No Worse than Any Other Sin

sinOver the last couple of weeks, the topic of homosexuality and gay marriage have dominated news cycles, Facebook threads and every blog under the sun. Up to this point, I have been hesitant to wade into the dark and dangerous waters of this topic, but I have heard something stated again and again during the discussion which I think we, as Christians, need to consider more carefully.

“Homosexuality is no worse than any other sin.”

Of course, that statement is true. Sin is sin.

Sadly some Christians believe – or at least give the impression – that homosexuality is worse than other sins. They are shocked and outraged by gay marriage, but barely blink an eye when a heterosexual couple moves in together before marriage. They are disgusted by homosexuality, but laugh off their own stubbornness, pride and gossip.

Many proponents of homosexuality and gay marriage are quick to point out the double standard and what they consider to be hypocrisy.

So in the debates and discussions, we are often reminded that homosexuality is no worse than any other sin. In other words, we shouldn’t be so shocked or disgusted.

Yet, the Bible calls homosexuality “detestable,” “degrading,” “shameful,” “unnatural” and “indecent” (Leviticus 18:22, Romans 1:24-27). When God speaks of homosexuality, he does so in outrage and disgust.

Our problem isn’t that we overstate the wickedness of homosexuality. Our problem is that we often understate the wickedness of other sins.

“Homosexuality is no worse than any other sin.” As Christians, we shouldn’t respond to that statement by treating homosexuality as any less evil. We should respond by showing the same shock and disgust for other sins, including our own.

In God’s eyes, a boyfriend and girlfriend sleeping together before marriage is detestable and degrading. The little white lies you tell your boss or your wife are wicked and evil and deserve the horrors of hell.

Every dirty thought is shameful. Every ugly word disgusts God. Every sin is evil. The sin of homosexuality should disturb and sadden me, but so should my own gossip and pride and selfishness.

Sadly, we so often shrug off our own sins as no big deal.

“Nobody’s perfect,” we say.

“At least I’m not as bad as Joe Shmoe over there,” we think.

Yet God utterly detests my sins. They are dirty and disgusting and deserving of hell. The Apostle Paul understood how deplorable his sin was. The greatest missionary the world has ever known confessed, “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners – of whom I am the worst” (1 Timothy 1:15).

That is the truth we boldly confess as Christians. That is how we avoid the accusation of double standards and hypocrisy. We preach the law in all its condemning power. We don’t speak of homosexuality as any less evil. We just make sure we treat our own sins with the same disgust and shame.

And then we cling to our Savior Jesus who came to save detestable, shameful and deplorable sinners like you and me.

 

  11 comments for “No Worse than Any Other Sin

  1. John J Flanagan
    July 9, 2015 at 9:05 am

    I think that there are still degrees of sin which merit God’s wrath more than others, even though all sin is disobedience against the Lord and can only be satisfied through the sacrifice of Our Lord at Calvary. For example, when the sins of Sodom and Gomorrah reached heights of collective degeneracy in the widespread practice of homosexuality, God destroyed the people there and reduced the cities to rubble. Other sins, murder, plunder, rape….as recorded in scripture, merited both earthly Justice and eternal damnation in unrepentent and unsaved individuals. Homosexuality has been accepted by many today, including progressive churches, however, they are wrong in thinking this way. When my son was temporarily doing a post graduate internship in California, he was about to go to a local gym near his job to work out. He declined to go there when people familiar to it advised him to stay away…..why?….because it was frequented by a large number of aggressive homosexuals seeking other men for sex. No…homosexuality is a higher level of sin….and America, our beloved country, is no longer the nation I once loved. It is now a modern form of Sodom and Gomorrah.

    • July 9, 2015 at 10:10 am

      I must respectfully disagree with John Flanagan.

      Our sins, all of them, every single one, sent Jesus to the cross. The “little” ones did not hurt less than the “big” ones. There were none so trivial that they were left out of the load. If Jesus died because of the sin of all humankind, then one sin cannot be less wicked than some other sin.

      • John J Flanagan
        July 9, 2015 at 12:52 pm

        I already stated that all sin is disobedience against the Lord and worthy of damnation without the salvation received through Christ alone. But you cannot convince me that in God’s just wisdom, He will place the sin of minor significance on an equal measure with the sin of a wicked, malevolent serial killer who draws pleasure from repeated acts of willful torture and murder. The truly repentant of even the worst sins can be forgiven and redeemed, as in the case of Paul, who acknowledged his part in the martyrdom of Stephen and the stoning and persecution of early Christians. The homosexual can be redeemed, but in today’s climate, even many liberals identifying themselves as Christians will tell you that God Himself sanctions and affirms gay marriage…..which is a lie. There are so many verses covering the willful affirmation of sin, calling darkness light, calling sin righteous, that one cannot go far into scripture before reading God’s declared word on such matters.

      • Ken
        July 10, 2015 at 6:25 am

        The point well taken by all, however, with the passing of laws allowing a sin, no matter what the sin, encourages that particular sin. That being a sin in itself. God does not want us to lead others into sin, nor approves such. By law we are not encouraged to kill, steal, lie, commit adultery, covet, and ect. By the gay marriage law, it goes against God’s will, however, it also encourages the sin, and support of that sin. Perhaps this is one of God’s tests to see where we stand.

  2. Mark
    July 9, 2015 at 10:32 am

    “‘Now this was the sin of your sister Sodom: She and her daughters were arrogant, overfed and unconcerned; they did not help the poor and needy.” – Ezekiel 16

    Seems to me if you believe in degrees of sin, and that destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah prove that, then you’d have to believe that arrogance and not taking care of the poor are worse than homosexuality.

  3. Mark B
    July 10, 2015 at 7:40 pm

    I also disagree with the idea that homosexuality is a worse sin. Any sin, no matter how small and trivial it seems to us, requires death. That means the little white lies we tell, the fact that we overeat or gossip or the myriad of little sins that we do everyday all deserve the same thing. Death. If they all deserve the same punishment, then there is none that God views as worse. We do not affirm menial and mortal sins as the Roman Catholics do.

    We really need to be quite open about the fact that we all deserve death for the sins we do. And that we are no different than any other sinners. We all deserved death. But, the grace and mercy of a loving God provided the answer for all of us, Christ’s perfect life, Christ’s willing death on the cross and to signal to the world that He had overcome sin, death and Satan, His (Christ’s) resurrection. We have no right to act like the Pharisees and think we are better that those sinners, because we are not. We are saved by Christ’s righteousness, not our own. Just as those who have SSA (Same Sex Attraction) are.

    We have some great resources in the WELS for dealing with SSA. We have an individual who has lived that lifestyle and came out of it back into Christ’s loving arms. We have books written by at least two different pastors on how to deal with SSA. And we have the best resource of all, the Bible.

    • schroera
      July 10, 2015 at 7:46 pm

      Mark, Another great resource within the WELS for those struggling with same sex attraction or families dealing with this issue is: People of Grace Ministries (http://www.poglutherans.org/).

    • July 11, 2015 at 2:01 pm

      I do not be live men be with men or other

  4. Mark B
    July 10, 2015 at 8:16 pm

    Scott is the person I was talking about. I was able to attend the Michigan District’s Ohio Spring Conference and Scott made presentations there, along with other presentations by Pastor Monday. It was perfect timing for an issue that is blowing up around us who are confessional Lutheran Christians. I feel that it won’t be long before we as a church body will be attacked by some from the LGBT community.

    Somehow we need to stand up for what the Bible has to say in this issue while reaching out to those who are caught up in this particular sin. They need our love and compassion as much as anyone does. I think we can be instrumental in reaching out both with God’s Law and God’s Gospel.

  5. July 14, 2015 at 6:22 am

    Rom.1:22-28
    22Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools
    23and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like a mortal human being and birds and animals and reptiles.
    24Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another.
    25They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen.
    26Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones.
    27In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.
    28Furthermore, just as they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, so God gave them over to a depraved mind, so that they do what ought not to be done.

  6. Lloyd
    August 5, 2015 at 1:25 pm

    Use the illustration of a balloon. One pin pick breaks the balloon. Example of sin great or small. We have all fallen short of the glory of God. Only Jesus suffering and death has washed us in the blood of the lamb. He is our salvation!

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