Monday, May 6, 2013

Words of Comfort: Hate Speech?

These are difficult times for the average preacher. If we warn of Hell or speak of the Bible’s stance on homosexuality, we are quickly accused of hate speech. But there are ways that you and I can talk about the reality of Hell and reach homosexuals with the gospel, and have it make sense.

One reason preachers avoid speaking of Hell isn’t because they don’t believe in it. It’s because they misunderstand the purpose of the moral Law (the Ten Commandments). God’s Law shows us that the One we must face on Judgment Day is morally perfect, and that He considers lust to be adultery (see Matthew 5:27-28) and hatred to be murder (see 1 John 3:15). It is because of this perfect righteousness that He abhors evil and warns that a day of ultimate and perfect justice is coming. Any human judge who is good must see that justice is done, and God’s goodness will see to it that ultimate justice will be satisfied. Murderers, rapists, thieves, liars, fornicators, adulterers, etc., will get what is due to them.

When preachers don’t use the Law to show God’s absolute righteousness, and instead talk of His love and kindess, adding “But He will send you to Hell if you don’t trust in Jesus” makes no sense. It paints God as a vengeful tyrant. So any such talk is avoided.

Illustration: [Source]