[The following is written as a guest post by an Evangelical Pastor of an 800 member congregation in Bucks County Pennsylvania. Pastor Doug Dwyer has reached out to me on various posts in which he found common ground and displayed what I consider to be true Christianity. Though I’ve never met him in person, I consider him a friend. I’m sure he’d be happy to respond to your comments below.]
Living In A Post Christian World
Several months ago I attended a conference in North Carolina entitled Living in a Post Christian World. The speaker commented on the fact that we have seen changes in our society at a speed that is breath taking. In so many ways moral conservatives feel like Alice and the looking glass where up is down and right is wrong. Our children will never know the world we knew. Consider our society’s changing attitude toward marriage. In 1993 not one nation on the planet sanctioned same sex marriage-not one!
In May 2015 once morally conservative Ireland legalized same sex marriage and by a healthy percentage. In our own country most experts believe the Supreme Court will rule on the legality of same sex marriage throughout the country in a way favored by its supporters. The shift in public opinion has made it challenging for those of us who hold to moral standards taught in Scripture. When an Oregon bakery owned by Aaron and Melissa Klein politely refused to bake a wedding cake for a lesbian couple because of their Christian faith the Klein’s began receiving numerous hate-filled emails as well as mounting legal bills. The Lesbian couple filed suit against the Klein’s for just under 100 aspects of suffering in order to receive damages including “high blood pressure,” “distrust of men” and “mental rape.” When concerned family and friends set up a Go Fund Me account to help the Klein’s cover some of their legal fees-Go Fund Me shut it down. Other businesses around the country are facing similar challenges and the courts are almost always unsympathetic towards moral conservatives.
The Boy Scouts of America, the largest private youth organization in the United States prohibited atheists, agnostics and until January 2014 “known or avowed homosexuals” from membership in its scouting programs. In May of 2015 BSA President Gary Gates told the national meeting of the BSA that he believed the current policy of excluding openly gay adults as “unsustainable” and should be changed as soon as October of this year. To say that churches who hold BSA charters are now caught in a quandary is an understatement!
However there is an even deeper issue for those of us who believe in God and moral truth-in a society gone bad. The churches of America are next on the chopping block.
When she was Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton made a strong plea for gay rights when speaking at a UN meeting in Geneva, Switzerland. As a presidential candidate her words are chilling:
“Religious beliefs are standing in the way of protecting the rights of LGBT people.”
What restrictive policy could “President” Hillary Clinton seek to enact upon the churches of this nation. What happens if our doctrines and convictions are deemed “intolerant” “hateful” “unloving” by a society far removed from the Judeo-Christian values that once strengthened and nourished our country?
No wonder Evolutionary Biologist Richard Dawkins recently said that “children need to be protected from the religion of their parents” and likens religious upbringing to a form of child abuse. For morally conservative people of faith our views may even preclude us from holding jobs and getting promotions. Those outside the moral revolution do not score high in terms of Fortune 500 companies and their commitment to diversity.
How does an LDS or Evangelical respond to “Gay Pride Month” at their company? Simply “getting along” with everyone may not satisfy our culture’s insistence that we also celebrate. According to Liberal Theologian Theo Hobson three events must take place in a culture for a moral revolution to take place:
“That which was condemned is now celebrated; that which was celebrated is now condemned and those who will not celebrate are to be condemned.”
It is pretty clear that all three have taken place and the last one is sobering for us. I take comfort in 1 Peter 1:1-5 where we are reminded that we are strangers and sojourners in this world and our hope is a living one and is imperishable. We may be shocked at the decline and confusion we see in our culture but God is not and no matter how things may seem He is in control.