Saturday, August 18, 2012

Beams, Bigots, and the Beatitudes...My Thoughts

It seems that everyone is "coming out of the closet" these days. This is even happening in the world of Gospel Music."Coming out"  the common phrase used today when someone who is a homosexual decides to let the world know their sexual inclinations, usually someone from the Hollywood culture. Although usually not a surprise many of us would rather not know. This is considered free speech and expression. Sadly the same standards don't seem to apply when the conservative Christian doesn't agree with the ungodly lifestyle of others and expresses their opinion. The Bible has a lot to say on this matter  also, we will get to that later.

We are told we should not judge others. Quotes will show up in blogs about the beam in our eye when we are focusing on the speck in our brothers eye. Some of the newer ones in response to"Love the sinner, hate the sin" tell us we should focus on hating our own sin. Of course, only the quotes of Jesus about this are given, none about helping our brother out of sin, or the authority of God's Word. And yes, there is some truth here as it sounds good at face value. Our preaching should point to Christ in a loving way, but sometimes we have to be specific, something lacking in many of today's sugar coated sermonettes.

Theologians have a term for focusing only on the words of red while ignoring the rest of the New Testament. They term this the Christological Fallicy. Romans Chapter one warns of the consequences of the ungodly lifestyle. The rest of Chapter One is o surprisingly up to date.

18 God’s wrath is being revealed from heaven against all the ungodly behavior and the injustice of human beings who silence the truth with injustice. 19 This is because what is known about God should be plain to them because God made it plain to them. 20 Ever since the creation of the world, God’s invisible qualities—God’s eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, because they are understood through the things God has made. So humans are without excuse. 21 Although they knew God, they didn’t honor God as God or thank him. Instead, their reasoning became pointless, and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 While they were claiming to be wise, they made fools of themselves. 23 They exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images that look like mortal humans: birds, animals, and reptiles. 24 So God abandoned them to their hearts’ desires, which led to the moral corruption of degrading their own bodies with each other.

The Bible does hold the Christian responsible for speaking the truth in love to others. As Christians and as Wesleyans we are obligated to do so. We have practiced civil disobedience in the past when man's law conflicted with God's law. We may have to do so again in this upside down world. I close with what James had to say about the matter. I love James' practical insights into Christian living.

" My brothers and sisters, if any of you wander from the truth and someone turns back the wanderer, recognize that whoever brings a sinner back from the wrong path will save them from death and will bring about the forgiveness of many sins." James 5:19,20 CEB

Keith Kiper is an ordained minister in The Wesleyan Church. He currently serves as media pastor at Boonville Wesleyan Church. He is married to Vicky. The Kiper's have  a grown daughter Kristen, a Maltipoo named Opie, and two cats. Keith manages several facebook pages, blogs, and websites.

1 comment:

Mr. Mcgranor said...

I am a bigot--as the the others deem. Because i oppose, and will not fall to the world. Then i look for my place in a society that finds promiscuity and indifference to be Christian ethics.