Is It Because Christians Are Now More "Progressive" That We Don't Put Law Breakers to Death?

Visitor: You are pretending Christians are progressive and infallible in 2015. Keep up with Uganda? How about Russia? The treatment of LGBT doesn't really count, because they're  wrong right? You know you can get away with killing somebody for being gay in Uganda because it's justified by the Bible? Don't be hypocritical and don't rationalize.

Response: Regarding your comment about putting homosexuals to death being justified by the Bible ... you seem so focused on your own cause that you seem wholly unaware that there are a VAST array of sins which were punishable by death in Old Testament Law.  The list of capital crimes is so comprehensive that justice required in the Old Testament would likely sweep up everyone on earth. When I read those laws I know that I personally deserve to be among those who are put to death. Here are just a sampling of acts punishable by death in the Old Testament: Cursing Parents (Leviticus 20:9); Working on the Sabbath (Exodus 31:15); Premarital Sex (Deuteronomy 22:20); Disobedience to Parents (Deuteronomy 21:18); Child Sacrifice (Deut 18:10); Witchcraft (Exodus 22: 18); Blasphemy (Leviticus 24:16); Apostasy and Enticement to others to worship false gods (Deuteronomy 12:6); Homosexual acts (Leviticus 20:13); Adultery (Leviticus 20: 10-12) ...the list goes on and on (and includes even some seemingly lesser offenses).

So is it because we are now more "progressive", as you say, that we don't put people to death?  No.  Jesus came to bear sin for Jews and Gentiles.  Death remains the just penalty for all sin. (Romans 6:23) But, thanks be to God, Jesus' sacrifice on our behalf delays justice, not only for LGBT people but for us all. It is now an age of mercy wherein we are to proclaim to the world the good news that their sin can be forgiven in Jesus Christ. There is no sin too deep that grace is not deeper still ... and this includes your sin if you trust in Christ. But to those who worship the false idols of their hearts (any God-replacement) take heed ... Jesus will soon be invading with His armies and will overthrow his enemies and all injustice with the breath of His mouth. Those who continue in their sin He will tread them the winepress of the fury of the wrath of God the Almighty (Revelation 19:15).  But He is now offering pardon in advance of His invasion to all those who receive Him (John 1:12, 13). He summons people from every tribe, ethnic background, religion and nation.  Those who are joined to Him now before He invades will be considered His ally and He will raise them up to be co-heirs with Christ as sons. The alternative is to be under the wrath of the king. We herald this announcement: that the True King is on the throne and he'll be invading and because of his substitutionary death on the cross grants forgiveness to all who trust in Him.   Justice delayed is not justice denied ... it is because of God's mercy that He Himself bore our sin on that tree and the delay means He is merciful and giving human beings ample time to repent.

I would encourage you to stop thinking of LGBT peoples to be singled out as the victim and you would understand that Christians are not forgiven because they are better or more moral than you. But are just like you... sinners in need of atonement and grace.

The most theologically conservative Christians are not interested in violence against LGBT people. We are here to point out how people of all backgrounds can be rescued. The media, following the rhetoric in your camp, use the terms "homophobia" and "hate" way too liberally, applying it to anyone who simply disagrees with you.  The accusations of homophobia are so frequent that it just sounds like crying wolf now.  There really are people out there who are homophobic and really do hate LGBT folks.  Learn to differentiate between those who have a desire to physically harm you or call you names with those who simply believe homosexuality is morally wrong and need redemption, just like us. The difference is profound.  We are all in the same boat and need mercy just like you.  We are merely trying to help rescue as many people out of the bondage of this world, by the grace of God, as we can.. We were all born into bondage to various sins... sins from which we cannot escape apart from the grace of God. It is not because we are "progressive" that we do not put LGBT people to death but, on the contrary, because we are theological conservatives... and we understand that, because of Christ, this is an age of mercy in which we all have an opportunity to hear and respond to Christ's call... and we certainly are not saved because we are more. righteous than you.  

As for people like those in Uganda, indeed, but LGBT people do count ... it is not because these folks are taking their Bible seriously but they are not taking their Bible seriously enough and they have forgotten the core message of the gospel ... they have an over-realized eschatology, meaning they are taking into their own hands (before the proper time), what God has promised that He himself will do when he comes to judge the world. Furthermore, it is possible they are being self-righteous and have completely misapprehended the most basic message of the gospel: that they were saved by grace ... that THEY TOO justly deserve the wrath of God, save for the mercy of Jesus Christ alone. It is the theological "progressives" that I worry about the most - it is they who are most liable to fall into these kinds of sins. A simple example from history should suffice - In Nazi Germany it was only the confessional church that ended up standing against the regime -- that is, the church that was most theologically conservative.  It was the liberals who were more open that ended up yielding to Hitler.  That is not to say that theological conservatives won't ever fall into sin (and historically they have) because they are human and can still be deceived, but it is much less likely because they are serious understanding the Bible. So I beleive no one is rationalizing anything ... this is the most theologically conservative understanding of the Bible.

"Do not say in your hearts, 'it is because of my righteousness that the Lord has brought me in to possess this land', ... for you are a stubborn people ... But it was because the Lord loved you and kept the oath he swore to your ancestors that he brought you out with a mighty hand and redeemed you from the land of slavery; (Deut 9:4,7; 7:8)

This is a shorter version of a longer response.

Fri, 02/13/2015 - 09:28 -- john_hendryx

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