Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Is Fighting the Culture War Worth it?


Genesis 2:24
I don’t think that anyone would disagree that the number one cultural focus that the MSM (Main Stream Media), Universities, Government and Businesses are all picking up on these days is the division that surrounds Homosexuality. More and more we see the culture shifting at break-neck pace to embrace and wrap itself around this lifestyle –one that revolves around the choice of sex partners. Why do these entities embrace it now?

I would like to try as best as possible to approach the issue from a truly “Love for God and Neighbor” viewpoint. Whether I am successful does not matter; for I am constrained, not by my own wish to speak out but by the continuing call of God to live as he directs through the conviction of the Holy Spirit. Below is a list of topics I will briefly touch upon.

  1. To the God fearing Christian
  2. Why is it such a divisive issue?
  3. What is driving it?
  4. Who is getting on board?
  5. Will Psychology books be rewritten?
  6. WWJD – What would Jesus do?
  7. WSCD- What should Christians do?
To the God fearing Christian
I specifically wanted to speak to you first of all because sometimes we need to be encouraged (1 Thess. 5:14, Heb. 12:3) and reminded that we serve a God who is Omniscient (Rom. 2:16; 1 Cor. 4:5; Luke 12:2), Omnipotent (Ps. 62:11) and Sovereign (1 Chron. 29:11). There is nothing that can happen on this earth that He is not aware of—all things must first pass through His fingers. We on earth do not operate apart or outside of His sovereign control. Prov. 21:1-2 states, “The king's heart is in the hand of the LORD, Like the rivers of water; He turns it wherever He wishes. Every way of a man is right in his own eyes, But the LORD weighs the hearts.“  In the passage you can see the juxtaposition between the Lord’s sovereign work and the arrogance of humanity. We often think we are right but it is God who is the judge and the one who judges hearts. When Jesus stood before Pilate prior to His crucifixion He was told by him, ““…Do You not know that I have power to crucify You, and power to release You?" Jesus answered, "You could have no power at all against Me unless it had been given you from above. …”” John 19:10b-11a The point being, if you are living as God has ordained in obedience to His call and faithful to His Word and work then there is no reason to fear, be discouraged or faint-hearted because of cultural challenges. God is still on His throne and He is still in control no matter what man may choose to do or say to the contrary.

You may say, “I understand those things about God. But my unrest lies in the redefining of sin and what my children face as they grow up.” Those are legitimate concerns and I believe they fall exactly in line with the feelings of Lot from ancient Sodom of the Old Testament. See the passage below”

“…and turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah into ashes, condemned them to destruction, making them an example to those who afterward would live ungodly; and delivered righteous Lot, who was oppressed by the filthy conduct of the wicked (for that righteous man, dwelling among them, tormented his righteous soul from day to day by seeing and hearing their lawless deeds)-- then the Lord knows how to deliver the godly out of temptations and to reserve the unjust under punishment for the day of judgment, …” 2 Peter 2:6-9 (NKJV)

God took care of things then and He will indeed take care of things now in His good timing. The temptation children may face is the temptation to be confused. The temptation we as Christians will face is the temptation to accept the unnatural behavior even if it is condemned by God’s Word. Remember the immortal words of the Apostle Paul in 1 Cor. 10:13: “No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it.” It was passages such as this that the early Church had to take to heart as they faced their own government issued support of iniquity. But as you know, back then the world fought God ferociously yet Christianity flourished despite of it.

So during these darkened cultural days I urge you to seek God’s face and to stand strong! We are called to battle for the Lord. You are the Salt of the Earth. Do not allow the culture of the world to ill-flavor your walk with God. Remember it is during trying times like these that God is watching your heart. It is also during a time such as this that He will call home His bride. Are you ready?

Why is it such a divisive issue?
I think there are two simple reasons, the first being that LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bi-sexual and Transvestite) adherents and persons believe they have been discriminated against for too long. They desire to be treated equally and in their words as normal and natural citizens deserving of the rights that married couples are granted. On the other hand and secondly, Christians see this as a sign of the moral breakdown of the family unit, as God originally covenanted it to be (Gen. 1:27, 2:23-24, 3:8, 5:2, Mt. 19:4-6), and the destruction of morality in society (Rom. 1:18).1 For them it has never been about the LGBT person individually, but rather about openly flaunting and shoving an unnatural lifestyle (often portrayed in public pornographically) down their throats. Just like righteous Lot, who was oppressed by their filthy sexual conduct, so God-fearing believers today are as well. LGBT’s often go to great lengths to try and disprove the Scripture in order to justify their lifestyle before God and man. However, I honestly believe that many of them simply believe their lifestyle is natural, but they always say it in the context of themselves. For instance, ask any Gay person if they believe their lifestyle is unnatural and you find they will say, “No, it is the most natural thing for me.” So to them it is natural but to the God-fearing believer it is unnatural and unclean as is stated in the Scripture (see Romans 1:24-28, Lev. 18:22, 20:13, 1 Cor. 6:9-10; 1 Tim 1:9-10). The question is, Are they lying to themselves? Have they been told it is natural by the PC popular psychology that ignores sin and teaches I am ok- you are ok?

Who is getting on board?
Just recently J. C. Penney Corporation released in their June 2012 sales flyer the following:
JC Penney AD June 2012
Image from target.com
Image from Target.com
Home Depot
There are many others as well as our own President and the bulk of the Democratic Party as well as many Republicans that has also endorsed their lifestyles. But why? I believe to answer the question we, as God-Fearing believers, have to start by pointing fingers back at ourselves. Although it is just a hypothesis, I believe the business world is savvy enough to weigh in the balances the cost of running such offensive promotions that could impact their bottom line. Surely before an event or a promotion is scheduled they have done their homework. If my hypothesis is wrong then it would have to be that a business decision has been made whereby sales and revenue is trumped by one form of cultural inclusiveness at the expense of and the exclusion of another, in this case conservative Christianity. I believe that more and more American Businesses are seeing greater profit in targeting a culturally accepted immorality because they see the Church as non-threatening and approving. In their viewpoint, most Americans are not Christian and the majority of those who say they are have become apathetic toward their targeted markets.  On the one hand, if you weighed in the balance the sum total of the homosexual population and its supporters against the sum total of Americans who say they are Christian, homosexuality would lose out. But on the other hand, if you repeated the measure only this time opposing homosexuality with “Born-Again Conservative Christians,” specifically those who would take action against the business through a boycott, then homosexuality may win out. At least that it what I believe businesses are banking on. Therefore, they take no hit to their bottom line, increasing revenue while at the same time being “Hip” to the culture of darkness. Time will tell us if this is true.

If it is so then I believe the results would be a good metric for measuring the impact that professing Christians are having on society. Notice I did not say the Bible but professing Christians. Most professing Christians for the most part are biblically illiterate. It seems they are more driven by deceitful emotions than by the Holy Spirits promptings based upon Scriptural truths.


Will Psychology books be rewritten?
State of Illinois
On many occasions I have read where psychologists and textbooks exclaim that one of the major problems with children in our society is the defections of Fathers from the responsibilities of taking care of and rearing their children. Psychologists have said for years the proper upbringing of a child and the preparation of the child to interact in society, both socially and responsibly requires the nurturing of a present loving and caring father and mother—parents that exhibit the true characteristics of feminism, masculinity and authority.


Trish Wilson in her study, WHAT HAPPENS TO CHILDREN DEPRIVED OF THEIR NATURAL FATHERS2 documents with expertise the problems we have in society due to an imbalance of male and female nurturing. The results are astonishing:

Compared to children in male-headed traditional families where their natural parents are married to each other, children living in female-headed single-parent, lesbian or other environments where they are deprived of their natural fathers are:

1. Eight times more likely to go to prison
2. Five times more likely to commit suicide
3. Twenty times more likely to have behavioral problems
4. Twenty times more likely to become rapists
5. 32 times more likely to run away
6. Ten times more likely to abuse chemical substances
7. Nine times more likely to drop out of high school
8. 33 times more likely to be seriously abused
9. 73 times more likely to be fatally abused
10. One-tenth as likely to get A's in school
11. On average have a 44% higher mortality rate
12. On average have a 72% lower standard of living

Fathers' Absence
·         85% of all children that exhibit behavioral disorders come from fatherless homes.
·         90% of all homeless and runaway children are from fatherless homes.
·         71% of all high school dropouts come from fatherless homes.
·         75% of all adolescent patients in chemical abuse centers come from fatherless homes.
·         63% of youth suicides are from fatherless homes.
·         80% of rapists motivated with displaced anger come from fatherless homes.
·         70% of juveniles in state-operated institutions come from fatherless homes.
·         85% of all youths sitting in prisons grew up in a fatherless home.
·         California has the nation's highest juvenile incarceration rate and the nation's highest juvenile unemployment rate.
·         Juveniles have become the driving force behind the national increase in violent crime; the epidemic of youth violence and gangs is related to the breakdown of the two-parent family.
·         71% of teenage pregnancies are to children of single parents. Daughters of single parents are 2.1 times more likely to have children during their teenage years than are daughters from intact families. Daughters of single parents are 53% more likely to marry as teenagers, 164% more likely to have a premarital birth, and 92% more likely to dissolve their own marriages. All these intergenerational consequences of single motherhood increase the likelihood of chronic welfare dependency.
·         In 1983, a study found that 60% of perpetrators of child abuse were women with sole custody. Shared parenting can significantly reduce the stress associated with sole custody, and reduce the isolation of children in abusive situations by allowing both parents' to monitor the children's health and welfare and to protect them.
·         18 million children live in single-parent homes. Nearly 75% of American children living in single-parent families will experience poverty before they turn 11. Only 20% in two-parent families will experience poverty.
·         The feminization of poverty is linked to the feminization of custody, as well as linked to lower earnings for women. Greater opportunity for education and jobs through shared parenting can help break the cycle.
·         Kidnapping: family abductions were 163,200 compared to non-family abductions of 200 to 300, attributed to the parents' disenchantment with the legal system.

Again, will the books need to be re-written? How can a cultural acceptance of lesbian and gay partner parents decrease the statistics above? Will they say gender is not an issue? The real issue is it takes two “Male or Females” to raise children? Certainly availability is a factor but lesbian couples cannot emotionally share what only a true male can share. Gay male couples cannot possibly share emotionally what only a female can offer. Then there is the social casting. Which parental model will stay or become prominent? Where will children be more likely to choose their friends?

Even now I am sure that psychologists are scrambling to re-write their books and opinions if they deem that families can no longer be identified as one male united to one female.

WWJD – What would Jesus do?
In 1897 Charles Sheldon wrote the book, In His Steps. This book became an instant hit and popularized the question What Would Jesus Do? The question seemed appropriate enough and I asked myself the same but added, What word would He have for us today?

Rich Young Ruler
Choices??
As I was pondering this I was impressed with the story of the Rich Young Ruler; the reason being, he is the perfect example of an individual who would like to get into heaven on his own merits or by his own determination regardless of the Scripture. The Bible declares all men under the sovereign authority of God. Heaven is God’s home and a place where purity and holiness dwell. Scripturally speaking we were created by God to fellowship with Him in holiness. Even today we choose our friends based upon character qualities that we find to be attractive and inductive to good fellowship. We are no different in this respect when it comes to a relationship with our heavenly Father. “We love Him because He first loved us” 1 John 4:19. He promises eternal life in His presence to all who will come to Him on His terms. In the story of the Rich Young Ruler below the emphasis is on eternal life and what one must do to receive it. Jesus’ answer is simple—one must be perfect or without spot or blemish.

16 Now behold, one came and said to Him, "Good Teacher, what good thing shall I do that I may have eternal life?" 17 So He said to him, "Why do you call Me good? No one is good but One, that is, God. But if you want to enter into life, keep the commandments." 18 He said to Him, "Which ones?" Jesus said, "'You shall not murder,' 'You shall not commit adultery,' 'You shall not steal,' 'You shall not bear false witness,' 19 'Honor your father and your mother,' and, 'You shall love your neighbor as yourself.' " 20 The young man said to Him, "All these things I have kept from my youth. What do I still lack?" 21 Jesus said to him, "If you want to be perfect, go, sell what you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me." 22 But when the young man heard that saying, he went away sorrowful, for he had great possessions. Matthew 19:16-22 (NKJV)

The question posed by the young man reveals the omniscience of Jesus. Before anything came out of the his mouth, Jesus already knew his intention. When he asks, "Good Teacher, what good thing shall I do that I may have eternal life?" Jesus responds with a question and a clear truth. The question, "Why do you call Me good?” is Jesus’ way of highlighting the answer to his question concerning eternal life. To get there one must be “Good”. This is emphatic in His statement of truth, “No one is good but One, that is, God.”  Deductive reasoning tells us to be with the Father one must be “good”. What does ‘good” mean? Let’s let the text answer it. Jesus response was then to “keep the commandments.” The Ten Commandments now come into play but not in the sense of stoic adherence and rigid law, because if that were the case the young man may have been the only case ever of one to inherit eternal life based solely upon his ability to keep every law. But that was not the case. The Scripture is clear defining all of humanity under sin, Rom. 3:9-18, 23.

The Ten Commandments are living laws; meaning they are not exclusively a set of do’s and don’ts but rather a set of do’s and don’ts that require action in order to be perfectly carried out. For example, for the civil law, “you must come to a complete stop at all stop signs” to be fully carried out to the letter of the law, I must first be in motion. If I meet that requirement and by my action come to a complete stop at the sign, I fulfilled the requirement of the law. In the same vein the commandment, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself “ cannot be fully carried out unless I am willing to sell all that I have in accordance with God’s will for my life personally (each person is different), and then give it to the poor. If the young man really wanted to be “good” and “perfect” then He needed to first hear God’s directive for his life, then obey it accordingly. Pure “Perfection” or “Goodness” is only something God possesses. The young man showed he was beholden to his riches over his love for God and man. Therefore, he went away sad because that sacrifice was one he was not willing to act upon. But the story doesn’t end there.

Keeping the law even by action would still not be enough. Jesus also told him if he was willing to hear God’s directive, that once complete, to “Follow Me.” It is this last directive that underscores what is really needed to inherit eternal life. Jesus is God in bodily form. Therefore He alone fulfilled the “good” factor. Up until He breathed His final breath as a human, He was 100% “good”. It is by laying our lives at His feet and in full submission to His directive that we live as He pleases and “Follow” Him that we can obtain eternal life. Following Him means that we must agree that His directives and revelations about life, morality, holiness and ethic are the only sure source of truth. When we see ourselves as a sinner in need of eternal life in heaven then we must realize that it is only holiness that can place us in the ranks of heavenly attendance. But we all know we are not holy by ourselves and we too are guilty of breaking the Laws of Holiness, the Ten Commandments. So what can we do? The first step is to realize our lost condition in light of God’s holiness. The second step is to repent or express the willingness to turn away from the life of sin and to follow Jesus. Jesus has defeated death. The Scripture declares that He is our “Passover”. When we take the steps to believe upon Him and accept His life as the substitution for our sinful one then we can be assured we have eternal life. But we must agree** with Him that it is sin that separates us from God and that we are all tarnished with it. Here in lies the rub. The friction between Christians and homosexuals is whether or not they accept that homosexuality is a sin. If the Old Testament law, which is undergirded by the Ten Commandments, states that homosexuality is a sin then to God it is sin. Therefore it must be repented of and placed at the feet of Christ. Then one must follow Him and grow in the wisdom and grace of God. What does it say?

20 Moreover you shall not lie carnally with your neighbor's wife, to defile yourself with her. 21 And you shall not let any of your descendants pass through the fire to Molech, nor shall you profane the name of your God: I am the LORD. 22 You shall not lie with a male as with a woman. It is an abomination. 23 Nor shall you mate with any animal, to defile yourself with it. Nor shall any woman stand before an animal to mate with it. It is perversion. 24 'Do not defile yourselves with any of these things; for by all these the nations are defiled, which I am casting out before you. 25 For the land is defiled; therefore I visit the punishment of its iniquity upon it, and the land vomits out its inhabitants. Leviticus 18:20-25 (NKJV)

Those laws are an expression of the Holy nature of God. He cannot endure iniquity and un-holiness. It is an abomination to Him. Therefore all who persist in this manner will be subject to God’s wrath.

WSCD- What should Christians do?
The Culture of Homosexuality seeks to define itself by the belief that as an independent human being and part of the human race they have a right to live as they please and not suffer discrimination because of it. That is true; all people have an inalienable right to life, this includes them. They also have the right to make choices they deem to be good for themselves and their welfare. No one would deny that. The crux of the issue has never been with that. We in the God-fearing church also have the same rights and privileges. But as a believer, we also must uphold the law of God as higher than the law of the land. In other words, we will obey the law of the land as it has been legislated until it usurps the authority of God’s law which is higher in scope and quality than that of man. If we live as God directs us then we must also oppose that which is unholy to God. If we drop our guards and we allow this sin to enter the church as an “OK to live in” sin then we ourselves can scurry to the hardware store to get a sign to read “Ichabod” (1 Sam. 4;21) an hang it above our church door. Not only will we be guilty of disrespecting and disobeying God, we will also be guilty of teaching others to do so.

God’s unlimited grace is available for the homosexual. He never turns away the one who has committed this sin any more than He would turn away the one who has committed adultery or any other sin. He can and will forgive, but to receive this we must agree with Him** that we are sinners. There is no other way.

To answer my original question in the title, “Is Fighting the Culture War Worth it?” the answer is yes. If we care about the lives of those in our society and the welfare of their future and that of their children then we must do our best to point them in the right direction, even if we are persecuted or slandered. We must be willing to give our all for God and His ways. The eternal life in heaven of others hangs in the balance!
God Bless!!
2 -- http://www.nownys.org/docs/fatherlessness%20article.pdf

**Comment by my Good Friend Adrian -> "—the words "we must agree with Him" brought to my mind the word "confess" in Scripture, as in confessing sin and confessing Christ.  As you know, in Greek the word is ὁμολογέω, a compound word meaning "to speak the same thing", ie "to  speak together to the same conclusion."  In other words homologeo (to confess) means "to agree."  Agree with whom?  Clearly from its various contexts, it means to agree with God.  In the case of Christ, to agree with all that God said of Messiah in the Old Testament, and to agree with all that Jesus said of Himself and all the Holy Spirit revealed of Him in the New.  To the point of your article—namely in relation to sin—"to confess" means to agree with God in every single thing He says about sin, its awfulness, its destructiveness, and the sinner's utter hopelessness outside of obedience to the gospel message. This entirely supports exactly what you have said: "we must agree with God." !!!!! Thanks Bro.!

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