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Posts Tagged ‘Culture Wars

It’s Easy to Be Racist When You See Men As Animals

Racism is always a hot topic.  I grew up in the South of the United States.  As most people know (who know history), the South was mainly where many of the Africans came when the US brought slaves over in the Trans-Atlantic slave trade.  The North and South fought the Civil War (not primarily) over the issues of slavery.  The US Civil War brought a new history of racism to the South.  After the Civil War, Northern leaders forced Southern plantation owners to give up of their land to the new freed slaves.  The idea was to help former slaves become independent but what it brought was hatred from the Southern whites toward their former slaves.  After the era of Reconstruction ended just a few years after the Civil War, the South created “Jim Crow” laws which ensured segregation and when the US Supreme Court upheld “separate but equal” rulings, the South created law after law to keep former slaves down.

I grew up long after the Civil War was fought of course and I grew up in a integrated society.  In the 1960’s, the Civil Rights movement begin in the South and brought down the Jim Crow laws.  This was a good thing in my estimation.  For the life of me, I can’t understand how Christians could hate people based on the color of the skin.  How in the world do you read John 13:34-35 or 1 John 4:20-21 and still approve of racism?

When I was in elementary school, my school was mainly white.  The black friends I had were great and we got along well.  When I got to middle school, they forced three schools to combine because of race (two of the schools were about 80% black or higher and the middle school I was suppose to attend was probably 80% white).  The whites who could went to private schools.  The school went from 500 students to over 1200 students (in middle school) with over 70% black.  It was here that I begin to see racism like never before.  This racism was aimed at me for my skin color.

Over the next 7 years of school (my high school today is 100% black but at the time was about 90% black), I was taught that I was guilty of many sins against the black man for it was my ancestors who had owned slaves.  I was taught that whites should be ashamed, forced to pay money to blacks for the sins of our fathers.  I was taught that the problems with the black community could be laid at the feet of whites.  I was hated for just being white.  And in turn, I begin to hate back.

Now to be fair, I played baseball in school and had black team mates and we got along great.  I also had black friends outside of sports who were dear to me.  Keep in mind also I was not saved.

At 17 I was saved.  This opened my eyes to my own racism and to my need to repent.  Our Bible study group was mainly white but we reached out to black pastors and black students to try to bring healing and show the power of the gospel to bring down divisions.  The church I attended had several black families in it and I loved them dearly.

My point here is that I saw where racism was (in our wicked hearts).  I saw how it was fed.  We were taught in school that we were products of naturalistic evolution.  We were just glorified animals.  We were not created in the image of God.  I could see how racism could grow in that environment.  We are nothing but animals.  You kill an animal, it just ceases to exist.  No right or wrong.  Only animals.  The whites use to point at the blacks and call them “monkeys” while I am sure black people called us names as well.  Racism was alive and well and why should it not be in such a wicked environment.

Look at our world today.  For the last 50 years we have been teaching nothing but secular humanism.  We have taught that people are animals, that evolution is true, that morality is based on individual liberty.  We have taught people to look to the Government for help, to fight your battles, to solve your problems, to take from your neighbor and give to you.  We have rejected the gospel as a foundation.  We have turned our back on our Christian heritage.  We have been taught to kill just for the sake of killing and there is no God so nothing will happen anyway.  And we wonder why racism still exists?  We wonder why wicked sinners kill?

When I begin to see that my black neighbors are made in the image of God (Genesis 1:26-27 ) and that Christ died for them, that changed my views.  I would  be lying if I said that all racism is gone from my heart.  I have to fight it but I fight it with the gospel.  Jesus didn’t die for Jews only or for Gentiles only but He died for all sinners (Luke 19:10; 1 Timothy 2:3-6).  The gospel goes out to all people (Matthew 28:19-20).  In Revelation 5:9-10 we read that God has His people from every tribe, tongue and nation.  God is no respecter of persons (Romans 2:10).  The Bible is clear that whosoever can call upon the name of the Lord and be saved (Romans 10:13).  Thus the gospel is not for Jews only but for all (Romans 11:32).

What our society needs is the gospel.  The gospel tears down the sins of our hearts.  The gospel brings people together in unity like nothing else (Ephesians 2:14).  The blood of Jesus cleanses us from all sin (1 John 1:7) and Jesus shed His blood for all races.  When we see that people are created in the image of God, we see that they are truly loved by God (John 3:16).  The Chinese person.  The Japanese person.  The white person.  The black person.  The Hispanic person.  They all are made in the image of God.  They are not animals.  They are loved by God and He desires to save them by His grace.

My prayer is that the gospel will go forth and save every racist.  The truth is that Jesus died for all sinners (Romans 3:23) and all sinners need salvation which comes not by skin color or by language but by the grace of God (Ephesians 2:8-9).  The gospel is color blind.  The gospel is the cure for our society because the gospel transform a man into seeing that another man is created in the image of God.  The gospel shows us that despite our culture or our color, Jesus shed His blood for our salvation.  The gospel shows us that heaven will be full of all kinds of people (I rejoice to see that day!).  When we see people thorough the gospel, this transforms how we see people for we don’t see a person by their skin color or their creed or their language but we see them as people made in the image of Almighty God.

Why Do Homosexuals Want To Be Married?

Why do homosexuals want same-sex “marriage” to be legal?  Most homosexuals have been content to just live out their lives without marriage.  One poll I read from said that less than 5% of homosexuals ever get “married” to their same-sex partner.  Most are content to abide in their relationships while recognizing that, in reality, only a man and a woman can legally get married.  There is no such thing as marriage “equality” and people know this.

That has now all changed.  Our culture is quickly moving to make same-sex “marriage” a part of our society.  Those who oppose same-sex “marriage” are said to be bias, old fashioned, a bigot, a homophobe.  Everyone is being ordered to not just allow for same-sex “marriage” but the drum beat from the culture is that it is to be celebrated.  If someone declares they are a homosexual, we are not to merely remain silent on the issue but should rejoice in their lifestyle.

And that is the bottom line issue of same-sex “marriage.”  Our culture is seeking to redefine marriage in order to legitimize the sin of homosexuality.  Our culture wants to legitimize not just that sin but others as well including lying, greed, stealing, polygamy, adultery, incest, pride, and even pedophilia.  Nothing is out of the range of redefinition.

And why is this happening?  First, the Church has failed to preach the gospel.  The Church has been focused on numbers and the seeker movement has produced a church void of truth.  The teaching of the Bible has been replaced with pop psychology.  Theology has been replaced with “application” teaching and “cool and relevant” teaching.  Prayer has been replaced with programs.  Evangelism has been replaced with making the “unchurched” feel welcomed.  Words have replaced power.  As the Church has become lukewarm, lacking in the presence of God, and focused on numbers instead of faithfulness to God, the result has been churches full of people but lacking in true disciples.  False converts are everywhere!  This has caused the Church to not be able to address social ills and questions with the authority of the Word of God.  How can she when she has been playing harlotry with the world itself?

Secondly, the sins of homosexuality, adultery, lying, greed, etc. will not go away simply because society claims they are not sins.  The fact remains that the human conscience knows that these are sins.  Romans 1:18 says that people seek to suppress the truth because they love their unrighteousness.  When people reject God, God gives them over to their sins which includes the acceptance by culture of sin (Romans 1:28).  People love their sins whether it be sexual perversions or their greed or their false religions.  People know they are guilty before a holy God because there is enough of the Law of God in our society still to convict but the culture wants to suppress the truth and, in their minds, end their guilt they feel for their sins.  If the culture can remove Christianity, they feel that their sins will no longer convict them and they can live in complete wickedness without guilt.  This will never happen.

Thirdly, the Church has failed to preach faithfulness in biblical marriages.  Far too long we have tolerated unbiblical relationships to exist.  We must preach the truth of God’s Word about marriage.  God hates divorce (Malachi 2:16 NKJV).  God’s Word has presented us with biblical marriages and we must obey the texts (Ephesians 5:22-33).  True marriage pictures Christ and His Church.  We have tolerated marriages that are below God’s standard.  We must repent of this and pray for the Spirit to repair our marriages.  Homosexuals look at traditional marriages and they are able to show so many ungodly, unbiblical marriages.  Divorce among Christians is high (not as high as some would suggest) but we must preach against divorce and preach forgiveness, reconciliation, and the biblical roles of men and women in marriage.  I myself had to endure my own parents divorce and despite this happening when I was already an adult, it is not something I want to endure again.

The response from the Church must be the same as always: the preaching of the gospel.  Homosexuals, adulterers, liars, pedafiles, rapists, perverts, drunkards, the greedy, those in false religions, etc. all need the gospel.  Paul makes it clear that God is able to save such sinners in 1 Corinthians 6:9-11.  Sinners need the gospel!  Our culture is full of sin and thus now is the time for the Church to preach the gospel.  Paul wrote in Romans 5:20-21:

20 Now the law came in to increase the trespass, but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more, 21 so that, as sin reigned in death, grace also might reign through righteousness leading to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Notice that where sin increased, grace abounded all the more!  The gospel is the answer for our society.  Now is not the time for the Church to conform to the culture and simply allow for homosexuality to become normalized.  We must preach against all sins!  We must stand firm on the Word of God even if the culture rejects us (and they will for the sake of their sins).  The Bible is able to cut people to the heart (Hebrews 4:12-13) even if the culture rejects the Bible.  The Bible is a supernatural book written by the Spirit of God (2 Timothy 3:16-17) and therefore the Spirit is able to open sinners hearts to the Word of God as we are faithful to proclaim its truth.  Let us pray for sinners to hear the Word of God and be saved (2 Thessalonians 2:13-14).

Written by The Seeking Disciple

10/08/2014 at 9:48 AM

Why Jackie Robinson and Michael Sam Are Not The Same (And Never Will Be)

Jackie Robinson broke the color barrier of Major League baseball in 1947.  Robinson made baseball better because of it.  Robinson also was a star on and off the field even after his retirement from baseball.  His number “42” remains the only number to be retired by all MLB clubs to this day and I suspect it will forever be that way (though Hispanics want Roberto Clemente’s number retired in all clubs as well).

Today ESPN and others are pushing for Michael Sam to be hailed too for he is about to be the first openly homosexual player in NFL history.  We are being told over and over and over again how brave Sam is for doing what he is doing and how he is changing the game the way that Robinson changed baseball (and sports) for the better in 1947.  Sam is being compared to Robinson in every way.

But there are major differences between the two.

First, Robinson, before 1947, was banned from Major League baseball for one reason: his skin color.  This was nothing he could change.  Sadly, many Negro League players could have been MLB stars had they been given the right to just play baseball.  Great Negro League players such as Josh Gibson, Satchel Paige (when he was in his prime), and many others.  We also forget that Hank Aaron, Willie Mays, and many other black players started in the Negro Leagues because of racism.

Racism is profoundly different from homosexuality.  A man cannot change the color of his skin.  His skin is sacred because his skin color has been given to him by God.  Underneath, a black man is no different from a white man nor a white man different from an Asian man.  Our skin pigmentation might be different but inside, we are still humans.  A black man could marry an Asian woman and produce offspring that while mixed in their skin color, they would still be human.  Skin color then is precious before God.  Racism is the sin of thinking that one skin color is better than others.  We must remember God’s promise in Galatians 3:28, “There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you all one in Christ Jesus” (NIV).  This is not taking away our unique sex given to us by God nor our skin color nor our language, etc.  It is simply pointing out that in Christ Jesus, we are one.  God’s children are those who have been baptized into Christ (Galatians 3:26).  In reality, God sees people either as in His Son or outside of His Son (John 3:36; Colossians 1:13).  We are either sheep or goats (Matthew 25:31-46).

Jackie Robinson could never change his skin color.  But he could be a great baseball player.  And he was.  He won the 1947 National League Rookie of the Year and went on to lead the Dodgers to the 1947 World Series (which they lost).  He won the National League MVP award in 1949.  By the end of his career (10 years!), Robinson would retire with a .311 career average.  He hit 137 home runs and stole 197 bases.  His team was in the World Series 6 out of the 10 years he played and won the World Series in 1955 (by the way, Robinson’s Dodgers were 1-5 against the New York Yankees in all those World Series’).  Robinson was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1962.

Now Sam has yet to play a down in the NFL so it’s actually not fair to pit stats from Robinson against him and they do play two different sports but my point is that Robinson was proving something, he was showing the world that the color of a man’s skin has nothing to do with his talents.  Robinson was showing that a black man could play with the white players in the Majors.  His skin color had nothing to do with his greatness on the field.  Robinson was elected to the Hall of Fame for being a great baseball player first and foremost and not just for the fact that he was the first man of color to play in the Majors.  I suppose that would have been the case had he not had a great career but Robinson left no doubt about his talents.

On the other hand, Sam is being praised for being the first openly homosexual in the NFL.  Again, he has yet to play a down.  Most are picking him to be a mid round pick meaning that he still needs some work to become a great NFL player.  Perhaps he will be but perhaps he will not.  Yet sports writers are praising Sam as if he is Robinson, as if he has performed at the same level.  He has not.  Not yet.

Further, Robinson was a humble man.  When asked why he was trying to make it with the Dodgers, Robinson simply said, “I just want to play baseball.”  Robinson knew what was at stake but he also knew that baseball was meant to be colorblind.  After all, a box score doesn’t show a man’s color.  It only shows what he and his team did that day.  Robinson opened the door for other men of color from blacks to Hispanics to Japanese to become Major Leaguers.  He is right to be praised.

Sam has made one decision here.  He has announced he is a homosexual.  A position, by the way, that he could change (1 Corinthians 6:9-11).  Robinson never had that chance.  Sam has been praised for his sexual desire and lauded by ESPN as being so brave to go into the “manly” NFL as an openly homosexual player.  This is an issue of choice and not an issue of skin color.  To this day there is no proof that a person is born a homosexual.  It is a lifestyle choice.  It is a choice about sex.

Robinson (and others before him) were banned from baseball because of their skin color.  A fact they could not change nor needed to.  This was not a choice.  This was not a sin.  The sin was others racism toward them and not their own.

Sam has not been banned from the NFL.  In fact, the NFL nor any other professional clubs ban homosexuals or any other person from trying out for them.  They are concerned only with helping their teams win.  If you can make the team, you are in the NFL.  Homosexuality is not the same as the skin color ban of the former professional sports.  Not even close.  Jason Collins is still playing in the NBA as an openly homosexual player.

In closing, I wish Sam no ill will.  Perhaps he will make a great NFL player.  Perhaps not.  Either way, I don’t think this will be because of his homosexuality.  If Sam makes it in the NFL, it will because he played good football.  Meanwhile, Sam (who is black), will play next to all skin colors.  None of them will be banned from playing for their skin color.  Nor will Sam be banned from playing because of his sexual desires.  But Sam will play because of Jackie Robinson.  Had Robinson not done what he did in 1947, Sam would not be allowed to play in the NFL nor would he have played for Missouri in college.  He would be watching or playing in a Negro League because of his skin color.  Robinson changed that.

In the end, Sam will never be like Jackie Robinson.  Robinson’s skin color was obvious.  He represented a whole group of people who were banned from the Majors for one reason: racism.  Homosexuals are not the same.  There are black, white, Hispanic, Jewish, etc. homosexuals.  There are no people groups whom we can point to and say, “Homosexuals” like they could at Robinson.  Homosexuals are linked together by one prominent idea: a sexual preference.  Skin color is not even an issue.  These two men were completely different and represented totally different things.

Let us pray for Michael Sam.  He can be transformed by God’s grace and mercy.

Written by The Seeking Disciple

03/23/2014 at 7:00 PM

True Christians As The Majority

Many in the American Church are lamenting the fact that our nation is corrupt.  We are now a nation where abortion is rampant, where homosexuality is being encouraged and defended, where divorce is now up to 50% of all marriages, and where whatever sin you prefer, who are we to suggest that you are in sin?  The only absolutes I see in our culture is that one cannot be absolutely against what culture deems correct.  Whatever the culture likes, we are not to question.  The Christian idea that God hates sin or that He will judge sinners or that His wrath is against sin is not to be heard.  The only God of secular culture today is a tolerant god who judges none and allows sinning for all while loving all the same.

This thought got me to thinking though that the true Christian, the faithful disciple of Jesus who hates sin and loves righteousness (1 John 3:4-10) and who pursues holiness (Hebrews 12:14), has been a minority since the dawn of time.  The entire story of the Bible presents many who did love God and who feared Him and obeyed Him but the vast majority of people in the Bible did not love God nor pursue His will.  Even the nation of Israel shows a people who did not follow the Lord God but disobeyed Him as we see in Romans 9:30-33; 10:19-20; 11:7-10.  Paul the Apostle even wrote in 1 Corinthians 10:5, “Nevertheless, with most of them God was not pleased, for they were overthrown in the wilderness.”  

The fact is that true disciples of Jesus have always been a minority.  One could argue that at times a culture reflected more biblical worldview than at other times (this could be true of many Western nations such as Great Britain, France, Spain, Germany, Australia, South Africa, the United States, Canada) but true Christianity has always been a minority.  Those who preached repentance and holiness have always been a minority.  Those who preached turning away from sin (1 John 2:1-2) have always been a minority.  Those who lived faithful lives to Christ have always been few.  Those who labored in prayer and in the Word have been few.

Jesus tells us about how few those would be who faithful follow Christ as Lord in Luke 13:22-30.  Here we read:

22 He went on his way through towns and villages, teaching and journeying toward Jerusalem. 23 And someone said to him, “Lord, will those who are saved be few?” And he said to them, 24 “Strive to enter through the narrow door. For many, I tell you, will seek to enter and will not be able. 25 When once the master of the house has risen and shut the door, and you begin to stand outside and to knock at the door, saying, ‘Lord, open to us,’ then he will answer you, ‘I do not know where you come from.’ 26 Then you will begin to say, ‘We ate and drank in your presence, and you taught in our streets.’ 27 But he will say, ‘I tell you, I do not know where you come from. Depart from me, all you workers of evil!’ 28 In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth, when you see Abraham and Isaac and Jacob and all the prophets in the kingdom of God but you yourselves cast out. 29 And people will come from east and west, and from north and south, and recline at table in the kingdom of God. 30 And behold, some are last who will be first, and some are first who will be last.”

Notice that Jesus says that we are to strive to enter through the narrow door (v. 24).  The road of faithfulness to Christ contains few.

The fact is that people will always hate the truth of God (Romans 3:10-18).  The fact is that the faithful disciple of Jesus must make our aim to please God and not to “convert” culture.  Jesus alone saves sinners (John 14:6) and He alone will be exalted as we preach His saving gospel to the lost (Romans 10:14-17).  Our aim must be to glorify Jesus in all that we say or do (Colossians 3:17) through His grace (Titus 2:12).  Our aim must be holiness in the midst of a wicked world (1 Peter 1:15-16; 2:9-12).  In Revelation 17:14 we find those who are with Jesus and John writes that they are “called and chosen and faithful.”  I pray that I am those thing by God’s grace.  I want to faithful to Jesus always (2 Timothy 3:12).

As we look around and see our culture becoming wicked, let us bear in mind that people have always chosen to rebel against God (Romans 1:18-32).  Yet our goal should not change: we want to exalt Jesus.  We have His promises that the world would hate us (John 15:18-25).  We have the promise of 2 Peter 3.  We will one day be the majority (Revelation 21:7-8; 22:14-15) but this will come in God’s timing and by His power.

Written by The Seeking Disciple

08/15/2013 at 4:41 PM

Same-Sex “Marriage” and Religious Freedom

Here is a link to an excellent article written by Matthew Franck on same-sex “marriage” and religious freedom and how they will be at odds once the United States does recognize same-sex “marriage.”  When this does come to pass, the Church of Jesus Christ will have a decision to make.  Either it will stand for marriage as defined by the Bible or will allow culture (as wicked as it is) to define what is marriage.  The culture will not tolerate the Church standing against its views on marriage and will either persecute the Church to accept their views or will seek to make the Church pointless in society (which is what they want anyway).

I will repeat here again that the faithful expositor of God’s Word will be the one who will be persecuted the most along with faithful witnesses for Christ.  The expositor of the Word will have to teach that homosexuality is a sin because the Bible says that it is.  The faithful evangelist will suffer because they will proclaim that the sexually immoral will not inherit the kingdom of God and will suffer.

We must hide passages such as Matthew 5:10-12 and John 15:18-25 in our hearts because persecution is coming.

Written by The Seeking Disciple

06/19/2013 at 10:31 AM

The Secular God Does Not Save

I was amused when I heard a radio program that was debating the recent decision by the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) to allow homosexual boys to participate in the BSA while still banning openly gay men from being leaders in the BSA.  Some, including the LDS Church, agreed with the BSA move and welcomed boys struggling with same-sex attraction.  For others, conservative Boy Scout chapters, this move violates what they believe the BSA should stand for and that is the boys should be “morally upright.”  They believe that homosexuality is hardly “morally upright.”  The LDS Church, however, responded saying that all boys should be welcomed to participate in BSA but should be taught to not act on their sinful desires for same-sex sex.

What I find humorous is that people see the “god” of the BSA as the God of Christianity.  While I would not deny that the BSA have based much of their views on God or people or morality upon the Christian concept of God, they are not one and the same.  Simply because the United States has “God” on their money or that the BSA has “God” in their bylaws does nothing to affirm the true God of the Bible.  Again, I note that the BSA has secular packs, LDS packs, Methodist packs, and many other charter groups.  All of them affirm “God” in their bylaws.  The Boy Scouts oath is:

On my honor I will do my best
To do my duty to God and my country
and to obey the Scout Law;
To help other people at all times;
To keep myself physically strong,
mentally awake, and morally straight.

While God is mentioned, who is this God?  In the BSA that god could be the god of Mormonism or the god of this group or that.  God is not defined.

The reality is that the secular god cannot save.  The secular god of the Boy Scouts or the god of a business is not always the God of the Bible and often God is left undefined.  The God of Scripture is not to be added to among our other pursuits.  The God of Scripture demands that we repent and make Him our lives (Luke 14:25-35).  The God of Scripture demands that we live lives of holiness and that we hate what He hates and we love what He loves.  The God of the Bible does not allow us to follow the dictates of the culture.  The God of the Bible demands total worship and adoration.  Our entire being is to be consumed by Him (Romans 12:1-2).  The God of the Bible is to be our highest passion and desire (Philippians 3:12-14).

My point in all of this is that the god of the Boy Scouts is not defined.  The god of the BSA is the same secular god who is on our money.  He is given some acknowledgement but He is not viewed as the sovereign God of the Bible who rules and reigns and who demands repentance.  We should be shocked to see the BSA opening themselves to the sins of our culture.  Their god cannot save.  Their god is their own god that they created.  The God of the Bible, however, does not change (Malachi 3:6).  What God demanded of His people 2000 years ago, He still demands today.  Let us then fear Him and stand in awe of the one true and living God of the Bible.

Written by The Seeking Disciple

05/27/2013 at 10:51 AM

Sex After Christianity

Here is an excellent article on what will come next following the American culture adopting same-sex “marriage” as normal.  The Church is facing a time when we need to cry out to God for revival and to be faithful in preaching the gospel (Acts 1:8).  This alone can transform our nation.

You can find the article here.

Written by The Seeking Disciple

04/12/2013 at 9:39 AM

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