I know that the Bible says that homosexuality is a sin and that those who do so will not inherit the Kingdom of God, but it also says that the only unforgivable sin is not accepting Jesus. If a gay or lesbian person accepts Jesus, but is not able to change his or her lifestyle, can they go to heaven? What about alcoholics, drug abusers, child molesters, etc.?
There is only one sin that is mentioned that is unforgivable. That is the sin of not believing and not receiving Jesus Christ into your life. A homosexual person can accept Christ, just as an alcoholic, a drug addict, or a mass-murderer can. In fact, over one-third of the Bible was written by murderers (Moses, David, Paul…). Jesus' offer of salvation is open to everyone. When someone is saved, it is not due to a change in their lifestyle but it does and should change their lifestyle. If someone has truly accepted Christ into their life, then nothing can keep them out of heaven. In John 10:28-29, Christ says of Christians,
“I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of My hand….and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father’s hand.’
The term “no man” is repeated twice, indicating the importance of it to us. This “no man” includes our own selves or anybody else. This would seem to cover every sin, even born-again Christian’s committing suicide. Here’s why: When Jesus said in John 3:16 – 17 that “….whoever believes in Him will not perish, but has everlasting life.” the condition to this eternal life is believing in Him. This whoever can be anybody. A practicing homosexual, an intravenous drug user, murderer, etc. The “will not” is present indicative or rather “it’s a done deal” in God’s eyes already. Remember that God calls those things in the future as if they already exist because he has the power to accomplish His will. That’s why the Alpha and Omega can say “…but has [presently for believers or already has] everlasting life”.
Then John 3:17-18 reveals why your secure. For “He did not come into the world to condemn the world; but that through Him, the world might be saved”. If you believe in Him, your not condemned…period! The blood of Christ covers past, present and future sins. Although you still reap the consequences of them, those consequences are not losing eternal life. The only ones who are condemned are those who won’t believe in Jesus. To anyone trying to overcome homosexuality, drug abuse, etc. I hope that they understand that they will continue to sin, again and again, but one’s salvation is unaffected. Rewards may diminish in heaven, but nobody who accepts Christ can be lost by Christ.
Consider Paul, a spiritual giant if anyone ever was. He may have been the greatest missionary ever and was the greatest contributor to the New Testament. This man did exactly, time and again, what he knew to be wrong (Romans 7:15). Then he failed to do what was right, even though he was aware of it at the time (Romans 7:19). He sinned willingly but not willfully. There is a great deal of difference in the two. If a person senses change is needed or does change, that's a good sign that Christ is working in their life. They are willing to do good. To not try at all (like the unsaved) is willfully rejecting Christ since they aren’t even willing to try.
Works-based salvation (what we can do) saves no one, for no one can save themselves (Romams 6:23). Besides, God is the only one who truly knows our hearts, but if Christ has become the Lord, then the Holy Spirit will begin to deal with the sin of homosexuality in their life. Not stop all the urges, not stop all of the returns to it, but prompt and urge the believer not to engage in such behavior as well as other ungodly acts. But neither ought one constantly worry, even to sleeplessness, about losing their salvation. John 3:16 says “that whomever would believe in Him would not perish“. It doesn’t add: unless, or except for, or in the event of….. It is clearly not conditional on any other thing or anyone (including our own selves).
Not Saved By Works But For Works
If at any time we feel we get to heaven partly through our own efforts, we are unknowingly holding to a teaching that the Bible continually condemns. Such a definition of grace is man's careful fabrication, for the Bible consistently declares that the believer's right standing with God is “without works” (Romans 4:6), “without the deeds of the Law” (Romans 3:28), “not of works” (Ephesians 2:9), “It is the gift of God,” (Ephesians 2:8). Obviously we aren’t saved by good works, but for good works as James points out. But, if a person claims to be saved and shows absolutely no external evidence of it or there is not spiritual hunger or growth, then that person may not actually be saved.
To attempt to make the believer's response part of his salvation and to look upon grace as “a help” is to flatly deny Biblical truth, “…if by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace…” (Romans 11:6). The simple Biblical message is that “the gift of righteousness” in Christ Jesus is a gift, resting on His all-sufficient sacrifice on the cross, “For if by one man's offense death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ” (Romans 5:17).
So it is as Christ Jesus Himself said, He died in place of the believer, the One for many (Mark 10:45), His life a ransom for many. As He declared, …this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins” (Matthew 26:28). This is also what Peter proclaimed, “For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God…” (I Peter 3:18). Paul's preaching is summarized at the end of II Corinthians 5:21, “For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him..” (II Corinthians 5:21).
A hundred good deeds can not absolve anything but a guilty conscience (Mark 1:15). Even after a person is saved, they can feel they might not be saved, then the urge moves to “meriting,” “earning,” or “being good enough,” instead of simply accepting with empty hands, the gift of righteousness in Christ Jesus. To refuse to accept what God commands is the same sin as that of the religious Jews of Paul's time, “For they being ignorant of God's righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God.” (Romans 10:3) No amount of works can save anyone. Jesus has done it all, once and for all!. Since we can not bring about our own salvation, it stands to reason that we can not bring about it’s loss. Tragically, some churches do not teach eternal security, therefore members often live in fear and doubt. The good news is no one need live in fear or doubt anymore.
God gives people the power of the Holy Spirit to break addictions, lifestyles and destruction behaviors, including homosexuality. If the person does not change in someway, then perhaps they were never truly saved, for the Holy Spirit convicts us of sin and we seek forgiveness from God. The former addicts, substance abusers and homosexuals will want to stop these sins. The difference is that holiness is not the way to Jesus, Jesus is the way to holiness.