The Unique Struggle of Same-Sex Attraction

Not long ago, someone asked me how long I’ve been dealing with same-sex attractions. I was surprised to find a big, round number before me: 20 years. Of those 20 years, five and a half have been as a married man and as a father. I’m not gay: I’m a new creation in Christ. I am a Christian struggling with unwanted same-sex attractions (SSA). I am a pastoral worker and a Bible college student, and homosexuality has been a prominent part of my journey as a Christian. I wish that it were not so, though part of me knows that God has been using this struggle powerfully to bring me to himself.

SSA has shown me how God can work in a specific issue like homosexuality while also showing me glimpses of God’s fatherly heart and sin’s deep effects on other people. It’s given me personal and emotional insight as well as pastoral understanding. I had hoped God would have shown me these things in another, less painful and grief-stricken way, but his ways are his ways, mysterious and otherworldly, and I’m not one to tell him how he can do his job. His path has brought me to see same-sex attraction (SSA) as something both unique and something not so special.

Same as Other Sins?

In many ways SSA is similar to other forms of temptation. In God’s view of sin being equally offensive as other sins, homosexuality is not all that special. For example, in 1 Corinthians 6 Paul says:

Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.

For some, this is good news: homosexuality is no worse than other sins in the eyes of God, as all sin is equally punishable. I’m no better or worse a person for having SSA. I’m no more or less broken than anyone else simply because of the particular manifestation of my brokenness. I am no more or less saved because of it, and I need no extra portion of the Holy Spirit.

This means no one can put me down for having SSA, though it also means that I cannot put others down for not having SSA. Realizing this has been an enormous help, because over the years I’d come to believe I was the only one who understood real spiritual struggle. I would often engage in narcissistic self-talk believing that no one could understand me. In truth, God showed me that the most unlikely people understood my struggles. Married men, “manly” heterosexual men whom I had falsely assumed would judge and wound me, elderly men, and even women were able to speak blessing into my life. Understanding that my struggle wasn’t the worst thing in the world changed my attitude. SSA was no longer my purpose for being, the frequent topic of conversation (which only alienated me further from others, thus impeding my healing), or my identity. 1 Corinthians 10:13 was particularly helpful:

No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.

SSA is not common, but it’s also not uncommon. People in Abraham’s day had the same attractions and engaged in homosexual sins. I’m neither a freak, nor am I unique. My struggle is like opposite-sex sexual lust, and God’s Spirit is just as powerful to deal with it.

How Same-sex Attraction Is Unique

Having same-sex attraction, though, is unique compared to other forms of temptation. 1 Corinthians 6:18 lends some help: “Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral personsins against his own body.” Sexual immorality messes with you more than most other sins because it has a much greater power to destroy individuals, families, and churches. Sexual immorality leads to death, warping one’s understanding of God and self. There is a reason almost every New Testament epistle contains warnings against sexual immorality (e.g. 1 Thess. 4:3).

Same-sex attraction, though, is almost doubly harmful because it involves lusting after people who are not the natural object of sexual attraction. In other words, those with SSA struggle not only against lust but also to an unnatural form of lust. One person recently put it this way:

I would like to comment on the notion that . . . homosexuality should not be treated as being bigger than most other issues. It should be, because it speaks to the very identity of a person. Stealing or pride does not inherently prevent me from mating and having children. They do not cripple my sense of manhood and intrinsically modify my every relationship. [Same-sex attraction] does. So there should rightly be a greater cry and more rallying call to aid and support those who deal with it as our daily and nightly, often hellish companion.

This quote really sums up life with SSA. It’s daunting and hellish, especially if there is no one in your life you can turn to for understanding and healing. Here’s an analogy: renal specialists exist to help people with dysfunctional kidneys. That doesn’t necessarily make the patients of these doctors any more or less sick, but they need specialized treatment. A renal specialist cannot treat back pain as a physiotherapist does, but both are medical practitioners nonetheless. As for the renal patient, she knows her general practitioner would love to help if he had the skills to treat the kidney dysfunction. But he doesn’t, and she goes to the specialist as the need arises.

SSA: Both/And, Not Either/Or

I can accept that many well-intentioned people want to comfort me in the knowledge that all sin is equal in God’s eyes and that I’m no different to others. That is true, but I am also an individual with my own differences, eccentricities, and struggles with issues that few others really understand. SSA comes with a heightened sense of alienation that many others don’t experience (they’re no less valuable for not experiencing that, but it is nonetheless there).

But on the other hand, in God’s eyes, SSA is no worse or better than anything else. Surprisingly, my struggles become a gift when surrendered under the lordship of Jesus.

  • Billy Birch

    I thank you for this post.

    As someone who also struggles with unwanted SSA — and someone who sinned against a heterosexual brother in Christ due to lusting for him — I can testify to the hellish torment of the follower of Christ who struggles with unwanted SSA. I hate it; and I look forward to the Day when Christ returns — when I shall be like Him, for I shall see Him as He is (1 John 3:2), and all sin will finally be eradicated.

    Also, I find some comfort in the fact that our sovereign God has the capability to control my mind/thinking about the same sex but, for whatever reason, has chosen not to — even after praying for 17 years that He would.

    So, I pick up Christ’s cross and follow Him, denying myself daily. I follow Him when I hurt, when I’m lonely, and when I feel hopeless. He then comes to me and sustains me and keeps me in Christ. He is good.

    • Jessica

      I appreciate all that you had to say. But when you said that God has chosen not to control your mind/thinking. I have had many struggles but never once did the Lord control my thinking. He has given us free will. It is a blessing. After so many years of praying and never being delivered from those thoughts and sins means there is something you are missing, not God. God is our father and will continue to teach us the same lesson over and over until we get it. Some people never get it and therefore are stuck in a cycle of sin. But I have learned in my struggles that the only way for me to get out of the cycle is to learn the lesson and be strong-willed in what I learned and never turn away from it. I can only say to you, friend, that if you are still living in the same thought patterns and struggling with the same sin, it’s because there is something you are not changing or doing that God is trying to get through your head. God bless you and I hope you take this word to heart. It is by no coincidence that I saw this comment and made a comment myself. God is in everything we do.

      • Christopher Walker

        Jessica, I’m also someone who struggles with unwanted SSA. I appreciate your comments, but I think what you said can be interpreted in a harmful way. Why is mine and Billy’s continual struggle with our thoughts due to something -we- have failed to do? Do you really think that if we can just try a little bit harder that we can stop this? When has that ever been the solution to sin?

        I can’t speak to Billy’s personal situation, but I can speak about myself and the experiences of others. We’ve blamed ourselves for falling short of standards that we were simply incapable of meeting instead of trusting in God’s grace and power. Humanity’s whole struggle with sin, the thing we always do as humans, is to try to do go on this journey alone because we’re prideful.

        To think that we are the ones holding up our own recovery when we’ve tried everything we can think of, as if we could just find the right combination of behaviors and strategies and stop feeling this way, doesn’t that sound like pride to you?* Do you see how your suggestion can lead someone to think that way? Many of us have thought that way, and then we’ve despaired and consigned ourselves to the pleasures of the world because we blamed ourselves for failing to meet an impossible standard.

        Maybe you have to experience it to get this, but I can tell you that telling us that it’s our fault that we are tempted to lust after the same sex is not very helpful, especially to those of us who haven’t yet found a support system and are struggling in secret with shame and fear. There is hope, but it’s not in ourselves or in doing something we are failing to do. God is not so weak as to let our weakness get in his way. We struggle, we serve him, we live in trust of him, and God rescues. We don’t do the rescuing. He does.

        I’m not sure you intended to communicate what you did, so I mean no offense myself. I just want to clarify the issue and hope it gives you knowledge to better approach SSA strugglers in the future. :)

        *It’s actually kind of prideful to think we are the ones stopping ourselves from being prideful if you think about it

        • Jessica

          Think about deliverence, I am simply saying that we need to remember that sin is sin and it doesn’t need any special attention. It needs to be delt with by God. I honestly think that people are too easily offended thses days and to be honest God doesn’t really care if He offends you, He simply wants you healed and delivered, and anyway He can do that he will. I think the more we focus on the sin the more power we give it. We should encourage one another but we shouldn’t continue on about it. You have no idea of the struggles I have been through, I am telling you after years of struggle and seeing others go through similar things, the only way for deliverence is to stop giving sin such power. Instead lets focus on who we are supposed to be in Christ, once we ask for forgiveness we need to take control of our minds, we need to tell the enemy NO!!!! When it comes up in your mind, take yourself out of the situation to sin, then pray and then give it up to the Lord. Trust me, if you constantly think about your struggle you will put yourselves in circumstances to be tempted. All I am saying is give God the power in your life and not the sin!

          • Ann

            Jessica, I totally disagree with your assessment. I struggle with panic attacks, and the Lord has used I Cor 10:13 innumerable times to calm me, and divert my attention to Him. I may struggle with panic attacks the rest of my life (the attacks are cyclical, so they’re not a constant battle), but God uses them to remind me that I need to look to Christ for my strength, and that I can’t ever stop being wary of Satan and his desire to trip me up. Often, I’ve been reduced to whimpering as a result of those confounded attacks. Is there nothing with which you struggle, e.g., overeating, or impatience, etc.? Nothing??? I say this in the kindest way that I know how–I do hope that you won’t have to learn what it means to struggle mightily with a sin/habit in order to have compassion on fellow pilgrim travelers who are broken by their sin, and combat it on a daily basis…

            • Josh

              Romans 7. nuff said.

            • Jessica

              I’m sorry but I have no idea where that came from. Everyone deals with sin on a daily basis…I simply said stop giving it control. Has anyone listened to Joyce Meyer? She has some great tips and wonderful advice. Why is it that no one is more focused on salvation and having a relationship with Christ? I see so many questions about where homosexuality came from and if its genetic or not, well simply put all sin is from the devil and if you aren’t a believer then I don’t expect you to understand that statement. If you have a desire for understanding the Word of God and developing a relationship with Christ then, I and many others on here would love to pray with you and encourage you, but if you dont then why argue if its genetic? Nothing any “study” claims to have proven will ever change my mind about what the Word of God says about sin and where it comes from. I am not being close minded I am simply living by the Word of God and choosing not to allow confusion and worldly influences to affect my relationship with my savior. The devil comes to kill, steal and destroy, and he will use any way to do that. So sin is from the devil and because of the fall of man (Adam&Eve) we are to struggle in this life, I.e. sin and the consequences of sin.

        • Wendy Alsup

          Christopher, I appreciated both yours and Billy’s honest comments. Thank you for sharing this.

          • Christopher Walker

            Wendy, you’re welcome!

        • Christopher Walker

          Jessica, I can agree with that. We must focus on who we are supposed to be in Christ. Amen. :)

          Thanks again for your comments.

        • Pastor Lacie

          Blessings to you all.
          Just wanted to say that the “SIN” is not having a SSA! But the sin is giving into it! I think you all are missing it. I loved the original article. We all have a struggle whether we admit it or not. The difference in us is our willingness to “OBEY” the WORD regardless of the struggle. I’ll never hate, judge, or condemn someone with a SSA because I have my own struggles. In the eyes of God your SSA struggle is no different from my struggle. God only wants us all to consult Him about what’s right and wrong. Once we figure out TRUTH we are expected to OBEY. Whether we feel delivered or NOT. The Word never promises us that we will always “WANT” or be “ATTRACTED” to what we should have. But it does say that we should OBEY Him. I’m really sorry that you are struggling with SSA but the truth is God just wants to be Honored in your life through your OBEDIENCE….

      • Laura

        Therefore, in order to keep me from becoming conceited, I was given a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me. Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.”

        2 Cor. 12: 7-9

        I guess Paul just wasn’t trying hard enough?

    • Andrew Shanks

      It occurs to me that SSA is actually three times more potent than the “average” sin. Not only is it (1) a sin and (2) an unnatural sin that has devestating implications for a person’s very identity, as Haydn suggests, but it is also (3) a sin which is constantly accompanied by the added temptation to simply acquiesce to our culture’s acceptance of it. Those who battle SSA are fighting for their lives not only to overcome the sin itself, but to maintain a consistently biblical perspective on it.

    • Jonathan Axelsson

      Sorry for a long comment, urgent.
      Billy, my dear friend, do not be discouraged, you do not have to deny yourself, hang on! I understand that you have been involved in many difficult things in your life, perhaps even terrible experiences. Such experiences can be life damaging if not treated carefully. Maybe you grew up in a religious family and surroundings, where you had to learn early on that what you face is a sin? I myself am a believer, and I had these thoughts when I as a teenager joined a Christian church (Pentecostal). I did not grow up in a religious family though, I grew up with my parents, siblings, cousins and friends in the forest- and mountain area of northern Sweden (really back o’Bourke). And all were loving and caring. But I soon realized that I was different, it was my own “SSA.” Although I was not bullied or harassed in school or at home, I pretty soon “learned” that it was wrong. This lesson did not come from my home, it came from the church, TV, radio and newspapers, but also from people telling gay stories.

      What is important now is that you affirm your whole being; your spirit, body, soul and mind as well as your traits, memory banks and experiences; it is you, Billy! You are Loved for whom you are, not for what others say about you. Whether your SSA is a sin or not, an obstacle or not, I understand that this has created a lot of torments. There are probably as many different solutions for these problems that have arised as there are people, it depends on the person and circumstances. Try to find that way. Many people may also be likely to give you advice and guidance on how to live your life from a Biblical point of view, but I think it is important that you think about yourself, calm your mind when you are alone or with a friend you trust. Find the answers, even G-d can give guidance. He has spoken to me in strange ways. Not necessarily from the Bible or from major revelations, but from small, seemingly insignificant encounters with other fellow human beings. Take nothing for granted, even if spoken from the pulpits, it is your life and you want to live it with as high quality as possible. Your fight, you do not have to fight alone.

      Take the help of someone you can talk to, I never did that, so I felt very bad for many years. I was sent to an ex-gay therapy in England, but traveled home again when nothing helped. I was exposed to exorsism that gave me a deep depression with a suicide attempt. Now, many years later, I have restored my life, continued my life, my sexuality is the same, but no problems any more. That was thanks to my family and friends that were very supportive and understanding during my difficult time after my experiences. So, my friend, do not give up hope, whatever you feel, as long as you stay with G-d and friends you can trust, it will be alright.

      • Billy Birch

        Jonathan Axelsson,

        I appreciate very much your response. I’m doing well, friend, very well in Christ. I’ve been through some very bad days in the past five months, due to circumstances which I caused. But the Lord has been faithful to me. He has given me the strength to move beyond the past, understand that Christ bore my shame, and to look for a future with His purposes in mind.

        I thank you for your care and concern. May the Lord bless you immensely.

        • James Lanier

          I appreciate your honesty! I’m glad to hear God’s grace in showing you His love.

          I have been through dark days myself, and know the crippling force of self-condemnation. While I do not struggle with SSA, I know the power of sin and cost of giving way to it. My shame has been and is more than I can bear. But Christ delights in taking it upon himself.

          I will be praying for you, Billy! It is good to have brothers in the fight!

          Let me share two quotes I have found very helpful to my heart in the middle of pain and restoration:

          “There is no circumstance, no trouble, no testing, that can ever touch me until, first of all, it has gone past God and past Christ, right through to me. If it has come that far, it has come with a great purpose, which I may not understand at the moment. But I refuse to become panicky, as I lift up my eyes to Him and accept it as coming from the throne of God for some great purpose of blessing to my own heart.” (Alan Redpath)

          “Satan is ever seeking to inject that poison into our hearts to distrust God’s goodness – especially in connection with his commandments. That is what really lies behind all evil, lusting and disobedience. A discontent with our position and portion, a craving from something which God has wisely held from us. Reject any suggestion that God is unduly severe with you. Resist with the utmost abhorrence anything that causes you to doubt God’s love and his lovingkindness toward you. Allow nothing to make you question the Father’s love for his child.” (A.W. Pink)

          Thank you for modeling openness and a desire that the Gospel have its way with your heart.

          Proud to be your brother,


    • guy

      james well put

  • Neo

    God strengthen you in dealing with SSA, brother – it’s something impossible for me personally to even fathom, speaking as a solidly hetero dude for whom the very idea of SSA makes me want to vomit. But I do understand that it is a real struggle for some, and I pray that Christ keep you strong in your battle.

    • mel

      So Neo you have never lusted after anyone or anything ever? Lust is lust. That is the point.

      • Ex Bisexual(Saved by Grace)

        I agree with Mark. If I said to you I have never dealt with a temptation to lie. Anyone who would lie makes me want to vomit. You would think that that was unecesarily harsh towards those who have struggled in that area. Humble yourself. Though your temptations to sin may differ they are not less sinful or less detestable in the eyes of a holy God.

    • Mark

      That’s feels kind of stigmatising, Neo — if I may say, it seems that you’re doing what Hadyn is talking about — contributing to the alienation and *suffering* that comes along with an SSA struggle: like when heterosexual men say, “that makes me want to vomit.” Do you tell that to people with other temptations? Do you think that makes someone feel loved?

    • Cori

      Wow – I wish you could read your comment about throwing up through my lens. I’m the wife of a man who struggles with an unwanted SSA. While your prayers are appreciated, the sentiment you expressed before your prayer support reminds me of why my husband is STILL afraid to share his real struggle with hetero men. Because he doesn’t want to the be the cause of someone “wanting to vomit.”

      He is a real person, as is every single soul who struggles with SSA, regardless of your personal feelings. There have been plenty of times in our journey together when *I* have wanted to throw up, but not in response to my husband or his struggle – in response to the abuse that has been heaped upon him, creating this completely devastating, unwanted situation in his life.

      By God’s grace, we make it through and continue to work towards healing. It’s incredibly hard, though, to know that our journey makes people sick. :'(

      • Brian

        Your right, your husband is a real person who has feelings and emotions like every other man who deals with SSA. I struggle with it everyday and it’s really hard. It’s a battle every single day, and especially when living in a culture that is saturated not only with sex but also saturated with the acceptance of the gay lifestyle.

        I applaud you Cori for being understanding towards your husband’s SSA and it’s only by the grace of God that it doesn’t cause you to vomit, to be disgusted, and to throw in the towel on the marriage but understanding and loving towards him and help him through the struggle and battle.

        • Cori

          Thanks for your kind words, Brian. We’ve been a couple for 20 years and married for 17.5 of those years, and we’ve definitely had our ups and downs. But through it all, God’s faithfulness has been amazing – when the world (and friends) told me to leave, God told me to stay. He knew what He was doing, and I’m grateful for how He’s knitted our hearts together through it all.

          I applaud your strength, brother-in-Christ. Although I know the struggle, it’s only secondhand knowledge, still. Walking it out takes courage, commitment, and faith in our Father’s hand and plan for your life. We’ll pray for you tonight as we go to sleep.

          Cyber-hugs from people who ‘get it.’ :)

        • James Lanier

          Corri and Brian,

          While I have never struggled with SSA, I have been utterly crushed by the horror of sin in my life. I also have been made alive by the grace of God and found that He will not let me bear my shame.

          I just want you both to know that the only response someone with SSA will ever find from me is fierce love, a broken heart, deep empathy as a fellow struggler with sin, and an overwhelming commitment to showing the beauty, mercy, and cost of Calvary. Corri, please accept my heartfelt appreciation for your forgiveness and grace and love to your husband. He is SO fortunate. You model our Savior well.

          Brian, thank you for your humility. I will be on my knees fighting with all my might for your day-to-day grace in this struggle.

          May Christ receive the reward of His sufferings!

    • Haydn Sennitt

      Neo, thank you for being open and honest about your feelings about SSA. Same-sex attraction is something which is very undesirable and it should make you vomit, as sexual contact between two members of the same sex should make anyone nauseated. So too should incest, paedophilia, bestiality, and other sexual perversions. But I take your point; it is not normal or healthy and someone with a healthy sense of sexuality would – and should – find it repellant as God does.

      The challenge is to have compassion on those who have SSA- they did not choose it and many feel they have no choice but to do it because they haven’t been shown any better. Many have been sexually abused as boys and are simply re-enacting that abuse to get back the love they hungered for as abused kids. Many never had a good dad and it’s just terrible what they have gone through; stuff that would make you sick and want to cry. Many believe themselves to be gay because they have no other way to account for it and it’s all they know. Compassion is the only reponse and to love them even as their attractions seem weird, revolting, and inexplicable, to separate the person from the sin in their life as Jesus did with repentant people. SSA people really need to be loved on in healthy ways, which is where you fall into place. I find heterosexual sexual sin abominable and nauseating at times because God did not intend such things; all sin should make us sick, but true love is to look past that sickening sin and love the person so that they are no longer in bondage to it.

      Thanks, bro.

  • Pingback: Great post from someone with same-sex attraction, and how it does not define them: Jesus does. | 2steps2heaven()

  • Pingback: The Heart of SSA struggle- Gospel Coalition « Senator Q'heleth()

  • Nick

    Excellent. As a man who also struggles with unwanted SSA, but has fortunately seen much healing, I can relate to every point of this. Particularly, I think you hit the nail on the head with moving past that feeling of “nobody knows the trouble I’ve seen.” When I was able to realize I struggle with a sin, and that I can’t say that no one who doesn’t struggle with the same thing can’t relate, God really brought healing. It was through unlikely relationships and men who are very different than myself and struggle with very different things that I saw much healing and change. Praise God for his redemptive works, I too am Married now, and we are currently hoping for a child :). What a glorious savior we have! We are new creations in Christ!

    Thank you for your blog. I wish more men such as yourself were able to be vocal in a world that says men such as us don’t exist. Men who are happy living as God intended, men who have seen change, desire change, and aren’t actually “suppressed” by society as most media say.

  • Alex Guggenheim

    Hmmmm….homosexuality is no worse than any other sin (no friend, while all sins are transgressions not all sins are equal transgressions and the Bible gives the special category of abomination for some) the author the claims homosexual lust is doubly-harmful. You don’t get to have both sides of the argument. To admit that it is doubly harmful is to admit that it is doubly transgressive which is why the Bible identifies it as an abomination.

    I sympathize with your struggle with the sin of homosexuality. However diminishing the abominable nature and it’s falling into the special category as an abomination in the Bible and trying to treat it as equal to any other sexual sense is not an appropriate approach

    • Nick

      Alex, I think you have missed his point. I am a man who recognizes that homosexuality is without a doubt a sin, and without a doubt is an abomination in the eyes of the Lord. But, what is being said in that it is “no different” is that it is a sin struggle, just like struggles you might face as well. I can’t tell you the incredible help it was to me, to get past the point of feeling like I was beyond repair, that I was terribly broke, and more messed up more than any other person. Once I realized I had a sin struggle, just like anybody else, it allowed me to engage with it as a struggle that God could change. Now sure, it is a particularly and “doubly” powerful struggle, but it is a sin struggle none the less. My best friend was the greatest source of help for me in this area. When I would be sharing with him my sorrows and “why me’s”, he would gently remind me that we are all faced with sin in our lives that we must trust the Lord to change. So I would say to you Alex, if you ever speak with a man who recognizes that homosexuality is a sin, and is not living in that lifestyle, please humbly recognize that he struggles with a sin, and you struggle with sins. I recognize, you don’t want to downplay the severity of the sin, I agree; however, I don’t think I would have seen the healing I did, or be married as I am today, if the men around me said that I WAS different, that they couldn’t relate because I was particularly abominable, that would have crushed me. But instead they recognized my desire to change, that I saw it as a deep sin, and they comforted me and brought me hope and encouragement by relating to me with their sin struggles, all the while reminding that my hope is found in the restorative work of Jesus Christ.

      • Brian

        Thank you Nick for clarifying and expounding on Alex’s comment. Homosexuality seems to be seen as an “unforgiveable” sin and the worst of all sins compared to other sins that are seen as minor such as gossip and lying. Same-sex attractions and lust are deemed as worst then heterosexual lust and that is clearly not true.

        I have struggled with SSA for a long time now. I have professed faith in Christ and I have fallen so badly to the point where I believe that God won’t forgive me because I have fallen in this sin for such a long time and I have rebelled greatly. I have pursued the homosexual lifestyle and lusted after other guys and did some disgusting things that I’m so ashamed of. I have hardened my heart so much. A part of me wants to be with another guy but I know that this is not helpful to me and that God does not approve. I can’t see myself utterly throwing everything that I supposedly beleived in and read in the Word to live a gay lifestyle with another guy.

        • MAS


          When we turn from any sin and acknowlege our rebellion there is grace. You can not go “too far” … God can redeem us always. All hope is not lost brother.

          Paul was on his way to kill Christians, when God got ahold of him… I am pretty sure that gives us all hope that we can never fall beyond grace no matter what we have done. I pray for you to call upon the only one in whome any of us frm real chnage and lasting hope. Jesus can do far more than we are capable when we recognize we cant, bt what we cant he CAN>

          Blassings to you – my heart aches for your struggle, May God help you find your way back to him quickly, for all of you struggling…. there is hope because in heaven we lose this flesh that temps us so. Till then count of Jesus Christ to change you. Seek him out it is SO worth it. His word can renew us!

        • EricP


          You may struggle with SSA for the rest of your life. Don’t feel depressed because you still have SSA. Paul lived his thorn for his whole life. God forgives you for what you did and will strengthen you for the coming temptations. As trite as it sounds, take it one day at time.

        • Erica

          Brian –
          I just wanted to encourage YOU that you don’t need to beat yourself up. You will encounter struggles and your life is not going to be void of bad decisions or consequences of poor judgment. However, the writer of James tells us to consider it “pure joy” when we encounter “trials” of all varieties. Why? Because it produces steadfastness (or perseverance).
          So that, when steadfastness is achieved in us, we are made complete (or in other translations perfect)and entire lacking/wanting nothing.
          If Jesus Christ is your Lord and Savior and you have already laid what you are struggling with at his feet, then trust He will lead you by the Holy Spirit to continue seeking God the Father.
          And perhaps you can change your label from “struggling homosexual” to the identity He gave you as a new creation “child of God.”

      • Alex Guggenheim

        While I am glad for anyone to mature in their walk so that besetting sins, particularly abominable ones, are met with faith and perseverance, re-categorizing homosexuality being equal to all other sins is Biblically errant and spiritually damaging.

        You don’t have to pre-occupy yourself with re categorizing sins to feel good toward God. He forgives all sins, lesser sins and abominable ones. The point isn’t about us and whether we have “equally bad sins” that are part of our struggle. It is about God’s grace that deals with lesser and greater sins, all sin of all kinds. He both forgives and remedies.

        To re-classify something is injurious to the truth, no matter how sincere you are or how much you wish to serve God. If you have a problem with an abominable sin, God’s grace forgives and with remedy this as you mature. It is not, “reclassify your sins and he will forgive you your sins” or “just say it is equal with all other sins and don’t feel so bad and he will forgive you your sins” but “confess (say what God says) your sins and he will forgive you your sins and cleanse you from all unrighteousness”.

        P.S. And to those adding to the list of abominations before God, as you can see there is more than one abomination if you are struggling with other abominations and not the perversion of homosexuality.

        • Steve Sanders

          Alex, brother you missed it again. You acknowledged his point correctly in your first post when you said, “homosexuality is no worse than any other sin…()… the author the(n) claims homosexual lust is doubly-harmful.”
          The very thing you are arguing about is what the author was acknowledging. He’s not re-categorizing it, he’s actually agreeing with you that it’s an abomination but on the other hand it is a sin from which there is forgiveness. You are arguing a point that does not need arguing brother.

          • Ex Bisexual(Saved by Grace)

            Agree with steve. If you prefer to preach on the degrees of sin rather than the redemptive power of the gospel then remember this there is only one sin that is considered unpardonable and this isn’t it. No one is denying the sinfulness of it. The author is merely displaying that it is not beyond grace. It is not the one sin so abominable that God can’t redeem.

        • melody

          Alex you have an abominable sin that everyone can see but you. It’s like having a big slimy booger hanging out your nose but telling everyone else that sneezing is bad.

        • EricP

          I think I agree with Alex, if I read him correctly. Alex, correct me if I’m wrong, but you are saying, “Don’t change doctrine to feel better. God already forgives all sins. Changing doctrine will create bigger problems.”

          It’s a balance of theological truth and compassionate grace. We need both.

          • Hannah

            Certainly we don’t change doctrine to feel better, but isn’t it entirely possible that what we have believed to be doctrine (the differentiation of sin) isn’t doctrine at all and this article is actually correcting that?

            • EricP


              That is quite possible. The temptation I’m personally dealing with is changing doctrine to fit what I’m seeing. I know several Christian TS’s and gays that have been kicked out of their houses and churches. I’ve heard their suicide attempt stories. It makes me wonder if we are really using the gay/ts-thumping verses (Rom 1:27, 1 Cor6:9) correctly.

            • EricP


              I’m new here and I haven’t figured out the regular cast of characters. I just went back and read some past posts and want to thank you for being a voice of reason and compassion.

    • mel

      There are six things that the LORD hates, seven that are an abomination to him: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that make haste to run to evil, a false witness who breathes out lies, and one who sows discord among brothers. Proverbs 6:16-19

      The list for abominations goes on through out the bible until we are all included.
      I think that means that Jesus died for all sins. To not recognize our own abomination is a huge mistake and makes it impossible to share the gospel.

      The author saying that it is a sin just like any other means it does not get reclassified love as the secular world is doing.

      In your effort to make your sins not as bad as his you have completely missed the humility and total submission of the author to God’s word.

      • Jessica

        Why should we debate over whose sin is bigger? God is the only one who decides forgiveness. We were made with finite minds and as much as I enjoy studying the word, it will not give me any sort of power to decide whose sin is unforgivible. I appreciate your wanting to understand sin in attempts to over-come it and notice it when it comes, but if you have accepted Christ and repented for your sins then you should have no fear of going to hell and therefore will not commit the unforgivible sin, which is denying Christ. Sexual sin hurts, every sin hurts, but they have their own ways of accomplishing one goal-to get us far away from the Lord. And to be honest all we need to be doing is encouraging one another to look to Christ for the answers. Stop worrying about who knows more than the other and who has never the sin you are struggling with…that is all pointless…remember that it is all a trick from our enemy, the devil, and the only way we can fight him and overcome our struggles is by truly giving it all up to the Lord, repenting, even if you have to repent every minute, do it, and everytime you do it, re-give the sin up to the Lord. If you will be faithful and show the Lord that you are faithful He will then be faithful to you and you will be free from this heavy burden. It takes work! We need to help each other with this and stop letting ourselves get sidetracked. God bless you all.

        • mel

          Jessica the replies have posted out of order. My point was that there isn’t a “bigger” sin unless it is unrepentant.

          Unrepentant arrogance and pride is a much bigger deal than repented same sex attraction.

    • Billy Birch

      Scripture nominates the following as “abomination” as well:

      arrogance (Prov. 16:5)
      kings, emperors, presidents who “do evil” (Prov. 16:12)
      pride (Prov. 6:17)
      lies (Prov. 6:17, 19; 12:22)
      the murder of the innocent (Prov. 6:17; Jer. 32:35)
      the heart and intellect of a person who devises wicked plans (Prov. 6:18; 15:26)
      the disposition that loves to run toward evil (Prov. 6:18)
      someone who causes division in a family (Prov. 6:19)
      idolatry — worshiping any thing or any one other than the triune God (1 Kings 21:26; Ezekiel 18:12)
      perversity (Prov. 3:32)
      cheating (Prov. 11:1; 20:10, 23)
      crooked, corrupt minds (Prov. 11:20)
      wicked people offering a sacrifice unto God (Prov. 15:8; 21:27)
      adultery (Ezekiel 22:11)

      Singling out homosexual desire as “the” abomination above all other sins is not scriptural.

      • Geoff

        If you look at these sins and think about why they may be “abominations” I think it’s probably because they are things that end up embedding a person in sin and controlling their life. Abominations are basically things you can’t just take back and say, “Well, I won’t do that next time.”

    • Charles Woodward

      I wasn’t aware that the atoning and propitiating work of Christ’s life, death, resurrection, and ascension only applied to some sins and not others.

      I must have misread…

  • John Dyer

    Dr. Stanton Jones, professor of psychology and provost of Wheaton College, gave a great talk last week this subject, and he included links to to quite a few excellent followup resources:

    • EricP

      Just read it. It is a good talk. If you are reading the comments, take a minute and read it.

  • Sue

    Thanks so much for this posting. We live is such a sexually saturated world now and it is soooo nice to hear a godly, actually helpful approach to dealing with all the sin out there. I’ve never struggled with this same-sex attraction, but I have had many friends and relatives that do. Some feel true remorse for it, and others think they were “born that way”. We are all born with a sin nature, the curse of Adam. But praise God who broke that curse through the shedding of His precious blood on that cruel cross!!!!!!!

    • Jessica

      Thank you Sue! I couldn’t agree more!

  • Mark

    Thank you for this post. There is a lot more that goes on in the church in terms of sexual struggles, including SSA, but it is all hush hush for a variety of reasons. As believers united to Christ and thereby to one another as covenant children we have a responsibility to “bear one another’s burdens” and to “encourage one another” which is difficult to do if people don’t know one another and commit to fulfilling the law of Christ to love one another. Stuff swept under the rug prevents the church from being what the church ought to be in either showing compassion toward the repentant (as in the subject of this post) or in church discipline toward those who are not.

    • EricP


      At what point should church discipline kick in? I’ve been struggling through 1 Corinthians on this very point. It’s clear that we are to go out among the unrepentant and win them to Christ. It’s less clear (to me) about when to kick out the unrepentant. The one person Paul says to kick out of the church does a sin worst than the unsaved would do. Not only was he sexually immoral, he was abusing the grace of God to sin more. The rest he says would not inherit the kingdom of God. Obviously, if we were talking about elders or leaders, there’s a different criteria.

      • Christopher Walker

        I think it’s helpful to keep in mind that there is a distinction between unrepentance and struggle. I may struggle like Paul with a thorn in my side for the rest of my life, but that does not mean my heart and mind aren’t in the right place.

        It’s a balance. You don’t want to treat besetting sins like this as inconsequential (the fire insurance view of grace and sanctification), but you also don’t want to treat people who genuinely struggle and want to be free as unrepentant (the legalistic view of grace and sanctification). That they want to be free and acknowledge it as sin to God means they are repentant, imho.

  • Paul Cummings

    Thank you for having a heart of compassion for those struggling with this particular temptation.

  • Jonathan

    SSA might be something that is never overcome in this lifetime. However, someone putting their identity in homosexuality and practicing it, is a huge problem. It’s one of the examples/conclusions of how corrupt man really is

  • Dawn Coates

    I love you, brother, and admire your courage. I will keep you, your family, and your ministry in my prayers. I look forward to celebrating with you in eternity. Thank you so much for sharing this.

  • David Brainerd Pritt

    I am glad this believer came out, and presented a view of struggling with sexual sin, and more specifically sexually immoral sin. What I cannot understand is how he has qualified in his mind that he is fit for the Pulpit (as evidenced in the “About” section). No Reformed, Evangelical, ruling body would ever , or should ever ordain him to the Ministry of a Church. If he is going through seminary to simply augment his own ministry of helping gays/lesbians learn how to free themselves, and through the renewing of their regenerated mind in Christ, repent — turn the other direction– and live a lifestyle pleasing to God, that is one thing. If he is in Seminary, with the hope of pastoring a Church, then biblically he is unqualified. I really question why The Gospel Coalition runs these articles. It is a small endorsement of a “lifestyle” where people were not “Born this way” but chose to rebel openly, and allow thier passions and tactile senses to run amok. The culture has been training our children for decades that this is “OK”. I am re-iterating: My only dissent is that this individual should thoroughly examine whether God is calling him to the pulpit, or to just complete biblical training to augment his already established “Liberty” ministry.

    • mel

      Why because his life is not acceptable to you? He is married to one wife and leader of his family. He is honest and open about his struggles with sins. He does not try to make them something else.

      ALL sexual sin is sexually immoral sin, including yours.

      Honest pastors speak of lust being something that everyone, well other than a eunuch maybe, struggles with and anyone that says they do not is a liar. Lying is a HUGE sin.

    • Mark

      David BP — what you’re saying is total rubbish, utter skubala. He has temptations; he has been courageous and brave to share them publicly (a manly thing to do). Temptations aren’t sin. If this article is representative of what he’s usually like, the he’s a terrific candidate for ministry. He’s not living falsely, like so many of us do, pretending we don’t have this or that lust or sin.

      It seems to me that a truly disqualifying issue would be the kind of judgmentalism that would seek to prohibit broken people (= everyone with a pulse) who also happen to be very open and honest (= not many; but Hadyn sure does qualify) from engaging in ministry.

    • Charles Woodward


      On what biblical basis can you even begin to defend this? I’m guessing you don’t ever have to battle lustful thoughts about women who are not your wife?

      Amazing! You are the first man to ever nail sexual purity like that! Well, Jesus of course…but then you.

      By your reasoning every man is disqualified from pastoral ministry because they have to fight against lustful urges. Praise God you’re here to shepherd us all! Well, Jesus of course…but then you.

      On a serious note. Yes the above words are satirical. But my hope is they point out the absurd and unbiblical nature of your post.

      Take the log out so you can see the speck.

      • paul Cummings

        …and…seems like David, (Saul)Paul, Moses, Jacob, Peter…all did some pretty sinful things and were “quite” useful to the Kingdom…

    • Rachael Starke

      What a heartbreaking response. A man (and wife) knowing that his identity in Christ can free him to talk openly about his struggles and how the gospel empowers him? I’d go to that church.

      • Nick

        I would too.

        • Ali

          Me too.

          • Luke Johnson

            Me too x 1000.

  • Jay

    As someone that has been struggling with SSA what seems like forever now. This article was so needed, not only for the Church, but also for me too. It’s been a struggle I have wanted to get rid of forever.

  • Melody

    Thank-you for sharing this. I don’t have this particular struggle, but it’s helpful to know a little bit of how people who have it are going through.

  • Kahn

    homosexuality is not a sin. you are monsters for thinking so.

    • Mark

      Thank you for showing us the way of tolerance, Kahn.

    • Ex Bisexual(Saved by Grace)

      Actually it is Kahn. You can reject that on whatever basis you determine morality, but according to the true and living God of the bible it is sin.

  • Hannah

    Beautiful, thoughtful, engaging piece Haydn. Thank you for your transparency. I have one additional question that follows what you alluded to about the need for special understanding and a unique counseling approach when helping someone struggling with SSA.

    Have you found, as a man with ssa, that it is easier for you engage women as confidantes and counselors than men?

    I’ve often wondered how the typical “rules” of men counseling men and women counseling women would apply in cases of SSA. It seems to me that one would need greater flexibility seeking out a counselor especially if the very issue you are struggling with would put you in a compromising situation–at least mentally and emotionally. Is this assuming too much?

    • Haydn Sennitt

      Hannah, thanks so much for your question- and I love the fact that your name is a palindrome! This article that I wrote for TGC is a boiled down version of a blog post which I wrote in July ( If you wish to see more of the nuance in what I said please read that version as TGC imposed a 1,200 word limit.

      It’s interesting how people react to blog posts like this: men are much more likely to get theological and want to debate (though some get it, especially those with SSA, older men, and those aware of their own vulnerabilities and God’s fatherly heart) while women of all ages typically get it much quicker and deeper, even though they themselves are not struggling with the issue.

      My counsellor is an older man who is typical of those who ‘get’ my testimony straight away. I don’t know entirely why, but God has more often than not used older white (Anglo) men like that to bring about healing in my life- mostly because the source of much of my emotional, sexual, relational, and spiritual wounds was an older Anglo man, my biological father. That’s not to say he’s responsible for my choices or that he is a monster (I need to forgive him and let go of much bitterness), but that is how it has turned out. Women have increasingly spoken blessing to me, including wife and others like a pastor at church, but it is predominantly men and even men I have been attracted to who are heterosexual who are safe! It’s an odd way of how God does His healing work, but when those good-looking ‘straight’ men speak to me blessing by their words and actions, it frees me from slavery to lust as they become no longer objects of attraction but people made in God’s image. And while many of those straight guys remind me of the people who wounded me in the past (which, in turn, lead to my broken sexuality) their freely given love of me and respect of my person feeds me deep down. It feeds my need to be affirmed, etc. That also teaches me that I don’t need to sleep with a man to get his friendship, and that especially in the past was a very hard thing to unlearn but liberating to come to terms with.

      But the love and affection of my brothers in Christ is only something I can receive without sexually corrupting because I first have the love of my heavenly father in Christ. If I were stranded on an island like Robinson Crusoe that honestly would be the only love I could draw upon, and to be honest the love of others is unreliable (Jer. 17:5), especially in these latter days when the love of many grows cold and love of self is paramount. Love of others is an added bonus, but the Shepherd is the one who ultimately is able to give me what I need. He thankfully gives me mini-shepherds who are Christ with human flesh on too :)

      I know a lot of people don’t understand what I am saying and will disagree with it. That often comes when people are thinking with their heads and not with their hearts, and being legalistic or even blocking out the possibility of change because they haven’t experienced it and hardened their hearts against it. I even found it gobsmackingly hilarious here to see someone saying I shouldn’t pastor a church because I struggle with (this) sin- in that case he should resign his tenure because he isn’t sinless (as his comments demonstrate) and reflect on why so many don’t want to come to church because some Christian believers think themselves holier-than-thou and above struggle. BUT HEY! 1 Corinthians 10:12-13 says no sin is uncommon to man or God for that matter, which means that those with SSA can be forgiven, understood, redeemed, and sanctified even though same-sex attraction is unideal and disordered and sinful to act upon.

      • Mark Pertuit

        Great article, Hadyn — thank you for writing this, and for your enjoyable rejoinder!

      • Hannah

        Thanks for the thorough reply–in reflecting on my original question, I suppose it’s all too easy to jump to conclusions in any realm of gender/sexual identity. It is so important to remember that healing comes to the whole person and God uses precisely who we need in the time we need to accomplish his work. Thanks again for your transparency.

      • Anthony

        I feel sorry for you. You are never going to find any happiness with another person because what you are doing, in effect, is trying to write with your right hand when you are clearly left-handed. You are putting yourself on a path of shame and misery, and as a gay man, I only have one life to live, and I don’t intend to waste it on such foolishness. Good luck to you.

        • Haydn Sennitt

          Oh Anthony I never have a need of luck- I have the Lord Jesus Christ. Unhappy? I do not regret coming out of homosexuality because it was a world of sadness and misery. Are people born gay? No, and here’s why:

          1) no evidence has come within coo-ee of establishing this. One researcher, Simon LeVay (a gay scientist) though he had found a ‘gay brain’. He discovered in the brains of dead homosexuals an enlarged part of the brain that was non-existent in the brains of heterosexuals. HOWEVER he said the conclusion that gay people are born thus was non-conclusive- in fact the differences could have been caused by the CHOICES they were making to live as gay people. In recent times this has been validated by research coming out on the plasticity of the brain (e.g. ‘The Brain that Changes Itself” by Norman Doige and “Memoirs of an Addicted Brain” testify). LeVay actually stated this publicly but the cat was already out of the bag and people wanted to use the research to justify all sorts of things (

          2) Chromosomal and hormonal evidence has produced nothing;

          3) studies of identical twins (where one twin is gay) have not demonstrated a causal link- in fact in only 20% of cases where one twin is gay the other one is so. For more information on this you can read material refuting ‘Gay Christian’ theology books by Joe Dallas and the website

          The assertion that people are born gay is also false: just because I am “born” into something (e.g. I am born into a home of poverty, or a baby is born to an alcoholic mother) does not mean that what I am born into is normal, normative, health-inducing, or commendable. Even being born wealthy is not necessarily commendable! Saying you’re born gay means you have no control over anything because if you are born that way and have no say over who your sexual partners are then what control do you have over anything else? Saying you’re born gay is just an attempt to evade responsibility for your choices or because you feel that you have no choices. And really, that is not about me and my happiness- and how arrogant to think that you know anything about my happiness just by reading one article of mine. I rejoice at no longer living as a gay man and now having a gorgeous wife and two lovely daughters. You cannot dismiss that imply because you have had no taste of it.

          • Anthony

            So you say you have a wife and two kids, let me ask you, when you have sex with your wife, are you interested in her sexually, or do you have to think about other men to get erect? If the latter, then you are still gay. If the former, then maybe you were never gay in the first place. And while I choose to be in a relationship, I don’t choose what gender I’m attracted to. I only see my female friends as just that, friends. Nothing more and nothing less. Stop trying to perpetuate this lie about how being gay is something to overcome. Lots of gay people left the “heterosexual lifestyle” because they were lying to themselves about who they are, and they realized that they belonged with someone of the same sex in order to be truly happy. Don’t disparage others’ experiences when you try to assert these outrageous and damaging claims.

            • Haydn Sennitt

              Anthony I am not giving you any insights into my private sex life, particularly when you are not inquiring from an interest in being healed. I am very much attracted to my wife and am rarely attracted to other women (and I am glad I am not attracted to lots of women, otherwise I’d be trading one idol for another). That’s all I think you need to know!

          • Anthony

            You are attracted to both men and women? Well that means you’re bisexual.

        • Brian


          First off you don’t put all your happiness into another person. There will be times in which that other person will let us down and what happens then? You should be happy regardless of whether you are with someone or not.

  • Selena

    I can not adequately express what I feel by reading your blog but I can say, thank you for putting into words the things that I have felt over the years. I am almost in tears at this moment. God bless you and keep sharing the truth of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

  • David

    First of all, thank you for this article! I am a youth minister that struggles with SSA, and as you know it is a struggle. I still like women and know in my heart I will find my wife. But there is this darkness, this part of me that won’t let myself be free enough to give myself to somebody. I feel I have to “get over this hump” and when that is over I can move forward.

    The sin, is the sin and I want to follow God at all costs. I know there is a reason that I have these feelings and is part of His bigger plan but I am scared. Scared to death of how others will treat me. Scared of why my family will think. Scared of what my teenagers will think. Scared of if I will get fired for telling the truth. I don’t like to think of it as coming out because I have no intention of living a “gay” life style. I would like to think of it more as coming clean with my struggle. I pray that God will give me the strength and support system to go one. Like on of you said… I feel alone sometimes, that nobody understand the sheer torment of having these feelings that go against what God calls us to be. It down right sucks!

    • Christopher Walker

      Hang in there David! Hopefully you can find a local support group. If not, there are actually teleconference support groups out there. It’s -very- important to find someone you can feel safe to talk with.

      Don’t look at telling people as if it’s some big event. You aren’t obligated to share with anyone you don’t want to, and you don’t have to tell everyone at the same time. You don’t have to and probably shouldn’t tell your teenagers until you’re a lot further along your journey.

      And don’t feel like you have to be ‘cured’ or become ‘perfect’ before you can marry, though it may be wise to find a support group first. Just remember, marriage can’t ‘fix’ you, so don’t expect it to.

    • Perry

      I like the way you put it David, come clean. I encourage you to come clean. It took me almost 30 years to come clean, then the real healing started. God can not heal us if we stay in the dark. Step into his marvaleous light.

  • David P

    I think this was a wonderful article. It really helps me to be able to explain when witnessing or talking about the church, Christ, and its relation to homosexuality and SSA.
    However, I will differ on theology. While sin is sin, and it carries the same ultimate punishment and without Christ condemns us to hell. THe statement that “All sin is equal in God’s eyes” and the common statement that all sin is equal is not Biblical. The Bible clearly delineates that God has different views of sin, and hates some sin more than others as shown in Psalms. Its also says God judges the heart of a man meaning he knows the intention and the situation.
    Often times though this theology is not intentional its is just not clearly stated. All sin separates us from God, any one sin (sinful nature included) dooms us to hell, and God cannot even be in the presence of sin. HOwever, sins are not all the same in God’s eyes.

    As a side note please do not think this is a bash of SSA, it is only a theology correction to that one statement.

  • EricP

    Thank you Haydn for this post. I’d like to point out that transsexuals are also worthy of discussion and compassion. The topic causes a lot of confusion and hatred. I can’t do even an adequate introduction here, but I would urge the church to be a welcoming home to a group of people without many friends. The TS suicide rate is 31%. The attempt rate is over 70%.

  • Karli

    I think Al Mohler said it best:
    “I want to speak honestly to those who are struggling with homosexual affection. You must know that this is sin, and you must recognize that your affections are corrupted by sin. Even in your own heart, you can probably never even separate your desires and impulses in terms of inner motivation and affection. Like all of us, you are a sinner in the midst of a sinful world, but don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t change. Becoming heterosexual is not salvation, but the miracle of regeneration and sanctification will produce, by God’s grace, the right affections in your heart and desire. Knowing what God has declared to be objectively right and objectively wrong, we must direct ourselves—whether our sinful sexual profile be heterosexual or homosexual—toward the objective glory of God as revealed in his Word. We must claim the promises of God and seek God’s glory in every dimension of our being.”

  • Samantha

    Thank you for writing this – it really opened my eyes. It is so common to hear stories of men who identify as homosexual, however instead of seeking grace and to pursue a family life, they either retreat into singlehood (which is obviously an acceptable, although lonely, option if you can’t see yourself married to a woman) or entirely embrace their SSA and live a homosexual lifestyle. I have never heard of a man who is happily married and still struggles with SSA.

    Personally as a wife, I think I would feel hurt if this was a struggle my husband had, but only in the same way that I am hurt by a pornography addiction or would be devastated to find that he is attracted to another woman. I commend your wife for understanding your struggle and supporting you, and I know that in heaven all will be made complete.

    • Anthony

      I’m glad most gay people realize this is complete nonsense. I’m gay and I have a boyfriend and I couldn’t be happier. Enjoy living a repressed pathetic life!

      • Ex Bisexual(Saved by Grace)

        So I guess we are to assume that you are the authority on what a satisfactory life should look like? I guess you have a point it would have been pathetic for Jeffrey Dahmer to repress his desire to kill. It would have been pathetic of Sandusky to repress his desires to molest. It would be pathetic for us to repress Iran’s technological advancement. Firstly, who is to say that everyone saved from SSA has repressed desires? The Lord can and in some cases does completely resolve any such desire. Secondly, you base your standard of living on a false dichotomy. That is that either we indulge our desires or we are unhappy and unfulfilled. False.

  • John G Christensen

    Some are simply not called by Jesus to “mating and having children”; some are called to other things. If the Lord, the Great [General Practitioner] cannot help adequately to resolve struggles with SSA, then it’s time to consider whether this struggle is actually resistance to His design. When Jesus’ followers need “specialists” to work them through a lifetime of struggling, then something is out of line. This is not His freeing gospel for every man. Jesus sets us free. Sometimes He sets us free to follow Him in paths that don’t look like the average straight married guy next door. That’s okay, right? Modern man is afraid of and fails to accept the roles of God’s set apart ones. (Actually, this has been the case since Bible times, too.) This should not be so in His church.

    • mel

      No John, God is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow. Some sins do not cease to be sins just because someone wants to add “modern” in front of the behavior. He made us male and female because that is the way that He wants it to be and that is how we multiple.

      • Anthony

        That is exactly why a MINORITY of people are gay. If it were the majority then it would be a problem but that isn’t the case.

    • JohnM

      Some may not be called to marriage and family, but no one is called to homosexuality, just as no one is called to porn addiction, no matter how hard the temptation may be to shake. Those who are addicted to heterosexual porn deserve the same sympathy as those with same sex attraction, no more, no less. Neither deserve the deceit of having their illicit desires affirmed.

      “If the Lord, the Great [General Practitioner] cannot help adequately to resolve struggles…”? Well now. There is nothing inadequate about what God can do, but there are things God does not do. Is it just possible that resolving our “struggles” with things He has told us are wrong is one of them? Perhaps when we sadly dwell on how we struggle with wrong desire what we are really doing is just more dwelling on the subject of our desire. That may even include when we pray. When we’re always praying in effect “Lord, Lord, help me stop!” then maybe we’re just keeping the subject of our temptation always at the forefront of our minds. And with no real intention of avoiding it.

      • Anthony

        No, it is NOT the same thing. No wonder the younger generation is leaving the church in droves. You fail to understand that homosexuality is NOT something to be overcome. It is an inherent part of a person’s being. It’s like being left-handed, it’s not the norm, but it’s there.

        • JohnM

          Anthony you’re partly right – it is not the same thing in a way. Hayden Sennit identifies the way in which it is different when he says “…it involves lusting after people who are not the natural object of sexual attraction”.

          On the other hand it is (we are) the same in that since we’re all a part of a fallen, warped humanity sin is an inherent part of every person’s being, however that sinfulness may be manifested for a given individual. Proclivity may not be a choice, but our actions are. So are the thoughts on which we dwell. Furthermore, sin can be overcome. Questions of whether it is a process or can be instantaneous and to what extent sinfulness can be overcome in this life are intermural issues for Christians. However, all agree it begins with confessing sin for what it is and not pretending there is nothing wrong with it.

    • Ex Bisexual(Saved by Grace)

      Is your suggestion then that the writer of this article needs to divorce and go down a path of singleness? It certainly doesn’tsem that commiting a sin such as divorce would be an acceptable response.

  • Anthony

    You people are unbelievable. What you are trying to do is not to help people “turn away from sin,” what you are doing is the equivalent of trying to make a left handed person write with their right hand. You are doing nothing but causing people who have absolutely nothing wrong with them into a life of shame and depression and you keep telling them to “overcome,” but they can’t “overcome” because their SSA is a part of them just as opposite sex attraction is a part of you

  • Karin

    What we so often forget is that we all have to turn away from sin…no matter what the sin looks like, we all need the help, grace and sacrifice of a loving Savior. Christ died for ALL sin…ALL. Creating exceptions to “all sin” is declaring God’s grace and sacrifice, his forgiveness and salvation, as not “big enough” for some sins.

    I am the wife of a man who struggles with sexual addiction and SSA. A man I have loved and been in a relationship with for 18 years. A man who has lived a double life for the last 3 years of our marriage. I deal with the painful wounds of betrayal, lying and rejection. He is choosing to walk away from sin, from the acting out, from the falling into temptation…He is seeking healing from addiction and relying on Christ for his strength, trusting that Christ’s sacrifice IS enough, even for the mistakes he has made… See, temptation is not the sin…we are all tempted and we have all fallen. So I choose to TRUST the grace of MY Savior…it is enough to cover and enough to heal the brokenness we experience as sinners.

    Two comments I wanted to address….@Anthony, I understand your point, however, it is not that “we” are trying to force a change. As humans, we have a sinful nature…we are prideful, we have anger, we are lustful, we lie and behave selfishly…we all do. The point of walking away from SSA, is recognizing that we all have selfish desires that we are called to turn away from. These are traits that sin created in us that we are called to surrender. SSA is no different. It is just a specific manifestation of lust, which we are called to lay aside because it seperates us from God by causing distration and confusion of who our First Love should be. We are ALL called to overcome our sin, our struggles, no matter how acceptable to society it is, to God it is still sin. In my husband’s case, HE is choosing to surrender his life of sin and accept God’s grace. It is upside down from what the world tells us, because in that surrender, there is not shame and depression, but forgiveness and freedom. Shame and depression occur when we can’t forgive ourselves and let our struggle overwhelm us…I don’t want to sit on the judgement throne…it is not my place, not your place, not our neighbors place. I don’t make the rules, but I want to follow them. Sadly, what spurs this type of response is that you have seen Christians who are quick to judge, slow to love and even slower to extend the same grace they were offered. It breaks my heart that the Church has not done a better job knowing how to love…we classify and judge, rather than love. I am not suggesting an attitude of tolerance, we know God doesn’t tolerate sin…but that is ANY sin…and we also know that Christ’s blood was shed to cover that sin…ANY sin. His sacrifice was NOT selective.

    • Anthony

      No Karin, you completely didn’t answer my point. If you tell a person with SSA they cannot be in a relationship and they are forced to stay single, no wonder they are not happy in life! You are depriving them of something all humans want and desire and consider essential to happiness.

      • Brian

        Anthony, I have SSA and I know that I would not be happy being with another guy. I have tried it and it leaves me empty and guilty, not happy as you claim. There is a difference between what you consider essential to happiness versus what is actually GOOD for you. Pursuing a homosexual relationship is not good for me. I may be tempted to be with another guy but it will not benefit me, it wouldn’t profit me. What’s so happy about being in a homosexual relationship, considering if you look at the fact that you don’t see many older middle age men in a relationship. Either that or these old men are hanging out in gay bars leaving the bar before closing going home with just about anyone yearning for someone, anyone just to not be alone. Let’s be honest this gay lifestyle is a lifestyle considered mainly for the YOUNG. And your not going to be young before. Your not going to be good looking forever, or have hair forever, or have such a muscular, lean physique forever. Just like fashion models in the industry flaunt their young good looking selfs, homosexuals do too not knowing on the other side of life is the curse of aging and losing the youth that was so flaunted. All this lifestyle does is suck up your young life (youth)leaving you empty and dry when you reach middle age. The lifestyle promises so much but delivers so little.

        • Anthony

          Dude. There are plenty of middle aged gay people in relationships. If you’re so worried about having kids, you can adopt. Nothing wrong with that. There are many good wholesome gay guys out there (I’m one), you just have to look for them.

          • Brian

            It’s not really an issue about having kids or an issue concerning wholesome gay guys. The issue is that I can’t see myself living this lifestyle.

            • Anthony

              Why is this called a lifestyle? I mean seriously, because it’s a guy instead of a girl, it’s a lifestyle? Genitalia is that important to you? I’m 21 and I’m perfectly accepted by my friends; it’s not an issue among people my age. I guess you can stay single if you want, but all I know is I would not want to be the girl that finds out that my boyfriend is gay.

            • Anthony

              I mean seriously man, I don’t fall in love with a person’s race or their gender, I fall in love with the PERSON.

    • EricP

      Great response Karin.

  • Brian

    Anthony, you may be accepted by your friends and may not struggle with it but there are some, including myself. When you say “I guess you can be single if you want” you make it sound like it’s bad to be single. I would much rather be single then be miserable in a relationship. Naturally a girl would not want to be with a guy who has SSA but it takes the grace of God in a person’s life to love that person and go through the good and the bad as you would in any relationship or marriage.

    • Anthony

      I never said being single is bad. But being single FOREVER is not good. Humans are not meant to be alone like that. It’s not fun.

      • Brian

        Who said being single forever is not good? Your right humans are not meant to be alone and we should have friendships with others but there is a big difference between a friendship and an actual loving, intimate relationship in either a dating or marriage. It’s not fun to be in a dating relationship or marriage that is awful and nothing good coming out of it. Your better off being single. Some people are better off that way because they do not need to be in a relationship but considering that they feel so alone and so desperate not to be single they go from relationship to relationship. Something is wrong with that. It’s ridiculous when you hear of cases where a person is married 4 or even up to 8 times!!

        • Anthony

          I understand what you are saying, but you cannot have the expectation that every relationship you enter into will fail. You have to give each person a chance.

          • Brian

            I agree, a person should be given a chance. But my point is in reality we don’t give each person a chance and I’m pretty sure you don’t alway do that either. We live in a society where being single is frowned upon and is heavily criticized like it’s the worst thing in the world. Just because you are single doesn’t mean that you will be alone forever. If a person is single for the rest of their life there will be “moments” of loneliness, especially when he/she see their friends coupled off and married together but it doesn’t mean that their whole life has to be defined in that manner.

    • EricP

      A few questions for you two (or anyone with SSA):

      1. I’ve heard SSA described in terms of percentage. For instance 70% SSA and 30% OSA (opposite sex). For people with some percentage of OSA, the counsel I’ve heard was to find a woman, although it will be harder than usual. Does that advice ring true to you?

      2. I struggle with why a monogamous same sex relationship is wrong. I hear people conflating addiction, lust, and SSA. I’ve never heard of someone having a sex addiction with their wife. Or lusting after her. Changing genders makes it homosexual, but I don’t see how that would make it an addiction or lust. How does 1 Cor 7:9 “Better to marry than burn with lust” apply to someone with exclusive SSA? Other Comments?

      3. Could the condemnations against homosexuality be read as a condemnation of male temple prostitutes? Why is Peter transported to talk to an eunuch (Acts 8:26-40)? Are the rules of sexual purity being changed like the rules of food purity?

      4. How does Acts 10:44-48 (Peter saw the Holy Spirit in new believers) apply? If it is clear that God has admitted people into His Kingdom, why would we keep them out of our churches?

      • Cori

        Hi Eric –

        I’m not quite sure what you’re asking with your first question, but if I’m guessing correctly, I can relate what my husband has told me. He relates that, at one time in his life, his SSA was almost all-consuming and that he was attracted to me 90% of the time. In the ensuing years as he’s been working on his core issues, his level of attraction to men has steadily fallen and reports that now it’s down around 15% of the time. As far as the advice you’ve heard, it’s malarky. Or substitute any other word in there that you’d like. There is no amount of OSA relationship that will make SSA “go away.” If there was, my husband would’ve been fully OSA within a few years of marriage, and that was most definitely NOT the case.

        If you consider SSA as a symptom of deeper woundings (which we do), my husband’s wounds were not *caused* by a woman and therefore cannot be *healed* by being in an OSA relationship. His wounds were caused by MEN – his grandfather, when he sexually abused my husband for years, his father, when he chose not to believe my husband’s story as a toddler and protect him, and his father again, when he rejected my husband and chose his second son as The Clean Son and then relegated my husband as The Dirty Son. Sounds pretty horrible because it is/was. So as my husband has been working on his woundings and relating to other OSA-men who are willing to give him the emotional support he needed and didn’t get as a child/young man/grown man, his SSA is dissipating.

        2. If you’ve never heard of someone having a sex addiction with his wife, then you’re not reading/hearing the right things. Sex addiction knows no boundaries – it can be using your wife for sex that doesn’t connect you with her (i.e., for self-gratification), it can encompass habitual masturbation and not having energy/time/sex left over for your wife, it can encompass porn, etc. As far as the same-sex monogamy, I think the best answer is found in Scripture. There is no place where God talks about blessing same-sex activity, monogamous or not. People who have left the gay lifestyle have talked about the lack of monogamy, but that’s not my place to comment, b/c I’ve not experienced that firsthand.

        3. It could entirely be that Paul was referring to temple prostitutes when he wrote about homosexuality – but why would that make same-sex activity okay for the rest of us? I’m not sure what you’re saying about Peter and the Ethiopian or why his eunuch-ness (I think I just made that word up) is an issue. Some were eunuchs from young ages, some were made that way as adults, but I can’t find any evidence in Scripture that it was in relation to having a same-sex attraction.

        4. I suspect that you’re referring to denominations and churches that make distinctions about who can be a member – I’m not in one of those, nor would I ever be. SSA doesn’t preclude someone from being a believer, any more than being a gossip, a liar, or being addicted to OSA porn precludes someone from being a believer. This feels like a straw-man argument, b/c churches that are sensitive to the Holy Spirit don’t do this, and ones that do tend to be legalistic and a bit irrelevant, anyhow.

      • JohnM

        EricP – Your questions were addressed to anyone with SSA, since that disqualifies me I’ll have to beg your pardon, but just wanted to point a couple things about your third question. Philip, not Peter, talked to the Ethiopian eunuch. He was transported not TO but AWAY after the Ethiopian officials converstion. Just a technical point. I do wonder though what you think the man’s being eunuch (which by the way in this case may not mean what you’d normally think) has to do with the subject of homosexuality.

        • EricP


          I realize now that really only the first question is for someone with SSA. Although really it could be answered by someone who’s familiar with SSA too, so that’s really an unnecessary restriction.

          You are right about about Phillip and it being away. Sorry about that.

          The eunuch is definitely a gender identity argument instead of a sexual orientation argument. I didn’t mean to conflate the two.

          • JohnM


            Thanks for the clarification. In that case:

            #2 – No, I don’t think anyone is saying SSA, addiction, and lust are synonomous, just that lust is an element of SSA, and can be an addiction. Nor is anyone denying there can be other addictions or objects of lust, but the fact that there are doesn’t make homosexual lust ok either.

            #3, First question – I know some people have claimed that but I don’t see a reason to think so. Given idolatry is condemed anyway and mentioned separately, and temple worship involved heterosexual as well as homosexual promiscuity, why would Paul single out homosexual behavior if the only issue was pagan temple worship? Second question we’ve already discussed, except I’d add that eunuchs are not people with gender identity issues. Third question – No. The no-longer-to-be-called-unclean (by the Jews) were simply gentile believers.

            #4 Acts 10:44-48 in no way does apply to the question at hand and I can’t quite see why you would think it does. For that matter, God has not indiscriminately admitted PEOPLE to His kingdom, but only those who repent and believe in the Lord Jesus Christ.

            • EricP

              For #4, that was my point. God has admitted those who have repented and believed. If people in gay relationships are showing the fruits of the spirit, what should our response be?

        • EricP


          Thank you for your gracious reply. I commend you for staying with your husband. I have a good friend with SSA. He’s married and he has shared a portion of his wife and his struggles.

          1. You guessed correctly. To clarify the advice, it definitely was not “get married and this will go away.” That is awful, awful advice. It was realize you may struggle with SSA your entire life. That doesn’t preclude getting married. You should be open with your future wife about your SSA and you should only marry her if you are genuinely attracted to her.

          4. When my church has discussed homosexuality, the pastor has said we should welcome repentant homosexuals. I’ve never heard him talk about any other sin that way. I would think we would welcome unrepentant sinners so that they could hear the gospel. Maybe not allow them to be members, but definitely welcome to our services.

          • Cori

            Thanks, EricP – but really, I don’t need commendation for staying with my soulmate. ;) I’m not perfect, either, and he’s stayed by MY side, too! ;)

            1. Yeah, I completely concur with your conclusions there. My husband was in his own private closet upon meeting me (and never once presented as gay), and so being honest with me pre-marriage wasn’t an option for him. But I’d say if one can be forthright with one’s betrothed, then that is definitely the way to go. I can’t say that if I knew, I’d have made my choices any differently – I was young, bold, and madly in love, and I could see no boundaries that love couldn’t catapult us over.

            4. I’m going to vehemently disagree with your pastor and how he’s couched the issue: that’s like saying, “You can only come to church if you’re sufficiently cleaned up enough.” Enough for whom? For our easily-offended, human sensibilities? That just encourages people to live falsely, hiding their sin and struggle. Our church (and every church we’ve been a part of for our married lives) has said, “Come to hear hope. Don’t worry about cleaning yourselves up – we’ll let the Holy Spirit do that. Just come and hear words of Life.” That’s not to say that we are gay-affirming, just that we don’t put boundaries on what people have to do in order to hear the Gospel message and experience Christ’s love. The church and leadership are on the side of Biblical morality, consistently, without being offensive or exclusive.

            One thing I think is worth mentioning, couched in a story: we attend a marriage weekend for couples impacted by homosexuality, annually. Our second year in attendance, the host stood up and said, “If you think that you’re here to learn how to have God take away your struggle with SSA, you’re going to be disappointed. There’s a good chance God will not remove all the struggle from you in your lifetime, for one reason only: because your struggle makes you dependent wholly upon Him. And that’s where He wants you – in a place of dependence. If this struggle went away, I can almost promise you that another one would spring up to cause you to depend on Him.” Initially, the anticipation (especially from the new couples) was deflated, almost audibly, like a balloon blowing out its air. That was SO not what any of us wanted to hear! But as the weekend continued, we realized that indeed, our host was correct. For all of the men and women there who just wished it would “all go away,” we had to admit that this journey was keeping us in close contact with the Father and teaching us to be better disciples than not to have this particular struggle.

            So that’s how we really try to think of this; to find ways to ‘give thanks in all circumstances,’ even when the circumstance is something we’d rather not ever have dealt with in the first place. Some days are easier than others, but we’re truckin’ along. :)

            • EricP


              Thanks for sharing the story. I’ve found that message to be true, but it is like being hit with a 2×4. For the past 10 months, I’ve experienced an alternating parade of disasters and miracles. Much more interesting than before :)

  • Rider of Rohan

    I really appreciate your dialog with Brian, above.
    I’m also someone who’s sexually attracted to men, and I’ve had a few sexual relationships and I can now tell you, with 100% certainty, that none were fulfilling or ultimately satisfying. I’m still single, and I’m still occasionally miserable!
    but for me, the answer is not, ‘well, then, get a boyfriend!’ i think the case can be legitimately made that homosexuality is objectively disordered, in that the human male body was not ordered, at creation, toward another male body and i think this is intuitive, not to mention repeated again and again as a motif in creation itself. but aside from the physical dis-ordered-ness (not a word, i know), i honestly doubt whether men can complement each other, emotionally, anyway, at least not in the same way as men and women do.
    now, as far as being ‘ultimately fulfilled’, i don’t think any human being can find ultimate fulfillment in another human being, as only God can fulfill that maybe unfulfilled longing and unrequited love are feelings that, no matter what sex they’re directed toward, they urge us to consider the possibility that their only lasting fulfillment is in the arms of God.

    …or maybe you can say, at the breast of God? I mean, consider that St. John was allowed to lay his head on Jesus’ breast, maybe a picture of some deep brokenness in St. John finding healing in the arms of his God…?

    • Brian

      Rider of Rohan,
      I agree with you, wholeheartedly. And though your single and “ccassionaly miserable” as you said there will be times in which we will feel alone because we don’t have someone to share our lives with and to be intimate with. But we have the “church” and when I say that I don’t mean a building but a body of believers to share our burdens with, to fellowship with, and to make friends with. Friendships is one way to help with the loneliness and the pain of feeling miserable as a single guy. Men can’t compliment with men as men and women do and like you that is the way God made and ordered creation. Though men and women are different when they come together in an intimate way there is a perfect balance sexually and emotionally. As a man we can be friends with other men and a great example of that is David and Jonathan in the Bible. They shared an intimate friendship that was never sexual and was within the will of God. As men we can compliment each other well in friendships and talk to other guys things that understand certain things that women don’t.

      • Anthony

        What makes you think that two guys can’t compliment each other? Look on youtube, there are gay couples everywhere in love.

        • Brian

          Look, homosexuality is wrong and the Bible says it is. Just because gay couples everywhere are in love doesn’t mean it’s right. Alot of people do things that aren’t right but just because it’s done doesn’t make it right.

          • Anthony

            The only thing the Bible condemns is gay lust. It never mentions gay love or anything like that.

            • JAS

              “The only thing the Bible condemns is gay lust. It never mentions gay love or anything like that.”

              In Romans 1, Paul speaks in passing about same-sex attraction in the part of the epistle where he seeks to establish the depravity of mankind.
              “For this reason God gave them up to dishonorable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature; 27 and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error.”

              Paul’s reason for calling this passions dishonorable was not because they were with younger men who did not consent, or with sex slaves or because they were not loving monogamous relationships , but because these passions were contrary to nature. Just as mankind has been given up to the desires of their hearts in other ways, (envy, deceit, disobedience to parents), mankind has been given up to these passions which are harmful and contrary to nature.

              These passions are not something beautiful that God has created within us for our pleasure. They ARE something for those who have repented and walk the narrow road to overcome, for the sake of the name of Jesus Christ, who is greater than our desires and who’s splender is more desirable than the greatest of our honorable natural desires. (If only my heart could see these things more clearly!)

            • Anthony

              Well that’s your interpretation, I happen to not believe in any of it. I believe there is nothing wrong with committed same sex couples. Period.

    • Anthony

      You are wrong if you say that two guys’ relationship can never match a man and a woman’s relationship. There are plenty of gay people who have been together for years and years and years and show much more commitment and chemistry together than heterosexual couples out there.

  • Jonathan

    This article is an emphatic affirmation of the fact that people are born gay. Same-sex attraction is an innate characteristic that can never be overcome. While straight evangelicals have the benefit of relieving their natural sexual desires through marriage, gay evangelicals are forced (by their own beliefs) to effectively live in celibacy. It is pretty clear from Haydn’s “testimony” that absent his evangelical conviction, he would be a happy gay man. I appreciate his honesty. But the tragedy is that his worldview has been utterly discredited by the theory of evolution, textual and historical criticism, and modern archaeology. It’s probably too late for Haydn, but given the free and easy access of information today, hopefully young gay evangelicals will have the opportunity to see and understand the evidence before their worldview has completely hardened, and escape a life of condemnation and misery. Best of luck to you Haydn.

    • Anthony

      Thank you so much. Finally, someone gets it!

    • JohnM

      If you believe the Christian worldview has been discredited then pretty much nothing in this forum is going to make sense to you or matter to you, nor are your claims going to matter much to Christians reading them.

    • JAS


      How do you prove a critical scholar wrong?
      Wait 20 years and let another critical scholar do it.

  • Rider of Rohan

    jonathan, you seal your own doom:
    assuming the “theory of evolution” is true, it makes no sense for nature to select a characteristic like homosexuality, since by definition, nature would select only the most fit to survive, and survival is impossible for someone whose been conferred with the gene to not want to have sex with the opposite sex (and so, procreate). if nature has selected for homosexuality, it’s selected something that will eventually kill itself off. it follows, then, that either homosexuality will eventually be selected out; homosexuality is not ‘innate'; or the “theory of evolution” is wrong.

    • Brian

      No one has the gay gene, what we have is the “sin” gene. We are all sinners by nature and everything about us our twisted, including our sexuality no matter if it’s heterosexual or homosexual people–in both cases both categories of people deal with lust and that is a sin trait that both have in common. The only difference is heterosexuals are in love with the opposite sex and homosexuals are not but in either case it doesn’t make heteros better than because their sin is just as bad as the other.

      • Haydn Sennitt

        That’s right- homosexuality is not innate and never was. And even if it were, we are not meant to live that way (, Titus 2:11-14).

        • Anthony

          More lies. It is just as innate as being left-handed.

          • Haydn Sennitt

            right, so where in the Bible does it talk of handedness or having black skin as being an abomination? that’s just a straw man.

            • Anthony

              Christians used to persecute those who were left handed because they viewed them as wicked.

            • Anthony

              Colossians 3:22. This was used in defending slavery.

    • Anthony

      Homosexuality is innate dude, and you know it, since you’re gay too. And yes, that is why a MINORITY of people are gay. Nature will always keep gay people at a minority and that is how it has been and always will be.

      • Ex Bisexual(Saved by Grace)

        So nature is a sentient being with n intellect and power to make decisions? Really?

    • Mark

      It is not helpful to bring in evolution or to say that evolution would not produce “homosexuality.” There are true hermaphrodites in plants, invertebrates and some vertebrates such as fish. There are sex changing fish. There are all-female species of lizards that “mate” and mating increases the number of eggs they produce. There is evolutionary theory that explains these cases. There are studies that show during early development that hormones masculinize of feminize the brain and behavior. Evolutionary theory supports these cases.

      Even in humans there are intersexes through no choice of their own.

      The old nature versus nurture debate is hardly ever helpful because biology is not that simple.
      The biological basis of “homosexuality” in very unclear and saying it is innate is at best gross overstatement.

      • Mark

        Could sin have a biological basis? Is sin sin based only on human free choice? Do all Calvinists have to convert to Arminianism when it comes to sin?

        It is a documented fact that most violent crime is perpetrated by men. It is difficult to believe that that this is solely a result of non-biological factors. The vast majority of mass murders are committed by men. Since we know a fair bit about the biological basis for men being men it is quite believable that there is a biological component to mass murder, however small that component may be. Does this mean that men are less culpable for violent crime including mass murder? No.

        What I am trying to illustrate is that the biological basis for homosexuality or SSA is not relevant to the debate. A biological disposition toward drug use or alcholism does not excuse one. Arguing that homosexuality is biological on the one hand or “a matter of choice” on the other does not advance the discussion.

    • Jonathan Axelsson

      “Survival of the fittest” is a phrase originating in evolutionary theory, as an alternative description of natural selection. The phrase is today commonly used in contexts that are incompatible with the original meaning as intended by its first two proponents: British polymath philosopher Herbert Spencer (who coined the term) and Charles Darwin.
      Evolution says that only the strongest and most well-adapted species in the food chain survive the evolution. In my research I have seen that this is an idea that has found its way within religious rhetoric since the end of the 19th century. This discussion is important and we must include all factors when it comes to questions of humanity. This topic raises strong feelings, but sometimes it is more important to ask the right questions in humility. Often it can be difficult to find answers to all questions. The whole thing comes to something reminiscent of that Pierre Teilhard de Chardin has said;

      “We are not human beings having a spiritual experience; we are spiritual beings having a human experience”
      (Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, 1881-1955)

  • Rider of Rohan

    ‘nature will always keep gay people at a minority’…

    if it isn’t eventually selected out of the human gene pool. what reason would there be to keep it in?

    “…it always will be..” unless you presume to speak for the godless, unguided hand of natural selection, i’m not sure on what basis you can make this assertion.

    • Anthony

      I don’t have the answer to why homosexuality exists. Maybe it’s nature’s way of keeping the population under reasonable control. All I know is many gay people exist and it’s time to stop promoting this lie about how this is something to be overcome.

    • EricP

      There has been some interesting research in birth order and homosexuality. Short version is the more older brothers you have the more likely you are to have SSA. The evolutionary explanation is that at a certain point helping mom raise the existing boys provides more of a benefit than one more boy.

  • Pingback: Saturday Evening Post | Growing in Grace()

  • Rider of Rohan

    “…stop promoting this lie…”

    seems that at this point, we’d just be table-pounding over whose view of homosexuality is right and whose is wrong! i mean, i’m not even sure where you stand on the Christian faith. By the way, are you a Christian? agnostic? atheist? agnostic but curious?!

    Obviously, if you reject the Christian faith, you reject its sexual ethic as well. surely you don’t accept it’s ethic. So our dispute then really goes beyond deciding what to do with one’s body. you’re probably not going to convince people on a Christian forum to abandon their views on sexual ethics without abandoning their belief in Christ, just as no one will convince you to accept it without abandoning whatever your basis is for accepting the rightness of homosexuality.

    incidentally, why do you think there’s “nothing wrong” with homosexuality? what is your basis for deciding what is and what isn’t “right”?

    • Anthony

      My religion is currently no religion. I choose to stay neutral about the topic.

      • JohnM

        Well I’m glad we cleared that up. By the way, choosing to stay neutral about religion is not being neutral in reference to religion. Kind of a Catch-22. You’ve got to decide something.

        • Anthony

          Why should I decide? I don’t even know what to believe anymore. How should I know which religion is the “correct” one?

          • Haydn Sennitt

            Anthony, you sound quite confused, not agnostic. Hope you find the hope of Christ.

          • JohnM


            “I don’t even know what to believe anymore.” is one thing, and I realize sometimes it is just a matter-of-fact honest statement. What I’m trying to get you to see is that simply dismissing religion wholesale is itself a kind of decision, and not being neutral. Something has to be the truth. Christians believe ultimately it is not someTHING but someone. Jesus said “I am the way the truth and the life”, and I believe Him on that. Without starting at that point none of the rest ultimately matters.

  • laura

    I hope that someone who reads this post will find some hope within it.

    It isn’t well known, but sexuality is on a continuum, like many other things in nature. On one end is exclusive heterosexual, on the other is exclusive homosexual. And in the middle is bisexuality. (There’s other stuff, but we’ll keep it simple for this purpose). Most people are not exclusive on either side. This is a key point. Many heterosexuals are not exclusively heterosexual. They too have homosexual desires.

    Those who are very close to heterosexuality have a relatively easy life. They only have a small amount of SSA (as you term it). It’s easy to go on with life and not think homosexual thoughts. It’s easy to even fool themselves that they do not have them, say something to themselves like: “I just wish I had a body like that.” without acknowledging that there is an attraction there.

    There is so much more that I could say on the subject, but people never read the super lengthy posts, so I’ll be brief with my point: Homosexuality is completely natural, and there are differing levels of it throughout the human race. And since you were born homosexual (or on the continuum somewhere), I see no reason why you should live your life without sexual satisfaction.

    Heterosexuals who expect you to live any differently need to think about what life would be like for them if they were forced to live a life without sexual satisfaction with the gender of their desire. And not only that, but to be called (and call themselves) a sinner for even the thought of it.

    • Mark

      People are born with violent tendancies along a continuum. For example the vast majority of mass murders are committed by men. By your reasoning mass murder is okay if murderers get satisfaction out of it. Non-violent women should just get over violent men and not force them to live a dissatisfied life.

      • laura

        No Mark, my reasoning does not lead logically to mass murder being OK. It does not logically lead to criminal activities and acts of violence being OK. These are completely different issues.

        There is right and wrong. Murder and other violent acts are wrong, and they are criminal. Homosexuality is not wrong. It is not evil.

        • Mark

          Romans 1:24 speaking of ungodly fallen mankind. “For this reason God gave them up to dishonorable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature; and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameles acts with men and recieving in themeselves the due penalty for their error.”

          I Corinthians 6:9. “Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, not men who practice homosexuality, no theives, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherith the kingdom of God.”

          • Anthony

            @ Romans Refers to gay lust, not committed same sex couples.

            @Corinthians: homosexuality wasn’t a word until the 19th century. the phrase in other texts is “abusers of themselves with mankind” not exactly modern day homosexuality.

            • JohnM

              Now Anthony, unless you believe the Bible to be divinely inspired and authoritative what do you care about the meaning anyway? If you don’t accept the veracity of Christian scripture there is no point in discussing it with you.

              I point this out for the benefit of any Christians who might otherwise be mislead:

              Note the wording (with CAPS for emphasis) – “For their women exchanged NATURAL relations for those that are CONTRARY TO NATURE” and “the men likewise gave up NATURAL RELATIONS with women”. Other translations use “function” or “use” in place of relations, with the same meaning, but all contrast natural with unatural. No, there is no mistaking the meaning, nothing here at all to support “committed same sex couples”, and no basis for supposing the meaning is limited to “gay lust”.

              When the specific word “homosexuality” may have first came into use is irrelavant. Does anyone suppose the 17th century Christians responsible for the King James translation (where “abusers of themselves with mankind” is the phrase used) were unfamiliar with what we call homosexuality, or were well disposed toward it? Better look again at history. Whichever English word/phrase is used it is translated from the Greek arsenkoites (last e is a long e) meaning homosexuals. And I doubt anyone seriously questions that now – some are just grasping at straws.

            • Anthony

              Arsenkoites does not have an actual translation to mean “gay.” Christians made that up to enshrine their prejudices.

            • Anthony

              I never “gave up” relations with women. I was just never drawn to them . There’s a difference, bud.

          • Anthony

            Oh and btw 1 Timothy 2:12. Colossians 3:22. Would you like to justify these in modern society as well? This is why I cannot take the bible seriously.

            • JohnM

              “This is why I cannot take the bible seriously.” Then why bother talking about it if it’s not to be taken seriously? Anthony, I think you DO take the bible seriously to some degree or else you wouldn’t be so up in arms over it, I also think you intuitively know at some level that something is wrong about homosexuality and you are fighting against your own intuition. Your own anger and frustration testifies to your awareness. Think about it.

            • Anthony

              Because you guys continue to annoy people like me day in and day about how the bible is “god’s word”, when I just don’t believe that’s the case.

            • Ex Bisexual(Saved by Grace)

              If you dont believe it then what does it matter how we interpret it. If the book has no basis in reality then our interpretation of it does need to be validated.

          • EricP


            Check out this page and the links.

            It does a pretty good job presenting the gay christian biblical position.

            • Mark

              All I did was post two direct quotes from the ESV without comment. I did not make any claims or arguments of any sort. Oddly enough I did not see where the site addressed these versus. I guess one would have to take it up with the translaters or perhaps the apostle Paul himself.

            • EricP


              I guess the point is with the particular translation. As I may have mentioned upstream, until about a year ago I was against female preachers because of similar Pauline quotes. I now think they are culturally specific, It makes me question which other Pauline rules I’ve been enforcing on others that I shouldn’t have been.

              The more specific locations are here:

            • Mark

              Why on earth are they arguing against paraphrased Bibles rather than scholoarly translations? That’s a rhetorical question.

              I think before one buys into biblical arguments one better understand what theological starting points and hermeneutical (interpretation) principles are being employed.

              People have believed and done lots of things in the name of God and used the Bible to do so.

    • Haydn Sennitt

      Thanks, Laura. Many people do find hope in this as truth sets people free and being vulnerable with them gives them hope that they can bring anything to God.

      • laura

        Thanks for responding to my comment Hayden. Though I am a heterosexual (with very small amounts of SSA), this issue has really touched my heart over the years. Especially the suicide of Tyler Clementi. His story just hurt my heart.

        I do believe that truth sets people free. However, I no longer believe that ultimate truth is found in the Bible, and I am no longer a Christian. This article was posted on the facebook page of a pastor in my area, and I came here to read it. I know that most people who read it are Christians who struggle with SSA. And this touches my heart as well.

        I used to view things very similar to the way you have stated things in this article. But now, I just feel bad that people suffer so terribly with the guilt of being who they are. When there really is no reason for it.

        I wish much peace, joy, and love to you and everyone else here.

        • Hannah


          I really appreciate your heart and your desire for peace, joy and love. And while I recognize that you do not necessarily believe the Bible or Christianity, I respect your freedom to choose not to. But I would offer one additional thought for you to consider when you see people “suffering so terribly with the guilt of being who they are.”

          You must remember that while the teaching of the Bible is not your paradigm, it is for many like Hadyn. It is as much a part of “who they are” as their SSA. In reconciling their identity, they simply CANNOT divorce their belief system from their sexual experience. They are a product of both and they have to choose which one leads and which one follows. In Haydn’s case, he has chosen to find security and peace in His relationship with Christ and let his sexuality be subject to that.

          As much as you hurt for people that you think are needlessly feeling guilt, you must also respect them enough to allow them to shape their own identity as they see fit given their own belief systems. Yes, it may make it painful and difficult, but I imagine that for those like Haydn, giving up another essential part of himself–his identity as a believer in Christ and the Scripture–would be more than painful. It would be impossible.

          • laura

            Hannah, I gave up that “essential part” of myself over a year ago. Was it painful? Yes, very much so. Was it impossible? No.

            I was very much a believer for over 39 years. Giving up the beliefs that I held dear was very difficult. But many have gone before me. And I owe a debt to those who had done so much to challenge my faith and cause me to embrace the doubts that were there, but stuffed into the remotest corner of my mind.

            If my comments resonate with someone reading this, then I’m glad to have spent some moments commenting on this article.

            • Hannah

              And ultimately you had to make that choice–but that doesn’t necessarily mean that your experience, what brought resolution to your doubts, is what will bring resolution to those in Haydn’s position.

              I applaud your courage to investigate and reveal the questions that you pushed back for so long, but just because you had them, doesn’t mean that Christians wrestling with their SSA have the same ones. At some point, we owe each other the the right of self-determination–what may have been possible for you, simply isn’t for them.

            • EricP


              My advice would be to focus on the major topics. Homosexuality is mentioned in a few verses. While I don’t advocate a buffet style of the Bible, I think it’s possible (and maybe even commendable) to disagree with the majority interpretation on a couple of items.

              I just looked through my denomination statement of faith and message and found I disagreed with about 6 items. I consider them minor items about disputable things. I’m not leaving my church (and definitely not my faith) over these. I’ll work from the inside to try to change the majority’s opinion.

            • laura


              ” but just because you had them, doesn’t mean that Christians wrestling with their SSA have the same ones.”

              I’m sure there are plenty of people on this board struggling with the same questions that I had, and if they do, I would like to tell them that they are not alone. And encourage them to take that hard look at their faith, and consider that they may be wrong, and that a better life could be on the other side for them.


              “My advice would be to focus on the major topics.”

              I did. I studied thoroughly the claim that hell is forever and found it to be largely unsupported in the Bible. I also found the trinity/deity of Christ doctrine to be largely unsupported in the Bible as well. I also found my favorite Christian apologists to be biased individuals who have a propensity toward deceit. In the end, there was nothing to hold on to anymore. No real evidence for God, and therefore no real reason for me to continue in belief.

              There are others like me out there. I regret that it took me so long to come out of the faith, but glad that I did.

  • Kevin Morgan

    I appreciate your willingness to share your story with us, Haydn. A lot of men wouldn’t even consider admitting to having unwanted same-sex attraction, but you share your story with people, and by the grace of God, you help people to find liberty and freedom in their true identity as sinners who are reconciled to God through Jesus. I get a strong feeling from reading this article and looking at the Liberty Christian Ministries website that the Holy Spirit is at work through you and your testimony, and the ministry.

    Keep Christ as your center and the cross as your focus. Praying for you.

    -Kevin Morgan

  • AndrewR of Sydney

    Some deep contradictions in the strange world we live in:

    1) conservatives pride themselves as being pro-individual, pro-choice, pro free-market. Except the individual’s choice of abortion.

    2) liberals pride themselves on their ability to defend the weak, marginalized, the ostracized, the down-trodden. Except the most helpless person of all: an unborn child.

    3) it is easier in my country (Australia) to have an abortion than it is to cut down a tree?

    4) for years a vocal group of highly educated people have attacked the institution of marriage (eg: it’s just a piece of paper; it’s a relic of religious control; it’s a way the Church controlled society; I don’t need a church to tell me what to do). Except now, this irrelevant institution has become the key for homosexual happiness?

    People who for years have been “anti-marriage” are now “pro-gay marriage”.

    I propose the following: many people are “anti-institution” (all types). These people are using the “gay marriage” advocacy campaign to undermine a much hated institution. I doubt their motives are driven by love and compassion toward homosexuals in as much as their motives are driven by hatred of God and the Church.

    I believe the gay-marriage campaign is a necessary background to any discussion of SSA. 

    A key argument of this campaign is that being gay is entirely genetic, it’s nature not nurture, it’s the equivalent of being left handed! Science has settled this you idiotic, irrational, uneducated “faith-heads”.



  • AndrewR of Sydney

    If SSA and homosexuality are genetic, how so? What type of inheritance is it? Is it a simple Mendelian trait (eg: one gene, one disease). Is it a complex trait (eg: many genes, many gene-gene interactions, many gene-environment interactions). 

    Many years ago scientists found the “gay-gene” in drosophila flies. It turned out the males were pursuing other males because of a mutation in a receptor. The mutation caused the males to identify males as female.

    Homosexuality is certainly not a mendelian trait eg: my father had it, my grandfather, my great grand-father etc. I am not aware of any twin studies which have calculated the inheritance of homosexuality. No linkage studies to identify genes. No association studies. These are all basic research methods in genetics/genomics which are required to assert that science proves homosexuality is genetic. Like left handedness. If anyone is aware of such studies please identify them.

    I’m not going to give my opinion on SSA. I just wanted to make a few observations based on a few comments.

    Thank you to those who responded to non-Christian posts with kindness and compassion. And thank you Haydn for this article.

    An interesting article over at the NY Times on this topic:

    An analogy might read: second year engineering student writes an article on the constitution challenging the Supreme’s Courts interpretation of the First Ammendment. Gets published in the NY Times!

    No, it’s a second year philosophy student from Harvard who is becoming famous for the observation that the Bible doesn’t specifically condemn loving, monogamous, faithful gay relationships. 

    He was then “forced” out of his Church, even though later in the article he and his family chose to leave because they didn’t get approval/blessing for his SSA.

    Unfortunately the author and his advocates don’t seem to realize the Bible has quite a lot to say about marriage…

  • Pingback: Links I Like | Blogging Theologically()

  • Laura Blalock

    Twin studies.

    It’s most likely a combination of genetics and womb environment.

    The article also discusses other predictors of homosexuality, such as birth order. There’s more info out there – Wikipedia simply offers a summary.

  • AndrewR of Sydney

    Oops: “inheritance of homosexuality” should be “heritability”!

  • AndrewR of Sydney

    Some excerpts from the Wikipedia link:

    “No simple, single cause for sexual orientation has been conclusively demonstrated. Various studies point to different, even conflicting positions, such as a combination of genetic, hormonal, and environmental influences,[1] with biological factors involving a complex interplay of genetic factors and the early uterine environment,[2] or no genetic influence.[3]

    Regarding twin studies:

    Bearman and Bruckman (2002) criticized early studies of concentrating on small, select samples[3] and non-representative selection of their subjects.[7] They studied 289 pairs of identical twins (monozygotic or from one fertilized egg) and 495 pairs of fraternal twins (dizygotic or from two fertilized eggs) and found concordance rates for same-sex attraction of only 7.7% for male identical twins and 5.3% for females, a pattern which they say “does not suggest genetic influence independent of social context.”[3]

    In a large Swedish study of twins:

    Overall, the environment shared by twins (including familial and societal attitudes) explained 0–17% of the choice of sexual partner, genetic factors 18–39% and the unique environment 61–66%. 

    Regarding twin-studies:

    “and Nonetheless, it is possible to conclude that, given the difference in sexuality in so many sets of identical twins, sexual orientation cannot be purely caused by genetics.[9]

    Regarding linkage studies, a few studies thought they had found families where homosexuality was linked to a set of markers in a region of a chromosome but then:

    “A recent study of 894 heterosexual and 694 homosexual men found no evidence of sex linkage.[16]”

    The difficulty with homosexuality quantitative genetic studies (and biological studies) are the 4 c’s. Is there a relationship? Is it causal? Is it a correlation? Is it a consequence? Are there confounding variables?

    Bedtime in Sydney…

    • EricP

      Thanks for the data AndrewR. Good job on pointing out the contradictions on both sides. I think you answered very well why conservatives are afraid of gay marriage.

      One question I’ve pondered over. If it’s not genetic, what if it’s still permanent? That is at sometime between birth and 13*, the sex target gender gets permanently set. If so, how would that effect the discussion?

      Based on data of child abuse leading to SSA, I would think this question has some merit. (or is abuse based SSA completely different?)

      *Picking 13 as a somewhat arbitrary number. The question changes slightly if it’s much lower (2-5) or much higher (20-30).

  • Mark

    Human sex determination is complex and starts at fertilization of the egg with either an X (female) or Y (male) chromosome which begins a sequence of events. If the fetus has a Y chromosome testes will normally develop around the beginning of the first trimester. If the Y is absent the undifferentiated gonad will normally become an ovary. The developing ovary and testis secrete hormones that influence female- and male-typical physical traits and likely also behavior. There are a variety of things that can go wrong. Genetic sex does not always match physical sex. Clearly this is a long process that continues through puberty in humans. Asking when sex is fixed is something like asking when a developing embryo becomes human.

    • EricP

      But the question is does sexual orientation at some time become fixed? Does that make it equivalent to “born that way”? And does “born that way” even matter? Does it change anyone’s argument.

      • Mark

        There may be gender differences in the “plasticity” of SSA.

        Does “born that way matter”? I argued above that debating the biological basis of SSA only clouds the discussion. There is probably a biological basis to all of our behaviors, but showing there’s a biological basis does not negate sin or eliminate human responsibility although we have been claiming this ever since Adam tried to blame the fall on God; … “the woman YOU gave me.” Take an example that most people would agree is “wrong”; mass murder. The vast vast majority of mass murders are committed by men, not women. It is very easy to believe this difference has some biological basis related to being male. Probably very few people would argue that being male makes mass murderers any less responsible. From a biblical perspective, murder is murder, sin and evil. “Can the pot say to the potter you made me this way”? In the end I do not think that argument will stand. Will unbelievers be able to blame God that it was His fault because he created them dead in their sins?

  • Cori

    I don’t think that’s the case, EricP, just b/c God’s activity in our lives isn’t age-based. He changed Moses from a hired-hand to His mouthpiece for the Israelites at the age of 80, and that’s just one example of someone older being used.

    I’m sure the argument would arise that going from sheep-tender to prophetic voice is different than shedding an SSA, but I’m not sure the parallels *don’t* apply. I think the key to sexual orientation changing is the DESIRE to change – moving an anchored ship is impossible, and if one is going to make any life change, one cannot be anchored in current life status/situation.

    In my husband’s case, he began working on his move away from his SSA when he was 44 yrs old – hardly old, but also not exactly young, either. He had struggled since he could remember and honestly would’ve said he was “born that way,” just b/c he couldn’t remember anything else. He didn’t remember choosing his attraction (and he didn’t – let’s be *really* clear about that), but I don’t remember choosing my attraction to men (and I didn’t – again, being super clear). He also didn’t remember the years of abuse until he was well in to his healing journey – and he’s still getting snippets of memories that pop through from time-to-time and his healing journey continues.

    As to your question about whether “born that way” even matters – for us, it doesn’t. If we say it does, then we risk nullifying the work of Christ’s cross, b/c we’re saying that “this matter is too hard for God to accomplish,” and Scripture is really clear about His power. We’re also saying (if we acquiesce to the “born that way” argument) that this matter is *HARDER* than *RAISING JESUS FROM THE DEAD* and in our theology, that’s simply heresy. Raising Christ from the dead is the penultimate – providing a way for our salvation. So a matter of sexual orientation being “harder” or “worse” than providing salvation through conquering death? Nope. Not in our world.

    • EricP


      Thanks for your answer. I think there is healing even if SSA remains. Understanding the root, having it diminish are both examples of healing.

      That’s awful that he was abused and it’s bad that he could not remember it for so long (was the forgetting in anyway good? a defense mechanism to forget the trauma)

      I’m not sure I agree with your born that way argument. Obviously, God can do anything He wants at any time. When He doesn’t, what should we do? It’s not a matter of it being too hard. He could stop all sin immediately, but there are reasons He doesn’t. I do like that you state the born that way argument doesn’t matter. That’s a very useful shortcut in this debate.

      • Cori

        >I think there is healing even if SSA remains. Understanding the root, having it diminish are both examples of healing.<

        Oh, absolutely. Thanks for the clarification, b/c I'd never want to convey that healing only looks like one thing. That's just how it happens to look in our lives. :)

        Yes, the abuse was long-standing and he wasn't protected the way parents *should* protect their children, but our therapist says my husband has a "super brain" – one that protected him from the harsh realities and the unsafe conditions and still allowed him to learn and be a functioning human being. So in that sense, the forgetting was good – very good. It began to come to his memory at a time when he was stronger, more grounded in God, and able to deal with it without collapsing in a heap. We really see it as a divine appointment for him – in order to grow further, he had to come to grips with the reality of his past, and God had worked me through some junk in my past so that I could be a better support for him. I still marvel at how our bodies were created – the cellular memory (storage capacity) is huge – something like 6GB of information can be stored in each *cell* (multiplied by the however many trillions of cells in our bodies) and if the information is hard or damaging, the body will hang on to the information in silence until we're able to deal with it in a safe and healthy manner. Infinite creativity and grace is baked in to our very cellular makeup! In my husband's case, his SSA was the only manifestation (as an adult) of his past, although we both recognize that not everyone shares the same story and links to SSA.

        You're entirely right about God being able to stop sin at any point – but if He did, then Jesus' death and resurrection would be nullified. I can't pretend to know the whys and hows of everything God does, so I've got no answers beyond what we've learned as we walk this path.

        • EricP

          It’s amazing how God’s timing works.

      • laura

        Of course it matters if a person was born that way. If you are person who was born heterosexual, then you escaped this issue. But if you were born homosexual, it’s hugely relevant to your life.

        To be told that you will never be able to love the gender of your desire is a cruelness that I cannot even fathom. It was hard enough to be celibate until I married at the age of 25. To be told that I would have to spend my entire life without the sexual satisfaction I desire is incomprehensible.

        It’s easy to be heterosexual and just pronounce judgement on the whole thing. But you don’t have to live with not only the frustration of SSA, but the idea that the bible calls how you feel an ‘abomination’ and decries it so vehemently.

  • Micah Roush

    Smoke in the wind. Praise God Haydn Sennit has the Lord Jesus as his savior. He has the right to be called a child of God, an heir in Christ and a citizen of heaven forever. He has the promise that he has been uniquely called in Christ and will persevere until he is raised from the dead to live HOLY with God. He has the unique standing of being called to a table set with Christ’s  body and blood, the forgiveness of his sin just like any other. He is my brother and I rejoice with him in Christ. Christ came for the broken, the outcast, and prisoners of this wretched world. Everything else is smoke and mirrors, pharisaical rhetoric. It is sad to me that the church is more often worried about rights, labels, divisions and values of sins rather than using the gifts it has been given to edify our broken body. I remain hopeful, privileged and ever grateful to my precious Lord. Sadly I remain unsurprised by men.

  • Serena

    I don’t understand this at all. If you’re attracted to the same sex as yourself, why did you get married to a woman? That has to be hard on everyone in your family. Just accept who you are. You are gay. It’s nothing to be ashamed no matter what all these judgmental, ridiculous people on here say. People love differently. It is not a choice, no matter what you say. No man or woman would choose to be judged and told they are disgusting and going to hell every day of their life.

    It’s not something that can be “healed.” Let’s bring SCIENCE and LOGIC into this. It is scientifically proven that if a person tries to “cure” or “heal” their homosexuality, it can be seriously damaging. Mentally, emotionally, and physically. And homosexuality is seen in over 450 species. It’s natural. Nothing to be called disgusting or wrong. It’s how they were born and how they will always be. So let them be.

    If YOU yourself believe it’s wrong, then okay, that’s good for you. But don’t press that opinion on anyone else. That’s like your religion saying it’s wrong to watch cartoons on Sunday. So, you’re not going to watch cartoons on Sunday right? But what your pattern shows is that you would go around petitioning and voting to make it so NO channel on television can show cartoons on Sunday and so no one else can see it either.

    Don’t force your beliefs on other people and accept who you are. All I’m saying.

    • Collin Hansen

      Don’t you think, Serena, that you should refrain from forcing your beliefs on Haydn and accepting him as he is?

      • Serena

        I’m not forcing my beliefs, I’m just stating facts and I am accepting who he really is.

        • Collin Hansen

          Isn’t it possible he thinks he’s doing the same thing?

  • Haydn Sennitt

    ‘Born gay’ theories are little more than that- they remail theories. But even if people ARE born gay the point is immaterial: we are called to surrender our lives to God no matter what our DNA and circumstances dictate. Even if sin is biological, like the generational sin that the 10 commandmends talks of, we are still called to surrender sinful, carnal desire to God (2 Cor. 10:4-5). Would we say to a baby born to an alcoholic mother or an Indian child born into poverty that they are meant to live as they are born simply because they were ‘designed’ that way? Why then would we commend homosexuality if people think they must have been born gay?

    Tellingly, many people say they are born gay because they have no other way to account for it. Many say, “I must have been born this way because I was like this as long as I can remember”. However, that is a memory matter not a biological one. However, insisting on ‘born gay’ has little integrity because it’s choosing-by-default. Empirical studies- even ones by gay affirming researchers- have found no gay genes or anything within coo-ee of supporting a born gay thesis. Even the researcher Simon Le Vay who claimed to have found the ‘gay brain’ discounted this. Just today on the Liberty website I posted a paper on this by an Australian physicial. Have a read –

    • Serena

      But see, that’s the thing. When they are born that way, then you can’t ask them to change it or ignore it. That’s just wrong. It’s just the way they love, and sorry if it’s different, but it’s just the way it is. I’m not Christian, so I can’t really understand any of that. And a child born into poverty is different. That’s just money not a part of who they are. They can go to school and college and get a job and change that. Homosexuality is not like that.

      • Haydn Sennitt

        But, see that doesn’t add up. If a child is born to an alcoholic mother it will naturally crave alcohol. So they are called to live beyond their DNA. How else would society function with a healthy justice system if every action could be justified with a ‘born that way’ defence?

        My question is, Why isn’t homosexuality like that? If a straight person becomes gay, we might say he’s found his real self- he was gay the whole time! But for a person with SSA to live beyond and overcome it we condemn him and call him a liar. Makes no sense.

        • Serena

          But it’s still different. Alcoholism is harmful. It’s bad, it causes problems. Homosexuality doesn’t. It’s just love. One person loving another person. So it’s nothing that needs to be defended because it’s nothing wrong. The only reason people feel the need to use the born that way ‘defense’ is because people are constantly attacking them and who they are.

          And a straight person rarely becomes gay by choice. It just doesn’t happen that often. The same with a gay person becoming straight. It just rarely happens. I wouldn’t call someone a liar for saying so, per say, but it’s just not that likely to happen. If it was I’d see it happening way more often than it does.

          I have many gay friends who always tell me they wish they weren’t gay and they wish they could change it because of the torment they get for it. I had a friend who killed himself for it. My friend knew a boy who was in seventh grade, only seventh grade, who killed himself because everyone told him who he was was a sin.

          I just don’t like to see it be talked about in this fashion.

          • Haydn Sennitt

            Sorry, you could not b more mislead about homosexality! If ever there was a misleading adjective to describe that community it’s ‘gay’. I know this because I once lived the gay life and experienced first-hand its destructiveness. I recently posted a blog quoting evidence cataloguing the health risks involved in living like that ( The word ‘love’ gets thrown around loosely but it is so rare to find it tht in many studies (even those written by gay-affirming researchers), those who are happilly in ‘monogamous’ long-term gay relationships are statistically insignificant. A study by Jones and Yarhouse (Ex-Gay?) discovered that gay people can change, and that those most likely to change orientation are those who identify as exclusively gay in their sexual attractions. Shalom.

          • EricP


            I’m sorry for your friend. I know too many people in the LBGT community who have attempted suicide. When I don’t hear from a friend for a while, that’s the first thought that crosses my mind.

            A while back I read a great article about how people with SSA don’t have guilt as much as they are guilt. They realize early on that they are different than other kids. And different is wrong. But there’s nothing that their parents did or their teachers did to make them wrong. And it takes a lot of a 7 year old to blame God. So there’s no one left to blame but themselves. I don’t think people without SSA realize how fragile the person’s self image is.

            I don’t think Christians needs to do anything on making people w/ SSA feel guilty. That’s done. We need to show that there is hope.

  • Hannah

    This back and forth reminds me yet again that one reason Christians struggling through SSA are perhaps the most vulnerable among us is simply because they are rarely fully accepted by either group. The church holds them at arm’s length and the world tells them that they are unintelligent, repressed people. Haydn and others like him are truly choosing the narrow way and will gain a unique, intimate relationship with Christ Himself simply because they walk such an isolated path.

    • Haydn Sennitt

      Amen, Hannah! Few people get it, so thanks for your kind words. God is love but, alas, love is not God. And love is only valid as long as its OBJECT is valid.

    • Micah Roush

      Well said. We are all called to be kind and courageous. Some receive grace to be of more courage than others. Perhaps this suffering may be looked upon as a gift of dependence in Christ. If nothing else I am ever in His grace and wholly dependent on His kind love. Serena this love is eternal and my very hope moment by moment. Anything else makes me less than what I was born to be. Homosexuality lessens me by defining me as a person bound by my creator to be a lie of creation. My God cannot lie it is not in his nature. He calls me his own and therefore I am created in his image. For that I am grateful. Serena that kind love and concern you have comes from the same creator.

      • Haydn Sennitt

        Well, said Micah. You understand the gospel in this context very well!

  • Haydn Sennitt

    Interesting article that came out today:

    British actor Rupert Everett has stunned the gay community by telling a UK newspaper that he “can’t think of anything worse” than having two gay parents. Everett told the Sunday Times Magazine that although his mother Sara had met his boyfriend, she “still wishes I had a wife and kids. She thinks children need a father and a mother and I agree with her,” he said, according to the UK’s Telegraph newspaper. AMEN!

    Read more:

  • 2EZ

    Good article, thanks for taking the time to write it. Although we are surrounded by a culture of death it seems from the ashes can spring life. The more mainstream same-sex relationships become, the more accepted they are as an alternative life style, and the more natural it becomes to talk about. For so long people with this struggle have hidden in shame or fear only to wrestle with it on their own, failing time and again. Instead of treating them like icky people, we are slowly coming to love and support those who struggle with same-sex attraction as brothers and sisters in Christ.

    p.s. I never comment on these things because the comments section is so hard to take seriously as they seem nothing more than an extension of Poe’s Law.

  • Jonathan Axelsson

    It is a very moving portrayal that you give. I have met many people who have been, and still are in your situation. You say that your SSA (homosexuality) has brought you closer to G-d, and that is good, but you see difficulties here. Try to see it in a different way. Man is not born in sin, so that G-d have to release the “sinner.” There is no sin to forgive. When G-d created everything, he saw that it was Good. Not only that, it was VERY GOOD!

    We are all inclined to do good or evil things. It is a conscious choice that we make. No one is born a sinner, or racist, or murderers, or atheists. It is a learned behavior. Our sexuality, however, is just like other traits that we have, more or less innate, that make us to whom we are, unique and for ever loved by our Creator. This can apply to things such as eye colour, hair colour, genetic characteristics which we can and do not have to change, that will say, if they are not immediately life-threatening or disabling. The most important thing is to embrace life and see the opportunities that can come out of it.

    • Brian

      We ARE born sinners and the problem is more deep than “learned behavior”. There are kids who are born in great, well-to-do families and they grow up and do the most heinous thing such as murder. What happened in that situation? Where did they learn that behavior to kill? Someone got beside them and taught them how to kill?? Now that would be “learned behavior”. No, the problem is far worse and that is our hearts. The person who is a murderer has made the conscious decisions to kill. Even if that person had a horrible childhood no one made that person kill, they did it on their own will. When God made the world it was good, VERY GOOD but something happened and that is why we have sinners, racists, murders and atheists alike. You can go to a monastery and go live as a monk, away from the outside world and you will still have have sinful thoughts/feelings. It’s in the heart where sin resides and our actions are just what laid dormant in our hearts all along.

      • Jonathan Axelsson

        Hi, Brian. I am fully convinced that sin is an external impact, an impact from the surroundings that gets a person to act in a particular way. This does not take away our own personal responsibility to do good and avoid evil. These questions raise strong feelings, I know. Since I embraced the Jewish faith (I’m former Pentecostal) I have come to study the Jewish scriptures/Tanach in Hebrew language, and I have found much to support the idea that G-d did not punish the world for it sins, and that this anger of G-d was not forever. The creation was perfect, but man’s desire to go against the will of G-d, when the man began to go his own way, with a flood He wiped out all life, only Noah and his family survived. The sin of eating a forbidden fruit does not give us the full answer.

        Let me give you an example; the story about the angels who were depraved and sinful and who engaged in sexual contacts with humans as understood in the story of Sodom in Genesis 19:1-5, 2 Peter 2:6 and Judah 1:7. If we go back to the episode in Genesis 6:1-2 we see that it is a transition between the deluge (mentioned in previous chapters) on to the degeneration of the human race, which had occurred. On the other hand, the verses are preparing the first verses of the story of Noah and the flood that follows, it was because of this decay that the flood came.

        “And it came to pass, when men began to multiply on the face of the earth, and daughters were born unto them,
        that the sons of God saw the daughters of men that they were fair; and they took them wives, whomsoever they chose.” (Genesis 6:1-2, Jewish/English Bible, JPS 1917)

        Unfortunately, the meaning in these verses are not obvious. The Bible passage says that when men began to increase in number on the earth and daughters were born to them, the sons of G-d (Hebr. “beni ha-elohim”) saw that the daughters of men were beautiful, and they took them wives as they wished. This statement is actually confusing because the punishment can refer to either of two things; the “sons of G-d” (which were descendants of Set), would be marrying with unbelievers and unfaithful women. It can also refer to angels, as we see in Job 1:6, 2:1 and 38:7.

        The doctrine that we are born in sin can not be true here. It contradicts the Bible passages concerning the nature of sin and the definition of sin. We see this in the teaching of G-d’s prophet Ezekiel, for example. The Spirit inspired Ezekiel to teach, “The person who sins will die. The son will not bear the punishment for the father’s iniquity, nor will the father bear the punishment for the son’s iniquity; the righteousness of the righteous will be upon himself, and the wickedness of the wicked will be upon himself.” (Ezekiel 18:20). The creeds of men say the son does bear the punishment for the father’s iniquity, but the word of G-d says he does not. The choice is ours as to which to believe.

        I feel confident and safe to say that it is my belief that we are all spiritual beings making physical experiences in this life, where we gather so much knowledge and experiences as possible. And we also chose our destiny. You see, there seems to have been certain dimensions in religiosity that is lost today, gone through ages of Bible translations and interpretations but hopefully we can find them again. The meaning with everything in life is not to fight, struggle or shout with the loudest voice, but to be silent, awaiting to be able to listen inwardly to G-d and to make us grow and develop to obtaining the completeness that HaShem has created us to. That is our starting point and final point in life and all the way into eternity. No one is excluded. Shalom on Rosh Hashanah.

  • John G Christensen

    Woe to anyone who says to a woman, “With what are you in labor?” (Isa. 45:10) Before God formed you in the womb He knew you, and before you were born He set you apart. (Jer. 1:5) Eternal and unchangeable identities are breathed into unique, unclonable individual persons long before we are born. No two of us are ever the same person. So “born that way” just barely begins to do justice for each one of us, including gays uniquely so by God’s will. Mankind with common sense and God Himself, together they laugh at the idea of “ex-gay”. Gays are gays eternally.

    • Brian


      Do you struggle with SSA by any chance?

      • EricP


        Follow John’s link.

        I don’t like to answer for others, but it seems pretty obvious that:
        1. John is gay.
        2. John is no longer struggling with it.

        I found his 2 articles interesting and thought provoking.

  • EricP

    Haydn (or anyone else),

    Could you comment on how Paul’s verses on homosexuality are different from his verses about female preachers? 1 Tim 1:10 vs 1 Tim 2:12 for instance. Same book, one chapter apart. If I’ve read your comments above correctly, you’ve been helped by a female pastor.

    I’m struggling with what differentiates the one from the other.

    Romans 14, 1 Cor 8:9 talk about a believer’s liberty and doing what is best for the fellow believer’s and also to not judge other believer’s choices. It’s about food, but why not homosexuality. Specifically monogamous homosexuality (everything I’ve read says that this kind doesn’t except among men, but it is somewhat common in women).

    1 Cor 7 talks about satisfying sexual urges by marriage. Obviously the ideal marriage for a person with SSA is to opposite gender. In the less than ideal case, is there an argument for gay marriage? Do you think everyone with SSA has some OSA?

    I read your article about the incredible increase in STI for MSM. One problem is anal sex. I think the bigger problem is promiscuity. That ties back to the monogamy question.

    Your ministry refers people to counseling. Have you gotten any statistics back on outcome? Assuming a counselor has seen enough people that they can aggregrate statistics.

    Thanks for taking the time to answer these questions. Despite these questions (here and above), I fully support your ministry. It fills such a needed gap. May God continue to bless you.

    • Haydn Sennitt


      “If I’ve read your comments above correctly, you’ve been helped by a female pastor” – Yes, though the book of Joel and the day of Pentecost both witness to the inauguration of women as visionaries and workers of church leadership. So I see no inconsistency; as long as the female pastor was not the lead pastor and was under the headship of a senior pastor there was no concern. Most of the help I received was from men.

      “Romans 14, 1 Cor 8:9 talk about a believer’s liberty and doing what is best for the fellow believer’s and also to not judge other believer’s choices. It’s about food, but why not homosexuality.”

      Because homosexuality is a part of the ‘pornea’ that Jesus preached against in Mark 10. Food laws no longer have an application because a direct revelation from God came that declared all food to be clean for man to eat (see Acts 10:11ff). However, marriage was the first relationship between two humans (see Gen. 2) and is epitomised in the beautiful love between man and woman in Song of Solomon. Sexual purity is such a big theme in the Bible, both Old (Proverbs 1-9) and New (almost every epistle has warnings against sexual immorality).

      “Specifically monogamous homosexuality (everything I’ve read says that this kind doesn’t except among men, but it is somewhat common in women).” – even in women it is rare, and the word monogamous ought to be used loosely because it is not monogamy as we would think of it in an OSA sense. Many ‘monogamous’ gay relationship are open relationships, where members continue to have sex with others outside the relationship. ‘Monogamy’ won’t fix anything and statistically monogamous, long-term gay relationship are as common as seals in the Carribbean.

      “1 Cor 7 talks about satisfying sexual urges by marriage. Obviously the ideal marriage for a person with SSA is to opposite gender. In the less than ideal case, is there an argument for gay marriage? Do you think everyone with SSA has some OSA?” – I don’t believe there is a case for gay marriage- how could their be when Paul assumed marriage to be male-female? On your second question, I believe so. I’ve seen gay men fall in love with women as much as they thought that could never happen. I think their OSA attractions are often latent, but the SSA takes over and hides their natural proclivity. But it can surface.

      “I read your article about the incredible increase in STI for MSM. One problem is anal sex. I think the bigger problem is promiscuity. That ties back to the monogamy question.” – true, but now there are straight men demanding that their wives give them anal sex as a consequence of all the porn they’ve been watching online. So monogamy isn’t the silver bullet.

      “Your ministry refers people to counseling. Have you gotten any statistics back on outcome? Assuming a counselor has seen enough people that they can aggregrate statistics.” – unfortunately not. However, a resource on this that you would find interesting is a tome named “Ex-Gay?” by Drs. Stanley Jones and Mark Yarhouse, who conducted an empirical study of those seeking sexual reorientation through religious means. They discovered that it is possible and especially so among men who identified as exclusively homosexual in their attractions.

      • EricP

        Thanks Haydn for taking the time to reply.

    • Christopher Walker

      Hey Eric,

      There’s a tome called Slaves, Women, and Homosexuals by William J. Webb that analyzes the differences and similarities on how the Bible treats these three groups through time from a redemptive-hermeneutical perspective. It was really eye-opening for me.

  • Vicki

    I believe God uses these types of struggles for good. My sister actually became saved because she was really good friends with a guy who struggle with SSA. This guy would openly confess that he struggle a lot with this but wanted to love and obey God. My sister told me that she couldn’t believe a person who had SSA would love Jesus that much; to willing submit his own flesh. And she wanted to learn more about this God, which lead to Jesus, and she became saved a few years ago. And her life was dramatically transformed out of it. She go out of life of smoking pot, pre-martial sex .. etc.. and now she is crazy passionate for Jesus. So for everyone who is honestly struggling with SSA and being obedient to the commands of Jesus.. Thank you for being an example of what real Christianity is to someone like my sister.

  • Ron Smith – Baptist Minister

    I want to suggest that it is REALLY important for you to do your own very serious study on what the Scriptures in the original Hebrew and Greek actually say on homosexuality. I am not asking you to twist or manipulate the scriptures one millimetre.
    This is what I wrote.

    In the first month after it was published, 7700 emails were received and 7000 (90%) agreed with what I wrote. Several hundred who planned who commit suicide over it, decided against it. A sample of those emails are now near the end of the paper.

    It is time to leave all your homophobia at the front gate and as a conservative evangelical, get REALLY serious about what the Bible actually says.

    • Christopher Walker

      I’m a struggler with SSA, and I consider this stuff to be poison, completely and utterly. What people like this do is dazzle you with the common arguments and defense of the theologically liberal position on homosexuality, and then follow it up with stories upon stories of those whom this has freed to appeal to your sense of compassion. I have no doubt these people were honest in writing to this man, and we must have compassion! But not at the expense of the truth. Here’s what’s at issue.

      First, you need to apply a little Proverbs 18:17 to arguments for or against a position. It says, “The first to plead his case seems right, until another comes and examines him.”

      Second, without first being cross-examined, we proceed right into the letters of gratitude. These provide an emotional appeal. We are tempted to believe that because it helped others, it must be true. But emotional appeals themselves do not have any truth content. If this were a real academic paper on what the Bible really said, you would not be exposed to these, and there would be peer review. The letters’ inclusion are tendentious at best.

      Fellow Christian who is also struggling, I ask you to not take this man’s word for it. What he has put forth appears to be no different in substance than John Boswell’s defense, which is the work all modern theologically liberal scholarship on homosexuality is based upon. I have to question whether he really came to his conclusions independent of any influence from these scholars?

      It demonstrates a profound misunderstanding of human sexuality and teleology.

      Pastor, the way you characterized homophobia was your tell. One who lacks homophobia does not necessarily accept homosexual activity as holy before God; not a sin. Yet you have accused all those who do not think as you do of being homophobic. Even me, who struggles with same-sex attraction.

      There is a middle way. To say that something as a sin does not mean that a person hates or has a phobia of the one who performs the sin. To acknowledge that I struggle with a sin does not in any way imply that I hate myself. How backwards from my actual experience! I hated myself more before I realized the love of Christ in the depths of my sin, back when I was tempted to believe these desires were normative, than now. Now I know what God has in store for me.

      The following mp3 file refutes several of the arguments found in Ron Smith’s treatment, including his treatment of Matthew 19, which is absolutely crucial. Because James White doesn’t address Ron Smith’s arguments directly, but rather the arguments of one Matthew Vines, it will leave some of Smith’s points unchallenged. But what is here is a solid defense of the historic understanding. I urge you all to listen to it.

      And I pray those of you who struggle with me will not be so easily convinced to give up by men with fancy words. We are a special few, blessed by God’s grace. Do not give in to the world.

    • Jonathan Axelsson – Meadow of Tzedaqyal

      Answer to Ron Smith September 18, 2012 at 4:04 PM;
      I have read your article. interesting. I have also done some research on the origins of the five or so verses often quoted when talking about SSA. On my blog Meadow of Tzedaqyal, I have tried to sum up what I have found, perhaps I have sometimes been too eager to read and to find explanations in the scriptures. I am afraid to be too offensive, because after all, this is a very important and sensitive question for many people and I really have a strong empathy for people struggling with this issue. I want to remain humble and listening, because I have been there myself. But I have had good reason to try to go back to the sources, for my own sake, and I have had good support and help from knowledgeable in Jewish and Christian exegesis. That has been one part of my own healing process.

      I probably have repeated myself a lot, I would have been able to compile everything into one post, but as the inspiration have come over me, I have written something new I have found in my searches. Therefore it has become three different articles on the subject Sodom among others.
      Read more on;

  • Ron Smith – Baptist Pastor

    God creates some people gay and it is absolutely fine. My big mistake was to adopt the Baptist Church’s view of homosexuality as my view of myself. It involved much self loathing and hatred for many years. It has affected my physical health considerably. I have now proved that their view is unbiblical and unchristian.

    I will never leave my wife. A promise is a promise. But I have lied about who I am as a person for over 42 years. Not any more.

    It is no longer a struggle. Nothing is wrong. Nothing needs to be fixed. Nothing needs to be cured. I am now proud of being gay and I enjoy being gay very much. It’s fine. I still love the Lord and am still a conservative evangelical in my approach to the Scriptures.

    • Christopher Walker

      You said: “My big mistake was to adopt the Baptist Church’s view of homosexuality as my view of myself.”

      I completely agree with this. I read what you posted about your experiences and they were certainly horrible. I’m so sorry those things happened to you. To relate to you my own recovery experience, it had none of those things. I’m only 30, so probably younger than you. I did monthly counseling for a few years in college before dropping off because I moved to another city. Later, I joined a support group that was a twelve-step program. I was never led to believe I could be completely ‘cured’. In fact, most of my ‘recovery’ didn’t focus on the object of my sexual attraction at all, but on my addiction and view of myself and fear of intimacy. Recovery has changed since you were in it, it seems. And I can participate fully in my own church, because where I go it’s my theology that matters, not my sin. That church was completely wrong for rejecting you like that. I’m angry that that happened to you.

      As part of my own process I learned that I had adopted some views about myself that just weren’t true, so that’s why your statement resonated with me. But what I also learned that wasn’t true about myself was that I am not my feelings. Rather my identity is in Christ. A person with chronic depression does not normalize her depression just because she feels it. She doesn’t place her depression at the core of her self-identity. She gets help. It’s the same thing here. Her brain is wired a certain way, as is ours. They’ve found medicine that helps her, but she had to live with the same stigma in the church. Few ‘get it’ why she just can’t be happy without help.

      Your teachings are not only wrong, but they entrap people into relationships that are not physically or emotionally healthy, ignore our sexual teleology, and the interlocking relational trinity of community between husband and wife and God that marriage relationships were designed for. There’s nothing new in your teachings that hasn’t already been answered by apologists who’ve refuted Boswell and others. And I think the worst part is that you are encouraging people to settle and to believe that their identity is no more than the sum of their desires, and that you are doing so without acknowledging that you have not been able to make peace with your own past. The people who follow you won’t be able to make peace with theirs, either.

      But you are more, sir. I urge you to acknowledge this and seek out Mr. Chambers’ organization, because if there’s one thing we probably can agree on is that he gets it. Exodus is a friendly port.

      • EricP


        It sounds like you had a terrific recovery program and are in a terrific church. The only part I quibble with is on the depression analogy. To rephrase (please correct me if I’m wrong).

        Someone with depression should follow the therapist/psychiatrists directions. Someone with SSA needs to avoid most therapists because they give ungodly advice, and skip psychiatrists all together because there is no medicine for SSA.

        That difference tugs at me. If there’s no medicine that treats it, is it still a mental illness? If most therapists don’t treat it, what does that say?

        • Christopher Walker

          I would hesitate to classify SSA as a mental illness without providing a LOT of clarity about how we’re defining that concept. The depression I was speaking of is the kind that’s due to a chemical imbalance rather than anything psychological. It may also be that way with SSA (favoring arguments for genetic cause of SSA), but it may not (favoring arguments for nurture). Either way, it doesn’t really affect how I’d treat myself. I agree that it’s important we don’t overstate the known science behind what’s going on. The 2011 Jones and Yarhouse study is pretty good about this:

          And that’s one of the critiques I’d have about modern social psychology today. That most therapists and psychiatrists would not respect my wishes -in this singular area- to decide my own course and would instead try to force me into giving up my religious convictions and conform my thought processes to their personal convictions. I think that says more about them than it does about the efficacy of the path I’ve taken, especially since we’re still so early on in the treatment of this particular issue.

          The rule in these circles is to allow the patient to determine his or her course. The right to self-determination. But this rule is not followed by many therapists when it comes to unwanted same-sex attractions, it seems. So agreed; people with unwanted SSA should do their homework before agreeing to treatment. You don’t want to end up in some byzantine treatment program with electro-shock therapy and the like (though I don’t think these exist anymore) and you don’t want to end up in a treatment program that seeks to reverse your convictions about SSA rather than seeking to help you manage your SSA. I can say the twelve-step program I went to focused on the whole ‘me’ rather than focusing on ‘reversing’ my SSA, so maybe that’s what people should look for. I’m also pretty sure mine was Exodus-affiliated.

          I also agree that the analogy has its limits. I think the way I analogized SSA and depression are analogous, but I agree there may not be a 1:1 relationship there in all respects.

          • EricP

            In dealing with my own issue, I had to fire a therapist because she was wanting to rush to solutions I wasn’t comfortable doing. She wasn’t willing to dig for root causes or analyze the problem.

            • Christopher Walker

              That stinks! Hopefully you can move forward from there. :)


  • Ron Smith – Baptist Pastor

    Homosexuality has not been considered a mental illness since 1973. Has it occurred to you that the depression and suicide risks that gays in exgay programs experience is a DIRECT RESULT of the exgay programs?
    When I studied the scriptures for myself AS A CONSERVATIVE EVANGELICAL, I became furious that what I was told was NOT TRUE. I am talking about when they have inserted words that don’t even exist in the HEB & Gk just to help people be homophobic. Sorry THAT IS LYING. When several words are equally valid translations of a Heb or Gk word, they have chosen the ones that gay bash every single time. They have totally ignored the context of scripture just so they can exercise cognitive dissonance and pick and choose what they want to believe. Then churches get up and preach, “This is what the Word of God CLEARLY SAYS about homosexuality.” And when we check the Scriptures whether what they saying is TRUE, just like the Bereans did in Acts 17:10-11, we find they are ACTUALLY LYING. It is ALL about promoting homophobia and church politics. It is definitely not whatthe original Heb & Gk scriptures say. It would be libellous for anyone to suggest I am liberal. Please don’t take my word for this. Get down your concordance and your lexicon and check it out for yourself.
    This whole view that homosexuality is wrong is not based on truth. God creates some people gay and it is absolutely fine. Please check it. Don’t blindly accept what you are being told.
    Why on earth would I want to be involved with Exodus, part up with my money and go back to hating and loathing myself? Alan Chambers now says that a persons sexual orientation can’t be changed…after all this time, and after all the enormous damage he has inflicted on people. I have LIED about who I am for 42 years in a heterosexual marriage. Not any more.
    Being gay is absolutely fine. Just accept and love yourself for who you are.

    • Christopher Walker

      Thank you for your reply.

      You said: “Homosexuality has not been considered a mental illness since 1973. Has it occurred to you that the depression and suicide risks that gays in exgay programs experience is a DIRECT RESULT of the exgay programs?”

      The politics of the American Medical Association aside, sure it has occurred to me that a lot of depression and suicide risks have been caused at least in part to exgay programs, and it’s really sad and I hate that it happened. Early efforts to help the mentally disabled also caused harm. Does that mean all mental disability programs or exgay programs are alike and are intrinsically harmful? Not in the least. The Jones and Yarhouse 2011 study in the Journal of Sex and Marital Therapy titled, “A Longitudinal Study of Attempted Religiously Mediated Sexual Orientation Change,” concluded:

      “On the whole, however, our evidence suggests that some people experience meaningful shifts in sexual orientation and that the attempt to change is not intrinsically or necessarily harmful.
.. We do not believe that reports of change can be summarily dismissed.”

      I accept and love myself for who I am just fine. A lot better than before I went through my recovery program, actually. My view of myself is not at issue. I am, however, not who you think I should be. The issue is what scripture says, and it doesn’t matter to this question at least about what we think of ourselves.

      On the matter of Alan Chambers, if you’re going to use him as an authority to push your point of view, then you really ought to accept what he says in all matters of sexual orientation and not just cherry pick things he’s said that appear to agree with you. I challenge you to provide evidence that he in any way affirmed that changing sexual orientation is impossible. In his latest newsletter from Exodus he gave his own personal testimony that his orientation -has- shifted.

      You said: “When several words are equally valid translations of a Heb or Gk word, they have chosen the ones that gay bash every single time.”
      I must contest that the historic understanding of scripture is in any way ‘gay bashing’. Frankly that’s an anachronistic interpretation as ancient cultures didn’t even think of sexual orientation like we do.

      But that aside, why do those who refute you choose the words that reflect the historic understanding of scripture? It is plausible that they examined some hermeneutical context that you didn’t? Why accuse everyone who differs with you on a scriptural point that latent homophobia is their unspoken motivation?

      “It is ALL about promoting homophobia and church politics.”
      Really? How so?

      “It would be libellous for anyone to suggest I am liberal.”
      I nowhere suggested you were theologically liberal on matters of salvation or any other area besides on what the Bible says about homosexuality, because I don’t know your views on those things. But I do know that your views on homosexuality in the Bible align precisely with the theological liberals’ position on homosexuality in the Bible, which makes you theologically liberal on that point.

      “Please don’t take my word for this. Get down your concordance and your lexicon and check it out for yourself.”
      Trust me, I’m taking you seriously and not just dismissing you. I reviewed your argument and several critical areas don’t fly with what I’ve learned when studying this issue. Two quick examples. You don’t anticipate or answer the pro-marriage argument that references Jesus’ allusion to a properly-ordered marriage in the first verses of Matthew 19. Secondly, you use his line in Matthew 19 about the eunuch to suggest that people can’t change and we should accept their orientation, as if Jesus was in any way referring on a subtextual level to a social problem that wasn’t even something the people of his day could conceive of. It’s anachronistic. As well, your argument referring to the eunuch applies just as well to the pedophile and the alcoholic and the bipolar as it does to the homosexual. Not because the morality of each is in any way equivalent, but because that argument proves too much. After all, they were born that way too.

      Look, concordances and lexicons and Bible translation software are dangerous in the hands of those who don’t know how to use them. It becomes a more refined form of proof-texting in the hands of the untrained. In order to dig into this on the level you are asking me to do so, and do proper justice and respect to the text, it would require years of study in Greek and Hebrew linguistics and hermeneutics. And please don’t take this the wrong way as I mean it descriptively and not as a pejorative, but if you were trained to that degree, you shouldn’t be asking me to just take out a concordance and a lexicon without asking me to undergo that training as well.

      Like most people I have to rely on others who’ve already put in the time and evaluate their works critically. I will suggest to you James White’s The Same-Sex Controversy as an excellent resource for my point of view. If you have another book that was published as a refutation of this particular work, I’d be happy to take a look as well.

  • Pam Ousley

    I too lead a ministry that reaches out to those who desire to abandon unwanted same-gender sexual attractions and the ensuing behaviors. I believe no one who has never felt these attractions can fully understand the person who does; however, I also believe the sin of same-gender sexual behavior is not the central issue. The real issue is that those who feel this way are avoiding growing up into the man or woman God created them to be. Absolutely no one is gay even though these feelings can seem very real. There is nothing more powerfully debilitating than refusing to accept the identity God has bestowed upon each of us. The person who identifies as homosexual has chosen one of many ways of rejecting their true identity. They are no different from any other sinner; their difference is in how they manifest their rebellion against God. I love those who struggle in this way because I fully understand – I lived as a lesbian-identified woman for almost 22 years until being plucked out of that muck and mire by God’s loving Hands 12 years ago. I have worked hard to grow up since then and to address the real underlying issues that caused me to turn to that life to try and self protect and rebel against God.

    • Haydn Sennitt

      Well said, Pam, and blessings to you and your ministry. You’re SO right: there IS NO such thing as a gay or lesbian person, as LeAnne Payne once said, just people with brokenness. ‘Gay’ is such a misnomer and a horribly sad existence, no matter how many people try to spin it with slick presentation, carefully crafted theology and exegesis, or even calling themselves ‘conservative evangelical’ (whatever that means). As Paul said in Galatians 1 (1 Cor. 16:22): ‘even if we or an angel from heaven were to preach another gospel, let that person be anathema (cursed)’. The most dangerous gospel is that which is wolves dressed up as sheep, which is what some of the recent commentary has been here. But stand firm and don’t give into the bullying or the carping or the anecdotal, emotional pressure to accept alien doctrine or give justification to those seeking it because they seek legitimacy. Keep up the good fight! Every bit of this battle is worth it ^^ Hugs.

  • Ron Smith – Baptist Pastor

    Pam What are your professional qualifications as a psychologist/psychiatrist for exercising your “ministry”? If you are a member of their professional bodies, their standards in relation to homosexuality are that homosexuals are not disordered, and that it is not a mental illness. This has been the case since 1973. They also cite that incredible harm can be done by anyone trying to change a person’s sexual orientation. In the US it is now illegal to try to change a person’s sexual orientation on anyone under 18. It should anyone…period.

    You say “Absolutely no one is gay.” Sorry, you have just met your first one and at 65 I should think I know. A 42 year heterosexual marriage has not changed a thing. I am not sexually active to keep the vows I made.

    Some people are born gay as I have been. Why is it so incredibly difficult for you to accept that?

    • Christopher Walker

      “In the US it is now illegal to try to change a person’s sexual orientation on anyone under 18.”

      EDIT: I forgot you’re from Australia. So you may not be aware, but they haven’t even passed the bill in California yet that actually does ban this. It’s still being considered in the state legislature. There is no national ban on changing orientation or any state bans either.

      If there were, then arrest me. [/jokedrums]

      • Cori

        Thanks for mentioning that, Christopher – you beat me to the punch. Not only has the legislation not passed the legislature in CA, it’s being fought by nearly everyone (non-mental health practitioners, especially). It’s been stated that this particular bit of legislation is the first key to chip away at parental rights, and has little to do with SSA itself.

        It’s also important to note that just because something happens in CA doesn’t mean it’s applicable over the rest of the country. Non-residents probably aren’t aware of this, but it’s definitely worth mentioning.

    • Christopher Walker

      You said: “[Pam says] ‘Absolutely no one is gay.’ Sorry, you have just met your first one and at 65 I should think I know. A 42 year heterosexual marriage has not changed a thing. I am not sexually active to keep the vows I made.

      Some people are born gay as I have been.”

      There’s an equivocation here on the word ‘gay’. Pam and every other fair-minded Christian of our persuasion accepts that some people have predispositions toward same-sex behavior. Hello, that is me. I have that predisposition. But she is arguing that there’s a difference between the predisposition and the cultural identity that says if you have the predisposition then you should take pride in it. That identity is a cultural one and no one is born with it. (This is backed up by history, actually–sexual orientation didn’t exist as a concept even as far back as a few hundred years ago)

      You are arguing that you have a certain disposition toward same-sex behavior and that’s what you are defining as ‘gay’.

      So Pam is saying gay = cultural identity. You are saying gay = predisposition.

      But it’s important to distinguish between the predisposition and the cultural identity. They are not the same.

    • Pam Ousley

      I am not a psychologist nor am I a psychiatrist. I am fully aware of how the secular world defines “homosexuality.” I don’t agree with this definition. I don’t have to be a psychologist/psychiatrist to minister to individuals who desire to address their unwanted same-gender sexual attractions and behaviors. I do agree “homosexuality” is not a mental illness. It is a spiritual problem with a spiritual solution. Period. You ask me how I can find it so hard to accept that a person is born gay. My question to you is, why do you think your sexual feelings toward persons of the same gender positively define you as gay? Why can you not even entertain the thought you just might be truly heterosexual – like all of God’s human creations – and you are simply living out of deep deception perpetrated by Satan himself? I pray your eyes will be opened and that your 42 year heterosexual marriage will indeed glorify God by you truly keeping your marriage vows. No one is gay. I will stand on that Truth without budging.

  • Ron Smith Baptist Pastor

    Christopher -I AM a conservative on what the scriptures say about homosexuality. The original Heb & Gk of scripture are the inspired word of God. The translations are very definitely not.

    Sodom. The onus of proof is on the asserter. If you say Gen 19 is a condemnation of homosexuality, please prove that. Sodom is mentioned 47 times. It should be very easy to do.

    If you quote Lev 18:22 & 20:13 to condemn homosexuality, please explain how you obey the equally inspired Word of God in Lev 19:37 & 20:22 “Obey ALL my decrees and ALL my laws”. Take as long as you need. Please start with Lev 20:9 (4 verses away) and explain how many children you have killed lately when they curse their father or their mother. Lev 18:22 & 20:13 no longer apply today. Say they do and you MUST obey Lev 19:37 & 20:22 and obey ALL of the law just as the Bible says. You don’t get a choice.

    1 Cor 6:9 & 1 Tim 1:10. It all hinges on the translation of the Gk word arsenokoitai that Paul invented. The word for homosexuality in NT times was arrenomanes and that doesn’t appear anywhere in scripture. If Paul wanted us to translate it as homosexuality, a word only invented in the 1890s, why didn’t he just use the very commonly used word arrenomanes? Even the translators of the NIV, could’t make up their mind what it meant. In 1 Cor 6:9 it is “homosexual offenders” and 1 Tim 1:10 it is “perverts”. There is a world of difference between those two. It actually means “male prostitutes”. These are the only two occurrences of arsenokoitai in scripture. I have heard it preached at least a dozen times how we get arsenic from arsen in arsenokoitai and how that is a clear indication of the poisonous influence of gays on society. Arsen in Gk means male and has nothing whatsover to do with arsenic. The Oxford dictionary says arsenic comes from the Arabic Al zarnik. All those preachers LIED to whip up as much homophobia as possible. THAT is sin.

    1 Cor 6:9 also talks about the 98% of heterosexuals who have had sex before marriage and are practicing fornicators. I have never heard that mentioned. This proves that people can’t be serious about applying scripture. All they are interested in is gay bashing. It is called cognitive dissonance. BTW what warrant do you have for going around using scripture as weapon causing enormous pain and suffering on people to the point of suicide?

    Can I suggest you watch the movie “Prayers of Bobby” based on the true story of Bobby Griffiths who took his own life as a direct result of his mother’s religious beliefs on homosexuality? It is deeply moving and a serious warning to all of us.

    Rom 1 Paul talks about those who have known the Lord and rejected him and worshipped idols, then he says “Therefore” v24 “Because of THIS” v 26. When both of those are true and ONLY then, he says about those who have had a heterosexual orientation at some point, abandoned that to PRACTICE homosexuality. Note sexual orientation is not mentioned in scripture.
    But all my gay friends have never had a heterosexual orientation to be able to abandon. How can Paul or anyone accuse gays of abandoning something they have never had? Paul also says nothing about those who were born with a homosexual orientation, and abandoned THAT, to TRY to practice heterosexuality which is precisely what I have been doing for 42 years. I have LIED about who I am as a person for all that time. Not any more.
    Disagree? How come the CONTEXT of all scripture is vitally important, but NOT Rom 1?
    I also don’t grow my hair long. That is the other thing that is against nature in 1 Cor 11:14. Gk is the same in both. Please be consistent in your application of scripture.
    But the WHOLE POINT of Rom 1 is Rom 2:1 which says “You therefore have no excuse, you who pass judgement on someone else”. So how about you don’t.
    Jesus never said to love the sinner but hate the sin. He said to love the sinner, but hate your own sin. Billy Graham said it is God’s job to to judge, the Holy Spirit’s job to convict and our job is to love.
    As a conservative, all I have done is use exactly the same concordances, lexicons and principles of exegesis as any other topic. Suddenly, just because the topic is homosexuality, most want to abandon all that just to gay bash. They are even prepared to LIE from scripture to do it by inserting words that don’t even exist in the Heb & Gk. I am adamant that you CANNOT do that.

    • Haydn Sennitt

      Ron, for someone who is so ‘certain’ that he is a conservative, you spend an awful lot of time trying to prove the point. Which suggests that you know deep down it isn’t really true. You and your beliefs are not orthodox, conservative or Biblical.

    • Christopher Walker

      “Christopher -I AM a conservative on what the scriptures say about homosexuality. The original Heb & Gk of scripture are the inspired word of God. The translations are very definitely not.”

      I didn’t refer to any of those verses you spoke of. I referred to Matthew 19. For everything else, I will leave to fair-minded readers of these comments to check out James White’s The Same-Sex Controversy and his refutation of Matthew Vines (here:, wherein he does go directly to the Greek and Hebrew and explains exactly why those words mean what they do.

      The issue is not with the translations but with your interpretation of the Greek and Hebrew text. Like an overly-confident teenager driving a semi truck for the first time, you demonstrate just enough understanding of bible translation software to do serious injury.

      “But the WHOLE POINT of Rom 1 is Rom 2:1 which says “You therefore have no excuse, you who pass judgement on someone else”. So how about you don’t.”
      Why are you judging me for how I critique your arguments and methodology?

  • Ron Smith Baptist Pastor

    @Christopher I was not aware it had not yet been passed. It can’t come soon enough.
    @Hayden The enemy is ignorance. In the first month after my paper (above) was posted, 350 gays said they planned to commit suicide over this and had decided against it. Many families had been reunited. A sample of the emails are attached at the end. I fully intend to do whatever it takes to stop even one more from suicide. Sorry. What I am saying is definitely true. Check it. Again I say. Be good Bereans and check it. Do NOT accept what you are being told.

    For hundreds of years fundmantalists used to preach that slavery was right. They used to site verse after verse proving from scripture that it was right. FINALLY after many years, after many slaves had been killed, the church said they got it wrong and slavery was abolished. I long for the day when the church’s views of homosexuality change to be Biblical and Christlike. Enough is enough.

    • Christopher Walker

      “I fully intend to do whatever it takes to stop even one more from suicide. Sorry.”
      This is the problem. I want to stop suicides too, but your primary mission in your interpretation of Scripture is to stop suicides, not to seek truth regarding the Scriptures, because you’re not willing to entertain the possibility that the Scriptures might be saying something that you fault to be causing suicides (and I would challenge you to provide evidence of this; that a person’s views of homosexuality as anything other than positive causes their suicide and is not just correlative–that’s what Bereans do.)

      • EricP

        Medically it’s clear that gay men suffer mental illness at a higher rate than the general population:

        The question is do we go with medical best practices or the common interpretation of scripture? That’s why many people (myself included) are looking for an alternative explanation. It’s hard to square an interpretation of scripture that leads to more deaths, especially given historically precedents of slavery, civil rights, oppression of women, divorce, and birth control. Or even the minor changes towards women wearing hats, braided hair, jewelry, and not greeting one another with holy kisses.

        Plus I’ve been a part of churches that have added rules — married men can not talk to women, all hugs should be side hugs — in the name of “adultery proof” marriage.

        There’s the whole antagonism between Christians and science. Evolution vs old earth/new earth creationism. Opposition to global climate change (What’s that have to do with the Bible anyway?).

        Finally, there’s the the conflation of politics and religion.

        Sorry, I’ve gone long. My point is I’m not sure if I’m being faithful to scripture or current Christian prejudices.

        • Christopher Walker

          Haha, trust me. I could write books (see below). But I hear you. I definitely do think there is plenty of room for improvement. My issue here is that Ron’s teaching spreads confusion, not clarity.

          For example, I am what I am. I have same sex attractions just like you. I don’t pretend to be ‘cured’, and I still mess up. But I -don’t- suffer from feelings of depression anymore because I went to a good program and had a good support system in my family, councilor, and friends. I’m lucky. :( I shouldn’t be. Everyone should have what I had.

          But that my experience is different from others tells me that it’s not a refusal to adopt the gay mindset/identity that Ron wants me to adopt that causes depression, because if I’m refusing that mindset and I actually lost my depression (and I’m not the only one), that means that a refusal to adopt a particular mindset does not -necessarily cause- that depression. Ron’s all-or-nothing approach to scriptural interpretation is what it is because he has not made this observation that everyone who has SSA has different experiences and beliefs that form the foundation of their reactions to it or the traditional teaching, not because he’s actually discovered what the original languages say about homosexuality that has eluded Biblical scholars for the last 2,000 years.

          My own opinion is that I think Christians who struggle with SSA yet are depressed, like I used to be, labor under a lie of how we view ourselves before God, and that’s what causes depression. I actually think Ron shares this opinion though we disagree about what that lie is.

          Ron believes the lie is that the Bible teaches that homosexual practice is sinful. He believes God views homosexual sex in the confines of a monogamous relationship as just as holy as heterosexual marriage sexual relationship.

          But the lie is actually this: Since God views homosexual practice as a sin, -therefore- God must not love me as much as he loves others because I am this way. I am not worthy.

          That’s completely false. In my own recovery I came to believe that God loves me for who I am, and while I fall short and continue to do so, it is Jesus who loved me before I did anything to deserve it, including my early attempts to ‘become straight’. He didn’t look down on me for having these feelings. He actually loved me!! It’s not enough to know this intellectually, you have to know it inside of you. When I finally started to internalize this new belief, I stopped making becoming straight my focus and started living for him, and my depression began to ebb.

          I still believe homosexual activity is as sinful as any other sexual act outside of marriage. But now I know he loves me, condition-free. And so I love him back by trying to live like him. And when I do mess up, I now have an unshakable belief in the unconditional love of God as a father who doesn’t look down on me with disdain, but who will gird me up and defend me against thoughts of depression and shame.

          So how do we decrease the depression rate of SSA-affected men and women? We keep to truth, yet we change our attitudes and our hearts toward those with SSA. We provide them the love and the support they need to realize the love of Christ isn’t conditional on anything they have to do or say, and we fight the stigma that says gays aren’t welcome in our churches. I believe it’s up to those of us who’ve found our place in Christ to lead that charge.
          How I would approach this issue is in this order:

          1. Establish what scripture says. It’s really helpful if you can find two scholars on either side of equal capability who critique each other. The truth usually comes out then. I keep suggesting James White for my view. If they fight to a draw, don’t draw an opinion and keep searching.

          2. Once what Scripture says is established, that’s when we can meaningfully look at ways in which individual churches can improve upon how they treat people like us.

          3. The issue of how to psychologically or medically treat unwanted same-sex attractions is a different question than either of those two questions, and both science and our worldview are essential to navigating those waters.

          • EricP

            “We provide them the love and the support they need to realize the love of Christ isn’t conditional” — Amen!

            I agree with most of your novella :), but that one line could change so much. I read that a somewhat old survey of young people that 91% believe the #1 trait of the church is homophobia.

            We’ve got to drop the “hate the sin, love the sinner” attitude. I’m not talking about saying homosexuality is ok. I’m saying we should say God’s love is unconditional. If you’ve ever been the target of “hate the sin, love the sinner”, it doesn’t feel very loving.

            We are to be known of as a people of love. Again this doesn’t mean we drop all of our standards. It just means we need to increase our love, so that is what people remember.

            • Cori

              I think that’s an excellent point, EricP. “Love the sinner, hate the sin” isn’t a Christian sentiment, nor is it found in Scripture (ANYWHERE). It actually originates with Gandhi, and has been conscripted by some in the church to (secretly) mean, “You dirty, awful homosexual sinner!” :( I wrote about it a little while ago on my blog in the midst of the Chick-Fil-A hub-bub here in the States. We don’t single out other sins like gossipping or lying with those words – only homosexual sin. Which means that we’re still applying a hierarchy to sins and judging others while ignoring the plank in our own eyes. :(

              A while ago, our pastor said this (in response to “hate the sin, love the sinner”): Jesus never said those words. I think if Jesus were physically walking with us today, He’d say, “Hate your OWN sin. Love your neighbour and don’t worry about his sin. Let that be My worry.”

              Apt words, I think, and much more Biblical and welcoming to people who are impacted by SSA.

    • Haydn Sennitt

      Interesting to see, like many unorthodox homosexualist pastors, hiding being “the enemy is ignorance”. Ignorance of what? Orthodox, reliable reading of the Bible? Yes. That is the ignorance which you are guilty of. Wouldn’t it better to just be honest about it and admit that you are not a conservative, rather thn trying to convince others that you are? Would save a lot of time and energy.

      • EricP

        Haydn (or anyone else),

        What do you call someone who is conservative on ever other issue but homosexuality? There is a fairly large church in Dallas that has a statement of faith that is almost identical to evangelical statements of faith, except they explicitly say that homosexuality is not a sin.

        I’ve heard the analogy of a brownie with a small piece of poo, but that seems like arguing if you can’t have perfect theology, the church shouldn’t exist. Which immediately raises the question of why we have so many denominations and independent churches.

        Thanks for your time.

        • Haydn Sennitt

          If a church is doing that then they are not evangelical and are leading their flock into egregious sin. Person to person sexuality is the most sacred thing two people can do beteween one another: it was the first human-to-human relationship created in the Garden of Eden. If a church cannot get that right, how on earth can they get God right? Read 1 Corinthians 5 and see how much sexual immorality of any kind kills churches. As a person cannot be half prgnant, a church cannot only represent half the truth or the convenient bits. Have a look at the letters to the 7 churches in Revelaiton to see the wrath God has prepared for those churches who misrepresent Him and send His flock to hell (c.f. Ez. 34).

  • Bryan Matthews

    I am constantly amazed by God. Today I was ridding in the car with my Mom and we were taking about a topic very much like this one. I have been a Christan for about 8 years and I have been gay for as long as I can remember. I kept quite about my attractions for the same reasons you mentioned. In my heart I always wanted a husband and for many years I struggled to convince myself that my feelings were ok with God and that He loved me the way I was. All the while in the back of my mind I knew it was a lie. I struggled with salvation over and over, however God is patient and when I got saved this time I stil struggled but held on to my Lord. As I grew in my walk with God and listened to the Bible instead of what others told me God began to open my eyes and bless me with wisdom. Talking to Mom today I understood how lucky and blessed I truly am that I was given this cross to bear. I know that God saw where I could bring Him glory in this affliction. How much God must see in my ability (with His strenght and help of course) to allow me such a cross. Many people ask me if I don’t feel like it’s unfair that I will have to be alone and my answer is that I’m not alone, my Lord and my God are alway with me. I can consentrate more on pleasing Him and helping others that were also counted worthy to walk this path. I want people to understand that YES sex between people of the same sex is a sin and no matter how you may FEEL you can’t rely on that because our feeling want to fill the desires of the flesh and our flesh CAN’T in any way PLEASE God! I’ve read where people say that if you are struggling with anything you are not saved. That is a huge lie. It is only when you become saved that the struggle begins. Why? Until you are saved and no longer a servant of the devil is satan bothered, you are his, but salvation makes you God’s child and the evil one wants to take as many as he can with him to hell. I want so much to meet you in Heaven and talk about our journey and how glad we are that we followed Christ.

    • Haydn Sennitt

      Bryan, PRAISE GOD for that He has revealed to you! Homosexuality does not please God but He really does want to make us clean and bring us into holy, pleasing, clean living! Keep sharing your story.

      • Bryan Matthews

        Thank you for actually reading and commenting on my comment. I love to talk about the Lord and His goodness, mercy, grace and salvation through the blood of His Son, our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. I give all credit for my comment to Him and it’s only because He gives me the words and causes my thoughts to come together that it’s possible. I would love to hear your story and talk more with you and anyone else that cares to friend me on facebook. One thing, however, I will not argue Scripture, that is also a sin and as Paul said only leads to more confusion, strife and genders more questions. I look forward to hearing from you soon and praising God and letting our lights shine in this dark and sin-sick world.
        Oh I was just wondering if you speak Hebrew? I saw “Shalom” at the end of one of your commnents. If so then, Ani medaber katzat Ivrit. Bark hasme ve Baroukh Hashem! Erev tov.

  • CH

    Here is a blog post on how I have dealt with my SSA as my understanding of who God is has grown:

    • EricP

      Thanks for sharing.

  • Haydn Sennitt

    ‘Hate the sin but love the sinner’ is very condescending and Ps. 5:5 interrogates it. There is much truth to it, but there is always much danger in elevating one truth over another. Look at the Rich man in hell: he was still wedded to his sin identity. His name says it: ‘rich man’. The sin AND the sinner are to be crucified so that the righteous and holy person may grow.

  • Ron Smith Baptist Pastor

    If you STILL want to quote Lev 18:22 & 20:13 to condemn homosexuality saying it is an abomination, how are you getting along with listing how you obey every single OT law in obedience to Lev 19:37 and Lev 20 “Obey ALL my decrees and ALL my laws”. Those verses say you can’t cherry pick Lev 18:22 & 20:13 and ignore all the rest. As a CONSERVATIVE I am saying that GOD says you MUST obey ALL of the law if you quote Lev 18:22 & 20:13.

    Lev 18:17 interests me. “Do not hate your brother in your heart” I often ask people, thinking of your gay brothers and sisters in Christ, does that one get a tick or a cross?

    If many of you are involved with exgay “ministries” I would have thought you would be very VERY sure of your Biblical warrant to do what you do. As a CONSERVATIVE, I am saying that the views of most people are in error on the topic of homosexuality because they are inconsistent with what all the rest of the scriptures say. Enormous damage is being caused in people’s lives as a result and it has GOT to STOP. I know many personally. As a CONSERVATIVE I have found you can save many from suicide by telling the truth from scripture. This issue is THAT serious.

    • Christopher Walker

      There is an enormous difference between what the correct theological understanding of a scriptural passage is and how we apply that understanding to ourselves and those around us. Which means one of the possibilities we are faced with is that the traditional understanding of these texts is true, but that the modern church has mishandled their application with regard to the treatment of others. Would you agree that this is one of the available possibilities or not?

      • EricP


        I think most if not all of the commenters agree that the modern church has not had the correct attitude towards people with SSA. So the question simplifies to: Is the bad attitude caused by obeying scripture or ignoring it? Maybe it’s both.

        To all,
        Are there any verses that support a cultural war against SSA? I know there are the hammers that are used in the culture war. But any verses that support purifying society?

        • Christopher Walker

          True, but I was curious if Ron thought that way because from what I can tell from what he’s choosing to write, I’m not convinced he’s been making this distinction. He appears to believe the historical interpretation necessarily commands we as Christians hate homosexuals.

          So, I’m still hoping for some meaningful engagement.

        • Bryan Matthews

          To whom ever asked about cultural wars and scripture to back it up,
          Christ nor the Apostles NEVER wrote anything that advocated violence, physical violence. The Christian struggle is with the spirits of evil,(i.e.satan). Over and over the teachings of the NT tell Christians to love all people and that we should live our lives before the lost that they can see Jesus reflected in us.
          In one Scripture Paul says that he wrote to them before not to keep company with fornicators, idol worshipers, etc. and corrected himself and said that if Christians did that they would have to leave this world. So Paul tells them that if any one calls themselves a brother or a sister (a Christian) and they commit such things not to keep company with them, no not even eat with them.
          I’ve watch so-called, Christians, protesting, carrying signs, shouting hatefilled words and even throughing things at gays. These things should not be! These people ARE lost and along with groups like white supremisit, all give True Christians a bad image. May I suggest that you read the KJV of the Bible, especially the New Testament, and if you don’t know the meaning of a word, look it up and read ALL the definitions and you will be able to tell which one is the right definition. If you are not saved, then I ask, no implore you to seek God. Pray and repent, there is no special prayer, you just need to be truly sorry for your sins. I know my Lord Jesus will begin to lead you and help you, I know because that’s what He did for me over 8yrs ago!
          Above is my FB address and if you want someone to talk to Friend me and put in the message part that you were the one asking about cultural war.
          Bryan Matthews

    • Haydn Sennitt

      All right, Ron; you are anything but conservative. Good to get that out and say it for what it is!

  • Theo

    Here’s Alan Chambers talking about his recent change of mind.

    For a good “bible study” of the verses about this issue, Matthew Vines does an excellent presentation:

    • Christopher Walker

      Well, to say it is a change of mind is a bit of an overstatement. I’m a struggler with unwanted SSA, and the full context of his beliefs are still in complete accordance with what I’ve been taught for years in my support group. It’s a more refined articulation (to which some people are still missing the point) and it’s perhaps a change in strategy for Exodus, but not a change of mind. He’s been saying the same thing for over ten years now, according to this recent blog post:

      Also, Vines gives a good presentation. Here’s a refutation of it from the original Greek and Hebrew.

  • Haydn Sennitt

    Matthew Vines’ presentation is not fair or accurate: it is a distorted view of what Scripture says. It looks kosher, calm, and well considered, but while he may have considered the passages the outcome is pro-gay theology, which stands at odds with Scripture.

    • EricP

      Haydn (or anyone else),

      What do you think of the Alan Chambers video?

  • Ron Smith Baptist Pastor

    Haydn Hang on. Who are the ones twisting, manipulating and straight out lying from the original Heb and Gk of scripture? It is not the gay community. Believe me.

    Just because Matthew is pro-gay doesn’t NOT mean he is at odds with scripture.

    • Haydn Sennitt

      No, you cannot have it both ways. Pro-gay is as pro-racism is. And neither is that conservative.

  • Pingback: As A Matter of Fact Yes – Sexual Sins Are Worse Than Other Sins |()

  • Ron Smith Baptist Pastor

    In summary, it seems to me there is not one verse that says Sodom was destroyed because of homosexuality or that it even occurred there. Lev 18:22 & 20:13 are part of the OT law that no longer applies. If I said it did, I MUST obey Lev 19:37 & 20:22 and obey ALL the law. I would not get a choice & I’m not willing to do that.
    1 Cor 6:9 & 1 Tim 1:10 – arsenokoitai is correctly translated as male prostitute. If we were meant to translate it homosexuals, the Gk would be arrenomanes.
    Rom 1 I have not known the Lord and rejected Him nor worshipped idols. “Therefore” v24 “Because of THIS” v26. I have never had a heterosexual orientation to be able to abandon. Paul also says nothing about those who were born gay (as I was – medically proven) and abandoned that to TRY to practice heterosexuality which is what I have been doing for the last 42 yrs. I don’t grow my hair long which is the other thing against nature. I don’t judge homosexuals because Rom 2:1 specifically forbids me to do that.
    This is how as a CONSERVATIVE I have reconciled my faith and my God given sexuality and I am totally at peace about it. I can look at my gorgeous neighbour with his shirt off and pray Lord, when you created him, you did an absolutely fantastic job. And I don’t feel one bit guilty. My God given gay orientation is very much wanted. I am proud of being gay and I enjoy being gay very much. No more struggle. No more self loathing and hating. No need for any of that.
    Many of the gay Christian couples I know are very deeply in love. It was God who did that and it is marvellous. They are all monogamous and deeply committed to one another for life. Their “gay lifestyle” is to wake up beside the one who means the world to them, get up have coffee and toast, go to work, come home, get tea on, do the washing, watch a bit of TV then go to bed together. All a bit boring really.
    If you see it differently, that is fine. But what I totally reject is any fundamentalist approach that says your views are the only ones that are right and if I were serious about believing what “the Word of God clearly says” I would have to agree with you, and that your views are somehow superior to mine.

    • David

      Ron, if you don’t understand how old testament law applies here and now, I’d recommend John Frame’s work on the subject, as well as “Far As the Curse is Found,” by Michael Williams. It seems like Christians, both liberal and conservative, don’t understand how the OT law interfaces with life this side of the cross. I commend it to anyone who thinks through life in either of the alternatives you’ve offered. Blessings!

  • Christopher Walker

    And The Same-Sex Controversy responds to (and I think refutes) your arguments. That’s my summary. :) Be a Berean, Ron. Read it. :P

    You said: “If you see it differently, that is fine. But what I totally reject is any fundamentalist approach that says your views are the only ones that are right and if I were serious about believing what “the Word of God clearly says” I would have to agree with you, and that your views are somehow superior to mine.”
    First of all, fundamentalism /= historical interpretation. And fundamentalism /= “This is the right interpretation and the rest of you are wrong.” You’ve spent your time doing nothing else on this forum but telling us that you are right and the rest of us are wrong. This is fine in itself because that’s the nature of truth; there’s only one. Just don’t act like you’re not doing the same thing. Rather, fundamentalism = legalism, which is what you were taught when you believed the lie that you had to act heterosexual to ‘fix’ yourself.

    My position is that the historic interpretation is correct, that we ought not put primary focus on our sexual identity, but that we ought to focus on embracing a Christ identity by trying to be like him, and that it’s okay if we mess up. We ought to have that focus not so that we can become acceptable to the Father, but out of gratefulness that we already are accepted.

    If I’ve been a bit aggressive here it’s my inner mama-bear coming out to defend newbies who are just starting recovery or are thinking about it from being taken in by sweet-sounding words from a false teacher that capitalizes on the truth that their negative self image is a false belief, but which tells them that the way to fix this is to jettison their intuitions about what the Bible says about same-sex behavior rather than to put on a Christ identity and follow after him. And in so doing, they are taught to call sin good, to embrace it, and are assured of their destruction. If God can use these words to save even one person from that fate, I hope he does, and that I’m not just being a prideful blowhard. Cause I have been. Plenty of times.

  • Dave

    As someone who also struggles with SSA, I find a couple of things worth questioning in this article.

    First, the idea that adopting the label “gay” actually precludes one from being a new creation in Christ, *specifically* because one can be gay, repentant, and (consequently) celibate. Our language does not use the term “gay” as the Scriptures use the term “aresenokoites.”

    More importantly, as one who has been elected to salvation for the service of others, I must *repent* but not *surrender.* There is nothing in my life that needs to be surrendered to God; it’s already His, bought by His own blood. This sort of theology is actually quite harmful; it surprises me that it passed muster here on TGC’s blog.

    Well-intentioned as it might be, I do not think this article represents a truly biblical view of Same-Sex Attraction.

    • Brian

      Hi Dave,

      I came across your blog today and as I read through your posts I could relate alot to your struggle with SSA and the desire to be loved and not to be lonely all the time. I hope you will post more in the future!

      • David

        Thank you, Brian. I’m in seminary right now, so things are super-crazy, but I will try to write something sooner rather than later. Take care, brother.

  • Dr Daniel J Cannone

    Probably the best exposition on homosexuality from the Christian perspective I have read. I will be archiving this. Daniel Cannone D.O. Chief Medical Officer, Apex Healthcare Solutions

  • Pingback: The Unique Struggle of Same-Sex Attraction « L3inC()

  • Pingback: The Unique Struggle of Same-Sex Attraction « Christ Church Blairgowrie()

  • Pingback: The Unique Struggle of Same-Sex Attraction « Christ Church Blairgowrie()

  • Kathy

    This is definately an epic discussion about SSA. In the end all believers in Christ must go to God and if we are honest with God He will be honset with us and the truth shall set you free.

    I especially enjoyed the comments by Bryan Matthews his innocence and genuine affection for God was inspirational.

    God bless you Hayden and everyone who contributed to this post.

  • Cassandra

    Hello, my name is Cassandra and I also struggle with same sex attraction. It has been quite a journey into freedom, I have fallen a lot, but God has done a lot of work through it. I also am in love with a man who struggles with same sex attraction and is really going through it. I never realized how painful it could be watching those closest to you try to have victory in this area. He has relapsed several times since we met and it makes my heart ache. This is a hard area. I know for me mine was much more emotional based and for him it is sexual, he doesn’t even have to be attracted to you, it is more the high. Thanks for sharing your story, it gives me hope. Yesterday someone told me that my friend’s case is hopeless and I do not believe that, I think victory is possible for all of us. Praying for those who struggle…we will have victory through Christ!!! Amen!!!

  • Brian Reeves

    I’m adding a comment to reassure any men out there (although I’m fairly sure that you ladies could transpose most of what I am saying for yourselves!) that, from personal experience in my life and what I have shared with quite a few others, it is more than possible to be healed of being gay. In most cases the initial feelings of being gay is sown in our minds when we are very young children (“Give me a child until he is seven and I will give you a man”–Jesuits) and then distorted/fanned out of all proportions by Satan, simply to cripple us in our lives. I have been there and it is through an intimate relationship with Jesus that I have been guided out of this lie. The main problem is that it does require one to honestly look at ones childhood and discover what messages you were taking on board from your parents. I am NOT saying that you are blaming them for anything. They also had their own emotional problems (“sins of the fathers will be visited on the children……”). This is a very tough thing to do since I felt initially that I was having the “emotional rug” pulled from under my feet, my very foundations were being shaken with this honest exploration. However, with Jesus, I discovered that: I didn’t know who I was physically; I craved for being just simply, honestly loved; etc. Other practical factors didn’t help since I came from the age when “The birds and bees” were not even acknowledged let alone even discussed so I was greener than green. So, having honestly faced who and where I was, and this happened over some time, I drew Jesus into the situations and, with faith, I asked for for the various crippling attitudes/situations to be healed. My father’s utter coldness towards me was a big one and I feel Jesus took me into the grief without fully recognizing the roots of the grief. But He deals with each of us individually in utter compassion and therefore uniquely to our circumstances.
    So basically I am saying men, do not accept any crippling lies in your life when there really is another glorious way to wholeness! Brian.

  • Brian Reeves

    I am convinced that attraction to the same sex mainly originates in the messages you feel you have received in early childhood, “Give me child until he is seven and I will give you a man”. Certainly this has been born out by my own experiences and those I have subsequently shared with over the past twenty years. There is no unique pattern, we are all quite different but healing is certainly possible and basically involves in completely, honestly looking at those early painful feelings; saying you are sorry to those concerned and asking their forgiveness for the hurts you have inflicted. Then bringing Jesus into those events and believing in His healing power, even back into your childhood. One common theme is that so many of us were not given clear roles as males therefore we have the desire to compensate and attend the gym; masturbate; look for a father in other men, view pornography; plunge into a sexual relationship; etc., etc. Once I opened myself up to being totally honest with Him, then gradually each pain was fairly ruthlessly exposed and gently, lovingly healed. It has taken five to ten years and Jesus has often had to creep up on me being the self confident individual I was, but through all the tears and heart searching I have at last reached a security in myself and new relationship with my beloved wife. Early on it was touch and go, and Satan did all he could to drag me permanently over the edge, as he still does in a mild form, but I know that Jesus is on my side and as long as I trust in Him, all will be well. I only wish that I could help other men to grab hold of this life line but it is not an easy route to take, but then Jesus made it quite clear that it was all to be an uphill struggle: although what freedom in the other end!

  • Cassandra

    I have a little over a year of sobriety from acting out in SSA. I praise God that he is helping me through this struggle. My best friend Robert deals with the same struggle and is currently confused and acting out, these are his words. Please join me in prayer all of you who have been there and those who have a heart of love for those of us who have a heart towards us. Thanks!

  • Brian Reeves

    I will certainly pray for you both, Cassandra and Robert. Focus on Jesus, trust and be honest with Him and He will sort things out. With even the smallest temptation, I call out to Him and all is well May you both grow deeper and deeper into His love. Brian.

  • Brian Reeves

    If either of you would like to make contact with me and chat about anything that I have said or experienced, then I give the person looking after this site to pass on my email address to one or both of you. Trust in Jesus. Brian.

  • Chris

    Do you think SSA is a life-time battle or at some point of life, it will be totally gone by God’s grace. Someone told me that if I battle this attraction for years and still battling it, I am not born again because she claims that I am cherishing it. she also states that Sin doesn’t hang around long in the thought life if you are rightly battling. Is it true? Thanks

    • EricP

      It will probably be a lifetime battle. I know very strong Christians who have been struggling for 15-20 years and expect to struggle for the rest of their lives.

      • chris

        That lady (who was a lesbian for many many years but now frees from homosexuality for many years) told me that “If you continue to battle it for years, then you are cherishing it. Sin doesn’t hang around long in the thought life if you are rightly battling.”
        she also claims that Nick (the author of the blog post, Is It Sin to Experience Same-Sex Attraction? posted on desiring is not regenerated because he still has SSA. Though I agree with her that SSA is sinful and is not right with God, merely having the attraction without giving in to lust can demonstrate that one is not regenerated? What do you think? Any thoughts? Thx

    • Chris W

      Whoever ‘she’ is, ask her if she’s perfect. If she’s not then by her own standards she must not really be saved.

      See? Kind of a silly thing for her to say. :) Your salvation rests on Christ’s grace, not in your ability to not sin. God saved you in spite of this sin, not because you should have beaten it by now. Keep your focus on Jesus, not your sin. Hope this helps.

      Chris W.

      • Chris

        I have the same thought too. But she keeps saying that having SSA means I keep lusting. But I told her I keep fighting. And she said “If God has truly re-birthed you, He will give you power to overcome”. She implies that this sin won’t and should not hang around long; and it can’t be last for years. If it does, it means I am not born from above. I am still struggling if I am born again. So sad

        • Chris W.

          Well, she’s wrong. And not just wrong, but obviously wrong. I mean, where in the Bible does she even get the idea that we will attain perfection this life? Or even that there is a time limit to how long we are to struggle with a particular sin in this life? All she needs to do is look in the mirror. Is she treating this sin differently than she treats her own sins? If so, how is that biblical? Is she perfect yet? If not then she must not be regenerated either. This is silly and harmful.

          I get the sense that she doesn’t understand male sexuality. I think it’s a lot more hardwired and harder to change than female sexuality. She’s probably looking back on her own experiences and assuming you work the same way. If you didn’t like it, you wouldn’t do it, so she assumes. But Romans 7 and 8 says differently.

          Romans 7:14 “For we know that the Law is spiritual, but I am of flesh, sold [m]into bondage to sin. 15 For what I am doing, I do not understand; for I am not practicing what I would like to do, but I am doing the very thing I hate. 16 But if I do the very thing I do not want to do, I agree with the Law, confessing that the Law is good. 17 So now, no longer am I the one doing it, but sin which dwells in me. 18 For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh; for the willing is present in me, but the doing of the good is not. 19 For the good that I want, I do not do, but I practice the very evil that I do not want. 20 But if I am doing the very thing I do not want, I am no longer the one doing it, but sin which dwells in me.

          “21 I find then the [n]principle that evil is present in me, the one who wants to do good. 22 For I joyfully concur with the law of God [o]in the inner man, 23 but I see a different law in [p]the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner [q]of the law of sin which is in my members. 24 Wretched man that I am! Who will set me free from [r]the body of this death? 25 Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, on the one hand I myself with my mind am serving the law of God, but on the other, with my flesh the law of sin.

          Romans 8 “Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. 2 For the law of the Spirit of life [a]in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death. 3 For what the Law could not do, [b]weak as it was through the flesh, God did: sending His own Son in the likeness of [c]sinful flesh and as an offering for sin, He condemned sin in the flesh, 4 so that the requirement of the Law might be fulfilled in us, who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.

          When Paul is saying “I am doing the very thing I hate” is is speaking the present tense. He is already regenerated, but he says here he still struggles with sin.

          Romans 8:15 “For you have not received a spirit of slavery [g]leading to fear again, but you have received [h]a spirit of adoption as sons by which we cry out, “Abba! Father!” 16 The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are children of God, 17 and if children, heirs also, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him so that we may also be glorified with Him.

          “18 For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us.”

          Romans 8:23 “And not only this, but also we ourselves, having the first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our body. 24 For in hope we have been saved, but hope that is seen is not hope; for who hopes for what he already sees? 25 But if we hope for what we do not see, with perseverance we wait eagerly for it.”

          Paul is saying that our spirits have been redeemed, but that we have not yet had our bodies fully redeemed. And yet he says that we still have hope that this shall happen -because- we have been saved through the Spirit who dwells in us. It is our salvation that comes first, not our putting off of sin.

          It sounds to me like you’re saved, Chris, primarily because you’re worried that you’re not. People who aren’t regenerated don’t care about whether or not they’re saved. But you do! So don’t listen to her. Keep your hope alive, persevere. I have unwanted SSA too. I tire of it from time to time, but I want to encourage you to keep going and keep your trust in Jesus that even he will overcome your sin even though you can’t. Even if it takes your lifetime, which for many it does, regardless of whether they’re gay or straight.

          I would also encourage you to seek out counseling and support groups. If there are none in your area, then there are some great teleconference support groups from a place called Healing for the Soul. They’re great people–I’ve taken advantage of the service before, and they can provide encouragement and support, and will teach you how to properly look at same-sex attraction from a historic Biblical worldview, that while same-sex behavior is sin, we should be focused on becoming more like Christ instead of focused on fixing that sin. There is a difference there, which is that when you are focused on Christ, you’re focused on your salvation, not your sin, and as a result your hope in Christ is always easier to see.

          • Chris

            Thanks for your kind words, Chris. I still keep having dialogue with that lady. Basically her ground is whoever continues to have same-sex feelings or attractions, this person is not a born-again Christian. She even claims that this person is a false convert; a child of Satan and keeps saying to me that I love my lust for men. She made such a bold claim probably because she has been completely free from all these feelings and attraction. She said that if God truly has done supernatural work on me, I should be completely free from it because I have a new heart and a new nature. It follows that if anyone still has these desires, it is easily to conclude that this person is not a true Christian. May God have mercy on me to show me the way.

            • EricP

              Ask her if there is any sin she struggles with? If she claims to be perfect, she is deceived 1 John 1:8. If she is not, what is the difference between the two of your sins?

              But SSA is not a sin. Acting on the attraction, dwelling on the attraction could be sin, but having uncontrolled feelings in not sin.

            • Chris W.

              I can only shake my head in sadness. She has no Biblical basis for claiming that redeemed people do not struggle with besetting sin. She herself is a shining example that her view is false, because while she may have kicked her same-sex attraction, her pride has taken its place.

              There’s only so much you can do–please don’t trouble yourself too much about convincing her otherwise.

  • chris

    Is same sex attraction is same as lust?

    • Chris W.

      I think they’re different things. I think lust is closer to willful engagement in sexually fantasizing about a person or thing. Same-sex attraction doesn’t need that element. You can be drawn to a person of the same sex without fantasizing about them just like a straight person could be drawn to a person of the opposite sex without fantasizing about them.

  • Pingback: Why the Decision of World Vision Lacks Compassion | Rob Tombrella()