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Pastor Interviewed On CNN Says Jesus "Accepted Everyone"

Let me preface what I say by stating that Iím not homophobic, as 99 % of the homosexual people Iíve corresponded with say I am. Iím not addressing the gay issue in this article, only the way certain Christians have responded to the issue. If you want to know my thinking on homosexuality, you can visit my web site.

In the last couple of days Iíve heard three people say that Jesus "accepted everyone" that came to Him, proving that oneís sexual preference doesnít really matter to Jesus. Well, to say "Jesus accepted everyone" is a pretty vague statement and I don't think it's all that relevant to the context in which these words were said.

Two of the three people who said these words were pastors. One was a Canadian Anglican pastor and the other a U.S. Evangelical mega-church pastor. The context of this "Jesus accepted everyone" statement was in relation to the recent gay pride weekend that was celebrated across North America. As a side note, this yearís celebration brought 80 million dollars into the Toronto economy, making it the biggest money maker in Torontoís economic yearly calendar in the last few years.

CNN interviewed the U.S. pastor who said that he changed his thinking on the gay lifestyle when a well respected and close Christian friend "came out" and acknowledged that he was gay. Once learning that his friend was gay this pastor could no longer believe that Jesus might not be so accommodating to his friendís lifestyle. I have one question for this pastor. "Who dictates and defines what you believe, your friend or the Bible"?

Thereís problems with a Christian saying "Jesus accepted everyone who came to Him", no matter what context itís said in. One problem is the use of the past tense in this statement. When you say that Jesus "accepted" everyone, youíre speaking in the past tense which means youíre speaking of Jesusí three year term of ministry on earth. The fact of the matter is that thereís more to who Jesus is and how He thinks than what can be seen in those three short years. Read the book of Revelation and youíll see that Jesus has certain strong opinions today on such issues of morality, and Iím not just speaking of the gay issue. Those who claim Jesus accepted everyone while he was on earth ignore the things He said once He physically left this planet.

Another problem is that these people misunderstand how Jesus accepted people when they approached Him while He was on earth. Did Jesus really accept everyone who came to Him in those three years? Well, it depends on what you mean by "accept". I donít believe Jesus ever turned anyone away who wanted to talk with Him. He talked with prostitutes, tax collectors, lepers, and even Pharisees, something He probably wasnít too thrilled about. So in this sense of the word, Jesus didnít turn anyone away, but engaged them in conversation.

If you look at some of these conversations that Jesus had with the above people youíll soon learn that even though He accepted them into conversation, He did not accept some of the things they did. He told the prostitute to stop committing adultery. He certainly rebuked the Pharisees for their lifestyle. So accepting people into conversation and accepting them in the totality of who they are and what they do are two different things altogether.

Iím sure youíve read a few verses where Jesus told the ones He accepted into conversation to repent. Such repentance would lead to real faith and subsequent salvation. Telling people to repent clearly shows that Jesus did not accept everyoneís way of living. Any passive reader of Scripture should understand that.

Itís clear that Jesus does not accept everyoneís way of living. Thereís no logic in thinking He does. If He did, then He wasted His time on earth and He suffered in vain. To teach anything different is to teach something outside the pages of the Bible, and such teaching is not Christian, so donít call it Christian.

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