#18-Homosexuality

 
 

Concerning
Homosexuality

Copyright 2013
International Church Council Project
Articles of Affirmation & Denial

(Topic 18)

Article I
We affirm that Scripture describes homosexuality, in thought1 or behavior,2 as sin.
We deny that Scripture’s discussion of homosexuality is culture-specific,3 or relevant only to non-committed or “unnatural” homosexual relationships.*

  1. Matthew 5:27-28
  2. Genesis 18:20-21; 19:5-7, 13, 24-28; Leviticus 18:22-24; 20:13-16; Judges 19:22; 1 Kings 14:24; Romans 1:24-32; 1 Cor. 6:9-11; 1 Tim. 1:8-11; Jude 1:7
  3. Psalm 119:89; Matthew 5:18-19; Isaiah 8:20

Article II
We affirm that the Holy Spirit empowers homosexuals to change,1 meaning that, by the grace of Christ, those who were homosexual can learn holy love2 for both men and women. We further affirm that sanctification in Christlikeness is progressive3 and all Christians struggle against their inherent sinful nature until they reach heaven.4
We deny that a person is truly converted to Christ if he or she continues on in any homosexual practice.5

  1. 1 Cor. 6:9-11
  2. Romans 13:8-10
  3. Hebrews 12:14; 2 Peter 3:18; Hebrews 5:12-6:1; 1 Thes. 4:2-8
  4. Galatians 5:5; 5:16-6:9; Romans 6:12-23; Psalm 17:15; Psalm 51:1-19
  5. 1 Cor. 6:9-11; Matthew 16:24-27; Leviticus 20:13-16; Romans 6:23

Article III
We affirm that spiritual change affects the whole person:1 behavior, imagination, motives, beliefs, and affections.2
We deny that spiritual change targets behavior alone.3

  1. John 3:3
  2. Ephes. 4:17-5:12; Col. 3:5-14
  3. Hebrews 10:16; Jeremiah 32:38-40; 31:33-34; Titus 1:15-16

Article IV
We affirm that, like any sin, homosexuality can be influenced by innumerable factors, such as biology,1 early homosexual molestation,2 cultural values,3 opportunities for homosexual experimentation.4 However, those who are homosexual are so because they have made decisions to be homosexual.5
We deny that homosexuality is ultimately caused by biology or life circumstances. We also deny that homosexuality is something other than a moral choice.6

  1. Leviticus 21:18-21
  2. Ezekiel 20:18-19; Exodus 20:5-6; Numbers 14:18; Deut. 5:9-10
  3. 1 Kings 14:24; 2 Kings 16:3; 21:2
  4. Galatians 5:13; 1 Cor. 15:33; Proverbs 13:20
  5. Romans 1:24-32; Leviticus 20:13
  6. Leviticus 20:13; 1 Cor. 6:9-11

Article V
We affirm that we should devote as much attention to how we speak with love and grace to homosexuals as to what we speak.1
We deny that the clear teachings of Scripture on homosexuality must be muted in order to reach homosexuals in a compassionate manner.2

  1. Proverbs 22:11; Proverbs 19:22; Col. 4:5-6
  2. Zech. 8:16; John 8:45; Ephes. 4:15

Article VI
We affirm that the preaching of the doctrines of grace and the fervent worship of the Triune God should attract homosexuals to the church,1 that they might learn to trust, worship and obey Jesus Christ,2
We deny that homosexuals who claim to be believers in Jesus Christ, and who are committed to practice their homosexual behavior, should be allowed to continue as communicant members of the church of Christ,3

  1. 2 Cor. 2:14-17; Acts 2:46-47; Psalm 22:27
  2. 1 Peter 1:2; Romans 1:5; Ephesians 4:20-24
  3. 1 Cor. 5:9-13; 2 Cor. 6:14; Ephes. 5:11; 2 Thes. 3:6

Article VII
We affirm that the Bible teaches that practicing homosexuals will not inherit the Kingdom of God.1
We deny that the Bible offers any hope of salvation to an unrepentant, practicing homosexual.2 We further deny that one who is a practicing homosexual is following Jesus Christ, or that such a one may properly be called Christian.3

  1. 1 Cor. 6:9
  2. 1 Cor. 6:9
  3. Matthew 16:24-27; Acts 11:26; Lev. 20:13 with Matthew 5:17-19

Article VIII
We affirm that repentant homosexuals who, recognizing the reality of their sin, call upon Jesus Christ for his salvation, leaving off homosexual practices, and become born again, are saved from eternal judgment, including judgment for homosexual sin, and may confidently expect to spend eternity with God and his saints in Heaven.1
We deny that practicing homosexuals have any biblical reason to suppose they are born again, or that they will not be condemned for their sins, or that they have any reason to expect to spend eternity with God, but may only reasonably expect to spend eternity in hell, separated from God and his saints who are in Heaven.2

  1. 1 Cor. 6:9-11
  2. Rev. 22:14-15; 1 Cor. 6:9-11

Article IX
We affirm that the Gospel of Jesus Christ holds promise of eternal life for all repentant homosexuals.1
We deny that there is no hope for homosexuals, or that homosexuals cannot be forgiven if they are repentant and leave off homosexual practices.2

  1. 1 Tim. 1:15-16; Mark 2:17; Luke 15:2; 19:10; Acts 2:40-41
  2. Romans 10:13; 1 Tim. 1:15-16

Article X
We affirm that God has called heterosexual men and women into leadership in Christ’s Church.1
We deny that a practicing homosexual may be a pastor, a teacher, or hold any other office of service in Christ’s Church,2 or be a communicate member.3

  1. 1 Tim. 3:2-10; Titus 1:5-9; Genesis 1:27
  2. 1 Tim. 3:2-10; Titus 1:5-9; Deut. 17:14-15
  1. 1 Cor. 5:1-13; 2 Cor. 6:14; Ephes. 5:3-12; 2 Thes. 3:6; Rev. 22:15

Article XI
We affirm that Christians and Christian churches ought to eagerly share Christ’s love for the homosexual, urging them to repent and be washed from their sins by the blood of Jesus Christ.1
We deny that Christians ought to hate or reject homosexuals,2 or that Christians ought to ignore homosexual sin as if it were a sin not needing repentance.3

  1. Mark 16:15-16; 2 Cor. 5:19-6:2; Ephes. 1:7-8; 1 Peter 1:2
  2. Luke 6:36; 1 Cor. 6:11; Ephes. 5:1-2
  3. 1 Cor. 5:1-7; Romans 13:12; 2 Cor. 6:16-7:1

*It is our general understanding from Scripture that all of Scripture’s condemnation of fornication would apply directly to homosexual sex as well. And it is apparent that Scripture looks at homosexual sex not only as sin deserving judgment, but also sees it as particularly perverted, unnatural, detestable, and “an abomination” (Lev. 18:22).

 

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