Is “being gay and Christian” okay?
by Fr. Emmanuel Hatzidakis | June 2, 2016
I’m in perfect agreement that not “every jot and tittle must be literally, factually true in order for the whole book, and thus our faith in God to be True.” However, having read this, I was curious to see in what manipulative way the self declared lesbian Kimberly Knight would apply her “enlightened” interpretation of holy scripture in order to convince herself, and other Christians (in this case United Methodists, but I speak for Orthodox Christians), that, as she states, “being gay and Christian” is okay. 1
Let’s look at this statement:
Throughout the Gospels, Jesus is stridently critical of the religious authorities of the day and their role as power brokers who draw legalistic, hard-hearted lines delineating who is in and who is out. If you truly worship Jesus the Christ, then you simply cannot live as guardians of the holy of holies. God’s table is open to everyone, everyone, everyone.
Yes, it is true that Jesus came down hard on those who replace God’s word for their own. But the implication here is that the Church (and I mean here the Orthodox Church, the one and only true Church) is at fault, for by erroneously interpreting God’s word, it excludes from the Eucharistic table gays, instead of opening it to everyone.
I was disappointed, because she offered no “enlightened” arguments. Instead, she simply encourages her likes to break away from their “toxic” community and join some other, more welcome community. Don’t forget, she points out, there are “so many… churches that will love each of us in our wholeness without asking that we lie to ourselves, others and God about who we are and who we love.”
I would like to make two comments. The first one is about the apparent many choices we have. However, there is only one Church (and I mean the Orthodox Church) founded by Christ, and the same gospel of salvation should be preached everywhere. The multiplicity of choices is a deception. Either we are in or we are out. The true Church is the Church that preaches the true gospel.
The second comment is about the perceived “wholeness” of gay people. We have another name for wholeness: holiness. The Apostle Paul speaks about it: “Since we have these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from every defilement of body and spirit, and pursue holiness in the fear of God.” (2 Cor. 7:1) The same Apostle had written to the same Christians in Corinth, “Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals … will inherit the kingdom of God.” (1 Cor. 6:9-10)
Turning now to Ms. Kimberly, I would like to ask her (and everyone of the same mind): What kind of people do you think the Apostle refers to in the last two categories? If it is unclear to you, elsewhere he makes it abundantly clear:
Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural [sexual] relations for unnatural ones. In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another, men committing shameful acts with other men, and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error. (Rom. 1:26-27)
So you do not accept what seems to be the clear meaning of the word of God, as it has always been understood by the Church. But instead of abandoning your unnatural relations you decided to join a religious community that accepts you, and others like you, “as you are.” That’s an unhealthy community, which does not follow the word of God.
In a situation similar to yours, the Apostle Paul chastised the community that accepted an unrepentant immoral man among them (1 Cor. 5:9), and sternly commanded them: “Expel from among you that wicked man” (v. 13)—not in order to punish him, but in order to bring him to repentance, as the Apostle and Evangelist John also instructs us to do (see 2 John 10-11).
So who are we? The perfect ones? The sinless ones? Not by any means. We are all sinners, who struggle to live a pure life. That’s what separates us from those “outside”: we are a community of repentant sinners, whereas those outside live in sin and enjoy it, or don’t give a care. So, if you want reconciliation, “repent of your sin” and join a church that will accept you and help you overcome your unnatural passion and live a pure and fulfilling life. If you put your mind into it you can do it, with God’s grace.
- Her article appeared here.
Article graphics and editing by Anthony Hatzidakis