A few days ago I attended a conference featuring a panel
discussion among Dr. Ben Mitchell, Dr. Wesley Hill, Dr. Dan Beals, and Dr.
William Hamel. The subject was bringing
the gospel to bear on sexual brokenness in our culture. Here were some of the notes I took on this
“Lead with what we are FOR, not what we are AGAINST. We now live in a predominantly secular
culture, and we should bring the themes of the gospel to real life
situations. People are broken but God
offers forgiveness, restoration, and redemption. The gospel restores relationships and
families. Assume the best of people you
interact with, don’t vilify other people.
Build genuine friendships; don’t be impersonal. The gospel is more than a type of information
that may be communicated in, say, a car manual.
Rather the gospel is a true, coherent story that makes sense of
life. It contains a vision for human
flourishing. We must hear its commands
against sexual immorality in this context.
In too many cases we have become insular and parochial, even marginalized
in our culture. We should associate with
all kinds of people. Paul says in 1 Cor
6:9-11, ‘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. And such were some of you….’ This passage reminds us that at least some of
us were numbered among these people, and yet we were washed and sanctified by
Christ and His Spirit. Jesus was a
friend of sinners, and so should we be!”