As I look out the window in my office I see that the weatherman’s prediction was right. It’s snowing. The coming storm came.
Rachel Holt, from KMVT, came by on Tuesday to get some thoughts from me on the same-sex marriage discussion going on in the region. I don’t know how the end result, post edit, context statements will come across yet, but I’ve been pondering the critical moment the church is in today (as she always has been.)
The apostle Paul told Timothy to be a pillar and buttress of truth (1 Timothy 3:15). There is always a need for the church to be this voice.
If we allow emotion to rule our lives we will always lean toward being an enemy of God. Today, many are advocating for states to recognize same-sex partners as the “same as” heterosexual marriages. This is complex isn’t it?
This is a definition issue, not a rights issue.
There is no place for anyone to treat a homosexual as a lesser person or less than. This is the complexity of the matter. To speak against homosexuality is interpreted as equal to racial discrimination. This is not the same topic.
Marriage is unique. It is all about differences; books are written, studies are conducted, conferences are held, and the bible declares the two – male and female – are one.
Now, I’m distracted from the reason for writing today.
The matter on my mind today is about the future of the church. I’m not worried about the future of the church, Scripture says that the church will prevail. My interest is in regard to Paul’s argument to Timothy about why he tells him to be a pillar and buttress of truth.
There is no reason for Paul to instruct Timothy to be this unless there is a present and a future need. Paul picked up the architectural illustration of weight supporting elements that cause buildings to be safe today and remain into the future. Without them, everyone is at risk of being injured.
There is little romance when it comes to talking about absolutes. People are won over with stories the pull on emotionalism, but the church is instructed to be mindful to “structural” (truthful) integrity. A building’s integrity is depending on the integrity of the architect. Marriage, if it is to survive, must find its stability in the integrity of its architect. The church is blessed with the responsibility to both know and speak this truth into her culture.
Let’s be honest about this…
There is a clear and bold agenda in our land today to redefine the term “marriage.” The way the enemy of the Lord is doing this is with winsome stories that pull on emotional strings of caring people.
The Lord’s people are caring people.
The enemy knows this about our design, it’s our character. We care about people. We meet peoples needs. We seek ways to pull together and help struggling people. Look at our history.
In caring for people, we must never compromise our place in our communities. Our duty to the city is to be a pillar and buttress of truth, not the carnival atmosphere non-profit organization that many have become. This is why, when we abandon this role and blind ourselves with emotionalism, we become a danger to our community rather than a truly safe place.
The state of Idaho may soon travel down the same path as other states; but church, you must not abandon your duty.
We are no longer safe harbors in dangerous windstorms, we no longer safely navigate ships to port if we put the light out of the lighthouse, we can no longer rescue a perishing soul when we rule the day with un-directed emotion.
Yes, we are still emotional beings. We care about people. But when we care about them, we love them enough to plead with them from the safe place of truth.
Is the church prepared for the coming storm? Have we prepared our children to prepare their children to be the pillar and buttress of truth? Or have we simple taught them how to change with the times and keep the numbers up? Will we really turn to the survey conducting arm of our denominational publishing houses? Or are you prepared to steadfastly keep your gaze on the King of Glory? Has the church forgotten? Her duty is to her Savior.
Twin Falls… Idaho… United States of America… If you want to build a society with a redefined definition of marriage, you are surely going about it the right way. But are you prepared for God to turn you over to your sinful cravings?
Church of the Lord Jesus Christ… are you going to speak into this matter with truth-less ‘caring’? Oh, arise church! Don’t turn that lamp of truth off as the storm approaches. Keep it on, do the unromantic thing and keep the light on. It’s your duty. Do it even when the culture complains about how the lamp keeps them up at night. Arise, church, and teach truth. Arise, church, and give helpful compassion to a spiritually ‘homeless soul’ in the raging blizzard of our day, and be a safe-haven that will provide lasting refuge as well.
Vance Havner put it this way: “Perhaps we do not sharpen the ax because it means work and hard, unromantic effort. Our lives need a going over now and then and the flesh does not relish it.”