Romans 1

rom-1.jpgGreetings!

I encourage you to read this chapter very closely.  I refer to often as it has such relevance to our culture and to contemporary issues.

Paul packs a lot into his opening.

  • He was specifically called to be an apostle (one who saw Jesus and carried his message).
  • He is Jesus’ servant.
  • He is sharing the Gospel foretold in the Old Testament.
  • Jesus has two natures: Human and divine.
  • Jesus was resurrected from the dead.
  • Jesus came for the Gentiles as well as the Jews.
  • More!

1 Paul, a servant of Christ Jesus, called to be an apostle and set apart for the gospel of God— 2 the gospel he promised beforehand through his prophets in the Holy Scriptures 3 regarding his Son, who as to his human nature was a descendant of David, 4 and who through the Spirit of holiness was declared with power to be the Son of God by his resurrection from the dead: Jesus Christ our Lord. 5 Through him and for his name’s sake, we received grace and apostleship to call people from among all the Gentiles to the obedience that comes from faith. 6 And you also are among those who are called to belong to Jesus Christ.

7 To all in Rome who are loved by God and called to be saints:

Grace and peace to you from God our Father and from the Lord Jesus Christ.

Paul’s Longing to Visit Rome

8 First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for all of you, because your faith is being reported all over the world. 9 God, whom I serve with my whole heart in preaching the gospel of his Son, is my witness how constantly I remember you 10 in my prayers at all times; and I pray that now at last by God’s will the way may be opened for me to come to you.

Do we display the kind of faith that is worthy of being reported around the world, or even around the block?  Are we serving God with our whole hearts and spreading his Good News?

11 I long to see you so that I may impart to you some spiritual gift to make you strong— 12 that is, that you and I may be mutually encouraged by each other’s faith. 13 I do not want you to be unaware, brothers, that I planned many times to come to you (but have been prevented from doing so until now) in order that I might have a harvest among you, just as I have had among the other Gentiles.

No matter how strong our faith is, encouragement is vital.  There are many times when I’m weighed down and someone will come along with an encouraging word to pick me up.  When I see other people living out their faith it inspires me.  You are not alone!

14 I am obligated both to Greeks and non-Greeks, both to the wise and the foolish. 15 That is why I am so eager to preach the gospel also to you who are at Rome.

16 I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile. 17 For in the gospel a righteousness from God is revealed, a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: “The righteous will live by faith.”

V. 16 is powerful.  In light of eternity, why should we be ashamed of the Gospel?  The world hates the Gospel, because it convicts them of sin.  The Gospel is for everyone.  There is no other path besides Jesus.

This next section, which I put in bold, speaks volumes about why everyone should know there is a God.  Note how it says that, “God has made it plain to them . . . God’s invisible qualities . . . have been clearly seen . . . so that men are without excuse.”   People who think they’ll claim ignorance when facing God at their death are horribly mistaken.

God has revealed himself to us in his creation.  He takes it very seriously when people mock that and completely ignore him.  Deep down even atheists know there is a God, but they “suppress the truth by their wickedness.”

Theologian R.C Sproul said, “Sin is cosmic treason. Sin is treason against a perfectly pure Sovereign. It is an act of supreme ingratitude toward the One to whom we owe everything, to the One who has given us life itself.”

God’s Wrath Against Mankind

18 The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of men who suppress the truth by their wickedness, 19 since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. 20 For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse.

Note how it repeats God “gave them over . . .” three times.  Consider how fully our society has turned sexual morality upside down.  It calls evil good and good evil.  Homosexual behavior is not only accepted but glorified.

This is one of the clearest passages denouncing homosexual behavior as sinful.  Some will try to read something into the text that simply isn’t there and claim that this was only about temple prostitutes, but there are many reasons that is wrong, starting with the fact the text doesn’t mention temples, prostitutes, or temple prostitutes.

21 For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools 23 and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like mortal man and birds and animals and reptiles.

24 Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. 25 They exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen.

26 Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural relations for unnatural ones. 27 In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed indecent acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their perversion.

Some pro-gay theologians try to spin verses 26-27 to mean that it is only a sin to act outside your “normal” preferences – that is, if you are naturally gay then the sin would be to have heterosexual sex.  If that sounds ridiculous to you, it should.  The original Greek means natural function, which of course would mean male/female relationships are the norm and homosexual relationships are sinful.  See Responding to Pro-Gay Theology for more information.

Romans 1 shows how the world is upside down and how people suppress the truth in unrighteousness and reject God, even though He is seen through his creation.  Then Paul offers exhibit A as an example of people rejecting God’s created order: Homosexual behavior.

28 Furthermore, since they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, he gave them over to a depraved mind, to do what ought not to be done. 29 They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice. They are gossips, 30 slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents; 31 they are senseless, faithless, heartless, ruthless. 32 Although they know God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them.

The Holy Bible : New International Version. 1996, c1984. Grand Rapids: Zondervan.

Before people grandstand on the sin of homosexual behavior, they should note the other things Paul listed as being seriously wicked: Envy, greed, deceit, arrogance, heartlessness, disobedience to parents, etc.  Trust me, if you re-read the list you’ll find yourself in there somewhere!

People know better, yet they shake their fists at God anyway.  I thank God that He took me from rebellion against him to faith in him.  It is only by his grace that I am a believer.  I pray that many people will read his Word, be convicted and turn to him for forgiveness and salvation.

What parts of this chapter stood out to you and why?

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0 thoughts on “Romans 1”

  1. remember concerning our ability to witnesswhat is of the holy spirit(1) at creation god deemed our essence to be very good. in spite of our sin he has never withdrawn that.(2) we were created thru the spirit of christ(3) he gave us a heart of flesh(4)he wrote the spirIt of his laws on our hearts(5)the triune god lives in us.

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  2. John, what happens when you say the Holy Spirit tells you “A” and I say the Holy Spirit tells me the “opposite of A?”

    My answer would be to consult the Bible and work from there.

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  3. the one thing i dont hear from you is personal witness. i hear impressions and understandings but no personal witness. i would like to hear your personal witness regardless of what it supports.

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  4. God has not given me any special revelation about the morality of homosexual behavior. If I did have such a revelation, I would compare it to scripture and then let the Biblical view decide. Satan is the father of lies, and he has deceived many on this issue. From the beginning he would say, “Did God really say that . . .?”

    I have known many gays and the behavior typically is self-destructive. They were usually wounded souls. You could see it in their eyes.

    Those that support pro-gay theology usually deny all sorts of essentials of the faith. That dramatically reduces their credibility with me (I’m not saying you are in that camp).

    I played on a volleyball team with one guy for a few years. He died of AIDS. I wish he had made better choices.

    If the Bible didn’t say so clearly that sex is for one man and one woman in a marriage then I could care less if gays married. I’m just being true to God’s Word.

    When I see that people feel the need to campaign to encourage gays to use condoms for sex I think it is symptomatic of their pathology. Does someone really have to persuade them to use them?

    I have also experienced people who pretended to be gay Christians. But after a while they admitted to being atheists. But they still went to church and played the game.

    I also know of a gay Christian who pretends to be quite orthodox in his beliefs and hangs out at a lot of conservative Christian blogs. Yet on his own blog he wrote of “gay camping” and being naked in a pool of dozens of guys. Monogamous or not, that is pretty bizarre behavior – hanging out naked with someone of the sex you are attracted to.

    I’m not saying all gay Christians are fakes like this, but please don’t expect me to get all choked up just because some people put on a veneer of holiness.

    Here are some thoughts I posted in a recent series.
    —-
    While I firmly believe that homosexual behavior is a sin, I do not think it is something we should grandstand on. We all have temptations and stumble and fall at times. Romans 1 explains in no uncertain terms that homosexual behavior is an affront to God, but it also lists greed, gossip, deceit and other things as serious sins.

    Do homosexuals have a legitimate complaint when they point out how many Christians are softer on divorce, adultery and pre-marital sex than they are on homosexual behavior? Yes. Grandstanding on sins that aren’t a temptation for us and downplaying or ignoring sins that are a temptation is not a Christian thing to do. But the lesson is to hold consistent Biblical views on all sins, not to water things down more. We need to raise the bar back up on all these sins because they have huge consequences and, more importantly, because that is in line with what the Bible says.

    We shouldn’t call evil good and good evil. I support the Methodist position on homosexuality, which regards the behavior as sinful but the people as having worth. I think it should be illegal to abort babies just because they might be homosexual (Ironically, that position puts me at odds with many liberals whose support for abortion is such that they think it should be legal under any circumstances). I mention these things simply to pre-empt any nonsensical allegations that I am homophobic.

    I also believe that it is a forgivable sin and can be overcome by the power of the Gospel. When I meet gays I don’t view it as my job to change them. I treat them like I would anyone else, developing relationships and hoping to be able to share the Gospel with them at some point. The real work is the job of the Holy Spirit.

    I was sharing the Gospel with a young man once who happened to be gay. He was all over the place with his religious beliefs and questions. At one point he asked, “Doesn’t the Bible say homosexual behavior is a sin?” I could have glossed over it and said it was a debatable matter, but that wouldn’t have been true or loving.

    I also could have spent an hour explaining all the verses around this topic, but that would have been overkill. Instead I just confirmed that yes, the Bible does say it is a sin despite how some try to twist it. Then I just shifted back to the basic Gospel – namely, that we are all sinners in need of a Savior and Jesus is that Savior. It was a great back-and-forth conversation on a lot of topics and I pray that it planted a seed and that the young man kept searching.

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  5. i wasnt clear about where your interactions took place. was it as a congregate of the same church, being part of some ministry at where you work., or as a neighbor.

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  6. Lots of places – work, CareNet, church (The choir director lived with his boyfriend, among others. We got along well.), blogging, the gym, general public, etc.

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  7. I was sharing the Gospel with a young man once who happened to be gay. He was all over the place with his religious beliefs and questions. At one point he asked, “Doesn’t the Bible say homosexual behavior is a sin?” I could have glossed over it and said it was a debatable matter, but that wouldn’t have been true or loving.

    what was he sharing with you?

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  8. the concept of fellowship isnt just that we have something to share with another but that the other person has something to share with us as well and that both sharings are god breathed.

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  9. He was sharing his perspective, which was very confused (he was in high school). I had zero reason to think his sharings were God breathed. In fact, the Bible claims that all scripture is God breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness. But it never even hints that everything anyone says – and especially not non-Christians – is God breathed. Even Peter got things wrong post-Pentecost.

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  10. Hi John,

    In this sense of being friendly and having some similar interests, yes.

    What does that have to do with what the Bible says about homosexual behavior? Do you have to have fellowship with adulterers before assessing whether that behavior is sinful?

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  11. i guess there is a disagreement between us. i wouldn’t attempt to bring up the issue of a sin to a brother in christ, unless i had first established fellowship relationship between us………………..mutual love and trust.

    if i wasnt going to bring it up, i would fellowship with him like it was non existent.

    to fellowship with him i have to look at him as god created him, speak to and interact with that essence and that person

    i cant possibly do that if i remain focused on a perceived sin.

    im looking at what god created, im looking thru any sin ……….. i no longer see it.

    because 1john1 says that in fellloowship we are protected by the blood of christ, i dont have to be defensive.

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  12. John, thanks for the clarification. For the record, I don’t bring up particular sins with anyone I witness to. In fact, I’ve never brought up the topic to a gay person. When sharing the Gospel I take the approach that we all have countless sins against a perfect and Holy God and that no amount of good deeds can earn our way back to him. It is by repenting and believing that we are saved.

    But if I really care about people I won’t lie to them about what is sinful. And I definitely won’t “affirm” others to defy clear Biblical teachings.

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  13. i dont know if i got an answer to this. 1thess 5:21 test everything keep the good. what is your test or testing process.

    we know that all law requires interpretation………….that is why we have the courts. in jesus time women and children were property and there was no concept about the individual or individual opinion, and slavery was an acceptable method for the distribution of wealth. if you spoke the wrong thing before the wrong group you could be killed on the spot(the attempt’s that were made to stone christ…… stoning of steven)

    in regards to understanding the “more” that jesus has to tell us(john16), holy spirit is our court……………….john16: 12″I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear. 13But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth.

    romans12:2Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.

    one goes to court to challenge the old understanding of a particular law. the new challenge offers reason and facts or evidence. the court weighs these things. sometimes the old understanding will continue to stand. at other times the old understanding is considered unconstitutional and deemed come against the spirit of the understanding of the constitution.

    what is your understanding about testing? do you test? what is the court, that you take your test to?

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  14. Hi John,

    I addressed the John 16 passage above but I’ll repeat it here: The answer lies in the context. Who is Jesus talking to here? The Disciples. He was saying that He would send the Holy Spirit to them. He did so at Pentecost. He guided them into all truth. They or their close followers documented it in the New Testament. It did not result in any moral laws being changed. It did not mean that God would change his moral law in the late 20th / early 21st century and only reveal it to liberal theologians in the West.

    Re. my testing process: I compare things to the Word of God, just as the Bereans were lauded for doing in Acts 17:11: “Now the Bereans were of more noble character than the Thessalonians, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true.”

    That is my test. The Bible is the “final court of arbitration,” so to speak.

    Romans 12:2 is one of my favorite verses. But how does God transform us? Through his Word. Jesus said in John 17:17 “Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth.” And 2 Timothy 3:16-17 says, “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.”

    Please read those passages carefully.

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  15. you did tell me this before and i apologize for your having to repeat it.

    my next question would be?

    what other scripture validates that jesus is only speaking to the apostles and not to us as believers as well? what other scripture says that our relationship with the holy spirit is not direct, but thru the knowledge passed down thru the apostles

    what is your understanding of paul in romans in regard to your understanding of john 16?

    romans 7:6But now, by dying to what once bound us, we have been released from the law so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit, and not in the old way of the written code.

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  16. Hi John,

    No problem, these comments start to run together sometimes and I can’t remember what has or hasn’t been said.

    Re. Romans 7:6 – Here are my notes from my post on Romans 7 (currently at the top of this blog): There is big difference between trying to win God’s approval by doing good things (a hopeless plan) and doing good things out of our love and thankfulness for him – not to mention our faith that what He says in his law is best for us.

    When read in context Romans 7:6 isn’t saying we shouldn’t follow the law. We are freed from the punishment of the law and now have the ability as Christians to overcome sin. To read anything Paul said as a license to sin would be a serious error. In John 14:21 Jesus said, “Whoever has my commands and obeys them, he is the one who loves me. He who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love him and show myself to him.”

    John, even if Jesus wasn’t just speaking to the Apostles in John 16, which I think the context shows, it would be a misreading of the text and the NT to conclude that the Holy Spirit will give us individual revelations of alleged changes in his moral laws.

    Let me turn this around and ask you something. What examples do you have of God giving special revelation to people that any of his moral laws have been done away with? I am not aware of a single one. If you can find one, how was it communicated? To whom? What was the context?

    And even if there were Biblical examples, how would we decide today if there are differences of opinion? How do we know who is guided by the Holy Spirit and who is guided by the father of lies? Again, I say we go back to scripture as Acts 17:11 and other passages recommend.

    Have you read the Book of Jude lately? It is only about a page long but deals with a lot of the issues we have discussed.

    If you haven’t already, please read adding to the Bible where I addressed the problems with that view.

    Peace,
    Neil

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  17. im still processing jude.

    as far as john 16 goes we know not only does the holy spirit live in us but he father and son as well.

    that being the case why would we not believe that the holy spirit communicates with us directly.

    how are to pick up our cross And follow christ daily accept thru a one on one personal relationship.

    how are we to be bound to his easy yoke if have do not have a one on one personal relationship.

    isnt that, what we bring to the body to serve each other?

    yes in his worldwide church he has given us anointed teachers……………………..we know they are anointed teachers because in fellowship they affirm everything that we have in our one on one relationship with christ.
    im reading “under the banner of heaven” by krakauer its about utah’s LDS. part of the history of mormonism(esp fundamental mormonism) is that individuals declare themselves as agents from god….and the start postulating all kinds of prophesies……… from his 14 year old person is to be my wife, to this person needs to be excommunicated from the group, to in extreme cases god wants us to execute this person…………… and if you aren’t in complete obedience to these and to me, you will go to hell.

    totally unscriptural.

    but in every incidence of violation, they were without embracing the fruit of the spirit and without any spirit of fellowship. rather than embracing romans 12,………… 3For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you………….and 9Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. 10Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves……………………………..THEY WERE FILLED WITH NARCISSISM.

    on the other hand, my gay brothers in christ who say that their orientation is from god …………………..,lift up the gospel, worship and serve christ by living out romans 12, and embrace the fruit of the spirit of galatians.

    like i said before i never heard a inmate stand up in fellowship say my raping and stealing affirmed me.

    or an adulterous brother say that violation of my vows affirms me.

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  18. Hi John,

    I think there are two errors at work here.

    1. Pro-gay theologians invented a trait of the Holy Spirit that is not in the Bible. You have supplied zero examples of the Holy Spirit reversing a moral law and making it a sin to teach the repealed law. The Holy Spirit does many things but that is not one of them.

    2. They also invented a concept of “affirming” that somehow not only sanitizes sin but makes it holy. That is also nowhere to be found in Scripture.

    Read Leviticus 18 and consider how many of those sins could be rationalized away by tossing the word “affirming” in.

    Thanks for checking out Jude. It is a short book but full of wisdom on false teachings.

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  19. 1. Pro-gay theologians invented a trait of the Holy Spirit that is not in the Bible. You have supplied zero examples of the Holy Spirit reversing a moral law and making it a sin to teach the repealed law. The Holy Spirit does many things but that is not one of them.

    you are absolutely right. how could the holy spirit say that murder wasnt a sin. or that stealing wasnt a sin.

    your contention is that, at some time homosexuality was a mortal sin because of gen and lev. i’ve already mentioned that in lev., not all that was prohibited was of itself a sin.

    Hi John – I don’t think I said it was a “mortal” sin, but a sin. It was serious in the sense that the theocratic punishment was quite severe. It was a moral sin, if that is what you mean. Look at the rest of the sins in Lev. 18. Or try Leviticus 19:18 – is that not a moral law? (“‘Do not seek revenge or bear a grudge against one of your people, but love your neighbor as yourself. I am the Lord.”)

    and rape is a mortal sin, regardless of the orientation.

    but in lev if it is a mortal sin, then the essence of the spirit of homosexuality has to come against the spirit of christ and the fruit of the spirit. what is that essence?

    I’m not sure where you are getting this distinction about “essence.” What is unclear about the command? I suppose it helps to understand why God said not to commit this sin, but even if we don’t understand we should obey.

    we know that murder is premeditatively taking of another man’s life for personal gain. stealing is taking something owned by another. for homosexuality to be mortal sin it has to be violation of another human being. that’s a mortal sin. what is the violation, where there is mutual attraction, love, and respect between two people.

    Adding sex to a loving relationship doesn’t improve it, except in the case of a marrige man and woman.

    many of my brothers in christ believe two men exposing themselves to each other’s fecal matter(inspite of the fact that heterosexual sex involves the similar exposure) and anal penetration are evidence enough. the problem with this is that heterosexual couples practice anal sex, without condemnation. and however unhealthy as homosexual sex may appear, whatever health issue may arise, it can be dealt with, through safe sex practices.

    If the invention of condoms is one of your proof points that this behavior is no longer sinful then you may want to reconsider your views. Are you saying that God only considered it a sin if protection wasn’t used? Is heterosexual adultery not sinful if condoms and pills are used? Perhaps I am misunderstanding your point here.

    mark 7:14Again Jesus called the crowd to him and said, “Listen to me, everyone, and understand this. 15Nothing outside a man can make him ‘unclean’ by going into him. Rather, it is what comes out of a man that makes him ‘unclean.’

    what comes out of a brother in christ because he is a practicing homosexual that makes him unclean.

    I’m not sure how you drew the conclusion that this verse had anything to do with sanitizing homosexual behavior. Are you talking about oral / anal sex? Go back to the beginning of the chapter to pick up the context. Jesus is talking about how sins come from within, not without.

    2. They also invented a concept of “affirming” that somehow not only sanitizes sin but makes it holy. That is also nowhere to be found in Scripture.

    the point is, homosexuality cant be affirming if it is of the sin nature. how can the spirit be against itself. if a brother in christ says that something brings him peace and thru it he experiences christ’s love , then it is of god.

    i have witnessed these testimonies. i believe they are speaking the truth. it does affirm them.

    John, you are trusting in men and not God. You have made up a new rule that puts more faith in man’s “interpretation” of a message from God than in God’s Word. Your “evidence” is that people are comfortable with their sin. People are experts at rationalizing sin. Original sin started with Satan saying, “Did God really say that . . .” and that pattern continues today.

    I say this gently but firmly, but people like you who “affirm” them are part of the problem.

    yes, paul is speaking of sins committed through the expression of same sex, sexual relations, but that no more condemns the orientation than rape condemns heterosexuality. this becomes apparent when one examines terms in the verses of “abandonment”, “shame”, and “lust”. to say that romans is about condemning homosexuality is to say that the essence of homosexuality is “shame,abandonment,and lust”. its not. its about mutual attraction, love, and respect as witnessed by the trend in the lutherran church last weekend.

    John, that is nowhere to be found in the text. Please go back to the passage. I’ve mentioned it above so I won’t rehash it here other than to say they gave up the natural functions of women and had sex with men. Nothing was said about prostitutes or that it is ok if there is mutual love and respect. Leviticus, Romans, Genesis, etc. are crystal clear, as are all the passages about God’s ideal for marriage and parenting. It is only by inserting all sorts of distortions that one can justify pro-gay theology.

    this examination is no attempt to undermine a law. it is a testing process, the same way that a judge breaks down the written phrasing of a law to understand the spirit of the law’s intent.

    the overriding understanding about homosexuality, regardless if you are a believer or unbeliever is in the spirit of its essence……………………….. as explained in romans 1:20For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, BEING UNDERSTOOD BY WHAT HAS BEEN MADE, so that men are without excuse.

    what is the spirit of that essence?

    what is it that comes out of a brother in christ because he is a practicing homosexual that makes him unclean?

    I give up trying to understand what you mean by “essence.” That verse is primarily saying that God reveals himself to us in creation. Men and women are created for each other. Men having sex with men is like shaking one’s fist at God.

    Re. “what comes out” is merely that he is breaking the commands of God and of natural law. When we break God’s laws we sin. Telling something that sin is not sin is a sin itself, regardless of how well the person has rationalized their sin.

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  20. i give up trying to understand what you mean by “essence.” That verse is primarily saying that God reveals himself to us in creation. Men and women are created for each other. Men having sex with men is like shaking one’s fist at God.”

    i would not expect otherwise. if you understood about the essence of the spirit of sin or the spirit of christ, you would abandon your homosexuality being a sin concept.

    the thing about spirit is, that this is what we battle against(powers and principalities) and not flesh and blood.

    John, your reference to Ephesians 6:10-12 is out of context. He is saying that our ultimate adversary is Satan, but it is not saying we don’t still have a sinful nature. Either way, how does this eliminate homosexuality from being a sin? What other things does your “essence” reasoning take from being sinful to being positive?

    paul says we are led by the spirit and we are to serve it in a new way.

    romans 8:
    13For if you live according to the sinful nature, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live, 14because those who are LED BYl the Spirit of God are sons of God. 15For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship.[a] And by him we cry, “Abba,[b] Father.”

    “not in the old way of the written code.”

    it would be hard for me to understand sin, without understanding the essence of the spirit of sin. romans 1 and galatians 5 explains this.

    it is my opinion that you limit romans 1. what paul is doing is describing the essence of all sin. it is so inclusively descriptive of human kind, that it obviates that we need of a savior, because we are so lost.

    that’s why in romans 2 paul says our judgement of others condemns us, because we do the very same things.

    I’m not sure I follow. Are you saying that nothing is sinful, so therefore homosexual behavior is not sinful? How does Romans 8 say we don’t still sin? Living according to the spirit can give us power over sin . . . but note that it is still sinful if we do those acts.

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  21. 1john1:8If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. 9If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. 10If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word has no place in our lives.

    WHEN we thru grace allow ourselves to be lead by the spirit as opposed to by our sin nature we do not sin.

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  22. I’m OK with that. Then by definition, if someone is sinning then they are not being led by the Spirit.

    Just because someone says they are being led by the Spirit doesn’t mean they really are.

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  23. matt 7:16By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? 17Likewise every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. 18A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit.

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  24. im not going anywhere by my own intent im being led by your questions

    that’s what romans one explains that in relationship our sin evolves.
    romans 1 21For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened.
    the book of eccl is a good example. rather than give thanks for all the elements of life, the author tries to get meaning from it.

    we struggle daily to give thanks for all the aspects of our lives .but instead thru our own understanding, say this of god, this isnt depending on whether it causes suffering and discomfort. to merely say the words has little bearing as does, thru grace and faith, living in a relationship of thanks. and glorification of god.

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