In my last post, Choosing to Stand for Justice (Part 1), I talked about the need for people to take a stand for godly biblical principles. Holiness and righteousness is one of those principles – God calls us to be holy because he is holy. When we stand in the Word of God, we should likewise find ourselves standing in all manners of righteousness. Now I know for many people, this is hard to swallow. Yet, it is required for people who fear and walk with the Lord.
Holiness and righteousness is widely unpopular in a culture that seems to accept everything from everybody. But we must remember that God has not called us to popularity, in fact he has called us to peculiarity in order to proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light (I Peter 2.9, NASB). Do you get what Peter is saying here? Your righteousness is a reflection of who God is and what He has done in your life, so that it is not about you (or me) at all but about the glory of His name and the furtherance of the Gospel.
As I have reflected on writing this post, I have wrestled with writing the following concept all week: I believe in our 21st century American culture that the most potent manner of unrighteousness is sexual immorality. Our lives seem to be filled with images, thoughts, and ideas about sex, and not in the way that God intended. God has created us to be sexual beings, in fact it is very central to who we are as humans. But we have exploited it, perverted it and are wasting away completely deceiving ourselves as a result.
There are many ways in which this takes place. For the sake of this post, I want to deal with sexual behaviors between two consenting adults. Although rape, incest, and sexual trafficking are forms of sexual immorality, the issues here go much deeper than holiness and should be handled more in depth, with more sensitivity and probably with a fair amount of law enforcement! These issues aside, I want to deal with premarital sex, adultery, pornography, and homosexuality.
When I look at these sexual sins, I understand that they are not politically correct issues to address. But then I come back to the fact that God has not called me, or you for that matter, to be politically correct but to be holy in all manners of righteousness! And sometimes that causes a fair amount of discomfort, especially when you are dealing with homosexuality. We have friends, relatives, co-workers, neighbors and so many people in our lives living this lifestyle, and we genuinely want to be accepting, loving, and respectful. But how do we do this while still standing for righteousness, because you see a fine line exists between ‘loving’ and ‘accommodating’ and I don’t know about you but I struggle to know where that line is without compromising my convictions?
To be quite frank, I do not think that the church has done a good job in handling this. We have done an absolutely horrible job in dealing with homosexuality in our churches, we just tend to push people away with our condemnation. or we simply don’t talk about it. Both are incorrect responses. And we have not done much better when it comes to other sexual sins either, because guess what, people are having all kinds of sex, and it ain’t the good kind!
I wonder what would happen if we, as the people of God, chose to stand for righteousness and sexual purity here. What would that look like? I’m asking you because I honestly don’t know. But I believe something needs to change because we are breaking the heart of God, people! This is not the life that he has ordained for us! Marriages are breaking up as a result of adultery. Pornography has taken a strong root in the church, affecting laity and ministers alike. People are not waiting until they get married before they have sex, and sometimes end up with multiple partners before finding the right one – what kind of good can come out of this? We are a truly broken people!
God, as we renew our minds in your Word, show us how to stand for all manners of sexual purity and righteousness. We need your help and direction. So far we have not gotten it right and are only pushing people further away from you. Grant us the capacity and the strength to stand for what is right, even when no one else is standing, and to love like you love so that the world will know you are real!
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