Grace - An Update
In my previos post named "Grace" a man named John Marsh left a serious and lucid comment. He said:
"I have never heard someone teach that a person can struggle with homosexuality and not be saved, but it does not surprise me. Struggle is one thing saying homosexuality is not sin is another. I pray for my lesbian and homosexual acquaintances that they will come to know our savior Jesus Christ."
I echo his sentiment, but let me take this a dangerous step further. Can a man be a practicing homosexual and be saved even if he remains blind to that particular sin? If not, then can a man be saved and a hedonist who saves up sums of money for his recreational travel when he retires even when Jesus Himslef commanded us not to lay up treasures for ourselves upon this earth? Can a man be saved even though he listens to and agrees with carnal radio and television millionaires who denegrate and castigate lost sinners just because they are "liberal". Can a man be saved who places his hand upon his heart and pledges his allegiance to a secular and carnal nation in the church sancuary, and is blind to that idolatry?
The question is does a man have to be both cognizant and free from all forms of sin and not practice something that God disapproves of to be saved? The church, for instance, has steadily diluted the practice of divorce until even the pastor can get divorced and remarry another without stepping down from his pastorate. The church is filled with people who when questioned say that divorce and remarriage is sin and yet with that profession still do it when the time arises. Are they saved? Many of the remarried people are married to someone with whom they started a relationship before their divorce and yet they are members of the local church and sing in the choir. To them we extend grace.
Does God hate sin? Absolutely! Do all of us sin unknowingly and knowingly every day. Absolutely! And some people who remain faithful to their spouses and never commit one of the more serious sins have never been born again. Only God knows the heart, but if there are some sins that cannot be practiced if a person is regenerated then what are they? The phenomenon of professing believers who are gay and continue to be blind to their situation continues to grow. And just like heterosexuals some who profess are not born again.
However, there are now gay people who read God's Word, pray daily, support mission, are active in a local church, and who have given up drugs, alcohol, and multiple partners because their lives have been changed in thos areas. And in some cases, their sexual preferences aside, their lives shine more brightly than many heterosexual pew dweller who show very little spiritual passion and yet are members in goodstanding.
When a sinner comes to Christ and is transformed, does the church place him on a time restraint if he has vast amounts of money gained through exorbitant interest charges at the pawn shop he owns? (25% per month) What if owns a chain of liquor stores, must he liquidate before his salvation is considered authentic? What if someone has had a surgical sex change and gets saved, does he have to have a reversal? And what if these people, after professing Christ, still run the pawn shop, still run his liquor stores, and still feel like they were meant to have that sex change - can anyone of them be saved?
So my contention is this: God's grace is His own and many will eneter the kingdom who perhaps do not have our approval, and some with whom we approve may not enter. I would appreciate your thoughts - thoughtful thoughts - concerning the subject.