How do you share the Gospel with someone from the LGBTQ community? It is a question that every single evangelical Christian should be asking themselves since it is very clear that this is a growing movement of people. They are no longer the hidden society that everybody pretends does not exist. It is imperative that we understand how to share the Gospel with them. So, how do we as evangelical Christians share the Gospel with someone from the LGBTQ community? Get ready for the most radical answer…
The same exact way we share the Gospel with anyone! Really. No joke. Why do we feel the need to have to put a certain angle on the timeless Word of God and the living Spirit of God that has saved countless millions of people through the ages? The Bible teaches us that “faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God.” Paul reminds us in Romans 1:16 (my favorite verse) “For I am not ashamed of the Gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to anyone who believes.” Did you hear that? “Power of God for salvation to ANYONE who believes. This tells us that it is the clear, spoken, unadulterated message of the Gospel that God uses to save sinners. This is the method that He has used since the beginning of the church in the days of the Apostles. It has proven successful throughout the centuries and millenniums of church history. It has saved the poor, the rich, the king, the criminal, the prostitute, the moral, the religious, the unjust, the self-righteous, and yes, even the homosexual. God’s Word is powerful! We don’t need to come up with any new angle.
In my opinion, one of the biggest problems that the church has today is that we have forgotten the power of the Gospel. In the day of psychology, introspection, individualism, and self-help, the church has fallen prey to the belief that the Gospel needs to be tailored in every kind of a way so that it “fits” exactly the stage of life, situation, or orientation of a particular person. We have relied on ways of pragmatism rather than the power of the Gospel. We have said, “This type of person needs to be approached in this type of manner using only these type of words. That’s the most effective way to reach them.” Somehow, in our advanced thinking and methodologies, we have come to believe that we can really “improve” the Gospel so that it can be more effective in reaching a certain population. But remember that the Apostle Paul said that anyone that adds to or takes away from the Gospel should be cursed. Very strong words.
But the truth is that the church has sometimes been guilty of doing that for the end goal of reaching more people. For instance, there are churches that have decided not to talk about sin so much because it makes people feel uncomfortable and it makes them not want to come back to church. Dangerous. This is taking away from the Gospel. Remember Paul’s strong words for those who do that. Then there are church leaders who study business growth and development models more so than studying the Gospel, and they employ these secular based models to church growth instead of relying on the power of the Gospel and the preached Word which the Lord has always used to add to the numbers of the church. Again, in a subtle way, in some of these instances, the Gospel has not been the “primary” source for trying to reach the lost. Big mistake. Grave danger. The results? Huge auditoriums filled with unregenerate people who are just going through the motions.
So, I venture to say that anytime the Gospel of Jesus is downplayed or altered for the sake of trying to be more effective in reaching a specific person or group of people, the Lord is not glorified because His crucified and risen Son is no longer on display.
Back to sharing the Gospel with someone from the LGBTQ community…we don’t have to do anything different. The Gospel, the way that it was presented in Scripture, is fully sufficient today to save the lost sinner, whether LGBTQ or GQ, lost is lost…and the proclamation of the Gospel is what God uses and delights in to save the lost. Why? Because in the Gospel, Christ is the hero and Savior of all of man’s demise. Christ suffered greatly in order to be given this name that is above all other names. Jesus, the name that saves. What a glorious name. The purpose of the Gospel is to proclaim joyfully and confidently how Christ has come to reconcile man back to God through His atoning death on the cross (bearing the penalty of our sin and rebellion against God) and through His victory of rising from the dead (giving everyone who hopes in Him the confidence that death and condemnation will no longer touch them and they will live eternally in the presence of the living God.) Who is the hero when this message is shared? Jesus. There is no other name under Heaven by which men must be saved. This message, this simple message, is what God uses in the most miraculous and powerful ways to bring a rebellious wayward sinner to His knees in a glorious God produced demonstration of faith and repentance. We dare not change or alter such a message!
This message points to Christ for all. It does not matter where a person is coming from. The Gospel saves the sinner. Period. We don’t have to tailor a message that is specific to the LGBTQ community. All who are not yet born of God in that community are lost rebellious sinners who stand separated from God and under His just judgment. Not because the men dress like women or because the women are in relationship with one another, but because they have sinned against a holy God by living their lives without seeking to honor Him or submit to Him. In the same way, we don’t have to tailor a message that is specific to the GQ guys who pride themselves in their looks, their women, and their lucrative careers. All who identify with this lifestyle who have not been born of God are lost, separated from God’s grace, and under His just condemnation…just like the rebellious man, woman, or transgender in the LGBTQ community. You see, there is no difference. Just like Scripture clearly tells us in Romans 3:23 “For all have sinned and have fallen short of the glory of God.”
Do you feel the need to alter the Gospel when talking to a house mom who is lost? No. Do we feel the need to alter the Gospel when talking with a college athlete who is lost? No. Then why do we get filled with such great fear when it comes to bringing the message of the Gospel to those in the LGBTQ community? Why do we feel the need to have to alter the message and tailor it in such a specific way that it has much more “potential” to really reach the heart? The simple Gospel message, proclaimed and lived out, is what brings all the “potential” needed.
Last week, I met a guy and struck up conversation with him in hopes that the door would open to share the Gospel. It turns out, the guy said he was homosexual. Then, the guy asks me out of the blue “What does your tattoo mean?” (I have 2 tattoos on my wrists, one is the Scripture in Deut.6:5 in Hebrew that states “You shall love the Lord your God” and the other is the Alpha and Omega Greek letters that signify Jesus as the first and the last.) Of course, when he asked me, I knew that the Lord was answering my prayer and opening the door for me to share the Gospel. As I explained what the scripture meant and that it was the truth that I have come to live by, he then asked me how it was that I came to know the truth. Open door! And the next 30 minutes were spent with me sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ with a homosexual man sitting in the front seat of my car.
How did I share the Gospel? The same way that the Apostles Paul, and Peter, and John, shared the Gospel with the masses in the New Testament. The same way that my best friend shared it with me 25 years ago. Did I bring up the fact that he was homosexual and that meant something different in terms of him being offered salvation? Nope. But the fact is that he himself brought it up and shared how there have been many Christians who have shunned him because he is openly gay. Did I shy away from talking about the sin of homosexuality in the Bible? No. I told him what the Bible says about God’s intended design for man and woman. I told him that the Bible does say that homosexuality is a sin. But I did not in any way isolate that sin above any other sin that keeps man under God’s just judgment. I was not talking about the fact that he was under God’s judgment because he is a homosexual. I was simply talking about him being under God’s just judgment because he has sinned and has rebelled against God, choosing to do whatever he wants to do, but that God loved Him so much that He sent His Son Jesus Christ to pay the penalty for his sins, and that through trusting in the finished work of Christ, he could be forgiven and brought near to God for eternity. That’s the Gospel. I did not need to condemn his homosexual lifestyle. He was already condemned long before he decided he was gay. Being gay will not keep him out of Heaven. Not surrendering his life to the lordship of Jesus Christ will.
I wish I could tell you that he repented right then and there and trusted in Christ, but he did not. But he did truly thank me for sharing such truth with him and said that he will take my advice and start reading the book of John in the Bible.
Here’s another truth to remember. When God saves a sinner, they are usually a mess. But God does not condemn them any longer for their mess. Christ paid the price for their mess. Christ already took the judgment for their mess. But now, the Holy Spirit is living in them, and He begins to sanctify them day by day and lead them to look more like Jesus. The sin of homosexuality is one of the many sins that the Spirit will address in His perfect time, just like the sin of pride, lust, self-righteousness, anger, etc. The man or woman truly born of God will fall under conviction when the Holy Spirit reveals truth to them through their conscience and through the reading and study of the Word of God. It is not our mission to convince someone to leave their sin of homosexuality, or alcohol, or drugs. It is our mission to bring them to an awareness of the saving Gospel of Jesus Christ. The rest we must gladly leave in the hands of the Lord.
So, the focus in sharing the Gospel with someone in the LGBTQ community is the same as it is for sharing the Gospel with Moms in the homeschool community. We present that man’s sin has separated themselves from God and stand under His just judgement, but that God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him will not perish, but have eternal life. That is the best news anyone can share. Why would we feel the need to alter such a life-saving message that can reach anybody anytime anywhere.
“For I am not ashamed of the Gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation for anyone who believes.”