NOTE: This is the final post of a 5-part series by Andrew Courtis, Pastor of Hills Bible Church. In this serices, Andrew discussed some of the most contentious issues facing society. In response to these issues, he turns to the Scriptures to present the biblical perspective on each.
What should the Christian’s response be to such conclusions (a right understanding of marriage, gender, and homosexuality)? Sadly, many have responded with hate speech and a harsh condemnation to homosexuals. The believer in the Lord Jesus Christ ought to recognize that homosexuals are indeed committing abominable sexual sin and therefore cannot inherit the kingdom of God (1 Cor. 6:9). However, there is hope for the homosexual. If they recognize their sin before their Creator, repent and believe in the Lord Jesus Christ they will be cleansed from their sin and be forgiven. This is the power of the gospel and this is the hope for the homosexual. Back in 1 Corinthians 6:9-10 Paul lists specific sins that make one unable to enter the kingdom of heaven. Then he says in verse 11, “And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.” Something dramatically changed in the life of these individuals – they received forgiveness.
Why is forgiveness necessary and where can it be found? It is necessary because our Creator is Holy (Isaiah 6:3) and we are all sinful (Rom. 3:23). As the holy Creator, God will judge all sinners (Rev. 20:11-15). By His grace, God makes forgiveness available to all who will recognise they are sinners, repent and believe in Jesus Christ for salvation. Salvation can only be found in the Lord Jesus Christ (Acts 4:12) because He alone lived a life of perfection (Heb. 7:26) and died as a substitute for His people by receiving the wrath of God on their behalf (Isaiah 53:4-5).
Why do I believe there is hope for the homosexual? The answer is, because the Continue reading
I have been a Christian now for about 17 years. The more I learn the more I realize I don’t know. God has a funny way of humbling us and making us realize that we are not the centre of the universe, we are not what is most important. One of the greatest challenges any Christian faces is the life-long process of “denying ourselves‘ (Matt 16:24) and “walking in the Spirit” (Gal 5:17), or in other words living our lives to please God and not primarily ourselves. We will never fully realize this until we go to be with our Lord in heaven.
Jesus said “if you love me you will obey what I command” (John 14:15). It’s pretty clear. If we say we love God, we will inevitably strive to obey Him, to allow His Spirit within to refine us so that, bit-by-bit, we reflect His character. This is to glorify God’s work in our lives as well being a beacon to the hope Jesus gives to us all. What a privilege… what a blessing… what a calling on our lives!
Why then do we often struggle so much to see this in our lives? Why do we find ourselves so enticed to feed our own self-absorbed desires rather than God’s? Why do we struggle so much at times to walk with God and follow His lead in our lives?
Here are three points that I believe can help us all to follow and enjoy God more in our lives: Continue reading
Creative Commons: Christian Values Candle Set
Many churches (and individuals) are teaching and preaching Christian values to a lost world. This message is calling for people to respect and embrace the standards of behaviour taught in the Scriptures. It must be noted that outward conformity to Christian values will extend certain benefits to an individual’s personal life and to those around them – however, this in and of itself it detrimental and damning to the hearer. Dr. R. Albert Mohler insightfully notes in a recent blog post,
“Hell will be filled with people who were avidly committed to Christian values. Christian values cannot save anyone and never will. The gospel of Jesus Christ is not a Christian value, and a comfortability with Christian values can blind sinners to their need for the gospel.”
Here Mohler makes the important point that what is essential in our message to the unbelieving world is the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ. It is the unmistakable teaching of Scripture that the practice of Christian values comes as the result of one hearing and heeding the gospel of Christ (see Col. 1:3-6). This is necessary because the gospel – not Christian values – contains “the power of God for salvation” (Rom. 1:16). This does not mean that the Christian isn’t concerned regarding societies abandonment of Christian values and nor should they be silent on such matters. As Mohler also says,
“We should not pray for Christian morality to disappear or for Christian values to evaporate. We should not pray to live in Sodom or in Vanity Fair. But a culture marked even by Christian values is in desperate need of evangelism, and that evangelism requires the knowledge that Christian values and the gospel of Jesus Christ are not the same thing.”
The point is, we as God’s people are to make the gospel known because only the gospel’s power can bring true and eternal change to a sinner’s plight. We are to preach the gospel!