Current Events & Trends: Christians shifting on illicit lifestyles

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Christians shifting on illicit lifestyles

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Biblical laws that have held sway for millennia have been carelessly cast aside by people who think they know better than God. This overall movement has even started to spread to nominal Christianity.

Christian ministries previously devoted to helping homosexuals to abandon their lifestyles are giving up the fight. For instance, Exodus International has closed its doors after nearly 40 years and even half-apologized for its previous efforts. A few even appear to misrepresent biblical teaching on the matter.

A USA Today column points out that Christian opposition to homosexual lifestyles "has based its position on an authoritative text that has not undergone any revisions of late—the Bible, aka the word of God" ("Some Christians Shift on Gays," July 17, 2013). But it then argues that following the Bible's message of tolerance and acceptance rather than denouncing sinful behavior should be the way forward.

Of course, we must have love and kindness toward all people. But part of love is informing people they need to repent of sin!

Because God does not change (Malachi 3:6; James 1:17; Hebrews 13:8), neither does His Word. Nor does it allow exalting principles of living peaceably and kindly do away with people's need to stop disobeying God and start obeying Him—or with His Church's need to proclaim that to everyone. God says of those who give in to such thinking, "You have strengthened the hands of the wicked, so that he does not turn from his wicked way" (Ezekiel 13:22).

The law God gave through Moses explicitly condemned homosexual behavior. And Jesus Christ did not come to abrogate God's law (Matthew 5:17; Luke 16:17). Moreover, He commanded people to repent of disobedience and told His followers to continue this call to repentance—though striving with God's help to make progress in reforming themselves first. The apostle Paul upheld the biblical teaching on homosexual behavior in three different New Testament books.

Of course, approaching others in this regard should be as kind as possible. But the mere suggestion that others are doing wrong is often taken by them as judgmental, mean-spirited or even hateful. Furthermore, it's often necessary to give a serious warning to shake people enough to even care. That is what God does in the Bible—though His mercy is vast.

A major themes of Psalm 103 is God's merciful forgiveness (Psalm 103:3-4, Psalm 103:8-14). That is one reason Jesus Christ died for our sins, making forgiveness and reconciliation to the Father possible. If God's intent was to abrogate His law and by fiat cast it aside, then Jesus Christ would not have needed to die!

Christians who obey God's laws are facing a time of great trial and persecution. Nonetheless, God says that Jesus Christ will rescue His own by bringing a new world of unparalleled peace. But in the meantime, we have to both contend for and hold fast to the original faith once delivered to the saints (Jude 3-4). This is what God requires! (Source: USA Today.)