As the world gears up to celebrate Pride Month we take some time to consider what the Bible has to say about such matters.
If there was a modern movement which represented the opposite to what the Bible teaches, it might be the movement known as Pride. Pride is all about celebrating unfettered freedom to follow ones desires and to do what one wants. It is closely associated with the LGBTQ+ ideology which has steadily been growing in influence in the Western World over the last 15 years.
Pride Month is celebrated in Western cities in June. It’s dedicated to celebration and commemoration of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) pride. The rainbow flag has become a symbol of this movement and many marches and celebrations are planned with Schools and Corporations getting on the bandwagon.
Of course what unbelievers do is entirely up to them. God, at this current time, has allowed freedom of choice and people can choose to follow Him ways or not. However what should a Bible believer’s mindset be to Pride Month?
The Bible and Pride
Before we even get into the lifestyles and practices associated with Pride Month the notion of celebrating human pride immediately is at odds with Biblical thinking.
The Bible tells us that human pride needs to be abased. That we need to humble ourselves and accept God’s ways and not human ways as a guide for life. Because we do not naturally think like God and because His ways are far above our ways (Isa 55:8-9), we learn that we can only find out about His ways through His word, the Bible. God’s word is described as light which shines a light onto our path and gives us understanding (Psa 119:105+130). We read in the Bible that God is seeking those who are “poor and of a contrite spirit”, willing to humble themselves and tremble at His awesome word (Isaiah 66:2).
The opposite of this is wordly human pride which stands in opposition to God’s ways.
We read in 1 John 2:16 “All that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.”
Jesus teaches us that “Out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, Thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness: All these evil things come from within, and defile the man” Mark 7:21-22.
The ideology connected with the LGBTQ+ acronym is also at odds with Biblical teaching. One of the core ideas is that if a person chooses to be identified by one of the letters which stand for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans or Queer, then they are that and this should be accepted and celebrated. They should be free to express who they are and indulge in whatever acts gratify them freely. They should not have to change anything about what they feel.
The teaching of the Bible though is that humans should seek to control their natural impulses. The Bible calls on us to change instinctive behaviours and reflect God’s word. A believer is called upon to “mortify” or put to death, impulses which are not in accordance with God’s ways (Col 3:5).
The concept of restricting human impulses and disciplining oneself is not a popular message. Nonetheless the believer of the Bible realises that this is essential to pleasing God.
The rejection of Biblical truth
Pride Month is indeed one example of a culture which, for the last 50 years, has turned its back on God’s ways. For 2000 years society has loosely had a Biblical foundation which gave it structure and the ability for families to thrive. Sadly this is now under attack and post-modern chaos is becoming the norm which does not lead to contentment. Nothing is certain. There are infinite possibilities and uncertainties.
This confusion has caused some to believe that their gender is simply a social construct and that this can be changed - despite the facts of biology. The Biblical role of the sexes is considered old-fashioned, bigoted and to be rejected.
Having rejected the Bible’s definition of what a “good” person is like, society has filled the God shaped hole with the narrative of oppressed vs oppressor and there the virtuous person has to champion so called oppressed minority groups in order to be virtuous. Which is why we see so much of this “virtue signalling” going on around us.
The idea is to overthrow those who are considered oppressors. Extremists therefore do not tolerate Biblical teaching - nor those who hold to it. They reject the notions of normality which have been held for thousands of years, wishing to redefine and reconfigure language and meaning to suit their ends.
But the call of the Bible is not to follow the spirit of the age. The believer is called to “be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.” Romans 12:2
One of the core drivers of Pride Month is sexual identity. It’s a celebration of the impulses of people who have same-sex attraction.
Much could be said about this from a Biblical perspective. However we will limit our comments to simply think about how God has designed acceptable sexuality in His word the Bible.
We are careful to say at this point that same sex attraction in itself is not a sin. It’s in the practicing of sexual relations outside of Biblically defined marriage which is (James 1:15). When sexual activity takes place outside of Biblically defined marriage this is termed fornication or, if the person is married and they are begin unfaithful, adultery in the Bible.
The only divinely acceptable place for sexual intercourse is in the marriage relationship and this is defined by God’s word as being between one man and one woman who have vowed themselves to each other. This is defined in the creation record in Genesis 2:4 which states after Eve was created for Adam “Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife.”
This shows that marriage was designed to be at the heart of a new family household and this can only take place between a man and a woman. This is quoted and endorsed later in the Bible by the apostle Paul (Ephesians 5:31) and by the Lord Jesus Christ himself (Matthew 19:5). It is from this union children and families spring forth.
Therefore “gay marriage” or “same sex marriage” is impossible from a Biblical perspective. Any sexual activity outside of the Biblically defined marriage relationship is forbidden and sinful - be that heterosexual or homosexual.
A new identity
So - far from championing the labels of LGBTQ+ the Bible calls for believers to renounce their former lustful lifestyles and identify themselves with the son of God, Jesus Christ. He resisted sin in all its forms. We read he was tempted in all points yet he did not sin (Hebrews 4:15). He is the example for us to follow (1 Peter 2:21)
The following was written by inspiration of God to the believers at Corinth in the 1st Century:
“Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate (some versions translate this as “homosexual”), nor abusers of themselves with mankind, Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.” 1Cor 6:9
The Bible clearly states then that lifestyles that break the ideal of marriage will cause the practicers to not have a place in God’s kingdom. Therefore it would be unloving for us to encourage such ways of life. Instead we must all renounce our former identities - in whatever way they were incompatible with the Christian lifestyle before - and embrace a new life in Christ.
We are not of this world
So for these reasons, as the world celebrates Pride Month we will decline to be involved, knowing that we should obey God rather than men (Act 5:29). If asked we will point out that the Bible offers a vastly different message and framework for life than the one the world promotes at this time.
Should we find our beliefs at odds with our society and find society is unable to tolerate our faith then we take comfort in the words of Christ who has taught us in John 15:19 that “If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you.”
We await a new age when God’s will will be done on on the earth (Matt 6:10) and when God’s glory will fill this earth (Num 14:21).
Join us again next week God willing as we wait and watch the signs of the times that herald the return of Messiah and his new Kingdom age.