JMH, I cannot tell you how much I can appreciate your quest for clarification, it is something that your friend should be doing as well.
Please allow me to clarify that I am not speaking out against homosexuality, nor am I a proposal 8 “champion”. Quite simply, I believe in the principle of free will.
What I am condemning is Tidd’s explanation of what is not sin. In this case, he says it is not sin to “act in accordance to your nature”, which borderlines on blasphemy. While the subject at hand is homosexuality and obviously, he means to support his view with his belief, but in support of his view on homosexuality, he made a general statement in reference to what is not sin that is unbiblical and unscriptural.
A child molester can read that statement and say it is not a sin to act in accordance to their nature. A murderer can receive that statement and say it is not a sin to act in accordance to their nature. A thief can look at that statement and receive the same understanding. So yes, his statement is as irresponsible, as it is untruthful.
Which leads me to my next point, our nature, be you queer or straight is not of God, nor is it accepted by Him. If it was acceptable to act in accordance to our nature, in the essence of our human thoughts, behavior and all that is considered carnal (Romans 8:6-7) to the Holy God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob… then heaven forbid, Christ was crucified in vain.
What need was there for Christ’s sacrifice, if God found our nature and actions accordingly acceptable?
If we embrace the principle that the very nature of man was born in sin, then we understand to act in accordance to our nature is sinful.
If we embrace the knowledge that God cannot dwell in sin (Romans 1:18), then we rejoice at the grace that Christ’s sacrifice brings, a reconciliation between God and man and salvation from the the law of sin and death (Romans 8:1-3)
Which leads me to the problem today, the wide misconception of what sin is. Sin is erroneously looked upon as a physical condition.
It is not.
It is a spiritual condition that manifests itself in physical behaviors.
Christ of Nazareth, himself defines the single definition of sin as unbelief, John 16:9 (please read in context). Paul defines faithlessness as sin Romans 14:23. Words like “sins” and “sinful” are used to describe behaviors, speech and thoughts that originate from sin.
Here’s what Christ taught:
“For a good tree bringeth not forth corrupt fruit; neither doth a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. For every tree is known by his own fruit. For of thorns men do not gather figs, nor of a bramble bush gather they grapes. A good man out of the good treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is evil: for of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaketh.” – Luke 6:44-46
If faithlessness is sin, (unrighteousness) then faithFULness is righteousness.
"For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness. – Romans 4:3 For the promise, that he should be the heir of the world, was not to Abraham, or to his seed, through the law, but through the righteousness of faith." Romans 4:13
Sin is commonly understood as a physical condition and churches today place the emphasis on correcting physical behavior, which has become legalistic form of “righteousness”. It is why legalism (the law) fails (Romans 8:3) it does nothing for what the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob truly desires from you, your heart, your faith.
Homosexuality is only one of many manifestations of today’s environment, it is the one thing churches either hail as the worst sin, or hail as an acceptance of God…neither view is correct.
Ultimately TRUE Christianity is about Christ and His Gospel of Salvation, His triumph over sin (faithlessness). His triumph over death, the wages of sin. I’ll tell you what it’s not. It’s not about the promotion or preservation of a preferred lifestyle of sexual orientation.
We are called to walk after the Spirit, not the flesh.(Romans 8) ALL who dare follow Him, MUST bear their cross.
“If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple. And whosoever doth not bear his cross, and come after me, cannot be my disciple.” - Luke 14:26-27
I wish you well in you quest for truth. One word of advice, there are MANY translations out there today that do not necessarily reflect the fullness of the translation of the Word. The KJV has shown to be consistent in the principle of the Word, most importantly; only by the power of the Holy Spirit of God can one discern the Word. (1 Corinthians 2:10-16)
Again I must emphasis for all those reading this comment: my focus is not on matters of the flesh, which homosexuality is apart of, but matters of the spirit.
“There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.” Romans 8:1