Eyes That See

“I Once Was Blind”

Compassion.

This is an email that I just sent to the website http://www.godhatesfags.com, website of Westboro Baptist Church in Topeka, KS. The church is known for picketing funerals with outrageous signs, such as the one for which they named their site: “God Hates Fags.”

First let me say that I think you guys are absolutely right.  God has a hatred for homosexuals.  A hatred that will end with them spending eternity in hell if they do not repent and put their faith in Jesus Christ as their Lord, Savior, and Forgiver of sins.  1 Corinthians 6:9-10 would support us in this regard:  “Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.”

So not only does God hate homosexuals, but He also hates all people who unrepentantly sin.  But keep reading:

“And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God” (1 Corinthians 6:11).

From this it seems that some of those that Paul was writing to in the Corinthian church may have been homosexuals before coming to faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.  Is this not the end that we hope for, brethren?  That they will turn from their homosexuality and be “sanctified” and “justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God?”

You and I may not have ever engaged in homosexuality, but James tells us that if we are guilty of any sin, then we are transgressors of the law.  And he tells us to speak and act “as those who are to be judged under the law of liberty.”  Why?  Because “judgment is without mercy to one who has shown no mercy. Mercy triumphs over judgment” (James 2:8-13).

I admire that you guys speak boldly as you ought to about the truths of the Word of God.  However, I fear that the way that you do so may cause people to reject the Truth- not because of the Truth itself, but because of the offensively outspoken manner that you employ in proclaiming it.

The goal is not only to proclaim the Truth, the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ, but also to proclaim it in a way that will lead sinners to repent and believe. 

Where is the compassion of Moses in Exodus 32:32?  Where is the compassion of Paul in Romans 9:3?  We will all stand before God on the ultimate Day of the Lord.  James tells us that those who do not show mercy will not receive mercy.  When we stand before God, we will all be found wanting- but for the precious blood of Jesus Christ our Lord. 

You who have received mercy and forgiveness by that blood begrudge the mercy of God by turning away from the God who has cancelled your debt and turning to whip your servant for not being able to pay his debt (Matthew 25:14-30).

One last point: Jesus told us that the world will know we are his disciples if we have love for one another (John 13:35).  He also told us to love our enemies and pray for those who persecute us (Matthew 5:44).  Belief in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior should make us look different from the world- moreso than it does in most churches.  However, what sets us apart should be first our love for one another, and second that we love our enemies and pray for those who persecute us.

I would love to hear your thoughts on these texts, and where picketing funerals with outrageous (albeit true) signs is encouraged by Jesus or His apostles.

Humbly,
David Hamilton

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June 2, 2008 - Posted by | Christ, Christian, Christianity, Life, Religion | , , , , ,

9 Comments »

  1. Dude, since when has God been associated with “hatred.” That is a powerful word. I am shocked that you sign your blog “humbly” when you use these powerful terms in association with God.

    On another note, can you write a post on how only lukewarm believers can overcome being so completely and utterly turned off by all the “He/Jesus/God/Almighty” terminology used? I think there is real need in some parts of the country (see Bible Belt…small towns…like where I am from) for people to relax a little and for them not to shove religion down people’s throats. It doesn’t work like that.

    Just some thoughts.

    Comment by Jen | June 2, 2008 | Reply

  2. Nice blog.Keep up with the good work!

    Comment by Loan holder | June 2, 2008 | Reply

  3. Great letter. These people are so filled with hatred that I doubt they get past the first paragraph or two (especially since they are KJVO)

    Comment by Polycarp | June 2, 2008 | Reply

  4. “He who is without sin, throw the first stone.” JC

    Comment by a pale squatty white woman | June 2, 2008 | Reply

  5. Jen,

    I will use the same verse that the folks at WBC use to justify discussing God’s hatred, but I will balance it with probably the most famous Bible verse ever:

    Malachi 1:2-3-
    http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=malachi%201:2-3;&version=47;

    “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” -John 3:16

    So if I were to discuss God’s hatred for homosexuals with somebody from WBC, then I would say that God does indeed hate those who unrepentantly sin against His glory. (And I think that something that Mark Driscoll said about reconciling God and anger has been the most helpful for me: He said that if you imagine God looking down on this world with all of its murder, rape, etc. and not being angry, then God is unjust).

    But I would argue that WBC makes a tremendous error in leaving the discussion at God’s anger. I would say that God does hate homosexuals. But He also created them in His image, and He so loved them that He sent His Son to die for them, so that if homosexuals believe in the Son of God and repent of their sins (including but not limited to turning away from homosexuality), they will not perish but have eternal life.

    Comment by bigham | June 2, 2008 | Reply

  6. Polycarp,

    love the name by the way! Polycarp of Smyrna was amazing, huh?

    And their angry responses moved me to send the email. A pastor sent them a message, and they very undeservedly called him “Lying Whore False Prophet” in their response. They made fun of another guy who had some errors in his message, so I thought I would try to send them a careful, Biblical message just to see if/how they would respond.

    Glad you enjoyed what I wrote!

    Comment by bigham | June 2, 2008 | Reply

  7. Loan holder,

    Thanks for the encouragement! Glad you enjoyed it!

    Thanks to you too, “pale squatty white woman!”

    Comment by bigham | June 2, 2008 | Reply

  8. Interesting little note, Hambone.

    I find it sad that Jen’s first comment assumed God and “hatred” were mutually exclusive. American Christians need to meditate on the Word a bit.

    Psalm 5:5 – “The boastful shall not stand before your eyes; you HATE all evildoers.”

    Psalm 11:5 – “The LORD tests the righteous, but his soul HATES the wicked and the one who loves violence.”

    Psalm 97:10 – “Oh you who love the LORD, HATE evil!”

    Isaiah 61:8 – “For I the LORD love justice; I HATE robbery and wrong.”

    Malachi 1:3, Romans 9:13 – “but Esau I have HATED”

    Anyway, I think you have a valid point that God HATES sin. The problem with spreading that message today, in my opinion, is that our American culture is so turned off by such absolute language that even the Church gets caught up in trying to not be offensive.

    Well, bad news, America. The Word is pretty offensive to a sinner’s heart. So while the language might be rough – and as Christians we should always seek to convey these messages with love for our God and our neighbors – the ideas that 1) God HATES sin and 2) Homosexuality is a sin are valid and true.

    It stinks that the crazies like Whitesboro give other hardline Christians a bad rap, but we can only soldier on.

    Comment by Kates | June 3, 2008 | Reply

  9. My big brother, who gave his life for our country, never liked to hear John 3:16 without including verse 17….

    Comment by Gramzee | June 4, 2008 | Reply


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