By R. L. (Bob) Craig
I have preached the gospel for about 35 years. During that time I have also been an employee with, or an employer of, literally, hundreds of different types of people. Some of these people who have worked under my supervision and over which I had power to hire and fire, were drinkers, fornicators, liars, profane and a few were homosexual or lesbian (gay).
All of these are in the category of sin, and I shall proceed to prove that in just a moment, but I cannot remember a single instance in which these people were refused employment or fired because of these sins, unless it would be the sin of lying. This sin cannot be tolerated by an employer, not because lying is a sin, but because the liar is not a person who can be trusted to handle the business of another.
I say all that for the purpose of saying that, so far as I know, the question of human rights or civil rights in regard to any of these people has never been violated even back in the years when you called some of these things by bad names and whispered when you discussed them. I do not know how everyone has reacted to them, but the above is my experience. As long as a person did his job and did not allow his sin to interfere with his work, then what he did in his off hours were of no concern to me or these other employers I have mentioned. In other words, I believe that the “Gay Rights Movement” of the present day is not designed to obtain these above mentioned rights for these people but for the purpose of making sin respectable. And, as far as I am concerned, I have no time or disposition to discuss the political or social aspects of this situation. And, even though I do not agree with all aspects of the Anita Bryant campaign, I believe that she is not fighting against these people having equal rights of employment, etc., but is fighting the idea of homosexuality or lesbianism becoming respectable.
What some of these people, and many others have seemingly forgotten and evidently do not care about, is that employers and land-lords also have some rights. Some land-lords, and if I were one I would be in this category, will not allow people who are not lawfully married to one another, to “shack up” in their house and apartments. They do not want to make their respectable apartments into “houses of disrepute” which is about all you can make out of most of the “living in” arrangements without the benefit of marriage that is presently taking place. The lesbian and homosexual arrangement would certainly fall into this category. They have no legal right nor God-given right to their illicit arrangement therefore a land-lord ought to have the right to refuse lodging to such. Does he have no rights? I will agree that there are several arrangements that God does allow that men have prejudiced their minds in regard to and these people need some kind of legal protection.
So much for the political, civil and social side of this matter. What about the Bible? Does it allow homosexual or lesbian activity or does God regard such as sin? Now remember, these people do not regard themselves as being sick so we are not putting some kind of sickness over which people have no control into the category of sin. These people are saying that they should have the “right of choice” in regard to their sexual lifestyle. This is not something that they have to do, this is a choice that they have made for themselves. No one else has made the choice for them.
I am well aware of the fact that all kinds of morality cannot be legislated. But we are talking about what God desires. Does He have any rules in regard to the marital relationship. And, anyone who has even casually read the Bible knows that He has. In the beginning God ordained that man and woman should come together as husband and wife and that relationship was to continue “until death do us part.” That is, basically, what everyone who enters into such an arrangement makes a vow to do. I recognize, also, the exception to that rule but we will not discuss that right now. The point is that anyone who desires to follow the Bible and serve God will follow His rules and regulations. If they make their own, then they are not following God neither do they have the proper respect for Him that they claim to. All right, any arrangement other than that stated in the Bible, is an arrangement made by man himself, and God has been left out. A marital relationship between two women or two men is not what God ordained. If the state or the denominations founded by men allows such, it will still not be God’s will and therefore will fall into the category of sin.
If there was nothing more in the Bible than the story of Sodom and Gomorrah, that would be sufficient to make people know God’s feelings toward “perversion” of His marital and sexual law. If you have not read the story or have not read it in a long while, now would be a good time to get your Bible and turn to Genesis 18:26 and read through the 19th chapter. Sodomy is the legal term now used for sexual perversion and it originated with Sodom and the sexual perverts who lived there. These people were not condemned because they were sick, but because they were wholly given over to a perversion of the law of God in regard to the marital arrangement.
Then, in the New Testament, please read beginning with Romans 1:20 and then to the end of the chapter. Nothing could be any more emphatic than these verses to let people know how God feels about the homosexual and lesbian relationships. Notice: “.. . . women did change the natural use into that which is against nature: likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly . . . did not like to retain God in their knowledge . . . who, knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.”
Anyone who believes the Bible knows that it teaches against such. How can the churches of today condone any such? How can the people who are engaged in such, think that they are well-pleasing in the sight of God? People are called on to repent of every misdeed they are guilty of, and perversion is one of them. These people do not have to continue as they are; they can change if they want to serve and please God. Until they do, they stand condemned in God’s sight. The law of the land cannot change that and all the demonstrations and protests will not alter it. These people are seeking for respectability in the eyes of society and in the sight of God, but sin is not respectable, and never can be even if all people everywhere accept it like they did in Sodom.
Nearly all these people have become Bible-quoters. Their main verse is that spoken by Jesus concerning the woman taken in adultery: “Let him that is without sin, cast the first stone.” The idea is that we all sin, therefore, no one has the right to call anyone else a sinner or to judge concerning another man’s sins. I will agree that none lives above sin. If we could live perfectly then we would not need Christ; He is the atonement for sin. At the same time, people are called upon to not “continue in sin” (Romans 6:1-2). These people also need to look further into their favorite verse and see that Jesus told this woman to “Go and sin no more.” We must get control of ourselves in every way possible. When we are striving to overcome sin in our lives, we need all the help we can get which includes others trying to overcome sin, also. When all are doing that, we will become a help to one another. Then, striving against sin, when we make a mistake through our human weaknesses (not because we have determined that we are going to live in sin, regardless) the grace of God has been extended to forgive as we repent of that misdeed. Certainly, we all sin, but let’s not let it become a way of life.
So, we are not opposed to all people having a right to live, get employment, eat in a restaurant with others, sit in the same compartments on public transportation media, nor do we think that anyone ought to be mistreated because of their sins. But we are greatly concerned about those who would try to make sin, whatever it is, respectable. I have no more regard for the gossip, perhaps not as much, than I do for the pervert. The liar is one who cannot be trusted by anyone and I have no respect nor regard for him, not only because he is a sinner, but because he is one who is not trust-worthy. Gossip and lying and perversion can never be respectable because God has placed them in the category of sin and sin is the only thing that will separate man from God.
Let’s make our fight against sin. And let those who are engaged in it give it up and turn to God in true repentance and he will receive them. If we are going to serve God, it will have to be His way and not mine or anyone else’s. What I think or what I practice has nothing to do with it. If I am the worst hypocrite on earth, that will still not make your sin respectable, will it? It may make you feel better to find someone you can criticize and someone who also sins, but it will not justify you in God’s sight. You can not go to heaven on the coat-tail of another and you can not escape hell on the misdeeds of another.
Truth Magazine XXI: 42, pp. 661-663
October 27, 1977