Tag Archives: gay

A Most Interesting Video

On March 29, 2012, a most revealing 10 minute video was released by an unofficial group at Brigham Young University called USGA (Understanding Same-Gender Attraction). Some Latter-day Saints have found it to be alarming, taking it as a sign that the church is going to change their stance on gay unions, or use it as evidence that we need to embrace the homosexual lifestyle.

I invite you to watch the video without prejudice. Fill your heart with love for the people in the video and most importantly ask yourself line by line, what is right and what is wrong?

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God’s Law

So what is God’s law concerning homosexuality? First, I would just like to remind readers that I discuss this subject  based on a belief in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Again, I speak as a Mormon to Mormons. This is not the place to comment on the authenticity of the church. If you wish to do so, or to find out more about what we believe you can visit Mormon.org for more information. I assume that readers believe this to be the true church of God, restored to the earth by His hand, currently operating under His direction through modern day prophets.

God has spoken on the subject in ancient times, as well as in modern. True to the Faith is a gospel reference book that was published in 2004 by the church. It is compiled and approved by The First Presidency. It states simply “Like other violations of the law of chastity, homosexual activity is a serious sin. It is contrary to the purposes of human sexuality. It distorts loving relationships and prevents people from receiving the blessings that can be found in family life and the saving ordinances of the gospel” (True to the Faith, 30).

Romans 1:24-28 says the following concerning homosexuality:

24 Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves:

 25 Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.

 26 For this cause God agave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature:

 27 And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.

 28 And even as they did not like to retain God in theirknowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;

President Spencer W. Kimball simply said in his general conference address in October 1974  ”Every form of homosexuality is sin.”

There are hundreds of other scriptures, talks, and quotes that have been given to us by our prophets revealing God’s position on this matter.

We clearly see that there is a right and there is in fact a wrong concerning homosexuality. This right and wrong comes because God has given us law concerning it.

As such it is important that we know homosexuality is a sin. It cannot be viewed in any other way. It is when we discard this fact that we get in trouble with our testimonies and our faith in God.

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Homosexuality Compared to Heterosexual Immorality

I want to understand this concept of sin and how it relates to homosexuality. I have found in watching the film put out by USGA that there is a similar sin that helps us to understand what is happening in the lives of the people struggling with same-sex attraction. That sin is immorality. Homosexuality when acted upon falls under this umbrella so I will be more specific and and speak of heterosexual immorality in order to compare the two.

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Defining Yourself

The video begins with students who attend Brigham Young University saying “I am a Mormon and I am gay” or “I am a Mormon and I am a lesbian.” I have often found it strange that people with homosexual tendencies would define their entire self by a temptation that they find particularly difficult. What if I had made a terrible mistake with my boyfriend and from then on declared to the people around me that “I am a Mormon and I am a fornicator.” It would be silly to take that mistake and let it cover who I am. To do so suggests permanence which undermines the very core of our beliefs: the atonement of Jesus Christ. To believe that one cannot change is to discard belief in the atonement.

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Born This Way

There is an idea in the world that if you were born with certain tendencies that those tendencies are apart of you and should be embraced. This is a lie, whispered by the adversary.

Heterosexual members of the church should not be alarmed by such proclamations that same-sex feelings begin at a young age. Every member of the church felt attraction to sin when they were very young.

As a little girl I stood looking up at the rows of candy laid before me. Mom had moved on to the next aisle. It would be so easy to slip one of the delicious morsels into the pocket of my denim Osh-kosh overalls. As just a four or five year old girl I was overwhelmingly attracted to the sin of stealing. I was tempted. What if I had gone home and told my parents about the temptation that I had faced and they had said it was okay? They could have said that because I was so young and had obviously never been taught the feelings that I was having that I should embrace them. They could have told me that it was apart of who I am and that people needed to learn to accept that part of me. To do so would have shown a lack of love by my parents. Instead they  taught me that to steal is wrong and that I need to vigilantly work to overcome that temptation.

Some reading this may be thinking “but the temptation to steal feels very different than the temptation of same-gender attraction.” I am not pretending to be coy. I understand this. Lets use the example of a comparable temptation that heterosexuals face every day in their daily lives.

My Father tells of being a 13 year old scout. Their troop volunteered to pick up trash along the road up Milcreek canyon in Utah. Each scout was dropped off along the road about every 1/2 mile. They would then walk along with a garbage bag working their way up the roadside picking up any garbage they saw. As the young scout wend his way up the beautiful canyon, he came upon a girly calendar tossed along the side of the road. He quickly picked it up and put it in his trash bag. As he walked, the temptation to get back in his bag to view the pornography was so great that he had to tie the handle of the partially filled bag and leave it along the road for the leaders to come and pick up.

What if he had decided to begin viewing pornography because he recognized that he was attracted to it? He may have thought back to other little experiences where he had felt similar stirrings in his heart and recognized that he was born with this tendency. His parents had not taught it. In fact they had strongly taught against it. What if he had allowed this temptation to define him? Perhaps he would’ve told his friends that he was a porn guy – not even because he viewed porn but because he saw that it was attractive to him. He could’ve said that they needed to accept him for who he was.

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Fighting Temptation

It is possible that some who struggle with homosexual tendencies will fight it until the day they die.

Challenges that span a lifetime are not uncommon for members of the church. For example, there are those who suffer from chronic illness that will plague them their entire lives. For many, no amount of prayer or personal righteousness will relieve them of their challenge. Often it is God’s will that we suffer in this life, in order for us to become the person that God intends us to be.

I have a job that allows me the opportunity to sit in on an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting every week.  I realized early on that some of the members have been sober for 25 years or more. I asked one week why these people still attend meetings after so much time has passed. The response I received surprised me. I was told that it is because it is still hard. Some still fight the urge every day to resist taking a drink again. Yet, over and over you can hear them say how it’s been so worth it to continue fighting and how much better their life is as a result of overcoming.

The “It Gets Better” video offers a most unsettling quote: “Increased personal righteousness is reported by LGBT Mormons as the most common yet least effective method of attempting to change their sexual orientation.”

The implication is that being righteous is supposed to eliminate our challenges. This has never been the case. We know that hardship will always fall on the righteous as well as the unrighteous. The Savior himself suffered more than any person on earth has suffered and he was sinless.

The unsettling part is the quote implies that personal righteousness is not the solution. This is not true. That is the kind of thinking that will destroy our power over the adversary. We MUST cling to the commandments. We MUST cling to our covenants. We MUST cling to our Savior Jesus Christ. We cannot afford to do otherwise.

2 Nephi 31:19-21 offers each of us understanding concerning our responsibility to press on in righteousness. Look for the spirit that can be felt as you read these words:

19 And now, my beloved brethren, after ye have gotten into this strait and narrow path, I would ask if all is done? Behold, I say unto you, Nay; for ye have not come thus far save it were by the word of Christ with unshaken faith in him, relying wholly upon the merits of him who is mighty to save.

20 Wherefore, ye must press forward with a steadfastness in Christ, having a perfect brightness of hope, and a love of God and of all men. Wherefore, if ye shall press forward, feasting upon the word of Christ, and endure to the end, behold, thus saith the Father: Ye shall have eternal life.

 21 And now, behold, my beloved brethren, this is the way; and there is none other way nor name given under heaven whereby man can be saved in the kingdom of God. And now, behold, this is the doctrine of Christ, and the only and true doctrine of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, which is one God, without end. Amen.

I offer my testimony that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the only church on the earth that is led by our Savior Jesus Christ. He has mercifully given us prophets and apostles on the earth today to guide us though the confusion in the world. We must vigilantly heed their words with exactness, or we will be led astray.

All that I have written here has been done so with love for God and with the love I carry in my heart for my fellow men.

-Sara Davis-

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