…. they were unschooled, ordinary men …. they had been with Jesus …. the crippled man healed standing with them – Acts 4:13,14
Lately, LGBT issues seem to pop up in conversations.
How do Christians respond in a Christ-like way?
Dr Richard C. Halverson, former chaplain of the United States Senate wrote,
Through the years as a pastor of four churches (in Missouri, California and Maryland), it was my responsibility (and privilege) to minister to those who were homosexual.
Based on my experience, let me share how I would respond to a child of mine who discovered that he/she was homosexual …
First and most importantly, I would not cease loving them, or love them less than before they shared their situation with me.
As a matter of fact I would love them more than ever, if that were possible.
They would have my hearing — as often and as long as they wanted to discuss the matter with me.
I would do my best not to be judgmental!
I would not treat them as ‘queer’ or whatever other designation is a ‘put down’.
I would do all I could to persuade them to be chaste (just as I would a heterosexual child before marraige).
I would remind them with all the wisdom God gives me, that He loves them that He understands them, that His love is unconditional and everlasting.
I would urge their total commitment to Jesus Christ, that He might change them — as He transformed my life from a pleasure loving playboy, and as He transformed many others to be His obedient servants — to conform to His perfect plan for their lives.
I would do all in my power — and with love — to try and dissuade them from adopting a homosexual lifestyle.
I would remind them that Christ created them for Himself, and they could become themselves, only as they gave themselves to Him that He might rule in their bodies (Colossians 1:16, 27-29, 2:9-10, Romans 12:1-2)
“… know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit
…” (1 Corinthians 6:19).
Grace and Peace,
Richard C. Halverson
Source: Letter published in Perspective, June 9, 1993.
Bob Briner, Deadly Detours, Seven noble causes that keep Christians from changing the world, Zondervan, 1996, pg 40,50.
In 2012, a large restaurant chain in the US, Chik-fil-A was caught in a controversy over LGBT issues, that drew protests at restaurants & campuses, and responses from the mayors of Boston and Chicago.
From this episode, Shane Windmeyer of Campus Pride wrote an honest and open article on how Dan Truetty, COO of Chik-fil-A reached out in friendship to Windmeyer. Their friendship helped dispel Windmeyer’s concerns about Chik-fil-A’s beliefs.
Dan and Me: My Coming Out as a Friend of Dan Cathy and Chick-fil-A (click here, Huffington Post)by Shane Windmeyer (really worth reading)
Dan Truett’s humble response in building bridges of understanding, respect and friendship is exemplary of a follower of Jesus.
John 8:4,5,7, 10,11 (NKJV)
4 they said to Jesus, “Teacher, this woman was caught in adultery, in the very act. 5 Now Moses, in the law, commanded us that such should be stoned. But what do You say?”
7 So when they continued asking Him, He raised Himself up and said to them,
“He who is without sin among you,
let him throw a stone at her first.”
9 Then those who heard it,being convicted by their conscience, went out one by one, beginning with the oldest even to the last. And Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst.
10 When Jesus had raised Himself up and saw no one but the woman, He said to her,
“Woman, where are those accusers of yours?
Has no one condemned you?”
11 She said, “No one, Lord.”
And Jesus said to her,
“Neither do I condemn you; go and sin no more.”
While others may say, “Change first … then, … come & join us.”
for us all
… we first came to Jesus
… ‘just as I am’,
He changed us with His love,
to be more like Him.
Apostle Paul writing about God’s great mercy and grace extended to him,
1 Timothy 1:13-17 (NLT)
13 even though I used to blaspheme the name of Christ.
In my insolence, I persecuted his people.
But God had mercy on me because I did it in ignorance and unbelief.
14 Oh, how generous and gracious our Lord was! He filled me with the faith and love that come from Christ Jesus.
15 This is a trustworthy saying, and everyone should accept it:
“Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners”
—and I am the worst of them all.
16 But God had mercy on me so that Christ Jesus could use me as a prime example of his great patience with even the worst sinners.
Then others will realize that they, too, can believe in him and receive eternal life.
17 All honor and glory to God forever and ever!
Matthew 9:10-13 (NIV)
10 While Jesus was having dinner at Matthew’s house, many tax collectors and sinners came and ate with him and his disciples. 11 When the Pharisees saw this, they asked his disciples,
“Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?”
12 On hearing this, Jesus said, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. 13 But go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice.’
For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.”
Retiring Senate Chaplain won fame with humility (click here) , an article on Richard Halverson
by 林弟兄, bro Lim
June 28, 2015
Copyright © 林弟兄 bro Lim, Laymanointing, 2014-2016 – All Rights Reserved
Creative Commons License