It is true that many “Christians” do not believe that the homosexual can be changed. To them, God is not really omnipotent, but rather, impotent; not really able to save “the whosoevers” nor able to save “to the uttermost,” as the gospel really teaches. Too many “Christians,” sadly, are “Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away,” warns the apostle Paul in 2 Timothy 3:5.
This tells us something about the necessity of being carefully selective about forming spiritual relationships with church groups or any other support group.
In light of this counsel, I must acknowledge that my message is not the most popular one, for so many people wanting to be saved do not understand what salvation is to be from. Many people want to be saved from the penalty of sin and to receive the gift of eternal life. But Jesus came to save His people from their sins, not just from the penalty of their sins. (Matthew 1:21) Actually, being saved from the penalty of sin is only the first of three phases of salvation.
1) As the all-sufficient atoning Lamb of God, Jesus saves us from the penalty of sin.
2) But as Priest and High Priest ministering in the Heavenly Sanctuary, (see the book of Hebrews), as illustrated through the entire Jewish economy of old, Jesus also promises to save His people from the power of sin, by cleansing them and giving them grace, (divine strength), to overcome.
3) Thirdly, as King of kings and Lord of lords Jesus promises to save His people from the very presence of sin when He comes to take His children home at His soon second coming.
Isn’t He amazing?! Offering to save us from the penalty of sin, the power of sin, and the presence of sin!
But, as stated above, too many Christians want only to be saved from the penalty of sin. Therefore, they do not have the promised enmity or hatred for sin in their hearts (Genesis 3:15), and they want to cling to it still, though claiming to be saved. To these I simply ask, “What has He been able to save you from…?”
To fully understand what Jesus offers to do for us, we must accept the Bible definition of sin, which is “the transgression of the law.” (1 John 3:4) To reject any portion of God’s great moral law of 10 commandments is to practice transgression of the law, equaling sin, the wages of which is death. (Romans 6:23) For James tells us in James 2:10,11: “For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all. For he that said, Do not commit adultery, said also, Do not kill. Now if thou commit no adultery, yet if thou kill, thou art become a transgressor of the law.”
James is obviously talking here about the 10 commandments. And we must realize that no one commandment is the law. The law is composed of 10 commandments, based upon 2 great principles: supreme love to God and love to man. (Also referred to as the first and second commandments in Matthew 22:36-40: “Master, which is the great commandment in the law? Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.”)
Yet, so many Christians, when faced with one commandment which they do not wish to accept, then turn around and say the law was nailed to the cross. What they really mean is, the fourth commandment of the law was nailed to the cross…! But nowhere in the Bible can that be substantiated.
What am I getting at? (This reply is turning into an epistle…, or a featured article…)
For me to be consistent in my message of victory over the sin of homosexuality, I must teach victory over “sin” period. Therefore, I must be able to accept the Bible’s definition of sin. If I am then consistent in my belief in the legitimacy of all the 10 commandments, (not just 9 of them), and if I practice keeping all 10, (not just 9), then I can expect the Lord to supply me sufficient grace to keep the 7th one as well, which, in the past, was the area of my besetting sin of homosexuality. If I choose to reject one point of the law, then I have no assurance that God will grant me the grace I need to consistently keep any other point of the law, or to teach anyone else how to either.
Paul counsels us in Romans 6:1,2: “What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, (in transgression of the law of 10 commandments), that grace may abound? God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?”
And in 1 Corinthians 9:27 he says, “But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.”
I’m hoping I am making sense here.
Anyway, this is all said in order to answer the question of how to find a safe haven in a church for support and nurturing? I have chosen a church group that seems to be most consistent in its theology of sin being the transgression of the law, the law of 10 commandments, the law spoken by God and written with His own finger as an expression of His own character.
When I came to the Lord 10 years ago, I came to Him for salvation from sin, not in sin. For the promise is that Jesus came to save His people from their sins. In accepting what sin was, not only did I have to die to the sin of homosexuality and adultery of any kind, (which was transgression of the 7th commandment), but in all honesty, I had to also acknowledge the validity of His 4th commandment as well. The 4th commandment has to be just as valid today as “Thou shalt not steal, kill, bear false witness, dishonor your parents, covet, have any other gods, worship idols, or take the name of the Lord in vain.” Indeed, the 4th commandment is in the very heart of the 10. To omit it would be to cut out the very heart of God’s law!
Much ado is being made in Christian circles today about “under God” in our pledge of allegiance, yet we tend to rebel against God ourselves when it comes to “consistently” keeping His law, which is but a reflection of His own character. Are we “under God” or not…? Are we “under God,” or under the traditions of men…?
God tells us in various places in the Bible that the Sabbath was to be a sign between Himself and us that He, the Creator God, is our God, and we, in keeping His Sabbath, are His people. (See Ezekiel 20:12, 19,20) Not only is He the Creator God, He is the Re-Creator God, the Redeemer, the Restorer, the Renewer.
Revelation 2 & 3 give a number of promises to those who understand the definition of sin and then become overcomers. And Revelation 21:7 says, “He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son.”
“But as many as received him, to them gave he power (grace) to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name.” (John 1:12)
I thank God that through His grace, His divine strength, not through my own strength, that I can be an overcomer and be restored as one of His sons–one of His children!
All Power (Grace) to you!