A letter to the Christian church, from a follower of Christ.
If you read my blog, you know I’m a Christian. I am a passionate follower of Jesus Christ. He is my everything. I live my life for Him, because He gave His life for me. It’s simple, really. He loves me passionately, so I love Him passionately.
What’s crazy is that God loves me no matter what.
He loves YOU no matter what.
He’s not always happy with the choices we make, but He still loves us. If you’re a parent this concept isn’t difficult to grasp. We will always love our kids, but we won’t always be happy with the choices they make. I find understanding God is a lot simpler when I view him as a parent.
Jesus came to save the lost. He pursues us as we are… broken, hurting, sinful people. Once we turn to Him, he begins a new work in us. Thankfully, we don’t have to clean up our mess before we can come to Christ. We come to Christ, GIVE Him our mess, and he turns it into something beautiful. We become new creations in Christ. Why would I expect anyone to clean up their act BEFORE coming to Christ? That’s backwards.
Church, let me ask you a question, “Are you trying to pick a speck out of your brother’s eye, while you have a plank in your own eye?” Look at these verses in 1 Corinthians 5:9-11
When I wrote to you before, I told you not to associate with people who indulge in sexual sin. 10 But I wasn’t talking about unbelievers who indulge in sexual sin, or are greedy, or cheat people, or worship idols. You would have to leave this world to avoid people like that. 11 I meant that you are not to associate with anyone who claims to be a believer yet indulges in sexual sin, or is greedy, or worships idols, or is abusive, or is a drunkard, or cheats people. Don’t even eat with such people. (NLT, emphasis mine)
The church is full of people who are committing all sorts of sin, sexual or otherwise, but we’ve come to accept these sins as excusable. We can relate to the difficulty of saving sex for marriage. We can understand being in a loveless marriage where you are undervalued and unappreciated, so we can’t blame you for going elsewhere to find the love and attention you crave. Or money! We all love money and nice things, so let’s spend, spend, spend until we’ve created idols out of STUFF. Now, however, we are confronted with a sin that a majority of us CAN’T relate to, and we are waving the red flag and pointing out the speck in our gay brother’s eye while we ignore the plank in our own!
Come on, Church! When will you see that it is love that draws people to Christ? Not condemnation! We are casting stones at those Christ has called us to love!
When Jesus Christ walked this earth he was mocked by the religious leaders for eating with sinners. His response was, “Healthy people don’t need a doctor—sick people do. I have come to call not those who think they are righteous, but those who know they are sinners.”
Are you being Jesus in this earth? Are you the one sitting at the table with the sinners, or are you the pompous religious leaders mocking the Son of God?
Dear God, please forgive us.
The doors of the church should absolutely be open to homosexuals. But this is a double-edged sword. If somebody claims to be a believer yet continues to live a homosexual lifestyle and believes it to be acceptable, then the Bible clearly says we are not to associate with them. The same goes for those who claim to be believers and have sex outside of marriage, cheat people, or are alcoholics. We shouldn’t associate with those people either. May we NOT be found living by a double standard!
Stay with me here… Please hear my heart. Anybody who asks Jesus into their life WILL BE CHANGED. If you don’t see evidence of a change, then I would question if that person has truly made Jesus the Lord of his or her life.
We all struggle with relinquishing control of our lives. We all struggle with temptations, sexual or otherwise, but if a person truly gives their life to Christ, he will desire the things of God. And I think that is what this scripture really means. It means do not spend time with anyone who claims to be a believer, but doesn’t act like it. We call those people hypocrites. (Lord knows the world loves to point out those in the church!) But we should be spending time with unbelievers too and inviting them into our churches. How else will they come to know Jesus? The real Jesus. The Jesus who ate with sinners and corrupt tax collectors.
The beauty of Jesus is that he pours out love unconditionally. The ugliness of sin is that it draws us away from Jesus. Whether that sin is homosexuality or judging those Christ calls us to love.
“Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.
“Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.”
Matthew 7:1-5 (NIV)