Today a story caught my eye. Although I have observed the lurching away from the truth by many “Christian” leaders in the limelight, I was a little amazed at this. According to WorldNetDaily, an emergent church leader by the name of Tony Jones has declared that the church should definitely support homosexual relationships and yes, even marriage.
“I now believe that GLBTQ can live lives in accord with biblical Christianity (as least as much as any of us can!),” writes author and church leader Tony Jones, “and that their monogamy can and should be sanctioned and blessed by church and state.”
There you have it. While I agree that anyone can live lives in accord with Biblical Christianity, I would be so bold as to say that they actually have to accept the authority of the Bible to do so. How in the world can you call Christianity Biblical when it denies something that is plain in Scripture? Are we to infer that God was a tad-bit shortsighted when He included all of those statements about homosexuality being wrong or sinful or did I miss the sermon of Jesus that said it was OK for John and Peter to “get married”? When Jesus talked about marriage, he invariably harkened back to the original plan of God as visioned with Adam and Eve. He even quoted from Genesis about the two becoming “one flesh.
4“Haven’t you read,” he replied, “that at the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female,’ 5and said, ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh’? 6So they are no longer two, but one. Therefore what God has joined together, let man not separate.” – Matthew 19:4-6
In fact, if you read this passage in its entirety, you will see that Jesus had a very high view of the sanctity of marriage between a man and a woman and against adultery and divorce and says if that is too hard for you to live with, then don’t even get married. But perhaps Jesus just didn’t foresee our current climate. Why else would He forget to say it was OK for homosexuals to continue to do whatever they wanted to do if they just do in monogamously.
What we have here is a failure of some in Christianity to be Biblically sound. They have adopted instead a “civil religion”. I have been reading a great book called God in the Wasteland, by David Wells. In this book, he talks about this same phenomenon. He says that the problem with civil religion is “it tends to be civil the sense that it is inoffensive. It has no edges because it is driven not by a passion for God’s truth but by the politics of the day, whatever those politics might be.”
Jones admits in the article that this is essentially what has happened to him:
Despite recounting his earlier days of arguing that “biblical prohibitions to homosexual sex should be taken seriously,” Jones admits his experiences and feelings led him toward a different conclusion.
“And yet,” Jones writes, “all the time I could feel myself drifting toward acceptance that gay persons are fully human persons and should be afforded all of the cultural and ecclesial benefits that I am.”
Did you notice what is guiding the theology here? It is experiences and feelings. Apparently, God just isn’t smart enough to get it “right”. God isn’t sensitive enough to care about those people or these people like Tony Jones is. I am not worried about a “leftward slide” of the church so much as I am a complete abandonment of God for a God of our own making.
The homosexual movement and agenda pose the biggest conundrum to date for the church because they insist on identifying themselves primarily with their chosen form of rebellion against God. Homosexuality is a sin. It is a sin just like lying, theft, murder, adultery, fornication, gossiping, idolatry, greed, and any other form that disobedience to God takes. Wells writes later in his book that it is important for the church to recognize how sin is made to look normal in the modern world so that we are able to discern it for what it is. Homosexuality is the touchstone for an entire generation of whether or not sin can be redefined into acceptable practice within Christianity. For Tony Jones and those like him, apparently it can.
Paul had a different view. In 1 Corithians 5, Paul lambastes the Corinthian church for its pride in “accepting” a member in the body who was committing adultery with his own father’s wife. As Christians we are called to love others, but we are not supposed to tell them that whatever they choose to do is right. God has given us His Word to tell us what is right and what is wrong. His ideas didn’t go out of date. They haven’t expired and He isn’t so shortsighted that He never saw the day coming when homosexuality would be considered not only acceptable but honored. This is just the tip of the iceberg really. Our modern and postmodern culture would seek to redefine all of God’s truth in light of their own “enlightenment”. As believers of the real Truth, we must be willing and ready to stand on the Rock.