One United Methodist Youth Pastor, Tyler Smither, stated his position that What You Believe About Homosexuality Doesn’t Matter. He wrote the article in light of the recent Phil Robertson GQ interview and Frank Schaefer’s defrocking over performing his son’s same-sex marriage.
Smither is wrong that it does not matter what someone believes about homosexuality. The importance of what is believed on the subject is easily seen, for example, by how it divides each side, both for and against. The big issue Smither raises is the one he uses as the reason why one’s position on homosexuality does not matter. He asserts that calling homosexuality a sin is “theologically correct” while staying silent is being “morally responsible.”
When faced with the choice between being theologically correct…as if this is even possible…and being morally responsible, I’ll go with morally responsible every time.
For Smither, it is morally responsible to stay silent on homosexuality while it is theologically correct to speak of homosexuality as sin. This position raises a problem for Christians because there is no separating theological correctness from moral responsibility. Theology is basically the study of God and how He relates to the world.
Everything is theological. Everything.
Being morally responsible is theologically correct. Christian morality is based what God has revealed about Himself in Scripture. To pit theology against moral responsibility is to void any foundation for moral reasoning. Christians are to take every thought captive bringing in obedience to Christ and do all things for His glory. These commands include how Christians think about and approach homosexuality. Being honest about homosexuality being sin is about honoring God and tell the truth to those who are made in His image.
Of course, honesty is painful – sin is painful.
It is a shame that teens who identify as gay are about 3 times more likely to attempt suicide. And that 1 in 3 gay teens will attempt suicide. More horrible is when these teens succeed in their attempts. Some, like Smither, say these suicides and those attempted are reason enough not to talked about whether or not homosexuality is a sin. These kids have got to be protected from themselves so silence is the best path when it comes to speaking about their sexuality. But silence on this issue is promotes a bigger problem because kids are killing themselves.
Christians must speak-up because kids are dying; dying without Christ!
The morally responsible approach to homosexuality is not silence, but theological correctness expressed through the love of Christ. It matters what Christians think about homosexuality because it matters what God says about it. The responsible approach is to be honest that homosexuality is a sin; yet, Christians must do so in a way that those listening understand it is not the only sin. The morally responsible Christian approach is to stop pretending that all other sins of the world – sexual immorality, idolatry, adultery, drunkenness, greed, theft, slander, etc. - are all okay except homosexual activity.
The homosexual and the heterosexual all come to Jesus as the sinners they are with all their sin attached. The love of Christ bids us Christians to speak up. By calling sin, sin the ground is laid to make sense of why anyone needs the gospel. Christians can explain what they believe about homosexuality by sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ which offers freedom and forgiveness of sin. Christians can share the sins they were saved out of and the ones with which they still struggle.
Lives are at stake, we Christians must speak up!
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