Friday, April 05, 2002

I have to say that I'm not sure I understand all the vitriol directed at homosexuals. Yes, I think sleeping with someone of your own sex is a sin. It's condemned not only in the Old Testament (Leviticus 20:13), but in the New Testament (I Corinthians 6:9) as well. However, we're to hate the sin but love the sinner. Many people say that being a homosexual automatically Dooms You To Hell. This is flawed in two fundamental ways. Firstly, the issue isn't what urges you have, but whether you act on them. This also works the other way, with the question not being on whether you want to do good works for others, but whether you actually try. A non-practicing homosexual would not be condemned. Furthermore, a former practicing homosexual would also be saved. Secondly, while sin does damn you, we should look at the rest of Paul's litany of grievous sins in I Corinthians 6:9-10. We find that in addition to homosexuals, the condemned include fornicators, idolators, adulterers, the effeminate, thieves, covetous, drunkards, revilers, and swindlers. Did you have sex before marriage? Damned. Sex with someone not your wife? Damned. Been excessively devoted to something other than God or the needs of your neighbors? Damned. Stolen (that includes restaurant silverware)? Damned. Wanted something that belonged to someone else, at the cost of their no longer possessing it? Damned. Gotten drunk? Damned. Insulted someone? Damned. Cheated on a test or tax form? Damned. If you haven't done any of these, then you probably have a visible halo and are being hailed as...well, the Messiah. We're all guilty, and thus all damned (I should be getting pretty high on Google for "damned," shouldn't I?). That's why the benefit of Grace is so wondrous, and also why we're told not to judge others. In accusing others of breaking God's laws, we merely reveal ourselves as hypocrites. By judging others, we actually condemn ourselves. However, by accepting that a person is a sinner and helping them try to break themselves of their sin (whatever it may be), we not only help them but we help ourselves. By loving others, we are loved in return.

UPDATE: For more on this, you might try my Theological Foray #3.

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