“Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature, the old things passed away, behold, new things have come,” 2 Corinthians 5:17.
President Biden recently signed an executive order directing his administration to protect the LGBTQ community from several different concerns. One of those concerns was conversion therapy.
I am not opposed to conversion, that is, sharing the Gospel with someone and assuming one becomes convicted of their sin and wants to trust Christ, leading that person to Him. But based on what I understand conversion therapy to be, I am opposed to it.
From what I have heard tortuous practices such as electrical shock and brainwashing techniques have been employed to accomplish a so-called “conversion” from homosexuality to heterosexuality. You cannot torture someone into trusting Christ or brainwashing someone into believing; that is not how it works. If this is what we are talking about such practices should be outlawed; they are un-biblical and inhumane.
One cannot talk or torture someone into changing his or her behavior when there has not been a change of heart. We do not need that sort of conversion therapy, because genuine conversion is all the therapy anyone will ever need.
Christian concerns with prohibition of conversion therapy are over the baby being thrown out with the bath water, that is, genuine evangelical concern for those snared in a sinful lifestyle may be inhibited from sharing the only hope for their plight, salvation in Christ.
When California was considering legislation prohibiting conversion therapy two Christians who were pastors expressed their concerns their religious freedom would be curtailed forcing them from sharing how they had been set free from homosexuality.
Pastor Ken Williams and Pastor Elizabeth Woning, two former gay people, oppose the bill claiming it discriminates “against people like themselves, who overcame suicidal thoughts by following their faith away from their LGBT identities.”
Woning said, “For us, walking out our faith with Biblical conviction means life and hope. Our faith has saved us from suicide and given us freedom to live with clear consciences,” adding, “We too would like to be acknowledged and affirmed. Instead, activists attack our efforts to care for like-minded friends by promoting dangerous counseling restrictions and stifling our free speech.”
Williams agreed, “For years, I believed that even God hated me because of my behavior,” he said. “But in my early 20s, I encountered a God who loved me despite my sins and temptations. Today, I love my life. I have been married to my beautiful wife for 13 years, and we have created four incredible children together. To someone like me, California Assemblyman Evan Low’s proposed resolution, ACR-99, feels like an unfair and direct attack.”
Joe Dallas an ordained pastoral counselor wrote the proposed law “restricts much more than counseling, which attempts to change internal sexual responses. It, in fact, dictates to pastors that they cannot teach that homosexuality is a sin, nor can they encourage homosexually-attracted people who hold a traditional biblical view to live in accordance with their own faith.”
It is a statistical fact those who practice the LGBTQ lifestyle are ten times more susceptible to suicide than the general population. The Gospel of Jesus Christ offers the only help and hope for those burdened with the sinful lifestyle of homosexuality.
Biden’s executive order is not currently a threat to Christian counseling, but the day may come when we, like Peter and the early church leaders, may need to say, “We must obey God rather than men,” Acts 5:29.