I recently read an online article called 6 Ways Christians Lost This Week that immediately caught my attention but took a bit longer to process. The article seemed to say that because of some Christian responses to the SCOTUS ruling legalizing gay marriage, Christians ‘lost’ the following:
1) We lost the chance to be loving.
2) We lost the chance to be good neighbors.
3) We lost the chance to be Good Samaritans.
4) We lost the opportunity to show how big God is.
5) We lost the chance to reflect Christ.
6) We lost people.
There were explanations around those points, and even a few passages of scripture (taken out of context) to support the idea of Christians having ‘lost’ things, but what struck me was that the author claimed that Christians ‘lost’ all these things at all!. How could that be? How could we ever just lose ‘chances’ and ‘opportunities’? We can no longer reflect Christ to gay persons? Some Christians have been lost to the faith because of the responses of other Christians? None of it made any sense to me.
To find answers to my questions I took a closer look at the author’s web site and went straight to the ‘What We Believe’ page. Sadly, my questions were answered. The author proudly attends an ‘Emergent’ church in North Carolina. Among all of the core, and thoroughly emergent, beliefs of this church two statements stood out among the typical ‘emergent’ beliefs and practices mentioned at the church’s website:
1. “The scriptures are inspired by God: They are the words of humans.” (Emphasis mine)
2. “At ________, we believe that sin is not that big of a deal.”
The belief that the scriptures are inspired by God but are the words of humans is quite telling. It allows for a casual ‘head nod’ to God’s involvement in the development of scripture, but denies the authority of the Bible by claiming that the words in scripture are the words of humans, not God. .In the case of gay marriage, the humans who penned some really clear ‘words’ concerning homosexuality must have so totally misunderstood God’s ‘inspiration’ that they wrote down the exact opposite of God’s opinion/intent!
As for the thought that “sin is just not that big of a deal”, what can I say but that sin (any and all sin) is a VERY big deal with God. In fact, it’s such a big deal that it deserves eternal punishment in a place called Hell. It’s such a big deal that God sent his Son to live the perfect life that no man could (but must to inherit eternal life) and then poured out his just wrath upon his Son instead of us who deserve it!
So why is it again that Christians ‘lost’ so much? What did we do exactly? Some of us behaved rather poorly and didn’t communicate a lot of love in our responses. However, if the Holy Spirit is in the process of awakening blind eyes to the message of the gospel, even a message delivered poorly will accomplish God’s intent. Then there are those who ‘lovingly’ communicated God’s opinion in the matter at hand (quoted scripture). How did they cause such devastating ‘losses’? They DIDN’T. The Bible I read tells me that those living in sin and darkness love their sin and darkness. Furthermore, I don’t believe for a New York second that any true believer would deny his/her faith because he/she was informed of the truth of scripture. True believers are indwelt by the Holy Spirit who brings conviction of sin, maybe not right away, but eventually. And after conviction comes healing by the same power of God.
Then there were the comments to the original article, which are probably somewhere north of 1K by now. Many, if not most contain little if any value at all. Diatribes against ‘hateful’ Christians who refuse to affirm gay marriage and homosexuality as being approved of by a ‘loving’ God. Then there are those little verbal tennis matches between commentators on both sides of the debate, with both sides being less than polite in their discourse. I couldn’t keep up with all the scripture twisting or the claiming as scripture things that are nowhere written in the Bible – and by professing Christians!
I have no doubt that those who claimed Christ while affirming gay marriage were sincere. Their comments communicated their limited knowledge of the attributes of God. Their comments reflected that Gods only attribute is ‘love’. While I am equally certain that their ignorance is due to the lack of sound doctrine being taught in some of the churches they attend, they have no excuse for remaining ignorant. There is more access to the Bible today than ever before, in every form imaginable!
Would you pray with me that the Spirit of God would cause a deep desire in the hearts professing Christians who seem to be ‘children of a lesser God’ to really get to know God through his inspired Word. Relevant passages clearly stating what’s what concerning the big issue of the day have been shared numerous times. I am confident that those whose hearts have been opened by God will listen. Others will remain in their hardened state and continue to call us hateful for standing on God’s word and shake their fists at God.