Rick Warren Says Gay People Can Go to Heaven and Might Not Be Committing Sin

Source: All Christian News.com

Rick Warren, the prominent pastor and author of the best-selling book, “The Purpose Driven Life,” is openly reflective on what it means to be gay and whether or not being gay stops you from going to heaven.

Warren recently stated that gay behavior might be sinful and that gay men and women can go to heaven. Both of these statements are controversial, particularly since Warren has been known to be outspoken about gay culture.

During an interview this week with the Huffington Post, Warren was asked if being gay was a sin.

“I have many, many gay friends, and have worked around the world with them in gay organizations to try to stop AIDS,” he said. “We’re doing ‘World AIDS Day’ this weekend at Saddleback Church. My wife and I have given millions of dollars to help people with HIV/AIDS and have worked with gay organizations on that.”

“What about the love part, though? I hear about the AIDS part,” asked Huffpost Live Host, Marc Lamont Hill. “It’s not illegal to love somebody,” Warren replied.

“But you think it’s a sin,” Hill said.

“No, it’s not a sin to love somebody,” Warren said.

“It might be a sin to have s*x with them,” he added. “It might be.”

Recently, Warren spoke on CNN and was asked if it is possible for someone to be born gay. He said that he’s not so sure about that one.

“I think the jury is still out on that,” he said. “It wouldn’t bother me if there was a ‘gay gene’ found, because here’s what we know about life: I have all kinds of natural feelings in my life, and it doesn’t necessarily mean that I should act on every feeling. … I do not believe that attraction is a sin, but I do believe that some actions are sin.”

Also during his interview on the Huffington Post, Warren stated that he believes that gay people can still go to heaven. This remark contradicts those of other pastors, who argue that gay people will go to hell since they are living in this form of sin.

“No, not because they’re gay,” he said. “We go to Hell because we choose to reject the grace of God.”

When asked if a gay man can go to heaven if he accepts Jesus, Warren was clear in his response.

“He’s going to Heaven!” he declared. “Without a doubt.”

42 thoughts on “Rick Warren Says Gay People Can Go to Heaven and Might Not Be Committing Sin

  1. It is not sinful to be sexually attracted to a person through no fault of one’s own. So yes, a gay person (one who has an undeniable sexual attraction to persons of the same sex through no fault of one’s own) who is not committing mortal sin (I.e., homosexual acts) and who does not have mortal sin on one’s soul at the moment of death can go to heaven.

    It is the homosexual act which is sinful for much of the same reasons that other sex acts outside of Holy Matrimony are sinful. Just because a woman is attracted to a woman does not make the homosexual act between them not a sin. Likewise, just because a man is attracted to another man’s wife does not make the sex act of that man with that wife not sinful. Even so called “gay marriage” does not eradicate the sin since the marriage is contracted, in part, to make sexual-gratification relationship (one which does not care to generate human life, but seeks gratification for the purpose of pleasure of the two parties ONLY) into a legally-monogamous one.

  2. Good answer FP. The desire of our flesh for another person’s flesh, irrespective of the gender, is lust, not love. Only within the covenant of marriage does the expression “to make love” have real meaning, as without a true, God ordained, God centered love for a marriage partner, you cannot make love in the deeper sense of what it entails. Once one has experienced the difference between the expression of true spiritual love and the gratification of carnal desire, it becomes very apparent. To those who have not experienced the difference, then what they have will perhaps seem like all there is to be had. It is like trying to tell an Atheist about Jesus, when he has already decided there is no God. The sinner cannot conceptualize a sanctified sexual relationship – it would be like trying to explain to a callow youth what it is to make love with a woman when all he has experienced is Mrs Palmer and her five daughters…

    As to Rick Warren’s theology – “No, not because they’re gay,” he said. “We go to Hell because we choose to reject the grace of God.”

    Really? What is this place called hell? Gehenna I know of, and Sheol too, but hell is perhaps the worst misnomer, and the most egregious mistranslation in the Bible. But hell, why change it now? It has worked to keep the wankers on the work wheels for a very long time…which is what it was designed to do, or as Goebbels said, “Propaganda is most effective when the subjects think that they acting according to their own will.”

  3. Both of your posts were great reading!

    But to be honest it took me a while to know who Mrs Palmer was!
    You have a way with words Ian.

  4. IW, I would like to clarify your statement, ” The desire of our flesh for another person’s flesh, irrespective of the gender, is lust, not love. ” Let’s be sure not to misunderstand something.

    “Lust” is a capital sin. Natural sexual attraction or desire is not sin. Sexual attraction is normal and good and necessary as well as that pleasure which goes with the natural sexual relations between heterosexual spouses who are joined in Holy Matrimony.

    “Lust” is defined as “disordered desire for or inordinate enjoyment of sexual pleasure.” Also, “sexual pleasure is morally disordered when sought for itself, isolated from its procreative and unitive purposes.” [CCC, #2351]

    The “procreative and unitive” function of sexual relations (including the natural pleasure which it may involve) is blessed within Holy Matrimony.

    Offenses against chastity which involve lust are: masturbation, fornication, pornography, prostitution, and rape [CCC #2351-2356]. Homosexual acts, according to Sacred Scripture, “are condemned as a serious depravity and even presented as the sad consequence of rejecting God.” [cf, “Persona Humana,” with reference to Gen 19:1-29, Rom 1:24-27; 1 Cor 6:10, 1 Tim 1:10].

    “This judgment of Scripture does not of course permit us to conclude that all those who suffer from this anomaly [same-sex attraction] are personally responsible for it, but it does attest to the fact that homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered and can in no case be approved of.” [cf, Persona Humana, VIII, 29 Dec 1979 and CCC #2358, 1997]

  5. Why is that? Because there is nothing of value to be had for the human body by eating icecream, other than the pure pleasure of it, and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. Therefore, having sex, simply for the sheer pleasure of it, with no intention of creating a family, is most definitely fine as well.

  6. Eating icecream to the point of gluttony would be a sin, but thats not normally how people eat icecream. We also generally leave it up to the individual to regulate their own icecream consumption and its not normally a subject of sermons or discussion.

    I wonder if Rick Warren’s stance has softened since the death of his son. I know from my own experience that a death in your family can focus your mind on what is really important. You can be a expert on what other people should do – until the ups and downs of life hit you with a few more downs. Then you realise that everyone is trying to do the best they can.

    Not that there isnt evil and sin, its just that things get put into perspective.

  7. Well, if I went into my neighbour’s house and stole his ice-cream, that might be considered sin, not because of the ice-cream, or my desire for ice-cream gratification, but because it wasn’t mine to take.

    So adultery and fornication could be seen as covetousness and sin.

    I don’t see an analogy between ice-cream and homosexuality, unless two ice-creams attempted to devour each other. That would be considered weird.

    The thing is, though, that Paul actually singles out copulation as a different kind of action to eating ice-cream.

    1 Corinthians 6
    13 Foods for the stomach and the stomach for foods, but God will destroy both it and them. Now the body is not for sexual immorality but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body.

    So there is a separation made between ice-cream and sex. He goes on…

    14 And God both raised up the Lord and will also raise us up by His power.
    15 Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ? Shall I then take the members of Christ and make them members of a harlot? Certainly not!
    16 Or do you not know that he who is joined to a harlot is one body with her? For “the two,” He says, “shall become one flesh.”

    OK, so copulation makes us one flesh with the person we have sex with, so it’s about more than mere pleasure or gratification, there is also a connection of the soul or spirit with the person we are copulating with.

    17 But he who is joined to the Lord is one spirit with Him.

    So if we are joined to Christ, and we join ourselves with another person in sexual intercourse, we are violating Christ and our un ion with Him, unless we are engaging in sexual intercourse within marriage, which is holy and undefiled.

    18 Flee sexual immorality. Every sin that a man does is outside the body, but he who commits sexual immorality sins against his own body.

    So there is the difference outlined, so we are are in no doubt about the implications.

    19 Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own?
    20 For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s.

  8. I dont think Paul necessarily singles out illicit sex from other sins of the body in verse 13 as you argue.

    The full quote is

    12 “I have the right to do anything,” you say—but not everything is beneficial. “I have the right to do anything”—but I will not be mastered by anything. 13 You say, “Food for the stomach and the stomach for food, and God will destroy them both.” The body, however, is not meant for sexual immorality but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body

    I think he was making an argument against those in Corinth that said that it was their bodies – they could do whatever they wanted with them, as God would destroy them anyway.

    So he was saying that personal immorality could still control someone , and was telling people to flee that immorality. I think he used the example of sex because it was (and still is ). The one that trips us up the most.

    But there is no intrinsic difference in kind.

  9. Well, he gives more than one distinction, if you read it carefully, especially at verse 18.

  10. 16 If you see any brother or sister commit a sin that does not lead to death, you should pray and God will give them life. I refer to those whose sin does not lead to death. There is a sin that leads to death. I am not saying that you should pray about that. 17 All wrongdoing is sin, and there is sin that does not lead to death. (1 John 5)

    9 Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, 10 nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God. (1 Cor 6)

    Join the dots Rick. And while you’re at it, read up on why no-one is going to heaven!!

  11. Greg the Explorer – sin is already well-defined and I’m not sure what you were trying to get across to me.

  12. Sin, in practice, is never very well defined.

    Is it sinful to eat an ice-cream cone? What about a whole tub of ice-cream? At what point as you eat the ice-cream tub does it become a sin?

    Is kissing before marriage sinful? What about with tongues – does that make you one flesh? What about sucking fingers? Toes? Oral sex? Etc.

    If a committed couple have sex 1 hour before their marriage ceremony are they committing a sin? What about the couple who were committed to purity, and even though they werent totally sure about the marriage they couldnt control their desires so decide to marry rather than be in sin? Are they to be congratulated and the earlier couple to be counselled for their sinful ways?

    Sin is related to morality, and morality is never a black and white follow the rules type of deal, no matter how much we would wish it to be.

  13. No. Fort all of wazza’s edgy hypotheticals, sin is well enough defined, Biblically. It is far more obscure to those who have allowed themselves to be conditioned to a liberal, amoral world view.

    It is summed up in two commands, to love the Lord God with all our heart, mind and being, and to love our neighbour as ourself.

    Whatever breaks or compromises these is sin.

    Sexual sin is called a sin against the sinner’s own body, and against the Body of Christ.

    But the sin which separates men from God under the New Testament is the sin of unbelief in Christ as Lord. This is what condemns.

  14. By the way, wazza, if you have to ask ‘is it sin’ it probably is. You can’t moralise according to secular, human standards. The attempt here is to make an obvious sin into an acceptable practice and, therefore, create a scenario by which people can get their own way against God’s understood will.

    Greg wants to redefine sin to fit his worldview. The reverse is the reality. We take God’s Word and make our lifestyle fit His will, not the other way round.

  15. Is it a sin to manipulate Christians into giving money through motivational speeches, taking scripture out of context, illusory clams of blessings etc?

    I had to ask so it probably is.

  16. God’s not offended by our sin.

    If Jesus was offended by sin He’d have spent His whole life being offended with everyone He met.

  17. No. Fort all of wazza’s edgy hypotheticals, sin is well enough defined, Biblically.

    By the way, wazza, if you have to ask ‘is it sin’ it probably is

    Kissing before marriage is not really a hypothetical situation is it? So I gather because I asked whether it was a sin, that you think it probably is?

  18. Dear, dear, wazza and Bones! You’re both just being facetious.

    If you can’t work it out by now, it probably means you don’t get it.

    How long have you been Christians? If it was two weeks I could understand your lack of understanding, but if it’s more than ten years, you are probably in rebellion against truth over some moral issue you can’t reconcile with the Word.

    It happens, and none of us knows it all, or even a fraction of what God knows, but being stupid with your comments doesn’t help your cause.

  19. So, Bones, are you saying it’s OK to sin?

    If not, why not?

    If so, what is the point of the New Testament?

  20. Again my questions are met with silence.

    Even if God is not offended by our sin, it is true that our sin separates us from Him, and we are called the children of disobedience, for whom His wrath is reserved.

    So it’s true, on the one hand, to say that God loved us so much that He sent Jesus to pay the price of our sin at the cross, but it’s also true that our sin still separates us from Him unless we accept His free pardon and forgiveness, which are offered through grace and received by faith.

    It is true that we are all forgiven through the cross, but also true that we need to repent and receive that forgiveness.

    But I ask, forgiveness from what? And what w it that Jesus paid for at the cross? And what was it that was levelled against us? It was condemnation through the law for sin. And that was for Israel. The Gentiles were not even considered for redemption, being aliens to God. But,through cross, God brought them together, and, through the cross, forgiveness was offered, because, through the cross, our sin, and their sin was paid for, and we were forgiven.

    What else is there to do, then, but to acknowledge our sinfulness, accept the work of the cross, and salvation, through faith in Jesus Christ?

    But, if we do not receive Christ, we reject God’s grace, we reject the cross, we reject Christ, and we reject salvation. The only way to reject Christ is through unbelief – a refusal to receive God’s grace through faith in His Son.

    Many have rejected Him. That is the truth. And they will die in their sins. An always has consequences. The only way clear of any sin whatsoever is through the blood of Christ. No works will do it. No payment will do it. No amount of penance will do it. Not even being good will do it.

    It is only through faith in the Son we can be saved from sin.

  21. Perhaps these words of Jesus will help you.

    John 8:21-30
    Then Jesus said to them again, “ I am going away, and you will seek Me, and will die in your sin. Where I go you cannot come.”
    So the Jews said, “Will He kill Himself, because He says, ‘ Where I go you cannot come ’?”
    And He said to them, “ You are from beneath; I am from above. You are of this world; I am not of this world. Therefore I said to you that you will die in your sins; for if you do not believe that I am He, you will die in your sins.”
    Then they said to Him, “ Who are You?”
    And Jesus said to them, “ Just what I have been saying to you from the beginning. I have many things to say and to judge concerning you, but He who sent Me is true; and I speak to the world those things which I heard from Him.”
    They did not understand that He spoke to them of the Father.
    Then Jesus said to them, “ When you lift up the Son of Man, then you will know that I am He, and that I do nothing of Myself; but as My Father taught Me, I speak these things. And He who sent Me is with Me. The Father has not left Me alone, for I always do those things that please Him.” As He spoke these words, many believed in Him.

  22. I put it to you that you cannot answer the question “Is kissing before marriage a sin?” in a definitive way (because it is not well defined).

    If you could, you would say “Of course it is/isnt….” Instead of speculating on my spiritual state.

  23. What is this? A test of who knows how to devise smart-alec, dim-witted hypotheticals? I have no problem working out your pathetic attempt at a riddle! It’s so blazingly obvious I bypassed it to question your motives.

    It’s a typical position for you, though, wazza. Throw as much doubt about as you can and completely forget about what is concrete. If everyone lived on the fringes of spiritual rationality as much as you do they’d all be full of doubt, just like you.

    How on earth will you ever solve problems by Scriptural or spiritual means if you can’t even think like a well-reasoned saint without trying to stumble yourself on nonessential, illogically pretentious nonsense?

    The only sin which is of any consequence is that outlined by Jesus – the sin of unbelief. As he says to those who doubted him when he walked the earth, “You are from beneath; I am from above. You are of this world; I am not of this world. Therefore I said to you that you will die in your sins; for if you do not believe that I am He, you will die in your sins.”

    That just about answers everything discussed on this site for the last few weeks.

    Now you will have to make a decision about whether you believe Jesus said this or not, because if he did you, and others here, will have to seriously reconsider your understanding of Scripture.

    As for kissing before marriage, well who actually gives a rip? Apart from the couple in love, that is. Good God, I hope they are so far in love they have to have strong, vigilant parents, pat ors and Christian friends to keep them safely apart until their wedding night. If they have no passion for one another in the weeks before their marriage I would strongly advise them to think again.

    What are we dealing with here? Religious morons?

  24. I just got a cartoon vision of wazza sitting on a fence with a massive dark category five cyclone front looming and fast approaching from behind him, asking Greg, sitting next to him, if he thinks his paper plane will fly in the calm before the storm.

    Talk about majoring on minors!

    Talk about asking all the wrong questions!

    Isn’t it amazing, though, when a discussion on the important issue of sin and consequence deteriorates into wazza’s pointless peripheral thinking on something as ‘edgy’ as kissing before marriage, which I thought I’d answered, by the way.

    Oh, I know. It’s prosecution lawyer time. “Yes or no answer. Is it a sin to kiss before marriage? The whole case rests on this piece of crucial information.”

    “No, your honour. It is not a sin to kiss before marriage. Kissing between engaged person’s in love with each other is normal and culturally acceptable, your honour.”

    “The wind is picking up, don’t you think?”

  25. I still dont know if thats your answer (or a character’s speech), but I assume it is.

    A lot of things are normal and culturally acceptable but are still sinful arent they?

    I thought sin was well defined and was not dependant on cultural context…?
    Otherwise we could just move to a different culture and go on with the same behaviour.

    I’m afraid you are not doing a lot to convince me that sin is a well-defined concept.

    But I will press on…. It is a sin to kiss someone who you are not engaged to, or even who you are not in love with?

  26. Is it a sin to write a letter, wazza? That’s about the level of your facetious line of questioning, and it’s totally irrelevant to the post and thread.

    But to help you along and give you room for thought. Jesus once criticised a party host for not greeting him with a kiss.

    Luke 7:45
    You gave Me no kiss, but this woman has not ceased to kiss My feet since the time I came in.

    If you miss out on kissing some people it will be eternally detrimental to you.

    Psalms 2:12
    Kiss the Son, lest He be angry,
    And you perish in the way,
    When His wrath is kindled but a little.
    Blessed are all those who put their trust in Him.

    The Shulamite woman in Song of Solomons was quite keen on kissing.

    Song of Songs 1:2-4
    Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth —
    For your love is better than wine.
    Because of the fragrance of your good ointments,
    Your name is ointment poured forth;
    Therefore the virgins love you.
    Draw me away!

    So here are three examples which suggest not kissing is more of an offense than kissing.

    Or maybe you simply have an issue with kissing which is not reflected Biblically. Didn’t anyone kiss you as a baby?

  27. So, wazza, now that we’ve dealt with the kissing issue, do you agree that Jesus said the following.

    “You are from beneath; I am from above. You are of this world; I am not of this world. Therefore I said to you that you will die in your sins; for if you do not believe that I am He, you will die in your sins.”

    Which gives us the information that the sin of not believing that Jesus is the Christ will cause people to die in their sins, that is, every ther sin besides that of unbelief.

    He also talks about a place beneath and a place above, and that those who die in thir sins would not go to be where he is going.

  28. But you have to feel for wazza, though, don’t you, because he wouldn’t know if his kissing was appropriate or not, by the sound of it. I can help, though, and it is a simply solved problem for him.

    I am assuming, of course, that he’s married, but the simple solution would be to ask his own wife what appropriate kissing would be. I’m very sure she’ll be very happy to tell him in no uncertain terms.

    Some things don’t require any scripture at all to be sorted. Common sense and nature will tell you. And it has nothing to do with cultural defines either.

    Some people have this major need to legalise everything in the name of liberality. Strange that.

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