Homosexual Sacrifice: A Word to the Church
“Homosexuality is a vile and wicked thing.”
“I just cannot comprehend that grossness.”
“Why do they do that?”
“Well maybe AIDS will wipe those perverts out.”
“How sick can you get; it makes my skins crawl.”
“Those queers have no regard; they have contaminated this nation's blood supply. They should be put into prisons or put on an island and die.”
“I don't have any problem with gays in the military, I think they should let them all in, go start a war, and then put them on the front lines.”
“God will not stand for this at all. God will punish this filthy sin of perversion. I hope God wipes them all out. You do know that they are all damned to hell, don't you?”
“They want me to let them in my schools to teach my children. They want full legal rights as a family. They want to be the pastor of my church. No way will those filthy, vile, perverted degenerates ever come into my home or my church. I'm telling you, the judgment of God is going to come on them like Sodom and Gomorrah.”
As I share with people about the ministry of First Stone, these quotes are the repeated ritual I have heard so many times over the last 10 years. Certainly, there is some truth reflected as we are told from the Scriptures in Leviticus 18:22, “You shall not lie with a male as with a woman. It is an abomination. ” However, it is this type of rhetoric that actually helps to empower the political gay movement. It also gives them political leverage with legislative authorities. I can understand their fears, but unfortunately these kinds of mean-spirited comments from church people actually kill and destroy. Many times when they are finished with their verbal rituals and comments, I feel like I have been to a sacrifice and many of the people that First Stone works with have been disemboweled right there on the altar. We do not kill animals today as the old sacrificial way, but we kill people with our tongues as we pose as righteous priest of God. We are performing sacrifice without even knowing what we're doing, Jesus said, “Father forgive them for they do not know what they do.” Luke 23:34.
One thing I have noticed is that there is a universal phenomenon among the religions of the world. There is scarcely any religion known, which does not carry with it a sacrificial ritual. Webster's dictionary defines sacrifice: to offer a sacrifice, to suffer loss of, give up, renounce, injure, or destroy for an ideal, belief, or end. The nature of man with or without God is religious. There is a common denominator between religion and sacrifice. It is a material obligation that is made to a deity by means of a concentration in consumption of the thing offered. In Leviticus chapter 4 we are given instructions concerning the sin offering. I find truth expressed in the symbolism of sacrifice, although we do not practice blood sacrifice today. We have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Christ Jesus once and for all. Hebrews 10:10.
Even as the righteous priests of God we still must be watchful not to act in response to the old nature, being the manifestation of the old religious nature of man. Man's religiosity contains the idea of sacrifice. When we hear the word homosexuality or sexual perversion we have a tendency to react more ferociously in disgust than we do with other sins. We immediately begin to pronounce the ritual of sacrifice: “Homosexuality is a vile and wicked thing! I just cannot comprehend that yuck grossness…“ So then, we reduce ourselves to the level of a pagan when we say these things. Yes, there is truth in it, but are we missing the point of why Christ died when we carry this inside our hearts? “When Jesus heard that, He said to them, ‘Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. But go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy and not sacrifice.’ For I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance.” Matt 9:12-13 Jesus was quoting from Hosea 6:6. He was revealing the heart of God toward the sinner and wants our heart to operate out of mercy and not sacrifice. In Hosea 6:6 we read, “For I desire mercy and not sacrifice, and the knowledge of God more than burnt offerings.”
What is God's will when it comes to a homosexual person? Do we have an obligation or a responsibility? Just what exactly does God require of us on this subject? In search of the answers of these questions two Scriptures came to my attention that I believe reveal the heart of God and tells us what God requires. In Micah 6:8 we read, “He has shown you, O man, what is good; and what does the LORD require of you but to do justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God?” The second verse is Deuteronomy 10:12, “And now, Israel, what does the LORD your God require of you, but to fear the LORD your God, to walk in all His ways and to love Him, to serve the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul.” We are to do justly, love mercy, walk in all His ways, and to love one another with all our hearts and soul. God shows us in Micah 6: 8 that we are in relationship with God AND man.
When Jesus was asked what the greatest commandment was, He answered quoting from Deuteronomy, Matt 22:37-40 reads as follows, Jesus replied: "'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.' This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.' All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments." Did you notice that Jesus tied a second commandment onto the quote from Deuteronomy? A commandment that is like the first, to love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. He says to love our neighbor as ourselves. Perhaps when our mouths speak critical judgments of others it is revealing our hearts that we maybe failing in these two great commandments. Notice the wording “love your neighbor as yourself,” but remember this commandment is like the first commandment. Consider this question do you love yourself, as God wants you to? I want to challenge you that if you do not love yourself with all your heart and with all your soul and with your mind you may be experiencing difficulty in your relationships. Do you love your neighbor with all of your heart, with all of your soul and with all your mind?
We are in relationship with God and man. A relationship with man to do justly and to love mercy, that means to show mercy to others as we walk humbly with our God. I was once interviewed on the radio about First Stone Ministries. A report came back to me saying, that I said, we were to embrace practicing homosexuals with open arms into our churches, and also let them have their own views. This could not be further from the truth. To illustrate my point, I was asked to speak at a church on homosexuality. I took some people along with me to share their testimonies on how they had come OUT of homosexuality. After the service a man came up and said, “I am so glad that you came, until now I thought the homosexual was like the ones I see on television protesting.” He said, “these are real people, whose testimonies about Jesus has given me new insights into the person who struggles with homosexuality, thank you for coming.” That was one of the kindest things that anyone has ever said about ministering in this area. Obviously, he loved mercy and walked with God. He loved the person yet rejected the sin. This man was able to recognize that others were in need of the Great Physician. Mark 2:17: “When Jesus heard it, he said unto them, They that are whole have no need of the physician, but they that are sick: I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.”
There are two kinds of righteous people: one being self-righteous and the other made righteous by faith through Jesus Christ. Even though you may not have come out of the sin of homosexuality the truth is you still have come out of sin, or you need to come out of sin. I have a friend who in his younger day worked and lived as a drag queen. The Lord saved him and brought him out of that lifestyle; today he now pastors a church. Someone came up to him and said do you allow homosexuals in your church? My friend answered, “We sure do, but we make them sit in a special place.” “Oh really,” said the man, “Where's that?” “We make them sit right over there where the liars, adulterers, fornicators, swindlers, drunkards, and the swearing sit.” His point was that we all have sin and had been saved from a terrible pit by our Lord Jesus Christ. The righteousness of Jesus by the washing of His blood has been given to us as believers in Him. How can we who are ritually sacrificing those already in bondage, become righteous priests? In Romans 3:23-26 we read, “All have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God; To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus.”
Yes, Jesus’ blood justifies you because of your faith in what He did on Calvary. What then is your obligation to the person that struggles with homosexuality? It is to show them Jesus in you, love the person, share the gospel, and lead them to salvation. Bestow mercy on them, the people for whom Christ died.
Remember after initial salvation, there is a growth process where a person must grow up into maturity in Christ. Overnight deliverance from homosexuality tends to be a very rare thing. For most people deliverance from homosexuality and sexual addiction is a process. A process which requires love, acceptance of the person, mercy, and the instruction of the word of God. Offer your self as a friend, a brother, or a father who can let the life of Jesus be expressed to the person that has struggled with homosexuality.
Homosexuality is really more about relational bankruptcy than it is about sexual matters. I believe that the word homosexual is the wrong word. It should be called “father hunger.” I have found this to be true in the majority of people that I have discipled. This is a healing process for a person who struggles. They desire to be known, to be loved in a godly way by people who have never been involved in homosexuality. When people go into homosexuality they really are not looking for sex, but they are usually driven by an unmet love need from early childhood. They are really looking for the father and mother they may have never had, or that they have cut off. So when you love them and show mercy out of the heart of God, healing takes place in them.
Jesus said in Matt 18:10-14: “Take heed that you despise not one of these little ones; for I say unto you, that in heaven their angels always behold the face of my Father which is in heaven. For the Son of man has come to save that which was lost. How do you think? If a man has an hundred sheep, and one of them has gone astray, does he not leave the ninety-nine, and go into the mountains, and seek the one which has gone astray? And if he finds it, truly I say unto you, he rejoices more over that one sheep, than of the ninety-nine, which never went astray. Even so it is not the will of your Father, which is in heaven, that one of these little ones should perish".
People who struggle with homosexuality are called to the table of the Lord. Their inheritance is salvation and as far as the east is from the west, God cast their sins and remembers them no more. For angels themselves are working to help set free those who are in the bondage of sin. There are times I sit with an individual in the discipleship/counseling room. Where it is almost as if I can hear the sound of steel ringing of the angels’ swords being pulled out for battle. Angels fighting the demons of hell that are trying to take their life. Hebrews and Psalms tells us that there are ministering angels sent to those who will inherit salvation.
God has arranged His forces to bring as many as possible to Christ. There are four forces that cannot change and a fifth force that can change. However, there is a sixth force that the fifth force can elect to use or not. Who are these forces? They are the Father, the Son, the Holy Spirit and the angels who are all dedicated to the word of salvation. Who are the other two forces? The fifth force is you and I. We can support the word of God pertaining to salvation or we can elect to neglect the word of God and alienate people with the force of destruction.
John 10:10 says: “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.”
When we become that sacrificial priest performing sacrifice with our tongues, are we not alienating others and ourselves with forces of destruction? Are we thinking that our verbal ritual is pleasing to God because we took a religious stand against such filth, such sin? Oh how the tongue can be a deadly weapon. Do we stand like a merciful and faithful high priest in service to God? Do we sacrifice people who struggle with the ugly sins so we can feel totally justified? Consider what God has done for us through His Son. Jesus is not ashamed to call anyone his brothers regardless of how ugly a person’s background.
“In bringing many sons to glory, it was fitting that God, for whom and through whom everything exists, should make the author of their salvation perfect through suffering. Both the one who makes men holy and those who are made holy are of the same family. So Jesus is not ashamed to call them brothers. He says, ‘I will declare your name to my brothers; in the presence of the congregation I will sing your praises.’ And again, ‘I will put my trust in him.’ And again he says, ‘Here am I, and the children God has given me.’ Since the children have flesh and blood, he too shared in their humanity so that by his death he might destroy him who holds the power of death-that is, the devil- and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death. For surely it is not angels he helps, but Abraham's descendants. For this reason he had to be made like his brothers in every way, in order that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest in service to God, and that he might make atonement for the sins of the people. Because he himself suffered when he was tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted.” Heb 2:10-18
Should the Church be willing to help those who are being tempted? Isn’t it to your benefit that you love mercy and lavish mercy out to others? Remember it is the gentleness of God that leads anyone to repentance. (Romans 2:4).
“Therefore, as God's chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity. Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.” Col. 3:12-17
Oh precious Church listen; please love mercy, for it was God's mercies that loved you in your sins. Return the same kind of love, gentleness and mercy that God showed to you, to those who are in need of the touch of the Savior.
“For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior; Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth. For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.” 1 Tim. 2:3-5
When salvation comes God imputes His righteousness into us. When we are dealing with a person who is entangled in sin, God looks beyond the sin to discover the real person. God see the person as one who can be delivered and forgiven of all sins. He sees such a soul through the righteousness of Christ. He desires to bestow goodness and impute His holy righteousness into him. The proof is in the CROSS. Therefore the next time you are confronted with a person struggling with homosexuality or any other sin look through the eyes of Jesus from the CROSS. Look beyond the sin and find the person whom God desires to make guiltless in His very sight. See a person who is in need of the Savior’s touch. Ask yourself, “How can I help this person come into the knowledge of salvation and to really know the Lord Jesus Christ?”
“For it pleased the Father that in Him all the fullness should dwell, and by Him to reconcile all things to Himself, by Him, whether things on earth or things in heaven, having made peace through the blood of His cross. And you, who once were alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now He has reconciled in the body of His flesh through death, to present you holy, and blameless, and above reproach in His sight-- IF indeed you continue in the faith, grounded and steadfast, and are not moved away from the hope of the gospel which you heard, which was preached to every creature under heaven, of which I, Paul, became a minister.” Col. 1:19-23.
You can be Jesus to the lost and “perverted” around you. Just meditate on HIS SACRIFICE FOR YOU. The penalty has been paid. We do not have to add any more sacrifices. Remember Calvary and be the mercy of God to those who need Him.