With the rise of the Equality Act, which demands the inclusion of LGBTQ rights, it is clear that the moral fabric of our nation continues to unravel, and at an alarming rate. Gone are the days when our nation considered Christian living to be the modus operandi for its citizens. Oh, how our nation has fallen since its inception. Our founding fathers once boldly declared statements like these made by the second U.S. President, John Adams:
-“The general principles on which the fathers achieved independence were the general principles of Christianity. I will avow that I then believed, and now believe, that those general principles of Christianity are as eternal and immutable as the existence and attributes of God.”
-“Suppose a nation in some distant region should take the Bible for their only law book and every member should regulate his conduct by the precepts there exhibited. . . . What a Eutopia – what a Paradise would this region be!”
It is safe to say that America has turned its back on God through the systematic removal of both prayer and Scripture reading from the public institutions it has developed to train its youth. But far worse than our nation turning its back on God, is that of the Christian Church doing likewise. Recently, a group of Episcopal Church leaders banded together and co-authored an opinion piece in the Record Eagle, a local paper of Traverse City, entitled “It's Time to Make Amends.” This piece, which has received support from numerous liberal Church leaders, is an objurgating call to the Christian Church to alter its teaching on what the Bible clearly considers to be sin.
Their article states, “As clergy serving in the Episcopal tradition of Jesus Christ’s holy, catholic, and apostolic church we want to say with crystal clarity that it is not a sin to be gay, queer, non-binary, transgender, asexual or anywhere else on the spectrum of human gender and sexuality.” Upon reading this article, as a Pastor and minister of God’s Holy Word, I felt I needed to take a moment to respond to such a statement. First, I would like to ask the authors of this opinion piece, by what authority do you make these claims? The only authority that the holy, universal, and apostolic church of Christ has is the Word of God. I would like to remind these Episcopal leaders and others who are sympathetic to their egregious statements, that while the Bible most certainly calls us to love, it is also crystal clear that to be gay, queer, non-binary, transgender, asexual, or anywhere else on the spectrum of human gender and sexuality is indeed sinful. All such expressions are sinful because they challenge God’s authority and design. God is the sole authority on gender and sexuality for He is the one who designed them. Thus, rather than appeal to the emotions and feelings of fallen man, we should look to the Bible to determine what is and is not sin.
“So God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female he created them.”
“Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.”
“Male and female he created them, and He blessed them and named them Man when they were created.”
“You shall not lie with a male as with a woman; it is an abomination.”
“If a man lies with a male as with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination...”
“A woman shall not wear a man's garment, nor shall a man put on a woman's cloak, for whoever does these things is an abomination to the Lord your God.”
“No one whose testicles are crushed or whose male organ is cut off shall enter the assembly of the Lord.
“For this reason, God gave them up to dishonorable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature; and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error.”
1 Corinthians 6:9-10
“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.”
“just as Sodom and Gomorrah and the surrounding cities, which likewise indulged in sexual immorality and pursued unnatural desire, serve as an example by undergoing a punishment of eternal fire.”
It is the task of the Church, not to acquiesce to the world’s sinful indulgences, but to herald the gospel so that those enslaved to their sins might believe by faith in Christ Jesus and repent of their sinful behavior.
Jesus states in Luke 24:46-48
“Thus it is written, that the Christ should suffer and on the third day rise from the dead, and that repentance for the forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in his name to all nations...”
Rather than soften our view of sin, the church is tasked with lovingly proclaiming the gospel to those enslaved to sin in hopes that they might believe in Christ Jesus and be set free. And while it is true that the world will hate us for taking such a stance, that is to be expected. For Jesus, Himself stated that the world hates Him because he testifies that its works are evil. Furthermore, He states:
“…and you will be hated by all for my name’s sake. But the one who endures to the end will be saved.”
“If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you.”
The Episcopal leaders, in their article, continually appealed to the need for God’s people to be loving. Without question, it ought to be the Church’s deepest desire to love and glorify God as well as demonstrate genuine love for people. One of the most loving things we can do for our neighbors is warn them of the wrath to come. The Bible is clear that all who die in their sins will spend an eternity in hell and will be judged for the wicked acts they have committed. Only those who have been redeemed by faith in Christ will be saved.
John 3:16-21 states:
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God. And this is the judgment: the light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the light because their works were evil. For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his works should be exposed. But whoever does what is true comes to the light, so that it may be clearly seen that his works have been carried out in God.”
Therefore, the Church has no choice but to lovingly proclaim the gospel to all who will hear it in hopes that some might receive Christ by faith. Those who advocate acceptance and inclusion of sin are the ones who are advocating a theology of judgment, for they are leading those in sinful bondage to their everlasting doom.
As a pastor over a flock of God’s sheep, it is my God-given duty to be aware of the dangers that lie in wait for those within Christ’s church. It is statements like these made by the Michigan Episcopal leaders that can do great harm to an individual struggling with sexuality and gender identity. As Christians, we should never seek to appeal to the fallen culture, but always to the authority of God’s Holy Word.
Here is a link to the opinion article in the Record Eagle: "Its time to make amends"
Pastor Justin Myers is an avid student of God's Holy Word and received his M.Div. in biblical studies from Liberty University School of Divinity. Pastor Justin considers himself a family man who loves his wife and children dearly. He has been married for over nine years and has four children.