|Episcopalian calls on the Church to embrace homosexuality|
|Written by Chris Perver|
|Monday, 06 October 2008 05:38|
Father Paul Bresnahan of St. Peter's Episcopal Church in Salem has called on all religions to recognize, accept and celebrate the homosexual lifestyle during an address on the subject of sexual identity in the Episcopalian Church. Bresnahan said he believes that there is room enough in God's love for everyone, and that the Church needed to move with the times or risk becoming irrelevant in the modern world. Within the past few years many countries across the world have passed legislation legalizing homosexual civil unions and prohibiting discrimination based on sexual orientation. But only a few Christian denominations have embraced the homosexual lifestyle, which is in stark contrast to the Biblical teaching that marriage ought to be between a man and a woman. One such denomination has been the Episcopalian Church in the United States of America, which recently elected a female leader who believes that God created homosexuality. And so Father Bresnahan continues in Schori's doctrine, promoting the homosexual lifestyle and making God the justifier of unrighteousness.
Quote: "Bresnahan acknowledged that many different religious denominations struggle with acceptance of homosexuality, but he said the struggle was necessary for the church to keep up with the times. "It's going to be tough, but the world will teach the church," he said. "The world is going way ahead of us, and we need to catch [up] or be left behind."
Bresnahan's remarks are a sad indictment of the state of the Church today. But although his words may be reprehensible, there is a ring of truth about what he has said. Unfortunately many churches are adopting world views that are diametrically opposed to the teaching of the Scriptures. And the world, which Bresnahan says is way ahead of us, is destined for destruction and many are following in its wake. I was very sad when I heard about the Christian singer, Ray Boltz, how he recently divorced his wife and is now living a homosexual lifestyle. Unfortunately Ray has fallen into the same erroneous teaching, that God somehow made him this way and that he must be true to the way God has made him.
Quote: ""This is what it really comes down to," he says. "If this is the way God made me, then this is the way I'm going to live. It's not like God made me this way and he'll send me to hell if I am who he created me to be... I really feel closer to God because I no longer hate myself."
Ray believes that this is the way God made him to be. Thus he has made God the justifier of his own unrighteousness, in saying that God created him to sin, therefore he has no option but to continue in it. We were all born in sin and shapen in iniquity (Psalm 51:5), but God did not create us to be that way. Man has chosen this way himself. The homosexual lifestyle is just one sin among many. I am not criticizing Ray for this particular sin. But what I am saying is, it is wrong for any of us to say God created us to be a sinner. Ray says he feels closer to God because he no longer hates himself, but in reality he no longer hates himself because his conscience is no longer bothering him. The reason why his conscience is no longer bothering him is because he has convinced himself that God created homosexuality, therefore the homosexual lifestyle must not be sin. God did not create homosexuality. But it can be viewed as a judgement from God upon those who do not wish to retain God in their knowledge (Romans 1:28). There are three things that God has given us to keep us spiritually on track. The conscience, which all people have been given by God, and which will be used to convict the unbeliever on the day of judgement (Romans 2:14-16). It is possible for a person to sear their conscience so that it no longer does the job God has created it to do (1st Timothy 4:2). This is one of the signs of the last days. God has also given us His Word, which reveals to us God's standard of holiness, and acts like a mirror reflecting our own short-comings (James 1:23-25). Ray says he is unwilling to enter into Scriptural debate about his homosexual lifestyle, therefore he has removed himself from under the authority of the Word of God. If God created homosexuality then there should not be problem defending it from the Scriptures. The third thing that God has given to us is the Holy Spirit, and one of His jobs is to bring conviction of sin (John 16:8). God has promised that if we confess our sin, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sin, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness (1st John 1:9). But God's Spirit can be grieved if we don't confess our sin and keep short accounts with God (Ephesians 4:30).
What are the "times" Bresnahan said the church must "keep up with"? The answer seems to be "perilous times", 2nd Timothy 3:1. The moral depravity that this world would sink to was accurately foretold in the New Testament Scriptures. There is no doubt that we are now living in those days. True morality as defined in the Scriptures is fast being exchanged in our churches for a worldly morality that is all-inclusive and non-condemning. This worldly morality has exchanged Biblical love (love the sinner, hate their sin) for tolerance (love the sinner, accept their sin). True righteousness (hating people's sin) has been confused with judgementalism (hating people for their sin). There is no doubt Satan is the one who is behind this new morality. But God's standard of morality does not change no matter how unpopular it may be. God has already declared the whole world to be guilty before Him (Romans 3:19). And He has appointed a day in which He will judge the world in righteousness by that Man Whom He has ordained - Jesus Christ (Acts 17:31). Will Jesus Christ be your Judge on that day? Or will He be your Lord and Saviour? God hates iniquity just as much as he loves righteousness (Psalm 45:7). He hates your sin because it is what separates you from Him (Isaiah 59:2). But He loves you with an everlasting love. He proved His love for you by sending His only Son Jesus Christ into this world to bear the punishment for your sins upon the cross. And all who accept His offer of salvation can have their sins forgiven and have everlasting life in heaven (John 3:16). Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation today (Acts 16:31).