Does God Hate Gay People?

I just couldn’t bring myself to use the derogatory term that people use. I wanted to just to drive views up. But, I figured this would be explosive enough without any other provocation. I have seen and read a lot about this topic with New York approving gay marriage. The first ceremonies were today. I cannot believe some of the comments that I’ve been reading and just wanted to offer my thoughts on it.

I have been reading a book called “UnChristian”. In it the book states that one of the terms associated with me and you when we say we are Christians is “anti-homosexual”. It is a topic that many people have made the center of their faith. Some Churches have made it a doctrinal statement. There are very few current issues that are more divisive inside and outside the Church. As a matter of fact this is one of the few areas where Christians and non-Christians agree on no matter which side you stand.

I’ve really spent a lot of time praying about how to approach this because I have a little bit of a split personality about the issue. I am conservative politically and believe the government should have very little to do with regulating our personal lives- including who we live with and what happens in our bedrooms.

However, I am also conservative theologically and approach the Bible and faith from this perspective. But, I also understand that there is a long history of dealing with homosexuality in the Church. This is not an issue that has come up in the past 30 years and has caught church leaders off guard. There is an actual precedence for addressing this issue as there are for most issues. We just tend to pick one that fits our particular perspective and say it’s the Church’s historical view.

While I was a senior in college I took a Christian ethics class. I went to a conservative Christian college where we all pretty much had the same views on social issues. Our professor had us pick a topic and examine it from various perspectives. As you can probably figure by now I chose the topic of “homosexuality”. I got tired of hearing the bashing of people based on one aspect of their humanity. I’m still tired of it.

Sexuality is an important part of our lives. But, in our society we are actually identified by it! Talk about getting things out of whack. The sexual revolution maybe opened up conversations and allowed people to be more free in their thinking but the consequences have been anything but freedom. Freedom is usually the goal of a revolution. In this case it opened the door to broken relationships, broken spirits, broken bodies and broken families.

So, in my study of the Church’s response to homosexuality I just assumed that it would be a complete stand against it. I was actually surprised to see there were four views held by the Church throughout it’s history. These views were held by various groups but were all recognized as proper responses.

The first view most people are familiar with is that all homosexuality is a sin and is condemned in Scripture. This includes desires, thoughts and actions.  The Church did not separate the desire for homosexuality any differently than someone acting it out. They were all an abomination to God and rejected by the Church.

This view is held by many people still today. It is by far the least redemptive of the four views. It makes it nearly impossible for anyone with homosexual desires or thoughts to be open and accepted by a Christian community. Churches flatly deny people fellowship in their Church.

The second view held by the Church looks at the act of homosexuality as wrong but not the thoughts or desires. Just as a heterosexual person is not condemned for desiring a relationship with someone of the opposite sex so a homosexual would not be condemned for their desires.

People that hold this view would ask that the homosexual deny and ignore their desires. They should marry someone of the opposite sex and carry on a “normal” life if they must be with someone. There is a growing number of people who have decided they can no longer live this “lie” and must be true to their desires.

This view tends to be more gracious than the first view but can still be cruel. It’s basically a denial of the desires and feelings of an individual to be with whomever they choose. We all have desires that we should deny and would cause great destruction if we followed through with them. And, there are relationships that would be naturally destructive whether they are heterosexual or homosexual. But, should the Church regulate which relationships are “blessed” and which ones are not?

The third view begins to be a little more liberal towards homosexuality. It says that homosexual desires and thoughts are not wrong but that homosexuality is not God’s ideal for us. However, if it is your desire to be with someone of the same sex then you are to follow the same expectations as a heterosexual couple. Abstinence until marriage, lifetime commitment, mutual submission, and faithfulness.

Obviously, a homosexual would still not be satisfied with this view because it states that homosexuality is a “lesser” ideal. It paints them as second class to the superior heterosexual couples. Plus, until recently homosexuals could not legally marry. But, there are several gay couples who have been partners for their entire lives and have followed this expectation. They have been faithful, loving partners and have had happy lives.

The fourth view is the other popular view most people are familiar with and that states that homosexuality is natural and should be accepted without conditions. This is by far the most progressive view and most controversial. It’s the reason we are even having a discussion and why it’s so hotly debated.

This view demands equal rights for anyone who wants to get married. They want to be allowed the same privileges as any other couple- including financial benefits. They do not want to be seen as “equal but separate”.

Now that we’ve covered these four views you’ve probably found yourself in one of them. Or, maybe you never knew there was more than two views held by the Church. This is not a black and white issue. There are many ways to address this and they have all been endorsed throughout the history of the Church.

I want to address one final issue though- no matter where you stand on the issue we are called to be people of redemption. The old line “God hates the sin but loves the sinner” sounds OK on paper. The problem is that we are no where near to being God. We cannot differentiate between the two and often default to hating people.

The question is- even if you believed in your heart of hearts that homosexuality is an abomination- would you treat someone who is grossly overweight with the same venom you would a homosexual? Would you call them names? Would you hold up signs in front of the fast food restaurants saying “God hates fatso’s”? Or, would you shun someone in your church that doesn’t tithe? There’s more in the Bible about how we use our money than there is on homosexuality.

I have addressed before some of the issues that God hates that are never talked about in Church. Materialism, greed, pride, oppression and abuse of power to name a few. Yet, these are all ignored unless we were to offend someone influential and lose our precious resources.  I’ll stop there before I get too far off track!

Have you ever had someone not in a position of authority try and tell you what to do? They strut around with a power trip? Then the boss shows up and that person looks like a jerk. Well, that is how the Church is coming across in all of this. We claim to have “authority” and tell people this and that because we all love the need for power. But, one day when Jesus returns, there will be many who say” Lord, lord. Did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles? And He will tell them plainly “I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!” (Matthew 7:22-23)

I was with my teenager one night discussing Christian ethics. I was explaining all of this to him and saying that my view on the issue is not the only one. We were walking outside the restaurant when someone randomly yelled out “God hates fags”. I looked at my teenager and was like “did that just happen?” Thankfully we were able to have a blunt discussion about it.

I told him that I have racist and bigotted attitudes. There are some days when I see a customers name and I shudder because I know how “those people” are. I am constantly repenting of these thoughts and attitudes. I told him that in the end what matters to me is not someones sexual identity but whether they profess Christ. If they profess Christ then they are my brother or sister. We all come before Him needing grace for different things. He transforms us into His image.

The Church needs to not get sidetracked on every social issue of the day. I understand the Biblical story of Sodom and Gomorrah. But, the sins our Nation commits with trillions of dollars would make homosexuality look like someone said “darnit’ in comparison. The point being- there are bigger, more serious issues at stake here. Whatever your stance is you need to remember that we are all in need of redemption.

There is always some “sin” that needs to be addressed. Our kids will have a different issue and they are learning how to address our culture through our example. But, we need to remember that our battle is not against flesh and blood. Jesus said that He did not come to condemn the world but to save it. He laid his life down for us when we were his enemies. He understood our brokenness and the only way for us to be healed was through His sacrifice. His death brought us life!

We have a message of good news. How do we address social issues and still be affective as “salt and light”? We walk humbly with God. We allow Him to guide us in our thought, word and actions. We have the mind of Christ and we submit every thought to him.

My prayer is that we would explore this topic in a spirit of humility. Because remember God opposes the proud. The discussion is open…

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About freedomunearthed

This is a forum for everyone to come clean-to be who they really are without fear of shame or judgement. This is a safe place for a community of people to share their real life struggles, fears, pain or questions. This is a mix of people's stories, addressing real issue in real ways and some inspirational writings. This is a Christian based blog that welcomes everyone to join and share in the conversation.
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9 Responses to Does God Hate Gay People?

  1. Wow-you know where I stand and I sm super proud of you for being brave enough to discuss thid topic. It literally breaks my heart that there are believers in churches all throughout America struggling with their sexual identity but b/c of fear are unable to discuss this with fellow Christians. The shame and guilt are overwhelming and some even commit suicide. I truly believe homosexual people are the most oppressed group by the church since slavery. I would love for this blog to be a place where people struggling with things just like this could openly or anonymously share these things and receive biblical truth and encouragement. I would say a forum for people to freely express their true thoughts and shortcomings is one of the biggest, ignored needs of the Church today. So kudos to you!
    Ps I learned in BSF that unlike popular opinion Sodom’s greatest sin actually wasnt the sexual misdeeds but oppression of the poor….

  2. Great article Brian. I think the main thing too, is that most people calling themselves Christians don’t even know any gay people… so for me, it’s kind of weird for them to condemn someone they don’t even know. And, being a “topical” or “issue” driven Christian is a far cry from what God calls us to be I think… I finished a 5 mile race (running) once, and downtown Louisville there was an “anti-abortion” rally going on… they were all up in every one of the runners’ faces screaming: “God hates abortion! Do you seeeee this picture of this unborn child!???!” I told one of these peeps to knock it off because I’m sweating to death, can barely breathe and do I really LOOK like I’m going to run in and get an abortion? Really? Do any of the people? And if so, you are nuts.

    We need to really think about how we react to others’ sins… but really, we need to learn how to act and react to our own sin before calling out the dirt in others’ eyes. I have a handful of friends that are gay, have had abortions, have drank more than they should, have started cheating on their spouses, have anger issues, have talked poorly about Christ even though they believe in Him, have judged others, have….. and I love them just as much as I love my Christian friends that struggle with things that we may never talk about. Great conversations to be had, Brian! Thanks for reminding us to hold fast, love God, die to our own sins and to remember Whose we are. Happy day!

  3. Lindsay Doyal says:

    My opinion on this has been the same for as long as I can remember. There is only One Judge, and it is not me. I am told to be a witness for Him and a Servant to Him. Nowhere does it say in the Bible that it is my “job” to judge others, no matter what the “sin” is that the other person has done. I am raising my children to have the same outlook on others. As you stated about fat people, Gluttony is one of the 7 deadly sins, but the overweight are not condemned near as harshly as the homosexuals. There are so many other pressing issues facing our nation that (in my opinion) are so much more important than who’s dating who. Again, it is stated in the Bible that we as Christians are not to Judge each other, that it is His job. Matthew 7:1 “Do not judge, or you too will be judged.”

    Over my 34 years, I have learned to just accept people for who they are and leave the judging to God. I still do struggle with the acceptance thing as I am not perfect and still have faults, but I try hard to just accept the person for who they are, not their size, who they choose to date, etc.

    Thanks for posting this Brian! Have a great day!

  4. Thanks Lindsay and Melissa for reading and leaving comments! This is going to be the first of a few tough subjects laid out to discuss. I really appreciate both of your hearts with this subject and enjoyed reading what you had to say! Keep reading and commenting.

    Thanks, Brian

  5. Brian, well spoken and for what it’s worth. I grew up in a time when things like this “weren’t talked about” or “evil people” and was never really given any reason… oh or the dreaded.. “because I said so!” (that would be from my elders, aka parents, pastors, etc) But as I got older I began to search more on my own and I did the “hate the sin, love the sinner” thing. But I realize that the “in His image” isn’t literal or we would all look alike, act alike and be perfect and although I like to think I am pretty darn near perfect (not) we are all different. There are so many things in the bible that seem to be misunderstood or interpreted differently by just about any religious group that it seemed a trivial thing to me that someone would actually fall in love with “gasp” same sex! We can’t all be models, athletes, or billionaires (of which I am none) but we can accept those skinny little bodies, over paid football players and Bill Gates for being who they are. Maybe a few generations need to pass on before we can finally accept people for themselves and not for what they aren’t. But it has been a couple thousand years, so who knows for sure how many generations it will take. As for me, I have changed my personal views and accept people for what they are, genuine. No one needs to wear a sign that says “I’m gay”, “I’m fat”, “I’m white” or “I’m a redneck”, let me find out on my own. “People miss out on a lot of friendships because their preconceived prejudices don’t accept what their eyes see.”
    And by the way, I don’t think God hates gays, He loves them just like all His children.

  6. Preston says:

    AN honest, civil discourse wrapped in a spirit of meekness and humility would help in this area. What you have written so far is fine, yet, I think something important has been overlooked. I hope to submit another thought and you determine if you want to include it as you develop more thoughts.
    I have had the privledge of being friends with a number of gay individuals and have had great conversations regarding this subject. My wife used to practice a gay relationship just after high school. So, i do not enter this conversation carelessly.
    “Does God hate gay people?” No, Christ died for sinners. However, all of those who do not repent and believe upon Christ will know the just hadred (wrath) of God based upon John 3:36 and a number of other passages regardless of one’s morality.
    “Does God love ‘them’ just like all His Children?” This statement is a Biblical absurdity. For not “all” are sons and daughters of God. If they were, then what’s the point of the Bible or any objective truth? Universalism is the latest flavor among many professed evangelicalism (beware). In light of Hebrews 12:3-11 and other clear words of Scripture, not everyone belongs to God in a saving way. If homosexuality was approved by God then God would have commanded it. And if He commanded it then the observance of such a lifesyle would be an act of worship and pleasing to God. What does the Scriptures say? May we consider God as Creator and not lean on our own understanding?
    I acknowledge that there is a major problem in how the “Church” treats this subject. Men like John Hagee and the fundamentalist of his stripe certainly leave a bad example and miss the point of John 3:17 and other passages of charity. Much of the Christian populous does not understanding the world is already under condemnation. I wish the “church” took such measures to stand against divorce, adultery, gossipers, liars, thieves, greed, drunkards, and other noted unrighteousness (cf. 1 Cor. 6:9-11; 1 Tim. 1:8-11). Judgement is for the house of God and those who claim his grace and adoption (not the world). I wish someone had stood against my own father when I was 10 years old. Would it had made a difference?
    But God is Sovereign – justice and ‘making all things right’ belongs to Him alone. Christians must at least agree that our body does not belong to us to do whatever we want to do (regardless of our desires). The power of grace has come in order to free the sinner to do what God has commanded us to do (see Titus 2:11-14 – the “all” in this passage does not mean “all inclusive, context does not allow it). Obedience to the revealed will (what God commands) is worship. This – we are created for. (1 Cor. 6:20 – in the context our of our sexuality, basically says that we do not decide what’s right and wrong in the matter of how we use our body. Just because we have a desire to do or live a certain way does not mean the desire is approved and pleasing to God. To say and do otherwise, is to give God the middle finger and say “You don’t tell me what to do!” That’s a problem.)
    If we profess Christ and say that we love Him and yet remain in a condition contrary to his will (no change) then what does that say about Christ and the power of his resurrection which we claim is alive and well in us? This, according to 1 John is a disgrace and a lie and we make God out to be a liar if His grace makes no difference.
    “Love the sinner and hate the sin.” – sounds poetic and virtuous but does not appear in Scripture and does not square well with Psalm 5 and the whole counsel of God. We must bring our thoughts and opinions under the authority of Scripture in all matters (2 Cor. 10:5).

  7. Hey Preston, great post and very challenging – thanks for reminding us all to be continually in the Word – Does anyone know where the quote came from “Love the sinner and hate the sin…”? Just wondering.

  8. Shawn says:

    Great post Brian. While many who profess Christ are cruel and ignorant of the parts of the bible related to loving your neighbor and having peaceable relationships as much as we are able, we do not help those who struggle with any particular sin by pretending bible doesn’t speak clearly on the subject. Regardless of how many stands are taken by various religious groups, all that matters is what the bible says.
    However, how we as Christians approach most sin is out of line with scripture.
    If my brother struggles with any sin; be it sexual sin, greed, pride, oppression, dishonesty, or any other I must both lovingly challenge and encourage as I would expect him to do with me.

  9. Rose Kennedy says:

    I believe it is really great for all of these opinions to come out, both negative and positive. As for me, I have grown up being very judgmental and believe me, it is the most difficult to break and I strive constantly to think of the person as an innocent baby born with no knowledge of anything and what has happened in that life to create the person that baby became. In somethings, only prayer can make the difference, I believe. I strive to live my life according to what I believe and never sorry that I am a Christian Catholic and have lived that way. I am a sinner and live with he constant reminder that I cannot save myself, only by the blood of Jesus Christ am I saved. I know many good people who follow different lifestyles, by good, I mean relating to one another. While I pray for them on the one hand, I fear for them on the other. Am I judging? God help me if I am. I fear for them because I have studied the scriptures and believe in the lifestyle that should be lived accordingly, not by what I believe, but by what has been written by other believers. I do not believe in being unkind to people who do not believe as I do or live a different lifestyle as the part of the first Christian teaching is to “love one another as He as loved us” and “judge not least we be judged.” I know life is not all that simple, but the best I can explain at this particular time.

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