I want you to understand that there ARE careful, sophisticated arguments both from scripture and from the Lutheran tradition for a clear, biblical, loving stance on these matters. But not everyone needs to know about the left hand work of God, the third use of the law or the interactions between Luther and Karlstadt. So what does it come down to?
Simply put, let Jesus (as he is in Scripture, not in your imagination) be all in all.
And following his footsteps, do these things:
- Love your neighbor in the same ways Jesus loved, no matter who or what they are.
- Never mix love of the sinner with affirmation of the sin, for yourself or for others. Keep both elements in tension.
- Do not set aside the scriptures for anything. Jesus didn't.
- Act with humility and patience, knowing that God is working both in you and in the world around you.
- If you have to make a choice between following Jesus and pleasing people, follow Jesus. Every time.