Recently, a visiting preacher in a local congregation in the county told the audience that as Christians we need to be accepting of homosexual couples who are raising children.
The crucial question in evaluating our own attitudes is this: Is the problem under consideration a matter of mere custom, tradition, habit, taste, culture, or a direct command of God? Is it a matter involving some moral or ethical principle which is taught by God? If it is merely a custom or tradition or taste, the decision may lead to us accepting it. But if it is a matter involving a principle of God, the decision to accept it must depend upon if it violates what God has said.
The degrading and despicable sin of homosexuality is condemned in both the Old Testament and in the New Testament (Gen. 18:20; Gen. 19:4-5; Lev. 20:13; Rom. 1:24-32; Gal. 5:19-21). Christians must resist the temptation to go along with the pressure to conform to our society by accepting homosexual couples trying to raise children. Why? The Bible plainly says, “Do not conform to this world” (Rom. 12:1-2). It must be emphasized that marriage between a man and woman only is what God will accept, and so-called “same-sex marriage” is called an abomination.
Jesus was intolerant toward the money changers and merchants in the temple, because they were dishonestly robbing the common people by overcharging them for the sacrificial animals and by requiring a premium when exchanging their money (John 2:13-16). In addition, they were doing all this in the area of the temple, which God had decreed should remain free from merchandising. Because of their sinful acts, Jesus was not accepting of their conduct. His intolerance was because of the evils which He opposed.
This leads us to the clear conclusion that there are times when it is right to be intolerant, just as there are other times when it is wrong to be intolerant. In matters which are primarily concerns of custom and culture, it would seem to be wise to exercise feelings of acceptance, charity, patience and understanding. In matters which involve an ethical principle of God, we must not be accepting of sin, but “abstain from all appearance of evil” (I Thess. 5:22). The Greek here indicates to abstain from evil in whatever form it appears. The Greek word for “abstain” is “apechesthe” from the verb “apache” which means “to keep oneself away from.”
If we start whittling ourselves down to fit what others think we ought to do in accepting sin, we will very soon be whittled away completely.
Fzinally, in making all kinds of decisions, Christians must seek to determine whether a matter falls into the category of tradition or custom or whether it falls into a category involving moral and ethical principles of God. It is all too easy to follow the crowd which is the way to eternal death. If we allow ourselves to be saturated with the ways of the world, we will gradually be molded into a pattern of unrighteousness.
The bottom line is that in order to go to Heaven when we die is to obey the gospel, live a faithful Christian life, and not be accepting of sin!
----- Earl Sutton