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The Future of the Church and Homosexuality #1

The Truth Pulpit / Don Green
The Truth Network Radio
June 9, 2023 12:00 am

The Future of the Church and Homosexuality #1

The Truth Pulpit / Don Green

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June 9, 2023 12:00 am

Too many churches today are so inclined toward pleasing people and society at large that they've forgotten about pleasing God through obedience to Scripture. You'll pardon us if we don't choose to join in! Today on The Truth Pulpit, Pastor Don speaks boldly about "The Future of the Church and Homosexuality".https://www.thetruthpulpit.com/Click the icon below to listen.

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As we address the future of the church and homosexuality, how do Christians, how should the church respond to this situation?

Well, let's lay out first of all what we cannot do. Too many churches today are so inclined toward pleasing people in the society at large that they've forgotten about pleasing God through obedience to Scripture. Well, you'll pardon us if we don't choose to join in. In fact, today on the Truth Pulpit, Pastor Don Green speaks boldly about the future of the church and homosexuality. And Don's here right now with some opening remarks. Well, friend, as you're listening today, we understand that the winds have shifted against the church and against the people of Jesus Christ on this issue. And it can get a little bit discouraging to see the things that are happening in our world today and see how God's truth is being abandoned and rejected and actively opposed. Well, these messages here today and on Monday are going to be a great encouragement to you as we consider the future of the church. Christ is still Lord, he is still building his church, and he still reigns. Find hope today as you continue to listen to us on the Truth Pulpit. Thanks, Don.

And friend, have your Bible handy as Don teaches God's people God's Word from the Truth Pulpit. What can we not do? First of all, we cannot approve homosexuality. We cannot approve homosexuality. We cannot bend on this issue as our society has done.

We are not to follow the lead of the world into further darkness. To accept homosexuality would be unfaithful to Scripture. It would be unfaithful to Jesus Christ, the one who has saved us from our sins.

And that's about all that I'm going to say about that, because the prior four messages have outlined why that is unthinkable for us to do. It is unthinkable for us to affirm people in their sin, to affirm them in darkness, to tell them that God is okay with you being gay, and then letting them just meander their way into eternal destruction. It is unfaithful to Christ, it is unfaithful to Scripture, and it is unfaithful to unsaved people to make such a statement. And so, faithfulness to God and faithfulness to our fellow man forbids us from following the world and giving our stamp of approval to homosexuality. And so, we will be faithful. And we won't even be unfaithful to homosexuals who need to repent and believe the gospel. When they tire of their sin, when they find themselves weary of the destructive lifestyle that they have chosen and pursued, when they are without hope, and when they are perhaps facing death and saying, What happens to me when I die?

I need someone to save me! Beloved, we as a church, we as Christians, the Scriptures will be there to offer hope, not having to backtrack on a compromise that we made under the influence of popular opinion right now. We will take the long-term view, we will trust God, we will not drink in the spirit of our age. We cannot approve homosexuality no matter what else we do. Secondly, what we cannot do. Secondly, we cannot stop homosexuality. It's not even what we're called to do. But we can't stop it.

And I say this to help you have a sense of relaxing a little bit maybe, of not being quite so uptight about what we see happening around us. Because it's not within our power to stop this surge of sin in our society. First of all, we need to understand that Romans chapter 1 indicates that we are seeing a judicial act of God upon our society. That He has given our society over to this depraved mindset as a judgment on our prior ungodliness. Romans 1.18 says that the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men.

Notice the order. There's an ungodliness that is followed by unrighteousness. And long before our society ever embraced homosexuality, there was a prior abandonment of the fear of God and the authority of Scripture. And what we're seeing now is just the outworking of the inevitable consequences of turning away from God. There is no such thing as a righteousness that is apart from a fear of God and the righteousness of Christ. And so we must know the times and be sober in spirit, and as we see this unfolding and we're informed in our understanding by what Scripture says about these sorts of things, rather than trying to rouse ourselves up and to stop sinners from sinning, which they do by nature, we need to realize, oh, the gravity of what we're facing, the gravity of what we are witnesses to, of seeing God's hand handing over a society unto judgment, and we are seeing it play out exactly like Scripture says that we would. Men pursuing unnatural lusts and having that become predominant in our society. Beloved, if God is exercising judgment, we are not going to stop the progress of His hand.

And what we do instead is we humble ourselves, we tremble before Him, we plead for His mercy, we confess that we too are guilty of our own sins, even if we're not guilty of those of the society at large. We recognize the times and we're sober in spirit, but we don't take upon ourselves an impossible burden of saying, I must somehow stop this. Besides, we need to be realistic about the whole situation. The homosexual lobby is not going to go away. The fact that they have this Supreme Court decision in their hand is not their final destination.

All this is going to do in human terms is simply embolden them to seek even greater gains. And so we're not going to stop that. The mere fact that we preach is not going to stop an entire sinful movement in its tracks, and it's not within our power to do that.

And so don't take on to yourself a burden and a responsibility that you cannot possibly fulfill. The homosexual lobby is not going to go away. And beloved, as we think that way, as we understand that, I find it personally very helpful to understand and to realize that homosexuality was present throughout biblical times as well. It's addressed in the Old Testament.

It was present very prominent in the culture of the New Testament as well, in the surrounding culture. Did that stop the people of God? Did that hinder the advance of the purposes of Christ? Did it keep his church from growing? No.

No. Quite to the contrary. In the midst of a pagan depraved culture, the Church of Christ was born in the book of Acts and grew and flourished. And so they do not have a stranglehold on the Spirit of God and the movement of what God intends to do. It's helpful for us to realize that what we're seeing is nothing new over the course of the history of man. And so while we grieve over what we see, we should not be shocked, and we should not think that it's within our meager power to stop this growing snowball that's rolling down the mountain.

It just doesn't work that way. And rather than thinking that we should do something to try to stop it in political or legal means, we need to realize and humble ourselves and say this manifests our weakness. This manifests how much we need to humble ourselves before God and to cry out for him, for help, for mercy, for him to act because it's beyond our power.

And you know, I'll tell you, this is just my judgment on the situation. The Church of God, the Church of Christ, the professing church, let's say it that way, the so-called evangelical church, it's evident that the professing people of God are not yet sufficiently humbled under what has happened. Because there is not a sufficient humbling and a crying out to God in this. Rather, we're bemoaning our own personal loss, bemoaning the circumstances that we find ourselves, worried about the loss of our rights, and there is not that spirit of crying out to God in the midst of oppression that we've seen from the Psalms in our Tuesday night studies.

And a crying out to God and a humbling that says, I am helpless in this situation. That's just, that spirit is not animating the discussions that are about. And so there's no reason to think that this is going to get better until the people of God seriously humble themselves under what's happening and cry out for mercy.

We're still too convinced of our own strength and ability, and we need to abandon that and admit our weakness before God, and admit our weakness before the powers that are at work and to find ourselves humbly casting ourselves at His feet. We can't stop it. And so while we grieve over it, we're not shocked and we don't try to take on that which is beyond our power to accomplish. Now thirdly, we said we can't approve homosexuality, we cannot stop it. Thirdly, I would say this, we cannot ignore it. We cannot ignore it. And frankly, I've had to come around to this position over the past many years. You know, I wanted to ignore it in my ministry.

I would have preferred not to speak publicly about this issue because it's such a shameful and dark sin. And you would prefer not to even inject it into the minds of people at one level. But this is the world that we live in.

And even as parents with young children, I'm not saying that you should introduce your children to this at a particularly young age when they're barely old enough to read or write, I'm not saying that. But even as young families, we need to understand that this is the world that our children are going to grow up in. And we need to be somehow proactive in instructing them in righteousness because the world around us is going to be quick to fill in the vacuum if we don't. We can't ignore it. We ignore it and you ignore it as parents to your own peril. And as a church, just seeing the way that Christians are unsettled by this issue, seeing the way that proponents of homosexuality are perverting and twisting even the Scriptures, trying to make them seem like they support the lifestyle that God so evidently condemns, we can't ignore it. We must rise to the occasion.

We must meet the challenge of our age and face it. And we can't ignore it because the activists are aggressive. They're well organized. They're litigious. They are media savvy, as has been evidently displayed to us over the past several years. They have a sympathetic media.

They have sympathetic politicians. It is simply part of our world and so we must deal with it. And so we can't approve it, we can't stop it, we can't ignore it. There's one other thing that we can't do as the people of God. We cannot fear it. We cannot be afraid. That is not worthy of Christ and that is not worthy of our God. We cannot fear homosexuality or its advance in society.

Why do I say that? Finally, we're going to turn to God's Word here. As Christians, we don't live from a position of fear at all. That is not the call of God on our lives. Turn to the book of Proverbs, if you would, Proverbs chapter 3, and just reminding you of some very basic scriptural truth. Proverbs chapter 3 verses 5 and 6. Proverbs 3 verses 5 and 6 says, Trust in the Lord with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding.

Acknowledge Him in all your ways and He will make your paths straight. Trust is anything, it's a spirit of confidence and an absence of fear. And our confidence is rooted not in knowing how political events are going to unfold in the coming years.

Confidence and trust is not found in the direction of society. We come back to our God. We come back to Yahweh. We come back to our covenant keeping, promise making and promise keeping God who has said that He will be with us, He will watch over us, He will sustain us, He will keep us. And we rest in that regardless of what happens around us in our circumstances.

We trust our God all the way and we do not lean on our own understanding. And someone might say and might object, but this is really bad. This is unchartered waters for our nation. Don't you realize what's happened to our Constitution? Don't you realize that we're under tyranny? Don't you realize that these people have other agendas planned? To which I say, all right.

And you know what, I don't understand, I don't know where all of that's going. And it's not even relevant to the point at hand. Because we trust in the Lord with all of our heart, with an undivided heart, with a purity of commitment and a purity of trust that is worthy of Him that says I will not accept fear and in all my ways, even in these ways of the society around me, I will acknowledge His sovereign care over my life and I will trust Him and not be afraid. This is basic spiritual life, isn't it?

This isn't anything new. Nothing has changed in that regard for us. We cannot live in fear because we know the true and living God. He has commanded us to trust Him. He has proven Himself worthy of our trust.

The outcome for us is going to be good in the end. There is no reason for fear. And to be fearful simply because society is degenerating around us is ultimately to be unfaithful to God.

Our Lord said, be anxious for nothing in Matthew chapter 6. And He intends us to do that. He intends us to obey Him even from the depths of our hearts and to cultivate that trusting, restful spirit that says, though the waves are bounding around me, I'm secure in the boat because Christ is with me here. And when we manifest that kind of trust in the midst of the cataclysm that's happening around us morally in our society, we are manifesting the glory of God and not the spirit of our age.

And so we don't give in to fear just because of what we see happening around us. Further, beloved, turn to Matthew 16 if you would. Matthew 16.

In Matthew 16, Jesus is talking to His disciples. And He had asked them in verse 13. He asked them, He said, who do people say that the Son of Man is?

And verse 14, they give voice to the incredible confusion that was surrounding the ministry of Christ at the time. They say, well, some say that you're John the Baptist and others Elijah and still others Jeremiah or one of the prophets. And Jesus said, but who do you say that I am? Peter said, you're the Christ, the Son of the living God. Jesus blessed him. He said, my Father who's in heaven has revealed this to you. And look at what He says in verse 18. I also say to you that you are Peter.

And upon this rock, here's what I want you to see. Jesus says, I will build my church. In the midst of a confused and spiritually misdirected society in the first century, and there was a complete misunderstanding of who Christ was around Him.

In response to one man saying, Jesus, you are the Christ, the Son of the living God. Jesus, in the midst of such seemingly meager reasons for confidence says, Peter, on the confession that you just made, I will build my church. Christ's power to build His church, to bless His people, and to establish His will is not contingent upon the opposition of men. He has the sovereign ability, the sovereign right, and the sovereign intention to build His church and the fact that He will continue to do it in the midst of the society that we find ourselves in today is simply going to be a greater manifestation of His power. The victory is greater when the opponent seems stronger.

It is a greater accomplishment to defeat the Green Bay Packers in football than it is to beat a junior high football team. And as men raise up with the impression, with the stamp of approval from the United States Supreme Court, and when they rise up with that level of approval and authority, humanly speaking, and Christ deliberately, intentionally, without any diminishment of His ability, continues to build His church, His power and His glory are going to be put on even greater display. Trust God's Word. Trust Christ when He says, I'm going to build my church. And if you belong to the Lord Jesus Christ today, you are included in His intentions. He's not only going to add people unconverted now to His church in the future, He's going to continue to build and sanctify you. He's going to continue to conform you to His image. And that is His ability to do that, the power of the indwelling Holy Spirit is completely undiminished by what we're seeing in the homosexual world around us. And so why would we be afraid?

Think about it this way. On what grounds, in light of all that Christ has said and all of the promises and commands that He's given, trust in the Lord with all your heart. I will build my church. Nothing will separate you from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Lo, I'm with you always, even to the end of the age. And we just keep multiplying these great promises that our Lord has made to us. On what ground would you enter into His presence and say, I'm aware of all of these promises, Lord, but I am afraid. I don't think that you can pull it off.

This is too big even for you. Let's hold it up and view it for the lack of faith and the culpable unbelief that that is. Let's just take Jesus at His word, why don't we? And He says He'll be with us. He will build us. He will keep us. He will deliver us safe to heaven.

Let's just take Christ at His word and rest and be content in that, no matter what happens around us. That is the kind of confidence and trust of which He is worthy. That is the kind of confidence and trust which is our prerogative as Christians to enjoy.

To say just a little bit more. That's our duty as Christians, to trust Him triumphantly and courageously, even when circumstances seem to dictate to the contrary. Beloved, it doesn't take trust. There's no victory of heart in trusting Christ when everything is lined up the way you want it to be in life. There's no glory in victory if your opponent forfeits, is there? No, no, the victory, the glory is when you trust in the midst of opposition and come out safe on the other side. The victory is gained when you trust and you don't know what's going to happen.

You don't know the outcome, whether homosexuality in society or the sorrows of your own life or the challenges that you currently face. Don't wait to trust God until you see how it comes out, because that's not your victory. Your victory is standing up like a man and saying, I will trust the Word of God solely on His own authority no matter what I see happening around me. That's the kind of Christians that we're going to be.

That's the standard, that's what we call ourselves to, because that's the call of the Word of God on our lives. And so we cannot fear. To fear would be to betray our God, to betray our Christ, to doubt His Word, to question His providence.

And so we can't fear no matter what happens in the days to come. That's Don Green, founding pastor of Truth Community Church in Cincinnati, Ohio, with part one of a message called The Future of the Church and Homosexuality, part of our series, The Bible and Pride Month. Don will have the conclusion for you next time, so join us then here on The Truth Pulpit.

But right now, here again is Don with a closing word. Well, my friend, thank you for being with us today on The Truth Pulpit. You know, our biblical voice on these ethical matters is an increasingly minority opinion in culture today.

But I'm encouraged nonetheless. It may surprise you to know that our ministry reaches nearly all 50 states and over 40 countries on a consistent monthly basis. And so God's Word is having an impact, and He will never allow it to return void. You know, friend, would you consider supporting our broadcast to enable these podcasts and airing over local radio stations to continue as we minister God's Word? You can find the ability to give on our website, thetruthpulpit.com. That's thetruthpulpit.com. Thank you so much, and God bless you. Thanks, Don. And friend, for information on procuring free CD copies of the series, The Bible and Pride Month, just visit us at thetruthpulpit.com. That's thetruthpulpit.com. I'm Bill Wright, inviting you back next time as Don Green again teaches God's people God's Word from the Truth Pulpit.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-06-09 05:00:53 / 2023-06-09 05:09:45 / 9

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