The issue of homosexuality and same-sex partnerships has become an even more urgent issue in South Africa now that the General Synod of the Dutch Reformed Church has voted to permit those in same-sex relationships to serve as ministers. The synod also voted to permit same-sex unions to be blessed in Dutch Reformed churches.
Thankfully the decision won’t be forced on churches. Each individual Dutch Reformed church can decide for themselves their stance towards those who practice homosexuality in same-sex partnerships. Many of those who are pleased with the synod’s decision equate discrimination towards those who practise homosexuality as essentially the same as discrimination towards black people under apartheid. For them the synod’s decision has been a great moment of liberation to be celebrated.
However, homosexuality is not the new black. According to the Bible, differences in culture and ethnicity are part of God’s good creation and are to be celebrated – even as we are united in Christ. Homosexual activity, on the other hand, (like all other sexual immorality) is not part of God’s good creation, but sinful and dishonouring to God. Ministers and denominations that say otherwise are not being loving towards those who practise homosexuality because they are endangering their souls by giving many a false assurance of a lifestyle pleasing God.