Wednesday, April 16, 2014

16 April 2014

“God Made Me Homosexual!”


“God Didn’t Make Anyone Homosexual!”

Our conversation was intense. In defensive frustration, Mark blurted out he was not accountable for his heterosexual indiscretions. “This is how God made me, Chuck. God hotwired my libido – I’m oversexed. I love Marie, but one woman is not enough for me.”

Mark was a member of the congregation of which I was the pastor, but his lifestyle was not reconcilable with his Christian profession. “But, Chuck, I believe in Jesus, and you can’t judge me.” Funny, I had not judged Mark. I only reminded him of the “Thou shalt not” of the Seventh Commandment (Ex. 20.14) and the words of 1 John 5:3 (“For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments. And his commandments are not burdensome.” [ESV, unless otherwise noted]) and 1 Corinthians 6:13 and 18 (“The body is not meant for sexual immorality, but for the Lord . . . [and] the sexually immoral person sins against his own body.”).

“I don’t judge you, Mark,” I said. “You’re correct; only God judges you, and, according to these words of the Bible, He has already judged you as dead even while you live. The lifestyle you have chosen is as compatible to God as fire is compatible to water.

As an aside to the words of 1 Corinthians 6.18 (“the sexually immoral person sins against his own body”), I once watched through the door-window of an isolation room in a hospital as a woman died from the effects of syphilis she contracted because of a lifestyle of heterosexual promiscuity. Another time, I sat beside the bed of a man who died from the complications of the AIDS he contracted because of a lifestyle of homosexual promiscuity. And, to finish Mark’s story, I know of three failed marriages and ex-wives and children who loath him because of his sexually immoral lifestyle.

As a pastor, I often heard the excuse of “God made me the way I am; I’m not a sinner but a victim.” Adam and Eve’s canard – it’s God’s fault (Gen. 3.8-14) – is old, but it is still being buffed shiny by use. So, when I hear the excuse of “God made me homosexual” in order to justify a God-forbidden sexual lifestyle, I am not persuaded. I have heard this excuse many times.

Well, we are now to the question, DID GOD MAKE PEOPLE HOMOSEXUAL?

Do you believe the Bible? If you do not accept the Bible as authoritative, then go your way and do as you please. Nothing I write will make any sense or be of any interest to you.

For those who believe the Bible, I ask you to examine what I write and see if it is faithful to the teaching of the Bible. Do I tell the truth? Do I reflect what the Scriptures teach?

The first thing God says about mankind is He made us “in his own image,” “male and female” (Gen. 1:27). Obviously, man and woman are made for each other, and, in our relationship of man and woman, we somehow reflect God’s “own image.” God made man and woman “fit for” (2:18) each other so that “a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh” (2:24). The Bible teaches nothing about man and man or woman and woman “becoming one flesh.”

As far as I can tell, before the giving of the Law to theocratic Israel, the most significant passage in the Old Testament dealing with homosexuality is Genesis 19:4-13. Homosexual assault is used to highlight and illustrate “the outcry against Sodom and Gomorrah is great and their sin is very grave” (Gen. 18:20). Genesis 19:4-13 reads in this manner:

"But before they retired for the night, all the men of Sodom, young and old, came from all over the city and surrounded the house. They shouted to Lot, “Where are the men who came to spend the night with you? Bring them out to us so we can have sex with them!”

"So Lot stepped outside to talk to them, shutting the door behind him. “Please, my brothers,” he begged, “don’t do such a wicked thing. Look, I have two virgin daughters. Let me bring them out to you, and you can do with them as you wish. But please, leave these men alone, for they are my guests and are under my protection.”

"“Stand back!” they shouted. “This fellow came to town as an outsider, and now he’s acting like our judge! We’ll treat you far worse than those other men!” And they lunged toward Lot to break down the door.

"But the two angels reached out, pulled Lot into the house, and bolted the door. Then they blinded all the men, young and old, who were at the door of the house, so they gave up trying to get inside.

"Meanwhile, the angels questioned Lot. “Do you have any other relatives here in the city?” they asked. “Get them out of this place—your sons-in-law, sons, daughters, or anyone else. For we are about to destroy this city completely. The outcry against this place is so great it has reached the LORD, and he has sent us to destroy it.”"

The story is not pretty. I do not like Lot. The story reveals how a dangerously corrupt society distorted Lot’s understanding of life. Indeed, the story of Lot is painful. Even one of God’s own is compromised by the moral darkness surrounding him, and his decisions regarding his daughters are nearly fatal to them – and terribly shameful to him. Thankfully, in 2 Peter 2:7, Lot is described as “righteous.” Without 2 Peter, we would not be sure.

Of the many sins of Sodom and Gomorrah, I do not know why homosexual assault is used to illustrate the depravity of a corrupt and doomed society. All sins are statements that God does not know what He is talking about. All sins reject God and declare the autonomy of man over against God. In this case, does the sin of homosexual assault particularly reveal the wickedness of a loathsome and egregious rejection of both God Himself and His plan for human sexuality? It does! However, the story does not say all homosexual acts are acts of assault. They are not. The story combines two sins, homosexuality and physical assault (murderous intent), in order to illustrate the depth of the moral corruption of Sodom and Gomorrah.

The role of the commandments, commands, precepts, statutes, decrees, rules, and laws found in Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy is for establishing the covenanted theocracy of Israel. The Ten Commandments act as a preamble. The other commandments, commands, precepts, statutes, decrees, rules, and laws inform the covenanted people how they are to live righteously before their God. By faith, they were called to be God’s people. The living out of their faith was obedience to God’s commandments, commands, precepts, statutes, decrees, rules, and laws regarding worship and lifestyle. In other words, in their theocratic setting, their obedience was both civic and religious. They did not distinguish between religious and civic obedience. Their worship of God was how they defined themselves as a nation, and failure to worship God and live according to the God-given morality was both denial of God and treason.

Their inward faith and outward obedience distinguished the Hebrew people as a “wise and understanding people.” One of the operative passages is Deuteronomy 4:5-8:

"See, I have taught you statutes and rules, as the LORD my God commanded me, that you should do them in the land that you are entering to take possession of it. Keep them and do them, for that will be your wisdom and your understanding in the sight of the peoples, who, when they hear all these statutes, will say, ‘Surely this great nation is a wise and understanding people.’ For what great nation is there that has a god so near to it as the LORD our God is to us, whenever we call upon him? And what great nation is there, that has statutes and rules so righteous as all this law that I set before you today?"

There are many regulations regarding sexuality in the Old Testament. Both homosexual acts and lifestyle are forbidden as an “abomination.” The following two passages are clear regarding homosexual sins. I do not know how the teaching could be clearer.

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.”

Deuteronomy 23.17 is a special regulation. It reads, “None of the daughters of Israel shall be a cult prostitute, and none of the sons of Israel shall be a cult prostitute.” Amongst the inhabitants of ancient Canaan, both heterosexual and homosexual promiscuity in the form of religious prostitution were incorporated into the worship of their gods. God’s gift of sexuality was twisted and debased into gross promiscuity in religious worship. Was this distortion a statement declaring “Our gods made us this way and so we worship our gods in our sexuality?”

The sin of homosexuality and a host of other sins brought the judgment of God on the Canaanite culture. In Leviticus 18.24-30, God instructs and warns His people in this manner:

"Do not make yourselves unclean by any of these things, for by all these the nations I am driving out before you have become unclean, and the land became unclean, so that I punished its iniquity, and the land vomited out its inhabitants. But you shall keep my statutes and my rules and do none of these abominations, either the native or the stranger who sojourns among you (for the people of the land, who were before you, did all of these abominations, so that the land became unclean), lest the land vomit you out when you make it unclean, as it vomited out the nations that was before you. For everyone who does any of these abominations, the persons who do them shall be cut off from among their people. So keep my charge never to practice any of these abominable customs that were practiced before you, and never to make yourselves unclean by them: I am the LORD your God."

The story of the history of God’s people as the nations of Israel and Judah is a story of rebellion. Instead of trusting God in faith and living according to His commandments, directives, and rules, God’s people rejected God as though He had not made them and knew nothing of how He made them to live. They turned to their own devices. Instead of rejecting the unrighteous ways of the nations around them, they championed them. They reversed God’s instructions regarding sex and embraced promiscuity as a means of worship and even made their sons and daughters cult prostitutes. Consider the following:

1 Kings 14:24 – “And there were also male cult prostitutes in the land. They did according to all the abominations of the nations that the LORD drove out before the people of Israel.”

1 Kings 15:12 – [King Asa] put away the male cult prostitutes out of the land and removed all the idols that his fathers had made.

2 Kings 23.7 – [King Josiah] also tore down the living quarters of the male and female shrine prostitutes that were inside the Temple of the LORD, where the women wove coverings for the Asherah pole. (NLT)

The unambiguous witness of the Old Testament is God did not make people homosexual. Homosexuality is a choice to disobey God’s command. Homosexuality is one of many sexual sins forbidden and described as sin and an abomination in the Old Testament. Those who say this is not the clear teaching of the Old Testament are inventing a meaning in the text of the Old Testament which is not there! This is an insubordinate reversal and defiant denial of what God says.

If someone claims the Old Testament teaching is unclear, the teaching of the New Testament on homosexual sins and lifestyle is crystal clear. There is nothing vague about the New Testament teaching.

Romans 1.18-32 is a dark litany of human ungodliness and unrighteousness. In the long list of sins in which “the wrath of God is revealed,” homosexuality is both listed and highlighted. How do you read Romans 1:18-32?

"For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth. For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse. For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Claiming to be wise, they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things.

"Therefore God gave them up in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, to the dishonoring of their bodies among themselves, because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever! Amen.

"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.

"And since they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God gave them up to a debased mind to do what ought not to be done. They were filled with all manner of unrighteousness, evil, covetousness, malice. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, maliciousness. They are gossips, slanderers, haters of God, insolent, haughty, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, foolish, faithless, heartless, ruthless. Though they know God’s righteous decree that those who practice such things deserve to die, they not only do them but give approval to those who practice them."

In 1 Corinthians 6:9-11, one of the acts of “unrighteousness” which excludes one from “the kingdom of God” is the homosexuality lifestyle. The homosexual lifestyle and along with a number of other lifestyles are spotlighted as rebellious acts which reject God and eschew His lifestyle-directives as odious. The passage reads:

"Or 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, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God."

According to 1 Timothy 1:8-10, the Law was given to reveal the sinfulness of human sin. In other words, the Law is not given to those who believe and obey it. The Law is given for “the lawless and disobedient” to inform them of God’s judgment so that they would repent and believe “the gospel of the glory of the blessed God.” The passage reads:

"Now we know that the law is good, if one uses it lawfully, understanding this, that the law is not laid down for the just but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and sinners, for the unholy and profane, for those who strike their fathers and mothers, for murderers, the sexually immoral, men who practice homosexuality, enslavers, liars, perjurers, and whatever else is contrary to sound doctrine, in accordance with the gospel of the glory of the blessed God with which I have been entrusted."

Sodom and Gomorrah are forever connected to the sin of homosexuality. Jude 7 is a grave warning against homosexual immorality gone awry, and reads in this manner:

"Just as Sodom and Gomorrah and the surrounding cities, which likewise indulged in sexual immorality and pursued unnatural desire, serve as an example by undergoing a punishment of eternal fire."

The undoubted teaching of the New Testament is that homosexuality is sexual sin. The undoubted teaching of the New Testament is the Christian is to put away ALL sexual sins.

1 Corinthians 6.18 – Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body.

1 Thessalonians 4.3 – For this is the will of God, your sanctification: that you abstain from sexual immorality.

Ephesians 5.3 – For you may be sure of this, that everyone who is sexually immoral or impure, or who is covetous (that is, an idolater), has no inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God.

Colossians 3.5 – Put to death therefore what is earthly in you: sexual immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry.

Well, we are back to the original question: does God make people homosexual? The Bible says homosexuality is sin. Sin is disobedience. Disobedience is always a choice not to obey what God says – a determination and declaration that the one disobeying is smarter and wiser that God. Homosexuality is a choice to disobey God in one’s sexuality. God does not make the individual disobey; the individual makes the individual disobey.

An honest student of the Bible acknowledges the above. Even Timothy Johnson, a pro-homosexual advocate, acknowledges the teaching of the Bible is homosexuality is forbidden as sin. Johnson writes,

"I think it important to state clearly that we do, in fact, reject the straightforward commands of Scripture, and appeal instead to another authority when we declare that same-sex unions can be holy and good. And what exactly is that authority? We appeal explicitly to the weight of our own experience and the experience thousands of others have witnessed to, which tells us that to claim our own sexual orientation is in fact to accept the way in which God has created us."


Johnson is an honest man. He does not try to evade what the text says, and he acknowledges that homosexuality is condemned in Scripture. But to get away from the clear teaching of the Bible, he invents a new canon of human “experience.” In other words, Johnson says to hell with what the Bible says!

And why is the homosexual lifestyle being openly embraced and celebrated in so many evangelical churches today? Well, why not? In the last fifty years, evangelicals have compromised with premarital promiscuity in every form, Internet pornography, abortion, and divorce. Instead of rebuking these sins in ourselves and our children, we have permitted them and excused them. We have fooled ourselves into believing that just because someone calls himself Christian then he must be a Christian. We have bought into the idea that since we believe then our children must believe. We have bought into the lie of conversion by easy-believeism that does not change lives instead of holding on to the Biblical teaching of conversion which leads to repentance and transformed lives. So, if every other sexual sin is permitted, then why not homosexuality? If one is immersed in the culture of tolerance and moral neutrality, one does not have the moral high ground to call anything sin.

What we see is moral inversion. Moral inversion is taking what God forbids and commands us to forsake and making it a normative lifestyle which is celebrated as freedom and creativity in one’s worship of God. It is a replaying of the story of the typographical error of “The Adulterous Bible” of 1631 in which the Seventh Commandment is misprinted to read “Thou shalt commit adultery.” Indeed, moral inversion is sin with a high hand where people who call themselves by the name of the God of the Bible and His Christ deem what God calls “sin” and “abomination” an allowable lifestyle and a liberating path to freedom. It is a lie. It declares acceptable what God says is not acceptable. It is, therefore, soul-damning to both those who teach it and trust it.

At this point, if one is determined to live a lifestyle of heterosexual or homosexual promiscuity, do it. However, please, have the courage and integrity not to call it Christianity. Call it neo-paganism. That is what it is!

What does Christian faith look like? Is it a theological or philosophical discussion about religious ideas? No! That is a course in Bible or philosophy or religion.

Is it a religious experience that makes one feel nice and warm but does not alter and transform one’s lifestyle and cannot be measured? No! That is narcissistic self-absorption and delusional nonsense.

Christian faith begins with the realization that God is our Maker and we are not our own maker. Christian faith recognizes that the Bible is the record of God’s Word of judgment and life to mankind. Christian faith acknowledges that we are sinners by nature and deeds and are in need of salvation. Christian faith receives the commandments, commands, precepts, statutes, rules, and directions of God as they are found in the Bible as authoritative and normative. Christian faith calls sin what God calls sin and righteousness what God calls righteousness. Christian faith repents of sin and cleaves to the Lord Jesus Christ as the only saving sacrifice for sin. Christian faith, therefore, is a life-transforming faith-experience in the Christ of the Bible which impels a lifestyle of repentance and righteousness as prescribed by the judgments of God as they are found in the words of the Bible.

1 Corinthians 6.11 reads, “And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.” These are very comforting words to me. These words mean change is possible – and no one is excluded. These words mean I can change as God’s Spirit leads me to faith and an obedient lifestyle of righteousness. The lifestyles of sin are not sovereign. The sins that condemned me are now washed, and I am justified and sanctified “in the name of the Lord Jesus.” This promise is extended to all who are enslaved by all lifestyles of sexual promiscuity – and all other lifestyles of sinful behavior.

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