The Christian world these days is filled with people who profess the faith, yet sincerely believe they have no obligation to change their behavior; that God must accept them the way they are. They will brook no argument to the contrary.
Take, for example, Jennifer Knapp, the ex-Christian singer who came out as a lesbian. In an interview for the Bad Christian Podcast, she spoke about a ‘conversation’ about Christianity and homosexuality; you don’t have to read far to realize that Ms Knapp’s idea of a conversation is ‘No matter what you or God says, I’m not changing my lifestyle’.
You can see that in the following excerpts:
"I don't think homosexual orientation, whether you're lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender, I don't think sexual identity in any way is a sin. I understand where the teaching [that says] homosexuality's a sin comes from. However, in understanding that teaching, it's not one that I feel is one that I could back." (emphasis mine)Note: she knows the Bible teaches that homosexuality is a sin, but she disagrees with it.
"And so I think it terms of the LGBT conversation you have to be willing to entertain what that conversation is. It's not good enough to just simply say to somebody that's a sin. For some people it's not. Even Paul talked about that. What's good for me may not be good for you." (emphasis mine again)And here comes the relativistic justification for her unrepentant sin: it’s good for me, it might not be good for you. Paul never writes anything of the sort, contra Ms Knapp: for Paul, all sin is bad, whether it’s thievery, murder, or the many and varied forms of sexual sin – which includes homosexuality.
And here comes the money-quote:
She also discussed the moment she decided to reconcile her faith with her lifestyle.* “God, this is what I got, so you love me with this from where we're starting today or you don't," said Knapp.(emphases mine)Right here, you see Ms Knapp’s error – an error that busloads of professing Christians fall into. You do not bend (reconcile) your faith to your lifestyle; you bend reconcile your lifestyle to your faith. The near-constant refrain, from Matthew to Jude, is the changed nature of the Christian – they no longer do the things they used to do; they no longer sin in the way they used to. Paul, Peter, John, James … they all, in one way or another, demand that sort of changed lifestyle as an indicator of the residence within of the Holy Spirit. And you do not, under any circumstances, demand that God accept you on your terms.
I’ve learned that our willingness to change comes when the Holy Spirit infiltrates us and takes up residence. He convicts us of our sins, then works in sanctifying us, so that we become capable and willing to change our lifestyles to please God; until that happens, we are incapable of pleasing God, no matter what we do.
Ms Knapp’s declaration convinces me she hasn’t been filled with the Spirit, and that her profession of Christian faith is false.