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The narrative our culture puts forward regarding homosexuality is that we have only two options—affirmation or alienation. Sadly, the church has far too often simply condemned and alienated those in the LGBT community. What greater lie could we tell about our Savior than to distance ourselves from others, especially at their moments of greatest hurt and vulnerability?

Jesus shows us that a third response—a gospel response—is possible. He shows us how to respond with grace and truth, how to hold out God’s truth and God’s love, not having to choose between the two. Truth without grace is fundamentalism. But grace without truth is vapid sentimentality. Failing in either puts us out of step with Jesus. As a church, we should be known not only for our unflinching commitment to truth, but also for our excessive love toward our neighbors. We must not only speak the truth of Christ, we must do so with the spirit of Christ.

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Ask the average person off the street to mention what they know about the Bible, and chances are pretty high you’ll hear something about the 10 Commandments. Most of us know about them, even if we can’t name all of them (and 90% of us can’t). But I’m guessing that most people have never really tried to measure their lives against them.

I’ve done this with people one on one, and they generally assume they’ll be able to score at least a 3 or 4. But let’s be honest. How do you measure up?

1. You shall have no other Gods before me. Can you say, I have never put anything before God in my life. He has always been pre-eminent in my thoughts, affections, and actions.” If I look at my own life, I’ve often gotten more excited about a new relationship, or a job promotion, or a new possession, or even a new TV program—than I have about God and his Word. So I’ve failed question number one.

2. You shall have no carved images of me. This commandment is about reshaping God according to your liking, believing wrong things about him because you’d prefer that he be a different way. Have you consistently refused to do that, believing fully everything his Word reveals about him, without doubting, or wishing he were different?

3. You shall not take my name in vain. This has to do with more than not saying, “G.D.” It has to do with how highly we regard the name of God. Can you say, I have always held God’s name in highest respect. I have always represented that name well—never, for example, calling myself a follower of his yet and not obeying him fully. I’ve always lived up to the name ‘Christian.’” Yes or no? (Status update: I’m 0 for 3 so far.)

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I pray that we at the Summit will never forget that people are the mission. People like Lorraine, who for the first time in her life, knows grace and love: “I died and was reborn, just like Jesus did. So I can’t be that person in the pit anymore. I’m not that person anymore.”

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