It is getting to the point that if I declare in public that two plus two equals four, I may well offend somebody. If I aver in the public arena that we need to eat and breathe, it is possible I can get in trouble with someone or some group. If I say children should be protected, some militant group will try to sue me or take me to some court or tribunal.
Sound a bit far-fetched? Well, it is not at all sadly. We live in such a morally inverted, politically correct world that to stand for any truth in the public square is likely to get you into all sorts of trouble. And this is happening all the time unfortunately.
Take one of the most common sense observations there is – which happens to be backed up by thousands of social science studies. Simply declare in a newspaper, on the radio, in a public debate, and so on, that children do best when raised by their own biological mother and father and all hell will break loose.
You will be bullied, threatened, demonised, pilloried and treated like an utter pariah. How do I know this? Well, I get this treatment all the time. And so do many others. Simply state the truth about the social science data as to the well-being of children, and the homosexual jackboots and their PC buddies in the media and courts will jump all over you.
Consider the case of a terrific man in Perth. This elderly gentleman is a longstanding medical doctor, a loving family man, and also happens to believe the social science research on what is best for children. But daring to state this in a submission to a public inquiry has meant he nearly lost his head.
Indeed, it is surprising that we did not see him hanging from the gallows by now, or at least tarred and feathered and run out of town. Imagine that: daring to speak up for the welfare of children! That sure gets the activists furious and scurrying for the heavy hand of the law to shut you up instantly and permanently.
Here is the story of how this brave soul faced the wrath of the homosexual inquisition. Fortunately he just managed to escape with his life: “A Perth GP investigated after he led a group of doctors opposing gay marriage on health grounds has reportedly been cleared by the Medical Board. Founder of the Doctors for the Family group, Lachlan Dunjey, made a submission to a Senate inquiry into marriage equality last year stating gay marriage was a health risk.
“The submission prompted outrage from civil liberty groups because it stated that marriage should remain between a man and a woman, and if same-sex marriage were allowed it would normalise homosexuality and have ‘health consequences’. ‘We submit that the evidence is clear that children who grow up in a family with a mother and father do better in all parameters than children without,’ it read.
“In May last year the Sunday Herald Sun revealed 22 Victorian GPs, anaesthetists, obstetricians, palliative care specialists and psychiatrists, including Victoria’s deputy chief psychiatrist, Prof Kuruvilla George, joined 150 colleagues interstate to argue gay marriage posed a health risk to society.
“Dr Dunjey told website Australian Doctor this week he had been investigated by the Medical Board of Australia after allegations of misconduct made by another doctor and cleared. Dr Dunjey ran as a Senate candidate for the Christian Democratic Party in the 2004 federal election. ‘It is about freedom of speech … it was sad really as I received a lot of hate mail and I don’t believe people should be vilified or targeted for expressing a view,’ he told the website.”
I have already written about poor Prof George who was hounded out of his position by the tolerance brigade: billmuehlenberg.com/2012/05/15/equal-opportunities-are-only-for-some/
Simply speak the truth, and claim what everyone until recently knew to be just plain common sense, and you will face the wrath of the PC witch hunters, led especially by the homosexual militants. They are on a search and destroy mission to eradicate or at least silence anyone who dares to question their radical agenda.
In this regard I quite appreciate a recent article saying much the same thing by an American evangelical. Owen Strachan puts it this way: “I fear that some of my evangelical friends are not seeing reality even as it bears down on them. Do you realize that if you define marriage as the exclusive union of a man and a woman, you are already, even if you speak in the gentlest, softest, most nuanced, most hyper-qualified terms, considered a bigot by a vocal and highly influential contingent today?”
Yes, to affirm marriage as between a man and a woman – something which basically almost everyone did throughout all of human history, except for the past decade or two – will result in you being attacked and vilified by the PC thought police.
He explains how this came about, and why we cannot keep silent: “When it comes to evangelical public engagement, many of us are metaphorically in rocking chairs. The culture’s sure shifting, we say as we gaze at the sunset. In twenty years, you might lose your pulpit. We whistle low and shake our head. Crazy world.
“When it comes to all that cultural rabble-rousing, we grimace. We don’t want to go all Moral Majority in our pastorates and our churches. We’re avoiding all those overheated controversies. We’re not going to lose our soul to politics. You see, we have found the third way, the option that allows you to hold biblical beliefs on politics, society, and culture but not make a major issue of them.
“We believe accordingly that we can ‘sit out’ the major moral challenges of our day. But our convictions are stronger than this: we actually think that these moral challenges may not even come to our doorstep. Sure, maybe in twenty years, pastors and churches will face serious threats to their pulpits. Not now, though. We can keep our heads down and they’ll pass us by.”
But that is not the case at all, as the Dr Dunjey case amply testifies to – as do thousands of others. He continues, “But the pressure some of our best-known leaders are experiencing is a sign of dammed-up cultural vitriol. Satan is real. He hates the church. He despises God’s plan for men and women. He’s not like God; he doesn’t want humanity to flourish in rightly ordered homes, he wants it to be destroyed, judged, and damned. He’s launching an attack, I think, on the church. Under God’s rule, he’s pushing the culture to a point where to simply declare biblical convictions on marriage is to label oneself hateful.
“Do you see this? There is no third way on this issue. Sure, you may not hold marriage rallies with your church. No, you may not thunder from the pulpit against governmental tyranny. But we’ve already reached the point where in influential cultural circles pastors and Christian leaders are seen as morally backward and against the times on the issues of marriage and homosexuality. You don’t need to be a foam-mouthed culture warrior to wear these epithets. You simply need to believe God’s truth, proceeding from elemental texts like Genesis 2 and Ephesians 5, and the deal is done. There’s no amount of non-controversial, politically averse gospel preaching that can take away this sting.”
So what are we to do then? “Our response is not to damp down our witness, be quiet, speak in hushed tones, adopt ‘a softer’ approach, retreat from the cultural debate, ignore ‘political’ stuff, or any other such tactic. Our response must be to pray to God for courage, and then to bravely speak the truth wherever appropriate on crucial cultural issues. Andrew Walker and I just wrote a piece for First Things on this issue. Working from the examples of figures like Dietrich Bonhoeffer, we argue for the need for ‘theological courage,’ for bringing biblical-theological reality to bear on the major matters before us.
“Evangelicals, in one sense, should continue to do exactly what we’ve been doing. Pastors and churches should keep preaching the gospel. All sorts of meaningful work in a hundred areas should continue. But we must be theologically courageous. We must give an answer on morally inflammatory issues. We cannot silence ourselves. We can’t fool ourselves into thinking that if we’re just really, extraordinarily, super-erogatorily nice, we’ll somehow win everyone over. We need to be full of grace and truth as Christ our king was. We need to speak in those tones. But some people will dislike and even hate us for doing so.”
Yes quite so. Now is not the time to wimp out. We already have far too many evangellyfish, too many wimps for Jesus. Now we need men and women with some backbone who will stand up for one of the most primary moral and social issues of our day. Now is the time to stand strong for this most basic and most important of social institutions, and to stand up for children who are the biggest losers when we allow marriage to be gutted by the activists.
Leonard Ravenhill had it right when he said, “It’s going to demand a lot of courage before too long— to really live and maintain the true Christian life according to the Word of the Living God.” And A.A. Hodge was quite right to observe: “It is easier to find a score of men wise enough to discover the truth than to find one intrepid enough, in the face of opposition, to stand up for it.”
Warfare it is then. We are not called to a life of ease but to a life of battle. The stakes are too high and that which we fight for too important. Now is not the time to lose heart. As Martin Luther reminds us in his glorious hymn, A Mighty Fortress Is Our God: “And though this world with devils filled should threaten to undo us, we will not fear, for God has willed his truth to triumph through us.”