Last month when I wrote the article about the Phil Robertson issue regarding homosexuality, the response was overwhelmingly supportive. Of course, there were a handful of “Christians” who came to the rescue of the homosexuals. One criticism that I will cite in general was that I should give equal time to the other sins that are listed in Scripture.Now, because the comment was made on Facebook, I had no way of accurately reading the human emotion behind this response. I could be wrong, but I took it to mean that I should back off and not pick on just one sin. Regardless of how it was meant, I take it as fair criticism so, I will give equal time to writing about some of the other sins. In this case, let’s look at fornication.
Biblically speaking, fornication is when two people are having sexual relations but are not married to each other. In contemporary terms, if two people are fornicating and they live with each other, we sometimes say they are “shacking up”.
What also prompted this article was a Facebook message I received from a good friend that described some family members who were critical of homosexuality, yet they were living with someone they were not married to (and most likely having sex with). Seems logical right? Some might reason, “Sure, fornication between two people of the opposite sex isn’t God’s best but at least it’s not perverted like homosexuality.” (Notice how I substituted the hyper-grace term “isn’t God’s best” in place of what the Bible calls “sin”.)
Here’s the passage from God’s Word that Phil Robertson quoted that caused the uproar:
1 Corinthians 6:9-10 (NASB) Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the Kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the Kingdom of God.
There it is. Fornication listed alongside homosexuality. God lumps those two types of sins together. They’re equal.
Certainly you’ve heard someone say, “You shouldn’t judge, after all, all sins are equal.” (Whatever that means.) I believe that the Bible is God’s Word, it is without error, it is God-breathed and it is the final authority for faith and conduct (behavior). God has already made the judgment about these sins therefore, I am not “judging” by simply quoting God. Some “Christians” apparently feel that I should not bring these topics up. The problem for these types of “Christians” is that God has already raised the issue.
An exception has been made for the sin of homosexuality in our culture as well as in a growing number of church circles. Many of the same people who make statements such as “all sins are equal” make an exception for homosexuality. If you are going to do that, then you must be consistent and make an exception for thieves. I mean, if you know that a thief just sat down next to you in church, would you move your pocket book? You shouldn’t lest you offend her. How about a known pedophile? If you are going to be consistent, then you would have to allow your child to be around him so that he is not “offended”. And, along with these things, shouldn’t bourbon be served for Holy Communion so the drunkards will feel welcome? After all, “not offending” is the new gospel!
I am sure I will be accused of being self-righteous. Some will ask, “Don’t you struggle with sin?” Of course I do. This is a ridiculous question. This question is meant as a diversion for the real issue. The real issue is that I despise sin, especially my own and any of the sins that God has listed. The real issue is that I have not made an exception for any sins, including my own.
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Brad Huddleston is on the Virginia Christian Alliance Board of Advisors. Brad has degrees in Computer Science and Bible. He is an author, speaker, and Evangelist. He and his wife Beth travel the globe ministering in conferences, churches, schools, and retreats. Brad often appears on radio and television. His book can be ordered at www.bradhuddleston.com and www.darksideoftechnology.com, and he can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.