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Tony Evans: Churches Can't Avoid Homosexuality Issue

"The Destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah" - John Martin
“The Destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah” – John Martin
As the homosexual lobby continues to make strides toward mocking marriage, demonizing critics, and shutting down dissent, society as a whole will have to deal with it, Christians included. Because deviant behavior has become normalized, and normal behavior is scrutinized, some Christians are reluctant to push back and do what they’re commanded to do: spread the Gospel. Declaring God’s word is judgmental, which has become a slur. People want to avoid controversy because it’s stressful. But Christians, of all people, know it isn’t about our comfort.

The Christian Post published an interview with Pastor Tony Evans, where he stated that the church can’t avoid homosexuality. We can’t “afford to remain silent or compromise on ‘God’s standard about sexuality and the family.'” An excerpt:

CP: What’s your response to critics who say Christians that harp on homosexuality are being hypocritical by appearing cold on other issues, like divorce and adultery?

Evans: I would say to a degree that they are correct. The Bible is clear that sex outside of marriage is sin no matter what the context is, other than the male-female marital relationship. So to skip that and just harp on this one sin, they’re absolutely correct. But, they’re incorrect when they make the repercussions equal. Because the repercussions, or consequences of homosexual sin that leads to homosexual marriage and thus the redefinition of the family, that consequence is greater. While all are sin that’s outside of marriage, all don’t necessarily carry the same consequence, and making that distinction I think helps to deal with the issue a little more pragmatically.

CP: When you speak of “consequences,” are you speaking in terms of everyday life and how we are affected in society and culture, or in terms of how God judges those sins?

Evans: It can be how God judges the sin. For example, there are illnesses and diseases that are more poignantly connected to homosexuality than typically heterosexual relationships, although there can be consequences there, too. We have to leave that with God, because God determines the consequences, we don’t. At the same time, we have to recognize that there are consequences and from our pulpits, proclaim that and proclaim that consistently, not just with this sin but with any sin that violates God’s standard, with the goal of bringing that person out of the sin and into a proper standing with God.

In related news, Dan Haseltine, lead singer of the Christian band Jars of Clay, tweeted that he doesn’t “see a negative effect to allowing gay marriage. No societal breakdown, no war on traditional marriage. ?? Anyone?” Bible-believing Christians responded:

Denver Seminary philosophy professor, theologian and author Douglas Groothuis told WND that “same-sex couples can no more be married than a square can be a circle.”

“To pretend otherwise, is simply sin. To be an influential Christian and to claim otherwise is an especially heinous sin,” he said.
Reformation Bible College Philosophy Department Chairman R.C. Sproul Jr. said that when “leaders in the church go down this path, you can expect many to follow.”

“A day is coming when affirming a biblical sexual ethic will give one all the social cachet of being the grand wizard of the KKK,” he warned. “What we are witnessing is a mad rush by professing Christians to flee that ship. And in so doing, they are fleeing the shame of the cross.”

Haseltine, who professes Christ, didn’t like answers based on God’s word. “Tweeting Scripture verses to settle my questions of gay marriage isn’t helpful. Simple answers to complex questions= meh.” Can you believe a Christian would dismiss scriptural answers?” Fortunately for himself, he backtracked:

“In the heat of discussion, I communicated poorly and thus unintentionally wrote that I did not care about what Scripture said. Thus, the tsunami hit. It was picked up by bloggers and written into editorials before I could blink. And rightly so, people were shocked and offended by my statement dismissing the value of Scripture. I got it. And possibly, I got what that combination of statements warranted for response. I should’ve chosen my words more wisely…I care about what Scripture says. It matters.”

Too late? What we think doesn’t matter. He’ll have to account for it.

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