Response to CARM: Homosexuality

25 Aug

I have recently been pointed to a website called Christian Apologetics & Research Ministry as an excellent location to learn LDS doctrine. On this website they have many pages dedicated to what they call exposing the truth of Mormonism. Most of what they present is well thought out, and they use many quotes and documents to support it. When they are simply giving a list of quotes they don’t do too bad. When they try to interpret those quotes and explain doctrine they fail almost completely. So I am starting a new series in which I will address a selection of pages from that website.

The page I will address here is titled “The Mormon Church and homosexuality.” I have to say it was a new one for me. So far I have only read and heard people criticize the church for being too hard on homosexuals. However, the author here doesn’t think we are hard enough.

The author gives the church credit for opposing same-sex marriage, but they raise issues on the question of homosexual attraction. He rightly quotes the leaders in saying “The Church distinguishes between same-sex attraction and behavior.” That we maintain “that feelings and inclinations toward the same sex are not inherently sinful.” (Same-Gender Attraction)

While applauding the kindness and sensitivity he does say that we missed the mark with this. As he puts it “homosexual attraction is not sinful until it is acted upon.” The author than speak about lust and then tells us “God judges the heart–not just the action.”

Right now I will agree with this. God will judge our thoughts, but what will he judge? The author quotes Matthew 5: 28 “but I say to you, that whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart.” He quotes some other verses as well, but the basic idea of the claim is that any thought that enters the mind which is in line with sinful action is also a sin.

Let us consider the lusting after a woman that Christ was talking about. To lust is to have a strong longing or desire for someone in a sexual way. So, the question we must ask is this: Is it possible to experience attraction towards another person without having the accompanying desire for them?

The answer to this question is obvious. Of course it is. The definition of attraction is a person or thing that draws, attracts, allures, or entices.

A man can walk down the street and pass an extremely beautiful woman towards whom he experiences a moment of attraction and possibly even physical arousal. However, he can go on his way and never think of her again, and thus he has never experienced any sexual desire for her, and thus is not guilty of lusting after her.

In the same manner a person can experience and feel attraction to those of the same sex; however, until they desire to act on those feelings then they have committed no sin.

God will judge the heart, and the heart that turns from lusts will be justified, even if it has faced the trails of attractions that are unlawful and unnatural.

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