Some thoughts and questions on the raging debate as to our correct Christian position as it relates to the LGBT community. First to point out that the most recent and credible statistics show that 96.6% of all Americans identify themselves as straight. In a 2014 National Health Statistics Report available on the CDC site, it additionally lists 1.7 percent as lesbian or gay (the L and G), 0.7% as bisexual (the B) and 1.1% something else or don't want to tell. This last grouping would be where the transgenders fall (the T from the LGBT). It is important that we realize that the sum total of this community plus any other sexual grouping only amounts to 3.4% of the population. They may be in 20% of the national discussion but very limited in actual total percentage. This does not make them any less important but is an appropriate reality check. These numbers represent a significant drop from the first survey on homosexuality in America done in the early 1900's, where it showed around 5%. This too is important. Homosexuality is not increasing only the reporting on homosexuality. Furthermore it is significantly less practiced than in Jesus' day and immensely less common than in the years before Jesus when the Greek culture dominated and homosexuality and bisexuality was almost rote. If God were going to destroy a city, a nation or a culture for their abominable sexual sins He has surely missed out on a much more evil day. This a good time to remind us that Sodom and Gomorrah were not destroyed for their homosexuality but for the lack of ten righteous people in the city. Sometimes we forget the Biblical narrative. All my preceding points are important as we move forward because it brings in the dynamic of perspective that is generally absent from present day discussions. To review:
1) Only a maximum of 3.4% of the population of the USA fits in the LGBT category.
2) This represents not an increase but a significant decrease from recent and ancient history.
3) God destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah for lack of ten righteous people in the city.
I believe that we have almost lost our way in the present discussion on this topic because we have lost clarity on what is most important. As Christians we have been a bit schizophrenic not knowing if it is more important to be the prophetic voice that tells the world their sins or if we are to be the carriers of unconditional love. By and large this reflects our personal perspectives of God. Those that believe it's all about sin will tend to be the aggressive ones on the anti-homosexual crusade and those that experience Him primarily as love will tend to be the ones called soft on homosexuality. The ones who are in the sin-awareness camp will almost without exception give scriptures and examples from the Old Testament, whereas those who feel that love is the central message will refer to the New Testament. There is a clue even there as to who is better representing the heart of God. I believe that the example of Jesus Himself serves us best. Even in that there can be controversy. Some will say, Jesus was not soft on sin, even when it was unpopular to do so He pointed out sin. Yes and no, on this. The specific sin and sins He was relentless about was the sins of the religious leaders. If you were a Pharisee, a Scribe or a Priest you might very likely get your sin pointed out. He went after religiosity, spiritual pride and judging. He called the religious leaders "white-walled sepulchers" and "vipers". He did not call loose women "whores" nor did He call homosexuals "faggots". He Himself, was accused of being a friend of sinners. He hung out with drunks and the sexual sinners. Never did He feel the need to make known His position on homosexuality- though homosexuality was more rampant then than it is today. Nowhere did He address the debauchery of prostitutes and in fact a former prostitute became one of His greatest followers. When we have Jesus confronted by the religious crowd on the sexual sin of a woman caught in adultery (perhaps another prostitute), He does not take advantage of the moment to preach on sexual purity and how sexual sins are bringing judgment on the land. Instead He chases off all her accusers and tells the woman He has no condemnation for her either- despite the fact that He is God and Mr.Holiness Himself. How can He not have condemnation for her when she hasn't even repented?! Chew on that a while. He doesn't even tell her to "go and sin no more" until all accusers have been vanquished. He doesn't want any of the sexual police feeling self-righteous or vindicated for making a public show of her. Yes, it is quite clear Jesus is not for sexual sins. However, it is also clear that He did not like having public stances on them or their sins and in fact must have dealt with all of those matters privately as He did not do so publicly. What would be so wrong in us following Jesus clear pattern of life and conduct? What if we just abandoned the fight of trying to publicly stop a tiny percentage of the 1.7% from getting married? Are our Biblical heterosexual marriages really so fragile that we lose the institution of marriage if homosexuals are permitted to get married? Are we maybe guilty of massive scapegoating -blaming a tiny percentage of the population for the breaking down of the family? What about the very public moral failings of recent pastors, TV ministers and Christian leaders? I would mention their names but don't wish to shame them in that way. Is it not infinitely more damaging to families when these leaders have affairs and divorce- than the sum total of what all the LGBT community does to affect a nations moral fiber? What about the 50% divorce rate of heterosexual Christian couples? Is that perhaps more affecting the health of American families than " the radical gay agenda"? Can we just put down our accusing finger long enough to get at least one year of proper sexual behaving from our major Christian leaders under our belt before we lift the pointed finger back towards society and her sexual sins? Or is maybe the pointed finger a wrong idea all together? Is God perhaps less interested in our ability to point out to society her sins and more interested in us becoming known for our love? What if we actually believed the Holy Spirit could do the convicting of sins even if we were overly silent on the matter? Is your Holy Spirit big enough to do that or does He need your implicit help? Once we correctly answer these questions we perhaps can once again begin to reflect Papa's heart and passion for society. May this all come sooner than later.