The Bible makes a claim that it tells the absolute truth. This, regardless of your faith, is a bold claim. In my own life, I’ve made the choice to believe it as such. I find its truths, lessons, and revelation to be the best answers to all life’s questions.
Christians, like me, profess to believe this Bible, though to varying degrees. Some would say it’s the absolute truth from cover to cover. Others might say surely the God of the Old Testament was different (and much meaner) than the God of the New Testament, so I will only believe what’s in the New. Still others may pick and choose across all the books, grabbing out what suits them at that particular moment and only shining light on portions of Scripture.
And it is here that we come to a specific problem amongst Christians at the moment. It is this: one might be hard pressed to find any real difference between the “good deeds” of a Christian and a non-Christian.
Christians have fallen into the trap Francis Schaeffer warned about in his poignant book, Escape from Reason, where
“...what really forms the ‘Christ-like’ act today is simply what the consensus of the church or the consensus of society makes up its mind is desirable at that particular moment.”
Take gay marriage for example. Nothing is as hotly debated amongst Americans, even American Christians, today. What began as the march toward universal acceptance of people’s actions and choices has culminated in the movement to affirm the right of two men or two women to be married. Unfortunately, this movement has been dosing out the very thing it prescribes to take on — judgementalism.
So we have gay rights activists pushing to have gay marriage affirmed as the same union (legally) as a man and woman. This is a logical next step in the progression taking place.
What is illogical is the fact that Christians are no different on the issue. Sure, there are some who, just like some non-Christians, want to uphold the traditional view of marriage as being between a man and woman. Still there are Christians, even inside the church, who seek to affirm the unions of homosexual couples.
Here is the problem: when Christians neglect the unchanging truths of the Bible, they cease to proclaim Christianity at all.
Many Christians have made the intellectual leap to justify gay marriage with the best of intentions, namely saving those whom they seek to affirm. How can affirming someone’s decision when it is not in their best interest be considered loving? If you knew they would fall off a cliff after running too far, would you not tell them to stop, even if they insisted on going further?
Again, Schaeffer’s words seem prophetic:
“...there are evangelical Christians today who, in all sincerity, are concerned with their lack of communication, but in order to bridge the gap they are tending to change what must remain unchangeable.”
The Bible is full of truths which cannot be altered and which call for all Christians to be united behind. There can be honest discussion about the “non-essentials,” but this is not one of them.
The Bible is not unclear about the fact that homosexuality is a sin. Leviticus 18:22 says, “Do not practice homosexuality, having sex with another man as with a woman. It is a detestable sin.” There is nothing left open to interpretation here.
If Christians stop proclaiming the truth, they offer no better insight than the self-help gurus on the shelves of the local Barnes & Noble. The people they are trying to reach will only be driven further away when they see through the holes in the Christian “system.” Only unchanging Truth has the ability to change the hearts and minds of men.
Grayson Pope is a Christ-follower, husband, and father, right in the middle of his story. But mostly he's just a parched soul in search of God's Living Water. You can read more from Grayson here.