Popular pastor and speaker John MacArthur has come under fire from supporters of the LGBT community after he claimed that "no one is gay" and referred to homosexuality as a "vicious sin".
"No one is gay," the pastor of Grace Community Church in Sun Valley, California recently said. "People commit adultery, they commit sins of homosexuality, they lie, they steal, they cheat...That's like saying, 'You know, I keep robbing banks, but I'm a robber. I'm a bank robber. What am I gonna do? I'm a bank robber.'"
He added, "That is not an excuse for what you do. Are there certain kind of impulses that lead people in that direction? Yes. But I think one of the really deadly aspects of this is to let people define themselves as gay.
MacArthur contended that people are "not gay any more than an adulterer is hardwired to be forced by his own nature to commit adultery."
"Those are all behavioral sins that are condemned in scripture," he said. "God didn't hardwire anybody in such a way that they are not responsible for certain behaviors."
MacArthur's perspective didn't sit well with supporters of the LGBT community, as hundreds swiftly took to Facebook to express their outrage.
Wrote one commenter: "The American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Counseling Association, the American Psychiatric Association, the American Psychological Association, the American School Counselor Association, the National Association of School Psychologists and the National Association of Social Workers together, representing more than 480,000 mental health professionals, have all taken the position that homosexuality is not a mental disorder and thus is not something that needs to or can be 'cured.' So do we believe scientists or some biblical bull**** out of the bronze age?"
"MacArthur's response is evidence that he doesn't know any gay people, he doesn't talk to any gay people, and he has no desire to learn about gay people. He's read one book in his life and that's good enough for him," Mehta wrote.
"What MacArthur doesn't understand is that people are born gay. But they choose to be bigots. And the path MacArthur has taken in his life is far more harmful to society than gay people who want nothing more than the same rights as everyone else."
However, MacArthur - who previously came under fire after stating the two "greatest attacks of terror" on American soil were the Supreme Court rulings on abortion and same-sex marriage - is not the only prominent pastor to hold such a perspective.
Last year, Bill Johnson, Senior Pastor of Bethel Church, said homosexuality is a blatant "violation of design" that ultimately disturbs the purpose that God created for His people.
"When we lose the knowledge of the existence of a creator, we lose the concept of design," he said. "When we lose the concept of design, we undermine the discovery of purpose. When we undermine the discovery of purpose, we remove the conviction of accountability. When we remove the conviction of accountability, we undermine the fear of God. The Bible says, 'The fear of God is the beginning of wisdom.'"
The "Dreaming With God" author went on to explain that one of the byproducts of losing the concept of the Creator has been to remove all boundaries on how conduct our lives, thus allowing sin to creep in.
"Everything about sin disturbs and disrupts the purpose that God created for us," Johnson explained. "He's a loving God who delights in people, and made us without sin so we could enjoy life in its fullest sense."
Homosexuality is one clear violation of God's design for the world He created, the pastor said.
"God didn't make those human bodies to fit together in that way," he said. "You look all through the issue - sex outside of marriage - all of these things are violation of design. God designed things to release blessing, pleasure, favor, delight, joy, peace - all those wonderful things - into the life of an individual. Those things come to us by responding to design."
He continued: "God made us a certain way; doing stuff His way was never meant to be punishment or a restriction - it was supposed to be, 'here's a focus on how you were designed.' Following His design always brings about the greatest amount of honor for God, and pleasure and delight for you and me. Let's do it His way."