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“I would refuse to go to a homophobic heaven … I mean I would much rather go to the other place,” Tutu said. “I would not worship a God who is homophobic and that is how deeply I feel about this.”
Let’s play a game of Tutu fill-in-the blank: “I would not worship a God who opposed ________________ and that is how deeply I feel about this.” Fill in any liberal cause, everything from government theft (progressive taxation) to abortion on demand (pre-meditated murder) and you get some idea of the extremism of liberalism. Tutu demonstrates that liberalism is an anti-religion that manifests itself as being deeply religious. It has its own high priests (liberal pundits), inspired texts (On the Origen of Species), and sacraments (abortion and same-sex sex). Heaven becomes hell and hell heaven.
Desmond Tutu is a retired Anglican bishop best known as an opponent of South African apartheid. This is how Wikipedia describes him:
“Tutu’s admirers see him as a man who since the demise of apartheid has been active in the defence of human rights and uses his high profile to campaign for the oppressed, though his consistent opposition to Israel and the United States has made him controversial.”
He’s received the usual number of liberal accolades, everything from the Nobel Peace Prize to the Presidential Medal of Freedom. The more radical a person is, the more awards he gets. Remember that President Obama (2009) and Al Gore (2007) have received the Nobel Peace Prize.
Tutu has been a longtime advocate of same-sex sexuality. In an interview with BBC Radio on November 18, 2007, Tutu declared: “If God, as they say, is homophobic, I wouldn’t worship that God.” He stated at the launching of the book Sex, Love and Homophobia: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Lives (A-Z) that homophobia is a “crime against humanity” and “every bit as unjust” as apartheid.
Tutu reminds me of Satan in Milton’s Paradise Lost: “Better to reign in Hell, than serve in Heav’n.” The problem with Tutu’s ultimatum is that God is in charge of hell. Hell is not a separate realm over which its occupants have control. They will still be ruled by God.
There are other points to consider.
First, God is not “homophobic.” God doesn’t fear anybody or anything.
Second, God makes the rules for everybody. We can’t pick and choose the ones we like and discard the ones we don’t like.
Third, as a bishop in the Anglican Church who once recommended reading the Bible every day, the Bible is explicitly against same-sex sex. Both Testaments make this clear (Lev. 18:22; 20:13; Rom. 1:27; 1 Cor. 6:9–11; 1 Tim. 1:8–11).
Fourth, the biblical and biological norm is heterosexuality (Gen. 1:27–28; 2:18–25; Matt. 19:4). We were designed for heterosexuality. No amount of sexual reimaging or redefining, as the editors of the Oxford Dictionary are about to do, will change that fact. In order to force compliance to this moral evil, governments will have to impose negative sanctions in the name of “hate speech.” That will be our society’s view of hell.
Desmond Tutu is consigning not only himself to hell but also those who defy what both nature (Rom. 1:26–27) and the Bible make abundantly clear (1 Cor. 6:9–11).
Does the Bible leave those who engage in same-sex sex in despair? Note what Paul writes: “Such were some of you; but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God” (1 Cor. 6:11).
Does a new life in Christ mean that homosexual urges, feelings, and temptations will go away? Probably not. Every Christian has to fight the battle against the “old man.” It’s a daily struggle. A Christian who once struggled with drug addiction, pornography, anger, gluttony, and any other sin will still have to struggle with them, maybe for the rest of his life.
Some sins are more easily conquered than others. Sexual sins are more difficult, especially when the sex is linked with intimate relationships.
But even if a sin is difficult to fight against does not mean it should be labeled something else. There is no redefining God’s law no matter how hard the struggle is.
I suspect that Desmond Tutu, when confronted with the long-term reality and permanence of hell, would take refuge in the loveliness of God’s law (Psalm 119). As John tells us, “By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and observe His commandments. For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments; and His commandments are not burdensome” (1 John 5:2-3).