Another appeal to my people…the church:
I continue to grow in a new understanding and I realize that in my humanness and finite understanding, I can be on a wrong path, so I really am (as strong-willed as I may seem) am open to debating, discussing, etc. All I can go on is my gut. I in no way am trying to water down the standards of the Bible, but I feel God leading me in a new way of reaching out to others for the sake of the gospel.
If I’m wrong, PLEASE tell me so I can process that perspective (iron sharpens iron). That being said, I recently watched a video by John MacArthur. Because I totally love MacArthur and his ministry has been a major source of encouragement in my Christian walk, at first my conservative self “liked” it, but then this new evolving self reflected on it as I drove around today. I felt that although he is expressing what conservatives believe to be true in God’s Word, it lacked the compassion and understanding that is needed to really minister to those in the LGBT community.
Although in my own understanding and in my comprehension of the Bible, I may not be able to truly identify with the feelings of a transgender person, his thoughts on the matter, created no bridge. No arm of compassion reaching out. In fact, it communicated that basically a person becomes somehow inhuman or nonexistant. Is this true? Is this how Jesus saw any human being, regardless if they steered away from the letter of the law? Even though a person has changed or is going through the process of changing their God-given sex at the heart are they not still a HUMAN BEING…that Jesus loves and died for? Doesn’t His Word say, “Man looks at the outward appearance, but God looks at the heart?” So what they have changed their outward body structure! They are still human and worthy of LOVE and respect. As Christ looked past the fact that Zaccheus was a tax collector and asked to have dinner with him, are we not called to do the same? Are we not called to first love, build relationships and draw them to Christ by radiating his LOVE? Like WHERE in the Bible is this way of MacArthur communicating reflective of Christ’s way of ministering to others?
His video totally dehumanized the LGBT community in the eyes of the church and that right there makes a hard heart in ministering. It goes against when the Word says, “God is NO respector of persons” Acts. 10:34. That scripture does not have a disclaimer that says, “except the LGBT community. He RESPECTS everyone and we should too no matter what. We are to respect ALL human life, because Jesus died for ALL human life. MacArthur preaching this in the churches?! NO wonder we don’t cringe at the hate that the LGBT community deals with daily. In fact, if we search our hearts, we sort of feel a little satisfaction when they are condemned. Come on, be honest!! This way he communicated desensitizes us to them as simply being a human being that God loves and died for.
I really feel that Christians have gotten away from what Jesus taught and lived. We are so up on our high horses and our seminary selves that we no longer FEEL! I am coming to a place of getting back to the basics. We are first called to share the gospel with others. NO ONE has to accept it. NO ONE has to even hear it. Like, they have a CHOICE!
I think of fishing (which Jesus so often used as a metaphor for witnessing). We place the gospel out there and wait until a soul is attracted to it. No fisherman, dives into the water, grabs a fish, beats it over the head and stomps the life out of it, dragging it home to eat! Can you imagine a transgender person, especially a youth coming to him and hearing this diatribe as a way to “deal” with his struggle? How hopeless! Anyway, back to fishing. It is not until the fish nibbles, than eats that they are drawn in. Can we “fish” like that please? Sharing the gospel with grace and compassion and if a person actually wants to partake in this faith, THEN and only then we disciple. Only then do we invite them to give up their lives for God (as a fish gives up his life in the frying pan, for the fisherman!). But we do not disciple by forcing them to obey the letter of the law first!
OH, I think of when Paul had to rebuke Peter for trying to distance himself from those who were not circumcised!!! God says he is looking for people with the law written on their hearts! And the Word says, “Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God!” Can we share the gospel, please, and just do that!? Then love unconditionally and just do that?! And then, as a person is drawn in by the leading of the Spirit (or the fishing rod), disciple them in the Word, allowing the Spirit to Work in them “the will and the do of His good pleasure?”
As a person finds themselves faithfully in the Word, because it is more powerful than any two-edged sword, the Spirit will draw them closer to Himself and make them what he wants. HE GIVES THE INCREASE! We are just called to LOVE. SHARE. UNOPPRESSIVELY DISCIPLE. and finally LOVE. True discipleship is a process that takes so much time, some longer than others, but God is ever patient while His Spirit slowly removes those things from our lives that do not reflect him. Each person’s journey is different and on a different schedule created by the Father who loved everyone while we were yet sinners. All that to say, MacArthur’s little talk, really troubled me and I found myself questioning this man who I respect deeply.
In the video, a young lady asks how to deal with transgender people Biblically. He started his answer by explaining how they are just basically some mutated human. It broke my heart, especially since the girl was saying it was her older sibling! Now she will look at him or her as less than human!! My heart aches….Lord my heart aches. With regards to “dealing” with ANY human being, we love. We fish, but patiently waiting for opportunities to share, waiting for even the person to reach out, as Nicodemus would sneak out to ask Christ questions, because he was a Pharisee and feared losing his status. Jesus did not rush him to leave that sect, but he simply answered his questions. He loved him. In this video, MacArthur talks about how transgenders have a high percentage rate of committing suicide…GOD FORBID! Can we not even speak that? I personally may not understand the way Christ could understand them, so I leave it to Him. It is honestly hard for my mind to conceive, so I leave it to the ONE who created their inner most being. I love, patiently share as the Spirit gives opportunities, and then I pray for the Spirit to work in them as he wills. The video was depressing, hopeless, and lacked the main attribute of God…LOVE.
(I have included the video below for your reference):