Judgment is never mentioned; repentance is rarely sought; and sin is often excused. We want to build a church rather than break a heart; be politically correct rather than biblically correct; coddle and comfort rather than stir and convict. This leaves people confused and deceived because we teach and live a form of Christianity void of repentance…void of truth.
5. BIBLICAL STANDARDS OF MORALITY ARE STILL VALID TODAY.
The “moral” laws in the Old Testament such as killing, stealing, lying, adultery, sexual immorality, and so on are all valid today. Jesus referred often to the Old Testament, and said that He didn’t come to abolish it, but to fulfill it. Although many of the ceremonial and dietary laws of the Old Testament do not apply today, the moral laws do. They are as significant today as they have been throughout history. For example, Leviticus 20:13 states, “If a man lies with a male as he lies with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination….” To suggest that this verse is invalid today is to advocate the dangerous practice of redefining or deleting what God has said. Jesus referred to the Old Testament often in regard to moral behavior.
The consequences of wrong actions may have changed, but the moral implications remain the same. For instance, even though we no longer stone to death those who commit adultery, this does not mean that adultery is acceptable or any less dangerous. Adultery is wrong even though there aren’t legal consequences.
6. WE ARE ALL BORN SINFUL.
Jesus condemned “all” sexual activity outside of marriage between a man and woman when He said, “Out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications…these defile a man” (Matthew 15:19). Jesus was implying that all sexual activity outside of marriage between a man and a woman is harmful and immoral. The word “fornication” in the Greek is porneia; where the word “pornography” comes from. We cannot say, “But I was born this way,” because we were all born to lie, cheat, lust, and deceive, but this doesn’t make it right…it makes us sinful and in need of a Savior.
7. SILENCE DOES NOT EQUAL APPROVAL.
An argument cannot be based solely on silence. To suggest that Jesus approved of homosexuality simply because He did not use the term “homosexual,” is to imply that He approved of necrophilia, pedophilia, incest, and bestiality. But, of course, we know better.
8. PEOPLE HAVE TURNED AWAY FROM GOD AND FROM DOING GOOD.
Other passage in the New Testament are clear on this issue as well. Romans 1:18-32 and 1 Corinthians 6:1-20 are good places to start. In short, mankind did not see fit to acknowledge God and they suppressed the truth; therefore, God gave them over to a depraved mind—to do those things which are not proper. Homosexual behavior, and sexual sin in general, is comparable with dishonoring the body and turning from God. “The sexual disordering of the human race is a judgment of God for exchanging Him for the creature” (John Piper).
9. MARRIAGE IS BETWEEN ONE MAN AND ONE WOMAN.
Jesus said that since the beginning of creation, God created them male and female in order that they would be joined together and become one flesh. He adds, “Therefore what God has joined together, let not man separate” (Mark 10:9). Marriage between a man and a woman is God’s plan since creation. No matter how many laws are passed in favor of gay-marriage, it will not change God’s mind. Man often rebels against God; this is nothing new.
10. JESUS OFFERS ABUNDANT LOVE AND FORGIVENESS.
In closing, Jesus would often speak out against sin, but His love and mercy also reached out to those who regretted and hated their condition. Forgiveness is a mark of genuine faith. We should have compassion for those who struggle with same-sex attraction because we all struggle with sin, but at the same time, we should not condone or excuse this type of sin any more than we condone or excuse any other sin.
Pope Francis appoints pro-LGBT Cdl Tobin to oversee Catholic education
Thu Jun 6, 2019 – 9:34 pm EST. LIFESITE NEWS
NEWARK, New Jersey, June 6, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) — Newark archbishop Cardinal Joseph Tobin, who has come under fire for statements at odds with Church teachings about sexuality, was named by Pope Francis as a member of the Congregation for Catholic Education.
In addition to Cardinal Tobin, Cardinals Luis Ladaria and Désiré Tsarahanzana and Bishop Joseph Ðình Ðúc Ðao were named to the congregation. The Congregation for Catholic Education is responsible for communicating and ensuring the implementation of the directives of the Holy See at Church-affiliated schools, institutes, colleges, and universities.
Cardinal Tobin said in a nationally televised program in April that Catholic teachings on same-sex attraction are “disordered” and “unfortunate” and use “hurtful” language. On NBC’s Today show, Tobin suggested that the Church is about to change its teachings: “The Church, I think, is having its own conversation about what our faith has us do and say with people in relationships that are same-sex. What should be without debate is that we are called to welcome them.”
In the interview, show host Anne Thompson introduced discussion about homosexuality by praising Tobin, saying his “outreach to the LGBTQ community is in the mold of Pope Francis, despite some Church teaching.” She asked Tobin, “But how can you welcome people that you call ‘intrinsically disordered’?” Tobin answered, “Well, I don’t call them ‘intrinsically disordered.’”
She countered, “But isn’t that the Catechism of the Catholic Church?”
“That is,” Tobin said and added, “It’s very unfortunate language. Let’s hope that eventually that language is a little less hurtful.”
Just before assuming leadership of the Newark archdiocese, Tobin welcomed homosexual activists to the Cathedral-Basilica of the Sacred Heart, who came on a so-called “LGBT Pilgrimage.” Fr. James Martin, S.J., whom many have criticized for his statements supportive of homosexuality, congratulated Tobin on his participation in “LGBT Pilgrimage,” tweeting, “Bravo!” Tobin was one of four American bishops who endorsed Martin’s controversial book Building a Bridge. Martin suggested in 2018 that Tobin is one of the “gay-friendly” prelates appointed by Pope Francis.
Under Tobin’s authority is Our Lady of Grace in Hoboken, which will hold what it touts as its “2nd Annual Pride Mass in Support of Our LGBTQ Brothers and Sisters.” Scheduled for June 30, the morning Mass is being advertised in LGBTQ media. The parish is encouraging those attending the Mass to participate in the gay pride march in New York City later that day.
Speculation has swirled since last year regarding a tweet Tobin posted and later deleted that read, “Nighty-night, baby. I love you.” Tobin claimed that the tweet was meant for his sister. He was later the focus of rumor when he reportedly confirmed that he had recently housed a young Italian actor in his residence for a period of time.
Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò, a former papal ambassador to the United States, stated in his famous letter last year: “The appointments of Blase Cupich to Chicago and Joseph W. Tobin to Newark were orchestrated by
McCarrick, [Cardinal Oscar Rodríguez] Maradiaga and [recently deposed Washington, D.C. archbishop Cardinal Donald] Wuerl, united by a wicked pact of abuses by the first, and at least of coverup of abuses by the other two. Their names were not among those presented by the Nunciature for Chicago and Newark.”
While Catholics are called on not to subject persons with homosexual attractions to unjust discrimination, the Church has been clear that homosexual acts are not morally acceptable. Teaching that homosexual acts are “acts of grave depravity” and “intrinsically disordered,” the Catechism of the Catholic Church states:
They are contrary to the natural law. They close the sexual act to the gift of life. They do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarity. Under no circumstances can they be approved.
In addition, the Church teaches that homosexual inclinations are “objectively disordered” and a “trial” for the persons so inclined.