Tag Archives: same sex marriage

Jesus was Intolerant

“The only modern virtue is complete tolerance” we are told. We hear constantly today about the wonderful virtue of tolerance and how that America is the greatest nation on earth because of our tolerance. That sounds noble, yet the modern definition has become “Non-judgmental acceptance of any and all other viewpoints as equally valid to your own viewpoint.” Such a view equates tolerance with compromise and acceptance of sin. Thus, in today’s society, tolerance is seen as being of uttermost importance. The concept appears to be that since God is love and He loves everyone, He must want people to accept all religions and behavior. And so, when religion is being discussed and doctrines and moral absolutes are under discussion, the justification for false doctrine and immoral conduct is the emphasis on God’s love. In our day, it is absolutely intolerant for a person to criticize the religion of others, unless, of course it is Christianity that is being criticized. When one does so, they are criticized as being unloving, intolerant, and hateful. We are asked: “Why are Christians so intolerant? Wasn’t Jesus all accepting?”

The truth is that one way isn’t as good as another. Homosexuality is wrong and should be condemned. Divorcing and remarrying without scriptural cause is not just as good as the opposite. Islam isn’t “another great religion” that can stand hand in hand with Christianity. Immorality is not “just an alternative viewpoint.” All entertainment is not created equal.

Part of the definition of “intolerance” is “unwilling to grant equal freedom of expression especially in religious matters.” It is quite remarkable that those who say Christians are intolerant and should not express their religious beliefs are the ones who actually are intolerant. Tolerance is not about “accepting” everyone else’s beliefs, but merely being willing to listen to those beliefs. Thus, tolerance does not mean that we automatically accept everyone else’s beliefs as being true. Contrary to popular beliefs, religions do not teach the same things, and so, they can’t all be true. Belief, in and of itself does not make that belief true! Ravi Zacharias said: “Truth cannot be sacrificed at the altar of pretended tolerance. Real tolerance is deference to all ideas, not indifference to the truth!”

Have you noticed that the liberal media and religionists can loudly proclaim that everyone has the right to think how they want, but when Christians make exclusive claims about God, Jesus, and the Bible, they are loudly discounted and labeled as unenlightened and intolerant, and they do everything they can to silence them. Yet the “enlightened” ones can shout their learned opinions   from the housetop and expect us to believe everything they say without question, and to extol their magnificence.

Hollywood, TV’s talking heads on their talk shows, spew what they believe about the social matters in society all over the place and people are expected to soak it all up like it is gospel. Yet, when a Christian who believes the Bible and stands firmly for the gospel speaks out about matters like alternate life styles, same-sex marriage, transgenderism, abortion, cohabitation, and marriage, divorce, and remarriage, what happens? They are told to be quiet or else they will have their arguments ridiculed and drowned out by the talking heads, cultural philosophers, or other members of the cultural elite. The growing voice in our secular, pluralistic society says: “How can anybody believe such a thing as the Bible is the Word of God and Jesus is the only Savior and one religion is not as good as another?”

Can’t you see that this is the reason that the language of tolerance isn’t really tolerant? Many who advocate for tolerance believe they are the gatekeepers if truth, and only they can decide who is tolerant and who is intolerant. Therefore, whenever anyone says anything they deem  intolerant, or if a Christian speaks or writes about same-sex marriage or other like issues, they are shouted down, told they are wrong, and immediately labeled a “bigot,” “misguided,” or any number of unsavory labels.

Most of what passes for tolerance today is intellectual cowardice, a fear of intelligent engagement. Those who cry “intolerant” are unwilling to be challenged by other views, to grapple with contrary opinions, or even to consider them. It is easier to hurl an insult, call one an “intolerant bigot,” than to confront the idea and either refute it or to be changed by it. Thus, today, “tolerance” has become “intolerance!”

Tolerance may do well unless people are in danger! Your child may believe it is safe to run across the road, but I’m sure you are intolerant of that belief and behavior. So, instead, because you love him/her, you shout “STOP” and grab him/her. Your friend may believe that alcohol doesn’t affect his/her driving ability, but you are intolerant to that kind of thinking. So, instead, because you love him/her you take his/her car keys and drive him/her home yourself.

Is The Lord Intolerant?

We need to understand that the Scriptures teach that God is intolerant of certain things, but that doesn’t mitigate against His love!  In fact, we learn from 1 John 4: 8 that “God is love.”  He has demonstrated His love for us, that, even while we were sinners, He sent His Son to die for us (Rom 5: 8).  Without His grace and mercy, no one could expect to have eternal life.  Titus 2: 11-12 says: “For the grace of God that brings salvation hath appeared to all men, teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world.”  Again, we read in Titus 3: 3-6: “For we ourselves were also once foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving various lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful and hating one another. But when the kindness (goodness) and the love of God our Savior toward man appeared, not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy, He saved us through the washing of regeneration and the renewing of the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out on us abundantly, through Jesus Christ our Savior, that having been justified by His grace we should become heirs according to the hope of eternal life.”

The Lord knows that certain views, beliefs, and behaviors are dangerous, hurtful, and sinful, to those who practice them, and that they lead to spiritual death, judgement, and eternal ruin.  If he, like a lot of people, had simply tolerated all of these different views and behaviors, He’d have smiled, waved, done nothing, and moved on.  But instead, Jesus loves people (their souls) too much to just ignore and be silent, knowing that people are heading for ruin if they do not wake up.

Thus, Jesus was intolerant of certain views, beliefs, and behaviors, but at the same time He demonstrated how much He loved people whose beliefs and behaviors differed radically from His own, by dying on the cruel cross for them!  To the Corinthians Paul wrote: “For the love of Christ compels us, because we judge thus,: that if One died for all, then all died; and He died for all, that those who live should live no longer for themselves, but for Him who died for them, and rose again” (2 Cor 5: 14-15).  He further said: “For you know the grace of Our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that you though His poverty might become rich” (2 Cor 8: 9).  Thus, even though there are things that the Lord, in His holiness, cannot tolerate, don’t ever doubt His love for sinful man.

I’m sure that Jesus would be described as one of the most intolerant people to have ever lived.  Although Jesus was loving and associated with all kinds of people, He was not tolerant of their sinful lifestyles. He confronted immoral behavior directly, and even had the audacity to tell people to stop participating in their sinful behavior; “Go and sin no more from now on” (John 8: 11).  He was intolerant of false teachers and the false doctrines they taught (Matt 7: 15, 21-23).  He was intolerant of the “very religious” Scribes and Pharisees and rebuked them strongly in Matthew 23.  He was intolerant of those who set aside God’s law to follow human tradition (Matt 15: 3-9).  He was intolerant of imposters claiming to be Christ (Matt 24: 24), and He told the Sadducees that they were “mistaken, not knowing the Scriptures nor the power of God” (Matt 22: 29).  He was intolerant of those money changers in the temple and drove them out (Matt 21, Mk 11; Luke 19; John 2).  He was intolerant of anyone who claimed to offer access to the Father other than through Him (John 14: 6).

We see then, that Jesus was intolerant and also confrontational.  He was intolerant of sin, religious hypocrisy, those who made sinful gains in the name of religion, religious error, and disobedience.  But we also see that the same Jesus who is intolerant of sin and disobedience still loves sinful people (Rom 5:8).  He is “longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance” (2 Pet 3: 9).  He “desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth” (1 Tim 2: 4).  In John 14:21, we read: “He who has my commandments and keeps them, it is he who loves Me.  And he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and manifest Myself to him.”

If we are to be servants of God, we need to have the same viewpoint of sin.  We must understand that it is possible to disagree with a person and still love them.  We might disagree with our own children and still deeply love them.

Being intolerant of a person’s sinful behaviors is not the same thing as hating them.

By Dennis Abernathy

The Truth About The SCOTUS Ruling

Psalm 11:1-7

The Supreme Court ruling on marriage will both drive our nation further from God and place us in conflict with our government.  Don’t Despair!  We have an anchor in God and His word.   We don’t need the nation, we need deeper faith.  This world has never been our true home.  Let’s notice some basic truths that will equip us to discuss these matters with people.

I.    LOVE: CONDITIONAL / UNCONDITIONAL

A.    God is love (1 John 4:8)
B.    God’s love is NOT unconditional acceptance (1 Cor 13:4-7; John 15:10; 1 John 3:24)
C.    God’s unconditional love sent Jesus (John 3:16; Rom 5:8)
1.    Conditions for access to His love (Acts 17:30-31; Rom 6:3-4; 10:9-10)
2.    Conditions to remain in His love (1 John 1:7-9; Jude 1:21; Rom 6:1-2; Heb 6:4-6)

II.    MARRIAGE: DESCRIPTION / PURPOSE

A.    Marriage prioritized:
1.    God – man – work – help – woman (Gen 2:18-25; Matt 19:3-9; Eph 5:22-33)
2.    Intimacy
3.    Reproduction

III.    RELATIONSHIPS: SAME GENDER / SIN

A.    Abomination: abhorrent or repugnant to God (Lev 18:22)
B.    Condemned whole cities to destruction (Gen 19:1-11; Jude 1:7)
C.    Impurity, dishonored, degrading, indecent, due penalty  (Rom 1:24-27)
D.    Will not inherit the kingdom of God (1 Cor 6:9-10)
E.    Contrary to sound doctrine according to the gospel (1 Tim 1:9-11)
F.    Ungodly lifestyle (2 Peter 2:6)

God’s love is constant (Rom 3:24-26; Heb 2:17; 1 John 2:2; 4:10)
God’s patience grants repentance (2 Pet 3:9)
Speak the truth in love (Eph 4:15)
ALL sin is unacceptable to God (Rom 3:23; 6:23)
Everyone will be judged by Christ (2 Cor 5:10)
Repentance is necessary to salvation from sin (2 Cor 7:10)

“Be Prepared”

Several hours have passed since the Supreme Court of the United States announced its 5-4 majority decision declaring that homosexual marriage is a right guaranteed by the Constitution.  While hardly surprising, the decision is distressing to me, as well as to millions of other people who accept the Bible as the inspired word of God, and who, therefore, uphold marriage as God designed it (one man, one woman, for life – see Genesis 1).

What, then, are Christians to do?

First, do not panic!  Marriage is still what God said it is.  Grand and august as the SUPREME COURT is, there is yet a higher court.  While states may be required to issue “marriage” licenses to same-sex couples, God certainly is not required to accept what any human court decides (nor is His people).

Second, remember to respect and pray for all of the “powers that be” (i.e. civil government officials, see Romans 13:1-7 and 1 Timothy 2:1-3).  In this country, we are blessed with the right to disagree with our governing officials, and to express that disagreement plainly.  Constitutionally, we have the right to be rude and vindictive about it; but Biblically, we have no such right.  Be Biblical; be respectful; be calm.  And, above all, pray!

Third, get ready for more!  The same hopelessly twisted reasoning that gave us same-sex “marriage” will also justify polygamy/polyandry (multiple wives/multiple husbands) and, eventually, group marriages.  No doubt some will say, “You’re just being an alarmist!  Those things will never happen!”  Likewise, when the SUPREME COURT legalized abortion-on-demand, opponents warned that abortion would be used as a method of birth control, and that babies would be aborted because they were the “wrong” sex.  The pro-abortionists assured us that such atrocious things would never occur and that the pro-lifers were merely alarmists.  The sad fact today is that sex-selection abortions are routine, and abortion is commonly used as a method of birth control.  Alarmists?  Hardly!  It is only a matter of time.

Fourth, be certain that you do not treat the Bible in the same perverse manner that the majority of the SUPREME COURT treated the Constitution.  While the Bible and the Constitution are not perfectly parallel, the fact remains that the same “living document” philosophy that has given us abortion on demand and homosexual “marriage” is also disastrous when applied to the word of God.  The Court majority claimed that the Constitution’s “due process” clause prohibits states from denying same-sex couples the “right” to marry.  We would observe that the writers of that document obviously were unaware of this, since all homosexual behavior (not just marriage) was illegal at that time and, in many cases, was a capital crime.  How amazing (unlikely), that the very people who wrote the Constitution didn’t understand what it says!  But times have changed, say the “living document” advocates, so the meaning of the Constitution must change with the times.  In short, the Constitution now means whatever five justices think it ought to mean!

Tragically, the Bible has fallen victim to the same abuse.  Whether it is worship, gender roles, marriage/divorce/remarriage, homosexuality, or some other subject, we can know what the word of God teaches.  But, we are told, that was then!  This is now!  The church must change with the times!  The “original intent” of the authors is irrelevant.  Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, Peter, Paul, James, and Jude wrote all those things, but we’re so much more enlightened now, nearly 2000 years later!  We must re-interpret Scripture in light of modern society.  Thus the Bible “means” whatever any given group of people thinks it ought to mean.

Fifth, follow the old adage, “hate the sin, love the sinner.”  That’s what God does, and that’s what we must do.  Our opposition to all sin must follow this course (not just sexual immorality in general, not just homosexual behavior, and not just same-sex “marriage” in particular).  The world routinely (and falsely) accuses Christians of being haters; by our Christ-like love for all sinners, let us demonstrate that this accusation is bogus.  That doesn’t mean we remain silent about sin.  But it does mean that everything we say or do is with a view toward redemption.

Finally, be prepared to suffer.  Already businesses are being persecuted if they do not agree to participate in same-sex “weddings.”  Though we have assurances that religious groups and ministers will not be forced to officiate at such events, these promises are dubious at best.  Church-related institutions (e.g. Christian Universities, etc.) may well be the first to be forced to hire and extend benefits to same-sex couples.  Refusal to do so could result in severe economic repercussions, or even arrest.  Are we prepared to suffer the consequences of obeying God rather than men? (Acts 5:29)

— Joe Slater in Brotherhoodnews.com

Imposing On Marriage. — Connecting Peter’s Invitations. — It Takes Help To Misunderstand The Word Of God. — Heaven Teaches the Worship of God

Imposing On Marriage

By Boyd Jennings

 Marriage is one of three relationships God created for the betterment of mankind: Home (Gen 2:18), Government (Rom 13:1-7), Church (1 Cor 12:12-31). When, in any of these relationships, God’s wisdom is not respected, the result is harmful to those involved. What follows are three contemporary challenges or impositions to the divine relationship of marriage.

Continue reading Imposing On Marriage. — Connecting Peter’s Invitations. — It Takes Help To Misunderstand The Word Of God. — Heaven Teaches the Worship of God