First there was Ted Haggard, now George Rekers. How should we as Christians deal with homosexuality, especially when our revered leaders engage in this sin? 


I believe we must abandon the notion that there are degrees of sin.  ALL OF US ARE SINNERS!  Homosexuality is no worse a sin that drunkeness, lustfulness, or lying (to name a few).  Having said that, I am NOT condoning homosexuality.  What I'm most concerned about is how we as followers of Christ treat those who have a tendency toward the gay lifestyle.  Are our judgmental attitudes keeping them from learning about Jesus, who is the ONLY way to eternal life? 


Let's take a look at "Rent Boy" .  What led him to his current lifestyle and profession?  Was he exploited when he was young?  Perhaps he was molested as a little boy and never given professional counseling.  Do we REALLY believe God is in the business of transforming lives through Jesus Christ? 


Have  you ever wondered about Rent Boy's given name?  It's so important that we view him as a human being who is in need of a Savior (just like we are).  Actually, he has a wonderful name, Jo-Vanni Roman, although he calls himself "Lucien".  As a mother of a daughter who is Jo-Vanni's age, my heart breaks for him.  Has he ever been loved unconditionally?  I try to imagine how Jesus would interact with him…   


Rekers obviously needs help, too.  Has he been struggling with homosexual urges for much of his life?  Was he sexually abused?  We believe Rekers has been hiding his secret sin for a long time.  Just imagine the pain and confusion his wife and children must feel. 


Here are our questions:


What is it about the church that makes us fear confessing our sins, especially homosexuality?


Jesus has called each and every one of His children to seek and to save the lost.  How should we go about reaching the gay community?  Since Christians are often labeled "homophobes", we haven't been doing a very good job of sharing our faith with this segment of the community. 


The internet is a fantastic communication / research tool, and there are some excellent resources that can offer assistance to those desiring to come out of this lifestyle. 


According to its web site, EXODUS INTERNATIONAL is "the largest information and referral ministry in the world addressing homosexual issues".   We recommend that our readers familiarize themselves with this ministry in case they need to refer someone to it for help.  Here's the link:


Please check out Exodus International's blog post on Rekers and Jo-Vanni Roman, which can be found at the following web address:


The post begins as follows:
'It is being reported widely  throughout the media that Dr. George Rekers, husband, father, NARTH Board Member, scholar, theologian and Baptist minister (to name just a few of the highlights), confirmed that he hired a 20 year-old man to accompany him on a 10-day European mission trip and extended vacation. As it turns out, that young man happens to be a prostitute. And while there has been no allegation of sexual misconduct, Dr. Rekers actions, at best, lacked an enormous amount of discernment. At worst, he is guilty of leading a double life.  

Despite the familiar human desire to throw the stone in my hand at Dr. Rekers, I cannot. He is a human who seems to have made a mistake…"


One of our commenters has brought to our attention the ministry of Tim Wilkins, who once engaged in homosexuality and now ministers to those desiring to leave the gay lifestyle.


Tim's testimony begins as follows:

" 'Up on your feet so I can knock you down again!' I stood horrified in the middle of our circular hallway as my father shouted those words at my mother who lay at his feet. He had just knocked her to the living room floor. My parents' altercation had awakened me in the middle of the night.

This was one of my earliest memories as a five or 6-year-old child. I believe I unconsciously made a promise that moment, I–will–not–be–like–that–man! Thus began my rejection of masculinity and embracing of homosexuality."


To read the rest of Tim's incredible testimony, go to this link:  http://www.crossministry.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=50&Itemid=54 


Tim Wilkins, who earned his undergraduate degree from Gardner Webb University and his Masters of Divinity from Southwestern Seminary, has served as a music and preaching evangelist, pastor of two churches, and is the founder/director of Cross Ministry, Inc.  


Wlkins has created a conference called "MORE THAN WORDS which focuses on walking (versus talking) people out of homosexuality.  MORE THAN WORDS has been conducted across the United States among various denominations. This one or multi day conference addresses such topics as If a Friend Says "I'm gay", Debunking the "Gay Gene", "What's a Parent to Do?", Untwisting "Gay Theology", Counseling the Homosexual, Preventing Homosexuality, and A Biblical Bridge Out of Homosexuality. MORE THAN WORDS has gained international attention. Of note, a documentary film team from The Netherlands flew to the United States to videotape the conference and interview Wilkins; this documentary has been televised in The Netherlands."    

You can find all of this information at the following link: 



We hope and pray these resources will be of benefit to those who are trapped in the homosexual lifestyle.     



  1. Cross Ministries! That’s it. I could not remember the name. I see things posted by them from time to time and they really appear to be balanced.

    I did not know the guy that traveled with Dr. Rekers was 20 years old. Given the man’s profession, it still has all the problems that you mention. But the name “RentBOY” is probably not correct, and is inflammatory. I got the impression that the person was in their early or mid teens.

    I am sure that “Rentboy” must be a term in the profession that applies to these type people, even if they are adults. So, using the term is fine, but the person’s age should be noted, too, as you have done.

  2. anonymous,

    Thanks for mentioning Tim Wilkins in your previous comment. I read his testimony and was shocked by what he experienced as a child. It just goes to show what can happen when a young boy doesn’t receive fatherly affection.

    “Rentboy” isn’t something I made up. Personally, I find it terribly offensive. FYI — it’s the name of the web site where Rekers found Jo-Vanni Roman’s “advertisement” as an escort.

    Check out this statement in a recent Miami Herald article (link provided):

    “Rekers said he learned of Roman’s travel services through “acquaintances.” Roman says Rekers hired him after viewing his seminude photos on Rentboy.com, a gay-sex website.”

    Read more: http://www.miamiherald.com/2010/05/08/1619272/rentboy-escort-i-gave-sexual-massages.html#ixzz0nkoJnqgg

    Thanks for your comment.

  3. Anonymous
    Ditto with what Deb said. We must look beyond the labels and see the person that God loves. I am praying that this situation will lead Jo-Vanni to find love and support in a well-balance Christian community.May there be some Christian who wish to reach out to him.In fact, if anyone is reading this and knows of such an effort to reach out to Jo-Vanni, please let us know. Does anyone have any ideas of how to go about such a thing?

    Dr. Rekers most likely has an issue that he has been struggling with for years. Maybe, this is God telling him to seek the help he needs.

    The saddest part about all of this is the response of some Christians who are shocked by Rekers. As a community, we must never, ever forget that all of us are capable of sin. We must be careful not to treat one sin as being more worth of derision that others.

    Thank you for reading our blog and taking the time to comment. It is appreciated.

  4. Deb and Dee:

    Thanks for the response. I know that you guys did not make up the “Rentboy” term, but I appreciate your including his age, which gives it some context.

    Dee, I suspect that you are correct about Dr. Rekers, but I don’t know.

    I enjoy your blog, and appreciate the kind words.

    Take care.

  5. Dear Deb and Dee,

    Thank you so much for this sensitive and thoughtful post addressing a topic that the church by and large deals very badly with. This is something incredibly close to my heart because I would be one of “those” Christians who was abused as a child and have struggled with homosexual feelings all my life so far.

    Sadly my experience with sharing and trying to seek help in church hasn’t gone so well – and ended up with my being thrown out of an SGM church I attended here in England (the leaders “suspected” that I was living an active sinful sexual lifestyle). So I tended to keep my head very much below the radar and hope no Christian asked the question as to why I was still single at 32.

    I have got a real passion for seeing attitudes change on this – because I couldn’t agree MORE with your comment;

    “Jesus has called each and every one of His children to seek and to save the lost. How should we go about reaching the gay community? Since Christians are often labeled “homophobes”, we haven’t been doing a very good job of sharing our faith with this segment of the community”.

    I’ve grown up in Christian circles all my life and to be quite frank most churches terrify me – should they find out what I am. So I dread to think what most non-Christian gay people think of churches. Well – actually I know what most non-Christian gay people think of Christians! And it isn’t very complementary!

    There seems to be two choices here in the UK (not so sure about the USA). You either chose to go to a gay-open church that ignores the passages of Scripture that teach that sex is for a married man and woman. Or you hide because of the attitudes of suspicion and fear that most orthodox churches display towards homosexuality.

    Ironically the church I was thrown out of was called “Grace” church!

    Thanks again – it really, really heartens me to know that other Christians feel the same and are thinking through ways to reach the gay community – after all they need the gospel as much as the next person! My last post on my blog; “Speak tenderly to my bride” is a bit of a rant against this harsh, judgemental legalism that comes from so many church leaders.

  6. Dan

    I read your comment with tears in my eyes. Would it offend you if we posted your comment tomorrow as our Friday post?

    A number of years ago I listened to a talk by a doctor who is a member of Christian Medical Dental Society. He said something that I have never forgotten. He asserted that Christians seem to be more intent on converting people from homosexuality to heterosexuality than converting people from unbelief to a saving belief in Jesus Christ. He, a celibate homosexual, said that the Holy Spirit then works in the person’s life to encourage, uphold and convict.

    You have opened my eyes to the difficult and unacceptable choice that you face in churches. Either a disapproving “orthodox Christian” church or the “gay-open, unorthodox” church. May I venture to say that neither of these churches are behaving Christianly.

    As for the SGM church that threw you out, I have one thing to say. These churches are filled with power hungry, Scripturally lacking abusers who will one day stand before God. And I wonder if many of them are Christians. They may be, as my current pastor says, “religionists”. I only wished you lived near us. I know the perfect church for you.

    Here is a call to all reading this blog. Are there any churches in the UK that would be good for Dan?

    Dan, could you share your blog with our readership? If you would rather not, could you share it with me? Please contact me at dee@thewartburgwatch.com. Please know my prayers are with you. You have much to teach the church.

    Blessings to you

  7. Dan,

    I am very touched by your heartfelt comments. I hope the two web sites included in this post will be of help to you and others who are struggling with their sexuality (both men and women).

    I agree with you. The evangelical church has done an extremely poor job of reaching out and ministering to the gay community. I can’t imagine Jesus castigating this segment of society. If we are to emulate Christ, I believe we should demonstrate unconditional love in an effort to win them over.

    Dan, please know that I’ll be praying for you.

  8. Dan,

    Thanks for your comments. I wish you the best. Tim Wilkins with Cross Ministries in NC has some good things to say.

    Keep up the fight. We all struggle with something. You have a tougher struggle than most.

    I wish you the best.

  9. I’m struggling with what to say here–mostly because my thoughts about this subject are in flux. I came out of SGM’s mothership CLC–and am now in an Anglican church that has both gay and straight members and clergy. I do have friends in committed gay relationships, some with children. I’d rather err on the side of love (as in 1st Corinthians 13)–and say, “Welcome, friend, Jesus loves you, just the way you are!” and let the Holy Spirit convict or confirm as needed. I’m also not convinced that homosexuality comes from dysfunction (abuse, absent fathers, cold mothers, or whatever).

  10. Every one of us hides our sins — sadly, it’s when sin becomes public that the church begins to throw stones. When someone is living in a terrible marriage, but keeping it secret, there’s no criticism. But if they make what has already occurred in their marriage into a legality (divorce) and it’s public knowledge, watch out. I’ve heard it said that the church is the army that shoots its own wounded.

  11. acme,

    I have to be completely transparent with my position on homosexuality. Although I believe with all my heart that we as Christians must seek and save the lost and show compassion to those in the gay community, I have a problem with gay clergy. I do not believe they are qualified to lead.

    Furthermore, I believe practicing homosexuals should always be welcome in church; however, my position is that in order to become a member of a congregation they should remain celibate.

    Openness is one of the hallmarks of The Wartburg Watch, and this is my honest response.

    Thanks for your comment.

  12. Acme:

    I agree with you. I have not found that homosexuality always comes from abuse etc.

    I also agree with your comment about loving other people.

    The problem comes when one begins to take the teachings of the Bible seriously. It is fairly easy to select various verses from the Bible and avoid others. If that is done, there is no tension.

    But if one takes the Bible at face value, especially in its historical context – the Greco/Roman world, where homosexuality was not only permitted but celebrated in some ways, one cannot escape the fact that homosexual behavior is spoken against.

    Again, we can do all we possibly can to let all people know that they are loved, but when it comes to instruction and helping them to know Christ and become better disciples, this issue is going to come up.

    Ultimately, our loyalty to Christ and our command to make disciples is going to bring us to say some that may be difficult.

    It just seems that each generation struggles with an area of life that causes the church to be tempted to be less than faithful. In a previous era, it may have been racism.

    In our era, I suppose it might by sexual liberation in whatever form that might take.

    The challenge for the church is to remain true and not let the spirit of the age warp the message.

    At least that’s the way I see it.

  13. acme,

    I have to be completely transparent with my position on homosexuality. Although I believe with all my heart that we as Christians must seek and save the lost and show compassion to those in the gay community, I have a problem with gay clergy. I do not believe they are qualified to lead.

    Furthermore, I believe practicing homosexuals should always be welcome in church; however, my position is that in order to become a member of a congregation they should remain celibate.

    Openness is one of the hallmarks of The Wartburg Watch, and this is my honest response.

    Thanks for your comment.

  14. Bruce
    Did you intend to copy and paste Deb’s comment?

    I agree with her but want to make one small qualification. I believe that celibate homosexuals are qualified to lead as pastors and I know that she would agree with me on this.

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