Today, I want to question: why this sin? Certainly, sexual sins are a hot topic. And there are many debates about them. Are they worse than other sins? When we talk about sexual sin, many also envision a breakdown in society. I’m not going to debate any of this here. What I am going to ask is: why are we picking this one?
Biblically, we do know that sexual sin is addressed in multiple places in the Bible-- both Old and New Testament. But when we talk about why civilizations crumble and what hurts the heart of God-- we also see other sins brought up. The widows and orphans not being cared for. The poor being taken advantage of. Greed. Pride. If we are to focus on sexual sin, then shouldn't we also be focusing at least as much on humanitarian causes?
We are not called to purify our culture. We are called to be salt and light. We are called to share God's grace. We are not called to eradicate sin. We are called to share the good news that there is forgiveness of sin through Jesus. Trying to police our culture and make others live as we do is not fulfilling our mission-- it's judgmental. And it's futile. Living a life of love does not mean we accept or support others' sin. It means we care about people and seek to serve others and offer grace as Jesus did.
Too often, sexual sin falls especially into the category of moral judgments vs. unconditional love. And quite often, sexual sin becomes tied to our worth. Those who are in violation are somehow less-then. And for all of us on both sides: There is stigma. There is fear and heated debates and legislation and pointed fingers and court cases and lives- real lives- that are affected by how we act in regard to sexual sin. Jesus came to save, not condemn. If we are to live as Jesus did, we need to have this same mindset.
As I write this, it is Valentine's Day. For me, it is a day of love. Not just romantic love, but all kinds of love. I hope today that we choose to love. I hope that those who have been marginalized for any reason, particularly in regard to some of the church's response to sexual sin, will feel loved. Whether it was a mistake or an act of willful rebellion, whether it was one time or for years... The Jesus I know has grace for all who seek forgiveness, for all who seek after Him. No one will be denied. Even for this sin.