Q. Thank you for your helpful ministry. I include you in my prayers often, as the Lord lays you upon my heart.
I found as I read your article, “Homosexuals in the Rapture”, that I do not disagree with anything you wrote. I hadn’t really given it much thought, but after reading your article, I have to agree that homosexual Christians will be raptured.
However, I am now confused about how Christians should deal with homosexuals who profess to be Christians because of 1 Cor. 5. I understand that we are not supposed to judge each other, and we’re supposed to be willing to forgive each other, but where is the balance between that and living in such a way as to discourage or show disapproval of consistently sinful behavior that is so extreme?
I realize that most of us have besetting sins of some sort, and we can’t stop fellowshiping with each other over every bad habit, but it seems as though the Bible shows some types of consistently sinful behavior as unacceptable for groups or congregations of Christians to accept. How does 1 Cor. 15:33 work with this?
A. The bible makes it clear that homosexuality is a sin. In 1 Cor. 5:11 Paul said, “But now I am writing you that you must not associate with anyone who calls himself a brother but is sexually immoral or greedy, an idolater or a slanderer, a drunkard or a swindler. With such a man do not even eat.”
Refusing to associate with believers who are living a homosexual or other openly sinful lifestyle is commanded. But salvation is by faith and is not contingent upon behavior, so condemning them or questioning their salvation is forbidden, and could make us liable for judgment ourselves.
Jesus said: Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you. (Matt. 7:1) and
“Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven.” (Luke 6:37)
Unless we’re absolutely certain that we’re free from all sin in our behavior, it would be very dangerous to judge another for theirs. And as John wrote: If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. (1 John 1:8)