Announcements (31 Aug 14)

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Aug 312014
 

Teachers’ Appreciation Sunday: Thank God for all our Sunday School teachers and may the Lord continue to raise up faithful men and women who would teach others who are faithful (2 Tim 2: 2). All teachers and helpers in Junior Worship are welcome to a thanksgiving lunch at 1230pm.

Catechism Class continues today 11.30am @ Kindergarten Office. Teacher: Eld. Sim

Church Family Day @ Botanical Gardens: THIS Sat 6/9 Please come to the church by 9am if you have registered for the event.

In-Conversation Sat 13/9. Please keep the date free. Do submit any questions to the church office email nlbpc@singnet.com.sg  by 7/9.

Chinese Gospel Sunday (14/9) 11.30am & 7pmDo bring unsaved friends and relatives. Sp: Rev. Daniel Khoo (am) and Bro. Job Yeo (pm).

Combined BP Youth Camp: 15 – 18/12 @ Oldham Hall, ACS (Barker) Theme: The Lordship of Christ Sp: Rev. Isaac Ong Fees: $70/- (Early Bird Special before 30/9); $90/= (1/10 – 30/11). Register online @ HTTP://CBPYC14.COM/ Closing Date: 30/11. All youths are welcome!

Teens’ Retreat: 28-30/ 12 Venue: National Service Resort & Country Club Theme: The Fantastic Four. All youths under 16 are encouraged to participate.

Funds Needed: Members are urged to prayerfully give to the following funds: Family Day (Sat 6/9) Fund and Mission Fund

Extraordinary Congregational Meeting with Election on 19/10: The candidates for the election are: Rev Gabriel Gan for Pastor, Dn Tan Wee Boon and Dn Yap Chee Kian for Elders and Bro. James Goh for Deacon. Photos of these candidates will be up on the Notice Board shortly. The Election Officer appointed is Bro. Ronnie Pang. Appointments of two Returning Officers will be announced soon. In addition, at this ECM we will also have to ratify the appointment of trustees (Dn. Ivan Lim & Dn. William Lee) of the church property.

Members, please take note of the following procedures in preparation for the ECM:

  1. We shall be checking the electoral roll next Sunday 7/9. Please ensure your name is included in the roll if you are entitled to vote.
  2. The Notice of the ECM cum Election will be served on Sunday 5/10.

31 Aug 14 – Daily prayer is important

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Aug 312014
 

By Eld. Prasad

For born-again Christians, prayer is the only way to communicate with God. Prayer is the vehicle for daily dialog with the God who created us. The importance of daily communication through prayer cannot be overestimated. So why is daily prayer so important? Five reasons follow:

1.   Daily prayer gives us an opportunity to share all aspects of our life with God. Life’s circumstances change on a daily basis. In fact, things can go from good to bad to worse in a very short time. God wants us to be close to Him at all times and calls us to share with Him our joys and triumphs. He also calls us to bring our concerns to Him for disposition and potential blessing. Jeremiah 33:3 states, “Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and shew thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not.”God wants us to call on Him so that He can answer our prayers. The heart of God wants to share with us incredible blessings that we might otherwise have missed had we not reached out to Him through prayer. James 4:8 to “Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you…”

2.   Daily prayer gives us the chance to express gratitude for the things in life that God provides. We must give thanks to the Lord for all things that He provides and for all things He does on our behalf. God’s goodness and loving kindness to us should be recognized on a daily basis. In 1 Chronicles 16:34 states “O give thanks unto the LORD, for he is good; for his mercy endureth for ever.” Psalm 9:1 says: “I will praise thee, O LORD, with my whole heart; I will shew forth all thy marvellous works.” We pray on a daily basis to acknowledge God’s faithfulness and God’s abundant provision in our daily lives.

3.   Daily prayer provides the platform for confessing our sin and asking for help in repenting of that sin. Another important element of daily prayer is asking God for the strength to repent of our sins. We all sin daily whether we know it or not. So as born-again Christians, scripture makes it very clear in Psalm 32:5 “I acknowledged my sin unto thee, and mine iniquity have I not hid. I said I will confess my transgressions unto the LORD; and thou forgavest the iniquity of my sin.” Daily prayer time is a great place to unburden one’s self from the debilitating effects of sin. So often we walk around with unconfessed sin that hinders our personal relationship with our God. We should humbly submit ourselves and ask for forgiveness in prayer. Tell God what He already knows for He needs to hear our plea to repent. Let us repent for only God can help us turn from our sins.

4.   Daily prayer is an act of worship and obedience. This is best summarized in 1 Thessalonians 5: 16-18 on why we should pray on a daily basis, “Rejoice evermore. Pray without ceasing. In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.”It’s God’s will for His children to rejoice in Him, to pray to Him and give thanks to Him. To pray without ceasing simply means that we should make prayer a regular habit and we should never stop doing so. Prayer also is an act of worship because by praying to God we are showing Him how much we adore Him. Daily prayer is also an act of obedience that brings joy to God to see His children following His commands.

5.   Daily prayer is a way to acknowledge who is really in control of our lives. As born-again Christians, we know who is really in control. God is sovereign. Nothing happens without God knowing about it (Daniel 4:17). Because God is sovereign over all, He deserves our worship and praise. 1 Chronicles 29:11 – “Thine, O LORD, is the greatness and the power, and the glory, and the victory and the majesty: for all that is in the heaven and in the earth is thine; thine is the kingdom, O Lord, and thou art exalted as head above all.” God is our great King and as such, He controls every aspect of our lives. Each day we should acknowledge God’s proper place in our lives humbly and with a reverence reserved for such a great and awesome God.

Prayer is something that we all should want to do on a daily basis. Yet for many Christians it can be a challenge to humble one’s self in daily prayer. For those who have been walking with the Lord for many years, daily prayer may become stale and lacking in proper conviction or reverence. Whether one is a new believer or an established one, prayer should always be considered the best way to speak to God. Imagine not speaking to a loved one or a close friend. How long would the relationship last? Daily prayer with God is daily fellowship with our heavenly Father. It is truly amazing that God would want to have fellowship with us at all. In fact, the psalmist asks in Psalm 8:4 “What is man, that thou art mindful of him? And the son of man, that thou visitest him?” Daily prayer is a good way to understand this incredible truth and the marvellous privilege God has given us.

Announcements (24 Aug 14)

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Aug 242014
 

Condolence to Rev. Nathan and Sis. Hannah – Sis. Hannah’s father went home to glory on 9/8. May the Lord comfort the bereaved family.

Catechism Class continues today 11.30am @ Kindergarten Office. Today Eld Prasad will take the class.

Adults Sunday School TODAY 11.30am:Lesson 11: Ruling in the Fear of God. All are welcome.

AF Anniversary 30/8 4pm Sp: Eld Sim Chee Seng. Let us come for a time of thanksgiving for God’s faithfulness. All are welcome.

Church Family Day (Sat 6/9) @ Botanical Gardens: LAST DAY FOR REGISTRATION! Register with Kevin Lim, Alvin Lim, Rachel Kua and Naomi Tan. Fees are:  Adults: $10/= Students and Senior Citizens: $6/= Children below 12 – free.

In-Conversation Sat 13/9. Please keep the date free. Do submit any questions to the church office email nlbpc@singnet.com.sg  by 7/9.

Chinese Gospel Sunday (14/9) 11.30am & 7pmDo bring unsaved friends and relatives.

Teens’ Retreat: 28-30/ 12 Venue: National Service Resort & Country Club Theme: The Fantastic Four. All youths under 16 are encouraged to participate.

Funds Needed: Members are urged to prayerfully give to the following funds: Family Day (Sat 6/9) Fund and Mission Fund.

24 Aug 14 – Continuity

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Aug 242014
 

Continuity

By Lilian Lee

This year saw many changes for New Life BP Church. One of these changes includes our church’s participation in this year’s Combined BP Youth Camp. It will be held on 15 – 18 Dec 2014 at Oldham Hall, ACS (Barker). The speaker is Rev. Isaac Ong and the theme is on The Lordship   of Christ.

Since 2009, what was organised annually were the Combined BP Youth Conferences and this is the first attempt to organise a youth camp. The other participating BP churches include: Life, Galilee, Sharon, Philadelphia, Calvary and Maranatha. The invitation has also been extended to other BP churches although they are not represented in the planning stage.

These are the objectives of the camp:

  1. To provide a programme for the youths to be nurtured in the Reformed Faith.
  2. To provide an avenue for the youths to fellowship with others from like-minded B-P Churches.
  3. To provide a platform for youths to be trained in leadership and to exercise their stewardship.
  4. To challenge the youths in committing themselves to be faithful in the service unto the Lord.

Bro. Justin Gumapon and I were privileged to sit in the organising committee of this Youth camp. It is refreshing to work with these youths in the committee. I was very much encouraged by not only their energy but their zeal and love for the Lord and the youths that they hope to influence. Much discussion and legwork went into looking for a suitable venue for the camp. As the camp expects about 200 campers, none of the churches can host the event. Other venues, which were suitable, were unavailable. In the end, the choice of venue fell upon Oldham Hall, which provides excellent accommodation and facilities for discussion and games. However it is expensive. I remember that meeting well as the youths battled with the issue of high cost: “Do we really have to pay so much to go to a youth camp?” “Will it cut cost if we don’t switch on the air con during meals and we use the fans instead?” I was heartened to hear how some of the bigger churches were willing to help out some of the smaller (and poorer) churches. The bottomline is to ensure that all the youths who want to attend will not be deterred by cost. That day I left the meeting rejoicing as I was moved by one of the young men who at the end of the meeting gave a brilliant and positive summary of all the things we said and he saw clearly that if the Lord’s purpose is for the youths to come to the camp, then we should try our best to help them.

All these youths represent the future of our BP churches. I was encouraged to see that the Lord has raised up some very fine young men in each of the BP churches represented. My prayer is for the Lord to call some of them into full time service. It is a noble thing to serve the Lord and we should encourage all our young people to do that while they have time and energy and physical abilities. It is good that this Combined BP camp seeks to do just that and will provide opportunities for the youths to further develop their skills. It is particularly good that our own youths will meet with the youths of other like-minded BP churches and may they encourage one another.

Even as our church looks to renew our leadership, let us pray that the potential leaders will also seek to equip themselves in areas that they are weak so as to serve the Lord well. Let us run together as a church young and old the next lap and give all glory to the Lord.

Registration Details of the Combined BP Youth Camp: 15 – 18/12

@ Oldham Hall, ACS (Barker) Theme: The Lordship of Christ Sp: Rev. Isaac Ong

Fees: $70/- (Early Bird Special before 30/9); $90/= (1/10 – 30/11).

Register online @ HTTP://CBPYC14.COM/ Closing Date: 30/11.

All youths are welcome!

Announcements (17 Aug 14)

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Aug 172014
 

Deepest Condolence: May the Lord comfort the bereaved family of Dn Ivan Lim whose father went home to the Lord on 9/8.

Session Meeting: TODAY at 1.30 pm. in the Conference Room.

Catechism Class starts TODAY@1130am in the Kindergarten Office. Tr: Eld. Sim Chee Seng

Adults SS Class today: Lesson 10: Living in the fear of God. All are welcome!

Church Family Day (Sat 6/9) @ Botanical Gardens: Please register EARLY so that the committee can plan the event. Register with Kevin Lim, Alvin Lim, Rachel Kua and Naomi Tan. Fees are:  Adults: $10/= Students and Senior Citizens: $6/= Children below 12 – free.

In-Conversation Sat 13/9. Please keep the date free.

Chinese Gospel Sunday (14/9) 11.30am & 7pmDo bring unsaved friends and relatives.

Combined BP Youth Camp: 15 – 18/12 @ Oldham Hall, ACS (Barker) Theme: The Lordship of Christ Sp: Rev. Isaac Ong Fees: $70/- (Early Bird Special before 30/9); $90/= (1/10 – 30/11). Register online @ HTTP://CBPYC14.COM/ Closing Date: 30/11. All youths are welcome!

Teens’ Retreat: 28-30/ 12 Venue: National Service Resort & Country Club Theme: The Fantastic Four. All youths under 16 are encouraged to participate.

Funds Needed: Members are urged to prayerfully give to the following funds: Family Day (Sat 6/9) Fund and Mission Fund

17 Aug 14 – Christ’s Selfless Love (John 13:1-20)

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Aug 172014
 

Christ’s Selfless Love (John 13:1-20)

By Eld. Sim Chee Seng

This passage records one of the most touching incidents in the life of the Lord Jesus Christ while he was on earth. This incident occurred prior to the time he was to be brought before the authorities who falsely accused Him of treason and sentenced Him to death by crucifixion. Jesus was together with His disciples in the evening, just before dinner, when he did the most amazing thing – he washed the disciples’ feet. This passage opens the window of heaven and allows us to peep a little into the heart of God through the action of His begotten Son, Jesus Christ. The Lord Jesus has told them that He always acts in obedience to His Father’s command. In washing His disciples’ feet, God’s glory is revealed in His Son who showed us the selfless love of God and later in His crucifixion, He reveals to us the sacrificial love of God.

Jesus’ Example

Jesus has been with the disciples for about 3 years now. He knew that His hour of Crucifixion is coming when as the Lamb of God, he has to lay down His life for the sins of the whole world. He is going to demonstrate the same selfless and sacrificial love in the humble service of feet washing. In His example, we have, as someone said “an acted parable of the Lord’s humiliation unto death.”  Three points to note here:

(A) Jesus washed the feet of all his disciples including that of Judas whom he knew was going to betray Him (v27). O what great love is this! that He even washed the feet of His enemy. This feet-washing is a sign to us. It tells us what God himself is like – He would even wash the feet of the one who would betray Him!

(B) Jesus took the place of a slave. The Master is washing the disciples’ feet. Jesus “knowing that the Father had given all things into his hands” (v3) now takes His disciples’ dirty feet and washes them. God the Son became a servant to serve man. Recall Matt 20:28: “Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.”

Slaves were looked down upon in ancient days. What Jesus did provoked Peter to speak out in love. Alas, his was a defective love, lacking in humility (the precise thing that Jesus was trying to teach in the feet washing). Why so? In Peter’s response we see the pride and self-will that is at the heart of all sin and that is the very thing for which the Cross will atone and bring healing. Peter and the disciples did not understand most of what Jesus has said and done, but they did after the Cross, the resurrection and the descent of the Spirit. Peter has not fully grasped the lesson of humility. He has not discovered the depths of his brokenness and selfishness, for we know later he denied the Lord thrice. His denial of the Lord will tear away his pride and clear the way for genuine humility and transformation.

(3) Jesus identity with the disciples. Jesus affirms that “If I wash thee not, thou hast no part with me.” (v8) If the disciples are to have a share with Jesus in His community and the eternal life that comes through faith in Him, then they must be washed by Jesus. Further, Jesus says “He that is washed needeth not save to wash his feet, but is clean every whit;and ye are clean.” (v10) Those who are washed are clean and they belong to Him, implying that the bathing is the cleansing of sin on the Cross. What is then needed is daily cleaning of the feet which suggests the forgiveness of one’s daily sin.

Disciples’ Duties

After Jesus finished washing their feet, He asked “Know ye what I have done to you?” (v. 12). They would not completely understand until they have seen the Cross (v. 7), but they could at least grasp his act as an example of humility. The cleansing word that they received led them to recognize Jesus as both Master and Lord (v. 13). Jesus affirmed that this is indeed his identity.

If Jesus is both Master and Lord. Then what are the implications?

(A) We are to follow Jesus’ example. If Jesus takes the role of a servant, then His disciples is expected to do likewise. We are to express in both word and deed, the selfless love of God to others, friends or foes.

(B) We are to serve one another in humility and love.  In the community of believers, we are to manifest the love of God through serving one another with no vestige of pride or position. Yes there are recognized positions of leadership within the Church, but the exercise of leadership is to follow this model of servanthood. The attitude of the world is centred on pride and selfishness, but not so for Christ’s followers. The life that pleases God is a life exemplified by the attitude of “feet washing” or humility of servanthood.

(C) We are to share the Gospel. As Jesus is sent by the Father, the disciples are sent by Jesus on a mission. As we have received the good news of salvation, we ought to share the Gospel everywhere and to everyone we meet about this great God whom we worship. We must tell others about Jesus and what He has done for us.

(D) We need to obey His commandments. Elder Khoo recently shared how one of his relatives like to boast to his mom how fortunate he was to have tasted the best satay and peanut sauce and went at great length to describe his culinary delight. This irritated the mom who gave this rebuke “If you love me, you could have brought some satay for me to eat. But you went on and on. You did nothing but talk.” Actions speak louder than words!

James is right when he says “But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.” Jesus says cryptically, ”Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them” (v. 17). Let us obey and imitate our Lord Jesus Christ who has personally shown us “the way, the truth and the life.” Amen

Announcements (10 Aug 14)

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Aug 102014
 

Session Meeting: Next Sunday at 1.30 pm. in the Conference Room.

Catechism Class will begin on 17/8. Potential candidates will be interviewed by the Elders TODAY @ 1130am. Venue: Kindergarten Office.

Adults SS Class today: Lesson 9: Responding to the Spirit. All are welcome!

AF Retreat (14-16/8): Sp: Ps Gan. Pray for the saints to be refreshed and edified.

Church Family Day (Sat 6/9) @ Botanical Gardens: Registration starts today. Please register with Kevin Lim, Alvin Lim, Rachel Kua and Naomi Tan. Fees (for lunch and transport) are:

  • Adults: $10/=
  • Students and Senior Citizens: $6/=
  • Children below 12 – free.

Combined BP Youth Camp: 15 – 18/12 @ Oldham Hall, ACS (Barker) Theme: The Lordship of Christ Sp: Rev. Isaac Ong Fees: $70/- (Early Bird Special before 30/9); $90/= (1/10 – 30/11). Please register online @ HTTP://CBPYC14.COM/ Closing Date: 30/11. All youths are welcome!

Teens’ Retreat: 28-30/ 12 Venue: National Service Resort & Country Club Theme: The Fantastic Four. All youths under 16 are encouraged to participate.

In-Conversation Sat 13/9. Please keep the date free.

Funds Needed: Members are urged to prayerfully give to the following funds:Family Day (Sat 6/9) Fund and Mission Fund

10 Aug 14 – From Your Pastor’s Desk

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Aug 102014
 

From Your Pastor’s Desk

By Rev. Gabriel Gan

I was born and raised in a typical Taoist Chinese family. My dad (gone to be with the Lord in 1998) came to Singapore from China with his uncle when he was a teenager. At 32 years of age, he married my mother (Malaysian) and they were blessed with 5 children plus one adopted son.

Since young, I followed my mother to temples on festive occasions to pray and offer incense, etc. to the various gods. At home, we worshipped ti kong (God of heaven), tua pei kong, and kuan yin (goddess of mercy). But my worship was more out of fear and I was blindly following my mother’s religion.

I did not come into contact with Christianity until I was in Pre-University. A classmate shared the Gospel with me and I received the Lord Jesus as my Saviour a couple of weeks later. I was touched by the love of God in sending His only begotten Son to pay the penalty for my sins. Knowing the only true God, and Jesus Christ, filled my life with unspeakable joy, and my questions about life’s origin, purpose, significance, and destiny were answered as I grow in the knowledge of the Bible. Everything in life (good and bad) begins to make sense.

I joined a Bible study group called Gospel Letters and Tract Department (GLTD) that met on Saturdays in the balcony of Gilstead Road Life BP Church. In 1976, I was baptized by Rev. Dr. Timothy Tow and became a member of the church. While serving my National Service, God called me to serve Him in full-time Christian ministry. I surrendered to His will in 1978, giving up my place in Singapore University (SU is called NUS today) to study in a Bible College. This decision greatly angered and disappointed my parents because both my elder brothers did not do well academically and I was the first son to gain entry into university (This was something my parents were proud about because it was a rare achievement in the 1970’s).

By divine providence, I left Life BP Church and helped a Baptist pastor plant a new church in Eastern Singapore, studied in the Bible College he started and graduated with my BTh in 1981. Then I furthered my theological education in Maranatha Baptist Bible College & Graduate School of Theology in Wisconsin, USA, and graduated with the MA (Biblical Studies) in 1982-83.

I returned to Singapore, first to get married, and to serve as Assistant Pastor (1984) and Pastor (1985-2006) of Emmanuel Baptist Fellowship. During that period of pastoral ministry, I took a long distance program with Trinity Theological Seminary in Newburg, Indiana and graduated with the MDiv in Biblical Counselling, and later enrolled in the doctoral program (pastoral theology) with Bob Jones University in Greenville, South Carolina. I am a believer in life-long learning: 到老学到老.”

By the blessings and grace of God, I received an Honorary Doctorate in 2009 from Asian Baptist Bible School & Seminary and the Doctorate in Pastoral Theology in 2010 from Bob Jones University. In the 30 years of pastoral ministry, I pastored two Baptist churches, & helped two other struggling congregations. I share the above to the praise and glory of God (see 2 Cor. 3:5-6 and Gal. 6:14).

My former theological position is very similar to the BP Reformed Faith, and thus I can accept and practise the BP constitution.My wife and I have transferred our membership to New Life BP Church. Therefore we would identify ourselves with New Life BP Church and would uphold the doctrines and practices of the church.

God works in amazing ways and in His providence, I started as a BP (1976) and now towards the last leg of my pastoral ministry (2014), He has led me back to serve as a BP pastor in New Life’s English congregation. May I appeal to all New Lifers to pray constantly for me that God will grant wisdom and divine empowerment as I shepherd His flock until my “retirement” or till Jesus comes!

Soli Deo Gloria.

Announcements (03 Aug 14)

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Aug 032014
 

J.O.Y. Sunday:All youths Sec 1 upwards are welcome to this youth programme @ the Chapel 11.30am.

Adults Sunday School TODAY:Lesson 8: Rejecting the Fantasy. All are welcome @Balcony 11.30am.

Sunbeam Choir practice 3/8 @ 10.45am Music Room

Catechism Class will begin on 17/8. Potential candidates will be interviewed by the Elders NEXT SUNDAY. Please register for the class by today.

AF Retreat (14-16/8): Sp: Ps Gan. Pray for the saints to be refreshed and edified.

Church Family Day (Sat 6/9) @ Botanical Gardens: Do keep the date free. Registration will begin soon with affordable fees for lunch and transport:

  • Adults: $10/=
  • Students and Senior Citizens: $6/=
  • Children below 12 – free.

BB/GB: The church has decided to keep this ministry. Praise God for members who stepped forward to fill the gap. Pray for the GB as they need a captain.

Funds Needed: Members are urged to prayerfully give to the following funds:

  • Family Day (Sat 6/9) Fund
  • Mission Fund

03 Aug 14 – Homosexuality: Nature or Nurture?

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Aug 032014
 

Homosexuality: Nature or Nurture?

By Dn. Ivan Lim

There is a recent resurgence of activities associated with LBGT (Lesbian, Bisexual, Gay, Trans-gender) in Singapore. Just last month, the group, including many sympathisers gathered at the Speakers’ Corner at Hong Lim Park to celebrate the annual Pink Dot SG. It was given extensive coverage in the local and international media. In 2013, a gay couple in Singapore, seeking to abolish a long-standing law (section 377A of Penal Code) banning gay sex, had their case heard in court. This came just days after a former department store manager sued his boss for alleged discrimination against homosexuals.

Brethren, let us take a closer look at some of the evidences on this gay issue: Is there any scientific or biological basis for homosexuality? Can one be born gay, much as one can be born with brown eyes? If this is true, then a fair society could not possibly condemn a homosexual as being unnatural or immoral. To that end, gay activists and the liberal media have actively encouraged the idea that homosexuality is physiological and therefore unchangeable.

In 1993, Dr. Dean Hamer, a pro-gay activist, made the astounding claim in his research that there may be a gene for homosexuality. Although Hamer’s study sample was very small, he found a significant link between gays and a marker on the maternal X chromosome, Xq28. Additional studies with larger sample sizes produced conflicting results. It is important to note that Hamer’s experiments have never been validated; in fact, other groups of researchers have discredited Hamer’s work as non-replicable or even fraudulent.

There are many researchers who cite environmental factors as major contributors to homosexuality. They strongly believe that negative early childhood experiences in an unloving or non-supportive home environment are a critical part of this process. Common elements seem to include an emotionally withdrawn or physically absent father and an overbearing, fawning or over-protective mother. In many cases, there are reports of physical, sexual or emotional abuse. Disruption of gender identification may contribute to the development toward homosexuality. This process begins between ages two and four. During this phase, children move from their primary connection with the mother to seek out deeper attachments with the parent of the same gender. For males, the relationship between a boy and his father is the primary means of developing a secure gender identity. As a father and son share time together, the father expresses his value and interest in the son and gives to the son a sense of masculinity. The boy begins to develop a sense of his own gender by understanding himself in relation to his father. Conversely, a mother who is distant, abusive, or physically absent or a mother who is viewed by her daughter as being weak (such as when the mother is abused by males) may disrupt her daughter’s identification with being feminine.

Peer attachments with same-sex friends also play a role in developing gender identity. Eventually, after years of interaction and bonding with same-sex peers, children enter puberty and begin to pay attention to the opposite sex. When this natural process is disrupted, it feels natural for a child to love and crave the attention of those of the same sex. When children with certain temperaments initially perceive rejection of the same-sex parent, they detach and bond with the other parent. They begin to adopt the patterns and attributes of the opposite sex. However, there is always a longing for a connection with the same-sex parent, love and affirmation from the same gender. These children believe that they were born that way, having craved love and attachment with the same-sex parents for as long as they can remember. Homosexual behaviour thus begins as an emotional craving, not a sexual craving. It reflects a legitimate need for non-sexual love, an emotional need that ultimately becomes sexualized with the onset of puberty.

Most researchers have concluded that sexual orientation is a complex, multifactorial issue in which biological, social and psychological factors combine to play a role in the ultimate sexual orientation of an individual.

Although it may be easier, psychologically, for a homosexual to believe that homosexuality is inborn, the accumulated scientific evidence suggests otherwise. Homosexuals may have a genetic predisposition, but human choice is still a factor. A predisposition is not a constraint. Ultimately, sexual orientation is determined outside of the womb. For those who are unhappy living a homosexual lifestyle, this truth offers hope for change. Clinical experience has shown that, with help, some homosexuals can change learned responses and defense mechanisms to early painful experiences.

In the Old Testament account, we know that God destroyed the twin cities of Sodom and Gomorrah, “because their sin is very grievous” (Gen 18:20). Homosexuality is counted as unrighteous, and will be excluded in the eternal kingdom (1 Cor 6:9-10). Just as there is no genetic excuse for stealing, there is no genetic excuse for homosexuality. Environment, culture, and choice make one a thief, and the same factors make one a homosexual.