"Rainbow Revisions"    [ 07 ]   
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Aug 2015

~  What The Bible Really Says About Homosexuality  ~

  #LoveWins ?
 John Lennon
What is Love?
 
  According to John Lennon's circular-reasoning song Love is real ~ real is love
    Love is feeling ~ feeling love
    Love is wanting to be loved...

And so on . . . Sounds nice, yes?   :-)   Just a few years before [but with a different band] he sang: "All You Need Is Love". They gathered a bunch of their friends together for a live TV broadcast ("Our World") and had trumpets and everything!  ♥ ·•· Flower Power ·•· ♥  Now, with the recent Obergefell v. Hodges ruling, such a universal message of Love is at last finally realized here in the United States. Now everyone is legally free to physically love anyone else of consensual age and inclination, whomever they like, however they like. THAT is Love . . . right?  And now anyone who entertains a different opinion is considered a 'hater', not a Lover . . .

QUESTION:
Does "loving someone" mean they should be free to explore any/every avenue of self-expression, experimentation, and 'love adventure' they wish, pursuing any/every impulse, urge, or inclination? Many today might answer to the affirmative — "Yes, of course. That is progressive freedom. That is Love!"

According to this way of thinking, I would be a progressive, loving parent if I allowed my 5-year-old child to dash out into a busy street after her bouncing ball. ~ This is, of course, ludicrous. Yet this same child will most assuredly protest any rules blocking her from the perceived fun she wants to pursue. She cannot comprehend why anyone would want to enforce such narrow-minded restrictions! After all, she believes in her heart that she will be safe no matter what she does or where she goes, and this is good enough for her. She will decry how unfair my rules are, chafing at the social structures set in place to ensure the very safety she enjoys . . .

 George Costanza

My liberal friends and associates (yes, I have friends who self-identify as 'gay') reading this post may reply: I know where you're going with this, but the fact is, I am smarter than a 5-year-old child. ~ No doubt. ~ But my kid-in-the-street example calls into question not just the nature of what is believed, but why it is believed. Consider this: a lie believed to be true will be regarded as wholly reliable by its adherent(s), and therefore acted upon as truth despite real-world and possibly dangerous consequences. The deepest, purest, most sincere faith held by one who believes he can fly will not spare him a gruesome death should he leap from a 20-storey perch. No matter how much I really really wish for it, hope for it, or sincerely believe it down in the very über-core of my being: 2 + 2 ≠ 3 .. or 5 ..or 17  ~  The sum of 2 + 2 will never, can never, equal anything but the specific, unique, true value of 4. Saying otherwise is like fawning over the "Emperor's New Clothes" especially when adopted by the commonwealth (pluralistic ignorance). I would not want to fly in your rocket ship built upon such flexible math... In the old 90's sitcom 'Seinfeld', George Costanza once told Jerry, "It's not a lie if you believe it." His reasoning garnered laughs on the show, and rightly so. No amount of sincerity will magically make something, or someone, correct, if their convictions are based on falsehoods.

As a nation, our social barometer commonly used to gauge what is Reasonable has slowly eroded over the decades. America was initially founded on Judeo/Christian beliefs, yet the very architects of our nation would be directly persecuted for their faith in today's modern culture. The issue of slavery may be brought up to tarnish the Christian ethos held by our forefathers; however, the cultural tide of our nation eradicated that evil practice. Good men of every race sought to purge it completely from our society. They did not celebrate it, nor did they seek to protect it as a 'right'. Rather, they exposed it for the abomination that it was...

Real Love endorses appropriate boundaries ~ not to limit freedoms, but to protect them, to ensure the sanctity of safe living for everyone in society. Yet as our national moral compass has dissolved, generation after generation has grown up increasingly desensitized to real atrocities that, a mere 50 years earlier, would result in swift and godly judgment in our courts. For instance, just since the Roe v. Wade ruling of 1973, nearly 60 million babies have been killed ~ —  60,000,000 individual people in America alone  — ~ all to protect the 'right' of promiscuity . .. not to mention how the products of such irresponsible living are disposed of (currently being exposed through leaked videos detailing the barbarity of Planned Parenthood) .. . It boggles the mind how anyone can endorse, celebrate, and demand as a 'right' the pursuit of such things .. . But in today's America, that is precisely what is protected by law while those opposed to it are shunned and treated as if they have no sense. - - - unbelievable.  (By the way, God offers complete forgiveness to those who come to Him in full repentance .. more about that later!)

My heart breaks over these issues and for all who are lost among them . ..

Yet genuine care is reviled by those who defend the worst of practices.

 Penn Jillette

You may know of the comedic magic duo Penn & Teller, both of whom are ardent atheists. Though they go to great lengths to (inaccurately) 'prove' the Bible wrong, I freely admit a measure of respect for Penn Jillette, who offered this [presumed] honest response (5:00 video) to genuine Christian love demonstrated in his own life. The Bible plainly states true followers of Christ will be known [should be known] by their love for others; not in sentiment only, but authenticated by their actions in this world, just as reflected in this man's actions described by Penn. Though Penn & Teller hold fast to the inaccuracies packaged in their abundant sidebar videos (full of false claims, assumptions, and fallacious presentations), and the aim of this particular video seems to be shaming Christians as hateful hypocrites (which seems to be P&T's default position against all believers), Penn bears witness to love in action properly executed by at least one faithful follower of Christ. At least he "gets" this much and is honest enough to share about it, though he appears to struggle with his own spiritual convictions in the telling of it.

The heart of God is to share His free message of eternal Restoration of relationship and the gift of Eternal Life with all humanity (the 'Good News' of the gospel) through His emissaries here on earth, the true followers of Jesus Christ. Approaching God the Father through His only begotten Son requires not perfection on our part, but genuine repentance ~ which means forsaking one's sinful habits and lifestyles and embracing His ways for humans to live and interact with Him and one another. (Click here to learn more!) As our grand Designer, He wrote the guidebook [literally] on how best to live and manage one's earthly life as expressed in the Bible. It is this very call to purity that draws such a hard line against perversion, especially when His own Word is misrepresented by those seeking to justify their sin and, by their example, lead others astray. (See Mark 9:42 to learn what Jesus had to say about that)

Now certain voices in the public arena claim to speak with authority about how the Bible regards homosexuality. Either knowingly or unknowingly, they are grossly misrepresenting the Word of God. (Not a good idea, guys ~ see Jeremiah 23:1, Matthew 18:6-7 ~ God is not some 'concept' but as the source of Life itself, is the authoritative and most Real Being that we all will face in due time) Everyone has their own opinions about contemporary issues, certainly, but it is a sad fact that most folks are simply not familiar enough with the Bible today to recognize falsehoods when they scour across the internet, or on the news, TV, radio, or in articles and books. A few weeks ago, while wading through a sea of newly-rainbowed Facebook profiles appearing after the historic June 26, 2015 decision, my eldest daughter shared an article with us that finally stirred me to action, at least in our own home. We had not, in all honesty, directly addressed these issues as a family, so we found that the declarations made in this hot mess challenged even my own children regarding what the Bible teaches in these matters. Funny how so much confusion follows the dissemination of partial truths...

I strive to offer everyone the benefit of the doubt as a matter of course, but it quickly became clear that self-appointed 'curator' Erica Williams Simon and her very public source, Matthew Vines, mean to intentionally mislead readers by omitting contrary scriptures and/or misinterpreting original meanings out of their original contexts. Properly investigating the historical times, languages, idioms, cultures, author(s), recipient(s), purpose for communication, politics of the era and so on, is called Biblical exegesis. The truest meaning of any scripture is drawn from a healthy combination of all of these methods (and more). To the contrary, imposing one's desired meaning upon ancient texts is called 'eisegesis'. It is a dangerous method upon which to formulate one's patchwork spiritual basis and is overwhelmingly evident in their offerings. The Bible directly addresses such practices:

For the time will come when people will not put up with sound doctrine.
Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great
number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. They
will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths.
—  2 Timothy 4:3-4  

Erica opens her message proudly declaring herself "the daughter of two ministers and still spend every Sunday in church, so I grew up studying the Bible pretty closely." Sounds impressive and credible to those unfamiliar with Scripture, but then it just spirals down from there. As I continued reading her badly-informed article, an overriding question loomed: "What Bible could you possibly have read in this church upbringing you claim?" It could not have been any standard NIV, King James, or even a Living Bible, because no canonical translation of God's Word could possibly result in the confusion displayed in her/their 'findings'. It is sad to say, but this may very well be a case where she (or her well-meaning parents?) simply did not study or heed the Bible through proper exegesis, which is increasingly common in our post-Christian culture. But this is a very dangerous practice, one I advise my own children to challenge for themselves. I encourage them — and everyone — to take the time to find out why you believe what you claim to believe, asking yourself: Is it cogent? Is it based on substantiated facts, archaeological evidence, and reasonable, clear understanding? It is astonishing how many people, particularly religious people, do not do this. For instance, approach any Unitarian 'church' in your own town and ask some basic theological questions of any pastor on staff. They will likely become visibly nervous and start shelling out meaningless platitudes that have no bearing whatsoever on the genuine authoritative truth of the Bible. I am not setting out to bust on Unitarians as such, or even Erica or Matthew, both of whom seem like nice enough individuals out in the world, but . .. wow —  'Nice' does not equal Right.  No amount of smiling conviction (or deception, self-inflicted or otherwise) can alter the Truth. When someone claims to share from the Word of God and knowingly or unknowingly lies or willfully misleads through their teachings . .. ~ oh ~ man ~ . .. . ! .... . Publicly maligning the Word of God is * NOT * O.K.! As for the supposed claims "from the Bible" made in the videos and book by Mr. Vines, plenty of theologians and Biblical scholars have already been correcting his faulty logic for months now, and in growing numbers. For my part in this little corner of the world wide web, I will address what the Bible actually DOES say about homosexuality, regardless of my or anyone else's opinions to the contrary. I am not challenging what someone wants to believe as "true for them" (as if such thinking defines Reality ~ a bizarre logic-repulsing 'enlightened' concept), but what the BIBLE states about these matters, as opposed to malefactors trying to twist God's Word into implying or condoning something that it very clearly does not. (By the way, twisting the truth like that is Satan's primary mode of deception)

For certain individuals whose condemnation was written about
long ago have secretly slipped in among you. They are ungodly
people, who pervert the grace of our God into a license for
immorality and deny Jesus Christ our only Sovereign and Lord.

—  Jude 4  

Contrary to modern thinking: * PERSONAL PERCEPTION DOES NOT DEFINE REALITY *  ~  Consider our cliff-jumper mentioned earlier. He can 'perceive' whatever he likes, but it won't stall him from a rapid and very real death. Someone can believe all they want, hoping that unrestrained drug use will cause no ill effects, but keep pumping that bogus theology into your veins and you will die of an overdose in no time. The more I explore the lies perpetuated out there, the more I become convinced of what the Bible declares concerning man's inclination toward evil. You have probably heard of John 3:16... but continuing on in the Word from that point, and you will find a whole lot more to that passage addressing exactly what I'm talking about (highlighted in blue):

 
For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever
believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his
Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.
Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe
stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of
God’s one and only Son. This is the verdict: Light has come into the world,
but people loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil.
Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for
fear that their deeds will be exposed.
But whoever lives by the truth comes
into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what they have done has
been done in the sight of God.               —  John 3:16-21
 

This very attitude is running rampant across our laws these days. As if to personify this, the city of Detroit just erected a large statue in honor of Satan ... seriously. It's 9 feet (3 meters) tall. In an article addressing this apostasy, Jim Denison, PhD, states: "Reality is ultimately not what you choose, but what your Creator has chosen." I could not agree more. It is so sad to me when I consider how Jesus came to earth to fulfill the requirements of God's holy standards for perfection, die in our place for our sins, and was brought back to life as a 'first fruits' promise of what awaits everyone who abides in Him (a promise made by the Only One who cannot lie) . . . yet the world rejects Him out-of-hand. As a people, we now celebrate what is wrong and call this 'right', disregarding what God warns about those who do such things (Isaiah 5:20-24).

As of this writing, it has been just over a month since our U.S. Supreme Court ruled same-sex (so-called) 'marriage' is now a constitutional right. As of this summer, anyone who will not willingly officiate and/or support such a union stands in violation of the U.S. Constitution. As of this summer, it is now the national policy of America that such 'tolerance' is compulsory by law, in the sense that ALL must be tolerant of this ruling, yet at the same intolerance is expected and condoned toward those who disagree with this ruling. In fact, our justice system will now defend intolerant 'tolerance'! On the eve of this ruling, Pastor Franklin Graham appropriately summed up the Christian perspective on this national plunge into lasciviousness in this short article, "God Defines Marriage, Not the Supreme Court" (along with a timely 6½ minute video), stating in part:

The Supreme Court of the United States has ruled today that same-sex marriage is legal in all 50 states. With all due respect to the court, it did not define marriage, and therefore is not entitled to re-define it. Long before our government came into existence, marriage was created by the One who created man and woman — Almighty God — and His decisions are not subject to review or revision by any manmade court. God is clear about the definition of marriage in His Holy Word: “Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh” (Genesis 2:24).

Nearly five hundred years ago, another man lived and died by Biblical convictions. Sir Thomas More stood trial in 1535 for publicly opposing the marriage of King Henry VIII to Anne Boleyn, as the King's 20+ year marriage to Catherine had no valid grounds for divorce. During his trial, More was quoted as saying, "Some men say the earth is flat. Some men say the earth is round. But if it is flat, could Parliament make it round? And if it is round, could the King's command flatten it?" No earthly authority can overrule that which God has instituted in natural law. No amount of court rulings can change such Truth; they can only break themselves against that which God, the Ultimate Authority, has established.

Months before the Supreme Court made their decision, thousands of theologians and religious leaders all across the United States, representing virtually very Christian denomination, signed a petition entitled the "Pledge in Solidarity to Defend Marriage". Many of the points outlined in this post are clearly defined in this short but poignant document, which ends with this vow:

We stand united together in defense of marriage. Make no mistake about our resolve.
While there are many things we can endure, redefining marriage is so fundamental to
the natural order and the common good that this is the line we must draw and one we
cannot and will not cross.

To be perfectly clear: GOD LOVES HOMOSEXUALS (and so should Christians), but He can neither condone nor overlook wanton sin - not theirs, not anyone's. His love for them is the same love He harbors for all unsaved souls with whom He longs to share eternal life (see 2 Peter 3:9). LGBTQIA's are not 'the enemies of God' or of Christianity ~ rather, they are * captives * of our real enemy! In precisely the same way that all who come to the Lord are first naturally born into sin, and so naturally follow sinful desires by default, ALL Christians have been lifted from that doomed state into God's forgiveness and grace. So, before anybody claiming to be a Christian might raise a pitchfork and Bible to go after those LGBTer's, you had better be very careful of your motive. Are you attacking people, or the sin that entraps them? Those teaching wrongfully must be contended with as they are a danger to so many around them, but consider the fact that God defines a list of sins alongside homosexuality that are routinely committed by most believers! (More on that when we get into Scripture) However, protecting sin under federal law does not make it in any way 'right', and will assuredly result in peaceful civil disobedience as ministers cannot, in good conscience, officiate so-called gay 'weddings'. Yet now, by law, Christians can no longer simply love their neighbors quietly as a friendly witness, holding true to their own convictions. —( The Tolerant are intolerant of this! )— The tide of our culture may have changed dramatically, but God's Word and standards do not. Truth is Truth regardless of any human vote. Majority rule does not determine what is True; it merely reflects widespread dogma, which remains wrong if founded on improper principles. To explore what the Bible truly teaches about homosexuality, we will begin with what Jesus Himself said about marriage . . .

 
How Jesus Defined Marriage

Jesus was challenged one day by contentious personalities in his own community:

“Have you not read,” he replied, “that at the beginning the Creator
 ‘made them male and female,’ and said, ‘For this reason a man will
 leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two
 will become one flesh’? So they are no longer two, but one flesh.
 Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.”
—  (Jesus) Matthew 19:4-6   

Jesus referenced the same passage of Old Testament scripture (Genesis 2:24) reflected in Pastor Graham's response to the Supreme Court ruling. Jesus confirmed God's institution of marriage as one man joining with one woman. Period. Countless Biblical commentaries are available offering further insights into this subject. By way of example, here is one pertaining to this Genesis verse:

God gave marriage as a gift to Adam and Eve. They were created perfect for each other. Marriage was not just for convenience, nor was it brought about by any culture. It was instituted by God and has three basic aspects: (1) the man leaves his parents and, in a public act, promises himself to his wife; (2) the man and woman are joined together by taking responsibility for each other's welfare and by loving the mate above all others; (3) the two become one flesh in the intimacy and commitment of sexual union that is reserved for marriage. Strong marriages include all three of these aspects.    ( footnote from the 'Life Application Bible' [NIV] )

There is no room for ambiguity, no concession for pursuing more partners, or same-sex partners, or any other variation from the normative standard God ordained. In fact, He overtly condemns all such aberrations — not to 'limit' us, but to provide the best possible way to express and receive love in the most healthy and vibrant ways. Yet I have heard LGBTer's try to support their viewpoint by quoting the Bible declaring that 'God is Love', implying that this somehow grants them free license to 'love' anyone in any way. The passage most often quoted to support their stance is this (note the highlights):

  Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. This is how God
showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we
might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us
and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.
Dear friends, since God so
loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we
love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.
  This is how we know that we live in him and he in us: He has given us of his Spirit.
And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of
the world. If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in them
and they in God. And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love.
Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them.        —  1 John 4:8-16   

Love-in-action is the issue. Anyone can perform any act and declare "this is love" or that something or other is done "in love", but if God truly is the author of Love, and He defines love and is Love, then to disregard what He says about it and how love is made manifest in this world, not to mention the social guidelines of His decrees, is to dismiss one's basis for this argument entirely. You can't have it both ways. You cannot claim to follow God while rejecting His very Words. To do so negates one's claims to be a follower of God in any sense. Cherry-picking a few bits from the Bible while dismissing the whole, or worse, simply making things up that were never intended in Scripture, is not Christianity at all. Perhaps the most famous Scripture defining love is found in 1 Corinthians, chapter 13:

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast,
it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking,
it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does
not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects,
always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.
—  1 Corinthians 13:4-8a   

Later in that same chapter, the apostle Paul describes growing up and embracing this kind of thinking: “When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me.” (1 Corinthians 13:11) Jesus Himself described love as laying one's life down for the sake of others (John 15:13). Love is not self-seeking, demanding your way over that of another. I teach my daughters that any young man who claims to love you will seek to protect and cherish you as a young woman, honoring your purity. He will not subvert your trust with intentions to take advantage of you. That is not love; that is lust, a lack of self-control, and deception. True Love seeks the best for others. It does not push its way or force itself upon others. True Love respects healthy boundaries.

The original languages of the Bible (ancient Hebrew, Greek, Aramaic) reveal even more. Words translated into our English parlance as "love" were very often much more descriptive in their original language, focusing on different kinds of love:

 LOVE:
storge (STOR-gay) Affectionate love; compulsory, as a parent for a child (think: family & devotion)
phileo (fill-LAY-oh) A friendship love as between peers, in community, marked by loyalty (friendship, fondness)
eros (AIR-os) A romantic and intimate love shared exclusively between lovers (erotic)
agape (ah-GAHP-eh) The deepest form of love seeking the very best for another (unconditional and total)
( This webpage goes into these in a little more depth )

Is Love merely a touchy-feely kind of thing as described by John Lennon? Oh, it certainly can be, but that is just a slender fragment of the whole. Is Love whatever we choose to make up about it, as George Costanza advises? (Good luck with that) If one chooses to respect the authority of God's Word, especially concerning the definition of marriage, the Creator is quite clear on the matter: one man and one woman in a bonded marriage union, begetting the very heart of practical societal structure: the family unit consisting of a father and a mother and their children. This is the very core, the foundation, of societal love.

 
Homosexuality in the Bible

Turning more directly to our concern, the Bible has quite a lot to say about homosexuality. Some argue that it is only prohibited in the Old Testament and is not reflected negatively in the New Testament. This is patently false, as will be demonstrated below, beginning with one of the most infamous accounts in the entire Bible. The word 'sodomy' (male homosexual sex) is derived from a specific town and event found near the middle of the first book of the Bible. God sent two angels disguised as men to journey into the twin cities of Sodom and Gomorrah which were, at the time, vibrant trading centers in that region. They were also known far and wide as hubs of unbridled homosexual debauchery (see the last half of Genesis 18).

The Destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah:

The two angels arrived at Sodom in the evening, and Lot was sitting in the gateway of the city. When he saw them, he got up to meet them and bowed down with his face to the ground. “My lords,” he said, “please turn aside to your servant’s house. You can wash your feet and spend the night and then go on your way early in the morning.”

“No,” they answered, “we will spend the night in the square.”

But he insisted so strongly that they did go with him and entered his house. He prepared a meal for them, baking bread without yeast, and they ate. Before they had gone to bed, all the men from every part of the city of Sodom — both young and old — surrounded the house. They called to Lot, “Where are the men who came to you tonight? Bring them out to us so that we can have sex with them.

Lot went outside to meet them and shut the door behind him and said, “No, my friends. Don’t do this wicked thing. Look, I have two daughters who have never slept with a man. Let me bring them out to you, and you can do what you like with them. But don’t do anything to these men, for they have come under the protection of my roof.”

“Get out of our way,” they replied. “This fellow came here as a foreigner, and now he wants to play the judge! We’ll treat you worse than them.” They kept bringing pressure on Lot and moved forward to break down the door.

But the men inside reached out and pulled Lot back into the house and shut the door. Then they struck the men who were at the door of the house, young and old, with blindness so that they could not find the door.

The two men said to Lot, “Do you have anyone else here — sons-in-law, sons or daughters, or anyone else in the city who belongs to you? Get them out of here, because we are going to destroy this place. The outcry to the Lord against its people is so great that he has sent us to destroy it.

So Lot went out and spoke to his sons-in-law, who were pledged to marry his daughters. He said, “Hurry and get out of this place, because the Lord is about to destroy the city!” But his sons-in-law thought he was joking.

With the coming of dawn, the angels urged Lot, saying, “Hurry! Take your wife and your two daughters who are here, or you will be swept away when the city is punished.”

When he hesitated, the men grasped his hand and the hands of his wife and of his two daughters and led them safely out of the city, for the Lord was merciful to them. As soon as they had brought them out, one of them said, “Flee for your lives! Don’t look back, and don’t stop anywhere in the plain! Flee to the mountains or you will be swept away!”

Then the Lord rained down burning sulfur on Sodom and Gomorrah — from the Lord out of the heavens. Thus he overthrew those cities and the entire plain, destroying all those living in the cities — and also the vegetation in the land.

—  Genesis 19:1-17, 24-25  

Notwithstanding Lot's alarming treatment of his daughters (simply a reflection of their twisted family dynamic, which would soon turn even uglier), it is important to note that homosexuality was the pointed 'sin' for which the cities were destroyed. Sure, there was also an abusive mob mentality and unwarranted assault, but these stemmed from the drive to sin coursing through the men in these towns. As a result, the entire area was laid waste and has never been inhabited again. The remains of Sodom and Gomorrah have been identified just southeast of the Dead Sea (a short article and another lengthy detailed article ~ lots more available online). Ruins scorched from the top down and all sorts of revealing anomalies support the account recorded in Genesis as a factual historical event. (Just like Jericho, demonstrating how their city walls fell outward in a way not seen in any kind of siege battle, and hundreds of other Biblical archaeological real-world findings...)

Many LGBTer's still maintain that it was not for the sin of homosexuality Sodom and Gomorrah were destroyed, but rather due to their arrogance, self-absorbed living, and a complete disregard for the poor (sounds like modern-day America). In her article, Erica Williams Simon quotes from Ezekiel 16:49. However, she specifically ignores the very next verse which, in context, clarifies the focus and reason for God's warning (highlighted below):

“This was the sin of your sister Sodom: She and her daughters
  were arrogant, overfed and unconcerned; they did not help the
  poor and needy. They were haughty and did detestable things
  before me. Therefore I did away with them as you have seen.
—  Ezekiel 16:49-50   

The 'daughters' mentioned here poetically describe the surrounding towns in the valley which shared in the same fate as Sodom and Gomorrah. Was it merely a touch of arrogance, self-absorption, and social irresponsibility that God found so "detestable"? Or are these attitudes just symptomatic of the real cause of Sodom and Gomorrah's destruction, which is so clearly underscored in the Genesis account? Think about it: Lot's two visitors did not simply have to contend with a few bad attitudes found in a few citizens. No ~ it was much more visceral than that. Consider how this same brand of "gay pride" demonstrated back then is flaunted in every gay-rights parade and event today, typically accompanied with the same haughty arrogance and preening exhibitionism. (This very thing will be discussed later with a colorful twist!) The writer of the one-chapter book of Jude cuts straight to the point regarding all of this:

Sodom and Gomorrah and the surrounding towns gave themselves
up to sexual immorality and perversion. They serve as an example
of those who suffer the punishment of eternal fire.   —  Jude 7

Jude describes precisely why they were all destroyed: it wasn't due to cultural arrogance, but for "sexual immorality and perversion". There is no ambiguity about his meaning whatsoever. Their end was not a result of harboring bad attitudes, but for the overt sin they pursued and celebrated. (Further illumination may be found in this excellent Greek word study focusing on this particular verse) Elsewhere in the New Testament, the apostle Peter openly describes how God “condemned the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah by burning them to ashes, and made them an example of what is going to happen to the ungodly.” (2 Peter 2:5-6) More New Testament references are pending, but first let us go back to when God first singled out homosexuality as one of the most detestable practices humans can engage in:

Do not have sexual relations with a man as one does with a woman;
that is detestable.

If a man has sexual relations with a man as one does with a woman,
both of them have done what is detestable. They are to be put to
death; their blood will be on their own heads.
—  Leviticus 18:22 & 20:13  
 
abomination: 1. anything abominable; anything greatly disliked or abhorred
2. intense aversion or loathing; detestation
3. a vile, shameful, or detestable action, condition, habit, etc.
abominable: 1. repugnantly hateful; detestable; loathsome
2. very unpleasant; disagreeable
3. very bad, poor, or inferior.
One may argue if this translation/thought of "detestable" is really all that bad? Is it not simply more enlightened in our modern culture to consider such activities according to one's personal opinion? ... Well, aside from the death penalty [!!] mentioned as a consequence, maintaining that this may simply be acceptable in the eye of the beholder nowadays does not change God's viewpoint. English Bibles translate this word as either "detestable" or "an abomination". To be clear, consider these definitions ►

LGBTer's seeking to alter the Bible's meaning argue how many laws of God found in the Old Testament seem impractical and rendered moot in today's day and age. They cite dietary strictures banning the eating of pork and shellfish as examples of impractical standards, and are quick to group homosexuality with such outdated thinking. However, there is a fundamental difference between comparing such practices. The Jewish dietary laws were expanded in the New Testament to include virtually anything (see the dual-meaning Scripture found in the middle of Acts 10, and also Mark 7:18-19 and 1 Corinthians 10:25-26 & 31). By contrast, societal laws were not only maintained right into the New Testament, but emphasized and even more clearly defined. Jesus confirmed marriage as existing only between one man and one woman, pointing out that adultery and fornication in any form continue to count in God's opinion as sin. Homosexuality is specifically condemned throughout the New Testament. This detailed article "Why Eating Shrimp Is Not Like Homosexuality" gets right down in the weeds with ancient Hebrew and Greek words and syntax for those genuinely wishing to know the truth about this. (Here is another excellent link; part 3, links to parts 1, 2 & 4 available at the bottom) Pro-gay advocates hoping to leverage the Bible to their cause stray way out on a limb trying to dismiss the Old Testament law entirely, often quoting Hebrews 8:13 as 'proof' that Jesus Himself antiquated the Old Testament laws and customs:

By calling this covenant “new,” he has made the first one
obsolete, and what is obsolete and aging will soon disappear.
— Hebrews 8:13    

This really serves them no good purpose, as the New Testament itself repeatedly condemns homosexuality. And this passage, when read/studied in the clear context of Hebrews chapter 8, describes the completing work of Jesus which fulfilled the requirements of the Old Testament law as the ultimate atoning sacrifice for our sins, once and for all (further explained in Galatians 3:10-13). The pure holy sacrifice of Jesus Christ in our place renders the old methods of temple animal sacrifice completely unnecessary for those who repent and accept Him as their Savior. (Part of the "Good News" of the Gospel! check out Romans 4:24-25! ) And since God's covenants are irrevocable (by His own directive), once they are established, they stand forever. The O.T. law still stands as one method of drawing near to God for those who would live by it (mostly Jews). Paul explained it this way:

We know that the law is good if one uses it properly. We also know
that the law is made not for the righteous but for lawbreakers and
rebels, the ungodly and sinful, the unholy and irreligious, for those
who kill their fathers or mothers, for murderers, for the sexually
immoral, for those practicing homosexuality, for slave traders and
liars and perjurers — and for whatever else is contrary to the sound
doctrine that conforms to the gospel...
— 1 Timothy 1:8-11a   

Notice how the practice of homosexuality is grouped not only with sexual immorality, but also with murderers, slave traders, liars, and those who offer false testimony (in court, in life, in relationships, etcetera). The other sins in this short list qualify as just as bad as homosexuality in God's holy perspective. ~ Have you ever lied? ~ I have! ~ But the hinge upon which God's judgment turns is the word 'practicing'. Elsewhere in Scripture, Paul refers to believers who used to participate in such sinful behaviors, but have repented and now seek righteous living through Christ Jesus. Yes, I have lied in my past; but I do not 'practice' this sin, nor condone it in myself or others, since turning my life over to Christ. (This is no grand work of my own design, trust me ~ Philippians 1:6 & 2:13 [and many more] explain how God wills and works through anyone who genuinely seeks Him and allows Him to work honestly in their hearts, minds, and lives)

Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do
not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers
nor men who have sex with men nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards
nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.
— 1 Corinthians 6:9-10  

There it is again, directly condemned in the New Testament. (Click here to compare this passage with the glaring double-standard of Vines' boogering up Bible verses for his own purposes) Practitioners of these sins are called no less than "wicked" in God's own words. However, one must be careful before gathering up stones to attack LGBT advocates because other sins listed here garner the same degree of holy contempt in God's view, such as idolatry, a greedy lifestyle, and even getting drunk! Does this mean the Bible forbids an occasional drink now and then? No, of course not. Elsewhere in the Bible drinking wine is encouraged in moderation. But pursuing anything to excess quickly becomes idolatrous in our hearts, manifesting through us in the form of greedy motives, immoral choice, and sexual deviancies. Nowhere in the New Testament is this attitude more hotly contested than in the first chapter of the book of Romans:

The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of people who suppress the truth by their wickedness, since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities — his eternal power and divine nature — have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.

For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like a mortal human being and birds and animals and reptiles.

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.

Furthermore, just as they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, so God gave them over to a depraved mind, so that they do what ought not to be done. They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice. They are gossips, slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents; they have no understanding, no fidelity, no love, no mercy. Although they know God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them.

—  Romans 1:18-32   

Here the Bible directly declares that those who seek after the sinful lifestyle are willingly, even knowingly, suppressing the truth with a lie. Their hearts (ie, motivations, passions, drives, and ambitions) and very thinking patterns become darkened. They claim to be wise, yet have become genuine fools ~ all by their own choosing. Notice how both lesbianism and sodomy are distinctly indicated...

Paul clearly portrays the inevitable downward spiral into sin. First, people reject God; next, they make up their own ideas of what a god should be and do; then they fall into sin — sexual sin, greed, hatred, envy, murder, strife, deceit, malice, gossip. Finally, they grow to hate God and encourage others to do so. God does not cause this steady progression toward evil. Rather, when people reject Him, He allows them to live as they choose. God gives them over or permits them to experience the natural consequences of their sin. Once caught in the downward spiral, no one can pull himself or herself out. Sinners must trust Christ alone to put them on the path of escape.    ( footnote from the 'Life Application Bible' [NIV] )

This same depraved mindset is echoed elsewhere in God's Word (see 2 Timothy 3:1-9 and 2 Peter 2:3-19), where the contemptible fate awaiting those who would mislead others while claiming to speak from the knowledge and truth of the Bible is emphasized. (Consider those described in 1 Timothy 6:3-5) This is not some kind of game. There are no "do-overs". It is a fearful thing to trifle with the Living God... (Hebrews 10:26-31)

 
Don't Check Your Brains at the Door

 use your brain

Right about now, the greatest goofball lie in our modern culture is often brought to bear. "You can't judge me!" is flipped around like a poker chip these days. "After all, even Jesus said, ‘Judge not, lest ye be judged!’" ~ Oh yes, Jesus did say that. Once again, however, this is just another verse lifted out of context and waved about as if Jesus advocated checking one's brains at the door. Even before looking into Scripture, just pause for a moment and think about this: without basic reasoning and judgment, no decision could ever be made, no moral conundrum resolved, no logic would or could be considered universally reasonable, sound, or reliable. And yet you made a judgment about which shirt to wear today. You judge (or ought to judge) whether or not to make that sarcastic comment at work. You judge which child is most likely telling the truth. You telling me I have no right to judge * is * pronouncing judgment upon me..! (You hypocrite! Stop judging!) ~ On and on goes this ridiculous notion . . . So let us examine what the Bible teaches about judging . . .

The Bible describes two broad kinds of judging: (1) judging everyday events, people, circumstances, which includes the worth of amounts of money, goods, and services; and (2) the ultimate judgment of God, reserved for Him alone, when He will determine the final quality or worth of the life and works of every man, woman, and child. The first type outlines practical matters of use-your-brain logic, simple deduction, and standard reasoning. The second type is Judgment with a capital 'J' reserved only for God. He is, and only can be, the one True Judge in such matters of eternal gravity. This often misquoted verse is found in two places: Matthew 7:1 and Luke 6:37. Taken as free-standing statements on their own, they could seem to imply that no judging anywhere of any kind is allowable (as bizarre as that would be). However, consider just one of them in proper context:

  “Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others,
you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.
  “Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no
attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, ‘Let
me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your
own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you
will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.
  “Do not give dogs what is sacred; do not cast your pearls before pigs. If you do,
they may trample them under foot, and turn and tear you to pieces.”

— (Jesus) Matthew 7:1-6  

Would you not have to make a judgment to gauge the 'mote' or sawdust in your friend's eye, while at the same time judging that the 'plank' in your own face was (in your opinion) trivial at best? (I know, this can get pretty ridiculous rather quickly, but such are the times in which we live.) Even more perplexing is this: right after saying "Don't judge others" Jesus goes on to describe certain people as "pigs" or "dogs"! That sounds rather judgmental, wouldn't you say? — How can this be resolved? — Worse yet, Jesus commanded His followers to judge others based on their works and not by their appearances (see below). Another way to say this is: use standard common sense when considering the legitimacy of others and their claims (not to the exclusion of investigative reasoning if/when necessary, but as a basic foundation). And later on, He challenged someone else to judge between different degrees of sin based on simple logical reasoning:

“Stop judging by mere appearances, but instead judge correctly.”

— (Jesus) John 7:24 
 

  Pilate said, “Don’t you realize I have power either to free you
or to crucify you?”
  Jesus answered, “You would have no power over me if it were
not given to you from above. Therefore the one who handed me
over to you is guilty of a greater sin.”           — John 19:10-11

 

  He said to the crowd: “When you see a cloud rising in the west, immediately
you say, ‘It’s going to rain,’ and it does. And when the south wind blows, you
say, ‘It’s going to be hot,’ and it is. Hypocrites! You know how to interpret
the appearance of the earth and the sky. How is it that you don’t know how
to interpret this present time?
  “Why don’t you judge for yourselves what is right?”      — Luke 12:54-57

 big bug

The entire chapter of Matthew 23 is nothing but Jesus tearing into the religious leaders of the day, calling them virtually every name under the sun for their hypocrisy and for misleading God's people! Jesus addressed great crowds as recorded in Matthew chapters 5-7 (the 'Sermon on the Mount') where the "Don't judge lest ye be judged" phrase is found. It is widely believed He directed this statement to these same hypocritical religious leaders, as He would do on occasion when teaching large gatherings. He thought nothing of singling out certain groups or individuals to make a point. In context, then, the statement "Judge not, lest ye be judged" followed by examples of comparative judging and judging the character of others, is more of a warning against hypocrisy rather than some general call NOT to properly and intelligently assess persons and situations. This also destroys any cultural claims to "my truth" versus "your truth" or something made out as "true for them". Opinions are one thing; objective truth is quite another. Opinions may be freely made about any Truth; but it does not work the other way around. Proper judging — using your brain and the sense in your head based upon evidential knowledge and natural law — leveraged upon the standards originating in the very Author of Life is the only sensible measure by which to sense reality and gauge matters in this life. Otherwise, greater levels of social anarchy will eventually dismantle any group, community, or nation (which is literally what is happening right now here in America). Some claim that there simply is no Absolute Truth, that all 'truths' are relative. Sure, some things are relative, as in this bug is larger in relation to that other one. But it is an absolute truth to declare that they are both bugs. Paul gets practical in this Biblical example:

 small bug

I wrote to you in my letter not to associate with sexually immoral people — not at all meaning the people of this world who are immoral, or the greedy and swindlers, or idolaters. In that case you would have to leave this world! But now I am writing to you that you must not associate with anyone who claims to be a brother or sister but is sexually immoral or greedy, an idolater or slanderer, a drunkard or swindler. Do not even eat with such people. What business is it of mine to judge those outside the church? Are you not to judge those inside? God will judge those outside. “Expel the wicked person from among you.”

— 1 Corinthians 5:9-13  

A number of Christian principles are presented here: (1) We are expected to associate with those 'in the world' as witnesses in friendship, but not to become so chummy and/or dependent as to become 'unequally yoked' with them in life or fellowship (see 2 Corinthians 6:14); (2) Those who claim to follow Christ but still engage in excessive sin should, if habitually unrepentant, be avoided to the point of not even sharing so much as lunch together; and (3) We are absolutely called to judge one another as believers in the body of the church, not in some grand Judgment sense reserved only for God, but in love and mutual respect, helpful and hopeful on behalf of those who may be struggling or potentially backsliding. God has not commissioned Christians to , but we are commissioned to inspect the obvious fruit in one's life ~ especially our own! (Here is why, and here is how [PDF]) The difference between one who 'slips' and one who is a full-on hypocrite can readily be seen in their lifestyle. Everyone is plainly known by their actions and deeds (Proverbs 20:11). It's quite a simple matter. As to the gentle-yet-firm approach the Bible teaches... well, that is a study for another time, but Scriptures like 2 Timothy 3:16-17, James 5:19-20, Galatians 6:1, Matthew 18:15-17, and 2 Timothy 2:25-26 can pave the way if you're interested in digging deeper into that topic.

In 1 Corinthians chapters 5 through 7, Paul judges a truly twisted case of sexual immorality, speaks about marriage and even living alone if necessary, describing all the while how to judge such situations, even explaining how we will one day judge angels [!!] (1 Corinthians 6:3). There are countless more resources and books investigating this topic, but in case you still find the entire subject a bit foggy, consider this old web page link featuring an excellent, launchable/downloadable 20-minute sermon entitled "The Truth About Judging". Another article answers "What does the Bible mean that we are not to judge others?" This one just flat-out asks "Is It Right to Judge?" And finally, "Jesus and Paul Call Us to Judge" in this way:

If someone claims to be a follower of Jesus but is walking in open, persistent, unrepentant sin, then we are to "judge" them — meaning, make a right judgment and cut off all fellowship, with the goal being their repentance. ~ That kind of judgment saves and liberates and redeems.
 

But among you there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality,
or of any kind of impurity, or of greed, because these are improper
for God's holy people.                             — Ephesians 5:3

 

Let marriage be held in honor among all, and let the marriage bed be
undefiled, for God will judge the sexually immoral and adulterous.

— Hebrews 13:4    
 

Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows.
Whoever sows to please their flesh, from the flesh will reap destruction;
whoever sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life.
Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will
reap a harvest if we do not give up.           — Galatians 6:7-9

 
For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword,
it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the
thoughts and attitudes of the heart. Nothing in all creation is hidden from God's
sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we
must give account.                                                          —  Hebrews 4:12-13
 

“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin
  destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves
  treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where
  thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your
  heart will be also.”                                    —  (Jesus) Matthew 6:19-21

 
 cozy fireplace
 raging house fire
The Bible is 100% absolutely clear on matters of homosexuality and all other forms of sexual immorality. There are lots of other Scriptures and examples of how and why such practices are considered vile and wicked in the eyes of God. There is an old saying: Sin is not bad because it's forbidden, sin is forbidden because it's bad .. bad for you, and bad for everyone around you! ~ C. S. Lewis wrote: "Aim at heaven and you will get Earth 'thrown in': aim at Earth and you will get neither." Sex is an amazing and wonderful expression of shared love, a true gift designed by God to be enjoyed within the bonds of marriage. It is like a fireplace in a cozy living room, wonderful and romantic. But if that fire escapes its proper bounds, the whole house will likely go up in flames! That fire may claim that it was "just born this way" but without submitting to self-control (or that of Another), it may very well destroy all that it touches. So it goes with all violations against God, but moreso with relational sins such as sexual immorality.

I do not struggle with same-sex attraction, but do contend with other sinful desires and impulses as is common to all flesh. I post this entry not in some weird 'judgment' against the LGBT community, but with the same Holy Mirror shining back on my own deep need for repentance and the Savior! (see Philippians 2:12-13) However, like my Lord, I do not take lightly those who claim to teach from the Bible but are themselves deceived, or worse, intentional liars hoping to mislead others. God will deal with them, should they continue on unrepentant ~ that is not my concern. (I actually pity them..) My concern rests among the thousands who might read their words or listen to their broadcasts and be deceived into thinking that the Bible condones homosexuality --

It most assuredly does not.

To one degree or another, we are all free to choose how we live, but make no mistake: everyone lives in service to Someone: either to God, or to the enemy who excels at promising freedom while enslaving every soul he can influence. (See 1 Peter 5:8) This is very real and very serious stuff, not to be taken in stride under some half-assumed, half-baked belief system. If you have read this far, then you know enough of God's truth regarding these matters to approach Him on your own recognizance, seeking to rectify your situation through Jesus Christ if need be. Or you may challenge what is presented here. ~ That's fine. You need not bother trying to 'prove away' anything on my account. I'm not the One to whom you will answer...

So, can you be a 'gay Christian'? In a word: No — no more than you could be a 'murderous Christian' or a 'thieving Christian' or a bigtime 'greedy Christian'. This is not to say Christianity requires perfection ~ that would disqualify ALL believers! Remember, there is a fundamental difference between a Christian who occasionally slips in a sin, immediately repents, and truly rejects his/her sinful way(s), as opposed to those who would embrace, defend, and even celebrate their sin, yet still claim to be Christ-followers. (?!) Such souls expect Him to just shrug off their behaviors which stand in complete opposition to His revealed Word. The very nature of the Christian experience revolves around allowing the Holy Spirit (called 'Holy' for a reason) to work in one's heart, convicting of sin, which leads to repentance, that being the absolute forsaking of unrighteous practices, all for the glory of God and the assured promise of eternal life!

                        "No, Jesus Would Not Bake a Cake for a Gay Wedding"                       
 
God’s standards do not require the consent of society. As stated earlier, the Bible is all too clear that marriage is a God-defined, God-ordained, heterosexual union between a man and a woman . . . What Jesus would do is lovingly entreat these men in the same manner as He did the woman who was caught in the act of a different sin, adultery, saying to them, “Go. From now on sin no more.” And, having repented of their sin, Jesus, just as He did for the thief on the cross in Luke 23:42-43, would welcome these two men into the family of God, where they would remain with Him for all eternity.

Even adult children raised by gay couples have gathered to oppose legalizing same-sex (so-called) 'marriage', citing the detrimental effects such a 'family' structure has on children. (see this article from Jan 28, 2015) Some things truly are just self-evident. The only reason we are facing this global phenomenon now is not due to some recent pluralistic enlightenment; it is due to the self-centered desires of mankind leading to self-imposed lies instead of owning up to personal accountability. (Curiously, all of this dovetails with pre-tribulation rapture eschatological studies in a way that could never have been engineered by man, which was covered in last month's post) In his own way, one car repair shop owner has expressed his refusal to drink from this tainted cultural Kool-Aid. He has chosen to "Turn Away Openly Gay Customers ... And That's Legal" (4/16/15) which of course has drawn a fair share of protest. His point of view finds a place here because of his no-nonsense and logical reasoning:

"Homosexuality is wrong, period. If you want to argue this fact
 with me, then I will put your vehicle together with all bolts and
 no nuts and you can see how that works."    (Brian Klawiter)
   
   ruined car
 
Rainbow Power

A strange irony hangs over the LGBT community, flapping in the very fabric of the symbol chosen to represent their pride. The 'gay flag' originally featured eight colors: seven drawn from the natural rainbow, plus an additional stripe of hot pink (natch). A few ill-timed coloring deficiencies in textiles forced this down to the six stripes seen waving over the last 30+ years. An entire generation has grown up now believing that every rainbow means nothing more than homosexual solidarity. As an interesting side note, the number 7 represents perfection in the Bible, whereas the number 6 represents the imperfect and fallen state of man . . . (odd ancillary symbolism) —

   real rainbow  rainbow flag  

The LGBT community has misappropriated God's rainbow and its original meaning, twisting it to serve their own anti-biblical agenda. This is no exaggeration. God first presented the rainbow to Noah after the flood as an eternal promise to never again destroy the earth by flood (Genesis 8:9-17), which itself was His response to the universal wickedness promoted throughout the earth:

The Lord saw how great the wickedness of the human race had become
on the earth, and that every inclination of the thoughts of the human
heart was only evil all the time. The Lord regretted that he had made
human beings on the earth, and his heart was deeply troubled. So the
Lord said, “I will wipe from the face of the earth the human race I have
created — and with them the animals, the birds and the creatures that
move along the ground — for I regret that I have made them.” But Noah
found favor in the eyes of the Lord. This is the account of Noah and his
family. Noah was a righteous man, blameless among the people of his
time, and he walked faithfully with God . . .       —  Genesis 6:5-9

"Did you know that the ‘Gay-Pride’ Flag Actually Mocks God?" ◄ This article goes into this in detail, but can be a bit glitchy (forcing a "LIKE US!" prompt after scrolling down a little bit) so I will just quote a key section of it below. Pay special attention to the part in the middle:

When Noah and his family were off the ark, God made them a promise that he would never again flood the earth — no matter HOW evil humanity became. So to ensure that all of humanity remembered his promise, God gave us a ‘Token’ (gift). The purpose of this token was to remind us of his promise whenever we see the rain fall upon the earth — and that gift was the Rainbow. (Gen 9:12-17) The rainbow is a contract from God to mankind. In this contract, God gives humanity his Word that he will never again flood the entire earth — no matter what. Therefore when we see thousands of homosexuals marching in the streets with the Rainbow as their flag — they are essentially implying that they are proud of their sexual immorality whether God likes it or not — while simultaneously reminding God of the contract that he made with humanity never to flood the earth again. Keeping in mind that sexual immorality was one of the very reasons God flooded the earth in the first place — We can clearly see how this is a provocative declaration towards The Most High.

Fortunately, I am certain that God knows that many of the people marching are not fully aware of the biblical significance of using the rainbow (contract) as their gay-pride flag, which is why I believe he has been so merciful to them. But whether they realize it or not, the masses who gather together to celebrate their sexual immorality and those who carry these colorful flags, are essentially provoking God to wrath in their ignorance. In the book of Deuteronomy, we can read about the children of Israel who provoked the Lord in the wilderness and were almost destroyed [completely as a nation].

Quoting from a couple 2015 articles by Darrel B. Harrison...  

"Same-Sex Marriage and the Misbranding of ‘Rainbow Theism’"
 

The misconception that God’s “unconditional love” somehow circumvents or renders impotent His other immutable attributes, particularly His holiness, is held by countless millions of heterosexual Christians as well which, in my mind, begs the question: how is it that we are so easily convinced that God will forgive our sins, yet so dogmatic in our belief that He will not punish them?

How can you trust what the Bible says about God in one respect but not in another?

What this misapplication of the symbolism of the rainbow is demonstrating is that it is much easier for us to believe in God [(theist)] than it is to believe God [(theologian)].

In the first of the four gospels, Matthew, the narrative of the birth of Christ describes Jesus as the One who will save us from our sins, not sign off on them.

 
"On Same-Sex Marriage and Viewing God as a Divine Gallup Poll"
 

"Jesus will save us from our sins, not sign off on them." ~ So very true and accurate; however, our pursuit of sin is only symptomatic of our deeper, currupt spiritual tendencies. Pastor Robert Morris recently pointed out that, "People don't go to hell for sin; they go to hell for unbelief." I find it interesting how so many 'gay Christians' claim to believe in God, attend some kind of church, and (choose to) believe they are in good standing with God. However, James from the Bible would probably state something like this: “You believe that there is one God. You do well. Even the demons believe — and tremble!” (James 2:19) What you believe informs, shapes, and empowers everything you do and all that you're about. Words are cheap; anyone can claim that they 'believe in God'. But are such convictions this demonstrated in one's life? Jesus would ask:

“Why do you call Me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and not do the things which I say?”

— (Jesus) Luke 6:46  
 
Articles and Other Online Resources

Mine is certainly not the only voice addressing such timely concerns. So many other writers and theologians are far more studied and experienced in life, so I will conclude with a (mostly) chronological gallery of articles and other resources that dig deeper and explore other pertinent matters. The headlines speak for themselves, but I have parsed a bit of info now and then to provide a more detailed snapshot of a few of them. These are well researched, well written, and offer the truth about a great many things in a loving and respectful manner, especially as seen in Michael Brown's work . . .

Debunking the claims (widely dismissed now) that "Homosexuality Exists in Nature" and a postulation about imposing any limits on the basis of matrimony: "Why Two? The Question Gay Activists Cannot Answer".

Here is another excellent (much shorter) answer for the topic at hand: "What Does The Bible Teach Concerning Homosexuality?" ~ and a disconcerting political article by Michael Brown addressing "Their Next Goal: Put Christian 'Bigots' in Jail":

 
Writing in 2007 with reference to LGBT activist goals in ENDA (the Employment Non-Discrimination Act), New Testament scholar Robert Gagnon warned, “The bill will virtually codify you as a bigot so far as the federal government is concerned if you oppose homosexual practice on moral grounds. The biggest fallout from the bill is the establishment of ‘sexual orientation’ (defined as ‘homosexuality, heterosexuality, or bisexuality’) as a specially protected category of federal law. As sure as night follows day, this will be the proverbial foot in the door by proponents of homosexual practice that will lead, eventually but irrevocably, to ‘gay marriage’ (mandated by the U.S. Supreme Court), a nationally enforced indoctrination of children into the homosexualist agenda in schools and the criminalizing of opposition to homosexual practice at the national level.”
2013:
"EU High Court Rules Gay Agenda Trumps Christianity" (1/16/13)

"How I Know David and Jonathan Weren't Gay" (6/5/13) J. Lee Grady
 Some of this is difficult to read because of the audacities put forth by gay adherents, but it addresses a LOT of timely cultural key points.

"What Was the Relationship Between David and Jonathan?" (gotQuestions.org)

"Man Arrested for Quoting Bible on Homosexual Sin" (7/9/13) (Culture News: check out their topical sidebar articles!)
 Such occurrences are becoming routine anymore, gaining notoriety in the U.S. as early as 2010.

"Seven Propositions That Should Shape How Christians Think About And Respond To Homosexuality" (2013) Bob Lepine

2014:
"Street Preacher Arrested for Preaching Homosexuality Is a Sin" (1/13/14) Ann Carroll

"Some Honest Questions for Professing 'Gay Christians'" (4/21/14) Michael Brown (4 lynx/pages)
1. Are you 100 percent sure that your interpretation of Scripture regarding homosexuality is correct?
2. Do your beliefs start with certainty about the authority of Scripture, or do they start with certainty about your “sexual orientation”?
3. What do you say to those people who are genuinely ex-gay or to those who are still same-sex attracted but have chosen to separate themselves to the Lord unless He changes them?
4. If you were convinced that God opposed all forms of homosexual practice, would you follow Him anyway?

"Psychiatrists Back Down on 'Born Gay' Claim" (5/30/14) (Christian Concern)

"Nonexistent 'Gay Gene' Hidden for Years: Doctors" (5/31/14) (Culture News: check out their topical sidebar articles!)
 Also see "Lesbianism NOT Genetic: Study" (2010)

"How Should the Church Respond in Perilous Times?" (10/22/14) Mat Staver

"What the Bible really says about Homosexuality" (10/31/14) Michael Brown

2015:
"Response to the Gay Debate: The Bible & Homosexuality" (1/13/15) Douglas Jacoby
 The website layout is janky ~ you may have to scroll down until you find the article itself, but the material is very tactful and respectfully presented.

"Adults Raised by Gay Couples Speak Out Against Gay 'Marriage' in Federal Court" (1/23/15) Lauretta Brown

"'Gay Christians' Now Becoming the Norm?" (1/30/15) Dr. Terry Mortenson
If we are to be faithful to Scripture, we must say, lovingly but clearly, what God says about sin, including the sin of homosexuality.

"How Do 'Cisgenders' Fit Into the New Sexual Tolerance?" (4/10/15) Rob Schwarzwalder
One's gender cannot be undone by cosmetic changes or even surgery: DNA is permanent.

"The New 'Gay Right' Not to Be offended Does Not Trump the First Amendment" (4/13/15) Matt Barber

"James Dobson: Christians Soon To Be 'Hated Minority'" (4/22/15) Bob Unruh
“The LGBT militants are not asking to be left alone,” he said. “They are demanding that we accept the morality of homosexuality and same-sex marriages and manifest that acceptance, under pain of law and sanctions, in our daily lives.”

"Celebrating Confusion: The Crisis of Bruce (Not Caitlyn) Jenner" (6/2/15) John Burton
 The BEST perspective I have found regarding Bruce Jenner's gender/identity confusion issues.

"Should Christians Call Bruce Jenner Caitlyn?" (6/8/15) Rob Schwarzwalder
 Another fantastic, straight-forward (and shorter) examination of the evidence.

"I'm Called Stupid For Rejecting Female Fathers" (6/25/15) Michael Brown

"Christian Preachers Brutally Beaten at Gay Pride Festival" (6/30/15) Todd Starnes

"Liberals and LGBT activists set their sights on Christian Churches in call to remove tax exempt status" (7/12/15) Alex Thomas

"Supreme Court or Supreme Being — Who Will You Obey?" (7/5/15) Ricki Pepin

"Oregon Declares War on the Christian Faith" (7/7/15) Michael Brown

"Dr. Brown Has 40 Answers and 2 Questions for 'Gay' Christian Matthew Vines" (7/10/15) Michael Brown
1. Can you give me a single, unambiguous biblical example of a God-blessed homosexual relationship?
2. Do you agree that every reference to homosexual practice in the Bible is decidedly negative?
I appeal to everyone reading this article to read with heart and mind, to search the Word carefully and prayerfully, to listen to followers of Jesus who have renounced homosexual practice, and to be moved by what our God says more than what our (often fickle and misleading) emotions might say. It is the truth alone that will set us free and, to repeat, Jesus is enough for all of us.

"Major Breaking News: Males Are Not Females" (7/20/15) Michael Brown

"University of California Gives Students Six Gender Identity Categories" (7/29/15) Jonathan Turley

"Dobson: Obergefell Fight NOT About Marriage" (8/27/15) Bob Unruh

"Zis Is What I Call Social Madness" (8/31/15) Michael Brown
It is one thing to have compassion on those who struggle with deep-seated gender identity issues, and I will call for compassion and understanding as long as I have a voice. It is another thing to turn the world upside down because of the very real struggles of a tiny percentage of people, no matter how fragile they are, no matter how loved by God they are, and no matter how much we want to see them find peace and wholeness.

Do we require an entire school to use sign language rather than talk because of the presence of one deaf child?

Do we require all the children to learn braille and read with their eyes closed because of one blind student in their classes?

Then why is a university calling on students to use gender neutral pronouns?

And why are children's schools calling on teachers to drop all gender distinctions?
 
book: "Can You Be Gay and Christian?"
"Can You Be Gay And Christian?" (Michael Brown) © 2014 / 256 pgs

I have not read this yet, but I am familiar with the author's work, and it is garnering rave reviews even among LGBTer's! I won't give away the surprise ending, but I will quote from one of the many heart-felt reviews found on AMAZON: "Dr. Brown does not speak from a place of homophobia. He presents a message of loving response to the person identified as homosexual." [Taryn]

Even a gay man of 70 years reviewed this book just a few weeks ago:

I am a gay man, in the sense that I have undeniable same-sex attraction and have never felt any other in my 70 years on this planet. Yet I am a follower of Our Lord Jesus Christ. Believe me, I am not a "self-loathing" gay; I have come to know the truth that homosexuality, as Dr. Brown clearly explains in this sensitively and lovingly written book, is just another symptom of the broken, fallen world we have inherited. Do I think I was born gay? The simple answer is "Yes." The more complicated answer is "I was born with a homosexual propensity, and a very strong one." Do I think my sexual orientation can be changed? The simple answer is "No." Do I think that my sexual behavior can change? The equally simple answer to that is "Yes, and it should." Even an atheist can understand the lack of anatomical complementarity and therefore biological purpose in male-to-male or female-to-female sexuality. I lived in a committed, monogamous, loving relationship with another man for 45 years until he died in my arms. I came to know The Lord a couple years later and at that time knew the truth about my homosexual nature. Dr. Brown has eloquently articulated the truth about homosexual desire in a caring, patient and altogether heartfelt way while unmistakably supporting gay people as God's children who, though in need of correction, are nonetheless loved unconditionally.

 


In conclusion, I will provide a couple o' lynx to YouTube videos (below). The first one features a manic exposé of mind-bending European change-programs and indoctrination policies aimed at children. WARNING: 18+ ONLY viewing! "Trans Norway" (12½ minutes · posted 4/8/15) contains * REALLY * DISTURBING * images, topics, identity-destroying, soul-crushing, educational systems, and borderline psychotic parenting (complete with a bizarre, spazzy, stressed-out 80's-sounding soundtrack accompanied by a calm newsy-sounding narrator).

In stark contrast, "Ravi Zacharias on the Christian View of Homosexuality" (11½ minutes · posted 4/29/15) provides a thorough and genuine appeal to address these very topics. I would recommend viewing Ravi's videos to * ANYONE *

TransNorway   Ravi Zacharias
Click to watch!
 TransNorway

 YouTube logo

Click to watch!
 Ravi Zacharias
     

Regarding the Church      "'Gay Christians' Now Becoming the Norm?"

Christians should not hate gay people (whether they profess to be Christians or not) just as they should not hate heterosexual adulterers or gossips or thieves or wife-abusers or abortionists or corrupt politicians, and so on. We are to love people because God does (John 3:16). In fact, Jesus commanded us to love even our enemies (Matthew 5:43–44), whether they are political, moral, or religious enemies.

God didn’t make a person to be a homosexual, just as He didn't make a person to be a fornicating, adulterous heterosexual. May it always be true that an LGBTQ person can come into our local church and feel welcomed and affirmed as a person made in the image of God and as a fellow sinner in need of the saving grace of Christ. But may it never be so that the church of Jesus Christ will be a family that tolerates practicing LGBTQ people who claim to be Christians and who want the church to affirm and celebrate their sexual immorality.

Syncretism (mixing true and false religion) was a frequent problem in ancient Israel, and it has been a repeated problem throughout church history as well. We are not truly worshipping God (in a way acceptable to Him) when we are living in serious disobedience to His Word.


Regarding National Policy     "Dobson: Obergefell Fight NOT About Marriage"

“How unthinkable it is that in some states kindergartners, barely out of babyhood, are being taught adult perverse behavior that should never be discussed in the classroom... LGBT propaganda will be blatantly taught to wide-eyed kids who are too young to understand how they are being manipulated. There is no consideration that the messages given will contradict the beliefs and convictions of millions of parents. The wishes of moms and dads will have been overridden and superseded by five justices who have a better plan for their kids,” he writes.

Dobson cited Rod Dreher, senior editor at the American Conservative, who wrote for Time: “The alarm that the four dissenting justices sounded in their minority opinions is chilling. Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Antonin Scalia were particularly scathing in pointing out the philosophical and historical groundlessness of the majority’s opinion.”

He says it happened in Germany under Nazi dictator Adolf Hitler, who said: “Your child belongs to us already … what are you? You will pass on. Your descendants, however, now stand in the new camp. In a short time they will know nothing but this new community.”


In presenting this information, I am only sharing what the Bible really does say about the subject of homosexuality. Some might glance over this webpage and declare me 'homophobic' which (itself is a fundamentally inaccurate misnomer and) is blatantly misapplied in my case. I harbor a deep love and sympathy for the LGBT populace, and ultimately group myself in with the same 'lostness' whenever I too pursue a course different or opposite to what is Best as expressed through God's Word. We are all sinners, in fatal need of a Savior: the only Savior Jesus Christ! My biggest concern is with the hypocritical 'tolerance' that has now become national policy. Having shared all that I have here, it matters very little to me whether I am favored or 'liked' out in the public forum. Anyone who has a problem with this message doesn't have a problem with me, necessarily ~ they have a problem with God and with His Word.

 
• Does the Bible support homosexuality or any form of same-sex (so-called) 'marriage'?
  No - absolutely not! It never has, and it never will. The Bible resoundingly condemns all such practices.
Anyone telling you otherwise is either grossly misinformed or a liar intentionally denying the truth.
 
• Can someone be a 'gay Christian'?
  No ~ or not for long, anyway! Or to be more precise, not engaging in any kind of homosexual practices.
 
• Is Bruce Jenner a woman?
  No ~ DNA cannot be re-wired no matter how much you adjust one's outward facade or manipulate body tissue.
He is still completely male, though dreadfully confused (and sadly, publicly encouraged).
 
• What about transvestites, and/or those who are prone to same-sex attraction?
  What about them? They need to repent before God just like everyone else: alcoholics, swindlers, those who lust... (get in line)
Not surprisingly, the Bible also has plenty to say against cross-dressing and misrepresenting one's gender.
 
• Is it really OK to judge?
  Only God can rightly judge eternal matters; however, we are instructed to judge people by the 'fruit' of their lives ( why / how [PDF]).
Jesus Himself taught that neglecting to employ such basic intellectual observation and assessment skills is irresponsible and foolish.
 
• Is it not Loving to just 'live and let live'?
  It is not loving to NOT speak the truth, and it is certainly not loving to mislead others through either direct means or neglect.
People like Matthew Vines and Erica Williams Simon are dead wrong in their misrepresentation of God's Word.
 
• What if I simply cannot shake my same-sex attraction no matter what I try?
  Ask [pray to] God for help, just like single heterosexual Christians must contend with longings for a lover — same principles apply.
Seek godly guidance, support, and accountability in a good Bible-based church. (There's more, but I'm trying to keep these answers short!)
 

I do not question the sincerity with which people seek to believe what they will. But you can be sincere all you like, and still be sincerely WRONG . . or worse, sincerely misleading others astray! When there is so much hanging in the balance, especially as the days grow darker, it is essential that the Truth is upheld with integrity. I for one would not trifle lightly with matters of eternal consequence, but give it all some serious thought and, as necessary, real-world investigation. The GOOD NEWS is that God offers complete forgiveness to ALL who come to Him in repentance! This is the ULTIMATE "GOOD NEWS"! Salvation in this life (and eternally!) is offered as a free gift for anyone who takes Him at His Word. It really is that simple! He made it that simple! Here is a very brief Call to Salvation available online, and a 1-minute video of Billy Graham leading a Prayer of Salvation if you are ready (even without "all the answers" ~ that's totally OK) to seek the Lord. If you truly wish to know God and turn your life over to Him for the salvation of your soul, don't worry - you don't have to 'get cleaned up' before turning to Jesus! That is His job to work in and through you as you read your Bible and seek Him through prayer, worship (start at church) and good Christian fellowship. Check out these two links (above) and find a Christian friend or two, and start attending a good Bible-based church in your area. Any good church will readily provide you with a Bible of your very own if you do not already have one.  :-D  I would recommend you start reading the gospel of John (4th book in the New Testament) to get to know who Jesus is, what He did on earth, and all sorts of wonderful things! The apostle Paul describes in Romans 6:1-14 how sin is abolished within us and we are made to live eternally through Christ ~ If you read some of the Bible and it doesn't seem to make much sense to you at first, don't worry! First, pray that God would send His Holy Spirit to guide you in reading His Word (He will, trust me - that's His primary method of guiding people). Also ask your Christian friend(s) for help in understanding Scripture. They should be glad to help! And get in touch a local CHRISTIAN church (not Mormon, not Jehovah's Witness, not Muslim, and I would steer clear from Unitarian and Catholic churches) and ask to visit with a pastor, who will also be glad to help you! NOTE: If you encounter a different attitude than one of loving willingness, that is a sure sign that it is NOT a good godly Bible-based church. The Bible says . . .

 

Seek the Lord while he may be found;
   call on him while he is near.
Let the wicked forsake their ways
   and the unrighteous their thoughts.
Let them turn to the Lord, and he will have mercy on them,
   and to our God, for he will freely pardon. 

— Isaiah 55:6-7  
 

I tell you, now is the time of God's favor,
now is the day of salvation!

— 2 Corinthians 6:2  
 

If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in
your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.
For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and
it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.
Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved!

— 2 Corinthians 6:2      
 
 
 
 Don't drink the Kool-Aid
Don't drink the · 'rainbow' · Kool-Aid    

 

I close with a sermon by our pastor from this past weekend (8/30/15) that is One Of The Best messages I have * ever * heard. It just so happens to address a lot of the logic concepts presented in this post, ending with a logic-based call to Salvation that I could not have written better myself:

 

"What is the Gospel" (plus service notes) from Desert Breeze Community Church
 
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(2015)  08