Is Same-Sex Attraction a Sin?

Anytime I write about the ever-controversial topic of homosexuality, I anticipate and mentally prepare for some pushback. Everybody seems to have a strong opinion on this issue, and many are not shy about expressing those opinions (as long as they can do so behind a computer screen). Most of the time, the arrows of criticism are launched from the bows of gay-affirming unbelievers or theologically liberal “Christians” who believe God blesses same-sex relationships. However, there are exceptions.

Earlier this year, after one of my pieces was republished on the The Gospel Coalition’s website, most of the critical responses were composed by Bible-believing Christians who, like me, believe homosexual behavior is sinful. But, unlike me, they also believe merely experiencing same-sex attraction is a willful act of sin. A number of readers commended me for turning away from same-sex behaviors, but they also insisted that my ongoing struggle with same-sex attraction indicates that I am not sincerely and fully submitting myself to God. Some said God will not be pleased with me until my same-sex attraction ceases to exist.

Are they right? Is my mere experience of same-sex attraction a sin? Is it impossible for me to please God as long as these feelings persist?

My short answer is no; I don’t think these folks are correct. But neither do I think the common counterargument is correct. Many Christians insist there is nothing wrong with simply experiencing romantic and sexual desires for the same gender. They believe it only becomes a problem if you act on those desires. Homosexual behavior is wrong and sinful, they say, but the feelings, in and of themselves, are morally neutral. They see nothing wrong with having a “gay orientation.” Though I do lean more toward this camp’s position, I cannot fully embrace it.

Most Christians agree the Bible clearly teaches it is a sin to engage in homosexual behavior. But what does the Bible teach about homosexual feelings? Is it a sin to simply feel romantic or sexual attraction to the same gender? I think it can be. I do not believe a person commits sexual sin merely by experiencing an unintentional, spontaneous temptation to sin sexually. But I do think a person commits sin if they choose to lustfully entertain the tempting thought rather than crushing it by directing their mind’s attention to Christ.

The other day I was walking down the street and felt a spontaneous sexual attraction toward some guy I passed, but I immediately took that thought captive and slayed it by the power of the Spirit. I do not believe I sinned. Rather, I think I glorified God by triumphing in a moment of temptation. But what if I didn’t take that thought captive? What if I had let it flesh out, even briefly, into a lustful fantasy? Would I have committed a sin even though I technically did not “act”? Yes—absolutely! “Acting” is not necessary to constitute sin. It is totally possible to sin secretly within the thoughts and intentions of the heart. Just ask Jesus: “I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart.” – Matthew 5:28.

Jesus did not condemn feeling an unintentional, spontaneous temptation to sin sexually; he condemned looking with lustful intent. Lustful intent is the key phrase here. When I passed the guy on the street, my initial attraction to him was not intentional. It just happened! I crushed the thought by setting my mind on Christ and therefore do not believe I sinned. But had I intentionally continued to entertain that unintentional thought and allowed myself to lustfully fantasize, I would have sinned.

In summary, there is a difference between temptation and lust. Temptation is the unintentional experience of a spontaneous enticement toward sin. Temptation is not sin. Lust is intentionally allowing a temptation of sexual nature to fester and grow for one’s own perverted enjoyment. Lust is sin.

—-WARNING: Now treading into muddy waters!—-

However, was my initial attraction toward the man I passed on the street a natural or morally neutral experience? Is it comparable to a married man being instinctively attracted to a woman who is not his wife? I don’t think so. Though I do not believe merely and unintentionally experiencing homosexual desires constitutes a sinful act, I also do not believe it is a natural or morally neutral experience. Homosexual desire was not part of God’s initial design but came running in on the heels of Original Sin. It is utterly unnatural.

If Adam had never fallen and human nature had never been corrupted by sin, the temptation to commit homosexual acts (or heterosexual rape and heterosexual pedophilia) would not exist within human hearts. When Adam sinned against God, his nature was corrupted, and his descendants have inherited that corrupt nature. We are not born good or even morally neutral; we are “brought forth in iniquity” and “conceived in sin” (Psalm 51:5). Our sinful nature is the vile soil from which sexual perversities arise.

However, some would argue that Jesus, whose nature was not corrupted by sin, was tempted to commit homosexual acts because Hebrews 4:15 says “in every respect [he] has been tempted as we are.” If these people are correct, and Jesus really was tempted to commit homosexual acts, it logically follows that he was also tempted to commit every other kind of sexual sin, including heterosexual rape and pedophilia. However, it is my opinion that this verse does not mean Jesus was tempted to commit every sin that every fallen person is tempted to commit.

Concerning Jesus’ temptations, theologian Joseph Benson once wrote:

“What is here said of the similarity of our Lord’s trials to ours, does not imply an exact likeness; for he was free from that corruption of nature which, as the consequence of Adam’s sin, has infected all mankind.”

I do not believe the temptation experienced by Jesus (or Adam and Eve in their pre-fallen state) involved the temptation to commit same-sex acts. According to Paul, a refusal to love and worship God—two things Jesus never failed to do—preceded homosexual desire (Romans 1:21-27). Homosexual desire is a byproduct of the corrupt, sinful nature.

So what does this mean for people like me who experience this unnatural desire on a daily basis? Am I to live in a constant state of self-loathing turmoil, always lecturing myself about what a corrupt and worthless piece of crap I am? No! The good news of the gospel is that though I am thoroughly flawed, God loves me and sent his Son to save me from my corruption (please read this). Because God has made me alive together with Christ, I am no longer defined by my flesh and all the distorted desires within it. I am not the corruption that lies within me; I am the righteousness of God in Christ.

I believe my same-sex attraction will continue to dwindle in intensity as God continues to sanctify me. However, if my experience is anything like the SSA strugglers who have gone before me, it is probable that this pattern of temptation will persist at some level until I die or Christ returns. And until either of those days comes, I will cry out honestly and hopefully with the apostle Paul: “Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord!” – Romans 7:24-25

(Note: This is a revised version of an article I originally published on 05/04/2016) 

  • jmberman

    Love this version too.
    Agree, wholeheartedly.
    Wish I had written it, but still glad it was said.

  • mike

    “However, was my initial attraction toward the man I passed on the street
    a natural or morally neutral experience? Is it comparable to a married
    man being instinctively attracted to a woman who is not his wife? I
    don’t think so.”

    If homosexual temptation is worse than heterosexual temptation then it follows that homosexual sin is worse than heterosexual sin. And that’s what the church universal believes if not in theory it does in practice! But where is this distinction in Scripture? Sexual sin is bad whether homosexual or heterosexual. Certainly Paul makes no distinction in 1 Corinth. 6:18 and so the church should see its lustful heterosexual congregation likewise!

    To say that men before the expulsion from the garden had only “normal” temptations as you see heterosexual lust as “instinct” and therefore a normal temptation is curious. It’s like saying that Adam and Eve’s temptation to lust over the forbidden fruit is “natural” but Adam’s temptation to lust after Steve (who likely existed before the human race was ousted from the garden) as unnatural. I’m not sure the distinction is useful.

  • Regan DuCasse

    I really, really cannot let this one go by either. At one point matt is heterosplaining the differences between feelings and acts.
    Passing someone on the street, there are different ways of interpreting those feelings. But just passing someone, and then making a big deal out of squashing the feelings, or interpretation of those feelings: I don’t see how that’s cause for claiming some virtue by something so fleeting, let alone that wasn’t mutual.

    I am again disturbed by the conflation of heterosexual rape, or pedophilia with said feelings or acts, that might be acted on by someone gay towards another gender.
    May I remind people here that rape and pedophilia are not mutual in feeling or acts. They are non correspondent matters of one person’s obsessive, even compulsive ACTS towards another person that in every way is anti social and negative.
    As a woman, in the real world, I don’t always trust a male’s initial compliments or attitudes towards me on the street when I’m the one just passing.
    I can’t know if what their intention is for initiating anything.
    And of course, I wouldn’t know their feelings, without them communicating them to me. But there have been times I have been looked on as if I were a meal for a hungry wolf.
    So matt’s article here, while quite sophist, still doesn’t get at the heart of the double standards that confront any of us on the basis of gender and gender expression.
    Gay men don’t nearly give me the feeling of threat that hetero males do.
    And men to men, at least it can be rightfully assumed that the threat isn’t the same, nor what one can assess of it.
    This is part of the damage done by religious social standards concerning gender and trying to place it in unnatural, strictly binary segregation.
    I still maintain that the role of homosexuality and transgenderism plays a significant role in tempering all this lust that people here keep talking about.
    It makes sense that heterosexual men, learn from gay men what having relationships with females means, that IS non threatening.

    Has anyone here really considered that? That the relationship between heterosexual and their homosexual counterparts is how we complete each other’s needs and understanding.
    There is no enforcement of gender roles, but that the natural blurring between them allows for more ease between each other.
    All the emotional, intellectual, spiritual, and material benefits, without the sexual tension.
    THAT is what gay and hetero people can and have done for each other.
    And it’s a brilliant plan, that seems to elude ordinary mortals here.
    That’s how the Creator made us fit, anyone care to trade comments on that VERY likely scenario?

    • AnotherMike

      Though time is limited and road trips are many, Happy Thanksgiving and may your holiday time be filled with joy and memories worth holding. May you stay safe and may those to whom you call your own do as well.

      Future posts are forth coming.

      “I am just another Mike, just like some are another Joe.”
      Mike

      • Regan DuCasse

        Thanks so much. I hope the same for you.

  • Hi Matt,

    I think you did a fine job here of parsing what you me. And as a fellow theologically conservative Christian who has experienced the temptation and the lusting itself, I agree with you assessment. I’ve had to think through the same things just as you have.

    1.) Sexual acts between members of the same sex are categorically sinful.
    2.) Lusts or covetousness directed toward such sexual acts are sinful.
    3.) The tendency (concupiscence) toward such lusts is the result of radical corruption.

    However, since homosexuality or same-sex attraction can be (and is sometime officially defined as) a vague bleeding together of clearly nonsexual types of affections, questionably “proto-sexual” desires, and actual sexual desires or lusts, we should be assured that all of the following desires are not inherently sinful or homosexual for someone to experience:

    1.) a sense of protectiveness, watchfulness, or responsibility toward another
    2.) deeply moving compassion for their sufferings and injuries in life
    3.) kinship or camaraderie where we feel like family to them—a sort of bond
    4.) fondness and delight for their presence and yearning to be with them socially
    5.) aesthetic appreciation for their physical beauty and abilities
    6.) deep affection for their endearing and admirable character traits
    7.) a vague and non-specific intrigue or wonderment

    Matt Anderson does a good analysis of that last one here:
    https://mereorthodoxy.com/can-christians-gay-inquiry/

    Some of those things can serve as inroads for sexual covetousness, but none of them are in and of themselves such covetousness. They can also be inroad to others sorts of lusting as well, such as jealousy or possessiveness. The fact that some guys experience these things more profoundly for other guys than for gals shouldn’t be understood as signs of crypto-homosexuality like so many in our culture try to tell us that they are.

    I know for myself that there were times when my impression and experience in church community has implicitly misled me into thinking that all of these things where part of sinful covetousness. And thinking that I was supposed to freed by Christ from all of those affections used to make me really wonder and worry about what would be left of me as a person if all of that disappeared. Eventually, I realized I was calling things sin which were not sin and asking God to take away things that were good.

    My two cents.

    Aaron

  • Lyle Nelson

    All of us are sinful and imperfect. I believe the differences are in amount, type, and willfulness of the sin, which is reflected in our attempts to control it and repent of it. Where we have faith in our Savior, promptly repent of any sins of which we are aware, and honestly try to lead a holy life, then I’m not sure the type of sin matters very much. The type of sin is likely due to our natural propensities, as corrupted by original sin. What is or isn’t sin is not as important as our efforts to control it, whatever it might be, and lead a holy life.

    • mike

      I would agree. Lust is lust. Whether SSA’d lust or OSA’d lust. Both are sin equally so. The distinction is unhelpful and is why the church has failed SSA’d folk. Moreover, it does injustice for SSA’d fold to feel inferior to their OSA’d counterpart because somehow their lust is worse! Where is the biblical basis for that dichotomy? Muddy waters indeed.

      • P0xi

        Actually, lust is the feeling that leads to love.

        When you feel lust for a person, you are drawn to them. God designed this system so that when you see a person who seems perfect, you want to go up to them and say hello.

        No one is perfect, but lust makes it feel that way. And that’s ok. Looking for perfection isn’t a good idea, in a world without perfect people. Instead, lust helps us feel a strong desire for someone, and once we connect with them and become friends, we can begin to feel LOVE.

        LOVE is the greatest feeling in the world. It is better than lust. It is better than friendship.

        It is the ultimate feeling, and lust is part of that feeling.

        Do not denounce lust. On its own, yes, lust can be dangerous, but it is not a sin to feel things. To think that your natural feelings are wrong is a delusion. Don’t fall for it.

        God is in his heaven, and all is right with the world as it is.
        Do your best to live a good life.

        We don’t always need a Biblical basis for things. We just need faith in God, and faith in fellow humans. Controlling people or judging them is unwise.

        Humans should never use the word “sin”. You shouldn’t even say it.
        Only gods can tell what is sin, and what isn’t. For you to judge another person based on an ancient book is not wise. That book might be wrong, even if God is not wrong.

        Have faith, but be skeptical as well. You need to use the brain God gave you, or you will make friends with people who want to manipulate you, and become enemies with people who would be your greatest allies.

    • P0xi

      First, you must assume that God’s creation is perfect.

      But is it really? If it was perfect, why did it go wrong?

      I’d say it didn’t. It is perfect just how it is. All things are natural, and things that happen in this world are inherently natural.

      If it happens, it is natural. No matter your subjective view on it, it is natural.
      No matter if you approve or disapprove of a behavior, it is natural.

      Now, if you’re some sort of creationist, I’ve got no words for you. You’re basically so deep in a cult, that I don’t think we have anything in common.

      But if you understand evolution, you’d understand that life and death are both natural, and both are good. There is no evil in this world. To a human with such a short life, of course you’d see some things as evil or good.

      But the eyes of God see no evil. God sees this world as it truly is. He knows the past, he knows the future. He knows what you’ll do next week. He knows what you ate for dinner even 46 days ago. Even you can’t remember what you ate 46 days ago, but He can.

      I don’t think God sees this world as good or evil. That’s a human judgement.
      Gods see the world as it truly is, without instinct or flaw.

  • I have been wrestling with this for some time. I can’t always be on my guard. Sometimes I do slip, and I find myself looking at some guy. I don’t fantasize about having sex with them anymore. I have learned to control this through the Holy Spirt. I don’t beat myself up about it when I look instinctfully, like I used to. I am a child of God. I am neither worse than a straight adulter or worse than someone in a gay relationship. The only difference between me and them is that I have been redeemed by my Father.
    Great post Matt!

    • mike

      What’s hard is for the glance to turn into a stare for me. What’s bad is to berate myself for it. Instead, I acknowledge to myself — yes, the guy is gorgeous and God created beauty. I can delight in that 😊. But God didn’t make him for me to lust over. No, so I imagine a beautiful woman that God made for that good looking guy that might be his wife if he’s so inclined. For me, those truths are empowered by the Spirit because that really is the truth to me.

  • Benjamin Spratling

    While I agree with you that the “experience of same-sex attraction” is not a chosen sin, I disagree with the idea that there is “a same sex attraction” which is inherently erotic. Instead, I believe that “gay feelings” are merely erotic attraction which has been mixed with non-erotic and healthy same-sex attraction. There is no single, new, different “feeling” or “desire” that “gay men” experience. Instead, just the subconscious’s attempt to fulfill its necessary non-erotic sexual-identity needs with erotic activity. The micro-emotional responses associated with a PTSD trigger are present in that “spit second” between seeing a guy, judging him to be masculine, longing for the masculine and the learned response to approach him erotically. They can be exposed with expert psychological help, something unfortunately lacking in modern churches. I agree with you that this is not an act of conscious will, and also call you to seek true healing for this mix up. We are not called to leave ourselves in our broken state, but to work everyday for the healing and growing of our soul. 1 Peter 2:5-7. That is, of course, for those who arrived at this point by a deficiency of same-sex emotional connection. For others, mere sexual abuse can reprogram the physiological response in the same way it intends to bind a man to one wife. For others, the Solomon phrase about “living in the corner of a roof is better than living with a contentious woman” seems like the best biblical explanation! Modern American culture so devalues femininity that many women try to act like men just to feel accepted as a person. That leaves many men looking for their counterpart, and they can’t find it in feminists, so their mind identifies some other men as possessing their complement’s qualities. When I ask men who came into “gay feelings” via this route how they “see” women, and then share that list with “straight men”, the straight men tell me they know women like that and don’t find them attractive! But for the “straight man”, he knows this is just some women, while others are different, while the “gay” or “bisexual” man sees practically all women in that way, formed by their early and close experiences with women. When they heal this perception of feminism by experiencing non-erotic interaction with healthy women, their mindset alters, and they begin to teach their subconscious mind, which I suppose might map to either the biblical idea of ‘heart’ or ‘soul’ (if you have any leads on that, let me know!) that things are different.

    • Benjamin Spratling

      Of course, if I’m right, your subconscious is trying to tell you exactly what its missing by merely pointing out which men are attractive, and which parts of him are attractive. Maybe your judgement of “true masculinity” is off, maybe there are truly masculine qualities you believe you do not possess, or maybe there is simply a lack of fatherly affirmation and brotherly affection in your experience of these masculine qualities. “slaying it by the power of the spirit” may in fact be exactly what’s keeping you stuck in experiencing non-chosen “same sex attraction” instead of identifying and fulfilling those non-erotic needs. We’re not supposed to “abolish” arguments, not “desire”. But then that word “desire” gets muddled between “goals” and “strategies”. As Christians, we can be assured that our end goals are good and will be fulfilled, if we submit ourselves to God first, but our learned strategies may still be sinful lessons bouncing around in our bodies. I think confusion over this is why the Church has proven so inept at helping people heal from the various psychological traumas which lead to eroticizing same-sex attraction. When you saw this guy on the street, what about him attracted you? Was it his physique? Maybe your heart is trying to tell you it wants to work out more, or you have learned unrealistic standards of appearance. Was it his attitude? Maybe your soul is trying to tell you it wants to be accepted for its assertiveness, or strength? In my experience, the way out is inescapably tied to the way in, which is inescapably tied to the particulars of the attraction. If there’s one great lie that the corrupted church has taught, it’s that there is “a” single same-sex attraction that everyone who “feels gay” experiences, and that it has no components. Well, that and the lie that we’re not supposed to be kissing each other when we great each other at church… but that’s another debate…

  • Douglas Miguel Llanos

    Thanks for your Words… God bless you bro.

  • Michelle Krause

    Matt Moore – If you get a chance, look at a YouTube video of Kat Kerr on soul ties and soul clutter. I can attest to how loosing things from my soul and binding God’s love, peace etc., to my soul has had an amazing impact on my life. Praying for you.

  • Brian Amason

    As someone who has dealt with same sex attraction as long as I can remember, I couldn’t disagree with you more. I was taught that the feelings were disgusting, vile and corrupt. I was taught that homosexuality is not only a sin but an abomination and I was so ashamed of who I was.

    Almost two years ago, I decided that I was tired of living that lie. I was tired of telling myself (and everyone else) that I was not gay. I had done everything that I knew to do. I had fasted, prayed, gone to therapy, had accountability partners, and more to try to stop feeling the way I did. It doesn’t change and I don’t believe for one moment that my feelings are wrong. I believe the hate that you are spewing to tell people that they should be ashamed of who they are is wrong.

    I wish you the best in your journey and pray that you learn to lovingly accept yourself and others the way God created us.

    • mike

      I agree with you Brian. Feelings are not right or wrong. They just are. They point to some deeper issue which may be a reality or an unreality. It needs sorting out. And negative feelings are destructive and need addressing. Your post feels to me like you are at peace Brian. That’s a strong and healthy place 😊.

    • Jeannie Oakes Herod

      It is not hate to tell the truth, though it is counted so by those who wrestle with those feelings. You have told everything you did to try and overcome these same sex feelings, yet the most important thing was missing. Have you accepted Christ as your personal saviour? Have you acknowledged and confessed your sins to Him, accepted His forgiveness? If you have not, then all the fasting, therapy, etc. will do very little good. It is only through Christ that you can receive the cleansing power of His blood. As it is written in His Word, When you know the truth, then the truth will set you free. Will you still struggle with sin? Why sure, but you will now have an advocate with the Father, who stands ready to help you when satan comes against you with sinful thoughts, desires, etc. When you truly have Christ as your Saviour, then and only then will you have lasting peace. May God bless you to settle this matter with Himself.

      • Regan DuCasse

        “It’s not hate to tell the truth”.
        That’s a loaded one.

        Although I know the defense for it well, I went back over some miscegenation defenses from back in the early 40’s to now. It’s all information that I amassed as part of a literary project I’d been working on.
        How people worked out a divinely sanctioned rationale for segregation, (whether between the genders, or the colors), is the same defense to keep gay people from finding a life mate.
        But now, although the Bible is specific about gay people deserving to die, there is a new rationale for keeping them alive, but in a repressed state, all for the purpose of extending Christian influence and control.
        So the truth actually is: how is some reconciled, and not more, despite the same human progress and empirical experience that’s always advanced human societies to change with that progress?
        Well?
        How about NOT giving a Biblical reference for a change? I won’t accept one. Because that’s been done before.
        Try something else.

  • Eric Newsom

    I’ve heard it said the real sin of homosexuality isn’t so much homosexuality itself, but the sin of adultery/fornication. Because marriage is to be between a man and a woman according to the Bible, homosexuals are guilty of adultery.

    • P0xi

      Yes, but we don’t need to live based on the Bible.

      We need to live based on the ideals of God.

      Yeah, this is an unpopular opinion, but the Bible was probably manipulated in ancient Rome so that the old fashion way of living there, where it was ok to be bisexual, as in, have a wife AND a male “best-friend” lover, was ended.

      I highly doubt that God thinks of sex as evil. Sex isn’t evil. It’s not bad.
      It feels good, and it causes you to feel happiness and love, plus it brings about new life.
      A miracle.

      Of course, rape is still a terrible crime, but when a person says “I love you, let us make love”, then it doesn’t matter if they’re male/male or female/female or male/female.

      Love is what matters.

  • mike

    “Homosexual desire was not part of God’s initial design but came running
    in on the heels of Original Sin. It is utterly unnatural.”

    Lust of any kind was not part of God’s initial design.
    Singling out lustful SSA making it worse than lustful OSA is wrong. It is precisely why the church failed SSA’d people and still does! And it’s why SSA’d folk feel less Christian than their OGA’d counterparts. Your dichotomy of natural/unnatural is a false one and seriously unhelpful for the church to wake up to deal with all lust among its people. Singling out SSA’d folk as worse Christians is an unhelpful message Matt.

  • Racheal Bella

    Weather or not I agree with your point in this article I do commend you on not using personal subjective experience to rationalize your own behavior (which all Christians do). I would have been very easy for you (and helped you) to say “Yes, homosexual desire IS natural, yet still sinful”. Too many Christians not only excuse their own sin- but their propensity to that sin- which is sad. So on that- I support you. Though I would differ with you in viewing the temptation to be unnatural. That’s not for you (or us) to worry about. It is not God’s intention for babies to be born without arms- but it happens. How it happened is not for us to speculate. God allowed it. Spending time wondering “Am I natural or unnatural like this?” is in insult to the Creator who allowed you to be born that way. Overtime the baby can thank God he was born without arms or legs and not hold some hidden secret thought in the back of his mind about how wrong and unfair it is. God knows what he is doing. Do not act on your sexual desires but thank Him and praise Him for letting you be gay. It’s not like Satan pulled a fast one on God.

  • Daryl Bulych

    Anyone who has engaged in homosexual sexual activities will need to seek and undergo deliverance as many demons have entered in through that activity as is the case with any sexual sins. The continued sexual attraction signals the demons are still there and need to be cast out before the soul can be restored and healed. Also all soul ties created with each sexual partner need to be confessed and renounced and then spiritually broken. See Win Worley – Mass Deliverance on youtube.

    • Don’t know if I can remember all the guys I was with – had a stroke. Salvation is not based on works, it based on grace. I am thankful for this.

      • P0xi

        No, salvation IS based on works.

        You cannot simply say you are a good person.

        You must BE a good person if you want to be a good person.
        What you are not realizing is that to have grace, you must be a good person who does good things.

        Having grace will mean you live a life where you are kind to all people no matter what, where you forgive people for their harmful actions, and where you help those who need help, but only if they ask for it.

        Don’t try to control people, I mean.

        It is simply too convenient to think that a person can be rewarded for doing nothing.

        Life is not that easy, and nor is the after-life.
        You need to be a good person to be a good person.

        That is how it is.

    • In thinking about this post, I had to have some clarity of thought. My homosexual inclinations are not demon driven. It is a part of sin nature. If they were demon driven, then it would imply some special sort of sin, that I would not be guilty of. I could literally say “The devil made me do it.”, absolving me of any responsiblity. I am guilty of living a sinful life in the past. Jesus Christ forgave me of my sins. ALL of them. Not just the gay ones. The Holy Spirit gave me power of them, allowing me to be celibate for twelve years. Am I still tempted by sin? Absolutley! I’ll bet you are too. I have been given the choice to not act on my lusts, and I choose not too. This is a reality that I will have to live with until I go home or the Lord returns. No man I have ever met has been delivered from this desire fully. The one who came closest was ‘cured’ by not having any desire whatsoever. The thought makes him nauseous. But he still feels lust.

      • P0xi

        Instead of being celibate because you are in a religious cult, perhaps you should try to find love, and enjoy the pleasure of sex.

        Don’t have sex with strangers though.
        Find a man who will truly love you, and then love him back.
        There will be no children, which is sad, but there will be love.

        Love is something this world needs. End your celibacy in the name of love, and find a lover for yourself.

        It is time for you to stop being lonely. God is with you if you do this with truth and love in your heart.

        • Because of your lack of knowledge on who I am, I am giving you a link to my blog. It is an adventure, into places that are sometimes uncomfortable. It is my life and how I came to God. It is many posts, but to get the whole scope, read the whole thing.

          https://brokenbutredeemedblog.wordpress.com/2016/07/14/introduction/

          • P0xi

            I wonder if you have any idea who I am.

            I know everything about you. I know your story, your life, your past.
            I know your hopes and fears, and all the things that make you smile.

            I also know that you’re lying to yourself. You have not come to God.

            You have arrived at an illusion built by a dangerous political cult, one that wants to brainwash you into thinking that your innate desire are wrong, and their desires are right.

            What’s right for them is not right for you. As long as you follow Christian law, you are not following God’s law. You are following cult law, and you are making a very dangerous mistake.

            You only get this message so many times in life. I encourage you to understand what I’m saying, instead of playing the fool.

          • I don’t mind getting to know you. I am celibate, and hurting no one. If there is no God, then I have only hurt myself. But God is real…saw your comment on my blog…

    • Ernie

      You are partially right… that if you have joined sexually with another, then it is possible to have picked up some type of spirit as you have become one with your partner. This would be the case for heterosexuals as well who have engaged in sexual conduct. However, continued ssa is not a sign of demon possession and so I’d advise not believing every wind of doctrine posted on youtube. This idea also runs contrary to the fundamental teachings of sin and salvation in the Bible.

      First, It is clear from the scriptures that condemnation for all types of sexual immorality is for those “who live like this” or those who “practice” sin. Multiple times the Bible talks about those who’s lifestyles are immoral. (Leviticus 18:22; Galatians 5:21; Romans 8:13) The scriptures never condemn those who’s lifestyle is following Christ, especially if they should fall, repent and then get back on the path of God’s perfect will (see the Prodigals son).

      Next, we are told that you have already committed the sexual sin in your heart if you merely look at another and lust (Matthew 5:27-28). No where in the scriptures does it say that those who are being battled by the enemy are under condemnation, especially since Jesus Himself was also tempted by the devil. If fact, just the opposite is true. As believers are battled and remain victorious, it becomes a powerful testimony of God’s power to deliver and of the believer’s successful lifestyle utilizing the fruit of self control.

      So if you are not committing homosexual acts physically, and you are not looking lustfully at others and committing adultery in your heart with fantasies, but instead you have made Christ Lord of your life, then “There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit.” Romans 8:1

      There are a multitude of individuals such as myself, who didn’t actively participate in the homosexual lifestyle but still battled against ssa. I can personally testify about the life changing power of Jesus Christ in my own life, about Him delivering me from porn and ssa, and of seeing God move in my life in many ways. I can personally testify that after God delivered me from these afflictions, the enemy battled me in these areas even greater. He didn’t attack me with drugs or alcohol since those weren’t areas of past problems, but instead fought me with past thoughts, actions and feelings.

      Finally, these attacks can not only be the enemy reminding us of our past, bringing up images and past feelings, but also have physical/chemical/mental elements as well. The old adage “Garbage in, garbage out” tells us that, although you may have been delivered from an addiction such as porn and ssa, years of feeding your mind with sinful image and thoughts may still have consequences stretching past your deliverance. Many who get saved and delivered still carry the burden of social diseases long after their conversion for example.

      To be honest, I don’t know that I’ve ever met a true Christian who wasn’t being battled by the enemy. Some of the greatest men of God of all time had afflictions which kept them focused on God. If your not being battled, then you probably aren’t a Christian, you have embraced your sin, or perhaps you are spiritually anemic and not doing what God has planned for your life — in my opinion. Telling blood bought, born again, men of God who love Christ, who have rejected all sexual immorality, and are being bombarded by the enemy, that they have demons is not scripturally based and can be detrimental to the body of Christ.

  • Jeannie Oakes Herod

    I agree. All Christians are capable of committing all sin. This is why we must be careful what we allow our mind to entertain, be it a magazine, or movie, a friendship even. Anything which pulls us away from God and Christ – like behaviour, can be tossed into our minds by satan to tempt you to sin. You spoke correctly, when sinful or lustful thoughts or feelings come into our minds, instead of dwelling on them, we should immediately turn them over to Christ, who stands strongly to help us slay that dragon. We cannot do it alone, the Bible is clear on this. We need the help of our Saviour. Thank you for sharing your testimony. May God bless you as you continue your walk with Him.

    • P0xi

      No, I disagree.

      I think it is wise to think every thought through, all the way to the end.
      I don’t think trying to avoid thinking about things is healthy for your brain.

      If God puts a thought into your head, you must think about it. Why wouldn’t you?
      If you think about it, you’ll end up with an answer.

      If you don’t think about it, you will never know the truth. Honestly, I hate to use a mean name, but you’re a total moron if you deliberately avoid using your brain. No, that’s not an insult, that’s seriously what you are.

      You need to use your brain to think about things. Don’t take this religious stuff so seriously, ok? You need to get out of the house more, and see the world or something, because honestly, it sounds like you’re in a cult.

      Please think about forbidden things. It’s ok to think. If it’s wrong, then after thinking about it all the way through, you will find out it’s wrong. If it’s right, then you will find that answer as well.

      But you will never know if you do not think about it. Let all thoughts enter your head, and think each one through all the way to the very end. Don’t skip a single conclusion. Don’t miss any data.

      Do the math, look at the facts, think about the emotions and ideas, and find an answer that is true. Don’t just believe what people tell you.

      You NEED to think for yourself, or you are not a real person.
      You are a machine.

  • Great stuff, Matt! Everyone’s tempted by something — even the Bible-believing Christians you wrote about. Sexually, emotionally, mentally, physically — we all have a vice apart from Christ. But what do we DO with all those messy temptations? Christians: let’s cut to the chase already!

    Grateful for your added voice in these navigations with faith and homosexuality, Matt. Fighting the fight with you!

    • P0xi

      What do we do with temptations?

      Give in to your instincts. Live the life you want to live. Not a life that is just a lie. Virtue for the sake of virtue is just a band-aid. If something is a good idea, then it will appeal to us. All people want to do the right thing. Why would God even allow us to see good in evil?

      If it seems good and holy to my instincts, the instincts that go beyond just what I’ve been told in life, then I’ll accept that. NOTHING society teaches me will overcome my instincts.

      Yes, even the BIBLE is worth less than my instincts. The Bible is written by MAN.
      The one who held the pen to write the bible was a HUMAN, just like me or you, and that person might be wrong, a liar, or maybe he had evil in his heart, just enough to corrupt the word of God.

      My instincts are something that go beyond my education, beyond my religion, beyond societal law, beyond all things, and those instincts are my direct connection to God. There is no more powerful connection to my origin than my instincts.

      When my instincts say “This is good and right” or “This is truly evil”, I trust them. I don’t trust you, I don’t trust them, I don’t trust the Bible, nor do I trust Islam, I don’t trust Hinduism, I don’t trust the government, I don’t even trust myself and my logic.

      I only trust my heart. My instincts. My heart is open to God, and I will never try to hurt someone or manipulate them. I want the world to be a better place, and because of that, I fully trust my instincts to tell me what is good and right.

      And I will speak the truth: Sex is NOT evil. Sex is how we gain new life. There is nothing evil about creating life. Sex cannot be evil. Even GAY sex is not evil, if done with love and friendship in your heart.

      Every day on earth is hell for some people. They will take whatever pleasure they can get, and when they are ready, they will either feel love for a person, or they will still live their own life, and if you judge them, you are the one committing the greatest sin.

      I don’t judge, I will not be judged. I love everyone, no matter what.

      If you judge, you are telling someone that they are evil. If you think they are evil, then you can only hate them. You cannot love evil, can you? True evil is out there.

      True evil hurts people. True evil causes true harm. Not just some mythological “Sodom and Gomorrah” type harm. I’m talking about murder, rape, theft, beating people, manipulating them, cheating people, that sort of harm. There is a real problem in society, but it’s not gay people.

      I don’t love evil, so I don’t judge people as evil. I see people as people, trying to do the right thing in a world so hard, so confusing, so painful, that NO HUMAN can know what is TRULY right.

      I just rely on my instincts, because I haven’t got much else.

  • JonathanMiles

    So well said brother Matt. Proud of you!

  • Rollan McCleary

    Gay/Queer activists can prove disturbingly dogmatic, intolerant and dismissive, but so
    too can gay Christians. As the first person to obtain a doctorate from any
    religious studies dept anywhere in the assessment of gay spiritualities I can,
    alas, witness to the negative attitudes of both parties. Leading gay Christians
    I could name can’t be bothered to cite me as any pioneering authority or just reply
    to me. So you may well merely confirm a pattern if you hit delete on the
    following which nonetheless deserves to be said and pondered.

    Just suppose for a moment that nearly everything you and correspondents here are saying is off-centre, wrong. Imagine that a gay eros, or at least some of it, was right and intended
    as part of creation itself, even necessarily so because, as especially some
    Jewish Christians like Canon Paul Oppenheimer and Bishop Hugh Montefiore have
    with reverence maintained, even Jesus himself was likely gay – gay being a psychology
    before simply sex. Would Jesus even have been a truly representative
    incarnation of humanity which is made up of man and woman if he hadn’t been
    something like a female soul in a male body which is what the first German gay
    theorists maintained the gay male was – an idea influenced as it happens by
    certain mystical Jewish ideas?

    At this time of year I can well recommend reading the new edition of my “Testament of the Magi” which if it doesn’t solve the Bethlehem Star mystery, let anyone tell me what does and ever will? goo.gl/I28aCm Its inquiry has to be the end of era solution to the mystery the beginning of the era introduced. But in especially its Part Two you will encounter things and indeed biblical ideas which can shed light on sexuality and spirituality issues in a way never quite seen or treated
    before. For those who wouldn’t care to spend time on a book (even with a cheap
    kindle version of it available), some unusual insights are presented (including
    with a perhaps unexpected critique from me of the mind changes of Alan Chambers) in the two
    part feature article at goo.gl/bD2gHy. There is a key to unlocking the mystery of things gay, but who wants to find or use it?

  • P0xi

    Are you really so sure that this is part of God’s plan?
    I do understand that it’s in the Bible, but it’s also very politically convenient.

    I’ll say it straight, without any twists: The Bible could have been modified by evil people in order to get you to judge people for something that has nothing to do with you.

    Whether or not gay people are evil or not has NOTHING to do with your life. It is THEIR life, and by trying to judge them by writing a post like this, and then confirming nothing more than the most baseline, mainstream opinion, I really am not so sure your brain is turned on.

    It seems like you just accept what’s written in the Bible without thinking about it.
    I will not tolerate foolishness. Forgiveness is the ONLY option when it comes to non-harmful crime.
    To even DARE consider hurting a person, or trying to control their life, for a non-violent, non-harmful “crime” is very much out of line, and simply writing this sort of article is something that I would never approve of, especially in the current political climate.

    Do you want a holocaust to happen or something? Do you want mass death because self-righteous religious people are going around saying that gay people really ARE evil? The next step to recognizing evil is ending it.

    If it is truly evil to be gay, then they must be killed.

    But I would not be so sure that they are evil.

    Four things in life stand out to me as evil: Murder, theft, rape, and cheating or manipulating people.

    Having sex with people who give consent does not stand out as evil. The instincts that God gave me do NOT inform that that gay people are evil or wrong. It informs me that people who hurt others are wrong. It informs me that people who try to control others are wrong.

    And it informs me that YOU, a person who is inciting hatred towards creations of god, is wrong.

    You are wrong, and you are the evil one here. Please turn your heart towards a path of righteousness and non-judgement. As humans on this Earth, we must recognize how difficult life is, and how confusing it can be. The Bible is likely modified to manipulate people into fulfilling political goals, such as massacres against the innocent, or robbing people using tithes.

    Use your brain for the love of God, and recognize the dangerous things you are saying.
    You are spreading reasons for hatred in this world, and you will be damned.

    I’d rather be friends with a hundred gay people, than a single person who spits at another person just for being gay.

  • A profound dive into self-denial and dangerous preaching. Always a good combo from someone who can’t accept who he actually is and in turn falls victim to misinterpretation of the Bible.

  • Ernie

    Great post Matt. I think you nailed it! Thanks for sharing.

  • Bethany Georgia

    Very honored by your vulnerability and encouraged by your commitment to Christ! I will continue to pray for strength, grace and an overwhelming sense of God’s love and Holy Spirit power for all my brothers and sisters in this situation. Thank you for being brave enough to share your story!

  • WaveDave

    Thank you so much for this post. I grew up in a conservative church that was part of a conservative, very Biblical denomination. The pastor, who recently retired, preached about sin almost every sermon, and homosexuality was mentioned many times. One day he got up to preach and in his sermon he said that there may be people in this church who are same-sex attracted. He went on to say that being SSA/SSO was not a sin in and of itself…in fact those who are and yet seek to live for Christ and follow Him are the real heroes of the faith.

    I almost cried…being SSA myself. In my experience, the church has many times failed those who are…offering only pious platitudes, quick fixes and microwave surgery. It is never easy…rejection, “turn or burn”, stereotypes etc. are hurdles not easily overcome. The church should be a place of help and hope and willingness to walk with someone who is without condemnation. Some may change completely and others will face a life-long struggle. I have known times of fierce temptation, but the fact of momentary pleasure cannot compare to hearing the Master say, “Well done…” Life goes by so quickly and I have found serving Christ by serving others to be a joy.

    I have a feeling that across this world sit many people each week in a church pew who are SSA and would give anything to have someone just to listen and not reject them out-of-hand.

    • For me it is a lifelong struggle. For most who are SSA it is this way, if a person is honest with themselves. There is no cure, because if there was there would be a cure for sin. Our cure awaits the coming of our Lord. We have to await him.

  • Jason Brand

    If there is a God, I seriously hope he has bigger fish to fry than two people of the same sex being together. If not, it’s not a God that I want to be associated with. What two people want to do in their bedroom has nothing to do with who they are. Gay people can be kind, generous, and the list goes on. And those are the things that count. Depriving yourself of love that doesn’t hurt anyone just can’t be the answer.