By Joanne Highley
Among Christian ministries that are working to help people who are ensnared in the addiction of homosexuality, there has developed a wide divergence of teaching in regard to being set free completely. By completely, we mean a person can be set free from the activity and the evil desires of this sin. Then that person would be without any homosexual manifestations and totally in touch with his or her created design of heterosexuality. This is the will of God and it is entirely possible.
Some people would argue that this is not possible because we will always sin as long as we are in the flesh. But we would present another view of this question. We believe homosexuality is more than sin--it is also a dysfunction of a person's sexuality. Every person is created heterosexual--that is who we are in truth. In homosexuality there is deception and unreality about sexuality and the created design of God which is heterosexual has been covered by internalized emotions and ungodly reactions to pain. Those emotions and ungodly reactions will come off as the person works to see what they are, renounce them and have them prayed off by a godly counselor or friend. So, we agree we will always sin as long as we are in this flesh, but it does not have to be addictive, idolatrous, deceptive and unreal levels of evil desires that stand against God's truth. We can be totally free of homosexuality and its confusion, torment and death.
Some Christian teachers believe we are holding out false hope to people caught in this sin. We would present the biblical fact that people were being set free in St. Paul's day. “Such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the Name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God”(I Corinthians 6:11) and those whom the Son sets free are free indeed. (John 8:36) Why would the Lord want to leave us "half free and half bound"? It is obvious that Jesus counted ungodly lust without activity as sin when He said, "Everyone who looks on a woman to lust after her has committed adultery with her in his heart." ( Matthew 5:28) So how can we try to justify having evil desires within when that is obviously looking on another person to lust after him or her. We must confess this and turn from it and then do the work to uproot the ungodly reactions and lies that hold us captive. This is possible and it is time to purify ourselves.
Many ministries that work to help people out of homosexuality are beginning to teach that people are never set free from the evil desires and that they can only expect to stop the activity and must always live with the desires. Does this mean they do not believe what Jesus said about looking on a person lustfully being sin, or do they believe that homosexual desires can never be removed. But if that is true, then are all those caught in this sin to be judged as sinners who never repented?
We believe Jesus spoke the truth that is applicable to all sexual sin and addiction. We must see lust as a sin, confess it as such and then work to uproot the motor of the sin--the ungodly reaction to pain, the case against God, the hopelessness, disappointment, the abandonment and the abuse with the accompanying justification of our sin because we have been hurt. God knows every detail of our pain and neglect and He will set us free but we must purify ourselves.
One leader even went so far as to suggest a homosexual covenant that would be pledged between two people who had lived together in homosexual sin. They would also pledge themselves to celibacy and then live together under this " homosexual covenant" for the rest of their lives. This is the height of unbiblical folly in regard to this sin. It is a no-win situation of maintaining an ungodly relationship and living as if there were no hope of freedom. This should never be. If something is sin, we are to turn from it completely, not live in ungodly compromise.
Another form of this compromise is the lie that two people who have lived in ungodly relationships together can simply stop having sex and continue to live together. This disregards emotional dependency which is idolatry and the appearance of evil. The idolatry of homosexuality is serious and an offense to God since you have worshipped the creature and not the Creator, so the total relationship must be brought down and destroyed. There is no health in it. You must separate, sell mutually held property and divide the profit or share the loss and get rid of all possessions the connect you.
These actions to come out of old ungodly relationships and/or activities are the beginning of purification. The plan of God for this work is in I Peter 1:22-23 which reads, "Now that you have purified yourselves by obeying the truth so that you have sincere love for your brothers, love one another deeply from the heart. For you have been born again, not of perishable seed, but of imperishable, through the living and enduring Word of God."
So we see clearly that we must obey the truth in order to be purified. This means reading the Word every day and studying and memorizing verses that will give light to us. It means praying and writing in a journal all the ways our thoughts, emotions, identity and concept of God do not agree with the Word. Than it means working through choice, spiritual work (deliverance, breaking ungodly vows, giving up vengeance, hatred, bitterness, envy, praying against the curse of words spoken on us, giving up any resistance to God's design for sexuality, renouncing justification of sin because of hurt, breaking all one-flesh relationships and soul ties). As we obey the truth we will be able to love our brothers sincerely, not with lustful using of other's bodies to quiet our upset emotions. God wants us after we have no more lust to love our brothers sincerely from the heart. This scripture shows clearly that the teaching that "healthy same-sex relationships are the key to outgrowing homosexuality" is a false teaching. One does not outgrow a sin and healthy same-sex relationships are not the means to freedom from homosexuality, but the by-product of it.
We have been born again, not of perishable seed or our father's sperm, but of imperishable seed from our Heavenly Father through His living and enduring Word.
We are purified by walking in the light and by confessing our sins. "God is light; in Him there is no darkness at all. If we claim to have fellowship with Him yet walk in darkness, we lie and do not live by the truth. But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another and the blood of Jesus, His Son, purifies us from all sin." (I John 1:5 b-7) Here we see that we are to see ourselves as children of light. and choose to walk in the light where He is, then we will have sweet fellowship with the saints ( no dark secrets to separate us) and the blood of Jesus purifies us. When we do this, old emotions will resist the new identity as child of light, but we must go on into the truth and work through the resistance. It will break.
By the same token, if we confess our sins, God is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. (I John 1:9) What a glorious promise, to know just by confessing our sins we will be forgiven and cleansed from all unrighteousness. If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us.
One way to stop the evil desires is to meditate and obey the truth of II Corinthians 5:16. "So from now on we regard no one after the flesh, though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation, the old has gone, the new has come." When we look at people who used to incite lust in us for them, we will remind ourselves not to look after the flesh, or see them as sexual possibilities. We will keep our minds in the reality of what we have allowed ourselves to dwell on and the filth of the sin inherent in that prospect. We also are not to regard Christ according to the flesh, meaning seeing Him as One who would want to abandon us or just let us suffer if we sinned. That is totally against the truth that He is at the right Hand of God, praying for us. Then we can know and see that we are new creations and the old Adamic nature is gone with its desire to sin and the new has come which makes us eager to do what is good.
When you give up the entire context of homosexuality, there is no more keeping records of how long it has been since you masturbated, had sex or looked on someone to lust after them. That is all useless because God does not want records of falls and victories, but a complete change of your heart so you will love what He loves and hate what He hates. It will take some work to cleanse and purify your heart, but then you can rest like a weaned child and God will be glorified.
And He shall sit as a refiner and purifier of silver:
And He will purify the sons of Levi and purge them as gold and silver,
That they may offer up to Him an offering in righteousness.
Purify my heart, O Lord God,
For the pure in heart shall see God
Holy Spirit, come convince my soul,
Make me holy, make me whole.
Purify my heart, O Lord God
Flee the evil desires of youth and pursue righteousness,
faith, love and peace along with those who call on the Lord
out of a pure heart. II Timothy 2;22
Who may ascend the hill of the Lord?
Who may stand in His Holy Place?
He who has clean hands and a pure heart,
Who does not lift up his soul to an idol
Or swear by what is false.
He will receive a blessing from the Lord
And vindication from God his Savior. Psalm 24:3-5
Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.
Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts,
You double-minded. Be miserable and mourn and weep;
Let your laughter be turned into mourning and your joy to gloom.
Humble yourselves in the presence of the Lord and He will lift you up.