Greg: A Personal Plea

My name is Greg, and I am a Seventh-day Adventist living in California. Most of my formative education has been through the Adventist Church—from elementary school through university. My parents divorced when I was 9, so spending time at Dad’s house filled with stacks of pornography and parties was contrasted in Mom’s house where we read Uncle Arthur’s Bedtime Stories. I thank the Lord that my grandparents and a loving church family provided a moral compass for me during that time. Sadly, however, there were many challenges.

In my 7th grade health class, I was told by my Christian teacher that masturbation was normal and to enjoy exploring my body. At 16, I lost my virginity, but I already had many years of masturbation and sexual exploration. I thought I was “prepared” for sex as my entire 9th grade class had been taught in sex education class how to use a condom. I was told by my Bible teacher that homosexuality was a normal, naturally occurring thing. So, soon after my first sexual experience with a girl, I had a sexual affair with an older male teenager. I was still 16.

A year later, AIDS was becoming more prevalent and out of fear I stayed quiet about myself for years. I was an excellent student and was accepted into a well-known Christian medical school.

Class Discussion

One day it was announced that a special speaker would address the class on sepsis techniques when encountering patients with HIV. Instead, the discussion dwelt on homosexuality, its normality, and that those with same-sex attraction should be wholly welcomed both in society and the Church.

Emboldened by the tenured professor who taught the class, I asked to speak to her in private. We met at her house where she introduced me to her wife. She encouraged me to “come out of the closet” and be my “authentic self.” She introduced me to the university’s head student mental health counselor and the head collegiate pastor who both encouraged and almost prodded, telling me that I must stop “living a lie” and accept that I’m gay.

Warmly Welcomed

After graduating, I was warmly welcomed into the gay community. I submerged myself in everything LGBTQ+ and thought I had found true happiness. Instead, I was entangled in one broken relationship after another. This is the “normal” pattern with many gay men; we date by finding out first if sexual compatibility is there, and then develop the interpersonal relationship after that—a little known, but never discussed secret in the gay community.

Heterosexual dating often seems quite different, although there are some who also experience changing partners and broken relationships. Currently pro-LGBTQ+ groups wish the Church would claim that a sexual relationship between two men in love is approved by God and acceptable. What they won’t tell you is that there are almost endless sexual encounters needed to find “Mr. Right” with the required sexual compatibility, and mutually shared sexual desires. Even today, no pro-LGBTQ+ discussion in Church circles even broach this functional fact.

A Fierce LGBTQ+ Apologist

Living in the largest gay community in the United States allowed me to hook up with all the sexual-social battles affecting our society. I became a fierce pro-LGBTQ+ apologist and digested practically every theological book, pamphlet, and argument that normalized same-sex attraction.

I knew all the arguments and I could talk down any Scripture with a “that’s a mistranslation,” or “that pertains to idol worship” comeback. The theological mislabeling of “you were made in God’s image just as you are” were the lying, mesmerizing mantra of reassurance for the conflicted LGBTQ+ soul. Anyone who disagreed with me was a “hater” to be hounded and shunned.

“This was our normal”

Spiritually, I was feeding at the trough of a well-loved church—a place where gay married couples serve on the church board and are well integrated into its functions. Although no gay marriages were performed there, nearly the entire church attended a same-sex couple marriage ceremony. One Sabbath afternoon, the church hosted a gay pride parade.

During these years I even served on the board of an “Adventist” gay affirming organization, where I started a college campus outreach program, handled teary, midnight calls from distraught kids, and socially scuttled the organization’s members to restaurants after church and later to bars and clubs on Saturday night. This wasn’t unusual; this was our “normal.”

Despite the “loving” and fully accepting church environs “the pink pews” dwindled in numbers despite that church’s aggressive outreach and reputation. I fell out, too, and my attendance became infrequent. I didn’t need to hear the same drum beat every sermon; after all I was living the LGBTQ+ dream. There was no lasting spiritual food served in that church that proudly waved a banner of rainbow victimization and the delusion of “you can be your authentic self.”

God Did Not Give Up

I praise God Almighty for not giving up on me. I was a poster boy and mouthpiece for the pro-LGBTQ+ forces in our church, yet through all that the Holy Spirit continued to work on my heart, even in my deep sexual confusion.

One day, after watching a video ad by a gay-affirming group proclaiming God’s acceptance for and the call to celebrate “Bisexuality week,” I asked myself, “How exactly do you ‘celebrate’ bisexual attraction?” Knowing the obvious answer was to simply engage in multiple sexual partners, a thought quickly came into my mind: “There’s no sex outside of heterosexual marriage; everything else is fornication and sin.” I had to sit down. I had just answered the obvious—and had just admitted to myself how wrong I knew I was.

The years of believing the rainbow lies that I was “born this way” now fully collapsed and I was staring down my entire life of placating the flesh. I had just admitted it to myself and none of the former arguments had any gravity now.

“Christ was calling me”

This time, instead of seeking soothing but deceptive words from my church community (even my former pastor told me that by publicly proclaiming I was leaving my past, I would push kids into suicide), I sought solace in Christ instead. I was scared, but knew Christ was calling me to be born again.

I want to thank my new church home, who welcomed me with open arms. They genuinely walk with me as the Holy Spirit now untangles the years of self-inflicted damage and the new discovery of sexual purity, denial of my carnal self, and embracing what it truly means to surrender to Jesus. Even my happy, legal marriage with another man crumbled—not by conflict, but by exposure for what it was. Amazingly, even my partner saw Jesus in my heart and repented. He is now a member of God’s church and has left the LGBTQ+ world as well!

Someday, I dream of standing in front of our entire church to share my testimony of redemption and salvation. I want to talk with every hurting soul and pray with every broken heart. I was in the pink trenches religiously, politically, and socially in every way; I know the conflict. I ran the pro-LGBTQ+ organizations, I celebrated the rainbow lifestyle in luxury, and can honestly proclaim its dead-end results.

I was never abused as a kid. I have no drug or alcohol addictions. I was never assaulted by “change ministries.” I marched in protests and volunteered regularly for “LGBTQ+ equality” events and did my time as a good citizen of West Hollywood, California. I was there. I believed it, I identified by and through it, and I wore its label with proud rainbow colors.

Yet, Christ rescued me from that charade. He does care. He does change hearts. He does call the soul suffering from the lies of same-sex attraction to His loving embrace.

A Personal Plea

I also beg to caution my beloved church.

I have personally witnessed what happens when a church dives into the rainbow pool; it spiritually dies.

So Church, stand up and heal the breach. Love and walk with others suffering from same-sex attraction (yes, it is suffering). Pray WITH them, not just for them. But never believe the web of deceptions spun for entrapment. There is no “sexual orientation” or Kinsey scale sexual proclivities in Scripture. None of this is God-approved, no matter how emotionally the argument is packaged in hurt and victimization. And the church needs to be honest about this; but this takes a long look in the spiritual mirror from EVERY member, gay or straight, and to repent from the dalliances of sexual immorality—ALL immorality.

Greg is a Seventh-day Adventist physician currently practicing in the United States.

Images: Freepik

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