There must be some sort of law in operation which posits that the higher you climb in the celebrity ranks, the lower you sink in mental ability and moral clarity. We have all sorts of Hollywood celebs, pop stars, and other media marvels who seem intent on doing and saying really dumb things.
I have often documented such cases on this site, and will undoubtedly have plenty of fodder in the future to keep writing such pieces. In today’s news we have another prime example of all this. It seems Miley Cyrus, the 18-year-old pop star, is again seeking to impress us all with her theological knowledge as she again champions the homosexual agenda.
Here is how the story is covered: “Miley Cyrus has gone on record in support of gay rights in the past, but this time she went with a decidedly more permanent statement. Last Friday, the singer tweeted a photo of her new tattoo, an equal sign on her right ringer finger, with the caption ‘All LOVE is equal.’ In a year where the ‘It Gets Better’ videos have served as a very formal, very scripted (and, yes, very powerful) beacon of the gay rights landscape, Cyrus’s subtle nod is a quirky (and dare I even say refreshing?) political affirmation.
“If nothing else, she is, in her own way, breathing new life into the debate with the kind of nonchalance that only an 18-year-old can. Unfortunately for Miss Miley, announcing her new art didn’t turn out to be all peace, love, and rainbows. Shortly after Cyrus showed off her ink, one of her followers, named @MileyCyrusLuver, tried to engage the pop star in a theology debate by citing Bible verses against homosexuality.
“Cyrus kept her rebuttal short: ‘Where does it say in the bible to judge others? Oh right. It doesn’t. GOD is the only judge honey’. Alas, the same can’t be said of her strong-minded fans. Over the weekend, a full-scale Twitter battle erupted between her fans, who reportedly went so far as to Tweet death threats against @MileyCyrusLuver.”
Now I have written before on this site about young Miley and her celebrity family: billmuehlenberg.com/2011/02/21/miley-cyrus-advice-for-your-dad/
And I have written before about when she actually starts preaching to us about what Jesus would do. She has told us earlier that Jesus just wants everyone to be happy, even in their homosexuality. I discuss her theological wisdom here: billmuehlenberg.com/2009/04/25/more-celebrity-zingers/
So what we have here is just more of the same. She and her father, musician Billy Ray Cyrus, have had exposure to biblical Christianity, and he has even released several Christian albums. But she clearly seems to be happy to reject her family faith, and jump on board the trendy homosexual rights bandwagon.
Now if any celeb wants to push any radical agenda, that is up to them. But when they seek to drag God and Christ into the debate, and seek to justify what they are doing by appeals to Scripture, that is when I for one stand up and take notice, and feel compelled to weigh into the debate.
In typical fashion, she tries to make a biblical case when it is obvious that she does not even know what is in her Bible – if she indeed even ever reads it. So Miley the Bible scholar informs us that the Bible nowhere tells us to judge others.
Nowhere? So what do we do with the many dozens of biblical passages which command us to do exactly that? I recently went through the New Testament, jotting down every time Christians are told to judge, to discern, to test, to rebuke, and to hold one another to account.
All up there are around a hundred such passages, found in every single NT book bar one. When we do find a warning in Scripture about judging, it clearly has to do with hypocritical judgment. But I have dealt with this elsewhere: billmuehlenberg.com/2008/10/08/thou-shalt-judge/
Aside from getting this issue of judging wrong big time, of perhaps greater concern is her apparent complete ignorance about what biblical love is all about. Sorry Miley, but all love is not equal. Indeed, love has nothing to do with feelings or emotions in the first place. Biblical love is about willing the highest good of the other person.
It is not about affirming and endorsing a dead-end lifestyle which is not only biblically illicit, but is simply a dangerous and high-risk lifestyle that we should not wish on anyone. But I have discussed this quite often elsewhere. Indeed, in my soon-to-be-released book, I spend quite a bit of time on this topic. So let me conclude here with a short section from that book:
This is a common fall-back position. “God is love” we are told. “We need to love and accept people just as God loved and accepted all people.” This is of course a half-truth. And as with all half-truths, it contains enough truth to sound convincing, but it also contains enough falsehood to seriously lead one astray.
Of course God is loving and gracious. He is also holy, just and pure. All the attributes together make up the Godhead. His various attributes are never set at odds with one another, and all are fully present at all times. God always loves, but he always hates sin. He is always ready to forgive, but is always set to judge those who reject his love and forgiveness.
The loving Christ of the gospels was also the person who spoke more about hell and judgment to come than any other person in the Bible. The same Christ who drew children in his arms will also come back with a sword to judge the earth, as the Book of Revelation makes clear.
Yes love matters. But so too does holiness, righteousness and justice. When we come to God, we come under his terms, not our own. His holiness has not been lessened one iota. Christ’s death at Calvary was an act of supreme love and supreme justice combined. He has paid the penalty for our sins. But when we come to Christ and receive his forgiveness, we must, like the accepted adulterer, “go and sin no more” (John 8:11).
And as I already mentioned, if we really love someone, we will want the best for them. The best for a person never comes by violating God’s laws, which are for our good. As one Christian counsellor states, “God has already declared what love is and is not by the commands He had given. Love is the fulfillment of the law (Rom. 13:10), so any breaking of the law is an unloving act.”