My friend Edgar asked for my opinion on some questions from some of his Sunday School students. I see the same sorts of questions from adults as well. My goal is to provide some brief, concrete answers.
First, I think it is important to have a game plan with questions like this. Whether answering a skeptic or equipping a believer to answer the skeptic, my goal is always to give clear, thoughtful answers that address the question and then point to the word of God as quickly as possible. When in doubt, I’d rather someone read the Bible than listen to me. God’s word made many promises* about what it will accomplish but contains no such promises about anything I say.
I highly recommend reading Tactics: A Game Plan for Discussing Your Christian Convictions to learn how to navigate conversations like these (only $2.99 for the Kindle edition — you can’t afford not to buy it!). The burden isn’t all on you, and the conversations don’t have to be hostile. There are many ways to ask polite questions to get people thinking more carefully and to highlight their errors.
Here is the third question:
How do you deal with questions around homosexuality? This is a tricky subject because this is a high school audience and sexuality has to be taught respectfully and with sensitivities to the teens and young ladies in the classroom.
This is a huge and contentious issue, and one that Satan is using to keep people from the faith and to divide entire denominations. Many people use the homosexual issue as an excuse not to even consider Christianity. That may tempt some people to gloss over the topic or misstate what the Bible says.
Yes, we should be sensitive with it, but when you consider about how aggressively the world pressures us with its false views I think we should be more bold in equipping young people about the details.
Make no apologies about what the Bible really says, because it couldn’t be more clear. Bible-believing Christians and even two out of the three types of pro-gay people** (religious or not) can see these truths:
- 100% of the verses addressing homosexual behavior describe it as sin in the clearest and strongest possible terms.
- 100% of the verses referring to God’s ideal for marriage involve one man and one woman.
- 100% of the verses referencing parenting involve moms and dads with unique roles (or at least a set of male and female parents guiding the children).planned
- 0% of 31,173 Bible verses refer to homosexual behavior in a positive or even benign way or even hint at the acceptability of homosexual unions of any kind.
Then there is the question of love. If you really love people you won’t affirm behavior that is spiritually, emotionally and physically destructive.
But do you have to convert people to your views on homosexuality before sharing the Gospel with them? No. Of course you shouldn’t water down the truth, but what you really want to do is share the Gospel and let God do his work on their hearts. As I noted in this post, you don’t have to fix someone’s sins before telling them the truth about Jesus. The point is to let Jesus do that! We should approach all people with humility, because we all have temptations that we’ve given into.
It is easy to quickly affirm what the Bible says (“Yes, homosexual behavior is a sin”) but then shift to the Gospel (“But even if it wasn’t a sin you would still be a sinner in need of a Savior . . .”).
Don’t be shy about pointing out the lies of the LGBTQ movement. People aren’t “born that way,” and even if they were that wouldn’t justify acting on the behavior. Quoting the Bible doesn’t make LGBTQ people commit suicide any more than saying “don’t get drunk” makes alcoholics kill themselves. “Same-sex marriage” is an oxymoron and those unions can never produce children or ever provide a mother and a father to a child, so the government has no good reasons to get involved in those relationships.
Make no mistake: The LGBTQ lobby wants to silence Christians. Lots of us may end up in jail before this is over. It may not be long until you won’t be employable if you don’t affirm the lie that the behavior isn’t sinful.
Here are some links that go into more detail. This is a crucial issue so I encourage people to read them. Feel free to use the PowerPoint slides if you like (I prepared them for a series of Sunday School lessons).
PowerPoint slides: Refuting pro-gay theology
Remember that if people are sincere in their questions and aren’t just using them as excuses to justify their rebellion against God then it is completely legitimate to let them do some of their own homework, such as reading a book like Is God a Moral Monster?: Making Sense of the Old Testament God.
If they don’t want to do more work or read the Bible, it may be pearls-before-swine time and you should obey Jesus’ command to move on. Pray for them and perhaps God will make them spiritually alive in the future. You will have done your work as an ambassador and an apologist (defender of the faith):
2 Corinthians 5:20 We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God.
1 Peter 3:15–16 (ESV) but in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect, having a good conscience, so that, when you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ may be put to shame.
* Hebrews 4:12 For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.
Isaiah 55:10 “For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven and do not return there but water the earth, making it bring forth and sprout, giving seed to the sower and bread to the eater, 11 so shall my word be that goes out from my mouth; it shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it.
** The three general types of pro-gay theology people: 1. “The Bible says homosexuality is wrong but it isn’t the word of God” (obviously non-Christians) 2. “The Bible says it is wrong but God changed his mind and is only telling theological Liberals” (only about 10 things wrong with that) 3. “The Bible is the word of God but you are just misunderstanding it” (Uh, no, not really.)