Greetings in Christ Jesus for a new week.
For the last two weeks, I have been preaching on a text from Luke 24:44-49a. It is Luke's equivalent of the Great Commission from Matthew. The sermons (Parts 1 & 2) have been entitled "The Church at War." Well, I came across an article in Facebook that went to prove how true it is. Unfortunately, as I researched the article, it definitely feels like the bad guys are winning.
This past week in the State of California Assembly, they passed a bill that could possibly outlaw "the sale or lease of goods or services to any consumer" that "includes efforts to change behaviors or gender expressions, or to eliminate or reduce sexual or romantic attractions or feelings toward individuals of the same sex."
The bill, known as Assembly Bill 2943, is now headed for approval by the State Senate and the signature of Governor Jerry Brown before becoming law. The initial purpose of the law was to criminalize "conversion therapies" that supposedly cure homosexuality. The problem is it could also be used to restrict or prohibit other means of helping people struggling with same sex challenges and questions which could be interpreted to include pastors providing counseling to such persons or preaching according to Scripture which holds a contrary view of such activity.
Will such a law ban the sale of the Bible or prosecute clergy preaching on scriptural morality? No, not today, but it does make one wonder about tomorrow's slippery slope. Is this an attack on orthodox Christian morality? Are conservative, traditional Christians, like me, hyperventilating over nothing? As I recall my history (I was a history major in college and a fan today with a lasting passion for history) before it started to be re-written to accommodate a politically correct and properly sanitized agenda, isn't that the way the "brown shirts" started prior to WWII? Just a book banning here and a book burning there so everyone would be thinking the right way, the party way?
The Christian church is at war with the devil and he's dressing up in new clothes that smack of old habits. Thank God that Christ our Lord has already won the war. Sadly, there are battles still coming that must be fought in a town near you and me soon. Be alert!
Pastor Lee R. Harder