How well meaning Christians can love people into an eternal death!
Originally featured in a CMI newsletter, July 2010
Unfortunately, many within the church unwittingly fall for an oft used tactic by atheists, because they are scared that the God of a Christian faith would be caricatured as an unloving, judgmental Creator. To portray God as irrelevant and out of touch in a politically correct world we hear statements like “If God is a God of love why doesn’t he love homosexuals?” Or pro-abortionists might say “If God is all-knowing He would understand why some need to have abortions.”
Of course these are straw man arguments—that is, they are fallacies presented in a way to divert from the core issue. And the core issue always goes back to Genesis because it really cuts to the chase. That is, if God is Creator, He has the perfect right to say what happens with His Creation. He made it; He owns it; He sets the rules! (And yes He does love us—see later). This highlights why the creation issue is the key cultural battleground today. The skeptics hope that the church will avoid dealing with the creation issue by getting them to see it as non-essential and divisive. They readily recognize that the weak underbelly of the church—the all embracing liberal sections of it—are so eager not to cause offence that they unwittingly actually buy into this antigod agenda (See Foxes crying foul in the henhouse! for some examples of this), or capitulate completely by embracing evolution.
Who is being divisive really?
For example, many leaders in the modern Emergent and Seeker Sensitive church phenomenon, if asked a straight forward question like “Is homosexuality wrong?”, will wriggle about and often proffer an explanation of 1 Corinthians 6:9 from the ‘New Standard, Non-Inspired, Double Speak’ translation of the Bible to avoid the plain obvious meaning of such passages (lest we cause offence). The motive might be well-meaning by trying to avoid being divisive. But I wonder how many realize, that those who do not accept the Scriptures in the plainest, straightforward way that the authors intended are actually the ones that are being divisive—particularly when it comes to the book of Genesis. If we retreat from a plain understanding of the foundational meaning for the entrance of sin, death and our need for salvation, then the Bible is up for grabs for any interpretation that one desires. After all, if the truth does not begin in the first book, where does is begin?
The liberal all-inclusive notion that God ‘loves’ all sinners (as in, will not judge gays and indeed all sinners who are outside of Christ) actually has the opposite effect of what those well-meaning churches and leaders desire. If God has no problems with sin then why even bother becoming a Christian? The evolutionary, humanistic worldview says evolution is ‘real’ science, therefore Genesis is wrong, there is no creator, so there is no need for a savior and thus, one can make up your own rules about life. For most, if evolution is true then what’s the point of going to church? The caricature is actually founded if the church does not believe what it is supposed to believe!
To find the origin of sin and define what it means one has to go back to Genesis—the New Testament points back there (Romans 5:12). Sin is rebellion from the Creator (the way that the majority of the world lives its life today—justified somewhat by evolution), and subsequent to the events in the Garden of Eden the law was given that we might realize our offences and more importantly who we are offending. If inclusivity is at the expense of not pointing out that sin offends the Creator, then how will people ever understand that they are sinners and that they need to be saved?
It’s not complicated
The Gospel is not hard to understand. We live in a sin-cursed, fallen world, we are all going to die and there is nothing we can do to save ourselves. Is God a God of love? Absolutely! “… God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8). And Christ is God’s own Son—the Creator of the universe. But it won’t make a lot of sense if we don’t refer people back to the foundational reason they need to be saved. If we don’t, then we risk ‘loving’ people into a Godless eternity. “For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him” (John 3:17). Let’s similarly ‘love’ our neighbours by telling them the truth of creation.
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