In 2015 there was an article that came out in The Namibian newspaper, which said that the Dutch Reformed Church in South Africa was embracing homosexuality, and this later became true of the Namibian Dutch Reformed Church. In 2019 a Lutheran pastor called on the Namibian government to legalize homosexuality. For me personally it has become a matter of concern, that the Church in Namibia has come to this point- that sin is being embraced by such two big mainline churches. This is a matter of serious concern and should be addressed. My aim in this article is to show that embracing homosexuality is a very serious problem for the Church. By embracing I mean that the church is accepting those who practice homosexuality as active church members, they are being ordained for ministry either as pastors or elders. That not involving such people in ministry is a discrimination against them and being unloving towards them.
A church that embraces homosexuality embraces sin
There has been a lot of talk about homosexuality, arguing as to whether it is a sin or not. I am not going to go into that. I am aiming to present that which the Bible teaches. The Bible clearly teaches that Homosexuality is a sin. In the Old Testament (Leviticus 18), God gives commands about having unlawful sexual relations. He talks about sexual intercourse with close relatives, with animals, a neighbour’s wife etc. Then he (v.22) talks about relations between male and male and says that it is an abomination. In the New Testament, in Romans 1:24-28, Paul talks about the unnatural relations between man and women, and he presents these as shameless acts. In 1 Corinthians 6:9-10, those who practice homosexuality are considered as unrighteous people, and they will not inherit the Kingdom of God. These are very clear passages that teach that homosexuality is a sin before God and that he hates it and that it provokes his righteous anger. Therefore it is a serious thing, if a church embraces homosexuality, for in doing so such a church embraces sin.
A church that embraces homosexuality is not a Bible-believing Church
Notice these two phrases in Romans 1:18 and 32: “who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth” and, “They know God’s righteous decree”. The people to whom Paul was writing knew that sin is wrong, and they knew God’s truth but they still practiced and approved others who would practice such shameful acts (including homosexuality). As I pointed out earlier, homosexuality is clearly declared a sin in the Bible. Homosexuality, is not a gray issue, it is clear. It is a black and white issue. We can know clearly someone’s general view of the Bible by how they view homosexuality. If you have no issue with homosexuality, and it is not something that you view as sin, when you are fine with it and approve of it, it is because you do not agree with a clear teachings of the Bible. In so doing you not only undermine the authority of the Bible but you also undermine the sufficiency of it. What you are saying is that you agree with the Bible on everything else but you will hold on to your opinion on this matter, irrespective of what the Bible says. That’s what a church that embraces homosexuality does. It says it doesn’t matter what the Bible says on this issue – our opinion is much more important. That is undermining the word of God, and it shows that you do not believe in it’s authority nor it’s sufficiency.
A church that embraces homosexuality is an Apostate Church
This is a very important point. We derive this from Romans 1:18 to the end of the chapter. We see there that the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men. It comes to the point were God gives men over to their lust, to their dishonourable passions (vv.24, 26). Then they go a level deeper at which they not only practice them, but also give approval to those who practice them. People who practice homosexuality are a people who show that they want nothing to do with God. They are a people who have been given over to their sin by God. Such people are apostate. They are people who have left the faith. Sinning in this way shows that you want nothing to do with God. A Church that embraces this kind of sinning, or any sin for that matter, is an apostate Church. There is, of course no sinless church, but a Church that embraces sin (such as homosexuality) is a church that has lost its way. This Church has moved away from God. This is a Church that wants nothing to do with God.
A church that embraces homosexuality is an unloving church
There is often an argument made that Christians are unloving and judgemental towards homosexual people. Naturally we will never win homosexual people for Christ by being harsh with them. We must speak the truth in love to them. However, embracing homosexuality, and affirming people who are living in homosexual relationships is extremely unloving. How can a church allow and even encourage someone that chooses a path that will lead them to Hell? That is the most unloving thing you can do to any human being. If the Church does not tell people the truth about their sinful state and point them to Saviour Jesus Christ, they are an unloving church. Any Church that is not big on preaching the gospel is an unloving church. Homosexuality is a sin that the church should urge people to repent from. The church should not embrace it and tell people that they are fine if they practice it. They should not tell people that God loves them whoever they are, and whatever they do. Homosexuality is a perversion of God’s intended plan for sexuality. Homosexuality is not a biblical identity. Therefore a Church that approves and embraces homosexuality leads people to hell. That is a most unloving thing to do.
A church that embraces homosexuality will face the God’s Judgement
Since Homosexuality is a sin, people who practice such, will individually face God’s Judgement (1 Corinthians 6:9-10). This includes also those who support those who practice these things. Going back to Romans 1:32, we see that God’s wrath is not just upon those who practice these things, such as homosexuality, but also those upon who approve them. A church embraces and approves homosexuality will indeed face the wrath of God. It will be judged. Such a Church will not be exempted from God’s Judgement. If a church doesn’t want to face this Judgement then it should not approve such practices, and should discipline those who persist in it.
A Church that will repents from embracing homosexuality will receive God’s mercy
If the church repents from such views and practice and embraces right Biblical views and practice, it will receive God’s mercy (1 Corinthians 6:11, 1 John 1:9, James 5:16). God will forgive and heal any church that repents from the practice and approval of homosexuality. That is why Jesus came to die on the Cross, so that our sins maybe forgiven and that we may have eternal life. So whatever church you are – if you have embraced such practises, repent and turn to the Lord Jesus Christ for your salvation and restoration. Jesus Christ is your only hope! Run to him today, and submit to the authority of his word and acknowledge it’s sufficiency (in every aspect of life).
We have established that a church that embraces homosexuality, embraces sin, it is not a Bible-believing Church, it is apostate, it is unloving and will face God’s Judgement. But we have also seen that a Church that repents from this will receive God’s mercy. The is a great a thorny issue threatening the church today, so it should be dealt with from the lenses of the Bible and the Gospel.