Al Mohler is Right

June 27, 2011

I wonder, have I stepped into a beehive?  I have yet to get any flack but I wonder if it is coming.  I posted an article on my Facebook page titled: “Let’s Be Honest, A Lot of Christians Are Guilty of Homophobia“.

The article is in defense of the defense Southern Seminary president Albert Mohler gave about comments he made about homosexuality:

The Associated Press quotes Mohler as saying that homosexuality isn’t something that people can “turn on and turn off.” Mohler went on to say that “only the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ gives a homosexual person any hope of release from homosexuality.”

At the SBC Convention earlier this month Mohler was challenged to answer for his comments. His words of defense were:

“I made those statements. They are not alleged statements. I made them.”

According to reports, he then went on to outline how Southern Baptists had been homophobic and had misrepresented homosexuality. Mohler even called the Southern Baptists to repentance on the issue. However, he did all of this while maintaining that homosexuality is a sin that needs a Savior. One report…  said that the convention responded with applause.

On my Facebook post I commented that what Mohler said is also true in my denomination, the PCA, and is true of many Evangelicals.  Shoot, if I am honest with myself, it is probably true of me to some degree.  But the suggestion that some responses to homosexuality are themselves sinful is not tantamount to condoning homosexuality or the Gay Rights Agenda.

I appreciate what the author of the article pondered:

What did Albert Mohler say that was so outrageous? Was it the part about Jesus being the only Savior from sin? Was it the claim that our sinful nature goes beyond a simple choice? Any orthodox Christian should affirm salvation from our sin through Jesus and that we can’t simply decide to turn off our sinful nature.

That’s the thing. What is wrong with what Mohler said?  Is homosexuality merely a “choice”?  No doubt it is a choice in many respects. One can choose to indulge the desire or choose not to indulge the desire, just as with many expressions of sin.  It is this ability to choose that makes nonsense of the assertions that the Gay Agenda is somehow equivalent with the Civil Rights Movement of the Mid-Twentieth Century.  Folk could not choose to be Black of not.  Folks can choose sexual behavior.

However, what Mohler is pointing out is that sin is more than our behavior. However sin is expressed it is first  a condition of the heart and mind.  While choosing to not engage is preferable to hedonistic indulgence. it does not rid anyone of the condition or the consequential penalty. The wages of sin are death… Period.  This is true even if we suppress every inclination.

What Mohler is pointing out is that homosexuality is far more complex than a “choice” to act out on its desires and physical attractions.  He is reminding Christians that we need to recognize the true nature of sin – homosexuality and all types of sin.  And he is challenging us to realize we need a radical remedy. Fortunatley we have one. Mohler also reminds us of the power of the Gospel.

So, will I get any flack for concurring and posting the article supporting Mohler and his views.  Maybe a little.  But probably only from a few.  And hopefully not from anyone who actually takes the time to read the article.

4 Responses to “Al Mohler is Right”

  1. David Says:

    Good post Dennis ! I think for the most part evangelicals have it wrong and it doesn’t matter what denomination either. Most have a condemnation approach to homosexuality.

    It’s easy to condemn and point out sinful behavior of others. We the Church, need to take a more inclusive approach to sinners. Not looking at the kind of sin, but present the Good News and leave lots of room for the Holy Spirit to di His Work.

    That means for me accepting people, and loving on them even if they are active in their sin ( in this case homosexuality).

  2. Bill Says:

    Even if a homosexual person ‘chooses’ to live a loveless, sexless life, they are still going to be homosexual to the day they die.

    How sad and how scary that fellow human beings would literally convict these gay citizens to a life without love and intimacy.

    You are backwards on this issue. Free to believe as you will, of course, yes. But backwards nonetheless.

    It’s odd that I do not see any heterosexuals, christians or otherwise, moving about the country trying to limit their own freedoms and liberties according to biblical law. You only do this type of thing toward a group of citizens whose love you deem immoral, while allowing heterosexuals a ‘free pass

    Yet, Jesus Christ would never in a million years treat gay citizens the way those who purport to follow him do.

    Can you imagine Jesus Christ participating in the public degradation, public dehumanization, and public hostility bordering on violence, toward any sexual minority?

    For I can not ever imagine Jesus Christ doing the things to human beings that these “Family Values” groups participate in.

    Can you, Dennis? Can you imagine Jesus Christ condemning HIS gay children to eternal hell?

    And if so, would you please ask him why he created so many gay people if they are so repulsive to him?

  3. Dennis Griffith Says:

    Bill,

    Thank you for your comment. It is apparent that you have witnessed disheartening expressions of rejection and injustice. Whether it was toward you, or you are just sympathetic, I do not know.

    In one sense you are correct, injustice is never condoned by Jesus. But you also make some unsubstantiated broad stroke accusations. Let me respond to some of these.

    First, you state that I have this issue backwards. What exactly is backwards. Are you suggesting that Al Mohler is wrong? That homosexuality is entirely a matter of choice? That most Evangelical Christians do not demonstrate any hints of homophobia? Those are the points I affirmed in my defense of Al Mohler. So for me to have this issue backward you would have to be making those assertions. But this seems contrary to the implications of your other statements.

    Second, I am not clear how defining marriage as being between one man and one woman, as instituted by God, relegates everyone else to loveless lives. I exprienced love before being married, as I suspect do most people. I know many unmarried people who are not lonely. Can I imagine Jesus calling people to a live of singleness? Absolutely! The Apostle Paul not only speaks to the issue but was a living example. What about the Ethiopian Eunich? Singleness is something Jesus calls some to. But these single believers are neither second class nor less loved by virtue of singleness.

    Third, there seems to be an implication that any opposition to the gay agenda, and particularly being against the legalization of gay marriage, is equivalent to gay bashing. That is a rediculous proposition. Please give specific Biblical support for the institutuon of gay marriage. Now, are heinous crimes committed against homosexuals because of their sexual orientation? Sadly, yes. And heinous crimes are also commited against women because of their gender, against people becuase of their race, against some because of their social status, against some because of their stature… Sin and hatefulness will always find a way to express itself in this fallen world. Yet victims of such crimes cannot be decleared righteous simply because they have been victimized. Righteousness comes only by faith in what Christ has done accompanied by repentance of our sinfulness.

    Finally, you ask: “Would Jesus condemn his gay children to eternal hell?” Short answer is that those who are God’s children will not be condemned to hell. Jesus took the punishment for all who trust in him and what he accomplished on the cross. But the Bible does not teach that everyone is God’s child – only those who belong to Christ. Those who are God’s children, through faith in Christ, and who struggle with homosexuality, or any other sin, are not condemned because Jesus was condemned in our place. But those who wrestle with homosexuality but deny the sinfulness of it are not trusting in Christ. According to such logic there is no need to trust in Christ because there is nothing wrong with this. This is, in effect, to call God a liar, because he has said quite clearly that this is not the way things are to be. (Again, before someone infers that this is a homophobic statement, the same principle applies to all expressions of sin, including all those I wrestle with. I only single out homosexuality here because it is the issue you raised.) So in short, it is not the temptations or even the indulgence in homosexual activity that condemns anyone, but the denial of Christ crucified for our sin.

    Bill, along with this I think one of the unsubstantiated assertions you make is that God “made” people homosexual. I don’t think you can support that statement Biblically. As I suggested in the post, the issue is more complex than merely “choice”. No doubt much popular psychologcial data that supports your view. But for an honest discussion you will have to offer more than an opinion – though you, too, are entitled to have one, and to share in your comments on this blog.

    I look forward to reading any response you may care to offer. I hope you are interested in a dialogue, and that your comment was not merely a drive-by attempt to label me a homophobe. Time will tell,

    Again, thanks for your comment.

  4. Dennis Griffith Says:

    Here is an interesting article from USA Today related to Al Mohler’s remarks and Bill’s comment on this post: Does It Matter If Only 1.4% of People Are Gay? http://www.usatoday.com/news/opinion/forum/2011-05-23-Sex-survey-revelations-on-gay-identity_n.htm


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