“Resolution One: I will live for God. Resolution Two: If no one else does, I still will.” - Jonathan Edwards -

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Agent of Change

We interrupt our regularly scheduled posting to bring this breaking news:

Polls Say: Gays Can't Change!. It seems that 56% of the 515 respondents (HUGE poll, isn't it?), believe that gays can't change their orientation.

No news there! But the wrong question is being asked -- it is not "Can Gays Change?", but "Can mankind change?". You see, this is where the Episcopalians and others have missed the boat. By stating that gays cannot/should not change, they are stating clearly their disbelief in the Gospel.

Before anyone jumps up and hollers that I am a homophobe, hear me out; this is not about gays or straights; this is about man and his sin. Gays cannot change, that is no surprise; it is God who does the changing of one's heart. As a matter of fact, not only can gays not change, but neither can adulterers, murderers, pedophiles, liars, and sinners of all ilk (including yours truly).

If we preach that sinners are the architects of their own change, we are doing a tremendous disservice to the Gospel. The proclamation of the Gospel is that Christ has come to deliver us from our sins, that it is the monergistic work of God that creates the change in us. Jesus, in responding to Nicodemus in John 3 says that no one can see the kingdom of God unless they are born-again. Why is it that we are so unfair to the gay community?

We tell these people they must change, yet we claim that it is God who is at work in the change. We cannot have it both ways -- we must pray for the Lord to change the hearts of ANY who are caught up in sin, and in rebellion against Him, not only the gay community, and we must know that it is not 'up to the sinner' to make the change in their heart, or worse, convince them that there is nothing wrong, they are simply 'wounded'. (Oh, how I have come to hate the misuse of this word in the church!)

UPDATE: Dr. David Powlison addresses much of this mindset in today's Gospel presentation. He does a much better job than i ever could.

It all comes down to who is in charge, doesn't it? Is God the agent of change in our life, or are we the captains of our own soul and masters of our destiny?

6 comments:

Even So... said...

Yeah, I had read that article yeasterday, and had been writing on similar stuff, and yep, we ain't what changes us...

Ray said...

I have to say that your writing is so much better than mine; when will we read your thoughts regarding this subject?

Even So... said...

I like your writing...

They were in several sermons, which I will break into posts, but not sure when they will be posted...of course, these type of thoughts have a way of finding their way into my writing a lot...

Steve Sensenig said...

Well said, Ray. Not only does it require that we change the way we address the issue of homosexuality, but it also should give us pause at the idea of telling someone they must change their sexual orientation in order to come to God.

I've talked about this a couple of times in the past on my blog. We must tell people the good news of the Gospel, and let God do the work in their heart to change them.

As you so rightly pointed out, homosexuality is no different in this regard than lying, stealing, gossiping, etc. etc. etc.

Ray said...

I think that if one is regenerated by God, they will feel the conviction....

The problem I have with one side is that they state that the sinner must changed BEFORE coming to Christ -- thereby making man the agent of change.

The other, liberal side, says, don't worry about your sins, you should not feel any conviction -- you are fine just the way you are. Thereby providing a false assurance.

Anyone who comes to Christ will feel conviction -- it will be a series of Isaiah 6 moments. If these are not experienced, then real regeneration is in question.

Anonymous said...

Monergism in a nutshell!!! Great post Ray!

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