However, here’s the thing with Greg Johnson — he of PCA fame. Where does one draw the line? Johnson insists that he is a celibate sodomite. Johnson insists that Jesus has taken away all the guilt and shame associated with being sexually aroused by other men. Johnson thanks Jesus that he has never given into his ongoing temptation to mount other men. For that, we can thank God with Johnson and honestly pray that Johnson never satisfies his sinful sexual orientation by consummating his sinful twisted sexual desires. We can agree that Johnson stands among the Redeemed as he continues to put off the old man of lustful inordinate and twisted desires and puts on the new man of self-control and celibacy.
Here is the kicker though … do we want the men who stand behind the Holy Desk to struggle with this kind of sin? Do we want to make them examples before our little boys and girls? And if we say that is acceptable then what is to stop us from putting men in the pulpit who are sexually oriented towards farm animals?… towards the dead? …. towards little children? Let’s be consistent here… are we ready to say that;
“Well, as long as they’re celibate and don’t act on their sexual desires to have carnal knowledge of our pet Great Dane, Buford, it is perfectly acceptable for them to be preaching and counseling people as our Pastor”?
I don’t doubt that Greg is a wonderful chap — blood-bought by Christ. I don’t doubt that he may be compassionate and understanding. I have had more than one sodomite friend who was both. I don’t doubt he is articulate. I don’t doubt that he can have a profound understanding of theology. What I do doubt … what I know cannot be tolerated is the idea of promoting this aberrant sinful behavior by showcasing it in the Church as existing in the Pulpit. Giving God’s imprimatur to Johnson being in the Pulpit is to normalize this kind of gross sexuality. It is to shout from the rafters that God wants men who sexually want other men — though remaining celibate — in the pulpit. This can be no more true than to say that God wants men who sexually want farm animals, dead people, or little children — though remaining celibate — to be in the pulpit.
A redeemed Greg Johnson — bless his anguish and loneliness — can not be allowed a misplaced sympathy that will only result in creating more Greg Johnsons by way of emulation. It is not alright to have these kinds of desires — even if one wishes they didn’t have them — and it is not alright to say to God’s people “it’s alright to have these kinds of desires and be in the pulpit.” It is no more right than to have those desires and be in a pulpit than it is to have the other types of desires mentioned above and be in a pulpit.
The fact that we are even having this discussion suggests how far we have fallen as a people. It suggests also how mainstream sodomy has become. Sodomy has lost its abhorrence quotient (AQ). We still have an abhorrent quotient for where we might learn of a man’s sexual desire for a child … a man’s sexual desire for a farm animal … a man’s sexual desire for the dead but we no longer find a man’s sexual desire for another man to be abhorrent. No … instead we talk about sympathy and understanding and we advertise how noble and Christian we are by placing such men in the pulpit.
The pro celibate sodomites in the pulpit contingency now shout about Grace taking away guilt and shame without realizing that instead what we’ve done is we’ve covered our ongoing guilt and shame with the sinful fig-leaf of guilt justification calling it “grace.” When/if Christ – gracefully- removes our heart of stone; we realize how disgusting the natural man is in our Creator’s eyes … and homosexual lust becomes anathema to the heart of flesh. This is not to say that besetting sins instantly go away. It is to say that one never makes peace with their besetting sin. When a Christian goes around saying “I am gay and will never be other” it strikes me that one has made peace with their besetting sin.
Next, I wonder how long it will take “the pro celibate sodomite in the pulpit crowd” to go from saying, “It’s alright — he’s celibate,” to next saying… “It’s alright — he’s a strictly “gay” monogamist.” My money is on that next half step happening very quickly.
I don’t know what the PCA will do in a few weeks on this subject. In some sense, it really doesn’t matter if only because just the fact that the PCA is considering this goes a long way toward suggesting this battle is already lost in the PCA. I do know that God has promised that neither the gates of Hell nor by extension the gates of the soft pink celibate homosexual bathhouses will prevail. I do know that someday Greg Johnson — and our whole culture — will be delivered from the necessity of even having to have this conversation.
I look forward to that day. I’m sure Greg does as well.
One more word on this matter. I have viewed Johnson’s 5-minute presentation to the last PCA General Assembly on this/his issue several times. One might call it an apologetic for his position. One thing that is easily noticed is that Greg here is telling his story. The apologetic here is one that pulls on heartstrings and delivered in such a way to win sympathy. Johnson, in this appeal, is very much saying when the matter is reduced to its essence… “Please feel sorry for me. I’ve been a victim all my life. As Christians, it is your job to feel sorry for people who have had a hard life.” After listening to Johnson one comes away thinking … “If I don’t vote to sustain Johnson and his cause I am a hard-hearted blaggard. ” However the PCA has to realize that sympathy towards Johnson is a lack of sympathy towards God and His truth and it is a lack of sympathy towards the people of God.