Spirit-Led Woman

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Anne Paulk, who struggled with same-sex attraction, has some advice on how the church respond with grace and love to those struggling with same-sex attraction. (iStockPhoto.com)

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This idea was heralded in the popular press in 1993 and has been promoted by gay activists for so long that it has become fact to many. In my book Restoring Sexual Identity (Harvest House), I've devoted a chapter to examining this theory.

Based on the born gay theory, activists lobbied for civil rights status and hate crimes legislation. They also fought for acceptance of homosexual civil unions and gained support for church commitment ceremonies and finally, gay marriage--a goal of endorsement of homosexual relationships by the government. All of this is based on very faulty ground--that individuals are born gay and cannot change their orientation.

The Church's Response In general, the American Christian church has tried to avoid talking about difficult things. Homosexuality, abortion, divorce, eating disorders and sexual abuse are just a few of the uncomfortable topics regarding women that we have shied away from.

Avoidance was one tactic, and condemning those dealing with the effects of same-sex attraction was another response. In the 1970s, the church had an incredible opportunity to show love through service and through "speaking the truth in love" (Eph. 4:15, NIV) to those who were dying of AIDS.

We were the bearers of the good news of lasting hope through Jesus. Instead of offering hope, some Christians responded by gleefully pointing out the fault of those dying. "AIDS is God's judgment of homosexuals!" they said. Thankfully, not all Christians responded in this way.

After this time, gay theology and reinterpretation of the Scriptures referring to homosexuality abounded in liberal churches. Wild assertions about Jonathan and David having been in a gay relationship were made by "homosexual Christians." My husband's and my response was, "Then David must have been the first ex-gay--just look at how many wives he had!"

Although Jesus was not recorded to have said anything about homosexuality, He certainly did speak about God's design for human sexuality. "'Haven't you read,'" He replied, "'that at the beginning the Creator "made them male and female," and said, "For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh"? So they are no longer two, but one. Therefore what God has joined together, let man not separate'" (Matt. 19:4-6).

Gay theology comes down to revising Scripture to fit one's lifestyle instead of submitting one's life to God's authority. But the Bible endorses no sexual relationship other than that which exists between a man and a woman in marriage.

Although we do not gain salvation by our own perfection, we demonstrate our love for Christ through obedience (see John 14:15-21). Clearly we have been instructed to "flee from sexual immorality" (1 Cor. 6:18), and that includes sexual immorality in the form of homosexuality.

It would be easy to become discouraged about the church's failings, but in recent years, many Christian organizations have come alongside Exodus International, a 28-year-old Christian ministry that assists individuals in overcoming same-sex attractions. Groups such as Focus on the Family, the Southern Baptist Convention, Campus Crusade for Christ and the Assemblies of God have begun "speaking the truth in love" in the area of homosexuality.

One Soul At a Time There are women and men all around us who are unknowingly slaves to sin and in dire need of salvation, just as we once were (see Rom. 6:13). These are simply pawns in a greater spiritual storm threatening to destroy the souls of men and women.

I can recall an interaction I had a few years ago with about 20 "Lesbian Avengers" in the Northwest. In the previous month, my story had been published in a Portland, Oregon, newspaper called The Oregonian.

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