Tough Questions Answered

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Are Christians Against Gay People?

Post Author: Bill Pratt 

It seems that Christians are against gay people, based mostly on our responses to same-sex marriage proponents. Since many Christians are fighting same-sex marriage, then it is understandable that it seems that we are anti-gay. The truth, however, is that no Bible-believing Christian can be against gay people.

I myself have written several blog posts against same-sex marriage, but I thought it was time I step back and affirm some things about gay people outside the same-sex marriage issue. Here are my thoughts.

First and most important, Jesus died for gay people, which means their sins, just like mine, were atoned for on the cross. They, like me, only have to accept God’s unconditional gift of salvation.

Second, we should welcome gay people into our churches without demanding that they “stop being gay” before joining. The church is a hospital, so we should expect all kinds of patients, not just the kinds of patients we’re most comfortable treating.

Third, although gay sexual acts are sinful, they should not be singled out as being worse than all other sexual sins. Heterosexual sexual sins, being an order of magnitude more prevalent, have caused far more damage. Given that homosexuals constitute only 2-3% of the population, we have to say that heterosexuals are the dominant cause of the breakdown of the traditional family.

Fourth, we should support any legislation that addresses illegitimate discrimination against gay people.

Fifth, regardless of sexual orientation, monogamous relationships should always be promoted over promiscuity. Promiscuity is a powerful sin amplifier because it involves many people, whereas monogamy limits the damage of sexual sin to fewer people.

Sixth, there is a continuum of same-sex attraction among homosexuals. Some people feel the attraction very strongly and some feel it weakly. This is no different from heterosexuals, who also experience sexual attraction more or less strongly. Don’t think you know how all homosexuals feel because you happen to know one, or worse yet, because you’ve seen gay characters on TV shows.

In summary, although I will continue fighting against the legalization of same-sex marriage, I want gay people to understand that my views about homosexuals extend well beyond this one issue. I don’t hate gay people. I don’t want them to be treated unfairly. I recognize that their sins do not deserve to be singled out above all other sins. I want them to feel welcome in my church. I want them to come to faith in Christ.


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Comments

  • Chris

    Yes, you are. have you read your own blog? you have virtually nothing good to say about gay people.

    Also, I laughed out loud at number 5. hm, how could we encourage monogamy for gays. hm….maybe if there was some sort of institution (or legal equivalent) that would promote lifetime commitment….hmmm……..hhmmmmm.

    And dont say marriage has never changed, your “loving” god used to be all set with a rapist marrying the victim. wonderful. you keep on fighting gays, people will keep calling you a bigot, and christian privilege in America will keep evaporating.

  • http://toughquestionsanswered.com Bill Pratt

    I’m not fighting gays. I am fighting gay marriage. BIG DIFFERENCE. I guess this distinction is lost on you.

    What does the word “bigot” mean and how exactly am I one?

  • http://toughquestionsanswered.com Bill Pratt

    Are you saying that gay people are incapable of monogamy without being legally “married?” That seems about the most insulting thing you could say about gay people. “We’re going to sleep around until same-sex marriage is legalized!” You must think very little of gay people.

    Monogamy is about committing yourself to one person. Regardless of whether two people get married, we should celebrate monogamy over promiscuity for spiritual, physical, and mental health reasons. Promiscuity is simply far more destructive of human beings than monogamy.

  • Chris

    Man, your blog is a stitch. my sides are hurting from laughing. are you so thick you can’t appreciate the irony? I’m insulting gays, you run a blog where you post pamphlets from hate groups and all you can do is talk about how thier relationships serve society NO purpose or good, and should not even be recognized by the goverment.

    how kind of you, to give them the privilege of just being together, how christian. if you and your elk had it their way you would have anti-sodomy laws back on the books before gay people could run. that was a better time wasn’t it? You say they can have lifelong commitments but not share health insurance or dodge inheritance tax? Its good enough you let them be together, but they’re journey gets to be that much tougher if you have your way. but I’m the jerk. you are truly a champion for gays everywhere.

    hahaha thank “GOD” The supreme court disagrees with you that no, gay couples should not have to pay extra taxes and “god” willing they can have benefits in all 50 states asap.

    Sides note: if god is all knowing/all powerful didn’t he ultimately help scotus reach its decison?

  • sean

    Two things. First, I appreciate that you understand the value in leaving up comments like the ones Chris has. They’re fairly uncivil and insulting, and I think unlike when you or I may do it, it’s intentional. Many people don’t appreciate that free speech means that really everyone gets a voice. That said, I don’t think he’s wrong, just uncivil.

    The second thing is that you say you don’t support discriminating against gays. The way I see it is that denying them benefits they could gain from getting married is discriminatory behavior. This is the way I see it. I know you don’t see it that way. I think from your point of view you can understand why I think what I think about it (which would be that I’m missing a piece of the puzzle as to why you don’t want them to be married). My question is why should a secular nation make laws regarding that piece of the puzzle if it come from religion?

  • http://toughquestionsanswered.com Bill Pratt

    Chris,
    I note that you still haven’t explained how I am a “bigot.” If you are going to call names, at least have the decency to explain what the names mean.

  • http://toughquestionsanswered.com Bill Pratt

    Sean,
    Any two people can get married, but they have to be opposite sexes. That means that any gay person can get married. They may not want to get married, but they can, so I fail to see how they are being discriminated against.

    With regard to the benefits of marriage being denied gay people, what benefits are you referring to?

  • sean

    I can get a long list of benefits if you want, but I think one will do for now. So, if a man and a woman love each-other in this country, we allow an alteration to their family structure. Hospitals, depending on the patient’s condition, give visitation rights specifically to family. If you don’t let these two emotionally attached people become spouses, you’ve denied them the visitation rights granted to straight married couples. In addition, the spouse, in the case of near death, gets to make the call on whether the person stays or passes away, for example, if the patient is comatose and brain dead. They get the assets of the other person at death. These are things we give to committed people who are saying through marriage that the other person gets to be a part of their family. You deny this right. That is definitively discriminatory behavior. You’re denying people the opportunity to give this power to a loved one instead of this person’s family. If this love happens to be for someone of the same gender, you’re saying the government should deny it. On what basis you you make this claim? If the answer is religious in nature, the government has no right to deny it. They can’t make laws because religion. That’s unconstitutional. America is a secular nation.

    Also, you’re argument is bad, because it applies equally to interracial marriages. If you deny blacks and whites the right to marry each other, you’re not denying them the right to marry at all. Any person, could get married, but they have to be the same race. Do you see how it’s wrong with race? Why is it different with gays?

  • http://lotharlorraine.wordpress.com/ Lothar Lorraine

    Hello Bill,

    why should people like me rejecting Biblical inerrancy oppose gay marriage?

    I give a compelling theological argument showing why we should accept life-long homosexual relationships:
    http://lotharlorraine.wordpress.com/2013/08/26/on-the-sinfulness-of-homsexuality-von-der-sundigkeit-der-homosexualitat-deutschunten/

    Feel free to respond me, here or on my blog.

    Friendly greetings from continental Europe.

    Lothars Sohn – Lothar’s son

    http://lotharlorraine.wordpress.com

  • Andrew Ryan

    Another problem with that argument is that it’s inconsistent with the other apologist claim that “Gays are asking for a special new right just for them”.

    Applying the logic of the first argument to the second, one would have to conclude that same-sex marriage is not a special right for gays, as it it equally a right for straight people. In other words, gay men and straight men would both have the same right to marry other men.

  • http://toughquestionsanswered.com Bill Pratt

    Race has nothing to do with the definition of marriage. The reason I know this is because these laws were recent and only lasted a short while in a few places around the globe. They were a blip on the radar if we survey the institution of marriage over the millenia. Marriage between people of different races has occurred throughout human history.

    So, the constant comparison of interracial marriage to gay marriage is a complete red herring. Gay marriage is a total re-definition of marriage as it has been understood for thousands of years.

    You mention several benefits of marriage, but every benefit you mention does not require marriage.

    Hospital visitation does not require two people to be married.

    Healthcare power of attorney can be given to anyone that a person chooses. Marriage is not required.

    Inheritance of assets can be assigned to anybody. Marriage is not required.

    People who love each other are able to commit to each other without getting married. All sorts of people make these commitments every day.

    In summary, none of the benefits you mention are unique to married couples. Gay people are able to visit each other in the hospital, able to give healthcare power of attorney to each other, able to leave inheritance to each other, and able to commit to each other. Marriage is simply not required.

  • Andrew Ryan

    “That seems about the most insulting thing you could say about gay people.”

    Bill, sorry, but I think this is disingenuous. Apologists are always telling me that one of the reasons marriage is important is that it encourages monogamy, and that we can look at statistics showing that married couples are more likely to stay together and stay faithful to each other.

    I have always taken this claim in good faith – that apologists truly believe in this benefit see that as a good reason to support the tradition of marriage.

    But when someone uses the same reasoning to support the idea of gays marrying, your reply is “Why should they need marriage to be monogamous?”

    I suppose you CAN ask that question, but then we could equally ask the same in reply to the apologists I mentioned above – and I’m sure you were one of those apologists – “Why should straight people need marriage to encourage them to stay together and stay monogamous?”.

    Like I say, I always treated the ‘monogamy’ reasoning in good faith, but are you saying I should have instead replied that apologists making that reasoning “Must think very little of straight people” and were “Saying just about the most insulting thing you could say about straight people”?

  • Andrew Ryan

    “Race has nothing to do with the definition of marriage.”

    That’s irrelevant to the point being made, which was that the argument you offered – “Any two people can get married, but they have to be opposite sexes. That means that any gay person can get married” – could have equally been used to argue that anti-miscegenation laws didn’t discriminate against inter-racial couples.

    The fact that anti-miscegenation laws weren’t around for very long has nothing to do with it. It’s either a good argument or a bad one. Would you say that anti-miscenegation laws didn’t discriminate against inter-racial couples because “they had the same right to marry someone of the same race as everyone else”? Would you defend that as an argument?

    Regarding benefits, I work in the pensions industry. I can tell you as FACT that there are big differences in pensions benefits for widows than for surviving partners. And specifically these affect gay couples. On this issue, Bill, you are simply wrong.

  • http://toughquestionsanswered.com Bill Pratt

    I never mentioned pensions, so why do say I’m wrong about that?

    Obviously I wouldn’t defend any argument for banning interracial marriage. I also wouldn’t defend banning international marriage or interstate marriage or even intercity marriage. Why, because the institution of marriage has nothing to do with these things. Marriage does, however, have everything to do with gender.

    Again, comparing interracial marriage to gay marriage is simply nonsense.

  • sean

    If you argue that none of these benefits are different, you’re wrong. Depending on the condition of a person, hospitals will not admit anyone but family. Souses are considered family. If you cannot be a spouse (married to the person) you’ve put these gay relationships in a different category and put limits on it. That’s discrimination. There are HUGE differences in the legal system now. Look it up.

    Now, if your position is that these aren’t necessarily tied to marriage, in other words we could change the current law to make them equally available to gays, you’re 100% correct. We could do that. That’s what gays are arguing for when they want the right to marry. They want all the rights currently associated with marriage. If you’re willing to concede all of these secular benefits, people in gay relationships will be satisfied with that. I’ve yet to meet a gay person who cares what it’s called as long as it will give them what they want.

  • sean

    Here’s a fresh perspective on the issue; why is homosexual marriage an endorsement of sin? I believe the Bible specifically cites homosexual acts as sinful. There is nothing in the Bible about gay marriage being immoral or sinful, and there is nothing in marriage that mandates sexual acts. They are wholly optional. Therefore, endorsement of homosexual marriage isn’t promoting sin. There are many people who self-identify as asexual, and some of them get married. Sometimes people in marriages don’t have sex, or engage in sexual acts. Marriage and sex are two separate things.

  • Andrew Ryan

    Bill, I’m looking specifically at your argument that gays are not discriminated against because they have the same right to marry someone of a different sex as everyone else.

    This is NO different to arguing that a law banning inter-racial marriage is not discriminatory because inter-racial couples have the same right to marry someone of the same race.

    I’m asking you to forget the fact that you disagree with gay marriage and do not disagree with inter-racial marriage; I’m asking you to look specifically at that particular argument.

    Regardless of the fact that you don’t think gays should be able to get married, do you HONESTLY believe that there is no discrimination because “Gays can marry someone of the opposite sex”?

    If yes – you TRULY believe that’s a good argument – how can you not conclude that the same argument would logically mean anti-miscegenation laws would be non-discriminatory, on the basis that they apply equally to everyone, regardless of whether they’re in an inter-racial relationship or not?

    An argument should be judged on its own merit – it doesn’t become a good argument just because it argues for a cause you believe in. It doesn’t become a bad argument just because it supports something you don’t believe in.

    A bad argument for or against gay marriage is bad whether you agree with gay marriage or not.

    If you changed the argument to say “Laws against marrying a seven-year-old are not discriminating against pedophiles, because non-pedophiles are also unable to marry a seven-year-old”, I’d still say it was a bad argument, even though I don’t think people should be able to marry children.

    I’d say: “Of course they discriminate against pedophiles. They SHOULD discriminate against them”.

    If you think marriage laws should discriminate against gays, go ahead and say it, and argue for why they should. Just don’t pretend they don’t, using an argument you’d reject when applied to other groups.

  • http://toughquestionsanswered.com Bill Pratt

    I think I finally see the disconnect here. In my blog post, I specifically said “legitimate discrimination.” As you noted, all laws discriminate against somebody, otherwise they would be useless.

    So, yes, the marriage laws discriminate against people who are of the same sex getting married to each other.

    The problem with the word discrimination, however, is that most people use it in a pejorative sense. When a person says, “You’re discriminating!” what they they really are saying is “You are illegitimately or unjustly discriminating!”

    So is it unjust discrimination for two people of the same sex to be denied marriage? No. Marriage, as an institution, has legitimately discriminated against two people of the same sex who want to be married for millennia because of its very nature (see the blog post on the conjugal view of marriage).

    If we want to remove all discrimination from marriage, then we must logically allow for same-sex, polyandrous, polyamorous, incestuous, and any other type of marital union. Right? This would be the result of not allowing marriage laws to discriminate against anybody. And this is why I find the “discrimination” argument by SSM proponents to be a failure.

    So, are you really saying that marriage should not discriminate against anyone? If not, then how are you deciding that discrimination against same-sex couples is wrong, but discrimination against all of the other kinds of possible unions are right?

  • sean

    You’re correct. And I’m glad were all making headway in an understanding on this argument. In my experience, what pro-gay marriage proponents want is for two consenting adults to be able to partake in the institution of marriage as long as it doesn’t hurt others. This is, I think, where the division begins. You’d probably agree exactly with what I stated above, and would go on to say that gay marriage is an example of harmful behavior. People arguing for gay marriage don’t see that as the case. Would you agree that what I have just presented in this comment is accurate?

  • Andrew Ryan

    “If we remove ALL…”

    Who is suggesting we do that? Not me.

    I was purely addressing the particular argument you made that I’ve already discussed several times now.

  • http://toughquestionsanswered.com Bill Pratt

    So why is marriage, as currently legally defined, unjustly discriminating against gay people, but not unjustly discriminating all the other kinds of people who want to get married?

  • http://toughquestionsanswered.com Bill Pratt

    If marriage is just about love and commitment, then on what basis are you discriminating against all the other kinds of people who want to get married? Why, on principle, are you only for two gay people getting married?

  • sean

    I’m not. I think that consensual relationships are fine. I don’t care what the sexual orientation of the person is. If they are straight that is fine. If they are gay, that is also fine. If they are asexual that is also fine. I am not actually on principle opposed to polygamy. It’s not for me, probably because of what society has made me, but I don’t really care what people do as long as it is consensual. If people want to hook up with several people and everyone is fine with it, that’s their prerogative. I won’t be participating, but I don’t care if other people do.

  • Craig

    I don’t think you are a bigot. Not at all. I do however think you indirectly harm gay people by opposing the recognition of their partnerships, making it almost impossible for them to live healthy lives, and alienating them from the Church – the very institution that can heal the hurt caused by real bigotry. It also makes them feel worthless to know that their unions are “different”, “unofficial”, and ultimately contemptible in the eyes of the God who made them in His image – and made them gay. I know you don’t mean to be cruel. But bottom line is, you are being doubly cruel. You are attacking the very core of human sexuality – the unchangeable basis of their sexual persona. And then you take away the MOST important aspect of their souls – a loving relationship with the love of their lives (no, not their partners, but Christ Jesus). I know of no gay couple who would be able to maintain a relationship with the kind of Christ you offer. And that is just a recipe for blood, tears and death, which has been the result of such thinking in the past – and continues to be the result to this day. Sorry, but you just do not convince in this article. And I respectfully request you to do better for our kids.

    Love
    Craig

  • Greddae

    You are allowed to have your opinion on who may or may not legally marry based on your religious views, but who says everyone in this country must abide by YOUR religious views? Marriage between two consenting adults, regardless of sex, should be everyone’s civil right. Just because it is a sin or immoral in biblical law does not mean it has to be illegal. Should we hold you to the religious laws of Islam? No.

  • Andrew Ryan

    You’ve introduced the word ‘unjustly’. That the laws discriminate is not in doubt – we both agree surely that the laws SHOULD discriminate against some groups. The question is whether the discrimination is just in each case. I’d argue it’s just in the case of, say, underage marriage. That guy from Duck Dynasty got all that attention for slurring gays – he married his wife when she was 16. I’d say that should have been illegal. But I’d argue that gays are injustly discriminate against.

  • http://toughquestionsanswered.com Bill Pratt

    “Marriage between two consenting adults, regardless of sex, should be everyone’s civil right.”

    Why? Make an argument. Since this has not been a civil right, ever, in any civilization, until the last 20 years in some parts of Europe and the US, then the burden is on you to explain why the rest of the world today, and our ancestors across the entire globe have been wrong about this since the dawn of mankind.

    Give us an argument.

  • Greddae

    If we take religion out of the argument, what reason do we have to NOT let two consenting adults marry? If we do use the bible to say who can and can’t marry, did God not give us free will so that we can decide wether to follow him, or to live in sin? He has given us the choice to sin. Why are we as a people then making it illegal to commit this sin of same sex marriage? Should we not make all sins illegal? Or just the especially egregious ones.. and who decides what those are? To use that something has not been deemed a right since the dawn of humanity is not an excuse. Until pretty recently, it was also acceptable to own another human being and treat them like property, denying them of any civil rights. There have also been laws banning interracial marriage since the dawn of time.. does that make them right? Sometimes we need to change practices that have historically been widely accepted so that ALL may have equal rights. People of different or of no faith should not be subject to the laws based on religion. Why should they have to abide by moral biblical laws if they do not follow that religion to begin with? This is just my humble opinion, of course.

  • http://toughquestionsanswered.com Bill Pratt

    You still haven’t provided an argument for your position. You just keep saying that you are right and I am wrong, but I have yet to see an argument.

    Before you tear down a fence, you need to figure out why it was placed there in the first place. You have yet to prove to me that you can tell me why the fence of marriage being about one man and one woman was put there by our ancestors.

    The answer is not “religion” because this definition of marriage has existed within every culture and every religious group throughout history. So tell me why the fence was put up.

    If you’re stumped, you may want to read my several blog posts on marriage.

  • Vincenzo Russo

    I agree on not isolating homosexuals, since they need Christ as much as anyone else. But you can’t speak of monogamy, come on. Monogamy is the practice of being married to one person (word’s etymology literally means “one marriage”) and since marriage is a God given sacrament meant for one man and one woman, it just makes no sense.

    Plus, you can’t say to such a person “while you’re still unsaved, please can you limit your sinful lifestyle within the boundaries of one partner rather than many?”. They’re are going to get the idea that there are levels of sinfulness, which is definitely not the case, because one needs one single sin of any kind to be doomed until the salvation through Christ comes in (if it ever will).

  • http://toughquestionsanswered.com Bill Pratt

    But there are levels of sin. Please read my blog post on that topic.

    http://www.toughquestionsanswered.org/2010/01/11/are-all-sins-equal-part-1/

  • Vincenzo Russo

    I really have no intention to get into the debate about the level of sins; I just want you to consider whether it is actually applicable to the matter at hand. Telling an homosexual to refrain from having multiple partners is like telling a serial killer to become an occasional killer. This is a sexual sin already, which already makes it one of the worst (1 Corinthians 6:18 — even though the context there is addressing believers). I really don’t see how you point #5 can do any good; to me it’s just a subtle endorsement of a “lesser sin; lesser in your opinion, since for such lesser level of gravity, in this case, I can see no biblical support.

  • Andrew Ryan

    Vincenzo, does that mean murdering someone is no worse a sin than taking the Lord’s name in vain? If so, why aren’t you campaigning to have the latter made illegal? Why don’t you argue that Muslims shouldn’t marry, since they all worship a ‘false God’?

    In fact, according to your argument, telling ANYONE not to do any particular sin is like telling a serial killer to just try to cut down a bit, since we’re all sinners, and that makes us all literally no better than a serial killer.

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