HOW THE LORD YESHUA RECEIVES THE HOMOSEXUALS
The biggest controversy of The Lord Yeshua during His time on earth was His non-judgmental mindset. This has become the great divide between Him and the moralist guardians of the Jewish faith. Unfortunately, this contrast between the outlook of The Christ and those who are judgmental people continue even to the present time as it extends to the groups of people who claim to believe in Him. And the reason is because, although they claim to believe in The Savior, they also adhere to the laws and commandments of the Old Scriptures and to the judgmental teachings of Paul, the New Testament writer, who continued to cling to his Pharisaic outlook (Acts 23:6) even as he was already preaching about The Christ Yeshua.
Christ-believing homosexuals are torn between their love of Christ and the guilt associated with their nature, as they are commonly judged as sinners by their own Christian faith. Here are the common Bible verses cited by those who judge homosexuals as sinners and an abomination before God:
OLD TESTAMENT VERSES ON HOMOSEXUALITY
(Leviticus 18:22 NIV)
22 “‘Do not have sexual relations with a man as one does with a woman; that is detestable.
13 “‘If a man has sexual relations with a man as one does with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable. They are to be put to death; their blood will be on their own heads.
PAUL’S OUTLOOK ON HOMOSEXUALITY
(1 Corinthians 6:9-11 NIV)
9 Or do you not know that wrongdoers will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor men who have sex with men
10 nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.
11 And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.
(Romans 1:26-28 NIV)
26 Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones.
27 In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.
28 Furthermore, just as they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, so God gave them over to a depraved mind, so that they do what ought not to be done.
(1 Timothy 1:8-11 NIV)
8 We know that the law is good if one uses it properly.
9 We also know that the law is made not for the righteous but for lawbreakers and rebels, the ungodly and sinful, the unholy and irreligious, for those who kill their fathers or mothers, for murderers,
10 for the sexually immoral, for those practicing homosexuality, for slave traders and liars and perjurers—and for whatever else is contrary to the sound doctrine
11 that conforms to the gospel concerning the glory of the blessed God, which he entrusted to me.
These are the common verses that mention about homosexuality. And because they are written in our present-day Bible, preachers of almost all church groups and most Christ-professing individuals, think of it as their duty to God to correct them of their supposed sinful actions, but not without condemning them first.
THE NEW WINE – THE TEACHINGS OF THE CHRIST
Is it already justifiable to judge or condemn someone because it is written in the Old Testament? No, it is not! In fact, The Lord Yeshua wants us to not anymore depend on the teachings of the old commandments but rather on His teachings only, and here’s how:
"Then they said to Him, “Why do the disciples of John fast often and make prayers, and likewise those of the Pharisees, but Yours eat and drink?” ...
Then He spoke a parable to them: “No one puts a piece from a new garment on an old one; otherwise the new makes a tear, and also the piece that was taken out of the new does not match the old. And no one puts new wine into old wineskins; or else the new wine will burst the wineskins and be spilled, and the wineskins will be ruined. But new wine must be put into new wineskins, and both are preserved. And no one, having drunk old wine, immediately desires new; for he says, ‘The old is better.’”
The Lord Yeshua addressed this parable to the Jews who questioned and compared His ways to those of John the Baptist's and the Pharisees. The Jews then could not accept what seems for them are radical thoughts and unorthodox ways of teaching which were different than what they are accustomed to. Since the beginning of The Lord's ministry on earth, the unbelieving Jews did their best in trying to compare His teachings to that of the commandments of Moses and the prophets.
In this parable, The Lord Yeshua compares His teachings and ways to that of a new garment and a new wine - a new garment shall not be used to patch a tear from an old clothing, nor new wine be stored into old wineskins. Doing such would not be very effective as the unshrunk garment will only make a tear, in the same way that the new wine, as it still continues to ferment and expand, will burst the old wineskins and the wine be spilled. For the new wine to be enjoyed it has to be stored into new wineskins. The old garment and old wine very well represent the old teachings and commandments that were upheld by the Jews then and even at present time.
The wineskins or 'vessels' are the people who receive the new wine or non-judgmental teachings of The Christ. In the context of this parable, a new wineskin is a vessel of Christ's mindset and teachings. In order for one to benefit from the non-judgmental teachings of Christ, he must be renewed as a vessel or wineskin - he needs to be changed from having a judgmental outlook to a having a non-judgmental outlook.
(For our complete blog on The New Wine Parable please click: https://www.spiritualhouse.info/single-post/New-Garment-New-Wine/New-Garment-New-Wine)
How about the written outlook of Paul concerning homosexuality? Can anyone refer to them in order to judge or condemn those who are homosexuals? No they cannot as the teaching of The Christ supersedes anybody else's teaching or inclination:
37 “Judge not, and you shall not be judged. Condemn not, and you shall not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven.
The Christ prohibits us to judge anybody and this is non-negotiable! What then should we do with the teaching of Paul condemning the people who are such? We should reject it as The Savior did not endorse such a mix-match of the old judgmental outlook with His non-judgmental mindset - Paul's condemning stance became a classic example of this:
52 Then He said to them, “Therefore every scribe instructed concerning the kingdom of heaven is like a householder who brings out of his treasure things new and old.”
THE TEACHINGS OF THE SAVIOR
How do the teachings of The Christ, being the new wine that all should now receive, become distinct from the commandments and laws of old? On what is it based on?
35 Then one of them, a lawyer, asked Him a question, testing Him, and saying, 36 “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the law?”
37 Jesus said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the first and great commandment.39 And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets.”
The Christ renewed the commandments of old, from many He renewed and integrated them into two, and then reissued them as His own. These commandments are based on love, His love that He wants us to live by:
9 “As the Father loved Me, I also have loved you; abide in My love. 10 If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love.
How is the love of The Lord Yeshua evidenced in the life of one who truly abides in His love? The one who truly lives the love and teaching of The Savior will never judge anyone, for The Savior Himself judges no one:
15 You judge according to the flesh; I judge no one.
47 And if anyone hears My words and does not believe, I do not judge him; for I did not come to judge the world but to save the world. 48 He who rejects Me, and does not receive My words, has that which judges him—the word that I have spoken will judge him in the last day.
If The Savior himself does not judge anyone, who are we to judge and condemn our fellow man? This testimony of The Lord further disprove the judgmental teaching of Paul towards those whom He counted as sinners. And if one will only obey The Lord’s primary instruction of not judging anyone, then no one should even be interested in investigating about other people’s lives, more so his or her gender orientation and sexual preference!
Those who end up judging someone for being homosexual has truly become a hypocrite based on the very same old commandments that he, knowingly or unknowingly, referenced with. Let us revisit the Old Testament’s teaching on homosexuality and see how the same commandments turn one who condemns homosexuals, a hypocrite:
(Leviticus 20:13, 18)
13 “‘If a man has sexual relations with a man as one does with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable. They are to be put to death; their blood will be on their own heads…
18 “‘If a man has sexual relations with a woman during her monthly period, he has exposed the source of her flow, and she has also uncovered it. Both of them are to be cut off from their people.
The same set of commandments that covered homosexuality also covered the prohibition to have intercourse when a woman has her menstrual cycle. Why is it that no one from among all churches seem to care about this other commandment when they belong to the same set of commandments given by Moses? Is this not hypocritical and prejudicial that people condemn the homosexuals but not those who have intercourse during a woman’s menstrual cycle? Did not The Lord Yeshua-Christos speak a great deal against the hypocrites? And is there really a difference between a hypocritical scribe and Pharisee in the time of Christ’s earthly residence and a hypocritical Christian in our time? I hope the answer is clear to all.
HOW THE SAVIOR WELCOMES EVEN THE HOMOSEXUALS
How does The Savior receive people? For starters, He broke down barriers for salvation instituted by the very judgmental commandments of old and opened up the door for salvation very wide that those who believe and follow Him will surely get the chance to enter:
9 I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture.
37 All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will by no means cast out.
When The Christ mentioned that anyone who enters or comes to Him will be saved and not be cast out, does He include those whom the old commandments condemned?
12 When Jesus heard that, He said to them, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. 13 But go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy and not sacrifice.’ For I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance.”
That Christ only desires mercy and not sacrifice only shows how He has made irrelevant for salvation any and all of our efforts toward perfect obedience of the old commandments. In the same spirit, He clarified how He called towards repentance all sinners who believe in Him – NOT to holiness! How so? It is because the mindset of 'becoming holy' is very misleading as it is impossibly achievable and will only lead one back to being judgmental and eventually of becoming a hypocrite, as is the case of most, if not all, of the world’s Christianity. (Please read this related article on sin: https://www.spiritualhouse.info/sin-no-more)
Therefore, when The Christ offered the opportunity for salvation He offered it for anyone to enter (Jn. 10:9) and come to Him (Jn. 6:37). In essence He broke down all the barriers instituted by the very judgmental commandments of old – the barriers of origins (whence before salvation is only to the Jews), socio-political-legal backgrounds (proven by saving the other crucified individual), and even gender preference. The bottom line is that if we don’t condemn any person, we will not be bothered by who they are nor of their preferences!
THE SEXUALLY IMMORAL WHO WILL NOT BE SAVED
Those who are bothered by other people’s preference like that of the homosexuals will bring their last card on the table, that is, the mention of ‘sexual immorality’ on some verses. Let us quote Apostle John in his mention of this sinful act:
8 But the cowardly, unbelieving, abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.”
Who are the sexually immoral people who will have their part in the lake of fire?
27 “You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ 28 But I say to you that whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart.
Most of men (if not all), by nature, lust at a woman and thus have already committed adultery - we are then sexually immoral before The Christ. In fact, the Gospel according to Philip (a Gnostic Gospel) backed this up in stating that "it is what they want that makes them wicked, and leads them astray, even if they do nothing" (page 68, plate 114). For this reason alone one needs to believe in the grace of God through His Son for his status as an adulterer to be not looked at by God (Isa. 43:25 /Jn. 3:16). Man will be saved not because of what he does or not do, can or cannot do, will or will not do but by God's grace in Christ. The bottom line of the issue is the question: Is a homosexual more sexually immoral than an adulterous heterosexual? Why should we care when The Christ does not care as He can save both?
THE EUNUCHS WHO HOLD UNTO CHRIST
There is a special group of people foretold by God through the Prophet Isaiah who will now be welcomed and received in the house of God. They are the eunuchs who were once considered defective and were disallowed to get near the altar in the house of God (Lev. 21:18, 20-23), now God has a change of heart towards them:
For thus says the Lord:
“To the eunuchs who keep My Sabbaths,
And choose what pleases Me,
And hold fast My covenant,
5 Even to them I will give in My house
And within My walls a place and a name
Better than that of sons and daughters;
I will give them an everlasting name
That shall not be cut off.
What are eunuchs? They are those who were castrated at young age to make them grow less masculine and more feminine so they can become the guards for the queen and princesses while the king is away to war – they are to protect the purity of the women in the king’s court. The removal of their male reproductive organs affected their hormonal development which in turn made them become very feminine with their physical and even emotional developments. The Christ also talks about the three ways that one could become a eunuch or a man of feminine attributes:
11 But He said to them, “All cannot accept this saying, but only those to whom it has been given: 12 For there are eunuchs who were born thus from their mother’s womb, and there are eunuchs who were made eunuchs by men, and there are eunuchs who have made themselves eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven’s sake. He who is able to accept it, let him accept it.”
One can become a eunuch by birth, by man’s ordinance, and by his own personal choice. The Lord Yeshua, having a big heart to save anyone who believes regardless of his or her weakness and impurities, have foretold about them although he knew then that not all can accept this truth. Ever since man’s earliest records, man has always been prejudice and unfair towards those who are gender challenged, people who choose to identify themselves with the opposite gender. Some of them become homosexuals as they developed in life. Are they now then cast out by The Savior?
37 ... the one who comes to Me I will by no means cast out.
What can make us accept the homosexuals in the same way we accept everyone else? We just have to possess the non-judgmental mindset of The Christ, as this is God's righteousness or fairness (Isa. 42:21, 18-20). The Lord has given this understanding to His true disciples expecting them to be able to accept it (Mat. 19:12), as they are the ones whom The Lord expects to live His love (John 15:9-10) and to make disciples of all people (Mat. 28:19) regardless of their background and personal preferences.