This past Wednesday, Peter Hubbard, author of Love into Light: The Gospel, the Homosexual, and the Church, delivered the annual William R. Rice lectures at DBTS. In his three lectures, Hubbard talked about how to understand and how to show biblical love to those who experience same-sex attraction (SSA).
In his first lecture, Hubbard explained the text of Psalm 36 and sought to provide a biblical framework for understanding SSA. He pointed out that every person’s biggest problem is not his or her sexual identity but rather his or her identity as a sinner. As fallen human beings, we are all sinners in need of Christ, and we all struggle with sin. Different people tend to struggle with different temptations. But we can all identify with the desire to do things that God has forbidden.
In his second lecture, Hubbard examined Romans 1. He noted that Paul speaks about a wide variety of sins in that chapter. Even so-called common or “respectable” sins like greed, gossiping, and disobedience to parents are things that Paul says make people worthy of divine judgment (Rom 1:32). God’s wrath has given all sinners over to sin, and yet God in his grace saves all sinners who come to Christ in repentance and faith.
In his final lecture, Hubbard talked about the church as a place that should be full of both grace and truth. He pointed out that grace without truth is a false grace while truth without grace tends toward self-righteousness. The church should be a place where homosexuals are loved as fellow-image bearers and are pointed to Christ as the only answer to all sin.
At the beginning of his book, Hubbard recounts the first time he counseled a man struggling with SSA. After meeting with this man on numerous occasions, Hubbard says, “The more I listened, the more I learned, the more I realized—we are not different. We are the same. Our specific battles and sins may vary, but our hearts are the same. And our daily need for the grace of Jesus is the same” (Love into Light, 11).
Both mp3s of the lectures and a pdf of the lecture notes are posted here. And if you are interested in reading more about this topic, here is a list of recommended resources that was provided by the speaker.
Robert Gagnon, The Bible and Homosexual Practice: Texts and Hermeneutics
Rosaria Butterfield, The Secret Thoughts of an Unlikely Convert
Sam Allberry, Is God Anti-Gay?
Mark Yarhouse, Homosexuality and the Christian
Denny Burk, What is the Meaning of Sex?
Sherif Girgis, Ryan Anderson, and Robert George, What is Marriage? Man and Woman: A Defense
Jeffrey Satinover, Homosexuality and the Politics of Truth