Pastor J.D. shares the importance of building relationships with the grace and truth of the gospel and why these relationships need to be stronger than our words as we befriend our neighbors.

A glimpse inside this episode:

The narrative our culture puts forward regarding homosexuality is that we have only two options—affirmation or alienation. Sadly, the church has far too often simply condemned and alienated those in the LGBT community. What greater lie could we tell about our Savior than to distance ourselves from others, especially at their moments of greatest hurt and vulnerability?

Jesus shows us that a third response—a gospel response—is possible. He shows us how to respond with grace and truth, how to hold out God’s truth and God’s love, not having to choose between the two.

  • Truth without grace is fundamentalism.
  • But grace without truth is vapid sentimentality.

Failing in either puts us out of step with Jesus. As believers, we should be known not only for our unflinching commitment to truth, but also for our excessive love toward our neighbors. We must not only speak the truth of Christ, we must do so with the spirit of Christ.

Now, this specific question:

  • My hope with this is that the invitation would come in the context of a true friendship.
    • Brad Hambrick has written a book called Do Ask, Do Tell, Let’s Talk, all about how important it is for Christians to develop deep friendships with people in the LGBT community.
    • If our words about homosexuality are stronger than our actual relationships with the gay and lesbian community, we’ve made a mistake.
    • As Rosaria Butterfield puts it, it is “violence” to have our words be stronger than our deeds. So if you’re going to say “no” to an invitation to a gay wedding, you should couple that with a “yes” to inviting them into your home.
      • If me declining the invitation is a surprise to them, then I haven’t been a good friend to them by being honest about what I believe and what the gospel says.
  • In the end, though, it is never loving to lie to someone—either overtly or indirectly—by telling them we approve of something God does not.
    • When I attend a wedding, I do so to support what the couple is doing and to pledge to uphold their marriage. I could never do that with a gay couple.
    • Bonus question: would you bake a cake for a homosexual wedding?
      • Similar to just before, I couldn’t support in a way that celebrates the union. Giving my art as a cake designer would be celebrating in the marriage – same if I was a photographer or caterer.