Monthly Archives: July 2013

The Spiritual Side of Homosexuality by Tony Harper

Since homosexuality is so out in the open and acceptable these days, and becoming legislatively justified, let’s look at the spiritual and psychological side of homosexuality. People who engage in homosexual behavior (and I state it that way for a reason, which I’ll explain in a moment) always give this rationale: “God gave me these desires. I was born with it. It’s natural and normal. It’s how God made me. So I’m proud of it.” The question is how do we respond to that rationale? Now we know what the word says about homosexual behavior.

Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites…..will inherit the kingdom of God. 1 Cor. 6:9

I have to point out what the kingdom of God is.

…..for the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. Romans 14:17

The kingdom of God is the personal experience of who God is right now.
As far as 1 Cor. 6:9, we can throw Bible verses like this in their face and shake our fingers at them all we want to. “You’re going to hell for what you’re doing!” But that doesn’t help them to understand their behavior. We’re condemning them to fire and brimstone like we usually do, but we’re not helping them to understand themselves. So we have to go a little deeper.
Has anybody seen the movie “The Matrix”? What we see in the movie is not real, but the principle is very much real. We exist in an invisible realm of distortions called a matrix. Our sinful human nature, what the word calls the flesh, has created and continues to create distortions in our minds and to corrupt what God has created as good. So our view of our sexuality, what God has given us for our good, has become distorted. God created man and woman with emotional needs and a sex drive – the desire to be loved and to show deep affection to another person . And those needs are to be met within boundaries that God has firmly established. Our human nature has blurred the spiritual boundaries of our sexuality.

Our sexuality is not evil in itself. It is God’s gift to us. There is power in our sexuality. Our sexuality is our energy. There is a reason God made you predominately male or predominately female. Your accomplishing your mission in this life depends on it. But our sexuality and the desires that come with it must be constantly surrendered to the control of the Spirit. It’s when we become seduced by the pleasure of our sexuality, focusing solely on the pleasure and continually eat of its fruit that it becomes destructive, whether it’s homosexual or heterosexual. They say such desires are natural and normal, but what is natural has to be SPIRITUALIZED. Just to say it’s natural and that’s it is a rationalization for our illicit behavior. Paul calls it a speculation, an imagination.

We are casting down arguments (imaginations, speculations, reasonings, arrogant reckonings) and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ, 2 Corinthians 10:5

When God told Adam not to eat of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, his message was, “Don’t eat from this tree, Adam, not because the tree is evil, but because you are not spiritually mature or spiritually intelligent enough to handle it yet.” “Eat” means to indulge. Our kids are being shown the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil when they are not spiritually prepared for it. Teenagers and adults are eating from the tree and do not have the spiritual intelligence and maturity to handle it. But that is the demonic agenda for our country. Take prayer out of the schools. Forbid any discussion of the Bible in mainline schools. Even phase the Bible education out of the church and make it more entertainment-centered and ritualized and liturgized and socialized. Then find a way to make indulging in their desires lawful, Constitutional, and they will accept it.

If you study the words “good” and “evil” in the context of the tree it doesn’t mean doing what’s right and doing what’s wrong. In the Hebrew “evil” in this context means pain, suffering, adversity, confusion, disorder. Good means pleasure. It is not an action. It is a perpetual state or condition. Sin is the action. Evil is the eventual state or condition of one’s life and affairs resulting from the action. Temptation is the thought. Sin is the action. When we sin, initially it brings good, or sensual pleasure. It’s good because it’s pleasing to the eyes and pleasant to the taste. It’s pleasant to indulge in. It’s pleasant for the ego. But eventually it will bring evil. That’s what’s meant by perpetual. It’s a cycle. Sensual pleasure, when it’s carried beyond divine boundaries, will always in one form or another bring pain and calamity into our lives. Then to escape the pain, to escape the suffering we seek more pleasure, different outlets of pleasure which eventually brings more pain and suffering and disorder.

When the serpent told them “You will be like God”, we have taken the same bait. If you pursue your pleasure you will be truly fulfilled. You will be happy. Pursue your happiness. God wants you to be happy. It’s right and it is your right. But it’s a counterfeit happiness – a distortion, that pleasure equals happiness. To confuse happiness with pleasure leads to slavery according to Galatians 5.

For you, brethren, have been called to liberty; only do not use liberty as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another. Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage.

Solomon would be the first one to tell you. Pleasure is not happiness.
God said, Now man has become as one of us, knowing good and evil. What he was saying was, “Now man has stepped beyond the boundaries that I have set for him.” What God created as good, our sexuality, is now distorted and perverted in our minds and is being used to bring about our destruction, our suffering, our physical, mental, emotional calamity.

I’ve discovered what the Tree of Life is. The Tree of Life in Genesis is Wisdom. Proverbs 3:13-18. Intimacy with God is the Tree of Life, and according to Revelation 22 the Tree of Life has twelve fruit. Human sexuality is a key application of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. The tree symbolizes pleasure and pain. When we eat its fruit outside of God’s intended purpose it will eventually lead to emotional and physical suffering and relational chaos. Homosexuality and same-sex unions defy God’s natural order. Male, female. Sperm, egg. That’s God’s natural procreative order. It does not exist in any way, shape or form in the animal kingdom, which should give us human beings a clue. But heterosexual intercourse outside of the marriage covenant is no more right. It is lust, not love, and it’s just as destructive. God’s love is built on his truth, and truth establishes boundaries. God, who is truth, dictates it is not okay to be ruled by one’s sexual desires, whether it is for a man or woman, heterosexual or homosexual. Man-made legislation is giving us license and opportunity. Uncontrolled human desire opens the door for other destructive patterns, including sexual confusion in the mind of a child that is brought into a same-sex relationship. Kids are confused enough in dysfunctional heterosexual relationships. Now you bring sexual confusion into the picture and they don’t yet have the spiritual intelligence to rightly judge and control their own desires.

There is another major distortion we must be aware of that is being programmed into the minds of our young people. It is identity distortion. The distortion is that because I choose homosexual behavior, or because I’m even tempted in the direction of such behavior, that I am that behavior. I’m gay. You’re gay. I’m a lesbian. You’re a lesbian. So because I believe I am what I seem to desire, I am locked into it, it is what God made me, so I might as well accept it. It’s nothing to be ashamed of. Homosexuality is a behavior, but it is not what you are. According to Genesis 1, at your core you are a spiritual being created in the image and likeness of God. That’s your true identity. But you are betraying your spiritual identity by accepting a distortion of your sexuality and willfully engaging in that behavior. You say, “I’m gay”. No, gay is not what you are. Gay is a behavior you are choosing, an impulse of your corrupt human nature that you are acting upon that defies God’s natural order for your life. But it is not who or what you are, and it’s not what’s going to make you happy. Just because you have an impulse, a desire, doesn’t mean you have to act upon that impulse. You have to judge every impulse with spiritual intelligence. Wisdom, God’s wisdom, is what brings happiness. Not pleasure.

One critical thing I learned in pastoral care and counseling is to separate the person from the behavior. And this is why I say “people who engage in homosexual behavior”. We must be extremely careful how we NAME or IDENTIFY a person. I can’t bring myself to call someone gay. Whenever I have called someone gay, and it’s only happened maybe two times, my spirit gets pricked. Now I understand why. I have just identified that person improperly. It is spiritually improper for me to say so-on-so is gay. That’s not who they are. It is more reasonable for me to identify the behavior and say “So-on-so engages or has engaged in homosexual behavior.” So I’m recognizing that the behavior can be changed while still preserving the person’s spiritual identity. To say gay is what this person is, is to say gay is this person’s nature. Doing so subtly condemns the person in my mind to the permanency of the behavior. I don’t know about you, but I will not do that.

The freedom to indulge our passions is not real freedom. It is a counterfeit freedom that leads to slavery. Yet political forces are telling us the opposite and encouraging it, and offering this counterfeit freedom to us legislatively in the name of “fairness” and “equal opportunity, “national security” and “the children”. The media is feeding it to us daily. Indulging your passions is okay. But real freedom is achieved when our desires are subjected to the Spirit and kept within spiritual boundaries. Discipline. Self-denial. Not self-hate, but self-denial. It isn’t the way of the world and never has been. But it’s the path to the Tree of Life which is hidden in the midst of the garden of the soul.

If a person chooses to live a homosexual lifestyle, it is their choice. To forcefully legislate religious businesses and organizations to accept it in the name of “fairness” and “equal opportunity” is wrong.

Tony Harper is a friend of mine who I work with. I was given full permission to post this on my blog. None of the work above is any of my doing or effort.

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Book Review: Hitler’s Cross by Erwin Lutzer

I am not able to properly describe everything that is in this book. From the beginning, I would encourage anyone to get a hold of this book and understand what happens when churches or Christians stay quiet. Hitler’s Cross is an excellent book that is written by someone who is very studied in this part of history. Lutzer sheds light on how Hitler came to power and how the church bent the knee to follow what he said.

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The beginning of the book deals with how Hitler came to power. It reveals that Hitler was very much involved with satanic practices and thought it was destiny for him to be able to rise to power. Hitler was very charming and caring when he appeared before the public. He was so charming that many people of the church and many others followed and believed in Hitler. But behind all the public speeches and cries for reform, Hitler was very much a man given over to Satan. Because of Hitlers charm, many people were deceived into following him. But soon they would realize they had only one choice: follow Hitlers commands or die. Slowly over time peoples freedoms and rights were take away from them, exactly how it is happening here in the United States. Lutzer does go into that in much more detail in his book.

When Hitler came to power there was a war between two crosses. Hitler’s cross and the cross of Jesus Christ. Churches failed miserably during this time as the cross of Jesus Christ was exchanged for the cross of Hitler. Lutzer gives a wake up call in this book! Lutzer gives us an insight into what happened with the church in Germany. Also he shows us that the freedoms and rights that american people are giving up is exactly what happened in Germany before the Church was totally taken over.

“With a few exceptions, the German church looked away while Hitler implemented the Final Solution to his Jewish problem. Hitler’s Cross provides an intriguing expose of modern America’s own hidden crosses and a chilling historical account of what ensues when the rise of evil is met with the blindness or confusion of a silent, shrinking church.”

I believe my review is not sufficient. I would encourage anyone to find a copy and read for themselves the warnings that Lutzer lays out before the church and how we cannot remain silent.

I was given this book by Moody Publishers for the purpose of this review.

HITLER QUOTE

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Book Review: Bible Savvy series by James Nicodem

The Bible Savvy series is a great tool to develop your Bible study method. This four books series is an easy read and good for all ages. The first book deals with the entire story line of the Bible. It helps the reader understand what the main message of the Bible is. Trying to figure it all out can be difficult and confusing at times, but the first book “Epic” helps you easily understand the purpose of the Bible. The second book “Foundation” helps the read or anyone skeptical of the Bible, understand that Bible is true and reliable. Foundation hits on major topics including Inspiration, how the Bible was put together, and how we were given the Bible, revelation. The third book “Context” is exactly what the title of the book is all about, context! Context is the most important thing that we need today in a world of people that want to make the Bible say whatever they want it to say. Nicodem runs through how to find the context of scripture through understanding the historical setting, literary setting, theological setting, and the immediate setting. The fourth book “Walk” helps us understand how to apply the Bible to our lives, and live a life that is pleasing and honoring to God. Nicodem offers a structured way to apply scripture to our every day life. This is a great little set that I would encourage anyone to have. It makes think a lot more simpler and easier to understand.

BibleSavvySetI was given this Bible Savvy series by Moody Publishers for the purpose of this review.

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