Because God is a just God and cannot tolerate sin. It is a problem that must be dealt with before we can be in His perfect presence. But God is also a loving God and cannot tolerate not having us either. Which is we He sent Jesus.
Annulment of sins directly by God? That’s exactly what He did; Jesus is God Himself. Someone had to pay for our evil; that is how justice works. God loved us so much that He took the punishment Himself. And He’s the only sacrifice holy enough to take the punishment.
Pretty awesome, right?
Because God is a just God and cannot tolerate sin. It is a problem that must be dealt with before we can be in His perfect presence. But God is also a loving God and cannot tolerate not having us either. Which is we He sent Jesus.
Neanderthals buried their dead and may have worn jewelry. Homo erectus seems to have divvied up jobs to prepare food and sailed the high seas. Even with little to go on, we can be fairly certain the Denisovans wore jewelry, and the much-maligned “hobbits” left tools useful for dicing up lunch….
I am sorry that I have led you think that my beliefs are even slightly shameful or sad. As you acknowledged, that is not how I see it, but regardless, I’d like others to have the same understanding that I have. I believe it’s the truth, and I’m hard to convince.
I will be the first to admit that I struggle with hating. We all do. That’s just obvious. But, in all honesty, hating homosexuals is something I really really do not struggle with. Seriously. There is no question in my mind about that. What reason do I have to hate them? I just don’t see any. So, I don’t think it’s legitimate to say that I have hate in my heart. I mean, you’ve concluded that I have a sad life and a hateful heart after looking at a few posts of mine on the internet. A bit axiomatic.
And actually, it’s very loving to call homosexuality a sin. It’s the truth in my eyes. If I call it something it’s not, that’s not just being untrue to myself and to my beliefs, but to my God. And I don’t believe homosexuality is love. That’s not to say love can’t exist somewhere in homosexual relationships, but homosexuality itself cannot be love.
And actually, I’m afraid I must correct you on your assertion about the Bible. Jesus teaches that lust itself is equivalent to acting on that lust; where the mind goes, so goes the body, and eventually the soul. Lustful thoughts are sinful in themselves and require no action upon them for them to be ‘wrong’ or sinful. The same goes for wishing death on your neighbor, but not acting on it. I can’t believe that murderous thoughts could ever be thought righteous, even if they weren’t acted on. I think the sinful thought accounts for itself. We’re called to have great thoughts. Therefore, the Bible does claim immoral tendencies a sin, not just the act.
Lastly, my intention with the word ‘tendencies’ was not simply immoral thoughts, or unacted upon desires. In ways I care not to go into, I acted on them many times. Depending how far back you’ve gone on my blog, you may know that I have not always been a Christian. Only recently, about a year ago, did I truly devote my life to God.
At any rate, I hope you have a blessed day, Evie (if I may call you that). Thank you for your message.
First, I need to point out that you actually cannot tell me that for a fact. No intelligent human will claim to be omniscient about anything. No one can know everything about even the tiniest of things. Further, most intelligent humans will tell you that in the list of things they can’t know everything about is themselves. No one knows completely about themselves. You sound pretty self-confident, which isn’t a bad thing, but you can’t tell me exactly who you are. No one can, especially not me. But my point is, the brain makes choices all the time with out your conscious effort or awareness. Second, you could tell me it’s true, but you could either be lying to me, yourself, or both of us. I could guess which situation it is, but It’s likely that I’d be wrong, and it’s hardly relevant.
I had a nearly identical question to this one at one point. Yes, I’m going to give you another link, I’m sorry it couldn’t be a more personal response, but the questions are so similar, I’d just be repeating the majority of it:
No, but seriously. Go read that one. For real. You asked about this. I assume your intention wasn’t just to spite me or prove me wrong but to actually discuss and understand each other. To do that, you need to read that post.
A personal point (like yours at the end of this question): I had homosexual tendencies when I was younger, and not even that much younger. Like no joke. I won’t go into it in depth, but just know that I wasn’t just ‘bored’ or ‘curious.’ I had sin in my heart. And I made the conscious decision to turn from those tendencies and walk the path of righteousness. While your account for your sexuality lies in a nebulous declaration that you just didn’t choose, my account is rooted in firm awareness of my actions and decisions, and the knowledge that I did choose differently than the path my heart thought it desired.
As for your whole “why do you think it’s somehow not hateful to be against homosexuality” question, this one’s pretty obvious. My utterly secular English teacher would agree with me on this one (we don’t agree on a lot of things). He just talked about it today, that modern society is becoming increasingly less okay with disagreement. You think simply because I disagree with you, I’m being hateful. But that’s just silly. I think homosexuality is a sin. That’s not hate. I don’t hate homosexuals; that would be idiotic and hypocritical. I also think premarital sex is a sin, but that doesn’t mean I hate those who’ve had premarital sex. I think theft and murder are sins, and am I hateful for thinking that? Certainly you agree that I am not. Racism and ethnicity have nothing to do with this, and neither does hate.
I hope I answered this well. Next question.
To your first question: That is a very good question that I would love to answer privately, but I can’t openly for many reasons. First, the internet is a silly place already. Second, in depth discussion of such a problem can, believe it or not, be “triggering” and I surely do not wish that upon any of my brothers and sisters. Third, I have many friends and family that see my blog, as well as businesses that I apply for a job at (if they ask for websites). I have a personal journey through that problem that I am willing to share with you personally, but not publicly, which I hope is understandable. Surely in your anonymity you can understand how identity on the internet is sometimes unsuitable.
There are basically two major problems with masturbation.
“For this is the will of God, your sanctification: that you abstain from sexual immorality; that each one of you know how to control his own body in holiness and honor, not in the passion of lust like the Gentiles who do not know God…” -1 Thessalonians 4:3-5
”But among you there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality, or of any kind of impurity, or of greed, because these are improper for God’s holy people.” -Ephesians 5:3
The first major problem with it is its sinfulness as sexual immorality. The Bible is immensely clear on this subject. There are of course many other verses. It sets clear lines on what is sexually moral and sexually immoral. I think we all can conceive what “not even a hint” means. Outside of marriage, all sexual actions are immoral. Now we can take this at face value when answering the question “why is it immoral?” and say “because God said so.” And while that is true in a way, that’s not the entire truth. It is immoral because that is the way that humanity was created. It is not a bad for us because it is a sin. It is a sin because it is bad for us. God created us with a certain image. Sexuality outside of marriage and lust are just not part of that image. And we know that we are made in God’s image; therefore, since He is only Good and only Love, we must be made to be a part of that Purity. And also part of its sexual immorality is the lust that goes with it. Some claim that you can masturbate without lust, but I hardly believe it. And even if it were true, the second major problem takes care of that. “Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body.” -1 Corinthians 6:18 I think that’s pretty clear. Masturbation is a sin against ones own body.
“All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our sinful nature and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature objects of wrath.” -Ephesians 2:3
”So I say, live by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature” -Galatians 5:16
”Rather, clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the sinful nature.” -Romans 13:14
The second major problem is its sin as gratification of the flesh. Think about it: are we clothed with our Lord, Jesus Christ, when we are masturbating? Are we masturbating for the glory of God? Are we living by the Spirit when we gratify the flesh? This criteria alone makes the idea clear. The Ephesians verse even tells us that when we gratify the flesh, in any manner, we are objects of wrath, yet another sinful characteristic of masturbation.
Simply enough, our bodies are not designed for masturbation. It is a terribly lonely and desperate action, a cry for attention and love. When one masturbates, it is a yearn to fill the hole in every human’s heart with sexual gratification. A chapter in one of Dr. Laura Schlessinger’s book, 10 Stupid Things Men Do To Mess Up Their Lives (though I am sure it applies with women as well), was “Stupid Sex” (Chapter 5). It’s one sentence description is, if I might say, perfect: “Taking attraction as a ‘sign,’ you measure your masculinity and power by sexual conquests, infidelities, and orgasms” (back cover).
There are so many factors that go into why a person would turn to masturbation in the first place: physical maturation, emotional maturation, physical immaturity, emotional immaturity, subpar parenting (one-sided or two-sided), sexual incidents before any type of maturity (like rape), low self-esteem, exposure to pornography, scantily clad members of the opposite sex (or of the same sex, as many will struggle with homosexuality as well), alienation, loneliness, depression, or plain boredom. Often it is a combination. Some may ‘get off the hook’ by telling themselves “well, at least I’m not having sex outside of marriage.” I assure you, it is equally bad.
But really, the most important question is your third and final one.
How do I get out of this rut?
This is where I’d love to share my personal experience with you. Check out the XXXChurch (http://www.xxxchurch.com/). They have a beautiful 30-day program. It does cost, but I am more than confident in its success. It really deals more with pornography addictions which is not exactly the same. This may not be your best option.
But what I love most about the program is the accountability.
Find an accountability partner. You need someone who you do not ever want to tell that you masturbated. First thing your mind is going to do is tell you “No, I don’t want to do that.” Of course not, that’s the point. Now get over it. Of course, that person also needs to be someone that you can share personal things with because I don’t mean your grandmother. I mean your small group leader, or maybe your parents, or maybe a friend, but only if you know that friend is going to keep you accountable. Because that’s the whole point.
With smoking addictions, experts always tell us that you cannot simply go with out a cigarette. You have to replace it with something. For smokers, that’s chewing gum, or a Hershey’s kiss, or doing a couple rounds on the punching bag. The key is not to replace it with something just as bad or even bad at all, but something that is equally effective. A bonus would be making it something that is actually beneficial. A good example is exercising. How many times do you lust in a day or get the urge, however subtle, to masturbate? If you’re doing push-ups each time, your body is going to start to get into shape. And soon enough, you’ve formed a good habit. And every one needs more of those.
Now, your replacement may not be push-ups, or running, or punching a punching bag/pillow. It could be calling a family member that you’d like to get closer to. Or going to the park (preferably when there are others there as well) or going to a restaurant or coffee shop. Or playing piano, or driving around. As long as it is effective. By far, one of the best replacements would be getting into His Holy Word, the Bible. Of course, you should be doing this anyway, but any time is a good time to start. ;) This is another instance where combining is relevant. Go to the park to read His Word, or a coffee shop (don’t go driving :).
But the greatest tip is, when you get that urge, however subtle (because we both know how easily we can slip into temptation), go somewhere where you are not alone. But know that you are always with God, never truly alone. (How heartening too! :)
Pray about it, brother/sister. Keep talking to me if you need some more help. I’d would love to provide it. I’ll pray for you as well.
Have a fantastic New Years week. :)
First, I’d ask them what he or she was doing. If it were truly a crisis, an abomination, something that needed to be fixed in their eyes, they’d be doing something about it. And the very same goes for everyone.
Second, anyone asking this is, of course, not very close to God. You have to get to know and talk to Him before you can begin to understand Him. I get it, God doesn’t make sense to Atheists; it wouldn’t make sense to me either if I hadn’t gotten close to God and tried to understand Him.
God instilled in our very souls free will. That is the single most important act in all of existence. This concept is important to understand because it governs everything. I like to think of it as a spectrum!
Look around our universe! The Superstring theory reaches into the depths of creation, and describes the 1-dimensional oscillating lines that make up the fabric of the universe. This along with quantum mechanics and general relativity seem to imply a general chaos into the make-up of existence. Yet look at how sophisticated even single-cell organisms are, how orderly galaxies and DNA are, to human ideas of alphabets and paintings. Our Earth is positioned perfectly in our solar system for life. I mean, why should I be aware that I am aware that I am aware that I am etc…? You see, creation is a perfect balance between chaos and order.
What does this have to do with starving souls in Africa? When one asks for the big picture, you have to construct it using details. When one asks for details, you have to begin with the big picture and work down to it. To understand this detail of creation, one has to understand how creation is set up.
When given free will, death was introduced into our world. “For the wages of sin is death…” -Romans 6:23a. Diseases, deformities, painful childbirth, starvation, etc. But the second half of that verse is the focus of life, the universe, and everything (Douglas Adams reference). “…but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus, our Lord.” There is hope. God has done something. He’s done the most important something. He’s done more than anyone ever could have. He has offered salvation to any of those who should choose it. How easy, how awesome, how righteous?
But wait… They’re still starving…?
Here is where free will comes in once again: God does not do everything for us. If God did that, what we be good for here on Earth? If He did it all, it would be logical that after we were saved, we would ascend to Heaven, because we have no other purpose but to be saved. Good dang thing that is not how it works. God has given us a purpose: the Great commission! It is our duty to spread God’s word! (It is not our duty to save souls, we don’t have that power; we simply open people’s hearts to the Holy Spirit, God, and His Word) And, in the end, even if these people live their entire lives in extreme penury and pain, it will be nothing like the agony of Hell, which is egregious and incalculable. I cannot imagine an eternity in extreme chaos, a place devoid of God.
Feeding them is part of our plan. But our goal does not ultimately lay in saving their physical lives, for it is already doomed to death. Our goal lays in their eternal life in Heaven.
If this person questions you on this, question them in return; what is he or she doing for this cause? Help them understand our universe a bit better. Help them understand self-reflection. The blame rarely lies elsewhere. I know that personally. I am severely guilty for many things. This included.
Man, I really need an accountability partner!
Anyway, beautiful question! I am so very sorry for the intolerable amount of time that it took to respond. I had kind of a down week last week (I know, on Thanksgiving! I am a bummer!) Fill your least favorite brother or sister with love this week, whether you want to or not! :)
Hello, :) I’m sorry that it hurts your feelings. I don’t wish to attack who you are you or any one else, and I know many homosexuals identify themselves with their sexuality powerfully. The point of rebuking is in no way pain, but is love, and some have yet to grasp this concept when teaching.
I thought it was very interesting that you said, “but that doesn’t mean if I was God I would say it was a sin.” First, we must realize, of course, that God has no gender. Second, no person (least not me, lol) could ever be God - And I know that’s not what you’re saying, that you could be God, but I’m drawing the distinction between God and humans. God doesn’t have a sexuality - He IS love. He loves all, because that’s who He is. So then why do we have a sexuality, why should we be straight?
The answer lies in our creation. We were made with a sex, and with a sexuality, two things God doesn’t have, and this is a very integral part of us, down to our very souls. Man and Woman were made in the distinct respects of God’s nature, how God is. Man was made to be the leader, strong, etc. Woman was made with grace and beauty, etc. But there are many many things that man and woman have in common, such as creativity, adventurousness, etc. And there are some of each trait in both, like leadership and strength are also present in women. And the same goes for beauty and grace in men, even when they don’t like being called beautiful. :D And all of these are traits of God, found in God. But, you see, man and woman are, really, but half of a puzzle, one puzzle piece, carrying half of God’s nature. And we were made to come together in marriage, become one, and be the stunning image of God. Man is not meant to be alone. Now, All of that was why I believe heterosexuality is right and in the image of God.
Now there are some verses about sexual immorality and blahblahblah that I could throw at you for why homosexuality is wrong, but you’ve probably seen those, and even without them, I believe it is manifest as to why homosexuality is wrong. There is something important I wish to communicate. Many times (even myself, at one point) people are more offended by the declaration of homosexuality as a sin because they are thinking of it this way: they are told that homosexuality is only unnatural because it is, for some reason, wrong, as if the sin is independent of wrongness and only declared so. But, in fact, it is just the opposite. It’s not unnatural because it is wrong, it is wrong because it is unnatural.
And another thing that offends many (including myself at one point) is what they think wrongness is. Sin is simply what God did not create us to do or be. Well, who is God to tell us this? This response is self-explanatory, but a more common one is why would God create us for this purpose and then also create us to sin/go against this purpose. And the answer to this is one of the fundamental doctrines of Christianity.
Imagine, you have a basket of puppies. Also, you have the ability, somehow, to make these puppies love you, even though, without this ability, they might not love you. Now, I’m sure you and I would want to not use the ability to make them love you, you would want them to love you on their own. It’s called free will. And that is what God gave us. And the moment he did, we turned from Him, and we have yet to turn fully back to Him, and embrace Him. Now, why would we want to love God after all? If you’re curious as to the answer of this, please ask me, but, as I’m sure you’ve noticed, my response is now terribly long and I don’t want to make you read more than you have to.
The last thing I have to say is about your comment that gays cannot help who they are. This is an argument that many get powerfully into. And some think that, because someone is born with this tendency (which we all have had at some time or another) that it is a permanent and integral part of who he or she is. I disagree, and here is why: First, yes, no one is perfect. Therefore, second, we must all be born with sin in our hearts (sin being dissonace with God’s nature). Therefore, third, the belief that someone born gay could not change naturally implies and leads to the assumption that, if we all have sin in our hearts, none of us could change. And I hope that it is manifest for you that this is not true; people change all of the time, yes for the better. I know of homosexuals that have gone to counseling at my church and discussed for many weeks and went to church for many weeks, and they worked through their sexual immoralities. And no, not everyone one will change, but everyone can change. And that is one of the most important things to realize about life. I am born a sinner, a liar, a cheater, a thief, a luster, a loner, a hater, but most of all, I am born the son of God. And so not only is it wrong for me to continue in my sin, but my sin no longer has any hold on me. I am free of it. I do not need it, and I do not want it. Though I fall seven times, I will rise again. For I have in me the power of change. And so does every other living person.
Thank so much for such a good question. And I’m sorry I had a lot to say, haha. Feel free to ask any other question you wish! Have a wonderful week.
God loves them so immensely. As a very good song by a very good band put it: “No eye has seen, No ear has heard, The depths of Your love.”
A homosexual is just the same as any other sinner. God hates all sin.
But God cannot hate any of His creation. There are things God can’t do. His very nature dictates good, and if bad is outside of good, then God can’t do it. God can’t lie, God can’t hate, God can’t sin. It is not possible.
God loves homosexuals so impossibly much. He loves you so impossibly much. He loves me so impossibly much. Even when I fail Him! Everyday I fail Him! And He still loves me…
Who else does that?
I tell you, no one…
Thank you for your question, please ask any question you wish. :)
P.S. When you get your afro, I want to see. :D