Philosophy of the Backbone

I have heard for years that in order to grow our churches we should soften our stand on the issues that society finds divisive. Emphasize unity over truth. Strive to be less offensive on non-essentials in order to earn a right to be heard on spiritual issues. We are paying the price for intentionally softening our resolve.

I have tried to study the issues regarding homosexuality and court cases involving churches. Every church I know has a strong desire to protect themselves from being pulled into court over this issue. There are numerous sources who will issue advice on how to design their documents, policies and procedures to make this less likely. I suspect that it is not possible to avoid the issues completely.

The Bible defines homosexual behavior as wrong. This fact will not go away. Attempts to redefine the Bible only work if you have not given it a serious read. So those of us who read and respect the teachings of Scripture will continue to see homosexuality as a sin.

The courts have been busy deciding that disagreeing with homosexuality is prejudice. This conclusion is based on the idea that homosexuality is less a choice than a result of how a person was born. The phrase is often used that ‘God made them that way.’

So believing this perspective regarding the practice of homosexuality allows the courts to rule that traditional Christianity is discrimination. Since it has become trendy to include sexual orientation in discrimination laws, the idea has legal teeth. There has been an attempt in many places to make laws which clarify that religious freedom is a higher priority than these discrimination cases but the courts have repeatedly stuck these down and probably will continue to do so.

While I will take actions hoping to protect my church from these lawsuits, I don’t believe any defense will ultimately shield us. The battle is going to find us. Perhaps the end result will be that Bible believing churches will no longer be allowed to legally operate or to own property. The result may be that we manage to put the first amendment back into the first position again. I don’t really know what will happen, but I know it will come with conflict.

The reality is that churches in America have gotten soft. Because of generations of living under the protection of the first amendment we have not had to defend Biblical truth. Since we have not had to defend our beliefs, American Christians are not practiced in standing up for what we belief, nor are we accustomed to paying a cost for our choice to love and serve God.

Scripture makes it clear that our association with Christ will bring conflict with the world. We must not allow this to be a surprise; nor should it be a point of dismay. It is a point of opportunity to demonstrate the backbone of Christianity. The church itself will be stronger, more Biblical, and make a more significant impact on the world around us, when our resolve becomes visible.

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2 thoughts on “Philosophy of the Backbone

  1. It is not a question of adjusting to winds of change, but picking your battles. Strongly Biblical Evangelicals know that homosexuality is part of the diversity of God’s creation, which God called Good. There are disagreements on this between people who respect the Bible quite as much as you do. So, stop pretending that this is the most important doctrine in Christianity, or that no-one who disagrees with you respects the Bible.

    • Strongly Biblical Evangelicals would know the content of Romans 1:26-32, and would not deny what it clearly says. Your suggestion that homosexuality is a part of God’s good creation is totally unsupported in Scripture. And yes there may be some disagreement between people who call themselves Christian, but people can call themselves anything. By their fruit you shall know them, and those who have a habit of adding to Scripture, such as saying God proclaimed homosexuality good in the creation account, will have to answer to God according to Revelation 22:18-19.

      I am not really sure what you mean by the first sentence. It sounds like you are saying we should not stand for truth in every battle, but instead should pick which ones we fight. The suggestion is equivalent to advocating living compromised lives. Also, if you read my post you will see that I am suggesting this battle is coming to us, not us coming to it.

      As to the most important doctrine in Christianity, that would probably be the resurrection. Or incarnation. But moral issues cannot be removed as insignificant, and knowing this, many churches will refuse to participate in homosexual marriage at any level, no matter what the consequences.

      Much of my intention was to help people understand that here in America, Christians are no longer covered by the first amendment. Since you are a Brit, I assume you do not understand the context, or how aggravating it is to have outsiders trying to school us on the application of our bill of rights.

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