Finally, the eyes of the slumbering giant in America are beginning to flicker open. The American church has been in a deep sleep for decades; possibly even as long as a century. Evolution, pluralism, progressivism, abortion, and pornography have all come and established themselves in the culture with barely a collective stir from the people of God.
Education, open-mindedness, tolerance, love, and acceptance have long been used as excuses by Christians to keep their eyes closed and their mouths shut to the infusion and acceptance of sin in the culture. “Maybe God used evolution as His mechanism of Creation,” “maybe it’s a little much to say that Jesus is the only way of salvation,” “maybe the Church should show it’s openness to changing cultural mores as a means of reaching people,” and “maybe God has grown up and changed His views on sexual practice” are just a few of the ways Christians have for decades justified their ongoing slumber.
After all, we’ve had more important matters to attend to than gearing up for some silly culture war. Parking lots needed paving, carpet needed updating, relocations, grounds crews, staff salaries, and audio/video equipment had to be installed. The American church had too much going on to take notice that the Founders’ faith was being surreptitiously eradicated from American history. It was too zoned in to taking the gospel halfway around the world than seeing the need for it in our own backyard. Slowly but surely we allowed the gospel message to be whittled down to “God’s will is for everyone to be meek and accepting.” That was easy to oblige.
But this homosexual marriage thing…may have finally jarred a fair percentage of us awake. The Kleins in Oregon who politely declined to participate in a homosexual marriage by baking a cake and have been fined $135,000 and placed under a gag order is taking the blinders off some in church. The recent Supreme Court decision finding a fundamental and constitutional right for homosexual marriage is so blatantly ridiculous that finally some of our Christian kindred are wiping away the sleep from their eyes asking “What’s happened?” The gloves are coming off in the public sphere as writers like Sally Kohn, writing for The Daily Beast have come out and said for all to read “Will anti-gay Christians be politically and socially ostracized? I sure hope so.”
Despite the fact large numbers in the Christian Church in America seem blissfully excited about our culture’s descent into the abyss of immorality, I believe an equally large number of those who go to church are finally waking up to where all this is going. Both testaments are absolutely clear and unequivocal in their rejection of homosexuality as anything but an affront to the holiness of God. No amount of Scripture twisting, theological rationalization, or abuse of the word “love” is successfully legitimizing this sin in many of the faithful’s hearts or eyes. And the SCOTUS decision shows just how far up the ladder political correctness has ascended. Unfortunately, (or maybe fortunately) shoving this blatant sexual sin down the throats of the sleeping giant has been too much.
Consequently, the question of the hour from those who are just now waking up to the culture war is “what can we do?”
Many of the long term faithful culture warriors are answering that question with great relief (that church people are finally asking the question) and specificity. But I believe many of them are overlooking something that, while obvious to them, is not so evident to those just waking from the slumber of apathy.
The first and best thing to do for those who are finally asking how to engage the enemy in the culture war is to practice…talking openly about it. That may not seem like much but I can assure you that it is. If you have been told year after year that politics and church don’t mix, or that speaking openly in church about sex is wrong, or that the Constitution expressly forbids any kind of interaction between church and state, or simply that salvation is the only issue that the church should even attempt to bring to the public sphere…then before you grab the shield of faith and the sword of the Spirit on your way to the battle you might want to just practice talking openly about the nature of sin in general and the sinfulness of homosexuality in particular.
Psalm 107:2 says, “Let the redeemed of the Lord say so, whom he has redeemed from trouble…” That’s not just an opaque platitude from someone writing a song. Consider the following:
- On your walls, O Jerusalem, I have set watchmen; all the day and all the night they shall never be silent. (Isaiah 62:6)
- If I say, “I will not mention him, or speak any more in his name,” there is in my heart as it were a burning fire shut up in my bones, and I am weary with holding it in, and I cannot. (Jeremiah 20:9)
- Then those who feared the Lord spoke with one another. The Lord paid attention and heard them…(Malachi 3:16)
- Go home to your friends and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how he has had mercy on you. (Mark 5:19)
- Since we have the same spirit of faith according to what has been written, “I believed, and so I spoke,” we also believe, and so we also speak.” (2 Corinthians 4:13)
- Do not be ashamed of the testimony about our Lord…(2 Timothy 1:8)
We’ve got to start talking about the issues in our churches! Regularly and openly. And because our kids are tuned in to social media and things like homosexual marriage are all over that we simply must have Sunday School teachers and curriculum that address this and other issues from a biblical perspective. Because we have failed to so for so long we now have grown adults in church who have bought hook, line, and sinker into the argument that God made people homosexual.
For goodness sake, has there not been anyone teaching Genesis 3? “Did God actually say…?” said the serpent to Eve. People have grown up in the American Church and have no idea that that ploy is still being used against them by the same slick shyster.
The preachers have got to lead in this. How about a sermon on John 3:16 that says something to the effect of “God so loved the world that He sent His onlybegotten Son to die on a Cross for your sin(s). Love cannot therefore mean that God is accepting of anything and everyone because if God accepted everyone as they are then sending Christ to the Cross was unnecessary!”
It’s time to start talking about politics in church. It’s time to start talking about sex in church. It’s time to start talking about biblical marriage in church. Once we get in the habit of speaking freely about issues on Sundays we will be much more ready and effective to begin taking the actions that our generation’s culture warriors are giving us.
Cultural acceptance and governmental endorsement of homosexual marriage may just have done what none of the other “progressive” issues has been able to do: awaken the giant. Now that the sleeping giant is awakening…what will it say?