|Because of Gays, we need revival|
In the MRT, overhearing a group of teenagers talking about the Christian faith suprprised me about their annoyance of a couple of Indians nearby who were holding hands (because of their culture and not because they were gay). "Should ask Pastor Kong to talk to them about biblical culture", one of them remarked. Whilst their NMP proclaims that the majority ie the World is against Homosexuality, the reality is that many Christians considers it as a symptom of a Wordly culture as opposed to a Christian culture. Ironically, when Christians used the majority argument in 377A, we have actually long been seduced into a Worldy culture and being anti-gay is part of that seduction. Any pretence of Christian morality and righteouness have long been contradicted by the falling away to worship pagan gods beginning 4th century, cultimating in the crusades of the 11 , 12, and 13th centuries, and the inquisitions for the 14 to 16th centuries. Any claim of a biblical culture of God's love, mercy and grace would be negated by our stance against blacks and women int he last 300 years, and our anti-gay position in the last 40 years. We really do need a revival!
In the Christian Post Singapore, a survey was carried out recently to the Pastors of the major denominations and mega churches concerning the issue of homosexuality. There appears to be a changing response with the churches less eager to proclaim publicly their anti-gay stance. This was exemplified by the response from the Pastor of a mega church in Tampines who stated that homosexuality was only one of the many "sins", which he said points to the need for a Christian revival in Singapore to change the moral climate. The Pastor has chosen to ignore the fact that gays are not an immoral choice but rather irrespective of culture and religion exist in similar percentage in every generation. We have a choice to believe in Jesus Christ, but not in our God given sexual orientation. We have put a barrier between God and the Gay Community, and this is the real sin. By putting up this barrier, even though the gay community is less than 5% of the population, we may have locked out the door for revival.
The Pastor also seemed to missed out idol worship which is engaged by 90% of the nation. How could there be a revival when we target the wrong population segment? who will never change whatever faith they are in because whether we are straight or gay is no linked to our religion. Were the issues in the Old Testament linked to Homosexual Acts or were they due to Baal worship whose adherence resulted in mass sexual orgies which were primarily between men and women but extended to men having sex with men. The abomination here is the sexual orgies by both men and women highlighted by the extremes of same sex acts of a majority of the population, because they were straights unnaturally motivated by the Idol Worship and not by the natural sexual orientation of a small minority of the population whose motive is love which is from a pure heart.
Despite the claims that Singapore is the Antioch of Asia, the revival in Singapore appears to be within the walls of the church, ie there is a very large growth of a few mega churches such as City Harvest and New Creation Church, but the overall percentage of the Evangelical Born Again Christians have increased slightly but still remained less than 10% of the population. As a result, some have called for more interfaith dialog between the National Council of Churches and the major faiths.
The Christians in Singapore are highly fervent and evangelistic as observed by many reported news of very open and inhibited sharing of the gospel. Yet, despite all their prayers, there has not been revival in the biblical sense. In Acts 4:4, a total of five thousand men believed in a single day. The number 5, represents grace, and the church grew mightily. There were healings and a spiritual revival in the bible on the scale which could not be seen today even though Jesus promised in John 5:20, that the disciples would do greater works. We have rationalized this lack by saying that Salvation is the ultimate miracle, hence effectively neglecting the ministry of Christ to preach the Word not only in speech only but of power. Our preaching should be necessarily be followed by powerful signs as a norm to confirm our message being God sent. However, miracles are rare and the Catholic Church would even proclaim one a saint if miracles could be attributed to that person.
The Christians in Singapore appears to have done all the right things for revival. We have very strong mega churches and praying churches. There have been revival but not widespread. What is hindering a national revival that will move beyond the boundaries of our church to the HDB heartlands? The Jews were very religious and prayed to God even in fasting. But yet, God did not hear them. God did not hear them not because of general sin but specifically because their hands were filled with blood they committed against the weak.
By coming against Gays, not only did we not fight for justice and plead for truth, but we have spoken lies about this community and made them outcasts and put them in prisons. We have conceived evil and bring forth great harm to this community. We have caused so many sufferings - of Gays living and hiding in lonely closets and bounded by our condemnation, and kept away from God. Our actions have brought forth harm with many gays taking their own lives and the high rate of HIV in this community because their relationships are not valued not protected by Law or the community.
When we pray, we raise our hands to God. It is the same hands filled with the blood of our sins against the gay community. How God could answer our prayers? How could a righteous God reward our evil with good? By God's grace and mercy because of Jesus Christ, we would not received judgment for what we have done but the cry of the Gay community could not be quenched and today pray as we might, there is little moral justification for God to bring revival. By our own hands, we have stopped the move of God because our God is a just and moral God, and His righteousness must be maintained.
We will start to have open havens for revival in Singapore, when we acknowledged our sins against the Gay community, and come to a contrite heart to ask God and the Gay community for forgiveness. The Christian Churches in Singapore is called to "sin no more" just like the prostitute is called not to return to her old ways. Having Gay marriages and Gay rights to be treated with common dignity and equality would be a start. By asking for forgiveness we will not be condemned for our sins. However, we are asking for God's grace in bringing revival to our land, and for that to occur, the Law must be fulfilled because we have stolen and taken so much from the Gay community. We have done far too much damage which must be accounted for in order for God's grace to flow through.
Pray as we might, revival will not come until we like Zacchaeus have a change of heart and repentance so deep and meaningful that we repay four fold of all the harm that we have caused. We are not talking about restoring equal rights for the gay community, but repaying four fold for all the harm that we have caused. We have prayed so strongly in Singapore against the principalities, but the natural law could not be overcome. For blessings of revival to come, there is a requirement for restoration that must be fulfilled for the righteousness of God to be fulfilled. It will cost us a great deal, just as it cost Zacchaeus half of his wealth!. Consider giving half the wealth of the church to the gay community! a nearly impossible even and so today revival in Singapore is perhaps a far fetched dream.
Revival is possible in Singapore because we have a God of impossibility. But we have to give up all that we have, our pride, our self righteousness, our fears of those different from us, and lastly our wealth and riches. The first Christians did, they lost everything that the Gospel might be preached, so today, we are again asked to offer all that revival may come to Singapore. Our riches have always been a problem for us to enter into revival of the Kingdom of God. Ultimately, the churches in Singapore will have to make a decision to give up some of its riches to bless and help the gay community - for the camel to go through the eye of a needle. Pray as we might, the Gay issue will not simply disappear even though 377a may be eventually be a footnote in history.
Come, Lord Jesus. Come.