Jennifer Knapp is NOT worthless

Jennifer Knapp has come out of the closet as a lesbian, according to a recent interview with Christianity Today. In 2000, Knapp was at the top of her game as a Christian music artist, and in 2003 she announced that she was stepping away from it all. A lot has changed since then. Knapp has a new album coming out, and she is now talking openly about her homosexuality.

The interview with CT is heart-rending in more ways than one. She reveals that she has been in an 8-year relationship with a same-sex partner and that she no longer attends church. She makes it clear that the Bible’s authority is no longer definitive for her views on homosexuality. In her own words,

“I find myself between a rock and a hard place—between the conservative evangelical who uses what most people refer to as the ‘clobber verses’ to refer to this loving relationship as an abomination, while they’re eating shellfish and wearing clothes of five different fabrics, and various other Scriptures we could argue about. I’m not capable of getting into the theological argument as to whether or not we should or shouldn’t allow homosexuals within our church. There’s a spirit that overrides that for me, and what I’ve been gravitating to in Christ and why I became a Christian in the first place. . . If God expects me, in order to be a Christian, to be able to theologically justify every move that I make, I’m sorry. I’m going to be a miserable failure.”

No doubt there is a “spirit” that “overrides” what the Bible teaches, but it is not the Spirit of Christ—even though she may think that it is.

One other remark particularly caught my attention, and I believe it needs a response. In describing the process of deciding to come out, she says,

“I can’t do this. People are going to chew me up and spit me out and tell me that I’m worthless.”

I don’t know Jennifer Knapp apart from her music. I’m just one of her fans from ten years ago. I’m also someone who believes that the Bible unambiguously marks homosexuality as sin. Nevertheless, I would never say that she is worthless. In fact, I would speak to her this way: You are not worthless. You are a sinner, but you are not worthless. The gospel of Jesus Christ crucified and raised for sinners is still for you if you will have Him. If you will repent of your sin and trust in Christ, He will not cast you out—ever (John 6:37).

Pray for Jennifer Knapp. She’s been walking away from Christ for a long time, but the Lord’s arm is still not too short to save (Isaiah 59:1). I pray that it will reach her soon.

70 Responses to Jennifer Knapp is NOT worthless

  1. Mike N April 14, 2010 at 2:09 am #

    Thank you, Dr. Burk.

    One of the great tests of biblical integrity for this generation, I’m convinced, is our ability to reflect the love of Christ by exercising compassion without being permissive or winking at known sin. This is a test for every generation, of course, but it applies especially to loving homosexual people today.

    I grieve over Jennifer Knapp; not only the content of the interview, but over the stones that will be cast at her and the fact that she will be regarded as many by worthless; that she impoverished herself by understanding theology as little more than hair-splitting and a means of condemnation; her understanding of the Holy Spirit that justifies (rather than convicts of) sin; and her drift away from the Christ who heals the hurts that she has incurred . . . and will incur.

    May God equip us to surprise Jennifer with a response of biblical conviction and compassion that accepts her as created in God’s image but does not turn a blind eye to convictions and decisions that directly contradict God’s design for sexuality . . . as well as the integrity to be willing to look and see if (and where) we fall short ourselves.

  2. Greg Bailey April 14, 2010 at 8:14 am #

    Let us pray for a young lady who has come to believe a lie.

  3. Ali April 14, 2010 at 8:17 am #

    Thanks for commenting on this. It was a news item in the secular news in Australia for some reason!

  4. Ryan April 14, 2010 at 8:23 am #

    Thanks for your thoughts on this…sad for her but more sad about the way she is afraid she will be perceived by Christians. Sad because she is probably right in many cases. Praying for her and for the church. We both need the gospel…thanks again!

  5. Tim Russell April 14, 2010 at 8:38 am #

    Well put. It’s a sad day. Jen is not worthless. Jesus is not powerless. Christians have been foolish about the way we treat the gay world. They need Jesus and repentance but so do we.

  6. Robert Piercy April 14, 2010 at 8:52 am #

    Well said, Denny. I, too, am one of her fans from 10 years ago. I can’t get enough of her music, and I will be praying that the Lord, who is rich in mercy, will open her eyes to the glory of Christ crucified for sinners.

  7. Derek April 14, 2010 at 9:03 am #

    I’m very sad to hear about this- I’ve actually followed her on Twitter and her website the last 6 months because I was looking forward to her musical comeback. I sensed that she was going in a weird direction, but truly didn’t see this coming. Very sad.

    There was such a depth and honesty to Jennifer’s writing and singing – she produced an entire album about the Passion and it was really amazing stuff.

    I’ll be praying that the body of Christ will respond appropriately, wisely and with genuine love.

    Jennifer, we don’t hate you, not by a long shot. We’re sad that you’ve been caught in a pattern of sin that Scripture is not ambiguous or muted about. We pray that God will rescue each of us who claim to be followers of Christ from snares that harm or destroy our relationship with God and one another.

  8. Cindy April 14, 2010 at 9:25 am #

    “If God expects me, in order to be a Christian, to be able to theologically justify every move that I make, I’m sorry. I’m going to be a miserable failure.”

    So sad that so many “come to Christ” and never know the Word. Thus they have never known The Lord.

    As unmistakable as the covenant (old and new) is, so is the command to know God’s Word, follow His Word.

    May all of us in the “body of Christ” Know the Word of the Lord so that we may be found a worker approved. May we “disciple”…teach the Word.

    Many men have been called of God to “preach The Word” but we all have been commanded to teach The Word.

  9. J. Curtis Watson April 14, 2010 at 9:28 am #

    From your post it sounds like you assume J. Knapp is an unbeliever (i.e. “lost”). Though I as you firmly believe that homosexuality is forbidden in scripture, I don’t at all believe that someone can’t be a practicing homosexual and still be a genuine Christian. I too have been a huge fan of Knapp’s music. I saw her perform before my youth group of about 50 people before she garnered all the fame/fortune. What I gleaned from her interview is that she is in a lot of turmoil about her “love” but is trying to still follow Christ. You call for people to pray for her to be “saved.” I agree that she should repent of her sin and stop trying to force it to be compatible with the scripture but I’m not convinced that Christ does not live in her heart. If anything the interview reveals a tormented heart. Just some thoughts love the blog.

  10. Susan April 14, 2010 at 9:37 am #

    I agree with Watson….not all who wander are lost. We have an unrelenting enemy but a victorious Savior. Pray for Jennifer.

  11. Josh April 14, 2010 at 10:27 am #

    Denny,

    I really appreciate your wisdom here. I’ll be praying for her.

    Josh

  12. Darius April 14, 2010 at 10:51 am #

    So sad.

  13. Matt Stokes April 14, 2010 at 10:57 am #

    Very sad, indeed.

    I’m also curious to hear from Derek Webb about all this, as they are touring together soon. How does Webb feel about this, and would he welcome a touring mate who was caught up in some other public sin?

  14. Todd Baucum April 14, 2010 at 11:04 am #

    I had the same heart break over reading this interview, as a fan of her music. How can one who spoke so powerfully about grace in her songs, now live in a way that denies grace and its transforming power over sin? It may be a reflection of what is wrong with the evangelical culture in general. We have separated the Gospel from a covenantal context – the living and abiding community of saints called the Church. Too many Christian artists are snubbing the church in the name of prophetic artistry while claiming that they serve the Body of Christ. Her tragic rejection of the Church and it’s authority in the Word, is a rejection of the only true grace in this world.

  15. Derek April 14, 2010 at 11:40 am #

    I suspect Derek Webb is going to strongly support her.

    Webb’s peculiar statements and behavior over the last couple years is starting to make more sense to me.

  16. marcia April 14, 2010 at 12:56 pm #

    Thanks for posting this.

    I love her and her music. This whole topic is such a struggle for me. I can only imagine what she’s going through.

    I am definitely praying for her.

  17. Darius April 14, 2010 at 1:02 pm #

    Yeah, I noticed that Webb is touring with her. That speaks volumes about where he’s at theologically.

    “How does Webb feel about this, and would he welcome a touring mate who was caught up in some other public sin?”

    Depends on the sin… if it was some artist who came out of the closet and said they hadn’t given any money to fight world hunger, Webb might give them the cold shoulder then. 🙂

  18. Nathan April 14, 2010 at 1:06 pm #

    Jennifer Knapp didn’t and doesn’t make her decisions in vacuum. I’m willing to bet she has taken a considerable amount of time and effort dealing with the issue. If her journey is anything like mine, she probably feels she has been funneled to her current state by desires she doesn’t understand and by bad interaction with a host of people that should’ve helped, but royally screwed up. So, yeah, I think this is a sad situation, but probably for different reasons than the other posters.

  19. David Vinzant April 14, 2010 at 1:09 pm #

    Kudos to Denny for making me aware of this, to CT for the interview, and to Jennifer Knapp for the honesty and courage to come out. I admire anyone coming out of the closet, as it can result in anger, hatred, guilt-trips and condescension from others. For someone like Jennifer Knapp or Ray Boltz, it can also cost them their livelihood. Hurray for another point of light slowly banishing the ignorance and bigotry of ancient superstition!

  20. John Bird April 14, 2010 at 2:03 pm #

    Very good and gracious post.

    We need not make homosexuals feel hopeless; they are no more sinners than the rest of us.

  21. Mark April 14, 2010 at 2:39 pm #

    When I hear these stories my heart feels racked. Not only is Knapp’s story a sad one but I have encountered many people that I had grown up in church with – through junior-high up to university – who supposedly professed a passion and service to Christ that now are either complete faith drop-outs or are barely nominally “Christian.” You would never know, back then, that they would denounce the faith whether in subtle or direct ways. Majority of these cases are not that they have fallen into gross immorality (like homosexual lifestyle) but that they have become indifferent to the things of God and Jesus Christ.

  22. Matt Stokes April 14, 2010 at 3:13 pm #

    Darius: Bingo. I’ve enjoyed Webb’s music, but would he tour with a pro-war, Republican type who was outspoken? Doubt it.

  23. russ April 15, 2010 at 1:39 am #

    I’m with Watson (comment #10). Perplexed by the assumption that Knapp is not a Christian because of this. Am I misinterpreting Denny’s original post? It does sound like that is his assumption/conclusion.

  24. Darius T April 15, 2010 at 6:40 am #

    So Russ, you’re saying that an unrepentant murderer would still be a Christian if they had “made the decision to follow Christ” earlier in life? If not, then it must mean that you consider homosexuality as a special sin unequal to other sins.

  25. Darius T April 15, 2010 at 6:42 am #

    One is NOT a follower of Christ if you won’t follow Him the way He wants you to follow Him.

  26. Derek April 15, 2010 at 9:26 am #

    Jennifer doesn’t have a very nuanced or accurate understanding of what Scripture has to say about homosexuality. She has been taken in by the argument being perpetuated by many in the emergent and liberal camps, i.e. that prohibitions and warnings about homosexuality are only found in obscure corners of the OT Law. For instance, she said:

    I find myself between a rock and a hard place—between the conservative evangelical who uses what most people refer to as the “clobber verses” to refer to this loving relationship as an abomination, while they’re eating shellfish and wearing clothes of five different fabrics, and various other Scriptures we could argue about.

    Jennifer, just to set the record straight – the New Testament has equally strong language about homosexuality. My heart is broken that you have been misled by deceivers and that you are accepting cartoonish interpretations of Scripture. And for the record, I loved your music and was really looking forward to your musical comeback. Now I’m looking forward to and praying for your spiritual comeback.

  27. russ April 15, 2010 at 9:37 am #

    Darius…

    I haven’t said anything about anyone making a decision for Christ, and while I’m not sure that I would characterize one sin as special over another, I don’t believe that all sin is the same in terms of its gravity. And I suppose you don’t either. That’s why you used murder in your example rather than say… greed or gluttony.

    If your post #27 it so be taken on its face and applied as broadly as you have stated it, then I cannot call myself a follower of Christ, and I dare say neither can you.

    However, I do believe it is possible that a Christian in ongoing, sinful defiance could be putting their soul in jeopardy.

    I don’t think Reformed theology would support such a statement.

    It is not my view that I am perplexed by, but rather Denny’s.

  28. Derek April 15, 2010 at 9:50 am #

    Russ,
    One view within the Reformed tribe is that warnings re: apostasy are one of the means of grace. I’m fairly sure that this is the predominant view, though others may wish to correct me here.
    Warnings against apostasy are found throughout Scripture and are compatible with election. Warnings may actually lead to a genuine regeneration if the person is a religious person, for instance. I’ve also heard that warnings are one of the means of grace by which regenerated believers are able to persevere.

  29. Ninna April 15, 2010 at 11:05 am #

    Its so sad how people so easily trade their relationship with Jesus for a fleeting ‘moment’…Will pray for her. She’s still a jewel in His sight.

  30. henrybish April 15, 2010 at 11:13 am #

    I think it is most likely that she is not regenerate but we cannot be certain.

    Of course a Christian can sin and then repent at a later date (David & Bathsheba) but in this case we have a homosexual relationship that has been going on for 8yrs and so it looks very unlikely that she is really born-again.

    I think 1Cor6vs9-10 is the relevant verse:

    Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality… will inherit the kingdom of God.

    Any thoughts?

  31. Darius April 15, 2010 at 11:16 am #

    “If your post #27 it so be taken on its face and applied as broadly as you have stated it, then I cannot call myself a follower of Christ, and I dare say neither can you.

    However, I do believe it is possible that a Christian in ongoing, sinful defiance could be putting their soul in jeopardy.”

    It’s one thing to follow Christ in the weakness of our flesh. It’s another to “follow” Christ while willfully ignoring the parts of what He said that you don’t like. I was talking more along the lines of the “ongoing, sinful defiance” that you mentioned.

    One was never a Christ follower if they eventually reject Him. Perhaps they didn’t have a real understanding of the Gospel originally, or didn’t realize the full implications of Christianity at first, but whatever the case, the “woman of the city” in Luke 7 could not have returned to her prior life once she was renewed.

    God doesn’t put a new heart in us to have it go to waste or take it back. But there are plenty of hangers-on that like some of the benefits of Christianity and will stick around as long as they aren’t asked to leave anything behind. Knapp appears to be one such person, unfortunately. She never counted the cost, or the “cares of this world and the deceitfulness of riches” overwhelmed her.

  32. Nathan April 15, 2010 at 12:46 pm #

    God, step aside, henrybish & Darius are in the house. I’m so glad we have people here that can determine someone’s salvation status.

    Who is the One that knows the names in the book of life? Is it you? Do you really want to push God aside and take over His role as judge? Are you the One that sacrificed your life for Jennifer Knapp? Are you the One that really knows her heart?

  33. David Vinzant April 15, 2010 at 12:50 pm #

    I never cease to be amused/amazed by the strange mental contortions of Calvinists.

  34. henrybish April 15, 2010 at 1:00 pm #

    Nathan,

    my post included the words:

    “we cannot be certain”

    Also, I was just asking for some charitable discussion on this so lets not fall out.

    The fact is sometimes we have to judge as best we can (e.g when admitting a person to church membership) whether that person really is born-again, and if we had to do so with Jennifer Knapp today I was just giving the reasons why I think we should not say that she is born-again.

    I am genuinely interested in a discussion here and am willing to change my view if I’m wrong. Are my reasons really as stupid as you make out to be? If so, why?

  35. henrybish April 15, 2010 at 1:09 pm #

    I’m not claiming infallibility in this judgement, but it just seems that is where the evidence points.

    I think another key passage here is the parable of the 4 soils (Matt 13, Mark4, Luke8) the seed on rocky soil represents those who ‘believe for a while and in time of testing fall away’. So that says to me that someone can appear to be a genuine believer and yet ultimately not be saved. Wouldn’t that explain a lot of situations we come across like this?

    (And you don’t have to be a Calvinist to accept the plain sense and practical implications of that verse (David Vinzant).)

  36. Nathan April 15, 2010 at 1:21 pm #

    Church membership is based on a person’s profession of faith and lifestyle, but not on their actual born-again status.

    Homosexuality is not a litmus test to determine if someone is saved or not. Nothing really is.

    Please don’t get me wrong – telling someone that they are sinning is not judging them in the same way as telling them they are not saved because of the things you hear about the person’s life.

    Also don’t get me wrong – I’m not saying that Jennifer Knapp is in “the club” or out of it. Only God determines that. Only He can, right? IMO, unless and until someone puts in the same effort for sinners that Jesus did (as in sacrifice one’s life to be a servant for others), a person really doesn’t get to judge someone else.

    You can say that you care about me when you tell me that being gay is wrong, but if that is as far as you effort goes, I don’t believe you. If you say that I am not worthless to you and the only thing you do to prove it is point to someone else’s love for me, I don’t believe you.

  37. Nate April 15, 2010 at 1:54 pm #

    I’m not sure how you turned this into a church membership issue Nathan, but your insinuation that a person really doesn’t get to judge someone else is not biblical. Gal 6:1-2 speaks of judging each other. Matt 18:15-17 also speaks of the church’s authority to judge.

    I agree Nathan that love has to be a major contributing reason to go to a brother or sister in sin and speak to them as you stated. However, if the person who is sinning, will only accept toleration of the sin as evidence that you care about them, well, as you said, I won’t believe they really want to evaluate whether they have sin in their lives or not.

  38. henrybish April 15, 2010 at 2:05 pm #

    Nathan,

    So you would admit an openly practicing homosexual (not struggling) into church membership, effectively saying that you think their profession of faith is credible?

    Jesus did not say we must never judge in any circumstances, rather we are to ‘judge with right judgment’ (Jn 7:24).

    I am not trying to prove that I have the same love for Jennifer Knapp as Jesus does. I did not even claim that and of course I fall far short of it. But that does not bar someone from making a biblically informed decision about whether we should understand Jennifer Knapp to be a genuine believer or not. I am not ‘judging’ her in the nasty sense.

    I think that if she is a genuine believer it is inevitable that she will turn away from her current lifestyle at some point, otherwise 1Cor6:9-10 is wrong.

    But given her 8yr relationship I do not think we would be wise in giving her the benefit of the doubt. I could be wrong – Scripture does not specify a time limit between when a believer sins and when they will repent.

  39. Nathan April 15, 2010 at 2:58 pm #

    Nate & henrybish,

    I’ve already said that judging sin is different than judging someone’s salvation. henrybish brought up church membership – I do not equate church membership with true redemption. One does not infer the other. There will be some unregenerate in the membership because they profess to be a Christian and look like it from the outside. There will be some regenerate people removed from the membership because the church judges their behavior to be unbefitting. This does not mean that they lost their salvation or never had it. I do not equate the Scripture that henrybish & Nate referenced as judging someone’s salvation.

  40. Nate April 15, 2010 at 3:17 pm #

    Nathan, Paul writes that a person who is unrepentant of sin, should be cast out of the church and treated as a non-believer. At one level, that is a judgment that they are outside the convenant community of faith. The purpose of this is that they would repent and either come to Christ (because they were never really saved in the first place) or that they acknowledge their sin, turn away from it, and come under the protection and community of the church.

    You are right: Only Jesus will judge our salvation. However one who refuses to repent of sin and ceases to be part of the church (family of God) is in a horribly dangerous place. Heb 6:4-6

  41. Nathan April 15, 2010 at 5:30 pm #

    Nate, I don’t disagree with you.

    I see Statement A below as usurping the role of judge and savior from God. B and C are scriptural:
    A. “Jennifer Knapp isn’t saved or likely not saved. I base this judgment on her 8-year-and-counting stint with homosexuality,”
    B. “Jennifer Knapp is sinning by participating in homosexuality.”
    C. “As part of Jennifer Knapp’s church, we had to remove her from the membership because she did not repent when we confronted her according the church discipline procedures outlined in Matthew.”

    Any confrontation people feel they need to do ought to be done personally and, IMO, probably should come from the membership of her local church.

  42. Mike April 16, 2010 at 8:58 am #

    Much discussion but obviously and quite simply Jennifer needs to meet God. I’m amazed that some see homosexuality as “an issue”. If a person has an encounter with God, THE God, not a god of the imagination, then the “issue” of homosexuality is immediately dispensed with. Along with so many other “issues” in common contention. Like many contributors to this forum, I shall pray for Jennifer. I pray that she will seek Him through His Word, and not through worldly “wisdom”.

  43. andy April 16, 2010 at 12:03 pm #

    One difference between Jennifer Knapp and K.D. Lang or Melissa Ethridge is that the latter do not (to my knowledge) profess to be Christians. Many people (not all) observe a discrepancy between Knapp’s Christian profession and her homosexuality. This is why cnn.com has her story on today’s front page. I doubt that cnn would care about her story if one thing were absent: her profession of faith. If Jennifer Knapp was not a professing Christian, her story would go largely unnoticed.

  44. Kelly April 16, 2010 at 1:13 pm #

    Andy, a correct to your otherwise well stated opinions. She stands out as someone who was a part of the ‘Evangelical’ conservative part of the church who has ‘no thanks’ to it.

    Hopefully she will find her way to a welcoming denomination/congregation and find her spiritual life, and her relationship to God and others who worship God also, once again.

    It is not her professing to be a Christian that makes the story notable so much as her professing to be a conservative one, and gay.

    I hope that sooner rather than later, this will not be newsworthy either.

  45. marcia April 16, 2010 at 2:59 pm #

    I found this quote from the CNN article very interesting:

    “I would rather be judged before God as being an honest human being,” she said. “If I am in any way unpleasing in his sight, I can only hope and pray that he gives me the opportunity to find who I am supposed to be.”

  46. Donald Bean April 17, 2010 at 1:48 pm #

    This story is so sad! While reading, I was reminded how easily we can forget the human element involved; namely Jennifer. In her interview with CT she makes the statement, “I do have a soul! (laughs) I care deeply. It’s a very heart-wrenching decision to come into a room knowing that there are many people who just won’t come with me.” When topics such as homosexuality are addressed, it seems that we are quick to jump to Biblical conclusions often times without considering the person involved. And while I agree – along with most everyone commenting – that homosexuality is an egregious sin. I think it is also important to remember the depths of our own sin along with the price of our own salvation! Our justification is dependent completely on Christ. Therefore, we must be careful and perhaps intentional to eliminate self-righteous pride when dealing with homosexuality in the church.

    Paul’s words to the Corinthians are helpful, “I wrote to you in my letter not to associate with sexually immoral people—not at all meaning the sexually immoral of this world, or the greedy and swindlers, or idolaters, since then you would need to go out of the world. But now I am writing to you not to associate with anyone who bears the name of brother if he is guilty of sexual immorality or greed, or is an idolater, reviler, drunkard, or swindler—not even to eat with such a one.” Notice, Paul’s exhortation is not limited to the sexually immoral!

    “Mike N.” (post #1) nailed it on the head… thank you for the mature insight!

  47. Committed Christian April 17, 2010 at 5:43 pm #

    Since she is in unrepentant sin, I believe that the Christians in her life have the responsibility to call her to repentance. If she does not listen to them, then they should take it to the church. If she does not listen even to then, she should be to us a “Gentile and a tax collector” (Matt 18:17). That does not mean treating her poorly or unlovingly, quite the contrary. It means we must lovingly call her to repentance and faith in Christ. However, Knapp is not in a church currently, but the same principle applies. We do not know if she is saved or not, but it is safer assume she is not and call her to Christ.

  48. Fabi April 18, 2010 at 9:06 am #

    Great post. I hope as many people as possible will come together and remember to pray for Jen regularly.

  49. angelica April 18, 2010 at 4:34 pm #

    Wow. This is why sooo many christians do not come out… To you “certain” things in the bible are sacred.. but it’s only what you choose to believe in and preach about.. it’s what is being fed in the church… You use the bible as a guide, shield and weapon.. But i dare you to really follow scripture and do EVERYTHING it says to do… you will not be able to do it.

    There is a higher power than the bible. The life that was given to us was not because of the bible. It was because of our Creater GOD. GOD did not write the bible.

    My God is an awesome GOD! For I am created of his image. I am 33 years old. Born and raised in an evangelical home where my parents are pastors for the past 20 years. and I am gay.

    You can not take away the love of GOD, or his salvation for my soul, with your words of theology, or scripture, when you merely pick and choose what you want to take from it. For HIS love is always with me.

    God Bless,

  50. Geoff April 18, 2010 at 9:11 pm #

    Agelica,

    I understand what you are saying, but in your own post you argue against yourself. If you are denying the legitimacy of the Bible, then you discredit your own argument by bringing up the fact that you are from an evangelical pastor lead home.

    God loves us all, can’t take that away, nor can we take away the desire for God to provide salvation for everyone, what is clear though is that God has declared that Sin can not exist in his presence. He has also taken the time to list many of these sins. Homosexuality, in both the old and new testament, is clearly a sin. As is lying, adultery, stealing, and murder and many more actions. We are all guilty of sinning, that’s also a given.

    Jesus fulfilled and completed the Old Testament covenant, and summed up God’s will by giving us two commandments to live our lives by:
    1) Love your God with all your heart, soul and body
    2) Love your neighbor as yourself.

    If you, or anyone, continues in sin, clearly you are not loving God with all your heart, soul, and body. Everyone stumbles, but a continuous, non-repentant act is not a stumble.

    Look at it this way, if you have a person who lies in business, lies to his family, friends and associates, lies to get ahead or just lies for the fun of it, BUT that same person is a good faithful husband and father, doesn’t sleep with other women and attends church faithfully, would you say this person is a Christian? Would you say we should support and encourage his sin by allowing him to continue to live in it? Would you think God would allow this person in His presence?

    Homosexuality is the same as the liar above. If it’s non-repentant, it’s not a struggling Christian, it’s a person who wants the benefits of Christianity without the guiding Love of Christ. Our duty as Christians is to love God first, and love that person as we love ourselves. Our self-love doesn’t allow us to continually sin, but leads us to repentance and seek forgiveness of Christ. That’s what we must do for Jennifer and you. Love God first, but love you in a way that doesn’t make you think that you can continue to live in your sin and expect to be in God’s presence.

  51. Derek April 18, 2010 at 11:54 pm #

    Angelica,
    You’re right that all of us fail to measure up to God’s standards or to do all He told us to do.

    But that is an entirely different thing than to celebrate the very things He says He hates. And no, I’m not saying that He hates you or Jennifer. But he hates sin in all of its forms because unrepented sin always ends up separating us from Him and from one another.

  52. Nathan April 19, 2010 at 1:26 pm #

    God hates all sin, but people pick and choose. I think that can make church very confusing for gay people. The “otherly” sins are dealt with harshly, but the sins people can see themselves actually committing are dealt with less harshly, if at all.

    Gluttony has been redefined.
    Pride is considered a good character trait.
    Vanity & greed run rampant.

  53. Donald Johnson April 19, 2010 at 1:39 pm #

    When I come to a list of sins in Scripture, I try to resist the temptation to focus on the ones that I am LEAST likely to do.

    We are all sinners saved by grace.

  54. Derek April 19, 2010 at 2:07 pm #

    You’re right, Donald Johnson- Paul was one arrogant man in I Corinthians 5 to expel the man who was sleeping with his step-mother – imagine the gall and hypocrisy to pick on that guy – I mean, Paul’s step-mother probably wasn’t even alive!

  55. Brian Krieger April 19, 2010 at 2:28 pm #

    To his credit, I think Don meant focusing, not correction as a whole. And, to that extent, I think that is Nathan’s point as well (though I am interested to hear what church says that being prideful, etc. is OK and it is loving to embrace being prideful).
    I think we should be cautious when discussing such a deep, impactful (sic) sin. But it’s still that. And calling sin good and calling darkness light is something that is (imho WELL) beyond disobedience. A difference between embracing and celebrating versus committing and turning back again.

  56. Wendi April 19, 2010 at 2:50 pm #

    My faith was at it’s lowest point in years. Following death and divorce I felt as though I had no place in the church. Jennifer’s honesty and bravery has really touched me. I found myself listening to her old albums and feeling as though imperfect as I am God still loves me. And her.

  57. Nathan April 19, 2010 at 3:35 pm #

    I am suggesting something more subtle than an outright acceptance of unmistakable cases of pride gluttony, greed & vanity, etc.

    I think choosing a humble leader is very difficult. Pride masquerades as self confidence. Churches want strong leaders and can make the mistake of endorsing pride.

    A good percentage of the 200 missionaries my church supports are obese. I realize that there are many possible reasons for that, but it would be a huge faux pas to suggest gluttony.

    I think other parts of the world have a strong case to claim that American churches endorse gluttony and greed. Also, I think that the early church would be shocked to see what we allow to take place — the things that they see scripture “clearly” forbidding.

    I can’t believe that adultery and homosexuality are the only sins that people fall into, but they are the ones that are million times more likely to be reported on in CT and this blog, right?

    Are there cases where leaders were defrocked or members lost their membership because of pride?

  58. Derek April 19, 2010 at 4:10 pm #

    Nathan,
    Were a famous preacher or Christian singer to say to the watching world and community of believers all over the world “I’m a glutton, but that’s ok – so deal with it. Accept me as I am, because God does”. Or how about this – “I’m a kleptomaniac. I have a condition that thankfully, modern science understands in ways that Scripture does not, so I guess you’ll just have to deal with my behavior.”. Those would be fairer comparisons than the examples you gave. It’s not the crime, so much as the denial that a category for specific crimes even exist.

  59. Bradley Cochran April 19, 2010 at 7:14 pm #

    “No doubt there is a “spirit” that “overrides” what the Bible teaches, but it is not the Spirit of Christ—even though she may think that it is.” – DB

    Sobering reflection. We should all pray for her.

  60. Derek April 22, 2010 at 6:57 pm #

    She’s going to be interviewed on Larry King’s show tomorrow. Sure to generate another round of discussion… and probably not a little gloating by the left/media/activists.

    I think Derek Webb’s support of Jennifer Knapp is perhaps the most interesting part of this story. I wonder if this will change the trajectory of his ministry and audience.

  61. Nikole April 27, 2010 at 5:45 am #

    Here I sit at work and I stumbled on this article. I have read through the comments that have been posted and SERIOUSLY!!!! Lighten up. I mean really. So I have read everything from Lesbians are not wanted in the church to more christian hypocrisy and judgment. I walked away from the church 8 years ago too. Ironically with the idiotic behavior displayed here I will not walk back anytime soon either. Funny how fast someone will refer to someone as anointed then throw them out with the first dark side that is revealed in their life. Well brothers and sister or the judgment may you keep you inner “darkness” hidden! God for bid someone look down their nose at you for lusting after the woman or man next to you at church, thinking evil thoughts about the guy who just cut you off, or even yet the damnation you have just given as though you were GOD himself stepping down from the holy throne to stone Jen for being who she feels created to be. May God’s wrath be as harsh as yours is to her! By the way I applaud you for being the “light” in the darkness and being just like Jesus…by the way according to the gospel he would be at her concert having a shot of Scotch with her applauding and saying well done with love not pointed fingers! YOU SHOULD ALL BE ASHAMED!

  62. Nathan May 2, 2010 at 11:35 pm #

    I believe that satan has set her up on purpose and put her in a position to mislead Christians and cause them to believe the lie that one can be a homosexual Christian. She is in such darkness. I saw her being interviewed on Larry King maybe a week ago, and was just disgusted. I didn’t even know who she was, but I can see how CNN would want to promote her like that. Thanks for posting this. She needs everyone’s prayer.

  63. Jim April 15, 2011 at 7:37 pm #

    Hello:

    Jennifer Knapp is/was/will be a sinner, as are we all. The point is not her sin, be it homosexuality, theft, etc. The point is what you DO with it. I have committed many sins, and I have repented and asked for God’s forgiveness. Ms. Knapp’s mistake is NOT sinning per se, but her seeing her sin as something else, i.e., not sinful. The born gay or became gay thing is a non-issue, as we are all born sinful, and do sinful things. But we prove our walk, and Jesus’ wonderful gift by RESISTING and CONDEMNING our sin, not by reclassifying it as not a sin. This is Ms. Knapp’s problem, not her sin. Homosexuality is NOT the THE sin, it is a sin. She’s hell-bound as sure a the straightest soul on the planet without Jesus. So, as far as sin is concerned, forget the homosexuality, and focus on the denial of sin. No one is beyond redemption but those who refuse to acknowledge sin. I LOVE Ms. Knapp’s music, and not chiefly because it is great music, though it is, but because the lyrics are Biblical and moving in a way the typical popular Christian music is not. “Lord, undo me….’ ! That’s GREAT, and I only wish Ms. Knapp would pray this for herself and her homosexuality. Making a person aware of her sin is NOT mean or cruel, quite the opposite. I wish more people realized this, and I also wish that people would remember that Christ came to save us from our sin, not to pretend they are sins. God bless.

    Jim

  64. Jim April 15, 2011 at 7:41 pm #

    By the way, Ms. Knapp is not in peril of her eternal soul because she is a homosexual, but rather because she refuses to see this as a sin. And to those who are self-righteous on this point, i.e., not homosexual, not murderers, etc. remember that sexual sins are not, spiritually, great sins that all the others. Don’t you dare look down on Ms. Knapp’s sin, while cozying up to your own because your sin is more “presentable.”

  65. Jim April 15, 2011 at 7:48 pm #

    One more comment from those who condemn Ms. Knapp, while almost certainly letting themselves off the hook for their sins, is that your role as a Christian is to pray for sinners to repent, and love them while they do, or even if they don’t. God judges, we just inform those who are ignorant or ignoring His word.

    Remember, next time you go to church, you are going through the same entrance Ms. Knapp is, the SINNER’S ENTRANCE, and perhaps you’ll be able to see homosexuality as the sin it is, without believing those who practice it are irredeemable.

    Also, those who are of Ms. Knapp’s opinion on homosexuality, are doing her no service by supporting her sinful decision, and if you TRULY love her as Christians ought to, you will lovingly (not accusingly, as we are all SINNERS) pray for her, and if you know her personally, speak and remonstrate with her.

    Lord, “undo” us all.

    Jim

  66. yankeegospelgirl April 16, 2011 at 3:12 pm #

    I felt like a bit of an outside observer when all this happened, because I had hardly heard any of Jennifer Knapp’s music. She wasn’t an artist I was familiar with. The first thought I had was, “Oh boy, it’s Ray Boltz all over again.”

    However, I had just been beginning to listen to a few songs from her debut _Kansas_, and really liking what I heard. I had put “Refine Me” on my ipod because I loved how it was written and how she sang it.

    I already knew there were rumors about her sexuality before she officially came out. I hoped it wasn’t true, but I was sadly wrong. At that point I stopped listening to her music, because I wasn’t strictly speaking a fan yet, and I figured it was better to leave things that way.

    I have not read her entire interview, but your quotes are quite telling. Personally, I am not sure how much pity she deserves. It’s certainly what she wants and what she’s looking for, but she is making an active choice to sin, and no amount of fuzzy rhetoric can cover that over. Moreover, she has pigeon-holed evangelical Christians en masse by describing herself as “worthless” in their eyes. It’s the old trick: “You’re telling me that what I do is sinful, therefore you must hate me, and you are a hateful person.” Grossly unfair, but very, very typical.

    We should pray that she will find the light of God’s glory and grace, but I fear in my heart that in the coming years, she will not be the only one who needs prayer as her sin becomes yet more widely accepted in the Church.

  67. Oh-Jay Lackmon-Bay April 18, 2011 at 11:29 am #

    YGG,

    In fact, the quickest way to be labled a homophobe is to make the statement “The Bible clearly reveals that homosexuality is a sin all the time without exception but just like any sin, God can and will forgive a person if they repent and trust Christ to save them.” However, all Christians realize that statement is true. If saying that means that, in the eyes of pretend christians, I “harbor contempt” then that’s a label I am MORE than happy to have pinned on me. 🙂

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