Monday, July 19, 2010
Saturday, July 17, 2010
This post was written a few weeks ago by Pastor Mark Beeson. Mark is the Senior Pastor at Granger Community Church in Mishawaka. What are your thoughts.
Because I have children, andgrandchildren, I find myself thinking about how I can best help them understand the principles, morals and values of a Christ-centered life. I think about it a lot. I pray for wisdom. I study. I want the next generation to know how they can help God's Kingdom come, and God's will be done on earth, as it is in heaven. I want them to know what made America great. I want them to know how to make this world better.
You'd be correct if you assume I try to pay attention to what our President says and does. If the most powerful man on planet Earth (yeah, I know, other than Jesus) makes a Presidential Proclamation, it means all Americans should act accordingly. People should notice. Families should understand their President's wishes. Teachers should be able to explain them to their students.
When the president proclaims "National Sanctity of Human Life Day," elementary school teachers should explain to their students that life is sacred. All life is precious. And when the president proclaims "Martin Luther King Jr. Day," a Federal Holiday, grown-ups should explain the importance of Dr. King's great efforts to bring racial reconciliation to American society. Children should hear Dr. King's declaration that, "Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." And when our children learn of our president's proclamation of "National Child Abuse Prevention Month," we're responsible to explain that no child should ever suffer abuse from any adult - ever. It's up to parents, and pastors, and teachers, and youth leaders, and Grandmas to explain the meaning, intent and benefit of our President's Proclamations.
It's a privilege, and an honor, to help our children see the value of our President's Proclamations.
At least, it should be.
So, how do you tell your children about our President's Proclamation of "Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Pride Month?" What are we supposed to do with that? I've been wrestling with this for weeks.
Can your child's teachers explain our President's Proclamation to your kids?
"What's the President's Proclamation about?" the 3rd Grader asks. "I don't get it."
"Oh, Honey, that just means some boys like boys."
"You mean like my brother and me? We're best friends!"
"No. You're talking about brotherly love. This is about all Americans being proud of a different kind of love."
"Oh. You mean like God's love? Like we learned about in church?"
"No. This isn't about selfless love. It isn't about unconditional, self-sacrificing love."
"Then, what are we supposed to be proud about this month?"
"Well, this is about sexual desire and sexual love..."
(It's here in the conversation with an elementary school child I would find myself stumped. With other Presidential Proclamations I might have less difficulty, but this is where I don't think I know what to say to fresh-faced young Americans. I've thought about it, but I'm not sure my answer would help. I don't want to recommend homosexuality to my kids, much less take a whole month to publicly celebrate it with pride.)
What could I say?
Should I say this?
"I guess our President wants all Americans to take pride in the fact that in America anyone can have sex with anyone. If men satisfy their sexual desire for men, with men, that's fine. If women satisfy their sexual desire with women, that's fine too. And if they don't really know whether they are men, or women, since gender doesn't really matter, we can all take pride in the fact that they can have sex and it doesn't matter whether they're having sex with women or men. It's all about sexual release Sweetheart. It's all about satisfying any sexual desire you have. No rules. No limits. No old-fashioned injunctions restricting sexual freedom. Our president is leading America into the future. Isn't that nice?"
Not a single world religion endorses homosexuality as a source of community pride. Not one. is not allowed by Islam. Hinduism doesn't exalt it. The Dalai Lama, world-revered leader of millions of Buddhists and , declared from a Buddhist point of view, lesbian and gay sex is generally considered sexual misconduct. Sexual intercourse between two men is forbidden by the Torah, and is a capital offense. In , neither the Sifra, nor the Talmud, affirm homosexual acts. Confucians are expected to marry and have children; that is their responsibility to their ancestors and their country, so homosexuality is not praised in Confucianism. For the first 2,000 years of the Church, Christians did not declare homosexual behavior to be the best path for individuals, or society in general.
I will have to admit that Wiccans support the idea that acts of love, pleasure and beauty are sacred -- no matter which people happen to be participating -- so witches (not normally included in a list of major "world religions") are very accepting of homosexuality.
The President's Proclamation is suggested to be about justice and equal rights. Maybe it is. But it's about more than that. Much more. Read it. It's about the repeal of The Defense of Marriage Act (which makes explicit what has been understood under federal law for over 200 years; that a "marriage" is the legal union of a man and a woman as husband and wife, and a "spouse" is a husband or wife of the opposite sex). It's about more than the rights our Constitution guarantees all Americans. It's about lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender pride.
Let me ask:
Is lifting up a homosexual orientation, as a source of national pride, really helpful? Is this the pathway to becoming "a holy nation," or have we veered off course and - in the secularization of our lives - abandoned all true religion?
How about it?
1 Peter 2:9-10 - But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light. Once you were not a people, but now you are the people of God; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.
Pastor Michael now writing ~ Interesting and excellent comments by Pastor Mark Beeson. There are times in life when we need to focus on what is really important. The President is way off base on this. We should love everyone, not condemn anyone, but to endorse a month to celebrate sexual freedom, is more than we need. Your thoughts?
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