Monday, November 07, 2011

introduction to homosexuality

Thanks to Justin Taylor for drawing attention to Professor Sam Williams' one hour Introduction to Homosexuality: Causes, Change, and the Gospel.

In this Williams discusses:
  • What causes homosexuality?
  • Can we be responsible for that which is not consciously chosen?
  • What is the difference between having same-same attraction, same-sex orientation, and being “gay” or “lesbian”?
  • How many people self-identify in these ways? Do people with same-same attraction actually change?
  • How can they change?
  • What does the gospel have to do with this issue?
  • How can we promote change in the church for those who struggle?
I agree with Williams' opening point, "I view every aspect of homosexuality as a product of the fall and of the sin nature; it's just not the way it's supposed to be."

He then used the following graphic to begin discussing differences between Same Sex Attraction (SSA), Same Sex Orientation (SSO),  and truly identifying as gay or lesbian. One thing that irks me more than those espousing the LGBT agenda is Christians failing to understand the difference between our desires and our nature. Remembering this and applying the information explained by Williams will help us a lot as we bring the Gospel to those entangled in this (or any other) sin.

To quote Williams, "Homosexual identity is a decision. It is personal and contextual. ... Homosexual as an identity is a historical artifact belonging only to contemporary western culture. It is a personal and social interpretation and not an incorrigible fact."

In our fallen nature, we all have sinful desires. For a person with SSA or SSO to move to a place of identifying as a homosexual, they have gone through some challenges. Sadly the world, under Satan's influence, is eager to help sinners find identity in sinful desires. This is not the Christian position.

David Wells said, "worldliness is that system of values in any given age which has at its center our fallen human perspective which displaces God and His truth from the world and which makes sin look normal and righteousness seem strange. It thus gives great plausibility to what is morally wrong and for that reason makes what is wrong seem normal."

We have the choice to find our identity in a Christian or a worldly framework. The key issue is which framework will one use to view one's desires?

So when we ask what causes homosexuality in regard to biology, temperament, or environment; the honest answer is we don't know and it probably varies.  Williams uses the following slides to discuss.

The key is that as Christians we can and should be quick to agree that people are "born that way". All of us are born slaves to sin. All of us need God's grace to choose to not sin and all of us are held accountable for our choice to reject or accept His grace.

As Williams so wonderful puts it, "We have a God who aims to interpret and govern and redeem every part of our lives. The good news of God is that whatever is distorted and broken can and will in God's good time be restored and healed. Christ assumed a full human nature to heal all of human nature.

Disordered desires of all sorts result from disordered worship."

Let us ensure that in the midst of sin that it is the Gospel of Christ that is seen and heard and in that, and that alone, their is healing and freedom from all manner of bondage.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I would have to disagree with Professor Sam Williams. I am homosexual, I identify as gay, and neither my friends, my family, my church, nor myself consider my identity a sin. I've read the gospel and taken several courses that discuss the Bible and homosexuality: the conclusions are best put in a documentary called Fish out of Water (