What Would You Tell A Gay Couple With Kids? – Rethinking Homosexuality (Part 2)

gay couple with kidsWhile I was serving as an associate pastor at a large church in Florida years ago two people approached me after Wednesday night Bible study.

“We’d like to become Christians,” they said with smiles on their faces.

“That’s great! Congratulations!”

“But we’re not going to stop being gay,” they quickly added. “Besides, we’ve been raising our 10 year old son together since he was born. We’re the only family he knows.”

I paused, and then gently said, “Are you familiar with what the Bible says about homosexual activity?”

“Yes. But we have a question for you. Which sin is greater: continuing with the way we choose to live our lives or having one of us move out and ripping apart the only home our son has ever known?”

How would you have answered that question?

Series Posts
Rethinking Homosexuality
What If We’re Misinterpreting The Bible? (Part 1)
What Would You Tell A Gay Couple With Kids? (Part 2)
Should An Openly Homosexual Person Be Baptized? (Part 3)
Do Gays Feel Welcome At Your Church? (Part 4)
Are Homosexuals Born That Way? (Part 5)
The Radical Gay Agenda (Part 6)

Brian loves helping Christians live thoughtful, courageous lives. He's a popular blogger, author, and pastor at Christ's Church of the Valley in the suburbs of Philadelphia.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1285338429 Jessica Mokrzycki

    Wow…I’d say that God’s love has no boundaries and to tear apart a child’s sense of security, to me, seems the greater sin. Find another church if the one you are at disagrees with it. There are plenty of churches that will help you both grow in Christ and together as a family without wanting to tear you apart by some ancient doctrine that just applied to the people in the time period in which it was written.

  • http://www.facebook.com/carlos.bello1 Carlos Bello

    I feel led to ask you are you familiar with the way God speaks to us? I offer prophecy courses to teach how to hear God’s voice. I welcome everyone just as they are. I’m so glad you are here precious ones. and you have a good questoin and that is a good question. for you to ask the Lord.. The Lord says his sheep hear his voice and follow him. I’d like to know what the Lord reveals to you after some time in prayer and fasting. Be blessed. I look forward to getting to know you and your family and I will do the same for you if you like and share what God gives me. How does that sound?

    • http://www.BrianJones.com/ Brian Jones

      Carlos, prophecy courses? No disrespect, but I think God got it right the first go around. The last thing we need is people running around trying to literally hear God’s voice. But that’s just me.

  • bblande

    A very tough question indeed. But the God I serve is the God that wants me to turn against my father if it comes down to him or Jesus. Part of my response to the gospel is obedience, so for me I’d move out….albeit not easily. This would require tons of faith and trust on my part.

    • http://www.BrianJones.com/ Brian Jones

      Really? You’d really tell this family to split apart?

      • Peter

        The first comment above by Loretta was spot on. But I would add that there has been an assumption made here by you, Brian, and others that needs to be challenged: that a gay couple and a child (or children) is a family. Give me a book, chapter, and verse from the Bible where “family” (or even “home”) is defined this way. The repentance of sin and turning from it that Jesus requires are radical, but that’s what he requires. Moreover, I would argue that the child would even benefit from seeing the gay couple repenting and figuring out some other kind of living arrangements for the child. What a great testimony to the power of God to change lives for this child. Too bad the gay couple does not seem to understand this. And it is sad that the gay couple apparently does not feel compelled to repent of their sin and change. Is this real conversion? Or is this “we’ll come to Jesus on our terms?”

  • Tim Babb

    Brian, the “greater/lesser sin” concept is a starting place, but there is an aspect here not considered (or at least mentioned) in one of the choices..A child raised by gay parents would be taught and believe that homosexuality is not sinful, (quite the opposite actually) though God says it is. Even if they are willing to not be practicing homosexuals, that could still be problematic for the child.

  • James Preece

    Which sin is greater, homosexuality or splitting a family apart? That is manipulative in both to the person it is being asked and of the scriptures. Bottom line homosexuality is a sin no matter how you look at it. Splitting a family apart isn’t a sin. There are reasons families are split apart and those reasons are sins. Paul tells a believing spouse to not leave their non-believing spouse but if the non-believer wishes to leave to allow them to go. Jesus said the only reason for divorce is marital unfaithfulness. Families split apart all the time and the children continue to be active in their parents lives if the parent wishes to. Yet, homosexuality remains to be a sin and a person cannot be a follower of Christ and continue to live sin willfully.

  • PA_John

    Perhaps I’m a little more progressive than others, but I believe that we need to evolve in our thinking. Christians are taught to live by the “rules” established centuries ago. If you’ll recall, less than 100 years ago, non-Whites were considered lesser people in our country, less than 40 years ago, our LBGT brothers and sisters were “kept in the closet” out of fear from their neighbors. Come on folks … aren’t you taught to love others? Isn’t everyone equal in God’s view? Certainly, there are acts that are truly sinful .. murder, adultery, etc., and they are codified in our law. But castigating someone for who they are, not what they chose? To me, that’s the real sin.

  • http://www.facebook.com/ron.taylor.35 Ron Taylor

    There is no greater or lesser sin here. The sin is homosexuallity. God’s Word does not change to meet our life but we must change to meet His Word. Nowhere in His Word do I read “honor your father and father or mother and mother.” On what grounds is one moving out a sin? This is the reason we have all the differences in God’s Word is because too many Pastors, Youth Pastors, Elders and etc. want to candy coat things. Homosexual lifestyle was and still is a abomination to God. That is not candy coated. Love the sinner but we must hate the sin.

  • http://www.facebook.com/carlos.bello1 Carlos Bello

    Prophecy is biblical. God wants to seek our spiritual gifts. to hear his perspective on the situation. After all this is how he affirms our identiy in Him. and it doesnt’ really matter what anyone else thinks of your life. I would rather teach some one to have an intimate relatioship with God where they could hear him. , ( literallyy) though possbile not common. God does speak more commonly with dreams, visions, and words of knowledge things like that. I asked God about homosexuality and he revealed to me in a dream what He thought of it. Dont’ know that makes any sense.

  • http://www.facebook.com/lphiles Larry Hiles

    That is a tough question. The legalist heritage that flows through my veins says the answer is plain. To ask which is worse is like asking, “Do you want your right arm or left severed from your body?” Both are going to hurt. Both are going to cause pain, but the question that remains is: What is God saying? How are we going to respond.

    However, I must also admit: Those words are easy for me to say sitting my office and not looking at a young boy struggling with very deep questions.

    One final thought: I believe the Bible says that while we were still sinners Christ Jesus died for us. It’s all good when we struggle with the socially acceptable sins. However, God can and will forgive. God can and will bring heart change through the Holy Spirit. Maybe the “church” should get out of the way and let God be God.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=622370741 Tina Kachmar

    Well, I know the Bible says homosexuality is a sin but after that it does say that God commands us to love one another in a hundred different ways. “Greatest of these is love”, “love one another as I have loved you”, “love the Lord your God with all your heart”….and so on. We are also commanded not to judge each other. I know a gay couple who has been together for almost two decades who love one another, respect each other and deeply love the Lord. I was married to a man who had none of those qualities. Which relationship is better? I don’t think it is for us to decide whether being gay is a sin, I think that is up to God and the person(s) who are gay to answer for. You’re not going to “convince” someone not to be gay. Love is love. Plain and simple. Also, it is not one of the 10 commandments so I don’t think God felt it was that huge of a deal breaker or he would have mentioned it then? (sorry had to reach someone on this comment list)

    • PA_John

      “I don’t think it is for us to decide whether being gay is a sin, I think
      that is up to God and the person(s) who are gay to answer for. You’re
      not going to “convince” someone not to be gay. Love is love. Plain and
      simple.” Amen.

  • Loretta

    What would you tell a heterosexual couple who approach you and say (with engaging grins,) “‘We want to become Christians, but we’re not going to get married. We have a very open relationship and engage in sexual relations with other like-minded couples. We don’t intend to stop this behavior.”

    You pause and then gently say, “Are you aware what the Bible has to say about fornication?”

    They answer, “Yes. But we have a question for you. Which sin is greater: continuing with the way we choose to live our lives or having one of us move out and ripping apart the only home our son has ever known?”

    How would you have answered that question?

    I realize that the scenarios are a not quite the same because the man and woman have the biblical option of marrying one another and becoming a family. The gay couple do not have that option, biblically (although in some states they have the option legally…..and in some emergent churches I guess they have the option biblically…..allegedly.) However isn’t the real issue the fact that both couples say they want to become Christians, but they are not willing to repent of the sin in their lives?

    What did Jesus say to the woman who was to be stoned for committing adultery? “Go now and leave your life of sin.” Yup I know, it’s not cool nowadays to talk about sin and repentance. I guess if we’re worried about what people will say about us, 150 years from now, or right now for that matter, we won’t address the real issue, Sssssssinnnnnnnnn! (That’s my Bible-thumpin’ preacher impersonation.) Of course, as Christians, we have to approach our fellow sinners humbly and with compassion because of our own sinful nature. We have to be careful not to put more emphasis on one sin over another (especially if we are not repentant of the various “other” sins that we ourselves engage in.)

    So is your point that the church has put too much focus on one sin (homosexuality) over others (like fornication, adultery, gluttony, gossip, etc etc?) We don’t seem to be worried about requiring folks to repent of gluttony before we accept them into the fold, right?

    Or is your point that as Christians, we can’t legislate morality (i.e. the defense of marriage act or repealing Roe vs. Wade?) The only way we can truly change society is by changing people’s hearts and minds, and we do that by demonstrating Christ’s love, right? But we do have to address sin, in our lives and the lives of our fellow Christians, don’t we?

    I’m strugglin’ here trying to figure out where you’re going with the last couple blog posts ‘cos these are the kinds of questions I have to deal with from my non-believing friends, and when my former pastor starts askin’ the very same questions, without providing any valid biblical answers, I start to get a whopper of a headache!

  • http://twitter.com/JeffreyBButler Jeff Butler

    My quick thought. “There is a third option that is faithful to God and loving toward your son. Continue to live together as celibate friends and raise the child.”

  • http://www.facebook.com/daverichmond77 Dave Richmond

    Tough question. But is it any tougher than the decision a Muslim has to make when he chooses Christ and the only family he has ever known ostracizes him? The child is going to be a victim no matter what you do. If the parents stay together you risk conveying the message that God is okay with sin. If the parents split, he may forever associate Christianity with breaking up his family.

    My gut reaction is call the parents out for trying to dictate to God the terms of their salvation. But, God’s grace would compel to help this family seek out a way to live righteously with as little harm done to the boy as possible. Doing the right thing is seldom easy, and sometimes it hurts, but in the end, it usually yields good results.

  • Matt

    You seem to have accepted the premise that a gay couple raising a child is just as legitimate as a dad and a mom raising a child. If you want to ask hard questions then perhaps that assumption should be challenged.

  • Ann

    I guess you could tell them they could become a Christian if you wanted. But you gotta convince God to get on board with you. Also He needs to remove some scripture so as not to confuse people, after all, we’re living in modern times and God needs to keep up with us.

    It might not be a bad idea to publish a new bible with some sin removed since it is not applicable in our day and age. It appears based on some comments, that the bible is outdated so I thought it would be a good idea to publish a new one that is more modern by removing what we have deemed to not be sin. Hopefully, God is on board with our interpretation of sin. Perhaps He has changed His mind. I sure hope so if this is the road we’re now taking.

    On the other hand, if we believe that God considers homosexuality a sin, telling that couple that they can become Christians is doing them a HUGE disservice. You have to convince God as well and if He’s not going to change His standards,

    Saying a prayer, making an alter call, does not make a person a Christian. Repent and believe (VERY SHORT TWO WORD SUMMARY) is what God’s word states. Unless, of course, that’s also changed in our modern and “enlightened” world.

  • MarkS

    I recently (last Monday) had a conversation with a lady from our church who just got back from a short-term mission trip to the Navajo in Arizona. One of our missionaries has a church down there. This lady shared with me an interesting situation that occurs when Navajo get saved. You see, traditionally speaking, the Navajo are a polygamist culture. Many older Navajo men have two or more wives. When they come to Christ, they are sometimes confronted with the teaching that Christians can only have one wife… and as a result these new converts stop attending church.

    If an elderly Navajo family of a man and two wives came to the Lord, would you make the husband kick one of the ladies out?

    • http://www.BrianJones.com/ Brian Jones

      No.