Someone challenged me on the supposedly anti-gay Romans 1. I challenged him on restricting his concern to a single sin from that chapter. His name is James.
James, Romans 1: 28-32 contains a list of sins of the mind. Sometimes that mind is called depraved, or useless. The following are also in Romans 1.
“Since they thought it foolish to acknowledge God, he abandoned them to their foolish thinking and let them do things that should never be done. Their lives became full of every kind of wickedness:
- malicious behavior
- They disobey their parents.
- They refuse to understand.
- They break their promises.
- They are heartless.
- They have no mercy.
They know God’s justice requires that those who do these things deserve to die, yet they do them anyway. Worse yet, they encourage others to do them, too.”
You single out one sin in Romans 1, yet there are 26 sins in the chapter. All of us Christians are afflicted with the sins of the useless, foolish, depraved mind. Yet some of us want to single out gays and lesbians for special criticism.
James, please read Romans 2:1-5:
“You may think you can condemn such people, but you are just as bad, and you have no excuse! When you say they are wicked and should be punished, you are condemning yourself, for you who judge others do these very same things.
“And we know that God, in his justice, will punish anyone who does such things.
“Since you judge others for doing these things, why do you think you can avoid God’s judgment when you do the same things?
“Don’t you see how wonderfully kind, tolerant, and patient God is with you? Does this mean nothing to you? Can’t you see that his kindness is intended to turn you from your sin?
“But because you are stubborn and refuse to turn from your sin, you are storing up terrible punishment for yourself.”
James, with God’s grace I try to live by this as much as I can.
James, to grow into the man of God you desire to be you will need to learn to be like Christ. Jesus did not condemn or judge the people whom he loved and to whom he ministered.
The only people Jesus was rough on were people who made a living off the people of God and misrepresented God to them. These were the money changers, and the scribes, Pharisees, and priests who made God’s people feel guilty, condemned, and unworthy of God.