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by J. Grant Swank, Jr., Pastor
10 May 2003

Is it being judgmental to state that homosexuality is a sin?

"Homosexual activity is a sin!" someone says.

The retort: "Oh, don't say that. You’re being judgmental."

Being so-called "judgmental" is quite politically incorrect today. It runs
against the moral relativity of the culture.

On the surface, not being "judgmental" appears exceptionally civil, kind
and compassionate. That is why many so-called religious persons are into
being politically correct. These persons are theologically liberal, not
biblically sound individuals.

Theological liberals buy into whatever is politically correct in whatever
time and place. Theological conservatives are moored in divine revelation.

"Being judgmental" today is interpreted by liberals as expressing unkindly
some practice or belief to be right or wrong. However, what the liberals do
not understand is that conservatives are not being judgmental but rightly

Because the theologically conservative individual uses Scripture for
formulating his moral code, he takes, for instance, the statements of Jesus
most seriously.

When it comes to judging others, Jesus said, "Judge not, that you be not

By that, Jesus meant that no mortal has the divine right to pronounce an
eternal judgment of heaven or hell upon another mortal's eternal destiny.
There are no reasonable theological conservatives who would dare that. They
know that the same Scripture states that only God sees a person's heart;
God alone then can judge a soul to its eternal state.

However, Jesus did state that His followers can analyze another's lifestyle
to discern whether its practices are right or wrong, good or bad, righteous
or evil. Jesus told His disciples that they could look upon another's life
tree to discern whether the fruit was proper or unfit.

Therein lies the crux of the matter: there is a significant difference
between judging a soul to eternal destiny and analyzing a lifestyle as to
whether it lines up with Scripture's moral code.

Therefore, when a person says that homosexual activity is sin, he is
reflecting the moral code of Scripture. That is allowed. If the
theologically liberal individuals state otherwise, they are incorrect
according to God's Word.

Being analytical also involves using one's reasoning powers to come to a
truth. For instance, Jerry Falwell stated that Islam is not a religion of
peace. That is truth. For that, he was accused by liberals of being
judgmental -- unkind, discourteous, rude, brash. With that reaction from
the culture, Falwell backpedaled. Sad.

Falwell should have held his logical ground on his truth statement for his
statement is accurate according to the Koran. However, social pressures
caused him to renege. Sad.

It would have been hoped that Falwell would have kept to his truth position
in the face of liberal opposition. Falwell spoke rightly. Falwell spoke
reality. For that, he was not judgmental in the eyes of God but instead was
reasonably analytical.

There is a social price to pay for those who discern life situations
according to Scripture. Liberals despise that approach for they champion
moral relativity. Biblical conservatives champion deity's absolutes.

In summation, biblical conservatives do not exist for the approval of a
relativistic society but the smile of God. For that, they may be labeled
judgmental but in fact they are being analytical -- according to Scripture.

Joseph Grant Swank, Jr., is the Pastor of New Hope Church in Windham, ME.  He is a a graduate of an accredited college (BA) and seminary (M Div) with graduate work at Harvard Divinity School.  Pastor Swank has been married for 41 years and he has 3 adult children.  He is the author of 5 books and over 2000 articles in various Protestant and Catholic magazines, journals and newspapers. He writes a weekly religion column for PORTLAND PRESS HERALD newspaper, Portland ME.  His columns have appeared on,,,,,,,,, among others.

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