I am always honored when my friend Lars Larson submits an article for post here at COT. He is a faithful man of God, an excellent church historian, and expositor of God's Word. It is a joy to welcome this latest installment from him and I highly commend it to you.
This article is a good example of how thoughtful Christians should engage and converse with our postmodern culture. It is biblically without compromise, culturally applicable, straightforward, and practical. His words call for a decisive response and seeks no neutrality of ideals.
May his words encourage and strengthen you further in your service to the Lord Jesus Christ.
Yours for the Master's use,
2 Cor. 4:5-7
A milestone was passed recently, which has accelerated our society on its downward path of moral decadence and tyranny. The state legislature forbid the citizens of Massachusetts to vote on the most significant moral and cultural issue facing our society—should the institution of marriage be redefined. Our “leaders”, elected to secure and preserve our rights, have acted on behalf of a vocal, affluent, and influential few. Claiming to defend the right of a minority, they robbed the right to vote to the majority. They have violated the foundational principle of democracy--society governed by the majority of voters. The actions of the legislature are tyrannical. The legislature does not believe that a society has the right to govern itself in all matters. They must use judicial and legislative means to deny citizens their influence to affect society and to impose on them the values of others. They have reshaped our laws and culture into that which we are opposed, into that which we consider, that our grandparents and their parents before us would have considered, evil, immoral, and degenerate. And we are now on a course that will continue to accelerate away from that we have known, now that the voters have been rendered impotent to affect the course of their society.
I understand why they acted in this way. They were afraid of the citizens’ vote if they were permitted to govern themselves. They know that many of us believe that the institution of marriage is not just a political and social institution, but a religious one. To us it is sacrilegious to redefine marriage. We have the conviction that God established the institution of marriage. We look to the Lord Jesus when He taught on the nature and the permanence of marriage between a man and a woman:
Have you not read that He who made them at the beginning “made them male and female,” and He said, “For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh”? So then, they are no longer two but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let not man separate. (Matt. 19:14ff)Although Massachusetts’ residents have been subjected to propaganda and policies that promote sexual license in their schools, the media, in the “entertainment” industry, and by the courts, Christians who believe the Bible have retained a traditional view of marriage and homosexual behavior. We continue to believe that sexual relations outside of marriage, whether heterosexual or homosexual, are immoral acts which God will judge. “Fornicators and adulterers God will judge” (Heb. 13:4). Granted, people have always done these things in private, but a threshold is crossed when society approves of them (cf. Romans 1). Homosexual behavior is sin; therefore, homosexual marriage sanctioned by society is sin and will result in the forfeiture of God’s blessing and the certainty of incurring His wrath. God has established clearly His law upon which He judges people:
You shall not lie with a male as with a woman. It is an abomination. Nor shall you mate with any animal, to defile yourself with it. Nor shall any woman stand before an animal to mate with it. It is perversion. Do not defile yourselves with any of these things; for by all these the nations are defiled, which I am casting out before you… You shall not commit any of these abominations, either any of your own nation or any stranger who dwells among you …, lest the land vomit you out also when you defile it, as it vomited out the nations that were before you. (Lev. 24:18-21ff)God said that He would judge His people Israel as He had done the other nations for these sins. God’s ways among nations are the same today as they were when the above words were penned, for God does not change.
Do not think that we desire to demean or bring harm to those who are involved in the sins mentioned above. We desire God’s richest blessing upon them. But we are convinced this will not occur until they first repent of their sin and turn in faith to Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. Ours is not a message of bigotry and advocacy for the ruin of people, for we desire their salvation. The Bible teaches us that we should regard and treat all persons with respect and dignity because they have been made in the image of God. But God does not want us to dignify every moral action or choice that people make. The heart of the Christian message is that we are all sinners, failing to reflect the glory of God’s image in our lives, but that God through His Son redeems us from sin. Christians will continue to believe and live knowing that God created sexual relations to be the beautiful and righteous expression of love between a husband and wife. They will continue to believe and teach that all sexual activity outside of marriage is sin from which people should turn and seek forgiveness and new life through Jesus Christ. These values will not change for us. We will continue to proclaim them. I will not be surprised, however, when those in authority attempt to use their power to silence us.
That is what tyrants do.