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Chip Ingram is a pastor in California.  He has a daily radio show called Living on the Edge.  Last week I was listening to the broadcast as he addressed the question: Why do so many young people leave the Church?  Statistics suggest that around seventy percent of those raised in the Church leave the faith by the end of college.  Chip gave this example as one explanation why: He was talking with a teen from his church.  She firmly professed to believe in Christ.  But, she said, “If you ask me to tell my gay friend she’s wrong, I’ll walk away from my faith first!”

This is a huge reason so many have abandoned their faith.  They reason that any God who would condemn a person for being gay—even though He created them this way—isn’t a God they can believe in.  This is a great instinct!  They’re right on target.  They get that a God who doesn’t love gay people just as much as everyone else, who doesn’t regard ALL people with equal dignity, can’t be loving, can’t be the true God.

One weekend, the Church my wife and I went to years ago had a group of “Christians” from another state come and protest at all the services.  They stood outside with big signs that read: God Hates Gays!

This ISN’T Christianity!  It’s the furthest thing from it!  Over the two thousand years of its existence, the most fundamental teaching of the faith is that God is love—God doesn’t hate anyone! 

However, many in our culture perceive Christianity this way.  And to our shame, many Christians, like these protestors, have fueled this perception by doing despicable things that target and marginalize gay people. 

This great instinct young people have about equality, about God’s love, has so thoroughly permeated our culture that we forget what a radical innovation it is; we forget where we got it from.  It hasn’t been self-evident to every culture through history.  Far from it.  Simply put, from the Greco-Roman household codes in the West to the Caste System of the East, it has been—and, in some parts of the world today, continues to be—assumed that different people possess very unequal worth. 

It took Christianity to introduce the idea of the inalienable dignity of every human being.  It took Christianity for people to believe that God loves every single person equally.  It took Christianity to say that we are all sinners, equally in need of salvation and equally the focus of His prodigal grace.

Yes, Christianity teaches that homosexual behavior—among many other things we ALL do or fail to do—is sinful.  But it never teaches that God doesn’t love gay people, or that He loves them any less.  If you doubt this, I challenge you to read the Gospels.  You’ll be struck by how radically inclusive Jesus is; how He goes out of his way to include the MOST marginalized.

It couldn’t be any clearer that the God of Jesus Christ accepts and loves ALL people—whether they accept and love Him and the eternal life a relationship with Him involves is a different question.  But that’s the only way He is exclusive, and it’s entirely up to us.  It depends entirely on our response to His radically inclusive love!

So what do you think about homosexuality and Christianity?  Let me know by leaving your comments on the “Contact E.J.” page of the Raising Jesus website.  And thank you for all your support!  If you haven’t yet, please “Like” our Facebook page and subscribe to our YouTube channel.

About Me

E.J. Sweeney is a true skeptic. He needs to see to believe. Hard Evidence. Compelling Proof. Solid Logic. This is what he believes in. In college, he encountered questions that the superficial faith he was raised on couldn’t handle. So he began a quest for Truth, a quest for the answers to life’s ultimate questions.

EJ Sweeney

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