23 Jan 2007

Is grace sufficient for gay lifestyle?

Submitted by theshovel
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There are several 'Grace' websites and an abundance of churches with the 'Grace' message but when I mention 'Gay' grace seemingly is not sufficient for such a life style. Your response is eagerly awaited. Regards Jim

I'm not a believer in lifestyles (including gay), for I see them as little more than fleshly designations and/or divisions of Life. But real life cannot be divided, and the continued attempts only create false illusions of life that keep strife going. Of course, I know what it is to judge according to such divisions, for to do so is part of my past history ... as it is also of yours. But I see it all as futility. There is a new creation in Christ, the old is done away ... even though it keeps presenting itself as valid.

Grace is about the real life of God that has been put within us through Christ, and he has made us sufficient in him ... with no division. Our feeble attempts to put up barriers inside Christ only reveal an ignorance about what our life really is.

Thoughts?

Jim :)

Thanks for your reply. I don't quite understand what you are saying. I would appreciate it if you could simplify your answer. Do you mean that being gay and in a gay relationship is not a barrier to having real life in Christ? Jim

Hi Jim,

Simplifying answers so they make sense in view of particular fleshly distinctions is the very reason you've run into confusion in the first place. After all, you have experienced a gracious leniency toward certain named sins, but not toward others, yes? You've seen grace extended toward liars who continue their dishonesty, thieves who continue to steal, and perhaps even fornicators who continue in their lifestyle ... and so you want to know why grace cannot be extended toward gays in the same way. Simple answers have been given to make many feel acceptance in view of their particular fleshly leanings, and yet these simple answers don't cross certain lines. Why not? Because they've been fashioned according to the accepted fleshly patterns of the groups or teachers that promote them.

Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God. Such were some of you; but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God. 1 Corinthians 6:9-11 NASB

Notice the lack of simplicity? That's only because it clashes with our modern forced simplicity. This is a good message because it demands a justification only found in a new and miraculous life, our inheritance in Christ. Now, while you, and many others, may focus upon one or two of the mentioned forms of those who are unrighteous, the whole statement pretty much destroys the bias of any who would pigeonhole one particular sinful condition. Notice, Paul did not write, Such were some of you, but you stopped doing those things, he instead demanded that what we are is found in our having been washed, sanctified and justified in Christ.

You want an answer based upon that which is recognized as gay according to the flesh. I cannot give you such an answer because it begs for a bogus distinction. If you are in Christ, you are not a gay who is in Christ, you are simply in Christ. There is no such thing as a gay Christian, any more so than a covetous Christian or a deceitful Christian or a heterosexual Christian, etc. In Christ, there is merely that which is born of God, that which has been raised up from the dead.

Now I say this, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable. 1 Corinthians 15:50

What is it that inherits the kingdom of God? It's simple: that which is born of God. If you are in Christ that is what you are ... that is all that you are.

For the love of Christ controls us, having concluded this, that one died for all, therefore all died;and He died for all, so that they who live might no longer live for themselves, but for Him who died and rose again on their behalf. Therefore from now on we recognize no one according to the flesh; even though we have known Christ according to the flesh, yet now we know Him in this way no longer. Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come. 2 Corinthians 5:14-17

I think it was Einstein who made the famous quote that says something like: as long as we keep using the same logic we'll keep coming up with the same kind of answers. You may get the simple answer you're asking for, but just remember that it will be infused with the same kind of logic that others use to create their own biased grace. There are no barriers of sin that Christ has not overcome, for he has made us new despite what any may say. For if we are in him, new we are.

Jim

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Comments

Thanks Jim for this post, which I just read 5 years after it was posted.  Still good points though.  We have been struggling with this issue since a couple of years ago when our Christian daughter expressed her gayness.  We told her that we still love her and always will, but could never agree that her lifestyle choices are acceptable to us or God. We also told her that if she is in Christ, He will never leave her or forsake her and that because and only because of His perfect sacrifice and resurrected Life living in her, she will remain clean and close, 24/7, no matter what.  

She was raised with an understanding of New Covenant Grace and many times has expressed her faith and trust in the finished work of Christ.  I have forwarded your post to her and told her that when all else falls away, the only two categories of humans are those who are in Christ and those who are not,  

We try to lovingly tolerate our pastor who frequently quotes I Cor. 6:9-11 implying that even professing as saved homosexuals will not inherit the Kingdom of God.  These sins describe some things that we were, but we were washed, justified …     And look at the very next verse 6:12 in which Paul says , “All things are lawful for me, but not everything is beneficial”.  Our Identity is not determined by behavior, but by birth, or more accurately, re-birth.  

We are saints who still sin and God still loves us because of Christ. 

Why do we (including me) still insist on eating from the wrong tree in the garden?   

After all this thrashing about, my conclusion is:    In Christ or Not in Christ.  All else is missing the point.  

theshovel's picture

In Christ or Not in Christ.  All else is missing the point.

Most excellent conclusion!

Jim

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