Good Morning Brothers…
The question of “our nature” at birth, has been bouncing around in my head for a number of weeks. Are we born guilty of the sin of Adam, or are we born innocent of that sin? There are a large number of voices already out there making clever and profound arguments both pro and con. I’m loathe to add my voice to the chorus, especially when I’m not convinced of this issue either way. I’m interested…but not convinced. When I began to write this series about “Blind”, my intention was to address the issue of homosexuality from the point of view held by those with a “pro-gay” agenda. The agenda being a very simple argument, “If we are born this way, then we are not responsible for it.” Or…in other words, “My pre-existing condition exempts me from coverage.”
Is the child born with downs syndrome scolded because of their need for care? Is the man born with a disfigured back told to straighten up and walk normal? Is the woman born blind chided for her blindness and told to see? Does the homosexual fit into this category?
As the ping-pong balls bounce, my fingers find the passage from 1 Corinthians 15:21-22, “For since by a man came death, by a man also came the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ all will be made alive.” As my mind ponders on this passage I can’t help but think about what God said about all of this way back in Genesis 3:22, Then the Lord God said, “Behold, the man has become like one of Us, knowing good and evil; and now, he might stretch out his hand, and take also from the tree of life, and eat, and live forever”
These passages taken together really make me think about Adam’s sin, being the catalyst, for death to enter the world. It makes me think that Adam and Eve lived in a reality which did not include death, but only included life. That they lived in a reality of communion with God where they could walk with Him and talk with Him in the cool of the day, and this reality was shattered by transgression, by open rebellion. God withheld the immediate antidote, namely…the tree of life, because His love for His creation was compassionate and true, and therefore (we) needed to understand the “Why”, and not just blindly receive the remedy. The difference between mercy coupled with love and mercy absent from love is often in the timing. Mercy delivered immediately, while potentially life saving in the short term, lacks the impact of long term life change. Mercy coupled with love, waits for the lesson to be learned before providing the needed remedy. The waiting, causes those whom needed mercy, to reach out and provide mercy to others…thus, a tangible life change.
Mankind needed to learn this lesson. Death entering the world teaches us that Jesus is the only way. Man cannot achieve salvation, or achieve life. If the remedy was given immediately, what would the lesson learned be? Sad to say, the lesson learned looks very familiar to ‘Christian practice’ today. If I do something bad…I go confess and ask for forgiveness.
“Uh-Oh…I stumbled into death. I better go eat some fruit from the tree of Life.”
This method of righteousness teaches us nothing. It barely addresses discernment between right and wrong. Legalistic at best, it never teaches us the “Why”. (Why should I seek God, if all I need to do is eat this fruit?) If the Lord had provided a tit-for-tat method for repentance and turning from death to life, then His intention would be to remain veiled in mystery. History shows us His intention is to not remain veiled…but to reveal Himself to us through life transformation…ours and His. The coming of Jesus Christ is God incarnate, or God in the flesh, to live among us sinful mortals…that is a life transformation…leaving heaven to live on earth. His intention, is to share Himself with us, but first, He needs to take care of the whole death-thing…which Jesus does once and for all on the cross. Our life transformation is in letting God in, and letting God lead. Think of it this way, God wants to dance and sing with us, all He is asking is that we let Him lead.
My fingers flip to this passage in 2 Corinthians 3:16-18 as the ping-pong balls begin to slow down, “but whenever a person turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit.” When we turn from death to life, we find freedom from judgement, we find ourselves being transformed into the very glory of the Lord Himself. After the first couple awkward dance steps, we fall into the rhythm of letting the Lord lead, and we realize what it means to be created in His image. We are a mirror to the essence of the Almighty God Himself. We are a reflection of His purpose and power. We were made for this, we were created specifically to be in an ongoing eternal communion with our Heavenly Father…we were made to be His partner…His bride…His co-heir…His family.
Are homosexuals born with a “gay-gene”…?
I don’t know. Honestly, I don’t care. What I do know is this…we were all created in the image of the Most High God. When I read through Scripture, I see example after example of Jesus telling the lame to walk, the blind to see, the dead to rise again into life. Whatever “our nature” at birth happens to be, our lives are still in need of transformation, and Jesus is that transformation from death to life. There is no pre-existing condition which is outside of the coverage of the cross. We all come to Jesus the same way…guilty in our sin…yet yearning for life.
Shh…the ping-pong balls are sleeping.