F. Earle FoxAn adaptation of a presentation given at the
1. Sifting to Win
2. An Elijah Sifting Contest
3. Five-Point Strategy for Discerning the Truth
4. The Evidence
5. Why are the Orthodox Believers Losing?
6. Why Talk about the Behavior?
7. Turn on Your Headlights...!!!
8. The Way Forward
NOTE: click for a 4-page *.pdf version of this article.
On November 2, 2003, I attended in Durham, New Hampshire, the Episcopal consecration of Gene Robinson as the first openly homosexual bishop in the history of Christendom in order to protest that consecration. I am an Episcopal priest and have had previous contacts with many of the leaders there. Post-event reactions were varied. Some thought I needed psychological help. Some thought I must be a right-wing fundamentalist homophobe. Persons on both sides, who would be described as conservative and liberal, took strong exception to what I said. And some were delighted.
Emmaus Ministries held a press conference on November 21 to continue the public discussion. The conversation among those present was vigorous, and caused me to rewrite and expand much of what I had said at the conference. The results below are a good summary of key points in Homosexuality: Good & Right in the Eyes of God?. (See end note on 4-page version.)
Sexuality issues are the focal point of all the major issues facing Christendom today. The heart of it all is the Biblical doctrine of creation, especially the part about we humans being created in His image, male and female. Christians cannot avoid the task of submitting our sexuality to the plan of God for creation. The public has lost confidence in our credibility to do that. We must learn how to do that reasonably and convincingly. Or we will remain the laughing stock of Western Civ. Nothing would more radically change the attitude of disrespect for the Christian faith than a clear, helpful, reasonable understanding of human sexuality.
And you shall remember all the way which the Lord your God has led you these forty years in the wilderness, that he might humble you, testing you to know what was in your heart, whether you would keep his commandments, or not." Deuteronomy 8: 2
A true liberal (one who liberates with truth) is in the same family with a true conservative (one who conserves the reasonable inheritance of truth). A pseudo-liberal ("liberal" in skeptical quotes) thinks there is no truth, and wants only to feel good. A pseudo-conservative ("conservative" in skeptical quotes) thinks there is a truth and that he has it all, but has not a clue about how to defend it. He cannot conserve anything. "Conservatives" and "liberals" are not in the same family because they can never communicate with each other. Most of the public debate today is a noisy battle between feel-gooders and position-defenders, a very unproductive battle.
Things will turn for the better when liberals become honest liberals and return to focussing on objective truth, and when conservatives learn again, likewise, to focus on defending their alleged truths honestly -- i.e., when both sides recover their intellectual integrity. The Christian community, of all places, must allow God to show us the fundamental unity between true liberalism and true conservatism -- both focussed on truth.
"Winning" means different things for different folks. Winning for some means "getting our way", "triumphing over the other side". For some, in our current Episcopal situation, "winning" means "getting out with our property", or "no longer having to deal with homosexuality again". Many, if not most, Christians see winning as the opposition between pseudo-liberals and pseudo-conservatives -- one side beating up on the other.
"Winning" for God is defined by His two highest laws, establishing a communion of love between Himself and His creatures, the Kingdom of Heaven. God is not interested in "getting everybody in to His kingdom", not in the usual sense. God is interested in finding those who want what He is offering (that kingdom of love) and bringing those people in. God is not interested in bringing in those who do not want what He is offering. We must first repent of not wanting what He is offering -- and then want that. Otherwise He is not interested in communion with us. "Depart from me, I never knew you...."
What God is offering is defined by the two Great Commandments. His commandments define His grace. Our obligations are at the same time His gift to us. We are commanded to receive the greatest blessing God can give, to get with all haste into His Kingdom. All commandments other than the two greatest are elaborations on how, in practical circumstances, to go about obeying those first two. The whole of our spiritual journey can be described as that journey from not wanting things which God is offering to wanting those things with all our heart, mind, soul, and strength. And then He can give us our heart's desire.
So God is sifting us, using the circumstances of our lives that He might humble us, testing us to know what is in our hearts, whether we will keep His commandments, or not. Knowing that can help enormously in preserving one's sanity in the midst of chaotic circumstances. Just remember, you are being sifted by your loving Father. No matter how terrible the circumstances, if we keep on growing according to God's purpose for our existence, we will always emerge better than we went in. In order for that to happen, we must seek the correcting hand of God, not run from it. Both sides of any contest will be sifted by God. Including right in our current culture war.
So what would "winning" be for orthodox Christians in the current circumstances of the Episcopal Church? What would winning look like from God's point of view? It would not mean vanquishing all those homosexual people. It would not mean no longer having to deal with perverted sex.
It would mean allowing ourselves to be sifted so that we could then be helpful to Him in the sifting process. It would mean getting God's way, not our way. It would mean learning how to discern truth from falsehood so we can hold our ground in public discussion. It would mean learning how to discuss sexuality matters candidly and publicly from a Godly point of view -- without shame or timidity. It would mean being able to speak the hard truth about difficult issues, gracefully and to the point -- out of love, not out of fear or anger. It would mean learning to love our homosexual opponents, face to face. Then we will be children of our Father in heaven.
The Body of Christ in America, and certainly in the Episcopal Church, does poorly on all counts. So we must allow God to use the present unhappy circumstances to sift and sort us, to convict, reform, and raise us up to maturity. God does not much care that we are "orthodox" if we are not living that orthodoxy in our relationships by the way of the cross.
For many orthodox people, perhaps most, the best course of action will be to move to the new North American Anglican province which is almost certain to emerge. Should some stay in ECUSA? Only if they know how to fight the spiritual battle. Sadly, we have shown that we conservative Episcopalians are almost 100% incapable or unwilling in that respect. We lost the war for the Episcopal Church, a war we had no business losing.
The question we must ask as we leave is, Have we learned anything from this experience? Has the sifting produced any fruit in our own souls? Can we be "winners" in any of the positive senses listed above? If we are not letting God sift us personally, in our own souls, then it does not much matter whether we leave or stay. We will just be getting in God's way whatever we do. And, in the end, we will be sifted out of the people of God. "Depart from me...."
Winning on sexuality issues does not mean a mindless fight across party lines. It means forcing the contest onto a search for truth -- for both sides. The only way for people to win is for truth (not "my way") to win. When truth wins, everybody wins. If there is no truth, we all lose. The culturally correct attitude says there is no objective truth, that we can all have our own version of truth. That is to condemn ourselves to a black hole of meaninglessness. No winners.
No one really believes that truth is relative. When push comes to shove, i.e., when it comes to the coercive force of civil law, everyone understands that life is either/or, not both/and.
Law is about coercion. Both behavior and law are either/or, not both/and. We can behave in one way or the other, not in two directions at once, and laws mandate in only one direction, not two. That is why homosexual advocates make a bee-line for the legislatures, and failing that, the courts of the land. They understand (though they say the opposite) that, although opinions are plural, truth is singular, and they plan to insert their opinion as the truth, using the long arm of the law.
They do not believe their truth is relative. They say that only to get their opposition to relativize their conservative truth so that they can insert their revisionist truth unopposed. Relativizing truth is a deceitful and dishonest tactic -- for which the orthodox routinely fall.
So, to force the truth issue in contentious situations, let us propose an "Elijah sifting contest" ("If Baal be God, then let us follow him, but if the Lord be God, let us follow Him. Now, let us do an experiment to find out who gets sifted out of the ‘God’ category." I Kings 18:17-40). We must say:
We face each other from opposite sides of a large chasm, but if the evidence should show that God approves of homosexual behavior and that such behavior is consistent with a healthy lifestyle, then I will stand with you.
On the other hand, if the evidence should show that God does not approve of homosexual behavior, or that such behavior is not consistent with good health, then we ask if you would be willing to reconsider your position.
This little two-liner focuses the issue on evidence, not personalities or name-calling. It makes my side vulnerable to the evidence, and invites the other side to do likewise. It says that, if I am wrong, I want to know, and invites the other side to do likewise. It spells out the conditions upon which my case can be disproven, and invites the other side to do likewise.
In two lines, the conditions for honest discussion are set up.
Furthermore, offering honest discussion is one of the most powerful ways to affirm another person. Using this, one can visibly see the walls go down and the other side relax.
Reason is a fundamental aspect of Biblical religion, and especially of the Anglican Way. Whatever else homosexuality might be, it is at least a behavior. We are forbidden to judge persons (that God alone can do), but we are required to judge behavior (every commandment is a commandment to judge behavior -- our own first, and, when appropriate, that of others).
There are five steps to making proper judgements about homosexual behavior, five points that lead us inexorably to answer the question: Is homosexuality good and right in the eyes of God?
1. If homosexuality is at least a behavior, what behavior, precisely, are we being asked to approve? We do not want to buy a pig in a poke. What are the specific behaviors and approximate percentage of homosexual persons who engage in each of these behaviors?
2. What are the medical, psychological, and sociological consequences of homosexual behavior, and of defending such behavior?
3. Some say that homosexuality is much more than a behavior, it is a genuine inborn identity, others say that it is a choice, still others that it is a compulsive, lethal addiction? What does the evidence say?
4. Given the answers to #1-3 above: Would a loving person (God or anyone else) approve the homosexual lifestyle or reject it?
5. Given the answer to #4: What should the public do (vote, campaign, teach our children, make public policy) about this situation?
Those five steps will lead to a clear and consistent conclusion.
Let's take those five points one at a time.
1. What are we being asked to approve? Advocates of homosexuality will seldom volunteer to explain their sexual behavior. Rather, they deliberately hide their behavior in deceitful ways from public discussion (see After the Ball, by Marshall Kirk and Hunter Madsen, two primary homosexualist strategists, who recommend this deceit as a part of their strategy). So seekers of truth must learn on their own to explain the behavior -- publicly.
Studies from both sides of the fence focus on the same behaviors and have reasonably similar figures on what percentages of homosexual persons engage in the various behaviors. There is little debate about the general picture of the misnamed "gay" lifestyle.
The following figures are taken from one of the largest studies on this subject "The Gay Report" (1979), by two homosexual researchers, Jay and Young. The pair are stunningly candid. Theirs are the figures I used in my protest at the Episcopal consecration of Gene Robinson.
For males, around 99% engage in oral sex. Approximately 91% engage in anal sex. 82% engage in "rimming", touching the anus of one's partner with one's tongue and inserting the tongue into the anus. 22% engage in "fisting", inserting one's fist into the rectum of the partner. 23% engage in "golden showers", urinating on each other. 4% engage in "scat", the eating of feces, and in "mud rolling", rolling on the floor where feces have been deposited.
One asks Gene Robinson and Frank Griswold, "What of these behaviors do you think God wants to bless?" That is not a rhetorical question. We want an answer.
2. What are the consequences of these behaviors? Put very briefly...
The medical consequences are so devastating that the average practicing homosexual person loses from 25% to 40% of his or her lifespan, probably not living beyond 50 in a culture where we normally live well into our 70's. The medical facts are so well documented that there is no excuse for the abysmal ignorance of the public, or for the cowardice of the medical professionals in warning about such matters.
Psychologically, the evidence shows homosexuality to be a compulsive, lethal addiction. When warned that continuing their behavior would result in a high death rate, those active typically respond that such a request is an attack on their identity, not on their behavior. "Homosexuality is who I am, not what I do!!" The continued justification and practice of self-destructive behavior, even when warned, is evidence of a compulsive and addictive pattern.
The social consequences of the homosexual agenda include the deconstruction of marriage and of sexual morality, and the criminalization of honest discussion through so-called "hate-crime" laws.
People are dying in massive numbers because those in the medical watchtowers have remained silent as the enemy entered the gates and took over the levers of power. Health professionals almost across the board are guilty of malpractice and betrayal of the American public.
3. What is homosexuality? Prior to the 1990's, no researchers on either side of the fence said either that homosexuality was genetic, inborn, or otherwise "hardwired", or that one could not change one's orientation. Alfred Kinsey, John Money, Masters and Johnson, all pansexual proponents, said that persons could change, and that it was their own business.
It was not until the 1990's that homosexual activists discovered the PR value of getting people to believe that their condition was "genetic" or "biologically determined". Several studies during the early and middle '90's were alleged to prove such. Not one of those studies has survived scientific peer review, and one will look long and hard to find a respected researcher who today will make that claim. Even some homosexual groups are now admitting that the "inborn" case has failed.
As above, the prodigious promiscuity coupled with the state of denial of the lethal dangers involved provide incontestable evidence that homosexual behavior is a compulsive and addictive orientation looking for self-justification in a pseudo-identity.
4. What would a loving person, such as God, say of such a condition? God might be heard to say, "Love the sinner and hate the sin.... Cut the sin out, it is a cancer in the soul of the sinner. It will kill him." That can be done, of course, only with the consent and cooperation of the sinner.
Love not based on objective truth is no love at all. It is betrayal. Love seeks the welfare of the beloved, not emotional bondage. Love speaks the hard word of truth even when it causes pain, and will not allow a person caught in bondage to define the diagnosis. A loving person does not condemn persons, but gives an honest and candid assessment of the behavior. A loving person would advise, "Just say 'no'."
5. What would the above imply for public policy? Honest public policy would call an addiction an addiction, and then assist those seeking help. Honest public policy would insist on open, candid discussion of the health issues (i.e., insist on honest science) with appropriate public health measures. We would not have the deliberate (and common) subversion of public policy which betrays the very persons so badly in need of honest discussion.
A loving church would offer the gift of salvation, repentance and forgiveness of sins. It would offer spiritual fellowship, prayer and help in overcoming self-destructive patterns, assistance in finding resources, and companionship along the way. The church would offer resources for discipleship into mature adulthood, and for spiritual and emotional healing. And then the church would stand firmly for rational public policy which assisted in these aims.
Given the above one-sided evidence, how can we explain that the orthodox tradition has been consistently and roundly trounced in the public arena? Why has the conservative position in the Episcopal Church been run from the field?
I lived in the Episcopal Diocese of Connecticut for 23 years. During the 1980's, along came both the AIDS crisis.... and a vociferous Episcopal homosexual lobby. Shortly after Bishop John Spong came out with his "Newark Report" (Episcopal Diocese of Newark, NJ) telling us to "rethink" our stance on sexual morality, my own Diocese of Connecticut issued a similar report with similar conclusions. I was stunned. As the issues came up on our diocesan conventions, I would oppose measures which compromised both honest science and Biblical faith and practice. I would bring a booktable to the conventions with material by both others and myself documenting the behavior and health statistics. There were several well known conservative leaders in the diocese. Not one of them would take a consistent public stand, and they studiously avoided my booktable.
The homosexual agenda went forward in Connecticut almost unopposed.
That same picture took place on the national scene. I attended the four General Conventions (which meets triennially) from 1988 to 1997, booktable and all, and presented to the bishops and deputies the same information I am sharing here. Never once, to my knowledge, did that information make it to the floor of debate. Not, at least, so's you'd notice.
Episcopal clergy all over the country know about Homosexuality: Good & Right in the Eyes of God? -- which documents all of these matters, and much, much more. I have friends who are trying to put it into the hands of relevant Episcopal leaders. It is, if I may say so, a well-written book. It is perhaps the only comprehensive, Biblical, and scientifically sound strategy for winning the sexuality debate. But Episcopal leadership are not interested. Why is this so?
The reason seems quite clear. Episcopal leadership is not willing to talk about homosexual behavior -- the issue regarding which the homosexual agenda is terminally vulnerable. That is their Achilles' heel, their jugular vein. But Episcopal leadership is not willing to go after it.
My testimony at the consecration of Gene Robinson, by the grace of God came first in line. The spotlight shone squarely on homosexual behavior right in front of God and everybody. The others who gave testimony after mine, or at least some of them, were, it turns out, quite disturbed that I would talk about the behavior so blatantly, and especially, it seems, that my remarks preceded theirs. Episcopal conservatives are pathologically polite. Our leadership cannot bear the thought of actually changing anyone's mind, of actually making a difference in the outcome, of hurting anyone's feelings. Conservatives have, for the better than fifteen years that I have been involved in this degraded discussion, refused to talk about homosexual behavior.
The issues raised by the other protesters needed to be raised (the authority of Scripture, dividing the Church, unilateral action, etc.). Had they affirmed what I had just said and built on it with their own testimonies, there would have been an electric impact in the arena. But they were incapable or unwilling. Conservatives have rarely developed the skills for supporting one another in public debate, e.g., bringing up again a point which has been ducked, shut down, or misinterpreted with an earlier speaker.
In the aftermath of the event, no one on either side of the fence denied that my list of behaviors was typical of the homosexual lifestyle. No one said that I had lied or misquoted the facts. I was just un-Episcopally impolite. At the consecration of a bishop, of all things.
The homosexual side simply ignored the matter (for the most part) because the last thing they want is a public airing of the subject. And they know they can count on conservative pathological politeness. For the most part, our side has cooperated with them by not insisting on the truth.
That, in a nutshell, is why we lost the battle for the Episcopal Church.
I did not expect Presiding Bishop Frank Griswold to shut down the proceedings to verify whether what I said was true. He knows perfectly well that it is true, and he does not care. He knows perfectly well that this behavior has infected close to 1,000,000 and killed about 400,000 Americans since the AIDS crisis began, and he does not care. He does not care that homosexual persons are killing themselves and each other -- so long as they do it "lovingly".
He cares about anyone discussing the behavior only because it destroys the magnificent homosexual PR program convincing the public that homosexual persons are engaged in benign and harmless behavior. Griswold had to shut down my testimony to keep anyone from actually talking about the elephant in the living room. America (and Western Civilization) has been successfully brainwashed into not investigating the very thing we are being asked to approve. That is astonishing.
But Griswold did not have to shut down the testimony of the others. He was quite capable of talking around their points on distorting Scripture and splitting the Church, as he had been doing for several years, and Edmund Browning before him. But he could not talk around the behavior. He had to shut it down.
Behavior is their prime point of vulnerability. If conservative leaders will not force homosexual behavior (and its consequences) into the discussion, we can plan on continuing to lose the sexuality wars. If homosexual advocates knew that every time they rose to speak they would have to defend their behavior, there would be far fewer of them getting up to speak. And the tide of public opinion would begin to swing toward common sense sanity.
We either play hardball, or we continue to lose.
Episcopalians (and to be fair, conservatives almost everywhere) seem to be very uncomfortable with the human body. They do not know how to talk about body parts gracefully and objectively. Nevermind that the kids on the street, who are supremely vulnerable to seduction into sexual suicide, talk about body parts all the time -- not very gracefully -- because so few conservative parents teach their children how. And nevermind that the public school system of Massachusetts is teaching students as young as twelve years old how to perform these behaviors described above. That is all recorded on tape and written up, including their dialogues with the children, as documented in our book. They do not deny that they are doing that. They (GLSEN, the Massachusetts governor and school system, and the legal system) just don't see a problem. (For a tape documenting these charges, contact Emmaus Ministries. I have distributed over 200 copies of this tape, with no visible reaction from conservative leadership.)
The even more appalling fact is that the parents of these children who are being criminally sexually abused by the school system cannot find the courage to remove their children from such insanity and to go after the culprits legally. The same thing is underway in California, and projected in every state in the Union, including your local school system.
And conservative leadership cannot talk about the behavior.
That is dereliction of duty and betrayal of the very persons who need truth the most -- those caught in this compulsive, lethal addiction, and the young people being seduced into it.
Some might think "compulsive, lethal addiction" is too strong. Close to a million persons have contracted AIDS with 400,000 dead, a behavior-caused, and thus totally preventable, disease. My language was not too strong. It was too little and too late.
The health professions, the education system, almost all government agencies, and the media have betrayed their absolute obligation to be systematic truth-seekers and truth-tellers. We wait in vain for an outbreak of honest investigative reporting from newspapers. The facts are clear and easily obtainable, so they are either incompetent or they are dishonest.
If you continue in my word, you are truly my disciples,
and you will know the truth,
and the truth will make you free. John 8:31 ff.
Sexuality discussion from the "liberal" side, at least since Alfred Kinsey’s travesty of sexuality scholarship in the 1940's and '50's, has never been a reasonable or honest discussion. It has never been a search for truth, never a research after righteousness. It has been a massive justification for lust and the promotion of a lethal addiction. As many have noted, the "liberals" are evil and the "conservatives" stupid.
So it is futile to search for the common ground of understanding whereby we can come to agreement, or whereby pseudo-liberals will make room for the Biblical position on anything at all. Not only are the philosophical and theological presuppositions all mutually contradictory (two opposing worldviews), but the homosexual agenda is built on deceit. They are not interested in the truth. If they were wrong, they would not want to know. Or, they would not want the public to know.
That does not mean there are no honest persons in the "liberal" camp, but it does mean that if they are honest, they are duped, that the basic strategy of the "liberals" is dishonest, and that we are in a spiritual war, not a normal debate.
The rules of spiritual warfare differ from those of honest debate. There is no ground upon which "they will listen to us". In the parable of the wicked tenants, the king is pictured as thinking that if he sends his son, "they will listen". God, of course, knew that we, the wicked tenants of earth, would not listen to His Son. The people of darkness will not listen to the people of light. The question before us is whether we know how to be effective people of the light. Do we know how to wield the Sword of the Spirit, the word of truth. If truth is ever put on the table, it will be put there against the fierce opposition of the homosexual agenda. If conservatives can only be "polite", it will never happen.
The purpose of honest debate (as in science and forming public policy) is to find the truth about an issue, not to "win" over the other side. But truth is not the purpose of the homosexual agenda. Their purpose is to win at any cost, whatever they can get away with. They have accomplished that purpose largely through a program of (in the literal, technical sense of the word) brainwashing, mind-control aimed at the public, largely through are school system and the media. We document this in our book.
But brainwashing is effective only if there is
(1) absolute control of information input, or (2) if the subject does not know that it is happening. Both of those conditions are being imposed successfully enough through the media and our schools so that the average American does not know that he is being systematically lied to -- in the Church and out of it. They aim at the children because they are the least able to detect being brainwashed. So they aim at the media and the education system.
Brainwashing can be resisted and overcome by persons who have sufficient spiritual, emotional, and intellectual stability, i.e., persons who are truth-seekers and who understand the process of truth-seeking and truth-speaking. As in, "Come, let us reason together..." that very process into which God invites anyone who will listen. God is inviting us into a "realty check", precisely what Jesus was pointing to in John 8:31 ff. Following Jesus is a journey into reality, into things as they really are. Living in reality requires spiritual, psychological, and intellectual integrity. All three. If any one is lacking, the other two will fail also.
Western civilization has, to a dangerous degree, lost (or cast off) intellectual integrity. The West, famous for science and due process in civil law, both gifts from God, has spurned both, casting itself onto the chartless seas of the post-modern quest for feeling good. "Conservatives" are just as good-feeling (not truth) oriented as the "liberals". They just want "conservative" good feelings. Western Civilization is nearing the precipice of the black hole of the Fall, leading inexorably to death.
Western Christianity had the opportunity to employ the Godly gifts of science and due process to up the ante in challenging the world to an Elijah contest, but we failed. For two centuries, we have dropped the Sword of the Spirit and hid in our churches. It is time to come out of our own closets.
Our intellects are like headlights on a car. With our headlights we can see far down the night road so that we know what we are about to be engaged with. If we have only our parking lights on, we will be engaged before we know what we have hit. Too late.
Just so, shutting down our intellects has blinded us to the future -- we could not "think ahead". We could not, as Jesus chided His people, read the signs of the times. Beginning in the early 1800's, Christians began to believe that reason and revelation were enemies, and so thought they could defend their faith relying on Scripture apart from reason. It was a fatal mistake, which led to our current situation of vocal Christians being almost totally absent from education at any level, and to the near destruction of any effective Christian education in churches.
As a result, Christian for at least a century and a half have been blind to what was being done to them and to Western Civilization. A nation founded on the Bible has become, by law, an anti-Christ nation. With just a few exceptions, we could not reason that, "if we have these secular foundations, we will arrive at those conclusions...." We could not see far down the road.
So, we have had a horrendous civil war, two world wars, we are now killing babies in the womb, our legally mandated education system is deconstructing the minds, hearts, and faith of our children, crime, drugs, and sexual promiscuity have escalated off the charts. And we blather on about this and that solution, but we do not know what to do about it. Christians not only lost the Episcopal Church, we lost the battle for the whole 20th century. It was the most violent and debauched century of human history.
Conservatives are rejoicing that at last, with the recent Supreme Court Lawrence v. Texas decision, striking down sodomy laws, there has been a remarkable move in America back away from approval of the homosexual lifestyle and orientation. That is well and good. It is high time that we woke up to the disaster which is upon us. The question is, "Why did we not see this coming a century and a half ago and take corrective measures? What persuaded us that we should go along with our own execution?"
The answer is (largely) that we had so compromised our intellectual integrity that we were blind to what was happening. We had been persuaded to turn off our headlights. We could not read the signs of the times.
My blunt language describing homosexual behavior at the consecration was not meant to embarrass or beat up on those present. It was meant to get the truth, which Frank Griswold has systematically been denying, on the table. I desire to be no more embarrassing than truth is itself embarrassing.
My words were meant to encourage, to call to account, the conservatives who should be standing on the relevant truth of the matter. The question was not whether the revisionists would be reasonable (they do not even plan to), but whether we conservative, orthodox people would know how to force reason to the table. Do we know how to turn on the headlights? Do we know how to expose the very deceit which is paralyzing public discussion? Dare we pick up the Sword of the Spirit?
I conclude that the primary reason God told me to witness at the Robinson consecration was not for the benefit of the revisionists (the liberals who do not liberate anyone), but as a warning to those conservatives (who do not conserve anything). The revisionists did not win the war for the Episcopal Church. Our side gave it away to them.
God is not shocked by blunt language. The Bible is full of it -- much of it from His mouth. God roles up His sleeves and gets to work. If He needs to get His hands dirty to save our decrepit souls, dirty they will get. As Harry Truman said, "If you can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen!" Leaders who are not willing to grapple directly and openly with the blunt facts of sexuality should get out of the kitchen. "Lead, follow, or get out of the way..."
It appears to me that God will have to raise up a new generation of leadership, that the present generation has no stomach for the fight, and that we are passing on to our children and grandchildren the responsibility for a battle we should have won. The cost for them to win will be much greater than the cost we would have paid. Our grand children will no more thank us than we now thank Neville Chamberlain.
The battle is not about sexuality merely. It is about the survival of civilization. Our book is not merely about homosexuality. It is much more about the nature of the Christian faith, about how we know the truth at all, and about how to fight the spiritual warfare in which we are immersed . Homosexuality is merely the focus around which all of these much deeper issues currently manifest themselves. A victory in the sexuality areas would thus impact all of the deeper areas.
We cannot avoid sexuality to "get onto the real tasks of the Church", as many say. Right now, sexuality is the real task of the Church. Nothing today would more profoundly and positively impact the health of Christendom than solid teaching on what it means to be made in the image of God -- male and female.
Winning this battle will take a large-scale retooling of our thinking and behavior, of our commitment to the Lord Jesus Christ, to speaking the hard truth in love. It will mean learning how to have our Elijah contest, allowing God to sift us so that we can cooperate with Him in sifting the world. Good signs are slowly appearing that God is beginning a reversal of the bad news. Some extraordinary Christian apologists are at work (Ravi Zacharias, Hugh Ross, Philip Johnson, John Rankin, and others). Their work has not yet hit the streets, i.e., few of their readers are doing what they are doing, or carrying their ideas into the public arena. But good seeds are sprouting on good soil.
Truth is the only winnable battle. And when truth wins, everybody wins.
NOTE: Homosexual behavior is difficult to talk about. This article may be copied (only in its entirety) and used as a resource for handouts, discussion groups, and conversation starters. Available in a 4-page *.pdf format at http://theRoadtoEmmaus.org
The above material is developed in great detail in...
Homosexuality: Good & Right in the
Eyes of God?
the Wedding of Truth to Compassion
and Reason to Revelation
By Earle Fox & David Virtue
Other relevant resources available in the Shopping Mall
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