There have been several cases reported by the new media of Christians who refuse to do business with individuals of the LGBT persuasion. Why do Christians refuse to serve the LGBT community? It is because the Bible teaches that homosexuality is a sin and Christians do not want to be seen as supporting that lifestyle.
However, the Bible teaches that all of us are sinners (Romans 3:10). Everyone with whom we Christians do business has sinned and will continue to sin. So why do we classify some sins as being so beyond the pale that we must refuse to do business with those who commit them? Where in the Bible does it tell us this is what we should do? What the Bible does tell us is that the consequence of all our sins is the same.
The acts of the sinful nature are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God. (Galatians 5:19-21 NIV)
God, in the above passage, does not single out any one of the above sins as worse than the others. So if we believe that we should not do business with those who commit the sin of sexual immorality will we also refuse to serve those who exhibit the sin of hatred, discord, jealously, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions, and envy? If we do, we will not have any customers.
Or take the case of divorce between heterosexual couples. Everyone acknowledges the Bible states that divorce (with the exception of infidelity) is a sin (Matthew 5:31-32). So will the Christian community refuse to serve a heterosexual couple who are divorced and want to marry?
Instead, maybe we should follow Jesus’ example.
While Jesus was having dinner at Matthew’s house, many tax collectors and “sinners” came and ate with him and his disciples. When the Pharisees saw this, they asked his disciples, “Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and ‘sinners’?” On hearing this, Jesus said, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. But go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice.’ For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.” (Matthew 9:10-13 NIV
Tax collectors were among the most despised people in Jesus’ era and yet Jesus associated with them. To others who had sinned Jesus exhibited compassion; he did not condemn them but counseled them to leave their life of sin (John 8:1-11). If we claim to be followers of Christ, should we not do the same?