Homosexuals and salvation

Can homosexuals go to heaven and are practicing Christians supposed to love them?

A distinction needs to be made in answering your question.  “Homosexuals” can refer to Christians who struggle with temptation to engage in same-sex sins.  These individuals recognize the sinfulness of thoughts and actions that run contrary to God’s word that spells out that sexual relations are for men and women in marriage (Hebrews 13:4).  They fight against those temptations.  They confess their sins when they fall into temptation.  They look to Jesus Christ for forgiveness of their sins and strength to fight temptation better in the future.

In contrast to these individuals are “homosexuals” who deny, ignore and rationalize their same-sex sins.  They see no need to confess sins in this regard.  It is people with this impenitent attitude that the apostle Paul had in mind when he wrote:  “Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God?  Do not be deceived:  Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God” (1 Corinthians 6:9-10).  You notice that it is not a particular sin that characterizes people as “wicked” and bars them from the kingdom of God.  It is impenitence.

Are Christians supposed to love homosexuals?  Yes.  Christians are to love people no matter what their characterizing sin might be.  Why?  Because it is pretty loveless to recognize the spiritual danger people are in by their sins and impenitence, and say nothing.  If we love people, we will have every reason to point them to God’s law so they can recognize and confess their sins, and point them to God’s gospel so they can enjoy forgiveness of sins through faith in Jesus who came into the world “to seek and to save what was lost” (Luke 19:10).