I was literally rendered momentarily speechless by the news that Ray Boltz is a homosexual. I first read about it on my friend Jeff’s blog (read here) and then in an article on ChristianityToday.com (read here). I didn’t see that one coming…at all!
According to the CT article, Boltz retired from Christian music several years ago, but from hearing churches all over the country belt out some of his music each week in choral anthems, no one would know. Famous for such songs as “I Pledge Allegiance to the Lamb”, “Thank You”, and “Behold the Lamb” (among many others), Boltz told his family in 2004 that he was gay, and divorced his wife early this year.
This is the creepy part–he is dating and enjoying the “normal gay life” now. Ick.
I want to be all cool about it and say, “Hey, whatever, that doesn’t undermine all the great songs he’s written that praise God.” I want to be cool like that, but honestly, I’m not. I really think, “Omigosh! Ray Boltz is gay!” And if I heard his song played, I would probably turn to whoever and whisper, “Do you know that Ray Boltz is gay?” It’s one of those things that boggles my mind and makes me ask questions.
The thing that really bothers me about the whole thing is that Ray Boltz isn’t fighting the temptations; he’s openly embracing the lifestyle. Imagine the devestation his now ex-wife must have felt, and what about his children? To grow up thinking your dad is straight and then–wham!–meet your dad’s new boyfriend! I can’t imagine the heartache.
More cosmopolitan and more accepting people than me would probably say, “Why shouldn’t Boltz live his life embracing his homosexuality? If his family really loved him, wouldn’t they be happy that he is now a ‘whole’ individual?” I imagine his family loves him no matter what, but doing something that is explicitly against the Bible does not make a person “whole;” it does the very opposite. Yes, I do believe that God loves homosexuals and that they can be Christians. However, I do not believe that living an openly gay lifestyle is biblically acceptable–yes, if you are gay, you should repress your sexuality and give your urges over to God. It’s not easy, fun, or simple.
Obviously, there’s going to be a backlash in evangelical circles, not that Boltz really cares as he is now attending one of the many colorful Metropolitan Community Churches (openly accepts the practices of gays, lesbians, transgender, bisexual & so on) throughout the United States. In a few months, they may be one of the only denominations still singing “The Anchor Holds”.