In case you missed it, a large group of prominent Christians came out with an affirmation of the Bible’s teaching on human sexuality yesterday. And in case you missed it, a large group of leftists lost all control of their bodily functions in response.
Truthfully the real story about the fallout from the release of the Nashville Statement from the Coalition for Biblical Sexuality is how many people are appalled to learn that Christians believe in the Bible. Author and commentator Ben Shapiro (who is Jewish) reacted appropriately:
“Did I miss the part of the #NashvilleStatement where any serious Christian doctrine changed in the slightest?”
No. No he did not. As one of the originators of the statement, Denny Burk, explained,
“It was our aim to say nothing new, but to bear witness to something very ancient.”
And while no Christian should be surprised that worldly non-Christians react with hostility to the proclamation of Biblical truth, it was truly remarkable to witness professing believers so committed to the spirit of the age that they lashed out at God’s Word. Here were three of the worst:
Columnist and blogger Rachel Held Evans raged:
“It literally says they deny that accepting LGBT people is something about which Christians can disagree. Disagree with them & you’re ‘out.’”
I understand that Evans is fond of distancing herself from orthodox Christianity – it opens far more worldly doors for her that way. But it still seems remarkable that she is yet to grasp that accepting the Bible’s teaching on sexuality isn’t about agreeing or disagreeing with man. It’s about submitting to God.
The entire point of a Christian conversion is giving up control over one’s mind, soul, and spirit to the Lordship of Christ. What He says, goes. We aren’t given the privilege of indulging emotional temptations and the “fine sounding arguments of men” – not if we are to love like Christ. Our minds are transformed, our desires become His desires – to seek and save lost souls.
Evans’ words reveal a far more fundamental misunderstanding of Christianity than just her confusion on sexual ethics. She is the one bizarrely assuming that her rejection of the Bible’s counsel is optional and permissible. It is not, and her frustration with that shouldn’t be laid at the feet of those who submit to God, but rather with God Himself.
Then there was author Jen Hatmaker who protested,
“The fruit of the ‘Nashville Statement’ is suffering, rejection, shame, and despair.”
To understand how backwards this is, first recognize that the Nashville Statement explicitly affirmed that having same-sex attraction is not sinful. What is sinful is to engage in romantic and sexual relationships with the same sex. So in evaluating the logic of Hatmaker’s critique, simply substitute a different sexual relationship that the Bible condemns as sinful in place of gay sex.
When Christianity condemns fornication, for example, it is likely to make the fornicator uncomfortable and upset. Would it be fair to say that the “fruit” of that proper elucidation of Scripture is the “suffering, rejection, shame, and despair” of the fornicator? Of course not. Any Christian knows that the source of suffering, rejection, shame, and despair is sin – any and all sin. And therefore any Christian would affirm God’s truth is a better path…for all of us. For some reason, Hatmaker disagrees.
For his part, left-wing activist and professing Christian Brian McClaren retweeted a woman named Cathleen Falsani to express his views on the issue. Falsani, a religion journalist who dubs herself “God Girl,” angrily fumed:
“Really, evangelicals? With all the pain, chaos & cataclysm right now, you thought *now* was the time for this crap?”
Keeping in mind the somewhat concerning reality that Falsani (and by extension McClaren) had just deemed the restatement of 2,000 years of Christian orthodoxy “crap,” it made me curious to know if she was holding these Christian leaders to a standard she would not live by herself. If it was inappropriate for them to address anything other than Houston’s unfolding tragedy, the same would go for her, it would seem.
But it turns out that while rescue operations were underway in Texas, Cathleen found it appropriate to tweet concern over Episcopal churches cooking thousands of lobsters and PETA’s desire that they consider vegan bake sales instead. I guess that’s what she and Brian would consider keeping your eye on the ball, as opposed to those dang Christians who wasted time affirming the Bible.
While there were far too many others, these three prominent professing Christians did a great disservice to the Kingdom with their rejection of Biblical truth. Playing footsie with sin helps no one but yourself in your vain and ultimately futile pursuit of man’s applause.
But don’t be surprised by it. The Apostle Paul warned in his second letter to Timothy that this time would come – where those who should know better say what “itching ears want to hear” rather than speak the Words of life.
Let those motivated by the love of Christ rather than the love of self choose wiser.