The Boys' Growing Up in the Lord

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Question

I am a straight 18 year old Christian who loves God and wants nothing more than to be on the right path, and be the proper Christian I know I can be. I grew up respecting females, much like chivalry, I'd say. So when I discovered porn, I hated seeing woman like that, and eventually turned to gay porn for masturbation because the way I saw woman wasn't the way I saw men.

I am a very curious person who seeks knowledge in the world around him, but sometimes that knowledge can hurt me spiritually. After discovering gay porn, my mind wondered to thoughts that later became deeds -- sin. I have given and received oral, given and received hand jobs and kissed a friend of mine who is gay out of curiosity a few times, but that is it, nothing more.

I actually hated myself afterward. Even in masturbation I hated the action afterward. I knew and know that it was wrong, yet I did it, more than once. I always attributed that to being young and horny, but it's not. I can't any more, it's just wrong. I want to be right with God and to be a better Christian, a model Christian. I believed it to be wrong and I know it is. I feel guilty, unclean and a failure in God's eyes. I want nothing more than to seek forgiveness, but I am having trouble finding it. I pray and beg and try to come to terms with this, but nothing.

I know I am straight, because I have always look toward girls, and one day I seek the right Christian girl whom I can live the rest of my life with who shares my love for God. I want kids one day and a Christian family, and I envision myself a better Christian in the future than I am now.

I am struggling now with what I have done, and the worst part is knowing that I did it and that I knew it was wrong. I gave into temptation and let the devil swoop me away, further away from God and His commandments. I snapped out of this due to the fear of STD's and other scary health risks. I want to be right. I have never told anyone of this and this is a really big thing for me to do -- to ask for help. I truly love God for He has blessed me, and I feel like I am not repaying Him the glory He deserves for those many blessings.

I have never drank, smoked, done anything illegal or sinful other than this, which for me eats away at my spiritually. How do I find forgiveness in this? I have read many of your threads to others but felt the need to write in and get direct help. There is a passage I read from another thread that says, temptation leads to sin and sin leads to multiple sinning which leads to death. I want life, I want God and I want forgiveness. I just don't know where in the word of God to search for it. Can I get any advice on this topic? Any passages for me to read? What should I pray for? How to I put this behind me and show God that I choose Him above this sin? It would really reassure me.

Thank you.


Answer

"This is the message which we have heard from Him and declare to you, that God is light and in Him is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin. If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us. My little children, these things I write to you, so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous" (I John 1:5-2:1).

There is a basic fact that is tough to face: everyone sins at various points in their lives. This is not to excuse the sins, but people don't live sin free lives, "for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God" (Romans 3:23).

I don't like how society portrays homosexuality these days. It is a sin, no different than if guy had sex with his girlfriend; yet, people usually understand that they can repent of fornication but they are convinced that homosexuality is ingrained in a person. The claim is provably false because there are former homosexuals and there are guys who are bisexual. In the Bible, after stating that you cannot continue practicing sin and reach heaven, Paul stated: "Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God" (I Corinthians 6:9-11). "Such were some of you" means that there were former homosexuals in the church at Corinth. This also affirmed in modern studies:

"Is homosexuality biologically programmed from birth, or is it socially and psychologically induced? There is clearly no one answer that accounts for all homosexuals. What can be said for certain is that some homosexuals were started along that path in early childhood, and that most homosexuals, having had sex with both sexes, have chosen homosexuality along with or in preference to heterosexuality.

"We can say "chosen" because the vast majority of gay men have had intercourse with women. As a four-year study of 128 gay men by a UCLA professor of psychology revealed, 'More than 92 percent of the gay men had dated a woman at some time, two-thirds had sexual intercourse with a woman.'" [Dennis Prager, "Judaism's Sexual Revolution: Why Judaism Rejected Homosexuality"].

What you also need to keep in mind is that you aren't the first or last to go through this. "No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man" (I Corinthians 10:13). You don't hear it often because, like you, most guys who have fallen to homosexuality don't like to admit it. I will tell you that I have had similar stories told to me on a number of occasions.

You made great strides in facing your sin. You are willing to admit that you chose to have sex with a guy. But that means you can also end that same choice. What you did does not mark you for life -- unless you let it. That you feel guilty for having given into sin is actually a good thing. It is people who feel no guilt over sin who are hard to convince to change. It isn't this one particular sin that should give you pains of guilt when you think of it -- every sin should equally bother you. The guilt is the reminder from our conscience that we ought not repeat our sins.

Changing doesn't mean the temptation to sin again will go away. However, temptations can be rejected.

In regards to salvation from sin, while I know you referred to yourself as a Christian, I find there are far too many people claim Christianity without actually obeying what the Lord said is needed to become a Christian. Therefore, I would like you to read over: What Must I Do to be Saved? If there is something lacking in your past in this regard, the first priority is to correct it. If you are fully a Christian, then the all God asks of you is to repent (change) (II Corinthians 7:10-11) and admit your sins to Him in your prayers (I John 1:9).

How can I know for certain that God has forgiven me? I have heard many different answers in life, but never really understood. I know He loves me; otherwise, He would have never sent His Son up on the cross to die for my sin, and certainly because He has blessed me with everything. But how do I know I have fully repented and that He has forgiven me? In repentance do you get washed of the sin completely in a matter of speaking or does it stay with you like a stain to be judge upon later? I like clarification, I know some of these already have answers I should know and I do, but I like to know I have the right answer.

Returning to what John stated, "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness" (I John 1:9). God is faithful. "Faithful" means that He can be absolutely trusted to keep what He said He would do. "For this reason I also suffer these things; nevertheless I am not ashamed, for I know whom I have believed and am persuaded that He is able to keep what I have committed to Him until that Day" (II Timothy 1:12). Thus, it is a measure of faith that you have in God. Do you accept that God never lies? If so, then you know that He forgives Christians who have turned from their sins (II Corinthians 7:10-11) and admit that they sinned.

You've repented when you have changed your mind about whether a sin is acceptable and when you have changed your behavior. You've done both of these things. Even if you might slip up in the future, the Christian's attitude is to get back up, dust himself off and keep on fighting sin. It is never acceptable to a Christian to continue in sin. "You know that He appeared in order to take away sins; and in Him there is no sin. No one who abides in Him sins; no one who sins has seen Him or knows Him. Little children, make sure no one deceives you; the one who practices righteousness is righteous, just as He is righteous; the one who practices sin is of the devil; for the devil has sinned from the beginning. The Son of God appeared for this purpose, to destroy the works of the devil. No one who is born of God practices sin, because His seed abides in him; and he cannot sin, because he is born of God. By this the children of God and the children of the devil are obvious: anyone who does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor the one who does not love his brother" (I John 3:5-10). Thus, you have not repented if you continue to make a practice of sinning. But a Christian seeks not to make a habit of sin.

Mr. Hamilton,

I want to thank you for writing me and sending me scripture to read. I understand now what I have done and what I need to do to change. I need to be righteous, and fight temptation. Take this as a massive learning experience and grow from it.

I truly do appreciate your responses, and I'm beginning to understand. I have always tried my upmost best to live and lead a Christian lifestyle, but there has always been a disconnect, and the weakness to temptation that has prevented me from reaching my goal of being a Christian in the true meaning. Since that first email I have felt a shift and a connection beginning to build, my faith strengthening.

Anyway, I just want to say thank you, and that your responses are truly helpful, and a blessing.