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April 22, 2009

Bound to Happen: Christians Penalized in Workplace


Frankly, I'm surprised we don't hear more about Christians having their jobs threatened for not going along and getting along with every facet of political correctness. This story from Britain tells the tale.

It goes without saying that we live in a highly pluralistic age and that we must be civil and possessed of a Christ-like demeanor towards all those at work. But what hypocrisy abounds when everyone is taught to honor one group's beliefs while Christian perspectives are viewed with grave suspicion. 

The writer here puts the old saying well: "And yes, it’s quite possible to condemn someone’s actions and behaviors, but love the individual as you love yourself."

The truth is that sincere Christians oftentimes care more than the average person for gay people, whom we know to be made in God's image, even if they, like we, engage in behaviors that do not glorify their Creator. There is no hierarchy of sins in Christianity. Only sin. And while many gay people may honestly not know how it is that they arrived at their orientation, Christianity simply and consistently asserts that it is not something God intended for them.

Sincere Christians should not be homophobic, nor should they feel the need to sacrifice their understanding of God and human sexuality just to fit in. Rather, they should try, when possible, to show any gay co-worker that they see in them a fellow human being and rejoice in all the true gifts God has given them. A person is far more than his or her sexual orientation, important though it is, and on that basis there is much common ground to be found.

If only our workplaces would allow such candid, healing conversations to take place. But instead, we all tiptoe around one another, solving little.

(Image courtesy of LaVrai.com)

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I've worked where Christians tried to hide that they -were- Christians lest they be on the short list for being laid off. I was, and I never witnessed to anyone there or from there. It is common.

As to the idea that there is no hierarchy of sins in Christianity, that is simply an unbiblical statement. Any extended reading of the Bible would clear that up pretty effectively.

I don't know what Mr. Reed means by 'homophobic' a term of condemnation dreamt up by the homosexualist activist community. I do know that God sees it as an abomination that He hates. If He finds it loathsome, does that mean that Mr. Reed believes that God sins, or needs to receive enlightenment from Mr. Reed? We as Christians are to love what God loave - and to hate what God hates - for that is what it is to love God, the Bible tells us. G. K. Chesterton pointed out that it is the sick who do not have healthy rejections of loathing towards that which is loathsome.

Should we love the person made in the Image of God? Yes, most certainly, and we should share the Law and Gospel with them, as Jude says in Scripture: 23snatch others from the fire and save them; to others show mercy, mixed with fear—hating even the clothing stained by corrupted flesh..


Boy, Labrialumn has a way of reading things his own way, doesn't he?

When I said that there is no hierarchy of sins in Christianity, only sin, the meaning is clear to anyone except perhaps Labrialumn. While we can all agree that some sins hurt more than others, the point to such a statement is not to get caught up in another person's sins too much, as we have enough of our own sins to wrestle with, and for which we need forgiveness.

I think any clear reading of my post will leave the reader understanding that I don't ever expect a Christian to deny their beliefs regarding homosexuality. But should we imitate Christ with discernment when it comes to interacting with homosexuals, seeing in them the imago dei? Yes. How else will they be reached?

Labrialumn finally acknowledges this point at the end of his piece, but not before making it abundantly clear that he reserves the right to "hate what God hates."

That's great, and no, Labrialumn, I don't ever presume to tell God anything, as He knows all. But I will suggest to you that Jesus showed in the gospels numerous times that he interacted with people that, in his holiness, he must have found distasteful. But he saw something more to them than just the sin, as should we if we are his disciples.


Stephen wrote: "Boy, Labrialumn has a way of reading things his own way, doesn't he?"

Yes - my wife has all these toy teddy bears on the dresser in our bedroom, and I find myself sleeping with one eye open - if at all - these days.

You're saying, Stephen, that the wages of sin is death. Our dear friend lab is saying that there is a definite notion of greater sin (as Jesus said of Judas) and therefore lesser sin, with presumably greater and lesser consequences. So both of you are using a gloss for what is a complex issue. But also as he usually does, lab is again defining "compromise" as "coming to your senses and agreeing completely with me".

I just heard a preacher say on a podcast that those who most closely agree with one another on theology are the most likely to almost come to blows on particular points. Thanks, Stephen, for trying to correct this. But I'd still recommend sleeping with one eye open.

Rolley Haggard

Did you hear about the Cyclops who slept with one eye open? It dried out his contact len.

Sorry. It just kind of slipped out.

Jason Taylor

"I just heard a preacher say on a podcast that those who most closely agree with one another on theology are the most likely to almost come to blows on particular points"

There was a local "civil war" in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania over whether it was permissable to use electricity(or some such) in the 1960s. Fortunately Plain Folk don't kill each other over religion(or anything else)unlike us benighted Englishers.


Thanks, LeeQuod, and your response about the tendency some of us have to use "gloss" is well taken. ANY sin separates us from a holy God--that's the main point.

Jesus showed us that sometimes the only way to challenge someone to come out of their sin is to understand them better first. The woman at the well, the man born blind...Jesus meets people where they are, in the middle of their story, THEN challenges them. And He challenges them because He loves them, not because He hates them.

But does He hate that which prevents them from a relationship with Him? Oh yes. My point is about our approach. Jesus tells us over and over again that we have to love others beyond our natural capacities--hence the need for the Holy Spirit.


If there had been a story in the gospels of Jesus and the homosexual, how do you think it would have gone?

Jason Taylor

Nan, the homosexual would have repented his sins, like the publicans, and the harlots, and the thief on the cross.


I wasn't clear...I meant what would Jesus' response to the homosexual (okay, repentent or not) be?

Jason Taylor

Much the same as his response to the publicans, the harlots, and the thief, Nan.

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