In preparing our book Compassion without Compromise, we collected questions from lots of people — too many to cover in a short article. Some of them arise from people’s own experiences. Some are hypothetical “What if?” queries that set up scenarios any of us would find daunting. Like you, we are learning the complex balancing act of reaching out in love, speaking truth with compassion, opening the doors for the gospel and trying to be a good friend or family member.
We hope these practical responses will be helpful in your context. Even more—we pray that you will be able to grow in discernment, and exercise biblical wisdom in real life situations. As you seek to exercise compassion without compromise, we encourage you to keep two key principles in mind: a) mission, and b) true love.
I have a friend who is in a same-sex relationship. She says she wants to receive Jesus. Can she truly accept Jesus while she is still living this way?
– Submitted by “Ken,” an author and internationally known speaker.
An old hymn, often sung as the preacher pleads with people to come forward and pray the “Sinners Prayer,” intones, “Just as I am without one plea, but that thy blood was shed for me, and that thou bidst me come to thee. O Lamb of God I come.” We all come to the foot of the cross just as we are. For some of us, the sin in our lives is buried deep below a surface appearance of moral uprightness and apparent success. For others, it’s blazoned on our chest like a scarlet A. But we all come sinful to the Cross.
Though we might sin in different ways,weallcometotheCrossforthe same reason. We have heard the Gospel and believed it. We have seen our sin and want it no more. We have felt some trace of God’s wrath and know we could never bear it. We have understood that Jesus, the perfect lamb, felt that wrath for us. And we now know, “He died for me. I will live for Him.”
Can someone who is in a same- sex relationship be saved? Absolutely. However, that person will absolutely respond in obedience. She will understand that receiving Jesus as Savior means receiving Him as Lord. True salvation is always accompanied by a transformed allegiance. Apart from that total surrender, we have no hope of true salvation.
This article was adapted from a section of Compassion Without Compromise: How the Gospel Frees Us to Love Our Gay Friends Without Losing The Truth (Bethany House Publishing, a division of Baker Publishing Group, 2014), and is used with permission.
For more resources, visit www.bakerpublishinggroup.com.