letters to  surfers

Homosexuality is sin.  Why don't you call a spade a spade?

Answer by Robert Brow    (www.brow.on.ca)    June 2000

In my preaching I do not preach sin as a list of things to be condemned with a view to making sinners feel guilty. I view sin as all that needs to be changed in us by the Holy Spirit to perfect us for the perfect love of heaven. And we all change in different ways and in a different sequence. That is also true of young people, and sometimes older people, who discover to their horror that they have same-sex sexual feelings.

What to do about it?  Let us take an ordinary heterosexual couple and a same sex (man and man or woman and woman) couple attending my church. For a start I do not want to probe and inquire what each couple does by way of sexual intimacy. What I work and pray for is that the Holy Spirit will touch both, and fill them with the fruit of the Spirit. As this happens, changes will certainly occur, but they might not be in the sequence that I would expect..

As that happens I do not want to interfere in what the Spirit is doing by a heavy legalistic approach. Individuals who are into sleeping around, adultery, and same sex cruising, usually seem to change very quickly into a longing for a loving committed relationship. I have seen individuals who have been bothered by sexual feelings for the same sex (crushes are very common among young women in their teens) being freed to love and eventually get happily married to someone of the opposite sex.

I have not seen long term same-sex couples breaking up as a result of the Spirit's work in their life. In fact my wife Mollie and I have known three couples, each of whom has a son who has shared a home with a male friend for many years. At first it was very traumatic for them, but I recommended they keeping loving their sons, and praying that the Holy Spirit would perfect them in love. In each case the son has remained part of their family, and has turned out to be a very devoted loving support to
them as they get older.

What I find obnoxious is Christian preaching which deals with people by categories, in this case the bashing of gays and lesbians as a group, rather than seeing what the Spirit is doing very personally in each person's life. But I have no hesitation in recommending the intervention of the police in cases where there is criminal activity such as heterosexual or same-sex abuse of children (there was a case here in Kingston when a brilliant organist abused the choir boys, and had to be sent to jail).

I am sure I have not fully answered the question from your point of view, and we would need to sit down and discuss case after case of people we know and love. As I said, when couples have a son or daughter who turns out to have a same-sex preference, they could throw them out and never speak to them again. The alternative is that their own point of view changes, and that of their child, as the Spirit works in the situation. We may have to assign consequences, but writing people off because of their behavior is never a Christian solution.

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