Category Archives: homosexuality

God Made Them … Non-Binary?

I went to bed last night listening to Michael Medved’s discussion of the CBS program Gender: The Space Between.

A female caller wanted to know why conservatives just don’t allow people to be themselves. The woman identified herself as a conservative, heterosexual who was engaged to be married to a man.

Medved asked her if she believed that the natural order, by God’s design, was a man and a woman united in holy matrimony for the purpose of having offspring.

“Yes,” she replied, “but …”

Though in agreement that the family unit was the building block of human society, the caller felt that conservatives should not insert themselves into how other people live their lives.

“Attitudes are changing,” she said, “though it does seem that it has happened all of a sudden.”

Medved asked, “So homosexuals are allowed to insert themselves and overturn what is normal?”

Another caller was a man who had a unique problem. His sister told him that she wanted to become his gay brother, and that he needs to tell his children that auntie is now their uncle.

The sister grew up heterosexual. She had boyfriends. In fact, her sexual preference is men, but she feels like she is a male due to the fact that a blood test revealed she has testosterone.

A woman’s ovaries produce small levels of the male hormone, but this does not mean she is a man. Some girls, like this man’s sister, grow up as a tomboy which can often be attributed to the child’s environment. In fact, homosexuality is a symptomatic behavior of inhibited psycho-social development. Treatment, or counseling is what we should be discussing.

The CBS program introduced viewers to the concept of non-binary individuals. Non-binary means that one is neither male nor female — a psychological problem to be sure.

Binary is a word that is commonly used in math and science. In the gay lexicon it refers to people whose sexual identity is separate from their gender identity.

In other words, as one gay activist noted, some girls are born with a penis. A non-binary female explained it this way:

[Sexuality] really doesn’t have anything to do with gender at all. But there is a huge thing with like ‘Well, what, if you don’t identify as a female, then are you gay? Do you not like boys, do you like girls?’ And that’s just a whole other thing. A lot of people are really concerned with what genitalia you have, that’s what they want to know. So there have been instances with relationships that could have worked out perfectly fine if you weren’t non-binary, and after that person found out that you were, everything changed.

Viewers were led to believe that gender identity is not necessarily what is printed on an individual’s birth certificate:

There are dozens of genders, outside of just man or woman, that people can identify with.

What does the Bible say?

He created them male and female … (Genesis 5:2).

I believe that the source of all confusion and deception is Satanic. As it was in the Garden so it is today. What is so troublesome to me is that the daughters of Eve are as susceptible — just like the woman who called Michael Medved.

Not all women, to be sure, but I often hear female callers on talk radio — women who identify themselves as conservative, or Christian — who are permissive of a behavior that is hated by God. Their lack of discernment defies spiritual intuition. It’s as if their emotions and feelings inhibit the voice of the Spirit.

Then I hear the women of daytime television exhorting the sisterhood to deny their husbands conjugal rights if the men harbor incorrect thoughts. People often ask why Adam ate of the fruit. Well, he didn’t want to be denied the fruit of his wife.

Face it men, women decide who reproduce. I was taking a stroll along the beach as two women approached from the opposite direction. One of the women stopped and made eye contact, but her friend tugged on her arm and said, “No, he voted for Trump.”

I didn’t know I had the look.

Medved closed out the segment by asking, “Is this a trend?”

We have noted in recent posts how the Walt Disney Company has not only submitted to, but is creatively promoting the gay agenda. In 1998, Disney CEO Michael Eisner told homosexual activist Elizabeth Birch, executive director of the Human Rights Campaign, that 40% of Disney employees were gay. (By the way, the goal of the Human Rights Campaign is to create a genderless society.)

Though only three percent of the population, homosexuals are prominent in those industries that influence social and cultural trends. The agenda is promoted through movies, music, television and the creative arts. Strategic placement has allowed a very few to effectively change attitudes and perceptions — to redefine how people relate on the most intimate level. It totally overthrows thousands of years of human social development.

Is it a trend? In the sense that man’s nature inherently trends towards total depravity I would have to say yes. God has taken His foot off the brake, and in the style of Thelma and Louise, man is heading over the cliff … into the abyss.

Notes:

There are three stages to man’s ultimate destruction: idolatry, unnatural behavior and, finally, total depravity. This was the condition of the antediluvians — those people who lived in the age between the Garden and the Flood. Mankind is at stage two, and entering the final stage before judgment. Paul, in his letter to the Romans, described the fallen condition of man prior to Noah’s Ark:

For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Claiming to be wise, they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things.

Therefore God gave them up in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, to the dishonoring of their bodies among themselves, because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever! Amen.

For this reason God gave them up to dishonorable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature; and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error.

And since they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God gave them up to a debased mind to do what ought not to be done. They were filled with all manner of unrighteousness, evil, covetousness, malice. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, maliciousness. They are gossips, slanderers, haters of God, insolent, haughty, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, foolish, faithless, heartless, ruthless. Though they know God’s righteous decree that those who practice such things deserve to die, they not only do them but give approval to those who practice them (Romans 1:21-32).

Copyright © 2017 Eternal Christ

Disney Boycott Update

In a recent post on Messiah Gate we announced a boycott of the Walt Disney Company including its entertainment division and theme parks.

Our point of contention was Disney’s promotion of the LGBTQ political agenda. We noted the legal battles at Disney theme parks in which the company was forced to amend its family friendly policies in favor of homosexual demands.

Over the years, the entertainment division at Disney has hired a number of gay illustrators who have pressured the company to promote gay-themed story lines in its animated and live action productions.

Bottom line: Your children are a target.

Disney has come out of the closet, and is no longer a safe outlet for family entertainment. In our earlier post we brought to your attention a petition drive to boycott the Disney Channel for airing a cartoon that featured two gay characters kissing. Sponsored by the website One Million Moms, the petition had gathered 36,000 signatures. To date, over 63,000 people have signed the boycott.

Since then, Life Site News — a website dedicated to pro-life, pro-family issues — has circulated an online petition in protest of a gay scene in Disney’s new live-action adaptation of Beauty and the Beast. The goal was to collect 100,000 signatures. As of this writing, over 137,000 people have signed the petition to boycott Disney.

The company has suffered a public relations setback in its worldwide distribution of Beauty and the Beast. Muslim countries, in particular, have protested the gay scene. Malaysia, for example, demanded that Disney cut the four-minute scene from the movie. The government has since relented though it tagged the film with an age restriction so that children will not be exposed to the indoctrination.

Regarding the scene, Life Site News posted this:

The “gay” moment involves character Lefou, the sidekick of villain Gaston, played by actor Josh Gad.

Director Bill Condon: LeFou is somebody who on one day wants to be Gaston and on another day wants to kiss Gaston. He’s confused about what he wants. It’s somebody who’s just realizing that he has these feelings. And Josh makes something really subtle and delicious out of it. And that’s what has its payoff at the end, which I don’t want to give away. But it is a nice, exclusively gay moment in a Disney movie.

Despite the boycott, Beauty and the Beast became this year’s biggest box office opener when it premiered earlier this month.

Christian, where do you stand? Are you friends with the world, or a friend of Jesus Christ? Make no mistake, the Bible is quite clear … and God is unchanging. The world, on the other hand, is on a fast-track to Judgment Day.

Three percent of the population has brought the world to its knees. We are talking about a behavior that is condemned by Christians, Jews and Muslims; but celebrated by the world. When I was a youngster, homosexuality was considered a mental illness. Today, it is the avant-garde manifestation of unholy pride — in itself one of the seven deadly sins.

And Walt Disney has succumbed to the deception. A company that once defined and promoted family values can no longer be trusted to entertain our children.

People of faith remain steadfast, and protect your children. Do not let the world raise up your sons and daughters (Proverbs 22:6).

#BoycottDisney.

Notes:

It seems there is a civil war brewing in the LGBTQ community. When I was younger it was known only as the LG community — lesbian and gay. After all, bisexuals weren’t really gay. But there is strength in numbers so the LG movement became more inclusive.

How progressive.

Along the way, transgenders — and those who don’t know what they are — were welcomed under the rainbow-colored flag.

Lesbians, however, are not so sure. T and Q are not really women, they say. This has caused one homosexual activist to coin yet a new pejorative (aimed at their own) — sisophobia — which is a lesbian fear of transgenders, and those confused.

The only people who are truly confused are God-fearing men and women who dare to ask the question — “How did this all come to pass?”

Related:

The Gayest Place on Earth

One Christian’s View

Boy Scouts Surrender Faith in God

Copyright © 2017 Eternal Christ

To’aiva: A Rabbi Speaks

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From the writings of Rabbi Dr. Nachum Amsel (with comments following):

The Torah clearly states its views about the act of homosexuality. The act of homosexuality, i.e. two men having sexual relations, is prohibited (Leviticus 18:22). The act is twice called a To’aiva — an abomination …

If not for the fact that homosexuality is prevalent in Western Society today, there would be little controversy about this Torah sin. It is clearly forbidden and never condoned anywhere in the Torah.

Usually, the Rabbis do not explain the meaning of Torah words. And the meaning of abomination seems reasonably clear — it is abhorrent to God. But in this case, the Talmud does offer a specific explanation. Based on a play on the Hebrew words, the Talmud says that in the act of homosexuality, the person is straying.

The commentaries on the Talmud say that by abandoning heterosexual sexual relations, the person is straying from one of his prime goals in life — to procreate and populate the earth (Genesis 1:28). (See also  Romans 1:26). We will amplify this theme below, but this explanation does not seem to be the abhorrence that the word TO’AIVA implies in the simple meaning. The classic explanation of why homosexuality is prohibited in the Torah is because of straying, i.e. failure to populate the earth. The Chinuch explains that any ‘wasting of seed’ on homosexual relations is preventing procreation and inhabiting the earth, the prime directive of man. This prime directive is echoed by Isaiah 45:18 in describing the purpose of Creation — to be inhabited. This explanation does not point to the unholiness of the homosexual relationship, but, rather, the violation of man’s purpose on earth.

CHINUCH, MITZVAH 209

At the root of the precept lies the reason that the Eternal Lord blessed is He, desires the settlement of the world He created. Therefore, He commanded us that human seed should not be destroyed by carnal relations with males. For this is indeed destruction, since there can be no fruitful benefit of offspring from it, nor the fulfillment of the religious duty of conjugal rights (due one’s wife).

Messiah Gate Says:

To’aiva is not exclusive to the homosexual act. G-d took the life of Onan when he did not fulfill his conjugal obligations towards his deceased brother’s wife:

Then Judah said to Onan, “Go in to your brother’s wife, and perform your duty as a brother-in-law to her, and raise up offspring for your brother.” Onan knew that the offspring would not be his; so when he went in to his brother’s wife, he wasted his seed on the ground in order not to give offspring to his brother. But what he did was displeasing in the sight of the Lord; so He took his life also (Genesis 38:8-10). 

G-d created sex between a man and a woman for the purpose of procreation and bonding. The most natural form of birth control is the fear of pregnancy. The Pill radically altered — even overturned — the fundamental precepts of Biblical morality. Abortion and gay marriage have further eroded what G-d intended.

I have engaged in a lengthy debate at a gay Christian website regarding arsenokoitais (ἀρσενοκοίταις) as it is referenced in Paul’s epistles, e.g. 1 Timothy 1:10.

Arsen (men, man, male) and koitas (beds, from which we get the word coitus) is understood by gay Christians to be a condemnation of prostitution, pedophilia (pederasty) and idolatry — not homosexuality.

The moderator refutes all of the relevant Biblical text (both Torah and B’rit Chadasha) by reinterpreting Scripture contrary to the ancient Judeo-Christian tradition.

Following is a summary of my rebuttals:

… men with men (arsenes en arsesin) committing indecent acts (Romans 1:27) … 

Paul is quite clear in this passage. Subterfuge is not good hermeneutics. Otherwise I could use 1 Timothy 5:23 to justify getting drunk every night.

(Moderator called me anti-gay.)

With regards to Romans, I have read all of the contrarian viewpoints and they are not dissimilar from the faulty exegesis that asserts G-d destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah for their inhospitality.

(Moderator asked me to provide Scriptural support that Sodom and Gomorrah were destroyed for homosexuality and not inhospitality.)

Look, we can’t interpret the Bible from the bias of contemporary mores thousand of years removed from the original text. You can’t defend any type of behavior by asserting that the Bible doesn’t say what it clearly meant to the ancient people to whom it was written.

This is evident in the Halacha (Oral and Written Law) which has preserved the Rabbinic interpretation of Torah that this particular act is to’aiva — an abomination.

It is not difficult to find arguments within Reformed Judaism to support your position. However, orthodox Rabbin hold to ancient tradition. 

Ben Witherington wrote:

The word [arsenokoites] literally and graphically refers to a male copulator (cf. Sib. Or. 2:73; Greek Anthology 9.686), a man who has intercourse with another man. It is true that this term can refer to a pederast (an older man who has sex with a younger man or a youth), but the term is not a technical term for a pederast; rather, it includes consenting adult males who have sexual relationships in this manner, as well as any other form of male-to-male intercourse.

Andreas Kostenberger wrote:

In light of the discussion of teaching in the Old Testament and the book of Romans above, it appears very unlikely that what is universally condemned in the Hebrew scriptures might, in New Testament times as well as ours, be acceptable. Arsenokoitas most likely refers to the general practice of homosexuality.

It appears like that the term arsenokoitas, which does not seem to appear in the extant literature prior to the present reference, was coined by Paul or someone else in Hellenistic Judaism from the Levitical prohibition against males “lying or sleeping with males” (Lev. 18:22). This suggests that the term is broad and general in nature and encompasses homosexuality as a whole rather than merely specific aberrant subsets of homosexual behavior. This is important since some want to make arsenokoitas refer specifically to pederasty.

The argument that Paul’s use of arsenokoitas refers to pederasty falls short on six counts:

a) There was a clear and unambiguous word for pederasty (which Paul did not use), the term paiderastes.

b) The attempt to limit Paul’s condemnation to pederasty is contradicted by Paul’s reference to the male partners’ mutual desire for one another in Romans 1:27.

c) In the same passage in Romans 1:26, Paul also condemns lesbian sex, which did not involve children, so that an appeal to pederasty does not adequately account for the prohibition of same-sex relations in this passage.

d) Even if (for argument’s sake) Paul were to censure only pederasty in the passages under consideration, this would still not mean that, as a Scripture-abiding Jew, he would have approved of homosexuality as such. Quite the contrary. In contrast to the surrounding Greco-Roman world (which generally accepted homosexual acts), Hellenistic (Greco)-Jewish texts universally condemn homosexuality and treat it (together with idolatry) as the most egregious example of Gentile moral depravity.

e) Not only is Paul’s view of homosexuality as contrary to nature in keeping with the foundational creation narrative in Genesis 1 and 2, but it is also illumined by prevailing views of homosexuality in contemporary Greco-Roman culture.

f) Ancient sources do not support the idea that homosexuality was defined exclusively in terms of homosexual acts but not orientation. Paul refers to both. Some scholars erect a false dichotomy between the two, and then use the false dichotomy to reason that the concept of  ‘homosexuality’ has changed.

Final Word

Arsenokoitais is not a reference to prostitution, idolatry nor pederasty, but (as the Talmud concurs) male-to-male sexual intercourse. How curious that the teachings of Augustine, Luther and the Rabbin are irrelevant in this age of enlightenment — or deception?

Christians who have preserved (in their hearts) the original context of the eternal Word of G-d are a minority in this fallen world. Those in-name-only need to stop imitating an ostrich and prepare for the persecution. The UMC minister who chastised me for predicting a dystopian future because of his gay advocacy should read the headlines. The future is now.

The Master’s Seminary posted an article about the Bible and homosexuality on its website, and within hours received a cease and desist order to take down the post. A lamenting judge told his pastor that, by law, he now has to marry homosexual couples. Said the judge, “I cannot.” Maybe there’s room for him in the jail cell of the Kentucky clerk who refused to issue same-sex marriage licenses.

The world will be given over to a reprobate mind (Romans 1:28), but G-d is unchanging and He will not be mocked (Galatians 6:7).

Credits:

Homosexuality in Orthodox Judaism, article by Rabbi Dr. Nachum Amsel.

“Arsenokoitais” (ἀρσενοκοίταις) in 1 Timothy 1:10 (et. al.), article by John Piippo.

Witherington, Letters and Homilies for Hellenized Christians, Volume 1: A Socio-Rhetorical Commentary on Titus, 1-2 Timothy and 1-3 John, 198).

Kostenberger, God, Marriage, and Family: Rebuilding the Biblical Foundation (with David Jones)..

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Copyright © 2015 Messiah Gate

Offensive for Christ

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What does it mean to be salt and light?

… for you were formerly darkness, but now you are Light in the Lord; walk as children of Light (for the fruit of the Light consists in all goodness and righteousness and truth), trying to learn what is pleasing to the Lord (Ephesians 5:6-13).

Let your speech always be with grace, as though seasoned with salt, so that you will know how you should respond to each person  (Colossians 4:6).

You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt has become tasteless, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled under foot by men. You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden; nor does anyone light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven (Matthew 5:13-16).

We understand that salt is used as a preservative, or flavoring. The lesson is that we are to preserve the Word of God in our hearts, and share it with an unbelieving world. To season our speech with salt is to make the Gospel message more palatable. Bible commentators suggest that we can present an offensive message without being offensive, but how is that possible? When salt is poured into an open wound it stings:

For the word of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing … For indeed Jews ask for signs and Greeks search for wisdom; but we preach Christ crucified, to Jews a stumbling block and to Gentiles foolishness … (1 Corinthians 1:18-25).

Certainly, we don’t want to be offensive nor alienate our worldly friends and family. So we live our lives almost embarrassed, or ashamed of the Gospel. And who wants to be outcast as strange and foolish? Who among us will stand up and be offensive for Christ?

Red Letter Christians are probably offended at the suggestion. Jesus, they will say, was all about love and forgiveness. Oh, so Jesus Christ never offended anyone?

When His disciples had been upbraided by the Pharisees for not washing their hands before eating, Jesus confronted the lawyers for elevating their religious traditions above the commandments of God. He said to the assembled crowd that what defiles a man is not unclean hands but an unclean heart.

Then the disciples came and said to Him, “Do You know that the Pharisees were offended when they heard this statement?” (Matthew 15:12)

If the Pharisees were offended how much more the merchants whose tables were overturned by an irate Christ. The Son of God offended the world system — religious and civil. Can we do no less?

Do not think that I came to bring peace on the earth; I did not come to bring peace, but a sword (Matthew 10:24).

This is not the Jesus worshipped by flower-power hippies who have hanging in their VW van a poster of Jesus smoking pot nor liberals who co-opt Christ to promote a social gospel that is lean on theology but heavy on environmentalism, abortion rights, gay marriage, drug decriminalization and feminist radicalism.

I have long-wondered why our nation is so morally bankrupt. If 80% of the populace identify themselves as Christian then how has the nation become so degraded? How do we elect leaders that swear an oath upon the Bible, but don’t believe what it says?

Liberalism.

Government and education long ago were compromised, and now the covenant body of Christ is being sub-divided by false teachers who, like Thomas Jefferson, excise all but the red letters of Holy Scripture.

Red Letter Christians (RLC) are essentially anti-Marcion. Whereas Marcion, branded a heretic, rejected the canon of Scripture (with the exception of the Gospel of Luke and Paul’s letters) the RLC adopts a theology that cedes authority only to the words of Christ.

For some time I have researched “Christian” websites that are anti-Pauline in doctrine. At the core of these ministries is an agenda that promotes freedom of choice and gay marriage. Their theology is based on Matthew 22:36-40 (love is the greatest commandment); and Matthew 25:31-46 (the parable of the sheep and goats as suggestive of a works-based salvation — feeding the hungry, clothing the naked and visiting the sick.) The faith-based teachings found in the Pauline epistles are only subordinate text. It is evident that Paul is rejected solely on the basis that his teachings are at odds with contemporary society. So we have the right to make the Bible conform to our inclinations?

John Gerstner (Professor of Church History at Pittsburgh Theological Seminary and Knox Theological Seminary) classified the liberal gospel as a gospel of self-esteem. Doing good works makes us feel good, and it softens the ugly truth that there is no good dwelling in us. Like the observant Muslim who thinks he has to do good works to please God, but on the Day of Judgement Christ will say, Depart from me; I never knew you (Matthew 7:23).

Tony Campolo, activist leader of RLC, wrote:

The primary focus of we Red Letter Christians is on what Jesus had to say about the poor. We realize that the only description that He gave of Judgment Day (Matthew 25) was through a parable in which people were evaluated as to whether or not they fed those who were hungry, naked, sick and imprisoned. Because Evangelicals have been steeped in the theology of the Pauline Epistles before they scrutinize the teachings of Jesus in the red letters of the Bible, they have read Jesus through the eyes of Paul.

While he doesn’t deny that evangelicals are very generous towards the poor it does make you wonder what is his real agenda. Campolo insists that RLC is a non-partisan effort to wrestle Christianity from conservative evangelicals who, he says, have hijacked the faith in alliance with Republican politicos who are anti-gay and anti-feminist.

His Christian agenda sounds like the reading of the Democrat platform at the party’s presidential convention. The Gospel is somewhere hidden in a mishmash of environmental activism and wage inequality. When asked his party affiliation, Campolo will typically answer, “That is not the issue.”

So he rails about conservative Christians, but refuses to identify himself as a liberal Christian. Like Hillary Clinton, he is more comfortable with the term progressive as if that can hide a leopard’s spots. Curious how liberals define (or, in the case of marriage, redefine) certain absolutes. Abortion, for example, is not infanticide but free choice.

What liberals have to do is re-interpret Scripture that both Jews and Christians have understood for thousands of years. Progressives (oh, they are so enlightened) will say that God destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah for their inhospitality; Leviticus 18:22 suggests that it is unclean for a man to lie in a woman’s bed, and not prohibitive of gay sex; and Paul’s indictment of homosexuality was only a judgement against prostitution.

In any case, they will say, it doesn’t matter what Paul wrote because he doesn’t speak with the authority of Christ.

There is a deception in the church that is blinding the eyes and clouding the minds of those who have not a discerning spirit. The disparagement of Paul within the church is troublesome. Is it Satanic? To diminish Paul’s credentials would be to undermine two-thirds of Christian canon.

We have to be able to answer this question: By what authority did Paul speak?

Peter wrote:

… and regard the patience of our Lord as salvation; just as also our beloved brother Paul, according to the wisdom given him, wrote to you, as also in all his letters, speaking in them of these things, in which are some things hard to understand, which the untaught and unstable distort, as they do also the rest of the Scriptures, to their own destruction (2 Peter 3:15-16).

Of course, there are some within the church who doubt the authorship of 2 Peter so this passage would be inadmissible. Very well, then, may I present the testimony of Luke — acceptable even to Marcion:

Now there was a disciple at Damascus named Ananias; and the Lord said to him in a vision, Ananias. And he said, “Here I am, Lord.” And the Lord said to him, Get up and go to the street called Straight, and inquire at the house of Judas for a man from Tarsus named Saul, for he is praying, and he has seen in a vision a man named Ananias come in and lay his hands on him, so that he might regain his sight. But Ananias answered, “Lord, I have heard from many about this man, how much harm he did to Your saints at Jerusalem; and here he has authority from the chief priests to bind all who call on Your name.” But the Lord said to him, Go, for he is a chosen instrument of Mine, to bear My name before the Gentiles and kings and the sons of Israel; for I will show him how much he must suffer for My name’s sake (Acts 9:10-16).

Paul was anointed by the Lord Jesus Christ as Paul, himself, testified to the assembly at Galatia:

Paulus an Apostle, not by the children of men, neither by a son of man, but by Yeshua The Messiah and God his Father, he who raised him from among the dead …(Galatians 1:1). — Aramaic Bible

With what, then,  are we left? Jesus Christ is our Lord and Master …

… and …

All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness (2 Timothy 3:16).

There is light, though, within the RLC. An article, posted on their website, disagreed with Campolo’s interpretation of marriage. The silence of Scripture — that is, Jesus did not specifically condemn homosexuality — is not an affirmation of an act that is clearly condemned in both Jewish and Christian canon. The article honestly cited the Bible’s clarity on marriage, and that sexual intercourse between a man and a woman is the Biblical norm.

We’ve only peeled a few layers off this theological onion. Liberals within the church dispute essential Christian doctrine regarding the deity of Christ, resurrection, faith and salvation. They teach that confession and repentance are unnecessary in this age of grace. Feed the poor and you’ll be okay. Everything else is religion. Jesus, they will say, had no problem with sinners, but with religious people.

How should we respond? Meekness does not mean that we dim our light or lose our savor. In this ongoing spiritual battle we must courageously decide to be offensive for Christ — in the world and from the pew. Let your light be a blinding light, and your words like a two-edged sword.

Remember: Christian love is corrective — not permissive.

Reference:

The Liberal View of Justification, article by John Gerstner.

Red Letter Christianity: A New Name for Progressive Evangelicals, article by Tony Campolo.

When Red Is Blue: Why I am not a Red-Letter Christian, article by Stan Guthrie.

The Problem with Being a Red Letter Christian, article by Ian Paul.

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Copyright © 2015 Messiah Gate

Molded in Obedience

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In the beginning … (Genesis 1:1).

God created you. From nothing we were created. In everything we owe Him … including a sin debt that only the Son could pay.

But what is sin? When a court decides, for example, that pornography cannot be defined (because obscenity is an abstract concept) then we can more clearly understand how moral relativism — a human construct — lies in disobedient opposition to the constraints of a righteous God. We decide what is right based upon our fallen sense of social justice — a paradigm that has become gospel for liberal Christians.

Pastor Kevin DeYoung (of The Gospel Coalition) posed 40 questions for Christians who are waving the rainbow flag. His article has been shared (to date) 400,000 times on Facebook, and tweeted 3000 times. [1]

Here’s a sampling:

Question 7: When Jesus spoke against porneia what sins do you think he was forbidding?

Question 11: As you think about the long history of the church and the near universal disapproval of same-sex sexual activity, what do you think you understand about the Bible that Augustine, Aquinas, Calvin, and Luther failed to grasp?

[Is God not as enlightened as you?]

Question 13 has been on my mind as a Christian who is politically active. How is it that the man who sits in the White House, and the woman who aspires to succeed him, have defended the historical, cultural, social and Biblical definition of marriage? Until now.

Sin, or moral transgression, is incontrovertibly defined in the Torah. There were sins unto death (see related 1 John 5:16) — many of which were of the provincial nature of sexual immorality. God unmistakably hates sexual sin. He created sex for the purpose of reproduction which can only be conceived between a man and a woman. The proper and natural use of sex is beautiful (and undefiled). It sanctifies — makes holy — the bed of matrimony.

Evil perverts and distorts that which is ordained, and makes it unclean. The world — which is under the power of the Wicked One — conforms to the deception because it appeals to the carnal nature of man. Christians, some of whom are in bondage to the flesh, are exhorted to not be conformed to this world  (Romans 12:2).

In this age of grace we do not stone people to death for committing adultery. Is God lax in His judgement? Of course not. His disapproval of sin is not unchanged and will be dealt with on the last day. But in this dispensation (note small letter “d”) we have been given the opportunity to receive mercy through the blood of the Lamb.

We will all die physically because of sin, but those who reject Jesus Christ will suffer even the death of their soul. Pews are full of christians who sit in church, but walk in step with the world. To conform to the world is to reject the Son of God.

You may call yourself a Christian, but do you humbly (and without condition) yield your life to Christ? Are you obedient to Him, or are you a friend of the world? The world celebrates immorality. Bluntly speaking, Christians who march under a rainbow flag thumb their noses at the face of God.

Why does the LORD so hate this type of sin? Porneia (πορνεία) was idolatry — a moral transgression associated with fornication, prostitution, bestiality, incest, adultery and homosexuality. Such were these offenses commonly practiced in the pagan world where creature worship was the prevalent religion.

Israel was commanded to drive out evil from the land of Canaan — a typology of the uncircumcised — and to not associate with nor intermarry the inhabitants. Israel (and Judah) were not so obedient as they conformed to, and adopted, the sinful practices of their godless neighbors. The people of God became so degenerate and perverted that the male cult prostitutes (homosexuals) operated sex booths in the temple of God (2 Kings 23:7). 

Sexual immorality is an abomination unto the LORD. Alluding to this, the Pharisees said to Jesus, “We are not born of fornication” (John 8:41). Though they meant, in context, to defend their legitimacy as sons of Abraham — it was also a slight by some to question the birth of Jesus. Either Joseph “knew” Mary before they were married, or she had relations with one not her betrothed. By the second century a number of pagan writers commonly dismissed the Matthean account of the virgin birth of Christ while the “church” faithfully upheld the tenet of Mary’s purity; and that sex was in the confine of Holy Matrimony. Conforming to the world’s practice is a lie.

So, then, what is honored by God (before marriage) is abstinence and virginity. That is not, however, what the world proclaims nor do some Christians obey.

We are so moved by human sensibilities that we can’t hear the voice of the LORD. Surely, it is righteous to permit women to abort their children. Allowing for the varied reasons why this procedure is done we have to consider that, in most cases, it is simply a form of birth control. The Center for Disease Control records that 85.5% of abortions are performed on unmarried women. [2]

Delicately speaking, people who are having abortions should not be having irresponsible sex. People, and some Christians, hate me for saying so, but chastity is a virtue.

And I am comforted by the words of my Master:

If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you (John 15:18). 

We don’t seem to understand that this is God’s world. We humbly serve Him. He made the rules. Isn’t that the way of life within the nuclear family? Where do we get the right to countermand His laws because they offend us? Where is it written in Holy scripture that God favors unnatural or extra-marital sex? Why did Jesus affirm the Genesis account of marriage (Matthew 19:4-6)?  Yes, God is love although agape love is not permissive, but corrective. Again, not unlike the nuclear family where parents make the rules and punish the child who disobeys.

The train, my brothers, is off the track. And Christians who have punched their ticket on this journey are in peril of discovering that it is one-way only. Be ever mindful that you are the clay — God is the potter.

His will be done.

Notes:

1. 40 Questions for Christians Now Waving Rainbow Flagsby Pastor Kevin DeYoung, The Gospel Coalition.

2. Abortion Surveillance, Division of Reproductive Health, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Center for Disease Control, 2011.

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Marriage

Genesis-2-24

But from the beginning of creation, God MADE THEM MALE AND FEMALE. “FOR THIS REASON A MAN SHALL LEAVE HIS FATHER AND MOTHER, AND THE TWO SHALL BECOME ONE FLESH; so they are no longer two, but one flesh (Mark 10:6-8).  

I don’t know what is a selfie. I don’t know how the pound sign (#) became a hashtag. But, more importantly, I do not know when God redefined marriage.

Red-letter atheists will contend that Jesus never said a word about marriage. (We can’t expect unbelievers to know, or even correctly interpret, the Word of God.) Might our Lord be tried in a court of law — even the Supreme Court — for hate speech because he dared to quote from the Torah?

How unimaginable that the testimony of Mark’s gospel might be used as evidence to convict the Son of God. May I so be convicted.

Truth becomes a lie:

Therefore God gave them over in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, so that their bodies would be dishonored among them. For they exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen. For this reason God gave them over to degrading passions; for their women exchanged the natural function for that which is unnatural, and in the same way also the men abandoned the natural function of the woman and burned in their desire toward one another, men with men committing indecent acts and receiving in their own persons the due penalty of their error. And just as they did not see fit to acknowledge God any longer, God gave them over to a depraved mind, to do those things which are not proper (Romans 1:24-28).

When did an unnatural act become an alternative lifestyle — to be condoned by society?

Evil speaks truth, but with a distorted twist. Right becomes wrong, and good becomes bad. Satan did not lie to Eve when he told her she would not die from eating the forbidden fruit (Genesis 3:4). Indeed, Eve ate of the fruit and lived. But the serpent’s deception concealed a greater truth that, by sin, Adam and Eve would eventually pay the price for their transgression.

And, so, evil seeks to undo the societal construct by which men and women (for millennia) have sworn a solemn vow. Make no mistake. It is a God construct. The institution of marriage is a typology of the relationship between the Son of God and His church. It is Holy … inviolate … undefiled … and unchanged.

“Oh,” some will say, “Alternative families should have the same rights and privileges to rear children.”

Ah, that is the point. Only a man and a woman can procreate — and by design.

Any other definition is a corruption and, dare I say, an abomination.

The people have long denied the sanctity of life … and, now, the holiness of marriage.

Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, this he will also reap. For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life (Galatians 6:7-8).

May God have mercy.

Credits:

Scripture — New American Standard Bible, Lockman Foundation, 1995.

Image — Wallpaper4God.com

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The Bride of Christ

bride

The Word of God:

For this is the will of God, your sanctification; that you abstain from sexual immorality (1Th 4:3).

We wanted to revisit the topic of an earlier post, God Defined Marriage, to emphasize that God does not single out homosexuals, but hates all sexual sin.

John is told in the Book of Revelation that murderers, liars, idolaters, sorcerers, cowardly, abominable and immoral (pornois) persons will be cast into the lake of fire (Rev 21:8). Pornoisfrom which we derive the English word porn, or pornography, always refers to sexual immorality including fornication (premarital sex), adultery (sex outside of marriage), homosexuality, incest and bestiality.

Sex is a gift from God to be shared by a man and woman within the bond of holy matrimony. This, of course, elicited a liberal backlash to our opposition to same-sex unions. Unmarried heterosexuals took issue with our condemnation of premarital sex as fornication. Liberals seem to think that fornication is sex with a prostitute, but not with your boyfriend or girlfriend, or live-in partner.

The Catholic Church condemns fornication and promiscuity as…

…a denigration of both women and men, viewing them as nothing more than objects of sexual pleasure rather than creatures made in the image and likeness of God [Source].

There is no sanctified bond between unmarried couples. Fornication is uncommitted narcissism, and it says to the other person that I love myself more than I love you. It is an abomination and a sin in the eyes of the Lord.

Immorality was a problem in the church at Corinth to the degree that Paul said not even the Gentiles were guilty of such wickedness (see also Gal 5:19-20):

Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God. Such were some of you; but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, and in the Spirit of our God (1Co 6:9-11).

Paul uses the example of a prostitute to explain that every sin a man commits is outside the body, but sexual immorality is a sin against one’s own flesh. A man who has sex with his girlfriend is joining his body and spirit to her for it is written: The two shall become one flesh (Ge 2:24). What, then, if they have multiple partners? To whom are they married?

In Jn 4:16-18 Jesus tells the woman at the well to: Go, call your husband and come here. The woman replies that she has no husband whereupon Jesus reveals that she’s had five husbands, and the one whom you now have is not your husband.

Your girlfriend is not a wife. Your boyfriend is not a husband. Your live-in partner is not a spouse. What therefore God has joined together, let no man separate (Mk 10:9). The Greek word synezeuxen (joined) connotes the gluing, or cementing of a relationship. Virginity is the greatest gift that a man and a woman can give to one another. That is an old fashioned idea, but it is holy and righteous before God. Imagine if Mary, the mother of Jesus, had not preserved her virginity.

Marriage is a holy institution ordained by God to be righteously consummated in heaven at the marriage supper of the Lamb. It is not to be mocked, nor defiled. On this issue the church is wavering.

The Episcopal Church has approved a liturgy for blessing same-sex unions; the Evangelical Lutheran Church and Presbyterian Church (USA) permit congregations to support and bless same-sex unions; the Unitarian Congregations and Reform Jewish movement support same-sex marriage; the United Church of Christ recognizes same-sex marriage; and while the United Methodist Church has reaffirmed that marriage is between a man and a woman there is regional pressure to recognize same-sex unions.

While homosexual marriage is gaining acceptance within the church we are equally dismayed by heterosexual promiscuity. We sat in with a group of young Christian women expecting that they might be conducting an impromptu Bible study, but were shocked to hear that they were talking about sex and birth control. One of the women boasted that she slept with a different man every weekend. When we inquired whether these were Christian men one of the women emphatically replied that she doesn’t date Christian men. Evidently, the young woman hadn’t read Paul’s instruction to be not unevenly yoked:

Do not be bound together with unbelievers; for what partnership have righteousness and lawlessness, or what fellowship has light with darkness? Or what has a believer in common with an unbeliever (2Co 6:14-15)?

It is perplexing why women, particularly women of faith, are desirous of roguish men, but as one of the Christian ladies said: It’s challenging and fun. SoChristian men aren’t fun?

We suspect that most disobedience is due to ignorance, or unbelief. People either don’t know what the Bible says about sex and marriage, or they simply don’t believe the Word of God. The LORD pulls no punches in the Book of Leviticus (Lv 20:11-21) regarding His condemnation of sexual immorality. Incest, adultery, fornication, bestiality, and homosexuality all incurred the death penalty. This offends the sensibilities of the world, but it serves as a sobering reminder to the faithful that we are to present ourselves holy and blameless before God:

Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship (Ro 12:1).

Christian men (and women) who have a problem with pornography are no less innocent. Jesus Christ raised the standard above and beyond Old Testament statutes when He said that everyone who  looks at a woman (or man) with lust has already committed adultery in their heart (Mt 5:28).

We knew a married woman, some time ago in a different town, who committed adultery with a neighbor’s 13-year old son. We  moved to another city, but years later (maybe after her prison sentence) she showed up at our neighborhood church. Paul instructs us to not associate with immoral brethren (1Co 5:11) so we received her very cautiously.

This is all a puzzle to those who are faithless; but marriage is the mystery that reveals Jesus Christ. In his letter to the church at Ephesus, Paul quotes from the Old Testament:

For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and shall be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh. This mystery is great; but I am speaking with reference to Christ and the church (Eph 5:31-32).

The body of Christ is His bride; the dowry paid is His blood on the cross; and the marriage feast will take place after He returns His bride to the Father’s house. This is why we must defend the tradition of marriage. Sexual immorality and same-sex marriage are direct attacks which subvert and undermine this sacred and holy institution established by God.

Let us rejoice and be glad and give the glory to Him, for the marriage of the Lamb has come and His bride has made herself ready (Rev 19:7).

Brethren, we are the bride of Christ. Have you made yourself ready?

Suggested Reading:

What is the Marriage Supper of the Lamb?

Next: God Defined Marriage 

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