The Beacon Church, Whitchurch

Gay Sex

Gay Sex

Is gay sex not a sin?  Or has Tim Farron caved into  “Virtue Signalers”?

On 25th April 2017 the newspapers announced “Tim Farron says gay sex is not a sin after he admits that he had allowed it to become an election ‘issue’

Yet just a week before this rather startling admission, he had refused to say four times in an interview with Channel 4 News, whether he believed being gay was a sin.

For some reason he has now come and made his “politically correct” views known.

I believe Mr Farron was a lot closer to the mark in 2015,  when he was asked whether he believed gay sex was a sin and replied: “We’re all sinners.”

Now don’t get me wrong. I love homosexuals as individuals …and I know that Jesus does.  More often than not I find gays to be compassionate, warm, intelligent, humble, vulnerable and honest.  Many are genuine and loving Christians.  Many are born with a powerful in-built genetic drive to love members of the same sex.  But as Mr Farron hinted in 2015 ….that doesn’t mean that homosexual sex is not a sin, any more or less than any sex outside of marriage is a sin.

Let’s face it, – like it or hate it – as Christians we believe the bible is the inspired, inerrant, infallible Word of God.

All of it.

It is the “maker’s instructions” – ultimately there for our own good. And I personally have no difficulty remembering where in the bible it says that gay sex is a sin:
It was in 2013 that “The Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Act” was passed in the UK, legalising same-sex marriage in England and Wales. As it turns out – perhaps providentially – the date is a bit of an “aide-memoire”, because it is in Leviticus 20:13 that the Old Testament Law degreed 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”

Now I know that is Old Testament.  Fortunately we now live under the grace and mercy of the New Testament.  But we must remember that the New Testament does not replace the Old Testament, but fulfills it.  God hasn’t done a “U turn” and changed His mind – He has just made sure that mercy has been enabled to triumph over justice through the sacrifice paid by His Son Jesus on the cross.

SO what is my point about Virtue Signalling? Indeed what is “Virtue Signalling”?

Here I am grateful to Piers Morgan who yesterday introduced me to the phrase when he had a very public row on twitter with Lilly Allen:

Morgan laid into the singer, “Pipe down @lilyallen, you ridiculous virtue-signalling, PC-crazed, attention-seeking, hate-stirring, deluded clown.”

I turned to Google.  It turns out that “Virtue Signalling” is the action or practice of publicly expressing opinions or sentiments intended to demonstrate one’s good character or the moral correctness of one’s position on a particular issue. Interestingly it’s noticeable how often virtue signalling consists of saying you “hate” things.

This claim to  hate something….for instance hating intolerance of homosexual sex, can be nothing more than a camouflage for boasting about your own wonderful gleaming beautiful virtue of love for all humanity and “tolerance”.  You deflect charges of vanity and self-aggrandisement, by your anger and outrage. But meanwhile, the under-tow may be less altruistic …you are seeking the reaction:  “why, you must be SO virtuous to be so cross!”

So let me finish with a challenge to all you “Virtue Signallers”: Is “tolerance” really “love for all humanity?”

The modern mindset is fixated on the right to “Freedom!” Freedom of choice has become almost sacred…the only sin which is not tolerated is intolerance. Everyone, apparently, should be free to live in any way they choose.

The only problem with this philosophy is that it doesn’t work.

Your freedom to eat junk food and watch TV will mess with your freedom to live a healthy long life.  Your freedom to watch pornography will affect how you relate to others. Even your freedom to enjoy football comes at the expense of freedom….. there are “rules” which may require some players to be sent off, some to even be banned from the sport.

But perhaps the greatest proof that this obsession with self–determining freedom is flawed is in the area of love.  Love simply cannot thrive without sacrificing freedoms. The modern couple want a relationship that neither requires them to change, nor demands that the other has to change.  The only snag is that this kind of relationship is only true in fiction.. it doesn’t exist in reality.

In reality we live in a world of God – given rules where the “ref” knows what ultimately works for the good of all, and what doesn’t. If we believe the bible then God is after all the embodiment of love:
1 John 4:8 Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.

We all want to be loved and to love – that is when we feel most complete – most fulfilled…but no love relationship can grow without a constraint of some freedoms. 

For married people this may mean a decision to avoid an extra-marital affair.

For doctors this means a decision not to date patients.

For teachers a decision not to date pupils.

And I am sorry.  For homosexuals this may mean a decision for celibacy.

If you find this a very bitter pill to swallow, please find consolation in God, whose love is “poured out into our hearts” by the Holy Spirit.  (Romans 5:5) and whose words can reach into the most painful and private places of our hearts to bring comfort and peace:

Psalm 73:21-26

When my heart was grieved
    and my spirit embittered,
22 I was senseless and ignorant;
    I was a brute beast before you.
23 
Yet I am always with you;
    you hold me by my right hand.
24 You guide me with your counsel,
    and afterwards you will take me into glory.
25 Whom have I in heaven but you?
    And earth has nothing I desire besides you.
26 My flesh and my heart may fail,
    but God is the strength of my heart
    and my portion for ever.

 

  James Muir   May 2017

4 Comments

  1. Nicky Porter

    Very true, thank you Jamie for another brilliant blog, always so clear and helpful.

    Kobus Visagie, South African rugby team player said, ‘The only freedom we have in life is the freedom of choice, but after you have chosen, you become the servant of your choice.’

    Reply
  2. peter j sheffield

    Thank you for an informed, loving , and truthful article. Makes a change for the “church”, any christian church, to make
    a biblical stand. Mr Farron one day will, like the reat of us, stand befoure the great white throne and give an account of
    what we have said, and done, it is an awsome thing to fall into the hands of the living God, I do so pray that He will
    repent on his stand on Gay relationships, abortion, and legalised drugs, and that all who consider voteing for Him and
    His party will cearfully consider there choice befoure they vote. Blessings

    Reply
  3. Steve Nuttall

    I think homosexuality is a part of the human condition, and other species as it happens. As far as I am aware the bible has nothing to say on this point, but I am not a theist and religious texts are hardly a basis for a compassionate politic. However, cultures predating christianity, native americans for example, acknowledged 5 sexual states, thus dispensing with the need to create homophobia or even have the discussion. The paranoia surrounding homosexuality, with which we must now contend, is in large part attributable to sex obsessed hysterical virgins currently being brought to justice for unimaginable crimes against children having betrayed their charge and their philosophy in the most foul manner. Some of these monsters sat in conclave to elect the current vicar of Christ and enjoy papal protection from prosecution yet still feel the need to ‘protect’ society from homosexuals. My point being that homosexuality is not a problem; but is used as a political scapegoat. I would rather argue that the problems caused by celibacy are sinister in the extreme and thankfully have no place in a secular philisophy.

    Reply
    1. AntonG

      Steve, I have been celibate since I became a Christian 27 years ago having lived with a woman before that. I am not in leadership but the Bible is clear that Christian leaders are generally to be married men (see chapter 3 of St Paul’s first letter to Timothy in the New Testament, which is the later part of the Bible). If you wonder why some churches ignore this regulation, so do I!

      I’d like to question your blanket statement that religious texts are not a basis for a compassionate politic. What counts when people of differing beliefs meet is not what their religious texts tell them about theology, but how those texts instruct followers to behave towards others. Not all religious texts are the same (NB!), but as a Christian I know I should treat all people well and I do my best to, including a valued secular gay friend who knows my views. I consider myself no better than others who have not scrambled on board Christ’s lifeboat.

      I think that much of the antagonism between the gay movement and the Christian movement is because we live in a democracy. This means that things like the school curriculum are up for grabs, and the two movements have opposite ideas of what should be taught. Political differences should never become personal, however.

      I do have concerns about the gay Christian movement (as you probably do for different reasons). The problem I have is not to do with their homosexuality but about their selectivity, i.e. they accept the bits of the Bible about Christ but reject the bits about homosexuality.

      Reply

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