I recently received a surprising letter from someone representing a well-known Christian music ministry, suspecting me of attempting to sabotage their ministry with other Christian organizations, and challenging my understanding of the Gospel. Several members of this group are openly practicing homosexuals. The letter was very revealing regarding what I see as an unfortunate interpretation and understanding of the Gospel, especially as it relates to the Homosexual issue. For this reason I have elected to address our differences publicly, though without revealing the identity of the person or music ministry, for I am not out to sabotage any person or ministry. But I do think it important to preach the Word in its strength and purity in harmony with itself, rather than in contradiction with itself… After all, what is at stake is the eternal life of sinners in need of their Saviour from their sins. (See Matthew 1:21)
Excerpts from “the letter” (Emphasis mine as to points to be addressed):
“Ron, I was very disappointed to hear that you are again trying to sabotage [our] ministry by unnecessarily disseminating information about us… Contrary to your allegations all of us in [this ministry] are fully committed to spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ to all who come to hear us and we have ample evidence over the past 31 years that God has used us in mighty ways. So, who are you to decide that God shouldn’t be using us just because you disagree with the lifestyle of a couple of us in the group? I would ask that you read John 8:3-11 and see if you don’t find yourself in this scenario. We are all sinful human beings so what right do we have to cast stones at one another? Instead, we should be rejoicing in the fact that God is using us in various ways to bring others to a closer walk with Him. You have your ministry, the premise of which I wholeheartedly disagree with (and which has been proven time and time again not to work), but I don’t try to undermine your efforts. So, I would ask that you extend the same courtesy to us and let’s work together to finish spreadingthe Good News to the whole world so that Jesus can come again and take His children home!
“Your Brother in Christ, _____”
My response to “the letter”:
First of all, I do not know what you have heard, but let me assure you that I’m not out “to sabotage your ministry by unnecessarily disseminating information about you…”
Secondly, you speak of spreading the “gospel of Jesus Christ”. I would simply ask, “What is the gospel of Jesus Christ…?” To me it is stated plainly and simply by the angel Gabriel himself in Matthew 1:21 – “Thou shalt call his name Jesus, for he shall save his people from their sins.” FROM their sins, not IN their sins, and sin being the transgression of the law. From a Biblical standpoint, it is very clear to me that homosexuality is a sin issue, transgressing the 7th commandment of the law, and I don’t need to share with you all the texts with which you are already familiar. In Jeremiah 3, God says “Only acknowledge thine iniquity…and I will heal your backsliding.” My method of overcoming homosexuality over 20 years ago was in acknowledging that I was dealing with a SIN (iniquity) issue, and then applying God’s Biblical remedy for sin. It works! It really works!!
You referred me to John 8:3-11, the story of Mary being brought to Jesus under the accusation of committing adultery. In verse 11, Jesus says to Mary, “Neither do I condemn thee…” Apparently you wish to end the narrative at that compassionate statement. But we must be true to the story and realize that it was in even greater compassion that Jesus went on to say, “…Go, and sin no more.” “Stop breaking the 7th commandment”, Jesus was saying to Mary. And, she did. She stopped committing adultery. With Jesus’ bidding was His grace, His divine, enabling, transforming power. And by faith Mary grasped it and became an overcomer. It’s the same thing I teach in my ministry. I do not condemn the homosexual, but I do encourage him/her to “Go, and sin no more.” And, by God’s grace, this is working very well for the people I work with. I simply point them to the power in the Word, “It is written”, the same method Jesus used.
You went on to state that “we are all sinful human beings“. I must agree with you. However, we are not expected by our Saviour from sin to choose to continue living in sin. By so choosing, are we not denying Him the joy of setting us “free indeed…?” Jesus Himself stated that “If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free ideed.” Your statement that “we are all sinful human beings” reminds me of the frequently used excuse and rationale that people make to justify sinful behavior when they say, “Well, afterall, I’m only human.” It is important for the Christian to realize that to make such a statement is to actually, though perhaps unintentionally, deny Jesus Christ!
The apostle Peter stated, “Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord, According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virture: Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.” (2 Peter 1:2-4)
You see, our divine Saviour became a partaker of our humanity that we might be partakers of His divinity. “Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same…” (Hebrews 2:14) As Jesus was divine and partaking of humanity, so the Christian is to be human and partaking of divinity. The true Christian is not only human, “For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.” (Philippians 2:13)
This amazing truth is stated beautifully in the book Christ’s Object Lessons, p 333: “As the will of man co-operates with the will of God, it (the will of man) becomes omnipotent. Whatever is to be done at His command may be accomplished in His strength. All His biddings are enablings.”
You also referred to “a closer walk with Him.” Enoch had that “closer walk with Jesus” and it led to victory over sin, overcoming sin. He stopped sinning and attained perfection of character through his “close walk with Jesus.” By beholding Him we, too, become changed. We become like Him. The Bible is filled with promises to the “overcomer”, the overcomer of self, Satan, and sin.
You disagree with “the premise of [my] ministry” and say it has been proven to not work. So, I must ask, “Where’s the proof?” I am only sharing what has worked for myself. I myself am proof that it does work!! And I am far from alone in this experience. Your statement suggests that Jesus is impotent rather than omnipotent; that His promises are not dependable; that the wages of sin is not death; that we cannot expect to be “new creatures” in Christ our Re-Creator, with new motives, new tastes, and new tendencies.
Several people of our same background along with myself have formed a cooperative effort called “‘Coming Out’ Ministries”. We all testify to the power of God to transform the life. And I am witnessing some marvelous transformations in people I am working with. I’ve also come across a good number of people outside of my influence who have successfully overcome the gay lifestyle and are now living in harmony with Biblical principles. I’m not the only EX-Gay who is now happily married and parenting children… So, I cannot accept your premise that my Biblical approach to overcoming SIN does not work! That is the false theology of the accuser of the brethren…, whom we are to overcome by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of our testimony. (Revelation 12:11) The big question in my mind is, “What is the word of my testimony…?” That God ispowerless to save me from sin? Or that He is mighty to save, the whosoevers, from whatsoever, even to the uttermost? I truly believe that our testimony is to be one of victory over sin, even the sin of homosexuality, by the grace of God – by His divine, omnipotent, transforming power.
You asked that we work together to share the Good News… So, I must ask, “What is the Good News…?” Salvation IN sin, or salvation FROM sin…? Can two walk together, or work together, except they be agreed…? (Amos 3:3)
Let us heed the warning of the Apostle Paul found in Galatians 1:6, “I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel: (GRACE: Greek definition – “the divine influence upon the heart, and its reflection in the life”, i.e. divine, omnipotent, transforming power.) 1:7 Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. 1:8 But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. 1:9 As we said before, so say I now again, If any [man] preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.
Please, my friend, think on these things! There can be only one true gospel — resulting in salvation FROM sin.