December 7, 2015

Facing the Challenge: Now What?

Maybe we have had enough time now to get used to the idea that the Supreme Court has changed our country’s official definition of marriage. Certainly Christian people in the United States ought to draw conclusions and make decisions about what they will do about the new situation. Here are seven things we surely ought to do.

Without a doubt, it is time for Christian families to take their children out of the public schools. Public education has been wrong and dangerous for Bible-believing families for many years, but it is even more so now with the new marriage mandate. It will not be permissible for state-sponsored schools to present traditional marriage as the norm any more. Since same-sex “marriages” are as legal as traditional marriages, they will be presented as equally normal and acceptable. It will not be allowed for teachers speak of daddy-and-mommy homes as the standard, nor two-mommy or two-daddy homes as anomalies. A child’s whole view of family and marriage will be perverted, and his life will likely be ruined. We cannot afford to leave the kids in public education. It is now absolutely necessary that Christian families choose a Christian option for the schooling of their children. Some may worry that if there were a mass exodus from the public school districts there could be real damage done. Yet, if you think about it, the widespread abandonment of the school system could be the best and most powerful wake-up call of the people in response to the cultural collapse that is now happening. Hardly anything would do this country more good than a wholesale withdrawal of students from the public schools. Every other response would be weak in comparison. Now the disaster of the court ruling is being met with barely a whimper of protest. Pulling our kids out would do a lot of good for society as well as for our families and the next generation.

It is time to take a stand against the new definition of marriage. We will have to take our stand in order to stay true to our faith in the Word of God. In 2016, just a few politicians running for office will openly oppose the court decision, and propose constitutional steps to undo it. Christians should openly support those who do. Everybody running for any office this coming year should know about the millions who reject “gay marriage,” and should fear us to some degree. We must not be silent. Both Republicans and Democrats should expect to pay a political price for compromising with the immoral, illegal, untraditional, irrational, and unnatural concept of homosexual “marriage.” Some Christians ought (as the Lord directs them) to run for office this year, and the rest of us must consider supporting them.

Get your nose in the Bible, and renew your mind for these confusing days. Study the Word and learn what it says about marriage, sex, and homosexuality. Don’t just repeat slogans or follow your gut feelings about this emotional issue. Study it out from the viewpoint of scripture. Ask your pastor to preach sermons and teach lessons on these subjects. Know the facts, and think along with the Lord about this whole thing. Make scriptural and reasonable statements about the issue to those you can influence.

Love those who have “come out” as living the homosexual way, and seek to win them to Christ. Recognize that “homosexual” is not a word that describes what someone is, but rather identifies something that he or she does. See the person trapped in this lifestyle as a person, and not as an object of scorn. Approach them with the Gospel, and not first with condemnation for this particular sin. In other words, seek to win them to Christ in the same way that you witness to other sinners. Remember that you are a sinner, too, and that Christ came to save sinners (First Timothy 1:15). Of course you should be ready to answer questions that they may have, just as you should be prepared to answer the questions of others with special hindrances to coming to Christ. Treat them all as human beings, and let God break your heart for their predicament (Matthew 9:36-38). The Gospel is the solution to their bondage and misery (read again Romans 1). Have compassion on them all, and tell them the Good News.

“Gay marriages,” although recognized by the state, are not marriages by any rational, natural, traditional, or scriptural definition of the term. So we must not recognize them as such. Christians must be ready to lose their money, respect, and even their freedom, as a consequence of standing for and telling the truth. It isn’t love that would motivate us to recognize same-sex unions as marriages. It is the fear of reprisals. It is a lie to describe them as marriages, and the consequences to the partners are many and dire. The homosexual lifestyle is the most degrading, disease-producing, and depressing way of life known to man. The statistics prove it. Don’t be rude but don’t treat the weddings as weddings or the marriages as marriages, and don’t treat homosexuality as normal and healthy.

Homosexual people are not “born that way.” Science contradicts the popular notion that the homosexual orientation is genetic. Other factors lead to it, as counsellors have recognized for years. The current idea that people discover their sexuality as they grow up, and that gender cannot by determined by anatomical factors, will draw many more of the young and impressionable into the homosexual life. This is a reason to keep kids out of the public schools, away from the popular media, and from influences that blur correct gender distinctions and roles. Bring up little girls as girls, and little boys as boys, and dress them appropriately. The Bible makes a distinction in gender appearances and activities (Genesis 1:27, Deuteronomy 22:5, First Corinthians 11:4-15), and Christian families should do so also.

The answer to society’s ills and insanities is the answer to mankind’s plight: His name is Jesus Christ. Sins and every perversion of God’s original and ideal plan for mankind have resulted from Adam’s original rebellion. The answer to all of these evils has been provided by the Second Adam, Jesus (see Romans 5:10-15 and First Corinthians 15:20-49). Those who have believed in Him for their personal salvation are charged with taking the message of His love and redemption to every person in the world. The reason our world has become so dark is the failure of Christians to keep the Gospel charge. And revival is the work God does in which He brings His people back to the place they ought to be. The great American revivals transformed our society by making the Christians what they are intended by their Lord to be: the light of the world, the salt of the earth, and empowered witnesses for the Savior. Our nation needs another “great awakening,” and we can have one, if believers will forsake their sins, humble their hearts, and seek the Lord (see James 4:1-10). The homosexual crisis is upon us because God’s servants have failed to be revived, and the Gospel has not gone forward as it should. Our primary responsibility today is to draw near to God for the revival we need. In every community, we should gather for revival prayer meetings, for preaching aimed at revival, and for efforts to spread the Gospel everywhere. The disintegration of society has resulted from the failure of Christians to take their place in the world. We must step up to the plate, and show the world that Jesus is the Way to peace and to deliverance.

Dr. Rick Flanders
Revival Ministries