Elton John may have been given the title of Sir, but he probably won’t be called a theologian any time soon. Sir Elton has decided, and proclaimed publicly, that Jesus was a homosexual. The seemingly divisive statement has united all sides in agreement of one thing – Elton should stick to singing. However, what I find surprising, is that much of what Elton said about Jesus was actually accurate.
Here is what Elton told Parade magazine:
“I think Jesus was a compassionate, super-intelligent gay man who understood human problems. On the cross, he forgave the people who crucified him. Jesus wanted us to be loving and forgiving. I don’t know what makes people so cruel. Try being a gay woman in the Middle East – you’re as good as dead.” – Elton John
First off, I think it is worth pointing out that much of what Elton John said about Jesus is right. Not bad for a guy who, a couple of years ago, said all religions should be banned. His two big errors are the gay comment and his use of the term “was” instead of recognizing that Christ is still alive today. Other than those two words, I agree with much of Elton’s comments.
Here’s where I agree: Jesus is compassionate. He is wise. Jesus does understand human problems. He also, in fact, did forgive those who crucified Him. Moreover, Jesus also wants us to be loving and forgiving. There is Scripture to back all those things up. Here are a couple of examples:
When Jesus saw the crowds, he had compassion on them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. Matthew 9:36
33 When they came to the place called the Skull, there they crucified him, along with the criminals–one on his right, the other on his left. 34 Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” Luke 23:33-34
In one part of Elton’s statement, he claimed both that Jesus understood human problems and that Jesus was gay. Those statements made me think of one of my favorite verses in Scripture.
Jesus, when on earth, was tempted in every way that we are. He understands all that we go through. He understands the struggles of both heterosexuals and homosexuals. Yet, Jesus at no point fell into sin. He was totally obedient to the will of God. And I know it’s not popular to say, but Scripture clearly teaches giving in to homosexual urges is a sin. Jesus loves homosexuals, and He died for homosexuals, but He at no point lived that lifestyle or promoted it.
Many in the gay community understand that Elton’s comments don’t help their cause.
Reverend Sharon Ferguson from the Lesbian and Gay Christian Movement told ABC News:
“I don’t think that comments like this are particularly helpful. He (Jesus) challenged our understanding of loving one another in his relationship with his disciples and friends, so we should be taking on board the total inclusivity of Christ when it comes to the notion of sexual identity and orientation but that does not mean that we should make any assumptions about Christ’s sexual activity or lack of it.”
I think most of us can agree that Elton John’s assumptions about Christ’s sexual activity are beyond silly. Obviously he said them just to get a rise out of people. However, I hope more people understand some of what Elton, at least partially realizes. Jesus Christ offers both love and forgiveness for those who would seek Him. And Jesus understands what we are going through.
Finally, Elton reminded us that Jesus wants us to forgive others. Sir Elton is right. And many of those Christians angered by Elton’s statement need to remember the words of Jesus.
If you’re angry with Elton John, instead of bashing him – let’s forgive him.
Besides being a regular writer for NewsReal Blog and an entrepreneur, Paul Cooper is a full-time pastor of a Southern Baptist Church.