The Innate Sin within Us

We are all innately sinful. That is what the story of the fall teaches us.

I find something incredibly refreshing in the stories of gay and lesbian brothers and sisters in Christ. Dr. Rosario Butterfield, David Bennett, Sam Alberry and others have had truly inspirational journeys in their Christian faith. I find unique comfort and encouragement in their stories.

With that said, I’m going to be unusually candid in this piece: I’m a heterosexual male. But that is not the candid part. I have struggled all my Christian life with heterosexual lust. That’s the candid part.

By the time I became a believer and committed myself to Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior in my very late teens and early twenties, I was very much a product of a society that objectifies sex, obsesses about sex and worships sex.

But, to be honest, I am not just a product of my environment. Attraction to women is innate in me. All of my life, as far back as I can remember, I have been attracted to girls. My first crushes are some of my earliest memories going back to even to preschool and kindergarten.

When I became a Christian, I began to recognize that the extent of the attraction, and the extent to which I fed the attraction, was unhealthy. In fact, it was sinful at the core. Jesus says if we even look at a woman lustfully, we have sinned.

The sin of sexual lust was ingrained deep within me. I can’t wholly blame the environment in which I grew up for the sinful lust that grew within me, though it was provoked and fed by that environment. The root of that sin grew deeply and innately from the core of my being.

I can only imagine a similar experience with same sex attraction. I understand Lady Gaga’s song, Born This Way, though I didn’t always understand it. While my heterosexual attraction is accepted and even celebrated in the world in which I grew up, my gay and lesbian brothers and sisters have had to labor under a general societal distaste and disdain for their same sex attraction.

When I first heard the assertion that people are born with same sex attraction, I didn’t believe it. It defied biology. It didn’t make common sense to me. I figured it is a deviation from the way things are supposed to be. It’s nuts and bolts.

I have come to realize that maybe people really are “born that way” – like me having an innate attraction to girls as far back as I can remember. I didn’t choose it. It is the way it is.

The thing is that any unhealthy attraction that is over-indulged and idolized is sin. Any inner urging that invites me to think and act contrary to conscience and what I know and understand to be God’s desire for me, if I indulge it or act on it, is sinful. I fight the struggle every day.

Continue reading “The Innate Sin within Us”

Born This Way


I took the phrase for this article from an interview with Dr. Rosario Butterfield. The context is homosexuality. For years, the gay community has been telling the world that they are born with same sex desire. People refuted that in the beginning. I think it is more or less accepted as factual now. I realize that I may lose some Christian friends at this point, but I hope you stick around.

I realize that what I am about to say might turn away my non-Christian friends, and even some of my Christian friends. I hope you will look past my next statement and keep reading too. The Bible is pretty clear that acts of same gender sex are sin (along with sexual lust, sexual exploitation, sex with multiple partners, sex outside of marriage, adultery, etc.)

It only seems right, now, that I offend everyone. I say that only somewhat tongue in cheek. But here goes – We are all sinners.

Before I lose everyone, think about it: do you not at times of brutal, personal honesty feel as though you are just not quite right? I suppose the brutal honesty comes in the form of thinking that those around you are just not quite right. (That is an easier conclusion to reach for most of us.) Something is just off.

Things are not the way any of us think they ought to be.

Most of us have come to accept that “this” is just the way it is. “This” is normal, and, indeed it is normal! What we know, what we all know, is the normal state of man – this not-quite-rightness.

Depending on how we view the world, we focus on certain aspects of not-quite-rightness. Some focus on homosexuality, the “attack” on the family and abortion. Others focus on threats against the right to bear arms, business and the erosion of capitalism. Others focus on the damage we do to the environment, cruelty to animals and economic disparities. Many focus on the cruelty of war, the barbarism of torture and over-aggression of police forces. Racism, greedy capitalism, domestic abuse, child abuse, adulterous affairs that ruin marriages, child neglect, the over-sexualization of women, oppression of women, human tracking, pornography, dams on our rivers, phosphates in our waters, dark clouds of pollution spewing into the air, dictators oppressing entire nations, drunk drivers, flaws in the legal system that leave people without justice – something is not quite right with the world.

We tend to feel of ourselves that we are better, or at least not as bad, as many, if not most, people. We have primarily good intentions. We do not generally wish people harm. We try not to hurt people, but sometimes we do. Sometimes, in spite of our best intentions, we are unkind, say things we should not say and do things we should not do.

If you stop and really think about it, there are all sorts of things we should do, but don’t. If all the people in the world did things we should be doing, we would eliminate poverty and war and all kinds of troubles. We tend to think that we are not part of the problems in the world, and we probably are not, directly. When we look at the “World”, we tend to compare pretty well. If we look only at ourselves very long, we see there are places that we fall short, even in spite of those feelings of good intentions.

Why is that?

We were born into this not-quite-rightness, and we are part of the not-quite-rightness. We are each not-quite-right ourselves.

Be honest now. Do you do all the things you know you should do? Do you never do things you know you should not do? Even if you do not subscribe to a “Christian” moral code, do you keep your own moral code? Does the world live up to it? If you have read this far, you must admit that the world is not quite right.

I am not quite right, and I have never been quite right. I have never succeeded at being the person I thought I was and thought I should be. I am just being honest.

I know I am not alone in that (though I might have once thought so). I figured out somewhere along the way that others are not quite right as well – whether they see it or admit it. (Think “plank in my eye” analogy here.)

We are “born this way.” I was born with a very strong will, a strong infatuation for girls, a strong competitive instinct and a strong desire for comfort. In my life I have had to face that I am selfish, lustful, jealous, unkind, quick to anger and just plain lazy. I am not being hard on myself; I am just being honest.

I was born that way.

But there is hope! The story of Dr. Rosario Butterfield brings me to tears, because it is my story; and I am grateful.

That same hope took hold of me many years ago, and I just want the world to know that there is glorious, beautiful, life-changing hope in the person of Jesus Christ who was God shedding his position of power and detachment to become one of us. He showed that He cares and that He understands in being willing to suffer and die for us. He showed that there is hope for us in rising again  to conquer sin and death.

God so loved the world that He gave his only begotten son…. that we might live.

You can find the living reality of that love and the hope He gives in the story and life of Dr. Rosario Butterfield: