reetings to you in the name ofour Lord Jesus Christ.This pamphlet is intended to help Christians answersome questions about homosexuality.The churchrecognizes this as both a signiﬁcant challenge and,moreimportantly,as an opportunity to speak the truth in love,reach-ing out with the Gospel ofour Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
What does God say about homosexuality in His Word,the Bible?
The Lord teaches us through His Word that homosexualityis a sinful distortion ofHis desire that one man and onewoman live together in marriage as husband and wife.Godcategorically prohibits homosexuality.Our church,TheLutheran Church—Missouri Synod,has declared that homo-sexual behavior is “intrinsically sinful.”Why does our churchtake this position?We read in God’s Word the following statements abouthomosexuality:“You shall not lie with a male as with a woman;it is anabomination.… Do not deﬁle yourselves by any ofthesethings”(Lev.18:22,24).“Ifa man lies with a male as with a woman,both ofthemhave committed an abomination…”(Lev.20:13).“For this reason God gave them up to dishonorable pas-sions.Their women exchanged natural relations for unnatural,and the men likewise gave up natural relations with womenand were consumed with passion for one another,men com-mitting shameless acts with men and receiving in their ownpersons the due penalty for their error”(Rom.1:26–27).“Do not be deceived;neither the immoral,nor idolators,nor adulterers,nor sexual perverts …shall inherit the king-dom ofGod”(1 Cor.6:9–10).“…The law is not laid down for the just but for the lawlessand disobedient,for the ungodly and sinners,…immoralpersons,sodomites… and whatever else is contrary to sounddoctrine”(1 Tim.1:9–10).Through His Word,God teaches us very clearly that homo-sexuality is a sin.A person who persists in homosexualbehavior stands under the condemnation ofGod’s Word.Thisis true for anyone who persists in sin without repentance.While this may be an unpopular message,it is the truth taughtto us by God in His Word.
What is the church’s message to personswho are homosexual?
The church’s message to homosexual persons is the samemessage it proclaims to all people:Repent and believe theGospel!All human beings are born with a sinful nature thatresults in sinful thoughts,words and actions.Homosexuality isbut one ofmany sinful situations human beings encounter inthis life.From the moment we are born,all human beingsstand under God’s perfect judgement.All ofus,by nature,arelost and condemned sinners.We all need God’s mercy in Christfor our salvation.The church’s most important message to homosexuals isthe promise offorgiveness and eternal life through the personand the work ofJesus Christ.God sent His Son into this worldto live a perfect life on our behalf,and to die a perfect death asthe payment for all ofour sins.A statement regarding homosexuality from the LutheranChurch in Australia summarizes the church’s response tohomosexuality in a very helpful way:“The Church,whilerejecting on the one hand the movement which claims toler-ance ofhomosexual behavior in the name offreedom oftheindividual and ofmoral progress,must also resist the popularreaction ofpersecution and ostracism.“The Church must exhibit understanding and sympathyfor the homosexual,show love and pastoral concern,beingready to give help and encouragement in whatever way possi-ble.It must proclaim to homosexuals,as it does to all men,the judgment ofGod against sin,above all the forgiveness ofsin forChrist’s sake,and the possibility ofnew life through the powerofthe Holy Spirit.…”Another Lutheran pastor has written about homosexual-ity:“God is presenting to the Church a great challenge andopportunity.We can proclaim the Word ofGod in a clear andfresh manner.We can offer new hope to sinners whom Godloves.We can apply the Means ofGrace to another area of human need,so that sins can be forgiven and the Spirit’s poweremployed to create new life in Christ.”
What can Christians do for the families ofhomosexuals?
It is tempting to ignore the problems and challenges associ-ated with homosexuality.As God’s people,we are able to takeactions that demonstrate love and concern for homosexuals
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