|Is God good to gays?|
It is easier to say that God is good when you have everything, partner, a family, good health, children, a large house, a good car, and a career. We go to church with the shouts of hallelujah, as we sing along to the sounds of the band playing our favourite Hillsongs or traditional hymn. When we are old, we would look back, declaring that we have achieved much. Look at our service to God, be-it to extend the Kingdom of God or in the areas of social justice. We could be well blessed with a house full of children and grandchildren. All seems lost because we were gay.
The young people queuing for hours at CHC and NCC, they too have their future looking bright. A good education, a loving boyfriend and girlfriend, they look forward to a home, a family and a good career where they make it in life. Sure God is there, and they praised God because life is good to them. Not all are rich or have a good education we object, but society doesn’t blame or condemn you if you were poor, or didn’t do well at school, or just have a little opportunity in life. But when it comes to being gay, our society, family, community and religion rejects and condemns us.
We are left alone, our relationships not recognised by society, condemned as sinners by the church, and needing to hide our true self. Our future also looks bleak, who would support us as we may not have children and grandchildren when we die to leave our heritage and mark on earth. Even our current boyfriend/girlfriend may not last through the year! Gay relationships are often said to be fluid.
Gays were known as the natural Eunuchs in Jesus’ time – born as such from the mother’s womb in contrast to those made as such by men, or chose to be castrated for religious worship of demonic pagan faiths. (Mat 19:12). In Isaiah 56:4, the prophet went to the root of the matter, when talking about the people coming to the God of Israel through Jesus Christ. Here God was making a distinction not whether one is American or Asian etc, but there were only three groups of people – the Jews, The Gentiles who chose to associate themselves with God, and the Eunuchs. Why did God mentioned Eunuchs who were despised, because He was talking about the natural Eunuchs – the gay community many thousands of years later.
The root of the matter is our heritage and legacy that we will be leaving behind. It is not living that only concerns us, but what will be leave behind. Here the grace and the goodness of God reached out to the Eunuchs. Many gays would not have a family or legacy to leave behind! We have no name to leave behind and soon our names will no longer be remembered because we have no descendants. We have no name either in the land of the living (for we have to hide our faces and true selves), neither would we have a name in the land of the dead when people look back to their family history.
God made an amazing promise to the Eunuchs, to the Gay community. The Christian Right claim that Gays are insisting on special rights – which is partially true because God is giving us a special promise that He didn’t give to the Jews nor the Gentiles in general. The promise in Isa 56:4 is that when we seek God and associate ourselves with the God of Israel which is ultimately personified in Christ Jesus, His death and resurrection to be our Lord and Saviour, God is going to give us a better name than the rest in the household of God. It is a special name of honor by God's grace since we have been the most despised.
Although, we would have no name in this world, having to hide our faces in the land of the living, and leaving no children and grandchildren as a legacy, God is going to give us a name, an everlasting name that will not be cut off – ie that will be remembered! People will remember us both in heaven and on earth! Whilst the lineage of a family line may end, our names will be everlasting (Is 56:5) – with no end when we choose God in our lives. It speaks of a special place of favour and blessings, and a remembrance by God. Although, our family, our Christian religious faith and society may reject us, God not only accepts us but gives us a place of special privilege and honour in the heavenly household of God.
The Word of God is “yea”, and “Amen”, and He has given the Gay community a name in the most amazing of places. The Christian Right worships the King James Bible as God’s ordained word for four hundred years. Ironically, the King James Bible was commissioned by a flaming gay queen – King James himself. For two hundred years, the writings of William Shakespeare brought joy to many, yet little did they know he was also Gay. Their names would be everlasting and not forgotten as promised by God. Two early movers of the Jesus Movement which impacted the Charismatic Christian movement in America and later in Malaysia/Singapore were Marsha Stevens who wrote “For those tears I died”, and Lonnie Frisbee who sparked the rise of Calvary Chapel and later Wineyard movement.
The GLBT churches have tried to make the gay affirmative churches, the churches of their childhood perhaps with the only difference being gay affirmative. Others have wanted these churches to being something new to the Christian faith as a whole – to bring it to the edge of social justice and queer theology which is also good. We start with reconciling our faith with our sexuality, perhaps some go beyond to embrace a queer theology of breaking down social structures/norms, and learning to love ourselves again and seeing others and humanity as special beings of God’s creation to be loved and treasured. God has much more in mind.
Our call as Gay Christians goes far beyond, further than reconciling our faith and sexuality, beyond able to accept and love ourselves as truly a wonderful and beautiful creation of God. If we end here, we have nothing much to live for. The tears that we cried would all be in vain. We have got nothing in our lives – no wife/husband, no children, no grandchildren, our name despised by society, friends, and the church. Even our own family rejects us, and we have suffered so much until there are no more tears to cry. We are thirsty yet given no water to drink.
Today Jesus is inviting us to come to the waters – to drink, to live, for He would not deny us. He understands and shares all our sorrows and pain. We may have grown up in a church, in a society and family that have never let us in. And as we look to the future, we are left with nothing, wondering for there is no hope and legacy that we will be leaving as compared to our straight counterparts. God is reminding us that Jesus also died for the tears we have cried to share our sorrows and sufferings. God understands. Come as you are. A new life of special blessings await.
God’s invitation to life, is an overcoming life. Instead of a name associated with pain, and rejection, God is giving us a new name today that is to be associated with blessings – for ourselves and for the wider community. Jesus is asking us today, to seek Him, to seek a communion with Him, and ask from God a new name, to ask for great blessings, honour and name. God is waiting to bless us because He has promised to give the GLBT community so rejected and ill-treated, a special place of blessing and anointing. Instead of emptiness, and a life filled with pain and losses, when we seek God and asked Him, He will bless us. Ask and you will receive.
He felt every tear drop, let it not be in vain. It’s time to ask and claim our blessings today for ourselves and for others. God will give you back your name and identity. It's time to start praying and asking and seeking for that new name! God is very good to the gay community. We are just starting to taste His goodness.
You said You'd come and
share all my sorrows,