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True Christian Love


By Carman Bradley

The Divide Over Expressing “Christian Love”

Biblical guidance on Human Sexuality and Marriage, according to traditionalists in Canadian Christendom, declares the homosexual lifestyle to be a transgression of God`s will.   Moreover, traditionalists believe the saving and sanctifying grace of Jesus Christ is powerful enough to deliver men and women from same-sex attraction and the transgression of living the homosexual lifestyle.   An example of this theology in action is found in “Real Life Stories the Exodus Impact.”  Here, Mike Ensley gives his deliverance witness under the title, “True Love Changes You: How Jesus Christ Loved Me Out of Homosexuality:

One day, when I was in one of the places I went to 'hook up,' feeling disgusted with myself but hopelessly needy, I was suddenly overcome by the presence of the Lord.  I heard this voice in my heart telling me Jesus had followed me there, even to that nasty sinful place, and wanted me to come back with Him.  This revelation about His true feelings toward me began a slow but inevitable change in my mind.  I knew I was meant for better, and for the first time dared to believe my life could change…[Now] everyone wants to know: "Do I like girls!?" The answer is: "I'll get there when I'm supposed to!"  Many aren't impressed to hear this.  You aren't supposed to be impressed with me, but with God's love, grace and power.  Heterosexuality isn't the goal, holiness is.  And I am getting there!...As I walk daily in deeper intimacy with Him, and in genuine intimacy with other guys, I experience continuing victory over this struggle. Soon I will celebrate four years of freedom.[i]

Opposing this traditional view of God’s will and Christ’s loving deliverance power is a liberal element of professed Christians who declare love between members of the same sex (resulting from like gender attraction and sexual intimacy) to be God ordained.  And in Canada, the United Church is the chief advocate of this theology.  Before the Supreme Court, in 2004, the denomination gave their revolutionary testimony redefining the boundaries of Christian love.  The following are key extracts from their witness:[ii]

The societal significance of marriage cannot be overemphasized.  Marriage is a benchmark by which Canadian society names the everyday development of love and intimacy between a couple.  For many people, marriage ritualizes the sanctity of love through the very means by which people convert houses into homes, food into customs of community, and sex into love.

Theologically and liturgically, the United Church understands both opposite-sex and same-sex couples as sharing the same human dignity of being made in the image of God.  There is therefore no theological impediment that would prevent same-sex couples from participating in this union, which is one of the fullest expressions of the covenant between God and humanity.  To the contrary, excluding same-sex couples from this expression of the covenant relationship undermines their human basic dignity.

The exclusion of same-sex couples from civil marriage is based upon and perpetuates stereotypical assumptions about same-sex couples: that their relationships are less permanent, that they are incapable of commitment, and that they cannot form healthy families.  However, same-sex couples do have relationships of permanence, they do make commitments to each other and they do form healthy families.

The United Church does not agree with the AGC [Attorney General of Canada] that the purpose of marriage is procreation; procreation is one aspect and purpose of marriage but not the defining or only purpose.  The other, equally important purposes of marriage include fostering intimacy, companionship and respect, creating and sustaining community, and, in the case of religious marriage, expressing commitment to and communion with God.  No rational connection exists between the exclusion of same-sex couples and any of these purposes, including procreation.  Same-sex couples can and do have and raise children. 

Now the United Church of Canada and other religious liberals are allowed to hold whatever beliefs they wish - guaranteed by the Canadian Constitution; however, the problem arises with the assertion that their theology is authentic Christian theology.  The remainder of this essay is devoted to establishing the boundaries and characteristics of genuine Christian love and to exposing the source and evolution of the counterfeit “knock-off.”  In this era in Canada of state-sponsored homosexism the witness of biblical love takes on increased significance, even though love has always been the greatest of the three gifts - faith, hope and charity (love).  The Apostle Paul described the importance of love as follows:

Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal. And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing.  And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing (1 Corinthians 13:1-3).


God’s Loving Gift to Humankind

Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God (1 John 3:1).

When believers offer Christian love to fellow human beings, their gifts of charity and loving affirmation are drawn from a storehouse of love initially filled and graciously stocked by God:

He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love. In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him. Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another. No man hath seen God at any time. If we love one another, God dwelleth in us, and his love is perfected in us (1 John 4:8-12).

For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly.   For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die.  But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.   Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him.   For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.   And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement (Romans 5:6-11).

As the cliché goes “You’re Nobody Until Somebody Loves You.”[iii] The saved, the redeemed, the forgiven, the reborn in Christ, know they are somebodies - children of God, and above all, they know they are truly loved.   What is more, they know they are loved to an extent which will last unbroken for eternity and in a way that gives them victory over the trials and tribulations of earthly existence.  They know they have an eternal destiny with God in heaven.  Believers are justifiably some of the happiest people on the planet!

This divine gift of love is offered to all with one catch, you must accept the gift to receive it.  Duh!  This is a love-plan so simple that children find it easy to grasp.  The nature of God’s love for us is personified in the gift of His Son Jesus Christ.   And this gift is ultra special for many reasons.   We cannot demand it nor educate ourselves to achieve it.  We cannot buy it nor steal it.  We cannot make it ourselves.  Jesus Christ said of His love for us:

Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.   Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you.   Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you.   Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you (John 15:13-16.)

Although God wishes all to become children of God (2 Peter 3:9), this gift is not a universal blessing – not everyone will accept the gift; and for those that do, not everyone will receive the same Gifts of the Spirit as a result.  What is universal, for all who are born again through the acceptance of Jesus Christ as their Lord and Saviour, is the infilling of the Holy Spirit as a personal (and corporate or collective) Counsellor.  To have the Holy Spirit is to know and belong to Christ; and to belong to Christ is to know and belong to God the Father.  The Apostle John differentiated the anointing of God’s children from the works of the counterfeit deceivers of his day (Gnostics) when he said:

But ye have an unction from the Holy One, and ye know all things (1 John 2:20).  [NIV replaces “all things” with “the truth.”]

He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil (1 John 3:8).

Gnosticism aside, those of the world (non-believers), knoweth not the joy and the sense of peace found in Christ, because they knoweth Him not (1 John 3:1).

Attributes of Christian Love

The attributes of Christian love are patience and kindness, not jealousy or boastfulness, not arrogance or rudeness.  Love is not irritable or resentful; it does not insist on its own way.  Love doesn’t rejoice at wrong, but rejoices in right.  It bears, believes, hopes and endures all things.[iv]  Love is fellowship between persons and companionship with God.  Love is much more than emotion; it is an act of surrender, an act of will.   

Christians express their love back to Christ by acknowledging who He is, what He has done, who they are, what they have done and by guarding their ever thankful hearts for His use.  Christians humbly and thankfully acknowledge their dependence upon Christ and their willingness to submit to His authority.  Christians lovingly embrace the Fruits of the Spirit and accept whatever Gifts of the Spirit and life-calling Christ places on their hearts.  Christian love is fundamentally demonstrated in actions, not feelings, and is always offered to Christ’s glorification, not the believer’s exaltation.  Christians glorify Christ by expressing love to Him and by taking care of each other and reflecting Christ’s love through them to the lost. 

Expressing Love to Christ

There are many scripture verses that reveal how to give love back to God.  Here are a few:

Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind (Luke 10:27).

My little children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue; but in deed and in truth.  And hereby we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before him.  For if our heart condemn us, God is greater than our heart, and knoweth all things.  Beloved, if our heart condemn us not, then have we confidence toward God.  And whatsoever we ask, we receive of him, because we keep his commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in his sight.  And this is his commandment, That we should believe on the name of his Son Jesus Christ, and love one another, as he gave us commandment.  And he that keepeth his commandments dwelleth in him, and he in him. And hereby we know that he abideth in us, by the Spirit which he hath given us (1 John 3:18-24). 

Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God: and every one that loveth him that begat loveth him also that is begotten of him. By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God, and keep his commandments. For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.  For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith (1 John 5:1-4).

We foremost express love to Jesus Christ by the acceptance in our heart, mind and soul of Him as personal Lord and Saviour, the divine Son of God and the atoning Lamb of God.  This condition of acceptance is imperative for true Christian love.  We also show love to Christ by keeping His commandments and by submitting our will to His authority.  

Expressing Love to Fellow Human Beings

Jesus Christ expects the redeemed to become human portals for Christ-like love to both non-believers and brothers and sisters in Christ.  The parable of the Good Samaritan made it clear that all people are our neighbours, all are deserving of our mercy and love (Luke 10:25 – 37).  Christ also said:   

This is my commandment, that ye love one another, as I have loved you (John 15:12).    

Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy.  But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; that ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust. For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same?  And if ye salute your brethren only, what do ye more than others? do not even the publicans so?  Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect (Matthew 5:43 – 48).

But whoso hath this world’s good, and seeth his brother have need, and shutteth up his bowels of compassion from him, how dwelleth the love of God in him? (1 John 3:17)

Christians are to love one another, love our neighbours, love our enemies, love all humankind, as Christ loves us.  

The Deception Behind Liberal “Love” Theology

Obviously Jesus Christ cannot be both delivering the Mike Ensleys of the world (see opening paragraph to this essay) from a love for the homosexual lifestyle and, at the same time, be sanctifying love predicated on oral and anal sex between same-sex partners, whether married or not.  The Roman Catholic theologian, James. P. Hanigan, summarized the liberal-orthodox controversy over what constitutes legitimate (sanctioned) expressions of Christian love in his book, Homosexuality: The Test Case for Christian Sexual Ethics.  He wrote:

And if there are other choices open to homosexuals, why should not these options be available to heterosexuals as well? Thus, homosexuality may well serve as the ‘testcase’ of Christian sexual ethics since it poses the clearest challenge to the universal and evangelical character of that ethic.[v]

The liberal and the orthodox cannot both be right.  One draws his theology from the truth and the other is rooted in deception.  Responding to Pharisees who rejected the validity of His testimony, Jesus said of His followers:

If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free (John 8:31-32).

Of the Pharisees and unbelievers He said: 

Why do ye not understand my speech? even because ye cannot hear my word.   Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do.  He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.  And because I tell you the truth, ye believe me not (John 8:43-45).

Jesus Christ also declared:

I am the light of the world.  Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life (John 8:12).

The Apostle John elaborated this Gospel message when he wrote:

This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth: But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin (1 John 1:5-7).

I write unto you, young men, because ye have overcome the wicked one. I write unto you, little children, because ye have known the Father.  I have written unto you, fathers, because ye have known him that is from the beginning. I have written unto you, young men, because ye are strong, and the word of God abideth in you, and ye have overcome the wicked one.  Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.  For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.  And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever (1 John 2:13 – 17).

Satan is mentioned some ninety times in scripture under various names and the Bible reveals a diverse set of evil characteristics .  Satan is the agent of deceit and treachery, spiritually blinding all but the saved in Christ.  And biblical reference to darkness can mean ignorance of the truth (Job 37:19), calamity (Psalm 107:10), death (Psalm 88:12), wickedness (Proverbs 2:13, John 3:19) and damnation (Matthew 22:13).  In his book Win the Battle for Your Mind, Richard Strauss gives an inspired articulation of the struggle between darkness and light.  He writes:

At least one person is pleased about man’s darkened mind and does everything he can to keep it shaded from spiritual truth.  As the Apostle Paul put it, ‘The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so they cannot see the light of the Gospel of the glory of Christ, who is in the image of god’ (2 Cor. 4:4, NIV).  The god of this age is Satan, and he is battling to maintain control of men’s minds.  He will use every weapon in his diversified arsenal to secure these minds for his cause. 

Man’s will can only choose what his mind has first grasped.  His freedom of choice is restricted to the information he has in his mind.  So if Satan can keep man’s mind shielded from the truth of the Gospel, he effectively keeps man from getting to know God and from fulfilling God’s purpose for creating him.  Satan keeps man in spiritual darkness.[vi]

Our children are being bombarded with erroneous messages not only from the media, but also from their textbooks, their teachers, their friends, and sometimes their friend’s parents; and they are in danger of being deluded in matters such as sex, drugs, abortion, marital roles, and divorce.  Suddenly, we hear our children saying things like, ‘Sex before marriage is all right if we are having a meaningful relationship,’ or ‘Homosexuality is fine if that’s the way the person wants to live,’ or ‘There’s really nothing wrong with marijuana.’  It can happen to any of us.  The sheer weight and persistence of the opposition overwhelms us and wears us down.[vii] 

The dark deception behind liberal “love” theology includes the denial of three vital pillars of Christian belief: (1) liberal “love” theology denies the divinity of Jesus Christ; (2) liberal “love” theology denies the authority of the Bible; and (3) liberal “love” theology purports a doctrine of cheap grace and that all mankind will be saved through a multitude of religious routes to God. 

(1) - Liberal “Love” Theology Denies the Divinity of Jesus Christ

We need only to draw a few quotes from the chief bearers of liberal “love” theology to make this point.  The Right Rev. Dr. Bill Phipps, Moderator of The United Church of Canada, said in 1997:

No I don’t believe Christ was God.’[viii]  

Episcopalian bishop and homosexist, the Rev. Dr. John Shelby Spong writes:

This liturgical interpretation of Jesus’ death has resulted in a fetish in Christianity connected with the saving blood of Jesus….Believers sing of being ‘washed in the blood’ or ‘saved by the blood’ of Jesus….I have always found these images to be repulsive.[ix]

A savior who restores us to our pre-fallen status is therefore pre-Darwinian superstition and post-Darwinian nonsense….the Jesus portrayed in the creedal statement ‘as one who, for us and for our salvation, came down from heaven’ simply no longer communicates to our world. Those concepts must be uprooted and dismissed.[x]

We reimage God to keep the world from enduring the pain of a continuing reliance on a theistic deity….That same theistic God is quoted by people who want to impose their definitions of homosexuality or their values in the right-to-life movement on everyone else. So it matters how one thinks of God.[xi]

The result will be a humanity so deeply and powerfully drawn that the artificially imposed barrier between the human and the divine will fade and we can recognize that these two words – human and divine – do not point to separate entities; rather, they are like two poles on a continuum that appear to be separate and distinct, yet when one travels from one to other, the discovery is made that their shadows blend into and invade each other….I seek in Jesus a human being who nonetheless makes known, visible, and compelling the Ground of All Being.[xii]

Let me stretch the boundaries once more. To the extent that the Buddha, Moses, Elijah, Isaiah, Krishna, Mohammed, Confucius, Julian of Norwich, Catherine of Genoa, Hildegrad of Bingen, Rosa Parks, Florence Nightengale, Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Buber, Thich Nhat Hanhn, Dag Hammarskjöld, or any other holy person brings life, love, and being to another, then to that degree that person is to me the word of God incarnate. No fence can be placed around the Being of God. The suggestion that Jesus is of a different kind of substance and therefore different from every other human being in kind instead of in degree will ultimately have to be abandoned. Then the realization will surely begin to dawn that to perceive Jesus as different from others only in degree is to open all people to divine potential found in the Christ-figure. It is to invite all people to step into power of living fully, loving wastefully, and having the courage to be all that any one of us can be – a self-whole, free, real, and expanding, a participant in a humanity without boundaries.[xiii]

Christians, for example, assert that God is a Holy Trinity, as if human beings could figure out who or what God is. The Holy Trinity is not now and never has been a description of the being of God…Twenty-first century Christians must now come to understand that God does not inhabit creeds or theological doctrines shaped with human words.[xiv]

And in FAITH TALK II: A DRAFT STATEMENT OF FAITH FOR DISCUSSION AND RESPONSE,[xv] released in January 2005 by the Committee on Theology and Faith, The United Church of Canada also rejected the exclusive claims of the Gospel of Jesus Christ:

Our society is multicultural, our world is multifaith; our church community has varying theological perspectives within it.  Some make exclusive claims to absolute truth and find in these claims authorization to do harm…While believing that our faith is grounded in truth, our truth need not deny the truths of others.                                            

‘Our words, while necessary, are limited. We sometimes make false gods of them and use them to exclude or denigrate others. We therefore also speak of God: as Creator, Redeemer, and Sustainer; as God, Christ, and Spirit; as Mother, Friend, and Comforter; as Source of Life, Living Word, and Bond of Love.’

We know not when that hour (Christ’s return) will be, many in our day seek such knowledge and false prophets lead many astray, preaching a neo-apocalyptic gospel of smug triumphalism and the abandonment of earth.  We reject that false gospel, choosing instead to love our enemies and to care for the earth, choosing life…Divine creation does not cease until all things have found wholeness, union, and integration with the common ground of all being.

Like all Christian heresies, their existence creates more theological paradoxes than they ever appear to resolve.  When the United church speaks of Christ’s return, are they thinking this is notional or do they foresee all those with varying theological perspectives and other truths as being surprised by the Day of Judgment?   Actually, liberal “love” theology has addressed this question.  The doctrinal answer in FAITh TALK II - there will be no lost souls, no eternal destiny surprises, the liberal-loving God redeems all:

Divine creation does not cease until all things have found wholeness, union, and integration with the common ground of all being.

Before conscious thought or action on our part we are born into brokenness of this world.  Before conscious thought or action on our part we are surrounded by God’s redeeming love.

In Jesus’ resurrection, God overcomes death, reconciles and makes all creation new, faithful to what God in love has created.  Nothing separates us from the love of God.

The Risen Christ lives today, present to us and the source of our hope that nothing can hinder the Compassionate Love that is the origin and end of all.  

The Holy One promises that all will share in abundant life.  

(2) - Liberal “Love” Theology Denies the Authority of the Bible


Advocates of liberal “love” theology wish for a revised worldview in which a rewritten Gospel of Jesus Christ amputates the content of the Law along with its convicting intent, particularly as it applies to love and human sexuality.  To Evangelical and Catholic eyes the liberal theological goal is to alter the Gospel to ensure that Christ’s Light casts no sinful shadows.  Terms like obedience, sin, hell, judgment, guilt and condemnation are expunged under the new theological mantra of an all-inclusive unconditional loving God, an “anything goes” God.  A god that is so indifferent as to be meaningless.  A god and worldview not unlike that Aldous Huxley described over a half century ago: 

It is because the concept of a Creator-God interferes with our sexual mores. Thus, we have rationalized God out of existence. To us, He has become nothing more than the faint and disappearing smile of the cosmic Cheshire cat in Alice in Wonderland.[xvi]

For myself, as no doubt, for most of my contemporaries, the philosophy of meaninglessness was essentially an instrument of liberation. The liberation we desired was simultaneously liberation from a certain political and economic system and liberation from a certain system of morality. We objected to the morality because it interfered with our sexual freedom….The supporters of these systems claimed that in some way they embodied the meaning (a Christian meaning), they insisted of the world. There was one admirably simple method of confuting these people and at the same time justifying ourselves in our political and erotic revolt: we could deny that the world had any meaning whatsoever…[xvii]

More recently homosexist theologians declared the finishing touches necessary to end all concept of a Creator-God who interferes with our sexual mores.  Gay Columnist, Paul Varnell, writes:

The chief opposition to gay equality is religious. We may conduct much of our liberation efforts in the political sphere or even the ‘cultural’ sphere, but always undergirding those and slowing our progress is the moral/religious sphere. If we could hasten the pace of change there, our overall progress would accelerate – in fact, it would be assured.[xviii]

Thomas Sheehan, professor of religious studies at Stanford University, writes:

If we perform the radical surgery [on Christianity] that is required, not only will certain traditional formulations of faith fall by the wayside, but also much of the presumed content of Christianity, and rightly so. Our only consolation is that if we do not intervene radically and soon the patient will die.[xix]

Right Rev. Dr. Peter Short, Moderator of The United Church of Canada wrote in 2005:

Some will protest that we must have faith in the Bible, and that the Bible takes an unfavourable view of intimate same-sex relationship.  But I would answer that Christian faith is not an uncritical repetition of a received text.  It is a mindful commitment to the power of love, to which the text seeks to give witness. ..In fact, change is the only medium in which faithfulness can truly become faithfulness.  Uncritical repetition is more like being on autopilot.[xx]

The liberal “love” theology when fully understood can be seen as a deliberate assault on the purpose and authority of Scripture.  The corrupt theology aims to re-make Christ and His Gospel of love for self-serving purposes.  If Canadian Christendom does not quickly disassociate itself from the bearers of such heresy, the entire Body will continue to live with the adverse consequences – unanswered national-level prayers, no national revival. 

In contrast to liberal theology which amputates biblical revelation of right and wrong, the authentic Christian worldview leaves the authority of the Law intact and records that Jesus is the empowering source of the grace to overcome the unrighteousness, transgression, judgment and condemnation instructed by the Law.  Although Jesus alters the application of so-called “cultural” laws ending hypocritical legalism regarding food, drink, festivals and Sabbath activities, there is no evidence to substantiate a change in application of the traditional morality provisions, directed at keeping a righteous heart.  Jesus declares:  

Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them.  I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished (Matthew 5:17-18). 

Love is at the core of this LawAnd the Law is fundamentally an expression of the perfect character and will of God.  It would be impossible for the Law to cease to be the ideal of human morality.  Rightly understood the Law has always demanded a heart conformed to God.  The regenerate (or saved) are commanded to follow the Law and are, to a large extent, enabled to fulfill the Law, by gracious guidance from the Holy Spirit and by a motive of obedience anchored in the redeeming love of Jesus Christ.  The saved are empowered by love for Christ.  The Christian is under the obligation to claim Christ as his first love and then to love his neighbor as himself (Matthew 22:37-39).  The Law is meant to define the unrighteous dark shadows of life with the Light of Jesus Christ to show the way and the truth and the life (John 14:6).  The perfect obedience of Christ to the Law of God is not simply an example, but the basis of the redemption of His people, who otherwise lay condemned by the Law

But when the time had come, God sent His Son, born of a woman, born under law, to redeem those under law, that we might receive the full rights of sons.(Galatians 4:4-5) 

God’s grace received by the saved Christian does not mean the weak and careless forgiveness of sins, for our pardon was bought by the judgment, condemnation and execution of His One and Only Son.  It is the righteousness of the Law which illuminates and convicts us of sin.  This sin separates us from a Holy God and points us toward God’s only solution for forgiveness and restoration - Jesus Christ.  If we allow the Law to be arbitrarily erased, for self-serving purposes, we construct our own false reality.  We think we live in the Light but we are actually in its shadow, making Christ’s sacrifice in vain.  The Law and Jesus Christ are paired and matched revelations.  Much like male and female, the designed purpose of one cannot be fulfilled without the other.  Male and female are necessary to give us our first fleshly birth.  The Law (inanimate basis for conviction of sin) and Jesus Christ are needed to bring about the second spiritual birth (the infilling by the Holy Spirit).  To erase the Law is to reimage Jesus Christ.  And to wilfully reimage divine revelation to suit human political exigencies is hugely wrong, a terribly unloving act.  Regarding prohibitions against expressions of homosexual love, Romans 1:27, 1 Corinthians 6:9, 2 Peter 2:10 and Jude 1:8 are New Testament references reaffirming Old Testament Law.  Paul writes of the Law in his first letter to the church at Corinth:

Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. (6:9-10)

The fact that the homosexual is listed here is a key barrier to revisionism; however, the targeting of the homosexual needs to be placed in the context that all (you and me), if we are not born again of the Spirit through faith in Christ’s atoning sacrifice, will not inherit the kingdom of God (John 3:3-8).  The Law brings the condemnation, but God has the same solution for the homosexual as He has for you and me.  Paul states in the next verse of his letter: 

And that is what you were.  But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God. (1 Corinthians 6:11) 

Proponents of liberal “love” theology emphasize God’s willingness to forgive, often citing the adulterous woman (John 8:10-11): “‘Woman, where are they?  Has no one condemned you?’  ‘No one, sir,’ she added.  ‘Then neither do I condemn you?’ Jesus declared.”  However, Christ’s grace does not erase the Law, He concludes His conversation with the woman by saying: “Go now and leave your life of sin.”   To the blind man that Jesus healed, He said, “See you are well again.  Stop sinning or something worse may happen to you” (John 5:14).  Although, all judgment (separating the redeemed from the lost) has been given to Christ (John 5:22), the Law also remains a key revelation of our perfectly righteous, holy and loving God. 

Humanity seeks a life philosophy for happiness and freedom. The Christian worldview for maximizing one’s peace is a perfect combination - the Law and the redemptive grace of Jesus Christ.  The liberal “love” theological worldview is to expunge biblical Law and demote Jesus Christ to the equivalent of a historic sage like Mahatma Gandhi.  The free sex advocate, Aldous Huxley, erases God to gain his freedom.  Liberal “love” theology cannot erase God; therefore the Gospel of Jesus Christ must be reframed including rewriting the Law to adopt what is in reality a false freedom. 

Contradicting the hopes of the bearers of liberal “love” theology, Rudolf Bultmann offers an insightful articulation of the need for the Law as God has revealed it: 

Genuine freedom is not subjective arbitrariness.  It is freedom in obedience.  The freedom of subjective arbitrariness is a delusion, for it delivers man up to his drives, to do in any moment what lust and passion dictate.  This hollow freedom is in reality dependence on lust and passion of the moment.  Genuine freedom is freedom from the motivation of the moment; it is freedom which withstands the clamor and pressure of momentary motivations.  It is possible only when conduct is determined by a motive which transcends the present moment, that is, by law.  Freedom is obedience to a law of which the validity is recognized and accepted, which man recognizes as the law of his own being.  This can only be a law which has its origin and reason in the beyond.  We may call it the law of spirit or, in Christian language, the law of God.[xxi]

Bultmann writes that until one has appropriated the grace of God manifested in Christ’s work, he is “alienated from life, enslaved under hostile powers and in bondage to death.”[xxii]

God will not be mocked.  He wants a vibrant loving relationship with the members of His flock (John 10:27-29) and with Christian denominations.  But only the person who sees himself as a sinner can know God’s true measure of grace and we know ourselves as sinners only in so far as we recognize God’s Law.  As long as one remains blinded (Satan’s goal) from recognizing the Law, he will remain unlikely to develop the repentant heart necessary to genuinely accept the gift of Jesus Christ.  He will remain unlikely to recognize the cost and worth of Christ’s sacrifice.  Who has the authority to overturn the Apostle Paul’s judgment on the homosexual lifestyle and the destiny of those unrepentantly living in such transgression?  Is there someone today claiming a greater anointing by the Holy Spirit, a stronger unction of God’s will?  Not Rev. Dr. John Shelby Spong.  Not moderators of the United Church.

Salvation is a gift of grace.  Prayer is a gift of grace.  The peace of God is a gift of grace (Philippians 4:7).  True freedom is a gift of grace.  Faith is a gift of grace.  Everything you need is covered in the gracious gift of Jesus Christ.   If you are weary and unloved, the authentic Jesus Christ has rest for your soul (Matthew 11:25-30).  If you seek this rest from a sage, you will not find it even if looking for an eternity. 

(3) - Liberal “Love” Theology is a False Gospel of Cheap Grace Which in the End is Void of Authentic Christian Love

In FAITH TALK II: A DRAFT STATEMENT OF FAITH FOR DISCUSSION AND RESPONSE,[xxiii] The United Church of Canada declares a pluralistic, all-inclusive, all loving, deity:

The Spirit fills creation in diverse ways and makes the Divine knowable, not only to us but also to others.  We understand faith as an experience common to humanity, as a shared response to God’s self-giving; and we know that our own and other’s expressions of faith are often distorted by insecurity, intolerance and hatred. How others perceive God is often foreign to our perception.   The breadth of Spirit calls us away from isolation to consider the Spirit’s freedom of movement beyond our experience and, however our expressions of faith may differ, to act toward all with the same love by which God acts toward us.

And on their website under "Overview of Beliefs, the denomination declares:

The United Church of Canada views the religious practice of all people of goodwill with respect and gratitude. We believe the Spirit of God is at work in many different faith communities.

For Christians, Jesus is the way we know God. Our understanding is nonetheless limited by human imagination. God is greater still and works in our world by a mysterious Spirit that knows no distinction at the doorway of a Christian chapel; Buddhist, Hindu, or Sikh temple; Aboriginal sweat lodge, Muslim mosque, or Jewish synagogue.

We work together with other Christian churches whenever possible, and among people of other religions in Canada and throughout the world on matters of justice, peace, and human dignity.

Today, difference is everywhere around us and, we believe, a great cause for celebration.[xxiv]

In The Cost of Discipleship, Dietrich Bonhoeffer puts a label on the notion of liberal “love” theology.  He recognizes this liberal phenomenon as unscriptural, an assault on true Christian love and labels it cheap grace.  He said: 

Cheap grace means grace sold on the market like a cheapjack's wares.  The sacraments, the forgiveness of sin, and the consolations of religion are thrown away at cut-rate prices.  Grace is represented as the Church's inexhaustible treasury, from which she showers blessings with generous hands, without asking questions or fixing limits.  Grace without price; grace without cost!  And the essence of grace, we suppose, is that the account has been paid in advance; and, because it has been paid, everything can be had for nothing.  Since the cost was infinite, the possibilities of using and spending it are infinite.  What would grace be, if it were not cheap?  In such a Church the world finds a cheap covering for its sins; no contrition is required, still less any real desire to be delivered from sin.  Cheap grace means the justification of sin without the justification of the sinner.  Grace alone does everything, they say, and so everything can remain as it was before.  Cheap grace is the preaching of forgiveness without requiring repentance, (it is) baptism without church discipline, Communion without confession, absolution without personal confession.  Cheap grace is grace without discipleship, grace without the cross, grace without Jesus Christ, living and incarnate.[xxv]

In the above quote, Bonhoeffer was putting in his own words what The Book of Hebrews records will be the consequence of habitual unrepentant sin: 

If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, but only the fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God.  Anyone who rejected the law of Moses died without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses.  How much more severely do you think a man deserves to be punished who has trampled the Son of God under foot, who has treated as an unholy thing the blood of the covenant that sanctified him, and who has insulted the Spirit of grace?  For we know Him who said, ‘It is mine to avenge; I will repay,’ and again, ‘The Lord will judge His people.’  It is a dreadful thing to fall into the hands of the living God (Hebrews 10:26-31).

Liberal “love” theology is not a doctrine that Canadian Christians can agree to disagree on.  We will continue to receive status quo response to our prayers until the Body has purged itself of deceivers bearing a gospel of cheap grace and proselytizing a re-imaged Jesus Christ. 

For those that have eyes to see and ears to hear, the very last revelation of the Bible reads:

And, behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be.  I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last.  Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.  For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie.

I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches. I am the root and the offspring of David, and the bright and morning star. And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.

For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, if any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book:  And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book (Revelation 22:12-19).


Copyright © 2008 StandForGod.Org



[i] Mike Ensley writes in “True Love Changes You: How Jesus Christ Loved Me Out of Homosexuality,” Real Life Stories, the Exodus Impact, September 2005, Vol.3, Issue 9.

[ii] Factum of the Intervener, The United Church of Canada, Court File No. 29866, filed 11 May 2004.

[iii] Taken from the Dean Martin song “You’re Nobody Until Somebody Loves You.”

[iv] 1 Corinthians 13: 4-7

[v] James P. Hanigan, Homosexuality: The Test Case for Christian Sexual Ethics (New York: Paulist Press, 1988), p.18.

[vi] Richard Strauss, Win the battle of Your Mind (Wheaton, Illinois: Victor Books, 1984, p.10.

[vii] Ibid., p.22.

[viii] Head of church denies Resurrection of Christ! Hamilton Spectator, Nov 27, 1997, p.A2,, 4/16/2001

[ix] John Shelby Spong, A New Christianity for a New World (San Francisco: Harher, 2001), p.123.

[x] John Shelby Spong, Why Christianity Must Change or Die (San Francisco: Harner, 2001), p. 99.

[xi]  Spong, A New Christianity for a New World, p.230.

[xii] Ibid., p.84.

[xiii] Ibid., p.147. 

[xiv] Ibid., p.61.

[xv] FAITH TALK II: A DRAFT STATEMENT OF FAITH FOR DISCUSSION AND RESPONSE, Committee on Theology and Faith, The United Church of Canada, January 2005.

[xvi] Hank Hanegraaff, The Face That demonstrated the farce of Evolution (Nashville Tenessee: W Publishing Group, 1998), 22.  Hanegraaff first heard the quote in a sermon by Dr. James Kennedy.

[xvii] Aldous Huxley, Ends and Means (London: Chatto and Windus, 1938), pp.269, 270 and 273.

[xviii] Joe Dallas, A Strong Delusion: Confronting the “Gay Christian” Movement (Eugene Oregon: Harvest House, 1996), p.29.

[xix] John Shelby Spong, A New Christianity for a New World, p.57.

[xx], 08/27/08.

[xxi] Rudolf Bultman, Jesus Christ and Mythology (New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1958), p.40.

[xxii] Ibid.

[xxiii] FAITH TALK II: A DRAFT STATEMENT OF FAITH FOR DISCUSSION AND RESPONSE, Committee on Theology and Faith, The United Church of Canada, January 2005.

[xxv] Dietrich Bonhoeffer, The Cost of Discipleship (New York, N.Y, Macmillan Publishing Co., 1963), pp. 42-44.