This is written from a conservative Christian perspective.
Obedience and Keeping the Commandments
Central to Christianity is the belief that salvation is given freely to those who repent and believe in Christ. This does not mean that we can repent and believe, then continue on in sinful ways (Matt. 7.21-23). If we have truly accepted Christ as Lord, we will want to obey his commands.
Jesus requires obedience from those who profess to know and love Him. This is mentioned many times in the Bible, most clearly in John 14:15, "If you love Me, you will keep my commandments."
Keeping the commandments of our Lord brings us joy. A child who obeys her parents has a healthy relationship with them, and is more likely to grow up happier and healthier. To have a healthy spiritual life, we must obey our Heavenly Father. Jesus said in John 15:10. "If you keep my commandments, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father's commands and remain in His love."
Keeping the commandments is difficult because humans have fallen into sin. The path that leads to salvation is straight and narrow, and there are few that find it. The path that leads to death is broad, and there are many who enter through it (Matt. 7.13,14). Christians should strive to walk the narrow path.
If we love Jesus, we will keep his commands. If we keep his commands, we remain in his love. If we remain in his love, we know we are walking the narrow path that leads to life.
What is Permissible and what is Forbidden
On June 19th, the Presbyterian Church (USA) voted 429-175 to change the denomination's definition of marriage as being between "two people." This essentially opens a path for gay marriage in the denomination's 10,000 churches (source: Huffington Post).
Same sex marriage is a hot topic these days. For state and federal governments to be more open toward gay marriage makes sense. After all, a government should exist to protect and serve its citizens, and implement laws that reflect the will of the people.
A church body is in a different position than a government. The church should obey both the law of God and the law of the government but obedience to God should always come first. On the issue of gay marriage, the will of the Lord is clear: homosexual activity is not permissible (Lev. 18.22), and God condemned Sodom and Gomorrah for their homosexuality (Gen. 18.20-21). These passages are from the Old Testament, and are reinforced in the New Testament.
The New Testament changed the dynamic between God and man. Jesus was the fulfillment of all the laws and prophets; he satisfied the requirements of the Old Testament and made salvation available to all people, not just the Israelites (Mat. 5.17). Because of His sacrifice, we are no longer required to do things like sacrifice animals or perform circumcision. However, we are still commanded to be sexually pure. The Apostle Paul describes sexual immorality as a wicked perversion of God's gift:
Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator who is forever praised. Amen. Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error. -Romans 1:24-27
Exchanging the Truth for a Lie
Marriage was instituted and designed by God who created male and female and blessed us saying, "Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth" (Gen. 1.27). Marriage is meant to be between one man and one woman. A man will leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh (Gen. 2.24).
The Presbyterian Church's decision to redefine marriage as between "two people" instead of one man and one woman is a clear example of exchanging the truth about God for a lie. It's an example of a church body choosing to walk the broad path instead of the narrow.
If the Presbyterian church professes to believe in and love God, how can they pick and choose which commandments they will follow? How can they allow within their ranks something that the Lord says is sin? Why do they acquiesce to the will of people and not the will of God? Loving the Lord means obeying all his commandments.
Christians Should Not Hate Gays
Christians should not support same-sex marriage, nor should they hate or discriminate against people who are gay. Instead, they should treat people who are gay with love, while carefully balancing tactful admonition with tempered respect. Those who speak against homosexuality from a posture of hatred and intolerance bring shame to themselves, especially if they claim to be Christian (like the Westboro Baptist church). These people ruin the reputation of Christianity and the Church.
Christians must be the first to remember that we are all sinners. Paul writes in Romans 3:22-24, "There is no difference between Jew and Gentile, for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus." There is no difference between gay and straight. We all have gone astray in our own way; "there is no one righteous, not even one; there is no one who understands; there is no one who seeks God. All have turned away, they have together become worthless; there is no one who does good, not even one" (Rom 3.10-12).
Christians who would think about condemning gays, or anyone else for that matter, would do well to remember Romans 3.
The Presbyterian Church's decision is disappointing. Times are changing and opinions are changing, but God does not change, nor does his law. Christians who truly love Christ must strive with all diligence to keep his commandments and walk the narrow path. We must not exchange His truth for a lie.
The reason I was drawn to ULC is because it does not get drawn into cherry-picking which biblical drivel is "truth" and which is "metaphor" or simply ok to discard. Jesus said he was here to enforce every jot and title of the old testament; the church somehow translated that into applying only the convenient laws.
Those of you who would deny gay people a complete and fulfilling relationship with their chosen partners don't have much to say about people who work on the sabbath - though that rule was so much more important that it is in the 10 Commandments, while same-sex relationships are not.
In saying that because same set was not a commandment would be denying the coveting of a wife of a neighbor which is a commandment. God has these detailed laws spelled out of his Moral commandments and masterbation, same set permiscuity is a moral law against Gods wishes. How can you disputemthat as Godsmwishes and truth Raph?
what were Jesus commandment's, no man could ever fulfill the ten command that is why Jesus died , God felt sad for his creation , Knowing they could not obey the ten commandment's not one living human being ,so God Impregnated mary and became the sacrifice for the whole world,,, it is a free gift , lets say someone goes down to the bank and asks the bank how much to pay off your mortgage on your house , and he pays it off, and leaves the bank .. you go to your bank the next week to make your mortgage payment,, the banker says your mortgage has been paid off in full you owe nothing here is your deed , r u going to argue with the banker and make him take your money for no reason ,,, its like recruc i fing Christ all over again....... sincerely you r save by Grace through Faith in Christ Jesus,, Being a Christian Dose not mean you will be 100 percent right in all you do ,, but it means your 100 percent washed in the blood of Jesus, being a Christian doesn't mean your going to be sinless, but it dose mean you will Sin Less >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Pastor Max G
Pastor Max that was well said
You are correct, Raph. I just now saw this.
Raph, Jesus became our Sabbath" our resting" place, our Passover, when He died for us on the cross. So any day with Him is Sabbath. However, going after "strange" flesh and committing abomination before Him would hardly be considered Sabbath.
Hebrews 4:9 says there remains a keeping of the Sabbath for the people of God.
How can Sabbath keeping be more important to supposed "followers of Jesus" than it was to Jesus himself, who regularly violated the Sabbath when someone needed help or healing (and so, just every Sabbath and every other day because there were always people needing help or healing!)? The same way that they could be against homosexuality, even though Jesus never said anything against homosexuality, and the same way that Cardinals and Popes and Bishops and even priests can dress in fine robes and live in a Papal palace or fine mansion or rectory, even though their "Lord and Master" had nowhere to lay his head and was an itinerant preacher, and the same way that they could be in favor of capital punishment, even though their own "Lord and Master" was executed and also said "Love your enemy" and "Forgive seventy times seven" (which would certainly preclude executing someone that you have "forgiven seventy times seven"), and that they could, just generally, be different kinds of people than their "Master". Because they actually believe that they are "holier" than he was, since "by their fruits, you will know them". "Is the servant greater than his master?". Evidently so, according to their example.
I agree totally.
I would have to say being a Christian dose not mean you will be 100 % right in all you do but it dose mean I'm 100% washed in the blood of Jesus , being a Christian dose not mean you will be sinless but it dose mean you will sin Less Paul wrote about the struggle between flesh and spirit and finding himself struggling with the will to do good but foud himself doing the opposite, but I promise you if you do 2 Timothy 2:15 you will sin a lot less as life goes on it takes time for good wine to ferment ?... Pastor Max ,,, think about it
Learn the proper spelling of DOES not dose.
I'm a little lost. Which commandment delivered by Moses states "THOU SHALT NOT LOVE A MAN IF THOU ART A MAN AND THOU SHALT NOT LOVE A WOMAN IF THOU ART A WOMAN. I AM THE LORD THY GOD AND MY LOVE FOR MY CHILDREN IS A PURE LOVE, YET MY CHILDRENS LOVE FOR EACH OTHER IS ONLY PERMITTED UNDER CERTAIN CIRCUMSTANCES, THOSE BEING WHEN THEY ARE CHILDREN OF THE OPPOSITE SEX. LOT WAS MADE TO BE DRUNK BY HIS OWN DAUGHTERS WHO THEN LAY WITH HIM, COMMITTING INCEST FOR THE PURPOSE OF BECOMING PREGNANT, ACTIONS WHICH I IMPLICITLY APPROVED WHEN I FAILED TO CONDEMN LOT'S INCESTUOUS DAUGHTERS FOR BRINGING INTO THE WORLD THE ABOMINATIONS THAT ARE BIRTHED IN SIN WHEN THEY ARE PRODUCTS OF INCEST.Which commandment was that again?
Kristi, you're right. The problem with Bible based LGBTQ ministries is that the Bible clearly condemns this sort of sexual activity. From what I read in the Bible, there is no way around it. As much as I love and care about people who are LGBTQ and the struggles they undergo, the plain truth is that their lifestyle is an affront to God according to the Bible. Now bear in mind that this same Bible condemns a whole host of other things like stealing, blasphemy, lying, infidelity, anger, and so on.So how should we regard those in the LGBTQ community? A good example is how Jesus handled the woman taken in adultery(John 8:1-11). I feel that there is no easy answer for members of the LGBTQ community as they try to reconcile their culture with a holy book that speaks out against it.
Thanks for another summon to add to my collection that I will pass on! God (whomever you perceive that to be) bless. Bro. Billy