“There is a way of a man that is foolish, a way that seems right to him, and there are those who even approve of his words,”… “but in the end, it all leads to death. “ Psalm 49:13 & Proverbs 16:25
This chapter is based on 40 verses in 17 passages of Scripture
Note: All Scriptures in parenthesis appear in my book, Revealing God’s Design with Love, or can be looked up in any Bible.
The phrase “coming out”, by consensus, is openly admitting to others that one is gay or at least has homosexual leanings, feelings, or desires. Such a “coming out” admittance is more and more celebrated in American society today and now lauded as an act of bravery. It is like being proud to be identified as a teacher, doctor, soldier, athlete, civil servant, businessman or religious leader. This is true now for those claiming to be gay. To speak out against those who claim this new identity, even though the Bible strongly warns against such a lifestyle, puts those who support God’s Word on this issue at risk. The amount of risk depends upon where one lives. If we reside in a big city in a liberal state, the risk can be great. The risk is not as great for those who live in more conservative areas of the country.
Whether we like it or not, Christian values and standards which once permeated America have gradually been discarded by those currently in control of the government, courts, large businesses, and public-school systems. Add to this the continual demeaning that the entertainment and media industries have exacted on our values and standards, and we can rightfully conclude that in the years to come most Christian morality will mirror the world. If this happens then, according to the Scriptures, America will be viewed by God as a lawless and rebellious nation without any sense of His morality. This would be catastrophic as in the past when God abandoned nations who became ungodly after once believing. For example, Israel, in the Old Testament, came close to losing its entire nation twice due to its lack of faithfulness to God and His principles.
Yet you have not listened to Me declares the Lord in order that you might provoke Me to anger with the work of your hands to your own harm. Therefore, thus says the Lord, because you have not obeyed My words, I will take all the families and send them to Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, this whole land will be a desolation and a horror, and will serve the king of Babylon seventy years (Jeremiah 25:7-11 RBK)
Regardless of what the American value system becomes, practices like homosexuality and changing one’s gender have and will always dishonor God. It is not something He said was bad in a previous era, but okay today. If that were the case, then God would have amended such an important transition somewhere in Scripture. He did amend other practices like the food laws of the Old and New Testaments (Leviticus 11:4, 7; Acts 10:9-15). Homosexuality, however, is condemned in both the Old and New Testament, from Genesis to Revelation. (In the Old Testament era – see Leviticus 20:13 and Deuteronomy 22:5 below. In the current New Testament era – see Romans 1:22, 24, 26, 27 and I Timothy 1:9-11)
Therefore, “coming out” as being gay, effeminate, a cross-dresser, a transgender person, or a partner in a same-sex marriage brings greater warnings and judgments from God. “Coming out” is like saying to Him, “I don’t care what is revealed in Scripture, I will openly and proudly live my gay life, and tell others to do likewise.”
Why are there no apparent feelings of guilt for those who say this when guilt is attached to sin according to the Scripture? (Ezra 9:7; Romans 3:23; James 2:10)
The Lord uses or allows guilt not so much to punish those who are sinning but getting them to change their hearts and minds toward what they are doing. Not everyone feels the same amount of guilt when they sin against God or His teachings. Some, for instance, feel more guilt because they are closer to Him. Hopefully, the guilt they feel will lead to belief, repentance, and change which is His desire for them. Others feel less guilt because God is far off from their thoughts and plans in this life. This doesn’t mean, though, there is no guilt associated with what they are doing or have done; it just means they have effectively rationalized it and shoved it under the rug. Perhaps only at death, will they realize the magnitude of the guilt they’ve accumulated as they stand before God, face to face. The tragedy at this point is there is nothing they can do about their guilt, for it will indict and keep them out of God’s kingdom forever.
In addition to shoving guilt under the rug, there is another reason why gays, in particular, feel free and liberated when they “come out” about their homosexuality. It is because when anyone hides something for a long time, whether good or bad, and then finally confesses or exposes it, the usual result is relief and joy, at first. This reaction is just a part of the sin nature we all have, which generates a variety of false feelings and assurances. The immediate relief and joy from those who “come out,” is only a temporary elation that will eventually pass, whether they admit it or not. By personal experience, not with homosexuality, but with other sins I’ve committed, if sin is not dealt with through confession and receiving God’s forgiveness, then guilt continues, increases, and even worsens over time. As the following Psalm teaches, the guilt God gives when we sin will emotionally and physically eat away at us.
When I kept silent about my sin, my body wasted away through my groaning all day long. For day and night, Your hand was heavy upon me; my vitality was drained away as with the fever heat of summer. I acknowledged my sin to You, and my iniquity I did not hide. I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the Lord”, and You forgave the guilt of my sin. Psalm 32:3-5
Gays and those who change their gender often open up about their lifestyles because they want the company and acceptance of others. There is an adage that “misery loves company”. Gays and those who change their gender not only need the company of others for fellowship and acceptance but also to validate what they are doing. If by “coming out”, they can get a large and important following, this makes it seem like what they are doing is not so wrong, and even “right.” Nevertheless, the Bible remains very consistent and solid on homosexuality: it is wrong and is considered detestable, an abomination, and a perversion in God’s eyes. (See Leviticus 18:22-24 below)
How should we as Christians relate or minister to someone who has “come out” about their homosexuality or gender change? When someone openly admits this, I suggest we don’t try and come up with a complete Biblical perspective and solution right away, but rather thank them for sharing their revelation. Build a relationship with them before giving any Biblical answers or advice. If they are already a friend, don’t turn away from them because of the choice they’ve made. Instead, continue to listen to them, and even ask how they came to that conclusion. Let them talk about their feelings. If one session is not enough, then arrange for another. At the end of each conversation, make every effort to end with prayer, as this directly brings God into the conversation.
If they want to know how we feel about them being a transgender or gay person, then share what the Bible says about their practice or lifestyle. As you do, be kind, but don’t water down the Scriptures in the process. Let the Word speak to your friend. (Hebrews 4:12) The Word of God does not return void.
If we ever feel uncomfortable with them in our conversations, then ask another Christian to join in. If possible, choose someone who has gone through what they are now going through, but has turned to Christ. If they don’t want someone else to join in, then I suggest not meeting with them for a while. Sometimes those committing sexual sins like homosexuality have another agenda in mind when confidentially sharing about it. They may be seeking to recruit one to their viewpoint or lifestyle.
Can those who openly proclaim themselves homosexual or embrace any other derivative of it enter the kingdom of God? It all depends upon what is really in their hearts when they “come out.” In the end, only God can judge the heart and whether a person truly believes or will believe in the future. According to Scripture, if they want to have a relationship with God, but refuse to repent of their sinful lifestyles, then they will not be allowed into His kingdom. Even so, God has an endless ocean of acceptance and forgiveness available to all in the LGBT Community. Yet, He will not take any into His kingdom on their own terms, unless they put their trust in Him and ask forgiveness for all of their sins. (See I Corinthians 6: 9-11 below)
If we believe and ask God to forgive us of our sins, but then revert to some of them, will we still remain in His kingdom? The answer is yes. God promises never to leave nor forsake us, no matter what. In addition to this promise, God also gives us the Spirit to daily help us conquer old sinful habits and lifestyles. He never gives up on us. But we must not quench or grieve the Spirit, or we will end up like the person who survived a fire but lost everything else in the process.
Now if any man builds on the foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, each man’s work will become evident; for the day will show it because it is to be revealed with fire, and the fire itself will test the quality of each man’s work. If any man’s work which he has built on it remains, he will receive a reward. If any man’s work is burned up, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire. I Corinthians 3:12-15
Scriptural References for Homosexuality and Gender Change
Leviticus 20:13 If there is a man who lies with a male as those who lie with a woman, both of them have committed a detestable act; they shall surely be put to death. Their blood guiltiness is upon them.
Deuteronomy 22:5 A woman shall not wear man’s clothing, nor shall a man put on a woman’s clothing; for whoever does these things is an abomination to the Lord your God. [Forerunner to gender change]
Romans 1:20-32 22 Professing to be wise, they became fools, 24 Therefore God gave them over in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, so that their bodies would be dishonored among them. 25 For they exchanged the truth of God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen. 26 For this reason God gave them over to degrading passions; for their women exchanged the natural function for that which is unnatural, 27 and in the same way also the men abandoned the natural function of the woman and burned in their desire toward one another, men with men committing indecent acts and receiving in their own persons the due penalty of their error..
I Timothy 1:8-11 8 But we know that the Law is good, if one uses it lawfully, 9 realizing the fact that law is not made for a righteous person, but for those who are lawless and rebellious, for the ungodly and sinners, for the unholy and profane, for those who kill their fathers or mothers, for the murderers 10and immoral men and homosexuals and kidnappers and liars and perjurers, and whatever else is contrary to sound teaching, 11 according to the glorious gospel of the blessed God, with which I have been entrusted.
Leviticus 18:22-24 22 You shall not lie with a male as one lies with a female; it is an abomination. 23 Also, you shall not have intercourse with any animal to be defiled with it, nor shall any woman stand before an animal to mate with it; it is a perversion. 24 Do not defile yourselves by any of these things; for by all these the nations which I am casting out before you have become defiled.
I Corinthians 6:9-11 9 Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate [a forerunner to gender change], nor homosexuals, 10 nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God. 11 Such were some of you, but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God.