LONDON, January 31, 2013 (LifeSiteNews.com) – The office of Rev. Steve Chalke, the UK pastor who recently gained notoriety by his support for “gay marriage,” has reportedly been “swamped” with phone calls. A self-defined evangelical Christian pastor calling for Christians to accept homosexuality or same-sex attraction itself is such a novelty that the mainstream media has flooded the internet with the story.
Chalke had said that the real problem of the gay community is not their self-identification, but with the rampant promiscuity that harms them physically and spiritually. The solution, he said, is for Christians to “consider nurturing positive models for permanent and monogamous homosexual relationships.”
But one Christian counselor in the UK who famously lost her license for offering therapy to clients with unwanted same-sex attraction, has responded to Chalke saying that people suffering from unwanted same-sex attraction know full well that the “orientation” is itself the problem. Lesley Pilkington wrote a rebuttal to Chalke’s article for LifeSiteNews.com in which she says that Christians accepting homosexuality, and ultimately promoting the homosexualist ideology, are doing more harm than they know to vulnerable people who need help living chaste and moral lives.
People with same-sex attraction who want to live genuinely Christian or sexually moral lives, whether believers or not, have told her that “they feel they are not listened to when they express those thoughts to most professionals and some within the evangelical churches,” she said.
“My work then with helping those who desire to change their attractions for the same sex is made increasingly difficult by those in the church, who call themselves the ‘New Evangelicals,’ and who back same sex marriage.
“Steve Chalke is the most recent example of a high profile ‘evangelical’ who has now joined this group.”
In an interview with LSN, Pilkington cited serious problems with Chalke’s Christian theology. She and others in the evangelical and reform community in Britain have said by having denied fundamental Christian doctrine, notably the atonement for sin by Christ on the cross, Chalke has placed himself outside the Christian fold entirely. Having rejected the notion of sin, Pilkington argues, Chalke cannot offer people with same-sex attraction anything other than their old sinful lives dressed up in more respectable clothes.
Chalke, she said, is one of a growing cadre of people who reject Christian ideals in favor of the world’s new secularist ideologies and are offering gay people what the world offers: “the fog of deception, misinformation, hubris, good intentions and just plain lies.”
Those who do adhere to orthodox Christian beliefs about sin and redemption, she said, are able to show people a way of life that will bring them peace and ultimately eternal happiness.
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“I am very aware,” she said, “of the painful and genuine struggles of those who are caught up in this life and we the church have been negligent in our duties of love and compassion to those who are same sex attracted,” she said.
“But we must understand love as the Cross, as a Person, the Lord Jesus Christ, and all love flows from that, within His word. Love is not defined as man’s feelings however strong and well intentioned but according to His loving boundaries who has made us.”
Christians, she said, have fallen into the habit of using the media’s terminology and referring to people like Steve Chalke in political terms as “liberals.” But in reality, and however politically incorrect it might sound, a person who denies the basic doctrines of Christianity is properly called an “apostate,” one who has abandoned his religion. In the case of Chalke, he has replaced Christianity with the relativistic, secularist dogmas pushed by the media.
And because he repeats the friendly-sounding platitudes of the modern secular left, he comes across as “plausible and indeed likable”. Pilkington said that perhaps “his motives are ‘good’” in that they are well-intentioned out of ignorance, but that this is a “deception” and she fears that “many, many will be taken in by him and others like him”.
“That is the perilous state we are in here in the UK in large measure and probably America. It’s people like Steve Chalke who are in fact dangerous.”
She relates an example of one client, a man struggling with homosexual impulses who wanted to live a genuine Christian life. This man listened to one of Chalke’s sermons “and was very moved”. In the sermon, Chalke spoke of the Christian church being “inclusive” to those who feel marginalized and excluded.
“Now we would all agree with that and that draws people in,” she said. “But if you listen to all that he says, he then denies the ‘sin’ aspect, and there is the strong suggestion that homosexuality is not sin.
“It totally confused my client and I had to spend a long time with him talking again about the whole gospel, the forgiveness of sin, and how central all that is.
“Liberals, or more correctly those who are apostate, actually hate their people and the LGBT community for which they profess so much love, because they tell lies and lead their people into deception, and if there is no repentance, into hell.”
She added, “Its those who tell the truth and the whole gospel no matter how difficult who actually love their people.”