Category Archives: Moral Issues

What Should Christians Do About Trump?

 

TrunpBe sure to read the added postscript at the bottom of this article.

There is little doubt that Donald Trump has caused quite a stir among political enthusiasts and non enthusiasts alike. He has captured the hearts of a majority of people across the nation who are tired of politics as usual. Among those who appear to be enthralled by his campaign promises are many professing Evangelical Christians. Early vote tallies provided by the Nevada Republican Party showed that 41 percent of Caucus attendees, identifying as born-again evangelicals, voted for Trump. In addition to this, Jerry Falwell Jr., a well known name among evangelicals, gave Trump a glowing endorsement and even defended his christian status on a cable news channel.

Simply looking at the evidence, there are plenty of reasons to question wether or not Donald Trump has been genuinely regenerated by the Spirit of God. It is not, however, the purpose of this article to determine whether or not Trump is a genuine follower of Christ. Nor is it the intent of this article to encourage Christians to support Trump, or any other candidate. Rather, the purpose of this article is to ask the question…“What should a Christian do if Donald Trump wins the GOP nomination and becomes the Republican presidential candidate?”

“What should a Christian do if Donald Trump wins the GOP nomination and becomes the Republican presidential candidate?”

One response to this scenario, and one that many Christians are already suggesting, is to refuse to vote altogether. One day, this may be the only response true, Bible believing Christians have during an election. I believe the political system in America will become so corrupt and morally bankrupt that Christians can no longer, in good conscience, cast a vote for any candidate. As post-modern America continues down the path of “tolerance” and “no-absolutes”, it will become unheard of to have a single candidate, on either side, who has a pro-life stance, or believes that marriage is the union of one man and one woman. However, we are not there yet.

If (and I emphasize IF) Donald Trump becomes the Republican candidate in the 2016 Presidential election, I could, as a believer and in good conscience, vote for him, and here are three reasons why.

Trump is pro-traditional marriage. When asked by cable talk show hosts Trump has repeatedly stated that he holds a traditional view of marriage. Clinton and Sanders, on the other hand, not only support same-sex marriage, but aggressively promote it.

Trump is pro-life. Yes, he used to be pro choice, but so was Ronald Regan before changing his mind. In a recent town hall meeting in Nevada, Trump said that he would de-fund Planned Parenthood if they continued to perform abortions. Clinton and Sanders however, are not only pro-choice, but aggressively defend abortion as a vital part of women’s healthcare.

Trump would appoint conservative Justices. We must not forget that over the next several years at least three supreme court justices will be appointed to the highest court in the land. Donald Trump and the Republican platform are more likely to appointed conservative justices that would uphold the constitutional rights for all men and women, including those still in their mother’s womb.  The opposite would be true for Hillary Clinton, who has stated “The unborn person doesn’t have constitutional rights.”

I know many point out the immoral shortcomings of Donald Trump and say, “I would never vote for such a wretched sinner as Trump!” However, we must remember that every leader who has ever been elected to public office in the history of the whole wide world has been a wretched sinner. Yet, the sovereign God of the universe has chosen, at times, to use wicked men to achieve his purposes throughout history.

In my opinion, by not voting for the candidate who claims to support two foundational morals of evangelical Christianity, we are assisting the candidate who openly opposes those morals, get elected.

At the end of the day we must remember that Politics and Government were never intended to be our Savior. Therefore, let us cast a simple vote for the one candidate that best represents the morals that God has given to protect a society, and then, let us get back to the more important business of proclaiming the glorious gospel of Christ!

[POSTSCRIPT: October 13, 2016] Much has happened over the past several months that has caused me to exercise great caution in regards to considering a vote for Mr. Trump. Although I am an avid supporter of life, I find it difficult to endorse a man who repeatedly tramples the values of the Christian faith. I understand why some Christians will vote for Donald Trump. I also understand why many can’t. Therefore, let us be gracious to one another and Kingdom focused, for the glory of God.

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Can Same Sex Couples Join Churches?

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According to an article written by Jonathan Merrit, a senior columnist for Religion News Service, a gay couple was barred from leading worship at Hillsong Church in New York City.Josh Canfield and Reed Kelly, billed as the Broadway Boyfriends on the reality show “Survivor: San Juan del Sur — Blood vs. Water,” were involved in worship leadership roles at Hillsong Church NYC. After the couple was engaged at their Jan. 28 concert, From Broadway to Survivor, Hillsong Pastor Carl Lentz asked the couple to step down from leading. However, the couple was welcome to remain at Hillsong and continue singing on stage each week, just not in an official leadership capacity. Though Hillsong holds a traditional view of marriage, they also wish for gay couples to feel welcome. Pastor Carl Lentz stated, “We have a lot of gay men and women in our church and I pray we always do.”

My struggle with this situation is not the idea of loving homosexuals and welcoming them when they attend our church. All people are broken, and in need of the grace that only the gospel can provide. However, I take issue with the idea that you can accept gay couples into the membership of a church, condone or even embrace their sinful lifestyle, and go on as though nothing is out of order.

Before you accuse me of hating, please understand that I do not believe homosexuality is the only sin in the Bible and I am certainly not on a gay bashing mission. As I have already stated, we should be welcoming and loving to all who walk through our doors on any given Sunday. However, there is a difference between walking into a church and joining a church. For those who do not take church membership seriously, you may want to quit reading this article now. But, for those who do take church membership seriously, we must answer a very important question–is homosexuality a sin? I know that some will say, “Jesus never said anything about homosexuality”.
Yet, Jesus didn’t have to because He said everything we needed to hear about sex and marriage, thereby establishing the once for all standard to measure all sexual relationships as being either right or wrong, as recorded in Matthew 19:3-6;

And Pharisees came up to him and tested him by asking, “Is it lawful to divorce one’s wife for any cause?” He answered, “Have you not read that he who created them from the beginning made them male and female, and said, ‘Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’? So they are no longer two but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let not man separate.”

In this passage, Jesus not only defines what marriage is, he also reaffirms the gender differences and establishes, without question, that sex and marriage is between a man and a women. These words spoken by Jesus are the final verdict on the question of sexuality and marriage–Period. Therefore, any sexual relationship outside the confines of the standard given by Jesus is sin–Period.

We lovingly point all sinners to the cross that they may see the Holiness of God and the sinfulness of man. As the Spirit breaks open their hearts, they are broken about their sin and repent and rest in the work of Christ. This is the result of regeneration. As regenerated believers join the church they are no longer the same person they once were. They have been changed, made alive, by the transforming power of the gospel. This is what Paul was talking about in 1 Corinthians 6:9-11 when he said:

Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.

The glory of the gospel is that it changes us. No – we are not perfect, and yes, we will still struggle with our sinful desires. However, we will no longer embrace them or condone them, but rather we will confess them and strive to forsake them for the sake of the gospel.

The point of this article is not to lift up homosexuals as the greatest of all sinners. We are all great sinners. Rather, it is to remind us that the local church is a place for all sinners, transformed by the power of the gospel, to gather together, not for the purpose of condoning and accepting the sinful behavior of each other, but to confront and condemn the sin in each others lives so that we may be conformed into the image of Christ. The rise of homosexuality being championed in many churches today, begs the question; Do we believe the Bible is the source of moral truth? If so, then we are obligated to submit to it as the final authority concerning all matters of sin in our lives. Those who call themselves ‘Christians’ and join a church body, should be willing to be judged by the standard of God’s Word as Paul points out in 1 Corinthians 5:9-13.

I wrote to you in my letter not to associate with sexually immoral people— not at all meaning the sexually immoral of this world, or the greedy and swindlers, or idolaters, since then you would need to go out of the world. But now I am writing to you not to associate with anyone who bears the name of brother if he is guilty of sexual immorality or greed, or is an idolater, reviler, drunkard, or swindler—not even to eat with such a one. For what have I to do with judging outsiders? Is it not those inside the church whom you are to judge? God judges those outside.

The searching question for church leaders today is, are we willing to follow the principles of the New Testament church in a post-modern world?

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Is It Ever Okay To Lie?

The author of an article published in Time magazine made a very valid point concerning the ninth commandment when he said, “The injunction against bearing false witness, branded in stone and brought down by Moses from the mountaintop, has always provoked conflicting emotions. On the one hand, nearly everybody condemns lying. On the other, nearly everyone does it every day.”

Most people would say lying is wrong unless, of course, they are the ones telling the lie. However, is it ever right to tell a lie? Someone might say, “Of course it is, if it spares someones feelings.” What about when your wife asks, “Does this dress make me look fat?” Should you tell the truth in love, or bend the truth a little in order to avoid hurting her feelings? What about the age old argument of hiding Jews from the Nazis in Germany during WWII? The soldiers come to the door and demand to know if there are Jews in the house. The owner of the house says, “No sir, there is nobody here but us.” Some would contend that by lying the owner of the house achieved a higher moral purpose; saving the lives of their neighbors.

Many attempt to support this idea from passages like Exodus 1:15-21.
15Then the king of Egypt said to the Hebrew midwives, one of whom was named Shiphrah and the other Puah, 16 “When you serve as midwife to the Hebrew women and see them on the birthstool, if it is a son, you shall kill him, but if it is a daughter, she shall live.” 17 But the midwives feared God and did not do as the king of Egypt commanded them, but let the male children live. 18 So the king of Egypt called the midwives and said to them, “Why have you done this, and let the male children live?” 19 The midwives said to Pharaoh, “Because the Hebrew women are not like the Egyptian women, for they are vigorous and give birth before the midwife comes to them.” 20 So God dealt well with the midwives. And the people multiplied and grew very strong. 21 And because the midwives feared God, he gave them families.

It appears that God blessed the Hebrew Midwives because they lied. However, does God’s morality change depending on the circumstances? Proverbs 12:22 says, “Lying lips are an abomination to the Lord..” If this is true, then how can there ever be a situation in which lying lips are pleasing to the Lord?

One way to understand the story in Exodus is to remember that God accomplishes His plan in spite of our sin, not because of it. Just because the Bible records the unrighteous acts of people, doesn’t mean it condones those actions. The wonderful truth is that God uses fallen, sinful people to accomplish His will in the world.

“God accomplishes His plan in spite of our sin, not because of it.”

Even though we should not lie, that doesn’t mean we have to say everything we are thinking. There is a time to be prudent, wise, discerning, and silent. However, when the time comes for us to speak up, let us strive to be truthful, for the glory of God.