Can I love gays and lesbians and still view their lifestyle as sinful?

Rick Brentlinger Answers -

Recently a non-gay Christian asked me that question. Here is my answer. Your Comments welcome.

To answer your question, It is probably possible to love gays and lesbians and still believe that we should not be gay BUT you will have a hard time convincing gays and lesbians that your attitude is really loving.

The problem with your question is that non-gay Christians tend to stereotype gay Christians by making statements like, "I believe the gay lifestyle is sinful."

To be honest, there is no such thing as the gay lifestyle anymore than there is something called the heterosexual lifestyle.

According to Christianity Today magazine, August 31, 2009,

"just under 80 percent of unmarried, church-going, conservative Protestants who are currently dating someone are having sex of some sort."

Would it be fair or honest to characterize all Christians as living a sinful "heterosexual lifestyle" because of CTs 80 percent?

No, it would not be fair to draw that conclusion. Yet that is precisely what is done time after time to gay and lesbian Christians by folks who claim to love us.

The point is that while non-gay Christians express a desire to be our friends, they continue to say and do immensely hurtful things which, if the situation were reversed, and non-gay Christians were on the receiving end of such treatment, would not be regarded as friendly.

My experience has been that most gays and lesbians want to be friends, even with Christians who disagree with us and consider us to be living in sin because we are gay or lesbian.

The difficulty arises when those Christians who tell us they want to be our friends then support using the power of government against us, by voting to make it illegal for our committed partnerships to have the protection of law. We are told:

'We want to be your friend but we believe you don't have the same right we have, to spend your life with an orientation-compatible partner.'

There are over 1000 legal protections in federal and state law, which protect heterosexual married couples and their families but which do not protect homosexual married couples and their families.

Many gay couples have biological children yet even though they are in committed same sex partnerships, their biological children are not legally protected, in the event of the death of one of the same sex partners, if the surviving spouse is not the biological parent.

In the case of a serious illness, even when the gay partners have legal papers giving each other the legal right to make medical decisions for each other, some hospitals refuse to honor those legal papers.

What you believe about me as a gay man can greatly affect my freedom if what you believe about me causes you to vote to take away my freedom.

Hate the sin -
love the sinner!

Its easy for non-gay Christians to intone, "Hate the sin but love the sinner" and think they've said something profound.

Yet their actions, like voting to prohibit gay marriage or voting to prohibit gay couples from inheriting each others earned pension and real estate or voting to prohibit gay couples from adopting children, even when the children are the biological children of one of the partners, contradict the "love the sinner" mantra.

I'd love to hear
non-gay Christians
respond to this question.

If gay people were in the majority and we organized to vote to take away your heterosexual right to marry your heterosexual spouse and to vote to take away your right to legally parent your children and to vote to take away your right to allow your spouse to make medical decisions for you in the event of catastrophic illness,

"Would you believe our offer
of friendship was authentic?"

The history of Gay Marriage plus many helpful Links.

We've answered the question: Can I love gays and lesbians and still view their lifestyle as sinful?

Comments for Can I love gays and lesbians and still view their lifestyle as sinful?

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May 16, 2013
Loving Sinners
by: Terry

There are basically two issues you have raised in your question. The first is can you love sinners, and the second implies that homosexuality is sinful.

We, as Christians, are called upon to love all sinners, and that is the basic motivation for seeking to save the lost and bring them into the Kingdom of God. The Apostle Paul reached out to the gentile world of his day which often lived in a manner which would be shocking to us today. And never forget that in truth we are all sinners who are saved by God's grace and love. None of us are sinless; none of us love God or others as completely as we should.

Your assumption implied in your question is that homosexuality is sinful. Let me begin by saying that many homosexuals are living very sinful lives by having multiple sexual partners and making sex a recreation. Many heterosexual men are engaged in the same activity - having as many sexual partners as possible, and using their sexuality as recreation. But homosexual orientation is a neutral issue, neither good nor bad.

The issue is love and commitment. Sex is meant to be expressed in a committed life-long relationship. Many heterosexual marriages exemplify this blessed expression of sexuality, and many marriages are debased or destroyed by sexual infidelity. Many homosexual marriages also express the greatest fidelity, love and sharing. In summation of this point, homosexual orientation is not the issue - the quality of the love and fidelity in a relationship is the factor which makes it beautiful or destructive and hurtful.

And one final point. It is the hurtful and angry attitude of conservative Christians which drive many homosexuals away from a relationship with God - away from salvation - and away from a spiritual foundation which would guide them to desire healthy, God-pleasing marriages. Please join me in prayer for forgiveness for those pastors who use homosexuality as a wedge issue to fire up their congregants at the expense of multitudes of gay people who will go to hell because they are ridiculed and rejected by Christians.

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