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Friday, March 9, 2012

Reaching Homosexuals with Christ: Two Problems

I'm adopted.

In being adopted into a family whose race is different than my own, I have had some very unique experiences and challenges that only those who have also been in interracially adopted, in similar circumstances can understand.

In the same way, I have no doubt that there are certain things about you and your life that only those who've had similar experiences can understand and relate too.

When friends or family who have not been through what we have try to commiserate with us or give us advice concerning our experiences, they may mean well, but they ultimately fall short because of an empathy gap.

However, when we receive comfort or counsel from a godly man or woman who has been in our shoes it makes such a difference and serves as a great encouragement.

Switch gears to the issue of non-believers with same-sex attraction (SSA) .

Can you see, given my example, how a person with SSA would rebuff someone who tries to give them godly exhortations because of a lack of common ground?

Any attempt at evangelism seems shallow and is viewed with suspicion because of a lack of common ground.

This "empathy gap" between Christians without SSA and non-Christians with SSA is the first problem.

The second problem is also the solution.

Sound confusing?

Let me explain:

I think it is painstakingly clear that the best avenue by which to reach homosexuals with the gospel message and explain to them a Christian outlook on sexuality is by Christians who themselves have SSA and are living out the Christian life, either in chastity or in committed heterosexual relationships, by the grace and power of God.

They understand the hurts and the trials that those with SSA face and the freedom and liberty that Christ can bring to those who are enslaved by the homosexual lifestyle.

This, I think, is not a novel idea.

The problem is that the local body of believers, young and old, especially in the more conservative sectors of Christendom, (of which I love and am a part) have not made the local Body a safe place to tell their stories and "come out" as Christians with SSA.

Strange, insensitive, and often incorrect ideas regarding the precise nature of Christians who have SSA have created an environment that many with SSA in our churches find hostile and unwelcoming.

You can see the problem: what non-believing persons with SSA need (like everyone else) is the gospel, and those who are the most qualified to bring it to them are afraid to come out in our churches for fear of being treated like freaks or looked down upon or even cast out of our ranks.

Earlier, I said that the problem is also the solution:

When our preachers, elders, deacons, and "laity" make a conscious decision that their local churches will be places where our brother and sisters with SSA can thrive, grow, and contribute in areas related and unrelated to their attractions we can begin the process of reaping the harvest of unconverted homosexuals in our communities AND giving hope to young Christians with SSA who feel hopeless and are confused about their feelings

Essentially, when the Church begins acting like the Church we will see people coming to Christ as a result.

I'm thinking of doing another blog post on how we can begin to effect a positive change in this area, but in the meantime search your own heart and see what you should be doing better in order to to reach out to those in your church who may be struggling with SSA.

27 comments:

  1. Agree times a hundred billion. I hope this is the prevailing theology for a LONG LONG time. We have a long ways to go, but what you're saying is spot-on. Keep it up!

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  2. Thanks for the encouragement, Drew!!

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  3. You compared your black issue with a gay issue. Did blacks not fight for their rights, as gays are now? You have a common ground with gays. They are fighting for their rights. The only basis you have for gays being a bad thing is the Bible. I suppose you read King James Version. You do know King James was gay, right? Documented proof of that and the only people to deny are non-gay Christians. The reason that the gay community will win (along with women's rights), is because once you bring faith into the conversation, i.e. God, Jesus, other Gods, souls, you leave a logical discussion. The burden of proof is on the person who is making the claim, not the other way around. Professors of mathematics, religious people, and engineers, think deductively. Scientists and the law think indeductively. Since there is no proof of a soul, heaven, hell, the devil, any Gods, ghosts, goblins, or unicorns our Free Country has to base our laws on facts, not beliefs. That is so you can worship your God and go to your church. The very freedom you obviously take for granted (as you are just a kid) would be compromised if America based it's laws on faith and beliefs, rather than facts. As you are obsessed with the gay community, I would suggest a good look in the mirror and see what the problem is. Curious, maybe? Hatred? Disgust? Immoral? How do you FEEL about gays? You feel sorry for them because you think they are going to hell? Now. Think about how many people in this country, in your town, who think those things about your black skin and use the bible as a good reason for it? Oh wait. You were born that way. Can't be helped. http://www.boston.com/news/globe/magazine/articles/2005/08/14/what_makes_people_gay/

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  4. Hey, Anonymous, thanks for stopping by. I sense a lot of anger in your comment and that saddens me. I won't respond to all of your points, but I will make a couple of comments:

    Firstly, my blog is a Christian one, and as a Christian, it is my desire to see all people come into a personal loving relationship with Jesus Christ their King. Stemming from that, I am also interested in how we can best reach those groups with the gospel message. Reaching those with SSA is an area where the church has had problems, hence my post.

    Secondly, we have many good reason to believe that God exists which serve to strengthen a believers faith! If you are interested in these reasons then I suggest that you look up Dr. William Lane Craig and his numerous "Does God Exist" debate on Youtube and Alvin Plantiga's"Two Dozen or So Arguments for God's existence." Their arguments and more serve to establish Christianity as a reasonable faith.

    Thirdly, as to your argument about the nature of homosexuality, I would be willing to concede that biology may indeed play a modest role in SSA, however, so do many social factors, so it is not wholly correct to say that homosexuals are born the way they are. To be honest it actually does not matter. A couple years ago a study was done that showed that some people are biologically predisposed to violence. In addition, we already know that the child of drug abuser or alcoholic is biologically predisposed to substance abuse. This does not make violence, drug abuse, or drunkenness morally permissible, however. In the same way, you could not say that acting on SSA is morally permissible, even if biology plays a role. Here is a very good article on this topic: http://www.firstthings.com/article/2012/01/same-sex-science

    Finally, I'm not sure why all of the venom in your comment, but I can assure God loves those with SSA and wants to be in communion with them. That of course is all that matters in the end.

    Thanks again!

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  5. A Caveat from Drew: the development of majority in the legal system becoming Legal Positivists is a relatively new thing. There has always been a pendulum between accepting some sort of law higher than human experience (moral law) and laws solely based on "facts." Your statement saying that we have to base our laws on facts, not beliefs is taking a very narrow view of history. Many movements throughout history have relied on higher moral law for their justification. This is called moral realism. Our founders called these unscientific, improvable beliefs "certain unalienable rights."

    It's something to think about.

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  6. Hi Eric,

    Thanks for the post! There are a few arguments you make here that I just can't quite wrap my mind around. I have a few questions and comments for you about this paragraph:

    "I think it is painstakingly clear that the best avenue by which to reach homosexuals with the gospel message and explain to them a Christian outlook on sexuality is by Christians who themselves have SSA and are living out the Christian life, either in chastity or in committed heterosexual relationships, by the grace and power of God."

    Firstly, assuming you consider homosexuality to be a sin and therefore wrong, why is it imperative that homosexuals change or find alternative ways to deal with their sexuality before they can be accepted by the church and by God? As Christians, correct me if you don't agree, but we believe that Jesus came to save us from our sins. We are all sinning. All the time. And we do accept our own sins. It is part of our nature. Sure, we repent a bit for this or that, but there are some sins that we are just so used to that we accept. We cut people some slack when they commit familiar sins because we understand what it's like to be in that position. We accept people who hate. We accept divorced men who remarry. We accept people who don't take care of their bodies. We accept people who get divorced. We accept judgement-- all of these sins we accept because we can comprehend them. We understand what it's like. But not homosexuality. That's just too immoral. Why? If we heterosexual Christians are allowed to live in and accept our own sin and are still worthy of the love of God the way we are, then why aren't homosexuals? Why do they have to be living out the Christian life in chastity or in a committed heterosexual relationship? Why can't they live out the Christian life in a committed homosexual relationship or however they want if other Christians are allowed to live in and accept their own sin?

    If the church didn't take any of the people who are accepting and living in their sin, it'd be like the nursery rhyme-- "here's the church, here's the steeple, open the doors, where's all the people??" Jesus Christ is the only person to ever walk this Earth who didn't accept and live in his own sin, and that's because he didn't have any to live in. Homosexuals are just fine the way they are. They sin, like all the rest of us. We judge them harshly because we don't understand, but that does not make their sin any worse than our own- any worse than the divorced man, the person who does not take care of their body, or the judgmental person. In God's eyes, we are all sinners and we are all equal.

    Jesus died for all of us because he loves all of us the way we are. No changes needed. I think it's important for the church to remember that and follow that example-- "Love one another as I have loved you." Those are big words. The church needs to welcome everyone, and love people as they live out the way they were created to be, and not judge people for loving who God has put in their hearts. Again, thanks for the post, Eric, and I hope to hear your thoughts about my comment. God bless!

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  7. Hey, Anonymous, first of all, thanks for your thoughts!

    I try to steer clear of saying that "homosexuality", which commonly refers to attraction towards a person of the same sex, is sinful, but instead that "homosexual activity" is sinful. I believe that this is a faithful interpretation of Scripture.

    That being said, I believe that a person with SSA does not need to try to "become straight" before coming to Christ, but instead repent of any homosexual activity.

    I believe this because the Bible makes clear that repentance from sin is a condition of salvation (Matthew 3:2, Mark 6:12, Acts 2:38, Luke 5:32 ; 13:5)
    .
    This is not a special case with homosexuals, but it is required that all men repent of all sin.

    I completely agree that the Church does approach this sin of homosexual activity with a kind of hypocrisy compared to other sin. For a Christian to spurn repentance in their life and become comfortable in their sin is sinful and should be rejected.

    I don't agree, however, that we sin all the time or that we can justify one sin by pointing to another. If every Christian was a hypocrite that still would not be an acceptable excuse to engage in sin ourselves.

    Acceptance is an interesting concept. I believe that the Bible calls Christians to unconditional love, but not unconditional acceptance.

    Also notice that I talked about the "grace and power of God". By and through the grace and power of God we can choose not live in and accept our sin and choose to walk in the light of God.

    In closing, I think that the main issue is the text of Scripture. Scripture teaches that homosexual activity is sinful and that God commands us to repent of sin and therefore homosexual activity should be repented of. People with SSA are loved of God just as they are, as are all people, but God loves us too much to let us stay that way and His holy nature cannot condone sin.

    Again, thanks for your comment and feel free to respond here or on my blog email, which can be found on my profile!

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    1. Hey Eric, thanks for the speedy and informative reply! :)

      I confess, I don't understand the difference between homosexuality and homosexual activity. We can sin in word, thought, and deed, and if we are to consider "homosexual activity" as a sin, then we are also to consider SSA as a sin. Just as lust is the word for adultery/fornication in thought, "SSA" is the word for homosexual activity in thought. They're both sins.

      About your "grace and power of God" comment, are you saying that you no longer sin because you have the grace and power of God? Why, then, do you need Jesus? If you still sin even though you have the grace and power of God, then how are you expecting a homosexual person not to sin anymore even when they have the grace and power of God?

      "That being said, I believe that a person with SSA does not need to try to "become straight" before coming to Christ, but instead repent of any homosexual activity." Did you repent of all your former sins before coming to Christ? And once you repented for those sins, did you never commit them again? "For a Christian to spurn repentance in their life and become comfortable in their sin is sinful and should be rejected. " You say this, but yet, if Christians actually did this, the church would be empty every Sunday. Everyone would be rejected. Are there no sins that you've become comfortable in? None?

      You're absolutely right, we can't justify one sin by pointing to another. If you notice, though, I wasn't trying to justify homosexuality but rather to say that since we are all equally imperfect and in need of Jesus, we should accept each other as we are and not make up requirements for the love of Jesus. You accept others who sin as they are. But homosexuals need to change? There are many sins the church accepts freely. We don't require each other to repent when we eat junk food and don't exercise-- that's just normal. But it is a sin too-- we are to treat our bodies as a holy temple. I don't think there are many Christians who'd throw their trash in a holy temple and watch it deteriorate, but yet SO many of us allow that to happen to our bodies and nobody makes a peep about repentance. I've never seen anyone make a hubbub about how it's so wrong for a divorced people to remarry (Luke 16:18)-- no, they're just excited for a wedding between two people who are in love. But homosexual relationships-- same-sex marriage? No way.

      I am a very sinful person, Eric. I am the first to admit that. In fact, I am so sinful that if I were not living my sin, I'm not sure there'd be much of me left. Sin is just woven into my being. No matter how much I try, I just keep getting tangled up in it. Maybe you don't sin all the time, but I do. When I open my mouth, I'm really lucky if I'm not being prideful, vengeful, gossipping, or committing any number of other sins. When I think, I notice how often there is hate and judgement in my heart. In my deeds, I try, but I screw up all the time.

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    2. (continued)

      There's no way I'm even halfway perfect enough to say to a homosexual person that they can join me in communion with Christ but only if they get rid of their sins first. If I believe that I have to get rid of/repent for all my sins before I can commune with Jesus, I'm in deep trouble. My sins ain't goin' nowhere nohow any time soon and I'd be stuck in an endless litany of confession if I tried to repent for all of them. If I just say, "I repent for all my sins." but then I go right out and sin again, which I inevitably will, have I really repented? Take an extreme example, say I killed someone and I repent for that but then I go right out again and kill someone else. Is that real repentance? Am I really sorry? Is there any realistic way I can truly repent for all my sins? No, because I'd get done "repenting" and go right back to sinning again, meaning I must not have been all that sorry for what I did. Does that mean I should give up on Jesus? Just give up and say, "gosh, sorry dude, I guess I just sinned too much to be able to talk to you." NO! Jesus came so we WOULDN'T have to do that. He's there for us even though we sin. Repentance may be required for salvation and if that's the case, I will probably be in trouble because I just can't repent enough. But repentance is NOT required for someone to come to Jesus. There's a difference.

      Perhaps you are less sinful than I am which is why I am having trouble understanding when you say that "a person with SSA does not need to try to "become straight" before coming to Christ, but instead repent of any homosexual activity. " That means that we all have to repent of every sin we've ever committed before we can commune with Jesus. Before we can come to Christ. Is that right? If it is, I definitely should not be a Christian because there's no way I'd be allowed to come to Christ if I followed those rules.

      I'm sorry if I am misunderstanding you, Eric-- I know I have done so in the past with others I've been in discussion with and if that is the case, please accept my apology in advance! Thank you for the great discussion, I appreciate people like you who can have a reasonable, calm, logical discussion. God bless!

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    3. Same-sex attraction or SSA, is used to describe sexual/physical attraction to a member of one's gender. I prefer to use this term over "homosexuality", because the word homosexuality has many nuances.

      SSA does not imply lust, because just as you may be attracted to a person of the opposite gender without lusting over that person, a person with SSA can be attracted to members of their own gender without necessarily lusting over them. Therefore, we should not consider SSA to be equal to lust or a sin. This is not to say SSA desirable, however.

      Moving on, in 1 Corinthians 10:13, the Bible tells us that God has provided a way out of our temptations so that we can "stand up under them". This verse is telling us that we can overcome sin and we are expected to, since God has made a way! So why do we need Jesus? Because it is only by His power that we have the victory over sin and it is only by His power that we can continue to have the victory over sin. This is true of any person, regardless of their attractions.

      You asked if I repented of all sin before coming to Christ. In short, yes. Repentance is a change of mind, a hatred of sin, that does not include a change of action, which is something different. If we equate repentance with the change that results from it, we have salvation by works and no one could one saved (which I think is what you're hinting at). Sadly, there are "pet" sins in my life, but I am constantly trying to root them out and remove them from my life.

      Your 4th paragraph is spot on in what you decry, but lacking in what you suggest as a remedy. Many churches have all sorts of sins that they "let slide" and others they preach against. The solution to this is to stop being hypocritical and preach against all sin. God forbid I try to put conditions on the love of God! However, God, in His Word, has put conditions on salvation.

      I think the crux of our misunderstanding is the meaning of the word repent. Repentance is not "getting rid of sin", but a turning away from sin, contriteness of heart, and hatred of sin that takes place in the mind. I whole-heartedly agree that if we have to get rid of every sin to be saved, I am no more saved than anyone out there! But the
      I have no doubt that we are in the same boat when it comes
      to sin. I know I sin every day!

      When I say "come to Christ" I mean "come to Christ for salvation" or "become a Christian". So in order to come to Christ we must hate our sin and have a firm desire and commitment to turn away from sin, which is the true meaning of repentance. In fact, the whole point of salvation, is salvation from sin, which implies we want to be saved from our sin and freed from its grip.

      I hope I answered some of your questions! Thanks again!

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    4. Hi Eric,

      Ok so, I'm STILL confused about the whole SSA vs. Homosexuality deal--I just don't understand how, if it is a sin to have homosexual actions, it is not also a sin to have homosexual thoughts. One is a sin in deed, the other is a sin in thought, right?

      1 Cor 10:13-- I think we have a major difference in interpretation about this verse... When I read this, I see the God that saved me when I was suicidal-- literally 30 seconds away from death. I see the God that gave me reason when I was in desperation and despair. Indeed, that despair wasn't beyond what I could bear with God's help. When I read this verse, I don't see a God that's expecting me to overcome all my sins - to be perfect. I see the God that provided me with Jesus so that I can be saved even though I sin. So that I can have a "way out" of Hell even though I sin.. I see a God that I want to obey because I love Him, not because he says if I don't obey Him I can't be saved.

      Suppose we do assume that this verse is telling us that we're expected to overcome our sins-- what is the "way out?" Isn't that Jesus? If we accept Jesus, he is the way out-- he's our savior. He's the way out of Hell. Being perfect and never sinning is not the way out of Hell. If us overcoming our sins and trying to never sin was the "way out" then Christianity would be a works-based faith. As it is a grace-based faith, I can't agree with you here that 1Cor 10:13 means that we are expected to overcome our own sins. It means that Jesus provides us with a way out of Hell through salvation *even though* we sin.

      I'm a bit confused how you can say that "repentance is not 'getting rid of sin'", and then say that "we can overcome sin and we are expected to." What do you mean by that?

      Also, you say that repentance is a hatred of sin... But if I say that I hate asparagus and then I'm tempted to go and eat asparagus, do I really hate it that much or was I lying when I said I hated it? If I say I hate sin but then I'm tempted to go and sin do I really hate sin? Can we truly repent for our sins even if repentance is just a hatred of sin? Do we ever truly repent?

      You say that people with SSA, if they wish to be Christians, must live either in chastity or in committed heterosexual relationships. You're saying that God expects homosexuals not to commit these sins in order for salvation, and that God expects us not to sin-- to overcome our sins. And if, in order to be saved, we need to truly repent-- to hate our sin (to stop sinning) we've now turned Christianity into a works-based faith because our salvation is based on whether or not we sin and repent. A grace-based faith operates on the premise that we love our God with all our heart, soul, and might such that we follow Him because we WANT TO, not because he's going to smite us into Hell if we don't. Human love is not a perfect thing-- we're fallen creatures, and because God understands this, he gave us Jesus for our salvation.

      This said, God would accept a homosexual person who had lived their life in sin because God would accept anyone who had lived their life in sin. Does my viewpoint make more sense now? We'll still be saved as long as we try to follow Jesus' two simple, but hard to follow requests-- to love God with all our heart, soul and strength, and to love our neighbors as ourselves. Whether or not a person loves God is not for us to judge, we can't say to a homosexual person that because they are sinning that they must not love God enough to stop sinning. We can't say that because its as true for all of us as it is for them. We can't stop sinning, neither can they. I hope this makes more sense to you, Eric, and thank you again for the discussion! God bless.

      Anon 2

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    5. I'll try to be more clear:

      The Bible says that sexual relations between persons of the same gender is sinful.

      Sexual attraction (not lust) of one person to another person of the same gender is not considered sinful, as recorded in the Bible.

      This is not a matter of "SSA vs Homosexuality", but a matter of having non-lustful attractions versus acting on those attractions. It is not a sin, in thought or otherwise, to be attracted to one's own gender.

      I think you've misunderstood me with respect to the Corinthians passage. You would agree, I'm sure , that God does not want you to sin. The passage I mentioned says that God has provided a way out of our temptations, so that we need not sin. Therefore it follows that God expects us to take the "way out" and not sin. Remember Matthew 5:48 say:"Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect". This does NOT have to do with salvation or repentance, however.

      I absolutely agree that God has provided us a way out of hell, despite the presence of sin in our lives and that we should obey God out of love, above all else.

      Your interpretation of the Corinthians passage is skewed because it ignores what God has provided a way out of, namely, temptation. Of course Jesus is the way out of hell, but that is not what this verse is talking about. This verse is saying that God has provided a way out of our temptations, so that we need not sin. I agree that moral perfection is NOT a condition for salvation.

      Repentance is about turning away from sin, while pursuing holiness (obedience) is about ridding ourselves from sin.

      You ask, "if I say that I hate asparagus and then I'm tempted to go and eat asparagus, do I really hate it that much or was I lying when I said I hated it?" Maybe not, maybe yes. It depends on the person. I will say that it is possible to be enticed (tempted) to sin despite repenting. Also, we know that repentance is possible because God expects us to repent!

      I think you're mixing up my words. I believe that a person with SSA is required to be chaste, just like ALL other unmarried persons, including myself. Yes, God expects them and us to repent of sin as a condition for salvation, but this is not good-works-based salvation, because repentance is a change of MIND, separate from the resulting lifestyle-change.

      I understand you're view, I just don't agree with it :). That being said I've enjoyed our discussion. I'm working on a couple blog posts currently, perhaps I'll do one on repentance afterwards.

      Thanks again, Anon 2!

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  8. I want to bring to attention a point Anonymous made above, HOMOSEXUALS ARE BORN DIFFERENT. They can not and will not, change. Just like you were born different than me, we both have different favorite colors, different eye colors, we are different heights, and we have different favorite foods (unless you love sushi as much as I do...) can you change these aspects?

    If, for instance, being 6'2" suddenly became a sin, what could I do about it? I could, of course, cut off the bottom of my feet and the skin off the top of my head, would that fix the problem? Would people love me more if I did that? Would I have a contamination called Too Tall Disorder (TTD)? What do you suggest? Would you judge me for being too tall? HOMOSEXUALS ARE BORN LIKE THIS! How do I know? I have friends who are homosexuals, they are very kind people, maybe they sin, I don't care, they are some of the nicest people I have ever come across. I don't care that they are different. They are my friends, do I judge them? Sure, I do, I sin all the time. I don't say I like it, I wish with all my heart that I didn't sin, but unfortunately I am imperfect.

    Don't judge people, love them. So maybe the guy down the street robbed a bank, but he's really funny and is a great cook. Love him for that, don't reject him because of earlier sins, love him for what he does right.

    I never really saw the problem with homosexuals. Jesus said clearly "Above all, love." In my opinion, you only need to follow those three words to be an outstanding Christian. Possibly the concept of one man falling in love with another man is disturbing to you. Is love disturbing now? Love, in any form, will always be good. Because love is the essence of good. Without love, where are we? That is a place called Hell. Not a very nice place at all.

    Life is too short to worry about others' sins. Sure he's gay, Jesus loves him. I promise you that Jesus loves him. If you can't love a homosexual because his sexuality disturbs you, then in the words of a great conservative Christian, "PUT A HELMET ON!"

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    1. Anonymous, there is no scientific evidence that having SSA is akin to having blue eyes or being tall or having red hair. Their is modest evidence to suggest that these desires are hormonal, but much research has been done that suggests environmental factors play an integral in the appearance of SSA in a person.

      Your comment, " [what] If, for instance, being 6'2" suddenly became a sin", betrays a misunderstanding of the nature of sin. Sin comes as a result of temptation (James 1:15) and it is fully within our control to reject temptation.

      Also, I disagree with your characterization of love. You seem to equate love with a kind of "live and let live" tolerance. I see love as wanting the best for a person and working towards a person best. That being said, I believe it is loving to tell a person that their sin (whatever is may be) is dangerous and should be rejected.

      If someone murdered your family and friends, I doubt you would care if they were funny or had nice qualities. The issue isn't being nice, but being holy, and holiness precludes having sex with person of your own gender (1 Corinthians 6:8-11)

      Thanks for stopping by!

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    2. I would like to ask you 1 question, have you ever known, met or spoken a homosexual? I have done each one of these with one of my friends, including speaking to them about their sexuality. His words were "There are a lot of studies out there trying to find out why we are different. They don't quite explain it." If you ask a homosexual, there is a good chance he or she will respond by saying that it is exactly the same reason that you are straight. Please, all this "evidence from studies" is annoying me. There is no substitute to speaking to a homosexual. If you have never spoken to one, please refrain from mentioning SSA or things such as that until you do. Thank you.

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    3. To answer your question: yes.

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    4. Great! What did he or she say? Do not give me names or anything, I just want to know what they said and what their stand on this discussion would be.

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    5. The responses are varied, but most agree with me. I have talked to many Christians who have SSA, so we tend to see eye to eye on this issue.

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    6. Do you know what their words were? Are they Christians? Did they say that they could chose if they wanted to, to become straight?

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    7. One person, a guy, said that he felt like he could get to a point where he could enter into a heterosexual relationship (he really wants kids and a wife!!). But even if not, he is committed to celibacy, since above all he wants to serve God.

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    8. And the others?

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  9. If there was any evidence of anger, please note that I love you, regardless of what you have ever done to me. Thank you. I did not mean any offense to any one.

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    1. Don't worry about it. This is a hot topic that hits very close to the heart.

      Thanks!

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  10. Hi Eric,
    Another anonymous here. From the words in your post I can tell that you have a beautiful heart and desire everyone to commune with God. This is something I very much respect.

    I would like to ask you, though, what you feel about opposite sex attraction. For instance, have you, yourself, ever struggled with lust for someone of the opposite sex? I am aware of quite a few very devout Christians who even struggle with pornography addictions. They say they are not addicted but come back to it over and over again.

    If you have struggled with lust yourself, it's possible that you repented for your sin. But did that stop you from having lust sneak into your heart again? Did repenting stop you from committing that sin another time?

    Do you think people who continuously live a life of lust, as the bible points out is sin, can be Christian? Will people who continue to live in their sin, despite repenting every day, go to heaven?

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    1. Thank you for the compliment!

      I believe that attraction to the opposite sex is healthy and intentional. Lust, however, is a perversion of that God-ordained order.

      To answer your questions: I have struggled with lust in my own life, and I have repented. Repentance is not meant to keep a person from sinning, pursuing holiness through obedience to God's law is. That is how I overcome lust and any other sins.

      You asked, "Do you think people who continuously live a life of lust, as the bible points out is sin, can be Christian", to which I answer, not for long. Eventually, if obedience does not follow repentance, we will stop repenting altogether and choose to live apart from Christ, which is equal to apostasy.

      Thanks for your comment and questions!

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  11. Dear Eric, yet another anonymous here, I am just wondering, have you yourself ever struggled with SSA? And if so, were you able to put your ideas into practice?

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    1. Hey Anonymous,

      Because of the nature of the Internet and such I don't feel comfortable answering those kind of questions. You can shoot me an e-mail if you so wish, however.

      Thanks!

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