1 Peter 1:14 Identity: Non-conformist

As obedient children, do not be conformed to the passions of your former ignorance …


The Christian does not conform to the patterns of this world, but is transformed by the renewing of their minds.  In so doing they show what God’s will is.  This is not just the will of God for the individual, but it is the will of God for society.  The prevailing standard of truth dictated by the state in western governments is that same-sex marriage is an acceptable variation on marriage.  The Bible does not know this to be the case.  In fact, in Romans 1, the acceptance of same-sex attraction seems to indicate that society has declined in the life of the mind and the body.  In our society we have discarded the evidence of our eyes for an evidence of the mind.  If my mind is in turmoil because of same-sex attraction but my body has a specific gender, I must go with the ‘truth’ of the mind and not the body.  This decision shows a gnostic trend.  Also, although God has revealed in his word what the standards are for sexual intimacy, we have abandoned those because we know better than our creator.  The creator says that it is possible to feel desires that tend toward sin, but our society uses arguments like, “How can something that feels so right be so wrong?” 

High school Christians who hold to the biblical standard on sexual purity are derided by those who know little about scripture and how it is interpreted.  They say that people in the Bible were polygamists, rapists, and attracted to their own sex (look at Sodom).  However, they fail to see which passages are descriptive and which are proscriptive.  They say the Bible doesn’t say much about same-sex intercourse.  The Bible says less about bestiality.  This is because there are actions, which in Jewish culture, it would seem like you didn’t really need to spell out.  If a Christian points out that the body is designed for two people of opposite genders to have sex within marriage, they will be looked down upon.  If they do not hire people, or act in line with their conscience, they will be guilty of hate crimes.  This is one area where Christians are to be non-conformist in Western culture.

High-schoolers often think that they are championing a cause equivalent to the human rights issues of the 60’s.  However, the two issues are not equivalent.  There is not a 100% determinism in same-sex attraction as there is with race.  Also, sexual practice is a matter of choice or mutual consent, such is not the case with race.

For biblical perspectives on same-sex attraction, please read some of the articles on Robert Gagnon’s site:  http://www.robgagnon.net/ArticlesOnline.htm


Father, I see storm clouds rising.  We took a path of appeasement in the mainstream church.  We thought we could live and let live.  There were always those who hated gays, but we wanted to show that we loved people with same-sex attraction.  Now we see quite rapidly that the media and society are defining us as hateful for our views.  We see that the state is drafting laws that take our businesses and force sexual views in school.  We fear that religious institutions will have to hire people with sexual practices that are biblically immoral.  Protect us from changes or prepare our minds.  Save our youth from the shallow indoctrination that is occurring all around us.  Help us to be strong if we are arrested for taking a stand in this area.


  1. What do people who lose sight of God focus upon?
  2. How would an ancient Christian have been non-conformist in following their passions?
  3. What does obedience have to do with being non-conformist?  Don’t they contradict?
  4. How might the church be counter-cultural today?
  5. How can we prepare our children to take a stand on issues like same-sex attraction?

About Plymothian

I teach at Moody Bible Institute in Chicago. My interests include education, biblical studies, and spiritual formation. I have been married to Kelli since 1998 and we have two children, Daryl and Amelia. For recreation I like to run, play soccer, play board games, read and travel.
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2 Responses to 1 Peter 1:14 Identity: Non-conformist

  1. 33324bg says:

    “Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things (sins listed earlier in passage) the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience. Therefore do not be partakers with them; for you were formerly darkness, but now you are Light in the Lord; walk as children of Light (for the fruit of the Light consists in all goodness and righteousness and truth), trying to learn what is pleasing to the Lord.” (Eph. 5:6-10).

    My former lusts used to represent me, they did- the old me. But now I’m no longer darkness, but Light in the Lord; there has been a dramatic change spiritually and the full affects are still coming to fruition. When I was blind I didn’t know any better, I had no power to set myself free from my lusts. But now I have been set free and I do not have to sin. Plus, my heart has been changed and I don’t want to sin. Like Paul in Romans 7:20 I can say, “…if I am doing the very thing I do not want, I am no longer the one doing it, but sin which dwells in me.”

    Before Christ my lusts were mine “in my ignorance,” but now, as Light in the Lord, when I sin, I do so to greater detriment. I know better. I know I’m called to holiness and because I have a great high priest I can draw near to God’s throne “to receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” (Heb. 4). It is comforting to know that God doesn’t just forgive me and smile at me, instead of scowl, but He also provides the power to overcome sin! Yes! (Though this does not mean this is often not without a struggle).

  2. Christina Zezulak says:

    I really appreciate how it says, ” If my mind is in turmoil because of same-sex attraction but my body has a specific gender, I must go with the ‘truth’ of the mind and not the body.  This decision shows a gnostic trend.  Also, although God has revealed in his word what the standards are for sexual intimacy, we have abandoned those because we know better than our creator.”
    As I continue to grow more deeply in Christ, I realize the truth of our formal ignorance. This statement clearly shows that humans beings are so prideful, we honestly believe that truth is what we believe, and that truth revolves around how we see the world, and that we know better then the Creator of the universe. If one believes that he or she was “born this way,” then it is true, and somehow the Creator of the universe made them this way, so his Word to us does not apply. It is so sad to see unbelievers so deceived by the lies of Satan. We need to equip the church with proclaiming the gospel in the midst of such wickedness. Only the gospel and transform the lives of homosexuals and homosexual supporters, no behavior modification of any means will do. Believers need to be equipped to proclaim the truth in love. As a good quote once said, “Truth makes us holy, and gives us something to share; love makes us attractive, and gives us the means to share it.”

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