Thursday, April 28, 2016

Take a Stand on Key Issues: Addiction, Abortion, & Marriage

The silence of the church on key issues of our day is deafening.  By remaining silent on these issues, for fear of controversy, the church unilaterally makes itself irrelevant.  When it's just a social club, or even a Christian fellowship of worship, well... something very important is missing.  What's missing is true cultural engagement.  The church has the power to be a voice on key issues like abortion, religious liberty, and human trafficking.  Let's make sure we do so.  

These are not easy topics to discuss.  But when we do discuss them, ears perk up.  The most valiant churches of the past took on cultural issues.  Think of William and Catherine Booth of the Salvation Army.  They challenged the depraved culture of "darkest England."  They took the Christian message to the streets.  This very much offended the high society churches of that time.  In fact Salvation Army parades, open air meetings, and bands would be routinely attacked and pelted with rocks.  Why? They were stepping out of the mold.  I imagine to talk of the whoring, or the brothels, or the alcohol abuse of that society was quite taboo.  Most churches I'm sure didn't discuss such things.  They were afraid of losing money or becoming overly controversial.  The Salvation Army protested, they went out into the streets, they went to the poor and wretched those who society carefully ignored.  And they transformed the culture of England.  

Think of William Wilberforce's stand against slavery in England.  Think of the hundreds of thousands of Christian citizens who took a stand against slavery in America.  It would've been much easier to carefully ignore the topic, for fear of losing church members who owned slaves.  But instead they took a stand.  They formed abolitionist societies.  

Today there is a deafening silence, especially in the few dozen megachurches in our society that tend to stand in the limelight.  Lord help us!  They are so often silent on the following topics: abortion, homosexuality, religious liberty, human trafficking, drug addiction, pornography, and political corruption.  Why?  Why do these megachurches refuse to take on abortion or homosexuality?  Because those issues are "controversial" and "divisive."  They know they'd take a pounding from the mainstream media.  They know they might lose donations.  But these issues are at the core of our societal debate.  To ignore them is to render ourselves irrelevant pukes whose religion is a farce.  A religion to be practiced inside the walls of the building on Sunday, but impractical and unapplicable to life in the real world.  Is that really what our faith is?  Of course not.  

We as the body of Christ must find our voice on these issues.  We must find our solid rock positions, based on the scriptures, and stick to them.  That's what it means to be a Christian.  We're called to take a stand.  We're called to know the truth, and put it into practice.

Let's make sure though, that we don't end up taking knee jerk positions on these topics.  It's very easy to say to any one of these problems "government needs to fix it."  That is the knee jerk response.  We need to funnel tax payer dollars, or we need to enforce new laws.  But that doesn't work.  So let's think outside the box on solutions to these issues.

1. Drug Addiction - Why the silence on drug addiction?  Who could say!  Maybe the church just doesn't understand this issue.  Drug addiction is becoming an epidemic.  Personally in Wisconsin and Michigan we've seen communities where ten years ago the only problems were alcohol, cigarettes, and marijuana.  Today those same communities have methamphetamine and heroin problems spiraling out of control.  Drugs are becoming a cancer on the young people of today.  The voice of the church must be heard in the realm of drug addiction.

2. Human Trafficking - We're starting to get our voice on human trafficking.  It's easy now, because it's becoming a more known issue.  There was the opportunity for the church to lead the way on this issue, but that didn't happen.  Instead we followed the gang, leading from behind.  The response of society as a whole has been slow on human trafficking.  This is no less than modern day slavery.  And in many ways much worse than ancient slavery.  This form of slavery in repeated sexual abuse, gang rape, sexual violence, and truly a life of unspeakable abuse for those forced into this trade.  It is pure evil.  We must disturb the present, and call out the evil!

3. Abortion - Many have taken a stand on the issue of abortion.  I think we need to get louder on this issue though.  We need more churches taking a stand.  We need to raise awareness like wildfire.  And it's starting to work.  In fact though millennials tend to be more pro-gay marriage, they also tend to be more anti-abortion.  This is a good trend.  Preach on abortion!  Take a stand on social media!  Get loud! 

4. Homosexuality - Oi vey, the great impenetrable issue for the church.  The megachurches are stark terrified of this issue.  The silence is deafening, once again.  Why?  Because we've seen the LGBT mafia strike time and again.  They've shown a powerful ability to bully Christian business owners and public figures into total submission, with the help of corrupt government officials and cultural cronyist big businesses, all carefully framed as bigotry by the secular drive by mainstream media.

The best way to target this sinful practice is not through silence.  And it's also not necessarily through slamming people with Bible quotes.  Actually, the best way to tackle this subject is with facts and evidence.  The facts are clear: homosexual marriage is harmful to society.  Gay marriage culture is not a healthy activity.  It's harmful to the people who practice in it, and it's harmful to culture in general.  There is a great apologetic out there by Dr. Frank Turek.  Check it out on Youtube titled "How Gay Marriage hurts Everyone." We have got to find our voice on this issue, despite the LGBT activists looking to bully and punish anyone who dissents.  The best way to turn the tide in this debate in not by going after gay marriage as wrong, but instead as framing the debate as one between LGBT authoritarianism and the cherished first amendment right of religious liberty. 

5. Religious Freedom - The cherished right to practice our religious faith without persecution is under attack by leftists, the news media, and big business.  The deck is stacked against Christians suddenly.  It's not looking good.  The church has to stand up with one voice and do something.  And keep doing something until we make sure this cherished right is engraved in stone for all time.

6. Pornography - The church is taking on pornography more and more.  It's a wonderful thing.  If you've got the pulpit, talk about it!  Encourage candid discussion.  You'd be amazed to see the statistics on pornography addiction in the church.  Many, many struggle with it!  Even pastors admit to pornography problems.  It's an epidemic.  The church must take a stand.  Keep it up!

7. Political Corruption - The USA is 19 trillion dollars in debt, Christians are losing their jobs for being Christians, children get their bible swiped by staff if they bring it to public school, gay marriage is now normal, the media celebrates LGBT pride, Congress and big business are together to screw over the general public, and we've got get involved in these issues.  We really really need to infiltrate the political system, take up positions of leadership, and lead the country to a sane future.  And we can. 

God is good.  He will help us take a stand on these issues.  We cannot be silent on these issues.  We need to preach on these issues, and encourage discussion.  The church must be the guide of the civilized world in championing great causes.  The church has always done that, at least until recent times.  Today the church is leading from behind, following the coat tails of the secular world.  That is not acceptable.  We must take the lead, despite the risks.  Yes there is a risk of controversy and media attack if we stand on these issues.  But God calls us to take a stand on these issues.  And He will bless our efforts.  Pray for our nation.  And raise awareness of these issues, and their solutions.  Pioneer causes of the future.  The witness of the church is blessed by champions who take on evils of their ages, whether slavery, education, or abortion.  

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