Books:

The Eleventh Commandment: A Fresh Look at Loving Your Neighbor As Yourself
By: Dwight K. Nelson

The Peaceful Heart: A Practical Guide to Unconditional Love and Forgiveness
By: Mary Hayes-Grieco


Want more books?
Visit the Whosoever Bookstore

Or search Amazon.com for books related to GLBT people and Christianity.

GLBT Christianity Book Search


Explore More Whosoever:


Love the Sinner, Period


by: Thom Britton


Love the sinner ... hate the sin.

I live in a small community of conservative Christians that uses this phrase with reference to every "vice" known to man. Growing up, I heard it used with regard to alcoholics and drug abusers more than the gay community. But I never saw action on the words. You know what I mean, loving someone regardless of their actions, being genuinely concerned, looking beyond the fault to the need. Don't get me wrong, I am not comparing being an alcoholic with being gay. It is just that this rhetoric has been used for many years in the church, I think to pacify the public for their bigotry against people not like themselves.

Most Christians don't know what the word "sin" means. What is a definition of sin? A transgression, or what ever a church says is a sin? This point I believe is one that no one person or group of people can say for sure what sin is, only God has that ultimate decision.

Being called a sinner for being gay goes against everything that I know God is. If "you" really loved me the "sinner" why don't you befriend me, get to know who I am and what I stand for? Listen to me? Walk a mile in my shoes; face the problems that I face all of my life. Don't scream at me as I walk by or call me names just loud enough so that I can hear. Don't use those euphemistic gestures to signal that a gay man is in the room. Where was your love when I was lonely and desperate and had the gun to my head? Where is your love when we cry? You hate the sinner right along with the sin. It's easier, you don't have to get involved, or maybe change your way of thinking, or God forbid actually love a person not quite like yourself.

It is easy to say the words "love the sinner," because it makes the world a better place. Put those words into action -- now there is an idea that doesn't come so easy. God's command for us to love our neighbor as ourselves comes with a high price tag, so high that God had to send His Son Jesus to pay that price. Jesus is there with me, the gay sinner, every step of the way, in every lonely night and He was there when the gun was to my head. You want to know the bizarre thing? He never once said anything about my "sin." He only loved me for who I am and who He had created me to be. By the way, I am a sinner but being homosexual is not the sin.

God does love the sinner. That means you. But He hates when we lie to each other, cheat each other, disrespect each other, and harm each other. Now there are some "sins" to hate. Why not just love me, respect me, be kind, and be thoughtful to me? Look at your own actions and how they speak to the world around you.

We are all God's children and deserve the love of everyone. We, as gay Christians, should make sure that we love everyone, as we would want them to love us. Be concerned for one another, pray for one another, support and uphold one another. It is a challenge to us to be an example of love the sinner, which we all are and hate the sin, bigotry for one.

Jesus never said these specific words, "love the sinner, hate the sin," but used actions to show His love for sinners, the Samaritan women, the thief on the cross, and me. I want to be like Christ and love through my actions and let God worry about the sin. I can't do anything about that anyway. Only through Christ can you be forgiven of your sin and only He and you know what that is.

I want to be an example of how to love the sinner -- period. Be a love light in this world, be a brother, be a friend, be a companion, be a true Christian to everyone.

Copyright © 2002 by the author
All Rights Reserved


What's your opinion? We want to know!! Send a letter to the editor, write to the author of this article by clicking on their name at the top of the article, or fill out our reader survey!!

Back To The Table of Contents