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veryone seems to "know" what Christianity is, but few can agree about how to live it. It's easy if you follow the original model, Jesus; it's easy to get off base if you take your focus off of Him. Much of what people think is Christianity is really religion. There is a difference. If you are not sure what the differences are, I suggest you read my article True Verses False Christianity, and then return to these pages to learn how to live a healthy and productive Christian Life.
nder Christ, all things are lawful to you, the Gay Christian, but you do not have a license to partake in them all, compelled by God to refrain from those things, activities, thoughts and motivations which are not in accordance with the Love of God planted in your heart. Under Christ, you are free from the bonds of rules, regulations, duties and responsibilities, but your liberty is found only through the medium of God's Love, and you cannot use your liberties to partake in that which is hurtful to yourself, others or God. II Cor. 3:17; Gal. 5:2-6, 13; Col. 2:6-8, 16-23.
Liberty in Christ does not give license for you to "do your own thing," and I do what I want to do. Love is a very interesting concept; in order for Love to exist, and to be Love, Love must have an object upon which to focus, and it must be rooted in the self and expressed outward. You can see this in the Godhead: one God, yet Three Persons, and the Scriptures say God is Love. For God to Love, God's Love must be rooted in Self and expressed outward. God Loves and we Love God because God first Loved us, Love initiates, does not wait to be Loved by others, Loves for Love's sake alone. As God Loves, so should you. Matt. 15:17-20; I Peter 2:16; James 1:21-27; 2:12; I John 4:7-13, 19.
Tempered by Love, your liberty in Christ means you serve one another, care for others, and yourself, and use not your liberties to cause others to stumble in life or the Faith, especially those who may not know Jesus, who are young in the Faith, who struggle in life, or are enduring difficult times. Rom. 14:13, 21; I John 2:10.
Liberty in Christ's Love means showing respect and care for yourself physically, emotionally, intellectually and spiritually. It means taking care of your body, which is the Temple of the Holy Spirit, eat right, exercise, get rest, take care of yourself when sick, seek others when you need help; laugh, cry, handle stress, challenge your mind; set aside time to read and study God's Word and pray to your Parent who doesn't just want to hear a list of needs from you but how your day has been.
Liberty in Christ's Love means showing respect and care for others physically, emotionally, intellectually and spiritually. You cannot tell people Jesus Loves them if you can't Love them, too. It means to be visible and available, letting the Spirit lead, not you, in sharing a word of encouragement, lending a hand, teaching or admonishing others, shepherding and guiding them, telling others the Good News of Jesus Christ. Love for God and others are connected. The measure of Love you show for the person you care for the least is the same measure of Love you have for God. Col. 3:12-17.
If God lives within you, frankly God has to go along wherever you go. God sees what you see, has to go along with what you do and where you go. If you are what you eat, then you are also what you read, what you see, and what you do. If you hear, see, think and do that which is not Love, and I were living with you, I would feel grief in my heart, too. I Cor. 6:19-20; Eph. 4:30.
Can a Gay Christian go to a Gay Bar? I ask you, can a Gay Christian watch television, go to movies, the theatre, and dance, etc.? There is nothing basically evil in these things, but the form of expression can be wrong and not for the best, not edify or profit you. You can watch television that honors God, other people and yourself, or you can watch programs which degrade others and yourself, or grieve the heart of God; the same is true with dancing, and other things in life, including Gay Bars.
A lot of what people teach is right or wrong behavior or lifestyle is merely culture: If you and I went into the jungle, witnessed to a village and they all accepted Jesus, adopted into the Family of God, began to grow in God, bearing the fruit of Love, shall we tell all of them they now have to put clothes on, because when we first met them they were all naked? No, for their concept of body shame is different from the culture in which we live. Actually, though, I think they would wear clothes, out of Love for us, their "weaker siblings in the Lord," removing their clothes after we depart from them.
But, there are things in all cultures that are not Love, not in the best interest of the people or the individual person. If the cultural expression is not Love, it is better not expressed.
In many cultures, "Bars" are not places of "smoking, drinking, and sex," they are places where people relate, share together, read, debate religion or the politics of the day, etc. You must take each bar and discern for yourself its purpose and function, and determine if your participation remains within the bounds of Love for you only, not the other people there. You are called to be in the world but not part of it, to be separate, not submit to its lack of Love.II Cor. 6:17.
For the gay man or lesbian woman, the Gay Bar has long been the place where you can meet people, connect with them and learn of other Gay groups and activities. Practice good judgment. If the Bar, the theatre, or whatever does not elevate you but rather cheapens, try to find other avenues where you can connect with people.
Ethics is not what people say regarding how you should or shouldn't live; it is what the Spirit says to you and your spirit bearing witness with God's Spirit in Love. The Fruit of the Spirit is Love: and from that Love comes joy, peace, self-control, patience, etc. These are a good measuring rule to use to determine is something is of God or which God would bless you. Does the activity edify you? Ethics is your responsibility. You have the freedom to choose, choose to put away all things that edify not, which cause use or abuse, and instead be Christ-like. Choose to be a Temple without locks, without shutters, freely open for the Light of Christ to shine through you to all peoples. Rom. 12:9-21; II Cor 10:3-5; Eph. 4:22-32; 5:18-21; Phil. 4:5-9; I Thess. 4:9, 11-12; II Thess. 3:5; Heb. 10:23-25.
I do not flaunt being Gay, I flaunt being Christian. It is Christian which I desire people to see in me first and the most; it is Christ whom I desire for people to see living in me, moving through me, reaching out to them in Love. What do people see first and most when they see you? I say this not to put you under self-condemnation, but for self-affirmation. You are a Christian who happens to be Gay, just as I also am a Christian who happens to be Scotch-Irish. You can be holy and godly in being Gay, just as you can be holy and godly in being Scotch-Irish. Who you are in your heart will determine what you do, think and say. If you try to be someone you are not, it shows; if you try too hard, it also shows, forced. Be yourself, your true self in Christ. Know who you are in Christ and you shall shine as a light in a dark place.
Remember, as a Gay Christian, you are not called to do but to be. There are two motivational forces: Love and Fear. Ask yourself: "Am I doing this out of Love (for myself, God, or people) or fear (that God, people or my inner self won't Love me if I don't)?" Love seeks no reward, Love ceases from labor, Love does because Love is and Love moves outward spontaneously without thought or effort; perfect Love casts out fear. John 4:18.
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