The Real Battle
by John Thomson
If we, as evangelicals continue to use the Bible and its absolutes as
the hammer to fight the good fight for truth, then we are falling into a
trap. The issue to those advocating homosexuality is philosophical. It
is about empowerment as the so-called downtrodden, and as such is seen
as an extension of the civil rights movement.
I believe that the real issue is the battle between rationality and
irrationality; between modern thought and postmodern thought. Modern
thought believes in immutable absolute values (for us, Scriptures) while
postmodern thought believes in relativism (all religions have some
truth), and that for one to insist on the contrary, then that person is
being intolerant. That this is an inherently contradictory position is
irrelevant to the postmodernist. Just as Christians hold the conundrum
of election and human responsibility as a part of God's inscrutable
wisdom and plan from eternity, so also the postmodernist sees nothing
inherently wrong by holding onto irrationality as long as it doesn't
hurt anyone else. Thus the Discipline as well as the Bible are seen
equally as tools of oppression.
Here is a clip from World Magazine, December 2, 2000 issue. The
context is the election, and in particular the Gore team, but it is on
target for this piece, also:
These postmodernists maintain that truth-claims and moral absolutes
are nothing more than a personal or social construction. Politically,
this means the politics of spin-doctoring (professional construction
of plausibility paradigms), image manipulation (since style, not
substance, is what persuades in an era without truth), judicial
activism (since law is just a matter of interpretation), and ruthless
power politics (since truth is nothing more than the imposition of
power). For those unbounded by the limits of truth or morality who see
everything from cultural institutions to human nature as a social
construction, the state has, theoretically, infinite power.
Al Gore has inherited this mantle. Despite his apparent
retro-liberalism, Mr. Gore is actually taking postmodernism further
than his mentor. Mr. Clinton re-invented himself when he needed to, in
a manifestation of what postmodernist psychologist Robert Jay Lifton
approvingly calls the "Protean Self." But Mr. Gore is even
more Protean, changing his persona from week to week, audience to
audience. More seriously, postmodernism teaches that ideological and
cultural disagreements are not just differences of opinion, but rather
issues of power, that culture is a thinly disguised mask for groups in
power oppressing those who are not, who, in turn, must be
"empowered" to turn the tables. Thus, Mr. Gore scored votes
by setting groups against each other and promising, "I will fight
for you!" [demagoguery!]
Methodists, the battle is not focused only on our denomination; the
things that are happening among our ranks are symptoms of the larger
cancer. We are good, we have a form of godliness, but we deny the power
of God working among us. We all are in a spiritual battle, and the prize
is the hearts of the American people.
John Anderson, in his November 15, 2000 article in Pastor's Alert
writes the following:
Across our nation, the votes for George Bush and Al Gore are razor
close. The Senate and the House are split down the middle. Men have
voted one way; women another. Married women have voted differently
than single women. Minorities have voted differently than whites. The
rural vote is unlike the urban vote. Suburbia has split. Christians
have gone one way (with some sad exceptions); secularists another.
Pro-life has had one candidate; pro-death the other. Pro-traditional
values have stood with one candidate; pro-immoral values have stood
with the other. Those who believed the scandals of President Clinton
were important voted for Mr. Bush; those who exonerated the president
voted for Mr. Gore. On one side have been those who believe we are a
nation "under God"; on the other side those who would
completely secularize our culture. And on and on.
It is chilling to realize that on one side are those who vigorously
contend to allow the shedding of the innocent blood of our unborn,
taking us even more speedily toward our certain judgment; on one side
are those who would lead to sin worse than Sodom by allowing men to
marry men and women to marry women.
... We appear split. Deeply.
One place where both sides seem to agree is that we are at
a wrenching, soul-revealing moment. It is Baal or God.
Are we at a time when as one observer has said is a time when we
"could rip the crust off our culture, and we could quickly slip
into a dark age"?
Dr. Bill Bright told national leaders in Washington that the
present electoral crisis is the greatest crisis in the history of our
nation, greater than the "revolutionary" and "civil
wars." He said godless men are tearing America from God and that
"our nation's soul is at stake."
The pivotal question is: What is going on?
Answers include the following. Select one:
A) What is going on is this is the latest spiritual battle over
the soul of our country;
B) It is the most recent clash in the destruction of our country
as a Christian country, and over whether we will continue to exist
as a republic;
C) It is further evidence of God's judgment on our country in
which He is judicially "giving us up" to our sin and its
consequences (see Romans 1:24, 26, 28);
D) It is part of God's discipline on the distracted, worldly
American Church, calling them to repentance, to humility, and to
seek His face above all else (one thing God is saying to us in the
pulpit: "Clean up your message");
E) All of the above.
My selection is "E": all of the above. In various ways,
each is true. However we'll not take the time to discuss them in
But what we want to do is call fellow ministers to lead their
churches in urgent, special prayer.
This is a spiritual battle of major importance! More than you and I
We are facing a crisis, and it is not only in Methodism. I believe
that the wrath of God is being withheld from our nation in mercy, but
only for a while. If He disciplined his chosen people Israel for 400
years, we are arrogant fools if we think we will escape because we are
rich and militarily mighty.
Look at the warning and promise in Scripture:
If I shut up heaven that there be no rain, or if I command the locusts to devour the land, or if I send pestilence among my people; If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land. Now mine eyes shall be open, and mine ears attent unto the prayer that is made in this place.(2 Chronicles 7:13-15
From: Rev. John Thomson firstname.lastname@example.org
Sent: Saturday, December 02, 2000 2:08 PM
Subject: Accountability Coalition Files Complaint Against UM Church
and Society Mag For Promoting Homosexuality