She sat across from me in my office, arms folded securely across her chest and her jawline tight in resolute rigidity. For the purposes of this article, I’ll call this woman Susan, though that is not her name. Susan had been in a lesbian relationship for a couple of years, and after that broke up, Susan made a profession of faith in Jesus as her Savior.
However, and this is a big however, Susan says she simply cannot believe that her relationship with her former girlfriend was a sin. Her argument is based on her love for this other woman, a love that she still deals with today, even though they haven’t been together for a while. Her heart is broken and her love is real. Consequently, she resolutely says she will never see that love as sin.
And please let me insert here that I do not question the sincerity of Susan’s claim to salvation. She says she knows Jesus and has accepted Him as the Lord of her life, so I have to take that at face value. Justification is immediate. Sometimes regeneration takes a little longer, but neither is my responsibility. The Holy Spirit is quite capable of convicting without my judgment getting in the way.
The truth is that my heart ached for her. I understand her, though not in the sense of her same-sex attraction. I understand her heart, and I understand that it’s a difficult organ to deny. However, that doesn’t change God’s Word, and I know that if her salvation experience was real,
then God will convict her in His time. My job in that moment was to set the stage for whatever God intended to do.
And that’s a hard stage to set given today’s present climate. Religious leaders all over the world and from just about every denomination have publicly stood with her conclusion, advocating that love is love, and if it is love, then God will not stand against it.
So, the stage I set for her that day in my office is the same stage I set for those very same religious leaders across the globe. The stage was one where I was the leading lady and my sin was the central plot.
Having been in an adulterous affair for two years, I was caught, and since I was a believer then and attending church, even leading worship at that church, I was put under immediate church discipline.
After all, the Bible is very clear that adultery is a sin.
Consequently, no one asked me if I loved the man. That wasn’t the issue. Adultery is a sin, and therefore, the adulterous affair had to stop and discipline had to occur. And I disagree with neither.
My point is this: No one asked me if I loved the man with whom I had been having an affair. And I did love him. I was willing to leave my entire family behind just so that I could be with him. Just because the affair ended and I moved to obedience and submission to church discipline didn’t mean my heart changed immediately. I loved him for a long time after that. God brought me to conviction as I moved in obedience.
Back then, however, no one in the church was concerned with my love for him. Nor should they have been. Adultery is a sin because it is devastating to God’s family. It is against God’s natural order in family because only His order brings real joy. My heart would never change that vital truth, and it should never change it.
When I reminded Susan that I had been in an adulterous affair many years ago and then asked her if she thought that adultery was a sin, she was quick to say, “Yes.” When I went on to tell her that I loved the man, I then asked her if my love for him made adultery less of a sin. She said, “No,” though more begrudgingly now since she began to see my point.
What I know now, some fifteen years later, is that God didn’t take this man from me because He is mean and didn’t care how I felt. God brought me back to Him according to His law because only in that would I find true joy. And I have lived in this joy with the husband of my youth for over 35 years.
Compromise will always become compromising, and what we are compromising here is God’s perfect plan for His beloved children. Compromising on God’s Word for the sake of the human heart will never be for our good nor His glory. After all, the Bible also tells us that the heart is sick and deceitful above all things. (Jeremiah 17:9) Why would we compromise God’s Word on behalf of something that lies to us?
Susan still holds to her opinion that her love for her former girlfriend isn’t a sin because it is love. I can’t judge her heart, and neither can I ascertain with absolute certainty what God will do. What I can do, however, is stand firm on what God says. To do otherwise is to place my life on shifting sand.
Unfortunately, the sand is shifting under the feet of many religious leaders today. Standing is going to become increasingly difficult for them.