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Do you believe that gays should be members of the church body?

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  • Do you believe that gays should be members of the church body?

    I know this is a very touchy topic and a lot might disagree to agree but what is really right and wrong? Should we start accepting gays as members of the church family? If yes, has the Bible that we have been using for decades changed?

  • #2
    The church often excommunicated people who openly disobeyed the laws of God. Corinthians 5
    It is actually reported that there is sexual immorality among you, and of a kind that is intolerable even among pagans: A man has his father’s wife. And you are proud! Shouldn’t you rather have been stricken with grief and removed from your fellowship the man who did this?
    Homosexuality in the bible is classed as a sin in the bible.
    "You shall not lie with a male as one lies with a female; it is an abomination."
    And in the New Testament too
    Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals,nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, shall inherit the kingdom of God."
    If homosexuals know this but won't change, why should they be in church in the first place?
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    • #3
      I'm not anti-gay, so I don't really care about their sexual orientation.



      Last edited by Christforums; 07-13-2016, 07:20 PM.
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      • #4
        Originally posted by Davienna View Post
        I know this is a very touchy topic and a lot might disagree to agree but what is really right and wrong? Should we start accepting gays as members of the church family? If yes, has the Bible that we have been using for decades changed?
        As far as I am aware, homosexuals were always welcome into the church. Though in church membership, they'd have to submit to church discipline, and repent and refrain from living a homosexual lifestyle. I wouldn't call them a homosexual or gay unless they are identifying as that, and if they are, then I question whether they truly identify as Christian. If I stole something I am a thief, but if I repent from the sin and do not steal ten years down the road I am not going to self identify as a thief.



        God bless,
        William
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        • #5
          Originally posted by William View Post

          As far as I am aware, homosexuals were always welcome into the church. Though in church membership, they'd have to submit to church discipline, and repent and refrain from living a homosexual lifestyle. I wouldn't call them a homosexual or gay unless they are identifying as that, and if they are, then I question whether they truly identify as Christian. If I stole something I am a thief, but if I repent from the sin and do not steal ten years down the road I am not going to self identify as a thief.



          God bless,
          William
          My sentiments exactly. I would welcome them into the church with open arms with hopes of enlightenment. But fellowships has to have guidelines as they need to refrain from the said activities that would suggest that they are still gay.
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          • #6
            It is interesting to say, but it really depends on the denomination of the church they attend as to whether or not they would be considered a member in good standing. I can tell you that in any truly conservative, bible believing church they would not be allowed membership until they have repented as William outlined in his comment. If they are a member and it is found out they are homosexual then they would no longer be considered in good standing and it would be the duty of the church leadership (elder board/session) to begin proper disciplinary actions.
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            • #7
              I think they should. Their sexual orientation shouldn't be a problem to the religion. I know there's religious cases where gays will be "excluded", but in my opinion that's just wrong. They have every right to practice their religion.
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              • #8
                Originally posted by cecejailer
                Yes, of course. I mean, they should be aware that not every church will be open minded enough to take them in, but I feel like religion has evolved enough to accept that there are people who like the same sex. Doesn't matter if it's natural or forbidden, it happens and unless it's harming anyone, it's not a problem. If a gay person wants to be a christian, I would give them 100% support. Nobody should be forbidden of praising God because of their sexual orientation. I hope people will realize this soon. Besides, I don't believe the new testament says anything about this. So if you belong to a church that's based on the new testament, it should be easier to accept the "not judge" rule.
                You may want to read through the book of Romans, as what you have said here flies in the face of much of what is taught in that book alone.
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                • #9
                  I disagree. Although Christianity is very progressive and modern to suit society's wider 21st values it very clearly states in the bible which is the word of god, that it is not acceptable.
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                  • #10
                    If we had to be totally sinless to belong to Christ's Church it would be empty.
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                    • #11
                      Well, let's put it this way... if gay people aren't allowed inside our churches, where exactly WILL they go in order to hear the Word of God and perhaps become His own? We are called upon to deliver that Word to the masses, and gays and lesbians are included in that description. We need to be all-inclusive in some things just to enable people to be able to learn about and grow in Christ. There have been people who have converted from the gay lifestyle because of Jesus, so we have to remember those few in order to help others as well. I'm not talking about gay pastors or lesbian Sunday school teachers here. I'm talking about people feeling welcome to come in off the street from ANY walk of life and be greeted as though they were our dearest friends. Should gay people be allowed church membership? Perhaps not... but they definitely should be allowed in and welcomed with open arms.
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                      • #12
                        Wow, this thread sure veered off violently in one direction.

                        No one is saying that people who are homosexual should not attend church. What is being said is that if they want to become a member they should understand that the homosexual lifestyle is not acceptable, as will any other sin issue that anyone might not repent of, while being a member in good standing.

                        Of course we should welcome anyone who feels called to attend church and worship God.
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                        • #13
                          I guess the sticky-wicket about having people attend church that are openly homosexual that the rest of the congregation not treat them as second class citizens, or somehow unworthy of God's love and forgiveness. That is probably the stigma many people view the church with. And as humans we do tend to continue to look at someone differently depending on the kind of sin(s) they may have committed even after they may have repented and are working to turn their lives around. This is most likely the biggest reason homosexuals do not attend the churches the belong to the more conservative denominations, as they do not want to feel judged just walking in the door.
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                          • #14
                            How long does an Alcoholic have to be sober before he can apply for Church Membership?
                            At that point, should he stop speaking of himself as "struggling with Alcoholism, but sober for X years"? Is he no longer an "alcoholic"?
                            If he 'falls off the wagon' and has three days of binge drinking after his wife abandons him and takes their son to another state, should he be stricken from the membership roll?

                            Are we going to apply this same standard to gossip? (which I believe falls in some of those same lists?)

                            ###

                            To answer the OP for the church I attend. Anyone who shows up and claims to be 'born again' is considered a member. Anyone who does not consider themselves a member is a visitor.
                            Anyone who attends for more than a few times and is in open sin, will have their sin confronted. We host four or five weddings a year for people who arrive 'living together' and decide they want to be part of the church. We can throw a dinner and a party together on less than a week notice. :)

                            We have members who have struggled for years with substance abuse. They are always welcome. What they did/do was/is never OK. We all love them and are praying for them.
                            Some people eventually choose God, some people ultimately do not. We rejoice for the first and weep for the second.

                            We have a lesbian couple who attend. They are aware that we and God love them and we and God do not approve of their life style. The only hard line of intolerance that we as a church have drawn, is that we will close the doors of the church before we will perform or recognize any same sex marriage - no law will ever change that. They choose to fellowship with us.
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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by atpollard View Post
                              How long does an Alcoholic have to be sober before he can apply for Church Membership?
                              At that point, should he stop speaking of himself as "struggling with Alcoholism, but sober for X years"? Is he no longer an "alcoholic"?
                              If he 'falls off the wagon' and has three days of binge drinking after his wife abandons him and takes their son to another state, should he be stricken from the membership roll?

                              Are we going to apply this same standard to gossip? (which I believe falls in some of those same lists?)
                              Yes, we are going to apply those same standards to other sins. These are good questions and may even well be good observations about other members to be brought up to the governing body.... each denomination has its own way of dealing with it.

                              Originally posted by atpollard View Post
                              We have members who have struggled for years with substance abuse. They are always welcome. What they did/do was/is never OK.
                              There are some occasions when it is not appropriate for people to attend the church. Question, would you invite them in if they were high on crack or pcp? Does your church take into account the affects of sin towards the actual body of Christ? And the temptation that it may subject others dealing with issues as such within the church body?

                              Originally posted by atpollard View Post
                              We have a lesbian couple who attend. They are aware that we and God love them and we and God do not approve of their life style. The only hard line of intolerance that we as a church have drawn, is that we will close the doors of the church before we will perform or recognize any same sex marriage - no law will ever change that. They choose to fellowship with us.
                              So what happens if someone claims to be Christian and lives a sinful lifestyle yet wants your church to marry them? You mentioned your church will not marry those living with one another. How long must they be separated before your church marries them to turn your own question on you? Who or what body determines whether the party is sincere in repentance?

                              You haven't mentioned anything about church discipline towards its members and what they are actually held accountable for. Are members at your church only held accountable for tithes and offerings? Or are they held accountable in both life and doctrine? You partly answered whether one is held accountable in life, but now what about doctrine?

                              How would your church treat a Calvinist, for example, if they opposed your church's statement of faith or doctrine, and within the church body a Calvinist promoted the doctrine of Calvinism and began teaching others about it in bible study? Will your church show the same tolerance towards the unpopular issue of Calvinism as the popular issue of today involving the lesbian couple? Are the Calvinist free to attend and preach the gospel through the TULIP method or will they be silenced and told that the church disagrees with those particular doctrines? How far can the Calvinist go, can they push your congregation all the way to Reformed theology?

                              The whole purpose of church discipline is repentance. It isn't a witch hunt. I'm just curious how your church brings serious issues with members to light, and what discipline from Scripture are actually applied towards membership.

                              God bless,
                              William
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