Huh? Grace Bible Church says condemning gay “lifestyle” not discrimination
Responding to anger over Sunday’s anti-gay sermon, the Grace Bible Church insists that its condemnation of same-sex relationships is not discriminatory.
The Soweto church became embroiled in a social media frenzy on Sunday after Idols SA judge Somizi Mhlongo walked out of a sermon by Ghanaian evangelist Dag Heward-Mills who called homosexuality “unnatural”.
The church’s Pastor Ezekiel Mathole has had the unenviable task of justifying the homophobic talk to the media on Monday morning.
“We don’t discriminate against anyone who is gay, they are welcome to our church,” Mathole told 702’s Eusebius McKaiser.
“It is people’s opinion or choice of their alternative lifestyle to have same-sex relationships. It is their right to do it… Nobody is stopping them,” Mathole said.
He explained that the church’s view, however, is that sexual relationships should only be between a man and a woman who are married. “We take a biblical view that marriage must be male and female,” said Mathole.
The church’s website clearly outlines its position on homosexuality in its ‘statement of faith‘: “With regards to sexual behaviour, we believe in heterosexual relationships between a natural man and a natural woman within the confines of lawful matrimony.”
Grace Bible Church goes on to clarify that, “Adherence to this stated principle of sexual behaviour is an inherent requirement of membership of Grace Bible Church.”
Despite being challenged on the matter, Mathole refused to accept that denying membership to gay people and condemning its homosexual congregants who are in relationships amount to discrimination.
Mathole also told eNCA’s Dan Moyane that, “as a church, we don’t discriminate against gay people and we will never do, and we have never done that”.
He argued that Heward-Mills’ sermon wasn’t targeting only gays and lesbians but others with “lifestyle issues,” such as smokers and promiscuous people.
“There are other people who were smokers who were offended, because he also referred to a lot of lifestyle issues. There are a lot of people who are having multiple partners who were very offended”.
By making these kinds of statements Mathole is perpetuating the view that homosexuality is a “lifestyle” or a bad habit, rather than it being an intrinsic part of a person’s identity.
In his guest sermon at the church on Sunday, Heward-Mills spoke to the crowd on the topic of “Why your soul is important”.
“Just like homosexuality; you don’t have male and male. If you use that reasoning to say homosexuality is not natural… You don’t find two male dogs, two male lions, two male impalas, two male lizards, two male elephants…” he said to cheers from the crowd.
“There’s nothing like that in nature. It’s unnatural,” he insisted, as the audience again clapped and cheered in support.
Headed by Bishop Mosa Sono, the Grace Bible Church is said to have a considerable gay following, including a number of celebrities like Mhlongo and fashion designer David Tlale.
- Facebook Messenger
Well i fail to understand wile a few years ago himself Dr Mathole mentioned how sinful it is being a Homosexual nor being involved in a same sex relationship and David Tlale himself walked out of the sermon.
An again are they telling us that videos that we view of animals themselves having sexual relationships with another male dog and lion are actually lies ???
So if we as LGBTI community if we are not welcomed nor wanted they can bluntly state it rather than pretending that you do not have a problem with it.
On the eyes of the Lord there is no greater sin all sins are equal if i am in sin by being Gay i will be the only one standing in-front of the Lord speaking about my sins.
Heward-Mills who does he think he is God stating and Judging people on how sinful they are living their lives if people are being sinful his JOB is to just lead people into the right direction in life Bishop Mosa sono has never not even a single day has he ever Judged people and that’s a Father who knows the word of God he will guide and show you the way nor rather the right things in life with love and compassion.
We all know the history of Ghana and Homosexuality when they brutally and publicly humiliated a gay couple by hanging them . . . . and also serving a 3 year sentence.
I dont know why the LGBT community insist on th church to accept them. According to th word of God, homosexuality is a sin. They should not be offended wen th man of God preaxhes against it. Its js like prostitution etc. The gospel isnt thr to serve you.its th other way round….and you may not like it. And yes its true as christians we are not to judge, but dont ask us to turn a blind eye…..we all are Gods children n all want to go to heaven and most importantly we all sin differently. Dont shoot th messanger….only those who obey God will be on heaven.