A Christian Voice In A Changing Culture

Repentance for the Arrogance that is Idolatry

The Apostle Paul claims that all of humanity knows something of the truth of God through His design in creation. Our hearts bear witness of His grandeur through the works of His hand. That applies to the duality of male and female in humanity and throughout all of creation.

Humanity that rejects the witness of God in creation comes under judgment. That is because God holds us accountable to the witness of who He is through His design. Paul writes in Romans that “men suppress the truth by their wickedness, since what is known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them.” Men and women are without excuse when they reject God and His image in humanity, because God’s qualities are evident in what He made, including His heterosexual design for creation. (Rom. 1:18-20)

In denying God and His creation, rebellious humanity cannot worship the true God. So we make idols to worship. That idolatry ultimately results in sexual immorality, including the futile and compulsive quest to become one with a member of one’s own gender. “They exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshipped and served the creature rather than the Creator.” (Rom. 1:25)

Last June, I witnessed the celebration of this idolatry when CA began to issue gay marriage licenses. All the major papers and TV news shows featured glowing accounts of same-gender unions. Every editorial gushed at CA’s noble and courageous effort to serve justice to gays.

I thought: “No-one covering this tragedy has any fear of the Lord and His creation.” I thought of those verses in 1Samuel 15:23 where the prophet likens “rebellion to the sin of witchcraft, and arrogance to the evil of idolatry.” Those who promote gay marriage place their own foolish ideas of justice over reverencing God and His creation. They are without excuse; God has made Himself plain to them through creation and they have rejected that witness. Such arrogance is the evil of idolatry.

Idolatry perverts justice. I recently spoke with a man who lost his wife to a lesbian who was training for the pastorate in the Presbyterian Church USA. The two women began to have an affair. The diocese in charge of the lesbian supported her new relationship, even though it meant breaking up a marriage with kids! While advocating for the ‘poor’ lesbians, the church abused the betrayed husband, and presided over the destruction of a marriage.

Thinking themselves just, the world and the worldly church become foolish and abusive. Isaiah writes: “So justice is driven back, and righteousness stands at a distance; truth has stumbled in the street, honesty cannot enter. Truth is nowhere to be found, and whoever shuns evil becomes a prey. The Lord looked and was displeased that there was no justice.”(Is. 59: 14, 15)

Such idolatry and perversion of justice offends God. “Who is it you have insulted and blasphemed? Against whom have you raised your voice and lifted your eyes in pride? Against the Holy One of Israel!” (Is. 37:23)

“Woe to those who go to great depths to hide their plans from the Lord, who do their work in darkness and think, ‘Who sees us? Who will know?’ You turn things upside down, as if the potter were thought to be like the clay! Shall what is formed say to Him who formed it, ‘He did not make me’? Can the pot say of the potter, ‘He knows nothing’?” (Is. 29:15, 16)

God knows all. He knows what He place in our hearts that attest to His grandeur in creation. And He knows our tendency to turn away from Him and thus subject ourselves and others to all manner of perversion. In that delusional state, we become dull, arrogant, and proponents of false justice. We grieve God’s heart.

“Father, we confess our idolatry. We have worshipped our own perspectives on sex and justice. In our deception and pride, we have blasphemed Your very essence. We confess , O God, how gay marriage blackens Your eye, spits on Your creation, and reveal our rebellion. We really think we know better than You. We confess we have little if any fear of who You are, and how You have revealed Yourself to us in creation. Forgive us, O God. Please give us a holy fear of You before it is too late. May we fall on You the Rock and be broken of our arrogance before the Rock falls on us. (Lk 20:18)

“For our offenses are many in Your sight, and our sins testify against us. Our offenses are ever with us, and we acknowledge our iniquities; rebellion and treachery against the Lord, turning our backs on our God, fomenting oppression and revolt, uttering lies our hearts have conceived.” (Is. 59:12, 13)

Honor marriage for the good of all. Vote YES on Proposition 8.

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Fighting in Peace

As we are now only two weeks before the election, I want to shift into a more prayerful, less teaching-like mode. I want to turn unto the Lord in a spirit of repentance. Some of the sins we will be naming and turning from may or may not be ours. At least we are capable of them. Like Daniel, we can as priests represent these sins before God and repent of them on behalf of our fellow humanity.

I want to address and repent this day on behalf of the foolish striving we as Christians conceive when we undertake a battle such as this. We can begin in the Spirit and end up in the flesh! (“Trying to attain the goal by human effort”, Gal. 3:3) We do this when we take our eyes off the Lord, the Creator of marriage, and the One who will be true to His image in humanity.

Having assumed God’s burden in our own strength, we become nasty toward people, like the gay community and its allies. As if our disgust at misdirected movements will fulfill God’s purposes! We must stay mindful at all times that the enemy is the enemy. Satan’s deceptive, destructive power to blind fellow image-bearers should alone be the object of our wrath.

Our anger at people does not ‘bring about the righteous life that God desires’ (James 1:20). We look to God and ask that He would vanquish His enemy. He loves His human image far more than we; we look to Him to open blind eyes and to release His people to stand in this hour on behalf of love: His love for both marriage and those who rail against it.

The Psalmist declares: “Give us aid against the enemy, for the help of man is worthless.

With God, we will gain the victory, and He will trample down our enemies.”(Ps 108:12,3)

In these days, I am caught between high hopes for marriage and the future of CA, and a fear of the relentless advance of an immoralist agenda there if God’s people don’t act. That fear, perhaps a fusion of holy dread and neurotic anxiety, causes me to cast myself on Him. And He meets me beautifully through His Word.

He has given me an awesome peace in this battle—the overarching assurance that He is in control and that His will for marriage will prevail. He spoke to me through Psalm 37:“Delight yourself in the Lord, and He will give you the desire of your hearts. Commit your way to the Lord, and He will do this: He will make your righteousness shine like the dawn, the justice of your cause like the noonday sun. Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for Him.” (vs. 4-7)

So I wait, deepening trust in Him amid the battle that will culminate at the polls. My hope is in Him, the author and finisher of marriage. I can rest in the One who has already won the war on behalf of His image in humanity. He invites me into the peaceful assurance of that victory.

A few weeks ago, my friend Dean gave me these verses. They are a seal over my soul that guards me from unholy fear. God spoke through his prophet to a small army defending Jerusalem that awaited the advance of opposing forces, much greater in size. He said: “Do not be afraid or discouraged because of this vast army. For the battle is not yours, but God’s…Take up your positions; stand firm and see the deliverance that the Lord will give you.” (2Chron. 20: 15, 17)

Honor marriage peacefully for the good of all. Vote YES on Proposition 8.

“O God forgive us for the ways we fight battles in our own broken humanity. Forgive us for representing You poorly in our vain striving, a strife in which we target mere men as the enemy. And forgive us for ungodly fear. We look to You for strength and peace and clarity—You who alone authored Your image and You who will be faithful to defend and vindicate it. Help us merely to do our part; help us to be still and listen, that we might act according to Your will, O God. Having won the war, O God, we await Your victory in this particular battle for marriage in CA.”

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Marriage Disciplines the Greed of the Gay Community

Gay activists are relentless in their push for full embrace in the culture. And ‘gay marriage’ is the prize for attaining ‘normal.’

Throughout my adult life in ministry to the homosexual, I have witnessed the evolution of this relentless drive. What began in the seventies as mild anti-discrimination laws protecting gays has become in the 21st century a radical insistence: we want full rights and privileges on par with heterosexuals. In other words, we want marriage and family.

At denominational conventions, city hall and school board meetings, on college campuses, in churches, at our conferences, I have witnessed the drive of gay activists toward full inclusion. Somehow, someone‘s decision to pursue a particular course of sexual identification and pleasure becomes the obligation of society to bless it.

Today, we are doing just that. We confirm gays as if that tag were the highest and truest expression of his/her humanity. We codify their demands, put them on the books as constitutional rights. We coddle them, as if they were needy, noisy children whom we appease just so they would not make another scene.

I see this time and time again in families. One member leaves home then returns with a special friend, maybe a child via adoption, etc. The shocked family flinches at first then over time stops flinching. To avoid another round of conflict, the family changes. The essentially selfish and immoral member wins by virtue of self-insinuation.

That is exactly how I feel about the gay marriage issue. I did not choose this battle. Marriage had been squarely defined as heterosexual in CA. Gay activists pushed until their appointment with the Supreme Court. Like foolish, codependent parents, the Court appeased the greedy children that they are.

So now we fight. And we should. To give gays marriage is to give the addict another fix. It will not satisfy their demand for ‘normal.’ It cannot. External measures cannot resolve their internal conflict between design and desire, as we have seen.

Budziszewski writes: “To remove the sting of guilt, we entomb it until it seems beautiful to us. Every movement to excuse a moral wrong becomes a movement to condone it, and every movement to condone a moral wrong becomes a movement to extend it.”

Stop the greed of gay activists. Do not reinforce their corporate immaturity. Do not cede marriage to them! Restrain ‘the greed, which is idolatry.’ (Eph.5:5) To allow ‘gay marriage’ to remain the law of the land is to allow a virulent strain of immoral greed to flourish in the land. Honor Marriage for the good of all. Vote YES on Proposition 8.

“Father, we ask for the grace to fight the greed of gay activists. Give us the clear seeing that to merely concede to their demands is foolish and unloving. For all.”

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Marriage Exposes the Lie of ‘Gay Marriage’

The design of creation speaks for itself: God created humanity in the duality of male and female. Marriage proclaims the essence of that bonding for the express purpose of creating and raising children.

Many desire other forms of sexual relating outside of marriage, including homosexual unions. No-one contests that, and all should treat those who struggle outside the lines with dignity, tolerance, and mercy based on God’s evident mercy to us in Jesus Christ.

But why the relentless drive of gay activists and their sympathizers to secure marriage for themselves? The answer lies in self-justification. I agree with J. Budziszewski when he writes of a rather complex dance humans initiate to resolve inner conflict. That conflict for the gay community exists between the design of creation that marriage evidently bears, and their desire for same-sex union.

One feels sexual toward his own gender, acts on it. The good sexual feeling is matched by bad feelings—a hurting conscience–because at some level one knows it is wrong. The desired act simply does not line up with ‘design’: the bigger picture of what our sexual humanity is for.

One may at that point seek another way: confession and repentance, healing through insight, prayer, support groups, etc. Or one may embark on a relentless drive to prove to oneself and all others that one’s homosexuality is actually natural and good. ‘Gay marriage ‘is the activists’ expressed goal because it is the ultimate ‘normalizer’. It says: “You see, homosexual unions bear all the healthy earmarks of whole heterosexuality.”

It does not work. The conflict is not resolved. Normalizing disorder does not make it any less disorder. Budziszewski writes: “Unable to make the truth go away, we use every means we can devise to pretend that we are really being good.”

So instead of confessing sin, the gay community confesses the ‘natural’ glories of gay bonding and culture; fighting hard to not need a savior, the community fights hard to save itself by seeking to change society. No authentic resolution or reconciliation occurs because the core disorder is not acknowledged. Instead, broken ones ban together and vent their conflict upon society, insisting that we be reconciled to their way. Or no way!

‘Gay marriage’ is the ultimate victory for this delusion. If we buy it—the gay community’s false and ineffective means of resolving their own conflict, we are hurting them. And we are celebrating the delusion that homosexuality is an essential good on par with God’s design for His human creation.

Honor marriage for the good of all. Vote YES on Proposition 8.

“O God, open our eyes to the delusion at hand. Help us to help the broken resolve the conflict at hand. Only You Jesus can resolve that conflict. Lord have mercy.”

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Marriage is God’s Justice for Gays and Lesbians

Not all men and women submit their same-sex desires to God and His purposes. Increasingly, we live in a day when ‘the only problem with homosexuality is the one you have with it,’ to paraphrase the curt response of a young Christian to his pastor.

In some circles—legal, academic, artistic, journalistic—you could say that homosexuality is even accorded a special status. Maybe it’s a response to past abuses to gays, or the threat of being perceived as intolerant. The ‘enlightened’ bend overbackwards to celebrate all things homosexual, including gay marriage. The reasoning is simple: How could you withhold marriage from such winsome guys and girls?

But clever and disarming personalities should not alter the truth of God’s design for His human creation.Marriage proclaims that design over and over again on the face of the earth. It bears witness of a greater reality: the holy ‘otherness’ of gender differences, creativity within boundaries, the only just context for the raising of kids.

State-honored marriage upholds that witness for gays and lesbians. Its truth honors the design of the universe. Honoring marriage restrains assaults on that design. The Psalmist declares: “The wicked freely strut about when what is vile is honored among men.” (PS 12:8) Conversely, when we honor what is honorable, wickedness is curbed.

I recently engaged with a young man bound to homosexual addictions who was intent on pursuing a sexual relationship with me, or anyone who would attend to him. I simply and clearly defined how God in His mercy had freed me to live within His design for marriage. He was blown away; I created a boundary which freed me to be kind to him.

Marriage is justice for gays. It is a living witness of a truth that may be distorted or struck down in their hearts but not destroyed. Its wholeness restrains their brokenness. How? By offering them what they really need: the living witness of one man for one woman, pledged to permanence and fidelity, who include others in that life-giving offering.

Marriage is God’s justice for gays. It should also curb those who with misdirected compassion cede marriage to gays. A brilliant thinker on natural law, J. Budziszewski writes: “True compassion relieves his [the gay man’s] suffering, gives him what he needs. False compassion relieves what I suffer for him, gives him what he wants.”

Marriage is God’s justice to gays. Whether or not one is ready to admit it, marriage mirrors God’s design to those who fracture it. It bears witness of the better way. It gives one what (s)he needs, if not always what (s)he wants.

Honor marriage for the good of all. Vote YES on Proposition 8.

“Father, show us how whole marriage is one witness of truth and grace for gays. Temper our notions with justice with Yours. May we manifest that justice liberally.”

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